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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

WWW Wednesday

Here are my last weeks and my ratings of them (if I'm done with it)

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions… (leave a link to your blog)

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

I a currently reading: Jeff Bennington The Indie Guide to the Universe 5/5 stars
I just finished reading: Sheryl Steines The Day of First Sun 5/5 stars
Next I will be reading: Kevin Domenic Key To The Stars Still haven't read

This week:

1. I am currently reading: Kevin Demenic Key To The Stars
2. I just finished reading: Twin Tied by Lanie Jordan (beta)(YA)
3. I will be reading: Leah Cypress Changeling (YA)

You can find what I'm reading and will be reading here:

The Changelings and Other Stories on Amazon -- A Free Read by Random House Author Leah Cypress

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sample Sunday


Here's my Sample Sunday. This is from The Storm Within. It's available on Amazon in the widget above this post. There is a new edition with a bonus second story inside. Read the first chapter below. Also check the post below this one for a contest I'm running to celebrate LINKED hitting a Top 100 list on Amazon.

Linked and The Storm Within are both on sale this week for 99cents.


She was going to die. Kari Davis knew it as well as she knew her name.

Less than an hour ago, she’d been terrified that she would be killed—now, it appeared Mother Nature was calling dibs. What did it matter? Dead was dead. At least the storm wouldn’t go out if its way to make sure her death was as painful as possible.

A light snow had turned into a whiteout. Visibility was nearly non-existent. She couldn’t tell for sure that she was even on the road. Her hands gripped the steering wheel so tightly that her knuckles were cramping.

“Calm down,” she muttered. The last twenty-four hours had been a living nightmare—she hadn’t thought things could get any worse, but of course, they had. The snow had begun slowly, and then built gradually. The radio was warning motorists to stay off the roads.
If only she could. Pulling over wasn’t an option. Not if she wanted to live. She tried to relax her death grip on the steering wheel.

Before she could take her next breath, the car started careening out of control. Immediately she took her foot off the gas pedal, instinctively remembering her driver’s education course from years before.

She felt herself spinning and released an involuntary scream. She couldn’t see anything but white. She didn’t know how to drive in this kind of weather. All she could do is hold on. Was she supposed to put on the breaks? Straighten the wheel? God, help me, she thought wildly. She just couldn’t remember.

As if in answer to her prayer, the car began to slow, then finally came to a halt. Her hands were shaking badly as she relaxed her grip on the wheel. What was she supposed to do now? She didn’t know if she was headed in the same direction or not. For that matter, she didn’t even know if she was still on the road or if she’d ended up on the side of the road.

It wasn’t until then that she realized the car had died. She turned the key in the ignition, but it wouldn’t start. She pumped the gas and tried again. Nothing. “Damn it!”
Here she sat, in the middle of nowhere with a dead car and the blizzard from hell blowing outside. There was no one to call; by now, Derrick would have convinced everyone that she was crazy—or worse, a murderer. She had no idea who she could trust, so had just run—into the worst storm in Oklahoma history, apparently.

Her eyes burned as she considered her situation. Dead car. Middle of the night. Storm of the century. With a muttered curse, she tried once more to start the car. Still nothing. There was nothing she could do.

Her eye caught on the book lying on the seat next to her. With an almost hysterical laugh, she picked it up. At least I won’t be bored, she thought wildly, and tossed the book aside.

Kari considered getting out of the car and trying to walk—but didn’t—at least not yet. She’d read somewhere that you were supposed to stay with a stranded vehicle. Right now, though, she wanted away.

Would she rather freeze in a car or let Derrick and his henchmen find her? What did it matter? she thought yet again. At least with the cold, she’d just fall asleep. She had little doubt that if Derrick got a hold of her that her death would be far different. She shivered, both from cold and from reaction. There was nothing she could do. If I car didn’t come along soon—she’d freeze before Derrick had a chance to find her.

She didn’t have any clue at all where she was. Somewhere between Oklahoma City and Shawnee. Now, though, she didn’t even know which direction was which.

Cautiously, she opened the door and stepped out of the car. It was too dark to see anything much, but at least it looked like the car was on the edge of the road. At least some poor soul wouldn’t plow into her car. Freezing, she climbed back into the car. Damn it! Just a little luck would be nice. Someone will stop. Someone safe.

She wanted to live! Not that it mattered one iota what she wanted.

She’d run from Derrick as fast and as far as she could—only to put herself more at risk.
It wasn’t supposed to snow like this here! She was sitting on some road in the middle of central Oklahoma. She cursed her own stupidity for getting off the freeway. At least there, someone would have spotted her—even just a cop doing patrols.

But here, no one would find her. She hadn’t seen one car the entire time she’d been on the road—and that had been when she could see the road. Now, she had no certain idea where the road even was. With a tired sigh, she leaned back and closed her eyes. At least she had a flashlight, and wasn’t in total darkness. She guessed that was some small consolation. Part of her wanted to grab the hammer in the backseat and bash something, but of course, she didn’t do that. As it was, she was freezing. As satisfying as breaking a window might be, it would also make her freeze a lot quicker. Suddenly, she was tired. Just a little sleep. She’d been running on adrenaline for hours. It had easily been twenty-four hours since she’d slept.

She’d sleep a few hours until morning. Maybe someone would come by once the sun was out. Surely at least some road crews would be out trying to clear the major roads.
With that thought, she remembered she’d avoided the major roads. She wasn’t anywhere near a major road right now. That likely had as much to do with her not seeing another car for hours as the storm did.

Someone had to live around here somewhere—but even as she had the thought, she couldn’t stop the pessimistic thought that she wouldn’t be waking up. Even with her coat on, she was already freezing. Her hands felt like blocks of ice. The radio had said the temperature was in the single digits. She was more than sure the chill factor was much colder than that. Maybe if she layered her clothes? Would it matter? Probably not, she decided gloomily. She’d be likely frozen by morning.

If you'd like to leave a comment, please do. I love hearing from my readers.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

LINKED hits the TOP 100 in Fantasy Series on Amazon -- So a CONTEST

It's been a long time coming! Linked hit the Top 100 list on Amazon at 3am. Now, you may be asking why this excites me. It doesn't mean I've sold 2000 books today or anything. It just means that enough people are reading it that it's finally making a place for itself on the lists.

Can I have a moment of ecstatic excitement and squeal? I'm #60. Hey, it's a Top 100 Best Seller in that category--so does that mean I'm a bestselling author now? (LOL)

Well, in any case. I'm happy. When I'm happy--I want to make you happy.


A CONTEST of course. There are a few things you have to do, though. See options below

I just uploaded a new version of The Storm Within, because I wanted to add a second story to it. So, now, it has two romantic suspense stories in it.

Linked, The Storm Within & Table For Two are on sale for 99 cents this weekend as well.

Help me celebrate!

Oh, and if you have Amazon Prime, you can borrow LINKED and keep it as long as you like.

The Storm Within & Table For Two have a new cover. If you don't see the new cover, don't download it--it won't have the free 2nd story in it. Here's the cover.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Thursday Thirteen

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Today on Thursday Thirteen

13 Writing To Publish Tips

1. First--you must be a reader to be a writer
2. Write something every day--even if it's a journal or a blog.
3. Revise what you write--usually more than once.
4. Find a critique group (no, not your best friend or your mom, sister, or neighbor)
5. Second round of edits.
6. Find Beta Readers -- These nice folks will pick apart your story for you.
7. Edit based on Beta Response
8. Now have it professionally edited/proofread
9. Design your cover--hire a professional and get opinions--format book
10. Find Reviewers -- Don't put it up without reviews - do soft-release
11. Promote your book/story/novella (after reviews are listed on Amazon & B&N)
12. NEVER comment on negative reviews
13. Start the next book!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

WWW Wednesday and WoW (Waiting on Wednesday)

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

I a currently reading: Jeff Bennington The Indie Guide to the Universe
I just finished reading: Sheryl Steines The Day of First Sun
Next I will be reading: Kevin Domenic Key To The Stars

You can find what I'm reading and will be reading here:

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own WWW Wednesdays post, or share your answers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks! :D

Leave a comment with your WWW or answer here -- one lucky commenter will win a copy of either The Storm Within OR Linked -- both are my Romance Titles out now

Now for the Wow (Waiting on Wednesday)Hosted by Breaking The Spine

Have a book you're DYING to read? "Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine (check them out) that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

This book will be released in June. I was lucky enough to get it to review--though I haven't read it yet--can't wait to!

It's on Amazon for pre-order.

Everyone at Mythos Academy knows me as Gwen Frost, the Gypsy girl who uses her psychometry magic to find lost objects - and who just may be dating Logan Quinn, the hottest guy in school. But I'm also the girl the Reapers of Chaos want dead in the worst way. The Reapers are the baddest of the bad, the people who murdered my mom. So why do they have it in for me? It turns out my mom hid a powerful artefact called the Helheim Dagger before she died. Now, the Reapers will do anything to get it back. They think I know where the dagger is hidden, but this is one thing I can't use my magic to find. All I do know is that the Reapers are coming for me - and I'm in for the fight of my life.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tuesday Teaser

I just found a great new thing I'm going to start doing on my blog. Why not try it on yours, too!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Go ahead and list your own, too! And a link to your blog.

I'm going to list two for me today.

1. Sheryl Steines - The Day of First Sun (Urban fantasy romance)

a. "Next year I'll beat you!" Bobby yelled. "No you won't," she teased. (pg. 12)

2. Hope Welsh - Linked

a. "It's in your heart, child. Your brain will catch up." (pg. 100)

So, what are your teasers from a book you're reading now?




Monday, March 19, 2012

Author Interview with Sheryl Steines

Please enjoy this interview with Sheryl Steines, author of the urban fantasy novel, The Day of First Sun. Then read on to learn how you can win huge prizes as part of this blog tour, including $450 in Amazon gift cards, a Kindle Fire, and 5 autographed copies of the book.


If you could travel in a time machine, would you go back to the past or into the future?

I would go to the past, meet famous people, see history as it happened. I’d be afraid to go to the future. I’m not sure I really want to know when I die.

If you could jump into a book, and live in that world, which would it be?

This might be to expected, but I would love to live at Hogwarts, stroll through Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade, play with all the magical stuff, and visit the Weasleys at their house. I saw the Harry Potter exhibit at the museum a few years ago, and it just seemed so fun.

If a movie was made about your life, who would you want to play the lead role and why?

Sandra Bullock. Since she became a movie star, people all over the place tell me I look like her. She’s also funny. I can only imagine how much more interesting and funny my life would be if she were the lead.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I always knew I wanted to be a writer. There were times that I thought I wanted to be an interior decorator, but in the end, I was always much happier writing and creating.

Who are your favorite authors of all time?

I have two. The first would be Stephen King. I was always amazed by the detail and imagination he used in his books, especially the earliest books. I watched him on an interview many years ago and he was talking about the things he was afraid of, one of which was sleeping with his feet outside the covers at night. He would always cover his feet so that the monsters under the bed wouldn’t get him. I laughed so hard because I do the same thing. J.K. Rowling is also a favorite. Her life story and Harry Potter reminded me that I wanted to be a writer when I was seven. She reminded me of the genre that I loved. It got me thinking about what stories intrigued me. I watched her interview on Oprah and cried through the entire thing. It got me thinking of ways to take my personal experiences and hide them in the fantasy world.

What do you do in your free time?

I read, a lot. In the winter, I spend time at museums and go shopping. In the summer, I love to go to flea markets. You could never have too many fleas. I love to travel. I spend most of the summer driving my 1966 Mustang convertible.

What is your guilty pleasure?

I’m a huge fan of Ninja Warrior. Yeah, the Japanese obstacle course. On one side, it’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen. On the other side of it, the obstacles are so challenging, and the participants are so revered for making it through each stage that it is a huge honor to win.

Favorite places to travel?

I love Europe, London being my favorite city. I’ve been to Scotland, France, Italy, Germany and Austria. The Austrian/German Alps are some of the most beautiful landscapes I have ever seen.

Favorite way to spend a rainy day?

In front of the television watching my favorite movies. Who doesn’t love Ferris Buehler’s Day Off and Sixteen Candles.

If you could have a superpower, what would you choose?

Telekinesis! Then I could clean my house without actually having to do anything.


As part of this special promotional extravaganza sponsored by Novel Publicity, the price of the Day of First Sun eBook edition is just 99 cents this week. What’s more, by purchasing this fantastic book at an incredibly low price, you can enter to win many awesome prizes. The prizes include $450 in Amazon gift cards, a Kindle Fire, and 5 autographed copies of the book.

All the info you need to win one of these amazing prizes is RIGHT HERE. Remember, winning is as easy as clicking a button or leaving a blog comment--easy to enter; easy to win!

To win the prizes:
  1. Purchase your copy of The Day of First Sun for just 99 cents
  2. Fill-out the simple form on Novel Publicity
  3. Visit today’s featured social media event
Help my blog win:

The tour blogger who receives the most votes in the traffic-breaker poll will win a $100 gift card. When you visit Novel Publicity’s site to fill-out the contest entry form, don’t forget to VOTE FOR ME.

About the book: A vampire, a rogue wizard and an army of soulless zombies are par for the course for Annie Pearce and Bobby “Cham” Chamsky of the Wizard’s Guard. But when the non-magical princess, Amelie of Amborix, is murdered by magical means, a deeper plot unfolds. Get it on Amazon.

About the author: Behind the wheel of her ’66 Mustang Convertible, Sheryl is a constant surprise, using her sense of humor and relatable style make her books something everyone can enjoy. Visit Sheryl on her website, Twitter, Facebook, or GoodReads.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sample Sunday

HI Everyone

Happy Sunday!

I decided to make Sunday my "Sample" day. So, today, you can get a sneak peek at LINKED without having to download it.


2,000 years ago...

The Evil One stared through the invisible walls holding him and laughed.

They would never be able to vanquish him. Their powers paled in comparison to his own.
With no other option, they had constructed this prison.

Even though the Druids tried to hide it from him, he still heard of the prophecy. His spies were everywhere. He came to force answers from the Druids, but they had been ready for him.

Before he discovered the Druids’ intentions, he had been trapped. Their blood sacrifice had been unable to destroy him, but they ensured he would remain imprisoned here for the next two millennium.

He actually laughed at the Druids when they trapped him. Time was of little consequence to him, as it would pass in the blink of his eye.

He existed since the beginning of time and they were mere mortals. Never would they have the power to destroy him—but something could.

He managed to read only a small part of the prophecy before he had been detected.

When two become one.

He needed to recover those two pieces before anyone else found them. He vowed to make sure they would never have the chance to become one.

He would not be destroyed. And now that he knew what to look for, nothing, and no one, would ever be powerful enough to vanquish him.

Humankind would pay for the Druids’ audacity. Did they think to imprison him and not pay the consequences? Did they think he would suffer their insolence?

He hoped they did. Almost hoped they thought themselves safe from him.

True enough now. For the time being they would be out of his reach. As time passed, they would forget about the threat which lingered over them like a black cloud, circling, gathering speed and force…waiting for the right moment.

Yes…revenge would be his, and humankind would once again bow before him.This prison would not hold him indefinitely. Eventually, he would escape. Then he would find the pieces and destroy them.

Nothing would stand in his way.



Lana Summers shot awake in a cold sweat, her arm outstretched, reaching for someone who wasn’t there. She sat up and brushed the hair away from her damp face.

“What the...?” She glanced around the dark room, half expecting to see her mom. That’s whose voice had screamed in her head.

No, not in her head.

It was from her dream—just a dream. Her mom wasn’t there.

God, it had been so real. Too real.

She shook her head in immediate denial. Her mild psychic abilities never progressed to the same level of her mother’s, thank God. It had only been a ridiculous dream. She refused to accept it as anything paranormal.

I won’t be like you, Mom. I love you, but I won’t be you. I won’t live my life always wondering what horror I’ll see next.

But the dream…it had been so vivid. It had seemed so real. And this wasn’t the first one she’d experienced. She’d had the first one a week after her mother’s death. Though, in that one, her mother hadn’t screamed at her or scared her half to death. All she could remember about it was her mother’s tone seemed urgent, but she couldn’t figure out what was wrong or what her mother wanted to tell her.

Not that she had tried that hard, nor had she wanted to.

Unable to shake it off, Lana put her feet over the side of the bed and slowly stood up, still looking around the room. She slipped her feet into her slippers and had just reached to turn on the bedside lamp when she heard a strange noise.

Her breath held as she listened. Hearing strange noises in an apartment wouldn’t have bothered her, but this was different—closer.

It took only a matter of seconds before she recognized the sound of footsteps. Someone was in the hallway headed toward her bedroom.

Someone was in her apartment! A scream slowly bubbled up in her throat unbidden, but she suppressed it. She had to get out, but how?

The window was her only chance.

Thank God for first-floor apartments, she thought as she grabbed her robe off the foot of her bed and made her way, quick and silent, toward the window. She held her breath again and tried to open the window quietly. It finally opened with a creak, causing her to wince as she slipped one leg over the ledge.

The back of her building had been built on a downward slant of land, so what should have been a four or five foot drop to the ground, ended up being eight.

The doorknob rattled. There was no time to debate the pros and cons of jumping. She could either jump now or…. She didn’t want to wait for the or.

So much for choices, she thought grimly, and jumped feet first.Her ankle twisted as she hit the ground, causing her to fall to her knees and suck in a breath at the sharp pain. She looked up and saw a shadowed figure standing at the window. As she pushed herself up, she turned her head, managing another quick glance. After sticking his head out the window, he threw one leg over the edge.

He was going to do what she’d just done, she realized as she took off around the side of the building.

Lana made her way toward the front of the apartment complex, running as fast as her injured ankle would allow, not even noticing that she’d lost a slipper somewhere along the way.

Footsteps echoed behind her, but she ignored the natural urge to turn around. If she could just make it across the street to the twenty-four hour store, she would be able to get help.

She stumbled and barely managed to catch her balance. The convenience store, and a man standing outside, finally came into view as the passed the edge of her building, and she almost wept with relief. Never before had the sight of dim lights and a stranger made her so happy. It was going to be okay.

Without slowing her pace, Lana finally dared a glance over her shoulder to see if the figure was still following her, and saw him round the corner.


Cole needed a cigarette. For the umpteenth time he wondered why he’d quit the week before. The temptation to light up surged through him, but he had better control than that. Barely. The urges weren’t as frequent now, but when they hit, he really wanted to give in to them. Maybe he should have tried one of the patches or that new medication. He was not one to give in, though, once he’d made up his mind. Why had he decided to quit again? Oh yeah—cancer.

If he couldn’t smoke, he needed gum, and he needed it ten minutes ago.
He saw a convenience store up ahead and debated whether or not to stop. The one closer to his house was only fifteen minutes away, but that meant fifteen minutes longer without gum.

Not to mention the pack of Marlboro that was sitting in his glove box. It had been easier somehow to quit when he knew that there was a pack waiting. So far, it had worked well knowing it was there if he really needed it.

The internal debate didn’t last long. He’d quit. He wasn’t giving up, so he pulled in the parking lot and parked by the front entrance. It was nearly deserted, which suited him just fine. He really wanted that gum.

As he jumped out of his car and headed for the door, a tingling at the back of his neck had him turning his head.

He saw her immediately.

A woman out for a run at one thirty in the morning? Not likely, and certainly not wearing anything but what appeared to be a robe. Obviously something was wrong. She ran with a limp, wearing only one slipper, and glanced over her shoulder.

Gum forgotten, Cole headed toward the edge of the parking lot. A man came darting from behind the building. Instincts—not to mention the terror on the woman’s face—told him the guy following her wasn’t someone she wanted to catch her.

Cole hesitated only a second before sprinting across the street. Horns blasted, and a driver yelled obscenities, but he ignored them.

The woman ran into him fast enough to spin him around. She would have sent them both sprawling to the sidewalk had he not put his hands around her waist to catch her. Either she hadn’t noticed him cross the street, or she was too preoccupied with the man chasing her to care.

“There’s someone after me,” she said breathlessly.

“I know.” He turned back around to get a better glimpse of the man, but he was gone, and that worried him.

She bent over, hands resting on the tops of her legs, trying to catch her breath. “I’m sorry,” she said and straightened. She brushed long curls out of her face, finally giving him a chance to get a good look at her.

Her brown hair glinted with reddish highlights in the glow from the convenience store lights. Fear and pain tainted the smoky blue of her eyes. She stood almost a foot shorter than his own six-two and his innate protective nature kicked in instinctively.Her dark blue robe looked as though she had rolled around in the mud—the remaining slipper on her foot didn’t look much better.

“Are you okay?” Cole asked, his voice soothing. He wanted her to stay calm enough to tell him what was going on, and that wouldn’t happen if she hyperventilated or got hysterical on him. Hell, leave it to me to be in the wrong place at the right time.

She nodded. “I’m okay. I think.”

“Go on into the store and wait for me, alright? I’m going to go see if he’s still around.”
He gave her a hang-in-there smile and a pat on the arm before running in the direction from which she’d come. He didn’t expect to find the guy, but if he could figure out which way he went or where he came from, it might give the cops a place to start.
If she wanted to call the cops.

The thought made him cringe. He hated dealing with the cops. They were the bane of his existence. They didn’t like dealing with him, even though he was a private investigator and one of the good guys. Well, too bad for them. He was involved—whether the cops, or the pretty little thing at the store, liked it or not.

The edge of the woods and the area he’d seen the woman running in showed no recent sign of foot traffic, other than his own.

It had rained the day before, and if anyone had been there, he should have found tracks in the mud. As it stood, the only tracks he found belonged to the woman at the convenience store.

Damn, what’d the bastard do? Disappear into thin air? He frowned. There wouldn’t be anything to show the cops.

If he had the time, he would have shape shifted, but she was still waiting for him at the store and likely terrified.

How did the guy just seem to vanish off the face of the earth in a matter of seconds? He couldn’t explain that one. Yet.

Another niggling feeling pricked at him as he performed one more walk-by of the area, looking for clues he might have missed. Something was missing. At the moment, he didn’t know what exactly, but he wouldn’t drop it until he had some answers. She might not know it, but she would have a shadow until he found them. He wasn’t one to leave a puzzle unsolved.

“Did you find anything?” she asked as soon as he walked back to the store. Her tone was still anxious, but stronger than before.

He shook his head and frowned. “Nothing at all.”

A sigh escaped her lips. “I appreciate you looking, Mr…?”

Cole extended his hand. “My name’s Cole Thomas, ma’am.”

“Thank you. I’m Lana. Lana Summers.” She shook his hand, her grip surprisingly strong. “I suppose I should go see if anything is missing.”

Well, that told him that it wasn’t likely a domestic problem, and since it was an apartment building, he was guessing someone had broken in. Part of him was glad she didn’t look too happy about it going to check on her own. He was going to help, and the look on her face said she didn’t really want to go look by herself. “Would you mind if I went along with you, just to make sure there’s no one around?”

She studied him for a moment, wariness clear in her eyes. He didn’t mind, though. Had someone just broken into his house and chased him down, he’d probably be a tad suspicious of strangers, too.

After a moment of silence, he almost bet her answer would be no.

“No, I would appreciate that, thank you.”

Cole gestured for her to lead the way and took hold of her elbow. “How bad is the ankle?”
“It’s not bad. I can walk on it, so it’s not broken.” She attempted a smile, but it fell short. “Some ice and aspirin and it’ll be good as new. I just landed on it wrong.”
He didn’t agree or disagree, but decided he’d check the damage for himself at the first opportunity.

“Mr. Thomas—”

“Cole. Please, call me Cole,” he said.

This time she managed to smile and it almost reached her eyes. “Cole,” she repeated, “I really appreciate your help. I could be polite and say that you don’t have to go with me, but I won’t.”

He laughed. “That’s quite alright. I’m just glad I can help, ma’am.”

Lana stopped and gave him a look. “If I’m going to call you Cole, then the least you could do is call me Lana. ‘Ma’am’ makes me sound old.”

“Lana it is, then,” he chuckled. “You’ve got some sense of humor, considering the circumstances.” He glanced over, noticed she’d crossed her arms over her chest. “Are you cold?”

She turned her head in his direction, startled. “What? Oh, no. I’m fine, it’s just….”

He nodded. He’d begun to wonder how a woman could act so nonchalant about having her house broken into and having a man chase her down. Hell, most men would have either panicked or done something stupid and ended up hurt—and he wasn’t being sexist. She’d gotten her butt in gear and escaped. Which posed another good question….
“Just how did you get out of your apartment?”

She turned to face him. “I woke up a minute before I heard footsteps, and then I realized someone was in my apartment, so I jumped out of the window.”

He whistled. “Out of the window? No wonder you hurt your ankle. Quick thinking, I might add.”

“Thanks.” She paused in front of a door. “This is my apartment.”

“Bet you’re glad you picked a ground floor apartment.”

It was her turn to laugh. “Yes, I am. And it doesn’t have anything to do with the fact carrying furniture up flights of stairs is a pain.”

Lana grabbed the doorknob and turned. “Crap,” she hissed under her breath and swung back around, a look of absolute disgust on her face. “I don’t have my keys. If you could give me a boost to get back in through my window, I’d appreciate it.”

She started to walk past him, but he placed his hand on her arm. “I’ll go. You don’t need to walk on that ankle any more than necessary and we’re not sure it’s safe.” It was an order, one he’d make sure she followed, but she didn’t need to know that.

He saw the hesitation in her eyes as she thought over what he said. Finally, she sighed. “You’re probably right.”

“I’ll be back in a few minutes,” he said and jogged his way to the back of the building.
Why did her window have to be so high? He could shift, but that was always dicey out in the open, and he didn’t take unnecessary risks unless he absolutely had to.

As he studied the wall, he noticed a small space where a brick had been broken or fallen out. Using that for a foothold, he boosted himself up and climbed in through the open window.

Since she didn’t have her keys, there would be no way for her to get in until he let her in. Knowing he may not get another opportunity, he took a deep breath and imagined the animal he needed to become. Ignoring the pain, he shifted quickly into his tiger.
Somehow the intruder had hidden his tracks, but it wasn’t as easy to hide his scent.
He didn’t have long before she would expect to be let in, so he moved fast, sniffing around the room. He’d been inside less than a minute and knew, without question, that the only human scent belonged to Lana. Lavender, soap—nothing else.

Quickly, he checked the rest of her apartment, going room-by-room, still puzzling over the fact that the only smells he came across in the entire place belonged to her. Someone had been in her apartment, she’d said. Considering he’d seen the person chasing after her, he knew damn well she hadn't been lying.

This was wrong, dreadfully wrong. There must’ve been something more sinister going on than a bungled burglary. This was getting deeper and stranger by the minute. He should have smelled some other scent—anything. So why hadn’t he?

Trying one last time, he held still, his back completely rigid. His nose moved from side to side as his nostrils flared, his ears taut, listening for sounds that didn’t belong.


Did she know more than she let on? If she didn’t, should he keep it that and investigate it quietly on the side, or should he question her more and find out if she was hiding anything?

On a frustrated growl, he changed back into human form. He still had no answers, just a stockpile of new questions.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Need a Read for St. Patricks Day Tomorrow?

LINKED is FREE on Amazon Kindle Today ONLY. Save $2.99 and give my writing a try if you haven't.

Lana is awoken from a dream with a warning to "RUN!" She wakes to noise and realizes it's an intruder. She climbs out her bedroom window and runs for the convenience store across the street for help.

Cole sees her running and offers his help, after all, it's what he does. He's a PI and he wants to be sure she's safe.

What neither realizes is that they are involved in an Ancient Prophecy. If they don't solve it in time, the Evil will win--and his winning means that Lana dies.

The problem is Lana wants nothing to do with her psychic abilities. Cole can understand, but she has to accept them--and his--if they are to win the battle.

Evil is watching...and time is running out.

Exclusively on Amazon

Enter to win a free copy of The Storm Within, my romantic suspense, as well. Answer the following questions in the comment section below by 11:59 PM on 3/31. Each correct answer and thing done is one entry.

1. Who is the female protagonist (heroine)
2. Who is the male protagonist (hero)
3. What is the title of the book?
4. What genre is it?
5. Follow my blog :)
6. Follow me on Twitter :)
7-10 Post on Twitter about this contest and mention @hopewelsh and get 3 entries automatically!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Ah Daylight Longer -- And on Writing and Reading

Some people get really irritable in the winter. How do I know this, you may ask. I know it because I'm one of them.

In the winter, it's always harder for me to stay chipper and bright. It's not even because it's colder in winter, as I live in Florida. I called this winter the Winter That Wasn't. We had very, very little cold this winter. (Thank you, God)

Still--with shorter days--I'm grumpy. I think they call it seasonal affective disorder. See, I'm not nuts, it has a name.

Oh wait--the fact that it has a name might make me nuts? Nah, it doesn't. :)

During the winter, I tend to do less writing and more reading. Which seems kind of backwards to me, but there it is. In winter I want to escape and not think, so I read a lot more.

I've read some really good books lately--most of them are reviewed on my review blog: Books To Love Reviews. I enjoy doing book reviews, I must admit.

That brings me back to writing. To be a writer, you must be a reader. I'm sure I've said it before, but it's true. I try to read in whatever genre I'm currently writing in--and I love to read new authors I've never read before. Lately, I've been on a wild YA craze. I'm addicted--and believe me, I'm not a young adult--not even close. Still, I really enjoy YA novels. I love authors like PC Cast, Imogen Rose, Amanda Hocking and Gena Showalter. But there are some newbie indie authors I've enjoyed, too (other than Imogen and Amanda)

I have a queue full of books--and half of them are YA. I recently joined NetGalley, and I seem to be getting approved for Harlequin and Kensington the most. So, look for more reviews of those authors.

I'm also the member of several facebook groups having to do with writing and have offered to read books for some of the other indie author.

Do you like to read new authors? What have you been reading?