Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My last post...

of the year 2009! Is it just me or has the year just flown by?

We had a wonderful Christmas but boy am I glad it's over. The two kids and I celebrated the holiday at home. We had fun doing our already made up traditions plus making some new ones. The kids were at war over Santa. Daughter says Santa isn't real but son insists he is. Even though they are just 13 months apart in age, it seems like 13 years.

I recieved two gifts for Christmas this year. The first one came on Christmas Eve. A contract for my full length novel titled New Year's Resolution. Great time to get a contract for it, huh? It's with another publisher and the expected release date is spring 2010.

My other gift was something my daughter bought with her own money and meant the world to me even though it probably seems silly to everyone else. We were watching tv one night and a commercial came on for some really expensive chocolate. I said, "I'd love to try that." Daughter asked why I didn't buy any. "I said, "Because it costs too much. I could never spend that much on candy for myself." This happened about a month or so before Christmas. Anyway, my daughter bought me the chocolate. It was the first gift I had gotten from the kids that they had spent their own money on and my daughter had really listened to me that night. My kids are great!

We don't plan on anything crazy for New Year's Eve. We'll be having pizza and punch while watching the count down on tv. Daughter has stayed up with me for the past two years. Son doesn't make it yet but he says he will this time lol. We'll see.

Do you make New Year's resolution? I made two writing goals for the new year.

#1. Have two books released (check!).

#2. Coauthor a paranormal with critique partner.

So what are your resolutions and holiday plans?

Talk to you soon and cheers to the new year,

Wendy Ely

Monday, December 28, 2009

Happy Holidays to all!

Sorry, I'm so late posting today. I meant to get to it this morning before work, and then I overslept. Ooops. Anyway, here I am. :D

As some of you know, I've been having lots of computer troubles this year. It's been one thing after another. So, I broke down and bought myself a new computer for Christmas. I definitely needed it. My old computer gave it's all, but it just couldn't hold in there. Poor thing wasn't very old either. It died way before it's time. Unfortunately, when it died, so did a lot of my writing. :( I thought I had it backed up, but apparently it wasn't. When I went to open my files from my flash drive, they were the old versions. I must say, I was not very happy. I KNOW I saved them. Technology has not been my friend this year. Hopefully, in 2010, we will once again resume our happy relationship.

Well, at least now I have a new computer. That's a good thing. In some ways, I'm very happy with it. In others, I hate it. I cannot get used to this mouse. Is that what you call it on a laptop? Anyway, instead of two separate buttons, it has one long button. I know I'll eventually get used to it and it won't bother me at all, but for now, it's kinda crazy.

I had a pretty good Christmas. No fighting in the family, which is always a good thing. Everyone got along well. We played games with the kids, who aren't really kids anymore. Man, do I feel old. But, they all had a good time. I'm really hoping that New Year's will go well also.

So, how did your Christmas go? Was Santa good to you this year? Share your stories with me, I'd love to hear them!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Season’s Greetings!

May all the peace and joy of this holiday season remain with you always.


To my fellow bloggers here at Wicked Thorn and Roses, thank you so much for the wonderful support, guidance, and love. It is an honor to be a part of this blog.

I wish you guys all the best and all the good stuff we authors strive for.

To all of you wonderful readers and friends. Thank you so much for everything.

Take care and stay safe. :)

Tierney O’Malley


Sunday, December 20, 2009

6 Days 'Til Christmas, and my True Love Gave Me...


Well, I can't blame him. My present buying has not improved at all in the past week. I just asked him a few moments ago if he's purchased anything and his answer was no. So, neither of us will have anything to open that day...and you know what? I don't think it's bothering me all that much.

I wonder why?

I'm more bothered by the idea that I don't have anything for him more so than having something to open for myself. There is just something about finding someone the perfect gift and watching their little faces light up when they open it. I know many marvelous shoppers who seem able to start their holiday gift buying frenzy sometime in the middle of July or August. My oldest sister is one such creature. Me, I think I'v done that once. Once. And only withone gift for my hubby back in the Dark Ages when we were still engaged. It proved extremely hard to wait the four or five months with the present tucked deep in the back of my closet, to not give it to him in the meantime.

No, I'm definately someone who needs to shop closer to the big day, just so I don't collapse in a gift giving seizure and beg the person to open their presents early.

As it is...I wasn't ready for Christmas this year. It came up on me too quickly. Maybe I'll just write it off this year and do something big for Valentines. Oh, wait. I can't. I'm working that day.

Huh, sounds familiar.


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Rainbow Awards: The Pauper's Prize

My book, a homoerotic fable titled: "The Pauper's Prize" has been awarded second place in the Rainbow Awards (fantasy category)! *faint* I am stunned!

Thank you to Elisa Rolle for hosting the awards. Thank you to all the readers who voted for the book. Thank you to the Judges who shared reader opinion. I've never won anything in my life before and it's a great feeling to get recognition in this way, especially considering my confidence as a writer was at an all time low when I wrote that particular book. Getting recognition in this way is the best feeling, let me tell you!

Here is the link to buy a copy of The Pauper's Prize so you can see what all the fuss is about. Don't forget you get 30% off the price this month over at eXtasy in the month of December. So, pick up a great read and a bargain, too!

Monday, December 14, 2009

All I Want for Christmas…

You know, I haven’t made a Christmas wish list in a long, long time. Not since I was a kid and made my list for Santa. Well, I figured it was about time I did it again. Why not? You can’t get anything you want out of life if you don’t try, right? So, I might as well give it a shot. But, what do I want?

I’ve spent the majority of my adult life thinking about what other people want. I’ve rarely had the opportunity to think about what I might want. When I actually tried to sit down and think about it, it was really hard! Of course, the majority of my wishes have to do with my writing, so that makes it easier. If I had to come up with a list that was completely non-writing related, I don’t think I could do it.

So, without further ado, here is my list…
• Write a full length manuscript
• Get an agent
• Get a contract with a major NY publisher
• A new car
• Fix up my house
• Have enough money for my daughter’s college
• Have enough money to go to conference next year
• Get to go on a real vacation
• Be fit and healthy

Now, some of these are more like goals, I guess, but I still think of them as wishes. I know it’s going to take a lot of hard work to achieve some of them, but I’m just hoping it happens sooner rather than later, so that would be where the wish comes in.

So tell me, what is on your Christmas list this year?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

'Tis the Season

And that's about as far as I've gotten so far. I haven't had much time to do anything this year, but write my fingers to the bone, work at my night job, and nurse myself through some kind of stomach bug/dizzy spells that have compelled me to sleep 18 hours a day on my days off .

I'm all for postponing Christmas until...say...February sometime, when I'll have a bit of time to devote to shopping and wrapping and decking the halls.

I'm looking out my front windows and see nothing but a soggy wet mess where the ice storm we were supposed to get is rain. (Don't get me wrong, I prefer the rain.) But come on, man, this only happens on the nights I have to work. (Personally, I think it's a conspiracy against me perpetuated by the National Weather Service, but I digress.)

So, this year, with things being very tight financially with me and the hubster, we decided to do a joint gift (a region/code free DVD player) and a couple of box sets of hard to find dvd's to watch on it. When I asked the man today if he'd started ordering the gift, he said no. Hadn't even looked at it. Oh, no!!! Does that mean I might have to go out into the crowds during the busy shopping season and brave the sales and shoppers and children crying for candy? It's enough to give an agoraphobe like myself seizures.

All right, that's it. I'm going to bed. Wake me up on Ground Hog's Day.


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Review of E.J. Stevens' Book of Poetry

~I posted this review yesterday at Moonlight, Lace & Mayhem, but in an effort to give E.J. Stevens as much exposure as possible, I am resposting the review here today. Hope you all enjoy and I'd love for you all to share any of your own poetry! ~

I dabble with poetry on occasion. I wouldn’t say I’m good at it. As if writing in general isn’t challenging enough, I sometimes love the extra challenge that poetry creates. Or rather, the “rules” I place upon myself when writing poetry is challenging. I enjoy setting a standard of cadence and rhyming. And then I enjoy starting over with a new set of standards. For example, here are a few different poems I’ve written. (Warning! None of them are works of art!)



Through your mortality I live
Stealing carnal nourishment
Feasting upon the soul you give
Alive! Beyond earthly bounds

With life, you pulse
You tease with warm, soft skin
My need results
You are forever mine

I swell with your alluring scent
Mind exploding, chest heaving
Your offering is my intent
Senses reeling, I take you

With love, I give my immortal kiss
My bloody embrace
Transcends you with waves of tainted bliss
My arms caress death

Your life explodes around me
On memories and emotions I feast
Revealed for my eyes to see
To know you and love you intimately

His blood mixed with mine
In death, I awoke
Trapped for all of time
In immortality



It reached outward, feeding upon the night,
Reaper prowling for a dying soul.
No rest...until It gained Its goal.
The essence of life nourishing Its delight.

A dog howled a warning to Its prey.
It pulled the victim into Its white embrace.
My father, my father, I give thee succor and grace.
It smiled and became the friend that would betray.

© Gracen Miller ~ These poems may not be reproduced or used in whole or in part by any means existing without written permission from the author.


As you can see in each poem, the rhyming pattern deviates in both, but they both also share the same number of syllables in certain lines so that they flow or dance together easily—in my head anyway. LOL The pattern then repeats throughout those poems. Poetry can be as difficult or as simple as the author desires to make them. Basically, it comes down to the rules or lack of rules a poet places upon themselves when crafting poetry.

How many of you write poetry? If you’ve never tried, I challenge you to give it a try. Just don’t be too strict on yourself and have fun while writing them! And if you’ve written some, I encourage you to share them with us.

With poetry in mind, I recently had the pleasure of reading a book of poetry by E.J. Stevens. Her book of poems is entitled, From the Shadows. When reading poetry you have to read it with a different eye and thought process than when reading a work of fiction, such as a romance or thriller novel. When I write poetry, I often write it with the hopes that there can be more than one interpretation to it. It felt like Ms. Stevens’ wrote many of her poems with the same intentions.

From the Shadows is an easy read, but there’s depth to these poems, with a story to be told in each one. And each and every one of her poems was thought provoking. Sometimes the poems are morbid and dark. Sometimes they’re poignant reminders of loved ones we’ve lost, such as My Mother’s Garden. At other times, I saw dark, unhealthy romanticism. Your Kiss is a Riptide, for example. This poem in particular reminded me of the abusive relationship my best friend had with her husband. She wanted out of the relationship, but she kept getting caught up in his “riptide” until she was almost dead on the inside. Ms. Stevens may not have meant for me to interpret this particular poem in this way, but that was how the poem affected me. And often times—in my opinion at least—poetry is about feelings and emotions, and I easily felt some form of emotion with each of Ms. Stevens’ poems.

As I read several of her poems, I could hear them set to music. Their dark, haunting words reminding me of the late 1980’s dark and haunting song, Close My Eyes Forever by Ozzy Osborne and Lita Ford. I love that song, still love that song, and could easily hear many of her poems sung in my head by some heavy metal singers today. Maybe Shinedown, Five Finger Death Punch, Papa Roach or even Rammastein, would be able to turn her poetry into lyrics.

Some of her simplest lines are her most vivid. For instance:

Shadow Queen of the Sidhe

“Blackberry lips
Brimstone embers in her hair…”

Graveyard Whispers
“Resonates through their caskets
Rattling cloth and bone…”

Plague Rat
“Gasping wetly for breath
Prayers pass cracked lips
Hoping for the release of death...”

Wow! What powerful and vivid descriptions with simple words. I can visualize exactly what she’s written and each one of these showcased above is startling in my mind’s eye. Her poems are written in a myriad of different ways, so the cadence never gets old. And while I liked some poems better than others—of course that’s with any story ;-)—I still enjoyed the totality of her book of poetry and I’m glad Ms. Stevens allowed me the privilege of reading her work. For anyone that loves dark poetry, I think you’ll love this book of poetry written by E.J. Stevens as well.

Still undecided if E.J.’s poetry is right for you? Come back on Sunday to get a sneak peek of one of her poems from her upcoming release, Shadows of Myth and Legend, and a sample of one of her poems From the Shadows! It’s a treat you will not want to miss!

Disclosure pursuant to FTC Rules: This book was received complimentary of the publisher, author or publicist. In most cases at Moonlight, Lace & Mayhem, whoever reviews the book gets to keep the book unless another arrangement has been made between reviewer, publisher, author and/or publicist. Just because a publisher, author and/or publicist provides a free book for review does not guarantee a flattering review. All reviews are the opinions of the reviewer and are never based upon receiving a free copy of the author’s work.
~Moonlight, Lace & Mayhem~

Friday, December 11, 2009

Have you heard of Carrie Hinkell- Gill?

The first time I read Carrie’s post, I knew she wasn’t just an ordinary woman. She was one smart woman. I even began to think that she was one of those grammarian, academia, smart people I tried to avoid meeting at parties for fear that she’d ask me questions. Jeopardy hard questions. LOL

Anyway, she reviewed my book, Wicked Night Before Christmas. And let me tell you, my eyes bulged and nearly drooled on my laptop while reading her review. I could tell she didn’t just scanned the story. Man, she dissected my book, critiqued, and reviewed it. I LOVE IT. One thing about me, I love reading comments about my work. Don’t just tell me that you enjoyed reading my book. Tell me what you THINK about it. That was exactly what Carrie did. Here is the link to the review.


Another wonderful blog that I enjoyed visiting is Book Talk with J & J. Big time authors often visit the site. Nice to rub elbows with the experts. :D

Today, I am Book Talk’s guest. My interview is available there now and I hope you guys will find the time to check it out. I bragged about you all. I do it all the time. :) Here's the link to the interview:


Leave a comment and you might win a copy of my ebook.


Happy weekend!



Thursday, December 10, 2009

Only a Little Rant I promise ;-)

*Begin rant*

Okay, rant and rave time! LOL (I don't ever really rant and rave--just have things that annoy me and make me roll my eyes to the heavens or that I don't understand) This next peeve is one of those eye rollers for me big time!

The thing for me at the moment is characters in books/movies who can shape-shift/transform into something like a werewolf/dragon/whatever and when they change back are fully clothed! Okay, when they change their clothes rip off, do whatever it is they need to do, and low and behold, clothes are back on when they return to human form (I'm looking at you New Moon movie as a recent example) If a character loses his/her clothes, then why would they gain them back?--clothes don't magically appear!

ARGHH! If a character is naked, lets see him/her naked? Why cover them up in an obviously weak attempt to dilute the plot to perhaps please a more general audience? Double ARGHHH! So bad.

One movie lately that kept their character naked, was Dr. Manhatten in the Watchmen. Good stuff. He was naked for a reason and they stuck to that, even in the movie. Although, pity he was circumcised. Then again, the setting was supposed to be the 1950's so that would be historically accurate for the place and time the story was set in. Those who know me know I am an intactivist (google that if you're unsure--you may be surprised) Why mutilate boys and girls? I don't understand. (but this is a topic for another post. I'm getting side tracked...see...peeves really annoy! *giggle*)

Another example of inacturacy that peeves me off is the opposite to what I have just said. If characters are naked, make sure clothing doesn't suddenly appear. I was reading a well known author and a popular book the other week and in it a young couple were getting hot and heavy in the forest. They take each other's clothes off, get all steamy--the scene is great.

Then a couple of pages after that, the author says that 'she pulled his cock out of his pants' or words to that effect! Say what? Unless they were making love near a farm and a rooster wandered into his trousers that had been thrown down in a fit of passion beside them, then really the poor guy is suffering from detachable penis. And we all know how bad that can be. Finding one's penis can be a real chore--they have a mind of their own, those things!


So if a character is naked, keep him/her that way until you clothe them. If they transform, make sure they come back as a human in a logical way. And if characters are getting naked, don't add clothes without good cause. That's all.

*Rant over*

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A little of this and lots of that!

So, as I posted last week, Jesse's Brother had been nominated for Book of the Month by Dark Diva Reviews. I'm super delighted to announce that Jesse's Brother WON! Can you believe it? I'm still a bit in shock over it.

My daughter had her first babysitting job last week and decided to treat me to New Moon over the weekend. For those that know me well would be surprised by this since I'm not a big fan of paranormal and I haven't read the books. The movie was good and Bella didn't irritate me as much as she did in Twilight (we own this on dvd). Later that night my daughter begged me to read the series. Fine (insert groan sound effect) because I don't like it that much. I finished up the two books I had been reading and started on New Moon. I'm glad to say it's not bad and there's a lot of needed info in there.... like the little bit about WHY Bella didn't want to celebrate her birthday which isn't explained in the movie and seems weird.

So~ I'm curious to hear about what you're reading now!

Talk to you soon,

Wendy Ely

Monday, December 7, 2009

New Diva Releases!

Check out some of the new releases of my Diva Friends!

"The Scroll Thief: a Tale of Ithian" by R. F. Long

Love is the wiliest thief of all.

A Tale of Ithian

Malachy and his sister rely on his talents as a thief to survive the dangerous streets of Klathport, former capital of the once-great kingdom of Ithian. Stealing a few papers should have been a simple job. Instead, it nearly costs their lives and throws them into an improbable alliance with a shape-shifting official, a desert tribeswoman, and a healer of enchanting beauty.

Cerys is far more than a simple healer—and the roots of her mission go deeper into the past than anyone can know. She needs Malachy’s skills to recover a stolen scroll, one that can be used to rewrite history and, in the wrong hands, release the dark powers of the Demon Realm.

Her mission was supposed to atone for a dreadful, long-ago act. Instead, it unleashes a chain of events which sees them pursued through city and desert by the fearsome Dune Witch and a killer known only as His Lordship. Romance, tragedy, and adventure blend in a tale of a magical land on the brink of war, and five unlikely allies who, by putting their lives—and their hearts—on the line, have the opportunity to finally set things right.

But at a terrible cost.

Warning: Contains scenes of graphic violence and torture, captivating magic and beauty, two dashing heroes, three gutsy heroines, several love stories and a heartbreaking sacrifice.

Read an excerpt HERE.


8 Ways Onto The Naughty List

8 Ways Onto The Naughty List
Rita Sawyer
ISBN Number: 978-1-897560-23-5
Genre: Holiday Romance
Length: Novella
Price: $2.99


Patsy has lusted after her boss for years, but lately it's getting harder to keep that desire hidden. She decides to quit before she makes a fool of herself. Her boss Dexter refuses to accept her resignation letting her out of her contract. So she sets out to get fired without actually screwing up her job, which means some big changes around the office.

Dexter finally admits he can't ignore the way he feels about Patsy anymore. He calls her into his office intending to ask her out to dinner and hopefully bring their relationship onto a more personal level. Before he can say anything she quits. He refuses to let her out of her contract. This gives him twelve weeks to get her to change her mind, so when she starts changing things around the office he gives it a chance hoping to show her another side of him.

Available Now at Blade Publishing
and ARe


"The Christmas She Rules"
Control is her kink…and she’s losing it.

It’s another gloomy Christmas for Pamela Dane. Not only is it the anniversary of a dark period in her life, but all her friends had the nerve to hook up. It’s not easy for a female Domme to find a playmate. Maybe The Cage in San Francisco will be the perfect place to escape—and find a willing man to chase away the memories.

Christian Nolan is at the BDSM club for the hell of it. Yet the minute Mistress Dane takes control of him, she not only stuns him with her talent, he stuns himself with his willingness to surrender. Her offer to meet him there for another night is intriguing—and frightening.

Pamela’s session with Chris shakes her to the core, resurrecting memories she’s afraid to face. But Chris isn’t willing to let her past haunt her…even if it leaves his heart in tatters.

Warning: Hot, strong man on his knees, which will bring you to yours. Strap-on action, anal play, lots of leather and tons of tension. Alpha male who likes to do whatever the right woman tells him to do, including another woman.

Want a taste? Read an excerpt HERE.

Saturday, December 5, 2009


With Thanksgiving behind us and Christmas fast approaching, I’m constantly thinking of food. What to make, if I have the necessary ingredients, or making a grocery list for the items I need. My mother is even calling and asking questions about the upcoming Christmas meal.


I’m thinking…ham or turkey? Or both? Pecan pie or Red Velvet Cake? Or both? Dear God, how does one pick between those two? *licks lips in anticipation* Dressing, peas, Mayonnaise Biscuits and Chicken Corn Chowder are Christmas meal staples, so I know I have to purchase the necessary ingredients for those items.

So, with food on the brain thanks to Thanksgiving, and with Nicola Cornick sharing her Husband’s Macadamian Nut Cookies yesterday at Moonlight, Lace & Mayhem (go here to read), I thought it’d be fun to share some recipes with one another and maybe we’ll each find something new to put on the Christmas table this year. But it doesn’t have to be a Christmas food item. I’d still love to hear your favorite food.

So, provided it doesn’t violate trade secrets, share, share, share your favorite recipes! ;-)

I’ll share several of my favorite recipes with you, all of them easy, because with my boys’ busy schedule, I need fast and easy.

Mayonnaise Biscuits
1 cup self-rising flower
4 teaspoons of mayonnaise
1 cup of milk

Mix all ingredients together and pour batter into muffin pan. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20-30 minutes or until golden on top. Voila! You have the easiest biscuits ever created! This is my husband’s grandmother’s recipe and everyone I’ve ever cooked these for love them. Most of the time when I ask what I can bring to a gathering, “Mayonnaise Biscuits” is what comes out of everyone’s mouth. LOL

A way to give them a little pizzazz is to add some shredded cheese into the batter and bake as above. Yummy!


Chicken Corn Chowder
2 chicken breasts
4 cups of milk
1 can of Cream of Potato soup (if you want more potatoes, then add a 2nd can)
2 cups of shredded cheese
2 cans of Mexican Corn (1 can works just as well if you’re not a huge fan of corn)

Boil the chicken until done, then shred it. Combine all ingredients in a large boiler and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently or the milk will scorch. Once the cheese is melted, it is ready to serve and eat! Chicken Corn Chowder is great with Mayonnaise Biscuits too.

And every year we bake Peanut Butter Cookies especially for Santa Claus.

Peanut Butter Cookies
1 cup of peanut butter (your choice of creamy or crunchy)
1 cup of sugar
1 egg

Spray a cookie sheet with a non-stick spray. Mix all ingredients, form into balls, place on cookie sheet and use a fork to flatten them. Bake at 350 degrees until toothpick comes away clean.


I hope you all enjoy these recipes as much as we do here in our home. Now, your turn…The Moonlighters want to know your favorite recipes.

WARNING: If you don't share, we'll sic one of Santa's elves on you...

All photos taken from Photobucket and no copyright infringement is intended.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Wow! The world is right side up again…kinda

I didn’t post last week. Sorry. I tried working on my blog last night, but had to stop because everything around me started shifting again. :) Why, you asked. I’ve been having “dizzy spells” or Vertigo. Was taken to the ER two times. The third time I had the spell, it wasn’t as bad but still incapacitated me. I’ve been homebound, sitting around the house afraid that my world would spin again. Hate the feeling.

Anyway, enough about my sorry state. : )


My book Wicked Proposal and Wendy Ely’s Jesse’s Brother both received awesome recommended reviews. So we both made it to Dark Diva Review’s Book of the Month Reader’s Poll.

Two Wicked Thorn and Roses members in one poll—whohoo! Good luck, Wendy. :)

If you have the time, please visit Dark Diva Reviews or

I’m not the popular one there.


WickedNightBeforeChristmasweb Wicked Night Before Christmas is out. It is available at eXtasy Books now and Amazon (Kindle) next week.


Dark Diva Reviews and My Overstuffed Bookshelf gave it great reviews.


Because of the holiday season, I decided to run a contest. The first TEN to buy a copy of Wicked Night Before Christmas will receive a free copy of well-received and well-reviewed My PleasureMYPLEASURE .


For more details, visit my website at


Please spread the word. Every little shout helps.


For my first book, I tried everything promo it. Joined yahoo groups and posted the book’s info practically everywhere I could. The book did okay, but not as good as Wicked Proposal. I realized, readers would grab a copy based on your book cover, title, cost (perhaps), but most of all blurb. I’m still working on the latter. :)

Writing is a learning process and a writer is forever learning.


eXtasy Books hired a new cover artist. Angie is so awesome. Here is the cover for my next book, Wicked Persuasion.WickedPersuasion5.25-72dpi She inspired me to finish Wicked Flame. I’m working on it while my world is not spinning. :)


My daughter asked me, “What’s up with the wicked titles, Mom?”


Perhaps, I should blog about the reasons behind my titles. :0




Wicked Persuasion available

January 15, 2009

This is it for today, guys. Wish you all a happy weekend. Keep writing and let’s rock this world! (right side up or not. :) )



Romance Author

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Smell of Love

Ever passed someone in the street and thought, gee, they smell nice? Well, research has found that smell plays a big part in how we perceive someone, whether or not we are attracted to someone and most importantly, whether or not we stay with someone when we do form a relationship with them.

Remember that famous quote by Ms. Monroe: "All I wear to bed is Channel no. 5"? Well, surprise, surprise that particular perfume is the worlds best seller. Thing is, on a lot of women, Channel No. 5 smells like toilet spray or at worst insecticide. Why? Well, it's all about how perfumes/deodorants/after shave/body sprays react with our own natural body smell. We all have our own smell first and foremost.

People who are considered the most attractive are the ones who have discovered that magic combination. What artificial perfume/spray to use to best highlight their own natural smell. And it also seems that we stay with people who have the most desirable natural smell to us, without the use of artificial sprays.

So...if you've been with your partner a long time, chances are you like their smell.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Themes and family~ A tie that binds!

My post is not about me getting nominated but I'd like to announce Tierney's novel along with mine (Jesse's Brother) have been chosen to compete for Book of the Month over at Dark Diva Reviews. Have some time? Stop on over and vote!

Thanks for the being patient. Now on to the blog post:

I recently took a workshop given by a wonderful author. She mentioned something (I don't remember her exact words) about every writer having a theme in their books. She asked if we knew what our 'theme' was. My critique partner, Buffy Christopher and I were talking about this the other day because she figured out that her books all focus on the heroine trying to save herself. Every book of mine has had the characters dealing with family issues of some type. In Jesse's Brother, Samantha is home to deal with issues she has with her mother and adores her father. In Confessions, Chelsea has to face her dysfunctional family after her disappearance so many years ago had convinced them that she'd been abducted. My release for 2010 has a heroine who a normal family but doesn't desire to have a connection with them.

If you know me on a more personal level, you probably know I have a lot of family issues and I admire people who have healthy relationships with their family members. It's the holiday season and it has gotten me thinking about families and my book theme. For awhile I believed the theme came up from the issues I have and have tried varying up a little since who wants to read family drama all of the time, right? So I went further back in my life to see if it held in relevance.

My mom had been a single parent and ran a foster home for most of my childhood. I often felt alone and on the sidelines. I started reading V.C Andrews at a young age so I believe my attraction to family issues goes way back then what my family is like today.

What about you? If you are writer, do you notice a theme in your books? For the readers, do you tend to gravitate toward a certain theme? How do these mirror your life?

Can't wait to hear your thoughts on this!

Wendy Ely

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Chemistry of Love

I was recently discussing the chemistry of love with a writer friend of mine, then later talked about it to my husband who is out of town on business. I was whining to him on the phone about how much I miss him. I was wondering how after seven years together, he can still make my heart race, my breath catch with one look. Don't even ask what his touch does. Why is it that I can't stay mad at him for very long? After seven years and three kids and believe me, we've had our rough times just like any couple but still, our bond is so strong. Unbreakable. I wanted to know why. I've been married before and never felt as I do now. I was only friends with my ex but I thought we were in love. Now I know. And wow...what a DIFFERENCE. Read on to learn what the experts have to say.

(The following text was copied from Wikkipedia with sources sited at courtesy of Photo Bucket except for my personal photo.)

Biological models of sex tend to view love as a mammalian drive, much like hunger or thirst. Helen Fisher, a leading expert in the topic of love, divides the experience of love into three partly overlapping stages: lust, attraction, and attachment. Lust exposes people to others; romantic attraction encourages people to focus their energy on mating; and attachment involves tolerating the spouse (or indeed the child) long enough to rear a child into infancy.

Lust is the initial passionate sexual desire that promotes mating, and involves the increased release of chemicals such as testosterone and estrogen. These effects rarely last more than a few weeks or months. Attraction is the more individualized and romantic desire for a specific candidate for mating, which develops out of lust as commitment to an individual mate forms. Recent studies in neuroscience have indicated that as people fall in love, the brain consistently releases a certain set of chemicals, including pheromones, dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin, which act in a manner similar to amphetamines, stimulating the brain's pleasure center and leading to side effects such as increased heart rate, loss of appetite and sleep, and an intense feeling of excitement. Research has indicated that this stage generally lasts from one and a half to three years.

Since the lust and attraction stages are both considered temporary, a third stage is needed to account for long-term relationships. Attachment is the bonding that promotes relationships lasting for many years and even decades. Attachment is generally based on commitments such as marriage and children, or on mutual friendship based on things like shared interests. It has been linked to higher levels of the chemicals oxytocin and vasopressin to a greater degree than short-term relationships have.

Enzo Emanuele and coworkers reported the protein molecule known as the nerve growth factor (NGF) has high levels when people first fall in love, but these return to previous levels after one year.

Psychology depicts love as a cognitive and social phenomenon. Psychologist Robert Sternberg formulated a triangular theory of love and argued that love has three different components: intimacy, commitment, and passion. Intimacy is a form in which two people share confidences and various details of their personal lives, and is usually shown in friendships and romantic love affairs. Commitment, on the other hand, is the expectation that the relationship is permanent. The last and most common form of love is sexual attraction and passion. Passionate love is shown in infatuation as well as romantic love. All forms of love are viewed as varying combinations of these three components. American psychologist Zick Rubin seeks to define love by psychometrics. His work states that three factors constitute love: attachment, caring, and intimacy.

Following developments in electrical theories such as Coulomb's law, which showed that positive and negative charges attract, analogs in human life were developed, such as "opposites attract." Over the last century, research on the nature of human mating has generally found this not to be true when it comes to character and personality—people tend to like people similar to themselves. However, in a few unusual and specific domains, such as immune systems, it seems that humans prefer others who are unlike themselves (e.g., with an orthogonal immune system), since this will lead to a baby that has the best of both worlds. In recent years, various human bonding theories have been developed, described in terms of attachments, ties, bonds, and affinities.

Some Western authorities disaggregate into two main components, the altruistic and the narcissistic. This view is represented in the works of Scott Peck, whose work in the field of applied psychology explored the definitions of love and evil. Peck maintains that love is a combination of the "concern for the spiritual growth of another," and simple narcissism. In combination, love is an activity, not simply a feeling.

Companionate love or Passionate Love?
Biological models of love tend to see it as a mammalian drive, similar to hunger or thirst. Psychology sees love as more of a social and cultural phenomenon. There are probably elements of truth in both views. Certainly love is influenced by hormones (such as oxytocin), neurotrophins (such as NGF), and pheromones, and how people think and behave in love is influenced by their conceptions of love. The conventional view in biology is that there are two major drives in love: sexual attraction and attachment. Attachment between adults is presumed to work on the same principles that lead an infant to become attached to its mother. The traditional psychological view sees love as being a combination of companionate love and passionate love. Passionate love is intense longing, and is often accompanied by physiological arousal (shortness of breath, rapid heart rate); companionate love is affection and a feeling of intimacy not accompanied by physiological arousal.

Studies have shown that brain scans of those infatuated by love display a resemblance to those with a mental illness. Love creates activity in the same area of the brain where hunger, thirst, and drug cravings create activity. New love, therefore, could possibly be more physical than emotional. Over time, this reaction to love mellows, and different areas of the brain are activated, primarily ones involving long-term commitments.

What Alisha Gets From All This
After reading all this I can see that my husband and I have an intricate combination of companionate and passionate love. I suspect our special blend of chemicals, emotions and time together has formed an unbreakable bond. I agree with everything I read in the above theories. If love produces effects similar to certain drugs, no wonder we act the fools when we first fall in love. Good Lord, when I first met my husband, I would leave my secretary job at lunch and drive thirty minutes to his work just so I could spend ten minutes kissing him, then speed like a maniac to get back to work. And then I'd spend the rest of the day fantasizing about the feel of his lips, his hands on my hips, the way he swaggered up to me and whistled when he saw me...his tool belt, his hard hat...I could go on and on. Get this all you wicked bloggers...he lived next door to me for two years before we spoke. And when we was all over. Thank God his car broke down. He needed me to drive him to an auto parts store. I still love Autozone to this day. He brought me a bottle of wine to thank me a week later and asked me out on a date for the next weekend. Here's what he said. "So how long do I get you? For one night out or all weekend?" He wanted to spend days with me? This had never happened. I was in shock. SHOCK! It was the best weekend of my life. Six weeks later, he took me to our favorite spot at a nearby creek. He bent down on one knee and held a little velvet box out. I never thought I'd find true love but I did. What comforts me most is that we can weather any storm. Love is just the coolest thing ever.

Have a Love Filled Week!

P.S. Nocturnally Vexed releases in print tomorrow, December 2nd! Go to By purchasing a copy you will be helping to fight artist poverty!
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