Friday, December 11, 2009

Lynn Reardon

As an avid horse enthusiast and owner of a retired race horse, when I heard about the book that Ms Reardon was writing, Beyond the Homestretch, I knew it was going to be great. There is no need to be a life long equestrian to enjoy this heartwarming look into the lives of some of these enchanting creatures. Ms Reardon has done a bang up job crafting a story that will reach into the hearts and souls of people from every walk. Whether you are in the business, an owner, a lover or just someone who enjoys a tale about second chances and the road it takes to get there, this is a must read!

To go along with this interview there is a giveaway :) The contest will run from Dec 13-19. Anyone who posts a comment on the review, the interview or emails me at will be entered into a random drawing to win a hardback copy of this wonderful book

1) For those who don’t know, can you please explain what LOPE is?
LOPE is a nonprofit devoted to finding ex-racehorses (of all breeds) new homes after their racing days are over. We work directly with the racing industry to transition these wonderful equine athletes into new careers via our adoption ranch, online services and urgent email bulletins. It’s very rewarding work

2) How many horses do you currently have at the LOPE ranch?
Right now, we have 11 horses here (and one more is on the way this week).

3) Horses can be expensive what with the skyrocketing cost of feed, hay and vet bills. I know that the ranch is a non profit, so how do you get the funds to help all these horses?
That’s a great question. We rely on donations for almost all of our annual budget. Many of our donations are under $100 and come from individuals who love horses. Our biggest funders are the LOPE Founders Circle – each member contributes $8000 annually toward LOPE’s operating budget. The Founders Circle has many individuals, one foundation and a local horse internet board (Texas Horse Enthusiasts). And then our vets (Austin Equine Associates) sponsor LOPE for almost all of our vet costs (which is a huge help).

4) Are you just the middle man between the trainers and buyers or do you adopt out horses as well? If so what do you look for in prospective owners?
We adopt out the horses that are donated to our ranch (the “LOPE Ranch owned horses” on our website). To adopt a horse, you have to fill out an approval form, provide vet and farrier references and agree to never race the horse (or sell the horse at auction, where someone could buy to race the horse again). We look for people who love horses, have experience owning them (or have a good trainer to help them) and, most importantly, are a good match for a particular horse here. Our horses have gone to trail riding, jumping, barrel racing, dressage and therapeutic riding homes, so there are many types of people who are good matches

5) Do you find it difficult to let go of the horses once they have been at the ranch for awhile? Definitely! I’ve adopted three of my own – and my husband only knows about two of them (he just keeps wondering why that third horse never gets adopted, lol). It’s kind of like being a kindergarten teacher though – you get attached, but you know they need to “graduate” from your class to first grade too.

6) What is LOPE in need of most? Donations or foster homes?
Donations probably help us out more. We try not to use foster homes too much (except in unusual cases) because it can be difficult to expect foster homes to put in so much time and cost – especially during a drought year. Our ultimate goal would be to raise enough funds to open a second adoption ranch (or expand our current one) instead.

7) Can you tell us about the worst case you have ever seen?
Storm, one of the horses in the book, came to us with a sesamoid fracture. He also had congenital problems in his respiratory system – that ultimately led to him having a temporary, then a permanent, tracheotomy (while he was at the LOPE Ranch). Storm also had deep set abscesses in both feet – that required surgery. He was truly the worst case I’d ever seen! But he recovered fully and was adopted to a new home. It was very rewarding to see him heal and become rideable again.

8) What do you hope people learn from reading your book?
I hope people will learn that ex-racehorses can make wonderful riding horses and pets! So often these horses get reputations for being crazy or wild – when often they are simply misunderstood or mishandled. Also, that it’s never too late to become what you might have been (as George Eliot’s famous quote says). I was the least likely person to run a racehorse adoption ranch – yet look at me now

9) What made you want to write a book about your ranch and the horses who have touched your life?
Whenever people came to see the horses, I always had lots of information to tell them about each horse’s personality and history. I spend so much time interacting with the horses that I really get to know all of their little quirks and entertaining habits. I’d go on and on, telling these stories to prospective adopters and funders – and then someone said, “hey you should write a book about the horses.” So, finally one day I sat down and began writing – the words flowed so naturally whenever I described the horses and their stories. Within a few months, I had accumulated over 60,000 words – and that eventually grew into the book.

10) What kind of fundraisers does LOPE have through the year to help with expenses?
We do a big horse show every spring – it’s a fun, family type schooling show with English and Western classes. And we do 2 or 3 online silent auctions as well – to help with hay and feed costs during the year. I’m always so grateful at how many people are willing donate their time, their special items (like art or racing memorabilia) and their hard earned dollars to help us raise funds!

Please let our readers know what we can do to help:
We appreciate any and all help! Some things that really can give us a boost are simple fundraisers, such as bake sales, Ebay auction donations, etc. I often run out of time to think of all the neat ways LOPE could raise funds and awareness through small events at local boarding barns or tack stores or horse shows. For example, we recently had a book signing at BookPeople – before the event, one of our volunteers approached the Tiniest Bar in Texas (which is very close to BookPeople). Within a few minutes our volunteer convinced the bar to donate part of their proceeds to LOPE for the night of the book event! I never would have thought of that – and LOPE ending up raising a nice donation towards our feed budget, thanks to Tiniest Bar and our volunteer. We also really appreciate donations of barn supplies, vet supplies, halters and so on.

Helping us get the word out about the book is super helpful – especially around the Christmas gift season. A significant part of the book proceeds will go to LOPE, so the more sales, the better Also, we feel like the book is a good way to get the word out about LOPE and our work – and it might help attract more sponsors to the organization.

Website for LOPE is
Website for the book is

THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! I’m so excited about the interview and really, really appreciate all of your support.


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Jaydyn Chelcee

I want to introduce you to one of my favorite authors of a wonderful series, Jaydyn Chelcee! When I got her first Montana Men book, In the Arms of Danger, I was in love from the first page. I have since been snapping up all the following titles the second I can get my hot little hands on them. :) I am hooked :) Now it is your turn to learn a bit about this author and her amazing stories. Don't forget to check out the review for Too Close To The Fire that will be released on December 7th from Eternal Press!
Hi Readers and Fans,

First, let me thank Seriously Reviewed for inviting me here today. I hope everyone will enjoy the questions and answers.
Jaydyn Chelcee

What genres and authors would we find you reading when taking a break from your own writing?
J—I read everything by Linda Howard, Christine Feehan and Karen Marie Moning. All three ladies are great authors and they tend to write paranormal, which of course, is one of my favorite genres. (Laughs—think witches and vampires) However, I also love Judith McNaught and Julie Garwood. These two ladies know how to write tender, funny historical romances and I adore a great historical.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
J—The most difficult thing for me to do while writing TCTTF was allowing my heroine to have sex with another man. I know this isn’t the “norm” for romances, but I like to write outside the box and although we all love romances and “Happy Ever After Endings” life isn’t always perfect, neither are marriages. I want my characters to have the same problems or temptations every one of us have, plus a little more. I like to be more creative than a simple boy meets girl, they fall in love and everything is coming up roses, so I tend to give my characters tougher problems to deal with.

Do you have travel when researching your books? If yes, where is the most interesting place you’ve visited?
J—I do travel a lot, especially to the western states, for obvious reasons. I think Deadwood, S.D. has been one of the most interesting places I’ve been to and researched. I’ve started a new series titled the Angels of Deadwood Gulch series. This series will be published by Moongypsy Press with Fallen Angels, book one due to be released in the spring of 2010. I’m very excited about this series, because it’s a little different for me…think paranormal historical…totally different for me. (Laughs) There will be more news about this series after the first of the year.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?
J—Mostly a pantser. I do have a general idea of what the story is going to be about and what my characters will look like, but other than that, everything unfolds in the story as I write it. So I never know when a new character will jump in and demand his/her story or what my characters will think, say or do to move the story along.

When not writing, how do you relax?
J—I’m an avid coin collector. One way I relax is to search the Net for coin deals or simply browse pawn shops for coins or coin shops. If I can’t do that, then I read or spend quality time with hubby watching a movie or chat with my kids on the phone. There’s never a moment I’m not busy.

What sound drives you crazy?
J—The phone ringing when I’m deeply engrossed in writing a hot love scene. (Giggles) No one likes to be interrupted during sex! (Laughs)

You can erase one embarrassing experience from your past. What will it be?
J—Getting caught making out in the back seat by the police. I still shudder when I think about them shining their lights in on my partner and me and asking him if he needed any help. (Hysterical laughter here!) Yes, I can laugh now, but boy, not then.

What is sexier boxer or briefs?
J—Definitely Briefs…Not much left to the imagination there. I like to see what I’m getting…Ha!

Who’s more fun, bad boys or perfect gentlemen and why?
J—Oh, give me a bad boy any day.(Laughs)…You have noticed my heroes in my books are BAD…right?? (Giggles) Why a bad boy? Hmm, why not??

Where is the craziest place you’ve ever had sex?
J—Ha! I don’t know about crazy, but on the hood of the car, where in the light of day, my partner was insensitive enough to leave the print of my butt cheeks on his windshield for over a week just to aggravate me…(Laughs…Yes, this is the same man who quietly informed the police he could handle the job of my seduction in his back seat all by himself…*Sigh*…(My own hero, my love, my hubby)

Great news here readers,
Beginning Jan. 1, I'm holding a 'Vote For Your Favorite Hero' contest on my blog site. The contest is between Danger Blackstone and the mystery man in Lacey Blackstone's life from the Montana Men series. (Don't want to give away who he is for those readers waiting for book three)...but now's the time to read the first two books and then Too Close to the Far so you can vote...I must have your ballot by Jan. 30th. At 6pm CST on the 30th, I'll close the ballot box and count the votes...For everyone who votes and leaves a comment, I'll drop your name in a ballot box and on Jan. 31st, at 6pm CST, I'll post the winner's name on my blog site, so you'll definitely need to mark these dates on your calendar and check back on the 31st so I can contact the winner and get a mailing address. You'll have one week to contact me with an address or I'll draw another name, because the lucky commenter wins a sgined copy of the first three books with a promise from me to send the final two books at a later date as they're released so the winner will have a complete set of signed books from this series...Today's commenters will receive their choice of any of my published books in E-format either one from the Montana Men series or the Winslow witches of Salem be sure and leave a comment and check back about 5 pm CST today for the lucky winner's name...Happy reading and good luck!

*Please share with us your future projects and upcoming releases.

J--As I mentioned above, I have the Deadwood Gulch series coming out in the spring, with five books planned for it, along with a new paranormal series titled the Gray Mortuary series, also to be published by Moongypsy Press with book one titled, Ginger Gray, Medical Examiner. There are six books planned for this series. Both new series will be released under my Tabitha Shay pen-name. Besides these, I have two more books left to write in the Montana Men series with Playing for Keeps, book four, scheduled for release in 2010. And, of course two books from the Winslow witches of Salem series, Witch’s Fire, book five and Witch’s Touch, book six sometime in 2010.

Readers can find my books in print at or in E-format at or they can visit my website at where they will discover some wonderful art of my some of my characters with new pages constantly being added. You can friend me at

Thank you Seriously Reviewed for your wonderful questions, both serious and fun.
Jaydyn Chelcee