Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Long Road to Delicious Temptation

It's finally here! It's release day for my new Brazen novel DELICIOUS TEMPTATION!

To say it's been a long journey for this book would be an understatement. Because this was the book that almost wasn't written.

In 2013, having just published my first novella, I attended the California Dreamin Writers Conference  in Irvine, Calif. It was my first conference and I was overwhelmed by the great workshops being offered.

During one of these fantastic workshops, an editor from a well-known publishing house told attendees that she would read our pitches if we submitted them to her at the end of the workshop. I had no story in mind and nothing written on my laptop, but even I knew that this was a golden opportunity. So instead of listening to her speak, I plotted. I'm not exactly sure how the idea for a food romance set in a Mexican bakery came to me. But it did. Kind of. By the end of the workshop, all I had was a couple of scribbles on a piece of paper. So I asked the editor if I could turn in the pitch later and she said as long as I got it to her before she left the conference, she'd read it.

That night, my friends and I gathered in one of their hotel rooms to write and I worked on my pitch. At one point, I became so frustrated that I told them I was going to give up. Like good friends do, they told me I couldn't and helped me flesh out a bare-bones outline for the story that would eventually become DELICIOUS TEMPTATION.

I turned it in and within a week, I got a request from the editor's assistant to see the completed manuscript. What? I was shocked. After I picked myself up off the floor, I emailed back and confessed it wasn't ready and could I turn it in after a few months? The assistant said that was fine and I got to work on writing the book.

I wrote like a crazy woman for about six weeks straight. I got to about 48,000 words of the minimum required 60,000 and then I stopped writing. I could blame a few things -- getting sick, the death of my cousin, life in general. Then I heard from a friend that the editor left the publisher and that gave me the biggest excuse of all to not touch the story again.

Remember those author friends I told you about? Well, they weren't about to let me off the hook. Months passed and every so often I'd get a nudge, "Did you finish that book yet?" "When are you going to start writing again?" "If you need me to look at the first chapter, I can."

Although I had long stopped believing that I could write this book, my friends never did.

Then last year, when I heard about Entangled Publishing's submission call for "Dirty Talkers" for its Brazen line, something sparked. I loved reading the Brazens from Entangled. And for the first time in a long time, I got excited about my story and the possibility of it becoming a Brazen.

And so I started writing.

The final book, the one being released everywhere today, is so much more than I ever thought it could be. While the basic pitch is pretty much the same as the one I scribbled onto a piece of paper during that editor's workshop, the story's passion and heart developed during this journey.

So while I sometimes kick myself for not finishing this story earlier, I also think that I wasn't meant to. The timing wasn't right. The publisher wasn't right. My experience as an author wasn't right. In other words, the story wasn't ready to be told.

Until today.

And that means it's time to celebrate! I'll be visiting other blogs this week and giving away some prizes along the way. You're welcome to visit me -- just see the schedule below. Of course, we can't celebrate without a party...or two. I'm holding a Facebook party from 5 to 11 p.m. (CST) and my guest hosts are Katee Robert, Megan Erickson, Louisa Bacio and Nikki Prince. Sign up here if you'd like to join us!

I'm also throwing a live in-person party on Friday, May 22 in Los Angeles. For more info and to RSVP, click here.

Finally, I just wanted to take a moment to thank my author friends and my family for their continued support and inspiration. You may not have written this book, but you definitely helped finish it. <3


The only thing naughtier than a bad boy is a good girl...

Amara Maria Robles is a good girl. So good that she gave up her dreams of becoming a renowned pastry chef to help her parents with their struggling Mexican bakery. Yet her parents reject any changes she suggests, and refuse to sell her mouth-watering confections. Clearly being a good girl isn't paying off. So when her brother's sexy ex-best friend walks into the bakery, Amara's tempted to be very bad indeed...

After a scandal twelve years ago, resident bad boy Eric Valencia has returned to make things right with his family and friends. One glance at Amara and her wicked curves, however, and Eric finds himself thinking about how she’d feel beneath him—something he promised Amara's brother he would never think about, let alone do.

But this bad boy is in deep trouble...because Amara's determined to have her cake, and Eric, too.    



May 19 
Latina Book Club *Novella giveaway

May 20
Just Contemporary Romance * $10 Amazon GC giveaway

May 21

May 22

Caribbean Accent Reviews * Novella & $10 Amazon GC giveaway

May 26

May 30
Harlequin Junkie * Novella & $10 Amazon GC giveaway

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