Hey peeps, hope you’re all super well! Is anyone else excited by the fact CHRISTMAS IS NEXT WEEK??? No? Just me? Oh wells 😉
I do love the Christmas. It’s one of my favourite times of year and I just love all the tinsel and twinkles and the good will towards all humans (and other lifeforms).
Christmas also means lots and lots of celebrating. To that end, The Romance Studio are holding a week-long party where heaps and heaps of authors are chatting about their books and fun things and there are giveaways! Lots and lots of giveaways!
One of these giveaways is mine. That’s right, trundle on over to The Romance Reviews Christmas Party for your chance to win some stuff…oh, and read tids and bits about my books. Should probably mention that too, huh?
And while I have your ear, I thought I’d let you know to keep an eye out for a series of posts I’ll be doing after Christmas. As some of you may know, I LOVE cooking and every year I make some goodies for friends and family. I’ll be detailing my efforts for your culinary enjoyment once the hustle and bustle of Christmas settles down. So make sure you check back!
Alrighty, hope you all are having glorious days. Chat soon.
I’m taking my head out of the sand for a bit to chat about a fabulous giveaway! My good friend and amazing author bud, Jessica Subject, is hosting a HUGE book giveaway over on her blog. A bunch of authors, including myself, have donated books for one lucky person to win. Check out the goodies:
Whew, we’re in March already – how did that happen?? Here in Radelaide, we’re halfway through the Fringe, the roar of the Clipsal 500 echoes through our streets, and the Adelaide Festival has just begun. Busy, busy times.
In the blogospheres, plenty is also afoot. The Romance Readers are celebrating their second anniversary with an awesome party! I’m lucky enough to be a part of the celebrations and I hope you’ll join us. There are lots of fantastic prizes on offer, as well as lots of games and fun times.
Peeps, please welcome back Jessica Subject to the blog! Jessica and I are great mates, and I’m so thrilled to feature her newest release, ACCIDENTAL ROMANCE, on the blog. Take it away, Jessica!
In love with the farmhand?
Thank you so much, Cassandra, for having me back as a guest on your blog! It’s always a pleasure to be here.
Hello everyone! In my latest release, ACCIDENTAL ROMANCE, the main character finds out that the boy she grew up with, and worked beside for years, has feelings for her. And while she never saw him as more than a friend, she must depend on him to help her after her accident, an accident that left her with only one hand. Through her struggles, she must decide whether she, too, cares for him as more than a friend.
This story is very similar to the friends-to-lovers trope. Only the relationship between Leanne and Jake is a little more complicated than just friendship. Here’s an excerpt from the beginning of the story:
Leanne ducked, trying to avoid the apple flying toward her. With its speed, it stirred her hair, but she avoided contact. Instead, the fruit smashed against the wall then fell to the floor, a mess of brown pulp and skin. She stood and glared at the source of the flying object. “Jake, you’re such an ass.”
He grinned at her from across the milking parlor, tossing into the air another rotten apple he must have grabbed when he put the cows out to pasture. “You’d better be nice to me, LA, if you want me to do your chores tonight.”
With a huff, she rolled her eyes. “Whatever. I wasn’t the one who threw fruit at your head.” She cursed him several times a day for such pranks. Often he’d tossed her in the manure pile or turned the pressure hoses on her. He lived with his family down the road, and if their parents weren’t such good friends, she would have told her father to fire Jake years ago.
What do you have planned for tonight anyway?” He sauntered toward her, gripping the other apple so hard, she expected pulp to squeeze between his fingers. “Going out with your boyfriend?”
She cringed, hating how he mocked her with the word. “Jealous, much?”
Taking a step back, he scowled. “You wish. Why should I care who you date? You’re a grown woman.”
I’m glad you noticed.” She reached down for a piece of straw and poked him in the chest with it. “So, why is it such a problem?”
He shrugged his shoulders, his expression suddenly indifferent. “I think you can do better.”
She poked him again. “What, like you?”
He leaned closer, his face only an inch from hers. His musky scent overpowered the sweet stench of the barn and filled her senses. If he hadn’t been a constant pain in her ass, she might have thought he was going to kiss her.
“In your dreams.”
Should have known. She chuckled and tapped his cheek a couple times with her palm. “I can honestly say you have never been in any of my dreams. Not even my nightmares. And if you must know, I’m going out with my friends from college.” She spun around and called over her shoulder. “Tomorrow I’ll be with Scott.” She headed out of the barn. A field of wheat waited for her, and she had to harvest it before she went out.
At twenty-two, Leanne Declan has graduated from college and hopes to take over the family farm until a tragic accident changes her life forever. Unable to do the simplest everyday chores, she must depend on her family and friends as she learns to face life’s challenges. But when her fears threaten to destroy her future, can an unexpected love be strong enough to help her dreams come true?
For your chance to WINACCIDENTAL ROMANCE swag, leave a comment telling me whether you’ve ever had a crush on a friend or co-worker. Winner will be notified by email on January 31, 2013. Good luck!
Jessica Subject started writing to encourage her daughter to read. Now she writes to keep herself grounded. Although she reads many genres, she enjoys writing Science Fiction Romance the most and believes everyone in the universe deserves a happily ever after. She lives Southwestern Ontario, Canada with her husband and two kids and loves to hear from her readers.
===================================================================== # The small print: Comment before midnight on 31 January 2012 (Australian Central Daylight Time) to be entered to win Accidental Romance swag. Winner will be selected by Jessica E Subject with winner’s name posted on this blog within three days of the close of the giveaway. Jessica will also contact the winner by e-mail; the winner will be required to reply with their postal address so Jessica can send the prize to them.
Only one entry per ISP address. Entrants must be over 18 years of age. By entering, you agree Jessica and Cassandra can use your name when announcing the winner if you should win. If potential prize winner forfeits or does not claim the prize, prize will be re-awarded, in Sponsor’s sole discretion. All prizes will be awarded. International entries are welcome. No purchase necessary to enter. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Void where prohibited by law.
Hope you all had a smashing weekend. Today, we have special guest Sabrina Sol on the blog, chatting to you all about dreams turned reality. What a great subject! Take it away, Sabrina.
Turning dreams into reality
Sabrina Sol: Thanks Cassandra for inviting me here today!
I’m so excited to talk about my upcoming release with Decadent Publishing. It’s called REUNITED and it’s my first published book.
REUNITED is basically about taking a chance in order to make a dream come true. So it’s fitting then that it’s my first.
I’ve always wanted to write a book. Well, specifically, I’ve always wanted to write a bestselling book. Ha!
I remember being pretty much the only kid in class to be excited when the teacher made us write a story using our spelling or vocabulary words for the week. My love for writing continued through high school and college and eventually I even made a living doing it. But while being a newspaper reporter allowed me to write every day, I wasn’t writing MY stories. Then circumstances changed and I moved into public relations. Again, I wrote pretty much every day, but there was a limit on how creative I could be with press releases.
It wasn’t until about two years ago that I decided to finally listen to the voices in my head. I announced to my husband that I was going to write a book and proceeded to start my first novel. Thousands of words later, it’s still not finished. But along the way, I managed to also write REUNITED.
It’s hard to explain the feelings overwhelming me as my release day gets closer. Satisfaction? Pride? Pure joy?
Probably all of the above. After all, how many chances do you get in a lifetime to make a dream come true?
For Magdelena Cruz, the main character in REUNITED, the answer is two. The first time didn’t work out, so she engineers a second chance.
What would you do if you had the chance to sleep with your unrequited high school crush?
If you’re former geek Magdelena Cruz, you’d do him in a heartbeat. But you’d lie about your true identity first and hope your new sexy persona is enough to create a night neither of you will forget.
Workaholic assistant DA Will Hudson doesn’t have time for a love life. Expecting to scratch an itch with a willing stranger, he signs up for Madame Evangeline’s 1Night Stand experience. He has no idea that his date is no stranger.
A reunion between two classmates will be hotter than the scorching Las Vegas sun. But will the heat be enough to spark something deeper, or will they both end up getting burned by Magdelena’s charade?
Standing in front of the door to the suite, she let the magnitude of the moment sink in. All logic and practicality fled. She’d left both back at home with her pocket protector and sensible shoes. The situation called for her to be impulsive, daring and confident.
If you are, then he will finally be yours….
She smoothed her dress, adjusted her bra, and blew into her hand for a breath check. Satisfied, she slid her key card into the slot and pushed the door open.
A blaring TV welcomed her. Not that she expected a violin serenade, but she hadn’t planned on competing with a basketball game for her date’s attention. She frowned.
“Pass the ball, you idiot!” Will shouted.
Tingling from head to toe at the sound of his voice, she released a slow breath.
It’s now or never, Magdelena.
“Hello?” she called.
The TV turned off instantly. A second later, he walked into her view.
Her throat tightened.
The years had been good to him. No, they’d been great to him. Although she’d seen pictures on the alumni website, they didn’t do him justice. Every visible inch of his body appeared chiseled from stone. A dark gray shirt and black slacks perfectly accentuated every muscle. He wore his dark hair shorter than she’d seen in the photos, but his blue eyes were more piercing than ever. He looked her over, settling on her cleavage and her nipples that had come to attention the minute she saw him. Then he raised his eyes to meet hers.
“Hello, Elena.” His deep voice lit her soul on fire.
He doesn’t recognize me. This plan might work after all.
And now a giveaway#! Do you have a dream that recently came true? Or what fantasy are you trying to turn into a reality? Comment below and be entered into a drawing for a free copy of REUNITED. Don’t forget to include your e-mail address.
Well, that’s it for me today. Thank you again Cassandra. Besos!
CD: No probs at all, Sabrina, it was a pleasure to have you! What a great giveaway, am I right, peeps? Make sure you comment and enter!
Sabrina Sol is the chica who loves love. She writes spicy romance stories featuring strong Latina heroines in search of love, success and happiness. She lives in Southern California with her husband, three kids and two Beagles. And she’s part of a large, extended Mexican family which may—or may not—be the source of inspiration for some of her characters. Visit her at sabrinasol.com or theromancechica.com. Or follow her on Twitter @theromancechica.
===================================================================== # The small print: Comment before midnight on 03 December 2012 (Australian Central Daylight Time) to be entered to win a copy of REUNITED by Sabrina Sol. Winner will be selected via random.org, with winner’s name posted in the comments of this post by 05 December 2012. Sabrina will also contact the winner by e-mail; the winner will be required to reply with their postal address so Sabrina can send the prize to them.
Only one entry per ISP address. Entrants must be over 18 years of age. By entering, you agree Sabrina and Cassandra can use your name when announcing the winner if you should win. If potential prize winner forfeits or does not claim the prize, prize will be re-awarded, in Sponsor’s sole discretion. All prizes will be awarded. International entries are welcome. No purchase necessary to enter. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Void where prohibited by law.
Peeps, a special treat today. Please join me in welcoming back to the blog my fellow Decadent author and good buddy, Jessica E Subject!
I write what I read, and read what I write
Thank you so much for having me on your blog today, Cassandra! It’s a pleasure to be back. 😀
In the publishing industry, I often hear the advice, to NOT read anything in the genre you write. Why? Because it supposedly can change the author’s voice in the story as they write their own. Well, that’s one piece of advice I don’t follow. I enjoy romance stories, especially science fiction, contemporary, erotica, and more. I enjoy other genres as well, but I tend to read more romance than anything.
Why do I not follow this advice? Well, when I’m reading young adult, my characters may sound too immature for some readers. If I’m reading a thriller, it’s kind of hard to write sexy for one character when I’m worried about the life of another. Maybe this is because I get very involved in the stories I’m reading. Recently, I read a book that I had to put down because I was too involved. The story was fabulous, but everything that happened to the character left me depressed. But I digress.
By reading stories in the genre I write, I learn from them, what I like and what I don’t. But my voice doesn’t change. I still write like myself, trying to improve my skills along the way. That’s what it’s all about.
So, I follow advice from other authors, in that I should read as much as I can, ESPECIALLY stories in my own genre.
And before writing my recent release, CRASH LANDING, I read a lot of erotica.
Here’s an excerpt from the beginning of the story:
Cael gripped the cushioned arms of the captain’s chair as his ship tumbled bow over stern. The console flashed a blinding red in front of him. Piercing alarms drilled into his mind and he lost focus. The seconds raced by as he plummeted toward Earth. He’d fucked up this mission of peace. Contact with his home planet had ended months ago. No one from Narien could save him now. His death was imminent.
The water below wouldn’t soften his landing. At its current speed, his ship would disintegrate on splashdown. The planet’s gravity pulled him down faster.
He coughed; the acrid scent of fried electronics stung his nose and the back of his throat. Please let my death be quick.
A rattling to the left caught his attention above all other noise. The handle on the cabin door shook. Freedom. It wasn’t his time to die, if he could get out.
The altimeter on the dashboard read six thousand meters, high enough to jump and land safely with his chute. Only to land in frigid water and die of exhaustion or hypothermia from treading without any hope of a rescue.
“Shit.” But he’d die if he stayed. He had to take the chance. Yanking off his safety harness, he pulled himself to standing and strained to reach the recess where his pack hung. Stretching up, he fingered the cloth strap. Not close enough to grab hold of it.
The ship jolted and flung him to the stern. He weaved his arm through the straps of the pack on his way past, dislodging it from the hook. Yes.
His triumph was short-lived as he flew starboard, smashing his shoulder against the wall. He groaned when an electrifying spasm shot down his arm to the tips of his fingers. The ship lurched again, and he tumbled back toward the console. He grabbed the door, his feet dangling in mid air. If he didn’t get out now, he’d forfeit any chance to survive.
The ship righted again. He planted his feet against the bottom of the door and twisted the crank. The latch snapped open, filling him with a sense of hope. Careful to keep at least one hand on the handle at all times, he slung the pack over his shoulders.
All set. Time to jump. Pushing off the floor, he slammed his uninjured shoulder against the door. It blew open and tore away from its hinges, lost to the sky.
Cael teetered on the edge before plunging out of his failing ship. Wind whipped all around him as he twisted to catch his bearing during freefall.
Glancing down, he spied crystal blue lake, much closer than he’d expected. Too close.
He jerked the cord on his chute–several hundred feet lower than he should have. At least. His feet skimmed the cold waves just as his chute caught the current and heaved him back into the air.
The ship splashed into the water beside him, disintegrating into millions of pieces. He raised his hands in front of his face as shrapnel flew at him. Tiny shards sliced into his arms and legs, but the extreme heat from the cloud of steam billowing up at him stung the most.
From the moment his toes touched down in the once frigid water, his skin sizzled. He screamed in agony. His death would have been quicker and less agonizing if he’d remained in the ship.
A hard piece of his spacecraft smashed down on his head, and he welcomed the darkness.
As his ship plummets toward Earth, Cael believes his life to be over. His last ditch effort to save himself ends in a fiery crash. When he wakes up, he believes he’s entered the afterlife, but his surroundings indicate otherwise. He made it to Earth. But who saved him, and what do they want with him?
Leave a comment with your email address to receive CRASH LANDING swag (signed postcard & magnet). Giveaway ends October 10th, 2012. Thank you!
Jessica Subject started writing to encourage her daughter to read. Now she writes to keep herself grounded. Although she reads many genres, she enjoys writing Science Fiction Romance the most and believes everyone in the universe deserves a happily ever after. She lives Southwestern Ontario, Canada with her husband and two kids and loves to hear from anyone who has enjoyed her stories.
===================================================================== # The small print: Comment and provide your email address before midnight on 10/10/2012 (Australian Central Standard Time) to be entered to win Crash Landing swag (signed postcard & magnet). Winner will be selected via random.org, with winner’s name posted on this blog by 12/10/2012. The winner will be contacted by Jessica E Subject by e-mail; the winner will be required to reply with their postal address so Jessica can send the prize to them.
Only one entry per ISP address. Entrants must be over 18 years of age. By entering, you agree Cassandra and/or Jessica can use your name when announcing the winner if you should win. If potential prize winner forfeits or does not claim the prize, prize will be re-awarded, in Sponsor’s sole discretion. All prizes will be awarded. International entries are welcome. No purchase necessary to enter. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Void where prohibited by law.
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* Draw is on a quarterly basis and announced via newsletter. See here for terms and conditions. ** Swag will also include a mystery! prize! The mystery! prize! will probably be whatever other stuff Cassandra can find lying about the place