Friday, December 31, 2010

Dream the POSSIBLE dream!

Happy Holidays,  y'all. I hope the new year brings you many blessings. And speaking of 2011, it's that time again--time to make those New Year's Resolutions. When I was younger I used to make outrageous resolutions like, "This year I'm going to write the Great American Novel." Whatever that means...and I didn't write my first novel until I was 33. Better late than never, right? Or I'd commit myself to solving some sort of complicated mathematical equation, though I am not at all mathematically inclined. Or--and this is my favorite--I'd resolve to workout like a madwoman and starve myself into supermodel-thin shape not taking into account the fact that my figure is naturally more Marilyn Monroe-esque than Kate Moss-y.

Finally, over the past five years, I decided to make resolutions I had a hope in hell of achieving. In 2010, I resolved to submit a manuscript to Ellora's Cave and that worked out beautifully! In fact I have a new release coming out at Ellora's Cave on January 7th titled Love Game. Woo hoo! So this year, I'm going to keep building on my momentum as a writer and keep up with my healthy habits like yoga and controlling my sugar intake (not insane, borderline eating disorder habits).

But then I thought, why not take these reasonable resolutions one step further? Why not make a few resolutions I know I can keep to bolster my self-esteem even more? It's time to dream the possible dream! Here's what I've come up with:

1. When I empty the garbage can, I will immediately put in a new trash bag. I'm sure I can stick to this one...okay, 75% sure.
2. I will clean the lint trap in the dryer between each load.
3. I will no longer buy Men's Fitness magazine under the pretense of reading the articles. And really, if they wanted me to be able to focus on the content, why would they fill it with smoking hot, half-naked men??? I mean, look at the dude on the cover--even he's checking himself out!
4. I will no longer sneak a few grapes from the bag while finishing the rest of my shopping. I mean, I still have to taste one to be sure they're worth buying, but I will stop at only one...maybe two, but that's it!
5. I will not ogle my yoga instructor's ass...hey, I have to make one resolution I know I'm going to break. That's half the fun, isn't it? *grin*

So now it's your turn--what grand and not-so-grand resolutions are you making this year?

Cheers,
Cindy

Saturday, December 18, 2010

What Cindy Reads--Mirage by Denyse Bridger

When Kristy signed on to be John Smythe's executive assistant, she never imagined falling in love with the coldly handsome and ruthless CEO. Yet, that's precisely what happened. In Smythe's hands, the company prospered, even if his partner didn't. Wheeler Enterprises is in the middle of a fraud investigation when Douglas Wheeler dies, and his only daughter is all that stands between Smythe and complete control of the Wheeler company. 

When Detective Peter King comes into the picture, and accuses Smythe of more than corporate dirty-dealing, Kristy's life is suddenly a lot more complicated than she wants it to be... 


This book has it ALL--hot, hot love scenes, complex characters (which Ms. Bridger pulls beautifully in this steamy short story), and plenty of twists that kept me guessing. My favorite character has to be John, with his alpha-male, bad boy swagger, he's got this reader crushin' like a school girl!  I also loved Kristy's unwavering belief in John, even though he's accused of some pretty bad stuff. Ms. Bridger did a wonderful job of walking that fine line between loyalty and blind devotion. With perfect pacing and sharp prose, put this one on your TBR list. You won't regret it!
http://www.amazon.com/Mirage-ebook/dp/B00422LN4Y/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1292589348&sr=1-8


Cheers,
Cindy

Friday, December 17, 2010

COVERAMA - Lily Harlem's Cover

Happy release day, Lily! And what a gorgeous cover for Coverama--art by Syneca!

Get your copy today: http://www.jasminejade.com/ps-8939-50-hired.aspx

Like what you see? Check out more of Lily's sexy, exciting titles on here website:
http://lilyharlem.weebly.com/

Thursday, December 16, 2010

COVERAMA - Eliza Lloyd's Covers

 Wicked and delicous, Eliza Lloyd's covers were created by the talented Dar Albert.

Like what you see? Check out Eliza's work on the Ellora's Cave website:
http://www.jasminejade.com/m-676-eliza-lloyd.aspx

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

COVERAMA - Cris Anson's Covers

Not only do Cris Anson books display covers by Ellora's Cave art director, Syneca, they also feature some of the hottest male models in the biz--Angelo and Bobby K. YUMMMMM!

Like what you see? Visit Cris's website for more intense mystery and scorching romance: http://crisanson.com/

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

COVERAMA - Shoshanna Evers's Covers



More gorgeous covers from Ellora's Cave author Shoshanna Evers. Punishing the Art Thief--art by Reese Dante, Hollywood Spank--art by Syneca, and Ginger Snap--one of EC's gorgeous stock covers.

Like what you see? Drop by http://shoshannaevers.com/ for more delicious titles!

Monday, December 13, 2010

COVERAMA - Tess MacKall's Covers

 
The perfect accompaniment to Tess MacKall's sorching prose, here's more hot cover goodness from  Ellora's Cave artists. Black Cougar Curse by Dar Albert and Strip Down by Syneca.

Like what you see? Check out Tess's website for book hotter than a sultry southern night. http://tessmackall.com/ 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

COVERAMA

I've heard the misconception on a couple of occasions--a few day ago on CNN being the most recent--that ebooks don't have covers. Granted, they don't have pieces of paper printed with the art, but ebooks most definitely have cover art. I'm rather fond of many of my covers. I've posted my new favorite for LOVE GAME (coming soon to Ellora's Cave):

Art by Ellora's Cave cover artist Dar Albert

In the spirit of putting this erroneous assumption to rest for once and all, I've invited fellow authors to submit their ebook covers and I've got a sexy feast for the eyes in store for y'all all week long. Yes, Virginia, ebooks DO have covers!

Coverama guests:

12/13 - Tess MacKall
12/14 - Shoshanna Evers
12/15 - Cris Anson
12/16 - Eliza Lloyd
12/17 - Lily Harlem


Enjoy!
Cindy

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Virtual Book Tour--Come Undone by Kendall Grace

Good morning, y'all. Please welcome my guest Kendall Grace! She's here talking about her new release Come Undone, available now at Ellora's Cave. http://www.jasminejade.com/pm-8923-713-come-undone.aspx
Yummm :) Take it away, Kendall.



Chase has something, and although Jane isn’t exactly aware of what it is when she first meets him, she senses it—bone deep. So much so that she becomes desperate to have it—have him—at any cost. And cost her, he does.

The entire story of Come Undone unraveled after the opening line of the book popped into my head out of nowhere. I’ll never forget the first time I saw him. Eyes so gray they were almost silver, hair as black as those summer nights had been; the rich sound of his laughter at something witty my friend Sara had said.

From there a woman came to mind—someone who was at a lost point in her life who could become vulnerable to a player. I thought back to the first rush of love most of us experience in high school—that desperate, do-anything behavior we fall victim to because we don’t know any better. I channeled that into a grown woman. What happens when she does know better, but can’t walk away? What force could drive her to stay in a situation she knows isn’t in her best interest? My answer? Lust.

What Chase does to her body, and her reaction to it, is unlike anything Jane has ever experienced. Despite warnings she succumbs to what he’s offering and does her best to keep her heart out of it. But as she discovers sides to the man he desperately attempts to hide, she realizes she is lost forever. He truly has something she can’t walk away from, no matter how hard she tries, no matter how hard he fights her.

The combination of setting, circumstance and desperation are what drive the sexual tension between Chase and Jane. Each of them is fighting their own demons, and the individual struggles feed into the energy that draws them to one another. The result changes both of them forever, and they each discover there are parts to themselves so deeply hidden neither were aware they existed until the fateful summer they spend together reveals their truths.

Blurb:
My sister became dependent on painkillers after a skiing accident left her leg broken in three places. I didn’t understand and, yes, I judged her. After all, we were talking about her will. No one was forcing those pills down her throat. It seemed very cut-and-dried to me back then. But I know differently now.

The first time Chase touched her, Jane finally understood addiction…understood the aching need, the keen want for more…more of his hands…his mouth…his tongue. His complete mastery over her body. She knew the suffocation of crushing anxiety as she waited for her next hit, the flash of terrific pain when it didn’t come.

Chase seems unwilling to give Jane what she needs; what she ultimately craves above all else. But addicts can’t think beyond the fix. They’ll resort to desperate measures to feed their need…even if they lose themselves in the process. Even if they come undone...

Excerpt:
It’s been two weeks.

The protest struggled to the forefront of my mind and I must have said it aloud because he stopped, settling his gray gaze on mine.

“You’re mad,” he said.

I ducked under the cage of his arm and stepped around him. “What did you expect, Chase? You show up at my house, screw me senseless and then disappear. For two weeks. Who does that?”

The corners of his lips turned up in a sly smile. “You.”

“Excuse me?”

He stepped toward me, placing his hands on my hips, tugging me until I was plastered against him. “You. Jane.”

“What are you talking about?” I asked, wondering what freaky color the sky was in his world.

Chase stared into my eyes until I thought I would shatter from the vibration of my racing heart. Kissing the corner of my mouth, he whispered, “There I was.” He placed a kiss on the opposite corner of my lips. “Sitting at my desk. Staring at the phone.”

His hand began a slow trek beneath my skirt again. “You didn’t call. You didn’t write.” The tip of his finger brushed my center, the wet silk of my panties betraying me. “I was devastated.” A gentle torture commenced inside my underwear as he added another finger to the mix.

“I, um…” A long sigh escaped my lips at his ministrations. “You can’t be serious.” Damn, but this man could spin some bullshit. But he could also… “Oh God, that feels good.”

“Um-hmm.” He gently bit my lower lip then feathered a kiss over it. “It could feel a whole lot better, believe me.”

I did. I knew. It would…if I let it happen.

Kendall's Links:
Get your copy of Come Undone today: http://www.jasminejade.com/pm-8923-713-come-undone.aspx



Monday, December 6, 2010

Like a what???

As a writer of erotic romance, I spend a lot of time making sure a sex scene sounds (and looks and smells and tastes and feels) GOOD. It's probably unhealthy how much I think about and analyze what's sexy. But this morning a friend let me know that my diligence has paid off. At least for this year.

"You'll be glad to know," he said, "that none of your sex scenes were nominated for the Literary Review Bad Sex Award."

"The what?" I asked.

"Bad Sex Award. Rowan Somerville won this year."

Curiosity piqued, I ran to my laptop and discovered this http://www.literaryreview.co.uk/badsex.html. And I have to say, I agree with the commitee's choice. In his novel, The Shape of Her, Somerville wrote, "...like a lepidopterist mounting a tough-skinned insect with a too blunt pin he screwed himself into her.”* Now, in Somerville's defense, this line came from a sex scene that was NOT intended to be sexy. The description refers to two people who are dysfunctional and having a rough time of it. That being said, the simile IS a wee bit over the top. First of all--as evidenced by the picture above--pinning a butterfly is a pretty delicate activity which doesn't seem to be Somerville's intention judging from, "...screwed himself into her." Also, I can only imagine that working the word "lepidopterist" into a sex scene was a dare issued by a fellow writer. Seems like he's trying too hard. Not a criticism, we've all been there (though I'm pretty sure my editor would smack me on the knuckles with a ruler if this phrase came across her desk, lol). Perhaps Somerville's editor deserves the award for letting that sentence fly. Anyhoo, hats off to Rowan Somerville for accepting the award with good humor by stating, "There is nothing more English than bad sex, so on behalf of the entire nation I would like to thank you.”*


Cheers, Rowan! Keep on keeping on ;D


*quoted from quoted from http://hypervocal.com/news/2010/bad-sex-award-winner-lepidopterist-mounting-a-tough-skinned-insect/

Friday, December 3, 2010

Gone but not forgotten

Good morning, y'all. I'm a little late with my post on World AIDS Day, but it's a cause near and dear to my heart so I wanted to post a red ribbon on my blog for my wonderful friend who passed away three years ago due to a lung infection caused by AIDS.

He was the brightest star in my galaxy, self-proclaimed vice-president of serendipities and the most joyful person I've every known. Thank you, my friend, for being part of my life for nine years. Thank you for introducing me to the Finnish beverage glögg, though the hangover almost killed me. Thank you for always paying for the drinks, even when you didn't have to. Thank you for trying to steer me away from temptation and never scolding me when I gave into it. Thank you for sharing your words with me--Belize lives forever in my heart and it's where I hope you're spending eternity. You are loved and you are missed.





Namaste.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

YAY! I've been pirated!

What, Cindy? Have you finally lost your tenuous grip on sanity? No, I haven't. I'm still hanging on by a thread ;) But--in a way--I was happy to find my book on a pirate site. Yes, I'm really annoyed someone chose to undercut me and my publisher. Yes, I think piracy of any kind (except the Captain Jack Sparrow persuasion) is deplorable. And yes, I really hope folks will pay the buck fifty to download it here: http://www.jasminejade.com/ps-8822-138-leap.aspx instead of paying for membership to a pirate site so they can steal as many books as they want. BUT...I'm also kinda flattered. I mean I've been working for years to get my work noticed and hey, this is a sign that I've been noticed, right? When all is said and done, people are people. Most people do the right thing and those who don't aren't worth my sweat. Is giving myself an ulcer over the lost sales going to change the fact that these sites are an unsavory part of modern life? No. Is hollering and screaming going to make me feel better? Well, maybe a little, but mostly no. So, I choose to look at the positive side of the situation--I've been pirated therefore I must be worth ripping off. As I told a good friend on Facebook: It's either laugh or cry. I choose laughter.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The "P" Word

Yeah, you know which one I'm talking about--slang for the female sex organ, the one that also mean "kitty cat". I was working on a manuscript yesterday and I needed to reference the heroine's lady parts. I found myself stuck, groping for the right word. Now, I'm not adverse to using the "P" word, but for me, it's just not a romantic word and I'm working on a romantic sex scene. What to do, what to do? Sure, there are lots of words for the various parts of a woman's nether regions and plenty of euphemisms--chocha and hoo hoo being among my favorites, but euphemisms and metaphors just sound silly. So really there are only two viable options for the complete package: the not-so-nice "P" word and the more controversial "C" word. Yep, the "C" word is another blog topic all together, lol.

While I make my decision regarding my word usage, I thought I'd put the topic out there for readers and other authors. How do y'all feel about the "P" word? Are you okay with it? Love it, hate it? Use it liberally or shy away from it? Does it matter the context in which it's used--okay for erotica, not okay for romance?  Is there another term you prefer? Inquiring minds want to know.