What would the pack think of this latest acquisition?
Saturday, May 31, 2008
What would the pack think of this latest acquisition?
Friday, May 30, 2008
...and the good guy isn't cooperating either.
by Shiloh Walker
So you've got a book in your head.
Seems to be a pretty good one. A little different, interesting characters...all in all, it seems like a book you might like to read if you found it in a bookstore.
So you start writing it down.
You meet the heroine.
You meet the hero.
You meet the bad guy.
You meet the important secondaries, think you've got a handle on where the plot is going.
Then the bad guy decides to dig in his heels.
He doesn't want to be the bad guy.
Never mind the fact that it's going to throw your plot to hell. Never mind the fact that you already know how you're going to kill him. Never mind the fact that you don't plan to write a story for him. Because he has other plans. He wants to start infringing on the good guy's territory (the heroine, naturally) and when he can't have the heroine, you get a look inside his heart and see how much he needs his own heroine.
Then the good guy starts murmuring sympathetically. Even though it's not in the book, he's telling you all these things that you don't want to hear, because you don't want to write a book for the bad guy that was supposed to the villain and he wouldn't let you.
Come on, people! Is this my book or not?
Sigh. Since it's happened twice this year, I guess I know the answer to that.
Of course it's not my book.
And if you wanna figure out which bad guy decided he wasn't going to be a bad guy...you'll have the read the book and find out. ;)
Through the Veil
Found wandering in a field as a child, Lee Ross was given a name by the state and placed in a foster home-without anyone realizing she wasn't entirely human. All her life, she's tried to dismiss the odd dreams that have plagued her, dreams of monsters creeping through the night and a man, fighting demons by her side. But the bruises she wakes up with are all too real to ignore
Then the man from dreams appears in the flesh. His name is Kalen and he insists that her destiny lies in his world, the world of her dreams. To save their people, he must convince Lee to give everything she knows, follow her heart and cross into the Under Realm, even though once she does, she'll never be able to return.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
I thought this was hysterical - for fans of Indiana Jones and those disappointed by the latest installment in his adventures, maybe this explains it. LOL
And this gentleman has written a FanFic of Indiana Jones - perhaps you'll enjoy it more than the movie - maybe it will just make you want to see the movie more? I haven't read it, but he commented on a review of the latest IJ that he enjoyed the movie for what it was, but if someone wanted a better story - they could write it - which is what he'd done. Loved his can-do attitude, even if the world of FanFic isn't a place I visit often. :)
And one final vid that is too adorable for words, not to mention funny!
Maybe you have to have geek tendencies like me, but I found both videos particularly entertaining. I was just in the mood to smile today. I hope you are too!
And so we have something to chat about - what makes *you* smile?
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Something about what makes us writers makes us observers. Or maybe it’s the other way around and we’re watchers first and writers second. I’m not sure which came first, but at a recent academic conference, a couple of writer friends and I took part in a panel discussion, along with an editor friend and another friend who’s a professor of literature. We were all there for the weekend and I couldn’t help but notice how frequently it was the non-writers who were carrying the conversation, while the compulsively watchful writers in the group were usually sitting back making mental notes.
It’s not anything we try to do. In fact, I think that for the most part we can’t help it, any more than we can stop using bits and pieces of our friends, families and acquaintances in our characters. We cannibalize mercilessly, taking an old friend’s mannerism, a co-worker’s laugh, the way a brother-in-law can never quite seem to get it right when it comes to ordering pizza.
No one is safe, nothing is exempt. Grandma is no more off the hook for her misuse of the word “dildo” at Christmas dinner than is the poor misguided husband who thinks a garden rake and a post-holer make dandy Valentine’s Day gifts. For the sake of familial harmony, as well as a dislike of lawsuits, most of us have the good grace to at least change the names. (Unless, of course, the author is divorced—in which case I always take an especially close look at the names of any barnyard animals that may happen to show up in the story.)
For the most part, though, I think our families know and accept that pretty much anything they say or do for the rest of their lives is fair game for inclusion in a book. Our friends don’t mind when we borrow their name for our handsome hero or even the loathsome villain. They’re a little flattered when we use the funky old house from their college days as the setting for a story. They’re forgiving when we shamelessly reproduce, scene for scene, that Thanksgiving they got trashed on Jagermeister and told us what they really thought of our ex-boyfriend, unaware that we’d gotten back together with him the night before.
There’s an extra little spin, though, for those of us who write gay romance. “How do you do your research?” is always one of the first questions people ask when they hear what I write and I always tell them that ninety-percent of it is exactly the same as more traditional romance. It’s the same three-act drama, heroic journey, character-driven type of story that my favorite writers have been writing and I’ve been reading since my mother began dropping me off at the library on summer afternoons all those years ago.
But, oh, that other ten-percent.
I’ve always thought that gay men and straight women were natural allies and it seems especially true to me when it comes to sex. “What are they thinking?” is the question we always ask ourselves and I’ve gotten some of the most honest, unfiltered responses I’ve ever heard from my gay friends. The Venn diagram of our lives overlaps in all the right areas for them to be able to shed light on things I so desperately want to know: What does it feel like? Where does he go in his head when he gets that look in his eyes? Why can’t he pick just one channel and watch it?
I wander places like the EroticaCon when it comes to Los Angeles every year, checking out the displays of toys and accessories. I stop in at Mr. S Leather whenever I’m in town and pester the hot sales boys with impertinent questions. At the West Hollywood Book Fair I drift repeatedly over to the Tom of Finland booth, breathing in the character and ambiance of another place and time.
So if you see me at the book fair or con and I’m flipping through the racks of skin mags and gay porn, just remember, I’m not doing it because I’m a perv -- it’s all in the name of research.
P. S. I will draw a name from the comments on this blog to win a download of "Crossing the Line" - so don't be shy.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Can a free-spirited woman teach an uptight professor what he needs to know about love and faith—outside the classroom?
Something was missing.
There were no flowers in the beds.
Meagan went in search of Adam. She tracked him and the children down in the barn. He was busy talking to the farm manager and Jason and Mandy were busy talking to the cow. Meagan laughed.
Adam stiffened and whipped his head around. Catching his eye, she motioned that she'd like to talk to him. He nodded and turned back to the farm manager. After another brief spate of conversation, Adam dismissed the other man. Jason and Mandy abandoned the cow.
"Miss Meagan, Daddy said you're staying!" Mandy hugged her fiercely.
Hugging her back, Meagan agreed. "Yep. I'm staying. I'm going to teach you and take care of you and maybe even squeeze a little fun in there somewhere."
Adam raised his brows. "Are you sure there will be time for fun with my exacting schedule?"
"I'm creative. I'll manage." She winked at him. Her heart constricted when he winked back. She almost forgot what she wanted.
"I looked over the curriculum and I'll need some things for class tomorrow."
"Sure. Whatever you need."
"Great. Where's the closest nursery?"
Adam's eyes widened. "What exactly is it that you need?"
She shifted her glance to Jason. He was petting the cow. "Oh, just a few seedlings. They're for science."
"I'll take you. I have to drop the children off for a birthday party and then we can go."
"Why don't you just give me directions? I don't want to impose on your time." And she wasn't sure she wanted Adam along to question her purchases either.
"It wouldn't be an imposition at all. Besides, I don't want to risk you getting lost and ending up as someone else's nanny."
Meagan felt her face heating. "I'm sure I can find my way, provided you give better directions than Jake."
"I can't guarantee it, so I'll just have to take you. Can you be ready in fifteen minutes?"
Defeated, Meagan nodded.
The nursery exceeded Meagan's expectations. Grower's tables full of seedlings stretched at least fifty feet to the back wall. Above them hung baskets of blooming fuchsias in purple, white and magenta. One entire wall was covered with rose bushes in two-gallon buckets. Meagan was drawn to their heady fragrance. Putting her hand out, she caressed one velvet crimson petal.
"Yes. They are." Adam's voice so close to her ear, he startled her. She looked up and was arrested by the way he intently gazed at the roses. "I wanted to plant roses along the front of the house. They were my mother's favorite flower."
"Why don't you?"
Adam cleared his throat and said something she couldn't quite hear.
"What did you say?"
"I said, I don't know how."
"But, Adam, you're a farmer. It shouldn't be that much of a stretch to grow roses."
"I'm not a farmer. I'm a math professor."
"The semantics are not important. You live on a working farm, you're a farmer."
"I don’t know anything about farming. That's why I hired Eduardo."
"I don't understand. Why did you buy a farm when you know nothing about farming?"
"For Mandy and Jason." He turned away, but not before she saw the look of pain in his eyes. "I wanted them to have an environment they could explore and experience while growing up. They need room to run and play without their next door neighbor hearing every time they flush the toilet."
Adam's voice had take on a bitter edge.
"Did you grow up in an apartment?"
He grimaced. "You could say that."
She remained silent, waiting for him to go on.
"I grew up in a series of dingy, run-down buildings. Half the time our hot water didn't work, or the heat, you get my drift."
Meagan ached for the child Adam had been. "It must have been tough, but you've given Jason and Mandy a wonderful environment to grow up in."
"There's no reason you can't have the roses now. I'll teach you all you need to know. I'll even help you plant them."
"You don't have to do that, Meagan. Gardening is not in your job description."
"I'll consider it one of my perks."
Adam turned his intense gaze to her. "It's my turn to ask a question."
"How did you take care of your garden working sixty hours a week?"
Meagan turned back to the roses, bending down to sniff a large yellow blossom. "The garden went with the house and the house went to Brian."
"You can't be serious. What judge in his right mind would award Brian the house when he was caught in adultery?" Adam's voice was harsh with anger.
"The judge didn't award him the house. I gave it to him. He needed the room for his new family." Would Adam understand, or would he question her sanity like her family had?
Meagan felt the gentle pressure of Adam's hand on her shoulder, pulling her back around to face him. He placed his finger under her chin and lifted until her eyes met his. Their warm brown depths were void of condemnation and filled with sympathy.
"You did it for the child, didn't you?"
He let her go. "You have a very tender heart." Adam didn't say it like her family did, like it was a weakness. Adam made her tender heart sound like a strength. Meagan smiled.
"Okay, about those rose bushes."
They finally agreed on ten plants after a vigorous argument. Adam wanted them all to be the same color for uniformity. Meagan thought a rainbow of colors would look prettier. They compromised by choosing three of the crimson roses, three Queen Elizabeth's which were a lovely soft shade of pink and four plants with white blooms. Adam wasn't thrilled, but he had agreed after Meagan reminded him that she was the expert on roses.
Adam didn't exactly stomp off to arrange delivery of the new bushes, but he came close. She wanted to laugh. She headed toward a grower's table heavy with petunia seedlings in every imaginable shade. They would be perfect for the science class she planned tomorrow. Carefully examining each plant, Meagan had selected twenty by the time Adam returned.
"What are all of these for?"
Adam wasn't done being angry that she'd dared to disagree with him over the rose bushes. "Our science class tomorrow. We're doing a lesson on plants."
"You may not have noticed, but you only have two students."
Adam's sarcastic tone grated on Meagan's nerves. "Of course I noticed, but I want to do things right."
"I see." His tone of voice said that he clearly didn't. "Wouldn't vegetables have more long term teaching potential?"
"Not necessarily. Besides, if we need to study the growth habits of vegetables, we have acres of corn."
"Yes. Right. It looks like I'll have to get something to put these in."
Meagan wanted to laugh. He was definitely used to getting his own way. It was time he learned more about variety and compromise. Adam had the look of a man whose carefully laid plans were crumbling around his feet.
He hadn't seen anything yet.
Monday, May 26, 2008
I once watched Mick Jagger and the lead singer from Matchbox 20 eat an entire meal. “No thanks” I said to the waiter, “I’ll just have water while I wait for my friends.” OK, I was lying, but the waiter didn’t have to know.
Now, I’ve been asked to blog about my life and my new book, THE BIG ASS BOOK OF CRAFTS (Simon & Schuster).
Let me start with my life. My life probably looks a lot more interesting from the outside. I host a daily TV show called 10 Years Younger and am on several other shows as an interior designer. While You Were Out, My Celebrity Home and She’s Moving In. Or as I like to call it, GET YOUR CRAP OUT OF THE HOUSE BECAUSE I’M MOVING IN!
Being on TV is not what you think it is. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun, but not for the reasons you might think. It’s a chance to do your art (craft) for a large audience and get paid for it. It’s also a great chance for my mother to keep an eye on me. “Are you eating enough, you looked thin in that episode!” I’m going to be brutally honest here and just say it, it’s also a great chance for all of those snotty kids in high school who treated you like dirt to SUCK IT! Ok, I’ve said it. It’s true and anyone who had a terrible high school experience like I did and made something of themselves feels the exact same way. I’d bet my best pair of Luis Vuitton loafers on it. The ones I wore to the Emmy’s. Yes, the Emmy’s. Eat that Eric, you dumb wedgy giving jock! Now you’re bald and there aren’t any cheerleaders hovering around you. Revenge is sweet and whoever says differently used to be a jock in high school and is now selling used cars and wearing a squirrel fur toupee.
But, I digress.On my down time I write books about all of the stuff I get to make on my shows. All of the candle holders, headboards, vases, and room dividers are photographed and put in a book for later. When I’m not filming, I’m remaking these items so people can decorate their homes inexpensively……and at the same time enjoy the process of creating something with their own hands. It’s what I love to do almost more than anything. THE BIG ASS BOOK OF CRAFTS is damn cool. It’s a great gift, it weighs almost 4 lbs, it has almost 200 projects and 400 pages and I worked my BIG ASS off on making it something really special. I hope you all take a look at it.
My day today was pretty typical. Called my agent, nothing right now! Called my best friend Walter (He’s 93 and pretty cranky unless he’s had a few.), then worked on some 18th Century erotic art jewelry for a boutique I’m selling to. Called my brother who’s helping me design my new book cover art and snacked on everything in sight. I have too much time on my hands today. I have to clean this damn place because I am forever making a mess. That is was I do, I craft and make a mess. Every day, every hour, every minute. I’m either cleaning up my crap or making a new pile of it. I should just learn to accept it, but I just can’t.
Now I’m blah blah blah-ging away and hoping that I don’t sound like a fool. I listen to NPR all day and get depressed about the world. The earthquakes and the cyclones and the homeless and the gas prices. I know I should turn off the radio but I just can’t. It makes me feel lucky to have what I have and do what I do. It gives me perspective and with that comes guilt. I usually don’t write about this, but today I did a good deed for someone I’m having a hard time with. They will never know it because I don’t want them to. It’s between me and God. Yes, God! And let me tell you, SHE loves when I do good deeds! I try to do good deeds all the time and keep them under the radar. Otherwise what good is it? I would think you might be doing it for the wrong reasons if you had to be recognized for your actions. For example, if you are going to dedicate a wing to a hospital, then name it after someone amazing, not yourself because you have tons of cash, call it the “Really Cool Guy Who Fixed My Tire Last Week” Wing, or the “My Mom Rocks” Wing. Much more interesting. Anyway, I did this little deed and have been trying to do these things as often as possible but, it’s hard.
I struggle with what it means to be a good person because I have such huge self preservation instincts. I think we all might, I don’t know. Either way, it’s a struggle that I’m learning to overcome. With that I can say my biggest good deed is this. I’ve learned to share my gifts with the world. I can make anything out of anything and I want to empower people to feel the same. I want people to know that they can create anything and that creativity is something we ALL have. My good deed is to inspire and to keep shining as brightly as I can. That’s all I can do really.
Note from Lucy: The Big Ass Book of Crafts is amazing! Hubcap's already got tons of ideas for stuff after flipping through it. And you know I like to share the wealth, so I'll be drawing a name from the comments on this post and the winner will receive Mark's previous release, "Dollar Store Decor." All I've got to say is that if you like doing crafts, or want to do crafts and are worried you aren't "creative enough" - these books are SO for you. :)
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Watch this...it's funny!!!
And our blog winner for last week is:
Hon, if you could just email me your details, I'll get your book from the prize closet and some chocolate right out to you. :) I've got some awesome books on the prize closet shelves right now. Books by Jane Porter, Suzanne MacPherson, Julie Garwood, etc.
Happy Sunday, everyone!
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Maybe it's time to start the online serial?
Jenna scooted deeper into the corner shadows as an ale tankard slammed into the wall not three inches from her head. The hour grew late and the pub's patrons, a tough lot to begin with, had grown rowdy with drink. She desperately wanted to leave, but had nowhere to go. Nowhere anyone would accept her for who and what she was.
The door to the pub crashed against the wall, drawing the attention of every person inside - from drunken, brawling patron to the slatternly barkeep. Dark outside and barely more lit by the meager candles in the cheap pub, even she could not make out the features of the man who stood in the doorway, but she had no problem discerning his size.
A giant, he had to duck under the doorframe while his broud shoulders brushed it on both sides as he entered.
Who was he? Why had he come?
He tilted his head...as if sniffing, but how he could smell anything in this dank place filled with unwashed bodies, she could not imagine. She was grateful that her extra senses, those spurred by her animal side - the side that had her running from all that she'd ever known - gave her better eye-sight, but not an improved ability to smell.
The big man made his way through the other patrons, ignoring them as if they did not exist. If she did not know better, she would think he was headed toward her. But that would be rediculous. No one here knew her. She had nothing of value to steal.
Nevertheless, he stopped mere inches from her, his body blocking out those around them, his scent something amazing - making her lean toward him without realizing what she was doing.
A huge hand landed on her shoulder. "I've come for you, boy."
The realization that he had not seen through her disguise was her last coherant thought as the world around her went black.
What do you think? Should I keep going? Anybody have a clue what world these might inhabit?
Friday, May 23, 2008
I cannot wait to see the new Indiana Jones movie, how about you? Until then, here's a cool vid to watch that shows Harrison Ford being truly heroic and more manly than even his alter ego, Indiana.
And I've found the PERFECT game for DQ to play when she's not busy on the phone. Yeah, uh...that does happen from time to time. I'm sure of it...I don't have visual testimony, but I gotta believe that. LOL
The way of the future? Really? You gotta read this - I think it's pretty cool.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
And not just Hubcap and the teens. But my mom and siblings, nieces and nephews and Hubcap's family as well. These are the key people in my life. The ones that get the last inch I have to give when they need it. I've got a pretty close family. Big too. But it's not all rose blossoms and cherry sundaes. Really.
With a closely-knit, large family, there is always someone going through something. It's like a law, or something. And you never, ever get to make a decision in a vaccuum. Or raise your kids that way. Or change your personal style without comment. (Mostly good in my family, but not always. ::g::)
For the most part, that's a pretty wonderful thing. I can call my mom when I need advice on anything and she's there for me. The advice sometimes comes out a little stronger than she intends as since her stroke a few years back, her filters don't function so well. Usually, that's pretty funny. Sometimes, it can make even the perkiest person growly. LOL Getting advice on raising my kids - that's not so easy to take. Especially those times my sibs and I hold pretty different viewpoints. We're all good parents, but we don't always agree on what that means. And we've probably all got the mental scars to prove it. :)
And just because family are the most important people in your life doesn't mean they are the ones that understand you best. Just ask my teenagers!
But a close-knit family means you've got a support network unlike any other. That you don't have to be lonely - so long as you don't push them away (a niece and nephew or two have had to learn that lesson along the way). It means that people who you love, love you back. And we all know not all families operate that way. Which I find heartbreaking. I just wanna love everybody, but especially my family, you know?
It also means that Christmas is a wild holiday and you celebrate more birthdays and anniversaries than the average person. I love presents - both giving and receiving - so for me, this is a huge benny. LOL And you don't have to go to a scary doctor appointment alone, unless you don't tell anybody about it. Big sisters will remind you to eat because you forget and so will little sisters. Nieces and nephews will hold a place in your heart a lot like the ones your own children have and even the most annoying family members are free to stop by for a cup of coffee and a cookie when they need to talk.
I wouldn't give my family up for anything! It astonishes me when people walk away from a good family - but I find it equally incredible when good people put up with horrific stuff from a bad one. (Back to the I wanna love everybody aspect of my nature. Sigh...)
I guess this is on my mind because one of my nephews took that walk a few months ago (not for the first time) and now he wants back in. It's not that easy, you know? There's a lot of anger to get through. Life isn't lived in the big dramatic moments only, it's lived in the day to day minutae. You gotta stick around for all of it if you want your relationships to work. Right?
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Now mind you, I'm all for surprises. But I did run through my head real quick, trying to remember all the stupid things I said or did over the past two decades. Was it going to be a lovefest, all romantic and wonderful? Or was it going to be a drive to a "remote location", with a bump on the head and concrete shoes? I figured it was the latt...er, um, former. After all, I've been good, right? RIGHT?
Well the Big Day came, and off we went.
As we went further and further from town, things were looking....well, remotely located.
"Turn here," Lucy said. Then she gave further directions. All said and done, we pulled up to......THE BONNEVILLE HOT SPRINGS RESORT.
Holy Smokes, what an incredible place! And I wasn't going to die!
I just want to go on record and thank everyone (and the Academy) for their suggestions and input for where to spend our Anniversary. It was, I must say, the best time we've ever had. A huge suite, a balcony almost as large, WITH a hot tub filled with mineral waters. We used that hot tub like crazy!
The place is super peaceful, and built like a lodge, very beautiful (yeah I said it, the B word). As soon as we arrive, we had our first appointment, a eucalyptus mineral bath with follow-up body wrap. Now, I've never sat in rockwater, and have never had my body wrapped in towels. At least, not by a man. But there's always a first time.
That bath was amazing (at least when I turned the water temperature from "Stir Fry" to "Comfortably Hot"). I was totally relaxed, eating grapes, feeling....well, a bit feminine...WAIT A GOLDARN MINUTE, THAT AIN'T RIGHT! I promptly leaped into the other bath, which was filled with.....freezing water. Yes sir, that's a bath a real man would take! And yes, I promptly leapt back into the comfy hot eucalyptus bath, having made my shriveled point. I'm glad you agree.
The body wrap, of course, had me thinking odd references, like "The Geek Mummy" and "Indiana Jones and the Body Wrap of Doom". Soft music playing, I really enjoyed it, save those brief times when the guy would come in and ask, "Are you warm enough?" Well, YOU'RE not gonna find out! Now go replace that chamomile compress on my forehead, I'm not feeling manly enough...
The next day, Lucy had set up full body massages for the two of us. The two guys walk into our suite, set up the tables, and as we get on the tables, they ask, "Now, do you like a lot of pressure? Not everyone does." Heck, we do great under pressure! Do your worst! We're thinking, "We can handle THIS!"
And on the actual Anniversary date, in a historic hotel in Columbia Gorge; to-die-for salmon and steak meals that were literally too good to eat! And in all of this, beautiful (there's that word) scenery, watching Kitesurfers on the Columbia, a great museum with petroglyphs in it. Fun, sun, peace. Surrounded by the sounds and sights of Nature.
For details on how to enter, head to the AuthorIsland.com Contest page and good luck!
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
I'm a huge fan of Mark and when I found out he had a new book out, "The Big-Ass Book of Crafts," not only did I have to order it immediately from Amazon, but I emailed him and asked if he wouldn't like to be our guest here. I'm super thrilled to say that he agreed!
The other "celeb to you all" guest blogger that was supposed to have his trip report about our Anniversary Getaway done for yesterday has promised, promised, promised to have it ready for tomorrow! So, be looking for Hubcap's take on our trip to celebrate 20 fantastic years. :)
You all did so well last time, I thought we'd have a little fun again and do a NAME THAT BOOK teaser. You're hint? This is a picture of the heroine's namesake (the one in front) on the catwalk during a bridal show.
So, here's the teaser:
She was halfway down the catwalk when her gaze snagged on a pair of green eyes. The color of new grass, they were set in a face as hard as granite and as sexy as sin.
The look in those eyes caught her as effectively as if the man’s hands had closed over her shoulders and halted her mid-step. She did in fact stop, her body freezing with a blast of sensations totally alien to her. Sensations that belied every one of the nasty headlines.
Her pause lasted only a second, but she felt the first blush she’d had in years crawling hotly up her skin.
The man’s thin lips quirked in a knowing smile.
Obviously aware that he was the cause of her hesitation, his expression reflected a mixture of mocking humor and blatant male approval.
She’d spent years learning to ignore the masculine admiration her body elicited. For her, the perfectly proportioned curves were a tool of her trade, nothing more, but this man’s look went zinging to the very heart of her.
Frissons of awareness skittered along her nerve endings, leaving goose bumps of sensation in unlikely places.
She stopped at the end of the stage, which happened to be right in front of his table while two other models wearing eveningwear came down the catwalk to flank her.
His eyes flared with pleasure as she stood in a mannequin still pose before him and his dark blonde head tilted slightly, as if he was adjusting his angle to look at her better.
An electric current vibrated across the space between them, inexorably connecting them.
Unbelievably, her nipples grew hard and her breasts felt tight while her thighs trembled with the effort it took to maintain her pose.
She’d never reacted during a show this way. Not ever.
Only years of practice and discipline made it possible for her to move through her choreographed routine with the other two models. However, no matter which direction she turned, she felt that amazing connection.
It was scary.
I'll draw a winner from the comments on this post to receive the book. :) And if you already have it? You can do a book of choice instead.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
You've both won a book from my prize shelves (these are books by other authors that I keep to give away) and some lovely chocolate. :)
Congrats, ladies. Just email me with your details so I can get your prizes mailed out!
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Just today, we are moving Noob (that would be my 6'5"+ son built like a linebacker that we often refer to as Boy as is Vietnamese custom for the eldest son - passed down by his banoi, but who calls himself Noob - anyone in hacking knows why) into his new room, a detached building beside our house. He'll be 18 on Christmas as we wanted a good situation for him while he goes to college because he wants to live at home. He's got one more year of high school, but he's happy for the extra level of privacy now. :) He wanted the college "blanket over the window and shag carpet" look, I compromised with simple light blocking curtains and a shag throw rug on the floor. Can you imagine what could live in a wall to wall shag carpeted room occupied by a teenage boy? He's got his own water cooler and walls made entirely of pegboard. He's in teenage boy Heaven. LOL
I'm pretty happy myself. I love seeing my kids pleased, you know? I'm also way excited because I got my author copies of the print edition of Meagan's Chance!! They are gorgeous. Happy, happy sigh!
I'll be drawing the two weekly contest winners tonight and posting them tomorrow remember, so check back.
Here you go:
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
While I'm gone you've got two wonderful guest bloggers to visit with, lots of good books to read (I'm sure) and I may even post from the hotel. We'll see... ::wink::
Just so you know I haven't forgotten, I'm hoping Hubcap will write up the rest of our Vacation trip report and maybe our Anniversary one too. He's just so much funnier than me. LOL *I* love reading his accounts of our travels.
DQ has said she'll try posting her winner again...keep an eye out. And speaking of contests, both of our guest bloggers have generously offered prizes on their blog posts and I will be drawing two general blog winners from this week's comments for books from the prize closet and chocolate to go with. :)
Hugs to you all,
If you’re ever in the Big Easy, there are some things you just have to do. Here’s my personal list of the top ten things to do in New Orleans:
1) Eat a beignet. It’s fried dough. Enough said.
2) Go on a swamp tour. Watching alligators jump into the air to snag raw chicken is quite a sight. Plus there is something amazingly peaceful about the swamp.
3) Try the infamous drink, the Hurricane, at Pat O’Briens. They have a beautiful courtyard and you get to keep the glass. If you remember to take it with you after you’ve reached the bottom of the Hurricane. ;-)
4) Dine al fresco. Napoleon House and The Court of Two Sisters are favs of mine.
5) Stay in a haunted hotel. I’ve never seen anything yet, but I’m trying.
6) Visit the Cities of the Dead. The cemeteries in New Orleans are striking, serene, crumbling, and fascinating.
7) Explore voodoo. Separate fact from fiction at authentic voodoo shops.
8) Visit River Road Plantations. Step back in time at plantations like Oak Alley, where Interview With The Vampire was filmed.
9) Have your tea leaves read. How they see anything in the mess in your cup is beyond me, but it’s definitely interesting.
10) Visit my favorite musicians playing on Bourbon Street.
Do you have a city you absolutely love? Or a city you’d like to see someday? I’m giving away a copy of FALLEN to a random person who comments today (Tuesday). I’ll let Lucy pick the winner.
Lucy, thanks again for having me visit!
Wow, here I am at Lucy's blog. Very cool. Thanks so much to Lucy for having me today. When Lucy came up with the idea I should be one of her guests, I have to admit, I had a minor fan girl moment. Once the excitement passed, I pondered the age-old question, what am I going to blog about?
With the release of my seventh full-length book this week, Bombshell 2 Boardroom, I soon had an answer. Kissing, one of the best parts and a major plot point in any great romantic book or movie. Only they are always pretty much perfect in fiction and on screen, which isn't always the way in real life.
The best kiss in my humble opinion is the first kiss the hero and heroine share. In Bombshell 2 Boardroom, my heroine Candace pushes Randal the delicious hero to the point he couldn't decide if he should wring her neck, or kiss her. Well like a good hero, he ends up kissing her out of frustration. Ah, a happy moment in their world and of course in that case since Randal's frustration was also sexual; things went past the point of kissing. That though, is another post **wicked grin**
In Lying Eyes & Alibis, the kiss had completely different origins of how it came to be. An innocent water fight, an undying attraction and a hero and heroine left staring into each other's eyes. The conversation became whispered and breathless while temptation played a hand and won. The mutual kiss, the slow, both inching their faces closer until the first thing that touches the lips is hot breath then the gentle brush of the mouth. Sigh, ah the sweetness.
As a romance writer, I always have new and interesting characters with different personalities and of course, kisses. I have had the characters bring their lips together for a variety of reasons. In All That Ice, it was the only way Craven the yummy Alaskan male hero, could keep the heroine Amber quiet and stop her from arguing. However, that kiss ended with her in a snow bank alone and her temper in full swing. Things only heated up from there both in and out of the bedroom.
So for research sake and general curiosity, because not only is the legendary lip locking interesting it's a great pastime. What do you think is the best kiss in a book or movie? Can you name one you've read or saw that made you sigh or laugh? What is your favorite kind of kiss? The slow burn or the hot passionate "take me now!" type kiss? Go ahead and give me some insight here and I will have my own Teen Drama Queen pick a winner for a PDF of Bombshell 2 Boardroom, which comes out on the 15th as well as a winner for a PDF of Lying Eyes & Alibis.
Thanks again to Lucy for having me!
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Then, in a couple of days, I'll draw a name from all the comments to this post and that winner will receive a book of choice from me. :)
Speaking of winners, DQ told me she has posted the winner to the comment section on her blog. I'm still waiting to hear from the lucky poster. :)
Hugs and thanks!
Friday, May 09, 2008
Just for kicks, I figured I'd post another snippet from the book. This one is from the secondary storyline. I had so much fun with this book, it ought to be illegal. LOL
Another foreign curse came from the new Project Manager’s end of the lab.
Chantal bit her lip and looked over her shoulder to find Mat scowling at one of the technicians.
Again. The poor tech looked ready to cry.
Who could blame him? Mat was over six feet tall with the solid muscles found in many Ukrainian men. The only colors she’d ever seen him wear were black and shades of grey. Even his lab coat was a special order slate grey. When she’d told him the monochromatic dressing made him look like a hit man for the Russian mob, Mat had admitted he was color blind – after giving her a lecture on the difference between the two nationalities. He’d told her that dressing like this was his way of preventing himself from leaving the house looking like a circus clown. But added to that, his black as coal hair, trim mustache and close cropped beard gave him a decidedly intimidating look.
Especially when he was angry. Like now.
Mat never had been the warm-fuzzy type. Calling him a people person was a stretch even she hadn’t been able to make when she was head over heels for the man. He wasn’t the worst manager in the world. In fact, he was actually pretty decent at it and even better when his scientists and technicians were efficient. Only he had an abrasive way of dealing with them if they weren’t.
Abrasive as in almost scary until you got to know him better.
Deciding their department really couldn’t afford to lose another team member after their former PM’s disappearance, Chantal got up from her lab stool and headed toward the mini-contretemps.
“Wake up on the wrong side of the bed this morning?” she asked Mat with a smile and a nod for the technician.
Mat turned his scowl on her while the tech he’d been upbraiding stared at her as if she’d just stepped in an electromagnetic field and then tried to use her electron scan microscope.
She turned up the wattage on her smile and made sure it included both men. “Is there a problem here, gentlemen?”
“I…uh…” The technician swallowed twice and gave Mat a sidelong glance before continuing. “I was trying to explain to Dr. Chernichenko that we’d already done the tests on mercury reclamation from fluorescent bulbs and that the ROI was too low to make it a viable project.”
Chantal remembered the tests. “Unless a different reclamation process can be developed, I agree.” She looked up at Mat, trying to ignore how being this close to him made her body go haywire. “Were you thinking of trying a different process?”
“I want more information on the one already tried,” he said with a stubborn tilt to his chin.
It was the technician’s turn to glare at her.
“I can get that for you and fill you in on the preliminary trials if you like,” she added.
The sense of relief from the tech was palpable as he realized she wasn’t setting him up for more of the same with his new PM.
Mat frowned however. “I don’t want to take you away from something important.”
“Bringing the Project Manager for Material Reclamation up to speed on all our current and recent projects is important.”
Mat sighed and rubbed his eyes, a gesture she remembered from their college days that meant he was more stressed than tired. The man was almost inhuman when it came to getting tired…he could go for hours. In more arenas than academia. The thought brought the heat of a blush to her cheeks while her thighs clenched together involuntarily. Thank goodness for lab coats that hid embarrassing reactions.
“Thank you. I would appreciate that,” Mat said.
The look of shock the technician gave Mat’s polite response was comical, but Chantal did not crack a smile. Mat might think she was laughing at him and even she wasn’t going to beard this bear in that way.
To stop herself from reaching out and touching that particularly tempting bear, she crossed her arms under her chest. “It’s past lunch time and I don’t know about you, but I could use something to eat.”
Mat nodded, his grey gaze skimming her body like a barely there caress. “We could meet in the cafeteria…or we could go offsite.”
“The cafeteria would probably be better.” Less chance she would make a fool of herself. “We can talk freely without worrying about being overheard.”
Mat’s scowl was back. “I suppose.”
“Would you rather eat offsite?” And if so, why hadn’t he just said so?
He shut his eyes and tensed his jaw like he was trying to bite back words.
“We could eat in your office,” she suggested, wanting to take that look of strain off his features.
“We’d have privacy without the distractions.”
Which wasn’t going to do a thing for her own strain, but she had to deal with her attraction to him or quit her job. And she had no desire to leave Environmental Technology Research and Design.
“You’d think so, wouldn‘t you?” He opened his eyes, the irises storm cloud gray now.
She remembered that shade, but not from frustration at work. Stifling a groan, she gave herself a strong mental shake. Her attempts to deal with her reaction to him were not going to succeed if she couldn’t stop memories of the past from intruding on the present.
The reminder should have been enough to bolster her flagging self-control. It didn’t. The problem being that she’d been using the same self-lecture for two weeks and it wasn’t getting any more powerful with repetition.
“What do you mean?” she asked.
“Nothing you need to worry about.”
“Okay then. We’ll meet in your office.”
“Yes.” The clipped single-word response wasn’t all that he was thinking, but typical for the stoic scientist, he wasn’t sharing whatever else was on his mind.
Chantal had enough of her own worries, she should not be concerned with his. Only it never worked that way. By nature, she was too empathetic to others and it was even worse when it came to this man. She had to watch it to stop his moods from dictating her own, even when they hadn’t said a single word to each other.
The last two weeks had proven one truth beyond the shadow of a doubt. She was not and probably never would be completely over Matej Chernichenko.
On the other hand, I discovered a couple of new to me blogs that are really stellar - um, way better than anything I could come up with for daily entertainment and communication. It's a good thing you all hang around here because I love the connection this blog gives me to readers and I feel even more blessed when I realize how many other, more entertaining, blogs you've all got to go to. Maybe - on days I have a little extra time - I'll visit these other ones too.
The one thing that hit me as I read the different blogs was not the stuff that had gone on at RT. It was the over the top negative response some people had to honestly expressed experiences and opinions. Weird! I mean, you all know, I am not a fan of hurtful snark. I'm not impressed with bloggers (men and women alike) who sound like they are in perpetual PMS, but I've never once suggested those bloggers keep their opinions to themselves. What would be the point? Lots of people (my daughters included) love that sort of thing.
I really have a hard time understanding any attempt made to close down discussion centered around heartfelt opinions and that leads me to what is really bothering me. Or making me think. It's the belief that an author lacks professionalism when expressing a negative opinion about something in her professional life.
How much do I personally buy into that mindset and at what point do I disagree with it?
After wrestling with the idea for a while, I've come to the conclusion that I *don't* believe it is. In fact, I believe there are times it is necessary. A person needs to say something about what they consider to be unjust, uncouth, or unconsciounable. Not to do so, leaves them in tacit agreement with the unnacceptable.
Does that person put her or himself at risk for rebuttal? Of course. Can the perceived "lack of loyalty" put more than that person's frustration levels at risk? Yes.
Is that right? No. Which makes it even more important to speak up about the things that really matter. So, no one has to stand alone.
Ideally, we would count the cost before making public declarations one way or another and determine if they are worth making. For me, some are. Some are not and some I don't even think about.
Would I have spoken out publicly against some of the things that happened at RT this year? Definitely. Would I have taken people to task personally? Probably. Would I grieve the negative reaction afterward? Without a doubt, but that wouldn't stop me from doing it. Someone else might feel differently. I know what my tolerance levels are.If even half of what I've read regarding the events at this year's RT Convention is unbiased revelation, those levels would have been breached. Big time.
I have spoken out publicly about certain things and had my hands slapped. Issues like adultery in romance novels, overturning a happy ending, mean-spirited criticism of my friends or colleagues, the dismissive attitude some have toward the smaller presses like ePublishers, romance authors who themselves cut down our genre in personal rhetoric, and anyone who claims there is only one way to write a wonderful book.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
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Tuesday, May 06, 2008
(c) Lucy Monroe
Tino tried calling faith several times, but his calls were sent straight to voicemail every time. He left messages, but they were ignored. He sent her text messages that received no reply either.
He couldn't believe his affair with Faith was over.
He wouldn't believe it.
She wasn't acting like herself and he was going to find out why. And fix it, damn it.
He was as sweet and delightful as ever.He hung back after class to talk to her and she enjoyed that. Today though, he was fidgeting.
"Is something the matter, sweetheart?"
He grinned. "I like it when you call me that. It's like a mama would do, you know?"
Suppressing the stab of pain at his words, she reached out and brushed his hair back from his face. "I'm glad. Now, tell me if something is wrong."
"Nonna said I could invite you for dinner."
"That is very kind of her."
"Only Papa said you probably wouldn't come."
"Why won't you come again? I thought you and Papa were friends."
"I didn't say I wouldn't come."
"So, you will?" Giosue asked, his little boy face alight with hope.
"When does your nonna want me to come?"
"She said this Friday would be good."
"It just so happens I am free this Friday." It was foolish to agree, but she couldn't stand to see the hurt of disappointment come into Giosue's eyes.
Besides there was a tiny part of her that wanted to show Tino he was wrong. Just a small part.
Thursday, May 01, 2008
Hubcap and I bought a new bed to celebrate our 20th Anniversary and gave our current bed to M2B (she's been begging us for it for almost a year - dropped several heavy hints about us buying a new bed ::wink::). Hubcap is moving the beds around and what does he find in M2B's room? Nothing but multiple boxes of crackers, the Cheez-Its included. I guess we all know what my darling pregnant daughter has been craving. LOL
We all know you don't have to be pregnant to crave certain types of food. What's your weirdest or most common craving?