...in which I share some of my favorite medieval research resources and methods for the benefit of others interested in also writing about the Middle Ages

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012!

The Christmas carol, The Friendly Beasts, is believed to have originated in 12th Century France. Although the English lyrics were written in 1920, it's nice to remember the song's medieval origins. This is one of my favorite modern renditions by Brian Stokes Mitchell and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Rights of warren: permission granted to a knight or baron to hunt small game in the royal forests, such as hares, conies, pheasants, partridges, etc.

(From the Lady and the Unicorn tapestry series, late 15th Century)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Chase: a private forest not under royal forest law, or an area of the royal forest where a knight or baron had been granted permission to hunt big game, such as deer and boar.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Blanchet: a very coarse woolen cloth.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Prime: the second canonical hour of the Catholic Church, after which nuns might listen to readings from the scriptures or lives of the Saints; in 12th Century England, it could fall between 3:40-6:00 AM.

None: the fifth canonical hour of the Catholic Church, after which nuns might eat dinner while one of their number read to them from the scriptures or lives of the Saints; in 12th Century England, it could fall between 1:40-3:00 PM.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Canonical hour: One of seven prayer times observed by the Catholic church during the Middle Ages. During the Equinox, the hours fell as follows:

Matins: 5:00 AM
Prime: 6:00 AM
Terce: 8:30 AM
Sext: 12:30 PM
None: 2:30 PM
Vespers: 5:00 PM
Compline: 7:00-8:00 PM

These times naturally varied throughout the year as the days accordingly grew longer or shorter. To read more about the canonical hours during various times of the year, visit Court Will Begin at Half-way Terce: Keeping Time in High Middle Ages.

Monday, November 5, 2012

InD'Tale Review of "A Candlelight Courting": 4.5 stars and a Crowned Heart!

I was so excited to see this review of my new medieval e-novella, A Candlelight Courting: A Short Christmas Romance in InD'Tale Magazine that I just had to share! Here's a portion of what the reviewer, Beth Chamberlain, had to say:

"What  an enlightening and enjoyably tender read! Though short in length (the only downside of this story), it is long in understanding. The morals and morays of the middle ages are brought out in this story regarding the place of women and their choice of the roles they were to live. In the telling of this tale the dialogue is written with a sensitivity and a knowledge of the history of that time period. As one reads, one comes to understand that some of the things that we have taken for granted, were once very precious to those who came before us, and their sacrifices, hopefully, were not in vain.
Beautifully done, Ms. DiPastena!"

A Candlelight Courting: A Short Christmas Romance is available for only $1.99 on Kindle and Smashwords.

Medieval Word of the Day

Relics: objects venerated as sacred from their association with a saint or martyr.

Reliquary: a container where relics are stored.

Many reliquaries were elaborately decorated. Here's one example of an early medieval reliquary dated from the 7th Century:

You can see another example that I shared with my readers on my JDP NEWS blog: What Am I Writing Now?

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Rosary: a Roman Catholic devotion consisting of a series of prayers spoken in a specific order; includes the Ave Maria and the Paternoster. Also a string of beads that helps the person praying keep track of the prayers.

(From the painting Medieval Pomanders with Rosary, 15th Century)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Paternoster or Pater Noster: Latin words meaning “Our Father,” the first two words in the Lord’s Prayer, often prayed with the Catholic rosary. 

Friday, November 2, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Ave or Ave Maria: Latin words meaning "Hail Mary," from a prayer that begins, "Hail Mary, full of grace," often prayed with the Catholic rosary.

(Virgin Mary and Christ Child, ivory statuette, c. 1260-1280)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

It's time for a new Medieval Word of the Day series! These are all "new" words that I used in my medieval story, A Candlelight Courting: A Short Christmas Romance.

Let's begin alphabetically with the Apostles' Creed: a statement of early Christian belief adopted by the Catholic Church, believed to have been dictated by the Twelve Apostles of the New Testament. The date of its origins are unknown, but it was referred to by the Catholic Saint Ambrose as early as 390 AD.

Click here to read the Apostles' Creed.

(The Twelve Apostles with the Virgin Mary receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost. Artwork dated c. 1460-1480)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Christina of Markyate and "A Candlelight Courting"

I first met Christina of Markyate (born approx 1097) in Who’s Who in the Middle Ages, by Dr. John Fines. Those of you who follow this blog know that this is one of my favorite browsing books about the Middle Ages. (The above link will take you to a book description, but please note that the giveaway is closed.) I read and reread this short biography of Christina for years before it occurred to me to see if I could find a copy of the longer biography cited by Dr. Fines, The Life of Christina of Markyate, a medieval bio by a contemporary of hers translated by C. H. Talbot. Christina, who’s given name was Theodora, became the founder of Markyate Priory in Bedfordshire, England. Her parents were very much set against her becoming a nun and betrothed her to a man named Burthred when she was young. When Christina stubbornly refused to marry Burthred, her parents let the young man into her room one night, hoping he would compromise her virtue and thus force her hand. Instead the next morning, her parents found the couple sitting together chastely having discoursed on religious subjects all night. Burthred and her parents tried several more times to convince Christina to agree to the marriage, but ultimately, Christina escaped and after suffering through many more challenges, became first a holy recluse, and ultimately the first prioress of Markyate.

Dr. Fines and Christina’s anonymous biographer both tell her story in lively, enjoyable styles. Copies of The Life of Christina of Markyate are available on Amazon and other online retailers.

Why am I discussing Christina on Medieval Research with Joyce? Because for years the story of her interlude with Burthred in her chamber intrigued me. In my imagination, I invented many variations of how that evening might have gone and dreamed of someday writing a story of some sort “inspired” by this incident. This summer I finally had an opportunity to do so when I was invited to write a short medieval Christmas story for a romance anthology. When I finished my “inspired by” version, I decided it wasn’t quite what the anthology was looking for and wrote a second story, called “Caroles on the Green”. (Available in A Timeless Romance Anthology: Winter Edition) But I had grown quite fond of my version of Christina and Burthred’s story, so after I finished my anthology contribution, I returned to Christina and Burthred, polished their story up, and published it as a short e-book called A Candlelight Courting: A Short Christmas Story. A Candlelight Courting is not the story of Christina of Markyate, but of a fictional young woman called Christina of Norgate, also betrothed to a man named Burthred. They, too, have a candlelight courting, but with a very different ending than the original Christina’s. Here is the back cover copy:

When Burthred comes courting on Christmas Eve, Meg rejects his advances. She has her heart set on becoming a nun and insists that he call her Christina, the spiritual name she has chosen for herself. She tries to make him swear on her box of holy relics that he will not pursue her, but he carefully words his oath to allow him to stay in her candlelit chamber and try to change her mind.

What Meg does not confess is that her reliquary box holds a secret.

Burthred needs a wife, and no one will satisfy him except Meg. He swore on his father’s deathbed that he would marry her. But Burthred has a secret, too. When they come together before the Yule fire, their shared revelations will either join their hearts together or tear them apart.

A Candlelight Courting: A Short Christmas Story is available on Kindle, Smashwords, iBooks, and Sony, coming soon to Nook.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Norman Conquest Day 2012

I didn't have time to buy a cake for Norman Conquest Day this year, but I wanted to share something with you, so I found this fun website about the Norman Conquest! The Essential Norman Conquest is an interactive website where you can view a 360 degree panorama of the battlefield of Hastings as it stands today, explore 3-D battle maps, compare the clothing of Norman and Saxon knights, and more! You have to install Quicktime to make most of the features work, but this is a fun website if you have it.

Enjoy. And Happy Norman Conquest Day!

Essential Norman Conquest website

(Extract from the Bayeux Tapestry)

Thursday, September 27, 2012

More Medieval Names: Common vs Uncommon

Here they are, as promised. A sampling of common vs uncommon female names from my retyped medieval name list. (Again, all these are taken from The Oxford Dictionary of English Christian Names, by E.G. Withycombe.)


Amabel, Amble, Mabel (12-13 C)
Amice, Amicia (12-15 C)
Basilia, Basilie, Basilla (12-13 C)
Dowsabel, Dowse, Duce, Douse
Edith, Eadgyth, Editha, Eda, Edan
Ella, Ela, Ala, Elia, Hele (common 'til mid-14 C)
Emma, Emme, Emmote, Emmete (11 C)
Gillian, Gill, Jill, Gillot, Gillet


Ann, Anne, Nan, Nanny
Arabella, Orabell
Christine, Christina
Elfleda, Aelfled, Alfled(a), Alflet, Elflet
Elfreda, Elfrid
Violette (S French, rare in England)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Medieval Names: Common vs Uncommon

I recently made an unhappy discovery on my old desktop computer: the file that contains my carefully compiled list of medieval names has become "corrupted!" Fortunately for me, I have a physical printout of the names. Unfortunately, this means laboriously typing the lists into my MacBook so I have a backup copy. (Yes, I could simply scan them in, but I want the flexibility of being able to add new names as I find them.)

My bad luck is your good fortune, since I'm feeling in a sharing kind of mood. Here is a list of "common" vs "uncommon" names in medieval England. These particular names were extracted from The Oxford Dictionary of English Christian Names, by E.G. Withycombe. (Oh, these are all male names. I haven't retyped my list of female names yet.)

Common names:

Acelin, Acelet (common 13 C)
Ancel, Ancelin, Ancelot

Berengar, Bereniger, Benger (12-13 C)

Bernard, Barnard, Barnet (12 C)
Bevis, Beves, Bovo, Bobo (12-13 C)

Brice, Bryce, Bricot (13-14 C)
David (12 C)
Edmund, Edmond
Fulk, Fauke, Fowke, Fawke, Fulcher

Geoffrey, Geffrey, Geoffroi, Geffrei, Geffrai, Jaufre (12-15 C)

Gerard, Gairhard, Gyrerd, Garrett, Garrat, Garit, Girard

Gilbert, Gylbart, Gylbard, Gilbred
Gregory, Gregour
Robert (Rob, Hob, Dob, Nob), Robin, Robard, Robyn
Walter, Wauter, Gualter, Gwalter
William, Guillielm, Guillaume, Willelm, Wylymot, Gillet, Gillot, Gilliame, Guillot, Gilmyn

Uncommon or rare names:

Adrian (12 C on, rare)
Amyas, Amiot (12-13 C, rare)
Charles, Carle, Charlet (Norman, rare)

Dominic, Dominick (13 C, uncommon in England)

Edgar, Etgar (Old English, rare after Norman Conquest)
Edwin, Eaduin (Old English, rare after 13 C)

Egbert (Old English, rare after Norman Conquest)

Emery, Emeric, Emerick (intro by Normans, never common)

Gabriel, Gabrell, Gabryell (uncommon)
Joseph (infrequent)
Samuel (rare)

Tancred (uncommon in England)
Victor (1200s, but rare)

Vivian, Phythian, Fithian (12 C, uncommon)

Warren, Warin, Guarin (rare after 14 C)
Wilfred, Wilfrid (rare after Norman Conquest)

Enjoy! When I retype the women's names, I'll share some with you, too.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cover Reveal: A Candlelight Courting

I just received the cover art for my short medieval Christmas story, A Candlelight Courting, from the always amazing Jaimey Grant at An Author's Art! I think it's beautiful. I hope you do, too!

When Burthred comes courting on Christmas Eve, Meg rejects his advances. She has her heart set on becoming a nun and insists that he call her Christina, the spiritual name she has chosen for herself. She tries to make him swear on her box of holy relics that he will not pursue her, but he carefully words his oath to allow him to stay in her candlelit chamber and try to change her mind.

What Meg does not confess is that her reliquary box holds a secret.

Burthred needs a wife, and no one will satisfy him except Meg. He swore on his father’s deathbed that he would marry her. But Burthred has a secret, too. When they come together before the Yule fire, their shared revelations will either join their hearts together or tear them apart.

A Candlelight Courting: A Short Christmas Romance
Coming October 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

Illuminated manuscripts and medieval bookmarks!

As many of you know, my sweet medieval romance, Illuminations of the Heart, explores the world of medieval illumination. So imagine my excitement when I stumbled across this little interview on C-Span's Book TV! Eric Duncan, associate curator for rare books at the Ohio State University Library, shares with viewers a beautiful illuminated Bible (you'll see why these books were called "illuminated" when you see all that gold leaf!) and an original medieval bookmark that helped the reader keep track of more than just what page they were on. Watch and enjoy! It's only about 13 minutes long.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Calling All Katies: Winner!

Congratulations to Katie Leigh, winner of my Calling All Katies giveaway. Katie has won a pre-autographed copy of my medieval romance, Illuminations of the Heart.

Thank you to all you wonderful Katies or Katie-lovers who entered. We didn't quite hit 110, but 21 Katies isn't too bad!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Calling All Katies

The eldest surviving son of King Henry II of England shared his father’s name. In his lifetime, he was known as Henry the Younger, and after being crowned as co-ruler with his father in 1170 (in imitation of a custom practiced by the Capetien kings of France), was known as Henry the Young King, or simply, the Young King. Henry II allowed his son little actual power, influenced both by his own authoritarian nature and his son’s vain, irresponsible, spendthrift ways. Henry the Younger was nevertheless highly admired among his peers. The troubadour Bertran de Born called him “King of the courtly and emperor of the valiant[1]” for embodying the popular virtues of courtesy and liberality. He loved the tournament circuit and he loved extravagant gestures.

One of these extravagant gestures is related by Robert de Torigny, a contemporary of the Young King. Robert, a Norman monk and chronicler, tells of an occasion when Henry the Younger held a lavish feast and invited only knights named William to attend. A hundred and ten knights named William showed up for the party. (This story is related in Henry II, by W.L. Warren, and Eleanor of Aquitaine and the Four Kings, by Amy Kelly.)

What has this got to do with my call for Katies? Well, as you should know by now, I am the author of three medieval romances, all set during the lifetime of Henry the Young King. In the course of a giveaway for some of my books on my JDP NEWS blog, I made a silly little mistake. A lovely lady named Katie won a copy of my newest romance, Dangerous Favor, but since I was also autographing a copy of Illuminations of the Heart for another winner, I inadvertently signed a copy of Illuminations of the Heart, instead of Dangerous Favor to “Katie”. Never fear. I caught my mistake and Katie got the correct autographed prize in the mail! But now I’m stuck with a copy of Illuminations of the Heart signed to “Katie” and no Katie to give it to.

So, like Henry the Young King, I too am sending out a call…but my call is for Katies, instead of Williams. If your name is Katie and you would like a chance to win a copy of my medieval romance, Illuminations of the Heart, just leave a comment on this post WITH YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS so I’ll know how to contact you if you win.

If you’re not too picky about the spelling of your name, you may also enter if your name bears any resemblance to Katie, such as Katy, Kati, Kaity, Caty, Cati, or even Kaitlyn or Kathryn or anything similar. And hey, if you know a Katie (daughter, mother, sister, aunt, cousin, friend) who might enjoy this book, spread the word or you may enter on her behalf.

Wouldn’t it be cool if we wound up with a 110 Katie entries? However, since Katie isn’t as common a name as William was in the Middle Ages, my feelings won’t be hurt if we only get a handful of Katies.

You may click here to read a summary of Illuminations of the Heart, along with a few Amazon reviews.

Deadline for entries is May 7, midnight PST. Don’t forget to leave your email address! C’mon, Katies, let’s party!

[1] Lyrics of the Troubadours and Trouveres: an Anthology and a History, Translations and Introductions by Fredrick Goldin

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Jongleur: An itinerate minstrel, poet, or entertainer in medieval France

Monday, April 9, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

The Great War: A civil war that took place between Henry II and his sons in 1173-1174; also called the Great Rebellion and the Great Revolt

Henry II (father)

Henry the Younger (eldest son)                                                        Richard I (2nd son)

Count Geoffrey of Brittany (3rd son)                                                King John (4th son)

(John was actually too young to participate in this rebellion, but I thought you might enjoy seeing him anyway)

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Sou: A French coin of little value

Friday, April 6, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Pommel: A counterweight, usually in the shape of a circle or ball, at the top of the handle (hilt) of a sword or dagger, often intricately decorated; derived from Latin word for “little apple”

The circular top of this sword is the "pommel"

(Thank you to Arms & Armor for this image)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

lèse majesté: Literally “injured majesty”; a crime such as treason committed against the king

Go to Google Translate, type lèse majesté under French and click on the little "listen" iconto hear how to pronounce this phrase.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Wardrobe: A medieval wardrobe could be a free standing closet like this:

But in Dangerous Favor, "wardrobe" refers to a room or (for a king or great noble) a series of rooms in a castle that housed his robes, jewelry, and other personal valuables (including spices!), as well as cash and important documents; the King’s Wardrobe included his personal treasury

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Seneschal: Official in a medieval household responsible for the supervision and management of a nobleman’s estates

Monday, April 2, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

mesnie privée: A lord’s inner circle of most trusted knights, specifically those who travel together with their lord to fight in tournaments and wars

I don't know if this king and his companions are riding off to a tournament, but they might be!

If you'd like to know how to pronounce this phrase, go to Google Translate, type mesnie privée under French and click on the little "listen" icon

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Hug a Medievalist Day: Winner!

Are you all having a wonderful Hug a Medievalist Day? I hope you've remembered to do just that. (Hug a medievalist, that is.)

Random.org just drew the winner of my Hug a Medievalist Day giveaway, and the winner of Walk with Danger is....Kari Pike! Kari would like to hug William Tyndale. Considering the fiery end he came to, he could probably have used a few hugs!

Thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway! 

Until next year...huzzah!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Embrasure: The space between two merlons on a castle wall

Embrasure is another word for crenel. Click on the word merlon above to see an example of merlons and crenels/embrasures.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Unlike my previous novels, which took place in Poitou, Dangerous Favor takes place in Normandy.

Normandy: A region of northern France bordering the English Channel, ruled by Henry II of England during the Middle Ages; assigned inheritance of Henry’s eldest son, Henry, the Young King (along with England and Anjou)

Rouen: Capital of Normandy

You can see Normandy on this map directly across the channel from England (D. of Normandie)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Sennight: One week (from seven nights) 

Fortnight: Two weeks (from fourteen nights)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Refuge: Roped off areas set apart on a tournament field for knights to rest or rearm during the combat; also called recets

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hug a Medievalist Day 2012

Last year, I completely missed Hug a Medievalist Day (this font is called trebuchet, which was a medieval siege engine similar to a catapult, so it seems appropriate to use it here) although we did hold a belated giveaway. This year I'm on top of this extraordinarily important date! We're celebrating here at Medieval Research with Joyce by giving away one of my all time favorite medieval novels, Walk with Peril, by D.V.S. Jackson. If you haven't read my review of this book, you can read it here.

Walk with Peril has long been out of print, but I've snagged an old used copy and I'm giving it away for Hug a Medievalist Day! This giveaway is going to work pretty much the same way last year's did: to enter, leave a comment telling me name of the medievalist you would most like to hug on Hug a Medievalist Day. It can be an actual figure from medieval history, a fictional character (like Robin Hood), a character from a medieval novel, a favorite teacher who taught you about the Middle Ages, a favorite character at your local *Renaissance Festival, or even your favorite *RenFest day companion (husband, sister, brother, child, friend). I'll give you an extra entry if you begin your comment with the word "Huzzah!"

(*I'm including Renaissance Festivals because that's the closest excuse some of us can find to play medieval dress up!)

Be sure to include your email address so I can contact you if you win!

The deadline is midnight PST on Hug a Medievalist Day, i.e., March 31. The winner will be drawn by Random.org.

USA entries only.


(Join Hug a Medievalist Day on Facebook and/or follow on Twitter)


USA entries only
Entrants must be 18 years or older
Entries may be left in a comment or sent via email to jdipastena@yahoo.com
Winners will be selected on March 31. Winners have 48 hours to respond to an email notifying them of their win.
Prizes not claimed within 48 hours will be reawarded

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Mêlée: A mock battle between two opposing teams of knights that formed the tournament of the 12th Century

One on one jousting had not yet become popularized in the 12th century. The mêlée, with two groups of knights basically crashing at each other over an artificial battlefield, was the norm. Think "team sports!"

Chaos like in the picture above was the order of the day in the medieval mêlée. Only you weren't supposed to stab anyone's eye out, so that one knight there is being very bad. Although accidents did happen and some knights were killed, that was never the goal. You wanted to capture your opponent and hold him for ransom. Tournaments were intended to be practice for real battle, when stabbing opponents' eyes out would have been perfectly legal.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

In my new medieval romance, Dangerous Favor, my heroine, Mathilde, grants a favor (hence my title) to my hero, Etienne, before he enters a tournament. What is a favor, you ask?

Favor/Token: Trinkets that ladies awarded to knights to denote him as her “champion” in a tournament; favors/tokens might include handkerchiefs, girdles, tassels, sleeves, gloves, scarves, ribbons, etc; these favors/tokens were worn in the knight’s helmet or about his arm and might be kept after the tournament or returned to the lady. 

Here is a picture of a lady tying a favor around a knight's arm.

(God Speed, by Edmund Blair Leighton)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Destrier: A knight’s war horse 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

Surcote: I previously defined the surcote here, but in addition, it was also a tunic worn over a knight’s armor, decorated with the heraldic device of his house 

You can see this kind of surcote in this beautiful painting, The Shadow, by Edmund Blair Leighton.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Medieval Word of the Day

With the release of my new medieval romance, Dangerous Favor, I have some new medieval words to share with you. Since  a medieval tournament plays a large role in my story, let's begin with some of the armor a knight must don for a tournament:

Coif: A hood made from metal rings (i.e., mail), worn beneath a knight’s helmet

Ventail: A piece of mail that protected a knight’s throat and chin

Here's an example of a mail coif
(from CAS Hanwei)

Here's one example of a ventail in the form of a diagonal flap that tied onto the coif to protect the lower part of the knight's face. This flap could be square as well as diagonal.

That looks pretty uncomfortable, especially if all this hardware is worn underneath a metal helmet! Some drawings of ventails show them only covering the throat and chin, like this:

My hero, Etienne, preferred this style of ventail.

View some other parts of a medieval knight's armor from this September 16, 2009 Medieval Word of the Day entry.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

My first live interview!

I've been interviewed on Blog Talk Radio! Don't go away when the line goes dead. It's only temporary. Canda Mortensen gets me back on line and I babble a little longer about writing, research, and more.

Listen to internet radio with iWriteNetwork on Blog Talk Radio

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

"Illuminations of the Heart" Book Trailer

My dear and very talented friend, Rachel Rossano, has made me a book trailer for Illuminations of the Heart. I hope you enjoy it!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Medieval arms & armor

Thank you to my sister for discovering this wonderful internet site I'm about to share with you! Several years ago, she and I visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art. They had an amazing exhibit of medieval armor, and needless to say, I spent a goodly portion of my time wandering blissfully through all that mail :-) I don't recall now whether they didn't have many audio presentations for the exhibit or if I just missed them, but a few days ago, my sister sent me this link simply brimming with fascinating little audio "tours" of Medieval Arms and Armor. Learn how to keep your armor clean (Stop 170), how to handle a two-handed sword (Stop 188), how to handle a crossbow (Stop 199), and much, much more! The blue links include pictures, and all of the audios can even be downloaded to iTunes so you can listen to them whenever and wherever you want.

Click here to go to the Philadelphia Museum of Art audio tours, then enjoy!

(Picture is of Henry VIII's armor from the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.)

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Online Book Launch Party for "Dangerous Favor"!

7 AM February 13 – 7 PM February 14!

Dangerous Favor is having a launch party, and all of you are invited! I’ll be sharing a romantic excerpt in honor of Valentine’s Day, and giving away prizes, of course! And just so more people can attend, I’m starting a day early…Monday, February 13! Entries will remain open through Valentine’s Day right up till 7 PM MST.

My new medieval romance, Dangerous Favor, can’t celebrate without her sister romances, of course, so I’ll be giving away a gift bag each of the following to three lucky winners:

Loyalty’s Web tote bag containing a Loyalty’s Web mug, a Loyalty’s Web notebook, a copy of Loyalty’s Web (winner’s choice of print or Kindle version), a box of candy, and some swag

An Illuminations of the Heart tote bag containing an Illuminations of the Heart mug, an Illuminations of the Heart notebook, a copy of Illuminations of the Heart (winner’s choice of print or Kindle version), a box of candy, and some swag

And of course the star of the party!

Dangerous Favor tote bag containing a Dangerous Favor mug, a Dangerous Favor mouse pad, a copy of Dangerous Favor (only print version available), a box of candy, and some swag

And EVERYONE who visits will get a 2 oz box of candy and some swag (bookmarks, magnets, pen, and a special Dangerous Favor white ribbon)

The party begins at 7 AM Monday on my JDP NEWS blog, so mark your calendars and be sure to drop by!