Friday, February 22, 2013

Nancy Lee Badger Interviews Ute Carbone

Today I am interviewing author Ute Carbone. Her book, Afterglow, was released January 7th.
Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.  
Afterglow is the story of India Othmar, a woman of a certain age who has left her philandering husband after thirty years of marriage. India’s best friend, Eva, wants to fix her up with every odd ball in their small Massachusetts town. Her grown children have moved home. And her only romance these days is with Cherry Garcia. India’s more resilient than she gives herself credit for being, though. It takes a broken arm, some creative uses for shoes, a lawn littered with engine parts and an affair with much younger man to help her realize that her life hasn’t ended with her marriage.
Describe the genre of this particular title, and is the only genre you write in?
This book is a romantic comedy. I love writing rom coms, but in a broader sense I write women’s fiction. I have a more serious literary women’s fiction, Blueberry Truth, on my backlist as well as a time travel romance novella. Upcoming are both a new rom com and another women’s fiction title, as well as a historical romance novella—which is a departure for me, but I loved the challenge.  
When did you start writing toward publication?
I started writing seriously about fifteen years ago. I got some poems and short pieces published. Books came a bit later, I finished a first novel about eight years ago. For a long time, I was more invested in writing and learning fiction than in publication. Eventually, though, I did try and get things pubbed. My first book came out in August of 2011.
Did you have several manuscripts finished before you sold? If so, did you send them out yourself?
Yes. I still have a few collecting dust. Blueberry Truth, my debut novel, was actually the fourth novel I’d written. Years ago, small pubs weren’t a viable option. I like having a publishing house behind my work. I like knowing someone thought enough of it to pick it up and I like having a professional editor to help me polish the book.
Why have you become a published author?   
I wanted to share the stories I’d written. Writing a book you don’t plan to share with readers is like baking a cake just for yourself. It can be done, of course, but some things are better if you share them.
Do you have any rejection stories to share?
I’ve gotten lots and lots of rejection over the years. It’s kind of writer’s badge of honor to have them. The best was an agent who read the manuscript on my very first novel. I was pretty green then and really didn’t know what I was doing in terms of submissions. He wrote me a very sweet letter that said, basically, it’s me not you. It felt a little like he was breaking up with me.
What is your writing routine like?
If I manage a thousand words a day I consider it a success. I am persistent, though. I try to write something every day.
Wow! I love days when nothing interrupts me and I get lots of pages written or edited. After publication, what sort of promo do you do? Do you have help?
I don’t have help. I could use help, though. Any volunteers?? J  I have a website that I try to keep current and a blog. I’m also on facebook and twitter. Lately, I’ve done a few bookstore readings—I really like meeting readers in person.
Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?  
When a reader contacts me to say how much they enjoyed my book. Blueberry Truth is about fostering a child and I’ve had a few readers share their own experiences of fostering with me. That’s very gratifying.   
Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped?
I don’t belong to any large organizations at present. More locally, I belong to the New Hampshire Writer’s Project, which has lots of workshops and resources for writers. Other authors in the publishing houses I work with also offer up a wealth of experience and information.
My first writer's workshop was held in New Hampshire. It was awesome! Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract? 
Keep trying. Rejection sucks and everybody hates it. But if you really want it, you need to keep at it. Work on making your writing the best it can be. Keep perfecting. Be stubborn, don’t let no stop you from working towards the yes that you want. 
Stubborn? My husband has called me inflexible and mulish, but I think those are necessary traits for a writer.What’s next for you?
I’ve got several projects in the works, including another romantic comedy and a full length women’s fiction with a strong love story. I’m also doing a lot of editing at present. I’ve got another rom com, Searching for Superman, coming out this summer, along with a historical romance novella, Sweet Lenora, and a trilogy of short love stories, I’ll be seeing you.
India Othmar isn’t having a great year. Her husband of thirty-one years has left her for their son’s ex-girlfriend. Her grown children have moved home. Her best friend Eva seems determined to set her up with every oddball in their small Massachusetts town. And her most significant relationship these days is with Cherry Garcia.

But India is more resilient than she thinks. And though it will take a broken arm, a lawn littered with engine parts, some creative uses for shoes, and a scandalous love affair of her own, she learns, much to her surprise, that her life hasn’t ended with her marriage.
My first affair with Cherry Garcia lasted nearly three weeks. It ended when my best friend, Eva, threw a shoe at my head. My Reebok sneaker to be exact. “Enough,” said Eva from the bedroom door. “You cannot wallow forever. Besides which, I am getting very
tired of walking alone. I’ve started talking to myself, for God's sake. I’ve started talking to the dogs along the way.” She raised her arms like a conductor ready to strike up the band. “Get your hiney downstairs in five minutes or I will dress you myself.” She turned with runway model flourish and sauntered away. I do mean sauntered. Eva was nothing if not dramatic.
I should never have given Eva a key to my house. But I had, and she repaid my trust by yelling up the stairs, “Five minutes, India,” as though it were a curtain call.
    Knowing that there was not the slightest chance that she’d give up and go away, I got up, dug my oldest sweats from the bottom of the hamper, and put on both sneakers.
    “You look like misery’s leftovers,” Eva said when I came down the stairs. I gave her what I thought was a smoldering look, though in truth I don’t smolder well.
    “Let’s just get on with it,” I said.
    We walked the same route we’d walked nearly every day for twenty-five years, discounting my cha cha with Cherry Garcia. It was about two miles long, this walk, down Queen’s Boulevard, along Park Street to Third Avenue, down McKinley past the elementary
 school, and back around to Easterly Street, where Eva and I resided in side by side Dutch colonials, mine with a maple in front, hers with a willow to the side, at numbers 140 and 142.
    “You know what you need?” Eva said as we rounded the corner on McKinley. “You need a night out.”
    “I don’t need a night out. I can barely handle in.”
    We’d just passed the gold brick of McKinley Elementary where I had taught kindergarten for twenty years, ever since my daughter, Allie, had started school. We’d trekked out together, Allie and I, all those years ago. Up until my unfortunate fall in with Ben and Jerry’s, I’d kept trekking along, as trusting as those kids in my class.
    “Mrs. Othmar!” Jenny cute-as-a-bunny Mantillo came bounding down off her porch as we walked by. “You’re feeling better! Mrs. Langtree said you’d feel better and then you’d come back to school.” Jenny started walking with us, backward, “Guess what? We got a new puppy. His name is Delmar and maybe, can I bring him in for show and tell?”
    “Of course, Jenny. As long as someone’s there to take him home.”
    “Oh, Mommy will. I know she will. And Mrs. Othmar? We made you a big card that says welcome back when you come back.”
    “Are you going back?” Eva asked after Jenny bounded back up to her porch.
    “Yes. Probably. I think so.”
    “You know, I don’t envy you your job. God only knows how you deal with a roomful of snot-nosed carpet rats all day long. But you love that job.”
    We walked past the tennis courts, where the Saturday morning enthusiasts were out enjoying the first of the warm weather. Where my husband, Tom, had played tennis on Saturday mornings with our son, Patch. My soon-to-be ex-husband, Tom. And my dear, soon-to-be-if-not-already devastated son, Patch. I walked a little faster, trying to outrace these last thoughts. Eva kept pace. I was glad she wasn’t a mind reader. In fact, she was on a different wavelength all together. “What exactly did you tell Lila Stroud as far as your little absence is concerned?” She marked absence with imaginary quotation marks.
    “I told her I had tuberculosis.”
    “You didn’t, not that old Lila couldn’t use a little shaking up. But India. Well, it’s brilliant, I’ll give you that.”
    Actually, I’d told Lila, the principal at McKinley, that I wasn’t well and needed some time. Since Tamsett is a small town, where gossip travels faster than electricity, it’s not much of stretch to imagine she knew exactly why I needed time.
    “Looking at you, though, I might think tuberculosis myself,” Eva said
    “I’m just taking some time. I’m allowed to take some time.”
    “So? What? You’re going to lie in bed scarfing saturated fat until you die? You have got to get yourself out of this funk. I can’t be dragging you out of bed every day.”
    “I came, didn’t I?” I pointed to my feet. “See? Sneakers. I’m walking.” I did a couple of exaggerated marching steps to illustrate my point.
    “Its a star,” Eva said.
More About the Author
Ute, who pronounces her name oohtah, was born in Germany and grew up in upstate New York. She and her husband reside in Nashua, NH. They have two grown sons. Ute enjoys hiking, skiing, and generally anything that involves being outside. She loves chocolate, wine, and, of course, books.
Books by Ute Carbone:
For more about Ute and her books, Please Visit:

WEBSITE   BLOG   Facebook  
How can my readers buy your book?  Readers can go to the publisher’s home page at
Check out my BOOK TRAILER too!

Nancy Lee Badger Interviews Ute Carbone


Friday, February 15, 2013

Nancy Lee Badger Interviews Tessa Stockton

Joining me today is author Tessa Stockton. Her book, Wind’s Aria, is a fantasy romance eNovella and was released on January 16, 2013.
Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.  
Guest Author Tessa Stockton
It’s a classic “conflicted, gorgeous monster obsessed with good, unlikely heroine”—only with some twists. Some might call inspirational, others mythical.

Well, I am inspired to read it! Explain the genre of this particular title, and is the only genre you write in?
Wind’s Aria is a fantasy romance and the first installment of an eNovella series. I love writing in this genre. There is something so freeing and creative about it. Anything goes. Still, I’m all over the map when it comes to genres. I have three books published thus far. One is a political intrigue/romance, another a suspense/thriller, and then I have Wind’s Aria. They are all pretty diverse in plot, structure, and even literary voice. I like variety. My reading habits reflect this, as well. Today, in addition to continuing my fantasy romance series, I’m currently working on a paranormal romance, and an international crime fiction title. I’m ever rotating the pots on the stove, keeping it all warm and succulent. : )
Me too! I write what 'moves me'.When did you start writing toward publication? 
I began pursuing it seriously in 2001. While I’ve had articles and a few short stories published, and I was a columnist, it took me almost ten years to get a novel published. It’s not an easy path. There are a lot of challenges, rejections, and it’s time consuming. Good thing I don’t mind all of that. Those closest to me didn’t call me Tenacious Tessa for nothing while growing up. Plus, now we have the do-it-yourself revolution. Whichever way you go, it requires a tremendous amount of dedication.
So true. Did you have several manuscripts finished before you sold like I did? If so, did you send them out yourself?
Oh yeah. And, yes. I have no representation. I am my own agent. Rejection is a regular part of this trade. You have to learn how to receive the nays, determine whether you need to rework manuscripts (because every person, reader/editor, has a different opinion), and keep moving ahead. You won’t get anywhere unless you move forward. Keep in mind, there are always ways to improve.
Rejections can make our work stronger. So can other authors. Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped?
I’ve enjoyed memberships in a handful of writing organizations. When I discovered Romance Writers of America, though, it was like finding the link I knew was missing. The organization offers a tremendous trove of information, has various special interest chapters, such as Fantasy- Futuristic & Paranormal, and focuses on and encourages those who strive to do this for a living. They support every genre under the romantic sun—or moon, for darkness lovers. Honestly, I don’t know how I managed before RWA. And to name a few more, I find IndieRomanceInk a good way to connect. Also I’ve gleaned a lot of insight in the business sense from LinkedIn’s Authors of Romance Helping Authors of Romance. Through these and other similar groups, I learn something new everyday, hear about other authors, and connect in neat ways. Networking is vital in the romance world, in my opinion.
Another reason why I love to host other authors on my blog. What’s next for you?
Finishing that next mind-blowing, heart-stopping title!
Elected as the Songstress, Aria takes her place on the sacred platform to sing before every dawn. As long as she does so, peace and abundant life belong to her people. One morning, amidst a strange wind that brings with it a curse in its eerie howl, Aria loses her ability to make music. But the encroaching death that transpires isn’t her biggest tragedy. It’s that she adores the cause of her blunder, for he’s a magnificent winged creature who’s stolen more than her voice.
EXCERPT from Wind’s Aria
“Who are you?”
He pushed further back into the shadows as she strode closer. “Someone you need not know.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
When he didn’t answer, she sighed.
“What a strange, terrible day,” she mumbled. “Well, at least tell me your name . . .”
He stood, speechless, knowing he shouldn’t be there at all—conversing with a Meleyan—especially not their musical deliverer that he was set to doom the day after tomorrow.
A peculiar grumbling interrupted her insistence, to his relief.
“Sorry.” She patted her stomach. He could see, even in the blackened night, how her face turned a deeper shade of red than her hair. “I’ve forgotten to eat. I guess I’m hungrier than I realized.”
He plucked an apple from the tree he’d nearly become a part of and held it out to her. The girl approached tentatively. She reached for the fruit but recoiled when her fingers brushed his.
“Is touching me so horrible?” he asked.
Her jaw dropped open and her delicate brow furrowed. She inclined her head. “It . . . hurt.”
“How?” he asked, for her fingers felt good to him, soothing. Warm. He wanted to try again.
Tessa is a veteran of the performing arts and worldwide missions, having come from a long line of musical arts professionals. She loved seeing the world and absorbing the beauty of other cultures . . . an enriching life full of dance, music, faith, and interesting cuisine. Over the years, she also contributed as a writer/editor for ministry publications, ghostwriter for political content, and headed a column on the topic of forgiveness. Today, she writes romance and intrigue novels in a variety of genres. You can also find out more information about Tessa Stockton and her eNovella, Wind’s Aria, by visiting:
WEBSITE   Facebook    Twitter   LinkedIn    Goodreads      
How can my readers buy your book? 
Soulmate Publishing         AMAZON          NOOK

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Nancy Lee Badger Interviews C. T. Nicholson

I have something very special for you today. Joining me is Debut Author C.T. Nicholson. Her first published book, Aiden's Betrayal is a Paranormal Romance and was released by Rebel Ink on February 3, 2013.
How exciting to have another opportunity to interview a newly published author! I remember my first book, back in 2010, and how 'getting the word out' was a new experience. Please tell my readers a little bit about your book.
Aiden's Betrayal is the first in the Guardians of the Society series. Aiden is a vampire who's already lost his mate and not expecting to meet a human who captures his attention. Elle is a simple human who just wants to keep living her boring life. Then she meets Aiden who's a vampire just like the one who killed her parents and he drags her into a world full of action and danger.
Describe the genre of this particular title, and is the only genre you write in?  
This is my paranormal romance and Forbidden Attraction, that's set to release in April, is my Sci-fi romance. I write romance only, but I am actually working on what I call my 'normal' book since there's nothing paranormal or sci-fi about it. It does have some sexy men in it!
Sexy men? Normal, I like! When did you start writing toward publication?
I only started writing three years ago with a few spaces in between. I never expected to be published and it's been a very unreal experience.
I grew up reading 'Drug Store Romance' and decided I could write like those authors only better. How did you get into romance writing?
Romance is all there is for me. I've never thought of writing or reading anything different. I'll love any book or movie as long as it has a good love story to it.
Who first introduced you to the love of reading?
I really didn't read much when I was younger, but when I was about seventeen, I was reading short Silhouette/Harlequin books and then my grandmother told me about different vampire books. I was skeptical at first and now that's practically all I read.
What do you see ahead in your writing career?
More writing! I want to further myself in my writing skills and become a bestselling writer one day. And I want to walk into a store and be like OMG that's my book! If they still have paperbacks by then.
Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract? 
Keep writing no matter what. Set your goal and keep at it. (Thanks to Terry Spear for telling me that) I read my writing and either hate it or love it, so don't freak out if you're not happy with it. Just take a step back and it'll come to you.
Terry Spear is a fabulous author and teacher, and has helped me, too! What’s next for you?
I'm working on sequels to Aiden's Betrayal and Forbidden Attraction. I'm super excited to finish my 'normal' book and let people read it. I'm having so much fun writing it! 


Aiden is a vampire, a Guardian for the Society, who spends his nights hunting down vampires who've turned rogue. He meets Elle, a human, the first woman to get his attention after losing his mate.

Elle's a simple human who runs a bed and breakfast and ends up being dragged to a club with her friend. When she meets Aiden, he draws her to him like no other man ever has, but everything changes when she realizes he's a vampire. Just like the one who killed her family and nearly killed her.

As fate intervenes, Aiden ends up bringing Elle into his world to protect her from a rogue who hunts them and both woman and vampire must adjust. Aiden has to get over his fear of losing another mate and Elle has get over her fear of vampires.

Show le
A little bit about the author

C.T. Nicholson juggles raising two kids with her husband, a full time job, and still manages to get her writing done. Sometimes she even manages to get some sleep . . . sometimes. Writing and becoming a published author is a recent dream come true. Most of what she reads revolves around paranormal and sci-fi romance, and her writing follows the same path. The fun of weaving new worlds and species into existence is her true calling. She's a romantic to the core and wants nothing more than a happy ending. And of course hot men! You can find more information about C.T. Nicholson and her book, Aiden's Betrayal by visiting:

WEBSITE         BLOG       Facebook       Goodreads   
How can my readers buy your book?  


Saturday, February 9, 2013

The JABBIC Reader’s Choice Cover Contest closes FEBRUARY 10TH.

JABBIC stands for
Judge A Book By Its Cover.
My book
is in the
Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Paranormal category and I could use your vote.
and make my day!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Nancy Lee Badger says "Do it"

Stinson Lake, Rumney, NH photo by Nancy Lee Badger
I heard this saying the other day
(author unknown) and I immediately
felt it was talking to me...

The world is so fast
there are days when
the person who says
"it can't be done"
is interrupted by
the person doing it.
The words make me want to
get my head in the game and write.
How about you?

Friday, February 1, 2013

Nancy Lee Badger Interviews David Russell

David Russell
David Russell has kindly ‘crossed the pond’ to chat with me about his contemporary romance, Self’s Blossom.
I love that you hail from London. The internet has opened the world to international discovery of authors like you and like me. Please tell my readers a little bit about your book. 

David- Well...check out this review...

Queen of Tarts Review of  Self’s Blossom by David Russell

I sometimes felt like I was watching a foreign film or an art house movie and that I was missing some of the complexities of the narrative. I finished this book uncertain as to what the heroine had discovered about herself. But I could still appreciate the beautiful pictures the author paints with his words and his unique approach to storytelling .
Self’s Blossom is all about Selene and her long awaited, scrimped and saved for, holiday. I connected with Selene on a few levels. She’s a workaholic. She’s single and busy moving through life. And I admired her desire to seek out new experiences and learn new things. I didn’t always like her. But I appreciated her intelligence and that she was unashamedly confident in herself and determined to follow through on her decisions.
She uses her vacation to try and break out of the rut she feels her life has become and fling caution to the wind. To have adventures and a passionate affair… or two. Her stay is at a resort in Central America. There are beautiful descriptions of the ocean waves and the lush paradise and how they relate to life and love, lust and passion. And then there are all the characters she meets on holiday and how they help or hinder her journey.  
Nancy-Describe the genre of this particular title, and is it the only genre you write in?
David-My work has been described as literary erotica. I also do speculative fiction, poetry and literary journalism.
Nancy-I wrote poetry in college in the 70s. Little did I know it would morph into novels published since 2010. When did you start writing toward publication?
David-Back in the 60s.
Nancy-Why have you become a published author?
David-I feel it vindicates my worth.  
Nancy-I tell people this is my 4th job, and the first (and last) career. I write fulltime from home, and love it. What is your writing routine like?
David-I operate on flexi-time; I have to be constantly with priorities.
Nancy-My hubby thinks he is a priority (he is) but I get more writing done when he’s at work. What sort of promo do you do? Do you have help?
David-I do my own via the net – blogs and review sites.
Nancy-I hope inviting you here, today, helps. Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?
David-Getting feedback from intelligent readers.
Nancy-Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract? 
David-Be tenacious; believe in yourself. Always be prepared to revise. If you get scathing criticism, analyze it carefully.
Nancy-I agree. I received two rejection letters in January. I will not trash that manuscript, but give it another look, then send it out again. What’s next for you?
David-A couple of short stories, to be published by Devine Destinies.
Nancy-That is great! I hope you will return and tell us about those books when they are released.
Self’s Blossom BOOK BLURB
This is about a young woman's self-discovery. Selene is a 'success story', having become a top journalist, while retaining her dazzling looks. However, in the past she has had unhappy relationships, and feels she has missed out on hedonistic fun.  This she obtains, firstly with a young stranger on a beach, and finally with enigmatic Hudson: tryst is preceded by cultural tourism, and careful sizing up of minds. Afterwards Selene returns to her 'I stand on my own' attitude.
While she is on holiday, her mind is free to ramble, often into Selene's chequered past. Flashback blurs into the present, past-rooted interior monologue into direct observation. The dialogue is sparse. Selene is a cautious, premeditative type, in whom thought, reflection and analysis outweigh direct action.
Selene’s subtle, monitoring mind coolly observes and controls all the events. Maybe she is super-confident, or perhaps has a deep, underlying insecurity. She is many things to many readers.
Here, she was on a beach, pure and simple. Now the sea breathed heavily,
whispering and murmuring to her. It was returning her stare, speaking to
her. It was the spirit of love, beckoning her with a pulsing, sinewy body.
In all its lines, shades, and fleeting forms, Selene saw the essence of pure
beauty, all grace of form, flesh, limb and feature. It was in one, all the
lovers of whom she could possibly dream, conflated into one elemental ideal.
He, pure love in soul, bade her to enter his domain and make it hers. His
arms moved her hands to unclasp, unbutton, and unzip . . . the blossom
emerged. The sun became the eye of all that was not earth, and Selene loved
fully, though the pallor of her skin left her momentarily abashed.

At first she lay in the tide's path, the top of her head at its most extreme
mark. The sand bank made a soft bed. The sea lover smoothly caressed her
calves, thighs, hips, breasts, shoulders, and cheeks before retreating to
pause in his mossy pinnacles. Three times this action was repeated, and then
Selene stood up, wading in with arms outstretched. Her arms were linked, as
she stood up to her neck in the saline flow. The balls and heels of her feet
wobbled, slithering on the moss. With the next wave, she lost her balance
–her breath prepared in unison with the hissing around her. She threw her
head back, once again horizontal, and launched into a backstroke, sweeping
and circling. She parted her legs wide with each thrust of motion, each
sweep of self-propulsion pushing out to answer the cavernous currents of his
passion. Seven circles gave her a delicious, warm bliss –then the sea lover,
well pleased, carried her back to a near-dry bed. Aching and contented,
Selene dozed a while.
B. 1940; live in London UK. Have been writing for many decades. My first publication was a poetry collection called Exacting Modality of the World Web. I produced a work of speculative fiction, High Wired On in 1985. I started trying to write literary erotica in the mid-80s. I have some short stories in this genre in addition to Self’s Blossom. I am also a singer-guitarist-songwriter. My main albums are Bacteria Shrapnel and Kaleidoscope Concentrate. I have many tracks on YouTube. 
How can my readers buy your book?  
You can find more information about Self’s Blossom at