Heather Hiestand/Anh Leod New Release Info!

Welcome, HEALTHER HIESTAND/ANH LEOD! We’re so happy you’re here today, and congratulations on your new release Christmas A Go-Go!

The Publishing Journey that lead to Christmas a Go-Go

Thank you Liz for hosting me today!

Back when I was a wanna-be commercial fiction author I found my biggest inspiration when I travelled. I suspect I always wanted to write historical romance, but was scared of getting the facts wrong, so I found my love of writing what I didn’t know in setting stories in unusual-to-me places.

In fact, that kind of worked for me, because my first published short story (a mystery story in the print anthology Murder Across the Map) was set in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Then I went one to both exotic-to-me and semi-historical. My second published story was set in an alternative reality Victorian London, and The Wild Rose Press will be publishing a second story of mine set in that reality in 2011, but that’s another blog!

Since my first print sales, I moved into the electronic press world, and as Heather Hiestand or Anh Leod, have published stories set in Victorian London, Regency Portsmouth, outer space on a few occasions, Los Angeles, the Seattle suburbs, south Washington State, Detroit, Las Vegas, and now, Chicago. Ironically, I’m originally from the Chicago area.

So there you go, from Mexico to the place I once claimed home. I’d like to say that means I’m a more confident writer now, but my work-in-progress is back to Victorian London!

Christmas a Go-Go by Anh Leod (part of the Merry Kinkmas story collection) will be out December 21st at Ellora’s Cave.


Lexie has a serious love for go-go boots and an heiress-sized fortune to build her collection. She has everything but a man who shares her fetish. When her new custom-made Christmas go-go boots capture the eye of Adrian, she wonders if she has finally found the one.

Adrian has always been turned on by a woman wearing boots, and he is immediately smitten with the lovely Lexie. Sparks fly and he leads her away to the VIP dressing room for a sultry, sexy tryst.

They both want more, and Lexie plans to have it. She wants Adrian at home, in front of her boot wall—naked, touching her body, touching her boots—while they have the best sex of their lives.

Edited Excerpt (from X to PG)

“May I?”

Lexie frowned. She’d heard a rumbly, sexy male voice, but where was it coming from? Her feet? She looked down to see a head of thick black hair crowning a face of stunning Mediterranean beauty. He was “tall, dark and hunky” personified.

Of course, his charcoal grey suit and multicolored green tie were impeccable too. This man was prime.

His hands hovered over her latest pride and joy—a limited edition white go-go boot with perky green tassels. He had large hands with long, thick fingers, which were lightly dusted with black hair. She could imagine those fingers caressing her with the same delicacy he offered her treasured boot.

Her mouth dried. Hadn’t she dreamed something like this on the plane when she returned from her buying trip? OMG.


Visit my blog to see details of my holiday contest, or feel free to enter here. All you need to do is tell me which of my stories you would like to read. Additionally, tell me which of my guest bloggers’ stories you would like to win – like Liz’s for instance!

Blog:  http://blog.heatherhiestand.com

Website:  http://www.anhleod.com

Buy link at Ellora’s Cave:  http://www.jasminejade.com/m-430-anh-leod.aspx

Published in: on December 20, 2010 at 12:01 pm  Leave a Comment  

New York Times Article On Romance Ebooks

The New York Times says romance novels are the fastest selling genre of ebooks to date and several retailers and publishers are scrambling to get in on the future of publishing…which is here now.

Read the Dec. 8 article here:


The foundations of the article are exciting. Increased sales for romance authors and ebook readers but the percentages for standard publishers and retailers seem a bit low, even conservative. That’s okay because it leaves room for growth and improvement. And just like what normally happens in a romance novel, a happy-ever-after, the publishing industry and book retailers will finally embrace romance novels as their bread and butter business (no ‘bun’ intended.)

While I don’t agree with the imagery NYT writer Julie Bosman uses to describe romance readers:

“If the e-reader is the digital equivalent of the brown-paper wrapper, the romance reader is a little like the Asian carp: insatiable and unstoppable.”

An Asian carp is an ugly fish.

I do agree with the notion that romance readers are the most loyal and lovable fiction aficionados out there. They are intelligent and savvy, too. They buy what they like and they are honest while being understanding of authors for the most part. Is that true of other genre fans?

This article is a time-worthy read. Check it out then come back here and leave your thoughts. But for a couple of sentiments, “bodice-ripping” being one of them (I really dislike that stereotype,)

“Romance is a natural leader here. The genre took off in the 1980s, when it expanded from the typical dreamy or bodice-ripping historical novels to include contemporary, plot-driven stories with characters drawn from real life.”

the article is valuable reference to the power and prestige our genre is continuing to demonstrate in the world of publishing.

Keep reading and buying what you like!



Published in: on December 14, 2010 at 12:22 pm  Comments (11)  

Seventeen contracts in two years for CATE MASTERS. WOW!


Welcome, Cate, and tell us a little about yourself.

Thanks so much for having me today, Liz!

Here’s a brief bio:

Cate Masters has made beautiful central Pennsylvania her home for the past 20 years, but she’ll always be a Jersey girl at heart. A lover of all great writing, she aspires to entertain and enthrall with her own stories. Most days, she can be found in her lair, concocting a magical brew of contemporary, historical, fantasy/paranormal stories with her cat Chairman Maiow and dog Lily as company. Look for her at http://www.catemasters.com, http://catemasters.blogspot.com, and in strange nooks and far-flung corners of the web.

Tell everyone about your journey to publishing a novel.

I set off on a dark and stormy night… no, seriously, it’s been a long journey. For many years, I wrote for myself. At first I concentrated on short stories to hone my storytelling skills, and some of those were published in literary and web zines. A few years ago, a critique partner introduced me to epresses. Because I had a backlog of stories, I went on a submission blitz and met with more success than I could handle, I think – 17 acceptances in two years. Marketing efforts were a little crazy, to say the least. Things have slowed down a bit now, thankfully.

Seventeen acceptance in two years? Gloriosky!

What do you like the most and the least about writing?

When an idea sparks in my brain and comes together on the page, it’s a high for me. I love getting in the flow, and time just slips away.

A negative review used to shake my writing foundation, but I’ve learned to shrug those off.

 What are three things you cannot do without?

Hot black tea, my hubby and time. Not necessarily in that order, lol.

Do you take sugar? With your tea, that is:)

Give us a peek into your latest published work?

Surfacing was so much fun to write. When another writer mentioned she hadn’t seen a mermaid story in a while, I began researching them, and grew fascinated. When I found the Weeki Wachee Mermaid show in Florida, I thought it the perfect place for a real mermaid to surface.  AJ’s one of my favorite kinds of heroes – flawed, but he finds himself when he finds love with a mermaid.

I entered the story into the 2009 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest, and was thrilled it actually made it past the first round.

Here’s the story blurb:

AJ Dillon is trouble. The former lead singer of an indie band has no home, no money and no future. His grandfather is the only relative willing to take another chance on him. AJ arrives in Weeki Wachee, Florida, with his guitar, a few clothes and a bad attitude. The only good thing about Weeki Wachee is the ocean — the one place AJ feels at home.

 Grandpa lines up a job for AJ at Weeki Wachee Springs, where beautiful women perform as mermaids. Grandpa says real mermaids exist, but AJ doesn’t believe – until he meets Cassiopeia. She helps his passion for music resurfaces. But greedy Chaz finds out about her, and threatens to kill them if AJ doesn’t go along with his plan to make a fortune with a real mermaid show. Can AJ save Cassie, even if it means losing her?

You can read an excerpt, reviews and view the trailer at http://www.catemasters.com/surfacing.html

Surfacing is available in ebook and print from Whiskey Creek Press http://www.whiskeycreekpress.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=824

 Sounds adorable!

What’s next on the writing horizon for you?

I’m excited about the contemporary novel coming in June 2011 from Lyrical Press, and a mainstream novel from Whiskey Creek Press. Two shorter fantasies are subbed to pubs, and lots of WIPs vying for my attention, so I hope to have more following soon.

 Is there anything you want to tell readers?

I love to hear from you! Email me at cate.masters AT gmail.com with any comments.

Thanks again for having me as a guest, Liz!

Cate, you’re welcome back any time…if you have the time between all those exciting projects! Congratulations, and keep us posted.


Published in: on December 13, 2010 at 1:00 am  Comments (5)  

Blog Tour In Full Swing!

I’m the guest today at two blogs. Come visit and comment!

Long and Short Reviews


Cate Masters



Published in: on December 8, 2010 at 12:01 pm  Leave a Comment  

Welcome, CORRINA LAWSON, multi-genre author!

 Welcome, CORRINA, and tell us a little about yourself.

Thanks so much for hosting me, Liz!
Well, the first thing people tend to know about me is that I’m a certified geek. I grew up reading science fiction and comic books and all kinds of history novels. English history was something of particular interest and I have the entire lineage of the Kings of England memorized to this day, starting with William the Conquerer and ending with Queen Elizabeth II. 
This may explain why my first published book features a science concept (alternate history) and is set in an ancient time period in which the Roman Empire survived to colonize North America. 
I used to be a reporter, then managed a Barnes & Noble bookstore, and now I’m a stay-at-home mother of four, including twins. Sometimes I wish I worked outside the home but being home has allowed me to set my own schedule and get some writing done. 
I even found a use for my geeky interests. I am a core contributor to the GeekDad blog on Wired.com (www.wired.com/geekdad) and an editor at the newly launched GeekMom website–www.geekmom.com
So, I  now get paid for being a geek and a parent. 🙂 Life is good.

Tell everyone about your journey to publishing a novel.

Well, my journey to Dinah of Seneca being published started with my being pissed off. 
I had finaled  in RWA’s Golden Heart contest with a mystery/romance novel and expected, of course, to find an agent and an editor post-haste. This didn’t happen. Apparently, my need to mix genres was a tough sell. And I must also confess that while my work was good, at this point it wasn’t *great.*
At the time, though, I got angry that people didn’t see my obvious genius. 🙂 
So I gave up submitting for a while and just wrote something for me, a book that would make me happy, no matter how unmarketable people thought it might be. 
Which is how I happened to write an alternate history romance with Romans and Vikings in North America, and with a heroine who was a former Roman slave trained as a spy. 
I had a great time writing the story. It was epic, it had swordfights, and romance, and a big climatic battle and explosions. And sex. Some unusual sex. 🙂 
Unfortunately for me, publishers did not fall at my feet offering a contract. Wrong time period, wrong setting, heroine was a tough sell…etc. In other words, very unmarketable. 
Then I happened to run into an editor for The Wild Rose Press at a RWA regional conference, I pitched her my book, not really expecting anything at this point, and got a full request. 
I received her rejection on a day I was in the middle of a severe ear infection. The historical editor was passing on the manuscript but asked if she could pass it along to the fantasy editor. Through pain and bleary eyes, I answered, ‘sure.’ I really didn’t expect anything to come of it at that point.
And then I heard from my editor, Sarah Hansen, within a month, she asked for revisions, I did them, and…presto! I was published. 
It still seems a bit surreal that I sold my most unmarketable book first. 🙂 

What do like the most and the least about writing?

I love writing. It’s where I go to escape. It’s the best job ever. You make up stuff for a living. So I tend to love the whole process, with one exception. 
That’s when I have a vision in my head of a scene and I can’t find the words to do justice to the picture. That’s frustrating. During those times, I just do the best I can and keep going back until I’m at least somewhat satisfied. 
It does make me feel very inadequate, however.

What are three things you cannot do without?

My husband.
My kids. 
My Macbook Pro. 

Give us a peek into your latest published work?

I have two published works now. There’s Dinah of Seneca, which is out and available now from The Wild Rose Press and up on Amazon in print and Kindle too. There’s also a short prequel of sorts to Dinah, Freya’s Gift, which is with Samhain Publishing. It features the hero of Dinah’s story but it was too erotic for Wild Rose’s standards. (It’s a fertility ritual featuring multiple partners.) 
There are excerpts of both stories here: www.corrinalawson.wordpress.com
Here are two of my favorite lines from the stories: 
Freya’s Gift: “A chief’s wife does not beg.” 
Dinah of Seneca: “Her bad fortune to be captured by a perceptive Viking.” 

What’s next on the writing horizon for you?

Right now, I’m working on a steampunk detective romance for The Wild Rose Press. I wasn’t planning on writing steampunk and then I realized this was my chance to write a Sherlock Holmes mystery. My Holmes analogue is Gregor Sherringford and he’s asked to solve a mystery by one Joan Kriegerson, who eventually becomes my version of Watson. 
I have a few unpublished manuscripts that I’m still trying to place. One is a superhero romance, the other is an urban fantasy romance that comes from my love of ghost stories, and there’s this mystery/romance series that I’ve been fiddling with forever. One of these days…

Is there anything you want to tell readers?

Other than run out and buy my books? 🙂 
Mostly, I’m just really, really grateful for readers. If I had to say anything to readers, I would just plead with them to stop worrying about genre labels and titles and simply start looking for a good story. 
You can find me on Twitter as CorrinaLawson, I’m also under Facebook in that name, and my website again is www.corrinalawson.wordpress.com 
If anyone has any follow-up questions, you can reach me via email at trishacon@yahoo.com 
Thanks for hosting me, Liz! 
It was a pleasure, CORRINA. Come back soon!
Published in: on December 6, 2010 at 1:00 am  Comments (4)