Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Another Champagne Title Coming!

This Champagne Rosebud, written by DC "Pat" Hardy, is a spell-binding tale about love (of course!), lives held in the balance, and learning to believe in matters of the heart. Matters which don't apply strictly to inter-personal relationships.

Medical romances are not my absolute favorite, admittedly, but when I received this submission, it knocked me out of my chair. This isn't another "day in the life of ER", but a very personal account that addresses extremely plausible internal conflicts surgeons may well face.

Laced with just the right amount of humor, laden with romance that's certain to tug at your heart, Kyle and Michelle paint a picture of hope and fullfillment amidst a backdrop of black and white realism. Not to mention our hero is so loveable you'll want to take him home and make him your own personal physician!

Look for Affairs Of The Heart on January 27, 2010.


Dr. Richards," Michelle said to the back of Kyle's well-washed scrubs, "I need to talk to you." The worn blue fabric did nothing to hide his fabulous athletic physique. Or the clench of his shoulders before he turned to face her.

Her stomach tightened. After almost five years, he could still grab her with his devil-may-care good looks. But he certainly didn't seem happy to see her.

"Well, what do you know? Michelle Benoit." Wild mahogany hair held in check by his trademark Billabong bandana, Kyle flashed a lopsided grin that didn't match the wariness in his gray eyes. "How'd you sneak under my guard?"

With a glance at her feet, he leaned toward her. "Nice shoes, by the way. Not what I'd wear to a trauma code, but you always did march to your own drummer."

A hot wave of indignation swept up Michelle's neck. "You knew it was me in there the whole time?"

"Nope. Just on my way out." He peered around her and didn't meet her accusing glare. "Those gorgeous blue eyes of yours gave you away. Excuse me."

He joined the trauma cart as it swept by and left Michelle to finish her conversation with herself. As if.

"Kyle, we're scheduled to meet today."

He held the elevator doors open as his colleagues maneuvered the patient inside. "Plans change, Michelle, as you know." His pointed look held heavy insinuation, sharp with reflections of the past.

"But I have to wonder," he continued, "what I did to deserve the attention of the great Dr. Benoit." He swung inside the elevator next to the gurney. "The promising surgeon who abandoned her residency for a plush research job." His eyes narrowed as he cocked his head. "Tell me, Doctor. Is it true..."

The elevator doors slid between them.

"...that doctors who can't, do research?"

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Book Brag II

Another book to brag about!

This time, it's an unforgettable Champagne Rosebud written by author Judy Rogers. (For those who may not be aware, Champagne is one of The Wild Rose Press's contemporary lines.)

If you're looking for a book that has an upbeat feel but really knows how to touch your heart, What Are Friends For? is at the top of my list.

With a hero who's so sweet and romantic he'll make your heart melt, and an adorable heroine who just can't seem to get it right, the story will warm you up on these chilly fall nights.

I'm so very excited to be able to announce this forthcoming release. Look for What Are Friends For? on January 20, 2010. I'm sure you'll enjoy it as much as I do.

Dooley couldn’t be falling in love with her; he’d known her all his life. Although, he couldn’t remember a time when he’d been so consumed by erotic fantasies. Even the raging hormones of his teen years hadn’t tied him in as many knots. If love felt like this, it was hell. He had married Cass to give her protection and support until the baby came, not to complicate their lives.

Suddenly, two hands began to massage the muscles just below his shoulder blades. Cass’s breath whispered across his neck, “I’m sorry. I know this is important to you. I’ll ask Robert to change the dates.”

He didn’t dare turn around. He could smell the familiar scent of her lemon shampoo. Her fingers prodded all the right places. In order to massage the top of his shoulders, she had moved close enough for him to feel the tips of her breasts against his back. His brain short-circuited under the sensory overload. Don’t turn around! Don’t turn around! The blood surging behind his eardrums drowned out the voice of reason.

With a groan, he turned to face her, his left arm slipping around her waist, pulling her against him. His right hand swept behind her head and pulled her face forward until his lips met hers. As kisses went, it wasn’t particularly gentle. He told himself to back off, to stay in control, but his overwrought system didn’t buy it. Hungry, needy, his lips moved over hers, nibbling at her bottom lip, tugging until her lips parted, and he deftly used his tongue, teasing her, willing her to respond.

At first she stood very still. He could feel the tension in her hands as they lay passively against his chest. Her fingers flexed, and his body stiffened, ready for her to push him away.
Instead, she sighed, and her arms slid up around his neck. “This isn’t good,” she whispered against his lips.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Things That Make My Email Happy

Waking up to find a resubmission an author has put a lot of time and energy into, that really shines, is almost better than my morning cup of coffee. Authors who take the time, who step back away from the attachment to their story and are willing to look at it from an objective angle are gems. We editors know it isn't easy to hear the word, "But..." It isn't necessarily easy for us to say that word either. We know the likelihood of how it will be received.

The author who can move past the gut-reaction of, "No way. It's right this way." is the author who wants to grow and has the best opportunity at seeing career goals met.

This morning, I had an even more pleasant experience than revised resubmissions. Every once in a while, I'll have a story come our way that is incredible in one fashion or another, but there's an aspect of it I can't contract. Several months ago, I ran into this and spent several long hours in discussion with the author. To my delight, this morning, after weeks of consideration, the author decided to go with my requested needs.

It's a treat to run into this email before coffee. Made my day, I tell you.

On another note, in the near future I should have two more titles to present to you. Waiting on our wonderful artists to finalize covers. Both are books that I read before coffee.

Hm. I believe there might be a pattern there.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Revisions and Resubmissions

I'm pretty generous with offering resubmissions to authors when I feel a there's merit in a story. However, I must say it never fails to concern me when I do reject a manuscript, offer a resubmission, and the manuscript comes back within 48 hours.

I'm sure there are those of you who can whip out edits and corrections in the blink of an eye. Particularly those who have the ability to be a full-time author day in and day out. That said, I have yet to see a resub turned around so quickly that has met approval.

Please folks, if you're given the opportunity to resubmit, take the time to do it right. Don't race to get it done unless you're told "I need this in x amount of time." In my case, you have 90 days to send it back to me directly.

Take the time to sit down with a trusted critique partner and compare the editor or agent's reponse to what's in front of you. See if your modifications have met the request.

Don't rush. You get one chance to resubmit as a general rule. Don't let a good project miss the proverbial boat because you were excited. Make sure it is as correct as you possibly can get it. Then send it back to us.

And if you are one of those miracle-working authors who can do good, solid edits in a very short time. You might stretch out your turn around time to a week so no one perceives it was rushed.

Just my two cents!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Book Brag

One of the things I feel is extremely important to my role as an editor with The Wild Rose Press -- and for that matter any editor -- is believing, and really loving, the books that we agree to contract. Lots of books can fit 'rules', and just not strike that chord of "Wow" within an editor. Those that do make editing enjoyable.

As such, I was extremely excited to find a first person narrative that I couldn't put down after it landed on my desk a few months ago. I'm not usually a first-person kinda gal. But Sleeping With the Lights On caught me up and as it went along I was very impressed with our heroine's journey. She's mature, but not by any means 'old'. She's saucy too, and her humor caught me off guard in many places. And our hero -- yummy!

Well, the weeks passed, slowly turned into months, and finally, Sleeping With the Lights On has a release date: June 25, 2010.

“When do you go back to Vegas?”

He hesitated. “In a day or two.”
“You sound rather vague.” And still elusive. What could be the big secret about this charity gig he couldn’t divulge?

“I have a few more things to find out. I’ll be out of here as soon as I get all my questions answered. It’s complicated.”

“Carson, honestly, how complicated can a gig—”

Pulling me around, we stopped, facing each other. My head said run like hell, but my legs wouldn’t respond. Mushy from wine or the result of Carson and moonlight. I couldn’t be sure which.

“Have lunch with me tomorrow, darlin’.” His fingers slipped from mine to gingerly brush along my forearm. The moonlight caught in his eyes. “Another hour of your time with a long lost friend?”

“Yes.” My voice went all husky and come-hither. I wanted to kick myself for being so easy.

“Good.” Grasping my hand again, he led me toward the door. “What’s the address of your office?”

I struggled to shake off the moon shadows and to remember where I worked. Once inside the building, I took a scrap of paper from my purse and wrote the address.

“I’ll walk you to your door and say goodnight,” he said, tucking the scrap of paper in his pocket. “Unless you want to have me in for a goodnight drink.” I didn’t answer. If he’d only known the extent of my uncertainty at that moment, a little persistence might have made me cave.

“Okay, then—” His mouth gaped.

I followed his bewildered look to my apartment door.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Positive Attitudes

All too often writers get caught in the frustration of the work writing a novel requires. We start a project with enthusiasm, words are just flowing like mad. The beginning blows test-readers out of the water; the planned ending will make them cry tears of joy. The climax will keep them on the edge of the seat -- and so forth. But somewhere in the middle of linking all that into a book, frustration hits. Negativity creeps into minds. "Why am I doing this? I just got four rejections today. Why bother? My words aren't right. I've written the same phrase five times in six chapters..." on and on.

So what's a writer do to maintain a positive attitude and finish the book? Here's a few tips:

a. Don't get caught up in the need to be perfect. Tell yourself its okay to use the same five phrases repeatedly. Just get the words out -- polishing it is what the revisions process is for.

b. If you're stuck at a scene, a chapter, a transition and the words just won't come, skip it. Go to the next place the words are flowing. You can go back in and fill in the details at a later date.

c. If you're frustrated because you blocked out a certain time of the day to write, and by the time life settles down on that day you only have thirty minutes -- use those thirty minutes for writing. It may not be a four hour accomplishment but it is something. Every little word is progress.

d. If you're frustrated because you've just read your critique partner's latest MIS and it wow'd you, and you don't feel you write as good as he/she does -- remind yourself you don't need to write as good as another author. Authors possess individual voices. You aren't writing to be the next Nora Roberts. You're writing to be the first YOU. Devote time and attention to your project, and your project might just wow your critique partner too. An incomplete work can't wow anyone.

e. If you're frustrated because you're overwhelmed -- take a deep breath. You don't need to iron out why your secondary character's eye twitches when he lies. You can justify it later. Just accept that it does. Look at one instance of the situation at a time. Don't attempt to tackle it all at once. That's just asking for more stress. Focus on the things you can find an immediate resolution to first, and then as you tick off layers the stress will disipate.

That's just a few suggestions -- there's a lot more you can discover through asking other authors how they get through slumps. But in the end, remember, above all -- negativity leads to more negativity. If you create reasons for why you can overcome hurdles, or create reasons to excuse what you perceive as flaws, you will find the positive energy to keep muddling through. Positive energy fuels positive energy. Always, always find a way to look at your writing circumstaces as positive.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Busy August

August has hardly begun, and I've been working like a fiend. I've seen some very nice submissions lately and requested two full manuscripts this week, as well as a full rosette.

Additionally two books have moved on to final stages of production, and I'll be excited to update my authors' coming soon stuff. When I have dates, I'll share a little information on the titles.

Speaking of -- there's a lot of great titles coming out this fall at The Wild Rose Press. I encourage everyone to check out our coming soon area and review the novels. If you're an author, please considering joining us in the Garden. Submissions are always open, and we're all excited about new work and new voices.

What catches my personal attention? Sexual tension from the get go. Not necessarily steam and physical interaction, but the set up and tension. Knowing that when these two finally cross that bridge and embrace the coming romance, the sparks are going to fly grabs me more than anything. This goes for both the genres I work in.


Champagne -- I think it is more difficult in a contemporary setting to create a truely tortured hero. This is often more strong in historical and paranormal (usually because of the trend toward violent circumstances -- battle and death mainly) Therefore, when I discover them it's an exceptional treat. I also enjoy the beta hero a great deal. Heroinewise, I really like ladies who hold unique professions, and the profession influences the story. For instance: (and this is completely made up) a heroine who plays a bodyguard and has to look out for a physically powerful man would be really entertaining. Especially if she were petite.

Historical -- Aside from the given fact that I want to get lost in the history and experience it as if I were there, for a historical hero I am all about the alpha male. But... Here I like my alphas to have a weakness or soft spot that isn't commonly known. Can't resist pastries? Can't ride off to battle without his favorite hunting...mouse? Something small and almost obscure that softens his alpha nature. Heroines -- definitely strong women. But not so strong that they are always, always, combative with the hero. My favorite eras -- the older the better. I prefer the realism of eras where men and women had to work to survive, not necessarily the life of the wealthy elite.

While those are things that leap out at me -- in the end, a good story is a good story. That's what matters.

So keep up the writing!


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Shift In Responsibilities

Well, I'm happy to announce that as of today I will also be editing in The Wild Rose Press' historical lines.

I will be floating between the specific lines there, and working on overflow submissions, but this gives me an opportunity to return to where romance began for me, many years ago.

As a reader, I was always enchanted with historicals. Johanna Lindsey was, is, and shall always remain one of my earliest influences. Julie Garwood plays an equally important role.

While contemporary romances deal with the here and now and give us the hope that fantasy can become reality, a good historical transports the reader back in time. For however long our nose is in the book, we exist in that world.

We live in castles, we attend formal balls, we hear cannonade on the hillside as North confronts South, we smell the firepits on an open range. We fall in love with the Scottish brogue. We swoon over the Regency rake. We love and hate the arrogant knight. And the scenery... no longer do we face the concrete monstrosities that define todays large cities.

It's a different world.

Anyway! I look forward to this new endeavor!

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Hello All!

I made my debut with The Wild Rose Press in early 2009. I did a little cross-genre work in the Hummingbird Department, and then shifted full time to the Champagne Rose Line. For those who are not familiar with the specific line, this is one of our Contemporary lines.

I love Contemporaries. There's a certain kind of comfort in knowing any one of these heroes and heroines could be our neighbors, the teller at the bank, the gardener. With historicals, (although I'm equally addicted to good historicals) the chances of running into the particular characters are nill -- unless you've somehow chanced upon a time-travel machine. In which case, let me know--I have some questions to ask Trajan. In paranormals, there's a draw for the fantasy, and the What if? question, but the chances of encountering an immortal being, magical powers, and shape-shifting creatures are rare. Even with the most well-written stories, there's a disconnect in any other genre. When we close the book, there's a part of us that knows it can't happen to us.

In contemporaries, it can.

I chose to go into editing because I genuinely enjoy watching authors grow and develop their craft. Sending a contract to a first-time author is equally as exciting for me as it is for the author. Assiting these talented individuals in getting published is something I find extremly rewarding. While not everyone recieves an acceptance letter for the first book they write, being able to offer constructive remarks in a rejection letter allows me to pass on my knowledge, thus returning to new authors what I received when I first entered the world of writing.

In this blog I hope to be able to do more of that. While this is not the appropriate place to discuss your specific manuscripts, I'll share my insight and if questions arise, will do my best to answer all I can.