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Friday, June 26, 2009

What kind of contest would you like?

Now that all 4 of my Druids books are out I'm thinking of having a contest. My question to you is, What kind? There are a lot out there: scavenger hunts, leave a comment on a blog, those kinds of things. I want something different...but what? Fix the collapsible panels on my website, win a book doesn't sound too intriguing! (Though I'd be grateful, they're driving me bonkers!)

Rules: Must pertain to me, my Druids books, and have a realistic prize. The person whose contest I pick will receive their choice of either a Victorian purse or a box of Godiva chocolates. Their choice. The contest runs from June 26, 2009-July 10, 2009.

Ideas? Leave a comment on my blog, twitter me @Ladyisabel, or email me!
Murder and Magick
Sex and Subterfuge
Desert and Destiny
Temptations and Treachery

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Temptations and Treachery!

Now out! Temptations and Treachery, the 4th and final book of my Dark Desire of the Druids series is out today!

Blurb: Lady Isadore Harrington is a well-bred English lady. She's traveled the world in search of magickal artifacts to help her people and has seen the best and worst of humanity. But she's never taken time for herself—never done just for herself. Going to Philadelphia as the magicker emissary between England and the Americas, she intends to rectify that.

Then she meets James Blackthorne. Tall, handsome, witty, commanding, he brings out feelings in her she's always wanted to experience but never has. He makes her want him, makes her forget all else but him. Virginal, but far from naïve, Isadore is tempted to experience everything James has to offer. Cautious by nature, she offers her body to him and discovers all her sexual desires fulfilled.

But the magicker world is far from safe, and Isadore is threatened from many who are jealous and distrustful. Temptations abound, but treachery is never far behind.

Excerpt:

Isadore woke to find herself wrapped in the arms of Morgana's cousin. She remembered what happened last night, the vision she experienced, James holding her. She smiled as she thought of Lucien's snide comments about him, but dismissed them. James had been nothing but kind to her—sardonic, but she found that charming.

Carefully turning over, Isadore looked at the sleeping man.

She'd never slept with a man in her bed, despite her druidic heritage. The arousal that pooled low in her at the intimacy of their positions surprised her. And aroused her more. Despite that, her body ached from the incessant visions, her throat sore and she hoped she hadn't screamed and embarrassed herself.

Her fingers were light as she brushed his red-blonde hair off his forehead, traced the dark circles under his eyes. Embarrassed at her move, Isadore slipped out of bed. James didn't stir. Splashing water on her face from the basin on the table, she found a brush and ran it through her hair.

Irisi wasn't in the room. Isadore paused as she thought about last night. She remembered James carrying her upstairs, she remembered Irisi bathing her face with a cool cloth, but not much else until she woke this morning. At least not much beyond the horrific visions.

Flushed with embarrassment at not only her position but Irisi seeing it, she pulled the bell cord.

She had to dress before James woke—and there he was.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

If it's Wednesday...

I'm blogging over at Slip into Something Victorian! Today's topic: Victorian Mistresses

Tomorrow, Thursday June 25, the last in my Dark Desire of the Druids series, Temptations and Treachery, will be released from Ravenous. It's Lady Isadore Harrington's story. I originally wasn't going to do a 4th book, but couldn't leave Isadore out! I loved her too much, she's such a part of the series, especially Murder and Magick and Desert and Destiny. Who's the lucky guy for Lady Isadore? You might remember James Blackthorne, Morgana's cousin, from Sex and Subterfuge. Their path is not an easy one, and hidden obsticals lie in wait. Temptations abound, but treachery is never far behind.

Excerpt:
James tried not to stare as he helped his guest out of the carriage. She smiled her thanks, all charm and beauty. The moment he’d seen her, he’d lost all thought. As he did then, now he traced the lines of her curves with his eyes as she started toward the steps of the house. Shaking his head to focus on the moment at hand, he checked his reaction, and wondered how she could be related to Granv—

“Wait.” Takoda slipped past him, jerking his head at the house. James turned sharply. Distracted, it took him a moment to register the reason for concern.

His cousin Morgana’s house lay in darkness. Unusual since they were expected by the servants still in residence. Not a light blazed from the windows. Takoda gestured for them to remain outside as he jogged to the rear entrance. James ushered the ladies to one side of the front door. Still closed, he warily opened it.

“Stay here,” he ordered them.

“I can be of assistance,” Lady Isadore whispered in her proper English voice. The firmness in it wasn’t false modesty, either, he sensed.

James grunted in annoyance, but said nothing to her comment and continued inside. Gathering his magicks to him, he cautiously made his way over the threshold.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Review

I admit, I spend an inordinate amount of time sending my books out for reviews. As a reader, I won't buy a new author unless someone--another reader, a print mag, an online review, or anyone not Oprah who doesn't read romances and gravitates toward the depressing--favorably reviews the story. And includes good reasons as to why or why not they enjoyed the tale.

Coffee Time Romance just reviewed Hot Water in the Green Love Anthology. Read the review of the whole anthology here. I've excerpted my story:

Hot Water
Ms. Roman has written an emotionally and stimulatingly charged story full of love and sensuality. This was not only beautifully composed but the type of tale I love to read, where you can connect with the characters. This story was easy to read from beginning to end and the conclusion of it will not leave you hanging, which made me a very happy reader.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Russian Aristocracy

That's the tentative title of my Russian Epic. I've got Princes, Counts, a Tsar and Tsarevich, Royal Guards, and possibly a Sultan. In Russia, Princes aren't next in line. It's just another title. The Tsar is the Emperor, the Tsarevich is the heir, and all other children are Grand Dukes and Grand Duchesses.

To be a Prince in Russia isn't like being the Prince of Wales. It's just a title. A high title, with populated land (meaning serfs) but it's just a title. There was no line to being Tsar, unless you planned a palace coup, but that's another story.

Katria and Nikolai. They're in love, the deep passionate kind. Their marriage is called off, their lives endangered, their families threatened. Russian Epics at their finest! Move over, Tolstoy! Or maybe not...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Crimean War and you

Not so perfect together. I have 1 slim volume, and 2 very large, very detailed books on the Crimean War. Luckily, they come with an index, because I truly have no desire to read through them! But they do have some cool pictures.

Hmm, I can only find 2 at the moment. I can't imagine where that 3rd large one went to.

Crimea: The Great Crimean War 1854-1856 by Trevor Royle
The Origins of the Crimean War by Brison D. Gooch

Naming them is harder than usual, because of the patronymic, the Russian middle name. Everyone had one like Worf, son of Mogh in Trek, it meant the same thing: -ovich/-yevich/-yich for son of and yevna/-ovna/-ichna for daughter of.

The patronymic is an official part of the name. It's used in all official documents as well as when addressing somebody both formally and among friends. For instance, you'd rarely formally address a person named Mikhail simply as Mikhail, but rather as Mikhail followed by his patronymic Mikhail Nikolayevich or Mikhail Sergeyevich. However, when a person is called by a diminutive, Misha for Mikhail, the patronymic is rarely used.

See the problem? Off I go to name, name, name. I intend to have this completely plotted and broken by Friday.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

New WIPs

I haven't worked on anything, really worked, in about 6 weeks. I've edited, I've researched, I've thought, but not really worked. I now have 4 stories I'd like to have finished by October. I don't know what happened here, but there it is, NOT in the order I intend to write them!


  • 1 paranormal contemporary
  • 1 War of 1812
  • 1 American Revolution
  • 1 Crimean War in Russia

I've taken out books from my library that haven't seen the light of day in a decade. Children's books I didn't know were even available! (Nice condensed versions with nifty pictures.) I've exhausted Wikipedia and their reference links. And still, I can't get "In 1814 we took a little trip, along with Colonel Jackson down the mighty Mississipp..." out of my head. I'm not writing in 1814 OR about New Orleans! Burning of DC! I wonder if there's a song about that.

Oh, songs! Hmm, a new avenue of research to pursue. I love songs of the time. Hmm, thinking...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

English Language and all its idiosyncrasies

I love the blog, The "Blog" of "Unnecessary" Quotations. It's amusing to see what people put in quotes. And what running commentary people will make up for those unnecessary quotations.

I have my own copy (I think this one was published in the 1960s) of Strunk & White's Elements of Style. I hadn't read through it, it's not one of those read from cover to cover books. But now that I'm published, I am about half-way through it. Just a refresher course, can't hurt.

At the ungodly hour of 7am on Sunday mornings on History International they run a program called Adventures in English where the host (I don't know his name) takes us through the many evolutions of the English language and why there are more than one name for different things. Like jail and gaol and prison. Saxon, Celtic, and Norman. (I may have that mixed up but did try to check the origins before posting this blog.)

I just started the new book, Origins of the Specious: Myths and Misconceptions of the English Language. It's a great book on the origin of words in the English language. Like fiery: makes no sense since fire is spelled, well, f-i-r-e. Apparently, it's a hold over from the 13th century when fire was spelled f-i-e-r.

I never considered myself SUCH a grammar person until I realized how often I gravitated toward these shows/books. OK, not such a...I am a stickler, and I do judge when you use poor grammar, but not SUCH A stickler...

@ Slip into Something Victorian

I'm extremely late posting this, but I'm over at Slip into Something Victorian today blogging about research.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Promo, blogs, chats, and more!

I'm doing a lot of it lately, and it's taking up a lot of time. But in the process, I've discovered a lot of new places: blogs, authors, sites. I've met some fantastic people along the way and have made new online friends. It's been a lot more fun than I anticipated!

I'm now trying to organize a blog tour for my Scandalous Victorians and our anthology which is released the end of July. This will be loads of fun and a chance to see even more blogs I didn't know about until, well, yesterday.

And I now finally have a plot outline for an historical! Not colonial, for some reason I couldn't wrap my brain around conflict (see yesterday's post) in pre-Revolutionary times. I have NO idea why. Probably because I didn't want it to be set during the war. Go figure. Anyway, I'm in 1811 Washington. And I've got angst! And conflict! Loads of conflict! And a big sexy hero...yum.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Conflict

I struggled all day yesterday with conflict in my American Historical. Most of the day. A good 6 1/2 hours worth of the beautiful day when I could've been doing something else beside sitting in front of the computer and scowling at the screen. Looking back, it could have been anything else I did yesterday. Seriously.

I wanted this story to be a non-paranormal, spicy, angsty, gripping historical. All well and good. I wanted this to take place pre-American Revolution. Ok, fine. I want this to be longer than 50 pages. Because as it's shaping up now, I can't imagine writing more than 50 pages on the current plot. Or lack thereof.

Here's the problem as I see it in the harsh light of Monday morning: I can't seem to work my head around conflict in pre-Revolutionary America that doesn't involve Indian attacks or the war itself.
There are 100 conflicts out there, emotional and external. There are 1000 ways I can write this stupid freakin' story. There is exactly 0 ZERO ways I can think of to do it.
So in sleeping on it, and having bizarre dreams involving Christmas, I came up with something that might work. The issue was resources. With enough money, there's no conflict. With enough people around you, there's no problem. So take all that away and what do you have? Problems! Issues! Conflict! Angst and heartache and separation and above all, sexual tension. Gotta have that.
So now, despite 8 hours of sleep, some exhaustion and lack of caffeine this morning, and missing some key summer clothes, I HAVE A CONFLICT! It's pathetically exciting, but there you have it.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

D-Day

Today marks the 65th Anniversary of the invasion at Normandy Beaches in France by American, Canadian, and British troops, supported by Polish, Norwegian, and some Free France soldiers. Not many veterans of that battle, or other World War II battles, remain. Unlike World War I, this war has been remembered and commemorated hundreds of times.

So if you know a Vet, say thanks. Even if they weren't on the shores of Normandy-Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, or Sword-thank them anyway.

And if you ever get a chance to visit The National World War II Museum in New Orleans, I highly recommend it. It's a wonderful experience with enough stuff to amaze even the more knowledgeable historian.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Join me! (6/5/09)


Join me Friday night 7-8 p.m. EST for a chat on Savannah Chase's Yahoo Group! I'll be talking about most anything, sharing excerpts from Desert & Destiny, and answering any questions. I'll even share my renovating horror stories, if you really want to know what it's like to have no kitchen and walk around your oven and fridge all day. But the mental image is probably enough. :)
It's easy to join!

Relaxin'

Sent in Temptations and Treachery yesterday and today feel really positive about it. None of that oh, I should've...Oh, but if I just added...so far so good.

Except now I realize I need to fix the web page for that book. *sigh* It's never ending.

I'm going to focus on my contemporary paranormal now. Dig into the other aspects of occult phenomena, see what new and interesting things I can come up with. I'm really excited about this story, there's so much I want to do with it!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Dark Desire of the Druids

Today only (June 3) all my books are 1/2 off! And Sex & Subterfuge is the book of the day. Read about the American Magickers, their trials & tribulations, and how one English earl woos and wins the heart of the American master magicker

Also, my cover for Desert & Destiny is up for best cover at Wicked Thorn & Roses. If you like it, please vote for it. :)

I'm 28 pages from finishing my absolutely last, final, you can't make me do it again read through of Temptations and Treachery. I've added close to 11,ooo words, have really focused on Isadore's romance, and feel this makes for a much better book. I'm very happy with it. (Thanks to my editor, Holly, who suggested I do this!)

Monday, June 1, 2009

Guest blogging today

I'm over at Savannah Chase's blog, talking about life and writing. Come visit!

Goddess Fish Blog Tour Partner

Goddess Fish Blog Tour Partner
Goddess Fish Blog Tour Partner