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Talk to me Tuesday with Carrie Ann Ryan

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Welcome back to Talk to me Tuesday! This week, we have a special guest. Carrie Ann Ryan is one of my favorites and I totally fan girled when I met her at RT last year. I was actually at a loss for words (and I am never at a loss for words!) She was so sweet in person, and her books are hot hot hot. Her heroes range from shifters to hot bad boys and I love them all!

How did you become an author? What inspired you to begin writing?

I had so many stories in my head that I knew I needed to get them out. I wanted to see if I COULD write and once I found my groove, I couldn’t stop.

Why the romance genre?

Romance is life. It’s daring. It’s complicated. It’s something that you live and yet you have to fight for. I love the genre because I can go into a million directions, but in the end, through the pain I can find that happiness—even if it was daring.

What do you like to do in your spare time (if you have any)?

I read! LOL My husband and I also do a special baking treat every weekend. We try something new—most of it from the Great British Bake Off!

Are you a full-time author? Or do you have another job on top of writing?

I’m blessed that I get to write full time! Though I work far more than I did when I was teaching chemistry. I think my 50+ hour work weeks are getting logner!

What is the favorite thing that you’ve written?

I never have a favorite but I do have books I’m particularly proud of. My latest release, Passion Restored, is one of them.

What authors inspire your writing?

So many! Nalini Singh is one of my favorite authors and her world building is exquisite.

Do you have a dream project?

I’d love to write a stand-alone romantic suspense! Hmm….

Do you have any advice to new authors? What do you wish someone had told you when you started as an author?

Write. Sit down and finish the book. Read what you love. Read what you want to write. Know the rules so you can break them.

Just don’t break the one rule of romance: HEAS FOR LIFE

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ABOUT PASSION RESTORED

 

The Gallagher Brothers series from NYT Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan continues with the one brother who thinks he can handle it all and the one woman who could change that.

Owen Gallagher likes everything in its place and is organized to a fault. While his brothers have each dealt with their own personal tragedies and stresses, Owen figures he’s had it pretty easy. That is until his perfectly ordered world is rocked at its foundation and he’s forced to rely on others. Now, he must heal his body and his soul while trying to ignore his delectable and utterly off-limits neighbor.

Liz McKinley is stressed out, exhausted, and not in the mood for a bearded and growly man in her ER. When she patches him up to the best of his ability, she’s prepared to push him firmly from her thoughts. Of course, that would be easier if she and her best friend hadn’t bought the house next to his. Now their paths seem to cross daily, and she is finding it harder and harder to say no to the injured and angry man next door. But she’s been scarred one too many times in her life, and even though this Gallagher looks good enough to eat, she knows that sometimes, sating that craving is the worst thing she can do.

PASSION RESTORED is available now: 

✦Amazon http://amzn.to/2gmyyfO

✦iBooks http://apple.co/1QQOlPx

✦Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/2bEVCoO

✦Kobo http://bit.ly/2bc6sUp

✦Google Play http://bit.ly/2bsEhxU

 

About Carrie Ann Ryan

Carrie Ann Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. Her works include the Montgomery Ink, Redwood Pack, Talon Pack, and Gallagher Brothers series, which have sold over 2.0 million books worldwide. She started writing while in graduate school for her advanced degree in chemistry and hasn’t stopped since. Carrie Ann has written over fifty novels and novellas with more in the works. When she’s not writing about bearded tattooed men or alpha wolves that need to find their mates, she’s reading as much as she can and exploring the world of baking and gourmet cooking.

Website: http://carrieannryan.com/

Newsletter: http://carrieannryan.com/newsletter

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CarrieAnnRyan

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carrieannryanauthor/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5360266.Carrie_Ann_Ryan

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CarrieAnnRyanAuthor

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/carrieannryan/

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Talk to me Tuesday with Khloe Wren

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This week we welcome my favorite red head, Khloe Wren. Though she might not remember it, I met her at RT in Las Vegas. At the time I had not read her work, but she was so sweet that I have since fixed that and read everything that I could get my hands on! I especially love her shape shifter series! (and there is a new edition that I can not wait to read)! During this interview, she was so open and honest in her answers, which made me like and respect her all the more.

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Please tell me about yourself…

I live in a really small rural town in South Australia with my wonder husband, and two young daughters. We also have an 18 month old Maremma x Koolie puppy, who is completely insane, and two cats.

I’m 36 years old but feel a lot older than that most days! I’ve been battling depression since I was a teenager, and struggled with Endo and PCOS since my late teens. I’ve walked away from a car crash I shouldn’t have, and survived domestic abuse (although, I do now suffer with PTSD).

No matter how hard life gets, I always do my best to keep smiling.  We only get one shot at this thing, and I want to make the most of it! I’m a big believer in the saying that life isn’t about how big the storm is, but how well you can dance in the rain.

 How did you become an author? What inspired you to begin writing?

I’ve always read a lot, and had thought about writing something of my own many times. But fan fiction didn’t interest me, and I couldn’t think of anything original. Then, about five years ago, I had a hysterectomy. And, naturally, my body didn’t do what it was meant to and I prolapsed in the surgery.

This left me with six months of not being able to lift or carry anything over five kilos (roughly 14 pounds).  And while recovering from the surgery, and floating in the bliss of pain meds, I got a story idea! With the encouragement of my husband, I started to write and within three months I had the original version of what is now titled “Guardian’s Heart”

What events will your fans see you at in the following months?

I’ll be at RT17 in Atlanta, USA in early May. Then at Riveting Reads Australia in Brisbane in late October.

What do you like to do in your spare time (if you have any)?

I seem to spend a lot of time transporting my girls around to all their activities at the moment. On the upside, that is giving me more time to read. I still love to read, but don’t get all that much time to do it. I love to scrapbook too but haven’t had a chance to do it in a long time now.

Are you a full-time author? Or do you have another job on top of writing?

Technically, I’m a full time author. I also do the bookwork for my husband’s business, and chase my two daughters around to their various after school commitments. Lol, just at the moment I think ‘taxi driver’ would be a better job description for me!

What is the favorite thing that you’ve written?

It’s hard to choose just one. Fierce Guardian is my heart book. Aside from the paranormal elements, the beginning is what could have been had I not left my abusive ex. But Scarred Perfection I think is still my favorite. I wrote it when I was coming out of my latest battle with depression.

Tell me about your work in progress…

I’m currently trying a new genre and writing a MC Trilogy. It’s still romantic suspense, like my other books, but these books will have no paranormal elements in them.

My three heroes are all former Marines that the FBI approach to go under cover into a MC in northern Texas. Naturally, by the end of the Trilogy all three men will tell the FBI to piss off as they like the club life.

I’m currently editing Inking Eagle, the first book, and hope to have that ready for release in the next month. This one is about Eagle, a former Marine, and Silk, the niece to the Vice President who was orphaned by 9/11. In the book her father’s dirty deeds come back to bite her and Eagle has quite the job in keeping her safe.

What other authors would you like to team up with?

I’ve already co-written with Tamsin Baker. I’d love to team up with Eden Bradley to write a BDSM Club series. In my book Zeck, I introduce an underground club in Paris and readers have asked if I’m going to return to it. I’d love to, but I’m not sure I have the knowledge base to do it justice. I’m sure with someone like Eden, or Jenna Jacobs, or Lexi Blake, we’d be able to get it sorted!

 Do you have any advice to new authors? What do you wish someone had told you when you started as an author?

Be brave. It’s scary, but the payoff can be so big! Also, ignore those that will discourage you. So many will try to tell you that you can’t do it. But you can!

My biggest regret (in regards to my writing) is that I didn’t send my first book out to bigger publishers and at least try to get a contract with them.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? What do these terms mean to you?

Totally a pantser. I pretty much pantser my whole life. Like I had a signing last weekend, and didn’t pack until a few hours before I had to leave.

I will say the more books I write, the more I plan. Generally speaking, I do have a really rough outline in my head of what is going to happen.

Traditional or Indie publishing? Why did you decide on either?

I’m a mix at this point. I have a number of books with Evernight Publishing, and I’ve just signed my first contract with Siren Bookstrand.  I also have four books self published, with plans for many more.

I think with so many small publishing companies going under and taking authors’ profits with them, authors are becoming less trusting of publish houses.  I’ve been burned a couple times now, so I know I am really careful before I submit to a new publisher.

 

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These shifter mates must fight together to save their Leap family from its evil Alpha.

Shifter male Finn has spent his last year unsuccessfully searching the globe for his destined mate. Now Finn has returned home to England, and despite his parents warning him to stay away from the Devon Leap with its nasty Alpha, Alastair, Finn knows he must search the area for his one and only.

Choden, the original shifter, approaches Finn to tell him that he’s certain Finn’s true mate is indeed inside the Devon Leap. He also tells Finn he’s destined to be the next Alpha of the Devon Leap, and as such, he must act quickly to not only save his mate, but the whole leap from devastation. For Alastair is more than nasty, he is evil to his soul. He has taken to killing his own shifters to steal their mates for himself.

Shifter female Brooke is over waiting for someone to come to her Leap’s rescue. Her cousin has fallen victim to the cruel alpha, and if no one else has the courage to defy Alastair, Brooke will do it herself. But when he uses his power to freeze her in place, Brooke is trapped. Will Finn and Choden arrive in time to save her from Alastair’s foul plans?

And can the three work together to save their leap?

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Talk to me Tuesday with Maggie Ryan

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Welcome back to Talk to me Tuesdays. I am so excited this week. Maggie Ryan is one of those special people that you meet and immediately want to make your bestie! She writes wonderful romance novels that draw you in and make you want to live in the world that she created. I so enjoyed taking this opportunity to get to know her better. If you have not read her stuff, please get out there and one-click today!

Please tell me about yourself…

Let’s see – I recently turned the big 60. I’m a mother of four and a grandmother of five. I live in Texas but was born in Hawaii. I love reading, writing, sewing, fishing, playing games with friends and I hate cleaning house. My first ‘real’ job was at the age of fourteen and my biggest thrill was being able to finally retire and do what I ‘wanted’ to do. I have an incredible husband of almost forty years who has never once failed to support me and gives me encouragement whenever I wonder if I’m going insane. He is my rock and my very best friend.

How did you become an author? What inspired you to begin writing?

I have always loved the written word. I fell in love with stories at a very young age and, as I grew, I’d find myself wondering ‘what if this happened’ or ‘what if this person chose a different path’. Then I would write various scenes in my head. I found my characters wanted to tell their own stories and all I had to do was listen and write their words down – on paper back in those days. I wrote several short stories in school until that day a few years ago when I was dared to write my own book. I accepted the challenge and submitted my first story to the first publisher of erotica I found on the internet which happened to be Blushing Books. The rest, they say, is history.

Why the romance genre?

Romance is such a wide open field – it tells so many stories about love, angst, overcoming hardships, finding strength to carry on when you think you just can’t. With love I believe all things are possible. Loves gives you hope and fulfills you in ways you never even imagined. I suppose I like to be able to step away from the harsher, so called ‘real world’ and allow readers to escape and take journeys that enrich their souls.

Did you get your start in the romance genre? Or have you changed genres?

I suppose I did even though it was erotic romance. I’ve written suspense as well but, again, it is erotic as well.

What events will your fans see you at in the following months?

I’ll be attending the Blushing Book conference in Atlanta as well as the RT conference afterwards. I’ll be signing at both so hope to get to meet readers who would like to meet me. I’m also going to be at the East Texas Book Bash in Tyler, Texas, in August.

What do you like to do in your spare time (if you have any)?

I love to quilt and sew. I think every author has a very creative spirit and just must have outlets to express that creativity – in words, in crafts, in many different venues.

Do you write under any other pen names?

Not at this time but who knows – one day I may just decide I have to be someone else – LOL

Do the people in your everyday life know what you write? If so, how have they responded to it? Have you met conflict related to your profession?

Most of my everyday friends now know that I write and some of my family does as well. So far I haven’t received any real negative feedback – I think they’ve always known I had an author inside me and I warn them, if you don’t like erotica, don’t read my books. I respect their freedom to choose and they respect my freedom to write what I want.

Are you a full-time author? Or do you have another job on top of writing?

I am blessed with having the ability to devote my time to writing. I worked outside in very technical careers for decades but with my children grown and gone, I’ve now opened my office inside my living room – well, to be honest, my recliner!  I do edit as well but mostly, I spend my hours writing.

What is the favorite thing that you’ve written?

I honestly can’t say. Each book I’ve written has taken me somewhere. I’ve created characters who I feel I know and really would like to be friends with. I’ve researched places and eras that all offer so many possibilities that it is endless. I have adored working with other authors on sets and coauthoring with a few. I loved the Corbin’s Bend series – I mean, who wouldn’t want to live in such a wonderful community? I loved the Red Petticoat Saloon series as some of my favorite authors joined me in brining that period to life with some amazing characters living their own stories. I will always love the Women of Wintercrest and Hunter’s Ridge series as each of those people will always live in my heart. The Divine Design series is close to my heart as it takes place in my home town. The Williamette Wives series allowed me to journey along the Oregon Trail and wonder how on earth those settlers could leave everything they knew behind to pursue a dream. I could go on and on – I love them all!

What authors inspire your writing?

There are so many authors I admire. If we’re talking erotica, the list has to include Carolyn Faulkner, Alice Liddell, Maren Smith, Tabitha Black, Alta Hensley, Zoe Blake, Sue Lyndon, Renee Rose, Stevie MacFarlane and this is just to name a few. I have read thousands of books and love almost every single one. I tend to look at a story and just know that the author has put their heart and soul into these words and I feel honored to have been able to read them.

Best book you’ve read that nobody knows about?

Gee, I’ve read so many but if we’re talking about a book that I will never forget, it has to be one titled Moon Dust which, believe it or not, is more sci-fi than romance but it grabbed my attention and made me actually think about the world as a whole entity and what happens when the smallest little thing….starting with insects…..goes wrong. Believe me, it makes you hesitate to step on that spider!

Do you have a dream project?

I was very lucky in that a dream project became reality with The Red Petticoat Series. I would love to write another series where other authors can also tell their stories but am not quite ready to begin building that world yet – but just wait – it will come.

Tell me about your work in progress…

I’m currently working on finishing a trilogy with Alta Hensley titled “The Black Stallion Trilogy”. We’ve written the first two books, “Maddox” and “Stryder” and are now deep into the third brother’s story titled “Anson”. 

I’m also working on a book for the “Black Light” series and a new age-play story as well. A lot of irons in the fire.

What other authors would you like to team up with?

I’ve coauthored my first book with the lovely Laurel Lasky and then worked with Abbie Adams. Recently, I’ve written two books of a trilogy with Alta Hensley and working on the third. I’d love to team up with Tabitha Black and who knows what the future holds…there are so many talented authors who I admire and would be honored to work with.

Do you have any advice to new authors? What do you wish someone had told you when you started as an author?

The advice I have is to follow your heart and your dreams. Don’t let people tell you that you aren’t good enough or that you can’t write. If you have a story to tell that won’t get out of your head, write it down. There are people who are willing to help guide you and who are supportive of your dreams. Yes, it can seem scary and overwhelming, but if all you think about is becoming an author, then you, my friend, are meant to write a story! 

As for what I wish someone had told me, it would have to be to realize that you will never be able to please everyone. There will always be those who don’t like your story or think you went too far or not far enough. There will always be those who tell you how the story should have gone but if you are like me….let that go and just write. Readers know when a story comes from your soul – it is obvious in your characters – let that be your guide.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? What do these terms mean to you?

I am definitely a pantser.  I sit down and just let my fingers do the typing as the characters demand to say this, do that, go there, experience that…ideas come to me and I go with them. I know that if that scene doesn’t quite seem to fit here, it can easily be moved ‘there’. I’ve been called a ‘tweaking queen’ because I am never quite satisfied. Heck, I could tweak a zillion times and still submit the book and think, “Oh, wait – she wants to say this!”  Sometimes you just have to let it go and move on to the next.

I have had to do a bit of mutual plotting with coauthoring as those books are not just my own – but even then, there is mostly typing by plopping my seat into a chair and writing as ideas flow.

Traditional or Indie publishing? Why did you decide on either?

I went traditional publishing when I began as I wasn’t really aware there was a choice. It was just amazing that I, a virtual nobody, could write a story that a real, honest-to-goodness publisher wanted to publish.  That is not to say that I won’t Indie – I believe it best to diversify and not depend solely on one avenue or another. That’s the magic of writing – there are so many paths from which to journey.

Who is your book boyfriend? Why?

LOL – I’d sound very greedy choosing more than one but at this time, I’d have to say it is Gabriel Vasquez from The Red Petticoat Series – I mean, that man is just HOT. I love the way he thinks, the way he looks, the way he reacts with Jewel and, well, just about everything he does. 

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Sweet Town Love is comprised of the following original novellas:

THE WRIGHT RECIPE by Maggie Ryan

ON THIN ICE by Stevie MacFarlane

FINDING SYDNEY by Adrienne Blake

I BELONG HERE by Misty Malone

ALWAYS YOU by Anna Kristell

LOVE TASK by Vanessa Brooks

SOCK IT TO ME by Rayanna Jamison

MID-WINTER MELT DOWN by Beth Bennett

MOMENTS by Paige Parsons

PIPER IN A PICKLE by Chula Stone

THE ART OF LOVE by Alyssa Bailey

PANTIES ARE NOT OPTIONAL by Georgia St. Claire

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Stryder – The Black Stallion Ranch – Book 2

 

USA Today Bestselling Authors Maggie Ryan and Alta Hensley join forces again to bring you the second novel in this action-packed, romantic suspense trilogy full of bad boys and the women who love them.

 

Dark… seductive… promise

 

Stryder Steele, along with his two brothers and father, lives by one code: Help all in need. Even if it means saving those who walk among the most sinister criminals in the world. Known as The Black Stallions, their mission is simple – provide rescue and safety to the innocents drawn into the evil depths of the underground.

Zoya Morozova has been kidnapped and ready to be sold at an underground human auction in Moscow. Being sold to the highest bidder, she has no idea her life is about to change when her new Master is the dark and mysterious… Stryder Steele.

Bad boy Stryder remembers the pain of being unable to save another but he’ll put his life on the line to save this beautiful Russian farm girl. When he buys Zoya with the purpose of rescuing her, he has no idea that she may have the power to rescue him as well.

Flown to The Black Stallion Ranch, and with the help of Zoya and the knowledge of the human sex trade she has, can the Steeles put together the pieces in time to save all the innocent women who had been sold to the monsters of the underground, or will they lose to the mastermind of it all?

Publisher’s Note: This book contains graphic sex and BDSM elements.

 

 

Talk to me Tuesday with Alta Hensley

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Welcome back to Talk to me Tuesday. This week, we welccome Alta Hensley. She is a USA Today Bestselling author who I met a few years ago, and have enjoyed reading all that she offers. She has many books in varying areas or romance, from light to pretty dark, and all are worth one-clicking! Most recently, she wrote a story for an anthology and has a series out with fellow author Maggie Ryan. I am a big fan, and I hope that if you have not read her work before, you will check her out today!

Please tell me about yourself…

My name is Alta Hensley. I am a wife to a wonderful husband (Mr. Alta Hensley) and a mother to two beautiful daughters. I’m also a USA Today Bestselling romance author. I’m truly living my dream of doing what I love more than anything full time.

What events will your fans see you at in the following months?

I will be at the Blushing Books conference as well as Romantic Times in Atlanta in May. I will also be at A Dark And Seductive Affair in North Carolina in July. I have a couple of other ‘maybe’ signings, but I haven’t signed in blood yet.

Do you write under any other pen names?

I just write as Alta Hensley right now. I may create another for my really kinky alter ego called Lulu Bell. But right now, she is just sitting in the background begging to come out to play. I just need to make time for her naughty ass.

Do the people in your everyday life know what you write? If so, how have they responded to it? Have you met conflict related to your profession?

Yes, everyone in my life knows what I do for a living. Some have even read my books and are huge supporters. Others, like my brother, support from afar but won’t read one. Ha! I have only had positive experiences, and all my friends and family think it’s great I do what I love to do.

Tell me about your work in progress…

I wish I just had one to talk about. I always have at least three that I am working on. Author ADD. J

What other authors would you like to team up with?

Any and all. I LOVE group projects and collaborations. Although I have had to say no to a lot of projects coming this year because I need to focus on some of my standalones. I think I have an addiction to anthologies and projects. I love them. Ha!

Do you have any advice to new authors? What do you wish someone had told you when you started as an author?

BRAND. I wish someone would have told me to focus on who I am, what I want to be known for, and to focus on my brand. Social media is huge. Start now so you aren’t in catch up mode later on. I have heard many give the advice to just write, and I would have to respectfully disagree. Social media is key to the romance genre. It is just as important as writing the book. Become an expert. Study others that have mastered it. And make a point to do something career focused every day that is not writing like tweeting, or posting on FB, or reading on what experts in the genre have to say. You cannot be a hermit and hide away and think people will buy your books. As much as FB etc. can be a time suck, it’s a necessary one. If you aren’t tech savvy. LEARN to be. I remember watching a video by a NY Times Bestselling Romance author who makes 5-6 figures a month. She said something that has stayed with me. “If you are a romance author, and not active on social media. Quit now. Just quit now.” Maybe harsh, but the girl obviously knows what she is talking about. So every single day, I focus on doing something.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Both. I tend to lean toward the pantser side naturally, but as I grow as an author, I am finding the need to be a plotter.

Traditional or Indie publishing? Why did you decide on either?

Hybrid. I want both.

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Alta Hensley is a USA TODAY bestselling erotic romance author who has had #1 top-selling books in dark, contemporary, BDSM, erotic science fiction, humor, suspense and historical. She writes the hot, dark, and dirty romance.

 

Being a multi-published author in the romance genre, Alta is known for her dark, gritty alpha heroes, sometimes sweet love stories, hot eroticism, and engaging tales of the constant struggle between dominance and submission.

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AltaHensleyAuthor/

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2e4R1ii

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AltaHensley

Website: www.altahensley.com

Join her mailing list: http://www.subscribepage.com/i0n8g9

 

Titles by Alta Hensley

 

Like Poison-Vagabond Series #1 (April 2017)

Bad, Bad, Girl- Complete Traditional Love Series (April 11, 2017)

Delicate Scars (March 7, 2017)

Little Victorian Ladies Anthology (February 22, 2017)

No White Knight

Dark Feather

Caring For Citrine

Traditional Love

Traditional Terms

Traditional Change

Poppa’s Progeny

In the Palace of Lazar – Harem (Book One)

Conquering Lazar – Harem (Book Two)

The Slave Huntsman

The Dark Forest

Captured by Time (with Carolyn Faulkner)

A New Forever (with Carolyn Faulkner)

Enrolling Little Etta (with Allison West)

The Nanny (with Allison West)

Little Secrets (with Allison West)

Maddox, The Black Stallion Trilogy #1 (with Maggie Ryan)

Stryder, The Black Stallion Trilogy #2 (with Maggie Ryan)

Anson, The Black Stallion Trilogy #3 (with Maggie Ryan)

 

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Talk to me Tuesday with Maren Smith

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I am so excited to introduce you to this week’s author. I am such a huge fan that I can not express it! I have read everything that I can get my hands on, and I am always waiting for what comes next. Maren Smith is a fabulous writer, and if you like reading about hot doms and sassy subbies, then she is the author for you! I started with her Masters of the Castle series and haven’t stopped reading her yet! She and several of her author friends have a new anthology out. I love those dark fairy tales! I loved getting to know her better, and now I have some new books to one-click!

 

Please tell me about yourself…

My name is Maren Smith. I have been an author of DD/BDSM erotic romance for more than 20 years now. I live in Kansas with both my sisters, who are authors, my father, who is also an author, my ex-husband, who is slowly being driven crazy by authors, and my furbabies and parrot. I am a submissive, a babygirl, a pain slut and a coffee whore.

How did you become an author? What inspired you to begin writing?

When I was in Jr. high school, we were asked the question: What do you want to be when you grow up? I sat there for almost the entire class without a single clue, although I did know what I didn’t want to do. I didn’t want to work for a living. I wanted to stay at home like my mom did, take care of kids and a husband (my subservient 1950s housewife personality was coming out even then), but unlike my parents, I didn’t want to be poor while I did it. And that’s when it hit me. I could be an author. Everybody knows authors never work. They spend all day soaking in the bath and eating chocolate bonbons from the lickable fingers of sexy men clad only in soap bubbles. I was sold on that fantasy almost faster than my fourteen-year-old brain could glom onto it. As with most teenagers, my fourteen-year-old brain did not know what it was talking about.

What do you like to do in your spare time (if you have any)?

I love to cross-stitch, go watch the dirt-track racing, maybe see a movie at the theater and, of course, I love to read.

Do you write under any other pen names?

Yes, Maren Smith is my name and what I publish my domestic discipline/BDSM/spanking romance stories under. I put my ageplay and DD/lg stories under Darla Phelps and my older harder core stories (the stuff I wrote way back before I’d yet experienced any part of the lifestyle) are under Denise Hall. I also write mainstream fantasy/paranormal romance under Penny Alley.

For those who write BDSM/DD…Do you live the lifestyle? If so, what would you like to share with your readers?

I absolutely do live the lifestyle. My ex-husband and I met through a spanking magazine called Stand Corrected, put out by ShadowLane waaaaaay back when. Although no longer together, we are still very good friends and are both supporting administrators for a dungeon in Wichita. I typically attend two parties a month there and hold a supporting role for another local group. I have a Daddy Dom, who I am madly in love with, and just about everything that I have done to my characters in my books I have done in real life so I know how it feels.

Do the people in your everyday life know what you write? If so, how have they responded to it? Have you met conflict related to your profession?

If someone asks me what I write, I’ll tell them.  But then, all my friends are either other authors or in the lifestyle. Or cats. Cats don’t care what you write so long as there’s food in the dish 24/7.  Actually, that’s not quite true. I told my family. And although my family is comprised of other authors, they are not in the lifestyle. How did they take it, you ask? My mother was so freakin’ proud of her published author of a daughter that she called all of my highly-religious relations to share the news. On her very next trip to visit them, she pulled up my website and sent my aging octigerian aunt a copy of both my and my sister’s books. My aunt and her friends took turns reading both books out loud to one another at their quilting circle. There is no humiliation play devised by any Dom anywhere that comes close to describing what I felt when I found out she was reading one of my books to her friends. Do you want to know what they thought of it? They didn’t know what the big deal was. “Husbands did that all the time when I was younger.” I don’t know if that’s actually true, but that’s what they said. So, yeah. These days I’ll tell anyone what I do and if they can’t handle it, that’s their issue.

Are you a full-time author? Or do you have another job on top of writing?

I am a full-time author. I keep very long hours, typically writing about 8 to 14 hours per day, including weekends and holidays. I might take a full day off maybe 5-6 times per year.

Tell me about your work in progress…

I am currently heading up a massive 15-book project with some of the greatest authors in the genre today. The series is set to start with my book, which publishes this May, and it’s absolutely killing me that I can’t talk about it yet!

Are you a plotter or a pantser? What do these terms mean to you?

I’m a plantser, which means every few hours I wander the house looking for something to water. To be honest, I am both a plotter and a pantser. At the beginning of each story, I sit down and write up a rough outline. My outlines are generally a few sentences for each chapter, whatever I need to know to get me from ‘Once upon a time…’ to ‘…and they lived happily ever after’.  So yes, I plot. However, I don’t hold myself to anything I write in my outlines because my characters often divorce themselves from my grand plans to go do their own crazy thing. I have had to throw away whole outlines because my characters went their own way so dramatically that nothing of my original version of that story could be salvaged. And yet, I can’t think of a single book in which allowing them to do that did not make the book a hundred times better than my original idea. Plotters make their characters do what they want them to do. Pantsers sit back and watch in amazement while their characters get themselves into all kinds of trouble. So don’t be afraid to let them do that, and don’t be afraid to switch back and forth between the two if one story calls for one method more than other does. Neither way is wrong if the story gets written.

Do you have any advice to new authors? What do you wish someone had told you when you started as an author?

Keep writing. Every new project starts off being exciting and fun and sexy and thrilling to create, but at some point in every project, all that shiny surface stuff stops shining quite so brightly. That’s when the real work required to create the kind of story your readers will fall in love with becomes just that… work. Keep writing anyway. Writer’s Block is only an obstacle if you let it be one. Plow through it. Your words aren’t ever going to be perfect or golden the first, second, third or even fourth time you go over it. Keep editing until it’s done and don’t ever fall into the trap of thinking that’s what editors are for. Editors are never there to do your job for you. You write the book. You polish and polish and polish until it is as perfect as you can make it. Then you pass it to your editor, who will make it even better and prevent you from looking like an idiot to your readers because your eye skipped right over ‘peak’ when it should have been ‘peek’. Don’t quit your day job until you’re darn sure you can afford to. Get up early in the morning or write late after everyone else has gone to bed. Write on your breaks and at lunch and on every napkin you can get your hands on at your best friend’s cousin’s wedding in Europe while they’re doing the Chicken Dance. Be that crazy person who digs frantically through the trash looking for last night’s empty pizza box because it has three paragraphs of your next chapter on it. This is a job like any other and some days it’s going to suck, but keep at it. Be professional. Be polite. Be nice. And keep writing.

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Amazon Link: The Dark Forest Anthology

She is an independent career woman with a penchant for the seamy underside of life. Her name is Goldi, and Goldi has always walked her own road. Including the road that led to her latest job. Breaking into that house was every bit as easy as she’d been led to believe. What it wasn’t, was empty and shifters (particularly were-bears) were not known to be forgiving. Now, trapped in the terrifying dark of their basement dungeon, Goldi knows she’s in for a long night of carefully exacted revenge. What she doesn’t know is which might be worse: the inevitable pain as they work in tandem to break her down… or the incredible pleasure that pain brings.

 

 

Excerpt:

 

She turned in a full circle, her eyes gradually adjusting to the gloom enough for her to make out the sparse lines and hard edges of widely spaced furniture and even the dangling cord of a single bare lightbulb hanging from the ceiling. Feeling the way with her feet, she reached for it, hoping the light might help her find another way out. It didn’t, but it did help her see her situation more clearly.

This wasn’t a cellar. It was a torture chamber and she was standing in the middle of it, mere feet away from some kind of cruel bondage bench. Like the horse upstairs only without the equine neck and head, it had four legs, a padded rail across the top, and multiple rings on all sides by which to affix whoever was stupid enough to get caught in this house.

Right now, that someone was her.

Everywhere she looked, she saw horror after horror. Neatly coiled ropes, straps, manacles, crops, paddles, and even hooks—hooks, hanging from other hooks—dangled off the stone walls. Blindfolds and masks lined the shelves amid more gag varieties than she’d ever known existed. Gags with balls, gags with bits, gags with round metal hook contraptions designed to force a jaw open and keep it that way no matter what.

Another hard thump pulsed through her, an unexpected echo of which landed, centered, and took command of her clit.

Once upon a time, a wise man had told her moments of stress could teach a person a lot about themselves. She had to stop talking to wise men because this wasn’t at all something she wanted to learn.

A low, scraping footstep on the hard stone floor.

Goldi looked down at the stones she was rooted to, at her own feet which hadn’t moved. Her heart thumped again, her clit hummed, and every fine hair on her body stood up on end as she heard the bellows-like exhale of beastly breath nowhere near far enough behind her.

Her own breath sounded abnormally loud and shaky as Goldi faced the third bear. It was even larger than the other two she had seen, and it was squaring itself against her from the far side of this entirely too small cellar. Facing it now too, she hugged the ledger tight against her.

She was going to die. She was a little surprised that she wasn’t more scared. Her legs were shaking. She was clutching the book so tight that the edges of the hard cover bit into the fleshy parts of her fingers, making her knuckles ache and throb. But she didn’t scream. The urge was there, choking up the back of her throat at tonsil level, but that was as far as it rose, even when the bear rose to stand. Twenty good feet separated them and it still towered over her, not roaring or growling, or making any noise apart from the heaviness of its breathing. Not moving either, apart from a faint pawing at the air and a twitch of its black nose.

She was just beginning to think here was where she was destined to stay until the owner of this horrible house came home, when the bear took a lumbering step towards her. First one, and then another, and then it threw the whole of its massive body into a furious shake, as if it had just come out of a river and were shaking off the water. Only there was no water, just the massive coat of its own fur that rippled, shifted, melted. The whole bear melted and in the span of time it took to take that third lumbering step it was no longer a bear. It was a man—long and lean, with the fur of his previous pelt becoming a headful of neatly trimmed hair and a dark brown trail of the same that lead the way from his navel to his… oh-dear-God, he was naked. And huge. But mostly naked, which was ominous enough to break through muffling grip of shock and horror to dislodge a mousy squeak.

The cool dark of his stare never once wavering from her face as he started toward her. Helpless to do anything but stare at the heavy pendulum swing of his cock, Goldi watched him come. He stopped within feet of her and, without a word, took the ledger from her numb hands.

At the top of the stairs, she jumped at the click of the cellar door before it swung open. Two more men came down the stairs, their bare feet tromping on the wooden steps and their lean naked bodies every bit as impressively formed as the man frowning before her.

“Told you she’d come,” said the last male, as he stepped off the bottommost stair. They could have been brothers, they so closely resembled one another. Of the three, he probably stood the shortest, although only by a scant inch or two.

“You were right,” agreed his companion. Of the three, his brown hair was the lightest and he was the only one with a light dusting of fur upon his chest. He was also the only one not clean-shaven. His neatly-trimmed moustache grew down to join the thin square lines of the beard that completely framed his unsmiling mouth. “Beautiful, but as greedy as she is dishonest.”

The two men fanned out as they approached her. Like hunters, locked on a target worth stalking. The pit of her belly fluttered. She didn’t like this feeling. She didn’t like feeling like prey. She especially didn’t like that way her nipples were tightening the closer they came, or the burlap scrape that assaulted the tips with each shallow, shaky breath she took.

“Whatever shall we do with her?” the shorter mocked, all but purring with sarcasm.

Her heart was pounding hard, battering the insides of her ribs and making it so very hard to think. She hated that her hands were shaking and that raising them in surrender, as she did now, only made that shaking worse. Not that she had a lot of options, but her racing mind hadn’t given up on the slim chance that she might come up with a way to get out of this.

They thought she was beautiful. Though none were smiling, that at least gave her one feasible avenue to try.

Goldi eased into a cautiously seductive pose, her empty hands held high, hip cocked in a way that amplified her curves. “All right,” she acknowledged, tucking her elbows to make her full breasts a little rounder. “You caught me. So, now what?” She let her tone dip into playful taunting, hoping against hope they might rise to the bait and completely disregard her next suggestion. “Anybody going to call the police?”

Two of the three cracked thin, dangerous smiles.

“Oh, sweetheart,” the smallest said. “Now where’s the fun in that?”

 

 

Author Bio:

 

I am a coffee whore, babygirl, pain slut, administrator at two local BDSM dungeons, resident of the wilds of freakin’ Kansas (still don’t know how I ended up here) and submissive to the love of my life. With more than twenty years of writing under my belt, I’ve hit the USA Bestselling Author’s list, have penned more than 120 novels, novellas and short stories, and am the author of the Masters of the Castle series, of which Kaylee’s Keeper reached #1 on all Amazon. Writing kinky since before it was cool, my favorite past times include provoking my Dom into testing out all the fun sexy things I put my characters through.

 

Maren’s Blog: http://badgirlscorner.wordpress.com

Friend her on Facebook: http://facebook.com/Maren.Smith.10

Find her on Twitter: http://twitter.com/MarenSmithBooks

 

Other titles by Maren Smith

Newest Releases:

Goldi in Chains (The Dark Forest Anthology)

 

Coming February 9, 2017

Unbroken (Black Light: Valentine Roulette Anthology)

 

The Red Petticoat Saloon Series:

Jade’s Dragon

Warming Emerald

 

Masters of the Castle Series:

Book 1, Holding Hannah

Book 2, Kaylee’s Keeper

Book 3, Saving Sara

Book 4, Sweet Sinclair

Book 5, Chasing Chelsea

Book 6, Owning O

Book 7, Maddy Mine

 

Corbin’s Bend:

Last Dance for Cadence (Season 1, Book 8)

Have Paddle, Will Travel (Season 2, Book 7)

 

A Few Other Titles:

B-Flick

The Great Prank

Jinxie’s Orchids

Life After Rachel

The Locket

The Mountain Man

Something Has To Give

 

 

Talk to me Tuesday…Special Edition with Juliana Conners

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Yes, I am not crazy, I realize that today is not actually Tuesday. However, my new friend, Juliana Conners was available and has a new book coming out this week. So, I figured it is my blog and I can do what I want to with it, so here we are! When hearing the answers to her interview, I was so impressed with this lovely lady. I often wonder if I will ever have time to finish my first novel, but she has inspired me to know that maybe, just maybe I can do it too! If you have not read her work before, you will not be disappointed. Yes. Boss was so hot, and today, Please, Boss was released! Hot Hot Hot!!!

Please tell me about yourself…

I have always been a writer but I haven’t always done it for a living. In college I studied creative writing and literature but I didn’t know what kind of job I could get with a liberal arts degree that would pay the bills. So I went to law school and became a lawyer. I told myself I would save all my lawyering money so that I could retire very early and travel the world and write. But of course real life got in the way. I practiced law at large firms for five years and during that time I was a member of a writing group that met weekly and I tried to keep up with my writing but it was hard because of my stressful job all day and the amount of hours I had to bill.

After five years I decided to leave the last law firm I worked at and start my own law firm. That was a lot better but it was still an incredible amount of work for something that my heart just wasn’t in, and it didn’t give me the opportunity to pursue my passion of writing nearly as much as I would have wanted.

During this time I got married and began to have children and I also had some other personal things happen that helped me re-evaluate my priorities in life. I decided to pursue what I truly loved as much as I could. I was already on a planned maternity leave of sorts where I was doing some legal work from home but not working full-time. So I stopped taking new clients and I started writing as much as I could. I also found out about self-publishing, an opportunity I’m very grateful to have. When it was all said and done I had practiced law for ten years—five as an associate at law firms and five as the owner of my own law practice or in some degree as a work from home mom—and I’m still technically a lawyer because I have an active law license and a couple cases that still haven’t settled or otherwise resolved but I consider myself a writer now. I write part-time but I have been trying to move towards full-time writing now that I don’t have to practice law much.

I have an amazing husband who is very supportive of my writing. He works in web development.  Together we have two sons— a toddler and a baby— and we have a daughter with us in spirit who is my muse. We also have a dog and a cat. Other than writing and reading, I enjoy movies, music and traveling.

How did you become an author? What inspired you to begin writing?

I have always loved to read and write, ever since I can remember. In Kindergarten we had different activity stations and I loved the one with pink copy paper stapled together in which to write and illustrate our own books. (I am not a good illustrator!) In fact I got in trouble for spending too much time at that station. We were supposed to rotate to the kitchen station, the science experiment station, the blocks and building station, etc., but I spent every chance I could at the book making station. What inspired me to write was books; I loved reading from a very young age and I wanted to make some of my own.

Why the romance genre?

I like focusing on the relationship between two people (or more, since I’ve written some menage) in my stories. I enjoy exploring the range of possible things that can happen to them to not only challenge and strengthen the relationship but also the two people individually who make up the couple. All of my romance is bad boy romance but I started out writing military romance (the three books in my Bradford Brothers series) and I like the suspenseful plots and action in that sub-genre. Some of my characters in that series were in motorcycle clubs or rock bands and I think that those lifestyles are exciting as well so I went on to write Larson, a spin off of the series as Larson is a friend of the Bradford Brothers, and I plan to write more books that follow different friends of the characters. Larson turned into a darker kind of romantic suspense than I had anticipated but I enjoyed writing it. Then I wrote a sports romance (Out of Bounds) and it was interesting to write about athletes (Wesley is a quarterback and Chelsea is a cheerleader). Lately I’ve been writing more “office” or “at work” romances featuring strong alpha male bad boys and it’s fun to explore the kinds of power balances and relationships that can happen at work—which is where we spend a lot of our time and where it only makes sense that relationships would develop. I just think there are so many different fun plot lines or areas to explore within the broad category of romance that I could write for years and years (and I hope to!) and never get bored.

Did you get your start in the romance genre? Or have you changed genres?

I’ve written fiction of all kinds, including literary fiction, women’s fiction and short stories, and I’ve also nonfiction in the form of memoir and magazine articles or essays. When I first started self-publishing I wrote erotica. But I enjoy romance the best because I feel it embraces all the different genres I’ve ever written. For me romance has been a melting pot of different genres or styles that I explore and experiment with, while staying true to the basic form of a journey a couple embarks on together that of course always ends with a happy ending.

What events will your fans see you at in the following months?

I do Facebook parties and I’m active in The Hot Spot, a Facebook group that connects readers and writers. We are having a party on January 28th, as well as a Valentine’s Day party and other parties. I enjoy talking to readers and everyone is welcome to join The Hot Spot. I attend parties elsewhere on Facebook as well and you can like my Facebook page to find out where I’ll be and when— I usually have giveaways, swag, eye candy and games at my parties. Also, I encourage everyone to sign up for my newsletters (Jules’ News and Sizzling Hot Reads) where I give news about my books and my writing and my life, as well as notifications of recommended reads and discounted and free books. I try to talk about fun things and send photos or funny tales about my life and I also frequently do giveaways that everyone who subscribes is eligible to win. Of course I also give out exclusive bonus content— right now I’m giving away a free book and a bonus extended epilogue to my latest release Yes, Boss for everyone on my newsletter.

Do the people in your everyday life know what you write? If so, how have they responded to it? Have you met conflict related to your profession?

At first only my husband knew. We both come from conservative religious families and I was afraid of being judged for writing sex in my stories. But as time went by it gets kind of hard to hide and I also decided not to be ashamed. Sex is a normal part of life and relationships. Romance is a great genre because it allows women to explore our fantasies of the perfect relationship both emotionally and physically. So now I’m more open about it except that I kind of pick and choose who to tell and when; I don’t exactly announce it to the world at every opportunity or anything, but that’s just because I’m more of a private person and an introvert. My husband has no filter and tells the world; he’s very proud of me. He went to a coding course to learn web development and for his web design project he built me a website for my books. He had a graduation and project demonstration day that his mom and I attended. He was presenting a big group project, not the website he had made for me. But one of his instructors came up to me in front of his mom and told me she loves that I write sexy romance books and that the guys on my covers are so hot. My mother in law didn’t know that I wrote romance and she was sure surprised. But she didn’t say anything negative about it.

Now sometimes I forget who knows and who doesn’t know. Everyone my husband works with knows so when I go to work events with him, people come up to me and ask how my writing is going or how many books I’ve published and sometimes I get confused that my two different worlds have merged, before I remember that my husband tells everyone everything. I think that as I continue writing, which I hope to do for a very long time, more and more people will know and I’m fine with that. I’m proud of my books and I love my job.

Tell me about your work in progress…

I’m writing a follow up book to my book Yes, Boss that’s called Please, Boss. It’s also an office romance and it’s set in the same law firm as Yes, Boss. The main character in Please, Boss is the law partner of the boss in Yes, Boss. I had a lot of readers tell me they really liked the couple (Asher and Madilyn forever!) in Yes, Boss so I’ve making sure that couple makes a lot of appearances in this book. I’m also planning a third book and whenever I put out a box set I will probably add a novella about the couple from Yes, Boss (or maybe it will be about all the couples from the boss books). I’ve also been working on a football romance book that is a follow up book to my book Out of Bounds. I was trying to get it out in time for the Super Bowl (I’m a big football fan!) but I took a detour to write Please, Boss don’t know if I’ll make it. But eventually it will be published.

What character that you’ve written is most like you? What traits do you share?

I think I’m most like Madilyn in Yes, Boss, so I was really happy that my readers have related to her so well. I’ve always been kind of on the outside looking in— observing everything and taking notes like writers and readers always do. Madilyn works hard and is new and rather apprehensive but she’s determined to do well and she doesn’t want to get caught up in drama. Madilyn is annoyed by the “Mean Girls” at her law firm but she doesn’t let them stop her. I like to think I handle difficult situations with the same grace that Madilyn did but it’s just something I strive for; not something that I always achieve.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? What do these terms mean to you?

To me being a plotter means making a detailed outline while being a pantser means just writing the whole book from the top of my head. I think most writers are somewhere in the middle and I certainly am one of them. I started out being more of a plotter and I used to spend way too much time agonizing over coming up with the perfect outline, just to throw it out the window or change it completely once my writing and the characters led me down a different path. Now that I trust the process and my own instincts better, I usually start with a rough outline and character sketches and then I start writing. As I write I fill in my outline further down the road with where I think the story is leading me but I remain open to suggestions from the characters. My stories are character-driven and my characters truly do write the plot for me.

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Juliana Conners writes SIZZLING HOT ROMANCE about down and dirty bad boys and the lovely ladies who win their hearts… and their rock hard, tattooed bodies too, of course.

To keep in touch with Juliana, find her on Facebook or Twitter or visit her website at julianaconners.com — her bad boy webgeek techie husband made it. They live in a warm and sunny climate with their two little boys who are rarely bad, and their three pets who often are.

Join JULIANA’S BAD BOYS Mailing List to be in the know about new releases, ARC offers, freebies and discount promotions, contests, prizes and exclusive content. To sign up for the newsletter, go to:

hyperurl.co/JCMail

Author Links:

 Website: https://julianaconners.com

 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJulianaConners/

 Twitter: https://twitter.com/JulianaConners

 Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/juliana-conners

 Amazon: www.amazon.com/Juliana-Conners/e/B018YZRAMI/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2

 

 

Take Me. Teach Me. Train Me. Please, Boss.

 I’m used to getting everything I want: Yachts, jet skis, plus the jet that flies me to my yacht and my jet skis.

And of course, plenty of f*cking women. 

But none of them are subordinates. My one rule is to never mix work and pleasure. 

An office fling isn’t worth losing the lucrative law firm I’ve helped build.

 But now I have a spunky, sexy secretary named Ruby and I also have a dilemma. 

Because I want Ruby in a way I’ve never wanted anyone else.

And I don’t let anyone’s rules f*cking stop me from getting what I want. Not even my own. 

 My c*ck is as ready as my mind is hesitant. 

I know I shouldn’t. I’m her boss and old enough to know better.

She thinks she wants me. For her very first time.

But she doesn’t know what it is she’s asking for.

 I don’t just want her on my desk, on my floor, on my lap.

I want her tied up and begging me to do whatever I want with her.

Ruby’s no pushover. She has a mind of her own. And I’m beginning to suspect she has some dark secrets.

Her own past, mixed with my present desires, could get us both into a lot of trouble.  

 Tying her up could take me down. So why do I still want to do it?

 

 

 

Food Fun with the Masters and Mercenaries!

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Ian finally gave his blessing and this week I have left the land of the lemons. Now, I know that it may be surprising that he has sent me on through the book, as we all know that Ian is not one to change his mind, but he decided that I should try new things. Who knows how long he will allow it before bringing me back to lemon world, so in the mean time we will see where it goes!

I am a lover of pasta. There is a little Italian place here in my hometown which serves authentic Italian food. It was there that I first tried carbonara. So, I was very excited to try the recipe when I found it Bits and Bites. I have to tell you it did not disappoint! So I need to start by reminding you all that I am a nurse and certainly not a photographer. I apologize for the photo in advance. (I guess flash isn’t always my friend!)

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I have mentioned previously that one of the reasons that I love this book is because of the ingredients used in the recipes. In the spaghetti carbonara, I didn’t have to buy anything special at all. I made 2 small changes to the original recipe. First, I did not have linguini in the house, so I used thin spaghetti. Second, I have a husband that has medical issues and I am always looking for ways to add protein to any meal. So, I added grilled chicken to the carbonara. He is not always a lover of trying new things, but he has enjoyed our trip with the Masters and Mercenaries as much as I have and this week is no exception. If you like pasta, then you will love this recipe!

What should I make next week? I would love to hear from you!

 

Talk to me Tuesday with Zoe Blake

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Welcome back, and happy Tuesday to you all. Today, we have the luck of being able to chat with Zoe Blake. I have been facebook stalking her for quite some time, and she does not disappoint! She is participating in a dark anthology based on your favorite fairy tales! I absolutely can not wait to read it with Zoe and some more of my favorite authors (you might be seeing them in the coming weeks!)

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Please tell me about yourself…

My name is Zoe Blake. I am an erotic romance author who specializes in historical romance. As far as writing style, I am known for being explicitly descriptive. As a person, I am rather contrary. I adore needlepointing, BBC period pieces and Victorian literature but I also ride motorcycles, have three tattoos and think curse words make the best adjectives.

What events will your fans see you at in the following months?

I will be attending Romantic Times in Atlanta, Georgia. I’m thinking about doing my very first book signing. I am of course nervous. Like it is my sweet 16 and I’m worried no one will show up to the party! I also plan to be at the Romance Writers Association Conference.

Are you a full-time author? Or do you have another job on top of writing?

I am lucky to have two dream jobs. During my down time, I write but for my main job, I am an Event Planner. I plan weddings, large corporate galas, conferences, you name it. I love it. The creativity behind menu planning, designing the décor, coming up with a theme, seeing it all come together. Basically, I design memories for a living.

Tell me about your work in progress…

I am in the middle of my first Western series. I am currently working on “The Gunfighter’s Revenge” the second book. I am very particular about doing research for all my books and getting even the smallest detail correct. My heroine doesn’t wear a gray dress. She wears a dove gray, lindsey-woolsey, full skirt over a bustle. My hero doesn’t shoot a rifle. He shoots a .44 caliber Henry lever action, sixteen shot rifle with a brass frame, good for a thousand yards. The only thing I am fudging a bit is how men in the old Wild West were fonder of drinking sugary concoctions like Champagne Flips than they were whiskey and beer. It’s just not sexy to have your strong, alpha male saddle up to a bar and order a Mint Julep!

The series is based around three soldiers whose lives were changed not by the war-between-the-states but by the various greedy, murderous deeds of others. Now that the war is finally over, they head West to seek their revenge. In the first book, we meet Mason, who decides on a very dangerous path to avenge the murder of his brother. The kidnapping of an innocent, defenseless woman. The problem for Mason is, his intended victim is not so defenseless! In the second, we meet Horn, who is searching the West for the man who framed him for murder right before the war. Along the way he meets Emma…a woman he could possibly learn to love…if he could get her to stop trying to kill him long enough! The third and final book will be Michael…and well, there is a special surprise for that story!

Are you a plotter or a pantser? What do these terms mean to you?

I am the poster child for Type A/OCD personality so I am definitely a plotter. I have a special notebook I use for timelines and future book ideas. I also use color-coded pens to keep track of research notes, character traits, sub-plots, etc. Occasionally while writing, a scene will take the book in another direction so I will momentarily become a pantser. Then my Type A will kick back in and I will actually rewrite my timeline to accommodate the change!

Do you have any advice to new authors?

As I mentioned above, I do my research. I would advise new authors to do the same. It adds a richness to your writing that the reader will appreciate. Many new authors make the mistake of thinking, especially with erotic romance, that all the readers care about are the sex scenes, that simply is not true. The majority of romance readers are professional, educated women. They want a well-written story. To achieve this, you need to do your research. If you are going to write a Western, then go get some books on what life was like in the West, don’t just rely on old Hollywood films (they get allot wrong). If you want to write a contemporary where the hero is military then research about the military. Don’t just make the guy “Delta Force” and have him run around with a “gun” and call it a day. Make him a Captain of the Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 167 who pilots Supra Cobras and carries an M9 Beretta. See the difference?

What is the favorite thing that you’ve written?

So far, my favorite book is “His Dark Obsession”. It is about a wealthy, English lord who introduces an artist’s model into the seductive world of submission and discipline. Unfortunately for him, she is a headstrong American who does not simply fall into his arms. If he wants her, he will have to catch her. Oh…and she is suspected of being a murderess! So he might want to be careful.

One of the reasons why I love this book, is the photography angle. It was far more advanced in the Victorian era than people realized. They actually had small, handheld cameras not just those large, clunky, wooden boxes you see in the movies. It allowed me to explore the modern concept of sexually charged photographs in an historical setting which I believe made for a unique story.

What authors inspire your writing?

I was actually fortunate enough to recently work with several of them on an anthology that is releasing on January 24th, “The Dark Forest”. It is a collection of erotic fairytales featuring Alta Hensley, Tabitha Black, Maggie Ryan, Maren Smith, Addison Cain and Jennifer Bene. This was my first anthology and it was a fascinating process. The challenge of an anthology is to blend each author’s style and shall we say “kink niche” into one cohesive theme and I believe we did an excellent job. Each story is more unique than the last but they are so creative in how each author chose to twist the original fairytale into something seductively charming, dark and alluring.  

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The Dark Forest: A Collection of Erotic Fairytales Media Kit

Enjoy seven wicked tales from seven bestselling authors, each more deliciously deviant than the last!

Nothing is as it seems in our dark and twisted fairyland. Princes are not charming and the path to happily ever after is paved with creative punishments and supplication. Do not fret for our fair maidens. These are still fairytales. Love will conquer all in the end.

 BEAUTIFULLY PRIMAL

A Beauty and the Beast tale by Zoe Blake

A cursed maiden, a prince in disguise, a savage hunger that would not be denied. The hot tempered, independent daughter of a wealthy merchant, Beatrice the Beastly, as she was called by the villagers, would be tamed by no man. The curse be damned. Appearing before her as a stable master, Prince Rhys is determined to possess Beatrice on his terms. He will use her own wild nature to show her how beautifully primal love can be.  Will Beatrice respond to his rough handling or deny them both their destiny?

SLEEP, MY BEAUTY

A Sleeping Beauty story by Alta Hensley

Once upon a time, there were blue skies and bright sunrays.

But not today. Today the ash falls from the sky casting a thick layer of darkness and despair. The powerful Maleficent army is marching through the destroyed land collecting all the young women to add to his collection of sleeping beauties. There is no escape. There is nowhere to run.

Briar Rose has one choice. Submit or die. But when she meets her trainer, a sadistic and damaged man named Prince, she soon realizes that her choices are not so black and white.

In a world cast in an apocalyptic nightmare, is it possible for one woman to find her happily ever after

WOLFFE’S LITTLE RED

A Little Red Riding Hood story by Maggie Ryan

Regina Redd is a young professional woman during the week… and becomes Little Red when with her Dom/daddy, Drake Wolffe. On the day a red envelope arrives, the moment she lifts the embossed black seal, she knows the weekend ahead will require everything she has inside… her deepest desires will be met, her darkest needs fulfilled. You need not bring anything—everything you need shall be provided. Those are the words she reads… the ones that shall begin her journey. How will Master Wolffe guide his Little Red through this erotic, intimate journey to push her limits, to learn she can soar so much higher than she ever dreamed? An engraved invitation, a basket of ‘goodies’ and a cottage in the woods where her big bad Mr. Wolffe is waiting for his Little Red.

 SAVING ELLA

A Cinderella tale by Tabitha Black

Trapped in a life of endless drudgery and servitude for her stepmother and siblings, Ella has just one joy; her poster of the rock god Zainon Matthews. Every night before falling into an exhausted sleep, she gazes at his handsome face and wishes he would magically appear and whisk her away to a happily ever after. She has no idea how close she is to getting that wish… or the dark, sadistic desires Zainon will expose her to. As the saying goes: be careful what you wish for.

THE TOWER

A Rapunzel story by Jennifer Bene

Rebecca ‘Rapunzel’ Sinclair has spent her entire life in The Tower. A forty-two story monument to her father’s tech company where she lives and works, trying to be worthy of Daniel Sinclair’s incredible legacy. But while her father has kept her sheltered and safe, he has also made enemies, and when one of them rips Rapunzel from The Tower and takes her prisoner she is dropped into a nightmare of pain and pleasure. There are secrets this damned prince knows, and a dangerous history behind his motivations. As her masked captor works to break her down will she be able to face the darkness in her past, and the dangerous desires she’s discovering inside herself?

NIGHTMARES IN WONDERLAND

An Alice and Wonderland tale by Addison Cain

When darkness falls, Alice hears the tick-tock of the grandfather clock, and the hosts of Wonderland come out to play: the Red Queen soaked in blood, the laughing Madman of Cheshire, and a nasty pair of little boys who itch to bite and scratch. Of all who haunt Alice, one devil’s false friendship is far more insidious. The Hatter has all the power, loves to twist and taunt, and is eager to draw sweet Alice into a never-ending nightmare of degradation and fun. Tea anyone?

GOLDI IN CHAINS

A Goldilocks story by Maren Smith

She is an independent career woman with a penchant for the seamy underside of life. Her name is Goldi, and Goldi has always walked her own road. Including the road that led to her latest job. Breaking into that house was every bit as easy as she’d been led to believe. What it wasn’t, was empty and shifters (particularly were-bears) were not known to be forgiving. Now, trapped in the terrifying dark of their basement dungeon, Goldi knows she’s in for a long night of carefully exacted revenge. What she doesn’t know is which might be worse: the inevitable pain as they work in tandem to break her down… or the incredible pleasure that pain brings.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

ZOE BLAKE is a USA Today Bestselling author of historical erotic romance. Her new Ride Hard series in Western romance is filled with action, suspense and of course dominant cowboys and the feisty women they love.

ALTA HENSLEY is a USA Today Bestselling erotic romance author who has had #1 top-selling books in Dark, contemporary, BDSM, erotic science fiction, humor, and historical. She writes the naughty… and then the cure for it.

MAGGIE RYAN is a USA Today and International Bestselling author who loves to create worlds where strong women acknowledge their desire to submit and alpha males accept this incredible gift guiding their partners as they walk along the razor’s edge between pain and pleasure.

TABITHA BLACK is a USA Today Bestselling author who has been writing spanking and BDSM erotica for over a decade, and has no intention of giving it up any time soon.

JENNIFER BENE is a bestselling author of dark and devious erotica, paranormal romance, and other fun, kinky books. She loves wine, whiskey, BDSM, and keyboards – just not necessarily in that order.

ADDISON CAIN is the author of the bestselling Alpha’s Claim series. She has a penchant for dark themes and unrepentant lust. Heroes are villains, wrong is right, and concepts of obsession color her tales beyond simple black and white.

MAREN SMITH is a USA Today Bestselling author with more than 20 years’ worth of books in print. She is well known for both her slightly twisted sense of humor and her unhealthy love affair with coffee.

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The Cowboy’s Revenge

Ride Hard Series, Book One

When Mason caught sight of the beautiful woman with honey-brown hair and violet eyes, he could think of only one thing…revenge.

For three longs years during the War Between the States he was forced to wait to learn who had murdered his brother. The wait was over. He would take everything from the man; his wealth, his power…his daughter.

Annabelle was getting as far away from Vulture City, Arizona and her step-father as she could, even if she had to marry the boring banker’s son to do it. On the morning she planned to elope, a handsome stranger shows up claiming her step-father lost her in a poker game and she was now his.

She will fight him tooth and nail every step of the trail even as his punishments get harsher and more creative.

Ride Hard Series – Three Men, One Single Purpose

Three men who don’t give a damn about the War Between the States or that they were on the losing side. All they care about is it’s over…they can finally seek their revenge.

Contains anal play, domestic discipline, and creative cowboy-style punishments.

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After a chance encounter on a busy London street, Lord Pierce Warrington vowed she would be his…he just needed to learn her name.

As an American, Sarah Grey still had allot to learn about British society. She didn’t, however, need to be told handsome lords who handled you intimately and demanded to know your name were trouble.

She made her living as a model with Mrs. Mildred Needham’s Studio of Virtuous Young Beautiful Women Artist Models. While it was certainly better than a life in domestic service, sitting for painters and sculptors was not nearly as exciting as Sarah would have hoped. That is until Lord Pierce Warrington strolls in looking to hire a model.

Lord Warrington is highly influential in the new medium of photography. He decides Sarah is his perfect muse…and perfect for a little sinful seduction. Will she be willing to play his dark games? Will she understand his need to explore the delicate balance of pleasure and pain? To capture it on film? To capture her.

What starts as a dangerous seduction turns treacherous when an attempt is made on Sarah’s life. Will the enigmatic Lord Warrington’s games be the death of her?  

This book contains domestic discipline, spankings, creative punishments and anal play.

 

 

Zoe Blake

#1 Best Selling Author in Victorian/Historical Erotic Romance

USA Today Bestselling Author 

We are all attracted to the forbidden. Addicted to the rush we get from reading something naughty…something kinky. We love to lose ourselves in the fantasy. The powerful lord who sweeps the lady away to his remote estate to ravish her. The cowboy who takes the sassy city girl over his knee to teach her a lesson. The devilishly charming pirate who seduces his beautiful captive. I write those erotic fantasies.

 

The Submission of Little Emmie

Disciplining the Maid

Penelope’s Punishment

Chosen to be His Little Angeline

The Duke’s Possession

A Captive of Chance

Hero to Obey – Worth Fighting For

Papa’s Little Pain Princess

His Dark Obsession

The Cowboy’s Revenge 

Check out Zoe’s blog at http://www.zblakebooks.com

Twitter: @zblakebooks

 

Food fun with the Masters and Mercenaries: Lessons learned from lemon cupcakes!

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So, I am still hanging out in the kitchen with Ian and his love of lemon! I keep trying to move on, but Ian just won’t let me go. And you all know that what Ian wants, Ian gets. Today, I made his lemon cupcakes. I wanted to make the perfect looking cupcakes so that the pictures would be beautiful for my blog. Well, that might have been the case if I didn’t decide to completely over fill the cupcake pan. So, I ended up with cupcakes that taste wonderful, but look a little funny! Not perfect, but hell what is?

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So I started this part of my blog, because I wanted to do something a little fun, and I am a huge Lexi Blake fan. I love cookbooks, but in general I find it difficult to try new recipes because the authors always seem to think that I have hundreds of dollars to buy the ingredients. The truth is that I do not, and quite frankly will likely never use the ingredients again causing me to waste both food and money. I have fallen in love with this book because it has none of those problems. This is the third week that I have cooked from it and the majority of the ingredients that I need are things that I already have in my kitchen. (of course last week I had to buy those darn capers…lol)

Anyway, today I made Ian’s lemon cupcakes and they may not look perfect, but boy do they taste good.  The frosting is so good that I was eating it with a spoon. So I put my frosting in a Ziploc bag (redneck version of a piping bag), cut the tip off and attempted to frost my yummy cupcakes. (again not perfect looking, but oh so tasty!)

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So, lessons learned through lemon cupcakes?

1. Don’t overfill the cupcake tins

2. Cut the hole in the redneck piping bag smaller!

3. So what if they do not look perfect, they sure do taste great!

 

Have fun in the kitchen…keep calm and cook on!

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