Friday, December 23, 2016

Decadent Decem-brr Reads Kindle Giveaway!

Welcome to the Decadent Decem-brr Reads
Kindle Giveaway! 

·GRAND PRIZE – Kindle eReader + $15 Amazon gift card
·1st PRIZE – $50 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·2nd PRIZE – $25 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·3rd PRIZE – $10 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·4th PRIZE – $5 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·5th Various swag items (3 winners – US only)

And please join our FaceBook Party for more chances to win!

Find my name (Jana Richards) on the list of newsletters and subscribe to my newsletter for your chance to win!

Contest open from December 1 - 31, 2016!

Friday, December 16, 2016

#MistletoeHop Naughty or Nice?

Welcome to my blog! The theme of this year’s hop is naughty or nice – which kind of author am I? And which is more fun?

If we’re talking about my personality, of course I’m nice! If we’re talking about my books, I’d say they’re mostly nice, too. Heroes to fall in love with and heroines to cheer for. But I haven’t forgotten the naughtiness!

Take my heroine Meg from A LONG WAY FROM EDEN; she’s definitely a heroine to cheer for. She’s had it tough. After an unplanned teenage pregnancy and an abusive marriage, she runs for her life with her young son. She works hard to make a good life for them. For seventeen years, her only goal is to keep her son safe. To protect him, she makes up an elaborate story about how his father, his parents and her parents all died in a plane crash. But the lie starts to unravel when her son Tom and his girlfriend Erin discover they’re having a baby and Tom decides he wants to learn more about his own past. Meg faces another crisis when she finds herself falling in love with Zane, Erin’s father. She hasn’t had good experiences with love and sex and it takes a strong, loving man to help her find her way. I love Meg because she’s a survivor and a warrior, and though she’s had some tough times in her life, she hasn’t lost her compassion or her ability to love.

My books have a little naughtiness, and enough spice to give them some heat. And like I said, my heroes are men to fall in love with. Finn Cooper from THE GIRL MOST LIKELY knows Cara is the one for him as soon as he meets her. But Cara is hung up on numbers – the one on her scale and the one on her calendar. She thinks she’s too fat, and at eight years his senior, she believes she’s too old for him, too. But none of that matters to Finn; he thinks she’s perfect the way she is. Finn’s persistence and his ability to look beneath the surface to the person inside has always made him a favorite of mine. That, and as Cara says, his “to die for” good looks!

Alex McKenzie from ONE MORE SECOND CHANCE is another swoon-worthy hero. He’s a dedicated doctor who’s working on contract in a small town in order to pay off his medical school debt. His plan is to fulfill his contract and then go back to his real life in San Diego. He doesn’t count on falling in love with the high school principal, Julia Stewart. Or her beautiful six-year-old daughter Ava. He’s even falling in love with the small town and the kind of medicine he does there. But Julia’s marriage taught her that men don’t stay. Alex has to work hard for her to give him, and love, a second chance. But he does because he knows she’s worth it. I love the compassion Alex shows his patients, and the way little Ava wraps him around her finger. There’s nothing sexier than a man who loves children.

These are a few of my nice characters. Sometimes they're a little (or a lot) naughty, but they're always fun. I think you’ll love the books because they’re good stories. As for me, sometimes it's fun to put the nice girl on the sidelines and bring out my naughty side! Merry Christmas!

Enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win some great prizes. The Mistletop Hop ends on December 20, and I'll be picking the winners sometime after that and posting their names here by December 23. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Decadent Decem-brr Reads Giveaway!

Welcome to the Decadent Decem-brr Reads
Kindle Giveaway! 

·GRAND PRIZE – Kindle eReader + $15 Amazon gift card
·1st PRIZE – $50 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·2nd PRIZE – $25 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·3rd PRIZE – $10 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·4th PRIZE – $5 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·5th Various swag items (3 winners – US only)

And please join our FaceBook Party for more chances to win!

Find my name (Jana Richards) on the list of newsletters and subscribe to my newsletter for your chance to win!

Contest open from December 1 - 31, 2016!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

K.K. Weil tells an Embarrassing Story!

K.K. Weil is my guest today and I'm excited because she's here with an embarrassing story for Amazing Story Wednesdays. I love embarrassing stories, especially when they happen to someone else! This story is one told by her character James Garrison from BETTER TO GIVE. I can't wait to hear your story, James!

What’s my most embarrassing moment? Well, as a dad of eight-year-old twins who publicly argue over just about anything, I’ve got plenty. Off the top of my head, I’d have to say the one that stands out the most would be the day I met Jenna.

It was my first four-day weekend alone with my children since my divorce was finalized. The kids were running amuck in my apartment. All I wanted to do was find something fun to keep them occupied, and keep them from destroying every piece of furniture I owned, at the same time. I found what I thought would be the perfect activity. My town was having a party at the community center to kick off the holiday season. What better way to let my kids expend some energy than building gingerbread houses and putting decorations on a Christmas tree?

For a while, everything was okay. I mean, don’t get me wrong, Maggie and Blake still ran around like two headless chickens. But so did every other kid, hyped up on sugar and the promise of holiday treats.

Then I saw it – a Christmas tree decorated with index cards instead of ornaments. Each card had the age and gender of a child in need, for whom you could buy a present. This was just what my kids needed. A little giving in their lives instead of receiving.

I called them over, all ready to be Dad of the Year with my great idea. Instead, my kids bickered over who would pick the card. In case it wasn’t bad enough that they were making a scene over what was supposed to be a charitable moment, my daughter shoved my son into a little girl.

For a second, everything moved in slow motion. I watched as the girl started to fall headfirst into the index-card-adorned tree. I watched as her mother caught her, seconds before she made contact. And I watched as her mother, with eyes as pale as ice, gave me the most chilling glare I’ve ever received.

Have you ever wanted to crawl under a rock so badly your skin itched? That’s how I felt at my lack of control over my kids. I mean, seriously, who has so much trouble managing their own children for a minute that they can’t do some charity without impaling someone else? Since there were no rocks around, I apologized to the woman.

But here came problem number two.

The woman had no interest in accepting my apology. She shot me some snarky remarks about my bad parenting. I should have left it there. I should have just muttered a last ‘I’m sorry’, and walked away. Instead, something held me. It might have been the black lashes that surrounded her pale blue eyes. Or it might have been the fact that she looked like she didn’t give a damn what anyone thought, dressed like she just came from a workout when everyone else was dressed to the nines. Or it might have been the long, sleek, black ponytail hanging down her back. Regardless, instead of becoming offended by her nasty comments, I flirted with her.

What embarrassed me more, you might ask? My children’s poor behavior or the fact that I was attracted to a woman who wanted nothing more than to tear me apart? It probably should have been the latter. However, there was something behind those ice cold eyes that told me I might not be alone in my reaction…

Maybe embarrassing moments aren’t always so bad.
- James Garrison, Better to Give


For most people, the holidays are a time of warmth, happiness and celebration. But to Jenna Samuels, they mean only one thing. Mounting debt. A single mother, Jenna struggles to make ends meet and to her, it’s a season of excess and distress.

James Garrison is in over his head, too. His ex-wife said he wasn’t equipped to take care of his twins, and now that he’s got joint custody, he fears she was right. They’re wild, spoiled, and always fighting. When they knock Jenna’s daughter into the “Gifting Tree,”—a part of their town’s charity collection—the parents are immediately attracted to each other. But James has had his fill of cold women and Jenna won’t make the mistake of falling for another man who disappears when life gets too heavy.

As their paths cross, James and Jenna must decide whether first impressions are accurate, or if sometimes, people are not what you assume at all.

Amazon –


I needed some air. I just attacked a man for no good reason. Sure, one of his kids almost send Nora tumbling into a tree, but I could tell he was overwhelmed and I pounced anyway.

While his kids fought, the guy covered his face with his hands - the international sign for losing parental control. As he removed his hands, though, an awful thing happened. I got a good look at him and heat ran through every crevice of my body. No one should be as handsome as that guy was. Plus, I always had a thing for guys who were in over their heads, and he was definitely drowning with those kids.

I hadn’t reacted that way to a guy in a long time and I didn’t want to. My life was on track. I didn’t need some annoyingly smoky-hot, anti-super-dad screwing up my plans.

It was a problem because he clearly enjoyed the view, too. I knew what guys were thinking when they looked at me, and spoke to me, that way. When I mixed the way he was engrossed in me with my reaction to him, plans got derailed and things like Nora happened. Those smouldery guys don’t stick around once the Noras of the world arrive. So even though they’re still scorching hot, they no longer act like you are.

They disappear.

At least that was my experience. One I didn’t intend to repeat.

Author Bio:

K.K. Weil grew up in Queens, but eventually moved to New York City, the inspiration for many of her stories. Weil, who attended SUNY Albany as an undergrad and NYU as a graduate student, is a former teacher. She now enjoys writing her own dramas and lives near the beach in New Jersey, where she is at work on her next novel.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Friday, December 2, 2016

An Interview with Author Erin Bevan!

Today is Friday and that means it's time for an interview with another interesting and talented author! My guest today is Erin Bevan and she's here to talk about her new holiday release, among other things. Please welcome Erin Bevan!

Where did you get the idea for your new novel, WRAPPED UP IN YOU?

I’m not really sure.  I remember reading a Christmas story and it got me in the spirit of writing my own Christmas story. I then basically combined The Santa Claus with The Selection and came up with a new and different twist to the North Pole!

Why did you choose this genre?

This Christmas story falls more in the line of sweet romance. Honestly, I wanted to give them a little something extra in the end, but my editor cut the scene. So, my somewhat spicy turned to more on the sweeter side. I’m okay with that. Maybe now, Hallmark will come knocking on my door! I could only wish.

Was there anything unusual, any anecdote about this book you’d like to share?

Maybe not unusual, but I did recruit the help of my daughter when I envisioned the North Pole. She told me the North Pole would have trees with jewels on it. So, I added trees with jewels.

That's very sweet, Erin! What was the most difficult thing about writing this book? 

My pilot has amnesia. That was very difficult. I would forget he couldn’t remember things. There were many rewrites of him rejoicing over recalling memories.

Do you have any unusual writing habits?

I procrastinate. Oh, but I don’t think that is very unusual for a writer.

What do you want readers to come away with after they read WRAPPED UP IN YOU?

I just want them to come away with a light, feel-good kind of feeling.

What genre have you never written that you’d like to write?

Something in the paranormal realm. Paranormal would expand my mind and my muse for sure.

If you could change something about one of your books that’s already released, what would it be?

I would change Cupid’s Angels. I would make Ellie’s reason for dating Robert much stronger. I know what the reason would be, but I won’t tell you. When I get the book back in a few years, I will make the changes, however, I don’t want to give it away!

Do you work on more than one book at a time?

Yes. Not always because I want to, but because I have to. I finish one book, send it off, then start on another one. In the middle of book two, my editor will send me revisions for book one, and so on. I’ve had up to three projects going at once. I don’t do well with that. I like one thing at a time, but that never happens.

Do you have any words of advice to beginning writers?

Absolutely do not stop. No one wins by quitting. Ever.

Tell us a bit about you. Where do you live, and how long have you been writing? 
I live in the Houston area. I’ve been writing for five years now, and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. If I can help it at least.

If writing is your first passion, what is your second?

I’m not really sure. Probably shopping!

Do you have another occupation, other than writer? If so, what is it? Does it help you with your writing?

I’m a mother. I have three small children, and they keep my extremely busy. Most people think working is hard. Stay home with children. Hardest job ever! But, my kids do give me inspiration for my stories. And they help keep things real.

I remember those days, Erin. A very tough job! How do you think your life experiences have prepared you for writing?

I don’t. I wing this each and every day and pray I don’t look like a total phony.

If you could get rid of something in your life that would give you more writing time, what would it be? 


What are your hobbies away from the computer? 

Working out, shopping, eating. I do love eating. Driving through the Starbucks drive thru, or any drive thru for that matter.

Name two authors we might find you reading when taking a break from your own writing.

Lori Wilde, Mary Kay Andrews

How can readers reach you or find you online?

Tell us a little about your current work in progress.

I’m working on something very different from sweet Christmas romance! I’m working on a biker club sequel. Hard men, big Harley’s, need I say more?

What’s your tagline? Why did you choose it?

Erin Bevan
Author of Women’s Romance
I chose it because it’s pretty vague. I write for women. Sometimes I write sweet, and sometimes I write not so sweet.

If I was a first time reader of your books, which one would you recommend I start with and why? 

Wedding Day. It’s probably the best written so far, and it walks the line of sweet and steamy. Some of my books are very sweet. In the future some will be steamy. I want readers aware of that.

Tell us a little more about your current release. 

WRAPPED UP IN YOU released on November 30. It’s a sweet Christmas romance about the North Pole. Santa’s daughter, and an amnesiac pilot.

Is there anything we haven’t covered here that you’d like to tell readers?

I love to laugh, I love to have a good time, and I love when people engage with me on my Facebook author page. So, go, please like me!

Author Bio:

Erin Bevan was born and raised in Southwest Arkansas. She spent her teenage years working for her aunt at the local gas station, flipping burgers and making milkshakes, dreaming of the day when something better would come her way.

Fast forward ten years later, she found herself stuck inside an apartment in South Korea, while her daughter went to preschool and her husband went to work. Alone and unable to speak the local language, she turned to books for friendship. After reading several in such a short time, she decided to try her hand at writing one.

That first one sucked, but by the fifth and sixth book, Erin started to get the hang of this writing thing. Getting the first contract in her inbox was a dream come true. Now, with three babies at home, she squeezes in stories one word at a time, one sentence at a time, one day at a time.  She’s a full time mom, a full time wife, with a little writer sprinkled in whenever she can get the chance.
Twitter: @ErinBevan


Princess Jenny Claus has thirty suitors to choose from to take on the role of Santa and her husband, and only three weeks to do it. When an outsider crashes into and destroys the toy factory, her Gala and the prospect of Christmas for children everywhere are ruined.

Logan Moss awakens from his plane crash, suffering from partial amnesia. Surrounded by a world he always considered make believe, he has a hard time accepting his new surroundings. Except for one snow princess who he’s deeply fascinated with. And when Logan realizes she only has three weeks to pick a husband, he begins to feel compelled to be that man. Problem is, he can’t remember if he has a wife.

With Christmas getting closer, Jenny has to make the hardest decision of her life...duty or love.


She gazed over the rest of his physique. Broad shoulders strained the stitches of his suit jacket, and from the looks of his chest, she would be willing to bet he hit North Pole Fitness on a daily basis. His grin showed snow-white, straight teeth, and a blush crept up her cheeks at his sparkling, undivided attention.

An answered prayer. At least God hadn’t taken a vacation day.

Her eye twitched again. Benigan must have  thought she winked at him because his smile widened, and he twitched his eye back at her as he strolled away. She’d probably just filled the man with false hope. Then again, his chances seemed pretty great compared to the others, so maybe she hadn’t. Was this small flutter in her stomach love? Was this what all the hype was about?

She’d expected a bolt of lightning to shoot from the sky, something earth shattering that would flip her whole world on its head to point her in the right direction. So far, all she got was a flutter…

A loud BOOM suddenly shook throughout the cottage walls as the lights flickered overhead.
Okay, that was definitely earth shattering.

She sucked in a breath and spun around to glance  at her parents. The orchestra stopped playing while the party guests ceased their mingling and began speaking in startled cries and hushed tones.
Her father stood from his white and gold throne to place his hand on the small of her back.

“Dad, what do you think that was?” she whispered.

“I don’t know.”

Sirens wailed in the distance as Peace and Joy, her father’s assistants, ran for the stage, each pressing a finger to their ear pieces.

“Ladies, what’s wrong? What’s happening?” her father asked.

“It’s the toy factory, sir,” Peace replied, nearly breathless.

“The toy factory? What about the toy factory?” Jenny grabbed her father’s arm and squeezed.

“A plane has crashed into it,” Joy answered.  “It’s on fire.”

Buy Links:


The Wild Rose Press:

Barnes and Noble:

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Decadent Decem-brr Reads Giveaway!

Welcome to the Decadent Decem-brr Reads
Kindle Giveaway! 

·GRAND PRIZE – Kindle eReader + $15 Amazon gift card
·1st PRIZE – $50 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·2nd PRIZE – $25 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·3rd PRIZE – $10 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·4th PRIZE – $5 Amazon gift card (1 winner)
·5th Various swag items (3 winners – US only)

And please join our FaceBook Party for more chances to win!

Find my name on the Rafflecopter under "Newsletters". Subscribe to my newsletter for your chance to win!

Contest runs from December 1 - 31, 2016!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Mary Patterson Thornburg: Clothes Make the Character

Fellow Uncial Press author Mary Patterson Thornburg is my guest today on Clothes Make the Character Monday. She's going to talk about what clothes mean to her characters. Welcome Mary!

"Clothes make the man" is one of those old sayings you have to respect even though you'd like to argue with it. According to my Google search, it's been traced to everybody from Shakespeare to Mark Twain, and it supposedly means something like "You can tell who a person is from the way that person is dressed."

I want to say, "No, no, no! Clothes are all on the surface! Clothes are not even the surface, they're just something draped over the surface! You don't know what's beneath the clothes, beneath the skin, inside the skull, under the breastbone! It could all be a costume, a disguise!" And of course, I'd be right; it could all be a disguise. But then I remember, the surface is all you can see at first. Sometimes it's all you ever see. So, when it comes to real people, I guess the saying is right even though it's probably wrong at the same time.

But what about characters in fiction? Do clothes make the character? I think that in some cases they definitely do. Because fictional characters aren't real people until the author who wrote them and the reader who reads them work the magic together that makes them real. And part of what the author does, at least in some instances, is to choose the character's clothes.

Until I'd given this some thought, I'd have said I don't pay much attention to my characters' clothes. Oh, yes, in my story "Ghosts," it's the young girl's Hallowe'en costume that shocks and disturbs her mother and has a different effect on her friends than the one she'd expected. But then, when I thought about it, I realized that clothes do play an important part in "making" some of my characters.

There's a character in one novel, which I haven't really published yet, who's dressed like this when the main character sees him for the first time:

The person was a boy, younger by the looks of him than his voice had sounded, wearing a pair of tight, sky-blue trousers and a short tunic that was embroidered closely with gleaming silver thread. Around his neck was an ornate metal collar set with multicolored jewels.

The boy's clothes, all the spangles and jewelry, absolutely scream wealth, vanity, and a certain immature lack of taste, even though the people in his world wouldn't find his costume as weird as the people in our world would. This boy turns out to be a nicer person than he first seems to be, but he never quite loses his sense of dramatizing himself by his selection of clothes. It's part of who he is, down deep inside, under the things he wears.

In my book A Glimmer of Guile, clothing plays an important role when the heroine, Vivia, deliberately uses it to make herself look in complete contrast to a woman she's about to go up against in a psychic fight to the finish. Vivia's in her early twenties, small and dark, and not particularly beautiful. The other woman is much older, tall, majestic, and very beautiful (although her beauty is something of a magic trick). Vivia wants to make her jealous, so she presents herself accordingly:

I bathed and dressed quickly in my favorite of the new outfits, another tunic suit, pale lemon-colored linen with a snug, short top and wide-legged trousers. No jewelry. I braided my hair tightly and pulled the braids back into a fountain that hung nearly to my waist. I wanted to look as young and as innocent as possible, as much in contrast to Orath as I could. I wanted her to be jealous; I wanted her to be angry. I was dressed to do battle.

And finally, in The Kura, I had to let readers know something about the main character, Alyssha, early on. Alyssha lives in our world, in Indiana, and in our time. But she's been in another world and she misses it terribly – her missing that world is what defines her life. She's eighteen, a high school senior, at an age when most young people would hardly be caught dead wearing clothes that will set them totally apart from every group, every other individual, in their community. Moreover, she's already different from them all in a way she didn't choose and can't control; she's of mixed race, raised by a poor, white, overprotective father, and she doesn't really fit in anywhere. So it says something very important about her that she chooses to make herself even more different by her choice of clothing:

She went into her bedroom and took from the old-fashioned wardrobe a matching tunic and trousers in light, puckered cotton, with a wide neckline, loose sleeves, and legs tight at the ankles. The outfit was copper-colored, just a bit lighter and brighter than her skin, and she knew she looked good in it. Mattie Hale, who owned a boutique, had made several similar outfits for her, modeled on the one she'd worn when she returned from the place old Mike had called Underland. Nobody else in Granville dressed this way, and she knew what her schoolmates' looks meant, but she didn't care. For six years she'd been homesick. This was how people dressed in Bandor, and it felt good to her.

So, readers, what do you learn about the people in a story from the way they dress? And, writers, how do you use your characters' clothes to make them into real, individual people?


For six years, Alyssha's been torn between her loyalty and love for her widowed father, the promise she made to him that she'd stay in his world, and her longing for the other world she visited for a summer when she was twelve. She found a home there, and the brother she thought she'd lost forever, and a boy who loved her, who would in these six years have become a young man, as she's become a woman. And now, when a hit-and-run victim found dying on a Granville street says her name and gives a policeman a strange object from that other place that can only mean trouble and danger, Alyssha has no choice but to go back.

When she gets there, she finds that a lot has changed…


Mary Patterson Thornburg was born in California, grew up in Washington State, moved to Montana when she was 18, and spent many years in Indiana, where she studied and then taught at Ball State University.

Her dream was always to write fantasy stories and novels, but she didn't get started until she and her husband moved back to Montana in 1998. When she'd finished her first story and it was published, she took off running and never looked back. She's had stories in Cicada, Zahir, The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, and Strange, Weird, and Wonderful, among other places. Two of her short stories earned honorable mention in The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror (2006, 2008), and "Niam's Tale," in the July/August 2010 Cicada, won the SCBWI 2011 Magazine Merit Honor Certificate. Her first fantasy/romance/adventure novel, A Glimmer of Guile, was published by Uncial Press in 2014. Her second book for Uncial, The Kura, came out in April, 2015. An Uncial Novel Byte, "Ghosts," was released October 14, 2016.




Twitter: @MaryPThornburg


Monday, November 21, 2016

#AuthorInterview with Chrys Fey

Romantic suspense author Chrys Fey sits down for an interview today. She's here to talk about her newly released novella 30 Seconds Before. She also talks about changing plans when life throws you lemons. Thanks for being my guest, Chrys!

Where did you get the idea for your new novella?

Well, it was pretty easy. I published 30 Seconds, a romantic-suspense novella, about a woman in the middle of a war between a police force and the Mob. Afterward, readers asked about what Blake went through before the story began. That got me thinking, and I just had to write that story. 30 Seconds Before takes place days before 30 Seconds, follows Blake while he’s undercover in the Mob, and ends right where 30 Seconds begins.

If you could change something about one of your books that’s already released, what would it be?

I would combine 30 Seconds Before and 30 Seconds into one book. But since 30 Seconds Before is in Blake’s perspective, his story would be Part 1. And since 30 Seconds is in Dani’s perspective, her story would be Part 2. The book for these combined stories would have the umbrella title of…30 Seconds.

What do you hope readers gain from your stories?

I want them to walk away feeling entertained and as though they’ve made a few friends. I think being part of a reader’s life, for as long as it takes them to read the story, is precious. Entertaining them and making them feel like a member of your book’s family is a gift.

What’s one thing that your readers would be surprised to learn about you? 

I had wanted to be a cop, but when I had spine surgery at fifteen to correct severe scoliosis, that dream went away. I can’t move the same as I did before, and I certainly can’t do the things cops need to do while on duty. But I get to pretend I’m a cop through my writing.

If writing is your first passion, what is your second?

Photography. Wherever I go, I love to take pictures, or I see things that I would love to capture with a camera. I especially love to photograph nature. If I wasn’t writing, I’d be pursing photography.

If you could get rid of something in your life that would give you more writing time, what would it be?

Sleep. But then again, I love to sleep. I don’t think I could give it up, after all. Dreams give me most of my story ideas. However, all the time I waste sleeping in, because I can’t drag myself out of bed, would be better spent writing.

Name two authors we might find you reading when taking a break from your own writing.

J.D. Robb and her infinite In Death Series, or Janet Evanovich and her hilarious Stephanie Plum Series.

What do you like best about your hero? 

Blake is a hero through and through…He’s a cop for the Cleveland Police Force, and his last name is Herro. I couldn’t make a man more of a hero than Blake if I tried.

How do you choose the names and physical characteristics of your characters? Do you base them on real people?

As I said in my previous answer, Blake’s last name is Herro because he’s a hero. Although, it’s supposed to be pronounced as He-Are-Row. I got his first name from a street sign, which is where I’ve gotten a lot of character names. And I tend to craft my characters’ looks after actors. For Blake, I envisioned Paul Walker. (RIP)

What’s your tagline? Why did you choose it?

Thrilling and Romantic with Heroines of Steel.
I chose this as my tagline because all of my stories have suspense and romance. 30 Seconds Before is the exception as there’s no romance. There also isn’t a heroine, but usually my heroines are tough cookies.

Steel also is a nod toward the rod in my back from my spine surgery. I once wrote an essay about my surgery titled “Woman of Steel,” and all of my heroines are as strong as steel.

Title: 30 Seconds Before (Prequel to 30 Seconds)
Genre: Mainstream Thriller
Page Count: 60 (novella)
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press


Blake Herro is a cop in the Cleveland Police Force. Ever since he was a child he wanted to do right by the city he loved by cleaning up the streets and protecting its citizens. Red, a notorious mobster, has other plans.

On a bitter December night, ten police officers are drawn into a trap and killed by Red’s followers. Blake wants to bring down the Mob to avenge his fallen brothers and to prevent other cops from being murdered. Except the only way he can do that is by infiltrating the Mob.

Every minute he’s with these mobsters he’s in danger. Around every corner lies the threat of coming face to face with a gun. Will he make it out of the Mob alive or will he be their next victim?



Blake’s gaze continued to scan the area. Too many officers needed help. Blake 
strained his eyes to see if the nearest officer was still breathing, but the darkness and 
flashing lights obscured his vision. 

Dread was ripe in his veins, twining his intestines into knots. The assailants who attacked the officers could be lurking nearby, watching and putting him in their sights. Being out in the open with nothing but his Kevlar vest as protection was not where he wanted to be, but the officer he was helping would bleed out if he moved.

Blake studied the officer. His lips were an unnatural shade of blue. He was shivering from the frigid December night as well as blood loss.

“Did you see them?” Blake asked. “Do you know who did this?” 

The officer’s lips moved. 

Blake leaned forward, bringing his ear to the officer’s mouth. “What was that?”

The officer took a shuddering breath. “Red.”


Chrys Fey is the author of the Disaster Crimes Series (Hurricane Crimes and Seismic Crimes), as well as these releases from The Wild Rose Press: 30 Seconds, Ghost of Death, and Witch of Death. She is an administrator for the Insecure Writer's Support Group and heads their monthly newsletter.


Wednesday, November 16, 2016

#NewRelease with Sharon Buchbinder

Author Sharon Buchbinder is with me today to celebrate the release of  her paranormal fantasy romance THE HAUNTING OF HOTEL LABELLE. I wish you the best of luck with with your new book, Sharon!

The Haunting of Hotel LaBelle
by Sharon Buchbinder

Modern day woman, Tallulah Thompson, is the only person to see lost in limbo, “Love ‘em and Leave ‘em Lucius” Stewart in over a century. There’s a way to release him from the spell, but will reversing the curse make things better—or worse?


When hotel inspector, Tallulah Thompson, is called in along with her pug, Franny, to investigate renovation delays, she meets an extremely annoyed and dapper turn-of-the-century innkeeper. The only problem is he’s in limbo, neither dead nor alive, and Tallulah and the pug are the first to see him in a hundred years. Cursed by a medicine woman, “Love ‘em and Leave ‘em Lucius” Stewart is stuck between worlds until he finds his true love and gives her his heart. When he first sees Tallulah, he doesn’t know what he’s feeling. Yet, her stunning beauty, and feisty attitude pull him in. With the fate of Hotel LaBelle on the line, Tallulah with the help of a powerful medicine woman turns Lucius back into a flesh and blood man. She and Lucius team up to save the hotel, but Tallulah can't help but wonder if he will ever let go of his past love and learn to love again.

 An in-between book in the Jinni Hunter Series, this is a lighter paranormal tale than the others. Take one Montana innkeeper from an era when men were men and women were glad of it, one sassy hotel in  spector with a pug on patrol, and stir in a generous dollop of humor and sexual tension—and you have The Haunting of Hotel LaBelle. Come along to Big Sky Country and enjoy the ride with Tallulah, Lucius, Bert, and his sister, Emma as they join forces to rescue the people and the hotel they love.


A book flew at his head—and sailed through him, bouncing off the wall and landing on the floor.

Mouth agape, the woman stared from him to the book and back to him again. “You’re a ghost.”

“Not exactly. Shall we start over?” He leaned against the wall and folded his arms across his chest. “After a hundred years of being invisible to everyone except you, I’d like to know who you are and what you’re doing here.”

“Of course. Why not? Could today get any weirder?” She sank into the desk chair, shook her head, and sighed. “My name is Tallulah Thompson. I’m a hotel inspector, hired by the current owner as a consultant to find out why the renovations are delayed and what he needs to do to fix it. He’s teetering on the brink of bankruptcy.”

“What tribe are you?”

She jerked her head up and those doggone lapis lazuli eyes of hers sparked as if she’d strike him with lightning and kill him with one look. “No one asks that. It’s not politically correct.”

“Well, I guess you haven’t been talking to the right people. And I don’t know what you mean by that last part. I’ve never been involved in politics.”

“Nowadays, it’s considered rude to ask about another person’s national origins.” She threw her hands up. “Why am I giving a ghost an etiquette lesson? What am I thinking?”

World-wide Release Date: 11-16-2016

First Fantasy Rose Edition, 2016
Print ISBN 978-1-5092-1153-1
Digital ISBN 978-1-5092-1154-8

Digital Price: $3.99 USD
Print Price: $12.99 USD

Pre-Order/Buy Links: 


Barnes & Noble





Author Bio:

Sharon Buchbinder has been writing fiction since middle school and has the rejection slips to prove it. An RN, she provided health care delivery, became a researcher, association executive, and obtained a PhD in Public Health. When not teaching or writing, she can be found fishing, walking her dogs, or breaking bread and laughing with family and friends in Baltimore, MD and Punta Gorda, FL.

Author Links:

Facebook: Sharon Buchbinder Romance Author

Twitter ID @sbuchbinder

Goodreads author page

Monday, November 14, 2016

Sorchia DuBois and The Persistent BFF

It's Secondary Monday! I love a good secondary character and today's guest has a very interesting one. Sorchia DuBois is here to tell us how her heroine's best friend nearly took over her book and her series! Welcome Sorchia!

The Persistent BFF: A Secondary Character Who Nearly Took Over 
Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones

I’m a planning type of writer. I like to have the skeleton of a story in a working outline before I start writing. I’ll mull over the plot and write character charts for weeks before I get down to writing. Some call this procrastination—and I won’t argue—but it is a necessary step for me. Somewhere towards the middle, I trash the outline. At that point—anything can happen. This is the story of how one character made me chuck that outline a little sooner than usual.

Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones is the first book in a three-book series. Writing a series gives me the opportunity to develop a number of main characters. Over three books I can explore the psyches of Zoraida the protagonist, no fewer than three potential love interests, as well as a couple of nasty villains. And it means that I have the luxury of developing some secondary characters along the way.

Zhu Morgan is a Chinese American who grew up in Arkansas. She and Zoraida have been besties since kindergarten. Though I knew I would develop Zhu more than—say, the waitress at the local cafĂ©—I didn’t anticipate what happened. My plan was to use Zhu as a sounding board—a way to further the plot and show character through dialogue. But Zhu wasn’t satisfied with that. She wormed her way into the story and soon I realized the friendship between these two women had to be a driving force.

Beta readers loved the friendship and wanted more, so I wrote Zhu into additional scenes. She developed habits and desires and quirks just as endearing (to me, at least) as those I wound into Zoraida’s character. Zhu doesn’t always agree with Zoraida and she isn’t afraid to say so. She began to react to the mess she and Zoraida land in and, because of Zhu’s perspective and quirky attitude, Zoraida has to think harder about how to handle the problem. Zoraida can’t predict what Zhu is going to do next and neither can I.

But a story is all about conflict, so even though Zoraida and Zhu are steadfast friends, events and people they meet will challenge their devotion to each other.  What, I asked myself, could challenge a friendship between two people who have grown as close as Zhu and Zoraida? Maybe a man? Maybe two men? Maybe a disagreement that leads to danger for one or the other? Maybe each woman has a goal but those goals seem to be at odds? Maybe some unexpected twists?

All of those things threaten to wedge Zhu and Zoraida apart. But they have more to worry about than their friendship. Each one must make hard decisions in order to survive. Getting out of Castle Logan alive won’t be easy.

So important has Zhu become to the Zoraida Grey Series, that I plan to devote the first half of book 3-Zoraida Grey and the Pictish Runes—to Zhu. At least, that’s what the outline says, but you know me and outlines!

The Blurb, Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones

Granny’s dying, but Zoraida can save her with a magic crystal of smoky quartz. Too bad the crystal is in Scotland––in a haunted castle––guarded by mind-reading, psychopathic sorcerers.

Getting inside Castle Logan is easy. Getting out––not so much. Before she can snatch the stone, Zoraida stumbles into a family feud, uncovers a wicked ancient curse, and finds herself ensorcelled by not one but two handsome Scottish witches. Up to their necks in family intrigue and smack-dab in the middle of a simmering clan war, Zoraida and her best friend Zhu discover Granny hasn’t told them everything.

Not by a long shot.


He smiles with white teeth, his cheeks dimpling, his gaze moving from face to face, intimate with each person. The crowd titters, hanging on his words. He wears a gray jacket and trousers and a white shirt. The neck of the shirt is casually open, revealing a curl of dark hair.

A shimmer of magic like the barely-noticed buzz of a gnat brushes my cheek. I recognize an attraction spell when I feel one. Even Zhu is mesmerized, a dopey look pasted on her face as if she’s just eaten the last piece of Chocolate Mud cake. What is he up to? Why would he bother to cast such a spell only to impress a bunch of tourists?

I note the crowd’s rapt attention, note how Michael Logan’s black eyes twinkle as he speaks, how nicely he fills out the white shirt and gray trousers. His eyes do reflect the stone’s smoky depths. Ensorcellment weakens my will. That is the purpose of the spell—a mesmerizing, seductive blend.

I am not used to being enchanted. It feels oily, cloying, but as unyielding as the stone walls of Castle Logan.

Near panic, I cast my senses afield, searching for something to ground me and free me from this uncanny feeling. Anger bubbles in time with the song of the Healing Stone. Just who the hell does he think he is?

The now perpetual prickling on the back of my neck shifts into high gear. Another set of black eyes watches me from the outer doors. As if splashed in the face with cold water, I forget Michael Logan’s hypnotic voice and handsome face. The younger Logan, still angry if I’m any judge of tight lips and frowning eyebrows, pins me to the spot with a suspicious glare. The gray cat weaves around his legs, and he lifts her into his arms, scratching her ears. His eyes never soften and never waver from mine. Questions ricochet in my mind, but they are not my questions. They are his.

The buy links:


Wild Rose Press

Barns and Noble


Sorchia's Social Media Links:


Author Bio:

I live in southern Missouri waaay back in the woods. It’s a beautiful spot, but quite a distance from civilization. The nearest shopping center of any size is 100 miles away though smaller ones exist closer—30 miles or so. I’m actually considering moving out of the area. Looking for a nice place to go, but haven’t landed on a new location yet. Suggestions appreciated.

I taught English at local high schools, community colleges, and online for many years, but writing is what I really wanted to do when I grew up. About 5 years ago, I decided it was do or die time and I haven’t questioned that decision. This is one reason I’m thinking of moving—the writing community around here is sparse and it’s a long way to book signings and conventions.

I have a couple of grown kids who come home occasionally to eat and to do laundry.  Eight cats and a husband live in my house, also.