The Romance Reviews

The Romance Reviews

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Special Announcement! I need your vote.My book is in the semi finals for best Urban Fantasty!

It just goes to show you how busy a body can become when you find out you are a semi finalist in your publishers Reader Choice Awards. If not for a heads up from one of my wonderful fans I would have been clueless.
So with much fanfare, drum rolls and 
ecstatic shouts I announce Dark Passion Rising is up for best Urban Fantasy!Plus you may just win something just for voting!

Now here is the thing, I really, really need your votes. If you liked my Dark Breed Enforcers please show it some love by voting for it. Just click here.
Thank you in advance for your support. Now I'm going to take a moment to breathe before battling all the to do's on my ever growing list.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Have A Thankfully Naughty Time- I have something just a tad wicked

The holiday season is soon beginning and I thought I'd just start a tad bit early this year. With so many things to be thankful for I thought it would be fun to make up a wickedly naughty list. From mild to oh, my God, scorching hot. I have a few things I'm truly happy exist.

  • Dark Chocolate
  • Cheesecake
  • Black Lace Corsets
  • Stiletto Heels - in any color
  • Silk Scarfs
  • Bed posts (Oh, yeah, you got the picture.)
  • And Fur Lined Manacles!
Now let me know one thing you are Thankfully Naughty for, Just one and it can be as tame or wild as you wish. I'll be picking one winner who will receive my recent Christmas Anthology release Happy Holidays from Crescent Moon Lodge. We have everything from sensual to hot stories for you to keep warm this holiday season.

At the Crescent Moon Lodge, anything is possible and Christmas wishes come in the most unusual packages.
When four friends win a trip to Mount Charleston, NV for Christmas, they are unprepared for what awaits. At Crescent Moon Lodge, your deepest wish comes true, whether you’re prepared for it our not.
A Howling Yuletide –By Shannan Albright
Fleur Delecourt knew her Christmas holiday was doomed from the start. Not only did she hate the cold and snow, but also she found herself saddled with a ski instructor, courtesy of a friend’s twisted sense of humor.
Werewolf Rory Furr left Scotland to find a life and pack of his own. What he was not prepared for was finding his mate in the form of a petite redhead who tests both his self-control and patience.

Christmas I.C.E. Magic – By Siobhan Muir

Christmas I.C.E. Magic – For Lily Sinclair, Christmas means sorrow and loss since the death of her twin brother. The magic is gone and she only wants to see her brother one more time. As an Ice Demon Zachary Snow is used to rescuing people in winter, but he’d never rescued anyone like Lily. Now he must convince her the magic she wants is in life itself.

Bon Appetite from the Lunar Eclipse Restaurant-By R.M. Sotera

 Executive chef vampire Michael Stake loves his job at the Lunar Eclipse Restaurant. Although food critics do not visit often, he welcomes world-renown critic Penelope Rothchild to his establishment. That’s when all hell breaks loose.

World-renown food critic Penelope Rothchild looks forward to her new assignment in Las Vegas.  Christmas in the West, what could possibly go wrong? Everything. But it’s all in the name of the perfect meal.

Boo Christmas – By Johanna Riley

Don't forget to leave me a comment with what you're thankfully naughty, or wicked for to be entered.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Pick Me Up Monday - Upcoming Releases Whoot!

I love this guys smile and what a great way to start the week. I also love the tat he's sporting, yum!
Well, I'm hoping for a little more moving room this week. I've been taking multi-tasking to a whole new level this week. Open registration has started for Hot Mojave Knights and setting up the website has been time consuming. Then the last touches to my latest release is being done, and I'm happy to report Happy Holidays from Crescent Moon Lodge will be released this week!
I'm also nearing completion of the rough draft of Soul Fire and can't wait to get it out to the world before Christmas. That, my friends will be it for 2013.
For 2014? Wow, do I have my plate full. Zeke's book Dark Desire should be the first book released early in the year. There will be more books following Soul Fire and of course the Dark Breed Enforcers continue. There will be a few other anthologies thrown in there just for good measure so, all around I'm looking for a pretty good year to come.
Well, back to the present and the details screaming at me at the moment. Have a wonderful week.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Pick Me Up Monday - Happy Veterans Day!

On behalf of all those who keep our country safe, you have my deepest respect and unfailing support. Thank you for your sacrifice, courage and honor. I am only one voice, small as it may be, it still rises in praise to all you have done. Past, present and future, you are the heros who inspire my work and the blueprint for the men I write.
Although we have a day in remembrance. It seems too little for all the men and women who put their lives on the line for us. All so we can live free without fear of our rights being taken away.
For me, you will be remembered all year for everything you do and the families you leave behind as you keep our country safe.
I would normally give you an update on my latest releases and WIPs on Mondays. Not this week. This week is dedicated to our service men and women fighting for us in hostile lands. I pray you all keep safe and come back to your loved ones soon. God bless each one of you.
Now you know I couldn't go without giving you something to get you through the week. I know I sure needed this. Have a great week and we will talk again. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Writers block: Unlocking the creative side of your brain

We all got through periods where our inspiration seems to have deserted us. Our minds churn and panic sets in as deadlines loom and everyone wants an update on your latest and greatest…And you got nada, nothing, zip.

You spend your time staring at a blank page or end up playing Candy Crush. As the clock ticks away you become desperate to unblock your muse. Everything you put on paper is uninspired and gawd awful! And you wonder if you will ever find that elusive spark again.

Yeah, I like every writer I know we have been there, done that and got the tee-shirt and the coffee mug. I’ve heard of so many ways to set your muse free, but do they work? And if they do work is it a temporary fix?

I’ve come to learn it’s all a case of personality…yours. How your brain works, the mechanics of what sparks the creative side of your brain. Are you a left brained person? If so then a more analytical approach may be your answer. For those who are right brained it’s all about creativity.

Then, you have those like me. I use both sides of my brain, which usually results in a war between the two opposing forces.  Yeah, my mom should have never forced me to use my right hand, now I have the two sides at war on how best to approach things. I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let’s first discuss those wonderful analytical, oh so logical left brained writers.

Most of the time these are the people who plot out every detail they can before writing down a single word. A great way to keep yourself from writing yourself into a corner true, but when inspiration is not even a spark, sometimes it can be hard to  keep your focus.  For those lovely left brainers there are different ways to use your “down” time in a positive way. If you work a series try fleshing out the overall story arc, the characters and the individual plots for each character who the series will deal with. If you have already done this and still find yourself dead in the water, discern where the trouble started. Chances good one of your main characters is at fault. Either you have them feeling or reacting to something which goes against their nature. You can also try writing a different scene or chapter. If all of this still won’t shake you out of your funk you may want to start another book. Sometimes your brain needs a break and given a fresh idea may open the floodgates so to speak.

For my right brained, oh so creative writers. Those, who write by the seat of their pants, following their spark like a sailor would follow the North Star, try a little bit of plotting. Not much, just enough to keep you on the right path. Sometimes injecting a small amount of order into your creative chaos can keep your muse happy and talking with hardly a mishap to be had. Though words like character sheets and outlines give you a nasty rash of hives, try just a little bit of…organization –there, I said the dreaded O word and lived.  Another thing to help keep the flow of writing smooth is to work on other creative projects. Whatever you do, paint, sew , pottery or even scrapbooking! Use these small hobbies of yours to recharge and work with your writing. I myself, usually oil paint to help me keep from getting blocked. Whatever you do, keep your story firmly in mind as you focus your creativity on another different project remember it’s only a breather and give yourself a time limit to get back to work.

Now, for those like me who walks the middle line between the two you can try each of the suggestions given, find out what works for you. I even tried meditation at one point…wanted to gnaw off my arm after fifteen minutes and got nowhere, but I did try it. Yay me!

I found a great site to find out just how much right or left brained you are. It’s a quick and fun test to take its at:

No one has the perfect, sure fire answer to help with writers block. There are some out there who believe writers block doesn’t even exist. Whatever you may call the struggle with your inspiration really matters very little. What’s important is how you work through it.

There are times when you just need some R&R plain and simple. Burn out from too many intense hours at the keyboard and not enough time engaging in the world is just as harmful. So go ahead and allow yourself time to play your games, have a date night with your hubby or just take a weekend off from anything to do with writing. Give your brain a break and allow yourself to live in the world guilt free. Your word count will not suffer since the time you write will be much more productive.

Try different exercises which will help you focus, go with what makes sense to you and what you find works. Don’t worry so much about writers block, instead make it a positive way to make your writing better.

Above all keep the passion. We write because we love it keep that foremost in your mind and enjoy the journey.

Happy Writing


Monday, November 4, 2013

Pick Me Up Monday - Name the Series

Happy Monday all!
Well it's the start of another work week and I hope everyone is getting settled in.
For me, I'm getting back into my own rhythm and getting very excited for fall. I'm just waiting for word from the editor with the all go and the Christmas Anthology will be published. Along with this, I'm finishing up Soul Fire and am running an unofficial contest to name the series. The winner will receive the arc in eBook form AND a $20.00 Amazon gift card. Can't beat that hum? Just leave your suggestion here or on my Facebook page to be considered. Read the Blurb at my website to get a feel for the series.
I'm also setting up a book launch for the anthology called Merry Christmas from Crescent Moon Lodge and with the launch, I'm setting up a blog hop with the other authors in the book with chances to win the eBook.
In other news, I'm nearing the end of the first draft of Zeke's book Dark Desire and am delighted with the way this book is coming together. The muse is roaring through the book and giving me some surprising twists and turns I never thought of. It sure worked out even better than I thought.
My muse is a blood thirsty and devious one. And I love ever second of it.
Well, best get back to work have a wonderful week. 

Friday, November 1, 2013

Making it Real -Fleshing out a Three Deminsional Character

There are as many ways to build a character as there are stars in the sky. In fact, there are so many books and blogs out there giving you detailed lists of do's and dont's it can be a bit overwhelming. I'm a literal-minded  person. When you say something is green I see green, not olive green. I may be an artist but when it comes to the mechanics of a thing, I tend to need it spelled out in a simple and direct manner.
Then take it exactly as I read it.

So how do I go about building my characters? The easiest way for me, and to appease both the logical and creative sides of my noggin, is pulling up a word document and putting the basic frame together. These are:

Appearance (height,build, hair and eye color.):
Antagonist or Protagonist.

When I'm satisfied with my foundation, I look at photos for the character to go with my bare bones. I use Google or Pinterest to find someone who resembles the outward look I'm after. I do this for all the key characters. Now it's time to build on the frame work I've begun and add the following questions to their page.

Where were they born, Accent?:
Body Quirks (eye twitch etc.):
Quote or pet saying (for one of my characters is,"kill them all and let God sort them out."):
This layer starts to bring out the unique personality of each of your characters, laying the foundation for a real three-dimensional  person.  These four "tells" not only shape the person, but can give your story plot a deeper layer bringing out hidden points, which may have been overlooked in the overall development of your plot. Now, you are ready for the fleshing out part of each character. This plays an integral part in how your story will develop and many times has changed my overall concept giving my story a more cohesive and layered plot. The reactions of the characters become plausible and can be easier for the reader to relate to. Remember you want to have your characters stay with the reader and for me, this is what helps to make that happen.
Now you are ready for the most important part of your character development. Place on each character sheet the following:

A small bio of character:
What is his/her internal conflict at the beginning?:
What is his/her external conflict at the beginning?:
What lesson must he/she learn by the end of the story?:

When you have answered these questions, you can keep their information in a file with your book in progress. I also print them out and tape them up on the wall where I can have fast access to them while writing. If you write a series where these characters make an appearance you may want to hold on to them as a quick reference so it keeps continuity going in your series. This also helps you to keep facts straight about them throughout the book. Nothing is worse than having the hero change eye color during the story, or react/do something which your character would never do. This keeps them real.
It may seem like a lot to put down, but with just a little preparation before you start in can save you from writing yourself in a corner and worse, fight with a scene because it is against your character's innate traits to do what you wish them to do. Saving you more rewrites in the end.
I hope you will find this helpful to you as you build your story. I know many pansters (people who write by the seat of their pants.) who benefited from having a small amount of preparation before delving into their story. Explore and try new ideas, keep an open mind to different techniques since they may just make the work easier and free your muse to soar.

Happy Writing!