Catch and Release

fish

 

The weather is getting warmer and the days are getting longer. Spring is on the horizon. I love spring, with the flowers starting to bloom and the trees budding out. It’s like nature wakes up and comes alive.

It’s also when I get the urge to sit on the bank of some body of water and cast the old fishing pole out. There’s something very soothing about just being outside and watching the sun glisten off the water. Sometimes, if the fish aren’t biting, I’ll put my pole aside and just sit down and enjoy a quiet moment with the birds and turtles. There’s probably snakes too, but I don’t like to think too much about those! Lol.

This weekend, I found another benefit to fishing. I was sitting at the computer working on Once and For All, my next novel, and I got stuck.  So, I sat there for a bit, trying to figure out how to get unstuck. It wasn’t happening. It was so pretty outside that I decided to take a walk down to the pond and cast a few times to see if anything was biting.

You know what? I didn’t get a single fish, what I did get was the inspiration to not only finish the scene I was working on, but three other scenes as well! I have enough to write ALL week! So, I’m definitely thinking about adding fishing to my brainstorming repertoire. On a side note, I did go back after I got some words in and I caught a two small fish. So, I have to say that day was a win-win situation!

One of my characters, Carly, likes to fish too. Only most of her fishing is for men. In my novella, Catch and Release, Carly goes on the search to find the perfect man by Christmas. She goes on all kinds of horrible dates in an attempt to find Mr. Right. Will she catch the prize fish or will she end up releasing them all?

Here’s an excerpt…

Joey is sitting at the bar. As always, he’s wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and a ball cap. Joey is quite the looker, and he’s been known to turn heads. He’s a little bit taller than me, has dark hair, dark eyes, and an olive complexion. But my favorite thing about Joey is his dimples. Which he flashes regularly.

“Not much. Been thinking about writing again,” I say. I usually spend a few hours in the morning pondering ideas and writing some down. So far, the only thing that has stuck is something about dating and men. I haven’t completely figured a story out yet, but I will.

“It’s about time,” he says. “So whatcha thinking of writing about?”

“I’m kind of thinking about writing a book about dating.”

He almost chokes. “You? A book on dating? Are you writing about what not to do?”

That gets him a punch in the arm, which he and Ryder get often. Someone has to keep them in line.

“No, I’m serious,” I say. “It’s the holidays. I’m tired of being alone. I want someone to trim the tree with. I want someone to kiss under the mistletoe and to kiss on New Year’s Eve. I’m thinking about seriously looking for Prince Charming for Christmas. I’m thinking about keeping a journal and seeing what I can come up with for writing ideas. In fact, I already put my profile back online. They promise plenty of fish. I just hope they have some fish worth keeping.”

“You know what I told you about bringing home those shad.”

One night when I was complaining about my love life, Joey told me about shad, a type of throw-back fish that no one wants. He told me that night, “Carly, you’ve got to stop bringing home those stinky, no good fish. Look for something you want to keep.”

“You can’t catch a man by Christmas. I don’t care how well stocked the pond is.” I punch him in the arm again. “Oh really?”

“Oh really what?” I smile when I hear Ryder’s voice. I saw him when I came in. He was playing pool. I didn’t want to interrupt so I went to sit with Joey by the bar.

I sigh. “I need a man.”

He smiles mischievously and winks. “Well, you got one right here. What exactly is it that you need?”

My stomach flutters, my mind seizes up like cement, and I blurt out, “Fishing. I need to go fishing.”

He cuts his eyes at me. Ryder is gorgeous. He has a genuine smile that lights up his face. But what gets me is his eyes. He has the most amazing brown eyes of anyone I’ve ever seen. They sparkle with his mischievous sense of humor. When he cares for you, you know it because you can see it. So, I know he cares about me. I just don’t know if it’s more than friendship.

“You? Fishing?”

“Yes. I like to fish.” I stare into his eyes for a moment more, then stammer, “Music. We need music.”

Want to read more of Carly’s search? Check out Catch and Release! It’s FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

CatchReleaseeBook

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2vUQdFv

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Merry Christmas at The Myrtles!

 

20191213_194322I love The Myrtles Plantation in St. Francisville, LA. I’m a big fan of history, and I love touring old houses and learning about how people lived in other eras. The bonus with The Myrtles is that is supposed to be one of the most haunted places in the nation. So, when you get a tour, you get a dose of the supernatural along with your history.

When I got the opportunity to participate in a holiday market at The Myrtles, I jumped at the chance. Not only was it a chance to market my books and get out and talk to people, I could go tour and ghost hunt again.

The house and grounds were all decorated for the holidays too. It was really beautiful to see! There was a huge tree in the foyer, and other rooms had smaller trees themed to the room. It definitely got me into the Christmas spirit.

Do you know what else gets me into the holiday feeling? A good Christmas romance book! I’ve found some good ones for you! Go check them out!

Visit The Myrtles online: https://www.myrtlesplantation.com/

1. The Worst Christmas Ever by Rebecca Paulinyi

worstchristmasWhen Shirley ‘Lee’ Jones returns home from an awful day at the office, the last thing she expects to find is her husband in bed with another woman. Six weeks until Christmas, and Lee finds the life she had so carefully planned has been utterly decimated.

Hurt, angry and confused, Lee makes a whirlwind decision to drive her problems away and ends up in Totnes, an eccentric town in the heart of Devon. As Christmas approaches, Lee tries to figure out what path her life will follow now, as she looks at it from the perspective of a soon-to-be 31-year-old divorcée.

Can she ever return to her normal life? Or is a new reality – and a new man – on the horizon?

Will this be the worst Christmas ever?

Read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2RVcoEf

2. A Picture Perfect Christmas by J.P. Uvalle

PPCUvalleYou never forget your first love. No matter how hard you try.

Darren Hayes, her once-best friend, has been gone longer than Melody Boyer, can remember. Well, that’s a lie. He’s been gone four years, eleven months, three weeks and two days. Since Christmas Eve: the night they took their friendship to the next level. He rocked her world and made all her fantasies come true only to leave her behind in Hudson Heights to see the world through his lens.

And now he’s back, Mr. famous photographer walking into town like he didn’t destroy her world years ago. Showing up on her doorstep asking for forgiveness and a chance to be friends again. But friends don’t kiss like he kisses her goodbye… and when he proposes they become friends with benefits and see what develops, Melody can’t help but wonder what the negatives are. Can she agree to these terms and have the best sex of her life anytime she wants, no strings attached? Or will Darren capture her heart only to break it all over again?

If you like over-the-top romance with a hint of Christmas and some tantalizing sexy times in between, then this delicious treat is for you.

Only 99 Cents!!!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2EmpMsY

3. Tinder Heart by Bree Pierce

tinderWhen those closest to me stabbed me in the back, I ran away from the city for a chance to heal. Then I met Will, my living, breathing, fantasy man. And the epitome of everything that could break my heart. He might walk away if I tell him the secret I hold so close—if I don’t push him away first. Can I trust a man with my heart one more time?

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2YSj8Uw

4. Unexpected Mistletoe Kisses by Milan Watson

umkMegan fell in love with Kingston when she was four years old. How much longer can she deny the feelings she has secretly harbored for her brother’s best friend?

After he saved her kitten, Megan Price knew that Prince Charming didn’t always ride a white horse. Sometimes he was your brother’s best friend. As the years moved on Kingston became more and more handsome and so did the long line of broken hearts he left in his wake.

The first time Kingston Halloway noticed that little Megan had grown up, was the evening of her prom. He had paid for it with a bloody nose and a promise to Alex to never look her way again. For years he has ignored her chestnut hair and amber eyes and the way her smile lit up a room.

When Megan unwittingly buys the house next to Kingston and hires him to help her renovate, can they both keep denying the attraction between them?

Read for FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2EorzgU

5. Hometown Heroes by Various Authors

HHeBookCommunity. Courage. Compassion.

Hometown Heroes brings you five Christmas romances that celebrate everyday heroes.

From paranormal to contemporary to historical, there’s something here to fill everyone with the spirit of the season.

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Cajun Navy Relief, an organization dedicated to helping neighbors in distress.

Only 99 cents for a limited time!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2YP9jqy

Merry Christmas!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

 

“Saving Grace”

savinggrace

Last year, my publishing company, Bienvenue Press started an annual charity anthology. Hometown Heroes was the title and we included short stories about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. A portion of the proceeds go to the Cajun Navy Foundation.

This year, our stories are about rescue animals, a subject near and dear to my heart. Donations from Finally Home, will go to various animal rescue programs. I had originally planned to do a Chateau Rouge story, but no ideas just jumped out me. Then it hit me, Grace, from Running on Empty had a story to finish. Her happily-ever-after wasn’t complete yet. Her sidekick is Furby, a dog she rescued, and a perfect subject for a story.

Furby was actually one of my dogs, as was Sammy, and Oscar, all who have passed on. Furby, the last one, crossed the rainbow bridge just a little over a year ago.  And man, did I struggle with this one. It was tough to write. However, I am very pleased with how it turned out, and I was also pleasantly surprised when it took the Boonies in a different direction. You’ll have to read it to find out what this is though. 🙂

For now, I have an excerpt for you. Release date is set for December 10th, so you don’t have to wait long!

“Saving Grace”

Grace hesitated a moment before sliding her key into the apartment door. She took a breath to calm herself before facing Gabe and his sweet but concerned eyes.

He always had that look when she came home from visiting with Dr. Melancon. As if he wanted to ask what they had talked about even though he already knew. These sessions had been his idea when her random outbursts of anger had almost caused them to break up at one point.

It was all Brent’s fault, she thought. Although Dr. Mel had told her that it was reactive thinking and she needed to be proactive.

Grace rolled her eyes. Proactive would be driving to New Orleans, finding him and punching him in the throat.

She heard a bark from inside and knew she had been discovered. With a sigh, she opened the door and pasted a smile on her face.

Furby, the little white ball of fur she had rescued years ago came running up to her. His paws tip tapping on the hard wood floors of their small Austin apartment.

When he reached her, he jumped, then did his welcome home dance on his back paws. She laughed then, as she always did, and picked him up. She buried her face in his soft fur and squeezed him tight.

Gabe wandered in behind Furby, his lanky form filling the entry way. His green eyes were soft when he smiled at her. “He’s been watching the door for you.”

She held him out so she could look him in the eyes, “You did, Furb? You’re such a good boy.” With that, she placed him back down on the ground gently and he ran away. Back to the comfort of the dog bed they’d placed beside the sofa. He liked to turn it around so the high back faced the front. He looked like an overgrown rat defending the Queen’s castle.

Be sure to be alerted on release day!

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Peace! I’m out!

A.L. Vincent

Tales from Rougarou Fest!

RR

A couple of years ago, Houma, Louisiana started a new festival all about the Rougarou. What is a rougarou, you ask? It’s like a Cajun werewolf. It has the head of a wolf or a dog, and the body of a human. This new festival also wants to raise awareness of our disappearing coastline and donates proceeds to the Wetlands Discovery Center.

This festival has a little bit of everything, and if you love Halloween like I do, then you’ll be a fan as well. There’s a costume contest, and I saw Minions, Michael Myers, Clark Kent, and others enter to win. But that’s not all, there’s the witches, and the Voodoo Kings and Queens too!

Oh, and there’s a parade! Who doesn’t love a good parade? Watch as the aforementioned witches do their thing, the zombies dance to “Thriller’, and see huge skeleton puppets. It’s family and dog friendly so feel free to bring the entire family.

Want more information? Click the link below:

https://rougaroufest.org/

In the spirit of the rougarou, I’m including some links to books with all kinds of  werewolves and shifters. Enjoy!

1. Phoenix Rising by Madison Granger

prTorie Masters is a curvy, middle-aged, divorcee with a normal job and family life. Her penchant for paranormal romances leaves her longing for the day she will meet the man who will sweep her off of her feet. She’s been dreaming a long time.

Quinn McGrath is Liege Lord to a centuries old clan of shifters known as The Kindred. All have been promised a destined mate by the Goddess. He has all but given up finding his.

Sparks fly when Quinn meets Torie. Could his ‘Promised Soul’ finally be real? The eternal mates might not stand a chance as man and nature work against them. From assassination attempts to hurricanes, their future is put to the test across the globe.

Is their bond strong enough to see them through to forever?

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/324l1xn

2. Infinite Blue by Natalina Reis

IBlueWhen a shifter and a human are bound by fate, neither man knows if their connection will be enough to save not only their growing love, but their lives.

Shahin Halcón has been taught that if and when he meets his soul mate, he’ll know immediately. Always the rebel, he doesn’t believe it until the day he crosses paths with Cai, a full-human.

Plagued by unsuccessful relationships and heartache, Cai Banes’s life is quiet and unexciting. When he meets young and wild Shahin, his life is turned upside down, and he’s not sure he likes it.

But neither can deny the powerful pull that draws them together.

Old secrets and ancient myths about cross-species relationships plague their romance and threaten to put their happiness and life at risk. Will their love for each other be strong enough to survive?

ONLY 99 CENTS FOR A LIMITED TIME!!!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2oBMsBi

3. A Deal With Death, by Carrie Pulkinen

dealdeathShe pissed off the Voodoo Spirit of Death.
Now she has to make amends…

Death doesn’t scare Voodoo practitioner Odette Allemand, but dying sure as hell does. Every time she meets her soulmate, her life ends in a horrific murder.

Then she’s reincarnated to have it happen all over again.

Odette is determined to survive this lifetime, but when a sexy werewolf knocks on her door, unearthing emotions she thought she’d buried, her fate is sealed with his enticing kiss.

James Malveaux hasn’t seen Odette since junior high, but the moment they reunite, his wolf wants to claim her as his mate.

That’s if the monster they’ve awakened doesn’t kill them first.

Without the help of the Spirit of Death, they can kiss their lives goodbye. Can James help Odette make peace with her inner demons and the Spirit? Or will the couple be doomed to the same gruesome ending as their countless lives before?

Amazon Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07R4PRC3H

That’s it for me for now!

Bon Chance!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

For even more on the rougarou, check out this article!

“History of the Rougarou: Louisiana’s Warewolf”

https://bit.ly/2BVHySv

The Shoes!

Red Shoes

As I write Once and For All, which is Carly’s story, I find her story really and truly starts in Tangled up in You. She is still in mourning after her brother’s death, and she comes home one day to find her fiance’ in bed with another woman. It’s then that she becomes “stuck”. She doesn’t really move forward with her life. Fear becomes her constant companion. She’s afraid of change of any kind. Her routine is her comfort. Little does she know that a hurricane is about to come and shake up that routine and completely force her out of her comfort zone.

Here’s the scene in Tangled up In You, when Carly comes back from Biloxi. The shoes? They become a very important part of Carly’s new story.

-from Tangled up in You

Emily sipped the drink and considered getting another bowl of gumbo, or jambalaya, or red beans and rice. She was eyeing the table when the door opened again.

A younger blonde walked in, followed by a dark haired man of the same age. Carly and Joey. Grace and Ryder followed. Now everyone was here. Everyone except Noah. And Benjamin, Emily thought, wincing as her heart contracted. A year later, Ben’s loss still hurt.

“If he thinks I’m going to sit here and be sad, he’s got another thing coming. He can be replaced,” Carly said, flopping down on one of the couches.

“What are you talking about, cher?” Daniel asked, getting up from the table.

“Don’t get her started,” Joey said. He went to the bar, poured himself a big shot, then fixed a drink.

“Drink this,” he said, handing the drink to Carly.

Uncomfortable, Emily grabbed her own drink and went to stand beside the fireplace.

“Well, isn’t she a ray of sunshine,” Ryder said to Gabriel as they shook hands.

“Who is?” Carly said, blue eyes flashing. “You didn’t just walk in on your fiancé all fragrance de lecto.”

“Do you mean in flagrante delicto?” Daniel asked.

“Yeah, whatever,” Carly said. “I caught him naked.”

“I’m assuming not alone,” Daniel said.

“No! He wasn’t alone. He had a woman! With shoes!”

Carly started pacing the room, grumbling to herself. Her blonde ponytail bounced behind her, flip-flops slapping on the hardwood floor. Emily caught the words “douche bag” and “throat punch. The others left her alone, so Emily did too.

Have you read the first book in the Bon Chance Boonies series? If you haven’t, you can find it on Amazon. And it’s FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2TsN4Hx

tangledteaser

 

Beach Reads!

Ready to take a trip to the beach? Check out these books perfect for an escape! These are stories of vacations, small town romance, cruise ship romance, and MORE!

Open Book

  1. Daisies in the Outfield (Cape Cod Love), by Carolyn LaRoche

daisies

After his professional baseball career crashed and burned, Jamie escaped to the scenic coastal town of Falmouth for a fresh start. With a new career that fit his personality, Jamie lived life on his terms. His terms were simple—fight fires for the adrenaline rush, coaching MLB hopefuls for the love of the game, and spending his nights with one of the many pretty faces that crossed his path. Plenty of women passed through his life but none had tempted him to settle down.

Until a feisty brunette changed all that. Too bad the sexy paramedic had no interest in Jamie or spending the night with him. She carried an attitude as thick as her New York accent and he wanted to coax a smile on her face. Mandy was running from something and Jamie couldn’t help but be intrigued.

Can a sexy little wager convince a confirmed bachelor and a woman running from her past to take a chance on love?

FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2WVijYF

2. Hawaiian Taboo (The Spirit of Ohana Cruise Ship Series), by Lainy Kaye

hawaiiantaboo

The Land of the Lei
A plan to get laid
All the best laid plans go astray…

Summoned to attend her parents’ renewal of vows aboard the luxurious Spirit of Ohana cruise line, Lissa is reluctant to leave her job, her home—heck, even her pretend cats. But the newly-diagnosed commitment-phobe is eager to escape the memories of her ex-fiancé. And, according to her bestie, a tropical vacation is the perfect opportunity for a no-strings fling to conquer the fear of being trapped that has the scientist’s knees glued firmly together.

Luck is on her side when she meets gorgeous military man, Nate. The handsome soldier is more than happy to re-initiate her into the flirting game—and take the experiment a whole lot further when they meet up again on the cruise. It seems magical Hawaii will melt the polar icecaps protecting Lissa’s heart.

But Nate hides a secret, one that could see Lissa unwittingly break one of life’s most forbidden taboos. When she discovers his deception, Lissa has a very particular revenge in mind. But if revenge is a dish best served cold, she’ll have to find a way to combat both the tropical heat—and the fire Nate lights within her.
Each book in The Spirit of Ohana Cruise Ship series is a standalone, featuring swoony romance, hot banter, steamy on-the-page scenes….and a guaranteed HEA

FREE on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2QFOOZy

3. Falling Into Place (Summer at Falling Pines Book 4) by Stephanie Scott

falling

Mia Hammond hates her job, but after her last career went down in flames, well, a girl needs to keep a roof over her head, right? When she discovers her beloved Camp Falling Pines needs her help, she wonders if those burned bridges from her sports agent days can be rebuilt.

Aaron Stanek needs to turn his family’s expansion hockey team around quick, before they lose their sponsors and any hope of recruiting new talent. Except the players have no respect for him, and his father isn’t helping Aaron find his footing.

When Mia discovers her ex-boyfriend Aaron has a team desperately in need of positive press, it sounds like the perfect match…or it would be, if she didn’t have to work with Aaron, since he’s the reason her career tanked in the first place. Aaron blames himself for what happened—but in his heart, Mia is still the one who got away. They agree to keep their partnership strictly professional, but keeping their feelings in check is another thing entirely.

FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2ZB5XXo

4. Getting Hot with the Scot: A Sometimes in Love Novel by Melonie Johnson

hotwiththescott

Cassie Crow, a pop-culture reporter for a TV talk show, is focused on becoming a “serious” journalist. But when she stumbles into a kilted Highlander with a killer accent, Cassie decides that taking one night off from work and spending it with a sexy Scot couldn’t hurt. . .

Logan Reid has built a career on his charm, hosting a series of off-the-wall hijinks on the Web. But when the Scottish prankster meets the all-American, equal parts intelligent and irresistible Cassie, Logan realizes that one night of fun won’t be enough. Could it be that this career-focused, commitment-phobic couple is finally ready to take a chance at true and lasting love?

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2Kv15j2

5. Sweet Tea & Second Chances: A Second Chance Small Town Romantic Comedy (Lovebird Café Book 1) by Dylann Crush

sweettea

They say true love lasts forever… but what do they know?

There’s a legend surrounding The Lovebird Café… those who meet and fall in love there end up together forever. But up-and-coming chef Cassiopeia Belmont doesn’t have time for small-town lore. She’s got one thing on her mind: getting in and out of Swallow Springs, Missouri before the dust settles. If she can sell the farmhouse her grandparents left her, she’ll have enough cash to invest in her own high-profile restaurant in Dallas and finally put down the roots she so desperately craves.

Contractor Robbie Jordan thought he’d put his childhood sweetheart behind him. But when Cassie shows up, he can’t help but remember what they used to have and how she made him feel.

When Cassie hires Robbie to perform the renovations on the house, memories from the past rise to the surface and muck up their current plans. But is a second chance worth taking if they haven’t learned from their past mistakes?

Snag your copy of Sweet Tea & Second Chances today and relax into Swallow Springs, Missouri, where a cocky rooster rules the roost and all of life’s problems can be solved while sipping on a nice cold glass of sweet tea.

FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2XYhHTr

6. The Orchard Inn (Orchard Inn Romance Series Book 1) by A.M. Kusi

orchard

Ella lives in constant fear. After seven years of concealing her whereabouts from an abusive ex, she gets an opportunity for a fresh start when one of the few men she trusts leaves her a charming inn. When a mysterious, charming guest tempts her to open her heart again, she fears the scars from the past will keep her from anything close to love.

Hardworking and successful, River has always wondered if something’s missing from his life. And when he falls for the gorgeous proprietor of Orchard Inn, he knows the tattooed beauty is exactly what he needs. Moved by her pain, he encourages her to open up about her fears while he promises to stay by her side.

But just as their irresistible passions bloom, Ella’s brutal ex returns to reclaim what was never truly his.

Can Ella and River fight off the past long enough to awaken a forever love?

Buy now for 99 Cents!

Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/2x9dTTu

Bon Chance and Happy Reading!

A.L. Vincent/Jolie St. Amant

Want more beach reads? Check out my Boonie series set on the Louisiana coast!

Run away to the Gulf Coast

A.L. Vincent’s Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/A.L.-Vincent/e/B016X3YYW2

 

New Release from Jolie St. Amant!

Casting My Spell

The Chateau Rouge Series

Excerpt

“Are you ready for this?” Sebastian asked Ivy. Although he wasn’t certain if the question was meant for her or himself. Turning a female was always sensual, the pounding of each other’s hearts. The intimacy of the contact of teeth against flesh.

“Yes.” Her voice was soft and shaky at first, but stronger when she repeated, “Yes.”
He could hear Madame begin her slow chant, could see her through the doorway, Mina’s hand in hers.

“Damnit!” Frustrated, he slammed his fist against the counter. “That should be me in there!”

Ivy placed her hand on his. “I know, my friend. This is such a bad situation for us all. Do you think I want you to do this? She’s my best friend.”

“I will be quick about it,” he said, sharper than he meant to, and Ivy raised an eyebrow.

“Well, not too quick, I hope. Let’s make sure we do this right. I want to come back, you know.”

He smiled then. “I could never do harm to my love’s best friend. Well, not permanent harm, anyway.”

The back room went quiet, and Sebastian knew Selena was, at the moment, drawing the blood, the life, out of his Mina. How he ached to go to her. To whisper words of comfort as her body drifted off, then as the pain came.

He sighed, wanting so much. The agony of not being able to touch her was almost more than he could bear.

Madame entered the room then, “Come now, it is your turn.”

BUY NOW In the Shadows and Sorcery set for only 99 Cents!!!

Click here to buy! https://books2read.com/u/31xpew

SpellPromo (2)

Halloween in New Orleans

14725615_10207772380936109_4982261725266056866_n“Look at all this. Isn’t it delightfully vulgar?” Ivy gestured to the Halloween decorations. Skeletons wrapped in fake cobwebs were adorned in black and orange Carnival beads and top hats. The party never stopped in New Orleans. Not even when you were dead.–“Dream a Little Dream of Me”

I love New Orleans. In fact, I’m not sure the word “love” adequately describes the emotion that I feel for this town. There’s just something about the way the town simply vibrates with life that appeals to my soul. I can spend hours walking through the French Quarter. The sounds of the street musicians, the sights along Bourbon Street, the smells of the awesome food, all awaken my spirit. 🙂

14713569_10207778512529395_3778491770161948992_nSpeaking of spirits, one of my favorite times to visit this amazing town is during Halloween. New Orleans goes all out for this spooky holiday. Bourbon Street decorates with witches, goblins, ghouls, and of course, vampires. The Krewe of Boo is a parade with floats that throw beads (of course), candy, and other treats to people on the streets. I have been lucky enough to attend a couple of times, and it’s always a blast.

It’s no wonder that I would start a paranormal series set in NOLA. The writing possibilities are endless. That Voodoo That You Do, set in a haunted hotel in New Orleans, is the first in the Chateau Rouge series. This collection of novellas is set during Halloween weekend and has many enchanting surprises.

I’m very excited to say that the next novella, “Casting My Spell”, will be included in the Shadows and Sorcery boxed set that will release in May. In this story, we will meet Mina who was returned to the Chateau Rouge for one reason; to win the heart of the man who stole hers over two hundred years ago. Come Hell or high magic. 🙂

lyn forester - bookbub free booksYou can pre-order Shadows and Sorcery today and get “Casting my Spell” and 23 other stories for only 99 Cents! With your pre-order you get over ten bonus stories to sink your teeth into. That, my friends, is a deal you just can’t resist.

To pre-order, click the link below:

Buy Link: http://books2read.com/u/31xpew

 

Want to satisfy that craving for the spirited side of New Orleans before this box set comes out? Check out the first novella in the series, “Dream a Little Dream of Me” and meet the characters of the Chateau Rouge. It’s also only 99 cents or free on Kindle Unlimited.

Dream (2)Josey Jacobsen has survived losing her true love…twice. When Archer Grayson walks into her life a third time, Josey must choose between letting him go or taking one more chance on love.

Amazon Buy Link: https://amzn.to/2DGcbxu

Once and For All

“How hard must I try
To put my dreams aside
And open your eyes so you’ll realize
Once and for all

That the fear, the Fear is worse than the fall…”

-“The Fear is Worse Than the Fall”– Leauxco

Two local bands are featured in Running on Empty when Grace and Gabe take a road trip to Lafayette. Those bands are Destination Sanity and Leauxco. When it came time to plan a release party for ROE, I asked Neil Ray if his band would like to come play for the party. And they did.

All the Boonie books are titled after songs, “Tangled up in You” is a song by Staind. “Running on Empty” is a popular song by Jackson Browne. I had already started the third novel in the series, but had tentatively titled in “Everything Changes”. That’s also by Staind, and I was definitely feeling like two songs by the same artist were a bit overkill.

During the evening, Neil Ray, the lead singer, says, “Alisha, you need to name one of your books after this song. When he started singing, I knew then that “The Fear is Worse Than the  Fall” would be the inspiration for Carly and Joey’s story. It describes perfectly what is keeping the two lovebirds apart. Fear, plain and simple. It also plays into Carly’s constant search for her fairy tale ending. Will Carly get her happily ever after, “once and for all”? Well, we’ll just have to see about that.

Once and For All 

Chapter One

Excerpt

Saturday September 27th
4 days until landfall
Bon Chance, Louisiana
Carly Devereaux rolled over in bed, one eye opening to see the time on the clock on her nightstand.

The red light shone 10:00 a.m.

She groaned and started to get up. Sammie, her fat and ancient weenie dog thumped a heavy tail under the blankets. Probably hoping to get another half hour or day of sleep.
Carly pulled the sheets back, “Come on lazy. We have to get up. We have a party to get ready for.”

Carly managed Snapper’s, the bar and grill that she owned with her brother, Noah, and best friend, Joey. They had opened it a couple of years ago, after their younger brother, Benjamin had been killed in an oilfield accident.

Tonight was a big birthday party for Tessa, one of the bar’s regulars and Carly needed to be there to make sure everything was ready. She had already decorated, but there were a few last minute things to take care of. Jello shots to make. Extra beer to stock. The food, her roommate Joey would make. She was a hot mess in the kitchen. But, Carly would need to make sure there was adequate plates, silverware, etc.

As she thought about food, she smelled bacon cooking. Her stomach growled. Sammie, who was still half under the blankets, flopped around and stood up.

Carly laughed and patted her on the head, “Yeah, that bacon gets you going every time, doesn’t it?”

A hearty ear flop was her answer.

Carly picked the dog up and placed her on the floor. She did a little dance around Carly’s legs as they walked to the door.

The tip tap of the dog’s feet accompanied Carly’s footsteps as she walked through the house the she and Joey had shared since she returned from Biloxi.

She reached the open kitchen that Joey and her brother, Noah, had remodeled recently, and her heart started doing that weird flutter thing it had been doing for the past few months.

Her friend, her best friend, Joey, was at the stove wearing only pajama pants. His hips swayed slightly to the Cajun music playing on the streaming radio station. His hair dark hair was rumpled. When he turned and he flashed that dimpled smile at her, she had to look away to keep herself from throwing herself in his arms.

Instead, she crossed the kitchen and poured herself a cup of coffee.
Sammy, that bitch, trotted over to Joey and placed a paw on his bare foot. She rolled over on her back, kicking her tiny legs up in the air. She was rewarded with a tummy rub and piece of bacon.

“C’mon Sammy, let’s go out,” Carly said as she walked over to the door. She opened the door and the dog pranced out. Carly carried her under one arm and held her coffee in the other hand down the steps of the raised house. She plopped down on the bottom step, and looked out at the gulf while Sammy sniffed around the grass.

Carly couldn’t see the water from where they were, but it was a short walk.

“C’mon Sammy,” she said, and the little dog took off, ready to go on an adventure.
Reaching the beach, Carly plopped down, her coffee mug still in hand. She continued to sip while Sammy along the water’s edge, nose to the sand, looking for something. Carly had long ceased wondering what the dog was on the hunt for.

The heavy clouds were shades of gray and navy blue. It was hard to see where the clouds ended and the water began. White surf churned and splashed against the sand.

A storm was brewing.

Carly frowned and took a sip of her coffee. A cold breeze blew off the water, and she shivered.

She thought of Joey and her reaction to him in the kitchen. The same feelings she’d been fighting for months now.

The ocean wasn’t the only thing in turmoil.

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Tangled up in You

“How long has it been since this storyline began…”

“When did you start writing?”

It’s one of the questions I get asked most when I tell people I’m an author. The real answer, is that I started writing when I was in the ninth grade in Linda Riggs’ class. I’d sit in the back and write my stories after I had finished my English classwork. My first novel? A really, really, bad story I called Summer Love. It was about a girl going to summer camp and finding her first love. I kept that manuscript in a box for I don’t know how long. But after a few moves, it’s history.

I wrote off and on after that. I never finished anything. I’d start one idea, play with it, work on it, and then another idea would hit and I’d abandon that one. One day, I just simply stopped writing altogether.

About ten years ago, I met someone who would become a great friend of mine. I was hanging out one night at a place I used to like to go to. We talked about writing, and he wrote me a poem on a bar napkin. I told him I’d write a poem back, and I did. A really horrible one, I’m sure. Today, I don’t even remember what it was about.

It did spark something in me and I started playing with words again. I found out about this thing called National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and I set out on a journey to write a novel in thirty days. I didn’t make it. But, I did start this wonderful story about this girl named Carly, this guy named Joey, and the Redbird Inn.

I set that story aside, but I never really forgot it.

A couple of years later, I was bartending and a friend of mine brought me a newspaper clipping about a story contest for a writer’s conference. All I had to do was write the opening scenes of a novel. That seemed easy enough. It was only a couple thousand words. So, I did it. I started the story of a woman who was tired of her alcoholic husband and the damage he was doing to not only his life, but hers as well.

I sent it off. Went to the conference. And won third place. I was ecstatic.

And motivated enough to finish the novel. I titled it Crossroads.

I finished this one, but it wasn’t the end for this story. I re-wrote it. Submitted it. Recieved rejection after rejection. I eventually put it away and started the second novel.

In 2014, I decided to give it a try one more time. If nothing happened this time, I was going to quit. I dusted it off, literally, and read through it again. I sent it out to some readers who had some pretty tough words for me. I was going to have to rework it. Again. Determined, I learned everything I could about story structure and mapping. I made a huge poster on my wall and moved the scenes around until it flowed. That poster is still on my office wall.

As I worked on it, I would listen to music. Every time that Aaron Lewis’ “Tangled up in You” came on, I would think that if Emily and Noah had a song, that would be it. When I started submitting the novel again, it not only had been completely redone, it had a new title as well.

I participated in PitMad on Twitter that summer. A publisher I’d never heard of before, Limitless Publishing, liked my Tweet, and I guess you could say that the rest is history. The story that started so many years ago, finally found a home.

And I haven’t quit writing since….

Cheers!

I’m out!

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