Sunday, October 13, 2013

First Lines: Jennie Jones

Today's visitor is my soul-sister from Australia!

Jennie Jones

PictureJennie Jones is hard at work on The House at the Bottom of the Hill, a sequel to her Escape Publishing hit The House on Burra Burra Lane. I can't wait to read the next book about Swallow's Fall!

Jennie's favorite first lines comes from Sara Donati's Tied to the Tracks:
"Summer in Georgia, sweet and ripe and heavy with heat at a quarter to nine in the morning."

Always one to look under the surface, Jennie's reasoning for this line:
Well, I know from the back cover blurb that this is going to be a modern, grown-up love story and the first line puts me instantly into the ambiance and mood of the setting. It’s a slow morning; there’s a heat wave and everything about this place is welcomed and loved. What can happen to disturb this?

Keep up with Jennie's releases:
Author webpage

Learn more about the plans for Swallow's Fall:
I’m working on a follow up to my debut novel The House on Burra Burra Lane. Book #2 in my rural/country-town series is entitled The House at the Bottom of the Hill and introduces two new characters as the heroine and hero. We renew acquaintance with some of the Swallow’s Fall townspeople from book #1 and discover a few new and slightly eccentric members of newly formed town committee who are about to give the heroine and hero a number of problems they didn’t foresee. 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

First Lines: Kendall Talbot

We've got another Escape Artist joining us today!

Kendall Talbot
Kendall Talbot

Kendall Talbot's first release Lost in Kakadu was released with Escape Publishing earlier this year. She's a true adventurous spirit and it shows in her writing.

Kendall's favorite first line comes from Garvis Graves's book On The Island:
"I was thirty years old when the seaplane T.J. Cullahan and I were traveling on crash-landed in the Indian Ocean."

Why this line, you may ask?
I love survival stories and this sentence gets the story off to a cracking start.

Be sure to check in on Kendall to hear about her adventures and future stories:
Author webpage

If you don't know about Lost in Kakadu:
When a small plane crashes into an ancient Australian wilderness the survivors think they’re lucky to be alive…until rescuers never come. ‘Lost in Kakadu’ is an action adventure novel set in Kakadu National Park where two unlikely people prove just how attractive opposites can be. Fate brought them together, but they’ll need more than luck to escape Kakadu alive. Could the letters of a dead man hold the key to their survival?

Friday, October 11, 2013

First Lines: J.M. Bray

Today's author is an Escape Artist who's going to be making a big splash with his November release!

Inline image 1
J.M. Bray

J.M. Bray's debut release Tearing the Shroud will be available with Escape Publishing on November 1st. It's high fantasy with a twist of romance, and some wicked twists that will keep you on your seat.

His favorite first line comes from William Goldman's classic The Princess Bride:
"This is my favorite book in all the world, though I have never read it."

The reason this is J.M.'s favorite line?
To me, this line is an implied promise. That can be a dangerous thing, and though it isn’t my favorite book of all time, it does deliver an unforgettable story. The sentence made me wonder why. What would make the story so special? As I read it, my mind’s voice extends the words ‘in all the world,’ admittedly it’s also in Peter Falk’s voice. Strange that they changed the line in the movie, isn’t it? In general, I prefer my romances on the sweet side and this feels like the opening of a fairytale, which again, the story delivered.

Keep track of J.M. Bray and his releases:
Author webpage
Author blog

Want to know more about his debut release?
Tearing the Shroud centers around Vincent, a third year college student in San Diego, CA in 1984. Like most young guys, he’s trying to step into adulthood and break away from his parents. He’s even falling in love for the first time…then he starts to have visions. They warn of a coming evil from an unseen Realm. He can try to stop it entering his world, but only by letting a warrior’s spirit from that Realm possess him.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

First Lines: Stefanie London

Today's guest is a newly published author and another up-and-comer!

Stephanie London

Stefanie London's first published erotic short story will be coming out in an anthology from Cleis Press. She's also hard at work submitting fun, flirty, contemporary romances which you'll probably see on a shelf near you soon!

Her favorite first line is found in Janet Evanovich's One for the Money:
"There are some men who enter a woman's life and screw it up forever. Joseph Morelli did this to me - not forever, but periodically."

As a writer with great voice, it makes sense that that is what she looks for:
I think it really sets up the voice of the main character, Stephanie Plum, and it shows clearly that the relationship between Stephanie and Joseph is not a smooth one. 

Keep up with the whirlwind that is Stefanie's new career:
Author webpage

And here's the news about her newest project:
I’m working on a story about a headstrong ballerina and a commitment-phobic CEO who embark on a fake marriage. It’s a friends to lovers story with lots of spark and sizzle, these two can’t keep their hands off each other! This story is a follow on from my first manuscript, which was about a ballerina and a football player. If you can’t tell, I love writing about dancers. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

First Lines: Sofia Gabel

Today's guest is a busy writer who explores all kinds of stories.

Sofia Gabel

17665307Sofia Gabel's novel Charity's Heart is set in 1888 London, and she's hard at work on its sequel. She writes across genres, so check out her list of published and upcoming works.

Sofia's favorite first lines comes from Nicholas Sparks's Message in a Bottle:
"A cold December wind was blowing and Theresa Osborne crossed her arms as she stared out over the water."

For Sofia, it's all about pacing:
This is the first line of Chapter One and, to me, sets the mood. There is a prologue, but this is where we get our real start to the story.

Keep up with Sofia and her newest releases:
Author webpage
Author blog

Interested in Charity's Heart?
Charity’s Heart, historical romantic suspense taking place in 1888 London, centers around Charity Llewellen, a strong-willed 19-year old who is excited to marry one day, but loses that excitement when her father arranges for her to wed the nasty and deceitful Mathias Baptiste. Charity runs away from home and has an instant dislike for a man she meets, Alexander Sutton. Although Sutton is handsome, his manners are lacking, extremely lacking. With her best friend, Charity plots to get out of her impending marriage, but then becomes tied up with a 20-year old murder, a secret burial and Jack-the-Ripper. She also falls for Alexander, although he keeps pushing her away, since he has a secret of his own. When Mathias becomes enraged with Charity, she soon finds herself alone and at his mercy, but Mathias is not the merciful kind. This is Book One and I’m currently working on the sequel.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

First Lines: Melinda Lane

Today's guest is an up-and-comer you need to be on the watch for!

French Army

Melinda Lane is an unpublished author who's got several projects going (I'm lucky enough to have read them, and let me tell you, I can't wait to see them in print!). She's an entrant of this year's So You Think You Can Write with "The King's Choice," and is also working on a historical based around the French Revolution.

Melinda's favorite first line comes from Lynn Kurland's Stardust of Yesterday:
"Damn you, man!" Kendrick of Artane exclaimed. "Have you no idea who I am?"

Melinda's love of character is responsible for her love of this line:
Rather than a description, you are plunged into the dialogue, the action.  This line says so much about Kendrick, who is actually the hero—the first line of the book, spoken by the hero just sets so much for what follows and what you start out knowing about him.  

Watch for great things to come from Melinda:
Author webpage
So You Think You Can Write

Want to know more about Melinda's French Revolution tale?
Severus Huntington, an English spy in Revolutionary France, is torn between his conscience and his duty as the Reign of Terror begins. Accustomed to his solitary life, he believed relationships were something he could not have. When he comes face-to-face with an Englishwoman in Paris, he finds new purpose and unexpected love.

Catherine Williamson, an Englishwoman stranded by the Revolution, is shocked when a mysterious Frenchman rescues her and returns her to England. Certain she will never see him again, she is shocked when he arrives in London and she soon learns that all is not as it seems.

Monday, October 7, 2013

First Lines: Sarah Daltry

Today I was lucky to bring back another of my writing buddies to join in!

Sarah Daltry has written a variety of books. Her most recent release is Lily of the Valley, a companion novel to her new adult erotic release Forget Me Not. In December, Escape Publishing will be release the first of her Eden's Fall series, titled Bitter Fruits.

Sarah's favorite first line comes from Graham Greene's The End of the Affair.
"A story has no beginning or end; arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which to look ahead."

Sarah's love of this line comes from its depth:
It isn’t just an amazing and tragic love story. This line is simply fantastic. It addresses the idea of perception, the idea that each moment could be the moment that defines us. We always seem to think it’s one particular moment, but really, as Greene says, the choice is arbitrary.

Join Sarah as she prepares for her release date:
Author webpage

Want to know more about Jack's side of the story?
You met them in Forget Me Not. Now, hear Jack’s story. (Although this is from the same series, both novels work as standalone stories.)

Plagued by a dark past, Jack sees college as a way out. Desperate to escape the area where he grew up, the people who know his secrets, and his own family, he deals with his problems through alcohol and sex. 

When he first sees Lily, she’s the epitome of everything he hates. Yet something about her makes Jack rethink everything he knows and assumes about other people. Now, with the help of his best friend and lover, Jack has to decide if he wants to pursue something that he knows will only end badly.

Can Lily be one of the few people who can see Jack for who he really is – or will his darkness be too much for her to handle?   

Sunday, October 6, 2013

First Lines: Ros Baxter

Today's visiting author always brings a party with her.

Ros Baxter
Fish Out Of Water

Ros Baxter's hit Fish Out of Water is the latest release from an author who is always writing. She posts short stories on her website, which is a great way to get your fix as she works on her next book. 

Her favorite quote comes from Anne Tyler's Back When We Were Grownups.
"Once upon a time, there was a woman who discovered she had turned into the wrong person."

As she explains, this is the kind of line that every author aspires to:
I love this line because it has huge emotional punch. Not because it's my favourite book, but because it's my favourite sentiment. Simple words, complex emotion. If I write even one first line that good, I'll be happy.

Stop by to visit Ros and read her shorts:
Author webpage

Haven't heard about Fish Out of Water?
Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum meets Splash in a sexy, smart-talking debut about a mermaid in a desert, a city under water, and the secret that no one is supposed to uncover.

Dirtwater's straight-talking Deputy Sheriff Rania Aqualina has a lot on her plate: a nicotine addiction that's a serious liability for a mermaid, a soldier-of-fortune ex who's hooked on her Mum's brownies, a gorgeous, naked stranger in her shower, and a mysterious dead blonde with a fish tattoo on Main Street.

Heading home to Aegira for a family wedding, Rania has a sinking feeling that's got nothing to do with hydroporting seven miles under the sea and everything to do with the crazy situation. Now, if she can just steal a corpse, get a crazy Aegiran priest off her case, work out who the hell's trying to kill her, and stop sleeping with the fishes, she might be able to unravel the mysteries. And maybe even save her own ass while she's at it.

Fish Out of Water is Stephanie Plum meets Splash, and the first book in a trilogy about Aegira, an underwater kingdom based on the historical Norse legend of Aegir.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

First Lines: Susanne Matthews

My next guest is visiting from Canada and popped in to update us on the madness that is SYTYCW.

Susanne Matthews
Susanne Matthews

ImageSusanne Matthews has written three books: Fire Angel, In Plain Sight, and The Captain's Promise. She is also an entrant in this year's So You Think You Can Write competition with "Just For The Weekend," a fun a flirty romance about a kindergarten teacher who attends a sci-fi convention and finds herself accidentally married to a millionaire who is not what he appears.  

Like one of my earlier guests, Susanne's favorite first line also comes from the classic Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.
Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.

Her explanation of this line's importance ties back to her childhood. 
"Rebecca,  written in 1938, was given to me to read when I was  fifteen. At the time, I’d been captivated by historical novels; I wasn’t sure I wanted to read a Gothic romance. I procrastinated a bit, but sat down and began to read. The minute I did, it aroused my curiosity. The first sentence, nine simple words, drew me right into the story. What or where was Manderley? Was this a good dream or a nightmare? Was it a recurring dream as the use of again suggested, or did the author mean she’d returned to Manderley? As I read on, I wasn’t disappointed. The book lived up to its promise and more.To this day, Rebecca continues to be one of my favorite novels." 

Stop by to visit Susanne and show some love for her SYTYCW entry:
So You Think You Can Write

Curious about Susanne's current projects?
I am currently working on my submission for the So You Think You Can Write 2013 contest with Harlequin. Just For The Weekend is my attempt at a fun and flirty romance. Kindergarten teacher Cassie James craves excitement and fun. Attending a sci-fi convention isn’t what she has in mind; neither is falling in love with a guy she thinks is a male stripper. It’s just for the weekend, right? When she wakes up apparently married, she panics.

Millionaire Sam Mason believes Vegas is the last place to find love. Dressed as an alien, he’s blind-sided by a green-skinned slave girl. One kiss and he’s hooked. A whirlwind courtship leads to an alien-themed wedding chapel, but before he can reveal himself, the bride vanishes. Finding her may be harder than he suspects.

Friday, October 4, 2013

First Lines: Magen McMinimy

I'm thrilled to have this author back to visit!

Magen McMinimy

Magen McMinimy is kept plenty busy with her two series: The Immortal Heart series (she's currently hard at work at Immortal Promise) and her North American Pack series. Her current release from the latter is Primal Calling and is coming out later this month!

Magen's favorite first line comes from Laura Wright's Eternal Captive: Mark of the Vampire #3.
"Her fangs had been inside him only once, and yet they had left an unseen mark on his skin, his blood, even his breath."

Her explanation is one all fangirls understand:
Well, it’s sexy. I love this series and I am obsessed with Lucian, this line is from his POV and again I say sexy. I could think of no better book to choose. I love Laura Wright and so far everything of hers that I’ve read I have fallen in love with. She writes amazing characters and I fall easily for them. Plus this blog is giving me the opportunity to share something from one of my favorite series and authors, so I’ve given you a little Lucian and let me assure you… you want more!

Be sure to keep up with Magen's releases and show her some love; she's incredible!
Author website

Thursday, October 3, 2013

First Lines: Juanita Kees

Today's lovely guest is visiting from Australia, and is one of my fellow Escape Artists.

Juanita Kees
Juanita Kees

Juanita Kees is currently working on Under Cover of Dark, which features characters from her popular Escape Publishing release Under the Hood. Her previously published release Fly Away Peta is still available from Eternal Press.

Juanita's favorite line comes from Loretta Hill's The Girl in Steel-Capped Boots.
We'd like you to go to the Pilbara.

Juanita's love of Australia is clear when she explains why this line is so important:
Immediately I know I’m going on adventure filled with glorious scenery, set against an Australian background. I can lose myself there and allow my senses to take control, become totally immersed in a story full of love for the land and the characters. I’m in for a treat to Aussie humour, rich characters and snappy dialogue.

Be sure to visit Juanita so you can keep up with her releases.
Author webpage
Author services

Want to know more about Under Cover of Dark?
When Mark Johnson continues his investigation into the murder of Tiny Watts and the Under Cover of Dark involvement of the teenage gang, the Tag Raiders, with sleazy lawyer, Gino Bennetti (Under the Hood), the last thing he expects is to be interviewing Gino’s widow. And it seems she’s in a world of trouble.

With her husband’s blood on her hands, Lily Bennetti has her son to protect and secrets that run deeper than the scars she bears. Mark Johnson is the last person she wants uncovering those secrets. Especially the truth about her son Luke’s involvement in Tiny Watts’ murder.

As the investigation continues and Lily’s scars heal, she finds the gorgeous detective easy to trust and the friendship between them blossoms into more. But the secret Lily holds is placing them in very real danger. She stands to lose her son, the man she loves, her freedom and her life.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

First Lines: Elsa Winckler

My next guest is a fellow Escape Artist who is preparing for her first English romance's release.

Elsa Winckler

 Elsa Winckler has been writing and publishing novels in Afrikaans; her first English release is titled Love, In Writing and will be out November 1st from Escape Publishing.   

Elsa's favorite line comes from George Eliot's Middlemarch.
Miss Brooke had that kind of beauty which seems to be thrown into relief by poor dress.

For Elsa, it's all about creating the character: 
"When it comes to giving the reader a clear picture of a character, nobody does it better that George Eliot. With one sentence you know quite a few things about Miss Brooke: she’s beautiful but doesn’t bother to dress according to the latest fashion. That of course tells us that she’s – different to most women of her time and class – not interested in fashion at all. So of course, one immediately wants to know what does interest her? Published in 1871 for the first time, the themes she wrote about are still so relevant."

Be sure to show some support and visit Elsa as she preps for her upcoming release:

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

First Lines: Jane Godman

My first guest is visiting from England where she is quite busy writing up all kinds of delicious historicals.

Jane Godman

Jane Godman is currently hard at work on her a sequel to her first Gothic mystery/romance set for release later this year from Harlequin Shivers. Her other books, The Corsair's Revenge and The Rebel's Promise, are both available now. 

Jane's favorite first line comes from the classic Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.
Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.

When asked to explain why this line resonates with her, she explained, 
"I like the fact that this first line starts the story at its end. It has a hint of mystery - Why is the writer not still at Manderley? Why must she go there only in a dream? - and the instant hook of making me want to read on. And, when I did read on, Daphne du Maurier did not disappoint me. Rebecca remains one of my favourite books in my favourite genre, the traditional gothic with dark secrets, brooding characters and a lush, atmospheric setting."

If you're a fan of the Gothic, and love that lush writing style, be sure to check out Jane's works:

Curious about her current project?
My current project is my third Gothic mystery/romance. My first Gothic (untitled as yet) will be published by Harlequin Shivers later this year and my current work in progress is a sequel to that book. Set in a brooding cliff top castle, the characters are a family with dark secrets and smouldering passions. I love writing for the Shivers line which features the supernatural, without being a paranormal romance, and is high sensuality, without being an erotic romance. I like to call it romance with a dash of horror!