Friday, May 30, 2014

Author Spotlight - P. J. MacLayne

We're back to author spotlight this week. I'm excited to present this author. She's written a paranormal romance, one of my favorite genres. So, we'll get right to it. 

P.J. MacLayne is a computer geek by day and a writer by night. Until a few years ago, she focused on writing poetry. But there were always stories floating around inside her head that were too long to fit into poetic form.
            Then, a few years ago, she heard about National Novel Writing Month. It sounded like fun, and she thought about giving it a try, but let it slide. When it rolled around again a year later, she couldn't resist.
            For those of you who have never heard of it, National Novel Writing Month (fondly called NaNoWriMo) challenges writers to write an entire novel in the space of one month. Well, 50,000 words, at least. It's harder than it sounds, according to P.J., especially working a full time job at the same time. I concur. I didn't make the word count she did. 
            That first year she only wrote 49,000 words and ran out of story. But it was enough to get her hooked. Right now, she has three books in the works, in various states of progress. Thankfully, two of them are part of the same series, and that makes it a lot easier to keep track of her characters.

            Her current book, Wolves' Pawn, was started two years later, and is actually the result of a dream. She admits to having a lot of weird dreams, and thinks it's because she has to be so organized at work, that at night, while she sleeps the creative side of her brain takes over. she never thought she'd end up writing a paranormal romance, because most of her other books (currently unpublished) are more in the cozy mystery genre. But she says the story wouldn't let go of her and she had to write it down.
            P.J. says she fell in love with her main character, Dot, and hopes the readers will too.  Writing Dot's trials and tribulations made P.J. feel guilty, but the promise of a happy ending made her keep going. So here's a quick excerpt from the book. And yes, Dot has to get herself out of a bad situation once again.

Hope you enjoy the excerpt: 

            They were being followed. The four right turns they’d made proved it. One SUV, one pair of motorcyclists. She and Tasha needed to split up. Dot spotted a break in traffic, geared down, made a hard left and headed down an alley. Tasha followed her, but oncoming cars blocked their pursuers for the time being. At the end of the alley, a left-hand turn put them going the opposite way she wanted to go, but also gave them a chance to pull into the parking lot of a biker bar. She nosed her bike among the others and checked to see that Tasha did the same.
            A couple of bikers stood outside smoking, and she pulled off her helmet as she walked up to them, fluffing up her hair with one hand, waiting until Tasha caught up with her. “Follow my lead,” Dot said quietly. Then, fluttering her eyes and leisurely unzipping her jacket, she went up to them. “How’s it going, boys?”
            “Better now,” grinned one. “Care for a smoke?”
            Dot accepted a cigarette and let the biker light it for her, while she watched the parking lot and the street beyond. “You ever have any trouble with anyone messing with your bikes here?”
            “Used to, but since the bar owner added a new security system,” he poked another of the men in the ribs, “We haven’t had any problems.”
            It must have been a long-standing joke, because both men roared with laughter. Dot grinned. “We were a little worried,” she said. “We stopped at a convenience store down the road and a couple of suspicious guys were eying our bikes. We hope to have time for a beer, but are afraid to leave them for very long.”
            The SUV that had been following them slowly rolled down the street, and Dot felt Tasha jab her in the ribs. She barely nodded in acknowledgment. “If you ladies want a beer, we’ll keep an eye on things out here for you. We’re waiting for a friend anyway.”
            “Thanks.” Dot dropped the cigarette on the ground and ground it into the dirt with the toe of her boot. “Maybe I can buy you one later.”
            “Well, I would like that but the old lady wouldn’t and she’s inside, so I’m going to have to decline the offer.” He grinned. “Maybe another time.”
            She pouted and sighed. “Just my luck.”
            “What are you doing?” Tasha asked as they headed inside.
            “Just playing the game,” Dot explained in a low voice. “And I’m not done yet.”

            You can purchase Wolves' Pawn at the links below:

Connect with P. J. on FB and Twitter

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Blocked, Bamboodled, Befuzzled

You know you can barely think let alone write, or is it picking up your head after the holiday weekend. Well you're not alone. Read my dilemma in Blocked, Bamboodled, Befuzzled Hope it cheers you up.


Friday, May 23, 2014

Friday Feature - Steven

I have a break in my Friday Feature - Author Spotlight. Not sure how that happened, but it's all good. We'll be back next Friday with another author. S,o I thought I'd get into characterization just a little bit, my way.

When I actually began putting Diamonds Aren't Forever into a story, it was already 30-40 pages long and had been a file in my documents for about a year. I was stumped with my first novel. The editing wasn't working, so I took a step back and thought a short story would help.

As I said, the book was already in progress. Characters, Peyton and Steven, her ex-husband, were well on their way to becoming the focal point in the story. But of course, I had no idea of their last names, nor did I have Sebastian and Thierry or the secondary characters.

About that same time I had another story, which will be book 2 in this series about a woman who steals a green tear drop diamond necklace, called The Dragon's Tear. It too had some pages with it. Mainly the setting, the storyline as I've noted just above, but the characters weren't working. The female lead had visions, had originally stolen the necklace of the man who she'd been meeting at local restaurants, etc. Just ideas of ideas.

However I realized that piece was lacking as well, and so I rummaged around in my files for something to latch onto. I had a manuscript titled: Diamond Lust, which later became Diamonds Aren't Forever. Anyway, they had enough similarities that I combined ideas and Diamonds Aren't Forever took off.

The book began to write itself, Sebastian and Thierry came to life. Thierry took the prominent role in the brothers when I originally planned it to be Sebastian. But that worked out as well. Diamond Malloy was always part of the plan, but I was surprised to find he and Amalia were married. And then along came Shelbie and Arabella, and so the story progressed.

But the one character that is close to my heart is Steven. I couldn't think of the a last name. And the name Hawking just kept popping into my head. It finally dawned on me, after I had released the book, that I got that name form a sitcom. Oops. I never meant to do that.

But on with Steven's character. He is based on my husband. His personality, really. Because of course Steven is tall, which my husband is 5'9". Steven like to dress flashy, where my husband works with his hands, wears jeans, and is a sheep farmer. But both men have black wavy hair, like this guy, but with blue eyes, and both have oodles of charm to sweep a girl off her feet.

So you're thinking, does J. L.'s husband have tendencies of a thief a gambler? Not entirely. In fact that was why my husband made the perfect Steven. In the book, Steven isn't a good thief at all. In fact he's out f the business because he's so bad at it. My husband's moral compass is firmly in place. He wouldn't take something that belonged to others.

As for the gambling, every farmer takes a risk on the market, so yes, my husband is a gambler in some respects. He's just cautious about it. I remember when we were first married his animal of choice was hogs. He'd call and get the market report for futures on hog prices.

Hubby is 63, so you do the math. In fact, it's only in the last three months that my husband opened his first email account. His daughters went crazy, posting it all on FB. And his sisters couldn't believe it. But back to my story. So I asked him one day when after he'd checked prices for the next 3-6 months, "why not buy futures?" Futures is a speculation of how the price might be in a few months. He was shocked. He blubbered about not knowing what to do, how much a risk it was, he could lose too much. He went on and on that it was too much of a gamble.

I listened calmly until he was done, and I asked one simple question. "Isn't that what you're doing with the animals themselves?" Silence, sweet, sweet silence. Short lived. He said, "but they're real." I told him the concept was the same, and went on to explain he was gambling that when he took a hog to market that the price would be favorable to him. Buying Futures was the same thing, but just on paper, and a lot less manual labor. We had about 300 hundred pigs at the time.

Needless to say, he didn't bite. But he really helped me out on Steven in the book. So thanks again, baby for coming through.

Enjoy you're Memorial Day weekend.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Feature Friday - Mary Marvella

This week's author spotlight is Mary Marvella. Mary  has been a story teller for as long as she can remember. She tutors students in language arts, writing, and reading - perfect since she taught language arts/English for 15 years.

Mary made up stories as a child, she made up stories for her daughter, and now she's sharing the stories of her heart. Join her for a taste of love, lust, sweet tea, and Southern Comfort.

Mary lives in Georgia, north of Atlanta, and is Southern to the core.

Mary takes a look at some of her learning curves. 

My life has included some steep learning curves for the past few years. I learned to reformat manuscripts so I could Indie publish them. That curve was so steep I often slid back down and landed on my ample ass! (I whined and said bad words, but I managed to upload several of them for ebooks.) When an editor wanted one of my books if I would make changes that didn't sit well with my old fashioned mind, I made them, since they were cosmetic changes only. I had already learned to reformat.
             My daughter was the reason I learned to text. That curve involved getting a keyboard drawer phone and learning more than I thought I wanted to know. 
            Facebook offered another huge curve, but I set up accounts and started Facebook pages and even created a secret persona.  (Tremendous growing pains occurred there).  My current new learning curves involve learning to throw a Facebook event/party ( and learning to use a smart phone.  The phone is smarter than I am! YERK! Someone greased those curves and I keep sliding back down, but I will climb both of them!

Check another of my curves by hitting I have a blog  and am on a group blog,

My latest novel is Protective Instincts, a book of my heart and my first.

Protective Instincts is the story of Brit, a woman who has finally gotten back into life after her husband's death. She thought his death was an accident, but it wasn't, and now someone wants her dead. Yes, it's a romance, so someone wants to protect her.

The hero, Sam, has premonitions that tell him someone is in danger, but not what kind of danger and, of course, his instincts are pointing at Brit, his son's teacher. He needs to protect, but she feels she needs to learn to take care of herself. 

We need a bad guy, so Douglas enters the picture. He's a professional killer of a different kind. No, I won't tell you what kind,  but readers say he's creepy and they are right. 

         The last parent had been a My-kid-is-a-good-student-and-I-can't-believe-he's-failing parent. A look at her grade book and his most recent test score had made a small dent in the mother's superior attitude. The parent had left with a copy of the same list of assignments Brit had given each parent, with a deadline for completing the work for even partial credit. She closed her laptop and put into its carrying case.
         At a sound in the hall Brit glanced up as Mr. James, the custodian, stuck his head in the doorway to warn her to wait for him to escort her from the building. She pulled the old window shades down to the lowest window, shutting out much of the parking lot light. Standing behind her desk, Brit lifted her purse from a cabinet drawer. After checking her desk drawers she glanced up as the lights went out, leaving her room almost dark. Who would've cut off the light when she was visible from the door? She glanced up to see the large silhouette of a man standing in the lit doorway.
         "Mr. James? I'm in here and I still need the light, so could you please cut it back on for a minute?" Brit asked. The silhouette was silent, looming. "Wait you're not Mr. James. Who are you?"
         The dark figure moved silently toward Brit. She could read menace in his stance, the predatory way he moved. Her throat seemed to close for seconds as danger stared her in the eye. No one else should have been in the building this late.
         "Who are you?" Brit repeated, her gut churning. She could see part of his harsh, handsome face but didn't recognize him. She glanced around the room. Not a weapon in sight. She tried to keep her voice calm and authoritative. "Look, you'll have to come back tomorrow if you need a conference. It's after hours."
         "Don't you even know who I am?" a petulant, low-pitched voice murmured. "I'm disappointed, Sugar." He arched a bushy blond eyebrow.
         His voice filled Brit with revulsion. Certain he was toying with her; she moved from behind her desk, grabbed her purse and tote bag. Please, God, let Mr. James be back soon. Would anyone hear her if she screamed or would it just make her tormentor angry? Show no fear. Show no fear. Her brothers had taught her to defend herself against stronger opponents. She could stall this man until she could get past him.
            "After the gifts I sent you last night I expected a warmer welcome from you. I went through a lot of trouble to please you," he drawled. "You weren't very friendly." He crossed muscular arms across a broad chest.

 NO, I will NOT tell you what happens!

This title is available @ Amazon

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Buy the Series

I am a fan of series novels. I love the continuing story of secondary characters. Because I enjoy them so much, I review them. Below you'll find a link to my review of Jenna Ives, author of Programmed to Please and Programmed to Protect.  Buy the Series

I hope you enjoy.


The Tau Ceta Chronicles

Friday, May 2, 2014

Friday Feature - Author Spotlight Jacintha Topaz

I am happy to introduce Feature Friday for my readers. Each week I'll be spotlighting fellow Independent authors and their books.

I am proud to introduce upcoming author Jacintha Topaz. Jacintha is the author of Purr Erotica. Her first book Purr Scent 1 The Meeting in the series now available. I had a chance to talk with Jacintha about how she got started and why she chose this particular subject as her first series. I hope you enjoy the interview.

How did you get started writing erotica?

As a new mom—again—I craved the escape that adult romance allowed me to enter. I indulged in these reads and at first convinced myself that I was just reading erotic romances for my own little naughty research, of course. :-) You see, I was trying to come up with the correct formula to “make it” as a romance author. However, the more adult romances I read, the more my mind wandered to “what if” variations of the stories and writing for a young adult audience eventually seemed too tame for the likes of me.

After reading the work of quite a handful of authors, I realized I wanted to see something different. I kept looking for that something different in every book I read and felt something missing. Then I understood where my work had to enter—that I should go ahead and write what I want to read.

So when my kids go to bed, I write about life before kids. :-) I'm not against writing about the sexy life of mothers, though. In fact, a minor character in the current story I am writing is a single mother.

What kind of erotica do you write?

Well, currently I am writing a BDSM MFF (male-female-female) story. A lot of the menage stories out there are MFM (male-female-male). Most common are two dominant heterosexual men with one submissive heterosexual female. I've stumbled upon a story about a bisexual man who gets the girl and the boy (not kink-related). I've also read one story about two bisexual men with their lady (not kinky either).

My story, however, explores a bi girl being dominated by a MaleDom and a FemDom. The MaleDom in my story is very used to getting his way and quite brash about getting it—you meet him in the first book in the five-part story. The FemDom, who appears in the second book, is a successful executive with a super tough exterior in a man's world; she's out to dominate every man she could as a very detached Mistress. Of course, these two alphas collide and the bi girl is caught in the middle. I'm so looking forward to book three, when the two alphas are trying to dominate each other, but I'm mostly anticipating the sparks that will sizzle when the Mistress struggles to exert her dominance over the other two. Book four shows more of each character's growth, with certain stakes increased. Book five wraps things up, leading to their eventual commitment as a threesome.

I wrote this story with the bi girl in mind, the girl who needs the softness of a woman and the hard edge of a man. After I'm done with this particular story, I intend to explore writing MM and FF romances—contemporary and paranormal with BDSM themes.

Would you say that you write LGBT erotica then?

To be honest, I'm comfortable writing LGB erotica. The T is still in question. I do have a character in mind for one of my romances set in contemporary times and I intend to play with the T in a paranormal context as well.

I like meeting my characters and getting into their heads, getting to the core of who they are and why they do the things they do and where they want to be. You'll see that even in my current BDSM MFF menage story that you will find out some surprises about the little sub. Although I enjoy writing about the FemDom in that story, it's the sub who intrigues me the most because she's the one strong enough to bring together the MaleDom and the FemDom who were at first glance at odds with each other so they would all eventually link up as a threesome. The sub in that story fascinates me and I'm looking forward to sharing their story with readers.

What got you into writing kinky stories?

I love exploring power in my stories. Power over, power within, power under, power with, etc. Hand in hand with that exploration are the gray areas of oppression and consent. So writing in the BDSM context naturally came up for me, and I am grateful that kinky stories have gained traction in recent times—especially with the advent of the Fifty Shades trilogy. Kink has suddenly become a strong niche genre in current times and I'm happy to be contributing to the present wave.

Believe it or not, though, the very first erotic romance books I read were not E.L. James' trilogy! The honors go to Kallypso Masters' Masters at Arms and Nobody's Angel in the Rescue Me Series. For those interested, both books have BDSM MFM (male-female-male) menage scenes.

Can you tell us a little more about the MFF story you're working on right now?

Purr Scent is a five-part story in the Purr Billionaire BDSM Trio series.

Part I: The Meeting
Mariah Olsen has mastered separating work ambitions from personal desires in her climb up the corporate ladder. The one thing she didn't count on was being caught mixing the two when daydreaming in a board meeting with visiting executive Clark Mannings, who has his eyes set on punishing her.

So that's the blurb! :-) Although BDSM is safe, sane and consensual, Clark can be quite imposing; he borders on dubious consent when he hatches a plan to dominate his fledgling submissive Mariah. She doesn't know it yet, but she is bi-curious and you'll find out more about that in Part II: The Makeover.

Here's an Excerpt from Chapter 1

Sitting across the boardroom in utter perfection was Dream God. No other word sufficed to describe that delectable man. Even sitting at such a distance with their executive teams flanked on both sides of the table, the man exuded ruthless sex and raw power that sent a chill down her spine.
The highlight of that morning, of the day, the whole quarter, was that she would see him again. Like clock work, their companies met four times a year to discuss business. After their first contract, she had looked forward to the next and the next and the next...
God, what would it be like to be beneath him? She'd never find out, because she just wasn't that kind of girl. Business was business. Personal was personal. While she liked fucking, she didn't like getting fucked. Mixing the two—business and personal—was a plain invitation to getting fucked. No, thank you. She'd rather just date her vibrator. She'd have a good fucking and no mess—just her mess—to clean up afterward.
Yes, she and her vibrator would have a nice long date tonight. She shifted in her seat.
“What do you think, Ms. Olsen?” The deep baritone voice of Dream God cut into her reverie.
No, not Dream God! Clark...Clark Mannings. Business only.  
Caught daydreaming across the boardroom, Mariah blinked at the object of her reverie and saw the broad shoulders of the red-hot sexy self-made man in a navy tailored three-piece suit. With black hair long enough to frame him as a pirate or a rogue in another time and place, Mariah shuddered at the thought of being this man's enemy . . . or captive. She fought a blush from creeping across her face.
Right now, even sitting at the head of the table across from him, she didn't feel any more safe—or any less wet—than she would have felt sitting next to him. Didn't even matter that their executive teams were in the same room. As potentially partnering CEOs again, the command he held, the presence he had, the air he snuffed out of the room just by breathing and being—all of that and more said a lot. A lot of what she did not need right now at the moment.
His penetrating gaze almost unmanned her. Or unwomanned her. Or whatever.
Mariah's fleeting glance at the magnificent view of the Seattle skyline steeled her courage and she sat as erect as the Space Needle. No way would she ask the man to repeat the question. Nor would she back down. She braved a schooled smile and spoke in what she hoped was a crisp and calm manner. “That shall be all for today, Mr. Mannings. My team will review these details and get back to you about the proposition.”
At the dismissal, their executive teams exited.
She'd never sent him away empty-handed, without verbal agreement or a signed contract. She'd probably have to pay for this later, but she'd rather keep her hand. She needed both of her hands for her hot date tonight.
How did the air get even stuffier with less people? Perhaps because there was only one occupant left besides her, the occupant that mattered.
Mariah didn't need to look up to know that Clark was still in the room. She adjusted her taupe pencil skirt as she stood up and slowly collected her things to retreat to her office. As if even his presence wasn't enough, he guarded the exit like a bulldog ready to tear anyone apart who dared pass.
“What game are you playing, Ms. Olsen?” he hissed at her ear. His warm breath sent a tingle down her spine and her senses went on full alert. So what if the man was edible?
Survival instinct took over. Show no weakness.
“Mr. Mannings, I believe you have overstayed your welcome.” She shot him a prim smile and proceeded to pass him.
He grabbed her arm, stilling her resolve to leave him behind. “I've watched you negotiate for two years now. Where. Did. You. Go?”
Taken aback by his admission and the succeeding demand, Mariah pulled in a sharp intake of air. “Mr. Mannings, you must let go before I call security.” She glared at him and directed her gaze to the offending hand. He may be a frequent visitor in her erotic fantasies, but he was not welcome in real life. Good girls turned CEOs had to remain pinnacles of upright standing all the more in a male-dominated world intent on cut-throat competition.
“As you wish, Ms. Olsen.” He dropped his hold and let her pass, muttering, “This isn't over.”
Every hair at the back of her neck stood on end as she carefully made her way to her office. Lunch couldn't have come sooner.

Available @

Connect with Jacintha @