Saturday, August 18, 2018

National Bad Poetry Day!


In honor of National Bad Poetry Day, I’m going to share some poems I dug up on the internet. Are they bad? Some will make you groan. Some will make you roll your eyes. But are they truly bad? That’s in the eye of the beholder, isn’t it? Let’s start with something short and sweet, shall we?

There once was a fellow McSweeny
Who spilled some gin on his weenie
Just to be couth
He added vermouth
Then slipped his girl a martini
--Author Unknown


I’ve been on every diet known to man
Atkins, Lemonade, Cabbage, and f-plan
And I’ve never lost a thing worthy of mention
But I try every new one, full of good intention
Now I’m on the Whisky diet, which I’m taking steady
And do you know I’ve lost three days already?
--Paul Curtis

Like an orchid, she holds a sweet scent
and speaks to my heart, in a sexy accent.
A tigress in my defense, she gives me a hundred percent,
A guardian angel, she was heaven sent.
--Emile Pinet


“She Dwelt Among the Untrodden Ways” by William Wordsworth






Isn’t the imagery beautiful? Wouldn't it be lovely to matter that much? I challenge all of you to find a silly poem and share it with your friends today. Raise of toast to someone you've lost or simply to celebrate a wonderful friendship. 

Laurie Olerich writes taut, action-packed, and wickedly sexy urban fantasy and paranormal romance. Creating a world filled with immortal soldiers, micromanaging archangels, and unforgettable demons is her one true passion. Her stories will linger in your heart long after you’ve closed the book.



Wednesday, August 15, 2018

FOOD AND ROMANCE COMBINED


I love food and I love a good foodie romance, especially when it's light and funny. I'm Italian, so I knew at some point in my writing career I'd have to pen a romance with an Italian heroine that involved mouth-watering Italian food in some way.

My romantic comedy, The Meatball Mistress takes place in an Italian restaurant back east with a hero and heroine who are both trying to heal from betrayal. A tough road for sure...but worth it in the end.

Here's an excerpt:

Ryan headed home after Bella closed so he wouldn’t be tempted to drink as much. He needed to keep a clear head in deciding what his next step would be regarding the restaurant. He was about to pull into his driveway when he realized he had forgotten the reports he had printed out. They were on the desk in his office. Damn. He turned the car around and made the quick drive back. Run in, run out. That was the plan.
            He wasn’t expecting to see Cara on the floor of his kitchen, sobbing.
            “Jesus, Cara! What’s wrong? Are you okay?” He crouched down and grabbed her by both shoulders. Horrible thoughts went through his mind all at once. Had she fallen and broken her ankle? Had somebody followed her home and attacked her—or worse? “Do you need me to call an ambulance?”
            She shook her head no. “I’m fine,” she managed.
            “You’re not fine.” He searched her body and face for signs of cuts or bruises. “Tell me what happened. It’s okay. You’re safe now.”
            Her sobs began to subside. She leaned back against the leg of the counter, wiping at her eyes.
“Did someone hurt you?” He was already reaching for his cell to call 911.
            “Yes. No. Yes, but not in the way that you think.”
            Ryan waited for her to explain. “Cara?” he prodded, staring into her bloodshot eyes.
            She bowed her head, sheepishly. “I’m not hurt. I’m…hungry.” She started to laugh.
            “Are you drunk?”
            “Yes, extremely,” she said with a hiccup.
            That explained some of her erratic behavior, but not all of it. He felt his heart-rate slow down to where it had been before discovering Cara on the floor. Ryan’s knees cracked as he slowly stood.
            “That doesn’t sound good,” Cara said. “How old did you say you were?”
            “Pushing thirty, but in knee years that’s about sixty, thanks to sports.” He held out his hand to help her up.
            She squinted up at him. “You played football?”
            “I was too small for football. Baseball was my game. I was a pitcher.”
            Cara took his hand and he pulled her up. “My brother played shortstop. For three years, I went to all his games.”
            “So you’re a baseball fan?”
            “After being forced to attend all my brother’s games I grew to despise the sport. Although I have to admit I think baseball players are sexy.” She smiled, leaning into him. “I’d bet you looked really hot in your uniform.”
            “I did. Until I blew my shoulder out and couldn’t play anymore.” He led her over to the center island. “My dream of playing major league ball was shot.”
            “That sucks.”
            “And so began the series of disappointments I now call my life.” He grabbed Cara by the waist and lifted her onto the island. “Do you think you can sit there without falling off?”
            She snorted. “Of course I can.” Cara leaned back, supporting herself with her hands and stared at the ceiling.
            He admired her long, slender neck and collarbone. Her skin was lightly bronzed from the sun, making her rich olive tone more pronounced. He could see a lot of skin in the sundress she was wearing. It was short and skimpy, and had tiny buttons running down the center.
            She waved her hands in front of his face. “Hello? I asked if I could have some water. Ryan?”
            He blinked twice. “Sure.”
            He went to the fridge and grabbed a large bottle of mineral water, as well as a slew of other things to tempt her. When he handed her the water she drank straight from the bottle. Her nails looked very red against the green of the glass. And her lashes seemed absurdly thick and long.
You can take the girl out of Brooklyn…
            Ryan busied himself with unwrapping wax paper and cellophane, twisting off jar lids, and choosing a very sharp knife. Why did he feel nervous all of a sudden, like he was trying to impress a date?
            “Simplicity of flavors—that’s what authentic Italian cuisine is all about,” he said, slicing open a honeydew melon at its peak of ripeness.
            “Humph! Tell that to your psycho, stubborn chef.”
            “Brady is a master in the kitchen.”
            Cara rolled her eyes. “He’s a master of complication.”
            Ryan dangled a slice of prosciutto over Cara. She reached up and grabbed it with her mouth. “Mmm,” she moaned, tasting it. “Pure heaven.”
            He popped a chunk of sweet, juicy melon in her mouth to counterbalance the meat’s saltiness. Her eyes lit up, no longer dulled by alcohol and tears. That she was able to be pleased by the simple flavors of food delighted him. Maybe she wasn’t so high-maintenance after all.
            “More,” she whispered to him with her eyes closed and her mouth semi-parted, waiting for him to surprise her with a taste of something else. In went a silky morsel of buffalo mozzarella. “So creamy.”
            Ryan mopped his forehead with his sleeve to remove the sweat he imagined had to be all over it. He sliced into a beefsteak tomato, its lush contents spilling out all over the cutting board. His hand shook as he neared Cara.
            She opened her eyes and led his hand toward her mouth. Some of the tomato dripped down her lip when she took a bite and Ryan wanted desperately to lick it off. He settled for wiping it gently with his finger.
            She was smiling up at him, her dark eyes shining. “There is nothing like a ripe Jersey tomato.”
            Ryan took a bite of the velvety mozzarella, savoring its milky taste. “Sometimes the simplest things can give you a sense of home or in my case, a sense of peace.” He was thoughtful for a moment as he ripped off an end of a loaf of crusty bread. He handed it to Cara. “Wait,” he told her, fishing out a green olive and slipping it into her mouth.
            “Why do you think I always want to make meatballs? It gives me that sense of home I no longer have.” She spied the piece of salami Ryan was cutting for her. “You’re going to make me delirious on food.”
            “I can think of worse things,” he said, placing the salami gently on her tongue. “Let’s see how good an Italian you are. Tell me what kind of salami this is.”
            She answered right away. “Genoa.”
            He was impressed. “Wow, you’re good.”
            “You don’t know the half of it,” she said, smiling devilishly.
            Their eyes held for a beat. Was he supposed to take that as an invitation to find out?
            “So, when were you in Italy?”
            Ryan had to think back. He shaved off a sliver of salty Pecorino Romano cheese and fed it to Cara. “Almost three years ago. I travelled all over Europe, but once I arrived in Italy…she seduced me and I stayed put for awhile.”
            “You fell in love there.”
            Ryan’s jaw tightened. “I fell in love with the customs, the people, and the food.”
            “And not with an Italian woman?” she said teasingly.
            “No,” he said in a clipped tone.
            Cara took another sip of water, waiting for him to say more. He sighed. “The reason I left the States in the first place was to get over a woman. My wife.”
            “Did she break your heart?”
            Ryan nodded.
            “I think the people with the hardest hearts are the ones who’ve been hurt the most.” She spoke so softly he almost missed what she had said. “Today was supposed to be my wedding day.” Her eyes filled with tears.
“Cara, listen to me.” Ryan came up to the edge of the counter and wedged himself between her legs. He looked her straight in the eye. “He’s not worth it. You’re too good for him.”
            “I know,” she said without conviction. “‘It’s him, not me,’ and all the other things people say to make a person who’s been cheated on feel better.”
            “You’re beautiful, and smart, and sexy. You’ll get over this.”
            “How can you possibly know I’ll get over this? Maybe I’ll take it to the grave.”
            He despised her bastard of a fiancĂ© for putting her through this pain and self-doubt when she didn’t deserve it. “Because I’ve been where you are, Cara.”
            “Obviously as the cheater,” she said bitterly.
“No, as the poor sap being cheated on. I caught my wife in bed with another man.”
            Cara cupped a hand over her mouth. “Oh no, Ryan.”
            “It’s fine. I’m over it.”
            She let out a strangled laugh. “No, you’re not.”
            “Of course I am,” he said quickly.
            “Okay, you are.” She wiped under each eye with a red-tipped finger. Her eye makeup was smudged beyond belief and one of her lashes was crooked.
            “Why do you wear those things?” he said, pointing to her fake eyelashes. “They’re hideous.” He pulled one off and it stuck to his finger.
She peeled the other one off and placed it in his outstretched palm. “Happy now?” Ryan was careful not to let them fall on the ground. He didn’t need Brady thinking there were spiders crawling around the kitchen.
            She wrapped her legs tightly around his waist and stared up at him. Something had shifted in her eyes, her body language, and that something was giving him permission to kiss her.
“Tell me again how beautiful I am. And smart, and sexy.”
            “You’re beautiful, Cara.”
            She started to unbutton his shirt from the bottom. “And?”
            “And smart.” Ryan closed his eyes as he felt her cool hands on his warm bare stomach.
            “And?”
            She unbuttoned the last remaining button and trailed her fingers through the hair on his chest. His eyes opened when he felt her warm breath an inch from his mouth.
            “And?” she prompted, pressing against him. He became so hard, so fast. He tried to remember whether he had a condom stashed anywhere in his office.
            “Sexy.” He wondered if it’d be tacky if he took her right there on the stainless steel.
            Cara kissed him lightly on one cheek, then the other. She moved to his mouth, brushing her lips against his in a feathery motion. Her tongue flicked his bottom lip. Ryan had his fingers twisted in her hair before he even knew what hit him. He pulled her toward him, kissing her with raw hunger that had been building for a while.
            His tongue demanded he taste every inch of her body. Ryan needed to suck, bite, lick her, fill her. She urged him on with her moans, reaching for his belt. The anticipation of being inside her made him ache. He hadn’t wanted a woman this much since—
His wife. He pulled away suddenly.
“What is it?” Cara whispered. “Do you want to go upstairs where it’s more comfortable?”
Don’t screw with this one, warned a small voice inside him.
“No, I—” Ryan stopped himself. He stared at Cara—beautiful, smart, sexy Cara. He had to be out of his mind to say no to her. Couldn’t he just—?
No, the voice said.
He let out a long exhale. “I have an early meeting tomorrow with a fish vendor.”
She gaped at him, mouth open.
“I have to go.”
Cara let her legs fall from his waist. She pushed him away with her foot.
“I completely forgot about it.”
She slid off the counter and grabbed her purse. “Where are my stupid sandals?”
Ryan found them and handed them to her. She snatched them out of his hands. “Good night, Ryan,” she said, her eyes avoiding his.
“Cara, wait…”
She looked up at him, her large brown eyes filled with hurt and disappointment.
Let her go, Ryan.
“Good night,” he said.


If you liked what you read, you can purchase
 The Meatball Mistress on Amazon.


Tiffany N. York lives in SoCal with her teenage son who is getting more and more picky about food. She can cook good food when she wants, but would much prefer her own personal chef. You can visit her website at tiffanynyorkauthor.com 

Monday, August 13, 2018

Diagnoses a la Jennifer Kacey




Decadently Yours,
Jennifer Kacey


http://www.jenniferkacey.com/books.html


Jennifer Kacey is a writer, mother, and business owner living with her miniman in Texas and New York. She sings in the shower, plays piano in her dreams, and has to have a different color of nail polish every week. The best advice she’s ever been given? Find the real you and never settle for anything less.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Count with the Count...By Ripley Proserpina



On Wednesday, August 1st, I will published the final book in my vampire series, Midnight's Crown.

Finishing a series is bitter sweet, but it's mostly nerve-wracking as I hope (fingers crossed, toes crossed, hair braided) that people are happy with the conclusion. Endings are tough, man, and I'm suddenly feeling guilty for all the complaining I've done about other endings (though, I still feel like Jo March and Laurie should have ended up together in Little Women. I won't apologize for that).

Anyhoo.... here is the blurb and a little tidbit bit for you!



Slowly, Briar climbed the stairs toward the door. She wanted to fly up them, rip the door off the hinges and bury her face in the source of the scent, but she was afraid. 

At the top step, her energy drained away and she fell to her knees. Hollowed out, she couldn’t knock, couldn’t call out. Her body was a desiccated shell. 

Help. She couldn’t push the words past her swollen throat. Exhausted, Briar let her head fall to her knees. Marcus. Valen. Sylvain. Hudson. Find me. 

As if they’d heard her, the door opened. Warm light and the scent of them filled the night. It took every bit of energy she had, but she tipped her head back until she could meet their beautiful eyes. 

She almost didn’t recognize them. Their faces were bleak, devoid of expression with eyes as empty as she felt inside, but when they saw her, they changed. 

Disbelief. 

Confusion. 

Hope. 

Briar wanted to wrap them in her arms, but she couldn’t move. She was weighed down with something that made movement impossible. If she didn’t fill up and slake this thirst, she’d die. 

Again. 

She swallowed hard. With the last bit of energy she had, she whispered, “Marcus. I’m thirsty.” 

Marcus moved fast. She remembered a time when she wouldn’t have been able to track his movement, but now she could. He reached over Sylvain, sweeping her into his arms. He buried his face in her neck and breathed her in. “Briar. Briar. Oh, God.” 

They rushed into the living room, but he didn’t let her go. The others crowded around her. Hudson knelt by her, pushed back her hair, and studied her face. “You’re alive.” His voice broke, and his icy-blue eyes filled with pain. “How are you alive?” 

She’d lost her voice, used up the last of it speaking to Marcus, so she shook her head. She kept her hand wrapped around her throat as if it would ease the ache, and Hudson’s eyes widened. 

“Marcus. Blood,” he whispered.