First Dates

Recently, I ran across a website detailing what to do and not to do on a first date.

It has been a looong time since I've been on a date of any kind but it got me thinking.

Dinner and a movie is the most common first date idea, at least it's the one that first comes to mind. But if you think about it, it's not exactly conducive to getting to know someone. A mean dinner! Ack. I'm immediately tense just thinking about it. Don't order anything that may spill, drip or fly off the plate. Spaghetti is out, so is salad! Why do they make the lettuce leaves so large?

And then the movie? Yeah, sitting in the dark with your date and a hundred other people is not my idea of a good way to get to know someone. It is, however, a good way to avoid talking if the dinner conversation lagged... but perhaps that's another blog all together: When First Dates go bad. ; )

So, what's a good idea for a first date?

A picnic? This might be okay... except for the eating thing again.

Miniature golf? Now this sounds good. Even if you suck, it's fun, gives you something to do and an opportunity to talk. So as long as your date isn't uber competitive, this one is a go on my list.

Now this is the ultimate quick date... almost like a test date. I mean how long does it take to drink a cup of coffee? I suppose that depends upon how good the date is going.

Ok, so what is your idea of an ideal first date? Leave your answer and I'll pick one lucky commenter on Dec 7th to win a copy of First Date. (If you already have one, it'll make a nice gift for a loved one.)

And now for your Monday morning pick-me-up:

*ahem* sorry, speechless.

Just in time for the holidays

The Wild Rose Press gathered recipes from it's writers and put together a cookbook full of yummy goodness.

The best thing? The e-cookbook is free!

Check it out here!

Yes, I do have a recipe in there. ; )

My Thanksgiving horoscope.

Because I'm too stuffed to write!

Thanksgiving Horoscope for Virgo

You're the sign most likely to bake up elaborate dishes and make beautiful centerpieces.

Your signature dish: Turkey, cooked to perfection

Your signature dessert: A pumpkin tiramisu that you thought up

This holiday: Resist the urge to clean up - unless you're hosting Thanksgiving at your own place!

Well, my turkey is exceptional, but my chocolate mousse pie is my signature dessert. Hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful!

How to cook a turkey for Thanksgiving.

1 Go buy a turkey
2 Take a drink of whisky
3 Put turkey in the oven
4 Take another 2 drinks of whisky
5 Set the degree at 375 ovens
6 Take 3 more whiskys of drink
7 Turk the bastey
8 Whisky another bottle of get
9 Ponder the meat thermometer
10 Glass yourself a pour of whisky
11 Bake the whisky for 4 hours
12 Take the oven out of the turkey
13 Floor the turkey up off of the pick
14 Turk the carvey
15 Get yourself another scottle of botch
16 Tet the sable and pour yourself a glass of turkey
17 Bless the dinner and pass out

Monday's Pick-me-up

I saw this picture on someone else's blog quite some time ago and loved it so much I saved it. Now I'm sharing it with you. Sometimes, all you need is a look.

Book Review: LEGEND HUNTER by Jennifer McKenzie

Sitting at your computer, reading this review, it's fairly easy to dismiss the legend of Bigfoot, but when you're deep in the forest with civilization miles away, the possibility that Bigfoot exists is not so easy to disallow.

Jennifer McKenzie takes you deep into Humboldt County and the world of the legend hunter with skill and finesse. Her vivid descriptions had me longing to experience the vast expanse of the forest in person. So much so that I actually googled how much houses in Humboldt cost. In case you're interested: too much for me!

The characters are complex and you'll be rooting for a happy ever after long before you know if it's possible. Jennifer weaves a mystery into the plot with deft hands. I didn't guess who did it until shortly before the characters did and, for me, that's always a big plus.

Legend Hunter is available at Amazon or Fictionwise.

or visit Jennifer's website.

Here's a blurb to entice you.

Bigfoot is a fraud and the people who hunt for him are either fools or liars. Or so Kiera McConnel believes, and she should know since she caught her father fabricating evidence. So, when Ben Harmon, an experienced paranormal investigator shows up, she greets him with the business end of her shotgun. No matter how famous or attractive the man may be, Kiera is not going to help him.

Ben Harmon is sure the new sightings of Bigfoot will lead to a scientific breakthrough and no gun-toting skeptic, even a sexy one, is going to stop him. He manages to convince Kiera to lead him on his quest, but she won’t reveal the secrets he knows she keeps.

Murder intrudes and suddenly, the hunt for Bigfoot becomes the hunt for a killer. Ben and Kiera must discover the truth before the murderer strikes again.

Witty Wednesday

The Darwins are out!!!!

Yes, it's that magical time of year again when the Darwin Awards are bestowed, honoring the least evolved among us.

Here is the glorious winner:

1. When his 38 caliber revolver failed to fire at his intended victim during a hold-up in Provo, Utah would-be robber Jason Ellison did something that can only inspire wonder. He peered down the barrel and tried the trigger again. This time it worked.
And now, the honorable mentions:

2. The chef at a hotel in Switzerland lost a finger in a meat cutting machine and after a little shopping around, submitted a claim to his insurance company. The company expecting negligence sent out one of its men to have a look for himself. He tried the machine and he also lost a finger. The chef's claim was approved.

3. A man who shoveled snow for an hour to clear a space for his car during a blizzard in Chicago returned with his vehicle to find a woman had taken the space. Understandably, he shot her.

4. After stopping for drinks at an illegal bar, a Zimbabwean bus driver found that the 20 mental patients he was supposed to be transporting from Harare to Bulawayo had escaped... Not wanting to admit his incompetence, the driver went to a nearby bus stop and offered everyone waiting there a free ride. He then delivered the passengers to the mental hospital, telling the staff that the patients were very excitable and prone to bizarre fantasies.. The deception wasn't discovered for 3 days.

5.. A teenager was in the hospital recovering from serious head wounds received from an oncoming train. When asked how he received the injuries, the lad told police that he was simply trying to see how close he could get his head to a moving train before he was hit.

6. A man walked into a Louisiana Circle-K, put a $20 bill on the counter, and asked for change. When the clerk opened the cash drawer, the man pulled a gun and asked for all the cash in the register, which the clerk promptly provided. The man took the cash from the clerk and fled, leaving the $20 bill on the counter. The total amount of cash he got from the drawer... $15. [If someone points a gun at you and gives you money, is a crime committed?]

7. Seems an Arkansas guy wanted some beer pretty badly.. He decided that he'd just throw a cinder block through a liquor store window, grab some booze, and run. So he lifted the cinder block and heaved it over his head at the window. The cinder block bounced back and hit the would-be thief on the head, knocking him unconscious. The liquor store window was made of Plexiglas. The whole event was caught on videotape.

8. As a female shopper exited a South Carolina convenience store, a man grabbed her purse and ran. The clerk called 911 immediately, and the woman was able to give them a detailed description of the snatcher. Within minutes, the police apprehended the snatcher. They put him in the car and drove back to the store. The thief was then taken out of the car and told to stand there for a positive ID. To which he replied, "Yes, officer, that's her. That's the lady I stole the purse from."

9.. The Ann Arbor News crime column reported that a man walked into a Burger King in Ypsilanti , Michigan at 5 A.M., flashed a gun, and demanded cash. The clerk turned him down because he said he couldn't open the cash register without a food order. When the man ordered onion rings, the clerk said they weren't available for breakfast. The man, frustrated, walked away. [*A 5-STAR STUPIDITY AWARD WINNER]

10. When a man attempted to siphon gasoline from a motor home parked on an Atlanta street, he got much more than he bargained for. Police arrived at the scene to find a very sick man curled up next to a motor home near spilled sewage. A police spokesman said that the man admitted to trying to steal gasoline, but he plugged his siphon hose into the motor home's sewage tank by mistake. The owner of the vehicle declined to press charges saying that it was the best laugh he'd ever had.

Monday's Pick-me-up

Not sure if you've all noticed, but I've been a little hit and miss lately on this blog. My inconsistency is due to some pretty big life changes and I'm thankful I usually schedule posts a month in advance or you would have heard crickets from this site for most of the last month. Not only that, I've neglected all of your blogs too. It's my goal to jump back on the bandwagon starting today.

So without further ado, and because we could all use a Monday pick up, (and let me tell you, I'm not in to cowboys but I wouldn't turn this one down) here's your hunk.

Book Review: HIS SHIP, HER FANTASY by Emma Lai

The concept of this book intrigued me long before I had the opportunity to read it. I wasn't disappointed.

His Ship Her Fantasy is the first book in the Mates of the Guardian series. Emma Lai writes well and I was immediately drawn to Elle, her heroine and a junior engineer on board a space craft.

It's difficult to review a short story without giving too much away so let me say His Ship Her Fantasy is a sweet book and will leave you smiling.

Here is a Blurb:

Ellie Woods is in love…with a ship. When an argument with the ship results in a bump on the head, she finds herself in the strong arms of Alastair. But, who is he, and where did he come from?

Alastair has loved Ellie from afar for years, but duty has kept him from revealing himself to her. When a grave threat reveals his true identity, he hopes that Ellie will choose reality over fantasy.

Emma Lai's second book in this series, His Hope Her Salvation will be released on Dec 16th of this year from Wild Rose Press.

His Ship Her Fantasy is available at the Wild Rose Press. Find out more about Emma and her work here!

Witty Wednesday

Interview with Cari Quinn

Every once in a while, you meet someone online and just click. It was that way with Cari. Not only is she talented, she's kind, funny and one hellava writer.

Cari's first Scarlet, FULL DISCLOSURE, released last Friday.

Here's a blurb: Thirty-eight-year-old divorcee Holly Burrows has had enough of battery-operated love. Prompted by an ad left at her law office, she investigates Hunk Du Jour, a website designed to foster ‘adult connections’. After weeks of sexy emails and phone calls with surf hunk Kent, she's ready to test their chemistry in person. But first she has to get through lunch with her colleague Alex, a man with a brain as agile as his body. When their consultation ends with a bang, she barely remembers the man she'd lined up for dessert. Now she thinks she's juggling two hot young guys. How can she choose between her two gorgeous cubs – and why do they remind her of each other?

Without further ado, here's Cari.

~Every writer dreams of the day his or her book is published. Can you tell us a little about your publishing journey?

It was a long and winding road that started on a dark and stormy night…

LOL, couldn’t resist. Like many writers, I started writing as soon as I could hold a pencil, but writing isn’t my first love. Or my biggest. Growing up, my dream was to be a singer. Music is the one thing I find even more powerful than the written word…stories set to a melody, c’mon, THAT’S nirvana! But eventually I realized a singing career wasn’t in the stars for me, so I focused on my other passion: writing. I finished my first book in 2007, and that book is currently being retooled for the thirty thousandth time. ;) Full Disclosure is actually the fourth project I finished.

~Ah, another thing we have in common. I wanted to be a singer too… only I can’t carry a tune in a bucket. That kind of puts a damper on things. I for one am glad you focused on your writing.

What would be your one piece of advice for anyone interested in getting a book published?

Write. Don’t stop writing. Even when the muse scampers off to a tropical island without leaving a forwarding address. Even when you think the story’s not working or wonder if anyone will care what you have to say. Only through the repetition of writing will you ever get a chance at seeing your dream come true. Once you finish one story, start the next. Don’t let one book be the sum total of your life’s output, unless you think you may have the next Gone With The Wind on your hands.

Believe me, I know of what I speak when I say this…I worked on the same book from 1991-2007. Not continuously, of course, and the story changed a dozen times. But at its core, it was the same book. And I’m revising it yet again, though at least this time it’s only one segment of my arsenal of WIPs.

~Good advice. How did you family/friends react to your decision to become a writer?

Most of them have known I wrote as long as they’ve known me. I never really kept it a secret, and ever since I started passing around my stories to friends in high school, writing has been a constant in my life. My mom always encouraged me, especially after discussing my writing career with a woman who was known as a bit of a psychic. Once that woman said that I was destined to “make it,” my mother refused to listen to my doubts. Wish I’d been that easily convinced. ;) And my best friend has been around since my high school days, so she’s been reading my work for close to twenty years now.

~Support like that is priceless. How did you start writing erotic romance?

My first foray into steamy writing was an attempt to write for Harlequin Blaze, as I thought a 60K story would be a manageable size for me to cut my teeth on. So far, I have one of those about to go on submission again, another in progress, and my NaNoWriMo project, which has been brewing for about a year and a half. But Blaze steamy isn’t true erotic romance, and I don’t know if I would have tried it if not for my CP, Helen Hardt. Through reading her work, I became more acquainted with the genre and decided to see if I could give it a shot. She always praised my sex scenes, so I figured, why not? I started Full Disclosure and put it aside for awhile, but it stayed at the back of my mind. I love challenges, and I really wanted to see if I could write a scorching, no-holds-barred book.

~And you did! What inspired Full Disclosure?

I’ve always found the subject of internet dating fascinating. I’ve made several friends online that I’ve then met in person, and I also met a guy online eons ago. Some of the dynamics have changed, but what hasn’t is the deep connection that can be forged online. Something about the seeming anonymity allows people to feel free to express their truest self..and in Holly and Kent’s case, their deepest sexual desires. The story blossomed from my original conception of it, but the dating site behind the story, Hunk Du Jour, proved such an interesting backdrop to me that I just completed the followup story to Full Disclosure. This one is about Jenny, the webmistress of the site. Recently, I started plotting a third book set in the same world.

~It sounds like you’re going to be busy and we’ll have a lot of reading to do. Are you anything like your heroine?

I wish, LOL. Holly’s fiercely independent, so I guess in that sense we’re alike. She’s also very stubborn, and anyone that knows me knows I tend to be a little intractable when it comes to certain things. We’re also both big sports fans, though her sport of choice is hockey and mine is basketball. But as far as the hugely successful law career and her chutzpah in going after what she wants, even if what she wants is a very hot, much younger man…well, that’s not me. Not yet. But I’ll never say never. ;)

~I love reading about women with chutzpah. Okay, now for a slightly different question. If your hero and heroine went out, where would they go and what would they do?

Are they actually going out? As in leaving the bedroom? LOL Because as anyone who has read Full Disclosure can attest, Holly and Alex tend to like to stick close to the bed. Or the truck. Oops, I meant close to home. ;)

But if they were actually on a date…they’d probably go out for a low-key dinner at their favorite pizza place before heading out to a Sabres hockey game. Refer to the previous paragraph for their idea of a nightcap…

~LOL Sounds fun… the hockey game and the nightcap. Do you have anything new in the works?

Where should I start? I have 5 current WIPs, 2 completed stories that need to be edited ASAP to go on submission, and at least 2 other sequels waiting in the wings. That’s not even including all the other ideas in my “someday” file! As my awesome CP, Tara Leigh Coons, always says, I’ll never have to worry about running out of projects!

~That’s quite a list. It’s nice to know there will be lots more Cari Quinn novels to come. Do you listen to music while writing? If so, what kind?

I can’t think without music, which kind of relates to question #1, And not just music, blisteringly LOUD music. Somehow it becomes white noise for me to get into the zone with my characters. Sometimes I’ll realize exactly how loud the music in my headphones is and marvel that I haven’t gone deaf yet, but it’s a bad habit I can’t seem to shake.

What kind? You name it and I’ll listen to it. My current playlist for my NaNoWriMo Blaze, Heat Lightning, contains everything from Jo Dee Messina to the Pussycat Dolls to Marilyn Manson to Loreena McKennitt. I honestly don’t have a preferred genre, though the tone of the songs I like to listen to seems to shift from book to book.

~That is quite a variety…. And you know what they say about variety? What is the most exciting part of being a published writer?

Knowing I could do it, at least once. LOL Almost immediately my thoughts turned to making sure I avoided the sophomore slump with my next book, but those couple minutes of pure excitement were awesome.

~That moment you first see your book for sale is electric. And then you go back to work. What is the least exciting?

Worrying that people will think my book sucks. Sucking has its place in erotic fiction, just not in a book review. ;)

~LOL I almost spit out my coffee. So true and I think all writers share that fear.
Where can we find your books?

Full Disclosure just released this past Friday at The Wild Rose Press Wilder Roses: )

Other book news can be found on my blog:

Thanks for the interview, Lynne…this was a ton of fun!

It was fun for me too, Cari! Thank you.

Book Review: MONTEGO LAY by Helen Hardt

Montego Lay is the first book I've read by writer, Helen Hardt, but it won't be the last.

From the first page, you're drawn into a sultry Jamaican paradise and seduced along with Lisa, by Ace, the more-than-sexy instructor at Pleasure Cove.

Helen's writing is smooth and her characters well-developed. The story is captivating and the sex steamy! What more could you want?

I highly recommend.

Here is a blurb:

Vacationing at a Montego Bay nude resort, Lisa Brooks finds herself volunteering in a bondage demonstration on the beach. She’d like to continue the instructions with the Jamaican native, but the gorgeous resort employee has other duties to perform. Though disappointed, Lisa accompanies a friend to an erotic casino night where the chips are free and redeemable for sex. A night for a mysterious encounter? If only she could buy the island hottie she really wants.


Ace fingered white rope that looked like her mother’s clothesline. The idea of being bound by rope frightened her. Scarves. Scarves were soft, silky, and sexy. Wouldn’t they work better?


“Yes, sweet?”

“C-could you use scarves for the demonstration? I think I’d be more comfortable.”

“Ah, such a novice.” He smiled again, and her skin tingled. Damn, he was gorgeous. “Scarves aren’t safe, love. They’re difficult to untie once they’re knotted, and they can cut off circulation quite easily.”

Lisa’s cheeks warmed. Novice? Hell, she was a complete child when it came to this stuff.

“But don’t be scared, sweet,” Ace said. “I know what I’m doin’.”


“Anyone in the lifestyle will tell you the master takes full responsibility for his submissive’s safety. A good master knows to watch for circulation or breathin’ problems, signs of hyperventilation, and the like.”

“Really.” Lisa shook her head. “I had no idea.”

He chuckled. “That’s becoming clear. But no worries, sweet. I won’t harm you.” He held up the white rope. “Nylon is the best rope to use for bondage. It’s strong, it unties easily, and it’s generally comfortable.”

An image of her mother tying her father in clothesline shot into Lisa’s head, and she stifled a laugh.

“Did I say something funny?” Ace asked.

“No, no. It’s just...that looks like my mom’s old clothesline.”

His white teeth glimmered. “Not clothesline, sweet. That’d be cotton, which isn’t good rope for bondage. It retains too much moisture.”

“Why would that be a problem?”

“Germs, sweet.”

The crowd “mmmhmm’d” in a din, and Lisa felt like an idiot. Clearly, there was a lot she didn’t know about bondage.

Find out more about Helen here. Montego Lay is available at The Wilder Rose Press.

Better late than...

I'm sorry, guys. It's been a tough week and I've been relying on automatic post. Argh.

Today I am over at the awesome Lia Slater's blog. Please come and check out my interview and comment for a chance to win a copy of First Date.

Witty Wednesday

Monday's Pick-me-up

Really, do I need to add anything?