Friday, March 29, 2013

The Friday Five - Sort of a City Ditty

I was busy editing this week and forgot all about TFF. I'm a terrible blogger. Um, let me think...

Five Things You Didn't Know About The Setting(s) of The Turncoat's Temptress. Go!

The book is set in a couple of places, actually. It starts in Norfolk, Virginia. I have never been to Virginia. I hope I don't insult the natives with my lack of knowledge about swamps. I'm not sure I've ever officially been to a swamp, although I did drive past a bayou in Louisiana. The rest of the novel is set in St. Louis and Illinois. I haven't been to either in years. All I remember about Illinois is that it was flat.

David Edward Cronin, 1888.
1) Norfolk is Virginia's second largest city. D.C. doesn't count, y'all. That's it's own . . . y'know, thingy. (District, if you want to get technical). Norfolk was known as Elizabeth Cittie in 1619 when the British started setting up colonies. It was, of course, brought about by the Virginia Company. Admit it, you're singing the Disney song right now in your head. I am. I also took our hero and heroine to the Great Dismal Swamp and discussed some of the history and legend there. How slaves hid in it, and a story about the Phantom Lovers.

2) Basil sends Van Buren a 'gram at the middle of the book asking if the captain can meet him and Nora in Richmond rather than them trying to drive to Philadelphia to meet him. The 'gram is sent from City Point, VA. Get out your maps, kids and find it for me. I'll wait. Okay, you back? That's right. City Point doesn't exist, but if you Googled it, you saw that there is a city called Hopewell that annexed it in 1923.

3) Richmond, where Van Buren parks his ship to meet Basil and Nora, is an independent city. It doesn't belong to any counties.

4) I chose to set the rest of the book in the St. Louis/Illinois area because of the mounds there. There was once a huge Native American population in the Midwest and there are hundreds of mounds built in the area. The decline of the American Indian civilization known as Cahokia in Illinois came around 1400 AD. St. Louis was settled by French explorers in 1673.

5) You can visit the site where the climax of TcT happens. Monks Mound is an earthwork structure as big as the Giza Pyramid. No one is quite sure how it was built, but the samples of dirt taken from it suggest some of it came from way down south. Think Mississippi. Archaeologists have discovered all kinds of bones, tools, toys, weapons, and holy items from the mound. Trappist monks moved to the area and gardened the first tier of the mound, but never lived on it. I'd love to tell you more about monks, but I've only been to one monastery and I was too shy to talk to any monks. I'm not sure what I would say to one anyway. "Hi, I was raised Penticost, but converted to Baptist, although it's really unofficial since I wasn't baptized when my friends were because I worried that Old Pete would drown me"? Um, yeah, that would just be awkward.

Okay, my religion aside, there you have it.

Have a great weekend, kids and a Happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Interview - Elodie Parks



What's your book/current WIP about?

My next release is The Last Time released on May 1 by Eternal Press.

Actor Seth Carbery swears he will never fall in love again, that is until he meets private detective Bethany Snow. Something strange is going on. Seth and other members of the movie cast and crew are receiving threatening letters, but no threat has ever been carried out...yet.

Bethany Snow is sent on location by the Black Agency to investigate and guard Seth Carbery against danger. The case is not what it first seems and even when Bethany thinks it could be over, a new twist means she becomes a target. Seth and Bethany find they can’t keep their hands off each other.

Who is sending the letters and why? Does Seth have a secret admirer or stalker?

Care to share your favorite line(s)?
I have to give you a little excerpt because there are so many lines I like in this

“We have webcams up and the program we use can be set to watch nighttime activity.” She said softly, looking at his perfectly kissable lips.

Seth’s eyes had darkened at her and his gaze was dreamy.

“You’re kidding, what if a cat walked by?” He moved slightly closer to her as they stood by the table.

“Oh the heat signature wouldn’t register enough to set the alarm off” she answered, and she leaned slightly towards him.

Seth looked a little amused. “So I can’t go anywhere at night without you bursting out of your trailer? You do know I work far into the night sometimes?”

He was very close, and Bethany wondered how she could keep her hands off him.

“We wouldn’t have that part of the program set at those times. I can explain everything to you some other time. Right now it’s very late, and you have to be on set tomorrow. I’d better go.”

Seth didn’t want her to go. He was desperate to kiss her. He looked into her blue eyes, and then at her lovely mouth and creamy skin with its sprinkle of freckles. He reached out a hand and gently held her face. He watched her face for signs of rejection.

“It’s already tomorrow,” he said, and he kissed her.

What's your next project?

I’m querying an erotic romance that I have titled The Winter Girl.

Lily Prescott is only just over a relationship break up when she decides to take up residence in a house left to her by her recently deceased grandmother. Her corporate law job takes a back seat as she licks her wounds in the small country town. She looks around the main shopping street and discovers people who will befriend her, but she also runs into the town’s most eligible bachelor and secret bad boy, Starr Forrester.

Loved for his lifelong association with the town, Starr hides his methods for staying single well from his friends. He’s nearly thirty, gorgeous, a designer, owns a business and on the lookout for his ‘Winter Girl’….

Will it be Lily? What is a ‘Winter girl’?

Fun, sex, romance and a little twist of the paranormal, makes this a must read.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

That when I have finished a book I really miss my characters. It’s as if they are real.

What sparked your interest in writing romance?

People and their situations. Meeting people and watching them battle with the love or lack of it in their lives. People and emotions inspire me to write. The complexity of life spurs me to write. I see emotions in people around me all the time, and often they remain unspoken. I think we don’t share ourselves enough,
and are encouraged to hide our true selves.

Lots of my characters have some foundation from real people who have passed through my life. They are composites of those glimpses of people and my imagination.

I find the world harsh. There’s not enough love in it. Lots of people never find love. I write contemporary love stories with happy endings to spread a little lightness around. I always have graphic love scenes in the close to real life stories, because I like to show the reader how the characters feel about each
other deep down. The way they make love always shows their hopes and feelings. I hope that my books do give the reader a lift and a sense of love.

Describe your writing in a sentence.

Cool stories and hot loves scenes with a twist in the tale.

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

Names are weird for me. The characters names have to be right, and then they become real and start appearing. It’s a mix of them telling me and me picking.

Plotter or panster?

A mixture of both.

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

Again sometimes it’s the TV just bubbling in the background to silence. Once I am
really in my story, I don’t hear anything any way.

What are you currently reading?

A light mystery by Rebecca Tope, ‘Malice in the Cotswolds’. It’s just to stop my brain going wild before I try to sleep. Sometimes when I am writing I don’t shut down, my brain wants to write all night.

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

I can’t think of a thing to be honest.

People think I'm weird because...

Do they? I didn’t know that.

Online:
Find Elodie online, http://elodieparkes.blogspot.com
where you can read lots of snippets from my erotic romance novels, meet other authors and read snippets from their books.
http://www.facebook.com/ElodieParkes
http://www.goodreads.com/elodieparkes
http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6448944.Elodie_Parkes/blog
https://twitter.com/ElodieParkes
http://elodieparkes.webs.com/
http://www.manicreaders.com/ElodieParkes/
http://www.theromancereviews.com/EllieP
https://plus.google.com/u/0/114681167004175190514/posts

Elodie’s books are available,
http://www.amazon.com/Millie-Reinvented-ebook/dp/B008H5IF7U

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Millie-Reinvented-ebook/dp/B008H5IF7U

http://www.amazon.com/Two-of-Them-ebook/dp/B008RBJXOI

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Two-of-Them-ebook/dp/B008RBJXOI


http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Horoscope-Writer-ebook/dp/B0094JIIVQ

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0094JIIVQ
Amazon, Bookiejar,
Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, KOBO, Apple iBooks, and Diesel ebooks

Thank you for inviting me to the blog Allison, I enjoyed being here today.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Turncoat's Temptress Release Day

I hope you all read my newsletter. If you didn't because you're too stubborn to sign up for it, shame on you. If you didn't because you didn't know I had a newsletter, shame on you, because it's to your left, smarty pants. It's called reading. You're doing it right now.

There were good things in it. Just so you know. And now you'll never know what kinds of good things, will you? You see, my super-villainy knows no bounds. Mwahahahahaha. I just used 'know' 3 times in 3 sentences. The rules of repetition don't apply here.

I might be a little strung out on high fructose corn syrup right now. Ignore that. I just thought it was kind of important to add some links here so you can find The Turncoat's Temptress easier. Really? Easier than, I don't know, going to Amazon and typing The Turncoat's Temptress? I know how much you guys hate to click. When I see something I'm sure I'm not going to click, sometimes I change my mind and I'm all, okay, I'll bite. And then I click it. It happens more often than you'd imagine.

So if you feel like "biting" the hook I've baited, I'll make it easy for you.

Making it easy wasn't enough? You want proof that it's actually an interesting, amusing distraction from your Internet addiction? I can do that too.


He pushed through the door pistol first. Inside the circle of his protection ward, the goblin held Nora to its chest. Warty gray flesh covered its tall frame and pointy teeth grinned from beneath a bulbous nose hanging over its fat lips. At eight feet tall it dwarfed both him and Nora.
“There you are. We were beginning to worry.” Its cackle sounded like a draft horse walking over gravel. One big, gnarled hand swept across Nora's sable hair. She shuddered at the touch. Basil willed himself to be calm, to keep a rational mind. He wanted to kill the goblin and take her into his arms, reassure her that he wouldn't let anything like this happen again.
The Lighthouser wouldn't keep the goblin from slicing Nora's throat with its ragged fingernails. It needed magic to be undone, not the science of a laser beam. They had old business, he and the goblin. As long as the wards were unbroken or Basil roamed in the daylight, the creature couldn't touch him. It seemed things had progressed into a more difficult stage.
“I was detained by that wretched selkie. Forgive me. You were preparing to devour my lady love, weren't you?”
Nora's eyes widened and he heard her little gasp of breath.
“The selkie is your betrayer.” The goblin smiled, drawing its scaly lips back from green teeth. “Someday I shall talk her out of her real name so that I may coax her from the house as well.”
Suspicion confirmed, Basil made his way down the steps. “She gave you Nora's name, did she?”
“Oh, aye. Wouldn't set foot outside the house, but was eager to relinquish Miss Eleanor Frost to me.” As it spoke her name, it caressed her face. Then it spotted the bread in his arm. “What's that?”
“An offering. A tithe of bread in exchange for the woman.” The gun was useless, so he set it on the top step. His hand free, he removed the bread from the crook of his arm and held it out. The monster licked its lips and took half a step, forcing Nora forward. Her eyes pleaded with Basil to do something more than hold a conversation.
The goblin froze abruptly. A phlegmy growl rose out of its throat. “It's a trick.”
“A business transaction,” Basil corrected. “That's all this is. You have something I want and I have something to trade. No reason for bloodshed.”
Thick drool rolled down its chin. Desire for his offering flickered in its golden eyes. The monster smacked a thick purple tongue against its lips. Shaking its head violently, it lifted Nora's feet from the ground. She let out a sob.
The goblin's arm tightened around Nora's waist. “No! I came for the caibe-sith. You took it and you must have it.”
Basil's heart skipped a beat. “Your fairy spade isn't here. I sent it to the Guardians. Right now they're busy figuring out how it produces its magic.”
“Guardians.” The venom behind the word almost caused Basil drop the bread. “This is our world, Tinwhistle. The Guardians have no right to hunt us, to steal from us. They are no better than us. You are no better.”
Deep down, the goblin's words fanned his own ember of hatred for the Guardians. He snuffed out the thought of what they'd taken from him.


Convinced yet? Then you know what to do. (Hint: scroll up)

Monday, March 25, 2013

It's The Day Before Release and All Through The House

It snowed Friday. I stayed home, nose to the TV as we plowed through season 2 of The Walking Dead. God, I hate that Shane. He's so skeezy. One other things that bugs me is don't any of those people know about zombies? There is no such thing as overkill, and you always, always shoot your loved ones in the head no matter how they die. I don't think I stand much of a chance in the great ZA, except as zombie fodder, but at least I know the rules. Okay, calm down. It's just TV.

I also hit my word count goal for the month of 14,278. I didn't pick it, the counter did. Actually I ended up two words over my goal. Two whole words, y'all. But I'm just over 20k, which was my real goal before Camp NaNoWriMo starts in April. I'm shooting for 40k, which will get me really close to finishing the book. And finishing the series. Yes, I'm still whining about that. *Play Sympathy for the Devil by GNR here*

According to the word tracker chart I'm using, I've written 65,833 words this year. And it's not even half over, kiddies. I feel achieved.

In other news, still pre-editing The Convict and the Cattleman. The word 'to' is the bane of my existence  There were many, many in the MS. After three days of diligent hard work (I'm not joking). There are not so many now. Ha ha, take that 'to'!

In other other news, tomorrow is the day that I went crazy (can I refer to myself in past tense if it hasn't happened yet? Well, yes, I can because the laws of time do not work on this blog) and moved the date for The Turncoat's Temptress up. So tomorrow at this time, it will be available for purchase and I will not be vomiting into a trash can because I'm over that. Mostly. Actually, I've never vomited into a trash can over a book. I bet the cleaning lady appreciates that. Also, I'm not sure whether puke constitutes the right to a new trash can at work. How mortifying would it be to admit to your boss that bad things happened in there? I'll stop talking about that now.

Check your local Amazon page and the B&N page for details tomorrow on how you can purchase your own shiny copy of The Turncoat's Temptress.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Character Profile: Nora Frost

Behind the character:
Name: Eleanor "Nora" Frost
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Blue
Occupation: Teacher/seer

If someone came to me and asked which Hollywood actor would best portray Nora, hands down I pick Natalie Portman.

Nora's name comes from ancient Greek Basileios (sexy, non?). It means "king", but when he's cast out of the Guardians, he's anything but kingly. It's pronounced Bay-zil, not Baz-il. Although his nickname is Baz.

She scored a 20 on the Mary Sue Litmus test. That's the lowest score an L&L character has ever received. I'm thinking I must have filled that out wrong, or they aren't giving enough points for angst because Nora has some serious anger issues regarding her parents.

A couple of my favorite lines staring Nora:

“Miss Frost, your students have just informed me that you've developed a problem with your projector.”
“There's no longer a problem, Miss Slater,” she answered meekly.
The older woman's eyebrows rose. “Your skirt is on fire, dear.”
Nora looked down at her hem, which fed a merry little flame. She beat the singed cover against it, cursing beneath her breath all the while. She raised her eyes to meet her employer's bemused gaze.

Friday, March 22, 2013

The Friday Five - Your Favorite Day of the Week

If it's snowing, I'm not here, but you're in luck. I didn't forget about you on this, the day of Fri. Actually, the day gets its name from Old English meaning 'day of Frigg'. Frigg being a Norse goddess. Which lead us into: Stuff about Fridays

1) Wikipedia says Friday is between Thursday and Saturday. Who knew? In some countries, Friday is the first day of the weekend, followed by Saturday as the last day.

2) In many Christian ruled countries, it's believed there's bad luck in starting a journey on a Friday. Combined with the 13th, it's particularly hazardous.

Not that Venus!
3) Fridays are associated with the planet Venus.

4) In the UK, Friday is sometimes known as POETS Day, which stands for Piss Off Early Tomorrow's Saturday.

5) In Scottish lore, Good Friday is a favorite day for planting potatoes.

That's all I've got for you, kiddies. Now run along. Try to stay bundled in your beds if it's snowy and wintry where you are. If it isn't, I feel deep envy, because someone stole my spring.

Go, be, do.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Character Profile: Basil Tinwhistle

Behind the character:
Name: Basil Tinwhistle
Hair: Black
Eyes: Brown
Occupation: Junior Guardian Agent
Who are the Guardians? A group of men who hunt the preternatural, killing, stealing, and hiding it from the natural world in order to maintain peace and give innocent people who can't sense other things a chance at normal life. The Guardians have vast warehouses full of supernatural artifacts hidden from the world.

If someone came to me and asked which Hollywood actor would best portray Basil, I'd have a hard time choosing between Ian Somerhalder and Colin O'Donoghue.

Basil's name comes from ancient Greek Basileios (sexy, non?). It means "king", but when he's cast out of the Guardians, he's anything but kingly. It's pronounced Bay-zil, not Baz-il. Although his nickname is Baz.

Basil scored a 48 on the Mary Sue Litmus test. He's a big-time Mary Sue. That's the highest score any of my characters from the L&L series has gotten so far. Ouch.

Weird facts about him: I started a rough draft of the third book in the series many moons ago. Basil was supposed to be the hero of that book's boss. He wasn't supposed to have a book at all. His last name in that one: Tenpenny. I actually changed it to Tinwhistle when I started writing the first draft of TcT because I forgot what it was, but I knew there was a tin or ten in it somewhere.

A couple of my favorite lines staring Basil:

The agent cringed, but spat, “Go to hell, Tinwhistle.”
Basil snorted. “All in good time."

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Guest Post - Vonnie Winslow Crist


Speculative Romance

Spring is the perfect time for love whether found in historical romances, contemporary books, or even in speculative fiction. Wait – what do I mean by speculative? Speculative is the term used for fantasy, science fiction, dark fantasy (including vampires and werewolves), and paranormal (including ghosts and spirits). And I love to include love stories in my speculative fiction.

In my speculative short story collection, The Greener Forest, almost every story has a romance at its core. In “Shoreside,” a ningyo (a type of mermaid) has fallen in love with a man and borne him 3 children. When the family visits the local beach and the ningyo goes into the water to save a drowning child, will the ocean call her home or will she choose her land family? In other words, will love win? 

In “The Return of Gunnar Kettilson,” a young woman sits in her darken home waiting to see if her dead husband will return as a zombie. Oh dear, a zombie love story! I promise it's a tender tale where the lines between right and wrong are blurred, and true love conquers evil.

In “Blood of the Swan,” a man goes in search of a healer to save his village from a life-threatening illness. In fulfilling his quest, he falls in love with a swan maiden, only to discover that in order to save his village, he must kill his true love. To read the beginning of this tale of sacrifice and just rewards, click on the link and scroll down the page: http://vonniewinslowcrist.com/stories__more/preds__eds_nominated_work

In “Weathermaker,” a young woman honors her grandfather's wishes and in the process summons a dragon. Unbeknownst to her, she summons the magical creature with a marriage proposal. And if they consummate their marriage, rain will come to an area suffering drought. To read the beginning of a modern love story influenced by ancient myths, click on the link and scroll down the page: http://vonniewinslowcrist.com/stories__more/preds__eds_nominated_work



In my new speculative short fiction collection, Owl Light, (due out in April) I continue to use love as the central theme of my short fiction. But this time, I include ghostly love stories and a re-write of the traditional Rumpelstiltskin tale called, “Feathers.” In my version of the fairy tale classic, the dwarf isn't evil, and he's hopelessly in love with the miller's daughter. Ah, what's more fun to read about then unrequited love? To see a sample: http://vonniewinslowcrist.com/stories__more/happy_tell_a_fairy_tale_day

I also have a young adult fantasy novel, The Enchanted Skean, due out any day. The book is a coming-of-age adventure tale filled with magic, miracles, and mystery that follows 14-year-old Beck Conleth as he journeys from his seaside home to Ulfwood to retrieve his father's bones and a family skean (dagger). The dagger turns out to be magical, and Beck draws the unwanted attention of dark mages, goblins, ogrehunches, and worse. Helped on his journey by Wisewomen, warriors, shape-changers, a dragon, a giant, a troop of thieves, and his best-friend, he realizes there is a developing confrontation between good and evil – and he and his enchanted skean have a role to play. Wait, what about love?
There are several love stories in The Enchanted Skean. But each develops in its own way, since not everyone is a “typical” human. And that's the wonderful part about speculative romance, whether it's a shape-changer who falls for a young man, or 2 bickering warriors who discover love, or an elderly mage and Wisewoman who break the rules and bond for life – anything is possible in a world built on imaginary foundations. Who's to say what's impossible? Who writes the rules of love in a speculative novel?

Why, the author, of course! And this speculative fiction author still believes in true love, good conquering evil (even when the price is high), and happy endings! Be the first to read an excerpt of The Enchanted Skean: http://vonniewinslowcrist.com/books/the_enchanted_skean_excerpt (with a tiny glimpse of one of the couples who will fall in love). And let me know what you think!

Bio: Vonnie Winslow Crist is the award-winning author-illustrator of 2 speculative short fiction collections: The Greener Forest and Owl Light, a YA novel: The Enchanted Skean, 2 speculative eShorts: Blame it on the Trees and For the Good of the Settlement, a children's book: Leprechaun Cake & Other Tales, and 2 myth-based poetry collections: River of Stars and Essential Fables. Mushroom fairy-rings constantly sprout up in her yard, wild birds have been known to land on her shoulders, and Vonnie has found so many 4-leafed clovers that she keeps them in jars.






Monday, March 18, 2013

Guest Post - Anne Glynn

“Free” is supposed to be a highly-effective sales strategy and, if someone was offering cars for free, I’d be driving a 2014 Ford Fusion right this very second. But even as I basked in my new car smell, I’d be wondering, What’s the catch?

Because there’s always a catch, isn’t there? TANSTAAFL -- There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch – is one of Nature’s Laws. Now that you’ve been warned, hey, have I got a deal for you. If you like funky, slightly different, romance stories, I want to give you a copy of my new book.

Free.

There are five novellas in the collection but the only real link between the tales is that they’re carrying my pseudonym. There’s a “hot and smutty” version of the book and a “hot but clean-ish” version of the book (if Pink can do it with her songs, I can do it with my publication).

There are stories about mail order brides, and the Zombie Apocalypse, and a Hollywood movie producer, and the Art of Whore. In one set, Nighttime Tales, Dickens’ Christmas Carol goes all sexy and, in Love Unexpected, we use the same story to have a woman’s obsess about her teeth. Seriously.

Clearly, my writing partner and I didn’t consider the marketplace when we sat down to write. Since we forgot to focus on tough-but-tender cowboys or billionaire baby makers, I’m having a difficult time finding anyone to review L. U. or L.U.: Nighttime Tales. Also, let’s be honest, some self-published authors are not skilled at the writing thing. And who wants to volunteer to read those books?

So I approached the kind and generous Allison M., asking if she’d let me use her site for a guest post. I told her that I was looking for reviews for my romance set, that everyone knew her followers were among the best and bravest of readers but also a little foolhardy. Exactly the kind of crowd I needed for something like this.

Here’s the deal: If you’re interested in playing along, leave a note in the comments below, telling me your preferred e-reader edition -- Kindle, Smashwords, Kobo or PubIt! edition. Let me know which version to send and where to send it. If you’d rather not be quite so public, write me at HiAnneGlynn (at) gmail.com with the same info. I won’t follow-up in any way except to send you a copy of my work.

Your part of the bargain? Once you’ve read the book, share your opinion somewhere in the world. On your blog spot, on Amazon, on Goodreads or LibraryThing, or just with your next door neighbor, the fabulously successful t.v. producer that you know so intimately. You know, the one who’s been wanting to develop a show about Area 69. (Yeah, that story is in there, too.)

If you like my writing, share your thoughts. If you don’t, share those thoughts, too. After all, inquiring minds need to know.

Thanks!

Friday, March 15, 2013

The Friday Five - It's About Leprechauns

I'm still disturbed because it's a sheep,
but I'm all for getting lucky.
*wiggles eyebrows*
Really. I'm swinging dangerously close to letting TTF fall by the wayside these days. I ramble too much, I know. It's hard coming up with five things that aren't really random. So, today, you're getting leprechaun facts because Sunday is St. Patrick's Day. Leprechauns don't have anything to do with that, but it's okay, because they tie in with supernatural things. My blog, my rules. Also, there was already a label for them because of the St. Patrick's Day blog hop I did last year.

1) Leprechauns are always male. I think there'd be a market for leprechaun erotica or something. Maybe I'm just weird. Sure, the legends say they're tiny little men, but I'm thinking bulging muscles and shirtless Black Irish alphas with sultry eyes.

2) Leprechauns have one gold coin in their pots for every year of their life. Hey, if old vampires are sexy, why not leprechauns? Money + muscles. Just sayin'.

I drew this one a table in a
restaurant. The waiter probably
thought I had a Jolly Green
Giant fetish.
3) Leprechauns are apparently amphibious as well as land dwellers. They used to live under the sea, but then they came to Ireland and decided to make their homes there. They're related to the Tuatha de Danann, the 5th race of people to settle in Ireland, according to mythology. They had badass kings, y'all. Supposedly they came from divine ancestors. You see where I'm getting this hot leprechaun thing from? Power + money + muscles. I'm not letting this go.

4) In March 2006, a leprechaun was spotted in a neighborhood in Mobile, Alabama. Apparently, it had no intentions of going all crazy like the one in the movies. No one was able to get a photo of it either.

5) Walt Disney was excited by the idea of leprechauns. He went to Ireland to find them. I guess it was sort of a fruitless trip, but he did end up making a movie called Darby O' Gill and the Little People. I must have missed that one. I did see the Bonanza episode where the little people are running around, confusing the hell out of Hoss. Poor Hoss. But I totally see a Disney/Pixar film about a hot, misunderstood leprechaun who is trapped by a nasty man who steals his gold, leaving him powerless. He joins forces with a pretty young woman and they fall in love as they rescue his gold. When it's time for him to decide whether he wants to return to Leprechaun land, he chooses to stay with her. Or maybe she goes with him. Well, there are still some kinks to work out in the plot. You're welcome, Disney.

Have a great weekend, kids. No pinching!

Author Interview & Giveaway - Elieba Levine


What's your next project?
I am writing a thriller that is set in a broken down castle outside of London.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
I loved setting my main character in different cultures.

Describe your writing in a sentence.
It is direct and in your face.

Do you choose character names or do the characters whisper them in your ears?
I choose the names of my characters . Sometimes their names are chosen for their simplicity because their lives are complicated and vice-versa.

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

What are you currently reading?
The Stain by Philip Roth.


Publisher: Pinnacle (September 26, 2012)
Category: Erotica
Tour Dates: March, 2013
Available in: ebook  196 pages
Amazon || Barnes & Noble

ADVENTURE From New York to Kenya to Katmandu, Jane Perry sets out to explore the world and finds romance and excitement at every turn... PASSION From Bali to Sydney to Hawaii, Jane follows her heart's desires... and leaves behind men who will never forget her... WANDERLUST An erotic odyssey of passion and obsession. Part of a trilogy: Wanderlust, Interludes, Escapes

Praise for Wanderlust:

" If you liked Fifty Shades of Gray you will love wanderlust !! A terrific read !!!! From the first pages to the last i could not put the book down !!"- Les Ereb, Amazon Reviewer

" What a wonderful book! I just can't get over it! The excitement is present page after page! Can't wait to read the next book!"- Mrs A.Yard, Amazon Reviewer

" Wanderlust took me on a captivating, dreamy journey. I enjoyed every moment of it and didn't want it to end.  I look forward to the other books in the series. A real page turner."- Wylee, Amazon Reviewer

" Fun and stimulating, a cruise around the world that I could only do in this character's expression. An absolutely fun read!"- Fbrgddss, Amazon Reviewer

" From the moment I opened the book, I couldn't close it until the last page. It's a good guilty pleasure but it's not you're usual erotic novel, it's full of witty characters, smart dialogues.. A great canvas of lust, empowerment for women, and sexual liberation (And great erotica...)"- Junnnne, Amazon Reviewer

About The Author:

Elieba Levine is a passionate writer and discerning editor who currently resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She has written five fiction novels, a picture book, and an award-winning screenplay. Her extensive world travels greatly influenced the settings in her erotic trilogy Wanderlust, Interludes, and Escapes-which have recently been released in electronic format. She is currently working on her next novel.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/EliebaLevine
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Elieba-Levine/118028291680615?ref=hl

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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Guest Post - D'Ann Lindun

Have you ever started over? Got a new lease on life with a big change? Have you ever risked it all? In both my March releases, the hero needs a new start. For different reasons Cody and Cooper both need to change their life in a big way. Both have risked everything financially to give themselves a fresh start.

From Cooper’s Redemption:
Cooper remounted the gelding and followed the tracks, unable to guess why the rustlers had headed toward his house. As he rode, Cooper faced the terrible truth– his cattle were gone, stolen. He grew angrier each mile. Who had herded his heifers into the upcoming blizzard? And where had they gone?

His heart sank a little lower with each question. Those cattle were his future. He'd scrimped and saved every dime for the last year to buy one hundred heifers to build his ranch. And someone had stolen some of them? Frustrated, his mind continued to work over the puzzle.

He'd have to solve the crime himself; he had no use for the law. And they had none for him.




From Rodeo Man:

Cody Utah rubbed the back of his neck. Putting together a rodeo school was more paperwork than he’d ever imagined. He had to force himself to do it though. The wreck that could’ve killed him had taken his livelihood. Every dime he’d saved was sunk in this ranch, and he had nothing to fall back on. After his accident, the boot and jeans companies once so keen on him had turned their hungry eyes on younger, hotter riders. If he didn’t make a go of this ranch, he wouldn’t have anything.

Not only would he be out of work and broke, his dream would die, too.
He could teach young men more than how to strap themselves on the back of a bull. Maybe there was someone out there like he’d been as a kid, lost and searching for something to turn him around. Squaring his shoulders, he threw off lingering whispers of doubt. He wished his buddy, Luke Greer, would hurry and get here. Luke had agreed to help him get his rodeo school off the ground. As the current hot rider on the circuit, Luke’s name would draw the students his couldn’t bring in.


Bio:
Falling in love with romance novels the summer before sixth grade, D’Ann Lindun never thought about writing one until many years later when she took a how-to class at her local college. She was hooked! She began writing and never looked back. Romance appeals to her because there's just something so satisfying about writing a book guaranteed to have a happy ending. D’Ann’s particular favorites usually feature cowboys and the women who love them. This is probably because she draws inspiration from the area where she lives, Western Colorado, her husband of twenty-nine years and their daughter. Composites of their small farm, herd of horses, five Australian shepherds, a Queensland heeler, nine ducks and cats of every shape and color often show up in her stories!

Find her on the web:
http://dlindunauthor.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/DLindunAuthor
http://www.amazon.com/DAnn-Lindun/e/B008DKL9TU

Monday, March 11, 2013

I'll Never Win a Golden Heart

I mean, which of us will, right? Ever since I've learned about the coveted award, I've always known it wouldn't be me who won it. I'm too scared to enter for starters. There are tons of writers out there who are better than me. I hold my own, but . . . I'm sure I'm not GH material. I admire those who've won the award. Or even finaled. That's amazing. I have a handful of writing awards ranging from high school to 2011.

But I'll never win a GH or so much as final.

You see, they only give those out to authors without contracts.

I'll let you soak that one in for a second.

Ready?

You've heard this story a dozen times. At the end of 2008, after a long dry spell of not writing, I was standing in the shower one day and an idea came to me. A convict woman transported to Australia where she could spend time in a gaol, serving a sentence for thievery, or she could be hired out to work. Choice number two makes for a better story. She's hired by a reluctant grazier who's trying to raise his sister's baby, but doesn't have a clue how. They're at odds from the start, her uncertain about the country, about him, about her role in this strange world. Him because she's young, beautiful, and sure to cause problems on his cattle station. At a time when men were mostly raising sheep out there.

They slowly fall in love, but someone wants to ruin that for them. Before they can join forces and become a family, they have to fight for it.

The first draft of the book? T.E.R.R.I.B.L.E.

The second draft? The one that makes a lot more sense? Left alone on my flash drive for almost 3 years. Unfinished, while I wrote about mystical creatures and alternate histories. I was 80,000 words away from finishing that series when I took The Convict & the Cattleman out of its hiding place.

I read it again and I wrote the ending. I kid you not, about 5,000 words to finish it. Five thousand words I hadn't been able to write in 2010. My original goal for the book was 75k, because of the houses I was looking at way back when. This draft, a mere 66k.

I wrote the ending a few days after the Jano party because although I had finished the novel I was working on then, I was too wound up to sit still and edit. I read it again, this time with the ending. Much, much better than the first draft.

And then D'Ann Lindun announced she was holding a pitch on Word Wranglers to Lyrical Press. And I thought, why not? Worst case, I get a no. Best case, I might get asked for the full. Or maybe a partial, which would be great. So I read the blurb I'd written and reduced it to three lines, the criteria for pitching. I posted it and it wasn't long at all before I had a request for a full and a synopsis.

I'd never been asked for a full manuscript before. A first for me, and a big, exciting deal. By the time I got my synopsis straightened out, because it was based on the first draft, and made another pass through the MS, it was two days after the pitch.

And a month until I heard something back—the hazards of pitching online with dozens of other authors. But there it was, in my Gmail inbox, bold, with the star and the tab marker telling me it was important.

From the subject, RE: Requested submission, there wasn't anything I could tell about it. Good news, bad news, indifferent news. It felt like a lifetime passed before I got the courage to open it. It was probably twenty or thirty seconds. After waiting what seemed like an agonizing year, I had an answer.

I'll never win a Golden Heart because they only give those to authors who aren't contracted.

I breathed in the words 'loved it' like a swimmer starved for air. Loved it! She loved it! I had that moment where it feels like the floor is dropping away and it's a damn good thing I was sitting down. I signed a contract with Lyrical for The Convict & the Cattleman.

People always asked me, “Why didn't you finished it?”

I've had assurances over the years that it was a good book, that everyone who critiqued it liked it. It earned an Honorable Mention in 2010. I always said I couldn't think about it right then. That I thought I'd failed the characters, maybe it was a gateway book to others. Lots of writers have them. Last year I thought about pitching it at the ORA conference, but it didn't feel right.

I don't know what was special about that day in January that I wrote the ending. Why the magic that was in the air then didn't come along sooner. I think it goes to show you can't force a moment. All I know is that, it's not a gateway book anymore. It's a book to believe in.

I'm not going to cry because I'll never win the Golden Heart. I'm going to work my fingers to the bone to make sure C&C is the best it can be for the people willing to take a chance on it.

Monday, March 4, 2013

So I Got A Non-Summons For Jury Duty

It's not a summons and it's not a survey where they ask questions like, would you be interested in serving? There's no optional 'No' box and certainly no 'Please do not contact me with future offers' or 'Remove me from your mailing list' boxes.

It asked for my occupation. I'm thrilled to announce that I put 'romance author' on the occupation line. It's the first time I've ever done that. My husband gave me a dry look that should have set fire to the paper, but unfortunately did not. I was like, what? It's legitimate. I make money as a romance author. I'm registered with the county as a sole proprietor business.

Which is probably what got me into this mess. So much for keeping my head down and staying under the radar. It's enough to make me want to chuck a rock through a post office window just so I can say I committed a crime and keep me off your stupid list. Granted, that would entail some pretty serious jail time, but think about how much free time I'd have to write!

Speaking of writing, over the weekend I hit 12k on the fifth book in the L&L series. It's a bit slow going right now as I'm trying to figure out parts of the plot. Eternal pantser here has no swift ideas about where it's going. I like being surprised, but I do have some scene ideas. One from a pin I saw on Pinterest, that loveable time-sucking website. But it will come much later. Bits and pieces are falling into place, which is always helpful. At least I'm not dead stalled on it, like I've worried about for the last several months. It's not giving me the same fits that the 4th novel did and dragging along. Yet. I suppose when I get to the middle, that's the part that will really test my mettle.

Assuming I don't get picked for jury duty, which would seriously put a damper on my writing. I have all these horrible visions of gruesome images and details stuck in my mind after hearing about a case where some very stupid boys murdered an old couple in our county. That ought to be coming to trial pretty soon. I'd just as soon watch the TV show 48 Hours as participate as I tend to be extremely introverted and unable to make eye contact with strangers and I have nightmares of being tracked down by crazy murderers after watching The Strangers. But thanks for thinking of me. Not.

Friday, March 1, 2013

I Might've Gone Overboard On The Metaphors

I don't have a Friday Five for you today. To be honest, I didn't even try to come up with anything. I'm busy with other details. The counter on the sidebar says its 45 days until The Turncoat's Temptress releases. I have mixed feelings about this. Not about the number of days, because you can't argue with time. That would be pointless. Sounds like something I would do, but nevertheless . . . pointless.

I'm excited. I still have a lot to do. Working on some guest posts and interviews. Gotta pick an excerpt. Gotta convert the document into a great file for e-readers. Need to set up the works on KDP and PubIt!. I should schedule some facts about the book to go out on Twitter and the G+ page I set up for the series.

I'm also nervous. You'd think with two other books living in the wilds of the Interwebz, I'd cheerfully stuff this one in its cage, drop the cage near its future pack mates, open the hatch and let it run free. Weird metaphor?

I have another one for you.

Lately I've been riding the 5-star review pony and I plan to ride it till its back breaks. Whatever do I mean, and how could I be so cruel? Well, you remember me being less than tickled over that 3-star review. It had some okay things to say about the book, but it ultimately dragged my rating down and appears to have stunted sales a hair. So when the book barrage for The Sky Pirate's Wife rolled around, the reviewers had nothing but nice things to say about it. Well, mostly. Enough to make me feel pretty damn good about where my writing career is wildly careening on the edge of a cliff filled with murky water and crocodiles going.

On the tidal wave of endorphins that flooded my brain Wednesday, I very bravely queried another house with my historical romance. The editorial staff requested the full MS. Uh, awesome? Yes, yes it is. Over the last four years I've suffered from a serious love/hate relationship with that novel. It was the one that bumped me back into writing, but I hid it away because I felt like I couldn't fix those broken characters. I fixed them. Ah, the sweet, slightly burned smell of triumph. Upon reading it again in January, I actually felt that it wasn't as bad as my evil, evil shoulder devils led me to believe. I think I might have a some kind of mental illness that convinces me I'm horrible when maybe I'm not as bad as I suspect. I wonder if they make a pill for that?

Upon reviewing the MS, I thought it would be wonderful to maybe share it with the world. And if the houses I've chosen feel it isn't right for them, well, I'm hardly afraid to add it to the wild, snarling pack of crazy books that are already preening and prowling the self-published section of the Interwebz.

Wait, did this post confuse you as much as it did me? Let me summarize in English.
1) I had some excellent reviews for SPW (and one I forgot about for THL from author S.J. McMillan).
2) I subbed to two houses this month and got requests for full MSs from both.
3) I forgot to mention this because I was metaphoring all over the place: I've been invited to speak about my writing at the Webster County Library on March 19 at 7 pm. You're totally invited to come see me if you can. Other authors there will be Tierney James and Kymberly Cook. I know they'll be there for sure.
4) I was quite pleased with sales over the last two months. Thanks, you guys.

I only thought of four things, so I guess you almost got a Friday Five. Close enough.

Edit: No, no, wait! I've got it! There's still time to enter my giveaway from the BB. So, 5) Just follow this link to enter and you could possibly win a $10 Amazon gift card and a cool steampunk necklace.