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January 19, 2013 by in category Archives tagged as , , , ,

Monica Stoner, Member at Large

Does romance end after a certain age? Is there some preordained cutoff for intimacy? I’m sure many young people might want to believe their parents only did the deed often enough to produce children because thinking about the alternative might give them nightmares.

Fact is, romance doesn’t die at any one specific age though to peruse the Romance section of a book store one might draw the conclusion a heroine over thirty is also over that proverbial hill. At a time when publishing decisions were based on advice from people barely out of college, that might be understandable. But in this very brave and shiny new world of small presses and self publishing, why don’t we see more heroines, well, our age?

Could the lack of mature heroines be caused by habits and standards established in those earlier days of publishing (all of five or so years ago?) Or do we write what we believe people want to read? Do we worry if we were to write about people falling in love at the same time their arches are falling, we won’t find enough of an audience?

Remember the phrase “Love, like youth, is wasted on the young” from that lovely 1960 song “The Second Time Around?”

“Love is lovelier the second time around

Just as wonderful with both feet on the ground

It’s that second time you hear your love song sung

Makes you think, perhaps, that love like youth

Is wasted on the young…”

Words by Sammy Cahn and Music by Jimmy Van Heusen

-Performed by Bing Crosby in the 1960 film “High Time”,

This is considered a classic love song, well at least by the people I knew in high school. A lot of those people read books, and some of those readers peruse the Romance shelves. How many of your friends read Romance? And how many of those readers do you think might be just a bit tired of flawless skin, perky body parts, and an air of wide eyed innocence?

It’s an intriguing question. Right now the hot age group seems to be teens into twenties, and some of those books are extremely well written. Does this mean we should all be pounding out our own YA or MG books? I admire these authors but teens live in another universe with their very own language from me, and I sincerely doubt I could ever create a book in that genre. Having survived my teens, twenties, thirties, and beyond, I believe I could create a story about those young people many decades later.

What do you think? Is there a need for books about people whose libido didn’t dry up and blow away the day they bought their first pair of support hose?

Monica Stoner writes as Mona Karel in multiple sub genres.

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Romancing the e-Reader with Jina Bacarr

January 11, 2013 by in category Archives tagged as , , , , , , , , , , ,

Guess who?

I’m your new e-Reader. All sexy swirls and curly Qs. Just waiting for you to click me on and take you to paradise.

Yes, I know, your rabbit vibrator made the same promises…but I’ve got something special to offer you.

I’ve got romance.

I can sweep you away to that special place in your mind where you can fall in love over and over again…and have great sex.

So, put away your bunny vibe and hop aboard!

I’m trim and gorgeous. Sexy design. Botox-smooth case.

Slimmer than I’ve been in years.

Clear, no-glare screens. And those cute keyboards. Like sassy, high-heeled shoes. Makes you want to let your fingers do the walking.

And no more of those pesky page numbers to get in the way. It’s like weighing yourself after you’ve gone on your mocha latte splurge. Who wants to know?

I do have a pet peeve about those TOCs. Half the time the Table of Contents key doesn’t work, sending ahead in the story and you know who’s sleeping with whom before you’ve guessed. it.

And don’t talk to me about Bookmarks.

They’re like old boyfriends who won’t go away. Once you’ve marked them, you’re stuck with them.

Ah, but I can’t stop drooling over the hunky guys on the Cover. Muscle-bound heroes to die for.

Hmm…if I could add just one thing to my e-Reader software…

It would be to have the Cover Hunk in 3-D.

All of him…and you know what I mean!

Happy Romance e-Reading in 2013!



PS: If you want to try out your new e-Reader with an erotic short story, download:

“Breaking the Rules” — FREE today on Kindle Amazon  

A working girl who learns you have to ask for what you want.

At work…or in bed.


Or try an erotic short story: “Nice Girls Do It” for 99 cents on Amazon Kindle and e-tailers everywhere!

A stormy day and Chloe gets caught in the rain until a mysterious stranger who calls himself “the Hunter” offers her shelter in his old Victorian mansion.

And tells her about the secret ritual of the geisha when she loses her virginity.

Sensual, mysterious, naughty…

Will Chloe lose her virginity before morning comes?

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Thanks, OCC

June 6, 2012 by in category Pets, Romance & Lots of Suspense by Linda O. Johnston tagged as , , ,

OCC is the Orange County Chapter of Romance Writers of America. We’re romance writers. But some of us also are mystery writers. Writers of romantic suspense. Both.
I’m always delighted to attend OCC meetings, but I’m especially looking forward to the one next weekend. Why? It’ll be chock full of excellent research info for those of us who are mystery and suspense writers as well as romance authors.

First, I see that Debra Holland is giving a morning workshop on “Creating Fighting and
Self-Defense Scenes.” That should be fascinating. The chapter’s published authors are even forgoing a Published Authors Workshop that morning to be able to attend Debra’s presentation.

And then, in the afternoon, our guest speaker Dennis Kee, a weapons expert, will present a program on “Don’t Blame the Gun, Blame the Writer.” It sounds as if it’ll be full of excellent information on weapons.

I had thought I’d be out of town next weekend, but fortunately my plans changed. I’ll be there! See you all soon–and I’m really looking forward to the June OCC meeting.

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Job Interview Questions for Your Romance Novel Heroine

March 11, 2011 by in category Archives tagged as , , , , , , , , ,

by Evelyn Q. Darling

Romance Reporter At Large

Is your romance novel heroine qualified for the job?

Did you interview her before you started writing? I don’t mean where she went to school, what her favorite color is, etc. but whether or not she’s qualified for the job as a romance novel heroine.

For example, does she have the skills needed to perform her job: Can she shoot a Glock if you’re writing an FBI agent? Lace up a corset if she’s interviewing for the job as a Victorian lady’s maid?

Or she may be overqualified for the job. For example, she can type faster than you or she has aspirations to leave the romance novel field and get a literary gig.

How long has she been out of work?

Romance novel jobs are hard to get and if it’s been decades since she slipped between the pages of a novel, you might want to reconsider. On the other hand, experience between the sheets is important for every romance heroine.

A typical interview could go like this:

Miss Jones, I’m writing a novel that takes place during the Regency Period. Are you a fan of Jane Austen?

Miss Jones: Jane who? I’m so into Lady Gaga. Love her sunglasses.


Miss Smith, my next novel is about an FBI agent who’s very physically active to catch the bad guys. Can you drop and do twenty?

Miss Smith: the only thing I dropped was twenty pounds to get this interview.

Let’s try again.

Miss von Rittenhaus, I need a romance novel heroine who sleeps all day and bites all night. Can you list your qualifications to be the vamp queen in my new urban fantasy novel?

Miss von Rittenhaus: Honey, I can snooze and cruise with the best of them. I’ve hit every vamp bar from here to Tampa and let me tell you, no one gets her fangs on better than Lulu.

When can you start?

Miss von Rittenhaus: Tonight. As soon as the sun goes down. (Pause). You haven’t mentioned a benefits package.

What do you mean?

Miss von Rittenhaus: Do I get overtime pay for all this night work? And how about a 401K? I’m not getting any younger and in this economy a girl, I mean vamp, has to look out for herself. What about my e-rights? And health benefits? What if I chip a fang and I have to see a dentist between chapters?

Jeez…Romance heroines…you can’t write with them and you can’t write without them.

This is Evelyn Q. Darling. Till next time when we’ll interview the romance novel hero and see if he’s up for the job.

The Blonde Samurai: “She embraced the way of the warrior. Two swords. Two loves.”

Jina Bacarr is also the author of The Blonde Geisha ,Cleopatra’s Perfume, Naughty Paris, Tokyo Rendezvous, a Spice Brief, and Spies, Lies & Naked Thighs

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The Faces of a Romance Writer by Jina Bacarr

February 11, 2010 by in category Archives tagged as , , , ,

I write sensual romance. Spine-tingling fiction where the discovery of her bridegroom’s secret life signals a most unusual wedding night for the heroine in my new Spice novel, The Blonde Samurai.

Not exactly what every blushing bride has in mind, but then again, what we sensual romance (especially historical) writers write doesn’t always reflect reality.

You might say we’re Eve White by day and Eve Black at our computers.

Eve who? you ask.

Those are the names of the characters played by Joanne Woodward in the classic black and white film, “The Three Faces of Eve.” It’s based on the true story of a conservative southern housewife in Augusta, Georgia and the psychiatrist who tries to help her integrate her split personalities.

How easy is it for us writers to switch from one personality to another? Does Eve Black whisper in our ear when we’re writing those hot scenes then go back inside us when we head off to soccer practice or do the laundry?

What part of our personality is Eve White?

We all have moments when the story’s not working or we get a rejection or we doubt ourselves. That’s when we have to work hard to put Eve White back in her place and keep going.

Which brings me to the third persona in the film: Jane. She’s the normal one. The personality who keeps us sane, does our editing, helps us with the plotting and cuts “-ly” words when they get in the way of our story.

But let’s go back to Eve Black…There’s a scene in the film with two psychiatrists and Eve where the more experienced doctor thinks she’s faking it until he sees a remarkable transformation as Eve changes from her dark personality to her naïve persona–her voice, body posture, mannerisms, thoughts and objectives.
That’s what we writers do. We become our sexy selves on paper, wearing those black stockings, pink garter belts and full of mischief…

And if you’re wondering who wrote this blog post–Eve White or Eve Black…

I’ll let you guess.

Now it’s your turn. Do you have an Eve Black personality who helps you write those hot scenes?

The Blonde Samurai: “She embraced the way of the warrior. Two swords. Two loves.”

Jina Bacarr is also the author of The Blonde Geisha ,

Cleopatra’s Perfume, Naughty Paris, Tokyo Rendezvous, a Spice Brief,

and Spies, Lies & Naked Thighs

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