Well, it’s been a busy few days of sightseeing and shopping with my mom and one of her friends. The hubs has been a real trooper! Needless to say, I have not done much writing or editing as a result. But, I did turn I Seducing The Assassin and I started writing book 2 of the Lustful Lords series. And just before my mom came I got the first round of edits on book 1 of the Lustful Lords. So, I can promise y’all I have been and will continue to be very busy!
Usually, I find it hard to write holiday stories unless the holiday is just around the corner. Publishers typically want holiday stories 4-6 months ahead of the holiday. So I’d have to write my Christmas romance in the middle of summer. It is hard to think about snow when it is 100 degrees outside. Okay, maybe it isn’t. 🙂
There seems to be a lot of holiday calls already listed. Or maybe I’m just looking more closely this year. I just finished a Halloween short story and am looking at another Halloween call for novellas. I’ve already started a Christmas story with a reindeer shifter, too. So I guess I’m really getting into the holidays this year.
I don’t seem to have as many random story ideas in 2017. Something needs to inspire me, or I need to write for a purpose. I think I’ll try to write for more calls this year. I’ve already had two stories accepted that I’ve written for calls. That’s a good start.
So as research for my next Halloween story what is your favorite paranormal creature? I keep changing my answer depending on my mood. Right now I think demons are pretty darn sexy.
But of course, I never like to write the “popular” thing. Nope, I don’t write regency era books. Instead, I like me some Victorian era naughtiness. The fun part is getting to research what life was really like. Which is what probably keeps me coming back to this genre.
I think the thing I love most is the veneer of respectability that hides a seething mass of sexual fun and depravity. It gives me a deep well of plot options for keeping it sexy. Which I am working hard to do.
Little did I imagine, back when I first came up with The Market that it would grow to be part of three series and a few novellas. But here we are. I have the original Market series books, a new full length series Lustful Lords coming out with Jack’s House, and The Ladies League a steampunk series where The Market plays in a whole new arena. And the best part is all of the kinky fun to be found thanks to the Victorians!
Be be sure to follow me online or join my newsletter to keep up with the latest. 🙂
Ha! Ha! Ha! Yeah, yeah, I’m of Scottish descent. But it won’t stop me from hoisting a pint. Maybe because I have such awesome news to celebrate. What? I don’t get to celebrate a new contract for at least a month? Okay. Fine. But just to catch those of you up who may have missed it…
Jack’s House Publishing has acquired the first two books of a new historical erotic romance series from me! The first book in The Lustful Lords series will come out later this year, The Hand-Me-Down Countess. What starts as an unwanted marriage of convenience for the headstrong Lady Theodora Lawton and confirmed rake, Lord Achilles Denton, Earl of Stonemere, morphs into a marriage based on love and mutual respect.
Do you write sexy contemporary or historical romance? Do you want to know more about what we’re looking for at Jack’s House Publishing? Our publisher, Marie Force, a New York Times bestselling author in her own right, has laid it all out in a new Q&A that demystifies the submission and acquisition process. Read Marie’s Q&A here.
You should also know that Carina Press is hiring freelance content and developmental editors! This happens once a year as far as I know, so if you are or want to be an editor follow the link and get the details. 🙂
And, last but not least, Mergers & Acquisitions has re-launched with a new cover. If you haven’t picked up this hot little read, you should do it today. It’s only $0.99!
Shannon Pearce is an acquisitions specialist who helps businesses buy other businesses. Her latest project has left her fantasizing about her provocative client. After closing the deal successfully, she is faced with another proposition of a very personal nature.
Dalton Granger can’t get his very sexy acquisition specialist out of his head. For weeks he has been tormented by the idea of not only having her in his bed but also at his mercy. What Dom doesn’t fantasize about a sensual, submissive woman? But, can she let go long enough to relax and give him the control he craves? If she does, will she dance along the edge of passion with him and push her own boundaries or cling to the power she’s worked so long to gain?
So, now that you’re all caught up, be sure to follow me online to keep up with the latest. 🙂
February has been an amazing month for me writing wise. It is the shortest month of the year and I’ve written 38,500 words. I have completed four new projects. Two of these projects were short stories and the other two were novellas. Three of the four were for calls. Nothing can inspire a story like a publisher’s call!
I have always wanted to be productive daily. I’ve envied the authors who could continually make a large word count day after day. I have recently realized the secret. The secret to productivity is self-disciple AND knowing what you are going to write. The second part was often my problem in the past. I wanted to write daily but I didn’t have a clear vision of what. That would end with me staring at a blank Word document twiddling my thumbs. Even freewriting didn’t get my must going because I didn’t have a project to get to.
As I mentioned above, I finished projects for three calls. In the process, I’ve gotten in the habit of sitting at the computer and at least finishing one chapter a day. Over the past week, I have actually gotten into the habit of writing at least 2k a day. Not quite NaNoWriMo pace but I’m hoping I’ll get there.
I plan to try to continue this habit. I have already chosen another call to write for. After I finish that I’m diving into a story I will probably self-pub. The good news is that the story is outlined chapter by chapter. So when I come to that project and I sit down to write the day’s chapter I won’t be stuck. I will have a plan. I even have that plan written out and sitting in front of me. It reminds me I should be working.
I feel as if I’ve unlocked the key to the future I’ve always wanted. I’ll let you know how March’s productivity goes. I’m starting a new project tomorrow.
One of the ways I keep motivated while plotting and writing is to use a Pintrest board for inspiration. For a particular book or world it can hold all kinds of inspiration and ideas that I may incorporate as I write it. Here is a glimpse at my board for the newest story I’m working on, Seducing The Assassin (The Ladies League). It is chock full of fun steampunk renderings by artists, models wearing steampunk inspired fashions, and some totally hot dudes…’cause, you know…hot dudes. 🙂
(Click the image to see the full color board on Pintrest)
London 1842, New Victorian Era
Josephine Stanton, Madame and assassin, has received another assignment from her primary client, Her Majesty Queen Victoria. Granted, most of her jobs come from The Bureau of Steam Technology on her behalf, but she prefers to think of herself as working for her Queen. Content with her life, she sets up her mark only to have her entire world turned upside down and everything she’s worked for put in jeopardy.
John Griffin, the Earl of Melton, is a man of many secrets. A former soldier, he was recalled from the life he loved in order to replace his father as Earl. But with the advent of steam technology, he has found a way to re-engage his analytical side–too bad its more controversial than is proper for a peer of the realm. Walking a fine line as he balances appearances he is not prepared for the beautiful woman who has come to kill him.
Neither of the pair expects the heat that steams them up between the sheets and ultimately sets New Victorian London on its ear.
And here’s a little sample…
Jo tracked the incongruous gentleman from beneath lowered lashes as he lumbered through the grand foyer of The Market. Her special customers were not typically challenging to spot, especially for someone of her specific skill set. But this man was more disparate than normal.
Regardless, his presence made it clear she would be required to kill again. Soon.
The actual act of killing someone had long ago ceased to bother her, but something about this man caused uneasy ripples to slither across her skin. Despite her discomfort, she had a role to play and a brothel full of guests as her audience. After all, as Madame La Roux, the owner of one of the most exclusive houses of pleasure in all of London, she could never let them see her sweat, no matter how much society turned the steam up.
Taking a deep breath in fortification, she glided down the steps to welcome her newest customer. He glanced up at the first rustle of her dress and stood waiting for her as she descended. A calculated study in sensuality, every movement was practiced with the purpose of stoking a man’s desires. The short fringe of ruffles guarding the apex of her thighs but left every tantalizing inch of her hosiery clad legs exposed until they disappeared into her calf boots. A purposeful–and practical–display, that by all accounts left the man’s frigid stare unmoved. Not a flicker of desire. She suspected the differences from the usual messengers would only continue from there. Normally they stood there waiting for her, nervous and twitchy. She would arrive in front of them and they would stammer and stare as they presented her the token. Hands warm and clammy, the metal disc transferred from their hand to hers.
Would this cold man’s hands be warm and clammy as he handed over the disc? Would the aura of excitement be palpable when he came into proximity? No, not this man. This time they sent her someone who knew what he was doing, knew that he was initiating a chain reaction that would result in a life being snuffed out, and he could not have been more indifferent to the whole situation.
Arriving in the foyer, she strode across the empty space allowing her confidence to shine through. She would not allow him to sense her fear of him, or more correctly his indifference. “Good evening sir, I understand you wished to speak with me?” She allowed her long lashes to dip and shield her eyes from his probing gaze.
“Madame La Roux it is a pleasure to meet you. I was told to present this token and I would be treated accordingly.” He held out the coin pinched between two fingers.
Jo held out her palm, letting it drop into her hand while avoiding touching him in any way. Now she would have to determine which of her girls could handle this man. Indifference was a danger in a man seeking the company of a woman, she should choose a girl strong enough to manage him without getting herself into trouble. There was only one available girl she could trust, Katerina. Accomplished in both the sexual arts and the more lethal arts of an assassin she could manage this man and extricate herself if required. “I believe I have the perfect lady for you, monsieur. Please follow me.” She allowed her fake French accent to lace her words.
“Of course, I defer to your expertise Madame.” He bowed and held out his arm for her to take.
Jo placed her hand in the crook of his elbow, suppressed the urge to shudder, and then led him into the main salon. “La, you must tell me your name.”
“You may call me Mr. Xavier.”
She nodded, easily accepting what she knew to be a false name. It was part of her daily business life whether working as an assassin or arranging a client for one of her girls. The ladies of The Market were some of the most beautiful in London, and maybe even all of Europe, though that may have been her overweening pride. The steamlanterns cast a soft glow around the room illuminating the ladies in the most artful way. Katerina sat near the fire allowing the orange flames to catch the golden flecks of her hair highlighting the flattering fall of silk over one shoulder. Her blue eyes slanted up at the corners, not unlike Jo’s own, and were framed by khol smudged lashes that were the envy of every woman in London. She led Mr. Xavier over to Katerina and made the introductions. Jo casually fluttered her fingers at her neck as she spoke, letting Katerina know that this one was to be handled carefully. He was a wild card and not to be trusted.
The gentleman joined the blonde on the couch where they began to chat intimately. Jo departed quietly, letting the pair go about their business. With the heavy token searing her skin like a brand, she made her way upstairs to change her clothes for her meeting. Her services were required by Queen and country.
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I’m hard at work on the long awaited Out of Time #3 – Juliet’s Soldier, at the moment. It’s early days, but it’s going well. I love it when a strong man is brought to his knees by an even stronger woman. In this case, Lt Marc Gallagher has no idea who he’s going up against with Juliet Delafield. Uh huh. I’m going to make him squirm *evil laughter*
Anyway. I’m scheduled to post in here today, and I don’t want to miss that, but I also have a really fun scene to write in the story… you can see my dilemma.
The solution is simple.
I turn to Pinterest when I want inspiration, and here’s a cute board to divert you with. What could be more inspirational than Hot Dudes with Kitties. Really, the title says it all. Enjoy!
It’s okay, you can thank me later 🙂
Lets face it, one of the best things about being a romance author is our ability to “explain” how trolling pictures of half naked hot guys is all part of our creative process. It is. Seriously. I mean, we have to have some inspiration to keep coming up with these hot hunky heros we write about. And since I am starting a new book….guess hat that means? Manspiration time!!!!
So ladies, gird your loins! It’s going to get hot up in here…
That is one sexy smirk…
Nothing not smokin’ hot about that kiss…yowza!
Confused baby? I can help…
Holy mother of… *faints*
And there you have it. Manspiration to make your Friday a little funner and kick off a fabulous weekend! Hey that was so much fun, maybe we should do Manspiratin Mondays!? Lets give it a try on Monday and see if you all dig it. 😉
- Contemporary Romance: Romance novels that are set from 1950 to the present that focus primarily on the romantic relationship.
- Erotic Romance: Novels in which strong, often explicit, sexual interaction is an inherent part of the love story, character growth and relationship development and could not be removed without damaging the storyline. These novels may contain elements of other romance subgenres (such as paranormal, historical, etc.).
- Historical Romance: Romance novels that are set prior to 1950.
- Inspirational Romance: Romance novels in which religious or spiritual beliefs (in the context of any religious or spiritual belief system) are an integral part of the plot.
- Paranormal Romance: Romance novels in which fantasy worlds or paranormal or science fiction elements are an integral part of the plot.
- Romantic Suspense: Romance novels in which suspense, mystery, or thriller elements constitute an integral part of the plot.
- Young Adult Romance: Romance novels in which young adult life is an integral part of the plot.
For me they are spot on when it comes to erotic romance, which is why I always say the reader shouldn’t be able to skip the sex scenes, but especially in erotic romance.
Now the difference between erotic romance and erotica is not always as clear for some readers. Below is my definition.
- Erotica: A story were explicit sexual interaction is an inherent part of one or more character’s journey, but where romance may, or may not, be present.
So, do you agree? Do these definitions help clear things up for you? Maybe they raise more questions?
Want to learn more about writing hot? Well, you’re in luck! I’m teaching my Pumping Up The Sexual Volume class again this summer July 10th-23rd. If you are interested, be sure to check it out: http://sorchamowbray.com/events/pumping-up-the-sexual-volume-2/
And of course, you can follow me on Social Media to hear when class sign-ups open. I hope you’ll join me!
I had one of those days where nothing seemed to go right. Quickly my enthusiasm and my plans for the day went up in smoke. I ended up opening a bottle of wine. I have a hard time letting go of control. I know I can’t control everything, especially other people’s actions, but knowing that and not stressing out about it are two different things.
Authors get to control their characters. We get to pick who the heroine falls in love with. We decided if the hero deserves a promotion or not. We can even decide if they are going to eat pancakes or blueberry muffins for breakfast. I do think authors enjoy having this control. Maybe that’s why I’m finding it so hard to relax in 2017. Things aren’t going my way and I want to change it. The problem is I can’t.
I’m sure lots of authors are screaming out there about how terrible the publishing business is these days. Publishers are closing, bookstores are closing, sales are down. Aside from promoting our books in order to increase sales we really have no control. Sometimes it seems arbitrary when Facebook decides to block a book ad or Amazon throws you in the dungeon for being too naughty.
The question is what do we do now? I’ve asked myself this at least a hundred times lately. I’m still trying to arrive at an answer. I’ll leave you with one final thought.