Welcome to Maggie McConnell w/ #Contemporary #RomCom ‘Spooning Daisy’ @GoddessFish

Today we have author Maggie McConnell visiting. Welcome!

What would you like to tell readers about yourself?

* Golden Heart nominee Maggie McConnell spent her childhood overseas as the daughter of US diplomats. Attending college in Illinois, she earned a BA in Art and an MBA while working at the local humane shelter. At 26, she packed her dog and cat into a Ford truck and drove the Alcan Highway to Alaska, where she spent 23 years exploring The Last Frontier in a single-engine Cessna. A vegan and animal rights advocate, Maggie provides a sanctuary on her Arizona ranch for all creatures great and small, but her immediate family includes dog Molly, cat Sara, horses Quinn and Teena, and an ever-growing dynasty of chipmunks. Every year, like the Gray Whale, Maggie returns to Alaska.

Today Maggie McConnell will be talking about the best piece of writing advice she’s ever received and how it helped her.
* Seven years ago, I followed advice from Jody Handley, a former editor at Warner (now Grand Central Publishing) that transformed my writing. I revised a 110,000 word manuscript into 88,000 words and in 2012, You Had Me at Habari was nominated for a Golden Heart.
* No, it wasn’t published—that’s another story—but I felt like I had found my writing sweet spot, and in 2016 achieved my initial goal of being traditionally published when Spooning Daisy was released.
* Never underestimate the intelligence of your audience. Or as Coco Chanel might say: Less is more.
* I hear the groans, see the eye rolls. Oh, that. Yes, old news, but vitally important to the flow and readability of a story. And I’m surprised when I see writers ignore it. A book is much more interesting to readers if they bring their own interpretations and action to it. When watching a movie, is it better when the character says, “I’m angry”? Or when the character acts angry, and the audience figures it out? Don’t over-explain. (Did I just over-explain?)
* Using my own writing as an example, here’s a passage before I applied Jody’s advice:
* “Lady of the manor,” Jenna mumbled disparagingly while rolling her eyes. “That and a buck will buy me gum.”
* “–If y’ prefer we can retire to the drawing room. I just thought you’d rather be in a room where Maddie’s presence is so strong. It’ll help you sort things through.”
* “There’s really nothing to sort through,” Jenna declared. “I’m going to do exactly as Quinn advised. I have no way to pay the estate taxes so I’m selling the land to Billy Hunt. He’ll relocate the distillery and if people want to work they can, and if they don’t, no skin off my nose.”
* Clara patronizingly patted Jenna’s hand. “That’s poppycock, dear. You’re just upset with Quinn–”
* “I am not upset with Quinn,” Jenna insisted a bit too energetically. Giving her hands something to do she brushed her bangs away from her face.
* “Well, y’should be. He did leave you—”

* Now the same passage, revised:
* Jenna rolled her eyes. “Lady of the manor. That and a buck will buy me gum.”
* “–If y’ prefer we can retire to the drawing room. I just thought you’d rather be in a room where Maddie’s presence is so strong. It’ll help you sort things through.”
* “There’s really nothing to sort through,” Jenna said. “I’m going to do exactly as Quinn advised. I have no way to pay the estate taxes so I’m selling the land to Billy Hunt. He’ll relocate the distillery and if people want to work they can, and if they don’t, no skin off my nose.”
* Clara patted Jenna’s hand. “That’s poppycock, dear. You’re just upset with Quinn–”
* “I am not upset with Quinn!”
* “Well, y’should be. He did leave you—”

* To Jody’s advice, I add a corollary. Envision your story as a movie and write accordingly. A few years back, I took a college screenwriting course and what I learned has elevated my dialogue. In movies, dialogue and action must carry the story—rarely are we privy to thoughts as we are in books. Learning to write effective dialogue is worth the effort.
* For summation, I hand this back to Ms. Chanel: Write shabbily and they remember the writing; write impeccably and they remember the story.*
* *What she really said: Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman. 🙂

Find Maggie McConnell here…
Facebook | Website

A look into…

~ Blurb ~

* Her mango chutney is exquisite; her blueberry sauce to die for. But Chef de Cuisine Daisy Moon is a woman without a kitchen after a “bit of trouble” at her last job. Now blacklisted from Seattle to San Francisco, Daisy’s sole job offer is from Wild Man Lodge in Otter Bite, Alaska, where the end of the road is just her beginning.

~ Excerpt ~

* “I had apple strudel. I never have apple strudel. It’s not my usual.”
* “You came here to tell me you had apple strudel?”
* “The thing is…I liked it. For a change, I mean. Once. Not every day, of course.”
* “Max–”
* “The truth is…” He stepped toward her. “The truth is…I feel bad about giving you such a hard time at breakfast.”
* “Ohhhh. This is an apology.”
* “No, absolutely not.” Max retracted the step he’d just taken. “This is absolutely NOT an apology.”
* Daisy huffed. Normally, she’d take great satisfaction in Max’s guilt and take equal pleasure in the banter that would surely follow. However, she was a woman on a mission, and she didn’t have the time, not with Otter Bite hanging by a manila envelope. “Fine. Thank you for coming here NOT to apologize and for that apple strudel thing. And–” She momentarily softened. “–the money. But I just don’t have the time for whatever this is.”
* Once again he stepped toward her. “You’re making this extremely difficult.”
* “This? This what? What am I making–“
* “This.” The word melted into her mouth.
* The two hundreds floated from her hand to the floor. Then, her arms wrapped Max’s neck, his body pressed hers, and Daisy was lost in a kiss she never expected to own.

Buy Spooning Daisy here…
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Thank you for joining us here today, Maggie McConnell! It was a pleasure getting to know you and your story.

ANNOUNCEMENT! Maggie McConnell will be offering 1) Nordstrom “Daisy” vegan leather clutch, 2) Nordstrom turtle pin, or 3) Rebecca Minkoff star pendant/necklace to 3 randomly drawn winners (US only; international winners will receive a $25 Amazon/BN GC)! So be sure to leave a comment AND use this RAFFLECOPTER LINK to enter the drawing. Also, visit the other tour stops for a greater chance of winning!

Welcome to A.C. Melody w/ #Paranormal #Erotic #Romance ‘Hearthstone Alpha’ @AuthorACMelody @GoddessFish

Today we have author A.C. Melody visiting. Welcome!

What would you like to tell readers about yourself?

* A.C. Melody lives in Washington State, is the proud mom of two amazing sons – okay, so they’re typical boys and always keep her on her toes! Stemming from a family of artists and musicians, she thrives in all things creative and would call a day without her MP3 player and coffee a day of reckoning. When she’s not writing, reading, drawing or cheering on the sidelines at football games, A.C. Also enjoys gardening, which has honed her ability to dodge raindrops into an enviable skill.
* A.C. Melody loves interacting with her fans and fellow authors. She can be reached at her email or on any of the following media sites.

Find A.C. Melody here…
About the Author Page | Blog | eMail | Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter

A look into…

~ Blurb ~

* All Reyna Daniels wants is to secure her return home to Minneapolis. The last thing she needs is to find her world completely inundated by the magnetizing, hostile Corbyn Bruschard and his group of male-model friends.
* Corbyn’s not ashamed at being everywhere, since it’s his territory, and he’s certainly not going to apologize for trying to keep Reyna safe. Especially when she’s his mate.
* With all signs pointing to an old enemy’s return, Reyna’s going to have to suck it up and face her ancient Norse heritage fast. That doesn’t mean she has to accept being mated to an Alpha who threatens all of her hard-earned independence.

~ Excerpt ~

* He visibly reined it back, calmed. “Why not just let him play hookey for the day?” He suggested, apology lacing a tone that still sounded very determined. “It’s only for a few hours, Serena.”
* “Because, it’s routine, Corbyn,” Serena countered. “His father and I have already discussed it. I will be joining Justin at school today. Auntie Rey, too, if she wants.”
* “Well, I was going to—” Reyna started, when Corbyn’s eyes flashed to hers.
* “Go to school with your nephew,” he finished for her.
* No apology this time, just straight up authority.
* “Yay!” Justin clapped, jumping out of Reyna’s arms and taking off out of the room again, which forced Serena to follow, but not before she leveled Corbyn with a stern look.
* In the silence that followed, Reyna couldn’t tamp her anger down no matter how hard she tried.
* “I don’t like bullies,” she stated clearly, looking Corbyn dead in the eyes.
* “And I don’t like having to bully,” he returned gently, sincerely. “But I will do whatever is necessary to keep everyone here safe. That includes you.”
* Reyna eyed him, unable to find the voice of reason inside her that should have been asking why he found it was his place to protect anyone in that household, when that should be her brother’s job. She turned away from him and felt his strong fingers curl under hers again. It succeeded in stopping her, but she didn’t look back this time.
* “You can’t make me the enemy already, Reyna,” Corbyn stated passionately. “I’m just getting started.”

Buy A.C. Melody’s books here…
Amazon | B&N | Red Sage Publishing

Thank you for joining us here today, A.C. Melody! It was a pleasure getting to know you and your story.

ANNOUNCEMENT! A.C. Melody will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour! So be sure to leave a comment AND use this RAFFLECOPTER LINK to enter the drawing. Also, visit the other tour stops for a greater chance of winning!

a look at Paige Warren & ‘Sergeant’s Secret Baby’ @AuthorPaigeW @evernightpub #Western #Romance

Today we have author Paige Warren visiting. Welcome!

What would you like to tell readers about yourself?

* Paige Warren spends her days weaving tales about alpha male cowboys and the women who love them. There’s nothing hotter than a man in tight Wranglers and a pair of well-worn boots. You have to admit, there’s something sexy about a man who knows how to use a rope!
* A cat lover, she has more than one furbaby running around, keeping her company in the wee hours of the morning as she tries to find just the right way to say “His skin gleamed, the early morning rays caressing his sun bronzed flesh, as he studied her from beneath the brim of his Stetson.” Or, you know, something similar.
* When Paige isn’t dolling out tons of affection on the furbabies, or slurping down a pot of coffee (Yes! A whole pot!) so she can get in her daily word count, she enjoys reading and watching movies—romances, usually.

Find Paige Warren here…
Facebook | Newsletter | Twitter

A look into…

~ Blurb ~

* When Shiloh Anderson’s ex left her stranded in a bar, with no clothes, no car, and no money, the last thing she expected was to have a one-night stand with the sexiest man she’d ever seen. But the soldier left more than just a lasting impression with her, he left her pregnant.
* Sergeant Drake Edwards is a lot of things, but he’s never been an asshole. Until the nameless woman from his one-night stand sends him an email claiming to be pregnant with his baby. Demanding a paternity test seemed reasonable enough to him, but he didn’t count on how damn stubborn she could be.
* When Drake is injured and is forced to return home, he’s brought face to face with Shiloh once more, and her beauty nearly takes him to his knees. Facing death changes a man, and Drake is determined to do whatever it takes to claim his baby—and the woman he can’t stop thinking about.

~ Excerpt ~

* Shiloh pushed open the door to the first bedroom. She flicked on the switch, winced at the bright light, and immediately shut it off. Stripping out of her boots and clothes, she face planted on the bed, bare-assed as the day she was born. After a bit of wiggling, she managed to pull the covers over her and curled up in the center of the queen-size bed. It had been a long time since she’d had a bed to herself. Maybe if she weren’t completely plastered, she’d have enjoyed it a bit more. Of course, now that jerkwad was out of her life, she was going to have tons of time to sleep by herself.
* The alcohol-induced haze made her feel like she was floating, drifting on a cloud. Her stomach no longer felt queasy. Shiloh closed her eyes and dozed. A while later, she thought she heard a noise in the room, but dismissed it as her imagination. Dallas had said she’d probably have the place to herself. And she’d remembered to lock the door. She sighed and rolled over. When the bed dipped, she bolted upright, clutching the blankets to her chest.
* “Hello?” She tried to see in the inky darkness, but could only make out the shape of a man. Oh hell, had she picked the wrong bed?
* There was a click and a lamp turned on. She squinted until her eyes adjusted. The man sitting beside her was even larger than his brother, and she hadn’t thought that was physically possible. Dark hair was buzzed short, and his profile showed a strong jaw and long, straight nose. There was an Army tattoo on one bicep. His broad back was toned, and his arms looked large enough to break someone in half. Or cuddle them really close. She gave herself a mental slap. When his blue eyes focused on her, her tongue stuck to the roof of her mouth. No one had ever looked at her like that before.
* “Looks like my brother got me a going-away present after all.” Appreciation lit his eyes as he scanned her.
* She shook her head.
* “No? Well, sweetheart, I can’t think of any other reason for a naked woman to be in my bed.”
* “I picked the wrong room,” she mumbled.
* He gave her a sardonic smile. “I know for a fact Rebecca wouldn’t approve of Dallas sharing his room with any naked women except her. So, if you were looking to trap him in some way, you picked the wrong mark.”
* “No, I … he’s helping me.”
* The man turned and braced his hands on either side of her hips, leaning in close, his lips nearly brushing hers. “What I think is that your plan isn’t going the way you’d thought it would so you’re making up stories. But I’m a pretty nice guy. I’ll give you thirty seconds to get that sweet ass of yours out of my bed, dressed, and the fuck out of this apartment.”
* She licked her lips and didn’t move.
* “Or, if you’re still here in thirty seconds, I’m going to take it as an invitation and see if those lips taste as sweet as they look.”
* Her eyes widened. He wouldn’t really kiss her, would he? She trembled a little at the thought of the powerful man caging her in putting his lips on hers. The thought of his hands on her body… Heat flushed her cheeks and spread down into her chest. She wasn’t seriously considering sitting here just to see if he’d really do it, was she?
* “Time’s up.”
* Her lips parted, but before she could utter a word of protest, his mouth pressed against hers, his tongue invading and tasting. Oh Lord! Shiloh had never been kissed so thoroughly before. His expertise was enough to make her weak-kneed and ready to beg for more. Her body burned and she dropped the blankets to reach for him. As he pushed her back against the bed, she became acutely aware of the fact he was just as naked as her.
* Was she really about to have sex with a complete stranger? She didn’t even know his name!
* He trailed hot kisses down her neck, giving her ear a nip. A shiver skated down her spine as her nipples puckered. Oh, hell yeah! He can do whatever he wants to me.

Buy Sergeant’s Secret Baby here…
Amazon | BookStrand | Evernight Publishing

Thank you for joining us here today, Paige Warren! It was a pleasure getting to know you and your story.