Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Writers: Elevate Your Concept

After a weekend retreat with Larry Brooks ( and the authors from TARA my local RWA chapter, I think I may have the answer to being stuck. I also have to thank author, Linda Bleser who took some additional time to listen through my concerns and made a brilliant observation that caused the problem to unravel and my forward momentum to fall into place based on Larry Brook's book Story Physics.

While we were all deciding whether we were pantsers or plotters, I decided I fell somewhere in the middle. I need the freedom to plan in my head before I start, but I can't write without structure. Of all the different advice I've read, the one thing I took away from this weekend was about elevating each part of the structure to a "stellar" level (...or at least half of the points) rather than being satisfied with "good."

After years of being a reader, it's easy to fool yourself into believing you may be able to write without studying the craft, but once stuck there's nothing like knowing what you're doing to get it fixed. Hell, knowing is what helped me recognize something was wrong. Analyzing and evaluating is what helped me fix it...well, I'm starting to fix it. Next time, I'll begin with the structure and hopefully avoid this mess.

I'm off to work. I suggest you visit Larry Brooks at for some insightful writing advice.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Witch's Tattoo available... Now

New Release Available
Witch's Tattoo by Eliza March

Coming ... October 13th, 2014
The Wild Rose Press

Pride or power, lust or love, life or death.

Witch's Tattoo

Published: 10/13/2014 
Hauntings in the Garden
Michael Veret, Acadian coven leader, knows his destiny lies with his soul mate, the witch with the ability to restore the power of the Pentacle, a  power needed to release the coven's spirit gifts, but his heart belongs to the young grad student he can't have.

On her birthday Lisette Bouchard discovers the legacy her parents died for. She's a powerful witch, with no training, no mentor, and no coven. Her on and off again relationship with Michael is over...until she discovers he's the warlock who must approve her membership. When she finds out they are also soul mates destined to fulfill the pentacle’s prophecy, Lisette isn't certain she wants destiny ruling her love life.
What she is certain of is she wants Michael to love her for herself and not because he needs her for her power.Will Michael be able to prove he’s loved her all along before evil steals her away?

Rating: Hot

Male heads turned and testosterone levels rose. Hard to miss all that sexual magnetism. Michael’s possessive instincts kicked in, and he had to garner control to force back the jealousy.
The skirt she wore barely covered her sexy ass—like a black leather napkin filled with wicked delights. Damn, the witch looked hot enough to melt ice-forged steel. He tortured himself with the image of her wearing just the pendant and the boots—thigh high, black leather cut in lacy patterns, exposing her creamy skin below.
The tips of her long black hair brushed her narrow waist the way it had the night he watched her in the scrying mirror. His fingers twitched with the desire to trace her plunging neckline. A neckline that bared her deep cleavage and the pendant. He marveled at the way the metal settled between her pale ivory mounds, and imagined how warm the medallion grew against her soft flesh.
As she planted herself in front of him with one hip cocked defiantly and her hand outstretched, he warred with his inner needs. Michael held back to inspect each lovely inch of her and savor the moment. He couldn’t wait for the inevitable. To touch, to taste, to conquer…and to surrender. But not here. Not now.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

THRILLER: Storm Surge by Sharron Riddle

      Storm Surge 

When international private investigator, Jack Orten hires on to protect a businesswoman and her daughter from a serial killer threatening their lives, he discovers the killer is one of a number of  genetically engineered assassins implanted into American society.

As a CAT 5 hurricane rages ashore in the Tampa Bay area, Jack struggles to keep his feelings for Julie in check and her young daughter safe while battling nature and an unstoppable monster. Trusting it all to family or love may not be enough to save them.
Suspense Thriller
Rating: Sensual
Page Count: 280

The smell of fish from last night’s supper hung in the air, and something else that reminded Julia of sulfur from spent firecrackers.
Lights from the cable box glowed beneath the dark TV. The refrigerator hummed in the kitchen. Everything appeared normal, except obviously something was terribly wrong.
“Ryan? Zach?” Her footsteps echoed on the tiled foyer. She pressed the switch for the hall light, stifling a scream when the brightness blazed, then laughed at herself.
Still grinning, she saw him lying on his side by Ryan’s door. The dog, Chompers. Blood matted his coat, his tongue hanging from his slack mouth.
The hallway seemed too narrow, Susie’s open doorway stretching further away. No, no, no, she mumbled, fingers jabbing the phone, feet stumbling along the hall.
Cloying smells of sweet copper and other more sinister things lingered in the still air.
“911, what’s your emergency?” a voice asked. She stood in the threshold, fumbling with the flashlight app, beaming the light around the room.
Blood splattered and sprayed the walls. The voice continued on the phone’s speaker, like an insect buzzing in her hand.
Reading the bright red words on the wall, her pulse thundered. Amy waited alone in the car, in the dark.

The killer might still be here. Shouting the address to the operator, Julia raced from the house—terrified by the killer who had written those words above Susie’s butchered body.
“The whore and her kid die next.”

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

FOR LOVE AND LOYALTY - A ‘Reverse’ Time Travel

Can you all welcome author Diana Rubino who is visiting me again, this time to introduce her new release:
FOR LOVE AND LOYALTY, a ‘reverse’ time travel by Diana Rubino and The Wild Rose Press

Can a 15th century king and a 21st century woman find love and rewrite the past, or will time tear them apart? Time travel has always fascinated me, and this story had a strange birth: my long-time critique partner Bonnie and I were tossing around ideas for my next book, and she asked me to picture Richard III in modern times blow-drying his hair. The rest is history!

England, 1476: A wizard’s charm sweeps Richard, Duke of Gloucester far, far away.

England, 2014: The Richard III Society’s annual séance doesn’t go quite as planned.

Julianna Hammond believes their mysterious visitor really is Richard. As a loyal Ricardian, she feels obligated to educate him on past and present. In dismay, Richard learns of his destiny in a certain battle, and his depiction in a certain play. Julianna and he wonder: can history be rewritten?
Back in the Middle Ages, Richard’s brothers King Edward and George Plantagenet are determined to find him­-wherever he is­-with the help of a little magic conjured up by a wizard. Since the wizard can’t say no to money or a lady, Edward-infatuated Elizabeth Woodville isn’t far behind them.
Changing one’s destiny is complicated. So is falling in love. When the two collide, three brothers, three women, and history will never be the same.

An excerpt from FOR LOVE AND LOYALTY

“Well, you’re certainly a hero,” Julianna lavished well-deserved praise on him. “You’re kind, sensitive, brave, warm and very good looking. Everything a hero should be. But why don’t you think you’re romantic?”
Richard shook his head. “I never brought a lady flowers, I don’t pour honeyed flattery over them like Ned, I don’t recite poetry like George, I don’t cook gourmet cuisine. All I can do is spread bananas on pizza.”
She smiled and sipped at her wine. “It’s romantic if your intentions are sincere. I enjoyed your banana pizza more than any gourmet meal I could get at LaGrenouille.”
“Sincere?” He buffed the Middleham Ring on his shirt. “Mayhap. I don’t put forth any false fronts. Nay, there’s naught false about my front.” He took a quick glance downward. Her eyes couldn’t help but follow.
“That’s my idea of romantic,” she assured him. “Not flowers or poetry or flattery. Just sincerity. That other stuff is just veneer, and it wears quite thin after a while.”
His eyes pinned her and she took another sip to ease the tension. “Simply speak your heart. Share your heart. That’s what romance is all about—to me,” she said softly.
He reached over, took the glass from her hand and placed it on the table in one swift, graceful movement. “Then may we share some tonight?”
The hearth glowed, seductive music floated through the lounge—the  perfect ambiance. But now that the moment was here, the reality of it nudged her in a stern warning:
“Come here, Julianna.” The way he opened his arms to her, she couldn’t refuse. One warm embrace can’t hurt. But once she was in that embrace, and his lips sought hers, it felt as natural as breathing. He kissed her lovingly, gently and thoroughly. Stopping him would be as wrong as telling the sun not to shine.
Her heart beat the same primitive tattoo as the music surrounding them.
When his hand slid to her breast, she knew she had to take charge or nature would. “Richard—” She hadn’t meant sound so whispery, but her voice was nowhere to be found. She cleared her throat. “We can’t get involved. It’ll be too much heartache if something happens and you get sent back.” She wondered how convincing she really sounded, with her fingers still wound through his hair and her body half pressed up against his.
“I’m not going back, Julianna. I’m resigned to my fate. I’m not like Ned, I don’t rake every wench that crosses my path. I keep my desire firmly in check. But right now my desire is about to burn a hole in these thin trousers so I’ll have to go back to wearing that torturous denim castrati garment.”
She let out a deep sigh and tried to calm her breathing. There’d been some pretty heavy breathing till now. “Richard, I’ve been fighting my feelings all along and doing a pretty good job of it so far. Don’t let me weaken. Don’t let me fall in love with you. There’s enough weird stuff going on here already. We’ve got enough to do.”

 “I’ve grown very fond of you, Julianna.” He stroked her cheek. “And I’m still growing.” He relaxed his embrace and brushed her lips with his before sitting back. “However, you must lead and I follow, as this is your domain. I’m also a gentleman. If this were Ned sitting here, you’d have been ravished thrice already, in six different ways, and on your way to fetch him a beer.”
“Doesn’t he take no for an answer?” Her hand still played through his hair.
“He doesn’t even ask.”
“Looks like he doesn’t mind never going back to his own time. After tonight, George might not, either.”
“Well, Ned covered his arse quite well. He informed me he left the kingdom in good hands with no detail unattended to, and George will go anywhere there’s wenches and booze, even if it’s back to the stone age.”
“I wonder if you can go back by sheer force of will. Our minds are so much more powerful than we think.” A jumble of thoughts entered her head and vanished. This wasn’t the time to ponder telekinesis, as he tickled her earlobe and ran his thumb over her bottom lip. All she could do was close her eyes and let the exquisite sensations take over. She instinctively moved closer. Their bodies touched, his skin against hers. One more kiss, just one more of those delicious warm kisses, and I’ll call it a night, she convinced herself. Their lips met.
The door knocker pounded.

Visit Diana at:

and paperback:

Monday, October 6, 2014

HEAD DESK: Can you write without a plan? What's your process?

We know this isn't
 an author like me,
because he's wearing a suit,
not a robe and slippers.
But, his desk looks like mine.
 HEAD DESK moments. Can you write without a plan? Well that's a good question.
Sure. I guess. But can you finish the book without a plan ? is a better question. Every book I've written started with a spark of an idea, an impression of
a scent or vision or emotion. Hmm, one of my senses was involved. Then it evolved with a variety of scenes and characters.
I remembered I needed conflict to challenge these people in their everyday world. I gave them that. I gave them a background and a growth arc, and still while writing, at the 75% mark in my books I stuttered to a stop. I knew the end, or  so I thought. Now how to get there. Sounds simple enough, right? But the essential link wasn't there. 
The characters were right there, in place. They encountered the final conflict...
Ah, perhaps this is the problem. Doubt?
Have I truly arrived at the final conflict? Will my characters find a way to resolve it satisfactorily for the reader? Will it be exciting? Will it wrench the heart and tie the readers' insides in knots before the satisfying conclusion. Can I create the imaginary stairway that will entice the reader to take that leap of faith and make a run for the finish line? Dive in--fight the battle with the characters?
Good grief! At my three quarter mark I stop and mull over everything before moving to the conclusion. This is where I determine if I can tie up all my loose ends, where I question the story's continuity. After writing all this, will I be able to transit the life my characters had before to what is about to happen to them. And then, will there be a happily ever after?
I'm learning that planning plays a big part in writing, and even if you successfully write by the seat of your pants, you probably have the plan in your head all along. You see the story all the way through--lucky you--step by step, scene by scene. I get stalled because I'm still planning in my head when I start--seeing changes in my mind at that elusive creative moment right before I wake, instead of working them all out on paper or keyboard early on. There's a lot to be said for a detailed synopsis. Writing it before instead of after suddenly makes sense. If you decide to change something along the way, go back to the synopsis and work the changes out there. It'll be easier than doing a major rewrite on the novel.
 In conclusion, every author has his/her own methods and processes. What works for me may not work for you, and so also the reverse is true. Will you share your process? Have you encountered problems and found solutions to deal with them?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Heavy Netting (The Lobster Cove Series) by Guest Author, Nicki Greenwood

When I heard about the Lobster Cove series I was truly excited. I've been on a "let's travel to Maine" kick I can't shrug off, then this is the next best thing.  An entire series that takes place in Lobster Cove,  a small imaginary town in Maine. So to start your trip into the series, please welcome Author, Nicki Greenwood who wrote one of the first of the books to be released. Although hers is a romantic suspense, there are all sorts of genres being written in Lobster Cove. Enjoy!~~Eliza

Author, Nicki Greenwood
Thanks for hosting me today, Eliza!  I’d like to share my experience writing for The Wild Rose Press’s new “Lobster Cove” series.  This was an exciting opportunity for me – a double whammy, because I’d never published a short story before, and never written for a publisher’s series. When Rhonda (Editor-in-Chief of The Wild Rose Press) approached my local RWA chapter with the news that they were beginning a new series, I jumped at the chance.

Writing for Lobster Cove

I think the most intriguing part of writing for this series was the way it interconnected with the stories of the other writers.  We built and populated an entire town, so fully that I think I could be set down in Lobster Cove and know my way around as if I visited every summer.  The collaboration was amazing, down to the uniform and menu at Maggie’s Diner, which features in my book, HEAVY NETTING, a short romantic suspense.

Writing a short story was a challenge in itself.  I had been used to writing full-length novels, and it was a real test to tell a fully-fledged story arc in a shorter form.  I’m thrilled with the result, and I hope you have just as much fun meeting Bran and Jenna as I had writing them.

Heavy Netting

Branson Cudahy is as southern as it gets, a cyber crime investigator from happily-landlocked Lexington, Kentucky.  He has been chasing a hacker for three years, and now the trail has led him to Lobster Cove, Maine ... which is a real problem for a guy with a shellfish allergy.

Jenna Sanborn waits tables to pay the bills, but she dreams of opening a quilt shop in the heart of town.  She’d never even think of leaving Lobster Cove, but the handsome newcomer is tempting beyond her wildest imaginings.

Bran and Jenna never expect the whirlwind romance that comes out of their meeting.  As hard as they fight to control their feelings, their hearts are fighting to push them over that dizzying lover’s leap.  Will love win out, or will the hacker—and their dreams—slip the net?


“All right, Jenna,” he said. “Tell you what. I’m gonna be there about four o’clock. If you want to meet me there and talk Lobster Cove, I’ll be all ears. If not, no pressure.”
She giggled. Giggled. Like a teenager going to her first concert with a cute boy. Mortified, and now convinced that her cheeks were as red as a stop sign, she backed away. “I’ll keep it in mind. See you later, Mister Cudahy.”
His grin sent a flutter through her midsection. “Bran.”
“Okay. Bran.” She waved goodbye, then hurried off down the street with her groceries and would-be-truant oranges.
As she walked, she sensed his gaze on her, and she beamed, flattered and flustered, and for once, feeling beautiful.

HEAVY NETTING  On sale now! 

Nicki, thanks for joining us today. 

See what’s next for Nicki...

Paranormal Romance FLASHPOINT available October 1st

AIR: Book Three in Nicki Greenwood's paranormal lite Elemental Series
Coming soon 

Excerpts, news, reviews, and book trailers at 
Contact Nicki Greenwood - Email: