October 6, 2015

From Survival to Success by Karen Magill

Please welcome a very special guest, author, motivational speaker, and mentor, Karen Magill! Welcome Karen! :-)

I want to take you back to June 5, 2000. That was the day my life changed drastically, forever. The alarm sounds and I rolled over to turn it off. But my left arm didn’t move so I silenced it with my right hand. Then I tried to climb out of bed but as soon as I put weight on my legs, the left one collapsed.  I didn’t have a lot of time to worry about it though because nature was calling. I crawled the short distance to the bathroom and hauled my body on the toilet. After I finished there, I was able to put some weight on my left leg and I pulled myself up to the vanity and leaned against it. While brushing my teeth, I noticed that the left side of my face wasn’t moving. It is as if someone has drawn an invisible line down the center of my body and one side works while the other doesn’t. Something was wrong, but what? 

Once at work and when the doctor’s office opened, I phoned and made an appointment. He poked and prodded me before sending me to emergency at the hospital across the street.  I sat in the emergency waiting room at St. Paul’s Hospital where my grandmother had died of a brain tumor in 1937. The thought of a brain tumor crossed my mind.  That wasn’t it.

I didn’t get to find out that day. I waited for five hours before being seen by a doctor then a neurology intern. Five hours and I get an intern. The intern poked and prodded me before going to make some phone calls. By that time, I was fed up. I didn’t care anymore! Okay I did care but I wanted to go home. I was tired, hungry and craving a cigarette. I was there seven and a half hours before I got to leave.

Two days later, I went to see a neurologist who poked and prodded me and asked the same questions as the other doctors. I tried to be a good patient but I was starting to get scared and there were still no answers. My mother had come to the appointment with me and when we left, I turned to her and said,

“Mom, I’m afraid one night I am going to go to sleep and not wake up.” She took my hand and answered,

“Then you call me every morning so you have to wake up.” I have an extra special mom.

I really wanted to know why this happened but it was more than that. In 1984, a horse I was riding had a heart attack and fell on me, cracking my skull. Ever since then I had strange things happening with my body like sudden numbness in my limbs, unexplained pains. Doctors kept telling me there was nothing wrong; it was all in my mind. I knew my problems were real so my fear now was that they wouldn’t find anything and again I would be left with symptoms and no answers.

On June 14, after an MRI, the neurologist said “Multiple Sclerosis”.  I viewed this as good news...at first, I finally have proof there was something wrong. As my late father said, “the devil you know is better than the one you don’t”.

One of the things I remember thinking, and don’t ask me why, was that I’ll never again be able to climb the 2.9 kilometre hike up the side of Grouse Mountain  known as the Grouse Grind. That thought was quickly replaced with thank God, I don’t have to climb the Grind again. 

Diagnosis in hand, I thought I would take time off work, then go back and my life would continue as normal.  Was I ever wrong! Remember that saying: man plans, God laughs?  God was laughing at me. I went back to work after five weeks off, the paralysis went away but I was still weak on my left side. One of the symptoms of MS is chronic fatigue and I was exhausted all the time plus dealing with symptoms.  Working full time was difficult for me. I couldn’t afford to work part time because if I did have to go on disability, my income would be based on the part time salary.

In September, I went to the MS Clinic and it was decided I would be better off leaving work.  MS took the best job I had ever had away from me. A job it took me a year and a half to get. I was devastated.  I thought my life was over. I was 35 years old. I imagined myself sitting alone in my one bedroom apartment for the next forty or fifty years, watching television and just existing. Maybe surrounded by a bunch of cats.

I couldn’t see a future for myself. I didn’t realize that I had been given a gift, the gift to start my life over.  Ever since I was a child, I dreamed of being a published author – now, I have five books published. My first book, The Bond, A Paranormal Love Story, won an award, was translated into Turkish and a few movie producers have looked at it. My only nonfiction book, On The RightSide, My Story of Survival and Success, was nominated by a British site for best nonfiction and best cover. I have interviews in print and on radio shows, both online and off. People ask me if I would be interested in being interviewed, I don’t always approach them.

I have been asked how I did it, how I went from walking with a cane and facing a desperate future to where I am now. It was gradual. I didn’t go from waking up partially paralyzed to publishing books within months. It took years to get myself to that point and I have slid back a few times. When times get really tough though, I like to look at letter I received from Rick Hansen in which he told me to “focus on what I can do and do the best with what I have”. I do that and find there is more I can do than I ever thought.

In 2013, I stopped using the cane I had for 13 years and that’s when I knew it was time to write my story. In early 2014, I self-published On The Right Side, My Story of Survival and Success. However, I knew the book wasn’t enough to reach all the people I want to share my story with so I decided to face one of my biggest fears – public speaking.

In March of 2014, I got up on stage at the BIL Conference and told my story. It was short, I forgot part of the speech but I was hooked. I joined a local Toastmasters a few months later and have been searching for opportunities to spread my message of survival and success ever since.

I want to do more than just have people hear my story though. I want those with a chronic illness or disability realize they can accomplish so much more than they think they are capable of. So I launched a mentor program entitled “The 90-Day Turnaround: How to Transform the Quality of Your Life Starting Today.” Now I am able to work with people, one on one to show them, and the world that having a disability doesn’t have to stop us.

I have come a long way from that 35-year-old who thought her life was over just because she lost a good job and was unable to work a traditional job. I have been through a lot, had my ups and downs but I survived flourished. And I have a long ways to go yet before I am finished. It is going to be an interesting journey.

Webinar, Time To Take Your Life Back, explains the 90-Day Turnaround program. http://go.cmapn.com/karen-magill-webinar/

Facebook 90-Day Turnaround page: https://www.facebook.com/90DayTurnaround?ref=hl

September 21, 2015

New E-book!!

Well, I freely admit it, I've been AWOL for a a few months from my blog and website, but...I have a really good reason, one that I am super excited about! During that two month period I was working on my first adult coloring book. I'm sure you're all like,  "coloring book?" I thought you wrote romance! Have no fear, an new romance book is in the works as well and I'm hoping to have that finished and out by December 2015.

Anyway, back to the coloring book, LOL, this one is a mandala coloring book that I had a blast creating the drawings for. I've always loved to do any kind of art as most of you know. I paint, do Native American beadwork, doodle, and create 3D art whenever I have a chance. They all help me to relax and unwind. Plus they're just fun! And I've now added coloring to the mix. I started out downloading free adult coloring pages from around the web, and then well, I decided I wanted to create my own. I already had some ideas about how to do that, and then I took a class on how to do it and I was as you can imagine off! And believe it or not, coloring is helping me with my writing as well, I've added an entire chapter to my latest WIP and I couldn't be happier. The book is coming together and I even know the end, shocker, I know! Usually I just kind of write my way to the end, I'm a confirmed pantser when it comes to writing and I freely admit it. LOL

So, without further ado, I want to share with you my brand new adult coloring book Pretty Mandalas, Book 1, Adult Coloring Book. This is an e-book by the way, not a print book and I'll tell you why. I love coloring books that are e-books because I can print the designs multiple times and try different color schemes. While print books are great, you always have the issues of the possibility with the printer putting part of the design in the binding, or not centering it even though you sent them the document with it centered, or crappy paper that bleeds through to the next design, leaving you with a design you can't then use, just to name a few. Most of the authors who have created adult coloring books and used Createspace have had one or more of these issues, so I've opted to go e-book only for the time being. I may eventually put the book into paperback, but for now I'm hoping my readers and colorists will prefer as I do an e-book. Oh, and while the designs and book are copyrighted, you are are free to print out the designs and color them as often as you like for personal use only though.

Right now the book is available through the Coffee Time Romance E-bookstore and it's 20% off which means instead of $2.99, it's $2.39, so take advantage of it while you can, this reduced price will be gone soon! Oh, and the mandala on the cover is just one of the 25 designs, that range from simple to complex.


25 pretty mandala designs for the discerning colorist. With both simple and complex mandala designs, adults and older children who enjoy coloring are sure to find something to tickle their fancy and inspire their creativity! This e-book is offered in a PDF version only so colorists can print as many copies of the designs to color as they like.


A Short History of the Coloring Book

Coloring books have been around for a lot longer than most folks think. In fact, the first coloring books were created by the McLoughlin Brothers partnering with Kate Greenaway who initially published the “Little Folks Painting Book” in 1879. They continued to publish coloring books until the 1920’s when they joined the Milton Bradley Company.

Before crayons, coloring books were intended to be painted rather than colored with crayons. Also, even after the 1930’s when crayons were invented, coloring books were made so the pictures could be both painted and colored so users had a choice.

Another historical fact that many people don’t know is that in the beginning some coloring books were actually used to advertise products such as the one created by Richard F. Outcault who created the character Buster Brown to help advertise shoes from the Brown Shoe Company. This character was well known to Americans in the early twentieth century since he was also the star of a comic strip by the same name. Coloring books were also created to showcase coffee and piano brands as well!

More recently we’ve begun to see that coloring books aren’t just for kids anymore! In fact, there are hundreds of coloring books created just for adults. While there were coloring books for adults prior to the adult coloring book boom that has taken place in 2015, Scottish artist Johanna Brasford has been the one to really get it going, starting with her first adult coloring book, Enchanted Forest: An Inky Quest and Coloring Book. Since then there has been no stopping adult coloring book creators, nor the adults who want to color!  

July 17, 2015

Flash Fiction Friday: Her Own Angel

You know I used to think it was cool being half-angel. But what they don't tell you is that when you are you will always have a target painted on your back. That both angels and humans will hate you, that demons, and monsters will be gunning for you, all because you're an "abomination" not meant to exist.

Most half-angels don't get wings, I'm lucky or so my guardian Gabriel says. Personally I'm not so sure. I mean you try and get a job when you've got white wings that stretch out four feet on each side. And my dad, you know the angel? The man or angel or well you know what I mean is curiously absent for my entire life until I turned eighteen. Then what does he do? He shows up, introduces himself, tells me there's nothing he can do for me, after all, he has "a job to do for God." But, and that's a big but, he says to me, "I'm not supposed to do this, but here." and hands me a short black sword with a silver tip. "Use this to protect yourself." Then the bastard kisses me on the forehead and disappears. No smoke, no popping sound, just one minute he's there and the next he isn't.

I swear if it wasn't for Gabriel, I'd either be dead or wishing I was. Right after dear old Dad disappeared, another angel appeared. Like my dad he was beautiful, but unlike dad, he had black hair and cerulean colored eyes. He introduced himself as my "guardian" and then proceeded to teach me how to use my sword. Unlike my dad, Gabriel is not one of the "fallen," as my dad is. His connection to God is unbroken. Most of what you've read about the Fallen is untrue. They're not necessarily evil, although they can be, and many of them are still trying carry out God's will. In fact, they're so busy interfering with humans and other races that they've completely lost their connection to God, so they're just guessing. Not so for Gabriel.

I asked him once why he was always watching over me. His response was, "Every living being in the universe has free will. You asked for help, and I am your answer."

The funny thing? I don't remember asking for help, but apparently the ominpotentness himself heard me. I stopped asking questions after that. The fact is Gabriel has a body to die for, looks that any girl would love to stare at every day for the rest of her life. And he loves me, or so he says. And I mean it's hard not to love someone that always has your best interests at heart. There's this one little problem though, you see, I don't just love Gabriel, I'm in love with him. Something that is forbidden. That's one of the ways angels fall because they aren't allowed to love humans in that way. Of course I'm not wholly human and that complicates things even more. And since I don't want Gabriel to fall, I have to keep my feelings to myself. 

Like I said, sometimes being a half-angel sucks. Because while I may be in love with my guardian, I can never have him, for if you are half-angel and you knowingly cause another angel to fall, whether you are human or half-angel you share that angel's fate. And no angel, or half-angel for that matter wants to spend eternity trying to figure out how to get back into heaven. 

July 11, 2015

New YouTube Channel! #babyanimals

I don't know about the rest of you but when I've had or am having a crappy day, I like to watch funny animal videos. I often watch them in between bouts of writing as well just to think about something else for a few minutes and it can work wonders for me in the sense that it allows my mind to relax. Let me tell you when I'm stuck, or experiencing writers block sometimes all it takes is a few of these videos and something just unsticks and I'm able to start writing again.

Because I have so much fun watching other people's funny animal videos I decided to start making my own. So, and I think I need a funny animal video day, hmmm...may have to add that to my schedule. LOL

Anywho, I have a new funny animal channel that I'm calling Cute Baby Animals. For now these are videos of baby animals doing laugh out loud stuff. I'm adding the two I have so far below, and enjoy! :-)

July 4, 2015

Sneak Peek: Through a Dark Mirror by Regina Paul... #ebook #romance #fiction

I love writing books that have Native American heroes and heroines. Most of you that have read my books know this already because it doesn't matter what the genre is 9 times out of 10 there's going to be a Native American main character. This is especially true with my Native American Paranormal Romantic Suspense Through a Dark Mirror. The hero is what my husband would call a "common Indian" meaning this is not someone with any particular special gifts or powers. And the heroine is a caucasian woman who has a past life as a Lakota medicine woman. Here's a bit of a sneak peek!


Sometimes evil follows you from one life to the next… 

Summer Thompson grew up around Native Americans. She has great respect for Native American peoples and traditions. Because of that respect she has made it a point in her work as an antiques dealer to purchase and return sacred objects back to the tribes they came from when she finds them. 

Hawk Kills Pretty Enemy, a successful Lakota business owner makes it a point of driving around in his tow truck looking for stranded drivers. He figures he has hit the jackpot with the pretty blonde behind the wheel of the Mercedes Benz sitting on the side of the road. When he discovers that she is the Summer Thompson that has returned so many sacred objects and artifacts back to the People, he is even more happy to help. But it does not take long in Summer’s presence for Hawk to begin to suspect that Summer may be someone he has been searching for his whole life. 
But when an artifact of great power comes into Summer’s possession, and an ancient evil returns, will Summer remember what she needs to in time to save the man she is coming to love? 

And here's the short excerpt and sneak peak!

The glow from her bedside lamp spilled into the living area, casting shadows on the walls and windows.
Her eyes glanced over to the bay windows in the south of the room. A chill raced up her spine when for a second, an image seemed to appear in the glass, and it was not a pleasant one. Whatever it was seemed to be nothing more than skin hanging off of a skeleton and glowing red eyes.
Summer put one hand to her throat, backing up. It can’t be real! she thought. The figure almost seemed to loom from the glass and enter the room. Her throat closed on a scream, but then she blinked, and the image disappeared.
She sprinted to the different light switches around the room and turned them all on before she felt like she could walk up to the glass and look out. Nothing. The parking lot beneath her two-story apartment and shop was empty, but well lit as usual. No one was walking around, and her Benz appeared unharmed by the illusion she’d seen.
The vision on top of the dream and the strange phone call had rattled her. What does it all mean, if anything? Were the incidences even related?
For the first time, she was uncomfortable and didn’t feel safe in her own home. Summer wrapped herself up in a hug, for once wishing that she didn’t live alone. 

(c) Copyright 2015 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.

June 26, 2015

Flash Fiction Friday: The Rainbow Bridge

I watched as the bridge materialized and two spirits began to cross over it to the other side. Death is part of life and watching spirits cross over the rainbow bridge is miraculous, but I knew I was going to be dealing with the fallout from families momentarily. It would have been so much easier to just not be in any kind of field where I had to deal with grief stricken family and friends. Sometimes it just didn't pay to have the ability to see and communicate with ghosts. 

I could hear the mother sobbing, and when I looked over her husband was trying to comfort her, but it didn't appear to be having much effect. Something was fake about her behavior, it smelled like an act. I couldn't put my finger on it, but it just wasn't real. 

Suddenly the coldness that envelopes my body when a spirit is near chilled the air around me. I turned my head just a bit and found myself staring into a pair of violet eyes framed by short black hair. Hair that wasn't dyed. There was a blood tear tattoo just beneath the corner of one of those eyes. A silver eyebrow ring adorned her left eyebrow and its twin was in her bottom lip. 

"I wasn't supposed to die." She said, her lips not moving.

I couldn't talk to her here, because no one else could see the young goth woman but me. I discreetly motioned to follow me outside to the garden area. There was no one there at this time of morning. Once I was there, I turned to see if she had followed. Her image was standing next to me.

"What do you mean?" 

The spirit looked uncomfortable for a moment. "I wanted to know what happens when we die, so I told my mom and she said, she could help me. That she could help me die for a little while and then she could bring me back. She's a nurse you know."

I turned and stared at the couple through the glass in the waiting room. They weren't paying any attention to me, the mother was too busy putting on her act and attracting a lot of attention. At least the act made sense now.  

"So what did she tell you to do that would allow you to die for a little while and then she'd miraculously revive you after a short time?"

"Have you ever seen that movie The Frightners?"

I had actually and I was quickly seeing where this was going. "She had you get into a walk-in freezer and she locked you in?"

"Yeah." Goth girl was looking a little sheepish now. "My dad owns a restaurant." She shrugged.

"So, what went wrong?" I had a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. Some sixth sense was telling me this wasn't about some goth kid wanting to know what it was like to die anymore, and had become murder.

"She didn't revive me." Anger bled out of her tone. "It seems she had taken out a million dollar life insurance policy on me. I mean I know my mother isn't like other mother's she's not all touchy feely, you know? But I didn't think she wanted me dead."

I looked at the spirit again. Black lipstick, black nail polish, piercings, purple t-shirt, celtic crosses with amethysts in the centers, black slacks and biker boots. She'd wanted to know what it was like to die, but she hadn't counted on her avaricious and greedy mother. Now she knew what death meant, but she was also stuck and I had a feeling she wasn't going to cross over until her mother's guilt was clearly established. 

Honestly, the dead are easy to deal with, it's the living that make my job so much harder. I nodded at Charity, such an old fashioned name for a girl that was anything but. "I'll see what I can do. No promises, but your mother does need to pay for what she's done."

June 25, 2015

Eye Candy Thursday: New Eye Candy!

Who doesn't love looking at hot men? I love finding new photos that I can legally share on my blog and this time is no exception. Check out this guy! While I'm not overly enamoured with the hair style, I love the guy's face, so chiseled!

June 16, 2015

An Experience I'll Never Forget...

Have you ever had one of those super weird experiences that you never thought would happen in a million, zillion years? Well, I just had that experience yesterday morning. Figures with it being Monday that the universe would pick that day to remind me not to get too comfortable.

So, like most mornings I ride the bus to my job at a busy hospital OR and yesterday morning was no different, except for the fact that the bus was crowded and I couldn't get my usual up front seat. I've never liked sitting next to people I don't know, mainly because they always seem to want to chat with me. Now, don't get me wrong, chatting is fine, but I love to read and having this twenty minutes to read and listen to soothing music on my Kindle is just awesome! I love to chat and get to know people too, just not during my "me time" on the way to work. Anyway, there are two seats at the front that are single seats, not bench seats where you have to share, so I like to sit on one of those in the morning. Unfortunately, this morning was different. I ended up having to take a seat farther towards the back of the bus. No big deal and I lucked out, no one sat next to me. So like usual, I read and listened to music and just relaxed on my way in to work. When we were getting close to my stop I rang the bell like normal and then got up and went to the back door. Now most drivers automatically open the back door whether there are people in the back or not to be sure that everyone can get off the bus. This driver however did not. Now in and of itself that's not that big of a deal, when it became a big deal was when I called out loudly "Back door, please!" And got crickets for a response.

At this point we're to my stop. I mumble to myself, "Shit! He's not going to open the back door!" So, I begin jogging towards the front door, my steps loud. There is a woman who was at the front of the bus and she gets off. You'll never guess what happened next! Wondering? The driver closes the front door! I'm only half way to the door at this point and I call out loudly, "Please open the door!" I'm thinking to myself, "This idiot is going to drive off and not let me off!" Does the driver open the door for me, does he apologize?  No! Instead he leaves it closed. By this time I'm to his seat, and he leans out of it and leans down until his face is like an inch or two from mine, and says, "It's dark back there, I didn't see you." I clearly got it that he thought he could intimidate me. I only glanced at him as he said this because I had no idea what the wack job was going to do at this point. I said to him, "Okay, fine. Now open the door." Fortunately, he did open the door and let me off. But I had to ask him three times, and he clearly cut off my ability to get off the bus twice. Oh, did I mention there were no witnesses since he waited until I was the last person on the bus to pull this crap?

I still do not understand his reasoning for trapping me on the bus with him. It was only for a few minutes but it was enough to get my heart racing and for fear to slide down my spine. I felt threatened, and intimidated and like my safety was in jeopardy. If you're wondering why I'm sharing this with you, it is for this reason. We are all taught that if we're in trouble, we can flag down a bus and the driver will help us. Someone following you? Flag down a city bus and get help. Someone hurt you and you got away? Flag down a bus if you see one and they'll help you get help. I've even seen advertisements on public transportation saying that if you need help bus drivers are people that can help you. But what do you do when the bus driver is the one putting your safety at risk?

I always thought bus drivers for public transportation were safe, that if I was on a bus I was safe. The fact is this is not true. I filed a complaint against this bus driver as soon as I got to work. I have heard nothing from Metro about it as of yet. My concern is what if he does this to some little girl who's twelve or fifteen and alone who is riding the city bus to school because she missed her school bus. What if this little girl doesn't know what to do or gets scared and this bus driver actually does something other than keeping the doors closed for a minute or two before letting her off. Quite frankly it doesn't bare thinking about.

This same bus driver was driving my bus this morning. In order to stay safe, I sat at the very front of the bus and behind him so I was not visible. I also made sure that when it was my turn to get off there were still people on the bus so there were witnesses in case another incident happened. I also kept my keys handy as a weapon if necessary. And I will be purchasing pepper spray this week so I have that as well. I would encourage anyone who is a woman or who has daughters, nieces, friends with the same to teach these girls and heck the boys too for that matter, that even bus drivers are not safe. Make sure they know what to do to stay safe when they're riding public transportation, and that they should trust no one, including the bus driver. I let myself get too comfortable, and this has been a good reminder to me to always stay aware of my surroundings and what is going on around me.

There will be those who think I'm overreacting to this incident but I'm of the mind, better to overreact than to wind up raped, murdered or some other awful fate. All you have to do is watch the news to know that it is often the person you think would never do something that commits these sorts of crimes.

May 19, 2015

Author Spotlight: Dangerous Magic by

Please welcome Jessica Lauryn today to my blog! And guess what, in addition to getting a chance to check out a really cool story, Jessica tells me that Dangerous Magic, as well as the first two books in the Pinnacles of Power Series, Dangerous Secret, and Dangerous Proposal (Dangerous Magic is book 3) are all .99 for a limited time on Amazon! Just go to the link below to get the first three books in this series!


Corinne Johnson's world was shattered years ago, when a strange discovery in her husband's briefcase led to her becoming separated from her children. Now, engaged to re-marry the man responsible, Corinne is determined to always be in Ethan and Mattie's lives, even if it means being in a marriage without passion. But when she has a mysterious dream in which she kisses her once coworker Jack Madera, Corinne's plans of securing her future quickly go up in smoke. Jack, the sexy and mysterious Wiccan she knew years ago, is back in North Conway. And in the midst of everything else, Corinne begins to suspect the most erotic dream of her life was never a dream at all.

After recently coming to a fork in the road, Jack Madera decides the only way he can move forward with his life is if he learns the identity of his biological father. But when his search takes him to North Conway, the town in which his old coworker Corinne Johnson lives, Jack realizes his visit may not be as short-lived as he'd hoped. Drawn to the woman he has always shared a deep connection with, Jack puts his non-existent heart on the line. He casts a spell which takes him and Corinne down a path they never saw coming.


Corinne rubbed her arms as she stood, realizing that the temperature had dropped significantly. The wind had kicked up and it was rustling swiftly through the trees. All of them swayed in the same direction, their long pine branches blowing toward the river, the mountain above it, and valley below. The powerful gust seemed to whisper something over the sound of the rushing water below it.Corinne.
Assuring herself that the wind didn’t talk, Corinne buttoned her jacket and slipped her hands inside of her pockets. Moving along the dirt path, she’d only walked a few steps when she heard the sound again. Someone was chanting. And they were calling her name. Corinne.

Corinne’s heart thumped in her chest. Someone was there watching her, only she couldn’t see them. As she turned in the direction of the trees, she felt a warm sensation spread along her arms and legs. It seemed to urge her in the direction that the sound was coming from—the woods on the other side of the river.

Filled with an overwhelming desire to follow the sound, Corinne turned toward the river. The body of water was shallow, full of large rocks which made it difficult, yet not impossible, to cross to the other side.

Lifting one leg, she placed the sole of her shoe against the wet stone beneath it. Keeping her arms out to the sides to maintain her balance, she stepped from one rock to the other, moving stealthily over the rush of the water, bending to place her hands against the final large rock for support. She stepped onto the ground, finding that she was encased in a maze of thin trees which lined the riverbank. She was on a hill, which began to level off the lower it went. Looking down toward what appeared to be the base of the mountain, Corinne was overpowered by the desire to move deeper into the forest.

Travelling on without hesitation, Corinne allowed her instincts as well as the newly reappeared moon to guide her. Never before had she done anything so reckless. But this strong inner feeling told her that she was safe, that her children were safe, and that she needed to stop hesitating and keep moving.
Corinne wandered through grass, dirt and rocks, unafraid of what sorts of wild animals might be lurking about or how deep into the woods she’d gone. The forest was one gigantic maze of trees and they were difficult to navigate through when all of them looked the same. She wasn’t entirely sure of how to go back the way she’d come. Yet her legs walked on.

Sometime later when her feet were about to give out she noticed a streak of orange light shining through the trees. There was a clearing ahead, and in its center was a fire. A person was standing several feet away from her, facing the fire. Corinne kept her eyes on the back of the person’s head, coming to realize as she moved across the small, open field that he or she was wearing a black cloak, and that a hood covered his or her head. The person appeared to be as tall as the trees surrounding them, and seemed to emanate as much heat as the fire itself. She crept closer until she and the figure were standing only a few feet apart.

Corinne’s hand lifted itself into the air, and, as if by magic, it touched down against the shoulder before her. The figure turned around, his striking green eyes locking with hers as a smile that could only be described as wicked formed on his face. He tossed back his hood, closing the distance between them, snatching her wrist.

“Jack!” Corinne’s heart pounded. She intended to throw a hand over her mouth, but one of her hands was trapped and the other one tingled uncontrollably, remaining at her side.

“Hello, Corinne,” Jack said in a deep, drawl voice. “It’s been a long time.”

Seven years to be exact. But standing beside Jack Madera, her once coworker and friend, Corinne felt as though she’d stepped back in time and into a dream. Come to think of it, all of it felt like a dream, particularly since she didn’t seem to be in control of her movements. But if she was dreaming, why did the fire’s flames feel so hot? And why was her pulse racing like the ticking of a clock?

Jack, whose face was sprinkled with dark facial hair that was only slightly thinner than the hair on his head, bore down on her. He smelled of incense and musk, a sweet and alluring mixture which, combined with the scent of the woods around them, was distinctly male. So lost in a mix of confusion and desire, Corinne didn’t even realize that this large fingers had closed over hers. Jack squeezed her hand and his smile widened as he lifted it, bringing it against his mouth. He kissed her palm, sending a powerful rush of need along her skin.

Corinne swallowed as she attempted to slip her hand free. But she was powerless to remove it, and it remained encased in Jack’s.

“How did I…”

Jack smiled and leaned in close, bringing his mouth against her ear. “Get here?” he whispered. “I might have helped you out a bit. But you simply did as your desires dictated.”

Corinne gasped as Jack shortened the distance between them, trying without success to keep a respectable amount of personal space. She became aware of his body as it pressed against hers, and of his heat, which was hotter than the fire itself. She had always known that Jack was a witch—anyone could have gotten that simply by virtue of the pentagram he wore around his neck. But she’d never realized that he was capable of doing…whatever this was, until now.

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An author of Contemporary Romantic Suspense, Jessica Lauryn is most intrigued by dark heroes, who have many demons to conquer...but little trouble enticing female companions into their beds! She feels that the best romances are those where the hero is already seducing the heroine from that first point of contact. 

In Jessica's debut series, The Pinnacles of Power, five troubled bad boys: Ryan, Alec, Colin, Lucas and Jack must let go of the mistakes of their pasts as they battle the dangers surrounding an underground organization called Project Gemstone. Each man crosses paths with a strong, feisty heroine who has the ability to capture his heart and change the course of his life forever. Ryan's story, Dangerous Secret, kicks off the series in the picturesque town of North Conway, New Hampshire. 

Jessica is a proud member of both Romance Writers of America and her local chapter, New Jersey Romance Writers. When she's not writing, she enjoys listening to as much 80's music as possible, keeping current with the story lines on Days of Our Lives and The Young and the Restless, shopping for the latest fashions and the prettiest of antiques, and taking long walks in nature where she can daydream about anything romantic. Though she resides in New Jersey, her heart belongs to the White Mountain National Forest in New Hampshire.

May 14, 2015

Eye Candy Thursday

Here's another sexy man candy! I love it when I actually find photos that I can legally use. And I love this one! Enjoy!