Sunday, June 29, 2014

Facebook Wars

Becoming involved in social media was something I didn't even consider as I was writing my book, The Reluctant Debutante, three years ago. Since then, my naiveté has faded somewhat, and I've discovered I really like certain aspects of the whole thing. For instance, I love to blog. I've rarely missed a Sunday since I started. I like to keep my website current, adding new books and reviews to keep things fresh. And even though I'm not really sure where my Twitter messages are going, or who they're being seen by, I love condensing a message into only 140 characters. It's fun, challenging sometimes, and easy to do.

But, as you can see from the chart on the right, there are many other avenues of social media available. There's Pinterest, Linked In, Google Plus, Wattpad, Facebook....

Ah, Facebook. The bane of my existence. My web designer keeps telling me I only need two Facebook pages--one for personal use, and one for my author page. What she doesn't tell me is how to combine my two versions of an author page. One is linked to my Twitter feed, but I can never remember which, the other to Book Pulse, both have different followers. How to combine them into one comprehensive page is still a mystery to me. So, I guess I'll continue to do what I've been doing and ignore the fact that my Facebook presence is very poor. Hell, I'll probably even tweet out a message about how messed up my Facebook presence has become. Then, I can see what page that Twitter message shows up on. What a brilliant idea! I'm off to tweet.

Oh, and don't forget to visit The Romance Review's blog hop. It ends on Monday, so be sure you're entered into the drawings. And visit Crimson Romance's new bookstore  
Not only will you be able to buy six books for the price of five, if you enter the code FFSAVE on your order form, you'll be able to save an additional 10%. But the deal only lasts until August 31. 

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Please Take Advantage

It's finally summer, and with the change of season, I'm changing some things up on my blog site. As my backlist grew, the list on the right side of the blog page extended further and further. So, I've created a new page called, appropriately enough, Books. There you can find information about all my books, both historic and contemporary, as well as what's next on my schedule. Lots more historicals, and a new contemporary trilogy are in the works. Please click on the "Books" page to find out more.

This is the final week of The Romance Review's blog hop, so click on the link to the right and visit the blog to make yourself eligible for some great prizes and to discover new authors.

Crimson Romance just celebrated their second year in business by opening their own store:

They're offering one book free if you buy five, and, until the end of summer (August 31), you can save even more by using the code FFSAVE. It's good for another 10% off. Stock up on the great authors and books that are available.

And speaking of stocking up--beginning July 7, ten of Crimson's best-selling historical romances will be sold as a bundle for only 99 cents! Authors Elf Ahern, Emma Barron, Elizabeth Meyette, Andrea Cooper, Ivory Lei, Rachel Donnelly, Emma Barry, Marie Patrick, will join me in the bundle of goodness. Be certain to add this wonderful offer to your "Must Buy" list on July 7. And check back here, as I'll be featuring each book and author from time to time throughout the summer.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Third Week of The Romance Review's Summer Blog Hop

It may be summer in some parts of the country, but not even a Summer Blog Hop is going to warm things up here in Northern Ohio, it seems. A perfect time to snuggle up under a blanket with my little dog, Mary, listen to the rain falling outside and read a good book. And the book in question this week? How about Samanthya Wyatt's upcoming release--The Right One.

Here's a little something about the book:
He abducts the wrong woman . . . she proves she is the right one.

Are you enticed yet? How can you not be? Let's find out more about the author behind the lovely name, shall we? 
Take it away, Samanthya!

Ever since I can remember, I have loved curling up with a book. When I was young, I wrote poems and short stories. I signed everything UNKNOWN AUTHOR. I guess even then I feared rejection. When I graduated, my life changed. I married a military man, traveled across the US and abroad, then settled in the Shenandoah Valley and had a family. My children were in high school before I started writing again. About fifteen years ago, I wrote to Catherine Coulter and was amazed that she wrote back. I couldn’t believe it. She was very encouraging and told me to join RWA. She said to write everyday even if it was only one sentence.

Many years later, I’m in a book store looking at the covers wanting to try a new author. I see the face of a hunk on a book cover and immediately bought that book. Yep, ladies. A book cover can make a difference. I’m reading Anna Campbell and – I was hooked!  I went back and bought her other two books (which was all she’d written at that time). I contacted her. She’s so nice, and again I was advised to join RWA. I did it via Internet, and now I am a RWA member, joined several chapters including Hearts Through History Chapter, and I’m a member of Savvy Authors.
I started writing again. I entered a lot of contests, workshops, and made some good friends via e-mails. I finally finished my historical romance, The Right One, the first of a trilogy “One and Only Series”. I contacted more publishers, sent my MS to editors, and continued to hope. A pitch opportunity with Savvy Authors resulted in my book being published. I’m over the moon.
I love history. Research is the pits, as far as the internet. I google everything – but when you click on websites, they usually give you something other than what you’re looking for. It takes a lot of hours to find things. But I learn a lot of history while I’m looking. So many amazing details which makes a good foundation for any MS. I also read, lots of historical romance books. I’ve taken workshops and Eliza Knight is one of the best for historical facts and castles.
I find the more I research, the more I write down, the deeper my thoughts and the more my characters come alive.
Even though historical romance is my first love, I have completed a contemporary romance “Something More” which is also soon to be released. Now I have two books coming out at the same time. How did that happen?

I must have entered a hundred contests, and not all remarks were gentle. But their criticism only made me more determined and I’m so proud I never gave up. Creating characters and bringing two people together in a romantic tale gives me great pleasure. I enjoy penning a story with strong characters, a bit of humor, and active scenes.

I invite you to lay the worries of the world off your shoulders and get lost in the pages of a romance, where you embark on a journey with the hero and heroine, become involved in a dream, plunge into a world of fantasy, live an adventure your heart can share.
Sounds like Samanthya and I are thinking along the same lines. If you want to take her book out for a spin before you decide to purchase, she's graciously agreed to offer up an excerpt here: 
Kat had been summoned. He had requested her presence, not demanded. Beckoned, as if she were an invited guest. The irony of it all.
Her stomach was tied in knots—had been ever since she received his invitation. She tried to slow her breathing. She swallowed, but the lump that lodged from her throat to the center of her chest never moved. Her head throbbed. The pulse in her temples pounded with every beat of her heart. So loud in volume, she feared surely someone could hear it. Glancing over her shoulder, she saw the blond man’s smirk, which was becoming all too familiar. He waited for her to enter the lion’s den. She faced the huge solid oak door, the only thing between her and her impending fate.
The vein in her neck throbbed. If she didn’t calm down, she would be at his mercy. And that would never do. She could not allow him to know how defenseless she believed herself to be.
Lord Whetherford should have absolved her by now. If he was any kind of a gentleman, he would have set her free. She hesitated another moment outside the door. He was at fault—not her. She would demand to be released at once. Her body as taut as a tightly-drawn corset, she knocked on the wooden door.
Hearing his utterance, Kat smoothed her hands down the sides of her gown and squared her shoulders. Knowing Hathridge studied her, she summoned the courage to enter with a confident determination she did not feel.
She opened the study door.
He stood by the window, facing the sunlight, his back to her. A large, dark, muscular man, in all his finery, with broad shoulders and a commanding stance. Inky black waves hung thick and unruly. Tresses just long enough to curl over the neck of a white shirt peeking from the collar of his black suit coat. This man stood as tall as her brother, and Stephen loomed well over six feet. Even from the back, his broadness showed plenty of muscle. Remembering his fight with the ruffians made her sigh, marveling at the instant craving that pierced her torso.
The latch of the closing door generated a spike in her already rapid pulse. No chance to flee since Hathridge, quite possibly, barred the door. She lifted her chin and forced her arms by her side. Not knowing what to say, or if he expected her to say anything at all, she waited. He remained motionless, taking his darn sweet time to acknowledge her presence. Why didn’t he turn around? Why did he ignore her? The silence drew out so long she thought her unsteady legs would not hold her much longer.
Finally, he spoke. “Would you like a drink, my dear?
She had forgotten the low deep timbre of his voice. The rich baritone sent surges of awareness down her spine. An unexpected, distinct wakefulness. She resisted the urge to clasp her hands and entwine her worrisome fingers. Kat answered in a voice she hoped would not crack. “No, thank you.”
She nearly jumped out of her skin when he whirled around like the lash of a whip. He didn’t speak. He stood like stone, the same as she. Smoldering dark eyes seized hers in a heated, locked gaze, drowning her in their penetrating force. She had not been prepared for the dark threatening expression—threatening in the way that she felt something move within her.
Time stood still.
Nothing else in the room existed but the two of them. His hypnotic pull seared her, sending a tingling sensation beginning in her stomach, then flowing down the back of her knees and extending through her limbs making it impossible to move.
Her throat tightened.
If those eyes could shoot fire, they would sear holes right through her. But the expression on his face . . . he looked like he’d just had a good kick in the teeth.
Morgan felt as though someone had just punched him in the gut—hard. His breath caught at the sight of the stunning creature before him. Lost in amazing green eyes—adrift in their sparkling jade and mystique sensuality. He scanned her high cheekbones with soft creamy skin, and let his gaze slide down to fasten on luscious lips. Suddenly his mouth was dry
A cloud of vibrant red hair floated around her shoulders—like the brightest sunset at the end of a day, resting on the shimmering ocean. Luxuriant masses of thick curls inviting a man’s hands. He flexed his to keep from reaching for her. The movement reminded him of the snifter in his palm, which brought him some sense of stability.
He took in her exquisite form, stared at the more-than-generous swell of bosom, letting his heated gaze linger there. A notion popped in the back of his mind telling him to breathe. He tightened his jaw to make sure his mouth did not hang open. His hungry eyes moved lower, perceiving a slim waist before the folds of her gown hid the rest. He swore under his breath. She is exquisite.
She stood straight and tall with her chin at an angle in challenge. Even with that rod in her backbone, he sensed her vulnerability. A pang of concern struck his chest.
“You,” he whispered. What the hell is she doing here?
An explosion went off in his brain. Holy Mother of God! Those fools. They must have brought her here thinking she was Juliana.
Blood and the devil!
 Morgan’s heart kicked and landed somewhere in the bottom of his gut. Choking on the words for this unsettling circumstance, he compelled himself to speak hoping his voice would not betray him. “I owe you my profound apology. There has been a horrendous mistake, madam. And I fear that I have made it.”
Those beautiful eyes blinked. She stared at him as though someone had taken over her senses. Was this woman a simpleton?
He hurried to the sideboard. Even though she could quite possibly be in shock, he ignored the stronger spirits and poured a generous amount of sherry. He didn’t want to knock her on her bum, just bring some color back in her face. He strode back to the unknown beauty and placed the flute in her hand.
Changes came over her face. Stupor—awe—surprise—and . . . anger. Although Morgan was not a patient man, he waited.
Her eyes flamed with fire. “Did I hear you correctly? Mistake?”
Morgan stopped the oath before it left his mouth. “Yes. I believe your being here is a mistake.”
“A mistake.” She echoed with a stupefied look, unseeing the crystal she held in her hand. “That’s what I thought you said.”
She raised the glass and downed the liquid in one swift movement. Tears came to her eyes as she tried not to cough. She marched to the side table and he feared she planned to get more. Instead she set the glass on the table top. When she faced him, her hands were fisted and the fire in her eyes burned brighter than the flames in the hearth.
“Mistake?” she snapped. “I was kidnapped! I have been a prisoner in your home. Forced to come here and forced to remain. I’ve been scared out of my mind. Every day I worried if you still lived. I agonized over what would become of me if you died. Then I walk in here and you have the audacious daring to tell me it was a mistake?”

Please visit my webpage: 
You can also find me on facebook, Goodreads, Amazon, and SMP Authors.
Thank you for your interest. Tell your friends.

Buy links:

Available after June 18, 2014

So, put this on your "To Buy" list for next Wednesday.  Now, use the Summer Blog Hop image in the upper right portion of this page and hop on over to make yourself eligible for some great prizes. 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

The Romance Review's Summer Blog Hope Marches On

Remember what it feels like to walk on hot sand in your bare feet on a hot summer day?

That's the Sizzling Summer Blog Hop.

One entire month to win prizes, gift cards, books, meet new authors, answer fun questions, and read steamy excerpts from new novels, and maybe find some new beach reads. What better way to fill up June? Click on the banner to the right, which will take you to blog central. Play games, answer questions, meet new authors. It's a great group of people who write in all romance genres. 

Yesterday, I attended my chapter's monthly meeting. Our speaker talked about settings for your novels, and how important they were, regardless of the genre. As I always do, I let her words settle in my mind and attempted to see how they applied to my work. I've had five books now to describe the Fitzpatrick family brownstone in New York City in the mid-1800s, so I think I've done an adequate job there. I turned next to my contemporaries. Most specifically, Voice Of An Angel, my most recent release. For that setting, I used Washington, DC. 

I lived and worked in DC in my younger days. My best friend and former roommate still lives there, so I relied on her heavily to get the layout of the city right. But as for the setting? A large portion of the novel takes place in Evelyn's apartment. Like most big cities, apartments in DC come in all shapes and sizes. I think a good judge of character is the space one occupies, so I had to make Evelyn's apartment be truly reflective of her. I chose to put her in one of my favorite places--my first apartment on Capitol Hill. I shared it with the aforementioned roommate, and we made a lot of great memories there. The apartment was the bottom two floors of a four-story townhouse. The entrance to the top apartment was up a flight of steps from the ground, but the bottom apartment entrance was hidden behind this flight of steps, and was two steps down into an English basement. 

I pictured the house and the apartment in my head, but the memory of the actual layout was a bit fuzzy to me. Using my artistic license, I put the living room at the front, the kitchen in the back, with a bathroom in between. It worked for my story quite well. 

When my former roommate read the story, she got to the scene where the downstairs bathroom came into play and said to herself, "I know that bathroom!" I had, in my fuzziness, placed the bathroom in the exact place where it actually had been. In fact, the entire apartment was described as it actually had been all those years ago. With nicer furniture. 

Not everyone is going to react as my former roommate did, but if I can implant in people's minds a believable setting, I've done my job as a writer. 

Here's the cover blurb for Voice Of An Angel: 

Max Bainbridge is an ace newspaper reporter who gets all the biggest assignments, most recently covering the fighting in Afghanistan. When he is shot on the battlefields, he is operated on and then flown home. The nurse responsible for his subsequent care is Evelyn Hammer, a 35-year-old woman who ran for her life from the musical spotlight, when she was 17 and on the cusp of fame. Her new identity has been in place, and impenetrable, ever since. Over the years, she’s found singing is a more soothing way to wake people from surgery, and they are usually so foggy they don’t realize she’s been singing to them. Until Max, that is.
Evelyn knows she’s breaking one of the cardinal rules of nursing by dating a patient, but she can’t resist Max. What begins as an innocent affair with a definite expiration date when Max leaves for his next assignment becomes a real threat to unmasking Evelyn’s hidden identity. Max can’t control his journalism instincts as one clue after another emerges and he realizes he doesn’t know the person he’s fallen in love with.
Only by uncovering Evelyn’s secret past can they move forward with their future. But her past is still there, and threatening. Some secrets are better left alone.

Praise for Voice Of An Angel from Loves All Things Books

I absolutely loved this book. The writing was flawless, the characters jumped from the pages and came to was an amazing read. Very few books have ever made me snot cry, this was one of those books. Definitely a must read.

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Romance Review's Sizzling Summer Blog Hop Is Hot!

Remember what it feels like to walk on hot sand in your bare feet on a hot summer day?

That's the Sizzling Summer Blog Hop.

One entire month to win prizes, gift cards, books, meet new authors, answer fun questions, and read steamy excerpts from new novels. What better way to fill up June?

On Thursday, June 5, you'll need to head over to TRR's site,, and look for my question about The Road To Comfort. Then, come here for the answer, which appears in the excerpt below:

"Holy shit." A narrow band of destruction was carved through the field of corn by the side of the road and the car was nowhere in sight. He jumped out of the truck and began to comb the ground, looking for tire tracks. Maybe it had already been towed away. Juliette was momentarily forgotten. 

She vaulted out of the truck cab and joined him beside the road. "What happened? Where's my car? Are you sure we're on the right road? The right place?" Her questions shot out of her in machine gun fashion. 

"Yeah, we're at the right place. It seems a small twister touched down after we left last night. Funny, I didn't hear any sirens when the storm came through. Must have been just a bitty one. But, see how the corn is mowed down?" He waved his hand in the general direction of the field. "It tore through the field and then jumped up here onto the highway and roared down the road." 

Juliette's face lost all its color. "You mean, my car just..." she whirled her hand through the air.

"Yep. And if you'd stayed here while I went for my truck, you'd be Dorothy." He imitated her whirl in the air. 

And barely caught her before she hit the ground in a dead faint. 

Here's what My Book Addiction had to say about The Road To Comfort:A deliciously exciting read by Ms. Lower! Such a fun and playful read.

And from The Reading CafeI loved The Road To Comfort, it was an endearing and smoky read. The words flowed, the pages swiped and before I knew it, this book was done and I was believing in love at first sight! Great shorter read one can enjoy while relaxing this summer.

The Akron Beacon Journal had this to say: The Road to Comfort, is the very spicy contemporary fish-out-of-water story of Juliette, a refined Ohio history professor. 

Let's go to the hop and have some fun!