Wednesday, July 31, 2013

#Free Romance on Amazon by Denise Moncrief

My friend and fellow author, Denise Moncrief, has had her book, Deceptions of the Heart re-released from The Wild Rose Press, The Crimson Rose line. I met Denise through a mutual friend and we have visited each other's blogs from time to time. I'm excited to share with you all that you can pick Deceptions of the Heart up free on Amazon now through Saturday! If you don't have a Kindle, you could always download the Kindle ap on your computer so you can check out Denise's work. Here are the details: 

Surviving as Jennifer Cristobal isn't easy for Rhonda Prentiss. Three years ago, a sudden, fatal trauma stripped Rhonda of her middle-class, stay-at-home-mom existence. A brand new shock prompts Rhonda's essence to invade Jennifer's soul, suppressing the other woman's memories and replacing them with her own. When Jennifer's heart transplant surgeon, Dr. Crane, can't--or won't--help her understand her unusual body-swapping dilemma, she turns to the only man she can trust. But can she fully trust Jennifer's husband, Anson? Rhonda's memory proves faulty--and sugarcoated. Multiple threats from her past shake her fragile hold on mental stability. If one of her enemies succeeds, he will kill Rhonda's soul...or Jennifer's body...or both.

Amazon link:

Interested in finding out more about Denise Moncrief and her work? You can check out her blog at 

I have my copy! Can't wait to read it--just as soon as I finish writing my own book, that is! I'm still busily working on Love & Deception! Happy reading, my friends! 
~~ Chantel ~~

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Guest post ~ The Mirror by Candace Bowser and #Giveaway

Book Title:  The Mirror
Author:  Candace L. Bowser
Release Date:  June 18, 2013
Genre:  Paranormal Romance/Horror
Length:  280 Pages
Publisher:  GMTA Publishing LLC
Presented by:  As You Wish Tours

Practical Advice for Beginning Fiction (or other genre) Writers

Everyone has advice for the new aspiring author. Mine would be to follow 5 simple rules that help to keep you a path that is true to what you are writing.

1.Make your characters believable regardless of their traits. If they are someone that is to be loathed then make them absolutely loathing. You can make a reader fall in love with a serial killer not because there is this sickening sweet I volunteer at the soup kitchen on Sundays because they feel guilty quality but because they are scooping out their next potential victim.

2.If you read it and you think it sucks, it just might. Try highlighting that paragraph or few pages you just aren’t happy with in a different color and rewriting it immediately below. Take a look at both of them. Which one is better? Which one draws you the most? Are they elements in each that are equally good?  Could those elements be combined?

3.If and when creative writing takes a downturn, try writing something simple and expanding it to reinvigorate the mind. For instance, write a simple sentence like ‘the cat was pink’. Okay the cat was pink. There is a noun, a verb, and a descriptive adjective but the sentence does not tell you why the cat was pink or what happened to the cat to cause it to be pink. Re-write it with that in mind. Sometimes I find the more simply the exercise, the better the results.

4.Find a writing style that suits you and use it to appeal to your target audience. That is a bit harder than it may sound but do it and be true to the dream. My style is more classical oriented where descriptive, complex sentences fill the page as needed. Short sentences are just not the style which makes me comfortable writing but that is not to say they do not work for other authors. Finding your style and being true to it is key.

5.Write because you love it; not because it is a dream of becoming rich and famous overnight. If writing does not tug at the heartstrings and draw you to it with vigor, then it might just be a fleeting passion. That is okay, but if you live to write, keep doing it regardless of how many rejection letters litter you inbox or fill the trash, just keep writing.


Adrianna Bristol stood before her grandmother's antique mirror and stared at the black velvet cloth covering it. She just couldn't believe her nana was gone. The mirror had hung in that exact same spot for the last twenty years, never once had it been moved from the alcove. Adrianna remembered the stern words of her grandmother when she was a child. Annabel Bristol had told her, "promise me Adrianna that you will never uncover the mirror. No matter what it may whisper to you, you must never remove the cover." Adrianna laid her hand against the cool velvet which covered the glass. As she walked away the mirror whispered to her, "you belong to me now. You belong to me." A four hundred year old curse has  plagued the Bristol family since the 1600's. A curse born out of a love so rich and a betrayal so deep, that time itself has no power to stop it. Only Adrianna has the courage to find the truth behind the curse and set her family free. But will the Mirror release its darkest secrets?

An avid writer, Candace works nearly every day on one of her manuscripts. Though she predominately composes works of horror, she also writes mystery, suspense, and adventure. During the 1990’s she was a featured columnist for PRS in Kansas City. In 2011, Candace was honored by being voted one of the Top 20 Most Prolific Authors by AKG mag.. Her books are an unusual blend of historical places and events, along with fictional and non-fictional characters, which she seamlessly weaves into the story .Originally from south-central Pennsylvania, she currently resides in Kansas City with her husband Todd.



Monday, July 22, 2013

#NewRelease Untameable Heat ~ Paranormal Romances

Looking for some heat this week? My friend, Dariel Raye, has teamed up with Kathryn Edgar and they have released some hot paranormal romance stories for your reading pleasure. They are having parties with giveaways and all sorts of fun on Facebook and a Rafflecopter giveaway. Join in the fun! But first, check out the books!

Kaden’s Reprieve  
Tanya has been running for her life for two years, but when Ms. Lillian, owner of the exclusive “Heaven’s Touch” match making service, graciously gives her a week’s stay at her private bed and breakfast in St. Augustine, FL, she seizes the opportunity to escape to a possible hideaway.

Kaden is of a rare and precious race prized for extraordinary abilities. He is also half-demon, remanded to Kushiel’s custody centuries ago. Allowed to leave Hell twice a year, three days each time – Beltane, and Samhain, his life thus far has been filled with slavery, torture, and despair, and he is nearly convinced that his soul is beyond redemption. Still, he longs for freedom. Can Tanya redeem him? Can Kaden dare hope for a reprieve?

Want to buy Kaden's Reprieve?

B&N - 

Want to connect with Dariel Raye?
Amazon author page 

Lilith's Freedom
In the dark alleys of the St Louis riverfront sits a club known only to those evil enough to enter.   The club is called The Master’s Lair.  It is frequented by the evil underbelly of the supernatural world.  Lilith is a beautiful succubus entertaining nightly in the Lair.

Lilith has grown bored with her life.  She is ready for more.   The Master has promised her release from her succubus bonds is possible, except the price may be higher than she can afford.

Alex is hell bent on revenge.  An angel that watched his sister die in the clutches of a goblin drug ring, his main mission is to end their reign of death.   Going undercover as a fallen angel he throws himself into danger going inside The Master’s Lair. 

Meeting the beautiful Lilith wasn’t part of his revenge plan.  Yet, something in him wants to be her redemption.  Alex wonders if he can be the one to help Lilith attain the freedom she seeks or will he endanger them both?

Want to buy Lilith's Freedom?

Want to connect with Kathryn Edgar?

Want to find out more? Check out their official Tour Schedule and follow along at Facebook. Don't forget to checkout the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win prizes!

Happy reading, my friends! Have a fantastic week...with a bit of heat! 
~~ Chantel ~~

Friday, July 19, 2013

#NewRelease ~ Wicked Hunger by DelSheree Gladden

Book Title:  Wicked Hunger
Series:  SomeOne Wicked This Way Comes
Author:  DelSheree Gladden
Release Date:  July 9th
Genre:  YA Urban Fantasy
Length: 95,000 words/240 pages
Publisher:  GMTA Publishing LLC
Presented by:  As You Wish Tours


Vanessa and Zander Roth are good at lying. They have to be when they are hiding a deadly secret. Day after day, they struggle to rein in their uncontrollable hunger for pain and suffering in order to live normal lives. Things only get worse when Ivy Guerra appears with her pink-striped hair and secrets. The vicious hunger Ivy inspires is frightening, not to mention suspicious.

Vanessa’s instincts are rarely wrong, so when they tell her that Ivy’s appearance is a sign of bad things to come, she listens.  She becomes determined to expose Ivy’s secrets. Vanessa tries to warn her brother, but Zander is too enamored with Ivy to pay attention to her conspiracy theories.

One of them is right about Ivy … but if they lose control of their hunger, it won’t matter who is right and who is wrong. One little slip, and they’ll all be dead.


Vanessa and Zander Roth have spent their lives battling an uncontrollable hunger for pain and suffering that will either gain them limitless power or lead them to their deaths.

DelSheree Gladden lives in New Mexico with her husband and two children. The Southwest is a big influence in her writing because of its culture, beauty, and mythology. Local folk lore is strongly rooted in her writing, particularly ideas of prophecy, destiny, and talents born from natural abilities. When she is not writing, DelSheree is usually teaching yoga, coaching gymnastics, reading, painting, sewing, or working as a Dental Hygienist. Her works include Escaping Fate, Twin Souls Saga, and The Destroyer Trilogy. DelSheree's newest series, The SomeOne Wicked This Way Come series, follows Vanessa and Zander Roth, siblings with an uncontrollable hunger for pain and suffering that will either gain them limitless power or lead them to their deaths.


Link button it to

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

#FREE Always & Forever ~ Romantic Suspense

I woke up yesterday to a little surprise. After trying for almost a month to get Amazon to price match the Apple iStore and make Always & Forever free, I gave up and put everything on a sale price of $2.99 instead of my regular $3.99. However, Amazon decided to set it to free yesterday and I realized it is also free at the Sony store. That's great news for any of you with Kindles curious about my writing. You can pick it up now!

A suspected murderess flees her former life in search of tranquility, but the past refuses to die, threatening to destroy her new found happiness.

Lilly Price is an abused woman on the run, but she can’t hide forever. Desperate to escape public scrutiny following accusations that she hired a hit man to kill her fiancĂ©, Lilly hopes to rebuild her life in a new town.

Widowed Zach Woodbridge is in no hurry to find another bride. He longs for a peaceful summer, writing at his lakeside cottage. Things change after an introduction to his grandmother’s intriguing new assistant, Lilly.

When Lilly’s secrets are revealed, can their fragile relationship weather the storm? And when a man from her past wishes to reclaim Lilly, using any force necessary, can she and Zach protect the people they love? 

CONTENT WARNING: Violence, mild language, sizzling love scenes.

FREE on Amazon Kindle US for a limited time! 

It's still on sale for just $2.99 at all other vendors
Barnes & Noble:
Apple iStore:
All Romance eBooks: 
Sony eBook Store:
Diesel eBook Store:

Also, for those of you who use Smashwords, I'm participating in their Summer/Winter sale and my books are half price over there for the month of July. 


Happy reading and thanks so much to everyone for their ongoing support! I'm busy working on Love & Deception with an anticipated release in mid-October! I better get back to work! Have a great Wednesday!
~~ Chantel ~~

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

#NewRelease ~ Romance author, Melinda Dozier, Author V Character

Today, I'm so pleased to have Melinda Dozier, fabulous romance author and my good friend, here for an interview to talk about her latest romance novel, Breaking the Rules (and a chance to win in her giveaway at the end of this post). Her sexy hero, Dr. Colin Calaway, has come along too!  First, lets check out her cover and the blurb for her book:


A forbidden love affair in the past has led Hope Robinson, a middle school principal, to Harbor Bay, Florida, where she commits herself to play by the rules. This can be difficult for a perpetual klutz, who—even strapped in a cast—has to uphold a competent attitude at all times.

Luckily, she has Dr. Colin Calaway on her side, a widower and father of a student, who is ready to give love another try. When Colin convinces Hope they should explore the connection between them, a steamy romance develops, though it could destroy them both. They must decide if their jobs—and their hearts—are worth the risk.

Sensuality Level: Sensual

Amazon product link

Alright, this is probably no secret, but I loved Breaking The Rules, especially you, Dr. Calaway. I kept rooting for you to win Hope's heart. Okay, let's get to the good stuff and find what inspired this story. How did you and Melinda meet, Colin, and how long ago was it?

Colin: **sea-green eyes twinkle** I always like to say I was the inspiration behind Breaking the Rules. Melinda was just kind enough to listen to me as I screamed me and Hope's story at her. **smiles, two dimples set deep into his cheeks**

Melinda: Look at him! All he has to do is smile and he’s a big flirt. 

Hey, you can't fault him for that sexy smile. You created it. 

Melinda: **ahem** Yes, about a year ago, Colin wouldn’t leave me alone. He even talked to me in my sleep.

Colin: Hey, now. You have to clear that up or Hope will think we’ve got something else going on besides pencil and paper.

Melinda: Oh, Hope has nothing to worry about. I’ve never seen such a dedicated man before. It all basically started when I watched my own brother-in-law (who also lost his wife) begin dating. Then Colin’s stories came to me – in a manner of speaking. I knew I had to write for all those single dads out there to let them know there’s hope. **snort – get it? Hope**

Colin: **rolls his eyes** You’re a real jokester, Melinda. But seriously, getting back into the dating field is hard stuff. Luckily, I had Melinda to walk me through it. **wink**

Melinda: **sigh**

I laughed at your joke, Melinda. :-) Okay, what was your first impression of each other?

Colin: I have to admit that having someone follow your every move was quite disarming at first.

Melinda: Honestly, if I wasn’t married already, I would’ve tried to break some rules with Colin myself. Hope’s very lucky. He’s a catch!

I totally agree, but he has to have some bad qualities too. Melinda, what does Colin do that annoys you the most?

Melinda: Colin is one big flirt. I’m not sure if that’s a bad thing, but it can be annoying if done too much. Hope was lucky enough that Colin didn’t give up on flirting with her. Look where they’re at now.

Colin: **hand splayed across his heart** Me? A flirt? Nah! **leans in** You look beautiful today, by the way.

Melinda: See!

Chantel: **laughs** Let's reverse things. Colin, if you could say just one thing to Melinda, what would it be?

Colin: Thank you. Thank you for introducing me to the love of my life. You gave me Hope – in more ways than one.

Melinda: Geez, I think I’m going to cry. I take back my earlier comment. You don’t annoy me at all, Colin.

Colin: I knew I’d get through to you. **pulls his Yankees cap down** But really, I mean it. Thank you.

Awe, that's sweet... But, the story is sweet enough. Let's get to something less mushy. **grins evilly** What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened between you two?

Colin: Ah, hell. I don’t like to talk about embarrassing things. Can we skip this one?

Melinda: But it’s so fun!

Colin: Maybe for you, but I’m the one who endures it.

Melinda: Awww, don’t be a party pooper.

Chantel: Come on...tell us. Please.

Colin: **scratches his jaw** It is embarrassing to have a writer follow you through your most – ahem – intimate moments with someone. I mean, she even knows my every thought. **shakes head**

Melinda: **pushes Colin’s shoulder** It was kind of cute when you couldn’t stop imagining Hope naked – even in the principal’s office.

Colin: Crap. **pulls cap down over his eyes** This is what I mean. Next question?

Alright, we'll let you off the hook, even if you are cute when you're embarrassed. Melinda, what do you feel the worst about doing to Colin?

Melinda: Colin really handed his heart over to Hope, taking a huge risk after losing his wife and I went and had her break it off with him. **pats his back** Sorry about that, Yank.

Colin: Yeah, well – we ended up together so – 

Melinda: Thanks to Jason! That son of yours is a real heart-tugger.

Colin: I love that little man, too. I couldn’t be prouder. 

You should be proud. Jason is a great kid. So, do you think you two will meet again in the future?

Melinda: Colin might be surprised to know this, but yes, I suspect we’ll meet again. I have Colin’s best friend, Tim, sending me dream messages lately.

Colin: Has hell frozen over? Tim’s story? How can Tim, the loudmouth, make a good story?

Melinda: You forget he’s married to Hope’s best friend. They have a truly romantic story behind their marriage as well. Just you wait and see.

Colin: I can’t wait to give him as much shit as he’s given me. Perfect!

Well, I certainly look forward to Tim's story! It'll be fun to see more of Colin and Hope, too! Thank you both so much for being here today and taking the time to talk with me!

Melinda: Thanks Chantel for such a wonderful interview. It’s been so much fun to interact with Colin again. 

Colin: Yeah, it was fun. I don’t get to take too much time off away from the clinic or from my family, so it’s been great. Thanks for having us.

About Melinda:

Melinda Dozier lives in Guatemala, Central America, with her husband, three boys and German Shepherd.  She enjoys being the queen of her household and dreams of being pampered fully by her boys once they’re grown. Learn more about her at

Want to connect with Melinda?

Want to buy Breaking The Rules?
Crimson Website:
Add it on Goodreads:

Melinda is giving away an ecopy of Breaking the Rules and winners choice of a Yankees or Red Sox baseball cap through her tour wide giveaway. Winners must enter via Rafflecopter and will be chosen on July 27.

Monday, July 15, 2013

#NewRelease ~ The Hopfield Tales by Mike Evers

Book Title: The Hopfield Tales
Author:  Mike Evers
Release Date: June 17th
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Historical
Publisher:  GMTA Publishing, LLC
Presented by:  As You Wish Tours


There's always more to a town than meets the eye. You just need to scratch the surface.  The quiet town of Hopfield is no exception. There are everyday people doing everyday things - just like where you live. But history has a way of coming back to find us. And the voices of the past can change our lives forever. 

Three fabulous fables for your delectation and delight:

The Spirit Archer
Campaign of the Gods
Mark of the Legion


The Hopfield Tales is a trilogy of three novellas.  Each story is set in a town in present day Yorkshire and involves people who have encounters with characters from English history and legend.  The tales include the final, as yet unpublished story, Mark of the Legion.

The blurb for the unreleased novella, Mark of the Legion:

Bentham Cawley enjoys and quiet and humdrum life as a monk at the Brotherhood of the Resurrection in Hopfield, Yorkshire.  But this is all about to change - when he unwillingly embarks on the monastery's new friendship programme and meets remarkable octogenarian Ernest Teale.

Just how does Ernest know so much about the past, and how is he connected to the legendary but doomed Roman Ninth Legion? 

Some secrets wait centuries to be unlocked...

Review samples for The Spirit Archer and Campaign of the Gods:

"This is a novella that is entertaining, informative and imaginative. It's a wonderful story that put a smile on my face."  (The Spirit Archer; Ann Werner, Amazon)

"This is a good fun read which I really enjoyed. I particularly liked the way the scenes cut back to the gods and their fated board game and the effect that had on our world of 'Midgard'. A great, light-hearted bit of fun."  (Campaign of the Gods; Ignite, Amazon)

The voices of the past can change our lives forever…

From The Spirit Archer:

The boy checked his voice recorder was still running and the story emerged through the mists of time:
I estimated by the moon that it was the middle of the night.  Pembroke had reckoned on the moment when the French were in their deepest slumbers as the best time to attack. And we had all agreed with him. My Welsh archers were in the trees near a lake, nearly six thousand good men and horses ahead of us. High to our left lay the massive ramparts of Château Gaillard, its portals dimly glimmering in the still, chilly night. Approximately a hundred score yards, or so, in the distance were the French lines.  Philip’s men were stationed all the way to the castle walls, and concentrated near the river.  You had to admire them – they had replaced the ruined crossing with their own bridge made of boats.  We could even see strange wooden towers floating near the bridge, their torches acting as beacons as to moths. The mighty French siege force slumbered away, oblivious to our threat.
     We had been assured that a fleet of nigh on seventy Anglo-Norman ships were heading up the river to deal a hammer blow to Philip’s crossing - at the very moment of our land assault.  King John’s tactical master stroke was sure to win the day.  We were poised to attack.
Jamie listened intently; his breath held in anticipation.
     And then the attack began.  A horn was sounded and we swarmed out of the forest.  The infantry, led by sturdy men at arms, marched steadily onwards towards the French encampment, and the mighty cavalry units cantered around in a great arc to deliver a flanking blow. On we went.  My archers jogged behind the infantry until we reached our position, and we readied our bows to fire. The minutes seemed like hours. We fired our first volley, and then another. We could only assume we were hitting our targets at that point.  We could not tell in the mingled shouts and screams ahead of us. A few volleys later, a great thunder of hooves announced the arrival of the horsemen and a shift of the lines as a huge hole was punched in the side of the French.  What a noise - such terrible sounds.
     I sensed the French retreating and I signalled my men forward.  We were near the river by now.  I ordered more shots, and my men replied the best way they knew how: dense clouds of arrows fell upon the enemy - wounding and slaying. Never had I seen anything like it.  We sensed victory was near and I felt my elation growing – as saddened as I am to say so.
Robin sighed.
     But the ships never came.  They were stuck down the river – the tides, currents and winds against them – the foolish had foundered on their folly.
“But - you were about to win, weren’t you? It sounded like you would,” said Jamie.

 “Never assume anything in war, young man,” replied the archer.

Mike often taps out stuff on his keyboard in the fantasy, urban fantasy and paranormal genres: a habit which his wife finds fairly amusing - and sometimes a little bit strange.

So far he has published two novellas - The Spirit Archer and Campaign of the Gods - with GMTA Publishing. Along with Mark of the Legion, the novellas are due to be published as The Hopfield Tales in summer 2013.

Mike's debut novel, The Chaosifier, is also available on Amazon, where it is ambushing unsuspecting fans of contemporary fantasy with its general mischief and mayhem.
Mike's educational background is in History, International Conflict Analysis and Education. He is qualified as a teacher in ESOL and Adult Literacy, and lives and works in West Yorkshire. He's married to a long-suffering wife, Joanne, and they have a young son called Joseph.



Friday, July 12, 2013

Paranormal Mystery Series ~ Author versus Character interview

I'm so excited to welcome Mary E. Merrell to my blog today and, more exciting, she brought along the heroine from The Real Estate Paranormal Mystery Series, Rosemary Fernandes, for another author versus character interview. You all know how much I love these interviews! First, let's check out the cover and blurb for the newest book in the series, which will be released any day now!

Soul in Present Condition (The Real Estate Paranormal Mystery Series #3) 
Author: Mary E. Merrell
Character: Rosemary Fernandes

Divorced. Check. Ghost Whisperer. Check. Human Servant. Check. Great. Check

Real estate agent Rosemary Fernandes never expected to inherit the ability to communicate with spirits, and she certainly didn’t expect her gift to attract the undead as well. Now Rosemary finds herself ghost whisperer to the lost souls stuck at their haunts and human servant to a gorgeous but aloof vampire Marcus Lyons.

Benito Cruz died with a dangerous secret, a secret that connects a gang to Rosemary. Can Rosemary send the spirit to his final resting place before his past catches up with her, and can she convince the vampire helping spirits like Benito is her destiny?

When real estate and the supernatural come together it is murder.

Alright, ladies, let's get to it! How did you two meet and how long ago was it?

Rosemary: About ten years ago, Mary E. Merrell was previewing an old vacant home for one of her clients. She’s a real scaredy-cat, thought there might be a ghost. Turns out, there wasn’t, but that didn’t stop her from creating one and me, Rosemary Fernandes.

Well, inspiration strikes when it strikes. So, what was your first impression of each other? 

Mary: When I first met Rosemary Fernandes, she seemed kind of weak and scared, but determined to succeed in her career of choice. As her story progresses, I realized she is stubborn, kind, brave, and a bit goofy. Just ask any of the other agents in the office. She’s always coming in with her clothes dirty or destroyed, and her hair needs some kind of style. She is shy but friendly, and will go out of her way to help someone. 

Rosemary: Mary E. Merrell thinks she’s so clever, always putting me in awkward situations as she sits behind her desk, safe and sound while I’m fighting for my life. She’s scared to death of ghosts, but that doesn’t stop her from sending me into homes where the lost souls are stuck. Ghosts aren’t always cooperative, believe me. She wants me to save them...the ghosts and the vampires...she lives vicariously through me. Didn’t think I knew, huh, Mary. She doesn’t even do real estate anymore. Too scared, I guess. 

Well, in fairness, Rosemary, we authors often live through our characters, so you have to be more brave than we are. Not to start any arguments or anything, but I really want to know - Mary, what does Rosemary do that annoys you the most? 

Mary: Rosemary is always getting herself and her friends in trouble, deadly trouble. Usually with serial killers or ghosts or vampires, doesn’t know when to keep her mouth shut. She’s got this smok’n hot boyfriend I personally picked out for her, and she’s still got it bad for that vampire, her master, Marcus Lyons. Sure he’s gorgeous, but he’s kind of a jerk. I just don’t get it.

Rosemary: Me get in trouble? Not on my own. Mary E. Merrell is always putting me in these ridiculous situations. Like at the strip club. A big, stupid guy threw me on stage, for goodness sakes, and I got kissed by a girl. Still not over that. I help lost souls find peace; it’s what I do, when I’m not selling real estate. No matter how frightened Mary is, I deal with the spirits. I send them on. 

Sounds exciting, really. Rosemary, if you could say just one thing to Mary, what would it be? 

Rosemary: Please, please, give me more than a couple weeks between lost souls. Send me somewhere with Frank so the two of us can be alone without ghosts or vampires, or difficult clients. Even a few days alone would be nice. That man is so...yum. He’s my flesh and blood anchor to the world when my life goes crazy. And he’s a good guy too. I think...I love him, but I haven’t actually told him yet. 

Seems like a reasonable request. We all need some down time with the one we love. Let's see...what’s the most embarrassing thing that’s happened between you two? 

Rosemary: Mary, remember that house I took my first clients too? The one with the missing key, and when I looked through the window two agents were doing it on the kitchen table. That is burned into my brain forever. I don’t think I ever thanked you for that visual. Not pretty.

Yikes! On that note, Mary, what do you feel the worst about doing to Rosemary? 

Mary: Rosemary, I do feel badly about the whole intercourse on the table episode. Rosemary’s clients thought it was pretty funny, and so did the ghost, Keith Laumer, who was following her around. But what I feel worst about doing to Rosemary is sending the vampire hunter after her. He was a real jerk.

Rosemary certainly has lived an exciting life in your books! Do you think you two will meet again in the future? 

Mary: Definitely. Soul Pending, Book 4 in the Real Estate Paranormal Mystery Series is due out next spring. Or maybe earlier.

Sounds great! I really do appreciate your time and glad you ladies could stop by. I'd better let you get back to writing, Mary, so Rosemary can help those ghosts! 

Author Bio: 
Mary E. Merrell writes Paranormal Mysteries and Young Adult Urban Fantasy. She has worked many jobs, but always had stories in her head. It wasn’t until she went into real estate and walked into that old, vacant home that The Real Estate Paranormal Mystery Series came to life. Fortunately, nothing spooky happened at the furniture store, or the first book might have been, “The Haunted Sofa". 

Mary E. Merrell’s plots are smooth and slightly dark, and her characters sinfully sweet. Try a little guilty pleasure with House Haunting, the first book in The Real Estate Paranormal Mystery Series. One reviewer called it “A good start to a new series”.

Mary E. Merrell lives in the Central Valley of California with her husband, two dogs, and four cats. She has two grown sons. When she’s not writing, she’s gardening or playing soccer.

Want to connect with Mary?

Want to read The Real Estate Paranormal Mystery Series? Get caught up with the first two books so you are ready when the third releases soon! Here are their links for Kindle:
These books sound great! Mysteries, ghosts, and a strong heroine, I can't wait to check them out. Happy reading, my friends!
~~ Chantel ~~

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Interview with Melissa Mayberry - Author of Mellifica

Today, I'm pleased to interview an author I have participated in different Facebook groups with and met over at Critique Circle, but have never really gotten a chance to know, Melissa Mayberry. I'm excited to talk about her life and her Mature YA Romance book, Mellifica: Devastating First Love. First, let's check out the book cover and description!

At sixteen years old, Melissa has already found her Prince Charming. Sandy, the school’s most popular boy, graces her with a dream-like romance. However, a bold and dominating stranger named Arien quickly enters the picture and steals the girl’s heart while at summer camp. 

What seems like a promising new relationship eventually becomes a downward spiral into heartbreak, leading Melissa down a path to depression, anorexia, and revenge. Trapped by her own impulsive affections and misplaced trust, Melissa struggles to find happiness in love without losing herself, her friends, or her sense of freedom. 

In this coming-of-age story, Mayberry’s well-meaning yet tragically flawed characters trace the thin line between young love and obsession.

Alright, thanks for being here, Melissa. Let's get right to it. How would you describe your book in 20 words or less without using the blurb?

As most authors, I get “What’s your book about?” a lot. In person, they usually get to know the ironic ending to book two, followed by a google search to prove it really happened. For the record, we’ll go with this:

My high school sweetheart dumped me for a teacher’s widow. It humiliated me, but I found a way to survive.

Poor girl. From this and the blurb, it sounds like it was rough. Let's find out a little bit about you. Where would you live if you could live anywhere in the world?

I travel as a nurse to various places across the United States. Every time I return to my home in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, I’m awestruck. This is where I want to be.

What’s your current guilty pleasure?

The main male character in my book, Mellifica, drinks strawberry soda so much that his kiss tastes like it. I love Sandy, and have developed a strawberry soda habit of my own. My husband even buys it for me (but I haven’t told him why …)

Haha - well, if your kissing start tasting like strawberry, hopefully your husband just enjoys it too! Did you have support at the beginning and/or during your writing?

I’ve done so many different things in my lifetime. When I started writing again, I got the eye-roll. As a matter of fact, my husband hasn’t even read Mellifica. If I have one regret about that, it’s that I haven’t told my parents that I’ve been published. If you’ve read Mellifica, you’d understand the relationship and why my success is a secret.

So this is part fiction, but part autobiography? That has to be hard. 

The main character, Mel, is me twenty years ago. The struggle there was relating to myself, not as I am now, but how I was then. I took everything personally then, now I look back and think I might have been crazy.

I think we are all super sensitive at that age. It is hard. What is it you love most about writing? What's the hardest part of writing for you?

Mellifica is written in first person and as a personal account of a humiliating break-up. The biggest hurdle was remembering the torment and putting it in writing. Subsequently, writing this book has become therapy for me.

Therapy through writing. I completely understand that. I do the same thing. Where do you get your inspiration?

I wrote an entire article to answer this question. I’ll try to make it brief here. 1. The story had to be written. 2. My character’s made me love them and keep going 3. My critiquing partners. Without them, I would have quit after chapter two.

Sounds like you have a good support system to keep you going. That's great. Which genres do you prefer to read?

I love romance, and I love YA. I have a teenage daughter and it’s so much more fun to read when I can talk to her about the story. I usually read it first (I’m the one with the money) and when she reads it she’s comes to me and says, “Mom, like OMG …”

I say, “I know with the …”

She says “Yes! And then they …”

Then I say: “I told you so!” And my husband stares at us and blinks. 

That's awesome that you can share with her that way! Do you prefer Twitter or Facebook?

I’m a Facebook Junkie!

If I give you a time machine, what time period and in what place would you travel to? 

I would go to England during the early 1900’s. Oddly enough I love Steam punk, but I don’t think I know enough to write it. 

Are you writing something else at the moment?

I am working on two new books, while Mellifica 2 is in editing. We hope to have it out by early winter, but I haven’t come up with a subtitle yet! 

Wow! Sounds like you are busy! I appreciate you stopping by today and chatting with me!

About Melissa

Melissa Mayberry believes in living a full life. As a wife, mother of four, full time nurse, and grad student, a story presented itself to her in such a way that she had to become a writer as well. 

Facebook: Melissa Mayberry / Mellifica


Excerpt from Chapter 1:

The party fell quiet while we waited. A blue Dodge Caravan stopped at the edge of the beach. Oh yeah, Chad said he’d come. Even though the van was a brand new 1992 model, my cousin looked like a dork driving a minivan. “It’s okay. It’s my cousin, but keep the liquor in your bag, Shanna.”
“Aww, is Chad some kind of nark?” she asked.
I nodded. “Most likely.”
Chad stepped out, but to my surprise the passenger door opened too. Why would he bring a date to my birthday party? Asshole. It’d be better without him here, and definitely better without one of those girls he hung out with.
A stranger stepped out of the van, and his eyes fell right to mine. From a distance, he didn’t appear to be the geeky type of friend Chad always made. He wore a loose black tank top with Khaki shorts. His clothes seemed pretty normal, especially compared to Chad’s; my cousin wore a Henley tucked into his cargo shorts. The strange guy stared, and I couldn’t turn away.
 He came over with Chad, king of the geeks. Where did he get the confidence to stare at me? They walked closer, and even though the beach was dim, his onyx eyes struck me intensely. My chest tightened, and my heart raced. As if this guy gave him confidence, Chad walked a little straighter than usual.
“Hello, Melissa. Happy birthday,” Chad said.
I nodded, glanced at Chad for a second and then back to his guest.
“Oh, this is Arien, my best friend.” Chad gestured toward his tall, muscular friend. “And this is Melissa, my cousin.”
Arien nodded. “Hey.”
When did Chad get a best friend? I would have seen him before.  Something wasn’t right about this guy or his sudden appearance.
Sandy wrapped both arms around me and leaned closer to my ear. “Want to go for a walk?”
Sandy’s voice startled me. This suspicious stranger had my brain working overtime.  “Um, I do, but Chad just got here. I can’t be rude.” I turned to the new arrivals. “Food and drinks are on the table. Get a plate and come back to join us.”
            Why haven’t I met this guy? They returned from the table. Both had soda, but neither was eating. Chad turned toward the river where some people still played. “Who’s here?”
            I didn’t pay attention to Chad.
“Melissa, I asked you a question,” Chad said louder.
Everyone turned to me as I dropped my stare from Arien. A flame went through my body, and I wanted to run to the river’s edge. Arien smirked. He had been staring back, as if he had a chance with me. Huge ego—he must be Chad’s best friend.
I had to play the situation off as mere curiosity, so I squared my shoulders and cleared my throat. “So, Arien, if you and Chad are best friends, why haven’t we met?”
He looked at me and raised an eyebrow. “I guess we just missed each other.”  The warm gaze in his eyes made me think his words carried a double meaning. His wavy blond hair caught the sea breeze, and the firelight danced across his face.

I leaned against Sandy to ensure we all understood this stranger didn’t have a chance with me.