Hi Folks I’ve packed up my wares and for the day I’m guest posting over at Romance at Random.
I’m over there talking about my eclectic Summer reading. Pop on over, join the convo and share what you’re reading. There’s a cool giveaway that-a-way too!
Thanks. Happy Sunday!
Image fm here
What’s Jack up to? Jack is happy to today because there is a guest blogger (with a nice giveaway) on ye’ old blog. Yay! And how can Jack not be thrilled? Look at the company Amanda McCabe keeps. Here she is with her pug Victoria and checkout sweet Abigail in her Halloween costume.
Yep, Jack in not alone in having an, um… interesting owner. Now here’s Amanda!
Hi everyone! I’m so excited to be back at Kwana’s blog today, and excited to be talking about my “Muses of Mayfair” trilogy from Harlequin Historicals. These books, To Catch a Rogue, To Deceive a Duke, and To Kiss a Count (plus the prequel, a Harlequin Historical Undone short story, where a real Greek Muse comes to wreak havoc on Regency London!) are out in April, May, and June. They’re very special to me since I got to re-visit two childhood dreams—to have sisters and to become an archaeologist! Neither came true alas, but that’s what writing is for…
I became fascinated by archaeology when I was kid and found a beautiful book my parents owned about famous archaeological sites around the world. There were gorgeous photos and detailed articles about the sites’ discovery and exploration. I spent hours poring over this book! But then I tore up the newly-planted grass in our backyard to search for Viking treasure (with assistance from our German shepherd, who was very enthusiastic about this kind of research!). My dad was not happy, and my fledgling career as the new Howard Carter was nipped in the bud. But I never lost my love of history and a good tale of adventure and discovery, and I was able to use this with the Muses.
The Chase sisters are a product of the Regency-era love of the classical world and infatuation with its artwork. Their father, Sir Walter Chase, is a famous scholar and antiquarian who named his daughters after the Muses. Now the 3 eldest—Calliope, Clio, and Thalia—follow in his footsteps as scholars in their own rights. They form the Ladies Artistic Society to further their studies—but their bookish lives are overturned by the unexpected arrival of 3 sexy, dangerous heroes!
I had so much fun creating 3 very different heroines and finding the perfect men for them, as well as exploring their sisterly connections. I also loved putting them 3 different settings and plotting the mysteries surrounding ancient objects. Calliope and Cameron in To Catch a Rogue are in glittering London and Gothic Yorkshire, chasing after a statue of the goddess Artemis (based on one I saw in the Louvre!). When I wrote To Deceive a Dukeit was the middle of winter and I wanted some warm sun, so Clio and the Duke of Averton get sent to Sicily to protect a precious hoard of temple altar silver (based on the famous “Morgantina silver” in the Met). I loved finding out what was really going on between these two! And Thalia and Marco in To Kiss a Countgo to Bath, also chasing after the silver and the villainess who has stolen it—or has she? The genteel Bath façade of tea and assemblies conceals danger and skullduggery galore! (Plus I do have a weakness for Italian men like Marco…)
So I had a fabulous time re-visiting my childhood passions and playing “Regency Indiana Jones” with the Chase Muses! What did you love as a child? And what are some of your favorite archaeological sites or art objects? I’ll give away a complete trilogy to one commenter…
“Great conversations, an engaging plot with lots of complications, and realistic, charming characters make To Catch a Rogue and Amanda McCabe a winner” –Cataromance
“Amanda McCabe has crafted a spell-binding, sensuous read grounded in Greek mythology. Filled with muses, romance, intrigue, and mystery, this thrill-of-the-hunt Regency historical evokes visions of Aphrodite and Apollo amongst the ton setting. Like any great read, I was sad for it to end!” –The Season
Amanda can be found at her website at: http://ammandamccabe.com/
or on her blog at: http://amandamccabe.blogspot.com/
Thanks so much for being here Amanda! It was a pleasure having you guest post today.
Now, comment away people. Winner will be announced on Wednesday’s post.
- Imagine my twitterly glee when I saw that Sarah from one of my all time favorite blogs: Smart Bitches Who Love Trashy Books was offering to guest post on folks blogs today since SBs were going through maintenance. Their loss my gain. Evil I am. I jumped at the offer! So without further delay here’s Sarah…OMG you are SO RIGHT. My thermometer in NJ is reading a balmy 32.8 and I am excited about every last one of those last .8 degrees above freezing.The thing about cold weather is that it makes me crave soup, hot beverages, and really long, luscious, forget-where-I-am-and-how-cold-it-is books. These are a special section of my keeper shelf – cold weather books. I have vacation books, need-a-break-books, and the ones that Calgon-take-me-away immediately.My top cold weather books (add blanket and hot beverage, spiked if you like it, and really, really warm socks) are:“The Duke and I” – Julia Quinn. Holy smackerel I love this book. No matter where I start reading it, I’m in. Warmth of a happy family and a truly loving heroine: le sigh.”Charms for the Easy Life,” by Kaye Gibbons – not a romance, but three women’s storys, past present and future, heavy on the magic and midwifery.“Lyon’s Lady” by Julie Garwood. This one is on my bedstand because I am always FREEZING when I get in bed, and a few pages makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. I love old Garwood historicals but this one is among my faves.What books warm your toes?(Thanks for letting me guest blog!)Smart Bitch SarahSmart Bitches Trashy Books LLCThanks so much Sarah! I’m honored to have you on my blog today. I’ll be sure to put those books on my snuggle up list along with a Snuggie!Everyone please hop on over to SBTB when they are up and running. It is the place to be for those in the know on romance. And chime in on the books that warm your toes. For me it’s anything with a sexy rake and a stubborn heroine. Elizabeth Hoyt, Lisa Kleypas, Eloisa James please.Best,Kwana
Today we’ve got a treat on KwanaWrites, a guest blogger, Roberta Iselib who is here to share a few secrets with us. Take it away Roberta!
Six Secrets for Keeping Your Sanity While Chasing Your Dream (Writing, that is!)
Clinical psychologist Roberta Isleib has just seen her eighth novel published in seven years. ASKING FOR MURDER is the third book in the series featuring advice columnist/psychologist Rebecca Butterman. Roberta’s also wrapping up her year of service as president of National Sisters in Crime.
In ASKING FOR MURDER (Berkley, 2008), Dr. Rebecca Butterman’s dear friend, a sandplay therapist, is found badly beaten and left for dead. Rebecca’s determined to help search for answers. With a would-be killer on the loose, she can only hope the clues are buried within easy reach. Think: best friends, crazy families, and the mysteries of sandplay therapy.
ROBERTA: Thanks for agreeing to host me on your blog Kwana! It’s hard to believe eight books have come out since SIX STROKES UNDER in 2002. I promised I’d try to pull together some of the things I’ve learned over this time and here they are, in no particular order.
MAKE A PLAN: As I begin a book, I look ahead to the due date and figure out how many pages I’ll need to write each week in order to hand it in on time. I build in time for trips and family and time for my writers group to read and critique, and then time for me to rewrite. Then I have a page goal for each week. I write until I’ve hit the goal, sometimes even getting a little ahead. If I have an unproductive day, it just means writing a little faster later in the week to keep up.
HAMMER IT OUT: Get it all down, even if it’s awful. You can always go back and fix things later. Anne Lamott called this “the shitty first draft”—she had it right!
SET YOUR SIGHTS HIGH: As a psychologist, I know the importance of having “big goals” for my subconscious to aim at. So I keep a copy of the NY Times bestseller list pasted up over my computer. Then I forget about it and work on the books word by word…
FIND A BALANCE: The business part of writing is hard–the part I have no control over. I can produce a fabulous book, but unless the publisher is really behind it and I have a bit of luck somewhere along the line, it’s unlikely to be a commercial success. That’s why I do as much as I can to promote, as long as it doesn’t interfere with my writing! I want to be able to say I gave it my all without killing myself in the process.
MANAGE YOUR PROCRASTINATION SOFT SPOTS: I’m still learning that I don’t have to answer every email the second it arrives! If I’m having trouble concentrating, best approach for me is to turn the email off and look at it as a reward for when I’ve reached my word count goal.
YOU’VE GOT TO HAVE FRIENDS: Writing can be such a lonely, discouraging business. I’ve gotten very involved with mystery organizations (Sisters in Crime and MWA, and joined Romance Writers and Yahoo groups such as Fiction That Sells. The friends I’ve met there have saved my sanity and supported me endlessly along the way.
TAKE YOUR TIME: Don’t rush off too soon to try to get your work published. This business is extremely competitive so it’s crucial to have your writing polished before sending it out. The Internet makes querying too easy—don’t press send until you’re sure the piece is the best it can be. I have lots of info on my website about agents and getting published and some of the scams writers fall for. Read it over when you’re ready. http://www.robertaisleib.com/
Wonderful advice! Thanks so much for guest blogging here today Roberta. Stop back anytime. Everyone check out Roberta and her amazing books. You won’t be disappointed.
P.S. Scroll down for “reality” rundown