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Archive for August, 2010

Would a shuttle driver make a good romance hero? with Rebecca E. Grant

My special guest today is fellow Carina Press author, Rebecca E. Grant. If you enjoy a contemporary cowboy romance, check out her latest release, Liberty Starr. Today Rebecca is talking about one of my favorite things–the romance hero. Tall, dark and a shuttle driver?

What do you think—would a shuttle driver make a good romance hero?

I hope you’ll leave a comment about your idea of a good romance hero here on Shelley’s blog today. All commenters will be included in the drawing for a free copy of my contemporary cowboy romance, LIBERTY STARR.

While you’re thinking about that question, last week I was taking an 8:00 AM shuttle bus from the Walt Disney Dolphin Hotel in Orlando where the Romance Writers of America conference had just wrapped up, to the airport. It was crammed full of romance writers. I should have been exhausted—we all should have been exhausted. But the energy on that bus was high—even though the temp topped out at over 100—the humidity was beastly, and the hour was early, after a late night—all because it was a great conference, and romance writers love what they do!

Even the ride to the airport was fantastic. I had the best seat on the bus—first seat on the passenger’s side with a bird’s eye view of our driver—a fabulously sexy, man from the Caribbean with amazing eyes, a tall, slender body and the sexiest…well, you know…sexiest everything!

I will admit I was unabashed about staring blatantly at him because physically, he was the perfect model for a romantic hero. He must have felt me watching him because he turned around and gave me a slow smile.

“Hot,” he said.

Too bad he was talking about the weather.

“Yes.” I agreed. “And that was a lot of luggage you slung under the bus.”

He ripped a paper towel off a roll he took from under the seat and wiped his forehead and the back of his neck. “I’ve never seen so much luggage. Must’ve been a lot of free giveaways at this conference.”

I smiled and nodded, seriously not trusting my voice—he was that good looking. He turned away and picked up a gallon jug of water, snapped the cap off and took a long pull. I watched the way his mouth fit over the opening of the jug—the undulations of his throat as he swallowed, and couldn’t help but imagine what his mouth would feel like—taste like.

He caught my eye in the mirror, lowered the jug and said, “Vodka.” He winked.

I chuckled. It wasn’t original, but it was entertaining. Encouraged, he picked up the microphone and treated us to a running diatribe of interesting facts and stories about the area. He was so engaging, someone called out from the middle of the bus, “you should do stand-up.”

He smiled at me through the mirror and said, “What do you think this is?”

About half-way to the airport he asked me, “What conference was this?”

This time I grinned—I haven’t met anyone yet who is indifferent to a romance writer. “Romance Writers of America.”

He reached for his jug, swallowed spectacularly again for me, and asked, “All of you are romance writers?”

I nodded.

“How do you conduct your research?” He asked. Again, not original—what romance writer hasn’t heard that one? But he was beyond sexy. He was compelling.

I decided to play with him a little. “Exactly as you imagine.”

He took another swallow and was momentarily quiet. I could see his mind working. Finally, he picked up the microphone and began to talk again, this time tailoring all his fun facts and stories to romance writers. Much of it centered around how romance authors conduct their research—and where. He was just short of crossing the line, with extraordinary timing, and an engaging laugh.

Needless to say, it was a fast ride to the airport, and I’m confident his tips attested to the fact that not only was he relentlessly sexy, he had a razor-sharp wit.

So, back to my original question. Do you think a shuttle bus driver would make a good hero?

When I got off the bus he asked, “Where do you get your ideas?” (only slightly different from the research question, but this time I knew he was serious).

I was serious too, when I answered, “Sometimes they come to me in dreams. Sometimes they just show up when I put my fingers to the keyboard. And sometimes,” I grinned, “it happens when I’m taking a shuttle to the airport.”

“Really? I could be a character in one of your books?”

“Trust me,” I told him. “You already are!”

Liberty StarrThanks for joining me at Shelley’s blog today. Don’t forget to leave a comment about your idea of a compelling hero, and why. You might just be the lucky winner of a free copy of LIBERTY STARR.

Click here for an excerpt from LIBERTY STARR
Click here to read reviews of LIBERTY STARR

Visit my website to read excerpts from books coming soon.

All the best to you,
Rebecca E. Grant

Love is Unstoppable!
follow me on Twitter: @RebeccaEGrant
or visit me on Facebook

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Oooh, Baby! with Kris Starr

Thursday Thirteen

Greetings, all! Kris Starr here. I write erotic romance and erotica, and I am so very happy to be hanging out today at Shelley’s blog – thanks, Shelley, for the opportunity!

Lovely by Kris StarrI am also thrilled to be a Carina Press author along with Shelley and a bunch of other absolutely fabulous folks. There are some great books available from CP, so if you haven’t checked ‘em out yet, do so! My novella is called Lovely, and it’s an erotic historical set in Paris in 1900.

But I’ll get to that shortly.

Lovely launched on June 21st, and as some of you may know, I got the best launch-day gift ever. On June 22nd, I gave birth to a gorgeous baby girl. So needless to say I am slightly brain-dead as a result, and I hope you can forgive me if this blog post meanders into the realm of “WTF is she talking about??”

Shelley suggested a baby-related TT, and I figured, that’s a great idea, and hey, how hard can it be to come up with thirteen baby items?

Um, remember that brain-dead comment from earlier?


But I did plug along, so without further ado, here’s your Thursday Thirteen!

1. Your brain somehow atrophies with the birth of your child. Or disintegrates. Or completely vanishes. Or, or…something. Whatever it is, I forget.

2. Time becomes like something out of an episode of Star Trek – before baby arrives you’ve got more of the damned stuff than you know what to do with. You read books! Spend time on your hobbies! Linger over lunches with friends! After baby arrives you can barely squeeze in five minutes for yourself to have a shower, toss in a (neverending) load of laundry or unload the dishwasher – and which activity you choose can be determined by whether you have any underwear left, just how gross your hair has become, or if there are any plates in the cupboard.

3. You no longer have anxiety dreams about appearing naked in your high school chemistry class, late for your final exam – you now dream about forgetting/losing/dropping the baby.

4. Five straight hours of unbroken sleep is the most decadent, delightful thing on the face of the planet.

5. You can no longer go anywhere without fifteen minutes of prep time before you go out the door, and you now must lug seventy-three extra things with you. Every single time. Because if you don’t have extra diapers, wipes, burp cloths and clothing with you, you’re screwed.

6. It’s only when you’ve got the baby bundled up in a wrap/carrier that she spits up all over herself…and you.

7. Along the same vein as #6 — all known infant bodily fluids (drool, poop, pee and spitup) now become a part of your regular, everyday life and you are guaranteed to get at least one of them (more likely two or three) on you on a daily basis.

8. And along the same vein as #6 and #7 — you thank whatever higher power/spiritual being you believe in that you have access to a washer and dryer and are not required to scrub baby clothing and other items on rocks in the riverbed.

9. Just as you sit down to dinner, the baby begins to fuss. You forget just what hot food and/or eating with the rest of your family feels like.

10. Forget makeup, hairstyling and dressy clothes. Now it’s sweats and tees, ponytails or headbands and that “natural” look. For all occasions.

11. A receiving blanket or burp cloth becomes a fashion statement that goes with anything. Trust me. Bunnies, daisies and hearts are hot this season.

12. Sex? What’s that?

But most importantly…

13. There is nothing more beautiful or precious on this planet than the sweet, tiny angel asleep in your arms, and you realize every time you look at her just how lucky and blessed you really are.

And that none of the other stuff matters in the least.

Now, to Lovely…

As mentioned earlier, Lovely is set in Paris in 1900, and it’s the story of a prostitute named Angelique. Here’s the blurb:

They call me Lovely. But I know I am not.

Once I had another name. Now, as Angelique, I do what I can to please les messieurs. What would they say if they knew I felt no pleasure? To them I am wanton, insatiable. I alone know the truth.

So I am mystified by my reaction to my latest caller. Alexandre. Handsome. Well-bred. With an air of innocence that intrigues me. And true pain in his eyes. A mere kiss on the hand inflames me as never before. In moments this man disconcerts me like no other, and soon I can think of nothing, no one else. And yet, he barely touches me.

I know my true purpose is to mend his wounds, but I wonder what lustful appetites are buried deep within him. I will do what I can to discover his secrets…

Lovely is available now from Carina Press.

Well, the baby is starting to fuss in her cradle, so that means it’s time for me to wrap up. Thanks again to Shelley for having me, and I hope you’ll swing by my blog or shoot me an email and say hello or let me know what you thought of Lovely! You can also follow me on Twitter (I don’t Tweet much yet – I’m still trying to get the hang of it in general. That brain thing, y’know?).


Kris’ Bio:
Kris lives in the wilds of Northern Canada with her two daughters and science geek husband. She spends her time attempting to control household chaos, indulging her crafty side with various knitting, sewing and miscellaneous handmade projects, and creating stories for Carina Press and Ellora’s Cave. Kris has been writing since the age of ten, beginning with a Nancy Drew-style mystery story featuring herself and a couple of her friends. Future leanings became clear, however, when she started penning naughty stories for high-school friends, featuring Scott Baio, Rick Springfield or any member of Duran Duran.

Kris’ blog
Twitter ID
Kris’ email

CONTEST: Everyone who comments on Kris’s post will go into a draw to win a download of Lovely. Tell us about your baby memories, comment on Kris’s baby thirteen or about her new release, Lovely

Postie’s Worst Nightmare

I love receiving mail, not that I receive much these days because email has taken over, but I troop out to our mailbox each day with great anticipation to discover what treasures we’ve received. I’m usually disappointed because most of my mail is nasty bills.

It made me think about mailboxes. They can be freestanding or wall mounted. Some people inset them into brick walls while other people have a door slot instead.

When purchasing a mailbox you need to think about all sorts of things. Do you want them to match your house? How much maintenance will it require? Stainless ones last for ages while powder coated or wooden ones won’t last quite as long. The mail slot should fit an A4 letter folded over. They should have a spot for a newspaper, preferably one that will keep a paper dry. Think about having a lockable one for security.

When you’re installing a mailbox make sure it’s at a height that will save the poor postie’s back and prune back surrounding bushes so he or she won’t have to struggle past prickly undergrowth to deliver your mail. They should bear a clear number to avoid confusion.

Our mailbox is green and everyone who lives in our street has the same style. In the old part of our area, there’s a real mishmash of boxes. Some are decorated while others are plain wooden ones.

When we came back from our recent holiday all our mail had holes in it. There was a snail lurking in our box, busy eating all the envelopes. I made hubby deal with the hungry critter. He mentioned that some mail boxes house cockroaches. I’m praying none decide to move into ours!

Do you have a mailbox? What does it look like?

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