Blog by VONNIE DAVIS -- International, Award-Winning Romance Author: Adventurous...Humorous...Amorous.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Dawn Marie Hamilton: "Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon"

Look who've I got visiting today! Author Dawn Marie Hamilton. I'm thrilled to have her as a guest. I love that she dares us to dream. She's a 2013 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist who pens Scottish-inspired fantasy and paranormal romance. Some of her tales are rife with mischief-making faeries, brownies, and other fae creatures. More tormented souls—shape shifters, vampires, and maybe a zombie or two—stalk across the pages of other stories. She is a member of The Golden Network, Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal, Celtic Hearts, and From the Heart chapters of RWA. When not writing, she’s cooking, gardening, or paddling the local creeks of Southern Maryland with her husband. Make sure you leave a comment today. Follow Dawn's easy-peasy directions to be eligible for her give-away. Whoot!

Thanks for having me, Vonnie. 

Authors are often asked during interviews where they get story ideas. Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon is the second novel in the Highland Gardens series, Scottish time travel romance with faeries. Sometimes the imagination is the best answer for fantasy stories.

Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon occurred while doing research for the first story in the series, Just Beyond the Garden Gate. I planned for gemstones to play a role in the series. In The Power of Gemstones, Precious and Semi-Precious Stones, Healing Powers, and Mystical Properties by Raymond J.L. Walters, I came across a reference to moonstones. Moonstones are believed to possess extreme power. Cool! Among many interesting attributes, they are believed to enable a person to foretell the future.

I could make the heroine in the second book a seer. Then I read further and found an interesting legend. “On the Asian continent, the pale lustrous blue color of the moonstone is considered to resemble moonlight. However, the best of the blue moonstones are washed up by the tides when the Sun and the Moon are in a particular heavenly and harmonious relationship, which occurs every twenty one years (three 7-year cycles of the moon). This event gives rise to the saying that denotes a lengthy period of time—Once in a Blue Moon”.

Instead of Asia, I imagined the stones washing up on the shores of the faerie paradise Tir-nan-Óg—land o’ heart’s desire. No one really knows where Tir-nan-Óg is. Perhaps in Asia. Perhaps in another realm. Oh, and Once in a Blue Moon seemed like a good title. Almost. Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon. Perfect!

Blurb for Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon:
What happens when a twenty-first century business executive is expected to fulfill a prophecy given at the birth of a sixteenth-century seer? Of course, he must raise his sword in her defense.

Believing women only want him for his wealth, Finn MacIntyre doesn't trust any woman to love him. When, during Scottish Highland games, faerie magic sends him back in time to avenge the brutal abduction of his time-traveling cousin, he learns he's the subject of a fae prophecy.

Elspeth MacLachlan, the beloved clan seer, is betrothed to a man she dislikes and dreams of the man prophesized at her birth, only to find him in the most unexpected place—facedown in the mud.

With the help of fae allies, they must overcome the treachery set to destroy them to claim a love that transcends time.

Journey from the lush gardens of the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina to the Scottish Highlands of 1511 with Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon.


A sweet smile curved the faerie’s lips and the edges of her ageless, green eyes crinkled.

Mairi relaxed against the pillows. The woman didn’t bring warnings of ill fortune. The faerie’s gray silk gown reminded Mairi of the ever-present Highland mists—a thought that made her frown.

“Why so sad, mistress? You have a bonnie wee one in your arms.” The faerie glided to the side of the bed and peered at the bundle Mairi cradled.

Why, indeed? The answer troubled Mairi more than the woman’s sudden appearance. Less than a sennight had passed since their child’s birth, yet her husband left this morn in anger. She hadn’t meant to quarrel with him, but he had set his course.

“My stubborn man is off to meet with the Campbell to secure a contract for the babe to wed one of his grandsons.”

She didn’t want such an arrangement for her bairn. She begged Iain that when the time came for the child to wed, he allow the lass to choose a husband of her own. Mairi wanted wee Elspeth to find love in the marriage bed, as she herself had.

“Be at peace.” The old woman reached down to move the swaddling away from the babe’s face, distracting Mairi from her glum thoughts. The faerie ran a finger along the bairn’s tender cheek. A pleasant smile transformed her as she gazed upon the perfect features of the precious lass. She glanced at Mairi and in a raspy voice said, “Just once in a verra blue moon love will…” The faerie’s brow puckered. “Oh, dear.” She tapped a finger against her wrinkled chin. “I simply cannot remember what I am to say.”

“Ah, yes.” Her face beamed. “When three, seven-year cycles of the moon wane…” The wise one placed her hand on the wee babe’s forehead and gazed into the infant’s eyes. “A strange warrior from an unknown far-off place will come wielding the mighty lost sword of the fae to save you from despair, dear one. Just once in a verra blue moon love will triumph.”

As silently and swiftly as she arrived, the faerie woman disappeared. The only evidence remaining from her visit was the sweet, otherworldly fragrance clinging to the air.

Mairi caressed her daughter’s smooth cheek, and the child cooed. “Well, my wee Elspeth, your da will not be pleased to learn the fae guide your future.”
Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon for Kindle:

Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon for Nook:

Just Beyond the Garden Gate for Kindle:

Just Beyond the Garden Gate for Nook:


Giveaway: Dawn Marie will gift a Kindle edition of Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon to a lucky commenter who answers the question: What is your favorite gemstone and why? Be sure to include your email addy. Feeling shy? Email Dawn Marie at Dawn at DawnMarieHamilton dot com. A name will be pulled out of the garden hat on Thursday September 5.


Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Good Morning! Thanks ever so much for having me as a guest on your blog this morning, Vonnie. I love visiting Vintage Vonnie. So I see I made an oops in the post and couldn't decide if September 5th is a Wednesday or Thursday. LOL! I obviously hadn't had enough chocolate when I wrote the post. :)
btw: Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon is now also available for Nook:

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

I'm thrilled to have you. I corrected the double-date issue and added your Nook link, so we're good to go. Wishing you great luck in sales.

Joanne Stewart said...

Okay, I wrote up a post that doesn't appear to have gone through, and I clicked away from the page. Stupid me. So, hopefully, this won't show up twice. lol

I saw V's announcement for this come through her group and ran right over here. You are talking right up my alley. I don't talk about it much, but I have a secret love for healing stones. I have, oh, a good dozen stones or so. I'm very intuitive, I tend to pick up the emotions of the people around me, and for me, each stone has a special quality to it. I wouldn't call what they do as having magical powers, but when I hold them, they have a definite effect on me. One of the first stones I ever bought was a moonstone. It's beautiful and it's energy is soft. I adore it.

Fantastic post. I adore your cover and have added my book to my growing TBR pile. One of the bad things about knowing so many talented writers is that I now have way more to read than I have time for. Wonderful "problem" to have. ;)

Congrats on your release!

Lisa A. Olech said...

I, too, have a love of the mystical quality of stones. I wear a lovely moonstone ring, given to me by the most special woman in my life just before she left this earth. The stone is held by the wings of two silver and gold dragonflies. It is my most cherished possession. Every eve of the full moon, I place it lovingly in the light of the moon to recharge its magical charms. I often carry rose quartz for love, and wear carnelian for courage and creativity. But my favorite stone is my rainbow moonstone.

Your book sounds lovely and magical. It's definitely on my TBR list!

Thanks, Vonnie for another great blog and another great author!!

Lisa A. Olech

Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Thanks so much, Vonnie! You're the best. :)

Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Hi, Joanne. Thanks fo visiting today! Each couple in the Highland Gardens series has a gemstone. In Just Beyond the Garden Gate, the first novel, Patrick and Laurie's stone is sapphire. I love gemstones. My personal favorites are peridot, moonstone and amethyst.

Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Hello, Lisa. What a special gift. I love dragonflies. I have several in my garden made from wire and colorful glass beads. It would be amazing if they were genstones. I'll have to talk to the faeries about that. Enjoy your ring forever. Thanks for dropping in.

Unknown said...

I just bought your book, Dawn, and placed it on top of my very tall TBR list. YAY! So glad I've got it. Can't wait to read it. CONGRATULATIONS!!! I wish you the greatest success with it.

Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Thanks so very much, Cate! Hope you enjoy the fantasy. Dare to dream!

Angela Adams said...

Hello, Dawn Marie and Vonnie,

I'm always happy to visit with my From The Heart Romance Writer friends!

Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Hi, Angela! So nice of you to stop by. :)

Dawn Marie Hamilron said...

Thanks, Vonnie and everyone, for making my visit to Vintage Vonnie such a pleasure. :)

Congrats to Joanne! Watch your email for your gift copy of Just Once in a Verra Blue Moon.

~Dawn Marie

Joanne Stewart said...

I'm very late coming to this. I was very surprised to find a gift in my inbox. For some silly reason, I completely missed your giveaway, so it was a lovely surprise. Thank you so much. I'll enjoy reading this!

Calisa Rhose said...

Very interesting Dawn! Thanks for sharing your bit of research and this cool book. :)