Welcome! Come in and get comfy!

New Orleans can be warm – can I get you something to drink? Coffee? Unsweet iced tea? Or maybe you’d like to try my favorite cocktail, a French 75 (recipe below).

Come on through the house & we’ll sit on the back porch under the ceiling fan. We could pick some veggies and herbs for dinner in the yard. Are you allergic to cats? My porch-cat Monica is friendly, but she’ll respect your space if you prefer.

I love New Orleans, but I grew up in Montréal and my heart will be forever Canadian. My Mum’s people are from Gaspé, Quebec—if you leave Montréal and head east, along the Saint Lawrence River, as it gradually widens into the Atlantic. As a kid, as soon as school ended in June, I used to take the train to Gaspé with my grandmother. I love going back whenever I can, to hike along the coast and catch up on family, local news, and gossip (which are, okay, almost the same… where news leaves off & gossip begins is so often where my story ideas start!) I also kayak a lot, watching seals and migrating birds, around the terribly-named Baie des Chaleurs, aka the Bay of Warmth. If you’ve ever tried swimming in the Canadian part of the Atlantic coast, you know “warmth” is a lie. Maybe that’s why I love the heat of New Orleans so much!

Writing has been my main gig for years. I’ve written non-fiction stories for news outlets, I’ve written literary fiction and poetry (under a different name). I’ve also done a lot of editing & behind-the-scenes writing for non-profit groups and NGOs. But my real passion is writing stories about love and found family. I’m proud to be writing empowering, celebratory Romance novels, because Love is for everyone.

I arrived in New Orleans in 2010, but before living here, I worked in Paris, Toronto, and Vancouver—where I married my amazing American husband on a beach in Stanley Park. In Paris, I got to work as a restaurant reviewer (sooooo delicious), and then as a music journalist, and finally as a history writer & tour guide, which I loved.

My debut Contemporary Romance, book 1 in the Frenchmen Street Series, begins with Praline Martini and follows a group of friends who are all connected to a bar on Frenchmen Street, in New Orleans. Frenchmen Street is an iconic few blocks of restaurants and bars where local musicians play the old jazz styles of Louisiana. Full disclosure: I literally live around the corner from Frenchmen Street, so I have a vested interest in getting this particular community just right on the page!

For now, let me make you a version of my favorite drink: The French 75 is named for a cannon used in World War I. NOLA bartender extraordinaire, Chris Hannah, says: “The Lafayette Escadrille were an allied fighter pilot outfit made up of American and French military who would drink cognac and Champagne after successful air raids and toast to the French 75 cannon for their safety.” The drink might have gotten popular in Harry’s New York Bar in Paris, though no one is quite sure. In New Orleans, some of the very best French 75s are at Hannah’s place, Jewel of the South. Around the city, you’ll find the drink made sometimes with gin and sometimes with cognac, served in a champagne glass. When the weather’s hot, I make French 75s with gin, but in winter, I like a cognac French 75 to sip beside the fireplace. Try ‘em both, see which you prefer!

French 75 Cocktail Recipe

Ingredients for 1 glass:
Combine 1½ ounces of quality gin
With ¾ ounce fresh lemon juice and ¾ ounce simple syrup
Fill the rest of the glass with Champagne
(Cava works just fine!)
Lemon twist for garnish.

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