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Thursday, 27 November 2014

Guest Blog: Summerita Rhayne's New Release—Against All Rules

Everyone loves an office romance. Fancy getting swept off our feet by a rich, successful boss? Then Summerita Rhayne's sensual contemporary romance is the book for you...

The efficient PA out of her depth...
Samara knows getting attracted to Tahir is like asking for trouble. Not only is he her boss but he's got divorced recently and has sworn off any commitment. Short term is not on her list but temptation has never been stronger...
The man who doesn't have faith in rainbows anymore
Tahir doesn't believe in enforcing a code of conduct he cannot follow. But Samara might just make him make an exception! An affair at the office might seem a solution to his troubles but how can he avoid treading uncharted territory...?
Here's an extract to whet your appetite:
Coming into her office to ask if everything was ready, Tahir stilled as his gaze found the woman with her neck arched back in abandon in the chair. What the...his jaw went slack focusing on the darting tip of a tongue moistening soft pink flesh and the expression of pure sensual enjoyment on her face. 
This wasn’t his usually staid and prim PA. Muscles clenched low in his body witnessing the sensuous slide of that tongue tip. Like he’d wandered into the live filming of some erotic edgy scene. It only needed her hair unconfined and the prim buttons on her top loosened for the picture of sexy siren to be complete. With her head thrown back like that and her chest thrust forward, full curves straining the buttons, she wasn’t less than a siren now. His gaze moved back to the promise of her lush parted mouth and it required no imagination to picture the feel of it beneath his, to picture capturing that errant tip... He inhaled. Blood rushed through his body at double the speed, surging strategically southward.
Samara became conscious of something different in her surroundings and sat up, guilt flooding her skin with warmth as she saw Tahir looking at her from his six foot vantage point, narrowed brown gaze focusing on her face. The dark brows lifted sardonically, his well shaped mouth with that velvet sheen it had, curving oh so slightly. 
‘I – I was just...’
She stopped, unable to explain and unable to decipher why she felt the temperature of the room increase till a wave of heat bounced around her body. 
He stood feet apart, every inch the inflexible, demanding boss man that he was. He was also jaw dropping handsome, looking like a honed and toned version of a male deo model. Forget the choc√≥, I could settle for a bite of that anytime. That well shaped mouth, with a fuller sensual lower lip, dark eyes, the colour of ground coffee, thickly lashed. Those spikes, he gelled his hair into as a concession to trend. No wonder women chased him any and every chance they got. 
‘I don’t pay you to indulge your time fantasizing in my office.’ He ground out, a curt edge to his deep voice, his eyes still narrowed on her face. 

About the author
Summerita Rhayne loves to write sensual and emotional romance. There's no knowing when some quirky - or sometimes even not so quirky - happening in daily life might trigger her right brain and then she's off craving a new story. She loves writing characters who learn and grow and find their way out of their troubles and emotional hang-ups. Hot, sensual heroes and sassy but sweet heroines mostly fit the bill in her stories. She also believes that a touch of humor never goes amiss in a book.

She divides her time between family, job and writing - and loves winding down with music, movies and the internet!

Or follow via Twitter @SummeritaRhayne
Buy the ebook at :
Thanks for blogging here today, Summerita, and best of luck with Against All Rules.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Writing A Book In A Month, Part Four...

NaNoWriMo 2014 attracts corporate supporters as well as donations from writers. One of these, Webucator, approached writers for their insights into the creative writing process. I'm delighted to get people interested in trying something I've enjoyed all my life, so here's an extended version of the interview I gave to them:

I've written for pleasure all my life, and became a full-time writer in my late twenties. Before that, I worked in finance, then marketing, and finished up in the technical library of a gas-turbine (aero engine) manufacturer. Nobody who read my jet-fighter manuals was interested in happy endings, and the atmosphere wasn't good. Reading was my way of escaping, and I wanted to share that pleasure with others by putting my own stories into words. My wonderful OH offered to support me for one year to see if I could earn my living from writing and luckily, I found I could.

My goals haven't really changed since I began my writing career. I always want to write the best books I can, which help readers to get away from it all for a while. I write about complex men and independent women thrown together in difficult situations, who develop an understanding as they grow toward a satisfying conclusion. Their happy-ever-after is as good for me, as it is for my characters.    

Coming Soon, From Wild Rose Press
I'm very lucky to enjoy writing romance, which is a popular genre. You can find a list of my available titles heremy next book, His Majesty's Secret Passion, is being published soon by Wild Rose Press, and I've also got more titles scheduled for publication in 2015. Of course there's also my NaNoWriMo project, Tasting The Peach. This is a thriller, which is a completely new departure for me so it's a work-in-progress in every sense of the word. Joining up for NaNoWriMo 2014 allowed me to concentrate for one full month on producing the first draft. I'm only formulating the first draft, so there's still some way to go, but I already know Tasting The Peach won't have a conventional happy ending. I'll be posting updates here on my blog about its progress. You can keep in touch by subscribing, using the button above.

I'm lucky in that writing makes me a decent living, but in any case I can't stop. Sad, but true! As well as romance, I've written a lot of non-fiction articles for national magazines. Nature writing has always been  my first love, and I'm still trying to capture the passing seasons with the skill of a Roger Deakin, T.H White or H.E Bates.

My advice to any young person who wants a career as a writer is to find a conventional job that'll pay your bills and give you a grounding in life, but which still allows you time to write after-hours. You'll never produce your best work if you're worrying about making money from it, and you need some life experience before you join a profession whose members spend 90% of their time shut away from reality—you only have to look at politicians in Westminster (with the notable exception of Lord Moynihan, here) to see where that sort of insularity leads! 

Read as widely as you can, and in genres other than your own speciality. Don't just enjoy the story: analyse it, see how the author and editor have made it work. Then apply that insight to your own, original work. Most importantly of all, always write from your heart—readers soon spot insincerity, and they hate it. 

Finally, don't forget to subscribe to my blog (by clicking on the box, top right above) to get my tip sheet of  hints for the career writer.

Monday, 17 November 2014

Writing A Book In A Month, Part Three...

My writing got derailed by vital admin this week, but my NaNoWriMo word count's risen—although in fits and starts.

I've written here and here about how I've been helped by creative workshops organised by the Marcher Chapter of the Romantic Novelists' Association. The most recent one helped me refine the first ten pages of a new project, Tasting The Peach. I'm now turning this embryo into the initial draft of a full-length novel, using National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) 2014 to spur me on. NaNoWriMo relies on donations, and as I write this they've raised $1,034,544.78 so far this year. You can click on the figure to contribute, and help support the organisation.

By Monday morning, 17th November, I'd reached a word count of 33,629. The NaNoWriMo website has a load of exciting data, which makes it just right for an obsessive like me. When I update my daily word count, it calculates my average, and from that how long it will take me to reach the 50,000 word target. As the deadline of 30th November gets closer, the stress increases. My daily average is 1865 now, but I had a bit of a slump midweek.

I've never written a crime novel before, but it didn't me take long to work out they are books which are best written backwards. I started on November 1st with my two main characters fully formed in my mind, but only a vague idea of what was going to happen to them. I opened a file, called it Chapter One, and started to type.

I managed to keep my butterfly mind pinned on DI Josh Miller's unravelling of the conspiracy behind a politician's murder, but the plot twists were coming as much as a shock to me as they were to him. Who knew a bacon roll would play such a pivotal...well, role? I didn't, and I'm supposed to be the all-seeing author. I needed to step back and take a long view of where this book was heading. The trouble was, all I could see was the NaNoWriMo cut-off point of 30th November, hurtling toward me.  

Then, courtesy of the publisher Wild Rose Press, I was given the perfect excuse to take a break from working on Tasting The Peach.  The galley proofs for my next release, His Majesty's Secret Passion, arrived. Concentrating on checking everything was perfect before my new book goes to print gave me the change of pace I needed. My daily word count for NaNoWriMo suffered, but by working late and early each day I squeezed in some forward planning on motivations and motives for Tasting The Peach, too.  This allowed me to catch up, once the proofs were checked. I'm now back on target for NaNoWriMo—just about!

If you're working on your own NaNoWriMo project, how are you getting on? If you'd like to keep up to date with the progress of my next release, His Majesty's Secret Passion, just visit my new author page over on Facebook, and hit the "like" button.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Guest Blog—The Write Romantics' New Release: "Winter Tales"

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Winter-Tales-Stories-Warm-Heart-ebook/dp/B00P84UGHA/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1415125192&sr=1-4&keywords=The+Write+Romantics
The Write Romantics' New Release
I'm delighted to welcome guest bloggers The Write Romantics today, with news of a lovely seasonal book release—just in time for those long winter evenings!  They're having a Facebook launch party here on Saturday 8th November, and all proceeds go to two very good causes, so please pop in and support them.

For all the details, read on...
The Write Romantics is a group of ten writers who are members of, or recent graduates from, the Romantic Novelists Association New Writers Scheme.  When we decided to write an anthology to raise money for charity we asked our writing friends if they would help us out.  We were absolutely delighted when so many fabulous writers agreed to give stories to the anthology. Our guest writers include Annie Lyons, Rhoda Baxter, Samantha Tonge, Sarah Painter, Alison May and Kerry Fisher. 
We wanted to raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust because my nephew, who is 3, suffers from this condition.  When we first came up with the idea of the anthology, he’d just had a two week stay in hospital with a chest infection and we wanted to do something to help find a cure for this terrible illness.  Inspired by the incredible courage of Stephen Sutton we chose the Teenage Cancer Trust as our other charity.  Absolutely all the proceeds from the anthology will go to raising money to support the work of these two amazing charities. 
Sixty Per Cent Of The Write Romantics!
There’s twenty-four stories in the anthology and, although they’re all warm-hearted and likely to leave you smiling, there’s a tremendous variety in them.  There’s wonderful romance in Meet Me at Midnight by Rachael Thomas.  There’s comedy in Loving Mr Perfect by Holly Martin and The Handsome Stranger by Alison May.  Jo Bartlett looks at the challenges of finding love in All the Wrong Places and Muriel’s Christmas Surprise by Jennifer Bohnet shows you’re never too old for a new romance.  There’s also a few old flames, some family reunions, a sexy vicar and lots and lots of snow. 
Here’s an extract from Meet Me At Midnight by Rachael Thomas to give you a taste of what’s in store:
He paused and looked at her, his hand still holding hers, as if they’d known each other forever. ‘Christmas holidays in Wales?’
‘Something like that.’ More like escape from the past, she thought as she looked down, suddenly not quite able to meet his gaze, wishing they were still walking through the field. The intensity in those blue eyes was too much and she wondered if he could see right into her soul and retrieve every secret she’d hidden. ‘I decided last minute to get away from London.’
What It's All About—Smiles!
As far as she was concerned she wasn’t in a hurry to get back to the bustle of London and even though she’d only been in her little cottage for a week, she was glad she’d taken it for six months. If she hadn’t got herself together by then, she probably never would.
His cold fingers lifted her chin, forcing her to look at him once more and the buzz of attraction she’d felt up on the road exploded into something much bigger. She was beginning to wish she had met him in a London bar. Suddenly going back to the bright lights seemed infinitely more attractive, especially if he was going to be there.
‘I’m glad you did.’ His eyes locked with hers, sending shivers of excitement down her spine.
She blinked, not believing what was happening and his hand dropped. Letting out a breath she’d had no idea she was holding she stepped back away from him, acutely aware his other hand still held hers.
Something warm leant against her leg and she looked down as the somewhat bedraggled collie lolled against her, tongue hanging out. It was nice to think the dog trusted her enough to do that, but it also meant there wasn’t any escape from Rob and the way he made her heart flutter. Something she thought it would never do again.
Winter Tales – Stories to Warm Your Heart by The Write Romantics and Friends is available now as an ebook from Amazon by clicking here  The paperback will be available from Amazon by mid November. 

Rachael Thomas’ debut novel, A Deal Before the Altar is published by Mills & Boon and available by clicking here

I thought that was a great post, and a lovely extract. Thanks to The Write Romantics for their blog, and I hope they have lots of success with Winter Tales, with their fund-raising for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the Teenage Cancer Trust, and of course with their individual projects, too.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Writing A Book In A Month, Part Two...

http://media.iwm.org.uk/iwm/mediaLib//138/media-138613/large.jpg
H.M.Bateman, via Wikimedia Commons
...including The Woman Who Said No To A Launch Party, Nibbling Is The Thief Of Time, and Creative Accounting, NaNoWriMo Style...

Last week I told you how I'd signed up for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) 2014, to give me the perfect excuse to shove all other work aside and concentrate on a new project I've been thinking about for ages, but never managed to do much about.

You can read about how I joined here. Once I'd signed up, I became part of the NaNoWriMo community. Although it originated in the US, there are now members worldwide and where there are writers, a support group soon follows. My local NaNoWriMo chapter invited me to a grand launch party in Cheltenham, on Hallowe'en. The idea was to round off a social meet with a countdown to midnight. Then the writing would start. I was Trick or Treating elsewhere, so sadly had to refuse but I can't think I'd have got any writing done. I can't wait to start my project (working title, Tasting The Peach), but I need to get right into the zone before I can write. Complete silence and a total absence of crisps, drinks and nibbles is my recipe for writing productivity (Coo, what a diva! Ed.)  My office is in a part of the house furthest away from the kitchen. I have to shut myself off from everyone and everything, and well away from every distraction (especially food).

I hope everyone got off to a good start with their NaNoWriMo projects. I sat down at my desk at 6:30am on 1st November, and opened a new Scrivener file to begin. You can read about the amazing help (and enjoyable hindrance) Scrivener can be to any writing project here. To write a book in a month is a tough challenge. It takes an average of one thousand, six hundred and sixty seven words every single day to hot the 50K target. That's pretty relentless. NaNoWriMo offers all sorts of help and support, but I started with a shortcut of my own. As well as uploading the character files and background research I did in preparation for November 1st, I cut and pasted in the opening of my embryo novel, which was worked up for the most recent creative workshop organised by the Marcher Chapter of the Romantic Novelists' Association. It was only a few pages, but it was better than siting down to a blank page.

At the end of each day, NaNoWriMo participants log the number of words they've written. No way was I going to claim I'd written nearly five thousand words in one day—and on a Saturday, at that! Apart from anything else, my word count would fall off a cliff on November 2nd, so I ignored my uploaded figure, and entered the words I actually wrote on the day.

So as at the start of Monday, 3rd November my total word-count is 6,129, although I've only written a daily average of 1,700 words.

My NaNoWriMo efforts are likely to be derailed as I've had some very exiting news. To be among the first to find out what it is, mail me at christinahollis(at)hotmail.co.uk. As an incentive, I'll include an extract from Tasting The Peach.

PS: Don't forget to change (at) to @ in my email address.