Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Welcome to Leslie Scott

Leslie is a first-time author, so please check her out!

Jennifer has so kindly offered to host me today on her blog and give me some ideas as to what to talk about. Since, well, this is my very first release and I’m still learning the ropes of blogging and the like. As with most writers, I’d much rather talk about my characters and stories than myself. After all, their lives are far more interesting than ours are, that’s why we read.

My dream has always been to write for a living, to tell stories and have people read them. A few years ago, I decided to stop dreaming about it and actually do it. Helped in part by the fact that my Beta read (and dear friend) told me she wasn’t going to read anything else until I finished one.

One night, while sitting in bed with my husband watching yet another car related show while he talked about the big race at the drag strip that weekend, it hit me. I can combine both our worlds, make it entertaining and sexy. My novel, The Finish Line was born in that moment.

A few interesting tidbits about The Finish Line:

Street racing, since the birth of movies like The Fast and the Furious and shows like Street Outlaws has been given a lot of attention in the past decade. But, it’s not something new. Since the birth of the muscle car, drivers have been testing their mettle on dark streets in the middle of the night.

For me, I thought maybe it was time they try their hands at love.

Jordan, my hero was someone I wanted to be larger than life. The big fish in a little pond, town hero, the sort of guy that everyone wanted to know. So, as I was writing him, he became something special to me. I changed his name then, since I knew he was going to be my first published hero. As a kid, my two first crushes were Jordan Knight from NKOTB and Christian Slater. Thus, Jordan Slater.

Raelynn is the anti me. In truth, I’m much more like her snarky little sister. So, writing her was an adventure in, learning to let go and allow the character to create themselves. There were times writing this, when I really felt like I was being unusually cruel to her. That built a respect, each time the story knocks her down, she just gets stronger. I realized that while she isn’t much like me, she’s someone I could aspire to be like.

Their love story isn’t an easy one, though it was possibly the most fulfilling thing I’ve done aside from having my son. The day I signed my contract, I celebrated for about two minutes before realizing that meant I had to get started on the second novel. Which, reminds me now, that I need to wrap this up and finish up book three.

Thanks so much for spending time with me today. Happy reading!
Blurb:
Another night at the races is more than burnt rubber with a hit of nitrous. For one young woman, it's navigating trauma, love, and loss in the stifling Texas heat under the watchful gaze of her brother’s best friend and reigning King of the Streets, Jordan Slater. Home in Arkadia again, Raelynn Casey starts to heal from a terrible incident at college. She finds love in Jordan, a member of her brother’s circle of racing buddies. When another in the racing circle, the guy who took her to her high school prom, exposes his feelings for Raelynn, tragedy erupts like a tank of race fuel. Guilt, remorse, and pain must be overcome before Raelynn and Jordan can race to The Finish Line.
The Finish Line, Paperback http://bit.ly/2isnD4u
The Finish Line, Nook http://bit.ly/2A88mjH
The Finish Line, Kindle http://amzn.to/2A875ZX
Author Bio:
Leslie Scott thrives in the middle of chaos. Not because she home schools her son and rides herd over the family's zoo of indoor pets or listens to her soul mate wax poetically about all things car and related. Oh, no. That's nothing. The real chaos is the characters in her mind, elbowing and tripping each other to get to the front of the line so they can be the next romantic couple in one of her stories. Her family is her passion. Writing romance is her dream.
Links:
Readers can find me on my website: lesliescottromance.com, on Twitter @leslieSwrites, and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lesliescottwrites. I’m really active on twitter/facebook and would love to hear from readers!

Monday, December 11, 2017

Happy Chanukah!

Tomorrow night is the start of Chanukah and this year is going to be a very different type of celebration.

To start with, the Princess will still be in school for most of it, so we won’t get to celebrate with her until the last two nights of the holiday. I picked out and wrapped her presents, as well as included an electric menorah for her to light in her room. I mailed her the ones she can open at school. And we hope she’ll be able to call or FaceTime us while she does it, even though she’s in the middle of finals. But it won’t be the same.

Chanukah’s not a big holiday, and even though it falls around Christmas usually, it’s NOT a Jewish version of Christmas. But it is a holiday and I like to gather my family around during that time. Short of a very select few things that absolutely can’t be skipped, everyone is expected to be at home, together, while we light the candles. That often means they leave afterwards, but for that half hour each evening, we are together.

It also means most of the traditions will fall on Banana Girl—putting up the window clings, lighting the electric window menorah (which I have never liked), and making gelt. The presents have been sitting out, wrapped, since I started purchasing them—I was very organized this year, which even surprised me—and there’s only been some of the interest level in them, probably because we’re missing a child. Although Banana Girl did show concern when she counted and didn’t see enough presents for the entire holiday (that’s because some of the orders haven’t come in yet, despite my best intentions).

We’ll be FaceTiming the grandparents in for the first time, and I’ll be introducing a whole additional group to the joys of fried Oreos. This year, the family Chanukah party is at my house. I still haven’t quite perfected the food pairings that go with fried Oreos, but I suspect no one will care. And I think even my husband got a little carried away with the amount of Oreos needed this season.

So, like everything else in this year of change, things will be different. And while I hate change, I have to admit that it’s been fun trying to figure out new traditions and balancing the old ones.


To all those who celebrate, wishing you a very Happy Chanukah!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Welcome Donna Simonetta

Please welcome fellow TWRP author, Donna Simonetta, to my blog, talking about her latest book.

I love reading small-town contemporary romance! Give me a new Fool’s Gold book by Susan Mallery, a comfy chair, and a cup of coffee, and I’m set for the day. When I first started writing romance, I wrote paranormal stories, and I love those too. But I wanted to try my hand at a small-town romance––to be clear, a small town with no witches, shifters, or Fae.
I’m a born and bred New Englander, and my husband is a native Virginian, so I thought I’d make the female protagonist from Connecticut and the male protagonist from Virginia. I decided to set it in Virginia, and the quirky, little town of Rivers Bend was created! Once I imagined the town and its inhabitants, I knew one book wasn’t going to be enough to tell its story. Rivers Bend deserved a trilogy.
A Sweeter Spot is the first book in the trilogy, and tells the story of Magda Horvath relocating to Rivers Bend for a brief stay to help her best friend. Of course, she fell in love with the town, and once she got to know Jefferson Braden and his big, loving family, she didn’t want to leave. Too bad her oily ex-fiancĂ© and wealthy grandmother won’t stop at anything to get her back to Manhattan and the life she left behind.
Love is Lovelier is the second book in the trilogy, and it focuses on Jeff’s sister Heather, and her first love, who broke her heart back in the day. Now he’s moved to the Bend, and is wreaking havoc in her life again. I’m working with my publisher on the final stages of that book, and I hope it will be released in early 2018. I’m currently writing book 3, wherein the wildest Braden, youngest son Jason, finally meets the woman who might be immune to his charms.
I’m going to be sad when I’m done writing the Rivers Bend trilogy. I’ve spent the last few years living there in mind, and it seems like a real place to me, and I’ll be sorry to say good-bye to its residents. Maybe, like Magda, I won’t be able to resist the easy pace, and warm comfort of Rivers Bend, and the next generation of Bradens will decide to tell me their stories too!

Blurb:
Magda knows a 28-year-old shouldn’t run away from home, but Rivers Bend is the ideal escape. Helping out her best friend will get her away from her uber-wealthy, controlling grandmother and duplicitous ex. She doesn’t expect the quirky little town to feel so much like home. Add in hotter-than-the-sun Jeff and his daughter, and leaving seems as unthinkable as it is inevitable.
Raising Sam alone, Jeff knew he wanted her to grow up in his supportive hometown. The arrival of a feisty new tenant sends Jeff's world spinning. Magda fills a void in his life that he’d like to make permanent.
Will love triumph over the most powerful woman in the country, and can they figure out how to make this happy-for-now in Rivers Bend into their happy-ever-after?

Excerpt:
“Being cheated on is no fun. It happened to me once. Up here,” he tapped his forehead. “You know it’s not your fault. But here,” he tapped his chest over his heart. “You feel like it has to be your fault – like you could’ve done something to prevent it. But you couldn’t have. It’s all on him, Maggie. Not you.”
She picked a dandelion, whose flower had turned into a puffball, and blew on it, scattering the fluff to the wind. “Maybe. Maybe not. But thanks for the support.”
She pushed to her feet and took a couple of steps toward the river. Jeff rose and followed. 
How could he be so angry at a man he didn’t even know? How could this Pierce jerk have slept around on a woman like Maggie? And the prick had even made her doubt herself in the process. It was written all over her anguished face.
He stood behind her and gently kneaded her shoulders. He turned her to face him and cupped her face in his big hands.
“This Pierce guy is the biggest fool on earth to go to someone else when he had you at home, Maggie.”
She blinked away tears, and he felt his heart constrict. Before he could think it through and decide it was a really bad idea, Jeff dipped his head and captured Magda’s lips in a gentle kiss.

Bio:
My career has been a winding road. I worked in the business world for years, got my MLS and worked in a school library, and am now living my dream as an author. I love to read and write contemporary and fantasy romance. I live in Maryland, with my husband, who is my real-life romance hero. We both enjoy traveling to visit our far-flung family and friends, and spending time on the beach with an umbrella drink and a good book.

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