Friday, December 4, 2009


Here's another Christmas title for you! MISTLETOE RULES by Stacey Joy Netzel! Stacy and I got together in cyber space the other day and had a little chat about her newest release. I'm in bold and Stacey is speaking in italics.

So, tell me. What will we love most about your hero?

Talk about a Merry Christmas...there are three heroes in Mistletoe Rules! *grin* Don't tell Eric and Derek, but Mark's my favorite because he's got a great sense of humor and is a little cocky to boot. He also has a wounded side that he hides from everyone under his happy-go-lucky attitude. Getting him to reveal it to Janelle was touching and fun at the same time.

A little cocky and yet he's got a soft underside. Love it! Where did you get the idea for Mistletoe Rules?

Mistletoe Rules started as a cute, fun story at the zoo with a couple of single parents (Eric and Marissa) chaperoning a summer school field trip. Then I introduced Eric's brother, Mark, and couldn't get the man out of my mind, so I decided to give him his own story, along with the youngest Riley sibling, Lisa. Once I decided to write all three stories, I switched it to a Christmas theme. Santa Butch and his wife Judy are named for my parents, Butch and Judy, because my dad used to play Santa for the neighbors when we were kids (older). Having a matchmaking Santa who just might be a little more than what he seems tickled my funny bone.

I did a little research and found out you like crafts! Tell us about your favorite Christmas craft.

I do love crafts. Anything 'snowman' is a hit with me. A friend of mine took one of those old glass blocks that let light in but you can't really see through, drilled a hole in the back and put in a set of colored lights, then painted a snowman on it and edged it with a plaid ribbon--it's so pretty when lit up and one of my favorite decorations. This weekend I signed books at a craft fair with Donna Marie Rogers (my co-author of another anthology, Welcome to Redemption) and it was VERY hard not to buy, buy, buy! Common sense whispered insistently "You only have so much room in the house", and since my Christmas decorations already more than fills the available surfaces, I limited myself to two new grinning snowmen. *happy grin for me*

To get you in the mood for Christmas, here's the book blurb:


Christmas recipe for love—combine a matchmaking Santa, lots of mistletoe, one iron-clad rule, fated hearts; mix and stir. The Riley siblings don’t stand a chance.

Christmas in July at the zoo is the last place single parents Eric Riley and Marissa Wilder expect to find love. Thanks to a little Mistletoe Mischief in the form of their two young daughters and Santa, they discover that Mistletoe Rules are not made to be broken.

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 discovers 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.

When Lisa Riley comes home for Mark's Christmas Eve wedding, her high school rivalry with Janelle’s cousin, Derek Walsh, picks up right where it left off, only this time Derek's got the upper hand. Santa bides his time as these two battle it out because he's waited all year for this Mistletoe Match-up.

And here's an excerpt!

Derek’s hands clenched at his side. Great. Just great, Janelle. He waited for Lisa to gleefully pounce at the opportunity to bury him again, only to be surprised by her dismayed expression.

“I don’t know if that’s such a good idea,” she said.

He should be relieved. Instead, his competitive demon demanded retribution for all the humiliation it’d endured during the old times. He’d bury her. “Why not?” he asked.

Her gaze remained locked on his cousin. “No offense, Janelle, but it seems a little silly. I mean, we’re not in high school anymore.”

Derek relaxed and fell into their old pattern with ease. “What’s the matter, Lisa, afraid you’ve lost your magic touch? Are you not up for the challenge?”

That got her. Her spine stiffened and fire gleamed in her eyes. “Of course I am.”

He fake frowned, nodded his head with understanding, and stage whispered, “I get it.”

“Get what?”

Derek glanced at their captive audience. “Nothing.”

She crossed her arms over her chest and glared at him. He valiantly avoided staring at her increased cleavage. It wasn’t so hard with his grandparents and her brother watching. And her silent demand for an answer.

“I probably shouldn’t say it now. Not in front of everyone.”

Lisa’s eyes narrowed. “Please, do enlighten us—all of us.” Her condescending sarcasm stroked the blood-thirsty devil on his shoulder. Their audience of respective family members waited in expectation. Grandpa, in particular, appeared to enjoy the exchange immensely. This next part would almost make high school worth it. Derek shrugged. “Obviously, it’s me.”

“You?” She infused the single word with an appropriate amount of humorous disbelief and disdain, only she avoided looking him in the eye.

“You’re scared you can’t handle me all grown up.”

The outrageous statement produced the desired laughs—only Lisa’s sounded forced. Her right hand rose to flick her hair back over her shoulder, then smoothed down the length of her burgundy satin dress. Hmm. He hadn’t dreamed his intentional bait would be remotely close to the truth. Derek moved in for the kill. “That’s why you chickened out under the mistletoe.”

The words ‘bite me’ resounded in his head as she glared at him and took a breath to speak. He waggled his finger in the air between them. “Uh, uh. Careful.”

Lisa stepped forward and grabbed his hand. He fought to keep his expression impassive while she bent his finger back just enough to make her point. She leaned close, her breath hot on his lips as she ground out, “You’re on, buddy. I’m going to kick your butt so bad you’ll wish I’d never moved back.”

Too late for that.

Thanks for sharing, Stacey!

Additional excerpts for each story can be found at my website: (Once you've read them, you can head on over to my Contest page to answer a few questions and enter to win a prize.)

Thanks so much for having me on your blog, Emily! My most sincere wishes for everyone to have a healthy, happy holiday season! I'd like to offer an e-copy of my other Christmas novella, Dragonfly Dreams, to one lucky commenter.
Merry Christmas!


Stacey Joy Netzel lives in Northeast Wisconsin with her husband, kids, a couple horses and some barn cats. She works very part-time as a corporate travel agent and spends the rest of her free time writing contemporary romance, because Happily Ever Afters are a must.

Now it's your turn. Since we have a crafty author here today, I'd love to hear about crafty readers! What sort of special Christmas crafts do you enjoy? Oh! And today is my Chatelaine posting day, so please join me there too!


Caroline said...

Good morning, Stacey!

Your book, MISTLETOE RULES, sounds great! Who doesn't love a man with a sense of humor!!

I also love the glass block idea. You've got me thinking. What kind of light was it that you put in the back? I wasn’t quite sure about that. I'd love to try it. I don't do any crafts of my own except decorate the house...LOL

Have a Merry Christmas and good luck with your new book!!


Caroline said...

Oh, hello too to Emily!! :)

Jane L said...

Hello Stacey!
I love the cover on your new book! its so festive!

Im not very crafty when it comes to making little things, Emily sent us these cute little orgami ornaments, I was like WOW! I cant even fold a napkin!
But I will say, I am an artist when it comes to baking! little desserts, Christmas cookies, ect. I go all out with the details and such! Plus its so much fun to eat them! Have a wonderful holiday and happy writing!!

Mary Jo said...


As you know I loved Mistletoe Rules but I felt most drawn to Mark. I think his story was your strongest of the three. That's like saying who's the strongest: Superman, Batman, or Wonder Woman, since Lisa's was the last of the 3.

As for crafts? Me? I have no talent in that direction. I use my sister and sister-in-law for that. :-)

Unknown said...

Hi Emily :)
Thank you for introducing me to Stacey Joy Netzel. I really enjoyed learning about her & her writing. The excerpt was excellent. I've put her on my ToBeRead list. Thank you to Stacey for sharing here today.
All the best,

EmilyBryan said...

Good morning, Caroline! My sister-in-law made me a glass block present to put under the tree. It unfortunately got left in MO with most of my holiday decorations, but it'll be there when we get back.

EmilyBryan said...

Jane--You bake. I fold paper. Guess which my DH wishes I did!

EmilyBryan said...

Mary Jo--Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Stacey's heroes!

EmilyBryan said...

RK--It is absolutely my pleasure to introduce you to new writers!

Donna Marie Rogers said...

Hi Stacey!

Needless to say, I absolutely loved Mistletoe Rules and was lucky enough to get to read it in progress. Being a critique partner has its advantages...LOL

I can guarantee anyone who reads this book will love it. :-)

Oh, and you already know I'm about the least crafty person on the planet. *grin*

Penny Watson said...

Stacey...your books sounds wonderful, and the cover is gorgeous. Good luck! :)

Stacey Joy Netzel said...

Hello everyone! I did not mean to be gone all day. I had an appointment in town and then did some Christmas shopping--it was a pretty productive day! :)

One group reply here:

Thanks for hosting me Emily!

Caroline, a sense of humor is a must, isn't it? For the glass block idea, my friend fed a string of colored lights in, I'd guess a 35 bulb string or less, and not the end-to-end ones, or you'd never fit the plug-in end through the hole.

Jane, I was so excited when I saw my cover, just loved it! So nice to hear others do, too. I'm not super crafty, these days my energy goes into writing, but I used to draw and make lots of things.

Hey Mary Jo, again, thanks for the great Amazon review! Like me, you put your energy into writing and it paid off with Black Ribbon Affair!

RK--thanks for adding me to your list! Even my list has been growing by reading Emily's featured authors this week.

Donna, you're a great CP! Like Mary Jo, your talent shines in There's Only Been You and Meant To Be. I enjoy working with you, despite how we act like sisters. :)

Penelope--thanks so much for the wishes of luck!

I hope you all have a great Christmas this year and thank you for stopping by.

Stacey Joy Netzel said...

Don't forget, one commenter will receive a copy of my 2007 Christmas novella, DRAGONFLY DREAMS.

I'll post the winner and send the e-book out tomorrow! Good luck. :)

Stacey Joy Netzel said...

Oh, and Emily, good news! Last month there were about 3 copies of A Christmas Ball facing out, and today at B&N there were 7. So assuming the best, they had to order more! :)

I forgot to mention that part of my Christmas shopping today included ordering myself a Nook. *VBG*

Anonymous said...

I've only started the first story, Mistletoe Mischief, but I absolutely love Eric! Talk about capable, considerate and cocky, all in one delectable package!
I can't wait to read Derek and Mark's stories!

-- Lori Ann

librarypat said...

Since I love anthologies, this is my kind of book.. The stories sound like fun. I don't do e-books., so don't enter me for the drawing.
We have done many different crafts over the years for Christmas decorations. Usually I was working with scouts or 4-H as well as with my children. One year it was reindeer out of dog biscuits (really cute), another bread dough ornaments and many, many others.
Good luck with the release of MISTLETOE RULES. I'll be looking for it.
Have a great Holiday Season.

Stacey Joy Netzel said...

Thanks Lori Ann! Let me know what Mark and Derek do for you. *grin*

Pat, Mistletoe Rules is available in print from The Wild Rose Press or even B&N/Borders/Amazon, if you'd like to give it a try. I did lots of crafts in 4-H, too. Though my favorite part was taking my horse to the fair every year. The dog biscuit reindeer sound like they'd be cute.

Merry Christmas to you two as well!

EmilyBryan said...

Stacey--Thanks for letting me know you're seeing multiple copies of A CHRISTMAS BALL at your bookstore! So far, I think it's gone over well. (I won't really know for sure till a year from the release date!)

Thank you sooooo much to everyone who's bought a copy!

Sandy said...

Sorry to be so late. I'm just catching up with emails.

Stacey, I'm going to get your book. I really want it.

Stacey Joy Netzel said...

Sorry I'm late with the announcement, but my little kidlet drew Caroline's name as the winner of DRAGONFLY DREAMS!

Congratulations and I'll send it right over!

Merry Christmas everyone!