Essential Beginnings Kennedy Layne
Q&A

Character Interview: Jude Soren of FINDING MR. WRONG

Finding Mr. Wrong A.M. Madden Joanne Schwehm

Like a man who’s funny, charming, and a little irreverent? You found him. Don’t miss this interview with the leading man of A.M. Madden and Joanne Schwehm’s Finding Mr. Wrong!


Interviewers: Chip & Barbi from Flame Relationship Services

 

Chip:  We know you’re getting ready to head off to paradise, but we had a few questions for you.

Jude: Okay, shoot.

 

Barbi: You’re a good looking guy…

Jude: Thank you.

Barbi: Why would someone like you need to sign-up for our social experiment?

Jude: My friends think I need to be challenged.

 

Chip: How excited were you to be selected?

Jude: I couldn’t be more thrilled if I was running through the streets of Manhattan naked.

Barbi: Oh, is that something you do?

Jude: No.

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Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: Tamara Gill’s ONLY A DUKE WILL DO

Only A Duke Will Do Tamara Gill

We’re back from a holiday weekend and there are only two things keeping us alive right now: Spite and this amazing excerpt from Tamara Gill‘s Only A Duke Will Do!


“I’m sorry you feel that way, but you cannot stop Isolde from marrying. She will marry one day. It may not be me, but it will be someone. And if the reports around London are correct, she is looking for a husband.”

“Damn you to hell.” Merrick left Wardoor, grabbed a half-filled bottle of whisky from the pavilion, and started toward the Italian Walk. He found a secluded grassy spot within the trees. The sweet-smelling scent floating on the breeze did little to lesson his ire.

Merrick clung to the tree branch above his head and fought not to snap it off, imagining it as Wardoor’s neck. He flung back a good portion of the whisky and welcomed the burn to his throat. How could his closest friend do this to him?

The thought of Isolde welcoming his attentions was like a physical blow.

Damn them. Damn him.

“Moore!”

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Sisters in Love Melissa Foster
Guest Post

Guest Post: “Wonderful World of Words” by Heather McCollum

Thee Beast of Aros Castle Heather McCollum

Thanks for having me on EverAfter Romance to celebrate the release of the first book in my new Highland Isles series, The Beast of Aros Castle! I’m Heather McCollum, and I am a Word Nerd. I love words, history, and writing romance. I often lose myself in etymology: the study of the origin of words.

As a writer, there are millions of words from which to choose. Yet the wrong word, or the right word said by the wrong person, can completely throw a reader out of the world I’ve created. Nooo! Therefore, I must choose wisely when writing.

The word “wow” was first used in the 1510’s. It was a Scottish exclamation to show astonishment and has apparently stood the test of time. In my Scottish romance, set in the year 1522 when King Henry VIII was still on his first wife, it would be historically accurate for my Highlander to say “wow, lass, ye look lovely, spread naked across my bed.” But how many of you would stop and wonder whether he would really say “wow”? That word could completely throw you out of the scene (and this could be a scene you really don’t want to miss!).

Then there are the cuss words. In the late 16th century, the F-word was not considered a swear word, but a word to describe, in a straightforward way, sexual intercourse. It first showed up in a manuscript written in the early 1500’s by a monk writing about his moral-lacking abbot. The word became increasingly thought of as crass and was considered taboo by the late 18th century. The word “swive” was defined the same way as the F-word in the 16th century, and considered just as crass.

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Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Q&A

Q&A: Merrie Destefano of LOST GIRLS

Lost Girls Merrie Destefano

Guys, we’re not sure what to do with ourselves! This Q&A with Merrie Destefano has left us absolutely charmed! Treat yourself before you run off for President’s Day weekend.


FIVE MOVIES

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

While You Were Sleeping, The Time Machine, Romancing The Stone, The Last of the Mohicans, Pride and Prejudice

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

While You Were Sleeping: The scene where Bill Pullman demonstrates what leaning is to Sandra Bullock. So adorable!

The Time Machine: When Samantha Mumba takes Guy Pearce to read the Stone Language. During their conversation, he gives her a vulnerable, heart-broken look and she instantly knows that he has lost a woman he loved. My heart melts every time I watch that scene.

Romancing The Stone: When Kathleen Turner finally comes out of her shy shell and starts cutting the way through the jungle, ultimately leading Michael Douglas and herself to safety. A beautiful analogy of a how a writer comes to life while digging into the complicated plot of her story.

The Last of the Mohicans: When Daniel Day-Lewis takes Madeleine Stowe by the hand and leads her through the fort. All around them a war is exploding. Inside them is another kind of explosion—that of falling in love. Sigh.

Pride and Prejudice: The dance scene. The look on Colin Firth’s face. The music. The realization that he does care about her, but has put his foot in his mouth and she isn’t going to forget it. I could watch that dance scene ALL DAY LONG.

You’ve Got Mail: The end, where Meg Ryan goes to meet her secret email pal, hoping it’s Tom Hanks. And then Tom comes walking over the bridge. It’s a heart-warming conclusion to what began as a bitter work-related feud.

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Q&A

Q&A: Nicola Davidson of THE DEVIL’S SUBMISSION

The Devil's Submission by Nicola Davidson

Hard day? We’ve got exactly what you need, because Nicola Davidson is back! Don’t miss our Q&A, or The Devil’s Submission, out now!


 

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

I’d have to say Love Actually, Emma, The Notebook, Braveheart, and Pride and Prejudice.

 

Love Actually: I adored all the characters in this movie, but especially liked Jamie (Colin Firth) and Aurelia (Lucia Moniz.) So many sweet, funny scenes as they attempted to communicate, getting it wrong but still unable to deny the growing attraction to each other. My favorite scene is when he leaves the awkward family Christmas and instead flies back to her, making his declaration in the restaurant in broken Portuguese. SO romantic! And then it turns out she took English lessons ‘Just in cases’. Swoon. Love conquers all – even the language barrier.

 

Emma: Ohhhh, Mr. Knightley (Jeremy Northam.) Both stuffy and sweet, a real gentleman’s gentleman Regency hero. It is equal parts annoying and sniffle-worthy as he drops subtle, awkward hints about his feelings for Emma that she keeps missing. But then comes the last scene in the movie with one of the truly great romantic lines: ‘Marry me, my wonderful, darling friend.’

 

The Notebook: What a perfectly cast movie. Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie (Rachel McAdams) were just brilliant together as the working class man and his society princess trying to break free. Although there are SO many fabulous scenes, a random one sticks out for me. Again, near the end, when Allie has to choose between her fiancé Lon and Noah. She pulls up outside Noah’s house in her car, hops out with her suitcases, and gives him the big shrug. Not a word is said but it captures one of the key essences of love – the heart wants what it wants, even if on paper it seems like absolutely the wrong choice.

 

Braveheart: Before the patriotism and raging bloody battles, there was an incredibly sweet romance between William Wallace (Mel Gibson) and Murron MacClannough (Catherine McCormack) childhood friends reunited as adults. Their courtship is just delicious, tender yet full of wonderful crisp banter that says their minds are in accord as much as their hearts. The scene when they sit together on the rock and he offers to teach her to read is gorgeous enough, but when they arrive back at her home and he presents her with the thistle she gave him as a child at his father and brother’s funeral…oh my.

 

Pride and Prejudice: I love the dynamics between Lizzie Bennett (Keira Knightley) and Mr. Darcy (Mathew McFadyen). She is so smart and witty and outspoken. He is stuffy and rigid and honorable. They shouldn’t work as a couple, but they do—and it’s because both learn to look below the surface, and trust their hearts when circumstances around them make them doubt what they feel. The scene at the end where he strides toward her in the dewy grass, now slightly unbuttoned and purposeful, and she knows he has done her and her family the greatest of favors and is open to seeing the kind heart beneath his crisp exterior…SWOON.

I’d say I thought about all these movies a bit while writing The Devil’s Submission. Devil is kind of a raunchy hybrid Knightley/Darcy, in that he is rigid and reserved, a bookish man whose submissive need for pain with his pleasure weighs heavily on his heart. He is in desperate need of a strong, sassy lady to lure him out of his shell and show him the way to happiness. Eliza, his estranged wife has one heck of a battle on her hands. Luckily she is more than bold and brave enough for the task. I also love the fact that when their walls come down, they can really talk. I like my scorching hot lust with a large side of friendship, I think that is what ices the happily ever after cake. The knowledge that they like as well as want each other, which is a pretty strong foundation for lasting love.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: The Dream Cast of HARD WIRED

Hard Wired Megan Erickson Santino Hassell

Thanks for having us here at Ever After! We hope you enjoy this dream cast from the Cyberlove series. We focused on the main characters, some supporting characters who may get their own story one day, and Kai and Garrett from Strong Signal who have several cameos!

This series has been really visual for us because so much of it takes place online with people who have to share pictures or Skype because they don’t see each other in person. Also, Strong Signal and Hard Wired are very rooted in the idea of fandom culture. To celebrate that, we created Tumblr pages for both Kai and Ian (and his alter ego Cerise), but here are inspiration pictures of the entire cast!


 

The stars of Hard Wired:

Ian played by Miles McMillan

Miles McMillan

 

Jesse played by Alex Pettyfer

Alex Pettyfer

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Five Romantic Dates to Go On in The Mystik World” by Brenda Drake

Going on dates is the fun part of a budding relationship. But going on dates in the Library Jumpers’ Mystik world holds so much wonder and beauty, I thought it would be fun to give Arik some ideas on where to take Gia on their first date.

The Spanish haven of Santara with its lush, green grounds and beautiful flowers and sweet fruits is my first pick for Arik and Gia’s date. The castle was built into the side of a mountain. Arik and Gia could hike the long, winding trail that leads to the top of the mountain. At the crest, they could view all of Santara while enjoy a picnic of empanadas filled with meats and fruits. Afterward, they could fly down the mountain

Mantello Haven in Italy is where Gia’s great-grandfather is from. The castle is stately and the village is quaint with winding roads and many shops. There are festivals, wine making, and a unique bookstore. Arik and Gia could have fun eating bake goods while strolling through the many shops. They could sit at one of the outdoor cafes to eat and watch the many plays and puppet shows performed on the street.

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Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: TANGLED IN TEXAS by Kari Lynn Dell

Tangled in Texas Kari Lynn Dell

As a city girl, I’m always surprised when a Western Romance pulls me in. Maybe it’s the visual of a generous smirk and the adventure of the wild that calls, but it works every time. Kari Lynn Dell’s Tangled in Texas has it all, and we’re happy to bring you this sneak peek!


She brushed her fingertips over the gouges his spurs had made on the front of his rigging. Then she tapped the shoulder of the spur board. “Put your feet here and your hand in the rigging.”

He did.

She grabbed his left ankle and wrapped her other hand around the inside of his left knee. “Try to go limp and let me move you.”

Any time, darlin’. But she was so focused, she missed his smirk. She played his leg like a puppet’s—bending, straightening, rotating out at the hip, bending again, testing angle after angle until she found one she liked. He tried to stay loose, but her hand kept sliding up and down the inside of his thigh, every stroke heating his blood until limp was no longer a part of his vocabulary. The air got sideways in his lungs as she moved her hand even higher. Think cold. Ice cubes. North Dakota in January. He sucked in a breath through clenched teeth as her hand moved again. A couple more inches and she’d find out for herself just how not limp he was.

She gave his leg a shake. “Relax!”

“Tori.”

She paused, looked up at his face, then followed his gaze to where her little finger was a hair shy of rubbing up against his balls.

“Oh.” She didn’t snatch her hand away, just moved it down to midthigh. “Sorry. But look.”

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Earning That Happily Ever After” by Lisa Kessler

Wolf Moon Lisa Kessler

Thanks for having me back on the EverAfter Romance blog! If we’ve never met, I write dark paranormal romance, and my devoted readers will tell you, I like my characters to earn their Happily Ever After.

What does that mean? One of my favorite parts of a romance is that big black moment. We’ve been building up to it the whole book. Will they or won’t they? Whatever they fear most, we’re going to face it. I yearn to see them grow into the people I know they can be. This is usually the moment in a book that can bring tears to your eyes.

My poor husband has found me sobbing in the kitchen more than once as I face having to write that scene. By the time I get there, I love my characters, and I don’t want to hurt them, but for me, it’s that huge moment when love really does cause a transformation. That’s when the happily ever after is only as delicious as that dark time is painful.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “The World’s Gone Crazy and Here are the Tropes I Want to See in 2017” by Patricia Eimer

His Fake Alien Fiancee Patricia Eimer

No matter what side of the aisle you sit on politically – and I really really don’t care FYI—I think we can all agree that 2016 was a bloody dumpster fire of a year. David Bowie set the tone by dying and leaving us with the album Dark Star (that he recorded knowing it was his final love letter to the world) at the beginning of the year; Carrie Fisher died and left us with a final image of her in Rogue One at the end of the year; and in between, a whole raft of talented people left the world a darker place with their passing. The election seemed like it was never going to end. The weather was crazy. People were shot in churches and nightclubs and medical facilities and schools. A politician was stabbed on the street in England. A child was killed by an alligator at Disney World. The papers were filled with pictures of Syria. Freaky clowns kept appearing in playgrounds because we aren’t all scarred enough by clowns already. 2016 was literally a highlight reel of tragedy porn.

But I’m lucky, because I had people that I could go to who looked at the dumpster fire that was 2016 and could make me laugh about it. My girlfriends and I have a tradition, we always try to get together in January. Some years we all fly to the same place and spend a long weekend together. Sometimes we do a large conference call kvetch. This year we were all feeling pretty battered and bruised so we actually decided that it was worth it to spend the money and get together in person—away from our families. And every one of us made the comment that we didn’t go out New Year’s Eve. Partly because we’ve gotten old enough that being drunk young people puking on our feet just isn’t fun anymore, but the other part was that we were all essentially hunkered down, waiting for the dumpster fire that was 2016 to finally end. We didn’t want to risk setting foot outside until it was over.

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