Jan 31, 2014

Ringing in the New Year with Vella Day!

I love to read, write, dream, and connect with people. A book with a happily ever after is a must, as is having characters I can relate to. My men are always wonderful, dynamic, smart, strong, and the best lovers in the world.

I am currently working on another new contemporary erotica romance in the Montana Promises series, which will be out in the first quarter of 2014.
I love hearing from readers, too!!

I also write as Melody Snow Monroe (www.melodymonroe.com)

Promises of Mercy
Montana Promises

Killing is wrong. The reason doesn’t matter.

When oncology nurse, Amber Delacroix, learns her reckless brother has been in a paralyzing motorcycle accident, sorrow fills her soul. He’s murdered a few days later, and now she’s utterly devastated. Adding to life’s cruelty, the cowboy cop assigned to her brother’s case brings her in for questioning.

Stone Benson, the paramedic who brought Amber’s brother into the hospital, stays by her side throughout the tragedy. He treats her with kindness and compassion—something she hasn’t experienced much in her life. Amber yearns for more than his comforting words, and they embark on a tremulous journey. Just when she feels that their relationship is at a turning point, he reveals that he likes to share his women with his good friend and roommate, Cade. That turns out to be a huge problem, because Cade is the cop who believes she’s guilty of killing her brother.

As chance would have it, another murder occurs when both Cade and Amber are in the same location. Realizing she’s not the mercy killer, Cade offers a heartfelt apology—one that includes dinner and a sharing of souls. When things heat up between them, she succumbs to his passionate ways. The big question that plagues her now is where does Stone fit in?

Stone knows exactly where Amber needs to be. Right between him and his best friend, Cade. He'll do whatever is necessary to convince her that she has finally met two men she can trust and build a life with.

Too bad the killer has other ideas. When he goes after Amber, what will the men need to do to save her in time to pursue a loving ménage relationship?

PUBLISHER’S NOTE: This adult contemporary romance contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable (double penetration, ménage, violence). Not intended for those under the age of 18.

CAVEAT: But if you love medical erotica with a contemporary western setting, this book is for you.


Amber ran a spatula over the little bit of batter that was left in the bowl. “Want a taste?” She waved the dollop of chocolate at Stone.

With his gaze plastered on her, he moved close and slowly licked his side of the rubber scrapper. She did the same, and their noses almost touched. Her body ignited at the closeness.

Once the extra batter was gone, he leaned back. “I have something else you might like.” He retrieved the can of whipped cream from the fridge and carried it with him into the living room. “Come on.”

“What are you going to do with that?” She followed him.

“I don’t want to wait for the best part.” He raised a brow. “You didn’t think I was going to waste this on the brownies, did you?” He grinned and her heart smiled.

“Oh, surely not.” Whipped cream was good for a lot more than a dessert topping.

He took her hand and dragged her down to the sofa. Stone shook the can and uncapped the lid. “Open up.”

This was going to get messy, but she obeyed. He pressed down the nozzle and swirled cold cream on her tongue. It tickled. She laughed as she swallowed the sweetness. The aftertaste was divine.

“Turnabout’s fair play.” Without waiting for him to hand over the can, she took it. “Open up, please.” She squirted the whipped cream into his mouth, purposefully missing.

He made an exaggerated motion of swallowing all of it, but a bit of cream remained right above his top lip. “You missed some.” Before he had a chance to lick it away, she swiped the cream from his lips and slipped her finger into his mouth. His eyes sparkled as he clamped down on her finger and ran his tongue around and around. Shards of electric shocks splintered along her spine.

Holy shit, the man was potent. Before he turned her on too much, she lowered her hand. “All clean.” She had to say something.

He took the can back, and instead of aiming for her mouth, he squirted some over her right breast. “Whoops.”

“Stone!” The shirt was a cotton blend, and the cream would wash out, but what was she to do now?

“I’m sorry, baby. Let me help you.” He dragged a thumb across her nipple but that only made the smear bigger. “That didn’t work, did it?” He gave her an exaggerated frown. When his mouth latched onto her breast, she cupped the back of his head. She groaned. Damned bra. She could barely feel his tongue. 

He sat up. “I think I made it worse. I know. I’ll wash it for you. Off it goes.”

Without giving her a chance to agree or object, he lifted the shirt over her head. Good thing she already decided she wanted to make love with him.
His cheery tone disappeared. “Holy fuck, baby. You are hot.”

Now it was her turn to smile. “What were you expecting?”

“I don’t know. Not something this perfect.” He leaned back. “No wonder Cade lost all control around you.”

She tossed him a coy smile. “It’s not all about physical attraction, you know. I want a man to see me as a person, to want me for who I am.” Damn. She hadn’t meant to get all philosophical on him. She’d been trying to keep things light.

He winced. “I fucked this up, didn’t I? I haven’t stopped thinking about you, and now that I’m with you, I’m making a mess of things.”

“No. I was kidding. Though I admit I want a man to appreciate what’s inside here.” She tapped a finger over her heart.

“I do appreciate you.” Stone clasped her hands in his. “You are an incredible person. Remarkable, in fact. You’re strong, brave, kind, and good-hearted. You are the cream on top of a brownie sundae.”

Now that made her laugh. “Okay. You’re forgiven.”

Stone pulled her into his arms and kissed her. Nothing was tentative about the way he took her. She didn’t wait for him to ask permission and opened up, needing to explore him. Their tongues collided and danced, sending joy straight through her. He tasted of spicy tomato topped with sweet cream, and she couldn’t get enough of him.

He broke the kiss and sucked in a breath. “God, but I’ve wanted to do that for so long.”

His kindness and considerate nature poured out of him. “Me, too.”

His thumb rubbed across her damp bra, and she wanted him to touch her heated skin. Just as she reached out to undo the buttons on his jeans, the damned timer sounded.

“Already?” They said in unison then laughed.

CODE WORD: Promise

Blog Post

I’ve set up five book signings so far this year, and I’m so excited to meet with readers. I love to know what they like and what they’re looking for in a good read. I’ll be visiting Orlando in Jan and June, Atlanta in March, New Orleans in May and possibly a bus tour to the northwest in August.

My New Year’s Resolutions:

(1) I’m dedicated to write the best book I can no matter how long it takes me. I plan to work hard to make believable, heroic, and lovable characters. There’s nothing better than falling in love over and over again.

(2) I want to make sure every book will be better than the last.  

Behind the Scenes

Ø What inspired you to write your first book?

My husband. I love romance and I love to read. I wanted to see if I could make magical characters worthy of love.

Ø Is there a message in your novel that you hope readers walk away with?

Hopefully, each novel has a different message. Sometimes it’s subtle, other times more blatant. Most of my themes are centered around the importance of listening. Only by trying to understand a person can you truly love them.

Ø What are your current projects?

I’m working on book 2 of Montana Promises, and then I want to explore the world of MF.

Ø Do you see writing as a career?

I can’t not write. Writing is my career—it is my life.

Ø Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

 I couldn’t stop reading romance books, and a large portion of my paycheck went to books. My husband suggested I try writing. Me? A person who loved math and who hated to write papers? Well, after attending RWA conferences and monthly meetings, I became a writer.

Ø How much research do you do?

I was very lucky to go on a camping trip with two medical doctors. It was so much fun to learn how they would kill a person. But it was perhaps the nurse I spend a weekend with who really opened my eyes to what goes on in a hospital. Sex in a chapel? Really?

Ø What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?

Getting the motivation of all the characters to mesh, and digging deep into who they are as people.

Ø Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?

Totally. That and the blurb are the keys.

Flash Round

What is your most cherished possession?
My wedding ring.

How do you feel, generally, about the opposite sex?
Love the opposite sex, especially if they have hot bodies.

What is your worst habit?
 Pushing people who care about me away

How do you think your exes would describe you?
Too driven

What would you never do, no matter the price?
Eat a cockroach

Daily Contest: Enter to win an ebook from her backlist and $15 Amazon gift card. Contest ends February 4th at Midnight. Please leave a comment with a valid email address to enter. Don’t forget to also enter the Grand Prize Rafflecopter with the code word found above! Come back every day to get a new code word and match it with the author's name! Each author has a unique code word.

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Jan 30, 2014

Ringing in the New Year with Mellanie Szereto!

When her fingers aren't attached to her keyboard, Mellanie Szereto enjoys hiking, Pilates, cooking, gardening, and researching for her stories. Many times, the research partners with her other hobbies, taking her from the Hocking Hills region in Ohio to the Colorado Rockies or the Adirondacks of New York. Sometimes, the trip is no farther than her garden for ingredients and her kitchen to test recipes for her latest steamy tale. Mellanie makes her home in rural Indiana with her husband of twenty-seven years, their two children, and two cats. She is a member of Romance Writers of America, Indiana Romance Writers of America, Hearts Through History Romance Writers, and PASIC.

Love Served Hot
Love on the Menu

As acting director of her uncle’s retirement village, Lilith Montgomery must hire a chef for the new restaurant. She’s interviewed several candidates, but instantly decides on the sexy Irishman whose culinary creations give her foodgasms. Her rotten luck with relationships makes her determined to resist her attraction to him, even if it means sneaking into the kitchen at night for a taste of his delectable entrées.

Flynn Hastings is finally getting his life back on track after a year of anger and guilt over his sister’s death. He’s returned home to be near his family and has found the perfect job—with one small problem. His boss makes him want to cook in more than the kitchen. Putting aside his hard and fast rule about mixing business with pleasure, he sets his sights on Lilith, hoping their budding friendship turns out to be more than a flash in the pan.


Plating two modest servings of iron skillet-seared salmon on beds of rice, Flynn added a sprig of fresh dill to each. He dropped a couple handfuls of pasta into the pot of boiling water and gave it a stir. The timer in his head set itself, the ticks so automatic he no longer had to check his watch.

He returned to the dining room to set a dish at Ms. Montgomery’s place, reciting the information she’d likely want to know. “Entrée number one. Dilled Salmon with Spinach and Brown Rice Pilaf. High in Omega-3 fatty acids, complex carbs, and iron. Moderate sodium content. Most vegetables and fresh mushrooms can be substituted for the spinach. And it’ll be served with a variety of sides.”

The aroma rising from the table made his stomach rumble. Taking the seat across from her, he waited for her to taste the offering.

She lifted the fork to her lips. Several moments passed with no indication of her like or dislike of the fish. The only movement of her face was an occasional blink and rhythmic chewing.

A bite of rice followed, her reaction as stiff and bland as the first one. He might’ve expected unresponsive behavior from a food critic, but not from a potential employer.

Unable to restrain his need to know if the food warranted the lack of emotion, he flaked off a piece of salmon and settled it on his tongue. The texture was perfect—not tough or chewy. A mix of mild fish flavor, salt, black pepper, and freshly chopped dill spread over his taste buds. It tasted exactly the way it had the thousands of times he’d prepared it.

Could the rice be the problem?

He slid the fork under the grains, certain he had the right proportion of spinach to rice. Leaning over the plate, he lifted the bite to his mouth. The rice was firm but not crunchy, the spinach and seasonings adding enough hint of flavor to complement the earthy tone of the dish.

Taking a peek at his dining partner, he finished chewing. He’d no more than swallowed when she shuddered and closed her eyes. They opened again, staring straight at him with a slightly glassy look as she pulled in a shaky breath.

Please don’t tell me she’s allergic to—

“Oh my.” She fanned her fingers at her face as she squirmed in her seat.

No cayenne. No hot pepper sauce. No peppers, period—not even black in the rice—and only the lightest dusting of freshly cracked on the fish.

Sifting through the ingredients in his mind didn’t help identify the culprit.

“Are you all right?”

Her tight smile didn’t reassure him. She lifted her napkin to dab at her lips, not quite hiding her quick exhale. “Um, yes. I’m fine. Good. Shall we try the next?”

Wasn’t she going to comment on the entrée? Or had she decided to wait until she’d completed the taste testing to evaluate the samples?
“Good” could’ve referred to the dish, couldn’t it?

Pushing up from his chair, he paused before setting off for the kitchen again. The dish had been better than good, and he shouldn’t put too much stock in her response. Confidence in his cooking skills had never been an issue for him.

Drain and dish up the pasta.

Ladle the sauce.

Position the port.


He was on his way in less than two minutes.

His judge slid her now-empty plate to the side and drained her glass.


She had to have inhaled the rest of her salmon and rice while he was gone. That fact alone eliminated the possibility of a known allergy to the fish.

Her gaze seemed glued to the dishes in his grasp. “This must be entrée number two. Campanelle and Portabellas with Roma Tomato Sauce.”

Flynn bit the inside of his cheek to keep from groaning aloud as he placed the pasta dish between her utensils. Her husky tone suggested she might prefer food to sex. A combination of the two would certainly be interesting.

Just what I need—to lose this gig before I get it. Focus, damn it!

He’d already risked making a bad impression with the stupid stocking comment, no matter how sexy her legs were. Adjusting the front of his chef’s coat to hide his body’s reaction to her voice, he refilled her glass and then rounded the table to sit opposite her again.

“Thanks.” This time she hesitated a couple seconds before picking up her fork and knife. “Tell me more about the vegetarian selection.”

Curious to see if her expression became an unreadable mask, he launched into a full description. “The pasta is made from chickpea flour instead of semolina. Higher protein, fewer carbs. Whole wheat or whole grain is another possibility, but I’d add a protein to the sauce to make up the difference. The ports are seared in olive oil for good fats. Freshly grated Parmesan for vegetarian, or without for vegan.”

She held her loaded fork near her chin. “Chickpea pasta sounds fairly expensive and not readily available. What protein options would you use?”

“Cannellini works really well. Marinated and sautéed tofu is another. Black beans.”

She gave a curt nod. The ruffled edge of the sauce-covered campanelle disappeared between her teeth. She looked more thoughtful than with the first entrée, her tongue sneaking out to lick her lips. Her fork clinked against the porcelain plate, and he held his breath for her verdict.

Her sudden gasp as she grabbed the edge of the table didn’t bode well. The small squeak probably meant she was in pain, and her fingertips turned white from her death grip.

Stumbling out of his seat, he rushed to her side. “You’re not all right. I’m not a doctor, but I’d guess acute appendicitis. Or maybe a really bad case of acid reflux.”

          She shook her head, sending her strawberry-blonde ponytail swinging back and forth. “Fine. I’m fine. Really. I just, um, bit my tongue.” Her chest rose and fell in a steady rhythm as she straightened in her seat. “You’re hired. Can you start work on Monday?”


Blog Post

Every December, I sit down with paper and pencil to make a list of my writing goals for the next year.

What’s on the list?

I always include a target word count, how many manuscripts I’d like to finish, which conferences and reader events I want to attend, milestones I’d like to achieve, where I plan to submit or whether I prefer to self-publish.  My Writing Tip Wednesday posts and author spotlights on my blog are part of my yearly plan as well. At the same time, I have to keep in mind what other responsibilities I have—like volunteering in my local RWA chapter and supervising my son’s homeschooling, which involves teaching and daily transportation to and from his tutoring sessions on the local university campus.

The year 2014 is shaping up to be a busy one. I have my Love on the Menu and Love on the Menu…With Extra Spice series to complete and publish. I’ll be spending time editing and polishing the first two books in my college-town contemporary series. Overall, my estimated word count totals 350,000. Yes, that means I have to sit my backside in the chair and write. Promo, edits, and formatting will also be an important part of self-publishing these books. Thankfully, I have an awesome cover artist to handle that particular detail.

My IRWA responsibilities for 2014 have expanded, but volunteerism and giving back to the organization that helped me get published is one of my priorities. Besides continuing as webmistress, I’ve added VP of the chapter board to my list of duties and I’m presenting a program on writing craft in April based on several of my Writing Tip Wednesday craft posts from 2013.

I’m planning to attend Lori Foster’s Reader-Author Get Together in Cincinnati and RWA’s National Conference in San Antonio this year to connect with readers and other authors. Both of those events will take time from writing, but I’ve figured that into my word count. I always come home energized and ready to write!

My list of goals is never out of sight when I’m home working at my desk. Are they lofty ones? Sure. If I don’t achieve everything I wrote down, the world won’t end, though. I prefer to challenge myself rather expect too little. Whatever is left on the list can go on next year’s, and I’ll remain sane!

Behind the Scenes

Ø What inspired you to write your first book?

I had voices and stories in my head that demanded to be heard and written!

Ø How did you come up with the title?

Titles typically pop into my head as I’m writing the story, but I’ve also brainstormed with my critique group. For the Love on the Menu series, I wanted to emphasize the heat level (hot but not erotic) and have a food-related theme to help readers identify the genre. Love Served Hot took a little thought since it’s the first book in the series. Red Hot Pepper and Hot Tamale Nights formed on their own as the characters hinted at the plot and conflict. The titles for the Love on the Menu…With Extra Spice short erotic novels are a mix of aha moments and brainstorming. Again, they follow the food theme.

Ø Is there a message in your novel that you hope readers walk away with?

Don’t let the fear of what could happen stop you from taking chances. The retirees in my story have been around long enough to know life doesn’t wait for you to live it.

Ø Are there any new authors who have grasped your interest?

My to-be-read pile is a mile high, and I’m very slowly making a dent in it. Here are few newer authors I’ve recently enjoyed:

I love Nan Reinhardt’s older heroines in her series, The Women of Willow Bay. I’m impatiently waiting for the next installment!

For a new male voice in romance, I have to mention Jim Cangany and his North Star Love Stories series. He takes his characters on amazing journeys.

I’m enjoying Kate SeRine’s Transplanted Tales as well. What fairytale could be better than Little Red Riding Hood in leather?

Ø What are your current projects?

I’m deeply entrenched in the Love on the Menu series. Books 2 and 3, Red Hot Pepper and Hot Tamale Nights, are in the works, along with the accompanying erotic series, Love on the Menu…With Extra Spice.

Besides my two foodie series, I’m also working on rewrites of several contemporary romances I wrote very early in my writing career. I’ve learned a lot about writing craft since those days.

Ø Name one person you feel supported you outside of family members.
Instead of one person, I have to name a group—Indiana Romance Writers of America. I couldn’t have asked for more supportive writer-friends. I’ve made invaluable friendships and learned so much about writing and publishing from my local chapter of RWA.

Ø Do you see writing as a career?

Yes, writing isn’t just a job, and it’s far more than a hobby. I plan to write for the rest of my life, and I love it!

Ø Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
My interest in writing started early with my love of reading. I still have a fourth-grade essay I wrote on what I wanted to be when I grew up. I’ll give you one guess what that was!

Ø Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
Flynn is a sweetheart. He’s always around when Lilith needs him—whether she’s in need of a little brawn, a shoulder to cry on, or a bit of moral support. Despite his attraction to her, he doesn’t push her to take their friendship to the next level before she’s ready.

He also has a soft spot for his nieces and the folks living at Montgomery Crossing Retirement Village.

Ø How much research do you do?

I’m a research nerd. I have books on everything from string theory to pirates to mythology to medieval armor. Since the Love on the Menu series focuses on food, I’ve spent a lot of time experimenting in the kitchen and searching for recipes online!

Ø Why do you write?

I love writing! Without it, my sanity would be questionable…

Ø What books are you reading at present?

I’m currently rereading the Lord of the Rings trilogy and a couple chapters into A Hunka Hunka Nursing Love by new author Kathryn Maeglin.

Ø Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?

Absolutely! The book cover is part of what creates the reader’s first impression. An attractive, professional-looking cover encourages the buyer to read the blurb and, in turn, the opening chapter(s) or excerpt. Clicking the buy button gets closer with each step!

Ø What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?
I’m traditionally e-published and self-published, and both have their advantages and disadvantages.

One of the biggest selling points of going through a publisher is the author doesn’t have to invest money to produce the book. By self-publishing, the author must spend money to make money. Some of those expenses can include hiring an editor, cover artist, and formatter, in addition to purchasing ISBNs and registering the copyright. While a publisher doesn’t charge the author for these services, royalty rates are lower than self-publishing and the publisher has the final say in many phases of production. Self-publishing means complete control over the process, but it also requires the author to spend time away from writing to handle the details. Not every author wants to give up writing time to research copy editors and cover artists. Others love the control of making all the decisions.

As with most aspects of writing and publishing, each author has to do what works best for her.

Flash Round

How do you feel about being the center of attention?
I’m an introvert. I don’t mind talking to people in social situations, but I have a hard time being the center of attention. If you want to give me an award, please don’t make me give a speech!

Do you have any irrational fears or phobias?
I can handle spiders, mice, and snakes, but cockroaches give me the willies. I’m not a fan of high places, either, even though I love rugged hiking.

How deeply does your job / social role define you as a person?
Being a writer is vital to who I am. It helps me maintain balance in my life, giving me an identity besides wife and mother. Much of my life revolves around homeschooling my son with Asperger’s, and writing allows me keep my sense of self.

What are you the most hopeless at?
I find keeping up with housework impossible!

What would you never do, no matter the price?
That’s an easy one! Bungie-jump. See fear of heights above…

Daily Contest: Enter to win a $10 Amazon gift card. Contest ends February 3rd at Midnight. Please leave a comment with a valid email address to enter. Don’t forget to also enter the Grand Prize Rafflecopter with the code word found above! Come back every day to get a new code word and match it with the author's name! Each author has a unique code word.

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Jan 29, 2014

Ringing in the New Year with Beth D. Carter!

I like writing about the very ordinary girl thrust into extraordinary circumstances, so my heroines will probably never be lawyers, doctors or corporate highrollers.  I try to write characters who aren't cookie cutters and push myself to write complicated situations that I have no idea how to resolve, forcing me to think outside the box.  I love writing characters who are real, complex and full of flaws, heroes and heroines who find redemption through love.

I’ve been pretty fortunate in life to experience some amazing things.  I’ve lived in France, traveled throughout Europe, Australia and New Zealand.  I am a mom to an amazing little boy.  I live in Los Angeles, surrounded by friends and family.  I hate washing dishes but I love cooking. I hate washing clothes but I love wearing them. Writing my bio is difficult because I never know what to say so I hope you like this one.  My favorite color is red but I look best in black (it’s slimming).  I hate people who don't pick up their dog's crap in public places, people who don’t use turn signals, and I really hate people who are rude and condescending. I especially hate discrimination in all and every form.  And although I love holding a book in my hand, I absolutely adore my ereader, whom I’ve named Ruby.  I love to hear from readers so I’ve made it really easy to find me on Twitter:

Lights, Camera, Love Story
Love Story Series

Jake Coolidge is Hollywood’s hot new star.  Growing up in Los Angeles among the film sets his father worked on, Jake knows fame is fickle so he lives life to the fullest.  He never has to search far for a pretty face with an amazing body to fill his bed, and he never, ever, promises fidelity.

Norah Scaritt has lived her whole life in a fantasy world.  Knowing she would never be the girl to wear a bikini or short shorts, she’s come to accept that she has curves even though she secretly wishes she was one of the slim, beautiful models that decorates Jake’s arm.

She’s written a movie script that she knows Jake will be perfect for, but she’s ill prepared for the magnetic attraction she feels for him.  As she tries to form a professional bond with him, his hot and cold attitude breaks her heart one too many times.  Can Jake save a love that he denied before he’s lost the only person that ever really mattered?


“Hello?” she asked softly.

“Hello, Norah Scaritt?” a deep male voice asked.


“This is Jake Coolidge. I work with your cousin Jill.”

Norah’s mind went blank. She pulled her phone away and looked at it, as if that was going to give her divine answers to thinking. Oh god! And that’s as far as her brain got.

“Hello? Miss Scaritt?”

“Uh…yes. I’m here.” She hoped Jake Coolidge could not hear the breathless quiver in her voice. She glanced behind her at the other customers and got out of line so she could have a private moment with Jake Coolidge!

She moved the phone away to clear her throat and then returned it. But it was impossible to steady her pounding heartbeat so she didn’t even try.

“Yes, Mr. Coolidge, I’m here. How may I help you?” She gave a fist pump her voice came out sounding normal.

“Last month Jill gave me your script to read and I was hoping we could meet for lunch and talk about it.”

Had she just died?

Because no frickin’ way had Jake Coolidge just asked her to lunch!

“Definitely,” she murmured calmly. “Is there a day that works well with you?”

“How about tomorrow?”

“I am free tomorrow.”

“Great. I live in Malibu. There’s a great little café on the PCH, just past Las Floras Canyon Road called The Applegate. Meet me there about noon?”

“That sounds nice. Thank you for your call.”

He gave a smooth chuckle. “My pleasure. See you tomorrow, Miss Scaritt.”

And he clicked off.

Norah stood there for a long moment, staring at her phone, wondering if she’d just dreamed the whole conversation with Jake Coolidge.

Jake frickin’ Coolidge!

She jumped up in the air with a whoop of joy and then danced in a circle. It took her a few minutes to realize that she was still in the post office and everyone in line was looking at her and smiling.

She held up the phone. “Good news.”

The woman closest to her smiled. “Congratulations. Is this your package?”

“Oh. Yeah. Holy heck, I’ve got to run. Thank you!”

She grabbed the box and hurried out the door, her fingers already speed-dialing Jill. Her cousin answered on the second ring.

“Guess who I have a lunch date with tomorrow?” she asked, not even bothering to give a greeting.

“Um, Brad Pitt?”

“Why would I have a lunch date with Brad Pitt?”

“How would I know?”

“Jake Coolidge called me!”

“Really? He must have read your screenplay!”

“Yep. That’s what he wants to talk about. What do you think that means?”

“I think it means he wants to talk about your screenplay.”


Blog Post

Another year is on our doorstep.  Out goes 2013 and in comes the promise of something new, something better.  New Year’s Eve builds our hope that the coming year will be different.  That we’ll be different.  Some will vow to finally lose weight.  Some will vow to quit smoking, work harder, be a better person or spend more time with the kids.  Resolutions are a tradition and yet breaking them is also a tradition.  Some of us even make bets on when they’ll be broken.

I make the same pledge every year…to live life to the fullest of each day.  And I don’t mean I have to go out and climb a mountain every day.  What I mean is living life to the needs and wants I have that morning when I wake up.  It may be just getting enough energy to take a shower after a night of insomnia.  It may be finishing the chapter that’s been giving me a headache.  Or, it may simply be taking my son to the park after school.  I never want to realize at the end of the day that I didn’t do something that made me feel good about myself.
But that doesn’t mean I don’t an extra resolution or two.  My family is taking a trip to Japan in 2017 to climb Mt. Fuji and I need to be in shape to hike up that mountain so I resolve to hit the gym at least three days a week.  I also resolve to be a bestselling writer (hey, positive thoughts never hurt anyone, right?). 

For whatever resolution you may have or make, I wish you nothing but the best.  Happy New Year, the birth of 2014.  I raise my glass and toast to the promise of a new beginning.  Happy writing.  Happy reading.

Behind the Scenes

Ø How did you come up with the title?

I have to give credit to my boyfriend, Brian, for coming up with the title. I told him the plot and he blurted it within seconds.  Brilliant!  Each book in the series (this is book #3) has the words Love Story in the title: Love Story for a Snow Princess, Once Upon a Love Story, & Lights, Camera, Love Story.

Ø What are your current projects?
I am working on a trilogy about a motorcycle club.  Two books are complete so I’m plucking away on the third.  After that, I may start on the fourth Love Story book.

Ø Do you see writing as a career?

Absolutely.  Right now, I’m a full time writer and full time mom.  Both keep me very busy.

Ø Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

I can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be a writer. I was constantly creating stories up in my head.  My son, who is seven, does the exact same thing.  He’s always making stories up which he then translates to drawing them out (story boarding) and then moves on to creating computer games.  Seriously.  He has this program that allows him to create games.  At seven!

Ø Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

The hero of Lights, Camera, Love Story, Jake Coolidge, has a very skewered ideal of love.  His parents fought all the time and when he was eighteen, his famous director father got a fifteen year old girl pregnant.  So when he meets Norah, and begins to fall for her, he’s very scared of his emotions so he tries to deny them.  But he can’t seem to stay away from her.  He has a lot of soul searching to do and Norah has to learn to go after what she wants. 

Ø How much research do you do?

My boyfriend works in the film industry so I had a lot of first hand knowledge for Lights, Camera, Love Story.  But I do a lot of research when I need to because I want things to be as accurate as possible, especially when I write a historical.

Ø Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers?

I’ve never co-written with someone else, but I just finished a novella for a dream anthology coming out sometime in 2014 (check out my blog for updates).  I’m really excited about the love story, which revolves around the concept of past lives and soul mates.

Ø Do you think that the cover plays an important part in the buying process?
Definitely!  As a reader the first thing that draws me to a book is the cover.  As an author, I’ve felt the sting of a bad cover.  My book, Dreamland, is a time travel book that didn’t sell at all and I strongly feel it’s because of a terrible cover.  I hate to say that but I’ve even had people tell me that.

Flash Round

What is your most cherished possession?
My son, although he’s not really a possession, is he?  Maybe his love, then.  Can that be a possession?  Or memories of my father and grandmother.  But if we’re talking strickly something material, then it would be my grandfather’s coffee mug.  It’s nothing special and can be found in any store, but because it was his it’s the most beautiful mug that’s ever been made.

How do you feel about being the center of attention?
When I was in my twenties I craved being the center of attention.  Now, I just want to be the center of attention in my boyfriend’s eyes.

What is your worst habit?
I’m a very introverted person and I tend to not show my emotions.  Sometimes I can tell this frustrates my boyfriend.  I’m wrapped up so much in my own head and in my character’s heads that I tend to ignore him.

Do you have any irrational fears or phobias?
I don’t like touching raw meat.  I have to wear gloves whenever I handle it to cook.  And if I do happen to touch raw meat then I have to scrub my hands.  I don’t know what they call raw meat-germaphobes but I’m one of those.

How do you think your exes would describe you?
I don’t have that many exes, and I’m friends with some of them.  So I would hope to say that I’m a nice person.  Except for Ben.  He’d probably say I’m a bitch.

What are you the most hopeless at?
Getting a good night’s sleep.  I suffer from an over active brain that won’t shut down no matter how tired I am…and I’m always tired!

What would you never do, no matter the price?
Sky dive, bungee jump, or let bugs crawl over me.  That scene in Indiana Jones & the Temple of Doom, where Willie has to pull the lever covered in bugs?...Indy would’ve died.  It would’ve been a short movie.

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