Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Welcome, Marie Rochelle

Coming Soon from Phaze Books:
Lucky Desire
Print Book
Features the following stories;

Lucky Charms Except:

“Do you think women like to be kissed fast and hard? Or slow and tenderly then let the build up happen?” Patrick asked moving him thumb so it stroked the side of her face. “I need to make sure I have this down perfectly.”
Jada didn’t understand what was going on with her. For some reason, Patrick’s nearness was making her head spin. She was feeling a wave of excitement coursing through her at the thought of his mouth of hers.
“I think most women like a mixture of both. We don’t want a guy who is going to shove his tongue instantly into our mouths. We like a little build up.”
“I believe I understand what you’re saying,” Patrick exclaimed as he leaned closer and gently nibbled at her bottom lip.
Jada felt a moan coming and tried to swallow it back down, but failed miserably. She couldn’t believe how good and right Patrick’s mouth felt teasing her. Great, how was she going to be able to only see him as a friend now?
Raising his mouth from her, he gazed into her eyes. “Was that good?”
“Yes, I think we can stop now.” She tried to move back, but Patrick wouldn’t loosen his grip.
“I’m not done yet. I think I need more practice.” Patrick slowly moved his mouth to her earlobe and gently pulled it into his moist mouth.
The flicker of his tongue sent a burst of longing straight to her kitty kat. Closing her eyes, Jada leaned closer to Patrick and allowed herself to get lost in the feeling. God, she didn’t know the last time a guy found her spot. It was unbelievable that she was feeling like this with Patrick out of all people.
“How are you feeling?” he breathed against her neck the second he let go of her ear.
“Good,” she whimpered, turning, allowing him better access.
“That’s what I wanted to hear,” Patrick growled then recaptured her mouth. The touch of his lips was a delicious sensation that she loved every second of.
Jada lost all thought as Patrick pulled her between his thighs and traced her back with the tips of his fingers. She was so into the kiss that she didn’t realize his tongue was in her mouth until it licked at hers.

                                                            Desire Excerpt:

“Love is for fools. I don’t know why you even bother dealing with the way she treats you,” Nick Lavery complained, glaring at his best friend across the room. “Just dump her bossy ass and move on with your life.”
“Man, you shouldn’t let what Carrie did to you make you hate being in love,” Richie, his best friend of twelve years, told him. “Carrie was a gold-digger. You deserve better than that. Maybe if you leave this damn apartment more. You might find someone new. Anyways, Kristy doesn’t treat me badly. We are in a relationship and people in love fight, but it passes it always does.”
“You keep that notion and you will come home to find a note taped to your fridge saying ‘I don’t mean for this to happen, but I’ve fallen in love with someone else,’ ” Nick bit out.
“Carrie left you for a personal trainer who owns a chain of workout gyms. How long do you think their relationship will last?”
“It will last as long as Kurt has the money to support Carrie. She loves to be pampered and taken care of. She’ll stay with him providing he has dollar signs around him,” Nick exclaimed then tossed back his shot of whiskery.
“Nick, you need to get over this. It happened eight months ago. Don’t waste anymore of your life on her. Move on and find someone else.”
Nick knew that Richie was giving him good advice, but he wasn’t ready to listen. He had given Carrie his heart and she stomped on it. No, he wasn’t about to fall for another lying, cheating worthless woman. One was enough in his life time.
“Are you listening to me? Every time I talk to you about this you blow me off. I miss us going out together on double dates,” Richie told him.
Nick placed his glass down on the table. He hated how Carrie had tuned him into such a bitter person, but he couldn’t help it. It was hard when he found out the person he had been in love with hadn’t returned his feelings. It was a bitter pill to swallow.
“I understand what you’re telling me. I’m working on getting Carrie out of my mind and heart, but I can’t do it. Damn it, I was going to propose to her. I was such a fool,” Nick growled. “I swear I’m not going to allow myself to be made a fool of again.”
“Don’t let your anger keep you from missing out on finding love again. It’s out there for you. All you have to do is open up your heart again.”
“Okay, Dr. Drew. I’ll open up my heart again when the right woman comes along until then I’m just going to have fun with women. No more trying to find ‘the one’. I’m too old for that shit now.”
“Are you sure about this? Do you really want to break some woman’s heart the way Carrie did yours?’ Richie asked, trying to reason with him. “It wouldn’t be fair to them. You don’t want them to feel the same pain as you are experiencing at the moment.”
“Well, I guess it would be best for them if they didn’t fall in love with me because I’m not going to fall in love with them. I’m done with all of that love crap. It’s a waste of time and energy.”
“Don’t you date just date an oblivious woman so you can only break her heart. That would be so wrong and you know it.”
“Calm down,” Nick grumbled. “I’m not planning to do that. God, you really get on my nerves sometimes. I’m only saying I won’t fall in love with another woman as deeply as I did in my past relationship.”
“Are you sure? You never know how you will react when real love hits you right between the eyes.”
“I’m positive. I’m not looking for love so it won’t find me and that suits me just fine,” Nick tossed back, hoping Richie would just drop it.”
“What ever you say,” Richie told him.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Welcome, Peg Herring


Thanks to Roseanne for the invitation to guest on her blog. I offered to write about e-publishing, a bold step for one who knows so little about it. My first e-book, a “vintage” mystery called GO HOME AND DIE, comes out April 1, 2010, from Red Rose Publishing if all goes well.(,

It's a mystery that takes place in the late 1960s with a prim young woman, Carrie Walsh, and a hunky Vietnam vet, Jack Porter, teaming up to solve a murder. Carrie is attracted to Jack, but he's got secrets that threaten their relationship and their lives.

It's exciting to see a book come to the "publishing point". I’ve done my part, and two editors and a cover artist have done theirs, so stayed tuned!

I recently learned some things at EPICon, the meeting place of e-publishers, authors, and others interested in this fast-growing business. Let’s start with the bad news. E-publishing as a whole struggles to get respect in the world of publishing. Why? E-publishers are often very small (sometimes one-person) entities, which generates the image of a guy in the corner of his dining room, publishing obscure bits simply because he likes them. Other e-publishers blast the market, pushing out so many books that it is difficult to see how they are the least bit choosey. Many e-pubbed books are self-published, which makes many readers cringe. And e-books are associated with erotica and steamy romances, which, whether it’s fair or unfair, is not seen as the height of literary fiction.

There’s a lot of “the way it’s supposed to be done” bias as well. If a book is not traditionally published, it will not be eligible for reviews, awards, or even recognition from the usual sources that help authors succeed. Some rail against this fact, but realistically, how does an organization keep standards any other way? Who has the time and the energy to search through the thousands of e-books out there and separate the good from the bad from the ugly? Being “a published author” has made that differentiation, at least to some extent, for a long time, but control has been wrested from the editors and agents by technology. Nobody knows quite how to handle this step-child, e-publishing, so they tend to ignore it.

So what’s the good news?

E-publishing is gaining. Numbers, technology, authors, you name it. Even the big publishers are beginning to take note of the e-phenomenon, trying to figure out how to make it work for them.

It can be lucrative. Many e-pubbed authors are laughing all the way to the bank as traditionally published authors wait years for royalties. E-publishers (reputable ones, anyway) often pay quarterly, so returns come in much sooner (if you’ve done your marketing well ).

E-publishers claim (and authors I spoke with agreed) that they give an author greater freedom in writing what he/she wants to write. My agent originally suggested e-publishing because I have branded myself as a writer of historical in traditional publishing, but I also have several contemporary stand-alones. Good books, but not fodder for the big mills, and not in line with “Peg Herring, Tudor era writer”. My agent suggested I submit one of them to Red Rose, and that’s how GO HOME AND DIE came to be “Coming Soon”.

E-publishing houses tend to be small, so you get to know people. You’ll know after the first book if they are people you want to continue to work with. Best case scenario: each author becomes part of a supportive little group, sort of an “us against the world” mentality. Trying to get recognition for an e-book is daunting, but it can be fun, too.

If you aren’t familiar with EPIC, you might want to take a look. They work to help e-pubbed authors succeed, and the dues are very reasonable. The next con is a year away, but it couldn’t hurt to find out what they have going.

E-publishing: Less pressure to sell, sell, sell. More discretion in what you’d like to write next. And a check several times a year. Despite the fact that I will continue to work at traditional publishing, e-pubbing is a worthwhile venture for me. What can it hurt to have my name known in a few more places?

Bio: Peg Herring writes historical and “vintage” mysteries. Her latest hardcover, HER HIGHNESS’ FIRST MURDER (2010, Five Star), is the first of a series with Elizabeth Tudor as a protagonist. Her first e-book, GO HOME AND DIE, releases from Red Rose Publishing on April 1, 2010. When not writing, Peg loves reading, travel, gardening, and directing musical groups.

Go Home and Die

Carrie stood at the third-floor window, squinting as she watched Peter Callender in the parking lot below. The day was cool but bright, and the dumpy little man whose motives she knew so well moved busily in and out of her range of vision, disappearing several times down the alley and returning with a can of garbage each time. The overfilled receptacles were a lot for a man with spaghetti arms to carry, and the occasional scrape of metal brushing concrete sounded, but determination provided strength for the task. With great care, Peter dumped the contents of each can beside the last, forming a disgusting, noxious wall of garbage around the sides and rear of a cream-colored Cadillac sitting in his parking space.

The Caddy belonged to Peter’s brother and business partner, Jim Callender, who had usurped Peter’s space in order to allow an attractive female client to leave her brand new l968 Mustang convertible in Jim’s space. The sleek red car sat two spaces down, and Carrie noted the sparkle of its chrome wheels in the October sunlight without losing track of Peter’s progress.

Jim and the lady in question had gone off together for a “consultation,” a term that caused Peter and the third partner, their cousin Brad Callender, to roll their eyes each time Jim used it. Bluntly speaking, they had gone to a nearby hotel for a quickie, leaving their cars at the office for the sake of appearance. That meant no parking space was available for Peter when he returned from lunch. Now Peter’s Thunderbird sat in a “One Hour Parking Only” space on the street as he grimly took his revenge, one gooey pile of trash at a time.

As she turned away from the window, Carrie gave a little sigh. Her work was almost finished for the day, but she would not be leaving soon. When Peter had finished his juvenile prank and gone home, she would trek down to the Caddy and un-barricade it before Jim returned. She would do it in the name of peace and harmony in the office. Not that there was much of that.

Carrie had worked for the firm of Callender, Callender, and Callender for almost two years now,— longer than any other secretary had tolerated the antics of the three adult delinquents. Decent lawyers, successful men, and responsible citizens in many ways, they hated each other passionately and aired their feelings at peak volume when the mood struck one, two, or even all three of them.

Past secretaries had quit in tears, in anger, and in disgust, but Carrie stayed on, braving the shouting and the lunacy. Maybe she had become used to their ways, or, as her mother said over and over, maybe she had no sense. Mostly she could not face the prospect of looking for another job.

The coping mechanism developed over time was to foresee and forestall trouble whenever possible. When Brad, the cheap one, had billed his own uncle, Clayton Callender, at their highest rate for preparing his will, using the justification that “The old geezer is rolling in money,” Carrie had treated it as if it were her own clerical error and got Peter to fix it. Seeing Peter dithered with useless detail until papers were often filed late, she’d suggested a revolving system for proofing and left Peter out of the rotation when a deadline was close. She sometimes managed to keep Jim’s escapades with female clients a secret from the other two, although what they did know was scandalous enough.

Difficult as it was, Carrie made the office work, and the Callenders were grateful in their way. Still, it was awful when they went at each other, screaming, swearing, and shouting for hours, followed by a day, sometimes two or three, when Carrie was the only one any of the three would speak to. Peter and Jim were bad, but Brad egged them on, siding with Jim sometimes and Peter others. Occasionally, the brothers united against him, too. Carrie never knew how it would play out.

Today, she would remove the trash from around Jim’s car and hope that neither man mentioned it in the morning. Peter would think Jim too proud to say anything, and Jim would never know he had been the target of Peter’s vendetta, if she acted quickly.

As she started down the hallway to the stairs, she heard feet shuffling on the landing above and a voice called, “Where you goin’, Miss Walsh?” She turned to see Bea, the building’s janitor, coming down the stairs, mop in hand. Bea, twice Carrie’s size and age and suffering from bad feet, still did the work of three men. A static-y transistor radio broadcast Motown music from her belt. Bea claimed she cleaned better with accompaniment, and was especially fond of the Temptations.

She answered her own question. “You’re gonna clean up that mess, ain’t you? Everybody in the building’s snickerin’ about their latest stunt already.”

“It’ll only take a few minutes,” Carrie said defensively, “and tomorrow will be a lot easier.”

“It ain’t your job.” Bea set the mop down with a thump, and folds of skin under her chin wobbled as she shook her head. “All that hair you got still don’t give them men the right to treat you like a red-headed step-child.”

“They don’t do it to me. They do it to each other,” Carrie reasoned. “I hate it when they fight, so I fix what’s fixable.”

“Like when you cleaned the spaghetti off the wall after Peter missed Jim with it, or when you bought a new lamp with your own money so Brad wouldn’t know Jim busted his?” Bea shook her mop and the smell of pine wafted toward Carrie. “It ain’t right, you babying them. Lotsa better lawyers would hire a secretary good as you.”

Carrie laughed mirthlessly. “I don’t know any. They all want girls who have an associate’s.” She added somewhat wistfully, “And with class.”

Bea started to say, “You’re not so—” but Carrie interrupted, pointing to herself.

“I know what kind of impression I make. Frizzy hair. Twiggy body. A half-blind secretary with Coke-bottle glasses who has to squint to recognize faces.”

Bea put up an admonitory finger as if to argue, but Carrie went on in a burst of self-deprecation. “I’m lucky the Callenders are so hard to work for that they had to give me a chance.” She shoved her glasses back into place with a quick jab, a habit of necessity since the weighty lenses made the sturdy frames to slide down her nose constantly. “I’m grateful for this job. I’ll clean up Jim’s prank and go on.”

Bea appeared tempted to say more but closed her mouth firmly. Everything about Carrie screamed “plain”, —no attempt at a hairstyle, clothes that hid her figure, and a demeanor that invited others to ignore any feelings she might have. “Men don’t make passes at girls who wear glasses.” “Nice girls don’t talk back.” “Ladies don’t raise their voices.” Societal mantras formed Carrie’s operating principles. Although some women of the ‘60s were learning to ignore them, Carrie believed.

Bea sighed to indicate that a cleaning woman could supply only so much encouragement and pulled yellow cotton gloves from her back pocket. “All right, but I’ll help. It ain’t my mess, neither, but together we’ll get done twice as fast.”

The two women worked quickly, Bea shoveling the trash back into the metal cans with a large dustpan and Carrie dragging them into the alley from whence they came. Bea insisted on taking the dirtier job, since she was dressed for it, although Carrie’s earth-toned skirt and sweater would hardly have shown traces of more earth.

It was five-twenty when Carrie, hauling the last empty can to within Bea’s reach, looked at her watch. “Oops! It’s getting late. I’ve got to call the courthouse before five-thirty.” She surveyed the scene to judge their progress. Feeling dirty despite Bea’s efforts to keep her from the worst of the mess, she longed to finish, but there was no delaying this call. “You’d better get back to your own work. I’ll take the last can back after I make my call and close the office.”

Bea checked her watch, as well. “I am getting behind in my work. Tell you what. I’ll fill this last one and leave it here. You can drop it off in the alley on your way to the bus stop.” She grinned, displaying tiny, even teeth. “It’s Tuesday, so the manager will be checking up on me any time now. He always stops by when it’s two-for-one night at the TNT Bar down the block.”

“Thanks for the help. You’re an angel.” Carrie gave the older woman a hug and headed upstairs while Bea scooped up the last of the trash with practiced movements.

Carrie returned fifteen minutes later, having finished the office chores. Autumn’s early darkness had descended quickly. The other tenants had gone home, a few making smart-aleck remarks about the cause of the mess as they passed. No one else had offered to help.

Hitching her purse strap higher on her shoulder, Carrie picked up the last trashcan by its handles, feeling the cold metal through the gloves she had pulled on. This one smelled of mimeograph ink and something fruity, maybe peaches. It was overly full, and she concentrated on keeping it upright so as not to spill the contents as she entered the alley. Along the wall stood the six cans she’d lugged back earlier, and she set the last one down at the end of the line.

Movement caught her eye, and she peered at where the alley opened at the opposite end. Three human forms huddled there. Two men stood over the third, all of them silhouetted against a lighter building across the street. Carrie saw only shapes, but one man searched the fallen one’s clothing while the other stood back, separating himself from the action. In her surprise, she tipped the trash can, and its lid dropped to the pavement with a clatter. The two standing men looked up, startled, and hurried away, disappearing from sight almost immediately.

Carrie stood for a moment in shock, unable to take in what she had seen. When she recovered enough to consider the man on the ground, she moved cautiously down the alley. He lay flat on his back, very still, hands clutched to his body. When she called out to him, he moaned but did not move. After checking the street to be sure the other two were gone, she knelt beside him, unsure what to do.

Only slightly older than she, the man’s even features were pinched with pain. Blood stained his corduroy jacket and tight-ribbed sweater. He had been stabbed in the chest, and she sensed immediately that the wound was deadly.

Moaning again, the man seemed to become aware of her presence. His mouth moved as he tried to form words, and she leaned close, touching his hand to reassure him.

“I’m going for help. Don’t move. Lie still and rest. I’ll get you to a doctor.”

Surprisingly strong fingers gripped hers, and the man tried again to speak. A whisper came with each ragged breath. She listened intently. Whatever he had to say was important to him.

“Tell Jack. Namwise. Kali—Shurenz. Please. Jack.”

Feeling the fingers begin to lose their grip, Carrie held the hand tightly, looked into the dying man’s eyes, and said the only thing she could say. “I’ll tell Jack exactly what you said. Now rest.” A strangled sigh told her it was no use to go for a doctor, but she held onto the hand until the grip relaxed. With a sad sense of finality, she closed the sightless eyes and went to find a different kind of help.

Welcome, Mary Kennedy Eastham

Where is the Want? - Digging Deep to Understand Your Character's Core

by Mary Kennedy Eastham

What does your character wish for? We all have something that we think will make us whole. The fun we can have as writers, is to go inside our character's heads on the page and either not give this want to our characters OR to give it to them and to make sure that once gotten, it's somehow lacking, not at all what they expected.
Back story to me is the storyteller's gold. It is that silk lining woven into a favorite skirt, not seen but so soft and lush against the skin. Sitting at cafes, coffee shops, in a comfy chair at Borders, I eavesdrop on people and get fabulous back story ideas to use in my stories. People don't edit themselves when they think their conversation is private. It's kind of like that saying - character is who you are when no one is looking. I saw one woman slip a note inside a book cover, then walk away, nearly sobbing. The note said simply: 'You must do the right thing. You must marry her. I will always love you.' I heard another woman, who looked to be in her mid 70's, say to a friend: 'He said I'd never amount to much. Can you imagine a father saying that to his daughter?' I overheard a woman in a London pub say this to another woman: 'I've known your husband for years, but you wouldn't know that. My cat used to shit in your planter. But you wouldn't know that either.'
When I was getting my first Master's Degree in Clinical Psychology, I worked with teenagers in a 30 day lock-down facility. These kids were just weeks away from turning 18 and aging out of the Juvenile Justice System. This one boy, Kevin, who I had a soft spot for, held a knife to my throat in a kitchen stand-off late one night, pulling me into a butler's closet. As I was waiting to be rescued by one of my stronger colleagues, Kevin brushed my hair and sang to me, beautiful songs he had written to a mother who abandoned him when he was only two. He remembered the sweet smell of her hair. At his drug addicted mother's funeral, he asked his grandmother for scissors to cut a tuft of his mother's hair.
He carried it still, in his wallet, taped to a tattered Denny's napkin.
What would any of us be without our history? It can be our destiny or a chance to redo it differently, in a better way maybe. Like all of you, I love creating my characters. Sosie Bend, my heroine in Night Surfing loves vintage world globes and wears her mother's wedding band on her right ring finger. She wonders what people keep under their pillows at night and she drops pennies on the ground near elementary schools so children will find them and feel special, the way she did as a child. She loves the color blue, a blue within blue of sky meeting water on a summer's afternoon. Calling herself a Love Amnesiac, Sosie starts a blog called Love, Sosie promising to spend the rest of her life trying to find this one thing she really wants.
In the end, when we're lucky, our characters tell us who they are and the best we can do is to just stay out of their way and run with it. But on the days when they (or we!) are sluggish, not really in the mood to write (oh, yes, we ALL have those days!) ask yourself, what does my hero or heroine REALLY WISH FOR? The answer may surprise even you.

MARY KENNEDY EASTHAM, M.A., MFA, a 2010 Celebrity Achiever, is genre hopping right now. Her first book, The Shadow of a Dog I Can't Forget' - Poetry & Prose is in its 4th Printing, Mary is finishing up the last short story in her collection The Possibilities of Love, is halfway through her first novel Night Surfing, and she is thinking about writing the screenplay version of Night Surfing in a month-long writing contest challenge. She loves being a Guest Blogger, and she loves her four Golden Retrievers JoJo, Sabrina, Flynn and puppy Oliver. Check out her website at:

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Welcome Angela Kay Austin

1: Thank you so much for being here, Angela. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A. I know this probably sounds so ordinary, but I’ve written for as long as I can remember. Every since I was kid doodling in my pink and white diary about my secret crushes, I’ve written down my every thought, and then as I neared my teen years, I began to change those stories into articles for magazines.

2: What inspired you to write?

A. My inspiration came from everything around me. I was a pretty quiet child, and writing gave me a way to express myself. Reading gave me a way to explore, and I one day Judy Blume’s Are You There God It’s Me Margaret? Made me believe I could really try to merge the two or at least that might be fun to try. The character in her book spoke to me, and the way she told me the story inspired me to try to do the same.

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?

A. I like the creative process: determining the way that my characters will interact with each other, layering in the emotion, and hopefully bring my characters to life. By the time I finish a book, I’m in love with all of them. The research side of telling the story usually bogs me down: waiting on return phone calls, going to the library, or just surfing the net. Sometimes you’re researching such a small tedious fact, but you need it for the authenticity of the story.

4: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing? Movies.

A. SyFy is my guilty vice. If not that, then you can find me in a movie theatre or a theatre house somewhere. I love everything creative. I also love live concerts, but I prefer to be up close, and personal vs. the huge venues.

5: Which authors do you like to read?

A. Jeanine Frost is my latest addiction, but so many are on my shelf: Charlaine Harris, Christine Feehan, Sherrilyn Kenyon, J R Ward, and Karen Marie Moning. Outside of romance: Barbara Kingsoliver, Wally Lamb, Jane Green, Tony Morrison.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?

A. I guess that one of the reasons I love to write…is to connect with people around me, so if they read one of my books, I’d love them to send me an email, and let me know what they did or didn’t like about it. In this world of texting, and computers, I feel like one of the things people just don’t do that much of anymore is take the time to really know the next person. So, I love writing stories about people taking chances, and not giving up on possibilities.

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.

A. Love’s Chance released on February 11th. It is a #1 bestseller for Red Rose Publishing.
Here’s a blurb: To pay back her parents and prevent the loss of their family business, Sinclair Mosley leaves her family and friends behind. Pennsylvania doesn’t welcome her with open arms, but Chance O’Malley does. At the risk of losing everything that brought her to Pennsylvania, including her family’s restaurant, Sinclair must decide if she’s willing to take a chance on love.

Readers can read an excerpt at my website, and purchase from Red Rose Publishing.

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?

A. My only tip would be not to give up. No matter what anyone else believes, if you feel in your heart that writing is what you want to do, then write. Write anything for anybody anytime. Just find a way to accomplish what you want. Each step you take gets you closer to your goal.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people?

A. No, but I base them on things I’ve experiences, and things that my friends have experienced, as well as things I read or see. Physically, I might use celebrities to help me visualize my characters.

10: Where do you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?
A. Love’s Chance is based in Pennsylvania where I lived for 3 years, and I based the characters on things I’d seen while there.

11: What are you currently working on?

A. My next piece is set in my hometown of Memphis, TN, and it’s based on a lot of the things that we see happening today in America: economy, job loss, loss of relations and families, etc. So many people have had to determine how to make a new beginning, and that is what this book is all about.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

A. It took me about 15 years before I had my first book published, and Love’s Chance was not my first manuscript, so if there is something out there that someone is passionate about doing, I truly hope they do not give up on it. It’s wonderful to see a dream come true!

Here’s an excerpt from Love’s Chance    
Chance pulled out a chair beside Sinclair and sat. He leaned back and rested his arm across the back of her chair. His thigh touched hers underneath the table. “Your presentation was really good. I think you were the only one who actually kept to the time limit.” He ran a hand across his military hair cut. “How long was Raquel up there? Forty-five minutes.”

She could feel her cheeks redden due to his nearness. “I think so.”

Chance’s look fixed on something across the room; he shifted in his seat. His body leaned closer to hers. “So, when are you leaving? I’ll walk you to your car.”

She followed his stare. Raquel Dickinson, Bakery Category Manager, stalked in their direction. Her broad, angry movements destroyed the effect of the body hugging dress she wore. Reddish blonde hair flowed like untamed fire over bare shoulders.

Sinclair searched the room for her boss, Daniel Houser. She caught a glimpse of his back as he and his wife slipped out of the dining hall. As the breath escaped her, her shoulders slumped. Not so much as a pat on the back or job well done. For some reason, he spent as little time as possible around her. He wasn’t a bad guy, but he definitely was not the ‘go to’ guy in case of emergency. “It looks like I can leave at any time.”

Chance stood, and pulled out Sinclair’s chair. “Let’s go.”

Raquel reached their table before they could leave. “Calling it a night so early?”

He stood between the two women, and reached for Sinclair’s hand to help her stand. “Yeah Raquel it’s been a long night, and I’ve got a meeting in the morning.”

Raquel leaned around Chance. “Sinclair, do you mind if I walk out with the two of you?”

“Of course not. Are you ready?”

Chance released Sinclair’s hand, but walked closely behind. “Raquel, where did you park?”

She snaked her arm around his. “Next to your truck.”

“And Sinclair what about you?”

“I am on the other side of the lot. You really don’t have to walk me all of the way.”

“Sinclair, Chance and I would not dream of letting you walk to your car alone.” Raquel rubbed her hand up and down Chance’s arm, and looked up into his eyes. “Would we Chance?”

Chance stopped underneath the awning in front of the banquet hall. “Sinclair, wait here. Come on Raquel.” Chance and Raquel walked into the night toward their cars.

Sinclair didn’t wait; she headed in the direction of her car. Footsteps behind her caught her attention.

“Sinclair. Stop.” Chance’s voice was stern. He blocked her path. “I asked you to wait.”

“I know, but I didn’t want to be any trouble. You and Raquel…you seemed—”

“We seemed what? If you have a question, ask it.” His stare was amplified by his silence.

She had questions, but they didn’t matter. She shook her head from side to side. “No. It’s really none of my business.”

“None of your business?” Chance walked slow and close.

“No. You and Raquel have your own thing.”

“We do have a history, Sinclair, but—”

Sinclair stopped at her car door. “But it’s none of my business.”

Chance stepped in closer. “What if I want that to change?”

She took a step back. “It couldn’t”

He stepped back, and stared. “It couldn’t or you wouldn’t let it?”

“Chance, I can’t.” She turned to open her car door. “Thanks for walking me to my car.” She stepped back to open the door, for a moment her body fit into his. She slid into her car, and shut the door behind her.

Friday, March 26, 2010

More Snow

Here it is almost the end of March and we have more snow. It doesn't really surprise me, after all, it is still March and although it's officially Spring on the calendar, it's really still winter. In fact April often brings snow. We've had big snowstorms the last weekend in April several times. I'm not really complaining and fortunately, we only got a light covering, but after all that beautiful warm sixty degree days to go back to the thirties, well I don't mind telling you, it feels a whole lot colder. Fortunately, it's going to get warmer tomorrow and by the end of the week, it's supposed to be back in the sixties. I'll take that.  At least the sun is shining today.
I'm still hard at work on my WIP. Hopefully, I'll have it finished before long. For some reason, this is a slow mover. Some books just flow and in a matter of weeks, the rough draft is finished. Others, like this one, seem to take forever. Of course, the fact that I was blocked for a whole year on this one didn't help.  This was the first book I ever plotted out and outlined. I'll never do that again. A speaker at our chapter RWA meeting suggested trying it. Big mistake for me. I don't write that way. I've never written that way. They suggested writing a synopsis first, which I did. Unfortunately, I found it difficult to waver from that synopsis. It took a whole year to forget it and move on. I was then able to come up with new ideas and move on. So hopefully, this one will be finished soon. 
Happy Spring everyone.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Welcome, Deb Denson

1: Thank you so much for being here, Deb. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A. I toyed around with little projects in my teens, like poetry and a children’s book. The real kicker was working on a script for a movie called The Summoning with a friend of mine. I loved working on the back-story of that movie – I realized I had a knack for that detail.

2: What inspired you to write?
A. Another friend asked me if I fantasized. When I answered yes, he asked as a whole story – beginning, middle and end? It was then I began to think about those fantasies as a complete story. Mostly, my inspiration is other authors who excel at spinning good yarns – like Patrick O’Brian and Anya Seaton. I love historical fiction!

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?
A. When I really get going I love the way a plot sort of evolves on its own. My first novel began from a personal fantasy about being the only woman on a ship full of men. I look at it now and see that framework, but oh boy, did it take off from there and went directions I never, never expected!

There are sections of the book that are segues. Those are the posers and the areas where I get stuck for inspiration. Sometimes its historical back-story and it’s a struggle not to bore the reader!

4: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing?
A. I was a costumer in the theatre for years, and I still dabble in sewing – mostly now for my 5 & 7 year-old nieces. I love gardening, watching movies, reading, and spending time in good conversation with my dear friends.

5: Which authors do you like to read?
A. Patrick O’Brian over and over! Michael Crichton (what a shame is gone). JD Robb, Anya Seaton, JRR Tolkien, Terry Brooks and Barbara Hambly’s early works.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?
A. For many years I subscribed to the expectation that my goal as a woman was to marry and have children. This was not an unpleasant prospect by any means, but God had other plans for me. After many years of living alone and wishing it were otherwise, at last I am very proud to say I have embraced my “single-hood” and try to celebrate it every day! I love the romance of being a “spinster’, living with two cats, but my life is my own and I make every effort to live it fully.

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.
A. Magician’s Spell is a historical, adventure romance set in the 1800s, during the Napoleonic war. Although the title implies it, the book is not about magic, unless of course we are talking about the enchantment surrounding Lady Johanna Cornehl and Captain Harold “Hal” Monroe. Magician, is a privateer commanded by Capt. Monroe. Although he has a history with Johanna’s father, the lord admiral, she is not aware of that when she steps aboard Magician to be transported to England. What begins on that three week trip leads Johanna and Hal through adventures involving treason, the theatre, an illicit affair, and a desperate rescue attempt. Magician remains a constant throughout their exploits and figures prominently in bringing the two together in more than matrimony.

The website is:

My blog is:

Magician’s Spell will be published as an e-book from Red Rose Publishing on March 25, 2010. Their website:

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
A. I just finished reading On Writing by Stephen King, who said the one question he gets asked most is, and I paraphrase, would you write if it weren’t for the money? That question is asked in the last chapter of The First Five Pages (another excellent book I recommend on writing). Of all the questions that need a true soul-searching, honest answer – that is the one. If you say yes – persevere.

On a practical note – concentrate a lot of energy, do a lot of research on your query letter. Each time you get a letter saying: not this time – re-work that letter. Tweak until it gets you on your way! Do not despair.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people?
A. Oh yes, but usually only a facet of that person. For instance in the second book I have a character who is a clairvoyant. I actually knew a man who was so keen in reading people by what they said or didn’t say, he was suspected to be a mind reader. It was this aspect of his character I loved and used.

10: Where do you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?
A. I plowed through all of Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin books and couldn’t help, but wonder if a headstrong woman was placed aboard those wooden communities comprised mostly of men, what havoc would she bring. Surprisingly, I found I was working out my relationship with my own father through the character of Johanna Cornehl. It was quite eye opening.

11: What are you currently working on?
A. The third book of the series which I have tentatively named Ruse de Guerre. It takes a character from Magician’s Spell, Dr. James Emrys, and develops his romantic attachment. The book’s title reflects tricks used in war to fool the enemy. The lead female character has her own secret she uses to survive, and it certainly gets in the way of her love life! The second book, His Apprentice, is written, but requires editing. It takes the characters of Timothy Ruhl and Emily Petranella from Magician’s Spell and weaves their romance, or attempted romance.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?
A. My father was unhappy being anywhere for any long period of time while I was growing up. We lived in Michigan, Panama, California and Indiana, but never for more than five years. (he was buried at sea, so he continues to roam) I am pleased to say I have planted myself in Royal Oak, Michigan, with no plans to relocate. And I love it here!!

Of course, there’s my plan and God’s plan. You just never know.

Magician’s Spell

As Hal ascended the companionway ladder up onto the main deck, he looked up at the afternoon sun. One bell was struck; marking the beginning half hour of the first dogwatch. Satisfied that preparations were well under way for departure on the morning tide, he ordered his launch, crossed the bay and made his way back to Willowood.

Here he was pleased to discover Johanna patiently awaiting his return. She greeted him at the door and escorted him into the great room where she suggested, and he eagerly accepted, indulging in some music. Settling on a piece that equally addressed their skills, Hal led, picking out the opening notes of the fugue, after which Johanna ably followed. Three compositions later, she rose from the bench and stretched.

“We have about two hours before we have to leave.”

“Where are we going?”

Taking her signal, Hal put the instrument into its case and closed the lid.

“To Naomi’s…for dinner. I am sorry, Hal, didn’t I tell you?”

“Yes, you probably did, but in my haste to—”

“—to leave your wife—again.”

Sheepishly, he looked at her and said, “My love, it was your suggestion.”

“So it was. Come, husband, let’s get ready for dinner, shall we?”

Lacing his fingers in the hand she had placed through his arm, he asked, “It’s five fifteen. Do you need so much time to get ready, love?”

She smiled in response. He was delighted to see her sense of humor returned. He escorted her up to the bedroom and closed the door. Taking her in his arms, he held her close for a few minutes, then easing the embrace, he leaned back and kissed her on the forehead.

“Come,” she said. “You can do better.” She sighed and continued, “I am so tired of people treating me like I am going to break. I am made of tougher stuff. Come on, man.”

Johanna reached forward, grabbed him by the front of his shirt and yanked him toward her. Her lips covered his and her hands wandered over his chest and his back.

Hal delighted in the unexpected pleasure of her assault. He agreed that his approach had been tenuous of late, so he let her take the initiative. But, until his apprehension faded, he limited his response to gently returning her kisses.

“Not good enough, sailor,” she reached down and unfastened the front of his breeches. “Get on with it.”

Her boldness transformed his tenderness to hunger. They had only a single interlude since their wedding day. Never had being physically chaste numbered among his expectations for the relationship. Johanna slid her hand inside his breeches, caressing him shamelessly. Her touch was agony, yet he was still uncertain at handling her physically.

In the next moment, his indecision proved moot, for she pushed him onto the bed. Staring up at the ceiling, he felt his breeches and drawers dragged down around his boots. Climbing atop of him, she pushed his shirt up around his neck and then caressed and nibbled, moving from nipple to nipple and back to his lips. While straddling him, she unfastening her bodice and tossed it off into a corner of the room. Her skirt and stays quickly joined it. Taking him by the wrists, she placed his hands on her breasts. She then leaned down and whispered in his ear.

“Am I going to have to do it myself?”

Not waiting for his answer, she tugged her petticoat up around her thighs, and rising to her knees, she reached between the two of them and guided him in place. He groaned.

“Finally, the man says something.”

Her head thrown back, she laughed as she rode him to the peak of pleasure. In the end, she fell across his chest, her hair spilling onto his face.

“Right,” was all he managed to say as he brushed the hair away from his mouth. Facetiously he asked, “Do you think we are going to be late for dinner?”

Friday, March 19, 2010

Welcome Kat Holmes

1: Thank you so much for being here, Kat. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A. I have written as far back as I can remember. But I owe getting published to an author friend of mine who encouraged me to try submitting. When your writing idol tells you to do something, you don’t argue.

2: What inspired you to write?
A. I just love stories and the way words work together to paint a picture.

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?
A. What I like most is creating new worlds and people and putting them into situations. What I like least is writing the dreaded synopsis.

4: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing?
A. I play a lot of video games and I like to watch certain TV shows. I also read a lot. I never ever want to forget why I love writing so much but getting too busy to read.

5: Which authors do you like to read?
A. That’s a very long list. But just to name a few, N.J. Walters, Kresley Cole, Yasmine Galenorn, Christine Feehan, Lynsay Sands, and of course you. This is just a small list though. It could go on until the end of time.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?
A. Gee that’s a tough one. I think the one thing I most want people to know is that I really don’t get the kind of action, in or out of the bedroom that my characters do. LOL

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.
A. My current novel is called Voice In The Night and it’s an Autumn Rose tale about an older woman and a younger man. It can be found on Red Rose Publishing’s website and I can be found either on my website at or on my blog at

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
A. Never give up no matter how many rejections you get. If you truly believe in yourself and your writing it will happen. Also, don’t take rejections personally. I know easier said than done, but really, not all rejections come because they don’t like your work. Some come because that particular publisher doesn’t take that exact genre. Keep trying.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people?
A. Sometimes but not always. My current heroine is only partly inspired by a real person but in my next book the characters are inspired by Greek mythology.

10: Where do you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?
A. My ideas come from lots of places, myths, pictures, real life. Voice In The Night actually came about from a real life experience of someone I know. I won’t say more than that though.

11: What are you currently working on?
A. I am currently working on book five in a brand new series for Red Rose. The series is called Gods At Work and book one comes out in July. It’s titled Working Under Covers.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?
A. I have two cats who are my world. In fact, they are how I chose my pen name.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Welcome, Toni V. Sweeney

Serpent’s Tooth is my own variation on the Faust legend, a meshing of a romance with slowly-encroaching horror, but Travis Brandt is no scholar bargaining his soul to the devil for power alone. He’s a naïve young Nebraskan, marrying early and orphaned earlier, talented and intelligent but having nothing to look forward to but a poorly-paid teaching position in an incorporated town on the Great Plains. And then his Big Break comes and he’s whisked away to Hollywood… and its contingent dangers, swept into the maelstrom of sex, drugs, rock and roll…and demon worship. Too late seeing the danger, and the only escape is to die, he spends the next quarter century in oblivion…until he meets a former fan, a woman who loves him not for the man he was, but for the man he has become. In her he sees his salvation, but his past rears its deadly head.
Serpent’s Tooth was the result of a dream, only one word remaining when I awakened: the name Hildebrand. Two days later, I heard the name again in a late night TV movie and knew I had to write a story using it. Perhaps there was a lingering taste of composer Paul Williams’ rock-horror-opera The Phantom of the Paradise. All I know is that the story of the young man from Nebraska, so determined to be a success he dares risk his immortal soul to gain what he wished, only to have it all explode in his face, came easily to the keyboard. It’s a horror story, yes, but it’s also a love story, the story of a man’s love for a woman which is so strong he dares risk his already-jeopardized soul to protect her.
I tried to make my description of the era as accurate as possible, and haunted the local libraries for weeks, researching the ’80, especially regarding the music, and current events and I also wanted to combine the Southern atmosphere of my younger days with the place I now reside, Nebraska. This, however, is no story of young love, reckless and unheeding. Both the hero and heroine are mature in that respect, adults who’ve already lived a good part of their lives before they meet. Melissa is a Southerner, a woman in her early 40’s who goes on a cruise to ease the memories of her mother’s death. Travis is in his 50’s, a man who fled to his Nebraska roots in order to hide, a man once ready to do whatever was necessary to become a success, but now finds himself afraid to love again because of a drug-induced promise he made two decades before. They are opposites—one a sheltered old maid, the other an orphan who’s always taken care of himself—each seeing something in the other to fulfill a need. Two lonely people thrown together by Fate and a love which is going to be tested in the worse way imaginable.

The story is told in a series of flashbacks which mirror events taking place in the present.

Opening with singer Hildebrandt’s decision to quit Hollywood forever, the story weaves back and forth between 2009 and the Eighties, reflecting how Hildebrandt, the most successful rock star of that era and an actor who had brought to life one of the most famous horror characters ever created, disappears from his beachhouse, never to be heard of again, only to surface twenty years later as Travis Brandt, rancher and lover of Melissa Powers, a sheltered librarian from Savannah. (An interesting aside, Travis is the great-great-grandson of Will Brandt, hero of Walk the Shadow Trail, a Western I wrote a dozen years ago.)

What should have been a happy ending, with two people starting a new life together, is only the beginning, as the horror Travis left behind when he fled Hollywood is now awakened to once more reach out and threaten the former movie star and his new bride.
It’s a different type of story for me. I hope readers of romance will be charmed by Travis’ love for Melissa. Though they may not like the ending, they might be moved to admit it was the logical one. I know readers of horror will appreciate its suitable irony.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Welcome Kissa Starling

1: Thank you so much for being here, Kissa. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A.I believe I’ve written, in some form or another, all of my life. I always did well in school writing stories especially if I could insert my wild imagination into them. I didn’t write with the intent to publish until a few years ago when I happened upon a writing contest.

2: What inspired you to write?
A.I love putting my thoughts on paper. The thought of other people, all over the world, reading my work is amazing to me. I have a pretty demanding muse and she incites me to stay really busy.

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?
A.Hmmm, I absolutely love researching. I often spend too much time browsing my subject when I should be writing. I love getting emails from readers who tell me what they thought about my stories. I’m an impatient person and I don’t always like waiting. Waiting for word on a submission…waiting before I edit stories….waiting for release days…you get the point! haha

4: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing?
A.I enjoy spending time with my family. We play a lot of cards and board games. We watch a lot of movies and have our favorite television shows. Just on my own I do yoga, walk, meditate and oh yeah, I write. There’s no other way to get this stuff out of my head.

5: Which authors do you like to read?
A.I like a variety of authors and genres. My favorite book is Gone With the Wind. I used to be hooked on V.C. Andrews when I was younger. I read Nora Roberts once in a while but my tastes have turned more to erotic romance lately. I love Anne Rice’s Sleeping Beauty series.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?
A.Pet Peeve: people who don’t do what they say they’re going to do.

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.
A.Right now I have several short stories with Red Rose Publishing. Last year I began the Lifestyle Series and I’ve just submitted book four, Chalan’s Story. Book three should be published in the next few months. This series focuses on the reality of BDSM relationships. You can find out more at

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
A.Never give up. Rejections are par for the course. My favorite saying is revamp and resubmit. You never know when your story will hit the right editor, reader, etc.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people?
A. I’ve never based a character on a real person per say but I do people watch a lot. I pick up gestures, dialects and even characteristics from people and then use some of those to mold my fictional characters.

10: Where do you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?
A. I get ideas from life. The news, the paper, accounts from friends and family all play a part in what inspires me to think of a beginning. It’s all imagination from there on.

11: What are you currently working on?
A. I’m working on a short fetish story and my first full length novel right now. Wish me luck on both.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?
A. I have a yahoo group where I post freebies, information about contests and upcoming releases as they happen. Here’s the link:
I’d love visitors to learn more about me at my website:

It’s been fun! Thanks.

Cracker Cowgirl

A lesbian historical

“I assume you’re a runner?”

“Yes, sir. I am.”

Halley had almost forgotten she was impersonating a man. Luckily the woman didn’t notice.

“What’s that?” The young girl pointed to Halley’s side. There was no time to hush her fears.

“I won’t apologize fer nothing either, sir. That Massa Kane is an evil sort. Beds with little girls and laughs when they get with child. I know that last part from experience. Beats men and women alike. Guess that’s somethin’ you know a bit about.” The slaves eyes rested on the whip.

“How old are ya, Seginta?”

“Nineteen. I ‘spect you’ll be taking me back to Greenway?”

“I don’t beat people with my whips. These are for herding cows. What’s Greenway anyway?”

“That be the name of the plantation I’s running from. It’s where Massa Kane broods his devil ways.”

Horses galloped towards them from way off in the distance. Men’s voices filled the air.

“Lay down.” Halley surprised even herself at how demanding the words came out. She flicked the whip towards the girl hoping the sound would terrify her enough to lay quiet.

“Are ya gonna kill me dead right here?” The pleading look tore at her heart. This was no time for explanations. “Do it- now!”

Seginta lay down and Halley shoved dead debris and dirt over her. Then she ran back to mount her horse. Of course the other men heard the shots and they’d wonder what she shot at.

“Giddyup.” Her heels dug into the mare’s sides urging her to move quicker.

“I’m here. It’s me, Hale Richardson. Dang ole alligators.”

The men formed a circle around her with their own horses very interested in the story from the newcomer.

“What happened? Did you catch one of those no good thieving scoundrels?”

Lewis rode up last and pulled the reins tight to his chest. “Are you okay, Richardson? I never shoulda’ left you alone on your first night.”

“No, no, I’m fine. I saw one of those gators we talked about and nearly jumped out o’ my skin. I got one shot off but completely missed ‘em.”

One of the men touched his thumb and forefinger to his chin and rubbed back and forth.

“Maybe we should go look fer ‘em.”

“Oh no. I saw him swim away. I’m sure he’s gone by now.”

The man, who seemed to be in charge, spit between her horse’s front feet. “I reckon that’s enough herdin’ for today. Let’s get back home. I say we start early tomorrow evenin’. Widow Mabry lost a few cattle this week. She can’t afford to lose one much less two. Maybe we can catch the thievin’ rascals.”

Michael Anders rode up next to Halley. The rest of the men dispersed rather quick ready to get home to a warm bed and their families. Each one of them sacrificed something to be a part of the Cow Calvary.

“Why don’t I drop by your place and we can ride in together tomorrow night, Hale. Where do you live again?”

Halley clicked her heels enough for the mare to begin her walk. “I live close out by widow Mabry. I’ll meet you there.”

The mare, which was already walking, broke into a canter and they fled the scene. She didn’t dare look back to see who may be watching. In fact she rode clear to the bend in the road before she even came to a stop. No one was behind her. No lights shone, no voices and no horses. The coast seemed to be clear.

She waited a half hour more for good measure and then turned the mare around to head back to the swamp. They didn’t pass anyone on the return visit. This is crazy, she thought. I’m risking my own life to help a slave.

The night became darker close to the swamp. If Halley hadn’t killed her with a bullet a snake or gator was sure to have ended her life by now.

Sprinkles of rain plopped onto Halley’s forehead. Before long the water would pound down to the ground and into the swamp, forcing the critters to take refuge. Not a good time to be this far into the Everglades.

Please Lord, give me twenty minutes. I’ll find her, throw the troublemaker over the hind end of my horse, and run like the wind to get home before we’re both kilt.

Halley dismounted and hurried to the spot where she’d left Seginta. The young slave was unconscious and lay right where she’d been covered up. Her limp body was easy to pick up and haul a few feet to the mare where Halley struggled to throw her over- up high, close to the neck. It’d be better to keep her in front. That way she could lean over the silent body and move at a faster pace.

Decision made, Halley threw her own leg over the horse and immediately squeezed her legs together and yelled, “Giddup!”

Available now at Red Rose Publishing

Welcome Heather Wildman

1: Thank you so much for being here, Heather. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?
A. Roseanne, thank you so much for having me!
I honestly don’t remember when I started writing. As soon as I could hold a pencil I scribbled things no one, including myself, could read. It wasn’t until 8th grade and one special teacher that I started writing for me instead of everyone else.

2: What inspired you to write?
A. Everything. I’m an introvert. Writing was, and always will be, my favorite form of self-expressio

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?
A. I like the way a story flows, the way emotions paint their way onto a page and create something beautiful from even dark emotions. I don’t really DISLIKE anything about writing.

4: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing?
A. Read, walk, play with my kids at the park. It’s the little things in life that are the most important.

5: Which authors do you like to read?
A. I’ll read about anything. Roald Dahl is a personal favorite. I enjoy Mark Twain, Stephen King, and many, many lesser known authors.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?
A. I don’t write because I want a paycheck, I write because I love it. PERIOD. Once that love dies, I’ll stop writing. End of story.

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.
A. “Ebin’s Heart” is my debut novella. It’s a story of hate and bias, the truths of a past and the salvation of the future, and love and loss set in a science fiction/ futuristic world.

You can purchase the story here: and read more about me and my other escapades on my blog, here:

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
A. First and foremost, WRITE. Second, be uncomfortable. If you are all comfy and cozy, you aren’t growing. Network, no matter how hard it feels. Promote, no matter how difficult it may be. Don’t expect instant results, it just doesn’t happen. PERIOD. And let go of a little bit of pride. Publishers and editors are there to make money, don’t think you are too good to adapt, or you won’t get very far very fast.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people?
A. Some of the emotions are based on real life, but my characters are never intentionally based on those I know or have seen. Well, I did use certain family members, but which story, and which characters, I’ll NEVER tell. Mwahahaha! Other than that… No.

10: Where did you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?
A. “Ebin’s Heart” was a direct result of past experience coupled with bad news about my son’s heart, and the painful emotions it elicited. I talk about this in a guest blog, linked in the “You did what?” section of my blahg.

11: What are you currently working on?
A. I’m working on self-edits for a gothic/paranormal romance, and am also in the drafting process of a humorous paranormal mystery.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?
A. *grin* Do your readers want to ask anything? I’m an open book, and my pages are waiting to be filled. Please, ladies and gents, be my honorary muse. I’m happy to share.

Mini excerpt from Ebin’s Heart:

He pulled back the top cover. Bundled below were the rest of the pelts.

Ebin panicked. He tore through layer after layer, tossing them wherever they landed. When he grabbed the bottom layer, he stopped cold. A sticky mess coated his right hand. He dropped the fur and stared at the red slime on his fingers. Shock and panic filled him as recognition dawned.
Someone had been here. Someone had hurt his Eiva.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Welcome Marie Rochelle

1: Thank you so much for being here, Marie. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A. No… I want to thank you for having me. I really do appreciate it. I first started writing a little over five and a half years ago. My first book was Taken by Storm.
2: What inspired you to write?

A. I’ve always wanted to be a writer, but I finally got up the nerve one day and did it.

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?

A. Wow… what I love the most is having the characters in my head come to life. It’s so amazing to see how well the transform from my head into a story. I don’t think I’ve a least favorite thing about writing. I really do love all of it

4: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing?
A. I really do love to read or watch a good movie when I get a chance.

5: Which authors do you like to read?

A. I’ve so many favorites ones. It’s hard to only name a few.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?

A. I would like people to know that I’m pretty fun-loving and I try not to take life too seriously.

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.

A. My newest novel is called So Much Better. It’s the sequel to Desire. Here’s the blurb. It should be released on March 15th from Phaze Books.
Why them and not her? Keri Walker thought about those simple little words ever since her boss’ fiancée left him. There wasn’t a doubt in her mind she would be so much better for Richie if he only let her in.
Richie Davidson was devastated by the sudden loss of the woman he had been building a future with. Women were coming from left to right offering him comfort, but he wasn’t interested in them…. Because one unique beauty not seated ten feet outside his office door had already caught his eye.
You can find more info about it at my website.

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?

A. No matter what if writing is your dream…don’t give up on it.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people? A. Oh…now I can’t answer that can I? What would my family and friends think?

10: Where do you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?

A. All of my ideas just come into my head. Sometimes they come from a dream

11: What are you currently working on?

A. I’m currently working on Cole’s Surrender. It’s the last book in the Tycoon Club Series. Also, I’m almost finished with a new book called Roped into You.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

A. Yes… I would like all of my fans to know that I’m still working on More than Friends: Brad. The Last book in The Drace Brothers series. I haven’t forgotten about him.

I know that I’d be so much better for Richie than Deborah or Taylor. Keri’s thoughts were racing as she placed the pile of mail on her boss’ desk. They’re only interested in getting him into bed, but I want to be there for him when he’s hurting or just needs someone to confide in.

Keri knew she had to get her plan underway, so everything would be in place for the St. Patrick’s Day charity ball. The night was either going to make her relationship with Richie or she would finally realize he couldn’t or wouldn’t get over Kristy. She would have to move on to someone else no matter how much it broke her heart.

Moving away from Richie’s desk, Keri was on her way out the door when she noticed his jacket thrown across the arm of the couch in his office. Walking over to it, she picked it up and slid her arms through it. She got lost in the wonderful scent of Richie’s cologne. It was so sad how bad she had it for him and her feelings weren’t returned. Richie had never encouraged her feelings. They were something that happened to her over a period of time.

He possessed all of the redeeming qualities she was searching for in a man. He was loving, attentive, a good listener, honest; and it didn’t hurt that he was sexier than any Hollywood actor. She took one final whiff of Richie’s jacket and was about to take it off when she heard, “Keri, what are you doing wearing my jacket?”

She spun around so fast that she almost tripped over her own two feet. Her eyes grew twice their size when she spotted Richie standing in his office doorway staring at her like he couldn’t believe what he was seeing.

Think of a good lie quick!

“I was cold, so I put on your jacket,” saying the first thing that popped into her head hoping Richie believed her. “Do you want me to take it off?” Keri started to remove it only to have Richie come across the room and pull it back on her shoulders.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

It’s here!

                            Time to Live Again has officially been released by Red Rose Publishing.

                           Meet the characters:

 Rose Asbury – she knows she’s a grouch, but she doesn’t care.   All  she wants is for everyone to leave her alone. Is that too much to ask?
Stephen Daniels – the man next door. Rose puzzles him. All he wants to do is make friends with her, but she rejects his every attempt.

Sarah Daniels – Stephen’s eight year old granddaughter. She doesn’t like that Mrs. Asbury is rude to her grandfather. But she has a plan.

Mary – Rose’s sister who died two years earlier. She’s here to help Rose learn to live again.

Louise Jordan – Rose’s best and only friend. Louise has been trying to get Rose out of her self-imposed reclusion.

Can Stephen break through Rose's tough reserve? Is Louise successful in bringing her friend out of seclusion. Will Mary find the way to open Rose's heart again? What's Sarah's plan? Will Rose break the chains that hold her back from joining the real world?

Time to Live Again is available from Red Rose Publishing . Find it at

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Welcome Margaret Geyer

1: Thank you so much for being here, Margaret. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A. In June 2003 I took a writing class at Lakeland Community College from noted author June Lund Shiplett. I thought I was going to write a children’s book. 

2: What inspired you to write?
A. I have always loved reading. My husband told me I read so many books maybe it would be a good idea if I wrote one. I finally did something about it.

3: What do you like the most and the least about writing?
A. I love when my characters come alive in my head and begin to dictate the story.
     Rewrites are forever.

4: Are you currently working on?
A. Rewrite of my third novel – HOSTAGE IN LOVE.

5: What do you for fun and relaxation when not writing?

A. I love to paint – watercolors. I am a former art teacher. I also used to paint on silk and had my work displayed at a local art gallery.

6: Which authors do you like to read?
A. My favorite author of all times is Irving Stone. I encourage everyone to give him a try. He wrote biographical fiction. When he died I cried because there would be no more books.

Donna MacMeans writes wonderful historical romance. Then I also read the Linda Lael Miller, Debbie Macomber, J.D.Robb, Sandra Brown and many, many other authors. Of course I always read anything that you write.

7: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?
A. I love writing, painting, teaching and people. My family is very important to me.

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
A. Never give up your dreams. It’s what makes life worthwhile.

9: If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
A. That’s a hard one to answer. I’d love to be able to see all of the great art museums and stand in front of gorgeous paintings and sculptures. I love to travel by car so that I can see the countryside and imagine what the people are doing in the homes, stores, farms etc.

10: Tell me about your novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.
A. My novel FLAMES OF BETRAYAL is available on the Kindle from Amazon.

Website is

BETRAYAL began in my first writing class. We were told to write a story about ‘something blows up’. Minda’s U Haul trailer blows up and that begins her adventure in a small town in New Mexico.

Minda may be a bombshell when it comes to looks, but her life's a mess. Unexplained accidents, men anxious to help, the mob, and deep betrayals keep her life in chaos.

The novel I am working on now is another romantic suspense – HOSTAGE IN LOVE. A bank robbery, a hostage, a second chance for love, a question of survival and a hint of paranormal keeps suspense high and romance intriguing.

When Lt. Jake Morran responds to a bank robbery in progress, the last thing he expects to see is a robber in a Halloween mask escaping with his lover, Clare Kelley. During his search he relies on his training, strength, and an odd psychic connection he has with Clare to guide him. The only question is will Jake’s visions lead him to Clare before it’s too late?

Minda untied the towel at her waist and set it on the lounger. Alan forgot to breathe. Her long slim legs seemed to go on forever. When she pulled the T-shirt over her head, he stifled a groan. The black one piece suit fit like a glove. The high cut at the side accentuated her long legs. Her breasts were large and full. He was in trouble – deep trouble. He had to remember why he was there with her. Business be damned! His member throbbed.

Slipping off his shoes first, he tried to look nonchalant. Hard. He was rock hard. He didn’t want to take off his shorts. She’d see what she did to him. He turned his back and pulled down the khaki shorts and tossed them on a lounger. He made a beeline for the pool and jumped in to hide his hard-on.

It was a miracle that the water didn’t sizzle when he dove into the smooth water. Minda followed close behind, came up first, and began a fast breaststroke. Alan’s head broke the surface, saw her and immediately joined in. When they reached the end, they stood and smiled at each other.

She grabbed the bar at the end of the pool, and let her legs float along the surface. She began splashing. He jumped back out of the way. Those long legs drove him crazy. He pictured then wrapped around him, and his body responded. Damn, the cool water didn’t cool the heat throbbing in his loins. He was harder now than when he dove into the pool. What was it about her? He’d seen gorgeous, stacked females before, and landed them in his bed. He wanted her and wanted her quick, hard and forever. Shit, where did that ‘forever’ come from? Remember your job. He better say something.

“I didn’t know I invited an expert to join me.” God! Did that sound lame?

“I’m not an expert. I like to swim. Can you do the backstroke?”

“Yep, I can do that. When we get back to the other end, you can get out and enjoy the sun a while. I’m going to do a few laps.” Calm down the ache was more like it.

“You’re on.”

In seconds Minda let go of the rail, flipped to her back and began and excellent back stroke. Her breasts peaked above the top of the water, and Alan caught his breath. Shit. Close your mouth and swim. His powerful strokes pulled him through the water and past her. He reached the shallow end first. Minda swam closer. Her breasts strained at the black fabric of the suit. He took a deep breath as she stood next to him.

“You can get out and catch some rays. I’m going to do a few more laps before I get out.” He prayed he’d survive long enough to do it.

“Don’t be too long. I want company. Plus, I’ll need you to rub on my sunscreen. I don’t have a tan like you, and I don’t want to burn.”

“I’ll be out in a flash. Go on, now.”

She climbed out of the pool. Her tight little ass sent another surge straight to his groin. Whose idea was this? Shit. He submerged and began a frantic effort to regain some composure.

Four laps later, he pulled himself up and out of the pool. His eyes lowered as he walked to his lounger. He had to keep temptation at bay. One look and he’d be rock hard again. He grabbed his towel, dried his hair and sat. He looked over in time to see her reach for her sunscreen. His manhood hardened. He wrapped his towel around his waist to hide the evidence. God, what a knock-out. Long legs he imagined around his body. Boobs that begged his lips to suckle them. Whoa. Get your mind back on business. But, this one time there might be a side delight to business. Say something, fool.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Welcome, Carol Preflatish

1: Thank you so much for being here, Carol. First up is the obligatory question. When did you first begin writing?

A. I first started writing in high school when I worked on the newspaper. In 2000, my New Year's resolution was to write a novel. I did that, but it took me over a year to do it.

2: What inspired you to write?
A. It was a hobby when I first started out. I liked being creative and writing was the perfect outlet for that.

3: What do you like the most and least about writing?
A. I love it when I can sit to write and the words just flow. I write a lot over my lunch hour at work, and it's very frustrating when I'm on a roll, and I find it's time to go back to work. The two things that are my least favorite about writing is editing and writing a synopsis.

4: What do you do for fun and relaxation when not writing?

A. I love to work in my garden, go camping with my husband, read good mysteries, and watch movies.

5: Which authors do you like to read?

A. My favorite authors are James Patterson, Lisa Gardner, and the late Robert B. Parker.

6: What’s the one thing you’d most like people to know about you?

A. I think I have a great sense of humor.

7: Tell me about your current novel, where I can find it and your website/blog.

A. My current novel is called "Love, Lies & Deceit." It's a romantic suspense about a CIA training officer who falls in love with his trainee. After he is arrested for treason, he asks her to help him prove his innocence. She has to decide if she trusts him enough to put her career and life at risk to help him. Published by Red Rose Publishing, and you can find a link to it on my web site,

8: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors?
A. Don't be discouraged if you get a rejection letter. I had a whole stack before I finally sold my manuscript.

9: Do you base your characters on real-life people?

A. I don't base my characters on any one particular person, but take characteristics from several different people and put them into one character.

10: Where do you get your ideas and what inspired you to write this book?
A. I don't really have a set way to get my ideas. Mostly, I just think them up. However, the book I am working on now is loosely based on a real mystery that happened near where I live.

11: What are you currently working on?
A. My current project is about a New York City writer, Jaime Wilson who wants the Assistant Editor job at Real Mystery Magazine. In order to get it, she has to write a kick-ass story, and what could be better than a 30-year old unsolved murder in a small town.
When Jaime visits Royal, Indiana to investigate, she soon finds that someone in the town doesn't want the mystery solved. After she becomes the next target, handsome Sheriff Ben Hunter comes to her rescue. She didn't count on falling in love with the sheriff, and he didn't think he would have to work so hard to keep her safe.

12. Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

A. In addition to writing fiction, I have also written a cookbook called "Masters & Disasters of Cooking." It's a collection of comical stories about some of my unbelievable cooking disasters and also some of my masterpieces. A wonderful recipe accompanies each story and you can find where to buy it on my web site. I also write a food blog that can be found at
Thank you so much for hosting me today. I have enjoyed talking with you.

And I’ve enjoyed talking with you. Thank you for visiting and good luck with your book.

Excerpt from "Love, Lies & Deceit":

Back on the highway, Julie took the George Washington Memorial Highway to Alexandria and to her apartment. When she walked in the door, a strange feeling came over her. She turned on the light and looked around the room. Everything looked in its place. She put her keys and purse on the table and walked into the kitchen. That's when she noticed the glass sitting next to the sink, used. She knew she hadn't dirtied a glass that morning. She walked into the living room and got her gun from the desk drawer. The only place someone could be hiding in her apartment was the bathroom or the bedroom.

She walked toward the bathroom. The door stood ajar. With her foot she pushed it all the way open and turned on the light. No one was inside, or hiding in the shower. Once in the hallway, she stepped toward the bedroom. This door was open, but the room inside was dark. With gun in one hand, she reached in to flick the switch with the other. But, before she could turn the light on, a hand grabbed her arm with the gun and flung her on the bed. Someone landed on top of her and pinned down her hand with the gun. Her attempt to scream was stifled because a hand clasped over her mouth. She tried to struggle, but he was too strong.

"Stop fighting me and don't scream." The man took the gun out of her hand.
"I'm going to take my hand away from your mouth. You aren't going to scream, are you?"

She shook her head no. Gradually, he removed his hand from over her mouth until she was able to speak. "Get off me, you bastard!" She had recognized her assailant's voice.

He rolled off and she turned on the light. Jason stood on the other side of the bed from her. "What the hell do you think you're doing?"
"I needed to talk to you."
"You couldn't pick up the phone and call me? I would have come to your apartment." She rolled her neck to make sure she was okay.
"My phone is being monitored."
"What do you want?"
"I need your help, but first I need to know if I can trust you." He swallowed hard. "Did you have anything to do with the drop in Austria, resulting in my arrest?"
She looked at her gun in his hand. "You still have my gun. How I answer your question determines what you do with it.
He placed her gun on her bed. "I'm sorry. I didn't realize I still had it. Julie, I have to know if you were involved in some way."
She laughed. "I must be a pretty damn good spy if you need to ask me that. No, I had nothing to do with it."
He closed his eyes and took a deep breath, dropping his head. "I believe you."
You can purchase "Love, Lies & Deceit" at

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Spring is in the air and so is romance

We have a slight warming trend promised for the weekend and I can't wait.  We just got a new puppy, a snorkie (yorkie/schitzu). He's adorable, but what a handful. He's so active. He absolutely exhausts me. I'd forgotten how it was to train a puppy.  Worse part is, my bichon isn't overly excited to have this newcomer. That surprised me becaue he's always been very social with other dogs and loves to play. Not so with this one. Whenever Oliver (that's what we finally named him  and that's another story in itself) is in the room, Toby (the bichon) goes in the bedroom or basement. I've never seen him react like that before.

As Spring approaches, I've invited my fellow authors to do a blog interview. It'll be fun to see what authors write, what they like and how they come up with thier ideas. I'm looking forward to it.