#NEWRELEASE: Eyes Wide Open by Lucy Felthouse

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WARNING!!  This book is hot!  You guys know I like to feature a little bit of everything here on The Belle, so fair warning:  this is a BDSM ménage novel that may well burn your fingers.

A standalone novel from the Totally Five Star imprint.

An ordinary girl catapulted into an extraordinary world meets two even more extraordinary men—but what will she do when she discovers their sexy secret?

Fiona Gillespie moved to London shortly after graduating to take advantage of the opportunities the capital could offer. However, months later, she’s still living in a horrid flat and working in a grimy East End pub. The problem is, she doesn’t really know what she wants to do, career-wise. So when she happens upon an advertisement for a job at a plush Mayfair hotel, she jumps at the chance. A great deal of determination and a spot of luck land Fiona her dream role.

But working at the Totally Five Star London is just the beginning. She adores the role and flourishes, impressing her bosses and making her increasingly determined to climb the career ladder.

While her career is flying, though, her love life is non-existent. She hasn’t even thought about men, never mind met or dated one for months, so when she bumps into two gorgeous businessmen in the hotel, she’s surprised to find her head has been well and truly turned. Even more surprisingly, they flirt with her—both of them! She’s drawn to James and Logan, despite feeling that they’re way out of her league.

When a misunderstanding leads Fiona to James and Logan’s sumptuous top-floor suite, she has no idea what she’s about to uncover. Scenes of people-trafficking, drug-pushing and wild sex parties all appear in her active imagination. Yet what she actually sees is something she’d never even considered before, something that piques her interest.

After discovering their sexy secret, what will she do with this new-found knowledge?

Reader Advisory: This book contains scenes of anal play, spanking, sex toys and bondage.

Buy links: http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk/published-works/eyes-wide-open-totally-five-star-london/

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26080607-eyes-wide-open

Book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ld7t_6fL46w

Wow… spanking, bondage, toys?!  Sign me up!  LOL  But don’t take my word for it… here’s a little excerpt…

Continuing to surreptitiously peer at the men over the rim of her glass, it hit her that this was the first time in months that she’d looked at a man with interest, much less two men—and at the same time! But, ready to snatch her gaze away if one of them happened to glance at her, she realized that it wasn’t surprising that the pair had attracted her attention.

The tailored business suits would draw the eye even on an ugly guy. But on these two, the fine clothing was practically an orgasm for the gaze. They sat opposite each other, and their angle to her meant that she had a view of both their profiles—lucky her.

The one to her right had very dark, almost black hair, with a bit of a curl to it, a long straight nose, a trimmed goatee and, if she wasn’t mistaken, deep blue eyes. It was hard to tell for sure from this distance and perspective.

The one on her left had lighter, shorter hair, stubble that by some magical feat still looked smart, and the most sinful lips she’d ever set eyes on. And speaking of eyes, she thought perhaps his were green. What she wouldn’t give to go and check both of them out close up, preferably naked.

Shocked at her own sudden lustful thoughts, she inhaled more than drank another sip of the juice. Unfortunately, it hit her throat all wrong and she almost slammed the glass down as she started to cough. She tried so hard to suppress the cough, eager not to draw attention to herself, that she made it worse. Snatching up the thick linen serviette from the table, she held it to her mouth as she spluttered in a most embarrassing manner, and tears began to roll down her cheeks. By now, she was sure that the whole damn restaurant was staring at her, and she wished the tablecloths reached the floor, like the ones in the restaurant upstairs, so she could hide under the table until she regained her composure.

Swallowing repeatedly to try to soothe her irritated throat, she gasped as a gentle hand laid on her shoulder, which set her off all over again.

“Oh God,” came a voice. “I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to make you jump. I just wanted to make sure you were all right. See if I could help.”

Unable to speak, Fiona waved a hand to try to signal that she’d be okay, but unless the guy was a mind reader, he’d have no luck figuring that out. Blinking through the tears that marred her vision, her urge to hide underneath the table grew stronger. Christ, it was only the hottie with the blue eyes. And, if she wasn’t mistaken, his sexy friend with the green eyes was also hovering close by, concern etched into his handsome features.

Managing to drag in a breath, she huffed out, “Thank you.”

Just then, Jeremy arrived with a carafe of water, complete with ice, and poured her a glassful. “Here you go, Fiona. Drink this. Are you all right? Anything else I can get you?”

 Author Bio:

Lucy Felthouse is a very busy woman! She writes erotica and erotic romance in a variety of subgenres and pairings, and has over 100 publications to her name, with many more in the pipeline. These include several editions of Best Bondage Erotica, Best Women’s Erotica 2013 and Best Erotic Romance 2014. Another string to her bow is editing, and she has edited and co-edited a number of anthologies, and also edits for a small publishing house. She owns Erotica For All, is book editor for Cliterati, and is one eighth of The Brit Babes. Find out more at http://www.lucyfelthouse.co.uk. Join her on Facebook and Twitter, and subscribe to her newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/gMQb9 .

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NEW RELEASE: Erotic Takeover by Tina Donahue

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Hey kids!  I haven’t featured a new release on The Belle in quite a while, so I thought– what the hell.  And boy did I pick a scorcher this time.  My friend and colleague at Ellora’s Cave, Tina Donahue, has just released her latest, Erotic Takeover.  It’s a story about the curvaceous and beautiful Jodi who is longing for the attention of her boss, sexy photographer Mac.  Take a look at this smoldering excerpt and I promise you’ll want to read more…

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True to his word, Mac didn’t touch her in any inappropriate places while he strolled the aisles, pulling boxes and cans off the shelves, reading the ingredients as if he’d never done anything like this before.

Jodi suspected he hadn’t, finding her life an adventure he’d never had to face. For someone like him, it was a fun challenge to budget money, clip coupons, search for all the specials. At least until it became a bore, which would happen eventually.

Her heart cramped at the thought that this would be their first and last grocery trip together. Never had she wanted him more. He was so damn hot and adorable. Like a little boy with his first puzzle, trying to put all the pieces together.

Bent at the waist, Mac studied the store labels beneath the spaghetti sauces. Each showed the cost-per-ounce comparison between the brands.

Two middle-aged women reached past him for their choices. He apparently didn’t notice.

They stared at his luscious profile then gave Jodi the once over, dismissing her as though she had nothing to do with him. She could read their thoughts in their expressions—a hottie like him surely wouldn’t be with someone like her.

Sighing, Jodi checked the time. They’d been here forty minutes already. Mac looked as though he could go all night at this.

“This one,” he said, tapping the bottle of Prego. “It’s three cents cheaper than the other—wait, I think we have a coupon.” He checked his iPhone and beamed as if he’d just inherited Garner’s. “Fifty cents off. Awesome. I’m adding it to your shopping cart.” He put the Prego in her basket. “Where’s the cheap wine?”

“Why?”

“We can’t have spaghetti without booze. What kind of cook are you?”

Jodi lifted her shoulders, her mind stuck on how he’d said “we”, as though they were a couple…or maybe just friends. That had to be it. Mac had fun when he was with her, just as he would with a guy, with the added bonus of sex.

“You can’t cook?” he finally said then sighed. “Looks as if tonight’s on my shoulders.”

“You’re going to make a meal for us?”

“Sure. How hard can it be? If I hit a problem, I’ll Google it on my phone or call Joe.”

She frowned. “Who’s Joe?”

“The chef at Garner’s. Great guy. He can talk me through anything.”

Jodi laughed. “You do know there are cooking instructions on the packages.”

Mac picked up the box of spaghetti. His eyebrows lifted as he read the directions.

God, he was beautiful when he was clueless. “Do you eat out for every meal?”

“Nope.” He tossed the box back in her cart. “I get delivery or takeout sometimes.”

“You don’t even have coffee at your place?”

“There’s a Starbucks less than a mile away.” He leaned into her and murmured, “That’s why God made them, for guys like me.”

Wow, he really was a virgin at this. Tonight was going to be something.

***********************

Whew… I think I need a Mac in my life.  Here’s a bit more about Tina…

I’m an award-winning, bestselling novelist in erotic, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance for Kensington, Samhain Publishing, Ellora’s Cave, Siren Publishing, Booktrope, and indie. Yay! Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, Romantic Times and numerous online sites have praised my work, and trust me, I’m forever grateful for that. I’ve had my books reach finals in the EPIC competition, one title was named Book of the Year at a review site, and others have won awards in RWA-sponsored contests. I’m actually featured in the 2012 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market. Talk about feeling like a freaking star. Before my writing career, I was the editor of an award–winning Midwestern newspaper and worked in Story Direction for a Hollywood production company. Outside of being an admitted and unrepentant chocoholic, I’ve flown a single-engine plane (scary stuff), rewired an old house using an electricity for dummies book, and have been known to moan like Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally whenever I’m eating anything Mexican or Italian. Yeah, I like to eat (burp).

You can check me out here – yes, I am everywhere!  J

 FB Fanpage: http://on.fb.me/1ChWdD7

Email: tina@tinadonahue.com Website: http://bit.ly/15Xy6LI

Blog: http://bit.ly/1yRB9k9

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1wFmIu6

Twitter: http://bit.ly/1ziy4IU

Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1Dl8DHy

Triberr: http://bit.ly/1CE2ec7

Pinterest: http://bit.ly/1yFLeMx

Amazon author page: http://amzn.to/1ChWFkO

My page at TRR: http://bit.ly/1vb7eEc

EC Author Page: http://bit.ly/1Dh9wor

Samhain Author Page: http://bit.ly/1Bvw6mL

Sweet ‘n Sexy Divas: http://bit.ly/1ChWN3K

Romance Books 4 US: http://bit.ly/1JPtfeS

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Now, down to brass tacks— Tina’s also hosting a Rafflecopter giveaway.  You can enter to win a whole slew of eBooks (40 eBooks by 30 different authors)!  Just go on over to Tina’s site and enter to win!  http://www.tinadonahue.com/massive-e-book-giveaway-contest/ 

 

Amazon Reviews: Proceed With Caution

beautykingdomGood morning, Dear Readers!  It’s a beautiful day here in sunny South Carolina.  I do hope it’s sunny and warm where you are.  I thought I’d begin this latest rant (yes, brace yourself.  it’s going to be a rant.) with an exclamation of how excited I am to see the newest chapter in A.N. Roquelaure (Anne Rice for those that might not know)’s Beauty series.  If you know anything about me at all you know that part of the reason I do what I do is because of the original Beauty trilogy (don’t worry, I’m going to put a link up later so you can get them for yourself). If you’ve read my novel Beast of Burden, you probably recognize that I was very much influenced by Rice.

I read the original Beauty Trilogy for the first time at probably twelve or thirteen years old.  I smuggled them out of my sister’s room (sorry, Lucy Blue) and read all three in a weekend.  They opened my eyes to a world of not just kinky sex (I already had a rudimentary knowledge of sexy stuff at that point) but to a world where the act of reading was actually a sensual experience.  With every word in those books I was shocked, delighted, aroused and utterly intoxicated.  By words.  The descriptions of the people and places and experiences are so visceral and those images have stayed with me all these years.  I owe Ms. Rice a tremendous debt of gratitude.  She made me a reader, a writer and a woman in that single weekend with just under a thousand pages of text.  Since then I’ve read those books all the way through at least a dozen times.  I had to purchase a new set a few years ago because the ones I had were missing pages and the covers were torn.  I consider them to be my personal reference.  When I’m writing an erotic book and I get lost, I read Beauty’s Punishment (my favorite of the trilogy) so that I can remember that erotic stories are not just about sex, but about the people and the story.  The words. Nowhere in those books does anyone talk about dripping wet love holes. Nor does the dialogue make you cringe.  (“I fuck.  Hard.”  What?!!)  The world in which Beauty and her companions exist is a world where sexual slavery is not only accepted, but longed for.  It’s a symbol of status.  Therefore, there are no silly contracts or instructions on how to properly flog your sub. Rice has no interest writing a BDSM instruction manual or a treatise on how to properly engage in an abusive relationship.  It’s a FANTASY.  It seems with all the erotic fiction out there, we’ve forgotten that these are FANTASIES that are supposed to entertain and titillate.  Not inspire a lifestyle.  But I digress…

Now comes the rant.

I was reading the Amazon reviews of the new book, Beauty’s Kingdom, this morning when I got to work.  I plan to go and get my copy this weekend, but I was curious as to what others were saying.  They were all pretty positive, but I’m having a hard time believing any of them.  NONE of the reviewers on that first page had ever read the first books.  NONE.  One of them claimed that “The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty” came out in 1999.  Another said that she hadn’t read the originals because she didn’t think that they would be her cup of tea, but she got an ARC of this and thought what the hell. I get the distinct impression that all of these folks picked it up and thought, “I wonder if this is as good as 50 Shades?”  Which just cuts me to the core for a number of reasons that I’m sure you can guess based on past posts.  The reason why this is annoying to me is because what I really want to know is— will Beauty’s Kingdom stand up alongside the original trilogy?  Is it edgy and sexy and dripping with raw sensuality like the originals?  None of these folks who I’m sure are very intelligent people could tell me because they hadn’t done their research.  And if they’re getting ARCs, then they aren’t just the “average reader” anymore.  They’re a pro reviewer, for lack of a better term.  The “average reader” is looking to them for guidance before they spend the money.  They have a responsibility, in my opinion.  It would be like Roger Ebert reviewing Star Wars after only having watched the last fifteen minutes.

At any rate, despite the purist rage, I’m really excited to get my copy of Beauty’s Kingdom in a couple of days.  I’ll be sure to post my review here when I’m done AND on Amazon.  If for no other reason, then I believe in supporting authors– even superstars like Anne Rice.  And I wouldn’t be a true indie author if I didn’t remind you…

HEY!  If you like erotic retellings of fairy tales, try Beast of Burden by Alexandra Christian!  Don’t believe me?  Try an excerpt…

***********

His words were cut short by another booming of thunder so loud it echoed off the stone walls, throwing the oil lamp tobeastofburden_original the floor at his feet. Without care for who he was or how he frightened her, Sascha leapt from the bed and threw herself into his arms. At first he was paralyzed with shock, having no idea how to react to this sudden change. After a few moments of her sobbing into his shoulder, he found himself wrapping his arms around her protectively.

“It’s alright,” he soothed. “You’re safe.”

“No I’m not,” she cried. “I’m as unsafe as any one girl could possibly be. Locked up in this castle without a soul that I know. A slave that has no idea what to do or say!” She burst into another torrent of sobs that left her shuddering against him. In a swift movement, he lifted her into his arms and carried her to the chaise by the fire.

The embers had burned low, but still offered some illumination and warmth. He cradled her body against his, tucking her head under his chin. “You’ve nothing to fear, little one,” he purred into her ear softly. “No harm will come to you here.”

“I wish I could believe you, My Lord,” she sniffled.

“Why can’t you?”

She hesitated, the words catching in her throat. How could she tell him how he frightened her? How the slightest glance from him brought terror and arousal in one crushing wave. It was too humiliating and shameful to admit. “I just…I mean…you…”

“Are you afraid of me, Sascha?” He asked this question so matter-of-factly that she nodded before she could stop herself. She blushed deeply and he chuckled. “Put your mind at ease, girl. I promise that it’s not my intention to hurt you.”

They sat on the chaise for several minutes, neither one speaking. The only sounds were the crackling of the fire and the storm raging beyond the walls. Finally, Sascha stared up at her new Master and realized the absurdity of their situation. “My Lord?”

“Cianan.”

“What?” She looked up at him, clearly confused.

“My name. Cianan. Anyone who awakens me in the middle of the night should call me by my given name.” He smiled warmly then tensed again. “But only here.”

Sascha nodded. “Cianan,” she began, her voice still trembling. “Why are you suddenly being so kind to me?”

“You thought me unkind before?” She could only stare at him. “Perhaps I can be a little rough around the edges,” he admitted. “I never meant to be unkind. I beg your pardon if it seemed so.” She seemed to accept this and their silence resumed. She relaxed into his embrace and he sighed, relieved she wasn’t going to run. He inhaled deeply, taking in the scent of her, committing it to memory. Every breath made him believe in her more and more. She was his mate and he would do everything he could to convince her of that fact. “I can feel more questions burning on your tongue, little one.”

Sascha blushed again. “Well…I was wondering…the library…”

“What about it?” His jaw tensed.

“Might I borrow a book? I like to read,” she asked nervously. She kept her eyes trained on the flames before her, not wanting to see any anger on his face. “And I noticed you had a beautiful library.”

“As I’ve told you, you may go anywhere within the castle grounds you like…”

“Except for the cellar,” she finished. “But why not there?” This was the real question that burned on her tongue. The greatest mystery that had grown in her mind.

“It is none of your affair,” he answered stiffly, moving her carefully aside and standing by the fireplace. “It’s my place and you are never to enter. Do you understand?” His eyes flashed with a sudden fury and Sascha cowered.

“Of course, My Lord,” she replied, her eyes cast downward. “I will respect your wishes.”

He looked down at her, trying to smile reassuringly. “Of course you will.” The clock on the other side of the room struck the hour and Sascha yawned. “We should get you into bed lest you be exhausted in the morning.”

“And what should I expect in the morning?” she asked, allowing him to help her to her feet and lead her toward the bed. “Shall I report to the kitchens or the stables?”

He looked puzzled. “Neither.” He pulled back the covers and gestured for her to climb into the bed.

She obeyed and continued. “Well… I was sent here as your slave. But looking around me and the clothes given for me to wear, I just can’t figure what my duties should be.”

“To do whatever I require,” he answered simply, tucking the coverlet around her body. “And right now I require that you sleep.” He turned to leave, but was stopped with her hand on his arm.

“Couldn’t you just stay with me, My Lord?”

He raised his eyebrow. “Of course not. It wouldn’t be appropriate…”

“Please,” she pleaded. “Just until I’ve gone to sleep.” Her eyes looked past him to the window where the wind and rain still pounded at the stone walls. “Storms frighten me so.”

He sighed, defeated by her eyes again. He looked around and pulled a chair from the other side of the room to her bedside and sat down. “It seems that of the two of us, I am more slave to you.”

Forgive Me Somehow, Danielle Steele

CLICK ME to buy!

CLICK ME to buy!

In case there’s someone out there who didn’t know, my big sis, Lucy Blue, is a much better writer than me.  So much better that I’ve let her take over my blog today to talk about her new release, Alpha Romeo.  It’s a scintillating tell-all book written in the style of a Hollywood memoir.  Think about it this way– it’s the book about Angelina Jolie that you’ve always wanted to read.  Lucy herself describes the book as being  throwback to the old Danielle Steele/ Sidney Sheldon days.  Anyway, today she’s taking over to talk about how she came to write Alpha Romeo and why it’s such an important book for her. 

***********

When I was a teen-ager, my mother’s favorite writer was Danielle Steele.  It was one of the many things we fought about.  “Those books are just garbage,” I would tell her.  “They all have the same stupid, melodramatic plot.  The characters are paper dolls.  They read like the back of a cake mix.  You read Thomas Hardy for fun, for heaven’s sake.  How can you read that crap?”

                As I recall, her defense usually ran along the lines of different strokes for different folks.  But if I’d been particularly obnoxious, she might point out that she couldn’t understand how her beautiful daughter could enjoy “sickness” like Stephen King and Anne Rice, either, but she still loved me.

                As I got older and started writing fiction of my own, she read every word I wrote.  She was what that sicko Stephen King would call my “first reader,” and she praised it all, even the stuff outside her comfort zone, even the stuff I never finished.  She encouraged me every step of the way, and when I sold my first book, a horror opus about vampires, consumptive whores, and Shakespeare, no one could have been more proud.

                Mama’s health was never great, but about ten years ago, she took a definite turn for the worse.  I was in the midst of writing about medieval vampires for Pocket Books.  I actually made my first draft deadline for The Devil’s Knight during a two-week leave of absence I had taken from my day job to take care of her after her second open heart surgery.  I don’t remember ever having the conscious thought to write a “Mama book.”  I was very happy with my vamps.  But right around that same time, reading a tabloid account of a celebrity divorce, I got the idea for Scarlett Cross, a movie star who’s been haunted her whole life by the violent death of her mother.  I started writing about her in first person, a technique I hadn’t used for anything but short stories since college, because that was just how she came out of my head.

                There are no supernatural monsters in Scarlett’s world.  Maybe at that point in my life, the real world seemed a lot scarier than any horror I could think up.  Maybe I lost the knack for believing in fairies and witches and vamps for a while.  I know I made Scarlett a movie star to keep the fantasy, to keep that distance–the same reason, I suspect, that all of Danielle Steele’s heroines in those days were fashion models and lady business magnates and the daughters of Russian nobility.  Those women go through hell, but they look fabulous doing it, and they never have to worry about stuff like money or bad plumbing (at least not after the first fifty pages).  I know for me at that time, the story of an ordinary woman watching her mother waste away was beyond my talent and strength.  But I could write the outlandish trials and tribulations of Scarlett Cross at lightning speed, wallowing in her pain.  I wrote her made-up memoir right alongside my paranormals, hundreds and hundreds of pages of her voice telling the lurid story of her life while my own life as I had always known it fell apart.

                And out of that came my latest book, Alpha Romeo, the story of Scarlett’s first love.  Mama passed away in 2008, years before my notebooks full of Scarlett gelled into anything like an actual book, but sections of that manuscript were the last of my writing she ever read.  “I love this one,” she told me.  “This one is you.  This is the one.”  And while I know my vamps are as much me as Scarlett, and I still think Danielle Steele’s writing kind of sucks, I love this story in a way I’ve never loved anything else I’ve written.  Because I know she would love it, not because her daughter wrote it, but because it’s her kind of book. 

****************

Our poor mother always wondered how she ended up with two daughters who liked to hide in a fantasy world.  I think it’s safe to say that we are exactly what she made us. Here’s more about the book:

If the tabloids only knew.

Scarlett Cross is the classic Hollywood princess. Daddy is a movie star; Mama was a supermodel murdered when Scarlett was only four years old. Now she’s eighteen pretending to be younger for the sake of her father’s image and starting her own career as the muse of a famous European auteur. But bad boy actor Romeo Kidd is everything she’s ever wanted. He makes her feel safe and loved and wanted for the first time in her life, and she’ll do anything to keep from letting him go.

If Alpha sounds like your kind of book too, you can click the image above and zoom right over to buy it!  It’s also available from Purple Sword Publications and All Romance if you prefer a different format.  They also have nifty-neato excerpts so you can test drive first!! 

NEW RELEASE: Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

Gentlemen Prefer Blondes_PROOF3

Well baby loves, I’ve been away on vacation for a week but now I’m back and ready to roll!  The last few days I’ve been playing “catch up” at the day job, doing LOTS of laundry and trying to figure out Google+ (Do people really use that?  If you do, please join me there and teach me the ways of your people.).

Well is there a more perfect way to come back after vacation than to have a shiny new release?  I don’t think so.  That’s right, it’s finally available from Ellora’s Cave— “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.”  It’s a short little erotic horror piece that was shamelessly inspired by the craziness of the #Sherlock fandom.  In fact, I’m really expecting some kind of cease and desist order from #BenedictCumberbatch ‘s legal team.  I defy you not to see the similarities in the “hero”, Alexander Kensington and Mr. #Cumberbatch.  Though, I have to apologize a little for that.  I can’t tell you why, as it would spoil the story.  Just keep in mind— it’s erotic HORROR.  “Happily ever after” is not part of the equation.  So I’m going to shut up and give you a little glimpse….

****

I did a little research before hitting the salon. Just a little. Alex’s tastes in women haven’t really changed all that much—blonde stick figures with lazy bedroom eyes and pale skin. Or, as I like to call them, corpses. The hardest part, really, was losing the weight. For a year I’ve done nothing but eat seaweed and go for unenergetic walks around the block. The good news is, I now have that ghostly, wan look I’ve always wanted. Then all I needed was a little hair dye, some makeup and a new red dress. Standing in front of the full length mirror in the hotel bathroom, I surprised myself. For a moment I might have believed that I could actually be one of them. One of those posh peacocks who looked like living goddesses as they strolled down the street.

Teetering on high heels, I step out to cross the street to his hotel. It’s late, nearly midnight. He’ll be at the bar, having a drink at a table in the corner and trying to be unobtrusive. It’s been his habit each night for several weeks. Come in from set, take a shower, put on something casual and un-put-together and head down to the hotel bar for a vodka and tonic. He stays there for about an hour. That’s how long it usually takes for some doe-eyed waitress to catch his eye. They exchange niceties. He compliments her smile. She stammers and blushes, immediately recognizing him by that gravely baritone voice. Innocently, he flashes his famous boyish grin and begs for her utmost discretion, which she will, of course give. At least until the next morning on Twitter. He always leaves a pile of cash on the table and then ushers her out of the bar and up to his room. It’s Alex’s M.O. and it isn’t new. Of course, tonight will be different. Tonight I’ll be the prey.

Copyright  © Alexandra Christian, 2014; All Rights Reserved, Ellora’s Cave Publishing, Inc.

Ok, so now that I’ve tempted you with an excerpt, I better tell you where you can find this jewel.  You can click the image above or go to http://www.ellorascave.com/gentlemen-prefer-blondes.html to download in any of your favorite eBook formats.  I’ve also put together a little muse board on Pinterest if you’re interested.  It has pics, music, recipes and little excerpts from the story:  http://www.pinterest.com/lexxxchristian/gentlemen-prefer-blondes/ .  And speaking of social media– I’ve done a little update page that has all of my links so you can stalk me better.  If you aren’t following me on Twitter, Facebook, etc– you’re missing out.  I’m way funnier on Twitter at 2am.  Just sayin’…

 

Writing a Sex Scene to Remember

I’m sure it’s a huge surprise to all of you, my dearest readers, but I write romance novels. 

I know, usually on here I’m talking about a television show or #BenedictCumberbatch ‘s thighs, but today I decided to be different and actually talk about my process.  This came to mind earlier in the week when I was trying to write a sex scene and failing miserably.  It wasn’t that I didn’t want to write it, I just felt like I was retreading the same soil over and over.  I mean, how many times can you write “put tab A into slot B”?  Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.  In case you didn’t know– this is a SERIOUS handicap for an author of erotic romance. 

So how can you make your sex scenes properly smoldering?  I’ve compiled a short list—

1.  The sex must be essential to moving the plot forward.  The difference between a romance novel and any other sort of book is that the center of the plot hinges on the relationship between your protagonists.  External factors must contribute to the growth of their relationship.  Sex is one of those external factors.  Think about it this way– compare Titanic with Debbie Does Dallas.  In Titanic, when Jack and Rose are gettin’ busy in the car, it’s sealing their relationship and essentially setting us all up for a good cry when Jack dies at the end (sorry… spoilers for all you people that have been living under a rock for the last 15 years).  That relationship changes Rose’s life by giving her the strength to follow her dreams.  In Debbie Does Dallas, there is no relationship.  The main characters’ impetus for having sex is well… to drive them toward the next sex scene.  Remember, if you want to write a memorable sex scene, go for Titanic, not Debbie Does Dallas.  There has to be something at stake.

2.  Vocabulary.  In my sex scenes, I tend to have a lot of inner dialogue from my POV character.  It’s not all about describing the act itself, though that’s part of it.  Taking a cue from Anais Nin, I always find that using decadent language sparingly adds some heat without having to say a lot.  No purple prose, mind you, but words and phrases that tumble from the tongue.  I always have the gravelly baritone of my muse reading aloud in my ear as I write.  If it doesn’t sound good to my ear, I rephrase. 

3.  Coarse language should be used sparingly.  Consider the mood you’re wanting to project.  You want your readers to be titillated, enticed and wishing that they were the characters in the story having this magnificent experience.  At no time have I ever wanted my lover to say “show me your dripping wet love hole.”  Eeeewwwww…. Sex and love is beautiful, not gross.  No gaping maws of love or meat daggers, please. 

4.  Don’t make the mistake of thinking that erotica is the same thing as pornography.  They can have the same affect, but they are NOT the same thing.  So here’s the Jeff Foxworthy portion of the blog post. Presenting: You might be pornography…

*  If “butt blasting” is in the title of your story, you might be pornography.

* If your characters’ names are Daddy, Mom, or First Cousin, you might be pornography.

*  If your book has a woman in a leash sucking a riding crop on the cover, you might be pornography.

*  If your heroine is pursued, captured and ravaged by a dinosaur, you might be pornography.

Just some food for thought, kids!  Happy writing!

Guest Post: How to Bring the Drama, or, I Don’t Know What I’m Doing by Elise Hepner

Click ME to BUY Furious Temptation!

Click ME to BUY Furious Temptation!

Hey kids!  Today I welcome an amazing author, Elise Hepner, to the blog today.  She’s talkin’ ’bout drama– one of my personal favorite subjects– AND telling us all about her new release, Furious Temptation.

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So, sometimes I have these days—these days where I’m watching some drama play out on my TV and wondering how in the hell someone made that believable. Because in the era of Reality TV, Twilight angst, and NA Billionaire Bonkfests with extra emotional vulnerability and a side of trauma, I never know how much drama to bring to the table or whether it’s going to be too much because it’s so cheesy I could put it in a fondue pot and call it dinner. How does an author toe the line or is there even a line anymore? How does an author paint drama on so thick, but it doesn’t feel like it’s too much, like it’s fake?

These are the questions constantly spiraling through my head.

Do my hero’s and heroine’s have issues, of course, what would be a good backstory without a little bit of pain. But somewhere along the writing road someone decided that it wasn’t good enough to come from a broken home with commitment issues now it’s a drama free for all where emotional wounds are flung around like paintballs. Who’s got the bigger therapist bills is the question of the year. And I don’t think I’m ready to play in that league—at least not while making it believable and not laughter worthy.

So what hope is there for me when alphaholes push the envelope and heroine’s cry every five paragraphs ripping off their emotional bandages to let their pain bleed off the page?

I’ll be over here with my whips, my chains, and my riding crop working out my emotional pain the old fashioned way. With not a lot of talk, but a whole lot of moaning in the dungeon, letting the subspace override reality in a nice, white blankness.

Let me know if you’d like to join the movement. Billionaires need not apply.

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Blurb from Furious Temptation by Elise Hepner

For millennia Megaera, a Fury, has functioned as Hades right hand by passing judgment on demons who break the sacred laws. Stalwart in her  moral compass, but harboring a curse triggered by rage, she walks a thin line between perfection and destruction. But when she digs into a case  uncovering a string of demon rapes, she incites a war with Mount Olympus that could ripple chaos throughout the ages.

Omen Cole was demon made during the Civil War after repeated torture at the hands of his enemies.  Sentenced to an eternity as watchdog over  his emotionally frail, once human ex-wife, he’s haunted that he couldn’t save her from a brutal assault.

    Now it’s happened again. And Megaera needs his testimony. Omen will sell his body—and anything else—to avenge his fragile ex-wife. If that means  an alliance with Megaera, he’ll make it the most memorable of their eternity.

         About Elise….

Elise Hepner lives with her husband and two eccentric cats in Maryland. She spends the majority of her free time in her basement office concocting smutty characters and sinful situations that leaves readers satisfied. When not writing, she researches everything from automatons in the 18th century to gladiatorial rules in Ancient Rome. She prides herself on being an avid information hound as well as a blog reading addict–which is her favorite way to procrastinate. Her previous publications include books and stories with Entangled, Excessica, Xcite, Ellora’s Cave, Secret Cravings Publishing and Cleis Press.

         Author and Buy Links (the best part!)…

Buy it at Secret Cravings!  http://store.secretcravingspublishing.com/bmz_cache/8/8e8570dd0a232f3c9bc2ac10dce9bde8.image.366×550.jpg

Website: http://www.elisehepner.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/EHepner

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Elise-Hepner-Writing/311925106401