Monday, July 30, 2012

What's your romance novel name?

Have you seen this "romance novel name" around on the web? Too funny not to share!

And just because I'm feeling the love (McLovin), leave your romance novel name in the comments section of the rafflecopter for a chance to win a Kindle copy of one of my fave summer reads, The Marriage Bargain by Jennifer Probst! Ends on Monday, August 6.

My Romance Novel Name is: Heidi McKitten.

Thanks to Susan Mallery for this funny.

The Marriage Bargain by Jennifer Probst

A marriage in name only...

To save her family home, impulsive bookstore owner, Alexa Maria McKenzie, casts a love spell. But she never planned on conjuring up her best friend's older brother—the powerful man who once shattered her heart.

Billionaire Nicholas Ryan doesn’t believe in marriage, but in order to inherit his father’s corporation, he needs a wife and needs one fast. When he discovers his sister’s childhood friend is in dire financial straits, he offers Alexa a bold proposition.

A marriage in name only with certain rules: Avoid entanglement. Keep things all business. Do not fall in love. The arrangement is only for a year so the rules shouldn’t be that hard to follow, right?

Except fate has a way of upsetting the best-laid plans…  (Taken from

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Olympics Hump Day Hunks

In honor of the coming Olympics, here are my Olympic Hump Day Hunks. As you'll see, I have a thing for swimmers. Enjoy!
Guiseppe Lanzone (Rowing)
Ryan Bailey (water polo)

Ryan Lochte (Swimmer)

Ryan Lochte

Jake Dalton (Gymnast)
Anthony Ervin (swimming)

Russell Holmes (Volleyball)
Ashton Eaton (Track and Field)
Chay Lapin (Water Polo)

Michael Phelps

Andy Roddick (Tennis)

Australian Swim Team - My oh my!

Update and News: This will most likely be my last Hump Day Hunks posting. I created this post two weeks ago, and just couldn't NOT put it. If you are wondering why, please read this post by author, Roni Loren:

Monday, July 23, 2012

Fifty Shades of Funny - Monday's Funny

As most of you know, I am a fan of the Fifty Shades series. But, I am also a fan of humor. So, I thought I would compile some of the funnies that came about from the Fifty Shades phenomenon.

Fifty Shades of Grey - The Musical (Fans vs. Haters)

Ellen DeGeneres reads Fifty Shades

Didn't like that? How about Gilbert Gottfried. Ewwww...

Have you seen the Selena Gomez parody, Fifty Shades of Blue? Kindof funny.

Saturday Night Live Commercial - Mother's Day Special

Fifty Shades of Grey Karaoke - Jimmy Fallon

Friday, July 20, 2012

Don't Take the Little Things for Granted, Folks!

Next week I will have the awesome chance to visit the good ol' U.S.A.  You don't know how excited I am. It has been a whole year since I stepped foot on American soil. I am going to a Middle School teacher's conference in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. I keep hearing about the RWA conference in Anaheim and so wish I was going there, but the teacher's conference will do. :) 

I am thrilled for various reasons:

1) I haven't been to the U.S. in over a year and I miss it VERY much.
2) I'm actually excited about the conference. It has been a while since I attended a formal conference, because I waited for my boys to grow up. Now my youngest is 6 and-a-half (the 1/2 is very important to him) and I feel better about traveling over 1,000 miles away from him.
3) I will be ALONE. Wow! That word hasn't been in my dictionary a while. I am actually a bit nervous about being on my own (even if I am 40, it's a big deal). I will be sleeping on my own, conferencing on my own, eating on my own, shopping on my own.... I won't know what to do with myself. LOL!
4) After more than 15 years, I will be meeting with an old sorority roomate who happens to live an hour away. So excited to see her! 

All in all, I am bouncing with enthusiasm, anxiety and an open mind!

What am I most excited for about the good ol' U.S.A.? (You will laugh, but it's true):

  • Dr. Pepper: I grew up drinking DP, and now that I'm an expat, it is hard to find. Anytime I am back in America, I order a DP first thing. And drink it and drink it and drink it for my entire trip!

  • TARGET!!!!!! Everytime I step into this wonderworld of magic I actually have to stop and look around, bask in the smell, the view, the openess of a living breathing Target. I love this place and miss it SO much. I could spend an entire day there, just roaming the aisles. EVERY aisle.... even the car parts aisle. LOL! The best part? It's back to school time baby! 

  • American Restaurants - My favorites include anything Tex-Mex (this is always my first stop where I order a DP), Panera bread, Chick Fil'A, Olive Garden or Carrabas, Ruby Tuesday salad bar and don't laugh but a filet o'fish from McDonalds. These are things I do not normally get and my mouth waters just thinking about them. I know I won't be able to eat at all these places this time around, but I will try a few. :)

  • Driving on a Freeway - Yes! Order! Actual lines on the street and people obeying the driving laws. I always forget how perfect it is. Don't laugh, it's true. You try driving in a third-world country.

  • My relaxing resort - I cannot wait to sit and learn from the Middle School gurus. But, I will have my afternoons completely free. So, I plan on hanging a little at the resort.  I hear it's squelching hot in the states, so the pool will be on my list of to-do's everyday.

  • Magic Mike - Okay, this is the sad truth. I really really really want to see this movie, and it hasn't come out in Guatemala and I'm afraid it won't. So, if I have to go see it alone, so be it. Little old lady me sitting in the theatre alone watching men shake their booties off will be interesting, but I'm going to do it. Call me crazy....

Never take what you have for granted, people. Even the small things....

Thanks for stopping by,

Thursday, July 19, 2012

I only have EYES for you... Hump Day Hunks

Did you miss my Hump Day Hunks? Since I participated in Jill Shalvis's blog tour yesterday, I couldn't put up my hunks. But, I won't let you down. Here are the hunks of the week.

It's all about the EYES!

Matt Bomer

Paul Walker
Ian Somerhalder

Marc Dapper

Thanks for stopping by,


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Visiting Author: Jill Shalvis

Today we welcome best-selling author, Jill Shalvis!  It’s a pleasure to have her on my blog during her book blog tour. Welcome Jill!

1. Which character from your books are you most like?
Ha.  Well, I would have to say I have some of Maddie from Simply Irresistible in me, just a tad of that mouse.  But I do have a kickass attitude that matches Amy’s in At Last … so I guess I should confess to that too.

2. How did you begin writing?
I’ve always been a writer.  I was a Journalism major, and before that I wrote short stories to amuse myself.  I think I was born with a pencil in hand…

3. What are your favorite books?
All the Harry Potters.  What can I say, I wish I was a witch.  

Her three latest novels in A Lucky Harbor series, out this summer, include Lucky in Love, At Last and Forever and a Day. See below for the back blurbs:

Lucky in Love
Mallory Quinn has had enough of playing it safe. As a nurse and devoted daughter, she takes care of everyone but herself. And as the local good girl, she's expected to date Mr. Right. But for once, she'd like to take a risk on Mr. Wrong. And who could be more wrong than Ty Garrison? The mysterious new guy in town has made it clear that he's only passing through, which suits Mallory just fine. Besides, his lean, hard 
body and sexy smile will give her plenty to remember once he's gone . . . 

For the first time in his life, Ty can't bear to leave. Helping this sexy seductress-in-training walk on the wild side is making him desire things he shouldn?t?including leaving the military for good. As their just-for-fun fling becomes something more, Mallory and Ty wonder if they could really be this lucky in love. After all . . . anything can happen in a town called Lucky Harbor.

"Top Pick! LUCKY IN LOVE hits all the right notes--funny yet sweet, a light romance that was made all the more unforgettable by its witty heroine and Mysterious Cute Guy hero." ( )

At Last
Amy Michaels loves her new life in Lucky Harbor. A waitress in the local diner, she's looking forward to her first weekend hike through the mountains. But when a wrong turn takes her off the trail, she finds herself up close and personal with forest ranger Matt Bowers. And even though she's tempted to kiss that sexy smile right off his face, she won't make the mistake of getting involved with the town heartthrob.

A former cop whose life went south, Matt doesn't let anyone get too close. But something about the feisty beauty caught his eye the moment he first saw her in the diner. After a hot night under a starry sky, Matt can't deny their attraction-or the fact that for the first time in a long time, he feels the stirrings of something more. Now it's up to Matt to help Amy see that, no matter what is in their past, together they can build a future in Lucky Harbor.

"4 Stars! Shalvis's latest Lucky Harbor novel is a winner-full of laughter, snark and a super-hot attraction between the main characters. Shalvis has painted a wonderful world, full of entertaining supporting characters and beautiful scenery." (RT Book Reviews )

Forever and a Day (available July 31)
Grace never thought she'd be starting her life over from scratch. Losing everything has landed her in Lucky Harbor, working as a dog walker for overwhelmed ER doctor Josh Scott. But the day his nanny fails to show up, Grace goes from caring for Josh's lovable mutt to caring for his rambunctious son. Soon Grace is playing house with the sexy single dad . . . 

With so many people depending on him, Josh has no time for anything outside of his clinic and family-until Grace arrives in town. Now this brainy blonde is turning his life inside out and giving a whole new meaning to the phrase "good bedside manner." Josh and Grace don't know if what they have can last. But in a town like Lucky Harbor, a lifetime of love starts with just one day . . .

"Count on Jill Shalvis for a witty, steamy, unputdownable love story." (Robyn Carr, New York Times bestselling author of Harvest Moon )

If you haven’t read the others in the series, I highly suggest you book it on over to Amazon or Barnes and Noble to download them ASAP! They are a must for any contemporary romance reader.
The series includes: Simply Irresistible, The Sweetest Thing, Head Over Heels. (Click on the title for my book review).

Check out Jill Shalvis's website for book lists, excerpts, hilarious blog and upcoming news.

Thanks for stopping by,

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Favorite Romantic Movie #1: Young Victoria

Yes! I have so many favorite movies, too. So, how can I just pick a few? Well, today I will focus on the last romance movie I viewed and loved.

Young Victoria -  Released in 2009. Director - Jean-Marc Vallee. The story of Queen Victoria's rule and her love with Prince Albert. What a beautiful rendition and the two actors, Emily Blunt and Rupert Friend, are gorgeous to look at. Just the look in their eyes when they stare at each other is enough to make my heart melt. Ahhhh...

If you don't know the history of her crown, this is a good introduction to her early ruling. She became queen at the ripe old age of seventeen. But, of course, the romantic in me loves Victoria and Albert's love story. They married, had 9 (yes 9!) children and Albert died young at the age of 42 from an illness. Victoria mourned his death for the rest of her reign.

Some of my favorite scenes:

She chooses him to dance at her coronation ball.

Playing chess as they get to know eachother. Albert's famous line: " Then you had better master the rules of the game until you play it better than they can. "

Prince Albert shows up after being summoned, and he knows she will proposed to him!

First loves on their wedding night.

Romantic quotes from the movie: (taken from

Princess Victoria: You don't recommend I find a husband to play it for me? 
Prince Albert: I should find one to play it with you, not for you. 


Prince Albert: I'm going back to England. 
Baron Stockmar: There must be a reason if you wish to visit Her Majesty. 
Prince Albert: Then find me a reason. 


Queen Victoria: [sobbing] I'm so sorry! I thought I was going to lose you! 
Prince Albert: I don't think he was a very good shot. 
Queen Victoria: Why did you do it? So stupid, why did you do it? 
Prince Albert: I had two very good reasons. First, I am replaceable and you are not. 
Queen Victoria: You are not replaceable to me! 
Prince Albert: Second, you're the only wife I've got or ever will have. You are my whole existence, and I will love you until my very last breath. 

If you haven't watched this movie yet, you better get to it! A wonderfully dreamy romance in between a historical tale of lovely and wise Queen Victoria.

Thanks for stopping by,


Monday, July 16, 2012

Word Choice Funny - Happy Monday

Word Choice - choosing words that make your writing a masterpiece. 

How do you choose the best words for your writing? Do you just write and then later go back and edit the words or are you one of those brilliant writers who has a dictionary/thesaurus embedded in your brain and the right word comes when summoned?

As I work on my newest WIP, I can tell when I am having a bad day. I use and reuse the same words or phrases all the time. Here are my favorites this week:

Come on! 
Why all my characters are saying this is beyond me!
I promise to try not to use this anymore as a tag. My characters are just happy!
I was just saying...
I don't even know where or why this came about.

As I came upon today's Monday funny topic, I decided this was the BEST video to show in honor of WORD CHOICE. I could not stop laughing for 5 full minutes after watching this commercial. Be forewarned - language advisory!

Hope you %#"[^@ ENJOYed it! Thanks for stopping by,

Friday, July 13, 2012

Give Fifty Shades a Break!

My Soapbox - get ready for the exclamation marks!!!!!!

It's a part of life. People have opinions. As a quiet person, I find it quite annoying when people don't shut up about one opinion or another. Yeah, it's okay to just say what you believe, but to go on and on about it drives me crazy. Be it politics, news, work issues, or....writing. 

One of my pet peeves is how people think romance writing is not true writing. It is! We romance writers have to plan our books (although I would call myself a panster, I do plan what I write in my head), create believable characters and conflict, write convincing descriptions, choose correct word choices, and, oh yeah, add that to-die-for romantic tension. But, there are all types of romance writing. They all cannot be the same and wouldn’t it be boring if they were?

My latest pet peeve is the Fifty Shades of Grey bickering. There are plenty of people who have opinions about Fifty Shades. But, why is it that I hear more negative comments than any other? (Especially from those who have only read a snippet of the series).  I know there are people out there who ENJOY the book. Like me. There. I said it. Well, I think it's because the lovers of the book are scared to say they like the book, behind all the negative hype. No matter what, there are going to be views on both sides. Love it or hate it. 

But, I want to say to those other writers… How dare you?

Do I go around saying how much I hate every book I don't like? No! Why? Because, first I don't think I have a right to do that. I am by far not the best writer in the world, and unless you are William Shakespeare or Charles Dickens, you aren’t either!

Second, I don’t say anything negative because I know how hard it is to write something! We should be there to support other writers. We, as writers, should know how hard it is to birth a book and give it life. Our books are our second lives. We live and breathe these books. That book you are criticizing is someone’s baby. Would you tell another person, “Oh, your baby is really ugly. Why did you conceive him.” No!

Third, we should be happy that this book put Erotica on the radar. I never really opened up an erotica novel before this, since I am more about the emotion behind the romance. This book showed me that there is emotion behind erotica! So, I find Fifty Shades an eye-opener. 

By the way, would you, as a writer, NOT want to be in E.L. James position - becoming a worldwide phenomenon, selling millions of books in three months’ time, becoming a household name?

So, bravo E.L. James! Although you have critics out there, you also have romance authors who strive to do what you've done. If I could be in your shoes, I would be an even happier woman. 

Hopefully, I haven’t lost any fans out there. I’m just saying it how it is, which is a big deal for a shy girl from bodunk Louisiana. J

Now, I’m off to read the last in the Grey series. So, there!


Next Best Thing Challenge

The Next Best Thing Challenge

I was tagged to participate in the 'Next Best Thing Challenge' by the talented writer and blogger, L.J. Kentowski over at L.J. Writes. Make sure you check out her blog and her novel, Guardian of Fate.

The rules are simple:

1. Answer the 10 NBTC questions below
2. Spread the fun and tag 5 awesome people to participate

So, here we go!

1. What is the title of your book/WIP?
Since I already answered questions about Time Changes Everything, I decided to answer about my current WIP, Frequent Flyer.

2. Where did the idea for the book come from?
Ideas are always coming to me. This particluar story stemmed from my widowed brother-in-law. He has reentered the dating scene and has to raise two daughters on his own. So, I thought, wouldn't that be a fun guy to write. Colin is nothing like my BIL, but he did make the idea come to me.

3. What genre would your book fall under?
Contemporary Romance

4. Which actors would you choose your characters to play in a movie rendition?
I recently cast the roles in my head, entirely based on looks. Are you ready?

Dr. Colin Calaway ...... Chris O'Donnell

Hope Robinson ..... Candace Cameron

5. What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
Composed and professional principal Hope Robinson has found her perfect match, but Colin Calaway is her doctor and a student's father! Per the rules, they cannot date, but somehow they always end up together.

6. Is your book published or represented?
This is a WIP, so no, it is not published... YET! My goal is to finish by the end of August and have it in Queryland by mid-September.

7. How long did it take you to write?
Still writing. I am trying to get through it quickly!

8. What other books in your genre would you compare it to?
I have always read category romance, particularly Harlequin Special Edition. So, I would say it is simliar to this line.

9. Which authors inspired you to write this book?
My author inspirations at the moment are Jill Shalvis and Shannon Stacey.

10. Tell us anything else that might pique our interest in your book.
You can read any Six Sentence Sunday excerpts HERE.

Now on to the five awesome people I'd love to see take part in this challenge!
Kimberly Sullivan
Donna B. McNicol at My Write Spot
Mina Lobo at Some Dark Romantic
Heather Murphy at Random Interruptions
Andrea Teagan at The Enchanted Writer