Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!

It's the last day of 2012, and I'm glad to see it over with. I hope 2013 is a much kinder year to humankind, and my biggest hope for the new year is that people stop shooting each other in our communities.

If you're looking for something steamy to read tonight, all of my Callie Croix titles with Carina Press are on sale right now. They're selling for $2.50 at the Kindle store and a bit more than that over at B&N.

Also, Tactical Strike is up for presale at the Kindle store as well, and it's being offered for only $2.99!

Here's the back cover blurb:

Gunship pilot Captain Candace Bradford has worked long and hard to earn her rank and position within the male-dominated world of Air Force Special Operations. She's not about to let anything or anyone jeopardize that, let alone one sinfully tempting man who seems determined to cause her nothing but trouble. Even if she's starting to fall for him.

As an elite Combat Controller, Staff Sergeant Ryan Wentworth is used to overcoming adversity in order to complete a mission. Breaking through Candace's prickly exterior and into her heart is a challenge he can't let go. But just when he's begun to gain her trust, they're thrown together in the field facing an overwhelming enemy force.

Candace and Ryan find themselves on the run, searching the skies for an emergency extraction. But one dangerous enemy has an agenda in mind and he'll use whatever means necessary to achieve it, including using American forces to do his dirty work.

Here's to a happy, healthy and prosperous new year to us all! 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sharon Hamilton and Her SEAL Heroes

Author Sharon Hamilton is over at Writers Gone Wild today, talking about her SEAL heroes and giving away a copy of her latest romantic suspense. Come on by to enter the contest!

Getting ready for the holidays here at our place. The boys have two Christmas concerts tomorrow and then we're hosting an early Christmas dinner for hubby's side of the family on Saturday night. Then we're booked every day right through to the 29th! Yikes.

Hope you enjoy the holidays!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Hurry! Hurry hard!

Holy cow, only two weeks until Christmas Eve!!!

On Friday I wrapped up revisions on Lethal Pursuit (Maya and Jackson's story), the third and probably final installment of the Bagram Special Ops series. I sent it off to my editor and likely won't see it again for at least a month or two. Hope she likes it! It's very fast paced and dark, even brutal in spots.

Between now and Christmas I plan to get my holiday preparations finished and hopefully do a bit more drafting of my new R/S project. In early January I have to do heavy revisions (AKA a major rewrite) of my Civil War romance, The Vacant Chair. I have the most gorgeous cover for it but I don't want to show it until I have a better handle on a release date. The book is due to my editor February 1st, and I'm pretty sure that despite all my work before handing it in, I'll still have lots of work to do once I get it back from her. *cough*

I'm sure a lot of you are wrapped up in the middle of Christmas madness right now. This coming weekend is my hubby's staff party. Every year the office goes to a local curling rink, and every year my hubby's team seems to be pitted against mine in the final. He's beaten me the last two years, even though I taught him everything he knows about curling. Gah. I have to step up my game!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Cover Reveal

Woot! I just got the final art work for the cover of Tactical Strike, Ace and Ryan's book, and I love it. If you want to imagine Ryan with a scruffy russet-colored beard though, that's quite okay by me since that's how he looks for most of the story. But there is one particular scene at the end of the book where he's clean shaven (and oh, it's a steamy one if I do say so myself), so it's all good. It comes out March 11th!

This weekend is the start of the Christmas madness, and I'm sure it is for many of you as well. Our December calendar is stuffed full. Stuffed, I tell you. Parties, gatherings, concerts, dinners, more parties... You guys should see our house right now. It's all decked out for the holidays so I'll try to post some pictures.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Book Giveaway!

Today I'm participating in Paloma Beck's birthday blog hop and giving away a digital copy of Deadly Descent to one of the winners. Click here to go to her blog and enter!Some other authors participating are Laura Kaye, Kallypso Masters and Keta Diablo. Happy birthday, Paloma!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Going To Print!

I got the most awesome email today from Angela James, executive editor for Carina Press. She told me that Harlequin has decided to pick up Darkest Caress as one of their June direct-to-customer program titles. So, I'm going to print! Not in stores, though any leftover copies from the program will be available for sale on the Harlequin website, and I get author copies as well. Woot!

I know a lot of my readers don't love paranormal books, but I've received a surprising number of emails asking when the next book in the series is coming out. I feel so torn! I'm working on another single title romantic suspense right now (featuring military contractors in Pakistan), but I'm definitely interested in writing both Cade's and Vaughn's stories. Especially Vaughn's.

I'm about a quarter of the way through the draft of this next book, and Lethal Pursuit (Bagram Special Ops #3) is due to my editor in mid-December. It's all done, so I'm going to start revisions in early December. In the meantime I hope to hammer out most of this draft.

Read any great books lately? Would love to hear some recommendations.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Holiday goodness

Being that we're now into November, that means it's the start of the Christmas season here at our place. And, according to tradition, the first wave of decorations went up this weekend. Added to my collection this year is this Grinch quilt, which I finished up last week. It's so cozy and snuggly.

My father and step mother arrived home safely after their three month trek across all the -stans (Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, etc--they even dipped across the border into Afghanistan!), so I'm relieved. I wasn't too crazy on them being over there, but they managed okay. My father said again he wished I'd gone with them, especially the leg across Tajikistan and the border of A-stan. You know, since I write about that stuff.

I'll be honest--I'm quite happy to look at their trip through pictures, rather than experiencing it firsthand. Some of the places they traveled to were extremely rough (they slept in tents in the desert, no running water or plumbing or heat, and even had to kill a goat at one point), and there have been kidnapping and shootings between the locals and the military. At any rate, they're home safe and sound and that's all I care about. My Christmas wish came early this year!

And, if you're looking for some holiday reading right now, Katie Reus has another installment of her Red Stone Security romantic suspense series out. Miami, Mistletoe and Murder is only 99 cents!

Blurb: Fierce and sexy, former Marine Travis Sanchez has always held himself back from the rest of the world, using his tattoos and piercings as armor. But when the woman he’s wanted for months is threatened, he knows it’s time to strip away the bad boy image and show her just how much he wants to be with her. As one of Red Stone Security’s best contractors, Travis is trained for almost any situation. But nothing prepares him for the most dangerous threat of all: the one to his heart.

Kind-hearted Noel Baskov’s only wish for the holidays is that her Miami coffee shop has a successful Christmas season. But her focus on work is interrupted when the family of the young girl she mentors is threatened, and the man she’s been lusting after for months steps in to handle it. Unfortunately the danger is far from over. Can this sexy and mysterious warrior protect Noel? Or will he be the one to shatter her heart.

Warning: features a heroine determined to fight for those she cares about, a protective hero with a very interesting piercing, and some holiday magic.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Fall Recap

It's been forever since I posted here, so I'll do a quick rundown of what I've been up to for the last while.

A couple of weeks ago we pulled a big surprise on our kids. We drove them to the airport and announced we were going to Disneyland for a week. They were thrilled, except my big guy (8) was really ill with a high fever and sore throat the day we traveled, and it was too late to cancel all our reservations so he had to tough it out. He was a trooper, but a few days into the trip he broke out in a weird blistery rash that we later found out was hand, foot and mouth disease. Yeah.

The rest of the family was spared, but then I got sick with a really awful cold and passed it onto my little guy (6). Running fevers and going through boxes of Kleenex is not my idea of a good time and certainly put a damper on our trip, especially considering the crowds and the temperatures being in the mid to upper nineties. The best part of the trip was the night before we came home, when we were mostly on the mend and attended Mickey's Halloween Party. The kids dressed up in costume and actually got to trick-or-treat in the Magic Kingdom that night. Expensive, but worth it to see their excited smiles.

Since returning home I've started the draft of my next book, received my gorgeous cover for my Civil War romance I'm self-publishing next year (Not sharing it yet! I'm turning it into a freelance editor in February for a thorough critique), and finished most of a Grinch Who Stole Christmas quilt. Since we're Christmas fanatics around here, we pull out the decorations the weekend following Halloween, which of course is this coming weekend.

The news reports coming in about the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy are unreal. If you live on the eastern seaboard, I hope you're safe!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Counting My Blessings

It's the Thanksgiving long weekend here in Canada and I have a lot to be thankful for. On Saturday night we hosted 18 people for dinner (including 7 children--yes, it was loud!), yesterday was my 12th wedding anniversary, and today we're having my side of the family's dinner at my aunt's house. I love turkey dinner :)

The other great thing about this weekend is that I finished the draft of Jackson and Maya's book! It's not due for a long time but this gives me a chance to put it away for a while and revisit it with fresh eyes when I dig into it before sending it to my editor. We're leaving next weekend on a surprise trip to Disneyland with the boys, so it'll be nice not to worry about deadlines or anything for a while.

Do you remember that old Civil War manuscript I wrote a long time ago? I've decided to get out my red pen and take another crack at it. I plan to self publish it next year, maybe late spring. I know it's really different from my other books but I love the story and want to put it out there.

In the meantime, what the heck should I write now???

And, Katie Reus has yet another new release in her Red Stone Security series. Fatal Deception is book 3 in this hot romantic suspense series, and it's only $2.99. This story is dark and edgy and I love the chemistry between the hero and heroine.

Fatal Deception (Red Stone Security Series)Blurb: Mara Caldwell is a woman with a dark past. She made a clean break from her old life, never imagining her secrets could come back to haunt her. When an old enemy surfaces and threatens the world she’s created for herself Mara is prepared to give up everything, including the husband she loves if it will keep him safe.

Harrison knew his wife had secrets when he married her, but when he discovers the truth, it’s far worse than he imagined. He's determined to protect her from a deadly enemy who wants to destroy her, but her lack of faith in him infuriates and wounds him. They must work together to keep her safe, but the man they're up against seeks to destroy everything they've built together. Including their lives.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Plugging Away

This past weekend I went through copy edits and finalized Tactical Strike, so now it's off to the magical land of production for it's March release. I've also done up a glossary of military terms that I hope the Carina Press team will include in the book, so all those acronyms don't confuse my readers. It's written in Ryan's POV, so his personality shines through in the descriptions.

I'm also about two-thirds through the first draft of Maya and Jackson's story and starting to think about what I want to write next. I'd really like to finish up the paranormal trilogy I started with Darkest Caress, but we'll see.

Soccer season started this past weekend as well. My 6 year old lost his first tooth, so he was super excited about that. More so than about his soccer game :)

Hope everyone is enjoying the transition into fall. Here in Vancouver we've had an unusually dry August and September, with 5% of our normal rainfall. We haven't had any real rainfall since early August, and it's very weird. I keep waiting for the fall rains to set in so I can dig out my boots and sweaters. I love the fall storms! Uh, except for when I have to stand out in the wind and rain for soccer.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

In the Swing of Things

School's back in session now, so we're all getting into the old routine around here. So far the transition has been relatively painless, and soon there'll be soccer schedules added into the mix.

Today  is the first day in weeks that I don't have either kids to entertain or edits to get done, so I'm hoping to get most of a chapter written today on Maya and Jackson's book. Edits for Tactical Strike are in the final phase now, and I've decided I really do like the story after all. That's always a good thing.

In book release news, Katie Reus has yet another book out this week (she writes so fast it floors me), this one the second full length novel in her paranormal shifter romance Moon Shifter series. Primal Possession hit the shelves on Tuesday and has already garnered rave reviews.

Blurb: To protect her, he will unleash the beast within…

As his pack’s second-in-command, lupine shifter Liam Armstrong gives orders and takes what he wants—until he meets red-headed, blue-eyed December McIntyre. Liam knows the human beauty is his intended mate the moment he sees her, but December is far too strong-willed to accept his protection.

December, whose brother is the town sheriff, has every reason to mistrust shifters after one killed her youngest sibling. But the forceful and handsome Liam has gotten under her skin in a way she hadn’t thought possible, and the desire she feels for him is almost too much to bear.

When a radical hate group targets all humans known to sympathize with paranormal beings, December is attacked in her bookstore. Reluctantly, she turns to the only one who can help her: Liam. And he is going to take her to places within herself she never knew existed.

Happy reading!

Kaylea :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Summer's End

Hard to believe it's almost September and my boys will be in school again next week. That's life, right? It flies past us at breakneck speed.

I received edits for Tactical Strike on Friday and they're not half as heavy as I feared they would be. I love it when that happens! My editor even liked and agreed we should keep a scene near the end where Ryan meets Candace's, uh...unconventional grandmother. It's actually a family anecdote about my grandmother, and ever word of it is true. When you'll read it you'll wonder if I'm lying, but I promise you I'm not. She was a character in life, and now I've made her one for real. I always promised to immortalize her.

My dad and stepmom are currently on a three month vacation to all the countries ending with "stan", including the "safe" parts of Afghanistan. Why would anyone want to do that, you ask? They're very adventurous. I'm not. I get my adventure by writing about what's going on in that corner of the world.


Hope my heroes don't think less of me for staying home. *g*

Tactical Strike is set to release sometime next March. I'll let you know when I receive the official release date. I'm about a third of the way through the draft of Jackson and Maya's story. It's pretty wrenching so far.

I hope you all had a fabulous summer. Any really great summer experiences you'd like to share with me?

Monday, August 6, 2012

Hitting A Wall

I'm scheduled to being edits on Tactical Strike (Ace and Ryan's book) next week, and have frantically been trying to verify little details about things in the story before I receive the manuscript back from my editor.

I have a couple of trusted sources I always turn to, including a retired PJ who has been incredibly sweet and patient with me regarding all the copious questions I send him. He's never condescending or disrespectful even though he knows that all this info is for a romance novel. I love that guy.

Because my characters belong to AFSOC, certain details are murky or unknown for security's sake, and I can't seem to find the information I'm looking for. And there's a reason for that.

Well. In my desperation to tease out last little bits and pieces, I tracked down a gunship crew chief group on Facebook and posted a couple of questions. Turns out that wasn't my brightest idea ever.

In hindsight the questions I asked were of a sensitive nature, and I never should have posted them in such a public forum. Long story short, I was shot down in short order. Hard. In trying to make my story as accurate as I possibly can, I inadvertently offended and pissed off the very people I admire so much and want to spotlight in my books.

I posted an apology (don't you just love Canadians?) and most of them seemed to accept it, but told me not to post any more retarded questions.

Yeah. Lesson learned.

So, in the end my books will be as accurate as I can make them, but please know they won't be perfect in their detail. Hope you'll still get a good sense of what these AFSOC folks do out there in harm's way.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Bagram Books

Summer's in full swing here, and it's been a busy one so far. The boys were in day camp last week and will be again next week, so I'm managing to carve out some time at the keyboard. Since I'm not a very fast writer, these "days off" from mommy duty have been a godsend and so far I'm ahead of schedule on my deadlines.

My editor is due to send developmental edits for Ace and Ryan's story soon, and I've just sent her the proposal (synopsis and first three chapters) of Maya and Jackson's book.

This morning I heard from Carina Press about the titles for the books, and it looks like they're going to be called Tactical Strike (Ace and Ryan's book), and Lethal Pursuit (Maya and Jackson's story). Woot! No word on release dates yet, but that's a long ways off yet. Will keep you posted. In the meantime, enjoy your summer!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Bagram Special Ops Series and Giveaway

I'm over at the Ex Libre blog today, talking about my Bagram Special Ops series and giving away a copy of Deadly Descent to one commenter. Mmm, all those yummy AFSOC heroes...

Stop by and say hello for a chance to win!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Beware: Writer at Work

I'm almost finished with revisions on Danger Close (currently in the process of being retitled). Right now I'm picking at the details and trying to work everything into the story smoothly. I want to show/teach my readers about what my characters do, but without making them feel like they're taking a class. Lol. I also started plotting out Maya and Jackson's story. It's gonna be a nail biter!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Baby Humpback

Kind of a sad day here. You all know how much I love whales, yes? And in particular humpbacks? I even went out on a whale watching tour in Kauai in hopes that I would catch a glimpse of one in the wild. Just before we turned back toward the harbor at sunset, we saw a mother and her calf surface, then their humps and flukes as they dove again. It was magical and was a big highlight of the trip for me.

Well, this morning, we had a something highly unusual happen. Here on the west coast we get gray whales and orcas (killer whales) in our waters. This morning, however, a lone baby humpback washed up on shore close to us, and died. This poor baby got tangled in a fishing net far to the west of us while he swam north toward Alaska with his mother. The calf's fluke and body were covered in deep lacerations from the nets. It was very sad. My aunt and I took the boys down to see it, not realizing it had already died. The boys had brought their pails to pour water over the baby to keep its skin from drying out. We were all very sad to hear it had passed away.

 Crowds of people were gathered around it, and a few people had placed flowers on its head. I hate to think of it suffering such a horrific death, frightened and far away from its mother, who must have stayed with it as long as possible. When the mothers give birth down in Hawaii and other tropical places, they don't feed for months, starving while the baby nurses and gains enough strength to make the trek to either Alaska or the Antarctic, where the mother can feed again. My heart breaks for them both. 

I was glad to see my boys were deeply touched by this animal's plight. I make them watch National Geographic shows all the time, especially oceanography or anything to do with whales. Big weasel came out with me on the catamaran in Kauai to see the humpbacks in the wild, so seeing this calf really hit home for him.

Monday, June 4, 2012

No Pressure

It's the start of June already, which means I have only three more weeks until my two weasels are out of school for the summer. It also means I have to get as much writing done as possible before that happens! Since I'm writing on deadline for the first time and have two manuscripts due August 1st, you'd better believe I found some camps to put the boys in. But they're cool camps. One is going to a Star Wars and a junior film makers camp, and the other is doing a space and junior scientist camp.

I've finished the draft of Danger Close (which will probably be retitled), and now have to put it aside while I do edits for a Callie Croix release coming out early next year (Covert Seduction). Once that's done, I'll be juggling line edits and copy edits for that story while I revise and polish Danger Close. After that I plan to take the first week of August off, to let some ideas percolate in my little brain for Jackson and Maya's book.I'm certain by then I'll need the break!

I also entered Deadly Descent into the 2013 EPIC Awards, so please cross your fingers and toes that someone falls in love with Cam and Dev's story. And, because I've been such a good girl and working so hard, I bought myself this pretty little Victorian jacket that I'm very excited about. I keep waiting and hoping that hoop skirts will come back in style again while I'm alive...

Monday, May 28, 2012

Blogging With Laura Kaye

Happy Memorial Day to my friends down south. I hope you're all having a safe and happy long weekend. I love this picture because it's so raw, and I feel it sends an important message. So if you're out enjoying festivities today, please take a moment to remember what the holiday is truly about. We owe so much to our men and women in uniform (including first responders) and their families who make countless sacrifices along the way.

The gorgeous and insanely talented Laura Kaye is hosting me on her blog today for a giveaway for Darkest Caress, and I also talk a bit about the Bagram series. To enter the contest for a digital copy of Darkest Caress, just leave me a comment there.

Also, I was informed this morning that Darkest Caress is up for a readers' choice award at the Grave Tells review site. Please click here to follow the link to vote for the book if you liked it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Bagram Special Ops Series

It's official! Carina Press has offered me a contract for both the second and third books in the Bagram Special Ops series. Both books will release sometime in 2013.

Here's a shot that gives you an idea of how Ryan and Ace work together :) Pretty deadly combination. I'm still working on finding out particular details from various military/former military contacts I've been put in touch with, and hope to get those ironed out in the coming weeks so I can really make this story shine. I want to do justice to Air Force Combat Controllers and Spooky gunship crews with this book.

CCTs are a dedicated, highly trained bunch, and their discipline under fire and in combat has earned them many awards in recent years.  They work not only in war zones, but also in humanitarian relief efforts like the aftermath of the devastating Haiti earthquake to help direct air traffic in and out of a stricken area when no one else can or will.

Ace and Ryan's story (working title Danger Close) is due August 1st, then I'll start in on book 3.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Rayne, Dec, Ben, Rhys and Luke are on Sale! Pass the Word

My award winning romantic suspense series with The Wild Rose Press is now on sale for 2.99 per book. Buy links for each of the five books can be found on my website, but here's the link to my author page on Amazon.

The series goes in this order:
Out of Her League
Cover of Darkness
No Turning Back

If you know of any romantic suspense fans that might be interested, please spread the word!

Had another busy weekend at the ballpark, and my 8 y.o. had his first communion today followed by a reception and a family gathering, so it's been another whirlwind.

I'm getting close to the end of the draft of Ace and Ryan's book, and will keep you all posted about its status.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Callie Croix Release Sale

I heard from Carina Press this morning that my naughty alter ego, Callie Croix, is having a sale on her upcoming release. Let Me In (featuring Liam, from No Holds Barred) officially releases May 21st, but it's being offered for only $0.99 at all vendors throughout the entire month of May. You can find the buy links on Callie's website.

It's an erotic romance, but a gentle and loving one, nothing too heavy or dark. I dearly love the hero, Liam, and since I'm sort of addicted to the show Hoarders, I (uh, Callie, that is) had to include a hoarder character in a story and Let Me In gave me/Callie the chance. Of course Liam's former military (Callie loves her men in uniform too, you know), but this time the heroine is a Marine also.

Blurb: On leave for Thanksgiving, the last thing marine lieutenant Talia Barnett expects to find is Liam Brodie waiting for her at the airport. He’s had a starring role in her fantasies for the past two years, and although she’d love to make them a reality, she has a dark secret that prevents her from taking things further.
A former Marine, Liam’s specialty is planning tactical operations, and that’s just what he plans to do to win Talia. The woman has kept him at arm’s length for too long, and this time he’s finally going to claim her—body and heart.
What begins as comfort quickly turns hot. When Liam shows Talia a hint of the dominant nature inside him, the submissive part of her flares to life. Though she desires him, she’s going back on deployment and doesn’t want to dump all her drama on him. Will he find a way to break through the protective walls around her heart and convince her they have a future that goes far beyond the bedroom?

Monday, April 30, 2012

Cam and Dev Finish 2nd

Got word yesterday that Deadly Descent placed 2nd in the New England RWA published contest, runner up to one of Marie Force's books. Since Marie is a romantic suspense phenom, I'm feeling pretty good about coming in 2nd to her.

I'm well past the half way point in Ace and Ryan's story now, and am currently tormenting them will all kinds of evil things up in the Hindu Kush Mountains. Did you know authors are evil? We are to our characters, anyway.

Baseball season is in full swing now, so I've been spending quite a bit of time at the ball park cheering on my two weasels. My garden is looking gorgeous right now, but those nefarious black vine weevils are at it again, so in a couple weeks everything will be shredded out there. Sigh.

In happier news, I just got confirmation that we will indeed be heading back to Kauai next March (yay!) with my dad and stepmom. My fave cousin Mike (who I dedicated Darkest Caress to) is getting married there during our trip, so it's perfect. We can't wait to go back and soak up some more island paradise. 

Any exciting spring developments in your world?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Darkest Caress is Unleashed!

It's release day! Darkest Caress is officially unleashed upon the world. I hope you fall in love with this new cast of characters.

I'm at the lovely Cynthia Eden's blog today, as well as at Novel Thoughts to do a digital giveaway of the book. To enter, just stop by either site and leave a comment.

Happy reading and I hope you all have a great week!

Kaylea :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Darkest Caress Giveaway

Holy smokes, it's only six days until release day! *gasps*

Today I'm at the paranormal Darker Temptations blog talking about my wild and wonderful adventures in Lithuania that gave rise to the premise for Darkest Caress, as well as some particular events of the trip that I absolutely have to include in the next two books. They're just too good to pass up! Plus you'll get to learn a bit about my favorite cousin, Mike, whom I will introduce a bit more in a future post. I adore him, and he's really the reason I went on the trip to the Baltic States in 2009. So really, Darkest Caress and my venture into paranormal waters are all his fault. (Thus I will blame him for any bad reviews! He's got broad shoulders--he can take it.)

I'm giving away a digital copy of Darkest Caress to a commenter, so please drop by to enter.

Have a great week, everyone!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Darkest Caress: The Empowered Series

I promised I'd post the cover and blurb for Darkest Caress, which is due out April 23rd from Carina Press. This book is a bit of a departure for me, since it's a paranormal romance, and many readers have asked me why I chose to write something outside of romantic suspense. 

The short answer is, I wanted to find an agent to represent me, and since the few military romantic suspense titles I'd submitted to agents didn't get me anywhere, I thought I'd try a "hotter" genre and see if that helped. At the time paranormal romance was very hot, and after taking a trip to the Baltic States, some folklore I learned about in Lithuania piqued my interest enough that it inspired an idea for a new series. Hence, the idea for the Empowered was born, and Darkest Caress is the first installment. The manuscript did not garner me an agent after all, but I was lucky enough that my current publisher wanted to acquire it.

I don't plan to stop writing military romance, though I'm not sure yet whether I'll write the remaining books in the Empowered series. I intend to finish Danger Close (2nd Bagram Special Ops book, Ace and Ryan's story) as soon as possible, then simultaneously work on book three of that series, along with the 2nd Empowered book (Cade's story). Right now it's a case of wait and see on the paranormal stories, to find out if there's even any reader interest for more Empowered books.

For those of you waiting for word on Ace and Ryan's story, I hope to have news about Danger Close within the next few months. Fingers crossed! In the meantime, here's what Darkest Caress is all about. The story is dark and the hero extremely yummy, but the Baltic mythology woven into the book is what inspired me to write it in the first place.

Blurb: Two-hundred-year-old Daegan Blackwell is one of the last remaining Empowered, an ancient magical race. Daegan’s duty is to lead and protect his remaining Brethren in the coming war foretold by prophecy. The last thing he expects is to meet the one woman who will either save or destroy him—his destined mate. Fiercely independent Realtor Olivia Farrell believes darkly handsome Daegan is simply a prospective client. Until she’s attacked by a man with a strange aura—and Daegan fights him off, taking away her pain with just his touch. At first, Olivia refuses to believe she’s part of a magical race, yet mounting evidence and her powerful chemistry with Daegan are too strong to deny.
But as Daegan’s partner, Olivia becomes a target in the battle between good and evil that threatens her life, as well as the very existence of the Empowered. And the only one who can save her is the man claiming to be her destiny…

Friday, March 30, 2012

Luke Won!!!

I'm so excited to announce that Absolution has won the EPIC Award for best romantic suspense of 2011!

I actually found out by accident while I was on holiday. I happened to be on Twitter, checking to see if I had any messages, and saw my name mentioned with the EPIC convention. No one sent me an email or anything, so I had to check on my own to see if I really had won, and indeed I had! I had a mojito to celebrate at dinner that night :)

You all know how much I adore Luke, so this win really tickled me. I think it's my best book (along with Relentless), although I heartily agree it's not a stand alone book. Without reading at least a few other books in the series, Absolution won't have nearly the same emotional impact for the reader. At least in my opinion.

I also just found out that Deadly Descent is a finalist in the New England Romance Writer's published contest, though it didn't final in the RITA Awards (aww...). Fingers crossed that Dev and Cam place in the top three.

That's my news for now; I'll post the cover for Darkest Caress next week. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Home Again

Got home from our holiday obscenely early on Tuesday morning, so now it's back to the grind. It's hard, as this is the only vacation where I wish I could have stayed another month. Kauai was paradise found, and we had so much fun. We kayaked and hiked up to a waterfall, we tubed down an old irrigation canal on a former sugar cane plantation, we took a catamaran sail to see humpback whales in the wild, and we even fit in a bike ride along the beach, a luau and a horseback ride right down to the ocean. All of us are eagerly anticipating our return next March when my favorite cousin gets married there.

Here's the view from one of the restaurants at our hotel. Pretty nice, eh?

And here's a shot of me kayaking down the Wailua River.
Hubby's in the back helping me paddle since we're towing the weasels behind us upriver against a head wind. Had a great time.

Got my cover for Darkest Caress, which comes out April 23rd. It's my favorite cover to date and I'll post it next week.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Aloha Bound

In just a little while I'll be heading back to paradise, this time on the garden island of Kauai.

And there'd better not be any natural disasters this trip!

We were on the Big Island last year when the Japan earthquake and tsunami hit, forcing us to evacuate from our hotel in the middle of the night and sleep on the side of the mountain in our rental car. Much more drama and excitement than I was looking for, frankly. This can't happen every time I got to the Hawaiian Islands, right?

I plan to eat my weight in macadamia nuts and see some humpback whales up close, as I didn't get to do that last trip. You have no idea how much I'm looking forward to going someplace warm!

Monday, March 5, 2012

End of an Era

I feel like I should wear black at least all this week to publicly mourn the retirement of my hero, Boston Red Sox captain Jason Varitek. Tek retired with grace and dignity on his own terms March 1st, though everyone has high hopes there will still be some place for him within the BoSox organization. He would make one hell of a manager, I'll tell you that much.

I've never been so attached to a professional athlete before, so I've never had to experience watching my favorite team without my hero at the helm. This year when I watch the Sox, some of the magic will be gone for me. Tek was a consummate professional both on and off the field, and is touted as one of the best prepared and hardest working catcher in the game. There's a reason his teammates bestowed that letter C he wore over his heart for so many seasons.

My favorite memory of Tek was a couple years ago when he was rehabbing a foot fracture. My hubby took me down to Seattle to watch the Sox play the Mariners at Safeco field, and partway through the game Tek came out of the dugout and headed toward the outfield where the bullpen is. Hubby nudged me and we both walked around the stadium to stand by the bullpen fence to watch him warm up a pitcher. He was maybe twenty feet away from me, in full and glorious living color, all six foot two of his delicious frame crouched behind the plate. My heart was pounding like crazy, and I'll admit I was completely eating him up with my eyes (it's okay--my hubby totally understood, lol).

After a few minutes of catching Tek stood up to stretch his legs and tipped his mask back on his head. It was just me, hubby and some homeless-looking guy standing at the fence watching. Tek looked over at me, and I swear on my childrens' lives, he smiled a little and winked at me. (Either that or he had something in his eye at the exact moment he turned his head to look at me. I'm going with the wink theory, thanks.)

I almost died. My face went all kinds of red and though hubby was elbowing me in the ribs saying, "Say something, say something!", I just couldn't. I think I smiled and maybe raised my hand in a wave, but I'm not sure. I just know that my face was pretty damn hot at that moment.

That's as close as I ever got to meeting or speaking with my hero, but it was incredible and something I'll never forget.

Last year in September a friend of mine flew out to Toronto to watch them play the Sox. Since he's friends with a few of the Blue Jays, he and his son were welcomed onto the field. Who should they come across but the captain of the BoSox himself, Jason Varitek, just after batting practice. My friend knew what a rabid fan I am of Tek's, so he went over and asked him to sign a baseball for me. Which he did. Okay, he totally spelled my name wrong, but I think it's because my friend doesn't know how to spell my name right. That ball is one of my most treasured possessions, and it marks one of the last games Tek had in the majors.
I'll always love the BoSox, but there's a hollow sensation in my gut now. Knowing he'll never be behind the plate again is hard to take. I'll always have the memory of that wink, though, and the ball signed just for me.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Act Of Valor

Well, I don't know about you, but I know exactly what I'll be doing this Friday night. See, there's this new movie out called Act Of Valor that has me just a teensy bit excited.

It features active duty Navy SEALs. For real. I was skeptical of this at first too, but through all of my research and conversations with various contacts of mine, I've learned it's true (and I lost a bet with my hubby because of it!). Apparently the film started out as a recruitment video, and it was just too good not to turn into a full length movie. As a result of using actual SEALs in the film, the action sequences and the mission profiles are highly realistic.

Here's the official trailer:

You'd better believe I'll be seeing this one! I'm also interested to see how they portray the impact on family life, because to me that has to be one of the toughest things for everyone involved.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Alpha Instinct

I'm so excited to announce that Katie Reus's first Moon Shifter book comes out tomorrow! Alpha Instinct is the first of three books in this hot paranormal romance series from Penguin/NAL, so if you're a paranormal romance fan who loves sexy shifters, this is the series for you.

Katie's running a huge contest through her website, so please be sure to check out the details for chances to win books and other prizes, including a Kindle.

Fear has a scent. So does desire...

Ana Cordona has been a strong leader for the lupine shifters who survived after all the males and most of the females in her pack were mysteriously poisoned. As tough as she is, with no Alpha male, the pack is vulnerable to the devious shifter Taggart, who wants to claim both their ranch and Ana as his own. When Connor Armstrong comes back into her life, promising protection, it's almost enough to make Ana forget how he walked out on her before--and reluctantly accept his offer to mate.

The minute Connor sees Ana again, it reawakens a raw hunger. He must have her for his bondmate--his wolf cries out for it. But his human side knows he must proceed with caution because of their complicated past. If he is to truly have her body and soul, he must go beyond his burning desire and win back her heart. Whatever it takes, he is determined not to leave her side again.

But Taggart and his rival pack are not their only enemies. A human element in town is targeting shifters. Their plan not only threatens Ana and Connor's future, but the lives of the entire pack...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Home Safe and Sound

I'm back from the Gulf Coast! Had an ugly time getting down there, with three separate mechanical issues on our plane that required our captain to land halfway to Dallas to refuel because one of our fuel tanks wasn't working. Of course I was convinced our plane would kill us all. You can imagine my relief when we finally landed safely in Dallas/Ft. Worth. I missed my connecting flight to Mississippi by three hours, and by the time I finally got another one, I rolled in six hours late.

Had a great time visiting my pal Katie Reus, and her family. We toured ex-Confederate president Jefferson Davis's post Civil War summer home, Beauvoir, and ate some really great Southern BBQ.

We took some long walks past beautiful houses like these:
I even spent some time on a white sand beach enjoying the warm sunshine.
The trip back was smooth, though I came home to subfreezing temps and snow--something we don't get a lot of here in the greater Vancouver area. Snow's supposed to stay up in the mountains where it belongs!

I didn't get very much writing done while I was away, but who can blame me? Had a good time and my whole family was ecstatic to see me again. Sometimes it's good to go away for a bit on my own!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Mississippi Bound

Just found out this weekend that I'm going to Mississippi on Thursday! I'll be spending a few days down there in the comparatively warm temperatures visiting my pal, author Katie Reus, and I can't wait! Well, I mean I'm not looking forward to the flights, which is why my hubby didn't tell me until Saturday afternoon even though he booked the ticket for me in early December. Gives me less time to stress, was his reasoning.

Not sure what we'll wind up doing down there exactly, but I don't really care as long as we get to hang out together. At some point she'll probably wind up tying me to a chair someplace to make me bang out another chapter while I'm there. She's tough like that ;) Plus she keeps freaky weird hours and gets more done by 7 am than most people do in an entire business day. I have high hopes she'll let me sleep in until 7 every morning, but I'm not holding my breath on that one.

I don't know if I can interest her in doing some Civil War site tours or maybe a day trip into New Orleans, but for sure I'm going to insist we go eat at a BBQ place we ate at last time down there. My man is gonna be so jealous!

So everyone please send good thoughts and flap your arms for me on Thursday. Uh, and when I fly home on the 17th, too. I'd appreciate it!