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Monday, December 31, 2012

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Beginning January 1, 2013 
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Saturday, December 22, 2012



“Io, Saturnalia” by Rita Bay

Saturnalia was "the best of days," according to the Roman poet Catullus. The ancient and rather wild Roman festival honored the Roman god Saturn, one of the early agricultural gods. This festival of light which led up to the winter solstice was originally celebrated on December 17th and later expanded an additional week to December 23rd. Lighted candles, often given as gifts during the celebration, symbolized the search for knowledge and truth and the approach of the new year. The celebration ended with the exchange of gifts among family, friends, and the slaves.

IO SATURNALIA. Saturnalia was a holiday from all forms of work. Schools were closed, and athletic workouts were suspended. The courts were closed, so no justice was administered, and no declaration of war could be made. In Rome, the festival began with a sacrifice at the Temple of Saturn in the Roman Forum and a public banquet which was attended by Saturn’s statue that reclined on one of the couches used for dining. The revelers then took the celebration outside where shouts of "Io Saturnalia" filled the streets. (Io, pronounced "yo," was an expression of elation.)

MASTERS SERVE SLAVES. On December 18th and 19th, Romans continued their celebration in their homes. Those who could afford it sacrificed a suckling pig, a traditional offering for an earth-god, for the feast. The slaves and the masters reversed roles. The masters put aside their togas, donned skimpy outfits with peaked conical caps often traditionally worn by Greeks (and freed slaves), and served the slaves during the banquet.

OK TO BE NAUGHTY. Gambling which was frowned upon at any other time for the citizens and forbidden to the slaves was permitted during Saturnalia. Rampant overeating and drunkenness was the rule. The Stoic philosopher and statesman Seneca (the teacher of Nero who eventually ordered Seneca to commit suicide) wrote "the greatest part of the city is in a bustle. Loose reins are given to public dissipation." In the years of the Roman empire, the Lord of Misrule, the Saturnalicius princeps, presided over the conduct of the holiday. He could give bizarre orders which had to be obeyed. ("Sing naked." or "Toss him in the Tiber. ")

CHRISTIANS STEAL THE DAY. Saturnalia was popular until the 3rd or 4th century AD when it died out with the rise of Christianity. Some elements of the celebration like caroling and the giving of gifts were intentionally carried over into the Christmas celebrations. The Lord of Misrule can also be found in the Italian carnival celebrations.

ABOUT RITA, HER BOOKS, & A GIVEAWAY. Rita Bay is an author of paranormal (Champagne Book Group) and historical (Siren BookStrand) romances. Her blog ( features daily posts on the history and culture of Europe and the United States omitted from the history books AND blurbs and excerpts of her books. Rita’s books are available from Amazon. Leave a comment and your name will be placed in a drawing on December 23rd for an eBook of Rita’s shapeshifter paranormal from Champagne Books, Into the Lyons’ Den.

Happy Holidays, Rita Bay.

Friday, December 21, 2012



Outside Looking In: Holiday Stories that Feed Our Need
Lou Sylvre

I was raised in a home and religious community where girls weren’t good enough, gays were Satan’s pawns, and Christmas was never celebrated. Neither did we observe birthdays, Easter, Valentine’s day, or any other holiday, but Christmas and the other winter holidays always seemed to be the ones that mattered to me. No singing in the grade school Christmas concert for me. No secretly shopping and wrapping. Of all the holidays, the ones that brightened the winter night were the hardest to endure from the outside looking in.

As a girl I walked down the street and eyeballed lights—only fat, rounded bulbs back then, no such thing as LED. I silently oohed and aahed house after house, my favorite being the odd one out, with eaves and doors and a bright Star of David all decked out in brilliant blue. The lights were enough to make me feel a little left out, but it was the Christmas trees set up inside, set to be seen through windows, that left me with a hollow kind of loneliness. The trees themselves came in a mystifying variety! In the ‘60s in Los Angeles County—an almost-desert megalopolis with no snow and more palms than pines—some people set up red and blue and even pink artificial trees, with matching garlands and ornaments all one color. I admit I liked the pink ones, even though I thought the idea of a pink pine rather odd.

But sometimes the trees were green and just imperfect enough for me to be sure they were real.

Those, the green ones, were the hardest to pass by. I wanted to run across the yard from the sidewalk to stand in the flower bed and peer inside. The lights on those trees glowed like colorful balls of family love. Their ornaments suggested years of haphazard collecting and maybe romance. Realistic assessment? Probably not, but from the sidewalk, a child looking in, I felt it—felt warmth and chocolate with marshmallows and some lavender-scented grandmother hugging me whether I wanted her to or not. I was sure those homes must have held large, laughing families and pampered pets. They must have been the scene of board games and bedtime stories and a table laden with sweet and savory foods no child should go without.

Oh yes, I’m all grown up (long ago), and I know better now. I did not adopt my parents’ religion once I was old enough to make my own, separate mistakes and, in fact, they stopped practicing that cruel faith about the time I left home. I make Christmas now with and for my children and grandchildren and my remaining parent, for friends and even sometimes for strangers. I know Christmas from the inside out.


Yes, there’s a ‘but.’ I’ve learned something disturbing, and if it isn’t true for everyone, I believe it is true for many. This is it: no matter how wonderful our holiday, there’s a little piece of us, a shadow, that remains outside, gazing in to imagined warmth and light with some combination of bright wonder, dark contempt, loneliness, and love.

For those of us who love books, that shadow might be the part of us that wants stories of holidays, wants characters to live all our conflicting emotions, wants word-built houses, metaphorical trees, and presents that symbolize all the miracles and sorrows in our dark-solstice dreams. Sometimes we want stories of inclusion, stories that feel so good, so sweet. But sometimes we want to also see the darkness. Maybe we are, in whole or in part, outside looking in—lonely or grieving or depressed or hurt or sick or inexplicably afraid. Or maybe we really do feel good, feel included and loved and joyful, but we remember darker days.

Wherever we stand, whatever our need stories fill it, feed it, nourish us.

I write mostly, these days, male/male romance, and I read a lot in the genre because I love it—love the characters and the romance. One holiday story I read some time ago that was particularly nourishing was Isabelle Rowan’s short novella, Twelve Days. I wrote a review of this story for Goodreads back in January 2012. I kept it pretty simple, referring readers to my review of A Note in the Margin, the full-length novel that started the sometimes bittersweet story of David and John, of which Twelve Days is like a coda. Here’s what I said about Twelve Days.
In this forty page holiday story, author Isabelle Rowan continues the well-written narrative, creative story, and interesting, well-realized characters that she introduced in A Note in the Margin. She takes them through the holidays, which, just as in "real life", present both joys and pitfalls for the men. Mostly, they're in for some surprises from people they had relegated to their past. This is well worth a read. Even though Rowan didn't leave me with a feeling that the story was incomplete, I was sorry that it ended.
That brief review doesn’t really do justice, I realize now, for a story that takes Christmas head on, even though it occurs where December is summer. Decorations, homelessness, loss, love, and new chances are all in there. Some lighter seasonal reads I’d recommend in the M/M genre: The Christmas Wager by Jamie Fessenden (historical), A Walk in the Dark by Kate McMurray, and Winter Rescue, by Dawn Kimberly Johnson.

I’m going to close with a Christmas day excerpt from one of my own books, Yes: A Vasquez and James Novella. For those unfamiliar with the story Luki and Sonny, who have been together about six years, are struggling with Luki’s lung cancer, so the holiday is both wonderful shared tradition and scary reminder of everything that isn’t quite right in their world.

The tree stood seven feet tall, stopping just below the ceiling. An angel—clearly male—topped it. Every year, Luki argued that it was no angel at all, but St. Christopher. This year had to be the same; that was important to Luki. “St. Christopher,” he wheezed.

“Gabriel,” Sonny responded, his light-hearted smile catching. “Archangel extraordinaire.”

Sonny had cut and packed the tree from the forest surrounding the house, his own land. Sometimes he looked for a rare spruce, but this time he chose a Douglas fir because it didn’t have the pungent smell that might irritate Luki’s airways. Its branches hung heavy with needles and ornaments and light, and though it didn’t quell Luki’s sadness, it did give him peace. Maybe I don’t mind dying, he thought, knowing how horrified Sonny would be if he said it aloud. Maybe it’s just time… when Christmas is over. We’ll see. He knew, somehow, that if he chose to die he wouldn’t have to take his own life; all he would have to do is let go, and it would happen. Easy.

Josh and Ruthie would be late. They’d gone to pick up Jackie, Luki’s younger nephew, from the airport. Jackie had flown home from New York, where he was studying psychology in order to put his own horrifying experiences—which Luki had rescued him from—to good use. Since they didn’t know how late it would be when they arrived, and they didn’t know how long Luki’d be able to stay up, they went ahead with Christmas, just the three of them.

“Like the three wise men,” Kaholo said, swigging rum punch, and laughing.

“Where?” Luki asked, making the other two laugh. He smiled too. Sonny came over to his chair, stepping around Luki’s ever-present canine companion. He bent low by Luki’s ear, his breath tickling in a way that made Luki very sorry he was sick.

“Luki, that smile made my whole Christmas.” Carefully, he lifted the oxygen tube away and kissed him, very gentle, very sweet. A little more than a friendly peck, a little less than passion.

Luki met his eyes, wondering if the unlikely mixture of emotion he felt—gratitude and longing—could be seen in his own eyes through the glaze of drugs and fatigue. When Sonny took his hand, Luki gave it a squeeze, stronger than either of them expected. “Thank you,” he said, talking about everything.

Kaholo had a smile on his face, handing him a small package sloppily wrapped in paper printed with words in tiny writing, Peace, Love, Joy, over and over again. Luki started to pull the paper loose, but his uncle interrupted.

“Mili, you have to shake the package, see if you can guess! That’s a rule—you know that.”

Luki smiled again and made a show of shaking the package, which didn’t make any noise. “Wild guess: a DVD.” Because of course it was exactly the size and shape for that.

Kaholo said, “Darn!” slapping his thigh and swigging rum, again.

Paper stripped away, Luki found a copy of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. He smiled his appreciation. He and Kaholo had long since decided it qualified as the funniest movie of all time.

Sonny became suddenly shy, or worried, or reluctant, when it came time for him to give Luki his present. “I’m afraid you won’t like it, Luki.”

“It’s a tapestry, right? It’s what you’ve been weaving, these past weeks.”


“Have you ever woven something I didn’t like?”

“This is different.” But, having said that, he stood up and went to get the hung and weighted weaving. “I just don’t want you to misunderstand.” He turned it around, held it up, and let it unfurl.

As soon as he saw it, Luki knew what it was that worried his husband. Sonny was afraid that Luki would see the way the weaving depicted him and feel angry, think that Sonny had been insensitive. Because Luki hardly looked like that anymore, fit and strong and all but invincible. But he didn’t dwell on that, because both Sonny’s work and the memory it provoked held such perfect grace. “I remember,” he said, and the words brought home the feel of sea breeze, warm, damp sand beneath his feet, and waves rolling in over miles of beach deserted but for birds and Sonny, approaching as if conjured by the sun.

“You were teaching me Tai Chi,” Sonny said.

“Your hair got in my mouth.”

“The wind came up!”

“You kissed me,” Luki said.


Luki looked into Sonny’s deep, dark eyes, looked so intently that once again he saw that aura, that brilliance that surrounded him, or maybe radiated from inside him. “It’s perfect,” he said. “Thank you.”

He fell asleep with his memories.
Leave a comment to win a copy of Yes: A Vasquez and James Novella. (This is ebook only. If the winner prefers an ebook version of my 2 full length Vasquez and James novels, that can be substituted.)

About the Author:Lou Sylvre hails from Southern California but now lives and writes on the rainy side of Washington State. When she’s not writing, she’s reading—fiction in nearly every genre, romance in all its tints and shades, and the occasional book about history, physics, or police procedure. Her personal assistant is Boudreau, a large cat who never outgrew his kitten meow. She loves her family, her friends, a Chihuahua named Joe, and (in random order) coffee, chocolate, sunshine, and wild roses.

Visit her blogs at, and, or contact her at lou(dot)sylvre(at)gmail(dot)com.



'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the town,
The fire siren echoed blaring its sound.
The firefighters came running from far and from near,
And raced to the trucks quickly donning their gear.

And I in my bunkers, my boots and my hat,
Jumped to the engine to see where the fire's at.
Down at the corner of Fifth and of Oak,
The dispatcher informed us of a house filled with smoke.

Smoke poured from the sides, from up and from down,
Yet up on the roof there was none to be found.
So up to the rooftop we raised up a ladder,
And climbed to the top to see what was the matter.

I came to the chimney and what did I see,
But a fellow in red stuck past his knees.
Well we tugged and we pulled until he came out,
Then he winked with his eye and said with a shout.

"These darn newfangled chimneys they make them too small,
For a fellow as I, not skinny at all."
With a twitch of his nose he dashed to his sleigh,
and called to his reindeer, "AWAY now, AWAY."

As we rolled up our hoses he flew out of sight,
Saying "God bless our firefighters" and to all a good night!

--Author Unknown

Hi! I’m Tonya Ramagos. As an author of more than 40 books, most of which focus on men and women who serve our country, I often come across true heroes and stories in my research that fill my heart with more gratitude and respect than I can describe. I’ve always loved the above poem. It serves as a gentle reminder to me that there are men and women out there on the job every day putting their lives on the line to rescue and protect those in need, even Santa Clause. :)

As I prepare for the Christmas holiday—decorating the house, buying gifts for my loved ones, planning the celebration feast—the fact that I wouldn’t be doing any of this if it weren’t for the altruism of the service men and women overseas and here on America soil who sacrifice the very things I am enjoying to keep me safe stays in my mind.

So, this holiday season, please remember to say a special thanks to all of our heroes giving up those special things we sometimes take for granted to keep us safe and free. I know I will. :)

As part of the Long and Short Reviews Christmas celebration, Tonya is giving away a .pdf download of her Christmas Cracker story, Stupendously Yours.

Tired of mediocre sex, Zoie Qwin is hot for adventure. When she can't find the excitement she craves in the men around town, she reaches across the world to the one man who's ready and capable if not willing to take her hormones on a fanciful journey to Multiple Orgasmville. Zoie Qwin never managed to snag Lieutenant Commander Nash Beagan's sexually daring heart, but Lady Zest in all her erotically written letters has.

Living out her escapades in a pen and paper relationship with her fantasy man proves to be enough, until Nash, home on a short leave, takes the stage at a male Christmas auction. Lady Zest is ready to break the bank for the Christmas present of the millennium, but Zoie wants the wicked desire in Nash's bedroom-blues all for herself. A snack in the parking lot, a drink at the theatre, and a window feast next to the Christmas tree delivers exactly that, until Zoie realizes her cover's been blown and Nash is out to make her and Lady Zest stupendously his forever.

About the Author:
Tonya Ramagos is a best-selling author of contemporary, fantasy, paranormal, and cowboy novels. She spends most of her time in a fictional world dreaming up hot hunks and head-strong heroines. When she’s not writing, she’s reading. Anything from legal and military non-fiction to any genre of romance can be found on her Kindle. Her music tastes are just as varied with favorite artists ranging from Billy Currington to Disturbed. Her idea of relaxing is curling up on the sofa or her back deck with a book and her favorite beverage. Born and raised in Pascagoula, MS, she is now a resident of Chattanooga, TN where she lives with her boyfriend and their five children.

Join Tonya and The Heroes of Silver Springs on Christmas Eve at Siren-BookStrand for the release of Going Under [The Heroes of Silver Springs 9]. And swing by on New Year’s Eve for a FREE Silver Springs short story celebration.

Twitter: @tonyaramagos
Buy links:



Christmas Memories

One of the joys of the Christmas season is a tree twinkling with lights. The trimming of the tree is a wonderful tradition. When the fragrant fir took a prominent place in the living room you knew Christmas was just around the corner. When I was young decorating the tree was an exciting event. Stringing the lights and placing the ornaments while eating popcorn and drinking hot-spiced cider added to the party atmosphere. The angel resting atop the tree was the final touch. The room quieted as the house lights were turned off. Then it happened. The tree lit up the living room in its multi-colored glory. Everyone cheered. Santa was coming.

December is a great month when you’re young. Days when folks went caroling and hot cocoa with marshmallows warmed you up after an afternoon spent playing in the snow. Wrapped presents begin to appear beneath the tree. I recall shaking the packages and trying to peek beneath the bright paper. I was sure each one held a treasure, a wonderful toy that I’d being wanting since Easter. My imagination wouldn’t consider socks or pajamas.

As December days gave way to darkness the Christmas lights would come to life, turning my house and the neighborhood into a magical place ready for Santa’s arrival.

I no longer wait for Santa, but I still love Christmas trees. My house is too small to put one in the living room so I put mine in the backyard. I string it with lights and decorate it with colorful bulbs. I live in California where the temperature is mild, so I can sit outside in the evening, enjoy a glass of wine, and experience the magic of Christmas.

In celebration of this wonderful holiday, I’m offering a prize. If you’d like to win a PDF copy of my werewolf Christmas story, Holiday Moon, please enter by posting a comment.

B.J McCall

About the Author: B.J. McCall lives in sunny California. When she needs a break from writing, BJ likes to take a long walk. Four miles later, she’s ready to get back to work.

BJ is multi-published in print and ebooks. She writes paranormal and sci-fi stories on a regular basis for Changeling Press. She’s also published with eRed Sage and Cobblestone Press. 2012 marks a decade of writing for Ellora’s Cave. Her books are available at Amazon, B&N, and AllRomanceEbooks.




5 Ways to Get Sexy over the Holiday Season
with Louisa Bacio

Tis the season for stress. If the holidays tend to make you feel overwhelmed, take a few minutes to unwrap these goodies, and keep the sexy going. Here are five off-the-cuff treats to make your holiday season brighter.

5) A Red & Green Bow – Tie it around your favorite part of him, and unwrap the package very slowly.

4) Candy Cane Stripped Thigh Highs – Have you seen these sexy stockings? They’ll make your lover want to slowly strip them off your luscious legs.

3) Red Ruffled Undies – Do these panties make my butt look big? Oh, I hope so. If he catches a peak of these naughty-nice unmentionables, they’ll drive him wild.

2) Candy Cane Lane Massage Candle – The adult store features some wicked fun. As this vegan candle melts, spreading its delicious scent, use the spoon to scoop out the goodness for personal massage.

1) Holiday Betty – Oh, yes, dare. Have you checked out the specialty hair dye for the most private parts? Betty Beauty even features holiday stencils ( Now that’s a story in the making.

Contest: Got another way to get sexy over the season? Share. Please leave a comment with a valid email address, and the winner will be able to choose one book from my backlist.

Here’s a look at a new release:

The Vampire, The Witch & The Werewolf 4: The Wolfe Pack

Silver Ashe can’t let go of the desire to find her birth father and the urge to join a pack. Against the wishes of her brother, Trevor, and her vampire-lover, Nick, Silver leaves New Orleans for the woods of Louisiana.

As the guard and a dominant member of the Wolfe Pack, Viktor isn’t too sure of the city-dwelling stranger who comes trespassing. With the lack of female werewolves, Viktor soon sees Silver as a potential mate. Too bad she’s already spoken for by a bloodsucker.

Trapped between worlds, Silver’s faced with choosing between the lover she’s known most of her life, and the budding relationship with Viktor, where her future may lay. It’ll take some sweet talking and a whole lot of loving for Silver to find her place within the pack.

Available now via Ravenous Romance, Amazon, Barnes&Noble and other eRetailers.

Hopefully, you will fall in love with Nick and Viktor as much as I did.


Louisa Bacio



Wow, what a great Christmas Gift. I don’t blog but have always wanted to get started, so a Christmas Party is the best of all ways to get involved. Especially since I can give away a gift. I find one of the best things about the season is the excuse to give gifts. I like to find that special something that will fit each person.

I can remember as a small child, my father had died and we were poorer than Church mice. My sister and I slept in the same small room and went to bed early on Christmas Eve with lots of hopes and wishes. Half asleep I saw a shadow come into our room and watched in mystery as mother picked up our two old dolls. Getting up the next morning, we saw the most beautiful sight, under our small tree. There was our two dolls, totally transformed into glorious Princesses. Mother had spent weeks making clothes from scrapes, sewing on buttons and paste jewelry until we had the most beautiful dolls in the neighborhood.

I learned early from that lovely woman, to know what giving really means. I also learned from the fact that she outlived three husbands and had numerous admirers until she died, that love comes in many disguises. She was never bashful about teaching us about sex and sharing the important things in life with us, such as enjoy it but don’t flaunt it. So the best part about my stories is that my mother would have approved and read with delight. I write Erotic Romance sometimes in comtemporary settings and sometimes in Sci/Fi. But I like a happy ending whether the characters realize it or not.

I think I will enjoy giving away one of my books called TRADING PARTIES. This story has an interesting epilogue. I wrote it first as a Halloween story, one that can be enjoyed any time of the year, but in talking about the story line to a friend, she said, “Wait, you can’t leave her standing alone on the sidewalk.”

She was right, so I wrote the second story, a Christmas story called CELEBRATE A HOLIDAY EVE that brings a happy love story to it’s rightful end. People ask us authors where we get out ideas. Sometimes it is as simple as sitting and talking to a friend.

About the Author:
M. Garnet, or known to her growing family as Muriel, sits comfortably in a custom designed office that contains a wall filled desk that holds her Mac, a PC and a flat screen Sony. Against a large window is a drafting table that is surrounded by her painting needs for the stress relief that she laughs about as she often paints in watercolors.

The window frames the usual that often inspires her, a panorama of Florida, rain or shine, large birds in the sky or heavy damp winds moving the pines and palm fronds. Her favorite companion, Cayo, a King Charles Spaniel, looks up with hopeful eyes waiting for the click of the keys to stop so that they can go out to the large pool in back or a walk in front where the squirrels play. Life is good, and so is her imagination.

You can reach her at her web site you can also find me on the Authors Page at



I’m Dreaming of a Green Christmas

What? That’s not how the song goes? Well that’s how it goes in my house. You see, after a lifetime of having white Christmases in Illinois, my family packed up and moved to central Texas a year ago. And so green is the color of Christmas here. Okay, maybe sometimes it’s brown. But it most definitely won’t be white.

The move presented a bit of a culture shock at first. And I did miss being close to my mom and sister (not to mention the nieces). But one thing I’ve found I don’t miss is the snow. Yep, didn’t even miss it on Christmas day. I’ve discovered I can live without it. Truth be told, not having snow actually makes the season easier.

Yep, I’m dreaming of a green Christmas. And, since my newest book—Bond Betrayed—features a rather unconventional hero and heroine, I’m betting Nikki and Isaac are looking forward to a green Christmas as well.

Just how nontraditional are they? Well, Nikki is a seductress—able to bend any male’s will with a mere touch. And Isaac is an enforcer who’s willing to break the rules he’s paid to enforce to accomplish his goals. Not enough? Okay. Here’s a look at their meeting. You can decide from there.

“Why don’t I know you?” The deep timbre of his voice made heat pool at her core.

Studying his face, she thought there was something vaguely familiar about him, but she let it go. She’d been forced out of the Community too long ago for her to remember him even if she had known him back then. And if he knew who she was, he’d be running in the other direction. Her last name had a tendency to evoke that response.

Arching an eyebrow inquisitively, she gave him her most seductive smile. “My best guess? It’s because we’ve never met.”

“That’s unfortunate. I would’ve enjoyed meeting you.”

Her breath caught at the raw sensuality surrounding the man. She shouldn’t be standing so close to him—not if she wanted to keep the tenuous grasp of control she still had. But she couldn’t bear the idea of moving away. “I’m sure you would’ve.”

“Maybe we should meet.”

She wasn’t ignorant to their ways—this wasn’t an invitation to tea. This was exactly what she’d been hoping for as she’d made her way over to him. But, no matter how strongly he affected her, she couldn’t afford to be reckless.

“Maybe, but...”

“But what?”

But she wasn’t suicidal. Not exactly something one could articulate without raising suspicion, though. She took a small step toward him and immediately regretted it. Standing so close, the pull was stronger, so intense she found it was a struggle to remember why she’d taken the step in the first place. “I’d need to know who owns you first.”

He stared at her as if confused for a moment.

“Your family and alliances,” she clarified. “Will you let me see them?” It was a daringly bold question but, if she was going to do this—and she really wanted to do this—she needed to make sure it wasn’t some sort of trick.

“Are there any you’re looking for—specifically that is?” As he slowly unbuttoned the top two buttons of his shirt, she saw the beginning of the elaborate series of tattoos and mentally kicked herself. Only she would stumble upon someone so well-connected his entire torso would be inked. “Or should I strip down for you right here in the parking lot?”

Want more? I’m giving away a download of Bond Betrayed to one commenter. All you have to do is tell me if you’d rather have a white or a green Christmas. Make sure to leave your e-mail address in the comment so I can get ahold of you if you win. The winner will be announced in the comments on Dec. 23rd.

Thanks for stopping by and thank you Long and Short Reviews for having me on today.

You can find the blurb to the book on Ellora’s Cave, on my website, or on Amazon.

Thursday, December 20, 2012



I am Marie Ashley and I live in Alberta, Canada. We had a huge snow storm about a week ago and we still have a foot of snow on the ground. I do believe that we have winter to stay as when I got up this morning, again, big fluffy snowflakes were falling and we had another inch or so covering the stuff that had already fallen. Hubby was swearing when he got up because he was going to have to shovel... again.

It’s not that cold out though. It was about 34 degrees F and/or +4 C today... nice and crisp and after the snow stopped falling it was bright and clear... a nice winter day.

This won’t disappear now until March so we are in for a long winter. I hope the temp stays around the 0 Celsius mark or 32 degrees F. That will make for a bearable winter. Winter with all its snow is usually here for almost 5 months of the year. I envy those of you who live in the warmer climates at this time of the year but I don’t in the summer as we have beautiful, warm weather then.

Our neighbour’s girls were having a snowball fight this morning and I was expecting them to build a snowman but it never did get done. The neighbour across the road had his snow blower out and cleared the street in front of his house and several others but he never came across the road *sigh* to clear ours. It would have been nice.

We should begin to see the Christmas lights going up on the different houses soon. It is so pretty *grin* with all the coloured lights on the houses and the outdoor trees and the white snow sparkling along the way.

We moved in July, from Southern Alberta to a more Northern location in Alberta so I sold my Christmas tree and a lot of my outdoor lights before we moved... will have to go shopping soon to replace those items as I cannot be without my Christmas tree.

Hopefully we won’t get too many storms that clog up the streets this winter. I have my winter tires on my vehicle so I am ready for the cold and in a way... I am looking forward to the winter season.

Happy Holidays to all and to all...

Happy Reading!

Contest info: I am giving away one free copy of my book The Promotion so leave your contact info and I will draw from the comments to this post. I will post the winner as a comment here and on my blog:

Buy Link for The Promotion:



Christmas Fun

I know the Christmas season is usually about family, good food and get-togethers, but let’s face it: it’s also about gifts…lol. At least, gifts and Santa Claus were probably of prime importance to us when we were children, and who could blame us?

During this Christmas season, I reminisce about some funny memories as a child about receiving gifts, which were meant to be ‘joke-gifts’. Let me tell you, as a child there is not much sense of humor about having a practical joke played on you, but now that I am older, I think it’s all pretty funny!

I remember one Christmas when my sister and I were presented solemnly with one present for both of us, and upon unwrapping it, I was horrified.

It was a garbage can. Not any garbage can, mind you. This one did have Snow White and the Seven Dwarves on it. But it was still a garbage can. My six year old heart broke. As my sister politely thanked my parents, and discussed the merits of the artwork adorning this item, I started to cry, believing I had been, in a word, “ripped-off.” Oh, I knew I wasn’t behaving well, it’s the thought that counts of course, but what were my parents thinking when they associated our present with waste disposal?

My parents did not expect that reaction, momentary disappointment, surely, but not utter distress, and particularly my heartrending reaction contrasted with my sister’s gracious one. So very quickly, within seconds, the other ‘real’ presents came out, and my parents’ playful joke revealed.

That’s not the last time they ‘got us’ either. We probably still had an old eight track stereo long after other families had the new stereo technology, and I remember at one point I could not listen to the music of my new favorite bands in the eighties, like Duran Duran and Culture Club. We were given cassettes of these bands as gifts, which delighted my sister and I, until we realized we couldn’t actually play them on the eight track!

Our sadness turned quickly to joy when another gift was brought out, which you guessed it, was a cassette player!

I guess I learned a couple things through these experiences, one: my parents are jokers, and two: I don’t always take jokes well, at least, not as an unsophisticated child. But I am older now, and appreciate what they did. Sometimes delaying the gratification builds up the excitement. I will always remember these gifts and the way my parents tried to make the gifts memorable.

Because, after all, it’s all in the giving! Speaking of which, I have a gift to give away.

A copy of my new release, Irish Magic, an erotic paranormal romance from Secret Cravings Publishing!

Mysterious Ireland is famous for its magical lore. But Kelly Murphy is here to mend a broken heart; not chase pots of gold. She can’t help being enchanted, though, by the beauty and charm of the land. Not to mention being completely captivated by local hunk and tour guide Sean Ahearn!

But it’s more than Ireland that’s seducing Kelly. After wandering onto a fairy hill, Kelly experiences the most passionate night of her life. It’s who it’s with that has her stumped.

Is it sexy Sean or is fairy mischief afoot?

In a land where everyone believes, can Kelly find the courage to let go of the past and take a leap of faith?

How do you get this gift? Just post a comment, and I will be drawing one lucky winner who does so on December 23rd!

Happy Holidays, and Happy reading!

About the Author: In the daytime, Chloe Waits works in healthcare taking temperatures, and by night she sends them sky rocketing by writing white hot contemporary and paranormal erotic romance. A Toronto based author, Chloe Waits has fond memories growing up thumbing through Harlequins to get to the 'good stuff,'and blames this formative experience for all that she does! You can find her work at Secret Cravings Publishing, Phaze Publishing, Clean Sheets, and The Erotic Woman.

Find the author online at




Happy holidays! Have you ever wanted to spend Christmas in a bright, wild city like Las Vegas? It's an amazing place this time of year. The casinos try to outdo each other with lavish decorations and exciting offers. Imagine palm trees strung with multicolored lights and cocktail waitrons dressed as reindeer. Lots of fun!

Some people say the slot machines are 'looser' during the holidays, and they pay off more. Maybe that's why Boone and Gigi, the characters in my new holiday story Cowboy Jackpot: Christmas were so lucky. Or perhaps it was fate? Check out the book blurb of the first book in the Cowboy Jackpot Series.

A lucky first kiss in front of a Las Vegas slot machine pays off big for bull rider Boone Hancock and New York college student Gigi Colberg-Staub. During the day they spend together as VIP guests of the casino, an intense attraction develops. Throughout the night they share in the big bed of the comped suite, hot, sensual moves ignite wild climaxes.

When Gigi receives a miscommunication, she believes Boone thinks of her as one-night buckle bunny. She confronts him, but Boone convinces himself it's best for both of them if she goes on believing that, and he lets her walk out of his life. When he realizes his mistake, and then sees the sacrifice Gigi made for him, is it too late to win her back?
Cowboy Jackpot: Christmas is available in digital format at Smashwords and Amazon, and in paperback at Createspace and Amazon.

Where would you love to spend the holidays? What's your dream Christmas vacation? I'm giving away an ecopy of one of my backlist books on Sunday, December 23, to one lucky commenter.

Thanks for stopping by!
"Rode Hard and Put Up Satisfied"



My favorite part of the holidays…
By Cassandra Carr

It’s funny. I love the holiday season. I love buying presents, wrapping presents, putting up the tree, decorating the house – all that fun stuff. But now that I have a daughter (who just turned four in early December), watching the looks of wonder and joy on her face as she experiences the holidays is truly the best part.

A little bit before Thanksgiving, my husband (aka the sucker who can’t say no) had my daughter out at a store. I don’t remember which one and it doesn’t matter. She mentioned she wanted to do another gingerbread house like the one we did last year. The sucker bought a kit. Guess what happened then?

“I want to make the gingerbread house today? Can we make the gingerbread house today?” EVERY DAY until we caved and did it. I had no idea, but apparently my husband is a TOTAL ROOKIE. You don’t buy those things unless you intend to make them that very night. Is he not at all familiar with young children?

So yeah, that “incident” made me laugh. And so many things like that happen every year. We can still have Grandpa call and pretend to be Santa and she totally buys it. She stood on the driveway for a half-hour feeding my husband icicle lights to put up. Then, of course, she wanted to turn them on immediately, but it was the weekend before Thanksgiving, and since my husband is a bit of a Scrooge he won’t even consider turning them on until the weekend after Thanksgiving. But it was the last nice day we were going to have to put up lights, so we had to take advantage of it. At least that’s what I told my husband…

What are your favorite parts of the holiday season? One commenter will win a $10 GC to the ebook retailer of their choice. PLEASE remember to leave your email address so I can actually contact you if you win. ;-)

Oh, and I’ve got a couple of new releases either out or coming soon, including Master Class, a BDSM holiday story! Here’s the blurb:

Ryan Tomasi feels like a failure. His marriage is officially over; the ink dried on the divorce decree. His friend Jack introduces him to BDSM and he agrees to attend a Halloween party at a club. A submissive approaches him, offering herself, and how can he refuse the kneeling beauty? They do a whirlwind scene and Ryan is addicted—both to dominance and to her.

Lisette Rinaldo is returning to the BDSM club for the first time since ending a bad relationship with her former master. She spots Ryan and is taken by the combination of self-assurance and nervousness the man displays as he takes in his surroundings. And after he gives her an incredible re-introduction to the lifestyle, she knows she needs to see the man again.

Ryan and Lisette explore each other and the lifestyle, but what started out as playtime quickly evolves into something more. The problem? Ryan isn’t ready to get serious again and Lisette doesn’t want to fall in love with a guy who can’t give all of himself to her. Both of them are going to have to break out of the bonds holding them back from happiness.

Happy Holidays everybody!


Buy link for Master Class:



Excited children in their Sunday best, diving beneath the Christmas tree in search of their next present is what I think of when I contemplate Christmas.

Children are mercurial little creatures and I was no different. I still remember the agonising wait from 5am (when excitement would wake me up before dawn), until a respectable 7am on Christmas morning which was when we were allowed to open our first present. After that we had to wait until our grandparents arrived. Oh, the anticipation!

My Norwegian husband tells our girls, aged 11 and 7, that he has spared them all that since his culture has the present-opening taking place on Christmas Eve. So, for the sake of a whole twelve hours he can play household hero on December 24th while I prepare the following day’s meal. My sister who lives ten minutes away also married a Norwegian (my husband’s best friend, in fact) so our two families (with 4 kids between us) embrace the two traditions in both our households in the beautiful Macedon Ranges in Victoria, Australia.

We’ve only spent one Christmas in Norway and, yes, it was white! Here in Australia Christmas is usually spent in the heat beneath the gum trees so our first white Christmas was very special. My mother-in-law decorated the living room in my husband’s hometown, Hamar, with hundreds of angels while the children were sleeping, so when they awoke it was a magical moment to see their faces.

Books are always high on the ‘want’ list at Christmas, being a family of writers and readers. Happily, diversity of taste is a family strong point. Last year my 11-year-old was as ecstatic to get the whole Anne of Green Gables series as she was to unwrap The Hunger Games trilogy.

On the subject of books and Christmas, Cressida, the heroine of my last release Lady Lovett’s Little Dilemma, has an increasingly busy Christmas each year as she adds to her nursery. Like her Regency counterparts 200 years ago, she has not the vocabulary or knowledge to have the conversation with her beloved husband as to how to limit their expanding family so as she retreats, physically, he reacts with confusion.

Christmas is, perhaps, the one time she can relax as the focus is not on her but the five children who are allowed to romp beneath the Christmas tree. Poor Cressida. Her journey towards self discovery begins with the shock rumour her husband has found comfort in the arms of his previous mistress leading Cressida to take on the guise of a widow in search of the truth.

This she finds in Mrs Plumb’s House of Ill repute – plus a lot more than she bargained for. During several explorations within the curtained boudoirs where love meets loneliness, Cressida’s latent sensuality is aroused as she learns some surprising things about her husband…and, unexpectedly, about a mystery surrounding a young acquaintance set to make a reluctant marriage to please her ailing mama. It is now that Cressida’s strength of character is tested as she weighs up the risks she must take to secure someone else’s happy ending. It’s a sweet erotic Regency Romance and a complete contrast to my earlier rambunctious erotic Regency, Rake’s Honour.

So, in the spirit of Christmas, I would like to offer one lucky commenter an e-copy of Rake’s Honour. Unlike the characters in Lady Lovett’s Little Dilemma, the hero and heroine of Rake’s Honour – Fanny Brightwell and Felix, Lord Fenton – are fiery and tempestuous. They’re just as well matched as my happily married Lord and Lady Lovett but Fanny is as different from quiet Cressida as is possible and she takes great delight in making Fenton grovel in order to save not just her honour, but his own. Happily, a number of reviewers remarked on an ending that made them ‘laugh out loud!’

Happy Christmas, everyone! I hope it’s a great one!

And if you’d like to find out more about me and my books, here are some links.




Welcome to the Stuff Your Stocking Blogfest! My name is Charity Parkerson, and I am the author of several books, including 12 Amazon best-sellers. I’m not going to bore you with all that, and I’ll post some links at the end so you can go check out my work if you’d like. With Christmas upon us and all that yummy food settling on our hips, some people are already thinking about the dreaded New Year broken promises. Every year we all make resolutions that, at the most, make it through February. I always feel the pressure of making an adult resolution, such as losing weight, paying off some debt, and getting dressed before noon. However, this year it is my goal to make a few resolutions that I might actually stick to. Here is my list:

1.) Catch up on TBR list.
2.) Wear something other than sweat pants to the grocery store at least once a month.
3.) Update my blog.
4.) Remember to get gas before the little light comes on.

Okay, I know that there are a couple on that short list that I won’t stick to, but I’m not even gone lie to myself and claim that I will go to the gym on a regular basis. Now it’s your turn. I would love to hear if you have any resolutions for the New Year that you think you could keep. Don’t be shy and make sure to include your email address in your comment as I will be entering each name to win a few e-copies of one of my books.

About the Author:
Charity Parkerson was born in Tennessee, where she still lives with her husband and two sons. She is the author of several books including twelve Amazon bestsellers. You can like her at Be sure to visit her at and you can read her blog at

Her “Sinners series” was voted one of the top ten best books by an Indie author in 2011- Paranormal Romance Reads
She was named as one of the top three Indie authors of 2012- The Book Connection
She is a member of The Paranormal Romance Guild, is a Goodreads moderator, a member of Coffee Time Romance, and co-host of The Melissa Craig and Charity Parkerson show.

She won author of the week in August of 2011, and is a three-time winner of The Mistress of the Darkpath.

You can follow her on Twitter @

Wednesday, December 19, 2012



What a Lady Wants… a Lady gets


What if what the heroine wants is not good for her? Of for the hero?

What if the two are like poison to each other and bring out the worst in each other?

Or he gives her hives?

What if he is exactly what she needs, but the kind of man her father made her promise she'd stay away from?

If you've always wanted to write an erotic novel but don't know where to start, this is the perfect plot. There's plenty of opportunities for great conflict, and if the heroine is irresistibly drawn to the bad boy hero, you'll find lots of opportunities to write hot sex scenes.
,br> What if the heroine can't please herself and her family? What will she decide to do then?

Okay, let's suppose the hero is her absolute worst choice for a mate, but the heroine's constantly drawn to him, and her thoughts go to him whenever the hero is not around. Can she make it work? your heroine may wonder.

Not if she tries to change him, and not if she expects him to change, but if the heroine loves him, warts and all, she can overlook his faults if the hero has enough good qualities to attract and sustain her love.

No woman wants a doormat for a mate. Give your hero backbone. Let the couple disagree on principle, but lovingly come back together through a little compromise.

Don't make your heroine a barracuda eating her way through life at someone else's expense. A little assertiveness goes a long way. Let your heroine stand up for her beliefs, but refuse to step on someone else's toes when she does.

Men prefer their women soft and yielding. I like to write about a feminine heroine with unshakeable inner strength. Like the early settlers who crossed the prairie in wagon trains, a woman never knows what she'll be called on to bear, and that strength will come in handy if her mate loses his job or becomes disabled and she has to become head of the household. It's all right to set goals and attempt to reach them, but have your characters take time to lend others a helping hand.

In Christmas Eve, my erotic novel Evernight Publishing recently released, Eve Adohr runs a successful real estate company, but her latest relationship just tanked. Casino owner Nick St. Clair fears the women he meets are all barracudas, nipping at his heals to get their hands on his money, so he avoids close relationships until he's snowbound with Eve.

In a blinding snowstorm on Christmas Eve, the jaded owner of a posh Las Vegas casino mistakes the stranded real estate agent at his door for the classy call girl he's expecting to heat up his holiday.

Passions ignite. Eve has learned men believe bedding her the most direct route to her wealth. Nick's female companions always want the keys to his Ferrari and to his safe deposit box, never to his heart, so he distrusts the entire lot and expects to simply walk away unscathed when his brief time with Eve ends.

Neither expects to give marriage a try, but hearts have a way of going where cautious souls refuse, and after screwing their heads off for six days and nights Nick and Eve discover without love their former lives were little more than empty shells.
About the Author:
Flame Arden sounds like a well-bred Southern lady. Nothing could be further from the truth. She claims to write sex scenes with 'squirm factor'. You be the judge as she opens the boudoir door to one-man, one-woman erotic relationships and gives you a glimpse inside. A happy and lasting marriage has prepared Flame to write sizzling love scenes, and she doesn't disappoint, and she's giving away a free download of Christmas Eve to one lucky commenter.

Flame Arden hangs out here:
And you can download Christmas Eve here:
Or from your favorite eBook store



For a chance to win a copy of Lena Loneson’s ebook ALPHA MOUNTIE, leave a comment (plus your email address) answering the question: What’s your favourite holiday carol?

The Eroticism of the Christmas Carol by Lena Loneson

You might be reading the title of this post, scratching your head: What’s more wholesome than the silliness of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer?

But if you’re huddled up near the hot skin of a sexy someone with a fire crackling and a sprig of mistletoe above you, a holiday song can be…stimulating. The spiked eggnog doesn’t hurt the mood.

Here are a few of my favourite Christmas classics:

What are you doing New Year’s Eve?

I was introduced to this 1947 song by Diana Krall’s modern recording. The singer hopes that her crush just might let her “Be the one you choose / Out of the thousand invitations you’ll receive” for a date on New Year’s Eve. There’s something hot about overcoming your fears and taking a risk. This song captures that feeling perfectly.

Baby, it’s Cold Outside

I saw married Canadian singer-songwriters Sarah Slean and Royal Wood perform this duet live, bringing home the sexual tension. Slean joked that it implies dubious consent (“Hey, what’s in this drink?”), but if you take it as plausible deniability on the woman’s part, it’s a fun duet as her date tries to convince her to stay overnight: “I ought to say no, no, sir / Mind if I move a little closer? / At least I'm gonna say that I tried / What's the sense in hurting my pride?”

Back Door Santa

Oh yes, you read that title correctly. It’s a bluesy number from 1968 in which Clarence Carter takes on the Santa role, except he’s not delivering toys to children – he’s delivering orgasms to women. With lines like “I ain’t like the Old Saint Nick / he don’t come but once a year,” Back Door Santa skips over subtle and goes for straight-out naughty. Delicious.

Santa Baby

Santa Baby is the quintessentially suggestive Christmas carol, and Eartha Kitt’s original 1953 version is my favourite, though it’s been covered by Madonna, Miss Piggy, and Taylor Swift. The singer promises Santa she’ll be good (or does she mean bad?) if only he’ll give her a yacht and a convertible.

I’ll Be Home for Christmas

A romantic Christmas carol warms my heart as much as my libido. If I chose a Christmas carol for the heroine of my book ALPHA MOUNTIE, it would be Bing Crosby’s 1943 hit I’ll Be Home for Christmas.

My heroine is a nature girl, more experienced with shotguns and snowshoes than city lights or dance clubs. When her sister’s murdered, Noire meets werewolf RCMP officer Campbell Dawson in Toronto. Their first encounter is in the blustery autumn wind on a ferryboat, where they warm each other with hands and mouths.

Noire and Cam feel out of place in the city, so for the holidays I know they’ll be running home to the woods without stopping for a turkey dinner.

Happy holidays!
Lena Loneson
About the Author:
Lena Loneson hails from Canada, where she’s writing buried under a few feet of snow. This holiday season she’s hoping for plenty of erotic reads in her stocking to keep her warm.

Connect with Lena online:
Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook

When her sister’s body washes up on the shore in Toronto, Noire Pelletier is devastated. She’ll do whatever it takes to find her sister’s killer. Not even the gorgeous Mountie assigned to the case will distract her—for long.

Constable Cam Dawson comes to the city seeking a serial killer, but finds a lot more—a beguiling park ranger who tastes like the wild that runs through his blood. Has he finally met the woman strong enough to embrace his lupine side?

The hunt for a killer leads Noire and Cam on a dangerous and passion-fueled journey deep into the wilderness, where they discover an evil much greater than a simple man. To make it out alive, Noire will have to trust in something stronger than vengeance—love.
Amazon |Barnes & Noble



Spicing Up the Holidays

I love a white hot story and when I get to write one, it’s all the better. Holiday time is a great time for spicy stories. Why? Because it’s already cold and what better a way to warm up than by reading a hot story? You can snuggle under the mistletoe and see where things lead...and all because of a story.

For me, winter means wearing my favorite hoodies. I’m always cold. Always. DH teases me that I’m only warm when I’m covered from head to toe. He’d be right, but don’t tell him that. A thick hoodie and a good book are my recommendations for when the wind whips a little too hard.

Play to Him isn’t a Christmas story, but it’s guaranteed to warm you up. How? Rhiannon and Sebastian have a chemistry that’s off the charts. They don’t just fog the windows on a cold night. Nope. They burn the place down. But that’s how they like it. If things aren’t hot, then they aren’t happy.

Sebastian sells sex toys and furniture for a living. Christmas is his favorite time of year, second only to Valentine’s day. People love buying his wares for their pleasure. For him, it’s a profitable time of year. But he’s lonely. That’s where Rhiannon comes in. She plays the music that stirs his soul and this year, he’s determined to have her in his bed by Christmas.

Do they get together for good and set the sheets on fire? Well, you’ll have to read Play to Him and find out. It will be worth your while.

Now, there’s always something up for grabs in these posts and why not? It’s the holidays and I’m of the opinion it’s better to give rather than receive. So want am I giving away? A bracelet and earring set, that’s what. What do you have to do to get your name in the hat? Simple. Leave a comment, along with your name and email. Simple and you’re in. So go forth and comment and have a happy Christmas.

Here’s a little more about my latest short story, Play to Him:
The key to her freedom is accepting his bonds.

Rhiannon Dubois set out to find her own path in life—with her music, her career and what she wants in the bedroom. No more giving in to get what she wants. She’s making her own rules.

Except with the billionaire playboy she can’t get out of her mind.

Sebastian Chastain knows Rhiannon better than she knows herself. Despite her best efforts to hide her need for submission behind her independent streak, she blossoms when she relinquishes control. He’s got the tools to jumpstart her career and he’s not stopping until she regains her spot in the limelight.

She puts herself in his masterful hands, but can he also convince her to offer her heart?

Reader Advisory: This book contains scenes of bondage and submission, spanking, anal sex, use of toys for maximum pleasure, as well as a leash, collar and nipple clamps.
Available here: About the Author:
I always dreamt of writing the stories in my head. Tall, dark, and handsome heroes are my favorites, as long as he has an independent woman keeping him in line. I earned a BA in education at Kent State University and currently hold a Masters in Education with Nova Southeastern University.

I love NASCAR, romance, books in general, Ohio farmland, dirt racing, and my menagerie of animals. I also write under the pen name of Megan Slayer. I’m published with Total-E-Bound, Changeling Press, Liquid Silver Books, Turquoise Morning Press, Decadent Publishing and The Wild Rose Press. Come join me for this fantastic journey!

If you like my work, tell your friends and email me. I love hearing from readers!

Want to find me? Here are my links:

Fan page:



One of the things I love about writing Christmas stories is the lack of stress on my part. I don’t have to worry that these packages won’t be in the mail on time or worse that the recipients won’t like what I’ve chosen. My characters are the ones who need to get those cards selected, addressed, stamped, and to the post office. In addition, it costs me nothing, at least if you don’t count the blood, sweat, and tears it takes to come up with the ideas for cards, gifts, and of course the food.

In Forever, Book 3 of my Spy vs. Spook series, (I’ll be giving away a free e-book of this novel) the penultimate chapter is My Christmas Always, and it touches on all these things.

Mark Vincent, spy extraordinaire, talks about the cards he’s gotten. The Boss (and yeah, it’s in caps *g*) gives him a simple white card with a cardinal on a pine branch in the upper middle. Included is Mark’s bonus, along with the notice that he’s now Director of Interior Affairs. Granger (the cross-dressing spy) sends him one that shows Santa with his red trousers down around his ankles, his coat covering the important bits, and a big grin, with the words Oral sex is always a great last-minute gift. Matheson and Theo (the agent who works under him and his former landlord) send a card with Santa and his sleigh hanging off an outhouse, and Santa yelling, “I said the Schmidt house, goddammit!” (I actually have that card. *cough*)

There are lots more cards, from Quinton Mann, Mark’s lover, from Portia, Quinn’s mother, from Mark’s family, and other people he knows and cares about. (and shhh. You didn’t hear me say anything about him doing anything so sappy!) But let’s get to the gifts.

Mark gives Quinn a 1796 pattern British Light Cavalry saber that belonged to an ancestor who fought with the Duke of Wellington. He surprises Quinn’s mother with a portrait of her, her son, and her deceased husband. For Quinn’s uncle, Mark finds a model kit of the USS Constitution, including brass cannons and a flag with fifteen stars. What’s funny about this is Mark telling Quinn he’s been a little busy and hasn’t been able to do much research. Actually, when I wrote it, Mark was simply going to give Quinn’s uncle some handkerchiefs. *falls down laughing* As for Gregor Novotny, Portia’s chief cook and bottle washer (and her bodyguard), Mark orders a pair of white socks with red lettering on each one: Big Bad Gregor’s Sock, and Big Bad Gregor’s Other Sock. The Boss’s gift is the original pulp magazines with the Edgar Rice Burroughs serial, Under the Moons of Mars, which became the first three John Carter books.

Except for the socks, these are all pricey gifts—I could never find them, let alone afford them. But Mark can, and the people he gives them to love them. Well, not Gregor, but he and Mark have a hate/hate relationship going on. He gives Mark a s’mores mug; it looks like a gigantic marshmallow with chocolate chips for eyes and a graham cracker for a nose.

Now for a quick look at their Christmas dinner: rack of lamb with a mustard, breadcrumbs, and herb topping, orzo with olives and pepper sauce, roasted asparagus, roasted potatoes with rosemary, and steamed broccoli. And for dessert (supplied by Mark, of course)—drum roll, please!—a Chocolate Orgasm, from Rosie’s Bakery in Cambridge, MA. (And if you ever have the opportunity to try it, I highly recommend it!)

I didn’t mention the Christmas tree, did I? It’s a live one, ten feet tall (who’s got a ceiling that can accommodate it?), blue spruce, Douglas-fir, or whatever grabs my fancy. Guess who won’t have to vacuum up the dried needles when it comes time to take it down? Yep.

Let me tell you, gentle reader—this was one of the best Christmases I’ve ever had.

And I think Mark would agree with that.

About the Author: Tinnean has been writing since the third grade, where she was inspired to try her hand at epic poetry. Fortunately, that epic poem didn't survive the passage of time; however, her love of writing not only survived but thrived, and in high school she became a member of the magazine staff, where she contributed a number of stories.

It was with the advent of the family's second computer—the first intimidated everyone—that her writing took off, enhanced in part by fanfiction, but mostly by the wonder that is copy and paste. While involved in fandom, she was nominated for both Rerun and Light My Fire Awards. Now she concentrates on her original characters.

A New Yorker at heart, she resides in southwest Florida with her husband and two computers.

Ernest Hemingway's words reflect Tinnean's devotion to her craft: "Once writing has become your major vice and greatest pleasure, only death can stop it."

She can be contacted at

Find the author online at

Website: www.fl5/tinnssinns/Welcome1.html
Live Journal:
Buy link:



The Twelve Nights of ChristmasBy Sara Jay

I had a chat with Santa’s Lady—Lady C, as she calls herself in Dom mode—last Christmas and all I could do was shake my head. That poor woman.

It’s not like she asked for much. A new pair of stilettos and some green sprinkles certainly don’t sound like much to me. But her man claims he was beyond busy at work, as usual, and forgot.

He felt so bad that he was willing to do anything. Anything. And that naked sleigh ride he gave her with all of that “naughty list” business just didn’t cut it.

So I talked to the big guy, and boy does Lady C have a surprise coming! After the plan ol’ Nick and I cooked up, she’s going to be one happy elf wife this year. In fact, I have a feeling she’ll be singing this song…

On the twelfth night of Christmas, my true love gave to me:
Twelve elves a-stripping
Eleven plugs a-plugging
Ten lords a-licking
Nine crops a-cropping
Eight maids so milky
Seven floggers flogging
Six fuzzy handcuffs
Five nipple rings!
Four studded collars
Three French kisses
Two black stilettos
And some oral action underneath the tree.

You are so welcome, my friend.

And don’t worry; I’ve got the sprinkles covered. I’ll send them along with a copy of my new ménage book. Maybe she can make him read it out loud while she plays with her Christmas goodies. He’ll beg her to get him off while he stutters over the three bikers taking on my faery, and she can just smile as she cums in front of him.

She waited this long.

Let him watch and wait for once.

Reply to this post with what you think Lady C ought to do with one—or more—of her gifts this year and I’ll give one lucky commenter a free copy of my book Nobody Rides for Free. Of course, what you do with it is up to you…

About the Author: Sara Jay is an author at Changeling Press. Lucky for her, her day job is also full-time freelance writing. She likes fruity drinks, karaoke, and gargoyle abs. Her Changeling Spring Fling Award-winning ménage eBook Nobody Rides for Free is available now. Find Sara online at her website, Facebook, and Twitter.



Merry Christmas! 

Or 'Frohe Weinachten', if I go back to my German roots. Growing up with my Gran in Germany, Christmas was a magical time. We never had much money, but somehow that never seemed to matter, because my Gran, Lord rest her soul, always made Christmas the most magical time, and somehow I always got the presents I wanted.

I have no idea how she did it, or where she hid them for that matter, but I still recall the excitement and child-like wonder of those times. It always started with the arrival of the Christmas Market. Now, if you've never been to a Christmas Market in Germany, then you really need to check it out. Living in England now I really miss the Markets. You'll find one in every big town in Germany come Christmas, and the smells, and the hustle and bustle of it all, always sent little old me into an excited frenzy. I used to walk through the market every day after school, and spent my pocket money on roasted and glaciered goodies, and pick the odd Christmas knick knack up too. Happy Days!

When I came home the house would be filled with more delicious smells, because my Gran used to bake enough Christmas cookies to feed a small army, until finally Christmas Eve was here. We'd put up the tree and decorations and then six pm on the dot, in the living room I hadn't been allowed to enter for the last few hours, there would a tingle of bells, and wouldn't you know it, Santa had been.

Like I said, to this day I do not know how she did it. We'd sing some Christmas Carols and then finally I would be allowed to open my presents. One of the best bits was always the colourful Christmas plate (no stockings here) that would hold, fruit, chocolates, and nuts, we would only have at Christmas time.

And of course the presents. Santa always did know how to fulfil my wishes :-)

For the purposes of my story "Santa's Beard", part of Evernight Publishing's Vanilla-Free Christmas Anthology, there is a decidedly naughty Santa at work.

When Santa strokes his beard wishes are granted - apparently. Joanna is not convinced, but when she wakes up on Christmas morning to find her cats have magically morphed into two naked and dominant men, she doesn't know what to think anymore. All she can do is ride the waves of sensation, as all her kinky desires come true. Can fantasy stand up in reality, or was it all just a dream?
Vanilla Free Christmas is available now from Evernight Publishing and all good e-retailers


Tell me about your Christmas memories in the comments and one lucky commenter will win a copy of this sizzling hot Anthology, guaranteed to keep you warm on those cold winter nights.

Have a blessed festive season all of you!

About the Author:
Glutton for punishment would be a good description for Doris... at least that's what she hears on an almost daily basis when people find out that she has a brood of nine children, ranging from adult to toddler and lives happily in a far too small house, cluttered with children, pets, dust bunnies, and one very understanding and supportive husband. Domestic goddess she is not.

There is always something better to do after all, like working on the latest manuscript and trying not to scare the locals even more than usual by talking out loud to the voices in her head. Her characters tend to be pretty insistent to get their stories told, and you will find Doris burning the midnight oil on a regular basis. Only time to get any peace and quiet and besides, sleep is for wimps.

She likes to spin sensual, sassy, and sexy tales involving alpha heroes to die for, and heroines who give as good as they get. From contemporary to paranormal, BDSM to F/F, and Ménage, haunting love stories are guaranteed.

Find Doris on the web here:


Tuesday, December 18, 2012



There's something rather nice about winter. Even though I'm a sun lover, life is somewhat shall we say less adventurous when you can't shut the curtains. Unless you're an exhibitionist, and I'm not. So when I got the chance to take part in the Stuff Your Stocking Blogfest, and I could blog about winter…well…it all fitted in.

As an erotic romance writer, those words…stuff and stockings conjure up so many pictures. Okay yes, I have a murky mind. Hey, I write erotic, it's needed. Well not murky exactly more full of erotic and arousing ideas, with hot bods and even hotter scenes flitting through it.

And if I can take a comfy sofa, a log fire, candles flickering on the mantle piece, and soft seductive music playing in the background, my mind goes into overdrive.

Think sheer black stockings, with black lacy tops to them, covering long legs and held up with a suspender belt (a garter belt to those of you across the pond. I'm in Scotland where its -6 degrees C and we have snow.) Because the fire is alight, what else is needed? She's got her love ( r ) to keep her warm.

He's admiring the way those stocking are --ahem-- stuffed. Not only that, his cock is primed and ready to do some more stuffing (sorry not a very romantic way to describe just what he wants to do, but I had to get the words in somehow).

So to get back to our scene. Outside its cold, frosty, icy, maybe there's even snow. No, I'm refusing to believe it's raining… this is erotic romance, not everyday life. Dammit if I'm having hot sexy thoughts, then rain in winter doesn't have a look in. There's got to be a nice soft rug in front of the hearth and maybe a low table with some toys on it.

Very slowly he peels the stockings down her legs…Hmm now what to do with them? Oh my…my pulse is racing…

Can you tell why I like winter?

Of course mulled wine, hot chocolate, hot man to snuggle up against and Christmas play some itty-bitty part as well.

Even with all this, I do give a sight of relief when the warm weather comes around again. It's sooo much easier to do so any --er-- different things without all those layers of clothes on now isn't it? (And think of the savings on the heating bills.)

If you'd like to comment on what you like or dislike about winter, I'm going to choose, at random two winners to win an ecopy of any book from my backlist. You can find out about them, and me, at or and and also@RavenMcAllan on Twitter. All my books are available from either or and Amazon, Allromance ebooks, and Bookstrand.

Happy winter and may all your stockings be filled to your perfection.

Love R x

About the Author:Raven lives in Scotland, along with her husband and their two cats—their children having flown the nest—surrounded by beautiful scenery, which inspires a lot of the settings in her books.

She is used to sharing her life with the occasional deer, red squirrel, and lost tourist, to say nothing of the scourge of Scotland—the midge.

Her very understanding, and long-suffering DH, is used to his questions unanswered, the dust bunnies greeting him as he walks through the door, and rescuing burned offerings from the Aga. (And passing her a glass of wine as she types furiously.)