Monday, January 30, 2012


A word about charity…sometimes it just doesn’t begin at home.

Many happy meows on this most catspicious day, ROCCO!  You are a most impressive journalist.  It must be quite difficult to lower yourself to writing in English rather than Cat-latin, but you cover your disdain well.  I hope you are receiving a bounty of sardines and chicken livers from the Human in return for your writing expertise.  When are you going to release a Cat-cake calendar for your legions of fans?  We wait with “baited” breath!  All of us at Kids Need to Read look forward to gathering around the scratching post to discuss your intriguing posts.  Happy blogaversary!  –Denise Gary, co-founder and Director, KIDS NEED TO READ


Most followers of this blog know that I have a soft spot for charities that feature kids and animals – and that one of my very favorite charities is one called KIDS NEED TO READ.

When I was searching for charities, KNTR was one at the top of my list!  But I’d be lion (heh heh) if I said the fact one of my favorite all time actors, Nathan Fillion is one of the co-founders played a big decision in my “throwing my tail” behind this great charity.

The HUMAN has done some fundraisers for KNTR in 2011 – the most recent being her participation in the EVERY WITCH WAY BUT WICKED SHORT STORY ANTHOLOGY.  ALL the proceeds go to KNTR – and you can still get this book! Only .99 at Barnes and Noble and Amazon – see sidebar!

THE HUMAN and I are planning more fundraisers for KIDS in 2012 – but we know, in order for people to want to contribute, they need to know just what it is they are contributing to. So….

According to the UNLD:
·         Worldwide, one in five adults cannot read or write
·         In low-income countries, only about 61% of adults are literate
·         In high-income countries, almost 99% of adults are literate

Check out these literacy statistics:

this fundamental lack of basic skills inhibits most people from achieving success in many areas of life. Illiteracy has profound effects in the life of the person who can't read, and it also affects on the rest of society as well.

Kids Need to Read works to create a culture of reading for children by providing inspiring books to underfunded schools, libraries, and literacy programs across the United States, especially those serving disadvantaged children.

From their mission statement:
Reading – it is the single most important skill children must learn to be productive members of society. Books open their minds, inspire their imaginations and stimulate their intelligence. As budget cutbacks increase, funding for libraries is often the first thing to go, especially in failing school systems. There are great numbers of schools that have been unable to buy new books for their students to read in years. Kids Need to Read was established to fight this disaster by sending exciting new books to underfunded schools and libraries across the United States, as well as to other organizations that provide literacy support to children, particularly disadvantaged children.

As a premier interviewer and aspiring novelist, I understand the importance of knowing how to read! (and so does the HUMAN!).  So, folks, when you have a minute, check out this great charity that was founded by PJ Haarmsma, TV’s Castle, Nathan Fillion, and Denise Gary and learn a bit more about it:

There are many ways you can help them out!  And now, onto unfinished business…

Firstoff…the winners of MaryJanice Davidson’s giveaway! Our winners, chosen using are:
The winner of WOLF AT THE DOOR IS CupcakeBlonde!
The winner of Derik’s Bane is Momma!

Look for emails from MJ’s lovely assistant, Tracy detailing how to claim your prize!

And now…..what you have all been waiting for! My store contest!

One lucky winner will win their choice of a T-shirt, Mug or WaterBottle (with my handsome face on it) from my CafePress store! To enter:  simply answer the BLOGAVERSARY question below. Post your answer in the comments section of this post along with your email address.  We will choose the winner using from all correct entries!  To get extra entries, just tweet, FB, friend us…you know the drill!

My question:  What was the craziest thing author Adrienne Giordano ever did?

Good luck, people! Contest closes midnight tomorrow, January 31st. Winner will be announced Wednesday, Feb. 1st!
Also on Wednesday, kicking off the Feb portion of BLOGAVERSARY:  Post and giveaway from author ASHLYN CHASE!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012


When I started planning my BLOGAVERSARY celebration, I knew right away who I wanted to approach for a guest blog:  the fabulous queen of vampire chick-lit, MaryJanice Davidson!  MJ graciously got on board with not only a guest post/teaser from her new UNDEAD novel, she also got on board with a fabulous giveaway for two lucky readers!

So, without further ado, in the words of the Pointer Sisters, I’m so excited to welcome back to my blog, MARYJANICE DAVIDSON!

Hello Folks!

I thought, as tribute to Rocco the author-interviewin’ ass-kickin’ cat, I’d share an excerpt from UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE, the next Betsy book, which hits shelves this June.  Although I’m a dog person, Betsy is your readers (and Rocco) are about to find out!

Rocco’s blog is the only place readers can read this UNSTABLE teaser.  I’m not sure if that’s a threat or a promise. - MaryJanice

(minor spoiler)

Giselle, Betsy’s cat, dies a relatively peaceful death in the mansion, which adds to Betsy’s already stressful to-do list.  It’s a minor spoiler, as her death is discovered within the first twenty pages of UNSTABLE.

 (‘nother minor spoiler)

Anyone who has read UNDEAD AND UNDERMINED, and/or WOLF AT THE DOOR, knows that in the new-and-hopefully-improved timeline, Jessica (Betsy’s bestie) is hugely pregnant.  (It’s always the quiet ones.)  For those who haven’t had a chance to read the latest, her pregnancy is also mentioned very very early in UNSTABLE.

* * *

“What are you talking about, she’s dead?”
“Betsy, I’ve got a zillion things to do what with creating life and all, so could you pay attention when I talk?  Did you not see my lips moving?”
We stared down at the body with more than a little surprise.  “What happened?”
“No idea.  I was headed to the basement and I almost tripped over the body.”  Jessica patted her gigantic belly.  Like the stairway wasn’t dusty and dark and claustrophobic enough without The Fetus of the Darned hogging her stomach, and also most of the stairwell.  “I could have broken my neck!  Do you know what a fall could have done to me at this stage of my pregnancy?”
Nothing.  Nothing at all; the Michelin Man had less padding.  I didn’t say anything, though.  I wasn’t ever going to be lauded for my genius, but that didn’t mean I was an utter dumbass.
This is going to sound terrible (even for me), but you know that series Game of Thrones?  I guess the show did so well that now there are books about the Game of Thrones.  Or maybe the books came first—I dunno.  I quit reading fantasy before I was voting age.  There was just too much of “I shall draw the mystical sword of Eldenwurst, thus named Soulsucker, and with mine eldritch blade will smite all enemies of the fey but fear not, all ye who tremble before Soulsucker, I shall rule with a just hand and also the Council of Geeks, now ye and ye, bring me fifty virgins and lots of mead”.  Those books lose me right around chapter two.  Anyway, I’d never read the books, but the show was pretty cool, and I got hooked on it.
I’m bringing this up because in the first season of Game of Thrones, the unborn baby of one of the main characters was called The Stallion Who Mounted The World, a scary yet cool nickname. Jessica was sporting The Belly That Ate The World.  She claimed she wasn’t due until summer, but I had my doubts.  She was just...gigantic.  Gah:  twins?  Triplets?  Just what this place needed, three pissed off newborns continually crying and pooping.
“I’m glad you didn’t trip.”  I sighed and glanced back down at the dead cat.  “She’s looked better.”  An understatement.  Giselle didn’t look like she was sleeping; dead bodies never looked like they were sleeping. 
And Giselle, the cat who’d gotten me into this whole vampire queen mess in the first place, was most definitely not sleeping.  Her eyes were cloudy slits.  Her mouth was frozen, half-open, and she was thin, but not dangerously so...she’d always been scrawny.  And she was old...I’d had her for over ten years.  She just showed up one day and refused to leave, so I got in the habit of feeding and sheltering her.  I guess that’s how babies and roommates show up, too.  You feed ‘em and they just never leave.
For ten years we pretended the other one didn’t exist.  Our only interactions were during meal times.  (Hers.  Not mine.)  And since I’d moved us into the mansion way back when, plenty of other people were happy to take over the chore.  The mansion was so big, my pet (except I’d never really had that warm connection to her, and you couldn’t say I was her pet, either:  see above, lack of connection) and I would go days without seeing each other, which suited us both.
I’d been killed the first time trying to coax Giselle into coming out of bad weather.  I wasn’t paying attention during the snowstorm while I coaxed, and got creamed by a Pontiac Aztec.  Giselle, natch, scampered off without a scratch.  She was the only mammal in my life that found my resurrection boring.
Now here I was, looking down at her skinny dead body and realizing I had one more task to finish before I could consider all my pet responsibilities fulfilled.
“Are there shovels in the shed?”
“There are?  Really?”  What terrible news; I couldn’t pull the old ‘I can’t do this unpleasant chore even though I really want to because we don’t have the right equipment’ ploy. 
Giselle, you insensitive jerk, you couldn’t have done this a month ago?  Or a month later?  You gotta do it now, while fate and/or karma is really piling it on, and Jessica wouldn’t have pedicures with me, and we’d burned out the motor on one of the smoothie blenders?  Typical cat:  not one thought for how her death would inconvenience me.  Andrew Vachss, the best noir-ey writer in the history of the genre, called cats the lap dancers of the animal world.  Give them attention, they’re there.  Stop, they’re outta there.
Well, she was outta here, all right.
“Next time,” I announced, “I’m getting a dog.”
Jessica snorted.  She knew that was a lie.  She knew why it was a lie, too, but was too nice to call me on it just then.  “If memory serves, you didn’t exactly get Giselle.”
“Your memory serves.”  I bent and gingerly picked up the body, then held it at arm’s length like a luau platter.  “Yuck.”
“Oh, will you suck it up?  You’ve seen how many hideously mangled dead vampires, never mind mangled regular people (who were bad, but still mangled), and friends have been shot in front of you and/or killed themselves in your house, been to Hell and back (literally!) but you’re squicking out over a cat?  That cat?  Hey, I just said suck to a vampire.”  Weirdly, that seemed to please her.  “That’s all you’ve been doing lately, complaining about how awful it is to be white and pretty and married to the hottest guy in the state of Minnesota.  Pardon me while I waaaaaaaah.”
I gave her a look, but decided not to shove her down the stairs.  She’s creating life, she’s creating life.  Oh, and she stuck with me when I came back from the dead.  Also: creating life.  “Can you go grab me an old sheet or pillowcase or something?”
“Sure.”  My hugely pregnant pal was looking right at me, her brown eyes thoughtful.  Since she was a couple of steps above, I started to get scared.  If she tripped, she’d kill us both.  “Sorry about this, Betsy.  And sorry about a couple of seconds ago.  My back feels like someone’s resting a set of barbells on it, and the barbells are on fire.  It’s not doing much for my mood.  And, you know...”  She let out such a gusty sigh, I wondered if she’d float off the stairs like Mary Poppins.  “The random deaths and stuff.”
I waved it away, all of it, along with my fears of being squashed to death by a pregnant woman while clutching the dead body of my cat and fretting over my lack of pedicures.  “Par for the corpse.  Whoa.  At least that didn’t come off as a Freudian slip or anything.”  Had I said that?  Had I really?
She giggled, thank God, then turned and started climbing the stairs again.  Non-pregnant Jessica was rail-thin and favored nail polish in colors like Day Glo Orange or Aged Chartreuse (which, in case you’re wondering, looks like vomit dried on a nail bed).  Pregnant Jessica was not rail thin.  At all.  Quite the opposite of rail thin.  What would that be, bovine fat?  And she was avoiding all the chemicals she could.  All of ‘em!  Which was only impossible. 
So among other things, she wouldn’t go near a salon, (or sushi, of all eighty-zillion Japanese women didn’t eat sushi when they were knocked up?), which was a personal disaster for me.  She was using all natural deodorant (the kind that didn’t work), natural hair product (the kind that make her look like a pissed-off Rastafarian), and when I gently suggested a fetal-friendly salon massage, she slammed the door in my face (so to speak).  All of this to say: this sucks.  Who goes to a salon alone?  Big-time boring.
I followed her up the stairs, lugging my dead cat.  If I was smarter, or nicer, I’d think something like, It’s sad that the cat keeled over, but Jessica’s baby will be born soon and out of death comes life, a full circle of life, hakuna matata and suchlike. 
But I’m not smart, or nice, so what I thought was:  And the hits, they keep on coming.  Nobody ever considers my feelings when they decide to keel over and die on the basement stairs.  And the second I’m confronted with an evil poopie diaper, I’m going to go right out of my teeny tiny mind.
Still:  if our situations were reversed, I’d want Giselle to bury me.  Wait.  I absolutely wouldn’t, since half the time I had no idea if I was dead-for-real and could wake up screaming on an autopsy table or, worse, sleep through Macy’s annual shoe sale, so I wouldn’t trust a cat to know, either.  Hell, coroners sometimes couldn’t tell.  I actually knew that for a fact; it was a horrible thing to know for a fact: at least two certified medical examiners hadn’t been able to tell if I was dead.
Besides, our situations weren’t reversed.  And I could whine and bitch until the sun rose and set and rose again, and it’d still be my responsibility. 
            I was not a dog person.  I wasn’t a cat person, either.  I was a Betsy person.  And believe me: taking care of myself, feeding and clothing myself and putting a roof over my head, keeping myself from being killed (again) and out of divorce court was enough of a challenge without throwing domestic animals into the mix.  Or wild ones, even.

So after Jessica got me a yellowed pillowcase, I stuffed Giselle into it and out I went, into the deep November cold, searching for some meaning in all the crazy crap that had been happening since Giselle got me killed a few years ago.  And I was also searching for a shovel.  And after this yuck-o errand, I would be searching for a booze smoothie.
Ah, the glamorous life of a vampire queen.

PURR….MJ, thank you SO much for this EXCLUSIVE teaser! (Even though Giselle, one of my favorite characters, bites the big one).  I know all my followers and your fans are purring too, with excitement.  I cannot wait for the next BETSY novel, UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE, out in June 2012.  And purrhaps we will have another interview beforehand – maybe with MJ, or possibly even Betsy or Sinklair, who knows? (although I’ve always been partial to Jessica and Marc, myself…)

THE HUMAN is already trying to make a Whiskey Smoothie….

Anyway, Keep up with MJ’s latest news on her website:

Anyway, people, now it’s time for…the giveaway(s)!  (PLURAL! ta-dah!)

Not one, but Two lucky readers will win their choice of  WOLF AT THE DOOR or DERIK'S BANE.  All you have to do to enter is leave a comment in the comments section of this blog, along with your email address.  Plus (and this is important) also please specify which book you would like to win.  If you want a chance to win both, tell us! YOU CAN ENTER BOTH DRAWINGS. Any entry not specifying a book title will be disqualified.

For extra entries, you can do any of the following:

Mention this blog post/exclusive excerpt/contest on twitter and/or Facebook
Friend “the Human”
Friend me, Rocco, the SciFi Blogging Cat!
Follow me, Rocco, onTwitter @RoccoBlogger
Friend MJ Davidson (if you haven’t already!) or follow MJ on Twitter!

Be sure to mention all you’ve done in your comment so we know how many entries to give you. Contest closes Midnight, January 29th, winners will be chosen at random using on January 30th!

What are you waiting for! Get busy!  And thank you to MJ and her marvelous assistant Tracey for their time and generosity with the giveaways!

And don’t forget…my store giveaway is Monday.  I shall ask a question purrtaining to one of the Blogaversary posts. All correct answers will be accumulated and the winner chosen by!  The winner will win their choice of a t-shirt, mug, or waterbottle from my CafePress store! (with my handsome picture on it…of course)
Monday, January 30th is also ROCCO’s KIDS NEED TO READ DAY!  Whereas I will pay tribute to MY favorite charity and it’s co-founders, Nathan Fillion, PJ Haarmsma and Denise Gary!

And kicking off the February portion of BLOGAVERSARY:  Guest post and giveaway from Ashlyn Chase!



Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Toni, the HUMAN, here:
January 24, 2012….One year ago today, ROCCO started his infamous blog!  It started out a blog of random postings and observations on the part of this VERY opinionated tuxedo cat, and grew from just random postings into a site chock full of interviews (MaryJanice Davidson, Michelle Rowen, Heather Massey, Jill Myles, Josh Getzler, Kris Weber among notable others!) As well as a fund-raising venue for Nathan Fillion’s charity, KIDS NEED TO READ! 
Rocco has now expanded from being a premier interviewer into reviews for Night Owl Reviews, and is even dabbling in novel writing…but don’t worry! The blog is his first love, and there’s a lot more to come in the New Year with upcoming interviews from Victoria Laurie and Charlaine Harris, plus some returning favorites! (and more fundraisers for KNTR – of course!)
Unfortunately, time, space and schedules prevented some of Rocco’s past interviewees from contributing full guest posts; nonetheless, they all have something to say about the BIG R:

Congratulations to Rocco, my favorite blogging cat, on his blogaversary! Ordinarily my communication with the feline set is pretty limited--particularly since I tend to stop breathing in close proximity to cats! But Rocco has this way...or maybe it's the human attached. (Hmm...) In any event, Godspeed, good Rocco, and may the next year's blogging be successful and entertaining. And I hear there may even be some form of authorship in the coming year--quite a mystery...:)…Josh Getzler,HSG Literary Agency, (agent of THE HUMAN…and potential agent to ROCCO!)

We are deeply honored to be invited to Rocco's blogaversary celebration!  Unfortunately, we won't be able to participate, but please send our best wishes to our fantastic furry feline friend!...All the gang at Sci Fi Saturday Night! (ROCCO’s first radio interview!)


While I was a little annoyed to have to take time to write this out of the usual 18-hours of sleep a pug requires, I'm happy to do it for Rocco. He's not bad...for a cat. His blog is so much fun and full of amazing advice and articles for both writers and readers. I'm  impressed he's able to do it so well in between all the time he spends slinking, scratching, and doing whatever else cats do. I try not to pay them too much attention, but Rocco's blog has caught mine! So HAPPY BLOGAVERSARY Rocco, and here's to many more years of success as a blogger!!- Sampson (Owner of Kristen and Co-editor at Kristen Weber Editorial Services)
Sampson’s Owner, Kris Weber is a former editor at NAL and friend of “The Human”. She moved from East Coast to West and now operates her own editorial service, which can be found at:
Top Ten Reasons Rocco Should Rule the World
1)      Rocco is a felinus fantasticus
2)      He loves science fiction (in fact, he can spell Kwisatz Haderach—with his tail!)
3)      He has the greatest ballie collection ever (He does, too! – the HUMAN)
4)      He oversees his domestic domain with an iron claw
5)      Rocco understands the importance of a good nap
6)      He invented the Internet
7)      He looks great in a tuxedo…even on Wednesday
8)      Rocco has a degree in political science *and* the art of sushi making, for the win
9)      He can leap down from the top of a couch in a single bound.
10)   His fur is oh so glossy and sleek - Heather Massey

(Heather Massey is a lifelong fan of science fiction romance, and also has the distinction of being ROCCO’s very first HOTSEAT interview! She searches for sci-fi romance adventures aboard her blog, The Galaxy Express.  She’s also an author: Her latest sci-fi romance is Queenie’s Brigade from Red Sage Publishing. To learn more about her published work, visit


"Big thanks to Rocco, a real cool cat for interviewing me in December. Hope you have a fur-tastic blogiversary! Sending you virtual catnip." – Michelle Rowen, bestselling author of Bitten and Smitten, Tall Dark and Fangsome, The Living in Eden Series, and the forthcoming Immortality Bites Mysteries from NAL, to name just a few!
Rocco: (blushes – can a tuxedo cat blush?  This one can)  PURR – AW, shucks, Michelle. I think you’re a cool cat too.
You can find Michelle (and all her fabulous books) at:

Tomorrow:  The Untamed and Unstoppable MaryJanice Davidson shares her EXCLUSIVE SPOILER from UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE right here! On my blog! ME-OW! This is something you won’t want to miss!


Monday, January 23, 2012

My Official Blogaversary Week!

Yes,'s finally here. Official Blogaversary Week. And you thought it would never come!

Tomorrow, some of my friends and past interviewees have arranged a day of tribute to me (blushes) so do stop by and check out their comments!

And on Wednesday, the queen of vampire chick-lit, MARY JANICE DAVIDSON, shares an EXCLUSIVE peek at some pages from the next BETSY novel, Undead and Unstable!  My blog is the ONLY place you'll get a look at these particualar pages before the book is released in June, so you wont' want to miss that! Plus two lucky readers will get a chance to win a book from MJ!

Next week: My store giveaway, and a post and giveaway by Sourcebooks author Ashlyn Chase!

Honest, folks, you don't want to miss a minute of ....BLOGAVERSARY!

AND NOW....A REPRINT OF MY VERY FIRST POSTING!  (WHAT A LONG WAY WE'VE COME, thanks to all my followers and the many authors and agents and editors who have also contributed to my blog....I love each and every one of you! MEOW!)

And lest I forget...the winner of Traci Hohenstein's giveaway is ChrisBails! Congrats, Chris - look for an email from Tracy with details of your win soon!

Originally posted 1/24/11 as FIRST POST:

Ah, good morning name is ROCCO, and I am the head cat/blogger here at the LoTempio household.

This blog's gonna be about cats, mainly...with some books thrown in. (My human made me promise that - i suppose this means I'll have to actually read HER books, too). Here I will post my catly views regarding life, love, mousing,and, yes...books.

What does a savvy cat like myself enjoy reading? Cozies, mostly. Mysteries. Books that feature animals prominently. Paranormals (I prefer mystery over romance, though. Two humans kissing - yecch!) I'll share my favorite books with you and take suggestions on new ones that anyone has to offer.

I'll also report on the comings and goings of my human, and my fellow cats here at Lotempio Manor - brother Maxx, and the two old ladies: Trixie (14) and LJ (10). Momma promised me I could have a calico chick one day - hope it's not when I'm too old to enjoy it, heh heh. My brother Maxx and I are both 2 1/2. Maxie will be 3 March 15, and my birthday is June 1.

Oh, and yes. My human wants me to mention her latest books, but my paws are tired right now. Not used to all this typing, heh heh.

We'll save that for the second post :)

Don't forget - come back tomorrow for my day of tribute and Wednesday: MJ Davidson is in the house! Meow!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Folks, you might remember Traci Hohenstein from my interview with her last year on her debut novel, ASYLUM HARBOR.  For those who don’t, here’s a bit about  her:
She lives in NW Florida with her firefighter husband and three children. She’s a full-time writer but in her spare time she loves to paddleboat – something she and her character, Rachel Scott, have in common.
Fun fact about her Rachel Scott books:  if you look closely at the covers you'll see a silhouette of the missing person in each cover. There is a firefighter in the background of Burn Out and a young woman in the water of Asylum Harbor. The paperback version of Burn Out and Asylum Harbor is called The Rachel Scott Adventures Volume 1 and features foot prints in the sand.  Traci loves to hear from readers. You can reach her at or visit her blog at
And now…I’m turning the blog over to Traci!

Thank you, ROCCO!
What’s in a name???
I love to write. It’s in my blood. I love to dream up situations and put my ideas on paper. The only place where I sometimes get stumped is naming characters. Every once in a while a great name will come to me and will fit that character to a “T”. Other times I find myself struggling to find the right name. What’s a girl to do?
While cleaning one day, I ran across my old high school yearbook. (How old? I’ll never tell.) As I was reminiscing about the old days, I noticed some of my high school friends had some pretty cool names. Voila! Problem solved. I took out a notepad and wrote down which names I thought had potential. I didn’t think it’d be a great idea to use the actual first and last name of someone I hadn’t spoken to in several years, especially if I made that person an ax murderer or something, so I mixed up the first and last names. As a result, I had a nice list of names that I could use for characters.  
Another idea I had was to run a contest on Facebook and the winner would have a character named after them. Everyone wants to see their name in a book, right? Well, most people, if you agree to make them young, rich, and fabulous. Also, if someone was helpful in doing research for me, then I’d ask permission to use their name. That’s how Suzette Breland, attorney-at-law in real life and high school friend, became an important character in Burn Out. Also, Cyndy Krapek, another high school friend, lent her name and became a FBI agent in Asylum Harbor. Leigh Ellen Barnes, another friend, won a Facebook contest and was forever eternalized as a Hollywood starlet in my latest romantic comedy, Special Delivery.
Want to see your name in lights? Comment on this post and I just might choose your name for a character in my next book, Split Decision, which will be out sometime this spring.
Now, if I could just get Rocco to agree to guest star in my next novel? I think he’d make a great character!

MEOW! I would definitely guest star in one of your novels, Traci!  The HUMAN says I’m nothing if not a big ham…
Folks, not only will Traci give one lucky reader an opportunity to see their name in print in her next book, she’s also giving away a copy of her e-books, ASYLUM HARBOR and SPLIT DECISION!  So, what are you waiting for?  Leave a comment below, along with your email address!  For extra entries, you can friend myself and/or THE HUMAN on facebook, follow me on Twitter @RoccoBlogger, tweet and/or FB about this contest, and friend Traci on FB! Just be sure to mention all you’ve done in your comment!
Contest closes midnight, Jan. 22 – we will announce the winner Jan. 23!
AND SPEAKING OF WINNERS....Selected once again using, Fluser2010 is the lucky winner of a copy of Adrienne Giordano's book, RISKING TRUST!  Congrats!

GET BUSY! And don’t forget – next week is my day of tribute, and MaryJanice Davidson shares teasers of UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE – my blog is the ONLY place you can read this!



Tuesday, January 17, 2012

BLOGAVERSARY MEWS! MaryJanice Davidson Exclusive sneak peek, review of The Crown...and more!

Just sharing a few items.....

Where can you get an EXCLUSIVE LOOK WITH SPOILERS of MaryJanice Davidson's newest Betsy novel?  RIGHT HERE, JANUARY 25TH.  That's right, MJ is helping the Big Rock celebrate his blogaversary by giving my followers the ONLY sneak peek of UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE!  Don't miss it!

I continue my career as a Night Owl Reviewer with Nancy Bilyeau's THE CROWN.  You can read about it here:

We have lots of guest posts and giveaways coming up, people, so spread the word. Here's the schedule so far:

Going on now: Adrienne Giordano interview and giveaway
February 18: Traci Hohenstein interview and giveaway
January 24 - Day of tribute - lots of guest posts and surprises!
January 25 - MaryJanice Davidson exclusive first look at Undead and Unstable - GIVEAWAY!
January 30 - Rocco's store giveaway
January 31 - Ashlyn Chase guest post - giveaway
February 6 - Jeff Cohen guest post - giveaway

Plus, we have a lot of cool stuff coming up in 2012 - more with MaryJanice and Michelle Rowen, and - hold onto your hats - we will also be interviewing VICTORIA LAURIE AND CHARLAINE HARRIS!  At dates to be determined :)

So folks, what are you waiting for! Check out my Feb 13 post and enter the Adrienne Giordano giveaway - RIGHT NOW!  Winner announced tomorrow. Contest closes at midnight. 


Friday, January 13, 2012


In my hotseat today…author Adrienne Giordano!
Adrienne Giordano writes romantic suspense and women's fiction.  She is a Jersey girl at heart, but now lives in the Midwest with her workaholic husband, sports obsessed son and Buddy the Wheaten Terrorist (Terrier). She is a co-founder of Romance University blog. For more information on Adrienne's Private Protectors series please visit Adrienne can also be found on Facebook at and Twitter at
And now, in my HOTSEAT!  ADRIENNE!
R: Hello, Adrienne and welcome.
A:  Thank you, Rocco. A pleasure, to be sure. Before we begin, let me send my Wheaten Terrorist away. He has issues with cats. Very territorial.
R: Tell us a bit about your latest release, and how you got the idea for it?
A: Risking Trust is a romantic suspense about Roxann Thorgesson, a control-freak who, after the death of her father, takes over as publisher of Chicago's second-largest newspaper. To add to her stress, I threw Michael Taylor, her ex-boyfriend and CEO of his own security company, at her. Michael's estranged wife has been murdered, and he offers Roxann an exclusive to his headline-making murder accusation. In return, he wants help uncovering the true killer. As the book cover says "when their investigation leads to a city hall conspiracy, both their lives and their newly reignited flame could be permanently extinguished…"
How I came up with the idea? I have a newspaper background and wondered what it would be like for a woman to take her father's place at the helm of a major newspaper and immediately have to sacrifice her emotional stability to nab a blockbuster story.  I thought it would be fun to explore the different levels of stress she would encounter. When it comes to my characters, I like to push their buttons! J
R: What sort of research, if any, do you do for your novels? 
A: It depends. For Risking Trust, I knew a lot about the newspaper industry already. I also harassed my husband (he still works in the industry) and all his friends for information. For the book I just finished, I needed to hire a researcher because there was one element (and I'm not going to say what that element is.J) I couldn't find information on. The researcher was able to help me.
I also read non-fiction about whatever topic I'm planning for my book.  I find non-fiction books help me develop personality traits for characters. Most of my heroes have military backgrounds so I'm constantly reading articles and biographies based on life in the military. 

R: What’s a must have for you when you are writing? What aids the creative process?
A: I wish there was a magic bullet (I so wish!), but I really just need quiet. Anything else distracts me.  I generally write in sprints and try not to edit until I've worn myself out. For me, stopping to edit what I've just written interrupts the flow and I lose my momentum. If I'm stuck on a scene, I'll grab my IPod and go for a long walk. There's something about the fresh air that always gets my creative juices flowing.
R: Who are some of your must read authors?
A: When I'm looking for romantic suspense, I look for a Suzanne Brockmann book. If I want a thriller, Harlan Coben is my go-to guy. I'm also a Lisa Gardner fan. On the lighter side, I enjoy Kristan Higgins' books. She always makes me laugh.
R: Now, Just for fun:
Your Favorite:
TV Show – Right now it's Revenge. Cannot get enough of it.  I'm waiting for that weasel of a so-called best friend to go down!
Movie – As Good As It Gets. I also love Pride and Prejudice and the Godfather. My taste varies. J
Book – Ooh, tough one. I have plenty of books in different genres that I'll read again and again, but I honestly don't think I have one favorite. If I'm in the mood for a thriller, I'll revisit No Second Chance by Harlan Coben. Crazy tension in that book! For romantic suspense, I'd go with Flashpoint by Suzanne Brockmann. For contemporary, I love Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie.
Drink – Diet Coke
Food – Anything Italian.
Detectives or Demons?  Detectives
Beach or Mountain?  Beach!
Cat or Dog? Dog.  (R: A-HEM!  Well….okay.)
Day or Night? Day.
 R: What is one thing your readers would be most surprised to know about you?
A:  That I once almost ran over my instructor in a motorcycle safety class. Worse, the guy was on crutches. Yeesh.  I didn't do so well in that class!
R: What is the craziest thing you've ever done?  
A: Haven't done it yet. Although, I recently walked across a rope bridge that spanned a gator pit. (See photo above)
R: What do you hope readers will most take away from your writing?
A:  I always hope readers will connect with the characters and enjoy the journey. My characters tend to be damaged (some more than others!), but I try to make those characters relatable. If the reader likes my characters, then that's about the best thing I can ask for.   
Thank you for participating, Adrienne!
Folks – pick up your copy of Risking Trust, THEN CHECK OUT ADRIENNE’S  BOOKS!

Adrienne's books available at:

Now…one lucky reader will win a copy of RISKING TRUST!  Leave your name and a comment in the comments section of this blog. You all know the drill:  to gain extra entries, tweet about this contest, mention it on Facebook, friend myself and the Human on Facebook!  Put down all you’ve done in your comment, as well as an email address where we can contact you if you’re the lucky winner!  Contest closes midnight, January 17th – winner announced January 18th!

And now, the two lucky winners of Camilla Chafer's giveaway are:
Watch your emails, guys, for a notice from Camilla!

And now for a special announcement....MaryJanice Davidson will be giving y'all an advance peek WITH SPOILERS of her new novel, UNDEAD AND UNSTABLE! MY BLOG IS THE ONLY PLACE YOU CAN READ THIS!  So I'm excited!  MEOW!

MJ's post will appear January 25th. Here's the rest of Blogaversary so far:

January 18:  Traci Hohenstein post/giveaway
January 24:  Official one year anniversary - Day of tribute - posts from lots of surprise guests!
January 25:  MaryJanice Davidson guest post/giveaway
January 30:  Rocco store giveaway
January 31:  Ashlyn Chase guest post/giveaway
Feb. 6:  Jeff Cohen guest post/giveaway

Keep following the blogaversary- you never know what questions I will ask on January 30th!
Next: Guest post from Traci Hohenstein!