The Licking Edge by Christy Gissendaner

In an effort to make up for skipping my last post, I decided to do something so spectacular that it would leave ya’ll in awe of my awesomeness. Yeah…I drew a blank.

Came up with nothing. Zilch. Zip. Nada.

But you know me, when all else fails, just write something silly and call it a day. So that’s what I’m doing.  As I surfed the internet for “random blog idea generator” (YES, they have them) I came across a site for “random title generator”.

Where was this when I was stuck on a name for In Too Deep? Thank heavens my pal Lynn Lorenz was around to help a gal out when it came time to create a new one for Did It All For The Wolfie. Yep, that was truly my working title. I still think it’s a cool title, but the powers that be outvoted me.

So back to this randomness of titles thingamabob. It sucked me in and I spent…oh…two hours or so getting a kick out of the names. Here’s a few of my favorites.

  1. The Licking Edge – So beyond fantastic that it became the title of this post! Even though it does make one think of envelopes and paper cuts on a tongue. (Been there, done that.)
  2. Bold Sword – Hmm…my mind is in the gutter. Let’s just leave that one alone.
  3. Snow in the Wife – Say what? I like kink, but come on now!
  4. The Time of Something – Well played, abstract novelist. Well played.
  5. The Cold Sex – See #3
  6. Future in the Children – *cue Whitney Houston* “I believe the children are our future.”
  7. Slithering Lover – I think I’ll pass…
  8. Teacher of Touch – Bad title, but it did give me a germ of a story idea.

Want to check out some titles on your own? Visit Meanwhile, I think I’d better stick to coming up with them the non-random way.


It’s live!! (and a giveaway!)

Hi naughty readers!! Things have been a little quiet around here this week, so I hope to liven it up with a $100 – that’s right a $100 gift card giveaway that starts in just a few days. Info can be found on Facebook here:

Please share! If you tweet about this boxed set, please include #MenAtWork, and we will retweet!

Occupational Hazard: The Ultimate Workplace Romance Box Set is available for pre-order NOW! Release date is next Tuesday, June 2!OccupationalHazardBundle_2500px

***All work and no play? No way! These TEN books by New York TimesUSA Today, and National Bestselling authors show how hot workplace romances can be. And the best part? It’s just $0.99! Don’t wait…it’s only available for a limited time, and then it’ll be back to business as usual.
Retail value of the individual books is over $25.00!

My Secretary, My Mistress – Eve Langlais 
Can a boss let go of his inhibitions and let his secretary take charge of him in the bedroom?

Yours to Take – Cathryn Fox 
Revenge takes on a sexy twist when a powerhouse lawyer is stripped of her control by the handsome multi-millionaire she once took down in the courtroom.

Against Company Policy – Mandy Harbin 
Cassie Tucker and Ian Cope know they should keep things professional on their new assignment, but when desire is faced with physical boundaries and company policy, it’s time to get a little creative…and a little kinky.

White Collar Cowboy – Parker Kincade 
Lauren Delgado has had a crush on Gavin Mathis for years, but has a strict “hand-off” policy with the men she works with. When her life takes an unexpected turn, there’s nothing to stop her from accepting Gavin’s invitation to his vacation home on Galveston Island … where she learns the policy is definitely hands-on.

Seducing Chase – Cassandra Carr 
When a doctor disappears with millions, can Val and Nate set aside their explosive attraction and save the hospital?

First Kiss – Ann Mayburn 
Ryan will never forgot that night in high school when he kissed Emma and lost his heart to her forever. Years later he finds Emma again, but now she’s a pro-Domme that refuses to fall in love. Ryan begins a campaign to win her reluctant heart, one night at a time.

Flirting with the Camera – Ros Clarke
Brilliant, beautiful and bigger than your average plus-size model, Hattie Bell can do anything she sets her mind to. After all, she’s just landed her dream job, modelling for top photographer, Tom Metcalfe. So her next goal should be a piece of cake: getting Tom to break his strict rule against workplace romances…

No Restraints – Lilly Cain
Bad girl Selene Carter will do anything to save her business, even team up with the cop who stole her heart. But can Detective Tom Barker help when he knows she’s no innocent?

Pleasing Sir – Delilah Devlin
Raelie might be a submissive in search of just the right Dom, but she’s not the kind to sit back and wait for the right man to happen. When she gets the chance to fill in as Bryce Caldwell’s executive assistant, she decides some subtle seduction is needed to see if he dominates the bedroom the same way he does the office.

Shadowboxer – Cari Quinn
She’s in for the fight of her life…with the man who only wants to be her lover.

Pre-order/Buy links to the box set:






Happy reading!

Until next time …

In Memory Of

Today is mourningMemorial Day in the United States. The day we set aside to honor and thank those dedicated, courageous men and women who have died while protecting our country, our rights, and our freedom.

Our armed forces are second to none.

It’s a Sunday tradition for the dh and I to watch This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Toward the end of the show, the names of all those who died in service are listed on the screen. I make it a point to read each and every name and say a prayer for all of our fallen soldiers.

I am so pleased to tell you that during the last couple of months, we have gone three weeks in a row without a single name being listed.

We can honor those who’ve fallen and remember via social media. Post a blog, or a story on Facebook. Pin a quote about a loved one who’s no longer with youed on Pinterest – search on Memorial Day Quotes.

Share a Moment on Twitter – share a memory of a loved one who served in the military, your grandfather, great uncle, son, or husband: #USOMoments

In memory of those who’ve died serving this nation.


Query help and a submissions call

Sorry for the late post, folks. Life is quite hectic around here these days. Not only are the Mancinis finally wrapping up home renovations, but my retired mother just moved in with us, and the kids are about to finish another glorious school year meaning we are busy lining up summer activities and beginning an whole new schedule juggling process.

Oh, yeah, and I finally graduated with my MS in Publishing!! Hellz yeah. (I know I’ve said that a few times, but it hasn’t gotten old yet!)

Today I’m going to slip behind the purple velvety curtain and share the spotlight with a dear friend of mine who is so amazing, so incredibly sexy, so brilliantly funny… Okay. It’s me. Today, I’m coming here as the real me: Marci Boudreaux Clark, Content/Developmental and Acquisitions editor for Lyrical Press, an imprint of Kensington Publishing Corp.

As an acquisitions editor, I see a lot of queries come in that aren’t ready to be seen by an editor. There are three pretty common mistakes that make me decline a manuscript.The thing is, these three things can be easily corrected by the author if s/he only took the time and effort to correct them.

If you are an author submitting books and getting rejected, take a step back and see if any of these apply to you.

  1. When writing your synopsis/query, know who your audience is. Don’t write a query focusing on a crime story if you are submitting to a romance imprint. If your book focuses on crime with little to no romance, it isn’t a romance book and shouldn’t be subbed to a romance imprint. If your book is a romance with crime, don’t write your query focused on the crime. Romance is about the characters and their relationships, tell me about that.
  2. Make it clean. If the author can’t write one cohesive page, I’m going to assume s/he can’t write 100+ cohesive pages. If all I see in a query is bad grammar and misspellings, it’s not going to convince me to read the synopsis, let alone the manuscript. Edit your query before sending it so you can offer the editor the very best representation of your work possible.
  3. Don’t submit your book until it has been through a beta reader/editor. Or three. And I don’t mean someone who will tell you how great your story is. Give it to someone who will tell you the parts that need work, who will point out holes in your plot, and who will tell you when your characters actions/words/motives don’t add up. And then give it to someone else to do the same. Why? Because if you have a fantastic story but halfway through there’s a big plot hole or you alter the history, I might…MIGHT…ask you to rewrite and resubmit. Or, I might just pass on it. It really depends on how big the hole is and how many inconsistencies I find. Those are things that should be found and pointed out by beta readers so they never make it to the acquisitions editor.

So what makes for a great query/synopsis?  For me, I want one that grabs my attention right from the start. Give me emotions and depth, not skimming over the top of the water. Give me something to sink my teeth into.

Right now I am looking for contemporary romance with strong characters, story, and emotions. I will take anything from sweet to super hot and any couples combinations. I prefer third person past tense, but will consider first person if the story and writing is solid.

The biggest thing I am looking for in a submission is one that will make me feel something. I like to laugh, cry, and scream at my books. I’m emotional and I like books that make me emotional, even if that emotion is anger or frustration (because of the great story, not the bad writing, please!).

I will consider anything over 25K including series and stand-alone. Please note that paranormal isn’t my thing and I’m not crazy about historicals. I don’t have anything against those genres, it’s simply my personal reading preference. However, if your story (read: romance/characterization) is strong enough, I’ll consider any genre.

So, if you’ve done all of the things listed above and you feel like your manuscript is ready, e-mail your query, synopsis, and completed manuscript to marci (dot) clark (dot) editing (at) gmail (dot) com and let me know you saw my submission call on Love, Lust & Laptops so I know that you took the time to knock out those three things that will make me decline you right away. Please include the following, as listed on the Kensington site, with your query:

  • Legal name
  • Pseudonym (if applicable)
  • Contact phone
  • Publishing history (if applicable)
  • Working title (include series name if applicable)
  • Word count
  • Genre(s)
  • Blurb (no more than three paragraphs, please)

Happy writing!


Blog Abbreviated Due to … Lightning!

259-1212725600qf0eOkay, kids.  This is my blogging day.  I really hadn’t a clue about what to blog, but I would have found something.  Really. And it would’ve been long, funny, informative, and fabulous.

Then … it rained.  And I mean rain with lightning, thunder, wind, hail, flood warnings … locusts, pestilence, and thirty days and nights of darkness — okay, I added those last three for the heck of it.  But I was accurate up through and including the flood warnings. 🙂

Um, the picture is not mine, but a free stock image. I stay away from the windows during violent storms. But that is the kind of lightning I saw as I hurried to get home  from my Pilates class. I got my 1999 Volvo into the garage before the hail hit. Whew! Old Bessie doesn’t need anymore dents. (Yes, I name my car.)

This afternoon (yesterday for you reading this on Thursday, May 22nd), my area of Indiana has experienced the fabulous “training effect” of storms.  One after another strong storm, with all of the above but for the locusts, pestilence, and 30 days and nights of darkness, has blown over my little abode — and is not going to stop until later tonight with chances of more lovely storms tomorrow (that would be Thursday, May 22nd).

So, I am currently typing as fast as I can between storms.  I do not want my computer on or even plugged in.  The last electrical storm we had blew out my son’s very expensive desk top.

That is not gonna be me.

I have my next Prime book on my desk top.  Yes, it is backed up on an external hard disk and a jump drive — both of which are attached to electrical things – – and thank the Lord, on Dropbox, which is, I’m sure — but not totally– backed up somewhere in case their server is fried.  But I don’t take chances.

So, this is my blog. Sorry, it wasn’t about anything world-changing or exciting or my next book.  Catch me week after next, I’ll post a tempting excerpt from my soon-to-be-done Prime Imperative — which would’ve been done today, but for the damn electrical storm.

Stay safe everyone. Mother Nature is in a pissy-ass mood this year.


Facebook groups: are you pro or con?

As an author, I can personally attest to the fact that there are few places where we can promote our books and share our news, especially for free. Many of us have joined Facebook groups that cater to one genre or another, and those groups kindly allow us to post excerpts/teasers/links. Hopefully, readers tune in, see something they like and one-click us. It’s all good, right? Readers find new reads and authors, and authors find new readers.

Well, sometimes. When the universe is in happy alignment.

There are many out there who feel the only people who frequent Facebook groups are other authors. If that’s the case, we’re not exactly hitting our target market. However, I have met many readers and bloggers through these venues, and people have told me they’ve purchased one of my books after reading my teasers. Even still, is this the ideal environment for us to post, or are we simply preaching to the choir?

I am one of the mods in the Heroes Wanted group, run by the ladies of Love, Lust and Laptops. I have also begun a very successful and fun group called Shifter and Vamp Romance, catering specifically to shape shifter and vampire books. Through these groups and others, I have been able to connect with many readers and have had a lot of fun too.

Then there are days when I feel I am spinning my wheels, posting and posting, wondering if anyone notices. And with the new Facebook policies, links might not appear on a feed for hours, if not days. To say nothing of the fact that authors need to play a delicate balancing game while promoting. Don’t promote too much; people get angry. And yet, if you don’t promote, no one will discover you.

So what’s a hardworking author to do? There have been times when I’ve been tempted to scrap all my groups. I certainly know authors who do no promoting whatsoever, and yet they still sell books. Nowadays we’re expected to have some sort of online presence, so I try to engage via my groups and pages. I enjoy it. My own readers have followed me and have been wonderful, sharing my posts.

But am I reaching that all-important new reader? I have yet to figure it out.

Are you a reader? Do you rely on Facebook groups to keep you posted on new reads?

Are you an author? Have FB groups been a successful tool for you? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Interview with L. Marie Adeline…S.E.C.R.E.T. Revealed!

I can barely restrain my inner fan girl today. Here for a special Q&A, we have bestselling author, and fellow Canadian, L. Marie Adeline, the author of the smash hit S.E.C.R.E.T. series!

It wasn’t long ago that I picked up the first book in this extraordinary series, S.E.C.R.E.T. I was immediately hooked and dove right into book 2 S.E.C.R.E.T. Shared. Book 3, S.E.C.R.E.T. Revealed has just been released, and my hands are itching. I can promise you this trilogy will not disappoint. Set in New Orleans, it is the tale of Cassie, a lonely woman who stumbles upon a rather unusual society of women. Her life is forever changed.

I’m so pleased L. Marie Adeline has answered some questions for us today, and to make the occasion even more exciting, she is doing a giveaway of several S.E.C.R.E.T. bracelets (North American giveaway only, please).

So pull up a chair as L. Marie tells us how S.E.C.R.E.T. came to be.


When I set out to write my erotic romance trilogy, S.E.C.R.E.T., the Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon was at a fever pitch. And though I understand the appeal of those books, I really wanted to toss something new into the mix. Something fantastical and fun, something involving real people—restaurant workers, lounge singers, journalists, shop keepers—something erotic but still pro-women, pro-men, pro-adult sex. My erotica had to dovetail with my own beliefs, or I couldn’t do it.

I came up with the idea of S.E.C.R.E.T., a trilogy about an underground group of women who grant one lucky female candidate her wildest sexual fantasies for one year, each fantasy growing in intensity, each designed to teach her a little bit more about her self, helping her develop more courage and confidence as she goes along. It’s the healing side of great sex, minus obsessive “love” and inner goddesses.

That’s how Cassie Robichaud, Dauphine Mason, and my newest star candidate Solange Faraday, who you’ll meet in S.E.C.R.E.T. Revealed, came to be. But I wasn’t sure the search for personal fulfillment, true love and sexual ecstasy would break through. (Heads up, the only sexy billionaire in my book is feckless, and it’s 100% virgin-free. Also, ‘domination’ is only one of the many sexual flavors on offer.)

However, my trilogy did break through, climbing towards the top of bestseller charts in some of the thirty-plus countries that publish it. I thought it hit a nerve because of the hot sex. But S.E.C.R.E.T.’s growing readership tell me they love that my books feature real women, most of them over thirty, struggling with real relationship issues, in a real city, New Orleans. Mostly readers tell me they love the fact that my books are as racially diverse as the city itself. And since I’ve written a couple of well-received literary novels under my real name, Lisa Gabriele, I care deeply about plot, authenticity, great dialogue and pacing.

At the core of each S.E.C.R.E.T. installment is also a love story, and as each character wends their way towards their happily ever after, each grapples with very real questions that every woman faces: What do I really want from sex and love? Is this the right person for me? Do we have what it takes to make it last? Can I satisfy this person completely? Should I? Am I enough? I hope you enjoy my trilogy about three very different women, with very different sexual histories and appetites, each finding the love (and mind-blowing sex) they didn’t even know they were looking for. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did writing these books. And though I’m sad they’ve come to an end, it’s nice to have the complete set. So if you’ve been curious, join in on the S.E.C.R.E.T. And if you’re a fan already, my sincerest gratitude. I couldn’t persevered without you.


Rosanna Leo) As authors, we often intersperse some of our own traits in our characters. How much of you resides in heroine Cassie Robichaud?

L. Marie Adeline) To be honest, I’m nothing like Cassie, who is meek and mild and cowed by life after a long marriage to an abusive man. I am pretty bold and bossy and would never have put up with what Cassie put up with. (BTW: I would also never ban the word bossy! I loved being called that as a kid!) But I can certainly relate to her insecurities. No woman feels 100% hot all the time. We all need a little boost, a little support now and again. And S.E.C.R.E.T. aims to provide that.

RL) You are a Canadian author (go, Canuck smut!). What led you to choose New Orleans as a setting?

LMA) I chose New Orleans because it’s a naturally sensual setting: the food, the music and the city has a steamy Southern atmosphere. It just sets the mood. I love Canada, don’t get me wrong, but half the year it’s cold, very cold, so getting naked is not high up there with desirable activities. Plus I had a boyfriend from  Louisiana and we used to spend time in that city. I just fell in love.

RL) Obviously readers have responded to your work. What sorts of comments have you received from readers? Do they wish S.E.C.R.E.T. existed? (Because I’m really hoping it has its basis in fact-LOL)

LMA) YES! I get that all the time, testament, I think to striking a balance between fantasy and reality, and how hard it is for some women to realize their sexual desires. For some that wish is very real. I even get comments from readers who believe it exists! I think it’s because the group is comprised of normal women who live and work in a real city. That was the trick, I think.

RL) I loved the addition of Dauphine’s story in book 2, S.E.C.R.E.T. Shared. Will we see another new heroine in book 3?

LMA) Oh yes! I can’t wait for readers to meet Solange Faraday, a 40-something  headstrong TV journalist who has a hard time surrendering to S.E.C.R.E.T. She really lives in her head, and is a control-freak, so among all the characters, she’s the one I relate to the most. She’s also a single mother who has put her sex life on the back burner, something I think a lot of readers will relate to.

RL) I adore Will and Cassie. Without giving away too much, what can readers expect in the third book?

LMA) More Cassie and Will, of course, and more Jesse. This is not going to be an easy Happily Ever After to get to, and hearts will be broken. But Cassie ends up with the right man for her, as do other women in the book—including Solange of course, and Matilda!

RL) What is next for L. Marie Adeline?

LMA) I am working on a small novel under my own name Lisa Gabriele, and of course, I’m still working in TV and radio, with projects lined up in both media. Though I am relieved to have the trilogy complete,  I am planning on writing more erotic romances. They’re so much fun! I just hope readers who’ve stuck it out this long will accompany me to the end of S.E.C.R.E.T. Revealed. It’ll have all been worth it, I promise.


SECRET Revealed bares all—the final book in the hot bestselling series.

The only thing that Cassie Robichaud has ever really wanted is Will Foret, the love of her life. But when Will discovers that Cassie is part of S.E.C.R.E.T., an underground group devoted to helping women experience their deepest sexual fantasies, Will breaks it off. Heartbroken, Cassie dries her tears and devotes herself to helping the latest S.E.C.R.E.T. recruit, Solange Faraday. Cassie also reignites her relationship with sexy bad-boy Jesse, even if he can never love her as deeply as Will did.

Meanwhile, beautiful, brilliant Solange, a local news anchor and divorced mom, has a great career but a wilting love life. She rekindles long-lost passions, going deeper and hotter than any other S.E.C.R.E.T. candidate before her. Will Can Solange find what her heart most desires? And when Will realizes he’s made a tragic mistake, will Cassie be able to forgive him? In the end, As both women blossom sexually as sexual beings, they also discover that ecstasy and true love is are closer than they ever imagined.

SECRET Revealed is the explosive, sensual and sexually-charged finale to the bestselling S.E.C.R.E.T. trilogy.

L. Marie, thank you so much for joining the ladies of Love, Lust and Laptops. Your books will always been on my favorites shelf and I know the same goes for many of our readers.

For a chance to win a S.E.C.R.E.T. bracelet, comment here and tell us which of the S.E.C.R.E.T. fantasy scenarios appealed to you most. If you haven’t read the books, tell us what your secret fantasy would be! Don’t forget to leave an email address where you can be contacted.