Thursday, May 28, 2009

Memorable Good rating for Seventh Heaven!

Tabitha Franc of WDRF Reviews gave Seventh Heaven a "Memorable Good" rating!

"Cate Masters blows me away with this spicy-sweet story. Lilah and Val are our very complimenting female roles, while the handsome bartender James takes up out male lead. Lilah and Val seem like the kind of friends that can argue and still laugh about it later. They are both very relatable. Lilah is our main character but seems so real you feel like you have known her for ages. As James tries to cut off ties with the people around him Lilah finds her way into his heart. This is a read that will leave you on the edge of your seat. The deep and powerful setting of this story had me wiping away tears while cheering James on. Cate has a great story on her hands with this."

Woot! Thanks so much, Tabitha!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wild Child Publishing released Liberation via Pen!

Finally, Liberation via Pen, my short women's fiction, is available from Wild Child Publishing!

Here's the story excerpt:
They talked about their aspirations as the steam evaporated from their cups. Krista confessed her literary insecurities while admiring the black flecks within his grey irises; eyes that invited close inspection. His lips likewise taunted her, whether involuntarily or not. She couldn’t tell if he intended to tease, or if he was just being nice. She hoped the former. Nice guys tended to bore her.
Todd set his gaze on her. “Follow the age-old creed–write what you know.”
Krista took the advice to heart, literally: what she’d known for the past two years was Ethan. She’d let him infiltrate her life, her apartment, her thoughts, herself. Thinking his invasion was laying the groundwork for a future, she’d dated him exclusively, rearranged her life to accommodate his likes and dislikes until she could no longer remember her own.
She wrote to rediscover herself, divine her innermost thoughts and feelings. From their seemingly serendipitous meeting to their breakup, Krista chronicled and dissected their relationship, building to the crescendo of their eventual fall.
She copied the first five pages for the critique group the following month. The chick lit writer said: “Your dialogue’s too stiff; make it sound more realistic.” “Make your prose more lyrical, but get rid of the adjectives and adverbs,” offered the poet. The mystery writer advised: “Foreshadow your events to build suspense.”
Krista nodded, noting each writer’s advice for her revision. She spent the next two weeks pouring over each sentence, mercilessly slashing words, constructing setting and scene, the cadence of her prose flowing lyrically. Like music, the words streamed luxurious legatos punctuated with sharp staccatos as demanded by the scene. They lifted her spirit, excited her neurons in a way that made her hunger for more. The high of writing a well-structured sentence was addictive.
As a bonus, certain aspects of her former relationship came clear. Ethan lived on the cutting edge of pop culture, always had to have the latest gadget, widget or gizmo. He was exceptionally good with technology. With people, not so much. Had she possessed the foresight to commit his faults to paper earlier, Krista might have been spared much heartache. The exercise allowed her to see, finally, that Ethan was an ass. By setting her emotions into words, she not only defined them, but her writing informed her self-definition.

And here again is the trailer:

Cate Masters’ novellas, short stories and flash fiction appear at various web zines and press sites. Visit her online at or

Monday, May 25, 2009

Welcome special guest author Laurie J. Edwards!

Cate: Readers, please welcome author Laurie J. Edwards. Laurie, will you please share a bit of background with us?
Laurie: Hi, Cate! Thanks for having me. I became a writer to deal with the stress of having five children under the age of seven. I signed up for the Institute of Children’s Literature (I highly recommend it!), and before I even finished the course, I’d made my first sale to Highlights for Children. I was hooked. I assumed getting published was a cinch. Ah, if only. As you and I both know, the rejections are myriad, but you have to keep hanging in there, honing your craft, and believing in that magical “someday.”

Cate: It seems your "someday" has arrived! You have two recent releases: a biography of the singer Rihanna and a story in the Summer Lovin’ anthology. Tell us about each and where they’re available.
Laurie: SUMMER LOVIN’ is a collection of love stories by six Climbing Rose authors about life on a ranch, summer jobs, sandcastle competitions, the tragedy of a flood, and falling in love with a rock star. My story in the anthology, "Summer Storms," is about sixteen-year-old Paige, who nearly drowns trying to rescue a Pomeranian trapped in floodwaters that sweep through her town. Chase, the hottie who saves her, wants to help her and her mother, but Paige won’t accept charity. And can she risk him unmasking the family secrets she’s kept hidden?

RIHANNA (PEOPLE IN THE NEWS) is about the R&B singer Rihanna, who loved to sing as a child, but had a rough homelife with a cocaine-addicted father. Discovered at age 15, Rihanna auditioned for Jay-Z and rose to stardom. My book offers a behind the scenes peek into Rihanna’s childhood, her rise to fame, her Grammy win, and some of the celebs she’s been connected with, including Shia LaBeouf, Timbaland, Maroon 5, and Chris Brown.

Summer Lovin’ will be available as e-book from the Wild Rose Press. The print book comes out July 10. The hardcover, library edition of Rihanna (People in the News) is for sale on as well as at the Lucent website, where the book is also available for download. And if you check out the ISBN, you’ll find it for sale in lots of bookstores around the world, advertised in many different languages from Finnish to Japanese.

Cate: Wow, that's impressive! Rihanna's very popular, so your bio is sure to be too!
You write across a range of genres: YA, YA romance, picture books, inspirational romance, and fantasy. Do you prefer any particular one over the other?
Laurie: YA is my favorite. It’s what I like to read as well. I’m also partial to picture books. Guess I’m a child who never quite grew up. I do enjoy writing for adults as well, but my heart is with kid’s books.

Cate: Are there any other writers, published or not, in your family?
Laurie: All of my children write &/or read. Two of my children majored in English in college. Over the years, they’ve all mentioned terrific book ideas they have. I hope they’ll put them into writing. My daughter and I plan to write a mystery series when she has a little more time. And my husband recently began jotting down humorous episodes in his golfing and motorcycling life. I’ve encouraged him to pull them together into books.

Cate: What inspires you in your personal life? In your writing?
Laurie: I think helping others inspires me the most. Actually, I enjoy helping others shape their work as much or more than writing my own.

Cate: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Easiest?
Laurie: For me the hardest thing is getting started. I’m always procrastinating, making to-do lists filled with jobs that I have to complete before I can write. Often that means writing time never arrives. Once I do sit down, that’s the easy part. Usually, if I can work undistracted, I get in the flow and zip along. Then comes the time to break away—that part’s painful. Most days I wish I never had to stop.

Cate: What’s the most rewarding aspect?
Laurie: Being a part of the writing community. I have never met a group of more giving, helpful, talented people. In many professions, you’re competing against each other. But writers—at least the ones I’ve met—always seem more than willing to share their knowledge and contacts. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help of many talented writing friends.

Cate: Do you feel as if your characters come alive vividly as you write? Do they assert themselves in ways that surprise you?
Laurie: Most of the time, yes, to the first question, although I’ve had a few duds, which is why those novels will ever see the light of day. And my characters always manage to surprise me. Sometimes they’re more real to me than the people around me. Picture one of my kids tapping me on the shoulder: “Uh, Mom, you missed the exit again.” Me, blinking: “I’m not on the high seas?” Pop! My bubble bursts, and I’m no longer engaged in a sword fight with a burly pirate. Sigh… Reality intrudes, and I’m carpooling to a soccer game again.

Cate: What comes first in your writing process – a scene, characters, title? Are you a plotter or pantser?
Laurie: For me, the plot always comes first. Usually as I plan the story in my head, I end up with characters who start talking to me.

Cate: Who are some of your favorite authors and books? What are you reading now?
Laurie: Wow, this is a hard one. I love to read anyone & anything—from cereal boxes to billboards, from non-fiction to teen angst. At the moment I’m steeping myself in Chinese history—Ming dynasty, to be exact—to make my next novel historically accurate.

Cate: Ah, another research junkie! So what's next for you? Anything in the works?
Laurie: At the moment, I’m throwing my energy into picture books—both writing and illustrating. I’m attending an SCBWI Illustrators’ Conference the end of June and have an appointment set up with an art rep to review my work.

Cate: You’ve been working on a Graphics Arts degree. Do you expect to apply that to the publishing industry as a children’s book illustrator?
Laurie: I hope the art rep and the industry info I get at the conference will move me in that direction. Being a children’s book illustrator, perhaps someday winning a Caldecott, has always been my dream along with being a published author.

Cate: Any other hobbies or specialties?
Laurie: I love art, of course, and crafts of any kind—needlework, sewing, cake decorating. You name it, I’ve probably done it. Fencing, bellydancing, horseback riding, skiing, and soccer have been my physical activities over the years. I love to travel; my goal is to visit all the continents. Only two to go—Australia and Antarctica. Oh, and my latest venture is riding in my husband’s sidecar—much nicer than the back of the bike.

Cate: Where can readers find you on the web?
Laurie: My blogs: Laurie J. Edwards, my publisher, The Wild Rose Press and The Susquehanna Writers
I'm also on MySpace and my
Twitter screen name is LaurieJEdwards.
I'm also on Facebook as Laurie J. Edwards.

Cate: Anything else you’d like to share?
Laurie: I’ll share my favorite quote: "When you love what you do, you’ll never have to work a day in your life." ~Harvey McKay

I feel blessed to love what I do—even when I’m tearing my hair out trying to meet deadlines—because deep in my heart I know there’s nothing I’d rather do. Well, except maybe lounge on the beach on a tropical island.

Cate: I bet you'd be sketching a story outline in the sand! On a final note, is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Laurie: What is your favorite book?

I’m giving away an e-copy of Summer Lovin’ and names will drawn from anyone who comments. Wishing you all a summer full of loving and fun!!

Cate: Thanks so much for sharing your personal story today, Laurie! And double congrats on your double release!
Readers, you heard Laurie. She's giving away a book to a random commenter... so start commenting! She'll pick a winner on Wednesday, June 3 around 8 pm EST.

A former teacher and librarian, Laurie J. Edwards is the author of more than 850 magazine and educational articles in addition to her published books. Her work has appeared in national magazines, textbooks, testing materials, and online. In addition, she is a freelance writer and editor for several publishers, has ghostwritten books, and also writes under other pseudonyms.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Magic of Lavender, contemporary dark paranormal romance

The Magic of Lavender
Book One, The Goddess Connection
Available for Kindle
and on Smashwords

Every woman should embrace her inner goddess. 
What’s your connection?

Jocelyn Gibson forgot about the realm of magic, but it never forgot her. Gram always told her: don’t ignore your magical gifts, it will insult the family. But Joss didn’t realize her gifts included channeling the energy of powerful ley lines. Or that her family included a goddess. 
Family connections come in handy when the Lord of the Underworld kidnaps local vet Eric Hendricks. He’s an amazing lover, but Joss didn’t know she loved him until too late. With a little help from the Goddess Iris, Joss defends the new life she’s forged, and helps save the town of Boiling Springs from destruction. Once Eric escapes Hell, can she stop loving him to keep him safe?

I have read a lot of novels. Very few of them have the same utterly charming, heartwarming quality of this novel. The Magic of Lavender is totally delightful from the very first word to the last. It tells the story of Joss, a string, independent woman who is unaware that she is related to a Fey Goddess.  Joss is also quite unsure of her own abilities and her own heart. It also tells the story of Eric, the local hottie veterinarian that Joss has feelings for. When the denizens of the Underworld pop up in their small town of Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania to threaten the town and Joss’s love for Eric, Joss is required to acknowledge her family connections, and learn to trust herself and her heart to save Eric.
This enchanting story brings in all the beauty of the Fey world, as well as the darkness of the Underworld, to combine in a glorious arrangement that is both exiting and captivating but still soothing all at once. As is obvious, I thoroughly enjoyed the story. It is a perfect length, which allows everything that needs to happen enough time to happen. The characters are obviously very expertly designed, instantly sparking to life on the page. I would most definitely encourage anyone with a love of fairies or lavender plants read this novel.
Night Owl Reviews - Top Pick

I've always loved books that center around Goddesses and The Magic of Lavender fits the bill perfectly. 
The cast of characters of this book keeps the book even more interesting.
 The underworld that was created by Masters is unique in that it is an entirely different way at seeing Goddesses. The Inn is on ley lines that help Joss use her magic. Using the ley lines she makes the Lord of the Underworld angry. You really need to read the book to find out what happens!
I cannot wait to read the second book in this series and other works by Cate Masters. This book really made me escape my boring life and enter into one that magic is possible. 

Romancing the Book - Top Review

The Magic of Lavender is a lovely paranormal romance that taps into everyone’s love of magic and soul mates. Although the story moves really fast at first and it takes the reader a while to get into the fast flow, Jocelyn, her friends and family are likeable characters; so is the town’s resident veterinarian, Eric, with whom Jocelyn feels a tenable connection.
The tension between Jocelyn and Eric is the element in the story that creates the most anticipation, conjuring images of passion and love that every person longs for. Cate’s writing is sensuous and inspiring, and the flow of the plot becomes so smooth that you cannot wait to find out how the story ends, and whether Eric and Jocelyn are truly meant for each other.
This read is fast and fun, and inspires one with a feeling of the possibility of love.

This has a very good plot and the characters are believable. I think that fantasy romance fans as well as paranormal romance fans can enjoy this.
Bitten by Paranormal Romance - 3

When her grandmother entered, fully dressed, Joss went to her. “Morning. Coffee’s on in the kitchen.”

Gram hugged her. “Jocelyn, are you all right? You had an eventful evening.”

To say the least. Gathering the votive candles, she spoke as if distracted by her work. “I’m fine.”

Standing slowly, Lydia’s blood-red nails clenched the air. “I’ve never seen so many fae invade a home at once.”

Neither had Joss. When she was a girl, swarms of glowing beings would flicker in the blades of grass, or leaves of trees. Sometimes flit to her window. But come inside? Only on occasions of rare importance. “Aunt Lydia—”

Her aunt came toward her. “The sign was very clear.”

Evading the interrogation, Joss wrestled a wing-back chair to the center of the carpet. “I can’t let myself believe in bad luck.” Safer to make her own luck through hard work than rely on luck bestowed by supposedly mythological creatures.

Gram stepped closer. “They’ve come back, Jocelyn. I’m not surprised, really, that you found their favor again, given our family history.”

Lydia added, “But you must treat them with respect.”

How could she admit she’d hoped they’d return? That in planting a field of lavender in the spring, she’d hoped to encourage them to stay?

Nor could she admit last night’s dream to her aunt. Like the lights, it had happened once before. The same night as before.

Long after saying goodnight to Gram and Lydia, Joss stood at her bedroom window and imagined a field of purple waltzing with the breeze beneath the stars. The image stayed with her as she settled into bed. It coaxed her to sleep, but grew more vivid with the lights out.

In her dream, the evening star shone more brightly than usual, and led her to the stone bridge. The silhouette of a man beckoned beyond the lavender field. She crossed the bridge into the lavender, and its blooms caressed her legs as she walked. Instead of its scented oils soothing her skin, it excited her. The thought of meeting him excited her too. Dusk deepened quickly, and she couldn’t see his face as he leaned down to kiss her. Pressing against him, her body fit snugly against his curves. He took her down into the lavender, filled her body and soul, with the stars glimmering so bright and low, they mingled with the violet blooms. He was so tender, yet strong. His caresses so loving, he brought her to heights she never imagined, and only after she was fulfilled did he allow himself release. Afterward, he rolled onto his back and pulled her close, his skin warm against hers. His voice rumbled through his chest. “Who needs fireworks with so many fireflies?” The reverberations made her fingers tremble, and she closed her eyes to listen to him breathing.

She’d awakened in a luscious afterglow, but bothered she had no clue who he was, or when she’d find him. Or what he’d meant about fireworks. In the dream, she knew exactly what he meant, but now...

Thanks to all who voted for the cover of The Magic of Lavender at Alternative Read! It won the July contest! :)

Friday, May 22, 2009

Welcome special guest author Beth Trissel!

Today I'm so pleased to have Beth Trissel as a guest. Beth's had quite a busy month! Her newest release, Through the Fire, is available today from The Wild Rose Press.
Here's what Eliza Knight, published author and HHRW Newsletter Editor, had to say about Through the Fire: "Ms. Trissel has woven a spellbinding, emotionally riveting story of love and adventure. Her writing is mystical, action packed, and heart wrenching, pulling you straight into the thick of it. Prepare to embark on a captivating journey with characters you'll fall in love with, and won't soon forget."
Sounds like another fantastic read! Congrats, and welcome, Beth!

Beth: My third & final release for this incredible month of May is upon me. THROUGH THE FIRE is coming to the Wild Rose Press in digital download and print today, Friday May 22nd at The Wild Rose Press. A fast-paced historical romance novel with a THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS flavor and a mystical weave, Through the Fire has finaled in more contests than any other novel I’ve written including the 2008 Golden Heart ® and it won the 2008 Linda Howard Award for Excellence in Writing.
People often ask which of my novels is my favorite; a tough choice as I love each one best as I’m writing the story, but if I have to choose one, it’s THROUGH THE FIRE. Rebecca is my favorite heroine. She’s angry and grieving at the start of the book and so was I following the tragic death of my youngest daughter’s best friend Garry to a drunk driver. Garry loved history and hearing about the colonial frontier. He would have loved this book, except for the mushy parts, of course. He was like that little boy in The Princess Bride.
Years ago while researching the Virginia colonial frontier, I came across a letter from Governor Dinwiddy to George Washington or Andrew Lewis, one of his other frontier officers, asking what happened to the reinforcements he sent out to an interior fort. That account coupled with a vivid dream inspired the opening of ‘Fire.’
Blurb: At the height of the French and Indian War, a young English widow ventures into the colonial frontier in search of a fresh start. She never expects to find it in the arms of the half-Shawnee, half-French warrior who makes her his prisoner in the raging battle to possess a continent––or to be aided by a mysterious white wolf and a holy man.
Already out at Amazon, Through the Fire will be available at other online booksellers in both digital download and print soon after its release. Local bookstores can order it in. For more on my work please visit

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Doing the diva thing tomorrow - and a special guest here

Tomorrow, visit Popculturedivas and let me know if you've experienced the great tech divide.

You'll also want to visit here, when author Beth Trissel is my special guest. Her novel Through the Fire releases tomorrow. It sounds fantastic!

Monday, May 18, 2009

The latest do-it-yourself

The New York Times yesterday had an interesting article about self-publishing with yet another twist: authors upload their works in PDF format to the Scribd Web site.
Scribd is a document-sharing site on the order of YouTube. Authors would keep 80 percent of the profits, based on a sale price set by the author.
The PDFs would be compatible with mobile readers, soon to include iPhones.
Amazon’s already doing this with CreateSpace.
As a reader, I’d be leery of any published story that bypassed the vetting process. No editor reads the work before it’s published – the author simply posts it. Worse, no editor works with the author to improve the work. A critical step, and one that could mean the difference between a blah story and a really good one.
Then, there’s the whole piracy issue. Few epresses have little recourse against piracy other than warning a site to stop distributing work. Authors lose a great deal of money by illegal sharing. If Scribd doesn't have a means to protect the PDFs, then you might as well post it on your blog for free, and make money through advertising.
Yes, many famous authors started out self-publishing. If I wanted to self-publish, I’d go with Publish America and see it in print. But frankly, I’d rather not brand my work with their name. While the author needs to make a profit to sustain their efforts, these publishers are in it simply for the money – not to publish great stories.
I’d be interested to hear what others think.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Trailer for One Soul for Sale

June 7 is coming up fast! Here's the trailer for One Soul for Sale, available on that day from Eternal Press!

At the coffee shop, Madelyn waits at a table by the window and scans the Evening Gazette. The news is always the same. Until she reaches page six, where a blurb describes a disturbance the night before in her neighborhood. Telephone reception was lost. Television signals were scrambled. Residents reported strange noises, though no one saw anything out of the ordinary.
No one but Madelyn.
The guy in all black comes through the door. Her breath is caught in her chest. As he holds her gaze, his dark eyes sparkle like black diamonds. Her heart pounds as he walks to her table and sits down across from her.
“It’s you.” But she’d known it would be.
His expression is warm and inviting as he looks her over. “I wanted to be sure that, with such a low starting bid, your soul isn’t tarnished.” He speaks to her as if she’s an old friend.
“I feel like it is.” She proceeds to spill her guts to him. Even as she thinks she should be embarrassed to be doing so, it makes her feel lighter, like unburdening herself opens up space inside her, previously made heavy with bad thoughts, unfulfilled hopes, despair and gloom. Now it’s kind of airy, little particles sparking in the light as they float by.
His gaze penetrates her to the core. “So you think fifty dollars is all it’s worth? Your soul – the essence of your being?”
She couldn’t feel more exposed if an x-ray of her insides were hanging in the window beside them. “It started out as a joke. I thought people would read it and laugh. I wasn’t expecting anyone to place a bid. I wasn’t expecting…” she gulps, “…you.” Her intellect recognizes the idiocy of her situation. And stupidity. What a mess she’s made.
He leans in, his voice low, his smile like a crocodile about to snap her up. His breath is like a heat wave across her face and neck. “Didn’t your mother warn you not to wish your life away?” It seems less a question than a reminder.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Just the Right Amount of Wrong - contemporary interracial erotic women's fiction

Just the Right Amount of Wrong
Available on Kindle

All wrong? That’s what Sara Mullaney’s parents always said about Ravelo Pena. She’s starting to believe it. After dumping her years ago, he’s back in town. And threatening to ruin her business plan designed to help local farmers. When he’s fired for trying to help her, she realizes he’s still the same old Rav. And she’s finding it hard to keep her hands off him. Can the right amount of wrong make the perfect combination?


Sara is a wonderful heroine, who you are compelled to root for, not just because she's pulling herself up by her own bootstraps, but because she's trying to do good in her community. She wants to change the lives of hundreds, and not out of purely financial motivations for herself.
Ravelo is smokin' hot. *Sigh.* Even though Rav works for the other side and his track record with commitment isn't great, I still found myself feeling for him because sometimes cultural expectations have a way of translating poorly when viewed from "outside" eyes.
- reader Michele Smith - 4 stars

Who would Cate cast in these roles? Check out the Casting Call for Just the Right Amount of Wrong.

He steered onto a gravel road that climbed a long hill. A blacktop driveway stretched toward a secluded A-frame log home. It could hardly be called a cabin. Its tall windows reached several stories high. A generous deck wrapped around it, with an opening for the stairs leading from the parking area. Sunlight poured through gaps in the clouds and through the branches of towering evergreens surrounding the house.

She felt her mouth gaping, and snapped it shut. “You live here?” His job must pay better than I thought.

“Yep, for now. Me and Frodo.”

“Your roommate’s a hobbit?” she deadpanned.

He pulled the keys from the ignition. “A cat, actually.”

Assessing the stairs ahead, she frowned. “But there are too many steps. You should have just taken me home.”

“You need to stay off that foot. Keep it propped up. You need me,” he said softly, “to take care of you.”

Right. Because he had a sudden protective urge? Probably brought on by his business proposition.

His smug smile as he climbed out irked her, but she couldn’t fault him for her injury. The blame lay squarely on herself. She’d always made an idiot out of herself around him. So focused on him, she couldn’t see where she was going. Just like today.

Read the full first chapter here.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Trailer for Liberation via Pen

Purple vs. playful

I recently finished the editing process for Liberation via Pen with a wonderful editor. His enthusiasm for my prose made me excited about this story again – one I’d set aside for many years, believing it would never find a home. Not only because it didn’t quite fit any particular genre, but because its wording was, well, different.
I joked with my editor that I’d been on a Tom Robbins binge prior to writing it. His editing expertise lifted the story level up a notch. And he provided a much-needed support system when the story hit a snag. With a proofreader who cried “Purple prose!”
I’m not one to reject suggestions out-of-hand. I’ve said it before: there’s a reason for editors (and yes, proofers too). And I appreciate the thoughtful, constructive criticism I receive. The aim of the writer and the editor should be to serve the story, and I want my stories to be the best they can be.
That said, I honestly didn’t agree with the assessment – and neither did my editor – but the publisher did. The phrases offending the proofer weren’t, in my opinion, “flowery.” Within the context of the story, they fit the tone of the protagonist’s voice - a playful voice playing with words. The main character’s a writer, after all – and everyone knows writers are slightly off balance. A little kooky. Our thought processes are skewed from the norm. Frankly, I like it that way. Apparently, some proofers – er, people – don’t.
Rather than compromise the tone of the story, I opted to cut the few phrases. Generally, they referred to acts of intimacy between a couple, but I’d phrased them in a playful way, as euphemisms. To translate them to the literal would have greatly diminished the story, I believe. Interrupted the flow of the prose in a way that might have thrown a reader off. Once you begin those reading roller coaster rides, a severe slowdown of dull description would serve to annoy, flatline the fun, and make it difficult to regain the momentum.
So perhaps this story should come with a disclaimer. If you’re looking for a story with predictable prose, Liberation via Pen won’t suit you. However, if you like a little effervescence, a little pop and sparkle (maybe with a slight lilac hue), then I hope you’ll read it. And enjoy it.
It’s due out with Wild Child Publishing on May 26 (though you can preorder it now!).

Here’s the story blurb:
Krista’s perfect happiness bubble bursts when Ethan tells her goodbye.
Numbed at her new job, she soon faces an even colder dismissal. Only the hungry
mews of her cat, Verisimilitude, snap her from her funk. A new beginning at a local book store brightens when cute Todd invites her to a writer’s meeting.
As Krista commits the story of her soured relationship to paper, elements come clear: Ethan’s manipulation, her capitulation, an amoeba-like existence. Todd becomes her mentor.
But just when things are finally going right, it all threatens to come apart. Ethan’s back, wanting his share of book profits. And Krista. She’s ready to take a chance with Todd, but is it too late?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

LASR's review of Seventh Heaven!

I couldn't wait to share! I've been waiting and waiting (and waiting) for a review. This one was worth waiting for!

"The characters in this book were very relatable with emotions that are very real and strike at your deeper emotions. Lilah's character wanted something more than she wanted to breathe at times and that something was James. How do you take the hurt away from someone when at first they don't want you to pity them? It wasn't pity she felt for James, it was a forever kind of love.

I don't want to give away anything in this book but I can say that the situations that arose were brilliant on the writer’s behalf. This book brought about emotions that I found refreshing. I almost cried a time or two. Don't get me wrong, I would not classify this as a sad book as they were tears of joy! I would have loved to see this book as a longer version or, perhaps, we could talk Ms. Masters into a sequel that takes us a bit further into the relationship of Lilah and James. I also would love to see Val have her own story.

Cate Masters is a gifted writer who wrote this book with talent and marvelous imagery. I could almost see, taste, hear and touch what was occurring in "Seventh Heaven." If you are looking for a book with a wonderful plot that is very well written as well as being entertaining, "Seventh Heaven" is the book for you. I look forward to reading more of Ms. Masters' work."

Yes, I'll be doing a happy dance tonight!

Wonderful review for The Duende and the Muse!

Wow - I'm thrilled that fellow Wild Rose Press author Hywela Lyn left me this five-star review for The Duende and the Muse!

This little gem is an absolute delight. It's quite unusual in that it's a first person, present tense narrative, and this gives it an wonderful immediacy. I felt I was right there with Melinda, sharing her frustration that her student doesn't seem to hear her, her anxiety that if she doesn't succeed with him she might lose her muse status – and the heat she feels when a certain duende is near her. Cate Masters puts words together in a way that is almost poetic, and brings the magic of her world to life. It's a delightful, quick and fun read and I can thoroughly recommend it.

Thanks so much, Lyn!
Anyone who purchases The Duende and the Muse can enter the Sony eReader contest, too! Details are here.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Textus Interruptus

I had a great Mother’s Day present yesterday – another contract for a novella, Wilderness Girl! And - oh, yeah - a cover already!
Not your typical Mother’s Day fare, though. It’s an erotic novella. I wrote it to challenge myself, and I have to say, it was much more difficult than I imagined. Getting those intimate details right requires a certain talent, and I may or may not make that foray again.
It began as an experiment, a much shorter story. Just to see if I could. The initial editor liked it, and suggested I expand it. I did, but the characters were so sweet, I didn’t know if it “fit” into the genre. So I took all that out and resubmitted it elsewhere. The new editor liked the story, but thought that I built up the sexual tension in the story only to let the reader down by not following through. She even blogged about it.
So, I added it all back in. And then some. No textus interruptus in this version. Readers expecting follow-through won’t be disappointed, hopefully. Yes, I could have removed all references and/or buildup, but it fit this story.
I love Wilderness Girl. The story and its characters have a lot of great elements. I’m looking forward to its release with Freya’s Bower sometime this year, perhaps the fall.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Release Day for The Duende and the Muse!

To celebrate the release of The Duende and the Muse, my short Faery (fantasy) story from The Wild Rose Press, I’m giving away a PDF copy to a random commenter. I'll announce the winner tomorrow night at 9 p.m. (Eastern). Just share something about your muse – or duende, as the case may be. Does inspiration light upon you like a butterfly? Or strike like a bolt of lightning, sizzling along your nerve endings, burning your fingertips until they’re forced to pound it out on paper or a keyboard? Sometimes the best stories come out like that, jumping from our head to the page almost fully formed.
The Duende and The Muse was a little of both. It started as a lightning strike, and I tweaked it a bit later, after it had cooled off a bit.
And if you don’t win today, if you purchase it (or Seventh Heaven, my Vintage Rosette), you can enter The Wild Rose Press’ contest to win a Sony eReader. Details are here.
Here’s the excerpt:
Melinda is startled when she notices a dark figure leaning against a booth across the aisle. He stands out like a charcoal etching against the background of clouds—harsh outlines, jagged features. Menacing yet compelling. He smiles, and lightning flashes from his dazzling white teeth, zinging through her.
She’s never seen a muse like him, but he must be one—otherwise, he wouldn’t be here. He wouldn’t be stepping toward her with the intensity of a jaguar, a laserlight in his eye, teeth bared in a hungry smile.
This guy looks like a Vanity Fair ad—layered hair mussed just so, sandals with a jacket and jeans that fit really well. She runs her hand across her belly to quell the tiny pinpricks. She’s been so busy with work lately, she hasn’t met anyone new.
“Who’s that?” Her wings can’t beat fast enough to cool the heat rising from deep inside her.
Calliope turns to Euterpe. “Oh my. How did he get in here?”
Euterpe squints in his direction, then furrows her brow. “A duende. They’ll let anyone in these days.”
That explains it. She’s heard of them—said to be a combination of charm, magic, inspiration, fire, magnetism—and demon. Muses were warned at an early age not to take up with duendes. Tales of muse-duende liaisons were fraught with disaster and downfall—for the muse. Duendes managed to carry on unscathed, though their methods of inspiration could be deadly for their students. The thought vanishes quicker than a flicker of sunlight on water as he moves toward her and says hello in a voice whose timbre resounds within her.
“Hi.” She stares, entranced by his dark beauty.
His smile envelops her. “I’m Devon.”
She extends her hand. “I’m Melinda. So nice to meet you.” Fire sparks in her fingers as he takes her hand in his, then leans to kiss it. A tingling crawls up her arms and neck and into her head, where it scrambles her thoughts. His gaze lingers on her lips, and they quiver open like a rosebud blooming in sunlight.
His voice is like a hot wind in the desert. “The pleasure’s all mine.”
Oh, she doubts it.

Monday, May 4, 2009

The big unveiling...

But first, got anything for an aneurysm, doc? A little something to put the spark back in the synapses? Jump-start the neural connections? I'm a bit braindead.
Actually, the antidote is to lay off the tech stuff awhile. You may have noticed I spruced up the old blog of late - new color theme, the awesome display of covers... no, please, no applause, I'm much too modest.
As if that weren't enough, I launched a new blog that's going to be pretty exciting... check out The Susquehanna Writers. We're a group of authors in the beautiful Susquehanna Valley in Pennsylvania (and thereabouts). I'll make my first post there tomorrow. Our group of writers is growing, so you'll want to bookmark it and visit often.
But I've yet to announce the piece de resistance. (Drum roll, please). I've been wracking the old brain cells by putting together a web site. Yes, finally. I know, I'm a bit lagging in that area but am attempting to catch up now. It needs some tweaking (I'll do it later, after my brain cells regenerate a bit), but here it is: Take a tour and enjoy the ride!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Author Brenda Novak's Fundraising Auction

Author Brenda Novak has raised more than $500,000 for diabetes research with her online auction. You can support a worthy cause by participating in her auction, which features great prizes:
A wireless Hewlett-Packard computer
Lunch with NYTimes Best-Selling Author Eloisa James at RWA National, DC
Name a Character in John Lescroart's 2010 novel, TREASURE HUNT
NYTimes Bestselling Author Christine Feehan's entire DARK series, autographed & other goodies!!
Lunch with Best Selling Author Barry Eisler in San Francisco
A Year of Books & Treats from Jane Porter
One Night's Stay at NORA ROBERTS' Inn
BRISINGR, Autographed by Author Christopher Paolini
6 Night Getaway to Seattle and Victoria, BC for 2 Courtesy of Author Jane Porter
ENDER'S GAME, Autographed Hardcover by Orson Scott Card (A)
MURDER, INK: A Mystery Bookstore In Miniature by A.J. Stewart

And that's only the items listed on page 1 of 4...

Her cosponsors include:
Laura B. Gschwandtner at
Harlequin Enterprises
Publisher's Weekly
RT Book Review Magazine
The Doug Knoll Show
Writer's Digest Magazine
Diablita Wines

Visit Brenda's auction page today. Your contribution could make a difference in someone's life.