Friday, January 30, 2009

The Workshop Willies

I’ve turned into a Nervous Nelly. And I’m not normally a Nervous Nelly at all. BUT-- Recently I agreed to do a workshop on Story Boarding for my home chapter of RWA, the Kentucky Romance Writers. I have a couple of months to get it together before our yearly retreat-workshop. It’s not until the 28th of March. But being the teacher I am, I have to obsess over it for a few weeks and get my thoughts together.

Story boarding is an easy process and I do it because I’m such a visual person it helps me keep my plot advancing, encourages me to brainstorm, and enables me to track my character/romance development. But doing it, and teaching it to others are two different things. And trying to make it interesting and entertaining for them—well—I’m not ready to go there, yet.

I stand up before six hundred and sixty elementary children every week and teach them about art history and art. In the fall each year, I teach a college class, people who want to be Elementary Teachers. So public speaking isn’t normally a big deal.

But standing before a group of your writing peers, published and unpublished---

All right I’m going to say it out loud —it’s a whole different STORY. It’s like the dream you have when you’re under lots of stress that you’ve shown up for work naked and no one will offer you their coat and you try and hide behind a waste basket the size of a toilet paper roll. And – well you get the idea.

So I’ll do my pretend confidence thing for a while. It’s no big deal—I can do this—I’m the teacher—I can teach anything. But to be honest, once I get up there to give my presentation, I’ll have bats in my belly. I’ll break out in a cold sweat. My breathing will be quick and labored. I’ll be wondering if I’m going to barf in public or just pass out. God forbid either should happen. Or maybe the passing out thing won’t be too bad and I’ll be able to get out of –naw- I said I’d do it, and I will.

The dread of waiting my turn will make it worse. Let me do my presentation first thing, like while everyone is out in the lobby getting coffee. That would be the perfect time.

But once I get on my feet and hand out my visual aids—got to have visual aids since story boarding is a visual process—I’ll take a deep breath and settle into my teaching rhythm. And I will survive the experience. And I may even have fun. I AM going to have FUN.

I’ve given birth three times and survived. It can’t be any worse than that. CAN IT?


Tell me how you survive your public speaking nerves. I’m open to any suggestions.

Write on,
Teresa Reasor

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wednesday Potpourri: BIG NEWS

Add a splash of this and a pinch of that...what do you get? Some Wednesday potpourri.

Today I wanted to mention just a few fantastic things coming up at Inspiration, Ink. For a blog that just launched with the new year, I couldn't be happier with the response we're getting from you, the readers. I truly appreciate the comments and emails I'm getting both here and on my MySpace from Inspiration, Ink. visitors.

As wonderful as our launch month has been, I am positive the month of February is going to be even better. Why? Not only because of the multi-talented roster of authors we have here at Inspiration, Ink., or because of the huge contest we're hosting for Valentine's Day -- but because we've got two powerhouse guests coming up that I am breathless with anticipation to reveal.

Have I got your attention now? :)

First in our February line-up, multi-published Avon author Jenna Petersen (who also writes for their Avon Red line as Jess Michaels), has graciously agreed to guest blog at Inspiration, Ink. on the 11th. What better way to bring in Valentine's Day than with one of America's premiere romance authors. With eleven books in print and two more on the way, Jenna is making a permanent mark on the romance world.

Not only a celebrated author, Jenna spends some of her precious free time running a website dedicated to giving aspiring authors a helping hand in the publishing industry. Receiving over 200,000 hits per month, The Passionate Pen is proudly celebrating its 10th anniversary. Way to go Jenna -- and as a newly published author who used your site as a resource when I was struggling for answers, I say thank you!

The next author to join our blog with a much anticipated interview is one who I've followed religiously since I was a tween sneaking off to read the too-explicit-for-my-curious-eyes works of romantic fiction. In my own personal coup de gras, I am proud to roll out the pink carpet for a phenominal lady who's been on too many best seller lists to count -- Ms. Virginia Henley.

The book that originally hooked me on romance was a Scottish historical called Tempted. The story of a flame-haired hoyden named Valentina Kennedy who is forced into an unwanted union with rival clansman Black Ram Douglas, Tempted was, and remains to this day, my favorite historical romance. Virginia can spin a tale like no other, and I am beyond excited that she's agreed to be our guest on February 18th.

If you could ask her anything, what would you ask her? A shameless ploy for help with my interview questions?? Maybe... Come on, I'm sweatin' here!

Make sure you mark those dates down on your calendars because it's going to get interesting. Until then...I've prepared a little eye candy to inspire your day.

Happy Reading,
Tracy Preston

Monday, January 26, 2009

Hero Archetype: The Warrior

The Warrior

Warrior. The word, hard edged and blunt, brings to mind a lean muscular man in uniform or a medieval Celt swinging a sword. He recognizes evil and wants to destroy it. And he is merciless in his quest to right the wrongs it perpetrates on the innocent. But no matter how dangerous the task, failure is not an option. He never dwells on the possibility he may die. So strong is his sense of right, he accepts that he may have to do just that to achieve justice.

The Warrior’s sense of honor cannot be tainted. He is above bribery, is self-sacrificing, and is faithful to a fault. Through his strong sense of right and wrong, and his deeds of heroism, he earns the respect and loyalty of those who follow him.

He expects other people to live up to his high standards of nobility. Because he views things as black and white without any gray areas, it leaves him open to betrayal.

But fighting the good fight is only one side of this character. Once his loyalty or love is given it’s unshakable. He will move heaven and earth to protect and provide for his loved ones. He makes no excuse for anything he might do to that end.

The Warrior is sometimes an avenger. He steps up to the plate when others run away. Though he wants to live his life like any other man, he is sometimes forced to stand as the last defense rather than leaving those weaker in the grip of evil.

But despite all this nobility and strength, every Warrior has the same major problem---finding a woman strong enough, self-sufficient enough, and brave enough to love a man who repeatedly throws himself into the path of danger, and is forever risking his life, and possibly hers. But being a Warrior, he never says die, never gives up, and once he finds that woman, his love never wavers.

And that leads to the burning question “What kind of heroine archetype would best fit the Warrior?” Tell me what you think ladies and gents.

Be sure to join us next week for another installment of the Hero Archetypes.

Posted by: Teresa Reasor

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Destiny's Captive Gets 5 Hearts

(Copied from The Romance Studio.)

Destiny's Captive [The Destiny's Series Book 1]
Tracy Preston
Historical Romance
Available from The Wild Rose Press
ISBN: 1-60154-363-8
November 2008

Lucian DeLattimer has been commissioned by King George to act as a pirate. As Captain Blackwell he and his crew of the Pleasure Seeker become infamous on the Atlantic Ocean pillaging cargo vessels from America. On one such excursion the crew of a ship give up without a fight but one feisty female puts up more resistance than all the men. Angeline Montgomery has lost her father to murderers and now falls prey to a pirate. But at least she refuses to go down without a fight.

Tracy Preston pens an excellent love story woven with many levels of suspense at sea and on dry land. Lucian and Angeline make a feisty couple as their relationship grows. The problems they face at sea pale in comparison to the ones they find back in England. Whoever killed Angeline’s father has her on their list as the next victim. As if that’s not bad enough Lucian finds out his fiancée may be the daughter of the man who killed his mother.

Secondary characters like Winnie, Lucian’s younger sister, add much to the story as she interacts with the main players and her own nemesis, Lord Gabriel Kinsey. Seems everywhere Angeline turns she runs into one of Lucian’s exes. That often makes for some interesting confrontations.

The bad guys are hard to catch. It’s difficult to get the couples to make real commitments. Sounds like the twenty-first century even though this one is set in 1785. Ms. Preston crafts the story the way I like them with a natural progression rather than a lot of flashbacks and digressing to fill in information except when necessary to set up the next scene. I look forward to more books from this talented author.

Overall rating:
Sensuality rating: Very sensual

Reviewer: Dee Dailey
January 14, 2009

Friday, January 23, 2009

That Montana Summer

Okay, okay. So, I'm constantly asked if I really did have a "Montana Summer." The answer is. both yes and no. Yes, I did travel to Montana on two separate occasions. But, no, there wasn't a hunky cattleman named Dalton. Darn the luck. :)

Having always lived in the Midwest, I felt I needed to experience Montana and the west for myself, with my own eyes. Because libraries and the internet can only get you so far. For example, I learned the dirt out west is red, compared to our traditional brown dirt; mountain thunderstorms seem monstrous, the gathering clouds so low in the sky with the increased elevation; and lastly, you can drive for miles and miles and not see one good-looking cowboy!

There's a scene in the book where Samantha comments about finding a good song on the radio as they pass through Kansas. This is a prime example of needing to experience some things on your own... because there really weren't any tunes to be found, and as the odometer neared 600 miles for the day, suddenly the sound of my own voice became appealing!

I did take one of my horses with me both times I traveled
to Montana. This is a frequently asked question as well. Since I have several horses, it seemed natural. It's a long haul for a horse. The horse I took was quiet and used to being hauled long distances. Believe it or not, they have Bed & Breakfast facilities that cater to people vacationing or traveling with horses. They are called Bed, Breakfast, & Barns and, gosh, do they make life easy. Most of them are "mom and pop" type places. It's kind of like staying over at your grandma's house - your laundry gets done, your horse is treated with extra apples, and damn is the food good!

Gosh, I don't want to hog the blog. Next time we'll talk about the different ranches I visited and I'll give you some insight in case "That Montana Summer" inspires you to take a trip out west!

Until then,
Sloan Seymour

By: Sloan Seymour

Get Your Copy Today!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Hero Archetype: The Swashbuckler

When I started researching this blog, it was originally intended to cover the entire spectrum of hero archetypes. However, I quickly discovered there was way too much muscle-bound goodness to cover in just one blog. So, for the next several weeks, Inspiration, Ink. will be dedicating its Mondays to a different hero archetype (Now that is a "case of the Mondays" I can live with!) -- beginning with this week's hero:

The Swashbuckler

Typically the first thing that springs to mind when you hear the word swashbuckler is an ale-guzzling, sail-setting, skirt-chasing pirate. In this particular instance, that is not always the case. Take Maverick, for example. He falls nicely into the swashbuckler category because of his confidence and love of danger. He thrives on teetering on the edge of disaster, and isn't afraid to break a rule or two in the process. Maverick seeks out danger and flips it the bird just for fun.

There are actually two sub-categories who comfortably qualify for swashbuckler status -- the Daredevil (like our friend Maverick) and the Explorer. The Explorer is usually a tad more goal oriented, perhaps he's on a quest for an ancient artifact or a king's ransom in gold. Or maybe someone's kidnapped his girlfriend and stolen his truck and he is hellbent on getting them back, as was the case with Jack Burton's character in Big Trouble In Little China. Regardless of his end goal, this fella is going to do whatever it takes to get what he wants, consequences be darned.

While the swashbuckler does have a certain appeal, he also has drawbacks to accompany that sexy smile. For one, he is not the most dependable sort. He tends to be selfish at times, so intent is he on what he wants. And to top it all off, he's single-minded, stubborn and doesn't stay put for very long. It could make for some uncomfortable family gatherings when the hubby is a no-show because he's gone off half-cocked - again - on some crusade or other.

But, if you're a woman who can deal with midnight phone calls, canceled plans and bountiful good excuses, all the while getting your pants charmed off (possibly literally), this is definitely your man. It's a thrill a minute while you're in his company, and this sexy adrenaline junky never misses an opportunity to show a girl a good time.

Posted By: Tracy Preston

Don't forget to drop by next Monday when Teresa drops in to bring us our next hero archetype -- the Warrior.

Friday, January 16, 2009

A Wonderful New Addition

The Pink Ladies are tickled -- -- to announce the addition of a brand new member to our blog. Published Kentucky romance author Devon Matthews has come on board to make our blog even pinker than ever before! Join us in giving her a warm welcome...

Hi, all! My name is Devon Matthews. Like the other Pink Ladies, I'm a Kentucky gal. I'm also a wife and mother. For the past thirty years, I've been a stay-at-home mom, caring for a special needs child. I've also been told I'm something of an artist, but-aside from my family-the one thing I find most fulfilling is writing romance.

I've been writing stories since I learned to put the alphabet down on paper and form words. Books were my escape into a fantasy world and words were the pure magic that took me there. During my childhood, our tv was mostly tuned in to westerns. I became fascinated with all things to do with the Old West, and the men and women who lived there. It was the last untamed era in our country's history and the times were wildly romantic to a young girl's imagination. I was hooked!

Although I dabble in Fantasy and Futuristic romance, most of my heroes take form wearing spurs and with Peacemakers strapped low around their hips. In my debut novel, "Angel in the Rain," my hero, Rane is a gunfighter with a reputation for being deadly on the draw and with the ladies. Currently, I'm working on my next Western Historical Romance, which features a headstrong alpha cowboy who knows what he wants and won't stop until he gets it--and his heroine. Gotta love those guys.

Now you know about my love for westerns. So, tell me, what's your favorite romance genre? What in particular draws you to the genre again and again? Also, was it a book, a movie, or something else altogether that hooked you?

Thank you for stopping by the Pink Ladies Blog. I hope you'll come back often. Happy Reading!


Thursday, January 8, 2009

Where Do Heroes Come From??

Romance novels have captured the hearts of readers for decades by showcasing some of the most compelling heroes in fiction's history. From swashbuckling pirates and highland warriors, to sexy vampires and misunderstood werewolves, to intense homicide detectives and lusty bounty hunters, romance novels continue to capture the essence of the alpha-hero.

But with all that testosterone flying around, it begs the question: Where does the inspiration for these uber-warriors stem from?

I tossed that very question out into a pool of published authors and this is some of their feedback:

"I have to admit that my hubby has the most awesome blue eyes. :) Those eyes were first things that drew me to him. So if I'm writing a blue-eyed hero, you can bet that at least a few of my real-life hero's characteristics have been thrown in. Of course, if my hero says something that's downright stubborn and opinionated, that might of been a hubby inspired moment, too. After being married for twenty years and learning what makes him tick, I can't see how any hero I write wouldn't have at least one or two of my hubby's traits." -- Nita Wick, author of Wagonmaster

"All my heroes possess a little bit of what I personally find attractive in a man. The hero of my first novel, Canyon Wolf Bride was gleaned entirely from my husband. My hero, Sean Wilson has the same body, mind and heart as my husband Michael Sean Wilson...oooh and the same stubble...yum. And yes, my husband is also a werewolf." -- Alisha Paige, author of Nocturnally Vexed

"It is generally the heroine who appears in my mind first. After I'm sure what she's like, I create the hero she needs." -- Magdalena Scott, author of The Blank Book

"My dad was in the Marine Corps. We spent time on the base at the PX and Commissary, base related activities, special ceremonies and the baseball games all the guys played together. Almost all our close friends were Marines and their families. I think that warrior personality must have stuck in my psyche because that's where I get my inspiration for my heroes. It didn't occur to me, until recently, that I almost always write the warrior hero and why. And there's nothing on the planet that gets my heart to pumping like the sight of a man in uniform. (Unless it's a Scotsman in a kilt of course.) But that's another story." -- Teresa Reasor, author of Captive Hearts

The truth is, inspiration can come from anywhere -- overactive imaginations, a chance encounter with a smoking hot waiter or parking attendant, the hunky guy jogging past you in the park, the heart melting presence of the real life hero sleeping on the pillow next to you... In the end, it seems safe to conclude that a real hero comes from the one special place you all cherish the most -- your heart.

Read on, heroines!

Make sure you drop by our next blog where we'll examine a few different types of heroes and why we love them. This one's gonna include pictures, so it could get HOT...

Monday, January 5, 2009

Teresa's Guest Blogging

Good day to you Pink readers! Make sure you take a moment out tomorrow to drop by fellow author Terry Odell's blog where our very own Teresa Reasor is guest blogging. Someone may have hinted at a discussion of Teresa's fascinating hobby?!

Hop on over cause you never know what she's up to. Leave her a comment, she'd love to see you there.

Until then, a few faces to make your day just a little bit pinker!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Valentine's Day Giveaway

January 01, 2009 - Februray 14, 2009

To kick off the launch of Inspiration, Ink., we are announcing our very first contest -- a Valentine's Day prize giveaway for not one, but three lucky visitors!

We want everyone to know how much we appreciate our readers, so we decided one way to spread the Valentine's Day spirit would be to gift a few of you with a romance inspired goodie basket. Included in the grand prize basket will be autographed copies of our latest releases, a few other romantic selections, a little something for your sweet tooth, and a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card. (You can't beat that at Hallmark!)

How do you enter? That's the easy part. Leave us a comment in the comments section below with your name, a valid email address so we can contact you if you win, and a quick note telling us why you love romance. That's it, it's that simple.

We will choose a first, second and third place winner on February 14, and you will be notified by email if your entry is selected. No purchase of any kind necessary, postage paid by the authors.

Our contest page will be expanding with time, to include other fun and exciting things for you to enjoy when you stop by. So, don't forget to come back and say hi. While deciding who's going to be your lucky valentine, just click the link and "think pink."

Good luck!!



Now there's a whole new way to win. As an added bonus, I've decided to hold a smaller contest from now through the month of February to go hand in hand with the Valentine's Day Giveaway. All you have to do is subscribe to our blog and you're entered to win an autographed print copy of DESTINY'S CAPTIVE. On February 28th, I'll randomly choose one person from Inspiration, Ink's list of blog followers and announce the winner in the following blog. Sign up to Inspiration, Ink. today for this extra chance to win!

Tracy Preston

An Introduction

What does pink mean to you?

Perhaps it’s a coveted designer label wrapped in the finest silk, or a shining reminder of the importance of breast cancer awareness. Maybe it's the memory of a high school sleepover with five of your closest girlfriends, giggling until dawn about which member of the football team has the best derriere.

Maybe it makes you think of the soft blush on the cheeks of a newborn baby when she smiles for the very first time, or the first radiant blooms of spring, prodding you with their fragrant resilience to grow and flourish in your own right. Or perhaps it simply brings to mind the perfect embodiment of all that it means to be completely and unabashedly female.

There are any number of possibilities. But to us, it means all those things and more. In our eyes, pink isn’t just another slot on the color-wheel, it’s a state of mind. As self-proclaimed Pink Ladies, we have joined here on a mission. Ours is a pilgrimage of the heart, with fondest aspirations to make you, the readers, fall deeply, irrationally, irrevocably in love.

We have a lot of exciting topics to explore on our blog, and a few giveaways in the works as well – including a Valentine’s Day gift basket to celebrate our favorite day of the year! Visit often and feel free to comment, we love to hear from our readers.

Here’s to 2009, a brilliant new year bursting at the seams with endless possibilities!

And now, a special note from the ladies themselves:

Tracy Preston
Author of Destiny's Captive
Information and Excerpts:

Whenever someone asks me what my dreams and aspirations are as a writer, I have to laugh at the images that spring to mind. I’ve related this in interviews before, but I'll mention it again because it's always the first thing I think of. If you’ve ever seen the Meryl Streep comedy, She-Devil, you will remember Mary Fisher and her pink palace by the sea. (Who wouldn't want a seaside mansion with their own personal Garcia?!)

As a creator of sometimes outlandish fiction, I’d be lying if I said deep down in my heart of hearts I don’t dream big. Of course I do -- what kind of writer would I be if I didn't? Dreams are, after all, a little piece of our hearts drifting to the surface to give us hope for a brighter tomorrow.

If someday I break out by penning a great story at just the right time (you go Stephenie Meyer!), you won’t hear me complaining. But for now, I’ll settle for my three-bedroom, leaky bathroom sink, never enough storage space despite the basement, piece of suburban apple pie. If along my journey I should manage to make someone smile on an otherwise ho-hum day, or a few hearts flutter with avid anticipation of just when in the heck that stubborn heroine is going to give in and admit she loves her hero, I can say I’ve done my job. That’s the most an author can hope for, really…that we have an opportunity to tell our stories, and tell them well.

While we’re on the subject of stories, at the moment I find myself elbow deep in the sequel to Destiny’s Captive, the second installment in the historical Destiny Series, this one about Lucian’s charming younger brother, Robert. I am also well on my way toward finishing a contemporary vampire story that could be the beginning of a beautiful series. I am having a blast developing the characters for Tempted by Moonlight, as vampires do have a certain visceral appeal.

In the meantime, thanks so much for joining us as we endeavor to become the very pinkest we can be. Do stop by and visit often, we just might have a contest or two on the horizon!

Happy New Year!

Sloan Seymour
Author of That Montana Summer
Information and Excerpts:

Hey all! Sloan Seymour here. So happy you stopped by to visit our blog. The three ladies I share this blog with are exceptionally savvy writers, so stay tuned to see what's happening.....!

As for me, I've been writing for six years now. My first book was released in 2008, and it's been very exciting going through the process of publication. The most rewarding part is hearing feedback from readers. It's a great day when someone says they love your book. And even better, when they order you to get your butt back in the chair so they can read the next one.

That said, I am at work on several projects right now - one being a romantic thriller that's truly a pain to plot but is fun to write for the characters and storyline are quite compelling. When I'm not wrapping my brain around plot lines and characters, I work as an RN on an oncology floor. Yes, the talk about a starving writer is true. Food doesn't miraculously appear on the table. :) I enjoy nursing but it is indeed a draining job and losing myself to good-looking heroes and feisty heroines is very much second nature at the end of the day.

Thanks again for reading my bio. Have a great day and stay tuned to our blog!

Sloan Seymour

Katherine L. Logan
Author of The Ruby Brooch
Information and Excerpts:

I'm Katherine Logan, and I'm a writerholic. {Clap, clap, clap} Whew! You can't imagine how difficult that was. I've finally acknowledged my addiction and am on the way to recovery!

It started when I was a teenager, I suppose. My grandmother, Aquilla Jones Lowry, received one of my poems and was so thrilled to have it, that she felt compelled to publish it in a local artsy newsletter. The muse comes from her, you know, and when it chooses to disappear for a while, I blame her for taking it back. I realize, of course, that that's nonsense. But nonetheless, she was the keeper of the family muse until she passed away.

I write time-travel, historical romances. I completed one book and am very close to completing it again. Some think I'm making a career of this one story. I know I'm not, that I just didn't tell it the right way the first time around. After I finish it, sometime before spring, I'll send it off to my editor at The Wild Rose Press and move on to the next adventure in the Gemstone Trilogy, leaving behind the Oregon Trail for the last year of the Civil War. When the war's over we'll head over to San Francisco and discover what life and love were like in the late 1800's.

When I'm not feeding my addiction, I work so I can spoil my grandchildren. I spent twenty years as a paralegal and law firm office manager until I walked away to see what the rest of the world had to offer. I worked for former Governor John Y. Brown, Kentucky Educational Television, Second Presbyterian Church of Lexington, a telecommunications company, and now I'm working for a one hundred year old global mining machinery company learning that coal is not a dirty-four-letter word.

Like my fellow Pink Ladies, I am delighted that you have stopped by to visit and hope you'll return often.


Teresa Reasor
Author of Captive Hearts
and Highland Moonlight
Information and Excerpts:

I’m Teresa Reasor. I’m an artist, teacher and writer. I’ve been drawing since I could hold a pencil, writing a long as I could read, and teaching for eighteen years.

My first love is writing. I can lose myself in another time and place, and experience fantastic adventures vicariously through my characters. And if I fall in love with my hero along the way-- I get to experience the first bloom of romance without really being unfaithful to my hubby of thirty-four years.

Now that my three children are busy building lives of their own, I can now concentrate on weaving plots and crafting bad guys, and the strong characters who oppose them. I write alpha heroes (most of them warriors), feisty, stubborn heroines, and conflict, conflict, conflict.

And I’m a sucker for a happy ending. I feel cheated without one.

Currently I’m working on a contemporary military romantic suspense (for those of you who love Navy SEALs) and a paranormal romance set in Scotland that's possibly the hardest and best thing I've ever written (Or I believe so). I hope both will be contracted someday soon.

Thanks for blogging with us!
Teresa Reasor
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