Celluloid Diaries: Help an animal this Christmas

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Help an animal this Christmas

I am pleased to hand over my blog today to author Stacey Joy Netzel. She is giving away an ebook copy to THREE lucky commenters (sneak peek below at the prize). 

Hello everyone! I’m Stacey Joy Netzel and I write romantic suspense, contemporary romance, and every once in awhile, I add a paranormal romance in for fun. I also seem to have accumulated a number of Christmas titles now, though it wasn’t on purpose.

Dragonfly Dreams was the first, and then my three mistletoe books, Mistletoe Mischief, Mistletoe Magic, and Mistletoe Match-up came two years afterward. In 2011 I received the rights back from my publisher and re-released Dragonfly Dreams. Family friends were going through a really hard time medically and financially, so I decided to donate all of my royalty earnings for that Christmas book in the month of December to help them out.

I was thrilled to be able to send them a check for $300 in January and have since decided that each December I will pick one of my books to donate that month’s royalties to someone or an organization in need.

This year, the choice is Mistletoe Magic. Why the second book in my Romancing Wisconsin series, you ask? (Even if you didn’t, let’s pretend, shall we?) Well, for one, it earns a higher royalty rate than the first in the series, which means more $ for my charity of choice, and two, my heroine in the story runs a non-profit animal rescue at the old, shut-down resort my hero purchased right out from under her.

Lots of conflict, but it’s a romance, so you know there’ll be a happily ever after. In honor of Janelle’s efforts in the story, my royalties for December from Mistletoe Magic will be donated to the no-kill shelter Happily Ever After.

Happily Ever After Animal Shelter

Their mission: Through the work of the sanctuary and its education, adoption, and spay/neuter programs, the mission of Happily Ever After is to provide both temporary and lifetime care to animals and bring about a time when all the companion animals born into this world will be guaranteed a quality of life in a loving home.

In my book, this is precisely what Janelle tries to accomplish with her animal rescue shelter, but she’s going to have some major bumps along the road—especially when she has to deal with the stubborn new owner. Here’s a brief glimpse of the struggles she faces.

Mistletoe Magic: Major Mark Riley plays Court Jester to Janelle Walsh's Snow Queen at the Christmas Parade and is instantly captivated by the cute redhead whose grandpa just happens to be Santa. When Mark learns she's the tenant he evicted from his newly purchased property, it's going to take a little bit of Santa's mistletoe magic to save their romance.


Two nights later, after a long day spent with the animals in a failed attempt to keep her mind off her new landlord, Janelle stepped from the bathroom in a cloud of steam. The tucked end of her sage green towel slipped loose and she made a quick grab as it began to unravel from around her body.

“Aw, damn.”

The low, muttered curse about gave her a heart attack. She whirled with a gasp and pressed her back to the wall, nearly losing her towel yet again.

Mark Riley stood in the hallway. Her heart thundered in her ears. There wasn’t enough air in the narrow space to fill her lungs.

Then she realized his attention focused below her chin and she clutched the terrycloth covering in a trembling death grip. She glanced down to make sure it covered top and bottom before shooting him a glare.

“What the hell are you doing here?” she demanded.

His brown gaze rose to hers. “I own the place, remember?”

“Like I could forget that lovely fact. How’d you get in? Where’s Duke and Daisy?”

He held up a key in answer to the first question. “As for your dogs, they’re currently enjoying beef strips on the porch. I came prepared.”

His gaze flicked down, up for a split-second, then down again. Heat inundated her limbs, all the way to her toes. She turned toward her bedroom doorway until she noticed he carried a large military duffle bag in each hand.

Suspicion stalled her escape. “What are those?”

“I’m moving in.”

Janelle’s stomach lurched. “You can’t do that.”

He smiled as he started forward. “Of course I can, it’s my house.”

Her fingers tightened on the edges of the towel. She backed into her doorway, less brave now wearing a scrap of cloth with water dripping from her hair onto her bare shoulders than the other day when she’d refused to let him intimidate her. His smart-ass grin made her hold what ground she had left, but he walked past her toward the master suite in the lodge’s private wing.

Suspicion narrowed her eyes and she followed him, flicking her wet curls back over her shoulder. “I know exactly what you’re doing, but it’s not going to work.”

He tossed his bags into the bedroom. After they’d thumped to a halt on the hardwood, he turned back and leaned against the doorframe with his arms crossed, legs braced slightly apart. “No?”

“No.” She refused to let her gaze linger on the bulge of his biceps—or anywhere else. “You moving in will not make me leave.”

His gaze took a blatant journey down the length of her towel-clad body. Goosebumps broke out over her skin. A hint of a smile tugged at his lips when he lifted his eyes back to hers. “Now that’s a real shame.”

The potent combination of his low husky drawl and the heat in his eyes almost made her run to her room and pack her bags. Almost. “Laugh all you want, I’m—”

“Who’s laughing? I’m heartbroken you’re not already on your way out the door.”

She stomped a foot on the hardwood floor. “I’m serious about this. I’ll get my own lawyer if I have to.”

He slipped his hands into his pockets and tilted his head, his expression thoughtful. “How much longer is this conversation going to last?”

My God, he was an arrogant jerk! “As long as it has to—why?”

His thick, dark lashes lowered. “Because that little green towel is a major turn-on.”

Her gaze dropped to the front of his jeans before she could stop it. His low chuckle made her face flush red hot.

Move! her mind shouted.

Still, she hesitated—until reality set in. Retreat was the best option. Her only option, considering she floundered so far out of her depth she couldn’t even tread water.

She spun around and marched to her room, her tattered dignity leaving a pathetic trail. A low groan of male appreciation reached her ears a moment before she slammed her door and her Jello-ed knees refused to hold her straight. She sagged against the wood at her back.

For a second, a brief, insane moment back there, she’d almost stepped toward him instead of saving herself. She closed her eyes and banged the back of her head on the door. Wake up, Janelle! No way in hell this could work out.

After she’d pulled on underwear, socks, a bra and the ugliest pair of sweats she owned, she took a deep breath and forced herself to get right back on the horse, so to speak. Mark sprawled in a chair at the kitchen table with a cup of the coffee she’d set to brew during her shower. Duke lay at his feet under the table, and Daisy sat next to his chair, her head pillowed on his thigh. His large hand stroked her head while he browsed through the pages of a magazine.

What would it feel like to have him stroke me with those fingers?

She stared, mesmerized by the rhythmic caress Daisy enjoyed. Duke’s soft woof broke her out of the dangerous fantasy. Given the state of her traitorous mind, it took a Herculean effort to force her feet forward and face the man.

Not that it mattered. He didn’t even acknowledge her with so much as a blink of an eye. When he continued to flip the pages, she dragged out the chair kitty-corner to him and set it in place with a loud thunk before sitting down. He calmly took a drink of his coffee.

Janelle slapped her palm on the table. Daisy’s flinch sparked guilt, but Mark was the one to calm the dog with a soft murmured word of reassurance. Janelle leaned forward and said through gritted teeth, “We need to talk.”

He spared her a half second glance, then turned another page of his magazine. Something to do with architecture, she noted absently.

“Come on, Mark, this is not going to work and you know it.”

His slow smile stoked her annoyance.

Flip. Silence. Flip.

She reached over, flipped the damn magazine closed, and kept her hand on it while willing him to look at her. “You. Can. Not. Move. In.”

After a long moment, he sat forward, pushed his chair back, and stood. “I’m sorry, I can’t do this right now.”

He grabbed his jacket off the chair and a set of keys from the counter. Her confusion grew. Hands out, palms up, she demanded, “Why not?”

He shrugged into his coat. “Because I just know it won’t be any fun arguing with you while you’re dressed.”

He disappeared into the great room and the door clicked shut before she could get her mind to form a coherent reply. Frustration hit hard when she heard his Jeep start. She slumped in her chair and threw up her hands.

“The man is impossible!”


Mistletoe Magic by Stacey Joy Netzel

Normally I don’t ask people to buy my books, but this time I am. Please get your copy of Mistletoe Magic today while all my royalties for this individual story are being donated to the Happily Ever After shelter. Mistletoe Magic can be found at the following locations: Amazon, BN, Apple, ARe, KoboSmashwords

And if you’d also like to check out the rest of the series, Mistletoe Mischief (which is FREE) and Mistletoe Match-up can be found at the same locations.

Please leave a comment about your favorite charity and I’ll draw three winners for an ebook copy of DRAGONFLY DREAMS.

Dragonfly Dreams by Stacey Joy Netzel

Thank you so much for helping out a good cause, and I hope you enjoy the book/s. Merry Christmas!

About Stacey Joy Netzel

I fell in love with books at a young age, so for me the graduation to writing them was natural. An avid reader and fan of movies with a happily ever after, I am thrilled to call myself a full-time writer after 20 years as a travel agent. I write romantic suspense, contemporary romance, and the occasional paranormal short story just for fun.

I live in my native Wisconsin with my husband and three children, a couple horses and some barn cats. In my limited free time I enjoy gardening, canning, and visiting my parents in Northeastern Wisconsin (Up North) at the family cabin on the lake.


  1. I help collect for a charity that collects pet food to go out to our Meals on Wheels recipients pets. The donated food is collected, processed and repacked in individual servings by a company that employees Mental Disability individuals and then is delivered to people receiving Meals on Wheels for their pets. This helps the animal, the owner and the disabled. It is a win-win-win.

    Thanks for the giveaway and blog stop.

    Bookworm (dot) judy (at) gmail (dot) com

    1. Judy-Ree, Meals on Wheels for pets is awesome! Thank you for doing that. :)

  2. you and your generous spirit. love them both.

    Thank you so very much for joining us for An Aloha Affair last week. How sweet it was to end the month together.

    Our beautiful December team has gathered and we are so excited to invite you to join us for... An Aloha Affair. Come mingle and grow with us, you are always welcome. Always.


  3. What a great cause! I have four dachies and they are like my children alongside my sons! Hope you have a great holidays

    Raonaid at gmail dot com

    1. My mom is a huge fan of the weenies. She had 5 at one time, but they're down to two. Happy holidays back to you, too. :)

  4. What a great cause! I love my animals!


  5. You're welcome-thanks for hopping by. :)

  6. Awesome charity! Anything to help animals, I am all for. Thank you for the hop! Merry Christmas! angadair(at)nwcable(dot)net

  7. Fantastic charity! Thanks for the giveaway!
    stephstime (at) cox (dot) net

  8. Wonderful charity. Just coming by to say hi!!

  9. What a wonderful thing for the author to do and such a good cause !!

    Thanks for popping over to our weekly book blog hop this week xx

    1. Thanks, Sharon! I'm planning to do it every December. Have a great week!

  10. I really love when anyone does something like this, too bad those that can really afford to give, don't. Thank you for the giveaway and for being a part of the hop. Merry Christmas.


    1. What's so great is that a little bit from a lot of people can really make a difference. Thanks so much, and Merry Christmas to you, too!

  11. I would like to thank you for a fantastic book giveaway! In response to your question i would have to say that my favorite animal charity is 'Redwings horse Sanctuary' as they do so much for horses, ponies & donkys that have been mistreated. Cases such as gypsy horses left in feilds or horses that have nearly died due to no food, water or shelter - some of the conditions is apauling. It is also a charity that takes in equines if their owners cannot keep them due to whatever reason or from horse sales & fairs - where the animal would be for slaughter if not.

    Email: lfountain1(at)hotmail(dot)co(dot)uk

    1. Lucinda, Redwings sounds like a great place! (says the owner of 2 horses herself) Thanks for sharing.

  12. I have two favorite charities. The first one is our local no-kill animal shelter called HELP the Animals. I have been working with them for over a year now and give them anything extra I can afford. I also collect empty toner cartridges and pop cans as they get money for them every month. I also take in supplies that they need. I also spend some of my spare time playing with the kitties. They are so much fun. I just recently fostered a kitty that had been there for 5 years. She was very sad and unhappy, she is also special needs. Well, she was a foster failure and is now a member of our family.

    My second favorite charity is Better World Books. I am an avid book reader and collector. This company has new and used books for sale. What I love about them is that for every book you purchase (whether new or used) a book is give to a child who is without. This program sends the books all over the world to help spread literacy. So far I am at 70 books, how cool is that?! There are 70 books in 70 childrens hands somewhere in this world. I love it!

    Thank you for a great giveaway and Happy Holidays!!!

    1. Both sound like wonderful organizations, Kelly. So awesome that just by buying books to read for yourself you can help others. Happy holidays back at ya!

  13. I think animal based charities are the most deserving so mu vote would be for a local Humane Shelter

    1. Carrie, our local Humane Shelters do a great job, too. Thanks for commenting!

  14. ASPCA would probably be my favorite charity or my local animal charity

    1. Great choice, Sabrina! Thanks for coming by and Merry Christmas!

  15. There are so many animals that are abused or neglected. It breaks my heart to see them. Thank you so much for participating in our Aloha Friday Blog Hop!! I am following you, of course!! Wishing you and yours a lovely week!!


    Jean {What Jean Likes}

  16. what a great cause... I am a huge animal lover My dad is like the pet wisperer he saves baby bunnies, foxes, and loves his cat and dogs...I am also and happen to be from UpNorth lol the Northwoods of Wisconsin Antigo area... My parents still live there but we live in North Carolina... Thanks for being part of the blog hop... Happy Holidays

    j.m.platt83(at)gmail (dot)com.

    1. Jeanette, your dad sounds like a great guy. And Yay Wisconsin! I've been to Antigo a few times, and NC to visit a high school friend. BTW, are you a Packer fan? :)

      Merry Christmas back to you!

  17. Animals and Christmas...how could it get better than that?

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

  18. Mistletoe Magic sounds like a wonderful book! One that I would enjoy for sure! Thanks for the chance!

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  19. i would love to read stacey joy netzel's books...love the covers :)

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

    1. Karen, thanks so much for the cover compliment. My cover artist did a great job! Happy Holidays!

  20. I don't really have a favorite animal charity, but I do work with a feral animal society attempting to address the feral population. I really enjoyed reading about your charity.
    planterofhope at aol dot com

    1. I've both used and donated to the feral cat program in my area, too, Carla. Great! Thanks and Merry Christmas!

  21. Okay, today is winner day! The three random winners of an ebook copy of DRAGONFLY DREAMS are:

    Jeanette Platt

    Please contact me at: staceyjoynetzel at gmail . com
    with your email address, and ereader format, so I can gift you a copy.

    Thanks to Vanessa for having me as a guest, and thanks to all of you lovely ladies for participating!

    Wishing you all a Merry Christmas!

    (quick note--I'll be away w/my sisters for the weekend, so I'll reply to emails on Monday)

  22. You can help a young students! Just follow this link and order a paper!