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Cara/September North: What do The Drummonds and Arts & Crafts have to do with each other?
Thursday, May 6th, 2021

Hello everyone and thank you for having me as a guest on this blog. I enjoy arts and crafts. Pinterest is one of those social media sites that I thoroughly enjoy because it not only lets me save tons of pics of my muse, Jake Gyllenhaal, it also allows me to find new arts and crafts type projects I can work on. Are you crafty? In my YA for Mature Readers, The Drummond’s Series (14 Books!), I think at least one person is artistically inclined. The Drummonds are musicians, but not everyone is awesome at it, and several of their mates have other skills such as spray painting, pottery, making awesome “I’m With the Band” T-shirts.

What are some of your favorite arts and crafts? Are they holiday-themed?

As an author, I got a batch of my books with the pages stuck together. They sent me a fresh batch, but I am trying to figure out what all I can make with the randomly glued books I have. I don’t want to throw them away. So far, I have origami cranes and I mod-podged some pencils. Any other suggestions?

If you are into YA, please check out my Drummonds. They are available where e-books are sold.

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Cynthia Sax: Under Strain And Dinosaur Planets
Wednesday, May 5th, 2021

Under Strain, the second standalone romance in my Rebel Cyborgs series, is set on Rohini 9, a dinosaur planet. The main predators on Rohini 9 are theropods, velociraptor-like dinosaurs. They’re intelligent, deadly hunters, and the arriving cyborg warriors have fun dealing with them.

I LOVE dinosaurs. As a kid, I had dinosaur toys and I read every book I could find on them. I’ve been on touristy dinosaur digs. I am glued to the TV whenever any of the Jurassic Park/World movies are shown. Once there’s a dinosaur featured, I’m captured.

My favorite dinosaur, when I was young, was the Brontosaurus. I was fascinated by their size and I always viewed them, even before watching Jurassic Park, as gentle giants. Riding a Brontosaurus was a childhood goal.

If that goal is ever achieved, something has gone terribly wrong in the space-time continuum. And there are no Brontosauruses mentioned in Under Strain but there ARE some awesome dinosaur riding scenes.

The velociraptors in the Jurassic Park world, however, excited me. They are intelligent and they communicate with each other, as many pack predators do. They are also slender enough to navigate between trees. Their prey couldn’t easily escape them.

I knew it was merely a matter of time until I found the perfect story in which to feature them. And I suspected that story would be a SciFi Romance.

It is plausible to me that somewhere in our vast universe, there’s a world inhabited by dinosaurs. They existed here on Earth. They could exist elsewhere.

Under Strain is my set-on-a-dinosaur-planet story.

Kamyelle, the heroine, has been the sole human on her planet for many solar cycles (years).  The theropods view her kind as nice, light snacks. She has skillfully avoided being eaten by living in the trees.

Strain, the cyborg hero, and his brethren have a very different approach to dealing with the theropods. They plan to have some fun with the predators.

What is your favorite dinosaur? Would you like to live on a dinosaur planet?

Under Strain

A damaged cyborg warrior is hunted by a peace-loving human female.

Strain is severely malfunctioning. The D Model cyborg was the sole survivor after a horrific decision was made by his cruel manufacturers. He hates all humans, and when he attacks one who is under his cyborg leader’s protection, he is reprimanded, stripped of his weapons, and told to watch and not actively participate in the next mission.

That mission takes place on a small remote planet. Its lush terrain should only be inhabited by the cyborgs they were sent to rescue, but Strain senses another presence on the surface. She is watching him, tracking him, hunting him.

A fully operational cyborg would end her lifespan.

Strain wants to claim her. Forever.

Kamyelle is the only one left of her kind. Warriors have killed the other nonviolent human inhabitants of her planet. She survived…barely…by hiding in the trees, observing her enemies, and covering herself with lifeform scan-concealing mud.

When a handsome, gray-skinned, brilliant-blue-eyed male arrives, surrounded by weapon-carrying warriors, she has to save him. Warriors harm and they kill. That is what they do.

She won’t allow them to hurt Strain.

Under Strain is a STANDALONE Cyborg SciFi Romance set in a dark, gritty, sometimes-violent universe.

It features a broken warrior, a human female who thinks he’s perfect, and velociraptor-like dinosaurs who view them both as light, tasty snacks.

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About Cynthia Sax

USA Today bestselling author Cynthia Sax writes steamy Cyborg, Alien and Contemporary Romances. Her stories have been featured on TV, in Star Magazine, and numerous top ten lists.

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Twitter:  @CynthiaSax

N.J. Walters: Spring Cleaning and Renewal
Friday, April 30th, 2021

Now that the days are warmer it’s time to throw open the windows and let in the fresh air. Each new season offers a chance to renew ourselves and our homes, to take stock of what’s working and what needs to change.

For most of us, spring means spring cleaning—airing out our homes, washing down walls, hunting down dust bunnies, and giving everything a scrub to freshen it up. It’s also an opportunity to go through what we have stored in our closets and dresser drawers.

I don’t know about you, but the only clothing I bought last year was socks. I mean, I wasn’t going anywhere, so I didn’t see the point of new clothes. Some of what I’m wearing is getting a little ragged. I’m not a big clothes shopper. I tend to find something I like and buy it in multiple colors and call it a day. But it’s time to toss what’s faded and worn and make a list of what I need. I’m looking forward to it.

The same goes for the linen closet. My summer sheets, which only get used about three months of the year, must be about fifteen years old. (I spend my money on sets of heavier jersey sheets since they’re the ones I use most often.) The colors are faded and I fear they won’t last for many more washings without disintegrating. That’s something else to go on the list, along with new pillows. The ones I have are starting to get a little too flat for comfort.

Since I live in an apartment, there’s no garage to sift through, but I will be poking around the kitchen cupboards and closets to see what else can go. I’m a big believer in yard sales and donating what no longer suits me. It keeps things in circulation and out of the landfill. And it also makes room for the new.

Happy cleaning!

Salvation Pack

Have you discovered the Salvation Pack? If you love alpha wolves, you’ll love the Salvation Pack.

Wolf at the Door
Wolf in her Bed
Wolf on the Run
Wolf from the Past
Wolf on the Hunt
Wolf on a Mission
Wolf in his Heart
Wolf in her Soul
Wolf of her Own

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, assassins, 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.

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Andy Carley: Pure Magic (Contest + Excerpt)
Wednesday, April 28th, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Dana Zamora!

Spring has sprung—at least here in Northwest Georgia! The flowers are going crazy. There’s green as far as the eye can see, and of course, the yellow haze of pine pollen coats everything. We’re joyfully wheezing and sneezing our way through the days with runny eyes and runny noses as we embrace the wonder of spring.

Here on the farm, spring means BABIES! Our first calf dropped last night—a little late, but better late than never. We have four new chicks that will augment our four old ladies who supply us with eggs. Piglets should be coming in another few weeks. The energy of spring is like nothing else. It just lifts your soul when you walk among new life, full of possibility and hope.

I think creating a story is like that too. It starts as a baby idea, a kernel of thought. Then, it starts to grow, sometimes not even consciously, until it defines itself. Sometimes, it rises in my brain, fully formed with crystal clear images and parades around like a gaudy Vegas side-show until I give it my attention. Other times, it whispers and nags, slipping into my dreams as half-formed ghosts, only revealing itself clearly when I focus solely on it.

Then, the magic starts. Just like that buzzing lift of spring, the story takes root and blooms—and it’s the most amazing feeling in the world. It’s why I’m shamelessly addicted to writing! Like any infant, you don’t know what it will be when it grows up, but breathing life into a story is like experiencing spring over and over!

One of my book babies releases today! Thank you, Delilah, for letting me drop by and celebrate with you wonderful folks!

Pure Magic Contest

I’m offering a giveaway of an ebook copy of Pure Magic, a multi-author anthology that features my story—Hecate’s Hand-Me-Downs. To enter, leave a comment about your favorite part of spring! I’ll pick a winner on May 1st!

Hecate Rigby wants nothing to do with magic or being the witch she was raised to be. But, when Cate’s forced to return to Ravensdale after her Grandmother’s death, she soon finds out her Grandma led a double life—one that will change Cate’s life forever. The Hammer of the Gods is missing, and Cate was the last one to have it. Will she step up, embrace her powers and her heritage, and find the hammer before it falls into the wrong hands and plunges the world into war?

Grab your copy here:

Here’s an excerpt from Hecate’s Hand-Me-Downs:

Rook squawked and puffed his feathers up.

In a voice that shook the walls, he announced, “Behold, the God of the Forge.”

He flew down from his perch and landed in front of the door, bowing his head with one wing spread out to the side.

I spun around to see a man shuffle into the store and stop short of the mess. Despite his twisted legs, he towered over me and seemed to suck up all the available space. His t-shirt read ‘Save an Anvil, Bang a Blacksmith’ and stretched to its limits over his massive shoulders and muscular chest. I glanced down at his legs. His knees touched, and his pigeon toes canted in at an awkward angle.

The dichotomy of his top and bottom halves would have distracted me, but his bedroom brown eyes snagged my attention.

Goddess help me, but I’m a sucker for a brown-eyed boy.

The man wore his dark brown hair long and pulled it back in a simple ponytail gathered at the nape of his neck. His body screamed bad boy, but his eyes whispered tenderhearted dreamer.

Rook squawked and pecked my ankle. “Show some respect.”

“What?” I gave myself a little shake and put a smile on my face, reminding myself that it was bad manners to stare.

“Hello, Mistress Rigby.” He nodded at me as his gaze swept over the disarray in the shop, and his mouth turned down with a frown.

I drew a breath to launch into my ‘we’re closed’ speech, but he cut me off.

“I’ve come for the hammer. Bring it to me, please.”

The command in his voice was unmistakable, and my patience, brown eyes notwithstanding, found its end. I didn’t like his tone.

“The hammer isn’t here. A tall, beautiful, scary lady beat you to it.” I put my hands on my hips and mirrored his frown. “As you can see, we’ve had a bit of a…” I trailed off, not knowing what to say. Finally, I just said, “We’re not open.”

“Rowen Rigby, Sentinel and Guardian of the Crossroads, do not play games. I will have the Hammer of the Gods as I am its rightful owner.” The man seemed to get bigger, and his voice filled the shop.

Magic crackled in the air. Pieces of the puzzle clicked into place.

Rowen had not been remiss in my arcane education. I knew mythology as well as spell casting, herb lore, and healing magic. Though I hadn’t embraced the craft after leaving home as an adult, the lessons still lingered in my mind. The Hammer of the Gods, Rook’s announcement of the God of the Forge, and the man’s palpable power all came into focus. Impossible as it was, Hephaestus, Son of Hera, God of the Forge, and Olympian outsider, stood in my shop.


Stalk me (it’s not as kinky as it sounds!) for more giveaways, games, and fun:

Gabbi Grey: From Erotic to Sweet (Excerpt)
Friday, April 23rd, 2021

I’ve had incredible support from my publisher, The Wild Rose Press, to write gay romances.  Stories that have called to me.  Stories that I’ve wanted to tell.  Stories that have been important to me.  Interestingly, my first story was within the shared world of the Deerbourne Inn series.  The Inn is located in the fictional town of Willow Springs, Vermont.  By the time my book, My Past, Your Future was published, it fell in as book 18.  The town and its inhabitants were well-known and loved.  Mine was the first gay romance in the series, and I was lucky my diverse story found acceptance.

In that shared world, the character most intriguing to me was the desk clerk at the inn.  Jared appeared in the very first story and just about every subsequent one.  He is, after all, the character who greets all the wayward stragglers who turn up.  He’s seen many romances bloom and has cheerily watched from afar.  He’s gay, and I knew I wanted him to get his happy ending.

Now, pitching to a publisher using an existing character and giving him a happily ever after of his own can be tricky.  All the editors (and other writers) had their view of who he was.  I was proposing expanding him and, gasp, giving him a romantic arc.  I encountered some resistance because my other gay romances have involved pretty explicit sex scenes between two men.  Some editorial staff wondered if I could give Jared the ending he deserved.

Fortunately, my editor was on my side.  She helped me craft a synopsis that demonstrated a clear romantic arc culminating in a true happily ever after.  And I agreed to make this a sweet romance.  I haven’t written one of those in years, but I figured how hard could it be?  I’m a writer.  This is a character I love.  I have a strong hero for him to fall in love with.  Certainly, they can ride off in the sunset together.

I got to work.

And quickly discovered I rely a lot on anatomical descriptions of desire and plenty of expletives.

But I was determined to write the best damn book I could.

I asked writer friends for non-swear swear words.  I sought descriptions more emotionally driven and less about body parts.  In other words, I did what the publisher asked.  And something magical happened.  They liked it.  They really did.  They offered me a contract, and the book is now out in the world.  Another great thing happened – I rediscovered the joy of writing sweet.

My hope with this book is first and foremost to give readers a joyous experience.  I want them to be transported to the wonderful world of Willow Springs and to be immersed in Vermont in springtime.  I’m also hopeful romance readers who haven’t tried a gay romance before will give my book a chance.  There’s a huge subgenre out there with romances of every kind imaginable.  Why not start with something gentle, sweet, and full of love?  And before you think it’s all kittens and roses, both Jared and Xander have some deep emotional wounds they have to work through.  I’m not known for giving my characters a free ride.  And, okay, there might be one kitten.  And a dog.  But I don’t want to give too much away.

Thank you, Delilah, for letting me visit today and wax poetic about my little book.  I hope your readers check it out. 

If Only for Today Synopsis

He came looking for solitude. He might leave after finding love.

Jared Langford is a happy man. The desk clerk at the Deerbourne Inn knows everyone in his cozy town in Vermont. He is accepted and loved by the community, but he’s missing someone special in his life.

Devastating news has brought journalist Xander Fortier to Willow Springs for some much-needed rest. He’s photographed every major conflict in the world for the last ten years, but being stateside has forced him to reassess the solitary life he’s been living.

Something in Xander’s gruff demeanor calls to Jared’s caring nature. Soon the men are spending time together, but Jared’s kisses might not be enough to keep Xander from leaving. Can the men find a happily ever after if they only have today?

Excerpt from If Only for Today

“Kiss me.” This time the plea came from Jared.

Xander was happy to oblige. He hooked his fingers under Jared’s jaw and tugged him closer. Such smooth skin. He must’ve shaved before their date because no man went the entire day without a trace of hair. Angling his head, he lowered his lips and pressed them to Jared’s. So, so smooth.

He hadn’t spent a lot of time kissing. Was he was doing it right? Jared threw his arms around his neck and pulled them closer. The other man opened his mouth, demanding reciprocation. And, okay, this was…intimate.

As Xander swept his tongue into Jared’s mouth and their tongues parried, he closed the distance. Xander reacted to the deliciously close contact. What red-blooded man wouldn’t, when he held the perfect partner in his arms? Jared was everything he’d wanted but never allowed himself to dream he might have.

And that realization had him slowly backing away. He ended their intimate exchange and placed a soft kiss to Jared’s forehead.


Jared’s blue eyes were unfocused, and his lips were plump from their kisses. His cheeks were pink—either from arousal or whisker burn.

Unable to resist the urge, Xander pulled him into a tight embrace. “I really like you, but I need to let you go. I have to get back to my room.”

Jared’s body stiffened and when he pulled back, Xander released him. Reluctantly.

Pressing his fingers to his lips, Jared whispered. “It was just a kiss.”

A kiss that meant everything. Words better left unsaid.

“I’ll walk you home.” The least he could do.

Jared shook his head. “Not necessary. Willow Springs is a safe town, and I can manage on my own. I’m quite capable of taking care of myself. Thank you for the offer.” He pointed down the street. “Two blocks that way, and you’ll be back at the inn. Don’t forget you’ll need your key.” Without another word he pivoted and headed back in the direction from which they’d come.

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About the Author

Gabbi lives in beautiful British Columbia where her fur baby chin-poo keeps her safe from the nasty neighborhood squirrels. Working for the government by day, she spends her early mornings writing contemporary, gay, sweet, and dark erotic BDSM romances. While she firmly believes in happy endings, she also believes in making her characters suffer before finding their true love. She also writes m/f romances as Gabbi Black.

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Desiree Holt & Liz Crowe: Numbers Game (Contest & Excerpt)
Wednesday, April 21st, 2021

UPDATE: The winner is…Misty Dawn!

Numbers Game

That’s what it’s all about

Comment for a chance to win a $10 Amazon Gift Certificate

Football is a purely American sport that epitomizes all the values that we hold dear in our country: hard work, teamwork, toughness, victory, and glory.  Football is a fast-paced game of action that could change on any single play. The anticipation of a game-changing play always keeps fans on the edge of their seats, waiting for the moment to explode in jubilation.

Football is America’s game.

So take a sports reporter trying to rebuild her career, a college football coach trying to rebuild his own position in the sport while leading his alma mater back to the glory days, and two romance shy people wondering if they dare take a second chance on romance and what do you have?

Numbers Game!

Former NFL player and coach Duncan “Hatch” Hatcher fumbled his career and marriage. Now divorced and ready to tackle his future, he has an opportunity to redeem himself as coach of his college alma mater’s football team. But how can he can turn the team’s losing streak around and keep the secret of his downfall buried when the school agrees to a documentary that will allow a lovely journalist to dig her way into his past…and into his heart?

Olivia Grant’s ex-husband almost wrecked her journalism career while he definitely did a number on her self-esteem. The documentary on Duncan Hatcher is the perfect way to rebuild both. As a freshman in college, she’d had a crush on the senior football hero, but he hadn’t known she existed. She never expects the sparks that fly between them as they work on the project nor the struggles they must face if they both want to win.

Get it here!


A taste of Numbers Game…

Hatch winced at the memory of how goofy he must have sounded to the lovely woman he was going to be having a fair bit of contact with this season. Olivia Grant was, without a doubt, beautiful, not to mention sexy as hell. She was a natural reporter, putting him at ease, even in the face of his high-school-ish reaction to her at first. But dear Lord, the crap he’d said? That shit about her being “better than she thought” at the race? And “looking for a foot in the door”? He’d sounded about as slick as the grandpas he’d been named for.

He groaned and pressed his forehead to the leather blotter on his new desk. After his divorce, he’d made a point not to notice women, something that was a bit of a self-imposed penalty. But there was no not noticing Olivia. Her soft, dark blonde hair that kept dropping over one of her deep green eyes as she’d look down at her notes, then back up at him. That smile, and those full, barely lip-sticked lips. And there was no denying she had a body that would be hard to shake out of his brain. Scott had told him she used to play soccer here, a few years behind him as an undergrad. How he’d not known her… Granted, he hadn’t been a big partier then, kept mostly to himself and his close group of friends and, as always, focused on the game.

But damn. He’d missed out on something then, without a doubt. He felt his face flush red and his entire body begin to react in ways that didn’t really serve him well as a fully grown man, with plenty of experience under his belt, so to speak.

Thankfully, she’d left before he could embarrass himself anymore.

Home. Shower. Beer. Stare at a string of old movies on the giant television screen. Anything to get the lovely Olivia Grant and all her many attributes out of his head. She was, after all, the media. And everyone knew how he felt about the media.

It was get a grip time—on all parts of himself.

This was his chance at redemption. The opportunity was a godsend, considering the sorry state he’d left his life in on the west coast, and he didn’t intend to do anything to screw it up. He couldn’t afford to get distracted by a single thing. But how the hell was he going to do that when Olivia Grant might prove to be the biggest distraction of all?

Meet the Authors

USA Today best-selling and award-winning author Desiree Holt writes everything from romantic suspense and contemporary on a variety of heat levels up to erotic, a genre in which she is the oldest living author. She has been referred to by USA Today as the Nora Roberts of erotic romance, and is a winner of the EPIC E-Book Award, the Holt Medallion and a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice nominee. She has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning and in The Village Voice, The Daily Beast, USA Today, The (London) Daily Mail, The New Delhi Times and numerous other national and international publications.
Twitter @desireeholt
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Liz Crowe is a Kentucky native and graduate of the University of Louisville living in Central Illinois. She’s spent her time as a three-continent expat trailing spouse, mom of three, real estate agent, brewery owner and bar manager, and is currently a social media consultant and humane society development director, in addition to being an award-winning author. With stories set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch, inside fictional television stations and successful real estate offices, and even in exotic locales like Istanbul, Turkey, her books are compelling and told with a fresh voice. The Liz Crowe backlist has something for any reader seeking complex storylines with humor and complete casts of characters that will delight, at times frustrate, and always linger in the imagination long after the book is finished.

Genevive Chamblee: Rock Fiction–it’s more than what you think!
Monday, April 19th, 2021

Greetings all! When I brainstorm ideas for blog posts, the first question I always ask myself is what are readers interested in and what new something about those topics am I able to bring to the table. My default answer is always: books. But what specifically about books? Romance. Yes, but that’s still vague. So, then, I began to think about the different kinds of romances—historical, regency, erotic, romantic comedy, inspirational romance, speculative romance, romantic suspense, etc. I asked myself what I could comment on each of them that would be noteworthy.

My second act when deciding on a theme or issue is to scroll through my past posts to avoid duplication of topics, unless it is my specific intention to update an older post that has become obsolete. I always want to provide fresh and interesting content, and that can be made difficult when blogging weekly, especially when one has been doing it for years. I also want to ensure that I write accurate information. There’s nothing worse than reading an article that is jammed with misinformation, incomplete, or not well thought out.

This brings me to my third question. I must ask myself if there is another material available for me to write a post that will do the topic justice. Let me tell you, this topic came extremely close to failing to meet this criterion. I’ve had plenty of blog ideas that I’ve had to nix simply because I did not have enough supporting documentation. Search engines for this subject were not my friend, and part of that has to do with the name which I’ll briefly discuss later. I wasted hours reading through articles that didn’t help. (And as an aside, this is how writers and bloggers fall down that proverbial writing rabbit hole. They begin searching for one thing and end up looking at everything else that gets thrown in their path on their search. I don’t know how many times I catch myself asking, “What’s that?” Then, off I go to chase the white rabbit knowing good and doggone well what happened to Alice. Forget finding the queen. Off with my own head. One would think I would have learned by now. But anyway…

Today was no different than any other day for me deciding on a topic, except I found myself having a hard time focusing. Nothing was popping, and everything seemed a distraction. I finally decided to revert to my handy dandy massive pile of spirals that I have stacked in a box. This is where I take notes when working on novels or important takeaways from edits. Truthfully, there’s no telling what one will find in those things. But I digress. As I flipped through one of my writing notebooks, I noticed a question that I had scribbled in the margin and had long forgotten. But I do remember the conversations that followed. An idea began to formulate. Read the rest of this entry »