Monday, April 15, 2019

Wind Surfing on Lake Garda + A Giveaway

Hello, all!

Today on My Pet Blog, we're turning things over to Chelsea Ballard, one of the amazing authors contributing to the upcoming Masquerade: Oddly Suited anthology.

Take it away, Chelsea!


Hiya! I’m Chelsea Marie Ballard, the author of the short story ‘Remedy’ from the young adult, romance anthology Masquerade: Oddly Suited.

This is my first time writing a guest post, so go easy on me. This is my first time experiencing all the author things. The first contest I ever entered. The first short story I ever wrote.

See, I’m a pantster. I don’t plot my stories out. No outlines (except a rough one in my head) and the characters make the rules. And then when I get the chance, usually when my kiddos are sleeping, I write it down. 

So, I don’t have much advice, besides the old ‘butt in chair’ schtick. Which leaves the classic ‘what inspired you to write the story’ post. 

Sorry not sorry.

And boy, oh boy, do I have a cool story for you. Or least I think it’s cool, you probably think it is time consuming and possibly boring. But you should stick with it, if not for my insecurity’s sake, for the poor blogger who agreed to host my ramblings. 

You know when you open your windows computer (sorry mac people!) and you have the sign in screen with some dope picture from around the world? One day I saw this sweet picture of someone wind surfing on Lake Garda in Italy.

Wait! Wind surfing! On a lake?! 


Of course, I clicked on the tell me more or whatever button and got put right into Bing. But I didn’t even care because guys, this lake is so cool! It’s the largest lake in Italy and because of the difference in altitude temperatures, it can carry its own wind currents.

Also, the climate is weirdly mild, resulting in citrus trees, which are extremely rare at that latitude. There is even a type of salmon only found in Lake Garda. The population of the fish was declining so some scientists tried to take the salmon to other lakes. But the fish wouldn’t flourish in other lakes! Lake Garda or bust, I guess. 

I didn’t even get to the islands yet. One of them has an old monastery on it from 1220!

At this point, if you’re not a science geek like me, you’re probably snoozing. Wipe that drool from your face and keep reading! This lake boggled my mind. So much so that I envisioned two lovers escaping a mansion, tumbling down the hill and crossing the lake to freedom. Because Lake Garda had everything it needed to survive (fruit, fish, and wind power) it fit perfectly into this idea of a dystopia where there were protected areas where rich people lived and the dangerous, wild, unprotected lands.

I already had Remy and Rudy simmering in my imagination so plopping them into this world was easy. I just added in a pinch of forbidden love and a smidge of on the nose bird puns and boom! ‘Remedy’.

Well, there’s more to it than that, but you’ll have to read it to find out. Thanks for sticking with me for this long and I hope you enjoy my story about young love against all odds. 

And Lake Garda. Always, Lake Garda.


About Remedy

Born with privilege in the Protected Lands means money, power, and ease. For Remy, it means
forever being apart from Rudy. On the night of the Masquerade Ball, Remy must choose
between duty and heart. Which will prove stronger?

About The Author
A student of all things, Chelsea has turned her passion for flowery prose, angsty television, and biology toward her writing. She enjoys rare vines, quirky people, and a good love/hate story. This gold-ranking gamer lives in Bucks County, PA with her family, anxious dog, and fat cat.

About the Anthology

Title: Masquerade: Oddly Suited
Release date: April 30th, 2019
Publisher: Dancing Lemur Press
Genres: Young Adult Fiction: Romance – General / Paranormal / Contemporary
Print ISBN: 9781939844644
EBook ISBN: 9781939844651

Find love at the ball…

Can a fake dating game show lead to love? Will a missing key free a clock-bound prince? Can a softball pitcher and a baseball catcher work together? Is there a vampire living in Paradise, Newfoundland? What’s more important—a virtual Traveler or a virtual date to the ball?

Ten authors explore young love in all its facets, from heartbreak to budding passion. Featuring the talents of L.G. Keltner, Jennifer Lane, C.D. Gallant-King, Elizabeth Mueller, Angela Brown, Myles Christensen, Deborah Solice, Carrie-Anne Brownian, Anstice Brown, and Chelsea Marie Ballard.

Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these ten tales will mystify and surprise even as they touch your heart. Don your mask and join the party…


The authors of Masquerade: Oddly Suited are giving away a $50 Amazon gift card to one winner. To enter, please complete the Rafflecopter below. The giveaway is open internationally from 12:00 am GMT 17th March to 12:00am GMT 6th May.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I think I know what picture you are talking about. How fascinating.

    Thank you for hosting Chelsea today.

    1. I'm glad someone else saw it too!! Inspiration can come from the craziest places.

  2. Thanks for hosting my awkward rant about bing images. šŸ˜†

    1. It's a great post. Come back anytime. :)

      (And congrats on making it into the anthology!)

  3. This is just like when people post pictures as story prompts. But this time it was a Microsoft prompt. Fun.

  4. Ideas can come from unexpected sources! I like finding out new things from those Microsoft images. Lake Garda sounds like an interesting and beautiful place and the perfect setting for a story.

    Thanks for hosting us today, M.J!

  5. I love how that image inspired your story! I'm a science geek too, so I always love anomalies like this. Lake Garda sounds like a wonderful place!

  6. A picture is worth a thousand words, right? Thanks for sharing your inspiration story. I'm fairly certain that J.K. Rowling is a pantser so I think you are in good company.

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