Friday, June 29, 2012

Heading into July

Swinging into the final countdown for Biting Oz's release! I'm going to be putting a lot of time into promo (and frankly, that makes my head spin) so my response time may lag.

I'm at Magical Musings with a giveaway through Saturday. Black Diamond Jinn is at DRB's 1st Chapter today.

I took a poll here earlier this year. Majority vote was to continue to write the new stuff, so I'm concentrating my time on Alphas Don't Wear Bows and Beauty Bites (Biting Love Book 6). But unpublished story Hot Sand and Chips came in a close second. I'm going to be revising little chunks in my spare time--and putting it up on my blog for free! More info to come.

Starting July 1, for the month of July, Black Diamond Jinn will be part of the Smashwords Summer/Winter promo!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer Writing Update


Black Diamond Jinn is out in paperback! Includes a preview of Biting Oz. I navigated the waters of CreateSpace and I have to say it was as much fun as publishing an indie ebook, although a bit harder. There are trim sizes and a spine to consider as well as back copy. Also, the font doesn't automatically adjust. I took the default, Garamond 11, but it's a bit light for older eyes. Next time I'll pick something else. But the finished product is amazing! As good as any trade paperback.

Thursday I'll be at the awesome Magical Musings. Come visit for a peek at Biting Oz and a giveaway.
Friday the first chapter of Biting Oz will be featured at DRB Presents First Chapters

I'm working steadily on edits for Alphas Don't Wear Bows, and hope to finish in the next month. July I'll be planning Biting Oz's release tour--if you'd like me to come visit your blog, just let me know!

July is also when I"m planning to release Oz Bites on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Will include a preview of Biting Oz.

July 24-August 14 is the Red Hot Summer Releases! New releases from four Wisconsin authors--Carrie Lofty (writing with Lorelie Brown as Katie Porter), Amy Sandas, Renee Wildes, and me. Party August 6 at the Samhain Cafe with giveaways, chat, and more!

After that it's back to Beauty Bites, BL6. Oh, and of course August 14 is Biting Oz's release date :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Double giveaway, Biting Oz sneak peek, and guest post!

I visit the wonderful Tracy's Place as part of  the Digital First Read-a-Thon! Comment to enter--chance to win Biting Me Softly or The Bite of Silence in ebook!

3T Writing Tidbit

I've been published since 2009 but I've been writing for a lot longer. Over the years I've accumulated various items of wisdom from all over. Third Tuesday Writing Tidbit will showcase these items one at a time in no particular order.


Tie important symbols together/reuse an important symbol across the arc of the book/use a significant object to express the heroine's essence.

Example: I'll be using Nixie's guitar Oscar from Biting Nixie. Contains Spoilers!!

Oscar was broken by Nixie's sister=lost love.
Oscar saves Nixie from a vampire.
Oscar repaired is Nixie's equivalent of an engagement ring.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Guest Author Suz deMello Temptation in Tartan


Today I'm welcoming multi-talented Suz deMello to my blog! Enjoy the following from her new release, Temptation in Tartan!
She had to marry a monster…
Rumors had followed the chieftains of Clan Kilborn for centuries. Said to be descended from the Viking Berserkers, they were ferocious in battle, known for tearing off the heads of their enemies and drinking their blood.

But English noblewoman Lydia Swann Williston would marry Kieran, Laird Kilborn, to bring peace to the Kilborn lands after the horror of Culloden and the brutal pacification. A widow, she also brought needed wealth to Clan Kilborn. For her part, eighteen-year-old Lydia wanted children. With her husband killed at Culloden, she would make a new life in the Highlands.

The old chieftain of Clan Kilborn also died in battle, and she hoped that the new young Laird would lack his ancestors' ferocity.

She was wrong.
Excerpt, Chapter One

 “The Kilborns are great warriors, rumored to be descended from Viking berserkers.” Colonel Swann paced the drawing room, his boots soundless on the thick rugs.
Lydia’s belly clenched and she drew a frightened breath. “Berserkers! The savages who raided our shores, murdering monks and, er…attacking women?”
The colonel stared at her as though a potted plant had decided to speak. Not surprising, since Lydia had always been known in their family as the quiet one.
“The same,” he said. “And the Kilborn clansmen have intermarried for generations. Animals.” He tugged at his tight cravat. Out of uniform, dressed as a town gentleman, Lydia thought her cousin lost some of his edge. Scowling, he continued, “By this marriage we seek to dilute the Kilborn blood and weaken the line.”
“Weaken the line, sir?” Lydia’s mother, Henrietta, raised a brow. “Do you suggest that my daughter’s lineage is flawed? Ours is one of the noblest families in the kingdom.”
“True,” he said. “By adding Lady Lydia’s noble blood to the Kilborn line, we will civilize the wild Highlanders.”
Lydia tried to look civilized and noble, but couldn’t stop twisting the handkerchief in her lap. She rubbed its black edging, a reminder of her status as a widow. “You want me to marry an animal. A barely civilized wild man.”
“The Crown would take your selflessness as a particular favor,” her cousin said.
She lifted her brows. “Indeed.” As a general’s daughter, duty pulled at her blood.
“‘Tis a perfect solution. ‘Tis easier to pacify by marriage than by the sword. All parties will benefit.” His glance strayed to the bodice of Lydia’s gown. In half-mourning, she wore gray muslin trimmed with black piping. “You must desire children. The Highlander is doubtless, uh, lusty.”
She pursed her lips. She’d loved William, but hadn’t grasped why others made such a fuss about marital relations. But she did want children and had planned to have several. “You want me to marry a warrior who may have killed my husband at Culloden Moor,” she said. “I can’t do that.”
Colonel Swann remained silent but looked uneasy as Lydia’s mother crossed the room. “Your late husband,” Henrietta said and sat on an ottoman next to Lydia.
When her mother took Lydia’s hand, she couldn’t control the trembling. At eighteen, she knew she simply wasn’t brave.
Unlike her mother, who now peered into Lydia’s eyes. “Child, what else will you do? Of course, as a widow, you can refuse. But another marriage may make you happy.”
“Do I have to marry a wild Scotsman? Leave my country and everything I know?”
“Of course not. But you are already acquainted with all the other eligible males of our class, and chose William over all.”
“That’s so.” Lydia remembered her days of attending parties and balls in London a scant three years ago. She sighed.
“You’ll bring great wealth,” the colonel said. “And by your marriage, Kilborn will be spared the pacification efforts that other clans and chieftains suffer. You’ll be valued and honored.”
“I have my portion and William’s, but I am not particularly wealthy,” Lydia said.
“Not by London standards, but for an impoverished Highland chieftain, you are a rich prize.”
“Lovely.” Lydia stood and walked to the window, her voluminous skirts rustling.
Below in the garden, she could see her brother playing with one of his sons. She watched George pick up Andrew, toss the giggling child into the air and catch him before they collapsed in a laughing heap together on the sunlit lawn.
Her heart tripped. She might never see George and Andrew again. But she might become that happy parent, could have babies of her own to enjoy.
She turned to face her mother. “I’ll do it.”

Kieran, Laird Kilborn, strode along the upper wall-walk of his castle, his mood as dark as the midnight sky above. Below him, the sea crashed with the threat of a storm. His retainers scattered at the sight of their new laird’s frown, for Kieran was known to show his temper. His own father had borne a scar on his forehead from a tankard a young Kieran had thrown when the princeling had been but four.
Kieran pinched the bridge of his nose, staring out over Clan Kilborn’s crofts and lands, lit only by moonlight. His lands, now, following the deaths of his father and older brother at Culloden. An unexpected burden—his lands and his responsibility.
“Ye could look forever, but nothing will change.” Euan’s soft voice intruded upon Kieran’s dangerous mood. “That is, nothing will change unless ye marry the Sassenach lassie.”
Kieran turned, remembering to soften his frown. No one else would dare to disturb his thoughts, but Euan was different. The castle’s steward, he’d been old when Kier was born.
“Aye, the reprisals are cruel.” Kieran rubbed his hand over the sturdy stone battlement.
“They will only get worse. The Sassenachs are determined to break all of the Highlands and to destroy the clans who supported the bonny prince. ‘Tis a stroke of luck that the Swan wants you to wed the lassie.”
“Why, though? What’s the benefit to the Sassenach colonel?”
The smaller man shrugged. “We are a remote holding. ‘Tis easier to pacify us by marriage than by war, and far less costly.”
“I’ll never give up tartan or sword.” A thin, chilly breeze lifted Kieran’s dark hair off his shoulders. He drew his plaid, vividly patterned in red, yellow and two shades of blue, more tightly around him.
“Wed the Swan’s cousin and ye willnae have to.”
“I had not thought to wed yet, with everything so…unsettled.”
“Truly? There’s a certain lassie who’s set her cap for ye.”
“Grizel?”
“Er, I was thinking of Moira.”
“Oh, that one.” Kieran dismissed Moira with a wave of his hand. “She must know that Culloden changed everything, including her expectations.”
“Ye must secure the succession.” Euan’s dark, haunted eyes searched Kieran’s face. “I promised your father that I would see to it.”
“And would he have wanted me to marry outside our blood?” Kieran asked. His grand-uncle Euan knew more of the secrets of his family than did Kieran himself.
“Possibly not.” Euan looked troubled. “But marriage to the Sassenach lady will provide money, safety and heirs.”
“And what shall I do when the dark thirst takes me? Succor myself at my lady’s throat?”
“There are other ways.” Euan’s eyes were hooded and unreadable in the moonlight. “Other women—”
“No! ‘Tis like unfaithfulness. What of my honor?”
“There is no honor when the dark curse seizes us.”
“I must find a way, for the clan.”
“Then ye’ll marry the Sassenach wench?”
“‘Tisn’t so simple. The laird’s consort isnae merely a juicy quim or a fertile ewe. She must be more.”
Euan shrugged. “She’s a widow, managed her own household.”
“Hmm.” Kieran took a deep breath of the midnight air, scented with the tang of the nearby sea and the crofters’ hay. “Aye then, I’ll do it.”


Like what you read?

Best-selling, award-winning author Sue Swift, a.k.a Suz deMello, has written over fifteen novels, plus several short stories and non-fiction articles. She writes in numerous genres including romance, mystery, paranormal, historical, contemporary comedy and erotica. She’s a freelance editor who’s worked for Total-E-Bound, Ai Press, Liquid Silver Books and Etopia Press. She also takes on private clients.

Her books have been favorably reviewed in PW, Kirkus and Booklist, attained the finals of the RITA and reached the top ten on a bestseller list.

A former trial attorney, she resides in northern California. Her passion is world travel, and she’s left the US over a dozen times, including stints working overseas for many months. Right now, she's working on her next manuscript and planning her next trip.

Her blog is at http://www.fearlessfastpacedfiction.com. Find her reading picks @ReadThis4fun on Twitter, and befriend her on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/SueSwift).



Tuesday, June 5, 2012

June 1T Giveaway!

Welcome to the First Tuesday giveaway! Each first Tuesday of the month I'm offering a contest where I choose one winner (who hasn't won in the past twelve months) by random number from all comments on that post. The winner will receive his or her choice of one Biting Love ebook *or* a $5 gift certificate from Amazon or Samhain!

If you're a 18+ and an adult, and if you consent to having your name listed on the rotating 12-month winner list, just comment on this post to enter! Void where prohibited. Please note, the Biting Love books contain explicit sex and violence. If you win please consider that when making your prize selection. Winner chosen at the end of the month and posted as part of next month's contest.

And May's winner is--Paws! Congratulations, Paws! Please email me at mary@maryhughesbooks.com to claim your prize.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Sunday, June 3, 2012

OMG, Logan won the Write Touch Readers' Award!!

Just got back from the Write Touch "Romancing the North Woods" conference. Awesomeness all around, thanks to conference coordinator Amy Bird, headliners Elizabeth Hoyt and Jade Lee, and all the many volunteers. Fellow Samhain authors Renee Wildes and Liz Kreger were there and I had a great time with everyone, from first time authors to multipublished. And I learned so much my head exploded. Okay, maybe not :) But it was a wonderful time! I'll have more pictures later in the week, and will post some on Facebook as well.

My huge news is--Biting Me Softly won the 2012 Write Touch Readers' Award for Paranormal! I'm still bowled over by it. This is the immensely cool plaque they gave me, along with a beautiful pink rose. I'm exceedingly honored by this award, my very first!

Thanks and kudos go to Softly's editor Deborah Nemeth and cover artist Natalie Winters for this award!