Sunday, March 20, 2011

Seekerville Weekend Edition

Thanks to Steena at Chocolate Reality for reminding me that in the US, this week has been National Chocolate Week. Here's the story of chocolate, but if you want to get right to the good stuff, Seekerville will be giving away a chocolate treat from See's Candies. Winner announced in the next Weekend Edition.

Just tell us about your favorite chocolate, a chocolate memory, how chocolate is featured in a romance you wrote or read, or share a chocolate recipe.

We Have Winners!
Please contact Seekerville through our new web email if you are a winner and if needed, provide your snail mail address. Please note our giveaway rules in the right lower column of Seekerville.

Last Sunday we thanked YOU our readers, followers, and lurkers. Winners of the Seeker inspirational romance book of their choice (currently available) are Faye Rhys and Angela Bell. And the winner of $10 Starbucks card for a beverage to sip while they read our books is Valerie Comer.

Monday Janet Dean shared Let Your Character's Write Their Story. Winner of Janet's latest release from Love Inspired Historical, Wanted: A Family, is Renee Ann.

Wednesday the Grammar Divas were our grammatically correct guests. Winner of a 15 page manuscript and 5-page synopsis critique (grammar and style) from the Divas is Jan Drexler.

Thursday Mary Connealy brought you Mary Higgins Clark Roller Coaster Fiction. The winner of Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook by Donald Maas is Jan Christiansen.

On Friday Seekerville was treated to YA author and musher, Terry Lynn Johnson. Winner of her debut YA release Dogsled Dreams is Leigh.

The Best of Seekerville from the Archives was Mary Connealy's ABCs. Winner of a Five Page Critique by an anonymous Seeker is Sarah Wall Ladd who posted on Facebook.
Next Week In Seekerville

Monday: Love Inspired author Missy Tippens is posting in Seekerville today and she is giving away a copy of her April release, A Family for Faith.

Tuesday: Avalon author Sandra Leesmith shares today.

Wednesday: Love Inspired Romance author Glynna Kaye brings us What's Holding You Back? Part 3: No Time To Write. And she's giving away a copy of Kelly L. Stone's Time to Write.

Thursday: Thomas Nelson author Cara Lynn James is your hostess in Seekerville.

Friday: Love Inspired Historical author Winnie Griggs is our guest today with Effective Pacing-Rapid Fire is Not Always Best. Stop by for this excellent post and a chance to win a copy of The Proper Wife.

Seeker Sightings

On Wednesday, March 23, Ruthy will be teaching eager or yawning students about the ins and outs of creative writing at Hilton Central High School, some of which she knows, some of which she'll make up. Middle school and high school students and members of the community are invited to attend.

Don't miss Ruthy's Cold Call Interview at An Audience of One on Friday, March 25th!!

Congratulations to Julie Lessman! A Hope Undaunted is a 2011 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence 2011 Finalist.

Cara Lynn James was interviewed at Casey Herringshaw's blog, The Audience of One, last Monday. You have until March 25 to comment and win
a copy of Love on Assignment.

Random News

  • The BookClub Network Inc is having a Scavenger Hunt on Monday, March 21st at 9PM. There will be $150 in gift cards given away, 5 x $20 and 2 x $25 gift cards. Chat room will be opened at 8:30 PM eastern and the Hunt begins at 9PM eastern. See the site for more information.

  • Did you know that if you're a first-time shopper at eHarlequin, they have a special deal? FREE shipping on your first order! Just browse and add your books to your shopping cart. When you check out, select the "Economy" shipping option ("Standard" for Canadian customers) and you'll automatically get FREE shipping! Shop now here.

  • Introducing Avon Impulse! (From the Avon newsletter): For those of you who have not yet heard, we've just launched a digital publishing romance imprint, Avon Impulse. Featuring established Avon authors as well as new talent to be published as e-originals, the imprint will include e-books and print-to-order novels and novellas. And now we're taking submissions! We're looking for fresh, engaging, high quality, innovative romance fiction. Here's your opportunity to take romance in the direction you'd like to see it go. For guidelines and an online submission portal, visit

Oh, and before we leave we'd like to say Happy Birthday to two birthday gals that hang around here. Mary Connealy and Erica Vetsch.

And P.S.S Remember the Golden Heart and RITA calls go out on Friday, March 25th. The complete finalist list will be posted on the RWA website by 2pm CST, but RWA promises to post finalists as they are contacted on the RWA site.


  1. Awww, thank you for the birthday wishes. :)

    Is it any surprise that Mary and I are birthday twins? :D

    My favorite chocolate is Galaxy Milk Chocolate. A friend in England sent me some once and it was so smooth and creamy...yum!

  2. Wow, I just researched that. Galaxy Milk Chocolate. Sounds yummy.

    Happy Birthday to you and Mary.

    I am a Dark Chocolate fan and Hershey's Special Dark is a favorite.

    Gourmet type I am a total See's fan!

  3. Happy Birthday Erica and Mary!

    Yum, all that chocolate is making me hungry.

  4. Happy happy birthday Erica and Mary!

    See's Chocolates? OH MYYYY.

    However, my current fave is a Norwegian brand, Freia. They have a huge variety.

    Here's a bit about them from Wikipedia: The company was founded in 1889, but real success was seen only in 1892, when Johan Throne Holst (1868–1946) took over management.

    Holst realized that there was a potential market for edible milk chocolate, in addition to the dark chocolate and other minor products Freia were producing at the time.

    Holst built up Freia to be Norway's leading chocolate manufacturer

    So may we surmise there was a time someone DIDN'T think there was a market for "edible milk chocolate"? WHAT?!

    The funny story is when I was in the airport duty free shop awhile back, I carted 10 bars of Freia to take back home with me for gifts. The lady at the counter looked at me, rather appalled, wondering why I was buying so many. "They are so common."

    Uh NO. If you've had a European Snickers for example, you KNOW what I'm talking about.

    Tina, great graphics today. MMM!

    Congrats to all the winners too!

  5. Happy Birthday Mary and Erica.
    never had Galaxy chocolate.
    my favourite Cadbury's which is even nicer than the American version.
    I feel like a chocolate freddo about now.
    Congrats to all winners

    Just finished The Ranchers Reunion and loved it.

  6. Galaxy Milk Chocolate??? Oh, yum!

    Does anybody still find "World's Finest" chocolate bars? We did fundraisers for them at Nazareth Academy and oh mylanta, melt-in-your-mouth wonderment!!!!

    Tina, huge thank yous for the up-to-the-minute info! You rock the big Kahuna.



    And yes, Jenny and K.C., there are different versions for different areas and (sadly) some of ours in America aren't as silky-smooth refined.

    To keep costs down, we down-graded here.

    Do you guys remember 'ice cubes' those little gold-wrapped squares of chocolate with macadamia nuts?

    Loved 'em.

    Got my first See's chocolate after ACFW in Denver. Wonderful stuff. Made me respect Warren Buffett's amazing discerning brain even more.

    Coffee's ready. Hot, delicious and inviting! A Sunday buffet is served as well, so come on over, grab some ham, sausage or beef, dip fruit in the chocolate fountain, sample the cheesecakes and/or the lemon tarts.

    Delectable. French toast, waffle and crepe bar is to the left. You'll find the hot strawberry, triple-berry and apple toppings in the chafing dishes alongside.

    Enjoy the day the Lord has made!

  7. Happy birthday, Erica and Mary!

    I always look forward to the Sunday articles. They're much better than anything I find in the newspaper.

  8. I love those crazy chocolate covered cherries that are sold mostly during Christmas time. Did you know that Blue Bell has a chocolate covered cherry ice cream! It's so good. I really like anything dark chocolate though. I just bought some dark chocolate flavored peanut butter at WalMart. Slice up an apple and dip it in the peanut butter..Mmmm.


  9. Happy Birthday Mary & Erica!

    Hmmmm...favorite chocolate...probably Godiva's dark chocolates.

    Congratulations to all the winners!

  10. See's? Did you say SEEEEE'S????? I LOVE LOVE LOVE that stuff! And you can't buy it (in person, anyway) in Michigan.

    I might put See's as my favorite (would that get me a boost up?), but I think I'd have to say Thin Mints, since they are VERY close to being in my hot little hands (and warm big mouth!). Picking them up from the Girl Scout leader on Tuesday!

    And Happy Birthday, Erica and Mary! Love the WE (and Ruthy's sighting made me totally LOL).

  11. Hmm. I pick up a Hershey bar now and then. The grocery store is the only place around here to get chocolate.

    Congrats to all the winners.

    And happy, happy birthday to Mary and Erica!!!


  12. Many happy returns, Mary & Erica!

    Today is also my father-in-law's 79th birthday.

    Congrats, Julie on being a finalist in the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence! Gayle Wilson is such a lovely lady. She was the keynote speaker at one of the small writers conferences I went to a few years back. She had us all in tears with her talk. Loved her southern accent, too!

    My favorite chocolates are Lindt! Their truffle balls are awesome.

    Off to catch up on laundry & cleaning.


  13. I'm just a simple chocolate lover - give me a nestle crunch and I'm a happy camper!

    ooh Winnie Griggs will be here! she's one of the first love inspired historical authors I read. She and Mary have a lot in common - both have killed off a perfectly good horse :-( didn't know she had another book out though!


  14. Yes, I've used chocolate in a story before. My favorite kind of chocolate is my mother's home made chocolate pie, or my mother-in-laws heath bar-chocolate pudding-cool-whip concoction made in a punch bowl.


    Mama's pie or Ms. Margie's pudding stuff? Now, that's a HARD decision! I'll have both, thank you very much.

    As a child, I would actually buy and eat the Baker's chocolate bars.

    My favorite TRUE story to tell:

    When I was about 5-6, we had homecoming at our church. Here in the South, that's every fall where you have a huge potluck dinner (outside on sawhorse tables back then), and then a singing afterward.

    I was young enough that Mama still had to fix my plate, and she asked me what I wanted.

    My reply:

    "Anything, as long as it's chocolate."

    We went straight to the dessert table.

  15. Happy birthday, Erica and Mary! :D

    Who doesn't like chocolate? I like to eat it, smell it, look at it, read about it... and in most forms! Drinkable, cake, ice-cream, pie, pudding, candy, cookies.

    My name is Whitney and I'm addicted to chocolate.

  16. Happy Birthday Mary and Erica!

    I enjoy all kinds of chocolate. My favorite way is in a cafe mocha, hot or iced.

    I haven't used chocolate yet in a story. Coffee shows up in almost every story I write. Either the main character drinks it or someone else does. I guess that means I'm addicted to coffee more than chocolate, but it's best when they're together.

  17. Happy Bday, Erica and Mary! And happy first day of Spring, everyone!

    Pam, I loved your chocolate story--so sweet!

    When I was a kid, my dad would wake my brothers and me up at 4am to go fishing. On the way to the dock, we'd stop at the all-night convenience store where Dad would buy bait (worms) and a little package of chocolate donuts. We'd eat the donuts on the boat, loving them even though they tasted a little like salty bay water and . . . you guessed it--worms!

    Thanks for the great WE, Tina!

  18. So much information in this WE!

    Happy Birthday Mary and Erica! Hope you have a blessed day!

    Big Congrats to Julie!!

    What fun to take a course from Ruthy! Wish I lived closer for the information and the good times.

    As for chocolate you can't beat chocolate dipped strawberries, unless it's a strawberry mocha from the Mountain Mudd coffee in Riverton, Wyoming.

    Hope everyone has a great Sunday!

  19. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARY AND ERICA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Oh and what a perfect weekend edition, to have Chocolate featured?? :DD

    I'm not a huge chocolate fan, though I do like it. But my favorite chocolate desert is my mom's chocolate cake. Now THAT is good! :)

    *sorry made a mistake on my last comment. :)*

  20. Oh, Kirsten darling, we'll see if these kids feel the way you do by Wednesday night...

    My house might get egged.


  21. Mmmm....(picture Homer Simpson with the pie that fell on the floor "Floooooor pie!!!"

    "Chocolate pie....."

    Oh mylanta, for such treasures as these, angels have fallen!!!

  22. Well, Ruthy, it'll just show how far gone this generation is if they can't enjoy your wit and wisdom. And I'm not just saying that to be the teacher's favorite.

  23. ARRGHHH!! Sorry Casey, been an crazy week. I plead BRAIN FART!.

    Please note the two Seeker appearances in the updated Weekend Edition.

  24. Awesome, that chocolate dipped strawberry has me wanting to make some of my own. I just love chocolate not sure I have a favorite.

    I do have a funny story about chocolate though.

    When I was a kid in Germany, mom decided to by a bunch of those formed chocolates in the brightly folded wrapping for her third grade Sunday School class which I happened to be in. We got the candy and it was all going great till we opened them and bit in.

    Seems the rabbits, duckies, and cute little critters were filled with liquor.


    Tina P.

  25. Oh, and happy birthday to Mare and Erica, raising a chocolate bunny to you even now.


  26. AHHHHHH!!! That is hilarious, Tina.

    Did I know you lived in Germany? Things are seeping from my brain like a leaky hose lately.

    I lived in Augsburg.

  27. Happy Birthday Erica and Mary! I haven't read Erica's work yet, but I was hooked after my first chapter of Doctors In Petticoats by Mary! I have to see if the twin thing reaches writing!

    My favorite chocolate is SEE'S even though I live in Hershey,Pa.! (Hersheys sold out their All American Chocolate Bar to Mexico!)For those of you who aren't aware, chocolate tastes different from each plant it is made in. I was a taste tester for Hershey's and there was a huge differance between the Hershey Plant here and the one in California that made kisses and Hershey Bars!

    My memories are life changing...Chocolate saved my life and that of my grandmother. We have always been chocolaholics. Grandma's favorite also being See's. Before she died they couldn't get her to eat anything, until my daughter and I sent her a big box of See's! She lived on See's for several months, it was the only thing she wanted, until she finally died from fluid around her lungs. But it was long enough for her to get ot see everyone and say good bye.

    My love of Chocolate brought this traveling gypsie to Hershy Pa because I heard the air smelled like chocolate (It did until they moved the factory to Mexico). During that time I was a rebellious child and was angry with my Heavenly Father so I refused to take my children to church with those Hippocrites (Satan's favorite excuse!)and avoided all things Christian. When we visited Hershey we fell in love with a town built around chocolate and moved here the same day. Because we still had not moved our stuff from Delaware to here we needed clothes when the hot weather suddenly hit, and there was a free clothing giveaway at the local church, so I went. A girl named Brenda was unlocking the door as we arrived, and handed me her baby to hold as we talked. She had been at the shore and the girl who was supposed to work that evening was going to call off, so she grabbed her family and ran home, still wearing their bathing suits under their clothes and sand in their shoes. As we talked, her son invited my kids to vacation Bible school the next week...and for reasons I couldn't explain I took them. On Wednesday night, in separate rooms, we all accepted Jesus as our personal savior! Brenda became my best friend and still is, and we have served Him faithfully ever since. Once again Chocolate saved our lives.

    I am writing a wip called Sweet Beginings in Hershey, Pa about a grouchy old fat woman who was down on love and wanted to shoot Cupid, but ends up moving to Hershey and becomes partners in a Wedding Chapel called New Beginings, where she learns to love herself through the couples that come through the chapel...and ultimately learns it is never too late to fall in love when its in God's plan. Guess you know I have lived quite a bit of the story already! Now, I am off to make Chocolate pancakes for breakfast...Have a wonderful first day of spring! (

  28. WOW!!! CHERI!! What a chocolate story.

    AMAZING! Thank you so much for sharing!

  29. My favorite chocolate is Lindt, and their dark chocolate truffles in the royal blue package are my favorite favorite favorite. And you've just made me want some really bad.

    Oh, Julie, I'm so tickled for you, finaling in the Gayle Wilson Contest! Congrats to you!!! It's officially contest season now, I guess. And so hot down here in Alabama. After all that snow we had, it's now almost 80 degrees, and the heat is reminding me of your super-hot books, woman!!! LOL! All that passion. I can't believe your books aren't set in the South, especially with your Gone with the Wind fetish. You definitely should set that next series in the South. Just sayin'...

  30. HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARY AND ERICA!!! Hope it's been a wonderful day.

    YUMMY WE, Teenster, and I'm right there with Sue and Mel that Lindts truffle balls are my absolute FAV!!!

    Thanks, Sue, Kirsten and Mel for the congrats -- it's my first time ever to actually final in the Gayle Wilson, so I'm excited!!


  31. I would believe we were separated at birth, Erica, if you weren't so blasted YOUNG!!!!!!!!!!

  32. It's impossible for me to choose one chocolate ;) But for now - I'll say chocolate covered strawberries since we have been having fondu's all weekend to celebrate the ending of National Chocolate Week ;)

  33. Loves 2 Read Romance - LauraMarch 20, 2011 at 8:09 PM

    Congrats to all the winners. Looks like we are in for another great week in Seekerville! I love chocolate chip cookies, chocolate cake and a ton of other things that are chocolate. Happy Birthday Erica & Mary

  34. Oh, Teenster, you're torturing me with chocolate!! I'm not eating anything sweet. And now my mouth is watering!

    Great weekend edition!

    Happy b-day Mary and Erica!!

  35. Happy birthday, Mary!!!

    Happy birthday, Erica!!!

    Congratulations, Julie, on the Gayle Wilson final!!!!!

    The chocolate is driving me slightly nuts. :-) But thanks for a great Weekend Edition, Tina.


  36. why is it I want chocolate when I cant get it! Its raining today and when I say rain I mean bucketing down. now I dont drive so the only way to get chocolatate requires walking which even with an unbrella I would get soaked, riding my bike more soaked or a taxi. now a taxi would cost $8 each way which makes the chocolate way to exspensive so I guess I will just drool over the pics in this blog (and hope the rain stops in the next 3 hours.)

  37. Julie, I actually have met Gayle Wilson. I sat beside her at a booksigning for about two hours this past October. :-) She's a lovely person.

  38. Yay! Thank you for all the birthday happies.

    Julie! Woohoo on The G.Wilson final! You rock!

    And I'm bringing my birthday cake--red velvet--for everyone for a late-night snack. I need some help getting rid of it since I shouldn't eat it all. :)

  39. Cheri, the word WAS should NEVER, EVER (I repeat NEVER, EVER!!!) be used in conjunction with being a taste tester for Hershey's.

    I AM a taste tester for Hershey's...


    I WILL BE a taster tester for Hershey's

    but WAS????

    No way. No how! lol

    PS. Been to the plant in Hershey's, like 20 years ago. It was amazing!

  40. Happy birthday to Erica and Mary! (It's still your special day in California.)

    My favorite chocolate memory . . .

    My Gwynly and I met over a plate of his homemade chocolate chip cookies. He was leaving a singles' function at our church. I hadn't met him, so I used the excuse of snatching the last cookie off his platter as my way of introducing myself. We were married nine months later and served his delicious chocolate chip cookies alongside slices of wedding cake in memory of our sweet meet.

  41. Awwwwwww, Keli was a great story!!!

    Send the recipe!!!!!

  42. Pam, I should clearify...I was a PROFESSIONAL taste tester for Hershey Foods! I even graduated from the Hershey's Chocolate University! I will ALWAYS be a chocolate taster on a personal level, but that was my dream job and I loved it! We tasted all kinds of Hershey Products along with other people's products and made professional evaluations...such a rough job, huh? Someboday had to do it for the benifit of!

  43. Well, any kind of chocolate is my favorite kind. KC, you'd better bring some of that Norwegian chocolate back with you to share with your friends (hint, hint). Happy birthday Erica and Mary.

  44. the more chocolate the better. Triple Chocolate chip cookies are delicious as is death by chocolate cake.

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