Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Find Joya at RT Booklovers Convention in Kansas City, MO #RT2013

It's my first time attending the RT Booklovers Convention and I'm soooo excited. If you're anywhere near the Sheraton Kansas City Hotel at Crown Center in MO May 1-5, hope you'll stop by to say hi. It's your chance to meet lots of great authors and get books, books and more books!

Here's where to find me throughout the convention:

Thursday, May 2nd
2-2:45 p.m. Club RT (I'll be giving away swag and chatting with readers.)
4-6 p.m. Ebook Expo (Lots of authors autographing books/chatting with readers.)

Friday, May 3rd
11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Club RT (I'll be giving away swag and chatting with readers.)
7:30-8:30 p.m. Candy and Spoons with Entangled Publishing (This promises to be hysterical. Lots of candy for readers and then Entangled authors and readers will have fun playing the card game spoons.)

Saturday, May 4th
6:30-7 p.m. FAN-tastic Day Author Appearance

Hope to see you in Kansas City, MO!

Monday, April 29, 2013

New Release: Obsession by Sharon Buchbinder #paranormal #romance #suspense

I'm super excited to feature my good friend and talented author Sharon Buchbinder. Her paranormal romantic suspense OBSESSION just released from The Wild Rose Press.
Welcome, Sharon. Please tell us about yourself.

   Thank you for having me here, Joya! I have always been a story-teller. As a child, I got into a lot of trouble for "making things up." Now, I get rewarded for making things up. I love being able create heroes and heroines readers can relate to—even crazy cat ladies. I've been writing fiction since I was in middle school and have the rejection slips to prove it. In high school, I even submitted a script to "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." on yellow-lined paper in pencil. Not surprisingly, that was rejected, too.
   As an academic (I have a PhD in Public Health), prior to publishing fiction, I published numerous non-fiction articles and two textbooks. However, I found the road to publication in fiction to be much harder. After I published some short stories in horror and mystery, a friend recommended I join the Maryland Romance Writers (MRW). I joined in 2005 and found friendship, support and the opportunity to develop as an author with MRW and the Romance Writers of America (RWA). I published my first short story in romance in 2007, and I've been pecking away at the keyboard ever since, like one of Skinner's rats, going after the pellet of publication, blending my love of mystery, suspense, and the supernatural with romance.
   We live in beautiful Baltimore, Hon, and live in purple clothes during the Ravens season (no, there are no other teams!). Dem O's are beginning to grow clothing in my closet, as well. When not rooting for the home teams, or attempting to make students, colleagues, and babies laugh, I can be found herding cats, waiting on a large gray dog, fishing, dining with good friends, or writing.
    Wow! Sounds like a verrrrry full life! What inspires you to write?
    Coffee and a deadline inspire me to write the fastest. LOL. If the clock is ticking, I am much more disciplined about hitting word counts. Otherwise, I am easily distracted by Facebook, Twitter, and researching obscure tidbits that I may or may not use for a work in progress.
Coffee? Did you say coffee? <runs out the door to Sharon's house> LOL. What would be a *perfect day* for you, Sharon?
I get up with a dream that dictates a new story, the plot already formed by my busy subconscious mind. I wrangle the cats and dog, have a light breakfast with my DH, get on the elliptical for thirty minutes, spend a minimum of time on FB and Twitter (hahaha!). I write in two hour chunks, coming out of my other world to stretch, refuel, and put dinner in the oven. Then it's time for dinner and a movie in my family room, in my pajamas. Oh wait! That's today! I'm already having my perfect day!
LOL! Yipppee! Glad you're having a perfect day. Can you tell us about the setting of Obsession? Why did you choose it?
When I began researching Chihuahua, Mexico for a setting for my new paranormal romantic suspense, OBSESSION, my primary intent was to find a location to build by villain's refuge.  Lucky for me, the rugged terrain of the Sierra Madre, and specifically,  Copper Canyon, were perfect for a hidden compound for a crazed cult leader who kidnaps his grandson because he believes the child is the Chosen One. This part of the world is remote, beautiful, and sparsely populated. The cult leader believes he has it all: isolation, control of a thousand loyal-to-the-death followers, paid off politicians, and the Chosen One. With more research, I found the setting was perfect to demonstrate the heroine's resolve to rescue her son, the hero's strength and abilities under harsh conditions, and to provide a realistic backdrop for supernatural events core to the story. In addition, I found allies for the heroine and hero in the form of the hidden indigenous people of Mexico, the Tarahumarans, also known as the RarĂ¡muri.
Copper Canyon sounds like the perfect setting! Since you write romance, I must ask...what’s the most romantic thing anyone has ever done for you?
This is going to sound crazy, but when I lost a housekeeper, I was beside myself. I have serious dust and cleaning solution allergies. My asthma kicks in with a vengeance. But, the house wasn't going to clean itself, and I still hadn't found a replacement. One Saturday, I put on my mask and gloves, dragged out the vacuum cleaner and cleaning supplies and began to get to work. After a while, I found my husband in the master bedroom, wearing a scarf on his head and scrubbing the toilet. He told me to call him "Tootsie." He was my hero that day!
Hey, I think men who clean toilets are very romantic and sexy!! So where can readers order OBSESSION?

A year after a barbaric childbirth, complete with a near-death experience and an encounter with her guardian angel, Angie Edmonds is just happy she and her son, Jake, are alive. She's finally in a good place: clean, sober, and employed as a defense attorney. But at the end of a long work day, she finds herself in a parent's worst nightmare: Jake has been kidnapped and taken across the Mexican border by a cult leader who believes the child is the "Chosen One."

Stymied by the US and Mexican legal systems, Angie is forced to ask the head of a Mexican crime syndicate for help. Much to her chagrin, she must work with Alejandro Torres, a dangerously attractive criminal and the drug lord's right-hand man. Little does she know Alejandro is an undercover federal agent, equally terrified of blowing his cover—and falling in love with her.
Find Sharon Buchbinder online:
Thanks for stopping by, Sharon! Be sure to check out Sharon's incredible book trailer HERE


Thursday, April 18, 2013

Debut Romantic Suspense Author Nancy Weeks: Love at Home and in Her Books. #NewRelease

It is my great pleasure to introduce my beautiful friend and debut author Nancy Weeks. Nancy and I met through an online critique group and became fast friends. Then she joined Maryland Romance Writers and I was thrilled to meet her in person. She's a very creative person who has a wonderfully positive outlook on life and I'm so excited about her debut novel, In the Shadow of Greed, which releases on April 29th.

Nancy, please tell us a little about yourself.
   I always choke-up when I’m asked for a short bio because I have no idea who I am. That book is still being written and it changes daily.  I have been a wife for 31 years and a mother for 24 years.  I decided before having kids that I wanted to be home with them. It went against the norm, but I felt that one hectic career in the family was enough. After moving back to Maryland from southern Germany, I decided to give up my career and became a stay-at-home mom. The moment both my kids were off to college, I began to write. Now I proudly call myself an author.
   Since I love reading the excitement of romantic suspense almost as much as I love the romance, I decided to begin my writing career in that genre. I throw an element of supernatural into the suspense to add to the conflict and tension.
That must have been very interesting to live in another country and I totally agree about suspense and romance going hand-in-hand. What kind of things inspire you to write?
   Everything---from the people in my daily life, to strangers I meet, to conversations I overhear, television shows I watch to the books and articles I read. Living my life inspires the stories that live in my head.
   As for what brings out the emotion in my writing, there is only one answer. Music. In my new release, In the Shadow of Greed, I listened to Jason Mraz, Mika, Norah Jones, Adele over and over again. Their voices brought out that heart-wrenching emotion I needed to write not only the love scenes, but those dark moments when my characters were at their worst. Somewhere Only We Know and Silenced by the Night by Keane are haunting beautiful love songs, but for me, they bought out my aggressive side. Keane’s music helped me visualize violent fight scenes. And when a scene demanded to be written in my villain, Ralph Singer’s voice, Keane’s Perfect Symmetry spoke to me like none other. I guess it’s fair to say that I couldn’t be a suspense writer without Keane. 
That's a very diverse and interesting playlist! What would be a *perfect day* for you?
My perfect day:  To wake up to a clean house, empty laundry baskets, dinner in the crock-pot, beautiful day with the temperatures in the70’s and nothing on my schedule except to write. I make a cup of coffee, and bring it out on the deck with my laptop. I load my WIP and I’m lost for hours in my happy place. If I have a little chocolate to snack on, I’m in heaven.
Ahhh, chocolate! I like that! Speaking of sweet things...what's the most romantic thing anyone has ever done for you?
I have such a great husband. I really am an incredibly lucky woman. Ed is always doing sweet little things for me. He began when we first started dating a lifetime ago at the University Texas. To mark our first month anniversary, he dropped off this huge bouquet of daisies at the front desk of my dorm. After we became engaged several months later, he added a single rose. When we were married, he added two red roses. That was just the beginning. I have had thirty-one years of sweet, adorable, simple, romantic moments like that which show me how much I’m loved. And I don’t take it for granted for a second, but thank God every day he is in my life.
That's a really sweet real-life love story!
I can't wait to read your debut novel. Where can readers pre-order In the Shadow of Greed?
In the Shadow of Greed can be pre-ordered from Amazon. Its release date is only ten days away, 29 April 2013!!!
Here's where you can find Nancy on the web:
   Brilliant cryptologist Dr. Sarah Tu races against time to block the most dangerous Internet malware ever created, a botnet called QUALNTO. While Sarah is closed off in her computer lab, her sister, Hanna, is brutally attacked and left in a coma. As Sarah reels with guilt over not being there for her sister, a web of deception closes in threatening her and everyone she loves.
   Hanna's condition is misleading. In her coma state, she is able to build a psychic bridge with FBI Special Agent Jason McNeil. Her cryptic messages plague Jason to keep Sarah safe.
   Tough and street-smart Jason McNeil doesn't believe in telepathic messages, and fights the voice inside his head. His first impression of Dr. Sarah Tu is another stiletto wearing ice-dragon on the wall path--until he witnesses her facade crumble after seeing her sister's bloody, tortured body. Jason's protective instinct kicks in. He falls for Sarah--hard.
   When an extremely dangerous arms dealer and cybercriminal discovers that Sarah blocked his botnet, he kidnaps Sarah. Placed in an impossible position, will she destroy the botnet to protect national security or release to save the man she loves?
Excerpt for In the Shadow of Greed
   He thinks I’m dead. Sarah’s coming. Help her!
   The voice quivered inside Jason’s head. He pushed away from the pillar and froze. No one was there. His gaze fell back to the woman in the bed. His eyes narrowed and he clenched his jaw, biting down so hard, pain shot up his inner ear.
   The next instant, a petite woman with long, straight, raven hair and the most beautiful, hazel eyes he had ever seen charged through the trauma unit. A security officer followed close behind and grabbed her arm, stopping her from moving any farther into the restricted area.
   Jason stared at the woman in the bed and back to the woman by the door. He knew, without a doubt, her name was Sarah. His mind raced for an explanation.
“Ma’am, you can’t be back here.” The guard tried to pull Sarah back through the doors.
  Sarah yanked out of his hold. The expression on her face was intense, unyielding. “Like hell I can’t. My sister is here. She needs me.”
   The charge nurse moved from behind a counter of the nurse’s station and stood next to the security officer. “How can I help you?”
   The nurse’s low, gentle voice seemed to have a soothing effect on Sarah. “Hanna Tu.” Her voice shuddered.
   Jason couldn’t take his eyes off Hanna’s sister. In an instant, she transformed from a stiletto wearing, ice-dragon on the war path—just the kind of woman he disliked—into a frightened, desperate woman whose vulnerabilities brought out his protective instinct.
   As her eyes wildly searched the trauma unit, the nurse reached for Sarah’s arm and guided her toward the doors.
  “We’re still assessing your sister’s condition. I’ll have one of the doctors come talk to you in the waiting room as soon as they can. She’s in good hands, I promise you.”
  “I need to see her. I need to know she’s okay. The police wouldn’t allow me into her apartment. No one has told me anything. There was so much blood.” She sucked in a deep breath as tears clouded her eyes. “Please let me see her for a moment.”
   Her eyes narrowed on the cubicle surrounded by a curtain. One of the nurses moved the fabric aside and left carrying a tray of vials. Sarah’s gaze fell on her sister. “Oh God! Hanna!”
   She took a step toward her sister, but her body began to tremble and her knees buckled. Jason rushed forward and caught her as her body collapsed. With one arm wrapped around her waist, he used his other hand to lift the badge that hung around his neck and flashed it at the nurse. “She’s with me.”
   He then found an empty chair away from a direct view of the cubicle and lowered Sarah into it. He knelt, keeping his arm around her. Her body shook violently and she gasped for air. The charge nurse brought over a cup of water and handed it to Jason. He brought it to Sarah’s lips.
   “Drink, Sarah, it will help.”
   She sipped the water and closed her eyes, taking in several deep breaths. “W-who hurt her? W-why?”
   “We don’t know, but we’ll find out. He’ll pay for this.”
   Sarah finally glanced up at him and pulled away. “Who are you?”
   And the ice-dragon’s back. Jason clenched his jaw to keep a smile from spreading across his face. He couldn’t put his finger on the why, but this woman intrigued him. “Detective Jason McNeil.”
  “Why are you here and not out finding the person who hurt my sister?”
   Don’t let her push you away. She needs you, we need you.
   Jason was taken aback by the weak, small voice in his head. What the hell was going on? Finding his voice, he said, “Someone tried to kill your sister.” He glanced toward Hanna’s cubicle. A crushing anger boiled up from deep within his gut. “The guy who attacked her has killed at least three other times we know about and he didn’t mean to leave Hanna alive. I’m not giving him a chance to finish the job.”
   Oh God, he’s here… He’s here! Don’t let him near Sarah! 


Caution! Researching Ghosts Can Lead To Sleepless Nights. #DecadentJourney #DecadentAuthors

Welcome to a fun celebration of Decadent Publishing!

   My journey with Decadent started with a ghost. Yep! That's right. A beautiful ghost that haunted an apartment where a handsome, yet tortured, hero lived. HEREAFTER (Book 1, Hauntings at Inner Harbor) is the first in a triology about a haunted Baltimore apartment building. The story has a very unusual twist to it, one that has surprised a lot of readers. And boy, do I love surprising readers! :) Researching ghosts and psychic abilities was a lot of fun. I watched almost every episode of "Ghost Hunters," trying to get my details right. I also read lots of ghosts books and blogs. Sometimes this got a little scary. Especially when I stayed up late when the rest of my family was asleep. But I liked getting scared! It helped me understand how someone who saw a ghost might feel.
   The generous folks and my fellow authors at Decadent have been so supportive. And now, I'm thrilled to announce that the second story in the series, ALTERED FREQUENCY (Book 2, Hauntings at Inner Harbor), will be releasing soon. It features a Baltimore DJ and a Baltimore policeman. I visited a local radio station to get a first-hand experience of what a DJ does. Talk about fun!!
   And to continue my journey at Decadent, it's time to finish my final revisions of the third story and get it submitted. My journey continues! Thanks, Decadent.

   When by-the-numbers accountant Rob Morrison, a skeptic of all things paranormal, moves into a new apartment and discovers it is haunted by the corporeal ghost of a beautiful woman, he musthastily reconsider his beliefs and revisit his painful past.
   With no memory of her time on earth, Angie Barsotti doesn’t understand why she’s compelled to visit the same apartment every night as a ghost caught between two worlds. If she’s to have a chance to move on, she needs to find the missing pieces of her life and death through the man who lives there…if only he’d believe in her.
   Together they struggle to find the truth about her death and stumble upon a very pleasurable way to time travel, hopeful they can prevent her death. But someone doesn’t want them to discover the truth. And if she’s human again, will she have any memories of her time as a ghost…and more importantly, will she remember the man who helped her find her way?

Buy Links for Hereafter
 Decadent Publishing  Amazon  Barnes and Noble

Be sure to check out these Decadent authors who are sharing their Decadent Journey today on the Daily Dose of Decadent Blog . Thanks!!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

It's Okay to Lean on Someone Else Once in a While #SnippetSunday

Welcome to another Snippet Sunday! In this excerpt from Hereafter (Book 1, Hauntings at Inner Harbor), Angie discovers it doesn't make her weak to accept help. Sometimes we all need someone to lean on.

He lifted her chin with a finger. "I promise, I’ll find out what you need to know. I’ll do everything I can to help you."

Angie smiled, surprised that she could when her heart swelled with misery. If she could find out what happened on her own, she would. But she couldn’t. She needed Rob. The expression on his face, the sadness in his eyes told her he wanted to know her story almost as badly as she did.

Hereafter, a contemporary romance with a ghostly twist, is available now:
Decadent Publishing   Amazon   Barnes&Noble

Altered Frequency (Book 2, Hauntings at Inner Harbor) is coming soon!

Hope you'll check out some of the other writers on Snippet Sunday by following #snippetSunday or #snipSun. Thanks for stopping by!