Thinking Ahead

Angry, Frustrated WomanThe other day I downloaded a book I was waiting for (read it in two days and it was regular size – a little under 400 pages I believe – it was wonderful – thank you, Cherise Sinclair) and while purchasing it, another book caught my eye and I bought it. (Addict, right?)

I have to say the other story was interesting but the number of errors were horrendous. They were simple mistakes that could easily been caught by a critique partner. Many times throughout the book (yes, I read the whole thing – see, I do try) the author placed a “was” and then a verb like: “He was stood and waved at the girl . . .”

To make matters worse, I had download three more books (thank goodness, two were free – feeding the addiction – HELP, NANCY!) from other new-to-me authors, and OMG! I can overlook a handful of errors, but they were riddled. The agony!!

Not saying that mistakes don’t happen in traditional published books (each one of mine had one or handful – sadly), but I seriously thought about asking for a refund on one of them it was so bad and I could tell this was a beginner-author, but decided to use it as a lesson.

ALWAYS “LOOK INSIDE” BEFORE DOWNLOADING!!!

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The Ties That Bind

I don’t know if you figured it out yet, but I’m at times a little off beat.  A couple weeks ago, I came across this picture. No face or body, but it goes to prove how sexy a man’s hands and forearms can be. So freaking masculine. There is something sexy about seeing a lean, well-muscled man in cuffs. All that strength under controlpicture

A man’s fingers can tell you a lot. Calluses say the man works with his hands, digging ditches or carving wood. Long fingers are usually associated with surgeons and pianists; thick fingers with brawn and the more masculine pursuits.

I’ve never been wild about rings on men, except maybe a wedding band, but whoa! The rings in the picture say to me he’s a bit of a rebel. A biker. Maybe even a musician.

Yep. Not all men need to be military alpha males. Tied up, they become pure sexual beings. Yum.

Yes. You’re right. I have a vivid imagination.

A Snippet of CIRCLE OF DISHONOR

242916_self-portraitThe blurb for the small novella, CIRCLE OF DISHONOR.

John “Ice” Takahashi’s final job for The Circle has an unexpected hitch in it; he’s fallen for an innocent civilian and his enemies know. With his mission in a shambles, he’ll do anything to protect her, including kill. So how can a man without honor prove he’s worthy of her love?

Lena Matthews feels like she’s playing with fire by dating the mysterious Master J. He’s exotic, dangerous, and exactly what she needs in her boring life. With the bad guys bearing down on them, she discovers a whole new world of sensuality that binds her heart to his forever.

And here is the snippet from the first chapter.

Lena Matthews felt like a perverted voyeur.

Sitting in a coffee shop across the courtyard from the martial arts studio’s glass storefront, she stared at the tae kwon do class as they kicked and jabbed. Most of the students wore white pajama-like uniforms, except for the teacher. He stood out in black with his shaggy dark hair and ripped body. The man looked good enough to lick.

For the last five weeks after her tai chi class, she’d claimed the same chair and watched his every move. Behind her, others in the coffee shop chatted about the class and the mysterious man leading it.

From what she’d overheard, his name was John Takahashi, and the students called him Master J.

Master? Oh, yeah. She could imagine he’d master many things. With his strong hands and long muscled arms and legs, he likely controlled any situation or person. He could easily lift and hold her against the wall as he stroked her to a climax. She whimpered and squeezed her knees together.

A shake of her head knocked out the dirty thoughts racing through her mind. She knew better. He’d never be attracted to an ordinary person like her. The woman he chose would be totally the opposite of her: young, athletic with honey blonde hair. Lena was about as interesting as watching bread turn to toast.

Copyright 2014 Carla Swafford

I had hoped to have it out in June, but it will be later. No date at this time. Keep an eye out here. [Updated 5/31/14 – It will be out in June after all. YAY!  Probably June 23. Be on the lookout for the announcement!]

Sense of Humor

You and I know that a sense of humor is subjective. What I think is funny (love pratfalls), you might not necessarily believe the same.  Okay, here’s a commercial I came across the other day. Blew my mind! I laughed so hard, I had to share. LOL!

Hey, their publicity department is a genius. It’s so provocative that women have to be talking about it. Like me. HA!!

Another funny part is that I’m re-reading a Linda Howard book and the hero’s name is Sam.  ROTFL!  I wouldn’t mind that Sam in my pants. (Just kidding, hubby. But can I call you Sam? You can call me Angelina.)

 

 

Writing With Tequila

Margarita on Flag of MexicoHow often have you heard that writers are crazy? Often, right?

Just think, every writer lives in her head easily 90% of the time. She makes up worlds that she tries to control, at least in the beginning. Then the characters take over. They may not do what we want most of the time, but like in my case, being a romance writer, they always come around to my way of thinking. You know, that LOVE can help any person get through the rough times and appreciate the good times.

Then when a writer deals with the outside world, there are so much she can’t control (reviewers, editors, agents, sales, family, etc.) and that can drive a normal person to drink, no less an oversensitive person (most writers).

I’ve been writing for years, and I can tell you the thought of downing a bottle of tequila sounds ideal most days. Yeah. I can understand why Stephen King was an alcoholic for years.

Don’t worry about me. I’m a sober writer though certainly loony. You can only imagine how nuts I would be drunk. Then again, I love everyone when I’m drunk. But we won’t go there.

Finding Romance In Strange Places

tumblr_myfffeXLM61srko8to1_r1_500I get so tickled when I’m watching a TV show or movie and realize parts of it have many of the same elements of the books I read (romance). Especially if the show is written by a male.

Yes. I’m a bit of a female chauvinist. Sure males can write romance, but you have to remember for centuries when they did they almost always killed off one or more of the protagonists in the end, e.g., Romeo & Juliet.

Anyway, I was watching a movie that I had never expected to see romance in it. Plus it had a wonderful lesson to share. The movie? Don Jon. Yes. You read that right. The movie with Joseph Gordon-Levitt — oh, my he has grown up. He plays a young fellow who learns there’s more to fucking than the physical act.

See, Jon likes to hang with his boys, takes good care of his car, home and body, and is a player. But he loves porn more than anything. To him, porn sex is more real and satisfying than the genuine thing.

Now for the spoilers. But first, if you’re thinking of watching the movie and you should, you might want to come back and read this later or you can read on and see if you agree with what I say here.

It’s not the great movie of the decade, but it’s entertaining, and did I mention Joseph Gordon-Levitt has grown up?  Yum!download

At first I thought, oh, no, it’s going to be about sex and not good sex, and it won’t make any sense, and I will be pissed when the credits roll in. But as the movie went along, you can see there is so much going on. He’s open to change. Maybe inside he realizes he’s not happy with his life.

About halfway through the movie, he loses his girlfriend because he lies to her about watching porn. But it is an older woman who teaches him the best lessons.

One, that porn is not real. They’re actors. All this time, he’d been looking for a woman who would act like them. He wanted all the pleasure but wasn’t willing to do the same for his partner. The older woman asked him, had he ever jerked off without watching porn? He hadn’t. That gets him to thinking. So he stops watching it. Suddenly, he has more time to do other things. He calms down and starts to enjoy life more.

And then the woman tells him one really big truth. For him to enjoy sex, he needs to make love to his partner, he needs to lose himself in her.

Though the movie doesn’t end with him confessing everlasting love to the older woman, he understands by making sure his partner is enjoying sex, his pleasure will be so much more satisfying. In turn, his partner will lose herself in him. That good sex is a shared experience. Just as much as a mental thing as it is physical.

I was totally surprised by the message of the movie. A total unlikely premise saying what so many romance novels tell us.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt wrote the screenplay. The fellow does have layers. Talented.

If you decide to watch it, don’t go in expecting anything. Just sit back and be entertained. It’s funny in some parts. Tony Danza (Who’s The Boss) plays his dad and is a hoot. His mom is played by Glenne Headly (I remember her from Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, but others may from Monk). But as you can imagine, you certainly shouldn’t have children in the room while you watch it. And there’s a lot more to it than what I mentioned here.