Monday, May 31, 2010

Some really nice pictures


Hello, on Flickr, I found some pictures that stood out to me. The photographer, Paul Dex, gave me permission to post here. He took some inspiring photos. Stunning photographs give me story ideas. Do they ever do that for you?
This picture was taken in Toronto.

City of Lights

Friday, May 28, 2010

Please welcome author Charisma Knight



Just An Average Vampire
Blurb:

After discovering the courage to divorce her abusive husband, Trina Jones rises from her ashes like the legendary Phoenix. Strong-willed and determined, she rebuilds her independence. After her divorce, a string of bad luck sets her back tremendously. Faced with eviction and repossession, Trina becomes frustrated. To make matters worse, she is laid off from her job.

Vampire Cecil McKagan graciously accepts Trina into his home once he discovers her hardship. The bond between them ultimately strengthens, and the pair become lovers. However, past negativities threaten to tear the couple apart...

Excerpt:

The screech jarred Cecil and Trina from their embrace. Cecil sat up and dashed to the window. His keen senses had alerted him to something seconds before hearing the blood-curdling scream. Now, he sensed nothing.

"Was that a cat, or something?"

"It was a vampire."

"Maybe it was Izzy or Ivanna."

"No, the presence I felt was over there. And the scream, well, we vampires make those noises
when enraged. This presence seemed familiar, but I can't bloody place it."Cecil was puzzled, and then an eerie thought crept into his head. What if...?

"Cecil, you're scaring me. Stop looking like that. Are you sure everything is all right?"

"Yes." He returned to the bed and slipped beneath the bedcovers.

"Liar."

"Oh, Trina." Cecil shook his head. He looked at her, sighed, and fell against the large, goose
down pillow. Trina turned on her side to face him, running her fingers through the silky soft hair dusking his broad chest.

"Do we have more secrets, Cecil? That sound, whatever it was, caused my damn skin to crawl. I would bet my life you know what, or who, it was, and this time I would appreciate an honest answer."

"Along with living many lifetimes comes the threat of many enemies. I was a knight in England. This scar came from a werewolf attack, as I was returning from the Crusades. I fought with honor for King Richard, no questions asked."

"When were you made a vampire?"

"Almost a week after my attack. Once I returned, I learned my wife and child had been murdered by the hands of someone I thought to be a comrade. After a day of mourning, my sire introduced herself to me, taking my life as though I'd accept the monster I'd become afterward. I wished for death, but not like this. Nydia was my sire. She was a cold, ruthless vampire who hunted for the thrill of the chase. She is an enemy."

"Why would she be an enemy?"

"Oh, I'm getting to that. Trust me."

"I'm sorry for the loss of your family. Do you regret becoming a vampire?"

"For centuries, yes. Then I met you. Fate has a way of making things happen. If I weren't a vampire, I would never have met you," he said and kissed Trina on the head as she snuggled close, allowing him to continue his story.

****

Somewhere, on the other side of town, the dark shadow flew to an abandoned building next to some train tracks. The smell of revenge rolled off the human she was about to meet in waves. She hated humans, but loved them for the thrill of the hunt and their flesh and blood. This was the way she could take back that which she'd lost centuries ago. Cecil would pay for his rejections and his betrayal.

Buy link: Available at Amira Press

Lara, thank you so much.
-Thanks so much for being my guest here, Charisma, and best to you.

~ Charisma Knight ~
Interracial Erotic Romance Author
~*From The Realm of The Beyond*~

Soul Seduction ~
Available at
http://eirelander-publishing.com

Her Dark Desires~ Daywalker~
The Beast Within now available at
http://sugarnspicepress.com

Available Now
– Just an Average Vampire~
http://amirapress.com

http://charismaknight.yolasite.com
http://charismaknight.blogspot.com
http://twitter.com/CharismaKnight
http://myspace.com/CharismaKnight
http://Charisma_Knight_Banner.gif

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Renaissance costume

Hello, today I’m reviewing a costume in the Renaissance category. I will draw two names from those who comment on this post. The winners will receive a site membership to The Wholesale Costume club. With membership, you save money on Halloween costumes. Please leave your email with your comment. If you win, you will be sent a coupon code to claim your free membership.

Silver and black going so well together, I chose this particular queen ensemble. First thing’s first. I tried it on hoping it would be comfortable. After all, who wants to wear something for hours and end up tugging at it, yanking and shifting in something that causes discomfort? Well, Luckily, this gown was just fine. It slipped on easily in one stretchy piece, but I’m not surprised because I’ve reviewed for this company before. This queen costume, like the 1950s costume I had tried, took about two seconds to get into. I just slid it right over my head.

The delicate, sheer sleeves and their drapes may look like they would be itchy, but they are okay. The sleeves are pretty and add a touch of extra elegance, but after a while wearing the gown, the sleeves feel mildly tight where it gathers in the middle of the arm.

The Velvet and Lycra gown goes to my ankles, and I’m slightly taller than average, 5’7. I can move around in it comfortably, but honestly, I’ll be concerned about hurting those fragile sleeve drapes. To me though, having to be careful not to snag those is worth bothering with because I like the added touch of charm they add.

The silver center panel is stretchy, and thin black laces crisscross over the top of it. Besides the gown, there are two accompanying parts: a flat, Vinyl silver belt that ties around the back, and a black foam crown trimmed in silver with a sheer drape. The crown and belt go on as easily and quickly as the gown, truly a convenient costume to wear.

If I were to wear this costume for Halloween, I’d have to wear leggings underneath to keep warm outside. If I were to wear it to the Renaissance festival, which occurs in the summer where I live, I’d have a ton of fun but might get too hot out in the sun due to the dark color. However, it’s not a heavy costume, but rather pretty light. With an ice cold drink and little trips to stand in the shade, it would work.

So, the best things about this costume are: it’s comfortable overall, easy to put on, and its colors are pretty. Downside? Having to be really careful with those dainty sleeves. Also, it looks like a costume, not an authentic Renaissance gown, and not quite as nice as I expected, but for the price it goes for, it does the job. I'll definitely be looking at Wholesale Costume Club.com when I'm shopping for costumes online. They have a great selection.
Halloween Costumes
Women's Costumes
Adult Queen Costume
I was given this costume by the company for review. There was no financial compensation, and it is my opinion only and has in no way been influenced by the company.

Monday, May 24, 2010

New Release


Hello, my historical romance, Descent Into Darkness is out with Moongypsy Press. Here's a little blurb:
Duncan Amberley has come back from war, fighting Napoleon's men on a ship. Clarissa Hale is a lovely shopkeeper with a great sense of humor. A heroic heart rests inside this insecure, intelligent beauty, and she will be called to prove it. Clarissa and her love are pitted against each other for the sake of their families and some terrible accusations. She will be in constant peril as she gathers evidence to convict Duncan's dangerous brother of a harrowing crime. Duncan's heart breaks when he discovers something about Clarissa's sister. Can their love survive the results of their investigations? They devise a dangerous plan to get to the truth, which brings them into the heart of Napoleon's camp in 1812 Russia as spies. Risking everything, they must get to the truth.

Available here

Friday, May 21, 2010

A warm welcome to author Diana Rubino


Hello, Diana, and thank you for being my guest here!
Now about your funny, romantic novel available with The Wild Rose Press...

What happens when the perfect hero steps out of a romance novel and into the real world?

Pulp sci-fi author, Judi Somers is about to find out. After finishing her 10th novel in her popular Race Parsec series, she runs into childhood friend Felix Varlden. Now a biotech genius, he tells her of his breakthrough discovery that makes it possible for him to create a humanoid in his lab.

Felix sees the project as a chance to bolster an upcoming mission to our nearest inhabited planet. She sees it as a chance to have all her fantasies come true­—a real-live version of her series hero. "Leo" is perfect...but his perfection is driving her crazy. What happens when Judi realizes who her hero really is?

(Pages 272) Spicy

Excerpt:

“Now tell me what’s so urgent. I hope this leaded coffee you’re pumping me with will keep me awake.” He drummed his fingers on the cup.

“Felix, don’t be shocked, now.” She sat across from him. “We’ve been through a lot together, haven’t we?” She clasped her palms together. They were starting to sweat. A lot.

“I can see this is going to be an all-nighter. Let me guess. You’ve been selling these books like hot dogs at a Yankee game, so I know you can’t be having financial problems.”

“No, it’s not financial.”

He lifted a brow. “You’re being stalked by a jealous ex? Or a wacko fan?”

“No, none of my exes care enough to be jealous, and fans don’t get wacko until you run out of freebies at signings.” She took a sip of milk.

“You got me. What can it possibly be?” He gulped his latte.

“It’s about…I don’t even know what to call him. Your creation.”

“What about him?”

She drew in a deep breath and blurted it out, “I want him.”

available now

Thanks so much for, Diana. I loved your book.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Costume review



Hello, as a writer of historical fiction, I was intrigued with the thought of reviewing vintage costumes. It's my pleasure to discuss a 1950s sock hop costume sent to me by the company Costume Discounters. After requesting the Nifty Fifties Costume for Adults, it arrived within a few days.

Well, on with the review!
This costume brings to mind the youthful fifties. Just putting it on had me in a playful mood. I felt like a teenager again! Even though I was born decades after the golden age of sock hops, I felt almost transported in time, slipping into the clothes of an earlier generation.
Go here link: Costumes
The costume is comfortable to wear with its stretchy pink and white, short-sleeved striped top. It molds to the figure but has maneuverability. That’s a good thing because if I ever want to wear it to a Halloween costume party where there’s dancing, I won’t have any trouble at all moving about. It can be lowered to be an off-the-shoulder top, or, if I'm so inclined, slipped up to cover the shoulders.
The felt pink skirt was just as comfortable to wear, attached to the top, having an elastic waistline. I just pulled it right on over my head in about two seconds. I really liked the narrow silver, sequined trimming that wrapped around my waist and fell in a graceful swoop from my hip to the soft, white puddle stitched near the bottom.
When the time comes to wash the costume, it will have to be done by hand in the sink or with a soapy sponge. The trimming and poodle are a bit delicate. Without those, though, the outfit is pretty sturdy.
To summarize, this costume is cute, fits well, and is fun to wear. I’d recommend it. Now all I need to do is get a chiffon pink scarf to tie around my ponytail, some bobby sox, and a pair of saddle shoes, or even plain white flats, and I’ll be set.

I was given this costume by the company for review. There was no financial compensation, and it is my opinion only and has in no way been influenced by the company.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

My blogmania winners

Hello, everyone, thank you for stopping by and taking part in the very fun blogmania. It's nice to make your acquaintance. I wish I could give you all a prize, but I had to choose two winners at random. I assigned a number to each person who entered my giveaway and used random.org to generate two numbers. So, I'd like to announce who won! For the gently used book, Breathing Life Into Your Characters, the winner is Melissa (Books R Us) and for an electronic copy of my time travel novel Romeo vs. Juliet II: The Questrist, the winner is Mervi.

I'll email the winners. If you've won, please respond within 48 hours, or I'll have to draw another name.

Thanks again for playing, and I hope to see you all again. Sincerely, Laura