Thursday, March 29, 2007

Spring things that inspire me

Just to be different, I'm not going to promote any of my books today. (I don't have anything coming out soon, so it's not that big a deal.) Instead, I'm going to wax poetic *snort* about spring. Actually, there are only a few things about spring that I really like...getting out the camping gear to fondle lovingly while I dream about all the places I could go camping if only I wasn't afraid of bears, is one of those things.

Camping is my most favoritest thing to do..it makes me giddy just thinking about it. I can spend hours and hours looking at camping gear even though I don't need any of it. Last year we bought a small trailer and we're hoping to get out more often now, since it's MUCH easier to camp with kids in a trailer than in a tent (2 year old boy in a tent is just a disaster waiting to happen, trust me) I've spent the last few months looking at Provincial Park maps, reading all my Kevin Callan books, and trying out new camp recipies.

My other favorite thing to do in spring is shop for plants, seeds and flower pots. Now, you should know, I have an amazing knack for killing plants. When we go to the garden center, my husband usually likes to ask me if I've picked my latest victims yet. In the 4 years we've lived in this house, I've managed to plant the vegetable garden once and I think we harvested 2 tiny zucchini and a handful of pathetic tomatoes. It doesn't stop me from trying though. One of these years I'll have a bounty of veggies to deal with, and when I do, my husband will be longing for the days when the black thumb of death ruled supreme...the days when every single meal served didn't contain zucchini.

OK, just a tiny bit of promo. My short story, Courting Damnation, releases July 1 from Forbidden Publications...and it's a camping story. I can't seem to help myself, so there will probably be more paranormal tales set in the wilds of Northern Ontario. Now I'm off to plan out this years garden mwahahahaha!
posted by Jennie Andrus at 6:07 pm 1 comments

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I Travel

I don’t know about you, but one of the things I love most about a story is the journey it takes me on.

We start off with characters who are at one point in their lives and journey with them as they travel the hills and dales of their relationships, we’re on board for every trial and tribulation and have booked a ticket to share in the joys of their greatest triumphs.

And when the writer is rich on description then we come away with a whole album of photos of the journey we shared. I’ve never been to Hawaii or the mid-west of America or even to Australia, but I’ve read stories that transported me straight to Maui, or Denver or Sydney and it’s been a lot more pleasurable than a 20-hour flight in cattle class!

Thinking about this made me realise that perhaps I’m more of a travel agent than I ever imagined.

Without leaving the confines of Europe, I can count Turkey, Greece, Finland, Malta, France, Spain, Majorca, Germany and, of course Britain, amongst the settings for several of my books.

Now take Greece – that’s easily one of my favourite places on earth, so no surprise that Santorini and Crete are the main locations I use in Revenant, and in ‘Softly, Softly, Catchee Monkey’ in the Jaded Beasts V: Monkey & Rooster digest, the story was set deep in the heart of Athens.

When I first visited Santorini I fell in love with it so much that, when my boyfriend and I discovered we’d missed the last ferry of the week to Naxos, we didn’t care. We had a blissful extra few days on the island before we got a flight to Mykonos, another island I love and which makes an appearance in The Book of Lies & Falsehood.

Like Jack in Revenant, I’ve excavated in Crete. Unlike him, I’ve handled 4000-year old human bones, helped discover a sacrificial cave high on a clifftop with terrifying, vertigo-inducing drops to the sea, poked around Mochlos for obsidian and rung the church bell to fetch back the boat from the village across the water.

Athens is a mighty city that takes my breath away. In ‘Softly, Softly, Catchee Monkey’, Kon acts as a tour guide to get close to the heroine, Xinran. I wish when I’d gone the first time I had such a hunky guide! Instead, I had years of reading behind me. I knew that a place that had housed one of the greatest civilisations known to man was bound to house more than a few sparks of contemporary passion.

I’m blessed that one of my closest friends lives in Finland and extends an open door policy for whenever I want to visit. One year I was invited to share Christmas with her family at a log cabin in Lapland, where I got to see some of the beautiful traditional Sami costumes and buy my very own shaman drum. This led recently to my werewolf story ‘Naoi’de’. It was very easy writing a hero like Kari when I have such a thing for those beautiful slanted blue eyes of true Sami men…

These days, I can’t travel as far as widely as I used to – unfortunately real life stepped in – so for me, the next best thing is to write about the wonderful places I’ve visited in the hope that I can spark the travel bug in some of my readers.

I’d love to hear if you’ve ever based a story outside of your home country and if you wrote from imagination, or from your experiences overseas (or in the case of Canada, over the border!)

They say travel broadens the mind, and for me that’s true – but it also does a good job of broadening my inspiration.

- Olivia
http://www.triqueta.net/olivialorenz
posted by Olivia Lorenz at 11:22 am 1 comments

Monday, March 26, 2007

Welcome from the Daughters


New Tortuga: Monday's Child


In the spaceport city of New Tortuga all things are possible. It’s a crossroads. New lives begin and old ones are lost in this bustling city. Here in a time where retro is the new NEW, resurgence in popularity of an Old Earth nursery rhyme brings us to our first story.


We start with Monday’s Child, so fair of face.


Hello all! Jessica Russell here! I'm a newly pub'd author with a tentative release of beginning of May. No website yet, but my web wizard from Spunpuppy Webworks is whipping one up for me!

I write primarily science fiction/urban fantasy with romantic elements and I've contracted a seven part series based in New Tortuga with Aspen Mountain Press.

Here's my beautiful cover! Ianna was such a wonderful character to write!
Anyway, I hope you enjoy it. And before you ask...yes her hair is supposed to be green. :-)
posted by Dawn Montgomery at 10:19 pm 1 comments

Friday, March 23, 2007

Can I get a wooohooo?

Ok so life has been beating me black and blue for the past 3 months. But things are slowly starting to look up. In my writing world anyway LOL

I recently sold 4 books to Aspen Mountain Press.

Luck of the Irish - Tentatively March 30, 2007 Aspen Mountain Press

When Dina's boss assigns her to review a local family restaurant called Luck of the Irish on St. Patrick's Day of all days, she isn't happy. Upon entering the establishment and seeing all the staff dressed as Leprechauns, she expects passable food and annoyingly cheerful service. What she got left her breathless.
Connor had always known what his destiny held in store for him. When the gods finally bestowed their gift upon him, he never expected his destiny to take place in a pair of sea blue eyes. Now, he finally understood why a four leaf clover is considered good luck.

And the next 3 books in the Blood Red series, Chronicles of the Cursed:
Chronicles of the Cursed: The Ravenson Project - Tentatively July 6, 2007 Aspen Mountain Press

Malek DeWinter, learnt the hard way that the Raven Lord he'd thought had aved him from death so many years ago, wasn't what he appeared to be. After a night of passionate lovemaking with his new found mate, he wakes from his cursed sleep to find himself chained to the dungeon walls. With his mate at the mercy of his Lord, the house he'd thought had abandoned him comes to his rescue. Can he make things right before it's too late? Or will he lose his true love to the hands of a traitor?

Chronicles of the Cursed: Blood Hunted - NoDate Set Aspen Mountain Press

Nicolai had lost all hope of finding his mate. A hundred years alone left a vampire jaded. Until he agreed to take on a fiery little spy who saved his house, his Sire and his heart. Now he just needs to convince her that joining his side is the only way to survive the coming battle and remove the Demon from their midst once and for all.

Kelly Ravenson, had been through enough heartache and heartbreak since being turned to know that trust needed to be earned. The women of Raven house needed her. Could she really leave them unprotected just to follow her heart?

Chronicles of the Cursed: Touch of the Wolf - NoDate Set Aspen Mountain Press

New to this world of darkness, Xavier is paired with a human experienced in the ways of Wolf house to attend him. When they'd introduced him to the woman, he'd thought Lady Bella insane. Annette Valdetti was difficult, head strong and completely immune to his charms. Will he wait too long to realize how truly special she is?

Annette didn't want to be the newest wolf's Attendant; she had enough on her plate helping Lady Bella with her Keeper duties. Unfortunately she never could say no to the Lady of the house. The cub was arrogant, conceited and she'd fallen completely in love with him. Can she teach the cub how to survive in this new world he's found himself in and protect her heart before it's too late?

I don't have any new cover's to show yet, but when I do. I promise to show them here.
I'm in edits hell LOL for The Prophecy, so I won't be around as much as I'd like but I do answer e-mails. So feel free to e-mail me.

Aline
posted by Aline de Chevigny at 10:01 pm 2 comments

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

D'Arc Update - What I've Been Up To

A lot's been going on since I last checked in with you all. Working backwards - yesterday I finished Sons of Amber: Michael, the sequel to Ezekiel, which is out now from Phaze. I sent it in and am waiting to find out when it might be released. I'm guessing a few months, but in the meantime, I'm working on a cover for it. I like to do my own covers when given half a chance. I have a prototype cover I've been playing with. Since most of the action takes place on a space station and the H/h are both military officers, I've tried to create something along those lines. The image below is a wallpaper version I've designed to go with what I hope will eventually be the cover. I can't post the cover quite yet, but in the meantime, you can sneak a peek at the general idea of the thing...

I also found out my story, Wings of Change, was chosen to be part of the upcoming I Dream of Dragons anthology from Samhain Publishing. I'm really excited about this story because it takes my Dragon Knights series in a new direction. This will mark the start of a new series in the Dragon Knights realm, and it means there will be a second dragon release this year. Prince of Spies released in February and Wings of Change should be out sometime this Fall. The next installment, FireDrake is scheduled for release early next year.

The most exciting thing to happen this past month was being awarded the EPPIE for Best Erotic Romance Fantasy/Paranormal by EPIC - an organization dedicated to electronic publishing and authors published electronically. It's a very prestigious award and I was honored - and shocked! - to have The Ice Dragon win for 2007. My second dragon book, Border Lair, also won Best Shapeshifter book of 2006 from both Rites of Romance Reviews and Love Romances and More Cafe. Likewise, both sites awarded me the title of Best Paranormal Author of 2006. Wow! I was floored by that one!!! And The Ice Dragon continued its winning streak by winning Best Cover of 2006 from Rites of Romance Reviews. It's been an amazing few weeks, to say the least!

I guess that's enough boasting for one post. LOL. I've been writing a few new things lately and gearing up for my first Romantic Times convention in April. If you're going to be in Houston for RT, please look me up!

Bianca D'Arc - Come over to the D'Arc side... www.biancadarc.com

posted by Bianca D'Arc at 1:57 pm 1 comments

Saturday, March 17, 2007

My First Book

Hi everyone!

This unpacking has me going crazy, I nearly forgot to post. My first release is due out soon.

Wet & Wild: Three of Hearts, Forbidden Publications, 1 July 07



Blurb:
Once the Elders sent her off to Canada to find her mate, Leslie Maple realizes life wasn't so hot out in Phoenix. With only a photo, she heads to Vancouver where she meets the two most gorgeous men she'd ever seen, identical twins Sebastian and Castor Belvedere. More intriguing is the feelings they invoke in her, the call she just can't seem to resist.

Aunt Sharon has a nasty habit of playing matchmaker, but Sebastian and Castor Belvedere are through playing along. An old pro at the matchmaking game she plays her wild card, asking them to do her a favor by accompanying her to the airport to pick up her latest mate choice. Unfortunately, for them this time Aunt Sharon may be right. But whom does this mate belong to?

I'm slowly getting back into my writing routine. A month of constant travel upset my timetable far more than I had expected. Now if my characters would start cooperating......

Elena
posted by Elena Croft at 4:36 am 1 comments

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

update on Michelle Hasker


** edited post**

I just got my new cover for The Bodyguard!


I wanted to think up something really cool to post in this spot, but I couldn't think of anything. I've been making doughnuts all morning and I finally wondered why am I doing it? It wasn't even my idea. It was someone else's and once again the buck was passed to me. Well, I'm not making any more doughnuts. LOL

I am waiting for permission to post my totally awesome cover for The Bodyguard, the story formally known as Bite Me. It comes out April 24th from Loose Id. "Elena Fortescu has been through hell and wants revenge. She doesn’t need or want to get close to anyone, but Nicolas has other plans. Her bodyguard has fallen in love with her and he’s not going to let the fact that she’s a vampire keep them apart."

I sold a series of 6 novellas about some witches and spells gone haywire, and an evil coven, and all that nice fun evil stuff :)

I have an anthology of tarot card stories that will be released September and December 2007 and March 2008. Those are already written though, leaving me time to work on submissions for Nocturne and Aphrodisia :)

And, I've learned that email is evil when you are procastinating. That refresh button that you hit and more emails magically appear. I could spend all day in my email box. hehehehe

Michelle
posted by Michelle Hasker at 3:18 pm 5 comments

Monday, March 12, 2007

Eppies and Things!

Wow, it has been a wonderful weekend! Our very own Bianca D'Arc has won an EPPIE!!!!! Ice Dragon won for Best Erotic Romance Fantasy/Paranormal! Woohoo!!! So what is an EPPIE? These are prestigious awards given by the Electronically Published Internet Connection (EPIC).

Earlier in the month they announced the awards for best cover art. My primary cover artist (until this point), Jinger Heaston, swept the competition. She took first or honorable mention in multiple categories. What awesome stuff!

On the writing front, I've started an erotic romance sci fi with Eve Vaughn. We have plans to have it finished before RT this year. :-)

Other news from our DoC...we're looking forward to having a themed party soon. A come on out and have fun day! And don't forget to stop by Brenda Williamson's Romance party on the 21st. It's guaranteed to be fun! And I've heard through the grapevine, our own Aline has some publishing news! We'll wait for her to tell you the good stuff. :-)

Since I love baking when I'm avoiding work, I thought I'd give you a snickerdoodle recipe I'd recently made:

Snickerdoodles

1 C. butter, softened (that's 20 seconds in a microwave on high if you don't want to wait hehe)
1 1/3 C. Sugar
2 Eggs
3 C. Flour
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 C. sugar mixed with 2 tsp. cinnamon (mix them in a bowl and set aside, you'll be dipping your cookies in this before putting it on the baking sheet.)

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

Preheat oven to 400 deg F.

Mix together flour, cream of tartar and baking soda. Set aside.

Beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy (It'll look like little yellow balls)

Beat in eggs one at a time, then vanilla.

Reduce mixer speed (or expect to do a LOT of cleaning) and add flour mixture until well blended. (At this point, you want to add the flour about a quarter at a time and bring the mixer up to high till smooth before adding the next quarter, JMHO)

With your hands, roll the dough into small balls, about the size of a large walnut.

Roll them in the cinnamon and sugar mixture and place 1inch apart on a large baking sheet.
NOTE: If dough is too sticky, chill it a bit before forming it into balls
Bake for about 10 minutes or until the tops of the cookies are a light golden brown, flattened some, and split on top in several lines.

Enjoy! I know my family did. LOL.

Dawn Montgomery

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posted by Dawn Montgomery at 1:08 pm 2 comments

Saturday, March 10, 2007

It's Incredible...

Ok I'll admit it. I'm a bad blogger LOL, but I try so here goes.

I have 2 realease due out soon.

The Prophecy with Forbidden Publications is tentatively due out in April. Keep an eye out for my fantastic cover.

Wet and Wild: Lifemates is due out July 1, 2007


Wet and wild: Lifemates Blurb


Benton Chaser was the black beaver of his clan. Seeing the pain and suffering his father experienced when his mother was killed. He refused to accept the laws of the clan and find his one true mate. Preferring exiles to the pain he knew was in store if he gave in and the revenge he got seducing the wives of the men who ripped his family apart.

Until he met a feisty Widow name River Maples, who gave the wild animal on her property sanctuary and greeted all men with the barrel of her shot gun. He’d tried everything he could think of to approach her and could only succeed in his were-beaver form. Yet he can’t deny the pull he feels towards her, could she be the one thing he’d been running away from for the past hundred years?

I sold my newest story Luck of the Irish to Aspen Mountain Press.

Luck of the Irish Blurb

When Dina's boss assigns her to review a local family restaurant called Luck of the Irish on St. Patrick's Day of all days, she isn't happy. Upon entering the establishment and seeing all the staff dressed as Leprechauns, she expects passable food and annoyingly cheerful service. What she got left her breathless.

Connor had always known what his destiny held in store for him. When the gods finally bestowed their gift upon him, he never expected his destiny to take place in a pair of sea blue eyes. Now, he finally understood why a four leaf clover is considered good luck.

I have 4 other subs out there right now, so here's hoping one or all of them will come through and I'll have even more good news to share.

Keep an eye on my website for I will be holding a contest very soon. It will either be a yayyyyy I sold again. Or a Wooohooo it's release day LOL.

Aline
posted by Aline de Chevigny at 2:33 am 0 comments

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

I'm still learning...

I'm in between projects.

I finished a killer of a one last week, just completed the first set of edits of Past Lies due out in April... and now I have to think about what to attack next.

It's something brand spanking new, not a languishing wip, and so I want to tackle a problem I have with beginning a new story:

How the hell do I start it?!

Most authors seem to have a system. I've yet to fully find mine. Do I start with the characters? With the plot? Or just plunge in and write my way out of it. I've tried the latter, and usually get stuck just as I get to the dreaded middle. The place of much sagging and very little idea how to make it into a oil-slicked six pack. *grin*

So this time, I'm trying names first and hanging my characters on those.
I have two, picked from my bumper book of names, otherwise known as the Character Naming Sourcebook published by Writer's Digest. A much quicker method than hunting the web. Mainly because I can't be distracted.

I've also picked out photos from a site called www.newfaces.com. It was pick two, get one free - I got a great ex-husband picture, LOL

And now I know she has an ex-husband,which I didn't know before.
So I brainstormed and I have an idea where they live, what they do for a living, what's happened to their families and why my two main characters are so-o-o very wrong for each other...

And that is about as far as I've got.

I'm off to work on it now, but I hope that really getting into the skins of my characters will help me to get to grips with the story and write it quickly.

And '...getting into the skins of my characters...'

Erm... I think that's a Knox story, not a Rees one.

So, tell me how you work it all out, because as the title says.
I'm still learning.

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posted by Kim Knox at 6:55 pm 1 comments