Saturday, February 6, 2016

By Break Of Day

With: M.L. Buchman

Giveaway Alert!


NAME: Kara Moretti
RANK: Captain of the Army’s stealthiest remote piloted aircraft (Don’t call it a drone)
MISSION: To be the eyes of the team

NAME: Justin “The Cowboy” Roberts
RANK: Captain of the Army’s most powerful helicopter
MISSION: To redeem the past, at any cost

They Put Life, Limb, and Heart on the Line

Two new captains join The Night Stalkers with two different strategies in life, love, and combat. When Brooklyn-raised Kara joins the crew, she knows one thing as an absolute truth: to stay safe, keep everything and everyone at a distance. Born in Texas, Justin knows only one honorable way to make up for losing his first crew to a suicide bomber: he flies with all his heart. When Kara and Justin collide on a top secret mission deep in the Israeli desert, then the battle truly begins.

M. L. Buchman has over 35 novels and an ever-expanding flock of short stories in print. His military romantic suspense books have been named Barnes & Noble and NPR “Top 5 of the year,” Booklist “Top 10 of the Year,” and RT “Top 10 Romantic Suspense of the Year.” In addition to romantic suspense, he also writes contemporaries, thrillers, and fantasy and science fiction.

In among his career as a corporate project manager he has: rebuilt and single-handed a fifty-foot sailboat, both flown and jumped out of airplanes, designed and built two houses, and bicycled solo around the world.

He is now a full-time writer, living on the Oregon Coast with his beloved wife. He is constantly amazed at what you can do with a degree in Geophysics. You may keep up with his writing at

Buy Links:

This February, M. L. Buchman raises the stakes—and the heat—in By Break of Day, the latest in his acclaimed Night Stalkers series. To celebrate Buchman joins us on the blog to share an excerpt and answer a quick Q&A!

How do you do research for your books?
I read voraciously. I read memoirs, technical manuals, blog posts, newsfeeds, especially anything that will offer me insights into how a character might feel/react/think. I interview people only rarely, but that has much more to do with my own deeply introverted nature than any lack of desire to get it right. I spend and hour of research for every 3-4 hours of writing. 

An Excerpt:
Captain Justin Roberts flies a massive Chinook twin-rotor helicopter. Captain Kara Moretti flies a drone and is trying out to be the Air Mission Commander during a training exercise.

Captain Justin Roberts gave the collective control between his knees a little nudge forward. Fifteen tons of helicopter carrying a platoon of U.S. Rangers and their gear eased forward as smooth as a baby’s behind.
Every single time he flew his big MH-47G “Golf” Chinook helicopter, it was a surprise—a surprise of how much fun it was. Like they were meant for each other since long before they met.
SOAR only flew three primary types of helos, all deeply modified to the 160th’s specification. The Little Bird, the Black Hawk, and the Chinook Golf. His girl was the monster of the outfit. Calamity Jane was definitely a Texas-sized lady: big, powerful, and dangerous.
“I feel the need for a song.”
“Oh God, spare us.” Danny Corvo spoke up from the copilot seat. From there he was Justin’s second set of eyes and the master of the helo’s general health and well-being.
Oh, give me a home,” Carmen cut in from her position at the starboard gun close behind Justin’s seat.
Carmen Parker was hot shit with an M134 minigun that could unload four thousand rounds-a-minute of hell on anyone who messed with her. She was also king, er, queen of the bird—the absolute last word on maintenance and loading.
Where the Chinook helos roam.” Talbot George was always off-key at the side gun behind Danny’s copilot position, but he sang with heart, even if with a distinctly British accent.
And the flights are at night every day,” the three of them sang together in splendidly awful harmony.
Danny groaned as if in the throes of death-by-torture agony.
As usual, Raymond Hines kept his own counsel at the rear ramp gunner’s post. The Chinook was the size of a school bus inside. Tonight, in the cargo area between the cockpit and Ray’s rear post, thirty U.S. Rangers and their three ATVs were counting on SOAR to sling them into position. The big rotors fore and aft let her lift her own weight in cargo; even in high-hot conditions the Chinook outperformed most everything around.
By the third chorus their harmonies were better, so Justin hit the transmit switch for the last of it. It got the answering transmission he was hoping for.
“Justin, honey?”
“Here for you, sweetheart.” Kara Moretti just slayed him. From the first briefing where she’d moseyed in all dark and Italian and perfect, his head had been turned hard enough that he kept checking his neck for whiplash. Then when she opened her mouth and poured out thick Brooklyn… Two months later and he still didn’t know what to do with that, not a bit of it. It was all… wrong, yet it was so right. Her voice should be some sweet bella signora, like the one he’d spent a week with while stationed at Camp Darby outside of Pisa on the Italian coast a couple years back.
Instead Kara was—
“You do that to me again and you’re gonna be singing soprano the rest of your life. We clear, Cowboy?”
—a hundred percent, New York. “Y’all wouldn’t do that to me now, would ya?” He laid it on thick.
“Castrate the bull calf? In a heartbeat. And I ain’t your sweetheart.”
“I’ll hold him down while you trim ’em,” Lola Maloney called in from the DAP Hawk.
He was about to say something about how it made the meat taste more luscious and tender—which was why they castrated most bull calves—but he couldn’t figure out how to phrase it without it sounding crude and perhaps tempting her to start looking for some neutering shears when Trisha cut in.
“Roger that! We’ll pin him, you chop and cauterize. Use a really hot iron.”
Claudia Jean Gibson at the controls of the Maven II didn’t speak much, but he could feel her out there agreeing with them.
Justin winced in imagined pain, as he was sure every man on the comm circuit did. He figured maybe it would be better if he kept his mouth shut. Once the women of the 5D got on a roll, wasn’t no man on God’s green earth who was safe.

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Friday, February 5, 2016

Everything I Know About Writing Medical Romance I Learned From Star Trek

With: Julie Rowe

The character of the doctor has always been one of the main characters in every Star Trek series made. Why?

I believe it’s because we all have the same fears and expectations of doctors no matter where we come from, and it’s those similarities we need to draw from in writing any medical scene.  Here’s a quote to illustrate my point:

McCoy to Chekov: “Now this isn’t going to hurt a bit.”
Chekov: “That’s what you said the last time.”
McCoy: “Did it hurt?”
Chekov: “Yes.”
- McCoy and Chekov, TOS/The Deadly Years.

What’s great about this bit of dialogue is that anyone reading it can identify with Chekov.

I learned to write medical details in plain English from this little conversation McCoy had with a policeman and Kirk in The Voyage Home:

McCoy to policeman: “Damnit, do you want an acute case on your hands? This woman has immediate postprandial upper abdominal distension! Out of the way…Get out of the way.”
Kirk to McCoy: “What did you say she’s got?”
McCoy: “Cramps.”

Most readers don’t understand medical speak. You have to put things in terms they DO understand.

I learned to use medical scenes to deepen the stakes for my characters from this exchange between Kirk and a police man in The Voyage Home:

Policeman to McCoy: “How’s the patient, Doctor?”
McCoy: “He’s gonna make it!”
Police man: “He?  You came in with a she?”
McCoy: “One little mistake…”

This made me laugh out loud when I heard it the first time, but for the policeman, it sure made him wary!

I learned that the best doctors are deeply empathic and need to be written that way.

Dr. Crusher to Picard: “Where are the calluses we doctors are supposed to grow over our feelings?”
Picard: “Perhaps the good ones never get them.”
- Beverly and Picard, TNG/Code of Honor.

Dr. Pulaski to Doctor: “It’s a time honoured way to practice medicine – with your head and your heart and your hands.”
- Pulaski to Doctor, TNG/Contagion.

Dr. Bashir to Garak: “I’m a doctor, you’re my patient, that’s all I need to know.”
- Bashir to Garak, DS9/Life Support.

Practicing medicine is often an emotionally draining occupation. It’s important to remember this aspect when you’re creating medical characters.

I’ve learned that readers enjoy stories with medical characters engaged in a struggle to safe a life.

Dr. Bashir to Winn: “Listen to me. I don’t care about your negotiations, and I don’t care about your treaty. All I care about is my patient, and at the moment, he needs more treatment and less politics.”
- Bashir to Winn, DS9/Life Support.

I learned that not all medical scenes need to be serious. Humor can be a powerful a tool in storytelling.

Chekov to Sulu: “’Give us some more blood, Chekov.’ ‘The needle won’t hurt, Chekov.’ ‘Breathe deeply, Chekov.’ ‘Blood sample, Chekov.’ ‘ Marrow sample, Chekov.’ ‘ Skin sample, Chekov.’  If…if I live long enough, I’m going to run out of samples.”
Sulu: “You’ll live.”
Chekov: “Oh, yes, I’ll live.  But I won’t enjoy it.”
-Chekov and Sulu, TOS/The Deadly Years.

The final lesson is to end the story with an emotional satisfying ending.

Live long and prosper.

Julie’s latest release VIRAL JUSTICE is now available!

As a general's daughter, Alicia Stone has fought twice as hard for everything she's earned in the military. A Special Forces consultant with black belts in three martial arts, she's as strong as her surname implies. No one dares call her Alicia—no one but Colonel Robert Maxmillian, head of the Biological Response Team.

With Alicia at his side, Max must lead the team into northern Iraq to investigate a virus—or is it a weapon?—killing the area's population. Charged with guarding his body, she can't help wanting his hands on her body. Max would be the perfect fling. But he demands more.

The heat builds between them, but danger quickly follows. As the two get closer to the source of the virus, they'll have to risk their future to outsmart a scientist with nothing to lose.

Book three of Biological Response Team


Julie Rowe’s first career as a medical lab technologist in Canada took her to the North West Territories and northern Alberta, where she still resides. She loves to include medical details in her romance novels, but admits she’ll never be able to write about all her medical experiences because, “Fiction has to be believable”. Julie writes contemporary and historical medical romance, fun romantic suspense and military romance. Her most recent titles are the MEN OF ACTION boxed set and VIRAL JUSTICE book #3 of the Biological Response Team series. You can find her at , on Twitter @julieroweauthor or at her Facebook page: 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016


With: Janie Crouch

Giveaway Alert!

One of the most difficult parts of writing a romantic suspense book is getting the right balance between romance and suspense. I normally like to start my concept for a book with the relationship and attraction between the two main characters clear in my mind and then see what sort of danger they can find themselves in.

But FULLY COMMITTED, book 2 in the Omega Sector: Critical Response series came a little differently.  Instead of the hero and heroine, I knew who the villain was, and knew how he was getting away with his crimes (What Romantic Times Book Reviews called a “surprising and well-played…whodunit”).

This mystery element came straight out of the time I spent at the WRITER’S POLICE ACADEMY in 2014.  That experience was absolutely fantastic. What I learned from it directly shaped FULLY COMMITTED, but also how I look at (and write about) law enforcement and criminals in general.

Here are some of the opportunities I was able to experience at the Writer’s Police Academy:

The decisions EMTs/Paramedics/firefighters have to make when faced with a multi-victim situation. We were given a demonstration (using actor victims) of what such a scene would be like. EMTs sometimes have to make life or death choices, especially in large accident scenes.

How daggone heavy a SWAT vest is. All in all, SWAT moves around with 40+ pounds of gear on them – then still have to move quickly and effortlessly. I had a great deal more respect for them after lifting the vest for myself.

I learned how loud it is, even from 30 yards away, when a door is blown off its hinges. Being inside the building would scare the pants off someone who didn’t know it was coming. I knew the blast was coming, had my ears covered, and still jumped when it happened. 

The adrenaline that comes along with doing a building search, knowing someone is inside. Seriously, I was one of the more calm people, and my heart rate was through the roof by the time the exercise was completed. It was scary. Even though I knew I was not in real danger, knowing someone was somewhere hiding in this empty apartment complex… nerve-wracking.
The pressure of giving CPR to a critical patient while  a REALLY HANDSOME young paramedic is watching in a moving ambulance. The ambulance ride-along (with EMT students, not real patients) was a huge learning experience for me. We were able to watch them work, plus ask questions.

We learned a lot more also at the Writer’s Police Academy.  Workshops on: prostitution, K9s, Special Ops, and forensic art. Not to mention all the information I gleamed from talking to law enforcement officers, firefighters, EMTs, lab technicians and TSA agents. Just getting inside their minds, listening to their language was fascinating and useful.

By the time I left I had a notebook full of scenarios, stories and specifics you can plan to see in my books for years to come. FULLY COMMITTED is just one of those great influences. 


The Texas heat did nothing to stop an elusive criminal 

Omega Sector: Critical Response agent Jon Hatton is running out of options. If he doesn't get a decent lead soon, a serial rapist will strike again. His best chances lie with the intuitive skills of forensic artist Sherry Mitchell, a beautiful woman struggling with PTSD. 

In exchange for her help, Jon teaches Sherry to manage her symptoms, and soon they are unable to resist their Texas-hot attraction. With Jon as her lifeline, Sherry uncovers clues that prompt a frightening message from the attacker. Jon knows Sherry's determined to help catch this criminal, but keeping her safe is his top priority. Followed by making her his bride.

Info & Excerpt HERE
Buy at Amazon
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Win a Character Named After Your Loved One VALENTINE CONTEST! on Janie’s website:   Responding to this JRS post gets you extra entries!

and answer the following question for extra chances to win: list anything about the hero or heroine that you like (or don’t like!) so far in the novella.

JANIE CROUCH’s books have been nominated for both the 2014 and 2015  Romantic Times (RT) Reviewer’s Choice Award and various other awards.  She currently lives on an American military base in Stuttgart, Germany with her hubby and four kids. Unfortunately,  ihr Deutsch ist nicht sehr gut zur Zeit. She loves travelling, adventure racing, and movies of all kinds.
Connect with Janie:
Twitter  •  Giveaways  •  Amazon  •  Goodreads  

Monday, February 1, 2016

Just suspense Author Takeover: Emily Bowie

Congratulations to "Mary P.", the winner in Emily's giveaway. Thank you to all who participated!

I am Emily Bowie, a debut romantic suspense author. Please check out and like my Facebook page! 

I love being physically active (hiking, walking, being outdoors in general). But I HATE the cold! I live in Canada and close to half of the year I stay hibernating indoors. I am forced to find indoor places to stay active.  The only thing that will get me out side when it is really cold is the pleading eyes of my children. 

I also love wine, and belong to a wine club.

I have written two books thus far. Allure of the O’Neal Sisters and Behind the Closed Door (just released!) I am currently working on my third book, and I am hoping to have it released late summer 2016!

I find inspiration with in the world around me. I am influenced by suggestions from friends, family and fans. I only plan my books a few chapters ahead because I do not know where it will end up taking me! (In saying this I do have an ending in mind at the start, but it normally changes by the time I get there!)


Three very different couples, one hot affair, one crazy wife, a business deal double-crossing. What once stayed behind closed doors becomes open for all to see. 

Summer Hart, a sexy, redheaded cougar, finds herself in the middle of everyone’s lives. On the outside it appears that she has the perfect life inside of her large, picturesque home. She had always thought that, together with her husband, they were the ultimate power couple, her being a lawyer and him being a doctor. Their honor roll daughter topped the picture-perfect image they created.

Her life is perfect, until she meets Cole Walker that is. 

Cole Walker is a sexy, tough-looking, tattooed businessman. He used to think one woman was the way it should be, but after being married for some time he realized he needed more. All that changed when he saw Summer. The way in which he played his life was shattered.

Legal boundaries will be crossed and ultimate sacrifices made as the lives of these three power couples intertwine. Power, love, desire, sex, and ultimate betrayal encircle them all, unraveling a web of deception that may have best been left untouched.


To thank you for stopping by I'm giving away a e-copy of Behind the Closed Door!  If you'd like a chance to win, please leave a comment! 

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST Feb. 2nd. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Claimed by the Marquis

With: Carole Mortimer

Hi, and a Happy New Year to Everyone!

I have a couple of exciting things happening this month. The release of Claimed by the Marquis, 2nd book in my bestselling romantic suspense Regency Unlaced Series, on January 29th. Plus the pre-order of Taken by the Earl, the 3rd book in the Regency Unlaced Series, is also now available, with a publishing date of April 2nd.

I am so enjoying writing both my Regency Unlaced Series, and contemporary Alpha Series. Both series have strong Romantic Suspense in their storylines. Writing for both genres means that each book is totally fresh and new, and it’s a joy to get up every morning and start writing!

Claimed by the Marquis

Author’s Note: The stories in the Regency Unlaced series are steaming hot and the language sometimes explicit.

Lady Sally Derwent is an unusual Regency Miss, in that at the age of five and twenty, she is still unwed and determined to remain so. She has no desire to relinquish her freedom in order to become the property of some unworthy gentleman. Nor is she willing to part with the independence she acquired at the age of one and twenty, when she came into the fortune bequeathed to her by her paternal grandmother.

There is also the matter of the other part of the inheritance her grandmother left to her.

A scandalous collection of erotica. Books, paintings, statues, sketches, most of which make Sally blush to look at, but which fascinate her nonetheless.

Attending the wedding of a close friend, Sally takes one look at Nicholas Sefton, Marquis of Oxbridge, with his unfashionably long dark hair, piercing green eyes, and magnificently muscular body, and knows he is the missing piece from her vast collection of erotica. Not the man himself but the sketches she wishes to make of him. Nude.

Nicholas Sefton has long been bored with both the restrictions of society and the people in it. The war with Napoleon is over, and although he is the owner of several large estates, they are all being run very capably without his assistance. Likewise his townhouse in London. He is currently in need of a diversion in his life, something, or someone, to occupy or entertain him.

Lady Sally Derwent’s outrageous request, to sketch him naked, is beyond any amusement Nicholas might have imagined for his immediate future.

The lady herself is beautiful, the attraction between the two of them mutual, but she nevertheless declares herself unavailable. A situation Nicholas intends to change at the earliest opportunity.

Unrealized by either of them, someone close to them wishes Lady Sally Derwent dead. Sooner rather than later.

Will the Marquis and Sally become so caught up in their heated attraction to one another they remain unaware of the danger until it is too late?

I will be publishing a book almost every month throughout the year, so 2016 looks like being even more exciting than 2015!

What can I say, I simply love writing romances with the added danger of suspense!

Have a great January,

This book is also available on Kobo, ibooks, and Smashwords.

About Carole:
Carole Mortimer has written over 200 books in the contemporary and Regency genres, most recently the bestselling contemporary Alpha, and Regency Unlaced series.
Carole is Recipient of the 2015 Romance Writers of America Lifetime Achievement Award, a USA Today Bestselling Author, Entertainment Weekly Top 10 Romance Author, 2014 Romantic Times Pioneer or Romance, and in 2012 was recognized by Queen Elizabeth II for her ‘outstanding service to literature’.
She is very happily married to Peter, they have 6 sons, and live on the beautiful Isle of Man.

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