giveaways

Belated Releases Giveaway!

I have two sweet friends who released books last week–and I completely missed their release days!

Life has gotten away from me, but I don’t want these great books to get away from you! So I’m celebrating these releases with a big giveaway! All you have to do is help us spread the word about these saucy new books and you could win 1 of 10 books or 1 of 5 gift cards!


The first new release I’d like to tell you about is one I’ve read myself. CAN’T GO WITHOUT by Angelisa Stone, is book two in her Oasis Waterfall series. This book is an emotionally riveting read. Angelisa creates characters to die for and a hero to drool over.

 

cgwCAN’T GO WITHOUT
“What’s the one thing you can’t go without?”

Tristan O’Donnell has money, women, and all the luxuries that cold hard cash can buy. Tristan’s been sucking sunshine right from the monogrammed silver spoon his life was served up on since the day he was born. And quite frankly, he wouldn’t want it any other way. He’s his mother’s pride and joy, his father’s right-hand-man, and the envy of every guy around. All Tristan has to do is flash his million dollar smile, give his trademark wink, and he gets what he wants, when he wants, anytime he wants.

Leah Franchetti grinds her fingers to the bone; sculpting, painting, recreating treasures from trash—the very sentiment that defines her life. Her inventive, vindictive, lucrative, and seemingly unforgivable plan allowed her to shortcut her way into the life she always imagined, owning an art gallery, surrounding herself in the comfort of her passion and dreams.

When circumstances force Leah and Tristan to come face-to-face with the past and with Leah’s devious manipulation, truths come flooding forth, destroying those in the present and possibly jeopardizing both of their highly anticipated futures. Can Tristan overcome Leah’s slander and deception—despite how dangerously close he comes to losing the one thing he can’t go without—money? Will Leah be forced to come clean, knowing she’ll have to live her life with the one thing she can’t go without—her dignity?

Pick up CAN’T GO WITHOUT at Amazon | Barnes & Noble

 


 

And the second release is CATCH ‘N’ KISS by Rhian Cahill. Are you game?

CatchNKiss300CATCH ‘N’ KISS

In this game of chase, a kiss isn’t the only reward.

Are You Game? Book 2

Divorced with two teenage daughters, Jody Walsh doesn’t need any more complications in her life, and Dan O’Conner is proving to be a big one. His pursuit may give her bruised ego a much-needed boost, but Jody’s learned to guard her heart and trust is something she isn’t willing to give another man no matter how well he kisses.

One kiss and Dan knows what he wants. He isn’t about to walk away from the kind of chemistry he and Jody have. Unfortunately, the more he chases the more she runs. If only he could get her running in his direction.

When a night of passion doesn’t convince her they’re meant to be, Dan is left with no choice but to prove he’s worth taking a risk on, no matter how much he complicates her life.

Warning: Story contains a woman not willing to put her heart at risk and a man determined to persuade her otherwise—and he’s willing to use his washing machine to show her why he’s worth it.

Pick up CATCH ‘N’ KISS at Amazon | Barnes & Noble

 


 Now…Enter to WIN book 1 in these two series’ or 1 of 5 gift cards! Easy entry!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Interview & Giveaway with Lori Wilde

>Update 11/16/11 7:07am: I will include all entries received until I get around to choosing a winner this morning **G** Thanks for coming by!!

Today’s guest is New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Lori Wilde. She has sold 64 novels and novellas to four major New York Publishing houses.

Her new release The Christmas Cookie Chronicles: Carrie: A Twilight, Texas Story releases tomorrow, November 15th. We’ve got giveaways — and I’m trying out Rafflecopter, so let me know what you think!

Come join a meeting of the First Love Cookie Club!

“On Christmas Eve, if you sleep with kismet cookies under your pillow and dream of your own true love, he will be your destiny.”

Carrie MacGregor doesn’t believe this—not one bit. She might be a “paid up” member of the Cookie Club and the local Sweethearts Knitting Club, but she’s not about to give in to the forced ho-ho-ho of the season. And why?

Mark Leland. When he left town he broke Carrie’s heart. Now, the local-guy-made good is back, hosting the reality show “Fact or Fantasy.”

Fact: Mark broke her heart. Fantasy: her friends think they’ll be getting back together. But could the magic of a Twilight, Texas Christmas make Carrie’s secret dreams come true?

Get your copy at Amazon or Barnes and Noble

Lori, tell us about your upcoming release.
I’m very excited about these three Christmas ebooks that continue to follow the adventures of the club members from my Twilight, Texas series. Book one is about Flynn MacGregor’s sister, Carrie, who’s fully coming into her own as a woman, when the handsome man she impulsively married in Vegas when she was seventeen comes back to town determined to debunk the Sweethearts myth.

What’s your favorite thing about the book featured here today?
Getting to revisit characters I’ve known and loved right along with my readers.

What sparked the idea for this book/series?
The huge success of my Twilight, Texas series. I’d left a lot of loose ends dangling and these ebooks were a way for readers to find out what happened to all those secondary characters when they get books of their own.

What creates the biggest conflict between your hero and heroine?
The hero a reality TV host come back to town to debunk the romantic myth that brings tourists flooding into Twilight. If he debunks the myth, it not only threatens the town, but his happily-ever-after with Carrie.

Why did you put these two together?
I wanted to explore the dynamics of a hero who made a huge success paired with the woman he left behind in order to achieve that success.

What is your strategy in creating villains?
The villain in this book is the hero’s boss. She’s in the story to put pressure on him to chose his fast lane lifestyle over his hometown and high school sweetheart.

What was the hardest part of this book to write and why?
The hardest part is juggling my schedule. I teach writing, am going to school for my Masters degree and I write five books a year.

Tell us something unusual about rhe creation of this book.
To research the hero’s career, I had to watch a lot of reality T.V.

What do you love most about this book/series?

Getting to revisit the characters and town. I really love Twilight, which is based on a real town where I once lived.

Is there a message in this novel that you want readers to grasp?

That dreams can come true if you just dare to believe!

Does your novel have a theme? How did that come about?
All my novels have themes. I consider the theme before I ever write the book. The theme guides ever aspect of my writing from character development, to plot, to the choice of clothing the characters wear. I believe theme is one of the most important elements of any good story.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Stephen King

Who or what has influenced your writing, and in what way?
My father. Before he retired he was a teacher, journalist and songwriter. He gave me Dwight Swain’s book, Techniques of the Selling Writer when I was thirteen. He’s my real mentor.

How does your family view your writing career?
They’re very proud and supportive. I couldn’t ask for a more supportive family. I’m blessed.

What entity do you feel supports you most in your writing career outside of family members?
RWA.

What is your writing routine?
It’s crazy and follows no set pattern. If I’m on deadline I’ll write 60-80 hours a week or more. So I’m writing from the time I get up, to the time I go to bed. If I’m not on a tight deadline (which is rare), I’ll get up and write for three to four hours in the morning and then take the rest of the day off.

How do you keep in touch with your readers?
FB, Twitter, Blog, email, snail mail, newsletters.

What are you reading now?
I usually read three or four books at once. I’m reading a book on health, a book on psychology, a book on writing and the ARC of Piper Maitland’s Acquainted with the Night. It’s an awesome book!

What is in your TBR pile?
Um, do you have all day? I have a TBR that stretches to the ceiling.

What would you like to tell readers?
Keep reading! Authors wouldn’t exist without you. Thank you, thank you. I am so grateful for readers.

What is your preferred genre to read for pleasure?
Historical fiction.

Do you have a second career? 
I’m a writing teacher and now, an editor for Entangled Books.

What did you do before you became a full-time writer?
I was a registered nurse for 20 years.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?
Emotion, emotion, emotion, emotion. And a compelling voice.

What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you started writing?
How extremely difficult it is. I would have worked harder much sooner.

How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?
The plot springs from character. Fully develop your characters and you’ll know your plot. I use the Enneagram to create compelling characters.

What tools do you feel are must-haves for writers?
Persistence, determination, stubbornness.

How would you best describe your books?
Heartfelt.

What would you write if you could do write anything you wanted to write?

Honestly, I can’t answer that. I write what I know will sell. I make a living doing this. I can’t afford to indulge my whims. This is a career for me. I love storytelling, but I want to write what readers want to read.

What do you most like about writing? Least like?
Everything. I live and breathe it. I love how hard it is. What I like least? The fickleness of the publishing business.

Which is your favorite of the books you have written?
They’re all special in their own way.

What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?
Hitting the NYT and USA Today list. It only took 20 years.

What would you say is your biggest writing quirk?
Hmm, not sure what this means. Probably my intensity. I’m pretty single-minded about writing. I truly eat, breathe and sleep it.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Watch movies. Knit. Play angry birds. Travel.

What are your current projects?
I’m currently writing a new three book series for Blaze. I’ve also got a new series coming up with Avon next year about cutting horse cowboys.

Where can we find you online?
www.loriwilde.com

Do You Have Any Undiscovered Or Hidden Talents? If So, What?
I can tie a cherry stem with my tongue.

Are You The Same Person You Were As A Child, Or Much Different?
Much different! I’ve was extremely shy to the point of pathology. I knew I had to overcome that if I wanted to be a writer. Yes, writers need to be extroverted at times. So bit by bit, I learned to put myself out there. Now, I have so much fun, I’d never go back to being shy.

Do You Believe That The Cup Is Half Empty Or Half Full?
Half-full.

Favorite Midnight Snack?
I recently got healthy, so that’s changed. Once upon a time it would have been chocolate chip cookies. Now it’s spaghetti squash with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. I feel so much better now!

Are You An Introvert Or An Extrovert?
I’m still an introvert, but I have to get out every two-three months or I go stir-crazy.

Are You A Window Person Or An Aisle Person?
Aisle! Don’t hem me in.

Do You Like Short Or Long Hair On A Guy?
Short.

Ever Hit A Jackpot On A Slot Machine?
Nope. I don’t play slots.

How many pillows do you like to sleep with?
Two since I tore my rotator cuff.

Do you believe in snipes?
Nope.

Which do you like more—rainy days or snowy days?
It rarely snows in my neck of the woods, so snow.

What is Your Favorite Beverage?
Iced tea.

Do You Have A Recurring Dream? What Happens In It?
It’s the unprepared dream. I’m back in nursing, the shift is over and I haven’t done a thing.

Are You Usually Late, Early Or Right On Time?
I am usually right on time; but I’m married to guy who runs late. It drives me crazy when he makes me late.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Lori Wilde has sold 64 novels and novellas to four major New York Publishing houses. She holds a bachelors degree in nursing from Texas Christian University and a certificate in forensics. She has also served as the RWA National conference workshop chair and PAN retreat chair. In 2007 she was honored by her local college as alumna of the year.

Lori is a past RITA finalist and has four times been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. She’s won the Colorado Award of Excellence, the Wisconsin Write Touch Award, The Lories, The More Than Maggie, the Golden Quill, The Laurel Wreath and The BestBooks of 2006 Book Award.

Her books have been translated into 22 languages and excerpted in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Complete Woman, All You and Quick and Simple magazines. She lives in Texas with her husband Bill.



>Interview & Giveaway with Lori Wilde

>Update 11/16/11 7:07am: I will include all entries received until I get around to choosing a winner this morning **G** Thanks for coming by!!

Today’s guest is New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Lori Wilde. She has sold 64 novels and novellas to four major New York Publishing houses.

Her new release The Christmas Cookie Chronicles: Carrie: A Twilight, Texas Story releases tomorrow, November 15th. We’ve got giveaways — and I’m trying out Rafflecopter, so let me know what you think!

Come join a meeting of the First Love Cookie Club!

“On Christmas Eve, if you sleep with kismet cookies under your pillow and dream of your own true love, he will be your destiny.”

Carrie MacGregor doesn’t believe this—not one bit. She might be a “paid up” member of the Cookie Club and the local Sweethearts Knitting Club, but she’s not about to give in to the forced ho-ho-ho of the season. And why?

Mark Leland. When he left town he broke Carrie’s heart. Now, the local-guy-made good is back, hosting the reality show “Fact or Fantasy.”

Fact: Mark broke her heart. Fantasy: her friends think they’ll be getting back together. But could the magic of a Twilight, Texas Christmas make Carrie’s secret dreams come true?

Get your copy at Amazon or Barnes and Noble

Lori, tell us about your upcoming release.
I’m very excited about these three Christmas ebooks that continue to follow the adventures of the club members from my Twilight, Texas series. Book one is about Flynn MacGregor’s sister, Carrie, who’s fully coming into her own as a woman, when the handsome man she impulsively married in Vegas when she was seventeen comes back to town determined to debunk the Sweethearts myth.

What’s your favorite thing about the book featured here today?
Getting to revisit characters I’ve known and loved right along with my readers.

What sparked the idea for this book/series?
The huge success of my Twilight, Texas series. I’d left a lot of loose ends dangling and these ebooks were a way for readers to find out what happened to all those secondary characters when they get books of their own.

What creates the biggest conflict between your hero and heroine?
The hero a reality TV host come back to town to debunk the romantic myth that brings tourists flooding into Twilight. If he debunks the myth, it not only threatens the town, but his happily-ever-after with Carrie.

Why did you put these two together?
I wanted to explore the dynamics of a hero who made a huge success paired with the woman he left behind in order to achieve that success.

What is your strategy in creating villains?
The villain in this book is the hero’s boss. She’s in the story to put pressure on him to chose his fast lane lifestyle over his hometown and high school sweetheart.

What was the hardest part of this book to write and why?
The hardest part is juggling my schedule. I teach writing, am going to school for my Masters degree and I write five books a year.

Tell us something unusual about rhe creation of this book.
To research the hero’s career, I had to watch a lot of reality T.V.

What do you love most about this book/series?

Getting to revisit the characters and town. I really love Twilight, which is based on a real town where I once lived.

Is there a message in this novel that you want readers to grasp?

That dreams can come true if you just dare to believe!

Does your novel have a theme? How did that come about?
All my novels have themes. I consider the theme before I ever write the book. The theme guides ever aspect of my writing from character development, to plot, to the choice of clothing the characters wear. I believe theme is one of the most important elements of any good story.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Stephen King

Who or what has influenced your writing, and in what way?
My father. Before he retired he was a teacher, journalist and songwriter. He gave me Dwight Swain’s book, Techniques of the Selling Writer when I was thirteen. He’s my real mentor.

How does your family view your writing career?
They’re very proud and supportive. I couldn’t ask for a more supportive family. I’m blessed.

What entity do you feel supports you most in your writing career outside of family members?
RWA.

What is your writing routine?
It’s crazy and follows no set pattern. If I’m on deadline I’ll write 60-80 hours a week or more. So I’m writing from the time I get up, to the time I go to bed. If I’m not on a tight deadline (which is rare), I’ll get up and write for three to four hours in the morning and then take the rest of the day off.

How do you keep in touch with your readers?
FB, Twitter, Blog, email, snail mail, newsletters.

What are you reading now?
I usually read three or four books at once. I’m reading a book on health, a book on psychology, a book on writing and the ARC of Piper Maitland’s Acquainted with the Night. It’s an awesome book!

What is in your TBR pile?
Um, do you have all day? I have a TBR that stretches to the ceiling.

What would you like to tell readers?
Keep reading! Authors wouldn’t exist without you. Thank you, thank you. I am so grateful for readers.

What is your preferred genre to read for pleasure?
Historical fiction.

Do you have a second career? 
I’m a writing teacher and now, an editor for Entangled Books.

What did you do before you became a full-time writer?
I was a registered nurse for 20 years.

What, in your opinion, are the most important elements of good writing?
Emotion, emotion, emotion, emotion. And a compelling voice.

What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you started writing?
How extremely difficult it is. I would have worked harder much sooner.

How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?
The plot springs from character. Fully develop your characters and you’ll know your plot. I use the Enneagram to create compelling characters.

What tools do you feel are must-haves for writers?
Persistence, determination, stubbornness.

How would you best describe your books?
Heartfelt.

What would you write if you could do write anything you wanted to write?

Honestly, I can’t answer that. I write what I know will sell. I make a living doing this. I can’t afford to indulge my whims. This is a career for me. I love storytelling, but I want to write what readers want to read.

What do you most like about writing? Least like?
Everything. I live and breathe it. I love how hard it is. What I like least? The fickleness of the publishing business.

Which is your favorite of the books you have written?
They’re all special in their own way.

What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?
Hitting the NYT and USA Today list. It only took 20 years.

What would you say is your biggest writing quirk?
Hmm, not sure what this means. Probably my intensity. I’m pretty single-minded about writing. I truly eat, breathe and sleep it.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Watch movies. Knit. Play angry birds. Travel.

What are your current projects?
I’m currently writing a new three book series for Blaze. I’ve also got a new series coming up with Avon next year about cutting horse cowboys.

Where can we find you online?
www.loriwilde.com

Do You Have Any Undiscovered Or Hidden Talents? If So, What?
I can tie a cherry stem with my tongue.

Are You The Same Person You Were As A Child, Or Much Different?
Much different! I’ve was extremely shy to the point of pathology. I knew I had to overcome that if I wanted to be a writer. Yes, writers need to be extroverted at times. So bit by bit, I learned to put myself out there. Now, I have so much fun, I’d never go back to being shy.

Do You Believe That The Cup Is Half Empty Or Half Full?
Half-full.

Favorite Midnight Snack?
I recently got healthy, so that’s changed. Once upon a time it would have been chocolate chip cookies. Now it’s spaghetti squash with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. I feel so much better now!

Are You An Introvert Or An Extrovert?
I’m still an introvert, but I have to get out every two-three months or I go stir-crazy.

Are You A Window Person Or An Aisle Person?
Aisle! Don’t hem me in.

Do You Like Short Or Long Hair On A Guy?
Short.

Ever Hit A Jackpot On A Slot Machine?
Nope. I don’t play slots.

How many pillows do you like to sleep with?
Two since I tore my rotator cuff.

Do you believe in snipes?
Nope.

Which do you like more—rainy days or snowy days?
It rarely snows in my neck of the woods, so snow.

What is Your Favorite Beverage?
Iced tea.

Do You Have A Recurring Dream? What Happens In It?
It’s the unprepared dream. I’m back in nursing, the shift is over and I haven’t done a thing.

Are You Usually Late, Early Or Right On Time?
I am usually right on time; but I’m married to guy who runs late. It drives me crazy when he makes me late.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Lori Wilde has sold 64 novels and novellas to four major New York Publishing houses. She holds a bachelors degree in nursing from Texas Christian University and a certificate in forensics. She has also served as the RWA National conference workshop chair and PAN retreat chair. In 2007 she was honored by her local college as alumna of the year.

Lori is a past RITA finalist and has four times been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. She’s won the Colorado Award of Excellence, the Wisconsin Write Touch Award, The Lories, The More Than Maggie, the Golden Quill, The Laurel Wreath and The BestBooks of 2006 Book Award.

Her books have been translated into 22 languages and excerpted in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Complete Woman, All You and Quick and Simple magazines. She lives in Texas with her husband Bill.



Interview, Excerpt & Giveaway with Catherine Ryan Hyde!!

>

I have a very special guest today–Catherine Ryan Hyde, multiple award-winning, bestselling author of 18 novels in mainstream fiction and young adult fiction. You may know her best from the book-turned-movie Pay It Foward. Since the blockbuster hit, she’s gone on to publish 12 more successful novels.  

She is giving away 3 copies of DON’T LET ME GO along with 3 custom handmade bookmarks pictured below today! Simply leave a comment or questions to enter.

Catherine and I live in the same area of California and met about a decade ago when Catherine gave a small, private course on writing. I don’t remember how I found the class and I didn’t know who Catherine was at the time, but it must have been fate, because Catherine gave me my first solid footing in writing fiction, a footing that has everything to do with how far I’ve come.

Catherine taught me how to write a query letter and synopsis and went on to show me how to immediately grab a reader and then hold their attention through the pages, and even after trying various other styles, I always came back to Catherine’s teachings because they were solid, smart and savvy.  Catherine’s instruction along with her industry knowledge was the foundation for the connection I made with my current agent and my first sale to an editor.

Moving forward, Catherine continued to inspire authors with occasional courses on craft-related topics and a “support-group” of sorts where authors from the area would get together and share their recent accomplishments or disappointments and talk over industry topics or problems. While I was in her class and mentioned my then-6th grader’s love of reading, Catherine arranged a visit to her class at the local elementary school to discuss writing. She has always been endlessly generous with her time, knowledge and experience.

Her writing is both poignant and breathtakingly real, her characters starkly realistic, her conflict biting and complex. I am particularly awed by her stellar craft in all aspects of storytelling and prose. If you haven’t read Catherine’s work, you haven’t witnessed raw, emotional storytelling at its finest.

I can’t say I’ve ever had someone I’ve considered a hero, nor have I ever admired any particular societal icon, but when it comes to writing, I’d definitely consider Catherine Ryan Hyde my mentor. And I’m thrilled to have her here today.

She releases her latest novel, DON’T LET ME GO today!  

GRACE
Ten year old Grace knows that her mum loves her, but her mum loves drugs too. There’s only so long Grace can fend off the ‘woman from the country’ who is threatening to put her into care.  Her only hope is…

BILLY
Grown-man Billy Shine hasn’t left his apartment in years. People scare him. And so day in, day out, he lives a perfectly orchestrated, silent life within his four walls. Until…

THE PLAN
Grace bursts into Billy’s life with a loud voice and a plan to get her mum clean. But it won’t be easy. Because they have to take away the one thing her mum needs most…Grace.

Catherine, tell us about your upcoming release, DON’T LET ME GO.

Don’t Let Me Go is the story of Grace, a 10-year-old girl whose mother has fallen deeply into drug addiction. Grace is almost entirely unsupervised when we meet her. She lives in a run-down, six-unit apartment house in a bad section of L.A., and she’s about to end up in the foster care system. Except one of her five neighbors, Rayleen, had some bad experiences in foster care. And she makes up her mind that Grace is not going there. And she pulls everyone else in the apartment house together to make sure nothing bad happens to the girl. And these are not the kind of people who would otherwise have been pulled together. They’re the kind of people who seem destined to live their lives apart. Even Billy gets involved, the neighbor no one besides grace has ever met, or even seen. Because he doesn’t go outside. And he doesn’t talk to people. And he doesn’t have a life, because he’s afraid of life. But Grace gets in where no one else can. And these five really disparate people team up to save Grace, but Grace saves them. Even though they didn’t exactly know they needed saving. But, looking back, it seems pretty clear.

What creates the biggest conflict between your hero and heroine?

I love this question, because I get to make a hero and a heroine out of a 10-year old girl and an agoraphobic ex Broadway dancer. But that’s Grace and Billy.

The biggest conflict between them comes in the form of Billy’s neuroses. Grace wants—needs—him to do these things that seem so basic to her. Like go outside. And much as she loves him, it’s hard for her to be patient with his shortcomings. But in time she learns to accept him more or less the way he is, though she never pulls any punches about the fact that she finds him weird. Well, most people would find him weird. But Grace doesn’t really mean it as an insult, which is why it works.

Why did you put these two together?

I just love exploring this oddball type of relationship. I love bonds between characters who become family even when they’re not related by blood. I love it even more when they’re not related by much of anything.

I like to explore non-sexual bonds, because they tend to be far quirkier. We know why people are drawn together if the people are two consenting adults. It’s a pull we all understand. But what forms a bond between two people like Billy and Grace? As a novelist, questions like that one give me a lot to explore.

Is there a message in this novel that you want readers to grasp?

The obvious novel (Pay It Forward) aside, I really try not to have any particularly overt messages in my work. I don’t want to be too didactic or appear to preach. I think it’s the novelist’s job to entertain, rather than teach. But, now, here’s the catch. I think it’s great when the reader learns something about the human condition from one of my novels. But I don’t want to be seen as teaching.

An old writing mentor of mine once said (regarding flashbacks, which many feel are to be avoided), “If you have to use a flashback, by all means do so, but don’t get caught.” I think that’s the point I’m trying to make about message. I want the reader to feel they discovered something in my books, not that I tried to force-feed it.

That said…I think the point I was trying to make in Don’t Let Me Go is that fear keeps us alone. But we need each other. It’s so easy to avoid each other, because it’s so complicated to deal with people. So fraught with emotional and logistical landmines. But what we lose in being alone is so much greater than the trouble we avoid. It’s the kind of lesson that could go right over the head of a grownup, while a 10-year-old kid could grasp it easily.

How do you keep in touch with your readers?

Any way I can. Any way they want me to. I have my email address on my website. And it’s my actual address. The mail comes to me, and only to me. I don’t have an assistant weeding these out for me. I just like to hear from readers. So I correspond with readers fairly regularly by email. And of course there’s Twitter and Facebook, and that’s another way readers and I can interact.

What are you reading now?

Second Nature by Jacqueline Mitchard.

What would you like to tell readers?

That it’s not a line when I say I like to hear from readers. I really do. It makes this a far less solitary profession. I love to hear what readers did and did not like about the books. I love it when people tell me favorite lines. I love it even more when they tell me about their own life experience as it relates to what they read. It means a great deal when relative strangers give me pieces of themselves like that. It has value.

I also want to tell readers to never judge a book by its movie.

Where can we find you online?

My website: www.catherineryanhyde.com
My blog: http://www.catherineryanhyde.com/blog/
Facebook profile: https://www.facebook.com/crhyde
Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Catherine-Ryan-Hyde/55974126195
Twitter: http://twitter.com/cryanhyde

I could go on, but…I’m guessing, armed with that, you’ll find me.

Here’s an excerpt from DON’T LET ME GO:

“Who brought you home from school?” he asked Grace.

            He sat perched on the very edge of his sofa, watching her look around his apartment.  Watching her peer at all of his photos again, as if she hadn’t just examined them the previous day.

            He couldn’t focus away from his lack of sleep.  It left his nerves raw, and feeling as though they’d been recently sandpapered.

            “Felipe did,” she said.  “That way Yolanda wouldn’t have to take off from work.  Because they don’t pay Yolanda when she takes off from work.  She can take off.  But then she just loses the money.”

            “And Yolanda is…”

            “My mom’s sponsor.”

            “Sponsor?  What kind of sponsor?  What does she sponsor her to do?”

            “In the program.  You know.  Like an AA sponsor, except Yolanda is NA.”

            “Oh, good lord, that explains a lot,” Billy said, wishing after the fact he hadn’t said it out loud.

            “What does it explain?”

            “Forget I mentioned it.  That’s me in an Equity waver production of The Iceman Cometh.”

            “I understood the picture better before you told me that.”

            “So how did Jake Lafferty find out I was going to be taking care of you?”

            “Oh, that’s easy.  Rayleen had to go talk to him.  Because Felipe didn’t want to come pick me up at school, because he figured Mr. Lafferty would give him a hard time about it.  So Rayleen had to go talk to Mr. Lafferty, and I had to go, because otherwise I would have been alone with just my mom, who was asleep, and then if the county came to check on me, that would be bad.  So I went along.  And, wow, he was really mad.  But Rayleen didn’t act like she was one bit scared of him.  She just told him Felipe was gonna pick me up from school, and he better just stay out of it.  He didn’t like it much, but he just sort of said, ‘Why should I care?  Do whatever you want.’  But then he wanted to know where I’d be after Felipe went to work, which seemed weird to me, because, a minute before that, he’d just said he didn’t care.  I told him a lot about you.”

            “Oh.  OK.  That explains a lot.”

            “You say that a bunch, did you know that?  What does it explain?”

“It explains why he came down here and asked personal questions.”

“What kind of personal questions?”

“Well…how can I tell you…if they’re personal?”

“Right,” Grace said.  “Duh.  Sorry.”  

“What did you tell him about me?”

            “That you used to be a dancer and an actor and a singer…”

            That explains a lot, Billy thought, but he kept it to himself.

            “…and that your name was Billy Shine, but that your first name used to be Rodney or Dennis or something…”

            “Donald.  Actually.”

            “Oh,  Right.  Donald.  Sorry.  And I told him your last name used to be Fleinsteen, but you changed it to Shine, because Fleinsteen wasn’t a dancer’s name.”

            “Feldman,” Billy said, suddenly even more tired.

             “Oh.  Feldman.  Where did I get Fleinsteen?”

            “I wouldn’t venture to guess.”

            “There you go talking weird again.  I guess I told him wrong.  What’s this one?  Is this you dancing?”

            She held up a framed photo that had been sitting on the end table near the couch.  It was indeed a photo of Billy dancing.

            “Yes.  In fact, it’s me dancing on Broadway.”

            “What’s Broadway?”

            “It’s a street.  In New York.”

            “It doesn’t look like a street.  It looks like you’re dancing inside.”

            “Right.  In a theater.  On Broadway.”

“Oh.  Is that good?”
“That’s about as good as it gets.”

“Too bad you don’t do this anymore.  I mean, since you loved it so much.”

“Well, look at it this way, Grace.  If I were still dancing, I’d be on Broadway right

now, and then who would look after you?”

            “True.  But that’s another thing I was thinking we could talk about, because if you were still a dancer—”

            “Maybe we should play the quiet game,” Billy interjected.

            “What’s the quiet game?”

            “You know.  The one where we try to see who can go the longest without talking.”

            “Ugh,” Grace said, putting the Broadway photo back in the right place, but at the wrong angle.  “Sounds really boring.”

            “I’m just so tired, though,” Billy said, leaning over and fixing the angle of the Broadway photo.  “I didn’t sleep last night.  I’m just not sure how much more energy I have for talking.”

            Grace appeared suddenly in front of him, bouncing up and down on her toes, her hands on his knees.

“Will you teach me to dance?”
“That takes energy, too.”

Please, Billy?  Please, please, please?  Please, please, please?  Pleeeeease?”

Billy sighed deeply.  Wearily. 

“OK,” he said.  “I guess it takes less energy than listening to that.”






Don’t forget to leave a comment or ask a question to enter to win:
1 of 3 copies of DON’T LET ME GO
Each with a custom bookmark
*MUST* leave contact email to WIN!
Catherine Ryan Hyde is the author of 18 published and forthcoming books.

Her newest releases are Jumpstart the World (Knopf, Fall 2010) and Second Hand Heart (Transworld UK, Fall 2010). Forthcoming is Don’t Let Me Go (Transworld UK, Spring 2011) and When You Were Older (Transworld UK, Fall 2011).

Newer novels are Becoming Chloe (Knopf, 2006), Love in the Present Tense (Doubleday, 2006), The Year of My Miraculous Reappearance (Knopf, 2007), Chasing Windmills (Doubleday, 2008), The Day I Killed James (Knopf, 2008), Diary of a Witness (Knopf, 2009), and When I Found You (Transworld UK, 2009).

Both Becoming Chloe and Jumpstart the World were included on the ALA’s Rainbow List. Jumpstart the World was chosen as a finalist for two Lambda Literary Awards. Love in the Present Tense enjoyed bestseller status in the UK, where it broke the top ten, spent five weeks on the national bestseller list, was reviewed on a major TV book club, and shortlisted for a Best Read of the Year award at the British Book Awards.

Older works include the story collection Earthquake Weather, and the novels Funerals for Horses, Pay it Forward, Electric God, and Walter’s Purple Heart.

Pay It Forward was adapted into a major motion picture, chosen by the American Library Association for its Best Books for Young Adults list, and translated into more than 23 languages for distribution in over 30 countries. The mass market paperback was released in October 2000 by Pocket Books and quickly became a national bestseller. It is still in print, and was rereleased in a trade paperback edition in April of 2010.

More than 50 of her short stories have been published in The Antioch Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Ploughshares, Glimmer Train, The Sun and many other journals, and in the anthologies Santa Barbara Stories and California Shorts and the bestselling anthology Dog is my Co-Pilot. Her stories have been honored in the Raymond Carver Short Story Contest and the Tobias Wolff Award and nominated for Best American Short Stories, the O’Henry Award, and the Pushcart Prize. Three have been cited in Best American Short Stories.

She is founder and former president (2000-2009) of the Pay It Forward Foundation. As a professional public speaker she has addressed the National Conference on Education, twice spoken at Cornell University, met with Americorps members at the White House and shared a dais with Bill Clinton.

>Interview, Excerpt & Giveaway with Catherine Ryan Hyde!!

>

I have a very special guest today–Catherine Ryan Hyde, multiple award-winning, bestselling author of 18 novels in mainstream fiction and young adult fiction. You may know her best from the book-turned-movie Pay It Foward. Since the blockbuster hit, she’s gone on to publish 12 more successful novels.  

She is giving away 3 copies of DON’T LET ME GO along with 3 custom handmade bookmarks pictured below today! Simply leave a comment or questions to enter.

Catherine and I live in the same area of California and met about a decade ago when Catherine gave a small, private course on writing. I don’t remember how I found the class and I didn’t know who Catherine was at the time, but it must have been fate, because Catherine gave me my first solid footing in writing fiction, a footing that has everything to do with how far I’ve come.

Catherine taught me how to write a query letter and synopsis and went on to show me how to immediately grab a reader and then hold their attention through the pages, and even after trying various other styles, I always came back to Catherine’s teachings because they were solid, smart and savvy.  Catherine’s instruction along with her industry knowledge was the foundation for the connection I made with my current agent and my first sale to an editor.

Moving forward, Catherine continued to inspire authors with occasional courses on craft-related topics and a “support-group” of sorts where authors from the area would get together and share their recent accomplishments or disappointments and talk over industry topics or problems. While I was in her class and mentioned my then-6th grader’s love of reading, Catherine arranged a visit to her class at the local elementary school to discuss writing. She has always been endlessly generous with her time, knowledge and experience.

Her writing is both poignant and breathtakingly real, her characters starkly realistic, her conflict biting and complex. I am particularly awed by her stellar craft in all aspects of storytelling and prose. If you haven’t read Catherine’s work, you haven’t witnessed raw, emotional storytelling at its finest.

I can’t say I’ve ever had someone I’ve considered a hero, nor have I ever admired any particular societal icon, but when it comes to writing, I’d definitely consider Catherine Ryan Hyde my mentor. And I’m thrilled to have her here today.

She releases her latest novel, DON’T LET ME GO today!  

GRACE
Ten year old Grace knows that her mum loves her, but her mum loves drugs too. There’s only so long Grace can fend off the ‘woman from the country’ who is threatening to put her into care.  Her only hope is…

BILLY
Grown-man Billy Shine hasn’t left his apartment in years. People scare him. And so day in, day out, he lives a perfectly orchestrated, silent life within his four walls. Until…

THE PLAN
Grace bursts into Billy’s life with a loud voice and a plan to get her mum clean. But it won’t be easy. Because they have to take away the one thing her mum needs most…Grace.

Catherine, tell us about your upcoming release, DON’T LET ME GO.

Don’t Let Me Go is the story of Grace, a 10-year-old girl whose mother has fallen deeply into drug addiction. Grace is almost entirely unsupervised when we meet her. She lives in a run-down, six-unit apartment house in a bad section of L.A., and she’s about to end up in the foster care system. Except one of her five neighbors, Rayleen, had some bad experiences in foster care. And she makes up her mind that Grace is not going there. And she pulls everyone else in the apartment house together to make sure nothing bad happens to the girl. And these are not the kind of people who would otherwise have been pulled together. They’re the kind of people who seem destined to live their lives apart. Even Billy gets involved, the neighbor no one besides grace has ever met, or even seen. Because he doesn’t go outside. And he doesn’t talk to people. And he doesn’t have a life, because he’s afraid of life. But Grace gets in where no one else can. And these five really disparate people team up to save Grace, but Grace saves them. Even though they didn’t exactly know they needed saving. But, looking back, it seems pretty clear.

What creates the biggest conflict between your hero and heroine?

I love this question, because I get to make a hero and a heroine out of a 10-year old girl and an agoraphobic ex Broadway dancer. But that’s Grace and Billy.

The biggest conflict between them comes in the form of Billy’s neuroses. Grace wants—needs—him to do these things that seem so basic to her. Like go outside. And much as she loves him, it’s hard for her to be patient with his shortcomings. But in time she learns to accept him more or less the way he is, though she never pulls any punches about the fact that she finds him weird. Well, most people would find him weird. But Grace doesn’t really mean it as an insult, which is why it works.

Why did you put these two together?

I just love exploring this oddball type of relationship. I love bonds between characters who become family even when they’re not related by blood. I love it even more when they’re not related by much of anything.

I like to explore non-sexual bonds, because they tend to be far quirkier. We know why people are drawn together if the people are two consenting adults. It’s a pull we all understand. But what forms a bond between two people like Billy and Grace? As a novelist, questions like that one give me a lot to explore.

Is there a message in this novel that you want readers to grasp?

The obvious novel (Pay It Forward) aside, I really try not to have any particularly overt messages in my work. I don’t want to be too didactic or appear to preach. I think it’s the novelist’s job to entertain, rather than teach. But, now, here’s the catch. I think it’s great when the reader learns something about the human condition from one of my novels. But I don’t want to be seen as teaching.

An old writing mentor of mine once said (regarding flashbacks, which many feel are to be avoided), “If you have to use a flashback, by all means do so, but don’t get caught.” I think that’s the point I’m trying to make about message. I want the reader to feel they discovered something in my books, not that I tried to force-feed it.

That said…I think the point I was trying to make in Don’t Let Me Go is that fear keeps us alone. But we need each other. It’s so easy to avoid each other, because it’s so complicated to deal with people. So fraught with emotional and logistical landmines. But what we lose in being alone is so much greater than the trouble we avoid. It’s the kind of lesson that could go right over the head of a grownup, while a 10-year-old kid could grasp it easily.

How do you keep in touch with your readers?

Any way I can. Any way they want me to. I have my email address on my website. And it’s my actual address. The mail comes to me, and only to me. I don’t have an assistant weeding these out for me. I just like to hear from readers. So I correspond with readers fairly regularly by email. And of course there’s Twitter and Facebook, and that’s another way readers and I can interact.

What are you reading now?

Second Nature by Jacqueline Mitchard.

What would you like to tell readers?

That it’s not a line when I say I like to hear from readers. I really do. It makes this a far less solitary profession. I love to hear what readers did and did not like about the books. I love it when people tell me favorite lines. I love it even more when they tell me about their own life experience as it relates to what they read. It means a great deal when relative strangers give me pieces of themselves like that. It has value.

I also want to tell readers to never judge a book by its movie.

Where can we find you online?

My website: www.catherineryanhyde.com
My blog: http://www.catherineryanhyde.com/blog/
Facebook profile: https://www.facebook.com/crhyde
Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Catherine-Ryan-Hyde/55974126195
Twitter: http://twitter.com/cryanhyde

I could go on, but…I’m guessing, armed with that, you’ll find me.

Here’s an excerpt from DON’T LET ME GO:

“Who brought you home from school?” he asked Grace.

            He sat perched on the very edge of his sofa, watching her look around his apartment.  Watching her peer at all of his photos again, as if she hadn’t just examined them the previous day.

            He couldn’t focus away from his lack of sleep.  It left his nerves raw, and feeling as though they’d been recently sandpapered.

            “Felipe did,” she said.  “That way Yolanda wouldn’t have to take off from work.  Because they don’t pay Yolanda when she takes off from work.  She can take off.  But then she just loses the money.”

            “And Yolanda is…”

            “My mom’s sponsor.”

            “Sponsor?  What kind of sponsor?  What does she sponsor her to do?”

            “In the program.  You know.  Like an AA sponsor, except Yolanda is NA.”

            “Oh, good lord, that explains a lot,” Billy said, wishing after the fact he hadn’t said it out loud.

            “What does it explain?”

            “Forget I mentioned it.  That’s me in an Equity waver production of The Iceman Cometh.”

            “I understood the picture better before you told me that.”

            “So how did Jake Lafferty find out I was going to be taking care of you?”

            “Oh, that’s easy.  Rayleen had to go talk to him.  Because Felipe didn’t want to come pick me up at school, because he figured Mr. Lafferty would give him a hard time about it.  So Rayleen had to go talk to Mr. Lafferty, and I had to go, because otherwise I would have been alone with just my mom, who was asleep, and then if the county came to check on me, that would be bad.  So I went along.  And, wow, he was really mad.  But Rayleen didn’t act like she was one bit scared of him.  She just told him Felipe was gonna pick me up from school, and he better just stay out of it.  He didn’t like it much, but he just sort of said, ‘Why should I care?  Do whatever you want.’  But then he wanted to know where I’d be after Felipe went to work, which seemed weird to me, because, a minute before that, he’d just said he didn’t care.  I told him a lot about you.”

            “Oh.  OK.  That explains a lot.”

            “You say that a bunch, did you know that?  What does it explain?”

“It explains why he came down here and asked personal questions.”

“What kind of personal questions?”

“Well…how can I tell you…if they’re personal?”

“Right,” Grace said.  “Duh.  Sorry.”  

“What did you tell him about me?”

            “That you used to be a dancer and an actor and a singer…”

            That explains a lot, Billy thought, but he kept it to himself.

            “…and that your name was Billy Shine, but that your first name used to be Rodney or Dennis or something…”

            “Donald.  Actually.”

            “Oh,  Right.  Donald.  Sorry.  And I told him your last name used to be Fleinsteen, but you changed it to Shine, because Fleinsteen wasn’t a dancer’s name.”

            “Feldman,” Billy said, suddenly even more tired.

             “Oh.  Feldman.  Where did I get Fleinsteen?”

            “I wouldn’t venture to guess.”

            “There you go talking weird again.  I guess I told him wrong.  What’s this one?  Is this you dancing?”

            She held up a framed photo that had been sitting on the end table near the couch.  It was indeed a photo of Billy dancing.

            “Yes.  In fact, it’s me dancing on Broadway.”

            “What’s Broadway?”

            “It’s a street.  In New York.”

            “It doesn’t look like a street.  It looks like you’re dancing inside.”

            “Right.  In a theater.  On Broadway.”

“Oh.  Is that good?”
“That’s about as good as it gets.”

“Too bad you don’t do this anymore.  I mean, since you loved it so much.”

“Well, look at it this way, Grace.  If I were still dancing, I’d be on Broadway right

now, and then who would look after you?”

            “True.  But that’s another thing I was thinking we could talk about, because if you were still a dancer—”

            “Maybe we should play the quiet game,” Billy interjected.

            “What’s the quiet game?”

            “You know.  The one where we try to see who can go the longest without talking.”

            “Ugh,” Grace said, putting the Broadway photo back in the right place, but at the wrong angle.  “Sounds really boring.”

            “I’m just so tired, though,” Billy said, leaning over and fixing the angle of the Broadway photo.  “I didn’t sleep last night.  I’m just not sure how much more energy I have for talking.”

            Grace appeared suddenly in front of him, bouncing up and down on her toes, her hands on his knees.

“Will you teach me to dance?”
“That takes energy, too.”

Please, Billy?  Please, please, please?  Please, please, please?  Pleeeeease?”

Billy sighed deeply.  Wearily. 

“OK,” he said.  “I guess it takes less energy than listening to that.”






Don’t forget to leave a comment or ask a question to enter to win:
1 of 3 copies of DON’T LET ME GO
Each with a custom bookmark
*MUST* leave contact email to WIN!
Catherine Ryan Hyde is the author of 18 published and forthcoming books.

Her newest releases are Jumpstart the World (Knopf, Fall 2010) and Second Hand Heart (Transworld UK, Fall 2010). Forthcoming is Don’t Let Me Go (Transworld UK, Spring 2011) and When You Were Older (Transworld UK, Fall 2011).

Newer novels are Becoming Chloe (Knopf, 2006), Love in the Present Tense (Doubleday, 2006), The Year of My Miraculous Reappearance (Knopf, 2007), Chasing Windmills (Doubleday, 2008), The Day I Killed James (Knopf, 2008), Diary of a Witness (Knopf, 2009), and When I Found You (Transworld UK, 2009).

Both Becoming Chloe and Jumpstart the World were included on the ALA’s Rainbow List. Jumpstart the World was chosen as a finalist for two Lambda Literary Awards. Love in the Present Tense enjoyed bestseller status in the UK, where it broke the top ten, spent five weeks on the national bestseller list, was reviewed on a major TV book club, and shortlisted for a Best Read of the Year award at the British Book Awards.

Older works include the story collection Earthquake Weather, and the novels Funerals for Horses, Pay it Forward, Electric God, and Walter’s Purple Heart.

Pay It Forward was adapted into a major motion picture, chosen by the American Library Association for its Best Books for Young Adults list, and translated into more than 23 languages for distribution in over 30 countries. The mass market paperback was released in October 2000 by Pocket Books and quickly became a national bestseller. It is still in print, and was rereleased in a trade paperback edition in April of 2010.

More than 50 of her short stories have been published in The Antioch Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Ploughshares, Glimmer Train, The Sun and many other journals, and in the anthologies Santa Barbara Stories and California Shorts and the bestselling anthology Dog is my Co-Pilot. Her stories have been honored in the Raymond Carver Short Story Contest and the Tobias Wolff Award and nominated for Best American Short Stories, the O’Henry Award, and the Pushcart Prize. Three have been cited in Best American Short Stories.

She is founder and former president (2000-2009) of the Pay It Forward Foundation. As a professional public speaker she has addressed the National Conference on Education, twice spoken at Cornell University, met with Americorps members at the White House and shared a dais with Bill Clinton.

Interview + Giveaway with Diana Cosby and HIS DESTINY!

>

Diana Cosby, International Best-Selling author (and fellow Margie Lawson grad) , is with me today talking about her upcoming release HIS DESTINY, on sale this October, and chocolate cake! Yes, you heard me right! Chocolate cake! In fact, she’s sharing her very own special recipe of chocolate cake! YUM!!
We’ve got lots of giveaways and lots to talk about!
Remember to leave a comment or ask Diana a question to enter for one of the following prizes:
1) An ARC of HIS DESTINY
2) Claymore letter opener with a sheath (shaped like sword)
3) 1 of 5 custom handmade bookmarks

THEIR SECRETS WILL DRAW THEM TOGETHER

As one of England’s most capable mercenaries, Emma Astyn can charm an enemy and brandish a knife with unmatched finesse. Assigned to befriend Dubh Duer, an infamous Scottish rebel, she assumes the guise of innocent damsel Christina Moffat to intercept the writ he’s carrying to a traitorous bishop. But as she gains the dark hero’s confidence and realizes they share a tattered past, compassion—and passion—distract her from the task at hand…

BUT THE TRUTH MAY TEAR THEM APART

His legendary slaying of English knights has won him the name Dubh Duer, but Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder is driven by duty and honor, not heroics. Rescuing Christina from the clutches of several such knights is a matter of obligation for the Scot. But there’s something alluring about her fiery spirit, even if he has misgivings about her tragic history. Together, they’ll endure a perilous journey of love and betrayal, and a harrowing fight for their lives…

Diana, tell us about your upcoming release.

His Destiny is Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder’s story about redemption. A tortured soul, he yearns for a family who believes him dead, and he is determined to somehow mend a bond he shattered. But he doesn’t count on saving a woman he believes is Scottish, her betrayal, or that amongst the setting of Scotland torn in a war for its independence, to find love.

What’s your favorite thing about the book featured here today?

My favorite thing about His Destiny is the characters, their struggles, the challenges they overcome to find peace with self as love; Patrik as Emma both hold dark secrets that can destroy them.

What sparked the idea for this book/series?

I love fairies as crystals. I thought how neat to create a series where by inventive means, each heroine takes a crystal belonging to her respective hero before she flees. I’ve had a blast incorporating that aspect in each MacGruder brother book.

What creates the biggest conflict between your hero and heroine?

As a child, Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder’s family was murdered before his eyes by English knights. Since, he’s despised the English. The heroine, an English mercenary, is hired by an English advisor to gain Patrik’s trust and learn the secrets he knows. His Destiny begins by the heroine pretending to be a Scottish woman in distress, setting up an event where Patrik ‘saves’ her. The biggest conflict is that Emma doesn’t count on falling in love with Patrik, and being forced to decide if she can walk away from her mission or tell him the truth.

Why did you put these two together?

Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder is a tortured hero, a strong knight who would easily overwhelm most women. So, I knew the heroine must be as strong as him, hence I made her a mercenary. Then, I knew his heroine must be English, whom he despises with his every breath. When I paired the two in a dynamic setting, sparks ignited.

What do you love most about this book/series?

That the common theme woven throughout the MacGruder brothers series is, “All is not what it seems.”

What is your writing routine?

Each day after my morning work, I write until I reach my daily goal. When I’m writing new pages, I write 5 pages a day. When I write, I normally have a Macintosh candle going and listen to soundtracks like Braveheart, Rob Roy, or Elizabeth: The Golden Age.

How do you keep in touch with your readers?

Daily on Facebook. Otherwise, e-mail, newsletters, book signings, speaking engagements, and other venues. I love trying new things, and recently appeared at a wine festival where I performed the waltz with a local dancer. Too fun!

What would you like to tell readers?

To always follow your heart and believe in yourself. Dreams are vision of what you can become.

What is your preferred genre to read for pleasure?

Romantic suspense any setting.

What did you do before you became a full-time writer?

I’m a retired Navy Chief, AGC(AW). I was a meteorologist/oceanographer.

What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you started writing?

To trust myself. Each story is unique, and only we can tell our story.

How would you best describe your books?

Scottish medieval romantic suspense. Think Braveheart meets Romancing The Stone.

Claymore Letter Opener – Click for larger image

What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?

My life goal is to make a positive difference in others’ lives. In addition to volunteering for Habitat For Humanity as well as other charities, I donate 10% of my royalties to a charity of my choice. As my career grows, my dream of making a larger difference in others life is realized. It’s truly humbling. I have many future goals, buy a working dog for a local police station, buy a fire truck for a local fire department, sponsor an entire home for Habitat For Humanity, with my largest goal being to open a place where military members can stay for free with their families during rehabilitation.

International Food Bank Food Drive:
In addition, I have an annual International Food Bank Food Drive as when you give a person who is struggling a warm meal, you give them hope. To participate:

Between 1 November 2011– 4 December 2011, when you donate to a local food bank, post on my Facebook page or Facebook Fan page, then I’ll add you in the drawing. On 5 December I will draw a name from those received and post the winner’s name on Facebook. The winner will receive an autographed set of the MacGruder brother series: His Captive, His Woman, His Conquest, and His Destiny. I’ll sign the books and send them priority to whomever you would like to give a personal Christmas present!

What are your current projects?

I’m currently working on a story for a Highland Vampire anthology coming out in 2012. Other authors for the trilogy include Hannah Howell, who is an amazing story teller!

I’m preparing for a book signing tour in Scotland during the summer of 2012!

Do You Have Any Undiscovered Or Hidden Talents?

I LOVE to bake, and I often create new recipes.  A favorite is, “Diana Cosby’s Awesome Texas Chocolate Cake.” It has layers of devil food cake, ganache, whipped topping, and shaved chocolate.  **Recipe below**

Do You Believe That The Cup Is Half Empty Or Half Full?

Half full, rising, and I believe each day is filled with enormous blessings.

Are You An Introvert Or An Extrovert?

Introvert.

Which do you like more—rainy days or snowy days?

Each are amazing and inspire me.

Are you a night or a morning person?

Definitely a morning person!

At The Beach Would You Rather Play In The Sand, Or Play In The Water?

Play in the water.

Are You Usually Late, Early Or Right On Time?

Early.

Where can we find you online?

Website
Facebook

Diana Cosby’s Awesome Texas Chocolate Cake

Devil’s Food Cake mix
Ganache
Whipped topping
Chocolate shavings
Chocolate frosting (*I make homemade.)

Ganache:
.1/2 cup heavy cream
.1 lb. semisweet dark chocolate
*In a heavy saucepan, bring heavy cream to a boil. Remove from heat, mix in chocolate, stir until melted. Chill ganache until peanut butter consistency.

Directions:
Bake two 9” layer cakes according to directions. Once cooled, set first layer on a cake plate. Add coat of ganache. Layer with whipped topping. Next, add second layer of cake. Coat with ganache. Frost side of cake. Layer top with whipped topping. Sprinkle on top with chocolate shavings. Chill until served.

Note: I love baking as creating recipes. With a passion for chocolate, I thought the pairing of devil’s food cake, ganache and whipped topping would be yummy. The addition of the whipped topping cuts the sweetness of the cake, making it moist and rich and a perfect anytime cake.

Enjoy!

Most people think of retirement as a time to relax. For me, retiring from my job as a Navy Chief Meteorologist/ Oceanographer allowed me to pursue my passion—writing romance novels. With 33 moves behind me and having traveled through many more countries, I was anxious to create characters who reflected the amazing cultures and people I’ve met over the years.

My years of living in Europe drew me to write in the medieval time frame. After watching the movie Braveheart and with my passion for writing complex plots, I knew I had to write in this volatile medieval timeframe, hence the MacGruder brothers were born.

I have many passions in life, but one that resonates in my life is that of giving. I firmly believe that each of us can make a positive difference in another person’s life. There are so many charities that I believe in. With each book I sell, I will tithe ten percent of my royalties to a charity of my choice. Some of the charities I’ve chosen are:

-The National Trust for Scotland, which acts as guardian of Scotland’s magnificent heritage of architectural, scenic and historic treasures.

-Habitat For Humanity [http://www.graysonhabitat.org/], which gives a deserving family more than a home, but a foundation upon which to build their dreams.

-Ducks Unlimited [http://www.ducks.org/], which supports wildlife and wetlands conservation.

His Captive-Alexander MacGruder
His Woman-Duncan MacGruder
His Conquest-Seathan MacGruder
His Destiny – Oct 2011 Pre-Order now! 
Highland vampire anthology: Title/Release date TBA

Remember to leave a comment or ask Diana a question to enter for one of the following prizes:
1) An ARC of HIS DESTINY
2) Claymore letter opener with a sheath (shaped like sword)
3) 1 of 5 custom handmade bookmarks
Book and bookmarks International
Claymore letter opener US/Can only
*MUST* leave contact email to WIN

If you have trouble commenting try :
~ a different browser
~ leaving a comment w name and URL
~ leaving comment as annonymous w email/name in message
~ email me and I’ll post your comment (joan @ joanswan.com)

>Interview + Giveaway with Diana Cosby and HIS DESTINY!

>

Diana Cosby, International Best-Selling author (and fellow Margie Lawson grad) , is with me today talking about her upcoming release HIS DESTINY, on sale this October, and chocolate cake! Yes, you heard me right! Chocolate cake! In fact, she’s sharing her very own special recipe of chocolate cake! YUM!!
We’ve got lots of giveaways and lots to talk about!
Remember to leave a comment or ask Diana a question to enter for one of the following prizes:
1) An ARC of HIS DESTINY
2) Claymore letter opener with a sheath (shaped like sword)
3) 1 of 5 custom handmade bookmarks

THEIR SECRETS WILL DRAW THEM TOGETHER

As one of England’s most capable mercenaries, Emma Astyn can charm an enemy and brandish a knife with unmatched finesse. Assigned to befriend Dubh Duer, an infamous Scottish rebel, she assumes the guise of innocent damsel Christina Moffat to intercept the writ he’s carrying to a traitorous bishop. But as she gains the dark hero’s confidence and realizes they share a tattered past, compassion—and passion—distract her from the task at hand…

BUT THE TRUTH MAY TEAR THEM APART

His legendary slaying of English knights has won him the name Dubh Duer, but Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder is driven by duty and honor, not heroics. Rescuing Christina from the clutches of several such knights is a matter of obligation for the Scot. But there’s something alluring about her fiery spirit, even if he has misgivings about her tragic history. Together, they’ll endure a perilous journey of love and betrayal, and a harrowing fight for their lives…

Diana, tell us about your upcoming release.

His Destiny is Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder’s story about redemption. A tortured soul, he yearns for a family who believes him dead, and he is determined to somehow mend a bond he shattered. But he doesn’t count on saving a woman he believes is Scottish, her betrayal, or that amongst the setting of Scotland torn in a war for its independence, to find love.

What’s your favorite thing about the book featured here today?

My favorite thing about His Destiny is the characters, their struggles, the challenges they overcome to find peace with self as love; Patrik as Emma both hold dark secrets that can destroy them.

What sparked the idea for this book/series?

I love fairies as crystals. I thought how neat to create a series where by inventive means, each heroine takes a crystal belonging to her respective hero before she flees. I’ve had a blast incorporating that aspect in each MacGruder brother book.

What creates the biggest conflict between your hero and heroine?

As a child, Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder’s family was murdered before his eyes by English knights. Since, he’s despised the English. The heroine, an English mercenary, is hired by an English advisor to gain Patrik’s trust and learn the secrets he knows. His Destiny begins by the heroine pretending to be a Scottish woman in distress, setting up an event where Patrik ‘saves’ her. The biggest conflict is that Emma doesn’t count on falling in love with Patrik, and being forced to decide if she can walk away from her mission or tell him the truth.

Why did you put these two together?

Sir Patrik Cleary MacGruder is a tortured hero, a strong knight who would easily overwhelm most women. So, I knew the heroine must be as strong as him, hence I made her a mercenary. Then, I knew his heroine must be English, whom he despises with his every breath. When I paired the two in a dynamic setting, sparks ignited.

What do you love most about this book/series?

That the common theme woven throughout the MacGruder brothers series is, “All is not what it seems.”

What is your writing routine?

Each day after my morning work, I write until I reach my daily goal. When I’m writing new pages, I write 5 pages a day. When I write, I normally have a Macintosh candle going and listen to soundtracks like Braveheart, Rob Roy, or Elizabeth: The Golden Age.

How do you keep in touch with your readers?

Daily on Facebook. Otherwise, e-mail, newsletters, book signings, speaking engagements, and other venues. I love trying new things, and recently appeared at a wine festival where I performed the waltz with a local dancer. Too fun!

What would you like to tell readers?

To always follow your heart and believe in yourself. Dreams are vision of what you can become.

What is your preferred genre to read for pleasure?

Romantic suspense any setting.

What did you do before you became a full-time writer?

I’m a retired Navy Chief, AGC(AW). I was a meteorologist/oceanographer.

What do you know now that you wish you’d known when you started writing?

To trust myself. Each story is unique, and only we can tell our story.

How would you best describe your books?

Scottish medieval romantic suspense. Think Braveheart meets Romancing The Stone.

Claymore Letter Opener – Click for larger image

What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing?

My life goal is to make a positive difference in others’ lives. In addition to volunteering for Habitat For Humanity as well as other charities, I donate 10% of my royalties to a charity of my choice. As my career grows, my dream of making a larger difference in others life is realized. It’s truly humbling. I have many future goals, buy a working dog for a local police station, buy a fire truck for a local fire department, sponsor an entire home for Habitat For Humanity, with my largest goal being to open a place where military members can stay for free with their families during rehabilitation.

International Food Bank Food Drive:
In addition, I have an annual International Food Bank Food Drive as when you give a person who is struggling a warm meal, you give them hope. To participate:

Between 1 November 2011– 4 December 2011, when you donate to a local food bank, post on my Facebook page or Facebook Fan page, then I’ll add you in the drawing. On 5 December I will draw a name from those received and post the winner’s name on Facebook. The winner will receive an autographed set of the MacGruder brother series: His Captive, His Woman, His Conquest, and His Destiny. I’ll sign the books and send them priority to whomever you would like to give a personal Christmas present!

What are your current projects?

I’m currently working on a story for a Highland Vampire anthology coming out in 2012. Other authors for the trilogy include Hannah Howell, who is an amazing story teller!

I’m preparing for a book signing tour in Scotland during the summer of 2012!

Do You Have Any Undiscovered Or Hidden Talents?

I LOVE to bake, and I often create new recipes.  A favorite is, “Diana Cosby’s Awesome Texas Chocolate Cake.” It has layers of devil food cake, ganache, whipped topping, and shaved chocolate.  **Recipe below**

Do You Believe That The Cup Is Half Empty Or Half Full?

Half full, rising, and I believe each day is filled with enormous blessings.

Are You An Introvert Or An Extrovert?

Introvert.

Which do you like more—rainy days or snowy days?

Each are amazing and inspire me.

Are you a night or a morning person?

Definitely a morning person!

At The Beach Would You Rather Play In The Sand, Or Play In The Water?

Play in the water.

Are You Usually Late, Early Or Right On Time?

Early.

Where can we find you online?

Website
Facebook

Diana Cosby’s Awesome Texas Chocolate Cake

Devil’s Food Cake mix
Ganache
Whipped topping
Chocolate shavings
Chocolate frosting (*I make homemade.)

Ganache:
.1/2 cup heavy cream
.1 lb. semisweet dark chocolate
*In a heavy saucepan, bring heavy cream to a boil. Remove from heat, mix in chocolate, stir until melted. Chill ganache until peanut butter consistency.

Directions:
Bake two 9” layer cakes according to directions. Once cooled, set first layer on a cake plate. Add coat of ganache. Layer with whipped topping. Next, add second layer of cake. Coat with ganache. Frost side of cake. Layer top with whipped topping. Sprinkle on top with chocolate shavings. Chill until served.

Note: I love baking as creating recipes. With a passion for chocolate, I thought the pairing of devil’s food cake, ganache and whipped topping would be yummy. The addition of the whipped topping cuts the sweetness of the cake, making it moist and rich and a perfect anytime cake.

Enjoy!

Most people think of retirement as a time to relax. For me, retiring from my job as a Navy Chief Meteorologist/ Oceanographer allowed me to pursue my passion—writing romance novels. With 33 moves behind me and having traveled through many more countries, I was anxious to create characters who reflected the amazing cultures and people I’ve met over the years.

My years of living in Europe drew me to write in the medieval time frame. After watching the movie Braveheart and with my passion for writing complex plots, I knew I had to write in this volatile medieval timeframe, hence the MacGruder brothers were born.

I have many passions in life, but one that resonates in my life is that of giving. I firmly believe that each of us can make a positive difference in another person’s life. There are so many charities that I believe in. With each book I sell, I will tithe ten percent of my royalties to a charity of my choice. Some of the charities I’ve chosen are:

-The National Trust for Scotland, which acts as guardian of Scotland’s magnificent heritage of architectural, scenic and historic treasures.

-Habitat For Humanity [http://www.graysonhabitat.org/], which gives a deserving family more than a home, but a foundation upon which to build their dreams.

-Ducks Unlimited [http://www.ducks.org/], which supports wildlife and wetlands conservation.

His Captive-Alexander MacGruder
His Woman-Duncan MacGruder
His Conquest-Seathan MacGruder
His Destiny – Oct 2011 Pre-Order now! 
Highland vampire anthology: Title/Release date TBA

Remember to leave a comment or ask Diana a question to enter for one of the following prizes:
1) An ARC of HIS DESTINY
2) Claymore letter opener with a sheath (shaped like sword)
3) 1 of 5 custom handmade bookmarks
Book and bookmarks International
Claymore letter opener US/Can only
*MUST* leave contact email to WIN

If you have trouble commenting try :
~ a different browser
~ leaving a comment w name and URL
~ leaving comment as annonymous w email/name in message
~ email me and I’ll post your comment (joan @ joanswan.com)

BDSM Love & Relationships with Dr. Charley Ferrer

>I’d like to welcome our special guest Dr. Charley Ferrer. 

Dr. Charley Ferrer is a world renowned Clinical Sexologist, Talk Show Host, and award winning author. She has appeared on numerous radio and television and is a freelance writer for various newspapers and magazines. She lectures on relationships and sexual health throughout the United States and Latin America.

We have extra-special giveaways today. Comment to enter.  Details below.

BDSM Love & Relationships

By

Dr. Charley Ferrer

I’ve been a Clinical Sexologist and Relationship Mentor for over 15 years. I’ve written six other books on sexuality and self-empowerment, even won the award for Best Self-Help Book 2002 with my first book, The W.I.S.E. Journal for the Sensual Woman. My book, The Latina Kama Sutra, was nominated for best sexuality book in 2008. And though I’m beyond proud of all my books, I’m especially thrilled about my two new books BDSM FOR WRITERS and BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH.

It’s my hope that with these two new books on Dominance and submission, I can pull back the leather curtain and show you the truth behind this uniquely erotic and often misunderstand lifestyle. BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH will assist you, the reader, to better understand the men and women who identify within this unique mindset and dispel many of the misconceptions the media and Hollywood have erroneously portrayed in order to sensationalize the audience and make money. It’s my desire to shed some like into the dark abyss and show you that the men and women who participate in Power Exchange relationships are not weird, perverted, nor mentally unstable though their desires do not conform to the norm. Please note I stated “norm” not normal. BDSM IS A NORMAL expression of an individual’s sexual and sensual desires; however it is not a common.

I’m often asked if BDSM is about one person hurting another. The answer to that is NO! The major difference between BDSM and domestic violence is that when the submissive (receiver) asks the Dominant (giver) to stop—the Dominant stops! In a domestic violence situation, the abuser does not stop. Often there is anger and hatred behind domestic violence. In a power exchange relationship, there is no malice. The individuals are not trying to hurt nor injury each other; they merely wish to share a sacred part of themselves with another. And yes, their interactions may look different than your typical relationships however when you stop and think about it, we all express our love and affection in a different ways.

Though they resemble their vanilla cousins to a large extent, Dominance and submission relationships differ greatly based not only because of the Power Exchange dynamics involved but based on the level of open communication and the willingness of each individual to open themselves up to their partner. This amazing mixture of communication, acceptance, affection, exploration and vulnerability are the foundation of every healthy and long lasting BDSM relationship.

The most amazing essence of a Dominance and submission relationship isn’t the erotic thrills or the “whips and chains” as most would believe—it’s the communication. Dominants and submissives in a relationship speak about everything! Whereas most men and women entering into a vanilla relationship withhold information about their desires and sexual needs because they fear rejection or ridicule, in a Power Exchange relationship, the individual’s most embarrassing desires, their fears of abandonment, their fears of failure and never being good enough, their need for love and most importantly what these issues look like are immediately addressed or noted for further discussions. Granted the submissive typically reveals more of him or herself than the Dominant in this respect because let’s face it who wants a wimpy Dominant. However it is through these revelations, this baring of the soul by both partners, and the realistic declaration of their desires and what they’re willing to give and accept from each other that is the foundation of this unique relationship.

This doesn’t mean that the submissive or the Dominant won’t decide somewhere along the line that this relationship isn’t for them. Nor that fears won’t sometimes crop up and create obstacles. Yet because of their willingness to be honest about their needs and desires—in essence bare their soul and psyche to their partner—this openness will ensure these couples reach a level of intimacy and emotional connection unparalleled by their conventional vanilla cousins. And I dare say, they will reach it faster.

The fact that these emotional and psychologically intense topics are open for discussion within a few months if not at the commencement of their union, makes these relationships more realistic and emotionally stable than the typical conventional relationship where men and women hide behind a façade then wonder why things went wrong six months or two years or god forbid twenty years down the road and/or someone is cheating in order to get their sexual desires met.

I’m not saying that Power Exchange relationships are the best. What I am saying is, wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could be completely open with your partner and not have to hide any aspects of yourself; to know that you’re accepted completely despite your flaws or unconventional, erotic, and/or sexual desires. (Excerpt from BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH)

I have to chuckle when I think about how we all strive to be the best in what we do. We take workshops to find ourselves, go to college to learn to be better in our careers, play endless hours of video games or sports to “be the best”. And yet, the one aspect in our lives that will be with us forever—our sexuality—we quickly close our eyes to hoping that we’ll get it right some day.

It’s my greatest wish that BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH will open the door to a path of self discovery for you that allows you to embrace your wild adventurous side. And though you need not go to the extremes, you can dip your toes in this pond and take what you want from it. However if you find you don’t like it nor want to try, at least you can be confident in the fact that you’re making an informed decision instead of one based on ignorance or bias.

For authors, BDSM FOR WRITERS provides you with the necessary information required to understand this unique lifestyle and be able to create characters which convey the true aspects of Dominance and submission. My book not only provides you with the basics but more importantly it helps you understand the psychology and the emotional connection men and women make in this lifestyle. Without that understanding, your D/s characters lack integrity and I dare say—credibility.

I want to thank you all for taking the time to stop by and leave your questions and comments. I also want to thank Joan for her kindness in creating those beautiful bookmarks and having me on her Blog to speak to you about my books. Please reserve your copy today at www.bdsmforwriters.com and enter to win over 30 wonderful kinky prizes and one mundane one. Plus if you leave a message or comment today, you’ll be entered to win.

Live with passion,
Dr. Charley Ferrer

Dr. Charley has given us an extra special prize to giveaway:
A set of hand made metal shackles, compliments of Dungeon Delights
and worth $79-$99 !!!

Other prizes:~ A copy of Dr. Charley’s book – winner’s choice
~ 1 of 5 handmade bookmarks, pictured above
Ways to enter:
1 point for blog comment here
1 point for Tweeting:
@DoctorCharley author of #BDSM for #Writers talking #Relationships w #GIVEAWAY of shackles, book, bookmarks! http://bit.ly/o8xEuO #drcharley
1 point for liking Dr. Charley’s Facebook page:
Contest closes 7/13, midnight pacific time.
Winners chosen, announced, and contacted via email 7/14
** MUST leave a contact email to WIN **

>BDSM Love & Relationships with Dr. Charley Ferrer

>I’d like to welcome our special guest Dr. Charley Ferrer. 

Dr. Charley Ferrer is a world renowned Clinical Sexologist, Talk Show Host, and award winning author. She has appeared on numerous radio and television and is a freelance writer for various newspapers and magazines. She lectures on relationships and sexual health throughout the United States and Latin America.

We have extra-special giveaways today. Comment to enter.  Details below.

BDSM Love & Relationships

By

Dr. Charley Ferrer

I’ve been a Clinical Sexologist and Relationship Mentor for over 15 years. I’ve written six other books on sexuality and self-empowerment, even won the award for Best Self-Help Book 2002 with my first book, The W.I.S.E. Journal for the Sensual Woman. My book, The Latina Kama Sutra, was nominated for best sexuality book in 2008. And though I’m beyond proud of all my books, I’m especially thrilled about my two new books BDSM FOR WRITERS and BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH.

It’s my hope that with these two new books on Dominance and submission, I can pull back the leather curtain and show you the truth behind this uniquely erotic and often misunderstand lifestyle. BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH will assist you, the reader, to better understand the men and women who identify within this unique mindset and dispel many of the misconceptions the media and Hollywood have erroneously portrayed in order to sensationalize the audience and make money. It’s my desire to shed some like into the dark abyss and show you that the men and women who participate in Power Exchange relationships are not weird, perverted, nor mentally unstable though their desires do not conform to the norm. Please note I stated “norm” not normal. BDSM IS A NORMAL expression of an individual’s sexual and sensual desires; however it is not a common.

I’m often asked if BDSM is about one person hurting another. The answer to that is NO! The major difference between BDSM and domestic violence is that when the submissive (receiver) asks the Dominant (giver) to stop—the Dominant stops! In a domestic violence situation, the abuser does not stop. Often there is anger and hatred behind domestic violence. In a power exchange relationship, there is no malice. The individuals are not trying to hurt nor injury each other; they merely wish to share a sacred part of themselves with another. And yes, their interactions may look different than your typical relationships however when you stop and think about it, we all express our love and affection in a different ways.

Though they resemble their vanilla cousins to a large extent, Dominance and submission relationships differ greatly based not only because of the Power Exchange dynamics involved but based on the level of open communication and the willingness of each individual to open themselves up to their partner. This amazing mixture of communication, acceptance, affection, exploration and vulnerability are the foundation of every healthy and long lasting BDSM relationship.

The most amazing essence of a Dominance and submission relationship isn’t the erotic thrills or the “whips and chains” as most would believe—it’s the communication. Dominants and submissives in a relationship speak about everything! Whereas most men and women entering into a vanilla relationship withhold information about their desires and sexual needs because they fear rejection or ridicule, in a Power Exchange relationship, the individual’s most embarrassing desires, their fears of abandonment, their fears of failure and never being good enough, their need for love and most importantly what these issues look like are immediately addressed or noted for further discussions. Granted the submissive typically reveals more of him or herself than the Dominant in this respect because let’s face it who wants a wimpy Dominant. However it is through these revelations, this baring of the soul by both partners, and the realistic declaration of their desires and what they’re willing to give and accept from each other that is the foundation of this unique relationship.

This doesn’t mean that the submissive or the Dominant won’t decide somewhere along the line that this relationship isn’t for them. Nor that fears won’t sometimes crop up and create obstacles. Yet because of their willingness to be honest about their needs and desires—in essence bare their soul and psyche to their partner—this openness will ensure these couples reach a level of intimacy and emotional connection unparalleled by their conventional vanilla cousins. And I dare say, they will reach it faster.

The fact that these emotional and psychologically intense topics are open for discussion within a few months if not at the commencement of their union, makes these relationships more realistic and emotionally stable than the typical conventional relationship where men and women hide behind a façade then wonder why things went wrong six months or two years or god forbid twenty years down the road and/or someone is cheating in order to get their sexual desires met.

I’m not saying that Power Exchange relationships are the best. What I am saying is, wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could be completely open with your partner and not have to hide any aspects of yourself; to know that you’re accepted completely despite your flaws or unconventional, erotic, and/or sexual desires. (Excerpt from BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH)

I have to chuckle when I think about how we all strive to be the best in what we do. We take workshops to find ourselves, go to college to learn to be better in our careers, play endless hours of video games or sports to “be the best”. And yet, the one aspect in our lives that will be with us forever—our sexuality—we quickly close our eyes to hoping that we’ll get it right some day.

It’s my greatest wish that BDSM THE NAKED TRUTH will open the door to a path of self discovery for you that allows you to embrace your wild adventurous side. And though you need not go to the extremes, you can dip your toes in this pond and take what you want from it. However if you find you don’t like it nor want to try, at least you can be confident in the fact that you’re making an informed decision instead of one based on ignorance or bias.

For authors, BDSM FOR WRITERS provides you with the necessary information required to understand this unique lifestyle and be able to create characters which convey the true aspects of Dominance and submission. My book not only provides you with the basics but more importantly it helps you understand the psychology and the emotional connection men and women make in this lifestyle. Without that understanding, your D/s characters lack integrity and I dare say—credibility.

I want to thank you all for taking the time to stop by and leave your questions and comments. I also want to thank Joan for her kindness in creating those beautiful bookmarks and having me on her Blog to speak to you about my books. Please reserve your copy today at www.bdsmforwriters.com and enter to win over 30 wonderful kinky prizes and one mundane one. Plus if you leave a message or comment today, you’ll be entered to win.

Live with passion,
Dr. Charley Ferrer

Dr. Charley has given us an extra special prize to giveaway:
A set of hand made metal shackles, compliments of Dungeon Delights
and worth $79-$99 !!!

Other prizes:~ A copy of Dr. Charley’s book – winner’s choice
~ 1 of 5 handmade bookmarks, pictured above
Ways to enter:
1 point for blog comment here
1 point for Tweeting:
@DoctorCharley author of #BDSM for #Writers talking #Relationships w #GIVEAWAY of shackles, book, bookmarks! http://bit.ly/o8xEuO #drcharley
1 point for liking Dr. Charley’s Facebook page:
Contest closes 7/13, midnight pacific time.
Winners chosen, announced, and contacted via email 7/14
** MUST leave a contact email to WIN **

February Fresh

January has been both exciting and exhausting.

Together with the fabulous authors showcased here on the blog last month, we gave away 34 books!!  But beyond the books themselves, I’m even more thrilled about introducing so many readers to amazing authors they hadn’t before heard of or read.

February will be a month of fresh new posts, focusing on the positive–ways to keep yourself positive in writing and in life.  I’ll be posting material from my own hypnotherapist and work that I have done to get past writing blocks–which could also be used to get past blocks in everyday life.

I will also have tips and tools to aid in your writing.

Another exciting development this month is my new column with Savvy Authors, PRACTICED MASTERY.  The column will post on the first Wednesday of each month with a review of a new fiction novel from an author’s perspective.  There, I will showcase the stellar use of craft elements in each novel and highlight them to use as teaching points for other writers.

I hope you’ll come back often and share your thoughts, maybe sign up for the giveaways I can’t seem to keep myself from offering. 🙂

Thanks for following for the last month and meeting all my author buddies!

If there is something particular you’d like to talk about on the blog, a book you thought was stellar that you’d like me to review for craft, let me know in the comments.

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