Tuesday, September 29, 2009

SOLD!!! To Berkley Heat!!!

I'm thrilled to announce my fabulous agent has sold my darling Roman in a two book deal to Kate Seaver at Berkley Heat!

The books are scheduled for release in 2011.

Here's the scoop from Publisher's Marketplace:

Christina Phillips's HIS FORBIDDEN PRINCESS, in which a Roman centurion leads an invasion into Cambria, and the druid princess who both defies and enthralls him, to Kate Seaver at Berkley Heat, in a two-book deal, by Emmanuelle Alspaugh at Judith Ehrlich Literary Management.

And here's a slightly longer blurb!

As Rome conquers Cymru, Centurion Maximus falls under the spell of ethereal Druid princess, Carys. Charged by his Emperor to eliminate all cursed Druids before they rise up against their new masters, Maximus is unaware of her heritage and is determined to possess her and discover where she and her kin are hiding from the might of the Eagle.

Despite knowing he's the enemy of her people, Carys is fascinated by this commanding foreign invader, a barbarian who displays unexpected honor, and willingly meets him in secret to satisfy her desire for sexual pleasures. But when Maximus captures her heart her loyalties are twisted and freedom from Rome is no longer her single-minded obsession.

As the summer solstice approaches Aeron, the High Druid and ex-lover of Carys, gathers the dark gods to crush the enemy into oblivion, the Druids into submission and Carys to his will. Maximus and Carys must defeat the encroaching devastation, overcome the prejudice of their warring gods and opposing cultures and find a way for their love to survive.

Now I just have to write book two!!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Heads Up ~ Agent Interview

Tomorrow Shelley Munro has an interview with agent Holly Root from the Waxman Literary Agency. Holly is lovely (I queried her a couple of years ago and she was very nice!!!) so don't forget to pop over and soak up her words of wisdom!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

October Awesomeness!!!

My lovely writing friend, Eleni Konstantine, is holding a month long celebration in October, chatting about grants, conferences and more (see above!!) Not only will she be sharing heaps of information but she also has a stellar line up of guests who are giving away fantabulous prizes!

Eleni is also holding a contest - details below:

Place the icon on your blog or website from now until end October for your chance to win a trade book-cover.
with Spreading the Word in the subject line and the details of where you have displayed the image.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

WIN Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy Series

Over on the We Love YA blog, there's a fabulous contest going on. Here's the lowdown on the goodness!

And to celebrate our absolute awesomeness, we’re going to give away the whole Vampire Academy series, signed by Richelle Mead during her tour, as well as one extra copy (sadly, unsigned) of her latest, Blood Promise.

To enter, leave a comment telling us your favourite public place to indulge in a good book. For extra entries, mention this contest (and let us know where you did it). Each mention gets you one extra entry. Oh yeah, and you don’t have to be in Australia to enter. Just somewhere the postal service can reach.

Entries close on September 30th at 1 am AEST.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Historical Yumminess

I just want to give a shout out to the RWA Historical Loop I'm on. We've been having a BIAM during September and it's really helped motivate me in getting those words down. Well, last week our lovely co-ordinator Dana nominated me for a coveted chocolate heart as I had almost hit my target for three weeks on the trot! Yummy!!!

Yes, I'm completely shameless and will write for treats!!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Is the End in Sight?!

Just hit the 60k mark on the wip which is always a relief as I now know I have enough words to fill an entire book! Without fail, I always start off paranoid it will all be over and done with before I get to 30k (strangely enough, until I wrote Foretaste of Forever I'd never attempted a short story before. Or erotic romance!)

Now I guess I'd better let the muse start tying thing up and I certainly hope she knows what she's doing, because I haven't the faintest idea how my hero and heroine are going to get their HEA in this one!! The only reason I'm not totally pulling my hair out in a mad panic is because I didn't have a clue how my darling Roman was going to get his happy ending either, but thankfully the last 100 pages almost wrote themselves and it all got sorted. Don't you just love it when that happens!!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Good Sex Guide

Whoops! I've been a very bad blogger again. To make up for my absence I dug this up. Apparently it's an extract from a Sex Education Textbook from the UK, circa 1960. Read it and weep!! Seriously, is it for real? Did they really teach teenage girls to behave like this? I'd like to think it's all a big scam but I have a horrifying feeling it might be true!!

OK, here it is... and the italics are all mine...

Once you have both retired to the bedroom prepare yourself for bed as promptly as possible. Whilst feminine hygiene is of the utmost importance your tired husband does not want to queue for the bathroom as he would have to do for his train. But remember to look your best when going to bed.

Try to achieve a look that is welcoming without being obvious. If you need to apply face-cream or hair-rollers wait until he is asleep as this can be shocking to a man last thing at night.

When it comes to the possibility of intimate relations with your husband it is important to remember your marriage vows and in particular your commitment to obey him. If he feels that he needs to sleep immediately then so be it.

In all things be lead by your husband's wishes, do not pressure him in any way to stimulate intimacy.

Should your husband suggest congress then accede humbly all the while being mindful that a man's satisfaction is more important than a woman's. When he reaches his moment of fulfilment a small moan from yourself is encouraging to him and quite sufficient to indicate any enjoyment that you may have had.

Should your husband suggest any of the more unusual practices be obedient and uncomplaining but register any reluctance by remaining silent.

It is likely that your husband will then fall promptly asleep so adjust your clothing, freshen up and apply your night time face and hair care products. You may then set the alarm so that you can arise shortly before him in the morning. This will enable you to have his morning cup of tea ready when he awakes.


So is it for real?!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Romance Bookmark

I'm very excited to share that recently a group of authors have got together to start up a Yahoo group specifically for romance readers - called Romance Bookmark. The launch day is Monday14th September, but it's open now! Click on the link or there's a button on the sidebar that takes you right there.

So far the author moderators are Shelley Munro, Tessa Radley, Christina Phillips, Tawny Weber, Leah Braemel and Beth Andrews. Every so often we'll be holding contests to win print books and e-books and who knows what else!

Now, this isn't a promo loop, so there aren't going to be heaps of blurbs and excerpts. It's for readers and authors to discuss what you're reading now, books you love or don't and to generally chat in a friendly atmosphere.

So if you'd like to join the fun, please do! We'd love to see you over there!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Illusions of Destiny - Kiss Carson

Please welcome my special guest this week, fellow Aussie and The Wild Rose Press author, Kiss Carson, who's chatting about her recent release, Illusions of Destiny!

Kiss Carson has always loved stories that whisk her away from the real world and dump her right in the middle of a once in a lifetime adventure. Danger and love always seem to go hand in hand, along with a little bit of fantasy or paranormal. Her collection of dragons and knights give her inspiration, as does the ghost that lives in her bathroom. She lives in Queensland, Australia, with her very own dashing hero, two budding heroines and a hero in training (and Fred the Phantom Flusher).

Hi Kiss and thanks for stopping by today. Can you tell us a little about your debut book Illusions of Destiny?

Illusions of Destiny is a fantasy romance based in the early 16th century, in a different dimension. It follows the heroine, Ianna, as she travels through time and meets the man of her dreams, Regan Shay. Regan is part of a mythical race of winged people called sidhe. The evil queen of the sidhe is besotted with Regan and does everything she can to keep the two of them apart. There’s lots of action, romance and one of my favourite love scenes.


When Ianna Ward receives a mysterious parcel, she thinks someone is playing a trick on her. However, the contents of the 16th century chest transports her back in time to a different dimension where the sidhe, a mystical race of people, war with humans. She meets the mysterious and appealing Regan Shay, the sidhe leader, and her attraction to him is as powerful as his hypnotic gaze and devastating grin. But someone else has laid claim to Regan and will stop at nothing to keep him within her cruel grasp. With the help of unicorns, dragons and a cheeky Pegasus called Mercury, Ianna fights for love. Is she strong enough to battle destiny and change her life forever?

Oh, I love reading about different dimensions! How did the idea for the plot come about?

I really can’t remember EXACTLY what inspired me. I actually wanted to write a Scottish time travel ... Somehow, the hero grew wings and the heroine became a cynical divorcee. I think I was researching mythical animals one day because I wanted to somehow incorporate them into the storyline. Then, I came across the sidhe and fell in love with them. The rest, I made up as I wrote. (I’m a panster!)

I love sale stories (ok I am just nosy!!) so can you tell us about your road to publication - and your call story?

My road to publication **sigh** contained many, many, many rejections from both publishers and agents. Apparently my stories just didn’t fit the “mould” of a modern romance and because I write fantasy (with mythical beasts), the publishers believed their readers to be too intelligent for my sort of stories (true! I was told that by TWO publishers). Well, I started in earnest about two years ago and sent off my manuscript Jewels of the Sun to a private editor who loved it so much that she offered to help me self-publish. I rejected her offer because I’d picked up an agent in Melbourne who also loved Jewels of the Sun. Twelve months later, after a few more rejections, my agent dropped all her writers due to illness ... I’d just finished Illusions of Destiny and I was pretty much at an all time low. It was a case of get published or work full time (I work part time) and forget about writing - something I’d done all my life. I’m a member of the Romance Writers of Australia and one of their authors announced that she’d signed a contract at TWRP. Nearly at the end, I checked out the guidelines and Illusions of Destiny fit them perfectly! So, I sent off the first email and synopsis and had a reply within a week ... send the first three chapters ... ooooh! ... Two weeks later, another email, send the whole manuscript. Well! I was beside myself. I’d never been that far before and ... ooops, Illusions of Destiny needed a rewrite! I rewrote 85 000 words in seven days, sent it off and 4 weeks later, received the contract. I still can’t quite believe it and I’ve just signed my 2nd contract for Jewels of the Sun.

We are all about the love here, so please share your fave books, movies, TV shows or current fantasy squeeze (it's all in the line of research!)

My favourite book is A Touch of Enchantment by Teresa Medeiros. My favourite movies are Phantom of the Opera (2005), A Knight’s Tale, The Day After Tomorrow, and the Jurassic Park Trilogy ... I’m a bit of an action freak. I love Lost, Ghost Whisperer and Most Haunted. I really liked Life on Mars. My current fantasy squeeze ... too many to choose ... I like Eric Bana and mmmmm Gerard Butler.

What are you working on now?

At the moment, I’m working on two manuscripts. One is a novella of about 45 000 words. It’s a little bit HOT and contains a ménage. I know! I’ve never actually written erotica before and I’m not sure I’m very good at it. The second is another full length fantasy called Angel Magic.

An angel story! Yay!! How can readers keep up with your writing and books?

I have a website www.kisscarson.com.au and when I take off, I’ll send out newsletters every now and then.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Angelic Musings!!!

I was sitting here a moment ago kind of gazing at the all the little ornaments that are scattered between my keyboard and monitor and then it hit me. I was staring at an angel of Harmony my mother-in-law got me years ago. Behind that are a pair of white china cherubs my m-i-l gave me after we visited her back in the UK five years ago, and in front of them is a little angel of peace my eldest daughter gave me a few years ago. Over the other side of the monitor is an unnamed angel in amber in a be-ribboned box.

Now, if that wasn't enough! Behind me on my knick-knack shelves are four glass angels (from younger daughter three years ago) and a box of three blessing angels (eldest daughter, three years ago)

The very first book I wrote after moving to Australia, aimed at Harlequin Mills and Boon, was all about an amnesiac who thought she was an angel (but in fact was being guided by her guardian angel) (and yes, it was totally rejected by M&B as being unsuitable for any of their lines!!!)

So really, why did it take me so long to get back to writing about angels when they are everywhere I look?!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009


Okay! Well I really don't have anything to say today, but couldn't let this date slip by without acknowledging it!!! Although I think 08.08.08 is prettier I also think I managed to forget about that one last year.

So what's everyone been up to? I'm deep in my universe and loving it sooo much it's hard to re-emerge into the real one. It took a while to understand what my characters were up to, about 30k in fact which isn't usual for me as generally I tend to know them pretty well after the first few chapters. But not this time, it turned out the heroine had a sister and the hero a secret occupation, both which seriously impact on the entire plot!! And of course this means the beginning is going to need some ruthless tweaking at some point, so that should be fun(!)

Friday, September 04, 2009

Stone Cold Lover - Mel Teshco

Please welcome my special guest today, Mel Teshco, another Aussie debut author and another lovely lady I met through the RWA Paranormal loop a few years ago! Stone Cold Lover was recently released by Ellora's Cave.

Mel, welcome to the mad house! Please tell us a little about yourself.

I live on a semi-rural property with three horses and 3 cats (do fish count? lol) My husband works full time while I am now a full-time mother of three girls of wide-spread ages: Teagan, who is 19 and living with her boyfriend and who is about to make me a grandmother at the tender age of 39! Shannon, she’s 11 and way too smart for her own good. I seriously won’t be surprised if she becomes an author some time down the track. Codi, she’s just turned 2, a gorgeous cupcake who is also a whirlwind on legs! I also have three stepchildren, though Daniel, who is 16, is the only one who lives with us. He spends a lot of time sleeping!

Can you tell us a little about your book?

When I wrote this book I wanted to reveal a hero emotionally crippled by forces beyond his control. I wanted to portray him as steely hard and remote—particularly towards the heroine, hiding his sensitive side and an obsession with the heroine who is totally, completely, irrevocably unattainable.

Add a heroine who has used sex to fill a void in her life, a heroine who always gets what she wants, and let’s just say the sparks do fly. =)


Heiress Loretta Shaw is notorious for her loose morals and sexual needs. Trouble is, it’s taken her one too many one-night stands to realize that no man can extinguish the sexual fire she feels toward her guardian, Cray Diamond.

A long-ago curse made Cray immortal—a gargoyle, a guardian, who is impelled to protect a human, chosen by the curse. He is imprisoned in stone during daylight hours but the dusk returns him to flesh and bone, to carry out his immortal duty.

That Cray can shift between human and living gargoyle at night, bothers Loretta not one bit. She’s seen him naked many times and her desire for him—in any shape or form—knows no bounds. She’s tired of his resistance. He’s her gargoyle and she wants him in her bed.

Ooooh! I have this on my tbr pile, and it's my first gargoyle book! How did the idea for the plot come about?

I’m definitely not a plotter, and my stories almost always come from a scene or visual that I endeavour to turn into words. The rest of the story then flows from that one scene—well, it doesn’t always flow LOL! Stone-Cold Lover was the exception, where instead of a visual I mucked around with putting words on paper to create a simple, but dramatic curse. This was well before I knew fully what or who the characters would be. I did know—much as I love writing about werewolves and vampires—that for this paranormal story I wanted a hero who was just a little more unique.

That's a fascinating way to start a book, with a curse and build from there. Okay, I think everyone knows how much I love sale stories!! so can you tell us about your road to publication - and your call story?

The road to publication has been quite a long stretch. My first book I churned out with the dedication of a girl (I was nineteen or so) who imagined herself a brilliant writer, on the cusp on a fantastic career. Oh, how I wish I’d kept that manuscript now, just to see how far I really have come! (mind you, I’m sure in all that drivel there were occasional glimmers of greatness ) From there I wrote bits and pieces, but never really completed a whole story, and actually quit writing for a while to concentrate on family and health issues that knocked me off my feet for a good while. In that time I moved to QLD, a single mum with two daughters who were then nine years old and six months old, where we went through quite a healing process. Only then did I realize I truly needed to write again.

As for my call story, well, I’d pretty much talked myself into believing Stone-Cold Lover (originally titled Kissed by Stone) was going to be rejected by Ellora’s Cave. For a start, I’d written it for another publisher entirely, which meant vanilla sex (by EC standards) without all the descriptive, graphic words often used. When I read the subject line from EC’s editor saying “Kissed by Stone, Accepted” I think I very nearly swallowed my tongue! She said she’d have bought it immediately *except* that she wanted to know if I was willing to increase the sex and graphic content. (hell, yes!)

LOL! I love those swallow-the-tongue moments!! Who or what inspires you and why?

What doesn’t inspire me! I can sit and weep while watching a movie about someone down on his/her luck and yet taking a stand against all the odds. Ditto a h/h in a well written book doing the same. I really don’t care if its fiction or non-fiction, if I’m deep into a story, I’ll believe it for as long as I’m reading it. I have to say my eldest daughter, who really has fought against all the odds, also truly inspires me.

Where do you see yourself as a writer five years from now?

I plan on being a successful writer, whether it’s paranormal, erotica, mainstream or even category one day (who really knows??) I just want to be earning a living doing what I love! And if I’m still doing it at ninety (perhaps erotica!) then I’ll know it’s my passion that keeps me going.

Oh I completely agree. And especially about the writing of erotica at ninety! So what's the best, and worst, things about writing for you?

The best: I love creating characters, bringing them to life and making them believable, making a reader love them as much as I do (well, that’s the plan!). The worst is probably how much commitment it takes, (especially while juggling a family) not with just the writing, but the little non-essential details that I guess really aren’t trivial in the bigger scheme of things. (like blogs and emails and internet time)

I know what you mean, the promo side of things really does eat up the time. Is there any advice or light bulb moment you'd like to share about getting/being published?

My advice is to stick with it. Really stick with it! If writing is your passion, your dream, don’t let anyone who doesn’t understand it persuade you otherwise. Light bulb moment. Write, yes, but don’t be afraid to send off your ‘baby’ to competitions, and then more competitions. Don’t be too proud to listen to advice, weigh up criticisms logically (not ah, emotionally ), then polish until it sparkles—without losing your ‘voice’ in the process. Start sending it to agents and/or editors, it’s no good letting your work sit on your computer, in your desk, wherever. I believe many of us are subconsciously scared of success. I was trapped there for quite some time.

Great advice. Do you have critique partners (CPs)? If so can you tell us how you met up and your process?

I was part of an online critique group called Clayton Critters for quite some time, even shared list mom duties for part of it—hey guys! But I realized, after baby number three, I had to strip my writing and computer time down to the bare bones if I wanted to have my cake and eat it too. (IE: have time for my beautiful family and still give myself time to write). I’ve had a few CP’s in my time, one being Tracey O’hara when we both feeling our way in the paranormal genre, but with very big dreams between us =)

The process with my two current CP’s (hi Melissa and Karen!) is generally a chapter exchanged every month, though that’s been quite informal and even lax at times lol! And I still hope my old CP who has taken on motherhood for the first time, will return to the fold very soon HINT HINT!!

Catch up with Mel on the net:




Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Exciting Bits & Pieces

Just hit 30k on the current book and am happy about the way it's shaping up, especially since a couple of weeks ago I had no idea where it was heading! This flying into the mist is scary stuff!

In other news the lovely Cari Quinn has recently signed a contract for her erotic novella, Full Disclosure, with The Wild Rose Press! Congratulations Cari and welcome to the Scarlet Roses!

And more exciting news! Amanda Ashby's Zombie Queen of Newbury High was released in Australia and New Zealand today! Squee! Tomorrow we go on a zombie hunt!!