Saturday, October 30, 2010

Do You Want to Know a Secret?

A Halloween Read...Enjoy!

“A Halloween party isn’t a party until someone has to clean up.”
On a labored sigh, Pennelope Anderson twisted her tawny hair into a clear plastic clip. She nudged a garbage bag chock full of crinkled cups and paper plates. An avalanche of refuse tumbled out onto her feet. “My friends are pigs but I can forgive them because we have a good time.”

A warm hand covered hers. Her gaze shifted to her best friend, Nicky Lyons. Eyes the color of unripened lemons pinned her to the spot. He licked his bottom lip and knelt next to her. “My time with you is always good.”

Nervous giggles slipped past her lips and a shiver slid up her spine. “You’re just saying that to make my day.” God, she had to get a grip. Measuring her words, she paused. “And I love it.”

A hank of raven hair slid over his forehead. “I see.” The corner of his mouth kinked. “How about spending more time with me, besides dressed in costumes?”

Forcing her breathing to slow, Penn shrugged and twisted the bag closed. “You’re not a commitment kind of guy and I’m a relationship kind of girl. Look at how many women you’ve dated in the past year. I can’t compete.” Although a short, spicy evening of passion enticed her, she refused to ruin a strong friendship for a one-nighter.

Tipping his head, he crinkled a dark brow. “Are you sure about that? This Lyon could change his stripes.” He shook open a new bag and lined the garbage bin.

Covering her mouth with her hand to smother a chuckle, she raked her gaze over him. Sinewy muscles rippled under his tight black T-shirt and she yearned to smooth her fingers over the dusting of beard on his cheeks. Okay, how to change the subject to something a little less—distracting? “I’m not sure about stripes, but you did change out of your vampire get-up in a quick fashion. Don’t tell me you left it stroodled all over my bathroom. I think there’s still white and black makeup smeared around my sink.”

Nicky rocked back on his heels. “And you spared no time losing the skimpy black dress in favor of your favorite jeans. Not that I didn’t like the dress, mind you.”

Dusting her hands on her jeans legs, Penn stood. She rolled her tongue around her dry mouth and tossed the garbage bag into the can next to the back door. “Okay, well, in other news, I think it’s time to let Fang out of the bedroom. He’ll probably need to run outside.”

Nicky followed hot on her heels. “He hates that name, you know.”

Frustration marred her forehead. She clutched the wooden stair rail and turned. “Does he? How do you know? Or is that a male thing—you telepath your inner desires to each other?” She snorted. “Cause it would be funny if you did.”

Swatting her ass, he urged her forward. Displeasure clouded his voice. “Would you really want to be referred to as a tooth?”

As she reached the top of the stairs, she edged her shoulder up in a thoughtful shrug. “When I found him, he hissed at me. Fang seemed appropriate. He thinks he’s tough, but he’s really a lover, despite what he likes or dislikes.” She stopped short in the hallway. “The door is cracked.”

With a grunt, Nicky ran into her. “I thought you left it shut. Did you forget?”

With trembling hands, she shoved the door open. Deafening silence met her ears. “I know this was closed. I closed it.” Her heart thundered in her chest. Fear pounded into her brain. “We have to find him.”

Trailing his fingers through her pony tail, Nicky tucked her tag into her sweatshirt collar. “He can take care of himself.”

“What?” She shrieked, jumping from his grasp. “It’s Halloween! Some people hurt black cats on Halloween. I can’t let that happen to Fang, even if he hates his name. I’d be lost without him. I love him.”

On a sigh, Nicky cocked his head. His brows rose beneath his dark bangs. “He’s safe.”

She burst past him, bounding down the stairs. “I’ll get his treats. Please grab the carrier. If he’s not in the basement, he’s probably just out in the yard.” Her hands fluttered through the air. “He’s a smart cat and can’t have gone far.”

With a firm hand to her shoulder, he stopped her frantic movements. Concern and something else shone in his green eyes. “Do you trust me?”

Penn let out a long breath. “Yes, more than I care to think about some times.” Why did she just admit that? He wasn’t that in to her. She bit her tongue. “Why are we just standing here? We need to find Fang.”

He brushed a rogue lock of hair off her forehead. “I know where he is.”

Clutching her chest, she rested against the living room wall. “Thank God. You always think ahead. Did you lock him in the basement? Or is he at your apartment?”

Nicky cocked his head. He tapped his chest, right above his heart. “He’s in here.”

She angled a brow. The low tone of his voice sent shivers through her body. “You ate my cat? That’s just weird.” Forcing her attention from his emerald gaze, she sighed when he didn’t laugh at her joke. “I know you didn’t eat him, so where is he—really?”

A calloused finger tipped her chin. No matter how much she wanted to remain indifferent, Nicky was the one man she couldn’t ignore. A growl rumbled in his throat. “I’ll ask again. Do you trust me?”

Without thinking, she spoke the words in her heart. “I trust you.”

“Then come upstairs with me.” As he tugged her down the hallway, she fought to register his words. Did he want to sleep with her? A lump lodged in her throat. She wanted him—once they found Fang.

In front of her bedroom door, he paused and leaned on the stark white frame. “I need to show you something.”

She held up her index finger to buy a moment of time, to slow him down in case his plans included taking the relationship a step further. “You can show me later. First things first, let’s find Fang.”

Angling his head toward her bedroom, he nodded and kissed the tip of her finger. “He’s in here. Safe and sound.” With a gentle tug, he helped her into the room and gestured to the bed. “Sit.”

Though feeling uneasy, she did as he asked. Chills ricocheted through her system. Something was odd. God, why did it have to be Halloween? Bad things happened on Halloween, like last year when her Labrador, Lugosi, was hit by a car, yet his body was never found.

Wrapping his fingers around her hand, Nicky knelt before her. “Do you know you’re sexy?”

Before she could stop them, words rushed past her lips. “In a baggy KSU sweatshirt, worn jeans, no makeup, and messy hair—that’s sexy all right.” He exemplified sex. She looked like the frumpy girl next door. Still, what did her looks have to do with finding the damned cat?

He chuckled. “A man can only take so much.” Her breath stuck in her throat as his hands braced on her thighs. He moved closer, situating himself between her legs. “You make one gorgeous witch, baby girl. I couldn’t take my eyes off you all night.”

Rolling her eyes, she snorted. “Because you worry about me.”

His breath warmed her skin and sent tingles to her core. “Because I love you.”

Could he want her for real? She didn’t see that declaration coming. Beneath her sweatshirt, her nipples pebbled. “Me?”

“You.” He pressed warm, wet kisses over her cheeks. “I lost my heart the day we met five years ago. With you, I’m free to be myself.”

His lips met hers. On a sigh, she opened for him. His taste, a mix of cola and spicy man rolled over her tongue. Sizzles shot from her core to her heart in warp speed. Could he be the one?

Nicky broke the kiss and cupped her jaw. “Did you ever wonder why you never see me in the same room with Fang?”

Working to catch her breath, she turned his words over in her mind. “Well, he’s shy. He only honeys up to me.” Like I want you to.

His thumb smoothed circles on her cheek. “He loves you, but he’s not who he seems. Do you want to know a secret?”

Nicky closed his eyes. His body fizzled and morphed at her feet. Before she could process his disappearing act, Fang appeared in his place surrounded by the rumpled clothing. The cat cocked his head and stared at her with vibrant green eyes.

With white knuckles, she grasped the comforter. Nicky was flesh and bone. She tasted him, fantasized about him. How the hell did he shift into—a cat? No, how did he shift into her cat? “I know what I’m seeing, but this isn’t happening. Nicky, wherever you are, stop trying to scare me.”

Fang’s eyes closed. He lowered his head. In a moment, Nicky sat before her—stark naked. She gasped and her eyes widened. Every inch of his ripped body imprinted itself on her brain. Another gasp slipped past her lips as she noticed his cock, long, thick, and steely against his thigh. She shook her head. “But you can’t be him. I brought him home. He hissed at me and wouldn’t come out from under the bed for a month. He escaped from the vet’s office...”

He caressed her cheek. “Baby girl, I have the ability to shift. I’m not evil and I won’t hurt you. Until I met you, I hid my abilities, but one look at your sweet body and I knew I wanted to be with you.”

“Is this a sick Halloween joke? ‘Cause looking at you makes me want you, but I’m not laughing at that trick.” Hot tears dampened her lashes. “Why didn’t you tell me before now? I wouldn’t have scheduled the appointment to have you fixed.”

Nicky kissed away her sadness. “I feared you’d run from me. I care too much to let you go. Despite the fact that you tried to have my nads removed, I’m in love with you.” His hands roved over her body underneath the baggy shirt. She groaned as he nipped her neck. His voice rumbled over her senses, turning them inside out. “And right now, I want to make love to you.”

Edging away from him, she ripped the sweatshirt over her head and tugged the clip from her hair. “Do you want to know my secret?”

His brow crooked again. “You can shift, too?”

“I’m in love with you, too.”

With a small chuckle, Nicky grinned. “I hoped you’d say that.”

Smoothing her hands over his pecs, she sighed. “So now you know my truth, do I get a trick or a treat?”

Deft fingers unbuttoned her jeans. Nicky growled. “It’s only eleven a.m. and I plan to treat you all day long until we collapse. Happy Halloween, baby girl.”

She fell against the mattress, tugging him along for the ride. “Happy Halloween, indeed.”

Friday, October 29, 2010

Visiting at Victoria Blisse's Blog!

I'm doing so much and promoting so much today!

First: I'm over at Victoria Blisse's blog as her Friday Friend! Come check out the post. You'll be glad you did.

Second: Want to see come cool costumes, sexy pics, and a great little story? Head over to Megan's blog and Kealie's Tumblr blog.

Third: Still not enough excitement for you? Well, keep reading. All weekend I'm participating in the Blog-a-Thon with the Paranormal Romantics! You could win a Nook!

Fourth: Ya know you're not done yet! Want to win even MORE prizes? Then join The Long and Short of It's Halloween Scavenger Hunt! Lots of cool things up for grabs. Ebooks, t-shirts, print need to check it out.

Fifth: And since that isn't all (sound like a late-night informercial, don't I?)There's gonna be a shindig over at the Menagerie. My dear pals Megan and Kealie are also doing a story (along with Mysti and Jenny Kat) and posting some nummy pics. You need to go over there.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thank You Thursday

I'll keep this short and sweet because, well, I've had a rough day for the past couple days. It's nothing big, just general overwhelming feelings and overall frustration. I've had some good things happen and I'll tell you about those soon enough, but, what's gotten me through and kept me from ripping out my hairs (including the gray ones) has been the cats. I'm one of those people who like having a lap pet. Get your minds out of the gutter. Not like that. There's something snuggle-y about having a big ole kitty climb into your lap so you can pet them and get rid of frustration. Works better than liquor or food, for me anyway.

So I'm thankful for the boys. The two at home and the two watching from the catnip euphoria in the sky.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

What the? Wednesday

This made me look twice. I happened to be in the middle of Walmart (What can I say, they have the groceries to feed my family at a decent price... we all gotta cut costs somewhere) and these two women were chatting happily. This wouldn't normally bother me, but they were chattering in line to check out.

Here's where it turned into the bizarre.

A woman who was in another line stepped over to the line I happened to be in (the chatting women were in front of me), and began berating them. I was flabbergasted. I have no idea if she knew them, but because they spoke about a hot-button topic to the woman, she had to butt in and give her 25 cents. (I'd have said two cents, but she spoke for at least 5 minutes non-stop.)

Now I know people are very passionate when it comes to politics, which is why I'm not talking politics. Unfortunately, those women were. Whatever it was that aggravated the nosy woman, she had to talk. I applaud her for having an opinion. We all need opinions. What I was embarrassed by, was her lack of conscience. If she wanted to CONVERSE with the women, she had a funny way of showing it. Each time they said something, SHE SPOKE LOUDER.

The poor cashier looked like she wanted to melt in the floor.

So my point to my rant? Simple. Have an opinion. The free exchange of ideas is a fantastic concept. But keep in mind, it's an exchange. Not a shouting match where whoever shouts loudest is right. I once heard someone say, the one who shouts louder is generally the one who is in the wrong. I don't know if it's true. I'd say the one who screams loudest generally packs a lot of passion. But loud doesn't automatically make you right.

Oh well. I'll shut up now.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Monday Moans

Yeah, yeah, I'm late. It happens. It's a good thing tho. I wanted to let my characters come out to small detail. I am up to my eyeballs in edits. You won't hear me complain. Nope. I like edits. Why? Cuz I know that I'm that much closer to having the book released. I can look back on what I edited/changed/fixed and know it's a job well done.

I'll post a hottie tomorrow and let the characters play on Wednesday or Thursday and on Friday, I'll be visiting with my dear friend Victoria Blisse on her blog. Come check it out!

And for this weekend, I have a special treat. Not only am I participating in a the Blog-a-Thon with the Pararomantics Blog, where you can win a Nook, but I'm also taking part in the Long and Short of It's Halloween Hunt. You can win great prize packs including my novel My Immortal. Check it out. And if that's not enough fat free fun on Halloween, I'll have each hour on the hour posts on my blog. Might even throw in special short story... But I guarantee the pics will be worth it. :D

Friday, October 22, 2010

Friday Flirts

Thought I'd pre-empt FF with a couple of in the mood pics. Why not? I'm in a jazzed writing mood and hey, any excuse is a good excuse to look at hot guys. It is.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Thank You Thursday

The things children say. Cracks me up.

Watching the MLB playoffs.

"I love football."

"Youngling, this is baseball."

"Oh, then I love baseball."

"Score a goal! Score a goal!"

"Youngling, they called the player out. And in baseball you get runs."

" daddy when he eats hot peppers?"

"Sorta like that."

The things children say...I am so thankful for them.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

What the? Wednesdays - Allergies!


Yes, I am a sufferer and it stinks. I don't have a full blown cold or the allery equivalent, but the itchy eyes, sneezing, and blah feeling can suck lemons. I woke up this am and I just couldn't open my eyes. I'm telling you, I wanted to crawl back under my nice warm comforter and snuggle. But at the same time, my brain kicked on and I couldn't stop thinking about a couple of stories I'm in the middle of. Funny how that works. When I want to crash, the characters want to chatter. Oy...

I'm going to go work on those stories since I have the time and determination to get them done.


Monday, October 18, 2010

Monday Moans

Monday Moans is the name, giving you a preview of me is the game. *Wink* Okay, so that's a little cheesy. Never let it be said that I'm not willing to make fun of myself.

Who am I?

Ah, yes, it would be nice if I gave you an introduction. My folly. (And yes, I do talk like that. Sammy would say I'm a true dork. She's right.) But my name. I'm Ryan Black, Ghost Explorer.

Wait...You've never heard of me? Really? Then I am just no doing my job. One more time.

I'm Ryan Black and I seek out the things that go bump in the night. I prove the things in the darkness are real. Oh yes, and I hunt for ghost. I am a Ghost Explorer.


I didn't think so. (Shrugs)I and the host of the show Ghost Explorers. But there's more to me than the schmaltzy guy who (cringing) tripped over my own two feet and got the willies scared out of me at the Allavisa School by an overly horny family of raccoons. You see, ghosts are real. Don't believe me? You're not alone. Many don't. Sad really. And the show should be global but I have to find the right cohort. My camera guy, Eddie, well, he's a nice guy, but A) he's married, and B) I don't swing that way. (and he's got really hairy legs. Not sexy.)

That being said, there is a particular person I want to cohost with. I'd like to be a whole lot more with her. Samara Jacobs. The woman makes my blood boil for all the right reasons. One look at her and I'm good for the day. (Actually I want to do more than look, but I can only ask for so much.)

Ahhh...yeah....well, I need to go...take care of something. Yeah... have fun, enjoy Wendi's blog and I hope to talk to you soon.

(Rushing from computer...rushing back)

And watch Ghost Explorers! Bye!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Friday Flirts

I know, I'm a little later than normal in posting this post. I have a great excuse. I tend to write my posts the night before. Why? Cuz that's when I have the moment to do it. This time? I had a mini date night with DH. We watched IronMan 2, which was great and yes, I have a soft spot for Robert Downey Jr. The story was good. Not as great as 1 but, hey, you can't make everything fantastic.

So Friday Flirts... Megan's been asking me for help and I've been helping her.

But I've also got another fantastic CP whose been invaluable in helping me with Jade and Marlon's story. Did I mention this one? Ah, I might not. Jade and Marlon's story is the follow up to Right. I wrote it over a year ago, but I just hadn't had any drive to get it fiddled with. Why? Because I had other things to do, and it needed about 10k worth of additions to make it print length. Right is in print and IMHO, the following ones should be, too. She's helping me see the things that needed added, the parts that are strong and the parts that are, well, they need help. Which is what a CP is for. Fingers crossed, I plan to have it subbed by December 31st.

I'm planning on doing NaNo this year, too. Yeah, I'm a glutton for punishment. I've got about three other stories going or in my head. Oh, and I plan on working on Farmer here real soon, too. I've got lots on my plate and sorting it out that's gonna kick my butt.

Oh well. If I wasn't busy, I'd be hunting things to do.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thank You Thursdays

I'm thankful for chocolate. Sad? Funny? Little of both? Probably. You see, I'll forgo other food if there's chocolate. But it can't be just any old chocolate.

It's gotta be real good milk chocolate.

Sorry, not into the dark chocolate healthy stuff. Sheesh. Gramma always said, a moment on the lips means a lifetime on the hips. Fine. Then if it's sticking around, it had better have been something I *really* liked.

When I get stressed or hungry or just want chocolate, well, you know what I'm prolly doing. And since I've been stressed lately, I've indulged.(And yes, I've used moderation...)

Not me, but it sure could've been.

***Oh, and did you want to know what the label on the chocolate said? This:
For the Immediate Relief of: Chocolate Cravings, Lovesickness, Exam Pressure, Mild Anxiety and Extreme Pressure.
Directions for Use: Tear open wrapper, break off desired dosage and consume. Alternatively massage into the affected area. Repeat dosage as required until finished. If symptoms persist, consult your local confectionist.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What the? Wednesdays..A Couple New Reviews!

There for a while, it seemed like no matter what happened, I couldn't buy a review for my very first short story (first thing ever out for me) Learning How to Bend. I went through the normal range of emotions, too. First I was thrilled it was out, then introspective because I hadn't had any reviews. Then a little down in the dumps because of no feedback. Then I got one review. It was nice. Good, but I wanted more feedback. I don't know about you, but really, it seems like the more responses I get, the better my writing becomes. So, I waited. Seemed like forever, too. And then the review fairy dropped not one, but two reviews on my door step. Can you tell I was elated. (Oh, I don't know, the non-stop paragraph above wasn't a clue? Hee hee.)

Want to read them? Sure you do!

First one is Seriously Reviewed. I give them tons of credit because they are blunt and no-hold-barred. If they like it, they like it. If not, they tell you. In my case, I think she liked it.
Ms. Zwaduk has a smooth writing style. The words flow together and create vivid imagery and interesting characters. Learning How To Bend had all the components for a spicy erotic tale. Lust, betrayal, remorse, forgiveness. I enjoyed the story and I thought the technical points—the dialog, descriptions and such, were flawless. But there were moments I didn’t like the characters. Some aspects just didn’t seem to fit with the overall puzzle. We know both characters are hurting. They both feel betrayed and they both wish the circumstances of their relationship were better. All this was great. I felt their pain and confusion and also the longing for both what they’d lost and what they could still have if either would “learn how to bend”. Great title by the way, Ms. Zwaduk.

Made me smile. But I gotta tell ya, what made me smile wider, was the one from Whipped Cream Reviews. When I wrote Seth, he was tough to write. Why? He's emotionally drained. The guy has seen hell and lived to talk about it. But he's conflicted, too. He's not sure what to think about what he's seen. It's screwed him up. But you want to read the review, not my rambling.

When faced with soon-to-be-ex-husband Seth at her door Abby decides to up the ante and sleep with not only Seth but his best friend Nate.

The main characters were both amazing, and I loved the fact that both of them were able to get past their own perceptions and see the truth in regard to one another. Seth had allowed his own insecurities to wreak havoc in his mind and his marriage. They even led him to question their relationship. The good thing was that even if his mind was confused, his heart knew exactly where it belonged. In Abby’s case she had built a barrier in her heart because her marriage had run its course -- according to her husband. At least that is what she thought until he showed up at the door with every intention on proving to his wife that he had a moment of weakness but was willing to do what it took to prove to her he wanted their marriage for the long haul - even if that meant a ménage with Nate. Both could have easily turned their backs on each other. It shows real character that they didn’t.

The antagonistic conflict worked because it helped feed on Seth and Abby’s already existing insecurities. Kenny was able to find out what could destroy them and preyed on it perfectly. Luckily for our hero and heroine, their love was everlasting even when faced with the seemingly impossible situations.

We know that the media always tries to put a face with the soldiers; so does this story. This is something that is commendable. Anyone who reads this story can feel the passion from the author. Seth suffered the unimaginable while fighting in Iraq just like many of our real life soldiers. Part of what he saw leads to his questioning his marriage. This is a fictional character and I am not sure if the author based this story on a real person, but if so I would not be surprised. That is how real she has made Seth.

This story definitely had its share of hot sweaty sex, but what really made me fall in love with it was the relationship development and the emotions behind both of the characters. So if your heart strings need a little plucking this will be an excellent choice.

Yeah, smile was super wide.

Now that I have your interest, want the vital stats for Learning How to Bend? Here's the blurb:
Their marriage is about to fall apart, but not if she can help it and he's willing to bend.

Abby Donovan imagined nothing could change her simple life as a librarian. Her loving husband Seth, a mechanic in the Air National Guard, is scheduled to return from a short deployment in Iraq. Before he gets home, a letter arrives. It seems Seth is asking for a divorce. She must decide whether to walk away without a fight or to wait and confront him with the thing he's always dreamed of - a ménage à trois. But all is not as it seems.

Seth Donovan wanted an idyllic life to go along with his career in the military. Then he sees the atrocities of war firsthand. A conversation with a colleague ends up as fodder for the rumour mill and so much more. Seth never wanted a divorce. He wants his wife. Will she accept him despite the rumours and advances from another man? Or can their relationship withstand the turmoil of war?

Oh, you wanted an excerpt? Sure!
“When can a fantasy be more than just a figment of the imagination?”

Abby Donovan pushed the sweat-soaked strands of hair off her forehead. “When the object of one’s affection is real.”

She plopped down on the couch. Pushing the furniture to the perimeter of the room drained her. Now she spoke to the walls, knowing her wayward husband couldn’t hear her ranting. “Is this what you wanted, Seth? Six years down the drain because your dick couldn’t stay in your pants?”

She glanced at her cell phone then at the photo propped against a nearby box. She, Seth and his best friend Nate grinned back at her. Maybe pizza would take her mind off her pain. Probably not, but with Nate as the delivery man, anything was possible. She bit her fingernail and dialled Besta Pizza Around’s number. A medium pie with extra mushrooms delivered by the sandy-haired hunk would make her feel a little better.

She checked the time on the clock on the microwave. Seven-oh-seven. Her husband’s best friend, Nate Waterston, was on delivery duty. Besta Pizza Around’s policy was ‘delivery in half an hour or you get another pizza free’. Calculating her wait time, she turned on her heel and headed to the bedroom. She had to hurry if she wanted to be dressed when she met her favourite pizza guy.

Abby stripped off her clothes in the stark bedroom and turned the stereo up to full volume, blasting the rock band, Slipknot, to drown out her turbulent thoughts.

She tugged off her socks. Seth smiled from a snapshot on the dresser. She balled the clothing and hurled them at the picture. “You son of a bitch! Why? Wasn’t I exciting enough? I loved you.” I still do…

Tears streamed down her cheeks. Her chest heaved. “Was it because I’m not a pilot?” She wadded her T-shirt and tossed it across the room. “You said our lovemaking was passionate and explosive!”

She stepped into the steaming hot shower. The water stung her tired muscles, but felt wonderful nonetheless, like indulgent pinpricks on her tender flesh. While she lathered her body, her mind wandered back to Seth. As much as she wanted to, she couldn’t get her soon-to-be ex-husband out of her mind.

Want your own copy? Go to Total-e-Bound or Amazon for a Kindle version.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Monday Moans

Seems like a long time since I've been able to do this. I'm not complaining. Heck no. I love hosting blog tours. It's a blast to read the new to me authors. But I have a couple of characters dying (no pun intended) to come out and play. Why not? So take it away, girls.

About time. Yanno, Wendi can talk your ear off (but this is a blog, so would it be, blind your eyes off? I'm not sure. Oh well. ) Hi, I'm Clover and I'm not in a band. Sounds goofy, eh? It is. I love to sing. Love it. But, I'm not real keen on being on stage. I guess if I could be there with others, I'd be okay. Well, not okay, because I have this strange feeling that if I *did* get on stage, the one person I'm scared to death to sing with would show up and cling like plastic wrap. He's the lead singer for Outlaw. Heck, I think he *is* Outlaw, but that's not important. Torin is the one person I try to avoid. You might want to know why. Simple, he's charismatic, hot as hell, has a voice that could melt butter, and (I'm being blunt) he's a serial commitment-phobe. Would I lie? Sure, if you've seen him on stage, its *very* hard to look away. But peel back the layer of fame, and I'm not so sure he's still appealing. (Okay, he probably is, but I'm determined not to fall for him. I'm not. I know you don't believe me.) But I've talked enough about myself. Marley?

Thanks, Clover. You make it sound so hard to love a man on stage. Who am I kidding? It is. My name is Marley and there is a certain man whose held my heart for a long time. Sully Tanner. Its hard to talk about him because I don't see him much. He's off in NYC and doesn't come home much. Not that I really want him to come home. It's easier when he's not around. Then I don't realize I miss him as much as I shouldn't. I didn't want to fall for him, but it's really hard when the man has lived next door as long as you remember, and then after one night of...well...I won't go there, but after one night I'll never forget, he just left to find his fame and rock-n-roll fortune in New York. I could've followed him, I suppose. But that's not me. What do I do right now? I'm a proud Ohio farm girl. The smell of cow poo doesn't bother me and I've been known to work my fair share of hay wagons during the summer. But as I've come to bluntly learn, ragtag, working girl doesn't mix with the glamorous life of a rock-n-roller.Now that I've made myself a bit maudlin, I'll go. Clover and I have some stores to hit and stores to star in.

Bye, girls. I'll get to you soon enough. Thanks for reading.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Friday Flirts

I'm gonna cheat. Last night I got to see Gary Allan...again...not that way... I'm married. But I did get to see him in concert. Yum. Always a favorite. So instead of Friday Flirts where I talk about my WIP's since they are all pretty much at a standstill...(**SIGH**), i thought I'd share mt fave pics of Mr. Allan. I'd post mine, but I haven't had time to stop whirling like a dervish. (Sorry...not really)


(I love the jacket look)


(Gotta Love a Man in a Cowboy Hat)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thank You Thursday--New Book Video!!!

Thank you to Goddess Fish Promotions because they created my new book video for You'll Think of Me. I think it turned out fantastic. What do you think?

I'm thrilled. And I hope it entices you to want to read You'll Think of Me, too. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

What the? Wednesday

My what the? Wednesday is about time management. I could complain. I'm actually not. I'm looking for some advice.

I have an EDJ, even if it's really not evil. Hey, it pays the bills when writing doesn't (but then again, I didn't put pen to paper and fingers to keyboard because I wanted to get rich. I did it because I can't see myself not writing. Scouts honor--and yeah, I was a girl scout. Don't look so shocked. It didn't last forever, but I was a scout.). But lately I'm finding that either I've taken on too many projects (totally possible), things have gotten beyond my control (only when it's truly things I can't control--yanno, weather, the darn voices of my characters), and I want to get some of my projects to move forward but I feel like I'm spinning my wheels.

So I'm looking for some suggestions to manage my time. I have a schedule, but I can't always stick to it because with a youngling and animals, sometimes schedules are worthless. I've tried a timer, but I'm one of those masochistic people that will work on something until it's done because I can't leave it half done. I'll stay up all night working on a story if the flow is there.

What do you do to manage your time? Any tips? Suggestions? I'm all open ears.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Game, Set, Match -- The Tour -- Here! Today!

Today the wonderful and talented Nana Malone stops by with her new book, Game, Set, Match, available now from the Wild Rose Press. She's here talking about her book and answering the random questions I came up with. Check her out! Want to follow her tour? Click here!

Hello Nana! Just a few random questions for those who want to know more about you! How long have you been writing?
Well I've been writing God awful poetry since I was a little girl. But I started writing fiction with publication in mind eleven years ago. It took me ten of those eleven to sell my first book.

Hey, everyone has to start somewhere. Took me at least 5 years. But it's nice to be in good company at the same publisher. So, when you write, what comes first: the plot or the characters?
A little bit of both. With this book, I saw Izzy so clearly. The story centers around Izzy’s need to create her family. A nurturer at heart, she’s spent most of her adult life hiding from what she really wants in life and never fighting for herself. Jason is where I started to lay out the plot. He’s spent his entire career being an image but no one has ever seen the real him. I spent a lot of time hammering out their obstacles and the journey I wanted them to take.

Sounds very cool. And yes, I can't wait to get my hands on my copy! How do you come up with the titles to your books?
Usually in the shower, they just pop into my head.

Hee hee, the best things seem to just pop into my head, so I totally understand. What inspired you to write your first book?
I was living in NYC at the time, hating just about every aspect of my PR job, except the writing. And a little book called Bridget Jones’s Diary came out. It was after reading Bridget Jones’s Diary, that I dared to dream I could make a career in publishing. I felt like Helen Fielding understood my voice. I realized that I could bring out my stories too and hopefully make people laugh.

I think the book that really inspired me the most was Dark Needs at Night's Edge by Kresley Cole. I thought, man, that's an awesome world and if I can manage half that coolness, I've done something. Speaking of books, how many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
Well I’ve written three, but Game, Set, Match is the first one published, so it has an unfair advantage. Lol. I wrote a hip paranormal a while ago and I’m thinking of retooling that into a YA. So it’s a close 2nd.

Hip paranormal for teens? You have my attention. Let me know the status on that one. I'm interested. Now on to the goofy questions, because I can. Have you ever cried during a movie? What movie or why not?
Oh yes. Many. What can I say? I can be mushy. Probably the one that stands out most in my head was Sarafina with Whoopi Goldberg. I saw it around the time Nelson Mandela was released from Prison. I touched me at the time like nothing else had.

Wow, that's heavy stuff. I cried at Toy Story Three. Won't give it away, but if you're a mommy, you'll totally understand and yes, it's fine to be mushy. It's what makes us romantics. Another randomly goofy question: favorite article of clothing?
Lol. I have this old ratty pair of jeans. Yes, they have holes in them that I’ve patched over. My husband insists that he’s going to throw them out, but I keep begging him not to. They’re just so comfortable. Had them 15 years.

I have some jeans just like that and a hoodie that's missing half the embroidery, but, man, are they comfy! And speaking of comfy, what does it take to get you in the mood to write? Do you have a schedule or just when inspiration strikes?
I used to have an awesome schedule. I used to color code it too. Yes, I’m “that” person. Lol. Then I had a baby and the idea of a schedule jumped out the window. So now I write when I can find the time. I usually keep a little notebook handy for when I’m inspired and try to write during lunch at work.

I only wish I could go back to being "that girl". I need structure, but it all seems fall apart when life happens. Oh well. Someone asked me this question and I love it, so I'm going to ask you, too. If you could write the story to make you a millionaire...the NYT Bestseller...what would yours be?
Well, ideally I’ve already written it. Game, Set, Match. Ha! Honestly. For someone like me it’s dangerous to think about the NYT bestseller. Because I’m competitive by nature and will write to conform to what I think the bestseller has to be. Instead I tell myself to write the best stories I can and make sure they sound like me and not someone else. The NYT list will come the more I write….Or at least I hope it will. Lol.

Competition is a good thing. It makes you strong. And its great incentive. Now for the last little thing and then we get into the best part--the book! Write a PG paragraph (mini story):
Ciara jogged down the front stairs of her pretty porch in a hustle to retrieve her new puppy. The silly rolly polly dog has escaped his crate for the second time that day. The little guy must have been Houdini in a previous life. Racing around the side of the house, she called out, “Rasti, Rasti. Here boy.” A tiny yip that sounded more like it belonged to a Yorkie than a baby Mastiff, alerted her to his location. Crossing over into the neighbor’s yard, she found Rasti planting a big wet kiss with his slippery, pink tongue on the neighbors little sister.

Very nice. I like it. Has it sparked your imagination to create a whole story around it? It's a surefire for me.

Thank you for stopping by and feel free to stick around. Nana will be here answering questions all day, so readers, here's your part: comment!!!

Off the court, tennis star Jason Cartwright’s playboy image is taking a public beating. On the court, he’s down forty-love. A knee injury is shutting down his game, and the paparazzi are splashing his love life on every magazine. A comeback is in order, but the makeover he needs to save his faltering career is in the hands of the woman he loved and left fifteen years ago.

While single-mom, Izzy Connors, sees people for who they really are through the lens of her camera, even without it, she knows Jason isn’t the star he appears to be. Although his charm and good looks haven’t dimmed since he broke her heart, all she sees is his wasted talent and playboy lifestyle.

Can Izzy put the past behind her and help Jason get his game, and his image, back on track? Or will the click of her camera shatter his world as well as his heart?

Want an excerpt? Coming right up!
Dark glasses masked his eyes, but Izzy knew behind them, she’d find intense heat able to strip her to the soul. His tousled blond hair just as she remembered it, a little unkempt, as if he hadn’t bothered with it. He was every bit the Hollywood playboy portrayed in the press. And that devil-may-care sexiness was going to be the death of her.

Before she could say anything else, his strong arms and a warm musky scent enveloped her. Involuntarily, her body stilled like an ice sculpture as her breasts came into contact with the hard planes of his chest. Unable to process the situation, she heard a faint clatter as his sunglasses fell to the floor. She squeezed her eyes shut and tried not to think of the last time she’d seen him, the last time he’d abandoned her for Sabrina.

“Damn, Izzy, you look amazing.” He set her down, but kept hold of one of her hands. Whiskey eyes poured warm amber over every inch of her body. “How’ve you been?”

The source of her greatest humiliation wanted to know how she’d been, as if they were old buddies. She reminded herself they, for all intents and purposes, were old buddies, until she’d made the mistake of pegging him as her first lover.

Behind Jason, his companion, with his rugged dark good looks and infectious smile, saved her from having to speak. Not that she could have. “Did I miss something, Jase? You two know each other?”

Jason’s smile flashed, making her want to do all manner of inappropriate things. Smash his head in with a frying pan? Strip him bare and see if he still looked as good as he promised? Launch a full TET offensive on him with her lips?

Not necessarily in that order.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Nana Malone Stops By Tomorrow!

Nana Malone stops by tomorrow with her new book, Game, Set, Match. Want to read the interview? Stop back tomorrow! And comment! There are prizes to be had and you don't want to miss out. Want to follow her tour? Click here!

Blurb? No problem!
Off the court, tennis star Jason Cartwright’s playboy image is taking a public beating. On the court, he’s down forty-love. A knee injury is shutting down his game, and the paparazzi are splashing his love life on every magazine. A comeback is in order, but the makeover he needs to save his faltering career is in the hands of the woman he loved and left fifteen years ago.

While single-mom, Izzy Connors, sees people for who they really are through the lens of her camera, even without it, she knows Jason isn’t the star he appears to be. Although his charm and good looks haven’t dimmed since he broke her heart, all she sees is his wasted talent and playboy lifestyle.

Can Izzy put the past behind her and help Jason get his game, and his image, back on track? Or will the click of her camera shatter his world as well as his heart?

Exceprt? Sure!
Dark glasses masked his eyes, but Izzy knew behind them she’d find intense heat able to strip her to the soul.

His tousled blond hair was just as she remembered it, a little unkempt, as if he hadn’t bothered with it. He was every bit the Hollywood playboy portrayed in the press. And that devil-may-care sexiness was going to be the death of her.

Before she could say anything else, his strong arms and a warm musky scent enveloped her. Involuntarily, her body stilled like an ice sculpture as her breasts came into contact with the hard planes of his chest. Unable to process the situation, she heard a faint clatter as his sunglasses fell to the floor. She squeezed her eyes shut and tried not to think of the last time she’d seen him, the last time he’d abandoned her for Sabrina.

“Damn, Izzy, you look amazing.” He set her down, but kept hold of one of her hands. Whiskey eyes poured warm amber over every inch of her body. “How’ve you been?”

The source of her greatest humiliation wanted to know how she’d been, as if they were old buddies. She reminded herself they, for all intents and purposes, were old buddies, until she’d made the mistake of pegging him as her first lover.

Behind Jason, his companion, with his rugged dark good looks and infectious smile, saved her from having to speak. Not that she could have. “Did I miss something, Jase? You two know each other?”

Jason’s smile flashed, making her want to do all manner of inappropriate things. Smash his head in with a frying pan? Strip him bare and see if he still looked as good as he promised? Launch a full TET offensive on him with her lips?

Not necessarily in that order.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Free Read!!!!

That's right. I have another free read. Hey, it's a great way to get a taste of my work--you might find you like it and want to read more. What's the short story called?

DH wanted me to write a story about a camper. Well, it's not totally about the camper, but it's hot and sexy. Let me know what you think!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Flirty Friday

I'm in the middle of having not a lot to talk about because I wore myself out chatting with tour guests. I think the characters are ignoring me. Hey, they get irritated when they feel left out. It happens a lot. So since they are being themselves, I wanted to post this article. My youngling loves Captain Underpants, so when I read this list, yeah, I laughed. It's sad. But first...Banned Book Week? Really? I mean, why would anyone ban a book? Just because the ideas aren't your own, doesn't mean it should be banned. That's silly. Yes, there are instances when things aren't popular or when they cause bodily harm. But I love this idea:

The American Library Association's Banned Books Week runs from Sept. 25 through Oct. 2 this year. Ever wonder how it started?

September 1982: Judith Krug establishes Banned Books Week
Banned Books Week is an annual event that takes place during the last week in September. It dates back to 1982, when librarian Judith Krug, then director of the ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom, established the event. She intended it to be a yearly tribute to writers, their works and the United States' Constitution that guarantees freedom of expression.

1992, 1995 and beyond: Family Friendly Libraries moves to ensure age-appropriate material selections in public libraries
Family Friendly Libraries was founded to help parents and educators who find reading materials that they consider inappropriate for the age groups they are said to serve. The organization stands in opposition to the ALA and Banned Books Week, which it considers an "annual publicity campaign" of the ALA to slam "requests made by citizens in local libraries for books to be relocated to a section aimed at older readers or removed due to objectionable content."

September 2002: Focus on the Family challenges banned books 'lie'
Focus on the Family, a conservative Christian organization, takes on the ALA. Tom Minnery, at the time the group's vice president of public policy, said, "The ALA has irresponsibly perpetrated the 'banned' books lie for too long." The organization objects to the use of the banned-books mantle to cover up the gradual inclusion of "sexually explicit or violent material for schoolchildren."

December 2008: Apple app store rejects Nook for 'objectionable content'
Banned books are not always of the ink-on-paper variety. In 2008 Apple made headlines when rejecting e-book title Knife Music for "objectionable content." Apple's software development guidelines state: "Applications must not contain any obscene, pornographic, offensive or defamatory content or materials of any kind (text, graphics, images, photographs, etc.), or other content or materials that in Apple's reasonable judgment may be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod touch users."

2009 to 2010: Three books banned at U.S. schools
The Vampire Academy and House of Night series were banned at Henderson Junior High School (Texas). Running with Scissors was banned at Gaither and Riverview high schools (Florida) for "graphic pedophile situations" and other content unsuitable for younger readers.

Sept. 25 to Oct. 2, 2010: Banned Books Week
The ALA encourages readers to celebrate their freedom to read. In addition to the American Library Association, this year's commemoration is sponsored by the American Booksellers Association, the Library of Congress Center for the Book, the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, the National Association of College Stores, the Association of American Publishers and the American Society of Journalists and Authors.
(courtesy of:

And then there's this: (Had to add this)(courtesy of:
The pen is mightier than the sword and, apparently, it can also be more offensive. Many of us have read the most commonly banned and challenged classics, including "The Great Gatsby," "The Catcher in the Rye," "1984" and "Catch-22." Some of the other titles on the list of banned and challenged books may surprise you.

"Captain Underpants"
Some folks had their underwear in a bunch over this children's book series by Dav Pilkey. The "Captain Underpants" series -- about two fourth-graders and their superhero of a principal -- was one of the top 10 most frequently banned and challenged books for 2002, 2004 and 2005. The books were said to contain offensive language, to be sexually explicit and to be anti-family.

"The Lord of the Rings"
J.R.R Tolkien's book was burned, not in the fires of Mount Doom, but outside of a church in Alamogordo, N.M., in 2001 because it was viewed as "Satanic."

Merriam Webster Collegiate Dictionary
When it comes to banning books, even the dictionary gets no respect. The Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary was pulled from the shelf of a school in Menifee, Calif. The offending term in the dictionary? "Oral sex." The entry references of the dictionary also included cunnilingus and fellatio, which were not cited as the reasons for pulling the dictionary off the shelf. Merriam-Webster has been publishing language reference books for more than 150 years. They were bound to offend someone along the way.

"Fahrenheit 451"
Could a book about censorship really be banned? Absolutely. Enter "Fahrenheit 451" by Ray Bradbury. The book has been banned by the Mississippi School District (1999). It's also No. 69 on the American Library Association's list of top banned/challenged books from 2000 to 2009.

Harry Potter series
One of the most surprising banned books sits at the No. 1 spot on the ALA list. It's not even a book. It's the entire Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. The Harry Potter series is to teens what "Star Wars" was to an entire generation of now-40-somethings. The series has been challenged for occultism, Satanism, violence, being anti-family and having religious viewpoint. The series is No. 1 on the ALA's most challenged book list for 2000 to 2009.

"The Grapes of Wrath"
John Steinbeck's "The Grapes of Wrath" is not just another classic on the list. The book was originally banned in California due to obscenity, but the catalyst behind the banning was based more in embarrassment: The people in the region did not like how their area and the workers' situation was portrayed in the novel.

"Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?"
Most parents of kids under 5 have seen Eric Carle's art accompanying the book by Bill Martin. The Texas Board of Education banned the book, in January 2010, because it thought the book was written by the same Bill Martin who penned the nonchildren's book "Ethical Marxism: The Categorical Imperative of Liberation."

"James and the Giant Peach"
Author Roald Dahl is no stranger to being banned. His book "The Witches" is on the ALA's 100 most frequently challenged books for 1990 to 1999 for its depictions of women and witches. But what about James and his peach? Was there witchcraft at work? James was disobedient and there was violence in the book.

American Heritage Dictionary (1969)
The American Heritage Dictionary of 1969 was also banned in 1978 from a library in Eldon, Mo., because of 39 objectionable words. The dictionary continued to cause trouble as far away as Alaska, where it was banned by the Anchorage School Board in 1987 for its inclusion of slang words, including "balls."

Grimm's Fairy Tales
Fairy tales have always held a precarious place in children's literature. On one side, readers have fairy-tale purists who lament the morals lost in fairy tales that have been too cleaned up. Others object to any violence in fairy tales. A couple of California school districts found a whole new reason to ban Grimm's Fairy Tales in 1989: misuse of alcohol. Little Red Riding Hood's basket for her grandmother includes wine. Maybe it wasn't a California red.