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Fantastic boxed set on offer – from Tracey Alvarez

Due South boxed set – only $0.99 (usual retail price $7.99)

 

If you like heartwarming, sexy and sweet small-town romances with a touch of comedy, you’ll love sharing the journey with these authentic men and women struggling to find their special someone.

The Due South bundle contains the first five books of Tracey Alvarez’s best-selling series set against the stunning backdrop of Aotearoa, New Zealand.

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The first 5 Due South Books (over 1500 pages) included in this bundle are:


In Too Deep (Book #1)
Two hearts. A second chance. Everything on the line…
To save her brother from financial ruin, police diver Piper Harland does the one thing she swore she’d never do—return to the tiny island hometown on Stewart Island where Ryan “West” Westlake crushed her heart. West lost Piper once, but now she’s back for an unexpected six week visit. Maybe he wants her a little bit, but can he fall in love with such a flight risk? Saying goodbye the second time might just destroy them both.

Melting Into You (Book #2)
They’ll either melt or raze their lives to the ground…
Ben Harland is, by his own admission, a bit of a grouch. He doesn’t do soppy chick-flicks and he’s hen-picked enough as it is with his mother and two younger sisters on his case. He sure doesn’t need any more drama in his world. But life has a way of rearing up and biting him in the butt when he least expects it. Cue insta-daddyhood to an eight-year-old girl and an out-of-control attraction to Stewart Island’s hot school teacher, Kezia Murphy. 

Ready To Burn (Book #3) 
Watch the sparks fly as they burn it up in the kitchen…
Shaye Harland desperately wants the role of Due South’s head chef, but the far too sexy Del Westlake muscles in and steals it. A reality TV show plans to feature Del at his estranged father’s restaurant—jump-starting his ruined reputation and career in the States—but will the sparks flying in the kitchen burn his chances of ever becoming Shaye’s Mr. Perfect? 

Christmas With You (Book #4)
The Kiwi barbecue isn’t the only thing sizzling this summer…
Carly Gatlin’s doesn’t want to spend another Christmas alone since her father died the year before. She’s come to Stewart Island in New Zealand to spend the holiday with her stepfamily, though she feels more of a Christmas Grinch than filled with good cheer. Kip Sullivan’s big, boisterous family have also arrived en-masse—someone just shoot him before his match-making relatives get out of control. Kip agrees to make Carly’s first Kiwi Christmas special, but will he gain more than mistletoe kisses from the woman who threatens to claim his heart? 

My Forever Valentine (Book #5) 
Love small town romance and Happily Ever Afters?
Dive into the Due South world to find out what your favourite characters are doing to celebrate Valentine’s Day with these four short and sweet romance stories.
Intended for mature 18+ aged readers.



Praise for the Due South series!


“It’s official…I’m hooked on this series! I want to jump on a plane and fly to this island, because apparently they grow them big and HOT in New Zealand…men that is!!!” ~ Swept Away By Romance

“Perfection comes in many shapes and forms, and Ms Alvarez delivers in her contemporary voice and quirky character traits that make a distinctive difference between average and stellar storytelling.” ~ InD’Tale Magazine

 

On offer at $0.99 until 2 October. Buy it now from:

 

Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | Kobo | Google Play |  Amazon UK

 

Excerpt  – From Ready To Burn

One second Del stood beside her all moody and mysterious, and the next, his hands gripped the railing on either side of her hips. He moved fast–fast enough that she made an embarrassing little eep-ish squawk. Nowhere to go unless she became flexible enough to do a flip over the wooden railing. 

Shaye yanked her hands from her pockets and gave his chest a shove. “Back off.”

Even after she added her sous chef do it now or die glare, he stayed, big and bad and way too close. He continued watching her with dark and unreadable eyes, his nostrils flaring slightly as he breathed. 

Her hands didn’t know what to do. She couldn’t put them back on those two hard pecs, since every single nerve-ending had soaked up the heat burning through Del’s shirt and transmitted swoony, oh yeah sighs into her brain. 

Stupid nerve-endings. Stupid brain.

She wriggled her bottom, so she half sat on the railing, arching away from him. “What are you doing?”

“Showing you the reason.”

The rough timbre of his voice stroked over her. Wickedly dark, decadently rich, scarily addictive. Like chocolate, the quality stuff made of eighty percent pure cacao. 

He leaned forward, his face level with hers. “It’s a compelling reason.”

Shaye’s hand shot out to grip his biceps–that or topple backward–but God, he felt amazing. All hard, sinewy muscle and why the hell couldn’t she unhook her fingers?

Her breathing hitched, high and ragged. “My sister’s a cop, and I know how to defend myself.”

“So, show me your ninja moves.” 

“Daring a cornered woman to hurt you isn’t very bright.”

One of his hands rasped off the wooden railing and touched the end of her ponytail. He selected a strand and stroked it down her jaw. Shaye licked her lips, unable to suck her gaze from his mouth, which angled closer. Close enough that she could tell the flavor of the last handful of potato chips he’d eaten. 

Salt and vinegar. Her favorite.

She strained upward to see if he tasted as good as he smelled…Freaking hell– 

Shaye reared back a little, hair slipping from his fingers, her chin narrowly missing his. “Are you going to kiss me?”

Her heart gave a little bunny-hop at the thought and leaped around her ribs.

“Not unless you ask real nice.” 

“Ask you?” There was that damn smirk of his again. She should’ve guessed he was playing with her. “When pigs fly.”

A muscle ticked in his jaw, but the smile didn’t falter. “Now you’ll have to say, ‘Please, Del. With a cherry on top.’”

“I’d jam that cherry up your nose before I’d kiss you, Hollywood. Get outta my face.”

His gaze dipped once to her mouth then flicked up. “I can’t go anywhere while you’re grabbing onto me.”

 

Copyright © Tracey Alvarez 2014

 

Author links:

Website: http://www.traceyalvarez.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TraceyAlvarezAuthor

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TraceyAlvarezNZ

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/TraceyAlvarez

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/traceyalvarez/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+TraceyAlvarez/posts

Amazon Author page: http://amazon.com/author/traceyalvarez

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/traceyalvareznz/

Newsletter: http://bit.ly/JR3Asu

 

Author Bio:

new-author-photoTracey Alvarez lives in the Coolest Little Capital in the World (a.k.a Wellington, New Zealand). Married to a wonderfully supportive IT guy, she has two teens who would love to be surgically linked to their electronic devices.

Fuelled by copious amounts of coffee, she’s the author of contemporary romantic fiction set predominantly in New Zealand. Small-towns, close communities, and families are a big part of the heart-warming stories she writes. Oh, and hot, down-to-earth heroes—Kiwi men, in other words.

When she’s not writing, thinking about writing, or procrastinating about writing, Tracey can be found with her nose in her e-reader, nibbling on smuggled chocolate bars, or bribing her kids to take over the housework.

Follow Tracey on Twitter as @TraceyAlvrezNZ or Facebook as http://www.facebook.com/TraceyAlvarezAuthor 

Her website is http://www.traceyalvarez.com and don’t forget to sign up to her newsletter here: http://bit.ly/JR3Asu

 

 

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You Have An Ugly Baby! aka Why Writers Need Thick Skins

Silken Sheets & Seduction

sofia1

FACT – writers need thick skins

ugly-babies-everywhere

To a writer, our books are our babies. They often take longer to gestate than real babies, and we are every bit as protective as new mothers. And when it comes to first books, we’re the proverbial roaring lion protecting our words against all comers.

Think about it. Our first book. We spend months creating every aspect of it. The characters, the world building, the plot, the dialogue. We stay up late at night debating whether Jack would really say “divine”, or would he be more likely to say “cool,” before restructuring the sentence completely.

The experts tell us to write what we know, and boy, do we do that with book #1. The pony-crazy, car-loving heroine who could be us, if we were ten years younger and several pounds lighter. We unwittingly pour the pure essence of ourselves into our books, and…

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By sofiagrey1 Posted in News
Pink panties with frill icon. Lady's lingerie.

NO PANTIES ON SALE HERE!

 

Dear reader.

If you found my website in the hope of buying or selling panties (used or otherwise), I’m afraid you’ve come to the wrong place. You want the other Sofia – Sofia GRAY (sofiagray.com).

Check out this link:

http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real-life/wtf/how-netflix-series-orange-is-the-new-black-caused-the-used-panty-trade-to-explode/news-story/96963372675b78de12b45262248eaba7

It was nice seeing you here. If you’re interested in romance novels, stay a while🙂

Sofia

 

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Rock On!

Silken Sheets & Seduction

sofia1

How one music video inspired an entire series

It was late 2007 when I first saw the video for The Pretender, by Foo Fighters. The song played constantly on the radio, and I was already a fan, but the video just about blew me away.

Up to then, Foo Fighters were a take-’em-or-leave-’em band for me. Sure I liked some of their early stuff, but they’d never really been on my radar. Well that changed in around two and a half minutes.

I watched Dave Grohl singing his heart out, and a storyline took shape in my head. I sketched out the character profiles that night.

It took a year and a half, but I wrote the first draft, and made headway on the second book in the series. A year later, I’d drafted a 4-book series. Strong characters, rockers doing what rockers do, and ordinary people getting…

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By sofiagrey1 Posted in News
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Quick Fire Interview with Romance Novelist Lisa M. Owens

Welcome to Lisa M. Owens

I’m thrilled to welcome Lisa M. Owens to my blog today. She kindly agreed to take part in the Quick Fire Interview.

Take it away, Lisa…🙂

 

Quick fire questions:

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Tea or coffee? Tea
Wine or vodka? Vodka
Chocolate or peanuts? Chocolate
Early-bird or night-owl? Night-owl
Desert island or city break? Desert island

 

In depth:

 

1. Where are you now and what can you see out of your window?
I am sitting at my desk and I can see the birds lined up on the fence.

2. Do you write in an office?
I write in my temporary office. I am currently in the process of turning a spare bedroom into an office. Hopefully, it will be completed in the next six months or so.

3. Do you need tidiness or chaos in order to write?
I call my work area “organized chaos.” Everything is scattered but I know exactly where everything is.

4. Any must-haves by your side? Coffee? Special pen?
Framed photographs of my kids. They are my inspiration to be a better version of myself.

5. Do you prefer music / background noise to write with, or silence?
This just depends on how my writing is coming. If the words are flowing easily, I enjoy music softly playing in the background. If the chapter I am working on is not coming along well, I prefer complete silence.

6. Tell us about your main characters and how they meet?
Austin is a Staff Sergeant in the Marine Corps. He meets Trisha, an artist, for the first time three years ago on a flight to Texas. They make small talk, but both of them are attached, so nothing develops. Three years later, Austin is wounded from battle and divorced, and Trisha has broken her engagement. They meet again when Austin accidentally goes into the wrong hotel room.

7. Were they easy to write, or did they make things difficult for you?
Austin was the more challenging of the two. I had to do a lot of research about the military to develop his character. Trisha was easy, she is a reflection of my own personality. She often says what she is thinking and doesn’t filter herself before she blurts it out. I make that same mistake sometimes.

8. Do you plot, or do you pants your way through the writing process?
I always have an original plot. But sometimes the characters take over and it doesn’t go the way I planned it. They seem to have minds of their own about how the story will go.

9. What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever written, published or not?
A play when I was fourteen years old. Looking back, I want to laugh. The plot sucked and the character development was not there at all. But I still have it. I keep thinking it might make a good teenage novel, so I hang onto it.

10. What are you working on now?
I am currently working on my third instalment of my If Only… series. This is Susan Weston’s story and it’s called, And Then…
I am also working on the sequel to this novel, titled, DESTROYED. It is from the perspective of Austin’s buddy, Nick.

 

Thank you, Lisa🙂  Now tell us about your new release.

DAMAGED (More than a Marine #1)

Damaged Ebook CoverFreedom isn’t free.

Staff Sergeant Austin Chandler learned this lesson well. Dealing with the devastating truth that his military career is over, he is discharged from the Marines and returns home from fighting the war in Afghanistan with battle scars he fears will never heal. But the truth is a bitter pill to swallow when he arrives at the airport and realizes his wife has abandoned him when he needed her the most. Broken in body as well as in spirit, Austin suffers not only from the slow-healing scars on his back, but also the wounds that her desertion has left on his troubled heart.

Until a chance encounter with a beautiful artist leaves him wondering if perhaps some things are meant to be. Trisha Morgan has secrets she is desperately wants to hide. With a troubled past and abandonment issues of her own, she fears love only leads to rejection and pain.

But can two wounded souls break through the battered barriers of each other’s hearts?

 

Buy it from: AMAZON

 

Excerpt

Trisha had thought that she would never see him again. Even though he wasn’t hers, he had never been hers; she had always thought of him as her marine.

That airplane flight to Texas had changed her life for the better. It had opened her eyes, in more ways than one. Because of him, she had realized that she had never truly loved Ty and she never would have been good enough for him. Or for his family.

Trisha Morgan had often fantasized about what would happen if she ran across the tall, broad-shouldered, good-looking Marine again. They had had an instant connection, they had both felt it. But since both of them had been attached, nothing more than a new friendship could evolve between the two of them.

Austin Chandler walking in on her while she was as naked as the day she was born was not one of the many scenarios that she had envisioned.

Wet skin. Long legs that seemed to go on forever. Waxed bikini line. Delicately-painted red toenails. Pink-tinged, erect nipples. Large, full breasts still wet from a recent shower. Small droplets of water that he could lick off drop by delicious drop.

She shrieked with surprise, her hands drawing her towel even tighter around her shaking body.

A sudden thought occurred to her.

He wasn’t wearing a ring.

She screamed the sound sharp enough to shatter glass. Wrapping a fluffy, blue towel around her slender body, she paused, apparently not knowing what to say.

When Austin was finally able to raise his eyes from admiring her ass…ets, his dark brown gaze slowly travelled up her perfectly proportioned body before focusing on her flushed, embarrassed face. It was her. The girl from the plane over three years ago.

Their eyes met and time seemed to stand still. This was fate, destiny, kismet.

Trisha stood there trembling. She had imagined this moment for so long, yet when it finally came, it was nothing like she had expected. She had never been one of those girls who hopped into the nearest bed with a complete and total stranger.

But Austin wasn’t a stranger, she struggled to remind herself. She had met him before. He was her hero, her knight in camouflage. He was her marine. She smiled. She wondered how he would feel if she were to confess that little secret to him. Would he be upset or would he be flattered?

A small hint of a smile played on her lips and he dropped his duffel bag onto the ugly, stained orange carpet of the hotel room floor. He had dreamed of this moment, he had longed for it. He had longed for her. On the bed, against the wall, on the tile of the bathroom shower stall, any way he could have her.

 

About Lisa M. Owens

The writing bug bit Lisa M. Owens at an early age; she was writing short stories and poetry by the age of seven. At the age of eight, she entered a writing contest at her elementary school. About fifty books were written, but Lisa was one of the thirteen writers chosen who received a certificate and the chance to meet Oklahoma writer Sandy Miller.

A former victim of domestic violence herself, Lisa worked at the courthouse for over seven years. Almost three of those years she worked on the Marriage License/ Protective Order desk. She helped women file protective orders and worked closely with the staff and counselors at DVIS.

Frustrated with books that merely gloss over the subject of domestic violence, Lisa wanted to write a book that told the entire story. Her dream is for her words to help give someone the courage to leave an abusive relationship.

She resides in Oklahoma and has two children. This is her third published novel, and she is currently working on the second novel of this series. She is currently working on her fourth novel. Lisa enjoys hearing from her readers and can be reached at P.O. Box 9643, Tulsa, OK 74157-0643, or by e-mail, lisamowens@ymail.com. She can also be contacted on her website, http://www.lmowens.co./

Contact links:

http://www.lmowens.co/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lisa-M-Owens-Author-Page/401065116637549

https://twitter.com/_lisamowens

banana

Sasha’s Ultimate Hangover Remedy

Another book-inspired recipe.

In A HANDFUL OF WOLF, Sasha makes his hangover remedy for Megan. It consists of a bacon sandwich and a smoothie. Here’s how he makes it.

Bacon Sarnie a la Sasha

bacon sarnie

Ingredients (serves 2)

A little olive, rapeseed or sunflower oil

6–8 rashers of streaky bacon

Butter for spreading

4 slices of toasted brown bread

1 large, ripe avocado

1 or 2 ripe tomatoes

Freshly ground black pepper

 Method

1 Heat a large frying pan over a medium-high heat and add a scant trickle of oil. Add the bacon and cook for a few minutes on each side, until crispy. Drain on crumpled kitchen paper.

2 Roughly mash the avocado flesh, and add a shake of pepper.

3 Slice the tomato thinly

4 Assemble the sandwich: spread the avocado on the toast, top with slices of tomato, rashers of bacon, and final slice of toast.

Enjoy!

 

Banana & Peanut Butter Smoothie

peanut butter smoothie1/2 cup low-fat plain or vanilla yogurt.

1 medium banana, quartered.

2 tablespoons (smooth) peanut butter.

1 1/2 tablespoons honey.

1/2 cup milk.

Blend together until smooth. Enjoy!

 

It’s official!

P.S. It’s not only Sasha who believes in the hangover-healing properties of the bacon sandwich. A group of students from Newcastle University conducted an official study into it: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/5118283/Bacon-sandwich-really-does-cure-a-hangover.html

 

Excerpt from A HANDFUL OF WOLF

Megan hesitated and then fiddled with her hair. “I didn’t feel like eating.”

“Give me ten minutes and I’ll whip up my patented hangover remedy for you.” He knew his way round the contents of the fridge and larder. He was confident he could feed her. “If it doesn’t work you can claim a forfeit.”

Amusement sparked in her eyes. “And what would that be? A kiss? You’re totally transparent, Sasha.”

He held the roses to his chest and adopted a wounded look. “That’s harsh. I was thinking you could ask me anything, and I’d answer. Anything at all.”

“The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?”

“Sure you’re not a lawyer?” He could tell her bad mood was lifting and knew he had to capitalize on it. “It’s a deal.”

Fifteen minutes later, Megan sat at the heavy scrubbed pine table in the kitchen, sipping a banana smoothie, while Sasha fried bacon and assembled a club sandwich with sliced tomato and avocado on toasted wholegrain bread. Thankfully they hadn’t been disturbed and he had her entire attention.

“This smoothie is divine. What did you put in it?”

He flashed her a smile over his shoulder. “Banana, yoghurt, honey and milk. And a spoonful of peanut butter. The bananas and yoghurt will settle your stomach while the peanut butter adds protein.” He fished the last piece of crispy bacon from the pan, switched off the hob and assembled the sandwiches, one each. “Bacon sarnie a la Sasha. The perfect hangover cure.”

Her smile warmed his heart. “I have to ask. You’ve had a lot of hangovers, if you’ve had time to perfect a remedy?”

“I spent six years at uni. Bachelor’s degree took four years, then another two for my Masters. I had my own stool at the student bar.”

“That’s a lot of bacon sandwiches.” She took a cautious bite, then a bigger one and made a thumbs up sign. “This is really good. Thank you.”

He attacked his own food, but derived more pleasure from watching his Mate eating. She had crumbs dusted over her chin and he longed to kiss them away. Slow down, Sasha. She needs time to trust you again.

* * *  * *

A HANDFUL OF WOLF – available from Amazon

A_Handful_of_Wolf_Cover_for_KindleSasha’s not a looking-to-the-future kind of guy, but he’s made an exception with his plans to travel and meet lots of pretty girls. Too bad his Pack Alpha, fate, and reality have other ideas about his trip abroad. He’s pretty sure he didn’t sign on to be a diplomat for the Snowdonia Wolf Pack. Or to find a Mate. Especially not a human Mate.

Megan knows better than to let a sweet-talking charmer get under her skin, but Sasha’s sexy playfulness is making her forget all her rules. Except one: she’s not willing to risk her heart by falling in love. The gorgeous boy from Wales can only be a fling, especially since her over-protective brothers hate him on sight.

In the midst of a wolf uprising, a hesitant Mate, and Megan’s complicated family ties, Sasha learns that sometimes impulsiveness is dangerous and even lethal. Can he show Megan why they belong together before it all comes crashing down around him and he loses his Mate forever?

* * *  * *

Read the first chapter here: FREE Kindle preview

 

grated choc

Jenny’s Tiramisu

In Perfect Stranger, Jenny cooks a lot. One of the desserts she makes is this super easy version of Tiramisu.

I’ve also made it without the liqueur substituting black coffee instead. It’s equally delicious – and suitable for children🙂

tiramisu

This yummy Italian dessert actually benefits from being made ahead, allowing all the lovely flavours to mingle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients

  • 568ml pot double cream
  • 250g tub mascarpone
  • 75ml marsala
  • 5 tbsp golden caster sugar
  • 300ml strong coffee, made with 2 tbsp coffee granules and 300ml boiling water
  • 175g pack sponge finger
  • 25g chunk dark chocolate
  • 2 tsp cocoa powder

Method

  1. Put the cream, mascarpone, Marsala and sugar in a large bowl. Whisk until the cream and mascarpone have completely combined and have the consistency of thickly whipped cream.
  2. Get your serving dish ready. Put the coffee into a shallow dish and dip in a few sponge fingers at a time, turning for a few secs until they are nicely soaked, but not soggy. Layer these into your dish until you have used half the biscuits, then spread over half of the creamy mixture. Using the coarse side of the grater, grate over most of the chocolate. Then repeat the layers (you should use up all the coffee), finishing with the creamy layer.
  3. Cover and chill for a few hrs or overnight. This can now be kept in the fridge for up to 2 days. To serve, dust with cocoa powder and grate over the remainder of the chocolate.

 

Original recipe from BBC Good Food magazine, March 2009:  http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/9652/bestever-tiramisu

 

 

 

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~ Perfect Stranger – pre-order for only $0.99 ~

Like dark ‘n’ angsty romance?

If you like dark and angsty contemp romance, this one is for you. You can grab a copy at the pre-order discount price of $0.99 – it goes up to $3.99 on August 31.

 


aPS_FWhen one night just isn’t enough

Kate’s having the birthday from hell. A sadistic boss and rumors of a corporate takeover threatening her handpicked team are bad enough, but then her car breaks down in the middle of nowhere. In a monsoon.

A one-night stand with the delicious Jordan Merrill is probably not her best idea, but it’s far more appealing than room service and pay-per-view. Like Cinderella, she runs away from the best night of her life, but instead of leaving a glass slipper, she drops her business card.

Like Prince Charming, Jordan isn’t satisfied with just one night, though he and Kate live hundreds of miles apart.

Kate’s worked hard to reach her senior management position, and she knows a long-distance relationship is impossible, even if she falls in love with Jordan. He wants to promise her a happily ever after, but is she ready to throw away her career for him?

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

 

Excerpt:

What time was Kate likely to be finished for the day? I didn’t know what she did for a living or where she’d be. She hadn’t turned down my dinner invitation, so I guessed she must be staying another night at least. My stride faltered. I wasn’t sure which room she was in. We hadn’t exchanged phone numbers, but I could ask Reception to connect me to her room.

I glanced at my watch as I closed the bedroom door behind me. Nearly six. I’d try calling her now.

Or not. Reception informed me there was no Kate Archer staying in the hotel. I pushed. My company did host the current conference, and I didn’t want to break any privacy laws; I just wanted to know if she’d checked out or left a message for me.

Yes to checking out, and no to the message.

Fuck. She was gone.

I hung up and stared out of the window at the bright evening. My emotions were a jumbled mess. Why did she leave without saying anything? Had some emergency cropped up? Something that necessitated a departure so rapid, she didn’t have time to leave a two-line note? Thanks for the fuck. See you around.

Maybe I’d read her wrong.

It made no sense. We scorched the sheets last night with off-the-charts sex, and I’d swear she enjoyed it every bit as much as I did.

The evening ahead now felt bleak and empty. I sank onto the sofa and absently reached down to unfasten my shoes.

The business card was almost out of sight; I could have easily missed it, where it lay on the floor.

I stared at the small white card puzzled, and then smiled when I realized its significance.

Kate Archer, Operations Manager, ComCo.

 

 

 

gold

Faster, Higher, Stronger: What I learned from Olga Korbut

 

 

medal

 

I was nine years old when Olga Korbut sprang to fame at the Munich Olympics. The fresh-faced and smiling young Russian gymnast stole everyone’s heart that year. It was the first time I’d paid any attention to the Olympics, and most of it sailed over my head, but I managed to be glued to the TV whenever Olga was competing.

 

tearsHer brilliant smiles when things went well, were charming, but we cried along with her when she failed. She cried tears. On international TV. It was a revelation.

 

I’m pretty sure her performance (and subsequent gold medals) went a long way to inspiring millions of other young girls to take up gymnastics. Most of the summer holidays were spent with my friends as we tried to master the forward roll, handstand, and cartwheel. We came home covered in grass stains, and aching in every muscle, but if Olga Korbut could win three gold medals, there was hope for us too.

 

So what did I learn from this amazing young woman? Don’t give up. Anything is possible.

 

When I struggled with one of my University Courses (failed an exam, failed the re-sit, re-took the year, failed the exam again—and then failed the final re-sit), my tutor told me it was time to give up. I took a year out, switched courses and started again – and finally graduated with a Bachelor of Science.

 

When I wanted to emigrate to New Zealand from the UK, but didn’t have the right set of qualifications and experience, it looked impossible. I kept applying for jobs here, and eventually landed one that would give me the sponsorship I needed to qualify for the visa.

 

And when I wanted to become a writer—a published writer—it was another tortuous path. Landing my first contract was amazing, and every time Release Day comes around, I take a moment to remind myself how far I’ve come.

 

Thank you, Olga. You’re still my inspiration.

 

P.S. It has to be said, I suck at gymnastics. I could do a mean forward roll, but in gym class at school, the only other thing I did well was climbing the rope.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Check out this lovely 6-minute video to see a summary of her olympics:

And this incredible routine she became famous for, including the Korbut-flip (now banned).

 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The world’s press went crazy for her:

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2012/jul/06/50-stunning-olympic-moments-olga-korbut

 

 

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Starting in the middle

Silken Sheets & Seduction

sofia1

When the start is no longer the beginning

Begin at the beginning,” the King said, very gravely, “and go on till you come to the end: then stop.  ~Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

It’s a lovely idea, and I usually write in this order, but publishing is another matter. They’ve ended up out of sequence.

My last major release, Pole Positioncan be read as a standalone contemp romance. However, the secondary characters in that (Kate & Jordan) are about to appear in their own romance – Perfect Stranger – which precedes Pole Position.

Then you have the Talismanseries, which also features Jon and Anita (from Pole Position). And later this year, I’m publishing the first in the Event Horizon series, which also features Kate & Jordan.

This is actually the beauty of self-publishing, that my characters and worlds are not locked down by a publishing house, and…

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By sofiagrey1 Posted in News