Friday, September 30, 2016 | By: Cafe
If you fight your destiny you will be miserable. You must embrace it and revel in every moment.
- from The Librarian and the Judas Chalice

Thursday, September 29, 2016 | By: Cafe

Kristina Knight: What the Gambler Risks

Welcome back Kristina!  We’re all anxious to hear about Book 3 in your Billionaire Cowboys series.


WHAT THE GAMBLER RISKS
     Twenty-something ice queen Sabrina Smith enjoys fame and fortune writing about her life of celibacy. The fact she's the Oldest Living (Supposed) Virgin in Vegas? Just keeps her readers interested in how she juggles dating, working and friendships in Sin City.
     Jase Reeves knows Sabrina's secret – that she's not nearly as cold as she would like people to think – and he's through keeping it. He didn't intend to have a one night stand with the Vegas Virgin but he can't get her out of his head.
     When Jase returns to Vegas, Sabrina has one goal: stay away from the handsome gambler before he melts her career – and her heart.


If What the Gambler Risks was made into a movie, who would play your main characters, and why? 
Ooh, good question! I actually have  Pinterest board filled with all kinds of inspiration pics - including the characters! I picture Sabrina as a Kaley Cuoco type - only wearing glasses from time to time...and I could totally see Josh Henderson playing Jase. I loved him in the Dallas reboot from a couple of years ago!

We all need a hero! Tell us about your protagonist(s)? Was there a real-life inspiration behind him or her?
Other than for my inspiration board, no. I am fascinated by gamblers, specifically the professional poker players. Their ability to school their features and read other players is so interesting, so it was fun delving into that world to develop Jase's character. 

Give us an interesting fun fact (or a few) about your book or series. 
The series is set in Las Vegas, one of my favorite destinations. RadioMan keeps telling me we're going to retire there, and although I haven't said yes yet...I just might! The three brothers, Connor, Jase and Gage, kind of raised themselves, and they watched a lot of old movies along the way. It was really fun to work in references to some of my favorite movies (the Star Trek franchises, The Truman Show and The Big Lebowski) as I was writing.

What does your writing process look like? 
My process is always evolving. I try to draft as fast as I can, just getting the bones of the story on the screen. From there, I go back and take more time to flesh out character goals and motivations and (hopefully) hit the right notes with those conflicts!

You’ve written several series. What advice would you give to an author writing his/her first series?
Create a series bible. Seriously! My cast of characters was fairly small with this series - the brothers, their women, and a couple of recurring characters - but having all of those little details like eye color and accents in a single place was so handy!

If you could change ONE thing about your book, what would it be?  Why? 
If I went through looking for one thing to change, I'd find at least twenty...so I'm going to cheat and say nothing! Once I turn in those final edits, I really try not to look back. My process is very much about the next book, not the previous one.

Where did your love of books/storytelling/reading/writing/etc. come from?
I've always been a bookaholic. My mom read to us when we were little, and I think that started my obsession. Along the way, I realized that the books I read are very much like movies because I 'see' the scenes playing out as I read the words on the page. Those movies in my mind keep me coming back to books all the time.

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? 
Always, always! Right now I'm obsessed with Jessica Lemmon's 'Billionaire' series (go figure! lol). If you haven't checked those books out, go forth!

Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad? 
I don't respond to them, but I am aware of them. My advice on reviews, in general, is not to read them, good or bad. Because if you start out reading the good, sooner or later a bad one will creep in and ruin your day.

What is your best marketing tip? 
Be friendly and personable. Social media has created the ability to really get to know readers and authors, and I think it's great, but you have to be authentic in those interactions. Share the good, be silly if you like being silly, be serious if you prefer serious, but think of social media as an extension of who you are in real life.

What is your favorite place or way to meet readers? 
I attended my first book signing this summer and it was amazingly fun. But random meet-ups in our local bookstore is right up there at the top of the list, too!

What question do you wish that someone would ask about your book, but nobody has? 
I can't think of anything that hasn't been asked that I want to be asked! I'm sorry!!

What’s up next for Kristina Knight? 
I'm in the middle of my first series - right now I have 4 full length books contracted, but I have ideas for several novellas and more single titles, too. The books are small town, contemporary romances that center on a group of guys who made their town famous through football...and are now dealing with real life post-football. It's been really fun to write! The books will be out next year.


Best-selling author Kristina Knight's Billionaire Cowboys are back for one final ride with this seductive story of long-simmering feelings and hot Vegas nights.

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
iB
KOBO:


Excerpt

     “One more hand. Winner buys the loser a drink?”
She tilted her water bottle toward him. “I already have a drink.”
Jase snickered but was careful to keep the sound light and friendly. “That’s not a drink.” He lifted his glass of soda water with lime to his mouth. Most people wouldn’t consider the contents of his glass a real drink, either, but he rarely drank when he played. Alcohol and cards did not mix well in Jase’s opinion. “What do you have to lose?” he pressed.
  “We’ll see,” she said, not meeting his gaze directly, and he was 75 percent positive she was on her way to a yes.
The dealer switched decks and then dealt the cards. Jase had random cards in his hands, but he didn’t care. The woman studied her hand, one manicured nail tapping against the cards. Considering.
“Twenty,” she said, throwing a chip on the table.
“Raise to forty,” Jase said, tossing two chips on the table. The best plan of attack when the cards in his hand were useless was to make her think he held something amazing. He didn’t bluff in real card games, but despite her two wins, he didn’t peg this woman as a true card player. If she were a regular player, she wouldn’t be so transparent about what she held in her hands.
The woman blinked, and her teeth began nibbling at her lower lip.
“Are you in?” he asked, a bit more forcefully than was necessary.
Her finger tapped faster against the cards in her hand. “I’ll take three,” she said and slid three cards to the dealer.
As soon as her new cards were in her hands, Jase said, “I’ll stand.” And he stacked his worthless cards with all the careless confidence he used in high-stakes games around the globe. The kind of confidence that made big-time, big-money gamblers think twice about going against him in the second betting round.
The woman circled her index finger around her remaining green chip, considering her options. Call, take the gamble, lose, and have a drink with him. Of course, it would take a truly pitiful hand to lose to what he held. She could fold and have a drink with him. She could also call his bluff and, depending on the cards in her own hand, win. He didn’t like the thought of her winning, but if her winning at the table landed the two of them at the bar, was it really a loss for him?
“Call,” she said, and Jase felt a wave of admiration for his opponent. Which was not good, because if she was calling she had to have something in her hand, and he had a big, fat zero. Which meant she would win. Jase didn’t like to lose, especially at poker, not even when it was a friendly game instead of a high-stakes match with thousands of dollars to lose.
She laid down her cards: three queens, a two, and a ten.
“Three of a kind. Nice.”
“I was hoping for a full house.”
“I was hoping you’d fold, so I could buy you that drink,” he said and laid his cards—all four suits, random order—on the table.
“Nice bluff, I almost folded.”
“If it had been a better bluff, you would have folded.” He watched her for a moment across the table. “Now you have to buy me the drink; all in all, not a bad night at the table.”
The woman pushed back from the table, pulling the pot in the middle to her side. Jase pocketed the chips he had left in his stack. “I never agreed to that bed,” she said, and her hands stilled over the chips. Her gaze flicked to his, and despite the dim light, he saw the flush that crept over her cheeks.
“And here I thought we were just talking about a drink. I have to tell you, I’m not the kind of guy to go off to a strange woman’s hotel room after a lousy hand of poker,” he said with mock outrage.
“Bet. I meant bet.”


About Kristina:  
     Once upon a time, Kristina Knight spent her days running from car crash to fire to meetings with local police--no, she wasn't a troublemaker, she was a journalist. Her career took her all over the United States, writing about everything from a serial killer's capture to the National Finals Rodeo. Along the way, she found her very own Knight in Shining Cowboy Boots and an abiding love for romance novels. And just like the characters from her favorite books, she's living her own happily ever after.
     Kristina writes sassy contemporary romance novels; her books have appeared on Kindle Best Seller Lists. She loves hearing from readers, so drop her a line!

Website        Facebook        Twitter        Pinterest
Goodreads        Google+        Amazon Author Page





Tuesday, September 27, 2016 | By: Cafe

Tuesday Special: Sweet Christmas Kisses 3 Bundle




Ring in the holiday season with 17 all-new, stand-alone stories from New York Times, USA Today, national bestselling, and award-winning authors. Sweet Christmas Kisses 3 takes you around the globe from small-town USA, to London, England, and even to Africa with a foreword written by USA Today Bestselling Author Donna Fasano. Don’t miss out on this sweet romance boxed set that’s sure to touch your heart, make you smile, and put you in the mood for Christmas.

On Christmas Eve by Mona Risk
She yanked him out of her heart years ago. But fate throws him in her path again and his tender gaze erases her loneliness. Can they forgive each other and create a new future?

Christmas Holly by Christine Bush
Can a lonely single father of five-year-old triplets find love on a South Carolina beach? It might just take a Christmas miracle!

Mistletoe and Sage by Lyn Cote
New deputy in town, a single mom, two wounded hearts with a puzzle to solve together—will love spark under the mistletoe?

A Merry Little Christmas by Denise Devine
Merry Connor and Anthony Lewis search for treasure and find true love.

The Christmas Gift by Raine English
When Riley Wayne receives a dog for Christmas, it’s not just the pup that makes her heart flutter, the rescue group’s handsome owner does too.

Untangling Christmas by Shanna Hatfield
Tricked into helping with Silverton’s Festival of Trees, electrician Mike Clarke battles faulty outlets, tangled lights, and a woman determined to share the spirit of the season.

A Christmas on Miracle Mountain by Ciara Knight
When it takes a miracle to heal a heart.

The Kampala Peppermint Twist by Milou Koenings
A twist of fate. An overbooked flight. Christmas in Africa will flip her life upside down.

The Road Not Taken by Magdalena Scott
Francie Standish Carrington has some tough decisions to make and a lot of questions about a past she thought she understood.

A London Christmas by Roxanne Rustand
When Catriona heads to London for Christmas to meet a guy she met online, he steals her purse and disappears, but will a handsome photographer in the pub end up being the man of her dreams?

Her Christmas Secret by Alicia Street
Desperate to help her sister’s family, Lila courts a cold-hearted investor for her handmade toys, but learns Christmas has a way of bringing surprises where they’re least expected.

Falling For You at Christmas by Kristin Wallace
One expectant mother. One gorgeous innkeeper. Three days that will change her life forever.

Second Chance Christmas by Merrillee Whren
A young boy helps his estranged parents find love again at Christmas.

Christmas Eve Wedding by Cindy Flores Martinez
A maid of honor is swept up in the chaos of planning her best friend’s spur-of-the-moment Christmas Eve wedding.

Secret Wish by Victoria Pinder
Luke Morgan doesn’t believe in miracles, but this season Christmas brought him Caro Soliz, the family maid.

Candleglow and Mistletoe by Josie Riviera
A rising pianist and a pro stuntman winding down his career find love amid the glow of Christmas candles.

Couple by Christmas by Pat Simmons
Divorcee Derek Washington wants to reconcile with his ex-wife by Christmas. Although he’s got a plan, with the help of his six-year-old son, Derek only has two weeks.


And don’t forget to connect with the Authors at Sweet Romance Reads:


Or connect with each of the Sweet Romance Reads Authors individually:

A tireless traveler, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Mona Risk, writes contemporary romance, medical romance, and romantic suspense novels, all simmering with emotion, sprinkled with a good dose of humor and set in the fascinating places she visited— or in Florida, her paradise on Earth.

Christine Bush is an award winning author of many sweet romances, mysteries, and novellas.  When she’s not writing, she can be found teaching Psychology at a local college, working as a Marriage and Family Therapist in private practice, or (mostly) spending time with her twelve grandchildren.

Award-winning author of over 40 romances, Lyn Cote writes inspirational historicals and contemporary romantic suspense in her distinctive brand, "Strong Women, Brave Stories." Lyn lives in a cottage on a lake in the northwoods with her real-life hero husband and (for comic relief and furry cuddling) her two cats.

Denise Devine is a USA Today bestselling author of romantic comedy and she also writes inspirational fiction. She wrote her first book, a mystery, at thirteen and has been writing ever since. She writes about true love, happy endings and stories that touch your heart.

USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Raine English writes sweet small-town contemporary romance, paranormal, and romantic suspense. She's a Romance Writers of America Golden Heart finalist and a Daphne du Maurier Award winner. Raine lives in New England with her family and two French bulldogs, Bailey and Dolly.

Convinced everyone deserves a happy ending, hopeless romantic, USA Today bestselling author Shanna Hatfield is out to make it happen one story at a time. Her sweet historical and contemporary romances combine humor and heart-pumping moments and relatable characters.

Ciara Knight
is a USA Today and Amazon Bestselling author who writes 'A Little Edge and A Lot of Heart' that spans the heat scales. Her popular sweet romance series, Sweetwater County (rated PG), takes readers into small town romance full of family trials, friendly competition, and community love. 

Milou Koenings writes heartwarming romance novels because she believes sweet stories with happy endings are like chocolate – they bring joy to the world and so make it a better place. She’s lived all over the world, working as an editor and newspaper columnist, but loves staying home with her family most of all.

USA Today bestselling author Roxanne Rustand is the author of  thirty-five traditionally published novels, plus four indie novels. She was a  Golden Heart  finalist twice, and a Golden Heart winner in 1995.  She has won two RT Magazine Reviewers’ Choice Awards, and was nominated for an RT Magazine Career Achievement Award. Her earlier books were secular, but she now writes sweet indie romance, and inspirational romance for Love Inspired.

USA Today bestselling author Magdalena Scott writes sweet romance and women’s fiction with small town settings. She invites readers into her world to find out what’s hidden just below the surface of those tiny dots you can barely see on the map—mystery, romance, and the occasional unexplained occurrence.
  
Award-winning and USA Today bestselling author Alicia Street writes both sweet and steamy romances and sometimes collaborates with her husband, Roy. She spent many years as a dancer, choreographer, and teacher and is a compulsive reader of every genre. 
  
Kristin Wallace is a USA Today bestselling author of inspirational, contemporary and women’s fiction filled with “Love, Laughter and a Leap of Faith.” Her popular series include the Covington Falls Chronicles and Shellwater Key Tales.

Merrillee Whren is an award-winning author who writes inspirational and sweet romance—stories that stir your emotions. She is married to her own personal hero, her husband of forty plus years, and has two grown daughters.
  
Cindy Flores Martinez is an Amazon bestselling Spanish romance author. She writes sweet romantic comedy and Christian romance. Her debut novel, Mail-Order Groom, started out as a screenplay and movie project, which she shopped around Hollywood, New York, and other parts of the world.

Victoria Pinder is a bestselling author of science fiction/fantasy and contemporary romance where her stories all include “Bold Women and the Brainy Men who love them.” Her popular series include the House of Morgan and the Collins Brothers.
                                                                          
Author Josie Riviera writes Historical, Inspirational, and Sweet Romances. She lives in the Charlotte, NC, area with her wonderfully supportive husband. They share their empty nest with an adorable Shih Tzu who constantly needs grooming and an old house forever needing renovations.

Pat Simmons is a three-time Emma award-winning author for Best Inspirational Romance. With more thirty Christian romance titles, Pat is the bestselling author of the Carmen Sisters series.



Friday, September 23, 2016 | By: Cafe
Do not read, as children do, to amuse yourself, or like the ambitious, for the purpose of instruction. No, read in order to live.
- Gustave Flaubert
Thursday, September 22, 2016 | By: Cafe

Kizzy Saves Charmaine's Day


The Write Way Café welcomes author Charmaine Gordon, who used seven weeks in rehab to write a book.

Right off the bat, like Humpty Dumpty, I had a terrible fall and spent 7 weeks in rehab. My best pal, Judy Audevard, president of Paws for a Cause, a well known group of people with Therapy Dogs, received the word. "My best friend is injured and she needs some love from the pups." Come they did in droves wearing their little or big red vests ready to give me love and kisses. I had the idea of writing a book of what these dogs mean to the owners, so I did sitting in a wheelchair every day. The book is not big but it is heartwarming. Here's a taste of one chapter.

By the way, this is not your average romance. Due to be released in October, we are all thrilled with this 99-cent small book I put together.

It all began on 9/11. Well didn't everything? My friend, Judy and Bob drove down to the inferno of what was left of The Tower. There they found dog after dog lined up to work wearing their red vests.

They said to each other, "We must get a dog and teach him to be a therapy dog" and so they did. They named him Kizzy, this shy pooch who needed kindness and love. They brought him home, shivering on Judy's lap and when he got home, his new home, he sniffed around and found, upstairs, Judy's grandmother who had a stroke. Right away, Kizzy cuddled under her chin and she, in return, cuddled back. Love at first sight. The hand that didn't work began to move. All because of the lovely dog.

Judy tells me that over the years, she and her Kizzy have been quite a team. She taught him to dance and entertain the West Pointers, taught them to laugh and to read. Personally, I love this pooch, now seventeen. There are many lovely, warm stories in our small book. I do hope you will enjoy them.

As for me, I have written twenty five books and love each one. Some are composite stories, like She Didn't Say No and the Rivers Edge collection. Reconstruction Charlie is a special tale and turned into a series. The Beginning. . Not The End-a Mature Romance that is so much fun with lots of love and humor. Try them all. You won't regret them.

You can find Charmaine here:
https://authorcharmainegordonwordpress.com/
https://www.facebook.com/charmaine.gordon

Tuesday, September 20, 2016 | By: HiDee

The Devil Is In The Details

A week of camping and hiking is good for the mind, the body, and the muse.  

Sunrise Lodge was our home away from home for vacation last week. Nestled along the western edge of the campground, the small log-cabin style lodge was equipped with a microwave and small fridge, a surprisingly comfortable bed, and a bathroom.  But my favorite amenity was the wooden glider bench on the porch. It was the perfect place to relax with a cool drink and a good book while Hubby fogged our small area for mosquitoes and set up our evening campfires!  After dark, mesmerized by the campfire flames, I felt all my tensions fade away. 

Our hiking destinations were two nearby state parks, offering about 30 miles of trails between the two of them. We spent our days exploring, hiking through canyons and fording streams, climbing sometimes steep trails and climbing and descending so many steps that if I never see another one, it will be too soon. Our timing was perfect, though – with recent rains, the waterfalls were spectacular! We were even able to walk behind one of them. I was sure my body would protest, but each day, I was surprised at how good I really felt. 

Centered between the campground and the parks was a small town that inspired my muse. In the space of a few blocks, biker hangouts stood next to a bakery, followed by artisan shops, a bistro, and museums. Downtown consisted of maybe two blocks of businesses, including several bar and grills, wine tasting storefronts, a popcorn store and the public library. Across the railroad tracks, a bar with a pizza garden led the way uphill to other businesses: a tattoo parlor, a fencing company, a pizza place, and gift shops. 

My muse was going crazy! Bikers and artisans coexisting? Were there events going on that we didn’t know about, or was this the makeup of the town? How did the townspeople feel about having several bar and grills in the space of two blocks? How did the Bistro fit in? What about competing wineries? 

We learned that the town is a hotspot on weekends, with many of the businesses open only Friday through Sunday. Bikers filled the local Trading Post and another hangout, and the artisan shops and museums were filled with their own clientele. During the week, though, the town seemed almost deserted. Except for one bar and grill, probably better known as a pub, where we ate lunch one day. The place was filled with old memorabilia and had a unique “Hall of Foam” – a number of plaques filled with names of those who were able to drink 16 beers in one sitting. The catch: you can’t drink 16 Buds or whatever you like. They have 16 different beers on tap, most of them craft beers. In order to get in the “Hall of Foam” you are required to drink one glass from each tap. I'm not a beer-drinker, so my tastebuds shudder at the thought!

My muse was fascinated. How can people survive doing business only three days a week? Do the people have other “day” jobs? Where do they live; where do they play? Where did the pub come up with their “Hall of Foam”? What other unique things did we not discover?

So many thoughts jumbled together, and then drifted to my WIP. What could I learn from viewing this community? How do I create a community that makes an impact on readers?

I think the devil is in the details…  



Friday, September 16, 2016 | By: Cafe
Tension is wonderful for making people laugh.
– John Cleese
Thursday, September 15, 2016 | By: Cafe

Victoria Pinder: Inside the House of Morgan




The Write Way Café welcomes Victoria Pinder, with a peek Inside the House of Morgan.

Dear Reader,

I have always loved stories with big families and lots of dramatic things that happen to them. I am a huge prime time fan and I can get sucked into a English translated telenovela fast. I have always wanted to write stories that implemented high drama with larger than life personalities. I’ve been working on the Morgan  family for over a year. I had to figure out this family and wonder what happens next that kept me surprised and interfered with the characters love life.

First I had to come up with the family and their background. The major villain in all the stories is the guy who died in chapter one of the first book, Mitch Morgan. He was the patriarch of this family.  What could a father do that kept all the children unhappy with everything in their lives that doesn’t involve physical abuse? (Emotional is in many ways more interesting for a villain.)

The possibilities were endless. Then what happened to the mother of the children? How would adult children in this super billionaire family be if the father was as awful as I realized Mitch was? In the first book John Morgan had joined the FBI simply to find evidence that might put his father in jail and how does he act when he failed at this mission.

I had to know and I had to learn who all the Morgans were and I hope all my readers find this family as fascinating as I do.  Inside the House of Morgan, anything might happen.




For some, joining the FBI is a long-term goal. For billionaire John Morgan, joining the Bureau is a stepping stone to proving his father is culpable for his sister’s death. After his estranged father dies, John is forced to return home and face the ghosts of his past. That proves to be more difficult than he could have ever imagined.

Alice Collins lives a peaceful life. As a farmer’s daughter, she knows what it’s like to work hard for what you want. After losing her best friend under inexplicable circumstances, her world viewpoint shifted until her small town sensibilities convinced her to attend Mr. Morgan’s funeral.

Soon, the past and the present collide and Alice is caught in the crosshairs. John comes to her aid, complicating matters for both of them.

Can a handsome billionaire on a vendetta truly fall for a small town girl or does he have something else in mind? Can a small town girl, if she gives her heart to him, ever fit of the House of Morgan?

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/HfCdG_xtlfY

**Available September 19**
Pre-Order Here:  Amazon      Barnes & Noble       iTunes     Kobo

Excerpt:
     John leaned against the wall and let the throngs of people pass. Alice followed suit, standing next to him as she sipped her wine. "I assumed he was taking over. Did you want that job?"
     John's entire body jumped as if she'd slapped him. "Hell no."
     She gulped her sip fast. She kept saying the wrong thing. Inside his blue eyes was a kaleidoscope of emotion. Alice remembered that he used to be kind. She rubbed her lips together. "Then who cares?"
     He drank his wine and scanned the room. After making the rounds with his gaze, he took in her entire figure with an intensity that made her knees weak. "What is it you do, Alice?"
     "Collins Organic Farm." She brushed her brown bob behind her ear. "I work for my family. What is it you do?"
     Again, his blue eyes flashed as if lightning was in his stare. She watched him, hypnotized. "I work in real estate."
     "Liar." She tilted her head. He definitely didn't work in real estate. She crossed her arm around her chest. Without another word, she waited for the fallout of her remark.
     His eyebrows quirked in shock. Then his dimples appeared. "What do you think I do?"
     She met his smile with her own. "Professional bad boy and poker player. It's what I always thought."
     He chuckled. "I played football."
     She nodded. A moment of silence clung in the air as she sipped her drink. Then she said, "I went to your games in high school, but I also remember how you set up more than a few poker games. You always read people correctly."
     His sexy smile lit the room and her skin melted, literally fused into itself. "I remember that. You cheered with my sister, and I played you, too."


About Victoria:
     Victoria Pinder grew up in Irish Catholic Boston before moving to the Miami sun. She’s worked in engineering, after passing many tests proving how easy Math came to her. Then hating her life at the age of twenty four, she decided to go to law school. Four years later, after passing the bar and practicing very little, she realized that she hates the practice of law. She refused to one day turn 50 and realize she had nothing but her career and hours at a desk. After realizing she needed change, she became a high school teacher. Teaching is rewarding, but writing is a passion.
     During all this time, she always wrote stories to entertain herself or calm down. Her parents are practical minded people demanding a job, and Victoria spent too many years living other people’s dreams, but when she sat down to see what skill she had that matched what she enjoyed doing, writing became so obvious. The middle school year book when someone wrote in it that one day she’d be a writer made sense when she turned thirty.
     She’s always been determined. She is amazing, adventurous and assured on a regular basis. Her website is www.victoriapinder.com.
     Member of Florida Romance Writers, Contemporary Romance, Celtic Hearts and Savvy Authors.

Get a FREE Novella as a Thank you Gift here: http://victoriapinder.com/returningforvalentineshorttimeoffer



Tuesday, September 13, 2016 | By: Cafe

Tuesday Special: Kathleen Shaputis

KathleenShaputis
https://kathleenshaputis.com/



Independent and dedicatedly single, Rogue Bruce enjoys running Castle Baillie with her Aunt Baillie from America. They specialize in romantic Elizabethan-themed weddings, complete with resident ghost, Lord Kai (nothing like a haunted castle to set the mood for love). But love is something Rogue is not the least bit interested in. Content with her work and stable of horses, no man is necessary for her happiness.

Matchmaking is in the air, though, focusing on local Bruce MacKenzie, a Thor-look-alike in jeans, and outsider Jonathan Olson, a snobbish Rhett Butler type. With two men after her heart (she’d thought safely locked away), Rogue is torn with confusion. Murder and a psychic yank the soundtrack of Rogue’s life from romantic to scary, while she has choices to make in this sizzling triangle.

Amazon      Barnes & Noble


Kathleen Shaputis, author/ghostwriter, lives in the glorious Pacific Northwest with her husband, Bob, a clowder of cats and three pompously protective Pomeranians with little social aptitude: Brugh, Bouncer and Miss Jazzy. If not writing, she’s busy reading and watching romantic comedies, her ultimate paradise.

Website       Twitter        Facebook

https://Herghostwearskilts.com

Friday, September 9, 2016 | By: Cafe
We know that in September, we will wander through the warm winds of summer's wreckage. We will welcome summer's ghost. 
- Henry Rollins
Thursday, September 8, 2016 | By: Cafe

An Interview with Ingrid Hahn

The Write Way Café welcomes Ingrid Hahn, who is excited about the learning opportunities inherent in a writing career.

When did you first have the thought you'd like to write a book? Was that first thought related to writing romance?
I wrote my first steamy story in the 8th grade. It starred my best friend and her then-celebrity crush. So it was fated that eventually, after being mis-directed into deadly dull office work for too many years, I became a full-time romance writer. I used to entertain myself during the long days in Corporate Land by sketching characters and plot ideas in the back of notebooks.

What was your path to getting this book written and published? What type of research did you do?
My first release, TO WIN A LADY’S HEART, began as a short story. One of the editorial directors at Entangled liked it, but thought there was too much going on for the length and asked me to resubmit the story at full category length. Because there is a very subtle Christmas theme that became even more subtle as I re-wrote the story, I researched Regency Era Christmas traditions. Most of that research, however, didn’t make it into the book.

Where did the idea for your story come from?
My story idea started with character. I wanted to write a very, very nice hero, someone who put honor first and who would never fail to do the right thing. As I rewrote the story, he took on new dimensions with severe social anxiety. I tortured him more by making him love the heroine from afar for many years. Then, when he sets out to win her, everything he tries backfires.

Why did you pick the setting you did?
The Regency Era is so much fun. It’s incredibly modern, while at the same time having many social norms that would be distinctly alien to us living today. There is a ton going on—fabulous fashion, interesting discoveries, a mad king, several wars—and, among the readership, an expectation of amazing dialogue between the hero and heroine.

Are your main characters completely imaginary or do they have some basis in real people? Do they reflect aspects of yourself?
Wholly imaginary. I put bits and pieces of certain aspects of myself into the main characters, but more their preferences for things like chocolate or reading than personality traits. I think if I tried to base my characters on myself or other people, it could too easily start reading like parody, and the readers would pick up on that in an instant.

Did you face any blocks while writing the book, and if so, how did you handle them? If not, what's your secret?
Between submitting the original draft as a short story and getting the revise and resubmit request from Entangled, I got pregnant. Never having been pregnant before, I had no idea what to expect. And that first trimester was brutal. The fatigue was unbearable. When I wasn’t sleeping, I felt like I was living in a fog. I couldn’t concentrate, I couldn’t cook, I couldn’t do regular household chores—I basically couldn’t keep up with the basic necessities for survival, so I certainly wasn’t able to write. They were long, lonely weeks. I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to write again. Thankfully, right around week 16, I regained some energy and was able to get back to work. I have no secret. I just had to wait it out. Knowing that I made it through relatively unscathed and have an amazing child out of the bargain, I think next time I’d be able to better trust that I would eventually be able to return to my writing.

What have been surprises you've encountered while writing the book and after?
I was definitely surprised by how much I learned during the process of revising and resubmitting, then again when I went through edits with my lovely and super sharp editor, Erin Molta. I’ve been at this writing things for six or seven (maybe eight?) years and have many, many manuscripts on the ol’ hard drive, both finished and unfinished. What was valuable for me about seeing how much I learned is knowing that I will always have something to learn. I will always have new ways of challenging myself, I will always have new craft ideas and insights to experiment with, and I will always be able to strive to improve. That’s exciting. It’s going to keep this job fresh and exciting for years to come.

What did you learn? For instance, what did you learn about yourself, your process, the writing world; about the social mores of Regency times?
I learned that at the very end of the process after going through the story so many times for so many different passes that I could more easily let go of the book than I anticipated. I didn’t think it was perfect—far from it—but there was a time I was absolutely ready to leave well enough alone and move on. I’m a strong believer in taking imperfect action, and I don’t just talk the talk, either. If I waited for something to be perfect, nothing would ever get done. Didn’t do something as well as I would have liked the first time? No problem, I can strive to do better the next time. It’s a very freeing philosophy.

Tell us about your writing space and how or why it works for you.
These days, with a wild toddler running around eager to get into everything, I take what I can get! We’re also between houses because after we sold our home, the deal on the house we were trying to buy fell through, and I don’t have a dedicated office space in our apartment. My child’s babysitter comes four days a week for two hours. I hand him over, race upstairs, hop onto the bed, and dive in. Some days this works better than others depending on how many times my child woke me up during the night and how easy it was to get back to sleep after the disruption.

What are some of your favorite books and why?
I have so many romance authors I love—I have quite a substantial number of books on my keeper shelf, so I will focus on other genres for this question so I don’t inadvertently forget to mention a favorite author.
  • CURSE OF CHALLION by Lois McMaster Bujold is incredible. It’s fantasy and doesn’t follow the usual mold. The worldbuilding is some of the best I’ve ever encountered and the main character leaps off the page.
  • PEOPLE OF THE BOOK by Geraldine Brooks, which is fabulous for its historical detail and concept.
  • The first two thirds of HALF BROKE HORSES by Jeannette Walls is excellent.
I love a strong, distinct, and beautiful voice. I love books that are all-engrossing and have a strong concept without overreaching.

What are you working on now?
My current writing project is book number three of the Landon Sisters series I started with TO WIN A LADY’S HEART. The book is called TO SEDUCE A LADY’S HEART. This has not been an easy one for me. Book number two, TO COVET A LADY’S HEART (due out in February 2017!) was a breeze. The characters were feisty and larger-than-life, and the conflict was strong. No sooner was I dusting off my hands from that project and starting the new one that I started struggling. I couldn’t get a handle on my characters.

I pushed through to about 45K and had to throw everything away. I restarted just about from scratch, keeping only the main characters (but altering them significantly—if I thought they were wet rags, I can’t imagine how let down my editor would have been had I turned that crap in to her). It was not as difficult a decision as one might think. Yes, it was hard to lose that much work, but I’m a few chapters into the re-write and it’s so much stronger. This is a book I will be able to put my name on and still be able to hold my head up in a room full of writers.

Would you like to try your hand at writing a different genre?  Which one and why?
Gothic. Absolutely no question. Something historical that might or might not have an romantic element.

If you were not a writer, what would your dream job be?
Not a writer…that barely computes! Maybe a painter. I’d go nuts if I weren’t creating something.

What aspect of writing gives you the most trouble?
Conflict! That’s a tough one to nail down, but absolutely the most critical.

Who is your favorite hero/heroine?
My own hero and heroine, definitely Phoebe & Max who have my second book coming in February, TO COVET A LADY’S HEART. They were both larger than life and absolutely leapt off the page. Feisty, too. He blackmails her—then she blackmails him right back.



She has lost everything but her dignity...
England, 1811. When John Merrick, the Earl of Corbeau, is caught in a locked storeroom with Lady Grace, he has but one choice—marry her. He cannot bear to tarnish any woman’s reputation, least of all Lady Grace’s.

Lady Grace Landon will do anything to help her mother and sisters, crushed and impoverished by her father’s disgrace. But throwing herself into the arms of her dearest friend’s older brother to trap him in marriage? Never.

Corbeau needs to prove that he loves her, despite her father’s misdeeds. After years of being an object of scorn, not even falling in love with Corbeau alters Lady Grace’s determination to not bring her disrepute upon another. However, if they don’t realize that the greatest honor is love given freely without regard to society’s censure, they stand to lose far more than they ever imagined.

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About Ingrid: Ingrid Hahn is a failed administrative assistant with a B.A. in Art History. Her love of reading has turned her mortgage payment into a book storage fee, which makes her the friend who you never want to ask you for help moving. Though originally from Seattle, she now lives in the metropolitan DC area with her ship-nerd husband, small son, and four opinionated cats. When she’s not reading or writing, she loves knitting, theater, nature walks, travel, history, and is a hopelessly devoted fan of Jane Austen.

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Tuesday, September 6, 2016 | By: Cafe

What are You Licensed to Do?

License to …

I’m writing this on a Friday. Today I have a do-to list and I feel the need to be productive. I’m planning to write this post, work on my WIP, sweep, make some phone calls, and probably do some promotional stuff for my books. All very productive and on task.

But tomorrow is Saturday. On Saturday, do I have a license to relax? Probably not, because Saturday is a day to be productive or at least plan something to do, even if it’s social. It’s got me thinking about reasons for what I do (habit, programming, necessity) and feeling the license to do…whatever.

My son recently introduced me to the Bullet Journal system to me. Quoting the website, “The Bullet Journal is a customizable and forgiving organization system. It can be your to-do list, sketchbook, notebook, and diary, but most likely, it will be all of the above. It will teach you to do more with less.” I am a list maker and I’m finding a license to make lists in my Bullet Notebook. It’s fun! So here’s my list of circumstances under which I have a “license to do …” and what those things are. 

·         Sunday – Sunday is a do nothing day for me. I spent a lot of years in the past going to church on Sunday and socializing afterward. These days, Sunday is the day to stay in pajamas all day and read or enjoy time conversing with my husband. It’s also become a time to socialize with my children and their spouses. Either way, I have license to relax.

·         Children – Having children available has given me license to ride the water slide at a sort of advanced age. I’ve stood on the platform at the top of the water slide a bit self-conscious about my cellulite riddled legs but feeling comfortable with a young niece holding my hand. I mean, I have to do fun things like that with a child.

·         Fitness walking – Where I live there is a wonderful trail that traverses the city, over rivers and through wooded areas. It’s great for walking. But walking it also gives me license to stop writing or delay housework and get outside. Fitness walking is a good activity to improve and maintain health. It also gives me license to chat with family or friends for however long we decide to walk. It’s not just a way to avoid writing or housework, and it’s not goofing off.

·         Writing – When I began writing professionally, I finally had reasons to write sayings or interesting words – like “acute” – on pieces of paper. I was doing it anyway, but now it had a legitimate purpose. Writing also offers an opportunity to listen to music, make up stuff, and explore themes, characterization, and complexities of human relations. Oh, and sit and savor coffee.

·         Research – Along with writing comes the need to conduct research. I find it fun. I don’t know, I feel I’ve always been curious by nature about anything and everything. My mind is full of questions. What do bounty hunters like to be called? Recovery agents. What is the natural habitat of lynxes in the United States? The remote Northwest forests. I also love doing interviews with expert sources. It’s fun and fascinating to interact with different kinds of people. I can be noisy without need for an apology.

Both research and writing make it acceptable to spend an afternoon at the bookstore and purchase more books. No, I do not have too many books.

·         Overwhelmed – Being overwhelmed is not fun. It can raise anxiety and create chronic stress that can affect creativity, peace of mind, and memory. It makes me lose sleep and snap at my husband. Though I strive for balance, it doesn’t always happen. But overwhelm gives me license to just sit and do nothing. Let my insides rest. So I feel it is not only comfortable in those times to lie in bed and chill, but I find it necessary. A really “good” overwhelm can make a strong case for allowing my mind and body to simply exist, while sitting on the couch (maybe reading for pleasure), lying in bed with my cat and enjoying her presence in my life, or finding a spot under a tree at a local park and just soaking in the nature all around. All of these things are made better with a delicious cup of coffee, of course.

In the spirit of license and lists, under what circumstances do you have license to do what?