Monday, April 26, 2010

Romancing Disaster in the Jungle

With the hit movie 2012, there's a lot of talk about what will happen on December 12, 2012. The premise of the movie goes: With the Mayan calendar ending on December 12, 2012, a large group of people must deal with natural disasters such as volcano eruptions, typhoons, and earthquakes. It’s an action, disaster film depicting what could happen at the end of the world.

In real life, various astronomical alignments and numerological formulae relating to this date have been researched, but there hasn’t been anything to substantiate a cataclysmic event. The Mayan calendar has a 5,125 year cycle and it happens to end of December 12, 2012. NASA compares the 2012 fear to the Y2K issue of the late 1990s.

From Disaster to Romance: If the Maya interest you and you prefer a sexy, adventure romance over doom and gloom, WILD JADE might be a book to check out. (I love the action adventure movies too.) Can love survive 1,300 years? I used the Maya and this premise in my novel WILD JADE. It’s an action adventure story but has no apocalyptic, end-of-the-world story. It’s about a Mayan couple who die tragically and are reincarnated as archeologists. One is haunted by her Shaman father who is warning her of yet more danger. Is the danger from an ancient past or from their present?

In WILD JADE, I used the Mayan calendar to name my hero and heroine from ancient Mesoamerica. Cimi and Kayab are Mayan days.

Will a cataclysmic or transformative event occur on December 12, 2012 as predicted by the Mayan Calendar? I doubt it. I’m sure there will be a ton of people hanging out at the Mayan pyramids in Mexico, Guatemala and other Central American countries drinking Dos Equis or margaritas.

Monday, April 19, 2010


Welcome to Passion Sense. Today I have Ellora’s Cave author Adele Dubois as a guest. To celebrate her latest release, DO ME GOOD from Ellora's Cave on April 14th, Adele agreed to do an interview.

Adele, can you tell us a little about DO ME GOOD?

I loved writing this story and hope readers enjoy it too. Here’s a summary:

DO ME GOOD by Adele Dubois

Penny throws her hot, but worthless mooch of a boyfriend out on her front lawn with his clothes, and vows never again to be a bum magnet. Exhausted by overwork and mountainous debt, Penny pleads for divine intervention.

Gunnar, a rebellious Nordic warrior cast into servitude by an angry god to learn humility, answers. While Penny sleeps, the celestial arrives to complete her chores, but she awakens and finds him. The handsome immortal kisses her, sparking a passionate, forbidden sexual encounter.

Dark forces seeking vengeance for Gunnar’s past misdeeds mark Penny as a target. To protect his lover, Gunnar tests immortality in a death battle using a god’s magical sword. But the strength of Penny’s love and passion might be what saves them both.

Do you have a character in one of your books that continues to haunt you at night or who surprised you when you wrote the book?

I had no idea when I started researching Norse mythology and Nordic Light Elves for DO ME GOOD that Gunnar would transform into such an interesting, multi-layered character. I admit I’ve developed quite a crush on him. He’s my total fantasy hero.

What's the best and worst part of being a writer?

The best part about being a full-time writer is the freedom to work whatever hours I choose. I do my best writing early in the morning until early afternoon. I break for lunch and then work again for a couple of hours. As I tire in the early evening and at night, I work on promotion and answer email. I put in a lot of hours, but take pride in the results when readers and reviewers say they love my stories.

The worst part? For me it’s the back, neck, and shoulder pain caused by long hours at the computer. I haven’t found a product yet that eliminates the stress on my joints and muscles while I work. The physical challenges limit my productivity more often than the creative challenges.

What specific piece of advice would you give a would-be writer trying to kick start a career?

If you have the ability to write a compelling story, work on your book even if your life is filled with conflicting demands. Make time. Don’t put it off. Once the book is finished polish, polish, polish until it’s absolutely perfect. Submit to agents and editors only after you’re sure the book is the best it can be. Be professional right from the start.

What books or authors have influenced your writing?

My local chapter of Romance Writers of America honors one member for outstanding volunteer service each year with the Susan Wiggs Award. When I received my first nomination, six years ago, I hadn’t read a Susan Wiggs novel. Since I’d been nominated for an award in her name, I decided I should become familiar with her work. I bought a few of her books and fell in love with her writing. Her stories and deep characterizations are amazing. She has become one of my favorite authors. Susan Wiggs taught me the power of character-driven plots.

With each of my books, I strive to create relatable characters. When a review site said, “Adele Dubois’ characters are endearing”, I knew I was on the right track.

Do your books have a particular theme or premise?

Regardless of the sub-genre, my stories feature everyday heroes and heroines who face extraordinary circumstances in their ordinary world. I like to write about average people in a contemporary setting whose lives are turned upside down. Even if the story has paranormal elements, my stories are woven with that common thread.

Do you have a favorite hero/heroine?

I think Laurell K. Hamilton’s character, Anita Blake, is one of the best fictional heroines ever written. J.D. Robb’s futuristic character Eve Dallas is terrific too. I also like Modesty Blaise, who might be the first mainstream kick-ass heroine ever created. The Modesty Blaise series by Peter O’ Donnell was published beginning in 1965 in England. I’m the proud owner of the series of vintage Modesty Blaise paperbacks. Those books are some of my most prized possessions.

Would you like to share something surprising about you that not many people know?

Hmm. I think the fact that I write erotic romance novels and that my favorite thing to do outside the house is drive my convertible with the top down says a lot about me as a woman. When I’m not writing stories or driving my car my life is very, very ordinary.

Thank you for inviting me to chat with you and your readers, Kathy! I hope you enjoy reading DO ME GOOD.
Thanks for being my guest Adele. I recommend the readers to check out your website and blog. You always have interesting topics posted and usually a hunky guy or two. And there's more information about your fabulous books.

Buy Link:

Monday, April 12, 2010

How to Increase Productivity

"Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort." -Paul J. Meyer

"Great minds have purposes, others have wishes." -- Washington Irving

"Success is a marathon, not a sprint. Never give up." - IBD November 30, 2001.


I’ve been working on increasing my productivity and have seen a big improvement by making a few changes in my writing routine.

Stephen King (Productivity King)

"Keep track of what you do and write everyday in a day timer or on a calendar. I record page counts and word counts which shows my progress. I record the total pages at the end of each week and at the end of each month. This is good to know for when you’re contracted and an editor asks, “How long will it take for you to complete the next book?” You’ll also see which months are more productive than others.

I also record days I write up blogs, edit and revise WIP or sold projects. How long does it take for you to edit a completed manuscript?

Blogging is a valuable tool, but also is time consuming. Make note of the time and days you spend on blogging. If you’re blogging too much, maybe you can cut back to once or twice a week. Record any major time chunks like a guest blog event. Keeping track of your time is like keeping track of what you eat during a diet. Sometimes you waste valuable time when you could be writing. For dieting, sometimes you don’t realize how much you eat until you write it all down.

Can you work on small projects like writing a blog during your lunch break? Or bring a chapter to edit? I write most of my blogs during my breaks at work. I check resources and find photos when I get home.

Use a digital timer to limit your time on Twitter, Facebook, email other social networks. If I don’t finish my email by 7:30 pm, I turn it off and begin writing and don’t look at it again until 10:30 pm or later.

Don’t check the Internet for “one little reference question”. I do this a lot and then find myself in a domino effect of searching other topics that don’t even relate to the original question. The things I discover might be interesting, but they’re not helping with my WIP. Instead I add a # sign and type in red and in capitals #LOOK UP SUCH AND SUCH. And later do a search for the # signs.

Buy a digital timer. They’re in the kitchen department at Walmart or Kmart. Set it to count backward from 3 or 2 hours, or whatever you can fit in for uninterrupted writing time. DO NOT get up to answer the phone, check email, make a snack, do laundry, (fill in blank for whatever you do to procrastinate), etc. If you have to get up, pause the timer and continue it when you come back to your writing.

This one may not be a favorite, but it helps. At least one weekend or one day a month, set your alarm for 4 am. YES, 4 am. Try it once. Preset the coffee pot the night before, quietly slip out of bed and go straight to your computer. DO NOT turn on your email. Start writing, even if you feel like you’re not awake, you’re mind is uncluttered, the house it quiet and you have it all to yourself. You’d be surprised how much you can get done. It’s like a mini writing retreat.

Add a Stop Doing List to your To Do List. Have the discipline to unclutter your schedule and stop doing unnecessary projects, volunteering for everything, taking on things you don't have time for, etc. Learn to say "No" and mean it.

Try these tips and see if your productivity improves. Please leave a comment and send me your tip or let me know if any of these tips have helped.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Tote Bag of Hot Books Contest

Spring is in the air, my flowers are blooming and the Romantic Times Convention is just around the corner. I think it's time for a contest. I'm giving away a tote bag full of Ellora's Cave books, a signed copy of one of my back list titles and a canvas tote printed with my latest title Damned and Desired on it. I selected a variety of books from a number of great Ellora's Cave authors and also a couple anthologies.

To enter: Email me at: and give me your name and email and answer these two questions.

1) Tell me your favorite setting for an erotic romance novel. (Is it on a tropical island, in a modern city, in the jungle, at a popular hot spot like Las Vegas, a ski resort, or an exotic locale?) If you don't have a favorite, tell me a setting of the last book you read. Settings usually give me ideas for future books. AND
2) Tell me the setting from one of my books. Hint: Check out the blurbs in my Books section on my website

Drawing: Will be on or around June 22, 2010. Just in time for summer beach reading. And it's also my birthday.
**Entering the contest grants us permission to list your first name as our winner and add you to Kathy's mailing list. Kathy respects your privacy and will not share information with anyone, promise.
Note: I'm really sorry but due to regulations and restrictions I can only offer this contest to addresses in the continental United States.

Feel free to share you favorite setting in the comment sections. Maybe I'll get an idea for an upcoming novel.