Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Holidays and deadlines


Somewhere, there is a writer burning stuffing but keeping a plot tight. Well, I'm not burning stuffing but I am trying to keep this plot tight. When you're a writer, holidays only mean time to writer. With my hated day job and this bootleg holiday schedule, I'm in danger of writing at the Thanksgiving table on Thursday, but not during the Cowboys game. Hey, I got priorities. But I digress.

Writing during the holidays will cause different reactions from family members. There's Uncle Joe and his,"girl,when are you going to write about me?"
Normally, Uncle Joe is way past his prime and his stories about how he met your auntie -- creepy! While you want to tell Uncle Joe to have several seats, he'll drop a nugget that more than likely will end up in your next book. This is why you always bring rum for Uncle Joe.

Now, Aunt Hattie Mae, she doesn't want any part of the book. As a matter of fact, after every sentence she says, "Don't put that in your book." Even if she simply said, "It's raining outside."
But Aunt Hattie Mae needs to know, she has been in several books already. It's funny that when you write about real people, that don't know it. That's the good thing about being a writer, you can write about folks as you see them. 

Then, you have your parents, or ya mama to be more accurate, who's hollering, get off that iPad, lap top or computer and go to the store. 
Dang, I think my mama is calling me. I forgot to get the turkey! 

Happy Thanksgiving!


And if you're in need of a holiday read, check out my latest, Love After War!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Is that how you do it?

So in case you haven't check out either Yvette Hines or my Facebook pages recently, you may have seen that we just hosted an in-person author event to announce the launch of our latest contemporary interracial BDSM erotic romance releases, Red Hots by Yvette Hines and my Licorice Whips.

Wow! It's all I can say. For one, what a massive undertaking to arrange to get a conference room, discounted hotel rooms, speakers if you're not the only one doing the presentation, and prizes. On top of all that, Yvette Hines and I had to write, edit, and get published our full-length novels. It was a lot to do in a few months. I know what you all are thinking. "Bridget, didn't you do the same thing for the Hot M.A.M.A. event?" There were a lot of differences between the two events. For one, Kianna Alexander did most of the legwork for the Fly Hat luncheon. She found the hotel and set up the conference room. She also ordered the bags and bookmarks. She was the go-to woman. Plus for this event, we didn't have to have a full-length novel written and published.

It was a lot of moving parts that we had to make sure all worked together. After some scary moments (I didn't think I would have my print books in time for the event), we got it all to work. Both of us had our print books. The hotel did a great job setting up the room for us. The lunch was nice. And a friend of mine made these cute stiletto cupcakes for the event.

While Yvette and I were writing our books, I had arranged to get people in the BDSM lifestyle to be at the event and talk about how they got into the Lifestyle and why it works for them. They also did some actual playing during the event that I think was eye-opening for a lot of our guests.

We ran contests throughout the day. Both Yvette and I did presentations. Yvette did a phenomenal job on writing while incorporating the five senses. You can tell she did a lot of research on the subject. Who knew that honey was the number one aphrodisiac? I think we all thought it would be oysters or chocolate.

I presented a more controversial subject: writing interracial BDSM erotic romance. Writing BDSM is controversial enough. Throw race into the mix, and it gets a little dicey. I just had to present it in two ways: reality and the romantic. The romantic aspect is to have writers focus on the sensations and the love. The reality of writing about race within BDSM is that there are controversial acts dealing with race within the Lifestyle. For example, have you heard of race play? In BDSM, that's when race is used within a scene. Author K.D. King shared an online blog article about people who recreate the whole slave auctions, complete with a rebel flag hanging behind the stage, an African-American man standing naked for the "buyers" to view, and him being flanked by shirtless, booted white men in cowboy hats. In one picture, the "slave" is bending over and getting his genitals examined by one of the "owners." But that's not the only race play. Jewish people in the Lifestyle will go through a concentration camp scene with someone who looks or acts like Hitler.

I know. Sounds horrific. There's no way I could write something like that and make it romantic. I don't think anyone can. What I had to remind people at our event that all of this was done consensually. Yes, the African-American man at the slave auction wanted to be there. This was his fantasy. The BDSM community has a great credo that they follow: safe, sane, and consensual. A person isn't forced to do any act. And there are safe words, words used to signal how a participant is feeling, that can slow down or stop the action completely.

If anything, I do like that in BDSM: freewill. All parties involved have to be very strong in order to be in it. Yes, that includes the slaves and submissives. You can't be unsure and do the Lifestyle. You'll frustrate yourself and the Dom or Domme playing with you.

So now with that event behind us, I can now exhale. The Hot M.A.M.A.s and I are gearing up for another Fly Hat luncheon. Stay tuned for more information. Just like last year, we hope you all have fun!

Stay sexy,

BridgeT
www.BridgetMidway.com

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Baby, It's Cold Outside- Gotta Stay Warm Somehow!

Hey, y'all!
Even though it's always warm here in Hot MAMA Land, some places aren't so fortunate. As November wears on, and fall becomes crisper as winter creeps up, we're all looking for a way to stay warm. Curling up by the fireplace with cup of hot tea- our favorite fuzzy socks, and a good book. What could be more lovely?

I'll tell you. If the book can raise your body temperature all the more, that's what could be better! Turn down the thermostat, pick up a hot book, and save yourself some money, honey!

In need of a hot book? I humbly submit my Christmas themed erotic romance, Seducing Sheri, for your consideration.


One beta reader commented: "The heat between them was so hot, they were roasting chestnuts just by standing close to each other!" 

Want a little taste? Read the excerpt below:

 As her late model sedan breezed down NC 421, Sheridan Cole let her eyes scan the horizon ahead. She could feel the exhaustion setting in, so she blinked her eyes several times to push away the bleariness, then turned the dial on the console to turn the heat down. The digital thermometer in the dash displayed a chilly 38 degrees, typical for December in North Carolina. She knew if she kept the heat blasting, she'd fall asleep for sure.
It was Saturday evening, and outside the warm cocoon of her car, only a few other vehicles occupied the road. She'd chosen to leave her place just outside of Philly on Friday, planning her trip so she could spend the last leg in a traffic lull. She'd traveled I-95 south, then caught I-85 going west to get her to this point. After what she'd dealt with while driving in the city, and on the interstate highways today, she needed this break from bumper to bumper gridlock.
On the right side of the road, she glanced at the green and white road signs directing her journey. She didn't make this trip very often, and she didn't want to miss her exit. She'd only come home one previous Christmas, and that had been just after college, three years ago.
Her mother, Clara, was constantly asking her why she didn't come home more often. She'd been honest with her mother- Evelyn Yancey, her boss at the CPA firm, worked them extra hard around Christmas to prepare for the coming tax season. Most years, she was simply too exhausted to make the trip. Her mother hadn't seemed satisfied with the answer, but it was the truth. Mercifully, this year, her boss had taken a rare vacation, freeing everyone in the office to actually celebrate the holidays instead of slaving away at their desks.
This was one hell of a long drive. She ran a hand over her eyes, and reached for her now tepid coffee. Taking a sip, she continued to look for the sign that would direct her back to her tiny hometown.
Finally, the sign she was looking for came into view. NC 62- Climax Creek. Pressing down on the turn signal lever, she moved into the right lane, and took the appropriate exit.
The setting sun dipped low behind the clouds in the overcast sky as she drove through the town center. Through her tired, droopy eyes, she could see that not much had changed since she'd last visited. Most of the businesses were closed, but all of them were decked out in holiday finery. Fresh spruce wreaths, finished with red velvet ribbons, hung on the doors of every shop and store. The town's lit wreaths hung from every light post.
Climax Creek had two gas stations, a BP and a Kangaroo. There was a small Guilford County library branch, along with a couple of fast food places and a Walgreen’s. The town hall occupied a small sloping piece of land inside a traffic circle, and off the main road, there were at least four churches of different denominations. As she drove around the traffic circle, she groaned. They'd put the infernal thing in when she was in high school, and she'd always hated it. Aside from that, there wasn't enough traffic in Climax Creek to warrant a circle- the whole town had less than 1600 people. At least the trip around the circle let her get a good look at the town's Christmas tree. It was beautiful this year, with all white lights and ornaments of silver and gold.
She spotted Cool Beans, the local coffee shop that had been on Climax Road since she was knee high to a piano bench. Across the street she could see the florist shop, owned by Minnie Hughes, mother of her best friend and high school classmate, Carlotta.
When she passed Dunn's Grocery, she cringed. She knew the Dunn family well- especially the oldest son, Nick. Every time she passed the place, she thought about the same two things: the rivalry between the Coles and the Dunns, and how drop-dead sexy Nick was. She pushed the thoughts away. Right now, all she wanted was to get home to a warm bed.
Her eyelids dipped again, this time coming dangerously close to shutting completely. Shaking her head vigorously to fend off the sleepiness, she made a quick maneuver, turning left off the main road and into the parking lot of Cool Beans. If she was going to make it home safely, she had to stop in for a pick-me-up. The cold coffee in her travel mug just wasn't going to do.
Slipping the car into an empty spot, she cut the engine and got out. There were only four other cars in the lot, so she knew it would be pretty easy to get in, grab herself a dark roast, and get back on the road before her mom started calling her cell phone. Clara hadn't been crazy about her taking the long drive alone, but it was two days before Christmas. She didn't want to be anywhere near Philadelphia International Airport in the middle of the holiday travel madness.
The air held a biting chill, but the aroma of the coffee wafting from the shop brought a smile to her lips. Nothing could warm the bones like a good strong brew, and Paulina Gray, owner of Cool Beans, could brew with the best of them.
With her purse in hand, and her cell phone tucked into the hip pocket of her jeans, she pushed through the door into the warmth of the coffee shop.
Inhaling the heady aroma of the freshly ground beans and brewing coffee, she stepped forward toward the counter.
A man stood there, his back to her, fiddling with his cell phone. She assumed he was waiting on his drink, so she hung back a bit to let him have his personal space.
Paulina flitted over with a steaming cup in her hand, the ever-present smile lighting her face. "Here you go, Nick. Have a good evening, darlin'."
Hearing that name, her heart stopped. Surely she didn't mean that Nick. Over her now racing heartbeat, she sent up a silent prayer that another Nick, any Nick, had moved to town since she'd been away, and had endeared himself to Paulina enough for her to call him by a pet name.
The man took the offered cup. "Thanks, Lina."
Her heart dropped straight to the soles of her leather boots. She knew that voice.
He turned around fully, his cup in hand. As soon as he saw her, that sexy smile broke out over his full lips. "Sheri? When did you get back in town?" As he spoke, she watched the way his eyes moved over her body like a caress.
And just like that, her plans for a quick trip home for the holiday flew out the window like a bird escaping a cage.


***

Eying Sheridan Cole, Nick was suddenly very glad he'd stayed later than he intended to grab a hot chocolate. He'd spent the last hour or two sitting in the shop with his younger brother, Dalton. They'd been discussing possible courses of action to take now that Purcell Foods, Incorporated was chomping at the bit to buy out his family's grocery store. He and his brother acted as manager and assistant manager, respectively, and the surprise offer on the store had put quite a damper on their holiday. No one in the entire Dunn family seemed to agree on what to do about the offer. As the eldest child, and designated voice of reason, his stress levels had been high for the last two weeks from to get everyone to a consensus.
But now, looking at this tasty morsel of femininity that fate had seen fit to drop in front of him, he thought his Christmas spirit might be returning in full force. Wearing a pair of skin tight, dark denim jeans and an emerald green sweater beneath a black leather jacket, she looked like the best gift he could ever hope to unwrap. The clothes clung to her in every place they should, showing off the womanly curves she'd acquired. They'd known each other since childhood, but now, she was all woman and looked every bit the part.
She'd come a long way from the math genius in glasses he'd known in high school, and even from the recent college graduate he'd seen on her last visit. He watched her stand there, trembling like a chihuahua in a freezer, and waited for her to answer his question.
"I...uh....just got in. Decided to stop off for something warm on the way home." Her hand went to the straight, dark locks of her hair, hanging over her shoulders, and she twirled a few strands around her fingertips. Watching her do that just made him want to run his hand through the silken tresses.
He smiled, reaching out for her hand with his free one. "Welcome home. It's so good to see you. How long has it been...three, four years?" Her hand was shaky as he captured it in his larger one.
She nodded. "About that long, yeah." As if she realized she was playing in her hair, she stuffed the offending hand into her jacket pocket. Still gazing at him, those chocolate eyes wide, she asked, "How have you been?"
"Good, good." He took a sip from the cup of cocoa, through the tiny hole in the plastic lid. It was scorching hot, but somehow not as hot as Sheri. "Still managing the store. How about you?"
Her gaze flickered, dropped for a moment. "Still working at the firm."
"Well, you look fantastic. Whatever you're doing up in Pennsylvania is obviously working for you." He lifted her hand up to his lips, and kissed it.
"Ah."
The sound that slipped from her mouth may not have been intentional, but it was audible. He heard her sigh, loud and clear. Hearing her utter that throaty, pleasure filled sound made his pants feel about two sizes too small in the crotch. At this point, he had two options. He could either go stand in the corner, cross his legs, and think about last year's ski trip to Aspen, or he could invite her home with him. Right away, he knew which one he preferred, although, it would be quite a feat to drive in his current condition.
Paulina cleared her throat, and they both turned in her direction. "Don't hog Sheridan, Nick. Come on over here and tell me how you've been doing, girl!"
Releasing a long breath, Sheri excused herself and went to the counter to converse with Paulina. He watched her round hips swaying from side to side, then moved to a nearby table and sat down, covering his lap with his trench coat before he embarrassed himself.
He sat there and waited for the two women to finish their conversation, all the while wondering what Sheri would say when he asked her to come home with him. They were well acquainted, so she probably wouldn't slap him in the face, but he knew what he was about to do was still more than a little forward. Back in high school, she completely ignored him, preferring to spend time with her math books over dating. He hoped to God she'd changed her mind, because what was throbbing between his legs told him that if he didn't have her, he'd never get to sleep.
He waited what seemed like hours for her to finish chatting with Paulina and order her drink, while he shifted back and forth on the hard wooden seat. There just wasn't any comfortable way to sit in a chair like that when he was so damn hard. Finally, mercifully, she got her drink and turned back in his direction. "I was on my way home, so I guess I'd better get back on the road."
He stood, careful to close his coat as he did. Rather than announce his intentions now, and risk getting shot down in front of the gossiping Paulina, he offered his arm. "Let me walk you to your car."
She gave him a small smile, linked arms with him, and he pressed the door open with his elbow so they could step out into the cold night air.
Outside, they walked toward her dark blue sedan. He watched her face, and the way she seemed to be avoiding making eye contact. When she made a move to slip her arm out of his, he stayed her.
She looked up at him with those doe eyes. "What is it, Nick?"
He sat his cup on the roof of her car, then took hers and did the same. With both hands free, he cupped her face in his hands. "Sheri, why don't you come to my place?"
The long lashes fluttered. "I...didn't I just say I was on the way home?"
"You did." He dipped his head low, and placed a soft kiss on her lips.
The same sound she'd made earlier, when he'd touched her hand, slipped out again.
She stepped back, pressed a hand over her mouth. "Oh, God. You heard that, didn't you."
He nodded. "Yeah. Both times." He kissed her lips again, loving how soft and yielding they felt beneath his. Unable to stop himself, he kissed her again, and again, giving her little pecks until his mouth, craving more of her, opened to slide his tongue between her lips.
Her arms wrapped around his neck, and that was his cue to pull her flush against his body, his hands resting on her hips. She relaxed into his embrace, and let the kiss deepen.
The chill of the night faded away, until all he could feel was the heat the two of them were generating. His hands moved around to cup her the full cheeks of her ass, and he gave them a firm squeeze. For the third time, she moaned; this time, the sound was muffled by his mouth covering hers.

He released her lips, pulled back for a moment. Looking down, he could see the desire shimmering in her eyes. "Do you want to stand out here in the cold making out, or do you want to continue this at my house? It's warmer, and much more private."


**I hope you enjoyed the excerpt. If you did, you can purchase Seducing Sheri for only .99 at one of the following retailers:**




Until Next Time, 
Kianna

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

I LOVE MY READERS!!!






Gosh! I say that ALL the time, but I really do! Well it’s obvious that an author should love his or her readers. After all, they support your work by spending their time and money on it so…heck yeah, they are deserving of all the love. For an author though, I like to think that the love for ones readers goes beyond that.

MY READERS? They push me so much that it’s unreal. I sometimes talk about how I can release a story and within two days (sometimes less) of that story releasing, I’ve got upwards of 10 or more people asking when the next book is coming out. Seriously? Yes and I love it! Such a demand has been such a motivator for me but it can cause issues. For instance, right now I’m on deadline for my traditional publisher, I have a swarm of readers who have patiently waited for a title much longer than they should have- “Layers” folk, my apologies on how long this book has taken to get to you and then there’s a YA Fantasy title that my agent has expressed interest in and one that I had such an awesome time drafting, but have yet to complete the final version…

Some might say that this all sounds like a tremendous headache, but for an author with a passion (and obsession) for writing, it’s a dream. For an author with a love for his/her readers, all that pushing can, and I think should, be viewed as a motivator. If no one was asking, I’d still be creating my stories. That is, after all, why I started writing in the first place. I couldn’t find the stories I wanted to read on the market, so I decided to write my own. I’ll be doing that long after I stop releasing stories, I suppose, but having a group to share with and glean responses from makes writing all the more enjoyable.

I struggled a lot with what I’d write about for this blog. I’ve been pretty busy and didn’t have time to prepare a post until a few short moments ago after reading a few posts from members of my webgroup. It’s appropriate to say that I owe this post to my readers, but that’s no surprise.

Thanks Guys.
Love,

Al

Friday, November 1, 2013

The Story behind Love After War

The story behind Love After War. . . .



Most of my brilliant ideas start at a corner table in Starbucks. While sipping on a grande Italian Roast, I thought what would happen if the lights went out and I was stuck in here with the last person I wanted to see. Suppose it was an old rival from high school. Would I toss my coffee in her face? Heck no! Cheris Hodges does not waste coffee!

High school rivalries are old hat, I told myself as I took a sip. What if I was trapped in Starbucks with an ex? I took to my iPad and started sketching ideas. The first thing I thought was, let's move this story to Los Angeles. California is known for rolling brown outs and Starbucks. I had to remove myself from this story because I write romance, not revenge killing tomes.

A character from Too Hot For TV popped into my mind, Dana, Imani's photographer best friend. Fitting because one of my best friends is a photographer. And when I found out that Dana didn't have a last name -- I gave her my home girl's surname. Dana was talking to me, telling me that if I wrote about her, she'd better be kick ass and ride a motorcycle. She even has me wanting to get a Fat Bob now. My father does not approve.
The scene with Dana and her ex came together so quickly, that I couldn't wait to see how this love story would play out. I just needed to know what her man's name was.
Adrian. Adrian Bryant.

So, what's his story? Glad you asked. Adrian needed a damned good reason to let a woman like Dana go. On my third-- maybe 23rd -- refill, another idea jolted me into action.
War! War! War. Not the violent kind of war that requires an Army, but something deeper. As the auntie of three big boys, I know one thing for sure: You don't mess with Mom!

Well, somebody messed with Adrian's mom and he's out for revenge. It's war! But can Dana's love change him?

Find out on November 4th in Love After War!