29 August 2012

August Updates!

I had some fantastic news from Siren today…they are incorporating “Lawless Hearts” and “In A Chord” into one printed book!  The title will be "Entwined Hearts" and as soon as I get a release date I’ll tweet it!

Editing on my fantasy novel will be pushed back for a few weeks.  Right now I’m almost finished with book one in a planned three book ménage story about a woman who is clairvoyant, but her unique gift is she is only able to connect with murdered souls.  Book one will deal with one man, book two with the other, and then the final book will having them coming together.  Expectant date for publication is 2013.

Also planned for publication in 2013 is the sequel to “Love Story for a Snow Princess”.  The next book centers on Caleb Tasker, a laid back forest ranger who decides to take a vacation in Malibu, California, thanks to his friend Thea (Snow) Winters.  There he meets Delilah Ward, a woman who has fought for everything she has.  These two opposites are going to need a lot of patience to make their love work!

I’ll be participating in TRR’s LGBT Madness Hop Sept. 27th with a special prize to give away!  Also, my upcoming novel “The Song Bird” will be released October 10th, and I’ll be running a contest for a lucky winner to win a free ebook!  And October 19th I’ll be part of the Alpha Male Blog Hop with another chance to win prizes! 

My next blog will be after the weekend.  Hope every one has a safe and fun Labor Day weekend!

26 August 2012

Dystopian Worlds – Truly Scary Futures

Though the idea of a dystopian society has been recorded differently in many novels, each tale presents a cold and unfeeling world, chilling to the bone and imagination.  And yet, we can’t get enough of them.  What is it that drives us to study these stories?  A direct contrast to the thoughts of a perfect utopia, we are made to read 1984 and Animal Farm in school, we write essays on Atlas Shrugged and The Handmaid’s Tale for college, learning about certain society behavior, and a bit of our own.  And we read it in popular bestsellers like The Hunger Games.

Movies about dystopian societies have tried coming to life from the pages of a book;  ‘Blade Runner’, from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, and ‘The Running Man’, who was written under Stephen King’s alias of Richard Bachman.  Popular themes are dehumanization, totalitarian government, and post-apocalyptic society, some of my favorite films are 'Equilibrium', 'Logan's Run', 'Akira', 'Serenity', 'Mad Max Movies', 'The Running Man', and 'Total Recall'. 

I’ve even tried my own version of such a world in my erotica romance novels, Spirals, and its sequel, Kismet.  I’ve enjoyed creating such a future so much I’m sure these won’t be my last venture into it.  I have written two strong females tested to their very brink of breaking.  I absolutely loved pushing, not only my characters, but my own limits as well.

But what draws into such grim glimpses into a future?  Is it the hope we never face it ourselves, or the thought we could be headed that way?  Do these stories make us happy to have the lives he have?  Or do we connect to the hero/heroine in a fundamental way?  Maybe it’s the fight of the human spirit that we enjoy the most, connecting with a hero or heroine and going on the journey with him or her.  Second guessing their decisions or trying to problem solve with them, as well as watching him or her over come almost impossible odds in an environment we hope never to find ourselves. 

Some of my favorite dystopian romance stories are Countdown by Michelle Maddox and the Matched series by Ally Condie, Legend by Marie Lu, but there are a slew of others on my to read list.  Anyone have any suggestions for reading material?

16 August 2012

Four Women I Love: Victoria Beckham, Maya Banks, ONJ & Lisa Kleypas

Victoria Beckham

Yes, you read that right.  Anyone who knows me knows I am a big supporter of Girl Power, so who better to have a girl crush on than one of the women who actually put the phrase on the map?  I can’t tell you how hard I laughed when I saw her in Spice World, wearing a camouflage designer dress and calmly walking past all the military obstacles while the other girls were sweating them out.  And come on!...she’s married to one of the most gorgeous men in the world!  While living in France I picked up her autobiography and read it and really liked learning about her story.  I guess because I also have a self-deprecating sense of humor I get a lot of what she says, while most people find fault with everything that comes out of her mouth.  She has a flare of fashion I will never have, and a body that can wear anything.  Currently she’s on the cover of Glamour magazine looking, I must say, FABULOUS!

Maya Banks

For those of you who don’t know, Maya Banks is the reason I have an up and coming writing career.  Though I’d been writing stories forever, back in 2004 I was living in Paris (France) and wrote a book titled “Black Leather Pants”.  After coming back to the states, the story just sat for a few years lacking something until I read an erotica novel titled “Colters’ Woman” by Maya Banks.  I had never read anything like it before and I knew, right then and there, that’s what “Black Leather Pants” needed to be…an erotica novel.  Maya Banks has the type of career I strive to achieve one day.  In 2010 I was able to meet her at a luncheon we were both signing books at and I was awe struck!  The other day I read her Harlequin Desire book “Wanted by Her Lost Love” in one night, I couldn’t put it down!  Really, I was so engrossed I read it in one sitting…now that’s the mark of a truly talented author.

Olivia Newton-John

Yes, this is a bit of departure from the other two but I had to put ONJ in this list because I’ve practically worshiped her since I saw Grease back in the 70’s.  I think I was the only girl in my high school singing songs from her Physical album while everyone else was singing Duran Duran and Poison.  Over the years my love of her music grew and I think she’d be the only celebrity that, if I met her in person, I think I would faint.  I got to see her twice in concert and if I could, I’d go see her all the time.  I can’t hardly believe she’s only a few years younger than my mother and I must admit, I’m having a hard time with the plastic surgery she’s gotten…but to each their own, right?  I’d love for her to release another album but not sure if that’s the direction she’s heading in her life.  In any case, ONJ will always be my number one favorite singers of all time.

Lisa Kleypas

If Lisa Kleypas needed someone to walk her dogs and pick up their poop, I would volunteer and be so frickin’ happy doing it.  Why?  Because it’s Lisa Kleypas!  I love her for different reasons than I love Maya Banks, but for the same reason as they are both inspirations to me and my career.  When you pick up a Lisa Kleypas novel, you know exactly what you’re going to get: fantastic writing, an interesting plot, memorable characters and strong heroines.  In this day and age when books are so expensive, I have no problem shelling out eight dollars on one of her books because I know I am going to love it.  In my personal bookshelf collection I have just about all of her novels…as well as a few books on CD.  Whenever someone asks me advice on writing, I always bring up Lisa Kleypas novels, because they are a great study in the perfection of writing.  

12 August 2012

Divine Deviled Eggs

Alas, I cannot take credit for these scrumptious deviled eggs recipe (Real Simple magazine May 2012) BUT I loved them so much I had to share!  Deviled eggs have been around since ancient Rome but lately they've fallen out of favor because people are little more health conscious these days.  However, eggs are low-calorie and protein rich.  Most of the fat and all of the saturated fat is in the yolk so that, combined with the classic recipe of mayonnaise, and there goes the diet!  But switch out the mayo with Greek yogurt and vinegar, or another type of low fat mayo substitute, and deviled eggs aren't that sinful to consume!

These added ingredients are sure to make the taste buds sing.  First up, add 1-2 teaspoons of wasabi paste.  Mix the paste into the yolk mixture.  Dividing evenly, spoon into the egg white cups and sprinkle with  sesame seeds.  Mm mmm!!!!

Or if you've ever wondered what Baltimore Crabs tasted like, use 1/2 teaspoon of seafood seasoning (like Old Bay), 1/4 cup lump crabmeat (about 2 ounces), and 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh chives.  Mix the seafood seasoning into the yolk mixture.  Fold in half the crab.  Dividing evenly, spoon into the egg white cups, top with the remaining crab and sprinkle with chives.  

Or, if your into a spicy flair, use 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 12 slices pickled jalapeno, and 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chili pepper.  Mix the cumin into the yolk mixture.  Dividing evenly, spoon into the egg white cups and top with the jalapeno.  Sprinkle with the ground chipotle.

Any of these will definitely liven up any party platters, especially if you don't tell anyone about the wasabi paste!  LOL!  Enjoy!

08 August 2012

Romance in France

Paris is probably the widely thought city for love and romance.  The architecture, the history, the passion, the friendliness of the people…seriously, I never had a bit of problem with the French.  Of course, I always said I was Canadian and they love Canada, so maybe I’m a bit off on that point.

I’ve been to Paris three times and lived there for four months in 2004, so I think I have a fair bit of opinion on why I think Paris should be the second famous city for love and romance.  What, may you ask is the first?  I would have to say Giverny, France.  Some might recognize the name immediately as the home of Claude Monet.  And while this little trip happened eight years ago, and I’m sure the area has been modernized now, in 2004 it was the perfect little sidetrip for my boyfriend and myself.

I recommend taking the trip to Giverny in Spring, because the train trip from Paris is on one of those trains that still has vinyl on the seat.  In spring, it won’t be so hot for your thigh skin to melt into it, saving you a little discomfort.  When you get to Vernon, you will realize that Giverny is about three miles away, and to preserve the historical importance of Monet’s house, you will be told the best way to get there is bike riding. 

Let me assure you, even if your ass is not prepared for a three mile bike ride, the countryside is mainly level and there is a marked path to follow.  Just as soon as you get through the city of Vernon, that is.  Once you get to the house and fall in love with the flowers (again, Springtime is best for optimal enjoyment of the flower gardens and numerous bees), you notice that there is a parking lot full of cars and you start to wonder where the hell did they come from because by now your tail bone is sore as heck!  

The bridge of the lily pond is breathtaking.  You know the one I’m talking about.  It’s the most romantic place on earth to stand on, hold the hand of your loved one, and blink like crazy as about a hundred pictures are all snapped at once because you two make such a lovely picture.

As you walk through the house and take the tour, you will slowly come to realize that at the end of the day you now have to bike ride the three miles back.  If you fail to make the last train back to Paris, you’ll have to find a room somewhere, so I hope you can speak French.  And also, by the end of the day, you’ll discover most of the restaurants are closed, so McDonalds it is.

-Beth D. Carter…
…who really had a lovely time Giverny!!


01 August 2012

Lowdown Wednesday 1 August 2012

 I’ve had a heckuva LOOOOONG weekend! 

Writing has been flying on my next novel, set in town of Alecia Falls, Washington, a city I created which started in In A Chord and showed up again in my upcoming novel, The Song Bird.  This new book involves a murder mystery and a clairvoyant and a sexy Detective. 

Plus I’ve got another story I’m working on as well, a sequel to Love Story for a Snow Princess.  I’m not ready to share all the details but I will say its Caleb’s love story, for those of you who have read the first one (or those of you planning to read it soon!).    

And of course, the Olympics are on.  I LOVE the Olympics.  I was slightly disappointed by the opening ceremony.  I thought they were on par with the Torino opening…a lot of glitz but left you thinking “What the hell?”

I am happy to announce that I found an editor for a novel I wrote about ten years ago.  It’s not a romance or an erotica.  It’s a fantasy novel and it’s the first book I ever wrote.  Set at a little less than 160,000 words (wow!  That’s a huge book!), it took me two years to write.  I plan to self publish it and have it available on such sights like Amazon.com.  Work will begin at the end of August and I’ll have updates as it progresses.

As for the Hero Hop blog hop I was a part of…WOW!  I’m overjoyed at the positive comments and the number of people who visited with me and Paden Winters.  In fact, I had so many responses that I decided on three winners!  These winners were chosen at random by placing their names in a basket and my son (who is five) picking them.  And the winners are:

1. Damian Bloodstone

2. Ora

3. Brandi Slater

Again, my thanks to everyone taking time out to visit with me on the Hop!  I wish I could give everyone a copy of the ebook. Sometime in October my next historical erotica ménage titled The Song Bird will be published, so I will set up a contest to win that one!  Set in turbulent San Francisco era of 1855, it’s about a woman who travels there to find her missing sister and meets two enigmatic men.  PLUS I’ll be doing the Alpha Male Blog Hop on October 19th -22nd. 

But I’ll be having lots more on my blog site so check back often or follow me on twitter @BethDCarter for updates!