Saturday Spotlight – An Earl of Her own by Heather Boyd

AEOHO HB BannerAn Earl Of Her Own

Saints and Sinners series (Book 3)

By Heather Boyd

Heather is giving away a print edition of The Duke and I and A Gentleman’s Vow during the tour. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Remember there is a chance to enter everyday so be sure to follow the Blog Tour. You may find the tour schedule and locations here https://goo.gl/qw8v5J

About An Earl Of Her Own:

Marriage is about finding that special someone you want to annoy for the rest of your life!

Rebecca Warner’s devotion to her family is the perfect distraction from the loneliness of widowhood. Not that she’d ever admit a need for someone special in her life after her husband’s betrayal. With the responsibility of arranging her sister’s wedding falling into her lap, Rebecca has no time for a certain maddening earl bent on seducing her—until he proves her most ardent ally.

For Adam Croft, Earl of Rafferty, what began as an amusing pursuit—shocking Rebecca Warner—becomes something deeper when he recognizes how perfect a wife and mother she would make. Adam’s keenly aware of his loneliness…and that his habit to curb it with drink lost him Becca’s respect. He’ll happily change his ways to win her approval, but what more can he do to win her love?

Release Date: February 12, 2019

Length: approx. 300 pages

Heat: steamy regency romance

Digital ISBN: 978-1-925239-51-5

Print ISBN: 978-1-925239-52-2

ASIN: B07KGLD7RB

AppleBooks ID: 1437218392

Book Links:

~♥~♥~♥~♥~♥~♥~

AEOHO_DC 200Excerpt:

“You are hurt, worse than you want to say,” Rebecca Warner whispered.

Her soft green eyes were filled with real concern, something Adam had never expected to see on her face. “Well, that is disappointing.”

“Disappointing?” Rebecca immediately began searching through his hair for the wound, and he chose to imagine it a sensual caress until she spoke again. “You have a gash to your head that has bled. Dear God, you could have died.”

“Always looking on the bright side,” he murmured, and then noticed how close the lady was to his body. He inhaled slowly, delighted in this unexpectedly rare treat. Mrs. Warner had never been the friendliest sort. “You smell nice.”

“Really, Rafferty,” she chided. She suddenly slipped her hand inside his coat, rummaged in his pockets and began to dab at his head with the handkerchief she found there. “This is hardly the time to worry about my perfume.”

“As you say, I could have been killed. Seems like an appropriate time for noticing the little things in life that please me.” He felt pain and hissed. Eager for a distraction, he dropped his gaze to her shoulder—now bare of the shawl, which had fallen away unnoticed by the lady. The respectable garment Rebecca had worn to church, so stylish and modest, was less so now thanks to the accident. The struggle out of the carriage seemed to have ripped the seam apart, and her pale skin looked very soft and inviting. He curled his fingers into the skirt of her gown and held it. “Lovely.”

She drew back to peer into his eyes again, and then she glanced down at his fist. “What are you doing?”

What was he doing? Adam had no idea, but he wasn’t of a mind to stop.
Saints and Sinners series:

SaintsandSinners_seriesBook 1: The Duke and I (Nicolas and Gillian) – https://amzn.to/2Thss0C

Book 2: A Gentleman’s Vow (Gideon and Jessica) – https://amzn.to/2Tc3kso

Book 3: An Earl of Her Own (Adam and Rebecca) – https://amzn.to/2G2HCmT

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HeatherBoyd author photoAbout the Author:

Determined to escape the Aussie sun on a scorching camping holiday, Heather picked up a pen and notebook from a corner store and started writing her very first novel—Chills. Eight years later, she is the author of over thirty romances and publisher of several anthologies too. Addicted to all things tech (never again will Heather write a novel longhand) and fascinated by English society of the early 1800s, Heather spends her days getting her characters in and out of trouble and into bed together (if they make it that far). She lives on the edge of beautiful Lake Macquarie, Australia with her trio of mischievous rogues (husband and two sons) along with one rescued cat whose only interest in her career is that it provides him with food on demand. You can find details of Heather’s work at http://www.heather-boyd.com

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Saturday Spotlight – Only a Good Man Will Do by Dee S. Knight

 

oagmwd dsk bannerOnly A Good Man Will Do

The Good Man Series (Book 1)

By Dee S. Knight

♥♥ GiveAway ♥♥

Dee is giving away an ebook of Naval Maneuvers and a $10 Amazon card to giveaway during the tour. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Remember you may enter every day for your chance to win. You may find the tour locations here https://goo.gl/PNbaF9

About Only A Good Man Will Do:

Seriously ambitious man seeks woman to encourage his goals, support his (hopeful) position as Headmaster of Westover Academy, and be purer than Caesar’s wife. Good luck with that!

Daniel Goodman is a man on a mission. For years he has striven for perfection, fighting for the pinnacle achievement in his world of academia, Headmaster of Westover Academy. Westover, established before the American Revolution, is still one of the most prestigious schools in the country. They accept only boys whose parents fit a certain mold and only those teachers who hold to a stringent set of mores, on and off campus. Jonah considers his brother a prig. Daniel sees himself as doing his best to serve his students. How much better can he serve them as headmaster? That is what he seeks to find out.

Suddenly, into his cut and dried, strictly black and white life of moral and upright behavior, comes Eve Star, formerly one of Europe’s foremost exotic dancers. Her life is anything but cut and dried, black and white. Bad enough that she’s enrolled her son in Westover Academy under false pretenses. More, she runs the town’s most disreputable bar. Worst, much to Daniel’s dismay, he finds himself drawn to her like a kid to chocolate. Nothing good can come of this attraction. Or can it? He is, after all, a good man.

Buy Links:

~♥~♥~♥~♥~♥~

coverExcerpt:

“Daniel, am I talking to myself, here?”

“Oh, no, I’m…” He chuckled an amused admission. “Tell me what you said again.”

He could almost hear Eve smile. “I said, you called at four-thirty on Saturday and Sunday, so I took a wild leap that you would today, too.”

“Ah.” Smiling to the empty room, he squirmed to get into a more comfortable position. “A woman of logic.”

“Absolutely. You don’t want to play me in chess. I think five or six moves ahead.”

“I’ll remember that. There’s nothing worse than seeing a guy cry when he’s been beaten at chess by a girl.”

~♥~♥~♥~♥~♥~

About the Author:

A few years ago, Dee S. Knight began writing, making getting up in the morning fun. During the day, her characters killed people, fell in love, became drunk with power, or sober with responsibility. And they had sex, lots of sex. Writing was so much fun Dee decided to keep at it. That’s how she spends her days. Her nights? Well, she’s lucky that her dream man, childhood sweetheart, and long-time hubby are all the same guy, and nights are their secret. For romance ranging from sweet to historical, contemporary to paranormal and more join Dee on Nomad Authors. Contact Dee at dsknight@deesknight.com.

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The Boyfriend Cruise by DeAnna Wadsworth

The Boyfriend Cruise Tour BannerTitle: The Boyfriend Cruise

Series: A Pride of the Caribbean Vacation

Author: Deanna Wadsworth

Genre: M/M Romance

Release Date: December 25, 2018

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42182914-the-boyfriend-cruise

Blurb:

The Pride of the Caribbean is a cruise ship unlike any other. Paranormals working onboard the enchanted ship hide in plain sight, under the benevolent protection of a demigod captain and his fairy husband.

And this is a shipboard romance unlike any other.

Josh Gilbert’s well-meaning family booked a gay-friendly cruise for Christmas in order to find Josh a steady boyfriend. Hoping to escape the constant parade of bachelors—and the collapsible fishing rod dangling mistletoe his mom keeps in her purse—Josh takes solace in a growing friendship with the ship’s photographer, Nathan. Though Josh is falling for Nathan, he worries it will never be more than a shipboard fling.

Nathan recently became aware of his incubus heritage, and has finally learned how to control his demon side. But Josh has awaken more than just the demon’s need for orgasms–Josh has awaken Nathan’s heart. What’s developing between them is the real thing, but can Josh ever accept Nathan’s promiscuous past… and love a sex demon?

Amid lush tropical settings, family hilarity, holiday costume parties, sexy snorkeling adventures, gingerbread martinis, and mythical creatures, will Josh get his Christmas wish and find true love?

Buy Links:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2GA58cP

Barnes & Noble: https://bit.ly/2EJrFSP

Google Play: https://bit.ly/2rTFTbi

iTunes: https://apple.co/2Cu6YIf

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2R6PyJR

Dreamspinner: https://bit.ly/2T7wacH

What Others Are Saying:

DiverseReader – “Deanna Wadsworth’s storytelling of The Boyfriend Cruise, is a heartfelt tale of love that sees what’s inside of the person and less of what’s on the outside.”

Amazon Review – “I enjoyed a lot of the book. The plot was easy to follow, it was well written, funny and dynamic.”

OMGReads – “Cute story about all sorts of beings who call the cruise ship home. Throw in a little Christmas and the book was fun to read.”

Author Bio:

Deanna Wadsworth might be a bestselling erotica author, but she leads a pretty vanilla life in Ohio with her wonderful husband and a couple adorable cocker spaniels. She has been spinning tales and penning stories since childhood, and her first erotic novella was published in 2010. She has served multiple board positions at her local RWA chapter and is the current President 2017 for Rainbow Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing books or brainstorming with friends, you can find her making people gorgeous in a beauty salon. She loves music and dancing, and can often be seen hanging out on the sandbar in the muddy Maumee River or chilling with her hubby and a cocktail in their basement bar. In between all that fun, Deanna cherishes the quiet times when she can let her wildly active imagination have the full run of her mind. Her fascination with people and the interworkings of their relationships have always inspired her to write romance with spice and love without boundaries.

WebsiteFacebookTwitterPinterestGoodreadsAmazonInstagram

You can also find her young adult alter ego, K.D. Worth FacebookTwitter

Buy Deanna’s books at Dreamspinner Press, Decadent Publishing or at any reputable eBook seller like Amazon

Social Media Links:

Website: http://deannawadsworth.com

Facebook Profile: https://www.facebook.com/deanna.wadsworth.9

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/deannawadsworthauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DeannaWadsworth

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/deannawadsworth/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4264579.Deanna_Wadsworth

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/deannawads/

Amazon Author Central: http://.www.amazon.com/author/deannawadsworth

BoyfriendCruise[The]FS_v1 (1) (1)Excerpt:

Chapter One

Day One, At Sea

THE WARM Florida sunshine bathed Josh Gilbert, and he turned his face into it as he walked up the cruise ship gangway, rolling luggage in tow. His weather app said the temps back home in Indiana would reach a balmy fifteen degrees.

Josh still couldn’t believe Mom and Dad had surprised their family—and Josh’s best friend—with a Caribbean cruise for Christmas.

Falling in line behind his older brother, Luke, and his wife, Ramona, the Gilbert clan hauled suitcases and bags of holiday presents onto their new home for the week—the Pride of the Caribbean.

Dwarfed somewhat by the giant cruise liners docked beside them in the Port of Miami, the elegantly appointed Pride made a grand first impression when they entered the lobby behind a slew of other passengers.

“Check out this place,” Luke said, craning his neck, eyes wide.

In awe, they all took in the plush red carpets, crystal chandeliers, and the sleek gold-and-glass banister of the impressive grand staircase. A colossal Christmas tree sat proudly on the first landing, a set of stairs branching to either side and draped in glittering garlands. The tree glistened with white twinkling lights, bows, seashells, and large glass ornaments that, when they caught the light just right, seemed to flicker and dance.

How much did Dad shell out for this trip? Josh wondered.

“Dang, this ship is da bomb,” Aaron muttered in Josh’s ear.

Pleasantly stunned, Josh glanced up at his tall BFF. “No doubt,” he agreed, and then he flinched at something unexpected.

In front of him, two men held hands, chatting with excitement about the cruise.

Though it made Josh happy to see—and more than a tad jealous—openly gay couples in public still surprised him.

If only Josh could ever have something like that in his life.

“Have you figured it out, Josh?” Mom asked, gesturing toward a different couple boarding the ship—two women holding hands.

Puzzle pieces began to fit together, creating a picture Josh wasn’t sure he liked. He narrowed his eyes at his mother. “What’s going on?”

Mom twirled a brown curl around one finger, grinning. Curvy and short—he’d inherited that from her along with the brown hair and eyes—she looked ready to burst.

But Josh’s sister-in-law exploded first.

“It’s a gay cruise!” Ramona cried.

Josh shook his head. “What?”

“We’re gonna find you a boyfriend for Christmas!” Clare announced.

Josh whirled on his sister. “What did you say, Clare?”

She clutched her hands to her ample chest, her curvy figure promising the same weight struggle Mom and Josh suffered. “That we’re gonna find you a boyfriend for Christmas,” his little sister repeated. “This cruise line is gay-friendly, which means there should be plenty of guys for you to have a shipboard romance. Isn’t that great?”

Dad and Luke squirmed, as if caught in the women’s schemes too, or perhaps they feared Josh’s response. Dad was an aged version of his eldest son, as tall and lean as the rest of the family was short and round.

“It’ll be fun, Josh,” Luke assured him, shifting from foot to foot. “No pressure.”

“Yes, pressure,” Ramona insisted, slapping her husband on the arm, her white teeth as dazzling against her brown skin as her white sundress. “He’s getting on board single, but he’s not leaving that way.”

Aaron laughed, and Josh glared at him.

“And I have just the trick,” Mom said, rummaging in her giant purse.

Unable to believe his ears, Josh frowned at Dad. “Were you in on this?”

Before Dad could answer, a stranger stepped in front of Josh. Middle-aged and overly tanned, he wore a lecherous grin.

“What’s this?” the stranger asked. “Mistletoe?”

Then shocking Josh into a stupor, the man kissed him right on the lips.

“What the—” Josh recoiled.

“Name’s Brian,” the guy said, still grinning. “Find me later for a dance.”

Then he slipped into the crowd of passengers.

“What the heck?” Josh spun to face Mom.

Grinning like a fiend, she had a children’s fishing rod in her hand, and rather than a worm dangling from the hook, she’d hung a clump of mistletoe.

“What are you doing?” he cried, too stunned to be as angry as he should’ve been.

“Getting you a man,” Mom said, her face serious now.

Josh set his rolling suitcase on all four wheels and then crossed his arms to glare at her. “You are certifiable, you know that?”

“Certifiably the best matchmaker you know,” she quipped. “Ask Clare and Luke how good I am.”

Luke threw an arm around his pretty wife, and they shared a loving kiss. “Luckiest man in the whole world that Mom introduced me to her tennis coach.” After six years of marriage—sans kids, though not for lack of trying—Luke and Ramona were living the high-end life with their goldendoodle, Fred.

Patting Josh on the shoulder, Clare sighed. “Seriously, dude, you should let Mom pick a guy for you. She has the gift.” Clare’s husband, William, was the son of a lady in Mom’s bunco group. They were married last Valentine’s Day.

“No,” Josh declared, waving his hand in a sweeping gesture of finality. He couldn’t argue against Mom’s success thus far, but Mom would not be how he found his first real boyfriend.

“You can find me a boyfriend, Mrs. G.” Aaron took the fishing rod from her and waggled it over his own head. “Mistletoe, boys!”

Sure enough, Josh’s attractive friend soon had a line of four guys waiting to kiss him. Josh’s face flamed with embarrassment when the third guy added some tongue action and a grope on the ass, which Aaron didn’t seem to find offensive at all.

Josh would die a million deaths if some guy kissed him like that in public—especially in front of his family.

Mom laughed and took back her fishing pole. “You don’t need any help,” she told Aaron, who was still whispering something in bachelor number three’s ear.

Josh pointed at his mother. “Keep that thing away from me.”

“You’re such a party pooper,” she scolded.

“That’s enough,” Dad decided. “Let’s find our rooms.”

As the Gilbert clan moved forward, much to Josh’s further horror, Ramona announced, “Single hot gay guy coming through!”

“Ramona,” Josh hissed, face on fire.

“It’s my job to take pictures of all the single hot guys on this cruise ship,” a sultry voice said from off to the left.

Josh jumped and turned, shocked by the camera pointed at him.

Click.

The lens lowered, and the hottest man Josh had ever laid eyes on was grinning at him.

Tanned, blond, and straight off a Ralph Lauren yacht, the man wore white pants, a navy jacket, and a red ascot. He was tall, lean, and broad in the shoulders, with green eyes a man could get lost in and a face like Adonis himself!

“Uh…?”

“Nathan Bradshaw, shipboard photographer,” the man introduced himself, his blond hair glistening in the sparkling lights of the chandelier.

Or maybe Josh just imagined it glistened. The guy was startling to look at.

Nathan extended a well-manicured hand. “Welcome aboard the Pride.”

“Uh…?”

“This is Josh,” Ramona piped up, bodily pushing him closer to the handsome stranger.

A warm hand, soft but firm, took hold of Josh’s.

“He’s single,” Clare said.

“Is that so?” Nathan drawled, shaking Josh’s hand and not letting go. “Well, so am I, Josh. It’s very nice to meet you.”

“Yeah, um… you too, Nathan.” That’s when clarity came to Josh’s stunned brain. He scowled at his meddling family. “You guys, just stop,” he hissed, dropping the man’s hand like a house afire.

Clare’s big brown eyes widened innocently. “What?”

Nathan chuckled, and Josh’s face heated further—if such a thing were possible.

“Everybody needs a cheering section,” Nathan said. Then he gestured to the whole Gilbert clan. “Everybody, get closer. Let’s immortalize the moment you began the best vacation of your life.”

Josh squished between Clare and Ramona, while Dad, Aaron, and Luke took the back and Mom the far left. Josh somehow managed to say “cheese” along with everyone else while Nathan snapped a few pics.

Nathan looked at his display. “Perfect. Now, let’s get one of each couple.”

“We’re a couple.” Ramona pointed at Luke, then Mom and Dad. “And so are they. Those three are all flying solo.”

“So you said.” Nathan eyed Josh with a sideways grin that could almost be described as predatory.

Josh’s cheeks warmed, and he couldn’t smile. I must be losing my mind. This is all some sort of twisted dream. Please wake up. Wake up!

But nothing happened, except Aaron and Clare posing on either side of him and Nathan raising the camera again.

“C’mon, smile for the camera,” Nathan prompted, and somehow Josh managed to suck in his gut and smile.

Looking only at Josh, Nathan stepped toward them. “The pictures will be displayed on the viewing screens near the purser’s desk at 7:00 p.m. tonight. They’re available for purchase anytime during the cruise.” He leaned in close and whispered, “But just a tip, they go on sale the last day, so keep track of the numbers for the ones you want.” Not leaning out of Josh’s personal space, Nathan winked at him. “Just don’t tell anybody or it might get me fired.”

Josh swallowed, nervous all of a sudden with how close Nathan had gotten and how delicious his cologne smelled. Like honey or something else equally warm and inviting. Josh couldn’t quite place it, but he liked it. Before he could get another chance to identify the alluring fragrance, the gorgeous photographer had slipped back into the crowd, smiling and flirting with the next group of passengers.

For a hot second, Josh had imagined Nathan was actually flirting with him, but he quickly pushed such thoughts away.

It’s his job to flirt. Get over yourself!

“He was handsome,” Mom said.

He flinched at her hovering behind him, and then he frowned at her. “So is Brad Pitt. Doesn’t mean he wants me.”

She scoffed. “Oh, if Brad Pitt ever saw this face, he’d switch teams, for sure.”

And then, to Josh’s horror, she pinched both of his cheeks.

Hating it when she did that, but grateful she didn’t add her usual “just look at these chipmunk cheeks,” Josh wriggled out of her grasp. “Don’t pull on my skin. You’ll give me wrinkles.”

She scoffed again. “You’re only twenty-seven. What do you know about wrinkles?”

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” Aaron chimed.

Yeah, it was bad enough that at twenty-seven Josh had never had a real boyfriend. The last thing he needed was premature wrinkling. His family was already going to make him prematurely gray.

“C’mon,” Dad said. “I’m tired after all the driving. Let’s get to our rooms and get settled. I think there’s a manhattan somewhere on this ship with my name on it.”

Several crewmembers with tablets mingled in the crowd, giving directions to staterooms. Dad made a beeline toward a man in a Santa hat, holding a tablet, who stood beside a distinguished-looking fellow in a captain’s uniform.

“Welcome aboard,” the man with the tablet said. Though he looked almost Mom and Dad’s age, his tanned skin was flawless and his hair a rich brown. “I’m Raoul, your purser, and this is Captain Leonides.”

“Welcome aboard,” the captain said, with a tip of his hat. He was quite handsome, in an exotic Mediterranean sort of way, with the faintest hint of gray at his temples. Definitely looked competent to captain their ship, a man born to be at sea.

I might die of embarrassment, but at least not from shipwreck.

“Thank you,” Dad said, and everyone else repeated similar greetings. “We’re the Gilbert family. I believe we have four rooms booked.”

Raoul swiped a few times and tapped on his tablet. “Yes, the Gilberts. You are in cabins F1, 2, 3, and 4, on the Fiesta deck. Very nice accommodations you’ve chosen. Some of our finest suites, each with ocean views and balconies.”

“Balconies?” Luke cried, sliding down his shades, his brown eyes wide. “How much money did you spend on this, Dad?”

Dad raised a hand. “You know it’s rude to ask that. This is your Christmas present, and I want us all to have a great time. I even got us the unlimited drink package.”

“Woo-hoo, margaritas, here I come,” Aaron declared, raising his hand for a high five from Clare, which she returned after a slight frown.

“You guys better have a great time,” Mom said. “Because none of you are getting birthday gifts from us this year.”

Josh laughed. Dad had an overly generous spirit, but Mom kept a tight rein on the family purse strings. She might have married a renowned heart surgeon, but she never forgot the trailer she was born and raised in. She passed along the value of money to all of her children—well, maybe not to Clare. As the youngest and the only girl, Clare was more than spoiled. Dad had bailed her out of credit card debt twice that Josh knew of.

“No birthday present for me? Mrs. G, that’s just cruel,” Aaron cried.

She patted his cheek rather than pinching it, Josh noted. “Oh, well, maybe for you.”

“That’s fair,” Clare muttered to Josh, and he wisely said nothing.

Clare might be spoiled and bad with money, but Josh adored her. And since her husband was currently in Afghanistan fighting for their freedoms and she would be spending her first Christmas as a married woman without him, he kept the comment to himself that she shouldn’t worry. Daddy’s girl always got a present.

A large, stoic bellman loaded their suitcases, gift bags, and wrapped presents onto a trolley, grunting a “No” when Dad tried to help. Raoul gave him instructions to deliver their things to the suites, and the man lumbered toward an elevator.

Raoul snapped his fingers, and as if out of nowhere, a very petite woman with a bright smile and a pink streak in her hair appeared.

Aaron jumped back and put his hands to his chest. “You just came out of nowhere, didn’t you?”

“I’m little,” she quipped.

“Penelope dear, please show the Gilbert family to their suites,” Raoul told her.

She grinned impishly. “Right this way, family,” she said in a cheery voice. All but floating up the grand staircase with her hands at the small of her back, Penelope led them to their rooms.

“Have you sailed with us before?” Penelope asked Dad, gazing up at him with big doe eyes she batted coquettishly.

“No, first time.” Dad smiled down at her, seeming smitten with how cute and tiny she was.

“Isn’t she adorable?” Mom whispered to Josh.

“Yeah, sure, I guess,” he said. For a flash, Josh thought Penelope frowned at him, but the change in her face happened so quick he probably imagined it.

Penelope was very pretty, but her long eyelashes were as fake as the pink streak in her blonde hair. The glitter across her brow and eyelids might’ve been unprofessional, but this was a gay-friendly cruise. He wondered if she was on the rainbow, but couldn’t be sure with the way she giggled so flirtatiously with Dad.

“Here is the first suite,” Penelope announced, pausing outside F1. She studied Josh and Aaron. “I pick this one for you two.”

“Um, okay,” Josh said, figuring it was her attempt at being cute and the rooms were assigned.

The act worked on Dad and Luke, if the way they tilted their heads and smiled at her were any indicator—as if they couldn’t decide if she was real or not. Regardless, Luke had better stop staring or his feisty wife would smack him one.

But when Penelope opened the first room, all their eyes went straight to the spacious suite and dazzling view.

Josh gasped.

“Holy ocean view, Batman,” Aaron exclaimed.

The room was gorgeous, not cramped like the cruise he went on for spring break in college. They each had a double bed, and there was a sitting area with a couch, a door that probably led to the bathroom, and sliding doors that opened to a balcony, which currently faced the Port of Miami. Towels folded into wreaths with soaps for ornaments and big red bows lay on each bed. A pretty Christmas tree with blown-glass ornaments that seemed to glisten and dance in the light was perched on the table between the beds. Mirrored closet doors visually doubled the space, and much to Josh’s surprise, their luggage had already arrived.

“Wow” was all Josh could say.

Dad and Mom grinned, and rubbernecking behind them, his siblings had eyes as wide as their mouths.

“Have fun, boys,” Penelope sang.

Josh pulled out his wallet to tip Penelope, but Dad raised a hand. “No, no, save your money for souvenirs.”

“Thanks, Dad.”

Aaron went up and hugged first Mom, then Dad. “Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. G. Can you adopt me?”

Mom laughed. “I think we did that a long time ago.”

“Moving this way, family,” Penelope announced. “Let’s see which of you get the next room.” Then she flitted away, the rest of the Gilberts following and her voice fading like tinkling sleigh bells as their suite door shut.

Once alone, Josh and Aaron exchanged looks.

“This is going to be the best vacation ever,” Aaron declared.

Josh put his hands on his hips. “Fess up. Did you know Mom and Dad booked a gay-friendly cruise to find me a boyfriend?”

Aaron waved him off. “Why are you looking a gift horse in the mouth?” He was tall, fit, and had the prettiest dark curls and blue eyes—which was why he never had a problem scoring a date.

“I’m not.”

“You are.” He made a beeline to the balcony door and slid it open, filling the suite with warm, salty air. “And yes, I knew it was gay-friendly, and the girls have this notion that you’ll have a shipboard romance and fall in love. Maybe you will, maybe you won’t. All I know is that you’re the luckiest SOB on earth to have a family who would pick a gay cruise line just for you. And your mom even booked us all mani-pedis this afternoon. Your dad and Luke are getting massages. Bet they’re hoping that little pink pixie, Penelope, is the massage therapist.” He snorted at his own joke, obviously noting the same thing Josh did about the way Dad and Luke had been enraptured with the woman.

Chagrined by Aaron’s speech, Josh shuffled his feet, studying his sandals. He knew he was lucky. Aaron’s family would never go on a ship like this. Especially his father. The man could barely look at Aaron sometimes. His mom and brother were never cruel, but Josh always sensed they weren’t sure how to take the flamboyant Aaron. Sometimes, if Aaron had too much to drink, he’d cry or bitch about them, saying he felt more love from Josh’s family than his own.

Evidenced by the coin Dad put out for this trip, the Gilberts viewed Aaron as family too.

“Yeah, I know I sound ungrateful—”

“You do.”

“But I hope they don’t run around the ship looking for a man for me. That will be so humiliating. And that mistletoe fishing pole? What the heck?”

“That mistletoe got me a hot date for the Christmas costume party tonight. And your family means well,” Aaron said, leaning on the railing and tipping his face up to the sun.

Not a fan of heights, Josh popped his head out onto the balcony. “Nice view. I won’t be sitting out here.”

“Why not?”

“Haven’t you heard about all the people who fall off cruise ships?”

Aaron scoffed. “Only jealous husbands push their wives overboard. That would never happen on a gay ship.”

Josh chuckled but wisely stepped inside. “Promise me you won’t go on the balcony after we’ve been drinking, ’kay?”

“Okay, worrywart, as long as you promise to let loose. Have fun.” Aaron gave Josh a shimmy. “This is a cruise custom designed for us!”

“Okay, I promise to have fun.”

“Ground rules.” Aaron sprawled out on the bed closest to the balcony, lacing his fingers behind his head. “If the Do Not Disturb is on the door, we won’t interrupt any hookups. Any overnighters, we have to okay with the other, that way one of us can sleep in Clare’s room.”

“Okay.” Josh laughed, doubting very much he’d have an overnight guest.

“And no fucking in each other’s bed,” Aaron added. “I love you, but even I have standards.”

“I’m fine with whatever,” Josh said. “We both know you’re the only one who’s going to be hooking up in this room. I should probably just move my stuff into Clare’s room right now.”

“You don’t know that. You could meet the man of your dreams.”

Josh scoffed, his mind revisiting a pair of green eyes and golden hair sparkling in the sunlight…. Nope, never gonna happen. “Yeah, like I’m gonna meet the man of my dreams.”

“You never know what could happen.”

“I’m too fat.”

“No, you’re not. I know how hard you’ve been trying to lose weight. You look amazing.”

“I could stand to lose another twenty pounds.”

“Don’t,” Aaron scolded. “I hate it when you get down on yourself.”

“It’s just the truth.”

“Says you. Just try and chill out for once. Don’t worry about your waistline or whatever rules you’ve made up in your head. Just go out there and have fun. Who knows? Maybe something magical will happen.”

As he unpacked, listening to Aaron list all the activities and excursions the ship offered, Josh knew he could be a stick in the mud. Well, in comparison to Aaron, anyway. But he’d been looking forward to a relaxing vacation with no computers, deadlines, or spreadsheets, and no worries. He didn’t even have to worry about any homophobes on this trip.

His thoughts alighted again on the cute photographer, Nathan.

Maybe this boyfriend cruise might not be so bad.

His family loved him enough to pick this ship, and honestly, until this moment, a shipboard romance hadn’t been an option. He hadn’t been on board half an hour and he’d already been kissed once—even if he wasn’t pleased with Mom about it.

This ship was full of potential for a guy like Josh.

Aaron was right. Josh needed to let loose this week. He’d waited his entire life to find romance, so if a chance presented itself, he should not squander the opportunity.

Even if that meant his family embarrassing him all over the Caribbean.

Saturday Spotlight – One of a Kind Christmas by Lexi Post

LP OOAKC bannerOne of a Kind Christmas
A Christmas Carol Book #4
By Lexi Post

Lexi has a $25 Gift Card to giveaway during the tour. Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter. Remember you may enter every day for your chance to win. You may find the tour locations here https://goo.gl/sPP5CV.

FullofLife medAbout One of a Kind Christmas:
For her to love him, he must face a spirit, an archangel…and himself.

The spirit of Cameron Douglas has totally screwed-up…again. Now, he has to fix his mess in one night with the help of his best friend and somehow encourage his widow to move on.

Holly Douglas is anguished that this is the last Christmas she’ll be visited by her late husband, Cameron. For three years he’s sent her the spirits of Christmas Past, Present, and Future, and they‘ve helped her cope with her loss. But now all that ends, and she doesn’t understand why he must push her away.

Ethan Stewart has been in love with Holly since Cameron’s death, but she isolated herself from everyone, including him. Then something changed, and he was welcomed back as her friend. But he wants more— to love her openly, and most of all to make her happy again. Though he loved his best friend like a brother and will do anything for Holly, as he’s pulled into the spirit world, he discovers the price they must pay for their chance at forever…and it just might be too high.

Releases Day December 5, 2018
Buy Links for One of a Kind Christmas:
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2TukRfU

B&N:  https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/one-of-a-kind-christmas-lexi-post/1129901071?ean=2940161606766

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1442733578

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/one-of-a-kind-christmas

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/One-Kind-Christmas-Carol-Book-ebook/dp/B07KK2LFHN/

Amazon AU:  https://www.amazon.com.au/One-Kind-Christmas-Carol-Book-ebook/dp/B07KK2LFHN/

Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.ca/One-Kind-Christmas-Carol-Book-ebook/dp/B07KK2LFHN

LexiPost_OneOfAKindChristmas_600x900.jpgExcerpt:

He closed his eyes and took a deep breath before opening them. “I miss Cam. It was as if we were two parts of the same soul. I lived vicariously through him even while I worried constantly about him. It was one of the reasons I was constantly warning him to be careful. I was afraid to lose him.”

Ethan looked away and rubbed the back of his neck. “And then I did.”

She felt as if her heart were breaking all over again, not for her but for Ethan. He was so good to her. He even loved her. And she… “Ethan, I understand.”

His gaze returned to hers. Though she couldn’t see his face clearly, the limited light reflected off the sheen in his eyes.

She placed her hand on his cheek and rising on her toes brushed her lips across his in a feather-light kiss. She only meant to give comfort, but a spark of something else hit her heart.

She remained there, her lips close to his but not touching, wanting more but afraid to ask.

Ethan remained absolutely still, his breath mixing with her own.

He loved her but would never push her. It wasn’t his nature. She could walk away right now, but to what?

Nothing.

She stared at his mouth in the dim light. She wanted to live again. She wanted to feel again. Tilting her head, she pressed her lips more firmly against his, moving her hand down his stubbled jaw and behind his neck to pull him closer.

Ethan’s lips opened, and she slipped her tongue between them.

As his arms came around her, it was like waking from a dream. A slow burn flowed through her veins as he took control of the kiss and explored her mouth with his tongue. It was an unhurried exploration and heat built in her belly. When he pulled back to lick the underside of her top lip, she took her first deep breath. As she exhaled, tingles spread throughout her body.

He kissed the corners of her mouth before leaning his forehead against her own. “Ye catch my blood on fire, lass.”

Other Books in the Series:

A Christmas Carol Book 1, Pleasures of Christmas Past is on sale for only $.99!
Jessica is assigned a hot, Scottish mentor who confuses her heart. But will he protect her soul?

Buy Links for Pleasures of Christmas Past:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2DxWFDU

B&N: http://bit.ly/1jICy8T

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1026485012

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/pleasures-of-christmas-past

Amazon AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/Pleasures-Christmas-Past-Carol-Book-ebook/dp/B013EVYRV4/

Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.com.au/Pleasures-Christmas-Past-Carol-Book-ebook/dp/B013EVYRV4/

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pleasures-Christmas-Past-Carol-Book-ebook/dp/B013EVYRV4

Desires of Christmas Present (A Christmas Carol Book 2)
Sometimes not knowing is better…for everyone.
Desires of Christmas Present Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2DxtbpE

Temptations of Christmas Future (A Christmas Carol Book 3)
He set out to prove the future was far worse than she imagined. Now he wished it wasn’t.
Temptations of Christmas Future Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2Q9s71L

Lexi Post head shotAbout the Author:
Lexi Post is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of romance inspired by the classics. She spent years in higher education taking and teaching courses about the classical literature she loved. From Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Masque of the Red Death” to Tolstoy’s War and Peace, she’s read, studied, and taught wonderful classics.

But Lexi’s first love is romance novels so she married her two first loves, romance, and the classics. From hot paranormals to sizzling cowboys to hunks from out of this world, Lexi provides a sensuous experience with a “whole lotta story.”

Lexi is living her own happily ever after with her husband and her cat in Florida. She makes her own ice cream every weekend, loves bright colors, and you will never see her without a hat.

Lexi’s Social Links:

Website: http://www.lexipostbooks.com/

Lexi Post Updates: https://app.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/c1w1g3

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lexipostbooks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LexiPost

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lexipostbooks/

Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1IEL2cc

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/lexi-post

D2D: http://books2read.com/author/lexi-post/subscribe/1/16171/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/goodreadscomLexiPost

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lexipostbooks/

Blog: http://www.happilyeverafterthoughts.com/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lexipost77/

Email: lexi@lexipostbooks.com

Reviews by Crystal buttona Rafflecopter giveaway

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/801c221b84/

 

 

 

AuThursday – Seelie Kay

SD Banner

Seeliekay author photo (1)Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I am a former attorney and journalist who turned to writing after I found myself a single mom with a toddler. Opening my own marketing/pr consultancy turned out to be the perfect choice. After I was diagnosed with MS, I cut back to freelance writing. I began writing romance about two years ago literally on a whim. My son had graduated from high school and was learning how to fly from the nest, so it was time to do something I had longed to do, write books.

How do you make time to write?

I balance my time between making money and writing books! Seriously, I need to eat and I barely make enough money as an author to keep me in Cheetos!  So much of what I do earn goes into promotion because I am so new to the book world. When I am not writing romance, I ghostwrite and edit books for others, mostly other lawyers. As for making time, writing is just something I do. I don’t really think about it, it has always been part of me,

What genre are your books?

I write a broad range of romance, from the erotic to the sweet. However, Snatching Dianna is my first foray into romantic suspense. And yes, it does have just a touch of erotic romance, primarily because the main characters are ones I had written about in my series, Kinky Briefs.

What draws you to this genre?

I am drawn to romance because I believe love is there for anyone who wants, even someone like me. Everyone in search of love has bought into the fantasy and that is not always a bad thing. I am drawn to romantic suspense simply because I am fascinated by mysteries and puzzles. I like to take complicated situations and discover the way out. I have identified with Emma Peel (The Avengers) since I was a kid and you will find part of her in each of my female leads.

What are your current projects?

The second book in the Feisty Lawyers series, Infamy, is due out on my birthday, January 4. I also have a stocking stuffer set for release in December called The President’s Daughter. In addition, I am working on the third book in the Feist Lawyers series called, Cult.

Here’s the blurb for Infamy:

Infamy. An evil or wicked act. Terrorists bent on revenge have found a way to make planes disappear from the sky, without a trace. And when one winds up buried in a Wisconsin cornfield, it’s a race against time to rescue the passengers from certain death.

International law attorneys Sheikh Harun Ali and Marianne Benson Ali are united not only in their love for each other but also by their commitment to fight for the victims of terrorism. Together, they sue terrorist groups to compensate the victims of their violence, raiding terrorists’ coffers and destroying their ability to fund evil acts. Now, the terrorists are targeting them. A mysterious missive draws Harun to the Amazon, where a man claiming to be his brother warns him of a plot against the United States. The Alis enlist the assistance of their neighbors, agent Cade Matthews, who works in black ops, and his wife, former agent and Constitutional Law Professor Janet MacLaughlin, as well as two recent law school graduates, to discover the truth. After two planes disappear and an attempted school shooting is aborted, these feisty lawyers are pushed to the wall, desperate to find a plane that has been buried in an unknown corn field, the passengers still on board. The terrorists’ hatred for the Alis is absolute—they are the people who once left their organization bankrupt and broken—but they hate America more.  However, their fiendish games are only a beginning. They are seeking a much bigger prize. One that could destroy a nation, and possibly, the world. An act that will live in infamy.

Here’s the blurb for The President’s Daughter:

Be careful what you wish for because it just might send your life into a tailspin from which you may not recover.

When presidential candidate Jamisen Powell meets volunteer Sarah Lee Pearson, he is shocked to discover her eyes mirror his own. But Sarah was raised by two loving parents and has no questions about her heritage. Instead, after their death, she merely longs to find an extended family. She becomes convinced that Powell could be a distant relative. Powell, on the other hand, has spent twenty-five long years haunted by the memory of a daughter kidnapped from her bed. He suspects Sarah could be his long-lost daughter. As both launch separate covert searches for the truth, Sarah is found by the estranged parents of the man who raised her. Suddenly, the truth will no longer set her free. It could destroy the happy memories of her childhood. Hang on to your seat, and more importantly, hang on to your heart, as one woman discovers the true meaning of family.

Are you an Introvert or Extravert? How does this affect your work?

I am naturally shy, but once I start talking, I do not shut up! I literally shut off my phone when I write, because I could talk on the phone all day.

What is your writing Kryptonite?

When I am in the zone, nothing else exists for me. I write until I get everything out of my head. Sometimes I write for 10 hours without eating, drinking, speaking, or moving from the computer.

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

If you believe you can write and you have a story to tell, just do it. It’s doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. All that matters is what you believe.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Author links:

www.seeliekay.com

www.seeliekay.blogspot.com

Twitter: @SeelieKay https://twitter.com/SeelieKay

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/seelie.kay.77

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Seelie-Kay/e/B074RDRWNZ/

Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

download (2)From Snatching Dianna:

“After what seemed like hours in the sweltering van, it lurched to a stop.

Dianna heard a man bark orders. A door to the van opened and someone pulled the rope from her feet, then removed her hood. She took a deep breath.  A man grabbed her by the arm, forced to her feet, and pulled her from the van. Dianna stumbled when she hit the ground. The stones were hot and her feet were covered by athletic socks, no shoes. Show no weakness.

Dianna immediately surveyed her surroundings. It was still night, but she was in a well-lit courtyard. A large stone mansion stood in front of her. She looked to her right, then her left. The courtyard was enclosed by a large stone fence, at least eight feet high. A fortress. Fortunately, Dianna was a rock-climber. She could rappel over the fence with the right equipment. All she would need was something to serve as a pick, maybe a rope. A knife, a screwdriver, even a fork. Keep your eyes and ears open. Be ready.

A large black man, dressed in a white suit and a maroon turban, walked out of the front door and down the stairs. He stopped and flashed a malevolent smile. He flung his arms wide and in a cultured baritone boomed, “Welcome to paradise, ladies. I hope you enjoy your stay.”

Some of the guards laughed.

“Crikey,” Tillie muttered. “Sounds like a blasted genie.”

Dianna glanced sideways and for the first time, got a look at her new friend. She was tall and thin, her body well defined. She looked strong and aware, almost fierce. Her eyes seemed to be studying the place, taking everything in. She showed no fear. Instead, she seemed interested. Something was off. Tillie did not act like a victim as the others did. She was not cowed. Was she a cop? Or like Dianna, someone who would not permit themselves to be broken?

There was only one thing of which Dianna was certain. She had found a friend. A useful one.”

 

AuThursday – Sue L. Hamilton

Please welcome my fellow ND author, Sue L. Hamilton to The Clog Blog.  Sue, tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Growing up on a family farm in north central ND provided a strong work ethic that lead to a 20-year corporate career, encompassing direct sales, upper management, employee training, customer service, and business development. 

For the last 15 years, I’ve redirected my passion by encouraging others through the gift of speaking and writing.  This allows others to be motivated and energized and bring them hope.

I’m an eternal optimist that loves life.  On a personal note, I love gardening, cooking, and classic cars and is especially fond of being a wife of 31 years and mother of two grown sons.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer to see where an idea takes you?

The structure I use on a regular basis while writing is the following:

  • Personal Story
  • Thoughts about the problem
  • Lessons learned – teaching
  • What to inspire or to move to action
  • Prayer

Do you ever get writer’s Block?

Yep!

Okay, I’ll say a little more.  I’ve felt like I’ve had writer’s block ever since I completed my memoir Carried by Faith in the fall of 2017.  I worked at it for seven years. In the last two of those years, I worked at it every day, even if it was for fifteen minutes.  Now I have to force myself to write a weekly blog and most recently have went to an every other week blog because I just don’t feel like writing. UGH!!

What genre do you write, and what draws you to it?

Blog posts are geared mostly to middle-aged women working on self – improvement.

Memoir Carried by Faith is a wide range audience from male or female, age 16-70 years old.

How do you come up with the idea for your book?

I was forced into writing!  While doing a lot of public speaking I use my life stories in the presentation/training and afterward people would ask me if I had a book or a website that I shared my stories in detail.  The answer was always a resounding, “No!” I continued to hear it and decided to begin writing even though I wasn’t a writer. So, the idea for my memoir was my life stories from around the age of 5 – 30years old and a tragic motorcycle accident I survived.

My current project is a self-help book with the “rest of the story” from where I left off in the memoir.  

How do you publish your book(s) and why?  (Indie, traditional or small press)

Self-publish.  I used TLC Design https://www.tlcbookdesign.com/ which allows for a la carte or packaged options.  I’ve chosen this route because of the cost and the control of timing in producing a finished product.

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

Start writing and keep writing!  Huh – maybe I need to take my own advice.  

Find your writing voice and style.  The only way I’ve found this is by continuing to write and seeing what I like and don’t like.  In addition, I suggest that you get used to being told you need to improve and change things that you thought were wonderful and after someone else reads it they give you feedback for improvement.  Be ready for constructive criticism because it will help you and improve the end product.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

www.suelhamilton.com

Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

Walls as a Way of Life

Excerpts from Carried by Faith: From Substance Abuse to a Life Filled with Miracles page 40-42

Author – Sue L. Hamilton www.suelhamilton.com or www.carriedbyfaith.com

The high, thick walls of protection became my life; they bordered my heart, so no one could enter.  Others didn’t understand what I was living in, this living Hell.  The walls hid the pain and unspeakable things associated with the hard years of alcohol and drug abuse.  

I believed no one would understand, so it was easier to keep everyone away with high, cold walls of silence and no emotion.  No form of light, goodness, or happiness was allowed in. Alcohol and drugs filled the silence.

It was nice and quiet in the walls of protection, I didn’t have to explain myself, but then again, I couldn’t explain myself.  The silence was best, and that is why I would use the “liquid forgetter,” alcohol and drugs. I craved the effect they gave me, and they kept my level of chaotic thinking at bay.  They did for me what I could not do for myself.

I ran after the effect and did whatever I needed to get my supply.  The concoctions of alcohol and drugs along with the need to keep my supply met took me to some very dark places.  It can be explained like this – wickedness danced in the darkness of night, moving in and out of its hiding places and drunkenness was the painful bondage that took over my mind and body.  When I would awaken from its stupor, I would wonder, “Where am I?” “What happened to me?” “What have I done?”

“What was to become of my miserable life?” “Why was I here anyway?”

I looked for a way to escape my life, even a slit to my wrist one dark night would not stop the pain.  I had no answers. It felt like a knife stabbing in my heart. The pain would dull occasionally, but I always felt its continual throb, reminding me of my bondage.

I was constantly trying to get back to the original first feeling of catching a “buzz” or “getting high”.  It would not come back.

Nights turned into weeks, then months, and years of crying and sobbing into my pillow.  The pillow stopped the loud wail coming from deep within my soul. It silenced the fear and absorbed the tears that I couldn’t vocalize.  

No words would ever reach my lips to explain my hopelessness.  I continued to repeat in my head, “Why God…why am I here?”  

I didn’t have any answers, so I continue to hide behind my protective walls.

 

AuThursday – McKenna Dean

GOAC BannerPlease welcome, McKenna Dean to the Clog Blog.   

SignatureLogo_300x218McKenna, please tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I’ve done a number of different jobs over the years: worked as a lab tech, in a vet clinic, as a dog trainer, an actress, a singer. I’ve always walked a fine line between my creative/artistic side and my scientific one. When I graduated from high school, I thought I had to choose—and so I gave up writing and focused on my career. Many years later, I discovered online fanfiction archives and I was obsessed! When I began writing again, it was like opening a floodgate. The encouragement I received from fandom allowed me to submit my first story for publication, but no one was more surprised than I when it was accepted!

Since then, I’ve written over 20 stories, but in so many different genres I didn’t have a recognizable brand. In 2017, I made the decision to re-brand myself and concentrate on just paranormal romance.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just to see where an idea takes you?

I’m a die-hard panster—working from just the barest outline, a faint idea of where I want to go and trotting off in that direction. I love it when my stories surprise me! But the longer I do this, the more I realize I’d be more productive with more outlining. I’m trying to find that balance between outlining enough that it streamlines the process without becoming a story killer by taking all the spontaneity out of the writing.

Do you ever get writer’s Block?

I have. Once when I attempted NaNoWriMo—it was a kind of pressure and writing style all wrong for me. But also when I’m too tired and emotionally drained to write. Sometimes a story stalls for weeks. I remind myself of Louis L’Amour’s quote to “Start writing no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”

What genre do you write?

My focus these days in on paranormal romance and urban fantasy.

What draws you to this genre?

I love the world-building and the way the genre lends itself to political and social commentary. I love the magic of the supernatural, and the power of shifters.

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

I love snowed-in stories, so I wanted to set up a situation in which my main characters were pitted against each other but wound up having to work together for their survival. An inheritance with conditions seemed to be the ideal way to bring a fangirl with a secret and a shifter whose inner wolf is in hiding together. Add in a snowstorm, a stray dog, and a series of increasingly dangerous accidents, and you have Ghost of a Chance.

How are you publishing this book and why? (Indie, traditional or small press)?

I’ve both worked with a small press and done indie publishing before, and they both have their pros and cons. Publishers typically provide quality covers and reputable editing, and these are major perks when you are looking at paying for those services yourself. But working with a press means working on their schedule—meeting deadlines and so forth. It can take up to a year from the time you submit a story to seeing it published and getting royalties—which means you really need to be producing a new work once per quarter at the minimum.

As an indie author, I’m my only client. Yes, I have to pay for cover art and editing, but I can set my own price and launch dates. The amount of promotion is nearly the same in either case, though a well-known press can give you a leg up there too. Honestly, I like doing both. Sometimes it’s nice to turn over the reins to someone else. Sometimes you want to have total control. With the demands of my current job, indie publishing seems to be a better fit, but I intend to offer my next book to a press.

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

Writing is a muscle—the more you use it, the stronger it gets. Read the kinds of books you want to write. Read good books. Bad books only teach you to imitate them. Don’t read your reviews. I know, no one listens to that one, but if you do read your reviews, try not to let the bad ones derail your process. Keep a folder of all your good reviews—you’ll need them when you are promoting the next book anyway—but more importantly, read those glowing comments when you need encouragement. Read the reviews of your favorite stories too. There’s comfort in realizing there are people who hate a story you know is brilliant.

Follow Chuck Wendig’s blog—he has some terrific things to say about writing. Read about improving your craft, but above all, take what you read with a grain of salt. If advice doesn’t gel with you, no big deal. Do what works for you and ignore the rest.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

The easiest way to find me is to go to my website. There are links to my social media on almost every page, but the most complete line up (including Instagram and Book Bub, as well as my newsletter) is on my blog page: http://mckennadeanromance.com/blog

As a matter of fact, you can just subscribe to my blog there, and you’ll get all the latest news when I post it.

Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

ghostofachance_finalThe light faded as they approached the dip in the drive leading down to the bridge crossing the creek. Long shadows were cast from the tree line onto the drive, and as they rode into the shade, the temperature dropped as though they’d walked into a freezer. Casey pulled Indy up as he inspected the tracks. He pointed at a trail going off to one side. “Someone made a break for it here. Didn’t want to cross the bridge, most likely.”

He urged Indy in that direction, following the tracks splitting off into the woods. Indy obliged, trudging through the deeper slow, icicles gathering on his feathered legs.

The other tracks crossed the bridge. That way led to the road. The thought of Athena or the other mares potentially ending up in traffic turned Sarah’s stomach. The horses aside, some driver could get killed if they rounded a corner and found the mares in their path.

Sarah closed her legs around King’s sides and urged him across the bridge. He didn’t want to leave Indy and balked at crossing the wooden structure. The bulk of the missing horses had gone that way, however, and Sarah thumped her heels against the reluctant gelding to follow their trail.

Ghost exploded out of the brush to block her path, barking furiously. The Shepherd favored one foreleg, and as Sarah watched, drops of blood flecked the snow around the dog.

King rocked back on his haunches, preparatory for a spin for home. Sarah pulled up on the reins and closed her legs around the spooked gelding. Behind her, she heard Indy crash through the vegetation. Casey must have turned him around.

“Go home,” she shouted at Ghost. “Bad dog!”

She clapped her calves against King’s flanks and the

gelding sprang forward. Ghost scooted to one side as the horse charged, flinging snow behind him in his wake. Sarah leaned across King’s neck as he galloped across the bridge, belatedly considering the slickness of the wooden planks. Too late now. Once they were across, she’d pull up and wait for Casey.

Halfway across the bridge, a terrible shriek rent the air. Wood splintered and failed. Boards separated under the weight of horse and rider and came apart. King screamed as the footing beneath him gave way, and he plunged into the icy stream below, carrying Sarah with him.