Friday, August 15, 2014

Barbara White Daille

It is my pleasure to introduce Barbara White Daille and her new release

The Texan's Little Secret - August 2014
Coming home might be the worst decision Carly Baron has ever made. Each minute on her family's busy ranch is one minute closer to seeing him—her first love—the man who broke her heart seven years ago. While coming face-to-face with Luke Nobel again brings back painful memories, Carly quickly realizes there are other strong feelings just under the surface…. 
Luke would be a lot better off if Carly had stayed away. Being a single dad to an adorable two-year-old girl and managing the Roughneck is tough enough, but resisting the sparks that fly whenever he and Carly are together is near impossible. But first she must tell him her secret. The truth could heal their past…or forever destroy their chances of becoming a family.

Rancher at Risk - January 2014
Court Me, Cowboy - e & larger print now available
The Texan's Little Secret - August 2014

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Romance Writing Contest

2014 Hot Prospects Contest
Sponsor: Valley of the Sun Romance Writers

****Permission to forward****

Looking to sign your first book contract, switch from a small press to a large
publisher or simply explore another genre of romantic fiction? Turn up the heat
on your writing career with the Hot Prospects Contest.

GRAND PRIZE: The grand prize winner of the contest will have their entire manuscript (400 pages, Courier, 12pt, Double spaced) reviewed by two professional editors at Novel Needs

Announcement by a former winner:

“After finaling and winning the hot prospects romantic suspense category with my entry The Gilded Cuff, Lauren Plude from Grand Central made a three book offer for my series. I just wanted to extend my thanks and gratitude to your chapter for hosting the contest and bringing in such great final judges!  Thank you!” ~ Lauren Smith

Fee: $25 for Valley of the Sun RW chapter members
$30 for non-chapter members
Chapter website has PayPal capability.

Postmark Deadline: September 1st, 2014
E-Submit Deadline: Midnight, September 1st, 2014

Eligibility: The Hot Prospects Contest is open to any work that is not under contract and
is unpublished at the time of entry.

Enter: 3-5-page synopsis and up to the first 25 pages of story (30 pages max). Entry or
synopsis may be shorter, but neither may be longer than specified.

Categories/Judges: Trained judges for preliminary round

Final round judges

1) Historical/Regency

Editor—Esi Sogah, Kensington

Editorial Director - Angela James, Harlequin Carina Press

2) Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal
Editorial Assistant –Kristine Swartz, The Berkley Publishing Group

Editor—Amy Stapp, Tor /Forge
3) Romantic Suspense
Associate Editor- Lauren Plude, Grand Central Publishing 
Editor -Tera Cuskaden, Samhain

4) Contemporary Long/Single Title
Editor at Large – Sue Grimshaw, Random House
Editor—Cat Clyne, Sourcebooks

For More Information, entry form, and rules, see website at

Those entries that do not final will be returned approximately October 30th,
2014 to help those who plan to enter RWA's Golden Heart.

Lena Jakes and Lisa Heartman

Valley of the Sun Hot Prospects Co-Chairs

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Creating Characters

My husband and I weren't sure what to expect when we watched the movie And So It Goes. The fact I was dabbing at tears at the end says it all.

Any romance writer who wants to know how to take an unlikable hero through a character arc and make him likable, should watch this movie. Oren, played by Michael Douglas, is obnoxious, but we know he must have some redeemable qualities because he has a friend who understands him.

Next, we discover why he lost his compassion and can accept how this happened. Early in the film, he is thrown into a situation where he must rediscover his finer qualities with the help of a new love interest. Each step of his journey is believable. At the end, he has to prove he is a better version of himself by giving up the one goal he has worked so hard to obtain.

It is a simple formula, but it works.

Until next week,
happy reading and writing.

Tina Swayzee McCright

Friday, August 8, 2014

Déjà vu or Premonition?

Lately we have been experiencing déjà vu concerning one of our books.

If you have been following the news this past year there’s been a particular issue covered which was of interest to us (yes, there has been a ton of events happening but we wanted to discuss only one).

We’re talking about the outbreak of undrinkable water around the United States. For example, in January 2014, West Virginia was forced to deal with contamination of one of their rivers. Nine counties’ drinking water began to smell like licorice. Investigation eventually discovered a potential toxicity of Crude HCHM primarily composed of a chemical name 4-methylcyclohexand methanol had leaked from a coal company’s old storage tank into West Virginia’s Elk River, rolling down to many towns drinking systems.

Symptoms of ingesting this chemical through water soon gave way to various ailments such as stomachs, rashes, and other ailments. In time over 300,000 people were forced to go without tap water for three days.

Now, in August, we hear of cities around Lake Erie experiencing a water pollution problem as well. This time a major city, Toledo, Ohio, and parts of SE Michigan (over 500,000 people) were affected. Not only from their drinking water, but for bathing and cooking. The suspected cause...a blue-green algae growing in the usually warm Lake Erie and fed by high amounts of microcystin, a cyanotoxin. It came from excess farming runoff (nitrogen and phosphorus) and eventually drained into the lake.

When the incident happened in West Virginia, we thought…Oh, wow! How ironic…but now with Michigan and Ohio having problems, it really brought home how poignant our book Color of Dreams was turning out to be. One of the major themes in the book is about water pollution and how, if not checked, could affect people downriver who relied on waterways supplying their drinking water.

Color of Dreams revolves a young woman who is determined to stop a corporation from secretly dumping a pollutant into a river that feeds into a major water source. One stumbling block is the hero (and a former sweetheart) who recently came to work for the corporation.

Though the story also involves the premises of spiritual protection of our earth, the message to our readers was to show how important we as humans must protect our planet.

There is also another reason as to why we are so intrigued over this incident. More and more we are discovering that often our stories are premonition driven. We can’t say why or how it happens but we now believe it will eventually become clear.

Right now Color of Dreams is on sale at Breathless Press for $2.50. (50% off) It's a great chance to download your copy.  This sale won't last for long. 

Thanks for reading today,
Tia Dani

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Don't Miss the 2014 Write Now! Conference

“Mastering Crime Fiction:
A Whodunnit How-To”

.   6-9 p.m., Fri., Aug. 15  

.  8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat., Aug. 16

Meet internationally known writers at the WriteNow! 2014 Conference, to be held 6-9 p.m. Fri., Aug. 15, and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat., Aug. 16, at Embassy Suites Phoenix – North, 2577 W. Greenway Rd., Phoenix, sponsored by Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter, a group of local mystery writers.

Creating Characters
WHO Breathe:

WHERE? Getting to
the Finish Line:
Tim Hallinan

WHY? Your Plot, 
the Heart
of the Story: 

WHAT Really Works?
Optimize Writing Time,
Increase Productivity:

JENN MCKINLEY—Guest of Honor
The nonprofit organization will also honor writer Jenn McKinley as Guest of Honor during the Saturday luncheon. McKinley is author of a variety of cozy series, such as Sugar and Iced in her Cupcake Mysteries, and her London Hat Shop Mysteries, her latest Death Of A Mad Hatter.

SPECIAL OPPORTUNITY—One to one critique
Also available for a $20 additional fee this year is a one-on-one critique of the first 15 pages and a synopsis by a Desert Sleuths published member. Participants will meet the Desert Sleuths member on Aug. 15, where writers will have the opportunity to bring their work for a personalized critique, which will be sent to the writer within two weeks following the conference.

Call the Embassy Suites Hotel - Phoenix North Reservations Department at 1-800-EMBASSY and ask for the Desert Sleuths group or “SDS” discount rate of $79, which includes free parking and free internet. Guests may also book a reservation by visiting the Desert Sleuths reservations page at UKLsGl.

Conference Registration: $100 Desert Sleuths members; $120 non-members Includes the Friday night social and Saturday conference with continental breakfast, plated lunch, snacks.

Click Here to learn more about the conference.
Click Here to register for the conference

Sisters in Crime Desert Sleuths Chapter is part of an international organization that promotes professional development and advancement of women crime writers to achieve equality in the industry.

To Connie Flynn Site

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Which Dress did Fantasy Author Kathryne Kennedy Choose?

A while back I posted photos of four dresses I could choose to wear to an upcoming wedding, and had people vote on them. I was asked to post which dress I finally wore, and I'm sorry to say it wasn't any one of the original four I had chosen! (Here's the original post: )All except the black one was out of stock (and beware as well when a site says the dress is 'returnable', when they actually mean 'exchangeable'. Learn from my mistake!) I did manage to order the black one, but it was enormous. The entire bodice flopped down. So, measurements don't help a lot when ordering a dress either! The sizes vary from one designer to another, and don't be sad...ALL the dresses run small, so you'll be ordering much larger than your regular size. Anyway, I did manage to get a dress in time, as I went through another ten or so choices that were all out of stock (or couldn't be ordered in time for my wear-date. So another tip, order early. I started six months out, figuring that would be plenty of time. Silly me.) Anyway, it's with a sigh of relief that I'm sharing the photos of the dress I finally chose. I went from fairy princess to a goddess sort of look, and I'm happy to also report that I had many compliments on the dress. And that it was a lovely wedding. Since the dress was so 'flowy' my husband made me sit in the swing to take this photo, and I think he chose well.

And of course, I have to share one of the bride and groom, as that is the most beautiful, important dress!

Thank you for all your help, everyone!
My Magical Best,