RELEASE DAY!!! GOING DEEP is now available!

Going Deep – To the heart of the story.

Making Headlines

Brooke Hastings almost won a Pulitzer Prize for her hard-hitting reportage. Now she’s sitting on the story of a lifetime and wants to prove she’s not a one-hit-wonder. But in order to get the world to take notice, she’ll need the help of the one person she loves to hate—Brian Dalton.

Brian Dalton stumbled into celebrity when he landed a show on the Earth Channel. But the hunky marine biologist never forgot the serious, studious boy who left Mobile a decade before. Now back in Alabama, he’s looking for the quiet life he always wanted and hoping for a chance with the girl he always loved. When Brooke asks him to help expose some of the lingering effects of the Gulf oil disaster, Brian jumps at the chance to help preserve the place both call home…

All Romance ~ AmazonAppleB&NGoogle ~  Kensington Kobo

Chapter 1

“If I didn’t have Harley Cade and his ten million ways of making a girl happy on the hook, I’d cling to that man’s hull like a barnacle.”

Brooke Hastings drowned a smirk in her martini glass. Twenty years of friendship did little to lessen the shock value of Laney’s declarations. Brooke took a cautious sip. The cocktail was pinker than a My Little Pony, but the triple sec and vodka packed a punch that more than made up for the girly color.

Dragging her gaze from the former classmate-turned-television-hunk she was here to stalk, Brooke turned to face her best friend. “That man told Mrs. Wise you had your Spanish conjugation written on your thigh.”

Laney refused to be put off by something as fickle as fact. “If I’d known he’d grow up to be rich, famous, and hot as Hades, I would have let him conjugate whatever he wanted on my thigh.”

“You told your mother you’d drown yourself in the ocean if she made you invite him to your birthday party in third grade.”

The feisty redhead at her side pursed her lips and made a great show of scanning the room. “She invited him anyway.”

Revisionist history or no, Laney wasn’t one who took being thwarted lightly. Nearly twenty years had passed since that birthday party, but the sour expression on her face said the sting of her mother’s betrayal hadn’t yet faded.

Do you have Harley Cade on the hook?”

“I could,” her friend said, eying the crowded room. “I’d only have to give that line a little old tug.”

Brooke smiled. She admired Laney’s confidence, but she wished they could be having this conversation anywhere but in the middle of one of Mobile’s most popular social gatherings.

Glittering jewels and porcelain veneers shone in the light of the ancient chandeliers, adding sparkle to the mansion’s faded glory. The first floor of Putnam House, one of the ruthlessly preserved mansions that graced Mobile’s historic district, was crowded—every square inch packed with potential donors. Saints Preserve Us was the premier fundraising event for their alma mater, St. Patrick’s Academy, and one of Brooke’s mother’s pet projects. Her mother and her merry band of fundraising fiends plied their victims with Guinness, Jameson’s, and heaping helpings of flattery in hopes of getting them to write big, fat checks.

Thursday night television programming may not be what it used to be, but Brooke had a reason for being here. She wasn’t in a position to donate the scraps of cash left over after she stretched her paycheck to the max. Frankly, she wasn’t interested in whether the football team could afford new jock straps or if the Drama Club had to—insert shudder here—rentcostumes for their spring production. She wasn’t here because her mother insisted she come. No, she was trussed up in her Spanx for a reason. A motive she shared with 99.9 percent of the women in that room. She was there for Brian Dalton.

“Any Tucker sightings yet?”

The question jerked Brooke from her mini-sulk. The possibility of running into Jack Tucker was exactly what kept her miles away from the Gulf Shore’s social whirl in the last few weeks. News of Jack’s return to Mobile after his divorce had lit a spark of hope inside her. The possibility of rekindling their romance seemed to lighten the miasma of loneliness that covered her like a heavy blanket. Alone in her bed, she allowed herself to spin a fantasy of marriage and family that was not only attractive but convenient, as well. Then she ran into him at her parents’ club and her thinking shifted from possibly-maybe to never-gonna-happen.

Unfortunately, her mother had hopped onto the Jack Tucker bandwagon the minute the man crossed the city limits. Emmaline Hastings wasn’t a woman whose mind was easily changed. That meant Brooke’s best course of action had been to avoid Jack altogether. Eventually her mother would find a project more promising than the daunting task of marrying off her almost-thirty-year-old daughter.

“No. Thank goodness.”

“You used to get all twitterpated at the thought of seeing old Jack Tucker,” Laney drawled.

“And you used to spend your entire study hall plotting ways to torment Brian Dalton.”

Laney remained as impervious to criticism as she’d been in high school. It was one of her greatest charms. “He brought it on himself.”

Hard to argue that logic. Back in those days, Brian did earn a good bit of his torment. His fall from social grace started the day he displayed a clock powered by a potato for second grade show and tell. His position as class pariah was written in the stars before Brooke scored the blue ribbon at the eighth grade science fair, but he cemented it in high school. Brian Dalton was worse than a nerd. He was a nerd who thought it was cool to be arrogant and condescending to anyone he considered his intellectual inferior. This meant practically everyone.

He might have redeemed himself if he’d stuck to delivering the world’s shortest valedictory address. But then he planted a kiss on the salutatorian that shook the entire auditorium.

Brooke never forgot the way her kiss-swollen lips tingled as he whispered the Alabama fan’s mantra of “Roll, Tide, roll” into her Auburn-bound ear. Nor would she forgive him for the scalding rush of humiliation he left in his wake as he walked away.

The hell of it was, nearly a decade later, she could still taste him. Salty and sweet. The brainy boy seemed to have ocean water in his veins and coconut-scented sunscreen embedded in his pores. She pressed her glass to her bottom lip, sternly reminding herself that a kiss could not linger for ten years. No matter how much pent up passion a guy put into it.

Laney broke into her thoughts. “I always thought your mama might be convinced to give up on her dream of you marrying Jack Tucker if a bigger fish came swimming along.”

“If Brian’s the fish you’re referring to, I’ll remind you that you used to want to see him flopping on the floor gasping for breath.”

“We’ve grown up. Matured. Besides, nerds are hot these days. Didn’t anyone tell you?”

That was where Laney’s assessment went wrong. Brian’s hotness wasn’t simply a trend. It was a matter of perspective. As a teenager, he might have been quiet, bookish, but he’d always been good looking. If one could get past the annoying arrogance.

He stood in the center of the room like he’d ruled the school all along, and the sight of all the other Laney-come-latelys flocking the boy they once snubbed irked Brooke to the bone. The fact that she was the only one who saw it used to make her feel superior to the rest of the world. Now, she wondered if she’d missed out on something when she watched him walk away.

Miffed by the train of thought, Brooke turned and gave her friend the hairy eyeball. “I can’t believe you’re lusting after Brian Dalton. What’s the world coming to?”

Her friend’s chuckle was genuine. “I was talking about you, not me.”

“Me?”

“The world we once knew came to a screeching halt the day that boy kissed you.”

“It did not.”

“You might sell that to someone else, sugar, but not me. You lost all interest in Jack Tucker the minute you locked lips with the delectable Mr. Limpet.”

“Incredible,” Brooke murmured into her glass. She took a quick sip, her eyes locked on her quarry. “The movie was The Incredible Mr. Limpet.”

Laney huffed. “It could have been The Incredible Hulk for all I care.”

“How about The Incredibles?”

“As long as you’re not trying to deny he kissed you senseless and it was incredible.”

“He kissed me, it was incredible, then he left,” Brooke said flatly. “He left. Period. The end.”

“And you still think he’s incredible.” Brooke started to shake her head but Laney raised a hand to ward off further protest. “Shelbrooke Hastings, are you trying to tell me that you have absolutely no interest in spawning with Aquaman?”

“I prefer Batman. Maybe Superman. Hell, I’d even take Captain America, though I suspect he’s a prig in bed.”

Her friend barked a short laugh. “I’m betting Superman has a stick up his ass, too.”

“Yes, but he has that ice castle thingy. I always thought that looked awesome.”

Laney nodded, the corners of her mouth pulling down as she gave the argument due consideration. “Beats the hell out of a damp, musty cave.”

“Yes, but Batman has the black cape. And all the cool toys.”

“Can you imagine the vibrator Wayne Enterprises could manufacture?” Laney clutched imaginary pearls. “A Bat-brator. Exactly what every single girl needs.”

Brooke frowned and shook her head. Listening to her friend verbally fondle Brian was more than vaguely disturbing. Sure, Brian had the looks, the money, and his picture printed in People, US Magazine, and on the cover of the tabloids, but that shouldn’t make him fair game for everyone. Especially not here. This was supposed to be his home. But a star was a star, even if he was a little burned out, and everyone in the room seemed to be caught in the man’s gravitational pull.

Not many women would pass on a chance to de-pants Brian Dalton these days. If she felt like being scrupulously honest, Brooke would number herself among them. But she didn’t want to hear it from Laney. Or anyone else, for that matter. Her relationship with Brian, whatever it might have been, was always separate from everyone else in her life. Their odd friendship had been as fascinating as exploring an uncharted island—intellectually stimulating, undeniably appealing, but treacherous as high tide.

Judging by the sardonic smirk on his face, this new and improved Brian would be equally challenging. And intriguing. He was undoubtedly mouthwatering.

The cut of his jacket showcased the broad-shouldered, narrow-hipped perfection of a body that spent hours in the water. Days working in the sun threaded his brown hair with hints of gold. A minimalist flash of white teeth evoked a visceral reaction in females from eighteen to eighty. The suit screamed matinee idol rather than marine biologist. It was no wonder a bevy of elegantly dressed women flocked to him like seagulls after a saltine. Grown-up Brian might still spend his days talking about plankton and marsh grass and amoebas, but the idea that he could spend his nights with his pick of women seemed more a given than a hypothesis.

Brooke held her breath when he scanned the room, torn between wanting to step forward and the urge to shrink away from his probing gaze. Oxygen seeped from her lungs when she spotted the familiar flash of arrogance in his eyes. Curious, she dragged her attention from the knot of back-slappers that closed around him and surveyed the room, trying to see it all through his eyes.

Brian turned and bestowed a dazzling smile on the woman next to him. The kind that made normally sane women flibbertigibbety. That weapon wasn’t even turned on her, and Brooke went weak in the knees. Darting a glance at Laney to see if she’d witnessed the same phenomenon, she found her friend’s dreamy-eyed gaze turned in the opposite direction.

Pitching her voice low, she jabbed an elbow into Laney’s ribs. “Don’t you dare ditch me.”

Laney had the good grace to grimace when she was caught ogling her millionaire. “I won’t.” She tore herself from whatever crazy eye sex mojo Harley was using on her and turned back to the task at hand. Clearing her throat, she gave the bodice of her dress a surreptitious tug. “Brian Dalton. Did I mention wanting to be his barnacle?”

It was Brooke’s turn to grin. “Liar.”

Cradling her drink in both hands, Laney darted one last wistful glance at the bar area. “Okay, fine. But I’m telling you, if Mr. Cade so much as blinks you’ll be scraping me off Brian’s…hull.”

“I’m starting to think you might be hooked on Harley.” Raising her glass in a mocking toast, she smiled sweetly. “But if it makes you feel better, I still think you’re a hussy.”

Laney grinned. “Thank you.”

At that moment, Brian turned his head and their gazes locked. Her breath snagged when he took a step in her direction, but she refused to show any sign of weakness. Taking a casual sip of her drink, she rolled her shoulders back, edged one foot in front of the other, and arched her back ever-so-slightly. A trick that her mother, like any former Miss Alabama worth her salt, passed along to her daughter the moment she left the cradle.

Going Deep is book #1 in the Coastal Heat series coming to you from Lyrical Shine. Look for FLIP THIS LOVE and LOVE & ROCKETS coming in 2016!

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Monday Mayhem – Spastic edition = spastic website

Trying this again….

If any of you follow me on Twitter, you might have seen that I made the following prediction on Friday:

Maggie Wells @MaggieWells1

Will spend the weekend working on Coastal Heat #3 whilst pimping #1 & possible round of edits on #2. #writerbrain

Well, what do you know? I’m psychic. Added a chapter or so to #3 (LOVE AND ROCKETS), set up a number of posts about #1 (GOING DEEP), and copy edits on #2 (FLIP THIS LOVE) landed in my inbox Sunday afternoon. Wooohoooo!

This is it!!  GOING DEEP finally releases this week. This book has been a little over 2 years in coming. I can’t wait for it to be out in the world!

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There are going to be a lot of fun giveaways happening in the coming weeks. You ready for a sneak peek?

September giveaway – At the end of the month, I will be drawing the name of one Newsletter subscriber to win this totes adorb tote bag filled with books and goodies! I send newsletter updates 1-2 times per month (if that often) and I always include links to free/discounted books. I promise not to spam your inbox! If you are not already on my mailing list, go here to sign up.

Beach Bag giveaway

I’ll be participating in my friend Parker Kincaid‘s SOUTHERN HEAT facebook party on Tuesday the 15th! Click here to RSVP. Look for me to be hosting from 9-10PM EST. I’ll be doing a number of giveaways that night including beach-themed scents, a a blingy Razorback koozie, and prizes fans of Harlequin romances, Jane Austen and Outlander will not want to miss!

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Have you joined my street team, THE MARGARITAS? If not, you’re missing out! This week I mailed some welcome goodies to those who have signed up to receive gifts and extras. Members of The Margaritas receive advanced read copies of my books, sneak previews of upcoming releases, chances to win gift cards and other prizes, and are privy to other behind-the-scenes action.

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Today is the last day to download a free copy of SEDUCING STEVE exclusively at Amazon. Please tell your friends to grab their copies now!

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Whew!

So…what are you up to this week?

GOING-DEEP

 

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Monday Mayhem – Ennui Edition

So it’s no secret I’ve been suffering a little end of summer ennui. I’m pleased to report that I have powered through, and Saturday I managed to get chapter one of LOVE & ROCKETS (Coastal Heat #3 – October 2016) done. Now I just need to psyche myself up for chapter two.

I got my first round of edits back on FLIP THIS LOVE (Coastal Heat #2) this weekend. Also got some great feedback from my editor on the story itself. Can’t wait to share this one with you in April 2016! Right behind it will be A WILL AND A WAY (sequel to Three Little Words – coming June 2016!) so I will be deep in the writing/editing cave as the leaves start to turn.

But first, I’m planning some prizes and giveaways for the release of GOING DEEP on September 15th!

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Found this super-cute beach bag that matches the cover colors that I plan to fill with books and goodies for my newsletter subscribers (sign up now at the top of the right sidebar!).

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I also have some fun stuff for the Facebook party I’ll be participating in that evening.

So yeah, I’m hoping to gain a little momentum again as the summer starts to cool down. Give me another couple of weeks and I’ll be in full-on Fall mode. That means being football and first draft ready.

I plan on turning this ennui will be off-oui (Gilmore-ism – thank you Sookie St. James Bellville!) and getting back in the groove.

How about you? What are you looking forward to this fall?

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Monday Mayhem – Catholic guilt edition

So I think I may have to change my author picture to something like this:

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I was a complete slug this weekend. I mean, I didn’t leave my house other than to go to the Kum & Go to refill the massive mug.

Nor did I write.

What did I do? I read THE ANGEL by the fabulous Tiffany Reisz. I napped. I watched more episodes of Friday Night Lights than anyone should admit to watching in one weekend.

But somehow, I managed to make it through the entire weekend without adding a single word to my fledgling work in progress.

I did do authorly things. If you missed the Unforgettable Heroes II pre-release party on Facebook, you missed a good time. Lucky for you, you can still order your boxed set for only $0.99. It includes SPRING CHICKENS!

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AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1U1in0N
IBOOKS: http://apple.co/1NoBT8o
B&N: http://bit.ly/BNUH2
KOBO: http://bit.ly/KoboUH2

/sales pitch

I also packaged prizes to be sent out and started assembling goodies for my street team. I just didn’t put any words on paper.

That’s when the Catholic guilt kicks in. I feel bad about having so much free time and not making anything out of it.

Yes, I know sometimes I need to give it a rest. I know that reading a book or watching television can and are helpful to me as a writer/storyteller. I just have a hard time with the need to have something to show for my time. And the upcoming month is going to be action packed. UNFORGETTABLE HEROES II releases this week, SEDUCING STEVE will be going on sale September 10-14th, then GOING DEEP releases September 15th. In the midst of all that, I will be working edits on FLIP THIS LOVE and possibly A WILL AND A WAY.

So, I should have used this weekend to crank on the draft of LOVE & ROCKETS.

But I didn’t.

And I feel guilty.

Apparently not guilty enough to stop ogling Kyle Chandler, but there you have it. My confession.

Bless me readers, for I have loafed…

How about you? Are you ruled by guilt, or do you revel in guilty pleasures?

 

 

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Monday Mayhem – Mostly lazy edition

In case you missed it, I did end up doing my RWA wrap-up post on Thursday. Thanks for letting me slide on the Mayhem last week.

I spent most of last week polishing FLIP THIS LOVE (Coastal Heat #2) to get it ready to turn in to my editor. I’m pleased to report that I pressed send on Friday – one day ahead of schedule! Woo hoo!

Though it was a sprint to write it on time, I loved bringing Laney and Harley’s story to life. I hope you’ll enjoy reading it. It should be available from Kensington/Lyrical-Shine in April 2016. But don’t forget that book #1 – GOING DEEP will be out September 15, 2015.

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With this three book series plus the sequel to THREE LITTLE WORDSA WILL AND A WAY coming in June 2016, I’m going to have my hands full in the coming months. That’s why I am asking for help by forming a street team.

Street team members are a merry band of readers who help spread the word about new releases and promoting sales on back list titles. In exchange for their efforts, I provide them with advanced read copies of upcoming titles, swag (bookmarks, pins, etc.), books I’ve picked up from my fellow authors, and other prizes and gifts as my way of saying thanks. If you are interested in joining my street team, complete this form!

Other than that, I’ve done very little writerly work this weekend. Oh, I played around with my series bible (the document were I keep all the details for the Coastal Heat books) some, and I may have written a few sentences – 4 to be exact, and the gist of those were jotted on an index card while in NYC – but mostly, I relaxed and recuperated.

After the month-long writing marathon and the whirlwind that was RWA nationals, I needed it.

I took care of some chores, did a few errands (Did you know that apparently every grocery store in the metropolitan Little Rock area was closed while I was away?), napped a couple of times, cooked an actual meal, and watched multiple episodes of Friday Night Lights on Netflix.

And I don’t feel the least bit guilty about it.

Okay, that’s kind of a lie. I feel a little guilty about not getting more accomplished, and there are bits of LOVE & ROCKETS (Coastal Heat #3) floating around in my head, but…yeah.

How was your weekend?

 

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As promised…

I went to New York for 5 days to attend the Romance Writers of America national conference. Here are some highlights of my trip to NYC for RWA15.

Wednesday:

Travel was smooth as silk. After discovering that we’d be on the same flight, I hooked up with fellow writer Renee N. Kelly in Atlanta and we shared a ride into Manhattan together. I even brought Pocket Jamie along for the adventure!

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Got checked in, changed, and ready to head down to the Harlequin author Meet & Greet when who did I spy waiting for the elevator on my floor???

SUSAN ELIZABETH PHILLIPS!!!!!

I have no photo because, frankly, I was too busy trying to fangirl without actually dropping to the floor and worshiping the ground she trod upon. Those of you who know me know that I am wary of meeting my idols live and in person. I hate it when they disappoint me by being human. I’m happy to report that SEP is everything gracious and lovely. We had a nice chat on the ride down, and apparently no restraining orders were filed.

Wednesday night was the huge Readers for Life Literacy signing. Here’s my set up:

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My friend and roommate, Karen Booth was signing as well:

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Now, some of you may have noticed that there was no mention of food so far in my post. That’s because, other than a bagel at the airport, I had none. The schedule was so jam-packed, and I didn’t want to miss a thing to take time out to eat. You can bet your bippy I did once the signing was over. Back in comfy clothes, I ventured across the street to Junior’s Famous Cheesecake for fortification.

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Thursday was my busiest day.

I started out by attending some publisher spotlights and signings. Here I am with my new BFF, Lisa Kleypas.

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After offloading books and other goodies in my room, I joined my DSRA pal, Mia Kay, for a walk up to the Random House offices. There we had lunch and listened to their editorial team talk about their digital first imprints, Loveswept and Flirt. Here are some highlights from the walk up Broadway:

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Upon our return, I worked the line for the Kensington Books signing, handing out my nifty ‘How deep is too deep?’ promo buttons for GOING DEEP (September 15, 2015).

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Then, I ducked into a fabulous workshop on Conquering High Concept led by Sarah MacLean, Sophie Jordan, and Avon editor, May Chen.

After that, it was time for the Carina Press wine break, where I got to schmooze and booze with my fellow Carina authors.

The next thing I know, it’s time to slip into my party dress and head off to the Bowery district for the Kensington Books party at Duane Park jazz club. I was lucky enough to hook up with fellow Kensington authors Sharon Struth, Terri-Lynne DeFino, and Sonali Dev in the cab line.

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There were cocktail and passed hors d’oeuvers. We had a great time mixing and mingling with publisher, Steven Zacharius, and the whole Kensington team, including my acquiring editor, Martin Biro.

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Upon my return to the Marriott, Karen and I slipped into our PJs and headed downstairs for the Harlequin.com pyjama (they are Canadian, after all) party where we sugared ourselves up good before heading off to bed.

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Friday we hit the ground running with a keynote address from historical romance mega-star, Julia Quinn. After that, more spotlights and signings. Here I am with my fellow diamond, Elle James:

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And the always charming and glamorous, Olivia Gates:

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As the morning wound down, I slipped out of the conference to meet up with fellow Gilmorian and NYC native, Marla, for a fabulous lunch at Arriba, Arriba and my very first caramel frappachino.

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Back at the hotel, I slipped into a session on developing characters given the incomparable Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Copious notes were taken, but will make sense to no one but me. Then it was on to another publisher spotlight before I dashed up to the ninth floor to help set up for the Passionate Ink RWA speakeasy party:

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Sadly, I couldn’t stay long once the festivities started to heat up, because I was due to change and head for the historic Waldorf-Astoria Hotel for the Harlequin authors Black and White Ball!

There were a bunch of us in the cab line, so the doorman cut a deal with a limo driver, and nine of us arrived at the party in style!

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Once there, we drank, ate delicious desserts, then donned our dancing socks – yes, socks – and boogied the night away.

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I’m proud to report that my partner in crime and I shut that baby down!

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Saturday was tennis shoe day.

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It was also the easiest day in my schedule. I attended workshops and leadership meetings, slipped into a great seminar on dialogue led by Alyssa Day, Elizabeth Hoyt, and my other new BFF, Kristan Higgins (squee!):

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After that, the roomie and I decided it was time to slip out for a little John’s meatball pizza, and a walk in the lovely low-80s evening before dashing back to dress up one last time for the RITA and Golden Hearts awards ceremony.

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I had a few author pals who were finalists. so the cheering was loud and proud. So happy for fellow Team Megibow (kt literary) client, Tiffany Reisz. She won the RITA for best Erotic Romance for THE SAINT.

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She even let us touch her RITA. Very gently. And with great reverence.

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We shared a celebratory cocktail in the bar after the ceremonies, where I posed with my RITA. She’s a little smaller, and made of chocolate, but someday….

The following morning, I hugged my roommate extraordinaire goodbye while she stood in the FedEx line, then hooked up with my travel partner, Renee, for the trek back to JFK.

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And that, my friends, was how I spent my summer vacation. Want to share in a little of the loot from my trip to NYC? Over the next few weeks, I’ll be giving away goodies to random winners chosen from my mailing list and from my Maggie Wells Street Team.

Sign up to be a part of one or both today!

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Monday Mayhem – Frenzy!

First, let me just say:

 

 

The draft for FLIP THIS LOVE is complete, has been pre-edited, revised, and is now back with the ever-fabulous Jewels for another round of scrutiny. Which is good because this

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appeared in Friday’s edition of Publisher’s Marketplace, and my agent posted this awesome announcement on the kt literary blog.

Next up? RWA National Conference in NYC!

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Literally finished revisions Sunday, so I’ll be frantically packing for the next two nights. I can’t wait!

In the meantime, you can gaze upon this and we’ll all pretend we’re at the beach.

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I’ll be back next week with a full report!

 

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Monday Mayhem – Excuses, excuses

Please excuse Margaret from the internet today. She has been ill this week and has been using every word she could muster to make this happen:

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She hopes to be done with this first draft and back in fighting form next week, when she will tell you all about her preparations for her New York adventure and the Romance Writers of America conference. In the meantime, please enjoy the (unedited) excerpt below with my compliments.

Signed,

Epstein’s Mother

Flip This Love – a work in progress

“That’s it. Suck, sugar.”

The husky timbre of his voice sent shivers down her spine. One warm hand slid from her shoulder to her back. The tips of his fingers dug into the valley of her spine. He could nearly span her waist. Her nipples puckered when he slipped his hand into her hair. Oh, how she wished she’d worn it up. She loved the feel of him skin on skin. She almost wept with relief when he wrapped his big, broad palm around her nape. Heat seeped into the taut muscles of her neck. A thin stream of hot moisture escaped the corner of her mouth and trickled down her chin.

“Oh yeah. Suck harder.”

It wasn’t the first time he’d said those words to her, and God help her, she knew it wouldn’t be the last. She was weak. A quivering mass of happy, hurt, and oh-please-touch-me-again.

The man was right. She needed to suck it up. And hard. If Harley Cade was back to stay, she had to be on her guard. The man was as insidious as the kudzu that crept into her mother’s flower garden.

Laney pulled the spent crawfish shell from her mouth and dropped it onto the butcher paper in front of her. Fingers tangled in her hair and tugged lightly, a tiny jolt that sent a lightning bolt of white-hot desire streaking straight through her. She looked up in time to see him flash old Mrs. Hillbury a dimpling smile and commandeer the folding chair beside her.

“Evenin’, Delaney.”

 

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Monday Mayhem – Big news! Wow news!

Just in case you haven’t seen me crowing on Facebook, Twitter, and random street corners…

I HAVE AN AGENT!

Last Monday I accepted an offer of representation form my dream agent, Sara Megibow of KT Literary! I queried her in March with a pitch for Full Court Press, and within a month I had an offer! For those of you who don’t know, that is unspeakably fast for the publishing world.

So, yay! I’m beyond excited to be working with Sara and thrilled by her enthusiasm and ambition.  There could be big things happening! Wow things!

What? You still want more good news? Well, nothing is set in stone yet, but it looks like you may be seeing a sequel to Three Little Words! I submitted A Will and a Way (formerly Bossy Pants) to my editor, and they liked it! I’m just waiting for the details to be worked out.

That’s not enough excitement, you say? How about I tell you that Kensington has put Three Little Words on sale for the low, low price of…FREE!

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AmazonAppleB&NGoogle ~  Kensington Kobo

That’s right. Tell all your friends to grab their copy now, because Greg and Josie and their sexytime romps are up for grabs!

And finally: The winner of the signed ‘collector’s edition’ copies of Paramour and Inamorata is:

Arlene Hittle

Congratulations, Arlene, and thanks for commenting!

Wish you’d won them for yourself? Watch this Wednesday’s Whatcha Reading? post for another chance to win a set!

That’s all I have for now, dear friends. Well, that and this picture of a really cute boy who made me chase him all around the backyard, then graciously allowed me to feed him chips and sugar cookies for lunch (Hey, I can do that, I’m the grandma.).

KaysonChips

How was your weekend? Munch on anything yummy?

 

 

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Monday Mayhem – Submissive me

I’m kicking a couple out of the nest!

Once again, ladies and germs, I am on submission. Gird your loins.

I emailed the manuscript for Bossy Pants (sequel to Three Little Words) to my editor just minutes ago. Now, I have to polish my proposal package for Full Court Press and send it out (on request!) this week as well.

Sending fresh manuscripts out into the world is always nerve-racking. What’s an author to do while she waits? Well, there’s usually a little binge snacking, a lot of hand-wringing, multiple neurotic emails to the critique partner, and then I move on to the final solution…start something new.

Last week, I pitched a few ideas your way and you were kind enough to give me your feedback. Book one in the Hooligans series will be the next full-length manuscript I write, and I am super-excited to tackle Rory and Mary Pat’s story.

But first, I have a couple of chances to pitch/propose other works if I can pull together outlines before the deadlines. So yeah, I’m going to be scrambling for the next couple of weeks. But there are worse problems than too many opportunities, right?

How about you? Do you have multiple projects going in your life? How do you decide which ones get attention first?

 

 

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