Monday, July 30, 2012

Fair Conditions

Friday night we braved the heat and couldn't resist the pull of the Ozark Empire Fair. Here are some of the photos I took for your Monday morning.

FREE!!! Nachos. Who could say no to free?

Angry beaver. Back away slowly and do not make eye contact.

One word: eww?!

Mama mini donkey.

Baby mini donkey.

Ferris wheel.

Gigi & Zeus the goats

Gigi sucking on my thumb. Aww. :)

Baby piggies!

Hungry piggies.
Flying pig on the pig racing truck.

I bet this took a lot of time!




Friday, July 27, 2012

Hubba, Hubba Hero


If you're looking for heartthrobs, you're on the right track. This weekend is Carrie Ann Ryan's Hero Hop (where you can win fabulous prizes including a Kindle Fire, gift cards, or an awesome swag pack). Stick around, get to know my hunkie hero and leave a comment for a chance to win a $10 gift card right here.

He just talked and talked.
In a sexy Dutch accent.
I'm knee deep in heroes right now from my self-published series Legends and Lovers. Among them are Abel Courte, Basil Tinwhistle and I'm trying to get a sure fix on the hero of my next WIP. But today's hero is very close to my heart, a guy who would not leave me alone until I wrote a novel for him: Captain Alwin van Buren. Who better to describe his own need for a story than the captain himself?

Hi, Alwin. Thanks for joining me today. Tell us about yourself.
Think nothing of it. It's my pleasure to be here. I'm the owner of successful airship company, the husband of a beautiful young bride, and the hero of the novel The Sky Pirate's Wife. Born and raised in Pennsylvania, I didn't want to be blacksmith like my grandfather, nor a farmer like my father. Airships have always compelled me. I started training to be an airman when I was a teenager. It's not an easy route to take and it's very difficult to get a license to fly, but I was always determined.


Care to tell us a little about your book?
The Sky Pirate's Wife is set in 1886, two years after The Treasure Hunter's Lady. I was privy to every detail of that adventure and while the public never learned the truth, a writer became aware of my actions. Suddenly I was the star of a series of dime novels, which helped me expand my shipping business. Unfortunately, it didn't do anything for my reputation. Society loves an outcast, so to some I am hero and others a villain.

It was the perfect life, until I lost my flagship, the Ursula Ann in an explosion. To save my company, I took a bride, one with a handsome dowry. Sophie Barnes is the heiress to Barnes Shipping, but her godfather is controlling and to say he isn't one of my fans is an understatement. So I seduced her and offered to marry her.

Despite a rocky start, Sophie and I learned we have much in common and it might have lead right to the happily-ever-after, except I chose to keep the real reason for my flagship's demise a secret. The world would have thought me mad if I'd told everyone it was attacked by giant eagles. When they started attacking other airships--specifically one transferred to me on our marriage--I realized we had to do something, even if it meant losing the company and my wife, as long as Sophie remained safe.

Gee, that's intense.
*Glowering* You would know, author dearest.

At the time the book starts, you've been an airship captain for seven years. What's your favorite destination so far?
I've seen much of North America from coast to coast and parts of Canada. Despite my preference for staying in the air, I enjoy visiting my moeder's home in Pennsylvania. It's beautiful country. If Sophie and I were to chose a place to settle down--God forbid that day arises--we have talked about a home in the Rocky Mountains. They provide an excellent view.

Fenton Marlowe, the first mate and the man you trust most with your life, tried to convince you that marrying strictly for business wasn't the way to go. Obviously you disagreed. Was it Sophie's money that drew you in, or her looks?
Fenton meant well, I think. He believed marriage would make me miserable as my first love was flying. I met Sophie after the wreck and she was very kind when she didn't have to be. There are many things about her that caught my interest, looks among them.That she's nothing like her godfather--cold, greedy, interested only in power--helped make the decision. The second time we met, she had me with a smile. Sophie is demanding, defiant, stubborn, but she's also loyal, intelligent, quick witted, and of course, beautiful.

If you could change one thing in the book, what would it have been?
*Sits back in chair, rubs hand over chin* I regret being unable to save the Ursula Ann and her crew. We were caught by surprise when the eagles attacked and it resulted in the loss of good friends. It was unfortunate that Sophie and I met under such circumstances, but the result our of meeting is worth the trials we faced.

That's a noble way to look at it. Sophie talked you into taking in a stray cat. How's Pieter doing?
*rolls eyes, but fights a grin* Sophie still treats him as though he's a small person in a furry suit rather than a cat.

*long silence*

All right, he's amusing and not nearly as destructive or irritating as I thought he would be. And he's good company when Sophie is sleeping on the nights I take watch. At least he doesn't talk back. But don't mention it to Sophie that she was right about having a pet, or I'll be subject to her gloating.

If we made a movie about you, who would play you?
I think we both know you had Chris Hemsworth in mind to play that part. We are similar : Tall, muscular, deep voices. For you, dear author, it was obvious from the start. Although he couldn't possibly hope to be as attractive as I am, but no one expects movies to get everything right.

No one can pull the wool over your eyes, Captain. Thanks for dropping in. Without further ado, here's an excerpt from The Sky Pirate's Wife.
Van Buren waited for the maître d'hotel to pull out a seat for Sophie before he sat at the table. “Have the waiter bring champagne while we consider the menu.”
Of course, sir.” The maitre'd hurried off.
Sophie looked at him like he'd gone mad. “Isn't it a little early in the day for champagne?”
We're celebrating.”
Toasting to your craftiness is a bit conceited.” She stared at the heavy paper menu.
Shouldn't I be? Look at yourself in the mirror, Sophie. I have no reason to be ashamed of marrying an attractive woman.”
She looked up sharply. “You didn't marry me for that reason and to say so is a lie. Let's talk about something else if you have to make conversation.”
What is so bad about being married to me? You were enamored last night.” He didn't know how it happened, but he was tracing the scar along his face. “Am I too terrible to be seen with?”
Conceited,” she said again, but her voice softened. “You're not ugly, Alwin. This has nothing to do with the way either of us look. It's the method you used to pry the company away from Bernard. It wasn't clever or even the least bit fair.”
He got lost in the way she spoke his name. So many people assumed his name was pronounced with a V instead of a W sound, but then she'd probably listened to Carver curse him for years. The shape her mouth took when she pronounced the last syllable made her look ready for a kiss. He remembered all too well the weight of her body pressed against his, the slightly clumsy way her mouth brushed his lips.
Food no longer appealed to him. He wanted her.
He cleared his throat, trying to remember the course of the conversation. “Forgive me if you think I meant to be devious in my actions. The sooner you and Carver come to realize I don't intend to destroy Barnes Shipping, the better off our relationships will be.”
What are your plans, Van Buren? Am I allowed to ask for that information?”
Well, Mrs. van Buren, I must first speak to the accountants about finances. These ships Carver purchased must be reviewed. They may be too extravagant for my needs.” He straightened in his chair, thinking about the amount Carver must have spent on the trimmed and loaded ships.
You can probably stop the order to Beltson and Dees if you contact them soon. Though I think the cargo ship will suit you. I saw the plans for it and a few of the customizations Bernard had done up.”
How will it suit me?” Curiosity pestered him while Sophie smiled, delaying her answer.
The prow is hand-carved and exquisite. It's a phoenix accented in silver, copper and bronze. It really does look as if it's rising from the ashes.”
Inwardly he winced, thinking of the extra weight of the metal and the cost. “Why would I need such a thing?”
She narrowed her eyes at him. “There isn't a soul in the world who doesn't know of your humble beginnings. Now look at you, strutting like a king. A perfect metaphor if I ever saw one. Besides, it matches that fine pin you're wearing.”
He was so accustomed to attaching the phoenix pin he put it on daily without thinking about it. Yes, he'd come from a poor background, but he'd made something out of himself because his mother never let him forget his dream. From the ashes, he'd built a company and a solid reputation as a businessman.
I haven't strutted all day. Are you sure you aren't in league with Farley Sikes? He will have that ridiculous character strutting about in a royal manner in no time.”
I'll be a willing conspirator with him if he pays well.” She went back to the menu at the same time the waiter came with the champagne. He settled a bucket of ice in Van Buren's reach and a flute in front of each of them.
Congratulations on your wedding, Captain and Mrs. van Buren.” The cork flew out of the bottle with the customary pop. Pale golden liquid splashed into the spotless crystal with a merry chugging sound from the bottle.
Enjoy the champagne.” He took their orders and ducked off, silent as a shadow.
“How did he know we were married?”
He shook his head. “Word of mouth, I should guess.”
“I'll want a ring, you know. My hand is bare and that won't do.” Sophie wiggled her fingers, testing the light as though she could picture a diamond glistening on her ring finger already.
“Is that all it takes to appease you, wife? Shall I buy you some sparkling rocks and turn you out among your friends to admire them?” He lifted his glass.
“You laugh now, but I won't settle for some small bit of glitter.” She sounded positively snobbish. “You're rich and I'll have the ring due to a woman of my station.”
He laughed and almost spilled his champagne. “What is your station? I think a pirate's bride must covet a stolen jewel.”
“You'll have to be more than pirate now, Captain. I'll train you into a proper gentleman yet.” The confidence ringing in her voice startled him.
“Oh? I'm interested in hearing more about this training. You aren't suggesting that my moeder didn't press me to learn manners.”
“I never even imagined you had a mother. Bernard always said he believed you were raised by weasels.” She picked up the flute and started to drink, but he reached across the table and stopped her.
“A toast. To a man raised by weasels who sold his soul to the devil to obtain a wealthy wife and an entire fleet of airships.” He lifted his own glass, extending it so she could tap hers against it. “May we find every happiness.”

September 17, 2012


After a tragic airship wreck, Captain Alwin van Buren makes a drastic decision to obtain a wealthy bride in order to save his flagging business. He meets his match in Sophie Barnes, heiress to an airship empire. After he seduces her and ensures their marriage—igniting a rivalry with her godfather—he learns the green-eyed beauty is as headstrong as he is.

Sophie knows Van Buren's reputation based on a series of dime novels written about his adventures. Determined to be more than an end to a means, she despises him for luring her into marriage. In fiction, he's a no-nonsense captain on the verge of piracy, but the flesh-and-blood man wins her heart by proving she's worth more to him than her money.

Their love is threatened when Sophie learns Van Buren's airship accident was a result of mythical creatures. Winged predators that appear to have a grudge against him, a fact he deliberately hid by accusing her godfather of sabotage. If she can forgive him for that, they still have to face the danger when they're cornered and at the mercy of beasts and the evil that controls them. The real test comes when Van Buren is asked to make a sacrifice that could destroy them both.

Because winning is awesome and prizes are fun, I'm giving away a $10 gift card to one lucky commenter, your choice to either Amazon or Barnes & Noble. 

Before you go, don't forget to check out the first book in the Legends and Lovers series The Treasure Hunter's Lady--the love story that started it all--for Kindle and in print.

A cowboy willing to risk his life to keep a promise.
An adventurer's daughter determined to live up to her father's name.
A legend that will bind them together.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wednesday Ramblings

Henh. Apparently I have no guest today. Well, okay then. I'll just ramble, shall I? First of all:

Happy Birthday, Stobrod!

How's it feel to be 30, huh? Not as much fun to make fun of someone who's the same age as you now, is it? Yeah, that's what I thought.

I'm reading through The Sky Pirate's Wife again. Mind plotting *ta-da!* The Soul Catcher's Siren (unless I find out I hate that title. It's happened), even though I shouldn't be. Did you know it's just 6 days until Camp NaNo August? No! Stop, Allison, just stop. Right. There. None of that. No new books. No, no, no, no, no. You can wait until November.

But . . . .


Sometimes I just get on a writing kick and that's all I want to do. Because it's a hundred thousand times more fun than editing. And this idea is all new and shiny. Find an author who isn't excited by new and shiny ideas. There isn't one.

So I'm fighting the temptation to write another novel because that's not something I really need on my plate right now. Seriously, how are some some authors working on two or three? I get so distracted, I can only focus on one. Anyone who's got more than one WIP and is dedicated to them, wow, you're amazing.

And I want to remind you that Friday is the start of the Hero Blog Hop. You'll want to be here for that because I'm giving away a $10 gift card to either Amazon or B&N and collectively the hoppers are giving away a Kindle Fire and a massive swag pack. So come on in to visit with the hero of The Sky Pirate's Wife, Captain Alwin van Buren, and maybe win a prize! 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Fin

I'm sure I didn't do anything exceptionally tiring this weekend, but man, am I tired. I had about 8000 words left to write on The Turncoat's Temptress Friday evening and I managed about 2000 Saturday morning. It was an agonizingly slow black moment/fight scene that almost had me in tears. Probably no one else will feel that way, but I really had a lot of sympathy for the heroine, Nora.

Husband dragged me away from the computer to see The Dark Knight Rises. Okay, when I say dragged, I actually mean I couldn't wait to see it. As a general rule, I'm not a Christian Bale fan. He seems a little intense because he's a "superstar". Imagine my delight as I watched and realized the movie wasn't intensely focused on his character. Husband said the movie could have been called "Where's Batman?" instead of "Where's Waldo?"

Seriously, where did Joseph Gordon-Levitt come from? I mean, other than his role in 3rd Rock and a few appearances here and there. Damn. There are rumors of The Justice League coming out summer 2015 with (hopefully) Ryan Reynolds reprising his role as Green Lantern and there's a new Superman movie coming out next summer. I would love to see Gordon-Levitt in the Batman role. I think that would round off the Justice League nicely.

I managed to finished TcT off Sunday evening and agonized over the ending while we grocery shopped. One part of me was dancing a little as it realized I'd pulled off an 80k word novel in about two months, which ended with a definite opening for another novel and the other part was going, oh God, I'm so tired, writing 80k in two months almost killed me. Actually, I think it's just the heat killing me.

There were a lot of elements that surprised me about this one. At the beginning of it, I seriously doubted my ability to pull another Native American myth into it. Oh, but I did, *mwahahahaha*. Not to mention adding a goblin, a selkie, and an ape man from India. Sound weird? Good. I read a fascinating article about quicksand. Almost drowning the hero? Check. Giving him a serious weakness that might cost him his life? Check.

I felt a little sad as we arrived home from grocery shopping. Normally the second the groceries were put away, I'd snatch up my laptop and dive into writing. My main goal was to finish TcT so I could get really serious about The Sky Pirate's Wife. All I want to do is keep working on TcT. No, bad writer! Priorities, man! So I'm tucking TcT away for a while, redirecting my focus and starting another read through of SPW. You know, as I've told myself I will have to ready for release in September. Crazy panic be damned.

Friday, July 20, 2012

The Friday Five - Reasons I'm Not Finished With Legends & Lovers


Wednesday night I was laying at the foot of my bed listening to my husband talk abut trucks. He loves jacked up 4X4s and monster trucks and truck pulls and off-roading. I confess, I love Monster Truck Thunderdrags and I have been known to enjoy truck pulls (yes, I have my favorites).

He held up a magazine photo of some truck and I said, "What do you think about the title The Soul Catcher's Lover? The hero is a photographer. Kodak invented the first roll film in 1888. Well, Kodak didn't, but some guy named Eastman did."

Lord, give me strength. No, on second thought
I might use it to smother someone with a pillow.
And he continued to talk about the truck. I didn't like the ring of the title. A few minutes later he said, "What did you say?"

I repeated the part about the camera. He blinked. "You said The Bed Sheet's Camera, right?"

I just rolled my eyes.

The magazine photo of the truck landed on the bed. "I thought after this one, you were done with that."

"No, I never did write Ransom's story. I promised."

His turn for an eye roll. I didn't mention that I'm dabbling at a novella with a couple of the characters from The Sky Pirate's Wife. Specifically the first mate and Van Buren's mother. Because they deserve each other, mostly for having to put up with Van Buren.

Anyway, here are five reasons The Turncoat's Temptress won't be the last novel in the Legends & Lovers series.

See? Woolly chaps. Say hi to the Interwebz, Ransom.
Apparently he fancied himself some sort of
woolly chap wearing gunfighter?
#1) I never did write Ransom's story. I wrote the beginning, about a Scottish man named Ransom (named after a deceased family member who wore woolly chaps), who rescued kidnapped women and was betrayed/lost someone and pretty much became a bum before his superior asked him to help with another case. He fell in love with a young woman who couldn't speak, but could sing. I don't know, okay? It was part of a curse. Obviously that idea flopped. Instead, I got to thinking about the superior, who was a ginormous pompous a-hole. And The Turncoat's Temptress was born. I promised Ransom I would come back to him.

#2) There's a character from TcT who intrigued me right away. This works out because the superior who was supposed to boss Ransom around is a paranormal investigator. The character from TcT happens to be a paranormal creature. Currently she's betrayed the investigator because his superior has something she wants.  I plan for her to flee the East Coast for the West where Ransom is now a photographer instead of a rescuer. The reason I want to call it The Soul Catcher's something is because of the native theory that when someone took a picture, it sucked their soul into the box. Ta-da! Genius, right?

#3) I found a picture I desperately want to use on the cover. It. Is. Perfect for the story I have in mind. No, it does not feature woolly chaps.

If I stop, clowns will eat me. 
#4) I have an idea for another series, but I'm a-scared to move on. I am in my comfort zone and I shiver with fear when I think about not writing steampunk romance. It would still be romance and it would still have historical elements, but it wouldn't be steampunk romance. I know, I know, knock that baby bird outta the nest and fly, dammit, but I'm an adult and I can work at my own pace if I want to. My mom said so.

#5) Writing The Soul Catcher's something could inspire me to keep going. There could even be five books eventually. There could even be more more. Maybe. All it takes is one tiny spark and I'm off again like a shot.

Oh, and in case you missed the FB posting, you can now read chapter one of The Treasure Hunter's Lady and The Sky Pirate's Wife now for free.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Author Interview - Leslie Lee Sanders


What's your book/current WIP about?

Before the Darkness (Refuge Inc., #1) is an MM post-apocalyptic erotic romance that takes place in a ruined Phoenix the days after an asteroid impact. It follows survivors Elliot and Adam and focuses on their growing attraction for each other as they hunt for spray painted signs across Phoenix. Signs directing them to a mysterious place called Refuge Inc. Book one is a dark, suspenseful, character- driven introduction to the series and an in-depth look at the characters and their companionship.

Care to share your favorite line(s) from your story?

Adam chewed his bottom lip and stood motionless for a few seconds. What could he possibly be thinking about? He then continued to move furniture around the room. "You know that saying that goes something like, be thankful for every day because you don't know what the future holds?"

Elliot nodded, rolling his eyes. "Yeah, I've heard people say that plenty of times."

Adam paused, looking ahead with a vacant stare. "I really get the meaning now."

What's your next project?

Book two of the Refuge Inc. series, Amid the Darkness, is my current work in progress. This story is more of an MM post-apocalyptic dystopian erotic romance. Without giving too much away, it follows the same characters immediately after the first book and further explores the mysteries of Refuge Inc.

Describe your writing in a sentence.

My writing is a straightforward, unapologetic look at in-your-face sex, flawed characters and words that suck you into every scene.

Do you choose character names or do the characters whisper them in your ears?

I choose the name that best suits the character. What name would I call the person that looked like this, sounds like that, grew up in this place, etc? And then I see how the characters' names play off of each other before I decide.

Plotter or panster?

With my novels I definitely outline the plot. There are usually too many characters or subplots that I need to keep track of and having some sort of outline works well for me in that case. Shorter works, I usually have a theme in mind or maybe a couple characters that pushes me to write and see where it takes me.

Do you like background noise or do you prefer a quiet space when you write?

I listen to music while I write. If I didn't, then I would hear the distracting sounds of children laughing or crying, Spongebob Squarepants on the TV in another room, or the frequent "Mom!" every other minute. Music that fits the mood of the story I'm working on usually inspires me more than distract me.

What are you currently reading?

I'm actually reading a lot of nonfiction books to further improve my writing skills. I've recently read So You Want to Write a Novel, Nail your Novel, and Write Good or Die. The books are very useful writing tools which provide great tips on everything from plot to characters.

What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview and how would you answer it?

The question would be: What do you wish non-writers knew about writing? My answer is: I wish they knew the difficulties and the time it takes to get the final product to them in nearly perfect, if not perfect, form. That way they could fully appreciate the book making process and the struggling authors behind them. Lately, there's been a lot of author bashing in negative reviews, and it would be great if true book lovers continued to support writers and their efforts with the reader's honest opinions about their books. And hope readers who bash authors follow suit and critique the stories instead of speaking negatively about the authors.

People think I'm weird because...

I don't drive. I stopped driving in 2001 and never had the urge to do so again. Realizing that you're responsible for a ton of steel that can double as a lethal weapon can cause a person to reconsider handling such deadly objects.


Title: Before the Darkness (Refuge Inc., Book One)
Author: Leslie Lee Sanders
Publisher: Self
Length: 45,000 words
Genre: Romance
Sub-Genre: Contemporary
Sub-Categories: Erotic, Gay (M/M), Mystery/Thriller, Post-Apocalyptic
Heat Level: Sizzling (Highly explicit sex scenes/language.)

Available at:

Blurb:
After an asteroid strikes Earth, a series of violent earthquakes destroy secluded Phoenix and leave survivor Elliot struggling to stay focused in the bleak aftermath. And then he meets fellow survivor Adam. Together, the two search for reliable shelter and other survivors while distant murky clouds fast approach. Their hunt for shelter leads them down an alternate path when they find spray painted symbols directing them to a mysterious place: Refuge Inc.

As ominous clouds slowly shut off all light to their devastated world, they are forced to come to terms with their pasts and their growing attraction for each other.

Neither thought their pasts and personal crises would affect their ability to endure the horrors they're forced to live through. Neither thought they would be drawn so close to one another in the aftermath of an unimaginable catastrophe. By working together, can they continue to survive? Or will the mystery of Refuge Inc. cause diverse expectations and lead them to decisions that further threaten their lives?

Excerpt:
"See that dark color on the horizon?" Adam pointed to the east, suddenly looking somber. "That's a wall of smoke, ash, dust and who knows what else, and it's coming our way."

"What? What do you mean?" A bit of panic began to stir in Elliot's stomach like a bowl of his mother's spicy and overly greasy chili. He'd thought the worst was over.

"Ever heard of impact winter?" Adam's green eyes pierced his and neither moved. "What's headed for us isn't good. We're gonna have to take shelter somewhere and fast before it blocks out all light and it gets so dark we won't be able to tell which way is up. Can't run from it either," he added, as if predicting Elliot's next question. "Been watching it for a couple hours now and it's moving pretty fast."

"What do you mean it's going to get dark?" He knew he looked like a wide-eyed idiot, but he didn't care much about his appearance at the moment.

"Let me put it this way. Once the sun sets we're not gonna see it rise for quite some time. That wall of soot headed our way is so thick it will block out the sun. It will take months, maybe years, for all the crap to fall down."

"Are you sure?" He dipped his eyebrows suspiciously. "How do you know all this?"

"When those assholes finally told us that an asteroid might hit, I went looking for info about anything to do with asteroids hitting Earth and that's what I found out. We need to find some shelter."

Elliot looked at the dark grey horizon. Indeed, the cloud of unnerving darkness grew bigger, wider, closer. His heart dropped, it sank in the pit of his stomach like a ton of concrete rubble. "We're not going to make it, huh?" He gulped, suddenly feeling defeated. Panic. "What's the point in finding shelter when we're not gonna live to see the sun again?"

Adam grabbed his hand, gave it a gentle squeeze and let it loose before Elliot realized it had happened. The friendly squeeze hadn't been part of his imagination. A look of sincerity and concern painted Adam's handsome face. "I was beginning to think the same thing and then I saw you. Like I said, two heads are better than one."

Video Book Trailer:

About the Author:
The author of several books of fiction and fiction with spice, Leslie Lee Sanders spends her time writing erotic romances (mostly in the gay and ménage categories). She currently has two books available for mature teen readers and several erotic romances published as e-books and in print.


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Fly Killer of Realization

Forgive me while I laugh at myself. Something just occurred to me. I've always said I don't understand plotters. I envy them, yes, I do, for being able to write out their ideas and follow a plan. Technically I should be an awesome plotter, because I'm very visual, but when I write, I just throw my story to the wind and let the character take over.

Splat.
This morning as I sit here, wondering how to bring an end in 10,000 words, give or take, to my current WIP The Turncoat's Temptress, something hit me.

I am a plotter. I'm just a really slow, crazy, gotta write an entire book before I realize that I hate certain parts of it and I can do better kind of plotter.

For example: The Treasure Hunter's Lady had an entirely different setting the first time around. Granted, I only changed the setting (and therefore the plot because it required shifting cultures and myths) because an agent told me the book would never sell if it was set in Australia. (I waver back and forth over whether the changes were a mistake. There's really no way to know now.) Otherwise, I'd have been fine with how the book originally ended.

But in The Sky Pirate's Wife, I wrote it during NaNoWriMo 2010. After I finished making all the changes to THL, I decided SPW hadn't turned out the way I wanted it to and I rewrote it last year during NaNo. First I wrote a 50k book (or a super-duper long outline) and then I wrote the real SPW, the one that just wouldn't shine during NaNo the first go-round.

So I'm sitting here at 70k with The Turncoat's Temptress, hating how I'm pretty sure I screwed up the black moment and started wishing to heaven I had some kind of plan to turn this around. And then that giant fly killer of realization hit me. I do. It's call finish the damn book and rewrite it later.

Oh, yeah! Duh!

And you can argue with me all day about how it's really a flyswatter, but do you want to swat the fly, or kill it? Think about it.

Monday, July 16, 2012

SIFWIW - Sunday Called, It Said Mondays are Stupid & Don't Deserve Acknowledgement

I don't feel like talking because I had a weird dream about Ghandi, James Marsden, a water slide and an air mattress. They both lied to me in the dream. It was pretty upsetting. Here's some visual stimulation. Enjoy.

(Waste of) waterfall at Chateau on the Lake.

If I saw a butterfly that large in real life, I would run.

Mungo begging to come in from the rain.

Now that's a boat.

Self-portrait.

Skyline at Hurley. The camera never captures sunsets
the same way the eye sees them. It was a lot different.


Maybe the perfect flask for absinthe?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

God Made a Raccoon Fry the Transformer So I Would Get Something Done

It was like this, only with no lanterns/candles because
I'm the proud peon with a window in my office. And
my ereader has a backlight.
Yesterday we had a power outage for most of the morning because, no joke, a raccoon fried a transformer. The lights came back on right after lunch. The lunch where I ate some stale Doritos that had been in my car (it's not like I was picking them off the floor or the seat. Eeeww) because I couldn't use the microwave and the restaurant around the corner couldn't cook food.

But with the computers down, I had time to read. Ooo, ooo, what did I read?

I read The Sky Pirate's Wife from start to finish. I highlighted and noted on my e-reader. My heart was warmed and touched by my characters. Um, yeah, I think it's okay for me to say that. When I got to the end of the book, I thought about how great these characters are. Most of the stuff I highlighted and noted was human error, things like that blankety-blank Oxford comma (oh, how I hate you), and a phrase here and there.

Dear Stan Lee/Marvel,
please don't sue me for
misrepresentation of the Thor
character. I heart you. Also, admit it,
I make that uniform look awesome. And
we all know the pen is mightier than
the sword, which is only mighty
because of the hammer which 
erased from this photo, so therefore I win.
Looking back at last month, recalling the horrible panic that set in when I knew I couldn't have SPW ready for e-readers, I'm going: Ha ha, silly child! Mighty and powerful Allison has this under control.

I've added a scene or two. Bulked up (I hope) some of the weaker scenes. I formatted last night, added the copyright gibberish, a dedication page (I haven't actually dedicated SPW to anyone though, it's just there for when I decide to dedicate), and added my author bio to the back. It a word, the format is perfect.

Okay, it probably isn't  perfect, but it shore is purty. Unlike my head altered to fit the Thor body. I'm kind of impressed with my own skill though. It only took me like 20 minutes to do that. And it wouldn't be the first time I've been mistaken for a man. No, seriously. I tend to think of myself as a handsome woman, but that's a whole different post.
Moving on and back to writing.

I'm toying with new release dates, because I'd more or less talked myself into September. Last night I was thinking about August, but no August dates really jump out at me. So I'm thinking about randomly picking a date. Yes, the world needs a random pick-a-date widget. I'm thinking about a Tuesday because a lot of things come out on Tuesdays.

Last night I hit 61k on The Turncoat's Temptress, which means it's 76% finished. These last twenty thousand words should be a piece of cake (except because I just said that, they will be the hardest words to write EVER. It's a scientific fact that when I say piece of cake, whatever I'm doing gets really hard. I have proof). I still have a lot of work to do there, and I have a pretty good idea of what I'm going to do after it's finished (nothing, ha ha ha, not a damned thing for like two weeks!).

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Hercules Glade/Martin Fire


You might have heard about the wildfire that raced through the Mark Twain National Forest last week. It wasn't as devastating as the Colorado wildfires. Fortunately no one here died and no houses burned down (only one was a little singed). The end result was 1,500 acres of national forest burnt cinder black. I heard two explanations for the cause: one a spark from a brush hog and the other a spark from a lawn mower. I suppose that more or less amounts to the same thing. 

Husband and I went down on Saturday because he grew up down there. We were curious to see what had burned and what was standing. Many's the time when we were dating that we went four-wheeler riding on the government property. You could smell the smoke in Garrison, Mo, about ten miles from the fire.

The Missouri Forestry Department brought in crews from Michigan, Ohio, and Iowa to help contain the blaze because Missouri crews had been fighting another fire up north all week. 

We talked to a crew out of Iowa who had no clue how to get around on the twisty roads. Husband asked if it burned the Miriam Cemetery (the sign was sure burned away) and the firefighter said he didn't know because they couldn't find it. They wouldn't let us go on down that road because trees were falling all over the place down there.

Campground at Miriam Cemetery Road

The trees are so thick you couldn't get a decent shot of the valley below the campground, but the entire area was black.


You can see on the left side of the road where the fire was contained. On the right side of the road, it hasn't been touched by fire. With all the ash and leafless trees it was like a bizarre winter/summer scene.


The area a little farther down the road from the campground was still smoking on Saturday. We ran into a couple of firetrucks, a forestry truck with a trailer behind it, and a some machinery they used to help control the fire. On Friday they went ahead and set fire to meet the fire that was already burning to keep it from spreading to other parts of the forest. As I understand it, they got it contained by Sunday or Monday.

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Friday Five - Motivational Songs

I had to get a new TFF logo because when I accidentally deleted all the pictures from my Google account, the TFF logo went too. This one is cooler anyway.

My muse is on vacay. I know I'm not the only one who feels like that. Lousy bum, didn't even ask if I wanted to come.

So when I can't write, I like to think about songs that make me feel like I'm a powerful writing warrior. Granted, most songs aren't about writing. A lot of them are about singers trying to get famous. Well, we can change some words here and there. Here are my top picks for this week (with YouTube links):

1) P.O.D. - Boom
I like this one for it's beat and also because I feel like I can bring something different (oh, I'm "different" all right LOL) to the romance genre. It's the boom.

2) Eminem - Lighters
This one's for you and me, living out our dreams. Yeah. I like that.

3) Tom Petty - Won't Back Down
An oldie, but a goodie. Even when things don't seem to be going my way, I think of Mr. Petty's resolution to stand firm.

4) Gym Class Heroes - The Fighter
If you fall, pick yourself up off the floor. And when your bones can't take no more, just remember what you're here for.

5) New Radicals - Get What You Give
This one is an old standby, one of my very favorites and it always comes to mind when I need a lift. They got you down on your knees, so polite you're busy still saying please. That lines makes me think of agents and publishers who us poor authors practically beg to see our stuff. This whole damn world can fall apart, it'll be okay, follow your heart. Mmm, I LOVE this song.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Book Spotlight - Accidental Love by Lacey Wolfe


Has Jane accidentally fallen for the decoy?

Sometimes there is only one thing to do when you get dumped—make the ex jealous with someone new. Which is exactly what Jane plans to do with Ben, an older, handsome man who has agreed to act as her new love interest.

When Ben meets Toby, Jane's unruly dog, he offers to help her train him. But as Ben helps Jane gain control of her dog, he realizes he's lost control of his feelings, and he's beginning to fall for the much younger woman.

Suddenly, Jane can't seem to remember what she ever saw in her ex. All she can focus on is the way Ben makes her feel each time he kisses her. But now the ex has decided he wants her back, and he's willing to play dirty to make it happen.

Excerpt:

Matt cleared his throat behind her. Jane's eyes widened in shock and she slowly slid her hands from Ben's neck, down his firm chest. She turned to face her ex-lover, and Ben's arm tightened around her waist, holding her close.

"Hi, I'm Ben." He extended his hand toward Matt.

Matt kept his arms crossed. He looked pissed, which was good, she hoped.

"Well, I'm off on my lunch break," she said.

"Don't be late, Jane. We have a staff meeting, so you'll need to be back to handle any gym members." Matt walked away, heavy footed.

Ben took her hand and led her outside to his car. As they reached the vehicle she expected him to drop the act, but instead he opened her door for her and then closed it once she was seated.

He climbed in and asked, "How long do you have?"

"An hour. Fast food is fine if you want to drop me off and then pick me up."

He chuckled. "I know a place where we can share a meal in under an hour."

"You don't have to eat with me."

"Jane, I want to."

The hour went much faster than Jane would have liked. Ben was a lot of fun and took his boyfriend duties seriously. He had opened her car door and held her hand. This was something she could easily get used to. She was going to tell him he didn't have to pretend when they were away from the gym but each time he touched her she was at peace. Was it wrong to have a crush on the decoy? Perhaps it was the George Clooney look he had going on. It was every girl's fantasy.

Ben parked in front of Hot Bods and quickly came around the side of the car and helped her out. Taking her hand in his again, he walked her back. She started to object and it was like he sensed it. Releasing her hand, he tugged her closer and wrapped his arm around her waist, cradling her to him.

They stopped in front of the door.

"I had a lovely lunch," he said.

"Thank you. Me too."

He stepped closer. She sensed what was coming next, and she was more than ready. He rubbed her cheek with the back of his fingers then tilted her face toward his. Leaning down, he gently brushed his lips across hers. She moaned and was almost embarrassed to be reacting this way. He kissed a small line to her neck and her mouth opened, still whimpering. She was lost in the sensation of his light kisses and forgot they were out in the open. She was so turned on that if they had been alone she would have let this man explore her entire body.

Ben released her face, and she was slightly disappointed it was over.

"Have a good day." He kissed her once more on the lips.

He'd kissed her speechless. She didn't say a word. Instead, she simply watched as the most amazing man she'd ever met headed across the parking lot toward his car. He was good. Very good. Maybe that was why Francesca was always after older men. They really knew what they were doing.

Book Trailer:


About The Author:
Lacey Wolfe has always had a passion for words, whether it’s getting lost in a book or writing her own. From the time she was a child she would slip away to write short stories about people she knew and fantasies she wished would happen. It has always been her dream to be a published author and with her two children now of school age, she finally has the time to work on making her dream come true.

Lacey lives in Georgia with her husband, son and daughter, their six cats and one black lab who rules the house.

You can find Lacey at the following places:
Her site
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