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Monthly Archives: March 2012

A World Apart 

Camelia Miron Skiba’s hero, Major David Hunt in A World Apart, is the interviewee today. Let’s meet this fascinating character!

Tell us about the main character in your current book. What is he like?
Major David Hunt is a trauma surgeon for the US Air Force deployed to the Black Sea during the Iraq Invasion. His traits—service to God and country, sacrifice, professionalism, honor, courage, heroism, and compassion—epitomize our image of the American soldier. Yet, David is not infallible; he’s stubborn, uncommunicative, and by-the-book to a fault.
If your main character was here today, what would he say is his strongest point?
Patriotism. Impeccable career as a fourth generation soldier and using his talent as a distinguished trauma surgeon to serve his country.
Does he think he has a weakness? (If so, what does he think it is? What does his lover think it is? What does his enemy think it is?)
He’s weakness is clouded judgment caused by … Romanian Lt. Cassandra Toma trauma surgeon in the Romanian National Army. She’s deployed at the same military base as David. He’s unable to resist her even when she breaks military procedures and is more stubborn than “the mother of all mules.” Cassandra hates judgmental, arrogant, and rigid people, qualities she believes David embodies. He has no enemies.
What drives your hero to do the things he does? What makes him want to be the “good guy?”
David is driven by his sense of honor and his duty as a soldier and as a doctor. His priorities are saving lives and keeping Cassandra safe at all costs. In doing so he becomes a controlling nut, butting heads with her, which drives them apart.
What’s your main character’s favorite guilty pleasure?
Music—the thing that frees him from his leadership responsibilities if only for a short time. That and his love of Cassandra, which drives him to take actions that he never could have foreseen in himself.
Answered as Major David Hunt
If you didn’t know how old you were how old would you be?
I feel as if I lived many lives. War takes you to a different dimension, where life measures in fleeting moments, priceless in saving one’s life. In the time that stretches between incoming casualties I feel old. When the Blackhawks are on approach and the adrenalin is kicking, I feel 18.
If money were not an object, where would you most like to live?
As an active officer I’ll live wherever my country needs me.
What song would best describe your life?
Bon Jovi’s “It’s My Life.”
If you were a tool, what would people use you to do?
A scalpel–precise, wielded with skill, it’s confident and serves a specific purpose.
Tell us an embarrassing story that has to do with a pet. If you have no pets, a story about a significant other will do. ^_^
English is Cassandra’s second language. She’s actually cute saying something when she actually means something else. Once she told me to write her off instead of write her up. She calls jerky beef instead of beef jerky.
If you came with a warning label, what would it say?
Just do it! Take no shit. Handle with care. Fragile. Hot to the touch. Keep out of reach of children. For adult use only. Store in a dry place. Harmful if swallowed. Refrigerate after opening. Can’t touch this. Hammer time. Do what I say, not what I do. I’m too sexy for this shirt. If you don’t know where you are, you don’t belong here. Carpe Diem!

About the Author

I Write. I Love. I Dream. I Write.
I’m Chris’ wife, Patrick’s mom and Bella’s owner. During the day, I’m the assistant to the Director at SESE at Arizona State University, and romance’s slave at night.
I moved to the U.S eight years ago, following my heart and the man who stole it. I love comedies, historical dramas and happily-ever-after stories. English is not my native, not my second, but my third language.
Camelia M. Skiba
Some fun facts about me:
Each year I participate in one big event that requires me to physically train. My biggest sportive accomplishment was the 3-day 60-mile Susan G. Komen Walk.
Annually I pick a color I decree my favorite (this year it’s salmon).
I refused to text until 2010, always preferring to hear voices rather than sending emotionless messages. Politics bore me to death and I have no tolerance for arrogance.
“A World Apart” is my second book. My debut novel “Hidden Heart” came out March 2011.
Fill in the Blanks
I love pizza with ham or bacon.
I’m always ready for a comedy.
When I’m alone, I write.
You’d never be able to tell, but I’m actually shy.
If I had a halo it would be a rainbow.
If I could clone my dog I’d do it.
I can never be drunk because I don’t drink.

About the Book

In a war that’s not hers, she loses everything.
Everything she loses is because of him.
Forgiveness is not an option.
Or maybe…
Lieutenant Cassandra Toma, trauma surgeon in the Romanian National Army starts her deployment at a joint-unit air base on a wrong foot, clashing on her first day with her new commander, Major David Hunt. Her rebellious nature and sassiness rival her excellent performance in the operating room—the only reason why she’s not reprimanded, or maybe not the only reason.
They meet. They clash. A forbidden passion consumes them with the intensity of an erupting volcano, leaving her heartbroken and him with tarnished honor and pride as an officer. The only way out for David is disappearing into the dangerous warzone in Iraq. Their flame was supposed to be over when destiny brings them back under the same roof, this time with a common goal—to find Cassandra’s brother, Maj. Robert Toma, kidnapped by insurgents while on patrol.
To rescue Robert, Cassandra and David put aside their resentments, uniting forces against a common enemy. Trying to forget the painful past, Cassandra opens up to give David—and their love—another chance. What she doesn’t realize is that her anguish is the result of David’s impetuous action—one reckless choice he made for which she may never forgive him.
His mistake, his secret, could cost them both the love they’ve finally found. 


Sunset Seduction.
C. R., Welcome to Romance Lives Forever! What did you learn from writing your first book?
I was in a novel writing workshop when I was writing my first book so I learned all the basics of building a story, how to write in an active voice and how to clean up the manuscript. I also learned how to have faith in myself and set writing goals.
Would you consider self-publishing?
Yes. I actually have a number of books that were released back to me. I am planning on re-releasing them myself. There are two I’m hoping will be available by the end of April, but latest by mid-May.
How many hours a day do you spend writing?
It depends on where I’m at on a project. I shoot for at least an hour a day.
How do you balance a life outside of writing with deadlines and writing muses?
I make lists of things I have to do to help prioritize what needs to be done. I have a small notebook for this purpose, and whenever I think of something that I’ll need to do, I write it down in the notebook and as I do the tasks, I cross them off. I also keep another to-do list in Tasks in Outlook along with the calendar. I also tend to do a lot of my writing at night so I can get other things done during the day.
Is your muse demanding?
Oh boy, he sure can be at times, especially if I’m on deadline for one project and he gets an idea in his head for another one. He keeps at me to work on the new stuff and I have to remind him that we have to finish one thing before doing anything else or else we won’t get anything done.
What is the craziest thing you did as a kid, and would it ever end up in a book?
I don’t know if I should mention the instances. Don’t want to get in trouble! LOL! ;) But, yes, it’s possible that the situations will end up in my books.
What are some jobs you’ve had that would end up in a book?
Real Estate agent, massage therapist, office admin
Fill in the blank:
If I had a halo it would be dangling from a horn.

Follow C.R. Moss

About Sunset Desires

A blind date. A hot tropical evening. She’ll be someone he can’t forget. He’ll fulfill her ultimate fantasy.

Gwendolyn Tramonto is stunned to learn her cousin set her up with sex on the beach and it’s not the drink. But after a several year dry spell of no relationships, no dates…no sex, Gwen decides to take her cousin up on her offer and go out on the blind date. For once, she’d like to indulge in a fantasy, be wined and dined instead of the other way around, and if she and the man ended up in bed together, that would be a nice bonus.

Evan Cadell is looking forward to the date his uncle arranged for him through an exclusive matchmaking service and taking a one night break from work, life and all its demands. From Gwen’s profile, Evan knows what her fantasy is and believes he’s the man who can make it come true.
But will one night in paradise be enough to satisfy their desires?
Genre: Contemporary, erotic romance, chick-lit
Book heat level: R

Paranormal Elements, A Subtle Shade of Supernatural
by Mary Wilson, publisher Pink Petal Books.
Paranormal Elements might not be an established sub-category of contemporary romance, but it has a long history under different names. When there’s the hint that something is watching in the darkness, though the revelation shows it to be nothing, or maybe a creature wild and untamed, yet completely, totally normal, that’s paranormal elements. When a house seems to take on a life of its own, yet nothing untoward happens, there you will find paranormal elements. In the gothic romances of yester-year and in the romantic suspense where things don’t seem to be quite what they really are, paranormal elements are at play.
As an editor and publisher, when I think of paranormal elements, there are always questions left unanswered. Was he a shifter, really, or is that just my overactive fantasy-reading imagination shining through? Could a ghost have inhabited the house, even though they saw nothing, or did the characters simply have an overactive mind? Paranormal elements make you think about a story, but in a gripping, page-turning, “I’m not too sure about this” sort of way.
The great thing about paranormal elements is that while we most commonly see them in contemporary books, such as our release this month, Wolf’s Storm by Vonna Harper, they can appear anywhere, even in science fiction or fantasy. A historical book, for example, where there might be a curse upon a mirror that’s a family legend, though the reader, and the characters aren’t quite sure the curse exists, would possibly contain paranormal elements. As long as the characters think something supernatural is happening, and it appears to be, it falls under this category.
As a reader, one of the best things I find about the hint of paranormal is that it keeps me guessing. I don’t know, and by the end of the book, I’ll spend time thinking about what might be happening, how or why. Since I enjoy fantasy, science fiction, and paranormal books, these supernatural happenings make me feel right at home as a reader. The disbelief is already suspended, and I’m along for a good read.
When it comes to editing and publishing these books, they defy categorization. But, one of the best things about ebooks is that they don’t have to be placed on one shelf, as it were. They can be shelved anywhere they fit, which makes these books fun to explore and fun to find.
Though as paranormal romance readers, we are firmly steeped in the strong traditions of vampires, magic, werewolves, and fantasy creatures, I hope that those same readers will find the paranormal elements just as exciting and just as page-turning. Think of them as just another kind of spice. Sometimes you want just a dash of nutmeg, and sometimes you want just a hint of paranormal in your otherwise contemporary, though no less erotic, romance.

Forced together by a mountain snowstorm and their smashed cars, two loners realize they have no choice but to spend the night together. As soon as the cabin door closes behind them, need takes over. They must have sex, only sex, not a relationship. But the dark wolves watching outside have their own agenda.  
Jake and Sarah want one thing, a night of sex. The wolves surrounding the remote cabin have another agenda.
Genre(s) contemporary with paranormal elements
Assumed Identity.
Before I get started, I would just like to thank Kayelle and the gang for hosting me today and allowing me to take over the blog here for a few hours today. The invite and space is much appreciated and I look forward to chatting it up with the readers here and coming back again soon. I most thoroughly enjoy meeting new people and talking about…what I know.
It’s the great debate lately it seems. Writers are going back and forth constantly on all the social networks, duking it out about some of the oldest and wisest advice I’ve ever been given as an author by other seasoned and intelligent authors…writing what you know.
The most prevalent argument I’ve seen in the great debate is that writing what you know limits one’s ability to tell the story for lack of material. Ummm…I must humbly disagree with that. For a few reasons, the first being you have a lifetime of experience to draw on for material. Unless you’ve sequestered yourself and lived as a hermit, you have more material to draw from than you can probably shake a stick at. Actually, if I were to be brutally honest here—and as is my way occasionally I will admit—saying your stories would be limited in content for lack of material if you wrote what you knew is in my opinion a bit self-degrading. Are you saying you know so little you can’t draw from your knowledge base? Please, please, writers don’t do that to yourselves. Give yourselves more credit than that.
I’ll help…let’s make a list of common life occurrences we can draw from and I’ll share a list of my perhaps uncommon life occurrences and maybe you’ll begin to see that writing what you know can be so easy if you just let it be. Here goes. Common life occurrences: being bullied (who hasn’t been?), lived through puberty, dated the worst guy possible, dated the best guy possible, dated the worst girl possible, dated the best girl possible, visited a zoo, visited a museum, visited a circus, have been out to dinner, have attended at least one formal function, graduated—in some cases more than once—from some institution or other, had child or two or a dozen, married, divorced, bought a house, drank at least one alcoholic drink and probably before you were of age, lost your virginity, survived the first kiss, gone bowling, played a musical instrument, been to a concert, hated yourself the next day, looked in the mirror and wondered who the hell was looking back…
Any of that ring a bell? 
Now here are a few of my uncommon experiences at least in my opinion: lived in Okinawa, Japan, lived in four states in less than ten years, possessed driver’s licenses in five states and an overseas driving permit, filed taxes federally and in three states in one year—yes it was a nightmare, tried SCUBA and chickened out before the final test, slept in the floor of the Seattle airport overnight waiting for a transport overseas—most uncomfortable, accidentally ate horse meat thanks to a “friend” who thought it was quite amusing…
You see writing what you know doesn’t mean you need to be a brain surgeon. It means you need to be human with human experiences to draw from. Which brings me to another reason I disagree with the assessment that to write what we know would be limiting our material. How many of us are brain surgeons? **cue crickets** That’s what I thought…me either. I’m a military wife in case you hadn’t already figured that out from my uncommon experiences list. J So how does one write a brain surgeon if one is not?
It’s so simple…research. Then you know. Writing is a learning experience as much as it is providing entertainment for others. Don’t let what your know limit what you write because you can expand your what you know list every single day through research and living—which requires writers to leave their chairs and leave the confines of their homes, which I do often and enjoy it immensely…but that’s a post for another day.

About Lila Munro

 Lila currently resides on the coast of North Carolina with her husband and their two four-legged kids. She’s a military wife with an empty nest and takes much of her inspiration for her heroes from the marines she’s lived around for the past fifteen years. Coining the term realmantica, she strives to produce quality romance in a realistic setting. Her genre of choice is contemporary romance that spans everything from the sensual to BDSM and ménage. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading everything she can get her hands on, trips to the museum and aquarium, taking field research trips, and soaking up the sun on the nearby beaches. Her works include The Executive Officer’s Wife, Bound By Trust, Destiny’s Fire, Salvation, Three for Keeps, the Force Recon series, the Slower Lower series, and the Identity series. She’s a member in good standing of RWA and Passionate Ink. Currently she’s working on sequels to several series to be released throughout 2012. And has a brand new line scheduled for winter 2012-13. Ms. Munro loves to hear from her readers and can be contacted via her website or through Facebook at 

Earthly Concerns. 
Welcome back to Romance Lives Forever, Xavier! Tell us about the main character in your current book. What is he like?
Anson the main character in Earthly Concerns, is sensitive, he is very intuitive and gifted with the ability to see beyond the world around him. Unfortunately, this gift seldom works on his behalf. He is flawed in that he loves passionately and is confused by anyone who is incapable of true love.
If your main character were here today, what would he say is his strongest point?
Anson’s ability and willingness to help and forgive those who have hurt him and caused him heartache is remarkable. I envy him.
Does he think he has a weakness? (If so, what does he think it is? What does his lover think it is? What does his enemy think it is?)
Yes! He thinks he has a weakness! His need to find love and be loved blinds him to the damage caused by those he is seeking love from, causing him much emotional distress and pain. I would think his lover in this story thinks Anson’s weakness is his ability to love selflessly.
What drives your hero to do the things he does? What makes him want to be the “good guy?”
Anson is motivated to help Barrett find his missing child for two reasons; he swore an oath to always help someone with his gift if he could and second, he truly believes in Barrett, he believes there is good inside of the man who has hurt him.
What’s your main character’s favorite guilty pleasure?
Barrett is definitely Anson’s guilty pleasure.
If you didn’t know how old you were how old would you be?
As a child, what was your favorite thing about school?
Nap time.
If you came with a warning label, what would it say?
Careful! Contents are hot!

About the Author

Xavier Axelson is a writer and columnist living in Los Angeles. His columns include interviews with counterculture celebrities, artisans, singers, writers, performance artists, politicians, and activists. While his writing has been called, “raw, dirty, and absolutely beautiful,” Xavier hopes to push boundaries of what is expected in the M/M erotic genres.


Christmas Eve at The Powers That Be Café
A Valentine for Evrain (Part of the Never Say Never Anthology)
Dutch’s Boy
The Incident
The Birches
Earthly Concerns
Menage (Print Collection)

Please Fill in the Blanks

I love pizza with meatballs.
I’m always ready for meatballs.
When I’m alone, I eat meatballs.
You’d never be able to tell, but I love meatballs.
If I had a halo it would be made of meatballs.

Find Xavier Axelson Here


Outlantacon 2012. 

Outlantacon is the Southeast’s Premiere Event for Queer Nerds. I’m pleased to introduce the guests for the upcoming convention here on Romance Lives Forever.

I’ll be a guest myself. This will be my fourth year with the con. Kiernan Kelly and I were two of the guest authors the first year, and we’ve been back every year since. This year, I’ll be interviewing as many as possible, and posting them here.

Here’s where to find more info.
Here is the beginning of the schedule.

Uncanny X-Men

We are currently assembling our guest list for our 2012 show. Below are the guests who are confirmed so far. More will be added so watch this space!

  • Lee Martindale author, editor, musician
  • Eugie Foster — Nebula Award-winning author
  • Andrew Greenberg — game designer
  • Kayelle Allen — author
  • Kiernan Kelly — author
  • Sabrina Pandora — entertainer
  • Michael Liebmann — voice actor
  • Angelia Sparrow — author, librarian
  • Moxie MagnusStar Trek drag performer
  • Jevocas “Java” Green — actor / filmmaker
  • Eric Green — actor / filmmaker
  • Tony Gowell — actor (The Walking Dead, Zombieland), casting assistant
  • Hushicho — webcomics creator
  • Kage Alan — author
  • T. C. Blue — author
  • Shae Conner — author
  • Shawn Sellers — paranormal investigator, author
  • Paul Bright — Filmmaker

Check out the video trailer for Altitude Falling (Paul Bright). The film will be shown at the con, and he’ll be screening his brand new film, Goliad Uprising.

Currently, I have interviews for several of these folks, and can’t wait to share them with you. Join us on the con’s Facebook page. Tomorrow is Paul Bright’s day, so bookmark this page and come back!

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