About RWA San Diego

The Romance Writers of America's San Diego chapter promotes excellence in romantic fiction, helps writers become published and establish careers in their writing field, and provides continuing support for writers within the romance publishing industry. Contact us for more information about RWASD.

January Good News!

San Diego RWA Good News: January 2015


Terry Irene Blain sold Charity For a Ranger, the first of three Texas historical romances to Desert Breeze.


Shoshana Brown received a request for a revise & resubmit from Entangled for Pretty in Ink.


Kitty Bucholtz released A Very Merry Superhero Wedding on December 24th.


Susan Burns will be releasing the novella A Far Far Better Thing, the prequel to her Legend of the Goldens series, under her pen name, S.B.K. Burns.


Tameri Etherton entered The Stones of Kaldar into the Holt, the IPPY, the Reader’s Favorite and the Judge A Book By Its Cover contests.


Kimberly Field just got accepted into RWA and joined our chapter in January.


Gloria Gay has had another regency accepted by Boroughs.


Tessa McFionn “finally got a book published.” Spirit Fall.


Pamela Moran will be releasing Gavin’s Woman at the end of January and Dreamwalker: Key to Paradise, a short story in the Sexy To Go Anthology.


Bob Richard just published Autumn Breeze.


Linda Thomas Sundstrom has signed a contract for 2 books with Harlequin Nocturne.


Becca Syme, a guest in January, is releasing Lachlan’s Revenge, a medieval, on Feb. 1.


Regan Walker made PAN in December and saw her medieval romance, The Red Wolf’s Prize reach #1 on Amazon’s Top 100 Medieval Romances.

We had so much fun at this meeting- there were bubbles everywhere!

 Atta Girl -Sylvia Mendoza and President Elect Tameri Etherton

Member of the month Linda Thomas Sundstrom and President -Elect Tameri Etherton

Good News from November!

We had an awesome Literacy event meeting and had the wonderful Brenda Novak speak all day long! There were baskets and items for just about any taste ranging from Kindles (two) and Four Day Comic Con passes to baskets with books, chocolate and booze (and much more) :).  It was a great meeting and raised a lot of money for San Diego Literacy programs.  Make sure to mark it on your new calendars to join us next year!

And we had some member GREAT news!

RWASD November 2014 Good News

 Jackie Allen received a request for The Rogue’s Revenge which must be turned in by December 1st.

Terry Blain’s contemporary cowboy romance has been sold to Desert Breeze.

Melissa Cutler was named Member Of The Year for 2014.

Jeanne M. Dickson is a finalist in The Molly for her Contemporary Single Title Eire Ever After.

Carlene Love Flores’ second book in the Sin Pointe series, knowns as Sins Flower is going to print!

Mary Galusha participated in Local Author Day at the Ramona Library, where she was signing Sapphire Skies.

Ruthie Henrick released Twice In a Lifetime in January 2014. She is also a finalist in the I © Indie Contest.

Lisa Kessler’s Blood Moon will release on December 1st.

Georgie Lee won the OKRWA International Digital Award for Historical Short with Hero’s Redemption.

Mary Leo’s Christmas with the Rancher will release on December 1st.

Dara Young was awarded the Barbara Faith 2014 Award for her service to the chapter.

Sorcha Mowbry released A Cowboy’s Christmas Wish as part of the Hot Holiday Treats boxed set on November 3rd. It is currently on the Amazon Best Seller list for Anthologies & Holiday Books.

Sally Orr’s The Rake’s Handbook: Including Field Guide has been nominated for the RT Book Review Reviewer’s Choice Award for Best First Historical.

Members of the month Dara Young and Tameri Etherton with President elect Janet Tait


Member of the Year- Melissa Cutler with former chapter president Sylvia Mendoza


Barbara Faith Award winner Dara Young with former chapter president Sylvia Mendoza

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“When Ducky Sang”- Carlene Love Flores

Carlene Love FloresHi everyone! It’s my first time blogging for my new chapter’s blog and I’m very excited to be here.

So I’ve been thinking a lot lately about gentlemen. You know, the ones who open doors, suffer in silence and yes, even blush. Because sometimes, we fall for the non-alpha male. In a world full of Spartans, Cowboys and the occasional Salvatore brother, they’re a little harder to spot, but they’re there. And they’re adorable as heck. The Ducky’s of the world are just waiting to be the star hero of your next romance novel.

For me, it started the minute I watched Ducky serenading Andie in the record shop. Rewind. For anyone who doesn’t know, Ducky is the Jon Cryer character from the 1986 John Hughes film “Pretty in Pink”. His dark hair was so cool; he may as well have been Elvis. I loved his style of clothes and his shoes, oh man, pure funky coolness. But when he sang, I fell in love. Even though Ducky wasn’t the wanted man in the film, I only ever saw him as this strong, determined, brave soul. He knew what he wanted and he went after it. In my eyes, he was the prize no one wanted and I’ve never understood that.

Does a man’s hard muscle definition trump a tender heart?

As a woman, I do want someone who is strong. But even if lacking insanely sculpted biceps and testosterone of steel, a guy like Ducky is going to stand up for his lady. I have full confidence in that. His machismo is coming from his heart. The heart—it’s a muscle too. At the end of a long day, a Ducky does it for me just as easily as a Navy Seal. To quote Sheryl Crow, all I want to know is are you strong enough to be my man? I think, no, I know, a Ducky would say yes.

I’d love for you to meet my modern-day Ducky. His name is Ben and he’s a giant, quirky webmaster for a rock band. In my book series, The Sin Pointe Novels, he’s a major behind the scenes player and can usually be found brightening the days of everyone around him. I was so proud to give Ben his own story in Sin’s Haven. I hope you’ll check in on Ben and root for him as he struggles to prove why finishing first isn’t always the most important thing for a nice guy.

But now I want to hear from you.

Who are some of your favorite fictional beta heroes and why? For the writers out there, if you were going to cast a non-alpha male as the lead in your story, what qualities would you give him to keep him competitive with his more macho counterparts?

Thanks so much for letting me guest blog today. Love stories rock!

sinshaven1mFind out more about big, gentle Ben in his story here:


A Bit About Carlene:

Carlene Love Flores is a big fan of the stars (especially Orion), honest music (especially Depeche Mode), and her traveling family (no favorites there-she loves them all). These things inspire her intimate style of romance writing. She feels honored to be a member of Washington DC Romance Writers (WRWDC) and RWA San Diego (RWASD). Carlene currently lives in the San Diego area where she can often be found listening to live music and looking up at the sky on clear nights.  If she could touch someone’s heart with her writing the way others have done for her, she’d say truly there never lived a luckier girl.

Carlene would love to hear from you, find her here:

Website  http://carlenelove.com/

Publisher  http://www.evernightpublishing.com/carlene-love-flores/

Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6887320.Carlene_Love_Flores

Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/carlene.l.flores

Twitter  https://twitter.com/cloveflores



Today we have some RWASD published authors chatting with us and their books in the new and very awesome book set- Seductive Supernaturals! Since we’re so close to Halloween, thoughts we’d ask some questions about that.

Please welcome Lisa Kessler and Chris Marie Green! 

     1.  What is your scariest Halloween memory?

 LISA: Probably when I was about 5. My parents took me to a Halloween event someplace and they were playing The Blob on a big outdoor screen. It scared me to death! LOL I’ve since seen it as an adult and I’m pretty sure I was the most chicken kid ever! :).

CHRIS: When I was really little, my babysitter decided it would be funny to stalk me with a Frankenstein pillow. I remember seeing Frankenstein’s face slowly peeking around a corner and it scared the blazes out of me. I guess that’s why I have an appreciation for a slow monster reveal these days, LOL.

       2. Ever pulled any Halloween pranks?

 LISA: We usually decorate the back of my car for Trunk or Treat at the local elementary school every year and one year I had rigged a motion sensor spider to the top. Kids would move in for candy and it would drop down with 8 hairy legs and red eyes and then slowly climb back up. Some teens came through, all full of bravado and one of them with a girlfriend in tow came up to my car. Since the spider was rigged for elementary kids, this guy was tall and the spider got in his hair!  He screamed all high pitched like a girl with flailing hands and all! 🙂  Needless to say his friends probably still haven’t let him live it down.

CHRIS: Not that I recall. I was always in it for the candy. J

  1. What was your best Halloween costume? –

 LISA: My daughter Panda made me an incredible Evil Queen costume!  I love it! 🙂 EvilQueen-6

CHRIS: A vampire bride. I had a veil barely covering my face, which featured streaks of blood by my mouth and fangs. From a distance, it was a lovely costume, but the closer people would get, the better they could see the awfulness behind the veil, LOL. I remember one drunk girl at a party coming up to me saying, “Oh, how pretty—UGH. OH.” It made my night.

      4. Thinking of the hero of your story in this series- what would be the thing or person who would scare him the most? Same for your heroine?

 LISA: Colin would be frightened if Juliana fell from one of Ireland’s cliffs. He’s got a bad arm so when he shifts into his red-tail hawk spirit animal, he can only glide. He’d be terrified he’d fail her. Juliana is pretty fearless, but if she ever saw Benedict from Night Angel again, she’d be pretty scared! 🙂  No more water horses.

CHRIS: Since the hero of my book, SHADOWS TILL SUNRISE, is a psychic, it would take a gnarly vision to scare him—especially if it showed a threat to anyone he cares about. My heroine has a nightmarish past—she’s an ex-guard of Dracula who’s been burned nearly to death twice, put into “retirement” (which basically means she was in a mental coffin), then resurrected as a revenant and healed by a white-magic witch. (Phew.) Nothing but memories of her “retirement” is going to scare this girl.

5. Any pranksters in this story? What Halloween pranks might they pull? –

 LISA: Bartley who works on Colin’s farm would definitely pull pranks on the house staff. He might even figure out a way to rig his own headless horseman!

CHRIS: The villain is an evil prankster—at first, it appears that he’s a “phantom” that doesn’t really know any better. Any pranks he pulls would involve killing, because he doesn’t see anything wrong with it.

  1. If your main characters were going to a Halloween bash- what would they dress up as and why?

 LISA: I think Colin would go as a vampire and leave his fangs exposed since humans don’t believe in blood drinkers.  Juliana would go as Mimi from La Boheme… She owns a flower shop and although Mimi made silk flowers, Juliana makes origami flowers sometimes.

CHRIS: Philippe Angier would be a pirate—he resembles one anyway, especially due to his roguish attitude. My heroine, Lilly, would dress as something that would make her blend since she doesn’t ever want to stand out; she’s got enemies on her tail.

7. Any Halloween type secrets about the characters in this book?

 LISA: Both Colin and Benedict can shape shift…  Pretty Halloweeny!

CHRIS: Since Philippe can read Lilly, she doesn’t have any secrets that she’s kept from him. However, he does have some things in his past that will come out in future books… <G>

Other comments you want to add?

 CHRIS:  Happy Halloween, everyone!!!


 Lisa9-200X200 Lisa Kessler is an Amazon Best Selling author of dark paranormal fiction. Her debut novel, Night Walker, won a San Diego Book Award for Best Published Fantasy-Sci-fi-Horror as well as the Romance Through the Ages Award for Best Paranormal and Best First Book. She currently writes the Night Series and the Moon Series for Entangled Publishing.

Her short stories have been published in print anthologies and magazines, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award. 

When she’s not writing, Lisa is a professional vocalist, and has performed with San Diego Opera as well as other musical theater companies in San Diego.

You can learn more at http://Lisa-Kessler.com


VB_book_photoChris Marie Green is the author of the urban fantasy Vampire Babylon series from Ace Books and the Jensen Murphy, Ghost for Hire series from Roc, which features a fun-loving spirit from the 80s. She tries her best to avoid international incidents whenever she takes a break from her first love, writing, and cheats on it with her other true love—traveling. She has an alter ego named Christine Cody, who wrote the dark fantasy Bloodlands trilogy.

You can find her at http://www.chrismariegreen.com or hang out with her online at Twitter @ChrisMarieGreen and http://www.facebook.com/chrismarie.green.


Great News! RWASD Chapter news from October

Terry Irene Blain’s blog “My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys” was featured on the Historical Romance Network’s web site. Very cool, Terry!

Terry Irene Blain has the cover of her Kentucky Green featured on The Historical Romance Network’s new Explore Historical Romance video. You can see it here: https://animoto.com/play/ORxggT5y1lXl1S0PNyS1bA

Lisa Kessler signed a new contract for 3 more books in the Moon series. Awesome, Lisa!

Georgie Lee won 1st place in the Historical Category of the ACRA Ancient City Heart of Excellence Readers Choice Award with Engagement of Convenience. Congratulations, Georgie!

Georgie Lee has the cover of Mask of the Gladiator featured on The Historical Romance Network’s new Explore Historical Romance video. You can see it here: https://animoto.com/play/ORxggT5y1lXl1S0PNyS1bA

Sally Orr has a new release on Nov. 4th with her Golden Heart finalist The Rake’s Hand Book: Including Field Guide. Yay, Sally!

Aubrey Rose released His and Alpha’s Last Fight this month. Great job, Aubrey!

Regan Walker’s The Red Wolf’s Pride was released this month and is already #1 on Amazon’s Ancient World Romance, #3 in Hot New Releases, and #7 in the Top 100 Medieval Romances. Whew. Well done, Regan!

Dara Young released Prince Charming Need Not Apply (Book 1 in the Swirl Cosmetics series) this month. Way to go Dara!

Attagirl/Attaguy: awarded to everyone in this chapter who has worked through obstacles to keep writing!

Member of the month: Marie Andreas

Congratulations to everyone with good news—can’t wait to celebrate even more success with everyone next month.

7 Steps on My Self-Publishing Journey for The Red Wolf’s Prize- Regan Walker

Regan Walker profile pic 2014


My first novels, all Regency romances, were written under contract to a small ePublisher. I was glad I chose that route as I was a newbie who needed to work with a team of professionals. In that process, however, I learned a few things: My writing benefited from a great editor; I wanted to design my own covers working directly with a good cover artist; and the best publicity was not the blog tour my publisher arranged, though that was nice. Rather, it was the blogs I organized myself based upon the ones who catered to historical romance readers and cared about the “historical” part of my stories—the blogs that wanted substantive posts drawn from my research. Face it, these days most authors have to do their own publicity.

For my new medieval romance, The Red Wolf’s Prize, a book I’d started after my first novel, Racing With The Wind, I decided to take a different path. Having known several authors of 5-star novels who had been successfully self-publishing for some time, I wanted to see if I could self-publish, too. It used to be the big publishers that had all the great resources. That is no longer true. I asked a New York agent I know, who has been in the business for a long time, whether I should look for another publisher or go forward with my idea to self publish. He told me if I already had a cover (I did) and a good editor (I had found one through another author), I should just go for it and self publish. And so I did.

Here are the lessons I learned along the way. I hope they will help you.

  1.  Begin with the story: write what you love to read. I heard lots of agent/editor panels asking for submissions for romantic suspense, young adult and fantasy romances. Only occasionally did I hear one say he or she wanted medieval romance. It mattered not to me. I love medieval romance and was intent on writing one, one where the history itself was a character. I knew in my heart there were readers out there who wanted these stories. So, my recommendation here is to listen to your heart and write what you love to read! The glory of self-publishing is that you don’t have to depend on the whims of the publishing industry. Trust me, there are readers out there who want to read your book if it is a well told story!

As for my own story, I have always been fascinated by the time in England’s history when the Normans, led by William, Duke of Normandy, conquered England, a much larger country than the one he was from. While the Conquest is interesting, it did not interest me as much as the aftermath when William was still putting out fires and trying to gain control. It was then he began giving away half of England to his loyal followers. So, I set my story in 1068 in Talisand, a fictional holding of a wealthy English thegn in the North of England, half way between Scotland and Wales—far removed from the initial battles.

Not surprisingly, the north of England was to give William much grief. The proud English in the north did not want the Norman king for their ruler anymore than they had wanted King Harold, but at least Harold was English. This Norman usurper was not.

What would an English maiden do when the Normans conquered her country, slayed the father she loved, and gave her lands and her person to one of the Norman knights? What would a courageous, spirited girl do? Why, rebel, of course! Hence, I had my story line.


  1. The cover. It may seem odd to some of you, but for me, the cover must come before I finish the book. And that had always been an issue with my publisher who wanted to do the cover when all was done. Once I have the story idea, the characters and the setting, I want a cover that not only inspires me but urges me to “finish the book.” And I write to the cover, too, so the story is consistent with it. I was 30K words into my story when I designed the cover for The Red Wolf’s Prize.

As I always do, I began by looking for images the resonated with my story. For                   months, I looked for images that said “11th Century love story,” or “Norman knight               takes a reluctant bride,” and found none that worked for me. The images of knights             all had them wearing plate armor, which came much later, and the knights seemed             too young. And the couples all looked very modern. I wanted a couple on my cover,           not just a sword and a shield. And at least some clothes. Because her hair color                was an issue in the story, the heroine had to have very long, flaxen hair. Since much          of the story is set in a Saxon manor at a time when there were few stone castles                (William the Conqueror built hundreds of castles but they were all made of timber), I             needed something that said “manor,” not “castle.”

Having found no images that would suit, I went to an artist I had met at a writer’s conference a few years before, one whose work I admired. Her paintings said “classic romance” to me. I loved her romantic images that had graced the cover of several authors I admire. From my historical and bodice ripper groups on Goodreads, I knew that readers miss the old covers with all the angst and emotion. So I decided to design a classic cover that also said “medieval.” Fortunately, the artist got what I wanted and took one of her stock images, painted over it and customized it until I had Sir Renaud de Pierrepont and Lady Serena of Talisand in an emotion-filled embrace. From there, an author friend helped me with the typeface and a cover artist did the rest. The most expensive thing was the image itself, but it was worth it.

  1. Critique partners and beta readers. Whether you self publish or not, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of having other eyes on your story. Critique partners, either online or in person, look at short submissions and tell you what they think. They will spot those errors you missed, too. In my case there are five of us and we meet at least once a month to go over our 20-page submissions. Only three of us write historical romance but all are helpful. When my book is done, I give it to a half dozen “beta readers” who read it as you would. They tell me if they liked it, if the plot held their interest, if the characters were well developed, what they would change, etc. It helps immensely. I recommend you have at least a few beta readers who are not your best friends.
  1. The editor. Once the book is finished and beta read, you need a good editor. You can find lots of recommendations for editors on the author loops and I do recommend you ask for those. I also recommend you be choosy. When you’ve settled on a few candidates, send them the first few chapters of your book. See how fast they respond and what they give you. This is a long-term partnership you are forming and you must be sure you have made a good choice. One I tried gave me back a critique, the kind I’d get from my critique partners. It was good, but not what I was looking for. Yes, I wanted an editor to tighten up my writing, but I also wanted an editor who was willing to look at the big picture and tell me when the story needed a change. Because timeliness and dependability are important to me, I also wanted an editor who answered my emails and who delivered on what he promised.

The editor I finally selected, Scott Moreland, became my partner in the story writing            process and he is every bit as picky as I am—all to the good. He doesn’t just help              me say it better, he helps me tell the best story I can. And may I add, he answers my          emails!

  1. When the book was finally edited and I had my cover, I needed to get it up on Amazon and all those other online bookstores. For that I needed a professional formatter. You can do it yourself, but this is not a high priced item and I did not want to mess up this piece of it. So I chose Iron Horse Formatting, which was recommended by a fellow author. They did all the formats for my ebook (pdf, Mobi, epub and Smashwords doc) with a turn around time of a week. And also the format for print for CreateSpace at a small extra charge.
  1. On to publishing. If you are the type who wants to do very little on your own, there are options for you. Once your book is written, CreateSpace (https://www.createspace.com), an Amazon entity, will do it all if you want them to: the editing, the copyediting, the cover, the formatting—all of it. And not just for print, but for Kindle, too. There is a charge for each service, but they have a vested interest in producing a quality product, so you can be sure they will do right by your book.

My author friends who publish via CreateSpace told me they loved using them, so it           was number one on my list—but I only wanted to use it for print. As I had already               designed my cover and had a great editor (who is also a copyeditor), I decided to use         CreateSpace only for the final formatting and publication of my  print-on-demand                  book. For the eBook, I used Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP,                                  http://www.amazonkdp.com), because I wanted to take advantage of the option to              put the book up on preorder. That turned out to be a good idea as I had over 400                preorders before release day, which put my book on Amazon’s Top 100 Medieval              Romances list prior to date of publication.

And voilà! The Red Wolf’s Prize as you see it today!


The day after The Red Wolf’s Prize was released (Oct. 1st), it was #1 on Amazon in Ancient World Romance, #5 on Amazon’s Hot New Releases and #9 in the Top 100 Medieval Romances list.

5 days after the release of The Red Wolf’s Prize, the royalties earned paid for all costs to publish it. It is now #3 in Hot New Releases and #7 in the Top 100 Medieval Romances.

  1. Publicity. Though this may come last, begin thinking about this months before you want to release your book. Find the blogs that cater to your kind of story. Ask if they would like you to be a guest on their blog. Offer them a date months in the future and offer them an interesting post. Or, they might want an interview. Once you’ve been accepted as a guest, be sure to get them all they need in a timely fashion. As a blog owner myself, I prefer not to have to chase down an author for her post, the pics that go with it, her giveaway or her links. Those who hand me proofread, finished product with all I need have my everlasting thanks.

On the day of your appearance, be sure and spread the news via Facebook, Twitter and the loops you might be on. (I do recommend being active on Facebook. I’ve met some wonderful friends there, many of whom are now my readers.)

And be sure to comment when the post goes up, thanking the blog owner for hosting you. Check in frequently to respond to any comments.

You can buy blog tours, of course, and I did, even though I also organized my own tour that covered a few months. Those from the purchased blog tour introduced me to blogs I might never have thought to contact. The bottom line is you want to get the word out.


My journey has been an eye-opener for me. But if I can do it, so can you!





* Note- any layout problems are due to an issue with the blog- not the fault of Regan

-RWASD Blogmistress


Why Are Villains So Darn Irresistible?- Tameri Etherton

TameriEtherton Hero-Villain copy

If you look up the definition of villain in the dictionary, this is what you might find:

Villain [vil-uh-n] noun “a cruelly malicious person who is involved in or devoted to wickedness or crime; scoundrel.” dictionary.com

But what if you asked a villain to define him or herself?

They might tell you that they aren’t bad (they’re just drawn that way, to quote Jessica Rabbit), in fact, I would hazard to guess that every villain believes, to the depths of their soul, that they’re good. They are the hero of their own story.

The ‘so bad they’re good’ villains, truly believe what they’re doing is for the benefit of society.

And that’s what makes them so darn irresistible.

Take Loki, for instance. How can you hate him? He’s a foster child! He was raised alongside his older, blonder brother, treated as an equal, but never really measuring up to their father’s expectations. He’s not bad, he’s just misunderstood!

Riiiiight. Loki is bad to his core and he knows it, but he also knows that if given the chance, he’d rock that crown and be a darn good king. Or Allfather, or whatever it is he’d call himself.

It’s easy to love Thor. Those eyes, those biceps, that hammer!

But Loki? He’s dark and mysterious. He has secrets. He is, if you really think about it, a mythological modern day Christian Grey without the riding crop. He’s so messed up ladies (and some gentlemen), want to take him home and fix him. Because he’s worth saving, right?


Every villain is worth saving.

No matter how bad, or manipulative, or low-down rotten they are, every villain started out as an innocent child. Through society, or family, or bad choices, they ended up on the wrong side of the hero. But that doesn’t mean they can’t find their way back to goodness. Or so we’d like to think.

Just like Luke Skywalker, we have to believe there is good inside every Darth Vader we encounter. That’s why good girls fall for the bad boys. It’s why we cheer for the villain.

Take Benedict Cumberbatch’s Khan in Star Trek Into Darkness. Oh. My. Villain.

Every look, every word uttered from his lips was an invitation to hate him, but I couldn’t. He was too damaged, too full of his own moral indignation. I actually hoped at the end of the movie that he’d open that pod and escape just so I could see him again.

That’s what a villain should do ~ capture our hearts as completely as the hero has. The villain needs to be equally as important to the story as the hero, or where’s the conflict? A boring villain is too easy for the hero.

What if your villain is a self, cruel, manipulator? Can you still love them?

Yes. As long as they truly believe in what they’re doing. In my Song of the Swords series, Zakael is a villain I love to hate. He uses people, drinks their blood (no, he’s not a vampire, just twisted that way), doesn’t hesitate to take what he wants, and has some disturbing ideas about sex, but underneath is pain and cruelty, he believes he’s what his world needs. And he thinks the heroine is his perfect match, which causes some problems for her and the hero, as you can imagine.

Zakael’s motives are similar to the heroine’s in that he wants to bring peace to his world. But he understands that to do so means he has to kill a few people, starting with his father, who wants to sacrifice the heroine to a mad god. Achievement justified. At least to Zakael. I’m sure his father would disagree, but he has his own problems and issues…

Villains are complex characters that can’t just be bad for sake of plot. They need to be justifiably bad. They have to own their decisions and believe in what they’re own goodness as they interpret it, not how society defines good versus evil. That belief in themselves as the hero of their own story is what makes them remarkable, and memorable.

And ultimately, Irresistible.

Now it’s your turn. Who is your favorite literary villain? Film villain? Do you prefer the heroes or villains in a story? Why? Share with us! We’d love to know.


Some say she’s the one of prophecy,

that she’ll bring balance to the world.

Others say she’s the destroyer,

meant to bring an end to Aelinae.

They’re both right.


Everything Taryn knew was a lie. Her life on Earth, the man she thought was her grandfather, even her age, were all fabrications meant to protect her, to keep her hidden until she could return to her home world. Once on Aelinae, Taryn realizes she has more to fear than the creeping darkness that threatens to suffocate her.

 Unwilling to become a pawn in the machinations of her scheming family and the world she now calls home, Taryn sets out to learn about her mysterious powers. Reluctantly, she accepts the help of Rhoane, a man who promises to protect her, but whom she’s not sure she can trust.

 As tensions mount and her loved ones are threatened, Taryn must confront an ancient enemy and stop a sinister plan to bring back a banished god.

 On Aelinae they say there can be no Light without Dark and no darkness without light. If Taryn fails, there will be only Blackness. Absolute. Binding. Without end.

 Failure is simply not an option.

Tameri Etherton Bio Pic web-2

Tameri Etherton Bio:

Rocker of sparkly tiaras, friend of dragons, and lover of all things sexy, Tameri Etherton leaves a trail of glitter in her wake as she creates and conquers new worlds and the villains who inhabit them. When not masquerading as a mom and writer, rumor has it she travels to far off places, drinking tea and finding inspiration for her kickass heroines—and the rogues who steal their hearts—with her own Prince Charming by her side.

Social Media Links:

Email: TameriEtherton@gmail.com

Website: http://www.TameriEtherton.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TameriEtherton

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TameriEthertonAuthor

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/TameriEtherton

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/0Kahf

Blogging about… blogging- Marie Andreas

Whether you love blogs or hate blogs, they are now a serious component of the writing world.  There are blogs about and for (or against) just about any topic under the sun, but today I’m focusing on writers who blog.  I’ve been blogging for over five years and am fairly consistent about it.

To start off, ANYONE can blog.  You don’t need to have a degree in writing, nor a published number of books, nor any book at all.  What you need is to have an opinion about some aspect of the topic at hand- writing.  Since, as humans, we all pretty much have opinions about everything, that shouldn’t be a problem. 😉

Now, armed with your opinion, you slap it up there, and wait for the million dollar blogger deals to come rolling in.

Annnnd, no.

You are not going to get rich.  Your blog is not going to turn into a publishing deal.  And there’s a good chance that in the beginning only your family and best friends (who you have plied with candy and/ or booze) will read it, let alone make the all valued “comment” *cue chorus of angels here*. (Hint- if you love someone- COMMENT on their blog! ;))

So, why blog?

Blogging for writers is a great way to connect with other readers and writers.  Your blog post can be writer-centric or reader-centric. Or both.  Really it is all reader-centric. I’ve read and heard writers ask, “Will there be readers there, or just writers?” To which I give a sad little sigh, shake my head, and go wander into a sharp corner somewhere.  Writers ARE readers, folks.  I don’t know anyone who said, “I hate reading, maybe I’ll try writing a book.”  NEVER has that happened.

Yes, if you are doing a blog more aimed at writer issues you may get more reader-writers as opposed to reader-readers, but they are still potential readers of your work. So never discount a blog or event that is “mostly just all writers”- you’re losing an audience (and that’s a blogging sin).

Blogging can introduce you to folks before your books come out- if they like your blogging voice, they may very well like your writing voice. It can help get the word out about your books.  People who follow your blog, who interact with you, will feel connected to you- therefore they are more likely to tweet, post, yell, scream, or whatever to tell their friends when a book of yours comes out.

So how to get started?

First, I recommend just doing a guest blog post somewhere- like here if you’re an RWASD member ;).  If not, look around and see if you can find someone who will let you do a guest post.  This means you have to READ and COMMENT on other blogs!  Shock, I know.  The blogging world supports each other, make connections as a commenter and you might make a blogging buddy ;). INTERACT ON BLOGS!  SUPPORT OTHER BLOGGERS!

Secondly, what to blog about?  See my comment up above- find an opinion, idea, observation and run with it. Some things to keep in mind:

  1. Stick to a single topic when possible. A focused blog is a strong blog. Unfocused blogs confuse the reader and weaken whatever it is you’re trying to say. They also waste a blog topic (another blogging sin!)
  1. That old style “how to draft an essay” worksheet from school may actually come in handy now. Start with a broad statement about your topic, narrow down to the point or hypothesis you want to make. Then add support, information, details, humorous, yet related, side bits.  Follow up with a conclusion and call for interaction.

You don’t have to lay it out like a formal essay, but keeping the form in mind will help structure your post.  Introduce your subject, expound on it, and wrap it up.

On the structure side of things also remember- we love white space.  I will not read a blog if it is one giant lump of text.  Use space just like you would in your books. Let things flow, but break them up. (I also say keep it short- but this blog is an anti-example of that ;))

  1. Don’t force the funny. Some folks have a way with writing humor, others, not so much.  Just because writing funny isn’t your schtick doesn’t mean you’re a bad person, nor not funny as heck in real life. Most people are on a funny scale- some write side splitting hilarity, others a bit-o-humor and some pretty much write serious.  Know where you are on the writing funny scale and stick with it. Forcing funny when you’re not feeling it is just going to be awkward.
  1. Make sure your post is approachable and interesting. If you come across as THE expert on the topic, you’re most likely going to put off folks- especially folks who may know they are the expert. A blog post shouldn’t be a pissing match.  It also needs to be interesting- if you are desperate to post huge chunks of your upcoming book and really urge your blog readers to buy it- you’re going to come across as a used car salesman.  Tidbits of a new book once you have an established audience are great and a great way to drive readers to your blog.  But make sure they are short and sweet!

Now, having your own blog just builds on the above.

But keep in mind:

  • You want to make readers welcome to your home- and that’s what your blog is.
  • Respond to their comments, even if you disagree, either do so politely, or just thank them for their view and for coming by (see above comment about it NOT being a pissing match).
  • Blog regularly. There is nothing worse than finding someone cool, going to their blog, and finding they last blogged a year ago. Or six months ago.  Or even a month ago.  It looks un-professional.  I blog once a week, I’ve heard others recommend more, but that’s all I can really keep up. If you can’t commit to a regular blog schedule most weeks,  hold off for now.

This is now quite possibly the longest blog I’ve done, so I think I’ll stop now.  But please keep the conversation going on here, ask questions, if you’re already a blogger, tell us about your blog and your hints and tips.

And thanks for coming by!


My blog in case you want to check it out 😉 http://faeriesdragonsspaceships.blogspot.com/


GREAT news from September!

A HUGE round of applause for all of the great news going on in our chapter in the last month!

Jill Limber: Released Lunchbox Romance – Fool Me Once

Teresa Carpenter – Sold 3 book deal to Harlequin

Dara Young – Boiling Point Aegis Book 1 released in June

Demi Hungerford writing as Roxana Haley – Self Published Regency Banquet Stories Book 1 – Appetizer: Pure Seduction

Mary Galusha – Participating in Ramona Library’s Author Way

Shirley Wilder – Fly Me w/Bouroughs was released July 29th

Tameri Etherton – The Stones of Kaldaar (Song of the Swords Book One) was released on September 3rd.

Janet Tait joined PAN

Shoshana Brown had a request for a full MS from Bradford Literary Agency and Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

Georgie Lee sold two novels and a Christmas novella to Harlequin Historical.

 Congratulations to all of you!

Did you have some recent great news not on this list? PLEASE ADD IT IN THE COMMENTS! We want to celebrate it with you!

Member of the month- Mary Galusha and President elect- Janet Tait

 image (2)

Atta Girl of the month-Tameri Etherton and Presedent elect-Janet Taitimage (3)


This month we also had a wonderful cover model and the folks who create those awesome covers!  We got to see a photo shoot, then the Killion Group made two mock up covers!

Wench's minuteman cover


Tameri coverHope to see all of you at the October meeting!

Changing It Up—Writing Short and Learning a Lesson- Jill Limber

Today the RWASD Blog is pleased to welcome Jill Limber!



My first short story, Fool Me Once, was just released.  11,659 words. Should be quick and easy to write, considering my past books ranged between 100K, back in the old days when the New York publishers were bringing out what we used to call ‘Big Books’, to my Harlequins that ran around 60K.

Not so. I discovered writing short is an art.  You have very little time to get all the conflict, attraction and angst on the page. No time to wander through the countryside setting the scenes with pretty descriptions, have characters explore their feelings at length, or have the hero and heroine slowly discover their growing attraction to each other.

All the information needs to be on the page NOW.  First scene—the who, where, what, when, and why all has to be there to launch the story.

I leaned a very important lesson from writing a short story. You know, one of those ‘duh’ moments. This is how all books should be written.  Get the information to hook your reader right up front.

Pretend you are writing a short story every time you start a book.

Which brings me to my pet peeve as an editor. I get a lot of submissions I turn down. Don’t start you book with back story. Ever. Don’t explain anything up front. Ever. Show the action through your characters as the story moves along.

Look at your synopsis for the book you are working on. How much of the synopsis is information that happens before the story starts? Red line it and figure out how to show it in the body of the story.

As the late Elmore Leonard once said: Don’t write the stuff people don’t want to read.


Jill Limber:

A multi-published author and former RWA President, as a child some of Jill’s tales got her in trouble, then, to her delight, she got paid for them. At the beginning of 2012, Jill entered a new phase of her Romance career when she became an Editor at Boroughs Publishing Group; now she helps other writers realize their dreams. Residing in San Diego with her husband and a trio of dogs, Jill’s favorite pastime is to gather friends and family for good food, conversation and plenty of laughter.

Jill’s books are available from Amazon or on the Boroughs Publishing Group website.

Coming Soon: Fool Me Once
Project: Dream Girl–out now!
Book #6 New Year’s Eve Club Series
Boroughs Publishing Group