Sleeping Alone . . . and Still No Covers!

Tuesday night was only the second time in 28 years Hubby and I have slept apart. And it certainly felt strange. I usually sleep with a leg draped over him, and kept waking up with a cramp in my calf from stretching my toe across the bed trying to find him.

He had to spend the night in a sleep study lab. Writing buddy Jeff Salter from Four Foxes One Hound asked why I didn’t stay there with him. Well, for one thing they wouldn’t let me! I tried to cling to the door frame, but it was two on one. Like I told him, it’s a little hard to keep your leg wrapped around the potted plant with one tech dragging you from behind and the other peeling you off things.

Probably wouldn’t have worked anyway. There were far too many wires I might have dislodged. By the time they finished hooking hubby up he was decidedly disgruntled. Don’t think it was what he expected. Wired head to toe, he had straps around his chest, stomach, head and thighs to keep dozens of wires and leads somewhat in place. Can’t decide if he looked more like a bad bondage experience, or a Junior High science experiment run amok. And when they put the combo oxygen meter/snore mic in place? I had to pretend to cough to cover laughing because it looked like an up-the-nose retainer from hell. Knew he was mad because his eyes started to glow that strange blue that happens when he’s angry. I did as I promised and called when I made it home okay. The tech that answered kept snorking through the phone — that half laugh, half chortle sound people make when they try to laugh and breathe at the same time —  because he thought it was hysterical hubby refused to even lay down until he heard I was home safe. He hung up snorking again. Said he was going to tell hubby I left the message I’d decided to stop off at Michael’s (a local club) for a couple of drinks. 

I wasn’t the only one missing hubby when I got home. Again and again the dogs went to the back door, only to turn and look at me. It was obvious they were saying “Yo! You forget something in the truck? How about getting him?” They wandered the house off and on all night looking for him. I guess Cochise, my rescue Pit, was determined not to lose both of his kibble keepers, because he crawled up on the bed about halfway through the night. Ever tried to doze back off with a 60 pound dog draped across you calves? I couldn’t chase him  off. With an entire king sized bed available, he commandeered my half with me in it, and wouldn’t budge. He even had all the covers! I must feel really, really safe where we live, because when I got up at 4AM to pick Hubby up at 5:30, I found hadn’t even locked the door. Don’t tell him I forgot, though. I lied and told him I double and triple checked everything.  (Hey, I thought I did!)

But one good thing happened to keep my mind off being alone and feeling pitiful. Danica Avet sent me an ARC of the latest book in her Veil series!  I started reading it, and so far I really am enjoying Izzy and Grant’s story in AIN’T NO BULL. It will be released (Siren Publishing) July 13th, and I definitely recommend it! Check Danica out at her website, or with her blog partners at http://FourFoxesOneHound.wordpress.com From what I understand, she just may have a few more copies to give away!

Anyway, Hubby’s back home and all is well with the world again. Went to bed last night and I think both of us were a little more snuggly than usual. I was about to drift off when he rumbled,complaining,  “Don’t know why they call it a sleep lab. Sure didn’t sleep much without you there.”

I just smiled in the dark when he gave me a squeeze. I relaxed for the first time in almost  forty-eight hours. I slung a leg over him, sighed, and thought, Yepall’s right with the world.

Visit Runere at www.RunereMcLain.com or as a friend on Facebook.  Follow her on Twitter@RunereMcLain

Real Life in Books

Hello everyone! So sorry I’ve been MIA lately. I’ve gotten extremely busy with edits and revising and finishing an old book. I finally broke down and started using the Google calendar so that it would send me emails the day before I have to do something, um, like blogging 🙂

Today I want to talk about real life. I write because I enjoy the break from reality (temporary of course!) and I like creating places, people, worlds and settings where readers can escape everyday life. Occasionally things from my everyday life show up in my books. Now at this you all are wondering just what I’m talking about since my books are erotic romance, well get your heads out of the gutters! It’s not THAT!! Nope, its everyday things.

For example this morning I had to be at the school by nine so I could register my son for pre-k. All I had to bring was his social security card and us. Got the us covered! Thought I had the ss card covered too. Until I opened the envelope to get it. The husband stroke!! He had to take the cards to work for insurance stuff about a week ago. Swears he brought them back. Then swears he didn’t even take them! Are you kidding me?? At this point I’m contemplating how horrible prison life would be. I mean seriously.

Things like this happen around my house all the time. I put things in a certain place. He moves them. I ask why and he explains (in a pissy voice!) that I had whatever it was just lying around the house where the kids could get it. He truly believes that by moving things around he’s helping. NO! That is so not how it works. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love him for trying to help me, but certain things aren’t helpable. If I have something put up for a reason, regardless of where it’s at, LEAVE IT THERE.

Things like this show up in my books all the time. I think little fights, frustrations, and in some cases yelling matches brings characters to life for readers. What do you think? I know in Untamable my latest release, that Siddalee and Jasper fight like the above. They bicker, they yell, they love. It’s life.

And we have guests coming to Tuesdays this month. Writer Marie Tuhart will be here next Tuesday and the following Tuesday debut author Cassandra Carr will be here. And let’s not forget that our lovely reader and friend Danica Avet has just released her second novel in The Veil Series!

For more on my newest release          and       for Danica’s new release            and Jillian’s release 

Release, Release, Release, and some Hotness from Joe Manganiello

Hello all!! WOW, today three of my author friends are having releases! For more information on these titles please click on the picture.

My critique partner and wonderfully talented writer, Rebecca Zanetti has her debut release by Kensington, FATED, out today.

Scientist and single mother Cara paulsen is used to fighting for what she wants and doing whatever it takes to protect her daughter, Janie. But ‘whatever it takes’ has never before included a shotgun wedding to a dangerous-looking stranger. Vampire leader Talen says that he’s there to protect Cara and Janie. But his idea of a wedding night is more like a sexual taming – dominant and scorching hot. With shapeshifting allies, they must fight against an evil race of vampires that has discovered a way to venture into sunlight, in order to safeguard Janie…and the rest of humanity.

 

Next on the release road is our very own southern sizzler, Jillian Chantal!! Her new story Surfer Bride hit the digital world with a bang.

Quincy Holt, a world champion surfer, was in love with a police officer, Fennimore Smith. He dumped her over a rumor that she cheated on him. Two years later, she’s moved on and is engaged to Percy Hicks, a British man that she believes could make her happy.

Quincy thinks her fiancé is an antiques dealer but he’s actually a firearms smuggler. A smuggler being investigated by her former lover, now an ATF agent. When Percy’s private plane full of weapons is confiscated while Quincy is aboard and she’s arrested for arms dealing, Fennimore Smith flies to Bali to rescue her and get her to testify against Percy. She turns him down as she has plans of her own. She sets off to London on a quest to trap her fiancé and bring him down. Will she survive her mission? Will her former lover have to rescue her again?

And last but not least we have fellow Gulf Coast Chapter of RWA member, Cynthia Eden soaring to the Best Sellers List with her newest release Deadly Lies.

She wants to hide the past…

FBI Special Agent Samantha Kennedy is haunted by memories of the serial killer who abducted her. To keep the darkness at bay, she pretends to be a different, more confident woman. This Samantha doesn’t fear every unknown face. So she throws caution to the wind and shares a night of unbridled passion with a handsome stranger.

He needs to uncover the truth

One night isn’t enough for successful entrepreneur Max Ridgeway. He wants more of the sexy, smart, mysterious woman who slipped away before dawn. When they meet again, their attraction is undeniable—until his stepbrother goes missing, and Max realizes that Samantha isn’t who she seems. But they must trust each other to trap a ring of blood-thirsty kidnappers before the nightmares that terrorize Sam become irrevocably real.

What a wonderful Tuesday! I mean, it just doesn’t get any better than having so many good books by talented writers come out on one day. Oh wait, I’m wrong. It does get better, my newest release Untamable releases tomorrow by Siren Publishing!!

Waking up tattooed, mated and a werewolf would shock most people but for Siddalee Brighton it’s just another day.

Siddalee has always held a burning hunger for her best friend, werewolf Jasper Gandillion. But she never realized what belonging to the animal within him would mean until he marks her in a show of passion and dominance, awakening the werewolf inside her. Siddalee was the first of many illegal breeding experiments that the Luna Werewolf Nation Alpha, Dane Velham, created and the only one strong enough to stop the monster from torturing other women and creating more experiments.

Will being the daughter of the monster who slaughtered Jasper’s pack destroy the love and lust between Siddalee and Jasper, or will they emerge as the new Alphas of the Luna Werewolf Nation?

So while I was writing this story I had different images of my hero Jasper floating around in my head. One actor stood out above anyone, Joe Manganiello!

 Need I say more? Why yes I do, here he is in a suit!

Release Date Anticipation

Hi all. As most of you know I have a new release coming up on the 23rd. I admit I wasn’t very excited when I received word that Siren wanted to publish it and that’s not because I wasn’t happy, I was. I’m a realist, and I know that with each book that I sell comes hard work in getting it edited to my editors standard and then promoting it. I always get a little freaked out when the cover comes because you just never know if the art department is going to have the same vision as you do. This time was no different and things did vary. Some parts of the cover were not what I’d envisioned but now that I’ve had the cover for a few weeks I do like the variation. I mean we can’t all think alike can we?

So after the edits were done, the cover arrived, and I received my final release date I realized that I’m finally excited. I know it seems so strange to most people thatI never get excited about a book contract or really a cover but that’s just how I am. When everything is said and done is when my excitement hits me. Now I’m really looking forward to having UNTAMABLE out in the publishing world.  I was recently asked what my favorite part of the publishing process was and well, you guessed it, the release date. That date means that everything I’ve worked so hard for is completed. Now, it’s time to share my work with the world and have faith that readers will enjoy the world I built.

When you’re working to accomplish your goal, what point to do begin to get excited about the end result? Are you like me and just can’t get excited until it’s absolutely complete or do you go through stages where you get excited?

And don’t forget that not only am I having a release date coming soon, but our sizzler SFCatty, Jillian Chantall and ym wonderful critique partner Rebecca Zanetti also have release dates on the 22nd! You can find out more about both Jillian and I at http://www.sirenbookstrand.com/ and for Rebecca please visit her website for all the places you can pick up FATED. http://rebeccazanetti.com Oh and you know what, our most beloved commentor Danica Avet has her latest release and upcoming release also at Siren so stop by and check us all out!

Wetsday Welcomes Danica . . . and her guests

As dear SFCatty/Jillian Chantal told y’all Saturday, the amazing world-wide acclaim for this blog started with one fan, who kept commenting and telling us she liked what we were doing. Danica Avet, a fairly sizzling Southern girl herself, will therefore always be one of our very favoritest people. And I get the honor of hosting her here today, on a major big red-letter day in her life: GROUNDHOG DAY!!!

No, just fooling around. We don’t care what Punxatawny Phil does with his shadow — here on the Gulf Coast, writers like Danica are keeping things nice and steamy. And since steamy is the operative word for Wetsday, here’s Danica:

I’m honored to return to Southern Sizzle Romance. I love these ladies and enjoy reading their posts. Well, okay, I’ll admit it. I stalked them for almost a year. But it’s their fault. No, it really is! If they weren’t so funny and interesting, I wouldn’t have felt compelled to read everything they posted.

However, they’ve graciously allowed me to return to Southern Sizzle for Wetsday. I do love Wetsday because I do love soaking wet men. *ponder* I’m trying to remember if there’s a shower scene in my book, but no, there isn’t. I rectified that in book 2 and 3 of the series. Alas, I can only imagine how my lovely hero would look with water cascading over his body.

*several minutes later*

Oh, sorry. Forgot I was typing something.

Now what to blog about? Oh, I know. I’m a nervous wreck. My first book, Ruby: Uncut and on the Loose, is being released today. When I started writing, I think I saw publication as something that would happen…I don’t know…maybe forty years from now? I’m glad it didn’t take that long, but still, I don’t think I was properly prepared for it.

When we start writing, we’re so focused on the excitement of creating and giving our characters a problem to solve, a love to find, that we (or at least I did) forget that there’s a purpose to writing. We write to be read. Right? Or that’s how it should be. Where’s the fun in writing just for your own amusement? Then when you get the call, or email, saying someone wants to put your book in front of the general public, you’re ecstatic. Yay! It’s finally happened! People are going to read your book! Wait…people are going to read. Your. Book! O.M.G.

I won’t go into the fits of nervousness and fear. Instead, I’ll concentrate on the changes that I’ve seen since finding out three of my books are being published. Er…okay, so Oprah still hasn’t called and neither has Jay Leno. I’m still driving my old car and living in the same house. I haven’t had to duck the paparazzi and no one’s asked for my autograph. Oh, wait, that isn’t true. People have asked for my book in print autographed by moi. *laughs hysterically* In fact, not much has changed and I’m so glad. There’s enough going on right now that I’m not sure I could handle more.

I haven’t changed either (okay, except for my hair color). I’m still the giggly, man-ogling woman who tells embarrassing stories about herself and her family and posts sexy men on Fridays. In fact…today is Wetsday, right? That means I get to put sexy men up! Woo-hoo!

So what do you think? Did I pick good Wetsday men?
Oh! I almost forgot! I’m giving a prize away. Leave a comment (about anything mentioned in the post) and you’ll be entered in a random drawing.

So, now that you see what a great writer and connoisseur of hot gentlemen our Danica is, you better jump on in and buy her booK:

Ruby Fontenot, a Cajun hermit, loses control of her life when she’s tapped to become the last Lineage Chieftain in a paranormal world she had no idea existed. With the power to change the face of The Veil by choosing its leaders, Ruby is now a wanted woman. Once she meets a member of the Veilerian High Council, what began as a fight for her life turns into a fight for her heart and her freedom.
As the High Council Representative, Lucian Ravenswaay has spent decades searching for the elusive Lineage Chieftain only to discover she’s his life mate. But this vampire has bigger plans than settling down; he wants a Council seat and to get it, he’ll have to turn Ruby over to them. The line between what he wants and what he needs is blurred and making the wrong choice could mean the destruction of an entire society.

Buy link: http://bookstrand.com/ruby-uncut-and-on-the-loose

Badurday-January 29, 2011- The Fabulous Danica Avet

EDITED ON JAN 31st TO ADD:  Winner of mask from Danica is Daisy Harris.  Congrats to Daisy!
 
JILLIAN:  Today we have a very special guest, Ms. Danica Avet. Danica was one of (Really, she was THE FIRST) our first readers here at this little ole blog.  She’s awesome and Sayde and I had a blast hanging out with her in Orlando at the RWA conference last July.  I’m so thriled for her that her first book comes out with Siren Publishers on February 2, 2011. This is book one in a series of three. 
I’m at the wedding of my husband’s great niece this weekend and won’t have much chance to get online so if you comment, it may not show up til the 30th. If not, don’t fret- we’ll leave open the comments til midnight on the 30th for a winner.  I’m also attaching Danica’s favorite bad boys here so if you want to know why she picked them, ask her in the comments!  So, with no further ado, welcome Danica.
 
DANICA:  Hey y’all!
 
I’m so thrilled Jillian invited me to visit because there’s nothing I love more than a bad boy. I love villains even more. I don’t want to sound like a twisted person, but villains are my favorite! They always have a clear goal in mind and know exactly what to do to get what they want. Unlike the hero or heroine, they’re generally not bothered by annoying things like honor or ethics. They do what they do because their goal is more important than anything else. Um, I’m not a villain, I swear. And I didn’t hold a knife on Jillian to get this guest blog post. Honest!
 
No, villains are generally uncomplicated. Some books show us villains where they reek of their evil. You can see it manifested in their looks, or their speech, or even the way they dress. Some authors change this around making the villain look just as innocent and normal as the secondary characters (those are generally my favorite kinds of villains). I’ve written three books in the Veil series and in each one, the villain is beautiful. Someone asked me why I made my villains so attractive and I suppose because evil can be beautiful.
 
Now you’re probably wondering “What the hell is she getting at?” Let me explain. In my soon-to-be released paranormal romance, Ruby: Uncut and on the Loose the hero hates this man I’m about to introduce you to. Not only the hero hates him, but everyone in the Veil hates him because of what he’s trying to do to their world. The Veil (for those of you who are wondering what that is), is a secret paranormal community that lives parallel to the human world. They don’t want to be found out by the humans, but there is a faction of the Veil that broke away called the Eturi who want to enslave the humans. They sound evil, don’t they?
 
Well, here’s a little snippet of the very first meeting between the heroine and the man who works for the Eturi:
 “That wasn’t quite the way I intended to introduce myself,” a wry voice said next to her.

It was the man who’d come up behind her at the hotel. Her Instinct had failed her again! Ruby jackknifed, about to take off running again but was stopped by a firm hand on her arm. She could have broken his hold, but she felt no panic, no shortness of breath, nothing warning her to run away. Confusion held her immobile.

“Shh,” the man said, his voice soothing, his warm brown eyes entreating her to relax. “I’m not going to hurt you. I was just going to introduce myself to you and hope I could talk with you without those beasts interfering.” He smiled somewhat sheepishly, showing off a dimple in his left cheek.

It was adorable. Ruby could feel herself gaping at him. She couldn’t help herself. He was…cute.

They were nearly the same height, which afforded her a perfect view of his face. He had dark brown, nearly black, hair cut close to his head in a rough, careless style that managed to look chic. His face was boyishly cute, from the slightly round nose and baby smooth cheeks to the big brown eyes and thick, long eyelashes most women would kill for. He was built on the lean side but had plenty of muscle on his body showing he either worked out or worked hard. Ruby bet he did both.

“What do you want?” she blurted out. No finesse. That was Ruby Fontenot. Blue, she amended. Ruby Fontenot-Blue.

Briggs sighed loudly and sat down, giving up the brave fight against gravity. The man looked at him and chuckled.

“You’re the last Chieftain,” he answered with his eyes still downcast. “You’re very valuable to this world. There are some who’d say you’re vital to their survival, and others who would say you’re valuable to their world.” His voice got deeper, and he finally looked up, his eyes glowing red. “But you’re more important to me.”

Of course, I haven’t shown the bad things he’s done (and he has done bad things). I chose this excerpt to illustrate how “evil” doesn’t have to wear a black hat or have a scarred face. I’m not saying whether this man is evil or not. I’m going to leave that for you to decide when you read my book 😉  Preorder it here: http://www.bookstrand.com/ruby-uncut-and-on-the-loose
 
So in honor of bad boys and villains, I’m going to chose a few of my favorite villains of all time! These are characters who are not only villains, but possible heroes as well. They have reasons for what they do, which is what makes them such rich characters.
 
GIVEAWAY QUESTION: Who is your favorite villain and why?

Reopening for The New Year

Ok, so I’m not reopening because I actually want to. Nope, I’m sick and I have a billion things I need to do here at my house. I’m reopening because I got my edits for my urban fantasy that I sold to Siren Publishing. It never fails to amaze me the things that editors catch or want to change. I’m a little scared this time because there are some things that my editor wants to change about “me” and I’m not totally on board yet. I just read through the suggestions and edits which means I’m still digesting.

This brings me to a point that I believe every writer, either beginner or best seller, should remember. No matter how many times you are published it never guarantees a sale with NO EDITS. Well, maybe if your Nora Roberts but I imagine even she gets edits from her editor. But honestly it never gets easier to see a manuscript that you’ve sold and you think the editor loves, come back to you with edits that make your ms look like a Christmas tree. And it also brings up another point, all publishing houses are different.

At one of my publishers(ok so I only have two but still I can say this now 🙂 ) I’m sent my ms back to fix any grammar errors. Once those are done I am sent plot problems. Once those are finished I’m sent a copy of it in publication form. That copy is one that I go through and make sure everything is exactly like I want it. Then once I send that back I’m done and we just wait for a publication date.

My new publisher sent me all of the above in one document! WOW, seriously different and today I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed. I had to laugh though as one of the comments that I read so far was that I should use more contractions 🙂 I think Jillian will get a huge kick out of that one! Besides that there are a lot of little stuff. Stuff that I am going, how the hell did these people read this and actually like it? And I got a comment that has me scratching my head and once the CP is not dizzy sick, Rebecca will be getting a headache from trying to figure it out too.

There you have it, I’m back open today and I’m a little freaked out. But hey, I’m lucky to be published and luckier to have another book on its way to publication so I’ll stop fussing.

And to follow a little of Danica Avet’s blog today I’d like to tell you all that I too am so very grateful of another year in the company of such outstanding writers and even better friends. Thank you to all my southern sizzle ladies, my terrific critique partner, Rebecca Zanetti, who is going to be busy busy this year with her own best-selling books as well as critiquing more of my junk, to all the ladies at Gulf Coast Chapter of RWA who inspire me to try writing in every genre out there in hopes that I can as good as they are, and to Danica Avet for being such a wonderful person who helped me at Nationals when things back home took a bad turn while I was gone  and also to my readers who have blessed me with sell after sell and I’m indebted to you all for your kindness. There are so many other people to thank for being there for me but I’ve rambled on and need to stop. Thank you all, and may your upcoming year be better and blessed 🙂

 And HAPPPY HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY to JILLIAN CHANTAL!!!

Thanks so much

Sayde Grace

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