Guest Blog: TD Hassett

I had a great time at Allie Ritch’s blog site talking about how I got my inspiration for the character of Thomas in Isabel’s Awakening. Stop by.

Allie Ritch, author

Please welcome author TD Hassett, who is here to share her book, Isabel’s Awakening. Take it away, TD.

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TD Hassett: I wanted to write a classic fairy tale but my daydreams of rock stars in hot leather pants dripping with tattoos and piercings kept distracting me. After about two weeks I gave in and started writing a sweet and naughty story. My hero was an easy character — I just merged a young version of Jon Bon Jovi with a young version of Sting and voila, Thomas Becket flashed across the page.

But who to pair him with? What woman would be able to break through his defenses and steal his heart? After a lot of post it notes and glasses of wine the image of bookish Isabel Warren appeared. She was shy and studious but not a doormat. She wanted to see the world and grab opportunities as…

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The Joys of Loving Two Men

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I recently sat down to talk to one of my characters from Incubus Makes Three. I had hoped to gain some insight for a blog article to be posted to Layne Macadam’s blog and wow. She certainly got me thinking of alternative lifestyles.

Hello. My name is Shari Worth and I am in a menage relationship.

Me: Hi Shari. Tell me more about that. *leaning in pencil to paper.*

Shari: I never thought I’d be doing this kind of thing. It’s not that I was a prude before but, two hot guys?

Me: You got my attention now. Two men? *Fanning heated face wildly.*

Shari: Really, two men but one is more than just a man. I’d wanted Gabriel for years but never had the guts to make a move. The one relationship I’d had prior was pretty lackluster. Then an Incubus seduced me and sex became something addicting, delicious. I couldn’t get enough. He was the one that brought Gabriel into our bed and now none of us want to ever get out.

Me: Sounds umm, wow. *Crossing legs.*

Shari: It is now but things were a bit tense in the early days what with Dorian having to handle complications in the demon realm and risk the soul he’d coveted for so long. It was so worth it though — the way those two own my body and each others, it’s mystical every time.

Me: That does seem a bit tricky. What else can you tell me. *Voice cracking. Wiping perspiration from my forehead.*

Shari: There is so much more but I’ve got to go. The three of us have special plans and I still need to pick up the cable ties.

Me: But…

http://amzn.to/1L5CLKn

Blurb

[Ménage and More: Erotic Fantasy Ménage a Trois Romance, M/M/F, with M/M, incubus, HFN]

Dorian Black is a nine-hundred-year-old Incubus born of a Master Demon father and a mortal mother. As a spawn of the demon realm he is immortal and without a soul. He longs to earn a soul and gain his mortality in hopes of being visible to God and eventually reuniting with his mother in heaven.

The demon masters use incubi to suck out the darkness that hides within some human souls. Dorian’s work through the last millennia has been to seduce mortals and pull this darkness from them, transporting it to his masters. Once he provides enough of this human nectar he will be rewarded with a soul from the well of souls.

Dorian has been busy seducing and being seduced by local Florida con artist Gabriel. Unfortunately, he is becoming attached to the attractive grifter. He’s supposed to be sucking an entire soul from him, thereby killing the sexy young man. Meanwhile, he becomes mesmerized by the purity of Shari Worth, local veterinary assistant and do-gooder. He courts her in hopes of both distracting him from his growing feelings toward Gabriel and finding the chink in her selfless decency.

Matters quickly grow complicated in the spirit of a Shakespearean farce. Dorian discovers Shari and Gabriel are step-siblings that share a secret and forbidden love. As his feelings for both mortals grow he must decide whether to hand over Gabriel’s life in exchange for his new soul or sacrifice his long held goal to save the hearts of two humans he no longer wants to be without.

Tiffany Dawn also writes under the pen name TD Hassett.

Visit her at Naughty and Nice Romance

The Ugly Truth of Publishing & How BEST to Support Writers

Add this to what you wish you knew before you started writing.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Original Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Anurag Agnihotri Original Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Anurag Agnihotri

Well, I figure I have one more day to drunkenly torch my platform. Sad thing is I don’t drink. I am apparently this stupid when sober 😛 . Actually I am writing this as a follow up for my rant from the day before yesterday, because knowledge is power.

Writers need this. Your friends and families need this. Readers need this. The more people get how this industry works, the more everyone can start working together for everyone’s benefit.

In my book Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World, I go into a LOT more detail and I highly recommend you get a copy if you don’t have one. I spend the first chapters of the book explaining how the various forms of publishing work so you can make an educated decision.

All types of publishing have corresponding…

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Frosty Relations – Icy Hot Romance On Sale Until December 14th

With the holidays upon us there are troves of books to curl up with by the fireplace. My paranormal romantic comedy goes great with mulled wine and cinnamon cookies. Part of Decadent Publishing’s 1Night Stand line, Frosty Relations features a young college graduate facing the complicated world of adulthood and confronting the frost mage she’s had a crush on for most of her life. Add some Christmas magic and Madame Eve’s renowned matchmaking service, and we’ve got the beginnings of an icy-hot love story.

In keeping with the holiday spirit, my publisher has discounted the book to $0.99 for a limited time on Amazon and ARe (the sale ends December 14, 1015). I’m also giving away a $10 gift card. To enter, leave a comment here and drop your details in the Rafflecopter widget either at the bottom of this post, or at this landing page on my website: http://www.taraquan.com/frostyrelations

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Frosty Relations

Attorney Jack Frost never understood why holidays did weird things to people. His secretary went on vacation, his best friend ditched their annual Aspen trip, and the law firm’s stubborn human resources assistant refuses his clerical support request. What’s a warlock to do on Christmas Eve but go on a 1-Night Stand? But when an oddly familiar empath shows up as his date, this ice mage has a hard time denying the magic of the winter solstice.

Faced with an anemic employment market and financial woes, college graduate and former witch Mina Mao lands an HR assistant job at Frost and Sons. Having spent her day saving Christmas from Frost Junior’s Grinch-like behavior, she accepts the gift of Madame Eve’s service and heads over to the Castillo Capital. When her date turns out to be her childhood crush and workplace nemesis, she braces herself for the sexiest icy ride of her life.

Genre: Paranormal Romantic Comedy, Interracial/Multicultural

 

Limited Time Sale – Get it for $0.99 at Amazon or AllRomance 

 

Rafflecopter Embed Code:

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About Tara Quan

Globetrotter, lover of languages, and romance author, Tara Quan has an addiction for crafting tales with a pinch of spice and a smidgen of kink. Inspired by her travels, Tara enjoys tossing her kick-ass heroines and alpha males into exotic contemporary locales, paranormal worlds, and post-apocalyptic futures. Her characters, armed with magical powers or conventional weapons, are guaranteed a suspenseful and sensual ride, as well as their own happily ever after. Learn more at www.taraquan.com

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Goodreads | Pinterest | Amazon

 Excerpt 1 (PG) – 208 Words (see below for R)

Curious, she pulled up the accounting module and groaned when she read the current tally. “Please tell me mini-Frost already left.”

“No such luck.” Angela looked over her shoulder. “The invoices I turned in put Leo’s billings above his by a hair, so the Space Cadet is on a warpath. He’s marching down the hallway as we speak. By the way, what possessed you to let Beth take his overflow work this week?”

Mina furrowed her brows. “Why? She’s new, but I’ve heard she’s good.”

Angela rolled her eyes. “That girl spends half her day on the phone and makes careless mistakes. If she wasn’t tall, blonde, and busty, she’d never have gotten through probation. With the testosterone crowd, all she needs to do is bend at the waist and elbow-squeeze her boobs whenever she drops off a document.”

Sighing, Mina filed the information away and clung to a ray of hope. “Jack is young, male, and single. Maybe it’ll work on him, too?”

Angela snorted. “He grew up with us as babysitters, and we call him the Space Cadet for a reason. Do you know what that brat cares about more than womanizing?”

Mina shook her head.

“Proper usage of spaces, periods, apostrophes, and commas.”

 And Something a Little Hotter?

Yawning, he settled more comfortably into the seat and embraced the lulling haze. His mind wandered to the day Mina had showed up for an interview. In a departure from her current fashion slump, she’d worn a short skirt suit and glossy-black high-heeled pumps. On her way out, she’d swung by his office to drop off his major weakness—Shanghai White Rabbit Creamy Candy. He’d given her a high five and wished her luck.

That day, she’d stayed for no more than a few minutes and had left the door open. But in this foggy, slumbering vision somewhere between the dreams he could never recall and actual memory, he reached over her shoulder to shut it.

~

A mischievous grin on her face, she tilted her head back and met his gaze. “What do you want, Jack?”

He lifted his index finger and placed it over his lips. “Shh….”

Sashaying past him with feline grace, she shrugged off her jacket to reveal a crimson silk blouse. After draping the discarded garment over an office chair, she turned to face his desk. Placing her palms on the suddenly clutter-free glass, she threw him a sideways glance and motioned him over with her head.

The warmth of balmy fall allowed her to show off those smooth, toned legs. The tailored dark-green cotton hugged her ass’s subtle curve, the back slit giving him glimpses of her creamy thighs.

Coming up behind her, he closed one palm over her mouth. She remained still, her small body trembling as he nibbled her neck. He grazed his teeth over the slender slope, pausing to suck a bright-red hickey onto her snowy skin.

Hearing a muffled moan, he clamped his fingers tighter as he slid his other hand under her skirt. Finding damp heat, he yanked down her panties. The scarlet lace fell to circle her four-inch heels.

Biting her earlobe, he whispered, “Stay quiet, or everyone will know I’m fucking you.”

With one hand, he unbuckled his belt and freed his erection, his other arm still holding her in silent captivity. He kicked her legs apart and hiked up her skirt. Sliding his length between the creamy cheeks, he probed her wet opening with the tip of his cock.

~

A loud feline hiss jerked him out of the dream. Sharp claws dug into his thighs as the chair rolled back and hit the wall. The cat scampered off his lap. Rubbing his eyes, he tried to remember where he was. Once his mind regained focus, he glanced down at his crotch and noticed the very visible bulge. He could see why she’d reacted in a rather extreme fashion.

With a soft popping sound, the woman whose bare butt he’d envisioned appeared in front of him, her snowflake earrings swaying against the sides of her rosy face. At least she’d lost the Santa hat. “What the heck were you thinking about?”

The most honest answer would give her the wrong idea. After all, he wasn’t attracted to her. He’d happened to be envisioning office sex with someone who bore a remarkable resemblance to her, at the same time he got an erection, while she’d been on his lap—all unrelated events.

Smart Women Read (and write) Romance

The Appeal of Romance Novels to the Committed and Not Dim-Witted

by Tiffany Dawn

I was recently reading the resurgence of the Quilliam study on the evils of romance novel reading. I admit it, as a fan of the genre and an author; I got pissed at her conclusions.

For those of you who don’t follow research on romance novels I will summarize it. Basically a British Psychologist, Susan Quilliam, did a study that looked at 78 romance novels written between 1981 and 1996 and determined that reading those novels could lead women to be less careful about condom usage in their own relationships and gave them unrealistic relationship expectations.

Apparently many of the books written during that time period skimmed over using condoms. However, the findings concerning lack of rubbers in fiction and actual modern practices just seemed to be too much of a leap for me to accept since the novels were written prior to HIV/AIDs receiving the attention is does now. If she had selected novels written in the last ten years there would have been extensive mention of condoms and concerns about sexual health in the story line. Presumably reading about sexually responsible couples would send a more positive message about prophylactics.

However, how the hero wraps his “sword” wasn’t the only thing that got my ire up. Romance readers have long been stereotyped as lonely, desperate women with too many cats and a low IQ. But the exact opposite is a more accurate a description of the genre’s fans. Readers are more likely to be in a serious and committed relationship than non-readers and the number of romance authors with Ph.Ds. from Ivy League colleges is quite long. Just think Bly, Quinn and Gimpel for example. I have a master’s degree in clinical psychology and 72 postgraduate credits in educational psychology yet still spend my evenings writing and reading romance novels.

Does this all jive with Quilliam’s assertion that heavy readers of the romance genre may develop unrealistic or idealized notions of what a relationship should be? Her report has many unproven contentions such as, “It might mean – in the wake of such panic –judging that if romance has died then so has love, and that rather than working at her relationship she should be hitching her star to a new romance.” (Quilliam, 2000). Hmm, we are all flighty women who don’t know what a real relationship should be like? I don’t think so.

To put it simply, smart women read and write these novels, report higher levels of satisfaction in their relationships and enjoy the escape to a world where women characters are the center of the story. The modern romance novel features independent career women who refuse to settle for less. They are determined to tackle life on their own terms. It is the men who need to change in order to find happiness and fully self-actualize. And by the way, if you are still questioning how romance novels compare in terms of language use and vocabulary try pasting in a few pages of a Susan Johnson novel and comparing it to the readability score of say a Clive Cussler adventure book just for fun. I had a few minutes and did just that only to determine that both score about a 1100 Lexile level – about the 11th grade in terms of reading level. Awfully close. Perhaps the stereotype has more to do with the inclusion of sex in the storyline than any other factor.

While the naysayers will say reading romance is hazardous to your health I will keep on reading, writing and enjoying! After all, the establishment once believed that women reading much of anything could be detrimental to their ability to successfully have a baby. Holy bunk.

And just to do a brief bit of self promotion (he-he) see below to some blurbs from my books.

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Isabel’s Awakening blurb and Buy Link:

It’s been five busy years, and Newcastle-born singer/guitarist Thomas Morgan is still punishing himself for his younger brother’s death.

Thomas’s young, fashion-model wife once led her husband’s idolizing brother, Chris, into both drugs and an adulterous relationship. The loss of his brother and total destruction of his marriage destroyed Thomas. To avoid entanglements with others, even his young son, Thomas focused on promoting his music and the management of his now highly profitable record company. He thought he had everything at a safe distance, at least until Isabel literally slammed into his life.

High school teacher, Isabel Warren, finds herself falling head over heels in love with the sexy-as-sin guitarist for the rock band Becket. Soon Isabel’s orderly world of lesson plans, thesis writing, and student loan debt is competing against desire, passion, and her vulnerable heart.

Isabel struggles to navigate her newly stirred passions with her rising academic career and independent nature. As the sex sizzles, the two lovers will have to decide which parts of their dreams they will sacrifice for their fledgling relationship.

Can Thomas ever trust and love again, and will the young woman he meets ever have the confidence and strength to be with him?

http://www.amazon.com/Isabels-Awakening-ebook/dp/B00CH675ZI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1366903862&sr=8-1&keywords=isabels+awakening

tiny url version: http://tinyurl.com/p9e6j5x

Loving Link blurb:

Can two artists salvage true love out of the unexpected consequences of one night of passion?

A young tattoo artist. A seasoned rock star. Both focused on their careers. What harm can there be in giving in to their desires for just one night? They’re about to find out as their scandalous relationship sweeps the internet. Will they stand together to face the world? Or will their emotional scars tear them apart? T.D. Hassett takes you to the heights of passion in Loving Link, Book 2 of her hot, sexy series Love and Music.      

Link Jacks is done with women and determined to focus solely on music and rock-band Becket’s upcoming album. He’s been living as a marketing-prop bad-boy rock star for so long he doesn’t remember who he really is anymore. Not until he meets Madison, the emotionally guarded and theoretically off-limits younger sister of his best friend’s wife.

Madison just wants to get her fledgling tattoo career off the ground and stop relying on the generous charity of her wealthy brother-in-law to get by. She knows she should never get involved with the likes of Link but his presence is downright intoxicating. Her indiscretion will lead to Internet sex video and media frenzy. Their one wild night of passion will have scandalous repercussions and force each of them to confront their inner fears and emotional demons.

http://www.amazon.com/T.D.-Hassett/e/B00CJE2MPQ/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

 

http://www.lsbooks.com/loving-link-p845.php

Excerpt:

Madison had just finished up with her second to last client and was tired. She thanked him for trusting her to do such an involved and powerful tattoo.

“No, thank you Madison. You’ve no idea how much this means to me. It’s absolutely beautiful.” the young private explained quietly, and then surprised her by wrapping her in a big hug and kissing the side of her head. It seemed to be an impulsive gesture and it took her off guard. For perhaps the first time she understood how important body art could be to somebody, how it truly was more than just something inked. She broke free of the embrace as her boss, Lori, came into the room. Madison froze in place seeing Link Jacks standing behind her boss and scowling. The private slipped her his card and was forced to squeeze by Link, who stood with his arms crossed, practically blocking the door.

Lori interrupted the awkward silence. “Madison, you might know Link Jacks through your brother-in-law. He’s been having a dragon done over the last couple of months and I’m thinking you’re the perfect person to do some of the scale work. I’ve seen you do some mythological pieces where the coloring is almost luminescent. That would be perfect for this piece. I’ve done all the lines and a good chunk of the fill but think if you wrapped up the scales it would be American Tats Magazine worthy.” Lori stated in her no-nonsense way.

Crap, there’s really no way to just say no, especially if Lori was thinking of putting the work on display. She had one more customer left for the day and was looking forward to a quiet night back at the apartment. She and Darling would probably just order pizza and watch a movie.

Maddie’s befuddled brain flashed back to the spiel Lori had given her about no drama and she braced herself for whatever this could mean. I just need to keep my focus on the work.

“Sure, as long as Link is comfortable with me doing the work. I’ve got one more customer tonight but I’d be happy to make him an appointment,” replied Madison.

Link’s icy expression slipped. He smiled at her and gave her a little wink, suggesting her stall tactic wasn’t going to work.

“No need, I’ve switched your last appointment to someone else so that you could have time to work on this piece now,” Lori smoothly added.

So much for putting this off until a later day. Lori walked away, leaving Link and Madison alone. Great, this would be a nightmare after what had transpired between them last week. She was already anxious around him and now she’d be spending hours touching his half-naked body. How did Monet ever paint those incredible nudes with such beauty just within reach?

Madison busied herself getting out sterile gloves and new needles. She focused her head on how best to color in the scales that she recalled so clearly from running her hands up his chest and arms. His low voice startled her when he asked what to do.

“Should I take my shirt off now and lie down, or just stand here feeling stupid?” Link questioned.

“Sorry, go ahead and lie down and you know, take off your clothes. I mean shirt.” Maddie blurted out awkwardly. She finished assembling her things on the tray and turned around in time to see him pull his tight black shirt up over his head exposing a broad, well-muscled chest that her fingers ached to touch. It was going to be torture to put needle to skin, to have her hands running over his washboard abs and strong arms, yet the full sensation would be blocked by the latex of her gloves. She studied the work already done on the tattoo. It was a masterpiece in the making. She’d never seen such a large, detailed mythological piece and couldn’t stop herself from tracing the line of the dragon’s tail from the waistband of his jeans up and across his chest and over his shoulder to where it ended on his back. The dragon’s head looked across his shoulders, its eyes done so realistically you felt like the beast was watching. She could see the mix of colors and shading she’d need to complete the work. The artist in her was clamoring to get started but the woman was afraid to keep touching him lest she lose her head again. She looked up from his skin to notice his eyes had been watching her with an expression of longing. His hand was clenched tightly against the arm of the chair and she noticed the telltale bulge in his pants. Memories of him pulsing in her sent a wave of moisture to her core.

She needed to put aside the tantalizing images flashing through her head. He was just a man who could only hurt her if she let him. Isabel had shared stories about Links escapades with women while on tour. It seemed everyone in the band but Link had settled down, so they all laughed at his adventures. Now that Madison had been one of his conquests, she hated every other woman who had ever looked at him and she hated herself even more for feeling that way.

“Okay, I’ll get started but as you probably know, work around the ribs and other bony areas can get pretty painful, so let me know when you need a break. Any questions?” Maddie was proud of how calm her voice was despite the rolling pit of emotions swirling around her belly.

“No questions. Baby, I’m ready for whatever you want to do to my body; bring it on.” Link answered with a cocky smile.

Damn him, he had to make this extra difficult. She’d made a mistake in what she did with him; she’d just been too curious a cat and she’d gotten her heart involved. But there was no way she would put that tail out there again for him to play with. Maddie had seen what heartbreak did to her mother and she knew better than to get involved with anyone who could do that kind of damage to her. Besides if Isabel ever found out what she’d gotten up to with Link she’d probably lecture her to death. And Thomas would probably kill Link; after all he had become quite the protective big brother to her after he and Isabel met.

Madison needed to focus on the task at hand and stop ogling him like … well, like some kind of groupie. She prepped a gun and tested the foot pedal, and then dipped her color, steadied her hand, and pressed needle to skin. The gentle vibration of the gun hummed to her as she worked a lower portion of the design over his right ribcage. She peaked across his chest, noticed another tattoo under his heart, and jabbed the needle in too hard.

 

 

Author Biography:

T.D. Hassett AKA Tiffany Dawn, grew up reading the romance greats—Jackie Collins, Julie Garwood, and Judith McNaught. She was certain that life should be like a romance novel, with lots of passion, some incredible adventures, and a guaranteed happily ever after. She attended college in New England, earning a B.A. in History and an M.S. in Clinical Psychology before changing her mind again and studying education. Currently Ms. Hassett lives in Connecticut with her very patient husband and two young children. Her rambunctious family shares their home with three crazy cats and a darling golden retriever named Delilah. Her eccentric relatives and their quest to make her feel like the only normal nut in the family tree inspire her writing.

 

Visit her at http://www.naughtyandniceromance.wordpress.com

 

 

 

The Romance Review Year End Splash

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Win prizes and play games!

While you are stopping be sure to consider my newest and naughtiest book, Incubus Makes Three.

INCUBUS MAKES THREE

Dorian, a nine hundred year old incubus, has been busy seducing and being seduced by local Florida con artist Gabriel. Unfortunately, he is becoming attached to the attractive grifter. He’s supposed to be sucking an entire soul from him, thereby killing the sexy young man. Meanwhile, he becomes mesmerized by the purity of Shari Worth, local veterinary assistant and do-gooder. He courts her in hopes of both distracting him from his growing feelings toward Gabriel and finding the chink in her selfless decency.

http://www.bookstrand.com/book/incubus-makes-three