Mia Marlowe

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Mia Marlowe's work has been featured in PEOPLE magazine. One of her books is on display at the Museum of London Docklands next to Johnny Depp memorabilia. Her TOUCH OF A ROGUE was named one of Publishers' Weekly's Top Ten Romances for Spring, but the accolades Mia really loves comes from her readers. Connect with her at her website.

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Garages sales are a time honored way of clearing out the attic while putting a little cash in your pocket. I served as my mom’s garage sale minion last weekend and thought I’d pass along the jewels of wisdom we acquired in the process.

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  • Pick the hottest weekend of the summer. Ok, maybe it’s not the best strategy, but I have to say the near 100 degree temps did not hurt our turn out one bit. Of course it did mean the buyers came out early to beat the heat. I arrived at my folk’s house at 6 in-the-mortal-AM and the first carload of bargain hunters was right behind me. Later in the day, if we’d been thinking, we’d have put a cooler of bottled waters at the end of the drive way and sold them at $2.00 a pop.
  •  Have your sale on a weekend near the first of the month. Well, we didn’t do that either. We scheduled our sale for the first weekend after we got all the stuff we intended to  get rid of together and organized. But the principle is sound. People who are paid monthly have more disposable income right at the beginning of the month.
  • Price your items ahead of time. We had colorful little stickers on almost everything, but every garage sale minion knows those numbers mean next to nothing. Expect to dicker. It’s part of the fun. We did really well with a rack of decorative items by simply announcing to buyers that everything on those particular shelves was only $1.00. After that, the bric-a-brac flew down the driveway. And the clothing table was a hit when we settled on the $1.00 an item sweet spot–especially when we told buyers that a two piece outfit counted as one item!  Shoes sold well when we let people know the right one was free with purchase of the left one. 
  • Help your buyers find what they’re looking for. It’s like Amazon saying “If you like Author A, you should try Author B.” If a guy buys one brass spittoon, be sure he sees all the other brass spittoons you have to offer. My mom unloaded 7 spittoons that way. What she was doing with that many spittoons in the first place remains a mystery, but at least they’ve all found good homes now.
  • Have fun! Be friendly and people will tell you the most amazing things while they pile up your unwanted junk in their longsuffering husbands’ arms. I got a fairly decent recipe for BBQ sauce and a detailed explanation of how to make a poultice for dry eyes just by being a good listener.

fanSeveral buyers said ours was the best sale they’d been to all summer. In two days, my parents cleaned out their odds and ends and put an astonishing $1300 in their pocket. I say astonishing because there were no big items. Nothing sold for over $30.

Which made me wonder why those buyers thought it was such a good sale. We didn’t have a lot of tools or furniture or fancy household gadgets. Mostly we had things my parents no longer needed or couldn’t use, but we offered them with a smile and an opportunity to sit in the shade in front of our oscillating fan and chat for a while. And that’s definitely good.

So how about you? Do you have any surefire garage sale advice to share? What’s the best buy you ever made at one?

Free is always fun. Try the prologue and first chapter of Mia’s newest novel, The Warning Sign by clicking here.

Mia Marlowe

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Mia Marlowe's work has been featured in PEOPLE magazine. One of her books is on display at the Museum of London Docklands next to Johnny Depp memorabilia. Her TOUCH OF A ROGUE was named one of Publishers' Weekly's Top Ten Romances for Spring, but the accolades Mia really loves comes from her readers. Connect with her at her website.

Mia's Website


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Latest Books

Emmaand LucasPeople always wonder where authors get ideas for their stories. My answer is always that they are everywhere. I’ve found a premise in a painting, or a theme in a piece of music.

Sometimes, I draw from the lives of those around me. For example, the idea for my upcoming Christmas novel Once Upon a Plaid, came when my sister served as gestational surrogate for a childless couple.  This is a pic of Emma and Lucas, the precious gifts my sister put in a grateful couple’s arms. It made me wonder how a 16th century couple would deal with an empty cradle when IV technology wasn’t an option.

RachaelandMackFor my newest release, The Warning Sign, I looked even closer to home for inspiration for my hearing impaired heroine, Sara. Due to Meniere’s disease, my dear daughter has lost all the hearing in one ear. It’s not something that can be mitigated with hearing aids. However, she has a terrific attitude. She just makes sure people know which side they need to be on so she can hear them.

It’s hard to be a young person dealing with a problem usually associated with the geriatric set. In The Warning Sign, my heroine Sara lost her hearing to meningitis while she was in college. If she wears aids, she has 60% of normal hearing.  When she doesn’t, the world sinks into a low hum of white noise, clinically described as profound loss. She signs when she teaches her Deaf students and strives to stay ahead of them in the art of speech reading.

The Warning SignSo Sara practices speech reading while she’s stuck in traffic one day–and “listens in” on half of a very disturbing conversation in the side mirror of the van ahead of her. It seems to be a hitman taking a murder for hire contract. When the person whose name she read on his lips turns up dead on the evening news, she realizes she’s better at speech reading than she thought.

Sara has a new guy in her life, but when his family connections bring more questions than answers, she’s not sure who to trust. And the only cop who’ll believe what she saw is her cheating ex.

Want to read an excerpt? Click here.

Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iTunes | Smashwords | ARe

Part of why we read is to feel we’re not alone and to learn how other people deal with loss–loss of all kinds. Even though Sara is dealing with several types of loss, this is a romance, so I promise an HEA. It just may be harder to get there than Sara thinks.

How about you? Have you overcome a loss? Are you dealing with one?

Mia Marlowe

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Mia Marlowe's work has been featured in PEOPLE magazine. One of her books is on display at the Museum of London Docklands next to Johnny Depp memorabilia. Her TOUCH OF A ROGUE was named one of Publishers' Weekly's Top Ten Romances for Spring, but the accolades Mia really loves comes from her readers. Connect with her at her website.

Mia's Website


Social Media


Latest Books

RWA2014 Yep, I was in San Antonio last week for RWA Nationals. At every stage of my career, this convention has met my needs. In the beginning, it was a treasure trove of craft workshops. No one is born knowing how to write a novel, after all, and I soaked it all up like a water-starved plant. Next, it was a chance to pitch my projects and find an agent. After I was published, it became an opportunity to participate in the literacy and publisher signings, hobnobbing with my editors and strategizing with my agent.

cute shoesAt home, my days are spent playing with imaginary people. My feet are up in the writing chair. My dog Mack is firmly snugged by my hip and if I make it out of my jammies, I’m wearing the most comfortable “sluvvies” I can get by with. This week I had to worry about carrying on coherent conversations with real people, behaving professionally and wearing cute shoes.

My days were a blur of networking and meetings.

So on Saturday, my DH, who had been snookered into coming with me, and I played hooky. We walked about six blocks to The Alamo to learn a little Texas history. It really was a whole other country at one time.

LiveOakFor 13 desperate days in 1836, fewer than 200 defenders held off Santa Anna’s thousands of fighters. After they were overrun and killed, their bodies were burned. Since it was the site of so much anguish and suffering, I was surprised to find it such a beautiful and contemplative place.

The word “Alamo” means “cottonwoods” in Spanish. We were more impressed with the long snaking limbs of the prodigious live oaks on the grounds. And besides, “Remember the Cottonwoods!” just doesn’t have the same ring, does it?

Originally it was a much larger compound than is preserved now. The church and barracks are the main buildings remaining. I was a little disappointed to see that the roof of the church was all new.

alamoThen I learned the rest of the story. As it turns out, the Alamo’s church never had a roof. During the time of its construction, the priest had an affair with a local girl. The scandal brought the  building project to a screaming halt. (Can’t help but think there’s a romance premise in there somewhere!)

Anyway, sneaking away from the convention to get my history fix was my guilty pleasure for the week. Next year, the RWA Convention will be held in New York City. 

Wonder where I’ll sneak off to there?

THE QUESTION

How about you? If you travel for work, do you occasionally ditch it to do something fun?

THE PRIZE

‘Fess up and you’ll be entered in a random drawing for one of my backlist books! Winner’s choice! You can comment until Saturday August 2nd. I’ll announce with winner on Sunday August 3rd. Good luck!

Mia Marlowe

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Mia Marlowe's work has been featured in PEOPLE magazine. One of her books is on display at the Museum of London Docklands next to Johnny Depp memorabilia. Her TOUCH OF A ROGUE was named one of Publishers' Weekly's Top Ten Romances for Spring, but the accolades Mia really loves comes from her readers. Connect with her at her website.

Mia's Website


Social Media


Latest Books

slipnslideSummer is a time of endless days, of chasing fireflies and toasting marshmallows over camp fires. I have so many fond memories from when my kids were small, but one summer memory stands out–the day our friends down the block got a slip-n-slide. We’d just gotten the girls dressed up for something–I forget what it was now–and had to leave in about ten minutes. But Daughter #2 wanted to go down the block to watch her friends with their new toy until we had to leave.

I gave her permission along with strict instruction not to get her clothes wet and she hurried off. I busied around getting ready to go to wherever it was we were supposed to be. When we were all set I called my friend to ask her to send Daughter #2 home.

“Um…she’s on her way,” my friend said.

“Oh, good.”

“Well…you might want to get outside to meet her.”

“Why? Did she get her clothes wet?” I asked.  It was the last thing I told her not to do.

“No, her clothes aren’t wet. She’s not wearing any.”

Sure enough, Daughter #2 was hightailing it home, bare as an egg, with her dry clothes held extended before her so as not to become damp should they chance to touch her thoroughly wet little body.

I couldn’t scold her. She had obeyed me to to the letter. We were however late to wherever it was we were supposed to be (which for a railroader’s daughter like me is always a trial but I really can’t remember where we were off to, so it can’t have been that important.)  However, the sight of a naked little girl running home is etched indelibly into my brain.

Once UPon a PlaidWhat’s your favorite summer memory? Share it with us and you’ll be entered in the drawing to win an ARC of my upcoming Once Upon a Plaid.  

Many would count Katherine Douglas fortunate indeed. Laird William Douglas is broad-shouldered, gentle-handed, everything a lass could dream.
But after four years of marriage, Katherine still knows little of what goes on in his heart. And she has yet to bear him an heir. The distance between them is too great—and so she flees over the snowy highlands to Glengarry Castle, home of her childhood, to set her husband free.
But William won’t let his wife slip away without a fight. Before long, he’s at her father’s threshold himself, witness to the rumbles of discontent in Glengarry, the bright joy of Yuletide at a family hearth, and the hidden needs of his own beloved…

Pre-order your copy today!

Mia Marlowe

Once UPon a Plaid

Mia Marlowe's work has been featured in PEOPLE magazine. One of her books is on display at the Museum of London Docklands next to Johnny Depp memorabilia. Her TOUCH OF A ROGUE was named one of Publishers' Weekly's Top Ten Romances for Spring, but the accolades Mia really loves comes from her readers. Connect with her at her website.

Mia's Website


Social Media


Latest Books

Once UPon a PlaidThanks to everyone who left a comment on my What’s New Monday post. The DH has done his algorithm/math thing and come up with a winner for us. Congrats to Anita H! She’ll receive an ARC of my upcoming Christmas novel, Once Upon a Plaid (Kensington, October 2014).

This story was inspired by my sister who served as a gestational surrogate for a childless couple. We’re so fortunate to have access to IVF and new technologies to help deal with infertility, but what would a couple in 16th century Scotland do? An empty cradle was no light matter when a laird needs an heir. And the hollow heartache of empty arms is the same in any century. Somehow, William needs to convince Katherine that their circle of two is enough.

Once Upon a Plaid is available for pre-order now. Hope you’ll love it.

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