Thursday Threads

This week’s Thursday Threads features Tina Susedik‘s wonderful romantic mystery, Riding For Love:

Riding for Love Cover

Riding for Love
Romantic Mystery
Sensuous

Bio: As a child, Tina always had stories floating around in her head, but had no idea those stories could be put down in book form. One day her brother (yes, her brother) introduced her to Kathleen Woodiwiss’ The Flame and the Flower. Tina was hooked and a love of reading and eventually writing romance began. She is also a non-fiction writer with six history books in print.

Tina has been married for over forty years and lives in Wisconsin. After careers in accounting and teaching (not necessarily at the same time), she found her career in writing is what fulfills her the most. When not writing, she loves camping, hiking, photography, reading and playing with her five grandchildren.

She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Wisconsin Romance Writers of America.

 

 
Blurb: Eve Dayton, owner of a riding ranch, rose above her childhood past and overcame the emotional damage her boyfriend caused when he married another woman. When someone starts sabotaging her ranch, Eve is desperate to find the culprit before she loses everything. Is it a coincidence or is the return of Denton Johanson tied to the mystery?

Divorced Denton Johanson returns to his hometown to help convict the embezzling controller of the family business. When he runs into Eve, he realizes his feelings for her are still strong enough to try and win her back. His fear of horses won’t get in the way of his goal and decides the only way to be near her is to take riding lessons from her. Can he convince her that his love is real and he is not behind the mystery surrounding the ranch?

 

Excerpt:

“Darn. I’m late.” Eve grabbed her mug of coffee and the clipboard with her notes for the day. “I’m never late. Ever. This is what happens when you let a man get under your skin.” She jogged across the driveway to the barn. The clients weren’t due for another half an hour, but she wanted to meet with Tom early to go over her notes once more to make sure the horses matched the riders.

Her steps slowed as she entered the barn. Tom was talking to one of the employees at the other end of the barn. Since he didn’t immediately notice her, she took her time walking through the building, making sure the tack was all in place according to horse, helmets and riding sticks hung in order of size, horses back in their stalls from the field, and no stray horse droppings or straw littered the barn floor.

As she passed the row of licenses showing their employees were qualified as riding instructors, and she and Tom owners, he turned and waved her over.

“So how did your evening go last night, sweetheart? You danced quite a bit with Denton.”

“Yeah.” She batted her eyes at her friend. “You didn’t have anything to do with it would you, honeybunch?”

Tom laughed, threw an arm around her shoulders, and gave her a hug. “Ah, busted.” He kissed her forehead. “He’s not so bad, you know, Eve. He’s made some mistakes, and I believe he sincerely regrets them. But if he does anything to hurt you again, he’ll find himself lying in a pile of manure, face first.”

Eve grimaced at the image. “Well, I hate to say you’re right, but I did have a good time. I forgot how easy it is to talk to him. Besides, he can’t hurt me if I don’t let him.” She slid the clipboard from under her arm and started flipping through pages. “That doesn’t mean I’m still not mad at him. It’s going to take more than a few dances to get me into his good graces.”

“Give him a run for his money?”

“Yeah,” she muttered, glancing at her watch. “Now, let’s compare notes before our subjects arrive.”

For the next few minutes they walked companionably through the barn looking at stock, comparing horse sizes, and temperaments to clients. The stable of twenty-five horses ranged from duns to piebalds to grays and Appaloosas and included a few ponies for younger riders. Eve loved them all.

“I’ll take the slowest, laziest one with the shortest legs,” Denton said, interrupting Eve and Tom’s decision to pasture a smaller horse needing to be re-shod.

Eve nearly dropped the clipboard at the sound of Denton’s deep voice as she locked the stall door and tacked a note to the front for her staff. Keeping her back to him, she didn’t hide a smile at his nervous tone. By the time she faced him, the smile disappeared, but not the heat that had risen to her face.

“Mornin’, Dent,” Tom said, stepping over to the next stall. “I think old Della here will do fine for you.” He ran a hand down the bay’s forelock, over the blaze markings to her nose and slipped a sugar cube into her mouth. “Eve’s helped so many people learn to ride she’d teach me a few things, and I taught her to ride.”

Denton let out a breath of air and took a few steps closer to the stall. “Good to know.”

“Don’t be misled, Dent,” Eve said, following Tom’s hands down the horse’s face. “Della may be getting on in years, but she’s a horse and horses can pull a few tricks on the unwary.” Denton’s Adam’s apple slipped up and down as he swallowed a gulp. She pressed the clipboard to her chest. “Don’t worry, since I’ll be training you, I won’t let anything happen.”

“To me or the horse?” he asked.

“Good question,” Eve answered over her shoulder as she sauntered away from the men.

***

Denton raked his fingers through his hair and suppressed a shudder.

“Scared you, didn’t she?”

“And you’re enjoying it, aren’t you?”

“Don’t worry, boy. She’s never let a customer get hurt. Yet.”

Denton breathed a sigh of relief. He wouldn’t get hurt, not physically, anyway, he thought. His emotions were another matter. His heart tripped a little faster as he watched her walk through the barn.

The rest of the group began entering the building. Amazing how, in such a short time, a person learned to recognize someone, even by their black silhouette against the bright sun-lit entrance to the barn. The unmistakable buxom figure of Jackie was outlined in the door.

His breath left him and he quickly searched for a place to hide. After her seduction attempts at the dance, she was the last person he wanted to encounter. He still felt her body pressed against his, his arm muscles even a little sore from trying to stop her from performing the vertical bedroom tango publicly. The next woman to use his body in any way would be Eve, whether she knew it or not.

So desperate to be out of Jackie’s sight, he contemplated leaping over the gate into his horse’s stall and hiding behind her rump, then grabbing a shovel to start mucking out manure or take a hoof pick and clean out her hoofs. Before he could consider the wisdom of doing any of those things, Jackie spotted him.

He groaned. Everyone gathering at the end of the barn turned as she shrilled out his name. He moved toward her. If he moved fast enough, he’d get to the others and mingle, be able to hide among his compatriots, then shove her off on some other, more willing, male in the group.

 

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Riding-for-Love-ebook/dp/B00CLJD31Q

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/riding-for-love-tina-susedik/1119333999?ean=9781619354289

 

You can find Tina at:

Blog: http://tinasusedik.wordpress.com./

Twitter: @tinasusedik

Website: TinaSusedik.com

Facebook: Tina Susedik, Author

Soul Mate Publishing: http://www.soulmatepublishing.com/riding-for-love/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17908316-riding-for-love

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Hanging with the heavy hitters. #wisrwa14

I just returned from an incredible weekend at the WisRWA Write Touch conference (#wisrwa14). It was an inspiring meet-up with romance authors from all over the country (a couple flew in all the way from California). The conference also included some industry heavy hitters.

Panel

Here’s an agent-editor panel that included Liz Pelletier (Entangled Publishing), Adam Wilson (Gallery Books), Michelle Grajkowski (3 Seas Literary Agency), my editor Cheryl Yeko (Soul Mate Publishing), Eric Ruben (The Ruben Agency), Leah Hultenschmidt (Grand Central Books), and Rebecca Scherer (The Jane Rotrosen Agency).

 

Authors included:
Lorelie BrownJade LeeGina MaxwellCheryl YekoCarrie LoftyAmy

We also had some great workshops:

Workshop 1Workshop 2

 

And there was plenty of fun.

 

Me & Gina L Maxwell

Here Gina Maxwell and I find out we have something in common.

The highlight of the weekend for me was having Son of Thunder receive 2nd place in the FUTURISTIC/FANTASY/PARANORMAL/TIME TRAVEL category of the 2014 WisRWA Write Touch Readers’ Choice Award Contest.

Son of Thunder MinicoverAward

It finished just behind A Soul For Vengeance by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Christa McHugh. My congratulations to her.
Crista-book-3-200x300

Now I have to come down out of the clouds and get back into my writing.

 

Fab 5

This goes out to anyone who would like to be a published romance author:

Last year I entered Son of Thunder in the WisRWA Fab 5 contest. I didn’t win, I didn’t even show, but based on the input I got from the contest judges I ended up doing a complete rewrite. It made my story stronger and fixed some glaring problems. I don’t know if I would have sold it without the feedback I got from this wonderful contest. It was well worth the entry fee. Well, this year’s contest is in full swing, and if you have a work in progress you’d like to get in front of some very talented judges, think about entering.

Here’s all the info:

The Wisconsin Romance Writers of America’s Fabulous Five contest is still accepting entries!

This contest is available to writers unpublished in book-length romance fiction during the past five years. Self-published authors may also apply! Your entry must be limited to the first 2,500 words of your manuscript and must be submitted electronically. For an entry form and complete details regarding rules and eligibility, click the Contests link on our website: http://www.wisrwa.org/

Grab this opportunity for a critique of your work and the chance one of our final round judges may ask to see more of it. In last year’s contest, agents and editors requested eight full manuscripts and eight partials!

Inspirational writers: We’ve established a new category just for you!

Our fees continue to be among the lowest for contests of this type – just $18 for WisRWA members and $20 for all other entrants.

Deadline for entries is 11:59 CST, March 1, 2013. Categories are limited to thirty-five submissions each, so enter early to beat the rush!

Here’s our lineup of categories and final round judges for 2013:

Historical : Amanda Bergeron, Harper Collins

Inspirational: Natasha Kern, Natasha Kern Literary Agency

Paranormal/Fantasy/
Futuristic/Time Travel: Latoya Smith, Grand Central Publishing

Romantic Suspense: Katherine Pelz, Berkley

Series Contemporary
(Long/short): Dana Hopkins, Harlequin Enterprises

Single Title: Nalini Akolekar, Spencerhill Associates

Women’s Fiction: Paige Wheeler, Folio Literary

Young Adult Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary Agency

Winter projects

It’s shaping up to be a great winter for writing. This morning I sent the newly formatted and pre-edited copy of Son of Thunder off to Soul Mate Publishing. I am so looking forward to working with one of their editors to really polish my baby.

My next goal will be to finish Seeds of Immortality, the third book in my Demons Rising series. I am very close to the end and hope to have it done, edited and to my beta readers before Thanksgiving.

After that I plan to concentrate on Daughter of Darkness, the sequel to Son of Thunder.

On top of all that, I have two very exciting projects in the works. I was discussing a concept I had with a couple of my fellow RWA romance writers. The idea is that I co-write a novel with one of them. They would write the female perspective in the book and I would write the male perspective. We would alternate chapters and see if anything materialized. Two of the ladies said they’d be interested in the project so about the middle of September, one of them and I started writing a paranormal-erotic-thriller we’re calling Mind Games. We’re 20 chapters in and I think the story is fantastic. A few weeks ago the second author jumped on board and we began a YA action-adventure novel. It’s been a fun challenge for me to jump between the two stories and I am excited about what we’re producing. I will bring you more information on these projects as they move forward.

Now, that should be plenty to occupy me right through the end of the year and beyond, however certain characters, from the other novels I have on the back burners, have started calling to me lately. They really want to tell their stories.

It looks like my New Year’s Resolution this year will be to be prolific.

Stay tuned,

Steve

 

New interest!

Wow, where has June gone? Between the WisRWA convention, some fix-up work around the house, and getting a really good start on Knight of the Night I’ve completely ignored my blog. Okay, there was also a fabulous wine tasting trip in there somewhere as well. Still not a good excuse. (Bad author…no cookie!!!)

So here’s an update on my writing. I have a bit of new interest in my novel, Son of Thunder. In May I did a complete rewrite of the first chapter, and another edit run on it, and I feel it’s much better book now. In the past few weeks I have received full read requests from an agent and a publisher. Fingers are crossed (even a few toes). I think it’s time for another round of query emails, then it’s right back to the grindstone on the next Demons Rising novella.

I am pretty sure that Knight of the Night will be the last book in the demons rising saga, making it a trilogy. Not that the story will be completed, in fact it will just be begun. I plan that the three books will be an introduction to a very dark future world and set the stage for a series of full novels set here. The demons will have risen to power and the Templars and Arcanists will be fighting an uphill battle that will span two worlds (possibly three). My mind is bursting with possibilities that I can’t wait to get down on paper (well in the computer anyway).

And just for the heck of it, (and because it’s slipping down the page) here’s a link to the promo video for There’s no such thing as Werwolves.

Click here to view video!

Note: If you LIKE/SHARE/SUBSCRIBE the author will get his cookie!

Until next time,

Steve


 

 

The hazy days of summer.

It’s been a busy couple of weeks and I realized this morning just how long it has been since i updated this blog. Sorry about that. It was nice to keep the Book Trailer front and center for the past few weeks. I have received some nice comments on it and am very happy with how it came out.

June 1st – 3rd I attended the WisRWA Write Touch Conference. It was an excellent experience. Over 90 romance writers getting together to talk writing, publishing and the romance genre. I met two other male romance writers, and felt complete acceptance from the entire group. I did my first author signing, in a room filled with other published romance authors. It was quite exciting, and I think it went well. I was also able to pitch two agents that attended the conference, and received a request for a full read of Son of Thunder. It’s a very reputable agency. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that my search for a new agent is coming to a close.

Overall I came out charged up and ready to dive into the next Demons Rising novella: Knight of the night. This is the story of Salina Frye (from Werewolves) and Ryan Chamberlain (from Templar) and deals with the events following the closing of the demon gate. As the ravaged Arcanist and Templar forces seek to deal with the rising demon domination of their world, the rival groups need to put aside three thousand years of animosity and learn to work together. Expect some real fireworks.

Oh, and there’s one last thing:

FREE, FREE, FREE, FREE, FREE…

I have decided to put the Kindle version of Swiftly Beats the Heart for free starting Wednesday (6/13) and running through Sunday (6/17), so if you are new to my blog, or just missed it in February, here’s a chance to add it to your Kindle collection.

Until next time,

Steve

Finding your people

I was watching an interesting video this morning that I’d like to share.

Here’s the link:

If the above link isn’t working click here.

There’s a place toward the end where he tells the wonderful story of a girl that becomes a dancer. She’s sent to a dancing school and is suddenly surrounded by people just like her. I could so identify with this. I love my small hometown, and have lived here all my life, but it is not the kind of place that nurtures creativity. I’ve been putting words on the blank page (off and on) for over thirty years, thinking writing is a lonely type of thing, done in seclusion and only brought out when you have something completed. How wrong I was.

Just last year I was invited into a wonderful writing group call Writers Voice. Like that little girl in the story above I was suddenly in a group of people like me. A place we could share parts of stories, ideas, and community.

A bit later I discovered the Wisconsin Romance Writers of America. Again, people like me. The members of my local branch have been so incredibly supportive, and the online community gives me a consistent source of spiritual nourishment and encouragement.

I’ve always felt a bit of an outcast in my home community – that guy that just didn’t fit in – but when I’m with these people…I’m home.

So I guess what I’m saying here is: No matter what you are pursuing, seek out and find people like you. Believe in yourself and find the people who will believe in and support your dreams.

To all those who understand…thanks!

Steve