Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wednesday Wonder Writer - Dakota Rebel

Good morning everyone! I'm thrilled to have another of my original Wonder Writers, Dakota Rebel, on the blog. Dakota last visited us in February of 2008. A lot can change in two years so I'm excited to see what she's up to now.



Dakota, author’s lives intrigue readers and other writers. Tell me about your typical daily schedule.

My schedule is wonky and about as non-intriguing as you can get. I have a day job, so M-F I get up at Early O’Clock and get the Jr. ready for school. When her bus leaves I head off to the day job until 5pm. I get home and start dinner while Jr. goes to Karate. We have dinner and sit down as a family to watch Jeopardy. I usually answer emails and check FaceBook until 9pm when I drop into bed exhausted.

What’s your writing style? Slow and steady? Quick and prolific? All over the place?

I am the definition of all over the place. With the above schedule you’ll have to have noticed I didn’t mention when I write. Well lately, I haven’t been doing a whole lot of it. I usually try to squeeze some writing time on the weekends in which I am a flurry of word count trying to create books as quickly as possible while trying to keep them from sucking hard core. In the bad way.

What are you working on now?

Technically I am working on the 3rd installment of the Lost and Found series. It is titled Clandestine and is about the forbidden relationship between Trevor and a new arrival. It is a M/M again and I’m hoping it goes smoothly. (I say technically because I haven’t actually started it yet. But it is next on the to be written list.)

What’s your favorite genre to write?

M/M has definitely caught my imagination lately. I just adore the stories I can create between two strong, bull-headed men.

I find a lot of authors like to read outside their chosen genre. What do you like to read?

I love horror novels and non-erotic romance. My shelves are covered in tattered Stephen King books and loved-to-destruction copies of Laurell K Hamilton books. (Anita Blake only, thank you.) I am not a huge fan of YA, but I do love me some Harry Potter. I still re-read the whole series every year.

Do you have a favorite author or someone you look up to in the industry?

I have so many. Alison Tyler and Sommer Marsden were the two women who made me want to write erotica. But Stephen King made me want to write in general. I have so many friends who have pushed, pulled, and dragged me to my computer when I was down and I wouldn’t have survived the last two years without them. Brynn, Bronwyn, Mia, Carol…you’ve been so inspirational and supportive. I love you guys.

You’ve told us your writing story before, but tell us about what you’ve learned since you were first published.

I have learned to be particular. Not every plot idea has a story behind it. Write the ones that nag at you to be written. If you have an idea and it doesn’t bite your ass and make you sit down and start typing, you will not love the finished product. For me. I know there are people who can struggle through a book and end up with something fantastic. But I can’t do that. I know which stories I should have left alone, and I just know that my readers can too.

How many books have you had published and for whom?

Is it bad that I had to go and check? I’ve had 7 single titles and 3 anthologies printed by Total E Bound and 3 books with Resplendence Publishing. So…13 total titles.

What’s your latest release? Can you tell us about the book and how you got the idea?

My latest release is Wolf in Men’s Clothing. It is part of the Not Quite Wicked series that I was honored to be a part of with Mia Watts, Brynn Paulin, and Bronwyn Green. The premise of the series is that perhaps the villains of fairy tales were not quite as wicked as they were perceived in the original tellings.

Wolf in Men’s Clothing is a M/M version of Little Red Riding Hood. It was really fun to write. This was one of those ideas that grabbed me and wouldn’t let go until the story was done.

Where’s your favorite place to write?

I have a fantastic office. When we bought our house I had the back room painted black and white and applied horror movie border, and all of my book covers are framed in red and hanging on the wall. I have a beautiful desk. It is glass with the word ‘love’ etched in it in many different languages. I love my office. But I don’t know if I’ve written a single word in there.

My favorite place to write is on the couch, in my Snuggie (leopard print of course) next to my husband while he watches sports on TV.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

I work, check email, read books and hang out with my family. It also seems like I grocery shop every day. How is that possible? We are a family of 3 (and a half I suppose). We can’t possibly go through as many groceries as it seems like we do. Please tell me I am not alone in this!

Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers?

I would like to share this little tidbit of information that Bronwyn Green shared with me a couple of weeks ago. Jason Earles, who plays Jackson on Hannah Montana…is a 32 year old man. I think people need to know this information. He is a strange man/child and it freaked me out. Still does. So I feel it is my duty to tell others.

Last questions…
Coke or Pepsi? Iced Tea with lots of ice.

Bronte or Austen? Stoker. (Sorry, I’m really not big on too many classics. I know that makes me a horrible person, but I’m willing to accept that.)

Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Trek. When I was younger I was either going to be a writer, an actress or have Data’s android babies. I am a Trekkie all the way.

Team Edward or Team Jacob? Edward. I have to go with the vampires. Besides, I have loved Rob since he played Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter. I can overlook a few sparkles.

McDonalds or Burger King? Both? And can I throw in Wendys too? What? I’m pregnant, I am SO allowed to indulge right now.

Thanks for being here Dakota! It was a joy as always and congrats on the upcoming baby!!! Readers, here's where you can find Ms. Dakota Rebel:

http://dakotarebel.blogspot.com/

http://www.dakotarebel.com/

~~Brynn

Friday, January 22, 2010

Pants On the Ground

I have to admit, I'm a fan. Well done, General. But today I got this. Maybe this explains things...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wednesday Wonder Writer - Cindy Spencer Pape

Hey everyone! It's Wednesday Wonder Writer day and today I have Super Cindy Spencer Pape joining me on the blog. Now I've never seen her in a cape--I have seen her in wings--but I'm sure after reading her interview, you'll agree with me that she should be classified as a super heroine. Without further ado...the interview:

Cindy, author’s lives intrigue readers and other writers. Tell me about your typical daily schedule.

Typical? What’s that? Okay, on most weekdays, I get up early, shove the dh and youngest son out the door, check my email, blogs, etc., and go back to bed. Then I get up at 9 or 10 and write until everyone comes home again. Or…I sit at my computer, tell myself I’m writing, and do email, promo, Facebook, or anything else that doesn’t actually count as writing.

Do you have a pre-writing routine to prepare yourself to get down to business?

Nope. There’s usually Diet Coke at hand and some kind of music. That’s about it.

What’s your writing style? Slow and steady? Quick and prolific? All over the place?

All over the place, absolutely. All depends on life, the way the book(s) is(are) going, and a zillion other variables.

What are you working on now?

Too many things—though this is normal for me. 1) Steampunk/Gaslight Fantasy novel…no idea where this one is going yet. 2) Eagle’s Redemption: part of a trilogy for Ellora’s Cave with Regina Carlysle and Desiree Holt, that SHOULD be done by the time this interview is posted. 3) Second book in my historical series for EC 4) Second book in my Detroit Fae series for Carina Press 5) Pride of the Panther, book 3 in my Guardians series for TEB.

For those who don’t recognize the term, can you explain what Steampunk is?

Steampunk is a fun up and coming genre, based on the premise that computers were invented in the 1850s, hence in the age of steam power rather than electricity. You get the feel of Victoriana, but with fun toys like robots and zeppelins and anything else you can imagine mixing in.

You have a lot of books in the works. Generally, how many do you usually have out per year?

It varies a lot depending on length. In the last couple years, it’s averaged about 10-12.

What’s your favorite genre to write?

Mainly paranormal, though I’m having a lot of fun with historical right now…also intrigued by combining the two.

I find a lot of authors like to read outside their chosen genre. What do you like to read?

In addition to my romance addiction, I read some mystery and fantasy, and a wee bit of SF [sci-fi]. Within romance, I like paranormal, historical, and romantic suspense. Mostly HOT, but occasionally not so much.

Do you have a favorite author or someone you look up to in the industry?

Many.

Tell me your writing story…when did you decide this was what you want to do? How long did it take you to get “the call”? When were you first published? Etc.

Huh. Hard to say. Somewhere in the 90s I was bored and decided to make a serious stab at writing a novel. In 2000 I finished, and submitted said (really horrible) novel, and in 2001, I joined RWA, which is about when I decided to really consider myself an aspiring author. First actual sale didn’t come until 2006, but then I sold to three different publishers within three months, so it’s been pretty much full-steam-ahead since then.

What did you do/how did you react when you made your first sale? Which publisher was the first to accept your work?

My first sale was to the now-defunct Triskelion Publishing. I screamed when I read the email. My kids came running upstairs to see what was wrong. My husband, who was on a business call at the time, said to his contact, “Well, I’m guessing my wife just sold a book.”

How many books have you had published and for whom?

You asked, remember that: Sales so far = 32
Wild Rose Press: 7 (5 western, 1 modern paranormal, 1 historical paranormal)
Resplendence Publishing: 1 (erotic romance short story in an anthology)
Total-E-Bound: 4 (erotic paranormal, including 1 m/m by my alter-ego, Cian Fey)
Cerridwen Press: 1 (paranormal)
Ellora’s Cave: 17 plus 1 pending release. (15 paranormal erotic romances, two erotic historical romances)
Carina Press: 1 paranormal romance, pending launch date this summer

What’s your latest release? Can you tell us about the book and how you got the idea?

At the time of this posting, I **think** my newest release should be “Awakening Augusta,” the first of a historical erotic romance series for Ellora’s Cave. How did I get the idea? I honestly have no idea. I just like to play with different genres and wanted to have some historical fun. [On side note, Cindy found out Tuesday that her book Dani's Demons will be released February 5 from Ellora's Cave.]

Blurb: Regency Scotland can be a lonely place, but Augusta MacLeish has four mischievous younger siblings for company—now if she only had money to feed them! Colin Fordyce has recently inherited an earldom, along with five wards in a remote Scottish castle. When he travels up there, he discovers his predecessor was skimming their funds. He also learns the oldest Miss MacLeish is absolutely stunning. A knock to his head leaves him seeing two of the buxom beauty, just as one kiss from her tempting lips leaves him longing for more. A night spent together forces Colin and Augusta to marry, leaving them all the opportunity in the world to explore the sexual hunger between them. Colin delights in teaching Augusta all the pleasures of the flesh, awakening the wanton lover beneath her ladylike veneer. From Scotland to London, the flames burning between them refuse to be doused, and oh how they will set the Ton on fire.

What’s your writing space like?


There is no such thing in my house. Mostly I write at the kitchen table, occasionally on the couch or in the summer, on the back deck, if I can get the umbrella to shade the screen just right.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

Read. Hang out with other writers as much as possible. Play silly games online and pretend I’m working.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers?

I’m really excited about the Carina Press launch later this summer and to have been one of the very first authors they acquired. I’ve been trying to find just the right home for my series set in Detroit for quite a long time.

Last questions…

Coke or Pepsi? Diet Coke, preferably with lime. LOTS of Diet Coke.

Bronte or Austen? Charlotte Bronte, yes, Emily Bronte, no. Jane Austen, BIG yes.

Star Trek or Star Wars? Which series or episodes? Liked Next Gen okay, didn’t and DS-9, not so much the other series. Star Wars the originals, yes. The new ones…ewwwwwww!

Team Edward or Team Jacob? Say what? Oh. That Twilight thing. Shudder.

McDonalds or Burger King? Mickey’s still has the best French fries. Sigh. Shouldn’t do either.

Where can readers find you?

Website: http://www.cindyspencerpape.com
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/cindyspencerpape
Newsletter Group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/cspapenewsgroup/
Blog: http://cindyspencerpape.blogspot.com/

Monday, January 18, 2010

Almost Normal

Things are getting back to normal today. I finally finished the book I've been kavetching about. It turned out great! I'm progressing on the challenge as well. I'm at 16, 716 of 40, 000 with 26 days to go. This week, I'll be heavy into editing for my job, however, so my pace will slow a bit.

Speaking of my job... A funny thing happened on my way to quitting. I decided not to. I'm staying on part time at the old job and working part time at the new job. I'm looking forward to it all actually.

I'd like to thank everyone for the healing thoughts and prayers for my husband after his surgery for the ruptured appendix a week and a half ago. I'm calling him the miracle man. He's healed so quickly that he's gone back to work on light duty this week. Next week, He'll be back to full time! It really is amazing. It's actually good too. The nature of his job and mine, leaves us with no insurance so the bills should be a ton of fun. Oh well, as my husband says, "It's only money. We make it every day." Gotta love that man.

Have a remarkable day!
~~Brynn

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Friday, January 15, 2010

I like flat rate too...

Seriously Inspired. Good job USPS. :-)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Next Week!


Hi everyone! Heart of Ice is due out next week! I'm so excited for this book. Here's the blurb:

Kai is perfectly unhappy with his life. Cast into a role as shop boy and forced into marriage to save his family, he sees nothing good in his future. In fact, his betrothed, Gerda, seems to hate everything he enjoys. Especially winter and his attraction to dominating his partners. His prospects look grim…until the Snow Queen arrives.

Wyn has spent her life alone, living vicariously through those who love winter. When she learns of Kai’s predicament, she knows she must save him. If only she could save herself. She craves his dominance, but there’s one tiny thing standing in their way. No human can touch her without experiencing chilly agony. And that might bring any relationship to an icy death.

Challenge update: I'm now at 7718 of 40K. I have 31 days to go and at my current pace I should end at about 54K (over the count! Yay!)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Wednesday Wonder Writer - Regina Carlysle

Hi everyone! Before I get started with today's awesome interview, I want to update you on my challenge progress. As I mentioned, I'm participating in a winter novel writing challenge to write 40K between Jan 9 and Feb 13. So far I'm on track and as of yesterday have completed 5705 words toward the goal.

Okay, back to the regularly scheduled interview. I'm very happy to have the lovely Regina Carlysle with us today. I'm sure you'll enjoy her as much as I do!!!

Regina, author’s lives intrigue readers and other writers. Tell me about your typical daily schedule.

Ha. Nothing all that ‘intriguing’, I promise. I roll out of bed whenever I damn well please because I’m an empty nester now. Moms with kids at home? Please don’t come huntin’ for me! Believe me, your time will come and you’ll enjoy sleeping in as much as I do. Usually I’m up between 8 and 9, I get coffee, write a bleary blog and answer email. By ten or so, I’m wide awake and I’ll write as long as possible, taking a few breaks for household stuff and maybe lunch. If I’m lucky and the muse is active I might write at night, but I usually don’t. I tend to relax a bit with the hubster and then I’ll retire to the computer to work on promotion.

Do you have a pre-writing routine to prepare yourself to get down to business?

Sort of. Usually, I jot down lots of notes on basic things or I’ll find a quiet place to just relax and ‘think’ about the story. I’m pretty much a pantser so it’s more of a mental thing than something meticulous and planned out.

What’s your writing style? Slow and steady? Quick and prolific? All over the place?

I’m kind of all over the place really. With some stories, it’s like pulling teeth to get the thing finished and with others, they fly. Those stories that seem to fly on their own are some of my best stories, I think. At the moment, I tend to see around six stories per year released but I hope to improve on that number this year.

What are you working on now?

Currently I’m hammering out a story for EC’s Cougar Challenge series and I hope to finish in a few weeks. This one is called Drilled about a 40-something woman who returns to her Texas hometown after a painful divorce and hooks up with a 30-something man who is drilling for oil on her property. Then I will be writing the third book in a series I’m doing with Desiree Holt and Cindy Spencer Pape. This is a series about Texas siblings. After that I plan to write the fifth book in my High Plains Shifters series (EC) and another Jaguar shifter ménage, also for EC. I’ve also been tossing around ideas with Ciana Stone and Desiree Holt for another contemporary Texas-themed series.

What’s your favourite genre to write?

I never thought I’d say this but paranormal. I adore shifters, love writing them.

I find a lot of authors like to read outside their chosen genre. What do you like to read?

I love funny stuff. Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Sandra Hill write drop dead funny books and I love to laugh so they are always an auto buy for me. I love historicals and paranormal, of course, but only when I’m not currently writing one.

Do you have a favorite author or someone you look up to in the industry?

Yes. Ha. I have so so many talented friends who support me as I support them and I wouldn’t dare name names for fear of leaving someone out. They, however, know who they are and that I love them.

Tell me your writing story…when did you decide this was what you want to do? How long did it take you to get “the call”? When were you first published? Etc.
I’ve always written something. Angsty, pitiful poetry as a teen, news stories as a journalist, movie reviews. The thing was, I knew I wanted to write just didn’t know WHAT. In 1992, I was bitching to my sister about a book I was reading. She gave me one of those ‘raised eyebrow’ looks and suggested I quit complaining and write something of my own. The idea of writing fiction had never occurred to me but once I made the decision, I worked steadily at it for the next 15 yrs. Back then, I wrote and researched regency since it was my favorite genre. I have several of those early books shoved under a bed at the moment. My contribution to the Writing Goddess, I think. I almost gave up but didn’t. Rejections were particularly painful in the old days and I figure I could wallpaper my office with all those nasty little letters. After one rejection after another, I continued to write but didn’t submit anything until I finally decided to give e-publishing a try. In the end, my first book came out in 2007 and I never looked back. I’m honestly proud of myself for not giving up.

How many books have you had published and for whom?

I currently have 12 ebooks and 5 print books at Ellora’s Cave; three titles at Resplendence Publishing and three books (print and ebook) at The Wild Rose Press under my Rita Thedford name.

What’s your latest release? Can you tell us about the book and how you got the idea?

My latest book is Jaguar Hunger, a shifter ménage. This is the story of a young unmated jaguar female who goes to the wilds of New Mexico to experience her first shift. She fully believes, because she doesn’t have the two mates required by her species, that she will die as she experiences uncontrollable lust and shifts into her beast unaided. Noah Littlehawk and Aaron O’Malley, unmated jaguar males, long ago decided that because of their close friendship they would together search for their mate. They own their own PI firm and have been hired to ‘watch’ a woman whom they are told is a wealthy man’s mistress. Instead they meet Violet and learn that not only is she no man’s mistress but she is an unmated female jag going into her first shift.

Don’t really know how I got the idea but I DID know I wanted to write another ménage. I’ve done a few of them and enjoying writing them so much. I tend to switch to ménage when I’m feeling a little stale in the other genres I write. So this was a good switch up for me. Maybe I was feeling the press of cold weather but I wanted to set this in the winter time and in the mountains. Loooove the mountains.

What’s your writing space like?

I work in my son’s converted bedroom. My desk sets off in a little corner and the area tends to be a little bit messy. Just like me. I have a nice entertainment center than sets behind me along one wall and it holds a shelf full of my print books and a television along with other assorted junk.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

When I’m not writing, I’m gorging on my news shows (I’m a political junkie) or watching some of my favorite television series. My current favorites are True Blood, Big Love, and Dexter. I usually choose one day each week for my ‘errand running’ when I’ll head out to the dry cleaners or the grocery store. I’m pretty much a hermit so I plan my days out very carefully.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers?
Not really. I think I’ve pretty much said it all.

Last questions…
Coke or Pepsi? Both. I can’t choose. Lately I’ve been more hooked on Diet Coke

Bronte or Austen? Austen. Without a doubt.

Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Wars. Love the whole ‘good versus evil’ theme. Han Solo is my favorite. Love him.

Team Edward or Team Jacob? Team Jacob. He’s real, earthy and he doesn’t sparkle. Don’t get the whole sparkly thing.

McDonalds or Burger King? When I’m being bad, I hit Burger King and try not to think about that goofy commercial with the creepy KING and his plastic head.

Regina, I think that king head is creepy too! Thank you so much for being here today! Readers, you can find Regina at:

Her blog: http://www.reginacarlysle.blogspot.com/
Her website: http://reginacarlysle.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/reginacarlysle

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Irony

This will be a short post today. I'm deep into the writing marathon, though my word count isn't really showing it yet. I'm at 3192 of 40K. That's not the irony...

Last week, I posted about Rocky on Monday. On Wednesday, my husband had an emergency appendectomy -- and not the easy laparoscopic kind unfortunately. Anyway, I swear to you, his surgeon was Rocky. In the seriousness of the situation, I was hard-pressed not to laugh.

Back to the books... Blood Bought is featured on the front page of FictionWise. How exciting!

Oh! One last thing! Check out the contest for the Not Quite Wicked Anthology. We're featured over at Stumbling Over Chaos. Free books are up for grabs!

Later! ~~Brynn

Monday, January 11, 2010

Theme Song - S.E.X.

Have you heard this song. I've recently gotten to like the song S.E.X. by Nickelback. I think it could be my theme as of late. "Sex is always the answer, it's never a question..."

Saturday, is day one of the Winter NANO run by my local writing group. The challenge is to write 40K between now and February 13. I think I can do it. I'll be posting updates on my blog if you want to follow along. If you want to do it too, feel free to post your progress :-)

So I'm off to write. Below are the lyrics to Nickelback's song if you want to check it out (and yes they did make up a word in here).

You know there's a dirty word,
Never gonna say it first,
No it's just a thought that never crosses my mind.
Maybe in the parking lot,
Better bring your friend along,
Better rock together than just one at a time.

S is for the simplety.
E is for the ecstasy.
X is just to mark the spot,
Because that's the one you really want.
(Yes!) Sex is always the answer, it's never a question,
'Coz the answer's yes, oh the answers (Yes)
Not just a suggestion, if you ask a question,
Then it's always yes. Yeeeah!

I'm loving what you wanna wear,
I wonder what's up under there?
Wonder if I'll ever have it under my tongue?
I'll love to try to set you free,
I love you all over me.
Love hearin' the sound you make the second you're done.

S is for the simplety.
E is for the ecstasy.
X is just to mark the spot,
Because that's the one you really want.
(Yes!) Sex is always the answer, it's never a question,
'Coz the answer's yes, oh the answers (Yes).
Not just a suggestion, if you ask a question,
Then it's always yes. Yeeeah! (YES)
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.

S is for the simplety.
E is for the ecstasy.
X is just to mark the spot,
Because that's the one you really want.
(Yes!) Sex is always the answer, it's never a question,
'Coz the answer's yes, oh the answer's (Yes).
Not just a suggestion, if you ask a question,
Then it's always yes. Yeeeah! (YES)
(Yes!) Sex is always the answer, it's never a question,
'Coz the answer's yes, oh the answer's (Yes).
Not just a suggestion, if you ask a question,
Then it's always yes. Yeeeah! (YES)
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
Yeeeeeeeah, yeeeah, yeah.
YES!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Friday, January 8, 2010

The “Why” Chromosome - Demystifying Guys

This is a repost of my article on the Total-e-bound blog, October 2007.

Men claim they’ll never understand women, but can we really understand them? Today, I’ll attempt to breach some of the barriers that divide men and women and just have us asking “Why???”

But as Inigo Montoya said in Princess Bride, “There is too much. Let me sum up.”
When I asked my friends what they’d want to know if they could ask a man anything, the answers ranged from “Why doesn’t he talk?” to several versions of “What does it feel like?” and I wondered… what does it feel like? So I asked a few of my guy friends. Their answer: Good.

That is not helpful. So…

The Non-Talker

In my quest to demystify men, I set out to answer these questions. First on the list “Why doesn’t he talk?”

27% of men say that they fight with their significant other over the fact they don’t share their feelings and 65% of men don’t want their partners to ask more questions of them. Non-talkers? Ya think?

As women, we tend to assume if our guy isn’t talking, there must be a problem. That’s not always true. Actually, it’s usually not true. Quite often, if men aren’t talking, they’re happy. It’s a simple as that. Don’t rock the boat. Go with it. But if you don’t believe me, ask him. Be specific and be direct. Beating around the bush won’t get the job done. As several men I spoke with said, subtly doesn’t work. Whether that receptor isn’t working or our guy has turned it off doesn’t matter. It’s all in your method. Be blunt.

Of course, here’s something to consider. Say the word feelings to a man and its like clipping your toenails during a striptease, says David Zinczenko in his book Men, Love, and Sex: The Complete User’s Guide for Women. They don’t like it. Men often feel intimidated about expressing their feelings because they perceive women to have that language down while they’re still babbling like toddlers.

David goes on to say, “If you want us to answer questions about what we're feeling, then stop asking about how we're feeling.” Often men see it as weakness to express how their feeling. Despite my title, it’s not chromosomal. It’s socialized. Men are told to “suck it up” and “be a man”. As a boy, talking about how he felt would have been a good way to get picked on, or worse, beat up. By the time, they get to us, holding in their emotions is ingrained.

Keeping this in mind, don’t push the issue. This is the fastest way to shove your guy into a corner and get him to clam up. Instead, watch how he behaves. Continue to be open about your feelings. The more you show you’re comfortable expressing yourself, the more he'll do the same.

So if he doesn’t talk, sometimes we have to rely on…

Male Body Language

You can often get a clue to how your guy is feeling inside by his behavior. If he loves you, he may very well try to show you without actually saying it. Learning his non-verbal language will help you to know how open he is to conversations, especially if you plan to use the f-word— feelings not the other one. Once you can intuitively interpret the signs, you can use them to improve communication between the two of you. Of course, if you’re peckish like me, you might use them to purposely annoy him.

So here are a few of the “must know” signals found in The Complete Idiots Guide to Pleasing Your Man by Eve Salinger:

If he smooths his hair or clothing, he wants you to notice he’s attractive. If he hooks his thumbs in his belt while facing you, he wants you to notice he’s virile. His hands on his hips are an indicator that he’s feeling big and strong, while fiddling with his jacket buttons indicates he’s nervous. Crossing his arms over his chest shows defensiveness. When he leans toward you or points his feet in your direction, he’s interested in what you’re saying. However, if he sits with his face toward you, but his body facing away, he’s not comfortable. And if he leans away, you might want to wait until later to talk because he’s completely unreceptive.

If he holds your gaze, he’s definitely interested in you. This is important to take note of since, men tend to display less warmth and facial expression than woman. This doesn’t mean that a guy is uninterested in what you’re saying. Less warmth, not no warmth. If he’s scowling at you, beware.

So if a guy won’t talk and you have to rely on non-verbal communication, what does intimacy, particularly sexual intimacy mean to men?

What Sexual Intimacy Means to Men

Obviously, men have different ideas about sex and intimacy than woman do. Anyone who’s spent five minutes with the “why” chromosome knows that. There’s a stereotype that men are sex-crazed, ego-centric and completely horny—and there are those who fit the bill, but most men are far more complicated than that. You didn’t want to hear that, did you? According to Intimacy by Dr. Paul Coleman, sex and intimacy are closely related for men. Many woman fail to comprehend this. A guy’s deep need for sex is often just a need for closeness. Since men are not big talkers, this is often a way to communicate their love or caring to the important woman in their life. Sex is the easiest way for a man to feel closeness on an acute level. Another non-verbal communication. This intimacy leads to deeper intimacy.

To a man, sex is acceptance. ‘Not now’, even for the best reasons, is often construed as a rejection. The more he feels rejected, the more he may try to press for sex. Because he feels insecure. He needs reassurance that he’s desirable. He’s not a raving sex maniac.

What does it feel like?

Okay, I can’t leave out this most asked question. What does it feel like? Heads up ladies, it doesn’t matter what hundreds of romance novels (including mine) have said. According to the guy panel, the groin does not “tighten”. Apparently, there’s a lot of pressure. There’s a definite sensation of pooling, then thickening. It’s all good. But no one can really explain what it feels like. I didn’t think describing an erection would be so tough. It’s like describing the color red. It’s…well, it’s red. An erection, in the same way, feels like an erection. I resorted to The Penis Dialogues by Gabriel Constans. Here are a few descriptions:

“It’s almost painful. Pleasure is only a part of it. It’s painful pleasure. It’s a focusing and gathering, as though the rest of my body is draining. I need to bring attention to it. When it receives attention pleasure occurs. “

“It’s like water building up behind a dam, with pressure that needs to be released.”

“An erection takes my head to the head of my penis. All my thoughts are there. It’s a coalescing of everything in one spot.”

“An erection feels like a fifteen minute sneeze. It starts by feeling really warm and exciting throughout my whole body, with a focus on my groin. An orgasm feels the top blowing off of everything.”

Hmmm…just as I suspected. I figured explaining what sex feels like would be far easier. Since so many people asked, I was on a mission and unwilling to go with “it feels like hot apple pie”. It seems like that would burn.

Mission or not, I forgot for a moment that men don’t like to talk.

Warm and wet are the only clear answers. Not tight. Not like a glove. Not “like the passage to heaven”. Just hot and warm. I guess that’s where the pie description comes from. Come on … I have a pile of sex books, the whole world wide web, the guy panel and I couldn’t get better than that? The guys have some talking to do and I have an opportunity to ply them with alcohol this weekend. Ladies, I’ll get back to you on this one because it’s time for Brynn to leave the building, but before I go…what does it feel like for the “poisons” to leave the building. I’ll leave it to Greg to describe.

“Ejaculation creates this unbelievable sensation of something rushing from your body—you can actually feel liquid channelling down through your pipes. The best sex feels like mild electric shocks that begin at my groin then course through my body.”

Mmmm. Yummy.

See you next time ~ Brynn

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Flashback - Grade School

Dear God! Here are some members of the witness protection program. These are indeed the uniforms we wore (sans first communion veils) at the Catholic school I attended. Attractive, huh?


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wednesday Wonder Writer - Fran Lee

Today, I'm privileged to have the super cool Fran Lee visiting my blog. Since I met Fran last year, I've been astounded by her boundless energy and productivity as well as her outlook on life. I'm thrilled to have her here today. So without further ado, the questions:

Fran, author’s lives intrigue readers and other writers. Tell me about your typical daily schedule.

Um…schedule? Could you spell that, please? I don’t think I have one. LOL. I wake up. I wander around like a lost soul until I decide whether I need a drink of ice water or a bowl of cereal. Once I sort that out, I turn on my computer. I read the hundred or so e-mails that came in overnight. I get sidetracked by the puppy needing to go out…NOW! I sit back down at the computer and stare at the screen blankly until I figure out what I was doing. Oh, yeah…e-mail.

Once I get my mind working, I look at my little reminder list…Oh, yeah. Work on wip. As you can see, my “schedule” is erratic at best. I figure if I get up and my name isn’t in the obits for the day, I’m good to go.

Do you have a pre-writing routine to prepare yourself to get down to business?

Nope. I just sit down and open up a word.doc file and type in “Novel” for the title, then I start typing. Whatever comes to mind. Whatever sexual fantasy happens to be running through my head at the moment. Um…I think I’ll write about a Chihuahua shifter today. Nope. Too many women have fantasies about Chihuahuas. Better make that a leopard shifter.

You write whatever comes to mind. Does that mean you don’t plot?

I never plot. I sit down and start to write. After the first couple of paragraphs, my muse slaps me upside the head and I’m off. However, I often end up going back and revising some of the first couple of paragraphs, because I thought of something better to start off with. LOL!

What’s your writing style? Slow and steady? Quick and prolific? All over the place?

Wow…that sounds like my sex style. All of the above. Actually, I have no style. I get an inspiration, and I write until I fall asleep at the keyboard. It simply flows. Since I have utterly no recollection of the process once it’s finished, it’s impossible to answer that question. I do know one thing…the title comes to me as I write. A few words. A disjointed thought. A sentence catches my eye. Bingo! Title!

How many hours a day would you “guesstimate” you write?

On the days that I actually write? Not the days I sit down and piddle around with my computer and play games and do e-mail? Hmmm…let’s just say that when I started Hallie’s Cats, I sat down and didn’t move until I was finished. I worked up Double Your Pleasure (upcoming from EC) in roughly 32 hours over a three day period, so I think it would be about 10-12 hours a day. I actually act out the book in my head and see if it works. If it leaves me hot and breathless, I write it down. When I put my mind to it, I can write up to 30 pages a day with self-edits.

What are you working on now?

Three things. I am working on a series with other writers that is called the Cougar Challenge. I am working on a sequel to my shifter novella, Hallie’s Cats. After getting multiple requests to give the beta leopard shifter brother in Cats his own story and mate, I decided it might be fun. I just subbed a novella to my editor and am waiting for acceptance or total…sob…rejection. Actually, she wants it, but I had to figure out what I wanted to do with it. I decided to lengthen it a bit and add some additional meat. It’s a hot m/f/m ménage.

What’s your favorite genre to write?

Hot. Oh, you mean shifter, paranormal, etc? Well, I’ve enjoyed writing every single book and novella, no matter what the genre. Sometimes I incorporate several genres into one book. In Out of Her Dreams, it was supposedly a straight erotic m/f romance, but there was a dab of paranormal tossed in there that drove one reviewer to say “this situation with David being exactly like the hero of her books smacks of paranormal, but it wasn’t totally explained”. Oh, yeah…it was explained. Earlier in the book, and later in the book. LOL!

Do you have a particular place or way you get inspiration?

I float around in limbo for an hour playing games on my computer. I get a nudge to see what I could do with this situation or that situation, and if the idea makes me grin and get tingly, off we go!

I find a lot of authors like to read outside their chosen genre. What do you like to read?

Over my long and venerable lifetime I have read every author from Leo Tolstoy to Barbara Cartland. I also do book reviews for St. Martin’s Press and have read some wonderful non-ero romances, as well as suspense/thrillers. I love reading Sherrilyn Kenyon and Kresley Cole, and I adore paranormal and shifters. Oh, and I love Stephenie Meyer!

When you mention Stephanie Meyer do you mean her Twilight series? What’s your take on Edward and Bella’s relationship?

A whole lot of sexual build up and a whole lot of intense emotion. Steph is a master at getting the tension up and keeping you anticipating the next surprise. If I hadn’t read the books, I would have loved the movies…unfortunately, no one can possibly put a twenty hour read into a two hour movie and have it survive the process.

Do you have a favorite author or someone you look up to in the industry?

How many can I list without being too wordy? I have a favored core of writers who are on my auto buy list. Like I mentioned above, I have several NY authors I love and buy everything they write, but I also do the same with these:
Regina Carlysle
Anny Cook
Bronwyn Green
Tessie Bradford
Brynn Paulin [Brynn says thank you :-)]
Julia Barrett
Desiree Holt
Cindy Spencer Pape
Mia Watts
Ciana Stone
Paris Brandon
Katalina Leon
April Ash
Amber Skyze
Betty Hanawa
Natalie Gray
And…Oh! Too many already? Um…sorry! I got carried away.

As far as looking up to people in the industry, I have the greatest admiration for my editors and publishers, who have made me what I am today…a crazy, wild, romance-writing fool!

Tell me your writing story…when did you decide this was what you want to do? How long did it take you to get “the call”? When were you first published? Etc.

Wow. Hard one! I actually started writing romance at fourteen, and later, in the mid to late 80’s, I pulled out a few of the teen books and rewrote them. Of course, even though my agent and I loved my hot romances, publishers just were not ready for my “style” of writing. Too hot. Too erotic. Etc. I sighed, packed them back up, and figured that maybe…someday…

Then, last year, I found Kresley Cole’s books, and thought, “Heck. Now seems to be the time!”

I subbed a novel to Ellora’s Cave. Out of Her Dreams. The editor sent it back, saying that it didn’t fit EC guidelines. Of course, not being the shrinking violet type, I instantly shot back an e-mail asking what would MAKE it the kind of book EC publishes. I listened. I laughed. “Not hot enough!” “Too long!” So it got hotter, and shorter, and I subbed it again. It got contracted. That was this time last year.

Of course, the book went through considerable edits (I cut half of the book out) and it was released June 12, 2009. I subbed another long romance, and it was rejected. Same reasons. I heated it up, but I didn’t want to cut the book in half, so I subbed to Resplendence. They took it and ran with it, and I was suddenly a multi-published author! WOW! (And I only had to cut 20k words out instead of half the book!)

The next book EC rejected for the same reasons went to Resplendence, and will be released in February 2010. After that, I wrote a number of short hot novellas, and all of them have been contracted by EC. I did write an anthology series novella for Resplendence as a group effort with several of my author pals, titled First and Ten. The anthology is titled “Carnal Reunions”. Seven books came out the same day. That was exciting!

Each e-publisher has its own guidelines and ideals, and no matter what I write, I can find it a home.

How many books have you had published and for whom?

Six so far, (with one ready to go in February, another under contract and three wips shifting in my brain.)
Four with Ellora’s Cave:
Out of Her Dreams
Hallie’s Cats
Her Own Set of Rules
Jillian’s Job

Two with Resplendence Publishing:
Dictated by Fate
First and Ten

What’s your latest release? Can you tell us about the book and how you got the idea?

Jillian’s Job was released November 25, 2009 from Ellora’s Cave. I was day dreaming about this hot rock star from the 80’s. I began wondering what life would be like for him once his music career ended, and how he would survive. Most rock stars just keep on rockin’ until they drop dead. My guy was smart and used his knowledge and talent to go places. Helping other wannabes get to be stars. And he had this proficient personal assistant who was crazy about him but didn’t dare show it because he had hired her to replace some poor girl who drooled all over him and made him feel uncomfortable. I decided that sounded like it would fly. Of course, I wrote the premise back in 1987, so I had to update it a bit. LOL!

What’s your writing space like?

Messy and comfy. My computer is in my bedroom. I have a bathroom three steps away. Nothing to interfere or interrupt. Unless my stomach starts growling in protest. Then I head for the kitchen. I drag my food back to my computer, and once a day, need it or not, I clean away the used cups and bowls. *sigh*

What do you do when you’re not writing?

Read. Play video games on my computer. Think up new ideas. Talk with my pals online. I am a couch potato again!

Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers?

Yes…I run contests on my website at http://www.franleeromance.com and I normally alert folks to my contests with a Newsletter. You can sign up for my Newsletter on my website.

I can be found on the web in a dozen places, but these are the main sites:
http://www.franleeromance.com
http://franleesromanceblog.blogspot.com
http://franleesbookreviews.blogspot.com
http://www.examiner.com/x-5288-Salt-Lake-City-Romance-Novels-Examiner

Last questions…

Coke or Pepsi? Coke

Bronte or Austen? Both

Star Trek or Star Wars? Both

Team Edward or Team Jacob? Both

McDonalds or Burger King? Both

Thanks for having me, Brynn. It’s been loads of fun! Great questions, BTW!

Thank YOU Fran for being here with us today!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Photoshop Practice

So...I've been learning Photoshop and I thought I'd share one of my practice photos today. Here it is:


Monday, January 4, 2010

Brynn's Rocky Analysis

Okay…last Thursday, I listed some of my Brynn quirks. One of them is that I like Rocky [I], II, III and sometimes IV. I’ve never actually seen V or the last one called Rocky Balboa, not Rocky VI as many people think. The last two are on my 2010 to-do list but when they came out, I couldn’t handle Rocky old or brain damaged. I needed him to be stronger. Weird, I know.

My mom asked me the other night why I like the Rocky movies. I told her I didn’t know. A lie, a total lie. I guess I’ve always been an underdog so seeing an underdog triumph is something I like. I was one of those picked on kids in school so it was always cool to be able to see past that to something else. No matter where we start we can be a success.

Taking that farther, the films show ups and downs that I think often mirror all our careers. There’s always someone else out to best us. Or we see ourselves as not as good. Or we lose our fire. For me these movies can be a touchstone, a reminder to not lose touch with who I am and that my current moment isn’t all there is.

From another angle, I was heavy into drama in high school and college. I have got to tell you, I have huge admiration for Burgess Meredith and I just love him in these movies. I’ve just watched the first three Rocky movies again and from an acting perspective the character he played, Mickey, had the best monologues in all the movies, perhaps some of the best monologues in any movie. Seriously, I wanted to do them myself. We did monologue practice in college. I soooooo would have picked some of these if I’d thought of it. His monologue in the chapel in the second movie is brilliant.

Let’s set aside that I had a tiny unexplainable crush on Sylvester Stallone when I was younger. It’s my opinion that this man is undervalued. Obviously, I’ve spent a great deal of time looking at these movies. Did you know that Stallone wrote all six of them? He also directed four of the installments, including my favorite one, Rocky II. I haven’t counted how many other movies he’s directed, but he’s written thirteen more (and written the additional dialogue for another). That alone places him in my catalogue of greats.

Finally, I adore the love story between Adrian and Rocky. It just touches me whenever I see it. He’s definitely an alpha guy, but with her you see this soft caring side. He sees past her frumpiness to the beautiful woman inside. She becomes the center of his universe. It was one of the first things that attracted me to the movies.

So there you have it. All the reasons Brynn loves Rocky.

Gonna Fly Now! ~~ Brynn

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Heart of Ice

Once upon a time…

In a land far, far away, there was a girl who lived in a ice palace high on a hill. Everyone in the land thought she was very bad. In fact, the stories say, one winter, she stole away a shop boy and took him away to her mountain fortress where he stayed until the girl he loved rescued him.

That’s one story…

Another story coming to you on January 19.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy 2010!!!

May this new year be even more successful than the last!
Wishing you all the best! ~~ Brynn