Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year


What’s the best thing about New Year’s Eve?

Anything that happened last year that you want to forget and pretend never happened? No problem, put it behind you and move on—it’s a whole new year!

Anything you want to happen? It’s a whole new year, anything is possible. Dream big, its all good.

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Get some Mistletoe Magic for Christmas






From the pens of Cindy Spencer Pape, Regina Carlysle and Desiree Holt, a series of Christmas tales to heat you up no matter how cold the night.
Released by Ellora's Cave
Get them at http://www.jasminejad.com/

When Glimmer, Sparkle and Will, three of Santa's elves, get themselves on his bad list, the only way they can redeem themselves is by solving the rormanrtic problems of the three Woodward sisters....and maybe solving some problems of their own.

Book 1 in the Mistletoe Magic series by Regina Carlysle
BREATH OF MAGIC starts the series with a brief prologue that sets up the series and explains the circumstaces that lead all three Woodward sisters back home to Texas.Powerhouse attorney Liza Woodward knows a little something about losing control and it’s been her life’s mission never to do it again, especially when it comes to small-town lawyer Tyler Blackwell. Liza returns determined to settle her parents estate and to leave just as fast as she arrived, but her younger sister Maddie has other plans, ones that have Liza coming face to face with the one man she's tried to forget. Attorney Tyler Blackwell has never forgotten the one that got away, Liza was all he was looking for in a woman and a wife, but a large misunderstanding had Liza running from him faster than a Texas tornado. He knows she’s back in town he intend to settle their differences and pick up where they left off. Ty takes one look at the woman he’s always loved and knows it’s way past time he seduced away the control she wears like a suit of armor. It will take a steady hand, a bit of dominance, and a little breath of magic from a Christmas Elf to win this sassy Texas woman.
But he wants it all and this time he playing for keeps.These two square off and heat up the pages from the moment they meet again. You can feel the passion and sadly the tension as they see each other at Tyler’s Office/Home when Liza comes over to begin settling her parent’s estate. Neither of them put up much of a fight and when Will, the Elf charged with aiding in Ty and Liza’s reconciliation, turns up the heat and the snow. All bets are off when these two give in to temptation

Book 2 in the Mistletoe Magic series by Desiree Holt
TOUCH OF MAGIC is the story of Maddie Woodward. She's the middle sister and the one that is the most in tune with the ranch the girls were raised on. Determined to leave her career behind she's ready to come home permanently.Maddie Woodward is in a pickle. The last person she expects to see when she returns to the family ranch for one last Christmas is her former lover, Zach Brennan. He’s hotter as he ever was, all male and determined to get her naked. She’s just as determined to show him she’s over him—until she ends up in his bed, enjoying the wildest sex of her life. A night of uncontrolled, erotic sex shows her that Zach is far from out of her life. Now if she can just get him to help her convince her sisters not to sell the ranch… Maddie is, the middle sister and the one who doesn’t want to let the ranch be sold. She returns to Texas fully intending to take over the Ranch and to finally live the life she’s always wanted. She is the one who wanted to follow in her parent’s footsteps even though they encouraged her to see a life outside of the Flying W. Zach Brennan has one regret in life, letting Maddie Woodward go, now that she’s back and they both want the Flying W he’ll do whatever it takes to make Maddie his again, even if it means swallowing his pride to do it. Maddie has spirit and a spunk that can only be described as ornery. She’s a homebody; she loves to cook and is as fiery as she is sweet. When she clashes wills with Zach look out cause the sparks will fly. Zach by his own admission has made mistakes but he’s man enough to admt them and fight for what he wants. He’s a cowboy through and through.
Book 3 in the Mistletoe Magic series by Cindy Spencer Pape
WHISPERS OF MAGIC is the story of the last and ironically the youngest Woodward sister, Jenna is a free spirit with a wanders soul. She finds herself coming home as she faces a crossroads in her life. What she discovers is home may very well be where the heart is. She's living proof that size doesn't matter when in your heart lives the soul of an adventurer. Her return home is just the balm her wounded heart needs.Mitch Sterling knew he scared Jenna away with his dominate ways and he’s been kicking himself every since. When he realizes she’s coming home for Christmas he knows that he has to turn up the heat to get the one woman for him.Book 3 in the Mistletoe Magioc series by Regina Carlysle
In WHISPERS OF MAGIC, hoping to get back in Santa’s good graces, Sparkle the elf takes on a difficult assignment—arrange a merry Christmas for photojournalist Jenna, who has just lost her parents, her job, and her cheating “fiancé”. Rancher Mitch Sterling doesn’t want his face on a book, but he does want Jenna back in his life. He offers a deal—he’ll sign off, if she agrees to be at his mercy for one day. Jenna left him once because she was afraid of his Dominant lifestyle. Now, with help from a magical snowstorm, Mitch has twenty-four hours of tempestuous passion to convince her that she’ll love being his sub. Jenna is like many women she believes she lives in the shadow of her sisters, not really seeing how much she does shine. She’s adventurous and open-minded which makes her the perfect woman for Mitch. She let her fears get the better f her, yet she faces them head on as she reconnects with Mitch and it’s this bravery that endears her to me. Mitch is the embodiment of the saying Long Tall Texan. These two teat
And watch for the release of ELVEN MAGIC on Christmas Eve, when the three elves find a hot, sexy way to celebrate their success.

http://www.cindyspencerpape.com/
http://www.reginacarlysle.com/
http://www.desireeholt.com/

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

And the winner is....

Thanks to everyone for their great, great comments yesterday. I tossed all the names in my husband's Stetson, and my white kitty picked out...drum roll, please...Genella de Grey. Congratulations. Email me at judithrochelle@judithrochelle.com and tell me whether you want Judith's Scent of Danger or Desiree Holt's Hot Wicked and Wild.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The interesting state of publisihing




Since the very first ebook was released, there seems to have been a line drawn in the sand between print and digital. "What always was should always be." As the ebook industry continued to grow, the print industry continued to find fault with it. Dimionish it. Denegrate it. Longtime print authors were even unkind enough to say that ebook authors aren't "real" authors. Do they really believe this or are they just worried about a new phase of the industry generating its own reader base and cutting into royalties? Rather than join'em, they've choen to fight 'em. But life is full of interesting twists and turns.


Wednesday, December 3, Publisher's Weekly published the following:


“Black Wednesday” for PublishingDecember 3, 2008, was a grim day for a number of New York publishing houses as jobs were cut, lines realigned, and pay raises frozen.
Simon and Schuster cut 35 positions from all areas of the company. The eliminations were “an unavoidable acknowledgment of the current bookselling marketplace,” according to Simon & Schuster CEO Carolyn Reidy.
Random House announced a restructuring of the company, which will consolidate several publishing groups. The Random House Publishing Group will expand to include: Bantam Dell Publishing Group, The Dial Press, and Spiegel & Grau. The Crown Publishing Group will expand to include: Broadway, Doubleday Religion, WaterBrook Multnomah, and Doubleday Business. According to Chairman Markus Dohle, the Random House Publishing Group, Ballantine, Bantam Dell and Random House will continue to have separate editorial departments. “The newly formed publishing groups will continue to bid independently in auctions. Each group will have my full support to publish autonomously, promote aggressively, and strive for more competitive advantages in the marketplace.” (http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6619316.html)
Thomas Nelson cut 54 positions (10 percent of its workforce), its second round of reductions in 2008.
Penguin Group Chairman and CEO John Makinson told employees that the company will not give pay raises to anyone earning $50,000 or more (or the equivalent in another currency) in the new year. He also said, “I cannot of course guarantee that there will be no job losses in Penguin in 2009. In this financial climate that would be plain foolhardy.”

And in this morning's "Shelf Awareness," an enewsletter about the publishing industry, the
following information appeared:

October Sales: Booksellers Slip, Publishers Fall
Publishers' net book sales fell 20.1% to $644.5 million in October, as reported by 80 publishers to the Association of American Publishers. Sales for the year through October were down 3.4% to $8.362 billion.

During this same period E-book sales rose 73% to $5.2 million.

While the total number may be smaller, the growth is astronomical in a short period of time. To what should we attribute it?
1. Cost-ebooks are less expensive
2. Immediacy-buy the book and you have it to read in just minutes
3. Availability-since a finite number is not printed your book can sell and sell and sell
4. The electronic age-with each generation there is mnore and more adaptation to electronics. Rumors have it that the next generation of iPods will also be ereaders.




So what do you think? Are we in the forefront of a movement that will change the face of publishing forever? I think so. Leave me your comments.




Oh, and b y the way. One lucky person's name will be drawn from the comments for a choice of either Scent of Danger by Judith Rochelle or Hot Wicked and Wild by Desiree Holt.



Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Hot Holiday Series starts this week at Ellora's Cave!

Catch the New Series
Mistletoe Magic
coming this December
from Ellora’s Cave

Dec. 12: #1: Breath of Magic by Regina Carlysle:

Powerhouse attorney Liza Woodward knows a little something about losing control and it’s been her life’s mission never to do it again, especially when it comes to small-town lawyer Tyler Blackwell. Ty takes one look at the woman he’s always loved and knows it’s way past time he seduced away the control she wears like a suit of armor. It will take a steady hand, a bit of dominance, and a little breath of magic from a Christmas Elf to win this sassy Texas woman.


Dec. 17: #2 Touch of Magic by Desiree Holt:

Maddie Woodward is in a pickle. The last person she expects to see when she returns to the family ranch for one last Christmas is her former lover, Zach Brennan. He’s hotter as he ever was, all male and determined to get her naked. She’s just as determined to show him she’s over him—until she ends up in his bed, enjoying the wildest sex of her life. A night of uncontrolled, erotic sex shows her that Zach is far from out of her life. Now if she can just get him to help her convince her sisters not to sell the ranch…

Dec. 19: #3 Whispers of Magic by Cindy Spencer Pape:

Hoping to get back in Santa’s good graces, Sparkle the elf takes on a difficult assignment—arrange a merry Christmas for photojournalist Jenna Woodward. Jenna has just lost her parents, her job, and her cheating “fiancé”. Rancher Mitch Sterling doesn’t want his face on a book, but he does want Jenna back in his life. He offers a deal—he’ll sign off, if she agrees to be at his mercy for one day. Jenna left him once because she was afraid of his Dominant lifestyle. Now, with help from a magical snowstorm, Mitch has twenty-four hours of tempestuous passion to convince her that she’ll love being his sub.

Dec. 24: #4: Elven Magic by Regina Carlysle, Desiree Holt, & Cindy Spencer Pape:
When three of Santa’s elves were ordered to provide happily ever afters for the Woodward sisters, they promised themselves a celebration if they were successful. Sharing a motel room during their assignment created a whole new level of sexual awareness among them, where boundaries were breaking down mentally day by day. With arousal at its peak after they all succeed, they decide to indulge in a sexual game of Truth or Dare, which will give a whole new slant to their friendship and allow them to explore their darkest fantasies—maybe even love.
Reader Advisory: Contains m/m/f sexual encounters.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

An early Christmas present for me!

I'm absolutely over the moon (pun intended) to announce that Curses, my witch/werewolf book, is a finalist for the 2009 EPPIE awards in the erotic paranormal category. This is the book that was left hanging when Triskelion went under, then found another home at The Wild Rose Press. I had two very excellent editors on this book, who really helped make it stronger, and am very thankful to both Carol Webb and Jade Alexander for all their hard work.


Curses
by Cindy Spencer Pape
available in print or ebook from The Wild Rose Press
ISBN: 1-60154-151-1
click on the cover for more information

Blurb:
Some people are really cursed when it comes to love! For innkeeper and witch Melissa MacRae, a family curse means that falling in love is the ultimate bad idea. Author Jonas Pierce is a werewolf, who has seen too much evil to even consider passing on his curse to another generation. So why does a hot summer fling have them both thinking about happily ever after?

Praise:
4 Stars from Romantic Times Magazine: “The characters are appealing, and passionate sex leads to a satisfying romance. Well-developed histories make the couple real and one readers will care about.”
Excerpt: ADULT!

He reached the mossy shoreline, where the memories hit him with the force of a two-ton truck. Unexpectedly, he sensed another presence, immediately becoming alert, poised for danger. Quiet, easy footsteps told him that the other person was as comfortable in the wilderness as he was, and Joe relaxed just a bit. Not too many people in the world could make that claim. Seconds later he caught a whiff of rosemary and lilacs, saw a flash of copper, and he knew.
“Hello, there.”
She froze for a second, then caught her breath and looked over at him, smiling. “Hello yourself. I was just on my way to see you.”
His eyes hungrily absorbed the sight of her as she moved slowly, inexorably toward him. The jeans she wore were ancient and faded; the soft cotton clung lovingly to her flared hips and narrow waist. A ragged gray sweatshirt with Lake State emblazoned across the front only hinted at the curves he knew lay beneath, and he longed to rip it off her. Preferably with his teeth.
“What a coincidence.” He took one long stride to meet her halfway. He reached out o clasp both of her hands in his, then leaned down to drop a soft kiss on the tip of her nose. “I was just on my way to visit you.”
Her musky, feminine scent surrounded him, her soft, liquid eyes looked up at him, and he simply couldn’t resist. Using their linked hands, he tugged her closer, then bent down for a kiss.
It was everything he remembered and more. Mel returned the kiss with passionate enthusiasm, and Joe lost track of both place and time. She tugged her hands free to wrap them around his neck, and his went around her waist without any conscious effort on Joe’s part. While her fingers tangled in his hair, his own explored up under the hem of her sweatshirt.
She wasn’t wearing a bra today either. “Oh, God.” He knew his moan had a hungry sound and he wanted, needed to fill his hands with her soft, warm flesh. Instantly, he forgot everything he had intended to tell her. The only thing in his universe was the beautiful, sensual woman he held in his arms.
When Jonas’s hands cupped her breasts, it took all Mel’s concentration just to stand. She couldn’t have spoken if her life depended on it. She knew she should call a halt to this; she’d been walking to his cabin to talk to him, to offer a much-deserved explanation about her desertion the night before. She hadn’t intended to make love with him.
Oh, yeah? So why didn’t you wear a bra then? She didn’t bother to justify her actions with a mental reply. She just gave up the fight, losing herself in Jonas’s embrace.
Tension coiled through her even before he unsnapped her jeans and slid his hand inside. When he touched her intimately, she cried out, and her knees buckled completely. Joe’s strong arm caught her as she fell, then he gently lowered them both to the soft, springy moss.

“I asked you last night, but now that it’s daytime, is anyone likely to walk by here?” He punctuated his question with little nibbling kisses along her throat.
“No.” She sighed at the beauty of the sensations he created, and, tilted her head to provide him better access. “Nobody.”
“Good.” The word came out as a fierce, guttural growl as he grabbed the hem of her sweatshirt with both hands and tugged it over her head. “Because I don’t want any interruptions this time. Please tell me you didn’t bring your pager.”
She nodded. Gladys would sleep today after their marathon session last night and so would Karen. Nobody else had the number so she’d left it on her kitchen table.
“I’ve wanted to do this for days.” His glowing golden eyes gazed at her, and Mel could feel her nipples pucker under his heated regard. He seemed to study every line and curve of her bare upper body. “Gorgeous.”
She flushed then, feeling the heat on her face and breasts. Jonas smiled, and busily stripped off his own clothing while Mel watched in rapt fascination. A pelt of curly black hair covered his leanly muscled, rock-hard chest. A narrower band of dark curls trailed down to where... Mel’s eyes bugged out. That was supposed to fit? Inside her?
Joe chuckled at her expression as he methodically peeled her own jeans and panties away. Then he lay down beside her and rested on one elbow. “It will work just fine.”
“Are you reading my mind?” She strained upward for his kiss. “Or am I that transparent?”
He kissed her lightly, then more deeply, and spoke in a whisper. “It’s those eyes. Aside from being gorgeous, they give away all your secrets.”
She sure hoped not! But she refused to worry about that right now. As he kissed her again, thoroughly this time, she gave herself completely in response, all mundane thoughts driven from her mind. Her hands tangled in the length of his thick glossy hair, holding him close as his lips left her mouth, trailing his kisses further south.
“Jonas!” She cried out as he sucked one pebbled nipple into his mouth. She writhed at the pleasure, clutching his head to her breast. She didn’t want him to stop what he was doing, but the ache growing in her lower body had her wishing he could be in two places at once.
And then he was. His big hand gently palmed her mound, and she rubbed against him, begging for his touch. Deft fingers slipped down. They parted her slick, swollen folds, before they finally, slowly, slid inside. Mel couldn’t help it. The pleasure was so intense, she shrieked.
“Like that, do you?” He switched his mouth to her other breast, while his magical fingers stroked and gently stretched her.
She couldn’t answer, lost in the ripples of pleasure that coursed through her body and coiled at her center. This was it! The passion she’d always dreamed of, but never really believed in. This was what started wars, toppled kingdoms, inspired fairy tales.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Welcome to December

I love December because it is such a holiday month. I'm still filled with turkey and pie and bountiful blessings from Thanksgivingblessinghs that include all of the wonderful friends I've made since I took my first baby steps into Yahoo. And now Christmas approaches, and with it the exceitment we never lost from when we were kids. The Secret Santas. The wonderful Christmas music, and the carols that everyone hums, even when vacuuming the house. It's how I get through ironing in december-singing Christmas carols, because believe me, I'd rather drink hemlock than iron. I love the smell of cookies baking and food simmering. The sticky sweet taste of candy canes, folowed by multiple trips to the dentist. The gifts we give and receive, with such joy and anticipation.
But this December I want to remind you of a few other things to think about. Not such pleasant things, but things we can't avoid, nevertheless. If a church or organization near you collects food and gifts for families, be sure to find something to controbute. In these tough economic times, more families than ever will need our help. Go to the library and volunteer for reading hour. For some of these children it's their only contact with the magical world of make believe. Help an elderly neighbor who lives alone and may have thought the spirit of Christmas was dead and buried, along with his family.
And send a Christmas card to a member of the Armed Forces. You don't have to agree with war or battle or any of those things. Just rememeber that these men and women are fighting for tjhe freedoms we take so blithely for granted. Christmas for them could be in a mess hall of they're lucky. Or hunkered down in the desert. Or hiding from huerillas in the Hindu Kush Mountains. Or spending their Christmas interdicting drug runners so your children and grandchildren will have less exposure to the poison sold on the strfeets.
But whatever you do, be cheerful, be thank ful, for we are all truly blessed. In our community of writers we are so fortunate to be able to say we are published, and to appreciate all the friends we've made because of it.
I am truly thankful for each and every one of youi so here's a big Christmas hug and huge wishes that for a wonderful holiday season.
Stop by and tell me what the holdays mean to you. I have a little Christmas story that my other alter ego, Emily Brevard, wrote, and I'll pick a name from the comments to send a free download.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Being Thankful for Movies,Couches, and Pillows

Today, while my family cooks everything from the turkey to the desert, I'm making catching up on some movies I should have already seem. Against All Odds (1984, Rachel Ward, Jeff Bridges) is first on my list.
I'm watching the end of it as I write this; I can't decide if I like this movie or not.

As an erotic romance writer, it has one flaw that is a deal breaker for me--people falling in love just because. Usually the just because is just because she's so beautiful or just because he's so handsome. Grr...that's so lame.

That said, this movie does have some scenes that almost make up for the annoyance of what to me is lazy writing that could have been resolved with an additional scene or two. And it has a tropical setting, which I absolutely love.

If you havn't seen it, sure, you should check it out--of the library--for free. I say free because that way if you too get annoyed by the Just Because factor you won't be annoyed that you paid to be annoyed.

Trying to remember if you've seen it already? Check out the trailer.

Next up is The Day of the Jackal (1973, Edward Fox). No sexy tropical beach settings and bare chest football players in this one. Just a crafty plot to kill the French president.

Check out trailer for that one.

I just put Day o the J in, and I can tell already I better pay attention--because if I don't, I'm going to be lost in about seven minutes. Fingers crossed that nothing will happen just because.

Wishing you and yours a peaceful and happy Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

MySpace ... Finally

I finally, finally made it to MySpace. It's a bit lonely there right now.
The page is a work in progress, but I'm hoping a couple people will stop by, say hi, and friend me.
Pretty please?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

And the winner is..

Anita Birt, who gets a signed copy of ON THE RUN. Anita, email me at storyscribe@ctesc.net with your snail mail addy.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Time to help others

SOMETHING WE ALL SHOULD KNOW
Domestic violence should not happen to anybody. Ever. Period. But it does - and when it does, there is help. Maybe you have lived with abuse, maybe it happened just once; maybe you work or live next to someone who is being abused right now. In a 1995-1996 study conducted in the 50 States and the District of Columbia, nearly 25% of women and 7.6% of men were raped and/or physically assaulted by a current or former spouse, cohabiting partner, or dating partner/acquaintance at some time in their lifetime (based on survey of 16,000 participants, equally male and female). Approximately 1.3 million women and 835,000 men are physically assaulted by an intimate partner annually in the United States. In 2000, 1,247 women and 440 men were killed by an intimate partner. In recent years, an intimate partner killed approximately 33% of female murder victims and 4% of male murder victims. And so to all of these victims, many of whose story will never be told, I dedicate this book.

A SPECIAL PROJECT
To celebrate its second anniversary The Wild Rose Press and Editor-in-chief Rhonda Penders wanted a project that would give something back to the community. What could be better for a publisher than a book, and I was honored to be asked to write it. The result is ON THE RUN, a romantic suspense that focuses on domestic violence. The first check from sales of the book will go to the Victim’s Advocacy Office of the San Antonio Police Department, chosen because the most of the story takes place in San Antonio. You can help contribute to this fund by purchasing a copy of this book and passing the word along.
ON THE RUN
When Robin Fletcher saw her sister brutally murdered by her wealthy, abusive husband, she grabbed her five-year-old nephew and ran. Months late, living in Memphis with new names and a new life, their sense of security is shattered. First Andy is diagnosed with aplastic anemia. Then fate sends them directly into the path of the killer. Can Andy’s doctor who’s captured her heart protect her or will she again have to go ON THE RUN?
(Print available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million and Alibris)
(ebook available at http://www.thewildrosepress.com/)

Excerpt:
Taking the highway into Oregon might have been easier on her, but she was sure that was the first route C.D. would check. Instead, she cut east immediately into Idaho. Besides, evading C.D., she had a specific reason for coming this way. Tomorrow they’d get to Helena, where she had important business to take care of. Things that would help keep her and Bobby safe. Robin had only a vague idea of how long they’d been driving but it felt as if she’d been doing it forever. Her eyes were gritty from lack of sleep and her muscles rigid with tension. It didn’t help that she was constantly watching for some ca to run her off the road or but her off. She’d been lucky enough to find a couple of drive-through’s where she fueled up with coffee. Caffeine raced through her system like a wild horse, revving her up and making her edgy. She slid a glance at Bobby, wrapped in a blanket and buckled into his car seat. What a lucky thing he was sleeping so heavily. Still, she knew they needed to find a bed pretty soon. And food. Starvation wouldn’t be a pretty way to die. By the time they reached Kellogg, Idaho, she was more than ready to stop. She pulled gratefully into a motel whose sign blinked ‘Vacancy’ in big red letters. It was the most welcoming site Robin had seen in a long time. Nervously she left Bobby in the car while she registered, keeping one eye on the parking lot, terrified that any moment she’d hear the screeching of brakes and C.D. would leap out of his car. At last they were in their room at the back of the motel, well hidden from the street. She toted in her duffel bag and laptop, then tucked the little boy into bed. After that she treated herself to a shower. Tired as she was, she still needed to wash away the strain of driving nearly three hundred miles at night. All she wanted was to wash the fatigue from her muscles before she climbed into bed. But as the hot spray beat down on her physically and emotionally exhausted body, her control disintegrated and tears began to cascade down her cheeks. She was thankful that the drumming of the water against the tiles drowned out the huge gulping sobs that wracked her body, so Bobby couldn’t hear. She cried as she had never cried before in her life, tears of despair and grief. And self-condemnation, that she hadn’t been able to do anything to save her sister. She didn’t think that particular guilt would ever leave her. Jamie! Oh, Jamie! How did I let this happen to you? The water ran cold before the last shudder died from her body. She drew in a long breath and blew it out slowly. Her heart ached unbearably, but she had a responsibility now. A mission, and she would not fail, no matter what. Keep Bobby safe and away from C.D. Create a whole new life for the two of them. This would be her tribute to her sister.
Come visit me at http://www.judithrochelle.com/ or http://www.desireeholt.com/
Or www.myspace.com/judithdesiree

Friday, November 14, 2008

Historical research

It's Friday again! 4:10 pm. Where did the week go?

Searching for historical information is like diving into a great pool of fascinating facts where drowning in words is possible. In my book, A Very Difficult Man, I had to research several areas. Specifically the Crimean War. The cholera outbreak in London, England, 1854/55. The bride ships that brought young women from England to Victoria where men eagerly awaited to marry them. The powers-that-be wanted the women to civilize the men.

I wrote about Dr. John Snow in my personal blog, www.anitabirtstoryteller.blogspot.com He insisted that cholera was spread through contaminated water. His is a fascinating story. I haven't written about the bride ships yet. That's for another time.

Another of my historical romances, Isabelle's Story, A Cerridwen Press publication is set in the late nineteenth century. Because it takes place in an around Llandrindod Wells, it was easy to find the information I required. My husband and I visited that lovely old spa town several years ago and that's where I had the "ah ha" moment that started the story winding its way into my heart and eventually into a published story.

I have to run along. See you next time.

Anita
www.anitabirt.com

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What He Really Means

I was talking to a guy friend of mine about how to make sure my male characters sound like real men, and our conversation turned into a discussion on coded speech—the stuff guys says to girls when they want to say something nice but don’t want to come across as a rude jerk who’s only interested in her body.

Here’s what he told me.

If a guy says:

that’s a pretty sweater

He means:

you have pretty breasts

If he says:

those are awesome boots/shoes

He means:

you have awesome legs

If he says:

those are great jeans

He means:

you have a great ass

Ok. That’s not the whole list. There were others including potential compliments including her jacket, blouse, skirt, turtleneck, tank top, khakis, gloves, hat, scarf—and others I’ve already forgotten.

I do remember though, when I asked him if there were any coded compliments about other things—other things being anything other than the woman’s body—and him drawing a complete blank. I prompted him with, you know, like maybe if they want to say something about her personality.

Again another blank.

Hmmm. I guess that coded speech does serve its purpose.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Winner of Down and Dirty

Congrats to Deirdre Durance who was picked out of my husband Stetson by one of my kittens as the winner of Down and Dirty. Thanks to everyone for all your great comments.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Do you want to get Down and Dirty?

My latest release from Total-e-bound, DOWN AND DIRTY, is out today. Check it out. (and gawd, do I love those Texas hunks.)



New to Texas, Krista North reluctantly let her friend drag her to hot, wealthy cowboy Clint Brody’s famous annual barbecue. When he found her in his family room trying to clean off a spilled drink, he convinced her taking a shower would be a better idea. With him. Krista thought it the most erotic shower she’d ever taken until Clint’s friend Shane made an appearance. Then things really got interesting.


EXCERPT:

Setting her hat on the bar, she slid behind it and turned on both faucets. Wetting her hands, she splashed water everywhere the drink had landed.
“I’ve got what people tell me is the biggest shower in the world. It would probably do a better job than that.”
The voice was rich as sin and warm as melted chocolate. Krista’s head snapped up, and she nearly melted into a puddle at what she saw. Six foot five of the most mouth-watering male she’d ever seen. Thick, curly black hair crowned a face that the word ‘rugged’ was made for. Lashes equally as dark shaded eyes of smoky silver. A thin cotton plaid shirt and soft jeans barely concealed the hard musculature of his body. Crisp dark hair peeked out where the shirt was open at the neck, and the rolled-up sleeves revealed arms with well defined muscles that didn’t come from any gym. As her eyes automatically swept over his body, they strayed to his crotch where an impressive bulge pushed against his fly.
“Would you like a closer look?” There was amusement in his tone.
Krista felt heat rise in her face. Was it possible for the floor to open and swallow her?

“Sorry. I’m just…” She wildly looked around for paper towels or a cloth or something to wipe herself with. Remembering the bandana, she pulled it out and began blotting herself.
“Here. Let me.”
He was so close to her now that she felt as if he surrounded her. The heat of him, the male scent, clogged her senses. A smart woman would probably move or push him away. Actually run from the room. Except her feet seemed glued to the floor. Here he was, right in front of her, the type man who starred in all her darkest fantasies. She wondered if he noticed her suddenly hardened nipples poking against the thin fabric of her top or the way she squeezed her legs together to still the throbbing that beat in her pussy like a jungle drum on adrenaline.
He took the bandana from her unresisting hand then gently wiped the places she’d splashed water on herself.

Check out this and other great books at http://www.total-e-bound.com/
Come visit me at http://www.desireeeholt.com/
www.myspace/com/judithdesiree

Friday, November 7, 2008

Writing a love story






It's Friday again and I almost forgot to write a piece for the Goddesses. Well, here I am bowed but not broken. WRITING A LOVE STORY. Or a play. Or an opera. We have a man and a woman who meet for the first time. What happens next is the key to the story. In very short terms, the essence is, "He wants." "She wants." And never the twain shall meet until the end of the book. Their wants conflict.

This bit of wisdom which you all know was plain to see in the opera I attended recently Thaiis. The monk (protagonist) visited an old friend in Alexandria and was horrified at the sinful behaviour of some of the inhabitants, especially a courtesan, Thaiis. He returns to his monastery and is given leave to return to the sinful city and persuade Thaiis to give up your way of life to live a Godly existence, preferably in a small cell in a convent. He eventually persuaded her to see the wickedness of her ways and escorted her to a convent. Their conflict energized the opera. The music was wonderful, especially The Meditation, played by a solo violinist and harpist.

However!!! When he got what he wanted, saved Thaiis, he realized he loved her and journeyed to the convent to rescue her. It was too late. She had found God and died. He was broken hearted and began to question his faith. He wants. She wants. Our books never ended tragically.

And so to my work in progress. "Marrying The Boss. He has to marry before his very ill father dies in order to save the family business from falling into the hands of his gambling addicted uncle. He wants a temporary wife But the woman he picks doesn't want to marry him, short or long term. She wants to stay single.

He wants. She wants. It plays over and over in fiction. And to end this little effort I am posting the covers of all five of my books. I like to see them all in one place now and again.

Thanks for stopping by,
Anita
www.anitabirt.com

Monday, November 3, 2008

Two hot new releases!!!

This is a big week for me and my alter ego, Desiree Holt. We're both very excited because we both have new releases. Desiree's first single author anthology, HOT WICKED AND WILD is just out from Elloras's Cave. Ya gotta read about the erotic adventures of Tracie and Pete.
BLURB:
It’s after hours and Tracie Hill has been having a bad day. Her boss had sold the investment company to a much larger corporation, a new boss with a reputation as a tyrant was arriving the next morning, and she tore her last pair of panty hose. As she’s stripping them off to toss in the trash, standing half naked in her office, she hears a deep voice making a comment and sees the most gorgeous man ever to cross her eyesight standing in her doorway. Then the power went out, locking them inside. It was a wild beginning for Tracie and sexy Pete Montgomery, but as they loved in together and he introduced her to the erotic delights of a BDSM relationship and the excitement of an occasional ménage, she learned what she’d been missing all these years. It wasn’t however, until she accompanied Pete to a secluded island in the Caribbean, to s house party where the theme was “anything goes” that she learned just how uninhibited she could be. And whether Pete would finally claim her as his forever, or move on to someone else.

Book Three: Scent of Danger in Judith's Phoenix Agency series is out tomorrow, November 3, from The Lotus Circle.
BLURB:
Kelly Monroe was shocked when her dog, Xena, a Caucasian Ovcharka seemed to bond at once with Rick Latrobe, a partner in the high profile Phoenix Agency. Ovcharkas are known for linking with only their owners. But Xena is picking up Rick’s wave length, very much aware when an attempt is made on Rick’s life, and driving Kelly crazy with signals of danger regarding Rick’s current project, ferrying a shipment of arms to a private security cadre in Iraq. Rick is nearly killed when the shipment is stolen by terrorists who are hot in his trail. Only Kelly and Xena, coached by members of The Lotus Circle to expand the psychic link between the three of them—can keep him safe. As Rick scrambles to learn who’s behind the whole mess, the relationship he and Kelly have deepens. But Xena is the real star, not only signaling when danger is at hand but “sniffing” out the killers.
http://www.thelotuscircle.com/

And Book Two: Visions of Darkness, is just out in print. Look for it now at http://www.thelotuscircle.com/ and soon at Amazon, Barfnes&Noble, Borders and other online book stores.
BLURB:
Dan Romeo CEO of the mysterious Phoenix Agency, has just completed a dangerous mission and wants some down time. But when his friend Chase Carpenters calls with an emergency, how can he refuse him? Someone is threatening to steal Chase’s brand new high tech robot about to be unveiled and all he’s got is an anonymous tip. Art historian Mia Fleming has battled with her precognitive abilities all her life, often shunned by a skeptical public and even more skeptical police. But the visions relating to the robot are so vivid she can’t ignore them. When Dan tracks her down as the source of the anonymous note, he wonders if she’s the culprit or a conduit for a message? Things get complicated when the electricity between Dan and Mia ratchets up into high voltage and they find it’s not something they can ignore. Then bodies begin falling, Mia’s vision escalate in horror and intensity and the tension at Carpenter Techtronics is off the charts. When Mia is shot and almost killed, Dan and his team race to locate the real robot and find the killers before they can strike again.



Thursday, October 30, 2008

Cheap Halloween Thrills


Restless and unsatisfied with her life, Lacey is looking for answers. But the recurring dream that haunts her sleep delivers only more questions. When the fierce brigand of her nights seeks her out, Lacey’s tormenting dreams become reality and her past becomes her present.



Excerpt:
Three steps onto the garden path, a metallic blink caught her eye.

A gold coin?

The surface was smooth, the ancient imprint barely visible, but the weight was solid and genuine. Four steps later, she spotted another, leading her left at a split in the path. By the time she had five coins, she was well into the garden.

“I can accompany you on your way out.”

Pivoting on her toes, Lacey came nose to nose with Mr. Vaughn.

The coins clinked in her palm. Business first, she reminded herself.

Taking leisurely steps back, she replied, “I’m not headed anywhere in particular...just enjoying the night.”

Matching her step for step, he said, “I can think of better ways to accomplish that.”

Lacey was forced to stop when freshly trimmed hedge branches scraped the back of her arms. Calling up the earlier blush, she lowered her voice to a shaky whisper. “Don’t you think we should settle business matters first?” She ran her fingertip along the edge of his black dinner jacket, feigning deep interest. “Then we can see to other matters.”

He shook his head and took her ribcage in his square hands, pulling her toward him. When he spoke there was no threat in his tone, only the confidence that millions buys. “I don’t like to wait.”

A natural smile curved across Lacey’s mouth, and she laughed. “There’s something we can agree on.”

“Excellent. That makes three of us.”

Even before she looked, she knew who’d approached.

“If you’ll excuse us, sir” he said, staring at Mr. Vaughn, “I’ve come to collect something from the lady.”

“Perhaps you could speak with her later?” He didn’t let go of her, but spoke over his shoulder. “As you can see, we’re...involved.”

The man’s gaze dropped to Lacey’s fistful of coins and then came up to connect with hers. “There’s not time to wait,” he said.

When he sensed Mr. Vaughn’s implied refusal, he strode forward and swept him aside. Without pausing, he grabbed Lacey’s arm and dragged her along.

Scrambling to right herself and tug her arm free at the same time, she trotted beside him, stumbling when he ducked around a corner. He stopped short, and she slammed into his chest.

His muscles flexed beneath the suit jacket, causing the sleeves to bunch up as he gripped her arms. Locks of black hair fell into his eyes, but he ignored them. His gaze raked across her face and his breath came in sharp puffs.

For a mad instant Lacey was sure he was going to kiss her, but it was the rush of disappointment when he didn’t that surprised her.

Struggling to get some control over the situation, she raised her fist. “If you wanted the coins, all you had to do was ask.”

She uncurled her fingers, revealing only the soft skin of her palm. “The coins...”

He took her empty hand, turned it over to kiss her knuckles. “Were only there to lead you to me.”

Monday, October 27, 2008

Halloweens Coming

Halloween is coming, with its spooks and goblins and ghosts and things that go bump in the night. I think we all have special paranormal beings that fascinate us. For me its wolves and shapeshifters.
Shape shifting is the transformation (mentally or physically) of one's self into an animal. A 'theriomorph' is a shapeshifter; a being who can assume an animal as well as a human form.
Shapeshifting is a common theme in mythology and folk lore, as well as in science fiction and fantsy. In its broadest sense, it is a change in the physical form or shape of a person or animal. In modern fantasy, more than in folklore, the extent to which the change affects the mind can be important. The werewolf can observe, for example, observe that taking on wolf-form can simplify his thoughts.
There are two types of shapeshifting; changing your light body in the astral to power animal, and changing your physical form on the earth plane into an animal. Perhaps this is where the lycanthropy legend actually began. Very adept shamans are said to be able to change their physical human forms into that of animals.
Many early civilizations revered animals as the incarnation of gods; in ancient Egypt, for example, both the cobra and the cat were objects of worship. It is not surprising that stories of humans turning into beasts, has become deeply ingrained in the popular imagination. Often such metamorphoses are associated with fear and terror.
In central and eastern Europe, for example, a belief in the bloodsucking vampire that condemns its victims to a living death has persisted into the 20th century.
In West Africa until recently, members of a secret society called the Leopard Men believed that simply wearing the leopard's distinctive spotted skin would magically imbue them with that animal's fearsome strength.
Wolves are my greatest love, so the shifter stories I write are about people who shift into wolven form. Many authors today use shape shifting as a plot device, and I think it adds a mystical, magical element to the story.
So what’s your favorite-or secret-paranormal being? Leave me a comment, and you might win a copy of my shifter story, Line of Sight.

Here’s what Sensual Ecataromance had to say about Line of Sight:
Desiree Holt’s Line of Sight is a must read novel with a lot to offer. There is passion and intensity plus hot and steamy sex. From beginning to end, the fire that flares between them is combustible. As a reader I can not wait for the next novel from this gifted author. Line of Sight has only whetted my appetite for this brilliant writer.
BLURB:
Shapeshifter Alexa Morgan fled her home in the north when her relationship with a human ended in disaster and the clan alpha shunned her. Now living in Florida, against all her better judgment she finds herself in a hot relationship with Jesse Farrell, the cop next door. Despite her knowledge that the relationship is doomed, she cannot stay away from him. When Jesse, a gang task force member, is hurt one night on the job, Alexa begins to spend her nights tracking him, keeping him in her line of sight, determined to protect him. But she’s terrified of his reaction when he discovers her true nature. Will he accept her or bolt as her other lover did, leaving her destroyed once more?

Friday, October 24, 2008

A topic, a topic, my kingdom for a topic

A topic, a topic, etc. with apologies to Richard III who wanted a horse but in the modern version he wanted a vehicle and got a Jeep. It was a fabulous film. I also like the play. As with all Shakespeare's plays, there are memorable lines. "This is the winter of my discontent ..."

It is 2:39 out here on the Pacific Northwest coast. The weather has suddenly changes\d from balmy to very chilly. The ghosties and goblins will come knocking at our door on October 31, one week from to-day. I love seeing the little kids with their eyes wide and not sure what is going on but it looks good. I will carve my pumpkin on the week-end and light it with a long lasting candle. I hope the weather is okay.

And back to news of the day. My book, Isabelle's Diary, will be featured in the January RT ad sponsored by All Romance E-Books along with eleven other book covers. Then out of the blue, their marketing manager informed me that my book had been drawn in a random drawing for a review in RT. I was absolutely thrilled. Here's the cover of Isabelle's Diary and the cover of A Very Difficult Man which is scheduled for release in print next month. I love those covers. Now I must leave the goddesses and go to my personal blog. It's about dreams again!

Anita
www.anitabirt.com

Monday, October 20, 2008

Orgy or Menage?

Recently on one of my loops there was a discussion about what makes a menage and what makes an orgy. Is it just the number of people? Is it the relationship? Is it both? I decided to check out the difference myself, and I want to thank all the peole—who shall definitely be namesless—who contributed to my information, if not, necessarily my experience! So here we go.
An orgy in ancient times was a secet, nighttime ritual in an ancient Greek religion, connected wuith Dionysus and Baccanalia. There are two sorts of orgies, the kind where couples gather to couple with other couples, and free-for-alls. Either kind works, depending on who’s involved and particular sexual preferences. The only rule is it must include both sexes. So, if you plan to have an orgy, guest list is key.
An orgy is like any party, except with ample fresh towels, lubricants, and nowadays bowls of condoms every six square feet. The liquor should flow freely, the food should not be especially gas-producing (save the Three Bean Salad for the church picnic), and the music should be cosmopolitan, exotic, and daring. Set a mood with music and lighting, something that encourages people to shed their everyday skins.
Expect on at least one awkward scene at your orgy-the wife/husband who got talked into it and then changed his/her mind. The man/woman who dies sin from the platform of excitement, then can’t control his/her embarrassment. Set aside space for these people to recover, opportunities for them to leave gracefully, whatever will work to keep the orgy flowing.
But the basic thing to remember is that in an orgy, which can be any number from three on up, the people are not emotionally involved. The exception is people who participate as couples and are involved with each other but not anyone else. The sex is purely physical and people are not there looking for wedding veils. They want off-the-wall sex with multiple partners, usually at the same time.
Ménage à trois is the French term describing a relationship or domestic arrangement in which three people share a sexual relationship. It literally translates as "household of three." Simply put, it’s a romantic relationship in which three people, maybe a married couple and a lover, live together and have sexual relations always involving all three of them. This can expand to include four or even five people. But there’s one big difference between a menage a any number and an orgy-ROMANCE!
There is an emotional link between the members of the menage on which the relationshipmis founded. This link is not necessary for an orgy, nor does it exist.
So what do you tbhink—orgy or menage? What floats your boat? Which one do you like to read about?
Whichever one you choose, be sure and pick up my Ellora's Cave Exotika anthology, HOT, WICKED AND WILD, on October 31. It’s got both!
And be sure to visit me at http://www.desireeholt.com/ and www.myspace.com/judith/desiree

Tracie Hill began the erotic adventure of her life when her new boss, Pete Montgomery, caught her stripping in her office. But the ride didn’t reach its satisfying conclusion until he took her to a house party in the Caribbean where there were “no boundaries.”
EXCERPT:
She looked at him helplessly.
Then he burst out laughing.
“I’m glad you think this is so funny,” she spat at him.
“It’s priceless, is what it is.” He took off his blue blazer and dropped it and his tie on an armchair. “Do you know how many men would love to be marooned like this with a gorgeous female?”
Gorgeous? He thought she was gorgeous?
“I beg your pardon?”
“You heard me.” He moved closer to her.
She backed up until the desk hit her ass. “W-What do you have in mind?”
He flashed his wicked grin at her. “Well, let’s see. It appears we’re liable to be here for a while so we need to do something to pass the time.”
“Pass the time?” She sounded like a parrot.
“Mm-hmm. I’m not much of a card player. Chess, maybe but only an idiot would waste time alone with a beautiful woman playing chess.” He rubbed his jaw. “There’s always word games.”
She stared at him as if he’d lost his mind. “You want to play word games?”
“Nope. I want to do this.” He was right up against her, his obviously swollen cock pressing into her belly, his face not more than an inch from hers. Then his arms came around her, pulling her tight against him and his mouth came down on hers.
Too shocked to even move, she opened her mouth to protest and his tongue swept in like a marauding bandit, tasting, touching stroking the lining of her mouth. His hands slid down to her ass, gripping it and pulling her closer. She couldn’t believe her own hands actually crept around his neck and her fingers threaded through his hair. This was a kiss beyond belief. He tasted of mint and fresh air and smelled of something delightfully spicy.
I’m kissing a man and I don’t even know who he is. My god! Well, wasn’t this her fantasy? Hadn’t she dreamed of this after the last fiasco with Rex? Meeting a gorgeous, sexy man, totally unknown and having wild, uncontrollable sex with him?
She pulled her head away a fraction. He hadn’t given her much room to maneuver.
“I don’t even know your name,” she gasped.
He flashed his magic grin. “Pete. Just call me Pete.”
“Tracie.” She was surprised she could even get out the word.
“What?” He stared at her with those hot emerald eyes, his face co close she could count his eyelashes. “What did you say?”
“Tracie,” she gasped. “My name is Tracie.”
“Oh. Well. Hi, Tracie, nice to meet you.”
Then his mouth came down on hers again, his tongue invading the inside of her mouth like a candle lighting the sensitive tissues and she felt herself melting again. What was left of her brain kicked in and she found the strength to pull back from him. She tried to push him away but he held her too close for any movement. His hands moved up and down her back, creating friction under the cloth of her dress.
“We can’t do this.” Her breath fell in uneven pants as she pushed at his chest again.
“I don’t know why not. Here we are, trapped in these offices, no idea when we’ll get out of this place. I’ve had a hard-on since the minute I laid eyes on you. And if the way you returned that kiss is any indication, you don’t exactly find me unappealing.”
“B-But we don’t even know each other.”
“Sure we do,” he grinned. “We just introduced ourselves. And we’re about to get to know each other a whole lot better. Right?”
While they were talking, he slid one hand down over her hip and ever so lightly eased up her skirt until his palm touched bare flesh.
Tracie jerked. What the hell does he think he’s doing?
“Touching that ass that looked so appealing when you were doing your mini-strip tease before.” He grinned at her.
She hadn’t realized she’d spoken aloud and her face flooded with embarrassment. But she couldn’t make herself move away from him. His hand was like a burning coal on her ass, leaving traces of fire wherever he touched. Her mind shrieked Stop! but her body said, Don’t stop, you damn fool.
Pete dropped his mouth to her shoulders and began biting gently at the place where her neck and shoulder met. She felt liquid begin to seep from her body and wished she had panties on to absorb the moisture. This was nuts! She was creaming over a man she’d known for five minutes and letting him feel her bare ass.
And loving it! His presence somehow surrounded her and his male essence drugged her, put her off guard. All she had to do was look at him and she was wet, soaking, dripping.
“I… We… That is…” She couldn’t figure out what to say. He made her mind foggy with just the lightest of touches.
“Look at it this way.” He was still nipping her shoulder, sending feathers of sensation skittering along her spine. “Haven’t you ever wondered what it would be like to have hot, sweaty sex with a stranger? Someone you didn’t even know but who made you hotter than a burning log? Someone you could do anything with because you didn’t think you’d ever have to face them again?”





Friday, October 17, 2008

Interview and other bits and pieces of this and that

Friday, and my turn to blog with the Goddesses. I have just been interviewed and photographed by three women studying communications at Royal Roads University here in Victoria. They are interviewing women and men, age fifty and over, to determine their living style, shopping patterns, etc. Fran Embry, one of the women, is a friend, that's how I was chosen.

I'm taking a class given by E.CSheedy. It's called Romancing the Villain. I am reminded again how important it is to take some time and review the various books on writing I have. I'll note some of them on my next blog. Self-editing for Writers. Scene and Structure. The Writer's Journey. I am downstairs and my library is not within easy reach. So Goddesses - what books on writing do you have? How often do you study them?
I blogged on my own blog, http://www.anitabirtstoryteller.blogspot.com/ about breaking a dream. An idea I had never heard of until I lived in Wales. I did break a dream and am waiting the good luck that is supposed to follow. Will the print copy of A Very Difficult Man appear as scheduled October/November? I sure hope so. I have plans for a launch at The Fairmont Empress Hotel with a cocktail party.
Time for a cup of tea and a think about why I am stuck in the middle of a historical romance I'm writing. Those books on writing will help. So back to work.
Anita



Monday, October 13, 2008

Why I bang my head on my computer desk


It happens to all of us, sooner rather than later and much more often than any of us would like. The computer—our lifeline, our connection to the world, the instrument of our creation—bites the big one. It happened to me last Monday morning.
I’m sitting at my desk with my mug of tea, minding my own business, with three documents and a few others things open and minimized on my computer, I download my email, but then, before reading it, I decide to check something in my bank account. But the…darned…page…won’t…open. Aargh!!!
I then say to myself, Self, close everything, reboot and try again. So I dutifully try to close everything that’s open. Nothing…will…close. Nothing! Not one program. Aargh!!!
So, taking a deep breath, I punch the button to manually shut off the computer. That works out just fine. But when I punch the same button to turn it on again, it gets just so far. Then it gives me the message that haunts all of our nightmares: Windows cannot load because it is missing a file. Reboot from the CD.
Okay, okay, okay. I can do that. I slip the CD into the drive and up comes six different messages. One of them is Do you want to repair the problem?
Well, of course I do, you stupid computer. Why do you think I’m sitting here pulling my hair out? Sooo, I select that option and the computer cycles through the instructions, reboots…and asks me the same stupid question!!!!!!! So once again I go through the process. And again. And again. And again!!!
By now I can tell you tea is not strong enough but I can’t bring myself to pour Jack Daniel’s at seven thirty in the morning.
My last chance to win-reinstall Windows XP from the CD. Of course…ha ha ha…we all know THAT WILL WIPE OUT EVERYTHING ON THE HARD DRIVE!!!!! But, smart me, I have an external hard drive that backs everything up on my computer every single night. No problem.
Sooo, here we go, reinstalling Windows XP. Voila! We are now in business!
Not!
Because I can no longer access the PC Backup files TO RETRIEVE MY THREE WIPS!! Well, &*(*&*(*&
NOW I’m banging my head on my desk.
By an accident of luck (not braisn, I can assure you) I had two of them saved to my flash drive. Actually, all three but, of course (bangs head) one of the files is corrupted and only gives me four pages out for almost forty.
Banging head again.
Next step: calling son-in-law sobbing madly and throwing self on mercy.
By Tuesday I really was back in business, sort of. Everything was up and running except…I still can’t access the backup files, so I am buying new software. And I am manually backing up to the external hard drive every document I work on, as well as to two flash drives. And I spent the week pounding away at my computer doing my best to recreate my lost manuscript. (Much, much, much banging of head.)
By Tuesday night I was ready to drink the Jack Daniel’s straight from the bottle, but by Sunday night when I finally sent off my finished manuscript to my editor I decided one drink should be limit. Next time I’ll give the rest to my computer.
Sooo. What horror stories do y’all have? Tell me about them. I just know everyone’s computer has been bad at least once.
And while you’re here, let me tell you about my latest release from Ellora’s Cave, ONCE BURNED.

One hot summer Cassie Fitzgerald gave her virginity and her heart to Griffin Hunter. When he married her sister, Diane, she fled Stoneham and for six years nothing could make her return. Not her sister’s murder, for which Griffin was and continues to be the only suspect. Not her father’s suicide, which the police chief wants to sweep under the rug. But now her mother is dead and she has legal obligations she can’t avoid. Nor, it seems, can she avoid Griffin, who wants her more than ever and makes no bones about it and to whom she finds herself just as susceptible. Will Cassie be able to control her own hot need for this man or will she be pulled back into the same sensual vortex? Can she uncovers the secret Stoneham’s hiding, the riddle of Diane’s murder and the answer to her relationship with Griff without destroying herself in the process?

EXCERPT
Her breath was frozen in her chest. Swallowing hard, she made her feet move, one in front of the other, doing her best to ignore him, her eyes still drawn to him. This was a different Griff from the daredevil who lived in her darkest dreams. He was not only older but harder, less yielding. His hair was still sun bleached and too long, his body fuller but still tanned and muscular. Aviator sunglasses hid the remembered blue of his eyes but his mouth that had pressed such passionate kisses on every part of her body was set in an expression of bitterness. There was something almost lethal about him now. If she hadn’t known him so well, she might have been afraid of him.
And something else defined his posture. Anger? Sadness? She didn’t want to know. She especially didn’t want to feel the quickening of her heartbeat, the tightening of her breasts, the instant hardening of her nipples and the primal beat that began throbbing between her legs. The heat had burned her once—scorched her—and she wasn’t about to play with fire again.
But her brain apparently had taken a vacation, along with her ability to make a sensible decision and stick to it. All these years, all that pain and it took only seconds for her body to leap to life in the once familiar response.
She detoured to the trunk of the rental car, her keys in her hand that trembled despite her best efforts.
Griff reached out one arm and pressed down against the lid of the trunk so she couldn’t open it. “I heard you were in town. I came to see for myself.”
“Please let me open my trunk.” She tried to make her voice as flat as his.
“We have things to talk about, Cassie.”
“You’re wrong. We have nothing to say to each other.”
“Oh but we do.” He moved until he was standing right next to her, crowding her space. “We have a lot to say. We have unfinished business between us.”

Friday, October 10, 2008

Food for the soul

Not "soul food." I'm thinking of a meal that you remember vividly because of where you were and how it tasted. I remember two in particular. On our first visit to Glastonbuy the magnificent ruins were wide open to the public to wander through. But when the so-called New Age folks moved in with their tents and caravans the powers-that-be decided to protect the ruins by surrounding it with fencing and charging a fee to get in. Very sensible. Glastonbuy is a very special place with a special feel to it.

On our first visit the weather was cold and rainy with lowering gray clouds. My rain resistant clothing didn't keep the damp out. Bill was chilled as well. We wandered up the main street and found a Tea Shop, its windows steamed up. We went in to the blessed warmth and found a table. We had tea and raisin stuffed warm bread pudding served with cream. I will forever remember the taste of the bread pudding never to be replicated. I close my eyes and step into the shop and breathe in the life giving scent of bread pudding washing it down with cups of tea.

Next memory. I was on a hiking trip with the Skyline Hikers of the Canadian Rockies. We were hiking high, not mountain climbing, nothing that difficult. We were below the tree line. A drift of rain showers spattered through the trees. As it was time to eat our lunch we scattered to find dry spots. I chose to sit under a rock overhang on the side of the mountain out of the rain. I got my thermos of hot coffee and sandwiches from my backpack. Peacefully eating, I gazed into the trees and their dripping leaves. My clothes were warm. I was cozy. It was like being in another world. Almost an out of body experience.

I turn back the clock to relive those special moments when life handed me the bliss of savoring food to feed my soul.

Thanks for dropping by.

Anita
www.anitabirt.com

Friday, October 3, 2008

LOST (and a story idea)

This should not happen to a Goddess nor to a very ordinary woman (me). I had an appointment to have an eye exam downtown and parked in a parking garage in which I have never parked before. It was connected to the main library. Easy. Ha! It is one of those underground places. Very confusing. I parked my car and couldn't see an elevator so walked up three flights of stairs. That is were I made my mistake. The stairs cannot be accessed from the street. Doors open from the inside not the outside.

Of course, at the end of my eye exam I had to take the elevator down to the parkade. No familiar staircase. I could not find my car. I walked and walked and walked for over 30 minutes until by the grace of God I found my vehicle. By that time I was in tears. Trapped in a parking garage. My cell phone was in the car.

I decided to go straight home and have a good cry on Bill's shoulders. Then I thought, if I don't buy the week-end groceries I will have to do it on Saturday and I didn't want to do that. So, bravely I grocery shopped and came home teary eyed.

This has absolutely nothing to do with writing - or is it? Can I create a story around a woman lost in a parking garage who pushes open a door, steps through and almost falls into a pit filled with writhing hissing snakes. She has to creep around the edges of the pit to the far side where there's another door. She touches the handle. It's warm. She has to open it or fall into the snake pit. Behind the door is ...

Goddessess take a few minutes and add a line or two to my story. Pass it on to another Goddess and let's see what happens. Hells bells, I have to get something out of my LOST experience.

I'm putting up the covers of my two Isabelle books to encourage eager buyers to lay down their credit cards and make me happy with a few sales.

Thanks for listening to my tale of woe.
Anita


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Nectar of the Gods, Greek Gods Anthology


My first book with Total-E-Bound just came out! I'm excited because now I'm international - how cool is that?


My story, "Fate Unbound" is included in this hot collection of stories featuring Greek gods.


Here's the official blurb:


Forced to leave her homeland of ancient Greece, Taryn must search modern day LA for the one man who will tame her wild heart. The Oracle has dictated that she must submit to all men who approach her. In doing so, she will find the single man who desires submission to her, then, and only then, may she return to her beloved home.

Adrian, frustrated by being forced live as an unrecognized son of Zeus, seeks his fate from The Oracle. The Oracle has a dictate for him as well, he must be patient, accept what comes to him, and never act on his own desires--especially those of the flesh. In doing so, he will, when the time is right, receive the recognition as Zeus’s son.


And an excerpt:


“I’d remember you if I’d seen you here before.”


The man, not much more than a boy really, was swaying as he leaned back, trying to get a look at her ass. Brown hair hung across his face, hiding one of his bright blue eyes. His jaw was pleasantly square, his skin nicely tanned and contrasting well with the casual, soft brown sweater clinging to his lean muscles. Denim pants hung low on his hips, showing off a small slice of his strong midsection.


He certainly wasn’t puny, or unattractive, but he wasn’t up to Taryn’s usual standards either.


He had no sword or markings of battle, and his face was fresh with the enthusiasm of youth.


She preferred her men strong and experienced. Vigorous. Capable. In Kate’s words–edgy.


But, she reflected ruefully, always getting what she wanted was the problem.


Or had been.


The newcomer set his hand on her waist, gripping it firmly, and leaned in. The bristled shadow of his facial hair brushed across her cheek as he spoke, his hot breath blowing across her neck. “I come here all the time. Want me to show you around?”


She shook her head, easily meeting his gaze because he wasn’t more than a few inches taller than she. “I’m meeting someone.”


Still holding her waist, he angled back, his gaze darting across the mass of people before coming back to her. “Another girl?”


Girl?


Did she look like an unripe, inexperienced girl?


Taryn straightened, looking down her nose at him, but because his attention had dropped to the swells of her breasts, her distain went unnoticed.


She set her hand on his to pull it away, but he gripped hers tightly and smiled, his vivid gaze coming back to her face. His grin was sweet, his azure eyes glowing brightly under the shaggy locks falling across his forehead.


A mature man would’ve been subtle and realised the importance of anticipation. This boy’s inexperience was well balanced by drunken confidence. “We can wait for her,” he replied, stretching to the bar to discard his empty beer bottle, intentionally letting his arm brush across the side of her breast. “Then I’ll show you both around.” Moving his gaze to the dusting of glitter she had skimmed between her breasts, he added, “This is a big place. You need to know where to go to get what you want.”


He seemed harmless enough, but Taryn wanted to end things quickly, before he made the offer she was forbidden to refuse.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sorcerer's Song

Available now from Ellora's Cave:




Sorcerer’s Song
By Cindy Spencer Pape
Part of the Ellora’s Cavemen Jewels of the Nile Volume III anthology
Out now from Ellora’s Cave

Buy Link: click here

When Sorcerer Cian hears a siren’s song on a cool Toronto night, he has no idea his life is about to change forever. Lyra’s life has been a long cycle of loneliness and meaningless encounters with mortals. One night with Cian turns that life upside down. Can their night of passionate sex turn into a love that will last forever? Together they work to find a way, challenging even the gods themselves for their chance.

ADULT excerpt:

Excerpt 2:

“Please!” She started to sway, caught herself by grabbing his shoulders. “I need you. Now.”

“Not yet.” He knew from the soul-gaze that she wasn’t in imminent danger, as long as she fed sometime tonight. Cian was nowhere near done playing. For some reason it was crucial to him that tonight be special, meaningful for both of them, rather than just mindless sex. He leaned her back against the boulder and dropped to his knees in the sand. “Spread your legs.”

Small but strong fingers threaded through his hair and gripped his scalp as she obediently widened her stance and let the rock bear the weight of her ass and lower back. Cian rewarded her with a leisurely lick along her gleaming cunt. She was as wet as the lake behind him. Thick cream coated his tongue and glistened on the skin of her upper thighs. Her pussy was smooth, with just two small tufts of damp silvery hair guarding her slit. He used his tongue to toy with the tiny curls and the edges of her puffy lips. Even in the moonlight he was somehow sure that like her nipples they were normally a pale shell pink.

“I could eat you all night,” he murmured. He blew a gentle puff of air along her heated flesh and she writhed, more warm wetness trickling onto his tongue. Ravenous for the taste of her, he licked along her opening. His tongue probed deeper with every stroke. Finally, he speared it up into her channel.

Lyra screamed and her thighs tightened down around Cian’s head. He smoothed them with his hands to ease them back apart. His tongue kept up the onslaught, thrusting rhythmically into her snug pussy. Every third or fourth stroke he paused to circle her erect clit. The tender nub poked free of its protective hood and hardened further with each moist swipe.

He knew she was close. Tremors began to course through her taut muscles. Her breathing was rapid and fractured and her cries had dissolved from words to whimpers. He slid his hands over the firm flesh of her thighs and used the tips of his fingers to part her pussy lips while both thumbs slipped into the entrance of her cunt. She was so tight they barely fit. He breathed in the heady fragrance of her musk and groaned. “Let go, Lyra. I want to watch you come apart for me.” His lips closed around her clit and he sucked at the same time he stroked inward with his thumbs.

“Goddess!” Her scream filled the night, crashed right along with the waves as she came. Her vaginal muscles clamped down around his thumbs and her hips bucked beneath his face. He maintained the suction until the ripples of her orgasm had faded then he soothed her with a series of slow thorough licks. Gasping raggedly she sagged against the rock. “Thank you. Now please—I need more.”

“Oh, we’re nowhere near through yet, leannan. That was just the beginning.”

“Your turn?” She stretched and made a sound that was nearly a purr. “I want to make sure you have fun too.”

“I have been,” he told her honestly, somewhat to his own surprise. He was never a selfish lover, but he’d never felt like this before—that his partner’s pleasure was far more important than his own. “Watching you respond to my touch is a pleasure.” That was an understatement. He’d nearly come in his trousers like an untried lad.

Look for Sorcerer's Song and five other FABULOUS stories by leading authors from Ellora's Cave in the new anthology!

Monday, September 29, 2008

What Made Me Want to Write...and keep at it!

I’ll bet everyone else has been asked this question more times than you can count: How and why did you decide to become a writer?
I don’t think it’s actually a conscious decision I made. I have been a reader all my life, since I could string three words together. My mother and sister were both avid readers, and our house was always jammed with books. My sister was more addicted to mainstream, fiction, but my mother loves mysteries, especially if they had a little romance.
So I grew up reading books by Erle Stanley Gardner and Ellery Queen – God, am I dating myself. LOL! And any mystery writer I could get my hands on. My real hero is a woman named Elizabeth Linington who also wrote as Lesley Egan and Dell Shannon. She passed away at 67 but she wrote nearly a hundred books, police procedurals, all of them with personal stories interwoven and I was just addicted to her. I still have all of her books.
But the more I read, the more I had the desire to create something myself. To put pen to paper-or fingers to keyboard-and see if I could become a story teller, too.
Raising a family and working didn’t really leave me the time I want to write but I kept notebooks filled with ideas, clippings, photos that suggested ideas, all the things that I use today to craft plots. And when my husband and I retired and moved to Texas, I thought surely this was the time. Especially when my husband say, “Okay, quit fooling around. Put your butt in that chair and write.”
I was sure, based on my past reading, that I would write a mystery. I even had it all plotted out and a profile for each of my characters (many of them based on people I’d worked with who I thought deserved to be shot or hanged! LOL!
Well, my dears, talk about hitting a brick wall. I wrote three chapters. Then I rewrote them. Then I rewrote them again. By the time two months had passed I never wanted to see those (expletive deleted) chapters ever again in this life or the next. I was ready to through out both my computer and my fledgling writing career.
Then I read a book, and it’s amazing how one book can change your life. I read CRY NO MORE By Linda Howard, and lordy, I was off to the races. I discovered that I craved r/s the way ducks crave water. I started looking for similar authors and pretty soon my budget was shot to hell with book buying.
But I finally realized where my heart lay. I sat down and wrote my first manuscript in two weeks. And let me tell you, it was AWFUL!!!! I, of course, thought I’d written a RITA award winner. What a blow to my ego when no on else thought so.
Although I’ve been very fortunate in my career in a short time, I have yet to sell that first effort. Have just finished the 40th rewrite -no joke-because I think I finally get it.
So if you’re stuck at a point in your writing, or wondering if the success fairy will ever visit you, take heart. She’s waiting right around the corner. Just be sure that what you’re right is from your heart because that’s what works the best.
I don’t think you’ll ever see MURDER AT MASS in print but maybe one of these days you’ll see TARGET, my first romantic suspense and the one that led me to write the others.
And by the way, thank you, Linda Howard.
Stay tuned!
Meanwhile, here’s an excerpt from what started life as Run For Your Life.

Prologue
Her hands were slick with sweat, slippery on the wheel. The sound of her heart beating was like a kettle drum inside the car.
Damn it! Get out of the way, she swore at the cars in front of her. Move, move, move.
She could still hear the voices, so cold and mater of fact.
…kill her…kill her…kill her…
And the swooshing of the door to the garage just as she backed her car out, tires screeching. The panic as she listened for another car engine to start.
The tiny silver rectangle was tucked in her bra, it’s touch almost burning her skin. God, if only she hadn’t been so clumsy and knocked those files to the floor. If only she’d been faster down the stairs.
If only…
Shut up, Kathryn, and think. This is no time to fall apart.
There it was now, up ahead. The on ramp to the Interstate. But which way to go? Which way? Which way? She took the northbound ramp, the first one she came to, and lost herself in the lanes of speeding cars.
Ohgodohgodohgod. They’re going to kill me. I have to get away.

Come visit me at:
www.judithrochele.com
www.desireeholt.com
www.myspace.com/judithdesiree