Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Hot off the presses...

When Marcy Fairweather decided to pick roses in her new, hot pink barely there jammies, the last thing she expected was to find herself locked out - and at the mercy of the elements.

She's a girl in need of rescue!

My latest short story, 'The Rescue' is in the October issue of New York magazine, New Love Stories Magazine, on newsstands now!

New Love Stories Magazine is published in New York, and available by subscription through the link above.


Monday, September 27, 2010

Congratulations and Commiserations

Chocolates, champagne, and congratulations to the 10 winners of the New Voices Competition - well done all on catching the editors eye and progressing through to the next round!

And chocolates, champagne and hugs to the 800 odd who didn't manage to get through to the next round. There were some fantastic entries, and great writing, and I know you must all be feeling truly gutted not to have been in the lucky top 10.  In the days and weeks to come, there's time to gird your loins and let determination and true grit take over and launch back into the pond again. But for now, take care of yourselves - it's natural to feel down and deflated. I always feel cr*p after suffering a knock, everyone does. Rant, grieve and have a cry if you feel like it.

And when you're ready, remember old Clark Gable,

Tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Go Minxes!

As you know I'm a Minx of Romance, and in the spirit of minx support, here are the entries that my fellow minxes have in the New Voices Competition over at M&B. The first round is almost over, so if you're so inclined, pop over and have a read and a vote if you like, before the finalists go into chapter 2....

Lorraine Wilson
Title: In Too Deep
Ex-army officer Hal Wright has recovered from his battle wounds but not from his survivor guilt. Asked to look out for Evie Richards as a 
favour he agrees. But she's proven she can save herself. Trusting again? That's another matter entirely...

Joanne Pibworth
Title: Sequins and Secrets
Take one burlesque star with a huge glittering genie lamp. Add one Aussie hot-shot with three sinful wishes. What do you get? The perfect recipe for a very grown up fairy tale.

Suzanne Jones
Title: Manhunt
Nicole Adams is convinced Angelo Russo is a hero. He's not so sure about that - experience has made him cautious. Can Nicole summon the courage to tell Angelo who she really is? And, if she does, will it ruin their relationship?

Romy Sommer
Title: Valentino's Angel
Sylvie and Valentino are like oil and water, but the spark between them is undeniable. When fate throws them together, they discover that the person who seems completely wrong for you might actually be completely right.

And I'm just waiting for one or two more minxes to enter, and when I do, I'll update here, so check tomorrow!

~Here's a new minx just entered~

Sri Pammi
Title: Claiming Her Italian Magnate
Alessandro Moretti has never coveted something that wasn't his. Until he meets Rachel. After a lifetime of running away from relationships, Rachel Taylor has met the man worth stopping for. Will Alessandro unlock his heart before Rachel runs again?

~And last, but by no means least~

Joanne Cleary
Title: Taming the Lion
Trent Cooper's rugby playing days are over and he needs a diversion from endless physio--enter nurse Rachel Simpson who has secrets she's not sharing ..

So that's 6 minxes out of 8. Maya and I are no shows because we can't enter under the rules.

Also, minx pal Jackie is still storming the entries with her excellent entry, Talking Dirty with the CEO - Well done, Jackie!

Best of luck all!

Friday, September 17, 2010

New Look - New Voices - And knickers

1. New Look.

A quickie post - I'm experimenting with new looks for Love and Chocolate, so I started with this one. Flying birds in the corner seems sort of Autumnal, and it sure is Autumnal in Ireland here today (or even downright wintery!). I've added a followers button to the screen, so if anyone would like to click it, go ahead!

2. New Voices.

Lots of interesting reads over on New Voices, the Mills & Boon writing contest, I'm giving a shout out to the Minxes who have entered: That's Lorraine Wilson and Joanne Pibworth, Click on their names to go to their entries if you haven't already. And if you're finding it impossible to keep it all straight, head on over to Lovely Lacey Devlin's site, and check out her wall of fame.  just click on Lacey's name to have a look!

3. Knickers.

Into the warm autumn ones. With long johns to follow in a couple of months. Ah, the changing of the seasons, eh? You may be wondering why I'm mentioning knickers in this blog post? Well, it's a Talli Roland inspired experiment - more later!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Learning from movies - Pretty Woman - the third turning point

Okay, so we have the story well underway. Edward is doing his business thing, being kowtowed to be all and sundry (he doesn't even remember the hotel manager's name). Vivienne is having a different experience. She tries to go shopping to buy a wardrobe for the week, and is sneered at by a horrible woman in a shop, who tells her 'you're obviously in the wrong place, please leave.' Everyone on the street casts her hooker outfit shocked glances, and to top it off, the hotel manager questions her, he doesn't want a hooker in his hotel.

Living in Edward's world is more difficult than she expected.

But the hotel manager has a heart of gold. He organises a shopper to help her buy the perfect outfit for that evening's meeting. Teaches her how to use the cutlery, and helps her out. So when Edward arrives that evening to take her to dinner, she looks perfect. Later Edward goes down alone to play the piano, Vivienne goes to find him - the story deepens, he is closed off, solitary. they make love.

Lots of story building goes on after this, the feel good scene where Edward takes her shopping, the polo match, where she informs a bunch of stuck up ladies that 'she's just using Edward for sex. ' Edward has changed too, wearing a tie that Vivienne bought him. They seem perfectly suited until the moment when Edward notices her talking to a business rival. He makes a critical mistake, revealing to his lawyer that Vivienne is a hooker.

The bubble bursts.

The lawyer sidles up and suggests they spend time together after Edward leaves.
Vivienne is upset. Back at the hotel, she and Edward fight.
She says,  'I've never had anyone make me feel as cheap as you did today.' Vivienne asks to be paid, Edward throws a pile of money on the bed.
When his back is turned, Vivienne leaves, leaving the money untouched.
The dynamic has changed, its no longer all about money.

Edward sees she's left the money. He follows her to the lift.

~If he wants to keep her he'll have to do more than the scant apology he offered before, he'll have to be honest. Here comes the third turning point~

He says, 'I'm sorry. I wasn't prepared to answer questions about us. I was stupid and cruel, I didn't mean it. I don't want you to go. Please stay the week.'
'Why?' Vivienne asks/
'I saw you talking to David Morris. I didn't like it.' Edward replies.
'We were just talking.'
'I didn't like it.'

There's a humourous break, while the lift arrives, complete with attendant. Vivienne doesn't want to go - so the lift doors close again.

Then Vivienne is honest with Edward. She has been staring straight ahead, but now she gazes at him.
'You hurt me.'
'Don't do it again.'

After this scene, we see Edward and Vivienne in bed. She's talking about her previous boyfriends. She explains how she became a prostitute. She was too ashamed to go home when she found herself poor and alone. Edward says 'I think you are a very bright, very special woman.' Vivienne replies 'The bad stuff is easier to believe. Ever notice that?'

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Saluting the Brave

Today I'm saluting all the brave authors who have decided to submit a chapter to the New Voices competition over in Mills&Boonland.
Many of my friends and a clutch of minxes are entering, and I wish them all well, and I'm sure Mills and Boon will find a large amount of talented writers from this competition. I'm exempt due to having sold a full length novel, and will be reading and cheering from the sidelines.
If, like me, you're reading and commenting on everyone's stories, I'd just like to remind everyone how incredibly BRAVE these authors are being. Opening up and displaying your work for criticism is a very frightening thing, and every story is someone's baby. So be honest, but be kind too. Everyone is at a different stage with their writing, and I know how I'd be quaking in my boots if it were me, to be honest.
But they've taken the first step - and publicly too - so for all you New Voices writers - CONGRATULATIONS!  You're displaying courage and determination by entering, and you're a winner in my eyes, no matter how you place!