Archive for 'Guest Blogger'
Friday, May 17th, 2019
Life is what happens while you’re busy making plans. That’s the way it is in both life and writing. I have several publishers and occasional participate in Indie projects, so I have no control over when my books are released. Sometimes I may go several months without a new release. Then there are times like this when I had two books releasing less than two weeks apart.
Even nicer? They’re totally different kinds of projects. One is a contemporary romantic suspense story for an anthology. The other is a smoking hot science fiction romance.
The first book released was STRANDED: A BOYS BEHAVING BADLY ANTHOLOGY. This is actually the second A BOYS BEHAVING BADLY ANTHOLOGY that I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of. It’s fun to write a short story. There’s not a lot of time to tell the story so everything has to be tight, which means lots of tension and action between the main characters.
My story is “Undercover Lover“—Undercover as a waitress in a biker bar, DEA agent Sherry Norman is alone, stranded without backup until Ellis Smith, a man from her past, walks into the bar and back into her life.
Mind racing to try to figure a way out, she glanced toward the door when it opened. Her heart stopped. The entire bar dropped away. She no longer felt Deke’s hands on her. All she could see was the man who’d just walked in.
He stood about six-eight, his shoulders nearly as wide as the doorway. He was all muscle, which was on display as he wore nothing more than an open leather vest, a pair of faded jeans, and leather biker boots.
“Ellis,” she whispered.
“What was that?” Deke demanded, giving her a shake.
That drew the attention of the man. He looked their way and his gaze narrowed. “That’s my old man,” she told him. Deke was so surprised, he released her.
Praying she wasn’t making a mistake that might cost her dearly, she hurried over to the man she hadn’t laid eyes on in ten years. He watched her, his eyes still as blue as a lake in summer. His shaggy blond hair fell to his shoulders.
She put her hands on his shoulders and went up on her toes. “Kiss me,” she whispered. Not giving him time to object, she laid her lips against his.
Only days after the anthology came out, RESCUING RORY was released. This hot science fiction romance was actually published before for a very short period of time some years ago. It was the last book that a former publisher released before they closed their doors. I’d always planned for the Marks Mercenaries series to be a five book series, so I’m thrilled that it’s finally happening. The other four books in the series have been written and contracted and should be out very soon.
Being a writer is never boring.
Marks Mercenaries, Book 1
Betrayed and sold into slavery after her father’s death, Rory Banks finds herself dancing on the Exos, a deep-space pleasure ship. So when a stranger breaks open her cage and offers her a way out, she grabs it and runs.
Kal Marks and his brothers are space mercenaries and traders who have spent the past ten years searching for their younger sister. Their hunt has led them to the Exos and to Rory, who they hope will have information. But Kal never counted on wanting Rory or on the sexual tension and scorching heat that blazes between them. This mission just got a lot more complicated.
What did Rory think she was doing? And why the hell did she want to bunk somewhere else?
Well, he wasn’t having it. She belonged here with him.
He didn’t question the craziness of that last thought. He was long past rational reasoning when it came to the woman perched on his lap. Just the thought of her leaving him left his guts in a knot. It was like getting a fist to his heart when she’d casually mentioned Albion 5, but nothing like the boot to the balls he’d received when she’d said she wanted to move out of his quarters.
None of it made sense. Why should he care that she didn’t want to stay with him? He’d just met her, barely knew her, but that didn’t matter one little bit. They’d been through more in that short time than many people had in a lifetime together. He’d protected her. Saved her life. And she’d given him her trust.
The muscle beneath his eye continued to flutter. He forced himself to stop grinding his back teeth together for fear of damaging them. Rory felt right in his arms. He hadn’t realized how empty his arms or his life had been until he’d filled them with her.
Evernight Publishing: https://www.evernightpublishing.com/rescuing-rory-by-n-j-walters/
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/rescuing-rory-nj-walters/1119955681
About the Author
N.J. Walters is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has always been a voracious reader, and now she spends her days writing novels of her own. Vampires, werewolves, dragons, time-travelers, seductive handymen, and next-door neighbors with smoldering good looks—all vie for her attention. It’s a tough life, but someone’s got to live it.
Visit me at:
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/N.J.WaltersAuthor
Wednesday, May 15th, 2019
As creative types, we’re all familiar with writer’s block—when we open our notebooks or documents and stare at a blank page because the words won’t come to us. Sometimes we do find ourselves procrastinating writing: we tackle the backlog of laundry, mow the lawn, re-grout the shower—anything to avoid looking at that blinking cursor. Or we’ll binge-watch TV shows, take up yoga, commit to a new diet, all in the name of doing Something Else.
It’s incredibly frustrating. We chisel words out of stone, chipping away at the block in the hopes it will go away. Or sometimes we simply refuse to look at the current project. We might even start a new project. We want to create. We hate being idle. We want the block to go away.
The advice out there to deal with writer’s block is legion. Work through it. Take a break. Take a break but not too long a break. Write every day no matter what. The problem is knowing the right way to proceed.
In order to do that, we have to understand why we’re blocked.
As I see it, there are three basic forms of blockage. The first comes after you’ve finished a major project. You’re riding a high from successfully completing a draft, or turning in revisions. A day or two goes by but you can’t seem to settle to starting a new project or picking up on an old one you’ve set aside.
Give it some time. Farmers know they can’t keep planting the same fields over and over without allowing the soil to rest and replenish its nutrients. I know in today’s publishing environment, we’re supposed to be producing a story a month—heck, we’re supposed to be writing in our sleep—but creativity needs a chance to rest and replenish, too. Honor that. Read some books. Watch television. Take the dog for long rambles in the woods. When you’re ready, the next project will speak to you.
A subset of this type of blockage is when you’ve submitted something to a publisher and are waiting for the acceptance or rejection letter. While you should rest your mind for a bit because of the successful completion of a project, putting everything on hold for weeks or months while you wait and see if your book is contracted is a huge waste of time. Give yourself a week to recharge and then put the submitted story out of mind. Get the next one in the queue.
The second kind of blockage comes when your well of creativity is dry. This is NOT the kind of writer’s block you just plow through. You can’t pump water out of an empty well. Take a hard look at why your creativity has dried up on you. Are you burned out? Is your day job or personal life taking its toll on you? It’s hard to write a love story if your own love life is on the rocks. It’s hard to be creative when the world is falling apart around you or you’re working twelve hours a day. The words you drag out of an empty well will be just as dry and lifeless as the source. Author Louis L’Amour once advised, “Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”
To a certain point, he is right. I’ve been telling myself something similar for years without knowing the origin of the original quotation until recently. But there are times when that well is dry. You have to either wait for the water table to rise or drill a new well. You have to figure out how to solve the root problem. Sometimes there’s no easy fix. In which case, see if there is something you’re going through that can be incorporated into a story someday when there is more distance between you and the problem. This is also a great time to explore other areas of creativity. Write some no-pressure fanfic. Recount memories from your childhood. Keep a journal. Paint. Learn a new craft. Take photographs. Remember what it is like to play, to have fun. One time I created storyboards for action figures and photographed them in a series of scenes to tell the story I wanted to tell. Creativity begets creativity. It all counts in the end.
I think the third type of blockage is the kind most of us think of when we picture writer’s block. There’s an old Joe Flanigan movie called Farewell to Harry in which Flanigan has decided to ‘become a writer’ and travels to a small town looking for a story. He goes through all the classic moves of the blocked author: he sits in front of a typewriter staring at the blank page. He ripped the paper out of the machine, balls it up and throws it away. He drinks too much. He smashes a glass against a wall. His frustration is there for us to see.
But the real problem is he doesn’t know what story he wants to tell. He’s unable to write because he doesn’t know what he wants to write. It isn’t until he becomes involved with the titular character that he finds the story he wants to tell.
To be honest, that’s a very romanticized version of writer’s block. Most of us know the story we want to tell. We just can’t find the words to do so. If you can’t move forward on a story and you feel blocked, it’s a sign something doesn’t feel right to you as an author. You’ve gotten something wrong. There’s either a plot problem or you’re asking your heroes to do something out of character for them. Many times you can’t become unstuck until you figure out what that is.
Sometimes the answer is to write a different scene, the one you see clearest in your mind, and worry about how you bridge the two later. Sometimes the answer is to slog through it, tweaking and revising the scene until it falls into place. Sometimes you need to set the thing aside and do something mindless and physical to allow your brain to work through the problem without the blank page teasing you.
The hard part is knowing which to do when. But eventually, the writer in you will break through and the solution will be clear.
There’s no better feeling in the world than when that happens.
About McKenna Dean
McKenna Dean has been an actress, a vet tech, a singer, a teacher, a biologist, and a dog trainer. She’s worked in a genetics lab, at the stockyard, behind the scenes as a props manager, and at a pizza parlor slinging dough. Finally she realized all these jobs were just a preparation for what she really wanted to be: a writer.
She lives on a small farm in North Carolina with her family, as well as the assorted dogs, cats, and various livestock. She likes putting her characters in hot water to see how strong they are. Like tea bags, only sexier.
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/McKenna-Dean-Author-262328784224302/
Wednesday, May 8th, 2019
One thing I love to do to relax is sneak away to a candlelit bubble bath with a good book. I adore soaking in all those glorious scented bubbles while indulging myself in a sexy romance or high-spirited romcom. I even enjoy action/adventure. And if I can’t have a bath, I enjoy curling onto a cushy sofa with a thick throw and warm cup of hot chocolate—unless, of course, it’s summer in which the throw must be ditched and the hot chocolate replaced with a cool Mimosa. Or if I’m feeling exceptionally frisky, I may substitute the mimosa for a cosmopolitan or a good ol’ Southern Hurricane. However, a winddown I recently rediscovered is makeup. Yep, cosmetics. To explain this, I have to recap briefly my high school days.
Like many little girls, I dabbled with glitter makeup and my mother’s lipstick when I was in grammar school. I didn’t try to apply it in any meaningful way until junior high—which actually was the beginning of high school. See, the school I attended consisted of an elementary school from kindergarten to sixth grade and high school from seventh grade to twelfth grade. No distinctions were made for middle school or junior high school. Although to an untrained visitor, the elementary school may have appeared as five buildings, it was actually one structure that expanded one city block and connected in a series of internal and external stairways and underground passages. That may sound bizarre or like an uncanny version of Hogwarts School of Magic, but the explanation is actually unremarkable. The school was built in the 1800s and run by an order of nuns. A section of the school (the convent) housed the nuns. To move around in inclement weather, the nuns used the tunnels to travel from the convent to the main areas of the school. Since the nuns spent much time in meditation and prayer, the tunnels, as well as the inner stairs, allowed for privacy from the public. More importantly, at its inception, the elementary school wasn’t “elementary”. It was an all-girls school for students in kindergarten to twelfth grade.
As you’ve probably guessed, this meant that the high school was the original all-boys school. It was several miles away and not as large, as it did not have a monastery. It was run by priests. When the schools were made coed, they were split into what is now designated the elementary and high schools—well, sort of. The original high school burned and was rebuilt on a different parcel of land, and the original elementary school was sold to the city as a cultural art building when the order nuns moved from the convent. Instead of being a three-story half-block, the new high school was one-story and a quarter of the size of the original. But I digress. (You know how us southerners are.)
My point is, as a tweenie, I was exposed to and traveled in a circle with the high schoolers. We shared the same hallways, bathrooms, classrooms, locker rooms, and teachers. Naturally, I wanted to emulate some of the more popular upperclassmen, who in my preteen mind were gorgeous. I remember when the homecoming queen, who lived up the street from me, visited a neighborhood playground. She never did this, and I don’t know why she did that day. It was a usual humid southern day, and I was seated on the merry-go-round and covered in dust. (Actually, I think the technical term for the equipment was roundabout, but we called it a merry-go-round.) There was a “baseball” game happening at the time. (They called it baseball but they were using both metal and wooden bats with a softball but pitching it like a baseball—playground shenanigans and kids who didn’t know any better.) I was too little (and lousy) to play, and the other kids shooed me away from the game. Honestly, I didn’t blame them, and my feelings weren’t hurt. I’d rather swing or teeter on a todder than embarrass myself striking out or being belittled for not being able to field a ground ball. I’d never had anyone to teach me to play, let alone play using their janky rules. In any case, I was covered in dirt and dust because it had not rained in weeks, and all the grass around the merry-go-round was worn from foot traffic. Anytime I stopped or started the merry-go-round bolls of dust would formulate and engulf me like a sandstorm. I will never forget that on that day I was wearing white sneakers, white shorts, and a white T-shirt (like an idiot). My nails were ragged and my pigtails windblown out of their scrunchies. Then here comes this goddess in a yellow sundress, French manicured nails, Egyptian lace-up sandals, flawless skin with even more flawless makeup, and perfectly sculpted hair. If there ever was a moment that cussing was appropriate, that was it. Read the rest of this entry »
Friday, May 3rd, 2019
UPDATE: The winner is…Debra!
Note from DD: My scheduled guest was a no-show today, so I’m recycling a post from the Collections website that appeared there yesterday. I’m sharing excerpts from all the stories in Stranded to help you make the choice to purchase a copy of your own! There’s an amazing variety of themes, genres, settings, but all are very, very sexy. Enjoy the excerpt, enter the contest, then head on over to the Collections site to read more about this anthology and meet the authors! ~DD
My writing journey resembles a spiral that took me from writing for newspapers through seminary and ministry to writing romance in retirement. I have a journalism background and worked as a stringer for awhile. Writing fiction during that time had always been a way to make the world come round right after a day of covering stories when everything in the world was all wrong. When I became involved in the church, writing remained a hobby, but I did it less and less.
Then I became an X-Files fan, and I entered the heady fun-filled world of fan fiction under the name Rev. Anna. I really enjoyed myself making up stories again. A challenge from my mother-in-law to put my energy into writing my own characters came at the same time the radio program “This American Life” did a segment on Romance Writers of America national meeting in NYC. Jeanette’s challenge and that segment lit a “Why not?” fire in my writing soul. I joined RWA in 2003, joined chapters, entered contests, won a few, and finally got published in 2008. By then, I’d attended a retirement seminar that encouraged us to start thinking now about what we wanted to do in retirement. Another “Why not?” flame ignited, and now here I am an erotic romance writing retired minister.
Excerpt from “Put It in a Book”
Trapped in a book by a sorcerer for rejecting his sexual advances,
an ex-slave’s daughter discovers one hope of rescue – a nosy thief
Aziza, if you want to hide something from Black folk, put it in a book.
If her father had said this once, he’d said it a hundred times. As the daughter of a freed slave, Aziza Williams had resolved with every book she’d read, with every bit of content she’d memorized, no one would hide anything in a book from her.
How ironic the adage was being used against her now that she lived in the Free and Independent Republic of Liberia. Only someone as evil as Dulee Morlu could leave her stranded in a book.
Each time he removed The Story of Aziza from its shelf in his library, he’d badger, cajole, even plead with anyone present to read it.
“This book will change your life,” he’d say in a tone, always enticing, sometimes seductive, but never serious enough for anyone to take him up on the offer.
When they’d gone, he’d pressed his mouth to her image on the flyleaf. “No one will ever read your story,” he whispered with snake-like malice. His laugh bruised her heart each time he congratulated himself on his ingenuity. “You will remain hidden in these pages until you give yourself to me.”
Never had been her answer when he’d propositioned her a week after she’d arrived in Liberia. Never was her answer when he’d caught her pleasuring herself by the river’s edge after her morning swim. Never remained her answer from the day she’d awakened entombed within the pages of her own story to this.
How often had hope flared at the possibility of someone opening these pages and setting her free?
How many times had Morlu’s possessive grip caressed her prison’s spine, his wet thumb sliding down the edges of its pages?
“Everyone I’ve imprisoned yielded within a day. You’ve resisted for thirty,” he exclaimed. “I must dedicate a chapter to your resilience.”
He splayed his fingers across her prison’s pages, too accurately mimicking the spreading of her thighs. Her captive limbs shuddered. His calloused finger slid along the book’s gutter. Her inert hands tensed, unable to shield herself from the erotic—albeit vicarious—chafing his touch provoked.
“Your opposition makes your eventual capitulation that much sweeter.” He slid his finger faster, deeper between the pages. “And make no mistake…you will surrender.”
Each time he placed her back on the shelf, he planted a cold kiss on the book’s spine. Aziza quivered against the chill, unable to staunch the revulsion roiling in her throat—or at least, where she imagined her throat might still be.
“Until then,” he whispered.
Her spirit cringed at those words. She’d escaped from plantation owners eager to punish her for secretly teaching slaves to read. Her spirit had remained unbowed after fourteen harrowing weeks crossing the Atlantic. Even the hardships that had killed more than three-quarters of all who had emigrated to Liberia hadn’t vanquished her. If neither threats to her life nor dangers at sea nor the high mortality rate could defeat her, she’d be damned if this self-serving sorcerer would.
Her imprisonment seemed an unending stream of consciousness, punctuated only by Morlu’s uninvited intrusions. Thirty days. This sudden awareness of time weighed on her spirit and threatened to undo her.
How much longer could she hold out?
Get your copy of Stranded: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology here!
Comment for a chance to win a copy of Michal Scott’s eBook,
Better to Marry Than to Burn.
Thursday, May 2nd, 2019
I’ve always heard “there’s a time and place for everything.” Well, in romance… every time and every place is how it can work… but it’s not always easy to make it happen. Bedrooms… Well, they have beds. Houses, lots of flat surfaces.
But what happens when the right moment put you in a place that isn’t so easy to make it work. (Felt like I channeled Tim Gunn for a minute).
When I was writing Playing With Fire, I had a lot of fun, but part of the fun was finding my characters in a rather unconventional locale—the heroine’s old model VW Rabbit.
Now, I will admit to a certain affinity for this diminutive car. My first vehicle was a 1981 VW Rabbit (I bought it in 1991), and the poor dear wasn’t in the best shape, but it got me all over California during my last three years in college. And while Jefferson Automobile and I had a good time together, I thought it might be a challenge for my hero (six-feet-plus) to attempt a little sexy time in such a petite auto.
So what does any author do when confronted with a question?
That’s right… LOOK IT UP!
Sooo many articles online… Even one that gave suggestions for positions based on Auto Model that included SOUNDTRACK suggestions… *wink* So when you’re planning the “spur of the moment” sexy times…be prepared…
Playing With Fire
St. Raphael, CA Book 2
When Finley tells him that she’s given up on love and done with men in general, Jackson sets out to prove that he’s not only the man she was meant to be with, he’s a firefighter who knows how to heal her heart and soul. Is he Playing With Fire?
Get your copy here!
Finley slipped her hand between them, and curled her fingers into her pocket, withdrawing a small foil packet held loosely between her fingers. “We don’t want to waste this, do we?”
She felt him stiffen against her, and it wasn’t just the hard ridge in his jeans; it was every single inch of him and she smiled. She’d turned the tables on him, taken his impromptu admission to heart.
“Finley, this isn’t the place-”
“It’s the perfect place,” she argued back, taking a quick look around, “there’s no one out here, and even if they were, the trees are so overgrown no one could possibly see us.”
She worked her hand over his length. His open-mouthed groan muffled her soft satisfied laugh.
“You can’t do this to me, Fin.”
“To you? I’m hoping to do it ‘with’ you.” Her next pass along his length brought his zipper down with it, and he leaned into her touch.
It was addicting, she decided, having this power over a man as strong as Jackson. And as she released the button on the waistband of his jeans she heard him swear under his breath.
“I’m sorry,” she asked him in a sweet and playful tone, “I didn’t hear that. What did you say?”
“Dammit, Finley,” his voice ground out between his teeth as he drew in one breath after another, “don’t tease me. There’s no way we’re going to fit in your car.”
“Well,” she flattened her palm over his stomach and slid it down under the waistband of his briefs, “you fit on the drive up here.”
He turned them, bracing his hands on the top of her car on either side of her body. The shift in their positions added enough friction to make him hiss. “That stick shift is going to make one of us very uncomfortable.”
“You have to think creatively.” She leaned closer, pressing her lips against his chest, and wondered if that was really the speed of his heart or her own. “Or you could put yourself in my hands.”
She felt him swell against her palm and licked her lips. “Then again, looks like you already have.”
Reaching out with her free hand she tugged open the passenger door. A moment later she was busy fiddling with the seat. Behind her, Jackson leaned heavily against the car his jaw tightly clenched.
She heard the impatient edge in his voice and couldn’t help but smile hoping he couldn’t see. “Just a minute.”
The snap in his tone made her laugh outright. “If you want to hurry so much, you could get rid of those jeans.” She heard the rustle of fabric and turned a moment later to find Jackson gloriously naked in the moonlight. She pulled her lower lip into her mouth, enjoying the sharp brush of her teeth against the soft flesh. “Wow.”
His shoulders rose and fell as she looked at him, from head to toe and back again, with a long curious pause in the middle.
“Why did you take off the shirt?” Mentally she kicked herself. One didn’t question a panty-melting man about why he took his clothes off. One just enjoyed the view and said, “Thank you.”
Oh my god. “Did I really say that out loud?”
His broad grin was answer enough. But then he opened his mouth and made her go weak in the knees. “It’s going to get hot in your car, Finley.” He gestured at her with a gleam in his eyes. “I think you might want to get rid of all of that.”
She reached for her waistband and pulled it down over her hips, her panties caught up in the motion ended up tangled at her feet. The long hip-length tunic she wore kept her covered in shadow.
“That’s not fair,” he growled the words and moved closer, his hands reaching for the hem. “I think it’s only fair that I get to see all of you too.”
She wanted to cross her arms over her chest and back away, but that would be silly given the number of times they’d been together over the last few weeks.
Once you’ve had a man naked in your kitchen, your legs wrapped around his waist as you tumble half the spice rack into your sink, it’s silly to hide yourself from him when you’re alone and in the dark.
Jackson reached over and slid his fingers under the hem, brushing the back of his hand against her stomach. “Need some help?”
She shook her head. “Get in the backseat and I’ll take it off.”
It took only a second or two for him to climb into the backseat of her car, tucked into the corner with one leg bent and the other leg stretched out the door.
Against the aged upholstery, Jackson sprawled like a mythological god. And when he held out a hand, crooking his finger to draw her closer, she grabbed the hem of her azure tunic and pulled it off, the beaded neckline brushing over her face, another layer of sensation prickling along her skin.
Ducking into the car, she ended up straddling his leg. The heat of his thigh between hers set her skin aflame.
About Reina Torres
Who would have thought that I’d start off as a painfully shy child writing stories and end up as a painfully shy adult writing books and publishing them for others to read? Crazy? That’s me!!
When I was a little girl, I read every book I could get my hands on and if I didn’t have one available to read, I’d get out my pencils and paper and write down stories and scenes. Waiting for my mom to finish working, I’d duck into the ladies’ breakroom and use the typewriter. I’d feel like Jessica Fletcher, happily tap, tap, tapping away until I got to ‘The End.” Couldn’t quite get the flourish after that and end up tearing the paper, but it was cool and scary to sit down and read the book or give it to my friends to read.
Now, my ‘typewriter’ doesn’t clack the same way and the I don’t even have paper to pull out of it with a nod of satisfaction, but I have the joy and excitement of sharing my characters and books with people all around the world!
I hope you’ll enjoy reading my books, because I’m going to keep writing as long as the characters are feeling chatty!
Amazon Page http://www.amazon.com/author/reinatorresromance
Reina Torres Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/ReinaTorresRomance/
Reina’s Readers https://www.facebook.com/groups/ReinaTorresReaders/
Tell me your favorite car/vehicle. Either one you’ve owned or want to own… and what was its name?/would be its name?
Prize—Two winners, for an ebook of Playing With Fire or any other of my St. Raphael, CA books
Wednesday, May 1st, 2019
UPDATE: The winner is…Debra Guyette!
©Diana Cosby 2019
Spring is here! Yes, I love the longer hours of daylight, how with each day it’s growing warmer, but most, I love the gorgeous flowers blooming.
When I take a break from writing, it’s amazing to step outside and see the wash of colorful flowers; pinks, purple, red, and so many more.
Then there’s the wonderful fragrance of flowers that fills the air. At times you only catch a hint of their scent on breeze, but if you stop, smell a bloom, you enjoy the full impact of their fragrance.
I love how flowers are not only in plain sight, but half-hidden between blades of grass, sprinkled within the hedges, and woven within the vines.
Although it’s sad when spring flower’s pass, with the approach of summer, a riot of new, gorgeous blooms will appear.
What is your favorite flower?
About Diana Cosby
A retired Navy Chief, Diana Cosby is an international bestselling author of Scottish medieval romantic suspense. Books in her award-winning MacGruder Brothers series have been translated in five languages. Diana has spoken at the Library of Congress, Lady Jane’s Salon in NYC, and appeared in Woman’s Day, on USA Today’s romance blog, “Happy Ever After,” MSN.com, Atlantic County Women Magazine, and Texoma Living Magazine.
After her career in the Navy, Diana dove into her passion – writing romance novels. With 34 moves behind her, she was anxious to create characters who reflected the amazing cultures and people she’s met throughout the world. After the release of the bestselling MacGruder Brothers series, The Oath Trilogy, and the first three books of The Forbidden Series, she’s now working on book #4, Forbidden Realm, of the five-book series, which will be released August, 6th, 2019.
Diana looks forward to the years of writing ahead and meeting the amazing people who will share this journey.
***ONE winner will be drawn from everyone who posts on my guest blog post about, ‘The Beauty of Spring,” on Delilah’s blog between 27 April 2019 – 4th May 2019. The winner will receive one of Diana’s mugs and a tote.
Diana Cosby, International Best-Selling Author
The Oath Trilogy
MacGruder Brother Series
Forbidden Series: Forbidden Legacy/Forbidden Knight/Forbidden Vow/Forbidden Alliance‒Aug. 6th 2019/Forbidden Realm TBA
Monday, April 29th, 2019
Just after I moved to the area where I now live (New South Wales, Australia), I checked out possibilities for classes as I’m always interested in learning new things. Finding a six-week evening course on making silver jewelry, I asked if it would be suitable for a complete beginner; assured that it was, I signed up. Well, it wasn’t. The tutor preferred to work with the seven others all of whom who had done a course with her previously. She started me off cutting silver, and only later did I realize she hadn’t given any occupational health and safety information surely essential in a studio with sharp tools, soldering and electrical equipment, and a gas-heated dish. I pestered her with “Is this OK?” and “What do I do next?”, and filled a notebook with instructions. After the six weeks, I ended up with a ring, two pairs of earrings and an unfinished pendant. The ring was too small, one pair of earrings too heavy while the other, on which I etched a simple design, was definitely wearable.
But I did come away from this unsatisfactory experience with something worthwhile: an idea for crafting a story involving a silver jewelry designer. My contemporary romantic comedy, Silver Linings, was hatched. I’d recently completed Hot Ticket, which is located in tropical Darwin, and I wanted to set this new romance at the other end of Australia, in an isolated area with harsh winter weather. I love researching, and if it involves travel, so much the better! So I explored southern Tasmania, conceiving a wild island on the edge of the Southern Ocean. I also spent time in Hobart and nearby areas visiting galleries similar to where my characters could sell their creations, and inventing a funky bar where Alistair takes Cassandra after he almost runs her over. No one almost ran me over but I did get to a funky bar…
He almost runs her over, she breaks a shoe in a drain…what can he do but play Prince Charming? This near accident caused by Alistair is Cassandra’s introduction to life in the fun lane. Both fresh out of inappropriate relationships and jobs, each is novelty value for the other. But their exes are pulling tricks to be reinstated, offering lifestyles where income is guaranteed. So can Cassie’s passion for fashioning silver jewellery and Al’s for re-purposing driftwood timber keep them fed?
Friday, bloody Friday. Why did it always rain on Fridays?
Waiting at a red light, Alistair drummed his fingers on the steering wheel. Might as well rain forever. No job, retrenched this sodden morning after four years, downsizing they called it. No girlfriend, ditched last soaking Friday after two years, upsizing Toni called it.
By the time the light condescended to turn green, he could have become fluent in Urdu. He flicked the wipers to fast, the heater to high, and the headlights on as he joined the five p.m. traffic crawling towards Hobart’s Tasman Bridge. July in southern Tasmania made a man hallucinate about a tropical Queensland beach—and yet he loved the island. Which was why he’d fallen onto the singles trash heap. And why he’d probably be jobless until the South Pole’s icecap melted and drowned them all. He didn’t need to open the window to feel the chilly winds of a miserable future.
Jeez! He stamped on the brake. Why the hell didn’t the damn fool woman look? Glancing in the rear view mirror, he sucked in his breath. She was standing in the roadway. Thank God he hadn’t hit her. A bus behind him honked as he skidded to a halt. Just his luck, he’d pulled up at a stop. He inched forward, pushed into park, toggled the engine off and rummaged for his umbrella. He should clean up this post-Toni mess of newspapers, chocolate wrappers, apple cores, and—hey, was this lottery ticket as winner? Nah, nothing in his life was a winner. His fingers located the recalcitrant umbrella. He swung out of the car in time to see the bus driver make a rude sign at him. He returned it and was rewarded with a shower of slimy spray as the bus pulled out.
Cassandra had no desire to do a Cinderella and leave her shoe in the gutter, so she stumbled onto the kerb on one and a half heels. She glared in the direction of a silver bullet of a car. Not satisfied with half-drowning her, that maniac had ruined her shoes. She hobbled to a streetlight to lean against it, took off her left shoe and examined it. She’d felt it catch in a drain as she struggled to save herself from annihilation. Tatters of leather were all that connected the last two inches of heel to the first four.
The sight of her poor battered shoe crushed the last straw holding up her life. Straws had been crumpling for months, and after today’s incendiary stuff in her office, and terminal exasperation with her serial date-cancelling fiancé, she might a well drop out of civilisation. Ex-office, since she’d left her boss in no doubt that she would ever go back. And fiancé? Ex too? Her engagement ring, tossed among the clutter at the bottom of her bag two hours ago when Jeremy had cancelled tonight, was emitting persuasive return-to-sender signals. Then he’d couriered the theatre tickets for this evening, suggesting she took her brother. Getting run over was almost a preferred option to going anywhere with Gordon.
She sighed, regarded her shoe with displeasure, and pushed her foot into it. It would have to get her home, if she could ever manage to cross the road to her bus stop.