Thursday, 5 April 2018

Only the Beginning

Oh, hey! Looky here, it's my new contemporary romance...


Taking your best friend's place on a blind date to let the guy down easy was the plan...taking him to bed wasn't!

After a heartbreaking betrayal, Melissa Legacy shuns romance. So when her best friend joins the Lovers Oasis website and fears her fiancé will find out, Melissa agrees to meet the anonymous Romeo, prepared to explain her friend’s change of heart—then she sees him.

Failing restaurant entrepreneur, Craig Wheaton hasn’t been home since his mother’s tragic death. Now he’s back to confront his demons and stand beside his brother as best man. Dreading the reunion, he agrees to meet his avatar lover, but at the last moment he reconsiders the arrangement—until he lays eyes on her.

When Craig assumes Melissa is his online consort, she impulsively plays along, resulting in an afternoon of unexpected intimacy. But with Melissa using her friend’s identity and Craig dealing with a family fallout, is a future together impossible, or will they discover that love at first sight is Only the Beginning?

Add on Goodreads here!

Check out the Pinterest Inspiration Board here!

Read an excerpt here!

Sunday, 25 February 2018


I'm thrilled to announce that my latest YA novel , NEVER ONCE will be published by Swoon Reads!

A tough, tech-savvy princess tries to flee an arranged marriage and ends up working with a snarky commoner to stop a rebel plot  in this gender-swapped sci-fi YA retelling of Cinderella. 

(cover not final)

Here's the official announcement on Swoon Reads!

I wrote the book last summer and thought it would be a good fit for Swoon. I uploaded it to their site in September and crossed my fingers.

I was completely gobsmacked when I got the news in late November. And I somehow managed to keep it a secret until the announcement was made in mid-February.

Thank you to everyone who read and supported the story. I'm in the middle of MAJOR revisions, but it's exciting to see how the story is evolving. I'm looking forward to sharing all the exciting milestones with you including the cover reveal and ARC giveaways.

While it won't be published until February 2019, you can already support the story by adding it on Goodreads here.

Monday, 4 December 2017

10 Super Important Things NaNoWriMo Taught Me

NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month, is officially over, but the lessons I learned will last.

This is where the introductory paragraph would go, but most people skip it because they just want to read the top 10 here you go.

10 Super Important Things NaNoWriMo Taught Me

1. Don't edit. It slows you down. Save that for AFTER you've finished the book.

2. Writing every day for an hour creates a habit of—you guessed it—writing every day for an hour.

3. Writing in short bursts was more prodective than longer times in front of the computer. Being committed to that one hour meant I only wrote for that hour. It's amazing how much you can get down when you DON'T check social media.

4. Write the chapter ending first, preferably a nice cliffhanger or a shocking reveal.'s a post where I talk about 4 different cliffhanger ideas for that very purpose! This is a trick I learned a few books ago that made a big difference in shortening the time it took me to write a chapter. It's was easier to finish the scene when I knew where my characters were supposed to end up.

5. Don't look at the word count until you've finished your scene. Word count is a helpful measure, but we can sometimes become obsessed with it as well, taking our energy and focus off the words.

6. Write the next few lines of the next chapter so you have a spring board for the next session.

7. Put fresh air and exercise in between your writing time. Yes, get back to your life, recharge. Return to your novel the next day refreshed and ready to go!

8. Before I started my one hour writing sessions, I'd post it on Twitter, then return when I'd finished and comment on my stats. It wasn't always the word count, sometimes it would deal with what music I was writing to or a plot hole I'd uncovered or a character I had to kill. Regardless, it made me more accountable for the time frame, plus it helped me connect with other writers and in turn I was there to help cheer them on too.

9. Writing with others was fun and helped me be more productive. It's not a competition. We're all in this together and only a writer can understand what another writer is going through.

10. If you're stuck in a scene, add food and some weather. Seriously, it was a great way to jump start some of my chapters. 

I hope you found this helpful!

What did you learn from National Write A Novel Month?

Sunday, 22 October 2017

Top 11 Signs You're Living in a Romance Novel

First of all, no genre is cliché free.

And just because a plot is considered cliché, it doesn't mean no one wants to read it. On the contrary, commercial fiction is popular because the familiarity of the stories make them easy to digest. We tend to gravitate toward the cliché novels because we know we'll enjoy the story.  

So please read the following list with a grain of salt, and tongue firmly placed in cheek.

Top 11 Signs You're Living in a Romance Novel

#1. The hot new guy in your office ignores your brilliant charisma and instead zeroes in on the shy girl with mousy brown hair who never wears make up and keeps breaking the photocopier.

#2. All of your roommates are either working late, running out the door to go clubbing, or are too sick to notice that the sexy neighbor who just moved in may or may not be a werewolf.

#3. Your best friend has been the same guy since grade one—even though no one ever stays best friends that long. Plus, you've secretly developed a crush on him.

#4. The most gorgeous girl in the office is also the meanest.

#5. Your best friend from #3 starts to date the girl from #4. You're upset, but not enough to tell him the truth because that would make NO SENSE AT ALL. Instead, you plan an elaborate ruse to win him over that blows up in your face the night of the Christmas office party.

#6. Your other best friend is a fashion diva, loves 80's music, and always has cookie dough in her fridge. Plus, she curses a lot.

#7. On vacation you have an impulsive yet mind blowing affair with a mysterious stranger, only to return to work to discover he's your new boss.

#8. The seductive, sex crazed trainer at your gym suddenly decides the nondescript girl from your local coffee shop is the one for him and turns into an overnight Romeo, swearing off sex to prove his true love to her.

#9. All it takes to make you over into a super model is a pair of contacts and a hair straightener—and of course the right dress borrowed from best friend from #6.

#10. You hate him and everything he stands for, but because you're broke (and secretly need to flee the country) you agree to marry your best friend's brother in order to comply with the stipulation of his late father's will.

#11. While on the ski trip your sister won through a singing contest, you get separated from her during a storm and end up stranded inside a remote cabin with a chiselled ski instructor with amazingly minty breath.

BONUS!!!! Every hot guy has amazing abs and green eyes, however statistically suspicious that may be.

I hope you enjoyed this quirky list! Feel free to check out this excerpt from THE RIGHT FIT, a book that's as easy to digest as pumpkin pie and will leave you twice as satisfied.

Monday, 16 October 2017

6 Essential Elements Your Romance Novel Needs

What's your favourite romance novel? Now think of your favourite scene from that novel. Is it the ending when, despite the obstacles, both leads get their happily ever after? Or is it the first kiss...or the first fight?

Regardless, there are more players on stage and circumstances that helped create the tension/opportunity/obstacle that led to your favourite scene.

Here are a few handy tips for making sure your own romance story has the right support system for those unforgettable scenes!

Six Essential Elements Your Romance Novel Needs

1. The Rival

There needs to be a rival for the protagonist’s romantic intentions, but this doesn't necessarily mean a love triangle. This could be someone who takes time away from the romantic interest as well.

In my contemporary romance, The Right Fit, Antony is desperate to reconnect with Maxine, but his brother Marc is a controller and feels it's his responsibility to shape Antony into a successful pro-hockey player, regardless of what Antony truly desires.

2. Helpers vs Harmers

As you can guess, helpers are characters who assist in enabling the relationship grow while harmers are motivated to keep the couple apart. It should be noted that a helper can sometimes unwittingly become a harmer. It's common in romantic comedies to have a character who is truly invested in the couple's happiness, but ends up becoming bad luck by always doing or saying the wrong thing at the worst time, thereby taking the role of harmer.

In my novel, Maxine has enthusiastic support from her younger sister. However, in the end it's her own self doubt that is the most destructive harmer to her relationship with Antony.

3. External Need

This mechanism acts as a motivation that brings the two characters together.

As an example, Antony is certain his new found luck on the ice is entirely due to his one night with Maxine. Desperate to stay in the professional hockey league to pay his brother's medical bills and support them both, Antony pursues Maxine at all costs, including keeping his true identity a secret. As a result Maxine is overwhelmed by his attention and begins to believe she can love again after having her heart broken by her ex-fiancé.

4. Secrets

One or both leads are keeping something from the other. The motivation for not telling the truth must be greater than the risk to the relationship.

In The Right Fit, Antony is not only keeping his true identity a secret, but also the fact that he considers Maxine his good luck charm and is using her to keep his hockey career on course. Meanwhile, Maxine considers Antony a rebound, as a way of getting her confidence back and helping her forget about her ex.

However, it's important to acknowledge that characters often lie to themselves to justify their actions/decisions.

5. Rituals

These are the cute little idiosyncrasies a couple naturally develops with each other, those shared intimacies that only they know about.

It's most effective to use when the couple is apart and something triggers the memory for one of the leads. This can motivate a change of heart at the realization that they truly need that person in their life. *cue the rush to the airport to stop their true love from leaving forever*

As a result of mistaken identity, Maxine assumes Antony's name is Ace. This leads to a nickname which creates a moment like the one described above as the name 'Ace' pops up when Maxine least expects it.   
Maxine rolled her eyes and instead told her to pick out a nail color for them both. It was a bright ruby shade and when Maxine looked at the name on the bottom of the bottle, her heart filled and then slowly deflatedAce of Hearts.

6. Moral Weight

In essence, the moral weight is how the lovers changed for the better over the course of the novel. It's always satisfying for the reader if the ending scene is a mirror opposite to the beginning where their flaws were highlighted.

At the beginning of The Right Fit, Maxine was still trying to find a way back into her ex-fiancé's arms convinced he was the only man she could have a life with. And Antony was carrying a secret guilt fueled by the belief he didn't deserve to be loved. By the end of the story, Maxine realizes she's beautiful and desirable enough for any man and Antony's past sins didn't preclude him from happiness.

Thanks for reading. I hope you found this useful! Happy writing! Please enjoy the book trailer for THE RIGHT FIT.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

My Latest Publishing Venture

I'm a big supporter of sharing my work online. As some of you know, I almost gave up on writing and then I discovered can read about that here.

Now, seven published novels later, I'm excited to be partaking in Swoon Reads!

What is Swoon Reads you ask?

It's pretty cool, actually. Like Wattpad, stories are posted on their site for free. Then readers can comment and vote, letting the Swoon Reads Staff know which books are resonating with the reading community, thereby helping them find their next author! But don't take my word for it, here's their twitter bio.

We publish the latest and greatest in YA fiction with the help of readers and writers like you, because we believe that great books are better shared. 

Yes, books really are better shared! My mantra.

I've submitted my latest manuscript, NEVER ONCE to Swoon Reads, hoping it finds a loyal following to enchant and charm the pants off.

Hmm...sorry? What's my book about? Oh, right.

*clears throat* It's a gender swapped retelling of Cinderella with a sci-fi twist.

*cues epic romantic soundtrack with an underlying impish beat in the strings section*

As heir to an impoverished planet, eighteen-year-old Princess Tianna is forced to select a husband from an array of interplanetary suitors to ensure a viable future for her people. But instead of choosing a wedding gown, she steals a spaceship determined to flee the arranged marriage.

Tired of being treated like a slave at his stepfather’s android repair shop, Sinter trades in his safety goggles for a tailored suit and executes a daring escape, only to end up stowing away in Princess Tianna's ship by mistake. 

Sparks fly as the two opposites battle wits, but they soon realize their schemes of escape come at a dangerous price when they inadvertently uncover a plot to overthrow the monarchy. As they work together to expose the mysterious rebel leader, Tianna and Sinter are surprised to find they share an unexplainable bond and soon their attraction is too great to resist.

Racked with guilt, Sinter decides to reveal his true identity on the night of the ball, but testing Tianna’s affections will cause a deadly chain of events to unfold because the rebels are plotting an assassination and the hired killer is the very last person he suspects.

WHEE!!! How can you resist?

Guess what, you don't have to! Head over to Swoon Reads at this link right HERE and you can start reading Never Once speedy quick.

Psst...don't forget to rate the story and comment.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Top 6 Reasons Why Real Teens Could Never Solve A Mystery

No offense to the queen herself, Nancy Drew...

OR these guys...

Disclaimer: I'm basing this opinion from observing my own teens and their friends. Don't get me wrong, these are lovely thoughtful kids...most of the time. And I truly believe they will contribute to some point.

BUT! As I write the fourth book in the Nefertari Hughes series, I realize a lot of the skills Terry has to use in order to put clues together and solve the mystery are totally lacking in most the kids I know.

So plant your tongue firmly in your cheek and enjoy the top 6 reasons why real teens could never solve a mystery.

1.  They'll never be able to break into a safe to read a crucial document because they can't even figure out a combination lock when they have the actual combination. Seriously, the first day of junior high is basically everyone trying to open their locker.

2. Taking pictures of the suspect doing something suspicious is impossible for today's teens because no one knows how to work the camera unless it's used to take a selfie.

3. They would never be able to impersonate someone on the phone in order to trick the suspect into confessing incriminating information because they don't have telephone skills such as dialing and knowing how to ask for someone.

4. They don't have the stamina for a foot race to catch the suspect because they're so used to being chauffeured to all their activities. Plus, someone always needs to stop into Starbucks.

5. Confronting the suspect is out of the question. That would mean talking with someone face to face and reading their body language which would require listening and paying attention.

6. Unless it's on Google maps, no one is going to be able to find the hidden treasure.

BONUS! If they find a clue written in cursive—nope, just forget it.

I hope you enjoyed this. Any other suggestions?

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