Seven days without gadgets and social media! Want to find out how I got on? Hint: I'd do it again in a heartbeat!Read More
Welcome to our multi-author hop!! Thank you so much for swinging by my page to celebrate Kathryn Le Veque's World of De Wolfe. I am so very honored to have been asked to write a story for Wade Wolfe and Jeremy Scatler, the couple you meet in the contemporary epilogue of The Wolfe.
You can buy a copy here, and watch what happens when a hot Navy SEAL falls for the sweet and sexy nurse of his dreams.
More than that though, I got to work alongside some AMAZING women who have written some tremendous books. I've stocked up my e-reader with them all.
In case I'm new to you, I am a contemporary romantic suspense writer, and my Second Circle Tattoos series is published by St. Martins. My first book, The Strongest Steel, is currently a finalist for the Best Debut Goodreads Author 2015. Click here if you'd like to vote.
In addition to the main prizes being given away, I will be adding my own. I will give away one book each to two lucky readers. Winner's choice - Together Again, Wade and Jeremy's De Wolfe Pack novella or The Strongest Steel - book one in my Second Circle Tattoos series. To enter, all you have to do is like my Facebook page, then head back here leave a comment. I'll be announcing the winner on this blog post tomorrow, so please check back to see if you have won.
In the mean time, please feel free to stay and have a look around or sign up for my newsletter, then head on over to check out some of these lovely ladies' blogs for more giveaways.
Alfred Hitchcock once said that drama is life with the dull bits cut out. It is very true.
It is also why romance novels make such great escapism. Take breakfast. In a great romance novel, the hero flies the heroine all the way to Paris for breakfast, because he knows how much she loves pain au chocolat. He takes her to a small café he knows in the 6th arrondissement, near the École des Beaux-Arts de Paris and hand feeds her the warm pastries. Or he brings her waffles in bed, where she awaits him in trillion-thread count cotton. They eat the hot waffles sensuously and share luscious strawberries, before using the left over syrup in seven, sinfully erotic ways.
Contrast that to my breakfast, which consists of drinking a smoothie as I throw school lunches together while informing my husband that the cat threw-up in the hallway again. That right there, is why we need romance novels. Because, unfortunately Mr. Hitchcock, our lives will always have the dull bits. It isn’t all rainbows and unicorns. And, for those days, which seem to have been filled by only dull bits, a romance novel is the best means of escape.
They say you always remember your first … and romance books are no exception. Mine was Jewels of the Sun, Book One of the Gallaghers of Ardmore Trilogy by Nora Roberts.
I was stranded. Chicago O’Hare airport and ice storms have a very unhealthy relationship, and I was stuck in the middle of one of their spats. With a very efficient travel office at my company, I quickly secured a bed at an airport hotel.
Now, I needed some entertainment. Up until this point, I had been a literary book snob. I’d just completed The Reader and The Pilot’s Wife because they had been Oprah’s Bookclub recommendations. But that day, with my travel plans at a grinding halt, with work piling up and a deep-seated desire to spend just one night in my own bed, I was in dire need of cheering up.
I was almost embarrassed to be browsing the romance section. The bright yellow book cover of Jewels called to me. I purchased it and went to my hotel where I promptly devoured the story of Jude and Aidan. As I awaited departure the next day, I went back to the bookstore to buy books 2 and 3. On the flight home, I lost myself in Shawn and Brenna’s story.
There have been other books and series since then that have changed the way I read, and view, all genres of romance. Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark Hunter series was my first paranormal romance. Vivian Arend’s Granite Lake Wolves were devoured in Barcelona. I blushed my way through Cherise Sinclair’s amazing Masters of the Shadowlands series and recently asked Cherise via twitter if she would consider a swap … my husband for Master Marcus … she said she’d think about it :-)
I’ve gone back to those heavy bookclub type books now and again and can appreciate them for what they are. I probably wasn’t the only person who gasped out loud at the end of We Need To Talk About Kevin. But for me, I’d rather escape in a great romance with a strong, alpha hero and a confident, capable heroine.
Thank you Nora :-)
I have 698 books in my kindle account. 696 are romance novels. The other 2 are gatecrashers. Python programming books by Mark Lutz that my husband ordered. I can't really complain about these interlopers because it's technically my husband's kindle account. Anyway, I digress. What I am trying to convey is that I've read my fair share of romance novels - contemporary and paranormal are my drug of choice.
So here is what I don't understand. How many times a day can one person shower? In some books, the characters are always in there. They shower before the other person wakes up, shower after the obvious, come home from work to shower while the other cooks dinner and then relax in a hot bath before bed. Some even shower at 3 o'clock in the morning. When I get in from a really late night, the last thing I want to do is shower. My husband is lucky if I wash my makeup off before I collapse into my tequila induced coma. Given I didn't marry Christian Grey or any other book boyfriend who would lovingly remove said makeup while saying in an inhumanely sexy voice, "There's my beautiful girl", hubby probably can't count the number of times he's woken up to next to a raccoon. It's irrational, I know, to get so agitated about such a basic civil duty as bathing, especially when the scenes are often well written, but you can only read about the soothing scent of jasmine or the perfect height of a ledge so many times before it has the same effect of a cold shower.
Yesterday was tough. I felt like I was missing out on something huge. Like the feeling I get when I know there is a shoe sale on and I can't get there for the start - you know what I'm talking about. The overwhelming fear that all the best deals will be gone by the time you get there and you'll be left with a pair of neon wedges.
Yesterday, I learned about #pitmad. You experienced writers all gave that same "ah!" at the same time. For me, as a newbie, it seemed like a feeding frenzy and I wasn't even close to the buffet.
I had just got my final round of revisions back from my editor on my first book and was just working my way through them to add the final polish. I had a plan to submit – a detailed list of publishers and agents that represent authors who write books similar to mine. A friend had brokered an amazing connection for me with a phenomenal lady from a well-known romance publishing house. I was working on a synopsis. Not quite ready but then I saw #pitmad on a post by a literary agent I have been following on twitter and my plan dissolved into a frantic race to describe my book in 140 characters. I burned hours playing around with words, polishing, perfecting and condensing.
I still had a day to go on the final edits and knew I couldn’t immediately submit which was against the rules and the rebel in me kept yelling just do it!
But I opted for patience. To have faith that the process I had carefully laid out would pay off. And on the plus side …. I now have seven or eight #pitmad pitches ready for the next time it comes around
I have just finished my first book, The Strongest Steel. It is book one of a four part series. Each book is stand-alone with HEA and revolves around an amazing group of characters that work in the Second Circle Tattoos studio. There are no cliffhangers, I promise you!
The incredibly talented Tanya Egan Gibson has professionally edited this book. Tanya also happens to be the author of How to Buy a Love of Reading. It would take more words than my blog allows to describe the many ways she helped me get this book from concept to finished product.
I am in the process of sending this to various companies and individuals so keep your fingers and toes and everything else you can spare, crossed for me. I know it will be tough but nothing worth having ever comes easy. If you are interested in reading the book in the capacity of agent, publisher or book reviewer, please send me your contact details through the 'Contact' page of this website.
I hope I get the opportunity to share the book in its published form with you soon.
P.s. If you need me, I'll be rubbing my lucky rabbit foot while hunting for four leaf clovers and upturned horseshoes!