Monday, April 7, 2014

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR     Dawn Marie Hamilton                          

Today I’m interviewing Dawn Marie Hamilton. Her book, Sea Panther is a paranormal romance and was released on March 18.

Thank you, Sarah, for the interview and inviting me to your blog today.

Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.  
Sea Panther is a vampire shifter story, where Robert, the 300 year old hero, is tortured by the two beasts living within—vampire and Florida panther--yet strives to maintain honor above all else. Kimberly, the heroine, has lost everything that defines her life. She takes a crew position on Robert’s sailing yacht to escape a hit man. The attraction between the two is immediate but heartbreaking when Robert’s past stalks them both. Much to overcome, including a trip through the Bermuda triangle to the past, before they can find their happily-ever-after.

Describe the genre of this particular title, and is it the only genre you write in?
I write Scottish inspired fantasy and paranormal romance. Sea Panther is the first book in the Crimson Storm series of genre-bending paranormal romances with vampires and shifters and a wee bit of time travel just for fun. My other series, Highland Gardens, are Scottish historical time travel romances with faeries. I like to stretch genre lines.

How did this story come to be?  
Sea Panther was supposed to be a vampire pirate romance. The hero, Robert, balked. He didn’t want to be a pirate. While researching a Scottish connection for the story, I stumbled across a bit of history about Lord Archibald Hamilton, governor of Jamaica (1711-1716), having Jacobite sympathies and gathering a group of warships and captains to create a Jacobite navy to help put James Stuart on the British throne. So Robert became a privateer, later cursed by a Voodoo priestess to become a vampire. Then while vacationing in Florida, I saw a panther crossing sign, and thought, wouldn’t it be cool if Robert was a vampire that shifted into a Florida panther. The story was on a roll after that.

What is your writing routine like?
I don’t really have a set routine. I write whenever the muse has something to say and I can squeeze in writing time. Although I would like to be more disciplined, I’m not real good with structure. Sometimes, I get up in the middle of the night and write because the muse won’t be quiet. Other times, I write early in the morning or late in the afternoon.

Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped?
I’m a member of Romance Writers of America, Celtic Hearts Romance Writers, From the Heart Romance Writers, Fantasy Futuristic and Paranormal, and the Golden Network. Belonging to these wonderful organizations is invaluable.

What character is most like you or least like you?
Hmmm. I imagine a little bit of me is in all my characters, but I can’t say that any one in particular is like me. Thus, they are equally least like me.

What most inspires you in life?
People with positive attitudes, no matter what.

What’s next for you?
I’m currently writing the third novel and a holiday novella for the Highland Gardens series. When those are complete, I will begin work on Raven’s Revenge, the second novel in the Crimson Storm series.


Can love mend a fractured soul?

After evading arrest for Jacobite activities, Scottish nobleman Robert MacLachlan turns privateer. A Caribbean Voodoo priestess curses him to an eternal existence as a vampire shifter torn between the dual natures of a Florida panther and an immortal blood-thirsting man. For centuries, he seeks to reverse the black magic whilst maintaining his honor. Cruising the twenty-first century Atlantic, he becomes shorthanded to sail his 90-foot yacht, Sea Panther. The last thing he wants is a female crewmember and the call of her blood.

Although she swore never to sail again after her father died in a sailing accident, Kimberly Scot answers the captain's crew wanted ad to escape a hit man. She's lost everything, her fiancĂ©, her job, and most of her money, along with money belonging to her ex-clients. A taste of Kimberly's blood convinces Robert she is the one woman who can claim the panther's heart. To break the curse, they travel back in time to where it all began—Jamaica 1715.

A little bit about the author 

Dawn Marie Hamilton dares you to dream. She is a 2013 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist who pens Scottish-inspired fantasy and paranormal romance. Some of her tales are rife with mischief-making faeries, brownies, and other fae creatures. More tormented souls—shape shifters, vampires, and maybe a zombie or two—stalk across the pages of other stories. She is a member of The Golden Network, Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal, Celtic Hearts, and From the Heart chapters of RWA. When not writing, she’s cooking, gardening, or paddling the local creeks of Southern Maryland with her husband.


A drunk banged into the table and broke the steamy spell holding Kimberly and Robert enthralled. She choked on a flat laugh. He cleared his throat.

The awkward moment thickened the air. Made it hard to breathe.

Kimberly twitched her nose. Now would be a good time to find a hidey-hole to crawl into. Perspiration glazed the skin between her breasts. God, her face must be the color of a ripe strawberry.

“I overheard you,” Robert said.

“Did you?” Just great.

“Aye.” His gaze dropped to the tabletop. He picked up a drink stirrer and fiddled with it.

Mesmerized, she watched large fingers nimbly tie the thin strip of plastic into a bowline knot. The naughty image of him using the same knot to tie a silk scarf around her wrists flashed in her mind. Where had that idea come from?

“What the rest of the crew has been trying hard not to tell you is I have a rare blood disease.” Her wayward thought splintered at the unemotional statement of fact.

She gazed into his eyes, searching for something empathetic to say.

“I have to take it easy until my doctors can find a donor with the right DNA makeup to help me. That is why I sleep a lot.”

“I’m sorry.” Oh, that sounded lame. Worse yet, she’d been thinking about sex. Kinky sex. My God, what had come over her lately? She’d never thought of having that kind of sex with Jason. Heat rose from toes to face. Thank God Robert couldn’t read minds. She reached for her mug, but it was empty.

“Dance with me?” He grasped her hand.

She nodded, and followed him onto the dance floor. “When they find a donor, will they be able to make you well?”

His eyes clouded. “I hope so.”

So did she.

He tucked her close, held her tight, smooth cheek against the rasp of whiskers, as they swayed with the other couples to the sweet melody of an Irish love song. She embraced hard muscle as she wrapped her arms around him.

How could a virile man like Robert be critically ill?

How can my readers buy your book?  
Readers can go to Amazon at or Barnes and Noble at

You can find more information about Dawn Marie Hamilton and my book, Sea Panther by visiting my blog at .

Just a few fun questions to answer if you don’t mind.

1)      Hotel room or Tent? Tent
2)      What is your favorite thing to eat? Salmon, it’s a feline thing.
3)      What is your favorite New Year tradition? Hiking with husband on New Year’s day.
4)      Who is your favorite author to read? J R Ward
5)      What’s your favorite movie? Somewhere in Time
6)      If you were given only one Christmas present but it could be anything in the world, what would you choose? A month in Scotland.
7)      What’s your favorite color? Peridot
8)      Mountains or Beach? Mountains
9)      What’s your favorite flavor of Starburst? Lemon
10)  What is your favorite thing to drink? Pinot Noir

Thank you for allowing me to interview you here at Heart of Romance. Good luck to you in your future!!!

**Dawn will be giving away an e-book copy to one lucky commenter.**

Thursday, April 3, 2014


The Golden Claddagh is officially opened and we look forward to you submitting your excellent entries. It's $10 for CHRW members and $15 for all other RWA members. 

Below are the guidelines and rules for submission entry. Please feel free to forward to your respective loops. Thank you! 


Enter Celtic Hearts Romance Writers Chapter contest The Golden Claddagh!
We have four categories for unpublished authors and published authors withunpublished  manuscripts.
* Historical
* Fantasy-Futuristic-Paranormal
* Contemporary
* Young Adult/New Adult
Our contest due date is May 10th. Finalists will be notified by June 15th and winners notified by August 1st–Winners will be announced at the CHRW Annual General Meeting at RWA National Convention in San Antonio, TX in July 2014.
The competition is open to RWA members ONLY.
Manuscripts must be unpublished and un-contracted in any form, including self-publishing. The manuscript rights must belong to the author and be available to contract, should a final judge wish to offer publication.
The GC entry must be a full-length novel (more than 40K). Novellas or Short stories will not be accepted.
Manuscripts must be completed by the time results are returned. 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: $10.00 CHRW members and $15.00 non-member CHRWA members.
CHRW reserves the right to discard all electronic entries and return fees if a minimum number of three (3) entries are 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 if it is eligible. We may also refuse an entry that does not follow the rules stated here in the guidelines.
All Payments are Electronic through PayPal. The easy link is here:
If you wish to go directly to PayPal, please use Paypal address:
Entry fee: $10.00 CHRW members and $15.00 non-member CHRWA members.
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.
Historical: Romance novel set primarily before 1945 — any location. Please specify your time period and setting in your entry.
Young Adult/New Adult:  Romance novels in which young adult or new adult themes constitute an integral part of the plot. *Romance subplot not required*

Entry Composition: No Synopsis required! Your entry must have the following:
1.     An email “cover page” which includes the author’s real name, address, telephone number(s), e-mail address, submission title, category, manuscript word count and PayPal confirmation # should be submitted in text of the e-mail. Do not include the cover page in the same attachment as your manuscript.
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 12-point.
  • 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 side of the entry.
  • We will not accept entries that have colored, or designer fonts. DO NOT INCLUDE YOUR NAME ON THE MANUSCRIPT.
3. Manuscript must be in a .doc or .rtf file format.
NOTE: Your entry must not exceed thirty (30) pages total.

Contemporary Category -
FFP Category -
Historical Category -
Young Adult/New Adult Category -

Final Round Judges
Angela James – Carina Press
Kerry Buckley – Carina Press
Laurie McLean – Forward Literary, Inc
Beth Miller – Writers House
Leis Pederson – Berkley Publishing
Julie Mianecki – Penguin Books
Alissa Davis – Carina Press
Elizabeth Bistrow – Penguin Books
Young Adult/New Adult
Nicole Fischer – Avon Press

The FIRST PLACE winners in each category will receive a $50 dollar cash prize and a commemorative pin.
The SECOND and THIRD PLACE winners in each category will receive free workshops through Celtic Hearts Romance Writers.

For questions please contact the contest chair, Alisa Walker at: