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Archive for October, 2012

Beyond The Page & Giveaway: Robin Covington chats with The Boys

Oct 22

Guess whose here to chat about their love lives and their life-long friendships? Two of The Boys from “The Boys Are Back In Town” series by Robin Covington. 😀

Yup, those four awesome rascals we first met in “A Night of Southern Comfort” (ANOC on Twitter) back in June.

If you haven’t read this book yet, make sure to pick up a copy over at Amazon or your preferred bookstore. Trust me, ANOC is gooood. 😀

OK, on to Robin’s fun convo with Jackson ‘Jack’ Cantrell from ANOC and Lucky Landon from book 2 in the series, “A Southern Temptation“, which comes out from Entangled Publishing in Spring 2013.

Enjoy and be sure to POST A COMMENT then ENTER a Rafflecopter giveaway here for a chance to WIN your very own eBook of “A Night of Southern Comfort”.

Jack, Lucky and Peanut Butter Pie

(Robin) I walk into the Southern Comfort Diner in Elliott, VA and scan the bustling restaurant for the two guys I’m here to meet.  People turn and look at me standing in the doorway. Some smile and others nod before returning to their conversations, none of the then unfriendly and all curious. They know who I am—the chick hanging around to write books about four of their favorite sons—and I appreciate their welcome into this close-knit place.

I see my targets in their usual booth along the front window and catch the eye of Lucky Landon. He waves me over, his grin taking up his whole face.  He’s handsome, boyish and open, but I know what he’s seen and what he’s done and I notice the shadows flickering in his baby blues.

I weave through the lunch crowd, easing into the booth opposite the two men.  Jackson Cantrell, dark and cautious, nods and pours a cup of coffee for me. Lucky slides a plate over towards me and I know in glance what it is: Dolly’s famous Peanut Butter pie. I dig in and one bite almost makes me forget why I’m here.

Lucky: Good huh?

Robin: Oh. My. God.

Jack: I’ll tell my mom you like it.

Robin: Please do. (I reluctantly push away the pie. It will have to wait. These two have a shelf life of about 20 minutes before they bolt.) Thanks for talking to me today, guys.

Lucky: No problem. I’ve always got time to talk to a beautiful woman.

Robin: Uh huh. Save it Landon, I’m married.

Jack: Kayla likes you.  She told me to do it.

Lucky: She told you not to be an asshole.

Jack: She did not. Lucky—

Robin: Okay, okay.  Geez. I’ve already lost control of the interview.

Jack: (glares at Lucky) We’ll behave.

Lucky: Sure we will. (He turns his grin on me) So, what do you want to know?

Robin: Well, some of my friends had a few questions. I figured I’d start with those. What was the defining moment that made you both such tight friends?

Jack: We’re family. Cousins. Our mothers are sisters and we grew up together, just like brothers.

Lucky: Yeah, I can’t remember a time when Jack wasn’t around and watching my back.

Jack: When I got shot, I woke up and Lucky was there. He’d arranged for leave from the Marines and stayed with me until they sent me home.  I think that says it all.

Lucky: You would have done the same for me.

They exchange a look. Brothers-in-arms. I get it.

Robin: You were both Marines. Did you ever serve together?

Jack: We were in boot together and then once at the same base.

Lucky: But, we weren’t in the same unit.

Jack: I was Recon and Lucky…

Lucky: I was in a different unit. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

Robin: Okay. So, you’re such great friends…have you ever fought over a woman?

Lucky: Hell, yeah. Several.  Jack here can’t handle it that the women love me more.

Jack: Whatever. All I know is that Lauren Miller kissed me behind the bleachers and you’ve had your panties in a twist ever since.

Lucky: Not true.  I distinctly remember her panties being quite easy to get off.

Robin: Alright, panties twisted or not, what are you looking for in a woman?

Jack: I found her. Kayla is smart, sexy, way too classy for me. I don’t remember what I wanted before but she’s better.

Robin: Spoken like a happy newlywed. So, what about you Lucky? Dream woman?

Lucky: (He exchanges a glance with Jack. I let it go for now) Oh, my dream woman?  Haven’t met her yet—

Jack: *coughs*

Robin: Jack, do you have something to say?

Jack: Umm…no?

Lucky: He’s got nothing.  My dream woman is to be determined.  I’ll know her when I see her.

Robin: What was that look about?  Looks like maybe you found her already. Spill.

Lucky: Nothing to spill…I mean…there’s a girl…a woman…we’ve hooked up a few times but it isn’t…it can’t…(he looks at Jack)…Help.

Jack: You want me to stop you the next time you babble?

Lucky: Yep. (he turns to me and holds his hands out, begging) Can we please pick another question?

Robin: Okay, what is your favorite sexual position?

Jack: Whoa!

Lucky: Can we go back to the last question?

Robin: Nope.

Jack: I plead the fifth on the grounds that my wife will kill me if I go around discussing our sex life.

Robin: You read my book, right? You two had lots

of sex, so people know…

Jack: And, I’d like to keep having lots of sex.  No comment.

Robin: Okay, Lucky.  America wants to know. Favorite sexual position.

Lucky: Shit. Okay, I like them all. Hot women, naked, willing, missionary, doggie—what’s not to like? And if you add a little role-playing and costumes—

Robin: What?!

Jack: *groans* Seriously, buddy. Just. Shut. Up.

Lucky:  What you and Kayla never dress up?

Jack:  I pled the fifth already and no. No.  Not my thing.

Lucky:  I’m not talking clowns or anything but you know certain ones…connected to a special memory or something…

Jack: Please stop. I don’t want to know this much about you. (he looks at me) You did this. You wrote him like this. It’s your fault.

Robin: Guilty as charged. Okay, another question from my friends—which one of you is better looking?

Jack: Me.

Lucky: Jack.

Robin:  Wow. You agree?

Lucky: Jack’s just so pretty. ( He reaches out to try to ruffle Jack’s hair with his fingers.)

Jack: Get off me.

Robin: Okay, last question.  If you were stranded on an island what three things would you take with you?

Jack: Seriously?

Lucky: *whispers* Remember, we aren’t going to be assholes.

Jack: Fine, you go first.

Lucky: Three things. The photo of my mom, dad, me and my brother at Promised Land Farm. My vintage porn magazine collection.

Jack: What?

Lucky: Shut up, this is my island.  What would you take?

Jack: Every Tom Clancy novel ever written. My mom’s pie and Kayla.

Lucky: She didn’t say you could take someone with you.

Robin: It’s okay.  You still have one left—who would you take to the island?

Lucky: Ummm…

Robin: The woman you were talking about earlier?

Lucky: Ummm…(he looks at Jack:…Help.

Jack:  You’re on your own on this one.

Lucky:  That woman…let’s just say I’d love to be stranded on an island with her but that’s not gonna happen.

Robin: We’ll see about that. Thanks guys.  I loved talking to you today.

Jack: Are we free?  I mean, free to go?

Lucky:  I guess I’ll be seeing you.  My book’s next right?

Robin:  Yep. We’ll be seeing lots of each other.

Lucky: Be gentle.

Robin: Always.

Remember to POST A COMMENT then ENTER a Rafflecopter giveaway here for a chance to WIN your very own eBook of “A Night of Southern Comfort”.

Wonderful post: The Man Behind the Curtain

Oct 8

The Man Behind the Curtain.

Click on the link above to read Maisey Yates’ post on the key role her husband Haven Yates plays in her ability to juggle family, marriage and being a Harlequin Presents/Mills&Boon author. 😀

Beyond The Page & Giveaway: Nikki Logan

Oct 3

Today’s it’s my pleasure to welcome Australia’s very own Nikki Logan to Beyond The Page, here on Caribbean Accent Book Reviews (CABR), as part of her “Wild Encounterblog tour.

There’s a Giveaway involved – an eBook of “Wild Encounter”, so Post a Comment then follow the instructions in the Rafflecoptera Rafflecopter giveaway

CABR: Welcome to CABR Nikki.

NL: Thank you, I’m very excited to be here and to discover you.

CABR: Thanks! 🙂

Wild Encounter” is your first romantic suspense novel, right? Why’d you decide to ‘branch out’ from category romance? Were you compelled to by Clare and Simon? 

NL: Actually, “Wild Encounter” was the first book I wrote, so it pre-dated my romance with contemporary category, but it was never a conscious decision to write a ‘rom sus’ (romantic suspense). I just wrote the story I wanted to read and the characters took me, and the story, in the direction they wanted to go. I had a very strong dream which led to the ‘escape’ scene in the book and getting that down on the page really set the tone. But the moment I started writing my hero (with whom the heroine has a very Stockholm-y thing happening) the rest all fell into place and I realised it was always going to be a ‘rom sus’.

Wild Encounter” took a backseat while I started getting full-on into contemporary category romance, so it was only this year when I first heard about (Entangled Publishing‘s new line) Dead Sexy, that I thought….oh, that’s a good fit for Clare and Simon. But of course Entangled is still category length so this story still offers the pacier, tighter journey of a category romance (albeit at the longer end of the range).

CABR: Did you seek out Entangled Publishing’s Dead Sexy line for WE or did they contact you? Why?

NL: I was intrigued by Entangled’s business model and I thought Dead Sexy just sounded…well, dead sexy! I could ‘see’ my cover with a Dead Sexy logo on it and it felt very right so I subbed it to Nina Bruhns assuming it would be months before I heard back but Nina got back in touch virtually straight away very excited and clearly getting the story. Not long after that she was back in touch with an offer. I was very excited to have my story — and my name — connected with such a cool, emerging line.

CABR: That’s fantastic Nikki 😀  Have you been surprised by any fan reactions to WE, since it’s a bit of a departure from your previous 15 books?

NL: You know what… it’s really not THAT much of a departure. All my stories have wildlife or nature themes through them and are strong, character-led stories with lots of drama. Sure, “Wild Encounter” externalises the drama but it’s still there. There’s no doubt there’s more blood and more on-page sex than my usual but I would hope that, essentially, the stories are crafted much the same.

So far all the direct reader feedback I’ve had has been positive, people who’ve enjoyed the departure. I’d like to think that what makes my stories engaging would translate across genres (but maybe that’s just me being optimistic about getting to play with future genres 😀

CABR: I say think positive. 🙂  Did you get to choose the book cover for “Wild Encounter” or have significant input?

NL: Yes!! I’m a very visual writer and waaaaay back when I was first trying to get my head around this story I found an image of a woman with amazing green eyes staring out past a man’s hand clamped over her mouth and I stuck it on the wall and used it to help me conceptualise this story — like a visual log line. So when the opportunity came to make suggestions for the cover of Wild Encounter I sent Entangled’s art department the image and suggested a kind of ‘watermark’ of wild dogs somewhere in there too. The final cover is so amazingly close to how I imagined it, and I love the green Dead Sexy branding—hope I get to keep those for my future nature-based stories.

CABR: Now that you’ve gotten the first one out of the way, so to speak, are you planning to write more romantic suspense? Perhaps a series?

NL: I hope so! If there is a good reader response to this story I’d like to write Mac’s story next, probably set in Australia. There are quite a few minor characters in “Wild Encounter” and so lots of scope for a series. And no shortage of great wildlife settings.

CABR: Would you say “How to Get Over Your Ex” is a category romance? When can we get our hands, or Kindles, on a copy?

NL: Very definitely category. This title will be one of the debut titles for the new Harlequin line, KISS, which launches in North America in time for Valentine’s Day, 2013. It’s set in London and has no on-page sex in it and so is nowhere near as wild (in all ways) as “Wild Encounter”. Look for it late January.

CABR: Those are a couple of dates to keep in mind.  What do you consider the pros and cons of writing?

NL: Pros: Getting to work-from-home, with my dogs at my feet, in my PJs if I want. Being my own time manager, getting positive reader feedback or four/five-star reviews. Getting to see direct benefit from my own work ethic.

Cons: Getting a bit ‘shut in’ and missing daily human contact; people thinking that it’s okay to steal your work and give it away to others (or worse, selling the work they’ve stolen); being confronted by online people who build themselves up by tearing others down; working seven days a week (I was promised a leisurely writer’s lifestyle goshdarnit!).

CABR: Being able to work at home, with your dogs as company, sounds like Heaven. I totally agree with you about how awful, and illegal, it is to share/sell eBooks without consent.  On a happier note, what’s the funniest fan interaction you’ve had?

NL: A friend popped round to see her mother and saw one of my books on her mother’s bedside table and her mother said ‘I’ve discovered this great new writer…’ My friend took great delight in saying ‘you know her, mum’ but she didn’t believe it until she came round next time with a book signed and personalised by me.

Also this one time in an elevator at a writers’ conference in New York, a lovely woman glanced at my nametag and said ‘I think I know you…’ and we spent the entire 30 floor ascent (although it was very fast) trying to work out whether she’d met me somewhere. Finally she stepped out of the elevator waving and saying ‘It’ll come to me’, and my mother (who was travelling with me in NY) looked at me once we were alone and said ‘You’re an idiot’. A little lightbulb came on over my head and I said ‘oh, right! I’m an author.’

CABR: LOL. That elevator encounter is too funny.  Have you ever been awestruck upon meeting any particular author/s at a convention?

NL: I worked in the film and TV industry for many years so I’m really not all that much of a gusher (from necessity). But there’s this kind of rockstar allure that some writers have (which I don’t think has anything to do with stature) and, for me, Deanna Raybourn is such a writer. I met her at the same writers’ convention and she was just so poised and gracious and beautiful, she had that whole presence thing going on. I officially gushed. And possibly stalked.

CABR: I’m sure you didn’t stalk her…much. 😉  If you could be someone else for a day, from any time in history, who would you be and why?

NL: I would love to experience Beethoven’s music the way he must have toward the end. To feel it battering my face and be able to ‘hear’ it that way. Awesome.

CABR: Love Beethoven!  Which character from fiction, yours or another author’s, would you like to spend time with and why?

NL: I think if I could only pick one then I’d have to go with Jane Eyre, primarily because by spending time with her then I’d also get to spend it with Mr Rochester (a twofer!) Much as I love the witty, confident Elizabeth Bennett-esque heroines of regency, I’ve always had a particularly soft spot for the unsung, mousey, tolerant but shy heroines who win love gently and against the odds. I love a cinderella story.

CABR: Me too 🙂   Thanks again Nikki for dropping by CABR on your “Wild Encounterblog tour.

NL: Thank you so much for having me by. I hope you all really enjoy Clare, Simon and the wild dogs.

Giveaway reminder – an eBook of “Wild Encounter”. Post a Comment then follow the instructions in the Rafflecoptera Rafflecopter giveaway

Filed Under: Contemporary, Giveaway, Menu

Beyond The Page: Elisabeth Roseland

Oct 2

Everyone, it’s time to get to know a new author – Elisabeth Roseland. This Chicago native is the one responsible for creating the world of Ebony Nights; a male escort service based in the Windy City.

Today on Beyond The Page you’re not only getting to learn more about Elisabeth and Ebony Nights, you’re also getting a chance to WIN an eBook version of the novella “Advertising for Love“, book one in the series.

Aren’t GIVEAWAYS fun? 🙂 And yes, this IS open to international readers of my blog! 😀

Simply (1) Post a Comment then (2) Enter the RAFFLECOPTER a Rafflecopter giveaway

CABR: Welcome to Beyond The Page Elisabeth 🙂

“Advertising for Love” is book 1 in the Ebony Nights series. What’s it been like writing about an all-male escort service and how they guys balance work and play?

ER: Well, for the escorts, work is play. 😉 It’s been an awesome ride coming up with these characters and exploring their motivations for why they chose the profession they did. I’m also equally interested in the female clients and the circumstances that led them to hiring an escort. People have bills to pay. Others don’t have time to date. Some find themselves out of work and out of other options. Others don’t want to risk an emotional relationship and just want sex. It’s all so deliciously messy and complicated.

CABR: Sounds like a fun story to write. 🙂 When did you sign your book deal with Samhain and how has your life changed since then?

ER: I got the email in March (2012) that Samhain was interested in the first book and wanted to hear more about the series, and I’ve been on cloud nine since then. There have been two big changes for me. First, writing has moved from being a hobby to a career, which means that I now have two (gulp!) And second, with two careers, I’m now insanely busy. The balance has been challenging but so much fun. I wouldn’t have it any other way!

CABR: Who would? 🙂 Does Chicago figure in your books or are they set somewhere else? Why?

ER: Chicago is the setting for the Ebony Nights series. I chose Chicago not just because I live here and it’s the best city in the world (*grin*) but also because the size and diversity afford the characters a variety of options.

For example, in Advertising, the city makes the characters’ jobs possible. Aisha can work in a high-powered career as an ad executive with regional and national connections. Greg can be a well-paid escort with a busy schedule and plenty of clients. The large scope of the city also allows for a variety of activities. Greg can take Aisha to a down-home diner in an impoverished neighborhood one day and meet a client on a yacht the next.

Chicago continues to play a key role in the second book, In Production (March 2013). Two of the main characters are television producers for rival stations. I never name the stations, but if you’ve visited the city, you’ll know exactly which ones I’m talking about based on their descriptions.

Like a lot of Chicagoans who are writers, I’m inspired by the city. The diverse people, the food, the architecture, the dirty politics, the brutal winters—all of it gets into your psyche and muscles its way onto the page.

CABR: Looking forward to seeing Chicago through your characters’ eyes. How excited are you that “Advertising for Love” is now available for pre-order at Samhain and Amazon?

ER: Eh. *shrugs* No big deal.

OH MY GOODNESS ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! I am so excited I could just DIE! But I’m trying to control myself because if I did die, then I couldn’t continue to work on the series.

CABR: LOL. Do you get to choose the book covers for the Ebony Nights series?

ER: *Looks at cover* *Wipes drool off face*

I’m sorry, what? Did you ask me a question? Oh, the cover. Yeah.

I don’t get to choose the covers, but I do get to fill out a cover art request form detailing what I would like to see. I can give my input on everything—the main characters’ physical appearance, their body language, the Ebony Nights logo, how the city is represented, etc. The form then goes to the cover artist who turns my words into an image. If there are things about the cover I don’t like, I can tell my editor who then relays it back to the artist and revisions are made. With the cover for “Advertising for Love”, however, Angela Waters (the cover artist) hit it out of the park on the first try. My editor sent me the cover and my jaw hit the floor. It is sexy and eye-catching and perfectly illustrates what the book is about.

CABR: I totally agree 😀   Tell us about the series – book titles order, publication dates.

ER: “Advertising for Love” will be released on December 11th. “In Production” is due on March 19, 2013. I’m still waiting for the contract for the third book, “Corporate Merger”, but it will most likely be slated for June/July. I’ve also started working on book number four, so look for that some time before the year is out.

CABR: Busy lady! Good news for fans of “Ebony Nights” 🙂  What’s next for you? “In Production” right? Based on what I’ve read, is this a m/m book with a female escort as the third?

ER: Actually, no. There are two men in “In Production”, and they both get busy! But not with each other.  Marie Hutchinson and Vince Contadino are television producers at rival stations. Vince has got it bad for Marie, but she’s too busy to give him the time of day. She has no time for relationships, at least that’s what she tells herself.

Instead, she prefers to satisfy her sexual cravings by hiring escorts from Ebony Nights, and Brian Taylor is her new favorite. The book explores how past wounds can impact the present, and how present relationships can impact the future. Oh, and how a black guy with a sexual bag of tricks and an Italian with a voracious appetite can rock a girl’s world.

Lucky, lucky Marie.

CABR: Indeed 😉  What do you consider the pros and cons of writing? How tough has it been to juggle writing with your day job?

ER: Sometimes I feel like I’m doing juggling one-handed, blindfolded, while standing on one foot and singing the National Anthem. But there are so many pros, the biggest one being that this is a creative outlet that is really fulfilling to me. I have so much fun while writing, even when I’m working on something difficult (like addressing my editor’s comments). You know that something is feeding your soul when you grin like a fool even through the tough times.

The cons are that I’m always exhausted, and I now have caffeine running through my veins instead of blood.

CABR: Feeding the soul is always important 🙂 What’s the funniest fan interaction you’ve had?

ER: Well, since my book isn’t out yet, I have no fans. Wait, I take that back. My husband is a fan, but he doesn’t count. I did have a great conversation with one of my close friends, however. When I told her the premise of my book, she blushed and whispered, “A male escort agency? That’s always been a fantasy of mine.” I squealed, “Mine, too!” and we had a good laugh about it.

CABR: LOL. Were you awestruck upon meeting any particular author/s at a convention?

ER: I’ve only been to one convention so far, the Romantic Times Convention last April, but my favorite panel was the erotic romance/erotica panel (obviously). I sat in the front row grinning like a fool. Kayla Perrin and Janet Miller/Cricket Starr were there, but I was really excited to hear Eden Bradley/Eve Berlin speak. My editor was also in the audience and my “fell out of my chair” moment was when she prefaced her question by stating that she is Eden’s editor at Samhain! I felt like I was just one degree away from a connection with such an amazing writer. I really geeked out over that.

CABR: Wow. So cool! If you could be someone else for a day, from any time in history, who would you be and why?

ER: Ok, so this answer is super nerdy, but I would be Aphra Behn (1640-1689). She is considered to be the first female professional English playwright and is quoted as saying, “Forced to write for bread and not ashamed to own it.”

She did things that “respectable” English ladies would never do: made her own money (shocking!), worked in the morally depraved theater (scandalous!), and wrote plays that were just as funny and as dirty as her male counterparts (the horror!)

She was also a spy for King Charles II, spent time in debtors’ prison, and most likely lied about being a widow so people would get off her back for never having married. So yeah, I totally would love to be her.

CABR: I did not know that. Will be looking up Aphra Behn on the internet 🙂  Which character from fiction, yours or another author’s, would you like to spend time with and why?

ER: Greg, for obvious reasons. (Shh! Don’t tell my husband.)

CABR: Of course not! 😉

Thanks again Elisabeth for taking the time to drop by CABR.

Remember, to WIN an eBook copy of “Advertising for Love”, (1) Post a Comment then (2) Enter the RAFFLECOPTER a Rafflecopter giveaway

Filed Under: Beyond The Page
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