THE WRITER'S 12 STEP PROGRAM
How to Stay Inspired to Write
By Michele Vail Bardsley
When: February 11th – February 22nd
Where: Online List (You will be subscribed after payment is received.)
Cost: Workshop is $20; or purchase materials only for $10; download
handout for free!
FMI: http://www.geocitie s.com/michelebar dsley/writers12s tep.html
Instructor: Michele Bardsley is the nationally bestselling author of
Because Your Vampire Said So and Fantasyland. She writes paranormal
and erotic fiction for New American Library, Changeling Press, and
Ellora's Cave. She's presented workshops at numerous conferences and
online venues, included the Romantic Times Convention, Celebrate
Romance, Oklahoma Writers' Federation, Inc., and Florida Writers
Workshop: In ten days and in twelve steps, you will learn how to be
more creative and productive. This workshop will show you how to work
through whatever's blocking you from reaching your writing goals. At
the end of the program, you'll have the tools you need to reach your
GOOD NEWS! One participating student will win a 25-page critique from
instructor Michele Bardsley and an autographed ARC of her third
vampire mom novel, Because Your Vampire Said So (May 2008). Winner
will be chosen by random drawing. Note: Only participants in the
workshop qualify for the drawing. Thanks!
http://www.geocitie s.com/michelebar dsley/writers12s tep.html
Friday, January 25, 2008
THE WRITER'S 12 STEP PROGRAM
Posted by Amy S. at 5:19 PM
Saturday, January 05, 2008
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to Caffey! You have one week to email me at email@example.com . Congrats!
Posted by Amy S. at 8:01 AM
Friday, January 04, 2008
Douglas, Duke of Ethingham, was every matchmaking mama’s dream come true and nightmare rolled into one delectable package. Cicely had always thought him attractive, although she’d only observed him from a comfortable distance. Since the familial connection between he and Colleen had been revealed, he’d become a regular fixture at the Penwyth townhouse and estate. Cicely and he had become acquaintances of a sort. He rescued her from being a wallflower. She saved him from debutantes and mamas.
She watched him walk through the crowded ballroom, the candlelight caressing his sculpted facial features. From where she stood, his eyes looked ordinary grey. But, she knew about the hint of blue around the iris of his eye and the way it lightened even more when he laughed. Her heart skipped a beat as he headed in her direction.
“You would think he would have been caught by someone by now.”
Cicely jumped, startled by the familiar faint whisper in her right ear, then looked over her shoulder at her aunt Victoria. Petite, yet rounded, Victoria was still the beauty she had been in her youth. While fine lines around most ladies’ eyes would make them appear older, it just added character to Victoria’s face.
They were much the same height, yet Cicely always felt like an elephant next to her. She turned back around but realized she’d lost sight of Douglas. Disappointed, she gave her attention back to her aunt, an empty feeling lining her gut. He had seen her. She knew it. But, he’d seen something better. She tried to push the negative thoughts from her mind and focus on her aunt.
“I have a feeling that His Grace will not be caught unless he wants to be caught.”
Victoria laughed and stepped forward to stand beside Cicely. “That much we agree. Still, he is getting to the point where he should think about putting up a nursery. He is the end of his line. Well, the only one worth anything anyway. I know there is a cousin or two somewhere, but rumor is they are as ghastly as his father and grandfather.”
Something cold slithered into Cicely’s stomach and settled there. Not from her aunt’s description of Douglas’ extended family, butJH rather from the thought of him with another woman. She knew he had to marry, though she had hoped it would not be so soon. At least not until after he helped her with her plan. Okay, really never. If he did have to wed, sharing one memorable night with him would be enough for her to endure whatever simpering fool he married.
She cleared her throat delicately. “His Grace has said before he does not intend to marry for some time.”
When Victoria didn’t respond, Cicely glanced at her. A mysterious smile played about her aunt’s lips.
“You know what they say, Cicely. The right woman could make any man change his mind.”
She doubted any woman would change the duke’s mind, but she nodded just to agree and get the conversation moving. Knowing that this would probably disintegrate into another discussion on her lack of beaus, something that apparently confused her aunt, Cicely decided to change the subject.
“Did I tell you about the diary I found today at the bookstore?”
Victoria gave her a knowing look but said nothing about her lack of tact. “No, you didn’t.”
“It was quite amazing I found it because it was buried at the bottom of a crate. The proprietor told me he’d bought it at some estate sale.”
“Really?” Victoria’s attention had now turned back to the dancers on the floor, but Cicely knew that her aunt had a habit of keeping one eye on her surroundings and her ear to the conversation.
“It is more an accounting than a personal diary. I am not sure what it means or if it is real. But it seems that one of five men kept a diary while they conspired against the throne about the time of the Terror. I have no idea from where they came, but I think they may be very significant.”
The first strains of a waltz sounded before Victoria could answer. Cicely really hated this dance. While she sometimes had requests for country dances from various cousins and gentlemen she knew from The Historical Society, she rarely was asked to waltz.
She glanced over her shoulder to find Douglas standing to her left, a smile curving his beautiful lips. Curling her toes into her slippers, she told her heart to stop doing flip-flops. All she could do was stare at him. His wavy dark hair never seemed to stay in place, yet always looked tidy. The mischievous twinkle in his eye sent heat racing up her spine. A few murmurs reached her and brought her out of her stupor. It was then she realized her faux pas. Flushing, she curtsied.
He took her offered hand and waited for her to rise before asking, “Would you honor me with this dance?”
She didn’t pretend not to hear the whispers growing louder. Accustomed to them or not, they were still disturbing. Regardless, she held her head high and looked him right in the eye. “I would be delighted to dance with you, Your Grace.”
He led her out to the dance floor and within moments they were whirling with the other dancers. The feel of his strong hand providing gentle pressure on her waist, his body close to hers made her head spin. The heat of him warmed her front, though she tried not to think about it. Her body already tingled, and she knew from experience she lost all thought when that happened.
“I owe you a world of thanks, Lady Cicely.” He smiled down at her, a genuine smile because the man thought she was no threat to his bachelorhood. And she wasn’t. She didn’t want marriage, but she did want him. “Lady Sara has been after me since I walked in the door and I shudder to think what would happen if I had to dance with her.”
She tried not to laugh, but she couldn’t help it. “You should be ashamed of yourself, Your Grace. She cannot help it that she can’t dance.”
“I danced with her last week and my feet will never be the same. Who would have thought such a small woman could inflict that much pain?” He shook his head and chuckled, clearly amused with himself. “So I am serious when I tell you I owe you a boon.”
This was almost too good to be true. “You will grant me a favor in return?”
He nodded and expertly twirled them around a slower couple. She licked her lips and numbly followed his lead. Truthfully, she knew he thought nothing of the offer. In Douglas’ mind, she was sure he assumed she might ask for a ride in the park, or the use of his box at the theater. This had been handed to her on her silver dancing card.
He leaned closer to hear her. She normally didn’t speak that loud, but with the sound of the orchestra, not to mention the fact she was out of breath from dancing, she understood he was having problems hearing her.
“I call in your boon. I do have a favor to ask of you.”
Nodding, he straightened and again twirled her around. “Ask and you shall receive.”
“I was wondering, if you wouldn’t mind, would you teach me how to seduce a man.”
Please send answers to firstname.lastname@example.org . I will post the winner tomorrow. Prize is a print copy of The Accidental Countess. If you post or do the hunt, you are stating that you are over 18. You will need to check back tomorrow to see if you are the winner. Winner has one week to contact me or I will do a redraw. All answers can be found at http://www.melissaschroeder.net .
Name one series, any genre that Melissa has out.
Name three books that are coming soon, and their genre.
What military service is Melissa's husband in and what is his rank?
Posted by Amy S. at 9:03 AM
What has inspired you to become a writer? Does the same thing inspire you when you write a new book? Hmm, I think it was reading that first got me to thinking about writing. I was in the 8th grade then, and all I could think was I want to do that. Then, in college, I took creative writing and bounced around from genre to genre for several years. The next BIG "I can do that moment" was reading a book. Now, though, it is characters more than anything else that inspire me. They are constantly vying for their moment, begging for attention. Cynthia from A Little Harmless Pleasure bothered me for close to a year before I wrote the book.
Can you tell us about your current release or soon to be releases?
My current digital release is The Seduction of Widow McEwan from
My current print release is Lessons in Seduction, from . It is book two of my Once Upon an Accident historical series. Cicely, cousin of Sebastian in The Accidental Countess, had a not so happy ending in that book but thanks to Colleen's(the heroine from the first book) Douglas, Cicely gets a great ending in this one. She's a bit of a mouse, who lived in the shadow of a nasty mother and a father who didn't care for anything other than gambling. Even with a nice dowry from Sebastian, she hasn't had any luck. She realizes there will be no marriage, but she refuses to die a virgin. So, she propositions Douglas, on a ballroom floor during a waltz no less. There is also a bit of murder and mayhem thrown in the mix when she discovers a diary from the last century that tells of a group of noblemen who plotted to overthrow the British Monarch.
The next few releases I have are, A Little Harmless Pleasure, a rerelease from . It is a vastly different book from the one that was previously released, much longer and I think ten times better, thanks to my editor Sasha Knight. Then, I have It's a Party Anthology, an anniversary anthology from WCP Torrid, and , my first release from Ellora's Cave, a rerelease of Seducing the Saint, that has added scenes in it., part of the Leather and Lace Anthology with Becka Goings and Beth Williamson. Seth is a younger man whose been in love with Jamie for years, but when her brother tells Seth that she might be getting remarried, he pulls out all the stops to convince her of his love. I am really excited about it because it is my first western, and I hope to write more.
How long did it take for your first book to be release? I seriously wrote for two-two and a half years--what they call writing for publication--for about 2-2.5 years before I was contracted in 2004.
When it comes to writing a new story do you do any research? Depends on the book. Sometimes, it covers subjects I already know. Even though I have a degree in history, I always have to do some research before I write. The Spy Who Loved Her, the third Once Upon an Accident Series, will be set right before Napoleaon escaped Elba, so I have to brush up on the facts of that one. For my contemporaries, well, it depends on what is going on in the book. I have one I am writing called Conquering that takes place in , where I live for the moment. The heroes live in one of the newer fancy apartments with a view of the River Walk, so I had to do a bit of research there. So, even little things like that will get you researching. I even took a boat ride on the river walk to help me with The Seduction of Widow McEwan because they do talk about the historical landmarks along the way. And, being a history nerd, I have to be careful not to get all caught up in the research and forget to write the story.
Does your family read your books? I know my mom has read a few and I've heard a few of my aunts and cousins have. Other than that, I have no idea. My husband has read a few, and I always gain readers from his coworkers wherever we are stationed.
When you are not writing what are you doing? Reading, cooking, watching movies. When my youngest started full time in school this year, I ended up with a lot more time on my hands, thank goodness, so I am making up for lost time with them.
If you had one superpower, what would it be? Invisibility for when I want to curl up in read. So I guess I would be the Invisible Reader! I love to read, of course, but with deadlines, kids, and military lifestyle, I often don't get enough time to read, or what I think is enough, lol. So, if when I wanted to read, if I could just be invisible, that would be grand!
Later today, I will put an excerpt up and a scavenger hunt up for a prize. So come back later today for the great excerpt and the hunt. And today is Melissa's birthday so Happy Birthday Melissa! Hope it's a great one!
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