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Showing posts from February, 2011

The Little Things That Say So Much

by: Leah Hultenschmidt, Senior Editor

What does Valentine's Day mean to you?

NOTE-- I will announce the contest winner HERE tomorrow -- MONDAY -- after NOON Mountain time. Comments welcome until then.

I ask that question as I sit with a huge heart shaped box of Valentine's Day candy that I ate WAY WAY too much of. This year, me and my honey, were so busy to enjoy Valentine's Day. He had class until late and we blinked and it was gone. So two days later, at midnight, we hit several stores and bought 50% off candy to pig out on. Not the most romantic Valentine's Day, but a half price yummy one. So the answer to the question -- what does Valentine's Day mean to me? -- this year -- half price chocolate.

Today -- instead of a first kiss excerpt -- I'm going to share a first meeting excerpt from LEGEND OF MICHAEL and I'm going to give out the very first ARC I've given out to anyone! How do you win? Just tell me what you did for Valentines' Day.





EXCERPT from LEGEND OF MICHAEL -- MAY 2011:

Nevada’s AREA 51 was not only the subject of …

First Kiss in the First Book.--Sara Taney Humphreys

Happy February Everyone! I am so very excited about my post today. Book 1 in my Amoveo Series is being released by Sourcebooks on October 4th! Whoo Hooo! I know that the release date is seven months away but my illustrious editor Deb Werksman thought it would still be okay to share the first kiss scene.

Before I share the scene with you, I should probably tell you what the heck this series is all about anyway. Right?

The Amoveo people are an ancient race of shape-shifters who have lived secretly among humans for thousands of years. They are made up of ten different animal clans. Eagle, Lion, Panther, Tiger, Bear, Wolf, Falcon, Fox, Cheetah, Coyote. They are telepathic, dream walking, shape-shifters that are born with a pre-destined soul mate. If an Amoveo does not find their mate by the time they reach the age of 30 they begin to lose their abilities and eventually die. They can only have children with their life mates. They are physically beautiful, incredibly strong and once they are …

Let the Wild Rumpus Begin by Grace Burrowes

The first kiss is a turning point in any romance by virtue of taking two people from being objects of interest to each other—perhaps antagonistic, flirtatious, or only passing interest—to, at least for a moment, being objects of fascination for each other. While the hero and heroine have each others' attention, the writer also has the reader’s attention, and it’s a prime moment to sketch in some character details. Here’s my first, first kiss to make it into print, from “The Heir, in a scene shared between Anna Seaton, a housekeeper with a lot of difficult secrets, and her employer, Gayle Windham, the Earl of Westhaven. Anna has just finished tending to the earl's injuries, and has perhaps done a little surreptitious admiring of his physique as well:

The earl took a step closer to her. “And what if I am in need, Anna Seaton, not of this great love you surmise between my parents but simply of some uncomplicated, lusty passion between two willing adults?”He took the last step bet…

Romance vs. Romantic Suspense vs. Suspense/Action/Adventure

By Deb Werksman
Editorial Manager
Sourcebooks Casablanca

Lately I’ve been seeing an interesting phenomenon in manuscripts as wide-ranging as Regencies, paranormals and romantic suspense. Over and over I’m bouncing manuscripts back to my authors saying, “your suspense/action/adventure is swamping the love story.”In the Romance category, the love story MUST be the center of the book. Elements of suspense or action/adventure in a romance are an exciting and interesting way to enhance the central relationship, cause tension or conflict, and move the story forward. But when the love story is subsumed into the action/adventure or the suspense elements, the book no longer belongs in the Romance category, and that’s problematic. Sometimes when I talk to authors about this, I discover that the characters and their relationship are fully fledged in the author’s mind, and they can tell me everything—the love story is more developed when they talk about the book, but somehow, that’s not…

Kisses by Stephanie Julian

Sometimes, you don't need any words.

Before the First Kiss by Tamara Hogan

I have to be honest and reveal that my first kiss kind of sucked. (In the bad way.) Not that the kisser wasn't a perfectly delightful boy... but that boy was a friend, not a boyfriend, and as readers of our blog certainly realize, this is a critical distinction. So when he laid the kiss on me - wholly unexpected, all tongue, and no technique - I thought kissing was eww, gross.

You'll be happy to know that I have since changed my mind.  Ahem.

While Taste Me's hero, incubus security guru Lukas Sebastiani, may not have given siren rock star Scarlett Fontaine her first kiss, he was definitely her first lover--and as the tagline on the cover of the book says, "When your first lover's a sex demon, it's all downhill from there." After spending a single, rock-my-world night together, Lukas, guilt-stricken, walked away without saying a word, leaving Scarlett wondering what she'd done wrong.  Years later, she's never had a lover to match him, and she's...…

"After the First Kiss... And Chicken Wire" by Catherine Mann

Yes, February is the month of Valentines, which leads to thoughts of falling in love, that first kiss… And then what? After the tingle of that first kiss has faded, does that mean the romance is gone?

I certainly hope not!

That brings me to a story about my own dear handsome hubby of twenty-three years. I’ve shared this story before, but it’s one of my favorites, especially this time of year. My husband is a gem in that he always kisses me goodbye before leaving for work or a trip. He always remembers my birthday, our anniversary, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, etc., even when the Air Force may have sent him thousands of miles away.

I do so enjoy when the delivery guy shows up with a surprise bouquet of wildflowers or my flyboy hubby struts in the door with a box of Godivas. But the longer we're married, the more I realize his best gifts can be less pricey and surprisingly unusual. My favorite ever romantic gesture from my husband?

Chicken wire.

Yes, you read that right. I sh…

Paper Kisses

By Anita Clenney

You know, until I read Mary Margret's blog, I couldn't remember my first kiss. I recall it now, just a quick peck, nothing spectacular. Now the kisses that stick in my head are the paper kisses. Ah...Donny Osmond. I fell in love with him at age nine and the love lasted for many years. Of course, I can't imagine what I was thinking now, but I adored him and gave his posters lots of kisses. I could almost feel his lips kissing me back, his arms pulling me close. Now my daughter is crazy about Justin Bieber, and he looks a lot like Donny did back then. Must be genetic.

Awaken the Highland Warrior is the first book in my Highland warrior series. Here is Faelan and Bree's first kiss. Not quite what she expected.

She started from the kitchen, when a crash sounded from her bedroom. Gripping the tray, she ran down the hall, coming to a halt in the doorway.

He was naked, sprawled face down on the bed, bare as the day he was born. The lamp was overturned, his clothe…

First Kiss Gone Wrong by Elisabeth Naughton

Late, but not never! (Someday I will learn how to set the post-ahead feature, I swear I will.)

I've had a lot of fun reading the first kiss posts this month. And I absolutely love reading first kiss scenes in romance novels. They're all so varied. One I have yet to read, however, is the first kiss gone wrong. Be honest, most of our first kisses probably didn't go the way we planned. Take me, for example. I remember my first kiss well. I was in middle school, and I'd had a crush on this boy for months, and he knew it. At one of our school dances he asked me to dance. I was giddy with nerves, super excited. He didn't say a word to me during the whole song and I didn't talk to him either, but when the music died, he kissed me on the cheek. Sounds sweet (and tame), right? Uh, not to me. The moment he kissed me my insides flipped from giddy to revolted and whatever crush I'd had on that boy flew right out the window.

First kisses don't always go the way we pla…

First Kiss Excerpt from THE FIRE LORD’S LOVER by Kathryne Kennedy

In honor of our month-long celebration of Valentine’s Day, I will be giving away an autographed copy of BENEATH THE THIRTEEN MOONS to one lucky commenter today (and look for another chance to win it in our grand prize drawing). So don’t forget to leave a comment and say hello!

For today’s post, I thought I’d offer an excerpt from THE FIRE LORD’S LOVER, book one of THE ELVEN LORDS, cause book two, THE LADY OF THE STORM, will be coming to bookstores in August, and geez, I’m just very excited about it!

Cass now stood facing her…new husband. She supposed she’d have to get used to that idea. Although she didn’t think she could ever get used to the coldness of his beautiful eyes. She’d hoped she could use the general to gather information about the elven, but right now he did not look like a man who could be used. Indeed, when his eyes met hers for a moment, a shiver of dread went through her.

The few times she’d visited him, he had treated her with a disinterest bordering on contempt. She’d f…

Kisses, SEALed, and Otherwise

By Mary Margret DaughtridgeThe other day, Shana admitted that her first kiss did nottransport her with delight. Well, Shana, I can beat that. I don’t remember my first kiss at all unless seventh-grade spin-the-bottle counts.But we all know those exploratory kisses of nascent sexuality are not the real thing. They’re practice runs,dress rehearsals. They’re not the make-or-break test that kissing will become later when finding a kiss unpleasant kills any hope of a relationship ever developing.The first kiss of true love or true lust—now that’s something to write home about. I well remember the first boy who kissed really well. But not the second. Or third.When it comes to the first kiss moment in a romance, writer of contemporary that I am, I often envy historical and Regency writers. Those guys have it easier, in my opinion. Heroines are almost always virgins, and what with chaperones and all, haven’t been kissed more than a few times in their lives—and almost surely they haven’t done …

Hero's First Kiss

Since we're talking about first kisses this month, I figured I post the first kiss scene from Hero. The problem with the first kisses I've written is that they're, well, let's just say I had to clean it up a bit for this particular blog. But I think you'll still get the general idea.

To set the scene, Trag and Micayla have been denying the attraction they feel for one another, but as the tagline says, "She's the last of her kind... and the only one for him."

Everyone is counting on them to mate, but both of them are resisting it to the bitter end. To give you an idea of just how long they've been denying the attraction, this scene falls near the end of Chapter 13. They've just left a discussion with some of their friends where it has come to light that, with the exception of Kyra, who is now his brother's mate and for whom Trag is still carrying a torch, Trag has only done the deed with hookers. The inference is made that he can only get it …

The Making of a First Kiss by Shana Galen

Let me begin by saying that my first kiss was nothing to write home about. It certainly wasn’t anything like the kiss I write between Armand and Felicity in The Making of a Gentleman. The interesting thing is that this kiss is Armand’s first. The comte has been imprisoned for twelve long years and has recently escaped France for the safety of his brother’s home in London. The duc, Armand’s brother, hires Felicity to tutor Armand, and the comte discovers she’s the only person who can touch him without causing him pain. He’s intrigued by her, and he’d like to do far more than kiss her.

Here’s a scene from The Making of a Gentleman…

“I’m not sure what you’re asking.” Her voice was low and trembling, but he did not think it was from fear. He narrowed his eyes and studied her face. No, she was definitely not afraid. Should he take that as a yes?

He wrapped an arm about her body, pulling her hard against him. The sensation was so strong, he almost gasped. Her heat and her softness burned into …