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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

RWA Conference 2014 - Lessons Learned

~ Post by Suzanne Rock/Ava Conway

Whew, what a week. As many of you know, I attended my first RWA (Romance Writers of America) conference in San Antonio. 


It was...amazing. And overwhelming. And exhausting. LOL! I learned a lot about the industry, the craft of writing, and how to be better prepared for conferences. Below, I share a few tips on how to make writing conferences (or any other type of conference) a little less overwhelming.

1) Accept that you will not be able to do it all. There simply isn't enough hours in a day. Even writers who brought their assistants, couldn't see and do everything that they wanted to do.

2) Go with a clear goal in mind. For me, this was networking. I accepted the fact that I wouldn't be able to attend a lot of the workshops or book signings. Instead, I spent a lot of time in the lobby and met a TON of writers. I re-connected with old friends, strengthened acquaintences into friendships, and met some amazing people who are at the cutting edge of the industry.

For me, this was where I needed to be to strengthen my business (and let's face it, writing is a business). Your goal might be to attend workshops, get signed books from your favorite authors, or pimp your latest release. The goal itself doesn't matter, but it's important to have one. Otherwise you might leave the conference wondering if the entire trip was worth the investment.

3) Bring an empty suitcase. This tip was given to me by another author. She is an RWA veteran and always brings an empty carry-on suitcase to fill up with books and swag. Genious! By the end of the conference, I had collected so much stuff that I had to pay extra to cart my suitacse home on the plane. Not cool! Next time I'll plan much better. :)

4) Stay kind and keep it classy. Two of my most vivid memories of RWA happened in the lobby. In the first instance, I was alone and waiting for friends. Kate Douglas saw me and recognized me from a publisher event. Despite her busy schedule, she sat down and kept me company until my friends arrived. Such kindness! The second memory is of a similar thing happening again two days later, although this time the author was Virginia Kantra. It took only 5 minutes, but it made a huge impression on me. They are both classy ladies and I've become thier forever-fan. 

5) Bring pants with elastic waistbands. I'm not kidding. Everything at RWA seemed to revolve around food, and everything is bigger in Texas. Make sure to keep the constrictive clothing (and the diet!) at home. ;)

6) Make time for sightseeing. Let's be honest...when are you going to be in that section of the country again? Be sure to take some time to see the local sights. Not only is it fun, but it's nice to take a break from the conference craziness and relax with friends.

Well, I guess that's it. Hope you enjoyed my lessons. Have you ever been to a conference for work? What lessons/tips did you take away?

Below is my upcoming release, which you can preorder now. It will be available everywhere on August 11th. Enjoy!



Girl, Interrupted meets Beautiful Disaster in this thrilling and sexy debut novel, in which a college student learns her perfect life is a lie and finds new love where she least expects it—a mental institution.

Freaks, misfits and psychopaths. Those are the kinds of people found at Newton Heights Psychiatric Hospital, and high-society girl Lucy White’s new home.


Freaks, misfits and Jayden McCray. Jayden has his own set of rules for life at Newton Heights, and in this contradictory guy Lucy finds a way to live with the events that left her cheating boyfriend and best friend dead and Lucy in the middle of the investigation into their demise.


The problem? Jayden makes her want things she’s not supposed to have, blurring the lines between fantasy and reality and making Lucy feel more at home in Newton Heights than she ever did at home. But this isn’t how her life is supposed to be.


Or is it?


Preorder while it's on sale for $1.99 from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or ibooks.






Tuesday, July 29, 2014

What Makes Me a Raving Maniac?


Author, Sandra K. Marshall,  is certifiable.  Now, you ask what can do that to a normally strong woman.  lol  Technology is the answer.  I'm a published author and all I want to do is write.  Instead, I'm having to learn new technology and promote my latest short story. 

Here's the new technology that has me raving.  It's Microsoft 8.1.  Actually, I'm going to say it's not as difficult as I'm making it out, but it is irritating to have your computer crash and buy a new one to find out everything you are familiar with isn't on the new one.

First, I will say if I had a smart phone, or at least knew how to use one I would have figured some of this stuff out faster.  Also, it would be nice if Microsoft provided a manual for their new 8.1, and then you wouldn't have to learn by experimenting. 

One of the big things that irritated me is copying stuff and trying to paste into my old word processor (2003).  I finally figured I have to copy and paste into notepad, and then I can paste into my Word.  However, that isn't exactly easy either because wherever I'm coping from I have to right click to copy and then go to notepad and right click to paste.  I right click again in notepad, go to Word and go to edit to paste.  Simple, right?  Yes it is, if you knew that was how it's done in the first place.  Okay, I will admit after many tries Microsoft finally popped up and gave me the solution.  Why didn't they give it to me the first time?

Another thing I don't like that Microsoft has done is they have changed Windows Mail, but I'm sure some people like it even better, but I'm not one of them.  Microsoft wants you to have a password for every app you use.  I have three pages of passwords already, please give me a break.  Oh, I know it is for my own safety.  Grrr!  It just doesn't make me like it.  Frankly, I could have done without most of those apps, but everything has an app these days. 

Okay, enough of my ranting.  Yes, I will learn this new technology in time.  It will just take me longer to learn everything than when I was young.  Believe it or not, I was a quick learner at one time.  lol   One more thing, don't get too comfortable with 8.1 because I hear 9 is coming.  Grin!  Doesn't that just make your day?

Moving on to some promo.  Something else, I don't like to do, but has to be done.  My short story, All Bets Are Off, came out in audio during this mess.  Here is the link for it if you prefer to listen to your stories rather than read them. 

 


 
Can a recovering gambling addict bet on a second chance at love?

Ana Torres has dug her self out of her gambling debts and started a business to help others with the same problem.  Now, she wants to show her soul mate she has changed and win him back. 

Jason Gibbs meets his wife at a party and realizes he still loves her even after all she cost him with her gambling addiction.  He wants to find out if she has changed, and if she has, he will woo her back. 
 
Thanks for listening to me rant today.  If you have some suggestions, or a rant of your own, I'm willing to listen, so leave your comments. 

 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Interview of Author Rosanne Bittner



Romance Books '4' Us is pleased to present an interview of talented author Rosanne Bittner!
Author of DESPERATE HEARTS – COMING SEPTEMBER 2014 FROM SOURCEBOOKS

Hello to all my current and wonderful reading fans – and to those of you who might pick up one of my books for the first time!  Thank you for visiting this blog.  My newest book, DESPERATE HEARTS, is available for pre-order on Amazon and through Sourcebooks, and when it hits stores in mid-August, it should be easily found in Wal-Mart, as they are the biggest distributor for Sourcebooks.  If you can’t find the book on regular romance shelves, you might want to look on the “Best Seller” shelf in Wal-Mart, as that’s where my book published last July, PARADISE VALLEY, was placed.  In Michigan you should also be able to find the book in Meijer stores.  DESPERATE HEARTS and many of the other 59 books I have had published over the years are also available through Amazon, of course, and the newest book should be in regular book stores.

 My web site is www.rosannebittner.com – If you go to my web site, there are plenty of highlighted areas where all you need to do is “one click” to order many of my books.  DESPERATE HEARTS and many of my backlist books are also available for ALL e-readers through Sourcebooks.com, Amazon, Diversion Books, Kobo and numerous other e-book sources.  I also am on Twitter and have a Facebook page and my own blog site – www.rosannebittner.blogspot.com.

NOTE: For more information about Rosanne and her books, visit her author page at http://www.romancebooks4us.com.

BIO:  I have been writing novels since 1979 – sold my first book in 1982 and haven’t stopped since then!  I just finished my 60th book, DO NOT FORSAKE ME, a sequel to OUTLAW HEARTS, which will be reissued in June 2015, with DO NOT FORSAKE ME coming in July 2015.  Most my books are about the American West of the 1800’s – pioneers/trappers/wagon trains/building the Union Pacific/discovery of gold/Native American stories – just about anything and everything that has to do with settling our great American frontier.  I have also written about the French & Indian War, the American Revolution, The War of 1812, the Civil War and other periods and locations not related to the West, but western romance and family sagas are my favorite kind of writing.

I am a member of many historical societies and locally an officer in the Coloma Lioness Club, a charity organization.  I have won numerous writing awards over the years and I plan to write until the day I die.  I absolutely love my subject matter and love America’s western landscape and its history.  My husband and I have traveled the west extensively over the last 35 years, and I have visited every location I’ve written in my books.  We live in southwestern Michigan and are only a few minutes away from our two sons and their families.  I help with the book work for a family business related to the tool and die industry, and my main office is upstairs at the business, although I do a lot of writing at home at night. My husband and I enjoy traveling and we own a condo in Las Vegas, where we go for a few weeks in the winter to escape Michigan’s heavy snows and bitter cold.

Following are answers to the questions submitted to me by RB4U.  I hope you will take the time to read through these so you’ll learn more about my books and about my love of writing.   

Q: How did you get started?
A: The first question is hard to answer because I’ve been writing all my life – wrote my first poem in 3d grade and my first short story in 4th grade.  I was editor of my high school newsletter and wrote many, many poems and articles for the local newspaper.  I guess I’d have to say I “started writing” novels after reading THE PROUD BREED by Celeste de Blasis.  It’s a 3-generation saga about the settling of California and a beautiful love story.  I wanted to write a story like that, so off I went … and I never stopped after that.

Q: Why did you choose the genre(s) you writer in...or it choose you?
A: My genre chose me.  I grew up on western radio programs, TV programs and movies.  In the 50’s and 60’s and into the 70’s westerns were extremely popular, although many were poorly done as far as being realistic, and many didn’t get their facts straight, but I loved them anyway.  I cannot explain why I am so drawn to the American West.  I absolutely love western history and especially the magnificent western landscape, something no one can appreciate without seeing it for real.  It is spectacular and is truly “big sky country.”  I would say my favorite western movie is probably THE BIG COUNTRY, but I also love PALE RIDER, THE GUNS OF JOSIE WALES and John Wayne’s last movie, THE SHOOTIST.  There are so many dramatic and magnificent western movies that have been made over the years that it’s hard to pick a favorite.  In more recent movies, I loved 3:10 TO YUMA, which was actually a re-make of an old black and white western.

Q: What genre would you like to try writing in but haven’t yet done so? Why?
A: I am not the least bit interested in writing any other genre, other than WWII.  I have finished a WWII book but haven’t done anything with it yet.  Needs more work.  Other than that, I’ve tried other genres and just can’t get “into” them.  The closest I will come to doing something different is my next project, which will be my first contemporary; however, it will be very similar to a good old Native American romance like those I wrote in the 80’s.
     
Q: What is the adventurous thing you’ve ever done to research a book?
A: My entire Mystic Indian trilogy – MYSTIC DREAMERS, MYSTIC VISIONS, AND MYSTIC WARRIORS (Tor Books) is centered around a stone medicine wheel that was built atop Medicine Mountain in the Big Horn Mountains of Northern Wyoming.  The stone medicine wheel really exists and my husband and I have been there twice.  Now they have a paved drive going part way up to a parking lot, from which you have to walk the rest of the way up.  The first time we visited this sacred spot there was only a one-lane, rutted (no guard rails) road that twisted up the side of Medicine Mountain.  It was very dangerous, with no way to pass if someone came down from the other direction.  At time we had a regular car (not the JEEP we have today), and it was very foggy.  We drove up that mountain, scared to death we would meet someone coming down and worried the road would give out from under us because there were a lot of washouts.  When we came down, the Wyoming Road Commission was at the bottom ready to close the road for the winter!  It was only September, but this spot is so high up that as we left we drove into a snow storm.

Q: What actual event or real person/people from your own life have you used in a novel?
A: I have never used an actual event or real person from my own life in a book; however, I have relied on certain experiences in our western travels to help me understand what life must have been like in the 1800’s – the rugged, unforgiving landscape, the danger of wild animals and Indians, the list goes on and on.

Q: What parts of a book are easiest  and  hardest for you?  
AIt’s ALL EASY!!  Because I love my subject matter, and also because many of my books have already been “written” in my head, I have little trouble getting it all down on paper.  I never, never stop thinking about that “next book,” and I can’t get enough of western history.  And I love the western hero – tough, take no crap, can handle himself – but he loves his woman to no end and will offer his life to protect her – and the women in turn are strong and brave and a real match for the heroes.

Q: Do you have a favorite character? Who is it and why?
A: I LOVE THEM ALL or I wouldn’t write them!  However, I guess a true favorite would have to be Zeke Monroe from my SAVAGE DESTINY 7-book series.  The first book of the series, SWEET PRAIRIE PASSION, published 31 years ago, is STILL SELLING GREAT on Amazon!  Of all my books, Zeke gets mentioned more than any other character as a favorite of my readers.  A very close second would be Jake Harkner from OUTLAW HEARTS.  I love, love, love this man, and so do my readers, which is why I wrote a sequel to the book, DO NOT FORSAKE ME, which will be published next summer.  I can’t wait!!

Q: What is your writing routine? How many hours a day to you spend writing?
A: ALL THE TIME – every chance I get – early morning – all day if I’m not doing book work for the family business – half the night – weekends – it doesn’t matter.  Writing means I get to be “with” my characters, and when you read some of my books you’ll know why I enjoy being “with” my heroes!!  LOL!  Writers talk about “finding time to write.”  I consider that backwards.  What you do is “find” time to do everything else!!

Q: If you could mentor a beginning writer, what would be your 3 or 4 key points of advice?
A: Mentoring – My advice is WRITE WHAT YOU LOVE!!!  ALWAYS WRITE WHAT YOU LOVE!!!  Do NOT write for the most popular genre.  WRITE WHAT YOU LOVE!  I can’t say that enough.  And BE ENTHUSIASTIC about your story when presenting it to an editor or agent.  Let your own excitement get him or her excited!  Next advice – JUST SIT DOWN AND FINISH THE BOOK BEFORE YOU WORRY ABOUT EDITING.  If you constantly stop to edit every single chapter before going on to the next, you’ll never finish the story and some of your enthusiasm for the story will fade.  Also NEVER WORRY ABOUT A SAGGING MIDDLE OR STOP WRITING BECAUSE YOU’VE COME TO INDECISION ABOUT HOW TO HANDLE A PARTICULAR SITUATION.  You KEEP WRITING!!  Even if it sound stupid, if you write yourself “through” a particular rough spot, almost always it will come to you what you’ve done wrong or how you should “fix” the situation.  I NEVER “PLAN” A STORY!!  I start a book and let it take me where it wants to go.  I never fret over “what will happen?” or “how will I solve this particular situation?”  It will solve itself as you write.  You will have that light bulb “A-HA!”moment.

Q: What are some jobs you've done that could or did end up in a book?
A: I’ve never used a particular job of my own in a book – however, I can relate to hard work, dirty hands, sweating on a farm and so forth because I helped my husband plant and pick asparagus for years.  We live in a country area where farming has always been the primary industry.  I’ve picked fruit, planted potatoes, and so forth, so writing about rugged work in the 1800’s is easier for me to understand.  I have also gutted and cleaned rabbits and fish and have cooked plenty of wild game, so all of that helps in what I write about.

Q:  For a first time reader of your books, which one would you recommend I start with and why?
A: Oh, gosh, I wouldn’t know.  I guess if you’re a heavy reader, I’d recommend my SAVAGE DESTINY books because you will absolutely fall in love with the characters; but there are 7 books in the series and in order to truly grasp the triumph and tragedies of raising a family in the Old West, you need to read the entire series.  I would also recommend OUTLAW HEARTS and probably THUNDER ON THE PLAINS (about the building of the Union Pacific) and perhaps WILDEST DREAMS (about a couple that settles in Montana when it was wild and untamed).
                  
Q: Out of your entire backlist, which book has the best opening line? What's the line?
A: I wouldn’t know where to begin.  Maybe PARADISE VALLEY (July 2013) – [Maggie paused to push back a strand of hair, hoping she’d dug the hole deep enough.  Lord knew she was accustomed to hard work, but this was the first time the dirt and blisters on her hands came from digging a grave.  Worse – it was her husband she was burying.]

Q: What do you hope readers take with them after reading your work?
A: I hope ( and I have received thousands of comments verifying this over the years) that readers come away with memories of characters who will stay with them forever – and with a new knowledge of American history – something they never learned in school – most of all I hope they come away with an appreciation for the courage and strength our pioneers needed to settle untamed lands.

Q: Tell us about your latest release? (or the book you wish to feature.)
A: My latest release is DESPERATE HEARTS, coming into stores around mid-August.  It’s the story of a Montana vigilante, Mitch Brady, whose ideas of right and wrong are challenged when he falls in love with Elizabeth Wainright, a well-bred lady who shows up in the wild gold town of Alder, Montana with no really logical explanation of why she’s come there.  Elizabeth is secretly running from the law and an abusive step-father in New York City – and she thinks it will be a cold day in Hell before she ever trusts any man again … until she meets Mitch.
    
JUST FOR FUN:
Q: What's the top thing on your bucket list?
ASee one of my books be made into a TV or big-screen movie.
     
Q: What must you never leave the house without?
AMy cell phone!

Q: If you came with a warning label, what would it say?
A: If I came with a warning label?  “NEVER INTERRUPT ME WHEN I’M WRITING!”
     
Q: What hobby do you enjoy when not writing?
A: Hobby if I didn’t write?  More gardening – I’d build a hot house and raise plants to sell.
                
Q: Who are some of your favorite authors?
AOh, my … I’m not going to say because I belong to a writers group among whose members are many, many published authors whom I consider dear friends.  They are ALL good writers.  As far as authors form the past – Celeste de Blasis, Louis L’Amour and Alan Eckert.
      
Q: Coffee, tea, wine, beer, or the hard stuff?
A: COFFEE! COFFEE! COFFEE!
     
Q: What's in your purse right now?
A: In my purse right now – besides the normal cr. Cards, cash and lipstick?  - My .38 “Pink Lady”, loaded and ready!
               
Q: What do you do to de-stress?
AI have tons of “mood music” that I listen to whether writing or not.
     
Q: Describe yourself in one word.
A: DRIVEN!

Q: What is the one accomplishment you are most proud of?
A: In my personal life it would have to be producing two wonderful sons and 3 fantastic grandsons!  In my writing life – Maybe my SAVAGE DESTINY series, because after all these years it’s still selling, and right now I’ve already made more off of that very first book through Amazon than I ever made from it through the publisher all those years ago.

Thanks for being here with RB4U today!
Interview by R. Ann Siracusa.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Power of Positive Thinking and Visualization by Janice Seagraves

The Power of Positive Thinking and Visualization
by Janice Seagraves


I've been experimenting with the power of positive thinking and visualization, and I think it's working.
 
I tapped up some positive things that I wanted to happen that I could look at each day. And most of those things happened. 

I received a contract for my book series Alien Heart, and made a nice royalty amount for my book, Matrix Crystal Hunters, that I self-published. And it was number ten for a week and number eleven for three weeks.

Since it's working, I posted up a new list:

Cabin in the woods          

275,000+ dollars       

Best seller list       

Number one spot on Amazon     

Great vacation    
                                                                                        
Lots of great reviews     

New Car     

Bills paid OFF                

Be Positive                                                                     

New books released           

I’m a writer, I write books

My list seems a bit random, but believe me, it makes sense at least to me.

Now I don't know if I can make 275,000 in a year, but its not going to hurt to try. :) 

~*~
I also have a special announcement: I have added my three books to Smashwords.

Windswept Shores:
The sole survivor of a plane crash, Megan is alone on a deserted island in the Bahamas until she finds a nearly-drowned man washed up on shore. Another survivor, this time from a boat wreck. With only meager survival skills between them, will they survive and can they find love?


Matrix Crystal Hunters: 
Team Alpha Three’s spaceship is out of power after fighting a wormhole, and parked on the primitive world of Zenevieva. With half the team sick from radiation poisoning, the team commander entrust geologist, Maya Gladstone, to find enough matrix crystals to power up their spacecraft, so they can go home to Earth.
Vach Namaste of the powerful Clan Namaste, a native of the planet, has desired the lovely Maya since she stepped off the spaceship on that astonishing day a year ago. He’s hounded her every step since. As Hymeneal Night approaches, he makes plans to take her as his bride… willing or not.


Matrix Crystal Christmas: 
Crystal Flower Christmas: Vach and Maya are on a mission to undam the Laonooco River for the drought stricken region. As heartache fractures their marriage, will the gift of a crystal flower mend their relationship or break it beyond repair? Crystal Clear Christmas: Plague has struck the village of Zama and the citizens blame the only human left on Zenevieva, Maya.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Is It Time for the Apocalypse?

...fictionally speaking that is.

Do movies like World War Z and Hunger Games, along with television favorites such as The Walking Dead and Revolution portray a new hunger for apocalyptic and/or dystopian type fiction? Are readers ready to embrace the dark side of apocalyptic stories? Can the end of the world be romantic?

Heck if I know. Except of course for the last question, to which I'll respond with a resounding HELL YES!

When I wrote my first post-apocalyptic romance I was fully convinced romance readership was ready to embrace zombies and such post-apocalyptic horrors as irradiated hell hounds. I reasoned that, because I personally was fascinated by the dark eloquence of disarray and seat-of-the-pants survival, surely there were tons of other people who were too. The movies and television shows I mentioned above are/were rabidly popular. So it seemed logical to me that books along the same lines should be too, right?

Maybe not so much. Although I met face to face with tons of zombie lovers at the recent Lori Foster Reader and Author Get Together, and have taken part in many animated discussions of The Walking Dead on Facebook, I seem to be having trouble finding and engaging fans of this type of fiction online. I even created a Facebook group for apocalyptic romance: Apocalyptic Romance Clubhouse

Maybe it's just me? It's possible I'm not looking in the right places... But my outreach on this particular sub-genre has had only limited success.

I do believe there is a growing affection for this type of fiction. It could be that the visual arts are just a step ahead of the digital and print arts in this area. It takes a certain type of skill to portray the rich hopelessness and decay of an apocalyptic world in a book. It's so much easier to be pulled into pictures and visual presentation. Maybe that's all it is. I don't believe it's the darkness of the subject matter. It's hard to go darker than the premise behind The Hunger Games. And, yes, before the movie the books did very well on their own. I can't help thinking that, aside from the skill of their author in portraying a world that was shocking in both its outlandishness and its possibilities, it was that very shock value that drew people in...particularly when you consider the books were written for a young adult audience.

I believe the apocalyptic-type dark paranormal genre is on the cusp of gaining great popularity. I don't know why I believe that, other than the fact that it is larger than life...rife with possibilities for terror and brief but invigorating opportunities for wonder and good.  Here's how I put it in a recent blog post:

There's more to it than just the zombies. I love the idea of starting the world all over again. Hit a switch and, overnight, everything is different. The world is raw, dangerous, and all the rules are gone. There's an emotional zing you get from an apocalyptic situation. Nothing is as powerful as living each day, hour, or moment as if it's your last. Because it really might be. Relationships are deeper, good times seem brighter, and you learn to cherish every small good that crosses your path. Yeah, you deal with a LOT of ugly. But the beautiful in life shines just that much brighter by contrast. I think that's really what I love about end of the world entertainment. It boils us down to our most basic needs and behaviors and reminds us what is truly important in life...as well as what's just noise and fluff.

Whether apocalyptic romance will teeter on the cusp of popularity for endless months and years, a.k.a science fiction romance, or eventually plunge into widespread acceptance remains to be seen. In the meantime I'll keep writing apocalyptic fiction because I LOVE it. And maybe, someday, someone will even buy the books. LOL

Apart they are pain and death...apocalyptic. Together they are fire and magic...destiny. 

He’s a warrior, a bounty hunter in a world turned upside down. She’s his latest bounty...a creature of dark power. As everything in their world implodes, they must work together to set it right, while the fire burning between them threatens to consume everything in its path.

5 Shooting Stars! Redz World Reviews:  "...reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet with a post world war feel. Even the secondary characters were unforgettable... Tall, Dark and Apocalyptic by Sam Cheever will engage you on multiple levels; many you won't even realize until long after you finish the tale."


BUY LINKS ( in case, you know, you want to jump ahead of the crowd teehee):


USA Today Bestselling Author Sam Cheever writes romantic paranormal/fantasy and mystery/suspense, creating stories that celebrate the joy of love in all its forms. Known for writing great characters, snappy dialogue, and unique and exhilarating stories, Sam is the award-winning author of 50+ books and has been writing for over a decade under several noms de plume.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Interview of Author Victoria Adams

Today I'm pleased to present an interview of romance author Victoria Adams.

Latest Book: A Guy and A Girl
Buy Link: Exclusively at - http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00L2GRD1U

BIO:
I'm Victoria Adams. I live in Ontario, Canada with my husband and pets. Daughter grown up and is now teaching. I like to garden, cook and study Raqs Sharqi (Egyptian belly dance).

I've been writing since I was little. Being an only child, long car rides were filled with making up stories in my head about the people I saw out the car window. When my daughter was younger, I made up stories that she suggested. I'd say – Once upon a time there was a…. She'd shout an answer – chicken! And the story went from there. Great creativity exercise as it turns out. Now, my writing style has taken a split to contemporary romance for adults and contemporary romance for new adults.

Q: How did you celebrate publishing your first book?
A: By having a minor panic attack. I'm an indie author and I knew nothing – NOTHING – at the time. My hand was shaking and I had to talk myself into pressing the Publish button. Then I think I wanted to faint or scream or run and hide. Not a really classy reaction, I know, but that's what happened.

Q: What’s your writing schedule like? Do you strive for a certain amount of words each day?
A: I'm the most undisciplined person – a bit ADD - gets up and goes to get a Diet Coke – what was I saying? Oh, yea. I'm not the role model for the dedicated professional writer, but when I sit down to write, my focus is like steel. Takes a lot to break it and I can spit out a 5,000 word chapter in one sitting.

Q: What is the most important thing you do for your career now, as compared to when you first started writing?
A: I'd say it's the same goal – get my name out there. This is a tough business and I know I'm a small fish in a very large ocean, so it's a never ending process.

Q: Do you eat comfort food/listen to music when writing?
A: Other than Diet Coke, I really don’t' have food near my laptop. I'm a klutz. I'd end up with whatever buried between my keys. My Diet Coke is far enough away from the keyboard that I can smack it and not drown my laptop. On the other hand, I'm a dancer. (I know I just said I'm a clutz – what can I say – I'm complicated.) I taught dance for a long time and still take Raqs Sharqi (Egyptian Belly Dance), so if I listen to music, my head will start working on choreography rather than the scene/chapter I am working on.

Q: Covers. Ever get one you wish you could change?
A: No. I love each of the covers my fabulous cover artist – Fantasia Frog came up with.

Q: Give one advice tip to an aspiring author.
A: Write what you want to write. Learn the rules of the craft and then bend them to suit your writing voice.

I don’t like being stuck in a box and I'll bend and break rules. I have a personal saying – Picasso wasn't always Picasso. At one point he was just a guy name Pablo painting weird pictures.

Q: If you could give a younger version of yourself advice, what would it be?
A: Breathe. Life doesn’t have to be so complicated.

Q: What genre would you like to try writing that you haven’t yet tried?
A: Mystery. I love mysteries. Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers, Rex Stout, I have all their books. But I haven't a clue – pun intended – on how to write one.

Q: Any part of a book that drives you crazy as you write: beginning, middle, or end?
A: I'm a panster – I don't plan out my book. I let it write itself. What often happens is I have the beginning and end written before the middle, so it's the challenge of making the middle go where I want it to. I actually have one book – not published yet, that I knew the last line of the book before I knew the characters or anything else about the story.

Q: Out of your entire backlist, which book has the best opening line? What's the line?
A: From Book 2 of my Circles Trilogy – Circles Divided - Isn't it great to be in love?

Fun Stuff:
Q: What is your favorite holiday and why?
A: Christmas – family gets together and for a couple of days the whole world seems a bit friendlier

Q: What are two things people might be surprised to know about you?
A: I have a second degree black belt and I'm really, really, REALLY shy.

Q: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: A cowboy. Nobody had explained the boy/girl issue with that yet.

Q: Favorite food.
A: Chocolate.

Q: Favorite happy memory.
A: Any moment I'm getting a hug from my daughter. She doesn’t live in Canada so we don't get to see each other very often.

Q: Favorite drink.
A: Diet Coke

Q: Hot summer days or chilly winter nights?
A: Hot summer days. Being Canadian you might think I'd like cold winter nights- but you'd be wrong. I was meant to be sitting on a beach, under a palm tree, sipping ice cold drinks handed to me by hot sweaty hunks.

Q: What is the top thing on your bucket list?
A: I really don't have a bucket list. I'm just living life. I've touch a moon rock. I've touch ancient fossils. Touched meteorites from space. Been in a submarine. Flown a plane –even landed it. Flown in a helicopter. Been to Europe. The Caribbean. I'm a wife, a mother and a published author. What else is there?

Q: If you could have a super power, what would it be?
A: I don't know that this superpower has a name – but the ability to eat donuts and not have them stick to my hips!

Tell us where to find you: website(s), publisher’s page(s), blog(s), Facebook page(s), etc. List them all!
Blog – Victoria's Pages of Romance – http://victoriaadams.blogspot.com
FaceBook - http://www.facebook.com/victoriaadams.romancewriter
Facebook Author Page - http://www.facebook.com/pages/Victoria-Adams/244325918978641
Facebook - Circles Trilogy Page - http://www.facebook.com/CirclesTrilogy?ref=hl
Twitter – http://twitter.com/_VictoriaAdams
Website - http://victoriaadamsromance.wix.com/victoria-adams
Google+ - Victoria Adams
Wattpad - http://www.wattpad.com/user/VictoriaAdams
Plus – Triberr, Amazon Author, LinkedIn, SocialOmph, Goodreads etc

BLURB & TAGLINE:
Lies, deceits and secrets - not a good way to begin a relationship.

After an ugly past forced Hunter Connolly to escape to Europe, the talented hockey player is back in North America and determined to land a position with a professional team. But he can’t hide from his past forever, especially when his beautiful classmate, Chelsea, forces him to reexamine his life. Soon, hockey is not his first priority anymore.

Chelsea Henderson is a bright co-ed working towards her dream of being a professional dancer. She forms a unique friendship with one of her father’s newest recruits and would love nothing more than to take it to the next level. However, there’s just one small problem. He doesn’t know she’s his coach’s daughter.

Amid the deceptions, danger lurks closer than they could ever imagine. Will fate contrive to rip the young lovers apart? Or will Hunter and Chelsea have their shot at love?

EXCERPT:

Professor Campbell smiled. "Good, now that everyone is here, welcome. Today is a get-to-know-each-other day. I don't like impersonal classes where no one knows each other. I feel a class should be like a team. Since you'll be criticizing and analyzing each other's works, you should get to know one another. Let's go around the table, starting with you." He pointed at Chelsea who sat directly in front of him. "Name. Major."

"Uh...I...uh...I hate going first." A flush trickled up the side of her neck.

Out of the side of his mouth, Hunter whispered, "Better you than me."

She glanced at him. "That was supportive."

Hunter's heart skipped a beat.

"My name's Chelsea, and I'm taking this and a Composition and Repertory class."

"I speak for all of us when I say - a what?" Hunter looked at her sideways.

"A dance credit."

"Do you wish to be a dancer?" The professor folded his hands and placed them on the table. Chelsea blushed and nodded. He pointed to the person on Chelsea's right.

"My name is Steven Francis, and I'm pre-med."

Hunter listened as several other students listed themselves as pre-med, pre-law, business administration and economics. He shook his head. I'm so in the wrong place. But with Chelsea being here, this class could be liveable. At last it was his turn. "Hunter Taylor, and I don't have a declared major."

"What do you do?"

"I play hockey. I'm trying out for the Vipers."

The other five girls sat up taller, fixed their hair and smiled.

"At least our two dreamers are sitting next to each other." A smirk spread across the face of the pre-law student.

Hunter glanced at the table then back at the pre-law student. "You don't dream about becoming a lawyer? You don't dream about pleading a major case in front of the Supreme Court?"

The classmate refused to make eye contact with Hunter.

"Everyone has dreams." Hunter jerked his thumb towards Chelsea. "Chelsea's and mine may not be academic ones, but they're just as hard to achieve as yours are. Don't put me down 'cause I want to be a hockey player. I may have to hire you to represent me when I negotiate my deal."

"An interesting mix of students." The professor scanned the group with eyes lit up with humour. "A dancer, a few lawyers, doctors, business people and a hockey player who can defend himself against a lawyer."

"I play offence. We're the aggressive ones."

Anything else you’d like to add?
I'm a NA contemporary romance author. NA meaning new adult as in 17 yrs of age and up – not new ADULT as in erotic romance. As a romance group, you probably all know that, but some readers might not.

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