June 9 2015 Romance Weekly

#LoveChatWrite

#LoveChatWrite

Do you like to read romance novels? Wouldn't you like to know more about your favorite authors? Well you came to the right place! Join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all..... About our writing of course! Every week we'll answer questions and after you've enjoyed the blog on this site we'll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride! Tell your friends and feel free to ask us questions in the comment box.

Welcome Back readers! Make sure to check out J.J. Devine's thoughts on theme if you haven't yet. 

This week our blog topic is from the talented Ronnie Allen, author of Gemini. She wants to know about theme today and asks us: 

What is a theme in your novel or reoccurring throughout a series that sends a message about an issue in society? Was it developed intensionally, or did it evolve through the characters and plot?

Ronnie struck fear into my heart. 

Theme is a difficult subject for me. I never sit down with an idea for a piece of writing with a particular theme in mind. I fear, if I did have a particular theme in mind, I would force the writing to that theme instead of allowing the story to tell itself naturally. 

I'll start with my genre: romance, of course. A general theme in my writing by default is that love conquers all or that there is someone for everyone (at least in my stories there is someone for everyone) despite some huge obstacles, like being an alien for instance, or keeping a bunch of secrets. I feel love is an obvious theme for a romance novel! I'm not sure how this would relate to society except that we can all use a little more love in our lives even when (or especially when) we feel alienated from others.

Is there another theme in my writing?

My Sixxer world is focused on the hidden among us, namely aliens living among humans trying to survive. A huge theme in this world is: The Illusion of Control. 

In the Sixxer world, whether humans or Sixxers, each believes they have the upper hand. It's all an illusion, and one that comes crashing down on the characters frequently. I didn't do this on purpose. I believe this theme evolved naturally as I discovered the world my characters live in. It's probably because of the underlying issue that I always think I have control of the situation and then my toddler throws his dinner on the floor or runs off with my shoe. I'm not sure how this affects society but it certainly affects me when my illusion shatters. 

Next on the hope is Xio Axelrod, author of The Calum. I'm curious what theme(s) she's identified in her work.  

See you next week!

March 24 2015 Romance Weekly

#LoveChatWrite #RomanceWeekly

#LoveChatWrite #RomanceWeekly

Do you like to read romance novels? Wouldn't you like to know more about your favorite authors? Well you came to the right place! Join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all..... About our writing of course! Every week we'll answer questions and after you've enjoyed the blog on this site we'll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride! Tell your friends and feel free to ask us questions in the comment box.

Romance Weekly is back. Welcome! I'm in the midst of an awesome hop this week. Leslie Hachtel is before me on the hop list so if you haven't read her post be sure to stop by and visit.

Raine Balkera Sing To Me

Raine Balkera Sing To Me

Raine Balkera, Author of Sing To Me,  is curious on what we are currently working on. She wants details and she's giving out five bonus points for a scene sneak peak. 

I definitely want the bonus points. I wonder if I can get 10 points for including two different works? Hope so! (Yes, I'm an overachiever.) 

In Fiona's land I've been working and working on edits for a manuscript I plan to self-publish this summer. The edits are getting ever closer to being finished. So close, in fact, I want to jump up and down and squee with joy but I can't because there's still a little bit left to do. I have a postcard below with some visuals and I'll give a brief summary of this paranormal romance: 

Novel Manuscript: Circle of Lies 

As a former M83 soldier, Raz vows to never get involved in the fight against humans again. Once Raz realizes the extent of the Sixxer destruction he is forced into a battle that will include fighting his heart. Sandra is drawn to the mysterious Raz. She'll be thrown into a world where it's hard to tell the truth from the lies. There is no turning back as her heart convinces her to fall in love again.

Before I include a scene I've also been working on a short story for an anthology the Crossroads Romance Writers is planning on self-publishing in this summer. The anthology will be Titled The Hope Chest. The short was a fun story to write and I hope it will give readers a taste of my Sixxer world. Here is a summary: 

Anthology Short: Love's Light 

Senza & Trevor are forced apart for four years by a mysterious light. The deaths of Senza’s maternal aunt & Trevor’s paternal grandfather bring them back home to face this power between them. Will they be able to see the light is a manifestation of their love or will it continue to bring darkness into their lives?

Love's Light

Love's Light

The world of both stories is filled with secrets, conspiracy, aliens, chases and of course how the characters find love in such a turbulent environment where reality seems to fall off the deep end. The aliens, who I've affectionally named Sixxers, have supernatural power and this power is starting to manifest in humans as well. There is also the problem of certain ego-centric and greedy humans attempting to use science to gain the alien power for themselves unnaturally.  

 

Now for the fun part!

A scene from Love's Light

A peak of sunrise illuminated the window. The warmth coming from Trevor's arms chased the cold away. Senza had never belonged but imagining she was alien sent shards of ice into her soul. “Why did you leave?”

The Light

The Light

    “Violet said the light would consume you. We'd never tame it.”

    Senza jumped up from the bed. “She knew it was mine?”

    Trevor placed the back of his hand on his knee. Mist formed a ball of light in his palm. “I've gotten pretty good at manipulating it.”

    Senza touched him. The light faded. She desperately wanted to control this gift. Would Trevor teach her? “What are we?”

    “Grandpa called us Sixxers. The closest contact to other Sixxers was in Switzerland but then Grandpa and Violet died.”

    “There are people after us?”

    Senza’s stomach dropped. She couldn’t bear the thought of getting the call telling her Trevor was dead. Senza whipped Violet's purse from the dresser and held up the car keys. “Aunt Violet didn't own a car.”

    They left the room with shadows behind them. Senza opened the garage door and a shiny new Expedition glinted as the interior light fell on the surface.

    Trevor peered in the back seat. “It's packed.”

    Senza opened the cargo bay. A large wooden box filled half the space. “Aunt Violet’s hope chest.”

    Senza's vision blurred. Two inches below the cushion a red light pulsed. Trevor moved to open it but Senza held him back.

    Trevor said, “It’s okay.”

    “It is a violation of her privacy.”

    Trevor kissed her forehead. “We'll take a nap. Rest will give us a clear head.”

    Senza wrapped her arms around him and nuzzled his chest. She never believed his warmth and love would surround her again. “Do you have any idea how much I’ve missed you?”

    Trevor squeezed her. She loved the safety of his big bear arms.

    “I’m not leaving you again. We'll figure this out.”

    Senza blinked back tears that should've been dried up hours ago. The love was there but was it right? How long could they go before another accident destroyed them? The spark of light was already highlighting Trevor’s eyes. She waited for the burst to sneak between their bodies. Nothing happened. Heat caressed her back. Over her shoulder the red light pulsed in the wooden chest. She lifted the heavy lid. A glow came from a small metal box decorated with flowers and butterflies. There were other items in the chest, baby clothes, newspaper clippings and pictures. Senza wept.

    Trevor’s hands massaged her shoulders. “It’s okay. It’s supposed to be hard. It’s how we know we loved them.”

    The wetness on her face couldn’t be stopped as tears fell. “These are pictures of my mother and father.” She handed a few to Trevor. “Here is your grandpa.”

    Trevor took the photo and gazed at it a long time. “He looked good. Happy.”

    Senza opened the metal box and inside were handwritten note cards. Senza read aloud. “Found this baby outfit while shopping with my sister. Neither of us are married yet but I’ll save if for my day.”

    Senza turned the card over and brought her fingers to her lips.

    Trevor read the back for her. “I hope Senza’s baby wears this outfit now. I can’t wait to meet him.”

    Tears rolled down her face and pinpricks of pain jabbed her eyes.

    Trevor kissed her cheek.

    Senza said, “She wrote this yet kept us apart. Why?”

    “Let’s take a break.” Trevor gently tugged on the items but Senza couldn't let them go. He pulled a cloth bag from under the hope chest and gave it to her. “Keep them close.”

    Senza sniffed and filled the bag with love.

    Trevor lifted an old newspaper. “Oh, my God.”

    “What is it?”

    “The headline reads: Edward Gate Abandons UFO House Admits Pressure From Public.”

    “What?”

    Trevor said, “Grandpa told the news reporter, ‘There are no crop circles in the desert. My house isn’t plagued by aliens. These stories have no basis in fact and I’m not moving.’ Down here it says. ‘The number of UFO sighings or reports of strange lights near Edward Gate’s house have been in the teens since moving in ten years prior. Whatever Gate is doing people want him out.’ What happened at Grandpa’s house?”

    “Strange lights? Do you think it was like our light? Edward had power.”

    “I don't know.” Trevor rubbed his eyes. “The words are starting to blur on me.”

    “How long have you been awake?”

    “Two days, maybe?”

    “We both need sleep.” Senza placed the newspaper clipping in her bag. An arc leapt from her fingers to the paper. Tingles ran up her arms. The light's power got stronger every hour. She grabbed Trevor’s hand and pulled him from the garage and down the hall to her old bedroom.

    Trevor chuckled. “You have no idea how many times I imagined you doing this when we were in high school.”

    Senza shook her head. A light fluttering of desire poured into her belly. She had imagined the same. “Sleep only. We can’t risk a burst now.”

 

Scene from Circle of Lies:

“Are you going to risk your life for these people? Don’t you know I need you here?”

    “Cam, please put the light down.”

    “Our research is too important to abandon.”

    Cameron stood in front of her. The light was too harsh, the darkness too black. Cameron always understood her, supported her. This had been too much to ask of him.

    “You're a good friend. Please understand I have to do this.”

    “Pulling the friend card? You don’t know what you’re talking about. Nothing good would come from you leaving Angelville.”

    The rapid fire knocking on the door spun her around. Cameron’s light followed. The glow fanned around her.

    “Time’s run out.” Cameron didn’t wait for her and strode half way to the entrance before Sandra could move. The light bobbed and weaved as he opened the door. Cameron guided Paris to a seat near his workstation. Sean stayed close to her. He typically raced over to Sandra talking one hundred miles a minute. Maybe the darkness of the basement scared him. It terrified her.

    Sandra focused on Raz and his eyes flashed with the reflected light of the flashlight. No. His eyes brightened from within like they had in her office. He also looked more muscular and damned sexy.

    Cameron was right. Sandra didn’t know what she was getting herself into.

    Raz’s eyes narrowed and took in her position on the stool, elbows resting on her knees. She pulled her shoulders back and sat upright.

    “Are you okay?” Raz asked.

    “She got a little light headed.” Cameron handed Sandra the flashlight. “I’ll be right back. I’m going to check the generator. There’s another flashlight in the cabinet.”

    “Sean, would you get the extra one?” Sandra pointed to the drawer. She watched Cameron’s retreating back and wondered if he would confront Raz. About what she couldn’t be sure. Her conversation with Cameron made her uneasy. What exactly was she risking for Raz?

    Raz continued to stare at her. “What happened?”

    “Nothing sugar won’t fix.” She held up the last of the fruit roll-up. Sean found the Maglight, switched it on, and set it beside his mother. The impromptu lantern bathed the front of the room in a semi-glow but left her and Raz in the outer fringes of darkness.

    Raz leaned down to her as if to kiss her and his spicy scent created a laser beam of heat straight between her legs. Her face flushed and she broke eye contact. She glanced to the right. Paris and Sean didn’t appear to notice them. Sandra eased off the stool. Raz’s fingers reached out and caught hers and pulled her back to the seat. She didn’t resist. Her body wanted to be closer to him. She stared at their joined hands not sure what was happening. Heat oozed from his skin.

    “Why didn’t you tell me you hadn’t had anything to eat today?” Raz whispered. His lips almost touched her ear. Warm breath fluttered along her neck. The promise of heat and the softness of his lips on her teased. He moved closer and every nerve in her body came alive.

Circle of Lies

Circle of Lies

    “We had other, more important, matters to worry about.”

    “Stop making me worry about you.”

    Sandra wanted him to get closer. He cradled her hand and his fingertips caressed her palm. Feathered. Stroked. His lips softly brushed her neck. Her eyes fluttered from the sweet and erotic kiss. A small moan escaped. She swiveled, her lips centimeters from his. Cinnamon enveloped her as their breaths entwined. She wanted this kiss more than anything. She didn’t care who witnessed it.

    “Sandra.” Cameron quietly said behind her. “I need you.”

    Sandra froze with her lips millimeters away from Raz’s.

    Cameron stood four feet away. His low voice drew the attention of Paris and Sean and all eyes fell on Sandra. She refused to blush but the heat slowly creeped along her neck.

    Cameron held out his hand and she jumped down and took a few tentative steps toward him. Raz’s grip on her arm stopped her.

    Cameron no longer wore his lab coat and his khaki shirt and moss green pants looked out of place and intimidating.

    “I can’t get the generator started.” Cameron’s voice lacked the camaraderie they shared a few minutes ago and contained a hardness she never heard before. His expression suggested he wasn’t as concerned with the generator as he was with what in the hell had been going on in the dark corner. With Raz. She wanted to know too.

***

Hope you enjoyed these sneak peaks. There's more from our other Romance Weekly authors if you continue the blog hop. Next up we'll (hopefully - pretty please) read some scenes from author, Ronnie Allen. See you next week!

Photos provided by depositphotos.com

 

September 09 2014 Romance Weekly

#LoveChatWrite

#LoveChatWrite

Do you like to read romance novels? Wouldn't you like to know more about your favorite authors? Well you came to the right place! Join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all..... About our writing of course! Every week we'll answer questions and after you've enjoyed the blog on this site we'll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride! Tell your friends and feel free to ask us questions in the comment box.

If you hopped from Ronnie Allen, The Mind Behind The Crime, or started the week’s hop here. Welcome!

I’m glad to be back for Romance Weekly this week. Beth Carter submitted our questions. Make sure to visit Beth’s Banter after checking out the fun below.

 

What is your favorite aspect of novel writing? Dialogue? Setting? Conflict? Narration? Explain.

My favorite part of novel writing is world building. For me it’s more than creating a setting or time period. In my world building I start out with a place and it grows organically from there as I intertwine the larger series goals into each novel. So far, I identify a location that I really enjoyed exploring and keep bringing it back into other stories. It’s also more about the interrelationships between my characters and the locations. I’ve kept my world building on planet Earth but I have future plans for worlds in different dimensions and possibly on different planets. 

How do you choose the setting for your plot? Are they always similar settings or does it vary? (i.e. small towns, big city, castle, etc.) 

My settings are either in a small town where I’ve placed an important university surrounded by mountains and forests or in a corporate setting in a larger town not necessarily a big city. For my current series, I like to keep the settings similar or at least incorporate a location or locations across novels as it helps me focus on the overarching plot of the series. My stories aren’t continuations of the previous one but they do take place in the same world sphere and having them too different would pull me out of the fun. I get my settings mostly from places I’ve lived or been but I make up fictional town names. It gives me a little more freedom. I wrote a manuscript with a location that I have never been to and the research was very hard to say the least. 

Beth Carter is a big six-word memoir fan. (Hemingway even wrote one.) Describe your writing day using just six words.

A hectic muddle of chaotic joy.

 

That memoir made me tired. :)  

I’m curious to find out about J.J. Devine’s six-word memoir. On with the show. See you next week.