Sparks Fly on the Fourth of July!

Today Lisa Lickel, the hostess of Clash of the Titles, highlights some of the fabulous inspirational tales (and authors) that, in the spirit of the fireworks that are the emblem of this weekend's holiday, have romance sparks flying! 

From some of our authors and friends of Clash of the Titles, we bring you the very best ways to create that romantic moment…fiction…and not! Enjoy the magic.


Deborah Kinnard

While working on a recent book (Powerline, reissue from Desert Breeze Publishing, September 2011), Deb was struck with a great way to have her characters fall in love. They would share a festival with the other dwellers in their small Illinois town. What better way for characters to complete the process of falling for one another than to wander through the fete, eating ice cream and manning the dunk tank?

Her characters liked the scenario just fine. A hot day, a cool night, good friends, a blanket under the trees – what’s not to contribute to falling in love?

- Deborah Kinnard, former honorable mention at Clash of the Titles

Seasons in the Mist, Sheaf House - winner, Grace Awards 2010

Timeless Romance, Transcendent Faith 

Learn more about Deb at her website, 


Diana Lesire Brandmeyer

When Diana’s 15th wedding anniversary came up, she was in the middle of rehabbing a house for a flip. She hadn’t had her hair cut in six months and forgotten she even owned girly clothes. Everything was covered in paint, plaster and paint. She didn’t feel the least like a woman, much a wife. Diana and her husband agreed: no presents or cards--there wasn’t time to shop. 

The day arrived; she came home from a day of grouting. Her husband came home soon after, grunted something in her direction and went in the other room. Diana thought he said, “Happy Anniversary,” so she said it back, equally lifeless. 

He came back into the kitchen. “You know I love you, right?”

“Yep, I love you too.”

“I know we said no gifts.”

Her heart sank. He’d broken the rule.

He handed her a velvet jewelry box. “I didn’t want to wait until our 25th.”

Inside she found a beautiful diamond ring. 

“The three diamonds represent our children and the gold band is us. I couldn’t have asked God for a better wife.”

In that moment, Diana became a woman and wife again.

- Diana Lesire Brandmeyer 

We're not Blended, We're Pureed, A Survivor's Guide

Stringing 26 Letters into Stories

Learn more about Diana Lesire Brandmeyer at her website:


Nike Chillemi

Nike comes from an eastern European background and her darling husband is of Italian extraction, yet they love to fire up the grill on the 4th of July, put on some Caribbean music, and wave a spatula around while doing a few moves in time to the beat. After they survive the dance exhibition without throwing a disc out of whack, they sit and pig out.

Nike remembers a long-ago Independence Day celebrations when she and her husband were young and newly in love. The fireworks going off in the sky could not compare to the fireworks going off when his gaze locked onto hers. Oh, be still, beating heart. There is nothing like young love… or the memory of young love.

Nike finds it so exquisite when love lasts a lifetime. She gets such a kick out of an elderly couple holding hands as they walk down the street: there is great hope and promise in that sight.

 - Nike Chillemi 

Burning Hearts, Desert Breeze

Crime Fictionista 

Learn more about Nike Chillemi at her website:


Elaine Marie Cooper

And last and most entertaining comes a reflection from a former Clash of the Titles champ for…what else, but Most Romantic Moment from her book, Road to Deer Run

Elaine’s personal fireworks story is not a super clear memory, she says, but it occurred on or about the 4th of July, 1975. She and her husband had only been married for three months and were still in honeymoon mode. In fact, she says she doesn't remember the bottle rockets and sparklers that year because they were having our own sparkling moments at home. Nine months later their first son was born. He was their Bicentennial Baby—a true Fourth of July, Yankee Doodle Dandy!

- Elaine Marie Cooper

 The Promise of Deer Run — coming in September

Revolutionary Faith

Learn more about Elaine Marie Cooper at her website:


We hope these thoughts inspire you to have a sparkling holiday and of course, be sure to check out Clash of the Titles to meet more great authors!