Monday, August 6, 2012

Eggs-cetera by JoMarie DeGioia

First I’d like to thank Hannah for inviting me. It’s so nice to be here! I thought long and hard about what to blog about today, and then just decided to give my poor brain free rein. Dangerous.

Okay, so like many of my writer friends I’m trying to juggle a busy writing schedule. I’m published in Historical Romance, published under another name in Erotic Romance and aspiring to be published in Young Adult fiction. I hop around among genres, channeling different personalities and sensibilities and, let’s face it, sensuality-levels. I also have a lot going on at home.

The kids are in the process of trying to sell their house up north, and have moved in with me here in Florida. With their adorable baby son and three cats. So we’re now a couple with one college-aged daughter still at home, our other “out of the nest” daughter back inside the nest with her husband, and my baby grandson Anthony. So all of my eggs are now in one basket.

Anthony is a doll and a half and the apple of his Gammy’s eye. He’s also a lot of work, which years had given a nostalgic sepia tone since raising my daughters. I watch him often, since my son-in-law is going to school. I also work at the bookstore several days a week and try to remain active in my local RWA chapter. They say there are enough hours in the day but maybe the earth’s rotation is quicker here in Florida, lol.

I’m currently enjoying the recent release of a book near and dear to my heart, More Than Passion from Lachesis Publishing. It’s the rewrite and reboot of my very first Historical Romance, and taking a breather from writing to virtually press some hands is refreshing! I’m hoping to get the release date soon of another Historical Romance from Lachesis, More Than Charming. We’ve been handling the edits but those are winding down. Yeah, I didn’t even touch on the subject of editing in my various genres. Darn that earth’s rotation anyway!

If this post seems a little scrambled, eh hem, that’s not a mistake. While my writing energizes me, when it’s not sapping my strength, I get more than enough love and support from my basket of eggs at home. But I have to say, after collapsing into bed after another long day of watching that now-walking grandson, I’ve come to a conclusion.

There’s a reason eggs get old.

Thanks again, Hannah. I’d love to hear from readers, too! Please email me at or visit my website,

Read an excerpt of More Than Passion and Prideand Fire. Pick up copies at Kindle, BN, Bookstrand, Fictionwise, iBookstore and ARe

Monday, July 30, 2012

The “Grand Estate” Fantasy and Pushing Boundaries, by Gail Eastwood

Who doesn’t love the fantasy of being ultra-rich and living “the life” on a fabulous estate with servants at your beck and call? At least once in a while? I think that fantasy fuels the appeal of the classic “house party” romances you often find set in Regency England, and in mystery fiction, too. My second Regency e-book reissue, An Unlikely Hero, is a house-party story, and I confess I really loved creating Rivington, the grand ducal estate where the story takes place. The challenge, of course, was to put my own twist on that sort of story, and in doing so I ended up pushing boundaries, too –not intentionally, mind you, it just seems to happen!

An Unlikely Hero is the sequel to A Perilous Journey, which I wrote about here recently. I want to thank Hannah for having me back again –especially so soon! Readers who loved the heroine’s brother in that first book kept asking me for his story, but it took a while (two years) for me to discover the beautiful identical twin sisters who stand at the heart of the sequel. I wrote two other romances in the meantime (being reissued later this year). The daughters of the Duke of Roxley, Venetia and Vivian, seemed to have it all –beauty, brains, wealth, rank. The simple fact that they were “beyond the reach” of an impoverished viscount like Gilbey Kentwell was not enough of a story problem for me, there had to be something more. And sure enough, it turned out they were hiding a secret –a disability that even in modern times people still sometimes try to hide. Add a blackmailer and –then- I had a story!

The question was, could I balance the romantic elements, the grand estate fantasy, and the mystery subplot, and not have the realism of a character with a greatly misunderstood medical condition dash it all like a bucket of cold water? Author Laura Kinsale famously wrote a hero who had suffered a stroke, but her book wasn’t set in a Regency house party, and few of us have her amazing talent. I wanted to make a social comment with my story, too, but knew it had to stay in the background.

There’s plenty of temptation for social comment any time we do a “grand estate” setting for a story –beneath all the grandeur there’s the reality of a caste system that rankles our modern American sensibilities if we forget to check them at the fictional door. I recently visited a couple of the fabulous “Golden Age” mansions in Newport, R.I. with fellow Regency author and friend Elena Greene, and it really made us pause when we thought about the army of 40 servants who had been employed to keep one family’s great estate running in style!

Do you enjoy escaping to a fictional grand estate? Like house-party stories? Have any favorites? Or do you find it hard to keep track of all those “guest” characters? What about stories with characters who have physical challenges? Does a medical disability turn you off in a romance, or do you find it can make a character more sympathetic and real?

An Unlikely Hero was critically acclaimed, a Holt Medallion finalist and a “Top Five Regency” pick from Under the Covers. I will give away a copy to someone who leaves a comment, by random drawing of names, so please do join the conversation, and be sure to leave your email address so we can contact you if you win! And thanks again to Hannah for having me as her guest!

Gail Eastwood Bio:

The award-winning author of seven Regency romances published 1994-2002 by Signet/NAL/Penguin, Gail Eastwood gave up writing for ten years to take care of family members with health issues. Now her books are being reissued for the e-book market and she has started work on a new one. For more information, visit Gail on Facebook or her website:

Buy links:


AN UNLIKELY HERO story synopsis:

Pried from his books at Cambridge, scholarly Gilbey Kentwell, Viscount Cranford, is a reluctant guest at a house party featuring many of the highest ranking members of the ton. Trying to meet the expectations of everyone around him is challenge enough for his wits. His best friend Nicholas, son of the Duke of Roxley, has invited him particularly to help keep an eye on Nicholas’s twin sisters “the lamb and the lioness”, who are meant to choose husbands from among the gathered guests. The Duke himself has made it clear that Gilbey is not an eligible parti and must keep his distance from the beautiful twins. The suitors among the guests have made it clear they don’t appreciate any perceived competition from Gilbey. But Fate seems to have other ideas, landing him repeatedly in the twins’ path and the unwanted center of attention. When he discovers the identical sisters are hiding a deep secret and that a blackmailer seeks to thwart the purpose of the party, how can a hero worth his salt not step in to help them? What help is there for his heart, irretrievably lost to a twin he can never have?


The path Venetia had taken was much narrower and obviously less traveled than any that had been used for the race. Ducking tree branches, Gilbey guessed that she had chosen a shortcut in an attempt to catch up to the main group. He did not think she knew that he was following.

The path led generally downward and Gilbey was careful to keep his weight centered. He was not at all prepared to pull up quickly when he and old Jonquil rounded a curve and nearly ran into Venetia’s horse. The roan was standing riderless by a fallen tree across the path.

What had happened was clear at once. The ground sloped downhill rather steeply on the other side of the tree trunk, and the horse had obviously refused the jump. Unprepared and riding a bit too fast, Venetia had sailed over it without him. She sat hatless in a muddy pool at the bottom of the decline with leaves sticking to her habit and her hair halfway unpinned. To Gilbey’s relief she did not appear to be injured.

Gilbey dismounted. Pushing some branches out of the way, he climbed over the fallen tree and started down the leaf-strewn slope toward her. He spied her hat and retrieved it from a bush, brushing more leaves from the lace veil. He noticed that there was a rip in it. In the meantime, he heard Venetia mutter a few rather unladylike phrases.

“Forget something?” he asked as he reached the bottom. “I noticed your horse decided not to join you.”

“It would have to be you that came along,” she said ungraciously.

“It was me or no one.” He grinned. “Where on earth were you going? Besides down this hill, I mean.”

She did not answer.

“I found your hat. Looks a little the worse for wear.” He held it out to her and she jammed it onto her head.

She looks ready to spit, he thought, and reflected that he had never seen her angry before. The fact was, he thought she looked particularly charming, with her hair coming loose and a smudge of mud on her nose. This was the real Venetia, not the perfectly groomed beauty he was used to seeing, and he liked what he saw.

“This happens to be a shortcut,” she said finally. “I lost my hat earlier and had to go back for it. I wanted to catch up.”

He waved a hand at her sitting in the puddle. “Looks like an odd way to go about it, if you ask me. But then you didn’t ask, did you? I’m certain you know best.”

He turned and started back up the slope.

“Where are you going?”

“To get Jonquil. I want to show her that there is a place to land on the other side of that tree.”

“You aren’t going to help me up?”

“Oh, I doubt if I have enough wit to do that.”

Retribution might not be gentlemanly, but it tasted very sweet. Behind him he heard the sounds of her struggling to get up.

“Ooh, you wretched man! I hate you!”

Something struck him just below his shoulder blades. He put a hand back and brought away gloved fingers covered with mud. The little vixen! He turned and saw her standing there, her heavy skirts soiled , wet, and clinging to her. As she bent down to scoop up another handful of ammunition, he bounded back down the hill.

“Is it full-fledged war, then?” he asked, grabbing her arm. “Flinging insults is no longer enough?”

But something happened the moment he touched her. He did not feel at all warlike. “Rumor has it that you think I am witless and utterly boring.” He stared down into her beautiful eyes, searching for the truth.

“Well, I –”

She did not finish. The very air around them seemed charged. In her eyes he thought he saw a message quite different from anything she had said.

“Tell me if you find this boring, then,” he said softly, his voice husky. Quite ignoring the mud that covered her, he slipped his arms around her and brought her against him. He found her sweet lips and proceeded to kiss her as thoroughly as he knew how.

Monday, June 18, 2012

What is Magic by Brynna Curry

*Brynna is giving away a print copy of Charmed (Elemental Magic Anthology Vol. 1) containing Earth Enchanted, To Take Up the Sword, and Wait for the Wind to one commentor today. Winner will be drawn June 19th at 4:00pm CST and announced within the comment section of this post. To enter, please leave your name and email address with your comment.

What is magic? Does the word conjure images of wild, wicked spells, a tangible force that can both save and destroy? A stranger’s kindness? Or do you think of the changing leaves of Fall, the Spring flowers that seem to appear overnight? Perhaps magic is like beauty, forever in the eyes of the beholder, different for everyone.

For Devin McLoch, magic has always meant power. As a phoenix— the physical embodiment of pure fire— Dev used his gift to protect those he loved until he was betrayed by his cousin Daemon. Exiled from Scotland by his own magic, he lashed out in frustration. Devin became a thief and mercenary to survive, amassing his fortune, but always living by one simple creed. An it harm none.

A thousand years, later he’s turned away from darker pursuits to lead a life of peace, protecting those he loves and considers part of his clan. He enjoys teaching magic to Allaina and the other Corrigan children, but something is missing in his life. Ari

Bound by magic, the sorceress is the one woman he can never forget. Ari must be given a chance to change, to accept her heart and now his. Over time he’s watched Arianne Farrell in the reflections of ancient gems, felt her calling to him in dreams.

But his Ari has a dark power of her own, secrets she keeps locked up tight for fear of being betrayed again by those she loves. According to Liv Roarke’s (Earth Enchanted) legend she tried to destroy her sister, but Ari’s generosity and kindness tell a much different story.

The Elemental Magic series comes to a close with Fire’s Ice. It’s a little bittersweet to give up characters that have been with you so long, but I’m pleased with the way things turned out.

Come with me to a castle in the Scottish highlands where there is magic in the air, a fire burning in the hearth and a fat black cat named Tessa stretched out on the rug at Devin's feet. We've been waiting for you.

Author Bio: Paranormal romance and romantic suspense author Brynna Curry is a lifelong believer in the importance of reading. She enjoys the writing process, helping others hone their craft by lending her time to review books, critique manuscripts and serving as a contest judge. She loves hearing from her readers.

When she isn’t writing, she’s often found haunting the library for new books to read, at the park with her children, or just spending an quiet evening at home with her husband Jackie watching old westerns on TV. She makes her home in North Alabama where the history is rich with music and culture, forests and lakes are abundant and beautiful, and every day is another adventure.

Visit her at


Twitter: @BrynnaCurry!/brynnacurry

Buy Links




Fire’s Ice

Blurb: Ultimate power, or endless love?

Born the son of a Scottish laird a thousand years ago, but now trapped by his cousin's spell, Devin McLoch has seen countless battles and death. The erstwhile thief has turned away from darker pursuits to lead a life of peace, protecting those he loves and considers part of his clan. However, there is one woman he can never forget, who must be given a chance to change, to accept her heart and his.

Arianne Farrell is just as dangerous and intoxicating as her power. Imprisoned in an ancient stone dance more than a thousand years ago, her only chance at freedom from the spell is through love--a love she denied. When Devin asks for her aid to save another from imminent death, she realizes there is more at stake than just her freedom or her heart.

WARNING: Two stubborn sexy wizards using magic with no bounds, scorching love scenes, and happy ever after. Ever play with fire?

Excerpt #1 – (Steamy)

Dark, rich chocolate colored bedding echoed the tile framing the fireplace. Dainty furniture, curved legs and soft cushions, yet the poster bed was large and sturdy. She’d seen it before while she visited his dreams. Definitely Devin’s room. And remembering didn’t help the ache snaking through her body.

Walking into the en suite, the first thing to catch her eyes was the floor-to-ceiling mirror covering one wall. Arianne studied her reflection. Her long, dark curls were mussed and tangled around a pale face. Her lips were pink and just a bit swollen from Devin’s kiss. The only thing she wore was a long white shirt. Sniffing the collar, she smelled the crisp, clean fragrance clinging to the material. His shirt, not conjured. Devin didn’t wear cologne, but the scent of his soap always stayed with her. He must have changed her clothes. What else had she missed?

Because I love you. Men were ever a puzzle. Still, hadn’t she known? The dreams they shared had changed over time, slow and sweet instead of hot and fierce. A softness came over his face each night she visited his sleep, the same one she had seen this morning. Just that look was enough to have her quaking inside.

She found a bottle of bubble bath on the side of the tub. Thanks to Devin's dreams and Allie's influence, she had knowledge of modern conveniences such as indoor plumbing. Turning the faucet on hot, Arianne poured two capfuls under the stream and let the water run until the big round tub filled. Reluctantly, she unfastened the shirt buttons and let the material fall away to the floor. Slipping into the frothy bubbles, she sighed and let the reality of her situation sink in.

I am finally out of that wretched circle. True enough, but she was still in a prison of sorts. One with running water, walls, food that didn’t taste like air, and a sexy male witch bent on driving her to frustration. Not so bad, all things considered.

Being trapped in the stone dance didn’t mean she hadn’t noticed changes in the world around her for a thousand years. She tipped her feet out of the water, waved toward them, and turned her toenails a bright fiery red. Allie brought her little things from the modern world. Mostly books filled with sweet love stories; more than a few of them brought a blush to her cheeks. What would Ryan think of his daughter’s taste in novels? Better not to head down that road. Allie had dreams of being a writer like her aunt and uncle. If what she liked to read was any indication, she’d write hot. Very hot. Speaking of hot, a soft tapping sounded at the door. Her maddening laird had returned

“Okay in there?” His voice sounded hesitant. “Breakfast is ready.”

Time to ruffle the phoenix’s feathers a bit. “There is no need to be shy, Devin. You can come in.”


The sound of splashing water rippled past his ears. Temptress.

Knowing Ari was just on the other side of the door, naked and wet, willing to succumb to every fantasy he could imagine, was a torment in itself. All he had to do was accept her sultry invitation and toss aside his plan. But she deserved a sweet slide into love, not the wild, mad rush of pleasure he craved. One palm rested on the door of its own volition, ready to comply. Not yet. Now, if only his traitorous body would listen to his heart. “That depends, sweetheart.”

“Oh?” she called out from the other side. “On what?”

Devin chuckled at the line, but he just couldn’t resist teasing her. “What are you wearing?”

She laughed. “Bubbles. Lots of bubbles. Share them with me.”

He saw it so clearly. Ari’s creamy skin peeking through the frothy bubbles. Open, welcoming. Need clawed under the skin, screamed at him. Why the hell not? Feeling a quiver of desire vibrate through his body, he called her bluff. “And what would you have me do with those bubbles? Hmm, Ari?”

“Oh, I am sure you could think of something. Something deliciously wicked. I have shared your dreams. I know your fantasies, Devin.”

Oh, you have no idea. His mind made up, Devin opened the door.

She lay in his huge garden tub, feet propped up on the rim, eyes closed, waterfall of black hair piled on top of her head. A soft smile graced her face. So she was enjoying their teasing banter. “Have you changed your mind and decided to join me?”

“Maybe.” No reason he couldn’t push them both to the edge. Pulling the t-shirt over his head, Devin tossed it into the corner. He laid his cellphone on the sink--out of danger--kneeled by the edge of the tub and dipped one hand into cooling water, using his magic to heat it.

“Mmm. Nice.”

He let his voice drop to a whisper as he leaned close to her ear. “I want to slick my hands over every inch of your skin until you shiver from the heat.” His fingers found the back of her knee in the water and trailed higher along the inside of her thigh. “And then…”

A soft “Devin” slipped from her lips as Arianne’s eyes flew open. “And then…”

Excerpt Link:

Monday, June 4, 2012

Why Paranormal Romance Are Teen Boys Not Enough?

A few years ago, New York was saying that the paranormal market was dead.  They mentioned the market was gutted.  No one was interested in anymore paranormal books.

Boy, were they wrong!

My first exposure to a paranormal romance had to be Buffy the Vampire Slayer back in the later 1990s:

Yes, the writing is amazing.  So is the dialogue.  What stands out to me is even through Buffy is tough she had one huge weakness: her love interests happen to be vampires. This is all kind of ironic considering she’s a vampire slayer.

It seemed any human love connections she made, failed.  Big time.  What can we say?  The chemistry between Angel and even later Spike, another vampire, is steamy hot.  Now it’s a classic and Joss Whedon, has continued the series in comic book format for a whole new generation to love.

I admit it.  I love a good paranormal romance.

Some great examples of some other paranormal finds:

Vampire Diaries. 

This TV series is based on the best selling YA series by L. J. Smith.  In this series, Elena, falls for the charms of not one but two brothers who just happen to be vampires. The chemistry between the three crackles with sexual tension not only on the screen but in the books as well.  Watch an episode and tell me you’re not under the spell of Ian Somerhalder’s portrayal of Damon.


The war against fallen angels and humanity has a new heroine. Violet is part Buffy the Vampire Slayer with her kick-ass abilities but also very much human with her feelings towards her hot mentor Lincoln. The chemistry between the two of them is hot. Lincoln happens to be a Grigori and can't have a relationship with her. Then the mysterious Phoenix ups the whole stream factor. He brings intensity when he's around Violet.  I don’t blame Violet in her struggle between the two.

Obsidian: The Lux series

Daemon might be stand-offish and a total jerk but he’s beyond hot.  He’s also an alien.  Katy has just moved next door and her first encounter with Daemon is disastrous.  Then all changes with a touch.   Let’s just say this series is amazing.  I could see why Katy came under Daemon’s spell.


This is a story where a witch and a warlock meet and fall for each other. Problem is they are sworn enemies. Kling casts her own spell with characters that are real and multi-layered. The tension and chemistry between our heroine and hero sizzles.

Can you tell I love these stories?


There’s also chemistry between Dylan, the boy next door but when Mark gets on the scene, well, forget it.  She’s totally under Mark’s spell which might not be the best decision she’s made.

Do you think the appeal of YA paranormal romance might be the whole fantasy of the beyond hot boy?  Why the appeal?

For an excerpt of CROSSED OUT and to pick up a copy at Kindle, BN, Kobobooks 

Monday, May 14, 2012

What would YOU do? by Gail Eastwood

Thank you so much, Hannah, for this opportunity to visit with your friends and talk a bit about A PERILOUS JOURNEY, the e-book reissue of my award-winning first novel!

Fiction is full of desperate characters pushed to do extraordinary things. How they meet the test measures their courage and strength, and pushes them to grow. That’s what great stories are all about. Do you ever wonder if you would do the same things as the characters you read about, in the same situations? Do you ever yell at your favorite TV or movie characters when you think they are making a mistake?

In A PERILOUS JOURNEY, Gillian Kentwell is faced with a future that horrifies her. Given no alternatives, she chooses to run rather than meekly accept it. Of course, in 1816 Regency England, travel was much more hazardous than it is today, and Gillian’s choice has some dire consequences. She is lucky her twin brother Gilbey decides to go with her, but they are both inexperienced and in trouble before their first day ends! When the Earl of Brinton aids them, they have no idea who he is. Gillian and her brother have plenty of arguments over how they should go on and whether to accept more help from him even after they learn his identity.

Gillian’s distrust begins to melt as her attraction to Brinton heats up, but there are more secrets to learn about the mysterious earl, just as there are more surprises and troubles in store for all three travelers as they try to reach Scotland and outwit their pursuers.

A PERILOUS JOURNEY is more than a “road” story set in the Regency –it’s also a “coming-of-age” story as Gillian journeys into womanhood and learns the meaning of love. Would you make the same choices she does? Have you ever had to make a decision that meant giving up everything you’d ever known? If so, how did your decision turn out?

A PERILOUS JOURNEY was first published as a Signet Regency Romance in 1994, my debut book. Now it’s available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iTunes as a newly issued e-book under the Intermix imprint from Penguin/NAL. Gillian’s brother’s story, AN UNLIKELY HERO, will be reissued in July, just two months from now, and I have other backlist books that will be coming out this year as well. You can find out more about those, contact me, follow me on Twitter, or “like” me on Facebook all from my handy website:

My publisher has chosen to go quite a different route with the covers for this new line of books, and I would also love to hear what people think about it. Like it? Hate it?

I don’t have any giveaways or contests going yet, but I hope you’ll leave a comment anyway!
Story: Beset by troubles, a young runaway and her twin brother are helped on their journey by a handsome stranger who they later learn is the Earl of Brinton. Crowded inns, bad weather, thieves and Bow Street Runners in pursuit are not enough to stop either the growing attraction between Gillian Kentwell and the earl or the trio’s progress across the miles to Scotland, where Gillian hopes to find freedom and a new life. But will even greater setbacks ahead shatter the fragile trust forged on the road and destroy their chances for happiness?


“You must never lose hold of your courage. It is a very precious gift.”

She felt his hazel eyes studying her. Did he truly think she was courageous, rather than foolhardy? Her tears had stopped streaming down, although she could feel them clinging to her lashes and lingering treacherously in her eyes. She could not seem to push any words past the lump in her throat, however. She shook her head.

The fingers he had held under her chin moved slowly up to brush back a tendril of chestnut hair from her cheek. “Is this not the same fearless miss who throws rocks at villainous robbers and attacks brigands with wet clothing? You are not going to tell me you are afraid of the dark?”

In the flickering firelight he looked very much the rogue she had seen in Taunton. His eyes held a glint of mischief, and his unruly dark hair straggled over his forehead. The day’s growth of beard shadowed his jawline and upper lip. His smile was infectious, and Gillian managed to produce a very small one of her own in response.

“Better, much better. You needn’t be afraid, you know. Your brother and I will keep watch all night.” His fingers trailed down from her hair to trace the smile on her lips.

His gentle touch sent fire racing through her veins so suddenly her breath caught in her throat, and her eyes widened in surprise. She realized the ache of despondency in her heart was melting, rapidly giving way to a very different sort of ache. No! Not again. Yet she could not stop it.

Anxious lest he detect her reaction, she tried to find her voice. “But what would you do if someone came?” she finally blurted out. “We haven’t any weapons! In fact, we haven’t anything! –no walls to protect or shelter us, no beds to comfort our sleep –no table to eat upon, nothing to eat with! We haven’t even any way to leave!” She looked down at her hands, clenched tightly in her lap. “It is my folly that has brought us all to this.”

Brinton took Gillian firmly by the shoulders. “If we are here through anyone’s folly, it is certainly not yours. Besides,” he added softly, his eyes on hers, “you are wrong, you know. We have everything here we could ever need.”

She looked at him sharply, wondering what he could mean and how she could continue to resist him. She believed he was toying with her, yet still she wanted desperately to throw herself into his arms. She could not allow herself to be swept up in his spell. Instead, she said, “Have we lost your wits along with everything else?”

Monday, May 7, 2012

Reintroducing Louise Clark

Many thanks to Hannah Howell for allowing me to visit her blog and talk about my new release, Fighting Fate. My name is Louise Clark and I’ve had six—no seven!—books published. All but Fighting Fate were published in the 20th century, so some of you may remember me, but many will not. I began writing contemporary series books for Silhouette using the pen name Roslyn MacDonald. I’m a history major and I’ve always loved the past, so when the opportunity came to write some historical romances I did. Those came out under my own name in the 1990s.

Then came kids.

Kids, I discovered, take up a lot of your time. In my life, that meant the business side of writing was submerged beneath family, grad school and then job. Even though I wasn’t doing much by way of selling my work, I didn’t stop writing though. Now that I am restarting my publishing career, I’ve got lots of material to polish and market. Whether contemporary, historical or time travel (like Fighting Fate) my new books will all be coming out under Louise Clark, so I hope you’ll keep my name in mind.

Fighting Fate is a contemporary time travel. Instead of the usual scenario where one of the characters goes back into the past, the time traveler in this story comes from the year 1772 into the present. Using that twist was a lot of fun because it allowed me to play with the differences between then and now.

What would a man from 1772 find puzzling about our world? Big things like cars, for sure. Paved roads, miles of strip malls where there used to be fields, congestion. Everyday things like refrigerators and flush toilets. And, oh yes, computers, cell phones and tablets. What he wouldn’t find different are people and the way they behave. Since people are at the core of any story, the combination gave me lots of scope to create a touching story with a shot through with a light vein of humor.

When you write a time travel there’s always a lot of world building that has to happen. How does the person move through time? When he reaches the new time period is he there forever? Or will he have to go back? How do other people react to the stranger? Will the past—or the future—be affected? So not only did I fall in love with my characters in Fighting Fate (I always do!), but I also was intrigued by the time travel world they lived in. Though I wrote Fighting Fate to be a stand alone novel, I left the door ajar, so I could explore their world more.

I’m delighted to say that I will be doing that. Joanna D’Angelo and LeeAnn Lessard at Lachesis Publishing have both expressed their enthusiasm for the “Fate” series. They want to know how Faith and Andrew met and they want to read Andrew’s story. I’m happy to oblige. I’ve got four new stories in the series forming in my mind and I’ll be starting work on the first this summer.

Monday, March 5, 2012


I’m so excited to be blogging here at Hannah Howell’s home base. Thank you so much Hannah for the invite!

If someone told me last year at this time that I’d become the VP Editorial at Lachesis Publishing, I would have laughed and laughed. What? No way. I’m working in TV and burning to do another documentary. Well, sometimes our journeys take us on an interesting detour.

But how did I get here exactly?

Let me briefly take you back in time to the year 1991 (ahem). I was graduating with a Bachelor of Journalism at Carleton University and looking for summer work because I was continuing my education in the MA program in the fall. As I perused the job board outside the main office in the journalism department, I spotted an ad for a very cool job. Harlequin Books was looking for a copy editor but the job was in Toronto at their head office and it was full time. Now, the reason why I was so excited was because I had been a fan of romance novels since I first discovered Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett (gush).

Unfortunately, I couldn’t apply for the job because of school—but I always wondered what if? After my MA I ended up working in radio and print and then in TV and film so I have no complaints. Getting a chance to go to the Cannes Film Festival was definitely a highlight of my career.

But my love of romance novels was always there, so eventually I brought my two loves—film and romance fiction together and made a documentary about the world of romance called Who’s Afraid of Happy Endings? It was during my research phase that I met and got to know LeeAnn Lessard—a cracker jack PR gal who boasted a client roster of terrific romance writers including the wonderful Hannah Howell.  I kept in touch with LeeAnn over the years and when she and her talented business partner Louise Clark, who is also a romance writer, approached me about coming on board at Lachesis, it didn’t take me long to say a resounding YES!

I had come full circle—and while I hadn’t gone the more traditional route in getting here —my years writing and editing in various media have given me a unique perspective on the publishing world.

I am thrilled to be working with LeeAnn and Louise who are both smart and savvy as along with our accomplished and dedicated authors who love their craft and our stellar editors behind the scenes.

And now for the really good part!

We are pleased to announce that we are currently accepting submissions in the areas of horror, science fiction, fantasy, suspense thrillers and erotica. As for romance—(my first love) well, we’ve got some wonderful titles coming out this year and in 2013 so we’ll be looking for romance submissions again in a year or so.

We’re also planning a snazzy web site makeover later this year—so stay tuned for that! We’ll be back to let you know about our big launch!

In the mean time—I wish you happy reading!

E-mail submissions to

Monday, February 27, 2012

Feng Shui by Coreene Callahan

First of all, thanks so much, Hannah, for having me on today. I’m thrilled to be a guest on your blog and have the chance to chat about Fury of Fire, the first novel in my Dragonfury series.

This year heralds the Year of the Dragon in the Chinese calendar. Which is serendipitous for me, considering Fury of Fire, showcases a new species of half-dragon, half-human warriors battling to protect humankind.

While writing the book, I discovered some interesting things about dragon-shifters as a whole. Chief among them? They are incredibly picky about where they live. So while designing Black Diamond (their lair), I had a few concepts in mind to keep them happy as I built their home.

How did I do it? Feng shui, the Chinese practice of space, orientation, and the flow of positive energy (or ch’i). Interesting stuff, so I decided I’d share a few feng shui principles you might like to use in your own homes.

1.  No T.V.s in the bedrooms. A television draws the positive ch’i out of the room and interrupts a good night’s sleep.

2.  No mirrors opposite or beside your bed. Mirrors can attract a third party into a relationship, thereby causing tension between you and your significant other.
3.  Place an indoor fountain in your home. Ensure it has a favorable position, and it will attract the things you most want in life.

4.  Install a fish tank. If well positioned, it will tap into the “Divine Water Dragon’s Den” and bring you greater fortune.

5.  Always have a solid wall behind your bed. The wall will allow you to sink into a deeper sleep and you will wake up feeling refreshed.

So, enjoy, go forth, and feng shui! It’s a heck of a lot of fun, and who knows? You may end up achieving all you’ve been dreaming of this year with a little help of the ch’i you draw into your home. And if you like, pick up a copy of Fury of Fire to see how feng shui empowers the dragon-shifters and keeps them in positive energy.

Coreene will be giving one lucky commentator an ARC of Fury of Fire. Please leave you email address below in the comment section. The winner will be chosen at random, and Coreene will be in touch in order to arrange sending the winner a copy of the book.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Introducing Kallie Lane

Thanks so much, Hannah, for inviting me to guest blog and share a glimpse of Dark Abandon with your friends.

The creation of my heroine, Melena Salera, evolved from this writer’s golden rule—Write What You Know. It’s my favorite recipe; start with a grain of truth and whip it into romantic suspense fantasy.

First, the grain of truth: I was an adopted child and knew about it from a very young age. As embarrassing as this is to admit, as a young teenager I would sometimes blame my adopted parents for grounding me (which I richly deserved), and would hole up in my room feeling unfairly treated. I refer to this as my princess phase. I would launch myself into consoling daydreams where I believed my real parents would never have treated me in such a way. And they would never have expected me to keep my room clean, wash the dishes, or bring boys home for my dad to evil-eye. But, what if I was wrong about them? What if they weren’t the wonderful family I imagined them to be?

Enter the fantasy: What happens to a woman who is adopted, yet has no idea about her adoption or her true lineage? How does she cope when accusers believe she has murdered her biological grandmother for a multi-million-dollar inheritance she knows nothing about? Who does she turn to when killers are hot on her trail, and she has no idea who wants her dead?

There is only one man she can trust. Her grandmother’s lawyer, the Special Ops-reserve unit-warrior, Theo Sauvage, who lives for the day he can drop kick her to prison for killing her grandmother.

Welcome to Melena’s nightmare—and let the games begin.

Happy reading everyone! Kallie

A Shadow Soldier novel

I will be awarding one lucky commentator a PDF version of DARK ABANDON. Please leave your email addy in the comment section. The winner will be chosen and receive their copy of the book on Sunday, February 19th.

DARK ABANDON is now available for purchase at The Wild Rose Press . It is also available at Amazon.
It will soon be available on Nook, ARe, Bookstrand, Fictionwise, and Barnes & Noble as well.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Writing about a heroine that rivals the adventures of Stephanie Plumm by J M Griffin

Thanks for having me stop by today, Hannah. I’m really pleased to be here. By the way, I just read your novel, If He’s Dangerous, and loved it.

Writing a series is often easier than writing a single title. You become comfortable with the characters and their personalities, know what they will and won’t do, what makes them mad, how they will handle the surprises that we, as writers, throw their way. Heck, they are like family members you have come to know, like, hate, dread….you get the idea.

It took me some time to find my voice when I began writing the Esposito series about ten years ago, but once I found it, there was no stopping Lavinia “Vinnie” Esposito from making her presence known.

It wasn’t until I read Janet’s first Stephanie Plum novel, One for the Money, that I realized our characters were so similar. I’m amazed at the way my main character in the Vinnie Esposito series runs fairly neck-in-neck with that of Stephanie Plum. While she isn’t an out of work woman who takes on a job she has difficulty doing like Stephanie has, Vinnie Esposito can’t seem to get from point A to point B without some horrendous misfortune sending her off course, which usually leaves her treading dangerous waters.

Not long ago, you had me asked me how hard it is to write humor. Well, Hannah, what’s a story without a chuckle or two and maybe a real belly laugh thrown in for good measure? I enjoy a lighthearted novel that transports me away from the daily stresses of life, if it’s only for a little while.

To write humor isn’t all that hard if you look at life that way. Try finding something funny at least once a day and incorporate it into a story. For instance…my daughter and I went to the Providence Art Club for a gallery show about a year ago. There were so many different people there, dressed up, dressed down, and barely dressed, that I stood in a corner and jotted notes about them while pretending to admire the artwork. When I stepped into the second viewing room, I found this short man with thin greasy hair slicked over his head and draping over the tops of his ears. His suit was old, his shirt crisp and white. He stuffed his mouth with crackers loaded with as much food as he could pile onto each one. When I had the chance to ask my daughter about him, she told me he goes to all the gallery openings and eats, but never stays long and he’s very well off. As we left, another man entered the building. My daughter smiled, acknowledged him and whispered to me “He only comes to drink the wine. When it’s gone, so is he.” I found this fascinating and decided I’d add it to a story.
No matter where I go, I watch people, imagine them in a variety of scenes and develop my characters and story line from there. I don’t know how Janet Evanovich comes up with her charcters, but maybe we’re more alike than I think we are.

Thanks for asking me to visit, Hannah.

Pick up a free copy of FOR LOVE OF LIVVY today at BN and ARe and pick up copies of DIRTY TROUBLE and DEAD WRONG at BN, ARe  and Kindle for just $2.99

Monday, January 2, 2012

Introducing Jacqui Morrison

The writing life is both solidary and social. I spend countless hours on my computer and I also enjoy public speaking. Both experiences are enriching and productive. My name is Jacqui Morrison and I am the author of Kaitlyn Wolfe,Crown Attorney by Lachesis Publishing.

In the formative years, I plugged away on my home computer alone. I did not know if my writing was any good but I kept persevering. Tenacity was the key to success.

Back then, I had not found my style. I just knew I was driven to write. Initially my style in writing mysteries was film noir. It was like a black and white photo begging for some colour.  Soliciting feedback from friends and family has its drawbacks. It was feast or famine either accolades or blank stares of boredom.

I began to find my style when I decided to accept support and feedback from other accomplished writers. I became part of an editing circle. Four writers met monthly to critique each other’s work. This was probably the single most important thing I did to improve my writing and my confidence. We vowed to be completely honest so the members provided blunt but constructive feedback.  Initially a deeper form of feedback was difficult to take but I put my ego aside and started to benefit from the direct honesty.

My style was beginning to emerge. I realized that my writing style was character driven. I spent a great deal of time creating biographies of my main characters. I frequently refer back to them while I’m in the midst of writing a manuscript.

I also joined a writing organization and attended seminars on the craft of writing. In time, my confidence and my circle of contacts increased ten-fold. In the early days I could not even read my work out-loud without sputtering and stammering. I now realize it was because I was reading my own work – I was baring my soul publicly.

Through the writing organization, I took a workshop on utilizing acting techniques in presentation. The techniques and the growing confidence in my written work catapulted me into enjoying reading and performing. This one-day seminar was an integral part of my confidence building.

Today, I would consider myself both an extravert and an introvert. Introverted in the creation of the work and extraverted in promoting it. My confidence has grown exponentially now I look for events where I can perform. I no longer look at these events with dread, I look forward to being on the stage, performing and hopefully selling some books. At the very least, public performance increases my network.

I still thoroughly enjoy creating a fresh first draft and then agonizing over the editing. Each time I begin a new novel I become excited and have trouble stopping. The words fly onto the page and I rarely have writer’s block. The only time I have a form of writer’s block is when the busyness of my day-to-day life sneaks into my writing life. I have to work on a balance of writing, promoting and performing. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Today I am a Writer in Residence at the Parry Sound Public Library where I conduct writing seminars for budding writers. I look for opportunities to perform in public and thoroughly enjoy watching the faces in the audience as they hear my spoken word.  My first novel won the 2009 Gold IPPY award for best fiction in Central and Eastern Canada, which garnered credibility from fellow authors and readers. 

My second novel Oddly Accused, a suspenseful mystery/courtroom drama will be released by Lachesis Publishing in 2012.