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Friday, February 14, 2020

Between Once Upon A Time and Happily Ever After

I guest post once a month over on the Romance Gems blog and this month, with Valentine's Day coming up, I wanted to do something a little different. I wanted to do the opposite of one of those "It's Valentine's Day, let's make fun of Romance novels" type articles. This baby is for all of us!
And if you head on over the Romance Gems blog, there's a monthly giveaway! Usually it's amazon gift cards, or some of the Gems' books.

For some of my earlier posts (there are 13) :
Bedtime Stories
Snowed In With One Bed
Inspiration Strikes!



Around Valentine's Day we always see these awful articles about "Trashy" Romance novels, "bodice rippers," and Fabio. Fabio hasn't even been on a Romance cover since the early '90s. I mean, seriously?

So I wanted to try the opposite of one of those articles.

I want to talk about how we are the opposite of the stereotypical bodice ripper with Fabio starring front and center. Let's talk about how different Romance novels are.

One thing I love is how much variety there is in the Romance World (or Romancelandia as we affectionately call it).  If you want a book about a surfer heroine who time travels to Scotland and meets her hero? There's a book for that (Highland Games by Laura Hunsaker). What if you want a Navy SEAL whose platoon was sold out and is trying to clear his name but also has an investigative journalist dogging his steps? There's a book for that (Off the Grid by Monica McCarty). What if you want a fallen woman who was done wrong but her hero respects her and shows her what love really is? There's a book for that (The Governess Affair by Courtney Milan FREE). What if you want a hero who looks like bearded Captain America who falls for the good girl? There's a book for that! (Tikka Chance on Me by Suleikha Snyder). What if you want a vampire/ angel/viking who falls for a human lawyer, well, you guessed it, there's a book for that (Kiss of Temptation by Sandra Hill). If you want a book that has demons, angels, magic, and an Arabic feel to the mythology, there's a book for that! (Fate's Match by Elysabeth Grace).If you want it, I'm sure there's a book for that.

One thing you'll notice, no matter how much people cry "formulaic!" or "cliche!" or "tropes!" is that even the ones that have similar tropes, are different. It's what's in the middle that's important.

If you want a book about a damsel in distress rescued by her prince, it's out there. But...what if your damsel in distress rescues herself?



What if, in between your "Once upon and time," and your "they lived happily ever after," something unexpected happens? Something that sets the reader's world on its axis. Something that creates a romance fan for life. This is what we Romance fans live for; that middle part, that in between part. I know each Romance novel I pick up is a promise of "happily ever after," but it's how those characters get to that point that keeps me flipping pages. That journey is what makes each Romance novel different, and that difference should be celebrated instead of poked fun at for clicks during Valentine's Day.

Instead of trashy and lurid, Romance novels are uplifting and happy. They can be everything. They can be empowering, entertaining, and enjoyable. They can be intense, dark, light, easy, fluffy, and fun. I really wish people would leave the stereotypes out of the picture.

We've even taken back the term "bodice ripper." (quick side note: If you ever get a chance to visit L.A. you should stop by the Ripped Bodice, a bookstore dedicated only to Romance, and seriously, they are amazing! They do a lot of author events, and a lot of good in the community).

And we not only have taken back bodice rippers, we're taking back Valentine's Day. We refuse to let trashy clickbait articles about guilty pleasures take over a day celebrating love. You want to celebrate love by reading your favorite comfort read, go for it. You want to read something new and out of your comfort zone, do it! You want to read an old bodice ripper? You rip that bodice! But you want to poke fun at Romance novels when you haven't read one since 1972? Nope. Come back after you've read anything written in the past 5 years. You need some recs? I gotchu.

Here's a twitter account you might enjoy, especially since it's Black History Month here in America: @WOCInRomance

And Sarah MacLean has a great list here

For some of The Romance Gems' amazing stories, check out our Bookstore, but don't forget to enter the February Giveaway here!

And if you want a Scottish blacksmith vampire try my short story The Broken Highlander which is free this week on amazon :)



$.99 on all other platforms

Previously published in the charity anthology Shades of Pink Volume 2The Broken Highlander is the prequel to Highlander Reborn.


In the darkest hours after waking from death to his life as a vampire, blacksmith Nevin MacLachlan must learn to adjust to his new existence. While he adapts quickly to his enhanced senses, he hates the vampires that took everything from him. Forsaking the Nightkind, he plans to survive on his own.

No one said it would be easy.

For centuries he tries to blend in with humans, but what kind of blacksmith only works at night? After being chased from his home time and time again, Nevin no longer has compassion for the humans he once knew.

The only things keeping him from becoming completely feral are his sense of honor, and the teasing memory of the woman who changed him. With no clan to belong to, human or Nightkind, Nevin finds out survival isn’t the only thing to live for, and that eternity is a long time to hate what you’ve become.
Sunday, January 19, 2020

Romance For Puerto Rico

My co-writer Heather Lire and I write as Kenzie MacLir, and in our latest story, we have a Puerto Rican heroine. We were going to help anyway, but felt that it was only fitting to enter our latest book as an ARC in the Romance for Puerto Rico auction.

In the early hours of Tuesday January 7, 2020, parts of the island of Puerto Rico were devastated by a series of strong earthquakes resulting in the loss of lives, collapsed buildings, loss of electricity for nearly three million residents and left hundreds of thousands of people without running water. The earthquakes are still happening. People are living in open-air shelters rather than risk moving back to their homes. There are a confirmed 700 + destroyed homes and much more damage to infrastructure in the area. Help is needed and quickly.

The Romance for PR silent auction will raise funds for The Hispanic Federation and World Central Kitchen. As you read this, these organizations are in Puerto Rico providing much-needed relief for those affected by the earthquakes, many still recovering from the effects of Hurricane Maria which made landfall in September of 2017.





Click on the image to go directly to our auction page. 

I'll post our tentative blurb for Roughing It, the latest installment in the New York Empires series.
Our story is called Against the Boards and it follows Kyle Sandberg, hotshot forward, and best friend to Reiner Jahr, the hero from Change it Up in the Icing the Puck anthology. The three stories are written together, each author has a different teammate. Look for a female goalie, a billionaire hockey player, and some werewolves. Enjoy!

When werewolf and professional hockey player Kyle Sandberg left Sweden as an eighteen year old to play in the NHL he had no clue the sacrifices he’d have to make. The biggest one though was leaving his family and pack behind. 

Faith Church moved to NYC because she figured such a big city was the very last place she’d ever run into any wolves or a pack. She had enough pack politics growing up. Getting involved with the brother of the new pack leader for Brooklyn is the very last thing she should be doing. There’s just something about him though that has her dropping all of her inhibitions. 
Sunday, January 12, 2020

My Workspace

On Twitter some of us were talking about our workspaces, and I figured I ought to share that over here.

About 5 years ago or so we moved into a house that has a downstairs room. I used to write in the loft of our old house, because that's where the computer was, but now? I had an office. I was so excited for this! And then I discovered that at night, which is primarily when I write, I don't like being tucked away downstairs away from the sleeping family. I'm so contrary! First the loft was too busy, now the office is too lonely...Okay Goldilocks, which is just right?

I felt guilty since I had kept asking for an office and I finally had one to myself, so I kept at it, but mostly ended up at the dinner table. It made it easier to hear the baby monitor (it didn't reach to the office) and watch the kids. But as the kids got older, they started taking it over. My husband built them a pretty cool hideout and rock wall. Do you know how hard it is to work with someone hanging above you like it's a jungle gym? So. Hard.


As the baby got older, I started working in my room. She played a lot in my room and I would sit on my bed or the floor. After a while, my neck and back would bother me from typing in bed. I kept mentioning getting a small cushioned bench or couch for the foot of the bed, but my husband surprised me last year and bought a floating desk that folds away.

So while I still work in my room, now I'm at least at a desk. And I don't have to share it with the kids. Although they are in my room constantly. But I've discovered that I don't mind the noise. :)


Sunday, July 21, 2019

The Accidental Branding of a Highland Hussy

I've been invited to join the Romance Gems blog. I will have one post a month, and I wanted you to be able to share in the fun! There will be giveaways and chances to discover new authors every day. I don't want you guys to miss out on any fun or exciting things I've done, so I'll make sure to keep you guys up to speed with everything I'm doing. I've written 6 posts so far, and my favorite has to be this one:

The Accidental Branding of a Highland Hussy


Once upon a time, there was a baby author who loved Highlander Romances so much, that she read any book with a man in a kilt on them. At one point, she created a Twitter account specifically to join in Man Candy Monday. This was a night where all of Romancelandia would join in to post stock photos of hunky men. For Laura, it was reserved for men in kilts only, and she was known for finding the best of the kilted men. She teased on twitter that she was a hussy for those Highlanders. What she didn't know, is that she would become so well known by that name, that she would be forever branded the Highland Hussy.

When someone says that they're "on brand," it usually means that whatever it is they are doing is exactly what one would expect from them. They are conforming to the image that is associated with that brand. And my brand is, you guessed it! Highlanders! I write Scottish Romance...with a twist!

Check out this post for more about my books

Hi I'm Laura Hunsaker, the Highland Hussy, and I write Scottish Time Travel Romance. Except when I don't.

I had an idea that just wouldn't leave, and after a major case of writer's block, I decided to take someone's advice and just play around. The goal was to not stress about my work in progress, but rather just write something, anything, new. In the Romantic Suspense I've written called Dark Past, there's nary a Scot to be found! As an author, I really wondered long and hard about what to do about that, since I typically write in such a different genre. As a reader, I thought about several well-known authors who write in several genres, and it's neither confusing nor annoying. So this Highland Hussy has written a Romantic Suspense without any Highlanders LOL.

You can buy Dark Past at all major ebook retailers.

Amazon  |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo   Google Play Books  |  Smashwords

I can't wait for everyone to meet Kate and Kyle, and let's hope readers won't mind reading an FBI hero and barista heroine written by a Highland Hussy.


Some secrets won't stay quiet...

The small town was supposed to be safe... 

Kate Landry is tired of running. Thinking she's safe, she settles in the small logging town of Chester, California to manage a cafe. She may be keeping a low profile, but she's hoping to return to a normal life. 
When FBI agent Kyle Donovan visits to Chester to stay with a friend, and to recover from his latest case, he never expects to meet sexy barista Kate. 

But someone is following Kate... 

Kyle worries he brought trouble to her door, while Kate worries her dark past is coming after her.

With danger lurking around every corner, her safe haven isn't as safe as she'd thought. Kate will finally have to trust someone enough to tell him her secrets. Secrets that may just get them killed...

Monday, July 1, 2019

Blog Highlight: Addicted to Books

Every now and then, I feature a book blog here. Today I'll highlight Addicted to Books.

Marie lives in Sweden, collects rubber ducks, and loves reading! Addicted to Books is an eclectic mixture of books she loves, places she visits, and dreams of Scotland.

I'll add a couple of links to a post where she interviewed me.

And a nice review of Dark Past. 





Thanks Marie and Addicted to Books, for all you do. Authors would be lost without Book Bloggers! And on that note, if you want to nominate a blog to be featured here, mention in the comments, or shoot me an email!




Thursday, May 30, 2019

Dark Past is Out in the Wild

It's been a month since Dark Past released, and I wanted to thank you all for making this past month so wonderful! :)

I'll post all the links below.

Amazon Kindle

Barnes and Noble 

Kobo

Google Play Books  (FYI it's discounted on Google Play for some reason)

Smashwords

Goodreads




The small town was supposed to be safe... 

Kate Landry is tired of running. Thinking she's safe, she settles in the small logging town of Chester, California to manage a cafe. She may be keeping a low profile, but she's hoping to return to a normal life. 
When FBI agent Kyle Donovan visits to Chester to stay with a friend, and to recover from his latest case, he never expects to meet sexy barista Kate. 

But someone is following Kate... 

Kyle worries he brought trouble to her door, while Kate worries her dark past is coming after her. 
With danger lurking around every corner, her safe haven isn't as safe as she'd thought. Kate will finally have to trust someone enough to tell him her secrets. Secrets that may just get them killed...

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Pre-Order Dark Past

Hi everyone!

I have fantastic news! Dark Past is up for pre-order! I hope you're as excited as I am for Kate and Kyle's story!

Release Day is April 30, 2019


The small town was supposed to be safe... 
Kate Landry is tired of running. Thinking she's safe, she settles in the small logging town of Chester, California to manage a cafe. She may be keeping a low profile, but she's hoping to return to a normal life.
When FBI agent Kyle Donovan visits to Chester to stay with a friend, and to recover from his latest case, he never expects to meet sexy barista Kate.

But someone is following Kate... 

Kyle worries he brought trouble to her door, while Kate worries her dark past is coming after her.
With danger lurking around every corner, her safe haven isn't as safe as she'd thought. Kate will finally have to trust someone enough to tell him her secrets. Secrets that may just get them killed...
 


Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble  |  Kobo  |  Google Play Books  |  Smashwords