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Friday, November 30, 2012

Rocky Mountain Hijinks

Nicole Austin, possibly Brenna Zinn, and I are planning a winter trip to Colorado so Brenna made this hysterical video that I just had to share. ROFL! The scary part is this is exactly how the 3 of us would behave. Or should I say misbehave.

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Shiny Kingdom's Ninja Takes Over

So how does one get turned onto erotic romance books? That was turned onto, not turned on by (wink). Sadly for me, such discovery came late in life, and by the launch of the first iPhone. Need to escape from reality? Need some spice in your sex life? Apple wasn't lying with their "there's an app for that" motto! With the Kindle app just downloaded and the help of Lora Leigh's Forbidden Pleasures, I was propelled, more like sucked into my first erotic romance book. I've never been one to think of myself as naive. Demure would never be a word I'd use to describe myself. But with every word my eyes saw and my mind processed...let's just say both widened. I'll admit, I blushed. At one point I even blurted out, "WTF!" It wasn't the actual content of the book that had caught me off guard as much as it was the fact those words were in print. Apparently I was naive, though I could've cared less because in that moment, or hours of reading was I was in heaven. Not only had I found something über fantastic to submerge myself in to get away from reality, but I also found another creative outlet. Writing. From there I took off in a full on sprint. First I wrote a book solely for myself, then proceeded to try my hand at writing and submitting one to a publisher. That book died a quick death. I was determined to try again, but alas life got in the way a bit, and I've been on hiatus since. I've always had respect for authors, and now after having attempted the sort, my respect and admiration has grown exponentially. At least for the authors whose writing I can respect. Like any profession, there's always The Good, The Bad, and The Fugly! Nothing pisses me off more than a book so wretched that it makes me involuntarily throw my phone against the nearest wall. That only pisses me off more since my phone is my life, then I just can't bring myself to read that author again. There are many fantabulous authors. Of course I have my personal favorites. And those fine women know who they are. If any ladies out there need a helpful hint...start with the one and only, Allie Standifer, and The Sassy Seven!!!
~ elece ~

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Welcome to Shiny Kingdom's Greediest Cuddler, Lady Margie!

OK! I admit it! I do deserve a smack “upside the head” for sure! I walked away from reading romance novels back in the 70’s. As a teenager I devoured books by Victoria Holt and Phyllis A. Whitney who wrote those virgin heroines being rescued by the arrogant, brooding Lord of the Castle type heroes in Gothic romance. I moved on, as a young adult in college, to the best-selling “bodice rippers” of Kathleen Woodiwiss (The Flame and the Flower, The Wolf and the Dove) and Rosemary Rogers (Sweet Savage Love) which encompassed more intimate and sexy love scenes, as well as kidnapping and (dare I say it?) rape scenes. **swoon**. Very daring for 1972. I loved those books! So why did I stop reading romance novels at this point? Good question. I don’t have an answer. Maybe my Nancy Drew obsession from elementary school age took over my mind. In any event it was mysteries, fantasy-science fiction and action thrillers for me until a few years ago. Then I saw the light! Thank goodness! Rescued by erotica, BDSM and ménage a trois, romantic suspense, contemporary and paranormal romance! Wait a minute here. I still get my mystery and action thriller fix from romantic suspense stories and my fantasy fix from the paranormal romance genre. But I have also “spiced” things up a bit in my old age by adding erotica, BDSM and ménage stories to the mix. Yay me! I am now really “living the good life” with this assortment from my past to the present. And I have authors Jean Johnson and Robin D. Owens to thank for my romance transformation. Johnson’s Sons of Destiny series and Owen’s Celta series, fantasy love stories, opened my eyes once again to pure romance. Now. Hello Sassy Seven authors(Love so many of their books, although Desiree Holt’s Phoenix Agency series and Allie’s Botticelli Girls are my favorites), Kallypso Masters (Rescue Me series), Cherise Sinclair (Masters of the Shadowlands), Shayla Black(my introduction to BDSM in her first Wicked Lovers series book, Wicked Ties (I love you Jack Cole! You can tie me up anytime!), Sophie Oak (Nights in Bliss), Maya Banks (Sweet series), Lorelei James (Rough Riders) and AB McKinley (Kilted Desire series). Pooh! The list goes on and on. Too many “auto-buy” authors to mention here. What makes all these favorite authors stand out for me is their consistent release of stories with smokin’ hot heroes and sexy heroines. I know I’ve got a great read going when I get so involved with the characters that I don’t want to see the story end. But the story does end and as long as the ending is a HEA then I can let go. But thank goodness they always leave me begging for more. Write faster ladies and Scottish gent. Write faster. In the meantime, while I am waiting to read more hot and sexy books from my favorite authors, I want to thank Princess Allie for providing such wonderful “waiting for the next book” distractions in the form of her Royal Guards. I have the privilege of “cuddling” those hot sexy hunks whenever I want to. And who wouldn’t want to? Catch ya later! The Royal Guards just offered to read me a “bedtime” story. Time to “cuddle.”

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Romance & I

Now I bet you all think I’m going to tell you about my bowchicicawowow life. Right? Well you’re wrong lol. I’m going to tell you about my relationship with Romance books. The good. The bad. What authors I love and why, and the ones that hate and will never read again. My love of reading began very early, before I was a teenager. I loved all the normal girlie books; Sweet Valley High and such. Then I moved on to the scary, with no in between. I loved John Saul and Stephen King. And then life happened. School. University. A baby and a career. By the time I was in my mid 20’s I was married with kids and was lucky enough to be a stay at home mom with my second child. And then life threw me a curve. My baby started kindergarten. I found myself sitting outside his school crying for hours. On the second day I dropped him off I took my hubby’s advice and found something to do for the 7hrs and 10min he was at school. I took myself to the only bookstore in town and met a dear friend. She looked at me and gasped. “What happened?” She asked. With my swollen face and blotchy eyes, I must’ve looked like I felt. Awful. Then she pointed me to the “Romance” section and recommended I read what she called “A light read.” The book she handed me was by Diana Palmer and was called Carrera’s Bride. By the time I picked my baby up, I had finished the book. And she was right. It took my mind off of the fact that my baby was at school for 7hrs and 10Min. But then I had another problem…What was I going to do the next day? It was going to be Wednesday and I had 3 days left to get through. My hubby suggested I go buy a few more lol. That’s when my addiction began and hasn’t stopped since. But the types of books I loved didn’t necessarily change from straight “Romance”. It evolved. I still love ANYTHING DIANA PALMER (don’t judge me). But then my dealer…aka…Suzy…introduced me to Lora Leigh. I laughed when I read the back of the book called Loving Lies. It had a warning label that read “Must be 17 or older”. That’s when I fell in love with erotic romance. From there I graduated to paranormal romance, historical romance, and Diana Palmer hehehe. Once I found an author I loved I had to have every book she had written, even if I had to order them, or go to ebay and buy them. Several years later my addiction hadn’t waned, it seemed to get worse as I was reading a book a day that cost anywhere from $7.99-$24.99. And then I heard about conferences that authors had for us avid readers. How did I hear about this wonderful event that I was sure was created just for me you ask (and if you didn’t then I’m still going to tell you anyway) I had joined Lora Leigh’s mailing list. I opened this pamphlet that was inviting ME (snicker) to her event RAW. I did what any addict would do and invited my dealer to go with me. What? She sells books for heaven’s sake. I wasn’t corrupting her. That was the first time I got to actually see the people who had saved my sanity and child from home-schooling. I seriously had “fan girl” moments when I first spied Lora Leigh. By the time the book signing occurred on Sunday, my squealing had calmed to a low squeak and small jittery bounce. I had brought several books from home to have signed by a couple authors who were there, plus bought a huge stack at the bookstore they provided. That’s when I found my first author I will never read again. You heard me right. I actually loved this author. Bought every book she had written, even backlist ones. Why did I decide I’d never buy another book from this woman? It’s simple really…She was a first class beotch. She acted like it was a chore to be there and sign our books. She didn’t want to discuss anything with us. Basically you waited in line, anticipating the moment you can get up there and explain which book or series of hers is your favorite. And then she looks at you with disdain. Gives you an eye-roll and scribbles her signature on your treasured book that you had brought all the way from home. That was over 6 years ago, and I’ve never bought another book of hers. Even though she had a series I loved. I can honestly say there have only been 2 authors I’ve met who were not nice. One was mentioned above and the other was a lady I had never read, but did win one of her books and thought to have her sign it. Walking up to the table she sat behind with the book in hand, only to have her tell me she wouldn’t sign because I didn’t buy it. Yep! You guessed it. She was now the beotch #2 that I would never read. I tried giving the book away, but nobody wanted it lol. Of course the first author is still a really good writer (I assume) and the second I haven’t really heard much about. So I’m sure they are not aware I don’t read them, but I can guarantee I’ve told all my friends about both experiences. And I’m pretty sure none of my friends read either author either. The best thing that came out of that conference though was meeting other women who share a love for all things romance. At Lora leigh’s RAW I met a group of ladies who we now call ourselves “RAW Bitches”. Each of us was given a bitch name and by the next conference had shirts made with our bitch name on the front and the saying I’m famous for using “Bless Their Hearts”. After I had blessed a few unfortunate souls, and had to explain to the women what it meant, they all decided it would be our motto hehehe… Since that first conference I’ve attended at least one a year, meeting up with my bitch friends, and meeting new authors and fellow readers. Many of each, I can now call really good friends. As a whole almost every author I have had the pleasure to meet has been wonderful. There have been writers that I’ve met who I had never read, but because they were so awesome, I picked up their book and usually add them to my must buy list. The list of authors I love have grown to mammoth size, but I wouldn’t trade my addiction. Reading Romance books, from erotic, paranormal, historical, western and anything in-between as long as it’s got an HEA (happily ever after) I will read it. Books saved my sanity and gave me comfort when I was going through chemo. The reason I love Romance books is because it’s an escape from everyday life. I don’t want to read a book that tells about real life where people are miserable and face death. I know life is not all sunshine and rainbows. Hello I’m a woman that has been alive for 30+ years (not saying 40) and from my own life experience I know that reality isn’t always good. But I can open a book, or now an ereader, and always know at the end, I’ll have my happily ever after. With larger than life men who are rich and wonderful and think the heroine is the best thing since sliced bread even if they aren’t perfect woman. Since I’m far from perfect, I love to read about women who might have flaws, but can still attract the most gorgeous and well endowed men in the world. And sometimes said woman actually attracts more than one man, creating a ménage, and all three have an HEA at the end. You may have noticed I wrote “well endowed” above…That’s because every good romance book has the hero or heroes who are sporting more than 8” in their pants lmao. I’m a woman who has been married to a man a few years my junior (my 18yr old daughter says I’m a puma since he’s not 10 years younger) for over 15 years. My hubby is a wonderful man and makes me very happy. He is in no way inferior to the heroes in my books and I believe he enjoys my books almost as much as I. Not that he has ever read one, but he gets the benefit of me after I’ve read one of my books. He calls it “lady porn” and I’m okay with that. Before I got an ereader he would tell people that he could open any book that I read and within three turns of pages he would find a sex scene. And yes he could. My love of reading romance has grown and changed over the years. I go through stages where I like to read a certain genre, buying anything with shifters, or vampires, or cowboys. But the element that never changes is the HEA. I don’t like to read a book that is all about SEX. I have to have a plot and story to go with the SEX. I also love suspense in my books, something that keeps me on the edge of my seat. And I love series. This gives me my favorite author fix and lets me visit a world the author created again and again. I have favorite books that I have read and re-read several times. And every year that list gets longer and longer. But if I ever met that author and she wasn’t a nice person, I would throw that and every other book she has written away. Never to be bought again. I understand authors are real people and have good days and bad. But if I have flown hundreds of miles, paid hundreds of dollars, and taken the time to come and meet them, I expect them to be nice and cordial. They don’t have to gush and tell me thanks a thousand times. Just be polite and accept the adoration that is their due, but not expect the adoration as their due. Luckily I’ve only encountered that a couple times. Most of the authors I’ve met have been more than friendly. They seemed to truly enjoy meeting us readers and wanted to sit and talk about the books that we all love. Had I not attended the conferences and got the chance to meet some of these wonderful ladies, I may never have found their books and fell in love with their writing. The main reason I read Romance in all its many genres is because they all have one key element guaranteed that real life doesn’t…A happily ever after. I don’t expect an author to kiss my butt when I meet them, just be nice and happy to be there. I know if I was in their shoes, and hopefully I someday will be, I will be more than happy to sign a book. Things I hate in books: I hate too much description. I do not need to know what color the roses are that climb the fence in the neighbors’ yard and how the vines wrap around the railing three times thanks to the elderly gardener who works diligently as he stops to inhale the fragrant blooms. If you are trying to tell me there is privacy thanks to the fence, then keep it short and sweet. I hate when there are sooo many mistakes like the hero arriving on a Harley motorcycle and leaving shortly thereafter as he climbs into his hummer. I also hate when read a series and then all the sudden after several books into it all the scenes sound alike. Basically I’m pretty easy to please. As a writer just be nice. Make the hero bigger than life, rich and well endowed. Don’t shove descriptions down my throat. Don’t continually tell me what the people look like. I don’t need to be told a dozen times that the hero has a square chin, or the heroin is perfect or imperfect. Once or twice gives the idea, and I can picture it in my mind. And finally, give me my HEA… Michelle Boone