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Saturday, June 30, 2012

WisRWA Conference 2012

So this year the WisRWA Conference was in my town of Wausau, WI. First time EVER I didn't need a hotel! Which was nice, until I found out that all the hotel rooms there had HOT TUBS...

Oh well...

Friday night was a bit of an official "sad" because the editors and agents scheduled for the Editor & Agent Panel (Q&A about "The Biz") were stuck in Chicago & Detroit due to bad weather. Unofficially it rocked, because give a bunch of writers who don't see each other but once a year a room full of tables with a bar and dessert and we're happy little chit-chatters. Most of us spent the night "catching up"...into the wee small hours.

The headline speakers were Elizabeth Hoyt and Jade Lee. They ROCKED. Jade Lee did a presentation on Characters - Male vs Female POV with stuffed animals as props ("girlie" teddy bear and a purple gorilla). Lemme tell ya - the LOVE SCENES??? I laughed to hard (ever see a purple gorilla pull off "stud muffin"? me neither...) I got the hiccups. Lord, that woman's a trip.

One of the best events is "WisRWA's Got Talent" on Saturday, when an editor and an agent critique various anonymous first pages. The feedback never fails to be helpful to everyone. Felt bad for my friend Steve - he missed the reading of his b/c he was pitching...and b/c he told me to listen for the words in the TITLE and then they didn't READ the titles, I didn't know it was HIS until WAY after he got back. ARGH!

Fellow Samhain author Mary Hughes won a Reader's Choice Award! We went out to dinner at my favorite restaurant 2510. Where I go for all my "writer triumphs" and birthdays. Waitress asked what we were celebrating, and when I told her about Mary's award we got the chocolate "celebration cake" for free.

It was weird, because for the first time ever I didn't have ANYTHING to do. Since I wasn't a member I wasn't working and because I'd just sold God of Fyre Mountain to Samhain and Marek's New World to Noble, I didn't have anything to pitch. I just got to hang out and attend and visit. Great way to recharge the batteries. Writing can be a solitary profession, and nice to hang out with other people who "get it" is beyond price.

Elizabeth Hoyt gave a closing presentation on "We Don't Need No Muse" which was Elizabethian-speak for "How to glue your butt to that chair and WRITE...when you don't feel like it." When you have a sick kid. When you have overtime at your day job. When your dog wants another walk. When you'd rather be at the beach. Very good for us non-disciplined, easily-distracted types... *cough cough* (I'm being good, Mom, honest - I'm going back to writing Moonwitched as soon as I finish this blog...)

Wish Conference was more than once a year, but maybe we wouldn't appreciate them as much? Would get too commonplace? Can't WAIT for next year - Twitter and Facebook just AREN'T the same.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Sweet N Sexy Divas: Making a Trailer

Sweet N Sexy Divas: Making a Trailer: Okay. I've had book trailers before. Only thing is, I paid somebody else to do 'em. When my editor asked if I wanted to link one to LOVERS...

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Has this ever happened to you?

Well now, it looks like I've hit a first - my mind went blank while working on an erotic scene! lol I just stuttered and came to a stop.

I took a break, then got back into the story, only to find that I couldn't continue.

Has this happened to you? As erotic romance writers, the *erotic* scene is one of your most important parts of the story.

Man, it's one thing to have writer's block, but erotica block??

After giving it some thought, I realized that there is a limit to the different ways the hero and heroine could intimately engage themselves in. I admit that I"m a straight-up one man, one woman author, but as I see the increase in menage, kink, tasteful taboo, BDSM, unusual toys, etc., I wonder if I'm missing something.

Do I branch out in order to snare more readers? Or do I stick with what I know?

I admit that the thought of putting together a menage or understanding the needs of a submissive are a bit daunting, but I'm an adventurous gal, so I may give these other erotic situations a look-see. In the meantime, I now have an almost complete WIP crying out to me to finish the 3 hetero-sexual erotica scenes that somehow dried up. LOL

Once I get this WIP done, I'm gonna do some exploring - does anyone have any favourite books that encompass the more curious aspects of erotic romance that they can recommend?  ;)

On a personal note, this will be my last blog post for the next little while. I have medical issues to get through, so decided ot take a break until I can get these resolved. It's not serious, thank God, but still annoying. Maybe I'll get my WIP done! :)
Char

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Uses of 50 SHADES, Women in Charge!


Women have minds of their own!

Man on a pedestal?
     Trends in fiction reflect society's changes. Never is that more true of women's fiction.
     We could begin with PAMELA, the first female-centered novel, which to many literates is the first romance. Far from it in terms of proper treatment of a woman as an equal, PAMELA nonetheless reflects much of the behavior toward women during that 18th century period.
     So too are Jane Austen's works in which blue-stockings like her heroines might be imbued with an intellect, wit as well as charm. JANE EYRE shows us a women beset by social mores and economic conditions (as well as legal issues of inheritance). But Jane learns the error of accepting social strictures, especially and almost simultaneously with her financial windfall and freedom. She decides to opt for love and viola! She returns to Rochester to learn that he in many (horrible) ways has been relieved of his social and marital burden and is, himself, free to love her and marry her.
     As we progress through the Victorian period, we find a few examples of women freed of their strictures, but not until the early sixties do we see the rise of Harlequin romances. (In fiction aimed at men, the hard boiled mystery starring dames show women as ruthless, cunning and not at all worthy of a man's respect or affection. My reference here are the works of Mickey Spillane.) In the Harlequins, the norm was woman gets man, marries man, lives happily ever after. But that formula soon was challenged by economic conditions that saw the rise of divorce, the incidence of women going to work in greater numbers and the inception of birth control.
     While we see these elements portrayed clearly in the period piece tv show MAD MEN, what we see in fiction aimed at women is the proliferation of the Harlequin type category romances with various houses getting into the marketplace. Once Rosemary Rodgers and Kathleen Woodiwiss hit us with historical romances wherein the woman was the honorable lead character and the hero was a dashing fellow, the market exploded with Happily Ever After Romances. In the US, this was the late 70s and 1 80s, when women had to return to work, driven by 20% inflation and 75% tax rates. As we know by many studies of this female readership today, she wanted a viable romance with a hero who was dashing and honorable himself. Moreover, this reader needed this ending because she was (and still is) overworked and underpaid. Overworked at her 9-5 job. Underpaid yet today, earning in the US 74 cents on the dollar compared to her male counterpart. And still she went home and does now to do the laundry and cook dinner!
     (Hey, I am tired simply remembering what I did back then!)
     And what has happened since the 1990s? We have had more frequent and more open conversations about such no-no topics as abortion, partial abortion, homosexuality, marriage rights, and invitro fertilization. Ancillary to those "sexually" oriented topics, we now converse (or in some cases, on cable news, we argue and bully each other) about individual rights vs. the common good, typified by the famous (or infamous, depending on your view) law demanding inter-vaginal sonogram of women seeking abortions, most notably argued in the State of Virginia and passed in the State of Texas.
     No surpass then, that we are now at the point in our public discussions of eroticism. While erotic literature has been around since the Ancient Greeks, and erotic art since the Chinese depictions during the reign of Chin Shih Huang-ti, the Victorian period saw numerous publications devoted to it. 
     But the modern proliferation of it aimed at this female readership can be marked in publishing with the advent of Virgin Books' Black Lace line in the 1990s and the establishment of Ellora's Cave in 2000. While the Black Lace line focused on readers who were upscale, literate and adventurous, the EC outreach spanned that market segment as well as the reader who wanted science fiction, paranormal, contemporary and historical aspects to her escapist fiction. The success of the EC model, in  focus and method of digital delivery, is acclaimed by the proliferation of other houses which adopted the EC business model and cultivated that same readership.
     Today, while 50 SHADES, et al, sits atop the Best seller lists every where in every format, we see that beneath her sales sit thousands of authors with thousands of erotic romances earning hundreds and thousands of dollars each month.  The sales persist because the readers exist. They want to know about their bodies and their possibilities for enjoyment of sex and for the happy ending to their relationships. Their enthusiasm for this knowledge cannot be dampened. The public discussions about sexuality are too numerous. From the debate over whether or not Planned Parenthood should receive federal funds for women's health care to the passage of bills requiring women to do one thing or another with their own bodies, women are engaged in discovering their abilities, their potentials and their happiness.
     Indicative of this demand by women is the case of the Florida library system that tried to ban 50 SHADES from its shelves. The library had to reneg. Why? Because women in the US continue to be the ones who read more than men. They read fiction more then men. They have a higher reading level and a higher literacy rate. They also encourage their children to read. And they contribute to local library fundraisers.
    Yes, 50 SHADES as a best seller is a phenomenon. But as we already see, other erotica titles are on the best seller lists, too. A few before 50 SHADES hit. Many more to come.
     Why? Because women will demand the reading material they need to relax and to become informed.
More than that, they will use it to become more powerful in their own sexuality and more comfortable with it.
     As many do know, you can't keep a good woman down. Or away from a book that stirs her imagination and educates her at the same time!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

HUNGRY FOR CHARACTERS

Hello everyone

Well it’s that time of the month again (now where have I heard that saying before!) and as I laze in bed with my laptop propped on my knees I thought about the last few months as I recovered from total knee joint surgery (very ouchy ouchy!) I reflected on the books I’ve read during this time.  Firstly I was really spoilt when writer friends gave me a kindle as a get well gift. So sweet of them.  So that was a new toy to start with.  What I’ve found myself doing is reading books in genres that I normally wouldn’t read because over the years I’ve kinda narrowed my reading down to plain old romance.  But I wanted to read The Hunger Games series as I wanted to see what all the fuss was about – and I surprised myself as I really enjoyed them, apart from when the dogs attacked, that was a bit too ikky for me.  But it got me thinking about characters and characterization.  Now I know I’ve already talked about heroes and heroines in this blog before, but I thought I might chat about the other characters that make up books and what endears them to a reader.  Now endear might not be the right word here.  Maybe it should be what grabs us about them.

In my books I tend to really only have a small cast of characters.  I’ve tried writing multiple character books years ago but found it hard to find each person’s different ‘voice’.  These days I mostly have only four main players, two of which obviously are the hero/heroine and then sometimes there’s a child or aunt, mother, father, brother, grandmother or sister.  These are the ones I love to develop a personality for.  They are the counter-personality of either the hero/heroine.

In The Hunger Games Katniss had Prim who was the complete opposite in Kat’s eyes to her.  Prim was just that – prim – she was sweet, caring, nurturing, naive in some ways, though I did find Kat quite naive too, taking a long time to figure people out.

Gale and Peeter.  Now to me both men were like puppy dogs in that they loved Kat and would do anything for her and did, but as the series unfolded both men went in different directions.  Gale – a hunter in a small closed world drew apart from Kat and as the war unfolded he became the warrior, whereas Peeter I felt really ended up wanting the quiet life – but who wouldn’t’ after all those experiences.

But it was Finnick who I was intrigued with most.  This smart mouth veteran of the Games was kinda the sleaze ball guy at first but his redemption was huge in my eyes as his journey continued. 

So here we have characters who though not the ‘main’ character they are pivotal in the story and MUST grab the reader. 

For me I think my sub-character Zane Harper, who is hero’s Cade Harper’s brother in HE’S THE ONE, is one of my favorites.  This guy has a smart mouth, but a caring heart and would stand guard to protect his brother no matter what.  He’ll also push his brother into love despite his brothers’ avowal that he’s not interested.

Then there is Carly’s family in ROMEO FOR HIRE  .  This loser family is what makes Carly who she is. Hard working, career orientated, determined not to be like them.  But when she becomes pregnant she realises she’s becoming just like her family.  Their characteristics are in her despite all her hard work.

Characters and their traits play such a role.  I suppose that is just the same in our own lives.  We are a mix of our family, heritage and culture.

So on I go with reading and being brave and reading across different genres.  Would love to know what you’re reading now, and what’s in your to be read pile and what you like and loathe in characters.

Happy reading





HE’S THE ONE:  A house full of antiques and dead animals, and a mother who won’t let her forget her dead fiancé - http://tinyurl.com/cxskfud







SECRETS AND SEDUCTION:           Want tug-your-heart love, raise-the-roof lust, a marriage of convenience and hot sex that will give a whole new meaning to the word “wildcatter”.  http://tinyurl.com/8793elo








Monday, June 25, 2012

Log Lines


With the RWA National conference staring us in the face, I volunteered to act as an editor/agent so chapter members could practice their pitches. Having been the pitcher so many times I’ve lost count, I’m always glad to help others overcome their nervousness. I know I still get butterflies when I lose my mind and pitch to an editor I don’t know. And I’ve yet to brave the mysterious world of agents. I’d likely faint or—like I did when I acted in my very first play—lose my voice on my only line.

Anyway, one thing I stressed to the pitchers was a tight log line (no more than twenty-five words—shorter even better).

Why?

  • It tells the pitchee you know your story. In my mind a polished log line equals a polished story. Not that my stories don’t need editing—just saying a good log line may gain you a reading you might not get if you ramble.

  • No good log line goes to waste. You can use it in your query letters and on your website and promotion materials. There’s even a blog site dedicated to these polished kernels that, hopefully, will intrigue readers to take a look at your book and buy it.

So while you’re writing, manuscript or query letter or promo stuff, keep working toward that perfected log line. You’ll be glad you made the effort.

Here’s mine for the book with the hot cover:

Sometimes a woman has to take a flying leap of faith—even if it’s into the arms of a man hell-bent on her destruction.

Oops. Guess I need to get this jewel posted.

Dee Brice
Erotic Fantasies Where Nothing is Forbidden

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Happy Release Day To Liz!

That is...of course...to me!


Essence of Time, The fourth book in my popular Stewart Realty series releases this weekend.  I've been a good little author for the last 4 days, promoting my ever loving arse off at RomFest in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.  It's been fun, don't get me wrong. And for my "first" Con a great experience!


I've had my first book signing, my first set of readers accosting me at breakfast with "I was up ALL NIGHT an it's YOUR FAULT!" moment, lots of firsts, really---including my first "Top Pick" from The Romance Reviews review site. More on that momentarily.


But I'm beyond thrilled to announce that I'll be giving away EITHER an e-copy OR a paperback copy of your choice of the Stewart Realty series to one lucky commenter today so, you know, be all clever in your comment---I'm picking in a wholly unscientific way (and if you've been in my contests before you know I'm prone to give more than one).


If you are wondering what all this fuss is about, please allow me brag just a skosh:  This is what the reviewer for The Romance Reviews said about SWEAT EQUITY: Stewart Realty Book 2 (the book that also got a JERR Gold Star a few months ago)...Ahem:


This is truly not the happily ever after I was hoping for after the somewhat engagement that happened in Floor Time. It seemed that everything exploded in this book. Characters were everywhere and each seemed to have his own problems. The amount of raw emotions and sheer passion is so passionately written it's absolutely wonderful. Applause for Ms. Crowe.

I felt so confused throughout this book but at the same time could actually see it happening in real life. It seems that Jack and Sara hit so many roadblocks in their relationship but they are the ones that are creating them and they have only themselves to fault for that.

Talk about a cliffhanger in this book! I can't wait to go home and buy the third book in this series to see if Jack and Sara get together. But most importantly, see how it all comes together and how it ends. I have developed my own happily ever after conclusions for all of the characters but let's see if any of my own conclusions are what the author comes up with.

I urge readers to pick this book up, but if you have not read the first book in the series, Floor Time, I encourage you to read it first. This absolutely the best book I have read this year.



Yeah, I have been staring at these words a lot.  Pretty cool, considering not 2 weeks ago I had an equally vehement "keep your day job" review from another Big Shot Reviewer.  Sigh....can't win 'em all can ya?


So. without further ado...Essence of Time.
The Blurb:

For years, Rob Freitag has resisted anything resembling a true emotional connection, preferring instead to explore life and his own desires without committing to anyone for very long. The reason behind this remains known only to a few, among them Jack Gordon, his college cohort in female conquests and lifelong friend. While he is close to achieving his career goal as head chef of a five-star restaurant in Chicago, he is still very much alone.


Blake Thornton’s heart has been shattered by an intensely emotional relationship with Suzanne Baxter in Ann Arbor. Completely broken by what he believes was his one true love, he arrives at a Chicago food and beer festival, prepared to drink his sorrow away. When the two men meet, their lives are changed forever. But time is of the essence for Rob and when he acknowledges his true feelings, he will stop at nothing to keep them together, including finding a surrogate mother for the child Blake to desperately wants.

Lila Warren is recovering from a nasty divorce, needs cash and believes carrying their baby will fulfill her in ways her marriage never did. None of them suspect that the connection they share will provide the final emotional key to their life-long puzzle. When Rob’s secret is revealed, time becomes the one luxury they don’t have, setting in motion a chain of events that shatters the fragile illusion of happiness for them, and everyone around them. 


THE EXCERPT (WARNING: MAN LOVE) 

Rob poured him more wine before turning back to pull the pasta from the stove. “Check that will you? See if it’s properly al dente?”


Blake nodded, rising to the challenge. He tasted, found it perfect. “You know, it probably could have used another minute or two.” He sipped and watched the blood rise in Rob’s fair cheeks.  He had no idea why he felt a need to provoke but loved it. “I’m sure it will be fine.” He turned away, lest he yank the tall handsome god-like man to him and do something foolish. The table was set, with no-fuss white ceramic dishes, simple flatware and one candle.
They shared a few anecdotes about random drunk idiots that peopled every decent beer festival as Blake sat on the couch and tried to summon self-control. He had no business here. The odd connection he felt with Rob was surely born of nothing but simple lust. But while his body continued to thrum with erotic anticipation of what would no doubt be an amazing lay, his heart had relaxed its tight, anxiety-ridden contraction for the first time in nearly a month. This man might be exactly what he needed, on a physical level at least, but the promise of more gave him some pause.
By the time Rob emerged from the kitchen, a bowl of the pasta tossed with the amazingly prepared simple fish, vegetables, garlic and cheese in one hand and a basket of no-doubt fresh-baked bread in the other hand, Blake had to grip his knees to keep from launching across the room at him. He stood, slowly, stretching, trying to stay non-committal and uninterested.
They sat in uncomfortable silence, clinked wine glasses and sipped. Blake was relieved that Rob seemed as flustered as he was, at least for now. Once they started eating and the true supremacy of the man’s kitchens skills became apparent, Rob seemed to visibly relax. He speared a fat scallop, held it to Blake’s lips. Blake took it, bit down and let the oily, sweet, rich concoction fill all his senses once more. He shut his eyes, chewed, swallowed, then opened them.
“Pretty good. But a bit over salted, wouldn’t you say?” He grinned and kept eating, breaking bread into small bits and dragging them through the garlic oil at the edges of his plate.
Rob frowned, then lifted his chin, eyes narrowed. “You’re a smart ass, you know it?”
“Yeah. So I’m told.” Blake ate two entire plates of the amazing stuff, and they relaxed into conversation about beer, wine, food, the restaurant business, segued into Blake’s gastro pub dream for a moment. Finally, they pushed their plates away, appetites for food sated. 
“So, after years of training, practice and food science I stand by the mantra: the simpler the better,” Rob declared, holding his wine glass up to the light, letting it catch the thick legginess that slid down the inside of the bowl. Blake nodded, allowed himself a small second of contact between their legs at the small table before leaning back so he could better observe the man with whom he was prepared to … “Except of course,” Rob interrupted his reverie. “When it comes to dessert.” Rob stood, put a hand on Blake’s shoulder
.
“Because real desserts are truly a perfection of complexity.” 
“Of course, there is the simple perfection of a strawberry dipped in chocolate.” Blake insisted, the contrarian in him rising to the bait. Rob chuckled, and emerged with two ramekins of crème Brule and a blowtorch. Blake grinned.
“What a showoff,” he mumbled, standing and cupping a hand behind Rob’s neck. “Now kiss me before I’m intimidated by your kitchen prowess and run screaming into the night.”


Rob’s entire body felt hot, enervated, oddly at peace and at once revved beyond belief. As his lips met Blake’s the sense of transcendence, of actual fulfillment overwhelmed him. This, the man in his arms, was what he wanted, what he required. That thought cut through all his usual avoidance bullshit like a god damned
Ginsu
knife. He gripped Blake’s shoulders, slid his hands down his back, pulled him close and swept into his mouth, loving the way the man met him halfway. No, not loving it, needing it like he had never needed anything before.
“God,” Blake gasped as they broke the kiss and Rob licked his way down the extreme beauty of Blake’s neck. “Seriously. I’m…ah…” Rob ran his hands down Blake’s torso, gripped his ass, and then moved back up, unable to settle on any one expanse of flesh. All of him was so amazing. So fucking perfect. Blake struggled out of his arms then.
Blake stepped back, stared at Rob, chest heaving. “I…don’t think I’m ready.” He muttered, running a hand down his face.
Rob took a breath, grabbed the blowtorch and
crystallized
the top of the custardy desserts for them. He sat, dipped out a spoonful and held it to Blake’s lips. If the man wanted to go slow, then go slow he would. Because the sudden piercing light of actual attainment was making him dizzy. Blake was his, or would be very soon, of that Rob was certain. He smiled as the young man took the bite of creamy dessert, watched as he swallowed it, then dipped out yet more, feeding him the entire bowl reveling in his youthful appetite.
Slow down Frietag. This guy is just that. A guy. A piece of ass. A fine one, to be certain, but nothing more.
They polished off a second bottle of expensive Italian wine, the other dessert and nearly dissolved in a boozy pool of lust. But just as Blake was reaching for his zipper, Rob put a hand over his, kissed him once more and moved away. “No, Blake. Not yet. I’m sorry. You aren’t the only one not ready.”
His heart convulsed at the look in the young man’s eyes. The grateful, nearly teary gaze made Rob catch his breath; he put a hand along Blake’s rough cheek. He had no words, or if he did, they didn’t need saying. Not yet. Dear
god
, but he wanted to say them. Blake shifted further away from him and stood.
“Okay, I’m gonna go. Before we do something neither of us is ready for and both of us will regret.”
Rob shot to his feet. Putting his hands on either side of Blake’s face he kissed him, hard, loving the way the other man’s body molded into his. Then he stopped. “Okay. Good plan.” In spite of every living piece of him screaming to toss Blake over his shoulder and throw him into his bed, he moved back, walked to the door. Going slow was something new, and if he were honest with himself, it worked. On a level separate from his aching balls, of course. Blake smiled, stuck his hands in his pockets. Rob had to bite the inside of his cheek nearly raw to keep from going with his primal instincts as they exchanged one last lingering kiss, and he watched the man head to the elevator. “When will I see you again?” He called at the last minute.
“Soon,” Blake leaned against the elevator wall, winked and disappeared behind the closing doors.




Friday, June 22, 2012

The Fast Driving Fantasy by Adele Dubois



--CONTEST ALERT!-- Giveaway!

The characters in my books drive fast motorcycles and hot cars. In real life, I’m scared of motorcycles, though they fascinate me. I compensate for my fear in fiction, where I can ride on the seat of a bike whenever I want. My REV ME UP and REV ME TWICE military heroes and INTIMATE ART story hero personify the hunk on a Harley ideal. Readers tell me they love these characters and I love them too.

My heroines tend to drive convertibles, like I do in real life. For me, there’s nothing more exhilarating than driving fast with the ragtop down. My DESERT FEVER and DESERT WILD heroines share my love of the open road. Though my car is a Sebring and they drive a Retro Thunderbird, we savor the feel of the wind in our hair, the sun shining on our faces and the thrilling sensation of speed. As long as there’s a stretch of open road, my characters and I will continue to fly.



Do you enjoy the fast driving fantasy? Do you like hot cars or cool motorcycles? Tell us about your ultimate fantasy experience and be automatically entered to win a fun REV ME UP motorcycle key ring, compliments of Adele Dubois. Item mailed USPS inside the continental USA. Winner will not be added to a mailing list and there is no obligation.



Buy Adele’s Books at Ellora’s Cave!

http://www.jasminejade.com/m-316-adele-dubois.aspx

Buy Adele’s Books on Amazon!

http://www.amazon.com/Adele-Dubois/e/B0036N2AXS/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Books by Adele Dubois are also available at Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, All Romance eBooks and most other etailers.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Sweet N Sexy Soulful Quotes

If you're like me, your calendar has filled up with weddings, graduations, and summertime parties. The moments you used to have for kicking back and reading are few and far between.


For me, time is precious and I know I'd like to spend those precious moments reading books I can't put down. Where the hero is strong enough to whisk me from my face-paced, chaotic life and light me afire with the sensual, slow burn of his heated touch and whispered words.

Sound like something you'd be interested as well? Then look no further.

The books I feature are from authors who were not afraid to be soulful, sappy, and/or suggestive when it came to their heroes. So, grab a seat, and pick up a pen and paper (or fire up your eReaders) so you can add these to your TBR collection.

Happy reading!


“I’m supposed to protect you,” Lucan murmured.

Cara rested her hands on his muscular chest and nodded. “You are.”

“Then who protects you from me?”

Before she could begin to understand what he meant, his mouth covered hers. His lips were firm, insistent as they moved over hers seeking, devouring. She was powerless to pull away as she sank under his spell, her desire flaring to life like dry wood on a fire.

She clung to him, her hands fisting in his tunic as he pulled her against him. A moan tore from her throat at the feel of his hard body and his arousal that pushed against her stomach.
~ Donna Grant, Dangerous Highlander



“You make me crazy. I’m so crazy about you. I can’t help it.”

“Oh shit.” A lightning bolt of pleasure flashed through her. Gina gasped and let her head fall back, abandoning her body to the ecstasy that coiled low in her belly, poised to strike. She moved above him, grinding to a rhythm only she could hear. “Please…please don’t.”

“I don’t want to,” Frank confessed. His mouth was hot and hungry against her skin. “God knows I don’t want to be, Gina.”

“You can’t.” A sob rose in her throat.

“Can’t help it.” He kissed her, his lips soft and unbearably sweet. “Can’t stop it. I think I might lov—”

She caught the word with her lips and swallowed before he could finish. It wrapped its tentacles around her battered heart and squeezed. She parted her lips, sighing into him as she tasted the tang of tenderness on his tongue as he framed her face in his hands. His t-shirt bunched in her hands, her nails threatening the integrity of the thin cotton. Thick muscles huddled in broad, strong shoulders.

At last his arms wound around her, holding her tight as his lips clung to hers. “No. Oh no,” she whispered.
~ Margaret Ethridge, Inamorata



Faolan tossed his head against her words, as he strode another step closer. “Don’t lie to me, woman. I have seen your aura. I can see into the depths of your heart. I believe ye are a bit more then something special. Now tell me who and what ye are.”

Ciara dropped the towel to the floor. With a delicious shiver, her skin tingled, not just from the heat of the fire but from desire for the man in front of her. His calling up of the storm had stirred her blood more then she cared to admit. It had been centuries since she’d seen such power rage within a mortal man. The time for words and explanations was over. She wanted Faolan deep inside her and she wanted him now.

Reaching up, she untied the ribbon holding back her curls. She let the abundant tresses fall like ribbons to her waist and tumble over her curves. She held Faolan locked within her gaze and eased across the room. Tracing her hand up his chest, her body molded against his, she nuzzled against the sweet, salty warmth of his neck. “I am your wife. I am here to make your life complete. Now cease this incessant talking and take me.”
~ Maeve Grayson, The Highlander's Fury



Carter looked down at the angelic face of the girl under his arm. The relaxed smile thatgraced her face made his heart swell. That smile he knew was for him and him alone. Cartertook a breath and tried to figure out where to start. He’d been trying to work out exactly how toask her, and given the circumstances, he wasn’t sure what he would do if she said no.

“What do you think about staying with me?”

“What do you mean?”

He saw her peek over her shoulder at Jesse and Eli, like maybe they knew what he wastalking about. They did, but both men just kept walking. Only at the last minute before sheturned her face back to Carter’s did Eli wink at her.

“I mean, sweetie, I want you to stay with me, in my motorhome.”

The questions in her head were apparent on her face, but Carter held in his chuckle.

“Tonight?”

There was a slight scrunch to his face and he shook his head. “Not…just tonight.”

“You’re kidding, aren’t you?”

“No, Gorgeous, I’m not,” he said, now with a completely straight face. Carter wanted her by his side for so many reasons, but after the events of the morning had unfolded, it had become a need to have her beside him. He’d tried since the minute he met her to keep his protective side under control. That was over. Molly had given herself to him, she was his now to protect, to love.

“For how long?” She tilted her head to the side.

Carter could tell she was connecting the dots of his plan, but wanted reassurance, instead of assuming the answers.

“I would have waited, Molly, given you more time to get used to this, to us. Let your family get to know me better. Let Brody calm down. But there’s not time for that now, sweetie. I want you with me, I have to keep you safe. I know your family can and will, but…that’s my job now. I love you.”
~ Amy Gregory, Racing To Love



Renee Vincent is an award-winning author of historical and contemporary romance.








Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Under the covers with a male model.


Romance readers have seen cover model, Jason Baca on numerous romance novel and I am now pleased to invite you to spend some time under the covers with Jason as he shares tidbits about his life and career.

Selena Robins: Welcome, Jason, let’s start off by telling us three things about yourself that not many people know?
Jason: I’m an animal lover, especially fluffy cats. One of my favorite foods is Uni (Sea Urchin). I dye my hair because I’m starting to get some greys.
Selena: I think I just heard a collective sigh from women everywhere when you mentioned your love for fluffy fur babies. What three words would your close friends describe you as?
Jason: They’d say, fun, unique & persistent!
Selena: What is your favorite persona to model for on a book cover?
Jason: I love being the bad guy. The villain, the mystery man that can’t be figured out. The good guy you seem to know all about. But I can play that roll too.
Selena: Who is your celebrity crush?
Jason: Alexa Davalos (played Andromeda from Clash of the Titans (1981) )
Selena: Guilty pleasure food? Pizza? Curly Fries? Spinach Salad?
Jason: Linguica and Anchovy pizza with a side of Litehouse Blue Cheese.
Selena: Guilty pleasure Television show?
Jason: Jersey Shore! Hey these guys make me laugh. I can’t help it. They are all too much and don’t hold back on their comments toward one another. That’s what makes it for me. They fight, they get drunk and say outrageous comments to one another. They get mad at each other and bang their head up against a cement wall. Or go dancing at clubs and forget to put on underwear. This cast is a memorable one.
Selena: You had me at pizza and then lost me at Jersey Shore. *LOL* You can still redeem yourself. Chocolate or vanilla ice cream?
Jason: Chocolate! It’s just better.
Selena: Redemption! Speaking of food, when you’re not indulging in your guilty pleasure do you adhere to a strict diet? Do you have a grueling workout schedule?
Jason: I eat a balanced diet all year long. It’s important I stay strict because of all the people that want to do what I do. There are many wolves trying to climb the hill that are hungry. But then there is me that is the wolf on top of the hill and when he wants the food… it’s there.
I do perform a grueling workout in the morning before I start my day. I make sure to do at least 1 hour a day for my body. I mean I work it out, I move the muscles so that they become sore. When they become sore, they become worked, when they become worked, they become nice looking.
Selena: Do you read any of the books you’ve appeared on?
Jason: I have actually and boy I have been on the cover of some amazing novels! I tell you! It is really cool to be able to say I’m on these covers. Such talent.
Selena: Do you work closely with the author? Tell us a little how a photo shoot works? 
Jason: I don’t work with the author directly, but I am given instructions on what theme will be taking place beforehand so I pretty much know what type of look they are going for.
For the photo shoot, I am extremely involved in preparing for the shoot. The morning of the shoot, I drink a full glass of cucumber mineral spring water. In the shower I begin with an exfoliating spa body wash. Then I use Olay’s Nourishing Body Scrub. I follow that up with Aveeno’s Lemongrass & Ginger Root Body Wash Plus. For my face I use Clean & Clear’s Nectar Exfoliating Scrub then Dove’s Beauty Moisturizing Wash then finally St. Ives Hydrating Indulgent face wash.
After towelling off I use an aloe deep penetrating body moisturizer followed by an oil free lubriderm daily moisturizer. For my face I use an anti wrinkle eye cream around the eyes and Cliniques Daily Moisturizer. I also use Garnier’s Daily Reginerist Face Lift Cream.
Selena: How did you get into modeling and into the romance cover model business?
Jason: For modeling, I was discovered by the on-set-photographer for “I Know What You Did Last Summer” who called me over to take a few snap shots.
As for the romance covers, I went about that on my own. I paid close attention one day to a romance cover in a bookstore and realized it was something I should be doing with my life. It was right up my alley. I knew I’d be a natural for this sort of thing and sure enough, it happened.
Selena: If you could change anything about the industry what would it be?
Jason:  I wouldn’t change a thing! I love every aspect of this business. There is so much to do and so little time in this arena that I am still trying to figure it all out myself. All the RT conventions going on or talk about this and that. Hard to keep up. But I like that. That means it’s a happening thing.
Selena: It is my understanding that there are photos independent authors can use of you for their book covers? Where is this site?
Jason: Yes. Authors can visit The Authors Red Room where a graphic artist is standing by. They name the photo they want to use and the artist creates the cover for them.
Thank you, Jason, it’s been a pleasure chatting with you and learning more about the modeling industry.
In love with her family, friends, books, laughter, hockey, lively discussions, chocolate and red wine (sometimes all at the same time), Selena is a dragon slayer who enjoys reading and writing sassy heroines and hot heroes.


After giving up her dream of becoming a movie star/dancer/singer, Selena decided that her second-in-line dream was to be a writer. Even if she never got published, she’d still want to write stories with fun characters and happy ever after endings.