Friday, February 27, 2009

Two Weeks in the Magnate's Bed - Nicola Marsh




Please welcome my special guest this week, Harlequin Mills and Boon Romance and Modern Heat/Presents author, Nicola Marsh, who's chatting about her new release, Two Weeks in the Magnate's Bed! And for our viewing pleasure, Nicola's suggested the sexy Brandon Beemer! Mmm, must admit I love those blue eyes too!!!


As a girl, Nicola dreamed of being a journalist and travelling the world in search of the next big story. Instead, she chose a career in the health industry while honing her writing skills with a daily entry in a "not-so-secret" journal!

The inspiration for her first novel, THE TYCOON'S DATING DEAL, came from a magazine article on speed-dating and she sold this book in May 2003. It won the CataRomance Reviewers' Choice Award for Best Harlequin Romance 2004.

Nicola currently writes for Harlequin Mills and Boon Romance and Modern Heat/Presents series, has published 19 books and sold over a million copies worldwide.

She's a Waldenbooks & Bookscan bestseller, has finalled in several awards including the prestigious HOLT (Honoring Outstanding Literary Talent), Booksellers' Best, Golden Quill, Laurel Wreath, More than Magic and won several CataRomance Reviewers' Choice Awards.

When not writing, she's busy chasing after her two little heroes!



Hi Nicola, thanks for popping by today! Can you tell us a little about your book?

'Two Weeks in the Magnate's Bed' is loosely linked to my recent Waldenbooks Bestseller, 'The Boss's Bedroom Agenda'. In 'The Boss', Lana is the heroine's shy, geeky cousin. She featured in several scenes and definitely had a tale of her own to tell, so I sent her off on a South Pacific cruise where she meets a very sexy, very enigmatic sailor.



Zac McCoy is a charmer and Lana is soon floundering out of her depth. But this Cinderella may just have a few surprises in store for her Prince Charming yet...

'Two Weeks in the Magnate's Bed' (Harlequin Modern Heat) is out now in the UK, will hit Aussie/New Zealand shelves in May and the USA, as a Harlequin Presents, in September.

How did the idea for the plot come about?

I love cruising and actually fell in love for the first time on one. It was a magical experience filled with romance so little wonder I had to write about it...and no, it's not autobiographical!

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

I was working full time as a physiotherapist, had been for many years, and always used to say 'I'd love to write a book one day'. Was at work one day having lunch, got tired of saying it, so Googled 'romance writers in Melbourne'. Joined the Melbourne Romance Writers Guild, discovered there were people out there who loved writing as much as I did and I started submitting. My first partial, aimed at Harlequin Presents, was a positive rejection asking to see more work. My next partial...they requested the full...then 4 months later, I was home on a Saturday night, 5 months pregnant and dinner plans cancelled, when the phone rang. It was Kim Young from Mills and Boon! She said my voice was more suited to the Harlequin Romance series and requested a few revisions by the following Tuesday.



I did them, emailed the book off a day early and waited...A week later on the Monday, I was cooking dinner when the phone rang at 6.30. Hubby answered and gave me a thumbs up sign so I took the phone and...it was Kim saying she loved the book and wanted to buy it! I'm sure I repeated the word 'great' a hundred times during that first conversation!! Being an author is a dream come true :)

What a wonderful sale story! As you know, we're 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!)

Fave books: anything by Barbara Samuel (my fave is 'No Place Like Home'), anything by Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Adele Parks, Harlan Coben, Tess Gerritsen.
Fave movie: Dirty Dancing
Fave TV shows: 24, Prison Break, The Mentalist, Brothers and Sisters, Lie to Me
Current fantasy squeeze: oooh...toughie...Antonio Sabato Jnr. was the inspiration behind the book I just handed in, so I guess him. Though Brandon Beemer is going to feature in an upcoming book...love those blue eyes...

I'm a total sucker for guys with blue eyes *happy sigh* Can you tell us what you're working on now?

I've just finished revising my 20th book, a Modern Heat, and awaiting word from my editor. I'm about to start revisions on my next Harlequin Romance, 'The Dating Dilemma'.
Then it's onto writing something brand spanking new!

How can readers keep up with your writing and books?

I blog daily about all sorts of things, including writing stuff, so a visit to my blog is always handy.
Or readers can sign up for my newsletter, which I send out quarterly and around releases.
I also have a website, I'm on Facebook and MySpace. You can say I'm all over the place!


Links to Buy Mills & Boon

Amazon

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Madness of a Romance Writer

Yesterday afternoon I was doing a bit of research on the net, and came across a piece on a Roman amphitheatre which was constructed in South Wales around AD80. Hummm, I thought idly, that's a bit late for my time period, but interesting nevertheless.

I kept reading, as you do, and the next sentence casually hopped forward a couple of hundred years, describing how everything fell into ruin after the Legion abandoned Wales and moved further north.

This most ridiculous pain stabbed through my heart, and I actually thought, Ohmygod, Maximus and Carys would have died and been buried and forgotten by then.

Yep. I sat there, reading this article, getting all choked up that my hero and heroine were now dead.

I was so distressed, in fact, I went and told my two daughters and husband who proceeded to gape at me as if I'd lost my mind. Then they looked at each other and did the eyeball thing (tell me you know all about the Eyeball Thing?!)

But I'm not mad am I? Because our heroes and heroines are real people, aren't they?!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Zombie Queen Party!


It's almost March which means (apart from the odd fact that autumn arrives in March down under!) my good friend and excellent CP Amanda Ashby's Zombie Queen of Newbury High is about to hit the shelves!

To celebrate, Amanda's holding a ten day party over at her blog where lots of authors will be dropping in bearing gifts! Fun times. To be in with a winning chance all you have to do is leave a comment. I'm scheduled in for next Wednesday, but I'll remind everyone on the day so I'm not left over there all on my tod!!!There's also a chance of picking up a copy of Zombie Queen just by spreading the word of the party! So there you go, a fantastic start to the week!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sugar Shack - Paisley Scott



Please welcome my special guest this week, Scarlet Rose author Paisley Scott, who's chatting about her recent release, Sugar Shack!

Paisley Scott lives in Northwest Louisiana near the Texas border with her husband and three spoiled pups. Ever the romantic, she tries to infuse her steamy stories with heart-melting feelings (as well as lots of sex!) Paisley is also the alter-ego of romance writer, Leslie Ann Dennis, author of hot contemporaries.

Can you tell us a little about your book?

Well, it's actually part of an four-author anthology set to go to print late 2009. Jennifer Haley (our editor), hand-picked four of her authors (Ana Aragon, Devon Gray, April Vine and myself) to take part in this exciting anthology which is based on Dan Fogelberg's classic, "Same Old Lang Syne". All the stories are about former lovers who reconnect after years apart. Jennifer gave us Carte Blanche to do whatever we liked and set it wherever we wanted. How could I refuse? My contribution, SUGAR SHACK, features headstrong journalist Catherine Bennett reuniting with oh-so-sexy maple farmer Luke Mackenzie.

Blurb:

Ten years ago, Catherine Bennett said goodbye to her fiancé, Luke Mackenzie, and his maple farm in Vermont. She wanted to be somebody. She wanted to break out of a small town existence and live the city life. But the higher she flew, the less satisfied she was in love and life. She had left her heart behind. And she'd never forgotten the sizzling sex with blond-haired, muscular Luke.

Now, when her job takes her back home to Vermont, old feelings flame to life. But is Luke still interested? Is he married? And can he ever forgive her for leaving him so long ago? Only one thing's for sure; there's still an attraction. And their reconciliation will burn hotter than the fireworks that light up the New Years Eve sky!

Review from reader, Martin Schwartz (my first male-review): Sugar Shack is the perfect feel-good story to rescue snow-bound readers from the depths of cabin fever. Get it as a holiday gift to yourself. You don't have to read it at Christmas time, but I do recommend reading it during the winter. Summer reading might result in spontaneous combustion.

How did the idea for the plot come about?

It took shape fairly quickly after Jennifer handed down the idea. I loved the thought of former lovers coming back together. I mean, how many of us have replayed the "what if" dream where an old flame comes back after years apart and everything just clicks into place like time has stood still? That's what I wanted for Luke and Cat. Their timing was off the first time, but they get a second chance -- and take every advantage of their time together. I was eager to write a story like this. I tend to "see" the hero first in my head, then I make the woman who can't resist him. *grin* Once I "saw" Luke in my head, their story simply flew from my fingertips.

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

*grin* I honestly don't think that's nosy.. it's always interesting to hear the "call" stories. I love to hear them myself! I just wish mine was more exciting -- LOL! Ok, let's see. I've been writing (seriously) since 2000. I had recently rewritten my contemporary story, REASON TO BELIEVE (RTB) (the one I wrote under my real name, Leslie Ann Dennis) which began as a very sweet romance, but got a big shot of steam since erotica was gaining popularity. I figured the best plan would be to spice up RTB and pitch it to publishers of erotic romance. The first place I tried The Wild Rose Press' Scarlet line. Good news and bad news... the good news is the editor LOVED the story but, based on their definition of erotica, it didn't qualify. An erotic romance is one where the main priority is given to the sexual journey and the romance comes after. But RtB's primary goal was romance that also happened to have lots of sex in it. LOL. So... the Scarlet Line passed on RtB, but recommended it to the Champagne Rose line with a HOT rating (which it got). The editors at Scarlet liked my writing and asked me to pen a story for them and make the sexual journey the central point. I immediately got to work and they contracted THE PIRATE AND THE PUSSYCAT just two days after my birthday in July of 2007. So, The Pirate and The Pussycat was my first sale, based on the rejection of Reason to Believe by that line. (RtB was contracted the following month by Champagne Rose) :)

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!)

Fave books? Oh, that's a tough one! I'm afraid if I start mentioning books written by writer friends, I'll leave someone out and I'll be in the doghouse. So I'll suffice it to say ALL OF MY FRIEND'S BOOKS plus Richard Matheson's WHAT DREAMS MAY COME (the book, NOT the movie) and BID TIME RETURN (Somewhere in Time). I also love Brenda Joyce's "de Warenne Dynasty" series. TV Shows: Medium, Ghost Whisperer, Psych, American Idol, anything on the Food Network, Biography channel, History Channel.... I am very eclectic. LOL!Current fantasy squeeze... mmm.. that's too difficult. I develop crushes on all the hotties who audition for roles as my heroes. *grin*

What are you working on now?

Currently I'm working on another sexy Scarlet. I'm afraid I can't talk too much about it because I'm still in the "planning-scribbling-ideas-and-chucking-wadded-notes-across-the-room" stage. LOL! >How can readers keep up with your writing and books?Oh, I love to hear from readers and other authors! Feel free to contact me at any of the following:email:

PaisleyScott@gmail.com

Website MySpace

Link to all Erotic Romances by Paisley Scott from The Wilder Roses: http://www.thewildrosepress.com/wilderroses/index.php?main_page=index&manufacturers_id=21>

Monday, February 16, 2009

I've Been Lemonaded!!!

On Friday, my good friend Helen Hardt "lemonaded" me. Yes, LOL, apparently that's a good thing. It's the "When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade" Award (The Lemonade Award, for short.) Thank you Helen!!!




It works this way:
1) Link back to the person you received the award from, and
2) Nominate 10 bloggers who are deserving of this award.
Okay! I lemonade the following!
Amanda Ashby
Sara Hantz
Pat Posner
Suzanne Brandyn
April Vine
Monique Wood
Eleni's Taverna
Shelley Munro
Nell Dixon
Rachael Johns

Friday, February 13, 2009

Riding the Rail - Julia Devlin



Please welcome my special guest this week, Scarlet Rose author Julia Devlin, whose recent release, Riding the Rail, is available from The Wild Rose Press!

Over to you, Julia!


Can you tell us a little about your book?


Riding the Rail has a special place in my heart, since it was the first story I ever wrote, finished, and submitted.


Julian St. Clair and Serena Adams meet on a jam packed El train and share an erotic encounter. NO! Not that, get your mind out of the gutter!! Disconcerted by the experience, Serena makes a fast get away only to discover Julian and his partner Ryan are her 9:00 meeting and new clients. Serena tries really hard to keep her head on business, but it doesn’t quite work…


Julian is a great hero, he’s persuasive, smart, gorgeous, and down to earth. He doesn’t let the fact that Serena is ten years older than him stand in his way for even a second. Serena is very sassy, but befuddled over why this beautiful younger man, who can have anyone he wants, desires her. I think she’s very relatable, because most woman in there later 30’s (I’m 37) and 40’s, even while confident, would find themselves feeling confused.


How did the idea for the plot come about?


I got the idea for their story one day while riding a packed El on my way into downtown Chicago … and the rest as they say is history. I plotted out the whole story while smashed between a bunch of strangers. And for the record—not one of them looked like Julian.


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


I was sitting home, during a rare occurrence when I was by myself reading emails when I got the email from Trish over at Wild Rose Press. First I read it about 15 times to makes sure I wasn’t misreading, then I proceeded to call every single person I knew and paced around my house like a mad woman. Lol, yes, I was very dignified and cool about it.


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 favorite all time romance is Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie. If I ever run into Phin Tucker, watch out! My favorite movie is Pride and Prejudice, the original one and my current favorite TV show right now is True Love, but will be quickly replaced by Lost and Flight of the Concords when they return. My fantasy squeeze right now is Jon Hamm from Mad Men… if you’ve never seen him he is H-O-T, hot!

What are you working on now?


I’ve just sold a story to Liquid Silver books that will released in May of 2009 as part of their Hearts Afire series about Firefighters. Abby Simmons is a thirty year-old accountant with a To-Do list and her firefighter neighbor Luke Marlow is kind enough to help her out. ;)

I’m also finishing up a full length Single Title Contemporary about a Bad Boy bestselling author and a Feminist woman’s studies professor. I’m not quite sure where this one is going yet, but I’ll keep you posted.

How can readers keep up with your writing and books?


I’ve got all the usual places… I try and keep them updated, but sometimes I’m more successful than others. A girls got to have time to write you know!


Website
Blog
Myspace

Thanks for having me, this has been great!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Touch of the Demon - Book Teaser!

video

I couldn't work out why it took over half an hour to load in the above (after all, the trailer only lasts for one minute and seven seconds!!) Surely there had to be an easier way?

And then I discovered the magical embedded link on YouTube. The magical embedded link which lets you upload your video in about half a second flat! ARGH!

I live and learn. And pull my hair out!!!

Monday, February 09, 2009

Fabulous Freebies!

Shelley Munro and Helen Hardt both have free reads available for download - that's right, you don't have to pay a cent! Or a penny! I've read them both and they're wonderful. Don't forget tissues when you read Shelley's The Important Things a heart-warming Valentine's story from Samhain and with Helen's Seoul Pleasure from The Wild Rose Press you'll need the air con turned up full blast!

Friday, February 06, 2009

One Night in Memphis - Allie Boniface





Please welcome my special guest this week, Allie Boniface, who writes for both The Wild Rose Press and Samhain Publishing.

Today Allie's chatting about her book One Night in Memphis, availabe now from Samhain Publishing!


Can you tell us a little about your book?

One Night in Memphis (Samhain Publishing) is a "24 hour" contemporary romance which takes place over a single day and night. That's right: 24 hours in 24 chapters. This is actually my second 24 hour novel; my first, One Night in Boston, was also released by Samhain and is currently available in print and ebook.

How did the idea for the plot come about?

This book is loosely based on an actual night in Memphis that my best friend and I spent after college. What a terrific city! I came up with the idea for a 24 hour novel about 4 years ago, when I was trying to think of a way to tell a love story that hadn't already been done 1000 times. So far, readers love the concept, and both books have gotten great reviews. In fact, One Night in Memphis has been named a finalist in this year's EPPIE Awards.

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

I started writing just after September 11th (which is another whole story), and my editor at Samhain picked One Night in Boston out of the slush pile about 5 years later. That book, my first, released in July 2007, and I'll have my 4th coming out later this year. It's been a ball so far!

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!)

Fave books are any which have a terrific storyline I can't put down: The Pact by Jodi Picoult, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Hadden, The Dogs of Babel by Carolyn Parkhurst, The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas, anything by Stephen King. Fave movies are any with a great romance (of course!) - ones that elicit tears are extra good :) When Harry Met Sally, The Lake House, Brokeback Mountain, Gone with the Wind, Life is Beautiful

What are you working on now?

I'm currently working on edits for One Night in Napa, my next One Night Novel. And I'm working on promotions for the print release of One Night in Memphis, which will happen later this spring!

How can readers keep up with your writing and books?

The best way to keep up with my writing and my books is by visiting my blog (I update it daily) or my website. Thanks for having me here!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Zombie Trailer

I'd always wanted to do a book trailer for Foretaste of Forever, but never got around to it. Mainly because I thought it would be Far Too Hard and I'm all for making life as easy as possible (which, obviously, is why I became a writer! ha ha...)

Anyway, my great mate and CP Amanda Ashby has just created an awesome trailer for her upcoming novel, Zombie Queen of Newbury High. She told me it was a lot easier than grappling with our respective websites (we both use Frontpage. Seriously, it's a wonder we have any hair left on our heads!!) Immediately intrigued, I hunted for Movie Maker on the computer (okay, I lie. I asked my genius daughter to find Movie Maker) and then proceded to have a play with my Demon.

OMG. It was soooo much fun and horribly addictive! I still have some tweaking to do, but am keeping everything crossed I'll have it all finished and ready to show next week.

In the meantime, check out Amanda's Zombie Queen Blog Party Vid on Youtube or her blog
(and catch a glimpse of Naked Chested Man!!!)

Amanda's book is coming out the week before Touch of the Demon (it's going to be a busy month!) and yes I will be securing her in the hot seat and fire my breathtakingly insightful questions at her!!!

Monday, February 02, 2009

Blogger Help.... Not Much

A week ago, I was suddenly unable to access a good friend's blog. Well, that was annoying but weird things happen in cyber space so I put it down to a temporary glitch.

The next day, still nothing. I'd reach the page and watch everything load in the nav bars, but then instead of seeing the Adult Content Warning I'd be left with a blank page.

Okay, not so temporary then. And as the week progressed I was denied access to a couple more blogs in exactly the same way.

By this time it's fair to say I was doing my nut!!!

In sheer desperation I went on my husband's computer. Not that I thought it would make any difference. And yet it did. I could access my friends' blogs without any problem at all (and thank god for that) BUT that's not the point!!!

Why can't I get on them from my computer?

Has anyone tried contacting Blogger Help? HA HA! There's a joke! I think I managed to send them something, but am not betting on it. So instead I had a look through their Forums and discovered others have experienced this problem - all stemming from the beginning of last week.

It seems some viewers have trouble accessing blogs with an adult content warning. It appears IE7 or Firefox Mozilla might eliminate that problem, otherwise the only alternative suggested was to remove the warning from the blog. My question is WHY??? Why has this suddenly become an issue and why the hell can't anyone contact Blogger (or Google or whoever runs the thing) to let them know?