Search This Blog


Friday, December 30, 2011

Friday Recipe: New Years

Plans? Party? Quiet night at home? Whatever you're doing this New Year's Eve, don't drink and drive, bring a small discrete roll of tums (just in case) and hope nothing you do ends up on YouTube or Facebook.

From All Recipes top New Year's recipes!

Honey-Garlic Glazed Meatballs:
Prep Time:25 Min
Cook Time:15 Min
Ready In:40 Min

2 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1 cup dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 teaspoons salt
2 pounds ground beef
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon butter
3/4 cup ketchup
1/2 cup honey
3 tablespoons soy sauce

In a large bowl combine eggs and milk. Add the bread crumbs, onion and salt. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into 1-in. balls. Place in two greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pans. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees F for 12-15 minutes or until meat is no longer pink.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, saute garlic in butter until tender. Stir in the ketchup, honey and soy sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain meatballs; add to sauce. Carefully stir to evenly coat. Cook for 5-10 minutes.

Hot Buttered Rum Batter (because Baby it's Cold Outside!)
Prep Time:10 Min
Cook Time:10 Min
Ready In:40 Min

1 pound butter
1 pound brown sugar
1 pound confectioners' sugar
1 quart vanilla ice cream, softened
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Blend in brown sugar and confectioners' sugar. Remove from heat, and whisk in the ice cream, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Pour mixture into a plastic container, seal, and freeze.

In a coffee mug, measure 1 tablespoon Hot Buttered Rum Batter and 1 fluid ounce of rum, then fill cup with boiling water. Stir, and sprinkle top of drink with nutmeg.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 78 Total Fat: 4.3g Cholesterol: 12mg

Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Escape: A Hellfire Club Erotique

This is the second in my new Hellfire Club series. Which really should have been the first, as I'm planning on giving away this one. Why? The better question is...why not?

Why shouldn't I give this story away? It is Christmas after all...or the season at least!

And just because this one won't be ready for public consumption for another week or two (don't worry, I'll let you know when it's up!) doesn't mean it can't be billed as:

After Christmas Sale!

My way of saying thanks, happy happy, and stay warm during the bitter winter that begins with January. Unless you live in the Southern Hemisphere, in which case how about a nice tall cool drink instead?

Gabrielle Bertrand believed the men she loved had been beheaded during the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror. Now promised in marriage to a general of the revolution, she still fears for her life and has resigned herself to the union.

And then fate intervenes and she sees Eric LeClaire and André St. Germaine again.
Eric and André have spent the last two years searching for Gabrielle, terrified she’d been killed during one of the revolution’s roundups. Now that they’ve found her again, neither will let her go.

But with National Police after them, and years spent apart, will Gabrielle return to her lovers? Or will all three of them face the wrath of Madame Guillotine?

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Wednesday Regency at Sweet N Sexy Divas

Today I'm at Sweet 'N Sexy Divas talking Regency, menage, books, and more. What's your favorite bit about the Regency--do you even LIKE the Regency Era? Are you so over it you won't even watch Pride and Prejudice and Zombies? (With hopefully more zombies than were included in the book.)

I'm giving away a download of Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale and a $5 gift card to Barnes and Noble.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What do you expect from a series?

Continuity and yet new and exciting plots? Recurring characters? An overall plot? Do you read specific series for the world an author has created or the ever changing plots? The big end game? The good vs evil?

Continuity. By this I'm talking about the world. It's the little things that matter, right? But what if a hint of those little things had been introduced in previous stories? Would that be acceptable? Little clues to mysteries and such.

But what about the characters? Do you like to see characters from previous books make cameo appearances? Or do you prefer more substantial roles? Or do you even prefer a series of books following a couple?

Now personally, I like a good over-arcing plot. I like to ferret out details, the mystery, the whodunit of a longer story. My problem is when an author elongates the mystery for the sake of sales. Now, as an author myself, sales are important. But as a reader, don't cheat me.

What are your favorite series? What do you like to see included in one?

Monday, December 26, 2011

How was your Christmas?

Everyone get what you wanted for Christmas? Or at least the gift cards to get what you want during this week's after-Christmas sales?

What are your favorite Christmas traditions? What do you have to do every year? What do you wish you didn't have to?

Christmas tunes
Christmas movies
Christmas cookies (which are just cookies but I don't make them any other time of the year!)
Christmas presentes
Christmas decorations
Christmas trees

Not so favs:
Crowds at the malls

Friday, December 23, 2011

Friday Recipe: Roast Leg of Lamb with Rosemary

In my family this is usually an Easter meal but this year we switched it up a bit. And it's always so delicious I wonder why we don't have it all the time! So this is the recipe I'm making this year for Christmas dinner. You?

Prep Time:15 Min
Cook Time:1 Hr 20 Min
Ready In:1 Day 1 Hr 35 Min

1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons prepared Dijon-style mustard
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3 cloves garlic, minced
5 pounds whole leg of lamb
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

In a small bowl, combine the honey, mustard, rosemary, ground black pepper, lemon zest and garlic. Mix well and apply to the lamb. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator overnight.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).
Place lamb on a rack in a roasting pan and sprinkle with salt to taste.
Bake at 450 degrees F (230 degrees C) for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and roast for 55 to 60 more minutes for medium rare. The internal temperature should be at least 145 degrees F (63 degrees C) when taken with a meat thermometer. Let the roast rest for about 10 minutes before carving.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 790 Total Fat: 55.4g Cholesterol: 224mg

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Excerpt: The Masque: A Hellfire Club Erotique

This is an excerpt from the start of chapter 2 for The Masque, the first in my Hellfire Club Erotique series.


The short man held a ledger and greeted her with a cordial nod and a slight bow. He held himself as if he owned these catacombs, the tilt of his head, the sharp look in his eye. Still, Olivia detected a hint of relief in his voice, as if he worried about her. Or Louise in this case. It had been hours since Olivia returned to the apartment, she’d long missed the final ball. Clearly he had expected her long before now.

“Good evening,” he said warmly. Your usual accommodations are ready for you. If you require anything else please do not hesitate to ask, Madame.”

The dichotomy of it all jarred her. One moment Olivia made her way through cold, dark alleyways and down ancient steps as the race of her heart echoed in her ears. Fear of discovery combined with the scuffling of rats and whatever other unknown creatures lurked in such places had her all but sprinting away. Then this massive door opened and the whole world changed.
Before her lay a world of the King’s court in manner and dress.

“Merci, Bernard.” Olivia’s words stumbled out as she placed him. Her aunt’s description had been most detailed, down to the mole near Bernard’s left ear.

With masque securely in place, Olivia walked by Bernard and his baroque desk, which would have been better suited in a Marquis’s estate rather than this dark and dank stone chamber. She held her head high as she sidestepped several members, wearing intricately painted masques also firmly in place, and walked through the arch of the entrance room into the main corridor.

People walked by her and nodded, some as formally dressed as if they did, indeed, attend the king’s court; others, Olivia noted, ate sumptuous pastries and meats the likes of which she hadn’t enjoyed in far too long. Tapestries covered stone walls and tall wrought iron candelabra illuminated the many passages leading in every direction.

Olivia tentatively walked down the corridor then stopped and took a moment to study the tapestries. Shocked, she blinked and leaned closer. Each beautifully weaved tapestry, well-preserved and still vibrant even in the candlelight, depicted a variety of sexual acts that left her awestruck. Heart racing anew, not with fear but with scandalous fascination, Olivia stared.
It took her several minutes to tear her eyes from the images, and even when she did they stayed with her, causing her breath to shorten.

As she made her way further down the path, careful not to look at any more tapestries, she heard unusual sounds from several antechambers. Her curiosity bade her to investigate. At a juncture, Olivia paused, glancing down the corridor she was supposed to take then in the direction of the anteroom. If she diverted from this path she might lose her way. Louise had only told her how to find her room from the entrance and had warned of the labyrinthine and endless corridors of Paris’s Hellfire Club.

Now available at Amazon and All Romance eBooks

New Release! The Masque: A Hellfire Club Erotique

And here it is! I'm pretty excited it's available before Christmas (eek--Christmas is next week!) Here's the blurb and cover, I'll post an excerpt later today.

Olivia Reynard must leave Paris tonight. It's the height of the French Revolution's Reign of Terror and as a nobleman's daughter, she knows it's a matter of time before she's sent to the guillotine. Fleeing to the notorious Hellfire Club, she soon finds a world of sexual pleasure she's never imagined.

Comte Sebastian de Courville has promised to help Olivia get out of Paris, but he didn't expect such instant attraction to the beautiful maiden. He wants to show her every pleasure known, but time is short and their lives are in ever increasing danger. And then there's his lover...

Julien Laruent has survived the treacherous streets of a Paris in turmoil. Now permanently ensconced in the Hellfire Club, he hasn't look back on that time. A dangerous man to have in one's bed, he took one look at Olivia and vowed to keep her safe.

But when old enemies exact vengeance and Madame Guillotine an ever present threat, will the three of them survive long enough to find love?


All Romance eBooks

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Wednesday Sexy Regency

Or why writing menage stories in the Regency era is so much fun. I'm not the only one. I once heard a comment that went something like The lack of the death of the Regency. It's too true. Even big mystery writer P.D. James has a new release (at 91 years of age!) called Death Comes to Pemberley.

But what attracts readers and writers to this time? And if it has so many more social restrictions, why is the Regency sexy? Amelia Grey, author of An Earl to Enchant, did a post on this for Love Romance Passion. In it she states in #7:

The love scene in a Regency is like silk and satin, a falling of clothes
so gentle and grand, it's like the reader is a part of the fabric that ties the scene together. There is a definite feeling in a Regency when the hero and heroine succumb to the moment they know they must be together. There is no greater element of sensuality and romance. Now, that moment we've been waiting for as our hero finally touches our heroine, we let out our breath and savor the feelings we get as we read onward.

This is very true, but on a deeper level, I think that it's also the eroticism of fooling society. The thumbing one's nose at the old gossiping biddies and having everything (and everyone!) you want without being ostracised from society. Or worse, put to death. Because same-sex sexual relations was punishable by death.

Photo from Regency Revisited header. I absolutely adore it! And it's so true. If you get the chance to take a peek around their site, please do so, they have gorgeous fabrics there.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Another Great Review

From Booked Up. 4 stars from RedHibiscus for Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale:

I could feel the attraction between Alix and Kane from the first moment they met...While Brent and Kane's relationship became closer and more loving everyday, their relationship with Alix became more distance...When the three of them finally begin their relationship, I could feel the love they had for each other, even as they prepared for the consequences.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Gold Star Review!

A wonderful review from Just Erotic Romance Reviews for Risqué: A Regenc Menage Tale

Holy smokes, Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale is an incredible book! Not usually one for historical romance novels, I was immediately transfixed by the characters in Risqué....Ms. Reed has a real talent for seduction of the senses, making the reader feel both involved in the outcome and highly aroused at her erotic prose. For all these reasons Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale gets the highest rating, a JERR Gold Star Award!

The Hellfire Club

Or as it was spelled in the day, The Hell-Fire Club. I like my way better. More 21st century than 18th.

What was the Hellfire Club? If you guessed a place for like-minded individuals to gather and indulge in all manner of sexual exploits, you'd be right. Half right. Because despite that, or because of it, the Club was also a place for political intrigue.

This is from The Victorian Web. No--I don't know why the Victorians have an article on the mid 1700s Hell-Fire Club, but their information condenses much of what I've found.

West Wycombe, a village in the Chiltern Hills, was where the Dashwood family owned its landed estate. Sir Francis Dashwood founded the "Order of the Knights of St. Francis of Wycombe" — better known as the Hellfire Club.

Below the mausoleum is the entrance to the West Wycombe caves, carved to look like the entrance to a Gothic church. The caves were enlarged by Sir Francis Dashwood in the 1750s in order to create work for the local men who were unemployed because of a succession of harvest failures. (As an aside, he couldn't have been all debauched if he willingly did this for his workers. He could have ignored their plight, after all.)

The chalk from the caves was used for building part of the road to London but Sir Francis also had the caves cut in intricate patterns. The caves crossed a stream of water known as the 'River Styx', a reference to the Greek mythological river of Hades, over which the souls of the dead were ferried by Charon.

Medmenham Abbey is situated on the River Thames between Hambleden and Hurley Locks. It was founded as a monastery by the Cistercians in 1200 but at the Dissolution of the Monasteries it passed into the hands of the Duffield Family. In the late eighteenth century, Francis Duffield granted a lease of Medmenham to Sir Francis Dashwood where he and his wealthy friends held the infamous 'Hell Fire Club' meetings and lived up to its motto Fay ce que voudres Do whatever you will.

The Hell Fire Club initially was based at Medmenham Abbey, which Sir Francis bought and converted into an erotic garden. The members of the Hell-Fire club took part in mock religious ceremonies and used masks and costumes to allow them to indulge in varying degrees of debauchery. Medmenham gained some notoriety so the Hell Fire club moved to a more secluded site at West Wycombe caves. Members of the club included Sir Francis Dashwood, the Earl of Sandwich, Thomas Potter (the son of the Archbishop of Canterbury), John Wilkes, William Hogarth, the Earl of Bute, the Marquis of Granby, the Prince of Wales, and possibly Benjamin Franklin and Horace Walpole.

It was alleged that the 'monks' took prostitutes down the Thames from London in barges to act as masked 'nuns'. The members of the Club also were accused of celebrating the Black Mass over the naked bodies of aristocratic ladies, one of whom was Lady Mary Montagu Wortley, the mother-in-law of the Earl of Bute.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday Recipe: Chocolate-Filled Crescents

Because who doesn't love chocolate-filled Crescent rolls?

Prep Time:5 Min
Ready In:25 Min

1 (8 ounce) can Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
Powdered sugar, if desired

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Separate dough into 8 triangles.
Place tablespoon of chocolate chips on wide end of each triangle. Roll up, starting at shortest side of triangle, rolling to opposite point. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake at 350 degrees F. for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 164 Total Fat: 9.3g Cholesterol: 0mg

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thinking of others during Christmas

I'm not talking about buying gifts for friends and family, but in the true sense of it's better to give than receive. There's a photo going around on facebook about necessity. I think it speaks very well for itself.

During this time, when stores are mobbed and tempers are short and shelves are nearing empty, remember our unemployeed and underemployed. Remember all those who can't afford a Christmas dinner or gifts for their children.

There are lots of excellent charities in need of donations and there's Toys for Tots donation dropoff locations run by the US Marines. If you want something more local, try your neighborhood Boys & Girls Club. If you're not in America, the UK has lots of local organizations such as Miller Homes and Everyday Hero UK.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Wednesday Regency

Georgette Heyer's Regency World.

The blurb says:
Georgette Heyer fans will delight in Jennifer Kloester’s definitive guide to her Regency world: the people, the shops, clubs and towns they frequented, the parties and seasons they celebrated, how they ate, drank, dressed, socialized, voted, shopped and drove. A fun read for any Heyer fan.

Well, I'm partly a Heyer fan. Mostly because I adore taking her Regency cliches (which she may have invented mind you) and twisting them. Because I'm sure a menage never occurred to Ms. Heyer, which is fine, but I do so love them.

I own this title both in eBook and print. It's got loads of history with Heyer novels as references tossed in. I enjoy reading about both--the history and the books. Included in this are fascinating tidbits about the period that are both obscure enough to enjoy and enjoyable enough to put in Regency books as extra background information.

Highly recommended for all Regency fans.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

eBook pricing 2

Yesterday I talked about publisher set pricing, what I would and wouldn't pay and a bit about the way royalties work. I got comments that talked about what people would pay, wouldn't, and what as an author, they would charge.

So today let's talk about what's worth the price. All being subjective, naturally, I think anything around $5.99 to $7.99 is reasonable, depending on length, quality of writing, how I enjoy the author's work, etc.

For instance, I'm not paying $5.99 for a story that's only 12,000 words. That seems excessive. But I will pay $5.99 for a story over 50,000 words. I'll even pay $7.99 for a 100,000 word story.

What do you think? Are you a self-pubbed author--what are you willing to set your prices at?

Monday, December 12, 2011

eBook pricing

I've recently read a lot about eBook pricing and whether publisher set prices are too high. Now I guess that depends on whether you're the taking a bigger chunk from the price publisher or the getting the lesser percentage author. I don't think publishers think about readers, though they really should considering without readers, the whole thing crumbles.

Being a reader, I like the lower priced eBooks. If a publisher thinks I'm going to pay $9.99 or higher for an eBook they're crazy. There are lovely brick and mortar places called libraries where I can borrow the book for free and return it for someone else to read and enjoy (or not as the case may be).

I'm not so attached to my Nook that I need to read everything this instant. Though that's a convenience I absolutely adore. Still, if I can show restraint for my physical book purchases then I can show that same restraint for my Nook purchases. Even if there are loads more eBooks I enjoy than print.

Over the summer there was a brouhaha over Harlequin's pricing and the measly percentage their authors get for their eBooks. Now most e-only publishers give between 35% and 40% (give or take a percentage) for sales. Harlequin offers the same rate as on their print books, about 5-8%. This is from Bob Mayer's blog, which I also read reguraly and enjoy. Harlequin, author royalty rates, non-compete: Business reality but is it smart?

Anyone else see the discrepancy there? Plus I've read on Kristine Kathryn Rusch's blog, The Business Rusch, a rather informative bit (April 2011) on Royalty Statements Update. This is her personal experience, but read it, read the comments, and laugh over major publisher's wonderment at the changing world of publishing. There are major gaps in the Big Publishers royalty statements.

Then there's this from the Wall Street Journal...and how little it surprised me that 1) it barely made a bleep in the publishing news I read and 2) that it exists at all.

Justice Department Confirms E-Book Pricing Probe
The publishing companies named in the EU investigation included Hachette Livre, owned by Lagardère SCA; News Corp.'s HarperCollins Publishers Inc.; Simon & Schuster of CBS Corp.; Pearson PLC's Penguin; and Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holzbrinck.

What are your thoughts? How much would you pay for an eBook. Now granted, I know there are always exceptions. That favorite author, the best bestseller this year, etc. But for all us voracious readers, what's the eBook pricing limit?

Friday, December 9, 2011

Friday recipe: Slow Cooker Mexican Style Meat

Charley's Slow Cooker Mexican Style Meat
I used ground beef (because I had it) and cooked it on low for 5 hours and it came out just fine. It was also frozen when I started, though I'm not sure if that had anything to do with anything.

Prep Time: Cook Time: Ready In:
30 Min 10 Hrs 10 Hrs 30 Min

1 (4 pound) chuck roast (I used frozen lean ground beef)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 1/4 cups diced green chile pepper
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 (5 ounce) bottle hot pepper sauce (I used medium salsa)
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Trim the roast of any excess fat, and season with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place meat in hot skillet, and brown meat quickly on all sides.

Transfer the roast to a slow cooker, and sprinkle onion over meat. Season with chile peppers, chili powder, cayenne pepper, hot pepper sauce, and garlic powder. Add enough water to cover 1/3 of the roast.

Cover, and cook on High for 6 hours, checking to make sure there is always at least a small amount of liquid in the bottom. Reduce heat to Low, and continue cooking for 2 to 4 hours, or until meat is totally tender and falls apart.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 260 Total Fat: 19.1g Cholesterol: 69mg

Thursday, December 8, 2011

I've joined a new social networking site

And I have very little clue how to work it. It's called Triberr. TWO Rs for those counting.

This was yesterday. I've barely looked around it, have no real idea what is involved, and have seemingly been locked out of the account.

For clarification, I don't blame Tribber. The developer emailed me a couple times to help me through this, but since I tried to log in at exactly the wrong time (during that one key second of the final install of an upgrade) it messed everything up.

I'm excited to start using Tribber, but will patiently wait for everything to be sorted out. I have every confidence it will happen shortly. But until then, I'll use twitter as I always have. Or have for the last month + I've been on Twitter.

Until then, if you want to know more, try here and here. One warning: There's a lot of white space between the top banner and the content. Don't know why, it took me a while to realize the page loaded correctly.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Masque: A Hellfire Club Erotique

Finished editing The Masque: A Hellfire Club Erotique and have sent it off. I'm excited for this one, it's the start of a new series, it's set in a different time and place than I normally write. Here's the blurb, what do you think? I'll post an excerpt later in the week.

Olivia Reynard must leave Paris tonight. It's the height of the French Revolution's Reign of Terror and as a nobleman's daughter, she knows it's a matter of time before she's sent to the guillotine. Fleeing to the notorious Hellfire Club, she soon finds a world of sexual pleasure she's never imagined.

Comte Sebastian de Courville has promised to help Olivia get of Paris, but he didn't expect such instant attraction to the beautiful maiden. He wants to show her every pleasure known, but time is short and their lives are in ever increasing danger. And then there's his lover...

Julien Laruent has survived the treacherous streets of a Paris in turmoil. Now permanently ensconced in the Hellfire Club, he hasn't look back on that time. A dangerous man to have in one's bed, he took one look at Olivia and vowed to keep her safe.

But when old enemies exact vengeance and Madame Guillotine an ever present threat, will the three of them survive long enough to find love?

Monday, December 5, 2011


It's the first full week of December. And yes, I know not everyone celebrates Christmas, but with all the hoopla, it's hard not getting caught up in the season.

So...what are you all doing to stay alive? I mean sane. Yes, that's what I mean!

Friday, December 2, 2011

First review for Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale

This is from Coffee Beans & Love Scenes, a site I frequent. It's a truly wonderful review from Susan, a winner from last weekend's Black Friday Blog Hop. She won a copy of Risqué, but I swear on every book I plan to write, that's where our relationship ended! Though I would like to thank her for not only reviewing the book, which takes time and effort, but for saying such lovely things about it.

You can read the review in its entirety here, but here's a snippet.

Living in Regency England wouldn't have been bad if delicious rogues like Kane Huntington and Brent Rowan were part of the picture. Widow Alexandria Prescott returned to the Ton a year after her husband died hoping to slide back into society as a respectful woman. But thanks to a wonderful writer, Kristabel Reed, the widow found happiness and kink in a time when sexual prowess would have been a huge no-no.

Friday Recipe: Veggie Chili

Slow Cooker Veggie Chili
I don't use they're little brand names. Not these at least. I stick with what I like (all organic) and it tastes just fine. But this, as with most of my recipies, comes from and apparently this one likes these brandnames. *shrug* To each cook her own!

Prep Time: Cook Time: Ready In:
15 Min 4 Hrs 4 Hrs 30 Min

PAM® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
1 (14.5 ounce) can Hunt's® Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes with Garlic, undrained
1 (8 ounce) can Hunt's® Tomato Sauce-No Salt Added
1 (15 ounce) can Ranch Style® Beans, undrained
1 (15 ounce) can Van Camp's® Red Kidney Beans, drained, rinsed
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup frozen whole kernel corn
2 medium carrots, sliced
1 tablespoon Gebhardt® Chili Powder
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper

Spray inside of 4-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Place remaining ingredients in slow cooker; stir to combine.
Cover; cook on HIGH 1-1/2 to 2 hours or on LOW 3 to 4 hours. (As I was at work, I did low)

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 180 Total Fat: 0.3g Cholesterol: 0mg

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Keeping up with the months

In this case I feel the need to say What? It's December already?! When did that happen?

Then comes the panic: I have deadlines! I have Christmas shopping to do! I have baking to do! I have less than 25 days to do all this in!

Then comes reality: Just like every other year there are things that are going by the wayside. Whichever side that happens to be.

  • Christmas cards? Probably not

  • Christmas breads? Well, I'll have cookies. Isn't that enough?

  • Days spent strolling down sidewalks, window shopping? The sad reality is that no matter how I support buying local (which I wholeheartedly do) that, too, may fall to the wayside in favor of online shopping. Luckily, many of those stores also have sites. And I intend to shop there, first!

Good news? I'm motivated to start shopping earlier next year. And this year, I plan to substitute more gifts with more donations. Like to the National Parks Service.

Now about those first Hellfire Club Erotique story is soclose to being done! A good edit and a quick copy edit and it'll be set for publication. Then it's a 50,000 word Regency Ménage Tale tentatively titled Covet. That deadline is New Year's Eve. Gulp.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

France and history

I tend to write in England during the Regency, as opposed to other countries during the same time period. Would that still be considered the Regency Era even if it's not in England? Semantics, I'm sure.

Still, in this new series, The Hellfire Club spans the globe. As a real and semi-legitimate organization, it's entirely conceivable they truly did. After all, sex and politics is hardly unique to England, the Regency, or the modern era.

In writing these first two Hellfire Club Erotiques, I used my setting as France during the revolution. The Masque takes place during the height of the Reign of Terror, and The Escape just before that. I'm finding it incredibly interesting, and learning more French history than I ever knew.

It's what I love about writing historicals. No matter how well you think you know your subject, a little research and it's an entirely different world.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Weekend winners!

The Blog Hop Black Friday winner is: Callie!

Friday's winner of Risque: A Regency Menage Tale is: J9 (comment #8)
Friday's winner of a $10 Amazon gift card: Armenia (comment #79)

Saturday's winner of Risque: A Regency Menage Tale is: Harley
Saturday's winner of a $10 Amazon gift card is: Laura

Sunday's winner of Risque: A Regency Menage Tale is: tammy ramey
Saturday's winner of a $10 Amazon gift card is: marybelle

I'll email everyone sometime today with their choices and gifts. Anyone know if I can send an Amazon gift card via email? Seems like I should be able to. (Done it thru B&N but not Amazon).

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Favorite Things

Your turn! What are some of your favorite gifts? That special memory that still makes you smile?

  • The Best Christmas Ever? Course, if you have kids, that might be every year!:)

  • If you could celebrate Christmas anywhere, where would it be?

  • Would you ever shop on Black Friday?

  • What do you think of all these big box stores opening Thanksgiving evening? For the record, I was home on my couch after eating entirely too much at Thanksgiving dinner. I feel sorry for those forced to work after stuffing themselves. I suppose a job is a job but where do we draw the line?
Seduction of a Proper Lady: A Regecy Ménage Tale 1/2 price this weekend at All Romance eBooks! Actually, all my books are 1/2 off so be sure to check them out!

Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale (1 winner per day of 3-day weekend) and a chance for a $10 Amazon gift card (1 overall winner based on comments from 3-day weekend in addition to Frday's overall blog hop winner).

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Gift giving

I'm a big fan of speical gifts, homemade I suppose, mostly because a lot of people I know are instant gratification people: See, Want, Buy. Makes gift giving difficult. I'm not talking knitting a sweater no one will wear. I wouldn't know how to knit a scarf let alone anything more complicated.

*Plant cuttings from your favorite houseplant planted in a beautiful pot
*Tea/coffee in their favorite flavors from a 'green' business
*Donation to favorite charity or 'adopt' a wildlife animal
*A year's membership to the National Parks where they can see all 350+ wonders of America
*A service gift: year's worth of car washes, hair cuts, or massages (pst-I'd LOVE a year's worth of massages!)

Seduction of a Proper Lady: A Regecy Ménage Tale 1/2 price this weekend at All Romance eBooks! Actually I think all my books are 1/2 priced so check them out!

Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale (1 winner per day of 3-day weekend) and a chance for a $10 Amazon gift card (1 overall winner based on comments from 3-day weekend in addition to the winner from yesterday).

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday Tips, Tricks, and 1/2 priced books!

If you can't or don't want to indulge in CyberMonday from the safety and warmth of our own computer (which I enjoy very much don't get me wrong!), my personal tips to survive the day are learned the old fashioned way. Where am I this morning? Out shopping. Yes. Yes I am. I'm out and about on this fine Black Friday.

Just remember the one simple rule for any holiday season: It's the spirit of the season! And no...that spirit isn't consumerism. It's giving.

*Dress in layers and get there early!
*Do be respectful of others, because really, it's an item and frankly that item isn't worth beatings, jail time, or death.
*Do try to get the limited time only prices (the before noon stuff) but be polite about it. Sales people are more likely to say YES to a customer not arguing with them or calling them names.
*Do remember that it's not the cashier's fault you're a crazy person. This is only their job, be kind to them-they had to get there early, too, and those thousand people behind you? They're even crazier than you are. And this poor cashier has to deal with you AND them AND the other 999 people just like them.
*Do remember that there is an increasing number of people unable to afford the season: Toys for Tots and Feeding America are 2 of my favorites.


*Don't expect to get that fabulous whatever at the unbelievably low price but try anyway.
*Don't circle for an hour trying to find a parking spot-not only is the walk good for you but you don't want to be that fool circling the parking lot for an hour when you could be getting those fabulous deals!
*Don't throw a fit if that sales person doesn't give you the sale price because you missed the time frame.
*Don't fight with your fellow shoppers. Sure, it'd be cool and all to get the 50" flat screen for $100 but fighting over the last one with someone who may be crazier than you? Please see above mentioned jail, death, and beatings...
Seduction of a Proper Lady: A Regecy Ménage Tale 1/2 price this weekend at All Romance eBooks!

4.5 Stars from Just Erotic Romance Reviews
The sexual chemistry between Braedon and Ethan is very subtle and on the surface you only see they are very good friends. When Laurel completes this triad the chemistry is smoking hot. The sexual action throughout the story is hot and spicy regardless if it was M/M, M/F, or M/F/M the sex was just awesome.

4 Cups of Coffee from Coffee Time Romance
Ms. Reed takes her characters to the height of passion, and as the reader you are allowed the opportunity to enjoy every moment of their journey.

Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale (1 winner per day of 3-day weekend) and a chance for a $10 Amazon gift card (1 overall winner based on comments from 3-day weekend).

- Cassandra Carr: copy of either of my two current releases, Talk to Me or Head Games

- Kristabel Reed: back list copy of one of her stories and then on her own blog a $10 GC plus a copy of her newest release, Risque: A Regency Menage Tale
- Lucy Felthouse: back list copy of any of her single-title books
- Cari Quinn: back list copy of one of her books
- Leigh Elwood: two back list copies of her books
- Natasha Blackthorne: copies of her two Regency era novellas: Grey's Lady and Waltz of Seduction
- Amber Kallyn: e-copy of Dragos 1
- Camryn Rhys: Kindle copies of The Barn Dance and Off the Record-Foodie Erotic Romances
- Lissa Matthews: two of her back list books
- Misa Buckley: an e-copy of Ironhaven and To Reach the Dawn
- Lacey Wolfe: a copy of Amber's Muse
- Courtney Sheets: a $25 GC to Ravenous Romance and a copy of Kona Warrior-PDF
- Sara Brookes: an e-copy of one of my back list books
- Cynthia Arsuaga: a copy of an e-book, and on her own blog five book charm book tethers
- Louisa Bacio: .pdf copy of my first book in The Vampire, The Witch & The Werewolf series, and on her own blog a $10 certificate to Ravenous Romance, and each commenter will also be entered to win a Goody Bag of new Orleans treats
- Malia Mallory: one copy each of The ABC's of Erotica and Santa's Back Door Baby
- Cynthia Eden: a copy of Angel of Darkness (either print or digital)
- Carrie Ann Ryan: an e-copy of The Alpha's Path
- Jacquie Rogers: a Smashwords coupon for Faery Merry Christmas, plus on her own blog, a free copy of Much Ado About Marshals
- KT Grant a print copy of Sweet and Sinful and an ebook copy of her next release, Xavier's Loving Arms

So what are the rules? Simple: visit as many of the blogs as you can and leave a comment for the blog owner. For every comment, you'll get one entry into the grand-prize drawing. Be sure to leave your e-mail address with every comment so we can find you if you win! And don't forget that several blog owners are giving away prizes specific to their blog, too!

One winner will be chosen on Saturday morning using I will contact that person about the Kindle Fire and then each blog owner with a prize will contact the winner themselves to arrange delivery of said prize. Questions? Contact me at AuthorCassandraCarr AT gmail DOT com.

Good luck and Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Friday Recipes: Thanksgiving Desserts

Sure, I can post the cheesecake recipe I made for Thanksgiving, but everyone makes cheesecake. Or pumpkin pie, which we also had but which I didn't make. Instead I'm posting Boston Cream Dessert Cups, which I didn't make for Thanksgiving, but which are delicious! (If you've noticed, I only post the delicious things I make. There are plenty things I do make which I wouldn't make again.)

Prep Time:30 Min
Cook Time:40 Min
Ready In:2 Hrs 40 Min

1 (16 ounce) package refrigerated sugar cookie dough
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup white sugar (non-bleached)
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon milk (organic)
2 eggs
1 (3.5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
1 (16 ounce) container prepared chocolate frosting

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line 24 muffin cups with paper muffin liners. Divide sugar cookie dough into each muffin cup.

Bake in the preheated oven until the cookie dough softens and spreads across the bottom of each muffin cup, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

Beat the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar, flour, and milk with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth. Beat the first egg into the cream cheese mixture until completely blended, then beat in the last egg. Mix in the instant pudding mix until just incorporated. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the cream cheese filling into each muffin cup. Return muffin cups to the oven and bake until the filling is set, about 25 minutes. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes then remove the desserts.

Remove the foil cover of the prepared frosting and microwave until softened, about 30 seconds. Stir frosting until smooth, then spread about one tablespoon of frosting onto each dessert cup. Refrigerate until set, about 1 hour.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 270 Total Fat: 15.2g Cholesterol: 46mg

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner

I'm in the countdown mode now. Luckily, I'm not hosting Thanksgiving in my house this year but I am responsible for soup, cheesecake, and one other appetiser I haven't decided on yet.

Saturday I did a marathon shopping trip to the grocery store where I tried not to deal with other crazed people shopping for Thanksgiving dinner. it mostly went over well. Mostly. The sad fact was that I had many of the items I needed but there are always those few that either you never realize you finished off (and didn't replace!) or don't carry at all to begin with.

Not sure about what other appetiser I'm going to make. Must be traditional (or at lease semi) and must be delicious.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Friday Recipes: Sausage Barley Soup

And this is why I have a crockpot. Because remembering to stir this occassionally for 4 hours? So not happening!

Prep Time:15 Min
Cook Time:4 Hrs
Ready In:4 Hrs 15 Min

1 pound Italian sausage (Again bought at the local butcher's shop!)
1/2 cup diced onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 (48 fluid ounce) can chicken broth
1 large carrot, sliced
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach
1/4 cup uncooked pearl barley

In a skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage, onion, and garlic until the sausage is evenly brown. Season with Italian seasoning. Remove from heat, and drain.

In a slow cooker, mix the sausage mixture, chicken broth, carrot, spinach, and barley.
Cover, and cook 4 hours on High or 6 to 8 hours on Low.

Thursday, November 17, 2011


OK, yes. I may grumble that stores put up their Christmas decorations entirely too early, and seriously--Santa the weekend after Halloween? Come on, we're in an economic downturn (commonly know as much worse but I won't get into that here) not stupid. Besides, some traditions need to remain the same during the ever increasing commercialization of a season of giving.

But Christmas music has started! I'm overjoyed. I love Christmas music and look forward every year to hearing it on the radio. Let the caroling begin!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

This year's TV crop

I started watching several new shows this season, and had really looked forward to the return on others.

  • Pan Am: showed promise but seemed more of an historical rehash of the 60s. I stopped watching after 4 episodes.

  • Terra Nova (after the first episode): picked up but seems off somehow. I'm not sure how, it's like I've seen this scifi show before in a great many science fiction shows I used to watch. Nothing new there. Off the DVR record list.

  • Person of Interest: One episode. One episode and I couldn't take it. Seriously, with all that technology anyone could stalk another person and save and/or arrest them.

  • Grimm: Is it just me or is the heir to the Grimm legacy a petulant child? Seriously, you're not 16 year old Buffy trying to have a normal date and not die at the hands of the Master. You're a grown-up cop. Shut up and deal. Plus I can't stand the lying-to his cop partner, to his nearly fiancee. Ugh.

  • Once Upon a Time: Far different from Grimm, this still hold my attention.

  • Hell on Wheels: I have a secret love for the Wild West. Adored Deadwood and will give this more than one (pretty good) episode before passing judgement.

Hawaii Five-O: What happened? Honestly, what happened between the end of last season and the start of this one? Did the writers forget the rapport between the characters? Did they toss out all character growth? And please, please I beg you-get rid of nameless blonde chick. She's one-dimensional and adds nothing to the show.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Excerpt Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale

Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale

From Chapter 2:

Stretching languidly in bed, Alix finally decided to open her eyes and face the day. Not that she was in any rush to leave the bed.

Kane’s scent still faintly surrounded her, even though it had been a full day and night since their encounter. She shivered in remembered pleasure, fingers drifting over her breasts. He hadn’t left immediately after she’d collapsed in his arms. She didn’t recall him moving, but Alix did recall waking to his fingers doing delicious things to her body.

He hadn’t teased then, but had built her orgasm so swiftly she climaxed from his mouth and fingers alone. They hadn’t the time to indulge in all she’d wished to, and Alix frowned now as she thought of Kane.

She still wanted him. Wanted to tie him to the bed and be tied by him. Wondered if he would take her from behind, teach her that particular pleasure she longed to experience.

Sighing, she turned her head into the pillow and breathed deeply, annoyed with her foolishness. She’d told her maid, Marguerite, not to bother with the bed linens. Alix sighed again, and shrugged it all off. In the privacy of her bedroom, she could be just as young and sentimental as she wanted.

Not that she’d ever let anyone other than Marguerite see that side of her. Emily might suspect her sentimental streak, but her closest friend would never tell a soul.

Kane had left just before the break of dawn, striding arrogantly through the servants’ entrance in the rear of her St. James townhouse. A practiced rake, without doubt. Alix could appreciate his skill in stealth as well as his skill in a great many other things.

With one final stretch, Alix rose and walked naked across her room to the looking glass. Her vibrant auburn hair framed her face in a riot of curls, and the wanton look about her lingered. But the red love bites adorning her rose-tinted skin caught her attention.

Yesterday she’d received friends in her own parlor, but today she had several places to visit. She’d have to wear a higher neckline than usual if she intended to engage socially these next few nights. A bother, certainly, but not without its most pleasurable cause.

Dismissing her reflection, Alix tugged her robe on and went about her morning rituals. It was another two hours before Marguerite had her dressed and presentable for Emily’s political gathering. And she wondered if Mr. Huntington would be in attendance.

As she descended the stairs, mind still on the delectable Mr. Huntington, Beckett extended a silver tray topped by a sealed missive.

“Good day, madam,” he said with a slight bow. “A messenger delivered this note an hour ago, and the carriage is waiting for you just outside, as you requested.”

Alix took the note with a nod and a smile. “Thank you, Beckett. I’ll be out momentarily.” She dismissed the servant with another smile and diverted from her intended destination into her parlor. She closed the pocket doors behind her and stared at the linen paper, folded precisely down the center. There was no indication as to the sender and a simple wax rose sealed the note.

Opening the missive, Alix sat on the settee. She had no idea why she wanted privacy to read a simple letter, but instinct drove her to the parlor where none would disturb her.

I remember the feel of you; my tongue remembers the exquisite taste of you. Your moans and sighs were the sweetest of sounds, the most intoxicating.
Do not neglect this servant of yours.

It wasn’t signed, but Alix had no need for a signature. Kane. Heart racing both in need and excitement, Alix hurried from the parlor to her study. She quickly inked a reply and sealed it. Instructing Beckett to find a street urchin and have the note delivered immediately, Alix exited the house, the thrum of anticipation humming through her body.

I imagine your next visit, perhaps tied to my bed with a silken scarf. Under my control, my power, so I may devour every delicious inch of you.

Now available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, All Romance eBooks, and Ravenous Romance.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Thoughts on Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale

With it out now, I've been thinking about the story. It's not my normal ménage tale--there's a lot of coupleness (m/f, m/m, m/f) but I believe the emotional plot that drives the story stands.

It's taken me a long time to get this story just right, but I feel the end product reflects the story that needed to be told with these characters. Underneath it all is a layer of trust that doesn't come easily to any of them, Alix, Kane, or Brent. They want pleasure, they want fun, but anything more than that is dangerously scary territory.

I'll post some exerpts this week, but for now here's the blurb:
Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale

The young widow Mrs. Alexandria Prescott enjoys her untainted reputation. In private, however, her sexual appetites know no bounds. An encounter with Kane Huntington changes that. Alix finds she can't help herself or her desire to test his notorious reputation and invites him to prove his mettle in her bedroom.

They enjoy their pleasurable games until jealousy's green eyes come between them in the form of Brent, the young Earl of Rowan. Unwilling to let themselves be bested in this game of passions, Alix and Kane use Brent as a pawn in their maneuvers against each other.

However, Brent has other ideas about his future and what—and who—it'll involve. He skillfully turns the tables on them and, despite the games they play, creates an image of the perfect ménage. But things never go as planned and when their secret is threatened will the three of them run? Or will they be clever and strong enough, to hide their love in plain sight?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Friday Recipe:Vegetable Soup with Black-Eyed Peas and Grilled Chicken

Yes, it'w winter and yes that means more crockpot & soup recipes. This week is a delicious veggie soup. Delicious! It's a little hard to remember to stir it occassionally but alas, not much burned :) Now this recipe was sponsored by Campbell's Soup but I'm sure whether you use their products or not I'm sure it doesn't matter.

Prep Time:15 Min
Cook Time:55 Min
Ready In:1 Hr 10 Min

3/4 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast (bought fresh at the local butcher!)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, diced
3 large carrots, diced
2 medium parsnips, diced
1 bulb fennel, trimmed and diced
4 cups Swanson® Chicken Broth (regular, Natural Goodness™ or Certified Organic)
1 (15 ounce) can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Lightly oil the grill rack and heat the grill to medium. Grill the chicken for 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through, turning the chicken halfway through cooking. Remove the chicken to a cutting surface. Let cool for 5 minutes. Cut into strips. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a 6-quart saucepot over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, parsnips and fennel. Cook for 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add the broth and heat to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 30 minutes or until the vegetables are very tender.

Stir in the chicken, peas and parsley and heat through. Season to taste. Divide the soup mixture among 8 serving bowls.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 183 Total Fat: 4.8g Cholesterol: 22mg

Veteran's Day

Thank you to all those who served, who are serving, and who will serve.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Got the cover!

Isn't it gorgeous?? I love it! And I love the fact that it mirrors the theme of Seduction of a Proper Lady cover.
Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale

The young widow Mrs. Alexandria Prescott enjoys her untainted reputation. In private, however, her sexual appetites know no bounds. She finds a fitting partner in the notorious Kane Huntington, but when the jealous young Earl of Rowan discovers their game, will he expose them, or join them?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Encouragement: Pass it on

I think that's a commercial but alas. It's true. In trying to find a cool picture for my post the other day (couldn't find one that sized correctly which annoys me-stupid new blogger) I found this.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not the kind of person who thinks sitting back and letting the universe do all the work will give you anything but bedsores, but I do believe that positive thinking helps.

It helps get you through the day, it helps put things in perspective, and it definitely helps with goal setting.

So think positively today!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

2nd Tuesday of November

Traditionally voting day in America. No, it's not a presidental election year. But does that really matter? No matter where you are (even if it's not in America and you don't vote today) you should vote whenever an election is held.

It's your vote that counts for change. Use it. It's your strongest voice.

Monday, November 7, 2011

November goals

Sure, it's the 7th...and yeah, there was nearly an entire week last week worth of November. What's your point?

My goals for the month of November:

Finish The Escape: A Hellfire Club Erotique

Finish The Masque: A Hellfire Club Erotique

Completely plot Covet: A Regency Ménage Tale

Survive Thanksgiving

What do you plan for this month?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Friday Recipe: Potato Soup

Tis the season to break out the crock pot and make some delicious soups and stews! I wasn't going to, after all October had been rather nice...until Halloween weekend that is. And then I decided it was time. From where I get the majority of my recipes.

Prep Time: Cook Time: Ready In:
30 Min 3 Hrs 10 Min 3 Hrs 40 Min

3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (you can try turkey bacon but I prefer the taste of real bacon)
4 red potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1/4 cup butter
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup milk (I use 2% organic)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour (non-bleached cause who needs bleach in their food?)
3 cups milk
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons seasoned salt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes (I use black pepper)
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
chives for garnish (optional-I don't do this, not a fan of chives)

Preheat a large slow cooker by turning it to the High setting and covering with the lid.
Place the cut-up potatoes in a microwave safe bowl, and microwave on High for about 8 minutes, until the potatoes are cooked and steaming hot.

While the potatoes are cooking, place the butter in the preheated slow cooker, and cook and stir the onions and garlic for about 5 minutes, until the onions turn golden. Stir in 1/2 cup of milk, and whisk in the flour until smooth. Gradually whisk in the remaining 3 cups of milk, and let the mixture come to a simmer in the slow cooker. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until the soup begins to thicken.

Stir in the hot cooked potatoes, crumbled bacon, sour cream, Cheddar cheese, Parmesan cheese, seasoned salt, parsley, red pepper flakes, celery salt, and dried basil. Stir to mix the soup well, reduce the slow cooker setting to Low, cover, and cook for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with chives and serve.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 429 Total Fat: 23.5g Cholesterol: 61mg

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Listening to readers

I do-listen that is.

Often I hear how authors refuse to read reader reviews because they only like the good ones & refuse to read the bad ones. OK, total agreement there!

But the irony there is that as a reader the first reviews I go to are the bad ones--are they simply complaining about the price? Was there a problem with delivery? Basically, are these complaints not about the book but something else? Is the bad review: This book sucks but with no backup to it?
Those are ignorable reviews. Nothing you can do about them and any reader scrolling through the reviews can see what they are for themselves.

Now the constructive criticism reviews: Those I love!

And those are the ones I listen to. In the year I've been seriously writing (concentrating on writing as opposed to letting other things interfere) I've found that no matter the level of erotica, the details, the description, that what I'm writing is still a romance. And people who read romances, be them sweet, sensual, or ménage, want the connection between characters. They want that love match-m/m, f/f, m/f/f, m/f/m, m/f, it doesn’t matter.

Love is love and let's face it. I'm writing romance. an erotic romance, a ménage romance, but a romance.

Now just because I feel that a critque is constructive it doesn't mean I'll alter my writing style to accomodate that one critique. It does mean I'll take it into consideration. I certainly hope that as time progresses my writing simply gets stronger and stronger. While I write erotica, it doesn't mean that the story aspect of the erotica is any less engaging than the sexual aspect.

So yes, I listen to my readers. And that's the reason it's taken me over a week to go through copy edits for Risqué my new Regency Ménage Tale. Because I want to make sure the level of emotional connection between characters is present, believable, and deep enough to show their love for each other.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Social networking

I did it. Broke down and made a Twitter account. @kristabelreed for those looking. It's hard keeping up with blog, facebook, AND twitter, but the social networks have made it easier. They've connected each other, or made it possible to connect my networks. Whatever.

So my Twitter posts show up on my Facebook account, my Blog posts pop up on both Twitter and Facebook (I think...) Did I miss a connection? Probably but it doesn't matter, they're all everywhere. As far as I know.

Is this a good thing or a bad one? I can't tell, but I've met some great people on all three of these outlets, have found wonderful authors and their stories, and have made myself known. And isn't that the point of it all?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Editing and Coldness

Spent the weekend doing edits on Risque, my new Regency ménage. In reading through (and changing back deleted words from the copy editor that really made the sentence work) I realized a few crutial things:

1: Not enough character development in the opening chapters
2: I should do this all in one sitting-my eyes cross
3: Sex in the opening chapters is great but without emotion it's nothing more than porn.
4: I LIKE plot with my sex. I like reading about characters and why they sleep with one character over another, why they fall in love with one man or two and whay makes it all work
5: Writing a love match ménage where 3 people fall in love with each other as well as want each other

But it's all finished and sent out. Hopefully I'll have a cover this week!

Monday, October 31, 2011

New review

A lovely review from Coffee Time Romance Reviews for Seduction of a Proper Lady-4 steaming cups of coffee!

You can read the whole review here, but here's the gist of it. :)

Ms. Reed takes her characters to the height of passion, and as the reader you are allowed the opportunity to enjoy every moment of their journey.

And Happy Halloween! What's your favorite horror movie? And I'm not talking gratuitous blood/slash like Saw 1-100.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Friday Recipe: Pulled Chicken Crescents

Yes it was posted on by Pillsbury. Do I care? No. Is it delicious? Yes. Would I recommend it? Absolutely!

Prep Time: 10 Min
Cook Time: 20 Min
Ready In: 30 Min

1 (8 ounce) can Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
1/4 cup barbecue sauce
1/3 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 egg, beaten
Separate dough into 8 triangles.
In bowl, mix chicken and barbecue sauce. Spoon chicken mixture onto short end of each triangle; sprinkle each with 1 teaspoon of the cheese. Roll up loosely as directed on can. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Brush with egg; sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake at 375 degrees F 12 to 15 minutes.

Nutritional Information
Amount Per Serving Calories: 187 Total Fat: 9.9g Cholesterol: 46mg

Thursday, October 20, 2011

And it's flu season

Seriously? Already? I'm barely over allergy season.

So who's had a flu shot (me), who refuses (several coworkers which means I'll probably end up sick anyway), and who already has the flu (an aunt of mine who did get the shot-but she was laid low for only 24 hours)?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Hellfire Club series

It's not like this is a new thing, but I'm currently in the process of plotting a shorter Hellfire Club story, set just before Masque, in Paris during the revolution. This one, however, will be free. Marketing strategy? Yes, but I also think it's a good idea.

I like free! Who doesn't?

This will allow readers to sample my work in a complete story and then decide if I'm worth the price. I certainly hope the answer is yes, but I understand everyone is different and likes different things. It really is in the hands of the reader!

I'll post the second it's available for download!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Romantic cliches

It's true, there are plenty of them. What are your favorites and least "If I see this again I'll scream" ones?

I'll start:


You didn't come after me

Absolute Least:

I didn't realize I was really having sex but thought it was all a dream.

Monday, October 17, 2011

French Revolution

My newest story is set during the height of the Reign of Terror of the French Revolution. It lasted from September 5, 1793 to July 2, 1794 and saw anywhere between 16,000 and 40,000 killed.

The most notable story about the revolution (La Grande Révolution) is The Scarlet Pimpernel Baroness Emmuska Orczy. Sir Percy Blakeney, baronet, and the "League of the Scarlet Pimpernel". Percy risks life, limb, and head to rescue French nobles destined for Madame Guillotine.

It's romantic, it's adventurous, and it's theatrical--all hallmarks of a great story. I prefer the 1934 version with Leslie Howard, Merle Oberon, and Raymond Massey rather than the TV series from the 2000s.

Does Masque have anything to do with The Scarlet Pimpernel? Yes and takes place during the same era, but there are no dashing English noblemen riding to the rescue across The English Channel to whisk away doomed Frenchmen.

What it does have is sex, menage goodness, love, protection, and terror in escaping Paris before the mob can find them and guillotine.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Today Lucy Felthouse has a new release, Weekend at Wilderhope Manor. Here's a bit about it!

When Stephanie and Jenny go to a Murder Mystery Halloween weekend at Wilderhope Manor, they’re expecting fun and games. But following creaky floorboards, spooky noises and an alarming encounter in the Manor’s grounds, the girls begin to wonder if there’s more to Wilderhope Manor than meets the eye. As they find frequent comfort in one another’s arms – and their bed – will the girls discover what’s causing the bumps in the night, or will they run scared?
The car trundled up the long driveway, the crunching of gravel beneath tyres the only sound as Stephanie and her girlfriend, Jenny, peered out of the windows at their surroundings.
Even at dusk the tree-lined driveway was impressive with perfectly maintained parkland, spanning for acres on either side of it. As Stephanie steered the Fiesta around a bend in the track, they both gasped. Their destination, Wilderhope Manor, had come into view and it was stunning. The Tudor style property was huge, with no less than three frontages visible from where they were. Chimneys with intricately built patterns jutted into the darkening sky, with tangles of ivy climbing parts of the manor, giving the place an appearance that was both beautiful and foreboding.
Presently, the driveway opened out into a gravelled area, which as far as Stephanie could tell, doubled as a car park for the weekend. Stephanie manoeuvred into a spot between two vehicles and killed the engine. As she turned to Jenny, she jumped, startled. Her girlfriend had leaned in close, making a scary face with her hands mimicking claws.
“Are you ready to be scared out of your wits, young lady?” Jenny rasped, wiggling her eyebrows and fingers theatrically.
Stephanie shoved her playfully, laughing. “Come on, you silly cow. It’s a murder mystery weekend, not a monster hunt. There will be no ghosts, ghouls or vampires involved.”
Stephanie got out of the car and closed the door. She’d already popped open the boot and started unloading their bags before Jenny appeared alongside her, pouting petulantly.
“But it’s Halloween tomorrow,” Jenny insisted. “Anything could happen. The veil between the living and dead will be at its thinnest, and this place is meant to be swarming with ghosts.”
“If you say so, sweetheart,” she replied, rolling her eyes. She was used to Jenny’s crazy beliefs by now. “Grab your bags and let’s get inside. It’s cold. You got the tickets?”
Jenny nodded, brandishing her handbag in response. Jenny picked up her overnight bag as Stephanie slammed the boot lid before locking the car, then followed her toward the grand entrance to Wilderhope Manor.
* * *
A little while later, they were installed in their room. They’d each been handed a “Welcome Pack” by the staff member who had attended to them at Reception, which consisted of their itinerary and instructions for the weekend.
As they unpacked, she voiced one of the thoughts that had run through her head. “Have you ever noticed how places never bat an eye at two girls sharing a room, and yet, if it’s two guys, they automatically assume they’re gay?”
“They’ll soon change their tune when they see your outfit for tonight!” Jenny replied, grinning cheekily at her. “It screams ‘lesbian’ with every stitch!”
“Whatever do you mean, you saucy wench? Someone with girl parts dressing as a distinguished gentleman does not a lesbian make.”
“True, but I wonder what it’ll do to you? Perhaps it’ll work in reverse and turn you straight!”
Buy Links:
Lucy is a graduate of the University of Derby, where she studied Creative Writing. During her first year, she was dared to write an erotic story - so she did. It went down a storm and she's never looked back. Lucy has had stories published by Cleis Press, Noble Romance, Ravenous Romance, Summerhouse Publishing, Sweetmeats Press and Xcite Books. She is also the editor of Uniform Behaviour and Seducing the Myth. Find out more at You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Guest: K D Grace

KD Grace has a new release out today and has asked me to post her blurb and an excerpt to help her promote it.

An erotic novel by best-selling author K D Grace.
In appreciation for a job well done, STELLA JAMES 's boss sends her a pet – a human pet. The mischievous TINO comes straight from THE PET SHOP complete with a collar, a leash, and an erection. Stella soon discovers the pleasure of keeping Pets, especially this one, is extremely addicting.
Obsessed with Tino and with the reclusive philanthropist, VINCENT EVANSTON, who looks like Tino, but couldn’t be more different, Stella is drawn into the secret world of The Pet Shop. As her animal lust awakens, Stella must walk the thin line that separates the business of pleasure from the more dangerous business of the heart or suffer the consequences.
"YOU CAN'T BE SERIOUS," O'Kelly said, nearly dropping the phone. "You can't really mean to give Stella James Tino for the whole weekend. Wouldn't a nice gift voucher from Selfridges be more appropriate?"

The Boss offered her a tolerant chuckle on the other end of the phone. "Didn't she tell you she thought an occasional shag wasn't too much to ask for doing such a demanding job?"

"Yes, but she was joking. I'm sure she never expected–"
"Well, she's right. It isn't too much to ask, is it? She's a very dedicated employee, and we've always done our best to reward dedicated employees, especially one with such promise, one that we have such plans for."

"Yes but–"

"Hasn't she met and surpassed our expectations since she's joined Strigida, and didn't we both agree she's exactly what we're looking for?"

"Yes, but–"

"She's not in a relationship, right?"

She rolled her eyes and glanced down at her watch. He was on a roll. Nothing for it now but to hear him out.

"No relationship, no family. Stella can afford to live in London because she has no life outside of work, all factors we took into account when we hired her. There's no arguing she doesn't have time for sex." He paused long enough for a quick breath. "Sorry to say that's the way of the world these days. All work and no play. Very sad. Very sad indeed."

"Yes, sir. It is sad, but, sir, Tino?"

"Yes. Tino."

"OK, maybe for a couple of hours, maybe. But surely not for the whole weekend."

"Yes, for the whole weekend, O'Kelly, from Friday night till Sunday evening. Every last second of it."

O"Kelly rubbed her forehead impatiently then rolled her shoulders to loosen the knots, which she could always count on the Boss to tighten. "It's not that the woman doesn't deserve a weekend of blow-your-brains-out sex. God knows she does, but ..."

"But what, O'Kelly? Get to the point."

O"Kelly squirmed uncomfortably in her seat. She found the whole thing a bit embarrassing, actually. "Well, sir, she's just so ..."

"So what?"

"She's just so tight laced, so prim and proper. I don't know – all business. I can't help but wonder if we've made a mistake, and even if we haven't, a weekend with Tino is just so hardcore at this stage, don't you think?" She straightened in her chair and brushed her skirt free of the few remaining crumbs from the sandwich she had wolfed for lunch. "I can't picture her being the kind who could appreciate or even be able to handle a weekend with Tino."

"Prim and proper? Really? You just told me she was joking about the company providing sex as a fringe benefit for its overworked employees. Doesn't sound very prim and proper to me. In fact she sounds like exactly the woman we've been looking for."

Buy Links
K D Grace was born with a writing obsession. It got worse once she actually learned HOW to write. There's no treatment for it. It's progressive and chronic and quite often interferes with normal, everyday functioning. She might actually be concerned if it wasn't so damned much fun most of the time.
K D's erotic romance novels, The Initiation of Ms Holly and The Pet Shop, both published by Xcite Books, are available from all good paperback and eBook retailers.
Her erotica has been published with Xcite Books, Mammoth, Cleis Press, Black Lace, Erotic Review, Ravenous Romance, Sweetmeats Press and Scarlet Magazine.
Find out more about K D Grace on her website, She's also on Facebook and Twitter.