Progress always involves risks. You can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first. ~Frederick B. Wilcox
Yes, I’m having one of those days with doubt. I’ve turned in my contracted books and am out of contract. This means…time to go out on proposal, which is both an exciting and frightening time. I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but the publishing industry is in a bit of a flux.
I golfed last week for the first time in about five years–and I was very doubtful before. But hey…I guess it all comes back. While I wasn’t a star by any means, I did all right. Sure, my slice returned, but then I remembered how to deal with it.
Publishing is like golfing. You need the right equipment, a good attitude, and tools to deal with that slice. A stiff drink doesn’t hurt, either. But no matter what…you have to take the shot, or you’ll never make it to the clubhouse and the amazing brunch.
So this summer I’m taking the shot…and I’ll let you know how it goes. For now, I’ve finally seen the back cover copy of CONSUMED – and here it is:
Sometimes You Mate For Life
Katie Smith is the best of her class, part of an elite hunting force trained to eliminate werewolves from the hills of Western Virginia. She’s good at it because she has the kind of focus and drive that won’t back down no matter how steep the odds. Call it southern sass. Whatever it is, there’s no denying her willingness to risk everything for the only man she’s ever cared about–a man on the verge of losing his very humanity. . .
Sometimes You Mate To Stay Alive
For the past ten years Jordan Pride has dedicated his life to protecting his people from a deadly shifter virus. But in a rare moment of distraction, Jordan’s guard drops just long enough for his fate to take an irreversible twist. Unless the woman he loves surrenders everything to him, again and again, under a full moon rising. . .
Consumed is available now for pre-order:
Everyone have a wonderful rest of the week!
Hi all! I revealed the cover for Consumed this week – what do you think? Nice abs, huh? The tough body fits the hero (Jordan, a lion shapeshifter) perfectly, and I started thinking about heroes. Well, and heroines. I like ‘em all with an edge.
Nothing against the clean-cut, boy next door, good guy…but I like a bit of darkness in a character. (And I’d rather not examine too closely why). LOL
Take Raylan Givens from Justified. Sure, he’s the good guy. But man, he shoots a lot of people, and he has his own code. There’s nothing too clean-cut about this guy…yet I root for him every week. He also makes some terrible mistakes, but you can see why he makes them. Even better, you can see how he learns from them. I guess it comes down to having a hero who isn’t perfect. What fun is perfection? (Unless you’re talking about abs, of course).
Mary Shannon from In Plain Sight is another great example. She’s sarcastic, snide, and lacks patience. But she’ll do anything for her friends and family…including taking a bullet. And even though she really doesn’t want to care, she cares deeply about the witnesses she protects. So deeply it really ticks her off.
I guess flaws are what make people interesting…and why we cheer so hard for certain characters. Overcoming those flaws makes for a good hero or heroine. What do you think makes for a good character? (Besides rippled abs?)
Hi all! We’re on spring break in Maui right now and have seen whales, sharks, and some awesome surfers. Okay, the sharks were in the aquarium, but the rest I saw in the ocean. I even offered to teach my niece and her friend how to surf since I took surfing as a PE credit in college. They just laughed. I mean, really.
Though I did go body boarding with my daughter yesterday. I woke up today with sand in all sorts of places…and a lot of aches and pains. So, I’m not sixteen any more? When the heck did that happen?
Tempted released yesterday and reached higher on the Amazon rankings than I’ve hit before. So a big thank you to everyone who downloaded it! It was #76 on Kindle Romance books and #89 on all Romance books. Very exciting! Of course, I’ve already received the expected Amazon review that says, ‘it’s too short.’ It’s a novella…it’s supposed to be about 100 pages.
If you get the chance to read Tempted, which is Max’s story…let me know what you think. I hope you like it!
Until next time, I’m off to the beach again. Even if my body realizes I’m not a teenager any longer, my brain refuses to admit the fact. Boogey board…here I come!
Happy February! I just pulled up my calendar to see where I’ll be when and guess what? The FF&P conference is in New Orleans at the end of the month. The conference actually starts on March 2nd, but I’m going a day early to play in the French Quarter. This conference worked out with my college schedule this year, and I’m so glad I get to go. I have never been there before.
In fact, I’ll be giving a workshop on “Ten Craft Blunders that may be Holding You Back.” Sound like fun, right? Here’s the outline and a handout.
What’s awesome is that the beginning few chapters of Consumed (Dark Protectors Book 4) take place in New Orleans. So we’ll see how close I came to reality. Plus, I think copy edits won’t arrive until after I’m home, so I can tweak if necessary.
One night a bunch of us are going on a vampire tour. I also want to take the cemetery tour while I’m there. Maybe the vampires will be in the cemeteries. I’m hoping!
There will be a public book signing at the conference, so if you’re in the area, please drop by. It’ll be on Sunday, March 4th from 9am until 11am at the New Orleans Marriott.
And you find as a writer there are certain spots on the planet where you write better than others, and I believe in that. And New Orleans is one of them. –Jimmy Buffett
First, let me say happy holidays to those of you in the USA celebrating Thanksgiving. If you’ve ever read my blog, you know I’m surrounded by family, which is such a blessing. I’m thankful for my crazy family, my wonderful friends, my terrific readers, my agent and editor, and my writing buddies. I’m off school today and trying to decide what hors d’ oeuvres to take to my sister’s house tomorrow. (Yes, I had to check dictionary.com for how to spell that). Google will assist me again with recipes after I post this.
Well, I’ve been so busy with promoting CLAIMED and writing book 4 of the Dark Protectors, I haven’t had a chance to show off the cover for HUNTED, which I received last week. I thought I’d show it here first, and then go Google hors d’ oeuvres. Here it is:
Moira Dunne is a witch–the quantum physics kind. Time and space are her playthings. Which might explain why her one-night stand from a hundred years ago has turned up to “claim” her–and request her family’s assistance with the war he’s brewing. But the more she learns about Connlan Kayrs, the more she comes to think this is normal behavior for him…
There’s Nowhere to Hide
When Conn and Moira tumbled on the moonlit grass, Conn hadn’t meant to mark her for his mate for all time. She was only twenty! But it wasn’t easy to wait for her. It was even harder to forget her. So when he finally returns for his wicked-hot witch, he’s ready to let the sparks fly. Even if he burns up in flames…
However, not so much with clothing. If I’m shopping by myself, I often look around to see who else is shopping in the same section I’m in. If all the ladies appear to be about ninety years old, I go find another section to shop in.
Today we’re having a big CLAIMED signing party at the Gourmet Way with wine, yummies, and giveaways. So, I thought I’d hit the mall and find something cute to wear. I found a kinda cool goldish top I thought I’d wear with my black skirt and boots. Well, last night I put it on and ran down to my husband’s den to get his opinion. He and our twelve-year-old son were watching football.
I wish I had the words to accurately describe the absolute look of horror on their faces.
Even worse, they were deadly silent. Neither one of them could speak. Then, my sweet son said, “Why hello there, Goldmember,” in a perfect imitation of Austin Powers. I gave this kid life! Well, my husband laughed so hard I thought he’d lose a kidney.
So, still not convinced, I called my sister and described the top. She sounded doubtful. Then she said, “It’s not as bad as the one you brought to New York, is it?” (That’s a conversation for another day.) But I said, “Maybe.”
So I took a picture with my phone and sent it to her. After several moments, she texted back and said, “Well, it wouldn’t be so bad with a long black skirt and boots.”
So the gold shirt has to go.
If you’re anywhere in the area of Gourmet Way tonight, please stop by and say hi! (And see what I decided to wear).
Isn’t life ironic? My mom didn’t really like Halloween. So every year the night of trick-or-treating came upon us a little too quickly, and we scrambled for costumes. We rushed up to my Nana’s house and borrowed colorful scarves, bright makeup, and clunky jewelry. In other words, I was a gypsy for at least five years running. Okay. I liked the makeup.
Don’t get me wrong here. My mom is an awesome mom. She coached pee-wee softball, was always room-mom at school, and worked her butt off (along with my dad) raising three girls. But hey, the woman just didn’t like Halloween. I think my sisters were usually anything with a wig and/or ghosts.
I love Halloween. When my kids were tiny, they still wore costumes. Blues from Blues Clues. Buzz Lightyear. Wonder Woman. New costumes every year—I went all out.
My son hit the point this year that he just isn’t into it. He may go as a football player. Of course, he wears his football jersey every Friday to school, so it’s not like a real costume. I was holding out hope that my ten year old daughter would still want to dress up. And she does! Guest what as? YEP. You got it. A GYPSY!
Are you kidding me?!? I tried to talk her out of it. We looked at costumes on the internet. It finally came down to: a gypsy costume.
So, we headed up to my mom’s house, and the woman laughed her head off as she searched through drawers for colorful scarves and chunky jewelry. The Halloween spirits must be giggling right along with her.
Everyone have a safe and fun Halloween! Also, a quick note here that CLAIMED was released into the wild (aka bookstores) yesterday and I’m running a contest for one person to win the first ARC of HUNTED. Go here for the contest.
What was either your favorite or your least favorite Halloween costume?
October is around the corner, and it’s finally getting rainy, dark, and mysterious where I live in the Pacific Northwest. In fact, it rained all day yesterday and I absolutely jumped into my current work in progress. I’m with Cynthia Eden – it’s so much fun to write in the month of goblins and monsters.
Plus, well, there’s something sexy about a good rain storm. The tension in the air, the edge of danger from Mother Nature, the idea of safety inside by a warm fire.
Rain falls quite a bit in my books, I noticed. Speaking of which (yeah, smooth transition, right?), the second book of the Dark Protectors series is available for pre-order now. CLAIMED features Dage, the king of the vampires, and Emma, a brilliant geneticist.
Here’s an excerpt:
Emma sighed. “Do you think the Kurjans are near?”
Dage shook his head without opening his eyes. “No. I don’t sense evil anywhere near us. We’re probably safe for a couple of hours, then we should move again.”
A couple of hours? Damn. She needed him in fighting shape. “Will drinking my blood help heal you?”
Emma gulped in air. The husky timber of his voice caressed nerves she didn’t want to own. “I won’t become a vampire?”
His dimples winked at her. “No. Vampires are born, not made.”
Fear and her damn curiosity blended until she could only whisper. “Okay.” She held out her wrist and shut her eyes. And waited. The breeze picked up outside the cave, rustling pine needles and leaves inside the small entrance, and she shivered. Finally, she opened her eyes in exasperation. “What?”
Reaching out with his good arm, he lifted her chin with one knuckle, waiting until her gaze met his. “I want your neck.”
Low and rough, his voice skittered need through her midriff. Talk about direct. “Um, well, why?” Her mind reeled and she fought the urge to drop her gaze to his mouth. She lost the fight. He ran a tongue along those full lips and need rippled through her. How did he do that?
He waited again until she focused on him, her eyes widening on the pure confidence shining in his. “I’ve been waiting to taste you for centuries—I don’t want you extending your wrist to me and looking the other way.”
“What do you want?” She shouldn’t have asked that. God.
For answer, he reached out with his healthy arm and lifted her until she straddled his lap. She should’ve protested, but the easy strength and warm hand on her hip caught the breath in her throat. Fascinating. Such true, raw power. She pressed both hands against the undamaged muscles of his chest, balancing herself. His erection lay thick and hard beneath her, and she fought the urge to clench her thighs against his legs.
He stared at her through half lidded eyes, his hands going to the buttons of her cotton shirt.
“What are you doing?” she breathed.
“I don’t want to get blood on your shirt.” His gaze dropped to the swell of her breasts over the plain white bra. Fire flared within those silver depths and she fought a moan.
“That’s enough.” She covered his hands with hers.
With a nod, he gently placed her hands on his thighs before clasping the shirt and drawing it down both arms. The lower buttons remained engaged, and the material trapped her arms at her sides.
He pinned her with a gaze so full of hunger she couldn’t speak. “You’ll give your blood?”
Emma nodded, her focus narrowing to the man before her.
Sharp fangs emerged from his canines and he growled, reaching one arm around to cup her head and pull to the side. Her neck stretched and vulnerability battled with arousal down her length. Every muscle in her body tensed to flee. His other hand gasped her hip, flexed, then slid up to her now bare shoulder, entrapping her.
There was no escaping him.
So…I love Fall. How about you? Are you ready for the weather to change (if it does where you live) or could you use some more sunshine?