1. I’m Diane, not Megan; I’m just the person taking Megan’s place today. Megan came to my rescue on Monday when the unthinkable happened. Shudder. My internet was down. FOR TWO DAYS, so I’m taking her day.

2. Here is the view from my deck on Monday when it snowed in the Washington DC area and up and down most of the east coast, Monday being the day I was without internet, I’m just saying.

This weekend they are forecasting temperatures in the 70s.

Looks like I have lots of property, doesn’t it? The ten or twenty feet of woods behind my house is “common ground,” owned by my suburban community. And there’s a development of townhouses on the other side of it.

3. I was dying to blog on Monday to tell you all about my birthday present (we will not speak of what birthday this was). It arrived last Friday…..My Kindle2!!!

Totally extravagant gift. Not a necessity. A definite frill.

My daughter gave me an gift card so I promptly purchased all the Kindle versions of my books (they only had 3). Isn’t that cool how it displays the cover of The Vanishing Viscountess.
My husband gave it to me. His idea was that if HE loved it, I could get him one for his birthday, but he’s not as thrilled with it as I am. His great love is his iphone and a Kindle was not enough to lead him astray.

I also downloaded Regency England by John Plowright, which is really about the political events during the time Lord Liverpool was Prime Minister. 1812 to 1827, longer than anybody.

I also downloaded several free ebooks, including Elizabeth Rolls’ His Lady Mistress, one of the 16 free ebooks Harlequin is offering to celebrate their Diamond Anniversary. You can see the titles HERE.
Books out of copyright are free, too: I downloaded Cecelia by Fanny Burney, The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe, Travels in England in 1782 by Karl Philipp Moritz, The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy, Persuasion by Jane Austen.

There has been spirited discussion of the new text-to-speech feature of the Kindle2. As an author, I totally support the Author’s Guild’s drive to protect authors’ rights in this matter, but as a reader, I have to say this feature is totally cool. The speaking voice doesn’t get the proper inflection of speech all the time, but it does a pretty good job. You can listen to a sample HERE.

I can also download my manuscripts, if I want to, and have them read to me!

I’m sure I’m going to love my Kindle2!

4. My new bookcovers are up on my website, as are two sneak peeks, one of my Undone estory, The Unlacing of Miss Leigh, and the other one is of my novella “Justine and the Noble Viscount” in The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor (also starring Amanda McCabe and Deb Marlowe!)

Okay, I couldn’t resist showing them to you.

So how about you? Any more weather stories to tell? Are your jonquils up? (mine are, but not blooming yet). Does anyone else have a Kindle? Do you love it? Does Diane have every gizmo in creation? Ask me!

Diane Gaston
The Unlacing of Miss Leigh, Harlequin Historical Undone, April 09
“Justine & the Noble Viscount” in The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor May 09

About diane

Diane Gaston is the RITA award-winning author of Historical Romance for Harlequin Historical and Mills and Boon, with books that feature the darker side of the Regency. Formerly a mental health social worker, she is happiest now when deep in the psyches of soldiers, rakes and women who don’t always act like ladies.
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13 years ago

A lovely present! I’m sure you’ll get a lot of fun out of it.

I’m confused about the prime ministers though, I’d have said that Walpole and Pitt the younger both served longer than Liverpool.(Reuters/Downing Street)

Maggie Robinson
13 years ago

Beautiful covers!

I am not a gadget girl of any kind. My husband is forever ordering fancy kitchen stuff off TV. Just give me a sharp knife and a cutting board. It took us days to figure out how to program our indoor weather station (it’s 25 degrees right now.)I feel like a Luddite…I don’t even like my phone.But I have become addicted to my computer and the Internet, so I suppose there’s hope for me!

Diane Gaston
13 years ago

Maggie, that’s where it starts. You are on a slippery slope even if you don’t know it…

Erastes, this is what Plowright said:
“Moreover, Liverpool’s record of fifteen consecutive years of service in the highest office of stat has not been surpassed since it was set in 1827 (Although Margaret Thatcher came close between 1979 and 1990.”

Maybe the operative word is “consecutive” although I couldn’t find a source to verify that. Or maybe Plowright steered me wrong!

Louisa Cornell
13 years ago

I am such a techno idiot that I just figured out how to save numbers on my cell phone. I tend to accept technology VERY slowly. I acquired this, my first cell phone, just last summer in time for Nationals.

I don’t have a Kindle, but my CP does and she is really enjoying it.

My hyacinths are up and some have already bloomed. We had snow on Sunday and today it is supposed to be 80 degrees. Any wonder we all have the sniffles?

13 years ago

Happy Birthday, Diane! And how fun to receive something you REALLY wanted. Life is stifling when one focuses only on what is needed.

Only basic tech stuff here, the computer and the basic cell phone. I like to hold the book in my hands, not to mention my job requires I sit at a computer. I use a book to rest my eyes. However, some of the books I want are only available on ebook (namely yours!), so I’ve learned how to download them with my Adobe Reader.

We hit 88 degrees a few days ago, and are blessedly dropping back down to the low 70s. The desert daisies and poppies and other flowers are out. The explosion of color makes the dull brown the rest of the year more bearable. Always something to look forward to and savor when it is here. The Arizona Highways magazine doesn’t need to doctor pictures; it really does look like that. πŸ™‚

Keira Soleore
13 years ago

Congratulations on a wonderful birthday, Diane. BTW, have you been receiving my e-mails and text messages? Glad you can at least blog.

I’m rushing off for a school drop-off. Will be back to comment more.

Amanda McCabe
13 years ago

I would love a Kindle for travel–I always end up hauling around at least 10 books in my suitcase because I don’t know what I will want to read once I get there! I don’t think it would ever entirely replace “real” books for me, though. It seems easier to look up needed facts in a hurry in a paper book…

88 degrees here yesterday and going to be almost that today!! Lots of jonquils out everywhere, and my lilac bushes had tiny green tips. If not for spring allergies it would be perfect. πŸ™‚

And Harlequin does seem to like those gowns-unlacing covers! I have about 4 of them on my TBR shelf, but who can blame them–they are so pretty πŸ™‚

Susan Wilbanks
13 years ago

I have mixed feelings about the Kindle. On the one hand, I’d LOVE to have one for travel. No more having to guess what I’ll be in the mood to read on a two-week trip, because there’s only so much room in my luggage and books are heavy. And I like the idea of being able to buy a book from my couch and have it there instantly–no waiting for delivery or finding time to go to the bookstore. I’m guessing it’s better for the environment than printing and shipping a book, too.

But then I think about my research books, and how very proud I am that I’m only one shelf short now of having an entire full-sized IKEA Billy devoted to them. Then there’s the fact that anyone who walks through my house is going to know I love books and get an idea of my personality and interests just by skimming the shelves. I’m not ready to lose that pride of ownership and self-expression, even if it were possible to transfer ALL my books to a Kindle today.

Keira Soleore
13 years ago

I’m really not a gadget person. When my PDA died, I went back to the mini-book scheduler and am happier with it. The only thing I miss is not having all my contacts available all the time, but I rarely need phone numbers that are not already on my phone, so the switch is a win. Even on my phone, texting and calling are all I do. The camera feature is useless as are any of the data features.


13 years ago

Let your husband know that there is now a kindle app for the iphone!

Mallory Pickerloy
13 years ago

Diane, those are very cool gifts! I admit to not having anything of the sort. I’m more into the basics.

I must have been abducted, and thought I sent you an ecard for your birthday! How bad I feel…really bad. I had a bad month in Feb and think it got to my brain….. Sooo Happy Birthday in belated but much loved-ness!

You already know how I really liked your new book covers. And the weather here is warm as well and snow melted.

Mallory Pickerloy
13 years ago

Oh, and oddly enough, today is actually my birthday……. πŸ™‚

13 years ago

Oh gosh, I lived at Washington D.C area last year and I never saw that much of snow there. πŸ˜€ I come from Finland, so snow is normal in here, but when I lived in Virginia I was suprised how little of snow there was last year.

Megan Frampton
13 years ago

I want some sort of e-book reader, even though plain ol’ books SHOULD do my just fine.

13 years ago

You can get Anne Radcliffe books on your Kindle2?!

I think it’s time I start entering some contests, lol!

Cara King
13 years ago

Happy Birthday, Mallory!!!

And Happy Belated Birthday, Diane!

I’m not much of a gadget person myself. Though I wouldn’t say no to a working rice cooker. πŸ™‚

BTW, I love the cover on that anthology!!!


13 years ago

Happy Birthday Mallory!

And belatedly same to you, Diane. (We share the same B-Day.)

Congrats on your awesome gift. Enjoy. Tech gifts must’ve been in the air. My dh surprised me with an HP Mini. It’s the cutest thing.This writer’s going mobile!

Diane Gaston
13 years ago

Oh, janegeorge, that’s the other gizmo I want!!! I’ll bet you will just love it.
And happy belated birthday to you!

Thanks for the birthday greetings, Mallory, Keira, Cara, and Judy!

Judy, I’d love to see the desert in bloom!
And, O Doggie One, I’ll bet the hyacinths smell wonderful. Lilacs, Amanda? Mmmmmmmm.

Keira, I’ve emailed you. Hope you get the messages.

Christine, I told dh about the kindle ap for the iphone. I think that will do just fine for him. He likes reading on his iphone.

Susan, I still love my research books. I envy your new bookshelves.

Milka, each year we usually get one or two snow storms like the one this week. Except the last few years we’ve had hardly any snow.

Megan, I’ll have to see if I read more with the Kindle. I thought that I would.

Santa, I love that I can get the old books, like Mysteries of Odolpho. Maybe I’ll actually read them!

Megan Frampton
13 years ago

Oh, and forgot to say–the new covers are totally stunning! Congratulations on them!

Diane Gaston
13 years ago

Thanks, Megan!

Elena Greene
13 years ago

Happy birthdays, Diane and Mallory! Congrats on the lovely covers, Diane.