Donna Alward with a GIVEAWAY!

I invited Donna Alward, who writes sweet romance. A busy wife and mother of three (two daughters and the family dog), Donna Alward believes hers is the best job in the world: a combination of stay-at-home mom and romance novelist. 

Donna loves to hear from readers; you can contact her through her website at www.donnaalward.com, visit her facebook page, or on Twitter: @DonnaAlward

Workshops offered by Donna

The Business of Writing - an in depth workshop that can be tailored to your particular needs. Addresses both the writing and promotion aspects of career.

Breaking Through Blah - How to bust through flat writing. Includes exercises using your works in progress.

To Agent or Not to Agent - Should you or shouldn't you? The pros and cons of going it alone or with representation.

Piece of Cake: The Recipe for a Satisfying Ending - the crucial ingredients to writing a sigh-worthy, satisfying ending to your romance novel that's as delicious as chocolate cake.

Put it on High Crank: Productivity Tips and Tricks to up your Word Count - tips and tricks to make the most of your writing time, resulting in faster - and better - output.

If any of you is interested in these workshops please ask about them in comments. Now over to Donna.....


One of the challenges of writing what I’d consider “Traditional” stories is making sure they are modern and relevant. Especially with writing westerns, I don’t have a lot of options when it comes to professions. So what I end up doing is looking at ways to make them just a little different. For example, in ONE DANCE WITH THE COWBOY, the hero is running a rescue ranch for horses destined for slaughter.
With growing concerns about the environment and sustainable resources, I looked at new ranching practices for the very prosperous Diamondback Ranch, run by the heroes of my Cadence Creek Cowboys duet (out this month and next). In the first book, THE LAST REAL COWBOY, Sam Diamond has locked horns with his dad over setting up a Biogas facility on the ranch, which would allow Diamondback to produce all its own electricity and thus not rely on the power grid at all. Cool right?
And not far-fetched. I did a little research and found just what I was looking for at Spring Creek Ranch in Alberta! Their commitment to producing a quality, hormone-free product and to stewardship of the land is amazing. Just check it out at http://springcreek.ca/welcome/our-stewardship/
Sometimes we’re all resistant to change – it’s hard to take risks and leave what’s comfortable. Sam’s dad, Virgil, isn’t sure it’s the right thing to spend all the money to set up such a venture on the ranch he spent years building.

More than that, though, he’s worried about becoming obsolete. That he won’t be needed and valued anymore.
I had a great time exploring Sam and Virgil’s relationship in this book, not to mention how Sam feels about Angela Beck, a real thorn in his side. Diamondback Ranch has been his whole life, so he can’t imagine anything or anyone coming along who could possibly be more important than his legacy….
THE LAST REAL COWBOY is out now in North America and in the UK, and the follow up, THE REBEL RANCHER, is out in North America in June and in August in the UK. Please, stop by my website and see what else is coming up- www.donnaalward.com
As a prize today, I’m giving away a kindle version of another very special release I have out this month: THE GREATEST GIFT: A MOTHER’S DAY COLLECTION. It features stories by four Harlequin authors and mine is set in the same setting as the duet – in Cadence Creek!

37 comments:

  1. Your workshops and your books sound great!

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  2. Donna, I love sweet romances, especially as I'm the mother of two young girls aged fifteen and eleven. The elder one is reading romances now and I love reading books I can share with her. I also really enjoy novels which have a postive message to give, especially about the environment and other worthwhile topics. Your books are really good.

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    1. Maria - I love to hear that. My eldest is 14, and when she started reading romance I introduced her to some authors in the line. I love sharing them.

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  3. Hi Donna! (And Riya!)
    Classes and books and kids and Twitter! How do you find time to do it all??? You cover some very important topics in your classes. I'll keep my eye out for your upcoming schedule!

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    1. A very tight schedule. And probably not enough sleep. LOL!

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  4. These workshops all sound very good and helpful!

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    1. Trisha, I keep an upcoming schedule on my website (on my press page). I don't have a lot of dates scheduled at the moment - I've been head down with deadlines, but the latest information will always be there. :-)

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  5. Those sound so interesting, and I love a western themed book!

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  6. Hi Chey,

    Thanks for coming along to read this post. All the best in the giveaway.

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  7. Hi Maria,

    You can't go wrong with sharing a sweet romance story with your daughter. I know, I did!

    Thanks for coming along to read this post. All the best in the giveaway.

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  8. Hi Wendy,

    Thanks for coming along to read this post. I also think of authors as super powers doing so many various things! And Donna also has books coming out with Samhain Publishing.

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  9. Hi Trisha,

    I also think these workshops sound so good. Thanks for coming along to read this post. All the best in the giveaway!

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  10. Hello Shelley,

    Yes, the workshops sound good and Donna's books are great. Thanks for coming along to read this post. All the best in the giveaway.

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  11. I've not read any American Cowboys since Janet Dailey's Americana series. I'm seriously getting tempted by these two books.
    Fi

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    1. Fiona, I LOVE writing cowboys. I'm a farm girl at heart.

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  12. Its look like romantic. :)

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  13. I love just love your books Donna ! I can't get enough of them ! Thank you for the fabulous post and thank you very much for the lovely giveaway !

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    1. Oh, thank you Desere! I love happy readers!

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  14. Donna, your workshops sound like we could all learn a lot from them. I write for children so I'm guessing these aren't for me?

    Your books all look great. I am ordering The Last Real Cowboy. That's my hubby. Ha! (We live on a farm with horses.) *waves* to Riya and Nas.

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    1. Robyn, are you writing for Children or YA? If you're writing fiction of any length there are some tips and tricks that could definitely help. :-)

      Thanks for checking out THE LAST REAL COWBOY - I had such fun writing this duet!

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  15. So interesting to read about how you prepare to write. Just in that blurb, you can tell that you know what you're talking about. :) Best of luck with your books!

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    1. Janet - sometimes it doesn't feel that way, but maybe that's half the fun!

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  16. It sounds like you put a lot of research into your books! :)

    And I have to say, to be independent of the power grid is impressive.

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    1. Isn't it? Spring Creek Ranch (the one I researched) isn't only off the grid, it SUPPLIES power to a number of local homes. Cool, right?

      We've seriously considered trying to go off the grid here, either with solar or wind power. I think if we ever build again, it will be a self-sustaining home!

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  17. Yay for Donna sharing all the goodies she's learned on the writing road with others.

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  18. They are all great workshop topics. The first three sound particularly interesting.

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  19. Hi Leslie and Lynda! I love sharing what I've learned. It's funny, because everyone learns differently, so I know that sometimes you can hear something a lot of times and you don't really get it and then someone puts it a certain way and it clicks. I always hope that happens for someone during my workshops. Plus if I can make things easier in any way, especially on the business front, I'm more than happy to do it. :-)

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  20. Thanks so much for the introduction to Donna! I always enjoy hearing about other writer's journeys. It is a big encouragement to me.

    Have a wonderful weekend! :)

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  21. Donna's workshops sound super. Please don't include me in the drawing...I don't have a kindle.

    Have a great weekend!

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  22. Sounds like she knows a lot of great stuff about writing with the workshops. Her books also sound like they have great, well-rounded characters. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Jessica- it's been very much learn as you go, and then just sharing that with others. Sometimes you can hear the same advice put a slightly different way and it just clicks. I kind of hope that happens to anyone who takes one of my workshops. There are so many ways to learn.

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  23. Love cowboys in romances!! Yay!! And I'm even happier to know there is a ranch like Diamonback in Alberta! Double yay! Take care
    x

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    1. Thanks Old Kitty! :-) Doing research about stuff like that is really interesting and key to keeping my books fresh, you know?

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  24. I used to think of cowboys as old-fashioned, but I like seeing them in modern settings.

    I love the sound of Donna's workshops.

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    1. Old fashioned - hmmm, maybe. I think I prefer Classic. Reliable. Steady. And of course, Sexy! :-)

      Cowboys and ranchers are also businessmen, and sometimes quite the scientists. There's a lot of science in agriculture. Truly a special breed of man, I think!

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  25. How can you not like cowboys? Sexy, sexy, and, er... sexy!

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  26. With the help of random.org Donna Alward chose her winner.

    Congratulations to Robyn Campbell! Robyn, please email Donna via her website about your win.

    Thank you to all lovely people for coming by to chat with Donna. Don't forget, now author Kate Hewitt is with multiple giveaways!

    Special thanks to Donna Alward for telling us about her workshops and sharing with us all here!

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