Blog, Contests, Novel, reading, Romance

HELD AGAINST YOU pre-order giveaway!

Held Against You finalDo you like sexy, adventurous books? Do you like free stuff? Well, I’ve got a treat for you. Pre-order HELD AGAINST YOU in print or ebook before January 11, 2015 and enter the giveaway below to win a grab bag of PRIZES!

Accused of a horrible crime and on the run, Kat has been rejected by everyone she loves. She’s a fugitive from her past, flitting from town to town with nothing but the clothes on her back. Until she meets a man who literally stops her in her tracks.

This notorious bounty hunter, with his stunning good looks and powerful instincts, never fails to capture his prey. But there’s something about his newest mark that gets under his skin–and it’s not just the naked innocence he sees in her eyes. Behind his ice cold demeanor, he has his own secrets… and now his lively, vulnerable captive is about to crack him wide open.

As they drive across the country together, neither of them can deny the spark of attraction between them. Will their journey force these two passionate opposites together…or will their dangerous secrets be too much to bear?

PRE-ORDER LINKS:
Barnes & Noble     Amazon     BAM

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Beautiful Addictions, Blog, Novel, reading, Romance

First Solo Book Signing

The store

Two weeks ago, I was honored to hold my first solo book signing event for Beautiful Addictions! It took place at Barnes & Noble Citiplace in Baton Rouge, Louisiana (my hometown). During the days leading up to the signing, I was distracted by attending the Romance Writers of America convention in San Antonio, TX. Overwhelmed by the people, education, networking, and socializing during the conference, I had little time to worry about the signing. Somehow, worries crept into my subconscious and I dreamed that no one showed up except a mariachi band and two guys dressed as Thor. I blame you, San Antonio, and late night television.

On Sunday, June 27th at 3 PM. I sat at a small table near the front of the store to begin the signing. By this point, so many people had lined up, that they were blocking the store’s entrance. So, the lovely folks at B&N moved me to a larger area and set up some chairs. When I finally was situated to start signing, I was overwhelmed with the number of people lined up to have their books signed.

My view from the front of the line!
My view from the front of the line!

Courtney, from B&N, and my bestie, April, helped keep me signing and moving the line along. They were experts at keeping things organized.

A view from upstairs.
A view from upstairs.

So many people came, that we sold out of books. (Sorry to those who didn’t get one.) The day was amazing and I was completely overwhelmed by the folks who came to show their love and support. After an hour and a half of signing, the line had cleared. Courtney initiated a short Q&A session where we answered very serious questions, like “Is Tristan single?” (Thanks, Mom.) And then, we were done.

What a great way to celebrate a book that I’m so very proud of. When all was said and done, I signed over 90 books. Then, I did some hand stretches, exhaled, and walked next door for a sangria margarita. Thanks to everyone who made that day so special!

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Blog, Novel, reading, Romance

When words aren’t enough

krispy_wideweb__470x376,0This past week has been one of the craziest and most surreal experiences of my life. Having a book out in the world that people can read, love, hate, debate, praise, rip apart, and analyze feels like standing naked beneath florescent lighting holding a box of cheap wine and Krispy Kremes and asking people to judge me. It was terrifying and completely liberating.

There are certain things that happen when–and only when–you publish a book. These things are mostly positive and can make a normal person feel like the center of the universe. People that you haven’t seen or spoken to in years come out of the woodwork to wish you well. Complete strangers spend their hard earned money to acquire something you wrote. This alone is enough to make any person’s head spin. Your friends and family become your biggest cheerleaders, the best salespeople, and aren’t afraid to tell anyone about your book. Your grandparents think you have instantly reached the J. K. Rowling level of fame and your nepjkhews want to be cast in the movie version. In general, everyone you meet is super impressed with your accomplishment and genuinely happy for your success.

So, how do you thank all these people? How do you express your most sincere appreciation? Here’s the rotten, terrible, awful part. You can’t. It’s impossible. Even if I could afford a billboard in Times Square, or a commercial during the Super Bowl, I could not reach everyone who has brought joy, love, and support to my life.

All I have are my words. They are humble and not nearly enough. They fall short, but are completely necessary. So, here they are.

Thank you.

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Blog, Novel, reading, Romance

Book Birthday!

Happy Book Birthday to Me! Beautiful Addictions is finally here!

Beautiful Addictions

Beautiful Addictions is now available in stores. Let’s sit and marinate in that statement for a moment. As of today, you can go into a bookstore (and Target stores in July–SQUEE!) and find my book on the shelf. You can hold it and flip through pages and stick your nose between the pages to inhale that intoxicating scent of ink and paper. No? Is that just me? Having already gotten my hands on it, I can tell you that it’s a gorgeous book. The matte paper and lovely cover art make my designer side happy and all the words inside make my writer side happy.

For those of of you who have loved and supported me through this process, today is the best day to say thank you. Thanks for sharing Facebook posts and retweeting tweets. Thanks for entering giveaways, wearing Beautiful Addictions t-shirts, blogging, reviewing, pimping, and telling your friends about my book. I appreciate everything you give and know that I can never give enough back. Without a support system like I have, I doubt I’d be able to continue my publishing journey.

So, today we dance in the aisles of bookstores. We take selfies with Beautiful Addictions wearing big goofy grins. We hold 275 pages between our fingers and know that it took a village to get this done.

If you are still celebrating this evening, come on over to my VIRTUAL BOOK RELEASE PARTY on Facebook. It’s from 7-10 PM Eastern time. There will be lots of fun and some party favors too!

Blog, Learning

10 Notes for 20-somethings

In an effort to inspire my writing and connect with a younger crowd, I’ve been hanging out where they hang out. I’m the not-so-old-but-much-wiser lady eavesdropping in the corner, observing how they interact with each other, taking notes on words and phrases commonly used. I have to say, that after doing this, I am disappointed in what I’ve witnessed. Here are some things I think need improving. Dear, 20-somethings…

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  1. Ladies, act like a lady. You do not have to wear revealing clothes to be sexy. Teasing is an art form. Less is more.
  2. Please stop calling each other bitches, whores, sluts, and the N word. Even when you do this in a seemingly affectionate manner, it is giving others permission to call you those things too.
  3. While we’re on speech, let’s start to widen our vocabulary. Dropping the F bomb three times in one sentence doesn’t make you sound tough or cute. It makes you sound like you don’t know enough words in the English language to piece together a simple thought.Potty-Mouth
  4. Don’t tear each other down to feel better about yourself. No one reflects the kind of person you are, but you. Be someone your grandmother would be proud of.
  5. Be respectful of people in the service industry. While that employee is there to serve you, they are certainly not worth less than you. Speak to them like an equal and thank them sincerely.
  6. Don’t be afraid to say what you stand for or believe in. It’s okay, even if you are the only one of your friends who feels that way. Don’t be sucked in by group think. If something feels wrong, speak up.Quotation-Maggie-Kuhn-mind-Meetville-Quotes-175251
  7. Have compassion and be kind. Everyone you encounter has a life outside of what you see. You never know what demons they are fighting or what they have survived. Help and support people who may need it, encourage those who won’t ask for it.
  8. Put down your cell phones. There are humans in the room who want to see and talk to you. There are family and friends who only ever see the top of your head and the glow of the screen. Translate emoticons into actual feelings and expressions. Look up. Have conversations with people, without a keyboard. Watch this video if you don’t understand.
  9. Be a part of your community. Get to know your neighbors. Don’t litter. Volunteer. If you want something done, if you want change, be proactive. Don’t sit idly by and complain about how things are. Get out and do something about them. Bring awareness to those who need it. Educate yourself on issues you feel are important before getting into heated debates. Listen to others’ opinions, but always form your own. Don’t be a sheep blindly following the herd. Ask questions and always be open to learning.
  10. Listen to your elders. We know stuff you don’t. But, don’t call me an elder or I’ll beat you with my cane.

I’m not saying that an entire generation is guilty of one or all of these things. I’m not saying that I’m perfect and all-knowing. What I am saying, is that there needs to be a bigger effort at self-awareness amongst 20-somethings. You are at a point in your life where you are making education or career decisions and life-long friends. Do not take these things lightly or too seriously. Discover your true self and revel in it.

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