Monthly Archives: December 2012

Guest Blogger Avril Ashton

Hey y’all, today I have a very special guest. Avril Ashton has been one of my critique partners for years. One of the really awesome things about being a critique partner to talented writers is being able to read their work before anyone else does. And I can honestly say Avril’s stories do not disappoint. Her latest story, Sinner, Savior is amazing. And here she is, Avril!

There’s this thing that happens to me when I’m writing; every song I hear somehow fits into the story. Whatever emotion the singer is trying to convey somehow resonates with that particular set of characters, with the specific storyline.

The lovely Danica blackmailed me into talking about the top ten songs on my Sinner, Savior playlist (which includes over fifty sounds, by the way). I browsed the entire list and picked my faves, which turned out to be more like fifteen give or take a few, then made those into a playlist. Yes, I am listening to them as I type.

First up, and really the song that set the tone for the entire book is John Mayer’s Gravity. Love. That. Song. Pablo goes through some really emotional ish and every time I had to go there with him, every time we had to take that inevitable journey to the dark side, I’d put Gravity on repeat. In one particular scene that involves a hospital, I listened to it for eight hours straight.

In one heated scene where Dev is pleading for Pablo to give him a chance—give them a chance— Demi Lovato’s Give Your Heart a Break just worked. Dev lays himself bare for Pablo, putting all he feels and all he wants on the table and he asks Pablo to do the same. It’s not an easy thing to do under any circumstance and more than once I felt like a true voyeur, intruding on such intensely private moments.

Trey Songz Heart Attack and Usher’s Climax spoke to the push and pull theme going on in Sinner, Savior. The pain and the pleasure so tightly entwined that they appear to be one and the same. Sometimes they were. The joys. The highs. The lows. And all the in-betweens. Dev wants—knows—he should go, he should leave. Pablo realizes the same, but both men find they need each other. They need to stay. Dealing with that is never a cut and dry situation.

Rascal Flatts. Man, love those guys. I have like five or six of their songs on this playlist, but let’s talk about I Melt and Like I am. I listened to those while In Pablo’s POV as he interacts with Dev. With his heart still broken and bloodied from losing Angelo, Pablo doesn’t get just how much Dev cares. Or why Dev cares. Pablo doesn’t see what Dev sees in him, why Dev could think of giving up his life to be with him. Again, it’s hard for him to accept. With I Melt, well, I guess this says it all: “When you look at me like that…” Pablo moved inside him, slow and steady. “Everything you feel is in your eyes, and I can’t—I can’t look away.”

Love it.

Have you heard of The Weeknd? No? Go look him up on YouTube. That man’s voice is sex, sex flavoured with brown liquor and weed. Just…decadent. And dirty at the same time. Wicked Games, High For This, The Zone, The Morning, What You Need. Those are what I listened to while writing the sex. Familiarize yourself with The Weeknd.

Special mention goes to Beyonce’s 1+1. I turned it on when the guys had their last bit of lovemaking before the Black Moment, before Dev walked out of Pablo’s life. I turned on 1+1 and completely lost myself. I started typing then looked up hours later with no idea what I wrote or what transpired between then, but that song was on and the men had had their mind-blowing sex.

Music is part of my writing staple; I need my computer, coffee and music. It’s just not the same if I have no music. Just not. 

Here’s some more songs; still not the complete list 😉

  • 5 O’Clock by T-Pain, Wiz Khalifa and Lily Allen
  • Alone by Heart
  • And Our Feelings by Babyface
  • Angels Cry by Mariah Carey
  • Arms by Christina Perry
  • Bad Habits by Maxwell
  • Faster by Matt Nathanson
  • Give in to Me Leighton Meester and Garret Hedlund
  • Kissed You by Gloriana
  • Half of my Heart by John Mayer
  • Heartbeat by The Fray
  • It’s Time to Come Home by Matchbox Twenty
  • It’s A Pity by Tanya Stevens (Reggae/Dancehall)
  • Longing For by Jah Cure (Reggae/Dancehall)
  • Love is by Jah Cure (Reggae/Dancehall)
  • Let Me Go by 3 Doors Down
  • Madness by Muse
  • Over You by Graffity6
  • Action by Terror Fabulous and Nadine Sutherland (Reggae/Dancehall)
  • Undone by Hailey Reinhart


sinnersavior_msrSinner or Savior? Each man has a choice to make. It should be simple. It never is.

Gun runner Pablo Castillo has cemented his reputation in the gun trade as callous and cold-hearted. Personal feelings no longer matter, not with everyone out to make him a sacrifice on their way to the top. He remains untouchable, until a meeting with a rival gang leader and a new deal brings him face-to-face with temptation.

Dev is the right hand to a sadistic bastard out for blood and glory. He hides his true feelings of distaste for his boss, not the least of his many secrets. He could’ve sworn those secrets were safe, but after meeting Pablo he’s not so sure. The two men come together in a heated affair neither can deny, battling themselves, each other and a deadly enemy bent on spilling blood. Pablo and Dev will have to stick together or walk away from a love neither man expected to find. The choice should be simple. It never is.

At Ellora’s Cave:


Kissing Dev had to be one of his biggest mistakes.

Pablo stared unseeing out the window of his office. The intoxicating scent of a welcome summer rain filled the air, but he couldn’t enjoy it.

He was back on that boat, under Dev, and loving every second of the other man’s heavy weight. Every swipe of his tongue. Nothing good could come of his dallying with one of York’s men, not when Pablo had that bastard in his crosshairs for trying to take him out.

York had to be taught a lesson—there were some people in this world you fucked with and some you don’t.

Pablo resided squarely in the don’t column.

But Dev. That kiss. It’d been two days and he sure as hell couldn’t forget it, not the taste of Dev or the scent of him.

I need to get laid.

His neglected libido had to be the only explanation for his acting like a lovesick fool. For allowing himself to be taken down by the enemy. Because Dev was the enemy, those firm lips and talented tongue notwithstanding.

Pablo shifted in his chair to ease the pressure in his groin. He’d gone to great lengths to safeguard himself and to get where he was, a little thing like a hard-on for one of York’s men sure as fuck wasn’t allowed to ruin that.

Not by a long shot.

He’d settle some things with his men and finally take that long-neglected trip to Philly to see Levi, get his dick spit-shined and a tight hole to sink into. He had no doubts by the time he got back to Brooklyn, he’d have gotten over wanting to fuck pretty boy Dev.

A knock sounded on the door and he looked up as Mateo and Freddo entered.

“Any news?” He lifted an eyebrow as the men sat on the couch opposite him.

Mateo spoke first, his dark-brown hair falling into his eyes when he nodded. “We think it’s him, but we still can’t be one hundred percent sure. He covers his tracks well.”

Freddo grunted in agreement. “Yeah, slippery bastard.”

“Has to be him.” Pablo got up and began pacing. “He’s stayed pretty much under our radar, but his choice of guns always gave him away.” He’d been on a personal quest to find his mother’s murderer for years and after all the frustration and anger, after debating whether to give up or not, he may have lucked out. He’d stake his life that York’s new client was the man he’d been searching for.

Mateo looked up at him. “Sounds like he’s preparing for something big though, with that amount of ammo. And the AR-15s, man…”

“Yeah.” Pablo was intimately familiar with the assault rifles and the damage they did. “We need to find him.”

“But how?” Freddo asked. “Did you get anything from York’s man the other day?”

Pablo shrugged. “Nothing useful, but I did promise to kill him if he didn’t find out the client’s identity.”

“That could work.” Freddo chuckled and Mateo joined in.

“It sure could.” Pablo sat back down at his desk. “Keep asking around, see if this mysterious client has approached anyone else to act as go-between for guns.” He fired up his computer then looked over his shoulder. “I’m leaving for Philly in a few hours, gotta see a man about some stuff.”

“Need some men?”

“Just one,” he answered Mateo. “No big entourage. We’re trying for a quick in and out.” In more ways than one. “By the way, who’s on York’s man, Dev?”

“Marcus and Fitch,” Freddo said. “They already checked in for the day, said nothing’s moving.”

Pablo turned back to the computer. “I want to know the minute anything does move, got it?”

A chorus of “got it, boss” rang out as the men left the room and closed the door behind them. Pablo grimaced, swallowing the urge to yell at them for directly disobeying his orders and calling him boss. That word sat heavily on his chest as he composed an email, reaching out for help.

He needed answers and in order to do that he had to resurrect ghosts.

He hurriedly sent the email off, fingertips ice cold, and stared at the tiny, translucent trails of water as they crawled along the window pane. He’d be the first to acknowledge he had a shitload of demons waiting to be exorcised, but he’d start with the easiest.

Pretty boy Dev.

A quick fuck from the very talented Levi would remove any lingering traces of Dev from Pablo’s skin and head. He was sure of it.

Many hours later, balls wrung dry, Levi’s scratches still raw on his skin, Pablo stood under a scalding shower in a nondescript Philadelphia hotel, Dev’s face dancing behind his closed eyes, regretting that promise.


Author BIO/Links

l always wanted to have a sexy bio, one to reflect who I am, but after drawing a blank, l could only come up with: I eat cake and I read books…ooh, and I write ‘em too. No one liked it and after massive peer-pressure and pouting, I managed something more…suitable?

A Caribbean transplant, Avril now lives in Brooklyn, N.Y with a tolerant Spousal Equivalent. Together they raise an eccentric daughter who loves reading and school (not so much school anymore). Avril’s earliest memories of reading revolve around discussing plot points of The Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys with an equally book-minded mother  

Always in love with the written word, Avril finally decided to do the writing in August of ’09 and never looked back. Spicy love scenes, delicious heroes, and wicked women burn up the pages of Avril’s stories, but there’ll always be a happy ending; Av remains a believer of love in all its forms.


Friend Avril on:!/AvrilAsh




Filed under Guest Blog

Interview with Caveman Taylor

Hey y’all, I’m back again with another interview with one of Ellora’s Cave’s delectable cover models. This week I have Caveman Taylor on the blog. This was my first phone interview and I’ll admit I spent most of the interview trying not to say embarrassing things. I didn’t quite manage as you’ll see, but it was fun and Taylor definitely kept me on my toes. I did not record this interview *cough* so I had to go by my own keyboarding skillz and memory. I hope I was able to capture Taylor’s open and funny personality.

He might, might stop by to answer questions, so if you see something I failed to ask him, be sure to leave it in the comments and hopefully he’ll be able to respond.

Danica: Have you ever read one of the books you’ve been a cover model for?
Taylor:  I read WyndRiver Sinner and really liked it.
Danica: What did you think of it?
Taylor: They’re more graphic than I thought they would be. I didn’t know anybody was into that.
Danica: You have no idea.
Danica: Do you have a favorite band? Is there a band you’ve always wanted to see live but haven’t?
Taylor: The Black Keys. They were in concert in Dallas and we had to do a promo so I missed because I had to go back to the club. I heard The Black Keys when they first began were offered like $300,000 to put one of their songs in a mayonnaise commercial but they turned it down because they didn’t want people to think they sold out.
Danica: If someone offered you $300,000 to smear mayonnaise all over your body in a commercial, would you do it?
Taylor: Of course I would!
Danica: I’ll start saving my pennies now…

Danica: What’s the one place in the world you’d love to visit and why?
Taylor: I always wanted to go to California and go surfing, but I was too busy. Hopefully next year or whenever. I’ve been nearly everywhere else.

Danica: What do you have going on right now? Do you have any upcoming appearances? If so, when, where and will there be video? Just joking about that last one. Sort of. Ahem.
Taylor: We’re gonna be on ABC News, an everyday life kind of thing. They filmed me boxing at the gym and things like that. And Fox News is going to be interviewing us again soon. I don’t have any dates for those yet.


Danica: How many hours do you spend in the gym?
Taylor: Here’s the thing. I like to work out and I enjoy it, but I don’t like to work out for a long time. I split it up three days on, one day off, then two days on and one day off an hour each day.
Danica: Out of curiosity, what’s your calorie intake?
Taylor: I like to eat a lot. I don’t know how many calories I take in but it’s got to be maybe 3000 calories a day. I try to splurge every day. But we have a photo shoot coming up so I’ve been dieting lately.
Danica: We both agreed dieting sucks.

Danica: What do you think is your best feature?
Taylor: Besides my personality? I get more compliments on my ass. I remember when I was a kid and I was going to school, the high school girls would make me stand up in the middle of the school bus to check out my ass.


Danica: What’s your favorite kink?
Taylor: I like being blindfolded and surprised. I don’t mind a girl being a little rough. Most girls like to try to get me to do that to them, and I’ll do it, you know, whatever they want, but I kind of like the surprise of not knowing what’s going on. I would like to be tied up, blindfolded and ravished, taken advantage of, used like sex doll.
Danica: I swear I did not put any words in his mouth. He was trying to be a gentleman.

Danica: Do you have any favorite embarrassing or funny moments from a photo shoot?
Taylor I was in Playgirl magazine a couple of times. The first was September 2003, two photo shoots and I was moving around a lot at the time so I don’t know the exact date on the second one.
Danica: If someone finds a copy of these magazines, would you be willing to sign them?
Taylor:  Sure.
Danica: Now for your most awkward moment in a photo shoot.
Taylor: For one of my Playgirl magazine shoots, I was supposed to be a cowboy, so I was in a barn and there were horses in the stalls. There were people all over the place and I was like trying to get it hard, jerking off in front of 10 people. As soon as I would get kind of hard this one horse would reach out and try to bite my shoulder.
Danica: Was the horse jealous?
TaylorTotally, LOL. I embarrassed the horse.


Danica:  Are you a breast or a butt man?
Taylor: Generally I like a big nice ass, but not opposed to big boobs.

Danica: What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done as a model?
Taylor: Most of the crazy sex stuff is in the 2nd book. I need to think about this.
Danica: FYI, I’m blushing at this point because he found it easier to remember crazy sex things than what crazy things he did as a model. Seriously, he said “Hm, let me get off the sex thing and get back to you on this.”

Danica: What’s your favorite color?
Taylor: I’m actually color blind, but I love blue. Like the Mustang Sapphire Blue.


Danica: Favorite food?
Taylor: Steak, medium rare

Danica: Do you prefer winter or summer?
Taylor: I like Autumn
Danica: Being from the south, I’m in total agreement with him here. Autumn, when we get it, rocks.

Danica: What’s one movie you can watch over and over?
Taylor: Casino Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci are awesome together. It’s such good guy movie.

Danica: Do you prefer mountains or beaches?
Taylor: I do like the beach.

Danica: Pets? What kind?
Taylor: No pets, I work so much it’s hard for me to be home enough.

Danica: Boxers, briefs, commando?
Taylor: I like boxer briefs cause with my legs my hamstrings rub together. I like a little material there.
Danica: I have the same problem, but not because my legs are muscular.

Danica: Is there anything about yourself you feel enough people don’t know? Taylor: I like living life to the fullest. I like being a free spirit. My motto is “if it feels good, do it.”



Filed under fantasy man friday


First off, I nearly overslept this morning. I could blame it on nyquil because I took a dose before bed last night, but that stuff sort of wears off after four hours. No, the blame for me waking up too late to work out or even have a cup of coffee this morning goes to my characters.

It all started innocently enough. Sort of. I was waffling on a story. Okay, I was waffling on several stories and it occurred to me that others in my group—yeah, that group, The Cabal of Hotness—were suffering from the same inability to write. One night, after being frustrated by my characters yet again and hearing of another author’s problems getting the story out, I decided we needed to make a pact. And so we did. We’ve all vowed to complete and submit a story to a publisher by December 31, 2012. Failing to meet this deadline means at RomantiCon 2013, you’d have to buy the cabal drinks. The motivation here is money because some of us are lushes *cough “not me”*. If we meet this date we get to toast ourselves and pat ourselves on the backs for a job well done.

This brings me back to my original point. Seeing as how I don’t want to have to buy drinks for everyone, even though I’ll probably get toasted and start playing Lady Bountiful and buy drinks anyway, I realized I needed to get off my ass and write a friggin’ book. I have so many stories started, so many characters who don’t want to friggin’ cooperate with me, I’ve been pulling my hair out trying to decide which one needs to be the “one”. Writing on more than one wasn’t getting me anywhere, so I closed my eyes and picked one and that’s what I’ve been working on slowly. Very slowly.

I was supposed to write six thousand words yesterday, but only managed about 2500 before I got distracted by Duck Dynasty. But I have been trying to figure out where the first “real” sex scene because that’s what I dreamed about in my nyquil haze. Sex, sex, and more sex between my hero and heroine. In a gym, positions I’m still trying to figure out, you name it, they were doing it. Is it any wonder I woke up all bleary-eyed and exhausted?

So yeah, I’ll be writing lots and lots of sex it seems. I figure I can probably eek 15k in sex scenes which will put my story in the novella category. Throw in the conflict, the dark moment and the happy ever after and I can probably push this story to 38k, possibly 40k. Now, if I can do all of that, edit it, send it off to CPs and revise it one more time before sending it off on December 31st, I’ll be good.

*crosses her fingers*

What did you dream about last night? Oh! A few quick announcements to make. Don’t miss today’s edition of Demystifying the Male over at Lea Barrymire’s blog. And if you have any questions you’ve always wanted to ask a man but were afraid to, be sure to let her know so she can pass it along. Also, tomorrow I have the sexy and fun Taylor Cole on the blog talking about nearly anything I could think to ask him. It’s a great interview so be sure to stop by.

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Filed under Writing

DJ Lea in the House

For the next two months, I’ve invited my fellow Cabal of Hotness buddies to take over my blog on Wednesdays and share a song from their current playlist, or their former playlist, or whatever works for them. Today we have Geeky Hotness herself, Lea Barrymire in the house!
I’m currently working on a succubus-meets-warlock story and find that this song is just loud and hard enough to get my fingers flying across the keyboard. Well, and it plays along with the theme of my story.

The story, Wired in Sin, is about a female who hates her life. She’s a ‘made’ succubus who has found a way to feed off sexual energy through a very non-conventional method. Lots of wires and phone cords in this story. And, no, it has nothing to do with BDSM. Victoria would do anything to stay away from people. Her hero, Dominick, knows she’s supposed to be his but has to find a way into her heart. He’s a sneaky bastard! LOL

Here’s a short, unedited, snippet… see what you think of my techno-wizard and succubus:

Dominick knew the moment that she started feeding off his energy. The magical pull was slight, but still there in the back of his mind. He couldn’t stop from smiling when her face finally relaxed and a beautifully peaceful look descended. She’d been distant and cool when first materializing in his mind. Now that he was feeding her he could feel her loosening up, releasing some of the control she had on their session and her mind.

Moving his hands up under the dress was a taste of delicious torture. He could feel her smooth skin under his palms, feel her heat, but could only imagine what she looked like. Were her legs long enough to wrap around his waist if he hoisted her against the wall? Would they look pale around his tanned skin? Did she have any freckles on her ivory skin, or was it creamy and unblemished? He groaned. His imagination fueling his thoughts, feeding his desire to unwrap her like a present. He wanted to push the fabric off her legs and catch a glimpse of the prize he was after, but the longer he waited the better it would be.

He watched her face as he stroked both hands up along her legs. He stopped at her knees and skimmed his palms back down to her ankles, lightly running his fingers over her skin. He grinned as she shivered under his ministrations. He did the circuit again, up slowly along the outside of her calf and then back down to her ankles. The feel of goosebumps under his touch made him want to shout in triumph. She was reacting to the session even if she didn’t want to.

Dominick wanted to give her so much more. “Open your legs, Victoria. Spread open for me, love.”


Filed under What's Playing Wednesdays

Back to Normal?

I think I’m back to normal. But really, what’s normal?

The bronchitis has run its course leaving me five pounds lighter and somewhat well-rested. I think what I dislike the most is the knowledge that going back to work today means I’ll have to hear the crap from my coworkers. Because for some reason, my absence bothers them more than anyone else’s.

I have no idea why. Would it really kill them to mind their own business? Yeah, so today won’t be my finest. I have a week’s worth of work to catch up on and irritating coworkers to ignore. But, that’s the price you pay when you’re that awesome, which apparently I am.

How are y’all doing this fine Monday?


Filed under Uncategorized

Christmas Release Pimpage

Hey y’all, I know it’s  Sunday and I don’t normally post on Sundays, but I thought y’all might want to check out my cousine, Jillian Chantal’s free read, Christmas on St. Charles Ave.

Blurb: New Orleans, Christmas Eve, 1947: Brothers, Dirk and Beaumont christmas cover dbpMcSwain are both about to become fathers. Dirk’s wife has had a number of miscarriages and at thirty-six years old, is afraid this is her last chance for a healthy baby. Bo’s wife is pregnant for the first time. Both are due to give birth soon. The brothers arrange a surprise ride for their women in Papa Noel’s sleigh which is actually a horse drawn carriage with fake reindeer. The evening starts out merry and bright but before the night is over, they will need a Christmas miracle.


Filed under reading