Friday, April 26, 2013


The term cutting room floor is used in the film industry as a figure of speech referring to unused film footage not included in the finished film. Many of the edited scenes were kept in cases, numbered and titled just in case they were needed later. Of course with the use of computers, scenes are no longer literally snipped and spliced onto a film but the edited scenes are still saved and many times become special outtakes or bloopers for DVDs. Today, author's can do the same with throwaway scenes that have been edited from the finished book. Many put them up on their websites. 
My guest, romance author Ashlyn Chase, discusses another use for throwaway scenes when starting a book, or in this case, a new series. 

Sometimes in order for writers to get to know their characters or get a feel for the overall conflict, they write a throwaway scene…a scene usually consisting of backstory that never makes it into the book. I haven’t done it often, but I found it helpful when beginning this series.

One of my most colorful characters is Mother Nature—head of the supernatural council. The council’s acronym is G.A.I.A. which stands for Gods And Immortals Association. Because of her snarky dialog, she may seem like an antagonist, but she’s really on the side of humans and paranormals alike. Like many a tough taskmaster, she’s simply trying to keep unruly characters in line.

I thought you might enjoy a glimpse from the editing floor…so to speak.

Mother Nature paced with her hands behind her back. She whirled on Mr. Balog and narrowed her eyes.

“You’re sure he’s a vampire and he’s opened a bar for all paranormals?”

“That’s the intel I’ve gathered.”

“Hmph. I cannot think of a stupider idea. Can you Balog?”

“No, Ma’am.”

She balled her fists. “What have I told you about calling me Ma’am?”

He bowed and stepped back. “My apologies, Gaia, er, Goddess.”

“That’s right. Gaia or Goddess. I may be older than dirt, but you don’t have to rub it in my face by calling me Ma’am.”

“I’m sorry.”

Gaia folded her arms. “Apology accepted. Now what are we going to do about this bar? Before the Werewolves and Vampires have a pissing contest in front of the humans.”

“Pissing contest? Do you really think they’d—”

“Gaaah! It’s an expression, you dimwit. Get with the lingo of your adopted land. Do you think I brought you over from Romania for nothing?”

“Yes, Goddess. I mean, no, Goddess. I mean…”

She waved away his confusion. “The paranormal beings must never reveal their supernatural status to humans. That’s the only thing I demand of them.” She threw her hands in the air. “Are you sure you’ve made that abundantly clear down there?”

“Yes, Gaia.”

She sighed. “Fine. Try to talk that vampire out of his ridiculous plan.”

“Yes, Ma—I mean, Gaia.”

She narrowed her eyes at him again and he stood stiffly, trying not to do anything to anger the powerful Goddess.

At last she seemed satisfied. “All right. You have your orders. Now get out of my office building.”

With a wave of her hand, Balog found himself in the elevator, moments before the doors opened onto the fake lobby.

  • As a writer:  Do you write throwaway scenes to help define your characters or story?
  • As a reader: Do you enjoy reading editing outtake scenes from your favorite authors?


AmazonBarnes and NobleIndieBound,Chapters/Indigo

Never Cry Werewolf…

Brandee has been dumped in every way possible, but by text is the last straw. That's it—she's officially done with men. Unfortunately, she's just been told her "soul mate" is the drool-worthy hottie all her friends call One-Night Nick.

Nick has been searching for true love for one hundred years. After all, werewolves mate for life, and he does not want to mess this up. As soon as he kisses Brandee, he knows she's the one. But how will he convince a woman who knows nothing of paranormals that she's about to be bound to a werewolf forever?

“A wonderful start to a very lighthearted series...” —Night Owl Reviews, 4.5 Stars, Reviewer Top Pick


A multi-published eBook author, Ashlyn Chase specializes in characters who reinvent themselves, having reinvented herself numerous times. She has worked as a psychiatric nurse, and for the Red Cross, and has a degree in behavioral sciences. She lives with her true-life hero husband in beautiful New Hampshire. The next book in the Flirting with Fangs Series, How to Date a Dragon, will be in stores in September 2013. For more information, please visit Ashlyn's WEBSITE, her Facebook Page and on Twitter 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


My guest is historical paranormal author, Brooklyn Ann. Her topic is one that many writers have struggled with--being organized. How does one keep track of those great snippets of ideas that come to us a midnight-thirty when we're just falling asleep or organizing different story lines and the stray scene that pops into our head--usually when both hands are involved with something else. 

Organization, it’s a horrifying, mystifying word of which I can barely grasp the meaning. One thing I know for sure is that it’s a necessary evil.

One author friend has a notebook filled with story ideas. Another has spreadsheets and all sorts of things to organize everything from stories to workout schedules. Others focus on one project at a time with the tenacity of a bloodhound. And some just seem to wing it.

I long to be more organized, but my cluttered house and the toxic waste dump of my car's interior seem to indicate that I'll never be an orderly person. However, there is still a method to my madness. I do have a notebook, though no one but me will likely ever make sense of it. The pages contain everything from random scenes, quickly jotted notes indecipherable to all but myself, to do lists, rough synopses, etc.

A little more sensible are my files dedicated to each series I'm working on. I have one for my historical paranormal series, one for my New Adult paranormal series, one for my contemporary rock star novellas, and another for random ideas. Each time I have a new idea or a quick scene pop into my head, I do my best to put them in their corresponding file.

Little by little, each "project to be" becomes more detailed and clear. One or two are usually close to actual books. Some are the basic building blocks for a story. Most are still pretty fragmented and incoherent.

Crazy as it is, this method seems to work best for me. I am able to focus on whatever project needs the most attention as well as placate my muse by assuring him or her that a new idea will be addressed in the future.

However, things don't always work out and often I forget ideas before I can get them typed up. Especially when an idea comes when I'm trying to sleep. For that, I wish I had some device in which a notebook, pen, & flashlight are mounted on the wall by the bed w' chains so I can write them down and not worry about forgetting it in the morning.

  • How organized are you? What methods do you use to keep track of your projects?


Brooklyn Ann

London's Lord Vampire Has Problems

Dr. John Polidori's tale "The Vampyre" burst upon the Regency scene along with Mary Shelley's Frankenstein after that notorious weekend spent writing ghost stories with Lord Byron.

A vampire crazy broke out instantly in the haut ton.

Now Ian Ashton, the Lord Vampire of London, has to attend tedious balls, linger in front of mirrors, and eat lots of garlic in an attempt to quell the gossip.

If that weren't annoying enough, his neighbor, Angelica Winthrop has literary aspirations of her own and is sneaking into his house at night just to see what she can find.

Hungry, tired, and fed up, Ian is in no mood to humor his beautiful intruder...Excerpt


A lover of witty Regencies and dark paranormal romance, Brooklyn Ann combines the two in her new 
vampire series.

The former mechanic turned author lives with her family in Coeur d' Alene, Idaho. 

She can be found online at as well as on twitter and Facebook.

Monday, April 22, 2013


Scarlet Geraniums mean comforting or to give Comfort

I’m sure everyone, by now, has heard about the tragedy associated with the Boston Marathon. It saddens me to see such things happen. I feel sorrow when I see unnecessary death and destruction of human life, regardless of where it happens. I feel anger towards those who feel the death of innocent people is justified to showcase a cause or political agendas. They use fear and terror to try to force others to their will.

It’s bad enough to see people die in wars, but at least there most casualties are soldiers equipped to do battle on a battlefield—wherever it happens to be. Soldiers know, when they step into a war zone, they’re in a dangerous place where injury or death can happen in a moment. Precautions are taken by anyone near a war zone.

What do an eight-year-old and his six-year-old sister in the United States know about warfare, battles, and political agendas?  Not much. Neither they nor the 140 others injured when the bomb went off, were in a war zone and there was no war. It was a relatively safe place to be visiting with your family to cheer on the runners in the marathon. Vigilance was for your wallet or getting separated from your family, getting lost in the crowd and not for bombs.

Various terrorist groups, worldwide, have been waging war on innocent people for years. Bomb a subway station or put a bomb in a plane, attack a train, bomb an office building and make a splash in the news and then use it to call attention to some unfairness or injustice somewhere else in the world.  Congratulations. You’ve now made war on people who had nothing directly to do with whatever you perceive your slights or hurts to be. Oh wait. Logic isn’t on the agenda in your quest for vengeance. In your collective minds it’s all justified.

How very sad.