Friday, May 30, 2014

Happy Friday!

I hope you had a great week! I can't believe it's the last Friday in May, and June starts on Sunday! This year has flown by. I can't help but believe the second half is going to be even better!

I'm so grateful to have wonderful friends helping me share the gorgeous cover for Goddess, Awakened. Thanks to Beckey White for posting it on In the Pages of a Good Book - another blog you should be following, if you aren't already.

Last day to enter!
The giveaway at Night Owl Reviews is on until tomorrow! If you haven't yet entered to win an ebook of Rock Bottom, I hope you'll pop over now. I'd love for you to read this fun, rock'n roll contemporary novel, recently re-released by Kensington's new Lyrical imprint.

Great review for Charmed
I'm likewise grateful to reviewers for taking the time to read and post reviews. I'm thrilled that Jasmyn of Bitten by Romance rated Charmed a 4-star read! And she's asked to read the third in the trilogy, Claimed. Woot!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

A cover reveal at long last for Goddess, Awakened!

Strangely enough, the world did not come to a standstill while I was away for four days. Kensington made Goddess, Awakened, available for preorder!

The wonderful folks at ARe Cafe are helping me get the word out with a cover reveal today. I hope you'll pop over to see it - it's gorgeous.

Or you could visit author extraordinaire, Arlene Webb, and view the cover there. If you haven't checked out Arlene's site yet, you should. Right now.

I've also set up a review blog tour with Literary Nook that starts July 20, and am very excited about that. I'm still gathering some items to include in a giveaway basket - earrings and lavender soaps and some other goodies I haven't yet decided upon. Once I have it assembled, I'll share a photo of it.

More cover reveals are on the way. I'm so grateful to my wonderful author friends! :)

Hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Off to Nirvana

I'm outta here! Since last summer, I've waited for this day to arrive. I'm finally headed to writer's nirvana  - a four-day workshop run by Dara Marks and Deb Norton.

I'd hoped to have more written for my next Goddess Connection novel to take along and bounce off other writers. But at least I'll be able to gather ideas and talk shop.

The attention spans of the family grow short in a hurry when I go on (and on) about stories. And writing in general.

It's going to be so great to talk to others who understand the importance of people who don't truly exist except in our imaginations. Other writers get it, this obsession we have. They don't question our enthusiasm and passion, and they understand the process. They feel other writers' pain. And joy!

I'll return Sunday night but it'll take me longer to catch up with real life. It's going to be tough, after living in Nirvana for four days.

Have you hit any conferences this year? Workshops, in real time or virtual? Any on your Bucket List?

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Behind the scenes

Lots going on. In between finishing up galley proofs for Goddess, Awakened (whoop whoop!), and in between the usual life interruptions, I'm trying to get more writing in on another Goddess novel. Then I realized that, although I'd done quite a bit of research, I needed to do more. Even though most of it will show up as an aside or odd detail and readers won't ever see most of it, I have to do it for my character. So he can walk through the streets of the city he lived in and I can walk along with him.

It's been slow getting back to this story, but it's coming together. Not only in writing - I now have about 31,500 words, not much more than I had before - but in the overall sense. I've been fleshing out characters and building framework around them so they have a place to go. And a good reason to go there. All part of the story, as Neil reminds us.

Two covers!

I'm dying to show you! I have the covers for Twice In A Blue Moon, my contemporary, and for Goddess, Awakened, the first in The Goddess Connection series.

But I have to wait. Once RT is over, I can coordinate with my Kensington contact and set things in motion.

To gear up for the July 7 release of Goddess, Awakened, I'm putting together a gift basket of lavender goodies. So far, I have lavender mother-of-pearl earrings and a gift collection of lavender soaps, both from artists on Etsy. I love shopping there and supporting artists in their crafts.

I may or may not be around much most of next week too. I have much to do behind the scenes yet....

Saturday, May 10, 2014

SanFran in the spotlight

A throwback spotlight, that is. To 1906, the year of the great San Francisco Earthquake, and the setting for my historical, Betting It All.

Pop over to Romantic Historic Reviews to say hi! While you're there, enter to win an ebook of Betting It All through the Rafflecopter.

Here's what two reviewers had to say about Betting It All:

"Cate Masters captures the feeling of being in San Francisco in 1906 at the time of the Big Quake. The people's struggles are real, their feeling of despair is real and so is the  determination of starting over. Norah and Mac go through everything together, come very close to losing one another, and come out stronger than ever. The end had me shedding tears of happiness when a surprise visitor makes an appearance to check on our feisty Norah. Norah went to San Fransisco to start a new life, and make something of herself, and she gained everything she could have hoped for and them some. Every woman should strive to be a little like Norah.....she rocks!" - Sarah Says Read Romance

And “Cate Masters is able to tell a story with engaging characters, hot romance, and a strong heroine–no shrinking violets here! It is a magnificent escape from reality.”- My Devotional Thoughts

Rock Bottom Giveaway Still Going Strong

Don't forget, there's still time to enter the giveaway for my contemporary rock romance, Rock Bottom, at Night Owl Reviews, too!

Happy weekend!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Falling in love... with characters

Despite the fact that I'm sick yet again (!!!) with a cold, I've been writing. I haven't been concentrating on word count so much as getting the words right, and building backstory. Fleshing out the characters and yes, falling in love with them.

While I only added a few thousand words to the next Goddess Connection novel, I'm in the first stage of love with the characters. That blissful stage, before I get to know them too well. All their frailties, faults and quirks. And before they do something to piss me off, lol. So far, they have surprised me in the best way. I love when characters do that.

I've also been mapping out the story a bit in advance, laying the framework to give me somewhat of a structure but not so much I become claustrophobic. The exercise also helps me get to know the characters and how they'll react in various situations, sometimes not the most pleasant circumstances. Because that's how they reveal their true character - under pressure.

Like real people, right? To me, they're a little too real sometimes, lol.

Happy Dance Time!

Today I signed a new contract with Kensington for my paranormal/fantasy novella based on Grimm's fairy tale, The Griffin. Not one of the best-known fairy tales, and my story's a loose interpretation with a contemporary rock and roll setting. Here's the unofficial blurb:

His Harley. The girl he loved. His guitar. Jackson Grant thought he had it all. Until one tragic accident stole it all away. Afterward, more than scars mar him. A curse prevents him from loving again, so he makes sure never to get close to anyone. Until a new roadie gig with Malcontent, the most popular band in the world, entwines his fate with Layla’s. Her sweetness reaches deep inside to heal his wounded heart, but loving her would mean a death sentence for her.

Music’s what Layla lives for. She has no choice. She’s bound by magic to the band Malcontent, cursed to propel them to stardom with her musical powers. With no way out, she’s about to give up. Then Jackson Grant appears and gives her hope that he’s the one she’s been waiting for, a hero who’ll finally free her. A reluctant hero, at best, but one she can’t resist.

Their only chance is to break free of their invisible prisons. Can Jackson undo Layla’s magical tie to Malcontent without causing her greater hurt than heartbreak? Can Layla claim what’s rightfully hers and convince Jackson they have a shot at happiness?

Happy Thursday! Dance along with me, won't you?

Monday, May 5, 2014

Small triumphs count

I tend to be more critical of myself than anyone. Because of that, I push myself harder. Expect more of myself. Try to be better.

Sometimes I exhaust myself too. And then I get caught in a loop of not finishing what I start, and set myself further behind. As a result, I'm overwhelmed.

Case in point: my notebooks. I actually found a few more after taking this photo. Inside are notes, scenes, ideas. Some, I'd forgotten about and finding them again was like discovering buried treasure. Add yet more stories to the WIP list!

But the thing is, I can never finish them all. I've realized that, with regret. I have to be more choosy about how I spend my time, and spend more time on the stories I love best.

Instead of opening my computer and staring at the list of folders containing all the stories screaming for attention, I home in on one.

Rather than driving myself crazy paging through all these notebooks, I open one. Maybe add a little more to the notes I already have, or maybe start transcribing.

Focus and persistence. That's what it comes down to.

I was really down these past few months because I had two stories in my head demanding I finish them. One, I'd really hoped to have a working draft of a novel for the workshop later this month, and the second I knew would be a novella. More do-able.

So these past few weeks, I focused on the shorter one. I'd been adding notes, collecting more ideas, stringing threads together in my head all year. And I'd had some crit partners read the opening chapters. When I finally applied butt to chair and fingers to keyboard, it came together. I finished. *cue the angelic choir!*

I spent another few days revising, filling in thin spaces, and felt pretty good about it. So this weekend, I let it fly into my editor's inbox.

I was very excited when she emailed back to say it sounded fantastic and she couldn't wait to read it. My fingers are still crossed. Wish me luck!

I will work on the novel, but have accepted I won't finish it. Maybe not a bad thing. Maybe the workshop will provide the direction and boost I need for it. In any case, I intend to spend as long as I need to make it the great story I know it can be.

At Daily Dose of Decadence

Today I'm visiting Decadent Publishing's Daily Dose of Decadence sharing some background on the 1906 Great Earthquake in San Francisco, the setting of my historical, Betting It All. I hope you'll pop over and say hi!

Have a great Monday!

Friday, May 2, 2014

May giveaway!

Happy May! So nice to see the sun after a week of deluges and downpours, isn't it?

A great time to take your e-reader out to the hammock and kick back! This month, you can enter to win an ebook of Rock Bottom, my contemporary rock romance re-released by Kensington Publishing's Lyrical Press imprint.

Just go to Night Owl Reviews and enter through the Rafflecopter. Easy peasey!

Have a great weekend!