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Mellanie Szereto: An Introvert’s Guide to Lockdown (AKA Yay! I Have an Excuse to Stay Home!) (FREE Reads)
Friday, March 27th, 2020

Hello there! I’m Mellanie Szereto—author of (currently) 28 romances, baker of bread and pies, gardener of vegetables, hiker of woods, and master of introverting.

Are you going stir-crazy from social distancing yet? So far, I’m not. As a full-time writer who lives in the country, social distancing is a way of life!

Have you taken advantage of the free and 99-cent books while you’re trapped at home? I have quite a few waiting for me as rewards for meeting my writing goals. Books are a wonderful way to escape when you need a break, but even more so when you’re in a forced timeout!

Goals… Having people in my space during writing time for two weeks and counting has required a major adjustment. Indefinite Christmas break—that’s what teach-and-learn-from-home classes have turned into at my house. Hubby (The Professor) and son (The College Student) are now spread across the living room, the family room, and the makeshift upstairs office with two desks, one of which I won’t be using while The Professor is up there. He talks to himself and anyone else in the room as he works. Science nerd. What can you do? This is not the ideal situation for someone who prefers quiet during writing time.

How am I adjusting? The writing hasn’t developed a new routine yet, but I’ve put a book on sale for 99 cents, released a super-steamy romantic suspense short story last week, and set up an automated welcome email to new newsletter subscribers with links to two free short stories—the new one and another that’s also available for sale. (Hint-hint. Find the links below!) I’ve also shared my process for writing series with an author who will be teaching a class on that topic, updated my website, gotten a cover for one of my summer releases (see below!!!), and listened to a podcast that helped me better define the characters of a five-book novella rom-com series I’m working on. It’s forward progress, and that’s what counts!

I have plenty of stories to finish writing over the next few months and enough ideas to last several years, so I just need to work the kinks out of the domestic chaos. You should see my to-write, to finish, to rewrite, to-edit list! It runs the gamut of romance sub-genres and heat levels, from contemporary to historical to paranormal to romantic suspense and warm to hot to super steamy. Because I’ve found myself at the midpoint of my fifties (How did that happen???), I’m drawn to writing older (over 40) characters more and more as well. Oh, and nerds. See mention of The Professor above. 🙂

How about some of my favorite lines from the new release/newsletter freebie, my 99-cent-sale book, my cover-reveal book, and a couple of my works-in-progress?

Mad About You

Jessamine Youngblood (heroine) to herself from Mad About You (new short story) ~ Can I get away with murder on my wedding day?

Jessamine Youngblood is getting married today. Or is she? She’s having second thoughts even before Maddox, her sexy ex-con ex-husband, crashes her wedding-breakup preparations. Trouble follows him when her soon-to-be ex-fiancée makes a surprise visit—one that threatens their reunion and promises far more danger and gunfire than she expects.

Newsletter Amazon Apple B&N Google Kobo

Love Served Hot

Alice Carlton (secondary character at Montgomery Crossing Retirement Village) to Flynn Hastings (hero who is a chef) from Love Served Hot (book 1 of the Love on the Menu series) ~ “There’re sheets to set on fire and a happily-ever-after to wrangle into submission.”

Lilith Montgomery has hired a hot Irish chef whose culinary creations give her foodgasms. Keeping the heat in the kitchen is going to be tough. Falling head over stockpot for his new boss wasn’t part of his plan, but Flynn Hastings finds himself experimenting with a new recipe for love.

First in series! Only 99 cents!
Amazon Apple B&N Google Kobo

Cover Reveal!!! Release date ~ July 15, 2020

Hot Tamale Nights

Carmen Valero (teenage daughter of heroine) to Kyle Morton (hero) from Hot Tamale Nights (book 3 of the Love on the Menu series) ~ “See? You’re my father.”

Entrepreneur Kyle Morton has a keen eye for investments, but pumping capital into an ex-lover’s business generates more conflict than he bargained for—and his longstanding grudge doesn’t have a leg to stand on. Aside from his constant pursuit of the next monetary venture, his motives shift from retribution for her betrayal to admission of his true feelings. The girl who claims to be his daughter further complicates a matter that should’ve been simple revenge.

Her children and Hot Tamale fill the once-empty hole in Isabel Valero’s heart. Or do they? The love of her life challenges that assumption and brings chaos when he invades her restaurant, especially with her ragtag family’s objections to his tendency to take over. Then his business enemies become her enemies and put them all at risk, despite his vow to protect them. Now their future together could burn to the ground again—permanently.

**Sneak peeks at my older woman/younger man novella rom-com series!**
Five women between the ages of 42 and 50 bond over fiction, food, and being single at the weekly meetings of The Homegrown Café Book Club.
Coming this summer to an e-reader near you!

Big Jim Cochon (hero who is a pig farmer) to himself after re-meeting his best friend’s older sister and his lifetime crush, Tate Madison (heroine who owns The Homegrown Café), from Makin’ Bacon (book 1) ~ If you don’t want the woman of your dreams to think you’re a redneck, don’t wear manure-covered work boots, bib overalls, and ragged plaid flannel to introduce yourself. And leave the cruddy John Deere cap in the pickup.

Riley Fenniman (heroine who loves stilettos and the f-word) in a chance meeting with Deacon Jeffries (hero who is her accountant) on the sidewalk after another offer from her cousin’s lawyer to buy part of her farm from The Farmer Takes a Husband (book 2) ~Late October air kissed her bare face, arms, and calves as Riley exited the building, cooling her body temperature if not her irritation. “Fucking menopause.”
“Who pissed you off this time?” Amusement colored the question, the only not-some-shade of-beige part of the man’s entire presence, right down to his hair and personality.

You can find all my books on my website, and be sure to subscribe to my newsletter and follow me on your favorite social media sites!
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Wishing all of you a safe lockdown season! Happy Reading!

Mellanie Szereto