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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Mindi Ferrari Guest Blogger


Let me start by saying that I’m very happy to be doing this guest blog. Sarah you are amazing! Now let’s see a little bit about me. I have been a writer all my life but didn’t actually start trying to get published until around 5 years ago.  Like most writers I am not normal, nor have  I ever been. I am as crazy as they come. I have a brain that turns like a hamster wheels, and body that somehow has adopted some form of ADHD And my attention is like a dog always on to something else, new, and fun. Since I was 10 years old I dreamed of writing horror novels. That dream quickly ended with the realization that boys and girls were supposed to not only get along with one another, but they were so supposed to fall in love and live happily ever after. So then came Mindi the woman who had an imagination for writing the things us women dream about, with of course having little or no cap on my word. I have a young adult novel called “The first Taste” , and two adult paranormal romance novels- “Midnight Assassins” due May 30, 2011 and “Wicked Games”  due September 19, 2011. One contemporary romance called “Dark Days” no release date for this one yet and hope for hundreds more in the future.

When I first started writing Midnight Assassins, I knew that I wanted to bring the old-fashioned vampire to life. I didn’t want to stray too far from the truth- well the stories and movies we’ve all seen, but yet I wanted to give my vampires a feel that only I could explicate.  Our Vampire folklore needs to have a hero who is capable of murder and destruction, incredibly breathtaking, but yet has a weakness for that one woman that drives him insane with lust and love. So my research went as far as to finding out what most women would want in a vampire leader. I did a lot of movie watching and even went back to watching Nosferatu from 1922, but still I kept getting this crossed with the contemporary vampire. So then I decided why not put the two together. I mean if I were come across a vampire who spoke from the present but had been around for a few centuries, and had the good looks and charm to match I would go nuts. Us woman dream of this exact man that is drop dead sexy and has a personality to die for, but yet his only weakness is that one woman he notices  in crowd of a million. Her eyes drawing his very essence out of his body.
That’s where my story came to play: Here’s my short blurb about Midnight Assassin.
 Annie was definitely not ready for the life that was about to be handed to her. She was dealing with a job she liked, but a boss she hated. She had no family and only one true friend. One horrible day took her life by surprise. Beaten and almost dead she finds her life in the arms of a handsome, over bearing vampire and wants nothing more than to stay put there forever, but can't seem to let go of her past.
Nicholie was definitely on a mission in his life; to kill the hunters that killed his sister Emma, and maintaining his life as an assassin which was more than time consuming. Closing in on a lead, he ends up finding Annie instead, and falls head over heels with this breathtaking human that he wants to make his own, testing his very belief system as a vampire.
For me this novel started out my quest for finding all those sexy brooding men out there that played around in my head. Some sat playing chess with no shirt and had ropes of muscle just begging to be licked. Some were sitting there on a bench elbows resting on their knees, thinking about their next kill and dreaming about the woman they seen the day before. Or the hero that pulls up on his motorcycle, the mysterious man that makes everyone’s head turn from his gorgeous good looks and sexy leather chaps. The scenarios go on and on, each man waiting to be plucked from my head and placed in the novel that tells their story. So after all of this my novel Midnight Assassin only seems fitting to read and hold tight next to your chest at night case you just can’t get enough of the story. Midnight Assassins comes out on May 30th, 2011 from Secret Cravings Publishing . And after all of this please feel free to look me up on Facebook or email me on my website www.mindiferrari.com. Can’t wait to hear from you!


Monday, May 30, 2011

Lauren Fraser

Now I don't know about you, but I love reading a great ménage story.  There's just something about them that really appeals to me. Maybe it's the whole taboo around being with more than one person at once, I don't know. Or it could be the fantasy about having two other people focused completely on one person and their pleasure that's just so hawt. Whatever it is, the whole thing just works for me. Guess that's why I like to write them. LOL

I have to admit though I am one of those readers who loves a good love story. I like to have some romance with my sex *grin* So for me there's nothing better than the emotional angst and upheaval in making an unconventional relationship work. And come on, when you add extra bodies there's going to be extra emotions involved and I just love that stuff.
I think a well written story pulls the reader in and makes you care about the characters regardless of gender and because of that I can read any combination in a story and enjoy it. But when it came to writing both of the ménage books I've written  I had to go with what works best for me, and I find the idea of two men and one woman pretty hot, I’m not going to lie.
Now I've written one M/F/M and one M/M/F ménage, and I really enjoy both. So I'm curious, as a reader what combination do you prefer? M/M/F, M/F/M, F/M/F, F/F/M? Do you like it when both men (women) are focused completely on the woman (man) but not each other, or do you enjoy seeing all three people touching each other and have that love and attraction cross boundaries?
It seems that whether you read these stories or not everyone has an opinion on what would make a good ménage story, and I would love to know what your works for you.
I’m running a contest this month over on my website so be sure to swing on by and check out the contest page over there for a chance to win http://www.laurenfraser.com

Dani’s Duo
BLURB
Attorney Danika James is ready to celebrate her greatest win to date, but not with a bunch of stodgy lawyers and martinis. Beneath Danika’s buttoned-up exterior lives a woman with wild-side desires she has yet to fully discover.

Tattoo artist Paddy O’Shea walks on society’s razor edge. When he learns his best friend, Cooper Hanes, has more than a casual interest in Danika, Paddy suggests a weekend celebration of exploration none of them will ever forget.

For the next forty-eight hours the men satisfy fantasies Dani didn’t even know she had. But every party has to end. Doesn’t it? Or can the courtroom diva turn Dani’s Duo into something as permanent as one of Paddy’s tattoos?

EXCERPT
She wrapped her arms around his neck. “Good to know. So then how come if you’re interested you keep asking me about Cooper?”
“Just trying to figure out who all the players are.”
“What’s that mean?”
“I’m just curious if you are interested in both of us or just me.”
“And if I said I was interested in both of you?” she asked, allowing her body to brush against his as they swayed to the music.
“That works too.”
“So have you two both dated the same woman before?”
“Dated? No. But we’ve uh, well, both enjoyed the company of the same woman.”
“You mean like sex?”
Paddy laughed. “Yeah, I mean like sex.”
Her mouth dropped open. “Wow. I don’t even know what to say about that.”
“What do you mean? The idea doesn’t appeal to you just a little bit?” He leaned in closer. His hot breath caressed her ear. “You don’t think the idea of two guys completely focused on you, touching you, caressing you, pleasuring you is appealing?”
An arrow of raw lust shot straight through her, drenching her panties in its wake. “Uh well…um…” she stammered.
He pulled her tighter against him and she could feel his erection against her stomach. Fuck yeah, it was appealing.
“Come on, where’s that girl who I pierced tonight? The one who’s a little bit wild and daring. The one who gets turned-on by the excitement of doing something that goes against convention.”
She shivered beneath his breath. How the hell could someone she just met see inside her head so clearly? “She’s thinking about her day job.”
“What the hell does that have to do with anything?”
“Come on, Paddy. I’ll see Coop at work, it’ll be weird.”
Paddy snorted. “Right, ’cause you guys are so tight right now. Besides, Coop’s a big boy, he’s not some locker room jock who’s going to blab all over the place about what you did. He’s certainly man enough not to need to kiss and tell.”
She glanced around. Cooper and Tina were no longer dancing. Cooper sat at the table alone, drinking his beer. His hungry gaze followed them across the dance floor. Oh my. “Are you sure he’d even be into something like this?”
“He’s alive, right?”
Dani laughed. “Yes, he’s alive.”
“Then yeah, I’m sure he’ll want to, but hell, don’t take my word for it. Ask him yourself.”
She eyed Cooper again. Would he be into it? And if he was, could she do this? Her mind told her she was an idiot to even consider it but her body was screaming at her to be wild and daring. Paddy was right. Her lawyer persona hid a woman who craved excitement and adrenaline rushes. She’d never managed to find a man who could handle what she wanted sexually. But she had no doubts Paddy was up for the challenge and Cooper, he called to her on a completely different level.
“Let us help you celebrate your victory in a way you’ll never forget.”
She gulped. Shit, was she really considering this? One look at Paddy’s face and she was done. Yep, she was definitely considering this. She nodded. “Okay, let’s see if Coop wants to celebrate.”
Buy Link http://www.jasminejade.com/p-9288-danis-duo.aspx

Author Bio
Lauren Fraser resides in British Columbia, Canada, with her husband and two children. When she’s not busy writing, Lauren loves to spend time with her family outside—camping, hiking and kayaking.
Lauren writes about love and relationships in many different forms, but in the end she’s a sucker for a happy ending. She is multi-published and loves to hear from her readers. For the latest updates and contests visit her website.
Website: http://www.laurenfraser.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/lauren_fraser
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Lauren.Fraser.Author

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Lynde Lakes

HI, BLOG-READERS, DELIGHTED YOU DROPPED BY.  Many thanks to Sarah Mc Neal for inviting me to share with you.  I’m Lynde Lakes I and write mostly romantic intrigues, or romantic paranormal intrigues.  But refusing to limit myself, I try to push the boundaries with each new novel.  I strive for plots where the heroine is strong and the heroes are challenged to match and exceed that strength.  After all, they must combine forces to take down clever and devious villains. A reader might think he or she has my plot all figured out, then I put a twist on the twist.

One of my favorite quotations is Amelia Earhart’s: “When a great adventure is offered, don’t refuse it.” I also like William Shakespeare’s: “Assume a virtue, if you have it not.” I like the positive march full-steam-ahead tone to them. J  And I attempt to achieve that in all my novels including, DEADLY INFLUENCE.  My goal is to make the “read” a roller coaster ride from page one to the end. J   If you like hot military guys, my copyrighted and published novel DEADLY INFLUENCE might interest you.  www.amirapress.com





                               DEADLY INFLUENCE
                                       Lynde Lakes
                         Hot, Hard-bodied & Hounded,
                     This Officer and a Gentleman type
                       Rushes into the most poignant
                        & deadliest skirmish of his life,
                                  A world of intrigue
                             & undeniable fiery passion
                                           
                Sparks fly when Air Force Intelligence
                       Lieutenant Jay Corning, is tackled by
                          Lisa Dixson, the female version of
                                    “The Bodyguard.”
                        As they spar, the escalating danger
                              closes in from the dark
                    corners of the small community, stirring fears
                                    & steamy emotions.

                         See excepts below and at: amirapress.com
                                       www.lyndelakes.com

E-Book ISBN 978-1-936-279-05-0
Print Book ISBN 978-1-936-279-06-7


Blurb DEADLY INFLUENCE

According to Meta, this tall dark and handsome lieutenant was solid, decent, faithful, and did the Corning name proud.   Lisa could verify only that he was sexy, exciting and set her heart into double time every time she looked at him.  And, his touch, oh God his touch set every inch of her on fire. Unfortunately, her job as bodyguard and his military career forbid any physical or emotional connection between them.  It didn’t help that he was looking at her with those bedroom eyes, or that only moments ago he’d had his burning hands all over her silky pajamas.

Excerpt:

He rolled, taking her with him, knocking the gun from her hand into the darkness of the room.  She felt the familiar rush of adrenaline.  She knew several effective ways of disabling a man, even one as powerful as this one.  She kneed him in the groin.  He doubled over and groaned in pain.  She broke free and rolled away.
Lisa sprang to her feet and darted into the darkened hallway.  She had to draw him away from Meta.  Then high-tail it to her own bedroom and retrieve her backup gun.  He was right behind her.  Her heart pounded.  He grabbed her arm and spun her around.  She kicked hard.  He dodged and blocked it.  She kicked again.  However, for every karate kick, he had an equally effective block.  The man knew his business.
Lisa feigned a lunge.  He grabbed her around the waist and pulled her down to the floor. Inhaling his feral male scent, she struggled and thrashed around, but it was impossible to break free.  He was too strong.
He yanked her to her feet with one arm and switched on the stairway lights.  Stark brightness flooded over them.  She looked up into raging, dark brown eyes and felt their full force.  They were the eyes of a man capable of doing whatever he needed to do to take her down.  She kicked.  He blocked.  Lisa had the uneasy feeling that he knew her every move before she made it.
His steel-like fingers dug into her wrist.  She tried again to jerk free.  “Who the hell are you?” she demanded.  With a raking look, he took in her silk pajamas and torn bed jacket.  “Come back to finish the job?” she said with calmness that surprised her.
“What the hell are you talking about?”  His eyes narrowed.  The brute was at least a head taller than she was, and everything about him, his size, his deadly voice, and the look in his eyes told her he was dangerous.  She had to keep him away from Meta.
With all the calm she could muster, she gave him a once over.  Curly, black hair, strong, defined features.  Dark and dangerous was her quick assessment.  Then upon closer look she recognized him—those powerful shoulders, that firm jaw, the fuller lower lip, that hint of a cleft chin, and that deep voice.  Oh my God, he was the man in the van!
He searched her face with such intensity that she wanted to look away.  But didn’t.  His eyes were troubled, confused.  This was her chance.  She went limp for a moment and when he relaxed his grip, she broke free.  He grabbed for her and they went down, scuffling.  In spite of good sense, Lisa couldn’t believe that this intruder with the hot, hard body was turning her on…God help her…..  
Hey, friends, it was fun to share at this blog-party. I hope to hear from you soon on Facebook or drop by my website.  Aloha, and may all of your dreams come true.  Lynde Lakes

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Priceless Family Moments

With summer approaching my thoughts have turned to my family. They visit each year and we play tourist around the city. We take in the sites. With them it is fun seeing things that I see often in a new light. I love when my family comes visiting. We tend to laugh, talk and just have fun. There are some moments in each visit I know I will always remember.

The laughter when I got my brother-in-law with a whopper of a zinger. He has a sharp wit and is great with zingers. My sister, nephew and I dancing around the living room while watching So You Think You Can Dance. We dance grooving to the tune and dances. Laughing as we chatted about other moments we had in the pass. Like when my brother-in-law screamed on the roller coaster and the picture of that scream. My cousin who loves to argue good naturedly with me.

There are so many times I spend with my family. I appreciate all of them. All these moments were priceless family moments. With summer coming I plan to make some more.



****



Taige Crenshaw is a multi-published author with books available at Ellora's Cave Publishing, Liquid Silver Books, Loose Id, Total-E-Bound and Summerhouse Publishing. Taige has been enthralled with the written word from time she picked up her first book. It wasn’t long before she started to make up her own tales of romance. With novels set in today, in alternate dimensions, or in the future she writes with adventure, fun sassy heroine’s, and sexy hero’s. Always hard at work creating new and exciting places Taige can be found curled up with a hot novel with exciting characters when she is not creating her own. Join her in the fun, frolic, interesting people and far reaches of the world in her novels. You can find out more about Taige at her website: http://www.taigecrenshaw.com or blog: http://www.taigecrenshaw.com/blog.Check out free reads at http://www.satinnotes.com/.

Power of Instinct - A woman does whatever is necessary to protect the man who is hers but once he finds out he goes with his instincts and makes her his.

Buy here at Total-E-Bound.

Friday, May 27, 2011

20 Questions & A Contest with Author Shannon Leigh

Shannon will be giving away a copy of her book, EROTIKOS, to a commentor.  Be sure to give your email addy to enter the contest.
Now here is Shannon Leigh, multipublished author.

1. Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.


http://shannonleigh.org/

MORE THAN PROPHECY
PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN: 1-59279-324-X (Electronic)
ISBN: 1-59279-807-1 (Paperback)
GENRES: Romance/ Paranormal/Time-Travel Romance/Interracial
PURCHASE URL: http://www.amberquill.com/MoreThanProphecy.html

Prophesied to bear a child to end the warring between the Andreas and Ramekah clans of planet Zandar, Cheyenne is whisked away from Earth by a magical zephyr and deposited in a valley between the grassy knolls of the Rhian Mountains and the dreaded Goetic forest. It’s there that Lord Darian Andreas, ruler of the mighty Andreas Clan and master of the powerful Andreas Territory, finds her. Although all seek to sire her child, Darian has already claimed her for his own. And he intends to win.


STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN
PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN: 1-59279-414-9 (Electronic)
GENRES: Paranormal/Erotica/Mystical Beings
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/StairwayHeaven.html

When Rhea, a biologist for Providian Pharmaceuticals, travels to the Amazon Forest in search of a cure for cancer and discovers a secret Stairway To Heaven along with the Guardian who protects it, can she deny her scientific education and allow him to fulfill the biggest desires of her heart?


CHINATOWN BUFFET

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN: 1-59279-421-1 (Electronic)
GENRE: Contemporary / Erotica / Interracial / Multicultural
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/ChinatownBuffet.html

When Mei Ling orders a late night meal from the Chinatown Buffet, the last thing she expects is for her delivery boy to be a Texas native sporting a black Stetson, levis that cling to all the right places, and seafoam eyes. Seems her food isn’t the only package he’s prepared to deliver.

Also available in audio format:

PUBLISHER: Audio Minx
PURCHASE URL: http://www.audiominx.com/books/chinatown-buffet/


GREENWOOD MANOR

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN: 1-59279-433-5 (Electronic)
GENRES: Paranormal / Erotica / Ghosts / Hauntings
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/GreenwoodManor.html

When Laura arrives at Greenwood Manor for a much needed vacation, the last thing she expects to find is a strangely familiar mansion inhabited by ghosts, one of which claims to be her dead husband. Memories start resurfacing, but is she prepared to face the truth of a past life?

Also available in audio format:

PUBLISHER: Audio Minx

PURCHASE URL: http://www.audiominx.com/books/greenwood-manor/


NANA’S LITTLE BLACK BOOK

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN: 1-59279-441-6 (Electronic)
GENRES: Fantasy / Erotica / Paranormal / Witchcraft / Magic / Shapeshifter / Demon
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/NanasBlackBook.html

When Catrina finds a little black book hidden within a secret vault in her dead grandmother’s room, she has no idea it’s a mean of summoning demons. That is, not until one is standing within her living room, butt naked and more than willing to fulfill all her needs.

Also available in audio format:

PUBLISHER: Audio Minx

PURCHASE URL:
http://www.audiominx.com/books/debut-tuesday-nanas-little-black-book/


LYCAN LORE

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-137-1 (Electronic)
GENRES: Dark Fantasy / Erotica / Werewolf / Shapeshifter / Series
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/LycanLore.html

Cassandra always believed that lycanthropes were nothing more than mental patients with schizophrenia, until she finds herself running for her life through Redwood National Park’s campgrounds with a fur-sprouting, fang-wielding, moon-constrained juggernaut from Hell intending to have her for dinner. Much to her initial chagrin, her savior comes in the same form. Only, unlike his bloodthirsty counterpart, Cray can control his werewolf form. Before he can claim her as his one true mate, the wolf that hunts Cassandra has to be stopped, for once a lycan scents its prey, it’ll never relinquish its quest to complete the kill.


EROTIKOS

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-217-0 (Electronic)
GENRES: Dark Fantasy / Vampire / Shapeshifter / Time Travel / Action / Adventure / Interracial / Multicultural
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/Erotikos.html

It’s girl’s night in, three horny women and an evening of drinking and gossip. Mina has brought Erotikos, a strange game that promises to fulfill their every sexual desire with their choice of eight gorgeous men. With a simple roll of the dice, they’ll embark on a series of adventures where reality ceases and fantasy begins.

Also available in audio format:

PUBLISHER: Audio Minx
PURCHASE URL: http://www.audiominx.com/books/erotikos

CHASING BOOTY

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-267-5 (Electronic)
GENRE: Science Fiction / Futuristic / Action / Adventure / Interracial / Multicultural
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/ChasingBooty.html

When cops can’t catch the most wanted criminals, they hire Gaelyn. She thrives on adventure. Only one other hunter matches her status, Reese, a Trøndite from the small planet of Sør-Trøndalag. The man had a knack for stealing her contracts. While chasing her latest mark, she runs into Reese on Quaoar. He not only has the information she needs to catch the bad guy, he’s got a business proposal that’s too tempting to pass up. A partnership with Reese just might prove rewarding in a way she never expects.

Also available in audio format:

PUBLISHER: Audio Minx
PURCHASE URL: http://www.audiominx.com/books/chasing-booty/


LYCAN LORE 2: OFFSPRING

PUBLISHER: Amber Quill Press
ISBN-13: 978-1-60272-360-3 (Electronic)
GENRES: Dark Fantasy / Werewolf / Shapeshifter / Ménage (M/F/M) / Group Sex / Series
PURCHASE URL: http://amberquill.com/AmberHeat/LycanLore2.html

On the run from Cray, a werewolf hunter determined to eliminate her and her unborn child, Heather flees to the crowded shores of South Beach, right into the arms of a man who could prove more than a one-night stand. Despite his own lycan heritage, Cray has taken a vow to protect humanity from his kind. With a new lead on his target, he plans on hunting her down. Cassandra knows what her best friend has become, but refuses to accept Heather’s fate. If she hopes to save her, she must find a way to protect her from Cray.


DARK TALES 1: VAMPYRESS

PUBLISHER: Wild Child Publishing
ISBN-13: 978-1-935013-10-5
GENRES: Vampire Horror
PURCHASE URL: http://www.wildchildpublishing.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=71&products_id=231

Cursed to harbor the beast that drove the Prince of Walachia to perform unspeakable acts of cruelty upon her loved ones, Ivona Knight has spent the last five hundred years eliminating all descendants of the Dracula line. Trapped within a remote tavern by a hammering storm, she engages in a storytelling game with her fellow patrons. But as she conveys her tale, she senses a familiar presence emanating from one of the others that stirs emotions deep within her which only one other has ever evoked. Has she found her next target? Or has she become the hunted?

BIO:

Shannon Leigh is a practicing registered nurse who graduated with a B.S.N. R.N. from the Indiana University School of nursing in May of 1996. She lives in Indiana with her husband, four sons, dog, and cat. Shannon and her family enjoy camping, fishing, and sitting out back while a cozy fire crackles in the fire pit. In her spare time, Shannon likes to decorate cakes, scrapbook, draw, read, write, and watch movies.

Along with reading other romance genres, Shannon loves suspense, fantasy, and horror, but paranormal fiction remains her favorite. She has several stories available at Amber Quill Press, Audio Lark, and Wild Child Publishing. While most involve some paranormal aspect, she has dabbled in contemporary, and more recently, science fiction. With such an active imagination, she always has something in works.

2. How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newspaper?

A little bit of everything, really. Usually something I see or hear will spark my imagination. Sometimes just a topic will get me going.


3. What is your process from idea to first draft?

First I work on characters and setting. I research names, descriptions, era detail (when appropriate), and anything else I need to make the plot believable. Once I figure out who I’m writing about and where the story takes place, I pick a starting point, usually with one of the characters, and go from there.

4. Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

Usually reading or watching a movie with content similar to my storyline.

5. Who is your Yoda—your seasoned mentor?

Not sure I have a Yoda. I love so many different authors that I can’t say who influences me the most anymore.

6. What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

I haven’t attended any (but I probably should). I would think basic grammar and punctuation are a good place for every author. Unless you’re an English major, most people can’t remember all the rules for punctuation. Secondly, point of view is imperative. Most editors are pretty good about catching things like that, but I still see a lot of slips that shouldn’t have gotten through. I make them myself.

7. What person would you like to thank for inspiring you in your writing aspirations? How did this person help you?

My dad. He’s always encouraged me to do what I love. It doesn’t matter what the topic, just write it. Yes, he’s read at least one of my stories that I know of. I was mortified when I found out!

8. Have you ever used songs for inspiration?

Yes, I had to write for a story using a popular song title. That’s how Stairway To Heaven was created.

9. Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?


I have to have silence and no distractions. I get easily sidetracked so I do my best writing when I’m either at home alone, or after everyone else has gone to bed.

10. Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

I read pretty much any genre. Sometimes it does influence my writing, or sparks an idea.

11. Have you ever given assistance to a struggling new writer? Has another writer ever come to your aide? How?

Yes, I’ve given editing/writing advice many times. I’ve also asked fellow authors for opinions/suggestions on writing projects. Several years ago, I used to have an editing group, just a handful of authors. I got a request to join one day from a young girl who’d written a little and wanted some help. What began as an editing favor grew into a close friendship and a co-writing endeavor that will hopefully be finished and contracted this year.

12. What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?

Just getting a single book written and published is awesome. Each story I write still invokes that sense of pride.

13. If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?

Yes, I would donate to the National Tourettes Syndrome Association (http://www.tsa-usa.org/index.html). There are so many charities that need funding, but that one really touches my heart, for many reasons. So many people don’t understand Tourettes and automatically envision someone yelling obscenities, which is a form of Tourettes. My second oldest son was diagnosed earlier this year. I’d noticed some strange hand contracture and facial movements for quite some time. I suspected Tourettes because his father has similar symptoms but was never diagnosed and it tends to run in families, particularly in boys. While my son’s is pretty mild and a lot of people wouldn’t even notice unless they spent some time with him, a lot of other children have much worse cases. There’s no definitive reason for why their bodies have these “tics”, no specific treatment (they are usually treated for secondary conditions like anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, etc.), and no cure.

14. What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Educate yourself on the craft of writing, then pick what you like and write it. Don’t get discouraged when someone tells you “no”. Keep at it and you will eventually succeed.

15. If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?

Since you didn’t specify if it has to be a real animal or not, I’d say a unicorn. I’ve always had a fascination with these magical creatures. They are so pure and beautiful. I wouldn’t necessarily consider myself either pure or beautiful, but I do try to be creative and one of those people that make an impression, in a good way.

16. If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

Forensic Science, Oceanic Research, Scientific Paranormal Investigation

17. If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

To visit every country, stopping in every famous city and getting to know the people and their culture.

18. What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

My heroes must have a sense of accountability and responsibility. I want heroes who can love (or learn to love) and who aren’t afraid to let their feelings show without looking like pansies. He has to take charge, but not be a bully.

My heroine has to have a sense of self-worth and value. She’s not a self-pitying type and isn’t afraid to stand up for what she believes in. She’s self-sufficient, but knows when to let her man be in charge.

19. If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

Is this a loaded question? I hate politics, but I think ours need a drastic change. What happened to the day when politicians were actually for the people and not their own selfish agenda?

The second would be education. So many young adults fall through the cracks on getting a college education. Yes, there is funding available, but the middle class seems to miss out on a lot of it. You have too much money to get aid, but not enough to be able to afford school without student loans. There’s got to be a better way.

20. If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

The ability to heal any mental or physical ailment with my touch. Because I’m a nurse and my nature is to heal. Sure I’d love to fly or read people’s minds, but that only helps me. I’d have to help others first.



BLURB:


It’s been a long time since Renee and her two friends have gotten together for a girl’s night in. What could possibly be more fun than drinking margaritas, gossiping about their recent bed-partners, and playing drunken rounds of Twister until they all pass out? But when Mina shows up toting a bottle of José Cuervo Gold in one arm, and a strange game named Erotikos in the other, the girls’ evening is about to get a lot more interesting.

Even before they remove the contents, Renee senses something amiss. This is no ordinary game. Erotikos promises pleasures galore and adventures filled with sexual delight. But how can a cardboard pastime with its small stack of cards, two oddly marked die, and eight pewter men accomplish all this?

After reading the instructions, the girls select their character pieces—an Indian, a selkie, and a vampire. Three men of varying backgrounds, but all sexy as sin and tantillizing to the eye. With a roll of the dice, the game begins, and the three women soon find themselves pulled into a place where their wildest fantasies come to life...


EXCERPT:


Mina inclined her head, squinting as the white swirling words within the orb’s center began to take shape. “What’s that say?”

Almost against her own will, Renee felt her upper body sway forward, too. Unable to deny her curiosity, she deciphered the hazy message. “It looks like…‘Do you three agree?’”

“Agree to what?” Candi asked as she deflated back against the couch, her momentary thrill in danger of expiring to her characteristic boredom.

“Well, to the adventures, of course,” Mina snorted. “What else could it be?”

They all fell silent, exchanging looks of agreement, excitement, and unease in a room that suddenly seemed void of all objects and sound. It was almost as though a vacuum had sucked away everything but the three of them and this game. Renee felt weightless and drunk, but she sensed her surrealistic state wasn’t caused by alcohol.

Something else was amiss.

Mina and Candi nodded in unison, their wordless affirmations a bold and persuasive declaration to her instinctive rebellion, which screamed at her to decline. Obligation weighed on her like a woolen cloak soaked by rain. Before she could rationalize her behavior, she felt her chin dip forward in consent.

The room started to spin in a fashion similar to times when she’d awakened in the morning after having far too much to drink. But unlike then, her mind wasn’t distorted; rather, everything around had begun to move. Shifting, turning, the colors melding together like they did on one of those spinning art trays that slug paint together in a fashion no human hand could create.

Renee’s vision strained against the ambiance, searching for her friends, whom she knew were seated a mere few feet away. Panic rioted her insides when she saw that Candi was gone. Before she even looked, she knew Mina would be, too.

Pressure surrounded her on all sides, making it near impossible to move. She fought the resistance, struggling to turn her head to the right. She managed an inch or two, enough to confirm her fear.

Tears blurred her already fuzzy gaze as her terror grew. They slipped from the corners of her eyes, but never reached her cheeks. The air around her sucked them from her skin and into the ever-growing vortex around her.

Renee opened her mouth to scream, but the words seemed also lost in the churning eddy. She felt herself being lifted off the ground and drawn forward, pulled toward the coffee table. And as her paralyzed frame hovered in the air above the game, her nose mere inches from the now-wordless orb, she realized how they would complete their turns.

We’re going in.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Words From The Hero

Last month, when I had my blog tour, I featured some of my favorite hero lines from SILENT PARTNER. And so this month, (since it went over so well) I thought I'd feature some of the same, but from RÆLIKSEN and MAC LIAM (Book 1 & 2 of my Emerald Isle Trilogy).

Right now, both of those books are featured at ARe (All Romance eBooks) with a 40% off sale, and it's only for a limited time. So, if you like what you read here, jet on over and pick up those books at a huge discount.

Happy reading!

Ræliksen
ARe (SALE!) | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Nook

He reached out, sliding his hand past her neck and into the mass of dark hair that hung above her shoulders, grasping it to bring her closer, his breath upon her lips. “You are correct in saying that desires often come from things we cannot easily gain—mine, being that of your love. By all accounts, I do wish I could steal it. But I am not that sort of man. I will wait. Forever and a day…I will wait.”


Dægan touched his cheek where the sting of her hand still tingled. “Conceivably, that was ill. Forgive me. But I still believe she wanted something more than just a passing moment at the water’s edge. And I know there is a large part of you, no matter how much you deny it, that longs for the same. I saw it in your eyes. And I can give you that. I want to give you that. If you like the river as much as you say you do, then you will love the sea. You will love seeing your homeland from the distant bows of a ship where the meadow’s flowery arms wave in polite parting and the hills stand up to bid you farewell. ‘Tis like nothing you have ever seen. Come with me. Let me take you on the sea and show you what true freedom is.”


This time, he pulled her face toward his, prohibited her from anymore wayward glances. “Look not upon them. Your eyes needn’t see what wickedness I have done.” He drew her closer and cradled her head into his shoulder. “When the rain dies down, I shall remove them from here. Just sleep. I will stay awake and keep watch. By my guess, they will not be back without the help of reinforcements and by that time, we shall be long gone. At first light, rain or shine, we will be gone.”


He took her hand and placed her open palm firmly on his chest, interlacing her fingers with his own. “What I say to you is not easy, for I am a warrior of Thor and a son of Odin. In my youth I gave an oath, an oath that is stronger than a bond between men, and to break it, means I will not have a share in their glory upon my death. But hear me now, Mara. I would rather die in your arms, than die a courageous death for Odin’s approval or for Thor’s immense pride. I want to be as we are now, together in peaceful arms, waiting for the start of each day. I want to wake every morning to the sight of your blessed face, to the feel of your body against mine, and your kiss on my lips. I want to be with you forever…in this life and the next! What glory you give my heart is beyond a war god’s understanding. I need not Odin or Thor anymore. I could die right now—right here—and be a happy man. Marry me and make me a jubilant man!”


Mac Liam
ARe (SALE!) | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Nook

“I heard you,” Breandán replied, adoring those words. “But ‘tis not something you should say to me. Do you not know how hard I am trying to stand here and look at you, and not greedily take what is rightfully another man’s?”


“Fine. I love her. But what good does it do to proclaim it? My heart’s longing will never be satisfied. At the least you might find consolation in that, Northman. Be that as it may, I will protect her with every beat of my heart and there is naught you can do about it.”



“You have always known where I stood when it came to you,” he said in a low whisper. “Naught has changed in my heart since we last saw each other. And it never will.”


“Because I know ‘twould make you happy. Your happiness is all I have ever cared about.”


Breandán dipped his head lower to meet her eyes. “What I said about Dægan was not a lie. He was a good man and I am honored to have known him. No doubt, we had our differences, but we also shared a common ground—your welfare. Even between the many years that have separated us, I still care for you as much now as I did then. It pains me to know you have been alone all this time. But rest assured,” he proclaimed, lifting her chin with his hand. “You are no longer alone. As a friend, I will be here for you…for as long as you allow me.”


I hope you enjoyed them! And feel free to let me know your thoughts...I always welcome feeback.



Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Historical Acuracy In Writiing

How Do You Achieve Historical Accuracy?
If you write stories from the past, you know what I’m talking about when I say you must have historical accuracy in your work.  Readers will be dismayed with your story if you use modern language or insert something that didn’t exist at the time in which your story takes places.  Those who think readers don’t care, may be sadly mistaken and the price for such a mistake may be that they won’t read that author’s next historical book. 
Writers use all types of resources for their historical work.  I have a series by Writer’s Digest called Every Day Life in (the Middle Ages, Colonial America, Renaissance England and so on).  These are wonderful books that give the basics of clothes, entertainment, food, medicine and some common words.  I also have a book with all the Historical Time Tables in it for every year from first written historical documentation to present but these are brief notations only.
Each historical writer has a time period they are especially attracted to like the American Civil War and the aftermath.  My favorite time is 1900-1930.  I am lucky enough to have a research book that goes in depth about this time period with many pictures and illustrations titled Remember When.  This book above all others helped me when I wrote The Violin,  Harmonica Joe’s Reluctant Bride and my present WIP.  My research has also included some hands on, face to face experiences.  I went for a flight in a small plane and learned the instrument panel and how to get out of a dive by experiencing it first hand—a terrifying experience that.  I interviewed a homicide detective and had a long chat with an octogenarian who had lived through  the 1920’s and Great Depression.   I also had the good fortune to have parents who loved to talk about way back when they were growing up.
I don’t know about other authors but I enjoy the research sometimes a bit too much.  I can get lost in it because, well, it’s just fun. 
So, imagine what it might be like for a modern woman to try to make a meal using 1910 technology—or lack of in this case.

Harmonica Joe’s Reluctant Bride
By Sarah McNeal
Available at Western Trail Blazer Novels
Available at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble
Also available in print
Blurb:
A haunted house, a trunk and a date with destiny.

Lola Barton discovers a warp in time in an old trunk when she falls into 1910. She finds herself married to Joseph Wilding, a stranger shadowed by secrets. Mistaken for Callie McGraw, a thief and a woman of ill repute, Lola finds her life is threatened by a scoundrel. Joe stands between her and certain death. With danger threatening all around and secrets keeping them apart, can Joe and Lola find their destiny together? Or will time and circumstance forever divide them?
Excerpt:
Lola examined the metal bucket resting under the water pump in the dry sink and gave the pump a couple of thrusts to see how well it worked.  The pump worked with ease, testifying that Joe had maintained and oiled the pump workings well.  Cold, clear water propelled by the force of her exertions splashed into the bucket.  A burst of happiness invaded her chest as she filled the bucket and then filled the reservoir on the side of the stove.  She remembered her great grandmother’s old wood burning stove from her early childhood and had a faint recollection of how they worked. 
            Amazement filled her at how easy it might be for her to adjust to this rustic life.  If she could ditch the tight corset, this life might even be tolerable for a while.  Visiting an outhouse for personal business was, however, something she did not look forward to.
            Lola took up the iron handle she found lying on the shelf above the stove, poked it into the slot of one of the burners, and lifted the round lid up.  Everything seemed to be in working order.  She found some pine chunks in a metal box beside the stove and threw them into the stove.  Taking a match from the box above the stove near the plate warmer, she scratched it on the rough surface of the stovetop until it ignited and then threw it onto the kindling inside the stove.  The kindling didn’t catch fire so she tried it several more times without success.
            “Here, now.  I’ll help you with that.”  A baritone voice spoke with quiet confidence just behind her as she attempted once again to get a fire lit.  His voice rippled down her spine in a wave of heat that caught her breath.  He stood much too close for comfort.  

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

JASON'S ANGEL from A HISTORICAL COLLECTION


Hi everyone! I just wanted to share with you all what a great month May has been for me! I have had two short stories released this month with Victory Tales Press. Today I wanted to tell you about the one that appears in A HISTORICAL COLLECTION, an anthology that I’m in along with Karen Michelle Nutt (The Devil’s Wolf), Kate Kindle (A Tale From the Red Chest), and Miriam Newman (Deirdre). These stories all take place in different historical settings and time periods. My story, Jason’s Angel, is set in the final days of the War Between the States.

Writing Jason’s Angel wasn’t easy. My conundrum was the fact that for me, the Civil War was such a tragic time in our history that I wasn’t sure if I could see that my characters reached their “Happily Ever After” ending that I wanted them to have. The only way I could see to do that in this case was to make Sabrina Patrick’s compassion so great that she saw beyond all boundaries of gray or blue, and didn’t think of the hero, Jason McCain, as the enemy, but first as a wounded man who needed her help.

Since Jason and another fellow Union soldier had been captured and are being held in the hospital where Sabrina volunteers, she knows that they will both die of their wounds if she doesn’t do something more than let nature run its course in those deplorable conditions. There is nothing she can do but bring them home, away from the inhumane treatment they are receiving from their guard and even from some of the hospital staff. No one is more surprised than her Aunt Emmaline, who is none to happy with Sabrina’s decision.

The only thing that could make matters worse is to find out that not only is Jason wearing Yankee Blue, he’s a southern boy, born and bred in Georgia—only a few miles from where Sabrina’s home is situated. What could make him fight for the Union? As Sabrina finds out more about Jason’s devastating past, she begins to understand. Because he is half Cherokee, his family has been shunned, and unimaginable tragedy has followed. Can his restless soul find peace in Sabrina’s sweet love for him?

I will leave you with a blurb and excerpt from JASON’S ANGEL. To order A HISTORICAL COLLECTION, go to the Victory Tales Press store here:
http://victorytalespress.yolasite.com/online-store.php

or to my Amazon author page here:
http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B002JV8GUE

If you would like to read about the other exciting stories in this anthology, or any of the other anthologies that Victory Tales Press offers, here’s the link
http://victorytalespress.yolasite.com/online-store.php

I WILL BE GIVING AWAY PDF COPIES OF A HISTORICAL COLLECTION TO TWO COMMENTERS TODAY! Please leave a comment when you stop by to read the blog along with your e-mail address and you will be automatically entered for the drawing.
Jason 's Angel by Cheryl Pierson Two wounded Union soldiers will die without proper treatment. Sabrina Patrick realizes they won't get it at the Confederate army hospital where she helps nurse wounded men. She does the unthinkable and takes them to her home.
Jason McCain’s pain is eased by the feel of clean sheets, a soft bed, and a touch that surely must belong to an angel. But what reason could an angel have for bringing him and his brother here?

FROM JASON'S ANGEL:

Sabrina nodded. “Is there something else, Aunt Emma?”

“You’ve been acting mighty peculiar, Sabrina. Did something happen between you and Jason?” The kindness and assurance of understanding, no matter what, in her aunt’s tone undid what little resolve Sabrina had left. She had been on pins and needles since Jason had kissed her. And she’d thought of nothing else. But she’d been careful to avoid being in a similar position again since that day, and when she’d brought up his meals there had been only polite conversation between them.

Once, she’d thought she’d caught a glint of a deviling reminder in his eyes, but he’d looked past her after a moment and she couldn’t be sure. She couldn’t even tell Desi. Desi would have gotten the greatest bit of fun from that knowledge—and she was unpredictable.

For all Sabrina knew, had she confided in Desi, her younger sister might have decided to take matters into her own hands and tell Jason that Sabrina liked it. Which she had. Or that Sabrina wished with all her heart he would kiss her again. Which she did. She might even tell him of that indescribable rush of wind and heat and wonder that moved over her entire body when their lips had met—a feeling that she was still trying to figure out how to put into words herself.

But Desiree would certainly have no trouble telling Jason what Sabrina had felt like—she was never at a loss for words. And that’s why Sabrina could never tell her—not until she grew up a little.

How wonderful it would be to unburden herself to Aunt Emmaline. And how utterly shameful.

“He…he kissed me,” she blurted. The familiar heat burned her cheeks.

But Aunt Emmaline only smiled, and Sabrina watched her face transform into a reminder of the beauty she must have been as a young woman.

“Is…that all?”

Sabrina took a deep breath. This was harder than she had imagined it might be. “No. I—Aunt Emma, I kissed him back.”

Aunt Emma didn’t answer for a moment. Finally, she took Sabrina’s hand in hers until Sabrina met her eyes. “Sabrina, when I was young—younger than you, though not quite as featherheaded as Desi—there was a young man in my life. He kissed me one time—and I kissed him back. I’ve often wished through the years, that I’d allowed myself a second kiss. Things…might have worked out very differently if I had.”

“Aunt Emma—are you saying—”

The older woman squeezed Sabrina’s hand gently. “I’m saying follow your heart. He’s a lonely soul, your Jason. He’s searching for a place in the world. And this world is changing, dear. He may never find it without your help. I’ve often wondered why you brought home two Yankees. I’ve done a little digging of my own, as well. These boys are Georgia born and bred. Mrs. Davenport knows of their family, the McCains from over near Allen’s Ridge.”

Sabrina was quiet, wondering how much of the family history her aunt had uncovered.
“I…learned quite a bit, Sabrina,” she said gently.

Apparently, though, she wasn’t going to share any details.

“Mrs. Davenport is a fount of information. Those men have been through hell, and not just the last years while the war has been raging.”

Sabrina nodded, her throat tight. What must Jason believe, after what he had told her? That she was keeping her distance because he’d opened his heart to her? Or, because he was, as he said, “a half breed”?

She had to go to him.