Category Archives: First Impressions

It’s September and that means it’s READ A BOOK MONTH at NN Lights Bookheaven

Autumn is here and readers are gearing up for some serious tackling of their to-be-read list.

September is Read a Book a Month and N. N. Light’s Book Heaven is your guru to unleashing your inner reader. They have teamed up with over forty-five authors to offer loads of books plus gift cards. Readers can win free books including hardcover, e-copy and audiobooks plus Amazon gift cards. The list is long and personally, I’d love to win myself but alas, I can’t. So, I’ll just live vicariously through the lucky winners. If there’s a particular book or prize you’d like to win, be sure to say which prize you want when you enter via Rafflecopter. Enter below and good luck!

My autumn-themed book FIRST IMPRESSIONS is part of the giveaway!

Read a Book a Month Giveaway: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/92db7750131

Literary Giveaway Portal:  https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/literary-giveaway-portal

Good luck and Happy September!!!

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Filed under First Impressions, MacQuire Women

#backlistthursday 1.21.2021 FIRST IMPRESSIONS (MacQuire Women, book 3)

Keeping with our theme of revisiting all my books in series in order, today I give you FIRST IMPRESSIONS (book 3 in the MacQuire Women series).

This was the very first book I wrote where I had the hero fully formed and developed before I ever had a plot or a heroine. I just knew I needed to tell Pat Cleary’s story because he’s such a misunderstood guy. People think he’s a player, but he’s really just searching for THE ONE. He wants a marriage as wonderful and long lasting as his parents, so he’s picky and realizes he needs to kiss a lot of frogs first!! hee hee.

 

BLURB:

Family Practice Doctor Clarissa Rogers’ first impression of Padric Cleary is biased and based on gossip. The handsome, charming veterinarian is considered a serial dater and commitment-phobic by his family and most of the town. Relationship shy, Clarissa refuses to lose her heart to a man who can’t pledge himself to her forever.

Pat Cleary, despite his reputation, is actually looking for “The One.” When he does give his heart away, he wants it to be for life. With his parent’s marriage as his guidebook, he wants a woman who will be his equal and soul mate in every way.

Can Pat convince everyone – including Clarissa – she’s the only woman for him?

ENJOY….

“I told you I thought I should apologize but I didn’t want to, and it was the truth. I enjoyed it. I’d hoped you did, too.”

When she didn’t answer but continued to stare at him, an expression he couldn’t name on her face, he shook his head and, said, “My ego really takes a beating around you.”

She smiled then and squeezed his hands. “I think your ego is pretty intact, Pat.”

“I really like when you do that,” he said, a heartbeat later.

“What? Talk about your bruised ago?”

He shook his head, charmed by her teasing. “When you laugh. And smile. I really like when you smile. Especially at me.”

Her blush deepened. “Pat…”

Without thought, like he had in his office earlier in the afternoon, he dipped his head down. With her hands still in his, he gently tugged her closer, and watched her eyes widen as he moved in.

He gave her a second to resist, to pull back. He thought she might.

But she didn’t, so he did what he’d been dying to do all day. Hell, since they’d met.

With her caramel-colored gaze boring into his, Pat kissed her.

A brief touch, barely a whisper of contact is all it was, but Pat’s insides imploded when her mouth settled against his. His hands still held hers and when he pulled back to stare at her face, two things happened simultaneously and almost made him lose his mind.

First, Clarissa trailed her tongue over the area he’d kissed, moisture wetting her plump lips. A shot of pure want bulleted through him when her lips glistened in the dim lighting of the doorway. At the same time he felt a tug on his hands and in the next second, Clarissa’s arms were wrapped around his neck, her hot, sweet mouth plastered to his.

He couldn’t think. Wouldn’t have been able to answer a question if asked. All he could do was feel. Stretched up against the length of him, up on her toes, Clarissa molded her body to his while her mouth pressed against his. His hands went around her waist, up her back to push her in even closer, their bodies separated from one another only by the width of their clothes.

Pat’s hands pushed against the butt he’d been fantasizing about minutes before, clutching it. It fit his palms as if it’d been forged for his hold.

Perfect.

Absolutely perfect.

He lost the ability to breath when Clarissa traced the tip of her tongue across his bottom lip. In less than a heartbeat, he sucked it into his mouth, twirling it around his own, exploring every part of her mouth. She tasted like sin laced with sugar. A tiny whimper cried up from the back of her throat, and she tightened her grip around his neck.

With a quick tug, Pat yanked her up his body and settled her butt in his spread palms. She wound her legs around his hips to cross high on his waist around his back. The hottest part of her, damp and blazing, now nestled against the hardest part of him, straining against the zipper of his pants. Using her front door as a plank, he turned and braced her against it. Torturously, he ground his hips against the soft fabric of her jeans, causing another whimper to morph into a full-fledged, erotic moan from deep within her.

She fisted his hair, tugging, twirling it around her fingers, massaging his scalp, as his tongue moved from her mouth to slide across her cheek, skim her jaw, taste the back of her ear. He licked his lips, then trailed his wet mouth back and forth against the hollow of her shoulder.

She tasted like sunshine and smelled like a warm summer night.

“God, Clarissa, you feel so good.” He nuzzled the sweet spot behind her ear and gently nipped her lobe between his teeth.

He tugged on it, and his heart skipped a beat when she cried his name. With purpose, one of his hands trailed down her side to trace the outline of a breast. He swallowed her gasp as his fingers splayed over her hardened nipple and delicately pinched it through her shirt. Her butt jumped against his hands, and he felt her vibrate—actually vibrate—against him.

“Pat—”

“I love when you say my name.” His lips found hers again, and like the first time, his stomach did a frantic little jig.

He felt her back shake and her hands push against his shoulders, trying to separate them. When she succeeded, his mind went blank as a tiny little suction sound, sexy and unbelievably hot, shot from them when they parted. Her eyes were huge and wet, the brown so deep they looked like chocolate tempering, and he melted right into them. The most intimate part of her was pressed against him, shaking with what he thought was need.

She smiled, almost laughing. He didn’t think his ego could take another blow, when a muffled sound hit his ears.

“What’s pinging?” he asked.

“My beeper. It’s going off.”

They both looked down at the same time. Her pager was pressed against his substantial erection. The vibration shook straight to his toes, and his penis pulsed against it. He knew she could see what was happening to him, when, suddenly, he realized he had her pinioned against the door.

With an oath, he gently lowered her, and when she had a solid footing, released his grip.

She pulled her pager from her waistband, repositioned her glasses, which had gone askew from her shirtfront, and went to get her phone.

While she answered the page, Pat none-too-gently banged his forehead against the door she’d been plastered against.

What the hell was wrong with him? Christ, he had her bracketed against a door—a door—like some out- of-control, hormone-driven teenager.

And it hadn’t taken anything other than a small, innocent kiss to drive him crazy. He blew out a deep breath and tried to summon up some calm.

“Pat.”

With his eyes closed, he pushed off the door and turned around. When he opened them, he wasn’t surprised to see a smile tugging at the corners of her lips.

“I have to go see a patient in the E.R.”

He shoved his hands into his pants pockets and nodded. He didn’t know what to say, didn’t know how to voice what he thought he should.

Intrigued? you can get your copy across all digital media and in print, here: FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Happy reading, peeps  ~Peg

 

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#SundaySnippet 10.13.19

Since my fall themed romance FIRST IMPRESSIONS is still on sale, I thought it would be a good idea to give you another little snippet to entice your romance book loving tastes!

Heehee

Par Cleary is a master at seduction as he easily proves in this little sumthin’ sumthin;.

Friday evening rolled around and she stopped at the local market to pick something up for dinner. Thankfully, during this outing, no patients stopped her and she’d been able to make a quick selection and be on her way.

At home, she’d no sooner toed off her shoes than the doorbell chimed.

She opened the door, surprised to see Pat standing there, a sheepish look on his face.

“I know I didn’t call or text, but I saw you drive by the clinic on your way home and I thought you might like a visit.”

Pleasure warmed her. An unfamiliar sound billowed from inside his jacket, though, a jacket zipped almost to his collar, despite the warm weather.

“What have you got in there?” she asked, her gaze dropping to his chest.

His grin grew into a wide smile. “Like I said, a visitor.”

With a gentle tug, he dragged the toggle down a little and a chubby, whiskered face popped through the opening.

Oh.” Clarissa reached for the kitten as Pat opened the rest of his jacket. “Come here, you sweet thing.”

When she lifted the little bundle and folded it lose in her arms, it meowed loudly and immediately began its pulsating purr. Clarissa brought the kitten to her face and dropped soft and tender kisses on its snout. Its fur smelled clean, fresh, and so like a kitten, for a second Teeny’s face popped into her mind.

She glanced over her shoulder at Pat as she carried the kitten to the kitchen. “Since you brought me such a wonderful present, I can’t very well kick you out.”

His devilish grin told her it was what he’d been hoping.

He tossed his jacket onto the back of her couch and followed her into the kitchen.

“When was the last time she ate?” Reaching up into the cabinet where she’d kept Teeny’s food, Clarissa took a small bowl down and filled it with water, never letting go of the kitten.

“Right before I left the clinic, so she’s set until I bring her back. My night crew will make sure she gets something later.”

Clarissa set the water bowl down at her feet. Sitting cross-legged on the floor, she released the kitten, who immediately began lapping at it. Her little blue-eyed gaze stayed locked on Clarissa’s legs as her tiny pink tongue flew back and forth from the water bowl to her mouth.

“Don’t let her drink too much,” Pat said, resting a hip against her kitchen counter, arms crossed over his chest. “You’ll have a mess on your hands.”

Clarissa looked up at him from her position on the floor to tell him she didn’t mind a mess and stopped breathing. He looked so handsome, so rakishly gorgeous settled against the counter. The ink black, errant cowlick was beginning to fall forward over his eyebrow again, and her hands actually throbbed to smooth it back. He had the making of a five o’clock shadow across his granite hard jaw, and the dimple clefting his chin appeared even deeper than usual. The cotton fabric of his shirt pulled against his shoulders, the muscles in his biceps pushing against the material. He was so completely and totally male in every facet of his being, Clarissa was, quite simply, in awe.

She had to mentally fight to draw her attention back to the now meowing kitten as it demanded her attention. When she picked it up and nuzzled it with her nose, she rose and asked, “What prompted this visit? Is she ready to be fostered out?”

“Soon. I wanted you to see her again, make sure you still want to.”

“I do.”

Pat nodded. “When we get back from Boston, we can make arrangements for when to transfer her over to you.”

At the mention of their planned trip, Clarissa’s nerves pushed forward. Since she was holding the kitten she couldn’t twine her hands together to quell them and in the next instant realized rubbing the soft downy fur was a much better form of self-soothing.

“What time are we leaving in the morning?”

Pat pushed off the counter and crossed to her. With a finger, he stroked the kitten’s neck, her eyes squinting in kitty ecstasy. Clarissa watched his finger move up and down across the fur, the strokes smooth and rhythmic, almost hypnotic, and licked her lips. What would it feel like for him to stroke her the same way? It was a safe bet she’d purr and moan like the kitten. Only louder.

“Moira said we’d pick you up around eight thirty. It’ll give us a relaxed driving time so we won’t be rushed.”

Clarissa nodded, knowing if she spoke, her voice would betray the raging desire shooting through her.

In the next instant, Pat’s stomach rumbled loud enough to be heard above the kitten’s deafening purrs.

Clarissa tried to contain her giggle so she wouldn’t startle the animal, but when Pat’s neck heated with a ruddy flare and he thrust his hands into his pockets, she couldn’t hold it in.

He squinted at her, and, with a menacing glare, pushed nearer to her. “You’re always quietly laughing at me,” he said, stopping so close she could feel his hot, moist breath on her face. “I can’t figure out why I want to be around someone who always laughs at me.”

“I know why,” she said, kissing the kitten again.

When his left eyebrow shot up his forehead, she answered. “It’s easy. Whenever we’re together, we’re usually eating. You’re hungry, so you want me to cook for you.”

His face went blank, and she couldn’t for the life of her discern what he was thinking. She could hear him breathing now, not only feel it, the air pushing out of him a tad faster than it had moments before. The flushed heat on his neck spread up his jaw. She could have melted to the floor when his eyes turned hot too, the lids hooded, so much so, Clarissa finally understood the meaning of a smoldering look.

His hands snaked out and grabbed her upper arms, pulling her and the kitten toward his chest. With the animal as a buffer between them, Clarissa could feel every inch of him as he pressed her body against his, one hand circling around her back and resting on her waist, the other trailing across her jaw. His eyes dilated as he crossed his tongue over his bottom lip, all the while pulling her in closer, molding her body to his.

Her panties grew damp in a heartbeat, and when he licked his lips, she felt her nipples pull and tighten inside her bra. Desire swam around the two of them. She could smell it, musky and potent, taste it against her lips, hot and spicy, and feel the heat of it warming her from head to curling toes.

“Pat?”

He didn’t answer, but continued to hold her prisoner, gaze, body and soul. She couldn’t take a full breath, didn’t dare to, afraid she’d break the spell he’d woven around them, afraid she’d lose the thin thread of control she clutched to prevent herself from jumping on him and eating him alive.

“Clarissa,” he whispered, his nose nuzzling along the outer edge of her jaw.

“Y-yes?”

His lips skimmed her throat, trailing lazily along the column of her blouse. He placed an open-mouthed, wet kiss along the skin beneath her ear, and she finally let out the breath she’d been holding, fearful she would faint dead away if she didn’t.

“I smell turkey,” he said softly, and took her ear lobe into his mouth.

As he gently sucked on it, Clarissa felt a punch of lust straight through her midsection. “Wh-what?”

She gasped when his tongue slid against her throat. “And biscuits.”

“Biscuits?” Confusion vied with a hunger that had nothing to do with food.

“Mmmm. Turkey and biscuits.” He licked her collarbone and then sucked at the skin covering it.
“Oh, sweet Jesus.”
With a smile dancing on his lips, he pulled back

and looked at her face.

“Clarissa, I’m starving.”
She blinked a few times.
“You wouldn’t, by any chance, want to share your dinner with me, would you? Friend.”

The cloud of erotic sensations he’d spun around her finally started to disperse. His stomach growled again, and even the kitten heard it this time because she startled and dug her nails into Clarissa’s arm.

“Ouch,” she said with a good-natured chuckle. “You scared her.”

“Hand her over.” He took the kitten and began stroking her chin again.

The sight of this big, strong and utter male holding the tiny kitten so tenderly and lovingly tugged at Moira’s heart. Right then she realized everything she’d heard about him was wrong.

Wrong and totally inaccurate.

“Since you brought me such a nice present,” she repeated, gazing up at him from under her eyelashes, “I think I have enough for the two of us.”

His charming grin broadened. When she turned around to finally unload the grocery bags, she heard him whisper, “Good job, kitty. It worked.”

She couldn’t help laughing.

Intrigued? Get your ecopy while it’s still just 99 cents here: Amazon /// Nook /// Ibooks

 

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Filed under Contemporary Romance, Family Saga, First Impressions, MacQuire Women, Romance, WIld Rose Press AUthor

It’s #October and that means….a #booksale for a #fallthemed Romance!

This is exactly what it looks like in my little piece of Heaven in NH right now!! I love the fall colors, and they seem especially bright this year.

In honor of my favorite season, I’ve got one of my MacQuire Women books on sale for #99cents right now, and it just so happens to take place in the fall!!! FIRST IMPRESSIONS tells the story of Pat and Clarissa. The scene in the apple orchard while they are gathering apples for pie is one of my favorites!

Family Practice Doctor Clarissa Rogers’ first impression of Padric Cleary is biased and based on gossip. The handsome, charming veterinarian is considered a serial dater and commitment-phobic by his family and most of the town. Relationship shy, Clarissa refuses to lose her heart to a man who can’t pledge himself to her forever.

Pat Cleary, despite his reputation, is actually looking for “The One.” When he does give his heart away, he wants it to be for life. With his parent’s marriage as his guidebook, he wants a woman who will be his equal and soul mate in every way.

Can Pat convince everyone – including Clarissa – she’s the only woman for him?

You’ll have to read the book to find out the answer!

On sale now at: Amazon /// Nook /// Ibooks

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Filed under First Impressions, MacQuire Women, New Hampshire, Romance, Romance Books, The Wild Rose Press, WIld Rose Press AUthor

#NNLightsBookHeavenBookathon #septemberreads

 

Calling all readers! Have you read all your beach reads over the summer and are looking for new books to dive into this month? We’re celebrating books from all genres at N. N. Light’s Book Heaven’s second annual Fall Into These Great Reads Bookathon. 51 books featured plus a chance to win one of the following:

Enter to win a $50 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

Enter to win a $50 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

Enter to win a $25 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

Enter to win a $15 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

Enter to win a $10 Amazon (US) or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

I’m thrilled to be a part of this event. My book, FIRST IMPRESSIONS, is featured today!. Wait until you read why I think my book is a must-read in September. You won’t want to miss it. Click here: Bookathon

Bookmark this event and tell your friends:

https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/fall-into-these-great-reads-bookath

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Filed under First Impressions, MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, The Wild Rose Press, WIld Rose Press AUthor, Writing

#SundaySnippet week 3, 1.20.19

SO today I’m giving you  a little something from my 3rd book in the MacQuire Women series, FIRST IMPRESSIONS. I have to admit, this is my favorite book in the series. I know you’re not supposed to have a favorite – it’s like your kids: you love them all equally, but in truth, this book was a joy for me to write. Pat Cleary was the first fully formed male character that ever came into my mind. I didn’t need to think about him at all – one day he just stood in front of me, fully formed. Love that. Anyway. Here’s a little scene between him and the woman he’s rapidly losing his heart to, Clarissa Rogers.

“Clarissa? Follow my voice to the treatment rooms,” Pat called.

She found him standing at an exam table, a wide box on top of it. His white lab coat stretched taut against his substantial shoulders, giving her a full view of their width along with his trim waist. The coat grazed the back of his knees. His back was to her and he appeared to be holding something in his hands, close to his chest. He was speaking softly, the soothing timbre in his voice reminding her of how he’d sounded when he’d spoken with her after Teeny died: gentle, calm, reassuring. The sound of his deep voice shot a bullet of desire straight to her core.

“Are you all alone here?” she asked, as she came into the spacious workroom.

“My evening staff went to get something to eat. They’ll be back in a few minutes.”

He turned to her and she saw what was cradled in his hands.

Oh.” She all but flew across the room.

His grin was so boyish, so rakish, she physically had to tear her gaze from his face back to the tiny kitten resting in his arms.

“Cute, isn’t she?” Pat held her up by the scruff of her neck to show Clarissa. “She and her sibs were brought in this afternoon by one of my clients.”

“Why?” Clarissa’s fingertips longed to hold the little darling.

As if reading her mind, Pat said, “Here, take her.” He placed the squirming little bundle gently into her outstretched hands. Immediately, Clarissa pulled the kitten to her chest and began stroking its chin. A motorboat of purring churned from within the tiny creature, bringing an instant smile to both humans in the room.

“To answer your question,” Pat said, watching them, “he was out driving and saw a box on the side of the road. When he stopped, he found eight of them, four males, four females, abandoned. The mother was nowhere in sight. He knows we board and foster strays until homes can be found, so he brought them to me.”

“How could someone leave them on the side of the road?” Clarissa asked, her fingers never stopping their gentle caresses of the kitten’s neck. “They could have been hit by a car. Or worse.”

Pat shrugged. “Happens all the time. A cat has a litter and the owners can’t, or won’t, take care of them. It’s the reason we foster. And why I asked you to come down here.”

When she looked back to him, she could see a question in his eyes. “Pat?”

“Hear me out,” he said, putting his hands on her upper arms. Like a bolt of lightning striking, his touch zoomed all the way through her. “The kittens are too young right now to adopt. We need to get them hydrated, nourished and neutered. My guess is they’re about three weeks old. Four, tops. Without a mother to socialize them, they need extra care here first. Then they’ll need to be acclimated. This is where I’m hoping you’ll come in.” He removed his hands and stroked a finger down the cat’s neck.

“What do you mean?”

“When they’re ready to go, I’m hoping you’ll take this one to foster. You don’t need to adopt her, and I’m not asking you to. But we’ve found when animals are placed in good homes during developing periods, they adapt better when they’re adopted out. I can’t think of a better person to socialize and foster a kitten then you, Clarissa.”

Touched more than she could ever have thought to be by a statement with such thoughtfulness, Clarissa found herself tightening her hold on the kitten and loosening the grip on her heart.

Without a thought to what it would entail by having a new kitten in her life, the time consumption, the routine kitten messes she’d need to clean, Clarissa followed her heart and said, “Yes.”

Pat’s smile widened. “I was really hoping you’d agree.”

“How can I not?” She pulled the kitten to face level and planted a sweet kiss to its nose. Striking gray-blue eyes, peered at her from barely-opened lids. A tiny yowl burst from her and morphed into a wide, mouth- broadening yawn. The kitten shook its head back and forth a few times, its entire body going with the motion and then stretched its front and back paws wide. Clarissa laughed, looked up at Pat and her heart stopped. His pupils had dilated to the point where she could barely make out the ripe color in the irises. His mouth was slightly parted, and she could see his chest rising underneath his lab coat. With his fingers still scratching at the kitten’s neck, he bent his head toward her.

Every nerve in her body went on high alert. She knew he was going to kiss her and all she could think was: Yes, please.

With the kitten buffering their bodies, Pat brought his head down, stopping for the merest of moments to gaze across her face. She didn’t know what he was looking for, but whatever it was, must have pleased him because he put his lips to hers. It was the briefest of touches, his mouth sliding along hers in a gentle caress. His breath, moist and warm, drifted over her as he let it out. Neither closed their eyes, as if not to miss a moment of the encounter. On a whisper, he said her name. His hands rose up her arms, wound around her neck and rested on either side of her face. Cupping her cheeks, he rubbed her mouth with the pad of his thumb. Clarissa’s tongue grazed across it and his breath whistled out between his lips. In the next second his mouth came back to hers and took it again. This time there was no hesitation.

His fingers gently turned her head. With a tiny tug on her chin he swiped at her bottom lip with his tongue, waiting for her response. She needed no further request. Her own lips parted, and when his tongue entered her mouth she tilted her head backward giving him free access.

He tasted like nothing she’d ever tasted before. Spicy. Bold. Vibrant. His tongue pulled hers into his mouth as he expertly twined it with his own. If she hadn’t been leaning up against him, Clarissa knew she would have dropped to her knees from the jolt pounding through her at his touch.

His lips pressed against hers, the tantalizing way his fingers rubbed across her cheeks, the sound of his breathing as it grew more rapid and coarse when he deepened the kiss, was almost too much for her to wrap her analytical mind around.

So she didn’t. She simply kissed him back.

Intrigued? Here’s where you can get a copy – and a hint: the ebooks are on sale right now! So what are you waiting for? Hee hee

Amazon // WIld Rose Press // B&N // Kobo // google play //walmart // books-a-million

and find me here:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

and here’s the link to my TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DAMN BOOK podcast interview, just in case you missed it: TMAYDB

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Filed under First Impressions, MacQuire Women

Welcome to #Walmart

In this never ending quagmire of publishing, I discovered today that my ebooks are all available at WALMART.Com

So, if you shop Walmart on line and are looking for some bargains on my books, here you go. These titles are currently available.

Skater’s Waltz 

There’s No Place like Home

First Impressions 

The VOices of Angels

Passion’s Palette

A Kiss Under the Christmas Lights

3 Wishes

Cooking with Kandy

A Shot at love

CAn’t Stand the Heat

SO, in addition to Amazon, WRP, Nook, Kobo, Apple and Google +, I’m really just everywhere these days! hahaha

FInd me here, too:Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

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Filed under Author, Author Branding, author promotion, Candy Hearts, Family Saga, First Impressions, Food lover, Foodie, Friends, Hope's Dream, Kensington Publishers, love, Lyrical Author, MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, Skater's Waltz, Strong Women, The Laine Women, The Voices of Angels, The Wild Rose Press, There's No Place Like Home, WIld Rose Press AUthor, Writing

Presenting…Gemma Snow

A little something different from me today…I’m introducing you to a new author to me ( although I’ve known her personally for a while!) Gemma Snow. Gemma writers erotic and contemporary romance as well as historical romance and fiction. She’s got a new book out and I’m giving you a little taste of what to expect from her at the end of the interview. Gemma and I are part of the #MFRW authors 52 week blog challenge that’s been going on since January of this year, and this year at #RWA17 I was able to hang out with her for a while and just chat during our busy week. She’s an absolute delight – not to mention wicked funny and charming. So, sit back and find out a little bit more about this darlin’.

Gemma Snow, The Writer Questions

  1. What drives you to write?

I guess I don’t really see it as a choice. Stories, and characters and interactions and events build up and I just need to get them down on paper. I love the idea of being able to create something from virtually nothing, building characters and worlds that never existed before. Sometimes it gets hard, really hard, but I couldn’t possibly imagine a life without it.

  1. What genre(s) of Romance do your write, and why?

I write across several genres, and that’s mostly because every time I think I should get it together and focus my attention, another story pops up like a demanding kitten. So far, I write in historical and contemporary, with raunchy and raunchier book.I love writing historical, because characters are already thrust into a tense situation, and it’s always a lot of fun playing with subtext and innuendo. I write erotic romance because I feel that a pretty fundamental part of feminism is reevaluating the role female sexuality plays in society, and acknowledging the very wide variety of what that means. Erotic romance is fun, and it makes for good cocktail party conversation, but I really do consider it important.

3. Do you write everyday? I write every day, but it isn’t always a book. I run three blogs, updated weekly, and I’m the News Editor for my startup company, which means I also have to keep up with the articles for that site as well. There’s also the way less sexy marketing and social media and newsletter element of things. That kind of writing isn’t nearly as much fun, but in a lot of ways, it’s just as important.. My schedule is nuts. I work part time, freelance, support my start up and write under two names, as well as managing all their accompany social media requirements. A good day for me is a healthy balance of writing and marketing.

4. Give us a glimpse of the surroundings where you write. Separate room? In the kitchen? At the dining room table?

My office is my bedroom. Sometimes it’s kind of a problem. The last thing us writer types is another reason to spend too much time alone in our own worlds. The room is actually great, though. I have my desk set up, two bulletin boards for storyboarding, and pens and paper within reach. My boyfriend and I are living with my parents right now, and I really do wish I had an office without a futon and piles of clothes in it, but I’m so grateful for the chance to make this author-as-a-career thing work, that I can’t complain. Plus, the light is amazing.

5. Are you the kind of writer who needs total quiet to compose, or are you able to filter out the typical sounds of the day and use your tunnelvision? Don’t talk to me, don’t look at me, in fact, just leave the room, would ya? It might be because I’m nosy, but whatever the reason, I can’t deal with conversations, noise or music. The dog barking at the foot of the stairs takes me right out of my work and I sit there steaming instead of writing. I also tend to write down what I hear, so if the television is on or someone’s on the phone, forget it. My boyfriend’s great though, if he wants to come hang out in the room, he just plugs in his headphones and leaves me too it.

6. How did you come up with the plotline/idea for your current WIP? It’s kind of a funny story, actually. So Seduction en Pointe came about through a book I had published with a now defunct indie press, called Six is Company. That story was actually a novella, and included three couples that I wanted to bring to life. At first, Isabelle’s name was Taylor, so that shows you just how far away I’ve come from the original plot, which would need serious revising to go into reprint. Anyway, the press went down, but I kept my amazing editor and we started developing Seduction. At first it was going to be a novella, and I had to reorganize everything when I hit about 30k and realized the story was a world away from what I expected it to be. I can honestly say that I rewrote, like serious, construction equipment rewrote, this book at least four times. At one point, I had the whole thing broken down on a whiteboard in our foyer for like three months. My mom was patient, but I definitely pushed the limits. It’s been a really tough book to write, but I couldn’t be happier with how it all turned out.

7. Which comes first for you – character or plot? And why? Usually character. I tend to write series, even when I don’t really mean to. A lot of that comes from my need to put supportive female characters into my books, so a lot of spin-offs are sisters or friends that started as secondary characters. But usually by the time I get done with book one, I know everyone in the book universe, so to speak. Seduction en Pointe is part of the Full Swing series, and I have those characters mapped out and pinned down. Same with The Lovin’ is Easy and the next three books in the Triple Diamond series.

8. What 3 words describes you, the writer? Curious, passionate, determined – I hope!

Gemma, The Person:

  1. Tell us one unusual thing about yourself – not related to writing! I work as an automotive journalist and I’ve been a car nut since before I could walk. Amazingly, I’m only just coming around to writing a car romance.
  2. Who was your first love and what age were you? I was sixteen and he was a twenty-one year old British lifeguard. Pretty much ruined my life, ya know?
  3. If you could relive one day, which one would it be? Think GROUNDHOG DAY, the movie for this one – you’ll have to live it over and over and…  This is hard! It has to be the day I found out Robbie, my boyfriend, got a job in New York. We had been doing long distance from Boston to New Jersey for over a year and it was just really hard. I was on my bus ride back to New York when I got the call that he was moving down to live with me in less than a week, and I burst into tears. Either that, or the day I graduated college.
  4. Do you like a guy in boxers, briefs, or commando? Boxer briefs, baby! I love me a good butt.
  5. If you had to give up one necessary-can’t-live-without-it beauty item, what would it be?Hair pins! Or hair cream. Or tweezers… I have a hair problem.
  6. What three words describe you, the person? I think curious still stands, creative, loving.
  7. If you could sing a song with Jimmy Fallon, what would it be? I am not legally allowed to sing in the state of New Jersey, and I imagine that extends to New York too… Straight up tone deaf, this girl.
  8. If you could hang out with any literary character from any book penned at any time line, who would it by, why, and what would you do together? This is so hard! I mean, there are some characters I love, but definitely wouldn’t want to spend time with – Dracula, for instance. It’s probably cliché to say Hermione Granger, but those books came out as I was growing up, and I can’t overstate how important they were to my development as writer, feminist and over all person. Or Claire and Jamie Fraser! Or anyone from any book Juliette Marillier has ever written! I’m not following the rules…

I love the Actor’s Studio show on Bravo, so this is my version of it:

  1. Favorite sound – Rain on a day you don’t have to get out of bed
  2. Least favorite sound – the freaking fire alarm going off at the college down the street ever freaking day this summer.
  3. Best song ever written – I don’t know if I can pick one, but Bob Dylan’s lyrics have always had a huge influence on me.
  4. Worst song ever written – When you work at a sleep away summer camp, you hear more teeny bopper music than anyone ever needs in a lifetime. Any of it. Pick one.
  5. Favorite actor and actress – Huge Emma Watson fan. (Shocker, I know). Chris Pratt reminds me of my Robbie, but I’m really upset about this whole break up with Anna Farris.
  6. Who would you want to be for 1 day and why? ( It can be anyone living or dead)

I have a background in art history and spent several months working on a historical fiction book about Da Vinci, and I would love the chance to just slip into his mind for a day and get a real sense of the man himself. Or any of the bad ass female pirates, Anne Bonny, Grace O’Malley, Ching Shih, Mary Read, any of them.

  1. What turns you on?

Intellectual conversation and humor. I love laughing kisses. And also, back muscles.

  1. What turns you off?

Misogyny, the idea that women shouldn’t like sex as much as men. Usually, it’s not stated out loud, but you can just tell.

  1. Give me the worst 5 words ever heard on a first date ( here’s mine: “Is that your real hair?”)

“I can’t cook pasta.” (Okay, it’s four…) He was 26, and that didn’t even scratch the surface of that disaster.

  1. What’s your version of a perfect day?

Robbie and I have seasonal picnics in the park, and I’d love to spend the morning writing and then go apple picking and take some fruit and fresh bread on a picnic. I’m turning him into a museum person too, so maybe throw one of those in. Followed by a play or book reading and a quiet dinner at a good Italian restaurant. Last week we went to Harry Potter World though, and that pretty much made my entire life.

 

And now for a little taste of SEDUCTION en Point

Blurb: When successful TV star of the Queen Anne’s Revenge, Nicco Castillo, finds his boyfriend in bed with another man, he goes full-on Hollywood trainwreck that lands him in ER. Next thing he knows, the producers are shipping him off to Paris to shape up and learn to dance for the next season’s story arc. But his incredibly tempting Parisian ballet instructor, Isabelle La Croix, makes that all too difficult, especially when he learns about her decadent desires–desires Nicco is all too pleased to indulge in. Against the ballet barre, the balcon railing, and wherever and for however long Isabelle is willing to have him.

Author Bio: 

Gemma Snow is the author of several works of erotic and romantic fiction in both the contemporary and historical genres, and enjoys pushing the limits of freedom, feminism, and fun in her stories.  She has been an avid writer for many years, and recently moved back to her home state of New Jersey from Boston, after completing her education in journalism and creative writing.
 
In her free time, she loves to travel, and spent a semester abroad living in a 14th century castle in the Netherlands. When not exploring the world, she likes dreaming up stories, eating spicy food, driving fast cars, and talking to strangers. 
 
Find Gemma on: 

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Filed under Author, Contemporary Romance, First Impressions, Life challenges, Romance, Romance Books

What’s in a title? A lot more than you think, #MFRWauthor

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I’m sure this is an easy feat for most writers, but not for me. I agonize over book titles. Are they too long? Too short? Do they convey the correct theme of the book? Do they even convey the theme of the book? Will it be a memorable title, or one that is easily forgotten in the myriad of published books these days?

Titles can, in all truth, make or break a book. Would you have read any of these books if these were the titles?:

  1. The High-Bouncing Lover
  2. The Last man in Europe
  3. The Dead Un-Dead
  4. Mistress Mary
  5. Nothing New in the West
  6. Wacking Off
  7. The Don’t Build Statues to Businessmen
  8. The Kingdon By The Sea
  9. At this point In time
  10. Private Fleming, His Various Battles

I was a bit surprised at a few of them, and I can in all truthfulness say I wouldn’t have read any one of them except for the Dead Un-Dead, because I think it was a cool, really out-there title. To see the titles these books were actually published as, scroll down when you’re done reading.

You can’t, apparently, trademark a  title. I found this out when I wrote my third book, FIRST IMPRESSIONS ( which, BTW was the original working title of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice) and did a  search to see how many books with the same title there were (423). My second book I called THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME. 366 other authors also called their works of fiction that. SO, how the heck can I can up with a title that (1) hasn’t been used before, and (2) will make the random reader interested in it enough to pick up the book and check it out? Again, no easy feat.

I used to make lists, pages of lists, with book titles. Even then, choosing just one was torture.

I’m so lame at coming up with my book titles I  left the naming of my second book in the Will Cook For Love Series from Lyrical/Shine to the editors. They came up with A SHOT AT LOVE. When you read the book you’ll know it’s the perfect title, but I didn’t have anything even close to that I was working with! Thank God for the people in the know who really really really know what they are doing.

Naming your book is an awful lot like naming your child. You want to give it something with character, essence, personification, and beauty. And your book, to the writer, is your baby, your child, your creation, so you don’t want to let it down by giving it a crummy moniker; one that will inspire ridicule and laughter. Honestly, I pity the poor children of celebrities who have been named after fruits, compass directions, and astrological projections. Sad.

See? You probably thought the title was the easiest thing to come up with.  I bet you didn’t know how hard it really was to name a book? Well…at least it is for me!

Here’s what the above titles were actually published as, and thank goodness they were!!!

  1. The Great Gatsby
  2. 1984
  3. Dracula
  4. The Secret Garden
  5. All Quiet On the Western Front
  6. Portnoy’s Complaint
  7. Valley of the Dolls
  8. Lolita
  9. All the President’s Men
  10. The Red Badge of Courage

When I’m not agonizing over naming books, you can usually find me here:Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me//

Since this is a 52 week blog hop challenge, here are some other authors who are also taking about how they name their books today. Stop by and check out their blogs.

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My #word for 2017: #Compromise…

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Every year I take a theme or a word that epitomizes what I want to accomplish for the following 356 days. Last year, 2016, it was “the Year of YES.” Which basically meant I was going to be open to saying yes to things I usually knee-jerked a NO. A loud, emphatic, I don’t want to, NO!

It worked out pretty well. I did a bunch of stuff that I ordinarily would have shied away from or outright avoided. No one died. No one got maimed. And I didn’t have a stroke, heart attack, or lose my dignity.

Well….

Nevermind.

Anyway….

For 2017 I wanted to continue with the new, open, and willing to put myself out there mentality, so I’m going to be doing something I rarely– if ever– do. Compromise.

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The dictionary defines it this way: an agreement or a settlement of a dispute that is reached by each side making concessions.

My definition is a little more specific in that I will be the one making the concessions. Again, something I rarely, if ever, do. I’ve come to realize after viewing the turmoil this country has found itself in politically, spiritually, and morally, that I like many people, do not often see both sides of an argument. We, and by we, I mean me, tend to form an opinion based on whatever information we happen to see, and then stick with it, oftentimes becoming loudly obnoxious and righteous in expressing that opinion.

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Not anymore. If’ I’ve learned anything in 2016 it’s that every argument and stand has at least 3 sides: mine, the other person’s and the — wait for it — compromise position between the two.

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In 2017 I vow to see that third option as many times as I can and to make the effort to come to compromises which will benefit all sides, not just only my own. When you know better you do better.

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Maturity, thy name is Margaret-Mary. ( let’s hope!)

 

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