Friday, March 1, 2013

Friday Friend Brenda Margriet

I'm excited to welcome a new TWRP author to Heroines with Hearts today! Please help me give Brenda Margriet a warm welcome!

I'm not a sporty person. I recognize the value of physical activity in order to be healthy, but, let's be honest – it's way more fun to curl up on the couch with a new book and a snack.

I've come to realize I approach physical activity much like I approach my writing, in both action and attitude.

1. Over the years I've swam, jogged and worked out at gyms. Usually things are good for a few months, maybe even a year. And then I fall off the band wagon, and months and years go by as I promise myself that “next week” I'll get back at it. Same thing with writing. My first manuscript took more than ten years to complete. I would work on it for weeks, then something would happen and I wouldn't touch it again for months.
2. I much prefer to “have gone” to the gym than to get up and go. Same with my writing. I love it when I reach my daily goal. But getting those first few words on the page can be a challenge.
3. Getting into a routine is difficult. Falling out of a routine is easy. I try to write every day, and get to the gym three times a week.
4. Flexibility is important. The days I get to the gym vary each week, depending on the family's schedule. But I still go three times a week. And while I want to write every day, the reason I set that goal is so that, if life gets in the way and I can't write one or two days that week, I still have at least five productive sessions.
5. Some days, it's just not going to be easy. There are times at the gym when I think I'm going to die if I take one more step. And then there are times when my alloted minutes fly by. Same with my writing. It is vital to recognize the effort alone is worth it, even if you don't achieve everything you set out to that day.
6. Always keep the end in sight, but remember it takes a while to get there. During my jogging phase, I found a “learn to run 5K” program online. When I started, running for 1 minute would floor me. By the end of 3 months, I was able to keep moving (albeit slowly) through the whole 5K. Same thing with that first manuscript. Once I started working on it consistently, and didn't let anything sidetrack me, I had it done in a few months. My second manuscript took only 6 months to complete. Every day I write, every day I work out, contributes to the bigger picture.

Whether it is working out or writing, it is always fantastic when you can achieve your goals. That manuscript that took me more than 10 years to complete? It became MOUNTAIN FIRE, which was released January 9 by the Wild Rose Press. Maybe I should start training for a marathon...


A mountaintop mystery leads two conservationists to dangerous obsessions and violent passions.

Natural resources student June Brandt climbs Longworth Mountain for some alone time. But when Conservation Officer Alex Weaver arrives to look into the death of a grizzly bear, June is caught up in the investigation--and fascinated by Alex.

Alex is attracted by June's competence and coolness under fire--as well as her lithe body and honey-blonde hair. Although their mutual interest in protecting the natural wonders of the area brings them together, they soon realize they view love from very different angles. He offers passion and pleasure, but June wants more.

When one of Alex's colleagues is murdered, June and Alex must work together to find the poacher before other lives are lost. And Alex must look deep inside to discover if he can give June what she deserves.

For an excerpt and to find out where to purchase MOUNTAIN FIRE in digital or print formats, visit You'll also be able to subscribe to my blog, or follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Thanks so much for joining us today, Brenda! I wish you many sales and much success with Mountain Fire.


  1. Welcome and congratulations, Brenda! This is a wonderful post.

    We could be twin sisters. I have the best of intentions about exercising in the winter. (I have a physical job from May through October, and love feeling strong and in shape.) I start out dutiful, but by Christmas, it's hit of miss.

    Now, spring is coming, so I'll have to buckle down and at least do yoga. Then I'll sweat off Thanksgiving dinner and holiday cookies.

    I'm on year four of my WIP. (Wrote a never-to-be-seen story before that.) I'm determined to finish it and send it out to sink or swim.

    Life does get in the way.

  2. Hi, Brenda, and welcome! You're right, it's difficult to get into a routine, but like you, I've found that that more I push myself, the more rote it becomes and in general (not always) it's easier. I just finished a month-long 30K word challenge and the discipline was great--making me write even when I didn't want to. The challenge is over, but I hope to "stay in shape" and continue the writing--next week!

  3. Thanks for the comments, Jennifer and Ana!

    Does anyone follow the Smart B**ches Trashy Books blog? She is doing Romance Novel workouts for readers. Whenever a something particular happens in the book you are reading (breasts heave, lips are licked) you have to do a corresponding set of exercises. It's hilarious!


  4. Hi Brenda,

    Welcome! Thanks for being here with us. I'm going to have to check out that Romance Novel Reader workout! That should get me into shape for sure.


  5. That sounds like fun! I follow her on twitter, but not the blog. I'll have to check it out.

  6. Hi Brenda - and welcome to HWH, also many congrats on your TWRP release. I must confess I don't really exercise, mainly because my of my arthritis, but I exercise my brain instead!

  7. Sounds fantastic, both the interview and the excerpt. Love the 'honey-colored' rather than the statutory 'blonde.'

  8. Love the writing-exercise comparisons. lol! Love the blurb too.

  9. Great post Brenda,
    Sounds like a great read.I don't know about the 5k run though, I think it would kill me.



  10. Great post, I'll stop beating myself up so much knowing I am not the only one who stops writing when life gets in the way, then suffers paralysis at the thought of jumping back in!

    Well done on your book release.


  11. Thanks for all the great comments, ladies.

    Just back from the gym - and today life got in the way of writing. But tomorrow I'll get back at it!

    I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.

  12. Hi Brenda,

    I love the comparison between writing and working out at the gym. I've never really linked the two but you make a good point that the commitment to both is very similar. Best of luck to you. :o)

  13. It's great to stick it out and finish a work out routine or a manuscript; however, I've come to believe that it is easier to write a novel than to get one published.

  14. Great cover and congratulations on going the distance! Many people say they want to write a book, few finish. Go you!

    Sharon Buchbinder

  15. Thanks for all the support!

    Joyce, it certainly can feel like it is easier to write a novel than get it published. Not to stretch my comparison too far, but you could consider finishing a novel the equivalent of finishing that 5K run for the first time. You might not come in first (that is, get your book published) but you can still benefit from the experience. Good luck!

    And thanks for your comments, too, Katherine and Sharon!