Monday, November 30, 2009

Loving Romantic Suspense

Hi there- I’m JM Griffin, and I’m excited to be Hannah’s guest blogger today. It will be fun to share my love of romance, suspense and humor with you.

For me, there is nothing better than escaping into a world where you become intrigued by characters that can make you feel their joy, sadness, laughter and romance. Where you try to figure out who did the dirty deed. I must say though, I enjoy a healthy dose of humor laced with a good measure of irony mixed into the story, too. Especially since real life is often all too serious.

Romance has to be an integral part of the story, whether it is sweet or of the hot and heavy variety, it simply has to be there. After all, isn’t that what romantic suspense is about? Mysterious happenings fueled by a romantic encounter between the characters, a great story filled with spine tingling events driven by attraction too overpowering to resist. The sort of attraction that makes you hold your breath and squirm in your seat.

Curling up on the sofa sipping a glass of wine, munching Hershey kisses and covered with my comfy blanket, a good book is the best way I know of to remove oneself from the strife of everyday life. Sink down and enjoy the story, wile away the time in a brief encounter with strong characters and a rich suspense ridden story.

Find out more about JM griffin and her humorous romantic suspense novels at

Thanks Hannah & Happy Reading Everyone!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Why I Love Romance novels

My name is Maureen Fisher, and I am thrilled to be a guest on Hannah’s blog. I’m here today to celebrate romance fiction.

Here’s the thing. I love romance. I love the loyalty. I love the treachery. I love the courage. I love the frailty. I love the hope. I love the despair. I love the honesty. I love the deception. I love the tears. I love the laughter. Call it total escapism. In a world of growing uncertainty, constantly bombarded with news about disasters, tragedies, wars, murders, deaths, and corruption, I crave an antidote. A world of wonder, a world of falling in love, of unlimited possibilities, of overcoming impossible odds, and of living happily ever after is more to my liking. What better way to escape than to curl up in front of a fire with a cup of tea, a chocolate brownie, and a good romance novel?

Romance novels are addictive. Here’s the thing. I’m a psychologist wannabe, a voyeur of the human psyche, an emotional junkie. I suck up internal conflicts like a Hoover sucks up dust -- emotions, feelings, and emotional baggage that characters drag around, providing their motives and affecting their actions. A good romance novel is a psychological jigsaw puzzle that feeds my craving for an emotional fix.

And if anyone asks me whether I think men should read romance fiction, my answer is an unqualified YES. How can any man in his right mind resist learning about feminine secrets--what we love, what we hate, what turns us on, what turns us off, in short, what makes us tick? Romance fiction provides unlimited opportunities for men to plumb the depths (so to speak) of the mysterious world of Venus. Who knows? In the process, they might even reach new insight on Martians.

I leave you with a visual. Picture a man sprawled in a chair at the airport, waiting for his flight, briefcase and laptop propped at his feet--a manly man, a man who is truly comfortable in his own skin, a man who has tossed aside his business report documenting recent financial trends and who is dabbing his eyes, happily engrossed in the latest Nora Roberts bestseller.

After all, only real men dare to read romance fiction.

Find out more about Maureen Fisher and her paranormal romantic suspense, The Jaguar Legacy, at

Thanks again, Hannah, and happy romance reading everyone.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Christmas Memories

Oh, my! I get to be a guest on Hannah’s blog. Thank you so much for having me over. Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Anne Hope, and I’m here to talk about that famous holiday looming just up ahead. No, I don’t mean Thanksgiving. I’m talking about Christmas.

I must admit, I have a great fondness for Christmas. Not the over-congested stores, the desperate shoppers, the mad rush to find that perfect, last-minute gift. Not the snow-dusted trees, though they can be a lovely sight. Not even the numerous family get-togethers that are usually customary around this time of year. What I love is what this holiday represents—love, togetherness, hope.

When I was a kid, Christmas was a magical time. The air itself seemed to tinkle with possibilities. Everything was fresh and new and sprinkled with a mystical energy that made my skin hum. But as I grew, I lost touch with that. Christmas became another chore, another holiday I needed to survive. Like that old miser Scrooge, spouting the famous words, bah, humbug, I forgot what this holiday was meant to inspire.

Then, a few years ago—just a day after Christmas—my son was born, and I remembered. Hope and love flooded my veins. The world suddenly sizzled with promise. Since then, I have seen Christmas through my children’s eyes. I feel their anticipation, experience their happiness as the holiday draws near, feed off their energy. Christmas songs lift my spirits and give flight to my imagination.

It seems only fitting that my debut novel, Where Dreams Are Made, should be set at Christmastime. My hero, Daniel, is a scarred, reclusive toymaker, living a lonely existence on a quiet island. He, too, has forgotten what it feels like to have hope and experience joy. It takes the heroine, Jenny, to open his eyes to the possibilities. Jenny’s childlike innocence sparks something deep inside him, teaches him that each and every one of us can infuse our lives with a small dose of magic, should we choose.

So, in the coming weeks, as the stores begin to bustle and the tinsel begins to fly, please try to remember what this holiday meant to you as a child. Remember the excitement, the thrill and the enchantment. And if you happen to be in the mood for an emotional, romantic read, curl up in front of the fireplace with a copy of Where Dreams Are Made. I deeply hope Jenny and Daniel’s story warms your heart the way it did mine.

Where Dreams Are Made is available at Samhain Publishing and at all major bookstores, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders and Chapters. For more information, please visit me at

Thanks again, Hannah, and Happy Holidays everyone!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


I had to ask for a week's extension  on my deadline.  Took my cat Spooky to the vet because she was going bald on her back end - very attractive.  Fleas.  The vet was combing through her fur and it looked like the poor thing had some nasty skin condition.  We didn't actually find a flea but she found what she called flea poop.  Who knew there was such a thing as flea poop?  So she got a few shots added to the usual round of rabies, etc. shots and a smear of flea preventer on her neck.  As did the other two I had managed to corral.  Asked the hubby if he had noticed any fleas as they always seem to go for his ankles and he said no but I am now on a spray, powder, wash, vacuum binge to make sure.  The heat is on now and that could make them nice and comfy so kill them now, I say.  The vet did say that it has been a bad year for fleas.  Obviously bad enough that flea collars just didn't get the job done.

So Hartley and Alethea are only going to get sporadic attention for a few days.  As I work to kill the fleas my overactive imagination now envisions massing for an attack beneath the sofa cushions I am thinking about what to do with Sir Simon Innes for the next Murray novel.  Have to get the synopsis and first chapter done for that by the end of the month.    Sir Simon needs someone special and that someone is who I am concentrating on.  Someone who has the wit and strength to deal with a man who spends a lot of time figuring out crimes.  And just what crime will she be in the middle of so that the two of them meet?  There's a puzzle that needs to be carefully solved.  After all - being a Murray lady - she will have hordes of brothers, sisters, cousins, etc. who could help her so she has to have a very good reason to be depending upon Simon.
Coming up with good reasons for someone to be in trouble and not asking help from their family is a not easy.  It's going to take a lot of thought.  Guess the hubby will have to put up with me being glassy-eyed and distracted for a while.

And after that is cleared off my desk I will settle down to write the next vampire tale for another anthology coming in Fall 2010.  But can't let that enter my head too much or I'll be having Simon and his lady fighting the creatures of the night and that won't do.   Now, of course, that idea had stuck itself in my head and my mind is trying to run away with it so I think I will go and strip all the beds and wash everything.  Nothing like housework to dull the brain.

IF HE'S SINFUL will be for sale November 24th according to Amazon.  I will post a teaser here soon.  Off to fight the demon flea now.  Ta

Monday, November 2, 2009


Yes, the great evil deadline is looming over my head.    If you don't see a posting here for a while it's because I am glued to my computer trying to finish typing in my manuscript and editing it.  I am to have it ready by Nov. 15th.  My own plan as I don't want to be dealing with a deadline over the holidays.  There is another MacNachton tale I have to have in right after the holidays but it is a short story so won't be quite so needy.

My biggest problem is that I can't seem to break the need to write everything out by hand.  I am not the best typist, either, so that 95 - 100K manuscript takes some time to type in.  I have tried to write on the computer but it doesn't work well.  For one thing I can't type as fast as I think and when the words are there in my head I need to get them down on paper ASAP before they leak out of my brain and vanish.  I also can't seem to connect well with my characters and story when I do the work on the computer and a writer needs to always be in touch with her characters.  When pressed I can write out by hand the first half of the chapter and then finish it on the computer.  By the time I've got that half typed in I've caught the flow, so to speak, and can continue.

So, I am now typing in everything I have handwritten with the occasional break from the computer to scribble down some more.  The story is almost done because Hartley and Alethea finally straightened themselves out and are panting after each other as they should but the typing of it in looms before me like some huge mountain I need to climb.  The hubby has already been warned that I will be glued to the computer until the fifteenth.  Might take a brief break to bake him a cake for his birthday on the fourteenth and had better expect that work will be disturbed by the family trotting up to congratulate him on aging.  Also have my publicist/friend coming down on Thursday, dinner out on Friday, and an all-day conference on Saturday so these next few days will be a little hectic.  If nothing else, I have to pause here and there to do a little housekeeping.  My main plan is to have a lot to type in so that I can do that when she is busy doing something else, like checking her e-mails.

The other thing that is currently looming over me is - the ending.  Sigh.  I hate endings.  It'd be so nice if one could get away with just writing - and they lived happily ever after.  The end.  But, no, nothing's ever that easy.  I always sweat over the ending.  Oh, I know how it ends, just not exactly how to write it out so it's completely satisfying and doesn't just wind down.  That requires a lot of thought, sometimes rewrites, and always a little editing.  Those last few sentences can be like a slow bleeding.

So - back to typing and writing and sweating out the ending.  Before I was published and faced with deadlines, it wasn't such a problem.  One worked when one could and played around with the story as one wished to.  Then, when it was done, it got sent out and the wait began.  Come to think of it, deadlines are better than sitting around wondering if some unknown person at an editor's desk will like or reject what you sent.  So I will stop whining and get back to work.  I'm sure I'll pop up here from time to time in the next 2 weeks as I'm not always ready to write before noon.  Not a morning person.  Sometime inbetween letting the cats out, cleaning the litter boxes, feeding the birds, checking my e-mail, and all those other time consuming chores I will probably stop in to babble from time to time.  Wish me luck.  November 15th isn't all that far away.