Saturday, February 27, 2010

Me, myself, and I

Alice Gaines here. Dawn told me I could talk about whatever I wanted, so I thought I'd discuss my favorite subjects - me, myself, and I. Better yet, let's have them introduce themselves.

Myself: Good morning, or afternoon, depending on where you are.

Me: Aren't you getting all cute and geographical?

I: Starting out with the attitude already, eh?


Me: I see you're your usual snooty self.

Myself: Stop it, you two.


I: She started it.

Me: Mom liked you best.

Myself: No Smothers Brothers! You're dating us. Settle down. We're supposed to be talking about our two latest releases. I, why don't you go first?

Me: Yawn.

Myself: (Glares at both of them.)


I: Thank you. (Looks down her nose at Me.) My story is To Touch a Woman. It's in the series Three Kinds of Wicked from Red Sage Publishing.


My hero and heroine, Edward and Margaret Sinclair, are deeply in love with each other, but their marriage is in serious trouble. As good Victorians, neither of them learned anything about the sex act, and Edward's clumsiness causes Margaret pain every time they make love. She has no idea how to fix the problem, and her reassurances that she loves him, anyway, only make matters worse.

Me: Is that supposed to be exciting? Two rich English people who don't know their way around a bedroom?


I: Let me finish. Ahem, as I was saying...Edward and Margaret meet a mysterious stranger named Treveylan. His touch seems to have some calming effect on her. After dinner at an inn, when Margaret's left the two men to go to bed, Edward learns that Trey, as he insists on being called, is quite knowledgeable in the ways of the flesh. Desperate to do whatever he has to in order to save his marriage, he does the unthinkable...he asks Trey to make love with Margaret and allow him to watch. That way, she'll enjoy sex for once, and he'll learn how to touch his woman.

Me: Oh, it's a menage.

I: Yes, genius, it's a menage. And now, if you'll let me finish...The three stay together until Edward and Margaret have become experts at giving each other pleasure, and Trey leaves as mysteriously as he arrived.

Myself: That sounds like a very nice story.


I: Thanks. It's available at http://www.eredsage.com/.


Myself: Okay, Me, tell us about your story.



Me: My next release will be at Changeling Press. It's called Dragon Shift.

I: Dragon? Shift?

Me: Yeah, Sherlock. You figured it out. My hero and heroine are dragon shapeshifters.


I: There's no such creature.




Me: How do you know? Besides, it's a story. You should really just relax.

Myself: Mystery Science Theatre? You're dating us again.


Me: The dragon princess, Ilona, was kidnapped by demon shapeshifters as a small child.


I: (raises eyebrow) Demons, too?


Myself: Shhhhh.



Me: Now, she's mating age, and her mate - the dragon crown prince Drake - has to find her before one of the demons can seduce her and ruin her with his evil. Ilona doesn't understand why she keeps having uncontrollable sexual urges. She's been saving herself for the dragon she dreams of every night, but then, mischief shows up in the form of a sexy biker named Zimm. Her body craves Zimm, but her heart belongs in a beautiful, green valley with her dragon lover.


A stranger appears, claiming to be her dragon. She can't believe him, until he takes her on their mating flight. Then, they only need to break free from the demons who want to hold her to have their happily ever after.


I: That does sound exciting. And sexy.


Me: Thank you. It'll be on sale on March 5 at http://www.changelingpress.com/

Myself: There, now, wasn't that better?


I: I suppose so.


Me: Yeah, I guess.


Myself: On behalf of all of us, we'd like to thank you for spending a few moments with Me, myself, and I



Alice Gaines writes hot romances for Red Sage Publishing, Changeling Press, Spice Briefs, and soon Carina Press. You can write to her at authoralicegaines@yahoo.com or visit her website at http://www.authoralicegaines.com/

She does argue with herself from time to time and sometimes refers to herself in the third person, apparently.






Thursday, February 25, 2010

WRITER'S WRITE...WRITING PARTNERS FEUD



NURSERY HAM ON RHY...ME
By: Angelica Hart and Zi


Reflecting back on the period of time when we were writing KILLER DOLLS I recall during a Lamestorming session proposing something much like the following. Grand ideas find their genesis in the courage to present them. Lamestorming is the process we utilize where an idea is thrown on the table to see if it is viable or lame.

A: What are you doing with your dog?
Z: Correcting a mistake. (Zi was washing and drying the top of the dog's head. Apologizing and scolding)
A: Mistake? (Angelica looked perplexed)
Z: Unbeknownst to me the curious pup followed me into the bathroom and while I was splashing porcelain she put her head between my legs and well... thus the need for her cleansing.
A: Ick!!
Z: What about the story I left for you to read?
A: That was a ton of purple prose. Says nothing. Adds nothing. Just fills space.
Z: But I like it.
A: I like my date book but I would not try to publish it.
Z: Let me read it out loud to you. My great voice and intonation may sway you.

There once lived a bear family. The Thrice Ursines. A Poppa Bear. A Momma Bear. And a Baby Bear. This can be a standard modern day bear family. Zero population growth. You might have heard this story. If not, where the H E double toothpicks have you been?

One Saturday they sat down to breakfast of porridge, that's old story talk for oatmeal. The Poppa Bear tasted his porridge and said it was too hot. The other bears agreed and they decided to take a walk in the local forest so as to let the steamin' stuff become a more consumable temperature. Thus providing a possible answer to that age old question, "Did da bear shat in the woods?"

In addition one was sure that the to-be-Poopa Bear (pun intended) was also about to scold the Momma Bear about not paying attention to the cookin', thus perpetuating the social standards for gender interaction as the baby watched. That man's-king-of-his-domain stuff knows no animal kingdom boundaries. Shame on the old bear, he needs to watch 'im some Oprah Bear.

"What could you possibly have been thinking to allow the porridge to become scaldin'," i.e., a scoldin' on scaldin', alliteration intended. He could have been far more insulting but he did love his wife. And she did have very large teeth.

Well, the story continued. It does get a little more spirited. Along came a little girl named Goldilocks w/ long blonde gold hair, so transparently weak of a naming by the original author, lazy, but thus the name. Gads, I bet you knew that. Goldilocks. Imaginative parents. (Go with me for the story's sake) Probably they shared the same brain. (Weak analysis on my part... Ignore the previous comment) She saw the house and broke in. First degree breaking and entering. Criminal. A common burglar. Another commentary on the parenting thing albeit a lack of it by her parents who probably were self-absorbed. A trophy wife who spent all her time at the gym firming gravity influenced fleshy parts and a workaholic father who was having an affair with of all folks the mother's gynecologist. Lessons and values begin at home. That's another tale.

Well, she saw the three bowls of oatmeal and tried one, the Poopa Bear's, and naturally uttered, "This stuff is too #@%* hot!" Because she was a modern and undisciplined teenager she actually used the vulgar word. I am above that. Then she tried the next bowl, the Momma Bear's. "This stuff is too #@%* cold," she said flipping the bird. Shame on her. No one saw but it does speak to her lack of prudence. Then she tried the next bowl, the Baby Bear's. "This stuff is just right," and she ate it all up, so goes the story. What a piggy.

I'm certain most any middle American has heard this tale so let me move through it more quickly. She then did the chairs ... too #@%* hard ... too #@%* soft ... just right and then breaks the damned thing. Oops, I said damned but that's pseudo-ok. This all was an obvious statement to her size and/or the poor workmanship of the furniture maker. The modern girl of this day and age had a bit more mass on her arse then had her bulimic mother at her same age. The fast food phenomenon? Who knows. The Japanese would insist that it was the workmanship but it is all a mute point to the story. So forget I said anything.

Well, off to the bedrooms ... this bed too #@%* hard ... too #@%* soft ... obviously they have separate sleepin' accommodations an elderly thing of the first order of why Poopa Bear had such a poopa attitude. Additionally, an apt explanation as to why they have just one babe.

Moving on, quickly, we are moving, moving, moving, and then the baby's bed and that's just right and bingo to sleep she falls. This itself speaks to the nature of this girl. A bizarre thing to do. Consider this, you are breakin' and enterin' and for whatever reason you decide to take a nap. One must suspect she had a subconscious desire to be caught. Psycho-101.

Well, the furry family returned. You knew that. Shats accomplished. Myth no longer a mystery. You didn't know that. And now it began. The who's been eatin' my stuff... blaa blaaa... yes and ate it all up... my chair... blaa blaaa and broke it... the beds who's been sleepin' in my bed... who's been sleepin' in my bed finally said Momma Bear and messed up the frilly comforter. So gender cliché.

At this moment the baby bear opened his door a crack and looked in, turned to his parents, smiled and said, "Good night Mom and Dad!"

Z: The end. Well?
A: Wasteful exercise.
Z: Did it make you smile?
A: A little. (Grinning a lot)
Z: Then we need to find a place for it.
A: The trash bin.
Z: Fine. Break a writer's spirit.
A: Don't do the Jewish Mother guilt dump.
Z: Fine. You do know I am an excellent animal trainer. Taught my Elmo to crap on command. You might reconsider leaving your purse anywhere than on the floor... you mean destroyer of a writer's spirit person... you!
A: Are you done?
Z: Why, yes, I am. I have another story about a boy named Jack with some magic beans.

The moral to this story. Not all words even if you wrote them are good.
We'd love to hear from anyone interested in what we do. Anyone who emails us at angelicahartandzi@yahoo.com and leaves an s-mail address, we will send you a gift and add you to any future mailings.

Angelica Hart and Zi
Killer Dolls ~ September 2009
Snake Dance ~ February 2010
Chasing Gravitas ~ July 2010
angelicahartandzi.com

KILLER DOLLS and SNAKE DANCE IS AVAILABLE
Champagne Books
www.champagnebooks.com





Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Meet Author Allison Knight

Tell us about your latest book/upcoming releases. Is it part of a series and if so, can we read it as a standalone or do we need to read the others in the series first?
 
On the 5th of March, the second book of a Gothic Romance series will be available. This has no connection to the other books of the series, so it's a stay alone and a short to boot.  Only 20,000 words, or about 5 chapters.
It's follows the theme of the series. Shadowed Hearts. It's a traditional gothic written in the first person, with the poor orphaned heroine. I won't say more, except this one has a supernatural being in the story, spelled a real for-sure ghost!  Maybe. 
 
What makes a good book to you? Story? Characters? Exotic locations? I
 
A good book to me has to have several characteristic. First, I have to care about the characters. There have to be something terrible wrong right at the beginning of the story. Locations are not that important but woo to the author if the story doesn't end well.  I hate books with sad endings.
 
What's your favorite pizza toppings?
 
That one's easy. I love extra cheese, sausage and mushrooms.
 
What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done to one of your characters?
 
In Heartsong, my heroine is about to be burned at the stake. I think that's about as bad as it gets. But the way, the sequel to "Heartsong" is coming in August, from Champagne Books.  This too is a stand alone, and my poor heroine is treated to some bad attitudes in this one as well, but no stake burning this time.
 
Which of your books contains the sexiest love scene?
 
Actually, I think my third book in the Heartfire series for Kensington had my sexy love scene. The book has long been out of print, but I'm seriously considering revising it and reselling it.  I loved that book. (Oh, but I have this great affection for all my characters, darn it. I hate to see the stories shelved)
  
Which of your covers is your favorite?
 
Without a doubt "Heartsong" which is amazing, because one of my covers was done by a very famous cover artist for Kensington. However, there is something about the cover of Heartsong - perhaps the color, or the expression in the eyes, I don't know!  All I do know is when people see the cover they pick up that book. If they read any kind of historical they want that book.
 
Which of your books was the easiest to write? The hardest?
 
I think my last book for Champagne, A Treasure for Sara, was the easiest. Both characters stewed in my brain for a couple of years before I put them on paper. The question with that one was about where to locate the story. I wanted it in the west but after a trip to the Yukon I knew I had the site. The story just flowed.
 
And my hardest is the one I'm working on now. This takes place in England in 1665 and 66, during the plague and the fire. The research for this one has been the most involved. Trying to follow the king's movements during all of this and getting time and location of the plague, the fire, and putting my heroine and hero in all the right spots without ruining the plot has been a real challenge. I finally had to develope a time line and now the thing is flowing again. (Huge sigh of relief. This may be my favorite heroine. We'll see.  I love a lady who's not afraid to tell off a King)
 
What is coming in 2010 from you?
 
As I said, The Haunting of Hastings Hall will be released from Red Rose Publishing on the 5th of March. This is the Gothic Romance.
 
In August, the sequel to Heartsong, this one called Battlesong, will be released. No cover yet, but I'll give you a hint. It's called Battlesong because the hero and the heroine are willing to do battle  - with each other. If you've read Heartsong, then you will recognize the hero of Battlesong. He's the youngest Brother of Heartsong.
 
And I'd be very remise if I didn't mention the fact I'm appearing in a workshop at the Gulf Coast Chapter RWA in March, talking about e-publishing, why I chose it and why I think this is the future of books.
 
Where can readers find you on the web?
 
I have a web site and a blog. I manage to blog about once a week at www.allisonknjight.blogspot.com and it's frequently about my ongoing battles with my computer or some of the strange happenings in my life. And believe me, things are not quiet around here.  My web site is www.AllisonKnight.com
 
If you were able to meet any celebrity and spend one day with them, who would you choose and what would you do?
 
This will shock a lot of people, but what most people thing of when you say celebrities don't impress me. If I was given an opportunity to meet a famous person, I choose someone from the operatic world. Placido Damingo comes to mind. I grew up with classical music and my dad trained to sing opera. So people in that profession would be the people  I'd like to meet.

****

The Haunting at Hastings Hall by Allison Knight.
Coming to Red Rose Publishing on March 5th
www.redrosepublishing.com
 
Ohio, January 1878
 
     It was a perfect day for a funeral. The gray sky heralded an approaching winter storm as cold wind whistled through the elm trees marking the entrance to the family plot. Icy snow flakes began to fall over the dirt and onto the pine box as Aunt Pheobe’s body was lowered into the ground beside the man who had made her life miserable for over twenty years.
     I stood by the carriage, trying to hold my tears at bay and ignore my step-cousins who ringed the mound of dirt. I saw not a single sign of grief on any of their faces. They were so much like their father.
     I didn’t miss the gleam of satisfaction on Opal’s face, Aunt Phoebe’s oldest daughter, as she glanced my way. I looked at Tom Harrow, now Opal’s husband. He had once been the man of my dreams but Opal had somehow learned I thought my heart entwined with his. It was not to be. A confirmed spinster at two and thirty. Opal made a play for him, securing her future with my pain. Or so I thought at the time.
     Now, I felt nothing for Tom except sympathy. The poor man looked much like a whipped dog, as he stood behind Opal, their two small daughters hanging on to his trousers.
     I turned my attention to Grace, newly married despite her advanced age of five and thirty but married to a man twice her age. She was so obviously pleased with herself, repeatedly stroking the velvet cloak and matching dress, a smile on her face. She was smiling as they laid her own step-mother to rest! How very callous.
     I glanced at the last of Aunt Phoebe’s stepchildren. Clearance at least carried a somber expression, but his wife paid no mind to the cleric who held his tattered bible and read from the psalms. She was conversing with everyone, those to her side, those behind.
    Oh, Aunt Phoebe, am I the only one who will miss you and your wise ways?"
     My uncle’s influence marked this group of ingrates. But Aunt Phoebe had been like a mother to me after my own mother had died of consumption. They took me in, despite my uncle’s objections and over the years, she had saved me countless times from the mean pranks of his children who wanted me gone from their home at any cost. Now the dear lady was gone and I had to face the world on my own.
     I waited until the family had left the grave site and climbed into my borrowed carriage. I shivered thinking about the days before me.
     First I’d have to endure the meals at Hastings Hall, before I could pack my things and arrange to leave the house that had been my home for these past sixteen years.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Meet Author Mychael Black


Tell us about your latest book/upcoming releases. Is it part of a series and if so, can we read it as a standalone or do we need to read the others in the series first?

My latest release is The Lost Son, and it’s book 1 in the Secrets of Socendor series. It was previously published with another publisher, but I expanded and revised it for Samhain. It’s no secret that fantasy is my first literary love, and The Lost Son is my first full foray into the genre. It just happens to include gay men as the heroes.


What makes a good book to you? Story? Characters? Exotic locations?

All of the above, really. Though, if I HAD to pick one, I’d have to say characters. I have to feel for the characters in order to keep reading.

What's your favorite pizza toppings?

Hm, well, Papa John’s Pizza has this AWESOME BBQ Chicken & Bacon pizza that’s to die for.

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done to one of your characters?

LOL Killed him. Of course, he’s an angel, so he came back, but at the time, it was absolute HELL.

Which of your books contains the sexiest love scene?

Oh, wow. That’s a tough one. I’m quite partial to the scene in The Lost Son where Micheil and Kalen do it on the back of Micheil’s horse en-route to the elven lands.
  
Which of your covers is your favorite?

The Lost Son. I LOVE the cover and it perfectly conveys the story and characters.

Which of your books was the easiest to write? The hardest?

Probably The Prince’s Angel (TPA 1) with Shayne Carmichael. It was our first book and we wrote all 90k+ words in a month. Of course, we/I haven’t even *touched* that record since. LOL The hardest, too many, to be honest. My muse has been temperamental lately.

What is coming in 2010 from you?

Let’s see… Spirits of Abaddon: Sanctified (book 2), Blood & Fire 3 (both with Changeling); my Chaser series, Hearth & Home, in a single volume/ebook (Torquere); a Spice It Up story for Torquere using Vervain as the herb. There’s no telling what else. LOL

Where can readers find you on the web?


If you could meet any character from any book, who would it be, what would you do and why?

Dain Lavrans or Mychael ab Arawn. Dain is the hero in The Chalice and the Blade, and Mychael is the hero in Dream Stone. They are books 1 and 2 (respectively) in Glenna McReynold’s medieval romance trilogy. (Book 3 is Prince of Time.) And yes, that’s where I came up with the name ‘Mychael’ for my pen name. LOL

What would I do? *grins*

As for why… I read those books years ago, and those two heroes have held strong places in my heart since.


The Lost Son
Secrets of Socendor, Book 1
Mychael Black
Samhain Publishing

http://samhainpublishing.com/romance/the-lost-son

One warrior, one sorcerer, and a legacy that will change their lives forever…

In the world of Socendor, humans are forbidden from using magic and elves keep their distance.

Kalen Ysindroc has risen far from his humble beginnings as a blacksmith’s adopted son. Now the king’s general, he investigates reports of magic-wielding half-human, half-elven lithings sighted along the kingdom’s borders. It would be a lonely life, if not for the company of his best friend and long-time elven lover, Micheil Theirauf, the king’s sorcerer.

An attempt on Kalen’s life makes it clear to Micheil that there’s more afoot than random breaks in the land’s defenses. His lover is plagued by dreams no human should endure, and Micheil’s probe into Kalen’s subconscious reveals a past neither of them expected. And a future Kalen can’t escape.

Suddenly, everything Kalen never knew about his life is laid bare. A father possessed of terrible magical power. A half-brother who could be the family Kalen never had—or the catalyst that will rip Micheil out of his life forever…

This title was previously published but has been revised.

***

EXCERPT:

Micheil watched Kalen’s chest rise and fall with every breath. Kalen slept deeply, possibly already dreaming. Micheil smiled. Perhaps this would be easier than he had expected. He moved closer to Kalen and felt himself settle within the general’s mind. Snippets of Kalen’s dream came to Micheil then.

Fire. And smoke. Deep crimson red. The brilliance of a newly struck fire. And death.

“From the depths of the earth and the sea,

From the endless skies and the mists of time,

I call thee, beasts of fire…”

An unseen force threw Micheil to the ground. When he rolled over, the sight that greeted him nearly stopped his heart.

Kalen stood on a hilltop, his arms raised to the swirling forms above him. In and out of the voluminous clouds, great beasts flew. Fiery plumes of red and orange surrounded the behemoths, and their obsidian scales glimmered in the silver moonlight as it cascaded down onto the valleys and hills below.

Then Kalen turned. The green depths of his eyes blazed with an internal fire as his gaze settled on Micheil.

“You are in danger,” Micheil warned after several moments of silence.

“Aye,” Kalen said with a slow nod. “As are you. You are mine. And for that very reason, you will be hunted.”

Micheil sat bolt upright in his bed. Sweat beaded on his skin and trickled slowly over his face. The chill of the room pierced him, yet it did nothing to cool the fire within. Kalen’s fire. But how? Kalen Ysindroc had no such magic within him.

“Sweet Malin, save us.”

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Of Puppies and Publishing

For those of you following my blog or social networks, you know that in less than a month The Vampire Hunters will be published. It’s an exciting time. Reading the proofs and seeing how my book will look when published. Working with the publisher on drafting the cover art for the book, and anxiously waiting to see the final result. Enjoying the sense of anticipation of having a dream come true.

Coming to the grips with the harsh reality that getting published was the easy part.

The entire experience reminds me of when my school friend wanted nothing more than a puppy for his birthday.  He begged and pleaded, promised and cajoled, and hoped against hope. And on his birthday, he finally received his four-legged friend with those big brown eyes looking up longingly at him. He had finally obtained what he dreamed of for so long.

That’s when he realized there’s a lot of responsibility that goes along with that puppy. The puppy whined all night. It needed to be walked. It needed to be trained. In order to ensure that puppy grew up to be a strong, healthy dog and to live a long time, he needed to provide him with constant care and attention.

The same can be said about your writing career.

When you receive a copy of your first book in the mail, you feel as if your dream has come true. All those seemingly endless hours spent in front of the keyboard, all those nights and weekends spent away from family and friends, seemed to have finally paid off. Slowly that initial euphoria wears off and you realize that a lot of care and feeding is required if you want that first book to grow into a full-fledged writing career.

The day I signed my first contract with Shadowfire Press was one of the most exciting of my life. After the euphoria subsided, however, I realized I had a lot of work to do if I wanted to make that book a success. The first thing I did was start searching the Internet for a domain name so I could set up my website, which was a scary process for someone as computer illiterate as myself. And who knew there were so many Scott M. Bakers out there who had already scoffed the best domain names. Then I created a blog. Feeling very confident in my abilities by this time, I opted to establish a presence on the social networking sites. My eyes nearly popped out of my head when I saw just how many SNSs there were. So I opted for the basics – Facebook, My Space, and Twitter. All I can say is, thank God for Ping.

That still wasn’t enough. I had to make people want to come looking for me. So I go involved in a couple of forums, though due to limited time constraints the only one I frequent any more is the Horror Mall Forum, and even then I’m not on anywhere near as much as I would like. The same holds true for guest blogging. I’ve had offers to write for some other blogs, but have reluctantly turned down those invitations because of time constraints. It’s a shame I can’t get more involved, but as of now I’ve spent nearly as much time marketing myself and The Vampire Hunters as I did writing the book.

Right now I’m setting up newspapers and other vampire-related websites to review and/or publicize my book after it’s published.

So for those authors out there aspiring to get their books published or just beginning the process, the road ahead is long and hard. But if you love what you do and writing is in your blood, this is actually a labor of love. Just like raising a pet.

And yes, the puppy lived a long and happy life. I hope ten years from now I can say the same thing about my writing career.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to feed my Twitter.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Getting to know Author Christine McKay


I’m a pretty demanding reader. I want heart-stopping action, authentic characters, well-rounded villains, and tear-jerking romance. I want to learn and I want anything that is written as a fact to really be a fact (or to be so farfetched I know it can’t possibly be a fact). A bay horse, for instance, better be brown with black points and not palomino, chestnut, pinto or something in between, though if it’s a unicorn, it’s your call as to what is an acceptable color. Get my point? If the hero or heroine is shooting a gun of some sort, unless it’s a prototype, you better count your casings ‘cause I know how many most clips can hold (and if I don’t, one of the men in my life does).

After studying those demands, you can envision a writer developing socially unfriendly stress habits  trying to meet them.

Luckily or unluckily I write. A lot. Nonfiction. Technical documents. Fiction…and more specifically romance.  Odd combination? You wouldn’t be the first to tell me such. And  I hold myself to those same high standards I demand from my favorite writers.  Do I always succeed? Probably not (but I do have a lot of nitpicky fact checkers verifying my work before I submit a piece). Do I try? 100%.

One of my fact checkers, however, has the attention span and reading pace of a seven year old. If the story becomes bogged down, he lets me know. Imagine my surprise when my largest (to this date) completed work of 120,000+ words, The Genesis Clock, not only captured his attention, but held him  the entire ride and inspired him to ask for a sequel when it was finished. Since he was reading the copy as I was writing it, this made me want to swiftly bonk him on the head with a ream of paper.

So what’s this “riveting” paper-wasting behemoth about? First off, it’s from Cerridwen Press and thus an e-book, at least at this time. Secondly, while I hope it captures other people’s attention, there’s always the possibility you’ll pick it up and later wished you’d have opted for a more fulfilling but cheesy SyFy flick (and dear God, if that’s the case, please don’t tell me ‘cause I’d like to think my heroines and villains are a little less paper-cut).

Let’s start with the monsters: dragons, leviathan, angry goddesses, and most of the men in the heroine’s life thus far. Add a couple secret societies, one who wants to use Evie (the heroine) and one who wants to see her dead. Throw in some world travel. Naj Tunich, Easter Island, the Alpilles anyone? Add the requisite plane, horseback, and boat travel.  Don’t forget the evil dude with the cash who knows how to manipulate the heroine and the torn hero, in love with but sent to kill the aforementioned heroine. Enough angst and action for you?  I hope so.

While The Genesis Clock will be my most recent release (available February 25th at www.jasminejade.com), I do have other short stories and novels to my credit. See my website, www.ChristineMcKay.com for details. Judging from what’s there, I have a fetish for Wiccans, magic, dragons, light kink, and contemporary sexually uninhibited characters. It’s frustrating to try to pin me to one genre, though in whatever I write, romance is the unifying theme. My publishers include: Harlequin Spice, Samhain Publishing, Champagne Books, Carnal Passions, Ellora’s Cave and its tamer division, Cerridwen Press.

Before  you become too bored with this post, I want to mention my 2nd latest release, Loch Dragon’s Lady, a Harlequin Spice Brief available now at www.eharlequin.com. Has the glut of vampire, werewolf, and zombie stories finally gotten to you? Love the paranormal world, but want something fresh? Okay, so dragons might not be totally fresh but I’m willing to bet you haven’t read anything set in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. And yes, the place does exist. Check out National Geographic’s pictorial spread: http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2010/01/hebrides/warren-text/2. and tell me those photos don’t pique your interest. Now picture a kilt-garbed , shape-shifting  Scottish hunk of a dragon man inhabiting one of the ruins. All I can say is “yum.” Sign me up for that Loch Ness monster hunting trip.

Speaking of trips, this year I’m planning on attending the Romantic Times convention in Columbus, OH, as well as the National Romance Writer’s conference in Nashville, TN, and Ellora’s Cave’s Romanticon, also in Ohio. So if you’d like to meet the insanity behind the keyboard, get my autograph, or buy me a drink (don’t I wish!), look for me in those locations. In lieu of that, you might also find me strutting my stuff (and about 30 lbs or 12 yards of fabric-hogging skirts) at the Bristol Renaissance faire.


 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

WRITERS WRITE... WRITING PARTNERS FEUD



THE CLICHÉ TOUCHÉ
By: Angelica Hart and Zi


Z: All work and no play, makes Jack a dull boy. (Zi drank from his Big Dog mug, placed it on the desk, looked at it, looked at Angelica) Woof!
A: All's fair in love and war. Work can be war. Work. (She wagged that finger much like a dog did its tail... Zi would have preferred the wag of the tail... the dog's tail)
Z: So you are a proponent of all's well that ends well? (Avoiding the return to writing using diversion tactics of a great military mind he tried to engage her in conversation)
A: Attitude is determined by attitude. (Wicked eyes ripped from her desk to his, shredding dust moats)
Z: (Zi thought... poor little moats... mean Angelica... what bit her) So you want an arm and a leg? (Considering he felt she was bit by it-is-time-to-be-serious bug... and the bite had swollen enflamed ugly... so ugly Zi wanted to flee fearing a volcanic eruption of whipping and scolding... and get a witch doctor to exorcise her demons)
A: Oh, that's an oldie but goodie.
Z: And I guess that puts another nail in my coffin? (He gazed wistfully out the window and looked for the excuse to shoot hoops in the backyard) Dog is sneaking under the fence... gotta go!

The afore was a cliché touché, both a debate over and with clichés. We constantly battle about their usage and have taken the position that if we notice them we change them. Now, having said that we do use clichés in dialog. People speak that way.

"Hey, babe, you are dressed to the nines." Using a twirling finger he asked for her to spin.
"This old thing." She smiled touched by his flattery, she knowing she spent hours choosing just for him.
"Fits like a glove." Ronald wanted to infest her with his thoughts of sensuality, they being spirited by that very tight dress.
"Makes me look flat as a pancake." She knew he was a man who loved a full décolleté and wore that piece of lingerie that pushed up and together, her gift to him.
"You are fine and dandy." As he said those words, somewhere deep within he hoped he had moved her closer to that place where her panties would spontaneously fall to her ankles.

A: That scene is total crap.
Z: Not enough passion? (His eyes turned hurt puppy-doggish)
A: Misused clichés. (She had the damn-the-torpedoes glare)
Z: How's the passion? (He pointed to one sentence)
A: Lost to the clichés. (There it was, the snap of the whip)
Z: Ouch! And I wanted to get Ronald a girlfriend with benefits. (Zi, a man's man, felt he failed his bud and returned to the keyboard to find those benefits for him)

The afore may show that just because a cliché is a part of people's dialog it may not work to facilitate the intention of the work.

But clichés can be fun.

Z: The final line you wrote read, knee-high to a grasshopper, do you really want to write that? (Zi had that holier than thou 'tude... no not whitewashed in meanness but caked with that I-know-something-you-don't-know tone)
A. Sure. (That sure was a volley back sure... we have all done those... she waiting for more information)
Z. Do you really want to write that? I’ll ask you once more, do you really want to write that, and I shall add, the cliché leaves the impression of one providing oral favors to an insect. Do you really want to use the expression?
A: Nooooooooooooooooo. (The white of her eyes appeared around her irises)
Z: Got to hurry and change it. (He typed using huge hand strokes) Now, we are using, having ants in their pants. (There are some grins that are more than sniggers and have taken smirk to a devilish place... Zi so grinned)
A: Naughty ants? (She laughed... though Angelica was mind picturing them doing the horizontal... oh my goodness she felt the need to stop being a mind voyeur and shook her head as if flinging the naughty asunder)
Z: Sounds like we are writing insect erotica. (This is where he'd tee-hee but Zi never tee-heed)
A: Everyone is busy as a bee. (Another volley of ill-begotten thoughts)
Z: Happy as a bug in the rug. (And Zi knew exactly what he meant by rug)
A: Ok... ok... cliché touché must end. (She raised her hands... no not in that way to indicate she had to go potty... though she did raise one finger... peecular?)
Z: Sounds like I opened a can of worms. (Worms... was that a metaphor... probably)
A: Enough! (What did Zi mean when he said can of... what this... no... not a party... ick!)
Z: The early bird gets the worm... and what does that duck do with it? (At this point Zi knew he was tormenting and loved that he could)
A: I don't want to know. (Though she knew what she wanted the duck to do and made up a poem)
Z: Think fall through the cracks... huh!! (Bounces his well embrowness)
A: Stop!
Z: Want me to deep-six the clichés?
A: Yes!
Z: Don't count your chickens before they are hatched.

We believe that our job is know when and when not to cliché. We hope we don't rock the boat but hit the ball out of the park.

The question is, do clichés have value?


We'd love to hear from anyone interested in what we do. Anyone who emails us at angelicahartandzi@yahoo.com and leaves an s-mail address, we will send you a gift and add you to any future mailings.


Angelica Hart and Zi
Killer Dolls ~ September 2009
Snake Dance ~ February 2010
Chasing Gravitas ~ July 2010
Champagne Books
angelicahartandzi.com

KILLER DOLLS and SNAKE DANCE IS AVAILABLE








Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Meet author Victoria Roder



Were you an avid reader as a child? What type of books did you enjoy reading?
     Sounds messed up, but I did a lot of babysitting and would read Stephen King after the kids were all tucked in, and the house was quiet, except for evening sounds.  At least I attempted to reassure myself it was just creaking boards and the howling wind.   

Tell us a bit about your latest book, and what inspired you to write such a story.
           
Bolt Action releases in April 2010 from www.champagnebooks.com Secrets of the past, murder, mystery, revenge, deception, sexual tension, and the “State Quarter Killer”; Bolt Action offers it all.  In my Action Thriller, Bolt Action, Detective Leslie Bolt is a tough talking, gun hording, motorcycle riding investigator with as much insecurity as the rest of us.  After a childhood of abuse suffered at the hands of her father, Leslie stashes a collection of pistols, revolvers, and even keeps a Browning A-Bolt Stalker Rifle in her broom closet.  She is stand-offish and down right rude.  Having to work a serial murder case with her handsome ex-lover Detective Lance Kestler doesn’t improve her disposition.  The “State Quarter Killer” is selecting victims that appear to have nothing in common except for the State Quarter placed under their lifeless bodies.  When her sister goes missing the question rises; will Detective Bolt capture the serial killer before her sister is the next victim?  
The idea of Bolt Action started with the characters, Detective Leslie Bolt and her sister Tasha.  My personal story of adoption was published in the anthology entitled A Cup of Comfort for Adoptive Families, Adams Media 2009.  My story entitled Why I Believe in Angels is the account of how I came to live with my current family at the age of seven.  With their acceptance and support, they helped me become who I am today.  That publication has inspired many people to share their own stories of adoption with me.  Heartfelt tales told through the eyes of parents and also from the children that were adopted.  I am sorry to report I also heard a few troubled stories of adoption, and one comment remained in my thoughts and stalked me.  That sole comment became the disposition for the sisters in my novel, Bolt Action.


How would you describe your creative process while writing this book?
Was it stream-of-consciousness writing, or did you first write an outline?
     I don’t outline, so I guess I’m a pantser and I wing it.  I will have an idea and a character in mind.  The characters end up taking the story line over, so it is also a surprise to me how the story will unfold and conclude.     

Did your book require a lot of research?
    
For BOLT ACTION I researched police procedure, domestic abuse statistics and procedures, autopsy information, breast cancer statistics, guns, and serial killers. 

If you could have any vice without repercussions, what would it be?  Eating meat and potatoes. 

If you could have been the servant to any famous person in history, who would that be and why?
     Pick me, pick me!  I’d love to have been working and not noticed in the white house during JFK’s reign.  Conspiracy, the mafia, the CIA, Castro, those were some interesting troubled times.  There is nothing new under the sun…you can’t make that stuff up.  

What so you see for the future of publishing and ebooks? Are ebooks the wave of the future?
     I believe ebooks are economically and environmentally friendly and are here to stay.  I just hope hard working authors get their due. 

Which of your characters do you love/hate/fear/pity the most and why?
     I have a spot in my heart for Detective Leslie Bolt.  I can understand her hard, kick ass, outer shell and the chip on her shoulder, but she’s a good person and wants to reach out without knowing how.  I feel pain and pity for her sister Tasha because she acts happy on the outside, but she is bitter and superficial.  Life can be hard, but we choose our positive or negative attitude.    

Do you get along with your muse? What do you do to placate her when she refuses to inspire you?
     I get much more sleep now that I listen to my muse and write what she wants.  Sometimes while writing my first novel from www.asylettpress.com The Dream House Visions And Nightmares I would edit things the next day and never remember writing them.  When my muse refuses to inspire me I take her for a motorcycle ride.  Too bad Wisconsin winters are so long.

Do you have another book in the works? Would you like to tell readers about your current or future projects?  I’m in the process of submitting The Haunting of Ingersull Penitentiary. 

With an inheritance from her parent’s estate, Hailey Price is remodeling a portion of the former Ingersull Penitentiary into a bed and breakfast, and banquet hall.  The guests of the former prison currently known as The Big House Inn discover that the residual haunts are the least of the frightening occurrences inside the bed and breakfast.  Time alone in a dismal abandoned penitentiary could play tricks on a person’s psyche, but a wandering Ouija Board, a possessed electric chair, and blood spewing out of a wall threatens to push Hailey Price over the edge.   The guests will check in at their own risk, but will they ever check out?  Can Hailey overcome the haunting of her own past in order to find the strength to battle this evil force and save the guests?  


Have you ever experience weird cravings while you write? If so, what kind?  Coffee and fat free fudge sickles. 

What is the worst, best, most embarrassing or funniest situation your writing career has put you in?  The best thing that happened…when I signed up for facebook I stumbled across a group my son Josh was setting up to support and promote me called, For Mom.  He never said a word about it.  He sent an email to all his friends to join my group and they did! 
 
Where can readers find you on the web?





Is the “State Quarter Killer” taunting police?  In charge of the case, Detective Bolt’s apartment is tossed and her twin sister is missing, which raises the question was the intended target Detective Leslie Bolt?  Has her irresponsible sister just run off again, or will Detective Bolt need to solve the “State Quarter Case” before her sister is the next victim?  Here is an excerpt from Bolt Action

Bolt Action, April 210
Champagne Books.  www.champagnebooks.com

One
Lying in the dark shadows of my bedroom, I startled at a slamming sound. Every hair on my arms crystallized as I grappled under the pillow for my Ruger Blackhawk .357 and flashlight. Baby, my cat, startled to near death, screeched and ran from the bed. My heart lurched in my chest. In the silence of the night, the sound of the Ruger cocking ricocheted off the walls.
In an attempt to become undetectable in the darkness, I inhaled the slowest breaths possible without passing out. Convinced someone observed, perhaps studied, my every movement, I summoned my courage with a prayer.
I flipped the flashlight on and scanned my bedroom. For the third time this week, nothing, no one present.
To ease my mind, I proceeded through my duplex with stealth-like movements, as if I were responding to an armed intruder call. Keeping my wrists crossed with my Ruger in my right hand and the flashlight in my left, I crept from one room to another, turning on every light available. With my duplex lit up like a landing strip, I positioned the flashlight on my oak end table. Confident the twelve and a half inch barrel of my .357 protected me, I jerked open every closet door, hoping someone waited inside to be shot. I believed an apprehended suspect might be my chance at sanity, putting to rest the repetitive noises and sensation of being watched.
With a predator like approach toward the bathroom, I noticed the shower curtain stirring. My pulse throbbed in my esophagus, threatening to cut off my air supply. Creeping into my nineteen-fifties Pepto Bismol pink bathroom, with a trembling hand I grasped and jerked open the curtain. The sound of the rings scraping against the rod made a deafening screech.
Still nothing.
Succumbing to mental exhaustion, I leaned my head against the bathroom door.
“Shit.” In the silence, the sound of my own voice startled me. I couldn’t keep going like this night after night.
A slamming noise vibrated between the duplexes. Sprinting to the kitchen, I set the flashlight on the counter and pressed my face against the kitchen window.    I cupped my left hand around my eyes to peer into the driveway. I surveyed the driveway I shared with my neighbor Mark, but I couldn’t detect his car.
If he’s gone, where is the noise coming from?
I thought of one place I hadn’t checked. The thought of entering the moldy, reeking storage area made my stomach contents curdle like cottage cheese. With my desire to find the source of the noises superseding my fear of dark, damp spaces, I tucked the Ruger in the waistband of my drawstring sleep pants.
Out of my collection of weapons that I have stashed around my apartment, I choose my Browning A-Bolt Stainless Stalker rifle from behind the mop in the broom closet. I headed in the direction of the enclosed storage area. Flipping on the porch light in hopes of frightening an intruder, I exited my front door. As I reached the bottom of the wooden steps, I could detect an outline of a person in front of the shadowed storage area door.  Maleat least six feet tall.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Chatting with author Eve Summers


SWEET OR SPICY?


Do you like your romance sweet or spicy? Eve Summers, published by Red Rose Publishing, offers a choice of both. Today, we will talk about her latest 'sweet' offering, Like A Virgin. This short e-book tells the story of Aurora, a school teacher so bored with her everyday personna that she chooses to spice up her avatar for an online dating site. But when the man of her dreams suggests a face-to-face date, Aurora shies away from skydiving....

EXCERPT:

The limousine --gosh, a limousine! -- was already waiting, door open. Aurora slipped in with the ease of a true Bond girl and looked at her Dream Mate.

The rich brown skin was mesmerizing against the creamy leather of the seats. His shoulders looked broader than in the photos, his eyes naughtier, the inside of his masculine lips vulnerably pink and totally irresistible.

"Hello there, stranger."

Aurora couldn't get a word out. Stop talking and kiss me already, her mind suddenly capable of operating on only one track.

He didn't kiss her. But when he held out a champagne glass to her, his triceps moved like a living sculpture under the thin material of his evening shirt and Aurora felt the primordial reaction radiate from her nipples all the way down.

Kiss me, damn it!

He tapped on the glass separating them from the driver and the limo eased into a gentle roll. "Before this goes any further, I have a confession to make," he said.

Him, too. Aurora raised a single eyebrow and twisted her face in simulated shock. She found her voice. "Oh no. Don't tell me. Your other car is not a Ferrari?"

He flashed his teeth, so white they almost looked blue in their dark setting. "As it happens, one of my other cars is a Ferrari. But, here goes: I don't do skydiving. That was just to impress you."

CONTEST!!!

Eve Summers is a Featured Contest Author with Coffee Times Romance for the entire month of February 2010. Please visit the contest page (http://www.coffeetimeromance.com/ContestPage.html) and scroll down to (or Find) the Eve Summers entry and enter the contest. If you're not sure of the answers, just email me!

BUY LINK for Like A Virgin: http://redrosepublishing.com/bookstore/product_info.php?manufacturers_id=155&products_id=636

URL for Cover: http://yewalus.kiwiwebhost.net.nz/images/LikeAVirgin%20tiny.jpg

Yvonne Eve Walus writing as Eve Summers
Do _you_ like cocktails?

Fiji on Fire, Fiji on Ice
http://redrosepublishing.com/bookstore/product_info.php?products_id=363

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Why Horror?

My apologies for not blogging the past few weeks. Recently my life has been a perfect storm of distractions. Between new car hunting, all the work necessary in preparation for getting the first novel published, and shoveling out from Snowmeggedon (the name given to the three blizzards that pummeled northern Virginia in less than two weeks, dropping almost six feet of snow on us), I’ve been too preoccupied to think much about blogs. That’s all behind me now, so it’s back to the writing trenches.

This weekend saw the premier of the much anticipated re-imaging of the Universal classic The Wolfman. The movie has received plenty of publicity, not only in fan magazines and horror blogs, but even within the more traditional entertainment media that normally shuns such movies. The Wolfman follows on the heels of Zombieland, another horror movie that received a lot of mainstream attention.

Not that I’m complaining. For Monster Kids like myself, the more mainstream horror becomes in Hollywood and the publishing industry, the more fare I have to sink my teeth into. And, on a more mercenary level, the more opportunities I have to exploit the market. I happen to be fortunate that I’m setting out on a career in this genre at a time of national angst, which has always been a breeding ground for a resurgence of horror-related entertainment.

But why is horror so popular during troubled times?

Because horror provides an escapism that most of us crave, especially when our daily lives become almost as scary as fiction. Horror is more complicated than the quintessential battle between good and evil. It doesn’t matter whether the battle is between David and Goliath, Van Helsing and Dracula, sleepless teenagers and Freddy Krueger, or mankind and hordes of the living dead. Sure, the violence, gore, and fright value of today’s horror is much more intense than it was sixty years ago, but I attribute that to the more frightening times we live in. (Let’s face it. Watching Jack Pierce’s Frankenstein monster, with his square forehead and bolts in his neck, rampage through a village doesn’t hold the same fear factor for us as it did for our grandparents.)

Every day we turn on the news and are bombarded by an endless litany of reports on the war on terror. Anthrax-laced letters. Shoe bombers. Underwear bombers. So far America has been lucky in that we have not suffered a major terrorist attack on our home soil on the scale of 11 September. But we know the threat still lurks out there in the shadows, like some creature of the night waiting for its next victim. That’s why we can relate to the townsfolk of Barrow in 30 Days of Night, or the survivors holed up in a mall in Dawn of the Dead. The enemy is relentless and will not stop until they’re dead or we are. The odds are weighted heavily against us. However, as long as we fight the good fight, we known we’ll prevail, or at the very least survive the nightmare, which sometimes is the best we can hope for.

If the top story isn’t the on-going war, then it dwells on the seemingly endless economic woes facing us. Home foreclosures. The wiping out of retirement portfolios. Double digit unemployment. Multi-trillion deficits that we’ll eventually have to pay for. Shit. Sometimes the reality is scarier than the fantasy. There are many of us who would like nothing better than to grab a pitchfork and hunt down those who have economically terrorized our lives and, in too many cases, destroyed our future. Thankfully, most Americans are decent and law-abiding, and would never take matters into their own hands in such a manner. So fictional monsters serve as convenient displacements for the Bernie Madoffs of the world.

While the Saw movies don’t fall into the traditional horror category, they also feed off of the sense of helplessness many of us face, as well as our desire for justice. Many of us can relate to Jigsaw’s players who are placed in life altering situations by a power beyond our control and are forced to make difficult decisions that negatively and disastrously impact our lives? I doubt many people felt sympathy for the drug addict, the drunk driver who killed a child, or the rapist who became the machination of one of Jigsaw’s games. These are the people who flaunt the norms of society, show no regard to the rest of us, and cause pain and suffering. We may not concur with how Jigsaw administers his justice, but there’s a certain perverse satisfaction when those who leech on society pay for their crimes. In Saw VI, in which the game players were all members of an insurance company that denied its clients access to proper health care in order to keep the company’s profit margin high, I know I took a sadistic glee in watching those who picked who among their clients lived or died now making those same choices with their own lives.

Horror has always had its place in our culture, both as a form of entertainment and as an escape valve. It allows us to vent the fears and frustrations haunting our daily lives against the monsters on the screen, the ones that can be easily destroyed. It also teaches us that when we hear that bump in the night, it’s okay to be afraid as long as fear doesn’t stop us from grabbing the baseball bat by the nightstand and facing whatever made that bump.

(I know that for every example cited in this blog to state my case, there are half a dozen examples that could be used to refute my point. Please feel free to comment and express your opinions. But bear in mind that this is merely my somewhat simplistic mental musings about the relationship between real and fictional horror and not a doctoral thesis.)

Getting to know author Jeanne St. James


Did you always want to become a writer?


As long as I can remember, I’ve loved to write. I don’t remember when I decided that I wanted to become published.

What is the most and the least interesting fact about writing?

The most interesting, in my opinion, is that writing is NOT as easy as some people think. I love when someone finds out that I write and they say “Oh, I want to write a memoir.” Really? You better make sure your life is really, really, really interesting! The least interesting fact is that once you are contracted there is still a lot of work to be done: editing, proofing, revisions, not to mention promoting. The work isn’t done when you write “the end.”

How did you celebrate your first release?

I really didn’t. I started working on my second and third right away. Once I released I could be published I was determined to go full speed ahead. I ended up having three contracts within a six month period, and then those three books came out within 5 months of each other.

Do you prefer stand-alone books or series?

To write, I prefer stand-alone, though I have a three book series about three small town cops who are brothers. That’s what I’m going to be working on coming up. To read, I like both. For example, I love Hamilton’s Anita Blake series. But I don’t have a lot of time to read – so I’m lucky if I get through one book in a couple month period.

If you could change places with one character from your books, who would it be and why?

I would have to say my heroine, Quinn, from Double Dare (an interracial ménage a trois with Loose Id). The reason? Well, *blushing* she gets to enjoy the love and attention of two gorgeous, well-built, successful men… at the same time. Sounds heavenly, doesn’t it?

If you could go back to any time period, which one would it be and why?

I think I’d like to stay in this time period, just be a little younger. I really enjoy the technologies that we have and would miss not having them.

You got to meet a mythical creature/person, who would you choose to meet and why?

Batman. He’s so hot and sexy! And he’s a hero: a true alpha male.

Where can readers find you on the web?

My website: http://www.jeannestjames.com/

My blog: http://jeannestjames.blogspot.com/

My Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/jeannestjames

My MySpace page: http://www.Myspace.com/jeannestjames

My Twitter page: http://www.twitter.com/jeannestjames

That’s just to name a few places!

What is coming in 2010 that you want to tease the readers on?

I don’t really have anything planned right now. I have a few projects that I need to work on. But I just had Double Dare release on January 5th at Loose Id. And before that, Banged Up released at Liquid Silver Books in September. Rip Cord, my m/m erotic novella, released in November and hit the bestselling charts at Phaze and All Romance Ebooks immediately. I have been very busy promoting those releases. So right now I need to get my butt settled in the chair and write something else or finish my started manuscripts.



Sneak peek into Double Dare:

When Logan glanced up again, he saw a pink vision stalking toward him, and he sat up straighter. Shit, the cause of his earlier hard-on was coming his way.


She looked determined, and she still had a grip around her glass like it was a lifeline.

She stopped directly in front of him and put one hand on her hip.

“Are you Logan Reed?”

Oh, shit. “Yes?”

“You don’t know for sure?”

“Oh, I’m sure.”

“Are you fucking anybody right now?”

“Right this minute?” He glanced around to see if anyone else was hearing this surreal conversation. Luckily no one was paying attention.

“No. Do you have anyone who is going to get mad if I ask you to dance?”

“Uh. No.” Well, hell, that was a unique way of asking someone to dance.

She placed her drink on the table and he asked, “Is that still your second one?”

“No, third.”

“I was afraid of that.”

She grabbed his hand and pulled, but he was too heavy for her to lift, so he unfolded himself from the chair to accommodate her.

“Are you asking me to dance?”

“You have a problem with that?”

“Not at all.” He interlaced his fingers with hers and led her to a corner of the dance floor. Luckily for him, the D.J. had turned the lights down and was playing a series of slow tunes. Ones he could dance to. There was no way he was doing the chicken dance or line dancing. He had his limits.

As the slow, wailing tune blared through the large speakers, Logan slid his palms around her waist, his splayed fingers coming to rest at the small of her back. The fabric of her dress felt terrible, and he didn’t know why women wore shit like that and suffered. The dress certainly wasn’t flattering.

But it wasn’t the outer package that mattered to Logan, it was the prize he found inside when it was unwrapped.

He stepped in a little closer and pulled her hips closer to his. He swore he heard a little gasp. He smiled into her over-styled, dark blonde hair and nuzzled it. Underneath all the hairspray, he caught a scent of wildflowers. It smelled nice.

“What’s your name?” he murmured into her hair.

“What?” She turned her head a bit, and she ended up nuzzling his neck. Her lips, the shape of which reminded him of an archer’s bow, were warm and soft, and he could detect the fruity scent of the Slammers on her breath.

She was average height for a woman, which made her a bit shorter than him, so he had to lean down a bit to place his lips against her ear.

“What’s your name?”

He felt the shiver of her body against him, so he traced the delicate shell of her ear with the tip of his tongue. The touch was light enough, but she unmistakably felt it. In response, she arched her back slightly, pressing her hips into his.
Buy Link: http://www.loose-id.com/Double-Dare.aspx

WRITERS WRITE... WRITING PARTNERS FEUD ~ EVEN AN ARMADILLO NEEDS LOVE

  The singular most important emotion a human spirit craves is to be loved. It seeks it out. It needs it. It craves it. Walk into an...