Thursday, January 10, 2019

Introducing Constance Bretes by @JoanReeves #RomanceGems

Grab your coffee or tea and come join us for some exciting news.

I'm happy to tell you we're welcoming a new Romance Gems Author to the blog— Constance Bretes.

About Constance Bretes

Constance Bretes (most people call her Connie) is from Alabama. I should qualify that.

Connie and her hubby just moved to Alabama from Montana last May. Connie writes Contemporary Romance and occasionally Romantic Suspense. She has 8 books released, and about 5 or 6 in various stages of editing.

Connie's latest book was a Christmas Romance. You can check it out below. She's now working on another release for February 2019.

In Connie's Own Words

I'm married to my HEA, Jim, and four years ago, we moved from Michigan to Montana after I retired from 38 years of civil service work in Michigan.

Montana was supposed to be our retirement home, but it didn't work out. So we moved to Alabama due to my health—I loved Montana, but I just couldn't breathe there!

I have a stepson, still in Michigan, and we have 3 cats who live with us. When I'm not writing, I love to basket weave, make jewelry, fiddle on my piano, and read.

Right now, my craze is reading billionaire contemporary and erotic romances. Who knows? Next week it may be military romances. *LOL*

Find Constance Online

G+ (even though it's going away March 1)
Instagram: constancebretesauthor
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How Constance Bretes Became an Author

Sometime in 2011, my husband came to me and told me that I should become a romance author. He’d been watching The Hallmark Channel, and noticed some of the shows were actually written by authors.

I read a couple of Harlequin romances, and I was surprised at how much they had changed from when I used to subscribe to them back in the 1970s. I had this tale spinning around in my head and decided to try and write it.

I wrote the story, and then put it away for a while. The next year, I started researching Romance Writers of America (RWA) and checking out different places that would help a new writer to get started.

I relied heavily on Harlequin’s “How to Submit A Story” page. The story I wrote originally, I sent to Harlequin following their strict instructions, but each time I submitted, it got rejected. I had joined the Mid-Michigan RWA group and was expressing my frustration with Harlequin repeatedly rejecting me.

At that time, I had absolutely no concept of the craft of writing. A fellow author, Roseanne Bittner, said she would read the first three chapters and give me some guidance. After she read it, she said that the story had merit, but I was writing it too fast. I needed to slow down and share the surroundings, feels, and tastes.

In 2013, I submitted my manuscript to Beachwalk Press. Three weeks later they wrote back with a contract offer. The Editor said I still had a lot to learn about the craft of writing, but I had a good story, and she could spot a talent. There was a lot of editing involved in the story, but in 2014, they published my first book, Delayed Justice.

For Your Consideration

The Christmas Ballet by Constance Bretes

Can the joy of Christmas heal the pain of the past?

Laura Hemmingway cut herself off from men and her family when the man she loved married her sister. She moved across the country and was doing just fine until she received a devastating call to return to New York.

She had to face the death of her sister, her sister’s little girl, Maria, and Maria’s father, Stefan—the man she had once loved. She figured she would pay her respects and leave as soon as possible. She never anticipated on the beautiful little girl stealing her heart. And she never expected that seeing Stefan again after twelve years would stir up old feelings.

Stefan’s life was complete. He had a successful career as an attorney, a beautiful wife, and an adorable six-year-old daughter. Although he and his wife had been married in name only for the past several years, he cared for her deeply. Her unexpected death brought him face-to-face with his former lover, and the guilt he’d carried for years.

Can a little girl’s love, and the true magic of Christmas, help Stefan convince Laura to stay and give their relationship another chance?

(Content Warning: contains some sexual content.)

Add The Christmas Ballet, available at Amazon, to your Library!

Thanks for joining us today.
Come back every day for a great post from a Romance GEMS Author!


  1. Great interview! Although I've known you since you joined MMRWA, I learned much about your career history. It's wonderful you found an editor who believed in you. Wishing you continued success.

    1. Thank you, Diane. And for visiting too. I enjoyed my time with MMRWA and wish I could still be a part of it.

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you, Liz. This seems like a really nice group.

  3. Welcome, Connie. Glad to have you here.

  4. Lovely interview. Congrats on finding an editor who believes in you! Best of luck with your new release.

    1. Thank you, Marissa. Beachwalk Press and Pamela Tyner are the best.

  5. Lovely to have you join us, Connie. Love your how-I-published story!

  6. Great interview, Connie! I love hearing about how my fellow authors got their start.

    1. Thank you Alina. I like to hear about how authors got their start too.

  7. Connie, I'm so glad you joined us. It's going to be such a fun year.

    1. Thank you Joan, for inviting me. I think it'll be a great year too. I'm excited about it.

  8. Great post, I enjoyed learning more about you. Best wishes and congrats!!


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