Saturday, December 10, 2016

Saturdays In Indy: The Struggle For Time To Write

You know, I wish I could tell you it's only around the holidays that I struggle to find time to write, but that's simply not true. Writing a blog post these days seems like a major accomplishment. Heck, writing a Facebook post needs its own calendar. Don't ever let anyone tell you that working a full time job outside the home AND writing is easy. Either they have a job where they can sit there for eight hours and do nothing but write, or they're lying to you.

I had one of those jobs. Well, maybe not EIGHT hours, but four or five consistently, about ninety-five percent of the days I worked. And I was banging out two or more books a month while writing as Tara Rose. And I wasn't happy, because I had so little freedom in what I wrote under that pen name. So there are trade-offs. But boy howdy do I miss all that lovely time during the day to write!

Occasionally, I still have time to write during the day, but I have to be careful now. Things are different. So these days, most of my writing has to occur in the wee hours of the morning, Monday through Friday, and on weekends.

Anyone with a roof over their head and at least one other person living with them, or that they care for, knows how difficult it can be to cram EVERYTHING you have to do into just two days. I'm lucky in that my husband loves to grocery shop. It's true. He also is willing to help out around the house with dishes, laundry, repairs, etc. And he does it without complaining or giving me grief about it. I'm VERY blessed in that respect.

Also, our daughter is grown. She still lives with us, but she's pretty self-sufficient now. That helps a great deal.

However ... let's take this morning, for example. Saturdays and Sundays are my two days to sleep past my usual waking time of four in the morning. Do I usually sleep past that time? Not always. Especially when I wake up and my mind starts ticking off the things I need to do.

Today's list: Christmas cards, reorganize the bookshelves in my writing room, and clean up the mess of Clinique stuff in my drawers in the bathroom. Yeah. That's the kind of shit racing through my head at five in the morning on a Saturday. All legit things I need to do. All things I've put off for weeks now while we readied this house for Christmas. All things I put off trying to squeeze in writing time. All things that no one else will do but me.

The time wasters image is cute, but they're not truly time wasters. They're things people do, every day, and ones which I need to fit in around the writing. I really don't like taking months to get the next book to Evernight. I really don't. And like I said at the beginning, I can't blame the holidays, because this has become the pattern throughout 2016.

And I wonder why I have next to no time at all to hang out on Facebook...

Which brings me to my next point...

It's a sad but true fact of life that the authors who are able to hang out on Facebook all day, post anything and everything, and who have time to do such lovely things like hold constant giveaways, and send endless swag to their fans, sell better than the rest of us. There. I said it. Because it's true.

I've noticed readers drop off from interacting with me, and from pimping me, as my time on social media has had to take a nosedive. And you can't imagine how much that stings. It's difficult, from where I'm sitting NOT to take that as a way of saying "If you can't give me free stuff, I don't want to talk to you or support you any longer." OUCH.

It's no secret to anyone by now that these past three years have been very difficult for us, financially. We're crawling out of the hole now, by the grace of God. But it will take time. And I can do nothing about the job I have in terms of making more time to hang out posting pics of my lunch and the walls or something. I need this job, and it is what it is.

I also need time to write, so something has to be sacrificed.

I do what I can online, and I blog, and I still pimp my fellow authors. I suppose this situation has proven one thing. The people who stick by you when things get rough are the ones who were truly your "friends" to begin with. But I'm naive enough to have thought certain fans were actually that - fans - and that if I had to back off for a while it wouldn't matter to them. I was wrong.

When I'm in my writing cave, I'm IN MY WRITING CAVE. Because let's face it. Those books don't write themselves, and my writing time is very precious right now. I suppose what I'm saying here is that I choose to write these days when I have free time, rather than spend it posting nonsense. I wasted enough time posting nonsense during the election and where did that get me? I woke up inside a George Orwell novel. But that's another blog post...

To the ones who understand ... to the ones who are still there with me ... to the ones who buy my books even when I don't give things away or send them swag in the mail ... THANK YOU. I will be doing all those things again. Hang in there with me. Crawling out of a three-year-long hole is a slow process. I don't even own a copy of each of the books I have in print. I couldn't afford to buy them until now. I'm more than three years behind in my coffee cup and magnet collection for my own books. And I've had to watch my royalties fall further and further as I'm no longer able to keep up with everything.

As a writer, that is a horrible thing to live through. It eats away at your confidence and drives you into a state where you want to simply give up. Trust me on this one. So to the people who hung in there anyway, THANK YOU. It's because of YOU that I'm still doing the one thing in this life I have always longed to do. YOU are the reason I make the time to write.

Until next week, enjoy your Saturday!

Friday, December 9, 2016

Guest Blogger: Doris O'Connor with CHRISTMAS WITH HIS BEST FRIEND

Thank you so much for having me on your blog today with my new release. Christmas with his Best Friend.

This was one of those stories that practically wrote itself, once I started writing. I love the friends to lovers trope, myself, and I knew I would have to expand on the flash I wrote on my blog. This one to be precise.

Just imagine walking in on your best friend pleasuring himself to a picture of you? What would you do?

Emma has a whole set of conflicting emotions to deal with when this happens to her. Not least because she has been secretively fantasising about her best friend too.

Dare they take that leap into the unknown?

You'll have to read the book to find out.


They’ve been friends for twenty years until … this Christmas.
How do you tell a sweet, naïve, and clearly vanilla girl that you like to tie women up and torture them for mutual enjoyment in your spare time? Josh Mackenzie has no idea, but when his best friend Emma walks in on him pleasuring himself, everything changes.

For Emma, coming face to face with her secret longings is mind-blowing. It’s one thing to fantasize about your best friend, but dare she take that leap into the unknown? Will it not ruin their friendship, and is—what would undoubtedly be awesome—sex worth risking that?

While Josh shares her fears, she is all he’s ever wanted in a woman, and he’s determined to show her that they can have it all. This woman is his to mark, cherish, and love forever, and he’ll prove it to her, one spank at a time.

Be Warned: BDSM, spanking

Christmas with his Best Friend released December 7th and is available from


Ready for a hawt excerpt?

Now that the moment was here Josh was lost for words. With his sweet little Em in his arms, her hazel eyes looking up him with so much trust … fuck it. What was he doing here? Instead of answering her, he pulled away, slid his hands in her hair and tucked at the pins holding it up. The dark blonde mass of silky curls fell in soft waves around her face, and he twirled one strand around his index finger.

“Josh? What are we doing here?” Her whispered question shot straight to his cock, and not trusting his voice to fucking work, he decided to show her instead. A soft gasp escaped her when he picked her up, set her on the kitchen counter, and pulling her legs apart stepped right between them. The action made her pencil skirt ride up, exposing the top of her stockings, and Josh groaned under his breath. He let his digits linger, half expecting her to slap them away, but when she opened her legs wider, he tore his gaze away from her pale flesh to check out her expression. Head down, she seemed mesmerized by the sight of his tanned hands against her skin, and the sweet scent of aroused woman filled his nostrils when he ran his hands slowly up her inner thighs. He could almost feel the heat of her cunt before her whisper stopped him.


Leaving one of his hands where it was, he tipped her chin up with his index finger, satisfied beyond relief to see the same need he felt reflected back at him in her eyes. The hazel orbs had darkened to almost black, and when she licked her lips in a nervous gesture, his gaze followed the movements of her little pink tongue. Visions of her on her knees, with that sweet mouth wrapped around his dick, as he shot his jizz down her slender throat, made his cock jerk against the zipper of his jeans. He growled low in his throat at the thought of marking her thus, and her expressive eyes widened. Her breathing sped up even more, making her tits strain against the sensible blouse she wore for work. With the two top buttons undone, the third was threatening to give way under the rapid movement, giving him tantalizing glimpses of the soft swell of her breasts. Josh couldn’t help it. His self-control and good intentions went out of the window at her untutored responses to him, and he trailed his finger lower down the soft skin of her neck, over her collarbone and lower still, until he reached that tiny ivory button.

“I want you, little one.”

His voice dropped to the one he used in a scene without any conscious effort on his part, and when he flicked that button open, Emma’s sweet moan of surrender was music to his ears. Watching her closely for her reaction, he flicked the next button and so forth, until the sides of her blouse fell open, exposing her amazing rack. The lacy, mauve bra left little to the imagination. Josh continued his one fingered exploration, and they both groaned when he circled her nipples. Clearly visible through the lace, the little pink nubs hardened under his gentle ministrations, and Em’s breathing kicked up another notch.

“Please, I…”

Josh trailed his finger lower, over the soft swell of her abdomen, which caused her to suck in her belly, and he smiled at her action.

“Have I ever told you how much I love your curves, little one?”

Her surprised jerk and strangled half laugh told him he hadn’t, and Josh inwardly kicked himself.

“Since when? You have seen your girlfriends, right?”

There was a wealth of bitterness in those few words compounded by her hasty grab for her blouse. She pulled the ends closed and wrapped her arms around herself in a defensive move that tore at his heartstrings. The Dom in him wanted to order her to strip, to take her over his knee and paddle that luscious ass of hers for disrespecting her body shape like that, and making assumptions about him to boot, but he hadn’t earned that right yet.

So, instead of acting on that impulse, which pushed adrenaline through his veins, he did the next best thing. Stepped away, crossed his own arms over his chest and gave her his best don’t-talk-such-crap-subbie stare.

It didn’t take long before she caved in. Uncertainty crossed her features, followed by confusion, and when she dropped her gaze to his chest, he finally spoke.

“Let’s get one thing straight here, my sweet little Em, I do, indeed love your curves. In fact seeing you waltz out of here in those damn tight pencil skirts you wear for work has me so fucking hard I have to jerk off the minute you leave.”

Clearly startled by that revelation, Emma jerked her head up, opened her mouth to say something, but one look at his expression seemed to change her mind. The Dom in him almost roared when she dropped her gaze—to his chin this time—and kept it there. His girl was a natural, responding to him without even realizing what she was doing, and wasn’t that the biggest turn-on yet.

“Next, I don’t do girlfriends.” That brought her head up again, albeit briefly, and he smiled at her sharp intake of breath, and the confusion written all over her face. “I haven’t done for a long time, ever since I realized I was in love with my best friend.”

About Doris

Doris is a writer of sensual, sassy, and sexy tales involving alpha heroes to die for, and heroines who give as good as they get. From contemporary to paranormal, Time Travel, Sci-fi, BDSM, F/F, M/M, and Ménage, haunting love stories are guaranteed.

Happily married for the last twenty-five years, she lives with her husband and their brood of nine in a far too small house filled with love, laughter, and chaos.

Stalk her in these places

Website Reader Group Tumblr Twitter Facebook Pinterest Evernight Publishing
Amazon All Romance E-Books BookStrand Barnes&Noble

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Tantalizing Thursdays: Measured Words


I'm sharing a bit more from my current WIP. I'm hoping this will be my next Tortured Love series release, and I'm aiming for submission of this one to Evernight next week. Enjoy!!

There was no way Kendra was going to sleep that night. She played over every second of her conversation with Blake at Tully’s, including each of his facial expressions. To say he’d looked disappointed when she hadn’t agreed to have dinner with him was an understatement. She couldn’t even say why she had hesitated. She already knew he wasn’t married, and she’d meant what she had said. He wasn’t trying to hurt her.

On the surface, he was perfect. And maybe that was it? He was too perfect. Showing up at an opportune time twice now, saying the right things, showing the appropriate combination of emotions, and asking open-ended questions to get her talking. If it hadn’t been for the bizarre reaction over seeing her with his senior yearbook, she’d swear his words were rehearsed.

No, not rehearsed. Controlled. Yes. that was a better word. Measured, even. As if he was two steps ahead of her and planning what to say and how to react. With the exception of one tiny detail. She hadn’t yet seen anything on his face or in his eyes, or heard any inflection in his voice that led her to believe he was lying. Everything came out genuine, if a bit cautious.

And maybe caution was all that was going on with him? He had been through a horrendous, public divorce. Something like that was bound to affect a person. And he had looked hurt when she’d let him read the Facebook comments.

She imagined he was used to bad publicity, having been in so many publications by now, but she’d read a lot of interviews and articles on him recently, and no one had ripped him apart, or accused him of being a serial killer. Those Facebook comments had to have been rough to read, and he didn’t deserve them.

**This is copyrighted material, and is the property of Ravenna Tate

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

MidWeek Tease: Kind Of Bizarre, Isn't It?

Welcome to MidWeek Tease hosted by Angelica Dawson!

Today I'm offering a sneak peek at what I hope will be my next release, RELENTLESS. This is the third book in my Tortured Love series, and I hope to have it to Evernight in a couple of weeks!!

Blake and Kendra had a pleasant but short chat in the park where she spends a lot of time, and Kendra can't stop thinking about it ...

The next three days were so busy at work that Kendra had no more than a few minutes to detour through the park each afternoon on her way home, but she didn’t spot Blake. She was acting silly, and didn’t understand why she felt the need to see him again. She knew nothing about him except what she’d read online, and so far she hadn’t gone scouring for everything out there. Not yet, at least.

But there was someone she could ask. Someone who probably knew everything ever written about him.

“Do you know who Blake Bombay is?” She was in the cafeteria having lunch with Nicole Harrington, her co-worker and the woman who had trained her in this role. Nicole was a confirmed celebrity gossip hound, and she’d been known to quote entire articles on several of them. If there was gossip out there about Blake, Nicole would have it.

“Is there anyone who doesn’t know who he is?”

“Probably not. I met him in McKinley Park earlier this week.”

Nicole raised her brows. “Really? You mean he was just there?”

“He sat down next to me and asked me about that book I checked out of the university library last week.” The hair on the back of Kendra’s neck prickled at the look of disbelief on Nicole’s face. Was there something Nicole knew about Blake she’d rather not hear?

“One of the wealthiest men in Seattle … strike that. In the world just happens to be in McKinley Park, and sits down next to you to discuss a book on diabetes education?”

“Kind of bizarre, isn’t it?” Saying it out loud only confused her thoughts further. The same dissonance had been clanging around in her brain for days now, even while she hoped she’d see him again. Hearing Nicole confirm the craziness of the incident made her discomfort real.

**This is copyrighted material, and is the property of Ravenna Tate

Thanks for stopping by and happy reading.
If you want to read more from other authors, click the links and enjoy...

Monday, December 5, 2016


The votes are in!! I'm thrilled to announce that you voted
UNYIELDING - Tortured Love 1 - the Best Dark Romance!!

Here's an excerpt from UNYIELDING...

“Is there anyone you aren’t connected to?”

He chuckled. “I don’t know the President personally.”

“Oh, well, there you go. You do have flaws.”

Merrick pulled her onto his lap and nuzzled her neck. “I’ll show you my flaws, smart ass.”

“I happen to love your flaws.”

He brushed his hand over her left breast. “That’s because you’re sick and twisted.”

She moaned softly and shoved her hand between his legs. “You like me sick and twisted. Admit it.”

Merrick bit her nipple gently through her clothes. “I wouldn’t want you any other way.”

Lynda’s pussy was soaked. “You ever make love out here?”


She laughed. “Okay. Forget I asked that. No … wait. Did you do it in the daylight?”

He gave her such a sexy grin she could barely stand it. “No. Not yet…”

Lynda glanced around. So many eyes in so many buildings could see them, assuming they were looking right now. But the idea of it gave her a huge thrill. “Dare we try?”

His eyes grew dark, sending delicious shivers down her spine. “Don’t dare me to, Lynda. I’ll definitely do it then, and I won’t care who sees us.”

“That’s one of the things I happen to love about you.” It was the closest she’d come to saying “I love you.” She held her breath, but the only reaction to her comment was to bite her other nipple.

She stroked his cock through his pants, and then when he moved his hand between her legs, she knew all bets were off. The hell with whoever saw them. Merrick rubbed her clit until she moaned loudly and was close to an orgasm. “Please…”

“I’ll let you come if you agree to fuck me out here.”

“Okay. Yes.”


His tone of voice made her laugh. She took his face in her hands and kissed him, hard. “Yes. Really.”

Merrick stood her up and pulled down her pants, taking her panties with him. Then he moved her closer to his mouth so he could lick her pussy, circling her clit until she was ready to scream with need. “You’re soaked, Lynda. God, I love how wet you get!”

“I can’t help it. You do that to me.”

Merrick stood and took his dick out of his pants, and all she wanted to do was wrap her mouth or hand around it, but he had other plans. He turned her around to face the table. “Lean over it. Ass in the air. I’m going to fuck your pussy from behind.”

Be sure to pick up UNYIELDING at Evernight, where right now you can save 25%!!

UNYIELDING is the first book in my Tortured Love series. This is a series of dark romances not connected to each other in any way except content. The second book IRREFUTABLE is available by clicking HERE. I'm currently at work on the third book in this series.

And check out the other winners and runner-ups in this blog post!!

Sunday, December 4, 2016

#SexySnippets: Married to a Man She Didn't Even Know


Enjoy a sexy snippet from UNYIELDING - Tortured Love 1. This book was voted the Best Dark Romance in the Evernight Publishing Readers' Choice Awards 2016!!

He moved her across the floor, his hand warm in hers. His opposite hand held her just close enough by the waist to guide her, and she was able to easily follow his lead. It felt as if they’d danced together for years.

It also felt so normal to be dancing with this man that Lynda had to blink back tears again. Reality was finally beginning to set in. She was married. To a man she didn’t even know. All for the sake of a business her father and uncles had run into the ground.

To see the other #SexySnippets, click HERE or HERE!!

Follow #SexySnippets on Twitter!

See you next Sunday!!

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Saturdays In Indy: Christmas Trees!!!

Here it is!! The long awaited post!! We began in October, before Halloween. When you put up this many trees AND decorate them, AND work full time, AND try to write every day, you need to start early.

We start with the dining room. This one has two trees. The blue one is something we began almost twenty years ago, in the house where we last lived in Ohio. The gold one used to be in an office off the family room in that house, but since the dining room in this house is large, it fits nicely in there now.

Next is the living room. My little village is set up in there, too. This room is a cave! LOL!! It's huge, so we have lots of room in there to play with.

That's the mantel up there, and next to it is the music tree. This is one of many trees Nicole used to have in her room and decorate. You can't see the detail in this picture, but the tree contains ornaments that have to do with music, including some in the shape of instruments. Nicole has always had a love of music, and graduated in 2015 with a BS in Music Performance.

This one we simply call the purple tree. It's a mishmash of left over purple ornaments from Nicole's Harry Potter tree (no, we no longer do that one!), and other trees we've decorated in the past. It goes well in the room because of the coloring.

This is the first tree we ever put up together as a couple, although the actual tree is now long gone. But most of the ornaments are still around! We've added quite a few over the years. We call it the Victorian tree because the ornaments look Victorian.

And below is the village! The pictures follow it around from one end to the other.

The next room is what we call the Gettysburg room. David is a huge Civil War buff, and has memorabilia from both the North and the South in this room. He's been collecting it a long time. There are two trees in this room, plus a decorated mantel.

We call this one the old-fashioned tree. It has a multitude of ornaments that look, or actually are, from the 1950s or earlier. We also have glass ornaments and others that are very delicate, that we've collected from various places we've visited over the years.

This one has pewter ornaments, and I love it because it just goes so well with the room.

Also in this room are my Charlie Brown ornaments on the apothecary table that holds the Comcast modem. LOL!!

Popping down to the basement for a moment so you can see Nicole's Phantom of the Opera tree! This was her creation years ago after seeing Phantom for the first time.

Now back upstairs for Nicole's cow tree in the foyer! She was fascinated with cows when she was younger.

David always does such a pretty job of decorating the foyer and staircase each year.

This is the mantel in the family room. This room has three trees as well.

We call this the red tree for obvious reasons. It's my favorite of all of them because of the ornaments on it.

This tree has copper ornaments on it, although it's difficult to see them in this picture. It's a very tall tree and was originally in the great room of our prior home in Tennessee.

We have more pieces for this Nativity scene, but there's no room for them!!

And this is the last of Nicole's creations - the Wicked tree!

This tree is in our bedroom, and has gold, silver, and purple bulbs on it.

And this in my writing room. It's from the 1960s and has those aluminum branches you have to shove into holes in the stand, just like we had when I was a kid! The color wheels are also that old, but David re-wired them so they're safe to use now.

That's it! Thanks for letting me share my indoor Christmas decorations with you!!

Until next week, enjoy your Saturday!