Give It Up For the Weekend with Gayle Irwin ~ Snowbirding

I’m very happy to welcome back Gayle, and hear her talking about… snowbirds!

Gayle M. Irwin is an award-winning author and freelance writer, being recognized by Wyoming Writers, Inc., and the Wyoming Press Association for several of her works. She is a contributor to seven Chicken Soup for the Soul books and the author of many inspirational pet books and stories for both children and adults. Her clean, contemporary romance series, Pet Rescue Romance, consists of Rescue Road, Finding Love at Compassion Ranch, and the recently released holiday novella, Rhiann’s Rescue, the series’ prequel. She subtly weaves important life lessons within the lines and pages of her stories, including the importance of pet rescue and adoption. An animal advocate, Gayle volunteers for various dog rescue and humane society organizations and donates a percentage of all book sales to such groups. Gayle resides in Wyoming with her husband and their adopted animals. Learn more about the author, her writing endeavors, and her pets, and receive free stories and resources by visiting her website:

Celebrating the Holidays Snowbird-Style

         The long-tailed, fast-moving bird zipped across the lawn, weaving around the junipers and through the yucca like a dog meanders an agility course. Roadrunners are agile creatures, and just as many of us witnessed in the famous cartoon, these birds often out-maneuver the wily coyotes that pursue them.

Various species of cacti bloom from January to March, including prickly pear and cholla. Saguaro cacti with their thorny, ancient arms stand tall in the Sonoran Desert of the American southwest.

The cactus wren, largest of the wren species live in  old woodpecker holes within these stately plants as well as among the cholla cactus fields in the desert. Their ability to reside and sit upon thorny plants helps keep these birds safe from predators.

Every winter millions of ducks, geese, and sandhill cranes flock to Bos del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in central New Mexico. Their calls and the sound of wings flapping echo across the Rio Grande River Valley as they feed and fly in this region.

Snowbirding – a term for people who, millions of fowl do, travel south for winter every fall. Wintering in warmer climates has become an annual trek for thousands of people during the past 50+ years. We’ve learned from birds – enjoy 60 to 80-degree weather in the south during the winter months and return north for the 50 to 90-degree temperatures in spring, summer, and early fall.

During winter vacations to the southwest, I’ve experienced floral blooms and saguaros decorated with lights. I’ve observed the many species of birds, as well as the human snowbirds, relishing warm temperatures. I hope to become a snowbird in the near future, staying longer than a week during the winter season – more like three months!

My latest romance novella incorporates the idea of such an adventure. Rhiann’s Rescue, a holiday prequel for my Pet Rescue Romance series, takes readers from the cold and snow of eastern Washington/northern Idaho to the city and outskirts of Phoenix, Arizona and to central and southern New Mexico. They will experience the Christmas lights of a resort, including decorated saguaro cactus and glorious sunsets and night skies. They will learn about sandhill cranes and pet rescue endeavors. And they will meet delightful characters like Rhiann Kelly and her beloved grandmother … as well as art gallery owner Elias Griffin, who attempts to steal Rhiann’s heart.

Through my series, I seek not only to entertain but also to educate readers about pet rescue and adoption, an endeavor about which I’m passionate. The original novel, Rescue Road, released last year, takes Rhiann to Montana to start an animal rescue sanctuary, something readers of this new holiday novella, Rhiann’s Rescue, learn about … and the obstacles, as well as the passages, to that dream.

Rhiann’s Rescue is available via e-book for only .99 cents through Kindle, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo. The book is also available as a print book via Amazon. If you love clean, contemporary romance stories and pet rescue endeavors, I believe you’ll enjoy my new novella!

Fly away with us for the holidays!

P.S. An added benefit to releasing Rhiann’s Rescue this month: November is Adopt-a-Senior-Pet Month, and I weave an elderly rescue cat named Poppy into the novella. Two senior cats, sisters about 15 years of age, live in my home, therefore, I incorporated an older cat into the story and released the book during this special month that honors and celebrates senior pets!

P.P.S. FREE SHORT STORY! A short story that is also a series prequel is available for FREE as an e-book on Amazon and other platforms. Titled Grams’ Legacy, the 6,500-word story introduces Rhiann’s older sister, Erin, who also shows up in Rescue Road and is the main character in another book in the Pet Rescue Romance series titled Finding Love at Compassion Ranch. Find the free short story Gram’s Legacy as a Kindle book on Amazon here: or on other digital platforms here: You may want to pick up the entire series for your winter reading pleasure … or gift the collection to a friend or family member this holiday season!


And here it is, Gayle’s latest!

Rhiann’s Rescue: A Pet Rescue Romance Prequel by Gayle Irwin released in October in the Clean, contemporary genre.

Rhiann Kelly dreams of starting an animal rescue sanctuary, and her beloved grandmother desires to see her achieve that dream. However, they don’t agree on when or where. Because of her Grams’ health, Rhiann thinks they should stay near large cities; Grams wants to return to Montana, where she was born and raised. The two also clash over Rhiann’s reluctance to date; her writing career and caregiving duties take priority in her life. Can the two resolve these conflicts during their annual winter holiday trip to Arizona? Will the spirit of the holiday season play a major role in a change of heart for Rhiann, especially after she signs a book deal, meets nature photographer and art gallery owner Elias Griffin, and helps his mother adopt a dog … or will she be unwilling to once again risk heartbreak?

Rhiann’s Rescue is currently available in e-book and print format from Amazon:

The novella is also available as an e-book on other platforms; found out more here:

Rhiann lounged near the pool at The Magnifico Resort near Phoenix, balancing a small laptop on her knees. Adobe villas surrounded the manicured lawns brimming with blooming roses and tall palm trees. Braided lights roped around fences, including the three-foot-tall black iron fencing that enclosed the oval pool and large lounging area.

Within several yards of the resort loomed rolling hills of desert landscape, including saguaro, barrel, prickly pear, and other cacti, many about to bloom. The 75-degree temperature and sunny sky warmed her skin as Rhiann read the email she had received.

     “Hi, Rhiann – I’m delighted to tell you that your story, ‘Moose Prance While Sandhills Dance: My Yellowstone Experience,’ has been accepted for the summer issue of Big Sky Magazine. Congratulations! I’ll be working with you during the next two months to edit the article for publication. You will receive $500 compensation, more with photos (which I believe you told me you have). I’ll send a contract with greater details in the next day or two and ask you to return a signed copy to me within one week. Thanks for your submission, and I look forward to working with you. If you have ideas for upcoming issues, please let me know. We are excited to work with you on your submitted story and other possible future articles. Sincerely, Etta Grace Johannsen – Managing Editor, Big Sky Magazine.

     A grin spread across Rhiann’s face.

     “Dang, I love what I do!”

     “That’s always a good thing, I believe.”

     The deep masculine voice caused Rhiann to jerk her head. Her green eyes locked on the suntanned face of a man in his mid-40s, onyx eyes shining and full lips smiling. Rhiann startled.

     “Oh! I didn’t hear anyone walk up.”

     “Attributes of great walking shoes.”

     He extended a leg to show off blue canvas boat loafers. Smile still on his face, the man asked, “So what do you do that makes you love your work?”

     Rhiann closed the laptop. “I’m a writer.”

     “Awesome! I’m a nature photographer and art gallery owner.” He extended his hand. “Elias Griffin.”

     She shook his hand. “Rhiann Kelly.”

     “Rhiann? A unique, beautiful name.”

     “Elias – that’s a name a person doesn’t often hear.”

     He nodded. “Technically, I’m Elias Griffin the third. However, since my father and grandfather have already passed on, I dropped the more formal version.”

     “I’m sorry they’ve passed. So have mine.”

“And I’m sorry for your loss, Miss Kelly – or is it Mrs.?”

“You were right the first time,” Rhiann responded, maintaining her smile.

He bowed slightly. “Miss Kelly.” He nodded toward a chair nearby. “Would you mind if I sit for a few moments?”

Rhiann shook her head and responded, “No, please. Have a seat.”

Follow Gayle on Social:

Facebook Author Page:

Pinterest (under Waggin’ Tales):

Twitter: wyoauthor1

Author Website:

Amazon Author Page:

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