Bras Are The Work of The Devil!

Bras are the work of the devil!! Are you with me on this?

It’s Hump Day, so I thought it was appropriate to talk about over the shoulder boulder holders.

I love being a writer because writing is an activity that doesn’t require a flopper stopper. And believe me, if I’m up and about, I need to keep the girls leashed!

When I absolutely have to wear a double barreled sling shot, I prefer a front clasp racerback. This isn’t because it makes me sound like I belong in Nascar … it’s not even because there is something sexy and enticing about a front-clasp … it’s all about easy off and no slippage.

The most annoying thing aside from having to wear a medieval torture device, is when the straps slip down your arms. This never happens with a racerback. I also don’t have to pull a muscle trying to reach the back clasps. It’s a win-win!

When you start reading the Summer Lovin’ box set, the best advice I can give is lose the booby holder! Find a comfy spot, give the girls a little freedom, and settle in for the long haul! Even though these aren’t erotic stories, they are still pretty hot and you don’t want to have to deal with boob sweat in the cups!! 

If you haven’t heard of the Summer Lovin’ set, it is a collection of 14 novels and novellas all with a summer theme, many from USA Today and National Bestselling authors. The best part, it’s only $.99. Get it while it’s hot because it’s available only for a limited time!

My debut novel from 2011, RelayFor Love, is one of the novels in Summer Lovin’

In Relay For Love, widow Hannah Locke has a life plan, which does NOT include falling in love again. She lost her husband five years ago and still aches from that loss. That ache seems to dull as it is replaced with a new longing for a man she hardly knows but can’t seem to get out of her head. Aaron Hawkins was only supposed to write a story about Hannah’s Relay For Life fundraising event, but their immediate attraction has him looking for more than just a headline and has Hannah forgetting all about her perfect life plan.

Writing this story was an emotional journey for me. It’s an emotional journey for readers, too, who claim they are laughing on one page and crying on the next. Even my editor, who NEVER cries, shed a few tears (and cussed me out) while editing this story.

I hope someday very soon, this disease is a thing of the past!! That’s why a percentage of my royalties from this book and A Flame Burns Inside is donated to the American Cancer Society to help raise awareness about prevention and treatment and help find a cure!

Pick up Summer Lovin’ today and check out my Facebook page for some great giveaways! 
Summer Lovin’ buy links:
Big dreamer and certifiable overachiever Susan Ann Wall embraces life at full speed and volume. She’s a beer and tea snob, can be bribed with dark chocolate, and the #1 thing on her bucket list is to be the center of a Bon Jovi flash mob.

Susan is a multi-genre author of racy, rule-breaking romance, women’s fiction, and erotic fiction (her erotic titles are published as Ann Victor).  Her bragging rights include nine books in three different series,  three perfect children, adopting an amazing rescue dog, and a happily ever after that started while serving in the U.S. Army and has spanned nearly two decades (which is crazy since she’s not a day over 29).
In her next life, Susan plans to be a 5 foot 10, size 8 rock star married to a chiropractor and will not be terrified of large bridges, spiders, or quiet people (shiver).

Second Chances

SECOND CHANCES is now available. This story is near and dear to my heart as I have had the struggles of raising an autistic child, much like Kira's son in this book.   This book is available for the month of April at the .99 digital price to celebrate Autism Awareness Month.  It is also available in print via Amazon or an autographed copy directly through myself.

I am also teamed up with a local artist, Todd Aubertin, who is carving two wooden spoons to be given away to a random new newsletter subscriber.  To enter, simply sign up for my newsletter between now and the end of the month. The drawing will be held May 1st.  Sign up here.

Below is an excerpt of Second Chances:

Kira Nichols pushed back her shoulder length light brown hair as the crisp salt air blew it across her face. As she walked up the path to the cul-de-sac, her sneakers left small impressions in the soft sand.
She sprang into a run when she heard the rumble of a sports car that was going too fast for a street where small children liked to play. She arrived at the cul-de-sac just as the vehicle skidded to a stop in front of the empty lot across from her house. Then she caught her breath as a lean man with rugged features got out of the car. He flashed her a smile that probably caused most women to melt at his feet.
As the man moved across the lot toward the foundation, which had been capped over and abandoned for about a year now, Kira squared her shoulders and approached him. He was at least six feet tall, and she felt minute beside him. She willed herself to appear calm, but she could feel her cheeks begin to flush.
“Grant Rutledge.” He paused and extended his hand to her. His deep voice, like a shot of brandy, was warm and soothing. She swallowed hard, her anger at his reckless driving temporarily forgotten. Then it flared back, and she ignored his hand.
“Do you know there are children in this area?” she demanded, planting her hands on her hips.
“My apologies if you felt I was going too fast.” He gave an exaggerated glance around. “There aren’t any children about now.”
He offered that smile again, and in spite of her anger, her heart softened for a moment. His hand was still extended, so she shook his calloused fingers. Tingles shot up her arm, and she struggled to keep herself from yanking her hand away. Heat flooded her face. She prayed he couldn’t tell.
“Again, I apologize. I hope you won’t think I have no regard for children.”
Kira turned to go. She gestured absently at his car and said, “I just know the type.”
As she forced herself to walk slowly toward her house, she could feel his eyes on her back. She felt both foolish and thankful that she had stayed in shape.
The solitude of the cul-de-sac was one of the reasons she had always loved this spot as a child whenever she had visited her grandfather. Her house, which she had inherited from him, had been the only one in this two-lot area for years, but it looked like they were going to pick up the pace across the street again. She hoped the new construction company would limit their work to business hours, particularly the hours when Jared would be in preschool.
She thought back to the long hours the last group of workers had kept when they put in the foundation. Jared had been unable to sleep due to the noise and disruption of his routine. Hopefully this time around the noise wouldn’t disturb him. He was just beginning to sleep through the night.
If only she could. 

Second Chances can be found at Amazon, Smashwords, or a signed print copy.

Who wants some HOMETOWN LOVE?

Today is a special day as I welcome Christina Tetreault and I allow her to take over for the day.  I have the pleasure of being a chapter mate of Christina's at NHRWA.  She is having a sale this month of HOMETOWN LOVE.

Christina started writing at the age of 10 on her grandmother's manual typewriter and never stopped. When she is not driving her 3 daughters (ages 7, 5, and 5) around to their various activities or chasing around their three dogs, she is working on a story or reading a romance novel. Currently, she has two series out, The Sherbrookes of Newport and Love on The North Shore. You can visit her website or follow her on Facebook to learn more about her characters and to track her progress on her current writing projects.

Welcome, Christina!!

Don’t give away any secrets but what’s your book about?
Hometown Love which I have on sale this month to celebrate my 3 year anniversary as a published author is about how love can help a person heal.

Back cover blurb: 

Everyone in North Salem thinks they know Jessie Quinn.  She is the town’s quintessential girl next door. The woman you can always turn to when you need a helping hand. Nobody knows that she’s spent years overcoming the emotional scars left by her last boyfriend.

As a single dad and task force officer with the FBI, Mack Ellsbury moves back to North Salem to be closer to his family, not to find love. Then Jessie Quinn returns to his life. Soon Mack no longer sees Jessie as the quiet girl he once tutored in high school but rather the woman he is falling in love with.

Mack’s love helps Jessie erase the scars she’s carried around for so long, but when his ex-wife decides she wants reconciliation, their relationship is put in jeopardy.

What inspired you to write Hometown Love
Jessica Quinn the heroine in this story was originally a minor character in my second book The Billionaire Playboy as well as The Courage To Love. She continued to bug me until I finally gave her a book of her own.

How did you come up with the title?
Both main characters grew up in North Salem, Massachusetts, the fictitious setting for this both as well as the entire series Love On The North Shore. While Jessica remained in town, Mack moved away and lived in Boston for a period of time. At the start of the book he has just moved back town. Since he falls in love with a hometown girl, the title just made sense.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything about your book?
The only thing I might change is to drop more clues toward what is in store for a Tony Bates a secondary character that appears in this book as well as two of my other books. 

Do you have plans for a new book?   Is your book part of a series?
Currently, I am working on the sixth book in my series The Sherbrookes of Newport. I am hoping for an early summer release.  Once that book is done I will start on book three in my series Love On The North Shore.

How long does it take you to write your novel?
It varies.  My first book published The Teacher’s Billionaire took me about 5 years to finish. I started it and then life got in the way. Hometown Love I finished in the shortest amount of time ever. I was able to get the rough draft down in about two and half months. Then I spent about a month on revisions and edits.

What do you think makes a good story?
I think characters are key to a good story. If I do not at least like the characters in novel, I will not even finish it. The plot also needs to stay consistent. Even if it takes place in a fantasy setting, must stay consistent throughout the book.

What do you do when you are not writing?
When I am not writing I do like to go to the gym. Of course I also spend a lot of time driving my daughters to and from their activities. They are all busy girls. I am also a girl scout leader.

Do you have a day job as well?
In addition to writing, I am CEO,CFO and chauffeur for Tetreault Enterprises (AKA my family).

What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
For the most part, I write 5 days a week starting around the time my three daughters leave for school. Once they get off the bus, however, that is it for the day. The weekends are usually filled with family time and the girls’ activities.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I find the beginnings of a story the most difficult to write. Once I get the first few chapters down, I am more comfortable and the story starts to flow.

What does your family think of your writing?
My husband has always been supportive and is in fact my critique partner. My children are not old enough to read what I write, but they love to tell people that mommy is a writer.

What book are you reading now?
I just finished a Lynn Kurland time travel romance this morning.

Do you work with an outline, or just write?
I do a character sketch for the two main characters, however, I do not do a detailed outline. I tried once, and it just didn’t work for me.
How do you market your work? What avenues have you found to work best for your genre?
Over the past three years I have tried a little of everything when it comes to marketing. I have done paid ads with companies such as Bookbub. I have done Facebook parties, blog tours and contest. I have also do ads on such sites as The Romance Studio. I think they all help. I also think regular interaction with my readers has helped.

Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks or hardcover?
I tend to buy more e-books only because it means they don’t take up a lot of space in my house. I still favor paperbacks. There is just something about feeling the paper between your fingers. I will buy paperbacks if I have the opportunity to get them signed by the author. I have never been a big fan of hardcover books.
Is there a particular movie that you preferred over the book version?
The only movie that I can say I enjoyed more than the book was The Bourne Identity. I do not watch many movies that are made from books because I feel they don’t usually do the book justice.

Coffee or tea? 
Coffee. I must drink at least 4 cups of coffee each day.

I personally can't wait to read this book and it has been added to my TBR pile.  Where can you find HOMETOWN LOVE?

Thank you, Christina for joining us today.

Love and Vulnerability

As I start plotting out a couple more books, and as always life events tend to shape that process, I start looking at what is it about love that makes people vulnerable? In my own life, I have been been through good and bad, like most people. I have moments that I thought I was so totally in love that I didn't believe anything could penetrate that and destroy it, but as there have also been times I have been hurt I now make a conscious decision to keep my heart guarded from that which makes me vulnerable.

What's that moment in time that you consciously decide you can't take the hurt or pain any more and never want to go through it again....yet in the back of your mind you still hope for that happily ever after and the one true love that will always be there for you. As a writer, I get to write that ending in my stories and portray that hope for that type of love through my stories.

I have spent a great deal of time in the past week thinking about this. About the risks of putting your heart out there after you have been hurt. We all want to be that priority in someone's life, be the one that they think of first thing when they wake up and last thing when they go to bed, be that one that brings a smile to their face during the day just because they are thinking of you. How do you protect your heart from the hurt that could follow when you make yourself vulnerable.

In The Four Loves, C.S. Lewis penned a lesson on the danger of holding one’s heart too tightly. He writes:

    To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.

After stumbling across the above statement, and doing an exhausting amount of thinking on this subject this week, I have come to the conclusion that it is much better to put your heart out there and run the risk of getting it broken once again than to have it become unbreakable, impenetrable and irredeemable.  I would rather love and be vulnerable than hide my heart away in the name of protection.

Welcome Morgan Wyatt

Please give a warm welcome to Morgan Wyatt who joins us this morning.

Who Writes Erotic Romance Anyhow?

As a Catholic school teacher, I penned serious novels about abused women escaping their abusive mates to carve out a life for themselves and their children. It all sounded rather noble in print, but it wasn’t riveting enough to get published, although an agent did pick it up and went immediately out of business. I am not sure the two were connected. Getting published always managed to elude me.

There was one woman in my former RWA group that managed to get everything she wrote published. She wrote erotic novels, some of the other members whispered as if it were a secret. No secret since she dressed like a character from the cover of her books in a major push-up bra that peeked out from a top barely resting on her shoulders. With her flamboyant hair and tiny stilettos, she became our own regional Dolly Parton.  In my mind, she was the epitome of an erotic romance writer.

Can’t say I knew exactly what an erotic romance writer wrote, but I knew it was hotter than anything I ever wrote. My stories pounded out of the gritty reality of day to day life were less than slinky. They didn’t enter a room on a cloud of perfume and promise, instead they clomped in with a chip on their shoulder.  I was that angry white woman writer.

Something unusual happened. I kept going to workshops, conferences and Nationals and met tons of writers, even ones who confessed to writing erotica. Their ordinariness amazed me. I met school teachers, nurses, grandmothers, and stay-at-home moms that wrote such steamy, and complex tales that I had to ask a few for explanations of how certain things were possible. Sometimes I would argue that they weren’t, but they’d assure me they were. I never asked how they knew.

My image of the erotic romance writer evolved from my flamboyant friend to a middle-aged woman, a mom, a teacher, maybe even someone like myself.  I played with writing hot love scenes, and felt a little silly for my efforts. My first success came when I sent a snippet from a story I wrote to PLAYGIRL Magazine. They published it in their twins edition. I got paid and got a free copy for my efforts, which did not please my husband at that time. I still have the magazine, but not the husband.

Even with that small success, I did not consider myself a writer of steamy scenes until a fateful submission call from Secret Cravings for hot cougar novels. Why not? I gave it a try with my first erotic novel, RELUCTANT COUGAR, whose main character is a fortyish woman who is pursued by a younger man she meets at a funeral.

I followed that novel with my current one, CUB IN BLUE, which details a woman getting passionately involved with a young police officer wounded in the line of duty. I still have another one coming out in February, PUPPY LOVE, followed by two more in the works. Suddenly, I am an erotic romance novelist.
Have I changed to suit my new genre? Not too much, although I am less the angry white woman. Now, I am more the smiling author. Partly because Secret Cravings took a chance on me, but mainly because I took a page from one of my novels and winked at a younger guy, and now I’m marrying him.
What is your image of an erotic romance novelist?
Two lucky commenters will get their choice of either RELUCTANT COUGAR or CUB IN BLUE book.
Also go to to win Godiva chocolate and a strand of cultured pearls. The answer to the contest question is 9 ½ Weeks. Good Luck. 

Blog Tour Schedule

As many of you may know by know, CRASHING HEARTS, was released January 1st via Whiskey Creek Press.  I am absolutely thrilled to have my debut novel finally out there.

To top off the excitement, I am in the midst of a blog tour to promote CRASHING HEARTS.  Please stop by on the following days if you have time.  Would love to see you stop by at any of the different blogs and leave a comment.

January 16th - Romance Book Paradise
January 18th - Kate O'Sullivan (excerpt)
January 24th - Black Velvet Seductions
January 31st - Her Story Calls
February 3rd - Heroines With Heart

Leave a comment here and you let me know where you will leave a comment on one of the above blog tour stops and you could win a signed print copy of CRASHING HEARTS.

Ebooks are available at Amazon or print copies can be ordered directly via paypal here for $12.00 each.

I look forward to seeing you around the above blogs.

Welcome Suzie Quint

Please welcome with me this morning Suzie Quint.  Suzie Quint has always been fascinated with the human psyche, so she can imagine no better way to explore the human condition than through the characters she writes. Finding the happy ending for the people who inhabit her worlds is the best job anyone could have. Getting to share them with others... It doesn't get any better than that.

Welcome, Suzie.  I'm so glad you could join me today. Today we're talking about your new release, Knight of Heart.

What motivated you to write this book?

Like so many authors these days, I became enamored with a supporting character in another book I wrote. Rachel McKnight, the heroine of Knight of Hearts, is the older sister of the hero of A Knight in Cowboy Boots. She’s a little different from the typical romance heroine though. As the oldest girl in a family with a lot of brothers, she’s more than a little bossy. She’s also a “fixer,” which is a good quality for a hotel concierge, but doesn’t work so well in her personal life.

Are the experiences in the novel based on someone you know, or events in your life?

Not particularly. I tend to think of the events of my own life as mundane. What I do take from life, I think, are the emotions. We’ve all had those moments when we’re insecure or when we pretend that we don’t care when our hearts are really breaking, or when we hope someone we love loves us back. Those feelings that are so personal to each of us but that we all share. Those are what I take from life and what, I hope, comes through in my writing.

When and why did you begin writing?

I wrote in high school, then took a long hiatus while I figured out my life. That was actually a good thing since most people have to live some, I think, before we have something to say. When I first moved to Seattle, I didn’t know very many people here and I was in one of those dry spells where I couldn’t find anything I wanted to read (this was long before Goodreads came along and I developed a to-be-read pile that would choke a giraffe.) There’s a piece of writer’s wisdom that says: write what you would want to read. So that’s what I did.

Who or what has influenced your writing, and in what way?

Every writers’ group or critique buddy I’ve ever had has had an influence my writing. My first real writers group here in Seattle probably deserves the most credit. They never let me get away with anything (for which I’m forever in their debt.) I had some horrible habits when they got their hands on me, but they pounded on me and my writing improved tremendously. Critique buddies are invaluable no matter what stage you’re at, because they spot things you’re blind to. I can’t imagine sending something out into the world without them vetting it first.

How did you come up with the title for your book(s)?

Rachel’s surname is McKnight and I played on that with her brother Zach’s book (A Knight in Cowboy Boots), so it seemed like a fun idea to start a theme with the titles. Since Mac plays a lot of poker, it felt right to find a way to reference that as well in the title, so when I came up with Knight of Hearts, I knew it fit. Though as I continue writing about the McKnight clan, I wonder what I was thinking. I may resort to having contests to come up with titles, the way Janet Evonvich does.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

The theme of Knight of Hearts is about relinquishing control and learning to trust someone else, so I suppose there’s a message in that somewhere.

Who is your favorite character in the book?

I think that would be Rachel. Because she’s not fixated on being “nice” and she’s okay with that, there was a certain freedom in writing her. She’s prickly at times, bossy most of the time, and wants to be the one in control all the time. I had a ball putting her in situations where she had to struggle with those inclinations.

Is there anything additional you would like to share with your readers?

Joseph Campbell said that the purpose of mythology was to teach the ancients how to live their lives. Those myths are hard for modern cultures to apply to our daily lives, so I think in some ways the things we choose to read create our personal mythos. Romances are a great way to remind us to keep our hearts open.

Suzie, thank you so much for joining me today.  Knight of Hearts can be purchased here.


Crashing Hearts is due for release in January. Here's a little tease with the first few pages.

Chapter 1

Kira Nichols pushed back her hair as the crisp salt air blew it across her face. She walked up the path—her sneakers leaving small impressions in the soft sand—to the cul-de-sac. At the empty lot across from her house, the foundation had been capped over and abandoned for about a year now.

She sprang into a run at the rumble of a sports car arriv- ing at a fast clip. She arrived at the cul-de-sac at the same time the vehicle skidded to a stop. She caught her breath as the lean, ruggedly handsome man exited his vehicle. The smile he flashed her was one she imagined had many women melting at his feet.

Kira squared her shoulders and approached him. Her five foot two inch frame seemed minute compared to his at least six foot stature. She willed herself to appear calm and not give away that her senses had completely left her at the sight of him.

“Grant Rutledge.” He extended his hand to her. His deep voice, like a shot of brandy, was warm and soothing. She swallowed hard, her anger forgotten for a brief second. Then it flared back and she ignored his hand. “Do you have any idea that there are children in this area?” she demanded, planting her hands on her hips.

“My apologies if you felt I was going too fast.” He gave an exaggerated glance around. “There aren’t any children about now.” He smiled that smile again and in spite of her anger, her heart melted. She started with the realization he still had his hand extended in introduction. She tentatively shook his calloused fingers. Tingles shot up her arm and she struggled with not yanking her hand away. Heat flooded her face. She prayed he couldn’t tell.

“Again, I apologize. I hope you wouldn’t think I have no regard for children.”

Kira turned to go. “I just know the type.” She gestured absently at the car. She forced herself to walk slowly towards her house, feeling his eyes on her back. Her mind whirled. She had practically melted at the sound of his voice. Her cheeks reddened at the thought of him watching her walk away—thankful she had stayed in shape.

The solitude of the cul-de-sac was the reason she origi- nally loved this spot. Her house had been the only one in this two-lot area for six years. She hoped the new construction company would be considerate and not disrupt the serenity, and keep working hours to normal business hours, hours when Jared was in preschool.

She thought back to the long hours they kept when they put in the foundation. Jared had been unable to sleep due to the noise and disruption of his routine. Hopefully this time around the noise wouldn’t disturb him. He was just beginning to sleep through the night.

If only she could.

* * * *

Jared ran up the walkway to meet Kira, signing furiously: “Who is that man?”

“That is Grant Rutledge,” she signed back. “He is going to be building the new house, so you will need to stay away from the construction site.”

Jared’s hands and fingers flew in his excitement to know about the new house, and the fast car he saw. “Jared, use your words.” Kira ushered him into the house.

“Car, red.”

“Yes, the car was red, and it’s very fast, so you must stay away from there.” Kira found Barbara’s eyes over Jared’s head, and gave her the “I have so much to tell you” look.

“Time to get ready for the day, Jared,” Barbara interjected.

Jared skipped off to the bedroom happily, and Barbara handed Kira a cup of coffee. “Spill. I saw him. It wasn’t the fast car that made you come into this house so quick.”

Kira, glaring at Barbara over the coffee, walked slowly to the sliding doors overlooking the ocean. “What happened to the quietness of our lives? Why do I feel like it is gone?”

“Is it gone?” Barbara asked. “Or just stirred up a little? I think maybe you’ve been holding onto grief and bitterness for so long that you don’t have any idea how to look objectively at life. Before you say it, I’m heading for the kitchen and not saying another word. Nevertheless, before I go, let me just say out of love for you, Kira, darling, Patrick’s been gone for four years now. You’ve built your life around Jared, and that’s great because Jared needs you. However, there comes a time when you need someone also, someone besides Jared and an old lady like myself.”

“Barb, it’s not like that.”

“Honey, you’ve been holding on for so long, and don’t tell me you’re not angry with Patrick for the way he left the night of the accident. Kira, I’m angry with him. He never should’ve left that way. You had it just as tough as him, if not more, with the crying. He was the father. He should have been here right beside you.”

“Stop! We are not going to rehash that night and we certainly aren’t going to blame Patrick. He’s gone and nothing is going to change that.” Kira looked toward the ocean and for- got about her coffee and Barbara. For a moment she lost track of the here and now and drifted off into the peace of the ocean.

Something caught Kira’s eye, and she turned to see Grant taking measurements, preparing for the construction. Feelings she hadn’t felt in so long flooded her as she watched his dark, wavy hair blow in the breeze. Half sighing, half growling to herself, she turned from the window. Distractions were not what she needed now. There was a routine to follow. For Jared’s sake.


Preorders for your signed copy of CRASHING HEARTS can be ordered via paypal here for $12.00 each or contact me directly to arrange payment.