Wednesday, May 28, 2014

5 SECRETS (What No One Knows About My Book)

Our guest author today is Jessie Cleaver, who is going to share some tidbits about the writing of her book that no one knows--until today.                        

In the second grade, Jessie began a story about a duck and a lost ring.  Two harrowing pages of wide ruled notebook paper later, the ring was found.  And Jessie has been writing ever since.
Armed with the firm belief that women in the Regency era could be truly awesome heroines, Jessie began telling their stories in her Spy Series, a thrilling ride in historical espionage that showcases human faults and triumphs and most importantly, love.
Jessie makes her home in the great state of New Hampshire where she lives with her husband and a very opinionated Basset Hound.  For more, visit

5 Things You Don’t Know About A Countess Most Daring

1.) Thatcher’s name was originally Anthony Matthews.
2.) In the first draft, Thatcher believed Kate was married.  After all, she wasn’t born a countess, so how else would she have gotten that title?
3.) I had designed a completely different cover for it that got horribly rejected by my beta readers.  (Be glad that cover didn’t make it!)
4.) Kate is based on a friend of mine in real life who is actually a six foot tall actress.
5.) I never planned to write this book.  It happened by accident when I needed a couple of characters to fill holes in the earlier books in the series.  Some accidents are meant to happen.                                                                 


Katharine Cavanaugh, the Countess of Stirling, has always lived according to the expectations of her heritage.  American mercenary Matthew Thatcher has spent his life running away from every expectation he has for himself.  But when their latest mission from the British War Office goes wrong, trapping them behind enemy lines, they must decide if they dare to realize the greatest expectation of all: the expectation of love.                                                                          To Buy A COUNTESS MOST DARING go to:
Barnes & Noble:
All Romance eBooks:

You can find Jessie on these links:

Thanks for checking out Jessie and her secrets. If you have any comments or questions, Jessie will be around to answer them today.

And don’t forget to check back next Thursday to find out even more author secrets about their book. 

Monday, May 26, 2014

Help - I Need a Title

Okay, I have a book that I'm proof reading right now.
I need a cover - but before that, I need a title. I had a working one.
I call it The Target. But honestly, there are so many books called Target out there and another one of my published ones is called TARGETED.
So--The Target is out.

Now I have to come up with something else.
If anyone out there has any suggestions I'd love to hear them.

The book is a dark, romantic suspense that takes place predominately in Reno and involves the Washoe Sheriff's office and the Reno PD.

It's about chat rooms for teens. I had a lot of help from someone who works the teen chat rooms in Reno and has about 12 different personas in various chat rooms. (She was amazing).

The plot is about a serial killer who works the chat rooms looking for blonde, fourteen year old teenage girls.  When he finds one that appears to fit his profile he develops a relationship with her, pretending to be a sixteen/seventeen year old boy. He convinces her to come and meet him and chooses a location where the girl can travel by bus and back home in a day.
When she meets him, and he’s an older man, he tells her he’s a friend of her online boyfriend and he’s taking her to meet him.
At a motel he rapes and kills her and then moves on to another chat room looking for another girl.

The detective and the sheriff are working together (reluctantly) to find the killer before he kills another girl.

I`ve come up with these titles so far:
Meet Me and Die
Don`t Go
Meet Him and Die
Do You Know Where Your Daughter is?

Do you like any of them? Which one? Other suggestions? Any help greatly appreciated.

Friday, May 23, 2014


What is the most inspiring, romantic, or dangerous setting you ever come across while reading or imagined while writing? Thanks, Rhobin, for another thought provoking topic.

This one had me thinking. First I decided the setting is influenced by the story. A Cruise to Remember, one of my published books takes place on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. This could be a very romantic setting, but my book is about a woman with amnesia, jewel thieves and attempted murder.  I think the Caribbean cruise becomes more of a dangerous setting than a romantic one.

I believe that you can take any setting, Paris in the spring for example, and make it romantic, dangerous or inspiring, depending on your characters, the plot and your writer.

It’s dark, no lights, a candle flickers, the wind rattles at the window--romantic or dangerous? I think it could be either. Trying to pick one book is difficult because each scene could have a different setting. Lisa Gardner’s The Third Victim. The scene at the beginning of a school shooting is dangerous and horrifying and pulls you right into the story.
JD Robb in her books about Eve Dallas and her ongoing romance with Roarke is always romantic. I love Roarke, the bad boy image, his money, their castle-like home and the emotion between them, I always find romantic.

Inspirational is harder for me, but maybe Envy by Sandra Brown as Maris works through her life and survives. Part of the setting is on an eerie plantation with a man in a wheelchair.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic.

I’m also really looking forward to what the other authors in our group blog have to say and the books they reference. Hope you are to and you’ll check them all out. Ginger Simpson is next at

And here’s a list of all the others you don’t want to miss:

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

5 Secrets (What No One Knows About My Book)

Our guest author today is Heidi M.Thomas, who is going to share some tidbits about the writing of her book that no one knows--until today.

Heidi M. Thomas grew up on a working ranch in eastern Montana. She had parents who taught her a love of books and a grandmother who rode bucking stock in rodeos. Describing herself as “born with ink in her veins,” Heidi followed her dream of writing with a journalism degree from the University of Montana and later turned to her first love, fiction, to write her grandmother’s story.

Heidi’s first novel, Cowgirl Dreams, has won an EPIC Award and the USA Book News Best Book Finalist award. Follow the Dream, a WILLA Award winner, is her second book, and Dare to Dream is the third in the series about strong, independent Montana women.

Five Secrets About ‘Dream’ Series
1.Not too many of us can say we had a grandmother who competed on bucking stock in rodeos, but I can. Olive May “Tootsie” Bailey grew up riding alongside four brothers, naturally imitating what they did. Many women in the early 1900s did the same work as their fathers, brothers or husbands out of necessity. When the men got together for an impromptu contest to see who could rope the best or stay on the back of a bucking steer, bull or bronc the longest, some women said, “I can do that too.” My great aunts did not enjoy riding, but my grandmother was the tomboy in the family. I knew she loved riding more than anything else in the world, and we were able to spend time together on horseback.

2.In 1911 my great-grandparents, Charles and Ada Bailey, moved to Montana from Coeur d’Alene Idaho, after an expansion of the Homestead Act in 1909. They homesteaded about fifteen miles north of Cut Bank. That land is now owned by a Hutterite Colony (a religious group similar to the Amish or Mennonites).

3.My grandparents’ first home when they were married was a leased property between Cut Bank and Sunburst. When I began researching my first book, I went looking for that ranch. The only thing I know was that it was “the old Davis place under the rims.” After running down a number of leads, I finally located it, and to my delight, found the house still standing, although it was being used as a cattle shelter.

4.Although I never considered myself a “cowgirl,” I grew up on a ranch and rode my strawberry roan to help my dad gather cattle for branding, doctoring or shipping in the fall. I was never “horse crazy,” probably because it was part of the ranch chores I was required to do, but I did enjoy riding. I never aspired to rodeo, however, preferring not to try to ride an animal that was going to buck me off. I consider myself an “urban cowgirl,” now because as Dale Evans said, “Cowgirl is a state of mind.”

5.I share a common thread with my grandmother, which made it somewhat easier to write about the 1920s through the 1940s in my series. My parents moved onto a ranch and into a homestead house near Sand Springs, Montana in 1952. We had no electricity until I was six years old, no indoor bathroom until I was in high school, and our nearest neighbor was five miles away. We raised our own grass-fed beef, had a vegetable garden, and I started first grade in a one-room country school with four students total. I lived in a dormitory during the week to attend high school in the only town in the county, which was 35 miles away, without bus service.

Blurb from Dare to Dream:

Dare to Dream is the third novel in the “Dream” trilogy. Montana cowgirl Nettie Brady Moser has overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles on the journey toward her dream of being a professional rodeo rider. In the 1920s she struggled against her family’s expectations and social prejudice against rodeo cowgirls. During the Great Depression, marrying Jake Moser and then raising their son took priority over rodeos. And then she was devastated by the death of her friend and mentor in a rodeo accident.
In the spring of 1941, Nettie Moser, now age 36, is regaining her heart and spirit, and she is determined to ride again at an event in Cheyenne, Wyoming. To her dismay, the male-dominated Rodeo Association of America enforces its rule barring women from riding rough stock and denies her the chance to ride. Her fury at the discrimination can’t change things for women—yet.

Based on the life of the author’s grandmother, who rode rough stock in Montana in the 1920s, this sweeping rodeo saga parallels the evolution of women’s rodeo from the golden years of the 1920s, producing many world champion riders, and shows its decline, beginning in the 1930s and ending with World War II in 1941.

To Buy Dare to Dream go to:!order-books/c71

You can find Heidi at:
My website:
My blog:
Thanks for checking out Heidi and her secrets. If you have any comments or questions, Heidi will be around to answer them today.
And don’t forget to check back next Thursday to find out even more author secrets about their book. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Two Reviews

Finally - I managed to read a couple of books and write reviews. I’m a few weeks late, but life and I have been busy. First I need to preface these reviews. I stepped out of my familiar zone and expand my horizons. The first book is a futuristic paranormal, which I don’t usually read and the second one is a True Crime, which I have never read book. So this has been interesting and yes, I would read more in those genres.

THE BREDE CHRONICLES Book 1 by P. I. Barrington.

This book is set in the future, partly on Earth and also on several other planets. The author does an excellent job creating another world, with vivid description detail. Earth destroyed itself by greedy government and politicians who shamelessly sold out for their own financial benefit, to the detriment of their own citizens. 

Brede is a citizen from Amphidia. Amphidians are part human and part animal. As the hero he is predominantly Amphibian, which means he doesn’t have the morals and ethics, or the emotions of his human side. He enjoys the pain of others, enjoys hurting them and watching their pain, either physical or emotional. And he enjoys killing. He has been hired by more than one person to find the Vessel of Beket-Re. An ancient article no one really knows much about.

The heroine is Electra, a human, abandoned as a child by her parents, left to drag herself up, feed and clothe herself. She tags along after Brede, hoping to win his approval.

The new world of Earth and the other planets is extremely violent. There are many killed in violent and possibly an upsetting manner. Even if not killed, people are also maimed and seriously hurt and injured.  Amphidia and Amphidians are extremely violent people with little or no emotion about the murders and pain they commit. If you enjoy a lot of violence and explicit murders, this might be the book for you. It will be available in June. Check Amazon.


This book is a true crime story. I found it interesting from a research point.  A murder of two young people, shortly before Halloween, in the cornfield of a small industrial Ohio town, occurred in 1982. The book covers a series of grisly, mysterious, and baffling scenarios that horrified the nation and were dubbed “the crime of the century” in that small town.

It takes you through the crime, and how the investigation was conducted by the police and those who were involved in trying to solve the murder and who murdered the young people. Were mistakes made?  Multiple suspects are brought forward. Interviews showed conflicting statements. The media frenzy helped cloud the investigation. It was almost a year before an arrest was made.

The book then covers the trial.

It was twenty-five years later that the murder was finally solved.

The research to write this book is extensive and very well done. It's factual and gives you the feeling of being there and observing the investigation. If you read True Crime, appreciate accurate and extensive research, or want to try a different genre about a real murder, this might be a story you’re interested in.

Saturday, May 17, 2014


Tomorrow, Sunday, May 18th, I'm taking part in my first Facebook party, from 5 PM - 11 PM EST. (That's 2 PM - 8 PM Pacific time). I'm a virgin at Facebook parties. I've never done this before.

The Awesome Dynamic Duo Mary Marvella and M J Flournoy are planning a Romance Caper! They've promised to be gentle with me. They'll be there with guests, authors, and prizes! They'll be giving away books! They' will have a different guest every half hour.
I'll be there from 7:30 - 8:00 PM EST. (That's 4:30 - 5:00 PM - my time :)) I'll be talking about my books, my research and answering questions. I'd love to have you pop buy and say "hi'. I'm giving away a print copy of one of my books. Drop by anytime during the party and find all about a bunch of great authors.
I hope to see some of you there. Check it out at

Also, don't forget about author, Brenda Novak’s Annual Online Auction for Diabetes Research. Brenda started the auction 10 years ago to help raise money for Juvenile Diabetes Research. Over the ten years she’s raised over two million dollars for diabetes research. The Auction goes for the month of May.      Authors, publishers, agents, writers, friends and others contribute awesome gifts for the auction. You can get condos for vacation, Coach purses, jewelry, critiques from authors and editors, meet authors and agents for breakfast and lunches, and so much more. There are special daily deals and raffles.                 I contribute a Canadian basket and I’d love to have people bid on it. I cover the postage to mail it to whoever wins. So please, at least check out the site and some of the many items listed.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

5 SECRETS (What No One Knows About My Book)

Our guest author today is Leslie Sartor, who is going to share some tidbits about the writing of her book that no one knows--until today.

Multipublished and Best Selling Author L.A. Sartor began telling stories around the age of four  when her mother, at L.A.'s insistence, wrote them down and L.A. illustrated them.  As an adult she writes suspense and action adventure novels with a dash of romance, and screenplays—she's had a contracted adaptation!  She lives in Colorado with her husband whom she met on a blind date.  L.A. loves to travel and thinks life is an adventure and we should  embrace the journey.  She has a blog: She is also one of the Five Scribes at She has two new books releasing in 2014. Please contact her at using the "contact me" page and sign up for her newsletter. All sorts of news and promotions comes out generally near the release of a new book, or promotion.
Five Secrets About Stone of Heaven
1) Stone Of Heaven (SOH) was first an award winning script, and Rhoades Rader's (Heavy Duty Entertainment) assistant--a woman--loved the story and the fact the adventurer was a woman, a twin no less.  She insisted Rhoades read it, but alas, nothing more came from that.  Maybe he'll take another look now that it's from a Best Selling Author…HEY RHOADES!!!!
2) The story was first going to be set in China, and finish in the Yucatan, but since it was a script, the cost of locations especially from an unknown writer,  was way high, and  made me rethink that. So I set in all in Mexico.  And while Tori and Reid traverse the country, most of the shooting could be done in one spot.  The magic of film.
3) When I decided to write the book, I realized all my characters had to have an internal narrative, and I was stuck for months.  I had to get out of my screenwriting mode and get into writing a novel.  That was amazingly hard.  And then the research for setting.  In screenwriting, you set a place, but add few details, don't have room for it. Completely the opposite in a book.
4) Why twins in the story?  Honestly? You're the first to know this!!  Because I thought it would add to the pitch worthiness of the script for an actress to play both parts.  A recluse and an adventure junkie.  Fun, opposite type roles.
5) VIKING GOLD, Book Two in the Carswell Adventure Series was going to be set in  Bath England, but Reid's last comment in Stone of Heaven kept calling me, so Tori's twin, Abby, and Hermann, (you meet both in SOH) are the central characters in Viking Gold.  Along with Reid, Tori and Alfred.  This secret will be released in August J Go to to sign up for my newsletter and find out the moment it's available.

For the Adventurer and the Romantic in all of us.
Book One of the Carswell Adventure Series  
The Recluse …Tori Carswell treasures her solitude and simple life.  Her identical twin, Abby Carswell, is the polar opposite, seeking increasingly risky adventures.  Now Abby has put herself in mortal danger, captive of an ancient Mayan cult.  Her only hope?  Woefully under-prepared Tori.
And the Treasure Hunter …Reid Hunter, good-natured and currently broke, aims to beat his ex-partner Abby to the fabled blue jade known as the Stone of Heaven.  But when reclusive, aero-phobic Tori overcomes her fear of flying and tracks her sister to a well guarded tomb deep in the Yucatan rainforest, he realizes Abby is in serious trouble.
Can Opposites Accomplish the Impossible?
Abby no longer trusts Reid. Can Tori risk doing so now, and join forces with him to save her sister?  Or will Reid put riches before life and love?

To buy Stone of Heaven go to:
Amazon Paperback:
Barnes and Noble:

You can find Leslie at:
Facebook Profile:
Facebook Author:
Twitter site:  

Thanks for checking out Leslie and her secrets. If you have any comments or questions, Leslie will be around to answer them today.

And don’t forget to check back next Thursday to find out even more author secrets about their book. 


Monday, May 12, 2014


I am researching the state of Montana and the Blackfoot tribe for the third book in my Hawkins ranch series.

TARGETED is about the third son who is adopted. He is from the Blackfeet tribe. And no I’m not mixing up Blackfoot and Blackfeet. Research shows that in Canada they are known as the Blackfoot tribe, but when they cross over into the United States they become the Blackfeet.
I am doing most of my research online using Google search. I was also in the Fort Calgary museum ten days ago and they have a nice section with information about the Blackfoot tribe. I’d like to find someone from the Blackfoot tribe so I could make sure my research is accurate.

I also wanted a small town in Montana and had to figure out the area - close to the southern border, close to airports, an hour or so drive to a major hospital and still a little remote. I figured out the area and placed a fictional town, Duster, Montana, there. I added hotels, stores, police station, diners and restaurants and other places to make a small town. Hopefully it works.

I’m using the information for TARGETED but I’m also using it for my next series. I’ve had Canadian readers, and writers, say they’d like to read romantic suspense set in a Canadian setting – so I’m planning a series about a retired (not by choice – replace by a younger male) female crime reporter in Calgary, Alberta, with a Blackfoot mother. So my research will serve for several books.

How do you research? I’d love to hear from you.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

5 SECRETS (What No One Knows About My Book)

Our guest author today is Gemma Juliana, who is going to share some tidbits about the writing of her book that no one knows--until today.
GEMMA JULIANA is a multi-published author who lives in an enchanted cottage in north Texas with her handsome hero, brave teen son and a comical dog who is really a human in disguise. She loves making new friends and hearing from readers. Exotic coffee and chocolate fuel her creativity. She writes romance, mystery and suspense with a splash of the paranormal. You’ll find alpha heroes in the Sheikhs of the Golden Triangle series and modern heroes in To Kiss A Leprechaun and Autumn Masquerade. More books coming soon.

Five Secrets about The Sheikhs of the Golden Triangle Series
1. Oonagh (The Amulet), the Celtic witch, created the amulet that has protected Zahiria for centuries. She’s alive… perhaps she’s reincarnated, or an immortal. Who is she now? Hmmm…
2. Sheikhs Adnan (The Sheikh’s Spy) and Rick (The Sheikh’s Crowning) know there’s oil in the Golden Triangle. What they don’t know yet is that at the heart of the kingdoms is a pocket of very special gold like none found anywhere on the planet.
3. If you thought the members of the Burindi royal family are evil humans you are only half right. They descend from a mating that took place long ago between a human and a vampire. Makes you wonder about their slave trade business that flows through their fortified castle…
4. “A terrible price was paid in the making of the amulet, and it must be put right before peace can take root in the kingdoms.” Let’s just say it has something to do with what a sly Celtic witch did to a smitten djinn. No, I really can’t say more!
5. Christmas Spirits takes place at Winterthorne Castle, in Ireland. The castle holds a secret few know about nowadays. Queen Anna, who was murdered long ago, knew the secret. Oonagh, the Celtic witch, is from her bloodline. I based this castle estate on an actual estate where I spent much time when I was young. I also knew a woman in Ireland who inspired Oonagh the Celtic witch, although mine is a fictitious character.
Blurb from The Sheikhs of the Golden Triangle series
The Sheikh’s Spy is the story of Sheikh Adnan of Zahiria and Olympia Green, the courageous woman who risked her life to save his.When Olympia Green becomes collateral against her brother’s gambling debt, she is whisked away by a dark, brooding sheikh and locked up in the women’s quarters of his desert fortress. Being a sex toy in a wealthy sheikh’s pleasure chest does not suit her.

When she overhears a plot to assassinate a neighboring sheikh, she decides to take a gamble of her own, and escape from her prison in order to warn him.

When an unknown foreign woman shows up in his palace in the middle of the night, Sheikh Adnan distrusts her motives. Once he learns she was kidnapped and has risked her life in order to save his, he will stop at nothing to keep her by his side.
The stakes are already high. When Adnan learns that the neighboring kingdoms are involved in illegal business dealings that will shake the region, he sets about bringing them to justice. So far, the famous amulet has protected Zahiria. Will it continue to do so?
To Buy The Sheikhs of the Golden Triangle Series go to

You can find Gemma on her website at
On Twitter and on Facebook

Thanks for checking out Gemma and her secrets. If you have any comments or questions, Gemma will be around to answer them today.
And don’t forget to check back next Thursday to find out even more author secrets about their book.