This Kiss Thursday: Serena Simpson #tkt

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This Kiss Thursday is out of this world…literally. Check out Niko from Serena Simpson.

Are you ready?

~*~

 

His lips were real and solid. Her body reacted immediately. The world around her dissolved and the reality of the game room intruded on her senses. Still, her lips were pressed against his, as his tongue snaked out of his mouth, searching for entrance into hers.

Her mind shouted stop, even as her mouth opened. Oh, he tasted so good, wild and untamed. Her breathing labored as he pressed into that kiss, wanting more.

His hand had unhooked her from the VR while he had moved her closer. She was practically on his lap. He wanted her, no mistaking that.

She pulled away, looking for sanity, or at least the willpower to say no.

“Do you need to run, Kitten?”

Hell yeah, she needed to run. She was going to do that in just a moment, but first she needed one more taste. She needed something to remember him by.

She leaned over and tugged on his lower lip with her teeth. He gave a low growl that made her panties wet and her pussy throb.

When his tongue pushed between her lips, she met it with her own, dueling with him for pleasure. The taste of him overwhelmed, making her heady with desire.

I am so gonna run. She went to her knees and found herself throwing one leg over his and settling on his lap. She rubbed herself over his erection.

She had sex to forget, she reminded herself. Sex wasn’t for pleasure. It was for power, for the drowning of one’s sorrows. It was even to show yourself that your body was yours, no matter what happened to it. But it was never, ever for pleasure.

She sucked long and hard on his tongue. She didn’t want to forget right now. She wanted to celebrate their small victory of staying alive in the game. She wanted to celebrate that she had beat the odds and was still here.

In the end, more than any of the lies she was telling herself, she wanted Niko Dare. She had wanted him from the moment she first saw him. She didn’t want to be strong or calculating. She just wanted to feel.

She pulled back and looked into his eyes, those amazing eyes she had seen in the game. They stared back at her now in all of their alien beauty.

“Kitten.” He raised his hand and stroked her cheek, rubbing his thumb along her jaw line. “I am not a man. I won’t sleep with you and be ready to let you go in the morning. I am going to want to keep you, but not control you.”

He would be the worst thing for her. She knew that. He would change her world, whether he wanted to or not.

~*~

Want More?

Niko OTHER SITESNiko came to earth with his brothers looking to escape the scientists that created them for war. He never expected or hoped to meet a mate of his own. Then he met Dee who was broken on the edge of destroying herself.

The enemy that followed them is after her.

Dee thinks she’s going crazy and is determined to go out in a blaze of glory, if only Niko would give her a chance. Instead he hounds her and demands that she deals with life no matter what it brings.

Now they are in a race against time. Who will win in the end? Will it be Niko or will the enemy they can’t fins beat him to Dee?

Available on Amazon

This Kiss Thursday: Gwen Hayes #tkt

tkt headerWelcome to This Kiss Thursday where we showcase first kisses in our favorite romance and young adult novels. This week we go all the way back to 1986 with Need You Tonight by Gwen Hayes in the ’80s Mix Tape Anthology. (Don’t worry, I didn’t WRITE it in 1986. It just takes place in 1986) Righteous, dude.

Are you ready?

~*~

 

He probably had more to say, but she didn’t intend to hear it. With more enthusiasm than skill, she reached for his ears and pulled him down to her kiss. It was certainly not like the first one on the tire swing, but neither was it magical like the ones in every dream her young heart had forged.

That is, until he groaned and returned the kiss.

The coat had slipped off her shoulders, but Becky was the farthest thing from cold. Jacob’s strong arms banded around her, and his body was hot like a furnace. He held her head still for a moment while his lips did a magical plundering thing that made her toes curl up with a new sweet pleasure she’d never encountered before.

It didn’t take long until she understood the rhythm of his kiss and gave back what she got. His hands moved down then, cupping her bottom and roaming her back. She twined her arms around him, desperate to get closer, to feel him everywhere.

He pulled away, putting distance between them with one strong arm. “No,” he said between ragged breaths.

Becky sat back on her haunches, her triumph not dimming even a little bit.

“I mean it, Becks. It’s never going to happen for us. We don’t make sense. Not even in a crazy world. You should be—”

“I love you.”

He blinked. “No.”

~*~

Want more?

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book cover for 80s Mix TapeSeven New Adult stories of love in the ’80s, inspired by songs of the decade…

Save a Prayer by Karen Booth
Angie Dawson never wanted to see Graham Whiting or his cheating face again, but her dream job at Music Maker magazine has her photographing his band. Angie had prepared to be a grown-up about working closely with him, but there’s one scenario she hadn’t anticipated. Graham wants her back. She wants him to be the guy he says he can be, but the band has massive tours planned and the groupies will always be there. How does a reunion with her ex end up being anything more than a one-night stand?

Need You Tonight by Gwen Hayes
Jacob Stone is on the run for a crime he didn’t commit, but when he’s stranded by chance with the only woman he’s ever loved, he can’t deny the need to possess her one last time. Mind, body, and soul. Typical good girl Becky McDonald has loved bad boy Jacob since they were kids, but even as she gives in to the passion only he can ignite in her, she hides the truth. One night of passion. One night of need. That’s all they can have, but it will never be enough.

Kickstart My Heart by Autumn Jones Lake
Russell “Chaser” Adams knows he’s destined to take over his father’s outlaw motorcycle club one day, but for now his father encourages him to pursue his music. Raised in a strict family with old-world traditions and their own secrets, Mallory Delov longs for glitter and glamor instead of blood and deceit. Chaser is unlike any man she’s ever known, she can’t help being drawn to him. On the surface they seem like complete opposites. Little do either of them know how much they have in common.

The Fixer by Jenny Holiday
Jenny Fields is a crusader. The editor of her college newspaper, she never met a cause she couldn’t get behind. So when the administration announces it’s tearing down the historic art building, she’s on the case. All she needs to do is get Matthew Townsend, the art department’s most talented student, on board. If she could just get the moody genius to answer his phone…

Drummer Girl by AJ Pine
Sam Walsh is done—done with college, done with guys, done with the whole scene. But her roommate coaxes her out for an epic last night to see an up-and-coming band. Ben McCarthy is the sexy drummer, the would-have-been valedictorian who dropped out three years ago to follow his dream. Tomorrow he and the band leave for London, but for one unforgettable night, it’s just Sam, the music, and him. Can a girl with her feet planted firmly on the ground fall for the boy who reaches for the stars when the only result is a broken heart?

Young Teacher by Bobbi Ruggiero
Control freak Julia Powers hates surprises. With the skills of a ninja, she keeps her ad business and personal life in perfect order. Matthew Gordon wants nothing more than for his band Joyride to go national. While he waits for his big break, he spends his days working in a sandwich shop—a job he loathes—and teaching guitar on the side—a job he loves. His days get a bit more interesting when a mysterious woman comes in for lunch. Imagine his surprise when she shows up at his door for guitar lessons. Unfortunately, Julia can’t play guitar to save her life, and her frustration threatens to ruin any chance of her finding happiness. Will he ever be able to teach her that she’s perfect just as she is?

Just Like Heaven by Rachel Cowell
As a premed student, college junior Sarah Lattimore’s life is a carefully-calibrated system of studying, studying, MCAT prep courses, and more studying. But when she walks into the first day of anatomy lab and sees her gorgeous TA, Sarah’s brilliant mind is suddenly racing in new directions. Grad student Josh has future aspirations toward cancer research. But the unbelievably cute, nerdy Sarah is in his section, and she’s…distracting. When admiring from afar turns to up close and personal, both their academic lives begin to fall apart. Will Sarah realize in time that being with Josh was the smartest choice she’d ever made?

’80s Mix Tape is ready to blind you with science

Not really. I don’t think there is any science in it. But it will blind you with its awesomeness. It’s live and it’s on sale!

Seven New Adult stories of love in the ’80s, inspired by songs of the decade…

book cover for 80s Mix TapeSave a Prayer by Karen Booth
Angie Dawson never wanted to see Graham Whiting or his cheating face again, but her dream job at Music Maker magazine has her photographing his band. Angie had prepared to be a grown-up about working closely with him, but there’s one scenario she hadn’t anticipated. Graham wants her back. She wants him to be the guy he says he can be, but the band has massive tours planned and the groupies will always be there. How does a reunion with her ex end up being anything more than a one-night stand?

Need You Tonight by Gwen Hayes
Jacob Stone is on the run for a crime he didn’t commit, but when he’s stranded by chance with the only woman he’s ever loved, he can’t deny the need to possess her one last time. Mind, body, and soul. Typical good girl Becky McDonald has loved bad boy Jacob since they were kids, but even as she gives in to the passion only he can ignite in her, she hides the truth. One night of passion. One night of need. That’s all they can have, but it will never be enough.

Kickstart My Heart by Autumn Jones Lake
Russell “Chaser” Adams knows he’s destined to take over his father’s outlaw motorcycle club one day, but for now his father encourages him to pursue his music. Raised in a strict family with old-world traditions and their own secrets, Mallory Delov longs for glitter and glamor instead of blood and deceit. Chaser is unlike any man she’s ever known, she can’t help being drawn to him. On the surface they seem like complete opposites. Little do either of them know how much they have in common.

The Fixer by Jenny Holiday
Jenny Fields is a crusader. The editor of her college newspaper, she never met a cause she couldn’t get behind. So when the administration announces it’s tearing down the historic art building, she’s on the case. All she needs to do is get Matthew Townsend, the art department’s most talented student, on board. If she could just get the moody genius to answer his phone…

Drummer Girl by AJ Pine
Sam Walsh is done—done with college, done with guys, done with the whole scene. But her roommate coaxes her out for an epic last night to see an up-and-coming band. Ben McCarthy is the sexy drummer, the would-have-been valedictorian who dropped out three years ago to follow his dream. Tomorrow he and the band leave for London, but for one unforgettable night, it’s just Sam, the music, and him. Can a girl with her feet planted firmly on the ground fall for the boy who reaches for the stars when the only result is a broken heart?

Young Teacher by Bobbi Ruggiero
Control freak Julia Powers hates surprises. With the skills of a ninja, she keeps her ad business and personal life in perfect order. Matthew Gordon wants nothing more than for his band Joyride to go national. While he waits for his big break, he spends his days working in a sandwich shop—a job he loathes—and teaching guitar on the side—a job he loves. His days get a bit more interesting when a mysterious woman comes in for lunch. Imagine his surprise when she shows up at his door for guitar lessons. Unfortunately, Julia can’t play guitar to save her life, and her frustration threatens to ruin any chance of her finding happiness. Will he ever be able to teach her that she’s perfect just as she is?

Just Like Heaven by Rachel Cowell
As a premed student, college junior Sarah Lattimore’s life is a carefully-calibrated system of studying, studying, MCAT prep courses, and more studying. But when she walks into the first day of anatomy lab and sees her gorgeous TA, Sarah’s brilliant mind is suddenly racing in new directions. Grad student Josh has future aspirations toward cancer research. But the unbelievably cute, nerdy Sarah is in his section, and she’s…distracting. When admiring from afar turns to up close and personal, both their academic lives begin to fall apart. Will Sarah realize in time that being with Josh was the smartest choice she’d ever made?

Kindle | Nook | Apple | Kobo |

This Kiss Thursday: Cate Dean #tkt

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Don’t you just love the first kiss in a romance? This week author Cate Dean serves us up a delicious one from her book, Final Hours.

Are you ready?

~*~

“Kane—”

“I have to go.” He moved past her, tried to ignore the beautiful, dark blue eyes that followed him. “Mac will see that you get home safely.”

“Be careful.”

Those quiet words stopped him. He let out his breath, turned around. Elizabeth stood at the end of the console, blonde hair caressing her bare arms, those blue eyes watching him.

With a string of curses running through his head, Kane stopped fighting the attraction.

“Bloody hell—”

In front of God and all his colleagues, he strode over to Elizabeth, hauled her up against his chest, and kissed her.

~ ~ ~

Elizabeth knew, when she saw his eyes change, just what he had planned as he stalked back across the lab.

She couldn’t move, could hardly breathe.

When he swept her up and his lips possessed hers, she expected a hot, fierce, angry kiss. Instead, his lips gentled, exploring hers. The effect was devastating.

He broke through every barrier she’d spent years building, and she felt her heart open to him, trembling, vulnerable.

Both arms reached up to wrap around his neck, and her fingers slid into his thick, unruly hair. He tasted like mint. She let out a low moan when he eased her mouth open, deepening the kiss. She forgot their audience, forgot her fear of becoming attached to a man who would leave her alone, forgot everything but the feel of his lips, the strength of his arms, the heat of his body.

His hand slipped up her back, tangled in her hair as he angled her head, pulled her in deeper. Heat spiraled through her, and the need to get closer had her arching in to him.

She could feel his rapid heartbeat, hear his ragged breath as he started to lose control. Or was that her breath, so fast and hard it made her lightheaded?

Kane broke off the kiss, staring down at her.

“God help me,” he whispered, just before he dove in again.

This time it was fierce and hungry, and she rode the wild emotions, abandoning any attempt to hold back. His demanding mouth, the hands that curved over her hips and pressed her tightly against him refused to let her retreat.

She lost herself in the heat, in the need for another person she had never felt before. A need she protected herself from, in a life that had no guarantees, and more disappointment than she thought she could ever take and stay whole—

This time she broke off the kiss, fighting to catch her breath, terrified that it was too late. Kane rested his forehead against hers, his own breathing just as labored. “I simply meant to say goodbye.”

“That was some goodbye,” she whispered.

“Too much?” Humor edged his deep voice.

“Unforgettable.”

With a quiet sigh, he pressed his lips to her temple. “Ready for this?”

“No.”

His laughter soothed her nerves. “I need you to ease your death grip on my neck, love.”

The endearment had her tensing again. Oh, yes—it was too late. She liked him before they landed in his time. Now she wanted him. How the hell was she supposed to forget the way his lips felt on hers, the raw, uncontrollable emotion he stirred in her?

She lowered her arms, and Kane eased her to the floor. Heat rushed across her face as everyone in the lab applauded.

~*~

Want More?

*The first in an exciting time travel romance series*

Time brought them together – will it also tear them apart?

Final_Hours_coverElizabeth Barritt fought hard to put her childhood behind her. Now she has the chance to move forward, to reach out for a new future.

And she does – right into Jackson Kane’s path. He is a time traveler, from the future, and on the hunt for a rogue agent.

Their attraction is immediate, unexpected – and for Kane, an unwanted distraction. When he is injured protecting Elizabeth, she makes a decision that will change both of their lives. She takes him home.

Once Kane is healed, he goes after the agent. But his journey back to war-torn London takes a sideways turn, forcing Elizabeth to make another choice. She follows him into the past, to help him stop one man from changing their future.

***For readers 18 and older.***

 *Includes a preview of First Breath, Book Two of the Love in Time series.

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This Kiss Thursday: Jamie Wesley #tkt

tkt headerThis Kiss Thursday highlights first kisses in awesome romance and young adult books. Every week, we feature a different author and a different kiss. There’s just something about that first time two people slip in a kiss and tumble into love.

This week, we feature Jamie Wesley and her newest release, Slamdunked by Love.

ARE YOU READY?

~*~

“Quite a night, huh?” she asked, collapsing on the bench next to the stand. She crossed her legs, the split in her dress giving him a too-tempting glimpse of her thigh.
He loosened his tie, his need for air sudden and desperate. Throughout the night, he’d managed to not think about how much she affected him by concentrating on blackjack and meeting fans. But now they were alone. “You can say that again. Scoot over.”

She looked up at him with a sly smile. “Why? I like having the bench all to myself.”

“I’ve gotten a crook in my neck looking down at you all night. This is too much of a difference for me to take.” He sat next to her, careful not to look at the bared flesh. Careful not to touch.

Indignation settled on her face. “I’m not that short.”

He loved riling her. She made it so easy. Somehow he managed to hold back a grin. “Yeah, compared to a five-year-old.”

She snorted. “You must give lessons on how to flatter a woman.”

“I do. I give other lessons, too.”

“Oh, yeah, like what?” Her lush mouth called to him yet again.

Before he could think about stopping himself, he leaned in and said, “How to treat a woman right. How to make a woman feel better than she ever has before.”

She met his gaze squarely, but her voice came out shaky. “Don’t try that on me. I’m immune.”

“You are?”

“Yep. Sure am.” A jerky nod accompanied the statement.

He reached up and brushed aside a strand of hair blowing against her cheek, his fingers lingering against the soft, fragrant skin. His eyes searched hers.

Her eyes darkened, but to her credit, she didn’t back away. “What are you doing?”

“Trying to figure you out.”

“I’m just me,” she whispered.

“That’s what I find so intriguing.”

Her lips parted, like she was having trouble drawing in breath. The Texas November night air was still sultry, yes, but that wasn’t why she was having trouble. He wanted, needed to kiss her. Taste those lips that had been taunting him all night. He lowered his head. And touched nothing but air.

“What’s taking the valet so long?” Caitlin asked, looking in the direction of the garage.

Brady blinked, struggling to come out of the trance she’d put him in. “Wh—?”

Caitlin’s mouth landed on top of his, cutting off his question. Desire, which he’d managed to keep in check up until now, stormed through his defenses like he did on a breakaway to the basket. She tasted sweet, like champagne and the strawberries she’d nibbled on throughout the night.

All the reasons why he shouldn’t, couldn’t start something with her no longer mattered. He couldn’t remember them anyway. Now that he’d had one taste of her, he wanted more. He wrapped his arms around her waist and hauled her closer until she was draped across his chest, her scent, that of peaches, clouding his senses. His tongue teased her bottom lip until she opened up with a moan that fed his desire. He slipped inside, dying to get more of the taste that was driving him out of his mind. Delicious. Sweet. So damned good.

She was right there with him, her talented lips and tongue enticing him to deepen the kiss, pressing her lithe body against him, sending blood rushing to his lap. What was she doing to him? He teetered on the edge of a cliff. Only the sound of an approaching car stopped him from falling over.

Slowly, reluctantly, they drew away from each other. Arousal swirled in the depths of her brown eyes. Arousal that matched his own.

His pulse beating hard in his ears, he gulped for air. Desperate to regain some control, he cleared his throat and asked, “What was that about?”

~*~

Want More?

Revenge is supposed to be sweet…

Caitlin Monroe is ready to confront her past. Years ago, her father ditched her mother for the NBA, leaving her pregnant and alone. Now he’s a big-shot coach, and Caitlin’s ready to take the so-called “ family man” down. But on her way to the team gala, her car dies, and it’s her father’s sexy new star player who comes to her rescue.

Brady Hudson wants nothing more than to put his past behind him and concentrate on winning the championship for his new team. But when he finds himself the recipient of unwanted attention—attention that could destroy his career—he introduces the beautiful woman he saved on the side of the road as his “girlfriend.”

Brady needs to focus on his job. And Caitlin isn’t about to date an athlete whose career is riding on her father—though he is a convenient way to get the dirt she needs. But sometimes love has other ideas, and it’s not long before their pretend relationship becomes a liability neither can resist…

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This Kiss Thursday: Victoria Dahl #tkt

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Welcome to This Kiss Thursday where we celebrate that very first kiss from our favorite romance books. This week, Victoria Dahl give us a sweet taste from her erotic historical, Angel. And for a limited time, you can pick up Angel free at participating ebook retailers.

Are you ready?

~*~

Melisande stripped off last night’s sheets and remade the bed, aware of Bill quietly watching. She unlaced her boots and placed them carefully under the chair in the corner, then unbuttoned her dress.

When she went to hang it, she caught sight of herself in the mirror on her door and stopped to look at the necklace nestled against her throat. The shell was so delicate. Pink and lustrous against her skin. She touched it and tipped her head up to let the pendant catch more light. She slipped her chemise down her shoulders so all she could see was her skin and the ribbon around her neck and the pendant. Did Bill like the way it looked?

Turning back to him, she removed the rest of her clothing and stood naked before him. He took her in with a hot, hungry look, but he didn’t grab for her. His hands stayed loose at his sides.

She approached him slowly, easing his coat from his broad shoulders with flattened hands so she could feel the man beneath the cloth. His coat dropped to the floor and she reached for the buttons of his shirt. Before she could open half of them, he stilled her hands with his, then tipped her chin up.

“You’re so beautiful,” he whispered just before his mouth met hers. Plenty of men had kissed her in the course of her work, but no one had ever kissed her like this. Gently, carefully, his lips brushing over hers with no teeth or tongue or spit. He kissed her like she was precious instead of cheap. Priceless instead of easily bought.

She was already naked. He could just open his trousers and push himself into her. He didn’t have to kiss her. But he did.

And when his tongue finally touched hers, she whimpered, actually whimpered as if it weren’t the thousandth tongue she’d ever tasted. He was sweet and spicy from the treat they’d shared, and Melisande found herself pushing up on her toes for more of his mouth.

His big hands moved to her back and then her ass and when his mouth left hers, she gasped for air. The gasp melted into a sigh when he leaned down to kiss her neck, his teeth nipping a little at the skin beneath her ear. Arching her neck for more, she let him lay her back on the bed.

~*~

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This Kiss Thursday #tkt

couple kissingWelcome to the inaugural This Kiss Thursday Post. Each week, we’ll feature a first kiss excerpt from wonderful YA and romance novels. You know…kissing books.

There is something special about the first kiss between a couple. Sometimes they are awkward, sometimes sweet, sometimes SMOKIN’.  Sometimes, all three.

Editor's Note: That lipstick in This Kiss graphic is too phallic

 

To start us out, we’re going all the way back to 2011 to FALLING UNDER. Theia and Haden are my most romantic couple so far. Something about a demon boy and a bookworm makes my heart skip a beat. Enjoy their first kiss…

Falling Under by Gwen Hayes   “I’d like my first kiss now.” I held my hand to his lips when he tried to argue. I moved my hand to his cheek, searching his eyes for understanding. “I know you must have dreamed what that kiss would be like—to kiss a girl who saw you as a whole, not as just what you showed.”
He shook his head. “No. I never dreamed of kissing a girl—I only ever dreamed about kissing you.”
My breath caught in my throat, and I smiled, feeling the heat of my ever returning blush. Then a prickle of cold followed the heat. “Our time is growing short isn’t it?”
He gripped my hand on his cheek, grasping me to him even as he spoke. “I should leave you be.”
I closed my eyes and waited, pursing my lips.
A chaste touch of lips dotted my forehead. I tried to memorize everything. The way he smelled, the touch of his lips, soft and warm on my skin, the sound of the river gurgling contentedly behind us. The next brush was softer yet, but his hand pushed into my hair. His lips traced a light path to my temple. Then my cheek. Still softly, they roamed like whispers. He paused and my eyelids fluttered open. His eyes were dark promises, trained on me.
“Kiss me, Haden.”
“Aye.”
Both hands moved to cup my jaw, and he leaned down. His lips met mine, a light brush. I could taste his nervousness. I hoped he could taste my delight. For a sweeter kiss had never been bestowed upon a girl. Not in storybooks or real life.
Not in Heaven or Hell.
Gently, he plied from me every dream I’d ever had with light sweeps of his mouth. He retreated briefly then dipped again, deepening the caress, parting my lips sweetly. Delight bloomed inside me, its roots strong and sure. Haden drew me tightly into an embrace, his kisses less tentative, and my answering mouth growing bolder.
He stole nothing of my essence, but instead gave to me his own.
“Good morning, Theia,” he murmured.
And I awoke to a new day.

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Falling Under Description:

In her dreams he’s irresistible—seductive, charming, and undoubtedly dangerous. But when he appears to her when she’s awake—and captivates her just the same—she’s not sure which way is up and which is down.

Theia Alderson has always led a sheltered life, not allowed the same freedoms as the rest of the teenagers in the small California town of Serendipity Falls. But when a devastatingly handsome boy appears in the halls of her school, she feels every urge she’s ever denied burning through her at the slightest glance from Haden Black. Theia knows she’s seen Haden before—not around town, but in her dreams.
Theia doesn’t understand how she dreamed of Haden before they ever met, but every night has them joined in a haunting world of eerie fantasy. And as the Haden of both the night and the day beckons her forward one moment and pushes her away the next, the only thing Theia knows for sure is that the incredible pull she feels towards him is stronger than her fear. And as she slowly discovers what Haden truly is, Theia’s not sure if she wants to resist him, even if the cost is her soul.

New Release: Don’t Stop Believing

Silver PinesWelcome to the charming coastal town of Silver Pines, WA. Nestled between the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains, Silver Pines is known for clean air, majestic views, heartwarming, sexy romance, and more than its fair share of shenanigans.

The first book in the series releases today! I have referred to it for a long time as The Grumpy Lumberjack’s Gay Christmas…but alas…that is not it’s real title.

 

 

Don't Stop Believing is a m/m gay romance. 
Not all books in this series are LGBT, but just like your town, 
Silver Pines is home to diverse characters who all deserve their 
happy ending.

Ready to hear more?

It’s only .99!

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The Ogre from the Hill 

Simon Powell, the town recluse, only comes to town to deliver firewood and get supplies. Two days cover for Don't Stop Believing by Gwen Hayesbefore Christmas, he sees the new librarian’s car in a ditch and knows he can’t leave him on the road, but it’s too late to take him back to town. He’ll have something he’s never had in his cabin in the ten years that’s he’s lived there…company.

The Book Nerd from the City 

Adam Parker moved to the small community to make big changes in his life, but being snowbound with the bearded lumberjack in his rustic cabin was something he’d thought only existed in his fantasies. Simon pushes away anyone who wants to get close to him, but Adam sees what he’s hiding in his heart and he wants it. Badly.

A Christmas to Remember 

Adam smells like cinnamon and redemption but Simon learned long ago that everything he touches gets tainted, and he’ll do anything to keep his darkness away from Adam’s light.

But Adam has something else on his side—he’s been a very good boy this year and all he wants for Christmas is Simon.

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Healthy Dog Treats from Mr. Hayes

I’ve had lots of people ask for my husband’s puppy cookie recipe–especially now that so many dog snacks and foods get recalled as unsafe. He makes these for the pups once a week. I Love My Dog concept

Pumpkin Dog Snacks

2 Eggs
½ cup of pumpkin puree
2 TBL Powdered milk
2 TBL Peanut butter, fresh ground or homemade preferable
2 TBL Brewer’s Yeast
2 TBL Palm (coconut) sugar, more for the nutrients than for the sweetness
1 ½ cups Rice Flour
1 cup Oat flour
2 TBL coconut oil, melted

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk the eggs lightly then whisk in the pumpkin, powdered milk, peanut butter, brewer’s yeast, and palm sugar. Then stir in, I like to use gloved hands for this, the rice flour, oat flour, and coconut oil. It should come together to form a nice workable dough, like… play dough. You may need to add a touch more rice flour if it’s too sticky. On a lightly floured (rice flour) surface knead the dough 5 to 10 times. Now roll the dough to a thickness of about a ¼ inch and cut into shapes, place them on a sheet pan and dock with a fork. Bake the cookies in a 350 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Half way through the cooking pull the cookies out and turn each cookie over so they will brown evenly.

Depending on how thick I roll the dough I can usually get between 55 and 65 two inch cookies.
Note: The flour combination can be switched up. I have used buckwheat, millet, and almond flours. Just so long as you can get a workable dough.

 

*Yes, he really does use homemade peanut butter.

Erin Condren Planner and my office space

(I love looking at pictures of where authors work, so I included one of my space below! If you are a writer/artist, put your pics in comments, I’d love to see where you create!)

I’m so excited that my Erin Condren planner arrived this week.

Picture of Erin Condren Planner

This is the new Erin Condren Planner.

I’ve been watching Youtube videos and Pinterest boards and coveting them so much, but put off getting one because:

  • I hardly ever leave the house. Last year, I traveled a lot. This year, I have very few plans. I work from home. I started cutting my own hair this summer (thanks Youtube!) I only go to the doctor when forced (and I’m doing great now, you guys.) My husband is the house manager, so he does the shopping, meal planning, etc. My kids live on campus and keep track of their own schedules now. I really have no pressing need to keep track of the days the way some do. (It would have come in super handy when I had two kids in sports and extracurricular activities though.)
  • I am a little intimidated by glorious Washi and sticker creations all over the net.
  • Did I mention I am always home?

    picture of shelf in Gwen Hayes office with Erin Condren planner

    The shelf where Erin Condren Planner lives

But I purchased one for my daughter, who loved hers, and posted an affiliate link on the blog for my readers (all seven of you) so someone else could get the $10 off coupon. And when they did–Erin Condren sent ME a $10 off coupon. (Affiliate link still works–you click on it and sign up for the Erin Condren site newsletter and they email you a coupon. And if you buy something, they email me a coupon. And THEN, you get a link you can share with others.)

So I bit the bullet and figured out a way to use it as a journal instead of a planner.

So instead of using the Morning, Afternoon, Evening, Meal boxes for time, I’m going with:

picture of decorated Erin Condren planner

Rough draft of Erin Condren Planner

My Day: Instead of planning ahead for doctor and hair appointments, I’ll journal a little bit about what I did that day. It’s a small box, so no pressure. I’m thinking stuff like “Met wordcount goal” and “Went out to lunch today: wore pants!”

Spirit: Everyday my life is awesome, so this box is for me to remember that. Gratitude journal some days. Bragging box on others–like this week, a book I edited, The Deal by Elle Kennedy, hit #65 on the USA Today Bestseller list. How amazing is that? Somedays, I might put in a quote that resonated. No rules.

Mind: Writers need to fill the well. This is where I’ll keep track of music that resonated( 1989 by Taylor Swift if you are interested), what we watched at night (Season Six of Friends currently, books I read for pleasure or self-improvement (17th re-read of Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie). Maybe a new word I learned that day. Again, no rules. I think it will be fun to look back on.

Body: Fitbit steps, water check-off, Fruit and veggies. Probably not my weight. Because that is no fun and this journal is about nurturing myself not pushing.

I also ordered some cute weather stickers so I can track the sunshine and see if weather makes a difference in my mood. 🙂

picture of Gwen Hayes' Workspace

Gwen Hayes’ Workspace

And here is my office and workspace. I had a couple weeks without clients, so I spent some much needed time making it prettified. Now I have no excuses.

Note the treadmill to the left. Because what have I told you about sitting for too long?