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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Meet InkHeart Authors Lauren Blakely, Elena Aitken, and Eden Bradley!

Lauren Blakely
Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart, and humor, and her books have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists. Like the heroine in her novel, FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. She loves hearing from readers! Her novels include Caught Up In Us, Pretending He's Mine, Playing With Her Heart, Trophy Husband, Far Too Tempting, The Thrill of It, and Every Second With You, Night After Night and After This Night. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney.

Find Lauren Blakely at:

Caught Up In Her
A sweet romance so perfect it could have been scripted by Hollywood. But can a first love survive past the first summer?

I'm not going to say it was love at first sight when I met her. I don't believe in that. Because love isn't about falling for someone's looks. Though she was beautiful in every single way, from her dark, wavy hair to her gorgeous brown eyes, to the soft curves of her body. But that's not why I fell so hard for her that summer. She took my breath away for reasons that had nothing to do with her looks. It was the the movies, the conversations, the walks through the small town, the nights on the beach with the waves rolling in, the way I could hold her hand and feel as if the world had simply melted away and we were all that was left. So, there was no love-at-first-sight. That would come later, and if it happened first it would take away all the reasons that stayed with me for the next five years. Even though you're not supposed to fall for your best friend's little sister. But that didn't stop me...

Caught Up in Her is a prequel novella in the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Caught Up in Love series.


BOOK 0.5: CAUGHT UP IN HER (Bryan & Kat's story begins)

BOOK 1: CAUGHT UP IN US (Bryan & Kat's story continues)

BOOK 2: PRETENDING HE'S MINE (Reeve & Sutton's story)

BOOK 3: TROPHY HUSBAND (Chris & McKenna's story)

BOOK 4: PLAYING WITH HER HEART (Davis & Jill's story)

BOOK 5: STARS IN THEIR EYES (William & Jess' story - October 2014 release)
Caught Up in Love Spin-off: FAR TOO TEMPTING (Jane & Matthew)


Elena Aitken
I’ve been writing in one form or another since elementary school but although I always knew I wanted to be a writer when I grew up, instead I earned university degrees in Marketing and Psychology and writing got put on the back burner. After my twins were born I was buried in diaper changes, middle of the night feedings and mountains of laundry—obviously it was the logical time to start writing again. I guess it took me while to grow up.

I turned to non-fiction and became a regular contributor to local parenting magazines, published in four Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies, and a compilation by Seal Press. It wasn’t until 2005 that I tried my hand at writing fiction and wrote my first novel. It’s buried on my hard drive where it should be, and ever since I just keep writing more.

Like a lot of my readers, I’m a busy mom. It often feels like life is pulling us in a million different directions, which is why I love to write romance!

There’s nothing better than knowing you have an escape waiting for you at the end of a long day in the form of a good book.
I’m lucky enough to live in the shadow of the Canadian Rocky Mountains in the foothills of Alberta, where I can write the stories I love. Whenever I get the chance, I escape into those amazing mountains and I can usually be found sitting with my feet in the lake, working on my next book.

As well as contemporary romance novels, I also like to write women’s fiction and my collection of stand alone novels are all part of the Escape Collection. I’m always trying something new, so stay tuned to see what’s next!

Find Elena Aitken at:

Tempting Gifts

Working in the children’s club at the Lodge, reputation is important which is why Lisa Gibbs is tired of the party boys only looking for a one-night stand. She’s serious about her life and career, and she won’t let anything—or anyone—get in the way of that.

Jason Porter will do anything to make his twin sister and his favorite nephew happy. Including attending a dreaded family reunion at the Lodge. But hanging out in the mountains has its perks—like the beautiful woman in charge of the kids club.
And flirting’s safe, because the last thing he wants is a relationship.

And the last thing Lisa wants is any sort of attention from Jason—no matter how funny and handsome he is—especially if it could cost her the job she loves.

But when their concern for the little boy they both care about, forces the two of them together, will they let their walls down long enough to see that what they’ve both been avoiding, may be the one thing that saves them?


Eden Bradley
I’ve been reading and writing for as long as I can remember. When I was 3 ½, even though I wasn’t quite clear yet on my alphabet, I decided there were never enough adults around to read to me and demanded to be taught to read myself. My Auntie Mo took the time to teach me. At age eight, I volunteered for summer school so I could take a creative writing class. My friends thought I was crazy; all they wanted to do was climb trees, go roller skating, swim. But I knew even then that what I was doing was even better.

I wrote my first novel at age twelve with a good friend who is also still writing, as far as I know. At a sleepover at her house, instead of sleeping, we stayed up all night crafting a rather horrible romance novel. Hopefully I’ve improved since then, and I now have enough sense to sleep at night and write during the day. Usually.

I didn’t get serious about my writing until the summer of 2000. I went into it writing romance novels, since that was what I thought I could sell, but eventually I returned to what I truly love: writing erotica, and eventually blended erotica and romance in many of my books. It’s been a difficult and wondrous journey, learning about the craft and business of writing, but well worth it. And now, here I am, doing what I love.

Fortunately, someone other than myself loves my work, too. I write for Bantam/Delta, Berkley Heat (as both Eden Bradley and Eve Berlin), HQN and Harlequin Spice, and Samhain Publishing, and I have a few self-published novellas out, as well. Sometimes it’s a struggle, but mostly it’s wonderful and exhilarating. I also love to cook, eat, go to the beach, hang out with friends, shop – especially for shoes – and read everything I can get my hands on. I’m fascinated by art, tattoos, and what goes on inside people’s minds, which is what I love to explore in my books. I’m dying to travel more, and would love to spend a few months at an Italian villa, cruising the Greek islands, or exploring Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, I get to write, and someone actually reads my books, which is a pretty good life!

Find Eden Bradley at:

Pleasure Point

The island always knows what you need…

Miranda lives in paradise— the exclusive Eden resort, the ultimate in fantasy retreats.

Roan, the resort’s dungeon consultant, lives part-time on the island and full-time in the past.

When the sexy Dominant and the sultry pastry chef both receive one of the island’s mysterious invitations they spend a sizzling week together in the dungeon suite. They’re left breathless, wanting more… and hopelessly falling.

Both have been scarred by loss, both have created a nearly impenetrable shell. The intensity and intimacy of kink might be the perfect recipe to open Miranda’s heart again. But can the man who fulfills her every secret desire ever give her what she needs the most?


Connect With Us At:

Monday, October 20, 2014

Guest Blog: M.S. Spencer: If I'm Happy and I Know It, Can I Write Romance?

Does your own love life help or hinder your romance writing?

I had a writer friend who'd been publishing romances since she was 19. Her earlier books were nice and steamy (or as steamy as Harlequin allowed), but her later books exhibited a slower, more deliberative, even hesitant approach to romance. I asked her why. Her response? "If you ain't gettin' any, it's hard to write it."

I've been wondering about that. Many of my author friends who write erotic—even BDSM—often turn out to be in blissful marriages with small children. Perhaps the balance in their real lives allows them to break out into all kinds of fantasies. Perhaps they like the contrast. How does a mind work that, on the one hand, can live a bucolic existence in a suburb of (say) Des Moines, and on the other, write about shape-shifting vampires from another planet?

From the reader's perspective, is the writer's writing impaired if she has an active love life? Does it bubble up in the writing? Does it distract the reader if he thinks he's reading an autobiography? These are indeed interesting avenues of inquiry, but today I want to address a different issue, this time from the writer's perspective. Does having romance in your own life make it easier or harder to write romance?

Romance writers tend to have two things in common—they like happy endings, and they like the push and pull, play and by-play, of the romantic story. The question becomes, if you're supremely happy—on your honeymoon, or celebrating the birth of a first child, or in your twentieth year of wedded bliss—does it hinder your ability to sit down and write a  story that effectively conveys all the necessary bumps on the path to happiness? Alternatively, if everything in your own life has gone wrong—death in the family, or divorce, or you despair of ever finding Mr. Right—can you still write a story that sails tranquilly over placid blue water into paradise?

Does it perhaps differ from writer to writer?

It's often been assumed that a true artist must suffer in order to create powerful emotional scenes.  Some people work better with a little angst in their lives--they can immerse themselves in the story and forget their troubles, or use the story as a release for their emotions, or create a sublime and harmonious world that they can manipulate any way they want.

On the other hand, some (like me) do much better when we're happy. It may sound odd, but when I'm with someone I care about, this little itch starts in my side and crawls up to my head and whispers, "Write, write, write now." When I don't respond, it usually hisses, "You moron, use it or lose it." On the other hand, if things are going badly, I'll do anything rather than put fingers to keyboard—activities that usually include staring out the window, making lists, and in my youth, smashing wine glasses.

Eventually, however, as with most authors, I'm driven to write no matter what the circumstances in my life.  But in this case,  the heroine tends to have a bit of a hard time getting to that happy ending and the story can get bogged down in booby traps, misunderstandings, and criminal elements. When my life is going smoothly, the story tends to move along a bit more quickly and the hero and heroine have fewer obstacles to overcome.

As to actual research into the psychology of the thing, I've found academic articles that examine how expressive writing affects the reader's mood—but not the other way around, i.e., how the writer's mood affects the expressive writing. I did find one blog by Darren Cormier written in 2010 that picks up the theme in a very interesting way:

I would love to have readers of Romance Books 4 Us weigh in with their perspectives. To a comment that sheds new light on the subject, I'd like to offer a beautiful keychain, suitable for holding the key to your heart, your home, or your planet.

Although M. S. Spencer has lived or traveled in five continents, the last 30 years have been spent mostly in Washington, D.C. as a librarian, Congressional staff assistant, speechwriter, editor, birdwatcher, kayaker, policy wonk, non-profit director and parent.
Ms. Spencer has published nine romance novels. Six—LosersKeepers, Triptych, Artful Dodging: The Torpedo Factory Murders, Mai Tais and Mayhem: Murder at Mote Marine (a Sarasota Romance, Lapses of Memory, and the Mason's Mark —were published by Secret Cravings.

BLURB: Her latest is Whirlwind Romance, published September, 2014
In the aftermath of a hurricane, Lacey Delahaye finds herself marooned on the Gulf coast of Florida with a mysterious castaway. They are immediately drawn to each other, but before Armand can confess his identity, they are kidnapped and taken far from civilization to a tiny, remarkable island in the western Caribbean. With the help of her son Crispin, a small, but proud young boy named Inigo, and a cadre of extraordinary characters, Lacey and Armand must confront pirates, power-mad ideologues, and palace intrigue if they are to restore the once idyllic tropical paradise to its former serenity and find lasting happiness.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

What's In Your Hat?

Thank goodness writers have choices these days! Used to be a writer had to write what their publisher told them to write. I've heard horror stories of requests for authors to change their names, adopt new pen names for different genres, or adopt a new pen name when a writer's book didn't sell well, giving a "fresh start" to things. Authors often trusted these decisions handed down to them, such as, "I don't think you can write suspense" or "you need to make this paranormal very dark and gritty and strip out all the humor." Some authors were able to accept and embrace these changes, and others could not. 

Just to be clear, some of those decisions and requests were good ones, and I don't pretend to understand or question the motivation of the Big 5. But we all know authors who didn't take their suggestion of tossing their manuscripts into the circular file, or sitting on them in boxes under their bed for twenty years. And let's not talk about what it does to an author who has had ten or fifteen manuscripts rejected, only to see something similar to one of their WIPs wind up on the shelves published by the same house. Good books were rejected due to shelf space, or "we already bought two titles in that line," and not because the book wasn't any good.

Today, if a writer can work hard to build a readership and audience, he or she can write in any genre, even in multiple genres and do it without changing their author profile or persona, depending. Things such as merging YA and Erotica would be obvious exceptions to this. But the secret to success today isn't necessarily in a "fantastic book" as in the promotion and the readership it gains, and how prolific the author can be. Authors who can churn it out quickly, have a distinct advantage in this market. And yes, the series is king. Once you sell them on the world, you don't need to sell it to everyone, you just need those people coming back over and over again.

I was floored when we asked readers how many books they read in Romance this year. Do you know what the average was of the 80 or so people who responded to that question? How about 200 books!! And did you know that there are some romance readers who read 1-2 books a day. I had a handful that said they'd read over 1000 books this year, and this year isn't even over yet! The average U.S. Citizen reads 5 books a year. That's right, 5.

So, when you have an avid public, looking for good reads and wonderful new authors to follow, because they have this insatiable appetite for reading, why would anyone want to restrict the number of books being written?

Mark Coker of Smashwords has said there is about a 413% increase in new titles this year. Do you think that will even make a dent in the shape of things if readers are reading 300 books a year? And with the ease of getting iBooks now on over a billion new iPhones and iPads out there today all over the world, with just one click, the market is certainly expanding. 

Some will argue the quality has suffered. Yes, we all know of some recent blockbusters that were poorly written, poorly edited and yet were loved to the point of making authors a household name, set for life. While it has worked for a few, I also don't advocate an author should aspire to this either. Putting out a professional book, looking professional, with professional detail to craft and editing, is still the goal. And today, we have readers who read everything from sweet cozy mystery to BDSM and back again.

So, I say hooray for choice and cross genre readerships, for series that go on for 25 books or more, for characters that blend elements to give us compelling stories in a wide variety of  textures and fabric that make up the quilt of the reader's desire. The world is becoming more connected through social media, some say getting smaller. But the world is also getting more and more varied as subgenres are able to flourish in this Indie Revolution.

And I think that's a good thing.

NYT and USA/Today and Amazon Top 100 Best Selling Author Sharon Hamilton’s SEAL Brotherhood series have earned her Amazon author rankings of #1 in Romantic Suspense, Military Romance and Contemporary Romance. Her characters follow a sometimes rocky road to redemption through passion and true love. Her Golden Vampires of Tuscany earned her a #1 Amazon author ranking in Gothic Romance.

A lifelong organic vegetable and flower gardener, Sharon and her husband live in the Wine Country of Northern California, where most of her stories take place.

Sharon's 8th book in the SEAL Brotherhood Series, SEAL's Promise is available for preorder now, and will launch on Veteran's Day, 11/11/14. Lots of parties are planned to sign up for the newsletter and find out how you can be a part of this exciting time for Sharon!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Interview of Lost Goddess Publishing - Michele Zurlo

Today we're pleased to present an interview of Lost Goddess Publishing (Michele Zurlo).

I’m Michele Zurlo, author of over 20 romance novels. I write in many genres, and I love happy endings. I’m pretty impulsive when it comes to big decisions, especially when it’s something I’ve never done before. Launching a publishing company is my latest impulsive venture, and I’m looking forward to seeing where this one takes me. Together with my wife, Dana Hillcrest, we’re committed to making Lost Goddess Publishing a quality experience for readers and authors alike. And yes, we’re a lesbian-owned company.


Q: What motivated you to get involved in the romance industry?
A: I’ve been involved in the romance industry since I picked up my first romance novel way back when I was thirteen. I fell in love with falling in love. When I decided to finally take the plunge as a writer, the stories that came to mind were all romances. As I navigated my way through the industry, I realized I wanted to do more than just write, and so I formed Lost Goddess Publishing.

Q: Ebooks or print. Do you read both? If you read ebooks, what reader do you have?
A: I read both. The format doesn’t matter me nearly as much as the content. I own a Kindle Paperwhite, which I love. I recently upgraded my phone from a Blackberry flip phone (purple!) to a smart phone that had a Kindle app. I haven’t decided if I like that or not. I can tell you that I’m not a fan of autocorrect.

Q: What’s the one most important thing a reader/author should know about your business?
A: Our goal is to be author-friendly. We want to work with authors to make their work the best it can be. Not only do we want authors to be proud of their work, but we want readers to know they can always expect a quality product from Lost Goddess Publishing.

Q: What are your guidelines for a writer/author to submit a book/manuscript for a review or to sell?
A: Our full submission guidelines can be found at We’re looking for hot, sexy romantic stories with strong, dynamic, and relatable characters. Stories are plot-driven, and the chemistry between the characters is palpable. Love scenes
and language are explicit. Your storytelling and voice are strong and unique. Your story and characters are smart, edgy, and engaging. We’re especially interested in publishing series and strong, stand-alone novels.

Q: Chats. How important do you feel it is for authors to take part in chats on loops or at other romance sites?
A: Readers care about authors and stories. With thousands of books coming out every month, authors need to do everything they can to get their names out there. Chats, loops, groups, and parties are some ways to connect with readers. It may not lead to immediate sales, but later on, when that reader is looking at Amazon’s suggestions, if they know your name, they’re more likely to pick your book to read next.

Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc. Where do you appear?
Twitter: @MZurloAuthor

Please add anything else you feel is important.
If you’re thinking of submitting to Lost Goddess, but you’re uncertain because we’re new, contact me at with questions or concerns. We’re open to new authors, receptive to new ideas, and very approachable. We’re working with several authors right now, some seasoned and some new, as they write novels they plan to submit to LGP.

Friday, October 17, 2014

New Book coming!

This a coming soon, and it's a Christmas shortie I'm fond of. Have been having all kinds of  computer problems, so I'll just post this and be more newsy next time.

The Yule log was satisfactorily ablaze, although Abigail muttered about how it was a shame they didn’t have a sliver from last year to light it with. Jared turned away so she wouldn’t see his smile. Hell, he couldn’t even remember where he’d been last Xmas.  All the footman were bringing in berry-laden holly and laurel as well as the mistletoe, and under Abigail’s direction swags of greenery were twined down the stair rails and around the mantels on the fireplace. Ivy and holly made sumptuous wreaths around the base of every candlestick on the dinner table.
The entire house smelled wonderful.   The mulled cider was kept accessible through out the day, with everyone welcome to warm themselves when they came in from the cold.  Jared served himself and walked casually to lean against the wall, cup in hand.  He found it hard to believe this cold mansion could be so transformed. Everyone, guest or servant, was going about the tasks Abigail has assigned, and everyone had a smile on their lips.
By god but she’d make a wonderful Marchioness. And eventually, a wonderful Duchess.
She was perfect. And for the first time in his life, he was not at all certain he would win the one girl he wanted.
To his surprise Abigail turned from the garland she was twining around the staircase, and walked up to him.
“Jared, have you noticed the snow is falling more thickly?” Her eyes were as excited as a child’s. “We’re going to have a really white Christmas.”
He grinned. “Do you think it will be thick enough we’ll be forced to miss the Christmas service at the church? I’ll start thinking up pleasant alternatives if you’d like.”
She laughed. “You’re a heathen, aren’t you? Don’t worry, I’m sure we can make it to the church.” Her eyes lit. “Do you by any chance have a sleigh? Oh, I’ve got to go see.” 
He grabbed her arm. “I have no idea, but I’ll send a footman to find out. If we have one it will be half buried in some barn. You insane girl, you’re enjoying all this fuss and bother, aren’t you?”
She didn’t look at him, but she whispered a reluctant yes, and then spun away. Fleeing the room, and him.
He swore under his breath. He nearly gave up and went to his room with a bottle of brandy. But some niggling feeling kept him there.
It was not a nice feeling. A premonition of danger overtook even his lust for Abigail. Something was wrong and he didn’t know what it was. He searched the rooms until he found Abigail wrapping some small objects in glittering paper. She immediately stood and swept everything behind her.
“Go away, Jared. This is a surprise for everyone!”
What he wanted to do was scoop her up in his arms and carry her to his bed. He’d lock her in his room to keep her safe, if she’d only let him.
Instead he looked at with a grave expression she’d never seen.
“Come, Abigail. Something is wrong and I don’t know what it is. I want you protected. Let me see you to your room and you can lock the door behind me. I intend to have the property searched and want to know you’re safe while I do so.”
She put both hands to her lips. “Jared, you’re frightening me.”
“Then let me make you safe. I promise to consult with you in the morning, if you’ll stay in your room tonight.”
“Of course, Jared.”
Holding her hand tightly, he walked her to her door, planted a sweet kiss on each eye and then her lips, waited till he heard the lock turn, and left. At least Abigail had let him kiss her three times, even if they were only little pecks instead of the deep embrace he longed to give her.
It was getting too dark to search far or well, but at least the intruder he intuitively felt was on the property would know he was alert.

Don't    forget, you can reach me at this blog, or at 
LOVE to hear from you!!!!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Interview of Author Melodie Campbell

Today I'm pleased to present an interview of romance author Melodie Campbell.

Buy Link:

Billed as Canada’s “Queen of Comedy" by the Toronto Sun (Jan. 5, 2014), Melodie Campbell achieved a personal best when Library Digest compared her to Janet Evanovich. Winner of nine awards, including the 2014 Derringer (US) and the 2014 Arthur Ellis (Canada) for The Goddaughter’s Revenge (Orca Books), Melodie has over 200 publications, including 100 comedy credits, 40 short stories, and seven novels.

Melodie got her start writing stand-up. In 1999, she opened the Canadian Humour Conference. These days, she is the Executive Director of Crime Writers of Canada.

Q: How did you celebrate publishing your first book?
A: Okay, here’s where I come clean. I blew the advance on a 1992 Corvette convertible (did I mention I am lamentably addicted to fast cars?) This year, I received advances for two books, and I upgraded to a 2006 sapphire blue Corvette. It’s called BadGirl, after my humour column.

Q: What’s your writing schedule like? Do you strive for a certain amount of words each day?
A: Like so many authors, I have a full time job, so I write at night and on weekends. A great vacation for me is hours to write!

Q: What is the most important thing you do for your career now, as compared to when you first started writing?
A: I make personal appearances. When I first started writing a humour column for newspapers, it was all on the page. Now that I write novels, I make sure to do readings and signings, attend conferences, and find ways to interact with my readers.

Q: How much of yourself is hidden in the characters in the book?
A: Rowena is who I would like to be. She’s a little more daring than I am, but our reactions to things are very similar. She does what I would do when confronted with dilemmas. Also, she has my (some would say wacky) sense of humour.

Q: Of all your characters, who’s your favorite, and why?
A: In the Rowena series, I love Val, the wizard who really wants to be a dress designer. In ROWENA AND THE VIKING WARLORD, Val travels from his medieval world to modern day Arizona, and the stranger in a strange place theme is (hopefully) hilarious.

Q: If you could change something about your first book, what would it be?
A: I got a little too close to rape in one case. I didn’t mean it to be seen that way, and it certainly wasn’t that way in my head. But reading it now, I can see that it may have been interpreted that way by some, and I’d make it clear now that it was consensual.

Q: How do you choose names for your characters?
A: The name Huel was the original name of the family I descended from. My late second cousin was Viscount Clegg-Hill of Shropshire and Shrewsbury, so I pulled a lot from our history. Oh, and I always research the meanings of names.

Q: Give one advice tip to an aspiring author.
A: Love writing. By that I mean, butt in chair, hands on keyboard, pounding out the story. You’ve got to love the actual act of writing, because it is just so much darn WORK. And if you love it, you will continue to write and get better at it, and then you WILL get published.

Q: If you could give a younger version of yourself advice, what would it be?
A: Write that first novel sooner. I was well-established as a comedy writer and short story writer before I considered writing a novel. Wish I had started in the 90s.

Q: Have you ever used an incident from your real life into one of your books?
A: Oh yeah. Grin. Some of the sex scenes are definitely from my past.

Fun Stuff:
Q: What is your favorite holiday and why?
A: Halloween. I love to dress up.

Q: What are two things people might be surprised to know about you?
A: I trained for opera. Carmen was my signature work.

I have a Commerce degree and was in banking for several years, before I quit for ethical reasons.

Q: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: An adventurer! Never wanted to be a princess.

Q: Favorite food.
A: Pasta. I’m half Sicilian.

Q: Favorite happy memory.
A: So many – most recently, winning the Arthur this year, at the Arthur Ellis awards for Crime Writing in Canada. I was so honored to be on stage with my author friends cheering.

Q: Favorite drink.
A: Campari and Orange Juice (just so Italian).

Q: Hot summer days or chilly winter nights?
A: Winter! I’m a good Canadian gal.

Q: What is the top thing on your bucket list?
A: I made the Amazon Top 100 list (all books) this year, before Tom Clancy and after Nora Roberts. I’d love, love to make the NYT bestseller list now.

Q: If you could have a super power, what would it be?
A: To read people’s minds! OH, what a great power for an author.

Tell us where to find you: website(s), publisher’s page(s), blog(s), Facebook page(s), etc. List them all!

He was her enemy and her lover…

All is not well in Land's End when Rowena is caught in an enemy war camp! Yet Rowena is not helpless. After all, she is a hereditary half-witch with a whole lot of magic in her. Too bad she doesn’t know how to use it. Escaping from the camp, she continues to botch up spell after spell.

When war comes to Land’s End, it brings the one man who threatens to conquer everything in Huel, including Rowena’s heart. Now she has to make the biggest decision of her life. Will she return through the wall to safety in Arizona? Or will she stay in Land’s End for good, and fight to save her people from the Viking Warlord?

I awoke to a strange scratching noise.

Dawn light was streaming through the window. I was lying on my back on the bed. A fur throw covered me from mid-hip down.

Lars was sitting, still naked, on the wooden chair with his feet resting on the bed. He had something in his hand.

"What are you doing?" I asked.

He looked up. "I am drawing you." He returned to his task.

Lars, the great Viking warrior, was an artist? It was the last thing I could have imagined.

"I want to savor this moment. Who knows what war will bring and whether I will even survive it," he said.

"Don't speak like that. I can't bear it."

His eyes whipped up. "You have a big heart, Rowena. By rights you should hate me for what I have done this night."

"I don't hate you. I understand you have done this to protect me."

He snorted. "That shows you know nothing of men."

I was bewildered. What did he mean?

"You said that this…night in your bed would mean that I am claimed."

"Indeed it does." His hand worked furiously with the charcoal. "Which is what I want. What I want, Rowena, mark those words. I wanted you. I have for weeks. Do not make me out to be heroic."

Anything else you’d like to add?
In 1993, a producer from HBO saw my play ‘Burglar for Coffee’ in Toronto, and offered me a spot writing pilots, which I turned down. Yes, this has to be the worst mistake ever made by a person not legally insane. But who had ever heard of HBO in 1993? Still crying.

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