Posted at Jan 21, 2014 8:16 pm
I’m very excited to share the summerluscious cover of my next book, THE BEST MEDICINE! I wish it could come out and play right now since so many of us are shivering from this abominable polar vortex! But, alas, this book comes out in May. Like the flowers and the sunshine. You just have to wait for it. (But feel free to pre-order it!)
Here is a little taste:
Everyone in Bell Harbor thinks career-minded plastic surgeon Evelyn Rhoades needs a husband. Everyone, that is, except for Evelyn…sort of. Even if she did want a husband (which she doesn’t…most of the time), she’d never let something as intangible as fate determine who she marries. No, if she’s going to find someone to spend her life with, she’ll do it scientifically: with a carefully crafted list of criteria and an Internet dating site.
But when intoxicated, law-breaking Tyler Connelly crashes into her life by way of a stolen Jet Ski, unruly emotions defy common sense. Sure, he’s sexy, charming, and determined to win Evelyn’s affection, but all evidence points to him being the worst possible choice. He’s too young for her. Too irresponsible. Too underemployed. And, oh yeah, he’s her patient.
But Tyler knows firsthand how the best-laid plans can crumble under the weight of destiny. Now all he needs to do is to teach Evelyn that, in matters of the heart, love often supersedes logic.
So, there you have it. A little visit back in Bell Harbor, just in time for summer! Happy reading, all!
Posted at Dec 5, 2013 4:45 pm
***I originally posted this in 2011 on Peanut Butter on the Keyboard (peanutbutteronthekeyboard.com/2012/12/11/guest-mom-tracy-brogan-the-elf-on-the-shelf-friend-or-foe) but it’s that time of year again and it seems like the Elf is back for many of you. Good luck with that…***
When December rolls around, most of us start thinking about the holidays. That most wonderful time of the year when we trim the tree and light the log, wrap the gifts and make that nog. We want to get our holly jolly on, and have a cup of cheer. (At our house, cheer tastes very much like Bailey’s on the rocks.)
Yet for many of us, December is also the season of house guests. Some are welcomed with glee and arms flung wide. Others are met with slightly less enthusiasm. The nit-picky mother-in-law perhaps, or the ubiquitous crazy uncle. You know the one I’m talking about – the uncle who never shuts the door all the way when he uses the bathroom. And he doesn’t refer it as “the bathroom,” either. He just calls it “The Toilet.”
But at this most glorious time of year, when beloved (and less-beloved) relatives descend upon us, many homes must also contend with that most insidious of houseguests. The one who requires daily attention. The one who can scarcely move from place to place without your assistance.
You guessed it.
I’m talking about… the Elf on the Shelf.
I have a love/hate relationship with this guy.
Well, not hate, exactly. That’s a strong word. I hate prejudice, and world hunger, and shopping for a swim suit. When it comes to the Elf on the Shelf, let’s just say I have a love/don’t-love relationship.
To explain why, let me begin with a little history.
This fuzzy, flannel peeping Tom hit the scenes in 2005 as part of a picture book set. THE ELF ON THE SHELF: A CHRISTMAS TRADITION was written by the mother/daughter team of Carol Aebersold and Chanda Bell. After being refused by several publishers, they decided to self-publish. Yay! Good for them. Mark that in the “love” column. Since then, they have sold over 2.5 million copies! More love for them on that! I’m always happy for a writer who hits it big – even if it’s not me, or someone I know well enough to borrow a million dollars from.
Now, the premise of this story is simple. Each December, the Elf shows up to spy on your children and then report back to Santa on whether they have been “naughty” or “nice.” Mark that in the “love” column, as well. I appreciate any type of big-brother-esque manipulation to ensure obedient behavior from our offspring. After all, a mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do to keep the kids in line. How else is she supposed to write, cook, shower, or make a martini? So I have no issue with telling my kids they’re being observed by a magical, omniscient being who holds the key to how many presents they’ll get on Christmas.
The disadvantage of this Elf is that, as the story goes, each night he flies back to the North Pole to submit his report, then he returns to your house the next morning and parks his little, red-felt backside in a brand new spot. That means I have to remember to move him. Every single night.
And I have to find approximately twenty-four unique spots since he shows up on December 1st and doesn’t vanish until Christmas Eve. Definitely a mark in the NOT-love column. I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve gotten out of bed at 2:00 a.m. after realizing I’d forgotten to move the darn Elf.
Thinking myself oh-so-clever, I even tried putting a reminder my cell phone calendar – only to have my husband change our settings to the icloud so my note, “Move the Elf,” showed up on my kids’ ipods. Sometimes sharing isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
A few years ago, my oldest caught on to the whole Elf scheme. You’d think this would have made things easier since she could help me trick my littler one. But, oh, no. Instead, Thing One repeatedly incited Thing Two into a search and rescue frenzy with the intensity typically reserved for victims of a burning building or a sinking ship. This, of course, led to the great “Why is the Elf hiding in Mommy’s bra drawer?” debacle of 2010.
Truth is, the Elf is a pain.
So why do I do it?
Because he is also magical. Kids don’t see him as a spy. They see him as a visiting loved one. A friend to confide in. A link directly to Santa and all their Christmas wishes. And like Santa, he represents an opportunity to step outside the constraints of reality and visit a place of happy dreams. As a writer, especially a romance writer, I’m all about the place of happy dreams. I would live there all the time if I could. So, if I can create that world for my kids, even for a few, wonderful weeks, I’ll do it. It’s the same reason we do Easter baskets, and have leprechauns visit around St. Patrick’s Day. My mother did all that silly stuff for me and it made my childhood lovely. If I can give that sense of wonder and fantasy to my own kids, it’s worth a little extra effort.
Perhaps the ultimate irony is that as I was working on this post, my littlest came into my office. She sat down in the chair and said, “I know you’re busy but I need to ask you something.”
A look at her face told me it was something serious.
“Is Santa real?”
Dun, dun, dunnnnn….
Really? She’s asking me this just as I’m typing words like “magical” and “fantasy?”
But she’s eleven and her street smart friends have been telling stories. And her older sister has been dropping hints like atom bombs. So, just now, I told my baby girl the truth about Santa. All of it. I could see the wheels and cogs in her mind spinning.
“What about the Elf? Is that you, too? You can tell me the truth. I can take it.”
So I did tell her.
And she could take it.
She listened to the news stoically, with maturity, while I puddled up like a little girl.
Now, it looks like I don’t have to move The Elf on the Shelf anymore. But the fact is, I think I’ll miss him more than my kids will.
Posted at Nov 20, 2013 6:48 pm
I have been sadly remiss in blogging! Turns out moving from one house to another is a special kind of joy/misery that takes up a lot of time. Not to mention creating frequent, extended bouts of having (*gasp!*) no internet connection!
But the good news is THE BEST MEDICINE, a Bell Harbor Novel, will be available May 13th, 2014! I’m excited about revisiting some old friends in that story and hope readers are, too! I’ll be sharing more about that over the coming weeks.
In other news, CRAZY LITTLE THING is now available in German. It will soon be available in French. Merci!
HIGHLAND SURRENDER is being translated into German and Japanese. Can’t wait to see that!
And speaking of HIGHLAND SURRENDER, here is a picture of me winning the Booksellers Best Award in the Historical category. What an honor! I’m was also thrilled to win the Golden Quill contest for both HIGHLAND SURRENDER and CRAZY LITTLE THING.
And here I am with two of my fabulous critique partners, Kimberly Kincaid and Jennifer McQuiston at RWA nationals – where I did not win a RITA Ah, well. It was an amazing conference and I’m already looking forward to next year.
So, thank you, dear readers, reviewers and book buyers, for making my books part of your day!
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Posted at Jul 30, 2013 7:41 pm
HOLD ON MY HEART is earning great reviews! Thanks to each of you who took the time to post a review on Amazon or Goodreads, or reviewed my books on your blog. I appreciate your effort!
And an extra big THANKS to you wonderful readers who recommend my work to a friend, a relative, or a co-worker. As long as you keep reading, I will certainly keep writing.
In fact, I’m excited to share I have two more Bell Harbor books on the way! Expect THE BEST MEDICINE in the spring of 2014.
In other news, I’m honored to report that CRAZY LITTLE THING earned 1st Place in the Golden Quill contest, and HIGHLAND SURRENDER won 1st Place in both the Golden Quill and the Book Sellers Best contest. It’s been a good summer, and it’s not over yet!
So take your lounge chair down to the shore with one of my books and enjoy the read!
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Posted at May 6, 2013 6:41 pm
A few weeks ago I was thrilled to hear that CRAZY LITTLE THING was nominated by Romance Writers of America for a RITA award in the Best First Book category. (I’m still thrilled!)
Now I’m equally excited to learn that both CRAZY LITTHE THING and HIGHLAND SURRENDER have been nominated in the prestigious Golden Quill Contest sponsored by the Desert Rose Chapter of RWA. Having read the fabulous work of most of the other nominees, I can say without hesitation it’s an honor to be among such talent! Best of luck to all the finalists!
Posted at Apr 17, 2013 3:15 pm
That’s not a very clever title, but I’m saving up the clever for my current work in progress! My next book, HOLD ON MY HEART releases June 25th and I can’t wait! In the meantime, I’d like to share some lovely reviews that my wonderful readers have posted for CRAZY LITTLE THING and HIGHLAND SURRENDER! Thanks so much for the support and encouragment.
For HIGHLAND SURRENDER:
- Tracy Brogan is an excellent writer who develops honest characters you can identify with, even though the story takes place in far away Scotland and centuries ago. Highland Surrender is a wonderful romance, filled with passion, action and intrigues. I enjoyed this bok very much, and look forward to more romances from this gifted author.
- This book drew me in so quickly and I was unable to put it down. Lovely story with wonderful twists and turns. Made my heart happy
- Excellent and would buy this authors work again. Read all the way through in one day.
- Best historical romance I’ve read since the Outlander series. I look forward to more like this soon by this author.
- The story has a lot of turns and twists to keep the reader engaged in the story. You will think you have the story figured out and you find yourself being wrong. I enjoyed the book.
- I love historical romance novels and this was a terrific story. It was a fast read and held my interest till the end. Although this was my first read by Brogan I plan to read other books by her.
For CRAZY LITTLE THING:
- This was a funny, sweet, emotional ride that ended too soon. I could not put this book down until I was finished. I will definitely read more of Tracy Brogan, and will probably read this book again.
- We selected this book as our Prime Membership free book of the month. After being startled at my wife’s reaction I believe we’ll buy this one. I’ve heard her chuckle and giggle at books before but not the often laugh out loud reactions Tracy Brogan’s Crazy Little Thing did for her. Now its my turn as my wife explores more of Ms. Brogan’s works.
- Finally, a book that I will finish reading. This book is so enjoyable. It’s not so much the story, it is the way it is written. Never have I laughed out loud so many times when reading a book. Unexpected chuckles from me cause my husband to Look over to see just what’s so funny?
- I haven’t read a book that made me laugh out loud in a long time. The characters are real and hilarious. I would recommend this book to anyone needing a little cheering up.
- Highly recommending this book to friends and will search out anything else written by Tracy Brogan.
- I had so much fun reading this book! The characters are hilarious and their relationships with one another are endearing. I especially love Fontaine and his spontaneity, and gotta love Dody! She is such a unique character.. The story is light but yet lovely.. It did give me warm feelings…
- Funny, sweet and a delightful read. Several times I found myself laughing out loud. I will be recommending this one to my girlfriends!!
- Couldn’t stop reading it! Moments where dialogue was laugh out loud hilarious. You’ll cheer for Sadie by the end. Highly recommend.
- A great lighthearted read, I teared up few times, and laughed out loud several times, thoroughly enjoyed to the end!
- Really enjoyed this book. Fun read and there were several times I laughed out loud Unfortunately for my husband it was really late at night while he was trying to sleep !
- What an amazingly, fun read! Sassy, energetic and a complete laugh out loud kind of book. Real life characters that make you want to join them on the beach!
Thanks for the warm, fuzzzy feelings!!
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Posted at Mar 29, 2013 1:05 am in A Most Devilish Rogue, A Most Scandalous Proposal, Ashlyn Macnamara, Daniel Day-Lewis, debut author, Gerard Butler, historical romance, Richard Armitage, Sean Bean, tracy brogan
Welcome to ON THE RECORD where I chat with romance authors about their favorite topics, which usually includes writing but almost always includes handsome men!
Welcome, Ashlyn Macnamara, debut author of the fun and sexy a MOST SCANDALOUS PROPOSAL, which released on February 26, 2013!
TB: Today, we’ll start with an easy question first. Ash, what is A MOST SCANDALOUS PROPOSAL all about?
AM: The short version is it’s Sense and Sensibility with sex–although it’s not a completely faithful retelling of Jane Austen. It can’t be. It has love scenes! It also takes place in Mayfair for the most part, rather than the country, and the characters are possibly a bit higher up the social rank than Jane wrote about. Not so much country gentry but relatives (some more distant than others) of titled people. On the other hand it does feature two romances, and the plot intertwines around both of them. I feel it’s important to mention this, because the blurb on the back of my book might lead you to believe this is your usual Regency with one main romance.
TB: I love the duality of having two heroines. Although I know the book is primarily about one sister, it was refreshing to see an alternate viewpoint within the story. Very clever you is!
AM: Why, thank you! *Curtseys (and probably trips. Pretend you didn’t see that.)* By the way, I’ve only just noticed my initials spell out AM, and I am *so* not a morning person. Why didn’t I think of that when I chose my penname?
TB: Typically you Beau Monde gals are hardcore with your historical accuracy, particularly with regard to social customs. What are some constraints about this time period that impact your writing?
AM: What a brilliant excuse to segue into my second book! See, Isabelle, the heroine of my second book is a Regency-era single mother. As you can imagine, depending on a woman’s social rank, having an illegitimate child wasn’t exactly the done thing. And I wanted to portray realistically what might have happened to someone like that. Oh, I probably could have made things worse for her, by forcing her to sell her favors for a scrap of bread here and there and dying horrifically of some venereal disease, but then I wouldn’t have much of a HEA. But she does pay a price in her reduced circumstances, and even her neighbors in the village where she’s settled don’t give her much of a break.
TB: It’s true. Venereally ever after does NOT have the same ring to it. So I’m glad you kept your heroine STD free. Tell me about your heroes. Do have images in your mind about what he looks like? Do you have a celebrity muse?
AM: Oh dear. I have several… Benedict from my first book bears a striking resemblance to Gerard Butler. Highgate, also from my first book (since there are two heroes), might possibly remind readers of Alan Rickman. George Upperton from my second book is more along the lines of Russell Crowe, only younger and not quite so scruffy. Muttonchop sideburns aside, they weren’t too big on facial hair during the era. Oh, and if my cover model is to be believed, he also has buns of steel. J
I’m working on a new series right now, and my current hero may just look a bit like Sean Bean. But I’ve also been thinking of the book after that. See, I’ve been glomming the BBC series Robin Hood on Netflix for one reason and one reason alone: Sir Tall, Dark, and Brooding himself, Guy of Gisborne, AKA Richard Armitage. So if you notice one of my upcoming heroes has long dark hair, green eyes, and a deep, gravelly voice, you’ll know where I got it from.
TB: Why, I declare, my dear Miss Macnamara, what lovely taste you have. Sean Bean was a favorite of mine from days past and Gerard Butler has graced MANY pages without knowing it! And ahhhh…. Richard Armitage. Perfect blend of brood, but humorous, too. Bright green eyes AND an accent? Lawd, where are my smelling salts? You’re not the first historical writer with a taste for R.A. Henry Cavill is a favorite of many, as well. I used to adore Adrian Paul from the Highlander TV series! But, alas, I heard him do an interview once where he was very ungracious and it ruined the illusion. Plus he’s cockney!!! Didn’t see that one coming!! Now, on to something else. What five things would you take to a deserted island if you were going to be there for say…. One month?
AM: Richard Armitage, Sean Bean, Gerard Butler, Aidan Turner, and Daniel Day-Lewis as he appeared in Last of the Mohicans—not that I have a thing for men with long hair. And I want to stay more than a month. That’s not cheating is, it?
TB: Now that’s what I call Fantasy Island!! I’d like to visit there myself! But there is AidAn Turner, and then there is AidEn Turner. I always mix them up but either is mighty fine! And I loooove the movie Last of the Mohicans. James Fenimore Cooper had it all wrong. Hollywood made that story so much better. (All the dead historical fiction writers are rolling in their graves right now!)
AM: I don’t know. I think Mark Twain would agree with you… Although in true romance fashion, I would have loved for Alice and Uncas to have survived and had their HEA.
TB: Ah, yes. Uncus! He did not hold up too well in real life! And now DDL looks like Lincoln. But they’ll be forever young and beautiful in our books and in the movies. Well, Ms. Macnamara, this has been a lovely chat. But might I add that no trip to a tropical island is complete without a great book to read. Such as…A MOST SCANDALOUS PROPOSAL! Here is wishing you loads and loads of success. I loved that book and I know everyone else will, too. Thanks for visiting with me today!
AM: Thank you so much for inviting me. It’s been fun. And I can’t wait to read HOLD ON MY HEART! I adored both HIGHLAND SURRENDER and CRAZY LITTLE THING, especially for the humor laced throughout your contemporary work.
TB: Why thank you. Just for that, you may visit me again someday.
Ashlyn Macnamara writes Regency romances with a dash of wit and a hint of wicked. She considers this writing gig her mid-life crisis, but figures it’s less dangerous than hang-gliding or sky-diving. Despite her insistence on looking toward the past, she can be found on Facebook and Twitter.
Posted at Mar 26, 2013 5:39 pm in Awards, GH, RITA, Romance Writers of America
It’s an honor just be nominated.
I know that’s a cliche, and we writers are supposed to avoid those… like the plague…
But it happens to be true.
Today, my debut novel CRAZY LITTLE THING, was nominated for the Romance Writers of America RITA Award for BEST FIRST BOOK. I’ve seen the line up of fabulous writers sharing the category with me and I can sincerely say, in that fine complany, it IS an honor just to be nominated.
Thanks readers, and thanks judges for enjoying this book! Now on to Atlanta!
Posted at Mar 22, 2013 1:05 am in contemporary romance, debut author, Foodie romance, Kimberly Kincaid, Love On The Line, Sweetheart Cookie Swap, tracy brogan
Welcome to ON THE RECORD where I chat with romance authors about their favorite topics, which usually includes writing but almost always includes handsome men! Today I’m thrilled to be chatting with debut author Kimberly Kincaid!
TB: Kimberly, you’ve just released your first novella! Tell me about it!
KK: LOVE ON THE LINE is the story of a gruff police detective injured in the line of duty, and the heart-on-her-sleeve personal chef who throws him for the loop of his life as he recovers. It was a blast to write because the characters (Violet and Noah) were so opposite, yet deep down , they were a perfect match. I really loved watching that transformation!
TB: And readers will love it, too! How does writing a novella differ from drafting a full length novel?
KK: It’s deceptive, because you’d think novellas are easier since they’re only a third of the word count. But oh no! Just because they’re shorter doesn’t mean they’re “less”. You’ve got to get all your story elements, characters arcs, and plot events into a limited space. It’s like packing for a month-long glamorous vacation, and all you’ve got is one suitcase. It takes a lot of moving and shifting to get it just right!
TB: Having shared a hotel room with you, I know you do not travel light so the packing analogy is very apt! How long did this novella take you to write?
KK: I am notorious for the “feast or famine” method of writing (sorry for the foodie pun!) It took me nearly ten days and two false starts to get LOVE ON THE LINE plotted out. But once I typed Chapter One, I wrote and edited the entire draft in 30 days.
TB: Yes. You did. And I hate you a little bit for that! Just kidding, of course. I know it took “awhile” (in Kim time!) to choose this story as your first novella but once you started, you ripped through it at an amazing pace. Do you have writing rituals or can you write anytime, anyplace?
KK: I am actually really uptight about writing in a vacuum—it must be pin-drop quiet, otherwise nothing’s getting done. Otherwise, no. I can write in a ball gown (I highly recommend this, actually) or in my ratty PJ’s (I recommend this even more though).
TB: Long live the ratty pajamas! What are you working on now?
KK: I am working on a companion novella to LOVE ON THE LINE, featuring Violet’s brother Jason as the hero. I’ve also got a book proposal in the works for my foodie series with Kensington.
TB: You currently have a three-book series with Kensington, and an anthology coming. What are the titles of those books?
KK: I’m thrilled to have collaborated on a Christmas anthology with Donna Kauffman and Kate Angel, titled THE SUGAR COOKIE SWEETHEART SWAP, which kicks off my Pine Mountain foodie series. That releases in October. My first full-length novel, TURN UP THE HEAT, will follow in February 2014.
TB: I cannot wait to see them in print! What is something you know now that you did not know a year ago?
KK: There are conservatively a billion answers to this question J But if I had to pick just one, I’d say I’ve learned that patience goes a long, long way in writing and publishing. When I first signed with my agent in 2011, contemporary romance was a hard sell. But we hung in there, and when the tides turned, it happened!
TB: Where would you like to be in five years?
KK: Right here, doing exactly this, only more! I am in this for the long haul. As long as the stories whisper to me, I’m going to want to write them.
TB: That’s a great answer. I know not everyone gets to do a job they love so I’m super grateful to be where we are! What would you tell an aspiring writer?
KK: One word, and it’s the kind of word you want to write on sticky notes and slap onto every available surface in your house. PERSEVERE. Rejection happens. You’ll fall down a lot (and here it is—everyone. Falls. Down. Anyone who says she doesn’t isn’t being truthful with you!) Get back up. Believe it will happen. PERSEVERE.
TB: Amen to that. Not only do we fall down. Sometimes we are pushed! But you have to get back up! Describe your writing space.
KK: My office is the only room in my entire house that is not beige. It is cranberry red (hello, color of love, and all!) I have books from floor to ceiling on one entire wall, and an idea board over my laptop with all my “stuff” (pictures, recipes, sticky notes with plot ideas) for whatever I’m writing at any given time. Right now there’s a lot of Taylor Kinney going on up there. What can I say? I have a little crush!
TB: Excellent choice. There is more than one reason they call that show Chicago Fire! Okay, random question time. Do you have a pet? Tell me about it?
KK: We are ridiculously pet-free in my house because my kids have bad allergies. But that doesn’t stop them from asking if we can get a dog or cat every single day!
TB: That’s pretty funny that your pet-peeve involves a pet! Describe your favorite pair of shoes. (I know this is going to be a tough one for you!)
KK: Picking one favorite pair is like picking your favorite child. You really can’t! But my signature pair of shoes is pair of lipstick red patent leather Mary Jane pumps. I wear them whenever I need to feel fantastic about life. It always works!
TB: I love those shoes. And that picture. If you could have dinner with any fictional character, who would you choose?
KK: Jo Bourne’s Adrian, from The Black Hawk. Dark, dangerous, handsome, *and* can teach me all kinds of stealthy spy stuff? Come on! What girls says no to that?
TB: Oh, good choice! You have to love a man who could assassinate a bad guy with a butter knife. Is your perfect man: Alpha or Beta? (I already know your answer!)
KK: Capital-A-Alpha. Every time!
TB: Yep! I was right! And I’m with you on that. Alpha with a side of Beta. What do you usually think of when you first wake up, or when you’re trying to fall asleep?
KK: I am about to out myself as a writing Fembot here, but I noodle plotlines. A lot. And it is the reason I have a whiteboard next to my bed.
TB: I don’t have the white board but I definitely fall asleep while plotting! I will dream full stories. Once I even critiqued my own dream while I was in the middle of it! I wonder if all writers do this? Shifting gears again. Where would you like to travel to?
KK: As a foodie, I am down with anywhere the food is good, and local food? Even better! I would love to do a food and wine tour of Italy, and am dying to eat freshly-picked pineapple in Hawaii.
TB: What food can you not live without?
KK: This is a changeable answer for me, but I am a huge fan of food that comes directly from the earth. Peaches still warm from the sun, perfect, fat heirloom tomatoes, crisp, tart apples…I could live on produce all by itself, I mean it!
TB: You’re making me hungry. I’m going to go have a snack and re-read LOVE ON THE LINE!
Kimberly Kincaid writes contemporary romance that splits the difference between sexy and sweet. When she’s not sitting cross-legged in an ancient desk chair known as “The Pleather Bomber”, she can be found practicing obscene amounts of yoga, whipping up anything from enchiladas to éclairs in her kitchen, or curled up with her nose in a book. Kimberly is a 2011 RWA Golden Heart® finalist who lives (and writes!) by the mantra that food is love. Kimberly resides in northern Virginia with her wildly patient husband and their three daughters.
BLURB FOR LOVE ON THE LINE:
Violet Morgan puts the personal in personal chef, catering to clients who want the full cooking experience rather than a culinary drop-and-dash. But when her brother’s police detective partner is injured in the line of duty and needs help during recovery, she makes an exception. Violet lost her father to the job seven years ago, and worries for her brother’s safety every day. The last thing she wants is to get up-close with her brother’s career-cop partner…again.
For Noah Blackwell, being a detective isn’t just a lifestyle, it’s a legacy. So when he’s forced to take mandatory leave and deal with the trauma amnesia keeping him from identifying his shooter, it’s a literal case of adding insult to injury— and now he’s got to deal with an unwanted culinary caregiver on top of it. Never mind that he and Violet shared a steamy, secret kiss last New Year’s Eve. She rejects everything related to the job, and Noah’s not about to be distracted from recovering his memory and getting back to what he does best. No matter how pretty Violet is.
Despite their differences, Violet and Noah share a surprising bond in the kitchen that grows into something neither of them expect. But as Noah heals and their feelings for each other extend from the kitchen to the bedroom, Violet knows she must make an impossible choice. She may wear her heart on her sleeve when it comes to food, but can she risk it all to put love on the line?
Posted at Mar 19, 2013 1:29 am in Caught on Camera, contemporary romance, Ex on the Beach, Kim Law, Kindle, Serials, Sugar Springs, tracy brogan
Today on On The Record, I’m chatting with the fabulous Kim Law, author of SUGAR SPRINGS, CAUGHT ON CAMERA, and the serialized EX ON THE BEACH. Keep reading and find out how you might win a Kindle Fire HD!!
TB: Kim, it’s so great to be chatting with you today! I’ve heard a rumor you are writing something called a serial. What’s that about?
KL: It’s about foreplay At least, that’s what I always think. Serials are full length books that are released in episodes. So every two weeks, readers are getting another 30-40 pages of the book until the full book is released. To make it really successful, the author’s goal is to leave each episode on a cliffhanger. That means the reader will then have two weeks of tittering anticipation as they wait for the next episode. Thus…foreplay. J
TB: Oh, my! That is intriguing! People today are so accustomed to instant gratification that the allure of delayed gratification gives the book an air of mystery! And everyone loves a cliffhanger. How does this format impact your writing style?
KL: Well, I always try to leave chapters and scene with some sort of hook, but with episodes, I have to refocus and make sure I leave that last scene with a much bigger reason to make the reader want to turn the page! I also have to make it fit within the word count of the episode, so that gets a little tricky. Some episodes are a little longer and some a little shorter, but I still have to keep it within the right range. That impacts what I do/don’t do in some of my scenes.
And as for everyone loving a cliffhanger…some people don’t. Some are just brutal when they get one! After this last episode, I got a comment “Can they just have sex already!” There was more to it than that, but it wasn’t all polite. So suffice it to say, that person was not pleased with the cliffhanger strategy. (Yet, each time I hear people railing about the injustice of not having more to read… RIGHT NOW, I do feel I’m doing a good job
TB: There is something to be said for leaving the readers wanting more! The title of your first serial is EX ON THE BEACH. I love that title! What is this story about?
KL: Thanks! I get to take credit for that title, though it’s the only good one I’ve ever come up with! EX is a fun, sexy contemporary about a wedding planner who has to pull off the wedding of the summer to save her business…then discovers that the ex who once left her at the altar is the best man!
TB: Titles are devilish little necessities. But it’s rare to find on that really captures the essence of the story so good job with that one! And what a great story premise! Do you consider yourself a thorough plotter who knows how a story will end before you begin writing, or are you a seat-of-your-pantser who just takes two characters, puts them in a virtual room together, and waits to see what happens?
KL: Funny you asked that the way you did. I’m a total plotter. Throw me two characters together in a room and I’ll sit and think about them for a week. And then I’ll make them do something. So yes, I figure out characters and I plot like a loon. HOWEVER, things always change as I’m writing, and I never…ever, ever, ever…know exactly how a book is going to end until I get to the ending. It’s frustrating, and that’s the part I hate writing the most. I’m currently STUCK on the ending of EX (did I also mention the episodes start releasing as the author is still writing the book? *sigh*) because I don’t know what they need to do!
TB: I’m a plotter, too. To my detriment. Whenever someone says, “How long did it take you to write that book?” I usually say it took three months to write, but about six months to THINK about! Here at On The Record, we like to talk about men. Do you “cast” your books with real life individuals, celebrities maybe? Or even photographs of hunky men? And maybe women, too, since not every heroine can look exactly like us. Do you create story boards?
KL: You know, I think I’m one of the few who does not cast my heroes. I do tend to look up celebrities for my heroines, but rarely do I think one looks like a certain person. It’s more of, they have this person’s hair and this person’s eyes, etc. And I have no idea why I don’t find hot, hunky men to be my heroes. Apparently I have an active enough imagination on that front And no, no story board. Unless you want to count sticky notes with scene notes on them. But that’s more plotting. I don’t do the picture thing. I’ve simply found it doesn’t help me.
TB: I’m switching gears here. It’s random question time. What five non-sentient things would you take to a deserted island?
KL: Wow. That requires thinking. I’m on deadline. There is no thinking! OK, I’m going to pretend my deserted island has electricity. Can I do that? I would take a fully loaded Kindle, my Kindle charger, a truckload of mint M&Ms, a freezer to keep my M&Ms frozen because that’s how I prefer to eat them, and hmmmm….I guess another truckload of wine. German Riesling J Boring, huh? Mint M&M’s, white wine, and books and I’m a happy girl!
TB: Actually I think you’re on to something lovely here. Books, alcohol, and chocolate. Sounds like perfection to me! Speaking of perfection, describe your perfect writing day.
KL: Glad to know I’m not the only one who could live on such! My perfect writing day…they rarely happen because I tend to procrastinate too much, but my perfect writing day would be me waking (without an alarm clock or the blasted cat meowing at me!!) at about 7:00. Then I sit down and write, churning out a couple thousand beautiful words, knocking off about 11 or so. I’ll then break for lunch, maybe take a nice walk out in the sunshine, then handle a few business related tasks. Next I shower, make myself look like I haven’t just spent the morning in my PJs, and sit down for a couple more hours to knock out a thousand more beautiful words. End of day, greet the husband when he gets home, chill together in the evening. Ahh…it would be a nice life. It’s rare. You’ll usually find me at the computer well into the evening, and sometimes throughout the night. And I won’t even talk about how I’ve forgotten what a “weekend” is!
TB: Ah, yes, “the weekend.” That sort of loses its meaning when you work at home, and like many writers, it sounds like you don’t always have a set schedule. Now before we say goodbye, tell me about this contest and how people can be entered into the drawing to win a Kindle Fire HD!!
KL: To encourage readers to give serials a try, Cheryl Bolen, Patrice Wilton, and I are giving away a Kindle Fire HD on April 1st. To enter, all readers need to do is come to our website and answer an easy question about our serialized book. Go to all three of our websites, answer all three of our questions, and be entered three times!
TB: That sounds fun!!! Here are the links to their pages:
Thanks for joining me today, Kim!!
Biography: Kim Law wrote her first story, “The Gigantic Talking Raisin,” in elementary school. Although it was never published, it was enough to whet her appetite for a career in writing. First, however, she would try her hand at a few other passions: baton twirling, softball, and music, to name a few. Voted Bookworm and Most Likely to Succeed in high school, she went on to earn a college degree in mathematics. Law spent years working as a computer programmer and raising her son, and she now devotes her time and energy to writing romance novels (none of which feature talking raisins). She is a past winner of the Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart Award and currently serves as president for her local RWA chapter. A native of Kentucky, she lives with her husband in Middle Tennessee.