Ugly Christmas Sweaters 2015

These are a few of my favorite things, in time to order and get them for your next Christmas party!

Chestnuts Roasting

Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire Men’s Sweater

 ugly sweater“He Sees You When You’re Drinking” Women’s Sweater

Yoda Xmas Sweater

In honor of the new movie…“Santa Yoda” His or Her Sweater (also comes in Darth, R2D2 & Chewbacca)

Go Jesus, It's Your Birthday Sweater

Not for the politically correct “Go, Jesus, it’s Your Birthday” Sweater

Bigfoot Ugly Xmas Sweater

And finally, the ugliest of them all. Sasquatch Santa in a bikini!

You’re welcome…

It’s not about the bologna…

I am back and recovering from my whirlwind trip to Oklahoma where I traveled to celebrate National Bologna Day with the wonderful people of Drumright and the surrounding areas. Now, before any one of you posts a comment on here that says anything close to “Eww, I hate bologna”, step away from the keyboard. I don’t want to read that comment, and I will delete it. Why? Because it’s not just about the f*%&ing  bologna!National Bologna Day at Joseph's Fine Food Drumright OK

Just as the Fourth of July is not just about the fireworks and Christmas should be about more than the gifts, so is National Bologna Day about so much more than bologna, at least for me and in how it’s celebrated in the tiny town of Drumright, Oklahoma. It’s about coming together from near and far, meeting new people and visiting with old friends, it’s about networking and learning, it’s about honoring the past and building for the future.

Okay, lecture over. Now on to the recap of my amazing trip…
Booksigning at Tidewater Winery, DrumrightI loved Oklahoma, more than I expected, and to the point I had a little bit of withdrawal and got sad missing everyone on the plane ride home. Maybe it was how everyone welcomed me, from the Rotary Club who let me speak to them at their meeting, to Jamey & Lizzie Martin and the entire Joseph’s crew who went above and beyond, to the Osterhouts who opened their home for me to stay in and their winery for a book signing, everyone was amazingly kind.

I met incredible people doing incredible things, such as the women from the Human Needs Council, a 501(c)3 operating under the Drumright Ministerial Alliance out of a local Methodist Church that, among other worthwhile things, helps women escape abusive relationships. And the directors of the impressive Central Tech Center in Drumright, celebrating their 45th year and instrumental in providing training and skills to those who need them, whether they be students just starting out in life, or Veterans who need to start in a second career now that their military service has ended.

I have lots of stuff to remind me of my time there and came home with a suitcase packed full. I have pictures of me with everyone I met, a beautiful silver Oklahoma Rustic Cuff bracelet the Martins gave me, a fabulous bottle of wine from the Tidewater Winery owners Toni & C.D., the cookbook gifted to me from the ladies at the Drumright Historical Society, the newspaper and magazine articles featuring stories about the events I participated in, the Rotary Club coffee mug, two new Joseph’s Fine Foods T-Drumright Historical Society Cookbookshirts (one employee literally gave me the shirt off his back because I liked it), and the KUSH 1600 radio station magazines, stickers and T-shirt given me by the KUSH girls after our radio interview.

And of course, there are all the wonderful memories. I finally got to meet John Dollar in person. You might recognize his name from the dedication in some of my Oklahoma Nights and Midnight Cowboys books as one of my consultants whom I’ve known online for nearly a decade but had never met in person. I got to see rodeo announcer Kent Morris again. We’d met in Vegas at the PBR Finals a couple of years ago and he drove all the way from Arkansas just to see me and have a Fried Bologna Sandwich at Joseph’s Fine Foods.

Speaking of Joseph’s, I loved meeting the whole crew who works so hard but always with a smile. And I got to meet the Joseph himself–Joe Naifeh–Jamey Martin’s mentor and the man whose family used to own the restaurant before the Martins took over.

Wheeler #1 Drumright OKIn Drumright, I saw my first working oil well, The Wheeler #1 still pumping more than 100 years later. And I saw my first oil workers eating at Joseph’s… these buff young men were very inspiring, I can tell you. 🙂

I got to tour the amazing wall murals located all over Drumright. They do more than decorate the buildings, they commemorate history, from the Native American population to The Wheeler #1 that started the oil boom that created the town. Even more fun is how Tidewater Winery has adopted the murals as the art for their wine labels.

And yes, I finally ate my first hot, smokey, cheesy, fried bologna sandwich at Joseph’s and had the jalapeno hush puppies, both of which I wrote about in One Night with a Cowboy (Oklahoma Nights)–the book that started the association between this NY author and a restaurant in a tiny Oklahoma town I’d never known existed. So yeah, it’s about the bologna, but it’s so much more.

Sunset over Josephs Fine Foods Drumright

Like the Tidewater Winery on Facebook

Like Joseph’s Fine Foods on Facebook

Like the Drumright Historical Society on Facebook

Visit my Eat Bologna Page for more pictures

I would like to take a moment to mention that my thoughts are with the loved ones of those lost and those injured in Stillwater during the tragedy at the OSU Homecoming Parade. For those who have contacted me concerned, no I was not there that day, but being just miles away the event was uppermost in everyone’s minds last weekend. #StillwaterStrong 

 

Truth in Fiction: Joseph’s Fine Foods

Josephs Fine Foods Drumright OKAs you read this I’m most likely in the air, in route from New York to Drumright, Oklahoma for the National Bologna Day festivities happening there.

Why? Well, those of you who have been readers of mine for awhile One NIght with a Cowboy Special BookClub Edition Hardcovermight remember the story about my writing Joseph’s Fine Foods in Drumright and their now infamous fried bologna sandwich into my USA Today bestselling contemporary western romance novel ONE NIGHT WITH A COWBOY (Oklahoma Nights Series).

I wrote that book in 2012, it released in February of 2013, and since then has been one wild ride for both me and the folks at Joseph’s Fine Foods. Patrons of Joseph’s in Drumright now know me. Readers of mine now know Joseph’s, some have even made a road trip to visit there! All because of that infamous fried bologna sandwich sex scene I wrote into my book.

READ THE FRIED BOLOGNA SCENES HERE (Excerpts #2 & #3)

In August of this year, October 24th was made officially National Bologna Day in Drumright by a proclamation signed by the city’s mayor.

Natl Bologna Day Proclamation

To celebrate, I’m on my way there for the festivities. Events include a 9AM Central Time live radio interview at KUSH 1600 (listen to the live stream HERE) and my speaking to the local Rotary on Friday, and on Saturday a media brunch at Josephs, then a public book signing from 1-3 pm and a costume party at 7 pm both at the winery next door. And sometime during the visit will be my first bite of Joseph’s infamous fried bologna sandwich.

Tomorrow I’ll focus on the Tidewater Winery in Drumright, and its appearance in Three Weeks with a Bull Rider (Oklahoma Nights) so check back.

Cat Johnson National Bologna Day 2015 Event

FUN JOSEPH’S PICS HERE

The Story Behind the Story – Midnight Cowboys’ Rohn

Midnight Wrangler (MIdnight Cowboys Series) Cat JohnsonA lovely email from a reader this morning prompted me to write this post. She had just finished reading Midnight Ride, featuring Tyler Jenkins as the hero and Rohn Lerner as his boss and future hero of Book 2 in the Midnight Cowboys series titled MIDNIGHT WRANGLER.

She was curious to know how to pronounce Rohn’s name, because of the odd spelling with the ‘h’. I totally get that!! I hate when I’m reading a book and I don’t know how the name is pronounced so I decided to clear up the doubt for readers of the series right now.

ROHN IS PROUNOUNCED LIKE “JOHN”

Why the added ‘h’? There’s a good reason.

Picture it… I’m in Vegas for the PBR Finals a couple of years ago (that’s Professional Bull Riders, for you city folk) and my friends and I are sitting in the bar at Mandalay Bay, if memory serves. There are bull riders and fans alike swarming around like bees on a summer day, and good bar real estate was hard to procure but we managed to grab a table and four stools, and the drinks were flowing.

Next to us in that crowded bar sat a sexy older cowboy, his wife, his daughter and her boyfriend. We were tight pack so of course we started talking since we were pretty much shoulder-to-shoulder. Lo and behold, they were all from Alaska, and they were bonafide cowboys, not just men wearing cowboy hats for the Finals. And their names were–wait for it–Rohn and Colton.

Now, being an author, I always warn people up front that anything they say or do will likely end up in a future book, and I warned them right then that I was stealing those names for my next cowboy series–Midnight Cowboys.

That’s how Tyler’s boss became Rohn and his coworker on the ranch became Colton.

Oh, and why the ‘h’ in Rohn’s name? It turns out the real life Rohn is a twin, and his brother’s name is John so his mother put an ‘h’ in the name Ron, I assume so they’d match. Rohn and his lovely wife did the same, adding an ‘h’ when naming their daughter, Tahra.

So there you go, the truth behind the fiction. Oh, and for those who didn’t see my post on Facebook, I finally have all three covers for the Midnight Cowboy series! Here is the mockup for my new bookmarks.

Midnight Cowboys Series by Cat JohnsonThe Midnight Cowboys Series

Johnson is a master at pushing boundaries, and the opening of her Midnight Cowboys series is no exception.”RT Book Reviews

Midnight Ride (Tyler)
Midnight Wrangler (Rohn)
Midnight Heat (Justin)

Go, Cowboys! Ooh Rah!

My life is pretty damn surreal and amazing, if I do say so myself.

In the course of researching and writing 50+ books over the  past 9 years or so, I’ve met some pretty fabulous people, from cowboys, to military, to restauranteurs, who provide me with inspiration and fodder for my stories.

Sometimes, all of those folks collide. And sometimes I get really cool stuff too! Case in point… the lovely folks I met from Oklahoma through Joseph’s Fine Foods in Drumright while researching my cowboy book set at OSU in Stillwater through one of my Army contacts who was then a student there. Add to that one of my old USMC contacts who happened to be a door gunner on a CH-53 and deployed to Afghanistan and you’ve got the makings of a really cool freaking story of how in 2013 a romance writer from NY ordered an OSU Cowboys Pistol Pete flag from Amazon and shipped it to Camp Bastion to be flown in a helicopter appropriately called a ‘Super Stallion” over the Helmand Province during combat operations for Operation Enduring Freedom. The crew reportedly ‘had a little excitement’ during that flight.

Hand to God, it’s all the truth. I’ve got the documentation and the flag and the pictures to prove it. With that, I am proud to wish the OSU Cowboys all the luck in the world this Saturday in their game against Iowa State. It’s a lucky flag. That helo crew can attest to it. 🙂

The OSU Flag aboard  a USMC CH-53 over Afghanistan

The OSU Flag aboard a USMC CH-53 over Afghanistan

The flag & certificate signed by the crew -Aircraft Commander, Co-pilot, Tail Gunner and 2 Door Gunners.

The flag & certificate signed by the crew -Aircraft Commander, Co-pilot, Tail Gunner and 2 Door Gunners.

Oklahoma State Cowboys vs Iowa State Cyclones

#RWA2014 San Antonio, TX – What I did on my summer vacation

My trip to San Antonio, TX was hot (well over 100 degrees daily), interesting, amazing, exhausting, eye opening and unforgettable. I went from meetings with industry professionals at the conference at the Riverwalk, to culinary adventures in Market Square, to a video filming for Amazon Kindle Love Stories and Kindle Worlds, to absorbing local color at the Cowboy Dancehall.  I now know there are more cowboys and tortillas (for breakfast lunch and dinner) in the state of Texas than anywhere else, that Prickly Pears are purple and that you can indeed have bull riding, dancing and live music all simultaneously under one roof. All in all, there were many things learned, new friends made, and old ones revisited and it was well worth the trip from NY and the time spent away from the WiP. Below are a few highlights in pictures.

The River Walk San Antonio TX

The River Walk San Antonio TX

Prickly Pear Margarita at the Kensington Dinner

Prickly Pear Margarita, Kensington Dinner, La Margarita

Bella Andre & Cat Johnson Kindle Worlds Video Shoot

Bella Andre & Cat Johnson Kindle Worlds Video Shoot

Cat Johnson Kindle Love Stories Interview

Cat Johnson Kindle Love Stories Interview

Cat Johnson at the Alamo San Antonio TX

Cat Johnson at the Alamo San Antonio TX

The Alamo

The Alamo

Cowboy Dance Hall PBR Bull Riding

Cowboy Dance Hall PBR Bull Riding

PBR Touring Pro San Antonio

PBR Touring Pro San Antonio

Live Music Cowboy Dance Hall SanAntonio

Live Band, Cowboy Dance Hall, San Antonio, TX

Barnes and Noble and the Case of the Stolen Nook

Just when you thought it was safe… BAM! more WTF-ery hits but this time, it’s not so bad for me because you know any publicity is good publicity. 😉

So here is the PDF to explain what I’m talking about.

Barnes and Noble and the case of the stolen Nook

FYI, the post on the Barnes and Noble Book Blog went up and was removed within about an hour on Friday night, but not before the romance community exploded all over Twitter and Facebook about it.

But we all know things on the internet can never totally disappear, now can they…

July 19th Week In Review – Books and Bologna

YES, JOSEPH’S FRIED BOLOGNA IS REAL!

Eat BolognaYesterday a reader in Oklahoma reported being stopped in a store and questioned where she got the Joseph’s Fine Foods shirt she was wearing. The women said to her, “Do you know that’s mentioned in a romance novel?”

My reader said, “You don’t say? And I’m sure the author Cat Johnson and the owners of Joseph’s will be very happy you recognized the name.” Which is when the reader exclaimed, “It’s real? We thought it was a fictional restaurant.”

After a good laugh, my reader explained it was very real, and just down the road. She gave them directions, told them to try the bologna sandwich and if they were lucky, there might be some cool swag there too. The women explained they were from Enid, OK and were here in the Stillwater/Drumright area for the night. They had just read my ONE NIGHT WITH A COWBOY, and loved it, and had every intention of hitting up Joseph’s today before they leave for home.

How freaking cool is that?!? The power of the promo ‘ho is strange. And this truth is stranger than fiction moment wins as my OMG Moment of the Week. On to the next…

Alpha Bad Boy Bundle

Running a close second to highlight number one above is this… This week marked the official release of our ALPHA BAD BOYS bundle and I’m thrilled to announce it hit #1 at All Romance site wide, and though ranks change hourly, I’ve seen it at #5 at Barnes & Noble and #12 at Amazon, both site wide. Very cool!

The price is about to go up so if you want this bundle filled with 7 full stories from 7 authors for the 99 cent intro price, get it now. I’m truly not being coy by not telling you when the price will go up. It is because I’m not exactly sure. Coordinating 7 authors has been a monumental undertaking and I’ve heard everything from Saturday (as in tomorrow) to next Monday for the price hike and I don’t want anyone angry at me if I promise one date and it turns out to be another. All I can tell you is if you want it, get it now.

Amazon for Kindle

Barnes and Noble for Nook

Smashwords (Multiple formats)

All Romance eBooks (Multiple formats)

Kobo

What will next week bring? God only knows, but I can’t wait to find out!!

Cat

It’s July 4th! Military Gift Ideas for All!

It’s the 4th of July. The year is half over and there are only 173 Days left until Christmas!! And in the rodeo world, this holiday is also sometimes called Cowboy Christmas. So that leads me to a question… Have you started gift shopping yet? LOL

Whether the answer is yes, ma’am, or hell no, are you crazy, woman?! you all know how I like a theme, so I have compiled a list of patriotic items that I’ve purchased in the past month or so. Enjoy!

Uncle Sam Dress on Military Romance Author Cat Johnson  Inflatable Uncle Sam 

UNCLE SAM!!

This is Uncle Sam’s holiday and boy do I have a few doozies for you! A “one-size-fits” all “dress” from China bought on eBay that was too short for even me, at not quite 5′ tall to wear as a dress, so after the picture (Above) was taken, I bunched it up around my waist and made it a tank top for the Book Obsessed Chicks Bookclub BBQ Beach Party I attended last weekend. My shirt/dress would have looked great next to my inflatable Uncle Sam I purchased on Oriental Trading .com. He was actually in the car during the party, deflated in the box, but I wasn’t on my ‘ho game that day.  FYI, for that party I carried a stars and stripe beach bag and made red, white and blue star cookies for the dessert buffet, and my swag giveaway for the goody bags was red, white & blue striped Cat Johnson logo beach balls. Told you I like a theme.

Got Heroes Cat Johnson Beach Ball

GRENADE PAPERWEIGHT!

This is one of those things that nobody needs but it is so frigging cool I had to have it. It’s a real “pineapple” hand grenade (no longer operational, of course). I bought it and some flags off a website. The grenade sits proudly in my writing room. The flags are currently in Afghanistan where plans are to have them flown before they are returned to me. Cool, huh?! (The ‘secret squirrel’ patch was just for fun, a gift for one of my military consultants!) There’s one more gift I recently bought for one of my guys–a USMC bible. Small in size so it can be packed for deployment, imitation leather bound and embossed with the Eagle, Globe and Anchor and his name and delivered in a gift box. It’s sold for all the branches of the service and would make a great gift for any current or former military person in your life.

Cat Johnson's Hand Grenade PaperweightUSMC Bible

That’s it. That’s all I’ve got for you so far. Not a bad start to your holiday shopping list. No?

For those celebrating, have a safe 4th of July. For all of my guys currently deployed and working a 12 hour shift today in uniform and in the heat–I love ya and I thank you for all you do.

Cat

Corsets Live and in Action!

I had such a good response to the Corset 101 post, I decided to do a quick follow up with pictures and invite one of my blogger friends famous for her corsets at conventions to share her pictures.

Here Kitty Kitty Kitty in a Corset 2 Kitty in a corset Kitty tutu RT 2011

MY GUEST KITTY KELLY ON HER OWN CORSETS (Pictured above)

The Here Kitty, Kitty and silver and black corset are steel boned corsets (also me sitting on the floor-it can be done!).  The black with metal chain is a fashion corset-which I cannot wear.  lol It left me with horrible bruising and didn’t hold up the boobs for very long.  lol 🙂


KittyKelly
www.thesmuttykitty.com

Cat Johnson in a US Flag Corset at RT 13Cat Johnson in a Camouflage Corset at RAGT 12

Pictured above, my steel-boned American Flag corset (worn to the RT 13 gala with my combat boots in support of The Boot Campaign) and my green camouflage fashion corset with matching boots at RAGT 13.