Thanksgiving~ my favorite time of year because it’s always the start of something new and exciting. Usually in a Nanowrimo sort of way.

However, last November instead of starting a new story, I was feverishly polishing my RWA Golden Heart© entry, Howlin’ Hearts. Boy, what a life-changer that decision became.

When Spring came around, I learned my entry had finaled. Excited, dazed, and more than a little shocked, I made last minute plans to attend RWA-NYC to participate in the the Golden Heart© activities. I should mention, I had never visited NYC, so the trip was one in a lifetime. Although I hope to return to NYC in the future, nothing will beat my inaugural visit coinciding with the elation of being a GH finalist. Plus, I sat next to JILL SHALVIS (mad love for her Lucky Harbor series) at the Ritas and Golden Hearts Award Ceremony, and we cyber-shopped for glasses (before the show) because ours vanished. Mine poofed right off my face. One minute I was wearing them, the next–gone in thin air.

Fan girl moment with Jill Shalvis

Awesomest fan girl moment with Jill Shalvis

If being a GH finalist on a whirlwind tour of NYC and meeting up with my favorite author weren’t enough to be grateful for (although it totally is), a few short weeks before I left for NYC, my GH entry caught the attention of a New York editor, and was contracted for publication. Yep, that’s right. The manuscript I timidly submitted to the GH contest on a wing and a prayer, in a few short months will roll off the presses and into online bookstores, retitled as Awakened by the Wolf. 

So, this November, I’m thankful for the amazing opportunities I’ve had this year, the exciting experiences I’ve shared with family and friends, for wet noses and doggy kisses, and Talenti’s Double Dark Chocolate gelato. Best of all, I’m looking forward to a new year and awesome adventures.

Wishing you and yours ….happythanksgiving




On November 20, 2015, the Official Kristal Hollis Website will launch at

At that time, this blog will discontinue. A heart-felt thanks to all who followed me here, and I hope you will continue to follow me at my new site where the adventures will continue.


Much love, and may happy tales be forever in your heart.


May 11, 2015 began like any ordinary work day. Up at 4:30 am, hair and make-up completed by braille, dogs fed, Hubster fed, and backed the car out of the garage by 5:20. Cruised to work on auto-pilot. Noticing the Blue Bandit was low on fuel, and that I was a few minutes ahead of schedule because of light traffic, I decided to fill the gas tank after I had already turned in the opposite direction of the station.

As I drove down the dark road, I passed a sneaky sheriff deputy parked in the median with his lights off. Hubster thinks I drive like a bat-out-of-hell, so I prudently checked the speedometer and wondered where he gets those ridiculous notions. At the first opportunity, I u-turned and puttered back by the deputy’s car. Hahaha! I hoped he didn’t think I was driving suspiciously.

Stopped at the intersection, I figured out that I was in the wrong lane, and turned right on red which is allowable in Florida, but with the PoPo lurking I got a little nervous.  I finally made it to the gas pump and fished for my purse, only to come up empty-handed.

Oh, crap! No purse meant no wallet, no driver’s license, no insurance card. AND, a block away sat a sheriff deputy who could probably sense my catastrophe.

Paranoia set in. I’m going to get a ticket, I’m going to get a ticket, and I’m going to run out of gas on the home way. Because, when I say the Blue Bandit is low on gas, what I really mean is “The gas fumes are about to run out, y’all.”

Inching the Blue Bandit past the deputy for the third time, I aimed my best Jedi mind vibe at him. “This isn’t the suspicious car you’re looking for. She can go about her business. Let her move along.”

Petrified, I arrived at TDJ without incident and reached for my phone to call Hubster. My blood congealed. Not only had I forgotten my purse, I’d left my phone on the kitchen counter.

I was unplugged from the universe at large. How would I get through the day without a watching a cat video on Facebook? Or checking personal email? Oh, my God! I wouldn’t get any text messages.

I was facing a technological zombie apocalypse. My guardian fairies refused to materialize my phone, no matter how much I begged through-out the day.

At the end of the work day, I thought, “Hahaha! Wouldn’t it be funny if today, of all days, was the day I got THE CALL and didn’t have my phone to answer it?”

I laughed all the way home. (It could’ve been the gas fumes.)

In IM withdrawal, the first thing I did when I entered the house was treasure-hunt my phone. I might’ve hugged and kissed it, but I can’t be sure because I got distracted by the missed call from a strange number and the glaring voice mail alert. Thinking a telemarketer had called, I hit play to clear the message.

Then I heard Ann Leslie Tuttle’s message and I nearly dropped my Precious, errr my phone because Oh my freaking God! , Harlequin Nocturne’s Senior Editor had called.

“It’s Harlequin! It’s Harlequin!” I knocked Hubster on the shoulder hard enough to push him over and interrupt his live video gaming.

Hubster remarked, “I don’t read romance, but even I know who Harlequin is. This is good, yeah?”

“This is very good!”

In my excitement, I couldn’t hear the phone number Ann Leslie provided, so I needed to replay the message. Only, I accidentally deleted it instead.

Holy crap! I lost my very first CALL message. Oh, the horror. Oh the devastation!

Oh, the lack of sympathy from Hubster, who snarked, “How did you lose the message all ready? Wait, I forgot who I’m talking to.”

Running around the kitchen, I hollered, “What do I do? What do I do?”

Hubster said, “Hit the call back for the missed call.”

Oh, yeah. I knew that.  Apparently unexpected excitement turns me stupid.

I immediately connected with Ann Leslie, and my day ended on a higher note than it had started. I’m pleased to announce that I have sold my paranormal manuscript HOWLIN’ HEARTS to Harlequin Nocturne in a two-book deal.

So, even bad starts can lead to big grins. And, I haven’t stopped grinning yet.

In further news, after a pow-wow with our cell service provider, Hubster was able to restore my deleted CALL message which is now hanging in a place of honor in my “cloud.”




The Romance Review