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Archive for the ‘Star Harbor’ Category

Thanks to everyone who commented! Lisa Downs is this week’s winner!

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Hey, all. Long time no blog. I’ve been crazy life-busy over the last two weeks, with work, spring break for my oldest, visits from relatives, and doing a lot of solo parenting (Mr. B has had a lot of work lately). This weekend I was supermom. Seriously. Super. Mom. Here’s a partial list of what the kids and I did:

*made banana-chocolate-chip muffins
*visited the SF Zoo
*hiked and sketched the tidepools at the Fitzgerald Marine Reserve
*rode bikes for hours
*went grocery shopping
*practiced telling time
*read tons of books
*went on a bug hunt (no bugs were harmed)
*built awesome Lego stuff
*had fun

It’s tough making all three of the kids happy, but I did my best. And I really wore them out. On both days I had them solo, they fell asleep as soon as their little heads touched their clean pillowcases (I also did 7 loads of laundry. And made homemade meatballs.). Mmm . . .  I keep saying supermom, but really I should just say crazy.

Unsurprisingly, the kids aren’t the only ones who are worn out, but mama can’t take a break because I need to edit the first book in my Connecticut contemporary series, which needs some tweaking before it goes to my agent. This tweaking will happen this week since all three kids are in school and I only have one relative visiting. See what I did there? I put it in bold so it will happen. There. I did it again.

I’ll check in with you next Monday to let you know how it all turns out.

I’m really anxious to finish up this book, not just because people are waiting for it, but because there are other things I am chomping at the bit to write, and I want to get this off my desk before I start on something new. I wonder, do most people work on lots of different projects at once, or do they work on one at a time? In life, I juggle many things and don’t mind working on tons at once, but with writing, I like just one project. Strange, huh?

Anyhow, a giveaway is in order. This week, it’s a signed copy of Rachel Gibson’s Rescue Me. Let me know what will happen for you this week in the comments and you’ll be entered to win. It’s a paperback, so US only, please. Contest ends Thursday, February 27, at 9pm Pacific.

Also, Blaze of Winter, featuring the fabulous Theo Grayson, is on sale for two weeks for 99 cents. Please pass the word along!!

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The winners are bn100, Kimberly Dawn, and mamawj99. Your books are winging their way through the interwebs as I write! Thanks again for joining me!

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Star Harbor Series CoverToday, I am super excited to announce that you can now have a Grayson brother for every season in one package! That’s right! Seb, Theo, Cole and Val are all in one four-book bundle, because the Star Harbor Four-Book Bundle set, including Deep Autumn Heat, Blaze of Winter, Long Simmering Spring, and Slow Summer Burn is officially on sale as of today! It’s selling for $8.99 (a steal, given that each book alone is typically $2.99), but you can get it at Google Play and Amazon for even cheaper at $7.69 (an even bigger steal!). This is the perfect chance for you to introduce your friends to the Graysons of Star Harbor!

Buy links are here: Amazon | Barnes & NobleApple | Google | Other Places

FLASH GIVEAWAY:

We’re doing something a little different today. Typically, Monday giveaways run until Thursday evening, but this giveaway is only 12 hours long! In honor of the fact that Long Simmering Spring is still on sale for 99 cents, I’m going to give away three digital copies of the book! Like I said, the contest ends today, so sign up for my newsletter here and be quick with your comments because it will wrap up tonight at 9pm and books will be sent immediately. Please use the email you want the book sent to (won’t be made public) and your reader of choice (will be made public). International entries okay, since it’s all digital!

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Thanks to everyone who left a comment! Vickie Dailey and Barbara Hopkins are the winners! 

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Happy New Year! I’m very glad to be back after taking the last two weeks of December off for vacation. Mr. B and I took the kids to Los Angeles. We skipped Disney, but had all sorts of other excellent adventures. My oldest is really into art, so we hauled over to the new Getty, and let him sketch to his heart’s content. Of course the little two followed suit, so I have a ton of photos of all three of them spread out in every single gallery, sketching away in their pads. We also visited the Peterson Automobile Museum, the La Brea Tar Pits (huge hit!), the beach, the Griffith Observatory, the Santa Monica Pier, and on our way back north, the Mission at Santa Barbara. Did I mention we drove? Oh, yes. We drove–our longest road trip to date, and all in all, I’d say it went really well. It was a really nice way to close out a very busy year.

Writing-wise, things were very busy. I had three releases in 2013 . . . the third and fourth Star Harbor books, Long Simmering Spring and Slow Summer Burn, as well as a holiday novella, Christmas in TahoeAlthough I only have one release currently slated for 2014 (an omnibus of the Star Harbor series containing all four Star Harbor books, which is on sale January 27th), there may be others, so stay tuned for news! Releases aside, I have an ambitious writing schedule ahead, including the first two books of my Connecticut contemporary series, as well as another novella! And I have a few speaking engagements and appearances scheduled so far, including later this month at Silicon Valley RWA, and at the Redwood Writers Conference up in Sonoma in April. I’ll also definitely be at the big national RWA conference in San Antonio in July.

I didn’t make goals for 2014, per se. I just did a detailed analysis of my work schedule, built the writing into it, and am going to hope for the best! We’ll just have to see whether I get it all done when I check in next January, but I’m optimistic. After all, most of the talks I give are on organizing time to write, so I’d better be good at organizing my own time!

One thing I absolutely must do is give away my huge pile of books/swag. I know I’ve said this before, but these books are taking up most of the available space on my dresser, and I think Mr. B is getting rather annoyed by the clutter. So let me welcome in the new year by giving away two (2) copies of Emily March’s excellent Reflection Point. Love this series, love this woman, and contemporary small town romance is the perfect way to start off 2014! Leave a comment letting me know if you have made any resolutions this year (or if you believe resolutions are simply made to be broken!). Contest ends Thursday, January 9 at 9pm Pacific and winners will be announced on Friday. U.S. only, please, since these are paperbacks!

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Thanks to everyone who commented. Michele and bn100 are the winners, and I’ll be emailing you shortly to get you your prizes!  

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Last week, the universe conspired against me. If you look at my Google calendar, it’s totally crazy–booked solid from 8am-10pm every single day. Needless to say, I got pretty much zero personal stuff done, zero sleep clocked (but a ton of work done, of course) and by the end of the week, I just wanted to curl up and cry.

This will have to change.

Other things have to change, too. Like the exercise thing. And the eating right thing. And the taking time for myself thing. I think there are too many things, which seems daunting, but I’m going to start making lists, and hopefully everything will be better once I have my lists. I like lists. And friends. One of the things that made me feel better about the week was that S and T, two of my best friends, came over on Friday night and I served this delicious roasted lamb with carrots and potatoes, and white beans and French string beans and S brought a giant salad and T brought chocolate-covered brownies (!) and we drank some Pinot and it was good. Here are some pics of the feast:

The Roasted Lamb

The Roasted Lamb

White Beans

White Beans

Haricots Vert

Haricots Verts

And speaking of good friends . . . when I was at the RWA National conference this year, I was fortunate enough to attend the literacy signing. We were all seated alphabetically , and I was at one of the “B” tables with some truly remarkable and lovely authors. Sophie Barnes, Marilyn Baron, Ana Barrons and Christi Barth were all at my table (as Barrett, I had the honor sitting dead center). They all gave me some great swag. Sophie donated an awesome totebag, Marilyn gave me a SIGNED copy of Under the Moon Gate along with a cool bookmark, Ana offered a SIGNED CD copy of Betrayed by Trust, and Christi handed me a beautiful bookmark.

Swag From Some Lovely Authors

Goodies From Some Lovely Authors

So how about I divide up the swag into two groups? I’ll give it away to two lucky winners who leave a comment (and are on my mailing list – sign up here) telling me a good, recent friend story. Contest ends Thursday at midnight, Pacific time, and I’ll announce the winners on Friday. U.S. only, please, but international commenters are always welcome!!

Last but not least, I’m blogging with Fresh Fiction today, so hop on over there, leave a comment, and you could win a digital copy of Slow Summer Burn. And since everyone here’s probably read it, I’ll send it to a friend if you win!! Also, I’m doing a Goodreads Giveaway of two paper copies of Long Simmering Spring, so please friend me on Goodreads and enter the giveaway!

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Thank you all for the amazing release day support! I’m happy to let you know that the winners are Joanne B and angieia! There are still chances to win copies of the book at Romance@Random, Kindles & Wine, and Under The Covers! Good luck, and stay tuned for another giveaway next Monday!

 

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Slow Summer Burn is out today, and I am extremely excited to share Val and Cam with you all. I know many of you have been waiting a long time for the oldest Grayson brother to get his HEA, and I’m happy to say that day is finally here!

Final Slow Summer Burn

Here’s the official copy:

As the sizzling Star Harbor series concludes, the fourth sexy Grayson brother, a dedicated DEA agent, shows a high-society beauty the true meaning of love.

Cameron Stahl has everything, so why does she feel like her life is incomplete? A beautiful Boston socialite and a successful entrepreneur, she’s just opened her second boutique in Star Harbor and business is booming. But one searing look from Val Grayson sends fire through her body and shows her exactly what’s missing from her life: a real man who doesn’t play games and who makes her feel like the most desired woman on earth.

DEA agent Val Grayson has always looked after his brothers. Now it’s his turn to find love—though Cam is the last sort of woman he ever dreamed he’d fall for. When courageous Cam realizes she has the insider connections to help Val take down a major drug player within Boston’s political elite, he can’t stop her from putting herself in danger. But as the drug bust of his career looms, all Val cares about is saving the woman he loves before it’s too late.

People have been saying some very, very nice things about the book.

Heroes and Heartbreakers gave it a lovely “first look” review and it was an August recommended read at Contemporary Romance Café!

For those of you who’ve pre-ordered the book, thank you! If you haven’t picked up your copy, you can buy the book everywhere e-books are sold! Here are some links:

Amazon | Barnes & NobleApple | Google | Other Places

I’m also (blog) touring, and I’d love for you to join along. Today, I’m at Romance@Random and USA Today’s HEA, so please stop by and say hi! The rest of my schedule is posted here. There will be giveaways galore, including here!! For release week, I’m giving away digital copies of Slow Summer Burn to two newsletter subscribers who leave comments (if you’re not a newsletter subscriber, you can sign up here). And if you’ve already gotten your copy, I’ll send it to one of your friends! Contest ends at midnight on 8/15 and I’ll announce the winners on Friday!

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Thanks so much to everyone who commented! So happy to get your kind notes, and hear your own opposites attract stories! The winner of Jennifer Probst’s signed copy of the The Marriage Merger is cajbrand and the winner of Elise Sax’s An Affair to Dismember is Bette Hansen. I’ll be emailing you both later today! Thanks again for joining me, and come back on Monday for yet another giveaway!!

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So, wow. I have a lot to tell you all.

A couple of months ago, I was in a rut. My writing had kind of slipped sideways and I was spinning my wheels on a project. Round and round and round. And then I went to the RWA National Conference in Atlanta and it was like someone defibrillated my writing mojo. Within three days of getting back, I finished up that Tahoe novella, editing it down to a glossy sheen, and got my rear in gear for my next project. Pow! 10K words done in three days.

RWA is magic.

The power, the generosity, and the inspiration I got from those amazing writers–those amazing women–is impossible to quantify or even to explain. I deepened friendships with people I already knew, and made new friendships with people I’m so glad to now know. The literacy signing was a blast, I got love from my agent and my editor (always nice!), and fangirled some of my own favorite authors (*cough* Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Jayne Ann Krentz *cough*). I also moderated a workshop for the amazing trio of Jennifer Probst, Laura Kaye, and Katee Robert. I was in heaven! If you’d like to check out all my conference photos, head to Facebook (and please like my page while you’re at it!).

And I got books. Holy mackerel, did I get books! In fact, I need to get rid of these books and I have the perfect reason to do so because …. (drum roll, please) the fourth Star Harbor book, Slow Summer Burn, goes on sale in a mere two weeks!

I had so much fun writing this book because I adore both Val and Cam, and I think they work really well together, despite their obvious differences. I love opposites attract stories, and well, you can’t really get more opposite than these two: Val’s a DEA agent and Cam’s a socialite. He lives on a houseboat. She lives in a brownstone. He wears jeans. She wears diamonds. Needless to say, Cam’s parents don’t exactly approve of Val, but she could care less (nor can Val) and that’s what I love about them both!

But back to those books. Those dozens and dozens of books I got that are now piled up in my room that I really need to give away post haste. To celebrate the amazing time I had at RWA (not to mention my new release), I’m going to start the giveaway off with a bang by giving away one SIGNED copy of Jennifer Probst’s The Marriage Merger (loved it so hard and releases on 7/30!) and one copy of Elise Sax’s An Affair to Dismember (hilarious, and the next book in the series, Matchpoint, also releases on 7/30) to two random commenters. There is no catch, other than that you must be a newsletter subscriber to win (and you can sign up at the bottom of the page here). If you’re stuck for what to write in the comments, just let me know if you have an opposites attract story!

Stay tuned for some more great giveaways as the release day for Slow Summer Burn approaches!!

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Oh, my, my, my. The good folks at Random House posted an excerpt from Long Simmering Spring on Scribd, and you should go read it. Right now. Unless you are at work.* Because it is verrrah dirty. Ahem.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Okay, I was shooting for sexy and emotional, but I’m okay with dirty.

Go. Go now. Unless you are at work.*

Also, I want to give you a heads-up that you should check this space on Tax Day, aka April 15, aka Monday, aka my birthday because I’ll be doing something very special and you will want to be here. Trust me on this one.

*At an office. If you work at home, do whatever you want.

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Happy day after April Fool’s day. I had this post ready to go yesterday, but I worried that whatever I posted on April 1 might be taken as a joke, so I decided to hold off! Today, I’m back in the saddle. I turned in my line edits for Slow Summer Burn to my awesome editor yesterday (not a joke!), and today I’m catching up on everything I’ve neglected over the past few weeks.

First, I can hardly believe it, but Long Simmering Spring, Cole and Julie’s story, is coming out in just over a month(!!!) and I owe you some excerpts. Let’s start at the beginning, shall we?

The telltale sound of the metal-on-metal rigging clanging above deck was a clear indication that Cole Grayson wasn’t inside a stifling-hot canvas tent in Kunar Province. The gentle pitch and roll under his back and the aromas of salt and sea could mean only one thing: he was on his brother’s houseboat in Star Harbor, thousands of miles from Afghanistan. His eyeballs were sticking to his lids, but for once, waking up early didn’t bother him.

He’d finally slept through the night. It had taken him only seven years, three months, and nineteen days.

Not that he was counting.

(c) Elisabeth Barrett 2013

Cole Grayson, featuring his abs.

Cole Grayson, featuring his abs.

First page, first glimpse of our hero, and yes, I really love this man—his whole tortured, repentant, honorable, sexy self. I hope you enjoy reading about him as much as I enjoyed figuring out what made him tick! Pre-order links are here, if you’re so inclined.

Oh, and if you want more, sign up for my newsletter, where I promise to give more tantalizing excerpts and sneak peeks of my upcoming books! If you haven’t signed up, it’s not too late. Just go to the bottom of www.elisabethbarrett.com and follow the prompts. I’m non-spammy and infrequent—I swear!

Next, believe it or not, the fact that my third Star Harbor book is coming out next month isn’t even the main point of this blog post. The main point is to give you a glimpse into my research for my WIP—a Tahoe-based book about a scientist and an actuary. No, no—it’s not boring—really! See, the scientist is really a snowboarder, and the actuary is really a skier and together their chemistry is off-the-charts hot. Like burning up a snowy mountain hot. Trust me on this.

I’m calling the book Tahoe for now, even though I have another working title in my head because the working title is long and kind of confusing. So, yes, it may change.

I’d been thinking about writing a California book for some time and hoped to set it in Silicon Valley. Then I had a great idea about opposites attracting, and somehow the Tahoe angle came into play. Only problem was I’d never been there. And there was only one solution to this problem: ROAD TRIP!!! The first person I called was Spence, my BFF, to see if she’d join me. She didn’t even hesitate. Yes! We wanted another friend to come, but she was in Mammoth Lake that weekend. She tried to get us to come to Mammoth Lake with her instead, but I was undeterred. Tahoe it needed to be, and so Tahoe it was!

It was a whirlwind trip. Spence and I left Silicon Valley on Friday morning after I dropped the Barrett Pack off at school and we were on our way! On the drive up, we stopped at the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield. We didn’t take a tour, but we did indulge in some jellybeans!

Jelly Belly

Jelly Belly

And after a 4-hour drive, we were in Tahoe!!! We saw the lake. It was so blue.

Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe

We climbed a mountain in the snow.

Spence on the backside.

Spence on the backside.

We checked out some of the ski resorts.

Squaw from the approach.

Squaw from the approach.

And we found this sign:

Star Harbor!!!

Star Harbor!!!

YESSSSSS!!!!!

Okay, we knew the sign existed because when Deep Autumn Heat was released, my friend told me about the Star Harbor sign up in Tahoe. Obviously, Spence and I made a pilgrimage to check it out.

We also ate some great food, checked out the local watering holes (no pics, sorry!) and had a blast driving around. We were back home by 6 p.m. on Saturday. See? Whirlwind!

So there you have it folks: Tahoe in photographs! I hope you enjoyed the pictures, and I promise to share some snippets from Tahoe soon. Have you been to Lake Tahoe? Tell me about your experiences!!

One more thing. If you are in the Bay Area this weekend, on Satuday, April 6 at 10 a.m., I’m speaking at the Monterey Bay RWA chapter. Information about the meeting can be found here. It’s only $5 (cheap!) at the Watsonville Community Hospital and you get to hear me talk! Yay!

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Happy New Year!

I wish I could tell you that I was a total slacker and had a completely relaxing holiday, but alas, it was just not to be. I worked my little kazookies off. Writing, editing, work…it all came to a head the last two weeks in December and the first week in January. Throw in some inclement weather and some kids home from school, and well, you know how it went….

I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, though. Work is tapering off, and will continue to taper more through the end of the month. I’ve completed my line edits on Long Simmering Spring, and after one last look tonight, I’ll be sending it back to my editor. And I’ve kickstarted my work on my fourth Star Harbor Book, Slow Summer Burn. I also got super inspired for another book – this one a stand-alone, I think – which is Silicon Valley-Tahoe based. I’m going to try something totally new for me which is to try to write two books simultaneously, as I’m excited to get back to my Connecticut Contemporary series I started in mid-2012.

This all makes for a very inspiring start to the year!

I don’t have any goals this year except to push myself hard. There are so many things I want to write, that I’m inspired to write, and I’m just raring to go!

I thought I’d whet your appetite, though, with a little excerpt from Long Simmering Spring. Let me just give you a little background.

The characters:

Cole Grayson – ex-military, smoking hot, and kind of tortured, now Sheriff of Star Harbor

Julie Kensington - straight-arrow family doctor trying to keep her practice afloat and doing her best not to get drawn in by said smoking hot sherriff

The plot:

Cole and Julie work together to ferret out bad dudes doing bad things in Star Harbor while falling in love. Plus, the hottest sex scene I’ve written (to date).

This 5-sentence snippet is from Cole’s point of view after he’s had a run-in with Julie and she’s still dodging him:

What he wouldn’t give to run his fingers through her hair, crush her to his body, and see how high he could make her fly. See how far he could push her until she unraveled in his arms. But, clever woman that she was, she hadn’t given him an opening. She’d shied away from him since he’d returned, dodging him for months, and always with the same excuse: work. He took a deep drink of his lager, pushing back against the nostalgia, coupled with a smidge of bitterness.

From Long Simmering Spring, (c) Elisabeth Barrett 2013

Like it? Preorder links are here!

I’m looking forward to a great 2013! Hope your year is everything you hope it’ll be!

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I’ve got my jigsaw puzzle, my hot cocoa, and my Jane Austen, so I’m good through New Year’s! I’ll be taking a break from blogging until January to spend time with my family, but before I go, I figured I’d reflect a bit on the events of this year (which isn’t quite over).

For me, 2012 was a big year. My oldest child started kindergarten, I gained significant experience as a writing coach, and generally kept a household of five up and running. Oh, yes, and I debuted as a romance author!

I was thrilled to have Random House publish my first two books as part of its Loveswept line. Deep Autumn Heat kicked off the Star Harbor series, featuring the sexy-as-sin Grayson brothers, and Blaze of Winter followed a few months later. Folks had a lot of wonderful things to say about these books, and I was grateful for all the positive reviews and comments.

I also attended my first conference—Romance Writers of America’s annual meeting in Anaheim, California—where I had a chance to spend quality time with my fabulous editor and equally fabulous fellow Loveswept authors! Through RWA, I also participated in my first book signing (sensing a pattern of firsts here?) and throughout the year, I was honored to speak on several panels covering topics such as writing, editing, and my path to becoming a published author.

There’s a lot more in the pipeline for 2013, as two more Star Harbor books will give the other Grayson brothers ample opportunities for romance. Long Simmering Spring (Cole’s story) is due out in May, and is now available for pre-order on Amazon and B&N. Slow Summer Burn (Val’s story) will be released in August. I love both of these books, and I adore both of these heroes.

I’m also hard at work on a new series. Intimate relationships, secondary characters that pop off the pages, a fabulous Connecticut setting—I’m really psyched about how it’s developing and hope to have more to report next year.

Finally, thanks to the friendships I made at RWA and throughout the romance community, I plan to do more collaborative blogging next year. Stay tuned for more information on this front, as things will start heating up in January.

I also want to thank you all for your support! It is through word-of-mouth (i.e. you telling your friends) that my writing continues to be discovered, and I truly appreciate all the encouragement you’ve given me. Please keep up with all my goings-on through my website, Facebook, Twitter, and of course, right here.

I hope your holiday season is happy, healthy and safe.

All my best,
Elisabeth

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