Tuesday, June 30, 2009

TMI Tuesday

Okay, today I'm at a loss for what to blog about so it's the TMI Tuesday Meme for y'all. Since I like doing it anyway... you might see it more. It's just a matter of my dragging my sorry butt over to the site and getting the questions. With that said, here's today's:

1. How many speeding tickets have you had? Accidents? I've only ever had one speeding ticket, when I was 17. I got pulled over one other time, but my obviously pregnant body, and my tearful (and truthful) excuse of having to use the bathroom but not liking public toilets got me out of it. I've never seen a more horrified Highway Patrolman. I barely made it home in time, btw.

2. Boxers, briefs or commando? Umm... well... I don't wear any of those... lol. What do I prefer on a man? Boxer-briefs. :-D

3. Have you ever had sex in your office or your place of employment? Nope... but does sex behind your place of employment in a car count?

4. Do you or your so own a motorcycle? Do you ever ride one? Do you wear a helmet when you ride? I don't own one, neither does my SO... BUT, my dad and brother do. I've grown up riding Harleys. Yes, I ride whenever I can wheedle my dad into taking me. I absolutely wear a helmet... it's the law here in Nevada. Besides... without my brain bucket, there'd be a much bigger mess to clean up if we wiped out severely.

5. Ever been skinny dipping? Yes

Bonus: Ever been arrested? Turned someone in/had someone arrested? Never been arrested... never turned anyone in, or had anyone arrested... been tempted a few times. Never went through with it. I'm sure there were a few times that I should have... but I didn't.

So... what are your answers?

Monday, June 29, 2009

Author Interview ~ Yolanda Sfetsos

Alright, today on the couch we have the distince pleasure of an interview with multi-published author: Yolanda Sfetsos.

Welcome, Yolanda! Make yourself comfy, and we'll get right down to it. Yolanda, Where are you from?
I live in Sydney, Australia with my husband, daughter and kitty. A lot of the stories I write are either set in Sydney or in fictional suburbs I create, but mostly set in Oz.

What an interesting place to have first hand knowledge of! What book are you reading now?

Right now I’m making my way through my very long TBR pile. I’m about 100 pages in Jeanine Frosts’ latest. I love her Night Huntress series, and the third one – At Grave’s End – is awesome so far!

Hmmm... haven't read that one yet... maybe I'll have to add it to the TBR pile. What are your current projects?

This year I’ve decided to concentrate on longer stories, and have spent most of this year on novel revisions. I’ve got a bunch of novels in various stages of completion that I’m determined to finish.

Oohh. so we can look forward to some new stuff from you! Woot! Do you have any advice for other writers?

My only advice is to write your story and have fun with it. If you enjoy the story you’re writing and ignore your inner editor during the first draft, at the end you’ll end up with a finished story.

So, once you start writing, keep going and worry about revisions during the next few drafts. Otherwise you’ll get bogged down with specifics and will probably never get to the end.

That is great advice! How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

Oh gosh, I’ve written a lot of books – short and long. I’ve got over 20 eBooks currently available and many more in the process line.

As for which one is my favorite, I really can’t choose one because every single story I write affects me in a different way. Otherwise, I wouldn’t feel inspired to write it. ;)

LOL, okay, on to our "nothing to do with writing" questions: What animal do you think makes the best pet and why?

Well, I have a cat and I like to call him my writing buddy because he loves to hang around while I’m on the computer writing. He’s very relaxed, sleeps a lot during my writing time and loves to sit on the couch with me in between.

Well, then a cat it is... at least in your world. :-D Do you have any strange handwriting habits, like capitalizing all your “r”s or dotting your “I”s with heart (or anything like that)?

I tend to squish my letters too close together and dot all of my “I”s – even when they’re capitalized.

LOL, yeah... you're strange. :-D What is your heritage?

I was born in Madrid, Spain and migrated to Australia when I was seven years old.

Wow, so you have experience different cultures. Do you like thunderstorms?

Actually, I do. Thunderstorms happen a lot during summers here in Sydney and I enjoy a good afternoon thunderstorm, especially when the sun appears again afterwards. Oh, and thunderstorms at night are cozy – especially when you’re safe indoors.

I love 'em too. Do you sleep with the light on? Why or why not?

I mostly sleep with the light off but if I’m tired enough, I can sleep with the light on. Actually, I’ve done a bit of that lately. I’m usually so exhausted by the end of the day that it makes no difference. Lol.

And last but not least; Can you taste the difference between Pepsi and Coke? If so, which do you prefer?

Definitely! I only drink Coke Zero and Pepsi Max, but I prefer Coke Zero! It just tastes better.

Well, Yolanda, it was so wonderful to have you on our couch today. Thanks so much for stopping by to hang out with us today, and I hope we get to see you around more often.

Yolanda Sfetsos is an Aussie who loves to write tales of the otherworldly.

Mostly they fall under the category of paranormal and urban fantasy, but she does write in other genres too. Her muse doesn't like restrictions, and is quite happy to toe the dark edge of storytelling.

When she's not writing, she loves to spend time with her family. She also loves to go for walks, enjoys reading, cruising the Internet, watching movies, and TV shows - Supernatural, Doctor Who, Dexter, Torchwood, Burn Notice, and True Blood.

On the 18th of every month, you can read her post over at the RomErotica Writers blog.
Visit her at her website and her blog.

Sealed With A Demon's Kiss by Yolanda Sfetsos

Tamara is a pentagram witch who has been imprisoned by warlocks for five years. They want to use her power to conjure and bind a powerful demon, but she runs away a few days before their attempt.

Tyler is a demon who has lived with humans for too long. His latest mission is to keep a pentagram witch from the clutches of the warlocks. To protect her with his life, so his master won't be conjured and enslaved.

However, when their attraction gets in the way, Tyler isn't sure he can do what his master wants him to.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Book Video ~ Sealed With A Demon's Kiss by Yolanda Sfetsos

Sealed With A Demon's Kiss by Yolanda Sfetsos

Tamara is a pentagram witch who has been imprisoned by warlocks for five years. They want to use her power to conjure and bind a powerful demon, but she runs away a few days before their attempt.

Tyler is a demon who has lived with humans for too long. His latest mission is to keep a pentagram witch from the clutches of the warlocks. To protect her with his life, so his master won't be conjured and enslaved.

However, when their attraction gets in the way, Tyler isn't sure he can do what his master wants him to.


Want to see your book trailer here? Go here to find out how!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Friday Fun ~ Funny Picture

Okay, this one came from my best friend, Lu. Enjoy:

Why Trampolines Are Dangerous In Oregon!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

We Have a Winner...

Who knew so much goes into naming a story? Sheesh....

So, after a month (I can't believe it took that long!!) of brainstorming titles with my editor, we finally have a winner for my newly contracted story (formerly known as "Love Your Enemy").

::::drum roll::::

It will be called: "Shut Up and Kiss Me".

What drama. What an ordeal. I don't ever want to do that again. Well, until the next contract.


What about you? Do titles impact your decision to by a story?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

In Public?

YAY, I am back from my trip! Let me just say that sometimes... too much family is just too much family. Don't get me wrong, I love my family, but trying to keep 13 people happy all at once is a pain in the rear. Anyway...

I was around quite a few people at any given time... as you can imagine. And being as we were in the "Happiest Place On Earth" you can imagine that my super dirty mind... er muse... just ran with it:

"The happiest place on earth, huh? Do you really think they mean that? Because, you know as far as I'm concerned the happiest place on earth would have lots of..." and that's where I started ignoring her. :::Fingers in ears::: Lalalalalalala... I can't hear you! As you can guess that doesn't work so well when the person prattling on about sex in public is inside your head.

So, from that point on, I was on the lookout. For what? Why for places one could "hide" and have semi-public sex. Does that make me a bit twisted? Wait, don't answer that. I'm sure if my hubby knew what was going through my head he would have been on the lookout as well... and I would have been dragged into one of those spots. But seriously, can't you just imagine the scene? Maybe something like this:

The lights dimmed and suddenly despite the crowds around them, they were the only two in the entire park. The fireworks exploding overhead were special, just for the two of them.

He wrapped his arms around her waist, tugging her back against his much harder body. His fingers stroked the strip of skin exposed between the bottom of her shirt and the waistband of her jeans. A chill worked its way up her spine and down her arms at the sensual touch. She arched her back and rubbed her ass against his prominent erection.

He stepped backward with her safely enclosed in his arms until his back bumped up against the faux brick wall behind him.

"What are you doing?" she whispered as his calloused fingers dipped beneath the waistband of her jeans.

"What do you think I'm doing?" His breath in her ear sent a new chill coursing down her spine and had her nipples peaking against the lace bra beneath her cotton t-shirt. His seeking fingers pushed beneath the silk of her panties to brush against her heat.

"Someone might see!" She gasped, then whimpered as his seeking fingers brushed her erect clit. He ground the steel bar of his erection into her ass, and nipped at her ear.

"Everyone is looking up at the fireworks. No one will see." She glanced around at the people not three feet from where they stood in the shadows. When two of his fingers plunged into her wet sheath she gasped and rocked against his palm. "But, baby, you're gonna have to be quiet or they will all turn around and see me with my hand down your pants and know..."

She bit her lip and nodded, then cried out just as another explosion overhead drew oohs and aahs from the crowd in front of them.

What do you think? That could be a rather interesting scene... :-D Yeah, yeah, I know, I'm a great big tease. You'll just have to keep an eye out for that one to appear in a future work.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Author Interview ~ Colleen DuVall

Yay, I'm back! It's Monday and it's time for another author interview. Y'all know how much I love doing these... maybe because I'm just really nosey. Anyway, today, we have on our couch Colleen DuVall, recently published with Whispers Publishing. Let's get started:

Good morning, Colleen. Welcome to The Menagerie. I'd really like to know more about your work. Can you share a little of your current work with us?

I am finishing up a sequel to Witch's Kiss entitled, Sex Magicks. It takes place in New Orleans and there’s dark and steamy voodoo involved; I’m very excited about it...

I can tell! It sounds interesting, and I love NOLA, it's my other home. Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

Stephen King casts a magical spell with his writing that draws me in every time. All of his characters are people you could know and relate to. Some of their little sayings and quirks really make me laugh out loud.

Okay, I will admit right now, that I don't read Stephen King, he seriously creeps me out. And I guess that is the point, he's just that good. But...I can certainly understand the appeal. He does in fact write so well you feel what he is saying is completely believable. Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?

I will certainly find any excuse to travel to exotic locations. I very much enjoyed the Dracula Tour to Transylvania last Halloween!

Sounds like fun... maybe. LOL, What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I prefer writing longhand in journals first and transferring everything to the computer second.

Huh, I can sort of relate to that. I like to write out scenes that come to me in longhand, but usually it doesn't stay the same once it gets transferred to my computer. What does your family think of your writing?

They have always been extremely supportive.

That's good, it's nice to have people in your life who support you in what you do. What do you think makes a good story?

Characters that you care about.

Well, yes, that is definitely true. As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

An actress, an artist, and a writer. And I’ve wound up juggling some combination of the three ever since.

LOL, it's funny how that works. We make up our minds... but not really, and then we do a bit of all of it at some point. What were you doing at midnight last night?

Playing on my myspace page and watching old BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER episodes.

Oooooohhhhh, Buffy ROCKS! Spike was always my personal favorite. He just did bad so well, and when he went sort of good it was even better. Yum. What is your favorite animal?

I’ve got a soft spot for wolves.

Oh, me too, while not my favorite animal for a shapeshifter character, wolves are definitely in the top ten for me. What is your favorite pizza?

Canadian bacon with green olives- thin crust.

Hmmm... sounds like an interesting combo. Reminds me of Pepperoni and Black Olives... must be an aquired taste. Are you a morning person or a night person?

I am most definitely a creature of the night!

LOL, somehow I'm not surprised. Do you like thunderstorms?

Love ‘em. Talk about a passionate backdrop!

Again, I'm not really surprised. LOL, I do agree though... a very passionate backdrop.

Thank you so much for being with us here at The Menagerie. It was great fun, I hope you continue to come around.

A Witch's Kiss by Colleen DuVall

Kathleen is a restless, just turned thirty-year-old woman, longing for adventure in her life. Enter Cedric, a dashing, mysterious, older Brit who lures her into his web of shadowy secrets. They fall into an intense love affair, hurling Kathleen headfirst into a dark and sensuous world of taboo S&M pleasures and witchcraft. As she becomes emotionally and erotically addicted to him, she is forced to make a choice that could change her life forever as she knows it. Will she succumb completely to his "Witch's Kiss?"

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How... Embarassing...

Hee hee.. okay, I'm one of those people who doesn't really embarass easily. If anything, I can usually find humor in just about any situation. Maybe it has something to do with the completely insane family I came from. I think that my brain takes some things and just runs with them. Might be my writer's imagination.. might just be that I have a dirty mind that lives in the gutter most of the time.

Well, today I want to share something that happened to my husband and made me laugh until I cried and my stomach hurt. I guess technically it happened to both of us, but I don't really see it coming back to bite ME in the ass. *snicker*

Some of y'all know that my hubby has a very twisted sense of humor. In fact, my family has accused ME of corrupting HIM, when truthfully it was the other way around. They just never believe me... he looks like a freaking choir boy.

Well, the other day, my hubby was making a few phone calls. He was sitting at the computer and I heard him dial a number and then my cell phone went off... with HIS ring tone that is specific to his numbers. I turned in my chair and asked, "Why are you calling my cell phone from the house phone? I know where it is, it's in my purse."

He looked at me, very confused, "It's not me!" Now, color me confused, as he is the ONLY one that ring tone comes up for, granted it's three different numbers, but they're all his. I could see the light dawn on him as he reached into his pocket and found his cell phone... which had dialed mine. Yep, that's right, he'd bumped it with some part of his body and dialed my number.

"Wow!" He was laughing as he disconnected the call from his cell phone. "It's pretty bad when my penis dials your cell phone just to get closer to your mouth." I'm NOT kidding. I rolled my eyes and went to turn away, which was when I noticed he had a phone in each hand.

"Um, babe, did you dial that last number before your cell called mine?"

"Shit." Then he proceeded to ask for who he had originally called for. Did I mention that my husband is a Scout master and was calling one of his Scouts' homes to talk with him? No? Yeah, you can imagine the look of horror on my husband's face as he realized he was speaking to his Scout's much younger sister.

Is it bad of me that I laughed? I don't just mean a little chuckle... I mean it was a good thing I was already sitting down or I would have been rolling on the floor. I kept quiet until he hung up the phone...but once he hit the "OFF" button I laughed until it hurt. Then I calmed down, took one look at my hubby's face.. and laughed some more.

"Shit, I hope that doesn't come back to bite me in the ass." Yeah, me too.

So, how do you take embarassment? Do you laugh it off and move on? Do you wonder over and over what you could have said/done differently? Do you use it for fodder for your muse? I'd really like to know if I'm the only one who just doesn't take these things too seriously. Well, I hope you got a laugh, and that you realize that even when you inadvertantly proposition someone's sister that life goes on and most people have a sense of humor about these things. I still have no idea if his sister heard the whole conversation... but no one has shown up on our doorstep to arrest my hubby either. I'll take what I can get. :-D.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Author Interview ~ Aithne Jarretta

Today on the couch we have our good friend, Aithne Jarretta as our guest. Let's all give her a warm Menagerie welcome.

Welcome, Aithne, I'm so glad you could join us today. Let's get started with the easy questions: Where are you from?

I was born in Akron, Ohio. It’s the highest elevation point in the state. (Acropolis?) Why mention this? Well, now that I don’t live there anymore high hills always manage to appear in my stories.

LOL, funny how it works that way sometimes. When and why did you begin writing?

Every time I answer this question the time span has grown because I must go back in time to 2004. Once upon a time a metaphysical teacher set the task to her students ‘write a short story from the perspective of an object.’ Even in college I didn’t write ‘stories.’ So I sat down and wrote a short story from the pov of a Harry Potter book. Everyone in class loved it (had to read it to them—very shy…ugh! lol) and a writer was born.

OH, I don't know if I could have read it in front of anyone... I might have paid someone else to do it for me. I know, hard to believe if you know me. What inspired you to write your first book?

I had been writing fanfiction as a practice to improve my skills. Within that genre a family of (my) original characters emerged with their own history and life purpose.

My hero, Meekal Chilkwell in CONCENTRIC CIRCLES kept pestering me with a love story. He took my mind to the Chalice Well garden in Glastonbury, England and introduced me to his twin flame (of Love), Shayla Brinawell.

I simply couldn’t resist her spunky personality and her stubborn insistence to save Meekal during a time of great peril.

*snicker* Nice to know I'm not the only one with pesky characters. How did you come up with the title?

Lol! There were so many titles and none fit the story. One day I sat down and told myself I wasn’t getting up from my computer until I came up with something better. I just couldn’t figure out why none of them ‘felt’ right.

So, I poked through chapters (never had problems titling them! ;o) and the many images that I had saved during my research process.

Still nothing.

Then it hit me—there’s an image on my website (http://www.aithnejarretta.com) of the Chalice Well’s intricate cover…

I remembered that Meekal says it best. (from ch. 17: Silver & Gold Concentric Circles)

He opened the box. Cradled inside upon purple velvet lay a gold and silver pendant etched with the concentric circles of the Vesica Pisces Pool. The gold sparkled against his skin as he lifted the chain and held it for her to see. “The concentric circles mean many things to many people. When you came into my life, in that very moment at the Pool, I knew with certainty you were my matching circle. See the part where they are joined?”

She felt hypnotized by the vision of his hand laced with gold and silver. “Yes.”
“To me, that’s our hearts, beating as though one.”
She met his eyes. Her heart flipped.

I think I unintentionally answered this question, too… Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Love is the joining of two hearts and has the power to conquer all adversity. ;o)

Hey, you can answer as many questions as you want to, LOL. I love how the title just seemed right after all that angst. I guess that's just how it works sometimes. How much of the book is realistic?

This is the fun part! I love taking real places, a bit of history and blending them with fictional characters. The locations in CC are real, but I did add in a few fictional aspects because they blended in with my woven story.

The Chalice Well really does have healing properties and its legend goes back even before the Christians (Joseph of Arimathea) arrived on the shores of Briton. Everybody knows the Tor is there, but are they aware of the many (and powerful) ley lines that crisscross its location?

(Excerpt from ch. 3: Magical Bonds; Intertwined Souls)

On a rush of spiraling air, Meekal transported them to the top of St. Michael’s Tower on the Tor, facing west. “Don’t tell Mum I did that. She’ll have kittens.”
Shayla giggled. “How can no one see you when you do that?”

He shrugged, nonchalant. “A charm.”

A gasp popped up and Shayla clutched him tighter. “How?” She stared down at the empty air beneath them, and then waved her toe against nothing.

The urge to chuckle won out. “You didn’t think the tower had an upper floor, did you?”

“Never saw any pictures.” She backed up into his chest and gazed out the small gothic window. “Are we levitating?”

“Naw. I used to hang out up here when I was a kid. Harry and I figured out how to let the ley lines hold us up. Not the same as levitating.”


“Humm. You could say that you’re standing on the St. Michael Line. Although many ley lines crisscross here on the Tor, St. Michael is the strongest and most predominant.”

“I remember reading something about that,” Shayla said, and pointed through the narrow window. “St. Michael’s Line. That means, well since it’s October 31st, that mound where the sun is setting must be Burrowbridge Mump.”

“Aye. You do know a tad bit of history.”

“Just a tad.”

He wrapped his arms tightly around her and rested his jaw against the softness of her hair, just next her ear. Perfect fit.

During Meekal’s drive north in a saddened rush to return to his family’s origin, I accompanied him via Mapquest. (pretty cool writer’s tool) The destination, Fiunary Forest is real; however Raven’s Gate is hidden behind the magic of megaliths which are purely fictional. Alas, Raven’s Gate is pure fiction, too.

And Shayla’s favorite park? I hiked along those rocky trails of Gorge Park among towering cliffs and oaks for many years. There’s even a cameo line in CONCENTRIC CIRCLES that mentions the author in an off hand manner. *grin* No one will ever know. lol

But, see, you did the writer's job of mixing the fantasy and the reality. That's what we all aim for! What are your current projects?

I am currently working on the sequel of CONCENTRIC CIRCLES titled CIRCLE OF FIRE. It’s a time travel which introduces the past legacy of the Chilkwells to readers. (Meekal Chilkwell’s many times great grandfather.)

Wow, you'll have to let us know when it's ready to be released! Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

Lisa MacDonald. (Also writes as KyAnn Waters.) She was my critique partner and taught me so much.

OH, KyAnn rocks! It's great that you have such a wonderful cp. Do you see writing as a career?

Yes. It’s the one way I can express myself fully.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

Unedited excerpt from CIRCLE OF FIRE:

In this moment heroine Siusan must admit that several things have changed in her life journey—including her discovery of intimate feelings for Raven.

Alysha gave her a crock filled with soft soap. “Go through the crack in the craigh. Ye will find a fall of water there. Wash the dust of travel off.”

“Aye,” Siusan whispered.

She approached the sheer rocky craigh at the western end of the back dooryard with caution. The cavern was broad. Siusan realized the cool open space served to store food. The scent of apples tickled her senses, only then to be intermingled with the sharpness of garlic and onion.

The sound of falling water teased her ears as she walked past the stores of food. She followed the soft watery resonance around a large outcropping of rock, into another underground chamber. Her breath hitched.

Raven stood under the waterfall as it flowed into a pool. His black hair fell loose to the center of his back. Sensual power exuded from his firm muscular body. Across his shoulders and upper arms, he was painted with dark tattoos.

Siusan shivered. In continued surprise, she dropped her carved wooden comb. The sound echoed back from the surrounding stone and betrayed her presence.
Tattoos, she somehow managed to think when he turned.

Raven’s dark blue eyes looked black in the semi-dark cave. The flickering light from a torch, created dancing shadows. Their movement enhanced his wet body with golden tendrils of water down his shapely form.

He looked at her with boldness and continued breathing deeply. Instant arousal rose and heated the air. He stepped out of the water and approached. “Do not fear me. My name is just a name. Pernicious is an old family name. One we use every other generation so that we may always remember.” The water glistened on his skin like the sparkle of midnight stars.

Fluttering trembles swept through her. Siusan turned away, unable to speak. Her heart thrummed, the sensation traveled to her knees. The urge to flee became forefront in her mind. Immobile feet betrayed her.

“Siusan,” Raven said in a caressing inflection, “dinna leave. I will go.”
Raven’s voice played upon her, teasing with utmost heat of wildfire. She would not look at him.

Raven stepped closer. “Take your time,” he whispered with a breath across her cheek. “I will wait. When ye are ready.” The husky desire in his voice caressed them, reverberating from the stones.

Oh, that looks wonderful, can't wait. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

I always insist on writing villains because in my mind they are in direct opposition to Love. It still remains my most difficult task. Syther the Quitch, the villain in CONCENTRIC CIRCLES is really bad. That’s because I used an ageless quote in the book that had resonance with me…

“Where the Light is Brightest, the Shadows are Darkest.”

In order to fulfill that quote it was necessary to make Syther the Quitch a dark personality. His direct opposition to Meekal & Shayla (Light) was completely necessary, but challenging to write.

That is truly interesting. I can honestly say that some of my favorite characters have been the villains. They bring so much to the story. Do you have any advice for other writers?

Always write. Even if you’re struggling. I say this because the best characters can come from it.

Excellent advice. Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

I am forever grateful to Readers. Even in the age of the Internet I don’t think I can say this enough—Thank You! You make stories happen and give authors the opportunity to share their work.

I agree! Our readers are the reason we do it. Now for the "absolutely nothing to do with writing" questions: What animal do you think makes the best pet and why?

I actually love both cats and dogs. They appeal to me because their personality can bring love into our lives. My dog Cody has been my constant companion for many years. And my Arsi Rose is still a young ‘teenage’ cat who can be quite vocal at times. ;o)

LOL, well, then you're well-rounded. Do you hate how you look in pictures? Why or why not?

Absolutely hate it. Took me a long time to figure out why—it’s because I tend to tense up and then the camera catches me that way. Rigid as a board. That’s not my personality.

LOL, well... that's better than the open-mouthed, "HUH?" look my FIL always catches me with! What is your heritage?

Celtic and Native American. Both sides of my family have Cherokee mixed with their roots. We’ve also been here since the very early 1800s. Someday I’m going to write a story about it.

Hmm... sounds familiar! LOL Have you ever cried during a movie? If yes, which one and why?

Yes. I tend to cry in the weirdest places though and not just in romantic movies. So that’s my secret. The first time was when I was sixteen and saw Gone With the Wind in a theater. The moment? Scarlett’s demented father raced his horse and jumped a fence. He broke his neck even though he had jumped it many times during his life. Even then it symbolized broken and lost love because he lost his mind to grieving over his wife’s death and couldn’t bear the loss of his home, too.

Another weird moment that still catches me is the moment in The Da Vinci Code when John Langdon kneels in Paris over Mary Magdalene’s pyramid. Don’t ask—I still can’t figure it out. Lol!

Personally, I think the Davinci Code moment is like a knight paying homage to his Queen. At least that wasthe impression I always got from that part. Are you a morning person or a night person?

I love the time of day as the sun is beginning to set and the early part of the night.

And that is especially gorgeous when you'va had a bad day. Just makes it all worth it. Do you like thunderstorms?

Oh yes! The energy is awesome and thunderstorms have a cleansing effect like washIng away a bad day.

That is a wonderful way of putting it! Thank you so much for joining us today, Aithne. It was great fun having you here on the couch. Hmm... somehow that sounds dirty... sorry. Don't be a stranger!

You can visit Aithne at her website and blog. Don't miss her free read which she adds to on her blog.

Concentric Circles by Aithne Jarretta

Shrouded in the Mists of Avalon is a Hidden Legacy. Enter this mythical in-between realm of Power and discover... Syther the Quitch is angry. Someone new has arrived in Glastonbury, England. Shayla Brinawell carries many secrets. Destiny propels her path. Paths have twists... Magic astounds her. Death chases her. Love saves her. Meekal Magdal-eder Chilkwell, Chalice Well Guardian has always known his destiny. A protector of all that is good, even in the face of possible death, he insists on standing strong. Illicit evil looms, threatening to destroy Shayla s chance for love. She must come to terms of a lifetime of denying magic and fully embrace her power. Held captive within Syther s wicked plot, will Meekal escape the clutches of Shadow Run, Umbra of Darkness? Twin souls of light bonded in Love. Will their magic combine to protect the Sacred Waters of the Chalice Well? How will Shayla prevail and rescue her one true love?

Friday, June 12, 2009

Friday Fun!

And even more from my favorite boys in uniform:

Don't you just want to dance along with them? I do... and hey... I do! :-D Happy Friday.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Next Step: Promo

So... although I still don't have my contract yet (haven't been able to think of a suitable new title -- the one I thought up already exists at the publisher....almost... so I can't have it :::pouts:::), I'm trying to think ahead to the dreaded: PROMOTION.

What works?

What doesn't?

I've been stalking author Sandy Lender on her virtual book tour for her novel "Choices Meant for Gods" this past week... and will most likely continue to stalk her through the tour. Check out her cool banner:

The place putting her tour together, Goddess Fish Promotions, also has other tours and various "things" they do: trailers, banners, etc.

And this got me to thinking... do they work? I think the biggest thing to do is get your name out there. Get people to see you and network, etc. Banners are awesome and cover ads, too. Will you get a zillion sales off of them? Maybe not -- but people will SEE you and your cover and eventually (or at least I work this way) will be curious enough to check it and you out.


I love book trailers. Love watching them and they've, more than once, at least encouraged me to check out a book or short story further. Do I always buy? Nope... but sometimes I do.

I admit to being a pretty visual person, and bad covers really turn me off, so I'm praying to the cover gods for an awesome one. I admit that it's really, really hard for me to overcome an icky cover in order to buy a book -- even if it's come highly recommended from someone I trust.

Still...gotta focus...


What do YOU think works? Why do you buy a book (especially from a new-to-you author)?

I really, really want to know.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Packing... and Other Things...

So, I sit here looking at my house that is in complete and utter chaos right now. Not that it's a new state for us, it's just a bit more this time. Aside from the daily "stuff" that makes up the life of a family of 7 (if you count the dog... and we do) I am now in the middle of packing... and shopping and making sure we have everything we will need for a trip.

Yup, that's right, we're taking a trip... because I just love to torture myself. LOL But seriously, my mother (the amazing woman that she is) has been setting aside money for a bit now to do this. She decided that we all needed to go to Disneyland and Seaworld before my oldest and my older niece got too much older. Sooooo.... off we go this upcoming Saturday with our four children in tow. My sister and her hubby and two kids will also be joining us, and my mother begged my brother to let my niece join us on this trip as well. My ex-bil couldn't be reached or cooerced into letting us bring my other nephew... but he'll be missed and we wish we could have made it happen. So, 7 children.... 6 adults... not too bad a ratio. My oldest will be celebrating his 10th bday in the park and there are all sorts of goodies that go along with that. He's definitely not complaining that there won't be a "big party" here in town, he much prefers family in Disneyland any day.

My best friend and her two lovely daughters will be dog sitting for us (it helps that Harley adores them as much as they adore him). I can't say how much I appreciate the three of them. They started out as the mother and sister of one of my dance students and quickly became family. If we could swing it... they'd be going with us.

Anyway, I was sitting here looking at the PILES of clothing I have to fold and get packed for all of us... and that doesn't include the stuff that we haven't even bought yet. (i.e. sunscreen, sandals, swimsuits for oldest and myself, those protective shirts surfers wear to keep the sun from roasting them, since all my poor boys have my pale pale Irish skin. etc.) I look at all this stuff I have done and have yet to do... and I'm tired already and we haven't even left for the trip. I know we'll have fun, the kids see the world so much differently than us adults do, and I want to see these things through their eyes again. How much fun is that gonna be? I truly am excited about it... but the prep work is insane... I have to work ahead so my "peers" aren't left in the lurch while I am gone. I have to try and get the house cleaned up a bit... I hate coming back to a filthy home :::shudder:::

Anyway, I thought I'd share the cover the ladies over at Whipped Cream gave me for my short story they published this last week on their site. I like to do these shorts because they get me past my writer's block. And hey, they get my name out there, and I get to play around with scenes I might not try, but give me the experience to maybe add them one day. If that makes any sense... even if it doesn't it makes sense to me. :-) So, if you get a chance, stop on in and read my short story and let me know what you think. It was all a writing prompt by Marianne over our IM chat... and that was that. Hope you enjoy it.

See y'all on the flip side... or maybe not. LOL I'm feeling just a little bit...flutterbrained right now. Enjoy your day. :-D

Monday, June 8, 2009

Author Interview ~ Rhiannon Neeley

Today, on the couch, we have multi-published author, Rhiannon Neeley. Let's all give her a warm Menagerie welcome.

Welcome, Rhiannon, thanks for being here today. Let's start things off easy: Where are you from?

My ancestors came from County Tyrone, Ireland. I was born in Tonawanda, NY and have lived all over the Eastern United States. I now reside in the Midwest, in a small town in Ohio. I live along a slow moving river with my husband and son, my two daughters having already left the nest.

Irish girls ROCK! LOL, then again, I could be a bit biased. Why don't you tell us your latest news?

My latest news is I have three titles coming soon from Whispers Publishing. The first, due out in March, is a paranormal/weredog tale titled Harm’s Way. Sometimes putting yourself in Harm’s Way does more good than harm.

Coming soon from Whispers is Cottonwood Hill. A paranormal with gothic overtones, a haunted house, ghosts and bones in the backyard, Cottonwood Hill will give up its secrets to its new owner, Kelli Masters and Deputy Sheriff Glen Westfall who she calls on for help.

Another upcoming Whispers title is The Opposite of Normal. When ‘normal’ is just what you want, the ‘opposite’ may be just what you need. A paranormal/time-travel, The Opposite of Normal will take you through twists and turns when Carol Raper thinks the hero in the romance she’s reading has come to life and is living across the street from her. When people around begin to disappear, she calls on Bart Knight to help her solve the mystery of where everyone has gone.

Okay, I REALLY like that Harm's Way tagline! Those all look so interesting. Congrats on your publishing news. What are your current projects?

I’m working on two new titles: Awakened by the Dead, a paranormal and Bonding Camp, a contemporary. Both titles are about halfway finished. Do visit my website or Bebo site to keep up to date with what I’m working on:



Sounds great, I look forward to your new releases. Can you share a little of your current work with us?

Here is the blurb and an excerpt from Harm’s Way, coming from Whispers March 27, 2009…

“Leigh Zimmatore is bent on jump-starting her acting career when she lands a part in a film set in the English countryside, just outside the village of Haven-In-The-Glen. The place sounds lovely and inviting…until she learns the name of the cottage she’ll be living in during her stay. Stopping at the local pub, The Angel’s Wing, she is given the keys to the cottage—a cottage named Harm’s Way. She can’t imagine why anyone would name their home Harm’s Way and the irony of putting herself ‘in it’, in Harm’s Way, isn’t lost on her. And not only does the name of the cottage sound a bit daunting, the proprietor of the pub tells her of old wives’ tales of werewolves stalking the forest nearby. Leigh refuses to allow this information to shake her resolve. She’ll make a splash with this film…as long as she follows the director’s instructions. She’s never met him but when she does, he seems strangely familiar…very familiar, in fact.

Director Adam Colgan, though an American, has roots here in the English countryside. Deep roots. He feels at home here, feels able to be his true self for once and is able let his animalistic side rear its head. Meeting Leigh, beauty that she is, only serves to make his deep-seated desire to cut loose and let himself go almost impossible to control. But control it he must—until it becomes too wild to tame…”

Chapter One

Leigh Zimmatore arrived in the village of Haven-In-The-Glen at precisely 1:00 p.m. Saturday. The village itself was snuggled into a clearing centered in a massive forest. A picture of time gone by with its tiny houses and one and only pub—The Angel’s Wing—she felt she had stepped back in time by a few hundred years.

Odd name for a pub, Leigh thought as she parked the car directly across the lane from the front door. She’d had that same thought when Archie, her agent, had told her to stop there to retrieve the key to the house he had rented for her to stay in while in the village. But then, The Angel’s Wing did sound appropriate in a village dubbed ‘Haven-In-The-Glen’. Running her fingers through her hair, combing it into place with her nails, she questioned again the director’s choice about filming on location. From the looks of it, Haven-In-The-Glen was not ready for the world of feature films. Leigh would never question the director outright, though. In her line of business, the director was the law and to question his decision was a certain sentence to walk-on parts and crowd scenes.

This was her first starring role in a feature film and she was determined to make it the first of many.

She exited the car and stretched her arms over her head, surveying the main thoroughfare. “Not much going on here,” she said to herself. Then she smiled. “Maybe I’m just the one to liven the place up a bit.” She reached in through the open car window, snatched her bag off the seat, and strode across the lane toward the pub.

On the stoop in front of the door of the pub lay a large chestnut-colored dog. He looked harmless enough, but Leigh was cautious. She loved dogs, but she also knew not all of them were friendly. “Hello, pooch,” she said, walking slowly up to the reclining animal. “Will you let me by?”

The dog raised his massive head and looked at her with eyes of chocolate brown. He tilted his head to the side, then slowly rose to his feet.

Leigh knew it wasn’t good to stare into a dog’s eyes—they sometimes took it as a threat—but this dog seemed different. His eyes held an intelligence. Almost human-like. Leigh reached out her hand.

The dog raised his head and rubbed it across her palm.

“So silky,” Leigh said, her hand traveling smoothly over the dog’s head and across his shoulders. “Good boy.” She could swear she saw a twinkle in the animal’s eyes at her compliment. “I must go inside now.” She gave him a final stroke and stepped to the door of the pub. She glanced back at the dog.

He was watching her silently, head tilted as if trying to figure out some unanswered question.

“Good-bye, pooch,” Leigh said and turned back to the door.

She entered the pub, stopping just inside the door to let her eyes adjust to the dim light inside. The interior held the scent of ale, aftershave and pipe smoke. A man’s place. Able to see now that her eyes had adjusted to the gloom, she noticed the barkeep leaning on the bar and reading a paper. She crossed to him. “How can you read? This light is so dim.” She propped her foot on the foot rail that ran the length of the bar.

The barkeep looked up at her. “Help you?”

This one sure doesn’t have a sunny disposition. “I’m Leigh Zimmatore. I’m supposed to pick up a key for a rental cottage.”

“Humph,” the barkeep mumbled, then reached underneath the bar. He slapped a key down on the top of the bar. “The larder is stocked. Told the man who leased it there’d be two riding horses in the stable. They’re there. But if you ride, you’ll have to saddle them yourself. A boy’ll be by to see to the feeding of ‘em and such.”

“That I can do,” Leigh said, reaching for the key. She’d have to thank Archie. What a wonderful surprise to have horses to ride. She didn’t think her smile could get any wider. Maybe she could get in a ride this afternoon. Shooting started first thing Monday and she really wanted to enjoy the weekend before beginning the long hours of filming. “Tell me, sir, where is the cottage?”

“Follow the road south for a bit. There’ll be a lane on the left. It’s the only cottage on the lane.”

Leigh tapped the key on the bar. “How will I know if it’s the right lane?”

“There’s a sign.”

Leigh smirked. This is like extracting a tooth. “And…what will the sign say?”

“Harm’s Way.”

Ooooohhh... looks intriguing. How about this: Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?

The way to become a better writer, I’ve found, is to keep writing. The more I write, the more I learn about the business, about style and about myself. To keep writing is to keep learning your craft.

Now for our "Absolutely NOTHING to do with writing" questions. What animal do you think makes the best pet and why?

Well, I have two Cairn Terriers and I dearly love them both. Their names are Lucy Snoot and Wilder Snoot. They’re sweet little dogs who have so much energy! They don’t shed, they don’t have to go to the groomer (though they do have to be plucked once in a while…strange but true) and they are so much entertainment they’ll keep you busier than you can imagine.

LOL, they sound like a bit of a handful on top of it, but I can certainly relate tot he "plucking" when our shepherd sheds his winter coat we can pluck the tufts of hair right off of him. I know you sort of answered this above, but what is your heritage?

As I said above, my ancestors came from County Tyrone, Ireland. That’s on my mother’s side. On my father’s side, my ancestors came from Germany. I lean more toward the Irish side of the family though.

There's just something about an Irish/German family. Trust me, I know. LOL. What is your favorite pizza?

Pepperoni and mushroom, hands down.

Okay, I don't like the mushroom part, but that's just me. It's YOUR perfect pizza. Can you taste the difference between Pepsi and Coke? If so, which do you prefer?

Yes I can. I prefer Pepsi. Coke has more of a bite to it.

I too prefer Pepsi. I get upset if I have to drink Coke instead. If you could wish for anything, what would you wish for?

A secretary. I really would like to hire a secretary. LOL

ROTFLMAO, Wouldn't we ALL? Well, that's it for our interview today. Thank you so much, Rhiannon for being here with us today. I hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.

Rhiannon Neeley writes erotic romance in the contemporary, paranormal and suspense genres. Being a fan of anything paranormal, she loves vampires, ghost stories and things that can't quite be explained. Some of her favorite TV shows are Ghost Hunters, Monster Quest and anything that makes her question what is really out there.

Rhiannon also writes in the mainstream genre. Yellow Mountain, a novel inspired by a true story, is her first dip into the mainstream pool. Yellow Mountain is close to her heart...it is a book detailing a portion of her grandmother's life. Yellow Mountain will be released by Vintage Romance Publishing in September 2008.

If you would like to send an email to Rhiannon, send it here:

Rhiannon @ RhiannonNeeley.com

Cottonwood Hill by Rhiannon Neeley

For years Cottonwood Hill has loomed above the town of Oak Grove, abandoned but not forgotten, sleeping silently while keeping its secrets well hidden from prying eyes. Of course, nothing can sleep forever unless dead and Cottonwood Hill is far from dying. It lies dormant, waiting to awaken. Its time has come…

It’s a stroke of luck when Kelli Masters inherits the bulk of the Cottonwood Hill estate from a great aunt that she never knew existed. Determined not to look back, she and her daughter arrive at the house on the hill and vow to stay—no matter what. It doesn’t take long before their resolve to stay is shaken. Buried bones, ghostly images, and haunted closets are just the tip of the iceberg. Will Kelli and Sheriff Glen Westfall, the man she is determined not to be attracted to, be able to solve the mystery of the ancient estate or will they become part of it? Just who is stronger—the people who inhabit the estate or Cottonwood Hill itself?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Book Trailer ~ The Ravens Revisited Series by Rhiannon Neeley

Ravens Revisited Series by Rhiannon Neeley

Over 200 years ago, a Raven daughter was taken by a monster that walked the night. She was taken and turned...then destroyed by the family who loved her. After that day, The Unkindness of Ravens was formed and the battle began...

Now, in the 21st Century, the war still wages. The Unkindness continues on, known now as The Raven Clan. They fight hard and love even harder. And yet... The monsters still haunt the night. Forced to break into small groups called 'Clutches' to survive, the Horde of Vampires still exists.

For now...


Want to see your book trailer here? Go here to find out how!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Friday Funnies!

This one came from a dear friend:

Daddy Ate My Finger! (This will make you laugh)

This will make you smile!

This one is for everyone who....
a) has kids
b) had kids
c) was a kid
d) knows a kid
e) is going to have kids.
I guess that means all of us!!


I was packing for my business trip and my three year old daughter was having a wonderful time playing on the bed. At one point she said,'Daddy, look at this' , and stuck out two of her fingers.

Trying to keep her entertained, I reached out and stuck her tiny fingers in my mouth and said, 'Daddy's gonna eat your fingers,' pretending to eat them.

I went back to packing, looked up again and my daughter was standing on the bed staring at her fingers with a devastated look on her face.

I said, 'What's wrong, honey?'

She replied, 'What happened to my booger?'

Hee hee... bet it will make you think twice before you goof off with a child... *snicker*. Happy Friday!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Rose by Any Other Name....

So, my contract for the short story I submitted is pending the title change. The editor has requested I send her ten suggestions for a new title and given me some pretty specific guidelines to work within.

Have I mentioned that I HATE titling my work. If I had it my way, every story would simply be "Joe's Story" or "Millie's Story" or "The Story with the Purple Duck". And, yes, those are the kinds of working titles I use because I stink at thinking up titles.

So now, with the carrot of a contract hanging just in front of my nose, I have to think of a clever title for my story and I haven't the first clue. I have a slightly warped sense of humor, and the first thing that popped into my head was "What About B.O.B.?" but I'm pretty sure that one won't work.


In any case, I know what I'll be doing today.

What about you? Are you good at titling your work? And, how much does a clever title impact your decision about buying a book?

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

My Turn for a Free Read

So, I sent the ladies over at Whipped Cream another short story. I love doing them, they're such a quick way to get past a block, or to let my muse go in a different direction for an hour or so, so that she'll go back to where I want her to concentrate. Anyway, they accepted it and it willl be published this Thursday. Which is fortuitous, as that's my birthday. Happy Birthday to me! LOL

Nope, I don't have a cover yet, or a link, although I think the link is the same until it gets moved to the archives. I just wanted to let everyone know so you can take a looksie on Thursday.

I actually love doing these so much that I poked one of my crit partners and practically dared her to do one... and she did. LOL So, I'm gonna dare all y'all to do it too.... come on, you can do it! It's a fun exercise and it will get your creative juices flowing, PROMISE! You can go here to see their submission guidelines. They're always looking for new stories. You can even read the past submissions to get an idea of what they look for, here, the archives are at the bottom of the page.

As for my editing and writing, it's actually moving along pretty well. Might have something to do with the fact that I've finally figured out a sort-of schedule that works for me... and my muse. While I didn't quite meet my self-imposed deadline of submission by the end of May... I will get submitted before I go out of town. :-D

Hope everyone is having a wonderful week so far... and if you're not I hope it gets better.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Author Interview ~ Katina Abram

Today has been a long day... already. So I think this author is REALLY brave to join us here on the couch at The Menagerie. Let's get started. Please welcome, Katina Abram.

Welcome to our madhouse, Katina. Make yourself comfortable. Where are you from?

You would swear another universe. But no, from Oregon and Washington, which can seem like another universe. Hmm, the weirdness explained.

LOL, yup that sort of explains it. So, tell us your latest news.

I reached level 29 on plunder at big fish games. Hmm. There's a collaboration between playing games versus writing done. Huh. Needs more research, yes, I should keep playing.

LOL, it's a conspiracy... the men are affraid we'll tell the women that this is what they should be looking for. When and why did you begin writing?

Eight years old, and I think because I always wanted to be a writer, and a rock star and a private detective. I'm tune deaf and can't detect, so good thing I can do one of those.

Absolutely a good thing... it's what you need to do. When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I sold the first short story. Actually, gave the first away and sold the second, but who cares. It was publication in a e-zine no one has heard of that probably doesn't exist, but again, who cares? It's publication. Whee.

I can certainly relate to that, that's when it happened for me too. How did you come up with the title?

I tried to sound romancy. Forbidden passion. And the next one, dark supers, (maybe,) because the super heroes have darker powers. I had always heard that the title would be changed, so I just called it something to save it under and the publishing company (whispers, the awesomest) has been wonderful about letting the authors have creative administration powers over their books.

LOL, sounds great.Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

In dark supers, the darker superheroes are looked down on, and she looks down on herself a bit, but they still are just as good as anyone around them, yes "believe in yourself and blah blah blah) is a bit cliched, and I normally hate clichés, but a lot of people will hate you for no good reason. Ignore them.

That's a good philosophy to have. How much of the book is realistic?

Obviously, almost none of it. If I want reality I'll look out a window thanks. I read for something more than plain life.

LOL, sometiems that's just what you have to do. Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Forbidden passion was based a little bit on me ( I have déjà vu powers, who doesn't?) but mostly I write non realistically.

What books have most influenced your life most?

I love Tanith Lee's fantasy, Doris Pierschia, and thousands of others. I'm quite the bookworm.

Me too, I guess I'll have to find these authors... if I haven't already. LOL If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?

Tanith lee, maybe, because her books were good reads with great prose, though lawernce block wrote a erotica book a month, so it would probably be him. I mean, a book a month? National novel writing month (50,000 words in November, look it up) kicked my butt, and he did this every month for years? Awesome!

Wow, sounds amazing. What book are you reading now?

A Sophia Kinsella, Lawernce Block and Meg Cabot. I can't limit myself to one when there's a library nearby.

I never limit myself, I usually have at least three books going at once... sometims more. Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?

Sophia kinsella. Her shopaholic series is so far funny, light, and well paced. I started with confessions on an undomestic goddess, which was just great. Meg cabot writes young adult, but this is my favorite genre and she does it well, with a real kickbutt heroine, in the mediator series.

Hmmm... I don't think I've read these.. but maybe I should start. What are your current projects?

Two comedies, a fantasy, and lots more erotica.

Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

Coffee count? No? then the plot pirates of Newport from nanowrimo. This was my first year writing with others, and it went well, meeting in libraries and coffe houses and dessert. I love dessert.

Sounds like a great group of friends to have in your corner. Do you see writing as a career?

Oh I hope so. When I make enough money, that will change to h--- yes. And a thank you Jesus.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

Nope. Way to far back in time. I do remember my parents sitting down with me and going over the alphabet. Make sure your kids can read! And volunteer to help others. Their the future readers of our books.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

"That's a lovely dress you have on," Chad said lovingly. He leaned cautiously on the table.

"Do you like it?" Sheila asked, smoothing it out as she sat down next to him, shoving his sister out of the way with her hip.

"I have never seen anything so beautiful in my life." Chad replied, looking into her eyes.

"That's my dress," his sister snarled. "I wore it last year."

"Mean? Mean?" his sister repeated, soaking her dress liberally in soda and salt. "You should have seen him at my fifteenth birthday party. I. Looked. Gorgeous." Julie emphasized every word. "And do you know what happened? My false breast sprung a leak. That's right, a leak. Right at the duke of Conning. I just stood there and watched this arc of fluid spring forth and deflate an otherwise perfect set of men catchers. I was stuck entertaining guests for another two hours. With one boob! I looked like a Picasso painting come to life before I was done." Julie's face was red with memories. (from the cursed prince, coming next.)

Looks like a fun read. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Spelling. I type very, very fast and make lots of mistakes. Also, all authors know what is going on and have to make sure they have left a scene out or been misunderstood, because the reader doesn't know what they know.

I think most of us who type fast have that problem. Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

Gosh, I have so many, and what strikes me most is of course how much I enjoy reading them. pacing, plot, the one liners! It's all so good.

Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?

um. Occasionally I want to run out of the house and fine a nice quiet corner. Thankfully, I volunteer with a local fire department and often hide out there. So, a couple of miles a month or so, I would say, since I also write in libraries, star bucks and places that serve dessert. I have an alphasmart, absolutely recommend it for writers. I love it.

Who designed the covers?

Whispers art staff. They did a great job, considering I sent them this crappy picture from Microsoft paint program. I love the colors and the design.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?

Re editing. They say everyone does it, but in dark supers I completely moved several chapters. A major headache and added some, then had to go back over and make sure what they said matched up to where they were in the story. Definitely, the hardest part for me is getting right in regards to spelling and tenses. Ugh!

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?

The great feeling of finishing something so difficult. Feelings of success come rarely in life, especially when you see how little a beginner author makes, but still. For a while, there a success feeling, and that wham of joy when a publishing company offers you the contract.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Keep plugging at it. Try different things. Everyone says it, and if you don’t' have a book yet, you still need it.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

My blog has a contest. Buy the book, and tell me what you'd like to see in the next one. Note, it has to be a honest critique, not a vague 'me no like. Me get money now?' if you think the lack of names is annoying, or too much narration in an action scene, drop me a line and you're almost guaranteed to be a winner for your money back.

Sounds pretty simple. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

Didn't you ask me something similar? Ah, my deja vu powers again. He he. Impressive yes? Um, I don't remember that far back in time, too young, sorry. I always wanted to be one, probably since I could read, who knows why at that age. also, I wanted to fly an alien space ship for almost as long. Probably why I like sci fi.

I dunno, probably, I didn't prepare the questions, LOL. How long does it take you to write a book?

A couple of months normally, though it's hard to tell when I constantly get distracted by the next got to write it now book.

What is your work schedule like when you're writing?

Off and on.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I flop out somewhere comfortable with the old alphasmart and type. Also, I daydream quite a bit, and run plots through my head, so it's a lot fo staring into space. Oh wait the question asks for interesting quirks, ah, skip. I'm dull.

When did you write your first book and how old were you?

Ten years ago, and I'm old enough not to want to say. Somewhere in the thirties range, with a lot of half finished books, but they all helped me to improve and learn better writing. But going by book, meaning done, somewhere around ten years, sure let's go with that.

What do you like to do when you're not writing?

Firefighting, jogging, reading, lots of reading, tv watching and playing computer games. Way too much tv watching and computer games.

What is your strangest habit?

I like broccoli with sugar and pepper. Who likes vegetables, for heaven's sake? And with toppings like that? It's like a Scooby doo thing.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?

My sister's cooking. It has damaged my taste buds to the point I prefer the taste of aspirin to almost anything she cooks. Mind you, this was when she first started, and I made some horrible whoppers myself when learning to cook. You should defrost chicken before you fry it. Just a hint. Does not work so well when the ice melts and takes the coating with it before it all goes black. And still raw.

What do you want to know about the future?

When will it all end and do I have enough time to write enough books by then?

Have you ever cried during a movie? If yes, which one and why?

Everyone has cried over bambi since we're kids when we see it, but what counts was 'nightmare before Christmas'. Jack wants a better life so bad, and yet he's not very good at it. It's tragic. It's everyone. When they shoot the sleigh and he lands in the cemetery, I get teary eyed.

What is your favorite pizza?

Chicken barbeque from papa murphys. It's a small town, we're lucky to have them. and the pizza doesn't have gobs of pasty tomato sauce, but smoky barbeque and sharp mild onions and so much cheese.

What stereotype would you label yourself as?


Lord of the Hunt by Katina Abram

The Hunt race is a non-human species that move between their world and the earth effortlessly. Generations of Hunt have found their mates from earth females as they only have male offspring. When a Hunt finds his mate, he must claim her within two red moon cycles. A Hunt without his mate faces death and madness. Unique to the Hunt is the curse- a mating ceremony that is described as 'hell on earth' as the mate experiences agony at the first mating. Only after this is she claimed by her Hunt lord a week later, forever ensuring the procreation of the species.

Leon, as the Lord of the Hunt, has found Dana who will be his mate. Having witnessed what the Hunt mating had meant to his sister-in-law, he wishes no pain for his mate. To ensure the future of his race, he is passionate and ruthless in wooing his mate. Keeping her on the edge of torment, he plays her body with the skill that leaves her overwhelmed. Their meetings are fraught with high emotion and a sensual interplay with Leon very clearly the master. His sexual advances test Dana to the limit, but she succumbs to her attraction for him despite her virginal fears and wishes to be his mate.

Will she ever be ready for the claiming that is marked by the curse? Will her body cope with Leon's relentless, dark passion and his claiming? The Lord of the Hunt will brook no refusal. Only the claiming night will show whether Dana survives the curse of the Hunt mates.