Thursday, 27 March 2014

Meeting Authors is a Double Edge Sword

Yep, here is the blog that may kill me. I have to be honest and say some negative things about authors. By the end of this blog, I will probably have my sad on. This blog is going to be a tough one for me to write because I hold authors in such high esteem. I know they are regular people and have off days and get crabby. But when you are meeting people who have taken the time to drive and sometimes fly to see you, you should suck it up and be nice and welcoming because your livelihood depends on them in a way.

 Okay, you have read about my wonderful first meeting with Sherrilyn Kenyon.  She is the gold standard to which I will probably always hold authors. I met her once more since that first time. This time I drove three hours to get my books signed. I have to say that Dianna Love once again was a hit with the crowd. We were in a small Barnes & Noble with very little room to seat people. It was hot and crowded. You could literally see people starting to wilt before the signing even started. I waited in line for about two hours and had the chance to meet up with Dianna as she walked the line talking to people. She was so funny and seemed to genuinely care about what the fans had to say. A few times she would run up and make notes and then comeback and talk some more. By the time I got to the front of the line, I was once again nervous (but not so much that I wanted to run. Sherri was most definitely running out of steam and you could tell it, but she sucked it up and kept on chatting and signing. She was rushed by the managers of the store because they wanted to close, but she kept saying that it would be just a little while longer. She made it through everyone with a lot of grace that I wouldn’t have had.

Moving on to my next meeting with authors...

One night in RP (it was Kris Cook Chatters then), a group of us were yappin. I know shocking, right? Anyhow, someone mentioned AAD, Authors After Dark. I had no idea what they were talking about so I had to ask. Well, it was explained, and I was okay big deal. A few days later several of our authors mentioned they were going to go. I started looking into going, as well. I had to figure out the whole money thing and if I could work up the courage to go and be there with no one I had actually met before. Kris Cook and Melissa Schroeder said I should go. And then Christie Von Ditter and Marcy Barr McDermott said they were going to try and make it as well. I was still hem-hawing about it—until Bonnie Hoffmaster told me she was also going to be there. That sealed my fate. I booked my flight and made my hotel reservations.  
I had never flown before so I got all my tips from my boys at work. I made it to St. Louis, which is about an hour’s drive from my house, about 2 hours before my plane was supposed to take off.  I had copies of everything I thought I might need and was nervously awaiting boarding.  I was so happy that when I got on the plane, there were plenty of empty seats. I moved to the back next to the bathroom in case I got airsick. I told you I had never flown before. The take off was good. No problems. The landing in Philadelphia was rough, not a good feeling for a first time flyer. I was the last one off the plane and made my way to the taxis then I was off to the hotel. I was so nervous that I thought about just hiding in my room.  Bonnie had told me to text her when I got to the hotel. I went up to my room and sat down for a few minutes. Now the conference started on Wednesday, but I didn’t arrive till Friday. I sat there thinking I have to text Bonnie or she will worry. I finally did it. She was down in lounge getting lunch so I slowly made my way down there. I had only talked to Bonnie on the phone and online so I was still really nervous. She saw me before I saw her, and she ran up and gave me the biggest hug. I instantly fell right into ‘This is my friend’ mode and relaxed.

We chatted a few moments and she had to get back so I went to check in at the AAD desk. I picked up my welcome pack and went to the bar to peruse what was going on. I picked out what panels I wanted to sit in on and waited. The first one I wanted to go to was one on ebooks. Why, you ask, would I want in on that one? Well, two reasons: Melissa Schroeder and Kris Cook. Both of them were going to be on the panel, and I wanted to see them before they knew who I was. Yep, still chicken bawk, bawk, bawk. That didn’t work out so well for me. I took the elevator up and walked into the room and saw Christie and Marcy at the same time as they saw me. Hugs all around and then I noticed, damn it all to hell, Kris and Mel were standing there, too. My heart started pounding, and I thought I was going to pass out.

Kris looked at me took a step toward me and gave me the biggest hug ever. He then passed me off to Mel, who also hugged me. I thought I was going to die. Two of my favorite authors had just hugged me. We chatted a few moments, and I have no recollection of what was said, then I lucked out and the panel was ready to start. We found our seats and I was able to take a breath. As the panel went on, I noticed several other authors. Some I knew, others I had no clue. I looked back when someone asked a question and there was Eliza Gayle. I had chatted with her online but did not know here that well. She was talking and looking around, and she smiled at me. I think I smiled back, but I am not sure. It was all a blur. I am not sure what happened next either. But then I found myself sitting at a table down in the lounge area with several people I didn’t know. Kris and everyone was chatting like crazy, and I was just trying to take it all in without looking like an idiot.

Then the worst thing happened…

Melissa came down to join us. I was at the end of the table and she sat right next to me. Once again, I was beset by nerves and I think I mumbled something but I couldn’t concentrate on anything from that point on. After a few drinks, everyone went their separate ways for dinner.

By nature, I am a lurker. I am not outgoing or a social butterfly. I people watch and, sometimes, I see things that others don’t. I met a few more authors and was not overly impressed by them. Overall, I liked most of the ones I met. Eliza Gayle made a big impression on me. I liked her books but now I liked her as a person as well. It made me want to buy her books and help her in some small way become more successful. I also met Kendra Egert. Wow, what a wonderful woman. I have met her again this year. And yep, she is still amazing. I wish I had gotten the chance to spend more time with her.

Now moving on to the ones that I didn’t really like. Nope, I am not mentioning names. They didn’t really do anything that pissed me off, but they really were not friendly either. Most I was very ambivalent about. That is never a good thing. As an author, when you are making public appearances, you always have to be onstage. You are not just selling your books. You are somewhat selling yourself. I am more likely to buy a book from someone who made me feel welcome and like they were interested in what I had to say than someone who just looked bored and wanted to be anywhere other than where they were. I know that a lot of authors are shy or kind of introverted but you have to suck it up and put yourself out there and sell your books and yourself (no, for all you dirty minded people, I didn’t mean that one literally). If you don’t think you can do that then you need to either take a class or stay home and just be more outgoing online. I know what I am speaking of, believe it or not.

For those of you who don’t know me, I hate everyone and go from there. I am not really outgoing but since I work in retail, I learned to tolerate people for 5 minutes and then move on to the next crazy. Sometimes you are surprised and like someone or, at least, make a connection for a minute. That is all it takes for a reader to decide whether they want to read your books or just ignore you forever. I know that when I tell customers that I have met an author and what they were like it helps sell their books. I still have to suck it up and convince myself to go to conventions but sometimes meeting an author makes it worth all the stress.

Sinfully Sarcastic,

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Mia's Blog

This blog is for Mia Ashlinn. She beta reads my blogs looking for the multitude of grammatical errors that run rampant through anything I write whether it be blogs or letters or posts. Anyway she is always telling me that her favorite blogs are the ones where I am more personal, so this is all her fault and you can send her all the messages.

I am sitting here nekkid, yep, I said nekkid. I am all alone except for my cat who seems to be looking at me with disgust. I am nervous, self-conscious and scared. Now you are scared, but no need there will be no pictures. I bet you are hoping this doesn’t go into the dreaded TMI zone. You are safe, I promise…. maybe mwahahahahaha. Why then am I nekkid, scared, and self- conscious, because this is blog is about one of my rediscovered favorite things, baths. That explains the nekkid and the self- conscious but the nervous….. well I am actually writing it while I am in the tub so I am worried about knocking the computer in the water. Anyway, a bath is something we dreaded as kids but long for as adults. And I have recently found the joy again.

A few of you might know that I recently moved, my new apartment has given me something I have never had in my life. A private bathroom. This is HUGE!!! Not the bathroom but the fact that I have one that I only share with my cats. I am one of those rare people who has never lived alone. I grew up with 11 siblings and my mother so a bathroom to myself was never an option. My entire adult life I have lived with at least one sibling which means hurry up and get out of the bathroom so I have only been able to take showers.

One of the things that sold me on this apartment was that I would have the master bedroom, with that came a walk in closet and a private bathroom. I moved in October and that means I get extremely busy with work. But with the New Year, for those who work in retail, means February. I have more time. I have started to find something that I haven’t done since I was a girl. Baths. I had forgotten how relaxing they could be. I took my first bath a few weeks ago and I will get to that but I need to explain something.
I have a love hate relationship with water. I don’t even enjoy drinking it. I grew up drinking spring water that my grandfather always had around so city water and most bottled water makes me want to heave. I almost drowned a couple of times as a kid even though I had two years of swim lessons. Everyone in my family swims like the fishes but I sink to the bottom everytime. I know how to swim but I still sink because I can’t relax I guess. I love the rain but I don’t like to be submerged in water except for baths.

I took my first bath in years a few weeks ago and it was only because I pulled a leg muscle at work and it kept tightening up so I decided a bath would help loosen it before bed. I started the water added Burt’s Bees Therapeutic Bath Crystals and stepped in. Sidebar here, anyone else  notice that you can stand the hottest showers but step into the tub with the same temperature water and you feel like a lobster being prepared for dinner? I fixed the water temperature so I could actually sit in it without needing the paramedics. Then something amazing happened, my whole body started to relax. I leaned back and thought of nothing. I had found solitude except for Grimm who felt the need to sit on the edge and look at me like I was a freak.  I stayed in the tub for a little while that first time but I decided this would become a private ritual between me and my cat (mainly because he won’t leave).

I have now started to take baths every couple of days. I still need my morning shower to wake up but a lot of nights I will get my drink of choice, my computer and just head to the tub. Why my computer you ask because Midsommer Murders helps me relax so I need Netflix. I will get the temp of the water just right and climb on in for at least one episode. I do however need to let water out and refill when it gets cold because an episode is about 90 minutes.

It surprised me how much I am loving my time in the tub. I can watch DCI Tom Barnaby solve crimes in the villages of Midsommer and think about whatever is bothering me on any given day. There is only one thing missing and this is where you all come in. I need a good bubble bath. I hate shopping so please give a girl some suggestions.

Sinfully Sarcastic,


Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Contemplating St. Patrick's Day

I am reflecting over my heritage, which is a mix of Irish, Scottish, English, French and American Indian—Cherokee to be exact.

Wondering what a romance novel would be like centered in Ireland with magical, little elves running around with their pots of gold in meadows carpeted by shamrocks for the lovely lass and lad to find each other.

Or what about a story with men in kilts playing the bagpipes on the hill as two young lovers enjoy a warm summer day.

Or a tale of an English lady swept off her feet by a handsome ruffian who turns out to be the prince of the realm.

Or perhaps an account of a poor French maiden who while stomping on the marquis’s grapes is approached by none other than the lord himself, who she finds incredibly handsome.

Or a story about a young innocent virgin captured by an Indian chief, who falls madly in love with her.

Mmm…all have merit but none are clicking with me at the moment.

That’s a little glimpse into my crazy writer’s brain. Something catches my attention. A little kernel of an idea. Sometimes it lands on fertile ground in the gray matter. Sometimes it doesn’t.

One that did was the very beginning of what became the town Wilde Nevada—which is where The Wilde Brothers serial, The Strong Cowboys serial, and the latest series, which is titled simply Wilde, Nevada, take place.

It started with the idea of what would happen when a virgin arrives at a town where the common and accepted practice is men sharing one wife. That little seed germinated for sometime in my imagination until one day it was all I could think about. The first person to inhabit all my thoughts was Austin Wilde. I still love him to this very day. Jessie came next and then the other four brothers. I’ve said it before—these people are real to me. (Don’t turn me in to the men in white coats, unless they are sexy Doms…he he he)
I’m always so anxious to see what will happen next in the lives of my friends in Wilde and now also in Destiny, Colorado.

But I have drifted, haven’t I? Back to St. Patrick’s Day and my Irish heritage.

A traditional blessing on you, my dear Righteous Perverts:

May the sun shine, all day long,
everything go right, and nothing wrong.
May those you love bring love back to you,
and may all the wishes you wish come true!



Chloe Lang

For a list of all of Chloe’s books visit Siren-Bookstrand:


Wednesday, 12 March 2014


Well since Jenika decided to do a little man candy I thought I might as well make it a week of Man Candy !!! So here are a few of my favorite pictures. Yes, Cherie Clark I am going into my hottie closet to select a few delicious pictures. 

A Kiss is just a Kiss .....

Sometimes being Bad is so Good

  A Rope is a tool except when it is Art

 Three is a crowd or ..........Not

 Cuddling is good for the Mind and Body

And sometimes we just need a giggle

 I hope you all enjoyed these pictures as much as I did

Sinfully Sarcastic,


Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Man Candy and Inspirational Tuesday - Jenika Snow

I thought it would be fun to have a post about the smexyness that inspires us. I have a special folder on my computer that I stash a bunch of sexy photos, ones that help inspire me to write a scene, get a character in my head, or heck, just look at it! I surf Google and Pinterest, see someone that catches my eye, and put it in a little folder to ogle at when I’m in need ;) . Of course my husband would probably like the folder dedicated to him…lol
I am sure I am like many other people that write stories, and see the characters in my head and go from there. But, I did want to share a few pictures from my “special” folder, ones that actually have clothes on, that I have looked at countless times when I need that little extra jumpstart. Maybe this will give others the inspiration that they need one day! But regardless if it does it for you or not, it sure is fun to look at!

This one if for a nice little Shifter Fix                                    

 Dom anyone?  



I have used this particular one to get into a bondage scene. And I am a sucker for a guy in a suit!

Anyone else like a man that takes control? 

And this one is just because…look at him!

So, what do you need to get inspired? Do you have your own folder with naughty little pics in it? Do you have a favorite that go back to countless times? What about a song or book, movie or scene that you’ve read form one of your favorite authors that has stuck in your mind and you go back to it repeatedly?


*pictures acquired from Pinterest

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Don't Go Breaking My Heart

Now, you are singing that song, aren’t you? I love Don’t Go Breaking My Heart, but I am not talking about Elton John and Kiki Dee. This blog is one that no one wants to write, which is why I am sitting here with Grimm in my lap trying to be nice when I write it. This will be full of the truth that everyone wants to say but are afraid to say. I know everyone will say that I am being overly harsh but suck it up, Buttercup and learn to deal.

I will say that some of this is going to be taken from my own problems but some will be from stories I have heard from others. If you recognize yourself in my blog, sorry, but this is from my perspective. If you don’t like it, I guess you can stop reading or comment below. I will not be using names, either, as much as I may want to.

Time to get started.

Where shall I start? I guess I’ll start at the beginning, not of my life but at the beginning of my online life.
Let’s see, I am a techno newbie. I have always loved books and libraries so I never felt the need to get a computer when I could drive two miles and spend my day perusing the shelves at the library.  To be honest, the only reason I wanted to get a computer is one day while I was at my nieces, she was telling me about some author she read having a cool website. I figured while I was there, I would look up one of my favorite authors, Sherrilyn Kenyon. 

Wow, was I surprised at what I found. I loved it. I decided right then that I needed to stop fighting it and start shopping for a computer. It took me about six months to figure out what I wanted and get the opinions of every tech person I knew.  My niece finally got fed up and took my ass to Best Buy and picked out my computer.  She set it up and off I went.

First thing I did was go back to Sherri’s site and get signed up. It took me a while, but I finally started to get the hang of it. I had lots of help from some amazing ladies there who were nice enough to teach me the ins and outs of the site. A few of them may be reading this blog. I hung out there most evenings just chatting away with everyone. We became friends and found that we had more in common than just the books.
Here is where I found out that people are really not what they seem. There was one person that I talked to everyday for almost two years. We lived just a few hundred miles from each other and we talked about me driving over to see her. We timed it so that we could meet Sheri at the same time. I packed up my car and off I went. I found that when we actually met in person, it was strange.  We really didn’t have that much in common. Am I glad I met her? Maybe. But it just wasn’t the fun filled trip I was expecting. I found that she was judgmental and kind of rude, too. I was expecting the person I talked to everyday, not the person I actually found. That was burn number one.

I learned a hard lesson that weekend: Never trust your online friends to be the people you expect.
Now, when I moved on over to Facebook, I found several of the people I had met at Sheri’s site. I am glad I did, too. They have been the most honest of my online friends. I have known them for years and, although some of us are not close, I still count them as good friends. They have been nothing but supportive of me and many others. This is what friendship is about.

Now, on to my second lesson in online friendships.  

I met a few people on Facebook and in Kris’s Chats. As many of you know, our chats tend to get really personal and we are very open and sharing about not just the books we also what we read in our lives. I met a few women and we became friends. My first instinct with a couple of them was to be wary, but I let others sway me. That was a mistake.  With time, I started to notice a few things but I so wanted to believe in these ladies that I overlooked things that should have been warning signs. I am not just talking about things said about other people. Now don’t judge. Not one of you can say you have not done that. Anytime you get a group of people together you will find that they gather into small groups and talk about others. We have all done it. The question is ‘Are you just bitching about someone or were you downing the haterade and spreading lies?’ Most people just bitch and are really not malicious about it. Others are what we like to call, ‘shit-stirrers’ and live to start crap between people.

A couple of them started out with the standard, ‘I will do this for you or with you’ and then before you know it, you are all alone. These are normally the friends that just spread themselves too thin. Others just want to be included but don’t really want to do any of the work. I will be honest. I have done the spread myself too thin one. I, sometimes, think I can do something but life happens or whatever. Do I tell the other people most of the time? It just kind of depends on what the project is and if they really need me to help.
Here is where I am going to probably piss people off...

As a rule, I am what I seem to be. If you don’t want my opinion, whatever you do, don’t ask me. I will tell you. I will try and be as nice to you as I can be but sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way. I don’t normally set out to hurt anyone, but if you are crazy enough to ask, I will tell you. I wish everyone was like that. I would rather have people tell me I am a fucking bitch than to be all sweet and kind to my face while they sharpen the blade they are about to plunge into my back. I have been lied to and talked about by not just other people but also by authors who really only see readers as dollar signs. They pretend to be your friend and then when they feel they have found someone else who can help move them up the ladder, they ditch you and start badmouthing you to others. To me, this really shows the character of people, and it really makes me want to hunt them down and do terrible, terrible things to them. I could tell you who these people are, but I will take the high road and let them survive and just hope that Karma swings around and beats the living hell out of them. This is as close as I am going to get to calling them out. I could have been really mean and said things to other readers or in our group, but I decided to just leave well enough alone. I am not alone in this little drama. There are other readers and authors who have been stabbed repeatedly by not only these people, but also by many, many other fake friends. This was one of the hardest lessons to learn. I have learned it and survived. So I will not make that mistake twice.

Now that that rant is over time, it’s time to move on.

We have all been burned by friends, and we won’t even get started on family.  So what is the one thing that bugs you about your friends?  

Sinfully Sarcastic,