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Saturday, May 31, 2014

Of an angel on Love Detail and a tattooed heroine

Hi, Shauna and welcome to Adventures in Authorland. Please get comfortable and tell us about ypur adventure.

Shauna Allem
How many books have you written? Which is your favourite?
I have written eight books total.  (Now, those are just the publishable ones, I have a few “practice” manuscripts hidden under my bed, LOL!)  This includes one novella, one short story, and six novels.  Two of those are under my YA persona, SC Montgomery. 

Asking me to choose my favourite is kind of like asking me to pick a favourite child!  I love them all for different reasons!  My Young Adult novels allow me to express the more emotional aspect to my voice, and my adult books let me be a bit more sexy and sassy, while still emotional.  But, if you’re gonna twist my arm, I suppose I’d choose Cupid’s Last Stand, which is the book I just completed and will release on June 24th.  It is the fourth and final Cupid Chronicles novel and I have grown such a soft spot for my hero, Tristan, because I fell in love with him when he was just a wounded teenager back in The Halo Effect.

Can you give us some details about your upcoming release/s?
Sure!  I’m here to share my last release, CHARLIE’S ANGEL, which I love.  (One of my writing friends talked me into a Cupid Chronicles Novella with one of the secondary characters from my first novel, Inked by an Angel…great idea!)  But, as I said before, my upcoming release is Cupid’s Last Stand, and it is my grand finale on the angel stories, at least for now, as I get ready to start a new series.  Like I said, it’s the story of the wounded boy, grown into a man, who finds out if your first love can be your last.

Who are some of your favourite authors?
Ooh, I love this question!  I have so many that I love!  But, my absolute favourites are: Kristan Higgins and Jill Shalvis for their ability to make me laugh, Selena Laurence for her awesome, sexy stories, Katy Evans because the Real series is one of my absolute favourites, and the wonderfully talented Lori Wilde.

Do you hear from readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I do hear from readers once in a while, and I try to be as interactive with them as I can.  It was so much fun (and a little strange, too) when I got my first fan mail.  People actually like my books as much as I do?  LOL!  But, overall, my fans and readers are the best!  They have really taken to my unique blend of contemporary romance and angels, especially my main cupid Michael.  Not to mention my tattooed hotties! 

What place inspires you the most?
I love just about any beach because the sound of the waves rushing is very soothing to me, but my all-time favourite place is the Texas Hill Country.  It’s so beautiful and peaceful for me, and I’ve based or visited there in several books.

Share three fun facts about you that most people don’t know.
1. I have a huge crush on Gerard Butler.  OK, maybe that’s not such a secret.  But, I also love the model Parker Hurley…it’s those tattoos!
2. I have four tattoos of my own, the first one being a birthday gift from my dad.  (We went together and he got his first, too!)
3. I am a nerd.  I graduated near the top ten percent of my high school class and I was Valedictorian of both my LVN and RN nursing programs, graduating Summa Cum Laude.
Shauna grew up an only child with two open and loving parents in Central Texas.  She’s married to her high school sweetheart and is the mother to three awesome teenagers, including one she’s about to send off to the Air Force.  She is the award-winning author of the Cupid Chronicles series, including the newly released Charlie’s Angel.  Shauna also writes emotional Contemporary YA novels as SC Montgomery, works as a freelance editor, and is personal assistant to two NYT Bestselling authors.  She loves all things sexy, sassy, and Gerard Butler.


Miserable and unsettled in his predictable, suit-and-tie existence, Charles Benson is finally waking up and realizing a few things. He hates what his life has become.
But instead of a change, he finds himself thrust deeper into more of the same . . . only worse.

Or is it?

Tattooed. Pierced. Outspoken. Fiercely sexy.
Jaded after being burned by an unreliable dreamer, Kami Monroe secretly craves the stability Charles represents, even as she rolls her eyes at his uptight monkey suits.  It wouldn’t be a problem except for the unexplainable and explosive chemistry sizzling between them and their heartbreaking baggage.

Add an angel to the mix getting one last shot at Love Detail, and you could have a match made in Heaven . . . if they’d just get the hell out of the way. 


“Do you ever relax?”
Charles glanced up. “Excuse me?”
Kami’s deep green eyes were scrunched in a frown. “Seriously. Your stress is vibing across the room. Are you always this uptight?”
His shoulders tensed. “I’m not uptight.”
Her gaze darted to his tie—a gift from Priscilla, which he hated—then back to his face. “Really? Could’ve fooled me.” She shifted and leaned back, exposing just a millimeter of her belly skin. “I’ll bet you even sleep in your dress shirts and ties. Or is it silk PJs for you?” She grinned.
He dropped the stack of receipts in his hand and sat forward. “Is that really what you think of me?”
Her eyes flared momentarily and his blood heated for the first time in weeks. Months. “Maybe.”
He couldn’t blame her. He presented a carefully crafted image to everyone. He had his whole life. It was what he’d been trained for since he was out of diapers. But Gran knew that artificial life was suffocating and unfulfilling. She’d always known. That’s why she’d gotten away from Texas and made a life in North Carolina with her simple home and her roses. Why hadn’t he seen it in time to let her know she was right?
Well, better late than never.
He tilted his head and studied the tattooed woman across from him now. Why did she goad him? Why did he let her?
Uptight. Hmph.
Slowly, he gripped the chair’s armrests and rose. He rolled back his shirt sleeves with casual nonchalance, first one, then the other, ever so slowly, as he rounded his desk.
She stayed silent, not moving, as she stared at him.
Finally, he faced her and leaned down until they were nearly nose to nose. Her eyes widened with some unknown emotion, her breath brushing across his flesh as her scent intoxicated him.
“Let me put you out of your misery, sweetheart . . .” 
He blinked, glanced down at her plump pink lips then back into her stunned eyes. “I sleep as naked as the day I was born.”


Shauna would love for you to visit her at her website and blog at:
You can also sign up for all the latest Shauna Allen news with her Angel Kisses Newsletter here!

And learn more about her YA persona at:

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Exploring Prince Charming and the perfect man

Hello Rebecca, and welcome to Adventures in Authorland. Please get comfortable and tell us about your adventure.
Rebecca Heflin

What inspired you to write your first book?
A midlife crisis. Crazy, huh? I was having a tough time adjusting to some recent changes in my life, and found myself in a very unhappy place. I'd always wanted to write, but never had the courage to do it. A friend strongly encouraged me to give it a try, thinking it might help me out of my funk. She was right. Once I'd finished the book, I set a goal. Get published before my 50th birthday, two years away. I succeeded in getting two books published by the age of 49.

What book are you reading now?
The Collector by Nora Roberts. Nora is my hero. I want to be just like her when I grow up. ( :

Who are some of your favorite authors?
Nora, as I said. But I also love Kristan Higgins, Jill Shalvis, Julie James, Lisa Kleypas, Jodi Thomas -- whew -- and many more. And of course, I can't forget Jane Austen.
Have you ever travelled to a place and come away with a story unexpectedly?
Oh yes. A trip to Oxford, England, inspired my first book, The Promise of Change. My second book, Rescuing Lacey, was inspired by a trip my husband and I took to Costa Rica. We recently took a trip to Sonoma. The story that trip inspired is in the que. Travel is my strongest inspiration.

Do you have any advice for new writers beginning their journey?
Write, write, write. Read, read, read. Read in the genre you'd like to write in. Learn from the masters of your genre. Take workshops, read books on craft, join writing groups and/or critique groups. Enter contests once you've written something to submit. I learned more from contest feedback, than from any other tool. And don't give up. If it's something  you really want to do, keep at it.

Have you ever cried during a movie? If yes, which one and why?
Oh my yes! Oodles of them. Terms of Endearment was probably the first one that made me cry. Another one that comes to mind is Hope Floats. My father had recently passed away, so the scene where she danced with her father turned on the waterworks. I sobbed like a baby during My Girl. I also cry during happy movies, often true stories, like The Blind Side. When I empathize with the characters, when their struggles become my struggles, my emotions take over.
BLURB: Dreams of Perfection

           What if perfection isn’t truly perfect?
           Best-selling romance writer, Darcy Butler, is holding out for perfection in the form of her own carefully-crafted heroes. Once blissfully engaged to be married, Darcy’s post-traumatic commitment phobia is depriving her of the very thing she wants most: her very own happily-ever-after. Now, here she is just six months shy of her thirtieth birthday, and not a Prince Charming in sight.
            Successful lawyer, Josh Ryan, is the boy-next-door with a soft spot for the less fortunate, and Darcy’s best friend without benefits. Darcy often comes to him lamenting her love-life, or the lack thereof, whereupon Josh patiently doles out his sage advice. Problem is Josh is in love with Darcy.
            But when Darcy finds herself looking into the handsome face of the man who graces the cover of her soon-to-be-released novel, she’s convinced her dreams of perfection have come true. Or have they?

Darcy Butler sat across the table from her blind date in a trendy new SoHo restaurant contemplating the fact that he was no Blake Garrett. Blake was . . . perfect. But why wouldn’t he be? After all, she’d created him.
Listening with half an ear, she nodded at something he said. Her date was handsome, polite, successful, charming even. He had good taste in food, wine, and from the looks of his expensive suit, clothes as well. But the comparisons continued, and she found him lacking at every turn. Robert, or Russell, or something that started with an ‘R’ asked her a question.
She could hear her mother’s well-deserved admonishment. He’s buying you dinner. The least you can do is remember his name.
Focus, Darcy.
“What do you like to do with your free time?” He gazed into her eyes, clearly trying to make a connection.
“I love going to Yankees’ games,” she said, excited that the season started that week.
“Baseball? Really?”
“Yeah, do you like baseball?” Her excitement rose at the prospect of finding a fellow baseball lover. Provided, of course, his loyalties didn’t run in the wrong direction.
“No. I find baseball boring. Too much standing around. I prefer boxing or hockey, something with a little action.”
Okay—first—baseball boring? Her excitement fell in proportion to the rise in her blood pressure. Second, boxing? Hockey? Where guys beat the crap out of each other? Did she want to date a man with a proclivity for violence?
All right, all right. Down, girl. Maybe she could educate him on the subtleties of baseball, the beauty of a breaking ball, the rarity of a no-hitter, the excitement of a bottom-of-the-ninth-down-by-three-full-count-with-two-outs-and-bases-loaded game. Help him see the light.
“Do you like boxing or hockey?” he continued.
“No. Sorry. I don’t.”
The clatter of silverware against china, the clink of glasses, and the low hum of conversation from other diners did nothing to diminish the uncomfortable silence that descended. “So”—he cleared his throat—“Laura tells me you’re a writer. What do you write, fiction, non-fiction? Murder mysteries? I love a good murder mystery.”
He signaled to the waiter for another gin and tonic. His third so far, but who’s counting.
“No, I write romance.” Was that an eye roll?
“Seriously?” he asked, his highball glass poised halfway to his mouth.
That was definitely an eyebrow lift, and not the wow-that-intrigues-me sort of lift, but the you-can’t-be-serious sort of lift. “Yes, really. I’m a New York Times and USA Today best-selling romance author,” she said, with no small amount of pride in her voice. “In fact, my latest book, The Doctor’s Dilemma, will be out in a few months.”
“That’s, um, great.”
“You seem surprised, and not pleasantly.” She tilted her head.
“Well, I mean,” he stammered, “Laura said you had a B.A. in Creative Writing from Columbia, and, well, using it to write books about half-naked men and heaving bosoms seems . . . a waste.” He made no further attempt to hide the disdain in his voice.
Her blood pressure soared, not to mention her temper. She set down her glass of Chardonnay so she could make her point without the risk of throwing the wine in his face, and propping her elbows on the table, leaned forward.
“Romance is serious business. Did you know that romantic fiction has the largest share of the U.S. consumer market? That romantic fiction generated over one billion, that’s billion with a ‘b,’ dollars in sales last year? That almost seventy-five million people read at least one romantic novel a year? And that includes men.”
He held up his hands in surrender. “Okay, okay. I get it. It’s a money thing.”
“No, it’s not a money thing,” she replied with a dash of snark. “I happen to love what I do. And so do my fans. All three hundred thousand of them.” Wow, I really need to get a grip. She’d caught the unwelcome attention of neighboring diners.
Mr. R.—and ‘R’ didn’t stand for ‘Right’—glanced around as if seeking the closest exit. His phone rang—one of those sultry sax tones—and from the look on his face, he welcomed the interruption. Excusing himself from the table, he stepped outside to take the call.
Darcy snatched up her phone and texted Laura, the instigator of this blind-date-gone-wrong.
He hates baseball. How could u?
Momentarily her phone buzzed.
How am I supposed to know he hates baseball? And who cares? He’s cute! And rich.
Darcy dropped her phone into her purse as Mr. R. approached the table.
“I’m sorry, I’ve got to go. My sister’s in labor. Twins.” He gave Darcy a lame smile.
She couldn’t tell if he was lying or not, but if he was, he got an ‘A’ for creativity. Either way, she didn’t care. The evening couldn’t end soon enough as far as she was concerned. “Well, congratulations.”
Darcy stood as he tossed a hundred dollar bill down on the table. “This should take care of it. I’m really sorry. Good luck with your new book.” And with that, he left.
Well, another one bites the dust. She sat back down with a sigh, before signaling the waiter. “I’ll have a Grey Goose Cosmo, and the Ahi tuna salad, with the dressing on the side. Oh, and the melting chocolate cake for dessert.” Since Mr. R. was buying, she might as well eat.

About Rebecca:
Rebecca Heflin is an award-winning author who has dreamed of writing romantic fiction since she was fifteen and her older sister snuck a copy of Kathleen Woodiwiss' Shanna to her and told her to read it. Rebecca writes women's fiction and contemporary romance. When not passionately pursuing her dream, Rebecca is busy with her day-job as a practicing attorney.
Rebecca is a member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Florida Romance Writers, RWA Contemporary Romance, and Florida Writers Association. She and her mountain-climbing husband live at sea level in sunny Florida.

Visit Rebecca at:


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Healing old wounds sets the scene for gripping tale

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

A Conversation With Laura Bainbridge

Meet Laura Bainbridge, heroine of Keeper of the Light, Book II of The Wild Geese Series. A romantic dreamer, she envisions a life very different than the one she’s always known. I was privileged to sit down in the cozy, fire lit parlor of Spirit Lighthouse, where her father is the lighthouse keeper, and ask her a few questions.

     What was it like growing up in a lighthouse on an island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean?
     Turtle Island is a world unto itself, just off the coast of New Brunswick, British North America. I loved growing up there. It’s a place where you know everyone, and everyone knows you. There are beaches and tidal pools. There are caves where my friend, Gil Forbes, ages his wonderful cheese. Of course, we’re a bit cut off from the world in winter, but in the summer months, a tender arrives every few weeks, bringing supplies and mail and the latest news from the mainland.
We even have our own ghost. Her name is Helena Bodewell, but we call her the Lady of Turtle Island. She was drowned many years ago, fleeing the island with her lover. It’s such a romantic tale. She roams the island on stormy nights, calling for her lost love. They say if Helena meets the gaze of a mortal, then that mortal is destined to fall in love.
      Romantic indeed. Your mother was English, and you have British roots. Have you visited England?
     Most of the inhabitants of Turtle Island are descended from the United Empire Loyalists, who refused to foreswear their loyalty to the Crown when America declared her independence. I’m very proud of those roots, and consider myself a loyal subject to Mother England.
When I was about five years old, my mother brought me to England to meet her family. I was enchanted. London was wonderful, full of bustle and excitement and color. Much as I love Turtle Island, there’s a great big wonderful world out there, and I want to experience all of it. I still have family there, including an aunt who promised to sponsor me a London season. Imagine…all the parties and balls, the hunts. And being presented to Queen Victoria! I can imagine nothing more exciting! Her gaze drops shyly to the gold ring adorning her finger. Well…almost nothing.
      I guess you don’t meet many strangers on your island.
     Actually, we have. We often rescue sailors blown off-course in a storm. My father, who is the lighthouse keeper, still corresponds with a Danish sailor whose ship ran aground on the island. She blushes, her lashes fluttering. And of course, Cathal washed ashore in that terrible storm last spring. And even though he had no memory of who he was, or how he got there, he changed my life forever.
      What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done to someone?
     I allowed the man I adore to make love to me. 
     Why was that so terrible?
     It was a terrible thing to do because I loved him…and because he loved me. But he didn’t know who he was then…didn’t know who I was… Her voice catches on a sob. Cathal is Irish, you see. He fled Ireland during the hunger, and the things he suffered… a hard shudder, and her eyes fill with tears… no child should have to live through such times. It changed him, you see, made him into a hard, bitter man. He wanted to set Ireland free, and he’d stop at almost nothing to achieve that aim. Whereas I…I was—am—descended from the Loyalists. English. Everything Cathal hated.
     I let him make love to me, and I made love to him, knowing he’d forgotten who he was, and I prayed his memory would never return. For if it didn’t, I thought, I could keep him. He’d be mine forever.
     But his memory did return, didn’t it?
     It did, and for a while, Cathal left me. I believe he hated me for a time—but then, love and hate are very often opposite ends of the same stick, aren’t they? We love each other for who were are, even as Cathal hated me for being English. A radiant smile suddenly lights her face. But we worked it out. We both had to come to terms with his past, and with the future I had planned.
     And do you believe you can live happily ever after, even with someone so very different from yourself?
     Oh, I do! Because underneath everything, we truly love each other. Cathal would do anything for me—even renounce his vendetta against the English. And I would do anything for him. I dreamed of a Season in London, but I gave up that dream for a lifetime on Turtle Island with Cathal and our children.
     Laura smiles, and her hand strays to caress her abdomen. Yes, children. Cathal doesn’t know yet, but my dear friend, Cally Forbes, just told me. I can’t wait to tell Cathal. He lost so many members of his family, both during the hunger and on the coffin ship that brought him to America. A single glistening tear of joy slides down her cheek. Now we’ll create our own family. And we will live happily ever after.

Cynthia Owens

Like the Wild Geese of Old Ireland, five boys grew to manhood despite hunger, war, and the mean streets of New York…

She was everything he despised…but he didn’t know it
Cathal Donnelly washed up on the shores of an Atlantic island one stormy night, with no memory of who he was or why he was there. But is his lovely rescuer his salvation…or his doom?

She dreamed of a very different life
Laura Bainbridge has spent her entire life on tiny Turtle Island, but she dreams of a Season in London and a presentation to the Queen. Can a handsome Irish stranger with a golden tongue and a disturbing past change her heart and convince her to stay?

As Cathal’s memory slowly returns, both he and Laura must come to grips with his painful past…and fight for a future free of hatred and loss.


Queenstown Harbor, Ireland, “Black ‘47”

     “Cathal, lad, look at me. Look at me now, and tell me why ye’re here.”
      Cathal Donnelly’s soul shrank as the priest grasped his chin between long, bony fingers and forced his reluctant gaze up to his face. Father O’Reilly’s black robe flapped and snapped in the chill spring wind that slashed Cathal’s own skin. The gulls screaming over the sea like banshees sent shivers down his spine. He caught his lower lip between his teeth, struggling to control his shameful tears. “We’re going to America, Father.”
      “And do ye know why ye must go to America?”
      “Because we’ve no food, Father.”
      “Ah, now that’s where ye’re wrong, lad.” Father O’Reilly glanced over to where Cathal’s family huddled together on the shore with hundreds of other emaciated refugees waiting to board the Sally Malone. Then he knelt before the ten-year-old boy, his dark-blue eyes blazing, his hands biting into his flesh. “Ye must go to America because the English decided ye’ve no food, Cathal. England starved ye, abused ye, and when ye dared to cry out for help, she turned blind eyes and deaf ears. Where has all the grain gone? And the cattle and the pigs and the sheep? All gone to England.” The priest waved a bony hand toward the quay, where huge, many-masted ships filled with food and livestock waited to sail. “All of it sent over the water so England may grow fat while Ireland starves. Do ye realize that, Cathal Donnelly? Do ye, lad?”
      “Aye, Father.” Cathal widened his eyes in awe, pride swelling his heart and puffing out his thin chest. No one had ever talked to him this way, as if he were grown up. As if he understood. He’d heard the whispers in the back room at Phelan’s pub, or when the men were digging the praties before they’d turned to black slime in the pit. But never had anyone told him why they must send their own food away. “I understand.”
      “Remember it then, lad. Remember it all—the hunger, the evictions, the cruelty. Remember it, and tell yer children, and in time their children. Will ye do that for me, Cathal Donnelly?”
      “Aye, Father, I will.”
      “The English drove ye from yer land.” Father O’Reilly’s voice shook with emotion. Tears sprang to his eyes and rolled down his cheeks, and Cathal’s heart twisted for the priest’s grief. “Don’t ever forget that, lad. Keep the memories alive, so that one day, please God, the wrongs done to our people will be righted.”
      Blinded by tears that had nothing to do with the sharp salt wind blowing off the sea, Cathal clenched his fists, his soul crying out for justice. For vengeance.
      “I promise, Father.”

     I believe I was destined to be interested in history. One of my distant ancestors, Thomas Aubert, reportedly sailed up the St. Lawrence River to discover Canada some 26 years before Jacques Cartier’s 1534 voyage. 
     Another relative was a 17th Century “King’s Girl,” one of a group of young unmarried girls sent to New France (now the province of  Quebec) as brides for the habitants (settlers) there.
      My passion for reading made me long to write books like the ones I enjoyed, and I tried penning sequels to my favorite Nancy Drew mysteries. Later, fancying myself a female version of Andrew Lloyd Weber, I drafted a musical set in Paris during WWII.
      A former journalist and lifelong Celtophile, I enjoyed a previous career as a reporter/editor for a small chain of community newspapers before returning to my first love, romantic fiction. My stories usually include an Irish setting, hero or heroine, and sometimes all three. I’m the author of The Claddagh Series, historical romances set in Ireland and beyond. The first three books in The Claddagh Series, In Sunshine or in Shadow, Coming Home, and Playing For Keeps, are all available from Highland Press. Deceptive Hearts and Keeper of the Light, the first two books in The Wild Geese Series,  are also available from Highland Press.
      I am a member of the Romance Writers of America, Hearts Through History Romance Writers, and Celtic Hearts Romance Writers. A lifelong resident of Montreal, Canada, I still live there with my own Celtic hero and our two teenaged children.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Final tale in seafaring trilogy

Welcome back, Lisa. Please tell is more about your adventure.

Lisa Belcastro
Thanks for having me back, Jean. You’ve asked some great questions!

Can you give us some details about your upcoming release/s?
     Shenandoah Dreams is coming out in July. Dreams is the final book in my Winds of Change trilogy. I had a wonderful time getting to know Melissa and Isaiah, and revisiting with Ben and Rebecca, as well as Adam, Jonah, Eli and Elizabeth. Melissa Smith is a twenty-first century sixth-grade teacher who finds herself transported back in time to 1770. When she first “wakes up,” Melissa believes she is dreaming. She knows, as any logical person does, that time travel is impossible. Therefore, everything and everyone she sees must be part of dream. As the hours turn into days, and the days into weeks, Melissa must face the reality that her dream is not a dream. What frightens her more than the time shift, are her feelings for Captain Isaiah Reed and her body’s reaction to his touch. Never before has she felt such an intense physical and emotional reaction to a man. But he thinks she’s crazy, and their relationship is anything but smooth sailing.

Do you belong to any non-writing organizations?
      I am a member and ambassador with TEAM413. Founded by Chris Gillespie, TEAM413 is a group of athletes numbering in the thousands who compete in a sport, mostly running, and hope to represent the hands and feet of Christ while doing so. We wear “the shirt.” Over ten years ago Chris took a marker and wrote on his Disney Marathon race shirt: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” So many people commented on his shirt, that Chris decided to run every race wearing Philippians 4:13. In time, people joined him and TEAM413 was born. Every weekend there is someone, usually many of us, racing and wearing a TEAM413 shirt. As I’m running, at my middle-of-the-pack pace, people will run along beside me and comment on the shirt, or chat for a few minutes, or talk for a couple of miles. The verse on the shirt is a conversation starter, whether it’s a simple, “I like your shirt” or a person needing a listening ear. My hope when I’m out there running as a member of TEAM413 is that I can be open to whatever and whomever God brings by my side.

Who are some of your favourite authors?
       I am an avid fan of Andy Andrews. I’ve read everything he’s written, and I own almost all his books. The Traveler’s Gift is my favorite of his novels. Though a fictional story, the lessons David Ponder learns as he travels through time are life lessons I want to put into practice every day. I love the idea of sitting down with King Solomon or Harry Truman or Abe Lincoln and gleaning wisdom from them.
       I love a good detective mystery. I own all the Spenser books written by the late Robert Parker. And I own all of Cynthia Riggs’ mysteries. Parker wrote incredible dialogue and great relationship scenes. Riggs’ protaganist, Victoria Trumbull, is in her nineties and full of vim and vigor. Very different characters, but each fun to read about.
       My favorite books are romances, and there are too many authors to list them all here. I can tell you I have every one of Karen Kingsbury’s books in the Baxter family series, over a dozen Denise Hunter books, Janette Oke’s Love Comes Softly series, as well as Nicolas Sparks, Jane Austen and dozens more.

If you could time travel back, or forward, for one day, where would it be and why?
            This is an easy question for me. My best friend died in an accident. I would travel back to that day, to lunch time, and change everything that happened after we parted company. I don’t know if I could re-write history, or change it, but I would if I could.

Share three fun facts about you that most people don’t know.
       I don’t know whether these are fun or funny, but here goes: About twenty years ago I had an irrational fear of vampires and bats. I hated going into the barn at night to check on the horses or walking outside after dark. I’d have to talk myself into it, wave my flashlight around, and then run like crazy if a bat flew overhead. I don’t remember what cured me, but one day the fear was gone. On a more practical note: when I go to the movies, I skip dinner (or lunch) and eat popcorn as my meal. It is one of my favorite dinners! I love to color. In college, when I was stressed, I would pull out one of my coloring books and my box of crayons and color away. Still works today!

If you could have any super hero power, what would it be?
      I would love to be able to read minds. Now, before anyone thinks I want to know what everyone is thinking for personal gain or to eavesdrop on private thoughts, I would want a filter put in place. I’m not interested in private thoughts, or secret tips for stock market (though I wouldn’t turn that down if freely offered), or even what my kids are doing when I can’t see them. What I would love to know is the feelings someone can’t express or fears expressing when I’m in a difficult relational situation. When Older Daughter calls and starts babbling on and on. I know she wants to talk about something, but I have no idea what it is or how to get her to speak what is on her mind. I’d love some insight in those moments. Or when my husband is angry or hurt about something, but isn’t telling me or even showing signs yet of being hurt, but a pain is building. I’d love to be able to apologize sooner rather than later, or address the issue before it builds to something larger. Or when Younger Daughter is quiet and replies to questions with one-word answers. I’d love to be able to reach inside her teenage hurt and fear, and talk with her.
   If reading minds wasn’t an option, I’d love to be able to fly. I’d travel the world.

Shenandoah Dreams

     “It’s just a dream. It’s just a dream,” Melissa Smith whispers as her eyes focus on the two men standing before her. She lives in the twenty-first century. She is chaperoning her sixth-grade students on an educational sailing trip. They are not visiting Plimoth Plantation, or the Boston Tea Party Museum, or the Concord Bridge reenactment. They are sailing over the waters of the Vineyard Sound around the island of Martha’s Vineyard. So the men before her, dressed as though they’ve stepped off the set of a movie on the American Revolutionary War, cannot possibly be real. She’s dreaming. She will wake up.
But can a dream man touch her and send bolts of electricity through her veins and ignite a fire in her heart the likes of which she’s never felt before? Can a dream man serve her food that tastes divine? Can a dream lasts for weeks on end?
And if she’s not dreaming, then she’s traveled back in time, which is impossible. But here she is, in 1770, uncertain how she arrived, how she’ll get home, and if her heart could bare to be parted from Captain Isaiah Reed. Only time will tell if Melissa is given a chance at love with Isaiah or swept forward once again to her previous life.

“Ye must be relieved the Townshend Act has been repealed.”
“Ay, Adam, we must all be grateful, though the cost was dear. Five men, five families. I fear the violence has only yet begun.”
In her sleep, Melissa tossed and turned. The bed had become increasingly uncomfortable throughout the night, and her dream was too vivid, the men too loud, and the tension too real. She refused to open her eyes. She would will herself back to sleep, think of something positive, and focus until her mind settled. She’d somehow gotten her back up against the wall, and the hard wood was not helping her relax.
Without peeking, she fanned the fingers of her left hand against the wall to help initiate the slide to the middle. The wood was rough. She gave a gentle shove to shift her weight to the center of the bunk. As she slid her hand along the board, a splinter pierced her skin. “Ouch!”
She snatched her hand away from the wall and shifted her weight, tucking her injured finger under her pillow. Now I discover the eighteenth-century connection! I’ll never get back to sleep.
“Did ye hear that? Something within moved about the cabin.”
Melissa froze. The voice sounded as though it was in her cabin. She waited; eyes squeezed shut. If some of the students were playing a prank, she would not give in so easily.
“There had best not be rats aboard.”
Rats? That did it. She opened her eyes, blinked a few times to adjust to the dim pre-dawn light, and found herself staring at a wall of wood. She glanced over her shoulder. More wood. What is going on?
The door latch clicked and the hinge squeaked as someone entered her cabin. “I shall see to it, Captain.”
Her sense of fun and games was over. This was not a good way to begin Monday. Whoever the two boys were, they were about to get into trouble. Big trouble. Melissa pushed hard on the board in front of her, and the wall gave way. Before she could stand or scream, she fell into a black hole.


Lisa Belcastro lives with her family on Martha’s Vineyard. She writes inspirational romances set on the Island and the surrounding waters.  She loves chocolate, reading, writing, running, working in her gardens, including weeding, and almost all outdoor activities -- as long as the temperature is above sixty degrees! Being on or near the water is pure joy for her, and she can’t wait for the warmer weather to arrive.
When she’s not at her desk working on her next novel or writing the cuisine column for Vineyard Style Magazine, Lisa is volunteering at her daughter’s school, serving in her church community, gardening, training for her first 50-mile road race, or walking the beach looking for sea glass.

Thanks for having me back again Jean. I’d love to hear from your readers what super power they would choose and why.

SHENANDOAH DREAMS comes out in July but the buy links for the first two books are:

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Time travel to the Regency period

Hi Emma.

Welcome to Adventures in Authorland. Please get comfortable and tell us about your adventure.
Emma Kaye 

Hi, Jean! Thanks for having me here today.

What book are you reading now?
I’m reading the first Sookie Stackhouse book, Dead Until Dark, by Charlaine Harris. I wasn’t overly thrilled with the TV series and only watched one or two episodes because it was a bit graphic for my tastes. But I can deal with graphic content in a book better than on film and since books are almost always better than the movie, I figured I’d give it a shot, though I waited until the series ended before getting into them. I’m not overly patient, so waiting for a new book in a series can drive me crazy. (I’m currently suffering from this ailment with my favorite — Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. Though the next is due out in June, yay!)
In which genre do you prefer to write and why?
Paranormal and/or Regency romance are my genres of choice. They’re what I love to read and write. Of course, any book is magical when it takes you out of your own world and into someone else’s, but paranormal has that little something extra — whether it’s time travel (my favorite!), witches, or something else — that forces the imagination into overdrive. And there’s just something about those Regency men that I find irresistible. I love it. It stands to reason that when my first story idea popped into my head it combined my two loves and I ended up writing a time travel set in the Regency period.
Who are some of your favourite authors?
That’s so hard to narrow down, but I’ll try. Diana Gabaldon, Johanna Lindsey, JK Rowling, Tom Clancy, Mercedes Lackey… I could go on, but I’ll stop there.
As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up? Writing, or something else?
I wanted to be a veterinarian until I learned they don’t just sit around their office petting the puppies and kittens all day. L Still, I stuck to the idea for a while. Then along came science. I didn’t mind it all that much, but I certainly didn’t love it enough to put the work into learning all I’d need to know. Combined with the not sitting around petting animals all day, I decided being a vet wasn’t for me. Instead, I have a dog and a cat, both long-haired and fluffy, who are quite happy to cuddle up for a good petting session.
What place inspires you the most?
There’s a sculpture garden in Hamilton, NJ called Grounds for Sculpture. I absolutely love it there. After walking around on a beautiful spring day, enjoying art and nature together, I always feel the urge to come home and create something of my own.
If you could time travel back, or forward, for one day, where would it be and why?
Since I love to write and read time travels, I’ve thought about this question a lot, but each time I do I come up with a different answer! There are just s

o many points in history I’d love to visit. My answer changes with my mood.
If I have one day only, I’d probably want to witness a specific event rather than trying to soak up what life was like in those days as I would if I had more time (I would need an extensive amount of time in Regency England, that’s for sure). In my current mood, I think I’d like to be there to witness the moon landing in July of 1969. Tomorrow, I’d probably say I want to spend a day at Woodstock or something, but for today, it’s the moon landing.
Time For Love = Blurb
Alexandra Turner will do anything to save her twin sister. Even when she’s transported back in time to Regency England. Rescuing her sister and finding her way back to her own time will take all her concentration. Falling in love is not an option.
With the death of his brother, Nicholas Somerville became the ninth Marquess of Oakleigh and must return to England to take his place in society. Part of his responsibility will be to find a wife. It never occurs to him he might actually discover a woman he could love—until he meets Alex on his voyage home.
Can Alex and Nicholas find a way to bridge the gap of time and circumstance? Can they overcome their fears to realize that true love transcends time? Or will a dark secret from Alex’s past rear up to separate them forever?

About Emma

Emma Kaye is married to her high school sweetheart and has two beautiful kids that she spends an insane amount of time driving around central New Jersey. Before ballet and tennis classes entered her life, she decided to try writing one of those romances she loved to read and discovered a new passion. She has been writing ever since. Add in a playful puppy and an extremely patient cat and she's living her own happily ever after while making her characters work hard to reach theirs.