RomCon Tuesday

Before you know it June will be here and it will be time for RomCon; only our most favorite event of the year!  We have been trying something new this year and rewarding one of our followers an entrance ticket to RomCon.  What do you need to do?  Well, every year we try to read books from the authors attending, just to familiarize ourselves and also find new treasures.  We announced at our Birds of a Feather event last year that whoever decides to join us in this challenge will have a chance to win.  We will be looking at who has read the most books from the authors attending and rewarding someone for all the fun they had doing it.  There is not much time left as we will be choosing the winner in April, so I hope you are busily reading your hearts out.

So which book have you picked up lately that you fell in love with for the first time?  

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RomCon Tuesday

So each week we highlight some of the authors that will be attending RomCon, this is a good opportunity to learn about new authors or catch up with ones you currently love.  Do you have plans to go to RomCon this year?  Are you trying to be one of the lucky ones to win a registration ticket from us?  If so have you found a new to you author yet that you cannot wait to meet?

Here are a few more authors to try out, and if you have already tell us what you thought.

Margaret Daley

Margaret Daley is an award winning, multi-published author in the romance genre. One of her romantic suspense books, Hearts on the Line, won the American Christian Fiction Writers’ Book of the Year Contest. Recently she has won the Golden Quill Contest, FHL’s Inspirational Readers’ Choice Contest, Winter Rose Contest, Holt Medallion and the Barclay Gold Contest. She wrote for various secular publishers before the Lord led her to the Christian romance market. She currently writes inspirational romance and romantic suspense books for the Steeple Hill Love Inspired lines, romantic suspense for Abingdon Press and historical romance for Summerside Press. She has sold seventy-five books to date.

Margaret is currently the President for American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), an organization of over 2300 members. She was one of the founding members of the first ACFW local chapter, WIN in Oklahoma. She has taught numerous classes for online groups, ACFW and RWA chapters. She enjoys mentoring other authors.

Until she retired a few years ago, she was a teacher of students with special needs for twenty-seven years and volunteered with Special Olympics as a coach. She currently is on the Outreach committee at her church, working on several projects in her community as well as serving on her church’s vestry.

On a more personal note, she has been married for over forty years to Mike and has one son and four granddaughters. She treasures her time with her family and friends.

 

Jennifer Jakes

A chronic insomniac, I got used to making up stories while I waited to fall asleep. It was a lot more interesting than counting sheep. Maybe too interesting, because I started staying awake so I could figure out “what happened” to my characters. For the sake of my health, I began writing the stories on paper – during the day. So far it’s working out pretty good:)

I’m a member of RWA and MORWA and ORA. I also have two great critique partners who I can’t thank enough. They taught me a LOT!

So grab a cup of coffee and step into the past with me.

RomCon Tuesday

Just wondering, if you had the chance to meet your favorite author who would it be?

Here are a couple of our favorites:

Elizabeth Boyle

According to her family, Elizabeth Boyle has always been a storyteller. That is if you count the far-fetched tales she used to make up about her imaginary cow, John Clapper, or the fictitious accounts she’d conjure as to who exactly broke the cookie jar. So it was no surprise to them when Elizabeth’s first novel, Brazen Angelarrived on the scene with a great splash, snagging the Dell DiamondDebut Award (snapshot of the winning moment at left) and went on to win the Romance Writers of America RITA for Best First Book.

Since then, Elizabeth has penned eighteen more adventurous and romantic novels, with thirteen of them hitting bestseller lists including the New York Times (Confessions of a Little Black GownLove Letters from a Duke and Hero, Come Back) and USA Today (including How I Met My CountessMemoirs of a Scandalous Red Dress, and His Mistress By Morning). In addition, Elizabeth has been nominated for the RITA twice more since 1997 (This Rake of Mine and His Mistress by Morning), won the Romantic Times Love and Laughter Award, a Career Achievement Award for Innovative Historical Romance, and been nominated for the National Reader’s Choice Award, numerous Romantic Times awards, the Bookseller’s Best award, as well as other honors. 17 of her 18 novels have been Romantic Times Top Picks. Elizabeth has been interviewed by The Chicago Tribune and Booklist, and seen her books mentioned in Writer’s Digest and The Economist. Elizabeth is a popular speaker, and was honored to keynote the Portland Reader’s Luncheon and the Richardson Library’s Buns and Roses Reader Tea, both in support of literacy charities.

Her numerous fans call her work “fast-paced” and “tremendously fun,” with the most common complaint being that her books have kept them up too late at night reading. Her most recent Avon titles include the back to back releases of How I Met My Countess(January 2010) and Mad About the Duke (October 2010) and her most recent book, Lord Langley is Back in Town (June 2011).

Prior to publishing, Elizabeth discovered that aspiring writers still had to eat and pay their rent while following their muse. Working as a paralegal, she compiled case profiles on insurance fraud (arsons, faked burglaries, faked accidents) and police misconduct cases (assaults by officers, shooting inquests). Eventually she was offered a position with a software firm as a paralegal handling software piracy cases in North America. During her time “pirate hunting” she participated in civil and criminal seizures with the FBI, US Customs and the Canadian RCMP. After years of these modern day adventures, it is no wonder that counterfeiting, forgery and espionage find their way into her page-turning tales of romance, which she now writes full-time.

In addition to writing, Elizabeth loves gardening, knitting, reading, traveling, exploring tea shops and trying to find low-fat recipes that taste like something her grandmothers would have made. When not writing, Elizabeth chases after her two active sons, or as she likes to call them, her “heroes-in-training.” She lives in Seattle with her husband Terry, and considers her hectic life the best slice of heaven one could ever wish for.

 

Elizabeth Hoyt

Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times,USA Today, and Publishers Weeklybestselling author of historical romance, including reader favorite, The Raven Prince.

Elizabeth was born in New Orleans but grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota. She was fortunate to be able to travel extensively as a child, visiting St. Andrews, Scotland; Germany; France; and Belgium. She spent a year in Oxford, England and was a summer exchange student to Kawasaki, Japan.

Elizabeth has a BA in anthropology from the University of Wisconsin at Madison and, as a result of having no clue what to do with her life thereafter, a career history as a barista, a (terrible) sales clerk, a Wisconsin Revenue Service data entry slave, and an archeological field work grunt. Fortunately, Elizabeth married relatively young and produced two children who kept her busy until her mid-thirties. At about this time, when her youngest was entering Kindergarten, Elizabeth’s mother hinted that perhaps Elizabeth should get a Real Job.

Sadly, Elizabeth was so delusional she thought writing a romance novel might qualify as a Real Job.

But! Five years later, to everyone’s surprise, she actually sold that romance novel (The Raven Prince) and began a rather successful career as a Romance Novelist. This was most fortunate since Elizabeth is singularly unqualified to do anything else but Make Up Stories.

Since then Elizabeth has written eleven books to critical acclaim: The Prince Trilogy (The Raven Prince, The Leopard Prince, and The Serpent Prince); the Legend of the Four Soldiers series (To Taste Temptation, To Seduce a Sinner, To Beguile a Beast, and To Desire a Devil); and the Maiden Lane series (Wicked Intentions, Notorious Pleasures, Scandalous Desires, and the upcoming Thief of Shadows.) All of Elizabeth’s books are set in eighteenth century England and all feature a fairy tale story that serves as a foil to the main story.

Elizabeth lives in central Illinois with a trio of untrained canines and a garden in constant need of weeding.

RomCon Tuesday (Monday)

**I know the post says RomCon Tuesday however because Valentine’s Day is on Tuesday and we have a fun post for it**

There are quite a few authors attending RomCon this year that are new to me, it has been fun reading all kinds of books that I probably would not have picked up otherwise.  Of course there are tons of authors that we are very familiar with and super excited to see, hear are a few:

Melissa Mayhue

Faced with telling you all about me, I realized…I’m not very interesting! So, rather than bore you with useless trivia about my life, [I was an only child, born and raised in Texas], I’ll share the story of how I came to be a writer.
First and foremost, I am a reader. Some of my best memories are of my mother taking me to the local library every week during the summer to check out armloads of books. I could hardly wait to get home, dive into the stories, and get lost in a whole new, wonderful world. My prized possession as a girl was an entire shelf of Nancy Drew Mysteries. I adored Nancy Drew.
My first experience with writing a book came at age 13. I developed a fascination with genealogy and, after spending time visiting older relatives to gather information, I found I had all sorts of wonderful family stories. What on earth could I do with all those [mostly false] tales? Why, I’d write a sweeping, 600+ page novel of course! A tale of life through several generations, spanning two centuries. It would be fantastic.
Armed with purpose and enthusiasm, I sat down at my big typewriter, [yes, I'm dating myself...typewriter, not keyboard], and began Page One. Hours later I had almost completed two whole pages. [double spaced, of course]. Hmmmmm… An entire day and I had barely two pages to show for it? [rather boring pages, at that].
Maybe I wasn’t cut out to be an author after all.
In spite of my writing setback, I retained my passion for books. I simply concentrated on reading other people’s books. Lots of books. All kinds of books. Until I discovered Romance. Finally, a world I could escape to where I knew I’d always find a happy ending! I devoured them, literally reading hundreds.
Years passed before the writing bug seriously bit again. I was working in downtown Denver and, as so many writers advised, every lunch hour I took my pad and pen [actually, I preferred a pencil] and headed for my favorite coffee shop to spend my 50 minutes writing.
Unfortunately, my favorite coffee shop was in a book store. Invariably, I’d end up writing nothing. There were too many fascinating people to watch, too many interesting conversations to hear and then, of course, there were all the books to distract me.
Still, I had these two characters living in my head, wanting their story told…
Then came the summer we took our second family vacation to Scotland. On the Black Isle [ which isn't black or even an isle ], near the pretty little town of Rosemarkie, we parked our rented car and hiked back into a magically beautiful placed called Fairy Glen. Resting on a large rock at the edge of a waterfall and pool, lulled by the lush nature of the setting, I suddenly realized THIS was the place for Cate and Connor. For the remainder of that trip, I’d catch glimpses of them, in a castle, standing at the foot of a crumbling staircase, or riding through a highland meadow.
Once I finally sat down at my keyboard and decided the time had come to give those two life, I found, amazingly enough, they weren’t the only characters running around in my head. There were a bunch of them… all clamoring for their own turn!
My GOAL, as a writer, is to give each of those noisy characters a life in their own story.
My HOPE, as a writer, is that you’ll enjoy reading their stories as much as I enjoy writing them!
 

Gabi Stevens

My earliest memory is from before I turned three. I walked to the corner store and bought a pack of gum…for five cents. And I would play with my neighbor, Conchita. I had my third birthday party in the new house, which I also remember, and Conchita was not my neighbor any more. My next memory…
What, you don’t need a memory by memory playback? I don’t blame you. So here are the highlights:
I was born in Burbank, California, the oldest child of Hungarian immigrants. Except during that early episode with the gum, I lived mostly in the San Fernando Valley (Yup, I’m a “Valley Girl.”). At fifteen, I attended boarding school…for the education, not because my parents wanted to get rid of me. Then came college in New York and California, with a year long stint in Göttingen, Germany. Met my husband at UCSD, graduated, then he took me to Illinois where we both continued our education—me in German, he in Robotics. He’s a doctor now, but not the real kind. (Just kidding, honey. You know I love you)
I got my Masters in Teaching German, and when he finished, we moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where I had twins and a spare. We’ve been there ever since.
I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t telling myself stories, so it’s pretty surprising that I found writing so late. I am not in that group of writers who wrote down their stories from the age of six. I didn’t start until after my twins were born and I realized if I didn’t do something for myself, my brain would turn to Jell-o. So I wrote down one of those stories I was telling myself, and, voila, a career was born.
I have to supplement the writing with a day job. I teach eighth grade gifted language arts and literature, where I subject my students to Latin, the English language, and other tortures. I don’t have many hobbies: I kill most plants, so gardening is out; I’m an adequate cook—I have burned water—but not great or creative; don’t do needlework, although I tell myself I’ll get back to my cross stitch project that remains unfinished seventeen years later; I used to play volleyball until my knees couldn’t take it any longer (I miss volleyball); I don’t travel as much as I would like; and I will learn Italian before I die. I love games (Don’t play with me unless you are serious—I’m not nice) and have even appeared on the Family Feud and Jeopardy! I read like crazy and enjoy lots of movies.
But my greatest joy (other than the family of course) is writing. I love to put a story to paper (OK, to keyboard) and escape to my own world. And I am lucky enough to share that world with my readers. So thanks for coming along on the journey with me.
 

Teresa Medeiros

New York Times bestseller Teresa Medeiros wrote her first novel at the age of twenty-one, introducing readers to one of the most beloved and versatile voices in romantic fiction. She has appeared on every national bestseller list, including the New York Times, USA Today and Publishers Weekly lists. She currently has over seven million books in print and is published in over seventeen languages.She was chosen one of the “Top Ten Favorite Romance Authors” by Affaire de Coeur magazine and won the Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award for “Best Historical Love and Laughter”. She is a seven-time Rita finalist, two-time PRISM winner, and two-time recipient of the Waldenbooks Award for bestselling fiction.

Teresa is a charter member of the Romance Writers of America Honor Roll, Kentucky Romance Writers, and Novelists, Inc. She lives in Kentucky with her husband and her cats Willow and Buffy the Mouse Slayer. THE DEVIL WEARS PLAID, her 20th novel and most recent New York Times bestseller, was released in August 2010. Her first contemporary women’s fiction novel GOODNIGHT TWEETHEART, a book about a man and woman who meet and fall in love on Twitter, was released by Gallery Books in January 2011.

RomCon Tuesday

My how Tuesday seems to come around so quickly!  This weeks highlight author will be a new one to me but I will not be stopping with just the one book, I can’t wait to get my hands on more.

Bernadette Marie

Bernadette Marie has been an avid writer since the early age of 13, when she’d fill notebook after notebook with stories that she’d share with her friends.  Her journey into novel writing started the summer before eighth grade when her father gave her an old typewriter.  At all times of the day and night you would find her on the back porch penning her first work, which she would continue to write for the next 22 years.

In 2007 – after marriage, filling her chronic entrepreneurial needs, and having five children – Bernadette began to write seriously with the goal of being published.  That year she wrote 12 books.  In 2009  she was contracted for her first trilogy and the published author was born.  In 2011 she (being the entrepreneur that she is) opened her own publishing house, 5 Prince Publishing, and has released contemporary titles and will begin the process, eventually, of taking on other authors in other genres.  Also in 2011 she became co-owner of Seven Songs Press and will release a novella as part of an anthology with other very talented authors in November 2011.

Bernadette spends most of her free time driving her kids to their many events.  She is also an accomplished martial artist, working her way to her second degree black belt in Tang Soo Do.  An avid reader, she enjoys most, the works of Nora Roberts and Karen White. She loves to meet readers who enjoy reading contemporary romances and she always promises Happily Ever After.

RomCon Tuesday

Time for our weekly RomCon check in.  How is your reading going?

I have decided that there are just certain genres I cannot get into, I am sure everyone is the same.  That is one of the things I enjoy about our reading challenge, it has given me the opportunity to discover authors I might not have picked up otherwise. Some I have come to love, others not so much, but I have been giving everyone a chance.

Here are a few more authors we will get the chance to meet in June.

Alexandra Ivy

I’m not exactly sure when I fell in love with books.  Probably on my mother’s knee listening to her read Dr. Seuss to me.  I do remember that I was barely old enough to cross the street by myself when I discovered the delights of the local library.
Could anything be more wonderful than spending summer days surrounded by stacks of Nancy Drew mysteries?  Over the years I fell in love with Victoria Holt, Jane Austen, Agatha Christie, and J.R.R. Tolkien just to name a few.  I read poetry, essays, biographies, and plays.  In fact, I read anything I could get my hands on.

Years later (no, I’m not admitting how many) I’m still an avid reader, and my tastes are still as varied as they were in my youth, which I suppose helps to explain why I enjoy writing regency historicals under the name of Deborah Raleigh, as well as my contemporary paranormals as Alexandra Ivy.
For now that is enough to keep me busy, but who knows what the future might hold!

I do have a few other loves in my life besides reading and writing, the most important being my unbelievably patient husband, David, and my two sons, Chance and Alexander.  Without their constant support and belief in me, I never could have been able to follow my dreams.  They are truly my heroes.

 

Lynn Rush

Hi. I’m so glad you stopped by. I hope you leave a few comments so I can learn more about you!

I write Paranormal Romance and my first novel, Wasteland, released September 2011 from Crescent Moon Press and Awaited(Wasteland #2) will release May 2012.

I’ve been married to my soulmate, Charlie, for 15 years. We’re sports junkies and spend most of our time on our road bikes.

 

RomCon Tuesday

It is time once again to spotlight some of the fabulous authors coming to RomCon.  Don’t forget to keep track of all the books you are reading as one lucky winner will be receiving registration to RomCon; you can do this on the spreadsheet or you can join us over at Shelfari where you can actually post the books you have read and share some good suggestions.

Now on to our authors of the week:

Kimberly Killion is not only a fabulous author but I am lucky enough to have her as my cheerleader in the next Romance Biggest Winner 2 competition.  She is such an inspiring person and I look forward to the next few months getting to know her more.  I decided to pick up her newest book My Cursed Highlander and so far it is great, I am having a hard time putting it down and getting work of any sort done.  Here is a little more about her:

Do you remember the teacher who made a difference in your life?

I do. His name was Dr. Krantz. He was my mythology teacher. While attending college near Kansas City, I was working toward a Bachelor in Fine Arts when I discovered I had to take an elective. I pulled “Mythology” out of a hat, and it was there I found Dr. Krantz. The book wasn’t Romeo and Juliet, as you might suspect, but Dante’s Inferno-a Divine Comedy indeed. Talk about an intriguing read.

Sure, I bought Cliffs Notes—I was eighteen. With a three-hour block of nude figure drawing and rocks to sculpt, who has time to read? Well, I read it. Cover to cover, after which, I read Oedipus, The Iliad, The Odyssey, and a few other Greek tragedies.

I walked away with, not only an “A” in the class, but a love for all things tragic, passionate, and historic. I did receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, with which I have enjoyed a rewarding career as a graphic designer for more than fifteen years. I moved on from the ancient authors of yesteryear and became engrossed in the writings of Julie Garwood, Teresa Medeiros, and Gaelen Foley — just to name a few.

Although an artist by profession, I traded my paintbrush for a pen about ten years ago. After writing and illustrating a mystical world of fairies, I began to explore the realm of romance novels. Currently, I work part-time as a College Instructor in St. Louis, Missouri. It is here that I bring my passion for words and the arts into the grueling boredom of lecture to spark the lives of hundreds of young minds.

I reside in Illinois with my two children and a gaggle of cats. I’m a proud member of Romance Writers of America® and Missouri RWA. In addition, I am a member of Hearts Through History as well as PASIC and Novelist, Inc. It is within these organizations where I have found a great deal of support, along with a wealth of knowledge from seasoned authors, workshops, critique groups, and friendly camaraderie.

Every day is a new beginning, as I discover a fascinating character in every person I meet. With every puckered brow or mischievous smile, there’s a hero evolving and a heroine fast at his heels.


Hillary Seidl  I have not had the pleasure of reading a book by Hillary yet but I will be changing that this week.

 I’m an avid reader of romance (since I could get away with it!) and a writer of contemporary/paranormal romance.  I start to freak out if I don’t see a paranormal or ghost hunting show in over a week.  

When I was a little girl, my parents owned a restaurant that was in a haunted building.  It was so amazing to see things happen right in front of me that could not be explained!  The situation flamed my love for the paranormal.  

When I was a teen I wrote a series of mini books.  As an adult, I worked a series of jobs, I never found anything that spoke to my soul.   

I will be honest… I’m a huge fan of Supernatural!  Hot guys solving paranormal mysteries?  I’m there!  That’s when I started writing fan fiction.  Fan fiction is very fun but something was missing. I missed the romance! That is when I started my writing journey.

 More than anything in this world I just want to write.  I am married to my wonderful husband Aaron, who is a Chef in Boulder,Colorado and we have two wonderful miniature dachshunds, Leela and Fry, who are both clever as they are long.  

 

Happy Reading Everyone!

RomCon Tuesday

It is time for our Tuesday post which will be dedicated to RomCon and all the authors who will be attending in June.  This week I have chosen to highlight a couple new to me authors that I have tried.

Rebecca Forster

I just finished Hostile Witness (which happens to be free so check out her site) and it was not bad.  I usually don’t go for the lawyer/crime type books so a little out of my element but I would pick up another one sometime.   Here is a little about Rebecca.

As an advertising executive I marketed a world-class spa when it was still called a gym, did business in China before there were western toilets and mucked around with sheep to find out how my client’s fine wool was made. Then I wrote my first book. . .
On a crazy dare, I tackled a project that would prove to be my passion – I wrote my first book. Though I had never written before, I was lucky enough to sell that novel.  Many books later – including the bestselling legal thrillers, the Witness Series, and the USA Today top seller Keeping Counsel - writing is still the most exciting thing I have ever done. Now, with the emergence of e-readers like Nook, Kindle, Kobo and IPad, the world of publishing is getting even more exciting.
I earned my B.A. in English at Loyola, Chicago and my MBA at Loyola/Marymount in Los Angeles. Who knew that after all that studying I would be writing fiction fulltime? Today, instead of putting on a power suit in the morning, I pack up my computer and head out to Coffee Cartel. This is a wonderful neighborhood coffee shop where I am welcome to write as long as I want.
When I’m not at my favorite table next to the suit of armor, I am speaking to philanthropic and writers’ groups about the brave new world of publishing for Kindle, Nook and other e-readers, teaching at UCLA Writers Program or having a ball at middle schools teaching with 
The Young Writers Conference.
I’m one of six kids and my brothers and sisters are split between Missouri (where I was born) and California (where I grew up). My mother lives close and at 86 she can outrun me. Take a look at the 
photo gallery to see some pictures of our adventures. I don’t know which I loved more, Alaska or Germany.
Traveling is one of my favorite things  but  when I’m home I  love cooking, quilting, movies (especially zombie movies), the theater and, of course, reading. It will probably come as no surprise that mystery, suspense and thrillers are my favorite novels.  A tomboy at heart, I’ve played in a local tennis league for the last 14 years. My favorite shot? The backhand volley at the net.
I have been married for 34 years to a man I met in high school but don’t jump to any conclusions. When Harry met Sally could have been our story. He is a superior court judge and helps me when I need to research crucial scenes for my legal thrillers – I always have to fix a special dinner though to get the inside scoop on things.
I’m am the proud mother of two grown sons. Alex is in film and Eric is a playwright now serving in the Peace Corps in Albania (we’ll be traveling to his village soon and I can’t wait). Both are exceptional young men and I am proud that they are following in my creative footsteps. 

Holly Jacobs

I just picked up A One-of-a-Kind Family yesterday and so far it is really good, can’t wait to finish it.  Here is a little about Holly. 

 

I am first, and foremost, the mother of four of the most fantastic kids you’ve ever met. They keep me busy, make me crazy and add more joy to my life than I could ever have imagined (and they’re working on adding some grey hair). My husband is my strongest supporter, my best friend and, well, just a great guy! I’ve yet to write a hero who is half the man he is.

 

I absolutely love ice cream, seagulls and thunderstorms. Living in Erie means I’m on the shore of one of the great lakes…there’s nothing like a summer sunset! My love of Lake Erie is probably why you’ll find so many beaches in my books…it’s also why I went with a beach theme for my website! There’s just nothing better!

 

I’ve been in love with books, with words, ever since I can remember. I read JRR Tolkien’s Hobbit in third grade. How much I understood, I don’t know, but I fell in love with Middle Earth and visited often. Heinlein, Lewis and Bach all soon joined him on my list of must read authors. Trixie Belden, The Black Stallion, Little House on the Prairie . . . the list goes on and on. It was rare not to find me with a book in hand!

 

From that love of reading I seemed to naturally progress to writing. I’ve toyed with a little of everything, but I must confess, though I “found” romance a little later in life, I fell head over heels for the genre. When I began writing, it seemed like the right place for me to be.

 

Why? Because it’s a genre about people, about relationships. I can add in the sci fi, the fantasy, the suspense, the mystery. I can add in any plot, but it all boils down to the people and that is why I fell for it. Watching two characters overcome the odds, overcome themselves . . . what could be more satisfying?

Have you had the chance to read one of these authors?  If so what books and what did you like, or dislike?

 We have been asked about keeping track of the books you read and we are currently finishing up a spreadsheet that you can use.  You can also go to Shelfari where you can keep track and give recommendations.  Can’t wait to start hearing how everyone is doing out there.

   

RomCon Tuesday Kickoff

As most of you know we here at The Book Reading Gals are big supporters of RomCon, which is quickly coming up once again June 22-24, and love to challenge ourselves and you each year.  Well this year is no different and we are going one step above that and will be giving away 1 general admission ticket to the person who reads the most books written by the attending authors.  One of the things we also like to do is spotlight those authors, which gives us all a chance to get to know them a bit better, so from here to June, Tuesdays will be dedicated to RomCon.   We value your opinions, so if you have read something from the spotlighted authors please let us know, give suggestions on what might be a good book to read for the challenge, or if you have not read them would you be willing to give them a try.

Here is the list of authors that have signed up so far.  As you can tell we have a lot of reading to do, so everyone start getting out those electronic devices, start hitting the bookstores, or pick up those library cards, the journey has begun.

Alexandra Ivy
Elizabeth Hoyt
Jill Shalvis
Julia Quinn
Kat Martin
Teresa Medeiros
Deeanne Gist
Rebecca Forster
Patricia Rosemoor
Barbara Westbrook
Bernadette Marie
C.R. Moss
CJ Snyder
Cynthia Woolf
Deeanne Gist
Delilah Marvelle
Elizabeth Boyle
Hilary Seidl
Holly Jacobs
Isobel Carr
J.L. Wilson
Jade Lee
Jennifer Zane
Jory Strong
Kendall Grey
Kimberly Killion
Lani Rhea
Linda Conrad
Lizzie T. Leaf
Lori Corsentino
Lynda Hilburn
Lynn Rush
Margaret Daley
Mary Alice Pritchard
Maureen O. Betita
Melissa Mayhue
Melody Fyre
Michele Callahan
Olivia Cunning
Pamela Morsi
Patricia Rosemoor
R.M. Sotera
Rebecca Forster
Rebecca Grace
Shannan Albright
Teresa Medeiros
Terry O’Dell
Tiffany James
Tiffany Snow
Vicki McDonough

RomCon Tuesday

It is almost time for Mel and I to board a plane and leave the sweltering heat of Vegas to spend 4 days in the Crowne Plaza in Denver with all of our RomCon friends. We went shopping on Saturday for cute shoes for the Western Night Dinner, and I do have to say that our shoes are cute and the vest that Mel will be wearing is super cute.

We are getting our swag together for the event that we are hosting Birds of a Feather, and let me tell you it is good.

We plan to have lots of giveaways when we get back so get ready to comment to win.

Next week we will do the wrap up of our reading challenge, and then on Thursday we board the plane :)

 

RomCon Tuesday

Well, Heather talked last week about RomCon so I guess it is my turn today.

I clearly remember her calling me all excited about signing up to judge a book contest and I had to find out what this was for and get involved. That is when we learned about RomCon. Within days we were planning on attending. Than we had this brilliant idea; let’s try to read something from all the authors coming. Have to admit did not make it through the whole list but I fell in love with some authors I had never heard of before. My biggest fangirl moment was meeting Anna Campbell who is the nicest lady ever, just so happened I not only ran into her in the hall at midnight but we were able to go in the back and help her organize her giveaways. That is when we also determined there would be no sleep for us for the next few days.  That same night is when we started creating our business cards in the hotel computer room at 2 in the morning, they were great if I do say so myself. There were so many other wonderful moments and so many memories made. Decision was made we will be there every year!

Challenge did not go as well this year either but it has still been tons of fun – tip for next year, start reading in August as soon as we leave to come home. Now that the first year is done ,with the stress of getting to everything and seeing everything, this year is just for fun and getting to know people. FYI, it might come as a surprise to some, but I am a little shy and I know there are more of you out there so let’s get out of our comfort zone and have a good time! See you all in a couple weeks!

Melanie

RomCon Tuesday…Heather’s thoughts on RomCon

With less than a month till RomCon I thought that it would cool if Mel and I told you why we love RomCon and will always support it. It was a year and half ago when I got an invite to be a judge in a new award the Readers Crown Award. I mentioned it to Mel and she did some research about it and found out that it was a brand new convention. We loved the concept and the fact that some of our personal favorite authors were going to be there and we were all on board.

When we went last year we didn’t know a single person and had told Michelle and Elaine that we would help out this lead to us hanging with some amazing authors..Julia Quinn, Anna Campbell and Elizabeth Hoyt.

That week-end was one of the best week-ends we have ever had. When we sat down to talk to people we could talk about our favorite books and characters they all know exactly who and what they are talking about, and we had great conversations about them. We hung out in the bar with Lila DiPasqua, Jessa Slade and Delilah Marvelle to name a few…ate dinner with Carly Phillips, Janelle Denison and Erin Kellison.

And then there was the swag…oh the swag, books books and more books. What more can two book lovers want, authors we love, people that speak our language and free books. We were in seventh heaven. When we left that week-end we knew that we would be back.

As soon as the dates were announced for this year I started planning. I informed my family that I would be gone that week-end and then I started preparing. There was a lot of new authors coming that I didn’t know which meant more books to read. I then started talking on twitter about RomCon and how much I was looking forward to it.

This year I am super excited to return because not only are we going to reconnecting with authors that we connected with last year, but also I get to meet in person the people that I have come to know on twitter, get to know new authors and meet new people as well.

When it comes down to I think the reason that I will always support RomCon is because it is a setting where we get to sit around and talk to our favorite authors and like minded readers in a relaxed atmosphere. For as long they are doing this I will be attending.

RomCon Tuesday – Carly Phillips and Janelle Denison

Two of the funnest people that we met last year was Carly Phillips and Janelle Denison. They were always having so much fun and I even managed to sit next them for dessert and Janelle is very serious about her chocolate, at least I think it was her that tried to steal my chocolate cake. As we are heading into the final days of our author highlights we knew that we wanted them to be one of our last highlights as they are  coming back this year are a riot to be around. So without further ado we turn the site over Carly and Janelle…

A Look at RomCon 2010

By Carly Phillips and Janelle Denison

 

From Carly:

Why would I fly across the country (I live in New York) to Denver to attend a conference that’s never been done before? I suppose the enthusiasm of the RomCon coordinators was infectious.  They were determined to put on the best reader conference ever.  Flying west also meant I could spend time with my best friend and fellow writer, Janelle Denison.  Combined, the two reasons had me packing and heading west!

After I made the decision to attend, my book LUCKY BREAK was a Reader’s Crown Award finalist.  Since the contest was judged by readers, this made things twice as exciting for me.

I wasn’t sure what I’d find in Denver.  There was a chance to catch up with authors I hadn’t seen in awhile but once I arrived, I realized RomCon was so much more.  This conference was all about readers.  It was small and intimate and you could sit down anywhere with anyone in the lobby and end up having a long conversation, from readers who wanted to talk books, to the one and only Christine Feehan!

The conference also tuned me in to the value of Twitter.  Yes, I was already tweeting but one day, I looked there to find someone had taken a photo of me – Carly Phillips eating breakfast.  I didn’t recognize the poster, we joked about me having a stalker, but when we finally met in person at the booksigning, I ended up with someone I still talk to over Twitter to this day and who I recently saw at the Romance Writer’s of America conference in NYC.  Thanks to RomCon, I connected with real romance readers who love books as much as I do!

I did an intimate chat and was able to find out what it is readers love about my books as well as what other genres and authors they like to read.  I sat on a panel with other authors, the pre-set subject being “How Can Readers Help their Favorite Author” and it was interesting for us to have a chance to talk and explain how important readers are to the success of a book, how much influence they have due to word of mouth, especially in this day and age of social media.  It’s a give and take relationship that authors and readers have, and RomCon helps foster that back and forth!

The weekend ended with me giving the Contemporary Author Closing Speech on Sunday which was such a huge honor.  I can honestly say that RomCon made a huge impact on me as an author.  So much so that I’m attending again this year (with Janelle Denison, of course!).  Both of my books KISS ME IF YOU CAN and LOVE ME IF YOU DARE finaled in the Reader’s Crown again (though this year the gorgeous trophy goes to the beautiful and talented Julie James), that’s okay.  Because did I mention I won the Reader’s Crown Award in Contemporary Romance last year?

I can’t wait for the end of the month to attend RomCon again this year!

From Janelle:

When I decided to attend RomCon last year, I was initially excited about one thing . . . spending time with my best friend,and NYT Bestselling author, Carly Phillips.  We only see each other a few times a year, and it’s usually at a conference.  I had no idea what to expect of RomCon, being that it was the first year, so I went into the new experience with my mind open to all possibilities.  I knew I’d have a good time, but wasn’t sure what to expect on an author level.  I have to say, by the end of the week, I was a HUGE RomCon fan!

Unfortunately, when I’d attended last year I hadn’t had a book out in two years.  I wasn’t sure that readers would even remember who I was.  But as soon as I had my name badge on, readers DID recognize me, and most often would mention my “Wilde” books and asked when they could expect the next book.  That convinced me right then and there that romance readers are dedicated people when it comes to authors they love to read.  It doesn’t matter how much time has passed between books – they don’t forget and will wait for years to read a new book by that author.

RomCon, unlike writer’s conferences, focuses solely on the readers that attend.  The events and workshops are geared toward benefiting readers, to educate them on different genres, to get their opinions and input on the romance industry, to find out what they love about romance novels, and what they’d like to see changed.  As an author, I really enjoyed hearing the reader’s perspective on the industry, and it helped me, as an author, to really think about the ways I could improve my own stories.

One of the things I loved the most about the conference was that it felt “intimate”.  I wasn’t overwhelmed by the sheer number of attendees – and that allowed me to meet new readers, and interact with friends I’d made online, but hadn’t yet met in person until RomCon.  The hotel wasn’t overly-huge, and it was so nice to see so many friendly faces on a daily basis.

Undoubtedly, RomCon has set the industry standard for reader focused conferences, and they offer something for every romance reader out there.  If you love reading romance novels, (no matter the genre), you will find authors you love, enjoy fun and informative workshops, chats, and events, and be surrounded by people (readers and authors alike) who “get” why romance novels are so awesome!

This year, I’m attending RomCon with a new series on the shelf, and I’m looking forward to seeing old friends, and meeting new ones.

From Carly and Janelle


If you’re thinking about attending RomCon, DO IT – you’ll be so glad you did and we can’t wait to see you there!

Carly Phillips is the New York Times Bestselling author of over 30 romance novels with contemporary characters and plotlines that today’s readers identify with and enjoy.  Carly is a stay at home mom of 2 daughters (now almost old enough to read her books!), one soft coated wheaten terrier and a brand new Havanese puppy.  She’s a Twitter and Internet junkie and is always around to interact with her readers.  More information on Carly can be found at www.carlyphillips.com.  Around the web you can also find Carly at:

Twitter: www.twitter.com/carlyphillips

Facebook: www.facebook.com/carlyphillipsfanpage

Blog: www.plotmonkeys.com (along with Janelle Denison!)

 

Upcoming Release: SERENDIPITY 9/2010

 

Janelle Denison is a USA Today bestselling author of over fifty sensual contemporary romance novels who has written for Harlequin Blaze, Kensington Brava, Berkley and St. Martin’s Press. She is a two-time recipient of the National Reader’s Choice award, and has also been nominated for the prestigious RITA award.

Originally a California native, she now calls Oregon home. She resides in the Portland area with her husband and daughters and can’t imagine a more beautiful place to live. When not writing, she can be found exploring the great Northwest, from the gorgeous beaches to the amazing waterfalls and lush mountains.

To learn more about Janelle and her upcoming releases, you can visit her at janelledenison.com, friend her at Facebook at facebook.com/janelledenisonfanpage, or chat with her at her blog at plotmonkeys.com.

 

RECENT AND UPCOMING RELEASES:

INTO THE NIGHT (Book 1 of The Reliance Group Series)
April 2011

NIGHT AFTER NIGHT (Book 2 of The Reliance Group Series)
October 2011

 

RomCon Tuesday – Ashley March and Jenn LeBlanc

For this week’s RomCon Tuesday Post we asked RomCon Newbies Jenn LeBlanc and Ashley March to tell us why they are coming to RomCon and what they are looking forward to most. Both Jenn and Ashley write historical romances and Jenn’s include pictures.

Why are you coming to RomCon 2011 and what are you looking forward to most?

 

Ashley March:

Besides the fact that I live near Denver and the location of RomCon makes it very convenient for me to attend, I’m going to RomCon 2011 because I want to meet readers. The national RWA conference also provides opportunities to meet and interact with readers through signings, and it’s true that most of the writers who attend RWA also read romance, but the focus of RomCon is on the romance reader. This interests me because my goal at RomCon is to help the readers to have fun and to make them feel like stars, not the other way around. And although I’ve only been published for less than a year at this point, the one thing I quickly learned as a published author is that there is no community more kind, supportive, or generous than the romance reading community. At the RomCon conference, I’m specifically looking forward to the Victorian fashion show. I think it’ll be so much fun to see some of my favorite historical authors dressed up! If you see me there, please don’t be shy–come and say hi. I look forward to meeting you!

 

Jenn LeBlanc

The easy answer to why I’m going to RomCon this year is to promote my illustrated romance The Rake and the Recluse. Boring answer right? Yes, now that the professional answer is out of the way here is why I’m really going to RomCon. Mancandy and romance. I’ve heard tales galore of the hijinks at RomCon last year, and I want to be part of it. I want the inside jokes. You know the ones, where I’ll wink at Ashley March and say “Remember when Kati and Jamie…” and she will giggle and say, “oh my, yes! And when Rita…” and then we’ll laugh like school girls. Here’s what I’m looking forward to: Meeting all the wonderfully crazy people I know from twitter. I’m flying Derek out to participate in all the RomCon fun and we are doing a highlander photo shoot with the winner of the Operation Auction cover shoot. I’m also set up to shoot some cover models (fingers crossed), I’m co-hosting the Historical Tea and of course there’s the meet n’ greet with myself, Ashley March and the Pervy Trinity for the winner of the #RomCon11 ticket contest. Let’s not even get started with the Chocolate Mangasm and Melissa Schroeder’s luau, because there are no words. I also hear that the Book Reading Gals have some tricks up their proverbial sleeves. Why do I want to go to RomCon? It is going to be EPIC. EPIC like 80s music is epic. I mean, man candy and romance, what could be better? I hope I get to meet you there as well, Jenn

 

 

After spending countless hours memorizing both traditional and simplified Chinese characters, perfecting her tones, and practicing her speaking with any Chinese native she could find, Ashley successfully graduated with a degree in Mandarin Chinese. She was determined to be the next best Chinese translator in the world… Then she discovered writing historical romances was as much fun as reading them, and her Chinese capabilities have never been the same. When she isn’t writing sexy, emotional historical romances set in the Victorian Era, Ashley stays busy trying to entertain her two young daughters, attempting to do housework, and hiking in the beautiful foothills of Colorado.

You can find Ashley on her site www.ashleymarch.com

 

 

 

I have several constants in life that define me:

Colorado, Canon, CJ, kids and curls.

Born and raised in a household of other people’s children in this beautiful state —very nearly with a camera in hand— I never left. I started my own family, got used to the curls, went to college, built a CJ, and started a business, all with a camera in hand.

I always had another passion; storytelling born from daydreams and nightmares. My fingers were never as quick as my mind, and no amount of practice got them there, so it was difficult and frustrating to have this inside me. When my second daughter was born her inherent traits kept me pinned— my only escape the keyboard. Spending my days in parenting chat rooms I got highly adept with one-handed typing and I can still type just about as fast with one hand as I can with two. It’s a great talent to have when engrossed in a scene and in need of a hit of caffeine. I recently finished my first novel but I quickly realized: I was born a photographer.

From the realization that someone ELSE would be shooting the cover of MY book my control-freak took over. What started as an easy cover shoot ballooned into this completely new kind of media, designed specifically for digital book readers.

I live and thrive off chaos and the constant flow of the creative process. I wear shorts and flip-flops year-round —much to the chagrin of my friends and family— and I am currently working on the illustrations for my second novel.

You can find Jenn on her site The Illustrated Romance

RomCon Tuesday – Cindy Gerard & Tara Janzen

If you went to RomCon last year you know that 2 of the funnest people there was Tara Janzen and Cindy Gerard. We actually got to spend  a lot of time with them and I had some serious fan girl moments with both of them as I have been a HUGE fan of theirs for years. They even gave Mel and I a nickname The Vegas Book Ends.

Both of them have great series that I love and have read every book in. If you like very ALPHA males and strong heroines that don’t let the men dictate everything then you NEED to read these books.

These are two of my favorite books of theirs

WHEN EVERY FRIENDLY FACE COULD MASK A KILLER…

“Sweet Baby Jane” Perkins has carved out a mega-selling reputation as rock’s favorite bad girl. But her hard-living, tough-talking image can’t prevent the sharp dose of reality that hit home when her estranged mother is killed in a car accident. As bizarre coincidences escalate in her own life, Janey grows certain that someone is watching her every move, and it’s not one of her adoring fans…

THE ONLY PERSON SHE CAN TRUST…

Since leaving the Army Rangers six months ago, Jason Wilson has been adrift, a warrior without a war. Now he’s taken his first civilian assignment for his army buddy’s security firm: protecting a rock diva on her sold-out tour. Far from being a spoiled star, Janey is a revelation—sweet, modest, and incredibly sexy. Their friendship is turning to mutual, heated desire, but it’s a distraction that could cost them more than their hearts…

MAY BE A PERFECT STRANGER.

Drawn into the depths of a deadly secret, they’ll face off against a killer growing more ruthless every day, and Jase will discover just how far he’ll go to protect an explosive passion he never expected…

 

SOLDIER. HERO. LOVER. HE’S SO DANGEROUS, HE’S OFF THE RADAR.

Professional soldier Kid Chronopolous moves in stealth and shadow to take out the world’s deadliest threats. Now, after barely surviving a hair-raising mission in South America , the Special Defense Forces agent comes home to some sorely needed R & R…and finds a bikini bottom that can belong to only one woman.

Nikki McKinney has never forgiven Kid for vanishing from her life after the mind-blowing passion they shared. Now he’s suddenly back on the planet, where she’s rising to the top of the local art scene. But her safe, sheltered world is about to be rocked to its core. Because there’s a bounty on Kid’s head—and his enemies don’t care if they take him dead or alive. With dangerous people gunning for him, Kid’s got Nikki running for cover…and right into his arms. Keeping her safe is his latest mission. Keeping their hands off each other is out of the question…