Articles for the Month of January 2014

Special Guest Ella Grey

Spotlighting Breathless Press author Ella Grey and her new book The Raven’s Kill. Thanks for stopping by!

Raven is a shifter with the ability to see the darkness in a person’s soul. He has never strayed off his path or let a target live before, until he meets Cassandra for the first time. She’s an innocent, so why does someone want her dead?

As soon as she laid eyes on the mysterious man, she wants him with an intensity that scares her. When he appears in her room one night with an impossible story, she doesn’t have a choice, believe him or die when someone else takes the job he’s refused.

It’s a fight against time and an attraction that scares them both, no-one knows what the future holds. Even a fledgling seer.

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Her moans had echoed all over the mansion. Raven had even heard them from his place on the roof; he’d shifted long enough to enter from the skylight before taking his human form again and headed to investigate. No lights highlighted the dark corridors but it wasn’t a problem. The dog remained silent in the kitchen, a terrible guard. The moans made him rock hard, she was the only one in the house which left one very interesting possibility.

It didn’t take long to find her room, the door slightly ajar and he pushed it open a little more.  Cassandra writhed on the bed, one hand between her legs and the other on her chest. He watched her come undone and knew he could do it better. He wanted her to fall apart with his tongue lapping at her juices, sucking and teasing her until she called out his name. He quite liked the fantasy and missed her eyes opening, resting on him. Her scream ripped through the air.

Well, what did you expect? That she’d pull you into her arms and you could finally find out what her lips taste like?

Raven darted from his place in the doorway and pressed his hand across her mouth. “I won’t hurt you.” The words left him in a rush but she fought against him. “Cassandra, I don’t intend to hurt you. Listen to me. Please listen to me.” She slowly stopped fighting but her eyes were wide, her breathing fast. “I’m going to remove my hand. Don’t scream or I’ll be forced have to put my hand over your mouth again.”

For the first time in his life, he didn’t know what he was doing. The smell of her desire, mixed with the vanilla perfume that seemed embedded into her skin, filled the air and it was distracting as hell. “Trust me?”

It was asking a lot and he knew it but she finally nodded. The impression of her lips against his hand felt like a burn, as if the brief touch left a scar against his skin.

“Please don’t hurt me.”

Her words made him angry but not at her, he didn’t want her to be scared of him. “I already said I won’t.”

Cassandra moved away from him, turning to face him. She nibbled at her bottom lip, her fingers twisted together. “What do you want?”

 

Author Bio:

Ella Grey always knew that she’d become a writer. Well, it was either that or a brain surgeon but her heart wasn’t in it. She’s constantly had voices in her head, which could have ended up being strapped in a strait jacket and being locked in a padded cell. Thankfully she picked up a pen and put it to paper.

She currently lives in the UK with her son, partner and cat. She rarely sleeps and can often be found with a cup of coffee close to one hand, with her other hand on the keyboard.

Follow her

http://www.ellagrey.wordpress.com

https://www.facebook.com/EllaGrey83

https://www.facebook.com/writerellagrey

Teaser Thursday- I Should Tell You

This novel is due out March 4 from Loose Id, and I just finished edits on it. I’m sharing this scene because it goes along with Monday’s post about mental illness. TRIGGER WARNING. 

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Again…TRIGGER WARNING.

 

 

Mitch’s hands shook as he opened the door. His heart raced. He didn’t want to go. Inside the apartment, he was safe. Outside, anything might happen.

He took a deep breath. He had no reason to be afraid of walking to the grocery store. He’d done it plenty of times, though usually Solara went with him. The neighborhood was safe, especially in daylight, and the route was straight down the street and straight back up.

But still dealing with his withdrawal, he was on edge enough to be scared of everything, whether logical or not. He’d learned early and often that he couldn’t reason himself out of anxiety and panic attacks. The only thing he could do was try to push himself beyond them.

He reached the store without incident and picked up the items on Solara’s list. Checking out was no problem either. As usual, Solara, as usual, had given him more than enough money.

He left the store and headed home, carrying three bags of groceries. They weren’t too heavy, but he had to use both hands, which bothered him. He preferred having a hand free in case he needed to defend himself. He probably wouldn’t need to defend himself here, but he didn’t want to take any chances.

And then it happened.

Ordinarily the old brown station wagon coming toward him would barely have registered on his mental radar. Ordinarily it would have driven past him, and he might have thought, Huh, that looks familiar. Or he might not have thought anything about it at all.

Ordinarily he wouldn’t have been dealing with a migraine and upset stomach and the near-desperate craving for another pill, and he wouldn’t have been only a couple of hours past thinking about his so-called parents.

The car was identical to the one his father had bought new when Mitch was ten. The one he’d forced Mitch to take a ride in the night he’d brought it home. The trip “around the block” had lasted two hours, and the car hadn’t moved during most of it, unless Mitch counted the rocking caused by his father’s movements. That had been the only time his father had assaulted him in the car, though he’d hinted a few times afterward that the back of the wagon was the perfect location. After that night, Mitch had refused to ride in the thing without his mother along. Of all the bad times with his father, this was one of the worst. He Mitch couldn’t have forgotten if he’d tried.

The car came closer, and the driver resembled his father.

Mitch dropped to his knees, hyperventilating. His heart raced, and his stomach churned. The bags fell from his hands. He barely noticed their contents spilling onto the sidewalk. He closed his eyes, willing the car to go away. To keep on moving until he was safe.

He wanted to scream, but kept it in. Even in the thick of a full-blown panic attack he knew better than to make a sound. Someone would hear him, and would think he’d gone crazy. No one other than Solara could ever find out what went on in his head.

Not So Alone

Last Monday, I was struggling with a huge, massive black blob of depression and suckitude. (That’s a word. I say so.)

The problem started with a few very innocuous comments from a few people about how and why I should self-publish, either original stuff or backlist books once I have rights reverted to me. Self-publishing is one of those things that sounds a lot easier than it is. In addition to being able to write a good story, you have to have some editing skills and/or the money to hire an editor (preferably the latter; no matter how good you are at self-editing, you will miss things); graphics skills or the money to hire a cover designer; formatting skills or money to hire a formatter. Notice the money?

And then you have to have promotions and marketing skills.

That was where it all started going downhill for me. “I don’t have the money to hire an editor or cover designer” became “I don’t earn enough from my writing because I SUCK.” And “Promoting my books is my weak point” became “I don’t know how to promo and market because I SUCK.”

I have depression and anxiety disorder. For me, the “I suck” is the depression-monster digging its claws into my brain and sucking out all the light and positives. “I suck” is also an echo of all the negative people in my childhood and much of my adulthood who TOLD me I suck.

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I posted a vent on a romance authors’ forum I belong to. Sometimes getting the darkness out of my head and into the open helps.

And I found something amazing. People responded to my vent telling me they felt the same way about their sales, their promo, their fear of self-publishing. People told me they, too, had depression or anxiety or other mental illnesses.

From posting a cry for help, or at least for someone to tell me I didn’t suck, that thread went to being almost a support group. And the best part of it is that none of us is ALONE. Fears that our writing isn’t good enough, or that we don’t know how to promote effectively, are often kept to ourselves because as authors, we’re also afraid to admit we’re afraid.

And despite statistics saying one in six adults has some form of mental illness, there is still a huge stigma. When someone says they’re depressed, they’re far more likely to hear “You have a good life, just cheer up” than to hear “I’m sorry you’re struggling, how can I help?” The impression many people–even those who themselves have mental illnesses–have is that mental illness is a weakness.

It isn’t. It’s a frigging ILLNESS, hence the name! Those of us with depression can no more help the dark times than someone with diabetes can help their blood sugar being out of whack. There are ways to *manage* the symptoms, but “just cheering up” is as hard as “just thinking my blood sugar back to normal.”

So I’m being open right now. I have depression. I have anxiety disorder. And I have post-traumatic stress disorder because of traumas I’ve experienced throughout my life. (We hear the most about PTSD in relation to returning soldiers, but it is NOT exclusively a combat disorder. Or, as my husband–a veteran–put it, “Some people with PTSD lived through war zones in their own homes.”)

If you have a mental illness, please don’t be afraid to reach out. Don’t be ashamed, because you are not weak. Hell, if you’re alive, you’re strong, end of story. You deserve to have as healthy a life as you can, and you deserve support and acceptance.

You are not alone.

Special Guest Rebekah Lewis

Please welcome Breathless Press author Rebekah Lewis here to share her thoughts on mythology. Thanks for stopping by!

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Mythology in Writing

Mythology provides a vast foundation of material. It is diverse. The best part is that there is no definitive version of the ancient legends as it predates the written word. It varies from source to source, which can be both wonderful and horrible when researching a topic. Having variations is a tremendous help when basing a story on myth because, let’s face it, a lot of authors use myth for their books, and if they all used the exact same versions, well, it would become a bit repetitive. Which is why it is also essential to make the mythology your own while staying true to the root of the legends.

Wicked Satyr Nights is about satyrs and nymphs, but also the Greek gods. Farther down the line in the series, more creatures will become more involved, so it means I am doing a lot of reading up on mythology, even to reflect back on the tales I know rather well. For example Pan, the hero, has so many conflicting stories that it became fun to build a background for him from pieces of the information available. Hermes wasn’t always considered his father, and Pan’s mother varied from goddesses, to nymphs, to humans. Not to mention, Pan wasn’t always a satyr himself in some of the legends.

Hermes is a widely recognized mythological figure so I decided to stick to the version where he’s Pan’s father, but his mother…I only saw mention of her in one source, and she wasn’t a recognizable name. I went with it since the lack of information on her gave me more room to build a background without having to use other stories here or there to mold her into the character she became in the Hermes novella I am currently working on.

The rest of Pan’s history came from bits and pieces of popular myths such as the tale of Pan and the nymph Syrinx. The best part about using mythology in fiction is being able to change it and alter it to your own plot. In the original version, Syrinx found Pan so hideous that she ran from him, disguising herself as water reeds. Pan searched among them, hoping to catch her but the reeds were many. When his breath brushed over the reeds, he was enchanted by the musical sound and cut the batch to fasten them into what is now known as panpipes or a panflute, but has the formal name of a “syrinx.” I changed this myth significantly in my retelling, but the basis of the story is still beneath the surface and it is still true to the source in that Pan does chase Syrinx down upon first seeing her, and in the end he creates the panpipes from the reeds she becomes, naming them after her.

Overall, fiction gives an author so much more room to be creative with something like an ancient myth. Just like a film adapting a screenplay or a novel, things have to shift to fit the new format of what you are creating with it. But if you aren’t true to the source in some way, shape, or form, then you chance readers that are very familiar with these stories being very opposed to what you have done with it.

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WICKED SATYR NIGHTS

Some creatures want to be found.

When Dr. Katerina Silverton travels into the Pine Barrens to make a documentary on the Jersey Devil, she doesn’t believe she will uncover any supernatural evidence. In fact, she only takes the job because it promises funding for future projects. So it is quite a shock to Kat when she finds herself face-to-face with the legendary beast she was sent into the forest to capture on film.

In ancient Greece, the god Pan made a terrible mistake which resulted in the creation of the Satyroi: a race of immortal satyrs. Centuries later, he lives secluded in the Pine Barrens, frightening mortals by taking the guise of an abhorrent local monster. When a beautiful woman shows up in his forest looking for proof of his existence, Pan can’t resist revealing himself to her.

Outside forces may be manipulating them both, pushing them together for nefarious reasons. Kat must decide if she could learn to love a satyr or if his appearance is more than she can handle. Can she resist Pan’s wicked nature, or will she give into the temptations beyond her wildest fantasies?

Get the book from Breathless Press.

Teaser Thursday- Thunder

This is from my erotica short story, available in the Coming Together: Through the Storm anthology. WARNING: Very explicit language.

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one of her best shirts, and she didn’t want to ruin it even in the heat of the moment.

Before she could unfasten her black lace bra, Jason reached around her and with one hand undid the clasp. He slid the bra straps down Celeste’s arms and tossed the bra aside.

Her nipples stiffened again and her pussy grew wet. The hunger with which he gazed at her would have scared her if she hadn’t felt exactly the same way.

“Beautiful,” he murmured.

He didn’t touch her, but his gaze was almost tangible on her skin. She tingled in anticipation of those hands and his tongue on her bare body, barely managing to keep herself from begging him to give her what she needed.

She hadn’t felt this excited and turned on in far too long. She owed Gina a thank you for taking her to the bar that night. She just hoped Gina wasn’t pissed at her for leaving with Jason.

But that was something to worry about later. Right now, she was nude in front of a total stranger, and rather than feeling awkward or nervous, she was desperate to be fucked.

Thunder growled and Jason echoed it. Celeste wasn’t sure whether he knew he’d made the noise, and it both worried and thrilled her.

He quickly stripped off his jeans and tight black T-shirt and dropped them on the floor. His chest was muscled and well-defined. No hair at all was visible on his torso or around his cock and balls.

His cock was fully hard against his abdomen, and Celeste’s mouth watered as she looked at his glistening cock head.

“Do what you want,” he said. “You’ve told me all of it. What should we do first?”

“How long do we have?” She hadn’t intended to ask the question, but it was something they hadn’t established. For all she knew, he had family to get home to. He had told her nothing about himself other than his name.

“As long as you want.” He rested his hands on her shoulders and smiled. “I can stay an hour or the night. Whatever you want from me. I will leave when you tell me to, but not until then.”

Celeste nodded and before she could ask another needless question, she cupped the back of his head and pulled him down to her for another searing kiss.

This time she pushed her tongue between his lips, and he moaned against her mouth and gripped one of her breasts so tightly it hurt. She didn’t care. His touch was exactly what she needed. He thumbed her nipple as he had before, and she gasped as a jolt shot through her from that touch straight to her core.

Straight to her wet, aching cunt.

She moved sideways toward the bed and he followed. A flash of lightning lit the room again, with another one and a loud crash on its heels. They fell together onto the bed, on their sides with their bodies together.

Special Guest Z.A. Maxfield

There are so many good things to say about author Z.A. Maxfield that it would take an entire blog post! My Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat series was born on Z.A.’s Yahoo loop, and she is one of the most giving and supportive authors I’ve met. And I’ve had the pleasure of meeting her in person at GayRomLit 2012. She’s here today to share the top three things she’s learned in her career, and her new release My Heartache Cowboy. Thanks for stopping by!

The Top Three Things I’ve Learned About Myself From Writing:

Writing is a GREAT gig! It’s not grueling physically, I do most of my work in my jammies with my faithful dog by my side, and I’m home to spend time with my family when they’re around. Plus I get to stretch myself creatively every day.

I love the camaraderie when friends get together on the Internet and within groups like RWA to share ideas and bond. I like to think I’m godmother to Karenna’s Vegan Werewolves, for example, because we were all joking around on my Yahoo Group one day and MLR Press’s Executive Editor Kris Jacen threw out a challenge idea about whipped cream… After that, one thing led to another and Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat was born right there before all our eyes. Creative people bouncing ideas, challenging one another to do just a little bit more is the definition of synergy: the synthesis of a whole greater than the sum of its parts.

I’ve learned some surprising things about myself in the process of becoming a writer, some obvious, and some surprising. These are my top three:

I’m not actually the dilettante I thought I was: I have been a lifelong member of the “Squirrel!” club. (Did something shiny just go by? Ooooh.)

I can love baking or speed walking or scrapbooking and work hard at it, only to find something new a minute later. I’ve had a lot of different jobs and career ideas but mostly they don’t stick because I’m always looking around to see what’s next.

Writing is never boring. There’s always something new to do or learn. I don’t dabble, either. I dig in. I research something enough to get quite good at it, and then… well there’s naturally going to be something new I want to look into next. When I’m writing, I no longer think of myself as a someone who doesn’t stick to things, I think of someone who is supposed to be discovering new things. Eureka!

I can finish things: I have an enormous problem letting things go because I always feel like I can make them better. At some point, however, I have to give myself permission to stop writing a book. I have to submit it, edit it, publish it, and let it go… I have learned to do that, but it’s not easy. I’ve finished more than twenty-five titles to date.

I work hard: This was surprising to me, because I generally take the path of least resistance. I’m not a great housekeeper as you’ve probably heard me say at some point. I don’t spend a lot of time at the gym unless I’m picking up my friend Bev, who is a Pilates trainer by trade, to go out for lunch. You’ve heard of Tiger Parenting? I practice Sloth Parenting — that’s where you spend weekends curled up on the couch with your kids binge-watching Doctor Who.

But guess what? When I write, I’m an effing honey badger. I have staying power! I can deal with adversity! I can overcome poor moods and poor self-esteem because I have learned how to start on something that takes time and patience and work through it, one step at a time! My books get finished and my agent and editors seem happy most of the time. Plus, I can finish an exhausting book and start the process all over again the next day.

Whatever you think you know about yourself, the creative process can turn it on its ear! I urge everyone to explore that hidden part of your psyche and find out what’s really hiding out inside you. You may be as surprised by what you find as I was!

Thanks so much, Karenna, for letting me stop by and hang out with you today. I could not be prouder of my miniscule role in the birth of your werewolf stories.

Write like the wind, honey! (Thanks, ZAM. You too! You guys, did I not say this woman is AWESOME??)

My Heartache Cowboy
(Cowboy Series, Bk #2)
By Z.A. Maxfield
Blurb:

Can love conquer all?

Jimmy Rafferty and Eddie Molina go way back at the J-Bar ranch. They’ve worked together, bunked together, camped out, and drank together. So how has Jimmy failed to notice that Eddie is gay? Eddie has not failed to notice that his friend has a serious drinking problem, and he’s determined to help Jimmy kick the booze cold turkey.

Taking him up to a snowbound cabin to detox, Eddie is confronted with Jimmy’s fierce denial. But the pains of withdrawal are nothing for Jimmy compared with the heartache of denying his true feelings and his deep longing…for the one man who cares for him more than anyone else on earth.

Available for purchase at

 

Excerpt

When I woke, I was alone and the truck wasn’t moving.

Who the hell did Eddie think he was, leaving me asleep by myself in a truck outside in the freezing cold? My pa and my older brother, Jonas, used to do that. We’d be on the road, and when I fell asleep, they’d leave me in the parking lot of some dive bar or motel—just leave me asleep outside in the dark. I’d wake up with no clue where I was, no idea if they were coming back or if I should go in and try to find them.

My first useful thought was to look for the keys, because I hadn’t forgotten what Eddie said. I hadn’t forgotten the plans him and boss Malloy made for me behind my back. It would serve them right if I up and hightailed it back to the J-Bar with Eddie’s truck and no Eddie.

No keys.

Not like that was going to stop me. Where the hell did Eddie get the idea I’d go quietly? I slid over and tore the wiring out from under the dash. Found what I needed without hardly even looking.

I hated waking up alone like that. Unwanted. Abandoned.

One twist. Two. Touch the wires together and the engine should . . .

Fuck.

Nothing.

What the hell? I checked I got the proper color-coated strands and tried again. I was frowning down at the mess of tangled wire when someone tapped on the window behind me.

I glanced up and saw Eddie frowning down, no doubt pissed at what I’d done to his truck. Serves you right for leaving me like that, you prick.

“You need a working engine for that,” he told me as he opened the door. “One that has a battery.”

“Fuck you.” I spilled out of the car ready for a fistfight.

“What?” Eddie jumped back.

“Why did you have to leave me like that? What did I ever do to you?”

Eddie shook his head at me. “I don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. You were sound asleep and I thought maybe you needed it.”

I took a swing at him. “I hate waking up alone in a car like that.”

Ed plucked my fist from the air and peered at me like he was trying to see through my skin. “I didn’t know.”

“I hate that. Left behind in the car like a damn dog. Like a fucking duffel bag. You can’t be bothered to even wake me up and take me in out of the fucking snow.”

Now Eddie frowned like he was thinking about it. Now, after the fact. “I’m sorry, Jimmy. I didn’t think how you’d feel waking up alone like that. I won’t do it again.”

“Would have served you right if I took your truck and left you up here to walk back to civilization, wherever the hell that is. Would have served you right if I’d died out here.”

“All right, all right. Simmer down now.”

I glared at him. “Fuck you.”

“It’s pretty civilized inside. How about you come in with me.”

“How about you suck my fucking—”

“That’s enough.” He turned and headed toward the cabin’s welcoming front door. “I almost didn’t bother to disable the damn thing, but I thought on the off chance you knew what you were doing and could—”

“Which I did,” I pointed out.

“Come inside.” He jerked his chin toward the cabin like I was a dog and I was supposed to just follow along and yip around at his heels.

I debated making a run at him, but frankly, Eddie was a tough buzzard. He wasn’t too much older than me, just forty-two compared to my thirty-eight. But I was a lover, not a fighter, or at least that’s how I thought of myself. Back there on the road, Eddie had proved he wasn’t above using violence to get his way in this, so I went along.

You’re going to have to sleep sometime.

Eddie led me into a rustic-looking cabin that seemed awful nice for the middle of nowhere. There was a place for us to hang our hats just inside the door, over a table with a passel of pictures on it. There were old time black-and-whites of families and framed pictures of a good-looking man, a pretty woman, and some kids. There were some of the kids alone, and holy cow, there were probably a dozen pictures of Ed. He looked so young in a couple of them, they must have been from before we met.

One of Ed and the unknown man caught my eye. Something about the difference in height, the casual way they leaned together, the way they looked at each other, made me think this was Ed’s friend from the road, Don. Even though they’d both aged some since it was taken, I was almost sure of it.

No knobby hands, no weathered angel, this Don was good looking, without a doubt. He was lanky and chiseled. He had an intelligent face and a smile that drew the eye. He seemed sure of himself and charming. Whatever I’d seen in the darkness outside the car had to be a trick of the light.

Ed looked so young and earnest next to him it took my breath away. Brawny and tan, he wore a yoked Western shirt with the sleeves rolled up past well-muscled forearms and he eyed Don like he would follow him anywhere.

And that Don, he looked like he could appreciate a guy like Ed, as well.

Hadn’t I seen firsthand how much he did appreciate him?

About the Author

Z. A. Maxfield started writing in 2007 on a dare from her children and never looked back. Pathologically disorganized, and perennially optimistic, she writes as much as she can, reads as much as she dares, and enjoys her time with family and friends. Three things reverberate throughout all her stories: Unconditional love, redemption, and the belief that miracles happen when we least expect them.If anyone asks her how a wife and mother of four can find time for a writing career, she’ll answer, “It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you give up housework.”

You can find ZA Maxfield at
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New Anthology Release!

Okay, it actually released back on January 11, but I didn’t have a chance to blog about it until now, because I’m disorganized like that…

Coming Together: Through the Storm is the latest of a long line of Coming Together anthologies. Each anthology benefits a specific charity organization, and some really excellent authors have contributed their talents over the years.

This is my first time contributing to one, and I’m thrilled to be part of it. Coming Together: Through the Storm is an anthology of weather-related erotica, and all sales benefit Mercy Corps, which provides relief efforts for hurricanes and typhoons.

I saw the call for submissions back in November, just in time to write a story during my short story self-challenge that month, and my brain took “weather-related erotica” to a completely different place. In my story, “Thunder,” the heroine brings home a guy for a one-night stand, and a thunderstorm happens outside while they fuck.

A thunderstorm caused by the guy, who has the psychic power to control weather.

I wrote this before I’d decided to focus on contemporary romance under the Karenna Colcroft name; if I’d thought of it, I would have asked that the story be published under my new Kara Costegan pen name. But since I didn’t think that one through, it’s a Karenna Colcroft story, and I’ll share an excerpt from it on Thursday.

You can find Coming Together: Through the Storm on All Romance Ebooks, and you can find out more about this and other Coming Together anthologies on the Coming Together website.

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Special Guest Beth Carter

Please welcome Siren author Beth Carter, here to share with us. Thanks for stopping by!

  1. When and why did you start writing romance?

I was about 11 years old when I began reading my mother’s Harlequin Presents and I was hooked.  I love romance and erotica is just a way of writing romance with no blinders on. It feeds on fantasy and imagination, and I love transporting myself from my own hum-drum life into one of pure sensation. I love being turned on, and so when I write I want my readers to get turned on.

 

  1. Have you ever based a character on someone you know? If so, did you tell them? If not, is there someone in your life you’d like to base a character on?

Yes.  I use my best friend, Lark, quite often in my books.  She’s always the plucky side kick.  It’s why I dedicate a lot of books to her. And if someone pisses me off then they usually end up as bad guys in my novels.  I’ve been stuck using my ex-boss’s name for a while.  It’s gotten so bad people see his name and tell me “Oh, he’s the bad guy, right?”

 

  1. Tell us about your latest book.

Lights, Camera, Love Story is the third in the Love Story series.  It features Jake, who was introduced in the second book, Once Upon a Love Story.  Jake is the latest Hollywood heart throb and he’s a player, but he’s met his match in Norah.  This was supposed to be the last in the series, but then Jake’s friend is screaming at me to write his story so…we’ll see.

 

  1. What’s the most interesting place you’ve ever traveled to?

I have been fortunate enough to have traveled a lot.  I’ve driven across the States several times, been to Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Finland, and almost every country in Europe.  In 2017 my family and I are going to Japan to climbMt.Fuji.  So this question is slightly hard to answer.   The most interesting place…maybe Paris.  I lived there for four months and have traveled there several times.  From the catacombs of bones to the bell tower in the Notre Dame, it’s a train ride to Monet’s house in Giverny and Versailles.  And the subway is the easiest to navigate, hands down.

 

  1. What books do you have available now (title and publisher)?

I have twenty-one titles available and a little something for everyone.  Some of my books make references to each other.  For instance, my two historicals The Scarlet Dove and The Song Bird feature the ancestors to my characters in the McKnight, Perth & Daire series.  They are all available on Amazon.com or at the publishers websites: Siren Bookstrand and LooseId.  Or visit my website: www.bethdcarter.com

 

  1. What books do you have coming soon?

After Lights, Camera, Love Story, I’m taking a break to write more.  I had eight books published in 2013 so I was very busy and need to recharge.  I’m privileged to be part of a Dream Anthology so watch my website for updates later on in 2014 for that.  I’m also working on a Motorcycle Club trilogy.

 

  1. What’s your favorite thing to drink while you’re writing?

Earl Grey Tea.  I drink lots and lots of it while writing.  I have a K-cup machine and make three cups so I don’t have to pause to make more.

 

  1. If you were from another planet, which one would you want to be from and why?

Someplace out of our Galaxy.  Lots of possibilities.  Having the Stargate would be cool because then you could explore the universe to your heart’s content. (Yes, I’m a huge sci-fi geek)

 

  1. What genre are most of your stories? Why did you choose that genre?

I write either MF or MFM stories, although I have written MM and MMF books as well.  I prefer MFM because I like figuring out the dynamics of having two Alpha men love one woman.  When I was first published, I wrote a plethora of genres because I was still figuring out my “voice”, per se.  I have historical, contemporary, futuristic, sci-fi, time travel, rock-n-roll…which is why I say I have something for everyone.  My one given is that everything is erotica romance, so there’s always a HEA.

 

  1. Which author have you always wanted to meet and why?

I can only pick one?  I would say, hands down, Lisa Kleypas.  She’s such an amazing writer.  I would love to pick her brain on how she plots her stories and outlines each chapter.  I think I could learn a lot from her.

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Lights, Camera, Love Story

Blurb:

Jake Coolidge is Hollywood’s hot new star.  Growing up in Los Angeles among the film sets his father worked on, Jake knows fame is fickle so he lives life to the fullest.  He never has to search far for a pretty face with an amazing body to fill his bed, and he never, ever, promises fidelity.

Norah Scaritt has lived her whole life in a fantasy world.  Knowing she would never be the girl to wear a bikini or short shorts, she’s come to accept that she has curves even though she secretly wishes she was one of the slim, beautiful models that decorates Jake’s arm.

She’s written a movie script that she knows Jake will be perfect for, but she’s ill prepared for the magnetic attraction she feels for him.  As she tries to form a professional bond with him, his hot and cold attitude breaks her heart one too many times.  Can Jake save a love that he denied before he’s lost the only person that ever really mattered?

Synopsis:

Jake Coolidge is Hollywood’s newest heart throb but he knows how fame can be fickle.  His friend Jill gives him a script that was written by her cousin, Norah Scaritt, and he really likes it.  So he calls her to set up a lunch date.

When Norah takes the call, she’s excited. She drives to Malibu to meet with him but Jake has brought his latest conquest.  There is an instant attraction between Norah and Jake and he invites her to a play he’s going to see that afternoon.  Once at the theater, they sit alone and their attraction only grows deeper.

After the play they grab coffee and desert and continue to talk.  By the end of the night, she is more than half way in love with him.

Jake doesn’t believe that love lasts.  His parents fought all the time, and when he was eighteen, his father got a fifteen year old girl pregnant, ruining his directing career.  The fall out poisoned Jake’s perspective.  So he plays hot and cold with Norah because he wants her but he doesn’t want to love her.

When his friend states he’s going to make a play for her, this upsets Jake and Jake takes her to Alaska where he’s best man at his friend’s (Caleb from Once Upon a love Story) wedding.  Once there, he decides he can safe guard his heart long enough to have a relationship with Norah.

Once back in LA, however, he realizes that he really cares for her and it scares him.  He runs.  But he gets a call that Norah was on a bus that crashed, no survivors, and Jake realizes just how much he loved her.

Norah’s purse was stolen and the thief jumped on a bus.  While she’s in the police station, she sees Jake crying on TV and has a cop take her to him.  They are reunited and Jake tells her he loves her.

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ABOUT BETH:
I like writing about the very ordinary girl thrust into extraordinary circumstances, so my heroines will probably never be lawyers, doctors or corporate highrollers.  I try to write characters who aren’t cookie cutters and push myself to write complicated situations that I have no idea how to resolve, forcing me to think outside the box.  I love writing characters who are real, complex and full of flaws, heroes and heroines who find redemption through love.

I’ve been pretty fortunate in life to experience some amazing things.  I’ve lived in France, traveled throughout Europe, Australia and New Zealand.  I am a mom to an amazing little boy.  I live in Los Angeles, surrounded by friends and family.  I hate washing dishes but I love cooking. I hate washing clothes but I love wearing them. Writing my bio is difficult because I never know what to say so I hope you like this one.  My favorite color is red but I look best in black (it’s slimming).  I hate people who don’t pick up their dog’s crap in public places, people who don’t use turn signals, and I really hate people who are rude and condescending. I especially hate discrimination in all and every form.  And although I love holding a book in my hand, I absolutely adore my ereader, whom I’ve named Ruby.  I love to hear from readers so I’ve made it really easy to find me on Twitter: @BethDCarter  or Facebook: 
https://www.facebook.com/bethdcarterauthor

www.bethdcarter.com

http://bethdcarter.blogspot.com/

Amazon author page:

http://www.amazon.com/BethD.Carter/e/B00EOTD1T0/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1385417145&sr=8-1

Teaser Thursday- Colder Weather

VERY unedited excerpt from a hetero contemporary romance I abandoned years ago. 

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After a while, the white lines on the highway tended to blur together. That was always Craig’s signal that it was nearly time to pull off the road for his mandatory eight-hour break. He’d been driving for ten hours since his last stop, and that meant he didn’t have much choice about stopping again.

But he was only forty miles from home, and it seemed stupid to stop when he was so close. Not that he had anyone waiting for him when he came off the road. All he had was a little one-bedroom apartment over an old woman’s garage. His landlady never cared if he was there or not, as long as the rent was paid on time. Craig didn’t spend much time there anyway. It was just a place for him to sleep on weekends. He only took weekends off because his boss made him. The road was what mattered to him.

Sometimes not having anyone waiting for him at home depressed him. But it hadn’t seemed worth it to look for anyone, not since he’d lost his wife five years earlier. She’d only been twenty-five, four years younger than he was, and they’d been together since she was sixteen. He didn’t think he’d ever love anyone else as much as he had Meg. At least being on the road gave him time to think about her. There were times he even imagined she was sitting in the passenger seat, just like she’d said she wanted to do when he’d first brought up learning to drive big rigs.

Ahead of him, a grey SUV swerved as if about to change lanes, then swerved the other way. “Great,” Craig muttered. “Drunk driver at five in the afternoon. Some people just can’t wait to get the party started.”

The other vehicle swerved a few more times and nearly sideswiped a small black hatchback traveling in the far right lane. The car veered to the right to avoid the SUV and, as Craig watched from the cab of his rig, skidded through the breakdown lane and into the ditch alongside the road. The SUV kept going as if the driver hadn’t noticed anything.

Craig steered into the breakdown lane and brought his rig to a stop. The driver of the car probably wasn’t hurt, but he wanted to make sure. He shifted into parking gear and picked up his CB mic. “Break for any state trooper near northbound mile marker seventy-eight. Gray SUV just ran a car off the road. Checking now to find out if the driver’s all right.”

“State police here,” a male voice came back. “Who are you?”

“I’m in a Jacksonian rig,” Craig replied. “Getting out now to check on the driver. I didn’t catch a license plate on that SUV, but they’ve been driving erratically for a couple miles now.”

“We’ll take care of it. If the driver you’re checking on is injured, don’t move him.”

“Wasn’t planning on it. Out.” Craig hooked the mic back to the radio. The trooper must have thought he was an idiot. Of course he knew enough not to move an injured person until help arrived.

He climbed down from the truck cab and hurried into the ditch. The car was tilted nearly halfway onto its side. The driver was stirring, probably trying to get out. They wouldn’t have much luck, given how the car had ended up. Gravity would keep the driver’s side door closed, and the passenger side door was against the ground.

He went closer and saw that the driver was a woman. Younger than him, and looking pretty terrified. Craig carefully made his way up to the car. A slight smell of gas filled the air, as if the car had sprung a leak somewhere along the line.

The driver rolled down the window. “Can you help me get out?”

Her voice reminded Craig of Meg. He steeled himself against the pain the memory was sure to bring and forced a smile. “I can try,” he said. “Are you hurt?”

She shook her head. “I don’t think so. Had the wind knocked out of me when I landed, but I think I’m okay now. I just can’t get the door open, and I smell gas. You don’t think it’s going to catch fire, do you?”

“I think you’re going to be fine.” He took hold of the door handle and pulled. The door resisted opening. He pulled harder, and the door opened. “I’ll hold it. You get out.”

The driver scrambled out of the car, and Craig let the door slam shut. The woman looked at him with teary green eyes. Her red hair was tied back in a wavy ponytail, and the scrubs she wore were slightly wrinkled. “Thank you,” she said.

When Life Happens

I was talking with a writing friend at the end of last week. She’s trying a new schedule this year to keep herself organized and focused with her writing, something that isn’t easy as she’s raising kids.

She and I agreed that it’s very easy to feel guilty if you aren’t able to work on your writing on a given day. Especially if you’ve gone to the trouble of setting a schedule so you can keep track of what you’re “supposed to do” and when. Personally, if something comes up unexpectedly that interferes with my schedule and my work, I get pretty darn frustrated. And I get down on myself sometimes for not being able to accomplish the work I’d hoped to.

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It’s important to remember that life happens. If we work a wage-paying job, sometimes we have to take sick days or time off to go to a child’s appointment. Sometimes the car won’t start and we can’t get to work at all. Sometimes there’s bad weather.

In our writing careers, things are going to come up. We aren’t just plot-bots spewing out words in fifty seconds or less. We’re humans. We might have wage-paying jobs, or family, or get sick. We need to give ourselves time and understanding when things impact our writing. The world will not end if we don’t finish that novel when we’d intended. Even if it’s already been pitched to a publisher or agent and has a deadline attached, we can contact the other party for more time. Chances are, they’re human too and will understand.

So be gentle with yourself if something keeps you from writing or completing other tasks. It’s okay. Life happens.