THE FATE OF THE TALA Not Yet – But Close!

This is the time of year when kitties display their cunning in knowing when and where the rising sun will hit – and their wisdom in knowing to be ready for it. Also: tongue baths and sunbaths go together. Jackson, cat guru, at your service.

So, today is January 15, 2020. But no, it is not the release day for THE FATE OF THE TALA.

For those who don’t follow the podcast, I can officially announce that THE FATE OF THE TALA is done, done, done!! It came out at just shy of 109K and is in the hands of my fantastic editor, Rebecca Cremonese. I told her not to bitch at me about how long it is; she said not to bitch at her about how long it takes. So we’ll see. As soon as I get her edits, I should be able to turn that around and get it formatted within a couple of days. I’m hoping to get it uploaded and on sale the last week of January.

And wow: that book was a difficult write. Some books go slower than others, and that one was determined to unspool at its own pace. With a Prince

It’s not just me, either, because I’ve switched over to moving some other projects forward and those are speeding right along. One thing I’ve noticed – in trying to figure out why my overall wordcount production has dropped – is that some genres also write faster for me

than others. I could see from my handy charts that 2014 and 2015 were my highest wordcount years. I went to writing full time at the end of 2015, so this was NOT the trend I expected. What I’ve realized, however – and what the chart doesn’t show – is that I also moved to writing a LOT more fantasy, and much denser fantasy, and pretty much stopped writing any erotic/contemporary. The closest I came was writing books two and three of the Missed Connections series, WITH A PRINCE and SINCE LAST CHRISTMAS, in 2017 – and, notably, 2017 was my third-highest wordcount year. It’s anecdotal data, but the correlation is enough to satisfy me.

I’d forgotten that I used to alternate writing Fantasy stories with Erotic/Contemporary ones. And that worked for me. Many of you know I hadn’t finished the last two books I’d planned for the Missed Connections series because they just weren’t selling as well as the Fantasies. But, heck, even books that don’t sell amazingly well are better than books I haven’t written! Besides which, some of my other erotic stuff – PETALS & THORNS, the Falling Under series, and the Facets of Passion books – have all continued to sell steadily. Clearly writing those has served to keep my words flowing all around.

Also, the Missed Connections books have very nearly earned out my investment – I’m only about $500 in the hole on the three books so far – so those of you waiting for Julie and Ice’s stories may yet be in luck! Also, I think I’ll write more short erotic stuff, if only as a palate cleanser. Dark Wizard, anyone? You know I’ve been stewing over that one for a long time.

For the sharp-eyed among you who noticed that 2019 was the lowest wordcount year since I began tracking (*sigh*), I attribute that mainly to taking off most of July and all of August from writing – the longest break I’ve taken in ten years! Also, everything I did write was Fantasy, one project worked up an entirely new world in a new-to-me genre, and one was the very slow moving THE FATE OF THE TALA. So it goes.

Now, off to write something erotic… ~rubs hands together in glee~

1 With a Prince E-Book Cover

Are You Looking for a Thanksgiving Romance?

1 With a Prince E-Book Cover

Looking for a Thanksgiving romance? My contemporary romances aren’t as well known as the fantasy stuff, but I have such a soft spot for this series about a group of college friends sharing a house in Chicago after graduation. WITH A PRINCE has awkward parental meetings, a friends Thanksgiving complete with a major fight and hash-tagging. Oh, and ice-skating, hot chocolate, and hotter sexytimes. 

The guy on the train is just Marcia’s type. A face like an angel, a scent like raw honey, treats her like he has a white horse and suit of armor stowed in his messenger bag. Perfect.

Too perfect. No guy like that would be interested in prim, awkward Marcia, notorious goody-goody and a twentysomething still clutching her v-card. She’s been following rules her whole life—but somewhere, the game changed. And left her behind.

So when she meets Damien, with his rumbling motorbike, gleaming piercings, and wicked imagination, she doesn’t care that he’s the exact opposite of “her type.” Her type would never dare her into such shocking, fiendishly inventive adventures—and she can’t wait to say yes.

Yes to whiskey in the middle of a workday. Yes to letting her hands roam over his body from the back of his bike. Yes to a fling full of wild abandon and absolutely no long-term potential. Except Damien’s not just the straightforward bad boy she imagined. And as they burn through Chicago’s nights, Marcia can’t shake the fear that this happiness is just another fairy tale…

You can get it here

Or think ahead to Christmas reading and get the three book set, which includes the sequel, SINCE LAST CHRISTMAS!

 

 

 

 

Release Day for SINCE LAST CHRISTMAS!

Santa arrived just in time! The third Missed Connections book, SINCE LAST CHRISTMAS, made it out for Christmas!

(We could even call it a Christmas Miracle!)

Anyway, it’s out and available for… did I mention CHRISTMAS??

Hey, there’s a menorah joke in it, too. 

Buy the Book

 
A little excerpt for you all!
 
**********

With renewed determination, I wove through the crush looking for Brad. The whole point of bringing him was so I wouldn’t have to stand around alone. I’d brought him to be my arm candy. Men did it all the time, so I refused to feel bad about wanting the same. I craned my neck, looking for him. There he was, taking a group pic with some guys using the telescoping selfie-stick he kept in his jacket pocket like a ballpoint pen. The pocket-protector of the modern era—that fashion statement telegraphed social media aficionado. The guys held up their signature cocktails, identical smiles of white and even teeth, the flash strobing from flattering shadows to glaring bright reveal.

“Amy.” Jon Ahearn appeared in front of me, a serious smile on his stubbly face. And not stubbly in a hip statement way, but in an “I forgot to shave” way. Or maybe an “I didn’t bother to buy new razor blades” way. He, for one, had barely changed since our teens. I’d know him anywhere, though we only ever saw each other anymore at this party.

“Jon. Merry Christmas.” I gave him a light hug with lots of air in it, trying to look past him unobtrusively. They were trying another pose.

“How’ve you been?” Jon asked. “I mean,” he added, “you look fantastic. But then, you always do.”

“Thanks.” I gave up keeping an eye on Brad and focused a smile on Jon. I would not be like our ruder classmates, forever scanning for someone more important to talk to. Jon had been a scholarship student, too, only he’d been defiantly uncaring about it, wearing whatever and refusing to play any of the polite games. He was at Wildwood, he’d once told me, to get into MIT, and that was all he cared about. He’d done it, too, then went for graduate school at University of Chicago. “How’s grad school?” I asked politely. Then jumped as my phone chimed with notifications. I sipped more from my drink.

“A gauntlet from hell,” Jon confided, adding a rueful grimace. “Which is exactly how they intend it to be. Semester ended today, so I at least have teaching over with, except for the grading. I’m hoping to get some substantial work done on my dissertation over the break.”

“Hmm,” I said. He’d told me at a previous reunion party what he was working on. Last year or the one before. He worked on an intersection of math, physics, and engineering, something esoteric enough that I’d retained little of it. Perpetual motion and entropy… Nope. Wasn’t in my head, so I shouldn’t try or I’d butcher it. “That will be good.”

“How’s your job—ready for world domination yet?”

I smiled. “World domination through silk and cashmere, anyway, but yeah—working at Exposition Way is amazing and Adelina is even looking at my designs.”

“She’s smart then, because you’re really talented.”

“Thanks.” We gazed at each other and I was thinking up something else to ask when my phone chimed again. At least I didn’t jump that time.

“Do you need to get that?” Jon pointed his chin at my clutch, hanging from its silver chain against my hip. “Your phone.”

“No.” I should have silenced the damn thing. Flicking open the purse catch, I reached in and flipped the side switch to mute. “It’s just tags—Instagram, Facebook. You know.”

“Tags. Yeah. No.” He shook his head and I had to laugh.

“You’re still not doing social media? I can’t believe you’ve escaped its clutches entirely.”

“The secret is never looking at the stuff.” Then he tilted his head slightly and added a significant lift to his dark brows. “I never heard from you.”

Quite the transition, there. I searched my mind. Had I promised to call him or something? People ask me for job leads sometimes—fashion is all about who you know—but that wouldn’t be Jon. Besides, we didn’t have any contact outside of these semi-awkward annual reunions. Jon was part of a past I didn’t like to think about, and I’d thought he, if not delighted about that, at least had not objected.

He watched me flailing, not giving any more hints, a kind of benign resignation settling over his expression. Jon wasn’t unhandsome, once you got past the scruffiness, with curly black hair that tended toward unruly—especially as he never bothered to get a good haircut—and dark brown eyes, intense with intelligence. I felt a bit like a lab rat that failed to escape the maze. No cheese for you, I thought to myself grimly, and awarded myself a healthy swallow of the cocktail.

“You don’t remember,” he said. Not accusing, but stating a fact. He shook his head a little, as annoyed with himself as I’d been about my phone. Then he met my gaze again and, to my surprise—and you know I don’t like surprises—I saw anger in them. Jon was pissed at me and I had no idea why.

“So, what is it?” he asked in a measured tone that didn’t fool me. “Do you have some special pit in your head where you toss everything that has to do with me?”

**************

Need those buy links again? 

(ho ho ho!)

 

And all of you have a wonderful holiday season, whatever and however you celebrate!

1 With a Prince E-Book Cover

More Missed Connections! Cover Reveal and Deets

Coming in two weeks!!! The next Missed Connections book: WITH A PRINCE. 

It’s out on May 30. Yes, that’s sooner than I’d originally predicted, but enough of you loved LAST DANCE and said sparkly things to me about wanting Marcia’s book, that I caved and went ahead and wrote. 

Really, you made me excited about the story, too. And the timing worked out. Win all around!!!

You can preorder the book here. Or – and this is NEW – read through Kindle Unlimited. Yes, I’m putting WITH A PRINCE, LAST DANCE, and EXACT WARM UNHOLY (all the indie contemporary erotic romance books) on Kindle Unlimited. Tell your KU-loving friends! 

A challenge for you all: I need to name the coffee and pastry shop referred to in this book, which will undoubtedly crop up in later books. The reference comes up in a conversation between Charley, Marcia, and Amy, as follows:

“Finish the story, Marcia, or I’ll sit on you. Prince Charming plops himself next to you, sees that you’re romanticizing the stalkery post and…”

“And nothing! What was the plan? He’d walk me from my L stop, and, oh, then we’d stop at some cute little bar and—”

“No, that pastry shop you love,” Amy inserted.

“Oh yeah.” Charley nodded. “Marcia would fall for the guy who says ‘let’s stop at [name], have a cupcake and an espresso and talk.’”

So, what should we call it? Comment here or on social media with ideas and the winner gets a prize! Free book of her choice and a listing in the Acknowledgements. Hey, let’s “sweeten” the deal! The person who suggests the name I choose gets a cupcake from me! I’ll go for local delivery, if possible. If you’re international… we’ll work something out. 

Give me your Little Shoppe of Pastries ideas!

Also, this is what WITH A PRINCE is about:

The guy on the train is just Marcia’s type. A face like an angel, a scent like raw honey, treats her like he has a white horse and suit of armor stowed in his messenger bag. Perfect.

Too perfect. No guy like that would be interested in prim, awkward Marcia, notorious goody-goody and a twenty-something still clutching her v-card. She’s been following rules her whole life—but somewhere, the game changed. And left her behind.

So when she meets Damien, with his rumbling motorbike, gleaming piercings, and wicked imagination, she doesn’t care that he’s the exact opposite of “her type.” Her type would never dare her into such shocking, fiendishly inventive adventures—and she can’t wait to say yes.

Yes to whiskey in the middle of a workday. Yes to letting her hands roam over his body from the back of his bike. Yes to a fling full of wild abandon and absolutely no long-term potential. Except Damien’s not just the straightforward bad boy she imagined. And as they burn through Chicago’s nights, Marcia can’t shake the fear that this happiness is just another fairy tale…

 Just leaving this preorder link here again… 😉

First Chance for the LAST DANCE!

Last Dance

Cover Reveal! The first in my new contemporary, sexy romance series will be out on Tuesday, February 28, 2017!
 
Missed Connections #1
 
“This book kept me up all night! Funny, mysterious and oh so sexy!”
M. O’Keefe USA Today Bestselling Author
 
It was five minutes. His hand on the small of her back. His eyes watching like there was no one else in the crowded club. His body a breath away from hers. A kiss full of heat and need and promise.
 
But then the stranger disappears. And Charlotte Emory can’t forget him. Worse, according to the dating Rules she and her four best friends swear by, all she can do is post an ad online. No names, no numbers. Just a missed connection – and the hope he’ll meet her, and see where another dance leads.
 
Except Mr. Mystery has his game, too, and he isn’t playing for only one night. He tempts Charley into a daring exploration of power, lust, and suspense, where even the most innocent requests sound indecent…and the indecent ones make her burn all night.
 
If she plays by the Rules, they’ll never get past teasing each other. But rules were made to be broken…