Thursday, December 18, 2014

Author Thursday: Guest Post by Lisa Whitefern

Today's guest is fellow Samhain author Lisa Whitefern, and she's talking about writing romance with Christmas magic.

Happy Holidays!

Writing Holiday Romance

It seems we never get tired of reading Christmas novels. Readers love holiday romance, and it’s fun to use all those wonderful sights and smells while writing a Christmas themed book. Peppermint canes, gingerbread cookies evergreens, fairy lights and snow fill us all with excitement, and memories of Christmas past.

Writing a Christmas romance you want to invoke a heartwarming feeling, and it’s perfectly possible to do this, and still write at a very steamy heat level. A Christmas romance need not be a sweet romance to be heartwarming. You just need to add that extra emotional punch.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Delilah Devlin

Delilah Devlin has returned! And she's here to talk about her new release, Burnin' Up Memphis. It's just the thing to warm you up on a cold winter's day. ;-)

1. Last time you were here you described your heat level as extremely spicy, like “Serrano peppers vs. jalapenos.” What is your favorite thing about writing spicy stories?

I love the fact I don’t have to hold back. My characters can go wherever they want–and they do!

2. Where did you get the inspiration for your new release?

I wrote five stories in my Delta Heat series revolving around five men who were Memphis PD cops. Along the way, two firefighters entered into the sexy play with my cops. It was natural to branch off and follow the guys at Firehouse 69. I still have stories to tell...

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with A. Catherine Noon

Today's guest is the all-around awesome A. Catherine Noon. She's a Romance Diva, a NaNoWriMo Municipal Liaison, a textile artist (when does she find time to sleep?) and more! She's talking about her book SEALED BY FIRE, which I bought the second after I finished reading the blurb because it's totally my catnip.


1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Paranormal? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

LOL! I love the “all of the above” answer. I write all sorts of things. What Rachel and I have published, so far, is M/M romance in the urban fantasy genre as well as science fantasy.

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

I am inspired by all sorts of things. I think in images, and a potent one can help me see a scene or a character. Sometimes it’s an image of a person, such as an actor or model. Other times it’s a setting, such as a road leading down a tree-lined lane or a cityscape. It depends. Songs will inspire me too – sometimes directly, if the lyrics suggest a story; other times by the mood they invoke.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with J. Leigh Bailey

Today's guest is YA and NA LGBT romance writer J. Leigh Bailey. She's talking about inspiration and her upcoming release in the anthology MYTH AND MAGIC—QUEER FAIRY TALES. Very cool. :)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

There are a couple common themes in everything I write, most importantly the achievement of a Happy Ever After (or at the very least as Happy For Now) ending. Whether I’m writing about werewolves or gay teenagers, there’s always at least an element of romance. Even my horror stories include a love interest. Outside of that, I’m a sucker for anything that involves self-acceptance and a building family (whether family by blood or by heart). That being said, I primarily write Young Adult and New Adult LGBT (male/male) romance.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Sandra Jones

My guest today is Samhain author Sandra Jones, and she's celebrating the release of her new book Her Wicked Captain with a book tour and a giveaway!

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Lots of historical action. LOL! Think corsets, whiskey, pistol duels, river pirates, and Southern drawls.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Charlie Cochrane

My guest today is author Charlie Cochrane, who has my new favorite answer to the first question. :) Enjoy!

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Not all, but some. I write mysteries (historical and contemporary) with a distinct dash of slash – think Agatha Christie meets Oscar Wilde – and gay romances (of all sorts) with a pinch of spice. I don’t write full on sex scenes (they remind me too much of stuffing the Christmas turkey) but I do like to show the emotional side of a physical relationship.

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

Any and everywhere. A piece of music can make a storyline appear in my head, as can a chance viewing of something in the street. I’m a great people watcher – a ten second interaction I witnessed in a rugby club car park turned into a whole novella about a cross dressing actor and a rugby playing architect.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Author Thursday: Guest Post by Elizabeth Harmon

My guest today is contemporary romance author Elizabeth Harmon! And in anticipation of NaNoWriMo 2014 she's sharing NaNo prep advice on writing Candy Bar scenes. Enjoy. ;-)

How Sweet They Are

Last Halloween if someone had told me that in exactly one year, I’d be doing pre-publication edits on one book, second-drafting another and first-drafting a third, I’d have laughed loudly.

Or run screaming. With fear, not joy.

Monday, October 27, 2014

NaNoWriMo 2014 Prep: Tips for Painless Plotting

NaNoWriMo is almost here! And there was much rejoicing.

In case you missed them, I have 3 Simple Tips for Slaying your Word Count and Writing Exercises to Warm Up your Muse. Today I'm going to talk about a few simple plotting techniques.

Why plot?

When I first started writing, I was a pantser--I had no plot in mind, I just sat down and started writing my NaNo. Over time, however, I've learned the value of plotting. Even the simplest outline can be useful. I think many of us cringe at the idea of an outline thanks to traumatic high school composition experiences where we were forced to outline boring research papers. These aren't those kind of outlines. You won't be graded. ;)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Susan Rae

Today's guest is romantic suspense author Susan Rae. Chicago authors have a special place in my heart, so I'm excited to have her here today. I'm definitely going to check her DeLuca series out. (Hot Chicago police officers? Yes, please!) ;-)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Definitely Steamy Suspense!

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

Very often, the ideas for my suspense storylines come from the newspaper. I read the newspaper every morning and every so often an article will spark my imagination. I often combine one or two story ideas and work with them as I create the hero and heroine for a novel, and their love story.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

NaNoWriMo 2014 Prep: Warming Up Your Muse

You can't start writing your NaNoWriMo novel until November 1st, but you can do pre-writing exercises. Outlining, character profiles, and other prompts are fair game, so today I'm going to talk about ways to get muse into noveling shape with a few writing exercises.
  • They Fight Crime: Need some wacky inspiration? Try the They Fight Crime! Movie Idea Generator. (He's an unsexedmaster criminal whom everyone believes is mad. She's a patronizing opera singer prone to fits of blood-crazed rage. Together, They Fight Crime!) It's pretty hilarious, and writing a scene or two with the random suggestions is a great warm-up activity.
  • 20 Questions: Character questionnaires can be a fun way to build your protagonist's background. I have an example of two question sets here. I like to use some of the basic questions to build a character profile. The profile is comprised of a little background info, the character's basic vital statistics, and a picture of the person I'd like to play him or her in a blockbuster movie. (Benedict Cumberbatch is often part of my dream cast. And Tom Hiddleston.)
  • What Has It Got in Its Pocketses?: In this exercise you list the items a character carries in her purse or his wallet, and why s/he has them, like an old family photo worn at the corners or a punch card for the local hipster coffee shop about to earn a free drink. You can always spot a romance author by the promotional pens in her purse. ;-)
  • OkCupid is Always So...Inspiring: This is your character's first date with someone he/she met online. What happens?
  • What Characters Want: Your character acquires a magic or sciencey object that allows its user to read minds. What sort of shenanigans ensue?
  • I Do This to my Sims All the Time: Your character walks into her house and it’s completely different — furniture, decor, all changed. And nobody’s home. What happens next?
  • Don't Blink: Your character has a severe phobia. How does the character overcome this fear? How is the character consumed by this fear? (OMG CLOWNS. WHY, AMERICAN HORROR STORY? WHY???!!!)
  • No, it's Not the U2 Album: Your character’s iPod plays a song she didn't upload onto it. What song is it? Where did it come from?
There are a million different prompts out there just a Google search away. Have a favorite one to share? Please leave it in the comments!

Next week I'll be talking about plotting and story mapping. NaNoWriMo is almost here! I'm excited. :-D

Want to win a copy of my 2011 NaNo Poison in the Blood? You can enter here:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Poison in the Blood by Robyn Bachar

Poison in the Blood

by Robyn Bachar

Giveaway ends October 31, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Mary Jo Burke

Today's guest is fantasy and paranormal romance author Mary Jo Burke. She's talking about her fantasy romance Mother Nature's Man, and I'm glad to have her here. :) (How gorgeous is that cover? I love it.) (And I'm so picking up a copy of All Hours Trading.)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Paranormal? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I write whatever pops into my head, I let the story find the genre later. My paranormal book, All Hours Trading, features a centuries old vampire and his financial advisor lady love. Camelot meets Wall Street. It started as a contemporary romance. My fantasy book, Mother Nature’s Man focuses on Mother Nature’s search for a mate. She gets blamed for so much misery in the world, I decided she be able to tell her side and fall in love. This one started as an historical romance. I like to add humor to my stories because being able to laugh together makes life sweeter.

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

I love to read and watch movies, and then rewrite them in my mind. I change endings and rearrange characters and settings.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

NaNoWriMo 2014 Prep: 3 Simple Tips for Slaying your Word Count

National Novel Writing Month is almost upon us! It's my favorite time of the year. I have four published NaNo novels (Blood, Smoke and Mirrors; Bewitched, Blooded and Bewildered; Poison in the Blood; and Sunsinger), and though I haven't won NaNo every year I always make an attempt. I'm still on the fence about whether I'll be working on Harrison's book or the sequel to Bite Me this year. We'll see...

My previous NaNo posts can be found here. I've covered topics from describing my past NaNo experiences to offering tips on plotting and using tropes in your novel, but today I'll be talking about hitting your daily word count. To achieve NaNoWriMo glory you must cross the 50k word finish line by November 30th. The simplest way to ensure this is to set a daily word count goal of 1,667 words. (Aside, Thanksgiving will almost always mess you up, so it's best to plan ahead and bank some extra words before the holiday hits.)

Word Count Slayage Tip 1: NaNoWriMo, meet HabitRPG

I love HabitRPG. It's a simple, free site that allows you to treat your life like a role-playing game. (This is an old pic of my character. Now I'm level 34!) Habit allows you to create your own customized daily tasks, habits, and to do lists. I use it both for writing and everyday tasks. If I write 1k words, I get xp. Do the dishes, get xp. Walk the dog, get xp. You get the idea.

For the gamer-minded author, HabitRPG is a great way to stay motivated to finish your work-in-progress. People often ask me, "What do you win with NaNoWriMo?" Satisfaction! But if you're a NaNoer and a HabitRPGer, then you get satisfaction and experience points. ;)

Word Count Slayage Tip 2: Word War!

If you have a competitive mindset, then word wars are a great way to increase your word count. You set a specific amount of time (like an hour), and the person who writes the most words within that time period wins the war. My BFF Diana and I used to bet sandwiches--the loser would have to pay for the winner's sandwich the next time we went to our favorite coffee shop.

Many authors on Twitter like to do 1k/1hr challenges, where they recruit other writers to join them in trying to write 1,000 words in one hour. Or you could follow @NaNoWordSprints on Twitter for crazy writing prompts and extra motivation.

Word Count Slayage Tip 3: Turn off the Internet

It's easy to fall down the research rabbit hole when working on a new novel. The temptation to stop and look up dates, place names, and other interesting tidbits can turn into hours of distraction. And the Internet will always try to lure you away with promises of adorable cat videos, important FB status updates, and emails that magically appear in your inbox when you're trying to write. If you're easily distracted, then turn your Internet connection off. All the way off. Hell, unplug your modem if you can. Set a timer, apply butt to chair, and write. When you're done you can reward yourself with lolcats. ;)

Before NaNo starts I'll post about writing exercises and story mapping, so please check back for more NaNo tips. Have some favorite tips to share? Please post them in the comments!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Sheryl Nantus

I'm super thrilled to have one of my favorite authors as today's guest--Sheryl Nantus! I love all of her series. (Like super heroes? You should read the Blaze of Glory books. A shapeshifter fan? Try Blood of the Pride. Sci-fi romance? Browncoat? Read Into the Black.)

Sheryl is here to promote her second Tales from the Edge book, which is awesome. Enjoy. :)

1. Congrats on your second Tales from the Edge book! What can readers look forward to in In the Void?

In The Void tells Sean's story and how he ended up as a Mercy man. Everyone may love a Mercy man or a Mercy woman but very few know how he or she arrived there – and Sean's got his own past.

When the Bonnie Belle rescues a ship's survivor he discovers that he still has the capacity for love – but he's got to fight for it. And I'm not just talking about mental battles – pirates want Catherine Rogers dead and they're willing to go to any extent to do it, including destroying the Bonnie Belle and everyone on her.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Vivi Andrews

My guest today is fellow Samhain author Vivi Andrews. Her new sexy shapeshifter romance Taming the Lion is out now! And look at that gorgeous cover! Is it warm in here?

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I write paranormal in a variety of flavors, but lately I’ve been focusing on my sexy shape-shifter romances at the Lone Pine Pride—a secret community full of lions and tigers and bears… among others.

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

Everywhere. Is that a cop-out answer? I can say that I get my best ideas in the car, in the shower, or right before I fall asleep—essentially anytime I can’t write them down—but they just seem to come flying out of the ether and hit me upside the head. Darned if I know where they come from.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Shannyn Schroeder

Today's guest is author Shannyn Schroeder. The first book in her Hot and Nerdy trilogy releases September 29th, and that may be the best series name ever. Love it. :) Shannyn read an excerpt from Her Best Shot at the August Lady Jane's Salon--Naperville, and it was awesome. I'm excited to have her here today.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I write contemporary romance on the spicy side.

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

I get inspiration from everywhere. I watch TV (way too much), I read, and I watch people. Sometimes, it’s a small thing that will be a springboard for a character and then I let my imagination take over.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Morningstar: Cy'ren Rising Book 2 VBT and Giveaway

The second Cy'ren Rising book, Morningstar, is out now! I'm celebrating with a virtual book tour, and I'll be giving away a $25 Amazon gift card to one lucky winner at the end of the tour.

The first book in the series, Nightfall, is currently available as a free read at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, All Romance eBooks, Kobo, Samhain Publishing, and the iTunes store. Morningstar is available for purchase at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Samhain Publishing, and the iTunes store. Here's the Morningstar blurb:

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Author Thursday: Guest Post by Yolanda Sfetsos

Today I'm excited to welcome back Yolanda Sfetsos as an Author Thursday guest. She's talking about two of my favorite things--sci-fi romance and Guardians of the Galaxy. Enjoy. :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Quest Episode 1-6 Recap: A Traitor in Saenctum

"After tonight we're half of what we started with." --Paladin Patrick
Yup. Time flies when you're saving the kingdom.

When we last left our heroes, they were hiding from the spy orb! Sir Ansgar warns that the person (warlock) controlling it must be very close. Crio arrives to hide with the group, then they split, some with Ansgar and some with Crio, to find who is controlling the orb. The Grand Vizier spots the culprit! And he is tackled. But the minion is holding a fire orb! Everyone panics.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Quest Episode 1-5 Recap: Under Siege

"Christian hasn't shown the traits to be the one true hero. The one true hero should no matter what show honesty and loyalty." --Paladin Andrew
We open the episode with a red shirt warning that there is an ogre at the drawbridge!

No, not that ogre.

Panic ensues. Sir Ansgar orders the paladins to grab a scorpion, disassemble it and bring it to the top of the wall. I am immediately excited like OMG A SCORPION YES! Because I love me some siege weapons, and I'm nostalgic for Dark Age of Camelot, where my character stormed many a keep. While the paladins fumble about trying to reassemble the scorpion, Sir Ansgar runs off to melee the ogre like a proper tank. Ansgar shouts repeatedly for the paladins to shoot the ogre, but the paladins panic and are made of fail. Thankfully Sir Ansgar owns the ogre and is victorious. Shondo is impressed, because Shondo is awesome.

Post-ogre-ownage, the Grand Vizier enters. He is not impressed and is fabulous in his disappointment. The club can't even handle him right now.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Greta van der Rol

I'm pleased to have Greta van der Rol as my guest today. Like last week's guest, Greta is a member of the SFR Brigade and is included in the Nebula Nights boxed set. (I have my copy! It's only $0.99, people!) Greta is an Australian author who posts gorgeous photos of the lorikeets in her backyard on Facebook, which I am completely envious of. The most interesting birds we get around here are the occasional blue jay.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Most of my books are action-packed space operas, but I've written two paranormal romances (Black Tiger and White Tiger) and a historical fiction novel which was actually the first of my books published.

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Quest Episode 1-4 Recap: Battle Dome

"You saved the queen--my queen. And I thank you for that. The kingdom thanks you for that." --Sir Ansgar
And yet, nobody seems to be investigating who poisoned the queen. Someone call CSI.

Anyway, we open with the paladins earning xp for their trade skills again, and then an alarm goes up! Everyone grabs weapons and hops awkwardly into ill-fitting armor. Thankfully this was just a drill--and the paladins all failed! Sneaky, Sir Ansgar. Though really, if the enemy can breach your defenses that fast, Everealm is seriously screwed.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The SFR Brigade Presents: Morningstar Snippet 4

Welcome to this week's SFR Brigade Presents! For more of this week's excerpts please go here.

I believe that after this round the SFR Brigade Presents will be taking a few weeks off, but fear not, dear readers. More Morningstar snippets will be available for your reading pleasure during the Virtual Book Tour hosted by Goddess Fish promotions in September. And I'll be giving away a $25 Amazon gift card to one lucky winner during the tour, so you'll want to stick around for that. ;)

In this snippet Bryn enters the ship's mess hall and discovers Malcolm, an indexer (and former client) who was rescued from the jump station. Malcolm is featured in the third Cy'ren book, Sunsinger, and he's my favorite character in the trilogy. Absent-minded computer genius with glasses? Yes, please. ;)
“What are you working on?”

“Decrypting files for the captain. Slaver files. Something they found at their last stop. It’s not difficult, just time consuming. I can’t resume my search for the Lazarus data until we reach Cyprena.”

“Lazarus data?” she asked.

“It’s why the mercenaries were after me. I…oh, I probably shouldn’t say more. But Lieutenant Commander Harrow can tell you about it.” Malcolm yawned and rubbed his eyes, and then scratched at the high collar of his shirt as though his skin itched. He always seemed to be drowning in layers of mismatched clothing.

“When was the last time you slept?” Bryn asked.

He shrugged. “Been awhile. I don’t remember.”

“Okay. Here’s the deal. Put the work away. Eat your food, and then get some rest. You can start fresh after that.”

“Are you going to put me to bed?” he asked absently, and then winced. “Not like that. I mean…”

Bryn laughed. “I know what you meant. Alexi looked after you like I look after Sabine, didn’t he?”

“Yes.” He sighed with clear relief.

Bryn speared a mouthful of food. Bland, but hot. Better than most of the food she’d had the last few years. “Try it, it’s not bad,” she encouraged.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Veronica Scott

My guest today is Veronica Scott, best-selling author and “SciFi Encounters” columnist for the USA Today Happy Ever After blog. She's very cool, and my inner NASA nerd was full of squee when I read in her bio that she received the NASA Exceptional Service Medal. (Seriously people, whenever NASA would call the office looking for my professor/boss I would be all fangirl "OMG, NASA is on the phone!") I'm very excited to have Veronica here today. :)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I write in two genres – science fiction romance and ancient Egyptian romance with a touch of paranormal. I put a lot of action and adventure into every book, no matter which universe I’m writing in. There will always be a strong, capable heroine and the man who loves her. My heroes tend to be military, and come from the Special Forces of their time, whether it be the far future, or a group I call Pharaoh’s Own Guards in the stories set in ancient Egypt. I don’t write straight historical romance because I like to include the gods and goddesses in the action, so I take a few other liberties as well. I take turns between writing SFR and the ancient Egyptian stories.

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Quest Episode 1-3 Recap: Save the Queen

“I do not take orders from you.” Vizier, to Sir Ansgar.
Careful there, Ansgar. Pretty sure the Vizier outranks you in the chain of command.

When last we left our heroes, the Queen had been damseled! I mean poisoned. Same thing, really… Anyway, Paladin Adria was suspicious of the Vizier, because he lacked the knowledge to cure the queen. The Vizier is suspicious of the paladins. Personally, I agree with him. One of them is far more likely to be a mole than the Vizier is to be the poisoner. Come on, people. He’s the magic user. He has high INT, high Wisdom. He wouldn’t poison someone while standing next to them. That’s a rookie villain mistake.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The SFR Brigade Presents: Morningstar Snippet 3

Welcome to this week's SFR Brigade Presents! Want more sci-fi snippets? You can find this week's excerpts here.

When we last left Bryn and Jace, they were dueling. (Again, you can read more of this scene at the excerpt on the Samhain site.) Here we have the aftermath of the fight.
“Strip.” Bryn unbuckled her belt and set it aside, and Jace frowned, certain he had heard incorrectly.


“Get naked, Morningstar. I’m not letting you near Sabine when you’re this riled. You’ll hurt her, she’ll let you, and then I’ll have to kill you. Seems a bad way to start our relationship. So strip.”

Bryn walked away and sat on a bench to remove her boots as Jace blinked at her. The bluntness of her words stunned him for a moment, overriding the lust that fogged his brain.

“Now? Here?” Dueling in the armory was one thing, taking his new mate on the deck was another matter entirely.

“Yes. What’s wrong, Second Son? Need a pillow?” Bryn set her boots aside and rose, reaching for the zipper of her coverall.

“No.” At least he assumed he didn’t. “But—”

“You have done this before, right?” she teased with a smirk.

Jace hesitated, torn between the desire to be truthful versus the ease of repeating the lie. He had carefully cultivated his façade—unlike the other male Cy’ren aboard the Talon, Jace didn’t indulge in the pleasures of females eager to show their gratefulness for their newfound freedom. He claimed that he had high standards in a lover, preferring quality over quantity, but the truth was that he had avoided taking a lover for the same reasons he hadn’t taken a mate. Any affection he showed for a female could be used against him by Wylarric, and he refused to endanger an innocent because of his brother’s paranoia.

Until now. Though considering the ease with which Bryn had dropped Jace, he was certain that his brother’s men wouldn’t stand a chance against her blade.

Bryn’s brow rose at his silence. “You have, haven’t you? Or are you a virgin?”

“Well, technically, yes, I am,” he admitted, deciding upon honesty. She was his mate, and deserved the truth. “Though I am familiar with the concepts involved.” Jace cleared his throat as his face heated with an embarrassed blush. “Please don’t repeat that. Commander Soth barely respects me as it is.”

“You’re serious?”


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Amanda Young

Today's guest is bestselling author Amanda Young! She writes in a variety of sub-genres and has excellent taste in music. (Seriously, you should check out her web site.) I'm glad to have her here today. :-)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I mostly stick with contemporary, although I will write the odd paranormal title now and then when the mood strikes.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

5 Reasons You Should Watch The Quest

I love role-playing games--tabletop, live action, mmorpgs, PC games, console games. I’ve slain many pixelated dragons and been the hero of several fictional kingdoms. When I first heard about ABC’s new show The Quest, I was instantly filled with fangirl squee and the show hadn’t even premiered yet.

Imagine if you will a mashup of a Survivor-type reality competition where contestants compete in challenges to save themselves from elimination, but instead of taking place on a remote island the setting is a magical kingdom called Everealm. Not just any magical kingdom, but one that is threatened by the forces of evil, and the contestants are responsible for saving it.

This show had me at hello, and here are five reasons you should be watching it too:

Monday, August 11, 2014

Lady Jane and the Virgin Reader

Last week I was a guest reader at Lady Jane's Salon - Naperville, along with authors Sarah M. Anderson and Shannyn Schroeder and special guest Bobbi Dumas. It was awesome and terrifying, and here are a few of the details of the evening.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The SFR Brigade Presents: Morningstar Snippet 2

It's SFR Brigade Presents time, yay! You can find more of this week's sci-fi romance snippets shared here.

Last week I shared a snippet from Morningstar where Bryn meets Captain Hawke (a heroine in Nightfall). And then I saw Guardians of the Galaxy, and I thought you might enjoy something a little more action-packed. Do you like epic space battles and blue aliens with swords and laser pistols kicking all available butt? Then I suspect that you'll enjoy the Cy'ren Rising trilogy. ;)

Here we have Lieutenant Brynnaren Viera about to beat the snot out of Morningstar's hero, Lieutenant Commander Najacen Harrow. (You can read more of this scene in the excerpt at the Samhain site.)
Lieutenant Viera stood in the center of the armory, calmly checking the edge of her blade. A trickle of blood went ignored as it slid down the side of her neck from a scratch at her throat. The enticing scents of blood and phase pheromones mixed in the air and Jace growled low. How was he supposed to fight when he couldn’t think straight?

“Ready?” Bryn set her stance and raised her blade.

Jace drew his sword. “What are your victory conditions?”

“You yield or I knock you unconscious. Or I kill you, though I’d rather not. I don’t think Captain Hawke would appreciate that.”

“She might. She threatens it often enough.”

“So you have a problem with women in authority?”

“No.” Jace slowly circled right, and she moved left, matching him step for step. “I have a problem with authority.”

He lunged, and she parried and came at him. His eyes widened as she rained a flurry of blows that drove him back—she was strong and damn fast. That must have been where Soth went wrong. Soth probably assumed he could overpower her, and she struck at him with the speed of a viper. Thankfully Jace was also fast, and he defended himself before going on an offensive of his own. He had to be fast to compete among his brethren, as the other shadow swords tended to be broader and burlier, like Soth. Most of them were born to fight for their house, but Jace had been born to lead it.

Bryn hissed as his blade sliced through the sleeve of her coverall, and she retaliated with a kick to his shin that staggered him. Off-balanced, he fell flat on his back as she connected with another kick, and she leapt on him and pinned him to the floor.

“Did you buy that pretty sword of yours? Doesn’t seem like you earned it,” Bryn taunted.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Sarah M. Anderson

Today's guest is the always fabulous Sarah M. Anderson. I had the good fortune to share a table with her at the Spring Fling book signing, where we pounced on people like promo sharks. Sarah was one of the readers at the August Lady Jane's Salon-Naperville (along with Shannyn Schroeder and special guest Bobbi Dumas) (and me) (I'm going to post about that next week). Sarah had puppets. You're all sad that you weren't there, because it was awesome.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Oh, it’d be fun to write contemporary spicy space ninjas! But I’m more than happy to settle for contemporary, sexy, snarky Cowboys and Indians. It’s not a great book until you’ve got a shirtless cowboy (who can also be the Indian) riding on horseback, in my opinion. My Harlequin Desires may not have as many Cowboys or Indians (although I work them in when I can), but they’re still full of strong men who live by their own moral code, which is what I find most sexy about a cowboy in the first place!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The SFR Brigade Presents: Morningstar, Cy'ren Rising Book 2

Greetings! As part of this week's SFR Brigade Presents I'm sharing a snippet from my second Cy'ren Rising book, Morningstar. The Cy'ren Rising trilogy is a spicy space opera filled with epic space battles, laser gunfights, and steamy romance. Here's a bit from the scene where Morningstar's heroine Bryn meets Captain Carmen Hawke, a heroine from Nightfall.
The doors to the med bay opened as the doctor treated her, and Bryn tensed as a human woman entered.

“I’m Captain Hawke. Don’t worry, I ordered the males to stay away.” Like Bryn she was tall for a female, but she had a human’s bland skin tone—a sort of bronzed beige. The captain’s face was marred by an old burn scar, but Bryn was most interested in the Cy’ren markings inked in black on the side of her throat. No slave marks, and she bore odd heritage runes, but she had two mate marks from House Sunsinger.

“I won’t let them take her,” Bryn blurted.

“Agreed. My mate, Talena, was in phase recently. I understand how difficult that can be. I won’t let anything be forced on your friend,” Captain Hawke said.

“Sabine is my mate,” Bryn corrected. “I’ve never heard of a human with Cy’ren mates.”

“Well, now you have. And you are?”

“Brynnaren Viera, shadow sword of House Wintersend. I served as a lieutenant aboard the Sabre.”

“I’m not familiar with that ship.”

“The Sabre was destroyed almost six years ago. Five of us made it to an escape pod. We were captured. I don’t know what happened to the others after—” Bryn stopped, the words vanishing as her throat squeezed shut. After I was sold. She rather hoped her crewmates were dead. Death would have been an honorable end, and easier to bear than the hell she’d been through.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Pippa Jay

Pippa Jay is one of the awesome authors of the SFR Brigade, and I'm excited to have her here today. :) (The Tales from the SFR Brigade anthology is a free read, and it's very cool. You want to read it. I discovered many new-to-me sci-fi romance authors thanks to it.) Pippa's new book Tethered is out now. Check out that gorgeous cover!

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

For my latest release I'd say spicy space opera action adventure romance. Hmm, too many words?! Mostly I'd describe them as high action, character driven adventures, sometimes with romance.

2. Where do you get your inspiration?

Absolutely anywhere and from everything. But for Tethered it started off with a conversation on Twitter about under-represented mythological creatures. I had a vague idea for a succubus story, which I then put a scifi twist on.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Tracey Devlyn

I'm thrilled to have Tracey Devlyn as my guest today. Tracey is a co-founder of Lady Jane’s Salon-Naperville along with Adrienne Giordano, who was interviewed here last week.

Tracey is an award-winning author who writes historical romantic thrillers, which as she puts it involve "a slightly more grievous journey toward the heroine’s happy ending." (BFF Diana, take note, for this is your catnip.) Tracey's answer to question 3 is awesome. I think it's my new favorite answer. ;) I just started reading her book A Lady's Revenge.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I write sexy historical romantic suspense novels. My heroines tend to be unconventional for the Regency period – spy, underground informant/entrepreneur, apothecary-surgeon...

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Nancy Drew and The Mystery of the Future Romance Reader

As I mentioned in my TBT post, I've been cleaning out the attic and I discovered boxes of the books I read when I was a kid. I found my Little House books, my Anne of Green Gables books, a plethora of stories about horses, my Babysitter's Club books, and, of course, Nancy Drew.

Reading the Nancy Drew mysteries was the first literary connection I shared with my mom. She read them in the 60s, and she gave me her books. I became addicted to The Nancy Drew Files. I spent my allowance on new releases and combed through the library for titles I'd missed.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Adrienne Giordano

Today's guest is USA Today best-selling author Adrienne Giordano. Adrienne founded the Naperville satellite of Lady Jane's Salon along with fellow author Tracey Devlyn. (Tracey will be an Author Thursday guest here soon!)

Adrienne is talking about the second book in her Justice Team series. I'm currently reading the first book, Stealing Justice, and it's good stuff. Fans of romantic suspense should definitely check it out. :)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Historical? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

My flavor would be spicy-light. I write romantic suspense and I’ve been told my books are steamy, but I honestly don’t think they’re that steamy. Maybe I shouldn’t be saying that! :)

I honestly believe my books are more about the sexual tension and the push-pull between the hero and the heroine and that creates the steam. I also like to include a bit of humor in my dialogue. Particularly with the men. On any given day, the conversations between men and their friends can be funny so I try to infuse that into my books.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Harlequin World's Best Romances from 1996

I've been cleaning out the attic lately, and I discovered these Harlequin's World's Best Romances magazines. (Also, I found the first romance novel I officially read!) (As opposed to the actual first romance I read, which I have no idea what the title, author, or plot was, other than it was contemporary 2-books-in-1 combo that I snuck out of my mom's nightstand.)

Behold, the awesome:

March/April 1996: Is she sleeping? Melting? I love her jeans. I think I owned those jeans. And guys, please to enjoy this bonus art from the back cover:

Him: My neckerchief, let me show you it. Her: *swoon*

Ain't nothin' sexier than a man in a bright yellow shirt with a green neckerchief. Amirite, ladies? Even that horse is checking him out.

May/June 1996: Is that the same guy from the last issue? Scandalous! :-o Look at his perfect hair. The giant dad wristwatch. The random man ring. The fabulous high-waist jeans. So much light denim. I'm guessing that her inner monologue is "I can see up your nose."

July/August 1996: OMG IS THAT THE HOFF??? Also, she looks like she's about to burst into song, doesn't she? "THE HILLS ARE ALIVE, WITH THE SOUND OF DENIM..." And neckerchiefs. Because reasons.

September/October 1996: Behold the 90s businesswoman's power suit. I'm pretty sure Scully wore this outfit on an episode of X-Files.

I also found an absolutely fabulous treasure trove of 90s Nancy Drews. Oh yes. The khaki shorts, people. THE WHITE SNEAKERS. I will share them at some point soon.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Poison in the Blood VBT: Week 4 Recap

We're nearing the end of the Poison in the Blood virtual book tour. In case you missed it, this week I was spotlighted at Cover Reveals, and I shared my Top 10 favorite Emily quotes at Darkest Cravings.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Victoria H. Smith

As I have mentioned before, I love being an RWA member because I get to meet and hang out with fabulous authors. Here's a picture from the 2012 Chicago-North Spring Fling with three of my local chapter members, including the very awesome Victoria H. Smith. (Victoria is between me and BFF Diana. It was Victoria's first conference. We drove, and she survived me and Diana singing in the car.)

I'm thrilled to have Victoria as my guest today, and she's talking about her new release Found by You. It's out now, people! Go forth and buy it! ;)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

I think it’s safe to say I’ve definitely touched on a lot of different flavors in my writing. From epic battles with extraterrestrials to drama-filled, sexy contemporary romances. They’re all blanketed under the “new adult” (NA) category; meaning, I write stories about young people in that in between stage of youth and adulthood. The common theme is they are all just trying to find their way, make their mark on the world.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Starry Nights Blog Hop

Welcome to the SFR Brigade's Midsummer Blog Hop! The hop is offering several great grand prizes to celebrate, including a copy of my spicy space opera Nightfall and an advanced copy of the second book in the series, Morningstar. And I'm revealing the cover for the third book in the trilogy, Sunsinger!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Poison in the Blood VBT: Week 3 Recap

I can't believe that the tour is more than half over. Where did June go? But there's still plenty of time to enter the giveaways!

This week I was spotlighted at Houston Havens, Share My Destiny, and Books and Tales.

I shared a character profile of Emily at Paranormal Romance Fans for Life.

I was interviewed by Deb Sanders, and talked about my favorite role-playing games and my plans for future books.

I was interviewed at Butterfly-o-Meter Books, and they gave Poison in the Blood a 4 butterfly review:
All in all, it was a fun, fast-paced read without becoming obnoxiously agitated, and if you’re into some mystery solving, historical-flavored London settings and magic happenings, this is definitely for you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Poison in the Blood by Robyn Bachar

Poison in the Blood

by Robyn Bachar

Giveaway ends July 01, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Rena Koontz

Recently my RWA chapter member Rena Koontz tagged me in the My Writing Process blog tour, and I asked that she do a guest interview for me. Thankfully she said yes, and I'm thrilled to have her here today. :) She's awesome, and look at the gorgeous book cover for The Devil She Knew! I love that cover. It's so striking.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

First of all, Robyn, thank you for inviting me to share your blog space today. Your first question made me smile. I write romantic suspense and, since I’m one-hundred percent Italian, I like things hot and spicy. My writing is like the traditional pot of Sunday sauce –put it on the stove to simmer slowly, adding ingredients gradually, until it’s done just right. Sometimes, the recipe calls for adding meat or sausage, sometimes not; different tomatoes might require more or less seasoning. My writing is like that – sometimes just a hint of romance and other times, full blown passion. Maybe just a clue about the bad guy or a full-blown parking lot shootout. I’m always striving for the perfect recipe.

Monday, June 16, 2014

What I've Been Reading Lately: EIKAL Edition

According to Goodreads I'm 19 books ahead of schedule for my 2014 reading challenge. :-o I've read 42 books so far this year. w00t!

As I mentioned in my Spring Fling post, Sarah Wendell was signing books and Diana and I got our copies of Everything I Know About Love I Learned from Romance Novels (or EIKAL) signed. Because I am a huge Sarah Wendell fangirl, I decided to read the books on the shopping list included in EIKAL. And yay, several of them already lived on my TBR bookcase. :)

So here's where I am so far in reading the EIKAL list:

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Poison in the Blood VBT: Week 2 Recap

In case you missed it, this week on the Poison in the Blood virtual book tour I was spotlighted at Penny for Them, Sapphyria's Book Reviews, Lisa's World of Books, and For Your Literary Pleasure.

I was a guest at Roxanne's Realm, and I talked about "Goblin Market" the poem that inspired Poison in the Blood.

I was interviewed by Pembroke Sinclair.

And I was a guest at Jill Archer's blog, and I took the opportunity to interview Emily. (Emily is appalled that I don't drink tea.)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with R. T. Wolfe

One of the things I love most about being an RWA member is the opportunity to meet and chat with other authors, and they are always friendly, awesome people. R. T. Wolfe is an excellent example of that--she's one of the nicest people you could ever meet. And she has a golden retriever. (I love goldens.) :) If you enjoy romantic suspense, you should definitely check her books out.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

My writing is definitely contemporary. It’s been called spicy, but that seems to be subjective. I often describe the romance as PG-13. My books often incorporate secondary characters, family, and some kind of mystery.

Monday, June 9, 2014

My Writing Process--Blog Tour

Today I'm taking part in the My Writing Process Blog Tour. (Really it's more of a hop than a tour.) Anyway, as you may have guessed from the title, this blog tour focuses on authors answering questions about their writing process. My friend and RWA chapter member Rena Koontz posted her entry last week. You can check it out here:

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Poison in the Blood VBT: Week 1 Recap

Poison in the Blood is now available in print and ebook, yay! Remember, you can order it here:
  • Amazon
  • Barnes and Noble
  • Books-A-Million
  • Samhain Publishing (You can got 50% off the print book at the Samhain store when you use the code PAPERBACK50 at checkout, valid for a limited time only.)(Prefer ebooks? You can get 30% off the ebook at the Samhain store when you use the coupon code POISON14, valid until 01-01-15.)
In case you missed it, this week I was spotlighted at Deal Sharing Aunt, 3 Partners in Shopping, and Cassandra M's Place.

I have a letter to the readers at Night Owl Reviews, where I ask the question: Would you marry a vampire? And I discussed the question further as a guest at Fang-tastic Books.

Next week there will be more guest pots, more spotlights, and more chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Poison in the Blood by Robyn Bachar

Poison in the Blood

by Robyn Bachar

Giveaway ends July 01, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Cora Cade

Cora Cade is made of awesome. Seriously, people. She has a dog named Hans Gruber, and if that doesn't win the Internet I don't know what does. I'm beginning to suspect that she was cloned from the same alien pod as me and BFF Diana. :-o

That said, I'm super excited to have her as my guest today. :-) (She also uses the magic words: Chris Hemsworth.) (And also sexy bearded men.)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Contemporary? Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Well, I write Contemporary. The sweet and steamy kind. Currently I'm writing a series focused around a little lake in North Carolina. There may or may not be a ridiculously hot wounded Army Ranger fashioned after Chris Hemsworth in book one.

But I read across all genres. Crazy Harry Dresden fan girl? Right here. Love a sweet and quirky Julia Quinn historical? I own them all. Tattooed hot guy on the cover? Oh, yeah. And if there's a ninja somewhere, then I'm down with that too.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Poison in the Blood Print Release Day!

Poison in the Blood is now available in print! And the print edition includes the novella The Importance of Being Emily, so it's two books in one! You can pick up a copy here:

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Katharine Tree

Today's guest is debut author Katharine Tree, and she's talking about her novel Dark and Deep. BFF Diana and I have known her for years (many years, for Diana)(I believe the words "summer camp" may be involved). She's very cool, and I wish her many book sales. ;)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

It’s homesteading adventure with what I’ve heard called “strong romantic elements”. The characters are contemporary people, but they’ve thrown themselves into an Iron Age micro-society. The adjustment is jarring and brings out the... hrm… interesting aspects of their personalities. The narrator’s relationship with the hero is at the core of the story, and there are several spicy scenes, but they’re diagnostic of what is happening with the rest of the characters’ lives and with the settlement as a whole. The hero is Scottish and there are limited amounts of kilt-wearing and Gaelic-speaking, so I suppose it qualifies as Scotsploitation too.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Gamify your life. Slay your word count.

I'm always looking for new ways to motive me to get my butt into the chair and write. Because lo, the Internet doth beckon, and too often I answer its call. ("Just one more page of lolcats and then I'll write. Honest!") I don't seem to have a problem making my word count during National Novel Writing Month, because I'm motivated to win, even when winning means I get a few winner icons and a T-shirt.

I come from a family of athletes, so wanting to win is in my DNA. I have zero athletic ability, so this desire generally manifests in my love of rpgs. I want to slay the dragon. ALL THE DRAGONS! I want to kill every dragon in the dungeon and walk out with a pack full of magic items and buckets of coin. BEHOLD MY PIXELATED GLORY!

As such, HabitRPG is my new favorite thing.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Delilah Devlin

My guest today is USA Today best-selling author Delilah Devlin, who has a new book out this week in her Delta Heat series with Samhain. She has quite possibly my favorite answer to the "what flavor is your writing?" question, so I think you're all going to enjoy this interview. :)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Not that I’m all that self-aware (friends call my completely oblivious!), but I’d guess I’m on the extremely spicy side. Like Serrano peppers vs. jalapenos. And even when I write dark and edgy, there has to be humor intermixed with the action, otherwise I’d be bored.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Poison in the Blood Virtual Book Tour

Poison in the Blood is going on a virtual book tour to celebrate the print release. You can win a signed copy of PitB and a $25 Amazon gift card! It will be awesome.

Here are the tour stops:

June 2: Fang-tastic Books
June 3: Deal Sharing Aunt
June 4: 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too!
June 5: Cassandra M's Place
June 6: Night Owl Reviews
June 9: Pembroke Sinclair
June 10: Roxanne’s Realm
June 11: Lisa’s World of Books
June 12: Jill Archer and For Your Literary Pleasure
June 13: Sapphyria's Book Reviews and Penny For Them...
June 16: Paranormal Romance Fans for Life
June 17: Houston Havens
June 18: Deb Sanders
June 19: Share My Destiny and Books & Tales
June 20: Butterfly-o-Meter Books
June 23: Corazones Literarios
June 24: Cover Reveals
June 25: Beverly @ The Wormhole
June 26: Marsha A. Moore and Eclipse Reviews
June 27: Little Read Riding Hood and Darkest Cravings
June 30: Writing from Corsets to Bustiers and Immortality and Beyond
July 1: Urban Fantasy Investigations and Paranormal Romance and Authors That Rock

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Keith Melton

Keith Melton is an evil genius. The best kind of evil genius--an author. I'm a huge fan of his Nightfall Syndicate series, and his book The Zero Dog War is on my list of books I'd want if I was stranded on a desert island. It's just that awesome. (Here's a quote from my Goodreads review: "It's like all of my urban fantasy favorites thrown in a blender and turned into an addictive alcoholic beverage.") YES.

Harrison loves Blood Vice. Everyone loves Blood Vice!

Warning: Put your coffee down now. Don't make the same mistake I did and end up nasing it while reading this interview. Damn you, Keith Melton! *shakes fist*

1. What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Space Action Ninjas. Or, as we like to say in the biz, SAN. We have a diametrically opposing viewpoint to those degenerate Space Inaction Ninja bastards, because, honestly, what is more boring than a ninja who does nothing? They’re like Romulans who never decloak at the worst possible time for the Enterprise. Yawn.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Read some good books lately?

I've been making huge progress in my 2014 Reading Challenge, so that's awesome. Though I have to admit that I really haven't dented my massive TBR bookcase, because I keep bringing new books into the house. Yes, I have an addiction. Though many of those books are library books, so that helps, right?

Except for all those ebooks... but they were 99 cents!

I'll stop now.

What I've been reading lately...

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Paige Tyler

I've spent time hanging out with Paige Tyler at the last few Lori Foster Reader and Author Get Togethers, and Paige is one of the nicest people I have ever met. Seriously. If you have the chance to chat with her at a conference or signing you definitely should, because she's awesome. :) (And Paige and her husband are adorable together. That's him in the background of the photo helping her at a past RAGT signing.)

I'm excited to have Paige as my guest today, and she's talking about her new book Her Perfect Mate which is out this week!

1. What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

Hmm. I think my tagline says it best—“Hunky Heroes, Kickbutt Heroines, Unforgettable Romance.” Add in some steamy sex, nail-biting suspense and pulse-pounding action, and that pretty much sums it up!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Keep Calm and Carry On

First, Poison in the Blood got a 4-star review from RT Book Reviews! w00t!

"The second installment of the Emily Chronicles brings fans right back into the dark, imaginative world of a London filled with magic and the fascinating characters who control it. Emily Black is a strong, courageous heroine, with a moral compass that serves her well as loyalties begin to shift around her and her marriage evolves in ways she never could have imagined. Bachar keeps the plot moving along nicely, and her inventiveness makes the world of this story come to life."

So cool. :) Remember, you can get 30% off the ebook of Poison in the Blood at the Samhain store when you use the coupon code POISON14 at checkout. I'll stop now...

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Leah Braemel

Leah Braemel holds a special place in my heart because she was next to me at my very first book signing. We bonded over imported chocolate (imported by her, from Canada). ;) I really enjoyed her Hauberk Protection series, and I'm thrilled to have her as my guest today.

1. What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

It depends upon the book, some books are spicier than others. I have quite a few erotic romances, several involving ménages. But my latest series of westerns—The Grady Legacy—are more mainstream contemporary westerns. While the love scenes are explicit, the sex isn’t the main focus. I love reading stories that have a good strong external plot, so that’s the only type I can write. At the moment all my stories, erotic or regular, are contemporary, with the exception of Tangled Past which is a historical romance and it is a connected story to Texas Tangle.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Spring Fling 2014: Part Two

Random disclaimer: The Internet messes with your head. Specifically, social media. At this moment I follow 764 people on Twitter, mostly other authors and industry professionals, so at conferences I see a lot of names and faces that I recognize but can't figure out how I know them. I pretty much suck at remembering names to begin with, so my apologies if I met you/missed you at the Spring Fling and didn't realize it.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Spring Fling 2014: Part One

The Chicago-North Spring Fling Writers Conference took place this weekend. This was my fourth trip to the SF (and BFF Diana's third), and I have a lot of love for this conference. The SF was the first conference I attended, the 2008 Fire and Ice was my first contest win, and the 2012 SF was my first local book signing. I had a fun time, and as always the organizers did a great job of putting everything together.

So here's the round-up of this year's adventures. :) (An abbreviated round-up, apologies to anyone/anything I left out.)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Yolanda Sfetsos

Today's guest is awesome author Yolanda Sfetsos, who has a new book out this week from Samhain! w00t! And, in case you didn't know, new releases are always 30% off at the Samhain store. Good book, great savings, what's not to like? ;) And the cover is gorgeous! Kanaxa does the best covers. (I know, because she's created all of mine.) ;)

1. What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

The flavor of my writing would have to be otherworldly. I write in several genres—urban fantasy, SFR, horror, futuristic, whatever strikes me. All of my stories have several things in common. The supernatural always manages to squeeze itself in there somehow (because I love toeing the line between light and dark), romance is usually a big factor (because without love there’s not much of a story), secrets (because uncovering hidden secrets is fun), plus I enjoy throwing some action into the mix.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Fling 2014

The Chicago-North Spring Fling is this weekend, w00t! And I will be signing books there on Saturday, April 26th, from 9:30-10:30 am, along with this list of fabulous authors: And I'm bringing a few ARCs of Poison in the Blood to give away. And free chocolate! And Samhain swag! Be there or be square!

I've been attending the Spring Fling since 2008 (before Blood, Smoke and Mirrors was published, it took first place in its category in the Fire & Ice contest). There have been many memorable Spring Fling moments. Like in 2010 when I lost my dorky fangirl mind at Sarah Wendell. I generally have an over-excited Golden Retriever moment at one author per conference, and SB Sarah was the lucky winner that year.

BFF Diana and I spent much of the 2012 Spring Fling stalking our girlcrush Tiffany Reisz, who we love and worship and have the T-shirts. (BFF Diana and I are going to be on our best behavior this year. We promise. Serious face is serious.) 2012 also featured my first book signing in Illinois, which my loud, boisterous, and extremely proud of me family totally ALL showed up at, causing me to get the stink eye from other authors. I promise there'll be less family this time. Again, serious face is serious. (I can't promise that my mom won't go from table to table informing everyone that her daughter is an author too. That's how she rolls.)

The book signing is open to the public. Hope to see you there on Saturday! ;)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Author Thursday: Interview with Cathy Pegau

If you follow me on Twitter you've probably noticed me crazy fangirl stalking author Cathy Pegau, because I adore her sci-fi romance series. I campaigned for her novel Caught in Amber during this year's DABWAHA, and she just barely missed going on to the second round by a handful of votes. (So close!) I'm thrilled to have her as my guest today.

1.What flavor is your writing? (Spicy? Action? Space odyssey? Ninjas? All of the above?)

The books I currently have out are all science fiction romance with a bit of suspense thrown in. Two have lesbian romances at their center and the other is het. I prefer to write speculative fiction, or at least tend to lean in that direction, but not always.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Lives Change at Your Library

This year National Library Week is April 13-19, and the theme is, "Lives change @ your library". (Yes, there's actually an @ in it. I'm not sure how I feel about that.)

The Berwyn Public Library played an important role in my development as a reader and a writer. I remember the glowing pride I felt when I received my first library card, and how I marveled at the responsibility of having something with my name on it. *I* was entrusted with the welfare of the books I checked out--not my parents--and I could choose what I wanted to read. It's empowering. A library card is like a TARDIS, giving the reader access to visit any time period and infinite worlds to explore.

I remember riding my pink Schwinn bike to the library on 16th Street and coming home with my basket filled with new books. The walk down the stairs to the children's section filled me with excitement. New books! To this day I'm excited by the promise of a new book. I love to wander the shelves and explore, looking for new series and new authors.

During college I worked in the main library at University of Illinois. I LOVED that job. The stacks are enormous--two buildings, ten floors each--and that's just the main library. According to the site:
The University Library holds more than thirteen million volumes and 24 million items and materials in all formats, languages, and subjects, including 9 million microforms, 120,000 serials, 148,000 audio-recordings, over 930,000 audiovisual materials, over 280,000 electronic books, 12,000 films, and 650,000 maps.
And I believe it, because I was a shelver. I also searched for books marked "not on shelf" for whatever reason. It's easy to lose a book in a library that enormous. I'd crawl all over looking for books that had fallen behind shelves, or that didn't fit on the shelf and were stacked on the floor. I loved that too. Me, rescuing knowledge and restoring it to the masses (you'd think I'd discovered the One Ring instead of a missing volume on crop production).

Libraries are so important to our communities. They offer not only books, but movies, music, Internet access, adult education programs, activities for kids and teens, tutoring, book clubs, writers groups, and more. Libraries are life changing.

What are your favorite library memories? Do you have a favorite local library?