Please Welcome Guest Blogger Bonnie Paulson to the blog!

on December 21, 2012

Hi everyone!  Happy Holiday Season!  Today (if the world didn’t end), I asked my good friend, Bonnie Paulson, to talk about zombies.  Enjoy!  🙂

Bonnie Paulson pictureThe Mayans Didn’t Get You… My Zombies Will…

Who isn’t talking about some kind of apocalypse these days? Like a delicious rumor making its rounds on the gossip mill. The incomplete Mayan calendar foretold today is the day for the end of the world *cue doom music*.

Welp! You’re reading this post which means they’re wrong, right? Unless it has posted to an empty world at which this is a huge waste of time… or the perfect opportunity to get some confessions off my chest – but I digress.

Oooh! Or maybe the zombie virus has been successfully created and the exponential contraction will culminate at midnight tonight. That might work. Especially if the zombies make it quick and painless (yeah, right).

Barely AliveWhat are your plans for the last day on earth? I wish I could say I had ah-mazing plans, but I’m the one who worked on the eve of Y2K while the rest of the world partied and stressed. I’ll probably hang with my kids and work on Christmas projects like fudge and cookies.

Now there’s an event worth thinking about. Christmas. How will you spend it? I hope with family and friends. Because the apocalypse will come or not, but Christmas is next week and you don’t want to waste the chance to make terrific memories – even if they have nothing to do with running from zombies or trying to carve out a new calendar.

Falling ApartAnd an aside, for those of you who have been lucky enough to meet Rebecca Zanetti, you know what I know – how sweet she is and how generous. We had a family situation a few weeks ago and she sent me flowers. So the apocalypse can come and go, but I’ve got me some lilies and roses to carry me through with the kids and apparently soon I’ll have fudge… Lemon fudge.

*light bulb* I never share my recipes, but since the world has ended, it’s not technically sharing, is it? Okay, here is my recipe for lemon fudge and it takes less than 10 minutes and needs 5 ingredients. Easy. Ready?

Lemon Cake Batter Fudge

  • 1 cup lemon cake mix (box – NOT with pudding in the mix – will never set)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
  • ¼ milk
  • ½ stick butter (1/2 cup)
  • White chocolate chips

Directions: Mix dry ingredients. Add milk and butter DO NOT MIX. Put in microwave for 2 minutes. Pull out and immediately stir until the consistency is like that of cake batter. Put in greased bread pan, smooth. Top with white chocolate chips and put in fridge. After it’s set, cut up and EAT.

Now that’s how to end the world… with Lemon Fudge. Add a good book and the world might wait for you.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Mostly DeadBIO: Bonnie R. Paulson mixes her science and medical background with reality and possibilities to make even myths seem likely and give every romance the genetic strength to survive. Bonnie has discovered a dark and twisty turn in her writing that she hopes you enjoy as much as she has enjoyed uncovering it. Dirt biking with her family in the Northwest keeps her sane.

Links:

LINKS to FIND Bonnie’s Books on AMAZON

LINKS to FIND Bonnie’s Books on Barnes and Noble

Carina Press Author Bonnie Paulson is giving away a book!

on July 19, 2011

UPDATE:  Congrats to Maw25 for winning the copy of BREATHE AGAIN!  Bonnie will contact you with details. 🙂

!I’d like to welcome my friend, Bonnie R. Paulson, whose book BREATHE AGAIN will be released next month by Carina Press.  I asked Bonnie to blog a bit about emotion in contemporary romances.

I’d love to give away a copy of BREATHE AGAIN to one commenter today–there’s a question at the end, but you can comment on anything you want.

Romantic suspense and paranormal romances own a level of intensity to their emotions. Dark, deep, dramatic feelings with highs and lows and rare in-betweens pushed with urgency and fear.

Contemporary romances have the capabilities of exploring the subtle nuances of growing love among responsibilities, day-to-day difficulties and modern conveniences without the drama of fangs, claws or mind-reading (which I’ll be the first to admit I like a bite here and there).

World-building is important in the contemporary style but word count can be used more for scene building since the reader already understands the rules and idiosyncrasies of the time period. Plus, the laws of physics aren’t altered, so we don’t have to worry about the hero sucking her neck for sustenance, instead for pleasure – hello! And the heroine is strong but not enough to break a telephone pole in half. Characters are easier to identify
with… although let’s be honest. I ripped apart a telephone pole last week and no one, not one person, was impressed. I guess it’s been done.

There are still rules in contemporaries. You don’t want to read a book where the heroine sleeps with everything male. Too much sluttiness makes it hard to believe the sexual relation with the hero is special. And the hero doesn’t want to be too roughly physical because then wouldn’t he be physical with her or in jail all the time? And, let’s face it, wooing the heroine is difficult when he’s strapped to anger management classes.

My favorite aspect of contemporaries is the chance to take a controversial subject, spin it and then make my characters live it. Maggie deals with suicide in Breathe Again.

Breathe Again will be released August 22, 2011 from Carina Press.

Maggie Lachlan is struggling to get over the death of her husband. After being overcome by emotion during a shift in the E.R., she’s suspended indefinitely. Making things worse, she needs a place to stay after the quick sale of the house she shared with her late husband.

Fortunately, her friend, Ryan Stewart, offers her a room while she gets her life in order, much to the chagrin of his brother and housemate, Brodan Steele. Brodan doesn’t want to like Maggie, not when he questions Ryan’s feelings for her.. But it’s hard to deny the attraction he feels for her when she’s sleeping under the same roof.

Being so close to Brodan awakens something in Maggie, something she never felt during her marriage. But as long as she’s haunted by the past, she can’t open herself up to the future… 

Excerpt:  

I remembered my promise to stay away. Kneeling beside the pool spotted with lily pads, I pressed my fingers into the soft ground beside the mirror surface. Numerous large fish colored with brilliant orange, white and black highlights shimmered under the water. Lazy swimmers, the beautiful creatures hid in the shadows of the random leaves, the sparkling afternoon light finding their gliding bodies in the dark.

Watching the fish, I avoided being the first to speak. Why waste my time getting familiar when I planned to distance myself the first chance I got? I bit back a laugh. Not that I’d get the opportunity while I joined him on walks to sweet
settings.

My hair escaped again from the ponytail and fell past my shoulder. I pushed the mass behind my back.

“You’re part Irish, right?” Brodan’s deep voice fit in with the outdoor surroundings, rumbly and rugged.

“Yep. How’d you guess?” I smiled, lightening the sting my words could bring.

“Your mom or dad?” He stretched his legs out, crossing them at the ankles and relaxing his arm along the backrest.

“Dad.” I stood, feeling mulish for not sitting beside him. Wandering around the water, I asked, “Brodan sounds Irish. Can you claim the luck?”

“Not a lot. Dad drank Guinness, does that count?”

Humor between us, how odd. A few steps and I was beside him, attempting nonchalance.

We sat together, studying the man-made scenery, the silence long yet somewhat comfortable. A fish surfaced, poking its mouth into the air only to disappear into the shadows once more.

“I don’t want to like you, you know?” His quiet voice shattered the calm with more impact than a scream.

My favorite part of writing Breathe Again would be the fight Brodan and Maggie put up against the attraction between them. Sometimes I would laugh and call them both idiots
as I wrote. Other times, I would actually tear up a bit – no one thinks true loves should be apart. 

I was pregnant when I wrote it and tears came easily, but writing a scene at the end, outside the hospital, tore me up, even more than the Allstate commercials I’d been watching.

When you read a novel do you enjoy sad parts throughout or do they create bitterness toward the author?

Thank you so much to Rebecca for allowing me to swing by today. I would like to offer up a digital copy of Breathe Again for a randomly selected commenter today. Thank you again and I look forward to hearing what everyone thinks about Brodan. 

BIO:  Inland Northwest bred, Bonnie has a degree in radiology technology as well as multiple experiences in the medical industry. Four children and a terrific husband ground her as they rev around the countryside on their dirt bikes. Food, reading/writing romances and family make up just a small percentage of her favorite things. 

So yeah, I like Mac N Cheese…

on February 17, 2011

Hi all!  I’m over at Bonnie Paulson’s blog today admitting everything.  AND giving away a copy of FATED.  I have to admit, my copies are going fast, so only a few giveaways left.  Drop by and leave a comment!  🙂

Interview with Carina Author Bonnie Paulson

on February 7, 2011

Hi all!  Today I interviewed my friend Bonnie Paulson, who writes for Carina Press.  Bonnie and I are in a local critique group together called Sassy Scribes, which is a group of writers from the Pacific Northwest who also blog together.  So, I’d like to welcome Bonnie to the blog today!

1)      Congratulations on your sale to Carina Press!  Tell us a bit about your book.

Thanks so much! I’m very excited!  Maggie, widowed by suicide, fights attraction to Brodan and faces his brother’s fatal disease.  Can love heal what loss destroyed?

I got the idea from this book walking down to a trauma in Deaconess ER. The technologist I was with had lost her son the same way and she turned around. I wrote the first scene that day.

2)      What do you like better:  when you’ve just started writing a book or when you’ve just finished one, and why?

OOOHH!! Great question. I like starting the book the best.  But on the other hand, nothing feels quite as solid as wrapping up the story and typing The END. 

3)      Your current sale is a contemporary romance.  Do you plan to stay in this genre or do you see yourself writing in more than one genre? 

Carina Press acquired my contemporary romance (sweet) for release this August. I write both romantic suspense and contemporary. I think, for now, I’ll stay with these two subgenres. I’ve always read historical and paranormal but, let’s face it, to read a historical/paranormal versus researching and writing one are two ENTIRELY different things – one requires the love of the story and the other requires huge kahonas!

4)      What’s next for you?

My next manuscript I turned in to my agent is a romantic suspense, Broken Choices, and my current work-in-progress is a contemporary romance with a fun premise.  Just keep revving it on is my motto.

5)      If you weren’t an author, what career path would you choose?

Actually, I have two degrees, one of which is as a Radiologic Technologist.  I’d probably head back in the direction of the medical field if writing suddenly turned on me.

6)      How long did you submit work before being accepted by a publisher? 

It was less than three months.  But the call started a terrific two days.  This past November (the 4th and 5th to be exact) on a Thursday, I had just settled three of my four kids down for afternoon naps. Naptime is my writing time – literally only get three to four hours a day of this diamond time and there aren’t a lot of things I consider “worthy” enough to take away from it – this includes phone calls.

 

Most of my friends and family know this. So when the phone rang and the number was uber weird, I rolled my eyes and almost didn’t answer it.  But something told me to. So I answered – annoyed.

“Hello?”

“Hello, is Bonnie Paulson there, please?”  Very sweet voice, but way-too-professional.  Lady had to be selling insurance – only insurance salespeople are that nice on the phone.

“This is.” Another eye roll, extremely curt.

“Hi Bonnie, This is Angela James from Carina Press,” yes, you read right! “I’m calling about your manuscript Whispers of Me that you submitted.” 

“Uh huh.” Great, what’d I do?  Horribly offend someone?  Send in a virus that corrupted the entire Harlequin database?  Did I somehow and very unwittingly, but albeit totally me do something to upset someone?

“You did submit this, correct?”

“Uh huh.”  And this where I’m sure Ms. James had to think she’d gotten a loony bin on the phone. 

“Well, Mallory, one of our editors, read it, really liked it and suggested it go to acquisitions. I’d like to offer you a contract.”  Or something to that effect.  I honestly can’t remember past Mallory really liked it. I do remember saying the next line because Ms. James tweeted about it and it was very hilarious – hindsight and all that, you know.

“I think I’m going to throw up.” Me, very serious and truth be told, I’d had a hot dog for lunch and this I do not suggest!  But in my defense, I hadn’t thought I’d hear from anyone by phone – in fact assumed most things happened over email.  Anyway, back to the throwing up. 

“Okay, don’t throw up. You can cry, I’ve had people cry, but don’t throw up.”  Wow, she was so nice – and tolerant!

“I’m not the crying type, throw-up, okay, crying, not so much.”  Was I seriously debating what action to take with THE Angela James?  I was loony. 

The rest I don’t remember.  I remember floating and wanting to basically dive into some tiramisu or coconut cake but I called my writing friend first and we talked FOREVER about it.  The next morning I took that offer and contacted an agent I’d been eyeing for almost three years and signed with her.  November 4th and 5th were great days – oh, and the baby got his first tooth that day too (surprised I noticed, to be honest).

 

7)      I know you donate a lot of your time to judging contests.  Based on what you’ve seen this last year, is there any advice you have for new writers?

This is a funny question because I still consider myself new! From the contests though, I’d say work on your manuscript more than just getting it into the word processor.  More often than not, the style and quality of the writing is what grabs low scores for contestants. You need to approach a contest like approaching an agent or an editor. POLISH. And when you’ve reached the fifth edit and you feel it’s perfect, have a critique partner look at it and revise again. (I love my CPs! And CG)

8)      What’s one question you’ve never been asked yet you’d like to answer?

How do you eat your pizza?  Any toppings and I rip them and the cheese off first to eat then push the sauce to the crust and eat that. Yeah, I’m weird but it’s so good! 

P.S. Thank you so much, Rebecca, for having me. I’m so excited for the next book in your series to come out.  I loved and I mean LOVED Fated. Congratulations again!

Oh, and four-strokes rule!  (Bon is an AVID dirt biker!)

If you want to find Bonnie on the web, here’s her site:  http://brpaulson.blogspot.com/

FATED releases this month!

on January 31, 2011

So, the time has come.  Tomorrow is February and FATED will be released on the 22nd.  I’m excited and a bit nervous.  Being compulsive, I googled my name and reviews are popping up all over…and Target is carrying the book.  Who knew?  I thought FATED would only be at book stores until (and if) it goes mass market…then it goes to Target.  Shows what I know!

This month I’m blogging and being interviewed all over the place – if you look to the schedule over to the right, you can see where I’ll be.  On several of those places we’ll be giving away a signed copy of FATED, among others.

For my blog this month, I thought I’d bring in some of the experts and talk about books.  Here’s the schedule:

** 2/2/11 ** Interview with the mult-talented Cynthia Eden about writing for two publishers and why the darkness appeals to us all.

** 2/7/11 ** Interview with the amazing Bonnie R. Paulson about her new sale to Carina Press and how she manages to get it all done.

** 2/10/11 ** Interview with my excellent critique partner Sayde Grace, who writes about sexy cowboys and dangerous werewolves…for different publishers.

** 2/12/11 **  Valentine Blog Hop – win lots of prizes and books if you take the whole hop.

** 2/16/11 ** Interview with the fabulous Megan Records from Kensington Publishing…what did she buy last year and what’s she looking for now?

** 2/22/11 **  RELEASE DATE FOR FATED