Jennie Marts | Five Reasons We Love Cowboys
Author Guest / September 30, 2016

Cowboys make great heroes. They’re strong and rugged and oh so sexy! I’m originally from a small town in Kansas where I grew up on a farm and was riding horses as soon as I could get my feet in the stirrups, and I know there is just something special about the country and small town life. But what is it about those men that wear boots and Stetsons that makes us swoon and sigh and dream of riding off into the sunset on the back of their horse? Here’s my list of just Five Reasons We Love Cowboys… John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Scott Eastwood, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Tim McGraw, Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, Keith Urban, and of course, the man who put ‘sexy’ in the phrase ‘sexy cowboy’…Sam Elliott. Enough said. Cowboys are raised to be gentleman with a code of honor and a respect for women. They open doors, say ‘yes ma’am’, and generally have a sense of chivalry. And there’s something about that deep slow drawl that feels like warm honey dripping down your spine. Cowboys are rugged. They’re tan and have great muscles built from working outdoors hauling bales of hay and driving…

A Gift Of Kindness
Author Guest / September 30, 2016

Sometimes the smallest of actions reaps the biggest outcomes. What to one person, acknowledging a waiter by name, thanking for the refill of water for a parched customer, is a truly small thing but the action can brighten a day. I’ve always loved the commercial that has person after person passing it on, and watching the smiles on each person growing bigger and bigger. One job growing up that I never understood was the task of going to an older person in the community and cleaning or straightening up as an act of stewardship. I always thought, why can’t they do it? As the oldest it was my job to make sure our house was clean, the supper on the table when my father came home, so surely, this old woman could clean her own house. I was put in charge of our house when I was eleven and this woman was ancient. And I was definitely not being paid for it. This was worse than babysitting, also a task I never looked forward to doing. But my grandmother insisted I go once a month and spend Saturday afternoon helping Mrs. Curtis. So, grandmother’s word was law and off I…

Mike Lynch | Is It Worth It?
Author Guest / September 30, 2016

To quote from the classic novel, A Tale of Two Cities, “It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.” This in large part has been my experience with the topsy-turvy, take no prisoners world of publishing. Like many aspiring writers I fanaticized for years what it would be like being a published author, such as seeing my novel proudly sitting on the bookstore shelf, or greeting eager fans waiting to get my autograph, or going on talk shows to share pearls of literary wisdom in front of enthusiastic audiences. But like most dreams, the reality has not quite lived up to the fantasy. How many of us have toiled in front of our computers for months and years, honing our work, polishing it to a high sheen, hoping our story grabs the attention of an acquisition editor. After receiving one rejection after another, in the mail comes THAT letter, the one that says The Really Smart Publishing House wants to publish your story. I’ve had the privilege of getting that letter. When it finally happened for me, I felt like I was on top of the world. A publisher actually wanted to publish my novel. But…

Elaine Stock | When A Heroine Swoons Over Someone She Shouldn’t
Author Guest / September 30, 2016

All Isabelle, my heroine in ALWAYS WITH YOU, wants is to be loved without conditions. She’s eighteen, has healed from a health setback, and after losing her mom years ago and being raised by an emotionally distant father and grandmother, wants her Prince Charming. In her mind, she doesn’t care what faith or race or background he is because she’s certain that when her heart tells her who this destined man is, she’ll have no problem recognizing him. In the meantime, she’s not especially seeking him, will wait patiently, and is ready for love when it grabs her. Love, in the very real body of an attractive young man, pays a needed visit just in time to even call him a true hero! Tyler intervenes when a gang of punky teens has less than stellar plans for Isabelle. But, many eyes around her small Adirondack town, let alone her own dad, are suspicious of the community where Tyler lives. She’s forewarned of possible dangers, but chooses to see only the Wonderful in Tyler and The Faithful, and that’s with a Capital W. What causes a fairly intelligent woman to fall for a man that society sees as less desirable? In…

Nina Crespo | Ultimate Alpha Hero Lineup
Author Guest / September 29, 2016

Developing characters for my romance stories requires inspiration. My volume of names is usually where I start. It lists the meaning and origin of names, as well as associated gemstones, colors, and elements. It helps tremendously with character profiles, but sometimes I need visual inspiration. This was true in writing The Song series. If you haven’t read the books, let me share what the trilogy is about. Two of the alpha heroes served as Army Rangers along with their friends. The team was facing death when Dalir, an ancient warrior, gave them a second chance at life. He also shared one of his special abilities with them: Time travel. They use this gift to protect people. When they’re not facing danger, they play music. Their band, Thane’s Redemption, gives them an outlet from the stress of their quest and serves as a cover between missions. In short, hot guys in a band with supernatural abilities, teamed with an equally tough, drool-worthy, ancient warrior, on a mission to save the world. A dream team was a great visual aid and inspiration for writing the books. Here are my picks for The Song series alpha males. Kit Harington as the hero in…

LYRIC AND LINGERIE is here!
Author Spotlight / September 27, 2016

Hi Everyone! I am so thrilled to be in the Fresh Fiction newsletter today talking about my brand new book, LYRIC AND LINGERIE! It’s my first ever self-published book and now that it’s making its way into the world, I’m excited and nervous all at the same time. L & L is a lot lighter and funnier than the books you usually see from me and I’m dying to hear what you think of it. I co-wrote it with my dear friend, Katie Graykowski (who is one of the funniest and kindest women I have ever met) and we had entirely too much fun coming up with our characters and the zany situations we put them in. Here’s the blurb: From New York Times Bestselling author Tracy Wolff and International Bestselling author Katie Graykowski comes a sexy tale of love, laughter and lingerie … Lyric Wright is an off-beat astrophysicist whose life is falling apart around her. After losing her fiancé to a hula dancing astrologer and losing her dress to an ill-fated leap of faith, she’s sure there’s nowhere for her life to go but up. At least until she sits down on a trans-Pacific flight next to the…

Warren Rochelle | Why Do You Write?
Author Guest / September 27, 2016

Tell us about your Love Affair with Writing My love affair with writing began in the third grade when I read The Chronicles of Narnia and fell in love. I fell in love with Narnia (my deep imprint for how Faerie should be), and with storytelling. I decided then I wanted to be a writer when I grew up. I wrote my own Narnia story, but with a few twists. What I remember now is that there was no High King, instead a High Queen. I think her name was Louise. Instead of centaurs, I had bucentaurs (half-human, half-cow). These creatures I found in some forgotten mythological resource or from browsing in the dictionary. The other detail that comes to mind all these years later is that in this Other World country there was a Plain of Fire and a Plain of the Moon. The former, golden grass; the latter, silver. I had it “bound” in a 3-ring notebook wrapped in a blue-and-white cloth I rescued from my mother’s scrap basket. I’ve never looked back. I’ve been in love with writing, with storytelling, and with one author or another ever since. I try to write every day, even if that…

Vella Munn | Character Possession
Author Guest / September 27, 2016

Being possessed by a character is a kind of out of body experience. For me, it’s as if someone or something real has taken over my mind, and I have no choice but to hold on for the ride. Most times the experience results in those light bulb moments when I actually believe I’m brilliant—or rather the characters that have spun themselves out of dust and cobwebs are brilliant. I’m just along to document their lives in ways readers can connect with. Case in point, I’ve been writing romance fiction to the tune of somewhere in the neighborhood of 60 plus books. Only rarely does a fictional character charge at and through me like Winter Barstow has. Sad to say, Winter existed long before I completed a story that satisfied both of us. Death Chant, I believe, does that. It’s a book of the heart. All I can do is hope readers of this romantic suspense with paranormal elements in the form of a ghostlike wolf will understand why I feel the way I do. Getting back to Winter, I can’t recall when she first started insisting I listen to her. I initially became aware of a lonely voice visiting…

Susan Fox | Of Cats, Dogs and Redemption
Author Guest / September 27, 2016

More specifically, how “Save the Cat,” a trip to the San Diego Zoo, a sprinkle of Christmas magic dust, and a warm, wonderful heroine helped me figure out how to (hopefully!) make readers love my hero as much as I do. Mo Kincaid used to be a sinner. He knows it, he owns it, and he’s turned his life around. Even so, he’s a loner, a man who fixes vehicle engines and avoids getting close to people—because in his twenties he hurt everyone he cared for. When HOLIDAY IN YOUR HEART starts, Mo has returned to Caribou Crossing, the small Western town he left many years ago, abandoning his wife and son. He now feels compelled to see them and offer his sincere apology, and see if there’s any way to make amends. He thinks no further than that. He never dreams, because he doesn’t believe he deserves to dream. The last thing he imagines is that he might become part of a family and find an amazing woman to share his life. But long before any happy ending could happen, I needed the reader, right up front, to see that this man, a true lost soul, was capable of…

Sandra Owens | Fur Babies, Real and Imagined…
Author Guest / September 27, 2016

Hello friends, Welcome to the first Fur Babies, Real and Imagined… Each month, I’ll be talking about those little four-legged creatures that steal their way into our hearts. I never planned to have animals in my books, but the furry devils just kept popping up—Peggy, a three-legged cat in THE LETTER, Mr. Bunny, a rabbit in LOST IN HER, Pretty Girl and Sally, war dogs in ONLY HER. All of my books have at least one animal of one kind or other in them, probably because I love the creatures, especially cats. In ONLY HER, book five of the K2 Special Services series, my hero, Cody, suffers from PTSD, but his war dogs give him a reason to get up each morning. That is a creation of my mind. There is a fabulous real organization, Warrior Canine Connection, that… Well, here it is in there own words. “Warrior Canine Connection is a pioneering organization that utilizes clinically based Canine Connection Therapy to help wounded Warriors reconnect with life, their families, their communities, and each other.” Warrior Canine Connection is a fabulous organization that pairs a dog with a wounded warrior hero. If you’d like to check them out, their website…