“I Write Erotic Love Scenes, Not Erotica!” – A Guide to Adding Heat to Your Book

How many times did I want to say that when my first book was published? I know, I know, it’s crazy, but the one thing I wanted my stories to be known for was not how great the love scenes were, but how great of a story was being told. Comments from reviewers have said it was hot, but not so much so that it would make you uncomfortable. Others have considered it tame, while others said they were blushing.

One thing I’ve learned since A Heart Not Easily Broken was published is this: sensuality and the degree of sex in a book is based on the reader.

Unless it’s in the genre of Erotica. The name says it all.

When I started writing, my goal was to avoid putting sex in my book, period. I mean hey, call me prude, but even though I enjoyed reading the elegant prose of a Nora Roberts love scene, I could in no way imagine myself writing it! I mean really, what if my husband picked it up and looked at me with a raised eyebrow, or what if my mom got a hold of it???? What would they think?

MH900440908Then I thought about it some more and realized, hey, I’ve got four kids and they didn’t get here by way of Immaculate Conception nor were they adopted. 🙂  Sex is a part of life and hey, I’m grown! So, I put on a pair of big girl panties, (or thong) and went where the characters want to go!!! To bed!

Now, if your shy or nervous about writing sex scenes, how do you achieve it without being cheesy, unrealistic, or stiff? (I swear no pun was intended in that line!)

Research.

Research can be done in various ways. (Okay, seriously, stop laughing!) Find books from your favorite authors. If there is sex in their stories, study the way it’s written. Is it technical? Do they get creative with words, allowing your imagination to run wild without calling out each position? Or do they write in a way that gets straight to the point? (Insert tab A into slot C = HURRAY!) What about the scene leaves you warm under the collar? Is it a scene you can’t help but read again, or does it bore you to the point of sleep? Make notes of what you would like to see in your books.

**Remember, it’s okay to take a peek into the bedroom without sitting down on the edge of the bed. Leading up to what’s going to happen and stopping, then picking up later is fine, too. Go with what you feel comfortable with! Never push yourself into writing more than you feel comfortable reading for the sake of trying to sell a book. A reader can tell a badly written scene, and like your lovers, the last thing you want a reader to do is laugh (unless of course there is something that happens that is meant to make the reader laugh). Once a lover of romance novels has invested time and grown emotionally connected to your characters and you introduce that ‘moment’ but don’t deliver in some satisfactory way, they may wonder why the characters are together in the first place and quickly lose interest in your novel. (I once had a reader say she liked Brian so much she couldn’t wait to ‘jump in bed’ with him, and once she had, she wasn’t disappointed!)**

Step outside your comfort zone.

If you’ve never read an erotic romance novel, pick one up and peruse the story. I’d never read an Erotic romance story until I read J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series. Two things I learned from that series:

1)      The men were hot, vulnerable no matter how tough they are, and when they made love, they experienced some deep emotions. Despite what you may think, sex wasn’t just sex.

2)      While the scenes were very well written, there were some terms I would never be comfortable using in describing certain acts or anatomy.

**From the creative prose of Nora Roberts to the front and center of J.R. Ward, two totally different styles, each dealing with the same subject matter. Where would I fit in? What did I want to write? And just how daring did I want to be???? Ask yourself these questions!**

Practice.

(Okay, so I gave up on avoiding puns when I started talking about research. 🙂 )

Once you’ve decided the lingo you want to use in your scene, you have to write it! Trust me, writing sex is not as easy as you’d like to think it is! It gets very technical. Just like writing description in a scene or what your character is experiencing on a day to day bases, it’s even more intense when dealing with the ‘moment’ that can either push your character forward in a new relationship, or throw a new obstacle in their path, depending on where the story is going. I once read a blog that said writing sex is like writing an action scene. In order for the reader to know what’s going on – who punched who, and what the punch felt like or where it landed – you have to map out the action, movement-by-movement. Okay, the couple isn’t fighting in the bedroom, but they are moving together in a sort of dance. It has to be described so the reader not only ‘sees’ it in their mind, they ‘feel’ it, as well. To achieve this, the five senses must be visited.

*Touch– the feel of their lover’s hands on their body, or the way their lover feels to them. Rough hands, soft hands, a slow caress, a grip of passion.

*Taste– the taste of wine recently consumed during a kiss.

*Sight– excitement from the exposure of naked flesh.

*Sound- music in the background, a gasp, satisfied sigh.

*Smell– candles, perfume, sweat; you see where I’m going, right?

**When in doubt of how a good scene should progress, watch a few movies. Notice how the kisses can start out slow as the camera pans down to what the actors bodies are doing? Where are the hands? How do their bodies touch? What is the response of the other party? Visualize your characters as if they are in a movie and write what you see. Sometimes its slow, sometimes it’s fueled by passion and rough. It’s all in where your characters head is at.**

M.J.’s Tips:

* Don’t be afraid to write what you feel. That’s what editing is for! If your scene comes across as pornographic the first time around, don’t worry! Get it on paper, then tame it down. Take out what you feel is too much for your genre or what you feel comfortable with writing. Get a friend to read it and have them tell you what they think. Listen to the feedback, then make the changes. Trust me, editing love scenes can be the hardest part of editing! It can take me a week to edit a love scene versus the time it takes to edit any other chapter!

* Avoid the technical terms found in your old high school biology book. Talk about a mood killer! Pick up that Thesaurus, get creative, and find something you think works best.

* Make sure it makes sense!!! In real life, you don’t start standing up, then end up on the bed without transitioning to that location. Remember to add movement! In a regular scene, your character isn’t chilling on the sofa, then the next minute he’s answering the door without there being a reason why he got up from the sofa to go to the door. The same applies to love scenes!

* Dialogue during the act itself can be good, but let’s be realistic; nobody wants to read a full conversation during the act. A command, a request, a moaned response, sure, but who wants to hear about the other characters day? Leave that for pillow talk!

* Character thoughts…Okay, I am not ashamed to admit, this is where my scenes start carrying the ‘erotica’ tag. My stories are written in 1st person which means you’re already deep inside their world. You know what makes them tick, why they act the way they do, and how they truly feel without being told about it in the traditional 3rd person point of view. So, when they are with the one they love or want, you’re going to know exactly how that kiss feels, how they react physically to their lovers touch, and so on and so forth. The only difference, I don’t start shouting out anatomy in a vulgar or textbook fashion.

* Never feel you have to have an unlimited amount of sex in your book! Make each scene count! I normally have three scenes in my stories, not counting encounters that are alluded to. For me, each encounter is an opportunity for the characters relationship to grow and add more to the story and not be a page filler.

So, how has my family responded since I published my books?

My husband says I write very well, and my mom…well, she read a Sunday Sample where the character mentions his…um…physical reaction to seeing the heroine for the first time. She called me and said, ‘What do you mean he was happy he was standing behind the counter?’ Since then, she has gotten copies of both of my books and I have told her once she reads them not to call. LOL!!! And I’m pretty sure she’s going to read this post and leave a comment. I love you, Mom!

Good luck with your writing, and remember, if you can’t feel comfortable writing it, don’t. Go with what you feel works best for you! And don’t worry, sometimes it is good to shut the door on the reader, just as long as you make it known the character is happy on the other side!

And of course, I can’t talk about writing a sex scene without sharing one of my own. Here’s a little sample of what goes on behind closed doors in A Heart Not Easily Broken:

Excerpt:

I slipped my fingers between us and quickly unfastened the buttons of his shirt. Of all days to decide to wear one of these. Why couldn’t he have on a pullover like always? A quick tug would have had his chest available to me in seconds. Now I had to work for it.

Buttons free, I forced the material over his shoulders and down to his wrists. He released me to help remove the shirt. In our haste, his wrists got tangled up. I bit my lip as I looked down at him. His eyes were the most intense shade of blue I’d ever seen. His mouth parted expectantly. His lips were swollen and pink from the way I’d sucked them. I wanted to own him. Every…last…inch.

A deep chuckle came from his throat. “What are you doing?” He tried to free his wrist.

“Don’t worry, I promise you’ll like it.” I smiled wickedly as I fisted the makeshift handcuffs, trapping his hands on the bed.

I nibbled, lapped, and sucked my way to his throat while Brian groaned.

He smelled so good, so male. Barbeque and beer mixed with his musky cologne that held a hint of sweetness. His scent had driven me crazy all night. I took my time to savor every detail of his bronzed flesh, tasting every inch I could reach. But it wasn’t enough. I lifted my head from his chest and teased him with my tongue, evading his mouth as he tried to capture mine.

He panted beneath me, his chest heaved in and out, but his eyes, those crystal blue orbs stayed on me. I was driving him crazy, and my time to be in control was running out. I was sure the moment his wrist were free, he would take me down and return the favor.

Perfect, because that was exactly what I wanted.

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Click here for more information about  my Bestselling novel, A Heart Not Easily Broken. 

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Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!  If you’ve enjoyed this post, sign up for the monthly newsletter by following this blog!

MJ

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#SampleSunday- A Heart Not Easily Broken- The Deleted Scene

Just like in the movies, books often have deleted scenes. Sometimes, no matter how much we love what we’ve written, an author is forced, (and I do mean forced!) to remove it for the sake of slowing the story down or telling too much information at the wrong time. One of my favorite deleted scenes is from Brian’s POV, and takes place before the start of Chapter One, the scene where Ebony notices Brian watching her from the stage. Chapter One tells you how Ebony saw that moment.

Have you ever wondered what Brian was thinking while watching her dance in the crowd?

Now’s your chance to find out! This scene is normally hidden in the links for Brian’s Musings, but I decided today would be a great day to share. Enjoy!

Deleted Scene: 

“Yo, Brian, where are you going, man? We don’t have a long break.”

I turned to face Derrick, Diverse Nation’s drummer, and my friend since college. “Did you see her? The woman in the little black dress?” My attention went back to the crowded dance floor. Even though we’d stopped playing, it was still packed. Bodies gyrating to the DJ’s choice of music continued to block my view.

“You’re kidding, right?”

I shot Derrick a momentary glance as I lifted the strap of my guitar from around my neck. I knew where this was about to go. Irritation flooded me.

“You’re talking about the black woman, right?” Derrick continued.

“Yeah. What’s your point?” I turned my back on him and focused on the dance floor. Which way did she go?

As if the heavens heard my question, strobe lights shot out into the club as the DJ shouted out the crowd, illuminating the woman who’d stolen my attention.

Long dark wavy hair rested on bare shoulders of a caramel body wrapped in a sheath of black.  The fabric clung to every curve of her voluptuous figure, wearing it like a second skin. The material stopped just below her hips; shapely thighs and amazing calves ended in a pair of open-toe heels.

My body’s response was automatic.

“Brian, man, don’t go there. I’m in no mood to stop a fight tonight.”

I locked on my target. “What are you talking about?”

“I’m talking about every last brother on the floor that’s jockin’ her. You make a move and someone’s gonna step to you and put you in your place.” Derrick blocked my path to the steps leading down from the stage, his hand resting on my shoulder. “I’ve got plans with my lady tonight. Spending the night in jail for keepin’ your ass out of trouble isn’t in the cards.”

My fist balled. I was sick and tired of everything coming down to race. Just because I was missing melanin in my skin didn’t mean I had no right to talk to a woman I was attracted to.

I shrugged off his grip and headed down the steps leading to the dance floor. My intention; follow the footsteps of the caramel vixen.

“I could care less about what anyone thinks, D. I can handle my own. I want her. Before the end of the night, she will be mine.”

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If you haven’t read the Bestselling novel, A Heart Not Easily Broken, follow this link to read Chapter One! Want to know more about the characters, Visit this link for Character Bios, Diary Post, and Interviews!

If you haven’t read the Amazon Bestseller, A Heart Not Easily Broken, buy your copy today! It’s $3.99 and available for Kindle, Nook, iTunes, and on Smashwords. If Paperback is what you prefer, find it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble! 

 AHNEB FINAL COVER

Ebony is a smart, sexy, career-oriented black woman who wants nothing more than a summer fling with a man who challenges her mind and body. What she doesn’t expect is a blond-haired, blue-eyed bass player—who won’t take “no” for an answer—to accept the challenge.

When Ebony’s attempt at a brief fling turns into more, despite negative reactions from friends and family, she finds juggling love, family, and career are nothing compared to the ultimate betrayal she endures. Now her dreams spiral into lies and secrets that threaten her future and her best friend’s trust.

ONE CLICK for REVIEWS, FREE CHAPTER READS, ALL SALES LINKS!

For more information on The Butterfly Memoirs Series and a sample of the next book, Jadedvisit this link! 

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Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!

MJ

About Me     Twitter     Facebook    Pinterest     Instagram  Google+      Goodreads     Linkedin     Email

This Writer’s Life…Update!!!

As an author, I must say, the past few weeks have been amazing and unbelievably busy! I remember a month ago looking at my calendar and stressing trying to figure out how to manage it all without running around like a chicken with my head cut off. Did I succeed?

Well….it all got done, and successfully I might add, but I couldn’t avoid the headless chicken! 🙂

So, what happened? Oh where to begin….

IMG_0695[1]The month of July was spent doing another world wind blog hop promotions tour for my first novel, A Heart Not Easily Broken, which is nearing its first publishing birthday next month! Can you believe it? It’s almost been a year since words that I wrote were published and shared with the world! And to this day, it is still on and off of the Amazon Bestsellers list after staying there and holding it’s own for six months straight!  I am happy to have written a story that not only entertains, it captures readers emotions and leaves them wanting more! Believe me, it was not an easy feat!

I also had the privilege of hosting a Writer’s Workshop at my local library where I shared my experiences and tips on how to handle the query process without losing your mind. I got great feedback from that workshop. I also wrote a blog about it to share with those of you who were unable to attend. You’ll find it here: A Guide to Landing a Publishing Contract the ‘Write’ Way.  Be sure to read the entire post and take advantage of the downloadable handouts attached to the blog.

I also had a lot of fun with several groups I am affiliated with on Facebook! This is the part that makes writing worth the hard work! First, there was the W.R.S.R.G. (Writer’s Review and Support Resource Group) book chat which gave readers and fellow authors a chance to get to know more about me, the author. I was able to share my experiences and go into depth about why I write and what inspired The Butterfly Memoirs series, as well as offer some of my favorite writing tips.

Next came hanging out with my friends on the B.R.A.B. (Building Relationships around Books). This is a fabulous group or readers and authors. I got ‘called out’ to participate in an Author DJ Book Battle. Crazy right? But a ton of fun! I went head to head with author Loretta R. Wells as we shared songs that either inspired our book or best represented the story or characters. The twist? We didn’t get to decide which book was used and the songs had to be at least ten years old. Talk about a mental work out! I’m happy to report I won! 🙂

***And here’s something that made my year: I have been selected as a finalist in the B.R.A.B. Book Awards in the categories of Best New Author and Breakout Author! I am honored to have been nominated with the other talented people in the categories. I’d love to have your support! To cast your vote, visit this link to see the nomination form, then email it in! I’ll report back once the winners have been announced!***

The biggest event of my writing career happened last week when I was featured by the lovely organization, The Virtuous Women. LLC, as they hosted their first annual Author Workshop that was co-hosted by Barnes & Noble. It was a wonderful experience, and I had the opportunity to meet such talented and record setting authors within the community. People such as Coach William “Buck” Godfrey, who not only has an outstanding career as a football coach with an amazing championship record, he’s also assisted many of his players to see their dream of attending college and playing for the NFL. He also has a a Masters in English and has published three books. To learn more about him, visit this link where you can find more information about his career. 

I also meet Mr. Coleman R. Seward. Mr. Seward is a Chemist who worked for the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and has received the highest award that position can achieve: the FDA Award of Merit. He has published over thirty scientific papers in leading national and international journals. His book, The Chemistry of Change and Growth is his memoir.

So, what is next for M.J. Kane?

A LOT!

I’m currently working on the third novel in The Butterfly Memoirs, Lonely Heart,  and will be announcing the publishing date in the next few months, so, stay tuned! I also have a few projects I’m holding close to the chest, but the moment I’m ready to share, believe me, your going to love it!

If your not already, be sure to follow my blog so you can get on my monthly newsletter email list. If you want updates on what’s happening with me or to be in line for private contest only to be offered to my newsletter followers, SIGN UP TODAY!!!  Also, if your a lover of all things social networking, I am now on Pinterest and Instagram!

Pinterest: There are four boards to chose from. There are quick links to current blog post as well as seeing what books I like or am reading. My favorite board of course is the one dedicated to The Butterfly Memoirs. Ever wondered how I ‘see’ Brian and Ebony, Yasmine and Zach, and Kaitlyn? Stop by and check it out!

Instagram: While I write the memoirs of my characters, I figured it would be fun to share my own pictorial memoir. Get instant updates of what is going on in M.J.’s World when I’m not writing, or when I am. Here’s your chance to get inside of MY head! Have fun!

Well, that’s it for now! I’ve got WORK TO DO!!!! Time is of the essence because the kids are back in school and my schedule is now written around drop offs and pick ups, making sure homework is done, and getting dinner cooked on time. So much for the days of lazy summer!

Now, if would only stop raining I would be so darn sleepy! 🙂

Happy Writing and Reading!

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Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!  If you’ve enjoyed this post, sign up for the monthly newsletter by following this blog!

MJ

About Me     Twitter     Facebook    Pinterest     Instagram  Google+      Goodreads     Linkedin     Email

Author Interview and Book Spotlight- M. J. Kane – Jaded (The Butterfly Memoirs)

One of the fun things about being an author is participating in ‘the interviews’. Each time is a chance to let you know a little bit more about myself or share the reasons why I wrote a certain character or story. Here is my latest interview with Roxy Wilson! Enjoy! Don’t forget to leave a comment and show the host some love! ❤

Author Interview and Book Spotlight- M. J. Kane – Jaded (The Butterfly Memoirs).

Time is Running Out! Don’t Miss Your Chance!

Yep, time is running out! A Heart Not Easily Broken will not be on sale after July 31st, so grab your copy today! Don’t forget to tell a friend, too!

 

If you haven’t read the Amazon Bestseller, A Heart Not Easily Broken, buy your copy today! It’s .99 cents and available for Kindle, Nook, iTunes, and on Smashwords. If Paperback is what you prefer, find it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble! 

AHNEB Sale with seal pic 450

Ebony is a smart, sexy, career-oriented black woman who wants nothing more than a summer fling with a man who challenges her mind and body. What she doesn’t expect is a blond-haired, blue-eyed bass player—who won’t take “no” for an answer—to accept the challenge.

When Ebony’s attempt at a brief fling turns into more, despite negative reactions from friends and family, she finds juggling love, family, and career are nothing compared to the ultimate betrayal she endures. Now her dreams spiral into lies and secrets that threaten her future and her best friend’s trust.

ONE CLICK for REVIEWS, FREE CHAPTER READS, ALL SALES LINKS!

For more information on The Butterfly Memoirs Series and a sample of the next book, Jadedvisit this link! 

#####

Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!

About Me     Twitter     Facebook    Pinterest     Google+      Goodreads     Linkedin     Email

“A True Romance For All”

That was how this reviewer titled her thoughts about A Heart Not Easily Broken on Amazon.

I love it when a reader is so touched by my stories that it takes more than just a few lines to say why they rated it as a 5-Star read…they write paragraphs!

This review is from an Amazon reader. Thank you, SexxyBlogger!

Review:

5.0 out of 5 stars A True Romance for All, July 21, 2013

This story was definitely worth the last minute purchase. I saw a review on Romance Novels in Color and just had to know why it was one of their top reads and now I do. M.J. Kane challenges you dear reader with this story of an interracial couple within the beginning of a romance that pretty much takes both the heroine/hero by surprise.

What challenge you ask? She challenges you not to just think about the normal things that go on within a new budding relationship, but she also challenges you to think about race…about how it can also affect a relationship. The Butterfly Memoirs is a trilogy….a compilation if you will…of stories about three roommates…friends. All of different racial backgrounds.

A Heart Not Easily Broken is Ebony’s story. Ebony is as the blurb states…she works and goes to school. She doesn’t have time for a full-time relationship, but she meets a man who gives her exactly what she wants. He challenges her mind and body…he respects her career choice. He listens and doesn’t judge. He is perfect…except he’s white and I mean blond hair, blue eyed white. Brian is the perfect man for Ebony…he is what she is looking for in a man should she want to take their relationship further. But growing up, she was always told that a educated black man is what she needs.

Brian…I want a Brian and me personally, I wouldn’t care if he was purple with pink polka-dots. But I do get where this author was coming from. I’ve known friends who were told the same thing…don’t bring no one home who can use my hair comb…things of that nature. Me…no, my family is very diverse. We have a little bit of everything going on in it. My mom always told me, I don’t care what he looks like, just as long as he make you happy. But it’s something to struggle with; constantly thinking what your family will think because you’re dating someone outside of your race.

Back to Brian. Brian grew up in a liberal family..it never mattered to his family who their son/brother brought home, just as long as the woman he decided to be with treated him right. Brian had issues before when he dated a black woman and it didn’t end so well. But it didn’t deter him, he wanted Ebony and the man I have to say was very persistent.

I liked how M.J switch this a little bit and didn’t make it so much as a issue of race on Brian’s side, but more on Ebony’s side. I thought that was key to this story because we always hear how a white person perceives race, but what about black folks..what do we really feel when our sons & daughters are dating outside of the race? Very powerful question. And even though Brian didn’t so much care about Ebony’s skin color, he was effected in a way because to her, he was not what she wanted in the beginning (mainly because he was white); so he did have to those little seeds of self doubt.

Finally after all is said and done…you would think M.J. would give us our HEA…right? No, she takes us to a place where no woman or couple wants to go. And its painful for both our protagonists…they both have to deal with the consequences of their decisions. A Heart Not Easily Broken had me on the edge of my seat at some parts and also had me questioning how I would approach a relationship with a man outside my race…as liberal as I am, would I not have the same questions and doubts as Ebony?

A lot of things come into play in A Heart Not Easily Broken, but it’s a story I think we can all relate too…if we’re honest enough with ourselves. I love the angst that M.J. Kane gives me…I love the absolute devotion and love these two characters have for one another despite the challenges they faced; good and bad…I dearly loved the HEA that M.J. gave me at the end. It reminds me that love truly really conquers all. No matter race, financial status, friend and/or family thoughts…it should truly be about how that person make you feel…safe, secure…happy.

This is one review that is longer than most. A lot goes into it…so I thank you Ms. Banks (Kane)  for giving me a tale that challenged me…one that had me questioning my own thoughts and feelings. Thank you for a tale of just not diversity, but one of true love and friendship.

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If you haven’t read the Amazon Bestseller, A Heart Not Easily Broken, buy your copy today! It’s .99 cents for a LIMITED TIME ONLY! Available for Kindle, Nook, iTunes, and on Smashwords. If Paperback is what you prefer, find it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble! 

 AHNEB Sale with seal pic 450

Ebony is a smart, sexy, career-oriented black woman who wants nothing more than a summer fling with a man who challenges her mind and body. What she doesn’t expect is a blond-haired, blue-eyed bass player—who won’t take “no” for an answer—to accept the challenge.

When Ebony’s attempt at a brief fling turns into more, despite negative reactions from friends and family, she finds juggling love, family, and career are nothing compared to the ultimate betrayal she endures. Now her dreams spiral into lies and secrets that threaten her future and her best friend’s trust.

ONE CLICK for REVIEWS, FREE CHAPTER READS, ALL SALES LINKS!

For more information on The Butterfly Memoirs Series and a sample of the next book, Jadedvisit this link! 

#####

Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!

MJ

About Me     Twitter     Facebook     Google+      Goodreads     Linkedin     Email

 

Here’s a little something to beat the Hump Day blues!

Wednesday, better known as Hump Day….the middle of the week, the day where the weekend is in site. My favorite commercial on TV is the one from Geico that features a camel walking around an office asking ever one what day it is. “HUMP D-AAY!!!” ROTFL, cracks me up every time!

Well, I decided to share a little hump day action with a snippet from Jaded. No, it’s not that type of ‘hump day’ action, (get those heads out of the gutter! :)), it is from the ‘hump’ spot in the story where the heroine, Yasmine Phillips,  true feelings are exposed. And just for the fun of it, there’s an ex-girlfriend involved!

Happy Reading!

Excerpt:

“Who is she?” Melissa spat.

Zack opened his mouth to reply, but I cut him off.

“I’m the woman who’s taking care of everything he needs.” My eyes cut to where her hand gripped Zack. “Get your hands off my man.” I allowed every ounce of hatred and jealousy to be evident in my voice.

Her eyes narrowed. “Excuse me?”

I walked over and stood next to Zack, ignoring the confused expression on his face. I looked down; Melissa’s hand hadn’t moved. I cocked an eyebrow and sucked my teeth.

She dropped her hand and stepped away without uttering a word.

I stood in front of Zack and staked my claim. “Now, if I heard right, he doesn’t want or need you.” Her perfect lips opened as if to argue. I stuck my manicured nail in her face. “If you want to keep that cheap lace front wig for the next man you want to seduce, keep your mouth shut and leave before it ends up on the floor.”

Melissa stared at me, then angled her head so she could see Zack. Since he stood behind me, I had no idea what expression was on his face. Whatever it was, it forced her mouth shut.

She smirked while studying me. “Well, Zack, I see you’ve found a little playmate. She must not be as good as me or else you wouldn’t have answered the door.”

“What the…oh hell no!” I reached out for that stupid wig, but she slipped out of my grasp and into the hallway. Zack grabbed my waist, drew me in the door, and kicked it shut.

I struggled out of his arms and straightened my shirt, fuming that she got the last word.

Zack stepped in front of me, his expression a mixture of shock and lust.

I stomped past him to the kitchen, buttoned my shirt, and stuffed my legs into my jeans.

He followed.

“What?” I snapped, glancing over my shoulder.

“Did you mean what you said?”

“Hell yes. If I had gotten a hold of her that wig was coming off.” Dressed again, my focus went to the simmering sauce on the stove. “I better not see her ass in the street—”

“No, not that…you said I was your man.”

I cringed on the inside, refusing to let him read my face. “It’s what she needed to hear.”

The weight of Zack’s silent stare behind me made my hands shake. Blurting out my feelings because of the random appearance of his ex-fiancée was not how I’d intended to convince him to stay in my life.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

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Autumn landscape

A devastating breakup leaves Yasmine Phillips in shambles. Unable to trust another man with her heart, she focuses on the one thing she can control—starting her own business.

When her computer crashes, taking months of hard work with it, she must rely on computer genius Zachariah Givens to save her. A complete opposite of men from her past, she doesn’t expect the passion that ensues. But just as she finds happiness, she learns the truth about the other women in Zachariah’s life.

 

Amazon      Barnes & Noble      iTunes     Smashwords     Paperback

***Read as a STAND-ALONE or as part of The Butterfly Memoirs series!***

Looking for Book 1? Follow this link to learn more about A Heart Not Easily Broken!

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Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!

MJ

About Me     Twitter     Facebook     Google+      Goodreads     Linkedin     Email

 

The Start of a New Relationship

Today I visited my good friend, and coffee aficionado, Synitha Williams, and share a snippet of my novel, A Heart Not Easily Broken, which is on sale this month for .99 cents!

 

The Start of a New Relationship.

#SampleSunday- Meeting the Family on the Fourth of July

Well it’s Sunday and I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July! In the spirit of the traditional holiday family barbecue, I’m sharing an extended scene from A Heart Not Easily Broken. This scene is from Brian’s point of view as he takes Ebony to meet his family for the first time. Ebony is nervous  because she is unsure how they will except the fact he’s dating a black woman. But as things go, someone in the family always have a funny story to tell!

Enjoy the sample, they BUY YOUR COPY TODAY for just .99 cents!!! LIMITED TIME ONLY!!!

Excerpt: 

“So this is where the party’s at.”

My family turned, startled at my voice. My mother got out of her seat.

“Brian!” She came over to hug me and kissed my cheek.

A chorus of ‘hellos’ came in response as all eyes left me to focus on my date.

“Hey, everybody, I’d like for you to meet Ebony Campbell. Ebony, this is my mother, Laura, and my father, Winfred.”

My mother shook her hand. Dad stayed at the grill, but smiled warmly and waved a pair of tongs.

“I made a cake,” Ebony said, holding it out to my mother.

“Oh, thank you. I’ll just put it in the kitchen.” Mom took the plate inside.

“This is my sister, Lisa, Cody and Hannah’s mother. And this crazy girl is Bridget.”

Both came to shake her hand. Ebony’s voice remained warm despite the fact she squeezed the heck out of my hand.

Lisa sat back down, but Bridget remained next to me, a wicked gleam in her eyes.

“Where is everybody? I see cars out front. Where are the bodies?”

“Andrea and Caroline went to the store to grab a few things. Tim and Randall are working so they’ll be late,” Bridget informed me while studying Ebony.

“Andrea and Caroline are my other sisters. Tim and Randall are their husbands,” I said, turning to Ebony to fill her in.

“Jackson is on the way with Josh and Sara. They went to pick up some fireworks. Aunt Gina and her boys should be here soon.”

I groaned. “Tell me Dad isn’t going to be in charge of lighting them again this year.”

“After last year’s fiasco? Hell no.” Bridget leaned around me and spoke to Ebony directly. “Last year, dad burned down the gazebo. He shot off a rocket that went sideways instead of up in the air, and poof,” she demonstrated with her hands, “instant fire.”

“Oh, no.” Ebony covered her mouth to conceal her laughter.

“Fortunately, Tim and Randall are both fire-fighters. They got it quickly under control.” I pointed to the gazebo’s remains. “He’s supposed to rebuild it, but Mom refuses to let him start until after tonight’s fireworks.”

Bridget’s contagious laughter kept Ebony from being able to continue to contain her own.

“Hey, are you kids talking about me over there?” my father bellowed.

“No,” Bridget and I said in unison.

“I might be getting older, but I’m not deaf. Brian, bring your lady friend over here.”

I winked at Ebony as we walked over to the stainless-steel giant we’d chipped in to buy him on Father’s Day. The savory smell of hot dogs, steak, and chicken permeated the air.

“Dinner looks great, Dad.”

“Me and this grill are a match made in heaven.” He took a moment to flip a row of steaks. “The kitchen is for the women. But this…” He pointed with pride to the grill. “This is man’s work. It’s like the caveman days of cooking over a pit fire.”

“Winfred, cavemen didn’t know how to make fire,” Mom said.

Everyone laughed.

“Look, woman, go grab me a beer,” Dad said. He glanced at Ebony. “So, you’re dating my son, huh?”

My heart dropped to my knees. I should have seen this coming. My dad had no problem getting to the point. We hadn’t been here for more than ten minutes and he’d already jumped to the wrong conclusion. Even though the sexual attraction was there, the only thing we’d done was kiss. I wanted more, damn, I really wanted more. But I didn’t want to push and risk the chance she’d decide we were doing too much. Bringing her to meet my family was more than I thought would ever happen. The last thing I needed my father to do was­

“Yes, sir, I am his girlfriend.” She squeezed my hand.

Holy. Shit. My heart started beating again. I studied Ebony to make sure I heard her correctly. Her smile said it all.

“How did you guys meet?” Mom reappeared with a beer.

“She picked me up at the bar,” I joked.

“Brian!” Ebony poked me in the ribs with her elbow.

Bridget laughed. “And he’s the only thing you could find? Girl, I have to take you out sometime and show you where to find a real man.”

“Ignore her, she’s got a few screws loose,” I warned.

Ebony giggled. “I like her.”

Annoyed, I decided to mess with my sister. “So, Bridget, what happened to the last guy you dated? What was his name, Raul? Wasn’t he like twelve years younger than you?”

Bridget’s eyes shot over to our mother who eyed her questioningly. “His name was Francisco, and he was not twelve years younger.” She held her head high. “He was five years younger. I broke up with him a few months ago because we couldn’t agree on the terms of our relationship.”

“Which were?” I pushed.

Her eyes narrowed. “He wanted to get married. I’m too young for that.”

I howled.

“Bridget, you’re nearly thirty-two years old. It’s time to settle down,” Mom supplied.

“You can say that again,” Lisa muttered, joining in the conversation.

Lisa was my second oldest sister. Ever since we arrived, she’d been watching Ebony. For her to finally speak meant she must have formulated an opinion.

“Ebony, where are you from? You don’t have a California accent.”

“Charlotte, North Carolina,” she replied.

“Wow, you’re a long way from home. How did you end up here?”

The moment Ebony dreaded had arrived. I decided to give her some space, confident she could handle my sisters. I kissed her hand and continued to stand next to my father while she followed them to sit in the patio chairs. I stood in silence, listening to the flow of questions and answers between them. Lisa was obviously filling in for our older sister, Andrea, and would give her and Caroline a detailed report in private once they returned.

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AHNEB Sale with seal pic 450

Ebony is a smart, sexy, career-oriented black woman who wants nothing more than a summer fling with a man who challenges her mind and body. What she doesn’t expect is a blond-haired, blue-eyed bass player—who won’t take “no” for an answer—to accept the challenge.

When Ebony’s attempt at a brief fling turns into more, despite negative reactions from friends and family, she finds juggling love, family, and career are nothing compared to the ultimate betrayal she endures. Now her dreams spiral into lies and secrets that threaten her future and her best friend’s trust.

ONLY .99 cents for a limited time only! (Sales price applies to all eBook formats)

For more information on The Butterfly Memoirs Series and a sample of the next book, Jadedvisit this link!

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Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!

MJ

About Me Twitter Facebook Google+ Goodreads Linkedin Email

A HEART NOT EASILY BROKEN is .99 cents!!!!!

Starting today, you can get your copy of my Bestselling novel, A HEART NOT EASILY BROKEN (Book 1 of The Butterfly Memoirs) for only .99 cents! For those of you who have followed my blog for the past three years, you had a chance to watch me grow as an author and share my writing experiences while I wrote, edited, queried, and published my debut novel. If you haven’t read it, now is your chance! The sale last only during the month of July so buy a copy and tell a friend!

Happy Reading!

AHNEB Sale with seal pic 450

Ebony is a smart, sexy, career-oriented black woman who wants nothing more than a summer fling with a man who challenges her mind and body. What she doesn’t expect is a blond-haired, blue-eyed bass player—who won’t take “no” for an answer—to accept the challenge.

When Ebony’s attempt at a brief fling turns into more, despite negative reactions from friends and family, she finds juggling love, family, and career are nothing compared to the ultimate betrayal she endures. Now her dreams spiral into lies and secrets that threaten her future and her best friend’s trust.

(Sales price applies to all eBook formats)

 

For more information on The Butterfly Memoirs Series and a sample of the next book, Jaded, visit this link!

#####

 

Thank you for stopping by! I love to make new friends. Got questions or comments? Leave a comment, or connect with me online!

MJ

About Me Twitter Facebook Google+ Goodreads Linkedin Email