Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #18 -- Summer Songs

It's getting hot out here!

In honor of today's 90-plus-degree weather, I've come up with a list of 13 of my fave summertime songs. Some have the word summer in them, some are just quintessential summer-sounding tunes. Break out the sunscreen and flip-flops, baby. Here comes summer!

1. In the Summertime, Mungo Jerry
2. Hot Fun in the Summer Time, Sly and the Family Stone
3. Summer, War
4. Boys of Summer, Don Henley
5. Warm California Sun, The Rivieras
6. Vacation, Go-Gos
7. California Girls, the Beach Boys
8. Under the Boardwalk, The Drifters
9. Soak up the Sun, Cheryl Crow
10. Summer Song, Chad and Jeremy
11. School's Out, Alice Cooper
12. Miserlou, Dick Dale and His Del-Tones
13. Summer Lovin', Grease

What did I miss? What's your favorite tune for the lazy days of summer?

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Holy Cats!

That's my three-year-old's favorite expression. I've been saying it a lot today because Angie told me my new book is on the schedule for this fall.

Oh, have I mentioned that I sold another book to Samhain? :)

It's a fun, contemporary romance set in the tiny European country of Laurivenia.

What, you've never heard of Laurivenia? Just because I made it up? Sheesh...

Anyway, the working title is Counterfeit Nanny, though that's probably going to change. (Becka Goings...paging Becka Goings...Title Goddess assistance needed, stat!) And for those of you who've been asking "When are you going to write something LONGER?" ya go.

Granted, it's category-length, but that's still twice as long as my novellas. :P

So I'm excited and thrilled and nervous and scared to look at the calendar. Holy cats, indeed.

Hope your week is going well!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Come Visit!

Hey all --

I'm guest-blogging over on the Samhain Weblog today. Drop by and discuss romantic movie moments with me!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #17 -- Sesame Street Edition

When I was a kid I loved Sesame Street. (Side note: why is it that I can't get my kids hooked on it? Sigh...) One of my favorite elements of the show was the parodies -- the song lyrics slightly changed, the new versions of TV shows or fairy tales. That sly, off-beat sense of humor tickled me. I roamed around YouTube to find thirteen fun ones -- except for my second choice, which I love but isn't posted there. Enjoy!

1. The Beatles-esque ode to the Letter B (When I find I can't remember, what comes after A and before C, my mother always whispers, Letter B...)

2. Monsterpiece Theater: Waiting For Elmo (Beckett for preschoolers!)

3. Monsterpiece Theater: The Sound of Music

5. News Flash -- Pinocchio

7. Monsterpiece Theater: Twelve Angry Men

8. Eatin' Cookie -- newer, so I didn't see this as a kid -- but carries on the tradition of using non-kid-appropriate base material for fun parodies.

10. Monsterpiece Theater: Inside/Outside Story

11. Hey Food, another great Beatles parody

12. Monsterpiece Theater: The Postman Always Rings Twice (seriously, what is it with using really non-kid-safe material as the basis for a parody? This is so written for the parents...)

13. Monsterpiece Theater: Monsters With Dirty Faces (Gotta love muppets doing '30s gangster parodies...)

So there you go. Tougher than I thought, since many of my favorites don't fall into the category of parodies (Aliens and the telephone! A banana in Ernie's ear!)

Did I miss your favorite? Let me know which ones to check out!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Book BIN Tuesday -- Wild, Wicked and Wanton

Oh, my.

My, my, my.

Better get a fan and a bucket of ice, because you're going to need it!

This week's Book BIN offering -- Wild, Wicked, and Wanton, by Jaci Burton.

I just finished it today, and let me tell you, this book is HOT.

This is one VERY erotic romance, and not for the faint of heart. (If you're reading this post, Mom, go practice your piano. Seriously. Back *away* from the computer.) But what I loved about it was the fact that romance was still at the heart of each of the novellas.

Here's a sneak peek at the stories:

Three friends...three secret desires...three chances to make it all come true.

They're inseparable best friends who delight in sharing their wildest secrets and dares. But their latest bet is the boldest one of all: each must sleep with whomever the other two have chosen for her. And come back with every juicy detail...

Abby married the town bad boy. And he lived up to his reputation, bedding any woman who let her guard down. She swore off men for good, but never counted on a pair of sexy veterinarians who are fulfilling a desire of their own.

Blaire is the town heartbreaker. Afraid to commit, she's broken off three engagements. Yet there's one man she never had the courage to bed. The one man she really loved. But now, the decision is out her hands.

Callie is the sensible one....but beneath it all she's a true romantic, with the broken heart to prove it. Now her long-dormant fantasies may be getting a workout. A new man enters her life and everything about him is irresistible.

So if your taste in romance runs to the hotter side, take my advice and Buy It Now!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

"Go Practice Your Piano"

When I was a kid, we had a cat that was, shall we say, frequently amorous. On the deck, right outside the family room, to be specific.

I, of course, was too young to understand what was going on, and I'd invariably ask my parents, "Why are the cats fighting?"

My parents, fine upstanding people that they are, would answer, "Go practice your piano."

Over time, that phrase became shorthand for any uncomfortable or embarrassing subject. Particularly sex.

So when I sold to Samhain, one of the first things I told my mom was that there would be lots of piano-practicing in my books. It's kind of awkward, knowing my mom is reading my books, because they don't leave much to the imagination. But on the positive side, she's informed me that she's gotten *really* good on the piano. And knowing that she supports my writing is worth any embarrassment.

She also brainstormed the story for Ritual Love with me, helping me shape it into something I'm really proud of. It was a no-brainer to dedicate the book to her.

In case you haven't seen it, here's the dedication:

To Mom. For always believing in me, for sharing the magic of Iona, for being my friend and my biggest fan. I love you.

Now go practice your piano.

And on that note, I'm practice my piano. ;)

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #16 -- Thirteen Things I'm Looking Forward To

Thirteen things I'm looking forward to...

1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I probably won't be camping out at the bookstore the night before, but it'll be in my hot little hands within the first week.
2. My 20th high school reunion, in August.
Followed by...
3. The release of Tease Me, Please Me, three days later! (See post directly below for a peek at the cover.)
4. The end of fastpitch. Does this season last for a year and a half, or is it just me?
5. The end of the school year, and summer vacation.
6. Disneyland, baby!
7. Suz Brockmann's newest release (August 14, but who's counting?)
8. Finally buying a wireless set-up for the home computers.
9. RWA 2008. No, that's not a typo. I can't make it this year -- but next year is already marked on my calendar.
10. Parent's Night Out. Once a month, our health club provides a night of free babysitting. The DH and I get a dinner out together, sans kids. Woo-hoo!
11. Shrek the Third, which I think will be our first whole-family movie theater experience.
12. Polishing up a few manuscripts and getting them out the door.
13. The laundry finally being done so I can go to bed. *wink*

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Cover Love

I am super excited because I just got permission to share my latest cover -- so here it is!

Isn't it just fab?

This is the print cover for my anthology, which will be released August 21. It includes all three of my strip novellas -- Taking the Cake, Strip Tease, and Challenging Carter.

So look for it at a bookstore near you -- starting in August!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Book BIN Tuesday -- Lucy Monroe

So I was going to post about Moon Awakening today for Book BIN Tuesday, but then I read Lucy's story in Hot Desert Nights last night (up till one-thirty a.m, dadnabit), a three-in-one special from Presents, and decided I just have to pimp Lucy's stuff in general.

Yeah, I'm a Lucy Monroe fan from way back, and don't think I've found a book of hers yet that I *haven't* enjoyed. But both of these new-ish releases are extra great.

First, Moon Awakening -- Scottish historical with a dash of paranormal. I loved the story, loved the world-building, and loved the characters. I can't wait to see where she goes with the next in the Children of the Moon series. Very, verrra cool. :)

Then it's on to Mistress to a Sheikh, in the Hot Desert Nights anthology. I loved getting a glimpse of some previous couples, and I'm a sucker for a great sheikh story.
So even though these are very different stories, I loved them both. Next on my list? Satisfaction Guaranteed, another Lucy book -- of course. :)

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #15 -- Thirteen Reasons I'm Not Ready For TT This Week


Thursday already?

I'm so not ready to write up a TT list this week. Here's why...

1. End of year stuff with the online learning program is keeping me busy.

2. Three fastpitch games so far this week, with another game and a practice still to come.

3. I had a great idea for a new trilogy and am itching to write it down.

4. I have to make a brunch dish for my mom's meeting tomorrow.

5. Weeds. They're taking over. I have to destroy them.

6. My youngest's preschool just announced they're shutting down after this year, and I have to find a new school for next year.

7. Laundry. It's taking over. I have to dest...oh, wait. Kids going to school naked. Never mind.

8. Edits for new manuscript submission need to be done.

9. Couldn't think of a topic.

10. Got sucked into a new book and couldn't put it down. (Bad Girl Bridesmaids, by Susanna Carr.)

11. Had to smoosh a spider that scampered across my office floor late last night and I'm still traumatized.

12. Forgot it was almost Thursday until just a few minutes ago.

13. It's more fun to whine. At least once in a while. :)

So what about you? What excuses are you using this week?

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Tagged Again -- Eight Things About Me

I've been tagged by Kate Johnson/Cat Marsters to blog about Eight Things About Me.

Here are the rules:

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.

2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.

3. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.

4. Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them they're tagged, and to read your blog.

So here's my list:

1. I once sang karaoke, under duress, in a restaurant in the middle of Munich, Germany. The theme from Mahogany, which I didn't actually know, but was one of the few English-language songs available.

2. I have a new yellow fuzzy bathrobe that gets so much static electricity in it, when I take it off in a darkened room it throws off blue sparks.

3. My eldest is annoyed with me that I won't wake her up at midnight to show her the sparks.

4. I do most of my best work late at night. My children, however, don't see that as a good enough reason to sleep past 6:30. Even on weekends.

5. My 20th high school reunion is this year, three days before my print anthology is released. I'll be carrying bookmarks and trying not to be too obnoxious.

6. On a weeklong horseback-riding camping trip the summer before I started high school, someone stepped on my glasses in the middle of the night and broke them. The very first night. I was almost completely blind for the entire trip. I have pictures of places I don't remember visiting.

7. I actually belong to a health club that runs a wellness challenge, similar to the one described in Challenging Carter. No strip aerobics, though. :)

8. I hate following rules. That's why I'm only tagging two people -- that, and the fact that most of the people I tag for these things either just did a tag from me recently, or have already done this meme.

So I'm tagging Diane Craver and Linda Winfree. Have fun, ladies!

Monday, May 07, 2007

Book BIN Tuesday -- Lover Revealed

Yeah, I know.

I blogged about the Black Dagger Brotherhood a few weeks ago.

Sue me.

I just finished Lover Revealed this weekend and had to add it to my Book BIN Tuesday line-up. It's that good. Dang, I knew I should have waited longer to read it -- HOW am I going to wait until fall for the next book?

Oh, well. Guess I'll just have to go back and re-read the series. :)

What are you glomming these days?

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #14 -- Thirteen Fictional Crushes


I admit it. I'm a sucker for a great hero. Whether in a book or onscreen, I love falling for a fabulous guy, even if it is just for a short time. I love that little hitch that comes from watching a hero do something so sweet or romantic or thoughtful, it makes you melt just a bit.

Luckily, my hubby tolerates my temporary crushes, because he knows that they're, well, fictional. :) Here they are:

Sam, Troubleshooters series, Suzanne Brockmann. If you've read any of the Troubleshooters books, you know what I mean. Suz can write amazing heroes with the best of 'em, but I've always had a soft spot for Sam. Watching him struggle to do the right thing, when his soulmate seemed out of his reach, was just heartbreaking.

Jack, While You Were Sleeping. His monologue while playing cards with his comatose brother is both hilarious and touching. And the way he watches Lucy walk away after their kiss under the mistletoe -- sigh!

Gilbert, Anne of Green Gables series, L.M. Montgomery. My first introduction to the romantic hero. I loved watching their relationship develop over the years. I felt *invested* in it, darnit! Something about a long-drawn-out HEA makes the payoff that much sweeter.

Lachlan, Moon Awakening, Lucy Monroe. I just finished this book last night, and loved it -- I think it's my favorite by Lucy so far. And Lachlan is a great, gorgeous Alpha male, in every sense of the word. :)

Mark Darcy, Bridget Jones's Diary. Two favorites -- the scene where he tells her he likes her just the way she is, and the cooking scene/dinner with Bridget's friends. Swoon-worthy.

Lord St. Vincent, Devil in Winter, Lisa Kleypas. My favorite of the Wallflowers' heroes, he redefines the reformed bad boy.

William Thacker, Notting Hill. One of Hugh Grant's best romantic movie roles. You just root for him to get the girl, despite the odds.

Cooper Blackstock, Head over Heels, Susan Andersen. A stand-up kinda guy, with a secret side that's *so* appealing. Plus there's that whole sexy vibe he's got going. Yowza!

Rick, Casablanca. Self-sacrificing, suave, and some of the best lines in movie history.

Rhage, Lover Eternal, J.R. Ward. I had a hard time narrowing down which hero from the Black Dagger Brotherhood was my fave. I settled on Rhage because he made me cry more than any of the others. So far.

Robin Hood, The Adventures of Robin Hood. Errol Flynn swashbuckled his way into my heart with this one.

Vane Kattalakis, Night Play, Sherrilyn Kenyon. I love his utter devotion to Bride, helping her to see the beauty she truly is.

And my fictional crush to end all fictional crushes...

Mr. Darcy, Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen. First there was the book, which I read initially in Junior High (and liked, although some of it went over my head at that point). Then the movie, the Olivier version, which I saw at about the same time. Then...the miniseries. Anyone who knows me, knows I'm a Firth Fanatic all the way. I absolutely love every moment of that version, and could sit down and watch it all the way through over and over. If my kids wouldn't rebel. I liked Bride and Prejudice, the Bollywood musical adaptation. (And isn't Aishwarya Rai a stunner?) And I know the newest version is somewhat controversial, but I enjoyed it, too. I was initially skeptical of Matthew Macfayden, but he won me over, too. There's a scene in the movie where he hands Lizzie into the carriage, and as he walks away, he flexes his hand, as if the sensation of touching her is too much for him. Gave me chills. This is one fictional crush -- in all his incarnations -- that will stay with me for the rest of my life.

So what have I missed? Who are your fictional crushes?

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Book BIN, er, Wednesday :)

Ever heard the phrase, "A day late and a dollar short"?

Well, that's me these days. :)

What with end-of-month progress reports, and a 1100 word article on strangers due, oh, tomorrow, and two kids in fastpitch and the end of the school year staring me in the face, I'm WAAAAY off schedule for pretty much everything.

Which hopefully explains why I'm late with this week's Book BIN post.

I couldn't just put it off 'til next week, though, because I'm so excited about this book!

Fabu author Susanna Carr has a new release out, and it looks scrumptious. Bad Girl Bridesmaids is in stores today. Here's the scoop:

These bridesmaids are ready to trade in their taffeta dresses for something much sexier.
At a wedding, Kelsey Morgan meets a hot millionaire who's really going somewhere-and wants to take her with him-in "Serial Bridesmaid on the Loose."

Tara Watkins started a blog called "The Bridesmaid Diaries." Now she's about to see the best man who's been reading up on her-and is determined to relive a wild night from their past.
Feeling like the "Wedding Wrecker," Amber Hughes is a bridesmaid again-and this time she runs into a seductive former classmate who hopes to make this wedding even crazier than her last.


Don't they sound like fun? And even better, if you join my newsletter group before next Tuesday, *you* could win a copy of Bad Girl Bridesmaids! Yes, it's my prize for this month.

So go sign up! And don't forget to Buy It Now!