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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Scandal and danger in Regency England


Hi Jane, and welcome. Please make yourself comfortable and tell us about your adventure.
Jane Beckenham

What inspired you to write your first book?

I actually played around for a while, then joined the online group Ozromance and met Ellen Ben-Sefer on line who wanted someone to critique her current book. Actually I had no idea what critiquing was but held my hand up.  Ellen and I had a lot in common, had both lived in Israel and travelled a lot.  We ended up writing 2 books together before we’d actually ever met.  That first book was Woman of Valor, which was subsequently published.

How many books have you written? Which is your favourite?

I’ve written about 15 books, not all published!  He’s The One is one of my favourites – it’s a contemporary and quite quirky.  But my next release. THE HIGHWAYMAN’S BRIDE (Entangled/Scandalous release 9 December) is a Regency and again a bit quirky in that the heroine is a highway robber.  Very adventurous for those times. 

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up? Writing, or something else?

Oh, I was going to be a queen, not even the princess, but a queen.  I suppose I can call myself the queen of the house, or housework!
 Have you ever travelled to a place and come away with a story unexpectedly?

Actually, yes.  I ‘travelled’ to hospital and ended up staying there for four weeks, and I remember watching the clouds pass across the sky from my bed. I wondered what it would be like travelling on a cloud, and maybe even falling off – that inspired To Kiss an Angel, a great holiday story for right now.

What historical person would you want to meet and why?

Cleopatra because of her strength in what must have really been a man’s world.  Imagine all that power, but then I’m not a great fan of bathing in ass’s milk – wonder if I’d come out smelling like a donkey?

If you could time travel back, or forward, for one day, where would it be and why?

To the court of Henry VIII to really see what he was like – a despot? Or just a randy bloke? Did those women marry him for love, or was it simply power or fear?  It would be nice to be a fly on the wall, as long as he didn’t swat me!

THE HIGHWAYMAN’S BRIDE –BLURB

England, 1813
Forced into a marriage . . .
Compelled by her uncle to marry a man who has a predilection for violence, Tess Stanhope resorts to a ploy from her favorite novels to fund an escape—highway robbery. But her attempt is botched by a maddening, handsome rogue named Aiden.
Driven by revenge . . .
Aiden Masters, the Earl of Charnley, is hell-bent on avenging his sister’s brutal treatment at the hands of the criminal Florian Nash. He single-mindedly seeks vengeance at the expense of all else—even by furtively roaming the highways at night.  
Blackmailed for love . . .
At a London party Tess meets up with Aiden once again and blackmails him...marry her or she’ll divulge to society his clandestine life as a highwayman. She desires a marriage in name only—but the more time they spend fighting their desire, the closer they come giving in.

Excerpt:
The Highwayman’s Bride
         
Her mind reeled at his closeness, a sensory world of heat and touch. Of sinful thoughts. Concentrate. Stick with the plan.
What plan? This had been a spur of the moment idea. Now she had to make it work.
A flurry of nerves and fear coiled tight in her gut. This man was big. Her gaze dropped to his hands. Big hands. Hands that could break her with one flick of his wrists.
Tess knew she tempted him, which was exactly as it needed to be if she were to succeed. Then he did something she hadn’t expected. He lifted a hand to her neck, scraping the back of his fingers along its curve. Her breath hitched for a heartbeat.
Do it, Tess. He’s your only hope.
“I desire the independence of a married woman,” she said in a rush.
His eyes darkened to the color of the deepest night sky. “And?”
The tip of her tongue slid along the rim of her mouth, and butterflies fluttered in her stomach. “Marry me, Aiden, and you’ll never see me again. Marry me, or I will announce to the world your penchant for robbery.”
His hand fell away, his expression instantly stony. “You are either very brave, Tess Stanhope, or extremely foolish.”
“I know what I want.”
“So do I.”
Then he kissed her—and that changed everything.

Pre order link  The Highwayman’s Bride

Bio

Multi-published author Jane Beckenham discovered dreams and hope, stories that inspired in her a love of romance and happy ever after.  Years later, after a blind date, Jane found her own true love and married him eleven months later.
Life has been a series of  ‘dreams’ for Jane.  Dreaming of learning to walk again after spending years in hospital. Dreaming of raising a family and subsequently flying to Russia to bring home her two adopted daughters. And of course, dreaming of writing.
Writing has become Jane’s addiction - and it sure beats housework.

Visit Jane’s web site www.janebeckenham.com
Email neiljane@ihug.co.nz   
Twitter @JaneBeckenham


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Careful. Your nurse could be a vampire


Hello R.E. and welcome to Adventures in Authorland. Please get comfortable and tell us about your adventure.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I’ve always been a storyteller. I’ve always had a vivid imagination. As a kid, I made up stories in my head. In high school I wrote poetry with the proper amount of angst. When my children were young, I made up stories to entertain them. It wasn’t until my children got older that I started putting words on paper.

What inspired you to write your first book?

I was a phlebotomist which means I spent all day sticking needles into patients’ veins for blood samples. A story started forming in my head. Of course dealing with blood led my thoughts to vampires. A vampire phlebotomist?

Can you give us some details about your upcoming release/s?

The second book in the Blautsauger family series, Vampire in the Scrying Glass is now in production. I hope to have it out in the next few months. Morgan and Rafe Blautsauger discover the path to love is never smooth. Magic, vampires and a demon stand in the way to happiness.

What historical person would you want to meet and why?

There are so many fascinating and important people in history that would be fascinating to meet. In no particular order: Jesus, Marc Antony, Cleopatra, Leonardo Da Vinci, Anne Boleyn, Jane Austin, Annie Oakley, Crazy Horse, Sacajawea, Jesse James, Butch Cassidy, Samuel Clemens, Buddha, Al Capone, Albert Einstein, Anne Frank, Mae West, Clark Gable, and John Lennon (to only name a few and, damn, I could go on and on). But in reality, I’d really just want to see and talk to my dad again. I need a hug.

If you could time travel back, or forward, for one day, where would it be and why?

I’d want to go forward a couple of centuries. I’d like to see what we make of ourselves. Hopefully, I’d find a world at peace, no poverty, no discrimination, and flying cars...oh, and transporter beams. I really hope there are transporter beams.

If you could have any super hero power, what would it be?

I’m torn between atmokinesis and precognition. Atmokinesis is the power to control the weather. Imagine being able to always create the perfect day. Wherever you were you could always have the right temperature, amount of breeze, rain, or sun. Using my power for good, I would rid the earth of natural disasters.

Hmm, on the other hand, I could also put Eeyore type thunderclouds over my archenemies heads. Wouldn’t that be a fitting end for the villains of the world? I would force them to forever walk around with soggy socks, wet shoes, and frizzy hair.

However, with precognition I could predict the future, sense danger, and save the day. Of course I would always use my power for good. Bwahahah

IT’S A WONDERFUL UNDEAD LIFE by R. E. Mullins

Blurb

It's been a rough couple of years for Cailey Kantor. Facing her first Christmas alone and bad financial news, she prays for an angel to fix her problems. Instead, a sadistic, sociopathic vampire, with the goal of starting a vampire war, attacks her and forces her to drink blood stolen from the Nosferatu Gabriel Blautsauger.
Gabe must complete Cailey's turning or she will die. In doing so he risks losing his yet unfound soulmate. But something about the lovely mortal speaks to his heart. Once her transformation is complete, he and Cailey find themselves embroiled in a battle that could cost them all they hold dear.
Faced with lies, abduction, and betrayal Cailey wonders if the vampire she is falling fangs over heart for is in it for love or if she's just a means to stop a war.

Excerpt

     Cailey’s scrub top was gone, exposing her lacy bra, and she was in the process of stepping out of the drawstring pants. She glanced up, her gaze a bit wild. “Hurry. Hurry. I think I might explode from all this energy inside me. I feel like a popcorn maker and all the kernels are popping at once. So much pressure in here.” She dropped a hand to the juncture of her thighs and pressed it against her.
     “Cailey?” Gabe’s tone was an octave higher than normal. When she straightened up, clad only in her underwear, he gulped for air. “What are you doing?”
     “Getting ready, of course.” Holding her wadded up pants in front of her, she frowned at him. “I thought you said you knew what you were doing.”
     “I thought I did…” His voice trailed off, his gaze locked on Cailey’s tight body. How had he missed just how beautiful she was? Hidden beneath the baggy scrubs was a living miracle. He took in the slight swell of flesh above the lucky bra cupping her breasts, and his fingers itched to run down the indentation of her waist.
     She dropped the pants to the floor. “Come on. Come on, Gabe the Babe. I know all about when you were at university and all the female vamps used to chase you around and gloat if they made time with you.”
     “Ahem.” Gabe realized he had his sister to thank for this new conundrum. More than a bit leery, he asked, “What else did Metta tell you?”
     “That we’re both kind of like virgins.”
     “I beg your pardon?”


Biography

R. E. Mullins was born and raised in Joplin, Missouri. She has also lived in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Mt. Clemens, Michigan, Springfield, Missouri and Colorado Springs, Colorado. Though she has loved each area, the Ozarks hold a special place in her heart. That is why she set her fictional town of Amber Heights there.

She worked as a Phlebotomist for ten years and assisted in a Continuing Education Course in Phlebotomy for several years. Now she is concentrating on writing.

Added Info:
            Here is a peek at the cover for the second book in the Blautsaugers of Amber Heights series. Vampire in the Scrying Glass is coming soon.

Excerpt: Rafe Blautsauger, vampire and enforcer, must put his feelings for the mortal Morgan Maquire aside. The Nosferatu council who employs Rafe strictly forbids their love. But he can't stay away from the beautiful woman who causes his blood to beat with new life. Yet, she hides a secret, one he must expose in order to protect her.

Morgan keeps her unique gift of magic under wraps due to a spell gone horribly wrong when she was young.  She is haunted by a nightmare where two malevolent glowing red eyes stalk her. Can she trust the arrogant but oh-so-handsome Rafe with her secret as well as her heart? Can he help her regain her power in time to save the world of the living and the undead?


Saturday, November 9, 2013

Neighbor put Debby's career on track

Hi Debby, and welcome. Please get comfortable and tell us about your adventure.
Debby Grahl

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I have to give a little background about myself to answer this question. I was born with a deteriorating eye disease called Retinitis Pigmentosa. This disease eventually causes either extremely low vision or blindness. I lost my ability to read print in my early twenties, but even when I could see print, reading was always difficult for me so as a child I entertained myself by making up my own stories. Becoming an author was always in the back of my mind, but until the development of computers and screen reading software writing was impossible for me.

What inspired you to write your first book?

I had an obnoxious neighbor who I thought would make the perfect murder victim. At the time my husband and I were living in a historic neighborhood which, except for my neighbor, I loved. I conjured up numerous plots in which he met his death. Each year we held our annual Christmas tour of historic homes and I decided to use this as the background for Decorated For Death and my neighbor’s demise.

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

I’ve written four books. Decorated for Death, a mystery cozy, was my first.  But it’s full of beginner writer mistakes, so I’m currently rewriting. The second, THE SILVER CRESCENT, scheduled for release on January 30, 2014, by The Writer’s Coffee Shop Publishing House, is a highly charged romance with a murder mystery and a treasure hunt, all helped along by a couple of Victorian ghosts. My third, Rue Toulouse, a contemporary romance set in New Orleans, will come out in January, 2015. My fourth, His Magic Touch, a work in progress, is a paranormal romance also set in New Orleans. Of these, Rue Toulouse is my favorite. My husband and I were in New Orleans celebrating our twentieth wedding anniversary when I had the idea for this story.

You’ve recently signed with a publisher. Tell us about your writing journey before and after this point.

Oh, my, this is a story in itself. It all began two years ago at a writers’ conference in New Orleans. I pitched Rue Toulouse to some editors and agents. One editor actually said he was more interested in paranormal, but send him the first three chapters and he’d take a look. When I got home, I decided that even though I hadn’t pitched it, he might like The Silver Crescent so I sent it instead. 

Two months later I got an email from him telling me he’d like to see the rest of the book. A few months after that I received the email every new writer prays for, the one offering you a contract. Needless to say, I was euphoric. I called and emailed every family member and friend I had telling them my news. We began editing the book and a quarter way through I was informed that due to financial difficulties they were no longer going to be able to publish my book. 

I have to give a little advice here. There’re numerous small publishers popping up all over, so make sure any you choose to submit to look like they will stay in business for a few years at least. As you can imagine I was devastated. So I had a good cry and submitted the MS once again. I got a contract offer with another small publisher whom I thought would stay around. Wrong! 

This time the book was ready to go to print when I was informed they were closing their doors. Once again, I had a good cry, drank a few glasses of wine, and submitted it once again. Now, they say the third time is the charm and it’s true! I’m now with a wonderful publisher, The Writer’s Coffee Shop. THE SILVER CRESCENT will be available in digital downloads from The Writer’s Coffee Shop website, on Kindle and Nook, and print on demand.

If you could time travel back, or forward, for one day, where would it be and why?

Since up to this point I haven’t written any historical, my answer may sound strange, but it would be Regency England. I love reading Johanna Lindsey, Stephanie Laurens, and Amanda Quick among others. I have an outline for a historical romance set in this time period which I hope to begin working on soon. 

Do you have any advice for new writers beginning their adventure?

The first thing I’d suggest is to take some online writing classes. There are many to choose from and they can be extremely beneficial. I’ve taken many myself and can see the difference in my writing from before the classes and afterward. Entering writing contests can also be helpful, but you have to remember these are subjective, and don’t get your feelings hurt or stop writing if you get a low score. I’ve won some contests and have had other entries ripped apart, but I never stopped trying. Joining a local writers’ group is a great way to meet fellow authors. They can be helpful with critiques and basic encouragement. I personally belong to four such groups including Hearts Through History.

THE SILVER CRESCENT blurb:

Betrayal, murder, and a fortune stolen a century ago from a Colorado silver mine send Elise Baxter to Cedar Bend on a quest to solve a family mystery—and to recover a treasure. Following clues from her great-great-grandmother’s diaries, Elise seeks out Max Holt and his restored Victorian inn.

An intense attraction between Max and Elise leads him to believe she may be the girl of his dreams. But when he discovers her true interest in him and his inn, memories of a past betrayal threaten to end their passionate relationship.

Max soon learns his inn has guests from the netherworld—a pair of ghosts who seek justice for a past murder, and an evil presence who will oppose them.

Guided by the ghosts, Max and Elise search the inn, but there are others driven by greed who will stop at nothing to unlock the mystery of the Silver Crescent.

THE SILVER CRESCENT excerpt from the Prologue:

To Cyrus’s disbelief, the old man lurched from his seat. Reaching across the desk, he grabbed Cyrus’s coat by the lapels, bringing their faces inches apart, and said, through gritted teeth, “I’ve waited twenty years for this moment and here you sit in your fancy house, with your fancy new name, behind your fancy desk, wearin’ your fancy clothes, and you ain’t got a clue who I am, you lyin’, cheatin’, murderin’, thievin’ bastard.”
Icy fingers of fear began to run up and down Cyrus’s spine; his gut clenched with every word the old man spoke. He fought to maintain a haughty expression as he stared into those hate-filled eyes.
“Release me, sir, and control yourself,” he said before Garrison spoke.
“Yes, my good man, this kind of behavior will gain you nothing. We’re all civilized men here. I’m sure, after hearing what you have to say, our good friend Cyrus will be more than happy to atone for his past sins and give you your due.”
“He damn well better.” The old man sneered as he retook his seat.
In a gruff voice, throat gone dry, Cyrus demanded, “For the last time, what is this about?”
Garrison paused to light his thin cigar. “Well, Cyrus, it’s about a Colorado silver mine and murder.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Debby Grahl lives on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, with her husband, David, and their cat, Tigger. Besides writing, she enjoys biking, walking on the beach and a glass of wine at sunset. Her favorite places to visit are New Orleans, New York City, Captiva Island in Florida, the Cotswolds of England, and her home state of Michigan. She is a history buff who also enjoys reading murder mysteries, time travel, and, of course, romance. Visually impaired since childhood by Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), she uses screen-reading software to research and write her books. Debby belongs to RWA, Florida Romance Writers, Hearts Throu
gh History, and Lowcountry Romance Writers.

WEBSITE:                                                       http://www.debbygrahl.com/

FACEBOOK, AUTHOR PAGE:                         https://www.facebook.com/deborahgrahl


Saturday, November 2, 2013

Jean builds cosy mysteries laced with humour

Hi, Jean, and welcome. Please get comfortable and tell us a little about your adventure.

What inspired you to write your first book?

A woman I knew who had ten children in eleven years and was then deserted by her husband.  For sheer drama—and tragedy—hers was a tale worth telling.  I did complete the book but never attempted to have it published.  The story would hurt too many people to be made public.  But writing it served as a form of catharsis for me and a learning experience as well.

What book are you reading now?

I’m currently reading Alice Munroe’s short story collection, Real Life.  They’re deceptively simple by a master of the embedded symbol.  I highly recommend the book by our most recent Nobel laureate. Each story really makes you think, so after you read one, you sit back and say, “Now what was that all about.”  And with a little thought, you discover the gem hidden inside that fluid prose.  Munroe is a gifted storyteller.

How many books have you written?  Which is your favourite?

I have to count.  Let’s see.  Including that early domestic tragedy, twelve.  Seven, counting my current WIP, have been accepted for publication, and that makes me happy.

Can you give us some details about your upcoming release?

On January 4, 2014, Rooms To Die For, the fourth book in my Murders by Design Mystery Series, will be released by Carina Press and available through Amazon.com.  Rooms to Die For is a cozy mystery laced with humor.  As an interior designer with a struggling business and a great love life, Deva Dunne keeps getting into scrapes that put her in grave danger. (No pun intended!)  This drives Lt. Rossi, her detective lover crazy, but as every designer knows, the devil’s in the details, and these pesky details have a habit of bringing Deva face-to-face with killers.

Do you have any advice for new writers beginning their adventure?

Ah, yes.  This question is asked of every writer:  Bad news first:  Sorry, but there is no muse who will wave a magic wand over you as you write.  Now for the good news:  If you keep on writing, every day, every day, you will polish your craft and with that have an excellent chance of becoming a published writer.  It’s a long and difficult road, I know, but it can be done.  Look at me, Ma!

Share three fun facts about you that most people don’t know.

  1. I weigh the same now as I did when I was married.  It just looks different.
  2. Today is my wedding anniversary.  Many happy years spent with Big John.
  3. Our son was born on our fifth wedding anniversary.  Happy birthday, Chris!
 
BLURB of KILLER KITCHENS

When a restaurant gas oven explodes in Killer Kitchens, killing two men, destroying the chef’s livelihood and tossing heroine Deva Dunne out onto the sidewalk, you know something’s gone terribly wrong with Deva’s first commercial project.  Actually it’s been blown all to, well—smithereens.  The reason?  An accidental propane leak?  Or was arson the cause?  Either way, just because Dynamite Shrimp was on the menu, did the place have to explode?  For an excerpt, take a peek at: www.jeanharrington.com/