Monday, May 31, 2010
Find out how far Kayla is willing to go when sex is on the line.
Kayla has been squirming in her seat for months. Every day the gentle hum of the engine pulses between her thighs as she sits in the back of the bus waiting for the hard male body to board. Today must be her lucky day. He decides to squeeze himself in the backseat beside her. It is the perfect opportunity for her to make her move. After months of empty orgasms, Kayla is finally ready to put her money where her fantasies are.
One side of his mouth lifted in a smirk. He swivelled in toward her. "Is there something I can help you with?"
"There is, actually." Without thinking, her hands made their way to her thighs inching the hem of her skirt further up with every gentle stroke. "Would you say you were the kind of man who can get things done?"
He swallowed hard. "Yes."
His eyes danced. Lust licking the rim like emerald flames. "I have been looking for the right man to help me with a certain... task."
Her right hand found the soft satin that covered her sex and began a slow glide along her seam.
"What kind of task?" He watched her intently, licking his lips, his hands clenching as they rested on his legs.
Kayla’s own soft strokes had her aching, her skimpy undergarment soaked in her thick cream. Her finger hooked the fabric and pulled it aside, exposing her swollen lips. She could smell her desire; it hung in the air, sweet and musky.
She gave in to her lust and plunged a finger into her slit then coated her pink, swollen flesh. She circled her tiny nub, coaxing it from behind its hood as she made her request.
"I want to come."
Gina Gordon is an erotica and romance author living in Ontario, Canada. To learn more about Gina, check out her website
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
This is just some of what is going to be given away at my Big! Huge! Reader Contest! this June.
Three of the boxes each hold bags, books, and goodies I brought back from the RT Booklovers Convention and one box holds a t-shirt, blanket, water bottle and, amongst other things, a Pink...um, actually, you'll have to wait until June 1st to find that out!
So, my advice is to use the "follow" button I added to the right column of my blog for just this occassion and prepare to talk books. It's all happening on Tilly Greene's Hot Thoughts Blog throughout June and the more days you visit and comment, the more chances you have to win that one box.
WARNING! Red hot romances ahead!
Hot Thoughts Blog|Facebook|Twitter
Friday, May 28, 2010
It’s no secret that romances are getting more explicit these days. A book promising a series of hot, steamy encounters between two people seems about as daring as a volume of crocheting techniques next to titles promising bondage, threesomes and foursomes, and unusual positions or situations that merit “buyer-beware” warnings.
So I decided to try an experiment. Why not write a short book with loads and loads of sex, dispensing with all but the most minimal plot and character development? Cynics have suggested all along that romance is really just soft porn aimed toward women. Now I could put that theory to the test. Would I end up with the ultimate erotic romance? A foray into existentialist erotica? A diskful of porn?
So I decided to try an experiment. Why not write a short book with loads and loads of sex, dispensing with all but the most minimal plot and character development? Cynics have suggested all along that romance is really just soft porn aimed toward women. Now I could put that theory to the test. Would I end up with the ultimate erotic romance? A foray into existentialist erotica? A diskful of porn?
After preparing a very basic outline, I started to write page after page of explicit description, forcing myself to use the kind of graphic words that the grande dames of 1970s bodice-rippers used to replace with phrases like “surging crimson manhood.” I have to say I learned a lot about what to do (and what not to do) to keep the sexual tension boiling.
Eventually, I had a rough draft. I also figured out what separates erotic romance from run-of-the-mill pornography. It isn’t the number of sex scenes, or naughty words, or whether or not one or more characters swing from the chandelier by a certain point in the story. It’s all about the yearning.
Think about those stories that start with a bold, explicit scene right on the first page. Generally, it isn’t the hero and heroine together. Most often, the hero is visiting an old flame or possibly a brothel, where minor characters offer him all manner of debauchery. Of course, none of that really interests him, even if he partakes in order to please his host(ess); he’s waiting for the heroine, whether he realizes it or not. And, though she can certainly hold her own once the action begins, it’s still less common for the heroine to indulge in meaningless sex. Even if she’s far from virginal, or presides over her own “hare-him” of willing guys, she soon stops in favor of fantasizing about, then winning, the hero. Along the way, there has to be plenty of longing, frustrated desire, and forced separation.
This would never be the case in either erotica or porn, both of which thrive on passionate, frequent, but ultimately nonemotional, encounters. Romance may be steamier than ever, but it’s not quite at the point where the story is just one bump-n-grind scene after another. I doubt it ever will be.
So… back to the experiment. The manuscript I now have isn’t quite erotica, and it definitely isn’t porn. Keeping the plot simple (at least at first—it became more complex as I went along) turned out to be a good idea, as it allowed me to focus more on the characters and why they want each other. My next step is to go back and deepen the relationship, exploring and helping them overcome the obstacles between them. I guess my bold experiment will end up looking a lot like a traditional romance after all.
And I’m perfectly content with that.
Cassandra Pierce’s vampire e-romance, HEIRS TO DARKISLE, is currently available for download from Siren-Bookstrand: http://www.sirenpublishing.com/cassandrapierce/ and from Amazon in both Kindle and paperback formats.
Readers can also visit her website at www.cassandrapierce.com and check her out on Facebook!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
My best friend and constant companion is a female Jack Russell Terrier. She’s short, cute and very active. That's her in the picture to the left. I like to refer to her as my little exercise plan. She makes sure I get off my butt several times a day to take her for her walks, a minimum of three a day. She can be very pushy at times. There’s a game we play, when she gets just a little too insistent on getting her own way. I call it – Who’s the Boss? Occasionally, she lets me win.
Sassi adopted me at the local shelter. I think the fates combined to throw us together. I picked out a nice quiet male spaniel cross that would lay quietly at my feet while I worked, but someone mixed up the paperwork. When I went to pick him up, the volunteer produced this under-nourished critter with a mischievous twinkle in her eyes. She wagged her tail and tried to bounce up high enough to lick my face, a difficult feat since she's only twelve inches tall. I was very doubtful, but the nice lady, after apologizing and explaining that the spaniel had gone elsewhere, told me that I could take her home and try her for a week. If it didn’t work out, I could take her back, no questions asked. Can you believe I fell for that?!
Well, I took her home and she ran around in manic circles for several hours before throwing herself on my bed and going to sleep. The shelter had named her Dash, but after watching her take over my house in less time than it takes me to cook dinner, I dubbed her Sassi. Since that day, she’s become the official greeter at my office, the kayak club's mascot and my sounding board when I’m plotting a new story. She makes me laugh, and adapts to just about anything I decide to do. She can swim, ride on the motorcycle, and walk for endless miles on those short leg. She knows how to be gentle with small children, and when the kids are old enough to play fetch she patiently teaches them what to do. My youngest grandson spent countless hours chasing her around the house to put the tennis ball back in her mouth after she’d dropped it at his feet.
Sometimes, when we’re sitting on the sofa sharing a snack in the evening, I wonder if she snuck into the office at the shelter and switched that paperwork herself. I wouldn’t put it past her!
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
This dream of mine lasted until I was 14 and met my future husband. Ah love has a funny way of sidetracking your life. I went on to become a teacher and a mother and never once regretted my decision.
As the years went on, the desire to tell stories never really left me. I'd always scribbled down some short story ideas, entered a few contests in university, etc., but not once did I ever consider becoming a writer. It wasn't until we moved from Canada to the USA for my husband's job that I rediscovered I could in fact have my cake and eat it too.
I started writing a book.
It was TERRIBLE.
Then I started another. And a third. On the fourth, I was getting worried. Maybe I wasn't cut out for this whole "writer" thing. Maybe I should shelve this dream along with the movie director job and leave well enough along?
At the same time I was reading a lot. Ellora's Cave quickly became one of my favorite places to get books. The stories were fascinating, well written, without the restrictions mainstream books seemed to have on them.
I thought, I can do this too! So cracking my knuckles, I started book number five - The Bond That Ties Us. It took me a while (and a whole lot of blushing), but I found myself really enjoying telling the story. There was nothing I couldn't do! I finally was the director and creator I'd always wanted to be. Fortunately, Ellora's Cave agreed.
I'm now celebrating my tenth release with EC and I couldn't be more thrilled. Now, not only do I get to explore new worlds, sexy heroes and heroines, I can honestly say I've accomplish what I'd originally wanted to do when I was seven. I'm a story teller. :)
My tenth EC release is my Fem Domme ménage, Mistress Rules. I always love to hear from readers and writers alike. Please stop by my website www.christinedabo.com to check out some of my other books, or to come chat on my blog. I'm also over at Twitter as Christine_dAbo!
Thanks to the Romance Studio for having me here today.
*does a snoopy dance*
When Faris steps into his friend and mentor’s inner sanctum, he doesn’t expect to find Stella—a leather-clad Dominatrix. He can only watch as Ulric, the most powerful man in the sector, drops to his knees and throws himself at Stella’s mercy. Faris must decide whether to walk out the door, leaving his friend behind, or to put himself into the hands of a woman who demands nothing less than his absolute surrender.
Ulric knows Faris holds himself responsible for the devastating attack on the colony outpost. If Faris doesn’t learn how to forgive himself, the young man will be on the road to emotional disaster. His only hope is to convince Stella to bring Faris into their lives as another submissive. Ulric must now put his feelings for Stella on the line while holding tight to the man he desperately wants beneath him.
“I am the Mistress.” The words poured from her mouth in clipped bites. “I’m the one he comes to for comfort.”
Faris snorted. “Pardon me, but from where I stand you don’t look that comforting.”
Stella growled, flexing her fingers at her side. “Be careful, or else I’ll show you exactly how painful I can make things.”
She didn’t like this at all. Ulric understood the details of their arrangement as well as she. They’d entered into a comprehensive contract before she ever set foot on his ship. He may guide the fates of three separate species in this sector of space, but here, in this room, she was the ruler of all. That included deciding who could enter her domain. He should have said something.
A soft moan caught her attention. In the corner of the room, hidden in the shadows by half light, Ulric knelt on the floor. His head was bowed and his eyes were lowered. Normally, he’d be naked, only wearing his collar around his throat and a cage around his cock. She knew it was Faris’ presence holding him back from following their rules.
Things had to change.
“Ulric,” she spoke softly, but knew he heard the steel behind her words when he flinched. “I am very unhappy with you.”
His breathing stuttered and he rose higher on his knees, but said nothing. Stella took some satisfaction in the reaction, pleased he remembered himself enough to hold his tongue. Perhaps all was not lost. Moving forward, Stella made a wide circle around Faris as she approached her charge.
Ulric’s shirt was splayed open at the neck, the white a contrast against his dark skin. The rapid rise and fall of his chest told her all she needed to know about the tenuous hold he had on his control. He was close to the edge and needed her to jerk him back. She owed him that much.
“Ulric, why are you not properly attired? Answer me.”
He swallowed. “I did not want to offend Faris, Mistress.”
“And who is Faris that I should care about his feelings? You brought this…man into my home and blatantly disobeyed my rules. I’ve never before witnessed such disrespect. Get up!”
Ulric was on his feet as Faris reached her side. Faris grabbed her forearm, tugging her toward him. Without thinking, Stella grabbed his wrist and spun him around until she wrenched his arm behind his back, angled high enough to snap with just a little more pressure. Faris grunted, but did not struggle.
“What do you think you are doing?” Stella hissed. She was careful not to press her body to his. The last thing she wanted to do was give him the wrong impression of what was happening here.
“I thought you were going to hurt him. This isn’t his fault.” He pulled his arm against her grip. “Let me go.”
No, this wouldn’t do at all. “Why are you here?”
“I told you, Ulric asked me—”
“No. It is clear you don’t understand what is happening, or what Ulric needs. You have no role in the goings-on between us. So I’m asking you again. Why are you still here?”
Faris swallowed, but didn’t struggle further. “He needs me. He asked me to come, so I did. I’m not going to abandon him now. I couldn’t.”
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Silvano cradles a large mug of coffee. He glances at his watch and lets out a huff of irritation. His coffee companion was late or he was early? Due to the full moon being so close he couldn’t be sure. One thing he knew, his wolf was going nuts wanting to be let out to run free.
Silvano glances up to find a scruffy werewolf with a riot of wavy black hair, a stubble covered jaw and sky-blue eyes. Bishop. Selena had told him all about this werewolf.
“Silvano.” Silvano corrected and held out his hand. Bishop had a nice firm handshake. He looked Silvano directly in the eye which the pack alpha liked. It spoke of someone who didn’t have anything to hide.
Bishop took a seat across from him and ordered his coffee black with a bit of sugar. The table jumped as Bishop’s leg jiggled. A blush crept across his cheeks.
“Sorry, full moon’s near. I’m a bit nervous.”
“I can understand that. I feel the call too.”
“Ah, you’re a wolf too. Se didn’t tell me much about the meeting. Just sort of called me last minute told me where to be and here I am.”
Silvano rolled his eyes. “Just like her. She’s probably off torturing some other poor guy.”
Bishop snorted. “Figures. I think she’s got a sadistic streak in her. How long did she make you wait to get with your significant other?”
“Feels like forever. Made me fuck someone else first then masturbate and then almost got accosted at a bar by all these crazy women. In the end I ended with who I wanted and that’s all that mattered. But geez, the things I went through.” Silvano shook his head.
“Ah, she only made me get my rocks off once, then made me massage Nia. Didn’t mind the second bit.” A cheeky smile spread across the other wolf’s face. “Did she have you use toys?”
“Toys?” Silvano stroked his chin. “No. Damn. I bet Hex would have loved that.”
“Yeah.” Silvano smiled. “My little hellion cat shifter. She’s my mate.”
Bishop whistled. “Cat shifter? Wow.”
“Not as bad as one would think. Cats are very…sensual.” He took a sip of his coffee to give him time to marshal his growing arousal.
“Sensual or playful?”
Bishop snorted. “My mate is both too.”
“Thank goddess. Boring women wouldn’t suit me at all.”
“So why don’t you tell me more about you and your mate? What’s your story?” Silvano asked. “I’ll go first. I’m the alpha of my pack and have been lusting after my rival’s black cat familiar. We finally get together for a one night only deal at this bar called Last Call and she tries not to make it personal but I won’t take no for an answer. There’s a fight between wolves in my pack who have been trying to keep things in the old way and my rival and Hex come to my rescue.”
“Whoa. Talk about drama.” Bishop whistled.
“Yeah, you’ll have to read the story to get all the exact details. But needless to say I’m happy.” Silvano smiled. “So, what about you?”
“I moved to this little town after my pack kicked me out. Looong story. Anyway, I see Nia, a gorgeous witch with no powers. She’s too shy and I’ve been avoiding rejection, couldn’t even talk to her. Anyway, she comes into my store and I can’t avoid her any longer, gotta be with her so I pursue. Well, I go past hello and take it right into steamy town. But it all ends well, even got some sex toys out of the deal.” Bishop chuckled.
“Nice. I’ll have to read your story, maybe get some ideas.” Silvano’s cell phone rang. “Damn it, pack business. I can’t take an hour to myself and Hex is out of town. We should do this again sometime. Despite my reservations this was fun. I’ll have to thank our illustrious author for this get together.”
Bishop nodded. “Me too. It’s nice to bond with a fellow werewolf. Those Tartan guys are too far away to just meet up with.”
Silvano laughed. “Maybe one day.”
For more on Silvano story go to: http://www.changelingpress.com/product.php?&upt=book&ubid=1373
To check out Bishop’s story go to: http://www.liquidsilverbooks.com/books/seducingawallflower.htm
Sunday, May 23, 2010
CROSSROADS: Shadowland, Gay Fiction Series, Phaze Publishing, http://www.king-cart.com/Phaze/product=Crossroads
Frank must travel to Louisiana to solve another missing persons' case. This time, Rand insists on accompanying Frank to get a hands-on introduction to the PI business. Evil forces are at work in the bayou. Frank is pitted against a centuries' old ghost and races against time to save two innocent young men from eternal damnation. Rand gets caught in vortex of prejudice when he encounters a sinister duo bent on violence against gays. Sinister machinations converge in a maelstrom of retribution and hate. Frank must pull out all the stops to save the young men and the man who holds his heart.
More Good News Coming Monday, May 24th
Due to popularity, the first three novellas in the Crossroads series will be released in PRINT. http://www.king-cart.com/Phaze/product=Crossroads
CROSSROADS, Gay Fiction series, Phaze Publishing, http://www.king-cart.com/Phaze/product=Crossroads
Handsome ex-cop Frank McGuire is on a quest to locate his dead partner's missing son. Rand Brennan has an identity issue, exercabated since the death of his father. Hoping to find himself, Rand drops out of college, takes to the streets, and doesn't realize he's embroiled in duplicity and murder. In order to save Rand, Frank must confront the nefarious killers and...confront his long-suppressed feelings for Rand.
Elements: scenes of intense sexual activity
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CROSSROADS Revisited, Gay Fiction Series, Phaze Publishing, http://www.king-cart.com/Phaze/product=Crossroads
Frank McGuire is beginning to think the City has become a melting pot for serial killers. Another maniac is stalking the streets, only this time the deviant isn't tracking Goth girls, but gay college students. Rumors surface that put Frank's life in jeopardy, and somehow he must protect Rand from the carnage about to unfold. What he didn't count on was Rand becoming the killer's next victim.
Elements: scenes of intense sexuality
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CROSSROADS: Showdown, Gay Fiction Series, Phaze Publishing, http://www.king-cart.com/Phaze/product=Crossroads
Tough PI, Frank McGuire, attempts to help the FBI locate three abducted children from a small town in West Virginia. While channeling his inner spirt for assistance, he mistakenly calls forth a ghost. As Frank races against time to locate the missing girls, he receives help from the most unlikely of sources. To complicate matters, Rand has decided its time Frank commit to their relationship -- or run the risk of Rand being gone when he returns.
Please follow my gay fiction blog to learn more about the Crossroads series and my other Male/Male books. http://thestuffofmythandmen.blogspot.com
Have a great day! Keta
Over 100 years later, a peculiar item turns up at an outdoor flea market. It looks something like a blunt-nosed artillery shell to Cameron Waters, the young real estate broker who buys the piece out of curiosity. It looks like the legendary automaton known as Mobry’s Dick to Paul Patrillo, a graduate student who’s been researching the history of stage magic. It looks like a blessing as well as a curse when it brings the two men together.
While Cameron inches his way out of the closet and Paul struggles to free himself from a sugar daddy who’ll stop at nothing to get what he wants, the unlikely pair grow closer as they tackle the mystery of Mobry’s Dick – with startling and nearly tragic results.
Saturday, May 22, 2010
AVAILABLE: Wednesday, May 26th
Marco Giovanni adores his wife Suzy and he loves her enough to let her go, taking extreme measures to protect her. Faking his own death, Marco runs away from the checkered past he’s always tried to hide. He leaves behind a letter asking his brother to protect and love Suzy.
Alanzo Giovanni knows Suzy is the only woman for him. When his brother dies, and long before he realizes Marco’s death is a hoax, Alanzo tells Suzy they belong together. Battling inner demons, Suzy drowns in her sorrow, unsure if she can take another chance on finding happiness.
By the time Marco resurfaces, Alanzo and Suzy are weathering the storm of a rocky love affair. In the end a new love emerges, and the ménage relationship Suzy has always wanted is suddenly within her reach.
Friday, May 21, 2010
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
The latest cross genre of romance that’s all the rage is Steampunk. It’s a yummy genre and once you get a taste of it, you’ll be hooked. For those romance readers who are unfamiliar with it, I’ve noted some particulars.
You don't have to know what steampunk is at all to enjoy As Timeless As Stone, you can call it a time travel/romance and that would work just as well. For those who would like to know more about Steampunk, it’s a fantasy/sci-fi genre that is a type of alternate history based on the idea that the industrial age and the technological age happen together. It's written in the spirit of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne. If you ever watched the Wild Wild West TV show or the movie - that's steampunk. For the most part it's set during the Victorian Age, sometimes in the American west. You can have magic and paranormal elements and most of the Steampunk/Romances coming out do, but you don't have to. I find it an incredibly fun genre to write. Steampunk has also expIoded into our culture with fashion both clothes and jewelry. With gadgetry as many people love to build steampunk machines including cars. There is also steampunk music and movies. Simply Google, the word steampunk to glimpse the variety of items included in what has become for some people, a way of life.
But back to my favorite subject, books. One thing that stands out in Steampunk/Romances are fresh, settings and alternate history. Steampunk/Romances are usually set in Victorian England, especially London, some are in the Old West in the same time period, and As Timeless As Stone takes place in 1830 Paris France. As Timeless As Stone is also an example of Egyptian/Steampunk.
Steampunk/Romances usually have some type of scientist, often a good old- fashioned mad scientist. In As Timeless As Stone my hero is an unusual scientist for the genre, he’s an Egyptologist. He’s also the assistant of Jean François Champollion, the man best known for deciphering the Rosetta Stone. Working for Jean Francois Champollion, the conservator of the Egyptian collection of the Louvre, Ricard uncovers a room full of artifacts Napoleon Bonaparte brought back from his Egyptian campaign and expedition. They have been hidden away from the English all this time.
This is the part of my story where magic and science combine as it does in most Steampunk/Romances. As Ricard examines these artifacts, he uncovers an ancient Egyptian statue with the head broken off. When he sets the head back in place and uses his linguistic skills to read the incantation she holds in her stone fingers, the statue comes to life. A gorgeous flesh and blood woman appears where a stone image stood just moments before. This is my heroine Seshat, who in peril for her life turned herself to stone thousands of years before.
There is often an environment of political chaos and discourse in Steampunk/Romance and As Timeless As Stone is no exception, set in 1830 Paris under the reign of Charles the tenth with pending mayhem and unrest around the corner as the king is overthrown that same year in the July revolution.
Another big part of Steampunk/Romances are the wonderful Victorian fashions. But in As Timeless As Stone, Seshat is not impressed with layers of confining clothing. As an Egyptian priestess it is a taboo for her to wear anything made from animals, such as wool, and this comes into play when the couturier is garbing her in the latest Paris fashions.
In Steampunk/Romances there is usually a steam driven machine. For example in As Timeless As Stone there is a sprinkling of brass robots. The ultimate mechanical wonder in As Timeless As Stone is the brass time-machine watch pictured on the cover.
Now that you are familiar with some of the elements of the genre, I hope you’ll give it a try and let a Steampunk/Romance sweep you away to another place and time for a fun adventure.
I am also having a contest on this blog. To be eligible to win a gorgeous clock-gears Steampunk necklace leave a question or comment. One winner will be selected from the posts.
Buy Link: http://www.lyricalpress.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=220
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
2. They’re elegant and powerful.
3. They’re a perfect Beauty and the Beast fantasy.
4. They’re wild yet playful.
5. They have cattitude.
I love to read and write about shapeshifters and especially enjoyed writing about the Prowleryn cat shifters who were introduced in Mate Marks: Hunger. This month my new Prowleryn series begins with Eber’s Angel.
Do you enjoy cat shifters? If you do, what do you like most about them?
Prowleryns: Eber's Angel by Kate Hill
Coming soon from Changeling Press
Lost in a South American jungle, Drew, a wildlife photographer, is shocked to find a sexy yet savage creature trapped in a quicksand pit. Part man and part beast, it looks ferocious yet something in its beautiful green eyes compels her to help him.
For over five hundred years Eber reigned as leader of his Prowleryn tribe. Now he has turned over leadership to his son, Joshi. While traveling alone in the wilderness, Eber stumbles into quicksand and is rescued by a human female.
Eber has spent most of his life hating humans. Since the death of his wife, who was killed by hunters, there has been an emptiness in his soul. He never dreamed a human could stir his lust or touch his heart, but Drew does the impossible. Unable to resist the beautiful photographer, he finally comes to terms with his grief and learns to love again.
About Kate Hill
What do trips around the world, endless nights of breathtaking sex, and a muscular, 6-foot 3-inch, brown-haired, blue-eyed significant other have to do with Kate Hill? Absolutely nothing, but she can dream, can't she? In reality Kate is a single, thirty-something vegetarian New Englander who loves writing romantic fantasies.
Currently, she might not be traveling around the world, but Kate has visited Europe and Africa and those beautiful places have been wonderful inspiration for her writing. While working at various times as a clerk, assistant karate instructor, house painter and banker, Kate dreamed of being an author. In 1996 her first short story was accepted for publication and since then she has sold over ninety short stories, novellas and novels.
Kate's stories, The Chieftain's Bride and Vampire Master, have won The Romance Studio's CAPA and in 2002 her vampire novel, The Immaculate, was nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award.
When she's not working on her books, Kate enjoys reading, working out, and researching vampires and Viking history. Visit Kate online at http://www.kate-hill.com.
Monday, May 17, 2010
Sometimes I wonder about any genre flooding the ‘romance industry’ and other times it’s such a ridiculous notion that I don’t consider it for more than a passing second. Still, it deserves a mention and blogging about the topic made sense since I recently discovered a remark on one of the 3rd party sites stating that the ‘cowboy-thing’ was a bit overdone recently.
Admittedly, at one point, I thought it was a strong possibility but after a step backwards and some research, my opinion changed. History will show an extraordinary lifespan for well written books in popular sub-genres.
Think about this for a moment. True pioneers of this business sold readers on the idea of a happy ending. Authors built their stories around the idea/concept of boy meets girl, conflict leads to resolution and a happy ever after designed to lead readers to a satisfying conclusion.
I wasn’t a pioneer in the business of writing ménage or cowboys in general—I’m not that old yet. However, I was one of the first gals writing ménage western romance for Siren Publishing. It’s been a nice ride and I’m continuing to write for them in ménage western romance because I don’t feel it’s overdone.
In the sub-genres of romance, I believe everything runs its course. Do I believe ménage westerns will see a cap? Sure. And almost as soon as it ‘goes out’, it will come right back. I’ve been in the business long enough to see this again and again and again.
In today’s book business, I’m not sure any particular genre will flood the market. It may be harder and harder for new authors to break in and make a name for themselves but right now I’m not seeing proof of that so as of today, I’m not sure even that can happen. Some of us will sell more than others. Some of us will sell less than others. It’s the nature of the business and that’s not going to change regardless of how many books are published.
As for change or a flooded market: I’ve noticed that while sales aren’t ‘off, my books spend less time at the coveted #1 spot at Siren-Bookstrand. There are more books loaded to the site and a lot of talent there from a wide variety of publishers.
Cowboy Boots and Unfinished Business claimed the #1 spot at Bookstrand. It took about a week to get there and the title stayed about six or seven days at the top spot. The novel made it to #2 relatively fast but that number one position is and was harder to grab.
With Cowboy Boots and Untamed Hearts, the book went straight to #1 on release day and then stayed there for several weeks. It was a high nothing could replace and believe me, nothing stood in the way of an outright celebration that day. I’d worked hard for the spot and my editor worked just as hard to make that happen for us.
Should I be bothered that those best selling spots are harder to lock down? Heck no. I’m not alone. I’ve watched other best selling authors struggle to get to that #1 spot and no one keeps it long or no one long enough for considerable notice.
In my opinion, that’s a good thing and it certainly doesn’t imply sales are off or the market is flooded.
As far as I can tell, Cowboy Boots and Unfinished Business and Cowboy Boots and Untamed Hearts were received in similar fashion. I’m humbled and so grateful readers out there continued to buy my books.
Cowboy Boots and Untamed Hearts hit #1 in Erotica and Westerns at Amazon until the category was changed for some reason and sales leveled out but certainly didn’t plummet. If appropriately categorized at Amazon, I’m hoping for similar sales for Cowboy Boots and Unfinished Business but everything is a wait-and-see in this business.
With relatives in the entertainment industry I know how important timing and location can be. Authors need to be at the right place at the right time. Books need the appropriate marketing and that too must be decided upon by placement and timing.
My hope is that all authors can enjoy great timing at least once in their career. I raise an eyebrow about the potential for a flooded market. I think it’s all in how you perceive things, how well you’re able to adapt to the changes in the market. My opinion remains the same: Bring on the books and the more the merrier.
If I’m doing my job, readers will buy what I write. If not, I’ve had a great ride. I still have the urge to kick up my heels and buck around with a few cowboys. Regardless of the market, I hope you’ll come along for the ride.
Natalie Acres is the author of the #1 Siren-Bookstrand Best Sellers Cowboy Boots and Untamed Hearts, Cowboy Boots and Unfinished Business, Sex Games, Sex Camp, Sex Holiday, and Wanted by Outlaws. She can be found on the web at www.myspace.com/natalieacres or http://www.bookstrand.com/natalie-acres
Sunday, May 16, 2010
DO ME GOOD is my first novella based on Norse mythology. Though different from other books I’ve written in the contemporary and paranormal romance sub-genres, my stories are woven with a common thread. They are about everyday women living in our contemporary world who face, and then overcome, challenging circumstances. Penelope Farnsworth, the modern and very human heroine of DO ME GOOD, will have her hands full when the immortal story hero, Gunnar, crashes into her ordinary world.
The hero of DO ME GOOD is my first otherworldly protagonist, and I admit I’ve developed a crush on him. Gunnar is a fearless Nordic warrior cast into eternal servitude during a time when mortals answered to gods and goddesses. He becomes a celestial in the pre-Christian period before those who interacted with both gods and mortals were called angels. Gunnar is a Nordic Light Elf and so handsome he is “fairer to look upon than the sun.”
I hope you enjoy DO ME GOOD as much as I enjoyed creating this story. Here’s a sample of the book with a summary and excerpt. Thanks for reading.
DO ME GOOD by Adele Dubois
Penny throws her hot, but worthless mooch of a boyfriend out on her front lawn with his clothes, and vows never again to be a bum magnet. Exhausted by overwork and mountainous debt, Penny pleads for divine intervention.
Gunnar, a rebellious Nordic warrior cast into servitude by an angry god to learn humility, answers. While Penny sleeps, the celestial arrives to complete her household chores, but she awakens and finds him. The handsome immortal kisses her, sparking a passionate, forbidden sexual encounter.
Dark forces seeking vengeance for Gunnar’s past misdeeds mark Penny as a target. To protect his lover, Gunnar tests immortality in a death battle using a god’s magical sword. But the strength of Penny’s love might be what saves them both.
He smoothed the hair at her temple and then rubbed a thick tendril between his thumb and forefinger. “I am Gunnar.” He pronounced the name “Goo-nar”.
A coarse brand of the sun, surrounded by a circle on the back of his hand, and covering the areas between his thumb, index knuckle and wrist caught her eye. His hand looked muscular and powerful beneath her gaze.
She touched the scarred skin with the tips of her fingers while he held a length of her hair, recognizing Freyr’s sacred insignia from her textbooks. “The pain must have been excruciating.” Without thinking, she lifted the old wound to her mouth and laid four kisses against its perimeter before pressing a fifth to the emblem inside.
A low tremor vibrated across her lips as they touched the ancient symbol on the white, extended hand. The brand grew warm and then hot on her mouth, though it did not burn. Her lips tingled and her body hummed with the pleasant sensations. She ran her tongue over the thick scars to erase the heat and then licked the center with the tip of her tongue in a tiny swirl before lifting her head.
His gasp of surprise was the last thing she expected as he released her hair and leaned away.
“Have I offended you? I’m sorry.” She searched his face for clues as to what to do next. Behind his shocked expression she found desire and longing and something completely unexpected.
Penny waited for his reply without letting go of his disfigured hand. She could tell his next words didn’t come easily.
“Kindness isn’t something I’m used to finding. Perhaps you’d be less inclined toward compassion if you knew what I’d done to deserve this brand of servitude.”
She reached out and hooked her arm around his neck to bring his face closer to hers. “I am Penelope. And if you are from Alfheim, I know who and what you are. I just don’t understand why you’ve come.” How could she deserve his rare, benevolent gifts? She was just an ordinary woman, barely scraping by.
“Sometimes we get what we need, simply because we ask. That’s the beauty and power of the unexpected.” His warm breath grazed her cheek in shallow rushes, lifting goose bumps across her skin. His wide, firm mouth smelled of sweet ground parsley and fresh-picked mint.
Their gazes locked and held, assessing, appraising.
Gunnar’s eyes were like pools of deep blue water speckled with light that pulled her in and down. Down. Her breathing slowed as the sound of her heartbeat intensified in her ears and the inside of her mouth moistened. She licked her lips and became intensely aware of every nerve ending shimmering along her body. Her muscles tensed as if waiting for something unexpected to happen.
As if meeting a Nordic Light Elf in the flesh wasn’t amazing enough.
Just when she wondered how his mouth would taste, he brought his lips to hers and kissed her. An explosion of kinetic energy shot vibrations through her body that prickled every fiber and muscle, held her taut and then released, leaving her breathless.
Buy Link: http://www.jasminejade.com/ps-8301-50-do-me-good.aspx
Saturday, May 15, 2010
DOMS OF DARK HAVEN ANTHOLOGY
Met Her Match by Sierra Cartwright
Simon Says by Cherise Sinclair
Educating Evangeline by Belinda McBride
Coming May 18 to Loose Id LLC
Three women, three Doms. One extraordinary night. Welcome to Dark Haven, and may all of your darkest wishes come true.
Evangeline Jones was looking for safety when she ducked into the doorway of Dark Haven. What she found was a alpha wolf named Harte Sommers. In her whole life, Eva had never considered submitting to another, but in just hours, Harte would teach her everything she needed to know about survival, pack life, and the power of surrender.
EXCERPT: Educating Evangeline
GENRE: Shapeshifter BDSM, M/F
The sign was small and subtle just over the door of an inconspicuous building. After blocks of running, Eva had merged into a large group of men and women who wore Victorian attire like hers. It didn’t look like a private party, so she followed them inside the club, praying she’d find her haven from the hunters who were just blocks away.
The group moved quickly inside, clearly accustomed to the place.
“Do you have a membership?”
She blinked, looking down at the cute…and scantily dressed receptionist. Eva cleared her throat. “Uh…no…” The girl’s breasts were clearly visible through the Goth-inspired Victorian outfit that she was barely wearing. The girl smiled, and a diamond winked like a brilliant beauty mark over the side of her upper lip.
“That’s okay. Is this your first time at Dark Haven?”
Eva nodded, brushing a loose strand of hair from her face with a gloved hand.
“No problem, then. Membership is five dollars, plus tonight’s entry fee. Just fill out the paperwork. By the way, my name’s Destiny.”
Somehow she doubted that was really the receptionist’s name, but heck, her name wasn’t her own either. She paid and then scribbled a false name and address on the form, grateful that they weren’t checking IDs.
Eva looked around the dark little reception area. The place was clearly a club, most likely a dance club. Music reverberated through the walls. She heard muffled laughter, and the occasional woman’s squeal punctuated the air. A bulletin board on the wall held flyers for alternate-lifestyle events in the area. Eva’s stomach sank. Was she in a sex club? She looked back at Destiny.
“Restrooms and lockers are to the right. If you have any questions, look for a staff member; the DMs have bandannas on their left arms.”
Eva decided to skip the ladies’ room. There was no doubt that the people following her would venture into the club soon enough. She didn’t need to get cornered in a toilet. Hesitantly she stepped through the curtains and into the main room of the club.
Immediately she was assailed by the pungent mix of sweat, alcohol, perfume, and sex.
Lots of sex. Adrenaline and the bite of fear saturated the air.
Her skin prickled; phantom hackles rose in panic. She blinked, trying to focus on the room and the myriad of possible dangers within. A woman’s scream carried faintly from downstairs, and Eva’s wolf growled. Blindly she turned to run, to escape. She found herself surrounded by people moving into the club and nearly staggered to the floor. A hand steadied her elbow; another patted her rump. She jumped away, barely hearing their laughter.
Run! The wolf whirled and spun in panic.
Just yards away, a woman was lying prone over a man’s lap. Her skirts and petticoats were pulled up, leaving her bottom bare. With a crack, he slapped her ass bare handed. A strangled cry left Eva’s throat. Against another wall, a naked man was suspended from chains that dangled from the ceiling. A collar circled his throat, and a complicated ring held his penis upright.
Bodies in ruffles and frills and frock coats milled around tables. Some danced, and some leaned together in intimate conversation. The civilized behavior was a paper-thin veneer over the raw lust that drenched the atmosphere.
Too much. The sensory overload was too much. She tried to make a run for the door and slammed into a broad expanse of velvet and silk and man and the most wonderful fragrance in the world. He was sandalwood and vanilla and something she couldn’t define.
Eva screamed, and her scream was echoed by that of the woman who was being spanked.
She screamed again.
Hands gripped her upper arms, and she began to struggle; her feet were caught up in the long, trailing skirts of her dress. A booted toe connected with a shin.
“Damn! Take it easy, sweetheart!”
“Sorry! Stop! I need to go!” She twisted in his grip.
Strong hands lifted her clear off the floor. “Sweetie, look up at me. Now!”
His voice was deep and compelling, and it cut through her panic. She shook her head, doing her best to bring herself back under control. For a moment -- just a moment -- she rested her forehead on his chest, inhaling deeply. The yummy scent of the man helped distract her from the surrounding chaos. Eva’s entire body reacted to that fragrance. To her great humiliation, she was growing aroused and wet. She blinked hard and looked up into his face. His beautiful face.
“Now that I have your attention, can I help you?” His nostrils flared. He leaned a bit closer, his face coming dangerously close to her throat. She whined in panic. And then she bared her throat in surrender.
What the fuck did she do that for?
“You’re scared witless. Follow me.” He lowered her to the ground and turned away, clearly expecting to be obeyed.
On trembling legs, Eva followed the stranger until they reached a little room that opened into one of the walls. As soon as the door closed, the music muted, and the scents faded to a tolerable level. She panted, fighting down the panic that still played at the edges of her consciousness. Gazing around, she gulped. The room was the exact duplicate of a police interrogation room.
She knew; she’d seen the inside of those a time or two.
“This is a bondage club.” He looked serious, but she could see he was stifling a smile. It was there in a dimple that flashed in his cheek.
“Thank you. I think I just figured that out,” she said wryly. Good God. Of all the doors she could have ducked into, she’d chosen a bondage club’s.
Friday, May 14, 2010
As an author of Seductive Suspense, I’ll admit that my favorite time of year is Autumn, with its signature holiday of Halloween. Ghosts, goblins, black cats, witches, and magick. Yet, Spring is a time of magic as well. Daffodils pushing up from the ground, baby animals being born -- watching the world be reborn is a miracle in and of itself.
Spring for me is also a time of re-evaluation. Have I kept my New Year’s Resolutions (um, not so well), and am I on track to make my writing goals (another, um, no)? I follow a lot of other author’s blogs and often feel as if I am the tortoise among them. While they are flipping out thousands of words a week, I’ve managed to type out, um, none for weeks on end. Since the New Year, it was as if one or the other of my children, my husband, or myself has been sick. Then, just when we all started to feel better, along came Spring Break. Loud groan.
With all of the blustery weather, rain, and cloudy skies of Spring, it’s easy to forget that the heat of the summer sun is just around the corner. It’s the same with my writing. I often lose sight that being an author is more like running a marathon than a sprint. It would be so easy to simply write the book and sit back and wait for accolades, that Gold medal of a best seller. However, every year, there are more and more published books competing for a reader’s attention. It’s no longer viable to write just one book and become a household name. I’m in this for the long haul, the marathon, and that means that I follow the one rule for writers: WRITE!
So, as we turn the creep further into May, I’m hoping to make like a tortoise and write the next book, even if it’s just one word at a time.
Crisscross – Available now from Write Words, Inc.
“Ready?” Jared said, trying to keep his voice light.
The corners of Lia’s lips turned up in a slow, seductive smile and her eyebrows quirked, giving her the amused expression of a siren targeting her prey. “Oh, yeah.”
Her slow seductive response left nothing to the imagination. After she’d slid into her seat, Jared shut the door and then dashed around to the driver’s seat. As he drove, he fought back the erotic visions that threatened to distract him. It was only a few blocks to the hotel, and he needed to get there without driving up the curb or having a head-on collision with a bus.
Once the car was parked and the engine turned off, Jared took a deep breath. Lia opened her door and slid out. As her door closed behind her, he sat behind the wheel assailed by self doubt. What if she had changed her mind during the ride? What if…
A blast of cold air roused him from his reverie.
“You coming?” Lia asked.
Jared swung out of the car. “Not yet, but I plan to.”
She giggled in reply.
Like a sedate, married couple, they walked through the lobby. It seemed to take an eternity for the elevator car to arrive. The doors slid open and they stepped inside the small, functional box that would carry them up three floors to ecstasy.
“Do you remember when…?” Jared began.
“We had sex in the elevator of the Natural History building.” Lia finished.
“And how we nearly got caught by the Dean of students.”
“Oh, yeah. Those were the days.”
Time seemed to slow to a crawl, Jared watched the numbers ascend, sure they were never going to reach their destination. When the floor indicator sounded, he felt as if he took his first full breath since Lia had asked him back to her hotel.
It wasn’t until they were inside her room, until her lips were pressed against his, until her hands were busy tearing at his clothes, that he finally began to believe this was really happening.
After seven years of wanting and wondering, she was back. There were still more questions than there were answers, but part of him no longer cared. She was here, they were together, that’s what mattered.
The next few minutes were a blur. He remembered touching her face, caressing her cheek while his mouth devoured hers. He also remembered the look in her chocolate brown eyes that turned from soft need to a tempest of desire when he stroked his hand down to cup her breast.
Clothes flew in all directions, and then, finally, they were lying together on the bed, and he realized his fantasies had been nothing but a teasing foreplay for this very moment.
Ericka Scott is a multi-published, bestselling author of seductive suspense. She's written stories for as long as she can remember and reads anything under the sun (including the back of cereal boxes in a pinch). She got hooked on romantic suspense in her college days, when reading anything but a textbook was a guilty pleasure. Now, when she’s not chauffeuring children around, wishing she had more than 24 hours in a day, or lurking at the library, she’s spinning her own web of fantasy and penning tales of seduction and suspense. She currently lives in Southern California with her husband and three children.
Ericka loves friends, so come friend her at http://myspace.com/erickascott
She's also on Facebook at http://facebook.com/ericka.scott and Twitter @ErickaScott
You can find out more about her books at her newly re-designed website: www.erickascott.com
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
I salute you. You sit for long hours in front of the computer as you labor over our stories. Without you none of us would be here. Mostly, you do us proud but I'd like you to consider the following:
1. Please, please don't make me go down to the basement when there is a killer on the loose. Credit me with a little common sense and help me do something intelligent. I don't want readers to snigger at me and call me Too Stupid To Live. I deserve more than that, don't you think?
2. I know popular opinion says heroines are slender and pretty, but how about making me stand out from the crowd? Make me sexy--sure, I like sexy as much as the next girl, but I can be sexy and an average size. Give me a few curves. Don't you know I enjoy food? Oh, and if you give me curves, don't go on and on about my size. I'm happy, really I am.
3. Please don't take a stereotype and foist it on me. I'm not a hooker with a big heart. I'm not an ice princess. I'm not a geeky librarian. Give me individuality.
4. I like alpha men--really, I do, but at least give me a spine so I can stand up to them. No wimps should apply here.
5. I'm not perfect. I know that, but do you know it too? Give me some flaws and balance them with some of the good stuff. Make me human because readers will like me better that way.
6. Give me a snarky voice. I'm cool with that, but don't make me snark all the way through the book. Readers won't like me if I do that. They might call me a bitch, you know, and wonder what the hero sees in me.
7. Likewise, if my hero is going to be a bastard, let him fall off his high horse at some stage. Make him see the error of his ways or at least let me use my knee in his private parts. It might hurt him, but it would make me feel better after all the verbal abuse.
8. And finally, if you're gonna make me have back door sex, please, please, please give me some lube.
What would your heroine write in a letter? Readers, what do you think the heroine should write?
Shelley Munro lives in New Zealand and writes contemporary and paranormal romance for Samhain Publishing and Ellora’s Cave. When she’s not writing she loves to travel and frequently drags her husband off to far-flung parts of the world. Not that he argues much. Cooking is fun (since she enjoys eating) and she likes to take photographs of everyone and everything. Her latest release is THE BOTTOM LINE, an erotic contemporary romance, which is available from Samhain Publishing. You can visit Shelley at http://www.shelleymunro.com
It's a gorgeous day today! The sun is out and it's supposed to be warm. I've been scheduling myself some outside time lately, because if I don't - then I won't leave the office. There really is something to taking the time to smell the flowers - or water the flowers.
Hubby and I planted our first garden last week, and doubled our herb garden. The basil seems to be tempermental, so we might have to move it elsewhere...not sure the issue but everything else is flourishing just fine. I'm looking forward to growing our own tomatoes. It seems whenever I need tomatoes they look terrible in the stores, or there aren't any. We love to cook with fresh herbs and vegetables, and of course there's the pride that comes with growing your own food.
You would think the good weather would beckon me outside, but once I get started writing, I have a hard time pushing myself away from the computer. Now I have a couple of new reasons to get outside. I asked for a bird feeder or a hummingbird feeder for Mother's Day - and my hubby and son bought me both! Yesterday we had these beautiful yellow finches that looked like tiny sunbursts all huddled around the feeder. I swear I watched for hours, and they make such pretty little sounds.
Sometimes it's just the simple things.
We also have a beautiful hummingbird that comes around - it likes one of my flowers - so I've been wanting to get a feeder out for it. It's a male, and I would never have noticed him if it weren't for the cricket-like whistle he makes. Almost like he's announcing himself. He's gorgeous with a ruby red neck. The hummingbird feeder hangs right outside my office - so I find myself glancing over hoping to catch sight of him.
I do enjoy little things. A nice cup of peppermint tea, a good book, pretty flowers, fresh herbs and veggies from our own little garden, good friends, my family, and the little visitors who bring their own gifts by stopping by.
The simple things are what I treasure most.
What are some of your favorite things?
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
- Eliza Gayle: Book Two of the Black Cougar novels! Kane explores the further adventures of three shape-shifting brothers.
The Honey Eater - Laura Gill: Elegant yet steamy historical romance at its best! A widow copes with her devastating loss and tries to resist the urge to live again with another.
Willed to Love - Michelle Houston: Two former lovers are unprepared for the reading of a will. Can they live up to the terms?
Sexual Healing: Too Shy - Book Two of D. Musgrave's provocative series on sexual surrogacy.
Binary Stars. Vol. 3: Willing / Able - Get a double shot of sizzling manlove from the dynamic duo of Jude Mason and Jenna Byrnes!
Picture Perfect - Jack Greene: When a hard working car salesman, stuck on his dreams of being a photographer, meets a handsome bartender, he finds new inspiration to chase his desires.
Embrace the Moment - Mahalia Levey: Sexy military romance from a new Phaze author!
Binary Stars, Vol. 4: Performance Review / Spank: Spank us twice! Check out these two tales of discipline by D. Musgrave and Nona Wesley.
Don't forget to join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for updates!
Saturday, May 8, 2010
The short answer is YES!
Most people are genuinely good and occassionally do something "out of character" or bad. That doesn't make them a bad person, I think it makes them human. Now, as for the kinky bit, well, when I use the word "kinky" I mean it in a sexual not-vanilla sense, and how a person enjoys their sex doesn't define them as being good or bad either. As far as I'm concerned, people never stop learning and the Good, Bad and Kinky duet is grounded in the idea that it's never wrong to make a change in our lives or try something new to us. Nothing about living is set in stone and that means everything is possible, like the Devil retiring or an angel giving up the good life in Heaven.
In Call Me Lucifer, deep down in his soul, Lucifer - yes, the Devil - is a good person with a touch of bad to keep his lady love on her toes. And in the newly released My Angel, Ann Miller may be a guardian angel, but when offered a chance to live the life she never had, she goes for it and lets her naughty inclinations free!
Call Me Lucifer by Tilly Greene
Paranormal Erotic Romance/Bondage and D/s
Available through Whiskey Creek Press Torrid and Amazon
He is much more than the horrific job title and now he needs to prove it to her!
Lucifer, the Prince of Darkness, works hard dishing out punishments and asks for little in return, until now. He's been waiting an eternity for a woman who would bring out his gentle side, his need to love and be loved in return. He’d started to wonder if she even existed but at last he’s found her, in a courtroom arguing for a tougher sentence.
After his first introduction to Nia Adams, a sexy petite firebrand, he spends all his time on the surface at her side. They have a serious relationship and he’s sure the emotion bouncing between them is love. Then she lies to him about how she feels.
While difficult to hear, the lie opens a door. It gives him the only chance he’ll ever have to show her who the man behind the horrific job title really is. And he takes it with both hands.
My Angel by Tilly Greene
Paranormal Erotic Romance/Bondage
Available through Whiskey Creek Press Torrid and Amazon
Not everything worth having is easy to obtain.
Ann Miller was murdered as a toddler and ended up in Heaven without ever really living. She’s never questioned what she missed experiencing, not until she earns her Guardian Angel wings. With them fluttering happily around her, she discovers what being in love truly feels like and wants to embrace it fully.
As a drummer for the band of the decade, Tom Baker leads a decadent life that takes a toll on him, and he works hard to take back control of his life. Ann is there to watch over him and the more time she spends with him, the more she wants. Then her luck changes.
Ann is given the chance to live again with the man she loves, but there are conditions. She must wait for him to proclaim his heart first...and there’s a time limit.
There you go, hints a fun duet where everyone is good, bad and kinky.
WARNING! Red hot romances ahead!
Friday, May 7, 2010
I arrived on Tuesday night and met up with several friends in the hotel lobby. We had a quick dinner while we reconnected. We finished dinner just in time for the Ellora's Cave Meet and Greet mixer. I got to meet up with my Cougar Challenge anthology buddies--Samantha Kane, Mari Freeman, Desiree Holt, Dalton Diaz, Lexxie Couper, Lynne Connolly, and Samantha Cayto. Jayne Rylon, a Columbus resident, was kind enough to put me up at her house for the week.
The second day passed in a blur as we attended workshops. That night was Ellora's Cave's Paint the Town Red party and it was a blast. All the EC authors were introduced and escorted across the stage by a hot caveman. My caveman was very sweet. I mentioned how uncomfortable I was (I hate being in front of crowds). He laughed and said, "You're uncomfortable? At least you have your clothes on!" The men were in tight pants and shirtless with suspenders! We drank, we danced, we laughed, we talked and we got back to Jayne's house way after midnight.
Thursday, there were more workshops and I attended the Ellora's Cave luncheon and played a little Bad Boy Bingo. I met up with my EC editor and we hit the bar before the Fairy Ball, where we drank, we danced, we laughed, we talked and we got back to Jayne's house way after midnight. LOL
On Friday, I attended a menage workshop (where else but at a romance conference could you say that?!). I also participated in my very first ebook expo/book signing. I was a nervous wreck, but it was fun. Sat next to Dee Carney, who is an absolute riot and a master at selling her books! Learned a lot from watching that lady in action! That night was the Vampire Ball. We drank, we danced, we laughed, we talked and we got back to Jayne's house way after midnight. Hee hee.
Saturday was the giant print Book Fair. Over 300 authors sat at tables in a huge ballroom and the line to get in seemed miles long! Several big names in attendance included JR Ward, Charlaine Harris and Richelle Mead. I sat with Tori Carringon (who is actually a very nice, married couple--Tony and Lori) on my right and SL Carpenter and Sahara Kelly on my left.
After the fair, we headed to the Samhain wine and cheese mixer. Talk about an exciting hour--my editor offered me a contract for my latest submission for the Black & White Collection, Happy Hour, and I was drinking wine in a hotel suite with Lora Leigh, Lorelei James, Lauren Dane and Anne Rainey as well as many other talented Samhain writers. Kept fighting the urge to pinch myself!
Now I'm back home, but I have to say the conference was one of the best experiences of my life and if I ever have the opportunity to return again, I definitely will!
Monday, May 3, 2010
It's easy to start believing that you're too old for this and that. Too old to act like a kid or too old to place yourself in a position where you might look foolish. You might think you're too old to actualize a long-held dream, or even believe that time has run out.
Well, think again. It's absolutely never too late! You can start a new career or seize your lifelong romantic dream, just look at romance author, Jean MacLeod, who celebrated her 101 birthday on January 20. Once you realize how she's not let age slow her down or stop her, you may just change your mind.
The remarkable Mrs. MacLeod hasn't let age stop her from doing the thing she loves - writing romance books for Mills and Boon (Harlequin). It's reported that she is currently writing romance novel #130.
This is one romance author who literally takes the cake when it comes to not letting age get in the way of living or in her case, writing about romance.