Thursday, September 26, 2013

Why she writes HOT!

Hi Friends!

It's been a while, eh?  I am bogged and buried in renovation, quite near the legless lizards in the dunes habitat of LAX.  B-o-r-i-n-g.

Let's move on to something sexy.

Have some Melodie Campbell!  She's one of my Canadian writing buddies. British subjects have such a way with words.  Has a man ever said to you what one of her suitors said to her?

WHY I WRITE HOT – and Why Others Read It
By Melodie Campbell
I write comedies – screwball, caper, fantasy, you name it.  The laugh gene is part of me and always will be.  But lately, I find my fiction has gotten hotter.  
Why?  Why now, after more than 20 years of writing fiction, would I be changing my style to incorporate breathless scenes of sexual passion along with the fast action I am known for?
The shocking answer came to me, when I posted this recently on my Facebook Author page:
Readers often ask if any parts of my novels are based on real life. Not really. But occasionally I will draw from the past. This dialogue, from my current work in progress ROWENA AND THE VIKING WARLORD, was once spoken to me by a man. Lars says it to Rowena:

     "It is odd,” he said. The look in his eyes was something almost religious. “Most times when I look at you, my body throbs to lust. But other times, you are so beautiful, it takes my breath away. I see you as a thing of splendour, too precious for any man to touch. It calms me just to feast my eyes on you.”
     My voice caught in my throat. This was the most stunning thing a man had ever said to me.
My shock: In writing that fiction passage, I was reliving the past.
Youth is gorgeous.  I can still remember times when I would walk into a room and all male eyes would turn to me. Times when the air around me was electric with attraction.
And even more excruciating – those few times when a man would do anything, say anything, lie, beg…to (how do I say this gracefully) satisfy his overwhelming want of me.
That doesn’t happen anymore, at least not with anything like that intensity.  But I remember it still.  Wistfully.

There is an old adage: Writers live twice. Whether unconsciously, as I did here, or with deliberation, writers sometimes pull from their pasts to move their imagined plots forward.  
I discovered today that when I write hot scenes, I am reliving the way a man wanted me.  The power of it.  The utter joy from it.  The feeling of life teetering to the point of no return, and nothing else being more important than that moment.
So I’ve come to this conclusion: Common thought is that women read hot romance/suspense books to experience the ideal romance or carnal encounter they never had.  Maybe so, but that isn’t all.  I think many women read them to relive the giddy sexual power they themselves once had over men. That power is fleeting, as we all know. 
Certainly, my books reflect this.  Rowena experiences many of the things I once did.  I write in first person, so I invite you to slip into her skin, and experience what she does.
Relive that sexual passion.
AUTHOR’S QUESTION: What about it, men?  Do male writers and readers see their past selves on the printed page?  Do you relive your sexual past in the books you write? 
Melodie Campbell achieved a personal best this year when Library Journal compared her to Janet Evanovich.  She has over 200 publications, including 100 comedy credits, 40 short stories, and 5 novels. She has won 6 awards for fiction and is the Executive Director of Crime Writers of Canada. 
ROWENA THROUGH THE WALL, book 1 in the Land’s End series, ON SALE for 99 cents until Sept 30!
ROWENA AND THE DARK LORD, book 2 in the Land’s End series, is NOW AVAILABLE

Friday, August 16, 2013

Sexy Amazon Promos

Billie Johnson said I should post on what it's been like to ramp up for my 50 online reviews.  But first-- don't you want to hear about my day?

It SUCKED!  First, I searched for kitchen cabinets in the OC.  Look at the guy who waited on me in the warehouse.

Then, I nearly got creamed on the #405 North.  There was an accident right in front of me. I braked till my foot went through the floorboard, and all those callouses got smoothed off my heel.  

An hour later, as I neared LAX, my front right tire blew.  Some heroes from AAA rescued me.  I thanked them, waved a jaunty good-bye, and went nowhere.  Over and over, the van fired up, but when I shifted into gear, the engine died.  Off to visit the Pep Boys on the back of a flat-bed truck.

My poor, noble Hobart.  My buddy, my road trip prairie schooner.  My schlepper of dogs, kids, au pairs, cats in crates, from Chicago to Omaha, to Gutenberg, to Denver, to Reno, to Vegas, to LA and back-- so many times.  Hobart has always been there for me.

Manny, Mo and Jack quoted $700+.  Holy Cow, that wasn't going to happen.  Got the bill down to $265 and felt smug.  Later, I discovered my Vuarnets gone from the glove box.  Fooey.


OK, so Billie Johnson told me at the PSWA Conference that 50 reviews on Amazon kick in a whole new alorithm.  Amazon promotes you more.

I'm at 46 reviews the book is bigger and it does a little curtsy.  Can't wait to see what it does at 50 reviews-- maybe a little Irish jig, a tip of the hat.  At 60 reviews, it might do a slow strip and a pole dance.  Who knows?

Before I started my push to get 50 reviews, I had  23.  Over the past six weeks, I have received 23 more reviews by being a pus-boil pain in the ass to anyone I know who has bought my book.  I've also been posting on FB in a fever, like a pigeon tapping a lever for a food pellet in a Maslow Box, 3X a day. Chris Swinney, my media coach, says this works.

I'm having fun on Facebook.  The happiest surprise is that some people buy the book just to review it for me.  Including people I never knew in high school.

Let's face it-- they weren't my friends back in the day.  They towered above timid, little, bookish Ugly Betty me.  But now-- they seem to like my book and me.  Who would have guessed, as I cowered at my locker in my undershirt, changing for gym in 7th grade.  Everyone had a training bra but me.  My no-nonsense, German mom was unswayed by my begging and tears.  "You vhill get a bra vhen you neet one."

Just goes to show-- you live long enough (you need a bra), everything ends up OK and you need only 4 more reviews.

Marta Chausée



Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Naughty, Naughty!

     Is that a broadsword on your belt, or are you just glad to see me?

“Hot and hilarious!”
“A fantastical tour de force”
“The Princess Bride with Sex” 

     My guest today is fellow Posse member, Melodie Campbell.  Let me tell you about The Posse.  We belong to Sunny Frazier, acquisitions editor for Oak Tree Press.  Sunny told us she was putting us together to be of support to one another.  
     Like all great manipulators, Sunny told us she had positive intentions for us-- we'd have each others' backs, we'd learn online blog etiquette, yadda, yadda, yadda.  Only NOW does she tell us, she organized us as part of her vast fan base.  I feel so used.
     But enough about Sunny and me-- here's a hot little number, Melodie Campbell, and her hot new little number, Rowena and the Sexual Revolution.  No wait... that's not right... Rowena and the Dark Lord.

Why do I want to read Rowena and the Dark Lord?
Can I whet your appetite with this?  Welcome to Land’s End, where the men are real men, the women are scarce, and the sex is…well…pistol hot. But that’s only part of the book. Honest. 

Lordy, lordy, did someone turn up the heat in this room?  What made you go there?
I’m a former comedy writer, so I set out to write a rollicking adventure series with lots of funny moments based on the premise of “Girl out of Time.” Take a modern woman, put her back with medieval warriors, and see how she manages to survive in a primitive world using modern wiles.
Even though I write comic fantasy, I try to make it as realistic as possible. So what happens when a medieval earl sells his soul to become the most powerful mage in the land? The woman he wants is powerless to resist him, of course, and dammit, he isn’t going to settle for dot dot dot…
And you know what? A girl from modern day Scottsdale, Arizona may just not mind that kind of attention. You gotta admit, it beats endless E-Harmony first dates.

Don't even mention E-Harmony to me.  A friend of mine went on, and they could not match her with one single person!  This is an attractive blonde, with a reed slender frame-- a writer and a commercial artist. Perhaps the creative types are intimidating.  I'm liking Rowena and her world better than dating in 2013.
Rowena Through the Wall, first in the series, was the # 1 time travel on in Feb. 2013. Reviewers have called this series “Game of Thrones Lite.” It's pretty darn hot, too, if I say so myself...

Why don't you lay an excerpt from book 2, just released, ROWENA AND THE DARK LORD on us?  Isn't that what you came for?
Well, yes!  Filled with brutal, sword-swinging danger, yet sexy and funny, I hope you’ll like the Land’s End series.

Cedric moved to the window with startling speed, eyes sweeping the land for riders. “I don’t blame you for this. I hardly blame him. You are too much a temptation. I need to get you back to Huel.”
He spun back, eyes on me again. I cried out from the pain of it and I felt his answering howl, as the draw shook him where he stood.
“Damn the gods! How can I hold my powers at bay with you so close—“
He was across the room in a second, down on the floor over me, gathering me to him. The pain gave way to unbelievable release—not joy, oh no, never joy—but like a cage of pain being ripped away. I didn’t try to resist it. No, I didn’t resist his hand in my hair, his lips on my throat moving down and down. Already, my legs were moving apart, betraying the thoughtless, helpless creature I was becoming.
His mouth moved down further and I let him, dear God, I welcomed it, his mouth on my skin, knowing me, claiming me, and then…
I jerked and cried out when he entered me. He roared like a lion, pulled back, then burst forward again, and I grabbed his tunic hard and pulled. The cloth ripped in my hands, and I heard him laugh like a demon. His face came down on mine, and we were drowning, fighting for air, and I let go—gave in to the madness, and the waves roared, the room pitched, and I was one with something greater than human—
The room was still now. I opened my eyes. Cedric was sitting cross-legged beside me on the floor with concern on his face. Concern?
“I lost you for a time there,” he said. “How are you feeling?”
This was an old Cedric—a Cedric from before the magic had ruled him. I saw an anxious boy there for a moment, and it confused me. I swallowed hard. The last thing I remembered was being lifted into the night sky. What happened just before that?

Whoa, Nelly!  Somebody hand me my smelling salts... that was too good, Melodie, too deliciously good!  But I liked it.  ;)
I'm so glad.

Lay some bragging on us, Melodie.  When it comes the things you write, you wear more hats than my Aunt Hildie.  
I achieved a personal best this year when Library Journal compared me to Janet Evanovich.  I have over 200 publications, including 100 comedy credits, 40 short stories, and 4 novels. I have won 6 awards for fiction.  
Enter for a $50 Amazon gift certificate and 15 book Giveaway!  Free!  Deadline May 10
ROWENA AND THE DARK LORD, book 2 in the Land’s End series, is NOW AVAILABLE! Buy Link: 
And the one that started it all: ROWENA THROUGH THE WALL, book 1 in the Land’s End series

Melodie Campbell
"Impossible not to laugh" Library Journal review of THE GODDAUGHTER

Thanks for dropping in, Melodie. You have a lot to brag about-- but I have to think about that later.  Right now I need a cold shower.
Thanks for having Rowena and me, in a manner of speaking.  Bye!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The problem with Vegas is...

... what happens there stays there.  I have nothing to write.

blurry but beautiful
I went there with a 40-year old Vegas virgin.  It's always fun to see everything through the eyes of a newbie.

When I was twenty-two, my German great auntie, Anni, came to visit my parents.  She had superhuman energy and wore my parents ragged.  They begged me to step in and DO SOMETHING with Tante Anni.  OK, so on my days off, I took Tante Anni to Knott's Berry Farm and to Disneyland.

OMG-- that wiry little Kraut had more energy than a barrel of meth addicts.  She joined me on every roller coaster, flume ride, rocket ship and teacup ride.  I was ready to puke, and she was ready to do it all again.  It was almost like that this past week, when I was the dowager chaperone to my lovely friend, Katie.
again, blurry but beautiful
First off, never go anywhere with someone eleven years younger, six inches taller and forty pounds lighter than yourself, especially if she has a sparkling, white-toothed smile, green-blue eyes and gorgeous red hair. If you want to feel invisible, Katie's your gal.

Katie made me do things outside of myself.  She wanted to eat at the Hard Rock Cafe and Burgr and schlepp all four floors of the M&m shop.  She knew all about Hell's Kitchen and Gordon Ramsay.  She knew all about which chef won which series of shows and which chef now ruled over Steak, Gordon Ramsay's high-end restaurant in Paris, Paris.

the only guy who got near me all week and that's cause I got near him     
That's okay.  I knew all about dancing waters, the Andy Warhol exhibit in the tiny Bellagio gallery, French pastries at La Belle Madeleine and where to find the cushiest chairs at the best Starbucks (in the Planet Hollywood casino, next to the Heart Bar, in case you want to eat an internal organ as your protein energy snack).

Together we discovered the many post-modernist, ultra hip and cool pleasures of Aria.  That's where the hootchie mamas and young studs go to play.  From the top of the escalators, the basement level looks like a rat hole of Band-Aid clad, stiletto-heeled whores and muscle-bound young felons.

We were too shy to sweat to industrial techno at Chateau on Wednesday night, but we did hazard a photo with Thor and the boys on the corner of Harmon and Las Vegas Boulevard.

I demand ass cheeks like this in my next life

See?  --->

We spent the last night with Nine Fine Irishmen and, as a fun capper, I pitched my cell phone into the toilet.  If you thought I was kinda goofy and  meshuga before, you should see me without my Blackberry.  Totally insane.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Russell Brand offered to WHAT?

That's what friends have asked me.  Also, where have I been, bloggigly speaking?  I guess they actually read my blog and enjoy it.  Imagine!

So many things have happened.  I got so buried in Murder's Last Resort that I didn't post about the Hitchhiker's Guide to Starbucks.  See this guy pictured below?  He was wandering around Culver City in his burgundy colored robe with nothing underneath (I can testicle to that), checking out the scene.  I watched people watching him.  NOT.  Only in La La Land would a guy like him go completely unnoticed.

On the scene in historic Culver City

Then there was the January 28 visit to Judge Judy with my friends, the two Sues.

Sue and Sue

JJ has changed

They were both excited to visit the set, but the one Sue was out of her mind with joy.  She said it was the best day of her life.  It outstripped her wedding day and the birth of her two children (sorry, hubby and kids).  And that was even before we ran into Russell Brand, who cuddled her tight and then offered to play with her boobies.

After the first cuddle
She declined his offer (twice), but she was sorely tested. After we said our good-byes to Russell, I could have kicked myself for not giving him my business card.  One never knows when one's boobies could use a little play date.

Sue and Russell forever

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Wicked Pisser Week

Yes, that's me shamelessly showing off my baby.
Hello, my friends!

It's been wicked pisser busy since the San Gabriel Valley LitFest.  Where did this week go?  But, let's get back to SGV Litfest, just for a moment.

It's like they're the new Beatles or-- the Next Big Thing!
I wanted to mention how well oiled the LitFest machine was.  I wanted to compliment John and Ann Brantingham, Scott Creley and Elder Zamora.  I wanted to thank everyone who listened to my readings.  I wanted to compliment all the people I introduced, and tell them how much I enjoyed getting to know them better.  I wanted to thank the people who womaned the Oak Tree Press booth, and tell them I am happy to have so many new friends.  I wanted to thank all those who took photographs of me, especially the ones who made me look good.  I still want to do all those things, so here goes.  THANK YOU!
Dylan Gosland and Anders Carson

Luke Salazar, on fire!


Saturday, February 16, 2013

San Gabriel Valley Literary Zombie Fest

Note the blossoming trees.  Are we actually in Japan?

Hey!  Do you see some literary zombies come to life in West Covina in and around the Library and City Hall?  That would be us.  John Brantingham's eyes have a vague, burned-out yet happy look.  Does he even recognize me as he says Hi, nods and smiles?

T. Anders Carson-- he worked like a dawg all day yesterday (as did all the other hosts and volunteers of the LitFest).  Then he and John stayed up yakking till 4AM this morning.  No wonder they had the hollowed out eye sockets of Zombiemen today.

My report on the LitFest:  IT ROCKS!  John said it would be-- and it is-- the greatest thing since ice cream, lap dancers and jewelry.  Something for everyone in the entire family.

Yesterday, I was lucky enough to introduce a batch of talented poets, all the way up to Suzanne Lummis, who appeared as the living incarnation of fun in the Seuss tradition of the word.  You know what Dr. Seuss said-- "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how."  Suzanne knows how.  She wore the most fabulous green stuffed animal fur bolero jacket and the coup de grace were her green-tipped nails that matched both the jacket and her übercool green, patent-leather tote.  Man, I wish I had thought of all that.

The Fest is loaded with photographers, both amateur and professional.  I'm sure there are great shots of all of us at various podiums and on various stages.  I'll try to round some up for the next blog.

Today, I read a short fiction piece of mine that was published by Rind Literary Magazine and followed up with a few chapters of my newly minted book, Murder's Last Resort.  The other readers, who included Kevin Ridgeway, Dylan Gosland, Phillip Van Sant, Owen Torres and Melinda Smith KILLED! 

My literary parts are sighing with contentment.  The poetry and prose have been SMASHING.  I can't get enough of this stuff and want the festival to last for an entire week.

Lest you think I've forgotten my priorities, I must remark on the food trucks.  EXEMPLARY.

Come join us-- tomorrow's the grand finale.  I'll be introducing author Martin Lastrapes, one of my heroes of original thinking, at the Outdoor Stage at 2PM. 

I'll be reading from Murder's Last Resort on the Main Stage at 5PM, and I'll be introducing fellow Oak Tree Press authors Marja McGraw, the most organized author on earth, Morgan St. James, and Sunny Frazier-- also the Minotaur author of the popular Crispin Guest Series, Jeri Westerson.  

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

While I was gone...

In case anyone missed me (DID ANYONE MISS ME?), I've been sick.  Well, I've been many things, but sick was one of them.  I caught that galloping head cold making the rounds in L.A.  In case you missed it more than you missed me, here's a fun sneeze: 

Also, I moved from my home of over 9 years (leased it out) to parts west where I have been looking for a new place while I lead a vagrant gypsy life, down by the sea again, where the wind's like a whetted knife, à la John Masefield.

I can't seem to gain any equilibrium.  I keep cresting, getting my head just above water and then I'm down again-- not down for the count, but I seem to be playing "catchup" every day.

Look for upcoming blogs on:
1. the Hitchhiker's Guide to Starbucks
2. the visit with Judge Judy
3. what it is to get a book ready for market

You thought writing the book was the work?  Oh ha ha-- I laugh!