Saturday, February 1, 2014

First Kiss: Ginger Simpson Shares Ellie's first kiss... Pucker up Ellie! @mizging @KMNbooks #giveaway #firstkiss


KAREN: In Ginger Simpson's tale, Ellie's Legacy, Ty challenges Ellie to a shooting contest. Bets were off the table, but Ty has a clever way of showing Ellie just what he would have wagered. Pucker up Ellie. You both won this day!  

****GIVEAWAY: Ginger is offering a free copy of Ellie's Legacy (PDF) to one lucky reader. Read on and find out how you can win this delightful story.

GINGER SIMPSON: Friday was always film day in the fifth grade.  I had the biggest crush on Mickey Cully.  To me, he was one of the two cutest boys in school, and he'd actually been letting me wear his baseball cap all week, which was a sure sign that he liked me back.  During recess, my teacher, Mr. Cook pulled me aside and asked if I'd close the room darkening curtains in preparation for the movie.  To do so, one had to walk behind the plastic draperies and tug them together with a thick cord.  I had some unexpected help.  Mickey had followed me behind the curtains, and when I turned to express my surprise, he very abruptly, and without any ceremony, pressed his lips to mine, in my very first boy/girl kiss.

We all read about tummy butterflies in romance novels, but I'm here to tell you that this one innocent kiss set a whole passel loose in my stomach.  The kiss didn't last very long, and it certainly wasn't one worthy of a novel, but at that time in my life, I was floating on a cloud.  Mickey Cully had kissed me, and for the moment, I didn't even care about the rumor floating around that he ate dog food sandwiches for lunch.

SET UP FOR THE SCENE in Ellie's Legacy: Ellie is a total tomboy, jealous of the new foreman.  She's been practicing with a gun she purchased in order to show her Pa she can do anything Ty can do, and better.  This is a scene where they ride out into the country, after he's challenged her to a contest.

FIRST KISS from Ellie's Legacy by Ginger Simpson:  

Ty had already tethered his horse and busied himself setting up a line of cans along a fallen log. Ellie found a stump and sat, her heartbeat sounding in her ears. Ty straightened from his task and glanced over at her. “You ready?” 

She stood on wobbly legs. “I…I guess.” 

“You don’t sound too convincing. We can call the whole thing off if you aren’t feeling sure of yourself.” 

Oh, that irritating tone in his voice. Call it off? Not a chance. She could do this—she had to do this. Besides, his attitude was downright insulting. “I’m quite confident about my abilities, thank you.” Ellie spoke through clenched teeth. 

She brushed by him and walked toward the target area. With a glance over her shoulder, she feigned confidence. “So how are we going to do this?” 

Ty came and stood shoulder-to-shoulder with her. “We’ll take turns. I’ve set up the first six targets. I’ll go first so you get the idea.” 

Ellie stepped to the side to give him room. 

Ty’s gaze focused on the cans lined atop the log. Beneath the brim of his dusty hat, determination knit his two brows into one. He widened his stance and rested a hand on the butt of his revolver. 

As soon as his gun cleared leather, a blaze of gunfire ensued. With lightning precision, Ty masterfully downed five of the six cans, and re-holstered his weapon. With a cocky smile, he turned to Ellie. “Well, I must have been distracted on that last one, but five out of six is pretty good, seeing as how it probably only took ten seconds or so.”

Ellie exhaled. There was no denying he’d done a good job. Her heart really started to pound. What if she wasn’t as skilled as she thought? While watching Ty set up six new cans, she mentally pictured her makeshift target filled with holes made by expertly placed shots. The whole time she fought rising nausea. 

Ty strolled back. “It’s your turn.” 

Her stomach clenched. 

“Thanks. I kind of figured that,” she snapped, surprised by her snippiness. This was her idea, not his. She swallowed hard, determined to mellow her tone. “Could you do me a favor?” 


“Can you please stand back a little ways?” She motioned over her shoulder. “It distracts me to see you out of the corner of my eye.” 

“Sure, no problem.” He backed up a few paces. 

It didn’t help. He was distracting anywhere, anytime. Oh, if only her mouth didn’t get her into these messes. 

Ellie swiped at the beads of perspiration on her brow. Despite the brisk air, the pressure of the moment burned beneath her skin. She wiped the offending moisture on her pant leg, broadened the distance between her feet, and readied herself. She briskly rubbed her palms together, and since they were in the perfect position, she took a brief second to mutter a silent prayer. Please God, don’t let me make a fool of myself. 

With determination, she eyed the cans and locked her fingers around the rosewood grips. Recalling exactly how she’d riddled the floral material at the old mine, Ellie drew her weapon and fired. One after another the first four bullets found their mark, but the last two dug deep into the earth beyond the log. Two cans remained. Ellie’s jaw tightened as she shoved her weapon back into its leather restraint. 

“Not bad, not bad at all. I’m impressed.” Ty said, with a smug grin. 

Perhaps it was his attempt at a compliment, but it sounded more like taunting. 

She turned and gave him a forced smile. “You don’t have to rub it in. You won, I lost. It’s as simple as that.” 

“I’m not rubbing anything in. I thought you did a good job under the circumstances.” 

“And what circumstances are those?” 

“You-me…a shoot-off for the first time. I didn’t expect you to hit anything.” 

“Well, thanks for the confidence. I am only a woman, after all.” Ellie seethed inside. 

“Ah, Ellie, don’t get mad. That’s not what I meant. You wanna try again?” 

Her mind screamed no, but her mouth overrode the warning. “Sure, set ‘em up. Why not shoot at the same time this round.” 

“Really?” He eyed her suspiciously. 

“Set ‘em up, I said.” Ellie reloaded her revolver, wondering why he stirred her need for rivalry. 

When would she learn? She’d seen Pa put a mouthpiece on mares that nipped. Maybe she should wear one to keep her words in check. Her competitive nature was going to be the ruination of her. 
Ty fished inside the burlap sack and produced the last ten cans. He spaced them perfectly atop the log, then returned to stand beside her and reloaded his own gun. 

Again he assumed his shooting stance. He grasped his gun butt and turned to Ellie. “So, on my go. I’ll take the first five, you take the last. Are you ready?” 

Ellie sucked in a breath and got into position. Her heartbeat pulsed in her temples, but she maintained a steady hand. Her only thought was showing Ty what she was really made of. She tensed, but remained focused. 

“Go.” Ty’s body reacted to his own cue.

Ellie’s gun cleared the holster. Her rapid gunfire synchronized with Ty’s, sending one can after another leaping into the air and tumbling to the ground. Her last shot sounded just slightly after his, but when the last bullet was fired, only one can was left upright—one of his. 

She holstered her gun and did a little dance. “I got ‘em all, I got ‘em all.” 

Suddenly, she stopped, realizing her reaction belied her statements about being an adult. With hands on her hips, and a cocky tilt to her head, she asked, “So, Mr. Bishop, what have you got to say for yourself now?"

Ellie delighted in the dumbstruck look on his face. She’d matched him shot for shot. Maybe she’d taken a split second longer, but she’d knocked down all her cans. Wasn’t that what counted? What she set out to do? 

Ty still hadn’t said a word. He kept staring at the log as if expecting his one remaining can to fall, or for one of hers to jump back up on it. Ellie couldn’t stand the silence, and containing her need to gloat got harder by the moment. 

“Well, aren’t you going to say anything?” Her lips curved into a smug smile. 

He shrugged. “I’m not sure what to say. It looks as though your practicing has paid off. Good thing we didn’t really wager anything on it.” 

She erupted into uncontrollable laughter. It couldn’t be helped. Her glee at proving she could shoot, and at this moment, better than him, was cause for celebration. She covered her mouth to stifle her levity. It seemed overly cruel to rub it in too much. 

“And…just what would you have wagered?” Her curiosity piqued. 

Without a word, Ty closed the distance between them, gathered her into his arms and covered her mouth with his. Her eyes widened, and a gasp of surprise parted her lips enough for his tongue to dart inside to mingle with her own. Shivers of delight coursed through her body, turning her knees to jelly. Her startled eyes slowly closed and she melted into his embrace. 
Just as she started to revel in the moment, he pulled away and held her at arm’s length. “That’s what I would have wagered,” he said matter-of-factly. “Too bad I lost.” 

With a grin, he turned and began gathering up the strewn cans and putting them back into his burlap sack. 

Ellie stood, frozen to the spot, her fingers tracing her mouth. Her heart raced. She’d dreamed of the moment he’d kiss her, but this was nothing like she had imagined. It happened so quick, over and done, but it was still magnificent. His lips were so soft, yet demanding, his embrace strong, but tender. She took a deep breath. 


Tomboy, Ellie Fountain is determined to stop the conniving neighbors from their plot to take her father’s land. She’s an only child, Fountainhead is her legacy. The handsome ranch foreman, Tyler Bishop, is a burr under her saddle and a barrier to her future. Her pa treats him like the son he never had, and Ellie is jealous. She’s out to prove she’s as good as any man at ranching… but her biggest threat may not be the polecats that are killing the cattle and taking potshots at her….it might be her heart.


***GIVEAWAY: Ginger is offering a free copy of Ellie's Legacy (PDF) to be delivered to one lucky person's email, drawn from those who leave a comment here on February 1st.  Thanks for stopping by and enjoying "First Kiss"  I hope Ellie's experience prompts you to want to read more.

Ginger Simpson and her husband, Kelly, moved from California, where she was born and bred, to be near her grandson, Spencer in TN.  She's been writing since 2000, with her debut novel published in 2003.  Since then, she's written cross genres with hopes of producing reads everyone can enjoy.  

She retired from the University of California in 2003 to devote more time to helping Spencer who is autistic and find more time to write.  As happens to some retired people, they find they were much more organized when they worked full-time.  Ginger says she can't seem to tear herself away from Facebook.

If you'd like more information on Ginger, then you can follow these links:

Or you can just Google "Ginger Simpson" and see what pops up.  


Margaret Tanner said... Best Blogger Tips

Great excerpt Ginger, but I would expect nothing less from a talented author like you.



Jerry Costlow said... Best Blogger Tips

A wonderful scene. I love when the man and woman are engaged in some sort of contest before the big payoff.


Kathleen Rice Adams said... Best Blogger Tips

Ginger, I love the way you illustrated "write what you know" by juxtaposing your experience with this excerpt. It's funny how some things stay with us forever, unavoidably worming their ways into our fiction decades after the event, isn't it? :-)

The scene is delightful. Thanks for sharing it!

Sarah J. McNeal said... Best Blogger Tips

I love the story ablut Mickie from your childhood. Dog food sandwiches? Really? Kids can be so mean.
I loved this excerpt. The way Ellie cannot containt her eagerness to best Ty reminded me of mine own difficulty shutting my mouth. LOL
All the best to you, Ginger.

Ginger Jones Simpson said... Best Blogger Tips

I"m honored to be the "kick-off" author for Karen's "First Kiss" event. I want to thank each of you for commenting and being so warm. It's been a tough week, and today is what I need to get my mind elsewhere.

Hugz to you all, and I can't wait to read more about "First Kisses."

Roseanne Dowell said... Best Blogger Tips

That's so sweet, Ginger. Sounds like a great book. Thanks for sharing.

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips


Thanks so much for participating in the First Kiss event. After reading your snippet, I know I want to know more. What a sweet way to sneak a kiss. :)

Victoria Chatham said... Best Blogger Tips

Love it! And now I want to read the rest of the story.

Sheila Claydon said... Best Blogger Tips

What a lovely first kiss memory Ginger. And what a lovely follow up with Ellie's first kiss.

Kathy Fischer-Brown said... Best Blogger Tips

Your first kiss was the first thing I read this morning, which gave me my first chuckle of the day. Great way to start a Saturday!

Charmaine Gordon said... Best Blogger Tips

Touchdown for Ginger! What a delightful First Kiss and second First Kiss. after years of working as an actor, I turned creative juices to writing and here I am, the Grandma Moses at 83 writing about sexy seniors and younger having fun and moving along.
Thank you for a good moment and laughter, dog food sandwiches, indeed.

Debra St. John said... Best Blogger Tips

Love it! Sounds like they both won!!

And I love your kiss-behind-the-curtain...sure, maybe not an entire novel, but definitely worth writing a scene about cute!

Cathy said... Best Blogger Tips

What a sweet excerpt! Love westerns, too!

cnickol at verizon dot net

Katrina Gillian said... Best Blogger Tips

Enjoyed the snippet! Makes me want to read more. :)

katrina gillian at gmail dot com

Savanna Kougar said... Best Blogger Tips

Ginger, your delightful excerpt reminded me of my own tomboy days... and all the boys I bested. May Ellie have her HEA.

Jacquie Rogers said... Best Blogger Tips

Whew! Ellie's got something to think about now. Loved your anecdote, too.

Ginger Jones Simpson said... Best Blogger Tips

Drum Roll, Please!!!! I had my husband pick a number and the winner is, Cathy. I'll be sending your copy of Ellie's Legacy via email today.

Thank you for stopping by and entering a comment. Hope you enjoy the rest of the book.


Ginger Jones Simpson said... Best Blogger Tips

I sent your book. If for some reason you don't get it, let me know.


Sarah J. McNeal said... Best Blogger Tips

Congratulations, Cathy!

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips

Congratulations, Cathy!!