Saturday, May 31, 2014

Brenda Novak Auction Ends Today

The 2014 Brenda Novak Online Auction for Diabetes Research is ending today. Most auctions will end later this evening. If you've got bids in on items, be sure to check for updates. If you don't, you might want to swing by to see if you're missing out on some truly "must have" stuff. There are books, collectibles, memorabilia, gift baskets, editor critiques, promotional packages, meet and greet with famous authors, special packages and trips. Don't miss your chance!

You can start by visiting the SFR Brigade sponsored category by clicking the button on the right. Have fun!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Writing Influences by Patricia Green

My all-time favorite SF book is Ringworld by Larry Niven. And although the romance is thin, the plot, characters and settings are fulsome. I don't know what inspired the author, what genius spark of intelligence lit up Niven's brain. I do know he was a mathematician during his college years, and loves to delve into theoretic physics in his books. It's that background that informs his writing, and, I believe it's what allowed him to build the incredible universe he did with his Ringworld series.

When I approach writing SF fiction, I don't have a background in math or physics. I took bonehead classes in physics, chemistry, biology, and math. Consequently, I have to do a lot of research when building my worlds. I try not to dip into territory in which I will surely make errors, but I rely on current technology and then imagine where that tech might take us in one hundred, even two hundred years. Although some of it might be magical-seeming, I think science grinds through at a relatively predictable pace in most cases, a pace we can take some chances on foretelling.

I try to set my SFR only 150 years in the future. That gives me some solid footing on which to work. I use my imagination, and inspiration from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick, "The Matrix" by the Wachowski brothers, Dreampark by Niven and Barnes, and many others. I try to fit elements of these works into my books without stealing from them, and try to enhance any romantic concepts to give my books a passionate heart.

"The Matrix" introduced me to gel immersion. Current physics led me to nanites, and then I thought, what if there was a nanite gel that affected the brain and body? What could it do? Doesn't that remind you of "Fantastic Voyage" by Harry Kleiner?

So my nanite gel immersion was born. The nanites are so small, they can infiltrate the body through pores in the skin and inhalation of the gel. It causes a sleep so deep that dreamers experience a programmed set of circumstances as though they were real. Thus, we're led into the dream romance.

For other books, I built my world around a more dystopian Earth, where there is a nuclear war between Asia and the West. Cold War politics led me to this future. When you're a person for whom bomb drills were the norm as a child, where "duck and cover" was simply part of the school curriculum, it makes an impression on you. Creating a dystopian future from that was natural, as was creating a fantastic bomb shelter underground where close quarters means conflict and romance.

All authors are influenced by something, something so memorable that it makes an indelible imprint on our brains. Hopefully, it leads us to create equally compelling books that influence a new generation of readers. What influenced/s you?


Charlotte & the Pirate: Romantek Book 2 is my latest book. Another Romantek book, Eddie, My Love,  is due out May 30, 2014.

Blurb for Charlotte & the Pirate

Charlotte Darrell desperately needs to buy a Romantek dream vacation in the hope that their rejuvenation process can heal her horrid facial scar and restore her life back to what it was before her accident. But her virtual reality dream isn't all she expected.
Rex Boyd is a counter cyber-terrorism expert, working for Romantek. The company is aware that someone is trying to break into their operations and terrorize paying customers. Rex hopes to protect one of the most vulnerable, the rich and influential Marie Carthage.
Once in the dream, fighting the terrorist who has gotten access to Romantek's system, Rex finds the situation confounded by Charlotte's presence. Is she a paying customer like Marie, or is she part of the terrorist's network, there to do harm to Marie and start a firestorm of lawsuits that would bankrupt Romantek? And how will he ever reconcile his feelings for her with his suspicions?
Charlotte finds herself in love and in danger. The dream has become a nightmare, and there doesn't seem to be a path toward happiness.

Links to Charlotte & the Pirate:

Author Bio:
Patricia Green is a full-time fiction writer specializing in erotic romance. She provides the reader with love stories that emphasize fun characters with quirky personalities. Patricia is the author of more than 20 published novels and novellas.
In her personal life, Patricia is married and the mother of twins. When she’s not being the angel of domestic harmony and a semi-crazed creator of fictional friends, she loves to read, crochet, knit and watch hockey and baseball.

Social Media:
You can reach Patricia Green in the following ways:
Email: pig (at) patriciagreenbooks (dot) com
Twitter: @PatriciaIGreen

Thursday, May 22, 2014

SFRB Recommends #16 The Emotion Thesaurus #writingtools

Today's recommendation comes from Rachel Leigh Smith.

Struggle with how to show, not tell a character’s feelings? Need help creating fresh body language that doesn’t come off as stale or cliché?

The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression is a writer’s best friend, helping to navigate the difficult terrain of showing character emotion. Through an easy-to-use list format, this brainstorming tool explores seventy-five emotions and provides a large selection of body language, internal sensations, actions and thoughts associated with each. - See more at:

If you're a writer, The Emotion Thesaurus is a must-have. Especially if you find yourself using the same few emotional descriptors over and over and over because you can't think of anything else. I've had this book for a couple of years now and it's a lifesaver. It's taken my emotional descriptions from humdrum and expected, to unique and vivid.

I have it in paper, but it's also available on Kindle, Nook, the iBookstore, Kobo, Smashwords, and as a PDF.

Author site: Writers Helping Writers

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Deep POV by Evelyn Berry

Evelyn Berry is a life-long lover of science fiction romance and appreciates a good discussion on writing craft. Thus, a discussion on POV was born. For more helpful tips or funny life lessons, find her on Twitter: @eviebromance or Facebook.

What is Deep Point of View (POV)? Deep POV has been described as close third person. Orson Scott Card[i] describes deep POV as, “intense ‘hot’ narration; no other narrative strategy keeps the reader so closely involved with the character and the story.” I like Gerke’s[ii] description of POV as a reader sitting in a submarine with no windows. The world outside the submarine is your story. The only way the reader can experience that world is by looking through a periscope. If we take this analogy further, writers can zoom in and zoom out of a scene allowing the reader to focus in on the most important person/object.

Card goes on to mention that no one level of POV penetration will be right for the entire story. This makes sense to me – you can’t zoom in to any one person or thing for too long. Nelson calls this ‘narrative distance’[iii]. YOU, as the author, need to decide when to zoom in and when to zoom out. Here are a few tips to get you to zoom in.

1)      Describe things/people the way the POV character would describe them. Our current experiences are colored by a myriad of previous experiences and how we’ve been socialized. E.g., Darth Vader’s experience losing his mother made him vulnerable (and unstable) to the idea that he would lose Padme in childbirth.
2)      Remove filter words, such as: feel/felt, know/knew, wondered, realized, speculated, saw, wished…etc. When these filter words are coupled with pronouns (see #3), it creates narrative distance. Readers have zoomed out so fast they got whiplash.
3)      Review use of personal pronouns – pronouns remind the reader that they are not the hero/heroine and pulls them out of the story.
a.       Use personal pronouns during action sentences. E.g., “She slung her duffel bag over her shoulder.”
b.      Try not to use personal pronouns during perception sentences. If your character likes/dislikes something/someone, pronouns can filter this perception. E.g., “She thought Dr. Brown was wasting his time questioning Sephorum.”  By getting rid of ‘She thought’, it removes the filter word and pronoun.
c.       Describe the things how the POV character would describe them. Use the character’s five senses – sounds, smells, touch, taste, and sight.
4)      It bears repeating: Show, don’t tell. - Instead of saying, “She was scared.” Describe the physical, internal sensations, and mental reactions. I would recommend “The Emotional Thesaurus: A writer’s guide to character expression[iv].”  Instead of “She was scared.” You could write, “She shook uncontrollably.” Or “She gripped the handle until her nails bit into her palms.” *ouch* That description made me wince – Good! That means the reader is, too.
5)      Evidential and Modal Verbs – what are these? They’re words like: Can, could, might, shall, should, will, etc. These words help the hero/heroine describe their internal judgment as they evaluate a situation and express their opinion.
a.       The doctor could yell until her voice gave out, Daphne wasn’t staying in the hospital one more hour.

When I revise my manuscripts, I look for places where I could get deeper POV.

Does this mean that every character needs deep POV? No. And not all scenes should be deep POV. I have to remind myself to zoom in and zoom out with supreme judgment.

[i] The Elements of Fiction Writing Characters and Viewpoint
[ii] The First 50 pages by Jeff Gerke
[iii] Rivet Your Readers with Deep Point of View by Jill Elizabeth Nelson
[iv] The Emotional Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Are you ready to go "In the Black"?

Monday marked the release of "In the Black" , the first book in my new science fiction romance series "Tales from the Edge" - a series I like to describe as "Firefly" meets "Best Little Whorehouse"...

But let's start with the short and sweet blurb...

When Sam Keller left the military, she ran to the far end of the galaxy. Now she captains the Bonnie Belle, a spaceship full of courtesans who bring a little pleasure to hard-up men on mining colonies. When one of her girls turns up dead, it's Sam's job to find out who killed her, fast.

Marshal Daniel LeClair is as tough as steel and quick on the draw. But when his vacation gets replaced by an assignment to help find the killer, he can't help angling for a little action with the saucy, hard-charging Sam. She's got brains, attitude and a body he wouldn't mind investigating.

Sam, six months lonely, might just indulge him. But the Guild that owns the Belle wants the case closed yesterday. With pressure coming from all quadrants, Sam and her marshal clash over false leads and who's on top. But when the killer threatens the Belle again, romance will have to wait. It's a captain's job to save her crew, no matter the cost.

But their first meeting isn't a walk in the park. Let me show you how Captain Samantha Keller and Marshal Daniel LeClair discover each other...


“You wanna go?” Sam whispered. “You wanna go?” Her pulse was racing. She felt a bead of sweat run down her back, pooling at the base of her spine.

This wasn't some kid fresh off the boat. This was an old-timer with impressive biceps straining the sleeves of his dirty jumpsuit. That was okay. She had energy
to spare. And it’d been a while since she’d gotten physical with anyone.

It wasn't sex, but it’d do for the moment.

“You feeling lucky?” she said, waiting for him to make the first move. She motioned him forward.

Something shot by her left ear.

She froze.

The miner watched her with widening eyes, rooted in place. A trickle of drool began rolling out of the left side of his mouth. His eyes rolled up showing only the whites.

He passed out. His arms rose in front of him, giving him a movie monster look. All he needed was to start roaring and goose-stepping forward.

Sam spotted the tiny dart in his chest, the small, dark green tufted needle almost invisible against the dirty oil-stained shirt.

“You seem to have an interesting effect on men.”

The low voice behind her brought Sam back around, automatically assuming a combat stance with her hands up, fingers balled into fists.

He stood there, two fingers on his right hand up to his forehead in a mocking salute. The other hand held the standard law-enforcement weapon of choice, the P-112 pistol. Her mind went through the identification process. Official issue for the military or the Marshal Service, not something handed out to station security.

The lightweight weapon fired either tranqs or bullets, and she’d just seen the tranq side of it.

“He’ll be awake in an hour or so. United Nations Service Marshal Daniel LeClair at your service, ma’am.”

The leather jacket, dotted with UNS patches from various bases and a set of identification pips on the lapels, was snug on his broad shoulders, and tight jeans hung low on his hips. A white T-shirt finished off the informal uniform, matching his short white hair.

He smiled at her, a sheepish twist to his lips. The only thing missing to make the cowboy image complete would be a hat perched at a rakish angle on his head.

“Family trait. My father had a full head of white hair by the time he hit twenty,” he replied to the unasked question. “You must be Sam Keller.”

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?” she snapped back.

He holstered his weapon and stepped toward her, his smile dissolving into a confused grin. “Helping.”

Sam punched the miner in the ribs, not hard enough to break them but enough to leave a reminder for when he woke up. “This is my ship and those people are under my protection. I don’t need your help to take out the trash. I can deal with these idiots.”

LeClair put up his hands and stopped. “Whoa there. I just figured—”

“You figured you’d save a damsel in distress.” Sam walked up to him and jabbed her index finger into his chest. “First lesson of working with me is that I’m as tough as you are, Marshal.” She eyed him. “Probably tougher. So don’t think I can’t handle myself or get the job done.”

LeClair grinned. “I think I’d like to see you handling yourself.”

The angry words fell away from Sam’s mind, leaving a black hole. She stared at the lawman, uncertain what she’d just heard.

He didn't look away, not giving an inch.

Two could play that game. Not bothering to be subtle, she mentally undressed him, exposing rock-hard abs and a body built for action. All-night action like one of the heroes in those detective novels she’d been devouring.

God, I've lost it. I’m getting hot for a damned cop.

Romantic Times Magazine gave "In the Black" four out of five stars and said it was "a fast-paced tale of murder & mystery in outer space"! Check out their review here!

If you're interested in seeing more of Captain Keller and Marshal LeClair pick up "In the Black" here at AmazonB&N or Carina Press!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Meet the #Author Monday - KG Stutts

Please tell us a bit about yourself: My name is KG Stutts. I’m happily married, living in North Carolina. A lover of Star Wars, Disney, Stargate SG-1 and Atlantis, Star Trek, and video games. I wear my geek flag proudly.
Tell us about Mirror Image: It’s book one in a sci-fi romance story. Maddie is a brilliant woman who finds out she’s a clone, created by a secret government agency the Intergalactic Security Commission. Maddie must work with her counterpart, Mack, to protect Earth and each other when an enemy from within threatens everything.
What inspired you to write this particular story?: I kept having dreams for about a month were I was Maddie and I got to experience this crazy upside down world. I became obsessed with it and couldn’t get it out of my head so I started writing.
Please share a favourite snippet from your book: My favorite part is a huge spoiler so I can’t go into it. One of my favorite scenes which I can share is in chapter three. Several of the main characters are in a bar and they start opening up to one another. Three of them are brothers and this scene is just very telling about who these guys really are. 
"I'm curious about something,” Logan said, breaking the quiet. “You work with our counterparts, correct?"
"I do. They work in a different department than I do, but we work on the same floor," Maddie said.
"How different are we from them?" Logan asked.
"From my experiences, not that different. The eyes give you away though," Maddie told him.
"What do you mean?" John asked.
"I can look in your eyes and see the pain you mask. Seth is better at it than you are, but I can still see it. You've lived a rough life," Maddie told him.
Almost instantly, the three of them broke their gaze.
"It's okay. I can't imagine that this life is an easy one," Maddie said, quickly backtracking.
"It's not," Logan simply said.
"Wow, you got them pegged," Jackson said with a laugh.
"You too, jerkface. You fought in most of the same battles as we have," Seth said, tossing a few peanuts at Jackson.
"You certainly are different than I expected you to be," John said as he put out his cigarette. Logan nodded in agreement.
"And how did you expect me to be?" Maddie asked.
"Honestly? Docile. Meek," John responded.
"I guess I'm supposed to be." Maddie frowned.
"Don't say that. Don't sound like you are apologizing," John said.
Maddie tossed back another shot. "I appreciate that."
"No, I'm serious. Don't apologize for who you are, Maddie. You are a beautiful person, inside and out. You are warm and funny. Plus, you can shoot pool and alcohol like no girl I've ever known," John told her.
"Maybe you've been hanging out with the wrong kind of girls." Maddie smiled at him.
"You may be onto something there." John grinned.

Which comes first for you – a character's looks, personality or name?: Personality always comes first. Some names come with the personality. Looks always come last.
Any tips for aspiring authors?: Keep writing. Don’t be discouraged by rejection. Do what you love and the rest will follow.

Questions for fun:
If you had the power of time travel, is there anything you would go back and change? Why/why not?: My mom died when I was 18 and she and I had gotten into a big fight hours before…if I could go back in time, I would’ve apologized, hugged her one last time, and told her I loved her.
What super-power would you choose?: The ability to fly.
If you could have three wishes, what would they be?: For Mirror Image to make it to the top 100 list on Amazon, to be able to visit Tokyo Disney, and to go to a Green Bay Packer game live with my friends
Coffee, tea or wine?: I recently cut out caffeine so I would have to say a sweet blush wine
What is your favourite book? (aside from one of your own!): It’s really hard to pin down a favorite book. One of my most recent favorites is Birth of an Empire: the Beginning (Xarrok series) by Catrina Taylor
Favourite genre and why?: Sci-fi and mystery. I grew up on Agatha Christie and Star Wars comics
Favourite colour?: Purple
Upcoming news and plans for the future?: Have a romance story coming out in June. The second in the Mirror Series will have a release date shortly. Currently writing book three in the Mirrors series and book one on a new sci-fi romance series.

Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us! Thank you for having me!

Smashwords buy link:
Amazon buy link:

Twitter: KGStutts

Thursday, May 8, 2014

SFRB Recommends #15: Dragonfly by Erica Hayes #scifi #scifiromance #sfr

Dragonfly- by Erica Hayes

This week's recommendation comes from Rachel Leigh Smith:

Carrie Thatcher is a tough Imperial counter-terrorism agent. Her mission: pose as a sexy cyber-thief to entrap the notorious rebel Dragonfly, who’s planning a heist on the space station Casa de Esperanza – an orbital casino on the fringe of Imperial space.

And this assignment’s personal: Dragonfly murdered her closest friend, and she’s in no mood to show him mercy. Even getting stuck with the partner from hell—Malachite, her sociopathic ex-lover and the Empire’s most dangerous agent—can’t dampen her relish for the kill.

With Carrie’s expert weapons skills and penchant for cracking codes, insinuating herself into Dragonfly’s confidence should be easy. But is he the ruthless killer she was led to believe? Or has her precious Empire deceived her? With Malachite watching her every move, the slightest flinch in loyalty means death.

Carrie is soon racing to uncover an audacious treachery that will shock the Empire to its core … if she can stay alive for long enough to expose it.

I don't usually read first person books, and this one managed to not only catch my attention but KEEP it. The world Erica built is based on Russia being the dominant power. I love all things Russian, so this probably had a lot to do with why I enjoyed it so much.

I did go through my usual missing his point of view, but I'm weird like that. A very enjoyable read with unique worldbuilding and an interesting heroine.

Author site: Erica Hayes - Urban Fantasy Author

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

SFR Brigade Library Updates

All Hands On Deck!

You know the drill, Brigaders. We want to get the SFR Brigade Library spit shined and polished before the holiday shopping season descends upon us. That means we need your latest titles to decorate with.

Send Liana an email with the following information:

Genre: Action/Adventure, Anthology, Comedy, Cyberpunk/Speculative, Military, Near Future, Paranormal, Simply Romance, Space Opera, or Not Romance
Heat Rating: Sweet (fade to black), Hot (sex on screen), Erotic
Author Name: 
Buy Link: a link to your website or some other page featuring the book
Release Date: For new books or any books coming out between now and September 1, 2014

liana . brooks1 at gmail dot com

If you send an email and don't get a response you can track Liana down on Twitter. Look for @LianaBrooks and tell her to check her spam folder.


Several authors have noted that their books have won certain awards when they send them to the library. Would we like to note this in the library, make a separate page for award winning SFR books, or avoid mentioning awards all together? 

How should we address award winning books? free polls 

Tales from the SFR Brigade - a Night Owl Top Pick! #scifi #romance

Today Tales from the SFR Brigade - our free digital anthology of eight science fiction romance stories - became a Top Pick at Night Owl Romance, scoring a stellar 4.5 stars! Here's what their reviewer had to say:

"I really enjoyed this compilation. None of them disappointed and most were downright stunning."

Want to know why else they rated it? Read the rest of the review HERE. And you could be the lucky owner of a rare print edition of the anthology as part of the Brenda Novak Online Auction HERE. This item will never be available for general sale anywhere. But don't forget you can still get the digital version free at most online retailers.

Available for FREE from...
 Amazon US | Amazon UK | ARe
 SmashwordsB&N | Kobo

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


(Copyright by WyoJones. All rights reserved. Used with permission.)
Why does anyone cross the galaxy? Why to get to the other side.
Of course, you know I went looking for chicken-crossing-the-road jokes and was actually surprised there were so many. Here’s some, modified for our galactic theme:

Q. Why did the chicken cross only halfway across the galaxy: A: She wanted to lay it on the warp line…
Q. Why did the monkey cross the galaxy? A: Because the chicken got refried…
Robert Frost: to take the wormhole less traveled…
Captain Kirk: To boldly go where no chicken has gone before…
Sir Isaac Newton: Chickens at rest tend to stay at rest. Chickens in the wormhole tend to cross the galaxy…
Albert Einstein: Whether the chicken crossed the galaxy or the galaxy crossed the chicken depends on your frame of reference…
Darth Vadar: because it wanted to go to the dark side…

I know, pretty lame. The thing is, chicken jokes and space travel have a lot in common.
They are about getting to the other side. Or the other planet. Or from point A to point B. And to accomplish it in a time frame that is a) reasonable; and b) believable.
The first truth of writing (and reading) about fictional space travel is that it is (mostly) made up. While this seems obvious, since we haven’t managed to get a human being further than the moon, there are those who want only “reality” in their fiction. (Personally, I’d like a little more fiction in my reality. I think it's past time we got transporters...)
From the time science fiction first appeared, authors have been making up ways for their characters to move through space and time. Some feel more “real” than others, but they all require us to suspend disbelief in order to take the ride with the story.
Some of my personal favorite types of fictional space travel are:

Warp Drives and wormholes (Star Trek)
Hyperdrives (Star Wars)
Infinite Improbability Drive (The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy)
FTL - (Battlestar Galactica)
Tardis (Dr. Who)
Starburst (Farscape)
Stargates (Stargate SG-1, etc)
Jump Gates/Jump Space (Lost Fleet, Dock Five)

In my own Project Enterprise novels, I use a mix of types, though I tend to focus more on the story than the science of getting around. I start from the point of: it just IS. The technology is there and now we’re off on an adventure, so that the hosing of my characters can commence.
When I went to mix some steampunk into my science fiction romance (Tangled in Time: Project Enterprise 3), I made the mistake of asking the scientist hubs if a concept I wanted to use sounded “real.” We ended up in this painful causality loop:

Hubs: But it’s not real.
Me: It’s fiction. Does it SOUND real?
Hubs: But it’s NOT real.
Me: It’s FICTION. I’m making it up.
Hubs: But it’s not real.
Me: You want my science FICTION to be real?
Hubs: Of course.

I left him with a puzzled expression, turning instead to a friend who is a physicist at NASA. I asked her the same question and her response was, “It’s fiction. It sounds fun. Go for it.”
I suspect your enjoyment of any science fiction romance novel will be predicated on how real the science is, and how real you like your fictional science.
In the end, the means aren’t as important as the fact that the chicken (or the characters) do get to the other side—or where they need to go. 
Why (and how) does your chicken cross the galaxy? And while you're figuring that out, don't forget to hop over and check out the category that the SFR Brigade is sponsoring for the Brenda Novak Online Auction. For the month of May you can bid on some cool SFR related goodies, including signed, print editions of my Project Enterpise series and some yummy soaps.

Dream Realm Award winner 

When Sara Donovan joins Project Enterprise she finds out that what doesn’t kill her makes her stronger…

"From the beginning, action is non-stop and filled with suspense. Sara is more than the quintessential kick-butt heroine. She is the perfect warrior, a woman confident in her abilities in the air and on the ground, and so loyal to her country that she is willing to make personal sacrifices to ensure its safety…This sci-fi adds a nice dose of romance and a touch of humor, placing it at the top of the list for a danged good read." Midwest Book Review


Pauline Baird Jones had a tough time with reality from the get-go. After “schooling” from four, yes FOUR brothers, she knew that some people needed love and others needed shooting. Pauline figured she could do both. Romantic suspense was the logical starting point, but there were more worlds to explore, more rules to break and minds to bend. She grabbed her pocket watch and time travel device and dove through the wormhole into the world of science fiction and even some Steampunk.
Now she wanders among the genres, trying a little of this and a lot of that, rampaging through her characters' lives like Godzilla because she does love her peril (when it's not happening to her). Never fear, she gives her characters happy endings. Well, the good characters. The bad ones get justice. 
Pauline released her 13th novel, Relatively Risky, in 2013. She's not superstitious about it, well, maybe a little. But the whole loving/killing thing that needs to be done? Doing it fictionally is just better for everyone. And for Pauline, who hates the thought of getting strip searched and jailed.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Meet the #Author Monday - Patricia Green

Please tell us a bit about yourself: First of all, thank you for making this interview possible!

I’ve been writing professionally for a very long time, first as a technical writer and then full time as a fiction writer. My first book was published in 1993, but I didn’t go full time until 2000, when my daughters were old enough to be on their own. Since then, I’ve written over twenty books, all romances of one sort or another. Six have been SFR, with the two most recent, The Winner: Romantek Book 1, Charlotte & the Pirate: Romantek Book 2, and an upcoming one, Eddie, My Love: Romantek Book 3.

Tell us about the Romantek series: First of all, although they all have the same theme, the books stand alone. You don’t have to remember the tech from one book to another, as the pertinent parts are explained in each novella. The Romantek universe is set in CE 2150, where a company has a patent pending process to steer dreams into the user’s fantasy. Most are historical, and so the dream takes on a kind of time travel aspect. It is not foolproof, and occasionally things go wrong. It’s always an adventure for the dreamers, however, and especially when they meet their love interest. That often gums up the works. Each story has a happily ever after ending in the twenty-second century.

What inspired you to write this particular story?: I love SFR! My very first book ever was SFR, and I can’t get enough of it. Once I had a lightbulb moment for the Romantek concept, I fell in love with the idea and knew I could do a lot with it over time. I do not see an ending for the series at present, as each one is new and fresh with new heroes and heroines.

Please share a favourite snippet from your book: This snippet comes from Charlotte & the Pirate.

Thrilled to have her arms freed, Charlotte rubbed her bruises while she glared at the pirate who stood way, way up there as she knelt at his feet. She tried to scramble up, but Tinker pushed her back down with a growl.

"Damn it…Ouch!" A pinprick between Charlotte's brows confused her. She tried again to stand. "Damn it…" Another pinprick. Finally, she got the idea. Romantek imposed accuracy on the language used in a RAVE. "Scum!" No pinprick. So, she had to speak in their old English. "Unhand me. I will not be your captive!"

"But you are," he said, his lips turning up at the corners as though he was amused. "You are aboard my vessel, surrounded by men loyal to me, and soon, the ship you sailed on will be at the bottom of the sea. You are mine and I will do what I want with you."

Which comes first for you – a character's looks, personality or name?: The name comes first for me.

Any tips for aspiring authors?: Write more books! It’s too easy to get caught up in the social media whirlwind and neglect your primary purpose which is to provide more books to readers. There is a huge snowball effect associated with having a long back list of books. When a reader reads and enjoys one, she’ll often go back and buy several more.

Questions for fun:

If you had the power of time travel, is there anything you would go back and change? Why/why not?: I would tell myself never to date Bob in tenth grade. Gads, what a fiasco that was.

What super-power would you choose?: The power to tell when people were lying.

If you could have three wishes, what would they be?:

(1) Limitless money. (I plebian.)
(2) To look as I did when I was 25 and remain that way.
(3) To give my daughters the intelligence they need to be successful in the world. (They both have learning disabilities.)

Coffee, tea or wine?: Coffee.

What is your favourite book? (aside from one of your own!): Ringworld by Larry Niven

Favourite genre and why?: SF Romance with a hard techno bent. I love it because it fires my imagination in new ways and introduces me to technical concepts I would never have explored otherwise.

Favourite colour?: Orange.

Upcoming news and plans for the future?: The third Romantek book will come out in May, and then I have an erotic historical spanking romance due out in June, and in July a contemporary erotic romance will be published. I had a backlog from the first quarter of the year, so everything is coming out on top of each other.

Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us!

Here’s a link to my Amazon Author Page, where all my currently available books can be found in a nice, tidy list:

Here are links to the two Romantek books currently available:

The Winner: Romantek Book 1:

Charlotte & the Pirate: Romantek Book 2:

Here’s the blurb for Charlotte & the Pirate:

Charlotte Darrell is ugly, scarred and damaged both inside and out. Her only hope is to buy a Romantek dream vacation and hope that their rejuvenation process can heal her horrid blemish and restore her life back to what it was before her accident. But her virtual reality dream isn't all she expected.

Rex Boyd is a counter cyber-terrorism expert, working for Romantek. The company is aware that someone is trying to break into their operations and terrorize paying customers. Rex hopes to protect one of the most vulnerable, the rich and influential Marie Carthage.

Once in the dream, fighting the terrorist who has gotten access to Romantek's system, Rex finds the situation confounded by Charlotte's presence. Is she a paying customer like Marie, or is she part of the terrorist's network, there to do harm to Marie and start a firestorm of lawsuits that would bankrupt Romantek? And how will he ever reconcile his feelings for her with his suspicions?

Charlotte finds herself in love and in danger. The dream has become a nightmare, and there doesn't seem to be a path toward happiness.

SFR Brigade Bases of Operation