Monday, July 6, 2020

July's Steamy nights are busy! by @BonnieEdwards #RomanceGems

July nights are certainly steamy...and the days stretch clear and lovely ahead of us. Walks on the beach are allowed! We can safely distance from each other where I live, so we're heading out often to enjoy the shells, the tide pools, and the salty breezes. I hope you find yourselves a secluded spot to enjoy the best that July has to offer.

I've been exceptionally busy lately with some secret projects of my own. Effective now, some of my titles are available more widely.

Find Body Work Here
Find Slow Hand Here

Very Sexy Beach Read!

Hot and Steamy Second Chance!

Find Whole Lot o' Love Here

Warm, secret baby second chance romance!

All of this uploading and republishing is to support my next release, Rayder's Appeal, which is the fourth installment of this series. Rayder Cole comes from a totally different branch of the family, a darker, more criminal branch. But, naturally he's totally reformed. Sort of the way Remington Steele was reformed. Honest.

Rayder's Appeal is a romantic suspense with a second chance romance.

What'a reformed con man to do when the woman he loved needs his help?

You can pre-order Rayder's Appeal here for your e-reader. It lands on July 31! Check it out and tell me what you think of this cover!

Two lucky commenters will receive an e-copy of Body Work just by commenting with their email address! Happy reading!

Don't forget to enter our Monthly Giveaway too!

Happy Reading and if you're curious about Last Chance Beach...stay tuned!

Sunday, July 5, 2020

As If July Wasn't Steamy Enough by Nancy Fraser

I love summer...the heat...the bright sun...even the humidity (nothing like a free sauna). I like being able to take my grandchildren to the lake or just walk along the beautiful Bay of Fundy.

Bay of Fundy at Low Tide. Walk on the ocean floor anyone?
It's obviously not been as easy a task this year but, with social distancing in the forefront of our minds, we've made a couple of trips to either swim, kayak, or walk on the bottom of the ocean floor at low tide.

It's really quite a spectacle to behold.

Most years summer has also meant a slowing down, a relaxing, of my writing schedule. Most years, but not this one. I'm computer-deep in three huge projects, and loving every minute of them

The first...well let's just's still a secret. At least for a few more days. Keep visiting though and you'll soon find out.

Here's a hint ....

My second project is one I've been putting off for ages. I'm about to jump headfirst into self-publishing. I've been dependent on four absolutely wonderful publishers for the past twenty-odd years. They keep me publishing, they keep me editing, and they keep me learning.

I'll still write for at least two of them as I go forward but it's time for me to grab my own destiny by the sexy bits and take control of what and when I want to publish.

The third project concerns my side business...Notes From a Romantic's Heart Author Services. While most of my business has centered around book trailers, I'm now branching out into custom covers and...heaven help formatting.

As if July wasn't busy enough already, I have a new short story releasing later this month. It's the second release in my Lusty Liaisons series from The Wild Rose Press and their Scarlet line of steamy romance. Of course, it fits right in with this month's theme of Steamy Days & Steamy Nights.
~ ~ ~

Tax consultant Katherine Weller isn't ready for a relationship after a divorce that left her empty. But when her best friend suggests she set up a sex-only date through Lusty Liaisons, a unique and exclusive dating service, she's uncertain but intrigued.

Maybe a hot romp with a sexy, younger man is exactly what she needs to take that confident first step into her new life as a single woman.

The release date is July 20th, but the story is up for pre-order on Amazon.

While you're there, check out the first story in the series, Touch Me. I'll be giving away two digital copies of Touch Me to those who comment on today's blog. Tell us what you're doing to celebrate summer and be sure and leave your email address so I can contact you if your name is drawn.

Watch the trailer for Trust Me:

~ ~ ~

Don't forget to enter our July Rafflecopter for your chance to win one of three great prizes. You can find the full details on our Monthly Giveaway page or use this Short Form. Either way...what are you waiting for?

Until I'm back again later this month, stay happy, stay healthy, stay well read and STAY COOL !!


Saturday, July 4, 2020

For The Win ... Romance Gems Contest Results by Nancy Fraser

Oops! I nearly forgot ... we've got winners!

The June Rafflecopter drawing was another great success with over 5,000 entries in our Summer Days & Summer Nights giveaway!

Our winners were:

First Prize ~ $20 Amazon Gift Card goes to Chris Hoey who visited the Romance Gems on Facebook.

Second Prize ~ $15 Amazon Gift Card goes to Katrina Dehart whose winning entry was for sharing our June video on social media.

Third Prize ~ $10 Amazon Gift Card went to Mary Brannian who wisely followed author Joan Reeves on her Bookbub page.

We've got another great drawing going this month as well. Our prizes remain at $20, $15 and $10 for one more month.

You can get all the particulars on our Monthly Giveaway page. The entry form is there as well. However, if you're in a hurry, you can use the Short Form.

Best of luck to everyone in the July drawing!

Be sure and come back every day for more opportunities to enter the contest but ... more imporantly ... to keep abreast of everything Romance Gems related.

And don't forget to check out The Legend of Last Chance Beach. You'll be glad that you did!

Until my regular posting day tomorrow, stay happy, stay healthy, stay well read.


Friday, July 3, 2020

Introverts in these times and Writing by Karen Whiddon

One of the most difficult things for introverts is socializing.  A lot of writers are introverts, preferring to hunch over a computer keyboard and live with imaginary people rather than real, breathing humans.

Guilty as charged.  With my made-up characters, I don’t have to worry that I’m not wearing the latest fashion, or that my hair looks awful, or that I’ll say the wrong thing.  I suspect (ok, I know) I’m not alone in this. 

I try, honestly I do.  But being the type of person who’d rather listen than talk, people think I’m aloof and snobbish.  And at writer’s conferences, sometimes it’s worse when you’re published.  Most times, unless someone asks, I won’t mention it.  I love to talk writing with other writers, but the instant an unpublished writer learns I’m published, they clam up.  I don’t know if they assume it’s because, being pubbed, that I know everything (I don’t), or what.

These days, with Covid-19, socializing has been put on hold.  When I do go out (only for necessities,) I wear a mask.  That surprisingly eliminates a lot of the appearance worries, at least for me.  Mask and sunglasses, no makeup - I'm good.

Writing has honestly saved my sanity though.  I've always been kind of a hermit, but this self-isolation has taken that to a new level.  I'm on deadline, working on a contracted book, and while it's a lovely distraction, it's also difficult to turn off the constant barrage of news and dissent.  In my character's world, there is no virus, no masks, just the world as it used to be before all of this.

And so I still struggle.  Though I've been published for 23 years and writing a lot longer than that, it's not how pre-published me imagined it.  I somehow thought once a writer became published, the words would always simply flow.  Hah!  I have a big secret for you – it never gets any easier. 

Sure, the more you write, the better you get.  Just like anything, practice improves your game.  And I find the more I get edited or critiqued, the more I learn my strengths and weaknesses.  I’m more easily able to fix my mistakes on my own. But I still read How to Write books.  I still attend workshops, seminars.  Because I can always get better, up my game, improve. 

I used to think the longer I worked at it, the easier it would become, but sometimes I suspect it’s the opposite.  The more you know, the more conscious you are of your mistakes and the more you are desperate to not make them.

Believe me, published authors are just as insecure as unpublished.  Maybe even more so.  The other day on Twitter, a NY Times bestselling author tweeted about how she was doing revisions and mentioned a phrase that she’d written, followed by a ‘Did I really write that?  I suck.”
My reaction was ‘Wow.  Even them.  Even those who have hit what many consider the pinnacle of writing success are insecure.  But then I realized, we’re all writers.  And in the end, we are human after all.

A reminder - my book Colton's Last Stand is out right now.  Check it out Here

As usual, we are running a lovely contest.  You can enter here:  Rafflecopter Giveaway

Also, you might enjoy watching our latest video -  Gems Video

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Legend of Last Chance Beach by @JoanReeves #RomanceGems

I desperately need a vacation. A beach vacation please. I have the perfect place picked out.

Have you heard of Last Chance Beach?

There are many legends about this beautiful island. This is my favorite one because it explains why it's called Last Chance.

Legend of Last Chance Beach

Many years ago, when travel was done by rails and sails, a pampered young woman, an acclaimed beauty, spurned each man who sought to claim her hand. Her wealthy merchant father grew angry at her refusal to marry and provide him with a grandson to inherit the kingdom he'd built.

He cajoled her with sweet words, bribed her with jewels, pleaded illness and declining years, but nothing gained her agreement to give her hand in marriage.
Angered by her obstinance, the father declared he would marry her to a man of his choosing. The spoiled beauty, possessing much of her father's attitude, declared no man would own her, but the one she chose.
Neither would yield.
One day, a young man from far away visited the father to ask for free passage on one of the man's ships so he could return to his home. In exchange for passage, the young man would use his talent as a writer to record every detail of the ship, the crew, the passengers, and the voyage.
The father left the room for a few minutes, and his daughter sneaked in to see the visitor.

He stood, tall and handsome, with a smile that showed dimples. His dark eyes bewitched her. Neither could look away.
Her heart pounded and her skin heated. She stepped toward him. He stepped toward her.

The beauty knew the man she'd waited for had appeared. Their hands touched. "It's as if I met you before—in my dreams," he murmured. They had but a minute to exchange names.
For a week, the young man dined with them each evening and told them of his family and home far away. The young couple could not take their eyes from each other. Her father finally noticed his daughter's infatuation with the impoverished young man. He leapt from his chair. "No! I forbid it." His daughter ignored him.
The father shouted at the young man. "Leave here at once." The young man stood but went to the beauty's chair. He knelt on one knee. "I'll return for you."
The father shouted for servants. "Take him to the nearest ship that sails on the morning tide." 
"I'll wait for you," the beauty shouted as she was carried away and locked in her room. She wept because she knew the young man who had touched her heart would be imprisoned in the ship's hold. He might well perish.

The daughter schemed and bribed and gathered information about the man to whom she'd given her heart.

When she was ready, she ran away and made her way to his country. He was not at the home he'd told her about. He had not returned to his family.

Filled with despair but not giving up, she searched through other towns and ports, hopped from island to island, but it was like looking for a grain of sand on an ocean beach.

Out of money, she landed on an island not far from the mainland. A newly constructed lighthouse helped guide ships into the ports that had been established. 
A minister's wife befriended her immediately and invited her to stay with them. "This fair island is a haven, my dear. We rescue people, their bodies and their souls. That's our mission—to give people another chance, perhaps their last chance—for life and happiness."
That night, the minister, his wife, and the beauty gathered in the parlor before dinner. "We have one other guest," the minister said. "He has a bit of difficulty getting around. He washed ashore here some months ago. He'd been held hostage on a ship. When the ship went into a safe harbor during a storm, he escaped and jumped overboard. You can imagine how the stormy ocean battered his body. It's a miracle he survived."
The sound of wood on wood preceded the parlor door opening. The beauty saw a crutch.

Her gaze rose and collided with the startled gaze of her beloved.

She flew into his arms, knocking the wooden crutch aside. They clung to each other, at last where each had longed to be.

Fate had provided them their Last Chance to find each other.
* * * * * 
I hope you enjoyed this little story. One day soon, maybe you can vacation on Last Chance Beach.

Author Spotlight: Judith Hudson

The Romance Gems Spotlight is shining on Judith Hudson this month. Judy has a wonderful romance series called Fortune Bay Books.

July Rafflecopter

We're starting July's Rafflecopter today! No waiting, ladies—and any gentlemen.

The dates run from July 1st through the 31st, so everyone can promote.

Watch our July Promotion Video.

Click here to enter our July Rafflecopter.

I'm off to Last Chance Beach!

Monday, June 29, 2020

I Do I Do –– by Nora LeDuc #Romance Gems

This month is famous for the theme love is in the air. The saying usually triggers many flashbacks of June weddings. This year we have had few in-person ceremonies. Too bad, because I enjoy going to them, being in them, and looking at pictures from them. The first nuptial I do remember was my aunt and uncle’s. I was the flower girl. Although I don’t recall much of the church happenings, a couple of facts stuck in my mind. My grandmother made my dress. I sat with the bridal party at their table for the reception, worried that no one would cut up my meat when                                        I was served. Apparently, I had my list of priorities even back then.

I have a lot of remembrances of my own wedding. I was nervous until I walked down the aisle and found myself surrounded by friends and family. They were nodding and smiling at me. Yes, this would be fun. For our honeymoon, my husband and I had decided to do a cross-country trip by car from New England to the west coast. We would camp along the way––although I’d never camped, I thought this would be exciting. On one of our stops, we set up outside Yellowstone. That night, it was thirty-two degrees. Neither of us slept much in our sleeping bags on the frozen ground. We both wore our coats over as many clothes as we had. But off we went touring the next day. Another evening a windstorm took down our tent while we were in it. We spent the remainder of the darkness at a rest area trying to sleep in in a Volkswagen bug.

Our destination was the happiest place on earth, Disneyland. We both still talk about the day we arrived in San Francisco, happy to rest in a hotel in a real bed. It was foggy, but we couldn’t help but focus on a bunch of men hanging out in the parking lot. They stared at us as we parked and marched inside.  I noticed the elevator’s posted inspection certificate had expired two years ago. But we got up in the morning, enthused and ready to visit Mickey. My husband went out to the car to get something and came back in to tell me someone had broken-in and taken our camping gear, his tools, and his Frye boots. They had left the tent, but we had more bad news. The pol­­­­ice were on strike. A desk clerk answered our call to the station. He said he’d mail us a form. We also learned that only renter’s insurance covered our vehicle’s stolen contents. Of course, we didn’t have this. And yes, we made it to Disney and had a fabulous experience.

Now as my husband and I travel the road of life, we still have our ups and downs, but we try to enjoy the little moments. The grass finally grew in the bare spot, we found a parking space at the beach, but best of all we do it together. If you're at a loss to find a positive, pick up a romance. They're guaranteed to lift your spirits with hope.

You can visit my page at Amazon Central to search for a book that fits you.

Take care, My Friends,
please follow me on Bookbub.


Don't forget to enter our monthly Rafflecopter drawing for some great prizes in Amazon gift cards! You can find the complete details and full entry form on our Monthly Giveaway page. Or, you can enter via the Short Entry Form.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

It's All About The Characters by @KaraONealAuthor #RomanceGems

Summer has arrived! I'm a teacher, and this season brings much needed rest and fun. Summer is also when I can read and write to my heart's content. My children are older, so I get to spend more time with books and the characters within them.

I -- much to my family's affectionate frustration -- form attachments to the people in the stories I read. I can't help it. I worry, I laugh, I cheer, and I cry right along with them. I bet a lot of you are the same.

It's hard for me to let go when I finish a book. If it makes me feel something, I think about it for several days. And, of course, I re-read my favorite parts.

As the years have gone by, I have collected books I love, which can be found here, and books I enjoyed reading, which can be found here.

My attachment to characters extends to the one's I've created, as well. It's so hard to let them go, and I have discovered their lives have continued in my mind. So....I started a blog called, "The Story Continues". Here, I will be posting extra scenes and short stories that allow these people to live on.

Isn't that wonderful? I never have to leave them! (My family will probably shake their heads at me -- fondly, of course.)

Right now, I'm posting a three part story about Elinor, a feisty and rule-breaking debutante, and Trap, a rowdy cowboy. These two formed an attachment with each other in The Cowboy's Embrace, and I had a lot of fun learning about them. I felt their story wasn't over and had to delve further into their relationship. Come visit "The Story Continues" to see how everything goes for them!

Do you have a character, or characters, who have stayed with you? Answer in the comments and two people will win a free copy of Saving Sarah or Welcome Home!

In other news, y'all might remember that I was orphaned by my publisher in March. I have two books back up with the third coming next week.

If you would like to sign up for my monthly newsletter, click here.

Saving Sarah
Historical Romance

Sarah Kerry's world is shattered when a man from her past, Liam Devlin, shows up with proof that, if shared, would send her father to the noose. In order to keep Liam quiet, she must break her young courtship with Michael Lonnigan and marry Liam instead.

Michael is crushed and angry when Sarah abruptly ends their courtship, but he knows something isn't right. He's seen the new man hanging around the Kerry family and believes the man is blackmailing the woman Michael loves. Unwilling to let her go, Michael will do whatever it takes to save Sarah and make her his own.

Welcome Home
Historical Romance

Emma Prescott, determined and selfless, flees from wealth and her murderous father, wanting the love and forgiveness of poor cotton farmer, Kyle Lonnigan.

Although Kyle refuses to forgive her for her part in his father's death, Emma stays and works her own farm. Over the next several months, Emma proves to Kyle she is not the spoiled girl he remembers.

Emma's sudden re-entrance into Kyle's life only conjures long-buried painful memories. Kyle does his best to avoid her, needing to keep the pain at bay, and stopping her from reminding him of their last moments together before bullets shattered their world. But, he is unsuccessful. The love he denies is too strong, and soon Emma and Kyle are tumbling headlong into the past and passion.

I hope y'all have a wonderful start to your summer! And remember our giveaway!

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