Monday, October 27, 2008

Ooops!...Contest Winner

So I'm just slightly behind...I was supposed to announce the winner Friday, and it's Monday. Ooops!

Last week's contest winner, receiving an e-copy of Donna Hatch's debut novel, The Stranger She Married, is...

Linda Banche

Congratulations, Linda! E-mail me at and I will get you your copy of The Stranger She Married.

A huge thank you to Donna Hatch for joining us last week, and thanks to all of you who commented.

All manner of craziness has broken out at my house so I won't be blogging this week. I need to corral the chaos...and I'm quite sure it's going to take a good part of the week! Thanks for bearing with me. Hope to see you all back next week when I feature Seduced in Seoul author Helen Hardt.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Wednesday's Word Wizard: Donna Hatch!

Current Read: The Stranger She Married by Donna Hatch

Please welcome the lovely Donna Hatch, today's Word Wizard! Donna's debut novel, The Stranger She Married is now available from The Wild Rose Press.

Tell us about your release, The Stranger She Married.

Okay, here's my "elevator pitch"Book 1 of the Rogue Hearts Series: Torn between a disfigured war hero with the heart of a poet, and a handsome libertine who may not be all he seems, impoverished Alicia must marry by the end of the month. Despite a murder threat looming over her, learning to love the stranger she married may pose the greatest danger of all … to her heart.

The cover is gorgeous! Can you tell us a little about how covers come into being? Do you have input into the process?

Most publishers don't let the authors have any input, but I was lucky -- mine does. I filled out a questionnaire with character descriptions and a concept of what I'd pictured. The finished result was unlike anything I'd imagined, and my book's hero looks nothing like the cover, but they got the heroine spot-on right down to the eye color. And I do like it, too -- especially the castle in the background.

What are you working on now?

I'm finalizing the edits on book 2 of the Rogue Heart's Series which is called "The Guise of a Gentleman." The plan is to have it released in May or June 2009. Each book is a stand-alone book, about a different brother of the Amesbury family, and the family members wander in and out of each other's books.

I love to get updated on characters from other stories! You have a posse of kiddos, how do you find time to write? How do you balance family with writing?

Yes, with 6 children, making time to write is very challenging. I do much of my writing at night after they are in bed, or during nap time, but when I'm on a roll, I write instead of unimportant things like sleep and fix dinner. I haven't dusted since last Christmas and I gave up scrap booking. This year, my youngest child just started kindergarten, so now I can write after they all leave for school. I also work in an office part time every afternoon, so that really cuts into my writing but I'm very focused, (or obsessed) so I keep at it at odd times of the day. And night.

I think you have to be obsessed in this business. :0) What is the coolest thing about being an author?

A huge rush came when I got my contract and I was giddy about it for months. But I have to say that it was nothing compared to the day my book came out and I saw it on the home page of my publisher. The euphoria was a surreal experience. The giddiness is still with me and I've noticed people inching away from me when my grin gets a bit too happy. I guess I scare people. And now I do it without even opening my mouth.

The mark of a true author - scaring those around us without even opening our mouths! What has surprised you about being a published author?

How excited my friends and family were for me. I knew they'd be supportive, but I had no idea how they'd rally around me and help me promote it.

What do you like to do when you aren't writing?

I love to read more than almost anything else. And I love music; I sing, play the harp, and am the choir director for church. I also like to swim, water ski, snow ski, and dance. I'm totally uncoordinated, so I don't play any team sports and sports enthusiasts worldwide thank me for it. And, sappy as it sounds, I love to spend time with my husband; talking, walking, playing racquetball, or just cuddling.

A random question: This has turned into the theme for October...Do you celebrate Halloween? If so, what's your favorite costume?

My children and I love Halloween. We decorate the house and take the kids trick or treating around the neighborhood. I was never cool enough to be anything scary as a kid, I always went for the pretty costumes like fairies and princesses. Lately, I've been recyling a Maid Marian costume and my husband dresses as Robin Hood. I have yet to find an adequate Sherwood Forest, though.

Donna is generously offering an e-copy of The Stranger She Married in a contest. Same rules as always - leave us a comment and you're entered into the random drawing. The winner will be announced Friday!

Want your very own copy of The Stranger She Married? Order on line at Look for The Stranger She Married on the historicals page or for a direct link click here. You can download it onto your computer where you can print it if you wish, or you can download it into your Palm Pilot, Sony E-Reader, or Amazon's Kindle. It's only $6.00. It will also be in paper back in April for $14.00.

Check out Donna's website here. There's a "buy it now" link on her website as well as a book trailer for The Stranger She Married. You can also visit her on MySpace...that's how we met!

Happy Wednesday!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Contest Winner and Friday Fiction

Current Read: Marry Christmas by Jane Goodger

A huge thank you to Jane for joining us this week, and thanks to everyone who joined in our conversation!

And now, for a contest winner...



Tena, please e-mail Jane at with your snail mail information and she'll get Marry Christmas headed your way! Those of you who'd love to have a copy of Marry Christmas but didn't win today, just click here to purchase your very own copy from

And now, some Friday fiction:

Just the Sexiest Man Alive is contemporary romance author Julie James' debut novel, and it's creating lots of buzz! Clicke here to read an excerpt.

Check out author Tracy MacNish and an excerpt from her historical romance Veiled Promises here.

If you like romantic suspense, click here for a link to No Escape from author Shannon K. Butcher.

Happy reading! Have a great weekend everyone! I'm off to tour a southern Colorado winery and harvest grapes at a small Colorado vineyard. It's tough, I know. :0) But it's all in the name of research for my next manuscript. I'll let you know how it went next week!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Author Feature: Jane Goodger

Current Read: Marry Christmas by Jane Goodger

A Christmas wedding to the Duke of Bellingham. Any other socialite in Newport, Rhode Island, would be overjoyed at the prospect, but Elizabeth Cummings finds her mother’s announcement as appealing as a prison sentence. Elizabeth has not the slightest desire to meet Randall Blackmore, let alone be bartered for an English title. Her heart belongs to another, and the duke’s prestige, arrogance, and rugged charm will make no difference to her plans of elopement.

Against his expectations and desires, Randall Blackmore has inherited a dukedom and a vast estate that only marriage to an heiress can save. Selling his title to the highest bidder is a wretched obligation, but to Randall’s surprise his intended bride is pretty, courageous, delightfully impertinent—and completely uninterested in becoming a Duchess. Yet suddenly, no other woman will do, and a marriage in name only will never be enough for a husband determined to win his wife in body, heart, and soul…

Please give a warm welcome to today's Word Wizard, author Jane Goodger!

Thanks for joining us today Jane. Tell us about your latest project, Marry Christmas. Love that title, by the way. :0)

I’ve had the idea for Marry Christmas brewing for quite a while. I was so fascinated by Consuelo Vanderbilt’s life. At 18, she was forced to marry the Duke of Marlborough even though she was in love with another man. She was an heiress and he was an English peer in desperate need of cash. The Duke was, in modern lingo, a real tool---at least according to Consuelo Vanderbilt’s biography. He once took a valuable item, hid it, then called the servants in to demand to know who stole it. The poor maids were in tears until he, laughing, produced the item. Nice guy. I remember feeling sorry for poor Consuelo and wishing she’d had a happy ending (she did end up divorcing the duke and remarrying later in life). I decided I would create my own heroine, fashioned after Consuelo, but give her a much nicer duke. My heroine still has a difficult time, for she is forced to marry a man she doesn’t know or love, while she is in love with another man. But my heroine, Elizabeth, has a much happier ending with her duke, Randall Blackmore.

Sounds intriguing! I love when real life events inspire fictional ones. This is your first historical novel in seven years. Was it difficult to return to that arena? What did you find most challenging? What was surprisingly easy, if anything?

I was so excited when my editor asked me to write an historical instead of another contemporary. I only had three months to do it, and with three kids and teaching, it was a real challenge. But the book wrote itself. It was one of the most amazing writing experiences I’ve ever had. It was almost as if I were reading Marry Christmas instead of writing it, that’s how wonderful the experience was. I missed writing historicals; it’s really where my heart is. I’m certainly not discounting writing contemporaries again (I have a couple things brewing), but I find historicals easier and more fun to write. I’m a real history junkie and love the research aspect.

Three months, whew! I do love it when things just flow. If a group of people or a book club were discussing Marry Christmas what do you think would be the topic of discussion?

I think they would discuss whether or not they would have acted as Elizabeth did. Elizabeth was put in an incredibly difficult position, something as a writer I was very cognizant of. I think, when reading a book, it is easy to get angry with a character. Why doesn’t she fall in love with Rand the way I am? Well, because Elizabeth doesn’t know Rand as well as the reader does. Of course the reader thinks my hero is wonderful. But from Elizabeth’s perspective, he was a fortune hunter interested only in her money. Also, Elizabeth is one of my youngest heroines, so I have her acting at times like a nineteen year old. She clings to her lost love and to the idea of choosing her own husband. I kept thinking, ‘how would I feel?’ if I were nineteen. Elizabeth is a complicated and realistic character, and in the end, she’s the perfect heroine for Randall..

Interesting! It's easy as a reader to forget that we know more than the characters do. I think it's a testament to your writing savvy that you were able to step back into the mind of a nineteen year old. I struggle with that - which is why I write heroines closer to my age! :0) Is there a particular character that you've written over the years to whom you really related personally?

That would have to be Maggie from When There Is Hope. She is an eternal optimist, and I am definitely a cup-half-full person. Even in the face of horrible odds, she tries to find something, anything to cling to. She believed that, when there is hope, anything is possible. I loved Maggie!

I'm adding When There Is Hope to my to-be-read list! What are you working on now?

I’m working on the sequel to Marry Christmas. It’s Margaret (Maggie) and Lord Hollings’ story. I’ve already gotten many emails wondering when that book will be coming out and if it features Maggie (I obviously love that name!). The book is currently untitled, but it will be released for Christmas next year.

How exciting! I know I'll be waiting anxiously...I've just started Marry Christmas and can't hardly put it down to feed my children! :0) Would you tell us something about yourself, unrelated to writing? Hobbies? Quirks?

It’s a major, major effort for me to clean my house. Don’t get me wrong, I love a clean house, I just wish someone else would do it all for me. I always keep it clean enough so if my mother calls to say she’s coming to visit, I can make it look just fine in the thirty minutes it takes her to get to my house. I simply make sure she doesn’t look inside my closets or my oven (here’s a little hint, ladies, you can stuff an oven full of dirty dishes much faster than you can wash ‘em. Just remember they’re there before you turn the oven on.).

Mmm, there's nothing better than a clean & decluttered house...too bad I don't live in one! And here's your random question - although I'm reluctant to end this interview, it's been so much fun! *Sigh* All good things must come to an end, I guess. Your random question continues our theme this month: Do you celebrate Halloween? If so, what is your favorite thing about it? Costume? Ritual?

I have three little kids, so I LOVE Halloween. When I was a kid, there was a big scare about razor blades in apples and drugs in candy. So Halloween was cancelled. Instead, our community put on Halloween parties. Big snooze. Nothing beats going out in the dark in a cool costume and getting a bag full of candy. I make sure my kids walk until they can’t carry their bags anymore wearing the best costumes we can think of. I definitely am living vicariously through them. I wish I could freeze time so they would stay little and would always go out trick-or-treating.

I remember that scare - our Halloween was cancelled also. And I agree, parties just don't compare to trick-or-treating! Jane, thank you again for taking time out of your busy schedule to hang out with us!

Jane has graciously agreed to give away one copy of Marry Christmas. Just post a comment about the interview or ask a question, and you'll be entered into the random drawing. Good luck!

Can't wait for the contest to end on Friday? Just click here to purchase your very own copy of Marry Christmas. Also be sure to visit Jane's website: You can learn more about Jane's historicals and her contemporary writing under the name Jane Blackwell.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, October 13, 2008

"Movie Magic"...Book Trailers

Current Read: The Great Scot by Donna Kauffman

Here's some movie magic for all of you Armchair Heroines on this magnificent Monday!

This is for Night Huntress by Yasmine Galenorn. I've never read any of her books, but I've added her to my list! Night Huntress is book 5 in the Otherworld (AKA Sisters of the Moon) series, and it sounds like they need to be read in order. Let me know what you think, and if you've read anything from Ms. Galenorn...

This trailer is for Ghost Moon by Rebecca York, another author I'm adding to my list. I love this trailer!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Contest Winners & Friday Fiction

Current Read: The Great Scot by Donna Kauffman

OK, ladies, I have contest winners!

But first a huge thank you to Anne Krist for spending the past few days with us despite feeling terribly under the weather!

And a thank you to all of you commenters out there. What a turnout and fun conversation!

So, winners...

Congratulations to...

Marnee Jo - winner of an e-copy of Burning Bridges

Lindseye - winner of an e-copy of Burning Bridges

Karrie - winner of one of Dee's books (your choice)

Congratulations, ladies. Please e-mail Anne at to arrange delivery of your books!
And here's your Friday Fiction fix:

Author Donna Hatch's first book, The Stranger She Married, was just released today from The Wild Rose Press! Click here for a short excerpt.

Lisa Kleypas has a new book out, Seduce Me At Sunrise. Check out an excerpt here.

Paranormal/Urban Fantasy author, Lynda Hilburn's newest book, Dark Harvest, is out. Read excerpts here.

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Featured Author: Anne Krist

Current Read: The Great Scot by Donna Kauffman

Please give a warm Armchair Heroines' welcome to Anne Krist, today's featured author!

Tells us about your book, Burning Bridges.

Tiffany, thanks so much for letting me chat with your readers!

Burning Bridges is the result of hearing a news report while visiting my mom in Virginia. The reporter told of bags of mail decades old found in a mail carrier’s shed. I wondered what changes had taken place in people’s lives because they hadn’t received that a letter in one of those bags. I’d wanted to write a story involving Vietnam for a while, and the two components fell into place. The story for Burning Bridges came together quickly after that. Isn’t it the greatest feeling when the words almost write themselves?

Yeah, it's amazing! I love it when that happens. What are you working on now?

Right now I’m working on the first book in a series—my first series. I have to say, thinking in terms of multiple books is a little daunting. I’m more used to writing one thing at a time with one set of characters and then wham! I’m onto something else. In the first book, two old friends meet up again for the first time since high school. He doesn’t know she’s using him to forward a career goal—even though she loves him—and she doesn’t know he’s suffered with dyslexia all his life. That makes it sound kind of serious, but I’ve injected quite a bit of humor into it.

What do you think of being a published author?

Burning Bridges is my virgin book—that’s how Dee describes it, lol. (Dee is Anne's naughty "sister".) It feels wonderful to have it published! This book has been a very special part of me for a long time, and to have people read it now—and hooray! enjoy it—is an honor. I hope I uphold everyone’s good opinion with the next books.

Tell us a little about your sister...the naughty one. :0)

Dee—Dee S. Knight—and I are more than twins. It feels at times that we’re the same person. *G* Dee is hard at work finishing one project for Liquid Silver Books and another for Siren Publishing. The LSB story is a firefighter novella for a new series of theirs. The Siren project is so secret, she makes me close my eyes when she works on it, lol. But I have exciting news! I’m letting you know before anyone else—maybe before Dee, even. She and I are going to start a blog offering advice. I’m not sure who would ask the two of us for advice, lol, but surely we can find enough desperate people to handle a question a week or so. I’ll answer the question from my sweet, decent point of view and then Dee will give her saucy, naughty opinion. I can’t wait to give it a try!

I can't wait to give it a try! I have a whole list of questions...Do you have any hobbies you enjoy when you aren't writing?

I love reading, though I don’t consider it a hobby. I like needlework and crochet, and I love to cook and bake. But of all those, the only thing I have much time for is reading. These days, my favorite thing to make for dinner is reservations.

I'm with you on that one! I suppose when the local pizza joint recognizes your number and answers the phone with, "Hello Mrs. James, would you like the everyday "usual" or the Tuesday usual?", it's gotten a bit out of hand! :0)

You have print and electronic books available. How do you think the two compare? Do you have a favorite format? Have you had more success in one format versus the other?

I’d heard of electronic books years before I started writing. Hubby bought me an e-book reader for Christmas in 2000 and I fell in love with it. For the first time, I could read in bed and not disturb Jack (it was backlit), and sitting in a chair, I could read and hold a cup of coffee at the same time. But when I started writing, I had no idea publishers published e-books—isn’t that crazy? I was willing to buy them but hadn’t considered how they came about. I’ll always like print books. I have bunches of them sitting around the house right now waiting to be read. However, I do love e-books. I have to admit, it’s surprising to me to hear people say they have to hold a book to enjoy it. I guess I’m just easy to please. The joy of a book to me is in the characters and storyline, and I get that just as well from an electronic book. I wouldn’t say one format has been any more successful for me—they each have their own niches.

Interesting! I want an e-reader for Christmas. Now, for your random question: To carry on our Halloween theme started last week with Lee...Do you celebrate Halloween? If so, what's your favorite costume?

That Lee! Isn’t she a sweetheart??

Yes, she absolutely is!

And her book, The Twist, is great.

That's no joke!

And I know you’ve had Lindsay Townsend as a guest.

Yep - love her!

I just finished reading Flavia’s Secret and LOVED it!

It's sitting on my hard drive - waiting rather impatiently to be read! I read A Knight's Vow a few months!

But this Halloween question is Lee’s fault, huh?

Well, truth be told, it's mine because I asked her the question...but she answered it!

I’ll have to get her, lol. I celebrate by having candy on hand and I do answer the door, but I don’t dress up or go to dress up parties. The town where we live is Halloween crazy, though! Every house it seems has huge spiders crossing porch-width webs, witches flying from tree to tree, gravestones in the front yard or ghouls hanging from trees limbs. It’s amazing. They decorate for Halloween more than for Christmas.

Cool, I want to live there! I have a porch-width web and spiders crawling all over, too. :0)

Thanks so much for inviting me to blog with you Tiffany!

Thank you for being here, Anne!

Let us know what you think of Anne's interview and be entered to win one of two copies of Burning Bridges in e-form, as well as one copy of any Dee S. Knight book! How generous is Anne??!! And be sure to check out Anne's website at

Can't wait for the contest to end to get your hands on a copy of Anne's book? Click here and you can own your very own copy...right now!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Contest Winner

Howdy, Armchair Heroines!

I'm proud to announce the winner of The Twist by Lee Silver...


Congratulations! I'll forward your information to Lee and you two can work out the details.

A massive thank you goes out to Lee Silver for taking time out of her vacation to hang with us! And thank you to everyone who joined in our chat.

No Friday Fiction's high school Homecoming here in my little town so it's time to head out for the parade and the football game. Be sure to check in next week for an interview with Anne Krist, hopefully a romance reader hang out profile, and some Friday Fiction!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Feature Author: Lee Silver

Current Read: The Twist by Lee Silver

Title: The Twist
Author: Lee Silver
Genre: Romantic Suspense Theme: High Tech Metamorphosis
Length: 223 pages
Available at:
(Paperback: $12.99. ISBN 978-1606011751)
(E-book: 5.99. ISBN 1-60601-174-X)

"Every man should have to spend at least a month as a woman."~Debra Gaynor

ZANE TOLLISON’S wife is running through their cash faster than he can make it. A “Hail Mary” contract with Clearwater Tobacco arrives in the nick of time to keep his fledgling, consulting firm afloat and to unchain him once and for all from his narcissistic wife. Beautiful, brilliant and estranged, KATHY DAVIS is desperate for a new beginning. The feisty post doc bio-geneticist jumps at an offer from Clearwater, pouring her soul into a development that will revolutionize the tobacco industry.

The two are unwittingly reeled into a convoluted plan to steal $12 million; Zane is changing into a carbon copy of Kathy, a pawn in a bizarre genetic metamorphosis, entangling Kathy in a sinewy web of seduction and deceit. Forging a bond that will set the course of their destiny, they fight to overpower the diabolic hold that has taken over their lives.

I’ll admit it, I’m a geek! But setting a romance in the framework of high tech intrigue, my technical background turned out to be my best friend. I wanted a heroine who would stand toe to toe with the leading man and a plot that would keep a reader on the edge of their seat. The Twist is only the beginning.
~ Lee ~

FIVE STARS One of the most fascinating books that I've read in a long time. This is one book that is definitely a keeper! You are going to love The Twist. Kasey, KaseysView
4 1/2 STARS She created a world that seemed so real and devastating that it seems almost possible...I would highly recommend this one to anyone looking for a suspenseful ride that will keep them anxiously turning the pages Sandra, The Romance Studio
4 STARS Lee Silver writes with a great deal of humor and imagination. Her plot is interesting and creative. Debra Gaynor, Review Your Book
"A clever and witty sci-fi romp through big corporations, marriage and the gender wars." Dee S. Knight , author of Coming Home

"THE TWIST was a great novel!"
Taylor Perry, Read Rave Reviews

"THE TWIST moves from being a story about a complex game of dress up to an emotional and sensual journey...sprinkled with tastefully written naughty scenes you will enjoy from the first to last page." Silapa Jarun , author of Katana Duet

"The science in 'The Twist' is fascinating...very original and intriguing...Lee Silver keeps you guessing right till the end." Lindsay Townsend , author of Flavia's Secret


Zane heard the tap, tap, tap of a woman’s heels on the tile floor as he stared at his watch anxiously waiting for the elevator.
She was a tiny thing, not more than five foot three, probably in her early thirties. She stepped up beside him. Their eyes met and she smiled.
One of the big guns’ secretaries, I’ll bet. Zane couldn’t keep his eyes off her.
Wearing a stylishly short, gray tweed business suit, her long auburn hair was pulled in a French twist. Designer gold-rim glasses framed her petite face and green eyes. She looked like she had just stepped out of the latest issue of Vogue.
Zane’s eyes followed her every move as she stepped into the elevator. A leather notebook clenched to her chest, she was one hundred percent professional and drop dead gorgeous.
She turned to him, a ghost of a smile on her lips. Looking Zane squarely in the eyes, she matter-of-factly quipped, “All right, you’ve seen my ass. I guess you can come in now.”
He turned beet red as he walked into the elevator. The doors closed like a vault. “I, I am so sorry, but—”
“No buts about it. I wouldn’t have said that if I didn’t think you were cute.” She stepped out onto the second floor “See ya!”
He stood, frozen like a pillar of salt, as he watched her walk in slow motion down the hall.
“Seventh floor.”
“What did you say?”
She peered over her shoulder and grinned. “Chorde’s office. It’s on the seventh floor.”
Eyes glued to the seam along the back of her skirt, he opened his mouth to speak, but the words refused to come.
She rounded the corner out of his sight. His eyes still peering into the hall, Zane’s finger pressed the button for the seventh floor. As the doors began to close, he blurted out to the brushed steel walls of the elevator, “Thanks.”

* * * *

Chorde glanced at the clock as he reached for his hand. “So good to see that you are prompt. Nine o’clock on the button.”
Clenching his hand with a confident grip, Zane put on a well-practiced smile. “Well, I try, Jonathon.” The truth was he was late for everything. Pat often teased him that he’d be late for his own funeral.
Jonathon Chorde was a stately gentleman in his early sixties. His British accent and tailored, double-breasted suit gave him an air of cosmopolitan sophistication. He was medium height, perhaps five foot ten, balding, and a bit over weight.
Chorde motioned towards two stuffed leather chairs at the far corner of his office. He poured two cups of tea from a silver carafe and offered a small serving tray. “Pastry, Mr. Tollison?”
Never one to pass on a free breakfast, Zane reached for a cherry Danish. He flashed a grin as he took an over-sized bite. “Mr. Tollison was my father. You can call me Zane.”
“As you please. Down to business then, shall we?”
He set his cup on the marble tabletop and leaned forward. “We are both businessmen. I shan’t beat around the bush. Simply put, Clearwater wants to buy your name.”
A piece of Danish caught in Zane’s throat and he coughed into his napkin.
Chorde ignored the outburst and continued. “As I indicated when I spoke to you yesterday, we are in the process of pulling together a study to refute the accusations of the anti-smoking coalitions. Although we certainly value your insights, there is really very little we expect you to do. We already know what we want to find, and except for going through the motions of the actual ten-day investigation, our people have basically completed the final report.”
He reached for his tea and leaned back in his chair. Chorde continued, “We did feel that it was important for you to actually be here while we conduct the study to lend a touch of credence to the work. In any case, it will certainly benefit us both for you to learn as much as you can about the project. So you’ll be better prepared to field any questions that might come up about the research in the future.
“We shan’t detain you once we’ve gathered our data, but please, feel free to stay at Clearwater to dot and cross whatever I’s and T’s you feel are necessary to put the finishing touches to the report. After all, the findings are going to be released by Tollison Consulting.” Chorde’s smile could have belonged to the Grinch who stole Christmas. “We had hoped we could attract your services and took the liberty of having our legal people draft a preliminary agreement.”
He pushed a pen and a stack of papers towards Zane, and reached for a French cruller as he continued, “A good faith advance in the amount of 1.15 million dollars shall be deposited to your account upon signing the contract, with the balance being paid in ten equal installments of 1.15 million dollars each day for the duration of the study. The total for your services will be 12.65 million dollars.
“The future of the entire tobacco industry depends on the timely release of these findings. We shan’t tolerate any mishaps. The agreement provides a rather stiff penalty of 2.3 million dollars per day should you fail to see the job through.” Chorde’s face grew cold as he glared over the top of his glasses. “I prefer not to elaborate, but please understand, this would be the least of your concerns if the details of your actual role in the investigation should ever chance to leave this room.”
Zane stared at the contract, contemplating the contrast between the ...


Lee grew up in the rolling farmland outside of historic Valley Forge, PA. Neighbors were few and far between, and with no sisters or brothers she spent hours in her room daydreaming about the world outside her rural community. Cramming nine months of fun into summer vacations, Lee lived for the trips she took with her family to their place on the Delaware shore.

She graduated as her high school class salutatorian and went on to earn a BS in engineering from Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA. After several years of writing specification manuals for the Navy, Lee returned to school full-time to earn her graduate degree from Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA. She has spent the majority of her career as a professional engineer.

Lee has always enjoyed writing. Challenged with a series of health problems in the late 1990’s, she turned her technical experience to creative writing. The Twist is her first published novel.

Lee has spent most of her adult life in Tidewater, Virginia. She and her husband of 16 years live in a renovated Victorian on the Chesapeake Bay. Lee enjoys reading and relaxing on the beach at their summer home in Ocean City, MD.

And here's my interview with Lee Silver, today's "Word Wizard"!

Tell us about your first book, The Twist.

Hi Tiffany! Thank you for inviting me. It’s really great to be here with all my friends at Armchair Heroines. Just for fun, I’m going to put everybody who blogs this post in a hat for a chance to win a copy of my new romantic suspense, The Twist. Well, not actually them, just their names J

The Twist is a BookStrand #1 Bestseller! It was released in July and is available in paperback from Barnes & Noble and Amazon, and as an e-book from Fictionwise and BookStrand. I wanted a heroine who would stand toe to toe with the leading man and a plot that would keep a reader on the edge of his seat. The Twist is only the beginning. A story of mind-bending control and unnerving metamorphosis, The Twist unravels the tale of a hotshot consultant as he struggles to foil a plot to steal $12 million and to rescue the feisty, female scientist who has stolen his heart.

The hero actually turns into a carbon copy of the leading lady. I really had to get into Zane’s head to write The Twist. Women are so different...our emotions, what’s important to us, how we relate to each other. And then there’s the things we take for granted. Hair, nails, putting on your face, the whole bit. It would all have to be pretty strange for a guy.

Trying to stuff all of that into a guy’s head was a challenge. Male characters just don’t have the range of emotion for you to work with. I guess that’s part of what makes them guys. As Zane begins his transformation, everything he is grappling with bubbles to the top as a confused mix of humor and rage. After the change it’s like he’s got the hormones of a squad of teenage cheerleaders.

Yup, we finally get our revenge on the guys in The Twist :)

It's about time! :0) Why were you drawn to write a bio-technical romantic suspense?

You hear some strange things standing in the ladies’ room line on the Ocean City boardwalk. A cute little thing in a halter top and a pair of Daisy Dukes behind me was arguing with her purple-haired boy friend about her smoking. He was going on about what a filthy habit it was and how he might as well be kissing an ashtray. Fumbling in her purse for a Virginia Slim, all she could come up with in her defense was “You have no idea how hard it is for a girl to quit smoking!” I’ve always been fascinated by transformation stories, but they never seem to have a happy ending. Hum, it sounded like there was a story there to me.

The key to pulling off something as zany as a guy turning into a woman was to make it believable for the reader. As an engineer, I’m trained to come up with a way to make things work. The transformation in The Twist is pure sci-fi, but what if it were possible? My technical background gives me the tools to imagine and describe the things a scientist would need to actually make it happen.

I love your heroine, Kathy Davis! She is quick and witty and doesn't take any crap. How did you create her? What was your inspiration?

I’ve been a Charmed fan since day one. I even have a cool signed picture of Holly, Rose and Alyssa that I won on ebay! Alyssa Milano’s character Phoebe was my inspiration for Kathy. My characters are born from the faces of my personality. I’m like each and every one but not like any of them. There is a tiny seed of me in my characters that unfolds like a flower. They surprise me with the things they say and do, taking my writing to places I never could have gone by myself.

Zane met his match with Kathy in The Twist. He’s full of himself in a typical guy sort of way. But Kathy, with all her feminine charm, let Zane know from the minute they met at the elevator, she’d stand toe to toe with him for the full nine rounds. Its mutual respect like this that turns to love that will last a life time.

What are your working on now?

Well, right now I’m still trying to get caught up with everything I let slip around the house with the release! When I wrote The Twist, I had considered it to be a one book story. Working on my edits, I realized there might be enough open ends for another book. I just started working on a sequel so we can see what everybody's favorite feisty female scientist is up to next :)

I can't wait! How do you keep your creativity charged?

I’m always going off on these wild tangents. Maybe it’s lock picking, or the history of the bra or how they make balloons; I get absorbed in some pretty weird stuff. Whatever the flavor of the month happens to be, I learn absolutely everything I can about it for a couple of three weeks, then zip, I’m over it. Once you expand your head, you never look at the world quite the same way again.

Isn't that the truth?! What do you like to do when you aren't writing?

My parents used to have a travel trailer on the Delaware shore. I grew up outside of Philadelphia, so it was only about 3 hours away. We spent weekends there all summer long for years. I loved to go crabbing and fishing with my dad. LOL, I used to be such a tomboy! On rainy days, we’d all pile into my girlfriend’s mom’s old Buick station wagon. She’d haul us giggling and laughing into Ocean City, MD for pizza and let us go wild on the boardwalk.

I’ve been a car girl for as long as I can remember. I actually had a Suzuki 50 Trail Rider I used all through high school. I went everywhere on that darn thing! Somewhere along the line I realized that motorcycles and skirts don’t mix and got a blue MG Midget. My hubby is a car guy and we have a Model A hotrod. I’m not into all the grease and engine stuff but can hold a pretty mean flashlight. I love the people and the cruising. It gives me an excuse to get all dolled up and wear a pair of tight pants or a poodle skirt.

Anyway, my husband’s family also vacationed in Ocean City, and we went there with our son when he was growing up. We have our own place there now. It’s only a couple hours from Norfolk, VA, so we try to go whenever we can. I cherish our time in Ocean City. We both run so hard, it’s the only time we have for each other. I’m lucky to have a special place with so many memories from all the times of my life. I wish we could live there all the time.

I'm adding Ocean City to my "must visit" list! And a random question for you: Did you dress up for Halloween as a kid? If so, what was your favorite costume?

It was pretty rural once you got outside of Philadelphia when I was growing up, so we didn’t really dress for Halloween. I mean, like it’s not much fun walking two miles between neighbors for a Snickers bar :( I made up for lost time when I got to college. We used to start planning what we were going to be for Halloween as soon as we came back in the fall. I didn’t have a favorite costume, but I’ll never forget the year my girlfriend decided we were going to go as the Big Bad Wolf and one of the Three Little Pigs.

I still don’t know how I let her rope me into being the stupid pig! She got all dolled up in a dark brown leotard and 4” heels with this sassy little black leather mini, and dyed the playboy bunny ears she used the year before to match. A ton of hairspray and some of that cat grease make-up, and the guys were following her like a tail.

Oh, I wore a leotard and tights alright- bubblegum pink, with a pillow for a tummy and a pair of yucky black patent flats. And then there were those plastic alien ears and that rubber bald cap and the curly cue tail made out of pipe cleaners! At least you couldn’t tell it was me with that glue-on latex pig nose. Oink, oink, I was a real sight. You’ll have to trust me. I destroyed all the pictures :)

I'd pay good money to see that! :0) Thanks for being here with us Lee. And as Lee said, she's offering a copy of The Twist to one lucky Armchair Heroine. So make a comment, ask a question, share your thoughts! That's your ticket to the contest. :0)