Friday, August 9, 2019

Today in The Loft: Canadian author Maggie Blackbird!

Joining me today in The Loft is fellow eXtasy author Maggie Blackbird! An Ojibway from Northwestern Ontario, Maggie resides in the country with her husband and their fur babies, two beautiful Alaskan Malamutes. When she’s not writing, she can be found pulling weeds in the flower beds, mowing the huge lawn, walking the Mals deep in the bush, teeing up a ball at the golf course, fishing in the boat for walleye, or sitting on the deck at her sister’s house.

The avatar for author Maggie Blackbird

S:  Welcome, Maggie! I am so happy you could join me today!

Tell me, why did you become a writer?

M:  I became a writer because I have to write.  It’s that simple.  (Laughs.) I write whether I publish or not.  So I thought, “If I’m doing all of this writing, why not see if I can make a career out of it.” I have the wonderful eXtasy Books author V.J. Allison to thank for introducing me to eXtasy Books. 

S:  (Nods.) V.J. is a wonderful friend to have in the book world. She is very supportive of other authors.

What attracts you to the romance genre?

M:  I love the build-up and tension of two characters meeting, overcoming the internal or external problems they face that’s keeping them apart, and watching them overcome the hurdles, all in the name of love. There is nothing more romantic than that.

S:  (Smiles.) My grandma always told me that true love doesn't just happen, you have to work for it. I enjoy that tension in love stories as well. The willingness to struggle and overcome differences.

Do you write in other genres?

M:  Just romance.  I’ve read romance since I was about 12 or 13 years old, so it’s a genre I’m very familiar with, writing or reading.  If I was to delve into other genres, I’d have a lot to learn first before attempting a book. 

S:  Well, they do tell you to write what you know, which is why I write about lawyers in love. 

Tell me, what’s your definition of romance?

M:  I went over to Webster's Dictionary to see how romance is defined as a noun, and there are five answers, with number one having two categories and three sub-categories. So I guess even the world has a hard time defining romance. (Laughs.) I see romance as respect. Two people respecting one another as individuals:  Physically, emotionally, mentally, intellectually, and spiritually. To me, that’s about as romantic as you can get.

S:  You've just described the components of intimacy, the bond that couples need for love to thrive.

What is your favorite thing about writing romance?

M:  Two people with conflicting needs who overcome all the obstacles I place in front of them as a mean ol’ writer, so they can have their Happily Ever After. I love reading it and writing it.

S: (Chuckles.) It is nice to have that kind of control, isn't it? Though sometimes, I think my characters take over and tell the story the way they want it told. They seem to feed me the words that flow from my fingers.

Tell me about the Matawapit Family Series, which is being published by eXtasy Books.

M:  Sure. Here's the series description--

In the wilds of Northwestern Ontario, the adult children of a domineering Ojibway church deacon find their faiths crumbling and their beliefs faltering when a vengeful former lover, an ex-fiancé out on parole, and a seductive family enemy challenge Emery, Bridget, and Jude in a duel of love, loyalty, and values that threatens to destroy their perfect Catholic lives and family.

S:  Tell me about "Redeemed," the first book in the series.

M:  "Redeemed" is Book One in the series and can be read as a standalone. It's a story about a single woman who battles to keep her foster child from his newly-paroled father, a dangerous man she used to love. Here's the blurb--

Bridget Matawapit is an Indigenous activist, daughter of a Catholic deacon, and foster mother to Kyle, the son of an Ojibway father—the ex-fiancé she kicked to the curb after he chose alcohol over her love. With Adam out on parole and back in Thunder Bay, she is determined to stop him from obtaining custody of Kyle.

Adam Guimond is a recovering alcoholic and ex-gangbanger newly-paroled. Through counseling, reconnecting with his Ojibway culture and twelve-step meetings while in prison, Adam now understands he’s worthy of the love that frightened him enough to pick up the bottle he’d previously corked. He can’t escape the damage he caused so many others, but he longs to rise like a true warrior in the pursuit of forgiveness and a second chance. There’s nothing he isn’t willing to do to win back his son–and Bridget.

When an old cell mate’s daughter dies under mysterious circumstances in foster care, Adam begs Bridget to help him uncover the truth. Bound to the plight of the Indigenous children in care, Bridget agrees. But putting herself in contact with Adam threatens to resurrect her long-buried feelings for him, and even worse, she risks losing care of Kyle, by falling for a man who might destroy her faith in love completely this time.

S:  That's sounds like a pretty intense love story!

Where can readers buy your book?

M:  It's available from all major booksellers, including--

S:  You also have a book coming out this fall, "Sanctified." Can you share something about that?

M: "Sanctified" is also part of the Matawapit Family Series.  Here's the blurb--

In the midst of a battle for leadership at their Ojibway community, two enemies of opposing families fall in love...

After suffering a humiliating divorce, infuriated Catholic, Jude Matawapit, bolts to his family's Ojibway community to begin a new job--but finds himself thrown into a battle for chief as his brother-in-law's campaign manager. The radical Kabatay clan, with their extreme ideas about traditional Ojibway life, will stop at nothing to claim the leadership position, and rid the reserve of Western culture and its religion once and for all, which not only threatens the non-traditional people of the community, but Jude's chance at a brand-new life he's creating for his children.

Recovering addict, Raven Kabatay, will do anything to win the respect and trust of her older siblings and mother after falling deep into drug addition that brought shame and anger to her family. Not only does she have the opportunity to redeem herself by becoming her brother's campaign manager for chief, if he wins, she'll have the reserve's backing to purchase the goldmine diner where she works--finally making something of herself. But falling in love with the family's sworn enemy--the deacon's eldest son, Jude--will not only betray the Kabatay clan but everything Raven believes in and has worked so hard for. 

S:  Wow. That sounds like another intense tale! 

Maggie, thanks so much for joining me today. If you'd like to learn more about Maggie and her books, please visit--

Amazon Author Page:

Next week in The Loft:  Author Holly Bargo!

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Congratulations to Tina Donahue on her new release!


Where there’s a will, there’s wicked fun…

Drowning in bad luck, Cari doesn’t know where to turn when the unexpected happens. A loyal customer at her Key West café has left her an inheritance. She hopes for cash to save her restaurant but receives an old brass bottle that looks like a sex toy…and has Jez inside.

At six-four, he’s built like a gladiator, has looks to die for, and oozes sexuality. He’s also a jinn.

Color her enthralled and excited. Besides being one hot dude, he grants wishes, right?

Not for her. Ironclad tradition demands he serve men, not women. Of course, if she wants to get down and dirty with him, he’ll gladly oblige.

Let the battle of the sexes begin. Before long, their differences fall away as they indulge in every lusty desire, while falling hard and fast. Ah, paradise. Until trouble arrives, threatening to pull them apart forever…


This can’t be happening.

She raised her face.

The smoke broke apart, floated to the ceiling, and disappeared.

Leaving a thirtysomething man standing before her.

He opened his lushly lashed eyes.

Her breath caught. His irises were closer to gold than hazel, his shoulder-length brown hair thick and wavy, stubble outrageously sexy, mouth sensuous, one dark eyebrow arched at her.

He planted his hands on his lean hips.

Holy fuck. A gladiator couldn’t have owned more muscles, though they weren’t overdone like Arnold Schwarzenegger’s, but totally male.

Her pussy creamed.

An odd reaction since this couldn’t be real.

When the knob flew off the bottle, it must have ricocheted off the wall and hit her head, causing her to hallucinate this, or rather, him.

Only one way to find out. She grabbed his calf. Its brawn and heat made her ears buzz.

Grinning lewdly, he flexed his muscles and pressed into her touch.

This was no dream. She snatched back her hand. “Who-who-who-who—” She shivered so badly, she couldn’t speak, but had to. “Who are you? What are you?”

His eyebrows shot up to his hairline. He lifted his chin. “You, a mere woman, dare to question or demand anything from me?”

“Huh?” Not liking his sexist attitude, she scrambled to her feet. At five-seven, she couldn’t match his height. By her guestimate, he topped out at six-four and was the most perfect man she’d ever seen, except for his patronizing gaze. Precisely what she didn’t need. “Again, who or what are you? This is my place. My kitchen. Not yours. Answer me.”

“I answer only to my master. Go on.” He gestured her away as Antonini had. “Fetch the man in charge.”

As if. Before she could slug him, he pivoted and regarded her kitchen warily, as a one-percenter would, seeing only how small and simple it was.

She couldn’t have cared less if he found her digs lacking.

He next focused on her buñuelos.

If he gave them a pissy look or said one unkind thing about her cooking, he wasn’t long for this world, even if she didn’t know how to off him.

Bent at the waist, he sniffed the treats and licked his lips.

Growling sounded.

His stomach?

Holding one buñuelo between his thumb and forefinger, he examined the fried dough carefully, licked the contours, then popped the treat into his mouth. As he chewed, his lids slid down and he moaned the way guys do during orgasms.

Buy links:



Saturday, August 3, 2019

Win Books 1-3 in the Feisty Lawyers Series!

In preparation for the fall release of Book 4 in the Feisty Lawyers Series, “Hope,” Seelie is giving away the first three books in the series! To enter to win, send an email to with the subject line, “I want my Feisty Lawyers fix!” and include your name, email address, and your preferred format for eBooks. One name will be drawn at the end of August. You will be contacted by email if you win. Only one entry per person, please!

Friday, August 2, 2019

This week in The Loft: UK author Alice Renaud

Joining me this week in The Loft is UK romance author Alice Renaud. The author of numerous published short stories, Alice's first book, "A Merman's Choice" was published in January 2019. It is the first book in a fantasy romance trilogy inspired by the landscapes and legends of Brittany and Wales. Born and raised in Brittany, Western France, Alice now lives in London with her husband and son.

Author Alice Renaud

S: Welcome, Alice! Thanks so much for joining me today!

Tell me, what's your favourite thing about writing romance?

A:  I can fantasize about hot men and call it work. It does wonders for my love life.

S:  (Smiles.) I think all romance writers understand that. Is that what attracted you to the romance genre?

A:  I like to see people overcome their problems and find happiness. I love happy endings. I hate gloomy books and sad endings. There’s enough of that in real life.

S:  Do you write in other genres? 

A:  I have written fantasy novels and family-themed short stories, but I prefer romance. Still, I am a big fan of fantasy. My favorite writers are Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, and Ursula Le Guin. I currently write fantasy and paranormal romance, which is a blend of my two favorite things. In addition, I wrote a short time-travel story this year, "The Sweetest Magic of All," and enjoyed that very much. It will come out in the BVS supernatural romance anthology, "Mystic Desire" this year. It goes up for presale on September 1.

S: Congratulations on the anthology. That's very exciting!

What’s your definition of romance? 

A:  Finding the person who will love you just as you are, and loving them back.

S:  (Nods.) Acceptance is very important for unconditional love. 

However, they say before we find our prince, we must kiss a lot of frogs. So I have to ask. What was your worst date ever?

A:  This guy talked at length about his favorite hobby, which was bell-ringing. Then he told me that he had weirdly shaped feet, and proceeded to describe them in detail. Oddly, I didn’t find that much of a turn-on.

S:  (Laughs.) Wow, that's pretty creepy!

What attracted you to your current partner?

A:  He was very easy to talk to and had lovely blue eyes. On our first date, he brought me red roses. And didn’t mention his feet once!

S:  Now he sounds like a keeper!

Tell me about your book, "A Merman's Choice."

A:  "A Merman's Choice" is Book 1 of the Sea of Love series. Here's the blurb--

For centuries the shape-shifting mermen of the Morvann Islands have lived incognito among humans. But one of them, Yann, has developed some bad habits. Like rescuing humans, even when doing so risks revealing his true nature. When he fishes Alex out of the sea, he doesn’t expect her to reappear eight months later, and turn his life upside down by asking him to be her guide.

Alex is determined to fulfill a promise to her dying grandmother, by gathering pictures and stories of the Morvanns. But she soon discovers that, on these remote Welsh islands, legends have a habit of becoming true!

Over the course of a few days, Yann and Alex grow close. But some mermen hate humans. Their hostility, and Yann’s secret, threaten to tear the couple apart just as they are discovering that they are soul mates. Can Yann overcome the obstacles in his path and make the right choice?

S:  Now that is good fantasy! Where can readers buy your book?

A:  It's available through the following buy links--

S:  Alice, thanks so much for joining me today! If you would like to learn more about Alice and her books, please visit--

Next week in The Loft: Author Maggie Blackbird!

Friday, July 26, 2019

This week in The Loft: Author Denise Wheatley!

Joining me today in The Loft is fellow eXtasy author Denise Wheatley! Denise, who writes romance, is best known for her chick lit novel, "I Wish I Never Met You," which was published by Simon & Schuster in 2004. Since then, she has published several novels and novellas, writing contemporary and paranormal romance, as well as romantic suspense. Chicago born and raised, Denise is an avid screenwriter, blogger, ghostwriter, true crime television addict, and a self-proclaimed pop culture expert.

Author Denise Wheatley

S:  Good morning, Denise! Thanks so much for joining me today! 

Tell me, where do you do your best thinking?

D:  In bed and in the shower.

S:  Who inspires your flights of fantasy?

D:  Actor Dennis Haysbert makes me swoon. His dashing good looks, deep sexy voice, and distinguished gentlemanly mannerisms have inspired many of my male characters.

S:  (Chuckles.) I had to look him up. He's the guy from the Allstate commercials! You're right. What a great voice! 

What's the best advice you've ever given?

D:  Do not want anyone who doesn't want you. I share that advice with many people. It's something I learned from Maya Angelou.

S:  That's really great advice. I wish more people would heed it! 

What's the best advice you've ever been given?

D:  It's better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it. I got that one from my mother.

S:   (Nods.) A mother's wisdom is usually spot on.

Complete this sentence: "Writing is..."

D:  Writing is therapeutic, necessary, and in my blood.

S:  That means you write from the heart and that's a good thing.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

D:  Taking care of my parents when they've been ill. There's no better feeling than loving them back to life and knowing that my actions are such a huge part of their recovery.

S:  (Smiles.) My dad is 93. It's amazing how the roles switch, isn't it? 

What's you favorite day of the year?

D:  I love Christmas Day, because it's such a warm cozy festive holiday, filled with friends, family, love, food, and of course, gifts!  And yes, I'm that person who decorates my home way too early and watches every single holiday movie.

S:   What do you crave?

D:  Chocolate chip cookies, French fries, love, happiness, and books.

S:   If you could have any animal in the universe as a pet, what would it be and why?

D:  I would have a Koala Bear, because not only are they are adorable, but they also live such an enviable lifestyle. Koala's don't have to drink much water, they sleep 20 hours a day, and they spend the remaining four hours eating and seeking companionship. Now that's the life! (Laughs.)

S:  You are offered on the following gifts: A day back in time, a glimpse into heaven, or perfect health. Which would you choose?

D:  I would choose perfect health, because many things in life start there. Without good health, partaking in some of the simplest activities can be impossible. Being unable to do the things that you enjoy is miserable. Good health is imperative to living a satisfying life, so that would be my my gift!

S:  I am with you there. People do not realize the value of good health until they lose it.

Denise, thanks so much for joining me today! If you would like to learn more about Denise and her books, please visit--

Instagram:  https://www.instagram,com/denise_wheatley_writer
Amazon Author Page:

Next week in The Loft:  Author Alice Renaud!

Friday, July 19, 2019

This week in The Loft: Author Tim Smith!

This week in The Loft, I welcome fellow eXtasy author Tim Smith! Tim is an award-winning, bestselling author of romantic mystery/thrillers and contemporary erotic romance. He is also a photographer, freelance writer, editor, and blogger. When Tim isn’t writing, he can often be found in The Florida Keys, doing research, parasailing, and seeking the perfect Mojito. 

Author Tim Smith

S:  Thanks so much for joining me today, Tim! I wish I could offer you a Mojito, but I'm afraid that's outside my skill set. You'll have to settle for coffee! 

Tell me, why did you become a writer?

T:  I discovered the wonderful world of literature when I was young, thanks to my mother, who was an avid reader. I loved losing myself in the adventures I read and thought I’d like to try my hand at it. I’ve always enjoyed creative writing and when I hit the middle-aged crazy phase of my life, I had this idea for a spy adventure. I challenged myself to either write the damn thing or stop talking about it. I wasn’t going to pursue publication until I showed it to a couple of friends and family members, who encouraged me.

S:  What attracted you to the romance genre? As you know, men are far and few between in our circle!

T:  I initially wrote a series of spy thrillers that contained a strong romantic element, but I didn’t consider myself to be a romance writer. I found that adding that kind of relationship between the hero and heroine made for a more interesting story. What really attracted me to it was when I attended a large book festival. I noticed that other authors were pulling in bigger crowds than I was, because they had written romances. After reading one of them, I thought it would be fun to write one told primarily from the man’s perspective. I also knew I could write something better than the one I had read.

S:  Do you write in other genres? 

T:  I tend to stay in my comfort zone of mysteries, thrillers, and light romantic comedy. Those are the types of books I read for my own enjoyment. I’ve read other romance genres, like paranormal, shape shifter, and western, but they didn’t really grab my interest. When vampire romance was the hot ticket, I read one and didn’t understand the appeal. I don’t try to cash in on the latest trend. For a while, it seemed like every author I knew jumped on the Fifty Shades bandwagon. Many of them are successful with that genre, but it isn’t my brand of scotch.  

S:  I give you credit for writing what you're comfortable with. I believe in sticking with what you know. Personally, I write in genres I enjoy, rather than what seems to be the bestselling ticket. I'll never get rich doing it, but I am content.

What is your favorite thing about writing romance?

T:  I enjoy developing the characters and watching them get to know each other, especially if there are any differences they need to overcome. It’s fun to explore a person’s emotions and thought process at that phase of a relationship. I like to keep things lighthearted and funny, and writing flirting scenes offers endless possibilities. Even in my adventure stories, I’m always looking for opportunities to drop in some laughs to ease the tension.

S:  (Smiles.) You and I have that in common. I inject levity to provide my readers with a break from the intense scenes. And some of my books do get intense!

I think how we write romance reflects our own romantic experience. Tell me about your worst date ever!

T:  I met someone through a friend and it appeared we had some things in common. We met for dinner and my date mentioned for the first time that she raised horses. Over the next hour, she talked about nothing else. My knowledge of anything equestrian is limited to win, place, or show at the track, so I was lost. When she finally finished educating me on the subject, she actually had the nerve to say “You haven’t said much.” My unspoken response was “Talk about something I can contribute to and I will!” 

S:  (Nods.) Nothing worse than thinking, "WTF am I doing here?" on a first date!

What would you like people to know about you?

T:  I like getting good reviews, and they help with sales, but they aren’t life or death for me. I say that because no one has ever said they bought one of my books because so-and-so gave it five stars. I don’t write for the critics. I write for the person in Parma, Ohio or Rugby, North Dakota who wants some escapism. I think most authors are loath to admit this, but we write to entertain. One of the nicest compliments I can receive is when someone says “I can’t wait to read your next one.” It doesn’t get much better than that.

S:  I'm with you there! I am actually a bit skeptical about the review process. I've read books that have 3,000 five-star reviews that I thought were complete trash. I am convinced that those reviews were written by bots, not readers!

If you had to do it all over again, would you still choose to write books?

T:  Definitely, but I would probably use a pseudonym that doesn’t identify me as a male author. It’s been very difficult at times getting taken seriously as a man who writes straight contemporary romance for a traditional publisher. There’s a prejudice attached to that with some readers and bloggers. People who have never read any of my books have assumed that being a man, I couldn’t possibly write about a believable relationship. It’s also gotten in the way when I’ve wanted to attend events like Rom-Cons. I was actually barred from one a few years ago because of my gender. 

S:  I suspect quite a few males use pen names for that very reason. However, we expect men to be able to deliver on romance, so it seems disingenuous to say they aren't capable of writing about it.

What's the best advice you have ever given?

T:  I tell wannabes to grow a thick skin when it comes to criticism. Not everyone will like what you produce, and unfortunately, some people can be cruel with their opinions. The same advice applies to editors. I have more than 20 books out, and my editor still finds mistakes. The only time I get upset is if it’s something I should have caught myself. 

S:  What's the best advice you have ever been given?

T:  When you introduce a character, even a minor one, always include a brief physical description to give the reader something to visualize.

S:  Great advice! I find I can't connect with characters if I can't see them in my mind.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

T:  There have been a couple. One was being the keynote speaker at the Indianapolis Book Festival several years ago. The other was when I organized a book signing tour in the Florida Keys, where most of my stories take place. I’ve always had a nice following down there. When I walked into one of the stores where I was scheduled to appear, I saw my books alongside those of some Florida authors whose work I admire. I thought “Smith, you have arrived!”  

S:   Wow, that must have been a terrific feeling!

Tim, thanks so much for joining me today! If you would like to learn more about Tim and his books, please visit--

Next week in The Loft:  Author Denise Wheatley!