THURSDAY THREADS welcomes Cerian Herbert!


The Title of the book you’re promoting. GOING GOING GONE

Its Genre CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE

Heat Level FAIRLY STEAMY

Buy Link http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00E00RUW2

Excerpt and Blurb
EXCERPT:

“That was a pretty generous bid you made,” Eli said.

His gaze stayed locked with hers, a trait she approved of. Most of the men in her acquaintance tended to have wandering eyes. It was difficult to have an intelligent conversation with a man who was more interested in her cup size.

“It’s for a good cause. Besides, I have plans for you. I’ll get my money’s worth.”

Eli chuckled and shifted his feet. “What kind of plans? One thousand dollars is a lot of dinners.”

With a shake of her head, Nell smirked. “Actually, that’s not what I had in mind. You look like a strong guy and a good worker.” She reached out and touched the tip of her finger to his bicep. Just as she thought, hard muscles rippled beneath the dark blue fabric of his dress shirt. Flirting with him was good. She’d probably get more out of him if she came on to him.

Nell brushed away the wicked little thought and contained the smile pulling at her lips. “The truth of the matter is, Gwen needs help with her mom’s house before it can go on the market. You look like you’re good with a hammer and paintbrush.”

“That’s it?” Eli looked down at her fingers, which traced a fold in the fabric of his shirt. “You don’t want a home cooked meal?” He sounded rather relieved. “You know what kind of auction this is, don’t you?”

“Honey, I’m not looking for a date.” Nell dragged her gaze up and down his body.
“Though if I were, I’d definitely consider you. But I don’t plan on being in town too long.”

“My loss.”

The way his dark eyes seemed to meld with hers heated her whole body up. He was good-looking, but she wasn’t prepared for the extent of the attraction she felt. Everyone else in the crowded gym faded away into an inconsequential, gray fog.

Get back in the driver’s seat, Nell, she thought.

BLURB: When Nell Moreno returns to her small hometown after a lengthy absence, she’s not too surprised no one recognizes her, she’s certainly not the overweight teenager she used to be. While hiding her true identity, Nell “wins” hunky fireman, Elijah Knight, at a charity auction and she’s determined to give the one-time bully a little payback for the misery he caused her when they were teens. However, over the next few weeks she discovers he’s changed a lot too and as they fall in love, Nell is left with the dilemma of how to admit she’s lied to him about who she really is.

Media Links (Website, Twitter, FB, etc)

http://www.cerianhebert.com
https://www.facebook.com/Ceriansbooks
https://twitter.com/CerianHebert

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I Have An Addiction


I have a particular fondness for Victorian Style homes (English cottages will also do nicely). Alas, I live on a relatively new tract home, with no prospects of buying that old Victorian downtown. Or that sweet bungalow. Or really, move at all.

The plus side of the tract home? I am not freaking out about fixing the walls. And yes, I have to fix the walls. The dog ate them.

In any case, here’s some pictures of a few of my favorites… Because yes, I do take pictures of houses. And check it. You also get a view of the side mirror of my sweet ride. Because, while I am many things, I really am a pretty terrible photographer.

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A Totally True and Completely Accurate Story


Sorry for the last post, where I was a grumpy gus. I’m over myself now.

So, to spare you from my maudlin-ness (I’m pretty certain this is NOT a word, but that’s okay. I’m alright making up words), I will now tell you a totally true and completely accurate story about my children.

Actually people, what’s really sad is that I am not making any of this up.

Back several years ago, we took our kids to get baptized at the Lutheran Church we were attending. At the time, Monkey was having these monster fits–she’d scream her head off like a crazy person for hours. Hours. And no, that’s not poetic license. I start shaking and rocking just remembering it.

So anyway, there we are, sitting in church, waiting to go up to the baptismal font. it was summer time, and the sky was dark with a rather freakish summer storm, and it was so stinking hot outside that you could see the heat rising off the asphalt just outside the door. Monkey was throwing a fit about something; I don’t even remember what. There she was, in her white, eyelet lace dress, throwing herself on the floor and shrieking like a banshee. No, really. I was surprised that the windows didn’t shatter.

Suddenly, there was a loud crack. The power went off. The air conditioner died. Monkey abruptly stopped wailing to look around. And no, she wasn’t upset. A couple of old ladies screamed, by my two-year-old? She was totally fine with it, like, “Oh, what was that?”

I turned to M. “Did the church just get struck by lightning?”

M said, “I don’t know, but she stopped screaming,” as if that was the important thing. Because I was thinking, Of course. Why wouldn’t lightning strike the church now? Of course.

Chewey took that moment to begin wailing in my arms. M was the one who had been wrangling the slippery eel that was Monkey. Seriously, who knew a little kid could be so slippery? When Monk was little, it was like wrangling an octopus, all arms and legs and no bones, and I swear she had more than four limbs. In fact, I’m pretty certain she looked a bit like this:

images

 

M and I exchanged a look. You know, the parent look. The one that says, “I’m so sorry we’re in this together, but hey, we’re in this together!”

Then he said, “My mother always said my child would be the antichrist. Hi five.”

We high-fived, because if you can’t laugh at it, it will break you. (And in this case, “it” can mean anything. Mother-in-law issues? Yup, “it” can be that. Trouble with a boss? Yes, “it” can be that, too. Unexpected STDs… Uh, no. Sorry, you’re on your own there)

“If this is a sign, one of them will spontaneously combust.” I looked down at my shirt, and my flailing son, who was so upset that he dribbled snot all down the front of my blouse. “I like this shirt. Putting out flames will ruin it, if Chewey doesn’t do it first.”

M laughed, like he always does when I think I’m being funny.

I am happy to report that the rest of the baptism went without incident. Sure, Monkey asked for cake through the whole thing (hey, she was two, and we bribe when we have to), but that worked out. She got her cake without throwing another fit. And Chewey finally stopped screaming when the lady holding him accidentally clocked him on the head walking through a door, so there is that.

So the next time you look at your little bundles of joy, just remember, it could be worse. Lightning could strike the church.

Thursday Threads Welcomes Tina Susedik to The Bodice


Riding for Love
Romantic Mystery
Sensuous

Bio: As a child, Tina always had stories floating around in her head, but had no idea those stories could be put down in book form. One day her brother (yes, her brother) introduced her to Kathleen Woodiwiss’ The Flame and the Flower. Tina was hooked and a love of reading and eventually writing romance began. She is also a non-fiction writer with six history books in print.

Tina has been married for over forty years and lives in Wisconsin. After careers in accounting and teaching (not necessarily at the same time), she found her career in writing is what fulfills her the most. When not writing, she loves camping, hiking, photography, reading and playing with her five grandchildren.

She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Wisconsin Romance Writers of America.

Blurb: Eve Dayton, owner of a riding ranch, rose above her childhood past and overcame the emotional damage her boyfriend caused when he married another woman. When someone starts sabotaging her ranch, Eve is desperate to find the culprit before she loses everything. Is it a coincidence or is the return of Denton Johanson tied to the mystery?

Divorced Denton Johanson returns to his hometown to help convict the embezzling controller of the family business. When he runs into Eve, he realizes his feelings for her are still strong enough to try and win her back. His fear of horses won’t get in the way of his goal and decides the only way to be near her is to take riding lessons from her. Can he convince her that his love is real and he is not behind the mystery surrounding the ranch?

Excerpt:

“Darn. I’m late.” Eve grabbed her mug of coffee and the clipboard with her notes for the day. “I’m never late. Ever. This is what happens when you let a man get under your skin.” She jogged across the driveway to the barn. The clients weren’t due for another half an hour, but she wanted to meet with Tom early to go over her notes once more to make sure the horses matched the riders.

Her steps slowed as she entered the barn. Tom was talking to one of the employees at the other end of the barn. Since he didn’t immediately notice her, she took her time walking through the building, making sure the tack was all in place according to horse, helmets and riding sticks hung in order of size, horses back in their stalls from the field, and no stray horse droppings or straw littered the barn floor.

As she passed the row of licenses showing their employees were qualified as riding instructors, and she and Tom owners, he turned and waved her over.

“So how did your evening go last night, sweetheart? You danced quite a bit with Denton.”

“Yeah.” She batted her eyes at her friend. “You didn’t have anything to do with it would you, honeybunch?”

Tom laughed, threw an arm around her shoulders, and gave her a hug. “Ah, busted.” He kissed her forehead. “He’s not so bad, you know, Eve. He’s made some mistakes, and I believe he sincerely regrets them. But if he does anything to hurt you again, he’ll find himself lying in a pile of manure, face first.”

Eve grimaced at the image. “Well, I hate to say you’re right, but I did have a good time. I forgot how easy it is to talk to him. Besides, he can’t hurt me if I don’t let him.” She slid the clipboard from under her arm and started flipping through pages. “That doesn’t mean I’m still not mad at him. It’s going to take more than a few dances to get me into his good graces.”

“Give him a run for his money?”

“Yeah,” she muttered, glancing at her watch. “Now, let’s compare notes before our subjects arrive.”

For the next few minutes they walked companionably through the barn looking at stock, comparing horse sizes, and temperaments to clients. The stable of twenty-five horses ranged from duns to piebalds to grays and Appaloosas and included a few ponies for younger riders. Eve loved them all.

“I’ll take the slowest, laziest one with the shortest legs,” Denton said, interrupting Eve and Tom’s decision to pasture a smaller horse needing to be re-shod.

Eve nearly dropped the clipboard at the sound of Denton’s deep voice as she locked the stall door and tacked a note to the front for her staff. Keeping her back to him, she didn’t hide a smile at his nervous tone. By the time she faced him, the smile disappeared, but not the heat that had risen to her face.

“Mornin’, Dent,” Tom said, stepping over to the next stall. “I think old Della here will do fine for you.” He ran a hand down the bay’s forelock, over the blaze markings to her nose and slipped a sugar cube into her mouth. “Eve’s helped so many people learn to ride she’d teach me a few things, and I taught her to ride.”

Denton let out a breath of air and took a few steps closer to the stall. “Good to know.”

“Don’t be misled, Dent,” Eve said, following Tom’s hands down the horse’s face. “Della may be getting on in years, but she’s a horse and horses can pull a few tricks on the unwary.” Denton’s Adam’s apple slipped up and down as he swallowed a gulp. She pressed the clipboard to her chest. “Don’t worry, since I’ll be training you, I won’t let anything happen.”

“To me or the horse?” he asked.

“Good question,” Eve answered over her shoulder as she sauntered away from the men.

***

Denton raked his fingers through his hair and suppressed a shudder.

“Scared you, didn’t she?”

“And you’re enjoying it, aren’t you?”

“Don’t worry, boy. She’s never let a customer get hurt. Yet.”

Denton breathed a sigh of relief. He wouldn’t get hurt, not physically, anyway, he thought. His emotions were another matter. His heart tripped a little faster as he watched her walk through the barn.

The rest of the group began entering the building. Amazing how, in such a short time, a person learned to recognize someone, even by their black silhouette against the bright sun-lit entrance to the barn. The unmistakable buxom figure of Jackie was outlined in the door.

His breath left him and he quickly searched for a place to hide. After her seduction attempts at the dance, she was the last person he wanted to encounter. He still felt her body pressed against his, his arm muscles even a little sore from trying to stop her from performing the vertical bedroom tango publicly. The next woman to use his body in any way would be Eve, whether she knew it or not.

So desperate to be out of Jackie’s sight, he contemplated leaping over the gate into his horse’s stall and hiding behind her rump, then grabbing a shovel to start mucking out manure or take a hoof pick and clean out her hoofs. Before he could consider the wisdom of doing any of those things, Jackie spotted him.

He groaned. Everyone gathering at the end of the barn turned as she shrilled out his name. He moved toward her. If he moved fast enough, he’d get to the others and mingle, be able to hide among his compatriots, then shove her off on some other, more willing, male in the group.

http://www.amazon.com/Riding-for-Love-ebook/dp/B00CLJD31Q
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/riding-for-love-tina-susedik/1119333999?ean=9781619354289
http://tinasusedik.wordpress.com./
Twitter: @tinasusedik

Website: TinaSusedik.com

Facebook: Tina Susedik, Author

Soul Mate Publishing: http://www.soulmatepublishing.com/riding-for-love/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17908316-riding-for-love

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Romance Weekly:


It’s time for Romance Writers’ Weekly! This week’s questions are from Jo Richardson. Don’t know her? Go check her out here.

  1. How often do you write?

Short answer: As often as I can.

Long answer: Depends on your definition of writing. Rarely a day goes by that I don’t write something. But it might be reports for work, it might be papers for school, or it might be fiction. It depends. If we’re talking only fiction, I shoot for every day, but I’ve been known to take time off from it, too. Sometimes, my fiction gets put on the back burner for a little while while I sort out my life

2. Do you think it’s important to your craft to write as much as you can, and as often as you can?

Yes, with the caveat that everyone has the right to a break. If you’re burning out, recharging your batteries might be a good thing. Also, I sometimes think that people who try to put out vast quantities of writing often suffer from what I’ve called “first draft syndrome.” If quality is suffering because the goal is quantity, I don’t see how that will improve your skills as a writer.

Writing, like most things, is about balance. There must be a balance between quality and quantity. It’s important to write books, but it’s also important that those books are well-written and thoroughly researched. Otherwise, books go to print that aren’t ready. And I think it’s more important to put out a quality product than to be fast and put out a bunch of them.

Then again, I’m a relatively slow writer (it can take me three months to two years to finish a manuscript, and I’m pretty thrilled with myself if I complete a full manuscript and a novella per year). So you can take my issues with quantity  with a grain of salt. I’m not a “let’s get this mother cranked out so I can get started on the next one” kind of author. I want to love my books, and love takes time.

3. What is your opinion on the saying “if you don’t write every day, you’re not a writer”?

Short answer: I think it’s bullshit.

Long answer: I’m a speech pathologist every day of my life. But I don’t practice every single day. I take days off. When I got sick a couple of years ago, I took six weeks off from work. It didn’t make me less of a speech pathologist. I didn’t somehow misplace my degree, experience and credentials during surgery. And, weird, when I came back to work, I remembered how to do my job.

I’m also a writer every day of my life. If I take a day off, I’m still a writer. Dedication to craft can take many forms. I recognize when I’m burning out–and if I’m burning out, I’m not producing quality material.

Sometimes real life infringes on all aspects of one’s professional life. Sometimes, you’ll need a break from writing, sometimes you’ll need a break from the day job, and sometimes, you’ll need a break from your kids. It’s okay to take a break. It’s okay to recognize burn out and do something about it.

I don’t believe that there is one way to be successful, and only one road to publication. I’m not that author who feels that only  Big Six pubbed books are work while; I don’t think only literary fiction is worthwhile. I think a “real” writer is one who takes her craft seriously, who actively tries to improve, and who is actively pursuing publication (but that doesn’t mean that she has to be querying at this very moment; it means that the intent to query is there as a serious goal).

Well, that’s it for me. Why not see what Mishka Jenkins has to say?

Thursday Threads Welcomes Wareeze Woodson!


Thursday Threads for An Enduring Love

Bio for Wareeze Woodson

I am a native of Texas and still live in this great state. I married my high school sweetheart, years and years ago. We raised four children and have eight grandchildren, and grandchildren are Grand. At the moment, all my children and my grandchildren live within seventy miles of our home, lots of visits. My husband and I still love each other after all these years the stuff romance is made of, Happy Ever After!

 

 

http://buff.ly/1qqyBSe is the buy link for An Enduring Love (Regency romance filled with suspense) Heat level of 3, or so I’ve been told.

 

Blurb for An Enduring Love

 

Born and raised in Latvia, Rebecca Balodis marries Rhys Sudduth, an English diplomat. Shortly thereafter, he is summoned home to attend his father’s death-bed. Rebecca cannot accompany him at the time and becomes trapped in the turmoil plaguing her country. He is informed she died in the upheaval.

Nearly four years later, she escapes and arrives in London with their son in tow. Arriving in the middle of his sister’s ball is very awkward, especially since Rhys plans to announce his betrothal to a young debutante later in the evening.

Trouble, tangled in suspense and danger, follow her from Latvia. Can this pair ever find or even recognize an enduring love? Is it worth keeping?

website –  http://www.wareezewoodson.com/

face book –  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wareeze-Woodson/523727757689755

twitter –  twitter.com@wareeze

face book – https://www.goodreads.com/wareeze

Excerpt 1

The gangplank of the Dragon’s Stirr had been lowered ready for Latvian passengers to board. The creak of the ropes tying the vessel to the dock rasped Rebecca’s nerves, reminding her that soon Rhys would sail back to England without her. Devastated by the thought of such a loss and at such a time, she swallowed hard. How can I bare to let him leave me behind?

Standing on the dock in the mid-day sun, she tried to hold back her sobs and for a moment, she feared her knees might give way beneath her. She clinched her jaw, trying to hold steady and caught the lapels of Rhys’s finely tailored jacket with trembling fingers. A rising ocean breeze stirred his dark hair and swirled her skirts about her ankles as he placed his hand over hers.

When Rebecca gazed into Rhys’ deep blue eyes, Gorgi Weister’s words intruded. Sudduth is almost believable when he claims undying devotion. I admire his talent. Her chest burned with apprehension and she gulped a deep breath. What if Weister is correct? Does Rhys wish to abandon me as Weister implied?  

Weister’s sly innuendoes and the sound of his mocking laughter circled in her mind, but she pushed such negative views aside. Guilt for allowing a moment of doubt to fester filled her with shame, but that too, she brushed aside. Ne! I refuse to believe Rhys would desert me. Although we have only been married a few months his love is strong and will endure forever, as will mine. Nevertheless, doubt crawled into her head, impossible to completely deny. Still, why would a government official such as Gorgi Weister attempt to stir trouble with lies? It made no sense!

 

 

Excerpt 2

A liveried butler, stern of countenance and standing stiffly erect opened the door. “Your invitation, Ma’am.”

Rebecca trembled, but forced out, “Surely, I don’t need an invitation. Please inform Lord Rhys that his wife is here.”

Astonishment flashed across the butler’s face before he bowed his head and nodded for her to follow him. Sonja was seated in the hall while he led Rebecca to a small parlor papered with stripes of ivory and cream. The entire room seemed a little intimidating, with an elaborate sofa covered with gold brocade sitting before a wide window. Chairs were shattered about the room as well, but the beauty of the room did little to sooth her nerves. She glanced at the low table in front of the sofa then let her gaze shift to the fireplace, glowing with warmth. The softly burning coals added soothing comfort to the room and with that, her whole body relaxed.

After the butler exited, Rebecca quickly knelt down to straighten Johnnie’s apparel. “We want to look our best mans maz cilveku, my little man. You must learn English better now we are home. They are not expecting us, but no matter. Your father will love you.”

The door opened and Rhys stood on the threshold with a scowl of impatience on his face, speaking to the butler over his shoulder. “Some strumpet masquerading as my deceased wife. Be damned. You’re positive she said, my wife. Not a long lost relative wanting to sponge…?”

Rebecca jumped to her feet, took Johnnie by the hand and pasted a trembling smile on her lips. “Rhys.”

 

 

An Added Bonus Feature!

Letters discovered in the belongings of the villain. These letters are not revealed in the book but are held in my heart and give insight to the story. A tidbit solely for you. Enjoy.

Wareeze Woodson

 

 

The Year of Our Lord 1813

My Dearest Husband,

I write with my heart filled with sorrow. My beloved mother has passed on to join my father in Heaven. I can only be happy for her although sadness weighs me down. I am now acquainted with deep sadness and how you must mourn for your father. Grief makes it hard to write, but you deserve to know why I am delayed in departing this land.

At the moment, I am trapped in Latvia due to the up-rising in my country. I do not know how long it may be before I am allowed to travel to England to join you. There is a guard placed outside my gate to prevent my departure at present, but I will travel to Rica at the first opportunity and board a ship to London. Perhaps all will settle quickly. I can only pray it shall be so.

I cannot wait to be in your arms again, to kiss your dear face and gaze into your eyes once more. With words, you painted a lovely picture of your home in England and of your relatives. The thought of meeting your family holds much pleasure for me, especially since I am now alone.

Take care, My Love. I shall write to let you know as the hour of my departure grows closer. Keep safe and know you have my enduring love.

Yours Always,

Rebecca Sudduth

 

 

Another letter confiscated by the villain.

The Year of Our Lord 1814

My Dearest Husband,

I have not received any word from you since you sailed away from Latvia. I hope you are well. I must write quickly in order to send this to you. There is still a guard at my gate.

With your connection in the government, perhaps you can return and help me travel to England. There will be one added person in need of your assistance, our son. If you cannot come at once, please write. I am most anxious to hear from you.

Never forget my enduring love. Anxiously waiting.

Yours Always,

Rebecca Sudduth

 

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Dos and Don’ts of Writers


Actually, my title is not precisely true. What is true for me may not be true for you, and that’s okay. There’s more than one way to be successful, and more than one definition of success. As a writer, I think I’ve (finally) figured out what success is to me. Not that I wouldn’t love JK Rowling money, but the money is not how I define success for me.

(But if a publisher WANTS to throw that kind of money at me, who am I to turn it down?)

In any case, my young writer friends, here is my advice. It’s imperfect, and lord knows I haven’t always followed it, but I try.

1) Join a writers’ group.

I sort of succeeded and sort of failed at this one. I went to a local writers’ group, but they were all about literary fiction and memoir, and I got the sense they weren’t overly impressed by genre fiction. Thing is, I like genre fiction. I didn’t want to be told that my writing was subpar because of what I write. If my writing is subpar, it should be because of how I wrote it.

So I joined an RWA group in a town about three hours from where I live. I went for about two years, but it proved too hard to get there on time. Also, I got tired of getting lectured for being ten minutes late, when I had left the house before dawn to get there. So, kind of a fail there, too.

But, I joined RWA national and a couple on line chapters. I’ve gained loads of good information from those sources, so that is helpful. And I’ve found a critique partner, which is lovely. But I think my writing journey would be easier if I were a more active member (I’m a bit of a lurker).

2) Get a critique partner.

It took me a long time to do this. But getting a critique partner helps you see where your writing is falling down. It has helped me tighten up scenes, re-
work awkward sentences, and helped with pacing. All of which is necessary if you want to get published.

Speaking of published, there’s a bit of advice out there about making sure you’re ready before you start querying. Yeah, no. No one is ever ready to query before they start. I queried before my book was ready. You will, too.

But, if you happen to get a rejection from an agent or an editor that gives you advice, I suggest you take it.

That being said,

3) Query.

Your book will never get published if you don’t. If you have rewritten the same book 15 times, but are planning on tinkering with it just a little more until it’s absolutely perfect, you will never actually query. Here’s why:

A) Your book will never be perfect.

B) if you firmly believe in the perfection of your book, you’ll be more resistant to taking an agent/editor’s advice and make changes. And trust me, you need to make changes.

C) Striving for perfection is admirable. But, since A) is true, if you don’t let your baby go and start querying, then you’ll NEVER query. Save that next set of rewrites for after the first or second wave of rejections.

4) Keep writing.

Is that manuscript done? Set it aside and start something else. While you’re waiting for responses to your query, write that next book. It will be good for you and all of your manuscripts.

5) Don’t give up.

The only thing separately published writers from ones who aren’t is persistence. The only thing keeping you from achieving success is you. No book of yours will ever be published if you give up. Maybe it won’t be your first or your second book (both MS number one and MS number two are gathering cyber dust in my computer. I could probably query number two again with a few revisions. MS number one isn’t ready. And possibly never will be).

So if it’s not your first one, maybe it will be your second or your third or your fifth. Just keep in trying.

That’s it for now. Anyone else have advice they’d like to share with the group?

M