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Showing posts from August, 2013

I'm sharing some historical photographs today! By Kathryne Kennedy

My family and I visited the Phoenix Art Museum last weekend, and of course I headed for the European/American History exhibit right away. To my surprise, they had changed the rules to allow photographs of many of their displays, so I'm sharing the best of them with you all today. The art museum has a miniatures room, with glass cases of historically accurate rooms as they would appear in the nineteenth century (1800's), which of course includes my favorite Victorian era. Although the miniatures are such fun to study in person, the rooms actually look real in a photograph. I have a difficult time getting royalty-free pics for my blog and website, so I thought I'd share these with you all in case you'd like to use some yourself. You'll see some French designs, many European scenes, and some that are American. Enjoy! And here's some photographs I took of some remarkable paintings: Feel free to copy

The party's over... By Cheryl Brooks

Oh, wow... summer's just about gone. The kids are back in school and some leaves are already starting to fall. Book ten of my Cat Star Chronicle series, Rebel , won't be out until next July, and though I'm still getting reviews of book nine, Wildcat , which was released this past February, that's a long, long time between books. Not that I haven't been busy this summer. I self-published a four-book contemporary erotic romance series called Unlikely Lovers , and I've done some traveling, including attendance at a few writer's conferences. As a result of those conferences, I'm suffering from goodie bag overload. I've already given away two of them, but I have one left, so flex your fingers and get ready to post a comment for your chance to win! I put the bags together from the stuff you see here, and I included two of my Cat Star Chronicles books in each bag. This bag filled with predominately contemporary books has yet to be won, so here are

Fun with Research on GEEK GIRLS DON'T DATE DUKES

In only 5 days, GEEK GIRLS DON'T DATE DUKES will release. It seems unreal. I don't know if it was crazy fast or impossibly slow, but somehow, the time has passed and Leah and Avery will go out into the world to share their story with everyone! It's definitely a trippy thing. I thought it was weird when I had one book in paperback, but now? You may as well toss me in the loony bin. ;) I wanted to do something a little different with this book. I ADORE Regency romances, but sometimes they can be a bit predictable. Of course the beautiful young lady is going to fall for a handsome, titled gentleman, right? That's just how these things work! I know this, you guys know this, fans of Regencies all over the world know this. Leah Ramsey knows this, so when she goes back in time, that's who she's convinced she's going to find. Hurray for the unexpected! I definitely got to delve a little deeper into the time period in this book than its' predecessor, TH

Come to the Light Side

The paranormal genre doesn’t have to be dark. There are a myriad of zany opportunities for fun if you look at comedy the way I do. My #1 rule? Nothing is off limits. ANYthing …The crazier, the better…can be utilized to add comic relief or create downright laugh-out-loud humorous reads. That said, I’ll admit that editors don’t have the same rule. Yes, they’ll pull me back when I step out over the edge, but they do appreciate my skirting right along that edge. As Brenda Chin once said in a humor workshop, “I can take it out, but I can’t put it in.” My best piece of advice for lightening the mood in a paranormal story? Don’t overlook the obvious! Let’s take a moment to embrace the clich├ęs. Think about Vampires. What does everyone “know” about vampires? A) They have fangs and drink blood, usually by puncturing the victim’s carotid artery. B) They’re nocturnal and sunlight burns them. C) They’re immortal until staked, beheaded or burned to a crisp.  How about Shapeshifte

10 Reasons to Date an MMA Fighter by Sarah Castille

MMA fighters are hot. Don't believe me? Check out a few MMA websites, maybe watch a live event, drool over Georges St-Pierre's Facebook page (I do!). You will discover man candy abounds in the rings and cages of the MMA world. And what better way to celebrate the September 3 release of my erotic MMA fighter romance, Against the Ropes, than by convincing you that fighters are not all hot, sweaty bodies and tight little shorts over toned **ahem** bottoms. They are serious professional athletes, consummate performers, and definitely worth a shot on the dating front. So, without further adieu... 10 Reasons to Date an MMA Fighter Warning: not for the faint of heart, persons under the age of 18 or anyone expecting a gratuitous reference to the infamous "rear naked choke hold". 1. For an MMA fighter, it's all about technique. 2. They know how to score from many positions. 3. MMA fighters always use the best protection. 4. "My boyfriend is an MMA fi

Mixing Sam & Dean Winchester into a historical novel

Sometimes books flow easily, others are dragged from me thanks to massive doses of caffeine and chocolate. Mostly, my books come with a mixture of both with some scenes arriving fully formed, others being written and rewritten until my fingers bleed. (Actually, they usually become chocolate stained, but I digress...) What the Bride Wore was of the hard-fought variety. Perversely, I think it makes it one of my best books just because of the struggle. At the very beginning, the book's core had little to do with romance. I've been watching a lot of Supernatural and was very intrigued by the two brothers. Sam and Dean anyone? So I wanted to write two brothers with a simple but profound difference in perspective. Will, the younger brother (and the hero of Winning the Bride ) is like Dean in that it's all about doing the work. He doesn't say much, but his actions speak volumes. Grant is the older brother (hero of What the Bride Wore ) and is more cerebral. He th

One Sweet Weekend

Last weekend I had a birthday. This in itself wasn’t a surprise. My birthday, like that of most people, happens every year around pretty much the same time. No, what surprised me—in an amazed and delighted way—was the variety of sweets involved. And my threshold for being surprised by sweets is pretty high, being descended as I am from a father who invented his own praline recipe and a grandfather who liked to consume four cookies with his midmorning coffee each day. Here, take a look at the weekend’s bounty: A friend and I escaped our kids for an afternoon and sampled these French macarons , made with almond flour and filled with ganache. The flavors, clockwise from top, are chocolate hazelnut (like Nutella, but handmade), chocolate orange, cherry lime, and coconut caramel. Being a fan of coconut, this last one was my favorite. That buttery dark caramel was one of the best things I’ve ever tasted. These are Indian ladoo , made with besan (chickpe

Some Thoughts about Geography

by Deb Werksman Editorial Manager Sourcebooks Casablanca Several times in the last few weeks I’ve found myself quoting a particular set of statistics to my authors, so I thought I would share the info here. This comes from RWA’s website, from their data about romance readers. 38% of romance readers are located in the South 26% are in the Midwest 19% are in the West 17% are in the Northeast This is really, really important to think about as you think about reaching your readers. The old saw “it won’t play in Peoria” has to be expanded to include maybe Savannah, Little Rock, and Louisville. This doesn’t mean you have to locate your contemporary romances in the South or the Midwest, but it does mean you’ll want to be sensitive to your readers’ locations, local cultures, and sensibilities. Thoughts? All best, Deb Werksman

Only the Best by Shana Galen

Have you ever watched that channel that shows nothing but movie trailers? Sometimes I catch my husband watching it between sporting events. It’s so funny to see trailers for movies five or even ten years old. The thing I love about trailers are that they tend to pull some of the best parts of the movie to reel us into wanting to see it. I thought I’d try that with this blog. I’ll show you my favorite lines from five chapters of The Spy Wore Blue: A Lord and Lady Spy novella and reel you in! And in breaking news, THE SPY WORE BLUE is only 99 cents right now. That's a matinee price! Chapter One But something went wrong. A sound startled her or the wind knocked her cloak in front of her eyes, and the pistol went off before she was ready. She swore, watching as the man fled. She was usually a much better shot. She did not know how she could have missed him. Blue would certainly have some criticism or other. But when she looked for him, he was gone. She heard