Today on ye old blog we have fab author, Aliza Mann here to discuss writing and her latest project, a new adult paranormal romance novella called DARK HEARTS in the FALLING HARD Anthology.
Hi Aliza, thanks so much for being here on ye old blog today. It’s a real treat.
KMJ: First off can you tell us a bit about your current work, DARK HEARTS?
AM: Hi there Kwana. I’m happy to be here. Long time fan.
Dark Hearts is really a story about taking chances. The hero is a young man who believes at the start of the story at least, that he can block himself off and protect himself from being hurt. It’s a story about the vulnerability that comes with trusting and loving others.
While struggling to contain the beast within, Mitchell Rowland imprints on the beautiful and mysterious Aurora Tanner. With Mitch’s dangerous lycan secret and Aurora’s demon father out to kill her, they must band together to fight against the very things that could ultimately keep them apart.
I sincerely enjoyed writing characters who was so passionate and young. It was a lot of fun and I hope the readers will enjoy it, as well.
KMJ: What inspired you to write this story?
AM: The inspiration for this story, like many, came from personal experiences. Mitch is very afraid of intimacy. He was the first character who popped into my head, and he was born from some of the things we’ve all experienced. There are times when you meet someone and think, hey, I wonder if I can really be myself around this person? It can be very scary to drop your mask for another person. And I was so interested in exploring those types of issues fully through my character’s lenses.
KMJ: What made you want to join in on an anthology?
AM: Oh, this was fun. I have a very fabulous critique group and at one of our sessions, someone said, let’s write an anthology! And as we unpacked all the reasons we should, and shouldn’t, we decided to go for it. And we decided to self-publish.
I can tell you, none of us knew what we were getting into. First, we decided we would have a thread of continuity throughout the entire collection through each relationship. For instance, Mitch is best friends with Hazel – in the last story of the anthology, Hunting Witch Hazel. I had no idea it was so difficult to capture another person’s character based on a description. I can tell you, there were times when Heather, the author of the other story, would tell me I had the voice all wrong. And it hurt my feelings, but I’d go back to the drawing board the next day.
Then there was all the self-publishing things, like book covers and editing, to deal with.
But was challenging as it all was at times, I had a great time creating this. I can’t believe it’s done, but it is just as rewarding as I’d hoped it would be. They really are a wonderful group of authors, and I’ve learned so much. That’s the reason behind it all.
KMJ: What made you choose this genre to write in?
AM: I have always loved paranormal, but because of some of the market trends and decline in new sales of paranormal romances, I haven’t been writing in the genre. Since we had complete control over the content, I took the chance to revisit my first love. It’s a story I was really interested in telling, so that was my opportunity.
KMJ: What advice would you give other aspiring writers?
AM: To never give up. Walking in stilettos takes time to learn, along with a few bruises along the way. I wouldn’t expect writing to be any other way.
KMJ: Lastly, what can readers expect next from you?
AM: Well, I have a few stories in the works. The first would be a sports romance, which is currently under consideration by a publisher, so hopefully that will be the next. My current work in progress is a contemporary romance about co-workers who begin a relationship and try to maintain professionalism. That one is fun to write. It’s always great to watch to strong willed people try to jockey for position. So, a couple of contemporary and we’ll see if I can get to another paranormal soon. I should mention, all are multicultural romances.
Aliza would love for you to join her and the other Falling Hard authors over on Facebook on 5/31 for their release party. Lots of fun and prizes to be had!
Click here to join: https://www.facebook.com/events/376131875905513/
And now here is an excerpt from Dark Hearts:
Aurora Tanner had told herself that she wouldn’t get into any mischief. She’d been friends with Hazel since she’d arrived, and with the assistance of Hazel’s witchcraft and multiple safety wards at the bridge to keep her father at bay, Aurora had managed to stay out of trouble.
This Mitch was trouble on a stick. He had the swagger of a hip-hop star, the looks of an actor, and the body of a god. When he’d walked up to her, the awkward moment of silence had made her want to jump him with both hands and feet. He sent her demon intuits into overdrive.
Something about him cracked her exterior. “Well, you’re standing here. What can I do for you, Mitch?” she asked, glancing around the room. There was no sign of demon handiwork, so she relaxed a little.
Mitch stepped into her personal space. Inhaling deeply, he stared at her. Unlike most men, he focused on her face. “Oh, baby, you’ve done a lot for me already,” he growled.
His eyes were different. The deep coal black of them reminded her of her father. Alchoe, her incubus father, had those eyes, along with the rest of their kind. Mitch wasn’t a demon, but she could tell that he wasn’t fully human. His dark hair languished in his face, making him look somehow both deadly and safe. “That was classy,” she said.
This man stood before her, seizing her and making her want to latch onto him. His deep-set eyes were Superman blue with an icy edge, framed by thick, full brows, giving him a sexy, dark look. His jaw line was pronounced. Thick tufts of dark brown hair framed his face, the close-cut sides highlighting his chiseled features.
Her panties were suddenly uncomfortable as he leaned into her, too close.
“If I had a choice, I would apologize. Doesn’t seem that I do. I noticed you from across the room. You’re . . . different than the other girls,” he said.
You can pick up Falling Hard here:
And you can find Aliza Mann on the web here in these cool places:
KMJ: Thanks so much for being here today. It’s been a real pleasure.
AM: Thanks for having me, Kwana. It’s been a blast.
Happy Holidays! I hope you all are having a wonderful start to the holiday season. I’m hopping into it with bells on with a bunch of my favorite writer friends by participating in not 1 but 2 holiday blog hops! And of course I’m reluctantly pulling Jack along for the ride.
The 1st will be a fabulous Christmakwanzakah Blog Hop from December 8-19 (My day is Dec 12th) where me and other fabulous authors will be sharing original holiday themed short stories. How fun! Look out for tweets and notifications from me and be sure to stop by all the author’s blogs for a new story every day!
The next is a blog hop with the fabulous Smutketeers! This hop runs from December 9th -21st and I’ll be up on their blog on the 18th where you’ll see my greeting and can enter for a chance to win a 20.00 Amazon gift card! Stop by to see all the authors and enter every day and you’ll be eligible for a chance to win their big grand prize worth 300.00!
Whew, that’s a lot of hopping. I’m sure by the end you and me both will be ready for a spot under the tree with Jack.
Have a wonderful week and see you back here during the Holidays!
All the best,
All the best,
Happy New Week and the summer flutters along, seeming to flitter away just out of my grasp, it’s going by so quickly. I hope it’s going a little slower and a bit more leisurely for you. This past weekend though I did get to enjoy a fun summer night heading to the Bronx to cheer on the Yankees and see The Captain #2 Derek Jeter in his final season. The family and I had a great time and the Yankees won too. It was fantastic all around!
Next week I have some more excitement coming up (and a bit of terror too if you know me). On Monday night August 4th I’m honored to have been invited to read at the fabulous Lady Jane’s Salon once again.
This time I’ll be reading my essay from Scribbling Women, the for Charity Anthology edited by Lady Jane founder Hope Tarr which I’m so proud to be a contributor to. If you are in New York please stop by. My essay is sure to embarrass my dear DH as it’s all about how we sleep together after 25 years. The poor man being married to a romance writer. LOL
All the best,
Happy New Week and Happy New Month!
This has been a busy few days with the annual book expo at the Jacob Javits Center. It was a bit tiring but also nice to see so many out and so much excitement going on about new and upcoming books. I was able to snap quits a few pics with my phone so I’ll let another collage do the talking for me here.
It was great to see come of my friends getting to sign copies of their books like Falguni Kothari with BOOTIE and THE BEAST and Eileen Palma with her debut WORTH THE WEIGHT. Also check me with the amazing Loretta Chase and do you see the legendary Ms. Brenda Jackson and Ginger Jamison and is that Tiffany Reisz and Megan Hart? Oh yeah! And down in the corner, yes that is THE Billy Idol. I know, insert earworm here. LOL. We had so much fun. And I’m totally blaming Falguni and Alyssa Cole for the Batman/Spiderman pic. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
I’m excited to say that I’ll be signing copies of my books (Through the Lens, Seduction’s Canvas, Threads of Desire & Bounce) this month at The Romance Festival put on by my RWA/NYC RWA chapter and being held on June 14th at the historic Morris-Jumel house in Washington Heights in New York City from 1-4:30. The admission is free and there will be readings from the authors as well as some exciting talks and the books from many NYC authors available for purchase. If you’re in the city on that day please come on out and see us. Check this great line up:
The Morris-Jumel Mansion
65 Jumel Terrace
(between West 160th & 162nd Street)
Admission is FREE!
Anna DePalo (USA Today Best Selling Contemporary Romance Writer: The Romance Genre)
Elizabeth Mahon (Scandalous Women: The Lives and Loves of History’s Most Notorious Women)
Carol Ward (Director Morris-Jumel Mansion: The Loves of Eliza Jumel)
For Love and Liberty:
Multicultural and LGBT Love Stories during the American Revolution
With – Stacey Agdern, Alyssa Cole, Lena Hart, and Kate McMurray
Tours of the Morris-Jumel Mansion will be available throughout the day!
Oh and finally this bit of coolness: My book is being featured on Tuesday June 3rd 2014 at eBookSoda, a new readers’ site where they’ll send you ebook recommendations tailored to your taste. www.ebooksoda.com. Check me out! Yay 🙂
Have a great day!
All the best,
Let’s all hold hands for this shall we?
It’s finally here! Bounce is available in print and I’m a little over the moon about it!
So much so that I’ve gone and made a totally embarrassing unboxing video to express my feelings (no one was home and I had a not so bright idea about documenting a moment). Um, yeah, there’s a reason that I don’t do public speaking and you’ll all get to see it now. But at the encouragement of my Dear Son who was either moved by my video or wants others to share in his mother’s silliness I’m going to take a leap and go ahead and share.
Hey, I may not be blessed with the gift of gab, but I am happy to finally have my 1st step into self-publishing now in print as well as digitally available to share with all of you. Thanks so much to everyone who helped make this happen. I will forever be grateful. There are too many to mention, but I would like to give a heartfelt special thanks to the amazing Ms. Lauren Dane for her beautiful cover quote. I am so honored. Also a special thank you to Irene and Julie for their wonderful quotes. You ladies are fabulous!
Thanks, Thanks and more THANKS! This has been quite the journey.
BOUNCE with me people!
Available in print here
All the best,
The fabulous and super talented Michelle Monkou tagged me in this writing process blog tour and as I do with all tag type things I froze but then realized we were not playing freeze tag so there you have it. I’m it… So RUN! No don’t run, sit a bit and read on about my process and how this writing thing works for me….Enjoy.
What am I working on?
But the thing about the world being your oyster and all means the possibilities are endless and oh boy pretty shiny thing over there. But no, I must focus and work on one project at a time (Well maybe two). This year I’ve got a fun romantic comedy brewing and I’m working on a sequel for BOUNCE so there is all sorts of sexy fun suburbia intrigue coming that way.
How does my work differ from others of its genre? I think the difference in my work, like what others have said before me, is voice. People say all the stories have been told and I don’t know, for the most part that may be true. But I do know the stories have not been told my way. It’s always fun for me to find a new author with an exciting and new voice and I hope that now some folks are getting that feeling in my works too.
Why do I write what I do? I’ve always been a dreamer, making up stories in my head. I’ve also always been a fan of romance and contemporary women’s fiction so writing in this genre was a natural fit.
How does your writing process work?
Can I just say it’s a mystery?
As for work? I don’t know how well it works. I’m always looking for ways to streamline it and write now I’m taking a fantastic Scrivener class given my Gwen Hernandez to help me get my many writing thoughts into a more organized contained place.
I’d like to get to the point that I wake, up sit at the keyboard and the words flow like spring rain and not my usual open laptop, sit and stare. Blink. Go to kitchen come back. Sit, stare some more, reach for the faraway word. Write a sentence. Stare at screen. Walk to kitchen again. Go back to computer. Turn away. Flip TV on then Off. Check emails. Oh wait, Twitter! Look at clock an hour later panic then write a few hundred words. The character’s voices now too loud to be ignored a moment longer so I must write and quiet them down until the next day’s noise.
Yeah I’m thinking this process can be improved on dramatically. There are many stories to write and a smooth process will help it a bunch.
And now with me being it an all I have the fun job of tagging other writers so that they can share their processes with you. So I’m now tagging…
Synithia Williams: Synithia Williams has loved romance novels since reading her first one at the age of 13. It wasn’t until 2010 that she began to actively pursue her publishing dreams. Her first novel, You Can’t Plan Love was published in August 2012 by Crimson Romance. When she isn’t writing, this local government gal, works to improve air and water quality, while balancing the needs of her husband and two sons. www.SynithiaWilliams.com
Jeanine McAdam : : Jeanine McAdam is a writer of twenty-five romantic short stories, a few spicy anthologies and three cowboy books. Telling stories about imperfect people finding perfect love is her thing. She’s currently writing about bull riders and the spunky urban women who love them in her Skirts and Spurs Trilogy. www.JeanineMcAdam.com
Falguni Kothari: Born and bred in Mumbai, Falguni Kothari currently lives in New York with her family and an utterly spoiled dog. She’s the author of BOOTIE AND THE BEAST (April 2014 via Harlequin Mills and Boon,) IT’S YOUR MOVE, WORDFREAK! and SCRABBULOUS IMPRESSIONS, a short story. www.FalguniKothari.com
All the best,
Happy Friday and Happy weekend! Wishing you all a bright and sunny one and one where there is hopefully a nice warm up for all of us. Please no snow and no ice storms. Let’s keep it nice and light, shall we?
This weekend I’ll be, I’m sure (since I already am), a little verklempt since my lovely DD will be heading off to France for her semester abroad. There will no doubt be a teary goodbye but I’ll try to save the full on waterworks for the car ride home. I’m just hopeful that she learns a lot, stays safe and has the time of her life. France, please be good to my baby.
As for today please join me over at the newly launched Romance at Ramdom site where I’m getting real and talking BOUNCE. And speaking of BOUNCE, if you haven’t bounced in yet now is the perfect time since I’m holding a kick up your heels $0.99 for a limited time. Enjoy!
All the best,
image from we heart it.
I’m so happy to have an interview with new author Christina Jones on ye old blog today. Christina is a talented author, blogger who is also a busy working wife and mom. It’s a treat to get to pick her brain for a few moments.
Hi Christina thanks so much for being here on ye old blog today. It’s a real pleasure. First off can you tell us a bit about your current work?
My latest work, Strictly Professional is the story of a 20-something, Gabi, who is trying her best to gain her independence and make her mark on the world, despite the efforts of her family and a (quite frankly) crazy ex. In the midst of this, she develops a crazy level of chemistry with someone (Terrence) that it’s probably not a very good idea to become romantically involved with. On the other side, we have Terrence, who is very focused on his career, and definitely not looking for love. They both have to decide if they’re willing to risk not only their hearts, but their careers in order to pursue what could be happily every after.
Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve always known that I had a passion for writing, and storytelling, but I did not know that I wanted to be a writer. I started out writing in long hand, back in high school. I would put together these folders of stories, and pass them around amongst my class. There was a situation where someone I really cared about wasn’t supportive of it, and I stopped writing for a long time. I actually hadn’t written in years, and started back up on a whim, writing fan fiction, just as a way to put my work out there, and get feedback from other people. Then, I found out that I could publish my own work, and I just decided “Hey, I’m gonna write a novel!” So I did.
Wow good for you, going for it and putting yourself out there. That’s brave! Do you feel your works are more character or plot driven?
I feel like my work is definitely more character driven. Before I even put a single word on the page, I get to know my character. What motivates them, what makes them happy, what pisses them off, etc. Once I know them well, I’m confident in putting their story down on the page, and I won’t change my character to fit something that I want to happen in the story. It’s not my story, it’s theirs!
What made you choose this genre to write in?
I chose my genre (Contemporary Romance/Women’s Fiction) because it is one of my favorite genres to read. The other genre is Fantasy, and I am absolutely not equipped right now for the type of detail and world-building that goes into Fantasy! I love to be able to escape into a book with characters and situations that I can relate to, and I want to create that type of feeling for other people.
Tell us a bit about your writing schedule. Are you a Plotter or a Pantser?
I am absolutely a Pantser! I have a graphic design business, two small children, a husband, and I’m in college full time, so during the semester, I just have to get in where I fit in! Anytime I can grab thirty minutes here, an hour there, I take it and do what I can. I’m definitely more productive during the short breaks from school.
LOL so just a little busy. Thanks so much for taking the time to be with us today. Lastly, what can readers expect next from you?
My latest WIP is going to be a bit more fast-paced and fun that Strictly Professional. It’s a story of two sisters, and their struggles with family, career, and of course relationships. These women are in their 30s, so it will be a little more grown up as well. It’s untitled as of now, and I have no idea when I’ll finish, but I’m hoping I’ll be done and ready to start on the second part to Strictly Professional by this Summer.
Once again thanks for being here. It was a real treat and a pleasure!
Readers you can find Christina at these sites just a few clicks away.
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BeingMrsJones
Twitter – www.twitter.com/beingmrsjones
And your can pick up your copy of Strictly Professional here.
All the best,
Happy Monday! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. The temperature is still set to Brrr here in the Northeast. Though I know we’re still firmly in Winter I’m starting to have long Summer daydreams where all the scenes in my head feature warm breezes, open toed shoes and guys who don’t care all that much for shirts. Time to get to writing.
And speaking of writing today I’m beyond the moon to announce the sale of Scribbling Women and the Real Life Heroes Who Love Them. I am so thrilled and honored to be one of the writers asked to be in this anthology where for the first time I’m not writing fiction, but giving a glimpse into my own real life romance (one word: Spooning) and I’m doing it for a wonderful cause. Here is a bit about Scribbling Women:
In Scribbling Women and the Real-Life Romance Heroes Who Love Them, twenty-eight popular romance fiction writers reveal their real-life stories of how they met, wed and love—and are loved and supported by—their spouses and life partners. At times whimsical and laugh-out-loud funny, at others poignant and bittersweet, all unfailingly inspiring, each essay celebrates that most powerful and sacred of human bonds: love.
Happily Ever After isn’t only the stuff of romance novels and fairy tales. It is every woman’s birthright.
All net sales of the anthology support Win (www.winnyc.org)
I hope you enjoy!
All the best,