Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Finding Your Voice with Robin Rice + Emily McDowell - LESSON 3

Feel free to comment or critique, and if you've found me through the course, be sure to say hi and link me back to your blog! <3 

LESSON 3:

Today Robin spoke of wisdom and digging deeper into ourselves, past the cliches and past the cultural wisdom we've acquired, and by the end of the lesson, all I could think was, "What if I have no depth? What if all I am is surface?' So, the homework reflects that. Sadly. Oh well. There's always tomorrow. 


Photo Credit Jeff Stroud





1. Photo + Haiku and/or Tweet - Write a piece of haiku that brings wisdom to this photo using 5-7-5 syllable haiku or craft your own wise tweet. 

(My attempt at Haiku became a poem of sorts, so...)























Fenced in.
Trapped.
Within her mind, she struggles.
Wanting.
Needing.
Striving.
But what if this is it?
What if this is all there is?
She is bones
And skin
And parts of a whole
Living
Breathing
Dying
Mom
Wife
Imposter
What if this is all she is?

Monday, June 10, 2019

Finding Your Voice with Robin Rice + Emily McDowell - LESSON 2

Feel free to comment or critique, and if you've found me through the course, be sure to say hi and link me back to your blog! <3 

LESSON 2: 

Photo Credit Jim Chapman
Photo + Story Start With 10 Minutes Timed Writing -
"Oh little birdie, I understand. I was once in the hand of someone much bigger than me, and..." 






"Oh little birdie, I understand. I was once in the hand of someone much bigger than me, and..." 
At first he was tender, cradling me in my time of need, comforting me, making me believe again.
Oh, I believed. I believed he was gentle and kind, beautiful and wise. I believed in the future he promised, the healing he said would come. I believed in the glue he offered, putting me back together piece by piece.
He was everything I thought I wanted, needed, but that was all part of the ruse, wasn’t it? To gain my trust, to fool me wholly into believing him.
Believing IN him.
When his fist first tightened—just a fraction—I didn’t notice. How could I, so warm and safe as I was within his loving grasp? When he began to cherish me too much, to hold onto me too tightly, I didn’t understand, didn’t see the forest for the trees. He was mine and I was his and I was safe there in his hands, so much bigger than mine, so much stronger.
Slowly at first, they closed in on me, those hands.
Just a little pressure here and a little tightening there.
So subtle at first that I didn’t notice the signs, didn’t notice the warnings. As he tightened his fist around my soul, I allowed him that power. He loved me, cherished me, wanted to protect me inside that big strong hand.
By the time I realized my savior had become my captor, it was too late. I was a shell of who I’d been before.
Before.
Before him. Before the tragedy that brought him into my life, drawn to me like a moth to a flame, only I was the moth, and he was the flame calling me toward him, closer, closer…
Until there was no longer me, there was just fire and heat and pain, molding me, burning me, hurting me until I could take it no longer. Until I could stand the flames no more. And I will never be the same. I will never be that broken bird he once cradled in his hand. I will never be weak, able to be so easily caught. I will never be the prey again. Because as I waited there in that fire, waited in that unbearable heat, I was changing, Slowly, almost as imperceptibly as that first tightening of his hands. And as he held me to the flame, breaking me down and making me what he wanted, I did not succumb to the fire.
I became the fire.
And I burned his hand.
And he released me. 

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Finding Your Voice with Robin Rice + Emily McDowell - LESSON 1


I started a new course with Robin Rice and Emily McDowell, and, though I was absolutely not going to share my work publicly (outside of the course), I decided that maybe I should. Maybe I should be raw and vulnerable with all of you. Publicly. 

So, here I am. 

(Robin Rice's Training Your Inner Warrior course changed me in numerous ways, and I can't even begin to describe what a blessing it was to find her. That course is FREE right now, and I HIGHLY recommend it! If you're interested, you can find Training Your Inner Warrior on Robin's website.) 

Anyway, back to the task at hand! Finding Your Voice is a two-month course, with lessons every other day. Each day we will be given an image and writing prompt, as well as other options (writing haiku, quote+paragraph combo, etc), but as a writer who used to love participating in flash fiction prompts as often as possible, I have a feeling most days I will be drawn to the ten minutes of free writing prompt. I am going to share the results of said free writing here. 

Feel free to comment or critique, and if you've found me through the course, be sure to say hi and link me back to your blog! <3 

LESSON 1:

Photo Credit Eve Hannah

Photo + Story Start With 10 Minutes Timed Writing -
"I never said I wouldn't jump," she whispered aloud to herself. "So I can't be called a liar. Then again, if I do jump..."










"I never said I wouldn't jump," she whispered aloud to herself. "So I can't be called a liar. Then again, if I do jump..."
What will I be called?
Selfish.
Brave.
Courageous.
Who will come to my defense? Who will chastise me? Who will understand the reason for the leap? When I weigh the pros and cons, examine my options, my reasons, my fears, my dreams… which of these will win?
Jumping is not the easiest option. Jumping is not the act of a fearful woman, the act of someone who has given up. Jumping is not the end.
Jumping is the beginning. Of what exactly, I don’t know. Something strong, something that burns within me. Desire. Hope. A dream yet to meet fruition. A fire burns inside, pushing me further toward the edge, nudging me with gentle reminders, little bits of guidance from some greater force.
A whisper. You can do this.
You are brave.
You are courageous.
You are exactly the strong woman you wish to be.
She is you and you are her and
You. Are. Already. There.
Just jump.
Take the leap.
Do the thing.
See, this jump isn’t the end of anything, but a beautiful, intense, terrifying start. This is the next chapter, the turning of the page, the gift you’ve been waiting for, asking for, begging for.
This leap into the unknown is what it looks like when the stars align, the sun and the moon join together in complete congruity.
This is your moment.
Jump.

Friday, April 19, 2019

DESTROY ME, Her Best Friend's Father #2 by Ayden K. Morgen IS LIVE!!!!!!!!



Destroy Me
Her Best Friend's Father #2
by Ayden K. Morgen
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Two weeks.
No strings attached.
No messy emotions.

Those were the terms Mila Lawson offered Roman Gregory when they found themselves living together in Santa Cruz. Now that the ATF agent has his daughter's twenty-two year old best friend in his bed every night, he's finding it more and more difficult to deny what he's felt for her since the day they met.

With a drug cartel threatening to go to war and his daughter becoming increasingly suspicious, the last thing Roman should be thinking about is keeping Mila by his side. He's never wanted much, but he wants her…and he's willing to break more than a few of his own rules to convince the feisty little blonde to put her heart in his hands.

For Mila, falling for Roman might just be the most terrifying thing she's ever done. Trusting him with her body is one thing, but with her past still hanging over her, she knows all too well that the scary-hot man who drives her wild has the power to destroy her.

As their time in Santa Cruz draws to a close and the world beyond their little stretch of beach closes in on them, Roman and Mila will be forced to confront the truth about their relationship and make decisions neither could have imagined.

But who ever said falling in love would be easy?
Destroy Me is the second of three steamy novellas featuring Mila and Roman.

**Only 99 cents!!**


Devour Me
Her Best Friend's Father #1

Don't get caught.

Never fall in love.
And steer clear of his daughter's friends.



The rules were easy enough for Roman Gregory...until Mila Lawson set out to break every single one of them.

When the twenty-two year old lands on the ATF agent's doorstep after a nasty breakup, he knows all too well that she's off-limits. At thirty-eight, he's almost twice her age, she's hurting, and the blonde bombshell is his daughter's best friend.

Mila knows all about wanting what she can't have. For four years, she's lusted after Talia McPherson's scary hot, terminally single father from afar. After walking away from her cheating ex and what she thought was her happily-ever-after, the last thing on her mind is jumping into a new relationship.

Until she find herself living with Roman in Santa Cruz...

Now all she can think about is making all those dirty fantasies come to life. With nothing left to lose, she makes him an offer he can't refuse: Two weeks of no-holds-barred sex. No strings. No commitments. No messy emotions.

Roman has no business agreeing to her insane proposition. He can't have her. He shouldn't even want her. But he's going to take her anyway… and he has no intentions of stopping until she's his completely.
If there's one thing Roman knows for a fact, it's that he doesn't lose. Ever.

Devour Me is the first of three steamy novellas featuring Mila and Roman.



**Only 99 cents!!**


Ayden is the Amazon Bestselling author of the Ragnarök Prophesies series. She lives in the heart of Arkansas with her childhood sweetheart/husband of fourteen years, and their furry minions. When not writing, she spends her time hiking, reading, volunteering, causing mischief, and building a Spork army.

Ayden graduated summa cum laude with her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and Forensic Psychology in 2009 before going on to complete her graduate degree in CJ and Law. She currently puts her education to use in the CJ and Social Services field.




Follow the tour HERE for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!






Tuesday, March 19, 2019

BEGGING FOR MERCY by Tamara Mataya is LIVE!




BEGGING FOR MERCY 
A Full Throttle Romance
by Tamara Mataya


More interested in lug nuts than Louboutins, mechanic Andy Perris was on a motorbike before she could walk. When her overprotective father decides to hand the garage to her older brother, Andy must prove she’s tough enough to take over. The only thing threatening her victory? Matthew Mercy. Racing rival. Scorching hot distraction.

Matthew only came back to Miami to bail out his little bro, who borrowed money from the wrong people. Matt needs the quick wins of the illegal street races to pay off those debts. Andy gets under Matt’s skin, racing hard and fighting dirty, proving she’s dangerous competition.

Soon the young racers are revving each other up on and off their bikes. The rumbling of the engines is nothing compared to the way Matt makes her body purr between his sheets. Andy doesn’t calm his need for speed. She propels him and he craves more. 
They’re in a race toward each other—or catastrophe. Maybe both.


Add on Goodreads
Buy on Amazon






My FIVE STAR review: 

Well, it happened. Some hot new guy has replaced Darko (from MAKE ME) and Draven (from MOONDREAMER: The Sowing) as my favorite leading man, and his name is MATTHEW MERCY. 

Tamara has NAILED IT with BEGGING FOR MERCY, and I thoroughly enjoyed the chemistry between Andy and Matt. But this isn't just a book about a sexy love interest or blazing hot sex scenes--there's a pretty intense story line that carries you along on a wild ride from beginning to end. Add to that Tamara's wicked sense of humor and her ability to write a badass female lead, and BEGGING FOR MERCY is absolute perfection. 

If you're looking for a wild ride with a strong female lead and a smoking hot love interest, then BEGGING FOR MERCY will leave you begging for more. 


As Uncle Jesse would say, "HAVE MERCY." And then have him again and again. ;-)




Be sure you follow @JessalynJameson on INSTAGRAM so you can enter to win a giveaway for an e-book of BEGGING FOR MERCY! 

Friday, March 15, 2019

DEVOUR ME by Ayden K. Morgen is LIVE!!!!!!!!!!



Her Best Friend's Father #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 15, 2019

Don't get caught.
Never fall in love.
And steer clear of his daughter's friends.

The rules were easy enough for Roman Gregory...until Mila Lawson set out to break every single one of them.

When the twenty-two year old lands on the ATF agent's doorstep after a nasty breakup, he knows all too well that she's off-limits. At thirty-eight, he's almost twice her age, she's hurting, and the blonde bombshell is his daughter's best friend.

Mila knows all about wanting what she can't have. For four years, she's lusted after Talia McPherson's scary hot, terminally single father from afar. After walking away from her cheating ex and what she thought was her happily-ever-after, the last thing on her mind is jumping into a new relationship.

Until she find herself living with Roman in Santa Cruz...

Now all she can think about is making all those dirty fantasies come to life. With nothing left to lose, she makes him an offer he can't refuse: Two weeks of no-holds-barred sex. No strings. No commitments. No messy emotions.

Roman has no business agreeing to her insane proposition. He can't have her. He shouldn't even want her. But he's going to take her anyway… and he has no intentions of stopping until she's his completely.

If there's one thing Roman knows for a fact, it's that he doesn't lose. Ever.
Devour Me is the first of three steamy novellas featuring Mila and Roman.






"So I'm sorry about last night," I say, holding his gaze, refusing to fidget under the weight of it. My hand trembles, so I quickly set my coffee cup on the counter and cross my arms. "I never drink that much. I, um, I'm sorry I passed out and you had to take care of me."

He frowns at me, something shifting through his gaze so quickly, I can't make it out. He looks…I'm not sure. Like I've thrown him off-balance again, like he suddenly isn't sure what to expect from me. That little flash of uncertainty gives me the courage I need to finish what I have to say.

"I should probably also apologize for going into your room yesterday. It wasn't fair of me to invade your privacy like that. You had your door closed for a reason, and I should have respected that."

He stares at me, but doesn't say anything. He does that a lot, just watches me. Ever since I first met him, he's watched me like he can't look away. He looks at me like he knows me inside and out, and still hasn't decided what to do about me. It's unnerving and hot at the same damn time, and I have no clue what it means.

"You said you should apologize," he finally says.

"Hmm?"

"You said you should apologize." He tips his coffee cup up to his lips and takes a sip, watching me over the rim. Those blue eyes rove across my face, not missing anything. "You didn't say you are sorry."

"Oh." I wander toward the fridge, grimacing when my foot throbs.

"Is your foot still bothering you?"

"It's okay," I say, giving him a partial truth. It's not too bad, but it honestly feels worse this morning than it did yesterday. I think it may be getting infected. That's probably my fault for walking around barefoot all the time, but I like the feel of the floor beneath my feet. I love buying shoes, but I'm not big on actually wearing them.

I squeak when I'm suddenly lifted off my feet. My hands go to Roman's shoulders, clutching as he swings me up into his arms like I don't weigh anything. He doesn't seem to notice my weight at all, actually. It's honestly kind of hot. Damien was tall and lanky and he never picked me up. I'm only a size thirteen, but I always felt a little out of place next to him. Or maybe he made me feel out of place beside him. I'm not sure, but Roman doesn't make me feel that way.

He turns and plops me down on the island. The marble is cold beneath me, my thin shorts not offering much protection. The chill fades quickly when he runs his hand down my bare leg, leaving a trail of fire in his wake. A different kind of shiver rolls through me, and then he's propping my foot up to examine it, a furrow between his brows. I fight the urge to reach out and smooth that little wrinkle with my fingers.

"You need to keep this bandaged. It's infected." His fingertip runs across my instep and then he turns away.

He's back in seconds, the first aid kit in his hands. He pops it open and rummages through, setting aside various items before he finds what he's after. I open my mouth to tell him that I'm fine, but he glares at me before I can form the first syllable, so I shut up and sit patiently.

He cleans the cut with gentle hands, swabs ointment onto it, and then wraps a bandage around my foot.

"Thanks," I whisper when he's finished.

I expect him to let me go, but he doesn't. He looks up at me, his big hand still wrapped around my ankle. He's so close I can see little flecks of gold in his eyes, smell the coffee and minty toothpaste on his breath. I swallow hard at the heat in his gaze.

"You said you should apologize," he repeats his earlier comment now that he's done doctoring me up. "Are you sorry?"

"No," I whisper, unable to lie to him. Maybe I should be sorry for invading his privacy or throwing myself at him, but honestly, I think I'd do the same thing all over again. I want him, and I know he wants me too. Taking big risks and putting myself out there has never really been my thing, but I want to take one this time.

He slides his hand up my calf.

"Are you sorry?" I ask, my gaze locked on the play of emotions across his face. They swirl through his eyes so quickly I'm not sure where his head is at…what he's thinking…what he wants.

"No." His hand lands against my inner thigh, making me jump. "Easy, baby," he murmurs, placing himself between my spread legs.

"You apologized yesterday," I remind him, trying to ignore the way my stomach flips at the word baby. I love it when he calls me that.

"I lied." His mouth lands against my ear, his breath hot and heavy. "I'm not sorry for a fucking thing, Mila." His teeth clamp down around my earlobe. The sting sends a bolt straight to my clit. "You offered me two weeks," he says against my skin. "Did you mean it?"

"Y-yes."

He nips at my earlobe again like he's rewarding me for answering him. His hands skim across my thighs and then around to my hips. He grips me hard, holding me in place.

"I hope you're ready for me, sweetheart," he whispers. "It's too late to back out now."




ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ayden is the Amazon Bestselling author of the Ragnarök Prophesies series. She lives in the heart of Arkansas with her childhood sweetheart/husband of fifteen years, and their furry minions. When not writing, she spends her time hiking, reading, volunteering, causing mischief, and building a Spork army.

Ayden graduated summa cum laude with her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and Forensic Psychology in 2009 before going on to complete her graduate degree in CJ and Law. She currently puts her education to use in the CJ and Social Services field.

You can find her at http://akmorgen.com or on Facebook at http://facebook.com/akmorgen.

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Thursday, February 14, 2019

ENTWINED is here!


Happy Valentine's Day, Toby and Ever! 
And, you guys, too, if your idea 
of a happy Valentine's Day 
is reading one of my books, haha. 
(If so, I love you.)


But for real this time, the wait is finally over! ENTWINED IS LIVE! 
See how things wrap up for Ever, Toby, and Frankie in the final installment of The Ever Trilogy! 

If you've stuck around this long, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. 





ENTWINED
The Ever Trilogy, Book 3
By Jessa Russo








“After years of collecting souls without even a moment’s pause, I’d collected the one soul I swore I’d never harvest. The one soul I’d promised to protect. 
Against my will and without my permission.”

When soul collector Toby James met Ever Van Ruysdael, his second chance at life, his world, and his heart were thrown for a loop. After months of chaos, they’re finally in a good place. 
But fate has other plans for Ever and Toby, and now, both souls are on the line. 
All’s fair in love and war… when a Reaper comes knocking on your door.

Grab your copy on Amazon!
Add to your tbr on Goodreads!  
Paperbacks available soon! <3