Sunday, December 20, 2015

A Very Authorly Holiday, or, The Card Quandary

For many of us, the holidays are joyful events, filled with friendly board games, embarrassing
It's not just the pressure of genius that hinders my writing of
holiday cards. Beneath Bast, my holiday helper,
lies 
a completed card awaiting a label. Sigh.
reminiscences, overdrawn bank accounts, and far too much cranberry sauce.

And holiday cards – we can never forget the holiday cards.

My fiancée is Jewish, I’m Agnostic, and our friends and family range from Wiccan to Atheist to Pentecostal. We’re an eclectic group, the people for whom folks popularized the bland, safe “happy holidays.” As a result, my fiancée and I purchased a variety of holiday cards: some celebrating Solstice, some the new year, some Hanukkah, and some just gratuitously representing adorable furry friends. One of my favorites features a picture of a certain, gentle giant of an aquatic mammal wishing “Happy holidays for all of humanatee!”

I love sending out holiday cards. I write a different message in each one, decorate the envelope with sparkly stickers (How does a glittery butterfly represent the holidays? Who cares?), and match each stamp with the addressee it best represents. I take my annual holiday card duty very seriously.

Only one aspect of this ritual can dim its holiday brilliance: Penning that darn personalized message. This scenario likely exists only in my neurotic, authorly brain, but I vividly imagine each recipient drawing a sparkly envelope from their mailbox, tearing it open with a zeal irrespective of potential papercuts, and unfolding the enclosed card in anticipation of a paragraph packed full of wit and wisdom from their favorite local author.

Should the message be funny? Irreverent? Profound? Heartfelt? Lighthearted? Generic? Some creative combination? As a romance writer, I use words as my creative medium for conveying ageless themes and amorphous feelings. Surely I should be able to distill the essence of an entire relationship into one brief, eloquent sequences of sentences. Right? Right?!

The. Pressure!

Oscar the Cute wishes everyone a
warm holiday season.
As a result of my (self-imposed) expectations of literary genius, each holiday season finds me sitting at the kitchen table before my festive tools of torture, tapping my fingers, rubbing my temples, and wondering how to birth each ethereal, witty, personal, and poignant message. Ten pages of stickers, forty-three labels, fifty cards, one hundred stamps, and thirteen tons of authorial guilt and responsibility.

No one mentioned this aspect of authorship.

That said, happy holidays, my friends! Insert delightfully funny, meaningful, enlightening observation here. 

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Thursday Threads: The Highlander's Reluctant Bride by Cathy MacRae

The Highlander’s Reluctant Bride
Book 2 in The Highlander’s Bride series
by Cathy MacRae

Genre: Historical Romance set in the Highlands of Scotland, 1377
Heat Scale: Sensual

Cover blurb:
Determined to keep the Macrory clan’s holdings out of the clutches of the Lord of the Isles and marauding pirates, King Robert II sends his man, Lord Ranald Scott, to hold Scaurness Castle. There, Laird Macrory lays dying, awaiting word from his son who is missing on the battlefields of France. If the son is not found before the old laird dies, Ranald will take over as laird—and marry Laird Macrory’s headstrong daughter.
Lady Caitriona sees no reason she cannot rule the clan in her brother’s stead, and is bitterly disappointed with the king’s decision to send a man to oversee the castle and people. Not only is Ranald Scott only distantly related to the Macrory clan, but he was her childhood nemesis. She has little trust or like for him.
Her disappointment turns to panic when the king’s plan is completely revealed and she realizes she must wed Ranald. Pirates, treachery, and a 4-year-old girl stand between her and Ranald’s chance at happiness. What will it take for them to learn to trust each other and find the love they both deserve?

Excerpt:

“So, the king forced Eaden to wed,” Riona murmured. Her gaze caught Ranald’s. “What will he do to me?”
Ranald noted her sudden pallor, her grey eyes widening until they were naught but huge silver orbs glowing against her skin. Now was as good a time as any to tell her what King Robert intended for her, but he could not force the words.
“Ye are a laird’s daughter,” he reminded her. “And an heiress. Yer mother’s dower lands north of here are of great value to the king.”
“And I am of little worth, aye?” Riona flared.
“Nae. Ye are of great worth.”
“But a pawn to the king.”
Ranald sighed. This was not going as he planned. “We are all pawns in one way or another, Ree. The king willnae let ye stay on yer own. Ye are a ward of the crown, now.”
“So, he’ll marry me off to some rebellious laird he wants to drag over to his side, using me and my lands to hold him?”
“Nae. No’ so bad as all that.”
“Then, to a wealthy laird who’s all but doddering in his cups, hoping I’ll no’ breed an heir before he dies, giving title to the land to the king and my next husband?”
Ranald lifted an eyebrow. The lass was getting worked up over nothing.
“Marriage, yes. Doddering auld man, no.”
Riona snapped her head to one side, a glower on her face. “Then, who?”
Ranald swallowed and gave her a crooked smile.
“Me.”

Links:

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Transcribing Our Emotional Maps

In my third book of the “Hunted Series,” Hunted Dreams, my dreaming main character suddenly finds herself at a laden dinner table. She grabs a fork and digs in.  With each bite, she experiences an explosion of feeling, each one different than the one before: terror, disgust, and rage, to name a few.

This scene was one of the hardest ones I’ve ever written. I forced myself to describe in intense detail every sensation of each emotion: the taste and color of each feeling, the bodily sensations, the resulting thoughts and intentions. Doing so, I discovered something rather profound: describing feelings is tough!

The illustration for the below-mentioned study, found here

You can imagine my delight when I stumbled across this study. It uses self-reports to determine where people physically experience feelings. Looking at the picture, I’m flabbergasted by how our bodies literally feel more or less, depending on our current emotional state. For example, I find fascinating how many feelings find a home in the chest. Whether this is inherent in humans or because we Westerners discuss the heart as the seat of emotions, feelings tend to literally get us right here.

Even more interesting for me is the feeliness (totally a word, or at least it should be) of hands and feet. I can imagine hands clenching when someone is angry, but happiness and love make our feet tingle? What, so we can get ready to run into the waiting arms of our suitor? Whatever the reason, I would never, ever have thought to include feet in my descriptions of happiness.

The cardinal rule of writing is Show Rather than Tell©. This Finnish study, and its resulting illustration, give us a literal map of feelings. It’s color-coded emotions, folks. So, instead of saying “He’s sad,” we can talk about the pressure in the chest, the cold weightiness of limbs, the tightening of the throat.

What a delicious challenge and responsibility we have to describe holistically -- emotionally, physically, and intellectually – our characters’ emotional terrain.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Autumnal Hibernation

So, you may have noticed my posts have been a bit sparse lately. Perhaps Elle is on tour,
Yes, I am shamelessly bribing your love and forgiveness
with a pic of an adorable, five-month-old puppy.
you’re undoubtedly thinking, hyping up her latest book. But alas, my friends, alas; such is not the case. After a summer of schlepping multiple times to Arizona, California, and Colorado, I’ve been content to snuggle into a calmer autumn. Since then, I’ve immersed myself in home things: some sick furkids, a wedding (for me, not for the cats), a new puppy, and other domestic thingies. All in all, I’m pulling inside my turtle shell and pulling the door closed behind me.

I miss waxing poetic about every social topic known to humanity. I do. And I’ll return soon. But since my posts right now would probably consist of the best ways to get the cat pee smell out of dog beds or whines about the cost of wedding DJs, it’s probably best that my rants come a bit less frequently right now.

For all those reading this, though, may your autumn sparkle. Big ol’ hugs to you all!

Friday, October 23, 2015

Thursday Threads: The Widow's Walk by Carole Ann Moleti



The Widow's Walk
by Carole Ann Moleti
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Heat level: Sexy, Heat Level 3-4

(available in ebook and print)

http://www.amazon.com/Widows-Walk-Carole-Ann-Moleti-ebook/dp/B00PHYCLHY

 Synopsis:

Mike and Liz Keeny are newlyweds, new parents, and the proprietors of the Barrett Inn, an 1875 Victorian on Cape Cod, which just happens to be haunted. By their own ghosts. The Inn had become an annex of Purgatory, putting Mike, Liz, and their infant son in danger. Selling the historic seaside bed and breakfast was the only answer, one that Liz and her own tortured specter refused to consider. Were they doomed to follow the same path that led to disaster in their previous lives? Was getting out, getting away, enough?

Excerpt:
“Look, for now, we’ll just stay where we are–together. If Liz and Mike are united, then Jared and Elisabeth aren’t going to be able to get in between us.” He brushed the tears off her cheeks.
She stared at him intently, fear, maybe desperation in her eyes. “We can only talk to each other about this. Others might use any information against us.”
“Who would do that, Liz?’
Her demeanor hardened. She sat up, raised her chin. “My son. Your daughter. Sandra.”
“You’re paranoid. The kids have no inkling about ghosts. All Sandra has are theories. She doesn’t know about your incident–or my illness. And I’m not going to tell her.” Guilt twanged in his gut. Sandra had come up with all the ghostly interpretations on her own, right?
Liz jumped up. “She knows about my injury. Maybe not how it happened, but when Mae went in there to get my things, she figured out it was for me. She reads minds, or manipulates people into blabbing what they know.”
Mike lowered his voice to a whisper. “It doesn’t take much for Mae to spill information. I think you’re giving Sandra too much credit.” Yet, she did ask him about the ghosts as soon as he sat down.
“You can joke all you want, Mike, but this is serious. We can’t let anyone else in.”
“I won’t say a word about anything ghostly to anyone. As long as things stay under control.”
Liz studied him.
Mike squirmed. “I think I’m going to take a nap.” He settled back on the sofa.
She tucked the blanket around him and kissed him on the cheek. “I’ll go help Mae with dinner.”
She didn’t believe him. He didn’t trust her. This was never going to work.

Author Info:
Carole Ann Moleti is a nurse-midwife in New York City, thus explaining her fascination with paranormal and urban fantasy that infuses everything she writes. Carole's novel, The Widow's Walk was released by Soulmate in 2014. Her short fiction is featured in Beltane: Ten Tales of Witchcraft. Excerpts of Carole's memoir, Someday I'm Going to Write a Book: Diary of an Urban Missionary, range from the sweet and inspirational in “A Quilt of Holidays” to the edgy and irreverent in “Not Your Mother's Book: On Being a Woman.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Thursday Threads: "The Valentine's Proposal" by Tina Susedik



MY SEXY VALENTINE HOLIDAY ANTHOLOGY
Featuring Tina Susedik’s Short Story, The Valentine’s Proposal

Other Contributing Anthology Authors: Cheryl Yeko, Sage Spelling, Lynn Cahoon, S.C. Mitchell, Char Chaffin 

ANTHOLOGY HEAT LEVEL: Steamy

Blurb for The Valentine’s Proposal: 

When a Valentine's Day proposal doesn't go the way she expected, librarian Janetta Simonson's life changes in ways she’s never dreamed.

BUY LINK:  My Sexy Valentine: http://amzn.com/B00SSFM1OChttp://amzn.com/B00SSFM1OC


EXCERPT FROM The Valentine’s Proposal:

Devlin Baran followed the statuesque brunette as she stomped from the woman’s room and headed to the bar. His cock twitched as her hips swayed in tight jeans. Was the guy who dumped her crazy? To trade in this hot piece for the washed-out blonde?
He’d noticed her the moment she’d walked into the building. Full breasts. Tapered waist. Not too thin. Tall. His body had reacted immediately. He liked his women tall. He’d been ready to join her when the jerk arrived. During their argument he'd called her Janetta. The name seemed to suit her.
Pseudo cowboys irritated the hell out of him. New boots, shiny belt buckle, cheesy western shirt were all signs. But even real cowhands dressed up for a Saturday night on the town, so he could be mistaken. When the man tossed his hat brim side down on the table, Devlin knew him to be a fake. Any real westerner knew you put your hat top side down so not to ruin the folds.
Since he was out of luck with the brunette, he’d headed to the men’s room, where he observed the encounter. He nearly applauded when the woman smacked the pretend cowboy across the cheek and threw the ring into the crowd. Hell. Not only did he like them tall, he loved them spirited, like his fillies on his ranch.
As she headed to the bar, he shook his head. He couldn’t let a hot woman interfere with the job he had to do, needing all his focus to find out who was slipping drugs into women’s drinks. As a rancher working undercover as an FBI agent, he always seemed to be one-step behind the assholes who thought it fine to have sex with unconscious women.
The man, or men, moved from bar to bar in the small rural area. This was the only one that hadn’t been hit. He hoped to hit pay dirt tonight.
He tried to ignore Janetta’s shapely ass as she sat on a stool next to another pseudo cowboy. She must have a thing for their type. After taking her time with one drink, the man tipped his overly white Stetson, leaned in and said something, making her laugh. The back of Devlin’s neck prickled. He seemed familiar.
What was she thinking, Devlin wondered as she let the guy put his hand on her thigh. Even though she oozed sex appeal, after her encounter with Fred, he had the feeling she wasn’t a sexually aggressive person. She seemed more like a kindergarten teacher.
Janetta took a sip of her orange-colored drink and spoke to the man—who threw his head back and laughed. The hand went a bit further up her leg. She took another drink and swayed into him. Maybe he was wrong and she was just another floozy looking to pick up an unsuspecting cowboy.
The man swung an arm around her shoulders and lifted the glass to her lips. Her head dropped into his neck. He glanced over his shoulder and snuggled her into his side. After a few minutes he pulled her from the stool, and like a man helping a drunk companion, headed toward the door.
Shit. She’s been drugged.

ALSO BY TINA SUSEDIK:

All I Want for Christmas is a Soul Mate: http://www.amzn.com/B00GH2I458/

Twitter: @tinasusedik
Website: TinaSusedik.com
Facebook: Tina Susedik, Author
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17908316-riding-for-love

http://www.soulmatepublishing.com/riding-for-love/

Monday, September 14, 2015

Becoming Multilingual in the Love Languages

A coconut milk latte says "love" in all languages.
I just finished writing an uber-romantic scene. In it, my two love interests, who are still ostensibly at the friend stage, cuddle one another for reassurance while spilling deep, dark secrets. Oh. Em. Gee. It just couldn’t get any more passionate, could it?
Actually, maybe it could.
It occurred to me this morning that almost all of my romantic scenes involve, well, cuddling and secret sharing. And while it may be surprising — nay, shocking! — to imagine, not everyone expresses their love through talk and touch.
Ever heard of those love language things? Cheesy, I know, but I find them useful tools for talking about the different ways we express and receive loving gestures. Basically, the concept says there exist five ways of showing peeps you love them: words of affirmation (verbal love, baby), acts of service (love as verb), receiving gifts (show me the stuff!), quality time (giving the gift of time and attention), and physical touch (affection through physicality).
Oh, and because you know we all want to, here’s a brief quiz that determines our love language.
Obviously, I’m someone who understands love through the verbal and physical. Not surprising, I guess, since words are my life. But still, I can’t help but think others who don’t share my love languages may not fully grasp the depth of feeling that I attempt to weave into those scenes. Heck, my fiancé is an acts of service and gift-giving kind of person; I know I’ve had to adjust to thinking of love as a tangible act like researching the very best brands of cat food or a gift in the form of an almost daily coconut milk latte. (Yeah, I don’t have it so bad.)
I’m not so great at making my characters express their affection and love in varied ways. I mean, would it kill me to have the shero buy a hero an awesome book on Civil Rights history or make the hero serve the shero bagels and lox in bed?
Anyone else struggle to reflect diversity in love styles? I welcome all suggestions for diversifying my characters, even in this small but significant way.
And now, if you’ll excuse me, this coconut milk latte isn’t going to drink itself.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Thursday Threads: The Perfect Duke by Dawn Ireland



The Perfect Duke
By Dawn Ireland

Genre: Historical Romance (Late Georgian Era)
Heat Level: Sensual

Back Cover Blurb:

Known as The Marble Duke amongst the Ton, Garret Weston, the Duke of Kendal sets himself
apart from his peers. Nothing will hinder his guilt-driven attempt to become a perfect duke.  Nothing that is, save the alluring and imaginative betrothed he’d thought dead. His intended believes-of all things-that she is a Vicar’s daughter. The “perfect” duke needs a “perfect” duchess, but how was he to discern her suitability? Employing her as a governess to his niece seemed like an ideal solution. But whose “suitability” is being tested? His betrothed refuses to see he is beyond redemption. And most grievous of all, she stirs his blood, making him forget what’s important. 

Cara believes fairy tales really can come true, until she meets the unrelenting and arrogant Duke of Kendal. He looks like a Prince, but acts like a Beast. Why must he challenge her at every turn? Her greatest peril is her attraction to the vulnerable, seductive man behind the title. A match between them would be impossible. But can she show him, without losing her heart that “perfect” is in the eye of the beholder?


Excerpt:

“The horse seems to know you.”
“He should. There was a time when I practically lived in the stable. Storm was my favorite.”
“What happened?”
“I became a duke.”
“Oh.”
He straightened and forced his features into a mask of indifference. “So, Rachel loves horses.” He turned to face Cara. “I can appreciate my niece’s fondness, but I can not allow her to frequent the stable.”
“Why not?”
“It is not proper for young ladies of her station.”
“Garret, she’s a child.”
It was the first time she’d used his name, and somehow, Rachel visiting the horses didn’t seem like such a large request. “I will only allow it if she uses the passageway. At least I can keep the knowledge of her visits to a minimum. If you come with her, you will need to use the tunnel as well.”
“I can’t.”
“Why not?”
She blushed and turned away. “I’m afraid.” She said it so quietly, he wasn’t sure he heard her.
“Afraid? Of what?”
“Dark, enclosed places. Even as a child, I fell asleep with a candle burning.” She faced him and gave a small smile. “Perhaps I’m afraid that a beast will gobble me up in the dark.”
“There are no beasts at Belcraven, Miss McClure. I would not allow anyone to hurt you.”
“Anyone?”
“Never.” He started toward her and stopped. Damn, it would be better if he didn’t get close to her. As he left the stable, her whisper followed him.
“Not even you?”


Links:
Twitter.com/AuthorDIreland
Facebook.com/DawnIrelandAuthor


The Perfect Duke
ASIN: B00BT0NGOC

Sunday, July 19, 2015

The Sound of Writing

The hills are alive with the sound of… writing?

Much has been said about writers’ creepy Internet search histories, the music we blast while writing – heck, even whether we bother changing out of our jammies before jumping in front of the keyboard. The time has come to rip away the veil and expose yet another bizarre facet of the authorial experience: the truly weird noises we employ while writing.

Okay, would you call this a leer? A smirk? A goofy smile?
After all, it’s not always easy to come up with words for all those items and events percolating in our creative noggins. If you’re like me, you’ve been known – perhaps well known – to gesture wildly, pace noisily near your desk, or repeatedly smack your palm against your chest, all in efforts to find The. Perfect. Word.

So, for example, someone standing outside my office might hear some of the following:

[Growling] “Kind of a rumble…” [Growl] “Maybe a snarl…”

“What’s that when you say it low, like [mumble, mumble]? Is that a mutter? A murmur? A throaty whisper?”

[Slapping arm with other hand] “Is that, like, a crack? A clap? It sounds sharp and meaty. What word means that?”

“What is that when you walk slowly? Not an amble. A stroll? No, too casual. A shuffle? No, too sneaky…”

[Suspiciously lusty noise] “Not a moan, exactly.” [Lusty noise continues] “Groan?”

Someone standing outside my office would either think me a few doughnuts short of a baker’s dozen or else pop some popcorn, pull up a chair, and revel in the concert. Of course, if they took the last few steps into the room, they could also witness me tossing my hands in the air, twisting my face into complicated patterns, and emulating drunken staggers. Like at least some other authors, I suspect, writing is my very own, unique combination of charades, name that song, and SAT-level word association.

Writing may be one of the great verbal arts, but no one said it shouldn’t be performative, as well. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Thursday Threads: Pirates of the Dark Nebula by S.C. Mitchell




Pirates of the Dark Nebula
S.C. Mitchell


Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Heat Level: Sizzling

Blurb:
It can’t fall into the wrong hands.

Luna Callista holds the key to a galaxy-changing new technology. Captured by a ruthless band of deep-space pirates, she’s rescued by a man filled with dark secrets of his own. Who is Rik Mazar?

Galactic protector or rogue pirate?

After three years undercover among the Brotherhood of the Dark Nebula, Rik Mazar isn’t sure what side of the law he’s walking. In a world of murder and betrayal, his life goes on the line every day. But, protecting Luna Callista means putting his heart in as much danger as his hide.

A rusting service droid, a Ferang fortuneteller, and a ship full of back-water refugees are their only allies, as two hearts go into orbit to save a galaxy in peril.

HEARTS IN ORBIT: VOLUME 2 – PIRATES OF THE DARK NEBULA is a science fiction romance set in the far-flung space-traveling future, continuing the series’ course across a galaxy filled with love and adventure.


Excerpt:

He took a step closer and tucked his fist under her chin, raising her lips to meet his. Warm, firm, and enticing. The thrill shot through her core once again as his mouth took her to another place, another world.
Time stopped. Her whole focus was him. Only him. His lips on hers. His hard body pressed against her.
His arms wrapped around her, a comforting cocoon—protection from the cold, dark galactic sector about them. It would be so easy to say it was just comfort and protection she was seeking in this man, but there was so much more to it than that. So much more to him.
His eyes promised safety—his lips heaven.
Still, she barely knew him. Who was he? What was he?
An actor and a con man, to be sure. So, was this all an act too?
His tongue tangled with hers, plundering ever so sweetly. Damp heat built in her core. The bold press of his erection against her stomach betrayed his arousal. This was no act. He wanted her as much as she wanted him. Did there need to be anything more to it?
“I am tracking an ion storm entering the quadrant, Captain.” Harvey’s monotone intruded into the passion of the moment. She’d all but forgotten the droid was standing behind her.
Rik broke off the kiss. Reluctance colored his gaze. “Thank you, Harvey. Continue tracking. Let me know if it gets near enough to bring us under its influence.” He shook his head. Lowered his voice. “That was probably a huge mistake.”
He sighed, looking deeply into her eyes.
“Oh, I don’t think so, sir.” Harvey’s retort took Luna by surprise once again. “Those storms can get quite intense.”
Rik chuckled, his heated stare still locked onto her. “Yes, quite intense.”

***

Author Bio: Hidden strengths, adventurous hearts.

S.C.Mitchell grew up an avid reader of comic books, science fiction and fantasy literature. He’s been writing stories for over thirty years. In 2010 he left his job as a computer desktop support specialist to pursue his passion for writing full time. He is a member of the Romance Writers of America as well as the Wisconsin chapter.

As a writer of paranormal and sci-fi romance, fantasy, and science fiction, Steve crafts unique and wondrous worlds where his characters explore, romp, and fall in love. Whether traveling through dark, demon filled dimensions, the edge of wild space, or ancient mythological heavens, his heroes and heroines, guided by their adventurous hearts, discover hidden strengths on their pathway to enduring love.


Links:

Friday, July 10, 2015

Thursday Threads: Play with My Heart by Meda White

Play With My Heart
Meda White

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Heat Level: Sweet to Sensual


Blurb:
Southern musician and closet geek Liz Baker enjoys her quiet life. While in Los Angeles helping her brother with a house project, the simple life gets complicated when British television actor Ian Clarke walks into the picture.

Ian enjoys his celebrity status in Hollywood and is determined nothing and no one will get in the way of his plans for success on the big screen. He never counted on meeting a woman like Liz, but she’s the only one who can help him with a personal problem.

Forced into close quarters where priorities and cultures clash, an intense attraction catches them both by surprise. Secrets, old lovers and the paparazzi threaten their new dreams and a chance for love could be lost forever.

Play With My Heart is a finalist in the 2014 BTS Reader's Choice Red Carpet Awards in the Contemporary Category and a 2015 RONE Nominee in the Sweet Contemporary Category.


Tagline:
Southern musician Liz Baker enjoys her quiet life out of the spotlight.
British television star Ian Clarke dreams of greater fame and success on the big screen.
Dreams can change.


Excerpt:
When they reached the front door of Danny’s house, Liz turned to Ian. “Thanks for the escort. Now, get back over there and enjoy your party. I hope I didn’t ruin it.”

“You couldn’t ruin anything if you tried.” Ian leaned in and kissed her cheek. It was warm. 

“Next time, leave that shovel at home, ya here?” she said as a smile played at the corners of her full lips.

“One day, I’ll pay you a compliment and you’ll accept it.”

“You’re an actor. I might not believe anything that comes out of your mouth,” she said with a smirk and raised eyebrows.

He tsked. “So cynical. I wonder what made you that way?”

Liz tilted her head to one side and her smile broadened as she shrugged. Ian was caught in it, forgetting what he’d even said. There was something about her. Not one thing, but many little things, all of which added up to something really unexpected.

“I’ve always been this way. I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said that. I didn’t mean to imply that you aren’t a good actor. I honestly don’t know. But I Googled you and you’ve been at it a long time, so I bet you’re pretty talented.”

“You Googled me?” Warmth spread through his chest and his own smile broadened. It was ridiculous to be so enamored by this Southern belle. Women searched for him online quite frequently, but he didn’t know those women. This one was standing a few feet away, breathing the same air. He was on the verge of asking her to dinner, but stopped himself just in time. If he couldn’t think of another option, she might be his caregiver and she definitely wouldn’t want to date him then.


About the Author:
Meda White writes sweet, sultry, and southern contemporary and new adult romance. Born with Georgia clay running through her veins, she continues to enjoy the Southern lifestyle with her husband, a very spoiled Collie, and a stray cat who adopted the family. When not writing, you might find her making music, shooting zombie targets, teaching yoga, or explaining the meaning of her unusual first name.



Links:

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Thursday Threads: Fallen Redemption by R.B. Austin



Fallen Redemption 
by R B Austin

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Heat Level: Sizzling

Blurb

Killing Fallen to save mankind is Cade’s redemption for murder and only one human—mouthwatering and absolutely forbidden—stands in his way.

Cade committed himself to saving lives before he learned the full consequences of his life-altering decision. It wasn’t until he was tending his sick wife that he learned the enormity of what he’d done and he was unable to save her from the monster he had become. Consumed with guilt and praying for absolution, he threw himself into killing every Fallen he could find to save the humans he’d sworn to protect. But then Emma, deliciously mortal and completely forbidden, swept into his world, stirring an overpowering desire. Now he’s not only fighting soulless creatures, but also his inner cravings, trying to maintain his distance and continue on his path to forgiveness. He won’t lose control again and lose another love.


Excerpt

The cut was small and not deep; it would stop bleeding in a matter of minutes.
Blood seeped from the wound. It trickled down Sarah’s wrist and pooled in her upturned hand.
He froze.
Changes overcame his body. Uncontrollable. Unknown.
Breath quickened. Heart pounded as loud as a horse’s gallop. Sarah hadn’t awakened. The pain from her cut was insubstantial compared to the pain of her sickness.
The thick, crimson liquid flowing from the wound was anything but insubstantial to Caderyn. Still unable to move, his eyes hadn’t wavered from the blood. The tray left his hands and clattered to the ground. His knees buckled and he sank to the floor, bringing himself an inch from the cut. The scent of blood filled his nostrils. Consumed all thought. Sight. He wanted to close his eyes and savor the reverent aroma filling his senses. Something awakened inside of him.
Foreign.
Monstrous.
Wrong.
He was hungry, yet didn’t want food. Thirsty, but didn’t want to reach for a cup of water. Another drop of blood welled from the cut. A growl tore from his throat.
It was the switch and it had been thrown.
One moment he was himself. The monster inside separate. Next the wall between the two vanished. He was the Behnshma. His humanity gone. Another growl. It echoed around the house. Filled his ears.
He was ravenous. The fact he hadn’t eaten in a little over a week ached his empty belly and burned his dry, parched throat. There were two pricks of pain in his top gum. Finger in his mouth, he found two long, sharp as knives, teeth. Like Elias. Like the wolves in the forest when they tore into a deer carcass. Their muzzles bloody, meat dangling from their mouths. Blood.
He knew what he wanted to do, what his body demanded he do. Caderyn licked his lips and his tongue nicked an elongated tooth. His own blood melted decadently over his tongue. A flood of senses erupted. Never had he tasted anything this wonderful. His mouth zinged with flavor. The blood coated his throat. He’d been dying of thirst his whole life but hadn’t known it. Warmth spread through his body.
His hands shook as he brought them to Sarah’s arm. Grasping her wrist and forearm he leaned toward the blood. Inch by inch. He was a magnet and her arm was the polar opposite.
Her inaudible yelp of fright permeated through the rushing noise in his ears. He tore his eyes away and met her wide-eyed startled ones.
Stop.
Fear was an acrid, burning stench in his nostrils. Her thoughts a chaotic jumble weaving through his mind. She tried to move her lethargic limbs. Tried to escape. To break free.
He flexed his hands, squeezing her arm as his gaze trailed from the vein in her neck to the one in her wrist right below the cut. The blood slowed and the edges of the wound begun to dry. The tangy, copper scent of the fresh liquid underneath her skin reached his nose. Caderyn listened to it pass through her veins. Faster and faster.
Ignoring his wife’s futile attempts to escape, he leaned closer and inhaled. A growl erupted from his throat. He bent. Licked the wound. Groaned. His cock hardened.
Sarah, panicked now, tried to yank her arm free. It was the most she’d moved in days. Growling, like a dog with his bone, he held down her upper arm and her squirming hand. Pushed it back until her forearm bowed, and the cut extended to him like a present.
Caderyn. Please. I beg you.
He was hurting her arm. Scaring her. She was begging.
Flicking his tongue over her wrist, he caught another drop of the thick liquid gold. Then another and another. It wasn’t enough. He bared his teeth, striking fast to sink them deep into her wrist. She gave a weak jerk. Caderyn drew her blood into his mouth with long pulls. His cock jerked and warmth spread inside his breeches. There was no stopping. Her struggles to escape were an annoying insect buzzing around the room. The pleas to stop were shouts in his head. Both were easy to ignore. Sarah ceased to struggle.
He was killing her.
He couldn’t stop.
And didn’t stop until she was dead

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