Tag Archives: Romantic Fiction

A long flight home…..

I wanted to write this blog before I finish up with all the RWA stuff I have planned to tell you all this week.

Yesterday I flew home from Denver. Due to severe storms in the Colorado area and on the eastern seaboard ( where I was heading) my flight was delayed for 2 hours, 90 minutes of it spent on the tarmac just waiting in line to lift off.

Not fun. Not even a little bit.

There were two shining lights during this waiting time, though, that made this trip home  one of my favorite ones to date of all the places I’ve traveled.

First, some backstory. My husband loves to fly on Southwest ( me, not so much) so he booked my trip through that carrier to Denver. I always sit in exactly the same seat on Southwest if I can. Last row, right before the lavatories, close to the stew crew and the kitchen. Why, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you. My legs cramp when I sit down for too long and in this seat I can stretch them out fully without worrying I’m going to trip someone coming down the aisle. I can stand whenever I want ( that is if the seatbelt sign isn’t illuminated) and stretch, plus I tend to drink a lot more water on flights to stay hydrated. And when you drink more, you…..you can finish this sentence!

So, I sat in the same seat as always when I boarded. About ten minutes later the plane was almost full when two lovely women around a similar age to me came down the aisle and asked if they could sit in my row. Of course they could! And did.

Well, when you put two or more women of a similar age together, conversation will ensue, and ensue it did. While we waited FOREVER on the tarmac all three of us got to talking. They asked what I’d been doing in Denver – working or vaca, and I told them both and then explained why I was there and what I do for a living. To say they were excited would be an understatement!
By telling them I was a writer and of romantic fiction, it opened a flood gate of more questions about writing, publishing, how  I get my ideas, did I always want to write — and on and on.

It was wonderful!!! Truly wonderful!! For a few hours I actually felt like a famous author instead of the relative unknown that I am. I was so enamored with these two lovely women I gave them each a signed copy of COOKING WITH KANDY that I just happened to have in my carryon. I was never a Boy Scout but that thing about always being prepared is smart! I also gave them some swag and my business card with all my author info on it.

Now, when I was reaching up to put my carryon back into the overhead compartment, the second shining light appeared in the guise of another lovely woman who was sitting in the row in front of ours. She excused herself, told me she hadn’t been eavesdropping ( with the loud way I talk it’s  unavoidable for people around me not to!), but she was a Librarian, and could she have my card so she could look up my books?

Well, this is me, peeps, so I did one better – I gave her a copy of my newest release CAN’T STAND THE HEAT, which I also had in my carryon ( see? always  prepared!) as a donation for her library, and I gave her my  business card as well so she could look up my other titles.

Best. Trip. Ever.

I lovelovelove making new friends, and friends who happen to like reading are my absolute favorite people! So, Mary Pat and Honoree – here’s to you!

I told those lovely ladies this, so I’ll tell you, too; you can find me here if you need me:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// Book Me

 

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Filed under #RWA2018, Romance, Strong Women

A sit-down interview with author Mary Morgan and Rory MacGregor

You all know by now that I lovelovelove when one of my Wild Rose Press sistahs comes for a visit. Today I have award winning author MARY MORGAN visiting and she’s brought along her hero in her newest book OATH OF A WARRIOR, Rory MacGregor with her for a little sit down tete-a-tete.

Let’s get right to it!

“Morning, Mary. ‘Morning, Rory.

Hello Peggy! Thanks for allowing us to visit your lovely blog. Rory MacGregor has graciously agreed to be here today. Though he can’t stay long (terms set forth from the Fae realm), I am confident he can share some insight into his story and the Fae realm.

Peggy: Since you’ve been on our earth for thousands of years, can you share with us how old you are?

Rory: (He arches an eyebrow in amusement) Old is a term for the weathered foliage in our kingdom. I am considered ancient by your standard of years.

Peggy: When Prince Conn sent you back in time to heal your wounds, were you prepared to do so, or did you have an alternate plan?

Rory: At the time, I was standing on the abyss of darkness. My soul was entering what we call the Realm of Shadows. It is a desolate, bleak, and tortured existence with no hope of returning. The prince was unwise in sending me back in time in my condition. Regardless, I am fortunate that the circumstances proved to be in our favor—mine and Erina’s. I will be forever grateful that the Fates granted us this second chance.

Peggy: Can you share what drew you to Erina?

Rory: (Leaning back, he smiles) Her soul called out to mine, and I accepted. Furthermore, it was her great love of the land and animals. Endearing qualities, I admire.

Peggy: What is one word that best describes you?

Rory: It would depend on whom ye asked. Since my brother, Liam, is not here to offer a protest, I would say honorable.

Peggy: Do you think the author portrayed you accurately?

Rory: Aye, she kens me well, and I am sorry for causing her so much angst in writing this tale.

Peggy: What is your greatest fear?

Rory: To speak a fear out loud is to encourage its existence. I’d rather not bring misfortune to our life.

Peggy: What is the perfect romantic date in the Fae realm?

Rory: Holding Erina in my arms spread out among the heather and foxglove on a warm summer night as we watch the stars near the Waterfall of Life.

Peggy: What is your favorite color?

Rory: The rose blush that begins on my lovely wife’s face, and then continues to deepen the more I trail kisses over her skin.

Peggy: What is your favorite drink?

Rory: Honeyed ambrosia, especially procured from the Fae Pleasure Gardens.

Peggy: What is your favorite dessert?

Rory: (A slow sensuous smile appears) My wife, Erina.

Peggy: Is your book part of a series? What does the future hold for the readers of the series?

Rory: Aye, ’tis a series. My brother, Liam’s story is next. ’Tis called, Trial of a Warrior. In addition, I believe the author is planning a fourth book on our mentor and one of the greatest Fenian Warriors in the Fae realm, Aidan Kerrigan. His story is called, Destiny of a Warrior.

Peggy: I’m in serious love right now, folks!!! Le Swoon!!!!!!! Thanks, Mary, for bringing the delicious Rory for a visit today!

 Can a timeline be rewritten for love?

Blurb:

“You met them in the Order of the Dragon Knights. Now, journey to the realm of the Fae and witness their legends!”

Fenian Warrior, Rory MacGregor’s love conquests are legendary, but he has never spoken of the one mortal female who captured his heart. After his dark secret is finally revealed, he is ordered to return and seal the wounds left open by her death. Yet, he finds the timeline altered and swears an oath to rewrite fate, even if it brings about his own death.

Erina MacIntyre is known for her healing herbs and love charms. Determined to aid others, she refuses to listen to the whispers that call her a witch. When a Highlander steps forth into her path, he ignites a thread of strange familiarity and sparks a flame of desire she is unable to control.

Can the destiny of two lovers find love once more among the ashes of death and betrayal? Or will history repeat itself, leaving a scorching path of destruction for both mortals and Fae alike?

Excerpt:

“Erina, mo ghrá,” he groaned, taking her mouth with savage intensity. She tasted of honey and spices, filling him completely and easing the torment that continually plagued him.

Breaking free, he placed his hands on either side of the door. Giving her all of him required something more from Erina. Without the assurance of accepting him for what he was, Rory would be a lost man.

“Are ye certain ye want to ken all of me? I want ye as sure as the sun rises and sets over the land each day, but ken this, Erina—there is more to me than a simple bedding. There are things about me that might frighten ye. What I’m about to share with ye may cause ye to question my existence, or worse, my sanity.”

Her laugh was seductive and soothing as she wrapped her arms around his neck. “From the moment ye stepped through those trees that first day, I realized ye were not like any man I had encountered. It was as if the trees parted and ye came forth from inside them.” She brushed her fingers along his brow. “For one, ye have the most mesmerizing eyes and they shift colors.”

“And the second?”

Her face turned a rosy glow, yet, she held his gaze. “I thought your body chiseled from the old Gods, especially with all the markings on your back and arms.”

His gaze swept over hers. “I am nae God, Erina, though some would call me a demon.”

She traced a finger down along his arm and shook her head. “Ye are not a monster, but I am nae fool. Ye are not like other men, Rory. I have seen the markings on your body elsewhere.” Her finger curved around his shoulder and he trembled. “They are similar to the ones on the standing stones carved by the ancients.”

Rory fought the tide of emotions sweeping through him. She had come to the conclusion all on her own. “And ye would not flee if I told ye I was one of those ancients? One where the bards wove tales of giants who lived thousands of years ago among your own people? Others would call the story incredulous and filled with heathen words.” He held his breath, fearing her reply.

The smile she gave him speared straight to his soul. “Nae. I would not flee.”

Buy Links: Amazon // Nook // iBooks // The Wild Rose Press //

A wee bit about Mary Morgan:

Award-winning Celtic paranormal romance author, Mary Morgan, resides in Northern California, with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to retur

Mary’s passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. She spent far too much time daydreaming and was told quite often to remove her head from the clouds. It wasn’t until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling–writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stori

If you enjoy history, tortured heroes, and a wee bit of magic, then time-travel within the pages of her books.

You can connect with Mary here:

Website //Blog // Twitter // Facebook // Goodreads // Amazon // Pinterest // Instagram // BookBub

 

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#Saturday Seven #LASReviews

Nora Roberts/JD Robb is my favorite author of all time. Bar, none. Many of her books deal with families ( as do mine) and as secondary characters with investment in the plot resolution, she typically adds children into the mix. Gotta love a bad boy who loses his heart to his lover’s kids! So, in no real order, these are my favorite Roberts/Robb books with kids as a major driving force to the story.

The Heart of Devin McCade

Sheriff Devin MacKade has always known his destiny was to serve and protect the small town of Antietam, Maryland—and for a long while he thought that future would include Cassie Connor. But when Cassie married the wrong man, Devin did the honorable thing and kept his feelings to himself. Now that Cassie’s divorced, Devin can finally follow his heart. Question is, can Cassie?  Cassie’s children, Connor and Emma love Devin and he them. I sigh every time I read the interactions between him and Emma.

All I want for Christmas

Single dad Mac Taylor is about to find out the lengths to which his mischievous twin boys, Zeke and Zach, will go to find him the Christmas gift of new love when they send a special wish for a new mom to Old Saint Nick… The twins wish for a mom for Christmas from Santa. Le sigh…..

The Next Always

The historic hotel in BoonsBoro, Maryland, has endured war and peace, changing hands, even rumored hauntings. Now it’s getting a major facelift from the Montgomery brothers and their eccentric mother. As the architect of the family, Beckett has little time for a social life. But there’s another project he’s got his eye on: the girl he’s been waiting to kiss since he was sixteen.

After losing her husband and returning to her hometown, Clare Brewster soon settles into her life as the mother of three young sons while running the town’s bookstore. Though busy, Clare is drawn across the street by Beckett’s transformation of the old inn, wanting to take a closer look…at both the building and the man behind it…  The scene where Beckett asks Clare’s boys if he can marry her is so heartwarming, I’m sighing writing this just remembering it!

Sea Swept


A champion boat racer, Cameron Quinn traveled the world spending his winnings on champagne and women. But when his dying father calls him home to care for Seth, a troubled young boy not unlike Cameron once was, his life changes overnight.

After years of independence, Cameron has to learn to live with his brothers again, while he struggles with cooking, cleaning, and caring for a difficult boy. Old rivalries and new resentments flare between Cameron and his brothers, but they try to put aside their differences for Seth’s sake. In the end, a social worker will decide Seth’s fate, and as tough as she is beautiful, she has the power to bring the Quinns together—or tear them apart… The relationship between Cameron and Seth is more father and son than brother to brother, and it’s endearing. Talk about a bad boy with a  heart of gold!

Red Lily

Hayley Phillips came to Memphis hoping for a new start, for herself and her unborn child. She wasn’t looking for a handout from her distant cousin Roz, just a job at her thriving In the Garden nursery. What she found was a home surrounded by beauty and the best friends she’s ever had—including Roz’s son Harper. To Hayley’s chagrin, she has begun to dream about Harper—as much more than a friend…

If Hayley gives in to her desire, she’s afraid the foundation she’s built with Harper will come tumbling down. And that wouldn’t be the only consequence, since her dreams are tangled up with Roz and the nursery. Hayley will have to put the past behind her to know her own heart again—and to decide whether she’s willing to risk it…

The In Death books – Bella Eve (Born in Death)

Just as Eve Dallas begins to investigate the grisly double homicide of two young lovers—both employees of the same prestigious accounting firm—her friend Mavis need a favor. One of the moms-to-be in Mavis’s birthing class has gone missing. Normally, such a case would be turned over to Missing Persons. But Mavis wants no one else on the job—and Eve can’t say no.

Now Eve’s trying to track down the missing woman, while simultaneously unearthing the deals and double-crosses hidden in the files of some of the city’s richest and most secretive citizens, in a race against this particularly vicious killer. Luckily, her multimillionaire husband Roarke’s expertise comes in handy with the number crunching. But as he mines the crucial data that will break the case wide open, Eve faces an all too real danger in the world of flesh and blood..Mavis goes into labor and Roarke and Dallas are her birth coaches, which, if you’ve read any of the series, you know is so comical it’s more than laughable! But the first time Eve holds her name sake in her arms is the stuff great writing is made for!

(Apprentice in Death)

The shots came quickly, silently, and with deadly accuracy. Within seconds, three people were dead at Central Park’s ice-skating rink. The victims: a talented young skater, a doctor, and a teacher. As random as random can be.

Eve Dallas has seen a lot of killers during her time with the NYPSD but never one like this. A review of the security videos reveals that the victims were killed with a tactical laser rifle fired by a sniper, who could have been miles away when the trigger was pulled. And though the list of locations where the shooter could have set up seems endless, the number of people with that particular skill set is finite: police, military, professional killer.

Eve’s husband, Roarke, has unlimited resources—and genius—at his disposal. And when his computer program leads Eve to the location of the sniper, she learns a shocking fact: There were two—one older, one younger. Someone is being trained by an expert in the science of killing, and they have an agenda. Central Park was just a warm-up. And as another sniper attack shakes the city to its core, Eve realizes that though we’re all shaped by the people around us, there are those who are just born evil… the last 10 pages of this book are priceless as Roarke and Eve finish up the case they are on and then hastily make their way back to Bella’s birthday. When the toddler sees their bruised and battered faces, she kisses their bruises away and even the perpetual snarky Dallas looses her heart.

Since this blog hop is inspired by the Long and Short Reviews site, click on these other authors and see what their #Saturday Sevens look like

1. ELF the Reading Addict 4. Marianne Arkins 7. Megan Slayer
2. Lisabet Sarai (giveaway too!) 5. Welcome to my World of Dreams
3. Peggy Jaeger 6. Lydia Schoch

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#SaturdaySeven #L&SReviews

As a writer, I never like to give advice on writing because I don’t feel I’ve suffered enough for my art yet. And yes, I know how pretentious that sounds. Hee Hee. But I do listen to the advice of writers who are much better than I am and probably always will be. So, here are my 7 favorite pieces of writing advice from what I consider masters of the written word.

1. “You fail only if you stop writing” ~Ray Bradbury

2. “A writer never finds the time to write. A write makes it. If you don’t have the drive, the discipline, and the desire, then you can have all the talent in the world and you aren’t going to finish a book” ~Nora Roberts

3. “Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself… It’s a self-exploratory operation that is endless. An exorcism of not necessarily his demon, but of his divine discontent.” ~ Harper Lee

4. “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” ~ Ernest Hemingway

5. “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” ~ Toni Morrison

6. “Read, read, read. Read everything – trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it. Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window.”  ~William Faulkner

7. “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.”  ~ Stephen King

This is a weekly blog for writers. Click this link to see 7 other things writers are talking about. Saturday Seven

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I’m #OnSale…. well, my books are!

In anticipation of WILL COOK FOR LOVE being released on 4.3.18, Kensington/Lyrical Shine has placed books 1 and 2 in the series on sale. If you’re looking for a new series of romance, where the women are smart, sexy and strong, these are the books for you. Just click on the links below the photos to order your copies today! The sale goes from 2.25.18 until 4.1.18

COOKING WITH KANDY

Sugar and spice and everything sexy make the perfect recipe for romance in this brand-new series by Peggy Jaeger. Look for exclusive recipes in each book!

Kandy Laine built her wildly popular food empire the old-fashioned way—starting with the basic ingredients of her grandmother’s recipes and flavoring it all with her particular brand of sweet spice. From her cookbooks to her hit TV show, Kandy is a kitchen queen—and suddenly someone is determined to poison her cup. With odd accidents and threatening messages piling up, strong-willed Kandy can’t protest when her team hires someone to keep her safe—but she can’t deny that the man for the job looks delicious. . .

Josh Keane is a private investigator, not a bodyguard. But with one eyeful of Kandy’s ebony curls and dimpled smile, he’s signing on to uncover who’s cooking up trouble for the gorgeous chef. As the attraction between them starts to simmer, it’s not easy to keep his mind on the job, but when the strange distractions turn to true danger, he’ll stop at nothing to keep Kandy safe—and show her that a future together is on the menu. . .

 

A SHOT AT LOVE

Nothing’s impossible when love is on the menu. In Peggy Jaeger’s luscious series, the only thing more tempting than a delicious meal is a truly delectable romance . . .
Look for exclusive recipes in each book!  
 
Photographer Gemma Laine is looking for arresting faces on the streets of Manhattan when her camera captures something shocking—a triple murder. In that moment, she becomes a target for the mob—and a top priority for a very determined, breathtakingly handsome, FBI special agent. With deadlines to meet and photo shoots on her calendar, Gemma chafes at the idea of protection, but every moment she spends under his watchful eye is a temptation to lose herself in his muscular arms . . .

With two of his men and one crucial witness dead, Special Agent Kyros Pappandreos can’t afford to be distracted. But Gemma is dazzling—and her connection to Kandy Laine’s high-profile cooking empire makes her an especially easy mark for some very bad people. Keeping her safe is much more pleasure than business, but as the heat between them starts to sizzle, Ky is set to investigate whether they have a shot at love . . .

PreOrder now:

CAN’T STAND THE HEAT

In Peggy Jaeger’s delectable series, delicious food is just an appetizer for life’s main course: the kind of love that feeds your soul. 
 
With three successful TV series under her belt, including her cousin Kandy’s, executive producer Stacy Peters is ready to helm her own show. But to make that happen, she has to do her network boss one favor first—spend two months on a ranch in Montana wrangling the notoriously difficult director of Beef Battles. Apparently, he eats producers for breakfast. Yet all Stacy can think when she meets the lean, rugged man is how hungry he makes her . . .

Dominic Stamp—Nikko to his very few friends—has had enough interference from TV newbies. And when Stacy climbs out of the car in Montana, he’s not convinced she’s even old enough to drive, much less produce his show. But he can’t deny that the long-legged blonde with the stubborn will and the dazzling smile whets his appetite. And as Stacy proves her talent with the crew and the budget alike, Nikko vows to prove to her that love is on the menu for both of them . . .

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Alpha Male, Author, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Family Saga, Food lover, Foodie, Kensington Publishers, love, Romance, Romance Books, romantic suspense, Strong Women, The Laine Women

#BookPromo: At First Blush

Today I’m happy to welcome and help promote my dear writing friend, Marianne Rice and her new release, At First Blush

Book Blurb:

Alexis Le Blanc enjoys her simple life in Crystal Cove, Maine. After taking a chance on romance and getting rejected, she has given up on love. Now she devotes all her time to running her family’s winery, Coastal Vines. She wants to keep it small and traditional, but her parents have other ideas—hence why they hire some big-shot marketing executive from Napa Valley to rev up business.

When Benito Martelli shows up in her family’s tasting room, she’s more than stunned to discover he’s the man who wined and dined her the night before. Alexis is beyond peeved at his deception in trying to get into her good graces for the sake of making money on her winery. At first, she wants nothing to do with him or his big business ideas, but she’s pleasantly surprised when they come to a compromise, and even more surprised when she gives in to the sparks between them.

Unfortunately, things don’t go quite as planned and Alexis is faced with complications she never could have predicted. Promises and secrets unravel, and she must decide if love and wine are as well paired as she hoped.

 Buy Links:

Amazon // iBooks// Kobo // B&N

 

BIO:

Marianne Rice writes contemporary romantic fiction set in small New England towns. She loves high heels, reading romance, scarfing down dark chocolate, gulping wine, and Chris Hemsworth. Oh, and her husband and three children. You can follow her all over social media, and keep up to tabs with her latest releases on her website: www.mariannerice.com

You can connect with Marianne here:

Facebook // Amazon // Instagram // Twitter // Goodreads // Pinterest // Book Bub // Book + Main //

 

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Open doors…or closed doors?

My, my, my….there are so many ways to interpret what the title of this week’s blog challenge is. I’m going to go with the first thing that came to MY mind when I read it, namely, as a romance writer, do you write sex scenes openly, or do you leave them for behind closed doors?

The first actual romantic story I ever read was Pride and Prejudice. 

The sexiest thing about that book was its lack of sex. No hand holding, no touching except with gloves on and while dancing, no stolen kisses behind chaperone eyes. Lingering looks and side glances were the extent of the sexual tension shown. And I wouldn’t even go so far as to call it tension. More…expectation.

For hundreds of years after that book was published, the majority of romantic fiction remained the same. The hero and heroine fell in love, had their troubles, then got married. The End. The wedding night was never detailed; their children seemed to be sent from God as immaculate conceptions. You literally didn’t know how they got it on in the bedroom.

Even in the movies things weren’t shown. Remember the great staircase scene in Gone With The Wind?

A drunken Rhett scoops his wife, Scarlett, up in his arms and carries her up that grand staircase, the light fading behind them the higher he goes, his intent obvious. End of scene. Cut to the next morning with Scarlett lounging in bed, a girlish blush on her cheeks, and our imaginations left to run rampant on what occurred after the fade out and the bedroom door was shut in our faces. (Click here to see the actual filmed scene)

Fast forward a half century.

A little independent movie called The Devil in Miss Jones opened and sex – raw, in your face ( and every other body part) sex between two people…and even more than 2 people at once – was now on view for all to see and be…entertained by. It wasn’t shown in back street, urine smelling alleyway hole-in-the-wall porno theaters, but right on Main Street, USA movie houses. The people who stood in line for hours weren’t pedophiles or sex perverts ( although, I’m sure there were a few of those!) but everyday men and women, NORMAL people who were intrigued -and let’s be honest, titillated – about this movie and its usually forbidden subject manner.  It became an overnight cult classic that was accepted and viewed by the mainstream majority.

If you could watch sexual acts among consenting adults openly in the movie theater, sitting next to your neighbor, your boss, your politicians, even your doctor or dentist, why the heck couldn’t you buy a book and read about it openly as well?

Jacqueline Suzanne thought the same thing and wrote a little fictional tome called Valley of the Dolls.

 And while this wasn’t classified as a romance story but as literary fiction – nowadays it would be referred to as Women’s Fiction – it was a runaway bestseller and the major reason it was is because it talked about people having sex — and showing it!! All kinds of sex in all kinds of places – and I’m not just referring to locales, but to different orifices! (Orifi?)

Writers Rosemary Rogers and Kathleen E. Woodiwiss thought the same thing. Why couldn’t you show the physical side of a relationship? In detail? 

This new openness about sexual acts opened that bedroom door and they invited us in. All in! Before those two burst on the romance writing scene, if you wanted to read about what consenting adults did in the privacy of their bedrooms, you had to go to a certain brand of book shop and wander in the erotica section because that’s where the books with sex were kept. Or behind the counter and you had to – blushingly – ask for them by name and author.

 Rogers and Woodiwiss made it acceptable for the average romance reading MOM to buy a book with detailed sex scenes in them at the town independent bookstore, or the local Walmart, Target, and KMart.

Once that bedroom door was opened, it hardly ever closed again. Sweet romances still sell – a lot – but the majority of romance books written and sold now all have open bedroom ( and every other conceivable place and room) doors.

I’m with the majority on this one. I like reading about open bedroom doors and I write about open bedroom doors. In its baldest sense, I have an open door policy for my writing. Pun intended. I read all genres of romance except pure erotica. I do, though, read and enjoy erotic ROMANCES because –HELLO!!!– romance is the major part of the equation. A really good writer can devise a “love scene” where you never even realize the physicality of what you’re reading as much as you do the emotions involved in the physical aspects of what’s on the page. And let’s face it, if you’re getting a little…turned on…both emotionally and physically by what you’re reading, that author has done her job. I long to be that type of writer!

To quote the late and amazeballs George Michael,

“Sex is natural, sex is good
Not everybody does it
But everybody should
Sex is natural, sex is fun
Sex is best when it’s, one on one”
from I WANT YOUR SEX

Now, there are a bunch more authors in this blog challenge who may have interpreted this blog title just a little bit differently than I have. Let’s hop over and see what they’ve come up with, shall we?

 

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Filed under #Mfrwauthors, Author, Contemporary Romance, Life challenges, love, research, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women

I’m so Excited! #newrelease, #coming soon to @KensingtonBooks

I’m so excited. In just a few more days ( April 4th) COOKING WITH KANDY releases.

This is the first of my new Kensington/Lyrical book series WILL COOK FOR LOVE about the lives, loves, and recipes of the Laine Family. Kandy Laine is the first, with her sister Gemma coming later in A SHOT AT LOVE

and then cousin Stacy makes an appearance in 2018 in CAN’T STAND THE HEAT? I’ve got two more books lined up after that, as well. More on them in the future.

But back to being SO EXCITED!! And yes, I feel like an honorary Pointer Sister. And if you don’t get that reference it means you were born after the 1980’s!

This will be my first book for Kensington/Lyrical and I am over the moon. I join a very well established stable of writers of all genres in the country’s oldest family owned book empire – and I don’t use that term loosely!

I am truly blessed at this point in my career to be writing for such a well-respected house.

Yippie!
So, if you see me in the next few days and I look a little dazed and unfocused, you’ll know why: the excitement is getting to me and I am just silly with it.

I’ll be hanging out at all my Social media sites, esp. on 4.4.17, so if you want to find me, look here:Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triberr

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Filed under Author, Contemporary Romance, Cooking, Family Saga, female friends, Friends, Kensington Publishers, love, Lyrical Author, Netgalley Reviewer, Romance, Romance Books, RWA, Strong Women, The Laine Women

The art of #naming your characters

I love names. Especially names where you can actually see the origin. Like SIOBHAN ( Irish!) NICOLLETTE (French) ANTONIO (Italian.)

Naming characters has always been a little bit of an obsession for me because I like to find names that actually mean something inherent in the person. For instance, my name, Margaret, means PEARL. If I was going to write a story with that name as my heroine’s ( and I never will because I hate my name!!!)  I would most likely give her attributes associated with pearls – strong outer shells, they take a lifetime to evolve, they are rare. You get the idea.

When I start a new book I always start with my characters first and the naming process usually takes me a few days to get right, especially with my hero and heroine. I want their names to connect, to go together, to be individualistic, but nonetheless when you hear the names mentioned you think “couple.” Like Oprah and Stedman, Goldie and Kurt, Elizabeth and Darcy. See? They go together ( why does that song from GREASE keep playing in my mind??)

Some writers spend more time naming their fictional characters than normal, non-writing people do naming their children. I feel both are crucial. You don’t want to name your alpha hero Marmeduke and please don’t name your child Zippity Doo Cogwheel or FeMale Jones. Don’t laugh…I have a doctor friend who told me a story of her OB/GYN internship days and a couple named their daughter after the name tag the hospital gave her: Female. But they thought it was pronounced  Fe-mal-ay. People are weird. Names shouldn’t be.

There are as many books and websites detailing names as there are, well, names. Baby Naming books get new editions yearly, as the popular and trendy names for kids change with the culture. Old Bibles are great places to get names especially if you are writing an historical novel. Writers who cater to fantasy or science fiction have a great deal of leeway in naming their characters because they can call them whatever they want ( like Zippity Doo Cogwheel) since they are inventing their own world with their own rules.

You don’t even need a baby naming book – although they are a fast, easy reference tool. You’re on your computer, so just get to your search engine. If you click Google images and type in name-meaning ( and then the name you want, like Margaret) you will get an unlimited array of images with the meaning of the name. That’s how I got the Margaret sign above.

Naming your characters and then giving them attributes associated with the name is a fabulous way of actually bringing your characters to life and having them be memorable to readers. Would Scarlett O’Hara have been such an icon if Gone With The Wind was published with the original name Margaret Mitchell gave her of Pansy? “Frankly, Pansy, I don’t give a damn!” doesn’t have the weight of “Frankly, Scarlett, I don’t give a damn!”  Pansy means “thought”, Scarlett means “Sent from Heaven.” Now we all know Scarlett O’Hara never gave a “thought” to anything but herself and Tara, and as seen through the eyes of the men in her realm, sent from Heaven seems appropriate, no?

So, when you decide to name your characters ( or your children!) please please please give it careful, complete, thought. Don’t just pick a name out of the air or call them fruit ( anyone remember Apple Martin?) or weigh them down with a moniker they’ll never live down like Dweezle or Moon Unit. Give them normal, easily pronounced, meaningful names. After all, you want your readers to discuss your book with their friends and remember the characters names don’t you? You seriously don’t want them to struggle to remember what you called your hero and heroine. And if you’re really good – and very lucky – those character names will stand the test of literary time, like Elizabeth and Darcy, Jane and Rochester, Scarlett and Rhett all have.

When I’m not naming characters, you can find me here:Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triberr

 

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Filed under Alpha Hero, Author, Author Branding, branding, Contemporary Romance, Literary characters, research, Romance, Romance Books, Strong Women

That old #adage Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover, #JABBIC, is now a #contest..

SO, every year, the HOUSTON BAY AREA RWA Chapter hosts a Book cover contest titled, you got it! JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER.

This year, two of my current titles, A KISS UNDER THE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS and THE VOICES OF ANGELS are among the entries for the Contemporary Romance category. Both covers were designed by uber talent Rae Monet and I’d reallyreallyreally appreciate your vote! I’ve enclosed the link above. I’m on page 2 in the contemporary category – just scroll down once you’re there.

Here are the covers. The highest you can score them is 5 stars (pleasepleaseplease). Shameless, I know I am.akissucl_850-1 perf5.000x8.000.indd

When I’m not being shameless, you can find me here:

Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me//

 

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Filed under A kiss Under the Christmas LIghts, Author, Characters, Contemporary Romance, Life challenges, Literary characters, love, MacQuire Women, Romance, Romance Books, RWA, Strong Women, The Voices of Angels, WIld Rose Press AUthor