Cover Reveal for The Island (Now and Forever 2)

I’m so excited! While at work today at my evil day job as a veterinarian, I received an email notification on my cell. Imagine my excitement to see an email from Siren today with copies of my new cover. Whoohoo!

The cover artist, Christine Kirchoff, captured what I had in mind for the island at sunset. Even though the model on the cover has blonde hair and I picture Quinn as a brunette, I think the couple looks perfect! I asked a question on Facebook the other day. “Who did you picture in your mind as Quinn when you read For the Love of Quinn? I got a variety of answers and you know what? All of them were correct. Who I picture in my mind doesn’t have to be the exact version you picture. That’s the whole point of reading books isn’t it? Letting your imagination run wild is more than half the fun, and picturing yourself as one of the characters is the rest of it!

So with that being said, here is my new cover!

 

It’s scheduled for release on November 15th. If that changes, you better believe I’ll let you know. 😉

~Tammy

First Round of Edits for The Island…

I was really looking forward to the first round of edits for The Island.  Not only did I run through that manuscript multiple times with a critical eye, I wanted to be sure the lessons I learned from editing For the Love of Quinn came through. I didn’t want to see anymore of those little comment balloons pointing out the ever dreaded head hopping. Oh and don’t get me started with my overuse of the ellipses…

See what I mean?

So imagine my surprise when I opened up the file sent back from my publisher and editor to find very few corrections done to the entire thing! Not only that, but the editor gave me such wonderful words of encouragement stating that I handled the shifts between the characters points of view and also the flashbacks “deftly.” She said my story was “seamless.” Yep. SEAMLESS! I can tell you there was a lot of celebrating around our household that evening.

Today I made the few corrections needed and chose and adult and story excerpt to send back to my publisher. The last time they ended up going with a different adult excerpt, but it’s all good. I had trouble picking the story excerpt this time. I wanted to give a teaser without giving too much away right off the bat. Hopefully it will be the one they like too. I’ll let you know when they put the excerpts up on my Siren author page.

There should be one more round of edits, cover art approval and then the final copy approval all within the next few weeks. November is just around the corner!

I’ve been busy working on The Surrender of Julia throughout all of this too. Since that one has scenes that are also in The Island I have to be sure they flow well and that I don’t change anything other than it’s all going to be through Julia’s eyes now.

Watch for updates and teasers from both books over the next few weeks. Once I get the cover, I’ll get started on the video trailer. I have a rough idea of what I want to have in the video, but it has to go along with the cover. I’ve chosen the music. Now to find the “perfect” images to tell Jake and Quinn’s story.

Until next time, my friends. Brightest Blessings!

 

The Island has been accepted for publication!

Yesterday I received wonderful news. My publisher has accepted The Island (Now and Forever 2). They’ve set a tentative November release for the ebook version and April 2013 for the print version. As most of you know, this book started off as a short story “A Christmas Miracle for Jake.” I posted it here on this blog during a blog hop at the end of last year. It was in three parts.

Here are the links to those posts so you can get a little sneak peek at the story.

Part One  Part Two  Part Three

Of course it’s evolved a lot since then and I’ve developed Julia’s story into her own book too.  If I can get that one done and submitted, I may have two new books released before the end of the year. I’m not going to force it. If Julia’s story flows well then so be it. I want to be happy with it before sending it in for consideration. As you know, characters want their story told and they don’t give a rip about deadlines! 😉

To celebrate, I’d like to share the song that I heard in my head when I wrote the love scenes between Quinn and Jacob for The Island.

Enjoy!

 

Update on the Now and Forever Series

Since the last entry here, I actually finished the first “draft” of The Island to my publisher. I got a request to revise it and basically split it into two books. Not that it was too long for one book, I just had too much going on. I needed to focus on one couple at a time so to speak.

Well, I took that advice to heart and now have The Island and The Surrender of Julia as book two and three respectively. I’m so glad I did that! Not only did I get to delve deeper into the world of the wickedly beautiful Julia Santos, I got to spend more time with Jake and Quinn building on their full love story and with both books, I got to bring in more of the paranormal element.

As a Wiccan, I believe in more than just one God or Goddess. I wove that into the story having characters who are also Wiccan, and introducing The Three as basically my version of the Trinity. There is Yeshua the Elder God/brother who is the Creator. The Goddess Fate or Lady Fate as I call her in in charge of Destiny. Then there is the “youngest” Sibling, the God of Trials and Tribulations, better known as Lucius. Without The Three working together there would be Chaos.  At times it would seem that Lucius works against his Siblings in order to prove that humans aren’t worthy of the blessings Yeshua has bestowed upon them. In actuality, Lucius puts the humans through the tests in order to be sure they are worthy. It’s up to them to choose the right paths in each life time to get the blessings. If they don’t, then they keep trying life time after life time until they get it right.

Quinn and Jacob are true soul mates. Through each and every life time, they search for each other, but through their own choices, are pulled apart repeatedly. Their hearts cry out to Lady Fate every time and finally she’s had enough. She wants to intervene by way of the Island. She hopes if they get to be together in that paradise, both will finally be able to choose the one path leading them back into each other’s arms. She enlists the help of two guardian angels to help gently nudge and guide them down the right direction.

These same angels will have their hands full. Not only do they have to convince Quinn and Jacob to go back to the Earthly realm to find each other again, they have to watch over several other people. Some have already crossed the path of our fated lovers, and others they have yet to meet.

I believe we are not alone and that other beings are there to help us get through life’s challenges if only we ask.  Why should we go through life thinking it’s all just random and chance? Why should my characters? That’s why I wanted to bring in the Gods and the Goddess into Quinn’s story. That’s why I made their guardian angels people they knew: Quinn’s brother Danny and Jacob’s father Michael. Being able to see, hear, and touch their loved ones again, helps to build up their faith in the promise given to them by The Three. This time was in fact their time to be together. Nothing and no one would ever tear them apart again.

In that light, here’s the music that often runs through my head when I think of Jacob and Quinn’s love story. In the first book we got to see just about everything through Quinn’s perspective, but in The Island we get to see a broken man finally find his way back to the one person who could complete him heart and soul.

I’m Back! It’s Thursday Thirteen once again

ImageHello all! It’s been a bit since I’ve been back to Behind Closed Doors and I’ve got a lot to share. I’m nearly done with the revisions for The Island (Now and Forever 2), and I’m working on the third book in the series tentatively titled The Seduction of Julia. These two books take place during the same time period but through different points of view. In fact, the next book in the series overlaps some time from book one as well.

The Island is the prequel to For the Love of Quinn. Why was it that Jake and Quinn had such a powerful connection from the moment they first met? Was it really the first time they laid eyes on each other in Las Vegas, or have the two of them been searching for each other for many lifetimes? Ten years before their faithful meeting depicted in book one, separate tragedies strike them and their families nearly ripping the two of them apart forever.

Since it is still a work in progress, I don’t have any dates when The Island will be available, but when I do you all will be the first to know! I’m very excited about this series and the characters who’ve stepped forward wanting their stories told. The Now and Forever series will always be my baby. Through it, I’ve been able to work through many things from my own past and ultimately find my happily ever after with my husband, Liam.

So here are the first thirteen sentences from book two. It’s the opening scene and cuts off the conversation, but hopefully it will be enough of a teaser to get you begging to learn what happens next.

“Thirteen years is a long time to hold a grudge, Jake.”

“That’s just it. I let that part of my past go once and for all when you came into my life.” Jacob reached for his wife’s hand and squeezed it tight before bringing it to his lips. “My life with Julia is something I would rather keep in the past. It’s got nothing to do with us or our family now.”

Both of them looked to the twins strapped safely in their infant carriers secured in the cushioned passenger seats between them. Both had dozed off now that their plane was in the air. Quinn shook her head slowly and looked back at her husband. “If it wasn’t for Julia Santos pushing you over the edge all those years ago, we might never have met when we did.”

Jacob smiled. “Have you been remembering more about—?”

“The Island? Yes…”

There’s more to the conversation, but that would be putting in more than thirteen sentences. 😉

For those of you who’ve been following this blog, you may remember the short story I posted called “A Christmas Miracle for Jake.” Well, this is the story that sprang from that. Julia became such a vibrant character, I couldn’t just leave her as background fluff. I let her tell her own story in book three.  Stay tuned for more updates about this series and others I will be writing as myself and my alter ego Lia Michaels.

Last Day of the Hoppy Easter Hop!

Hello and welcome back to Behind Closed Doors! Today is the final day of the Hoppy Easter Blog Hop and the last chance you get to visit the sites of over 200 authors and enter in their contests. If this is your first visit to this site, please leave a comment for your entry to win two of the crochet bunnies I make. A picture of the bunny is available on the post for day one. You can even go back to day one and two and leave comments there so you will get a total of three entries. I will choose a winner from all the entries on Monday April 9th.

I thought I would post a story excerpt from my current work in progress The Island (Now and Forever 2). I thought it was appropriate since I’ve been posting pictures from Maui and part of the book is set on a tropical island. Originally, I had this idea as a short story called “A Christmas Miracle for Jake,” but decided I needed to expand on it more and make it a true prequel to For the Love of Quinn.

For those of you who have read my first book with Siren, (thank you!) this second book will give you the background for both Quinn and Jake and what force was really behind how they felt about each other the first time they met in Las Vegas. I’ve also introduced a fantastic “villain” Julia Santos. She’s a diva through and through, but is she really all that evil? You’ll have to wait until it comes out. I’ll keep you posted on that one! Until then, here’s the excerpt I promised. To set this one up, this is the scene where Jake first arrives on the Island and finds out exactly how and why he’s there.

The waves crashed on the beach, bringing him out of his dream with a start.  Jacob bolted straight up out of bed in panic.  “Where the hell am I?”  He stared at his reflection in the mirrored walk-in closet. “Where the fuck are my clothes?”  He glanced around the bungalow, his eyes adjusting to the darkened room.  The curtains of the sliding glass doors were gently billowing into the room from the balmy sea breeze.  He found a pair of jean shorts on the chair near the door and slipped them on before heading outside to check out his surroundings.

Just outside his quarters, he found a large patio, barbecue pit and bubbling hot tub. “Sweet!”  By the looks of the vegetation, Jacob knew he was somewhere in the Pacific Islands, maybe even Hawaii or Tonga. Then again, maybe he was on someone’s private island.  It really didn’t matter.  He just wanted to find out what the hell was happening to him.

Two figures walking along the beach appeared in his sight. He waved to them as they moved up the beach toward his bungalow.  The younger man looked about his brother Eric’s age, covered in tattoos, and something about his eyes made goose bumps pop out all over Jacob’s skin.  They were blue green like the ocean and Jacob couldn’t make himself stop staring at them until the older man spoke.  “Welcome to the island, Jakey.”

His mind didn’t believe what he was seeing and his vision blurred a moment before he locked eyes with Michael. Jacob’s knees weakened and the younger guy reached out to steady him.  “Pop?  How…am I dead?”

Michael took Jacob’s free arm and helped Daniel escort him back to the patio to sit down.  “Not exactly.  This is what the Big Guy Upstairs calls Limbo.  We like to refer to it as The Island.  It has a better ring to it don’t you think?”

“This is definitely not like what I thought Limbo was supposed to look like, but I still don’t understand how I got here.  One minute I’m packing my bag to visit Maredyth for Christmas, and the next I wake up here.”

“That would be my doing. You were in a bad accident with your bike, brotha.”

“Did I hurt anyone else?” Jacob started to panic. What happened to Julia? Was she with me on the bike?”

Michael sighed. “Let him see a bit, Danny. If you don’t, he won’t believe anything we have to tell him.”

Daniel frowned. “Okay, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.” He closed his eyes and a white glow surrounded the three of them. All could see what happened a few hours ago as if they were there witnessing it again.

Jacob’s head nearly exploded with the lightning flash of images zipping through his mind. The conversation with Kathy at the bar played out in front of his eyes, followed swiftly by the fight with Julia and Dr. Carlos in his condo. Lightning flashed and he felt the wind in his face as if he was riding his Harley again. The last he remembered was the highway wet with the Christmas rain and then the semi was suddenly in his path.  He put his head in his hands and groaned. “I don’t want to remember anymore.”

“Here, let me help you.” Daniel placed one hand over Jacob’s eyes and the other cradled the back of his head.  A gentle warmth washed over them both and the pain quickly faded.

“How’d you do that?”

Daniel smiled.  “It’s a trick of the trade.  Something we hope you won’t learn for many more years to come.”

Michael reached for Jacob’s hands.  You were brought here for a reason.  It’s not your time yet, but you have to want to go back and live, Jakey.”

“What happens if I decide not to go back, Pop?”

His father’s face fell and tears rolled down his bearded chin.  “There’s nothing written that says you have to go back.  It’s your choice, but you have to understand this. If you stay, you will miss your chance to be with your always and forever.  You won’t get the joy of holding your children for the very first time, and you will never know the love of a beautiful woman who needs you as much as you need her, heart and soul.”

Jacob shook his head sadly.  “That’s not gonna ever happen for me, Pop.  I thought I had that with Julia and she played me for the fool that I am. It happened for Mare and I’m sure it will happen for Eric someday, but not for me. I’m tired of searching for what will never be.  I will never find someone to love and who loves me like you loved Ma.  What you had together was once in a lifetime. ”

Daniel stared at him with his eyes wide. “So you mean to tell me you just want to give up? We are offering you a chance to experience that kind of love your parents had, and still have.”

“Why waste your time? It’s just going to fall apart anyway. Everything I touch tends to do that. No matter what I do, I can’t seem to get ahead. I always end up back home with my parents. Some catch I will be for anyone.”

Daniel’s bawdy laugh caught Jacob off guard. “Yep.  You were right, Sarge.  He’s stubborn as a mule.  Quinn will definitely give him a run for his money!”

Jacob’s confusion grew. Not only was he on some tropical island with two angels, he was supposed to meet someone else.  “Who’s Quinn?”

“My sister. She’ll be here soon and you’ll see for yourself.”

This book is a contemporary erotic romance with paranormal elements (angels, the Goddess Fate), M/F and F/F pairings, BDSM and sex toys. It’s going to be a much shorter novel than Quinn’s original story so I hope it grabs your attention enough to want to read more!

Here are a few more pictures from Maui. Happy Easter!

Cheers! Notice the to go cup for my Mai Tai. The bartender was so cute! She gave me a brand new drink after I spilled the first one in the bar!

Here are a couple of shots with us in our Hawaiian wedding attire. Liam’s mother had a blast taking pictures of us all around the resort. People thought we actually got hitched there, but nope. Not yet!

coastline of Lanai
snorkelers off the coast of Molokini. It's a bird sanctuary so no one is allowed on it. Too rocky to try anyway!
On the lookout for whales
Lanai coast. Look how blue the water is! The day was just perfect for this cruise!

Make sure you leave your contact information in your comment. If you win, I want to be able to let you know! Click on the graphic below to take you to the blog hop event page and the list of the other fantastic authors participating. Have fun!

Considering adding another book to the Now and Forever series…

I had such a great time writing the short story “A Christmas Miracle for Jake” that I have been mulling over in my brain the idea to expand upon it.  I was tinkering around with the idea of making it part of the Now and Forever series, but as a prequel.  Jacob’s story really needs to be told.  How did he become such a broken man unable to trust his own heart?

In For the Love of Quinn, I touched upon his story a bit through conversations between Jake and his brother Eric and other characters.  The woman who broke his heart and nearly drove Jake to kill himself keeps coming up in my head.  Julia Santos is a piece of work.  She is the classic “mean girl” all grown up and even more evil, sort of like Sharon Stone’s character in Basic Instinct.  Catherine Tramell was wild, devastatingly beautiful, used to getting what she wanted when she wanted it no matter the costs.  For her, murder was not off limits.  Would it be for Julia? I think the idea that a man would nearly die in a motorcycle accident because he was so distraught over seeing her with another man would be just the kind of thing to get her juices flowing.

Oh, now my mind is definitely going there!

While Jake is in his coma and on The Island with Quinn, Julia is busy stirring up trouble in the real world for him and his family.  Unfortunately for her, she doesn’t know that the Hartley family has two Angels watching over them and Jake.  Of course there is Karma and Lady Fate waiting to get their claws into Ms. Santos!

Okay, looks like I got some writing to do! I am going with the title The Island for now. Any other ideas?