Saturday, April 29, 2006

Excerpt Friday (On Saturday)

Flight of the Valkyrie has finally released! Here’s a short excerpt from Chapter One.


Arrested for the murder of thirty members of the High Council of the planet Carnelia, Sienna McCade could face a hundred years in cryogenic suspension, the maximum punishment allowable by Galactic law. Jordan Dane is the Courier assigned to transport Sienna's cryo-stasis tube to a prison ship, where she will remain until her trial.

When his ship crashes and Jordan is injured, he finds himself at the mercy of the beautiful assassin who has managed to escape from the broken stasis tube. He knows he owes her a debt of gratitude for saving his life, but he can't ignore his mission. Should he deny his growing feelings for her and turn her over to the authorities, or risk everything to help her prove her innocence and spare her a hundred years in cryo sleep?


Pain lanced through Sienna McCade's body, white hot and relentless.

Starting at the base of her spine, it crept upward to the back of her neck, moving like hot lead in her veins. When it reached the base of her skull she clamped her eyes shut and tried not to scream. She'd promised herself when they captured her that she wouldn't show any fear. Had she known then what it would feel like, she would never have made herself that promise.

In her mind, she cursed and fought the dozen hands that held her down while the paralyzing drug worked its way through her nervous system. Had her efforts been any more than an illusion, she might have broken free, but the drug worked too quickly, rendering her inert and silent only seconds after the first injection plunged into her veins. All she could do now was force herself not to panic until the darkness overtook her.

Sienna had never been afraid of anything until she tasted the faint sweetness of the cryogen gases as one shallow breath pulled them to the back of her throat. The flavor of it flooded her senses and made the nightmare all too real. This was actually happening. She was being put into cryogen sleep where she would remain until it was time for her to stand trial for her crimes.

Her heartbeat slowed, beat by beat, and her blood felt like a thick snake, slithering through every dark, arterial passage in her body. It chilled her to near freezing.

I'm dead, she thought. The idea itself didn't frighten her. Her people believed that death was only the beginning of something new and wonderful. They believed the world beyond this life was a comforting place and she believed it, too. She sensed it on a primal level and thus she knew also that this could not be death. This was only a suspension of life, a terrible sleep.

She held her breath and waited for the next exhalation, but it never came. Her lungs filled with thick liquid that hardened like ice, and she cursed her captors with her last coherent thought.

Finally, she descended into blackness.

* * *

To find out more about Ravenstar’s Bride visit:

Where you will find a longer excerpt from Chapter One!

Friday, April 28, 2006

True to my Muse

[I forgot today was Friday! Sorry. Excerpt Friday will be held on Saturday this week!]

A few days ago, fellow NCP author Laine Morgan wrote in her blog about a crisis of faith.

While Laine’s crisis was truly more spiritual in nature, I can identify with her feelings in regards what I’ve been going through this week. I decided to take a week off from working on an anthology story that’s giving me trouble, and I’ve been floundering around wondering what I should be putting my energies into.

Much like Laine, I’m trying to build a career while at the same time trying to remain true to myself and my interests and not start churning out just the stuff I know will sell. It occurred to me today, after finally hitting on an interesting new science fiction plot, that I’ve been somewhat led astray also.

I’ve been trying to do everything: paranormal, erotica, contemporary, [or all three at once, which seems to be what the market is screaming for right now,] and I’m not enjoying it that much. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE vampires, werewolves and steamy, sexy stories and I’m not going to stop writing them, but my first love, even before romance, was science fiction. I grew up on it. Those wild stories of other worlds nourished me. It occurred to me today as I devoured the Science Fiction Book Club newsletter/catalog that those are still the stories I love most.

Maybe my muse will stop deserting me so often, if, like Laine, I concentrate more on what I was meant to write. I’m meant to grow from my sci-fi roots so that’s the genre I’m going to explore for the time being.

Don’t worry – I still plan to write about Vance Garrett, and Lucas Vitale and maybe even Graciela and Lord Varrick and Anya, but you can expect to see a lot more of Bernadette’s other worlds and alien warriors as well.

Thanks, Laine, for making me think about what it really means to be true to yourself. We have to write what moves us, no matter what that is and if the market isn’t really, willing and able, so what?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Happy Administrative Professionals Day

It worked out well that I went into the office today. We all got gorgeous roses from the Mayor and Council and I also got a lovely card from my boss. He never fails to remember Secretaries Day, which goes a long way toward keeping emplyees happy.

I've worked in places where employees were expected to feel as though their paycheck was a favor from management. I've also worked in places where I was thanked for my contributions each week. Even as a temp secretary, I was treated as though my coming in and doing whatever work was necessary was a great favor to the company. That's how employees should be treated.

Sure, good jobs are scarce. Employees are actually a financial burden to their employers beyond just their salary especially if they recieve health benefits too, but it never ceases to amaze me that so many employers still treat their workers like yesterday's trash and then whine about loyalty and committment.

If you want your employees to care about their jobs and the company, treat them well, remember the little things like Secretaries Day or remember to say thank you now and then and you'll see loyalty and committment. It always boggles my mind that so many corportate entities don't get that concept.

Anyway, I didn't want this to be a rant. To everyone out there plugging away at an office job, this one is for you.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Eenie Meenie Meinie Mo

I feel sort of like a duck under water today.

I have three stories sitting in front of me that need work - not counting one that I just received some editorial feedback on that could benefit from a good long edit.

I've been bumbling around all day doing a little bit of this and a little bit of that and finally sat down and wrote five pages of one of the paranormals I've been kicking around for so long. This is the one I want to submit to Tor, the one that I have the whole plot worked out and I just don't know how to really begin. It wants to come out sounding chick-lit and that's not the tone of the story at all. I looked over 11 pages I had written some months ago and that's what it was, chick-lit, which has nothing to do with the point I'm trying to make. So I tried a new approach to make the story a little darker, deeper, more philosophical and what is my heroine doing? She's fretting about eating a piece of birthday cake.

What's the deal? Why is it I can write deep, dark proto-synopses and gripping blurbs, but then my characters take over and write a totally different story than the one I had in mind? I feel like I'm completely out of touch with my muse and I'm not sure what to do about it.

Saturday, April 22, 2006


Today I’m busy proofreading Flight of the Valkyrie one last time. I’ve been staring at the screen so long my eyes are killing me. I really wish there was a better way to read something on the computer, the right combination of colors or something that would be easier on the eyes.

I remember back when you had a black screen and glowing green letters and then someone thought, wouldn’t it be better to read black on white like you do in print? It’s better, but I don’t think it’s perfect. Maybe a newsprint color background with larger darker letters would be easier on the eyes?

Ah well. In the mean time, here's a cool picture I took during our trip to the Museum of Natural History in NY on Wednesday. We had a fun time, though wow – the place is expensive. Between admission costs [didn’t museums used to be free?], lunch in the cafeteria and parking we spent over $200. I can justify it because it was educational, but still.

[Hard to believe the manatee isn't real, huh? I love the museum displays in the Hall of Ocean Life.]

Friday, April 21, 2006

Excerpt Friday!

Today’s excerpt is from Ravenstar’s Bride, my science fiction romance due this summer from Amber Quill Press. In this scene, the heroine, Ra’Nara, meets Bren, the hero, for the first time. The word ‘doxie’ refers to the ‘dock side prostitutes’ that frequent most spaceports in this universe. Feha, is a term of endearment meaning ‘precious jewel.’


To escape her dark destiny, Princess Ra’Nara must find a man willing to make her his wife. Captain Ravenstar Bren is more than willing to oblige the beautiful stowaway, but can he convince the proud people of his nomadic nation to accept a ‘land-born’ as the wife of their sovereign?


Ra’Nara stifled a gasp when the captain of the merchant ship leveled his stormy gaze at her. She felt as though her carefully crafted disguise had been ripped away, leaving her terribly exposed. It seemed as if he could see through her battered body and into the depths of her soul.

While the commander had been formidable, and handsome with his light hair and dark eyes, the captain was an even more breathtaking example of fortunate genetics.

Even drawn to her full height, which was slightly above average for a Cadeian female, he towered over her. She found that she had to look up at him. And he looked down on her, his dark brows knit together over those lustrous eyes.

His face was angular and long, with high cheekbones that were accentuated by a shadow of growth on his cheeks and chin. His lips were compressed into a thin line at the moment, but showed hints of sensual fullness. Wavy midnight black hair reached down to his brow.

Like the commander’s, his uniform was a rich shade of blue that contrasted with the burnished bronze of his skin. His eyes picked up the deep hue and seemed to darken as he appraised her.

Ra’Nara’s gaze was drawn to his bare arms, where his own tattoo stretched over corded muscle. Though she could not read the fine Istrian script, she was certain the embellishments to the design proclaimed him a ruler of men. He certainly looked the part.

She’d spent her life among royalty and had never met a man, including her own father, with such a commanding presence. For a moment, she fought the urge to bow to him, as she might have a prince of Cadeia. In that same instant she forgot who she was, or rather what she had become, and despite her trembling, drew herself up in front of him and embarrassed herself with a clumsy attempt at seduction. By the look in his eyes, it was obvious he found her offer distasteful. Such a man as this would have no interest in a common doxie.

She couldn’t take it back though, and the shift in his expression from benign but authoritative curiosity to annoyance, told her she probably shouldn’t waste breath on an apology.

She moved back involuntarily as one of his hands shot out and grasped the shoulder of her cloak. With a lightning fast movement he tore it from her body, exposing not only the pitiful dress beneath, but the purple bruises that marred the delicate skin of her upper arms.

“I suspect this foul garment is to blame for the unfortunate odor in here, feha,” he said as he cast the fabric to the floor. The term of endearment he’d tacked onto his statement gave her pause. There were many things he could have called her, but “precious jewel” was not one she would have expected.

Ra’Nara made no answer at first, though her mind worked furiously. Should she beg his forgiveness for her insolence? Or merely resign herself to the fact that she had most likely garnered herself nothing more than an expedited trip to a Cadeian prison?

“Do you have a name? Or shall I continue to call you feha?” he prompted.

“I...” Ra’Nara paused to swallow some of her ire. She realized she would have to come up with something. “Nara,” she said finally and hoped he would not press for anything more specific.

“Nara…” he said, rolling the name on his tongue. “If I recall, it means ‘gift,’ doesn’t it?”

She nodded.

“I’m told you were interrogated by Commander Kree, my first officer, and you told him nothing of interest.”

“I told him what was pertinent. He threatened to send me to jail.”

The captain leaned back, crossed his arms over his broad chest and grinned at her. “That was no threat.”

“Captain Ravenstar...” Nara said in her best diplomatic voice. “I...apologize, for stowing away on your shuttle. I was desperate. I don’t ask for special treatment, only passage to your next port of call. I will work for my keep...I’ll do...anything.” This time she was careful to keep her request devoid of any innuendo. Offering her body to this man was degrading enough. Having him reject her twice would be unbearable.

In response, his eyes swept over her and again she felt stripped of her defenses. The paper-thin tunic, soiled from hiding in the livestock stalls at the bazaar, might as well have been nonexistent.

“You’d best be careful when making such a statement, feha. A promise like that to the wrong person could land you in hell.”

“I’ve been there, Captain,” she responded soberly, all trace of regal arrogance gone from her expression. “Believe me when I say I’m willing to do anything to escape it.”

* * *

To find out more about Ravenstar’s Bride stay tuned…

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Time for a Rant

I’m fed-up with the medical profession. It seems like more and more, doctors and other medical professionals are treating patients and their families like crap. Thanks to medical insurance, which has practically destroyed the medical profession and reduced the quality of patient care to near nothing, we have to deal with doctors who refuse to admit mistakes, made ridiculous judgment calls and drag us from specialist to specialist when there’s nothing wrong with us in order to cover their butts from a medical insurance standpoint.

It’s getting to be disgusting.

This week, case in point. I took my children for their physicals on Monday and their blood work on Tuesday. On Wednesday I received a message from the doctor’s office saying there was an abnormality in my daughter’s blood work and I needed to call the office. Enter parent panic mode. I was out all day Wednesday and didn’t get the message until late at night, so I called first thing this morning to ask about the blood work. Of course no one could speak to me at the moment so I had to wait for a call back, which came of course while I was out at another appointment. The doctor left a nasty message telling me my daughter’s blood work was perfectly normal and there was no reason for me to call [EXCEPT THAT ONE OF HIS NURSES TOLD ME TO CALL.] I was livid at the tone of his message. As though I was some kind of nuisance. He repeated twice that I didn’t need to call, and that if something was wrong, they would call me. Well, duh. They DID CALL ME!

I called back and told the nurse I expected someone to inform the doctor that I was only following instructions and someone had called me in error. Do you think they even apologized for making an error? No. Never admit your mistakes, I suppose, is the credo of the medical profession these days. Being a writer, I fired off a two page letter of complaint and I don’t really care if they kick us out of the practice. I expect better treatment from a medical professional.

That said, this isn’t the first time we’ve been given the runaround. In addition to this mess, they also told me Monday that my daughter’s vision was a problem. She had a complete eye exam in October and everything was fine so when they told me her vision was 20/70 I got concerned, made another appointment with the eye doc who said not only is her vision 20/25, it’s better than it was in October.

I’m tired of hearing people get the runaround from their doctors, false information, bad medical advice. A friend of a friend was recently told her child had leukemia only to find out [and gladly so] the diagnosis was something much less serious. Another friend was sent to three different specialists to diagnose her son’s sinusitis because the original doctor couldn’t be 100% that was the problem. My husband’s doctor recently suspected he’d had a silent heart attack. He had to go to a cardiologist to be told his heart was perfectly healthy. I understand it’s better to be safe than sorry, but when someone’s medical condition is the issue, isn’t it better to be right than wrong? What happened to pride and efficiency?

It seems like doctors today are afraid to make a diagnosis. They can’t use their intuition anymore, so they need every diagnosis to be backed up by a specialist who invariably disagrees with their assessment. Who can you trust? The doctor who tells you you’d better go right to a specialist because you have a serious problem, or the doctor who tells you you’re fine and you have nothing to worry about?

Now I’m left wondering who is the patient with the abnormal blood work? Is there a child with a name similar to my daughter’s whose parents SHOULD have been notified but weren’t? Was the nurse who called wrong, or was the doctor? They said my son’s blood work was fine. Could they have been wrong about that, too?

I’m not a worrier – well, I’m the least worrisome of my family and friends who tell me I’m very calm in an emergency. I try to reduce stress by not fretting over things since I’ve learned that panic, worry, hysteria don’t help any situation. But now I have to keep in the back of my mind that doctors do make mistakes, far too often, and can we really be sure of anything they tell us?

End of rant.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Books I've read and why

I’ve been thinking about what makes a reader pick up a book, whether it’s a print book in a brick and mortar bookstore, or an e-book from an on-line publisher. What draws a reader in?

I was a reader before I was a writer, not much before since I started writing in grammar school, but still…the first books I read were those given to me by teachers and parents. I bought Nancy Drew mysteries by the armload because I loved them and since there were so many, I was in heaven. Then I moved on to Star Trek novels and again, there were more of those published every month until I couldn’t keep up anymore. I also read science fiction and romance and wished someone would one day combine the two.

Today I read a little bit of everything. In the side bar you’ll see I have Elizabeth Kostova’s The Historian listed. I’m in a holding pattern on it. It’s very well written, an interesting story, and SOOOOO long, that I just can’t fathom sticking to it until the end. How did I get it? I heard all the hype about it and borrowed it from a friend who also said she had a hard time getting through it.

I’m also reading the angel book by Terry Lynn Taylor, which is great for inspiration though I don’t agree with everything she says about angels. I picked this book up while looking for more spiritual reading material. I haven’t read a lot of inspirational books in a while and I miss that uplifting feeling of reading philosophical stuff. I have a bunch of books in my TBR pile, but I still buy new things.

I recently finished Gena Showalter’s Jewel of Atlantis. A fast read which I needed to counteract The Historian. I picked that up because everyone at Romance Divas was talking about it.

Before that I read You’ve Got Male by Elizabeth Bevarly. I got that from the Harlequin Reader Service. Now I’m reading Vigil by Robert Masello, which I picked up at the supermarket because of the cover – [fossils in an underwater cave hooked me immediately].

In my TBR pile I also have The Time Traveler’s Wife, borrowed from my mother who thinks I will like it and Heather Graham’s Ghost Walk which I received at the NJRW Conference in October.

Whew. That only scratches the surface. It’s interesting that for someone who buys books all the time, most of what I read are books that other people have given to me. But the ones I choose myself are usually chosen based on interesting covers or word of mouth from other readers and writers whose opinions I respect.

What makes you choose a book?

Friday, April 14, 2006

Special Excerpt Friday!

Today’s excerpt is an unedited scene from The Soul Jar, my action/adventure romance with a paranormal twist. The Soul Jar was originally going to be released as part of New Concept Publishing’s RELIC II anthology, but is now going to be released as a standalone story. Look for The Soul Jar coming in June, 2006.


When Bree Sennett’s search for the fabled Soul Jar of Ammonptah brings her face to face with Mason “Chance” MacKenzie, the pain of his previous betrayal mixes with the joy of finding him alive. When she discovers Chance is after the Soul Jar as well, she’s drawn back into his dangerous world and into his arms again.

Chance MacKenzie left Bree two years ago, faking his own death to save her life, and his own. Now the woman who stole his heart is about to steal the Soul Jar, but a life he promised to protect hangs in the balance.

Chance can’t expect Bree to forgive him, or to still love him after what he had to do, but can he trust her to help him complete his mission before he loses her forever?

THE SOUL JAR [unedited]

The fine hairs on the nape of Bree’s neck rose and her skin tingled when she saw the jar. Her chest felt tight and the corners of her eyes burned with more unshed tears, but these, at least didn’t embarrass her. To find the mythical Soul Jar – to stand within reach of something that, if all the legends were true, held the life essences of two lovers, punished for an eternity for the sin of wanting each other – was a cause well worth shedding a tear or two. Meeting Chance MacKenzie again, finding out the man she’d once loved more than life itself had returned from the grave, should have paled in comparison.

Or maybe it was the prospect of having to split her profits with him that made her misty eyed. As if she’d make a profit on this mission to begin with.

She blinked to clear her suddenly blurry vision and turned on him. “Well? Did you find what you came for?”

The path of his smoky gaze told her he had.

“If you want it, you’re going to have to shoot me.” Boldly, she turned her back on him again and reached for the jar, but her throat burned with the cavalier threat. She remembered that fateful morning and the tearing pain in the center of her chest when she’d realized her lover had a gun pointed at her heart.

Don’t make me shoot you, luv, he’d said with that charming smile she’d come to adore. Get out of bed nice and slow. Get dressed and get lost. Our little dalliance is over now.

She shoved the vile memory to the back of her mind and reached for the jar. It slid into her hand as though it belonged there. Cool and smooth as an egg, it fit perfectly in her palm. Overcome with the urge to cradle it against her and protect it, Bree glowered at Chance over her shoulder.

He held her daring gaze as she liberated a folded knapsack from under her voluminous sweatshirt and slipped the jar inside.

“What’s the matter, MacKenzie? Don’t have it in you to kill me?” Again, she wanted to add. Her heart had withered and died two years ago. She’d been functioning on autopilot ever since. She’d thought too often afterwards that perhaps she should have called his bluff back then and forced him to shoot her. At least then her pain would have ended swiftly.

“I’m not armed,” he replied, tracking her movements as she edged toward the narrow aisle between the shelves.

“I don’t believe you.” He hadn’t gotten his nickname by being unprepared.

He shrugged. “Try me. If you want to carry the jar out of here, I won’t stop you. But I promise you, luv, you won’t be the one who ends up with it.”

* * *

To find out more about The Soul Jar stay tuned…

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Immortal Lovers

I just got the cover flat for Immortal Lovers! The official release date is April 15th but there’s already a page up at Amazon for it.

I love the front cover blurb: One kiss is all it takes to fall under their immortal seduction…

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Can plot dreams become dream plots?

I love it when my dreams have a plot.

The best plot dream I ever had ended up being the inspiration for my novel Conjured in Flames. The final story turned out a little different from the dream, but overall the important kernel of the story was there.

Conjured started out as a dream about a fire in a strip mall. In the dream, I was a real estate agent, showing strip mall to a prospective buyer. When the fire began, we went into the basement [probably not a good place to go if the mall is on fire in real life] and when the flames finally died down, we emerged in a different place. Where the town had been in the distance before, now stood a castle.

The dream didn’t go on much farther than that, but it was enough to build a story on. The story took on a life of its own and the details changed a lot, but the idea of fire as a catalyst for change remained the same.

It’s interesting how the brain works. Last night I had a plot dream. Technically it was a fan-fiction dream. I love those, too.

I was only a passing fan of the TV series JAG, but being a die-hard shipper, I had a soft spot for the relationship between Sara MacKenzie and Harmon Rabb. In the dream I had, Mac and Harm were in a car driving to a naval hospital. They were arguing about the transfer Harm had requested. Mac didn’t want him to leave but she didn’t want to admit how she felt about him. [Unresolved sexual tension, even in a dream!] They arrived at the hospital and Harm went off to a meeting and Mac went off to one of the wards to investigate and an epidemic broke out. Mac was trapped in the isolation ward with the sick patients and Harm was on the outside, unable to get in because of the lock down.

I never get to sleep long enough to finish these really cool dreams, so I don’t know what happened. But I’d love to find out. This certainly isn’t a unique plot, but it made for a great dream and who knows, it might even provide an ‘adventure seed’ for a future story. Not that I need any more seeds. What I really need is a bigger garden to grow them in.

Ah well. Off to sleep, perchance to dream…

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Diva Blogs

I've finally visited all the Diva blogs listed in the side bar. Now I'm going to try to visit them all again and leave a comment if possible.

Monday, April 10, 2006

And the winners are...

The Winner of Jennifer’s Birthday Bonanza is:


Who requested a copy of Fresh Blood

Please e-mail me at and let me know your file preference
.html, .pdf or .lit


The winner of Bernadette’s Birthday Bonanza is

Shuck Ying

Who requested a copy of Hunter’s Moon

Please e-mail me at and let me know your file preference
.html, .pdf or .lit


Thank you everyone who participated. There will be more contests in the future so stay tuned.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Tomorrow is. . .

1. My birthday and the day I announce the winners of my Birthday Bonanza Contest! Good luck to everyone and thank you again to everyone who entered and wished me a happy Birth-aversary! I will also post the winners on my website contest pages. You still have time to enter: So click here to read the rules.

2. My blog day at Amber Quill Press Authors Blog. I haven’t written my blog post yet, so it will be as much a surprise to me as to everyone else.

3. Futuristic and Sci-Fi Day at New Concepts Publishing Readers Group. This is the last day of the Backlist Blitz so hop on over and check out some sizzling excerpts from the wonderful authors at NCP!

4. Monday. Nuff said.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Strange Behavior

Ever watch a dog dream? I get a kick out of watching my dog sleep. He used to sleep curled on his back with all four paws in the air. For a while he slept with his nose buried in the cushions of the love seat. Now that his bed is on the floor, he sleeps with his body on the cushions and his head on the floor [and I know he does that just to make me feel bad for him].

No matter what position he’s in, though usually mid-afternoon during his power nap, he has a dream. I know he’s dreaming because his feet usually move as if he’s running. Sometimes he whimpers or even barks in his sleep and paws at things like maybe in his dream he’s digging a hole or something.

I usually stop working and watch for a while and just wonder what he might be doing in his furry little mind. Is he chasing a squirrel or finding a steak someone accidentally left buried in the yard? Is he running after a ball or a cat or just taking a stroll through dog heaven where everything is edible and nobody makes him wipe his feet after playing in the mud?

When he wakes up from his dream, he usually looks a little dazed like he’s temporarily forgotten where he is. He blinks a few times and looks around to get his bearings, then he usually expects a treat and a trip outside. I guess maybe he’s looking for that steak.


Don’t forget, the contest continues until April 9th and I will announce the winners on the 10th. You can respond to any current post on my blog as well as the original contest post!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Best Seller Excerpt!

I just found out that Ken’Ja is #1 on the Amber Quill Press 1st Quarter Best Seller List!

I’d planned on vampires today to go along with NCP’s Back List Blitz Paranormal Day, but I figured Ken’Ja warranted a short, and hopefully enticing excerpt. Next week – something brand new. . .maybe from The Soul Jar.

5 ANGELS! Bernadette Gardner instantly grabs the reader’s attention… Ken’Ja has earned 5 Angels for its imaginative story, passion, and touching romance! – Shayley, Fallen Angel Reviews


The Ken'Ja scoured his body in fevered waves and he awoke screaming. Where was his woman? He needed her now! He needed to sate his desires before the pain became unbearable.

He rolled onto his stomach and pulled himself up on his hands and knees. Crouching low like an animal, he scanned the cave for any sign of her.

Her scent came to him from the spot where she'd rested that afternoon. He pawed at the damp earth and brought the essence of her to his nose.

He'd find her.

Tige raced from the cave, incoherent and directionless.

Find her! Take her!

The Ken'Ja ruled his thoughts now and his tepir ruled his body. By daybreak, he swore to himself with a groan, his body would rule hers or one of them would die.

* * *

To find out more about Ken’Ja, go to:


Don’t forget, the contest continues until April 9th and I will announce the winners on the 10th. You can respond to any current post on my blog as well as the original contest post!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

More on Taking Chances

I'd wanted to be a full-time novelist ever since I was ten years old… - novelist Nikki Gemmell

This article could have been written by me [except for the BBC part]. I stumbled across this first thing this morning in between checking my e-mail and my message boards. I saw a little image on my home page that lead me to the International Museum of Women on Yahoo Health.

So, even though I'd always wanted to be a writer, when I went to university I thought, "I can't just be a poet sobbing in a garret because I can't make a living out of that."

I never usually click on things that look like advertisements but this one caught my attention and in keeping with the angel theme from yesterday, I had to wonder why I made my way to this article. After blogging about guilt and responsibility, it certainly helped my state of mind to find another writer in the same boat.

...that the most satisfying life is a life doing what you really want to do.

I can’t agree more.

Here’s the link to the homepage. Lot’s of interesting articles.


Don’t forget, the contest continues until April 9th and I will announce the winners on the 10th. You can respond to any current post on my blog as well as the original contest post!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Risks and Rewards

To know and follow our deepest aspirations may require taking a risk or two.
Terry Lynn Taylor, Messengers of Love, Light and Grace

I’m reading another book about angels. The above quote hit me square in the eye yesterday as kind of a little reminder [maybe one of those messages from an angel?] that we can’t accomplish much in this life without taking risks. I still struggle with doubt and worst of all, guilt, every day for wanting to pursue my writing career. No one is heaping the guilt on me but me. My husband is completely supportive; I know my kids are benefiting from having a mom who is home 90% of the time, and even my mother has said I have nothing to feel guilty about. Yet I still feel sort of like a thief, stealing this time I’ve taken to work on my dream as if I don’t deserve it.

I feel like I have to produce every day or else I’m not justifying my decision. That, in itself sucks some of the joy from this endeavor. There’s no one ticking off marks on a calendar or tallying my royalty checks to see if they measure up to what my yearly salary might have been at a full time job. Nevertheless, I hover around my computer even when I’m too tired to think creatively, figuring if I put in another hour I’ll be that much closer to my goal.

This quote reminded me that even though I’m taking a risk by pursuing my dream, I still need to treat it as a dream, not a chore. I think I’m going to knock off early today and read a little more about angels.


Don’t forget, the contest continues until April 9th and I will announce the winners on the 10th. You can respond to any current post on my blog as well as the original contest post!

Angel Image

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Today was one of those utterly non-productive days. I sat here at the computer a lot starting at pages with words on them and trying to make something sensical come out on the screen in front of me and all that came out was gar-bage.

It's a mental block. I've written synopses before. I can do it. But this one is killing me. I'm getting nowhere. I polished my query letter, did some research on agents and even wrote a brief pre-story synopsis for a short anthology story I'm planning for Amber Quill. No problems there.

I'm sure I'm worrying too much about it and I should just do it and not get so uptight, but I feel like this synopsis is what's going to sell the book. Not the query, not the chapters, but the synopsis. Right or wrong, it's making me insane. I need to take a break and gain some perspective. Aaaaaaagh!

Don’t forget, my contest continues until April 9th and I will announce the winners on the 10th.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Thank you!

Thank you to everybody who has entered my contest so far, either here or by e-mail. I’m thrilled to see which books everyone is interested in.

Don’t forget, the contest continues until April 9th and I will announce the winners on the 10th.

Between now and then I hope to complete the synopsis of my contemporary romantic fantasy and start querying agents. I’m trying not to be nervous about it. Hey, it’s just another part of the process, right? I can’t chicken out now.

In other news...

Fresh Blood just received a 5-Heart review from Suite Magazine!

5 Hearts The night heats up …with this intoxicating quick read ~Lysa Demorest SUITE Magazine

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Two Voices, Two Winners Birthday Bonanza!

To commemorate the 10th Anniversary of my 29th Birthday I’ll be announcing the winners of my Birthday Bonanza contest on April 10th. Anyone who posts to my blog with the name of the book they’d like to read, between now and April 9th will be eligible to win their choice of any one of my available electronic titles. Or e-mail me the name of the book you’d like to win at or

All you have to do is tell me which Bernadette Gardner or Jennifer Colgan title you’d like to win. I’ll pick two winners at random on April 10th and announce your names here! One will win their choice of Jennifer’s titles and one will win their choice of Bernadette’s titles.

[Winners will receive the download of their choice of electronic title in .pdf, .html or .lit format. Winner must be 18 years or older]