Archive for the ‘Roguers’ Category

Hooray! Moran is our winner this week! Thanks to everyone who commented!


I have a very special post today. Jules Barnard, an all-around awesome woman and a fellow Roguer, asked me to help with the cover reveal for Blue Crush, the second book in her Blue Series which releases on June 3rd. Jules writes new adult fiction, and this series is set in Tahoe (yay!). I don’t get to do these too often, and even less frequently for a friend, so I’m quite excited. Without further ado, here is the cover:

BlueCrush Amazon GR SW

Gorgeous, no?

And Jules has been kind enough to provide the back cover copy:

Blue Crush (Blue Series, Book #2) 

On the cusp of a humiliating breakup from the safe, conservative boyfriend, who ended up betraying her, Genevieve Tierney moves to Lake Tahoe with her best friend after college to lick her romantic wounds. Earning cash at one of Lake Tahoe’s lucrative casinos before grad school in the fall and keeping a safe distance from cheating jerks seems like a good plan, until she meets the one guy tempting enough to drag her back down. 

Lewis Sallee is six and a half feet of perfectly sculpted mountain man, who captures Gen’s attention from the moment he walks in the door. Her play-it-safe approach to relationships flies out the window as Lewis’s presence awakens a sex drive she never knew she had. Lewis is in a complicated relationship with one of the most beautiful women Gen has ever seen, and despite all logical reasons to stay away—and she’s a logic devotee—Gen can’t seem to control her body’s attraction to him.  

Feeling like a magnet for the worst sort of guys, Gen’s desperate to win the battle for self-control around Lewis and put the sleazy casino men pestering her in their place. To boost her confidence, Gen steps out of her comfort zone and signs up for the Alpine Mudder, a gritty endurance race. But as she prepares for one of the biggest physical challenges of her life, her emotional strength is pushed to its limits when she needs Lewis’s help to train. He tests her willpower and has her fighting her body’s attraction—with her mind and heart not far behind.  


JulesBarnard_editedAbout Author Jules Barnard

Jules Barnard is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area. She attended UC Davis, whose college landscape often finds its way into her New Adult novels. She has a Master’s degree and spent many an hour running statistical analysis, until she realized her favorite part of the job was writing reports. She decided to cut out the math and add in some hot guys, and so began her career as a novelist.

Jules is a Northern California native living on the coast with her husband and two children. She has no impulse control around cupcakes and credits herself with the ability to read while running on the treadmill or burning dinner.




Yay, Jules!

And because this is a special post, I’m giving away a special book — one digital copy of the first in Jules Barnard’s Blue series, Deep Blue. To enter, just leave a comment letting me know what you think about the cover, and you’ll be entered to win. The contest is open to everyone and ends Thursday, April 17 at 9pm Pacific.


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Danielle B. is the winner! Thanks to everyone who commented!


Well, Thanksgiving is over and I’m just getting back into the swing of things now. I had a ton going on (personally and professionally) last week, and this week isn’t proving to be any lighter, so I’ll keep this short: I’m on Fresh Fiction today, talking about holiday travel. You can win a digital copy of Christmas in Tahoe if you leave a comment, and I’d love it if you showed me some love and left a comment!

And I’m doing a giveaway – a Sharon Hamilton prize pack which includes a copy of Heavenly Lover and two cool dog tags from her SEAL series! Sharon is not only a fabulous author (she just made the NYTimes and USA Today lists!) but she’s also a friend. We are part of the same writer’s group called the Roguers, which also includes Marina Adair, Hannah Jayne, Jennifer Ryan, Lia Riley, and Jules Barnard (among others). At any rate, all you have to do to is to comment and tell me how much work you have to get through before Christmas and I’ll pick a random winner from the commenters. Contest ends Thursday night at 9pm Pacific.

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When I thought about how to best describe the amazing whirlwind that was the Romance Writers of America’s National conference of 2012, it was really difficult for me to wrap my head around the event. After all, I just got home yesterday, and it usually takes me about a week or two – sometimes longer – to process the really important things. And let me be clear: RWA12 was really important for me.

I went into the 4-day affair with somewhat of a plan, and for those of you who know me well, this means that I had a set of goals. I won’t bore you with my checklist (you know I had one of those, too!), so I’ll just summarize: to meet as many amazing people as I possibly could, including my editor (and her boss!) from Random House, and the other Loveswept and Ballantine authors, to bolster my understanding of the business aspect of romance writing, and to introduce myself to the community.

I was fortunate enough to have been invited to several Random House events, so I was able to meet some incredible people that way, but equally amazing were the chance meetings I had with others in the industry…the unpublished writer who wanted someone to help her perfect her pitch (Ruthie Knox, Jessica Scott and I were happy to oblige)…the kind agent who two years ago wasn’t the right fit for me, but still gave me loads of encouragement…the Twitter friend with the amazing sense of humor who was just as warm in real life as she is online. These were the kinds of connections I was hoping to make, and that I think will carry me through the rest of the year.

Now that I’ve set the scene, I’m going to show you some photos as I talk you through my week in Anaheim.

Day 1 – Literacy Autographing

My editor, Sue Grimshaw had provided some print ARCs of my debut novel, Deep Autumn Heat, for the event, which looked GORGEOUS, as well as some Romance at Random sticky notepads, flyers, and bonus Hershey’s kisses. I wasn’t sure what to expect, given that it was my first day at my first conference, so I came armed with some 8 ½ x 11 color photos of the cover of Deep Autumn Heat, some business cards with the cover of Blaze of Winter on the front and my website address and QR code on the back (I called these my “tiny Theos”), and a piece of paper in case folks wanted to sign up for my newsletter. What can I say? I was optimistic!

Okay, what I really was was overwhelmed. 500 romance authors in a room and it was loud! Plus, I couldn’t believe I was about to give my first autograph to someone who’d read and loved my book! All I could think was: “Is this really happening?”

When there was a lull in the proceedings, I made a beeline for the incredible Robyn Carr, whose support and encouragement have been invaluable.

I look a bit manic in this photo, mainly because I was kind of in shock that I was meeting one of my idols. Sadly, this wasn’t the last time I squeed all over someone (more to come on that).

That evening, I got to have dinner with my Roguers – an amazing group of writers from Silicon Valley who I’ve loved getting to know over the past couple of years. It was a relaxing end to the day.

Day 2 – Meetings!

It was such a thrill to sit in the Random House spotlight event and hear about all the incredible authors the house puts out. I must admit to feeling a bit overwhelmed when my editor said my name and described my writing.

Later that evening, I attended the Random House cocktail party where I met so many amazing women. Here I am with Stefanie Sloane (who couldn’t have been nicer), and Karen Leabo (aka Kara Lennox – one of my favorite authors whose books are being re-released by Loveswept).

I also had one heck of a fangirl moment with Heather Graham.

Me: I’m Elisabeth Barrett. Pleasure to meet you.

Her: Nice to meet you, too. I’m Heather Graham.

Me: The Heather Graham?

Her: A Heather Graham.

My editor: Yes, she’s the Heather Graham.

Me: Oh, my God.

Then I proceeded to truly embarrass myself, but Ms. Graham was kind enough to ignore it. All I have to say to her is, “Thank you. You are amazing.”

Day 3 – Dinner, Whisky (Neat), and Bird Calls

In the morning, I attended a super workshop with the screenwriter Michael Hague. I usually don’t do so well with writing classes and workshops. I’m definitely one who learns by doing, not by listening, but Mr. Hague’s presentation was so engrossing and applicable, that I actually got a ton out of it.

The awards luncheon with speaker Robyn Carr was definitely a highlight of the week for me. So many things she said resonated, including one bit about how for young women writers who were juggling jobs and writing and family and children, it was never going to be harder than it is right now. I started crying. Yes, I admit it, okay? I cried! Twice, if you really must know.

That afternoon, I had a drink with Molly O’Keefe, author of the Crooked Creek series, which starts off with Can’t Buy Me Love. She’s a pretty amazing lady, and truly down-to-earth.

And that night, the Random House Loveswept team took us out to dinner, and I haven’t had that much fun in a long while. I got to use my piercingly loud whistle to hail a cab (like Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s), ate some delicious desserts, and, in a slightly more mellow state, showed off my birdcall prowess later that night in the bar.

Day 4 – Random House Book Signing and RITAs

Another huge highlight was the Random House book signing. I gave away all my copies – what a thrill! And everyone got a tiny Theo to take home with them. I mean, he’s adorable. Why wouldn’t you want a tiny Theo?

I spent the afternoon lounging around with Ruthie and Jessica and my awesome roommate, Suzanne, drinking tea and hiding from the sun. By evening, I was ready for some fun, so I joined all the Random House folks at their table for the RITAs. I have no pictures of that event to show you, since I was showing much more cleavage than is decent. Instead, I will give you a photograph of the Three Musketeers, the first three Loveswept Debuts – me, Ruthie Knox, and Jessica Scott.

Also, before she left, I fangirled Jayne Ann Krentz. Her books were what made me want to write. She was extremely gracious!

I could go on for another thousand words, but it’s getting late (again!), so I’d better wrap this up. As you can probably guess, I had an amazing time. There were so many other incredible things I did, so many other lovely people I met, and so much information I learned, but to write that all would take a week. (If you’d like to see my other photos, please stop by Facebook for the full album!)

I told my editor and agent I felt like Cinderella at the ball, and I really did. Everyone was so generous with their time, and the positive energy was overwhelming.

See you all next year in Atlanta!

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Living Online

Twitter. Facebook. Goodreads. Website.

More of my life is now being lived online. I spend maybe 2-3 hours a day blogging, interacting with interesting folks, coordinating writing schedules, and generally updating/maintaining my online presence. Now to some of you, this may sound like a lot of time, and to others it may sound like a little. I’d consider myself somewhere in the middle of the pack in terms of technological expertise. I’m never the first one to own the latest electronic device, but I am certainly aware they exist. Nor am I the first to start using a cool new site, but I find out eventually, and if it’s something of interest to me, I make an effort to get up to speed. That being said, I think in terms of online time, I spend less time than others in my age/demographic do. Part of that has to do with my work and family schedule (busy, busy, busy), but part of that just has to do with who I am.

When I talk to someone, I want to see their expressions. I want to see their reactions. And I want to see their body language. Online, you just can’t do that. So much can get lost in translation. And emoticons just don’t do it for me.

What is becoming increasingly clear is that while I used to completely and utterly separate the two – online and offline lives – now the lines have blurred slightly. Only slightly, because many folks I know have a clear integration of online/offline lives and I don’t have that. At least, not yet. I still have quite a bit of separation – my family is absolutely offline. So, for the most part, are my friends, although I have really begun to connect with so many people online. Even my offline interactions are enriched by strong online presences (Roguers, I’m talking about you). But more and more, I’m integrating my author presence online, and with it, comes the desire to connect – with other writers and of course, with readers. It’s a fascinating evolution and I’m looking forward to seeing how it develops.

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I got together with some writer friends yesterday. It was our first meeting of the new year, and Marina Adair had the great idea to have everyone state their writing goals for 2012. Now, I’m not typically one for making New Year’s resolutions. I’m the kind of person who doesn’t need an event or a reason to make a change or to set a goal. (Have to lose 10 pounds? Why wait? Let’s start now!) Needless to say, I’m pretty self-motivated, but there’s actually something wonderful about setting goals within a group of like-minded people.  I’ve found that hearing what others believe they can achieve helps me to push myself a little more. Plus, I’d actually given my writing goals some thought, so I wasn’t taken by surprise.

My primary goal is to finish up the Star Harbor series. This means finalizing edits of DEEP AUTUMN HEAT, turning in BLAZE OF WINTER to my editor (already done!) and completing books 3 and 4 in the series. I’m also gunning to begin my next series, and have made it a personal goal to complete at least one additional book unrelated to Star Harbor this year.

Three full books, plus loads of editing on two (maybe more) others? To some this may sound like cakewalk, but with my busy schedule, I think it’ll be tight, but doable.

What about you? What are your goals (writing or otherwise) for 2012?

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