Red hot poker tips from Leaving Las Vegas! #pokergurus @AleahBarley @EntangledSus
Thursday, November 21, 2013
Monday, November 11, 2013
Sunday, November 10, 2013
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Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Check out what the reviewers are saying about Leaving Las Vegas. It's a "fun and wild ride."
About the characters:
"Glory Allen is a hoot - speaks her mind, has a heart of gold, isn't afraid of what life throws at her. Luke Tanner is hot - wealthy, sexy, and a man who is used to being in charge."
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Or head straight to the action by buying Leaving Las Vegas today!
At Amazon or Barnes & Noble!
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Monday, October 28, 2013
Monday, October 14, 2013
I write funny (I hope) contemporary romances. My first book Too Hot to Handle came out last year, and my next book Leaving Las Vegas is available for presale now.
I don't write horror, but both of my books are quick paced and suspenseful with car chases, standoffs, and explosions. So, how do I write scary?
Scary is visceral.
Scary isn't about saying that June is scared.
Scary is saying:
June quivered nervously.
Scary incorporates the senses:
The taste of bile rose in her throat. The smell of gasoline from was heavy in the air. She couldn't see much, but she could hear the killer's footsteps as he crossed the cramped garage, disturbing centuries old dust.
Scary is about what happens next. What might happen next.
Thursday, October 10, 2013
"I'm so glad what happened in Vegas didn't stay there. A sexy, fun, thrilling romp of a romance that had me alternating between a swoon and laughing out loud."
~Robin Covington, bestselling author of the Boys are Back in Town series.
Find it now at Amazon or at Barnes and Noble!
When West Virginia wild child, Glory Allen enters a private poker game with her town’s dreams at stake she loses it all. To make matters worse, she’s trapped in a car with the sexy but infuriating man who won—and accused her of cheating. Now because of him, she’s on the run from the mafia who put out a hit on the stuck-up casino magnate with the toe-curling good looks—and he isn’t even her type. So why can’t she cool the explosive chemistry between them?
She’s out of control…and she’s enough to drive Luke Tanner crazy. Yet she’s the only one willing to put her neck on the line…for him—a complete stranger she professes to hate. Now he’s in debt…to her. And it’s a debt he’s willing to work off any way she wants…on the hood of his sports car, in a waterfall—wherever she’ll have him, he’s willing to pay the price.But the stakes are raised when they return to West Virginia—helping Luke escape has put Glory and her hometown in the sites of someone who wants him dead. This time Glory decides she’s not going to end up empty-handed—it’s time for the winner to take all and she won’t stop ’til she wins his heart.
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
I haven’t taken a writing class since… ever. The closest I’ve come in the last few years is Candace Haven’s awesome Quick Draft workshop, which is more like the Spanish Inquisition then a learning experience (not in a bad way, swearsies). When I tell people I’m a published author (with Entangled Publishing, go team!) they almost always ask where I learned to write, I fall back on simple truths “I read a lot as a kid” and “I’ve always been a writer.”
However, I did do one of my favorite writing exercises ever in a classroom. Sixth grade. The Arts Impact Middle School in Columbus, Ohio (don’t hate me Michigan, I was only there for a few years!). My English teacher had everyone in class write down how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Then she pulled out a bag of bread, a jar of peanut butter, a jar of jelly, and a knife.
Most people had written things like “Take bread. Add peanut butter and jelly.” Some had gone as far as to add the knife. One kid had thought to open the bag. No one had thought to write the words “Open the peanut butter jar.”
When you’re writing a book, your plot and your characters are like two pieces of dry bread—essential to the sandwich—but you still need some icky, sticky, peanut butter descriptions to keep them together.
Sometimes you have to open the jar.
Sunday, September 29, 2013
Monday, August 5, 2013
Thursday, August 1, 2013
Friday, May 31, 2013
Saturday, February 23, 2013
Face it, some cities are easy to live in. Detroit's all knuckle.
So, as a lover of Detroit and an inveterate real estate ad consumer, I have come to the conclusion that I should buy into the city. Nothing says I love you like a moldering Victorian, a vegetable garden, and a Cold War with the neighbors over your urban chicken coop.
But how will I buy such a wonderland? Even in Detroit, houses of merit cost money... Not much money, but I digress.
Like all of the pioneers who have come before me, journeying forth into the wild hinterlands, I require a surplus of funds (all I know about the hinterlands I learned from playing Oregon Trail, where the banker always wins and the farmer always loses... Great metaphor for life, crappy history).
So, I will write a world famous series of books about Detroit... And you, gentle readers, will buy it.
Detroit, Michigan, a city with a heart made of steel and a soul created by hard working men and women. Joe Louis and the Dodge brothers. The Paris of the Midwest (shut up, it's a thing). It's a great setting for... An urban fantasy? Or a hardcore suspense?
Comments? Questions? Suggestions?
The floor is open.
Monday, February 11, 2013
Like many addicts I caught the bug from my parents. I moved around a lot as a kid, so I have been to a lot of open houses and a metric ton of house hunts. Consider me an expert on wobbly foundations, wibbly molding, and illegal additions.
Dropping me in downtown Detroit is like putting a chocoholic knee deep in Switzerland's finest black gold.
Damn straight, it's enough to make me pull out a Beverley Hillbillies reference.
Unfortunately, like any kid in a candy shop I'm finding it hard to choose. My eyes are bigger than my head. I want them all... the historic gems on real estate websites for half what an 800 square foot ranch house in California would cost... and the abandoned bungalows, little more than windowless shacks sticking out of the snowy ground. As long as the roof's in good shape and the plumbing hasn't been stripped, I'd be happy to renovate. I even like renovating, almost as much as I like real estate listings, and if the place were in bad enough shape then I could do something really interesting. Replace entire walls with glass brick. Install an outdoor shower in the backyard. Redo an entire bathroom in cedar to make my own sauna. I don't do plumbing, and I don't do electricity but other than that I'm willing to bungle almost anything, consider me locked, loaded, and ready to go.
All I need is a registered deed, a crowbar, and a pallet full of Mexican tile.
It's cheaper than therapy.
Otherwise I just might have to join Real Estate Anonymous.
I might have to start Real Estate Anonymous. Friends of This Old House.
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Seriously though, does anyone out there want to know what I think about Slows (go to there), Cliff Bell's (go to there now), or the Grand Trunk (go to there for brunch)
Thoughts and requests go in the comments section.
Saturday, February 2, 2013
2. Do laundry... Clothes are important, without them you'd be naked.
3. Eat cheese... Wait, don't eat cheese. That's something you do when you finish the to do list, not something to put on the to do list.
4. Write... Work on the MS, not a blogpost... Err...
5. Avoid the cat... He's up to something.
Friday, February 1, 2013
First, this sort of event is better with someone else. When every piece is a discussion point you can spend many happy hours perusing any collection. And, while I like art, that's not something I can necessarily do by myself.
Unless we're talking impressionists... Or colorists... Or any hundreds of other things that aren't this. Some of the pieces make me laugh and while it is an exhibit on perception and interpretation I get the feeling that some of the other patrons want to hit me...
Second, if every single piece has to be explained then you're over curating. And if you're over curating then there might be one or two pieces that could be cut. Art should stand on its own, evoking a response (primal or otherwise) without the use of little cards.
In conclusion, I had fun. It was like something out of Tennyson ("the ladies come and go talking of Michelangelo"). I will probably be back, I think there are some pieces that deserve a closer look when there are fewer people around, and if you're looking for something to do in Detroit than I recommend it. If you're looking to move to Detroit and want to know what kind of scene there is then this is just further proof that there's every kind of scene.
Now, should I go across the street to the super schmancy restaurant or go back to my neighborhood and eat pub food?
I ordered the California Pinot Grigio not the Michigan (I'm not that adventurous, and they only had two Pinot grigios by the glass) and the host brought over a shrimp crostini on the house. I don't eat bread, but when you're giving me rare shrimp and goat cheese on a crostini then you're forcing my hand.
The beet salad was fantastic, beats, goat cheese, some greens, walnuts, and a mustard dressing. I'm a big fan of mustard dressings. I make my own. This one was better. The ehole thing was better. Sweet, salty, nutty, creamy, it had everything... Le sigh.
Next was another glass of wine. Again, not something I would normally do. Again, on the house. Free appetizer, free wine, double le sigh.
After that I got down to business, glazed salmon and a Brussel sprout, blue cheese, and pancetta accompaniment. Yumminess. By the end you could have rolled me way from the table. It was so good. I spent all my grocery money on one meal, and I don't regret a penny.
Thursday, January 31, 2013
It's come to my attention that I've become much girlies since moving to Detroit. If true it's because I'm in love... With compliments, and with a Midwest attitude where guys hold doors, pay for coffee, and walk me home. I know that I'm a strong, independent woman, but sometimes it's fun to get all dolled up up and have some fun.
What about you? Anyone have a favorite outfit, the kind that always gets a great response? Or--better--do you have a favorite makeover romance? The kind where everybody already knows that true beauty comes from within (My favorite is Jennifer Crusie's Bet Me... Yes, damn it, it is a makeover story. They go shopping.)
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Is that too much to ask?
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Here in Detroit it's another story.
Cars race by my window, the theater next door lets out, and a fluffy gray cat attempts to eat my flip flops (they're his now, damn it). Some people might think this is a downgrade. I don't. Detroit is a city on the edge, a place that can be summed up by referencing zombie movies ("you ever see I Am Legend? It's like that... with brunch."), where you can't by electronics or blue jeans and grocery shopping is only possible for a few hours on Saturday.
But if you can put it up with a thousand small indignities then Detroit is also a pretty cool place. The people are friendly. The food is awesome (don't ask about Chinese, just don't ask). There's always something happening.
And eventually the sound of cars passing on Woodward Avenue becomes a familiar setting for a night's rest. Like waves breaking against the shore, the high revving motors of Motor City lull me to sleep.
Tomorrow will be here soon enough.
Saturday, January 19, 2013
2. Rent is due on the first of the month. It is payable by check, money order, Paypal, or cash. Art is also accepted as a reasonable currency (see, I am a beneficent queen).
3. Weekly trips to Eastern Market are optional but encouraged. Seriously, who doesn't like locally grown produce and well hung meat?
4. When I go out of town for work someone has to feed my cat (there has to be some benefit to being queen).
5. Weekly potluck dinners at my place! Or not! Impromptu ice cream parties on the other hand will most definitely be a thing.
6. Free wi-fi! Or, I will put my router near a wall! Or you can put your router near a wall, and I will give you a break on the rent.
7. Pets are allowed, within reason (no toucans, giant squid, or elephants... Even if they are meant to be ironic.)
Seriously though, there is an apartment building for sale walking distance to my work, across the street from the new coffee place. Four units. Twenty one thousand dollars. Who doesn't think that's an awesome plan?