Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Join the pre-party!

I'm over at Get Lost in a Story  today and tomorrow, in celebration of the release of DEADLY CONTACT (did you know the e-book and audio book are coming out on Friday, and the print version is coming out next Tuesday?).

Stop by to find out a little more about me, and leave a comment for your chance to win a copy of my book!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Quelle horreur!

There is candy in my house.  I need for there to not be candy in my house.
The chocolate.  It haunts me.
Is it Halloween yet?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Photo Friday - Traveling edition

If you follow me on Facebook, you already know that earlier this week, I flew to Canada for the Surrey International Writers Conference.  This is one of my favorite conferences, and it's always one of the highlights of my year!

Not only am I having a great time at the conference, but I really enjoyed the trip up here, as I was able to spend the entire flight reading.  I don't have as much free time as I'd like these days, which means I don't get to devote several hours at a time to reading.  A plane ride, however, seems tailor-made for a reading marathon, and is often one of my favorite parts of traveling as it gives me a chance to make a dent (however small) in Mount TBR.

One of the many foothills of Mount TBR...

What do you enjoy most about traveling?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Monday Motivation - Natural beauty

I went to the botanical garden with my brother this weekend, and was pleased and delighted to see so many things were still in bloom!  I took a ton of pictures, and I thought I'd share some of them with you today so you can start your week off by looking at something pretty.  Enjoy!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Celebrate the Small Things - Family edition

Another week has gone by, which means it's time to Celebrate the Small Things!  This fabulous blog hop is the brainchild of VikLit--be sure to stop by her blog for a full list of participating blogs!

This week, I'm celebrating the fact that my brother will be in town for the weekend. He lives in Nashville, so I don't get to see him that often, and it's always a treat when I do. Although I am excited for his visit, it means I had to clean out the guest bedroom.  The cats really consider it to be 'their' room, and I'm usually content to let them.  However, since actual humans will be occupying the space, I had to do a little tidying up.  The kitties are not pleased with my meddling, and are now studiously ignoring me.  I predict this will last until about 4:30 am, when their tummies start to rumble...

How was your week?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop!

It's time for another giveaway!  The Spooktacular Giveaway Hop is hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer--be sure to stop by her blog for a complete list of participants.

October is my favorite month, and in celebration, I have _tons_ of prizes for this hop, so make sure you scroll down to the end!  You are welcome to enter all or only some of the drawings--it's entirely up to you!

This month's giveaway is open to international readers, and will run until Thursday, October 31.  On Friday, November 1, I will post the names of the winners, so BE SURE TO CHECK BACK AND SEE IF YOU HAVE WON.  Due to the increased number of prizes for this giveaway, I won't have time to track you all down.

Without further ado, let's get to the good stuff!

2 copies of Deadly Contact by Lara Lacombe (note: I'll be happy to sign these for the winners!)
It's a race against time—and a fatal outbreak—in this thriller of a debut
In one passionate night Special Agent James Reynolds and scientist Kelly Jarvis went from friends to lovers. Then Kelly walked away with only an apology. Now James is charged with solving a bioterrorist attack—and Dr. Jarvis works at the suspected lab.
Is Kelly an accomplice or a victim? Just what are her secrets that drove her from James's bed? Soon one thing becomes clear: The ghosts of her past have nothing on the terrorists targeting her and Washington, D.C. Another threat bathes the city in red alert, and now there are lives at stake, in addition to hearts….
a Rafflecopter giveaway
1 copy of Frost Burned by Patricia Briggs:
Mercy Thompson returns in the seventh novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling series.
Mercy Thompson’s life has undergone a seismic change. Becoming the mate of Adam Hauptman—the charismatic Alpha of the local werewolf pack—has made her a stepmother to his daughter Jesse, a relationship that brings moments of blissful normalcy to Mercy’s life. But on the edges of humanity, what passes for a minor mishap on an ordinary day can turn into so much more…
After an accident in bumper-to-bumper traffic, Mercy and Jesse can’t reach Adam—or anyone else in the pack for that matter. They’ve all been abducted.
Through their mating bond, all Mercy knows is that Adam is angry and in pain. With the werewolves fighting a political battle to gain acceptance from the public, Mercy fears Adam’s disappearance may be related—and that he and the pack are in serious danger. Outclassed and on her own, Mercy may be forced to seek assistance from any ally she can get, no matter how unlikely.
a Rafflecopter giveaway 2 copies of The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance
24 new short stories from the hottest names
Fall in love with someone out of this world.
If love transcends all boundaries then paranormal romance is its logical conclusion. From the biggest names around, here are 24 tales to take you to another time and place.
Let Alyssa Day, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Cheyenne McCray, Jeaniene Frost, Ilona Andrews, Kelley Armstrong, Maria V. Snyder, Carrie Vaughn, Allyson James Marland and others show you powers beyond your wildest imaginings.
Within these pages mythical beasts, magical creatures of all shapes and sizes, heart-stoppingly handsome ghosts, angels, and mortals with extra-sensitive sensory perception play out the themes of extraordinary desires.
a Rafflecopter giveaway 1 copy of Lethal Rider by Larissa Ione
They're here.  They ride.
The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse
Born of a match between good and evil, four siblings stand between hell's minions and everything they want to destroy. They are the Lords of Deliverance, and they have the power to ward off Doomsday . . . or let it ride . . .
Thanatos, the most deadly Horseman of the Apocalypse, has endured thousands of years of celibacy to prevent the end of days. But just one night with the wickedly sexy Aegis Guardian, ReganCooper, shatters centuries of resolve. Yet their passion comes with a price. And Thanatos must face a truth more terrifying than an apocalypse-he's about to become a father.
Demon-slayer Regan Cooper never imagined herself the maternal type, but with the fate of the world hanging in the balance she had no choice but to seduce Thanatos and bear his child. Now, as the final battle draws closer and his rage at being betrayed is overshadowed by an undeniable passion for the mother of his child, Thanatos has a life-shattering realization: To save the world, he must sacrifice the only thing he's ever wanted-a family.
a Rafflecopter giveaway 1 copy of Wild Cat by Jennifer Ashley
Heartbroken from the death of her mate three years ago, Shifter Cassidy Warden is tracking down his mysterious killer-one who could bring danger to all Shifters. But Detective Diego Escobar rekindles the flames of her mating desire. And once the fires begin, nothing and no one can put them out...

a Rafflecopter giveaway 1 copy of Warrior Ascended by Addison Fox
First in the dark and sexy paranormal romance series
Starring the immortal warriors of the zodiac
Charming, proud, and impulsive, Leo Warrior Brody Talbot is fighting what may be his final battle. Enyo, the Goddess of War, plans to fulfill an ancient prophecy to destroy humanity by harnessing the dark power of the Summoning Stones of Egypt. There's only one person who knows enough about the stones to help Brody stop her-beautiful museum curator Ava Harrison.
Never in all his centuries has Brody met a woman who enthralls him like Ava. But, bound to protect her, he struggles to deny his passion as they are drawn into a dark and dangerous final reckoning between good and evil.

a Rafflecopter giveaway 1 copy of A Demon Does it Better by Linda Wisdom
After more than a century, Doctor Lili Carter, witch healer extraordinaire, has returned to San Francisco and taken a job at Crying Souls Hospital and Asylum, where something peculiar and wicked his happening. Patients are disappearing, and Lil wants to know why.

Lili finds herself undeniably attracted to perhaps the most mysterious patient of all—a demented but seriously sexy demon named Jared. What's behind the gorgeous chameleon demon's late-night escapades?
Before long, Lili and Jared are investigating each other—and creating a whole new kind of magic.
a Rafflecopter giveaway 1 copy of Sleeping with the Fishes by MaryJanice Davidson
Fred is not your ordinary mermaid. She's not blonde. She's not buxom. And she's definitely not perky. In fact, Fred can be downright cranky. And it doesn't help matters that her hair is blue.
While volunteering at the New England Aquarium, Fred learns that there are weird levels of toxins in the local seawater. A gorgeous marine biologist wants her help investigating. So does her merperson ruler, the High Prince of the Black Sea. You'd think it would be easy for a mermaid to get to the bottom of things. Think again.
a Rafflecopter giveaway 2 copies of Derik's Bane by MaryJanice Davidson
Derik's a werewolf with alpha issues--and a body to die for.

Sara is the personification of unspeakable evil--and smells like roses.

Now if they could just stop drooling over each other long enough to save the world.

a Rafflecopter giveaway 1 copy of Dark Hunger--graphic novel by Christine Feehan
The New York Times bestselling author's Carpathian classic goes Manga!
Christine Feehan has reinvented the vampire novel with her New York Times bestselling Carpathian series. Now she and Berkley take her "out-of-the- ordinary" (Booklist) in a thrilling new direction—and this time it's more graphic than ever.
Riordan is an immortal Carpathian male, trapped and caged, his honor compromised by his captors. They're in his mind. They're in his blood. And not one can withstand his desire for revenge.
Juliette is an activist devoted to liberating animals from a secret jungle lab. What she stumbles upon is a prisoner like no other. She will release him from his bonds. He will release her from her inhibitions.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Harlequin Spotlight on Romantic Suspense!

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Exciting news, gang!  This week, the Harlequin message board is running a spotlight on the Romantic Suspense line and on the Coltons of Wyoming series!

I encourage you all to stop by and say hi, and have fun asking the Romantic Suspense authors any questions that spring to mind--we'll all be dropping by during the week, and I know everyone is just as excited as I am to talk to Romantic Suspense readers!

Hope to see you there!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Celebrate the Small Things - TGIF edition!

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Sorry guys, but this week has really kicked my patootie.  I'm so tired, the only thing I can think to celebrate right now is the fact that it's over.  Tune in next week for a return to more cheerful topics, and a _huge_ giveaway!

Hope you've had a good week, and I hope you have a great weekend!

P.S. Don't forget to stop by the other blogs in this hop to celebrate with them!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Eating your vegetables

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Fellow writers, have you found that your taste in books has changed since you started writing?  Maybe there's a book that you would have enjoyed in your pre-writing days, but now you only see the flaws and you can't get past them. How do you react in that situation?

I ask because I've recently read a few books that didn't work for me.  There was nothing technically wrong with the books, but a few elements stood out in a bad way, and it kept me from enjoying the story. Specifically:

1) Character issues.  I didn't care for the way the heroine treated the hero, and I couldn't, for the life of me, figure out why he stayed with her.

2) Pacing.  This book started out fine, but the last 20% became a mad dash to the finish line, with the plot unfolding in increasingly ridiculous directions, almost as if the author realized they had 'x' number of scenes left to shove into 'y' number of words.

Even though I wasn't excited about these books, I stuck with it and finished them because I figured they would be good examples of what not to do.  It's like eating peas--I hate the way they taste, but I know they're good for me (or so I've been told--I have my suspicions on that front). Sometimes I can learn more reading a book I don't enjoy than I do from reading one I like.  Still, since I read for pleasure, I don't do this very often.

What about you?  Do you struggle through to the bitter end so you can use the book as a primer on what not to do, or do you drop a book that's not working for you because life is too short to read books you don't enjoy?

Monday, October 7, 2013

Arts and crafts...

So my Gentleman Friend called me last week and informed me that his work was holding a pumpkin decorating contest for Halloween.  I immediately informed him that we had to win (competitive much?) and we started brainstorming ideas.  He wanted to go with a dragon theme, in keeping with the fantastical nature of Halloween.  I was reluctant at first, but when I heard what he wanted to do, I jumped on board.

On Friday, we went shopping for supplies.  We spent about $30 (never mind the top prize is a $25 gift certificate to a certain coffee chain--it's all about the bragging rights, people!) and finalized the details of our plan.

Saturday we focused on construction.  We spent a few hours painting, gluing, and braiding pipe cleaners.  Then came the moment of truth as we put everything together....

Et voila!
So what do you think?  Personally, I think we have a decent shot at winning (or at the very least, placing in the contest) but I'm a little biased. Regardless, it was fun, and that's what counts!

How did you spend your weekend?

Monday Motivation - Public Service Announcement

Hey, you.  Yes, _you_.  Come over here--I've got something to say:

Have a great week!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Celebrate the Small Things - Hockey edition

Happy Friday, everyone!  Have you signed up for this hop yet?  It's a great way to express your gratitude for the little things that happen on a daily basis, and really, isn't that what happiness is all about?

This week, I'm celebrating the fact that hockey season has started!  Even though my teams lost their season openers, I have faith that they will do well this season, and I'm looking forward to watching as many games as I can.

Any other hockey fans out there?  What's your team?

What are you celebrating this week?

Photo Friday - Homework edition

Your assignment for the weekend...

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Say hi to Amara!

Just a quick note today to let you know that I'm interviewing my friend and fellow agency sister, Amara Royce, on Get Lost in a Story.  Go check out her responses, and be sure to comment for a chance to win a signed book!  If you're a fan of historical romance, you won't want to miss this!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

IWSG - October edition

It's the first Wednesday of October, which means it's time for another Insecure Writer's Support Group post.  For those of you who don't know, IWSG is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh, and it's a great opportunity to meet new people and find support.  Writing can be a lonely endeavor, and it's nice to know there are others out there who are facing some of the same issues and dilemmas.

This month, rather than airing more of my insecurities, I'm going to offer support and encouragement.  No matter what obstacles you're facing right now, know that you can overcome them.  Writing, like life, is all about perseverance.  Just keep putting one foot in front of the other (or one word or even letter after another) and you will get through to the other side.

It's not always easy, and there are times when it feels like you should give up.  If that's how you feel right now, give yourself a break.  There's no shame in stepping back and taking a breather--just know that you'll jump back in once you've recharged.

Finally, realize that you're not alone.  Perhaps you're the only writer you know in real life, and it feels like no one understands how much that form rejection letter hurts.  Does your family look at you funny when you do the happy dance because you've just solved a particularly thorny plot problem?  Do you feel like no one else in your life understands that working for 2 hours and writing 300 words can feel like more of an accomplishment than climbing a mountain?

We get it.  We really do.

This is such an amazing community of writers, but more than that, this is an amazing community of people who are always ready to lend a virtual shoulder to cry on, or to lead a cheer of celebration.  So use us.  Share your joys, your fears, your struggles, your triumphs.  Be there for others as they do the same.  And most importantly, just keep going!