Monday, May 21, 2018

A little time at the beach...

With: Kat Martin

Congratulations to "JOYCE M.", the winner in Kat's giveaway. Please contact JRS to claim your prize. Thank you to all who participated!

Everyone loves the beach.  Though I live in Montana, I’m fortune to spend my winters at the beach in sunny California.  My writing space looks out on a boat channel that leads to the harbor so I watch the tide go up and down several times a day.

A bicycle-ride away, a sandy beach slopes down to the water where a frothy tide rolls in and out, the perfect place to talk a stroll at the end of a long day or just dig your toes into the warm gritty sand.

For me, there is no better way to spend an afternoon than lying in the sun on a bright-colored beach towel, straw hat shading your face while you read a delicious, page-turning novel.  The rhythmic curl and tug of the waves is the perfect backdrop, lulling me into the story, shutting out the day-to-day troubles of the world, if only for a little while.

As a writer, lying half-asleep in the sun, listening to the soft rush of the wind and the cry of seagulls, is a great way to get story ideas. 

Too often I get stuck when writing a novel (I refuse to call it writer’s block, which is way too scary).  The beach, I’ve discovered, is a great antidote.

 While I was writing the third book in my Texas Trilogy, BEYOND CONTROL, Josh Cain and Victoria Bradford’s story, I found myself unable to figure out how the heroine was going to escape the perilous situation I had put her in.  After several sleepless nights, I took a drive along the beach just a few blocks from my house. 

As I looked at the clear blue ocean stretching endlessly in front of me, my whole body relaxed--a little slice of heaven.  An hour away from the computer, watching the waves crash up on the shore, my creative juices started flowing.  Ideas flashed in my head, some good, some not-so-good, as the next part of Josh and Tory’s story opened up in my mind. 

Hurrying home, I madly began pounding on the keyboard, desperate to get my thoughts down on the page.  The story started moving forward again, and I was even able to get a good night’s sleep! 

So the next time you’re feeling jammed up about something, whether you’re a writer or not, whether you live at the beach or in the desert, the mountains or the city, find a place that lets you breathe, refreshes you and lets you face the world again. 
Have a great summer and happy reading.  Till next time, Kat


BEYOND CONTROL


Present Danger
 
When Victoria Bradford got engaged, she told herself to give love a chance. Six months later, she's on the run from her angry, abusive ex-fiancé with her four-year-old daughter and nowhere to go.
 
Seventy miles north of Dallas, the Iron River Ranch is pretty much nowhere. That’s what its new owner, Josh Cain, wanted when he came back from Afghanistan. Big skies, quiet nights, no trouble.
 
One look tells Josh the pretty redhead with the adorable little girl will give him trouble of the most personal kind. But he’s seen trouble before, and he doesn't scare easy. Not when “accidents” start happening around the ranch. Not when Tory’s best friend back in Phoenix is abducted and brutalized. Not even when it looks like their current problems are only the tip of the iceberg.
 
But if he gets too close to fierce, determined Tory, Josh knows his nights are going to be anything but quiet. And that’s one possibility no amount of training can prepare him for . . .

iTUNES

Excerpt:
Iron River Ranch
Iron Springs, Texas

Victoria Bradford drove the old blue Chevy Malibu along the two lane road.  Up ahead, a sign hung above a narrow dirt track running off to the west, IRON RIVER RANCH.

“Are we there yet, Mama?”  Ivy, her four year old daughter, had asked at a dozen times since they’d left the Walmart parking lot in Iron Springs.  The ten mile drive didn’t take long, but to a four year old who’d been in the car for days, they couldn’t reach their destination soon enough. 

“We’re very close, sweetheart.  This is the turn, right here.”  Tory checked the gas gauge as the wheels left the pavement and started rumbling over the bumpy dirt road.  Less than an eighth of a tank.  She hoped the ranch wasn’t much farther.

More than that, she prayed the job hadn’t already been filled. 

She sighed as the aging Malibu rolled along.  She was basically in bumfrick Egypt, ten miles north of Nowhere Springs, almost out of gas, with twenty three dollars and thirty three cents in her wallet. 

Last night, without enough money for a motel room and afraid to use her credit cards for fear Damon would somehow track her, they’d slept in the car in the Walmart parking lot.  As soon as the McDonald’s opened, she had pulled into the drive-thru and bought Sausage McMuffins, then driven out to the ranch to somehow convince the owner to hire a woman with a daughter and no actual ranching experience.

She thought of the ad in the paper she had spotted last night on the counter in the Iron Springs CafĂ©.  If she somehow managed to get the job, it would be perfect.  Besides a steady paycheck and the ranch being way off the grid, the position included the use of a double-wide trailer. 

After being on the road for the past three weeks, living out of motel rooms and suitcases, the trailer sounded like a palace.

“Look, Mama, there it is!”  Ivy pointed toward the cluster of buildings up ahead, a couple of barns, several fenced training arenas, and a two-story home with dormer windows and a covered porch running the length out in front.  A double-wide sat fifty yards away.

Vast stretches of open green pastureland surrounded the complex where horses and cattle grazed, and there were ponds and woodlands in the distance, and dense copses of trees.
The Chevy bumped over the last patch of road, pulled up in front of the house, and Tory quickly turned off the engine.  No use wasting what little gas she had left. 

“Mama, there’s a man over there by the barn.”

Her gaze swung in that direction.  There was, indeed, a man.  The noisy buzz of a saw covered the sound of their arrival, giving her time to assess him. 

Shirtless, he was working with his back to them, broad, tanned, and muscled above a narrow waist that disappeared into a pair of faded jeans.  The jeans hugged a round behind and long, powerful legs. 

  He was tall, she saw when he straightened away from his work and walked into the barn, with medium brown hair cut short.  She got her first look at his face when he walked back out, handsome, with a solid jaw and masculine features, at least three days’ growth of whiskers. 

The front of him was just as impressive as the back, a broad chest with solid pecs, muscular biceps, and six pack abs.

Unease filtered through her.  This was a strong, powerful male.  She knew first hand what a man like that could do to a woman. 

Tory forced down the notion.  Not all men were like Damon.  Before she’d met him, she had been married to a good and decent man, the father of her child.  Jamie Bradford, her high school sweetheart, was one of the gentlest people she’d ever known.  Her father was a good man, before he’d fallen in love with his secretary and divorced her mother, leaving the two of them alone.

Tory took a courage-building breath.  “Stay here, sweetheart.”  Cracking open the car door, she slid out from behind the wheel.  “Don’t worry, sweetie.  Everything’s going to be okay.”

She hoped.


Giveaway:


Kat is giving away a copy of AGAINST THE STORM to one lucky reader posting a comment or email entry. (Hardback, Kindle, or Nook-Winner's Choice US residents ONLY)

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST May 22nd. Due to GDPR regulations you no longer need to submit your email address in the comments. If you have been selected as a winner your name will be posted at the top of the post. You may then contact maureen@justromanticsuspense.com to claim your prize. Your email address will be shared with the author/publicist providing the giveaway. 

10 comments:

  1. I love all of your Romantic Suspense books and would love to win...thank you

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  2. This sounds really interesting. I love romantic suspense. Love the edge of your seat suspense that brings you to the HEA. Thanks for giving us a chance to win.

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  3. Such a big Kat Martin fan. And of this series. Would love to win this book.
    Christinebails at Yahoo dot com

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  4. Thanks for sharing... have not gotten into this series yet, but it sounds good!

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  5. Sounds like a great read.

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  6. Great advice for taking a break. When you are working hard on something, it is easy to get bogged down, even if it doesn't require creative input. Getting away from it and just doing nothing much it a great way to clear your head and help you get back to getting things done.
    Sadly abuse is a much too frequent problem in relationships. Abusive control, whether it is mental or physical is destructive and seldom solved by anything other than getting out of the relationship and away from the abuser. I have see far too many cases of it. I was shocked when we moved to where we now live. It is so ingrained in the local culture, it is expected and excused. High school girls suffer at the hands of their boyfriends, but it is "OK" because that is just the way things are. Working in the community is interesting and frustrating. You may be more than qualified and quite capable, but you are still talked down to and ignored or not taken seriously. If your husband is with you, they will deal with him and ignore you, even if he has nothing to do with what is being dealt with. Sadly, law enforcement is as guilty as everyone else. "She deserved it" is alive and well.

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  7. Love your writing and would enjoy reading this story

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