Tag: novelist

Karen Rose Smith Is Helping Send Books to the Military for the Holidays

USA Today Bestselling Author Karen Rose Smith
USA Today Bestsellng Author Karen Rose Smith

Please join me in welcoming USA Today Bestselling Author Karen Rose Smith! Karen and I are in the same RWA local chapter and she generously agreed to share some of her holiday treats with us.

What do you like to make, bake or create (or purchase!) for the holidays, Karen?

I come from an Italian tradition of cooking and baking, so it was only natural that after I got married and we had our son that I kept up these traditions for Thanksgiving and Christmas. From cookies to pies to filling for cannoli, I enjoy feeding loved ones over the holidays. When we attended a friend’s Thanksgiving dinner last year, I took along two of our favorites—peanut butter pie and pecan pie.

My sleuth in my mystery series creates her own recipes, as does her sister, mom and Nana. My heroines in my romances usually like to cook too. Inventing recipes is something like putting a plot together and I enjoy coming up with original recipes as well as plots for each book. This is one of the recipes I developed just for my readers’ holiday enjoyment. I hope you enjoy it too.

Dessert with Karen
Dessert with Karen


1/2 cup salted butter softened
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
3 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups flour
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
6 oz milk chocolate (I use two 3 oz DOVE bars broken into small pieces or chunks. These bars break or cut up easily.)

Preheat oven to 375F

In a mixer, cream softened butter and peanut butter. Mix in brown sugar and granulated sugar until creamed. Add eggs and mix well. Add cinnamon and vanilla. Add baking powder and baking soda. Blend well. Add 2 cups of flour, a quarter cup at a time with mixer on low speed, constantly scrapping bowl. Stir in the other cup of flour, a quarter cup at a time, by hand until completely blended. Stir in chocolate chips and chunks.

Roll into 1 1/2″ balls, place on cookie sheet 2 inches apart and press down slightly with palm of hand. (I usually put 12 on one cookie sheet.)

Bake 11 – 12 minutes until golden brown and set. (The type of cookie sheet you use can affect the baking time. Darker cookie sheets bake faster.)

Remove from the oven and let the cookies sit a minute on a cool surface. Remove from pan.

Recipe makes about 30-36 cookies. Let cool until the chocolate hardens. Unless you eat all of them gooey warm!

Karen’s latest is A Match Made by Baby from Harlequin Special Editon. Check it out here.

Thanks for stopping by today, Karen! Find Karen in the usual places:

Website: http://www.karenrosesmith.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KarenRoseSmithBooks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/karenrosesmith

Please help me send books to the military! All you need do is sign up for my newsletter here. That’s it, really. Harlequin is sending 1 book for every 20 new subscriptions. Thank you!

Swimming in Jam

Do you ever feel like you’re swimming against the tide? Okay, maybe not against the tide but instead of flying in the current of life it’s tossing you around a bit, maybe leaving a few marks?
I’ve felt like this for a while now and I can’t put my finger on when it started. When we were evacuated from Moscow this summer, due to the smoke from the peat fires? When our stay in the States turned from 4 to 6 weeks and I was out of my routine for too long? When it hit me that life is constantly moving by whether or not I “hop on?”
It really doesn’t matter what caused this type of funk. And I feel guilty even saying it’s a funk. I enjoy life. I took myself and my laptop out into the city today to write this blog–I don’t know many people who can say they took their office out for a trip. Of course, they probably make a lot more money than I do, but that’s another blog (the I’m-not-defined-by-my-royalty-statement essay). It’s 55 degrees Fahrenheit in Moscow Russia on the 15th of November and I’m out here to enjoy it, for heaven’s sake.
Maybe when I was younger I wasn’t as aware of the fragility of life, the reality that we all get older if we’re blessed to live long enough. And getting older means saying good-bye to some youthful pursuits. Self-pity and self-centeredness top my favorite things to say “so long” to.
I must say I love the confidence and sense of knowing myself that maturation brings. It’s liberating and thrilling. The younger me would be horrified to know that indeed, my body can weigh the number of pounds it does–that my figure hasn’t stayed reed-thin and my clothes choices too often fall into the “comfortable writer” category. But the younger me had no clue as to the joys of raising children, dogs, novels, marriages (just one so far, Thank God).
The younger me didn’t notice she was swimming through jam. I was spinning my wheels too quickly to even note if I hit a speed bump.
Today I feel the speed bumps and heart palpitations. But I’m not afraid of any of it–it’s okay, it’s life, and I’m happy to be here.
And that means accepting when I’m treading in thick, syrupy jam. This too shall pass.