Thursday, April 28, 2011

Totally HOT Thursday

I am having myself a little party as I sit here and post today's THT guy. I'm serious. I have a glass of sweet tea to my left, a bowl of strawberries to my right, and Bryan Adams serenading me on my laptop. If I wasn't still in my pajamas, I would take a picture and post it.  Now, back to THT!

When I first saw the made for TV movie in 1998 titled, Stolen women Captured Hearts, which featured Janine Turner and Patrick Bergen, I fell in love with this gentleman. He was gorgeous and a very good actor. If you haven't seen the movie, it is about two white women who are stolen by Indians and taken to camp. One woman fights her captivity and wants nothing but to get home, while the other woman falls in love with her captor. It's a good movie.

The gentleman I am referring to is MICHAEL GREYEYES.

Michael was born  Michael Joseph Charles Greyeyes on June 4, 1967. He is a Plains Cree from Muskeg Lake First Nation in Saskatchewan Canada.

His mother is from the Sweetgrass First Nation and his father is from the Muskeg Lake First Nation.

Michael was only 10 when he was accepted into the Canadian National Ballet School of Toronto. He performed with them for ten years.

He is a graduate of the National Ballet School in 1984. Michael then apprenticed with the National Ballet of Canada and joined as a full Corps de Ballet member in 1987.

After three years, he left the National Ballet to join the company of choreographer, Eliot Field in New York.

Michael earned a masters degree in Fine Arts of the School of Theatre and Dance at Kent State University in the field of acting. He was at the top of his class in May of 2003.

Later, he explored the traditional dance of his ancestors in the Powwow. This exploration into this type of dancing became a documentary titled, "He who dreams: Michael on the Powwow Trail."
Michael's acting career started in 1993 in which he starred in TNT's  "Geronimo". His character was "Juh".  You may have also seen him in such TV appearances in "Walker, Texas Ranger", "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman", and "Magnificent Seven." Just to name a few.

He also won the title role in 1997 in "Crazy Horse." In films, he starred in "Firestorm" and "League of Old Men."  To see more of Michael's movie and TV credits, you may go to Fortune City.
Michael is married to Nancy Latoszewski and they have two daughters. They currently live in Cleveland and Michael continues to explore the fields of dance, choreographer, actor and director. To see a clip of the movie Stolen Women, Captured  Hearts, please click the link.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Interview with Author Renee Vincent

Today I’m interviewing Renee Vincent. Her book, Silent Partner, is a contemporary romance and was just released in April 2011.

Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.

Silent Partner is a special story that I wrote where the heroine has a secret and the hero is unaware of it, even after meeting her, dancing with her, and having a one-night stand with her. There is a play on words with the title and, like my other romances, there is a twist at the end. Silent Partner is my first attempt at writing a contemporary romance and I’m pleased to say it’s been well received so far.

Describe the genre of this particular title, and is the only genre you write in?

Like I said above, it's a contemporary romance, but I’ve found that my niche is still historicals. I have always loved to read them for the sake of their deep plots, intriguing characters, and extraordinary “period” time frames. I enjoy being taken to a different place and time when I read historicals and logically, it’s a genre in which I love to write as well. Though I’ve wholeheartedly enjoyed trying my hand at the contemporary genre, my heart remains in historical love stories. Hence, my Emerald Isle Trilogy.

When did you start writing toward publication?

My journey toward publication was not the usual path that most writers find themselves walking. I wrote Ræliksen, my first historical romance, for no other reason than because I’ve always wanted to write one and because my sister, who passed in 2005, had told me before she died to finish it. I was not initially aiming at a career in writing. I was simply doing what my sister encouraged me to do, never giving thought to submitting to a publisher.

In 2008, I self-published Ræliksen and was working diligently on its sequel, Mac Liam. Once my first book started to gain great reviews, I began thinking this might be the right career choice for me. Consequently, my dream of being an author seemed a bit closer to reality than I’d ever imagined possible.

Then, in 2010, I was signed by Turquoise Morning Press. We would re-release Ræliksen (with a much better cover) and publish the other two books in the series in the months to follow. After that, I pitched my idea of Silent Partner to TMP and the rest is history.

Did you have several manuscripts finished before you sold?

I wish. When I sold the trilogy, Mac Liam was only half way finished and I had a deadline of a few months before it would release 5 months after Ræliksen. Putting that on top of doing another bout of edits for Ræliksen, I was severely worried I wouldn’t make either deadline. But somehow, I pulled through and the release of both books came off without a hitch, relatively speaking.

After about a week’s worth of a breather, I had to get writing on Silent Partner, because its release was only four months away from Mac Liam’s. Yes, I was glutton for punishment then.

Why have you become a published author?

It has always been my dream since I was a little girl. As a child, I wrote stories, poems, and songs, and I’ve saved every one.

Do you have any rejection stories to share?

Oh, yes. Don’t we all…

Mine came after I first finished Ræliksen and began investigating the publishing world. I quickly found out that no one would readily sign me, much less take a look at my work, simply because my word count was over 190,000 words. Talk about a rude awakening.

I had no idea there was such a thing as a word count stipulation. And for the next few years, I began cutting Ræliksen back, removing unimportant characters and frivolous plot paths, while still trying to maintain flow of sentence structure, character development, and pace. It was the hardest thing I ever had to do as an author because I was so worried I would ultimately destroy Ræliksen’s beautiful love story piece by piece. But in the end, it was the best thing I could’ve ever done, not to mention the critical learning experience that came with it.

What is your writing routine like?

I am a mother of two, so I wake up, get the kids off to school and then make my coffee. (That is a must.) Then I spend the next few hours of my morning answering emails, doing promo for other authors on my romance site, Deep In The Heart Romance, and, of course, fitting in a bit of promo for myself.

At about 10am, I can finally concentrate on writing.

What sort of promo do you do? Do you have help?

I use the usual social networks daily (Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Linked, etc.) but I also have a blog to keep my readers up to date on what is going on with my books, their reviews, my book signings, contests, and updates of future book releases. I also am a member of many yahoo groups and love to chat it up with my fellow authors and loyal readers on a daily basis.

Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?

Getting those surprise emails from readers who’ve read and loved my work. I treasure them all and it amazes me to think that I’ve touched so many people with my stories. It’s what being an author is all about; connecting with readers on an emotional level and giving them a love story they will always remember, even after they close my book and open someone else’s.

Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped?

I’m a member of Romance Writers of America and the following RWA chapters: Kentucky Romance Writers, Ohio Valley Romance Writers, Celtic Hearts, and Hearts Through History. I’ve met some amazing authors through these groups and have established a tight bond with a select few members as well. They’ve been an amazing life line for my career and the support they provide is astounding. I highly recommend (if you are either an aspiring or published author) to find and join your genre/local chapters.

Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract?

I’ve said this from the start of my career and I’ll say it again now. Dream big—as big as you want. But keep your goals within reach. As you attain each goal you’ve set for yourself, you climb that much closer to the distant dream and eventually, you will make that dream a reality.

Another piece of advice I never forget as it came from my dear father is “You can’t do everything. But you can do anything with God at your side.”

What’s next for you?

Right now I’m finishing The Fall of Rain (Book 3 of the Emerald Isle Trilogy) and then I’ll work on The Temperate Warrior. After that, I’d like to delve into the YA genre as my daughters are very eager to read my work. I’ve got a few storylines swimming in my head and I’d really like to give my children a story that would fascinate them. We’ll see what the future brings…


Grayson Anders has it all. He’s the co-owner of a happening nightclub in downtown Boston, he’s wealthy, and women practically throw themselves at his feet the moment he steps on the dance floor. But profiting from these obvious benefits is not his desire. His passion is dancing and he wants nothing more than to find the perfect dance partner.

Chloe LaRoche is a talented artist, but a failing entrepreneur. Her once thriving studio is now on the brink of foreclosure and unless she paints the next Van Gogh Starry Night, she’ll have to cut her losses and say goodbye to her quaint little gallery. Fearing her career is at an end, she drags herself to the local hot spot, determined to drown her worries in the bottom of a shot glass. At least that was the plan…until she lays eyes on a wickedly sexy, swarthy dancer in the club—Grayson Anders.

Unable to resist, Chloe finds herself in Grayson’s arms, indulging in a passionate, out-of-control, one-night stand. And when they awaken the next morning, they are both consumed with inspiration.

Grayson finds his perfect dance partner and Chloe finally finds her muse. But, will her secret destroy both their dreams?


There he was.

Shaking his cute little ass on the dance floor of Gyrations, the hippest night club in downtown Boston, amid a flock of beautiful women.

Chloe had first noticed him, chatting with the bartender, when she entered the strobe-lit room and wandered up to the bar. Their discussion looked important since they were both hovered over a business calendar. But, once a change of song had happened, he skirted away from the conversation with a look of intent on his face—probably to score one of the many loose women who had caught his eye earlier in the night.

She couldn’t tell which one he was looking to get lucky with as there were so many dancing around him, their barely-there clothes shimmering underneath the illuminating black light, each one competing for his attention. She didn’t blame them. He was quite possibly the sexiest man she’d ever seen.

He wore sleek, black, painted-on leather pants, a tight white tank, and a have-your-fill-of-me grin on his handsome face. He was enjoying himself—that was for certain—as he moved his body to the beat of the booming bass, his hips looking as if they were dislocated from the rest of him.

Oh, he knew how to dance—quite well—and he was not afraid to show it among the many who crammed into the joint. In fact, he held many people’s attention—not just hers—as if he had a reputation to live up to. As if the status of ‘the best male dancer’ was up for grabs.

She didn’t think there was such an event going on at the crowded nightspot, but she would definitely cast her vote in his favor if there was. No one in the place could even come close to matching his abilities. His steps were graceful, his rhythm was spot on, and his lithe muscular body moved in ways she didn’t think possible. His hips entranced every female in the club, and probably infuriated every male who was left holding up the bar.

Chloe gazed around the trendy, atmospheric room and took in the many grievous faces of the men standing in random corners, drinks in hand, their attention focused. She assumed they were all either watching Casanova in hopes of learning something, or, more likely, waiting for him to make a move on their girlfriends just so they could have a reason to open a can of whup-ass and vent their jealousies.

As she glanced back at Mr. Gyration, he was now grinding against some blonde’s tight-jeaned derriere, his hands on her hips as though he was having sex with her. She noticed the bimbo’s expressive face, her lips parted and her eyes half-closed from the pleasures he was dishing out, and it was obvious the girl wished he’d get into her pants before the night was over.

Chloe sighed and looked away, tossing back a shot of Tequila, knowing the only way she was going to get ‘lucky’ tonight was if she awoke tomorrow morning without a horrendous hangover. At this point in the game, she didn’t look beyond her next shot, and let the burn of the alcohol soothe her troubled mind.

She was two drinks in and raised her hand for another.

The bartender, cool and confident, opened the broad-bottomed bottle of Patrón and leaned toward her, his weight casually resting on one elbow. “You sure ‘bout this, honey?”

Of course she was sure. She wouldn’t have ordered it to begin with had she been apprehensive about the drink’s potential. She knew well what the hard liquor could do, and since she was there for one thing and one thing only, she had high hopes it would soon help her to forget her worries and drown her stress.

She was an artist—a starving artist. If she didn’t find a way to sell more of her paintings, she was going to lose everything. Her shop. Her home. Her life.

Every little bit of her savings had gone toward the funding of her big dream. And for a while, things looked promising. Her paintings were moving out the door on a relatively regular basis. Her biggest clients had been young, wealthy doctors and lawyers who aimed to spruce up their bachelor penthouse pads with risqué nudity in an artistic form. On occasion, she had even locked in a few hairdressers who wanted the more tasteful pieces for their salons.

But those avenues had soon run dry.

Word of mouth had only gone so far, and with the changing economy, no one was willing to spend their hard-earned money on needless fine art. If she didn’t figure out a way to stimulate the public’s senses enough to open their wallets, she would have to give up her small independent business and kiss her entrepreneur life goodbye.

With a flip of her hand, she gestured for the concerned bartender to pour another shot, fixed on the goal of drinking away her problems.

“This may look like water, darlin’, and go down just as smooth, but it ain’t so easy on the body once it hits your head.” He looked her over, as if measuring her determination, and after a few seconds, he popped the cork-lined glass top. “What do I care, huh? As long as you’re paying…”

“You shouldn’t care at all, Jack, especially if I’m footing the bill. And make that two.”

Chloe looked to her left upon feeling something brush against her arm. To her surprise, it was Mr. Gyration, flipping a twenty on the bar.

Her stomach fluttered and she lost all sense of herself. Being on the receiving end of that cocky smile really did a number on her heart. As her breath staggered out of her, all she could do was smile in return.

She glanced at the crisp Jackson resting next to her shot glass, appreciative of his generosity. At least he was trying to be a gentleman, which was completely opposite of the impression he had made on her from the dance floor. She could only hope he’d continue to be that way, for she had no intention of tolerating anything less.

“You’re a pretty little thing,” he said, leaning against the bar. “A girl like you shouldn’t be anywhere alone. Especially here.”

“Easy, Don Juan,” Jack interrupted as he slammed another shot of Tequila on the slick lacquered wood of the bar. “She’s new.”

“I can see that.”

Chloe had to look away. His devilish smile was too much to handle. And even though a warning had slipped from the bartender’s lips, Mr. Gyration didn’t seem to care. He was staring at her with such hunger, she half expected him to growl like an animal if some other man-whore got too close.

In trying to rid the weight of his close presence, she reached for the alcohol, dying to douse the flaming heat of his dark, amber eyes from her memory. But his hand stopped her.

The abruptness of his actions caused the drink to slosh and splash her fingers. She barely noticed. All she could feel were his masculine fingers, curling gently around her tiny wrist and the warmth of his palm, flattened across her forearm, spreading like wildfire throughout her body. The shock of his touch nearly stopped her heart. What stunned her more, was watching him lift her hand and taking her wet finger into his mouth, sucking the small droplets of Tequila from it.

Her stomach dropped to her pelvis and a sweltering inferno raged from within her core. The only thing that kept her from incinerating right there on that barstool was the tingling sensation dispersing between her thighs. Though his tongue only swirled around her one knuckle, she could feel its torment on her whole body, a warmth spreading like fire between her legs.

She crossed them tightly, trying to get a grip on her emotions, trying to keep him from weaseling into her good sense. But the manner in which he withdrew her finger ever so slowly from his soft, full lips clouded her brain, his inviting brown eyes blurring everything around her.

No one existed, save him.

“Let’s dance first,” he suggested.

A little bit about the author

Renee Vincent is an author with a passionate interest in Irish and Norse history. She lives in the rolling hills of Kentucky with her husband and two children on a beautiful secluded farm of horses and hay fields.

How can my readers buy your book?

Readers can go to the publisher’s home page at

My books are also available in both ebook and print formats at:

1Place For Romance
Digi Books
Joseph Beth
Coffee Time Romance
Turquoise Morning Press
Book Strand

Don't forget to leave a comment for a chance to win big prizes from Renee. You can follow her on her blog tour. For a list of dates and places, go to her web site at for more details.

You can find more information about Renee Vincent and my book, Silent Partner by visiting my website,  or my blog at

Friday, April 22, 2011

I'm guest blogging today

Today I am over at History Undressed blogging about the History of the Quaich. If you aren't sure what that is, then come on over and see!

HINT- it's something Scottish!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Totally HOT Thursdays

I have to tell you that the research for this particular post is always fun! ; ) I had a gentleman picked out for today and was scrolling through Facebook, when I cam across Author Donna Grant's post. When I saw this fellow, I knew i had to post him right away. He is amazing. A feast for the eyes. So, I will not take anymore of your time and introduce you to JASON MOMOA.

Jason was born in Honolulu on 8-1-1979 but eventually move to Iowa. His given name is Joseph Jason Namakahea Momoa. He is an avid rock climber and ice climber. He enjoys roller hockey and long board skateboarding.
Here is Jason starring as Conan.
Another shot of his role in Conan.
When he isn't modeling or acting, Jason promotes hunger awareness by working at the Hawaii Food bank and speaking to school students.

Jason has stunning green eyes. But I am sure that is not what you are looking at here!
He just seems to draw you in, doesn't he?

I hope you had as much fun gazing at this very handsome man as I did. Be sure to check him out on the TV series Stargate: Atlantis and the new series Game of Thrones.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Interview with Author, DANIELLE MONSCH

I have the privilege of introducing you to a brand new author. It is so exciting to hear that someone has made their dream come true. I am so excited for Danielle and I hope that you will all enjoy her interview and please, leave her a comment.

Danielle Monsch
Thanks to Sarah for hosting me!

When I asked Sarah what she would like me to write about, she said, “Well, you’re a debut author, talk about your struggle to get published.”

Ummm…my journey thus far hasn’t exactly been a struggle though.

It’s been time consuming, certainly. Even epubs take a few months to get back to you about submissions. Every morning there is that split second thought in your head wondering if today is the day you’ll hear back about your story, followed by that split second disappointment that nothing is there.

It’s been informative without a doubt. I’ve only been actively working to get published for a little over a year. I realized that while I had some natural talent towards writing and a few areas I was strong in, there was plenty I needed to learn to get my writing up to par. Working on Loving a Fairy Godmother has helped me see both the strengths and weaknesses in my writing, and how I want to keep improving for the future.

I wrote Loving a Fairy Godmother almost as a lark. Now, that kinda sounds bad, as though I didn’t take the story seriously, but that’s not the case at all.

There was an open submission call at an epub for stories somehow related to Fairy Tales for an anthology. I was inspired to write this story, and with the help of my crit partner, whipped it into shape. Before writing this story, I never wrote a story specifically to be published with an epub, so Loving a Fairy Godmother is my first foray into this new world.

It didn’t get picked up, but I have reason to believe it was one of the finalists. Yes, I was disappointed that it wasn’t ultimately chosen, but what I did get was amazing – the very first story I wrote was almost chosen, and the editor wrote me and told me she liked my voice and wanted me to email her directly any time I had another story to submit. Even without being chosen, I was happy dancing.

I submitted to a second editor who asked to see the story. She rejected me, but not before giving me very specific feedback. What I learned from her was to not treat my story as sacred, that just because I put something down one way, it didn’t have to stay that way. What she said didn’t work I agreed with, but I had been so used to seeing it in the story, I didn’t think to redo it. Again, the story wasn’t chosen, but I learned so much from that rejection that it was well worth it.

I redid the story and submitted it Liquid Silver. And after a couple months of waiting, it was accepted.

So you see, no struggle. It’s really been nothing but positive experiences.

Now, I have no doubt the struggle part is ahead of me – I haven’t dipped my toes into the world of Agents and Print yet, but I do plan to once my full length novel is completed. I still feel I have a lot of learning to do, and am still actively taking classes and learning techniques, and teaching an old dog like me new tricks is sometimes tough.

What I have now though is nothing but happiness. A lifelong dream of seeing my name on my story has been realized. I’ve even gotten my first review, someone posting on my Facebook that that they read the story and loved it. That is what I’ve been working for, and the happiness I’m feeling now will certainly help me through the coming days when the real struggles to get published will begin.

Danielle is celebrating the release of her debut book Loving a Fairy Godmother by giving a free copy to one commenter. You can find Danielle on the web at any of the following locations:

Loving a Fairy Godmother available at Liquid Silver books:


Tiernan is one of a kind. Beyond the divine dimples, killer blue eyes, and hard muscled body, Tiernan is also the only Fairy Godfather. Most of the Fairy Godmothers have no problem with keeping Tiernan around, but Reina isn’t like most Fairy Godmothers.

Amongst Fairy Godmothers, Reina is the best. Organized, efficient, logical. So why is it when Tiernan is around, all those qualities fly out the window? Reina doesn’t like that one infuriating male makes her lose control, and just wants him gone. Circumstances arise that just might let her get her wish, though not in a way she ever wanted.

Tiernan is given an assignment and told either get a Happily Ever After or he will no longer be a Fairy Godfather. Reina is going with him to supervise, but if Tiernan gets his way, he’ll not only be supervising that luscious stubborn fairy in bed, but also get her to admit Happily Ever Afters also apply to Fairy Godmothers.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Golden Claddaugh Contest is open!!

Enter Celtic Hearts Romance Writers Chapter contest The Golden Claddaugh! Don’t let our chapter name dissuade you, your entry does not have to be Celtic based to enter, unless you enter our Celtic Category. We have six categories, Historical, FF & P, Romantic Suspense, Celtic, Contemporary & Erotic Romance.

Our contest due date is May 5th, 2011. Finalists will be notified by July 1, 2011 and winners notified by September 1, 2011.


The competition is open to RWA members and non-members who have not accepted a publishing offer from a non-Subsidy, non-Vanity Publisher (self-published) for fiction in the past five years of 20,000 words or more. Entry must be a full-length novel, no novellas or short stories. Manuscripts must be completed. If a final judge asks for a full, you’ll want to be able to send it out immediately. Entrant must retain all rights to the entry and not have granted any of them to a publisher or any other party by the contest entry deadline. If your manuscript is accepted for publication during the time of our contest (dates will be specified) you must notify the contest coordinator; your submission(s) will be withdrawn from consideration and your entry fee(s) returned.

Please Note:

•Previously entered manuscripts may be entered again, but no previous winning manuscript shall be re-entered, even if revised.

•You may submit multiple entries so long as you pay an entry fee and submit a completed entry form for each submission.

•You may not enter the same manuscript in more than one category. *Entry fee per entry: $20.00 CHRW member and $25.00 non-member.

Entries are 30 pages maximum with a synopsis no longer than 5 pages, for a total of 35 pages max. All entries are electronic. Entry fee is $20 for CHRW members and $25 for non-members.

How To Enter

Entries should be submitted to Althea Preston–

CHRW reserves the right to discard all electronic entries and return fees if a minimum number of three (3) entries is not received in any category. Entrants will be contacted before the entries are returned and given the option to place their entry in another category. We may also refuse an entry that does not follow the rules stated here in the guidelines.

Pay by Check

Please copy or print this form and include with your payment: Contest Entry Form

Mail to:

CHRW Treasurer

c/o Rebecca Syme

4022 Rain Roper Dr.

Bozeman, MT 59715

Pay by Paypal

If paying via Paypal, please click here: Contest Entry Form

You will have the option at the end of the form

to choose Paypal

Paypal address:

All entries will be read and scored for the first round by two trained judges and one published author, and the lowest score dropped. The three entries with the highest total scores in each category will move to the final round. An editor/agent will judge the final round and select a winner from the finalists in each category.


Future, Fantasy & Paranormal: Romance novel where the mains focus is on the romantic relationship, but the future, fantasy or paranormal elements are integral to the story (includes time-travel).

Contemporary: Includes, single title, long and short romantic fiction with a contemporary setting set after 1945. Main focus is the romantic relationship between the hero and heroine.

Romantic Suspense: Romance novels in which suspense, mystery, or thriller elements constitute an integral part of the plot. Main focus is still on the romantic relationship between the hero and heroine.

Historical: Romance novel set primarily before 1945 -- any location.

Celtic – Romantic fiction set in any time period and in any location, but MUST have a Celtic theme (Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Cornish, Bretons, Isle of Man). Please specify your time period and setting in your entry.

Erotic Romance: any genre or time period, erotic romance submission only - no straight erotica - this means there must be a HEA ending or at least a Happy For Now.


Final Round Judges

To Be Announced

Entry Composition

Your entry must have the following:

1.A separate cover page which includes the author's real name, address, telephone number(s), e-mail address, submission title, category and manuscript word count should be submitted in text of the e-mail. Do not include the cover page in the same attachment as your manuscript and synopsis. The manuscript and synopsis will be sent together as one document as an attachment.

2.The beginning of your manuscript, including prologue, cannot exceed thirty (30) pages. Standard manuscript format must be followed: 1 inch margins, double spaced in a standard font and size that gives 24-26 lines per page. We will not accept entries that have colored, or designer fonts. DO NOT INCLUDE YOUR NAME ON THE MANUSCRIPT. See ENTRY FORMAT.

3.The synopsis must be included with the same file attachment as the manuscript, must be double spaced and is not to exceed five (5) pages. Do not send the synopsis in a separate attachment. Whether the synopsis is at the beginning or the end of your entry, it should start and end as though it were separate from your manuscript. Any entry that contains a single spaced synopsis and/or begins or ends on the same page as the manuscript will be refused and sent back for correction. The synopsis will be scored.

NOTE: Your entry, which includes the synopsis must not exceed thirty- five (35) pages total. ANY MANUSCRIPT, OR SYNOPSIS THAT DOES NOT FOLLOW THE RULES SET DOWN HERE WILL BE REFUSED AND YOUR ENTRY WILL BE RETURNED SO THAT YOU CAN CORRECT IT. However, our deadline still stands; corrected manuscripts will need to be returned by the midnight deadline on May 5, 2011 to be valid. (should the contest deadline be extended, you will have until that extended date to return your ms, but only if the contest deadline for entries is extended)

Entry Format: Standard manuscript and synopsis format, double-spaced, 12-point readable font, twenty-six (26) lines maximum per page, minimum 1" margins all around. Only the TITLE of the manuscript, the category, and any subcategory should be placed on the top left hand side of the entry. The PAGE NUMBER should be on the top right hand side. IF THE NAME OF THE AUTHOR(S) APPEARS ANYWHERE ON THE MANUSCRIPT OR SYNOPSIS, THE ENTRY WILL BE DISQUALIFIED AND THE ENTRY FEE WILL NOT BE RETURNED.

Important: Manuscript and synopsis must be in a .doc or .rtf file.


The FIRST PLACE winner in each category will receive a golden Claddaugh pin.

The SECOND PLACE winner in each category will receive a silver Claddaugh pin.

The THIRD PLACE winner in each category will receive a bronze Claddaugh pin.

All winners will receive certificates and icons to place on their websites.


For questions please contact the contest chair, Althea Preston at:

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Totally HOT Thursdays

I have wanted to post this hunk of a beautiful man for a long time. For some reason, the little devil gave me a run for my money.

Well. I came and I conquered. Yes, I did. I have enjoyed purusing his galleries. A secret smile on my lips as I ponder which photos to use. So, here we go.

I bring you, GABRIEL AUBRY!

Gabriel was born in Montreal Canada on August 30,1976. He is one of nine siblings. Gabriel has one daughter with actress Halle Berry and owns his own restaurant called Cafe Fuego.

All pictures are from and
There is something about a pin stripe suit....

A look like that will make a woman say yes!

It's all in the jeans (genes)!

If he looks like this, imgine what the other 8 siblings look like!

Sorry ladies, the man models clothes. I know, just a little skin please!!

There's a start!

I hope you enjoyed today's Totally HOT Thursday as much as I did!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Bid and win a critique by an agent

Crits for Water is auctioning critiques by Marissa Iozzi Corvisiero at 12:00 am and 9:00 am on April 12; and at 9:00 am on April 13 EST.

Crits for Water

I hope you will go and bid. It's a win-win situation! And who wouldn't want to win a critque by Mrs. Corvisiero? I know I would.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Is it fate?

I told a story the other day at work about the birth of my middle child, my son. My sister-in-law and I were pregnant together. Come January 7, 1998, I went into the hospital in labor. I was 7 days late. After visiting me, my brother and his wife went home, only to come back to the hospital. She was in labor and she was 7 days early. I gave birth that day to my son. 7 hours and 16 mins. later, my sister-in-law gave birth to a son. They were born on my sister Beth's birthday. Also, there are 7 people in our family with 7 in their birthdays.

Was this fate?

I like to think that because of all of the 7's surrounding their birth, that there is something special in store for them. 7 is a special number. You find it mentioned in the Bible and in the Native American lore, 7 is lucky.

We should have bought a lucky 7 lottery ticket the night the boys were born, but didn't think of it then. On their 7th birthday, my sister-in-law and I went at 7 pm to buy a lucky 7 lottery ticket, but we didn't win anything. Oh well.

These are things we can never foretell in our futures. Some believe in fate and some think that we make our own destinies. I think there is a little bit of both. You never know what life has in store but what we do with it is up to us.

When we are writing, we create the fate that lands upon our characters. It is up to us to decide what happens to our characters and how they will handle it.

Are the H/H fated for each other? Is it in the stars for the hero to become a knight when he is not of a royal line? If a heroine travels back in time, is that her fate or is she just in the wrong place at the wrong time?

I think people want to believe in fate. To believe that there is a bigger plan in the world that will affect our lives.

What do you think? Do you believe in fate?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Totally HOT Thursdays

Today's Totally HOT Thursday is bringing you STEPHEN BAMBER. Enjoy! 

Stephen is 25 and from Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.  Here are his stats:

Height: 6'2"
Weight: 175 lbs.
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Blue

Photo by

Photo by

Photo by Greg Vaughn

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Interview with Author TERRI BRISBIN

I am so excited to bring to you an amazing author of historical romances.

I remember standing in my library, searching through the endless rows of books, trying to find something good to read.

I tilted my head to the side to read the name- TERRI BRISBIN. When I pulled the book out, Surrender To The Highlander, the cover snagged me. When I read the pages in side, her writing hooked me and I have been a follower ever since.

I hope you will enjoy this interview and please, if you have never read one of her books, I encourage you to do so!


Today I’m interviewing Terri Brisbin. Her book, HIS ENEMY’S DAUGHTER is a historical romance from Harlequin and was released on March 1st.

Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.

This is the final book in my Knights trilogy and the three books all tell the stories about three illegitimate knights and one noble one who were raised together and then fight for William the Conqueror in his conquest of England in order to gain lands, titles, wealth and…wives! Sent to gain control over the most dangerous lands in William’s new kingdom, they must first survive long enough to find success and love.

Soren Fitzrobert, ‘the Beautiful Bastard’, had been left for dead after the Battle of Hastings and survived by on the need for vengeance against the man who destroyed all that he was. When only his enemy’s daughter remains alive, becomes his target.

Sybilla of Alston has lost all—her family, her home and now her eyesight as her father’s enemy captures her keep and her. She never dreamt that such a scarred man could tempt her mind, her body and her soul. As war ends, can they each find the person they should become or remain victims of their past?

Describe the genre of this particular title, and is the only genre you write in?

This is a historical romance. I also write historicals with paranormal elements for Kensington Brava.

When did you start writing toward publication?

Although I’ve always written something, I began to write with an eye to getting published in the mid-1990s. That’s when I realized I had ideas for romances, so I began to network with other romance writers to learn more about the industry and the market.

Did you have several manuscripts finished before you sold? If so, did you send them out yourself?

My first published novel was actually only my second completed manuscript, so I was lucky! I did send out my first and second manuscripts to editors I’d met at a romance writers’ conference and had been gathering information about agents when I got the offer from Berkley for my first time travel novel! I hired an agent because I believe that a published author, looking at this as a career, should have an agent as her/his business consultant and representative.

Why have you become a published author?

Well, I sought publication for my work because I wanted to share my stories with others AND to make money from my work. That’s really what being a professional writer is about – making money by reaching an audience with your work.

Do you have any rejection stories to share?

I did get a rejection on that first-sale manuscript the month after it was published! I’d sent out a proposal to a number of editors when I first started with it and this particular editor rejected it almost 30 months later…when the book had just hit the shelves! So, that one didn’t sting as much as the others.

One word of warning to potential published authors out there – I’ve received far more rejections on my work SINCE I got published than before I did. And when I went searching for a new agent, I was rejected by more than 20 agents in a two-year period. Getting published is only the first step—staying published is sometimes and in some ways the more difficult part of this business!

What is your writing routine like?

Routine? Um….I don’t have a routine. I don’t write daily, unless massive amounts of emails count. I am a deadline-binge writer who can write huge amounts of words and pages when I have a deadline. As it gets closer, I write faster and more. Usually it takes me months to write the first 100-150 pages and then I write the rest in the week-two weeks prior to my deadline.

It’s not pretty! I don’t recommend it to others, but it’s how I create and produce my work. Deadline=production for me.

But, I am highly-distractible so anything new or shiny grabs my attention, especially new ideas for new stories, so staying on task during those binges-o-writing is difficult, too!

What sort of promo do you do? Do you have help?

I do lots of different things – I have a website, I blog a couple times a month (more during release months), I do book signings and events, I speak at conferences and meetings, I send out an email-newsletter, run website contests and a pay for some promotions on/by internet romance communities.

Other than a wonderful webdesigner, I don’t have help…which is why I’m usually late in sending out blog/chat/web prizes!

Something else I’m trying is releasing a previously-unavailable-in-digital story to use as a sample of my work—I’ve put KIDNAPPING THE LAIRD, a fun, sexy, short, historical, Scottish story published in print in the MAMMOTH BOOK OF SCOTTISH ROMANCE up for sale in digital formats at Amazon, B&N, iBooks, Sony, Kobo and Diesel ebooks. It’s doing very well so far!

Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?

Actually, the most rewarding this about being published is hearing from or meeting readers who have read and enjoyed my work. When I meet with readers’ groups and they know my stories and my characters, it is such a thrill!

Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped ?

I belong to several writing organizations – Romance Writers of America, several chapters of RWA including my ‘home’ chapter of NJRW, and Novelists Inc., along with a number of research groups and general writing groups, too.

I credit NJRW and its members with teaching me most of what I needed to know to get my book into the hands of someone who would and could publish it. I joined in 1995, before the explosion of information on the internet, and learned more in five minutes of chatting with published authors at that first meeting than I had in months of my own research! Those authors were so open and informative and helpful, they really did help me. And they supported me through the dark times of rejections as well as celebrated with me during the high points.

Now, years later, I look for different things from organizations than I did before publication, so groups like Novelists, Inc. are a big help and a wonderful resource.

Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract?

Well, I would remind writers that writing for commercial success and writing for personal validation (so they can be called ‘published’) are not always the same thing. Writers need to have career goals and do what they need to do to attain those goals. Writers seeking commercial success need to remember that this is a BUSINESS and need to make business decisions about their creative product – not an easy concept to accept or practice!

But, really, writers need to be writing and reading. Focus on creating something worth publishing, learn your craft, learn it better, and write more. Don’t be worrying over how you’ll promote your writing UNTIL you actually have something written and close to selling. The writing is really the only part of this business we can control, so never let it be second or third on your list of priorities or your to-do list!

And most of all, remember that everything we write is moving us forward in our writing skills. If a project isn’t getting you that contract, move on and write something else. I’ve realized that my first manuscript didn’t sell for good reasons and I know that each project I complete makes me a better writer.

What’s next for you?

My next release is a short digital-only story that’s part of an upcoming Royal Wedding celebration from Harlequin. WHAT THE DUCHESS WANTS is an April 1st release from Harlequin Historicals/Harlequin Mills&Boon online.

Then the last of my STORM trilogy will be out in July from Kensington Brava. MISTRESS OF THE STORM, will be available in trade and digital on June 28th. It’s a great story and brings the three stories to a wonderful conclusion!

I’m working on a new series for Harlequin Historicals – I’ve gone back to my popular HIGHLANDER stories and am writing about their children, now grown and falling in love. I don’t have release dates or titles, but I think the first one (due in June) will be out sometime early 2012 with a Harlequin Historical UNDONE short story to introduce it a month prior.

Thanks so much for inviting me to talk about myself and my writing! I hope readers will stop by my website – – for more info about everything and to see my upcoming releases, beautiful covers and event info. Thanks Sarah!


A warrior’s rebellion

Once overwhelmingly irresistible to women, Soren Fitzrobert’s life was changed forever by a brutal wound. Now Soren has come to wreak revenge by claiming his enemy’s daughter.

A fierce retribution

Left temporarily blind by his invasion, innocent Sybilla trembles before the scarred barbarian. But it’s not entirely out of fear....

A sensuous redemption?

Forced into marriage, Sybilla must surrender to Soren’s seduction, one sense at a time. And Soren is drawn evermore to the woman he intended only to use....

The Knights of Brittany

Born to conquer...and seduce!

A little bit about the author:

Terri Brisbin has been writing romance fiction since 1995 and has more than 25 historical and paranormal romance novels, novellas and short stories published since then. When not living the glamorous life of a romance author in the southern NJ suburbs (or pining over Gerard Butler), Terri spends her time being a wife to one, mom to three as well as a dental hygienist to hundreds.

A National Readers’ Choice Award finalist, three-time RWA RITA® finalist, and winner of the NJRW Golden Leaf and Desert Rose Golden Quill, Terri is now working on more romance novels and novellas for release through 2012 from Harlequin Historical and Kensington Brava. You can visit her website for more info about the author and her work or to contact her:

How can my readers buy your book?

Readers can go to my book page on my website for links to purchase any of my books through various online and physical booksellers:

You can find more information about everything Terri Brisbin by visiting my website:

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A beautiful day!

I started my day today early. I had to open the store and 7:30 came around early. We were busy as usual, but things went smoothly and we had a good time.

So peaceful!
 When I came home, I had a GREAT day! Spring is in bloom. It was 75 degrees out but quite windy. My niece and her family came over. Andy took Barry and all of the kids to the woods with his metal detector. Didn't really find anything but junk, but the trek through the woods was fun. Brookney and I joined them later. To walk along with the trees dancing in the wind, moldy earth crunching beneath our feet, let's just say I am ready for this weather. We stood next to the stream talking and watched out husbands and kids having a great time.

A fun Sunday afternoon activity.
When we went back to the house, the men put pork chops on the grill and we took care of the rest of the food inside. Our kids played Uno at my dining room table. Curtains blew as the smell of dinner cooking was carried in through the window on a warm breeze. And when we were done with dinner, everyone headed outside to play football.

Now I sit here this evening with the front door open, Country Music Awards on the television, and the dog laying at my feet. I just sent my kids to bed with a kiss and my dear husband is laying beside me on the couch. Life is good! It's peaceful and in this very moment as I write this to you, it is absolutely PERFECT!  Days like today make those moments where life goes crazy, seem insignificant.

My hope is that you had a day like this too. I hope that at some point this weekend you were sitting somewhere thinking, It doesn't get any better than this!  Because between you and doesn't.

Friday, April 1, 2011


Celtic Hearts Romance Writers has put up their list of up coming workshops. I have chosen two to show you and they are listed below. For a more detailed list of classes, please go to Celtic Hearts and click on workshops. Cost is $15 if you are a CHRW member and $20 if not a member.

April 2011 2 weeks April 1st thru 16th)

Class #1: Sieze the Reader: Write compelling openings that don't let go!

Instructor: Anthea Lawson

You have one sentence. One paragraph. A page if you're lucky. Make the most of your chance to grab the reader, whether they're an agent, editor, or bookstore browser. Learn how to escape the most common pitfalls and pull the reader into your story.

Drawing on years of experience giving workshops, as well has her insights as a contest judge and critiquer, RITA-nominated author Anthea Lawson will lead this two-week workshop. We'll look at examples of novel openings, dissect what works (and what doesn't), and explore common problems writers have with their beginnings. This is a hands-on workshop with lessons posted every-other-day. Questions and comments encouraged!

Instructor Bio:

RITA-nominated author Anthea Lawson is a dynamic, engaging instructor. She has presented workshops at the Emerald City Writer's Conference, been the featured speaker for RWA chapters throughout the NW, and has taught online for Hearts Through History and East Valley RWA. Anthea is a teacher by both trade and inclination -- her day jobs have included client education for a large-scale coffee roaster, and a sought-after fiddle instructor for both kids and adults. She brings enthusiasm and a deft touch to her teaching, invariably giving students "lightbulb" moments as they participate in her engaging workshops.


April 2011 (4 week version April 18th thru May 13th)
Class #2: Pitch Like a Pro for Writers (includes Editor pitch session*)

Instructor: Kerri Nelson

Want to practice your pitch for an upcoming pitch session to an agent or editor? Need help refining your pitch to include in a query letter? Well, practice makes perfect!

Sign on for this handy four week pitch practice workshop, taught by multi-published romantic suspense author, Kerri Nelson.

*During class you'll get to practice pitches for up to 2 different novels AND at the end of class you'll have the opportunity to pitch before a real acquiring EDITOR from a major publisher!*

Over the past five years, Kerri has pitched more than thirty different books in every imaginable genre (from erotica to young adult) to multiple agents and editors with a tremendous success rate for follow-up requests for both partial and full manuscripts. She has sold fourteen novels and novellas in the last eighteen months after perfecting her pitch process!

In this intensive interactive course, Kerri offers up the secrets to nailing your pitch, how to score a home run with editors, and how not to stop short of getting the results you want!

Start the year off right with the book contract you've been waiting for!

Students from prior classes have sold 3 book deals to Sourcebooks, been offered representation by agents, and many other successes after perfecting their pitch with me.

Instructor Bio:

Kerri Nelson has always been passionate about reading books but when she wrote her first poem in the second grade, she discovered her love of writing. At the age of sixteen, she became a columnist for her local newspaper as the high school correspondent for the weekly "Panther Tales" column. She won the Outstanding Young Journalist of the Year Award for her efforts.

After an education and career in the legal field, Kerri began to pen romantic suspense novels with a legal or law enforcement theme. She currently lives in the sunny south with her romance inspiring husband and her adorable children. When she's not reading or writing, you'll find her baking homemade goodies for her family. Kerri is an active member of Romance Writers of America, Hearts Through History Romance Writers, Celtic Hearts Romance Writers, and Futuristic Fantasy & Paranormal Romance Writers.

In addition, Kerri has been contracted to publish fourteen books with six different publishers in multiple genres. She continues to pitch both live and online to agents and editors on a monthly basis and has received requests for nearly one hundred percent of her pitches! Check out her website at: