Spring Blogfest: Gina Rossi

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WRITING IN PARIS WITH SIMONE DE BEAUVOIR
Paris in the spring – is there a more beautiful cliché? A few days before I receive the final edits for my brand new release The Sea Horse Door, my Real Life Hero gets sent to Paris on a three month contract. Eagerly, I gather writing paraphernalia and pack.

We arrive on the chilly tail of winter, in the heart-breaking aftermath of the January terrorist attacks on the Charlie Hebdo offices. We go to the rally, the Sunday after, in the Place de la Republique, alongside one million others, thousands of whom are armed with pens, pencils and paintbrushes, rising as one to defend the principle of freedom of speech. I shall never forget that.

I must work. It’s Monday, and Paris remains eerily empty and subdued. Head down I tackle edits. When the final galley goes off, I lift my head to see a mist of green in the treetop outside our fifth storey window. Outside, I don’t dash about for basic groceries like I’ve been doing, but rather take a deep breath of early spring air and marvel at the feeling of rebirth and restoration. Never mind air pollution – there’s only freshly baked baguette, excellent coffee, and chocolate, mingling their way to my nostrils from the market stalls on nearby Rue de Buci, beckoning. I follow, passing a spectacular greengrocer, and a shellfish counter, laden with jewels of the sea nestling in crushed ice not yet melted by the early spring sun.

Tables are set on the sidewalk, where tables haven’t been: wineglasses, yellow roses in pink vases, cutlery and crisp white napkins. Umbrellas and awnings appear, tentative, not tempting meteorological fate. I find the Rue de Seine, and walk a few blocks, coming out of the narrow street alongside the gilt tipped dome of L’Académie Français onto the Quai de Conti. Standing on the lovelock-burdened Pont des Arts, I gaze at the sparkling river − pink, gold and green, like a Renoir.

Walking along the river, going with the flow for a while, I turn south, through different narrow streets lined with interesting doorways, tiny antique shops, compact art galleries, a vintage chandelier store dripping with crystals, a handmade soap boutique, bespoke perfume shop (is there not enough ready-made perfume in France?) and many small, charming hotels. I emerge on the Boulevard Saint Germaine and go into the church, alone but for one elderly gentleman, praying in the chapel devoted to military veterans mort pour la France. In the glow of ancient stained glass and candlelight, I visit the wooden statue of the saint himself, lighting a candle, to keep everything safe, for now, everyone, everywhere, please.

Coffee time, and where better than Les Deux Magots, a few steps across the road, since I’m a writer? I sit inside with the ghosts of the literary great; besides, it’s a little chilly, this first spring day to sit outside, overhung by the great grey shadow of the abbey.

If you come in through the door on Rue Bonaparte, you’ll see me in the far left corner, next to the window. Here, the best (and possibly the most expensive) coffee in Paris is served, but it arrives in a silver pot, with a jug of hot milk, sugar and a petit biscuit, and special little paper sleeves on the hot handles, so you don’t burn yourself.

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Photograph of Simone de Beauvoir at Les Deux Magots, Paris, 1944, courtesy of Tumblr

There’s a photo behind me, on the wall, of Simone de Beauvoir. I’m sitting at her table when I have an idea. Out comes my notebook. I scribble a few lines, with her looking over my shoulder; it seems the very best thing for a writer to do at this moment.

Later, I wander home. What’s the next project? Something set – or partially set − in eternally beautiful Paris? Definitely. Simone steered me in this direction. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it…

There’s a raindrop. I look up between the graceful, grey stone buildings adorned with curving black balustrades. Black clouds cover the sun, having their last moment. Nearly home I glance at the tree in the small square outside our front door. It’s greener than this morning, I’m absolutely sure of it.

GINA TheSeahorseDoor_w9279_750Although Lara Fairmont directs passion and focus into her London business, it goes bust with spectacular finality. Despondent, almost bankrupt, she nabs an astonishingly well-paid job as a carer for an elderly grande dame of Lobster Cove. What could be easier? Almost anything, for a start. A heady mix of misunderstanding, folklore, suspicion, and the hand of fate unbalances Lara from the moment she steps into Lucas Dalton’s desolate mansion on the shore. How many unanswered questions can there be? For a start, is her boss, Lucas – deep-sea diver, oil-rig maintenance man, and closet architect – unhinged? Is he way out of control, or merely lost in a dark place? Where’s his wife? Why so little light, and so much shade? Bewitched, Lara falls in love with the beauty of Maine, and the inexplicably irresistible Lucas. But, is he the devoted son, widower, and father he claims to be, or someone entirely different?

About the Author: Gina Rossi was born in South Africa. She grew up in Johannesburg and lived in Cape Town before moving to England to live near Oxford, in the Cotswolds, and then in the sunny south of France. Gina writes full time. Her debut, a historical romance ‘The Wild Heart’ published in 2012 was short-listed for the Joan Hessayon award. Gina is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA) in the UK, and the Romance Writers Organization of South Africa (ROSA)

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Spring Blogfest: Neva Brown

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Spring and Sunshine!

Dreary days and bitter cold had me feeling low and old. Sunshine and spring—I thought they’d never come, but they did.

Neva_murdock jasmineThe sun came out, bright and cheery. With gentle rays it warmed the air and tickled the earth to wakefulness. The grass turned green. That same sweet sun kissed the vines along the courtyard wall, so desperately cold and sad all winter. They heaved a sigh, and, oh, my, they bloomed in all their splendor.

My senses shouted spring is here. The smell of the warming earth, the touch of a gentle breeze, and the soft coo of a dove accompanied me on my daily walk. The sound of the flutter of new tassels in the red oak trees encouraging old live oak leaves as they rattled and fell, giving way to new leaves, bright and green, spoke of renewal. Back home, on the back patio I plopped down to rest and saw the antique rose had put on buds and stretched itself against the creaky trellis. Spring’s whispers, of new life, came from every direction and reminded me of the Resurrection.

On Easter Sunday, I’ll sit in church and hear the songs I know by heart. I’ll hear a sermon affirming what I know, by faith, is forever true. I’ll say a prayer of thanks for my salvation, for family, friends and for sunshine and spring with all its splendor, maybe even add a post script of thanks for being here in this my eighty-fourth year.

NEVA APrettyPenny_200Clayton Brandt knows the cost of a woman but he never knew the value of a woman until Penny, quiet, efficient, and determined, invades his workplace then his life.

Penny, inadvertently, sets off a chain of events that threatens her life and the happy-ever-after she hoped for with Clayton.

How they navigate through government agents’ plans, vindictive women’s plans, and their vastly different upbringing to find common ground where they can nurture a love that clings through all the troubles and trials takes is a compelling journey.

About the Author: Neva Brown, a retired secondary teacher/administrator, now enjoys the challenge of writing romance novels and doing editing for other romance writers. She lived on West Texas ranches most of her life and uses that culture and environment in many of her stories. She and her husband now live at Rio Concho West in San Angelo, Texas. They are amazed at how well they have adjusted to ‘city’ living.

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Spring Blogfest: Rachael Richey

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Spring in Cornwall

Daffodils at Broom Parc, Nare Head, Cornwall.It’s a beautiful spring day today. The sky is blue, the birds are singing and the fields and gardens are alive with daffodils. Spring in Cornwall is a glorious time of year, and one that makes you feel glad to be alive. There was a hint of frost when I got up at seven this morning, indicating that winter is still trying to hang on, battling it out with spring for as long as it can. A few snowdrops are still visible in the hedgerows as well, harking back to the colder days.

As I’ve been writing this, I’ve realised that I very rarely set any of my books in the springtime. I always seem to choose a season with more extremes of weather. A cold winter night when my characters can cuddle up together in front of a roaring fire, or get stuck up a mountain during a snowstorm; or a hot steamy summer’s day when the heat of the sun causes passions and emotions to run high. I’ve had them caught in a violent summer thunderstorm whilst being chased by a lunatic with a gun; had them make love in a wind-lashed caravan by the sea, in November; but so far I haven’t had any scenes set in the spring. The closest I’ve come to that so far, is in the book I’m currently writing. It opens with the hero bird watching on an almost deserted beach in late January. Hardly spring, but heading that way!

Spring is probably the season with most potential. The whole of the year is ahead of it; the hopefully, hot, barbecue-filled summer days; the wonderful luscious, fruitful autumn with the newly harvested fields lying golden in the sinking sun; and the exciting, cosy lead-up to Christmas. All in all, most definitely a season to set a book in!

perf5.000x8.000.inddFrontman of the grunge rock band NightHawk, Gideon Hawk has had enough of the rock star life. He is jaded, disillusioned, and haunted by the memory of an unresolved heartbreak. On a whim, he leaves the band in New York and heads to England in search of answers.

After attending the funeral of her estranged mother, Abigail Thomson makes a shocking discovery in her parents’ attic. The still-raw memories that surface, along with even more startling discoveries, force Abi to face a devastating truth that leads to a series of life-changing events. She and Gideon must race against time to reclaim the life stolen from them a decade before.

About the Author:Rachael Richey lives in Cornwall, England, with her husband and children. Her first book, Storm Rising was published by The Wild Rose Press earlier this year, and three others in the series are due to follow soon. She likes chocolate, pizza, and Pinot Grigio.

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Spring Blogfest: Velda Brotherton

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Historically Spring
By Velda Brotherton

Writing historical romances set in the west means making sure people live in the way that was proper for the day. What did spring mean in those days?

Bathing: Through the winter everyone had the same bathing habits — they didn’t — so they probably couldn’t tell each person carried a certain odor, in fact, they stunk. Don’t you imagine it was a great relief to be able to take a full body bath?

Eating: Poke comes up. This an edible and tasty green that emerges from the ground as the last of the snow melts. Though usually best known in southern menus, anyone living in the wild watched for the first green shoots. Those spears could be cut and eaten like asparagus, or one could wait till the plant leafed out well before cooking it in two waters, rinsing in between, then frying it in a pan of grease and seasoning with vinegar.

Clothing: Long underwear is shed. Men most especially wore longjohns and they were seldom removed from November till March. Imagine wearing the same set of drawers for five months out of the year. That’s why the old joke, don’t wash above your wrist bone till summer. It was as high as men could reach when washing their hands all winter. Women wore long cotton stockings and several layers of skirts most of the time. On the plains women tended to shed all but a cotton dress in the hot summers, unlike their city cousins who dressed in Victorian fashion year round into the 20th Century.

Cleaning: Airing mattresses and pillows in the sunshine, hanging rugs outside and beating the dirt out of them, wading about in shin-deep mud, banging soot from the stove pipes.

Gardening: Most important of all to these western settlers, spring meant planting seeds that would grow and provide food for them during the coming winter. Plows were pulled by mules, horses or men, depending on the wealth of the gardeners. Some could not afford animals because of the food it took to sustain them all winter, so the man would pull the plow and the woman would guide it across and back, turning up furrows in which to plant.

Because few had calendars, planting was done by signs provided by nature. Earliest plantings consisted of onions, lettuce and other greens, and garden peas. Then potatoes followed by green beans and corn planted when tree leaves were the size of squirrel’s ears. When the ground was warm enough to sit on with a bare bottom and not be cold cucumbers and squash seed went in the ground. Last of all came the tender tomato plants which had been grown from seed indoors during the early spring months. They were once known as love apples.

So when writing your western historical romances, be sure to get spring right as well as romantic.

VELDA final front coverLeft behind in enemy territory for nine years, tortured beyond endurance, Navy pilot Glen Tanner survives for one reason. To return home and destroy the wife who deserted him. Instead he meets Katie Kelly, who coaxes him back from hell and teaches him to love and trust again.

About the Author: Velda Brotherton writes of romance in the old west with an authenticity that makes her many historical characters ring true. A knowledge of the rich history of our country comes through in both her fiction and nonfiction books, as well as in her writing workshops and speaking engagements. She just as easily steps out of the past into contemporary settings to create novels about women with the ability to conquer life’s difficult challenges. Tough heroines, strong and gentle heroes, villains to die for, all live in the pages of her novels and books.

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Spring Blogfest: Lisa Beth Darling

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This year I don’t think there’s anyone in the US that’s looking forward to Spring with a keener eye than New Englanders like me. This winter seems to have lasted forever with its blizzards and snowstorms, at one point we had over three feet of the ‘white stuff’ on the ground and on my deck. I told my husband that after all of that shoveling we’d put in our workout time for the whole of 2015. Truth be told, all of that snow made me wish it was 1978 again. The Blizzard of ’78 was one of the best weeks of my childhood; schools were closed for nearly the entire week, roads were closed for days and no one could get off our street. The whole neighborhood was just one big happy snowed-in family. My friends and I did more sledding and had more snowball fights than anyone has a right to and it was a blast.

As always, here in New England, these past few weeks we had some really nice days where the sun shone brightly, it melted the snow and flooded my basement. There was lovely brown soggy grass on the ground and people had their doors and windows tossed open wide as they walked around in 40 degree weather without a jacket. Tonight (March 20th) we’re expecting 2-6 inches of snow.

LISA BETH roseWith any luck at all, this will be Winter’s Last Hurrah and, by the end of the month to the beginning of April spring will actually be sticking around for more than a teaser. Spring is my second favorite season right behind fall. The days become longer, people venture out of their houses and groggily awake from hibernation as the soggy brown grass turns bright green, the sky will be blue, and there will be white, purple, and yellow crocus randomly popping up in my yard along with cherry, apple, and nectarine blossoms on my trees. Everything will be new again. Soon after that, I’ll be planting flowers and veggies, mowing the grass (provided I get a new mower at some point, mine’s shot!) and enjoying beautiful days on my deck either just relaxing or with my laptop tapping away on the keyboard as The Muse and I write. I really love the spring and writing on the deck, come mid-summer it’s far too hot outside for that but for a few blissful weeks between May and July it will be as transformative for my writing as it is for the world around me.

LISA BETH coldnovemberrainsmallRick felt his heart drop; she was here but she’d already picked out her prey for the night.

Feeling his jaw clench as he tried to decide if he should stay or go, Tony put a glass of scotch on the bar for him. There wasn’t any sense in letting good booze go to waste. Turning his back to his Mystery Woman, Rick retrieve the drink only to discover the large mirror behind the bar gave him a better angle on her companion for the evening; male, maybe thirty, good looking. Lucky guy didn’t know what he was in for tonight. The Mystery Woman raised her empty glass to catch Tony’s attention and, like a good bartender, Tony went right over to her with a fresh Martini. Downing the double-shot, Rick gazed in the mirror to stare at her reflection, she was staring at his back from the corner of her pale green eyes as she chatted with the man across from her.

Rick looked away wondering if it was just coincidence or if she’d noticed him sitting there so he gave it a few moments while he lingered over his drink before glancing into the mirror again. This time she wasn’t taking a sneak peek at him from the corner of her eye she was looking directly at him, past him, at his reflection. When she saw him staring back at her, she smiled for him. Shy. Precocious. Full of promise.

Was she wishing he’d come over there? Maybe. Only one way to find out.

Rick eased himself off the barstool and made his way over to where the couple was engaged in light conversation. “Excuse me,” he said to the man in the booth, “You’re in my seat.”

“Pardon?” The man asked as he looked from him to her. “Were you waiting for this guy?”

“Actually,” she said softly, “I was.” She was surprised and delighted by the Doc’s forthrightness. “Hi, Do-c.”

There it was, ‘Do-c’, just the way she said in it his dreams, with that extra little coy kick she gave the ‘c’. It made him want to melt. “Hi.” Rick said to her. “Three’s a crowd.” He said to the man. “Go on beat it.”

About the Author: Writing with a strong passionate flare that never flinches, Lisa defiantly ventures where other writers dare not tread. Daring the reader to delve deep into the dark she creates stories filled with heart stopping action, gripping drama, nail biting suspense, and hot steamy sex. This is dark romance at its gritty best. ALL FICTION works are intended for Members of A Mature Adult Audience who love to submerse themselves in the rich seduction of worlds full of love, lust, rage, redemption, obsession, betrayal and madness. They are not for those who are faint of heart or who typically enjoy a sweet read.

By opening one of her books, you will enter a myriad of worlds from the heights of Olympus to life in a small New England town. Enter and discover characters bold and brash as Ares God of War, Colonel Kevin Smith and Richard Mason along with villains so dark and ruthless you’ll love-to-hate them.

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Spring Blogfest: Marin McGinnis

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Easter traditions – by Marin McGinnis

Easter is one of my favorite holidays. I am not a particularly religious person, so although it is one of Christianity’s most important holidays, I am fond of it for its traditions. My mother started making Easter Pigeons—sweet dinner rolls shaped like birds—when I was a teenager, and she continues to make them every year. (I tried to make them once and failed miserably—sadly, baking is one talent that I did not inherit, although the lamb roast I make every year is pretty tasty.) My father, a graphic artist, introduced me and my sister to the tradition of Ukrainian Easter Eggs when we were younger. I remember spending hours blowing the yolks out of eggs and applying hot wax and colors to the eggs in elaborate patterns, despite our distinct lack of Ukrainian heritage. And then, of course, there was the Easter basket.

As a writer of Victorian era romance, I am always interested in uncovering the origins of traditions and learning how (and whether) traditions that we love today were celebrated in the Victorian era. Easter, of course, has been celebrated for nearly two thousand years, and people have been dying Easter eggs since the 12th century and eating chocolate eggs since the 19th. Victorian children would have dyed Easter eggs much like we do today, although they would have used beets and onion skins, among other things, to dye them. According to The Virtual Victorian, the Cadbury Egg beloved of so many today is a creation of the Victorians. John Cadbury introduced his first solid chocolate egg in 1842, and the hollow egg in 1875. Instead of the fondant used now, it was filled with dragees (yes, I had to look this up—they are candies with a hard outer shell, like those tiny candy balls, Jordan almonds or, I suppose, M&Ms), marzipan, or icing. The Victorians also embraced other traditions, largely from Germany, that we practice today—Easter cards, Easter egg hunts, the Easter bunny, and Easter lilies.

Today my favorite tradition is still the chocolate. I buy my son a big chocolate bunny every year, and he slowly nibbles away at it every day as long as it lasts. As for me, my favorite is Cadbury’s mini eggs—I buy two bags and stash one in the freezer, so I can make them last longer than my kid’s bunny.

What’s your favorite Easter tradition?

MARIN StirringUptheViscount_w9340_750Seeking to escape an abusive husband, Theodora Ravensdale answers an ad in The Times for a job as cook in a country home. A fortuitous house fire enables her to fake her own death and flee to northern England and live under an assumed name. But Theodora’s refuge is not all she would wish, when she stirs emotions in the heir to the estate, Jonathan Tenwick, and in herself.

Meanwhile, as the connection between Theodora and Jonathan grows, her husband learns she did not perish in the fire, and searches for her. Fearing he is close to finding her, Theodora must flee again to protect the family and the viscount for whom she cares deeply. In the final confrontation with her husband, Theodora learns she is stronger than she ever knew, and love is worth fighting for.

About the Author: Clevelanders are tough, a bit cynical, and just a little crazy, and Marin McGinnis is no exception. She writes smart and sexy tales of Victorian-era romance.

When she’s not chasing after big dogs or watching tween-aged children skate around Ohio hockey rinks, you can find her hanging out online.

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Spring Blogfest: James Cox

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This spring why don’t you take a trip to Mars…

Earth is considered a desolate planet and is used as a prison. Humanity lives on Mars in a single but always expanding city. Technology being what it is keeps us humans breathing. Our government is ruled by Max Wexmen. He’s a twisted man and he changed our entire structure. Now it is illegal to drink alcohol, do any drugs, have kinky sex, and, of course, smoke. Homosexuality is a death sentence. Women are to be kept for breeding. Dark-skinned men are used as slaves like back in the darkest days of history. The bad guys rule the world and the good guys are the outlaws. That’s why I created the motorcycle club. We take our hover bikes and fight the injustice on Mars. The battle is going to be bloody.

I’m Outlaw, president of this MC. I started it with my best friend, Liam. I’m trying to hold it all together while keeping us out of prison. We need a miracle to beat the government, but the MC isn’t used to help or backing down. We’ll fight tooth and nail, laser bullets and knives, to take the corrupt empire down. I just hope we don’t leave a trail of our loved ones behind us. Hold onto your nuts, things are about to get bumpy.

Welcome to Mars.

Join us as we fight for equality and justice. Tattoo’s, piercings, hover bikes and explosions. It’s going to be an epic battle for the surface of Mars.

uha1What if bad guys ruled the world and the good guys were the outlaws?

As President of the Outlaw MC of Mars, Knox needs to keep his head clear and always stay on alert. That’s easier said than done. In the middle of this war with the government, another MC wants to start making some big moves. Knox knows they need to watch the their back but he always wants to protect his club brothers. The laws are too chaotic not to bend and try to break. Women are for breeding. Dark skinned men are slaves. Homosexuals are executed. He had a problem with all of them. Especially the last part, because Knox was in love with his VP.

Knox and Liam grew up watching each other’s back. That didn’t change when they were both sent to prison or when they turned helplessness into a thriving motorcycle club. But Knox is determined to keep Liam at a distance to keep the MC objective safe. Then Liam is injured and Knox is faced with a terrible truth. What if Liam dies before Knox can say just how much he loves the sexy VP?

Explosions, hover bikes, corruption and hot sex. Mars is supposed to be humanities savoir but will it keep two men from finding happiness in each other arms?

About the Author: James is rather hard to define. He’s obviously into men, but also finds women alluring. To him reading gay fiction is so stimulating he’s taken up a pen (keyboard) and started writing. The stories in his head are edgy, hot enough to embarrass him at work and meant to entertain.

He has a crush on his boss who doesn’t know he’s bisexual and always staring at his ass. He loves writing, particularly when it takes place in other worlds or galaxies. He only has gay books out but one day he’ll venture into pussy territory. Want to know more? Just contact him at his website.

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Spring Blogfest: Jovana Rodolakis

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Easter in Hollywood

Since my debut novel Forever in Hollywood is set in Hollywood on a big budget movie set I figured it would be a great time to provide a little blog post about Easter time in Hollywood. The Heroine of my book is a young hopeful actress. If she lived in Los Angeles this is what she would face.

Easter in Hollywood is also known as Pilot season! A very exciting time for the industry. Networks will begin casting new hopeful actors around January for pilots. Casting can run through Easter, yet most shows start filming their pilots in April.

This is the time when thousands upon thousands of new actors and actresses with few or no acting credits are looked at for possibly big roles in television. This is one time of the year where newbies have the biggest chance to break into the business. If you live in LA you probably start hearing people talk about pilot season before Christmas, and all through the spring you can drive down the street and see people waiting around unassuming building entrances with 8×10 papers in their hands waiting for their audition.

If the hopeful actor manages to land a role in one of the roughly 100 pilots that year the real work begins. They will film a single episode or even just a short 10 minute skit to generate interest in the show.

Once editing is done the show will go to a test screening (or private viewing where the audience gives it a score). It could be picked up as a series by a big network if the test screening gives it a good rating. Usually the shows that are filmed and picked up in the spring are not shown until the fall season.

forever in hollywoodMarissa Pearson is ready to take on the world. That is, as long as the world isn’t confrontational. She never learned to deal with opposition, instead she runs from it. She ran from a violent boyfriend, a cheating husband, and now she’s on the run from Andrew Reed. He’s the sexy Hollywood playboy intent on nailing her down in more ways than one.

Long days on a movie set can bring people together. Soon Marissa finds herself falling for the wrong guy–again. When Marissa’s past catches up with her, in the form of a vengeful ex, she learns the price of running. But Andrew channels the heroes he plays on-screen in order to give Marissa the strength to do the right thing.

Only when Marissa learns to face challenges thrown at her, will she also learn Andrew was the right guy all along.

About the Author: Jovana Rodolakis learned from a young age how important creativity and imagination were. Reading helped expand her creativity and writing became a release. She holds a degree in Biology. When she’s not writing she’s often trying to find an adventure, be it urban exploring, traveling, or random shenanigans around Los Angeles.

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Spring Blogfest: Emma Jane

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Win one e-copy of Otherworld by Emma Jane and Liz Powell by commenting on this post. Also click on the banner to enter the rafflecopter to win a $25 Amazon/BN GC, one of four book packs, or one of four swag packs (US only on book and swag packs).

When writing Otherworld we looked to Celtic mythology and researched a few of the goddesses who could perhaps act as our hero Jim’s mother. We decided to base her on Cliona (Clíodhna) in the end – the Queen of the Banshees. But there are so many fascinating characters in Irish myth.

Eostre/Ostara is the Celtic goddess of spring and people still worship her at festivals all over the UK. As you can probably tell, she gave her name to Easter (and oestrogen) and one of her symbols is the hare – which has become the Easter bunny! People used to dance around the birch tree between the Spring Equinox and Beltane in celebration of Eostre.

For myself, I celebrate Easter by eating hot cross buns and chocolate eggs, although I would happily do that any time of the year. I find myself wondering how the lead characters in Otherworld would celebrate.

Jim comes from a Catholic background, so I imagine his family would have a traditional celebration attending an Easter Vigil mass, and a feast, though Jim himself isn’t one for attending church.

The other main character, Liam, would be far more relaxed about the whole thing. His parents might cook a Sunday dinner for the family, but Liam would be more interested in heading out for a party. As a child he would’ve been spoiled with Easter egg hunts.

To celebrate spring, I’m giving away one e-copy of Otherworld. If you like a touch of the mystical, then this book might be for you.

otherworldArchetypal English toff William “”Liam”” Barnes is in big trouble. He’s borrowed money from Irish gangster Davey McGrath with one simple condition. Get a special prism from Matthew Luttrell – seducing Matthew if he has to – and bring it back. But the prism isn’t with Matthew, and Liam makes a decision he can’t undo, meaning he’s twenty thousand pounds in debt to a vicious gangster and has no idea where to find the prism.

That is, until he meets stoic Irishman Jim Henvey, the real owner of the prism, who has a cruel demi-goddess of a mother on the warpath for him. Liam and Jim quickly find themselves tied up in each other’s messes, and with more than just the mortal world out to get them, they must find their way out of a battle between dimensions and still have time to figure out their feelings for each other. Or will they just sink deeper into trouble?

About the Author: Emma Jane was born in Somerset, England, in the 80s. She grew up in a little village and then moved to a town where she still lives, but from which she soon hopes to escape. She has been writing stories since primary school, some of which still survive in notebooks in her dad’s attic, and wanted to be an author as soon as she realised it was a possible career choice and “Pony” or “Ninja” weren’t viable options.

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Buy the book at Torquere Books.

Spring Blogfest: Jami Brumfield

Spring blogfest banner 2 copy
Win a kindle copy of To Love a Dragon (one winner) or an audiobook copy of The Witch’s Vampire (one winner)(Winners must be 18 or above) by commenting on this post. Also click on the banner to enter the rafflecopter to win a $25 Amazon/BN GC, one of four book packs, or one of four swag packs (US only on book and swag packs).

Spring is here and that means it’s time to clear out the cobwebs, clean out the closets, plant the seeds of new flowers, and prepare for the warmth to come. Being a relationship coach, hypnotherapist and romance author I thought it would be fun to create a new series of posts on spicing things up in your relationship. Open up the box and allow the spring to fling free so to speak (pun intended).

We’ll start this series of posts with tips to sweep away the cobwebs in the bedroom. If things are getting stale in that arena with your partner it is probably time to do some spring cleaning and open yourself up to new ideas. Missionary is fine and dandy for the occasional romp but can get monotonous over time. Trying different positions can really be fun and if done in a safe environment with solid communication it can help create stronger bonds (no pun intended).

I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s take a step back and talk about communication. There are two important parts to communication for it to be effective. Talking and listening. If both parties in the conversation are not participating in both sides of the conversation it won’t be effective. Start by bringing the topic of bedroom play up with your partner. Ask your partner questions like; are you interested in trying different things, have you ever had a fantasy unfulfilled, what is your favorite part about our bedroom play, etc.? This will get the conversation started, ideas flowing, and eventually the motors will start revving.

Hopefully this will send you on a path to trying new, exciting things and being open to communicating with your partner on your likes and dislikes. Readers can even get some great ideas from their favorite romance novel… heck, suggest your partner read one and see what ideas spring forth from those written words.

Another component to successful communication that will be built along way is feeling safe to share your thoughts and ideas. Sometimes we allow ourselves to get repressed from experiences and/or beliefs that were built up over time. This can keep a person from speaking their minds, which in some cases is a lesson in tact but in other cases can be a hindrance. It’s important to feel safe when communicating with your partner. This keeps the passive aggression at bay and that is a very good thing. It also helps to freshen things up in your relationship. Building this safe haven in communication takes time. Being open and honest takes time but with the right nurturing, just like a flower seed begins to grow with the spring so shall the relationship.

The long and short of this post, the biggest tip of the day to help inspire growth in your relationship is to start opening a dialogue with your partner. It doesn’t have to be on bedroom play right away. You can build up to that. Start simple, water, feed and watch that communication seed bloom. Before you know it the bond will grow too.

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Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful day.

JAMI To Love a Dragon BC 2Homicide Detective Charity Holiday comes across some interesting characters when she works on a murder case of a stripper. One of those characters happens to be her mate.

Malick Pendragon isn’t thrilled when his mate, who happens to be a witch, walks into his life. The timing is completely wrong. What he doesn’t expect is her life to be threatened or that he’d have to save her or risk dying himself.

**This story contains adult language and situations. It is not intended for audiences under 18**

About the Author: Jami M Brumfield has a passion for the paranormal, supernatural, and mythological worlds for most of her life. She believes there is a kernel of truth in every story and loves playing detective to discover what that hidden truth is. She has written most of her life. She started with poems and short stories, then graduated to journalism working for online websites. It was only a natural progression that her love of writing and her passion for the unknown would combine. Her books are a product of that union. Check out all nine of her paranormal series on Amazon.

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Buy the book at Amazon.