Archive | December 2017

Holiday Feature ~ Interview with Anne Kane @AnneKane

Anne Kane lives in the beautiful Okanagan Valley with a bouncy little rescue mutt, a cantankerous Himalayan cat and too many fish to count. She has two handsome sons and six adorable grandchildren. By day, she’s a respectable bean counter, but after hours her imagination soars and she writes romances that span the galaxy and encompass beings of all sizes, shapes and origins. She first started telling stories as a toddler and she just can’t seem to stop. When she’s not busy working on her next story, her hobbies include kayaking, karate, hiking, motorcycles, swimming, skating, playing guitar, singing and of course, reading.

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An Interview With Anne Kane

If money were not an object, where would you most like to live?
If money weren’t an object, I’d love to have more than one house so that I could always live in an ideal climate, not too hot and not too cold. I could spend part of the year in the Caribbean, or perhaps in Asia and then, when it got too hot there I could retreat back to somewhere in North America. There are so many beautiful places in the world it would be hard to pick just one or two. I suppose the perfect answer would be a yacht that could move from place to place whenever I choose. Yes, I think a nice yacht would be the best answer.

What book for you has been the easiest to write? The hardest? The most fun?
I think the easiest book I ever wrote was the third cyborg book – A Deliciously Bothersome Cyborg. It was one of those rare times when the words seemed to just flow without effort, and the story told itself. In contrast to that was the very first story I wrote for Changeling Press, which I have since released independently. Stranded on Earth was hard to write because I kept second guessing myself, and rewriting and changing settings, moods and everything about it. I had just sold one book to a publisher and I was terrified that it was a fluke and that I sucked as a writer. I worried about everything and just about ruined the story in the process!

Which comes first, the story, the characters, or the setting?
The characters always come first. Once I can see them clearly, and understand how they interact with each other, and what their issues are, then I can move on to the bigger picture. At that point, the setting becomes clear and the story starts to unfold. It takes much longer to write the beginning of a book than the end!

What one resource or tool helps the most with your writing?
Google! It is so much easier to research facts these days than it used to be. If I want to know what the climate is like in a certain part of the world, or how a black hole is formed, I just google it. Of course you can’t believe everything you find on the internet but it’s usually easy to tell truth from fiction.

Do you work from an outline or do you prefer to just see where a story takes you?
Good question, and not an easy one to answer. I usually have an outline but more often than not the story takes me where it wants to go and the outline becomes irrelevant.

As far as writing, are you a morning person or a night owl?
I’m a morning person. I find it so much easier to write first thing in the morning. The words come easier and the storyline is clear. If I try to write late at night I often find myself staring blankly at the laptop screen wondering what to say.

If you could give your younger writing self once piece of advice, what would it be?
Ignore anyone that makes you not believe in yourself. I spent a long time not taking my writing seriously because I didn’t want to be laughed at, and I didn’t believe in myself. I like to think all those people had my best interests at heart but listening to the doubts they instilled meant it took me a long time to make a real effort to get published.

How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
More than I’d like to! I have one full length novel that just needs a bit of tweaking, and another that is about eighty percent finished. Then there’s the novellas, about a half a dozen at least, that are in various stages of completion. I doubt I will ever have all of my stories completed.

Do you write full-time? If not, what is your ‘day job’?
No, I don’t write full time although I’d really love to. In my day job I’m a CPA. I have my own firm so between that and writing it would be nice to have more days in a week!

Name 5 of your favorite movies.
Star Wars
Serenity
The Sound of Music
Up
Finding Nemo
I know, quite a mixture but I love them all!

Would you rather go out to see a movie at a theater or stay home and rent one?
Why?
I like to go to the theatre. I enjoy the fact that I can watch an entire movie without having to get up to answer the phone, let the dog out, change loads in the dryer or let the dog back in. That buttery theatre popcorn isn’t bad either.

Name 2 things you consider yourself to be very good at.
I’m good at organizing people and things and I’m very good at anything to do with numbers. I adore spreadsheets and algorithms!

Name 2 things you consider yourself to be very bad at.
Dealing with mechanical things (like my car) and following directions. I swear I could get lost in a one-horse town if you gave me a guide dog!

Most hated chore on the household chore list?
Laundry! When I had two toddlers in diapers, I lived in a remote spot with no running water and no hydro. In those days, diapers were not disposable and they needed to be washed. So I had to fetch water, heat it and wash the diapers by hand. Daily. That was decades ago, but I have yet to get over my aversion to doing laundry!

Tell us about your new release.

Title: Get Off My Cloud (Set In Stone)
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Release date: December 29, 2017

2670Six months ago, Lucas met the woman of his dreams but after a night of amazing sex he woke up to find himself alone. Sent to rescue the daughter of a billionaire from her own folly, he discovers her to be the same woman, and this time he intends to make sure she stays put this time.

When Olivia discovers a herd of live dinosaurs existing on a small island in the South Pacific, she’s ecstatic. This discovery could crown her career as a paleontologist and put to rest the rumors that her daddy bought her position for her! Of course, when her father sends someone to drag her home, she’s not willing to comply and the couple must find a way to deal with the sizzling attraction between them while running from a herd of angry prehistoric beasts.

 

Read an Excerpt

The voyage had been rougher than Lucas had expected. The fishing trawler he’d rented to get himself from the mainland over to the small island where the target was located had bucked and heaved on the choppy waters, at times threatening to turn itself upside down. Not an ideal ride, but it did the job. He was on the island. Now all he needed to do was locate his employer’s daughter and convince her to leave with him. Grabbing his backpack of supplies, he set out to find her.
Good thing the island was so small. As it was, it was past noon before he caught sight of a battered old canvas tent on the east side of a grassy meadow at the foot of a small hill. He made his way down to the bottom of the hill, cursing the lack of any kind of trail to follow. The low scrub bush that blanketed the area made foot travel slow going. Once he made it to the edge of the flat meadow, he paused to scout out the lay of the land. He wasn’t sure of the best way to approach the woman. She had no idea who he was, and she just might be armed. She would be perfectly justified in defending herself against an unknown male who suddenly showed up unannounced. The last thing he wanted was to engage in a shootout with his employer’s daughter.

Lucas pulled his field glasses out of his backpack and studied the base camp. Two facts immediately slammed into his disbelieving brain. Hard to tell which was more astounding. Firstly, those four-legged creatures stretching up to munch on the tops of the trees definitely did look like dinosaurs.

And secondly, Mr. Billionaire’s daughter was none other than the woman he’d spent one unbelievably fabulous night with almost half a year ago. The woman who’d seduced him, fucked him gloriously senseless and then disappeared before he managed to regain consciousness the following morning.

Hell, he’d started to think he’d dreamed the whole thing. No woman could be that gorgeously curvy, that amazingly good in bed, and then just leave without expecting anything at all from him. He hadn’t even taken her out for dinner. Or breakfast. Not that he was cynical or anything but women were expensive. They didn’t do anything without expecting some kind of payback, and they sure as hell didn’t do all the things she’d done for him and with him and to him without very high expectations.

So when she’d disappeared without a trace, he’d been speechless. Speechless and, if he were honest with himself, just a tiny bit bereft.

He’d wanted more. More of her. More of them together. Taking a deep breath, he strode across the field toward the woman who’d starred in all of his X-rated dreams for the past six months.

He could tell the exact moment she became aware of his presence. Her head came up like a deer who’d suddenly scented a predator. She turned in his direction, and her lips formed a surprised “o.”

Yeah. She remembered him all right. It was in her eyes, in the way the pink tip of her tongue darted out to wet her lips, in the way her nostrils flared as if breathing itself had become an issue.

Her lips curved upward in that slow, sexy smile he remembered so well, and it sent a bolt of heat straight to his groin. Instant hard-on. Yeah. That was her, all right. Olivia. New-age hippie. The first woman to ever love him all night and leave him wanting more the next morning.

He was close enough now to look right into her eyes, to see the warmth there, the genuine happiness at seeing him again. He didn’t get it. She looked thrilled to see him now, so why had she left that morning without so much as a fleeting message, or a goodbye kiss?

Get your copy!

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Changeling Press

Happy Reading!

 

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All I Want For Christmas

At my age I don’t really need people to give me gifts on my birthday or during the holiday season. Don’t get me wrong – I love stuff. New stuff. Shiny stuff. Pretty Stuff. But spending time with friends and family is what I enjoy most. Besides, it’s easier if I get the pretty, shiny, new stuff for myself because I can get the exact make, model and style that I prefer. However, if someone were to give me a gift anyway, there are a number of pretty, shiny or fast things I’d love to receive:

 

 

A juicer

 

 

 

 

A milk frother for topping my coffee with creamy cappuccino-like foam

 

 

 

 

Spa pillow

 

 

 

 

Relaxation fountain

 

 

 

Ride Along in a NASCAR Race Car

But even more important are those gifts we could only hope to receive through kindness, love and the goodness of God:
World peace – yep, it’d be great if we could all just get along.
The end of homelessness and hunger
The end of child abuse
The end of veterans’ suicide due to lack of attention, resources and care from the country they risked their lives for

The list goes on – there’s so much need in the world and I would love to be able to take care of it all. But in the interest of saving time (because I’m getting ready to get my Christmas celebration on), I’ll wish you all happiness, health, safety and blessings.

christmas

What’s on your holiday wish list? Tell us in the comments.

Don’t forget – Books make great gifts!

FK Cover

He’s an officer. She’s enlisted. Their relationship is against military rules. Will they end their sizzling romance or keep it a secret… and pray no one finds out? GET IT HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

Holiday Feature ~ Alishia Curtis

Having spent most of her twenties navigating the minefield that is dating’s landscape, Alishia Curtis writes her debut novel from a humorous, yet honest perspective on what it’s like to be a young lady reluctantly looking for love in the 2000s.
A child of God, lover of shoes, cookies, candies, and music, the mother of one delivers Sex and the Single Girl as her first, but certainly not her last, novel.

 Author of Sex and the Single Girl

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An Interview With Alishia Curtis

What do you do for fun?
Once upon a time, it was going out, dancing and drinking with friends; these days, not so much. Now sleeping is “fun”.

If you were stranded on a tropical island, who would it be with? You can choose any living, deceased or mythical figure.
My boyfriend, because he’s resourceful and would make sure we have food and a roof over our heads.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing as far as content?
My first novel didn’t really provide any challenges as far as content. But in my next novel, I plan on touching on some controversial topics and that may prove to be challenging. Not only for the readers, but for me as the author. I want to tell a story without coming across as preachy or offending anyone, but still getting the message across.

Name three of your favorite things.
Music, cookies (specifically chocolate chip) and my mom.

Name three things that tick you off.
Inconsideration, ignorance and insecure men.

Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
Personal real life experiences and my imagination.

Do you have any suggestions for those just starting a writing career?
Write for the love of it, not to get rich. Hopefully financial success will come, but I would hold onto my day job while I wait.

How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
Two have been started with a few chapters each and there are two more that are in the planning/outline phase.

Does your current book have any deleted scenes or alternate endings?
Yes and yes! Some of those deleted scenes are being worked into book two

What was your hardest scene to write?
I have a few party scenes and if I remember correctly, the wedding/reception scene wore me out!

Do you Google yourself?
LOL, I did when I first published my novel.

What is the best thing you have done in your life?
Give birth to my son.

What would you do if you won a few million dollars?
Pay off debts, give my family some of the money, invest, open my own bar and of course, quit my job to write full time.

If you were written about in the newspaper, on the front page, what would the headline say?
“Small town girl makes it big with hit debut novel Sex and the Single Girl.”

Tell us about your book.

Title: Sex and the Single Girl
Genre: Fiction, Erotica
Release date: October 11, 2017

coverMilan is a daddy’s girl who seems to have it all: she’s attractive, intelligent, comes from a good home, and has no problem getting attention from men. Only problem is she’s getting attention from every guy but the right guy. From the arrogant, but attractive neighbor with the noisy sex life, to the handsome musician that seems to be too good to be true, Milan must balance her struggling love life while keeping an eye on a sister that can’t seem to stay out of rehab and a mother finding love again after years as a widow.
With a degree she’s not using and a job she hates, Milan is a woman of today, experiencing what countless others have experienced upon graduating from college. In her quest for happiness, Milan leans on her best friends Cairo, the good-looking protector with a not so subtle secret and the incredibly honest Donatella, the conceited wild child with a foul mouth and insatiable appetite for men and money. Sex and the Single Girl follows Milan as she navigates her way through lustful, loveless relationships on her journey to find that perfect guy, who may have been right in her face the whole time.

 

Excerpt

“The funeral”

I remember that day as if it happened yesterday. I was sixteen years old and had just gotten home from school. I walked in to find my mother sitting on the floor in the middle of the living room, pictures strewn around her.

“Whatcha doin’?” I asked, plopping down on the chair closest to her.

That’s when I noticed the wetness on her cheeks and her smeared mascara. Nervousness caused my stomach to churn and I fought to swallow the lump that suddenly formed in my throat. As I took a closer look at the picture she held in her trembling hands, I knew something had happened. It was a photograph of her and my father, his hand resting on her prominent belly, a huge smile on his face.

“Mama? What’s the matter?”

I slid onto the floor beside her and when she looked at me with her swollen red eyes, I instinctively knew. I knew this time wasn’t like the others. This was more than just the usual disappearing act after an argument; this time he wasn’t coming back. We held onto each other, amongst pictures that contained years’ worth of memories, and we cried.

***

At the funeral, we sat on the front pew, accepting hugs and condolences from what seemed to be hundreds of mourners that had come to pay their last respects to my father. My mother sat beside me, quietly weeping behind the veil that covered her face. Suddenly a hush fell over the church as a woman dressed completely in red slowly walked up the aisle. There was a young girl about eleven years old, by her side.

The woman kept her eyes on my father and did not stop to acknowledge my mother and I as everyone else had done. Instead, she ran her red-gloved hand along the length of the polished mahogany coffin before stopping to stare into my father’s face. The people in the church began to murmur loudly. My mother’s body stiffened.

Noticing the change in her body language, I asked, “Mama? Do you know her? Who is that woman?”

My mother didn’t respond, but continued staring blankly ahead as the woman stood unsteadily, touching my father’s hands, then reaching out to touch his face. Her quiet sobs became a loud, painful cry and then she began to scream. She let go of the little girl’s hand and threw herself over my father’s body. The crowd let out a collective gasp!

“Don’t she know it’s unclean to touch a dead body?” someone said from the pew behind me.

Someone else yelled, “Somebody get her before she turns that casket over!”

All the while, the lady in red held onto my father wailing, screaming for him to wake up.

“No! No!” she wept. “This isn’t real! Wake up Stanley! Wake up! You can’t leave me!”

Some of the people who had come to stand behind her in line tried to pull her away, but she snatched away from them, holding on to my father’s lapel with one hand, and swinging wildly at them with the other.

“Leave me alone!” she yelled. “Leave me with my Stanley!”

Two ushers rushed down the aisle from their posts at the back of the church and succeeded in prying the irate woman’s hands from my father’s lifeless body.

“Why God? Why not me Lord? Take me too!” she screamed, the ushers all but dragging her flailing body down the center aisle of the church. My mother sat stone-still, her gaze unwavering as she stared straight ahead, eyes open but not seeing anything.
The young girl stood in the spot where her mother had left her, her head bowed and her eyes on the floor. Up until now, I hadn’t seen her face, but as she was led away by another of the church’s ushers, big doe eyes looked directly into mine. Shocked, my mouth dropped open and I blinked rapidly, perhaps trying to blink away what I was seeing, because the face that looked back at me was the mirror image of my own!

 

Get your copy!

Amazon
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Happy Reading!

 

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What Are Your Favorite Holiday Tunes?

Season's GreetingsI absolutely love Christmas music. I could listen to my holiday playlist year-round, but that would drive my family crazy. Instead, I start playing my yuletide favorites just after Thanksgiving and keep them playing until the first of the new year. Today, I’m sharing some of my favorites with you. If a song title has an image next to it, you can click on the image to get a copy for yourself. Don’t forget to post your favorites in the comments below.

 

(some of) Sha Renée’s favorite Christmas songs

 

Drummer boy – Justin Bieber & Busta Rhymes 
Get it here

 

 

 

 

O Holy Night – Third Day
Get it here

 

 

 

 

Christmas Eve Sarajevo – Trans Siberian Orchestra

Get it here

 

 

 

 

Born Is The King – Hillsong

Still her little child – Ray Boltz  (This one will make you cry.)

Carol of the Bells – David Foster

Joy to the World – Anointed

Joy to the World – Chris Tomlin

Angels We Have Heard On High – For King And Country

Angels We Have Heard On High – Avalon

White Winter Hymnal – Pentatonix

This Christmas – Donny Hathaway

Several of the songs I have listed here are on this CD, The Essential Now That’s What I Call Christmas. Get a copy and start listening!

Wonderful Christmastime – Paul McCartney

War Is Over – John Lennon

Step Into Christmas – Elton John

Oh Come All Ye Faithful – Hillsong

Oh Come Oh Come Emmanuel – Aaron Shust

Winter Wonderland – The Eurythmics Okay, I don’t think this one has anything to do with Christmas, but we usually hear it at this time… and come on, who doesn’t love Annie Lennox?

The Holly and the Ivory – Annie Lenox

 

This site participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Happy Listening!