Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss

Years ago, I had the opportunity to interview singer-songwriter Kate Campbell, who remains one of my favorite artists. Kate talked about something she called “Southern noir,” which has nothing to do with crime novels and everything to do with sense of place. At certain spots in the South, you get the feeling that something is happening beneath the surface, something—maybe even something on the dark side—that you can feel but can...

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My new release, THE BILLIONAIRE’S UNEXPECTED BABY , centers around an unconventional couple who is preparing for the arrival of a baby who is…well, unexpected. This one was a lot of fun to write. Being a mother myself, I could relate to a lot of the anxiety my characters experienced as they awaited the big day. Of course, I didn’t have my friends running a pool on my relationship and the only baby daddy drama I had was with my husb...

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Meg Ryan nailed it. In You’ve Got Mail, bookstore owner Kathleen Kelly (Ryan) stands behind the counter of The Shop Around the Corner and insists, “When you read a book as a child, it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does.” “Hear! Hear!” I remember books and their characters from my childhood as if they were living, breathing folk—animals and humans alike. I could b...

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I had a conversation with a friend the other day, debating why independent-minded, strong-willed women crave alpha males. She, being one of these women with quite an affinity for the fictional Christian Grey, said “it’s not that I want to be dominated out in the real world—just in the bedroom.” So I mentally tapped my chin, pondering my own fascination with alpha males. Yes, I married one. So there’s no denying I’...

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The main theme of my newly released YA/SciFi novel, THE VANISHING SPARK OF DUSK, is to “Be Heard”. While that mantra is primarily focused on my main lead, Lark (who’s naturally quiet and reserved), this theme is also geared toward the romantic relationship in this story. There are SO. MANY. BOOKS. out there. Thankfully they’re starting to encourage people to love and listen and respect each other, but there are still th...

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When I first began writing historical fiction as a young girl, I was a blank slate about petticoats, bum rolls, stays, jumps, busks, stockings and garters, and whatnot. Fast forward many years and nine published novels later, and I’m still learning with each novel I write, and have discovered that the best way to dress my heroine is to dress myself. I don’t want to create heroines who dress in fashions and underpinnings I know litt...

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If any of you follow me on social media, you’ll know I’m a bit of a paper product junkie. I’m a diehard devotee to my paper planner, and I love setting goals each year with a goal-setting workbook I have. However, one of my newer loves is my reading journal. Like many of you, I keep track of what I read in Goodreads. I love having a searchable list and participating in their annual reading challenge. However, because I’...

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Write, write, write. I plan to have two new wolf books and a jaguar book for 2018, need to figure out who and what. For the jaguar one, I want Howard, the former Enforcer, who desperately needs a mate. I envision in him in the jungle, where all big cats need to get away, and the Enforcer she-cat who is ready to put him on her hitlist if he doesn’t toe the line. And one of Grant’s brothers, for a new Highland Wolf book. Not sure abo...

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If you could invite any five characters (from books or movies or TV) to dinner, who would they be and why? It’s impossible to pick only five fictional characters I could invite to dinner. Would I fill my table with superheroes like Thor and Captain America (for the view, obviously), or a more classic George Bailey, C.K Dexter Haven, Rhett Butler trio? Fill each seat with TV characters who make me laugh like Ron Swanson and Jim Halpert wi...

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I’ve always believed that to be passionate about something is a gift. Personally, passions give me something to dream about, to look forward to, and to pour my love, energy, and excitement into. The nature of some interests is to evolve as we do, sometimes even disappearing entirely to make room for new ones that fit into the different stages of our lives. Other things become essential to us, a part of our very natures, and settle deep i...

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Deborah LeBlanc | When Stereotypes Are in Stereo
Uncategorized / September 29, 2008

As a writer, I work hard at breaking away from stereotypes, which isn’t always easy, especially if it involves a culture you’re not that familiar with. Such was the case with GRAVE INTENT, my second book. One of the main characters was from a particular Roma clan, and I knew very little about gypsies except what I’d seen on television or read in books. A good bit of research, including spending time with an actual Roma family, did wo...

Sandi Shilhanek | Series
Sundays with Sandi / September 28, 2008

For the last couple of weeks I’ve been reading the Bakery Sisters Trilogy by Susan Mallery. People who know me best know that I love connected stories. I tend to horde the first and second book until the third becomes available, and then read them back to back to back.While for a short series that will release quickly this is a great plan, but for a longer series such as the In Death books this does not work. When Naked In Death by J...

Joy Nash | October Favorites
Uncategorized / September 26, 2008

Apples – I just can’t get into eating apples in the summer. Once fall comes, it’s like I’m discovering apples all over again. I like the tart kind. Braeburn and the new Honeycrisps. Hot, homemade soup – Something else I don’t make or eat in the summer. It’s a great easy meal for autumn. (Today’s soup is split pea.) Fall foliage – I lived in Florida for a while as a teenager, and I...

Daniella Brodsky | Inspiration
Uncategorized / September 25, 2008

Whenever I give readings, the first question I am always asked is, “Where do you get your inspiration?” I think this is a wonderful question, and when I interview artists across all mediums, for the various magazine articles I write, I always ask them the very same thing. The truth is, at least to me, and to those many artists I’ve questioned, is that inspiration comes in so many ways—some very simple, some more complex a...

Lee Aaron Wilson | Western Outlaws
Uncategorized / September 24, 2008

Billy Killdeere is Western romantic historical fiction, right? Right. Is Billy Killdeere an outlaw, a lover, or both?He was raised an outlaw and becomes the best gunman in his gang, but he also respects women and treats them like ladies. Part of the story has him helping a young woman in a whore house where the gang hides out. There’s gunplay and then later when he’s on the run, he’s remembered as the man who rescue...

Elizabeth Boyle | Baking Cookies
Uncategorized / September 23, 2008

My son had this past Friday off from school. Imagine me, standing before the calendar and thinking to myself, “Only two weeks into school and already the teachers are shipping them home?” Haven’t they a care for my poor nerves? to quote the always quotable Mrs. Bennett. And since it was only the littlest hero and me at home, we decided to bake cookies. He loves the measuring and the mixing, and we all love cookies, so it’s a win all ...

Margo Candela | Little Darlings
Uncategorized / September 22, 2008

I spent most of my spring and all of my summer finishing my fourth novel, How Can I Tell You? (Touchstone, August ’09). Hours blurred into days which turned into weeks which…well, you get the idea. The only thing I really remember about this time is asking myself every morning as I sat down and every night as I curled up into a fetal position in bed was, “How the heck did I manage do it the last three times?” You’d think that I’d hav...

Sandi Shilhanek | Carpooling
Sundays with Sandi / September 21, 2008

Recently my husband and I had to begin carpooling. Our youngest son achieved one of his life’s goals…he got a driver’s license. That meant he could drive to school rather than horror of horrors take the bus. It also meant that because he was now 16 he could enroll in work-study and get out of school early. While he thinks he’s really hot stuff he hasn’t given much if any thought to the impact of being a driver without free access to ...

Deanna Raybourn | Writer’s Passion
Uncategorized / September 19, 2008

As a writer of historical fiction, I am frequently asked about research. Specifically, readers—and aspiring writers—want to know if it is necessary for me to visit the sites I write about. On this point I always give a firm and unequivocal yes. And no. Contradictory, I know, but hear me out. Developing a historical novel means creating a dual setting; it means creating a specific time and place for your reader to inhabit. They are a ...

Deborah Cooke aka Claire Delacroix | New Worlds from Familiar Names – and Familiar Faces with New Names!
Romance / September 18, 2008

One of the interesting things about the popular fiction market is the way that it changes. Tastes in fiction are fluid, and constantly on the move as people develop interests in new areas, or ideas come into fashion. I think that this dynamism, while it can be frustrating, is also fascinating. And it offers authors the chance to try new things. Many of you will be familiar with the medieval romances that I wrote in the 1990’s. ...