Cynitha Eden | Getting Lost In A Book
Uncategorized / May 30, 2008

I love to get lost in a good book. Love to let the hours slip away as I become drawn into a great read. I love to laugh and cry and have my husband look at me like I’m crazy. Oh, yeah, sometimes getting lost in a book can be a wonderful thing. When I’m reading—I want to get so drawn into a story that I consider myself lost. But, when I’m writing a book, well, getting lost can have a whole new meaning for me… I’m finishing up work on my latest novel, part of my “Midnight” paranormal series for Kensington Brava. And I have to say—I think I’ve gotten lost in this book—but not necessarily lost in the good way. You see, all of my free time is consumed by this book. I’m so deeply into my demon story that all my energy is consumed by the tale. So that means the rest of my life is getting a bit lost, too. I walked into my dining room earlier and wondered when all of the lights in the chandelier (there are twelve of them) had stopped working. Surely not all at once. This had to be a gradual…

Jessica Andersen | Of Mayan Myths and Hot Men
Uncategorized / May 29, 2008

As I talk to people about NIGHTKEEPERS, one question that comes up repeatedly is one of inspiration, and how I came to take pieces of ancient Mayan mythology and bring them into a modern day paranormal romantic thriller. Given that I’m a scientist by training and have spent the last bunch of years writing medical romantic suspense, it might seem a little off-topic for me to be writing about Mayan mythology. But really it isn’t. . . it goes back to being a little kid and visiting a big pyramid. This was back when Cancun was just starting to become Americanized. My parents and I stayed at small local hotels and took rattling bus tours to Mayan ruins across the Yucatan. I soaked up enough Spanish to ask where the bathroom was, and to order a burger and Coke. More, I learned how the Mayans were masters of astronomy, and how they played a winner-loses-head ball game in huge, open-ended ball courts. I discovered flan (and subsequently Montezuma’s revenge), haggled at open-air markets, and learned a bit about how the coming of the Conquistadors in the early 1500s had changed the landscape forever. Ever since, I’ve been fascinated with the…

Kate Walker | Swamped by Spaniards
Uncategorized / May 28, 2008

As I write for Harlequin Presents, I often have to decide on the nationality of my hero. And part of the fantasy of Mills & Boon Modern/Harlequin Presents is the fact that the heroes are more often than not Mediterranean men – Italians, Spaniards, and those so very-very popular Greek Tycoons. The Greek Tycoon books just fly off the shelf but I can’t always be writing a Greek hero – that would bore me, and my readers – and besides sometimes it seems that everyone else in the world is writing Greek hero story. There are characteristics that fit some nationalities, and some that are more suited to others, and so I need to take these into consideration when I’m choosing my hero. And that’s what I’m doing at the moment – starting work on a brand new story. My latest titles (my 54th) has just been accepted and my editor is ringing me this week to discuss future plans so I have to have some ideas to talk over with her. So right now I have just the seed of an idea. My hero won’t be a Greek though. I wrote a Greek hero the books before last and…

Toni McGee Causey | The Tipping Point…
Uncategorized / May 27, 2008

Eleventy quibillion years ago, when I was in fourth grade, I wanted to be a writer. I wrote terrible poems, which I think only got worse as I got older and the teenage years descended like locusts, leaving only WOE and ANGST. By college, I had brief bouts of sanity, whereupon I attempted architecture (ohmyGod, they do not tell you about the math), business (my first accounting teacher gave me the final exam in advance, with the answers, if I would swear to her I would never, ever, take another accounting class again), and then journalism (where I learned they had the picky little annoying habit of wanting reporters to not make crap up)(this was before Fox News). And in spite of a fine history of liking to eat and wanting a roof over my head, I still wanted to be a writer. If you asked a question, you would get a story instead of an answer. If I could sidetrack into a couple of tangents? You might as well park a while, because the stories? They would not stop. All the while, I wrote. Much of it was bad. I ran into a former high-school teacher, who’d also been…

Summer Begins…A New Adventure ???
Uncategorized / May 26, 2008

The start of summer…and so it begins, my renewed search for more books. It’s an addiction and it never rests. I sometimes wished I’d get more enjoyment from watching television or movies but to be terribly honest there is nothing like a good book to satisfy the longing inside me of finding a new world, one that exists only in the imagination of a storyteller and writer. A good book takes me far away from my every day life to an exotic world that is exciting and yet “real.” A great story telling can uncover nuggets in a world I may inhabit and interact with daily yet never noticed the truths beneath the surface. Yes, I read to escape and to be entertained. This weekend was the US release of the latest Indiana Jones movie, so of course we had to go and see it opening weekend — at least we went matinee since prices are outrageous in my opinion. And it was cooler than being out doors in the 90 plus heat, yes, summer has officially arrived in Texas. The anticipation was palpable after all it had been nearly 20 years since the “Last Crusade” and this one with…

Karen White | Southern Women’s Fiction: It’s More Than Just An Accent!
Uncategorized / May 23, 2008

When people ask me what I write, I tell them that I write ‘Southern women’s fiction’. To clarify, I usually follow that with the (hopefully) more clear ‘grit lit.’ Although that frequently elicits a grin or two, it rarely seems to explain what it is that I try and create on the pages of my novels. I stick with the adage to ‘write what I know’ and I know the South. My father’s family has lived in the South since before the American Revolution and both of my parents were born and raised in Mississippi–my father on the Gulf coast and my mother in the Delta. I have relatives still living there that most people from other parts of the country would need a translator to understand. But when I hear them speak, I simply feel as if I have found home. Yeah, sure, I’ve created more than my share of hunky Southern men who drawl and even use the word ‘darlin’. But writing Southern women’s fiction is so much more than the accent. It’s primarily a sense of place, and stocked with those inherently wacky yet familiarly beloved Southern characters (remember Aunt Pittypat?)–most of whom I’ve met or find…

Natalie Anderson | Being Fearless
Uncategorized / May 22, 2008

Everyone has dreams and ambitions, don’t they? At least, I hope everyone does because dreams can be one of the most fun things in life – there is nothing like sitting somewhere (anywhere) and indulging in a daydream. You can dream about anything – let your mind wander and suddenly you can do whatever, be whatever… then, when you’ve come up with a really good one – you can try to write it down… Cue the start of the author’s nightmare!!! Seriously though, if we didn’t dream, we couldn’t achieve things right? And often to make your dreams become reality you have to be brave. It can be terrifying to throw in the good, stable job to chase the career in the high risk area you dream of, it can be damn scary letting your mum read the love scenes in the novel you’ve written, and I figure it’d be frightening when you’ve saved every cent you can so you can go jump out a plane at however many thousand feet – just because you’ve always wanted too … what were you thinking??!!!!! I think sometimes, to be able to realise our dreams, to be fearless, we need the help…

Linda Francis Lee | The Inner Debutante in You
Uncategorized / May 21, 2008

When it comes to debutantes, it takes all kinds to make the world go round. In THE EX-DEBUTANTE Carlisle Cushing is a debutante who has always been a fish out of water, the odd duck in a world of swans. So she hardly fits into any category. In fact, she left her Texas high society world to become a determined lawyer far away in Boston . . . then committed the unforgivable sin (as far as her deeply southern mother is concerned) of becoming engaged to a Yankee. Then all of the sudden she can’t believe it when she gets dragged back to Texas to take over the debutante ball . . . and comes face to face with the man she loved and lost. Take the quiz below to find your own inner deb! What Kind of a Debutante Are You? When you are in line ready to make your official bow, you: hope the deb in front of you face plants into the floor cracking her porcelain veneers have warned the photographer to capture your best side are certain you will be voted Deb of the Year pray you aren’t the deb who face plants into the floor…

Brian Freeman | Are Crime Thrillers Moral?
Uncategorized / May 20, 2008

It’s an odd way to make a living when you think about it. We write about things that would terrify and dismay people if they were real. Murder. Serial killers. Violence. And we do all this to entertain people. I think about this issue whenever a news show covers an intimate tragedy like the disappearance of Natalee Holloway in Aruba or Madeleine McCann in Portugal. Cable news shows play on our love of mystery and drama to boost ratings. The difference is that, unlike a novel, the crime is real. Our news programs treat these dramas as whodunits, to an extent that we often cheapen or even forget the actual tragedy. The question is: Are those of us who write mysteries any different? We invent our stories, but we strive to make the fear, crime, and drama real for the reader. The best writers make us gasp and cry, afraid to turn the page, but unable to put the book down. My only explanation is that mysteries make us confront difficult moral choices and decide for ourselves. Mysteries also give us something that the real world often cannot. Order. Resolution. Truth. The frustration in watching the news is in not…

Michelle Styles | Confessing My Sin
Uncategorized / May 19, 2008

Before I decided to take my writing seriously, I was many authors’ worst nightmare. I was the person who always said – some day I want to write a novel. One day when I have time, I want to be an author. You name the eye rolling phrase about wanting to be an author, or desiring to write and I said it. I said it but I did nothing about actually achieiving the goal. People would ask me jokingly if I had finished that novel yet.I won’t bother to rehearse my excuses, just know that they were good and that I never finished a manuscript. I would start and then, something would happen. It never seemed as good on paper as in my imagination. Or life would get in the way. I won’t bother to rehearse my excuses, just know that they were good and that I never finished a manuscript. I would start and then, something would happen. It never seemed as good on paper as in my imagination. Or life would get in the way. What changed my attitude? In short, I became ill with gall stones and thought now or never. I became determined to achieve my…