Monthly Archives: November 2014

An anthology is born

New CoverLast October I finally succumbed to peer pressure. For years now I’ve been hearing from writer friends about the Romantic Times Convention. Years ago it was just known as the place where people got dressed up and met the male models who graced the covers of romance novels. It was a reader con. Being a writer of sweet Regency romances, I really didn’t think I’d fit in.

Then I started self-publishing, and not just my sweet Regencies. I published a (for me) hot Regency-set paranormal romance, and I was planning on releasing a Medieval fantasy series which were also hotter than what I’d been writing earlier. With the self-publishing, I needed to spread my reach to more readers and I wasn’t entirely sure how to do that.

That’s when I remembered this conference all my friends had talked about. And, they said, there were now more talks geared towards writers as well. So, I gave in and signed up to attend RT the following May.

It was a time to remember! Oh, my, goodness! The lines! The people! The booze on Bourbon Street (because it just so happened to be in New Orleans this past year)! And the books! There were books floating around everywhere. Yes, there were some great talks, and I was even invited to sit in on a panel on self-publishing, which was loads of fun!

I threw myself into the convention 100%, toting around and giving away free copies of my just-released Medieval fantasy series to just about anybody who stopped to talk to me.  I went from a quiet, lonely writer holed up in her writing space to a chatting, laughing, out-going creature who I’m not entirely sure I’ve ever met before. But I had fun!

The convention goes out with a bang—a huge book signing/sale. Of course, I’d signed up too late to get a seat on the floor with all the other self-pubbed authors, but I wasn’t going to let that stop me from attending. I went to play fan-girl and to support my friends who had managed to get in. But, as with everything else that week, there was a huge, long line just to get into the signing.

To pass the time, I turned around and started chatting with the two nice women behind me. They were friends who’d come from Texas to the convention and, it turned out, also writers. Kishan Paul and Valerie Twombly were two of the nicest people I’d met the whole conference. We happily exchanged social media info and tweeted to each other. On-line, they introduced me to another friend of theirs, Aubrey Wynne, who happens to like reading the kind of books I write (she became a fantastic fan of my writing and my blog, as well as a friend).

Over the summer, they contacted me to ask if I might be interested in joining with them in putting together an anthology of short stories about love in odd places. I thought the idea was fantastic, so I happily hopped in. I dropped the book was writing (which I’m still trying to finish up, argh!) and spent some time writing a short story prequel to one of my favorite books I’d written, An Exotic Heir.

The hero of the Regency romance is an Anglo-Indian who has been passed over for a promotion one too many times. He decides to get revenge by making his boss’s daughter fall in love with him. That works out great until he realizes that he has fallen in love with her as well. It’s a story of revenge and discrimination set in Calcutta. So what could be more fun and interesting than the write the story of how this hero’s mother, a good Indian girl from a wealthy family, met and fell in love with an Englishman?

The topic fit in nicely with the theme of the anthology (under—and sometimes in—a mango tree in 18th century Calcutta isn’t your usual setting for a romance) and was so much fun to write since I happened to be in that very city at the time. Now, as we finalize the book and get everything set for its release, I can’t help but be grateful that I decided to bow to peer pressure and to make the most of my time at RT.

Some day I’ll actually meet these fantastic women again face-to-face (sadly not at RT next May as I’ve got conflicting responsibilities), but soon I hope because they are the nicest, warmest, and hardest working people I’ve had the honor to know—aside from being great writers.

For now our anthology, Love Least Expected is available for pre-order. To find out where its available and more about the stories in the book and all of the authors who wrote them click here.

Release Day! Just in Time for a Highland Christmas by Dawn Marie Hamilton — Read the Prologue

I’m very excited to announce the release of my new holiday novella from the Highland Gardens series, Just in Time for a Highland Christmas

Just in Time for a Highland Christmas
A Highland Gardens Novella
Book #2.5

e-Book available from Amazon
for an introductory 99 pennies
until December 1st.


Can a determined brownie craft a perfect match in time for Christmas?

When the Chief of Clan MacLachlan travels to the stronghold of his feuding neighbors to fetch his betrothed, she is gone. A year later, she is still missing. Making life more vexing, a band of reivers are stealing clan cattle, leaving behind destruction. Archibald MacLachlan determines to capture them and administer harsh punishment.

Though once in love with the man, Isobell Lamont refuses to wed her clan’s enemy. After running away, she joins the band of reivers set on revenge.

Can Archibald forgive the raven-haired beauty? Will a journey through time bring them together for a Highland Christmas?

Just in Time for a Highland Christmas, a Scottish historical time travel romance, is 101 pages of Highlanders, scheming faeries, a mischievous brownie, magic, adventure, and romance set in 16th century Scotland and the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.

Read the prologue… 

Fir-wood, Strathlachlan, Scotland, 1511

They weren’t alone on the land. Branches rustled and cracked, the sound amplified by moist Highland air. Archibald signaled the men to silence.

A lone rider broke from an adjacent clump of trees, glanced around, then galloped through the amber grass, leaning low against the stallion’s black neck. The slight figure looked over a shoulder once before darting into the wood at the far edge of the meadow and disappearing through autumnal foliage.

Archibald released a loud hiss. The path the fool had taken at risk to both horse and rider was nothing more than a narrow game trail, a dangerous track to approach at such speed.

“Ach, that ragged lad rides well,” the redheaded Duncan exclaimed.

Archibald eased back in the saddle and threw his cousin a sideways glance. “He rides a fine piece of horseflesh, I grant you that. He is likely one of the Campbell’s rash, young grandsons.”

“Without guards, and on MacLachlan land? Nae Campbell would dress in such tatters.”

Duncan’s aghast expression brought a smile along with a forgotten memory to Archibald. As green lads, he and his twin brother Patrick had dressed in servants’ castoff garments and snuck away from Castle Lachlan for a jaunt in the Fir-wood. They later received a memorable scalping when Da caught them roaming about without escort.

“Must be a Campbell lad unaware of the border to our land. I am sure he will feel his father’s disfavor across his backside before this day is through. That is, if he avoids breaking his neck first.”

“Aye. For a fact, Chief.” Duncan laughed. A hearty sound that never failed to cheer Archibald.

Poor lad. Duncan braved his temper on this frustrating journey. He’d owe the man a boon upon their return to Castle Lachlan after they fetched Archibald’s bride.

“Let us be on our way, I want my lady ensconced within our keep before winter sets in.”

He reined his horse to the left toward the more traveled trail through the Fir-wood, eager to reach Toward Keep, the stronghold of the Lamonts. Duncan rode at his side as captain while the rest of the Lèine-chneas, his hand chosen guard, followed a short distance behind.

The image of laughing violet eyes urged Archibald to a faster pace. He couldn’t wait to hold the raven-haired Isobell in his arms again, inhale her intoxicating scent, caress her ivory skin, and kiss her pouty lips.

* * *

The sun set on the horizon. Crimson colors faded to mauve, a beautiful end to the day after its wet and trying start. Isobell Lamont spurred her horse to greater speed. She would escape the dictates of her overbearing father, even if she might die in so doing.

Her aunt in Glasgow would surely hide her, if Isobell avoided capture. Before she reached the burgh, however, she must cross the land of her unwanted MacLachlan betrothed, the hated Campbells, and other clans she didn’t ken. She reveled in the knowledge her journey might be fraught with peril. She’d always dreamt of doing something truly adventurous.

The doing is never as grand as the dream. With a shake of the head, she ignored the nagging voice admonishing her and rode into the wind, the scent of fir in the air and an invigorating chill on her cheeks.

After risking discovery by crossing yet another open meadow, she eased the reins and sought the wood. Thank the good Lord the weather had cleared. She coaxed Dealanach Dubh into the shelter of a thick cluster of firs and slid from the stallion’s massive back.

“Good lad,” she crooned as she patted his sweaty flank, a horsy odor prickling her nose.

Isobell’s stomach rumbled. Should have raided the larder before running off in a rage. Dealanach Dubh could graze on the sparse grasses, but what could she eat? Would she never learn to think before reacting to Da in anger?

She’d needed to escape, though, before Archibald MacLachlan arrived to fetch her. She wouldn’t marry her clan’s enemy even if she once thought herself in love with the man. It didn’t matter that his once-beloved silver eyes, cleft chin, and chestnut hair still haunted her dreams, or that the thought of his warrior’s body made her feel achy. She squeezed her eyes tight, refusing to shed a tear over a man who wasn’t what she once believed him to be. Grrrr. And Da intended to force her hand. He’d signed the betrothal agreement with the blessing of the king, giving her no choice but to run away. What had changed Da’s mind?

She jerked her eyes open and stared off into the wood. For the past year, he’d raged about the evils perpetrated by Archibald and his clan. She couldn’t wed such a despicable man even if Da changed his mind and thought the match a good one. The men’s plans would come to naught. She leaned against a large tree and smiled. Soon she would be in Glasgow, away from their schemes.

Wrapped within the false security of the dense trees, men’s voices startled her. Everything within stilled. What have I stumbled upon?

After tying Dealanach Dubh to a branch, she crept closer to the voices, taking care to stay well hidden in the trees. In a wee clearing, a group of ratty men sat around a fire deep in discussion. She worried her bottom lip. Had she inadvertently stumbled into grave danger?

A sudden change in wind direction blew acrid wood smoke into her face. She sniffled, wrinkled her nose, and when she suppressed a sneeze, sagged against a tree in relief.

Gloaming was upon them, and Isobell strained to better see the men. Reprobates all. She started to scoot away— Wait. She recognized a few of them. Lamont warriors who’d left the clan in disgrace and, if rumors were true, taken up with Da’s banished henchman Malcolm Maclay. The warriors must have joined this band of ruffians after Maclay died during a fight with one of Archibald’s men.

She leaned forward to better hear the conversation. Perhaps glean something of import.

Most of their words were spoken in muttered whispers. With a frown, she edged closer, but then had second thoughts. Now would be a good time to leave before they learned of her presence. Too late. One man rose and paced toward her hiding place. Isobell fingered the dirk in her belt, ready to flee, but when he strode back to his cohorts, she held position.

“If we raid the MacLachlan encampment on the northeast border, we can make an escape across the disputed land with at least five head,” the man spoke in a deep voice.

Humph. They were planning—

A large hand gripped her shoulder from behind and yanked her around. She froze, breath stuck in her throat, too shocked by the familiar face to pull free her blade.

“What have we here?”

Just in Time for a Highland Christmas available HERE.

~Dawn Marie

Sneak Peek – The Gift of My Mate by Caryn Moya Block

GOMM copyComing November 17th – Available for Pre-Order Now

The Gift of My Mate

A Siberian Volkov Pack Romance

By Caryn Moya Block

Sneak Peek One:

 “I want something from you, too,” Margot said.

“You, woman, are playing with fire,” Mathis said pushing into her hand.

“Then make me burn…”

 

Sneak Peek Two:

 “Are you out of your mind?” Margot asked, her hands on her hips. She finally had a mate and the first thing he wanted to do was get himself killed. “Let’s make a run for it. Your family can cover for us.”

Margot Martin has been searching for her mate for years. When she couldn’t find a mate in her pack, she started looking for a mate in the human population, earning her a rather shady reputation. Now one of her human admirers has turned stalker and Margot can only turn to the head of pack security, Mathis Levesque, for help.

Mathis Levesque has known from the first moment he saw Margot Martin that she was his mate, a secret he has kept from her, for her own protection. A member of the Betas council’s “Sable Guard” has made him more than one enemy and Mathis didn’t want Margot to become a target. Now she is stalked by a human business man and Mathis must protect the one woman he can’t give up.

Available for Pre-Order Now at:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-gift-of-my-mate/id926650781?mt=11

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/482810

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-gift-of-my-mate-caryn-moya-block/1120495305?ean=2940046216349

http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-gift-of-my-mate

http://www.amazon.com/Gift-Mate-Siberian-Volkov-Romance-ebook/dp/B00O8A3ZAU/

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gift-Mate-Siberian-Volkov-Romance-ebook/dp/B00O8A3ZAU/

 

 

 

Release Day! My Dark Highlander is here!

2nd book in the Kilted Athletes Through Time series

2nd book in the Kilted Athletes Through Time series

November brings a hint of the winter to come, voting day, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving Day, and my birthday.

Another birthday? Time is fleeting, so I am happy to announce the release in both ebook and print of My Dark Highlander. This book is the 2nd in my Kilted Athletes through Time series and is a Scottish time travel romance.

The 1st book in the series

The 1st book in the series

The Book Blurb of My Dark Highlander

Stranded in 1603 Scotland, veterinarian Jenny Morgan is eager to get home to New England. Hiding her ability to read auras, a powerful witch comes to her aid. All Jenny will miss is the man who stole her heart, one dark night.

Laird Gavin Sinclair has a missing brother, a murderous father, and a dark-eyed beauty on his mind. When Jenny returns to a dangerous future, he sets aside his obligations and searches for her at the New England Highland Games. Jealousy and lust ravage his dark soul, until he and Jenny fight evil together.

Waterfalls are important story aspects in this series

Waterfalls are important story aspects in this series

I am excited that the book is now available, and I hope you will consider ordering it in either ebook or print.

Buy Links

Amazon ebook

Nook

Smashwords

All Romance

Amazon Print