Crossing Genres – A Guest Post

I love this post by Tabitha Conall. It’s about mixing genres, not coloring within the lines. I love when authors do that – and do it well. Check out this post on Crossing Genres!

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Have you been enjoying these posts? Be sure to check my website often, because I’m sure I’ll have more for you soon!

Oh yeah, and if you haven’t yet, you should check out my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami. It’s all about hanging out and getting to know (new) favorite authors. Once a month, we have a featured author Q&A, too. Don’t miss it!

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Why Shapeshifters?

Here’s a question: why shifters? I now have two series centered around shifters – the Twisted Fate Series (Of Love and Darkness was released in June, 2015, and Prim and Proper Fate will be released in 2016, followed by the final book in the series, in 2017) and the Lightbearer Series. Twisted Fate is entirely about shifters, while Lightbearer was supposed to be about magical beings called, well, Lightbearers. Yet when I threw shifters into the mix in that series, it became about them. How did that happen?

Lightbearers-January2016

The answer is simple: shifters are one of my favorite genres to read. So not coincidentally, I also happen to enjoy writing about them. They are sexy, strong, powerful, hot, did I mention sexy? In my reasonably extensive research, I have learned a few things about these seductive alpha beings.

I’ve learned they all have one thing in common. All shape shifters have the ability to change from human form into…something else. And that, as far as I have been able to determine, is the single aspect that defines every shifter in every book I’ve ever read or written. Beyond that, well, every author interprets them a little differently. Which is the way it should be, right? We’re talking magic, and magic is defined by the imagination of the person writing it – and reading it.

Some shifters can only change into the form of one animal. These are typically referred to as were-animals (werewolves, were-bearers, were- you get the picture). Others are able to shift into pretty much any animal, or, as I like to explain in my books, the form of any warm-blooded creature. The shifters in my Lightbearer Series can even shift into the form of birds, if they are so inclined. This comes in handy when one wants to escape rapidly and he’s on the second floor or at the top of a cliff (both situations occur in the first book in this series).

Many shifters’ clothing cannot shift with them. The clothing is either shed before the shift or, if the shift must occur with little notice, the clothing is torn to shreds when the body changes and alters, and the shifter must figure out another means of covering his naughty bits when he returns to human form.

The shifters in my books can shift while wearing clothing, and when they return to human form, their clothing returns to their body exactly as it was before the shift. I admit, I made this decision out of convenience. I considering the no-clothing route because, let’s be honest, that makes more sense, from a non-magical standpoint. But I was having a difficult time writing the whole, “Hold on, I have to strip and hide my clothing for later” aspect into the various scenes and plots and sub-plots of the series. So I decided if magic can make a person change from human to animal, then magic can make that person’s clothes reappear when they return to human form.

Some shifters have the ability to speak to each other telepathically. Some are able to harness other forms of magic, too. Some have glowing eyes. In my Lightbearer series, the shifters’ eyes glow when they are feeling strong emotions. Anger, frustration, sadness, passion. Even if the shifter is trying to act stoic and passive, the object of his desire, if she is smart enough, can figure out pretty easily that he feels something, if his eyes are glowing. It’s practically a declaration of love.

Or lust.

Some shifters eat only red meat. Actually, the desire to eat red meat might possibly qualify as the second thing all shifters have in common, now that I think about it. Or maybe not. A vegetarian shifter could make for an intriguing storyline.

Many shifters have obsessive, jealous personalities. Like a dog, protecting his bone. Or his house. Or his mate. My shifters have this trait. In fact, it plays heavily into the next couple of books in the Lightbearer Series.

I’m sure I’ve missed a few common traits. What other traits do you notice in your favorite books about shifters or weres? Which common traits are your favorite?

Have you been enjoying these posts? Be sure to check my website often, because I’m sure I’ll have more for you soon!

Oh yeah, and if you haven’t yet, you should check out my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami. It’s all about hanging out and getting to know (new) favorite authors. Once a month, we have a featured author Q&A, too. Don’t miss it!

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On Writing Wolves: Best Alpha Females

It’s Shifter Saturday! I’ve given you a bunch of posts from a bunch of authors, all talking shifters. And I have one more for you …

Heather Long is featured in this post, writing about something near and dear to my heart: Strong women. Specifically strong alpha shifter women. There are no simpering maidens in this post!

 

On Writing Wolves: Best Alpha Females

 

Have you been enjoying these posts? Be sure to check my website often, because I’m sure I’ll have more for you soon!

Oh yeah, and if you haven’t yet, you should check out my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami. It’s all about hanging out and getting to know (new) favorite authors. Once a month, we have a featured author Q&A, too. Don’t miss it!

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Why We Love The Alpha

This post features paranormal and contemporary romance author, Kristen Strassel, who wrote about alpha males and why we just can’t get enough, over on her own blog. Take a look:

 

Why We Love The Alpha

 

Oh, and Kristen is the next featured author over in my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami. She’s going to be hanging out, doing a Q&A, on Monday, December 7, at 8pm Eastern. You should stop by.

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Interview With The Author

You should check out the Paranormal Romance Lovers Blog – They did a fantastic (and funny) interview with paranormal author, Elizabeth Varlet. Hey, you might just find your next fave author! (But don’t forget about me… :))

 

Interview with author Elizabeth Varlet

 

Be sure to check back soon. There’s bound to be another post by another author, and probably about shifters.

Oh yeah, and if you like this concept (learning about all sorts of new authors), you should check out my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami. It’s all about hanging out and getting to know (new) favorite authors. Once a month, we have a featured author Q&A, too. Don’t miss it!

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Blogging About Favorite Shifters

I haven’t been blogging regularly lately, at least not here, on my own blog. Mostly that’s because I’m blogging in other places. Once a month (usually on a Friday) you can find me over at the Writing Wenches website. Every two or three months on a Wednesday, you can read my words on the Soul Mates Publishing blog. And every other Wednesday, I’m hanging out at the Love, Lust, and Laptops blog. And in between all that blogging, I’m always in the middle of writing another book. Or several.

So here’s what I’m going to do with this blog. I (virtually) hang out with a bunch of pretty cool authors who write, among other topics, shifters. And as we all know readers of shifter romance are a voracious bunch, I decided I’m going to give you a pretty regular dose of blog posts from fellow shifter authors. Might even happen a few times a week.

For example, today I’d like to direct you to a blog post by a fellow shifter author who also happens to be a Writing Wench. So you know it’s gonna be good.

Take a look at Skye Jones’s post about her favorite shifters. You know you want to.

My Favorite Shifters by Skye Jones 

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And check back soon. There’s bound to be another post by another author, and probably about shifters.

Oh yeah, and if you like this concept (learning about all sorts of new authors), you should check out my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami. It’s all about hanging out and getting to know (new) favorite authors. Once a month, we have a featured author Q&A, too. Don’t miss it!

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Let’s Blog About Sex, Baby

This blog is about sex.

Yep. So if you don’t like sex, well, I don’t even know what to say. Besides that, you’ve obviously stumbled upon this blog by accident, because I write about sex. Every one of my books. They aren’t erotica, but they should put a little heat in your cheeks (and another place further south) as you read, maybe cause you to eye your partner like he/she is a tempting cut of steak.

Witch Antho Promo PicToday, I’m going to talk about writing sex. No, it’s not a tutorial. As much as I like to write and talk about it, I’m not  qualified to be a teacher. My best advice would be to close your eyes and envision it … then write down exactly what you see in your head. Every detail. And if you need to take a minute to, well, take a breather, I also suggest you keep going. Wait until after you’ve finished the scene. Because that scene will be so much hotter if you write it while you are … um … squirming? Uncomfortably warm? Turned on? Yeah, that.

Okay, wait, I didn’t mean to start doling out advice. I want to talk about my own sex scenes, and why I write the ones I do.

True confession: I love the idea of sex in the shower.

I say the idea, because if you’ve ever done it in a normal-sized shower, with normal-sized people (even just two of you), well, you know what the term awkward means. Still, the idea is so, well, hot. And so my characters have sex in the shower. A lot. Probably, every book I’ve ever written has at least one sex scene that involves the shower or bathtub. Hmm … I wonder if that’s really true? I’ve published fourteen books to date. I wonder if every single one really does contain a shower sex scene?

I can’t decide if I’m embarrassed or proud.

I also love the idea of sex standing up. You know what I’m talking about: Six Pack Abs holding your thighs, pressing your back against the wall, while he presses something else against your G spot … Yeah, that’s what I’m talking about.

Sex standing up, usually using a wall for support, is another one of my all time favorites, although it may not actually be in every book I’ve ever written. In the first book in The Resort series, this is how Carter and Allison have sex for the first time. In the troughs of passion, he even whispers, “Do you want to go to the bedroom?” And she replies, “No, I can’t wait any longer. Do me now.” (That was paraphrasing, but you get the gist.)

In Candy Crush, Brandon and Gabriella do it in the laundry room, with her seated on the dryer. Carter and Allison from The Resort do it standing up a lot. Of course, they have sex over the course of five books, so that’s to be expected. Tanner and Olivia from Into the Light do it against the wall of a cliff, next to the beach. Jake and Natalie from Love Gumbo … well, that’s a short, so there are only two sex scenes, and naturally, one of them is in the shower. Maybe that needs to be my signature “thing.” Or maybe I need to get more creative with the steamy moments in my books.

I admit, when I’m writing sex scenes, I tend to take my characters out of the bedroom. I don’t know why. I guess I figure that we all do it in the bedroom. That’s real life. And these books, well, they aren’t, are they? I mean, we all wish they were, but … So when I’m warming up to a new scene, in my head, I’m wondering, where would my readers like to have sex? What will keep them turning pages, panting for more?

Maybe I need to try writing erotica.

Seriously though, it’s the readers I think about, when I’m writing those scenes. Not myself. (“Honey, I have this idea for my next book, wanna try it out with me…?”) Nope. It’s all about that person who will hopefully pick up my book and be so entranced that they cannot put it down again until the end. And then when they do, they turn to their partner and say, “Honey, I just read this book with some great sex scenes. Wanna try them out with me?”

Yep. That’s me. Dr. Tami. Adding spice to my readers’ sex lives. Mostly in the shower and up against walls.

Anyone for levitation sex?

 

PS – I also blog over at the Writing Wenches website, once a month. This post is a slight modification of one I initially published over there. Here’s the rest of them, if you’re interested: Tami’s Writing Wenches Posts

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Join the Authors After Dark Party!

Today is an unusual Jello Shot June blog post. Today, I’m going to tell you about Authors After Dark, a readers convention that’s being held in Atlanta, Georgia this year. The dates are August 12-16, 2015. Why am I telling you this? Because I will be there! Yep. I’m a featured author this year. Oh, and I like wine. See how I pulled the Jello Shot June theme into the post? Clever, eh? Okay, anyway…

What does this mean to you? Allow me to explain…
AAD Header

It means you, along with myself, and a slew of other readers and authors, will get to learn firsthand why locals refer to it as “Hotlanta.” I’ve heard it gets so hot in August, you can fry an egg on the sidewalk. I don’t know about you, but I’d sure like to see that!

It means one last hurrah before fall, when life gets so damn busy we can hardly keep up, let alone get ahead. Think of it as a vacation. With me! I love vacations, and I love sharing them. Just don’t touch my wine. Okay, just kidding. I love sharing my wine, too. So long as there is plenty more available. It’s way more fun to drink with a friend. Or a hundred.

It means the image you have of me – and those other authors who will be there – in your head will be forever altered. Hopefully in a good way. Although I do laugh too loudly and far too often and sometimes tell raunchy jokes, and my gatekeeper tends to take its own vacation when I’ve had a few glasses of wine. So maybe this isn’t such a good idea after all…

Naked Truthsmall Undercover Heat_Cover OfLoveandDarkness (400) HRlovegumbo

It means if you are remotely obsessed with any of my books, you will have someone to talk to who is happy to analyze, expound, discuss, pick apart, and talk endlessly about them for as long as you’d like – and then some. We’ll make a contest of it. Whoever gets sick of talking about my books first has to buy the next round. I like red wine, just so you know. Although if it’s as hot as they say it will be, I may have to switch to white for the week. Just as long as it isn’t too sweet.

It means you can go to these things called “panels” where a row of authors line up behind a table and you ask questions and we have to come up with at least semi-intelligent answers. I’m not supposed to tell you who will be featured on which panels, but I will say this: I write paranormal books, specifically those about shifters. And I write blue collar romance. And comedy. And you could probably hit me up and I’ll let you know what else I may or may not write/happen to believe I know enough about to sit on a panel. Assuming I’m on any panels, of course. Which I am. Because I’m a featured author. (I just wanted to say I’m a featured author again, because it sounds so… cool.)

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It means you get to go to a ball. Yep, one of those debutant-thingies. People dress up. There are themes. I’m hosting a table at the Tiara Ball. And last I checked, it wasn’t full, so if you wanna join me for dinner…

There are also excursions. Apparently, they let us leave the hotel on occasion. Together. Readers and authors. Bonding. And if I’m involved, there will be wine. Because, well, wine goes well with bonding. Or anything.

Mostly, it’s an opportunity to hang out with a bunch of cool romance authors. Meet a few new ones. Get up close and personal with your faves. Oh, and there’s me, wherever I fall in those categories.

So you should join us. Here’s the link: AUTHORS AFTER DARK

Sign up. And get ready, HotLanta, because we’re about to take over your town!

Antagonists in Romance: The Unrepentant Mean Girl with Annette Mardis

Thanks so much, Tami, for hosting me. I’m very happy to introduce you to Monica Sims, who is an unrepentant mean girl for the majority of The Shore Thing, the debut book in my Gulf Shore contemporary romance series. Most of the action takes place at Gulf Shore Aquarium, where Monica is a marine biologist.

The Shore ThingMonica’s misbehavior costs her a relationship with aquarium photographer/videographer Evan Sanders, who dumps her after catching her cheating with the marketing director, who not only is married but also the father of newborn twins. Then, after that coworker breaks up with her, Monica files a sexual harassment claim against him, and he loses his job.

As if all that isn’t bad enough, Monica goes on to stir up trouble between Evan and his new love, aquarium education specialist Danielle “Dani” Davidson. Monica starts harassing Dani even before she and Evan officially become a couple. Here’s an example of Monica’s spiteful misbehavior:

The next day, Dani had just placed her purse in her locker when Monica strutted in, unzipping her wet suit as she went. It was obvious she didn’t have anything on beneath the neoprene, at least on top. Dani averted her eyes, not wanting to give Monica the satisfaction of noticing, but the woman veered straight for her.

“Well, if it isn’t Dori.” She peeled the wet suit down to her waist. “I almost didn’t recognize you without your puppy dog trotting along at your heels.”

“My what?”

“Your puppy dog. Evan. Last time I saw you two together, he was panting and I was waiting for him to lick your hand and sniff your ass. Maybe even lift his leg and mark his territory.”

Monica laughed as if her cutting comments were uproariously funny. Her unfettered breasts jiggled, and Dani had no doubt it was intentional. She figured it was the female equivalent of a pissing contest.

“What do you want?” Dani didn’t hide her irritation.

“I don’t want a thing, not from you, because I don’t think you can hold Evan’s interest for long.”

“Look, Evan and I are not dating. I don’t know how much clearer I can be on that. Whatever competition you think there is between you and me is all in your head. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got work to do.”

Dani slammed her locker door shut, jammed on the combination lock, and started to leave.

“Did I say we were done talking?” Monica snapped.

Dani stopped and stared her nemesis straight in the eye. “No, I did.”

“This isn’t over,” Monica warned, but Dani didn’t bother to reply as she walked away.

Monica gets her comeuppance later in the book and is forced to examine her life after her sister calls her on her bitchiness. By that point, Monica has become a pariah among her coworkers and has an Alps-sized mountain to climb to redeem herself. She eats so much crow that she nearly chokes on it.

Want to read more about how Monica gets what she deserves? Buy The Shore Thing at http://tinyurl.com/lwmdck2.

Shore Feels RightBy the opening of Shore Feels Right, Gulf Shore Book 2, Monica has become a regular at “snipe and gripe” girls’ night out gatherings at Bikini Barb’s Bar & Grill. There, she has a chance meeting with Cosby Williams, the new co-owner of Nauti-Toys watercraft rentals. He’s captivated by her beauty, intelligence, and sassiness. When she gives him and his shark-crazy nephews a personal tour of the aquarium, including a behind-the-scenes experience at Shark Pier, he finds himself falling for her.

But Monica’s bad-girl past comes back to haunt her later in the book and threatens to spoil the most promising relationship she’s ever had.

Want to find out what happens next? Buy the book at http://amzn.com/B00OFBXJIU and other e-book retailers.

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Redemption also is a big theme in Shore to Please, Gulf Shore Book 3, coming June 22 from Liquid Silver Books. Animal rights activist Tara Langley, who objects to the aquarium keeping dolphins in captivity, hasn’t made many friends around town. Gulf Shore Aquarium is the jewel of the city’s tourist district, and the locals don’t take kindly to anyone who makes trouble for the signature attraction.Shore To Please Cover

Things get even more prickly when Tara and head dolphin trainer Paul “Flipper” O’Riley become better acquainted. His boss, Kenshin Hamasaki, considers Flipper disloyal for even giving “that woman” the time of day. How will Kenshin handle it if Flipper and Tara dare to act on their mutual desire?

Kenshin’s penchant for self-preservation and playing politics may keep him in the aquarium director’s good graces, but it doesn’t endear him to Flipper and many of his coworkers. Has Kenshin forgotten the meaning of friendship and selflessness? Will he manage to redeem himself?

Unfortunately for the crew at Gulf Shore Aquarium, a more serious situation is overshadowing those personal dramas. An anonymous anti-captivity advocate is threatening increasingly vile punishments despite the fact the aquarium’s dolphins wouldn’t survive if returned to the wild.

And those threats become even more personal when Flipper finds one of the nasty notes nailed to the front door of his cottage. Will police Detective Joanna Tompkins catch the culprit(s) before someone gets badly hurt or even killed?

Shore to Please is available for preorder now at Liquid Silver Books’ website, www.lsbooks.com/pre-order-coming-soon-romance-books-c322.php. Buy it now and get a 20 percent discount!

About the series

The Gulf Shore contemporary romance series is set in the fictional west-central Florida beach town of Gulf Shore, where you’ll feel sugary white sand between your toes, the warm sun on your shoulders, and a sea breeze ruffling your hair.
You’ll meet swoon-worthy alpha males who aren’t embarrassed to cuddle a rescued baby dolphin in their muscular arms, and accomplished women looking for an equal partner who thinks that smart is sexy.
You’ll get up close and personal with sea life, join the “snipe and gripe” club for girls’ nights out, and fall in love with a talking parrot who acts like a little boy in a bird suit.
You’ll go behind-the-scenes at the local aquarium and out to the beach to rescue marine animals in distress. And once you visit Gulf Shore, you just may find yourself wishing you could stay.

Annette MardisConnect with Annette

Website: www.annettemardis.com/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorAnnetteMardis

Twitter: @AnnetteMardis48

Amazon: www.amazon.com/Annette-Mardis/e/B00E5UHPMM/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/dashboard

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/annettemardis/

Smashwords: www.smashwords.com/profile/view/Shelbypie

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=221177296&trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile_pic

Google+ https://plus.google.com/+AnnetteMardis/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nx6WNGA94bQ

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Thank you for taking the time to read another Mad May blog post. There are still a few days left in the month – and a few more posts – so be sure to check back regularly!

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