And we’re back!

If you’ve been following along, my fellow baseball romance author Jean Jochim and I have been posting World Series trivia each of the last few nights. If you’d like to check out our previous posts, please go to:

1) Jean’s blog
2) My previous post

Before I post the answers to the questions in my previous post, let’s add a couple more questions.

1) The Dodgers weren’t originally based in L.A. What year were they established and where? When did they move to L.A.?

2) Did Vin Scully actually throw out the first pitch before Game 2 of the 2017 World Series? Who caught the first pitch?

And, 3) In CALLED OUT, book #3 in my Calling It series, Vin Scully is mentioned along with Harry Caray, Red Barber, and Bob Uecker. Of those three, who was famous for saying: “It could be, it might be… It is—a home run!”

Now that you have those questions to ponder, here are the answers to the questions I posted the other night.

Question: How many teams have come back to win the World Series after being down 0-3 in the League Championship Series?

Answer: 34

Question: How many times has the winner of the World Series been decided in the 7th game?

Answer: Just once. As they said on SB Nation: “It’s the 2004 Red Sox, and then it’s everyone else.”

See https://www.sbnation.com/2016/10/17/13313812/baseball-teams-down-0-3-in-a-postseason-series-history for the full rundown.

QUESTION: The trivia question that seals Dorie’s fate in CALLING IT — “This player led the Yankees in RBIs in every season from 1949-1955. Name the player and, as a bonus, name his claim to fame from the 1956 World Series.”

And here is the complete passage from CALLING IT, with the answer included:

But it was the last question that was a knife to Nate’s gut. The one that he knew was coming, but hoped against hope would prove his doubts wrong. His heart came to a slow, painful stop as the words came out of Lola’s mouth. “This player led the Yankees in RBIs in every season from 1949-1955. Name the player and, as a bonus, name his claim to fame from the 1956 World Series.”

He wanted her to bungle it. To give an answer just about anyone else in the world would give hearing those words. Mickey Mantle. Joe DiMaggio, hell, even Babe Ruth, although the timing was off by about twenty years. So many famous Yankees that even a Red Sox fan knew them all; so many names that someone could throw out and think they had a shot of getting it right. But what most people didn’t realize was that the man whose quotes provided laughs on a regular basis was also one of—if not the—greatest catchers of all time.

“Yogi Berra,” Dorie answered quietly. “He caught Don Larsen’s perfect game.”

Once again cheers erupted around her, but all Nate could do was close his eyes and breathe.

If you’re interested in finding out why this was such a turning point for Dorie and Nate, well, you’ll need to read the book. 😉 You can get it and the rest of the CALLING IT series on Amazon, iBooks, Barnes & Noble, or Kobo.

I’ll post the answers to the next set of questions in a few days. In the meantime, check out Jean’s posts at http://jeanjoachim.blogspot.com.

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So Jean Joachim and I were recently chatting–us both being baseball romance authors, as you know–about the World Series coming up and doing some posts to go along with it. Since one of the key scenes in CALLING IT (book #1 in my Calling It series) takes place during an epic Trivia Night bout at the local bar and grille, I am happy to follow up Jean’s post last night with some Trivia of my own.

This happens to be a personal favorite of mine, for reasons that I’ll elaborate on in my Friday night post. But for now, here goes: how many teams have come back to win the World Series after being down 0-3 in the League Championship Series?

And as long as we’re at it: how many times has the winner of the World Series been decided in the 7th game?

Let’s do one more, this one being the trivia question that seals Dorie’s fate in CALLING IT:

“This player led the Yankees in RBIs in every season from 1949-1955. Name the player and, as a bonus, name his claim to fame from the 1956 World Series.”

I’ll post the answers on Friday. In the meantime, check out Jean’s post from last night at http://jeanjoachim.blogspot.com. And she’ll be posting round 3 of trivia tomorrow night.

To learn more about CALLING IT, see http://www.jendoyleink.com/books/calling-it-calling-it-1/.

I am thrilled to announce that CALLING IT won the “Contemporary Romance, Published” category of the Mid-Michigan RWA’s 2017 Best Banter Contest. A huge THANK YOU to MMRWA, and congratulations to all of the other winners.

Want to read the passage I submitted? Please read on (spoilers ahead)…

THE SET UP: Nate Hawkins is the superstar catcher for the Major League Baseball expansion team, the Chicago Watchmen. He’s been at the Derek Jeter level of stardom for almost half his life—and he’s been librarian Dorie Donelli’s celebrity crush for pretty much that entire time. When he returns to his small town of Inspiration, Iowa, and circumstances bring them together, Nate falls almost immediately. Lust at first sight turns dangerously close to love in no time at all. Since Dorie’s been in love with him since the age of 14, however, it is unbelievable to her that he could truly feel that way after a mere matter of days. And although she’s entirely on board with a short-term fling, under no circumstances will she allow herself to go any further.

Having agreed to a weekend in Chicago with him, she’s been fully thrown into his world after an all-night poker game with some of his fellow superstar cohorts followed by an unexpected encounter with Nate’s ex-fiancee. As far as she’s concerned, that all just goes to prove her point. Nate, on the other hand, sees it in a different way entirely.

 

FROM CHAPTER 17

Was there anything the man wasn’t good at? Dorie honestly didn’t know how she could walk, much less run nine miles, yet here they were on mile two and she was on such a high from all that amazing sex she’d been having that she felt like she could go ten times that without breaking a sweat.

“Are we going to talk about this?”

She glanced up as he ran next to her, which was something she’d been trying very hard not to do. She still wasn’t entirely sure what she was doing here.

He misunderstood her silence. Rolling his eyes, he said, “Are you going to tell me I think like a girl again?”

She wasn’t, but that would be as good an excuse as any. She shrugged. “There’s nothing to talk about.”

And there wasn’t. That was doubly clear after last night as the men in his world had closed ranks around him—supporting him, reclaiming him. And then Courtney, of course, pulling him back to the land of Nate Hawkins, and reminding Dorie that the Nate of this fantasy didn’t truly exist. That even if it did, guys like him did not get all hot and bothered for women who meant what they said when they threw out things like, I don’t want to be the queen of your world; I want to be the king of mine.

But that didn’t mean she wasn’t determined to enjoy the rest of the weekend.

“How about we start with Courtney?” he asked, as if putting small-town librarian Dorie in the same category as a trust fund heiress slash morning news anchorwoman made sense—which it didn’t. She knew that, Courtney knew that, everyone in the hemisphere knew that; it was only Nate who didn’t seem to.

Though she felt his glance she didn’t look up to meet it.

“So it didn’t bother you that she basically had her hand down my pants when you walked in.”

Dorie’s cheeks flushed and she found herself running faster. Of course it had bothered her. It had been a slap in the face. But Dorie wasn’t going to tell him that. “If I were her and I’d done what she did to you and was trying to get you back, then I’d probably be putting my hands down your pants, too.”

“Jesus,” he said, obviously irritated. “Do you even want to try to make this work?”

She stopped running. Hadn’t they already had this conversation? “Make what work?” For heaven’s sake. “We’ve known each other for four days. There isn’t a real this to talk about.”

“Five,” he corrected, coming to a stop and glaring down at her.

“Okay. Fine. Five.” Whatever. She’d give him the half hour from Tuesday night even though it was technically Wednesday morning by the time they’d actually begun talking. “Do you have this conversation with all the women you sleep with before you’ve known them for a week?”

His eyes flashed with anger. “I’ve never had this conversation with any woman before. I’ve never wanted to have this conversation. Why do you refuse to believe that?”

He truly needed her to spell this out for him?

She jabbed at his chest. “Because you get paid millions of dollars in a year and I can barely scrape together my car payment. Because you go to benefits for a thousand dollars a plate, but the best dress I own is from the Anthropologie clearance rack. Because…” Oh, hell, no tears. Please, no tears. “Because your ex-fiancée is the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen and she wants you back.”

And when he was bored with this little interlude into normal life—which he would no doubt be the second he was on his way to spring training—it would just be Dorie all by her lonesome, watching House Hunters marathons and bingeing on ice cream again. After blowing her chance to finally do something with her life because she’d spent all her free time following him from place to place rather than stay and do the job that she’d left her whole family behind for.

But she wasn’t going there with him. She wasn’t going there, period, because this was only a short-term thing. Only sex.

Goddamn. The tears won. She angrily brushed them away.

As he started to protest, she cut him off. “And even if you don’t want her back, too, there’s another hundred women just like her waiting to beat down your door.” Wrapping her arms around herself, Dorie took a step back. “And I don’t want to always be in a competition for the man I lo—”

When he looked up sharply, she realized what she’d almost just said.

Oh, double Goddamn. “You know,” she mumbled, wanting to kick at the ground but settling for rubbing her toe in the dirt instead. “If it ever became more than sex.”

“At the risk of getting my balls chopped off…”

Kneed,” she corrected, glaring up at him only to see his eyes practically dancing with laughter.

Undeterred, he carried on, “Kings are always fighting off someone.” He raised his hands in surrender as her jaw dropped. “Just saying.”

But then he got serious, wrapping his arms around himself as well—they were like the poster children for the Body Language of a Tense Conversation. The gaze he directed toward her was an appraising one. Assessing. He swallowed hard, then looked down at the ground.

“Okay,” he finally said, raising his eyes and giving her a look so piercing that she took another step back. Then he turned away from her and started running again.

Um, well, good. Glad he was on board.

They were practically back to his building when he finally spoke again. “You need to know something. I’ve lived half my life like this, and sometimes I can’t even believe it. And you’re right—the women…” His voice trailed off as he shook his head. “That part has been beyond surreal.”

He slowly came to a stop, waiting for her to draw up next to him. “But it’s been fifteen years, and in that whole time…” He shook his head as he looked down at her. “You say I’m going to get tired of this. I say maybe I’ve waited my whole life for whatever this is. And if you think that you scared me off by saying you want to go all alpha on my ass?” He grabbed her by the elbows and hauled her close. “Then you’d better start coming up with a better excuse. Because you are so off base you aren’t even on the field.”

Then he leaned down and owned her with a kiss so searing it left her breathless. When he pulled away, he smiled. “I also think that the reason you’re resisting is because you’re afraid I’m right and you’re wrong. So maybe you’d better man up and get over it so that we can get on with our lives.”

Still thrown by the kiss, it took Dorie a few seconds to realize what he’d just said. She sputtered, “Did you just… Did you just call me chicken? Is that your idea of romance?”

That made him laugh. He gave a shrug and then reached down for her hand, looking both ways as he stepped forward to cross the street. “Maybe I’ve been taking the wrong approach. Maybe the only way for me to convince you that—”

He stopped suddenly, his eyes on a cluster of people in front of his building. “Shit.” He let go of her hand and dropped down to one knee to tie his shoe. “Please don’t take this the wrong way, but I have to pretend that I don’t know you. If I thought it would do anything other than make your life a living hell, I’d take you with me. But right now, I have to go.”

Then he was off and running down the street, leaving her standing there. Bewildered. Breathless. She opened her mouth to call his name, but realized someone else had just done that for her. And suddenly the small group of people turned into a frenzied mob, swallowing him up into a sea of flashing cameras and shouted questions. Their intensity was frightening, even from here. With a deep breath, she sank back against the wall behind her and closed her eyes.

He’d just torn the rug out from underneath her, shaken it out and then laid it back down in front of her, daring her to take that step.

She squeezed her eyes shut and brought the heels of her hands up to them. It was a one-night stand. A weekend, at most. This was too much, too soon. She didn’t want something with complications and concessions and compromise.

So rather than attempt to make sense of any of it, she pushed off the building and started running again.

 

Like what you read? You can order CALLING IT now at: http://amzn.to/2yfxanw 

 

#99cents sale baseball romance Calling It

You know what’s awesome? Being on this list of Carina Press sports romances with my friends Michele Mannon, Elizabeth Harmon, Allison Parr, Kate Willoughby, Kat Latham, and Lynda Aicher:

This Spring’s Must Read Sports Romances
http://carinapress.com/blog/2017/04/this-springs-must-read-sports-romances/

 

You know what else is awesome? CALLING IT is on sale for 99¢ through August 24.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2o60zxh
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/CallingItBN
iBooks: http://bit.ly/CallingItDoyle
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/calling-it-1

#99cents sale baseball romance Calling It

 

Baseball player Nathan Hawkins needs to get away from Chicago. After a near career-ending car accident and with paparazzi surrounding his penthouse, Nate can only think of one place to go: home. But when he finds his old apartment occupied by a half-naked woman wielding a baseball bat, he’s not sure what to think…except that maybe his luck has finally changed for the better.

Librarian Dorie Donelli never thought she’d get to meet her fantasy man in person–much less while she’s wearing her bathrobe. To her surprise, her nearly naked run-in with Nate leads to more unclothed encounters. But Dorie is sure their fling is only temporary. As long as she remembers he’ll be gone once his life gets back on track, she won’t get hurt. In the meantime, she throws herself into enjoying their three weeks together before he has to report for spring training and go back to his old life.

For Nate, being with Dorie is the only time in months that he finds himself smiling. Laughing. And he has no intention of letting that go. He might even befalling in love…if only Dorie will let him say the words. What they have isn’t just a dream, but the start of a dream come true.

 

Read more about CALLING IT (including the unpublished epilogue) on my Books page.

You know that saying, “It never rains, it pours?” Well, this week is kind of like a monsoon.

It’s a *good* monsoon–don’t get me wrong! (If monsoons can be good, of course. And I should probably stop the analogy right there.) But, well, let me list what’s going on…

1) This week’s HUGE news is that my novella, CRUSH, which is part of the launch for Marina Adair’s St. Helena’s Vineyard Kindle World is going live on Wednesday. I just now finished up my cover reveal over in the FB Group (you can see my Cover Reveal/Giveaway 1 and Excerpt/Giveaway 2 posts by clicking on the links in this post–they should be live at least until the end of the day on Monday, 10/3). The novella itself–as well as the 17 other novellas launching the world–will go live on WEDNESDAY 10/5. And then we’re all joining in to watch the airing of Autumn in the Vineyard, Marina’s book-turned-into-a-movie, on Saturday night. Join us at the What’cha Watching Live party here: https://www.facebook.com/events/878387495627610/).

2) The ALSO HUGE second item of news is that CALLING IT is on sale for 99¢ through Monday 10/10. Isn’t that awesome???? You can go directly to this link to buy it on Amazon, or head on over to the Carina Press website for a full list of retailers offering the deal price.

3) Another big thing going on is that I’m part of a Baseball Romance Giveaway. You can enter to win 30–yes, you read that number right–baseball romances plus a Kindle Fire. Crazy, right? Good luck!

4) I am also happy to be one of the donating authors with the Send A Little Love campaign in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Check it out at: http://www.romancehasaheart.org/

5) And finally (for this week at least), LAST CALL, my free short story, is one of 21 romances that are all being offered for free. Can I say that one more time? Sure — FREE! That’s actually being hosted right here on my website, so all you need to do is pop on over to the Fall In Love page.

Oh, fine, should we have a bonus what’s-going-on post? In two weeks, I’ll be part of the Hearts & Sparks Blogger/Reader Appreciation Brunch at the NJ RWA chapter’s meeting in a couple of weeks. On Sunday, 10/16, in fact. Want to join us? We would love to have you! Head on over to http://www.njromancewriters.org/hearts–sparks.html to sign up.

Phew! Thanks for reading — I hope you’ll be clicking on some of these links, too! And then maybe we can all go find a hammock somewhere to collapse into. Although that’s probably as bad of an idea as the monsoon analogy. But, hey, it’s pouring right now so I can’t think straight. Luckily, I enjoy the rain.

And on to Day Three! Today’s CALLED UP blog tour has eight stops today, including an interview at Becky on Books.

(Stop 1) – Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews

(Stop 2) – Book Lover in Florida

(Stop 3) – Becky on Books

(Stop 4) -Lady Muslin Myst’s Mysterious Hodgepodge

(Stop 5) – Ms C’s Diversions

(Stop 6) – The Jeep Diva

(Stop 7) – A Brit and a Yank

(Stop 8) – Reviews from the Heart

And don’t forget to check out the Tasty Book Tours website for the full blog tour schedule.

Today is Day Two of the CALLED UP blog tour, and we’ve got seven stops today, including a guest post at Fire and Ice Book Reviews where I talk about Who’s Who in the series.

(Stop 1) – I Love Romance (with REVIEW)

(Stop 2) – Lisa’s Home for Books (with REVIEW)

(Stop 3) – The Silver Dagger Scriptorium

(Stop 4) – Fire And Ice Book Reviews (with REVIEW)

(Stop 5) – Plain Talk Book Marketing

(Stop 6) – Melena’s Reviews

(Stop 7) – A Southern Girls Bookshelf

And don’t forget to check out the Tasty Book Tours website for the full blog tour schedule.

I feel so very honored to have received so many awesome reviews for CALLING IT, my debut book with Carina Press. I thought I’d collect some of the best ones here so they’d be in one place. Check them out below. (And if you’re interested in taking a chance on a new author, you can buy CALLING IT at Amazon and other e-retailers.) Thank you!

Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews Purest Delight Award“Calling It grabbed my heart from the start and didn’t let go. I enjoyed every crazy, funny, emotional, heart-warming minute of it and I can’t wait to read the next one in this series!” ~ 4.5 stars ~ Guilty Pleasures ~ Read full review

“Ms. Doyle’s fresh writing just lit a fuse that I didn’t want to end. I’m in awe that CALLING IT is her first novel. She absolutely killed it!” ~ The Romance Reviews ~ Read full review

TRR Top Pick“I am STUNNED that this is a debut book for this author. She honestly couldn’t have written it any better. I cannot wait for the next one. This author just became an auto-buy for me. I can’t wait for more, but in the meantime…YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK!!” ~ A+ ~ Smitten with Reading ~ Read full review

“Sweet, hot and easy reading – I am hoping that Ms. Doyle will be revisiting their friends and giving us their happily ever afters too.” ~ 4.5 “awesome” stars ~ Wicked Reads ~ Read full review

“Author Jen Doyle definitely hits a home run in her first at-bat with her debut, Calling It. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun 😉) Jen’s a fresh and welcome new voice in the romance genre and I look forward to reading more from her soon!” ~ Polished Bookworm ~ Read full review

“This must be one of the sweetest romances I’ve read lately. And it’s got everything. Small town, tight knit families, sports–even the mention of hockey which is my favorite–flings and secret glances that’ll probably be revealed in their own books, a charming hero and a librarian heroine. I mean, c’mon, if this is not the recipe for a damn good book, then I don’t know what is. I’m adding five big spoonfuls of this sexy, sweet romance into my hodgepodge and contemplate on who might do the naughty with whom in the future books that I wish were already here.” ~ Lady Muslin Myst’s Mysterious Hodgepodge ~ Read full review

“”Calling It’ by Jen Doyle is a fun, light romance that has a sexy Hero and a sweet heroine. It is sure to make any reader feel good and happy. … I would certainly recommend this if you are looking for a story that has a great sense of family, love and growth.  Oh, and a bit of baseball heroes too!” ~ Cat’s Reviews ~ Read full review

 

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TBT of another kind…

As I gear up for the release date of CALLED UP (25 days away, but who’s counting?), I thought I’d share this post that I wrote back in April for the Carina Press blog. Here goes:

There’s something about baseball that has always appealed to me. The crisp green grass, the crack of the bat, the way those baseball pants fit so well…

Buster-PoseyBaseball pants aside, some of my most vivid memories revolve around baseball, starting when the Red Sox and Yankees played the AL East tie-breaker in 1978, my parents and their friends cheering as they crowded around our tiny little TV.

Baseball was always a part of our life growing up. My mom came from a Brooklyn Dodgers family—the family legend is that her uncle moved to L.A. specifically to express his displeasure from the stands of Dodger Stadium. My dad, on the other hand, was a Yankees fan through and through, raising his three daughters to be the same.

Ron Guidry and Bucky Dent were my first celebrity crushes (just barely inching out Mark Harmon in his 240-Robert days), but it was Thurman Munson who I truly fell in love with. Despite the awards he racked up—Rookie of the Year, three-time Gold Glove Award, and seven-time All-Star, just to name a few—his being the first Team Captain since Lou Gehrig was what truly hooked me. The respect of teammates and management alike spoke to me not just of his talent, but of his humility and love for the game and for his team.

Despite this history, in real life, I managed to fall in love with a Red Sox fan. Although his allegiances weren’t unexpected—my husband grew up in Boston, after all—it came as a blow to my family. And I had no intention of converting.

Sure, we moved to Boston. Sure, we went to Fenway Park regularly. But me, a Sox fan? No way.

Flash forward to 2003. On that fateful October night, as I watched Aaron Boone hit his walk-off home-run and felt that bone-crushing disappointment, I realized I’d succumbed. Because I, like the rest of Red Sox Nation, had believed that maybe this time they would win.

IMG_5936They didn’t; not that night. But the Red Sox of 2004 were an entirely different ballgame. (Yes, I went there.) Damon, Lowe, Ortiz… Although the list goes on, it wasn’t any one individual—it was the team. It was everything baseball should be.

And on that October night when the Red Sox beat the Yankees in their historic win—when my dad called my husband and their conversation was the very definition of sportsmanship—I realized I’ve been blessed to have these men I love up close and the men I love from afar. And that writing CALLING IT gave me the chance to put my love affair into words.

How about you? Is it the crack of the bat that gets your heart racing? The pants? Do tell…

(See the original post at: http://carinapress.com/blog/2016/04/my-love-affair-with-baseball/)

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