Posted by: Susan Hanniford Crowley | July 14, 2014

Weekly Paranormal-Scope

While I am not qualified in any way to read neither stars nor planets, I am intimately linked to the paranormal in the world in many ways. So are you.

The paranormal scope is for entertainment purposes only and is not meant to guide your life by.

The week for:

Aries:
Whales go for the deep cool waters when the sun blazes hot.  Keep cool and stay in the shade when traveling.

Taurus:
Hobbits like spicy foods.  It’s time to mix up a little excitement and invite friends over for a festive feast.

Gemini:
Goblins are natural bankers.  Look over your investments.  It may be time to move money, diversify or even redo your will.

Cancer:
Werewolves are adorable and fuzzy.  They may not be hot dressers like a vampire, but they do love to cuddle.  Consider a cuddler.

Leo:
Shapeshifters love to surf and swim.  Remember the sunblock when you go to the beach.

Virgo:
Vampires love the mystery of the night.  A romance may be headed your way or an old romance may revive.  Time to energize that look in the mirror.

Libra:
Pixies are messy but fun.  Forgive the little messes and have more fun in life.

Scorpio:
Faeries have given you a gift of serenity.  Enjoy it while it lasts.

Sagittarius:
Werewolves are industrious.  Things are happening with the job.  Keep your eyes open.  An opportunity may open up.

Capricorn:
Hell hounds are sleeping on your front doorstep.  Go out the back.  Lie low for a while and avoid conflicts.

Aquarius:
Dragons love bubble baths.  Indulge in some relaxation time.

Pisces:
Gremlins specialize in how machines work. It’s time to take inventory for any foreseeable repairs coming up and budget for them.
A mysterious stranger is coming into your group.

-Susan
Susan Hanniford Crowley
www.susanhannifordcrowley.com

New release: Vampire King of New York now in print at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Also in ebooks.

Posted by: Jenna Jaxon | July 13, 2014

Beleaguered is Live!

Although the official release date is tomorrow, Beleaguered, the third book of my medieval serial novel, Time Enough to Love, has released on Amazon and Smashwords!

beleaguered3

I’m really thrilled to have the book complete, because this was the first book I ever wrote and it holds a very special place in my heart.  It took me six months to write, starting in January, 2009 and writing THE END on July 28, 2009.  Originally it was 187,000 words long and was your typically bad first novel.  Headhopping all over the place, repeated words and phrases, anachronistic words.  There was even one whole chapter that I took out upon first revision because absolutely nothing happened in the whole chapter!

But this was the work of my heart and I didn’t give up on it.  I found out that a typical historical novel was about 100K words, and 120K was maybe the top end.  And though I managed to cut it down from 187K to 160K in the first revision, I knew it was still too long.  A colleague suggested publishing it in installments and that then became my mission in life. I found the most wonderful editor, Danielle Fine, who also created the beautiful covers for me, and she and I have worked hard for over a year to take a “first novel” and turn it into a publishable novel.  Mission is now complete.

The first two novellas were around 47-50K, and Book 3 is actually novel length at 71K, so I think I’ve added some back. :)  When the print version comes out, it’s going tobe a BIG book. :)

If you’re interested in Beleaguered, or the whole Time Enough to Love novel, I’ve got the blurb below and buy links for all three books.

Thank you for helping me celebrate a dream come true!

BLURB FOR BELEAGUERED:

When death holds sway in the world, can even the greatest love survive?

Finally in France, Alyse and Thomas return to their roles as courtiers to Princess Joanna. Their passion for one another continues to smolder hot and deep—until one fateful encounter changes everything.

During a formal banquet, Alyse must share an intimate dance with Geoffrey, her first love. His searing touch proves Alyse’s love and desire for him is as strong as when they first met. Tormented by this revelation, Alyse is bitterly torn between the love of her life and her love for her husband.

Into this agonizing situation, the disaster of the Black Death rears its head, decimating the princess’s retinue and threatening all their lives. Alyse, Thomas and Geoffrey must try to save the princess from the ravening disease but at a dire cost to themselves. With her world plunged into chaos, Alyse struggles with her feelings for both of the men she loves. But which love will survive?

EXCERPT FOR BELEAGUERED:

“There were dead rats on the dock.”

“Alyse!” Thomas’s outraged tone brought censure for her bald statement, but she cared not.

Geoffrey had trapped her into speaking with him or risk being rude and bringing about the displeasure of her husband. Common sense warned her to avoid all contact, including conversation, with Geoffrey Longford. Since he had made that impossible in this instance, she chose her own bold method of bringing an end to the conversation—make it as unpleasant as possible.

carriagel“Well, ’tis true, Thomas. We passed them on the way to the carriage.”

Geoffrey laughed, apparently determined not to take offense. “Aye, lady, you will find them living and dead all over the town, not just at the quay.” Turning to Thomas, he added, “There were fewer of them at Port St. Croix than at St. Lucie. ’Tis why Sir Robert decided to land the nobles here. Where the men-at-arms and the long bowmen came ashore, the dead rats were almost knee-deep in places.”

“Lord have mercy!” Alyse shuddered, sudden pity arising for the soldiers.

“They have had a plague of them recently here in Bordeaux, I am told.” Geoffrey’s gaze lingered on her face, a quiet satisfaction alight in the blue depths. “Brought into port aboard foreign ships. You would probably have to fire the entire town to get rid of them.”

Alyse trembled, not only at the thought of the unsavory animals running through the town, but at the look in Geoffrey’s eyes that made her stomach clench and her womanhood throb. She drew closer to Thomas, a potent misery stealing through her for the first time in days.

The men continued to talk, but she paid them no heed, caught in a private hell from which she had believed herself safe. She would have to be vigilant to ensure neither she nor Thomas were burned by the fire that had been kindled months ago between her and Geoffrey Longford. She could not trust any of them now—neither her husband to keep his jealously in check, nor Geoffrey to cease his pursuit of her, nor herself to keep him at bay.

She had believed she loved Thomas enough to lay the ghost of Geoffrey to rest in their bed. But from the moment she had seen him on deck this morning, her beloved still, she knew deep in her very core that Geoffrey had been right: it would never be over between them until they were dead and in the tomb.

This realization frightened her beyond all reason. It was as though she had been two people in one body all day, each belonging to a different man. As long as they lived that would never change. She played with fire each time she met with or spoke to Geoffrey, and one day the banked embers would flame up and consume them both.

There would be hell to pay one way or the other. The only question was how much damage would be wrought. Immortal souls hung in the balance, waiting for Judgment Day.

Beleaguered (Book 3:  Time Enough to Love)  is now available at Amazon and Smashwords.

Betrothal (Book 1) and Betrayal (Book 2) are also available at Amazon and other e-tailers.

 

Posted by: Susan Hanniford Crowley | July 11, 2014

Secret Lives!

Underfoot's Revenge 1
Many people have secret lives!   A webmaster by day and a paranormal romance author by night.  A web developer by day and a singer in a rock band at night.

Last night under the brilliance of the Super Moon, I went to the Murdercycles’ Annual Hot Rod Riot at the Lebanon CT Fairgrounds.  I was thrilled to my very core with the music of a rock band called UnderFoot’s Revenge and their female vocalist Cera Crowley.   The band played and from time to time a motorcycle roared by.

symbol of the Murdercycles

What did I get out of this wild child experience?  New friends! A great time with great music!  And a new black hoodie with Murdercycles on it.

-Susan
Susan Hanniford Crowley
http://www.susanhannifordcrowley.com

 

 

Posted by: malanouette | July 11, 2014

Good Morning

A beautiful day here in New England. The sun is shining and the humidity is low. This morning I’ll be writing on the deck, and this afternoon lunch with a friend and a swim in her pool. Ah, I love summer.

beach

 

What are you reading? I’m reading Power Play #18 in the FBI series by Catherine Coulter.

When I woke up this morning, I had research on my mind and it got me thinking. I send a letter or an email requesting an interviews with a person in their field. This will request will have a list of questions I’ll ask. I follow this up with research online or in the library (Yes, I still love going to a library). I’ve also over the years have an extensive collection of books for research. Some are pretty scary. I’ve got books on wounds, guns and serial killers (this one was particularly disturbing.) It’s all interesting reading and I find I have to pull myself out of the research or I’d never get any writing done.

Does that happen to you?

I’m glad I’m not the only one who can get lost in their investigation of a subject. I recently went to a book launch signing and the author spoke of the psycho’s twisted mind. It was quite interesting to say the least. She had first hand experience on the subject, because she prosecuted them for a living. I could have sat and listened to her stories all day. In fact, next up on my reading list is her newest book. Stop by next week to find out which one it I’m talking about.

Well I’m off to have breakfast, and then writing most of the day. What’s on your agenda today?

Posted by: Susan Hanniford Crowley | July 10, 2014

Social Experiment? by Gerri Brousseau

BegWhile driving to my day job yesterday I heard a story on the radio about a guy who put up a request on one of those cyber sites where you ask for donations. I’m not against this at all. In fact we posted a lot to help our friend, Leia Shaw, raise money to get a service dog for her son, Teo. I think these things can be quite helpful and a total success, but the story on the radio left me wondering.

Apparently some guy put up a request saying he wanted to raise $10.00 to make potato salad and would invite the person(s) making the donation to come help him eat it. Silly, I know. But the real joke was that this guy (as of yesterday) had raised . . . are you ready . . . $22,000.00! Could it possibly be that easy? Then I started to wonder about the tax implications. Would a person file this as income with the IRS? Would the IRS even know about it? (Of course because the IRS knows about everything, don’t they?) I also couldn’t help but wonder if this was done as a social experiment or just for kicks, and most importantly I wonder if this is legal.

 Clearly there are some worthy causes out there, such as Teo’s service dog, and people putting up requestsLemonade for friends who may have lost everything in a fire or someone needing a medical procedure, but the idea of making $22,000.00 on a request to make potato salad leaves me with a lot of questions; such as I wonder how much money I could make if I post a request for $15.00 to make lemonade.

What are your thoughts?

Posted by: Toni Kelly | July 9, 2014

Is it Always Either Or?

I had a meeting this week with my boss’ boss and I have to admit that I always find them very insightful. This is a fairly common practice at my day job as it gives my level of management exposure to a higher level while giving them insight (as long as I provide honest feedback, which I always try to do) as to how my boss is doing overall.
Anyhow, the day job has been a bit chaotic lately because it seems to be a bit of a fiasco as those who report to my level try to decide whether they are truly being micromanaged or not. I personally feel in some cases, some may be, while in other cases, they aren’t. Either way, I’ve heard the phrase “can’t have your cake and eat it” about a gazillion times and my reply is that, “I want both.” Now while that may sound like a spoiled brat, that isn’t my intention, and although I agree that there are some scenarios that truly don’t allow you to have your cake and eat it, I disagree that it always has to be that way. I personally don’t think it has to be an either or all the time and quite frankly, I’m tired of hearing that.
What we may have to realize is that perhaps we can’t do both at the same time. I’ll give an example. As I move forward with this day job of mine, I’ve considered whether I want to pursue an MBA or a CFP and which might be more useful to me based on my path. Of course there are schools that will bundle these two together, but I’m on the verge of having my second child and truth be told, I’m not sure I want to take on that much of a load. So instead of saying I can’t have my cake and eat it, I’m going to say that I’m going to have my cake and just eat it later. In essence, if one door opens, you don’t necessarily need to close the other. Whether you are making decisions within writing or just life in general, be strategic and look at all options, you just might find one that is more agreeable to you.
Happy writing this week!

Posted by: Susan Hanniford Crowley | July 8, 2014

A Few Things I Learned at RT New Orleans

(One of them being how much I wished I had more guts to travel)

 

Hi there! I’m Mandy Rosko and welcome to my first post at Nights of Passion, and it was very wonderful for Susan to invite me :). She and I met at the convention, and it was a total blast. Since this is my first post, I’m going to start off with just an introduction of myself, what I write, and give away some presents to anyone who happens to want them ;)

 

All right, so my name is Mandy Rosko, I write Paranormal romances, some erotic, and M/M romances as well. I’m a little all over the place, but that’s how I generally like it. If something catches my fancy then I tend to want to go for that. I know it’s not the way it should be if I intend on building a platform for myself, and I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone who is trying to build their platform, but that’s just me :)

 

Most of my books are self-published, and that what I know best, though I’ve still got loads more to learn about it. One thing that I definitely learned after I came back from RT in New Orleans was that my books can always change and evolve. That was something that came from Mark Coker, and I thought he was right, so right now I’m in the middle of getting new covers for my Things in the Night Series. I’ve got two out of four so far, with the third on the way, and I love them like crazy.

the legend of werewolf_ebook vampires curse_ebook

Another big thing that I learned about self publishing was that giving away free ebooks doesn’t exactly work the same way it did a few years ago. So few people actually read the free ebooks they receive, which sounds a little strange, but with all the free content out there that’s competing against each other, it actually makes a lot of sense as well.

 

Don’t get me wrong, apparently it still does very, very well, just not the way it did before the market was oversaturated with free content. So if anyone wants to give away free ebooks, make sure they have other books in the same series to follow it up on.

 

Either way, regardless of how it works, I’m still a fan of giving away free ebooks. Whether anyone reads them or not, I enjoy handing out free stuff because I know that some people will still read them, and giving away free content is a great way to make friends the last time I checked.

 

So, to celebrate the new covers to my books, I’m going to put up this coupon code to get a free copy of The Vampire’s Curse on Smashwords. I made this code a few weeks ago, and because I forgot which month was number seven, it will last until the tenth of July, so anyone who wants that book should grab it up and quickly before the coupon dies.

 

I’ve also got a couple of extra print copies, which look amazing :D, and I adore them so much.

photophoto copy

 

I’m going to try and figure out a way of shipping out one of two copies to some fans, but a few things need to be in place before that can happen. The first thing is that I should put a payment on my credit card, because I totally maxed it out this month 0.o and the next thing is that I need to find a way of shipping them out without giving away my home address. I don’t know how that’s going to be possible without getting some more directly from Createspace, but at least they won’t be proof copies. I’ll have to keep everyone updated on that later. Until then, thanks for giving me your time, and here’s your Smashwords code, along with a few other links if you want to keep in touch with me and my books.

 

Cheers,

 

-Mandy

The Vampire’s Curse

 

Use this code to get your free copy using the above link, it’s good until the 10th —>HE29W

 

The Vampire’s Curse:

 With this kiss…

In a city that cannot be found on any map that is inhabited entirely by witches, warlocks, vampires, and werewolves, Kyle McKane is seeking a cure for a curse that turns him into a blood hungry vampire during the night, and leaves him an exhausted, sleep deprived human during the day.

…She will cure him…

Jackie Moore is probably the worst witch in the city apart from her ability to heal wounds and illnesses with a touch of her lips. She rarely sees outsiders and is stunned to come face to teeth with Kyle when he finally succumbs to his hunger and attempts to bite her.

…Whether she wants to or not…

Instead she grabs him by the ears and kisses away his curse before he can sink his fangs into her. The problem is that the cure is only temporary until Kyle turns again the next night, and then goes out in search of Jackie so that she can cure him again, whether she wants to or not

 

Connect with me Online

Facebook.com

Website: Mandyrosko.com

Join My Newsletter (I haven’t sent out any letters yet, so don’t worry about me spamming your email. When I get enough people I can start doing more cool things, like handing out more free books, and maybe finding a way to send out some print copies)

Twitter: @rizzorosko

Goodreads

Posted by: Susan Hanniford Crowley | July 7, 2014

Fireworks Weekly Paranormal-Scope by Susan Hanniford Crowley

While I am not qualified in any way to read neither stars nor planets, I am intimately linked to the paranormal in the world in many ways. So are you.

The paranormal scope is for entertainment purposes only and is not meant to guide your life by.

The week for:

Aries:
Dragons love fireworks and they dance to the beat.  You have a new beat in your life.  Dance.

Taurus:
Turtles carry an ancient wisdom.  Fireworks makes them swim deeper.  Go deep. Involve yourself in your work to a new level.

Gemini:
Hobbits love fireworks and parties.  Still the cleaning up afterward is something best left to elves.  Prepare to clean up a lot.

Cancer:
Vampires avoid fireworks preferring dark intimate places.  Keep your eyes open for the unexpected.

Leo:
Werewolves love fireworks but fetching sparklers is a bad idea.  Reconsider all changes that involve money.

Virgo:
Faeries make their own fireworks, as they walk in the forest.  Don’t walk in the forest alone!

Libra:
Shapeshifters have a unique view of the world.  They like to watch the reflections of fireworks on water.  Try to look at things in a new way.

Scorpio:
Angels sit on clouds to watch fireworks.  You are blessed and you don’t realize how much.

Sagittarius:
Elves use fireworks as an excuse to party.  Expect unexpected guests.

Capricorn:
Pixies claim to have created the first fireworks. Without them, they would not work.  You have a heritage of making things work to the benefit of others.  Be proud of that.

Aquarius:
Vampires don’t like the fire part of fireworks.  They prefer dinner by candlelight.  Use caution in  making new friends.

Pisces:
Whales watch fireworks from beneath the waves.  It looks like long twisted colors dancing.  They often dance with it.  Feel the gentle joy of the whales and relax more.  Have fun in life.

-Susan
Susan Hanniford Crowley
www.susanhannifordcrowley.com

New release: Vampire King of New York now in print at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Also in ebooks.

Posted by: Jenna Jaxon | July 6, 2014

What Inspires Your Writing?

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

I’ve been working on posts for my blog tour for Beleaguered that starts next week and realized that in two of them I wrote about inspiration:  what book/s got me hooked on romance (and ultimately inspired me to write romance) and what inspired me to write Time Enough to Love, of which Beleaguered is the final installment. Its easy to pinpoint what sort of things inspire me to write and there is quite a variety.

A lot of times music has inspired specific stories.  The most blatant instance is my erotic novella 7 Days of Seduction.  The moment I heard and deciphered the lyrics of Katy Perry’s “Last Friday Night,” I knew I had to write a story about a girl who got so wasted at a party she couldn’t remember what happened to her the night before.  The song suggests things that the girl notices the next morning–such as pink flamingos in pool, a guy passed out on a barbeque, and a memory of a ménage a trois.  I incorporated all of these things into my novella, and had a blast writing it.

My current WIP, To Woo A Wicked Widow, was also inspired by music:  The Weather Girls’ “It’s Raining Men.”  I started wondering what would be the equivalent of “raining men” in the Regency period for women.  Men had their clubs where they congregated, but women weren’t allowed in them.  So I thought my women should form a club of their own and because widows had a little more leeway with their behavior at this time, I made them widows of the Battle of Waterloo, where thousands of men were killed on one day.  So all these women were made widows at the same time and would come out of mourning at the same time, ready to make The Widow’s Club a “let’s get a little action” type of club.

I’ve also been inspired by television programs.  A History Channel episode on the Bubonic Plague gave me the plot for Time Enough to Love.

While riding on a Metro train in Washington, DC, a chance thought that the best conflict for a woman going on a deserted island fantasy vacation would be to find her ex-husband there sparked my erotic romantic comedy Almost Perfect.

Other books have inspired my stories as well.  Mary Balogh’s  A Precious Jewel, sparked the third book in my House of Pleasure series, Only A Mistress Will Do, now a WIP.  In Ms. Balogh’s book her heroine has become a working member of a brothel and there was one sentence about her first week as a prostitute being something she refused to think about.  That one sentence made we want to know what those circumstances would be like for a lady of good family to be reduced to prostitution and what would happen in her first encounter with a customer.

So there are some of the things that have inspired my writing.  What inspires yours?

I have lived here for most of my life, so let me share those fun places that tourists usually miss. There is a lot more in Connecticut than casinos.

1. Ocean Beach Park in New London has a beautiful beach of “sugar” sand, great for building sand castles, swimming, and shell collecting. There is a great boardwalk, arcade games, amusement rides, a nature trail, a picnic area, playground, a gift shop, and food and drinks for sale. They have an 18 hole miniature golf, a spray park, a pool and a waterslide. For more information, visit http://www.ocean-beach-park.com/Family-Activities.html Be sure to check the parking/admission page. You will want to check their entire website for all the upcoming events happening at Ocean Beach. When you make a castle, think of me. I spent a good part of my childhood there.

2. Everyone thinks about the Mystic Aquarium when they think Mystic. Consider Mystic Seaport in your family plans. A recent visit surprised even me with the Children’s Museum that my granddaughter who is almost 2 just loved. Visit http://www.mysticseaport.org/locations/kids/ and see all the great things that Mystic Seaport has for children of all ages. Their website is rich with fun events and things to do for everyone in the family. Check here for hours and tickets: http://www.mysticseaport.org/visit/plan-your-visit/hours-tickets/

3. I have always loved the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat. http://www.mysticseaport.org/visit/plan-your-visit/hours-tickets/ I think the best way to explain it is to show you. I know the Circus Train tickets are available now so visit their website quick if you’re interested in that.

Enjoy your summer.  If you’re in Connecticut or thinking of visiting here, be sure to visit these three places special to my heart and full of family fun.  I encourage all writers out there to devote part of this summer to fun, fun, fun!

-Susan
Susan Hanniford Crowley
http://www.susanhannifordcrowley.com

Vampire King of New York is now in Kindle and print at Amazon, Nook and print at Barnes and Noble online, and at Kobo.

 

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