Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A crush-worthy politician is as good as a fairytale prince

It's Election Day here in Virginia.
If this blog was for the newspaper, then this is where I'd, once again, give you a history lesson on democracy, tell you to do your own research on the political candidates and urge you to VOTE.
Instead, I've decided to dedicate this space to one of my favorite heroes I've written, Ethan Butler of THE SENATOR'S SCANDALOUS AFFAIR. *sigh*
The idea of a crush-worthy politician, at least to me, is as scrumptious as a fairytale prince.
You can read a blurb about THE SENATOR'S SCANDALOUS AFFAIR here.
In this scene, Ethan, a senator in the Virginia General Assembly who is mounting a gubernatorial campaign, has just given a press conference. The heroine, newspaper reporter Rachel Reynolds, is one of hundreds in the audience.

Here's what she sees -- and feels. Enjoy! : )

When the speech was over, reporters flanked him on all sides asking questions while they had him cornered.

Rachel hung back watching and listening to Ethan field those questions. With his charm and intelligence he had those reporters practically drooling all over their microphones and tape recorders.

She noted the regal tilt of his head, his perfect cultured voice. He practically oozed old money, style and power. Rachel was sweating in autumn’s afternoon heat. She couldn’t even see one bead of perspiration on Ethan’s forehead.

A sultry, blonde television reporter asked him a question then held the microphone close to Ethan’s mouth. He smiled that mischievous little smile, and tilted his head, answering in that bone-jarring voice that made Rachel think of a dark bedroom and sweat-slicked skin.

The whole scene appeared almost erotic. Rachel took a deep breath, trying to clear her head. She didn’t need any more reminders of Ethan’s political prowess or sexual magnetism. She’d experienced it herself just hours earlier.

Rachel shoved her camera and notepad into her bag. She had seen, and heard, enough.

She’d gotten just what she needed — the information for her article and a dose of reality. She was right to deny the attraction she felt for Eth—the senator. Just because she’d felt a spark didn’t mean he had.

Hell, if the rumors about the Butler men were true, he’d probably “sparked” female reporters all over Virginia.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Yay! What? Why?

So, I'm still finding it hard to believe, but I'm a finalist in Passionate Reads' Second Annual Pitch Contest.What? (Happy dancing and ice-cream-eating ensue.)
Thank you to everyone for reading, commenting and voting for my entry NO SWEETER LOVE.
The public voting portion of the contest has concluded, but if anyone is interested in reading Chapter 1, you can find it here.
My sincerest thanks to the Passionate Reads' bloggers/writers for organizing and hosting the contest and Grace Bradley, editor with Ellora's Cave, for taking the time to read and judge the entries.
I'm not a contest junkie, per se. I'm not one of those writers who enters dozens of contests per year; however, I have a plan, and oftentimes, I find that certain contests fit nicely into the goals I've set for myself.
For example, I'm currently plotting a series of novellas set in Union, a fictional rural town, located in the North Carolina mountains. I'm finishing up Book One, No Sweeter Love (hopefully this weekend.)
The Union Series: First Comes Scandal, Then Comes Marriage -- epitomizes the type of romance I love to write -- small towns, big scandals, happy endings. I think small-town, community dynamics are completely fascinating. Finding the illicit in the everyday -- oh yeah, I'm so there. : )
Why novellas? Because I'm looking at building (fingers crossed) a fan base for the types of contemporary romances I write, and I see e-published novellas as a great way to achieve this goal. I don't expect someone to spend seven or eight dollars and invest hours of their time on my first novel, which they may or may not like. (I think that's asking a lot of someone.) However, I think a reader is more likely to take a chance on an unknown author if they're only investing a couple of bucks and an hour or so of their time on that shorter read.
Why a series?
Because I'm hoping that when someone reads that first novella, they're going to love it. And they're going to want to read more about Union and the quirky, creative, original characters they find there. I'm hoping they'll want to read more about the romantic entanglements of say, the town doctor, police officers, the mayor, etc. That means they'll buy Book Two, Book Three... Getting the picture here? : )

Does anyone else have a business plan? How did you develop it? What's working? What's not working?