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01-24 Debut Romance Author Fiola Faelen

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Debut Author Fiola Faelan: Holiday Hearts Awakening

I’ve always loved reading and writing, and cut my teeth on books such as The Forest of Mystery, Edgar Allen Poe, Robin Hood, and Nancy Drew. I grew up a devout tomboy, back when Silicon Valley wasn’t even a gleam in San Jose’s eyes. I’m not as agile as I once was, but can still cut a rug, in person and in my books.

I finally sat my behind down several years ago and got serious about writing. I made all the newbie mistakes, but with the help of the members of the Rose City Romance Writers and some gentle critiques, I like to think I make those mistakes only occasionally, now.

Reading—and writing—is in the blood it seems—and certainly in mine! Some are rabid about both, others enjoy a good book but are able to put it down with ease and move on to the next thing. For me, I'd say I fit into the rabid slot in both reading and writing.

If I'm not writing, I want to be reading, and vice versa. There are so many of us out there. Writers who can look at a can of corn and immediately come up with a scene for a book, or an entire story—all because of that can of corn.

We're the ones you may overhear at a restaurant mulling the best way to do away with someone. Where to bury the body. Or the most unusual place to get frisky with that hero or heroine.


On any given day, I can be found writing, playing practical jokes on friends and family, laughing, and thinking up outlandish plots in my head. I love life, living with my son and marvelous daughter-in-law in beautiful Portland, Oregon, along with Nudge the most affectionate cat.

FIOLA FAELAN
Whether you're a writer who's obsessed with the whereabouts of your muse, every minute of every day, or a reader who doesn't mind putting down that book to take a walk or a nap, I hope you'll check in with me often. I hope you lose yourself in a book, whether mine or another’s, when you do pick it up again.



I would love to connect with you, and possibly entertain you, either between the pages of my books or on my website. Please visit—often!

Website:          http://fiolafaelan.com

EXCERPT: HOLIDAY HEARTS AWAKENING

Three painful years after the destruction of her family and determined to spend this Christmas as alone as ever, Natalie is unprepared for the sensuous campaign against her senses from her new hunk of a neighbor. Or for her body’s traitorous attraction.
Zach had sworn off relationships, concentrating instead on work and being a single dad to his young daughter. After almost losing her years ago, every day was about keeping her safe.  Little did he know the holidays would bring not only visions of sugar plums, but also a stubborn too-sexy neighbor in need. His protective instincts roar to the front, as does his libido and the heart he thought he’d locked away.
Little do they know, if they let down their guard, Santa will deliver not only goodies under the tree, but sometimes hearts filled with love.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Hearing the Waterfall, Seeing Possibilities

Hi, I’m Linda Lovely. I write a mix of romantic suspense/thrillers/mysteries. My four published novels (available Kindle, paperback and audiobook) are all set present day, but I’m very excited about my just-completed manuscript set in 1938. I’m also well into a new cozy mystery series—spiced with romance, naturally. To learn more about me and my books, please visit my website: www.lindalovely.com.

The week after Christmas our South Carolina home filled with family. A dozen of us to be exact, ranging in age from nine to seventy-three. Four of our guests traveled from Utah, two more made the trek from Iowa.

I’m sure they hoped for a warm, sunny holiday. During their stay, they got one prize day—warm enough for a boat ride and kayaking. The rest of the week was pretty dreary—fog, drizzle and/or chilly temperatures. Yet we didn’t let the weather put us in a funk. (Stay with me, this does relate to the New Year and writing.)
Hearing the Waterfall...

On yucky days we held a bowling tournament, hiked through the fog to “hear” a waterfall, bet virtual fortunes in spirited poker games—some with imaginative wild card combos, and showed off our general lack of artistic skill in a multi-generational game of Pictionary. I might add the seniors got drubbed, but the highlight was the nine-year-old’s excellent attempt to draw “booby trap.” 

Unfortunately his stick figure’s “boobies” were mistaken for goiters.

We drank a little. Ate a lot. Sneezed some. And laughed. We enjoyed each moment and each other.

So how does this apply to the New Year and writing?  I made only one New Year’s resolution—to try to enjoy the moment, the day, and find something to laugh about every day. What does that mean to a writer? 

Here’s what I hope:
·            I’ll say “no” to more activities that take me away from the activities and people I truly enjoy—especially writing and spending quality time with family, friends, fellow writers.
·            I’ll try to write some every day. But if the sun’s shining for the first time in a week, I won’t become so obsessed that I don’t take a day off and bask in the sunbeams.
·            I’ll remind myself that wrinkles and gray hair don’t mean my imagination can’t run as wild and free as a nine-year-old’s.
·            I’ll try to use all my senses in my writing, having realized there’s something magical about hearing a waterfall you can’t see.
·            I’ll read more books for pure enjoyment, and I won’t feel guilty if I stop reading a book I don’t like.
·            I will not let negative thoughts about manuscript rejections or book sales suck the joy out of writing the next book.


Seeing  the waterfall with the help of digital magic...

Happy New Year! I hope it will be a great one for all of us.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

MY GOAL FOR 2015 - INSPIRATION - MARGARET TANNER


WRITE, WRITE WRITE.,  MARGARENT TANNER'S GOAL FOR 2015

My resolution for 2015 is to write more. I know I have said this before, but I feel that I need to up the ante so to speak and write, write, write.

We had a quiet Christmas, my 2 granddaughters were overseas visiting their other grandmother, so the number around our Christmas lunch table was only four.

I didn’t even bother to farewell 2014 or herald the birth of 2015, although illegal fireworks going off in the neighborhood from dusk until dawn was very annoying. The barking of terrified dogs did not help either. As I lay in bed, wondering why I bothered to even try to sleep with so much noise going on, I made my New Year resolution. I was going to be inspired. To finish my WIP and start on something new. It must have worked as I have just sent off my latest novel to my editor, the first of several I hope.

So how can I get this elusive inspiration for my work in progress, or for that matter, all my novels? Fortunately for me, I write historical romance, so delving into my family tree is a great resource for me.

Like the heroines in my novels, my forebears left their native shores in sailing ships to forge a new life in the untamed frontiers of colonial Australia. They battled bushfires, hardship and the tyranny of distance in an inhospitable and savage land, where only the tough and resilient would survive. They not only survived but prospered in ways that would not have been possible for them had they stayed in England, Ireland and Scotland.

I admire heroines who are resourceful, not afraid to fight for her family and the man she loves. I want my readers to be cheering for her, willing her to obtain her goals, to overcome the obstacles put in her way by rugged frontier men who think they only want a wife to beget sons.  A chance for revenge.  To consolidate their fortunes. That love is for fools.  Oh, the victory for the reader when these tough, ruthless men succumb to the heroine’s bravery and beauty and are prepared to risk all, even their lives, to save her.

This is why I write historical romance, and will continue to do so in 2015. I hope you will follow me on this journey. My goal is four novels/novellas, but if I get sufficiently inspired, maybe five.

Dangerous Birthright will be my first novel for 2015. It is the sequel to Falsely Accused. Both books are published by Books We Love.

FALSELY ACCUSED: 1820's England. Robbed of his birthright and falsely accused of murder, American Jake Smith, is exiled to the penal colony of Australia.
 
 
 
 
 
DANGEROUS BIRTHRIGHT: The sequel to Falsely Accused - Due out February/March 2015. 
Can an English aristocrat go against society and marry the daughter of convicts?


 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

New Year's Resolutions

by Vivienne Lorret

I’m a person who likes to make resolutions. Each New Year, I write them down and number them. Once, I even alphabetized them.

Not to toot my own horn, but I’m a very dedicated January-resolutionarian.

By February, the list has suffered a few modifications, nips and tucks here and there. Maybe an entire year without chocolate wasn’t such a good idea, after all.

Yet, when March hits, major reconstruction happens. The list takes on a new form. Half of it turns into a grocery list.

Tea, milk, chocolate…

A new story idea-scribble climbs the right margin.

Rake meets spunky heroine—she kills his dog. Hmm…

Origami becomes an option.

In April… Well, we won’t talk about April.

But that was before I learned how to dream big, and still reach my goals.

It happened when I started to write down the things I was planning to do anyway. Changing the words Lose twenty pounds to Eat healthier, smaller portions works much better.

Check!

Altering the words Write six books this year to Write every day.

Check!

And then adding things like Drink more tea and Smile more are not only easy, but a worthwhile investment in myself. Because, as you might have figured out, Smile more is also code for Go ahead and eat chocolate.

Happy New Year!

~USA TODAY bestselling author Vivienne Lorret loves romance novels, her pink laptop, her husband, and her two sons (not necessarily in that order ... but there are days). Transforming copious amounts of tea into words, she is proud to be an Avon Impulse author of works including: Tempting Mr. Weatherstone, The Wallflower Wedding Series, and The Rakes of Fallow Hall Series. For more on her upcoming novels, visit her at www.vivlorret.net

Monday, January 19, 2015

Hello from the newest Genre-ista!



Hello and a Happy New Year to everyone! I’m Nadine Mutas, and I’m thrilled to be joining the Genre-istas and blogging about all things books, reading, writing, and life around these favorite subjects of mine.   

I write paranormal romances filled with magic, witches, demons, and all things that go bump in the night. Because – let’s face it – I never really grew up and love stories with a little extra something to spice up reality. I mourn the fact that I have to live in a world without magic, so I compensate by spinning tales and building worlds with endless possibilities and intriguing depths of powers. Every story I’ve ever thought up had a paranormal twist, and to be quite honest, I probably wouldn’t even know how to write a story without magic in it. Paranormal romance is also the genre I love reading the most, which is not to say I don’t enjoy the occasional historical, erotic romance, or urban fantasy.

A little background info about me: Being a German native, I moved to the United States with my husband and my two cats in 2012, and now live in Oregon, where I’m enjoying the mild climate and even the rain (which really isn’t as perpetual as reports led me to believe before I came here. Seriously, it’s not worse than Berlin. And you get cold winters and snow in addition to rain over there, which is just mean. I’d take rain over snow any day of the year). I’ve been thinking up stories and collecting ideas since I could speak, but I only started writing with a professional goal in mind three years ago.

The first novel I ever finished will probably always remain safely tucked away in my drawer (I’ve read through it again recently – some major facepalming ensued…), but the second book I completed went on to win a bunch of writing awards and garnered recognition from industry folks. It’s the start of a series (Blood & Magic) set in contemporary Portland, Oregon, where demons and witches clash – and fall in love – amid a changing supernatural landscape.

My goals for 2015 are to finish writing the second book in my Blood & Magic series, and then publish Book 1 and Book 2, and possibly get started with writing the third. If at all possible, I’d also like to squeeze in a novella or two. Or I might just admit that I’m delusional thinking I can achieve these goals with a brand-spanking new baby at home (born in November 2014). Then again, if you don’t set goals that challenge you, you’ll never grow, right?

So, more realistically speaking, I will see how much writing and publishing I will get done while multitasking around an infant, and I’d love to share this journey with you. Thanks in advance for reading my posts and commenting.

As John Lennon put it so succinctly: Life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans. Looking back at 2014, what were some of the moments where life happened and made achieving your goals harder than you thought?

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Debut Author Carolyn LaRoche - Witness Protection

Before I begin, let me say thank you to my hosts for having me here today. This is a very exciting time for me and I love being able to share it with all of you.

Witness Protection is the first book in the Defenders of Love series. The series is based on the James men, each one a member of some facet of law enforcement. 

Logan James, the hero of Witness Protection, is a cop sent undercover in an all girl's school to break up a drug ring. Instead he meets Angelina Ferrara, former NYPD cop turned protected witness who has become the target of a nasty assassin. With the help of the James boys and the clever Aunt Clara, Angelina learns to trust…and love…again.

(I hope you'll read the Excerpt at the end of my post!)

Writing Witness Protection was originally something I did to pass the late night hours when my husband was at work. He has the sort of job that keeps a wife up at night worrying about his safety. I channeled that worry into something productive—writing a book. My handsome husband served as the inspiration for the strong, resourceful Logan James. I have always been a sucker for a man in uniform so it only made sense that my hero on paper would be based on one in real life. With my background in forensic science, love of a good crime story and need for every story to have a happy ending, writing romantic mysteries just worked. When the first draft of Witness Protection was complete I sent it to a friend that likes to read for me and a day later, she informed me "you better do something with this."

Thankfully I listened to her. Since the release of Witness Protection at the end of November, I have been asked the question "when do you find time to write?" quite a bit. I work full time as a high school science teacher in a special program for accelerated students pursuing careers in the sciences or medical fields. Teaching electives such as forensic science offers a ton of inspiration. I am always reading up on cases and researching techniques for my class. A lot of that information is filed away for my books as well so research time is cut in half. Of course, the hubby still works that night shift and I am not much of a sleeper so that helps as well.

I suppose the better question these days is really "how do I find time for things like laundry, dishes and grocery shopping?" It is not uncommon for my boys and me to dress from the dryer on a school day. I buy everything in bulk to minimize trips to the store and thank goodness I have a twelve year old who is great at unloading the dishwasher!


Witness Protection is currently available in ebook and will be released as a paperback on January 20, 2015. The second book in the series, Homeland Security, should be available later this year. I also have another book being released in early spring titled Undercover in Six Inch Stilettos, book one in a new series called the Secret Lives of Police Wives. I hope that you will join me when each of them become available. In the meantime, feel free to stop by my Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolynLaRoche?ref=hl or my blog http://carolynlarocheauthor.blogspot.com/ anytime to say hello and see what's happening my world of mystery and romance.

CAROLYN LAROCHE
Carolyn LaRoche grew up in snow country but fled the cold and ice several years ago. She now lives near the beach with her husband, their two boys, two finicky cats and one old dog. When she is not at the baseball field cheering on big hits and home runs, she is busy teaching science to unwilling teenagers.  She is also co-author of the non-fiction book The Crazy Lives of Police Wives.

EXCERPT - WITNESS PROTECTION
"This place belongs to your aunt?" Angelina said in disbelief.
"Sure does. After my uncle died, she inherited a tidy sum of family money that she held onto. Once the three of us boys were out of school and out on our own, she moved to this mountain. You are now looking at a large chunk of that inheritance."
 Angelina opened the door of the Jeep and gingerly stepped down from the cab. Logan made a note to find her some shoes as soon as they were settled. Aunt Clara had to have something she could use.
Suddenly the door to the cabin flew open. A little woman with a very big rifle jumped through the door yelling at the top of her lungs. "Get down on the ground! I ain't afraid to use this thing! Get down!"
The woman waved the gun wildly in the air. Angelina dropped to her knees even as Logan took a step forward, laughing.
 "Aunt Clara! It's me, Logan!"
The little woman stopped yelling the instant she heard Logan's voice. With a hand held above her eyes to block out what little sun made its way through the trees, she called out, "Logan? What are you doing here?"
"Where are your glasses, Aunt Clara?" He was still laughing as he crossed the clearing between them and grabbed his slight-figured aunt up in a bear hug.
"Well, you know I got no patience for those things, boy. They just keep sliding down off my nose."
 Logan laughed again. His aunt was his favorite person in the world. After the death of his mother, she was the only adult left in his life he felt that he could trust. He still felt that way.
"If you had them on you might not have come so close to shooting us!" He gestured to Angelina who was pulling herself up off the ground, disdain clouding her features. Logan frowned. The last twenty-four hours had been more of a trial for her than any one human being should have to go through. It was time to get her settled and figure out a way to get her out of this mess without endangering her life any further.
 Walking back to where Angelina leaned against the Jeep watching them warily, Logan took her hand and gently led her to the cabin steps where his aunt stood squinting at them.
 "Angelina Ferrara, meet my aunt, Clara James"
 "Nice to meet you, Ms. James." Angelina reached out to shake the older woman's hand, but Clara grabbed her up in the same sort of bear hug he'd greeted his aunt with. Logan watched with amusement.
"Oh, posh! Call me Clara, will you! No formalities around this here place." She gestured toward the cabin behind her. "Come, let's get you inside, dear. Whatever happened to your shoes?" Clara gave her the once over from head to toe. "Hmmm...I may not have my glasses on, Logan, but isn't that the shirt I gave you for your birthday? I definitely think we all need to sit down with some hot breakfast and have a long talk."
Aunt Clara had always been insightful. Of course, him showing up with a woman she knew nothing of wearing his clothes and shoeless probably would have set off warning bells in anyone's head, no matter how clear their vision.
"Breakfast sounds great, Aunt Clara." A loud rumble sounded from Angelina's stomach making Logan laugh. She flushed in embarrassment and stared at the ground. "I think Angelina might be a bit on the hungry side as well."
 They all laughed and Angelina seemed to relax considerably. Clara linked their arms and led her into the house. "Come along, dear, let me show you where you can get cleaned up. I bet I have something that might fit you a little better than my nephew's oversized lumberjack clothes."
Angelina glanced back at Logan, questions in her eyes. He nodded at her. "Go ahead, it's okay. I'm going to head to my room and clean up too. I'll see you at breakfast. She's perfectly safe, I promise."
Clara laughed as she led Angelina down a hall in the opposite direction from where Logan went. "Perfectly safe! That nephew of mine is such a joker!"

Friday, January 16, 2015

New Year, New Hopes and Learning New Things

Hi, I'm Pippa Jay, author of scifi and the supernatural with a romantic soul. This month's topics is all about goals, new directions and plans, which fits in very well with my intentions for 2015.

2014 went from awful to awesome for me, both in terms of my publishing and private life. At the start of the year I had one publisher close leaving two unpublished books homeless, had my first publisher bought out by another and my debut novel there removed from retail sites, and had to take the decision not to submit further to my remaining publisher due to the introduction of an exclusivity clause. I was left with one novel and three shorts available, and two of them were freebies. I felt like giving up the idea of being a published author and quitting the whole business altogether.



Well, I can look back on that collection of disasters with a smile now. In the last six months I've had five new releases. Five! I currently have ten titles for sale, eleven listed on Goodreads. But even with that, my sales are...disappointing to say the least. I've bemoaned that fact, and wrung my hands over how I suck at marketing. Since my reviews are generally good and I've a collection of nice, shiny awards - my YA scifi novel Gethyon became a finalist in the SF category of the EPIC ebook Awards just last month - it doesn't seem to be down to having terrible books. I knew early on that I wrote in a niche genre, whether it's straight SF or my scifi romance titles. So I decided the time has come to stop saying I suck at marketing and actually do something about it.


Marketing is not something I enjoy doing in general, but it needs to be done. January is the only month I don't have a book release (I have print releases February and March, another new title in April, and I'm looking at re-releasing my debut novel in May), so I set it aside to research marketing. I have a few books recommended to me, plus several blog posts on the topic bookmarked to read. My main publisher took a class on Amazon sales and filed some documents in our author group for us to use. I'm also doing a workshop with FFnP (the Futuristic, Fantasy and Paranormal chapter of RWA) on book launches - fortuitous as I really want to re-launch my debut novel Keir in style (I'm currently halfway through edits and just finalized the cover art, squee!), and it's the first of a planned five book series . And after seeing much debate for and against KU, I decided to give it a shot with my three short stories, since what few sales of them I get are all on Amazon anyway. Really, I can't be any worse off by giving it a try, and it may well be a boost to my longer titles all with publishers. I have a course on Moons starting in February - okay, that's not marketing but it satisfies the scientific research part of my persona. >.<

So the New Year is the start of me learning and trying new things, probably more so than any year so far. My only problem with it is right now I'm not finding the time to write. I still have enough material to release another three or four self published titles of my own over the next year, but nothing to submit to my publisher for the foreseeable future. My hope is that, after May, I'll be able to devote myself to simply writing after almost non-stop editing, touring and cover reveals since July 2014.

And if you're interested in seeing what's coming next from me, you can sign up to my newsletter here. I have four upcoming releases already, and the prettiest cover reveal you've ever seen scheduled here for the 28th January (pssst, newsletter subscribers get to see it a day before everyone else). ;)

2014 ended up being one of my most awesome years in publishing, and I have high expectations for 2015. May the New Year bring you all you hope for!