Friday, February 24, 2012

Welcome Writer Tess Morrison!

I've been treated to a real special post today from my friend and fellow Wisconsite writer Tess Morrison, who recently had a new release come out from The Wild Rose Press! Whoo Hoo! Please give her a warm welcome, and while you're at it, check out Kissing Livvy!
I am so honored to have been invited to AJ’s Tattered Pages.  AJ and I share a common background as we’re both from the same hometown in northern Wisconsin, where I still live.  It seems every place I have visited has a flavor all its own and that can certainly be said for our neck of the woods.  The people are the best you can find and to top it off we are surrounded by beautiful forests, crisp, clear lakes and flowages, and charming farms tucked into the rolling hills.  I am inspired by what is around me every day!
‘Kissing Livvy’ was a joy to create.  With this book I allowed myself the freedom to let my characters blossom into people that are just plain fun.  People that know me always seem to want to know who inspired my characters.  I know my family feels as though they come under scrutiny because of this.  Usually I have to tell my readers that the characters are always a composite of how one person speaks, another’s behavior, another’s physical appearance, and so on.  But there is one I cannot deny.  Grandma Nell in ‘Kissing Livvy’ is my maternal grandmother.  No doubt about it.
My Grandma, her name was Frances or Frannie, was wonderful, but what a character!  I think she comes through loud and clear as Jesse Tully’s grandma.  Writing her scenes was like having my grandma sitting right next to me.  Thanks, Gram!
I am currently changing gears a bit and trying my hand at a piece of women’s fiction.  The title is ‘Eye on the Sparrow’.  It is a multi-generational saga about a family thrown off course by remains found in the back forty.  I will keep you posted as to whether this is a go or not.  So far, it’s been a challenge.  But whether or not I have success with ‘Eye on the Sparrow’ or not, romance is too deeply embedded in my heart to be replaced.  Romantic stories are where I can be funny and let loose all those steamy fantasies of mine.  Please feel free to visit me at my website at  Oh, and if you do, you’ll find the recipe for the cookies the Tully family raves about in ‘Kissing Livvy’.
Here's the Blurb:
After an environmental protest goes awry, Livvy Sherman finds herself abandoned on Jesse Tully’s logging job.  Taming the Tully men (and women) proves quite the wild ride.  Jesse’s got his hands full with a struggling business, a cantankerous father, a troubled teenager, and a crabby grandma.  Now he’s got this hippy-dippy protestor thrown into the mix.  What more could go wrong?
AJ, thanks again for having me.  All the best to you.
My pleasure to have you here, Tess!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Alpha vs. Beta - The Hero Debate

Welcome Jannine Gallant to Tattered Pages today, who brings with her a post near and dear to my heart! What say you, ladies? Are you an Alpha or Beta lover? Make sure to let Jannine know by leaving her a comment at the end of this post! Take it away, Jannine!

First of all, I’d like to thank A.J. for having me today. A.J. is a woman after my own heart. Her hero, Matty, is one of my favorites!

*AJ blushes* Awww...thanks, darlin. Gotta love me the Matty!  

What springs to mind with the word hero? I bet most of you are thinking tall, dark, and handsome with a killer smile and a macho attitude. Whether he’s the sports star, the business tycoon, or the bad boy, he sweeps the heroine off her feet with his charisma and confidence. He’s the best at what he does—or is he?

I’ve described an alpha hero. We read about them all the time. He’s the man who makes us sigh with longing. Heck, my heroes have all been alpha men—until Daniel. My hero in Bittersweet, a historical romance set in Colorado in 1880, is Daniel Moran. He’s a farmer, the younger brother who lived in his vibrant older brother’s shadow. He’s steadfast and dependable, fiercely loyal, a hard worker, liked by everyone. Daniel is an unusual breed, a beta hero. The odd thing is, of all my heroes, Daniel is the one I love the most. Watching him struggle and grow throughout the book, seeing him put his beliefs before his desires, giving him that alpha moment in the end… Well, I hope you’ll read Bittersweet and tell me what you think of my beta hero.

So, let’s hear your thoughts. What do you look for in a hero?

Eight months after her husband is killed in a train robbery, Tess Moran knows she must pick up the pieces of her shattered life and build a future for herself and her infant daughter. Daniel Moran’s love for Tess is bittersweet. Acting on his feelings for his sister-in-law will betray his dead brother’s memory. Watching her search for love elsewhere may very well destroy him.
In 1880, life in rural Colorado is filled with hard work and simple pleasures, but trouble looms on the horizon. Together Tess and Daniel battle drought and the outlaw who killed the man they both loved, but the greatest challenge of all is finding solace for their battered hearts.


Daniel followed her across the kitchen. He stood beside her in the doorway, looking out at the star filled sky. “It’s late. I’ll walk you home.”
            “You don’t have to. Shadow is with me.”
            “I’ll walk you home,” he repeated.
            Only the scuff of his boots on the road and the sound of crickets broke the silence. Tess sighed.
            He cleared his throat. “Why did Nathan come to see you?”
            “He asked me to the dance at the Leightons’ barn raising.”
            Daniel kicked a rock in the path and swore softly.
She stood still. “You’re the one who said there can’t be anything between us.”
            “I know, but I’m only human. Did he stay long?”
            “No, why do you ask?”
            “I haven’t the right, I know. The way you looked with that wet chemise clinging to you—” His voice trailed off.
            Tess blushed and was glad of the darkness. She hurried toward home, unable to outdistance her thoughts. “A gentleman wouldn’t mention it.”
            “You were hysterical over Emily, and all I could think about was how beautiful you looked. I hated Nathan for seeing you that way.”
            She stopped a few yards from her back door. The light shining from the kitchen window illuminated his face. His misery was clear.
            “All it would take is one word from you, Daniel, just one word. Say it,” she pleaded.
            “I can’t.”
            She swallowed hard. “Then let me be happy with Nathan.”
            He turned away. “I’m sorry, Tess. I’ll leave you alone.”
            “Fine. Goodnight, Daniel.”  Turning, she ran into the house before he could see the tears on her cheeks.

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Thanks for stopping by, everyone!