Monday, March 31, 2008

Who doth occupy that lofty seat?

Yes, it's Monday and of course I'm running late today. Oh I was up early, swigging my drug of choice (vanilla coffee) and realizing I needed laundry in a HURRY! Hence the delay in my blog. I think better in clean underwear!!

So...who's on top, you ask? For me, that's an easy one. I'll take a lusty Lord, thank you. A Knight of the Realm. Whether jousting or soliciting my hand for a waltz, he's unquestionably in control, not about to be refused and staring at me with a great deal of heat in his gaze. (Hey. It's my fantasy! Let me enjoy it, okay?)

He is a man for the ages, a man of many faces - all of them rugged, desirable and guaranteed to put a flutter into a maiden's heart. (All right, let's not quibble about the "maiden" bit. Like I said, it's MY fantasy!!) And he dresses flamboyantly, secure enough in his masculinity to be able to deal with codpieces, ruffles, cloaks and hats. Isn't it a shame that part of history has vanished into denim and baseball caps? Sigh.

In case you're in doubt, you'll see below EXACTLY who I'm talkin' about. There isn't a dude out there who better represents my choice for WHO'S ON TOP!!! For anyone who persists in believing that the Historical romance novel is dead, I say "POO"!!! Just take a look at the inestimably perfect Mr. Darcy (aka Mr. Yummy Colin Firth). If this is "dead", move over in the casket because I want in!!! What do you think?

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Who's on Top?

Well in the Ci Section of Hussy-land, it'd be cowboys, or Native Americans. Or in a perfect world, Native American cowboys. Yeah baby! But let's simplify and say Cowboys.

And I'm not alone in my love of the Cowboy. Consider the stats, people. The PBR (Pro Bull Rider for those of you who thought I was speaking of beer) has a fan base of over 16 million people - nearly 40% of whom are women.
In 2005, the PRCA (Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association sanctioned 662 rodeos in 4 states and four Canadian provinces. Those rodeos paid more than $35 million in prize money. The Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the PRCA's premier championship event held each December in Las Vegas, offers one of the largest purses in professional sports. In 2005, the Wrangler NFR set a record, offering $5.25 million in total prize money. And during the annual 10 day event, the Wrangler NFR draws approximately 175,000 fans.

Have I made my point? We love cowboys. We love seeing them "do their thang", cheering for them, "ooohing", "aaahing", and "oh shiting" for them as we watch.

And me? I like watching them, talking to them and writing about them. They are true romantic figures from our history that still live and walk among us. And sure, not every one of them looks like Clint Eastwood in his hay-day, but they all share something that makes them special - the cowboy heart. Ahhh, makes this gal's heart do a fast tw0-step for sure.

And it's not just in this country. Cowboys are immortalized in film and books and videos and art the world over. Don't believe me? Well check out this video from India.

Movie: Kadhalan
Actor: Prabhu Deva
Song: Muqabala Muqabala

Okay, so it's not exactly the kind of Cowboy idol we're accustomed to. More of a Spagetti western meets Gone with the Wind Costumes and sets, mixed with MC Hammer and Michael Jackson dance moves. But hey, it's got cowboys!

Before I go, let me say in closing that when it comes to being on top, I'm neutral. Top, bottom, on the side, in the saddle or on the fence. Doesn't much matter to me. We Hussies are flexible :)

Happy Sunday!!


Saturday, March 29, 2008

Lethal Hussy Does Battle With Computer Virus

Our Lethal Hussy, Nathalie, will not be able to post today since she's currently doing battle with a nasty virus that launched an attack on her laptop. We're hoping Nat will kick some virus butt and be back blogging soon!

So we don't leave you blogless for the day, here are some odd but true news stories from around the world that fall into the "Not in this Lifetime" category for me.

1. From Romania: Man superglues condom to penis to save on safe sex

Yep. The man and his wife (parents of five) decided they didn't want to have more kids. So they bought condoms. Only the condoms didn't fit. They were too loose. So the man superglued one to his penis to get it to stay on (and thinking he could get more mileage out of it.)

Can you say DUMBASS????

He ended up at a medical clinic to get it removed.

2. From the US: Judge uses sex toy during trials

The 57-year-old judge was spotted doing something with his hands under his robes. A policeman in the court sadi he said the judge pumping a tube between his legs. Other witnesses said they heard hissing noises. And the court clerk claims she saw the judge's penis at least 20 times because of his clumsy maneuvers.

The Creek County, Oklahoma judge said the sex toy, used to extend the penis, was a 'gag gift' from a friend.

Again.... DUMBASS!!!!

3. 18-year-old Lesbian auctions her virginity online

Oh yes. First she had it up for sale on E-Bay. But they removed her listing. So she pimped it on her own website.

Rosie Reid revealed the highest bidder offered $20,500 for the honor and that he's a divorced engineer and father of two. She claims the experience was horrible, but served its purpose.

Which was????

To keep from running up large student debts (she's a student at Bristol University), and to "spark a debate" on the ever larger growing crisis over funding student college loans.

oooooookay. But still .... dumbass!! Prostitution is prositution no matter what you use the money for.

4. Size of brain determines lust for sex

So says Austrailian scientions. A group of neurophysiologists from the University of Melbourne say that based on their research the degree of excitement depends upon the activity of the part of the brain called 'amygdala'. (Note: Typically this part of the brain is the size of an almond and is also the area that is involve in the "flight or fight" reactions of humans.

But according to the research, the amygdala will respond faster than any other part of the brain. The bigger the amygdala, the bigger the sexual lust. People with large parts of the amygdala not functioning were almost indifferent to sex.

Well, does that mean that soon we'll have "Amygdala enhancement drugs" on the market?


Okay, before I leave you to your Saturday, here are some pretty useless but fun facts:

Barbie's full name is Barbara Millicent Roberts.

American Airlines saved $40,000 in 1987 by eliminating one olive from each salad in first class.

30% of Chinese adults live with their parents.

200 million people in China live on less than $1 a day.

There are 100 million internet users in China. Some of the sites they can't access are BBC news, Amnesty International and

People spend about two weeks of their lives at traffic lights!

Left handed people live slightly shorter lives than right handed people.
The ant, when intoxicated, will always fall over to its right side.

The original name of Bank of America was Bank of Italy.

Toxic house plants poison more children than household chemicals.

Topless saleswomen are legal in Liverpool, England, but only in tropical fish stores.

In Bahrain, a male gynecologist can only examine a woman's private parts through a mirror.

If the entire population of earth was reduced to exactly 100 people,50% of the world's currency would be held by 6 people.

In comic strips, the person on the left always speaks first.

Happy Weekend! And keep your fingers crossed that our Lethal Hussy stomps the crap out of that virus!!


Friday, March 28, 2008

Not in this Liftetime? Then when?

Not in this lifetime?

Well if not this one, then when? Vampires aren’t going to reincarnate, they won’t die unless they have an unlucky encounter with a slayer and since I’m writing the story, they will live forever in the arms of their beloveds. Same thing for weres, gargoyles and all other immortal paranormals.

But, they may have some limits as to what they are willing to do within their forevers. So come with me and step into the shoes of an immortal paranormal and play the game - what would you do?

If we take away the fear of death and the limitation of aging, would we find there are fewer nevers, or, not evers? What do you think?

Would you bet everything you have on a horse that has horrible odds, but could payout incredible odds because you know you have an eternity to make up the money? Would that be a safe bet for an immortal?

Would you suddenly take risks you'd never consider because you know only a few specific things can harm or even kill you? Would risk then become as easy as stepping through a door into another room? Would you scoff at naysayers and plunge into a new venture?

Would you go back to college and get that degree you always wanted but worried you didn't have money enough, or time enough to complete that dream? Is growing older holding you back from realizing dreams? Would you try for that new career you've always yearned for, because after all, you will have many careers?

Would you find the courage to ask that hunky guy out on a date because you know the answer is already no if you don’t ask?

Would you find life fuller and brighter and teeming with possibilities because you’re no longer worried or afraid of consequences of taking a risk? Of course, with risks there would be more opportunity for failure, but would you laugh when you failed instead of bemoaning the loss because you know you'll have countless more chances to try again?

How many times would you reinvent yourself? Seek out new adventures? Try new things?

Just what would you do differently if this lifetime was forever?

But stop… why not do them now? Why not wake up at this moment and make those changes, seize those opportunities? Why not?

What is really keeping us from braving changes and grabbing opportunities?

Go ahead, live as an immortal!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Gettin' Naughty - Limits

“Not In this Lifetime!”
“Not only no, but hell no!”
“Whoa! Stop right there!”
“Unh-uh! No way!”
“Don’t even think about it!”

Sound familiar? We all have limits, lines we are not willing to cross, involving a variety of activities. When it comes to sex, it’s important that our partners know what those limits are before taking things to the bedroom. This is important in all relationships, but especially so if you're in a D/s relationships.

While it’s good to have limits and know what yours are, we should also never say never. IMHO, most things should be experienced before being crossed off your list, unless the activity is something that totally turns you off, is offensive, or you find it to be morally wrong.

Thinking about it is good, but how do you go about setting limits? I went searching the BDSM sites for some advice and here’s what I found. Sometimes you have to experiment to figure out what your limits truly are.

“Hard limits” are those activities you will not participate in under any circumstances, for whatever reason. These are non-negotiable and your partner should not nag or otherwise try to coerce you into them.

“Soft limits” are areas where there’s a bit of wiggle room. It may not be something you truly enjoy, but you don’t hate the activity either. This is an area where you make compromises with your partner and occasionally share in an activity for they enjoy. These are also things you’d consider exploring with your partner at the right time and when in the right frame of mind. Your list of soft limits should include activities you haven’t tried but have an interest or curiosity to investigate.

Just as we change over time, our tastes and limits change, so this is a subject you should revisit every once in a while. Take a long, hard look at your limits and decide if those things still matter or if there are new ones that should be added to your list.

Since we’re not sleeping together, I’ll spare you my list of sexual limits. Here are a few of my personal limits. I am not an adrenaline junkie. I’m more into the finer luxuries in life and don’t like “roughing it.”

No jumping out of perfectly good planes
No bouncing on bungee cords
No swimming in the ocean (sharks, sting rays, etc.)
No mountain climbing (hanging from a rope)
No reptiles as pets
No eating anything the words, “It tastes just like chicken,” can be said about
No camping (staying anywhere without room service or internet access)

Have you thought about your limits? If not, isn't it time you did?

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Book Talk

It's a great week for new books from Ellora's Cave Publishing! On Wednesday, the Posh corset-wearing Hussy, Sahara Kelly, has her first book in The Hussies Series releasing. Yay! To get a sneak peek at Fly By Knight, click here. Y'all are going to love this sexy, hot historical!

Releasing Wednesday:

Two if by Sea - A.D. Christopher (Paranormal / Gay)

Forgotten Kisses - Rena Marks (Vampire)

Stripped - Ruth D. Kerce (BDSM)

Fly By Knight - Sahara Kelly (Historical)

Releasing Friday:

Daffodil - Anny Cook (BDSM)

Dark Waters - Chris Quinton (Shapeshifter / Gay)

Day of the Dead - December Quinn (Vampire)

Seeing Me - Elyssa Edwards (Contemporary)

The Hussies would like to extend a warm welcome to new to Elloras author Chris Quinton. We wish you all the best, Chris!

Happy Reading!

So naughty it's scandalous!

Monday, March 24, 2008

In this lifetime? Probably not....

The subject for this week - Not in this Lifetime - can be interpreted in several different ways. When I read Ciana's post of yesterday, I smiled. Yep, I'm with my sister Hussy on a lot of these things. (I'll add "eat an oyster". Nope, not in my lifetime! Bleeeccchhhh!!!)

But then I paused. There's another way of looking at the topic...things I probably won't get to do in this lifetime, but rather wish I could. Here's a few of them:

learn to play the dulcimer
dance the tango
see the sun rise over Mount Everest
swim with dolphins
learn the names of the butterflies in my garden
identify a bird by its song
keep a gardenia alive more than two days
have dinner in Venice
pet a wombat
see Rio De Janeiro
find the perfect pair of jeans
meet George Clooney (yeah you knew he'd be in here someplace)
live in Carmel
learn to speak Italian
appreciate good wine
see the Loch Ness Monster
understand financial portfolios
paint in oils

These are all things that I'd love to be able to do, but in all likelihood, I never will. Either there's no time, no opportunity, or the subject is just too vast to be absorbed at this stage of my life. Plus one's brain tends to fill as we travel our journeys, leaving less room for knowledge of the obscure and less ability to recall it even if we know it already. (Where are my keys anyway?)

Is this a poignantly sad observation? Not at all. There's always a chance I MIGHT get to do some of these. The hope that I will stumble over George Clooney at the supermarket or suddenly find my fingers working perfectly over an antique hammered dulcimer. It's not an "I'm sorry I never..." list, but a "maybe someday - I can dream" list. It changes, things get added or left off. A lifetime list of wondrous wishes that keep me smiling as I think of the possibilities...

It never hurts to remember that once upon a time "Write a book" was on top of the list. (grin)

On those days when it seems that none of these things will ever happen, I stop by a very special website and take a few minutes to look at this video. You've probably seen it - millions upon millions have already fallen in love with it. If you haven't, you're in for a treat. It's inspiring, beautiful and truly embodies the sentiment that "hope springs eternal". And it reminds me that maybe today I'll hear a birdsong and KNOW what kind of bird is singing it - just for me!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Not in this lifetime

Well, I must admit when I checked the calendar of "themes for the week" and saw this one it gave me pause. Just what won't I do in this lifetime? Right of the top of my head the list would be:

Go to a Carrot Top Show
Marry Tom Cruise
Eat sea urchin
Wrestle an alligator
Wear Prada
Support prejudice
Be involved in a M/M menage where the guys were more into each other than me
Tryout to be a contestant on Survivor
Be the guy whose day it is to stick his leg in the hole (to catch an anaconda)
Be a man
Stop cursing at stupid drivers
Own a Iguana
Swim with sharks

I'll probably never stop believing that random acts of kindness can change the world, that we should pay it forward when someone does something nice for us, or that true love conquers all. I'll cling to the notion of happily ever after, and that to change the world we only have to look inside and make the change.

I'll not stop being a romantic at heart, or stop romanticizing cowboys or give up my love of rodeo, PBR and (big shocker here) the ballet.

And finally, not in this lifetime will anyone convince me that this was not a great film or that Mikhail Baryshnikov was not a total babe - on and off stage.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Sex Appeal and Bug Repellant

Today is my 37th birthday. Yup. And as much as gravity is starting to tickle the back of my head (and my butt, but that’s a whole other conversation), I find I look better now than I did at 20. Sure I had a nicer butt and perkier breasts, sure my waist was narrower and more defined. But I didn’t have then what I have now: an irreverent sense of humor tempered with wisdom. Okay, okay, a tiiiiiiny, tiny bit of wisdom. After all, a couple of weeks ago I busted my young son’s bed while trying to teach him the awesomeness that is the Flying Power Elbow.

So what used to look good at 20 is merely “cute” now. Then again, in twenty years, I’ll look back at my thirties and laugh at what I’m saying. But that’s how the wheel turns, right. Each rotation brings you closer to where you’re going. In my case, World Domination.

Don’t laugh. I’ll remember when I rule the galaxy. My memory is as long as my nose is big. So beware.

So to return to the topic of the week (sex appeal), I like myself better now than I ever did. Does that mean I wouldn’t kill to have a twenty year-old body? Of course it doesn’t. But presented with the choice, I’d rather have what I do now than what I had then. Does that make sense? Anyone else feels that way? Is this it, enlightenment?

This subject reminds me of what my nan used to say: “The only good thing about the good old days is that they’re over.”

So today I’m going to celebrate my 37th birthday with my menfolk, be gentle with myself, eat a bit too much, sit on my butt a bit too long and watch a movie with plenty of action and zero plot. And you know what? That’s okay. Ruling the world is hard work, yo!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Sex Appeal and the Paranormal

I mean, seriously, who was the first writer who decided to change how vamps had previously been portrayed as fanged blood sucking horrors into the modern day perception of sexy, and ah... darnit, handsome heart-stoppin' hunks of burnin' love?
I racked my brain, did some research and then I had a lightbulb moment - bowing to the mistress of vampires - ANNE RICE! Yes, she is the queen of giving the vampire sex appeal. Oh, others tried in films before her, but none did it quite like she did. Sure Bram Stoker created a most excellent one, too, but I dub Anne Rice forever!
And what makes a modern vamp sexy? Well, he or she has lived long enough to know not just how to do it, but many many ways to do it. (eg)
What about ghosts? Well, the old classic The Ghost and Mrs. Muir comes to mind, but then Patrick Swayze in GHOST wins hands down as sexy in the mist, baby! DITTO!

Other memorable paranormal misfits and star-crossed lovers have filled books and films, but the question remains- What is the mystique of a sexy paranormal lover? The obvious answer is other worldly.
The paranormal lover be it vampire, ghost, werewolf, shapshiter, or whatever -- is intriguing because of its very nature being different from ours. The possibilities of its life being forever and a human as the object of its desires captures the imagination in stark contrasts. The chemistry of opposites attracting sends tingles up and down our spines.
A being who is immortal is awe-inspiring. Our quest to conquer death plays into the fascination of these heroes and heroines with the possibility their ability to cheat death just might rub off on their human lover. Of course, it will to have the perfect HEA.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Denise Rossetti dishes it out

Strongman, Phoenix Rising book 3 releases tomorrow. Please tell us a bit about this book and the series.

Our books are our babies and we all know parents shouldn’t have a favourite child, but… There’s something special for me about STRONGMAN. I actually shouldn’t have written it. I had a couple of projects for Berkley on my plate at the time, but for whatever reason, I was absolutely compelled. Once Fort and Griff walked into my head, I couldn’t stop thinking about them. They became achingly real to me. Theirs is a real love story, very human - no magic, no feathers or flying or dragons, just a hard hurting warrior, fighting his soul-deep attraction to a circus acrobat, needing him desperately, but knowing he shouldn’t. It’s drippingly romantic, but also very, very male.

A large part of the inspiration came from Brokeback Mountain. When the credits rolled up, were you in tears? Boy, I was!

Then I got mad – two souls destined to be together, so much love, so totally wasted. All because of the society those men lived in. But what if a similar situation occurred in another place, at another time? In a world I know well, like Phoenix? My writer's brain started churning...

A hard-bitten mercenary who’s had a gutful of mud and blood and death, Fortitude McLaren joins the Ten Nations Fair as a roustabout. Tough, cold and competent, he’s shocked and angered by his hunger for Griff, a circus acrobat. Brought up in the bigoted society of the Straight Church, Fort regards manlove with casual contempt. Not for him. Never for him.

Athletic, cocky and single-minded about he wants, Griff sets about getting it. Fort fights with everything in him, but Griff affects him like no one else. It’s not just his strong, supple body. Fort is irresistibly drawn by the openhearted friendship the other man offers so freely.

Fort may have found a friend, but the cruel memories of his childhood are the greatest enemy of all. When a job for Jan the Aetherii puts Griff in danger, Fort discovers what’s really at risk — everything he is and everything he’s ever believed in. To save Griff’s life and preserve his own sanity, Fort must not only fight the battle in his soul, he must win it.

There’s a chance to win a free download on my blog, but be quick! Closes midnight tonight. Check the Contest Pages for details. All you have to do is leave a comment. Easy peasy.

Ellora's Cave tomorrow. Yeehah!!! Excited? Me? Nah, not at all. *cough, cough*

For an excerpt, visit html

As for the Phoenix Rising series, it started with GIFT OF THE GODDESS, then TAILSPIN and now STRONGMAN. You don’t have to read them in sequence, though it’s probably better that way. Each is a stand-alone.

What do you feel is the draw of m/m interaction in your stories for a genre that has a primarily female readership?

I’ve thought about this and thought about it. I still can’t quite put my finger on it. (So to speak. heh heh) I used to find men who were turned on by lesbian love scenes amusing and a bit pathetic. Now I feel ashamed for being so superior, because m/m totally pushes every button I’ve got.

All I can think is that if one beautiful man is a turn on, then two of them – interacting with intensity - is more than twice as good. That said, effeminate men don’t do it for me. They have to be real men, thinking and acting like men. I’ve read books in which one of the male lovers could be called a “a girl in a man suit”, a pseudo man, one who thinks like a woman - usually the author. I hate that with a passion.

I guess also that m/m stories allow the female reader to “switch bodies”, experiencing male emotion and sexual pleasure, both as the dominant partner and the submissive. Wouldn’t it be amazing to try it for real?

So I try incredibly hard to ensure the testosterone flows, regardless of who is doing whom. Male on male sex has a completely different emotional quality to it, quite apart from the obvious mechanics and the choreography. If I’ve done my job right, there’s a fight/sex scene in STRONGMAN that should suck the breath right out of your lungs. It certainly did mine!

So far, I haven’t written a hero who is exclusively gay, but who knows? I’m probably going to try. What I find excruciatingly erotic is the dynamic of a man who thinks he’s straight, but who meets his soul mate in the body of another man. All that shocked, terrified desire. Hoo boy!

What do you love most about being an author?

To be frank? The validation. When a reader writes to tell me my books have given her pleasure, it just makes my day. Heck, it makes my week! The two ultimate compliments are – “I re-read it.” and “You kept me up all night.” They just make me beam. I guess I really am a hussy at heart! *grin*

The other part is the connection with strangers all over the world. I just go right ahead and adopt them as my friends. I’m a highly extroverted person. (Can you tell? LOL) I thrive on company. And I purely LOVE to talk.

I’ve just kicked off a blog. It’s called Under and Over because while I’m Down Under, most of my readers are Over There. Geddit? I’m having a blast with it and I’d love to see all you Hussy gals pop in. Sally’s already dropped by. Hi, Sally! *waving*

It’s a wonder I get any writing done at all!

The money’s just jam. Yes, it’s nice, no doubt about it, but I won’t be giving up the day job any time soon. And getting paid is just another form of validation anyhow.

Tell us something quirky or interesting about yourself we wouldn’t otherwise know.

Hmm, the Hussies already know I love tarty red stilettos – my hussy heels!

Let’s see, I have a birthmark on my shoulder blade. It looks a bit like a cross-eyed butterfly. When I was teaching, years ago, I wore a summer dress with a low-cut back one day and the kids asked me about it. I told them I was a lost Ruritanian Princess and it was the Royal Birthmark. One dear little soul believed me for a whole three minutes.

What is the writing process like for you? Do you plot out every detail ahead of time or write more spontaneously? Do you need quiet or music playing in the background?

I’m what other writers call a “pantser”. For me, writing is a completely organic, instinctive process. I don't plan much, or write character interviews or plot outlines and I purely loathe synopses. That sort of stuff kills it for me. I love the thrill of watching the story unfold under my fingers. I'll write until I hit the edge of the "mist" and then I...wait...and wait... Eventually, the fog clears and I can "see" what happens next. I do always know how it begins and what happens in the end. It’s the bit in between that’s um, interesting…

Characters take up residence in my head without so much as a by your leave, and talk and fight and all sorts of wicked things. *wg* It happens hen I’m driving, or in the shower, or dropping off to sleep or out walking with My Beloved and the dog. Every now and then, he’ll grin and ask, “Where are you now?” And I go, “Huh?” Because I sure ain’t in Kansas, Dorothy. It’s like having a movie screening just behind your eyes and it’s good because now I’m never bored. Have to wait at the doctor’s? In an endless staff meeting? No problem. *smile*

Funnily enough, despite the home movies in the cranium, I'm a very slow, very deliberate writer. I don't often get carried away and have words simply flow out of my fingers. I have to dig for every single one, which means I need to concentrate. I have a timer on the computer and I turn it for 45 minutes. When it goes off, I'm allowed to check my email. (Did I say I need a 12 step program?)

The music depends on the mood required. I have a number of playlists - an upbeat, rock ‘n’ country one for when I need energy, a lush operatic one for over-the-top emotion, a Celtic or a baroque, liturgical one for soothing background. I’m currently obsessed with Rufus Wainwright. And I’ve always been obsessed by Leonard Cohen.

I also burn essential oils, soothing florals like lavender or bergamot or rose with a few drops of something sharp like lemongrass, to stimulate creativity. That's the theory, anyway. I don't like heavy, musky scents. And I drink a lot of tea. No coffee.

Where do you see yourself as an author in the future? Is there a specific direction you would like your writing to go?

I guess I’m headed for New York and a print career. Well, I'm hoping so. I have a four book contract with Berkley for THE FOUR-SIDED PENTACLE series. The first, THE FLAME AND THE SHADOW, will be released as a Berkley Ace trade paperback on 4th November 2008. Ace is Berkley’s fantasy line. They publish Charlaine Harris – OMG, gulp! It’s interesting that they see my work as cross-genre, strong enough as a fantasy to be sold to that market, erotic and romantic enough for Berkley Heat or Sensation, because it will also come out later as a mass market in one of those lines.

The cover of THE FLAME AND THE SHADOW is simply beyond gorgeous. The artist sent me a 24 x 18 print and I cried when I saw it, it’s that beautiful. Unfortunately, I don’t have permission to show it to you just yet, dammit. Keep visiting my website and my blog, or join my newsletter.

I also have a story appearing in the Berkley Heat anthology, UNLACED (2nd December 2008), together with authors Jasmine Haynes, Jaci Burton and Joey W. Hill. Pretty damn good company, isn’t it? I’m stoked! I’m thinking of changing my name to Jenise to go with the flow.

All that said, I love the freedom of writing for Ellora's Cave. Electronic publishers generally allow their authors to push the envelope further than the big print houses and I’m rather fond of m/m. *grin* After all, that's how Ellora's Cave got off the ground - by offering readers the hotter romances they couldn't find in a bookstore. And Liseriel the Gray and her master-thief lover are already talking in my head.

I see myself as continuing to write cross-genre. My books are essentially love stories – with heaps of hot sex. But I also have to have things happening - I like action, and lots of it. Heart-stopping adventure, angst and derring-do, so that characters are tested and they grow and change. I like trying out ideas, being different. Fantasy is my first love, though I do also enjoy paranormal. My Kaminski Family stories are urban paranormals. (ELLORA’S CAVEMEN: SEASONS OF SEDUCTION 1 and A RED HOT NEW YEAR) I have more story ideas for the Kaminskis.

I like romantic comedy too, and sometimes I think I’m actually funny, but so far I’ve saved the humour for the Kaminskis and my free stories – the current one, RACKETY KATE AND THE PIRATES, and THE AMOROUS ADVENTURES OF ALICE, both available on my website and in my newsletter. They’re my light relief.

Then there’s contemporary romantic suspense. Could be fun. It probably sounds really dumb, but one of my problems is that I’ve never been to the US (I’m an Aussie, if you hadn’t realized) and I’m too lazy to do the proper research on settings. But this year, My Beloved and I will be in California for RWA Nationals and then Vancouver and Alaska. So maybe, one day…

Please list any links to your website, reader groups, blogs, email addy, etc.

Hey, my pleasure!
Thanks for letting me hang out with you, Hussy Gals. Once a Hussy, always a Hussy!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Book Talk

This is a special week for new books from Ellora's Cave Publishing. Thursday, March 20th is the Vernal Equinox aka the first day of spring. There are only two days a year when day and night are equal in length and Thursday is one of them. It's also the day when the first Cavemen anthology 0f 2008 releases, Jewels of the Nile I. Yay!

The great thing about the Cavemen anthologies is each book has six hot erotic romance stories in a variety of sub-genre and allows the reader to sample the writing of some authors you may not have read before, along with some favorites. And the Cavemen anthologies are available in both e-book and print on release day.

Releasing Wednesday:

Aquamarine: Cadari Lover - Cara Carnes (Futuristic)

Firefly Promise - Nikki Soarde (Romantic Suspense)

Fit to Be Tied - Myla Jackson (Western)

Seducing the Saint - Melissa Schroeder (Futuristic)

Releasing Thursday:

Ellora's Cavemen: Jewels of the Nile I - Katie Blu, Delilah Devlin, Kate Hill, B.J. McCall, Cynthia Rayne, Jenna Reynolds

(Whooo...that cover is smokin' hot!)

Releasing Friday:

Aquamarine: Aquamarine Prince - Joanna Wylde (Paranormal)

Strongman - Denise Rossetti (Fantasy / Gay)

Marlow's Curse - Amarinda Jones (Vampire)

All the Trees in Pearl - Emily Ryan-Davis (Historical Western)

We have quite a few newbies this week. The Hussies would like to extend a warm welcome to new to Ellora's authors Cara Carnes, Melissa Schroeder, Katie Blu, Jenna Reynolds, and Emily Ryan-Davis. We wish you all the best.

Happy reading!

So Naughty it's Scandalous!

P.S. Gettin' Naughty is taking a hiatus this week, and the fabulous Denise Rossetti will be blogging on Thursday. Make sure to stop by and and check out her post!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The More The Merrier!

The More the Merrier!
By N.J. Walters

Ménage a trois…how exactly does it work?

Hello! Remember me?

I think I lost you all for a moment as your mind wandered off, no doubt engrossed in the possibilities. All that naked flesh coming together, hard chests, broad shoulders, sculpted muscles, lips touching, hands stroking, limbs entwining, soft moans…

Ahem! Sorry about that. Where was I?

What I really meant was how does an author make us suspend disbelief enough to make a ménage a trois acceptable, even believable to the reader, who might otherwise have a hard time with the concept of a threesome?

The author can do this in various ways depending on if the book is an erotic romance or a straight work of erotic fiction. In erotic fiction the act itself is the goal, in an erotic romance the ménage a trois must be an integral part of the plot, ultimately leading to a happily-ever-after. That takes some work. The last thing you want is for one character to feel shut out—hurt by the lack of emotional or physical connection with the other two in the ménage.

I’ve written a few ménage a trois books. The best-known ones are probably the books in my Tapestries series. The basis of the series is a magical tapestry, which takes women from different places and times and whisks them to Javara, a world that resembles Medieval Earth. In Javara women are scarce and brothers must compete sexually for the honor of claiming the woman as wife. Only one man can marry the woman and all children from the union are his, but he must share his wife one night a week with his brother(s).

When the heroine of Christina’s Tapestry, Christina Beaumont, finds herself in this strange world, she is overwhelmed by the ardent attention of the two brothers, Jarek and Marc, as they each seduce her. What would be unthinkable in her world is, the norm in theirs. The warriors hold Christina in high regard and treat her with honor at all times. The longer she is there, the more normal the situation becomes to her.

Zarina is a warrior from a desert tribe in my fantasy/ménage a trois Three Swords, One Heart. She is a strong woman and a capable one, who is exiled from her tribe when her father dies. Alone, she battles to survive in a brutal world. Malik and Kalis, the two heroes, believe that she is the warrior woman who can break the curse that has plagued their family for generations. To do so, they both need to bond with her and gain her love. Zarina needs to be strong enough to stand side-by-side with these warriors if they are to have a chance at a life together, but her insecurities might be their downfall.

My latest ménage a trois is Amethyst Moon. Archaeologist, Olivia Fifield, finds herself transported to the world of T’ar Tal after she makes an exciting discovery in an Egyptian mastaba. The future of this world is uncertain, but Olivia and her amethyst bracelets are the key that might save them all.

In each case, I’ve taken the heroine outside the norm, to another world where the rules of normal society no longer apply. That is probably the easiest way to handle the societal problems that being part of a ménage might present. We may live in modern times, but this is not the kind of relationship that would be readily acceptable by the bulk of the population.

But some authors do set their ménage a trois books in contemporary times. This takes a lot of skill, especially if there is to be a satisfying happily-ever-after at the end. Many writers will use brothers or best friends as the basis for the ménage. In the end, the reader has to accept that the unusual arrangement works for this group.

As a writer, it’s a challenge to pen a ménage a trois, whether you do the more conventional two males and one female, the less common two females and one male, or even take it one step further with four or more participants. Not only is it much tougher to keep track of all those body parts, it’s a challenge to make the emotional connection between all the parties involved deep, meaningful and very real. Because, in the end, that is what any good relationship is all about. Without that, no book will satisfy, but if it’s done right, the results can be a highly erotic read that will make your pulse pound, your body ache, and your heart soar.

Emotional~Sensual~Satisfying Reads! (newsletter group)
The Seduction of Shamus O’Rourke—Samhain Publishing
Amethyst Moon—Ellora’s Cave

Monday, March 17, 2008

Bug Appeal and Sex Repellant

We all try to get it right. The whole exercise - diet - attitude - personality thing. I'm right on board with all of these.

I exercise. I get out of bed in the mornings, which counts as a weight bearing exercise. I cut my own toenails, which doubles as yoga.

Diet? Definitely. Chocolate is a food group, I like yogurt and Fig Newtons aren't really cookies. Yep, I'm on board with the diet thing.

Attitude? I'm a very positive person. I'm positive my body will collapse if it's not clasped in the embrace of something snug and engineered by Ph.D.'s specializing in structural physics.

Personality? Hmm. That's harder to assess, but overall nobody's actually taken a shot at me yet. Which augurs well for a check mark in the plus column.

Problem is? I'm not sure any of us are totally capable of judging our own sex appeal. Suppose the dudes I meet don't like Fig Newtons. Are they going to be repelled by the package and a half I have in my handbag? Maybe Mr. Wonderful wants to take me out for a three mile run. (I'll go along, but in the pace car. I will carry water in case he needs it, of course.)

Looking in the mirror isn't the best way to judge our personalities or ourselves, I'm thinking. All we see is a woman who doesn't meet the current requirements for "Hubba Hubba" - i.e. a woman with more than a twenty two inch waist and less than three miles of legs. A woman for whom a thong represents the human equivalent of a cheese slicer and is about as comfortable. Looking in the mirror can be pretty damn depressing at times, especially on a Monday morning when everything seems to have sagged a helluva lot more than it did on Friday.

Yep, Mondays are days when we know the best we can hope for is to attract a few bugs. It's not the most sexually appealing moment in our week.

My advice? Hide the mirrors on Sunday nights. Then greet the world on Monday with a smile, regardless of the fact that the fairies have turned your hair into Medusa-like snakes and somebody stole your thighs and replaced them with cottage cheese. Don't use the mirror to evaluate your sex appeal, use the warmth of the smiles on your friends' faces. Because no matter how slender your waist, how perky your boobs or how long your legs, if there isn't a smile topping it all, you won't get a smile back.

To me (the one with no waist to speak of and a pack of Fig Newtons) a few bugs are bound to crop up now and again. I'll swat 'em. I'll shrug at my appallingly bad habits. I'll bypass the mirrors and drag out my comfortable sweatpants instead of those snug jeans. Then I'll head out to run my errands - and I'll accessorize with the sexiest thing I have - a smile.

And you know what? It works.

Just to be on the safe side, if you're having difficulty with finding that smile this morning, here's a wee reminder. Even the most professional of models and the most carefully planned fashion shows can go wrong. And by God it's bloody hysterical when they do!!!! Watch this video and go smile today!!!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sex Appeal and Bug Repellant ... what we do to look good

When it comes to trying to look good, we women have tried so many things that to list them would be a monumental task. We've wrapped, zapped, taped, plastered, painted, dyed, bleached, shaved, waxed, pinned, powered, squeezed, bound, plucked, heated, frozen, sweated, pushed, pulled, covered, concealed, enhanced, rearranged, restructured and resurfaced ourselves for centuries.

And when we run out of new ideas - like attaching electrodes to our face and zapping ourselves with electric current to get a firm youthful appearance, we fall back on ancient remedies - like nightingale poop facials or bull semen hair treatments.

We'll do anything and try anything to stay younger looking and more attractive. We spend billions of dollars a year on that quest. And where does it get us in the end? If we're lucky, older. Younger? I think not.

However, as a member of the "not a young chickadee" segment of the population, I can testify that there are things we can do that help us feel better about ourselves and look better when we do dare to take a look in that mirror. And for a lot of us, it's things that make us groan.

1. Exercise. Yes. Like it or not, exercise helps keep us looking better. Let's face it, toned muscles look a hell of a lot better than un-toned. Exercise helps you maintain better posture, stronger bones, more mobility and flexibility and strength. And practiced regularly will get you into those clinging knits with smoother lines than any body shaper undergarment. Plus, it is beneficial to your mental health. It helps reduce or manage stress and makes you feel more positive about yourself. And the better you feel about you, the more you'll project an air of self-confidence that equates in the male mind as sex appeal.

2. Proper diet: Okay, no one likes to starve and I'm not advocating that. But a good balanced diet - a healthy eating lifestyle - can help you not only feel better, but look better because you're putting the right nutrients into your system to support good skin and hair.

3. Attitude: If you think attitude isn't half the battle then think again. I've known a lot of women over the years who had sex appeal out the wazoo. And not because they were drop dead gorgeous. But they had an attitude that said "yeah, I AM that good" that drew men like a bear to honey.

4. Personality: Don't groan. We all know that old cliche - "she's got a GREAT personality" is the way we've all billed our girlfriends to potential dates. But personality counts. Some of the sexiest men I know are not classically handsome. But their personalities make them sizzling hot. The same is true for women. A woman who loves life, smiles likes it's her religion and has a positive, upbeat outlook will get a lot more than a drop-dead beautiful woman who bitches, moans and whines about life.

I like the poem the legendary beauty, Audrey Hepburn read to her children, which was written by the humorist Sam Levenson

For attractive lips,
Speak words of kindness.
For lovely eyes,
Seek out the good in people.
For a slim figure,
Share your food with the hungry.
For beautiful hair,
Let a child run his fingers through it once a day.
For poise,
Walk with the knowledge you’ll never walk alone.
People, even more than things, have to be restored,
renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed.
Never throw out anybody.
Remember: if you ever need a helping hand,
you’ll find One at the end of your arm.
As you grow older you will discover that you have two hands.
One for helping yourself, the other for helping others.
The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.
The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole, but the true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives and the passion that she shows.
The beauty of a woman grows with the passing years.

And I love what she said in 1992 when she was asked if she had any personal beauty secrets besides Levinson's philosophical tips: "If I had them," she said, "I'd make a fortune. But I know what helps — health, lots of sleep, lots of fresh air, and a lot of help from Estee Lauder."

This is Ciana, for the Hussies, wishing you a beautiful day. And in the words of Helen Keller: The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen, nor touched ... but are felt in the heart.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Breaking up is hard to do ... unless...

Breaking Up
It’s never easy. Unless you were married to (or dated) an asshole, in which case it *is* eminently easy to kick his sorry ass out the door, and yes, take your goddamn baseball cards collection with you!

But if you had something in common with that person, then chances are, calling it quits and moving on can sometimes be a sad day. But fear not, The Hussies are here! We’ve come up with fun and inventive ways to lose a guy. 50 ways, to be exact. You’ve read them over the week and now scroll through the last ones, cooked up by yours truly. Laugh, cringe, or roll your eyes.

*cue drum roll*

Throw some china, Anna
Push him into a well, Michelle
Bounce the jerk, Dirk (hey, equal opportunity!)
Bust his Oldsmobile, Cheryl
Run your key along his Ferrari, Sophie
Go after his finances, Frances
Sue, Sue
Blow stuff up, Penelope (okay, so this one doesn’t rhyme. Sue me.)

Now take a look at this hilarious break up commercial from Coke and try to remember when 1 million dollars meant a lot of cash. Yeah, fuzzy, eh?

Friday, March 14, 2008

How do you leave an immortal?

I'm not so sure there are 50 ways to live a vampire or a werewolf. How do you shake off a ghost short of becoming one? It could take eternity. Hmm.

To leave a vampire would probably not be a pleasant process. And then there are gargoyles and shapeshifters.

Typically these beings mate, for well, forever, so you better be darn sure before you say I do to the sexy vamp. I just don't think they'd be too keen on letting you go, Jo, but just in case you can pull it off and actually leave that paranormal lover, here are my best shots on how to do it.
  1. Give him a bite in the neck, Beck

  2. Show him the moon, June

  3. Give him a scream, Maureen

  4. Just a little cross in the face, Grace

  5. Dash of holy water in the eye, Kia

  6. Squeeze garlic in his goatee, Dee

  7. Feed him a doggie biscuit made of wolfbane, Jane

  8. Turn him to stone, Joan

  9. Shapeshift out the door, Cora

  10. Give him a ghost of a chance, Nance

  11. Haunt him with a night of fright, Brite

  12. Give him a sunlight hit, Kit

  13. Switch the stock of blood, Ms Judd

  14. Stake him in the heart, Mart

  15. Buy him a cross for his birthday, Kay

  16. Hold a séance for guidance, Candace

  17. Conduct a reading of tarot, Jo

  18. Find him a werewolf mate, Fate

  19. Put him under a spell, Nell

  20. Clip his wings, Jean

  21. Saw off his horn, Lauren

  22. Send him back to hell, Bel
  23. Exorcise him, Kim

  24. Hide his coffin for a thrill, Jill

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Gettin' Naughty - Kickin' His Sorry Butt To The Curb

I’m sure there are a lot more than 50 ways to leave your lover. I think it all depends on when is the best time and why. No matter when, how or why…

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

It’s important to know when it’s over and get out! We’ve all heard stories of people who stay in dead end or abusive relationships for a variety of reasons. Some don’t want to be alone, while others are dependent on the person and lack the means to leave. Then there are those who would rather stay in a known situation than face change.

I’m probably going to get hate mail for this one, but here goes…

I’m sure you’ve all heard of the “Man Rules” or code of conduct for men. One of the rules is don’t be left, be the one to call it quits. This seems to be a big self-esteem issue for men—it’s okay if he can tell the guys he was the dumper and not the dumpee. No one wants to be discarded, but men seem to have more problems with this than women. We cry, pig out on sweets, bitch to friends and move on.

Men seem to stew over being left, since it is another man rule not to discuss your feelings, and start longing for what they can’t have. Heck, women have known for centuries one of the ways to get a man is to be unattainable. It brings out a Neanderthal response in the male, a primitive need to conquer and possess. A need to tackle a challenge.

Have you ever noticed that you get more attention when you are in a relationship than when you’re not?

Here are some facts that have been proven true in history and human psychology

1. People want what they can't have!
2. People desire what is scarce.
3. Most of us love a challenge.
4. You don't know what you've got until it is gone.
5. You want someone who is desirable to others.
6. If you are with someone, you are perceived as more attractive.
7. When in a relationship you are more confident and less desperate.

In the immortal words of the Stones…

You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes well you just might find
You get what you need, oh baby, yeah, oh

How you end it depends greatly on your reasons for doing so. Don’t love him anymore or found someone else then let him down easy. If he’s been abusive and treated you badly, run for the hills and leave no forwarding address. If he’s cheated, you’re going to want to follow Carrie Underwood’s example. If you do, don’t get caught. The whole carving the name thing is a statement of guilt and not a good idea.

There are many other ways to get back at him discretely, oh I don’t know, let’s say by putting a few metal marbles in the gas tank. He’s gonna remember you every time he turns a corner. You could hit him hard by having his utilities turned off or even… Uh, I think I’ll stop before someone takes this as a confession and I get myself in trouble, but you get the idea. *g*

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Book Talk

Sorry, I know I'm late. Didn't even realize it's wednesday already. It has been one of those weeks. Got a new laptop, been fighting to get it set up (technology and I don't get along well) and I'm suffering from insomnia. Ugh!

Without any further delays, here are all the fabulous books releasing from Ellora's Cave Publishing this week.

Releasing Wednesday:

What The Cat Dragged In, Kate Steele

Man Trouble, C.S. Chatterly

Fire Angel, Beth Kery

Seducing The Siren, M.A. Ellis

Releasing Friday:

Touch Me, Cindy Spencer Pape

Healer's Price, Simone Bern

Charming The Masters, Katherine Kingston

Challenge Protocol, Dawn Ryder

The Hussies would like to extend a warm welcome to new to Ellora's author Simone Bern! We wish you all the best on this incredible ride.

Have a great week everyone and happy reading!

So Naughty it's Scandalous!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Listen and you will hear them too...

When I tell people I hear voices I usually get strange looks, then I see their hands reaching for their phones to call the guys in little white coats for me. When I clarify and tell them that I write theses voices onto the page of a book they still give me strange looks but they are mixed with awe.

Inevitably they ask the question. “You’re a writer?”When I say yes, I get lots of questions that follow. How do you write a story? I could never do that. How do you come up with ideas?

The variety of question can all be answered with one simple word. Don’t. Yeah confused you huh. Well let us get more complex. I don’t write the story. I don’t come up with the idea and I don’t to all the questions you may come up with.

I don’t because the characters talk to me and tell me how their story should be told. They have life, emotions and are real. If they aren’t real to me then how can I make it real to you the reader? We’ll I can’t so they are real. They bring me all they are and strip their lives for me to see to put on the page. Yeah they get all naked emotionally, physically and mentally. They walk in front of me, bring me into their lives, dreams and hopes so I can see it all and revel their stories to you.

The power of words are only as good as the reality behind it.

Whether in contemporary, paranormal, sci-fi, time travel or any other genre’s once a character is alive in any writer’s mind it will show through on the pages of their books. I have read many author’s who bring characters to life in my mind with their writing. I go to sleep after reading the book and see the characters in my mind afterwards. They make me wonder what the character is doing.

I love books that follow the same hero or heroine because I get to revisit and see more of the character’s life. I love books that have characters that live with me long after I read the last page.

So yeah I am an author who hears voices of my character and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Although I learned my lesson and am quicker at telling people I hear voices that I am an author. Sigh. Long story. LOL. I’m an author whose characters talk to me and breathe life into my stories

My question to you. What character in a book you have read still speaks with you long after you have read the last page? Be sure and give us the title, author and the reason why.

Take a journey with me, Mikayla (my opinionated muse) and the many characters we’ve brought to life.

Thanks for letting me bring you into my world.