It's a bit rainy here today, but the birds singing and the fresh scent of rain, is a pleasant reminder that spring is not too far away! I love to start my morning's sitting on my porch in my big ol' rocking chair, soaking in the peace and quiet of a small town, before things begin to stir for the day. It's an inviting place for having chats.Today, I welcome Beth (aka Emma) and Kaki to the porch for a visit. Won't you join us? Grab your fav morning beverage, find yourself a comfy spot, on the porch swing, and get to know these talented authors and their delightful work!
First up is the effervescent and gifted, Beth Williamson, who also writes as Emma Lang!
Beth (aka Emma Lang), is an award-winning, bestselling author of both historical and contemporary romances. Her books range from sensual to scorching hot. She is a Career Achievement Award Nominee in Erotic Romance by Romantic Times Magazine, in both 2009 and 2010.
Beth has always been a dreamer, never able to escape her imagination. It led her to the craft of writing romance novels. She’s passionate about purple, books, and her family. She has a weakness for shoes and purses, as well as bookstores. Her path in life has taken several right turns, but she’s been with the man of her dreams for more than 20 years.
Beth works full-time and writes romance novels evening, weekends, early mornings and whenever there is a break in the madness. She is compassionate, funny, a bit reserved at times, tenacious and a little quirky. Her cowboys and western romances speak of a bygone era, bringing her readers to an age where men were honest, hard and packing heat. For a change of pace, she also dives into some smokin’ hot contemporaries, bringing you heat, romance and snappy dialogue. Life might be chaotic, as life usually is, but Beth always keeps a smile on her face, a song in her heart, and a cowboy on her mind.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THIS STORY?
I find inspiration every day and in many places, words and faces. Caleb’s story is the third in the Circle Eight series. He was an impatient young man, eager to take on the world in the first two books. I knew he would take a long journey and in the end, find where he belonged.
Every young man has to find their own path and Caleb is no exception. He had always lived in the shadow of his big brother and his murdered father. I knew there was a good man beneath the arrogant exterior but it took a strong woman, Aurora, to ferret him out. She was inspired, as all my heroines are, by strong women in my life. As a lady blacksmith, I gave her a profession that required her to be tougher than most. She swings a hammer and pokes a hole in the big, bad wall Caleb had erected around his heart.
Here's a little inspiration Beth had for her story!
Her eyes were closed and he thought perhaps she’d passed out. However, as soon as he knelt beside her, her eyes flew open. They were glassy with pain and were an even more remarkable shade of amber up close. Flecks of a darker shade swirled in the depths.
“Did you check the fire?”
“Shut up about the fire, Rory. I’m going to pick you up and it’s going to hurt like hell.” He slid his arms beneath her knees and neck. “Are you ready?”
“No but that doesn’t matter. You sure you can pick me up? I ain’t a lightweight.” She appeared to be serious.
“You are a ridiculous female. Shut up about everything now.” He scooped her up fast so she didn’t have time to spout anymore nonsense.
She groaned and made a funny little sound like a kitten yawning. He got to his feet with the now unconscious woman in his arms. He had to get her to the Garza hacienda but he had no idea how to get there, only that it was ten miles north.
Shirtless, he walked over to Justice with the unconscious, bleeding woman in his arms. It wasn’t the first wound he’d seen but it bothered the hell out of him. Perhaps because she was a woman.
He didn’t have time to be soft. The woman truly needed a doctor and he had to move. Justice was well trained, standing by patiently, no matter the coppery smell of blood. Although he didn’t want to do it, he had to set her belly down on the horse. He vaulted into the saddle and then picked her up, rolling her over until she lay across his lap.
Her head lolled as he started off. He could only head north and hope to find the hacienda with the doctor. If he didn’t, he’d have a dead woman in his arms within twelve hours. The blood hadn’t soaked through the shirt but she was pale as hell. That might have been caused by the fall or the loss of blood. He didn’t know which and it frustrated the hell out of him.
There was a trail of sorts through the tall grass. It appeared wagons rolled through pretty regular. He followed the well-worn path at a trot. He really wanted to gallop but was afraid the jarring of the horse might cause more damage than the additional time to get where he was going. She was pretty torn up from the branch and more injuries were the last thing she needed.
“You need to wake up Rory. I don’t know where the hell I’m going.” He jiggled her a little and her hat fell off but she didn’t respond. No doubt when she woke up she’d be annoyed he lost the ugly thing. He wasn’t about to stop for it.
Without the leather cap, her appearance softened. She looked more like a female, with soft brown hair the color of a fawn’s pelt. Too bad it was cut short. Women should have long hair. It looked nicer. He would be sure to keep that opinion to himself or she might throw one of her hammers at him.
“You finished ogling me?” Her words were slurred but she was awake.
“Nope. It’s the first time you haven’t been talking at me. Good Lord, woman, but you could talk the bark off a tree.” He looked down into her eyes. “I hope I’m going the right direction but you passed out before you could give me details on how to find the Garza ranch.”
She tried to sit up and gasped. “Shit.”
“That’s another thing. You sure as hell cuss a lot for a female.”
“Oh why don’t you shut up, Ranger. Hell, man, I can’t imagine the outlaws you chase are on their Sunday best behavior.”
She had a point yet he didn’t concede it. If she was mad, she wouldn’t pass out again.
“I found a trail back yonder, maybe fifty yards from that big tree in your yard. I’ve been following it and hope like hell it’s the right direction.” He didn’t see anything that told him there was a big hacienda nearby.
“It’s the right way. Stay on the trail until you hit the creek, then follow it north about a mile. There’s a bridge across that leads into the ranch. There will be men at the bridge with guns. Don’t shoot them. Mr. Garza protects his property.” Her face relaxed and she snuggled into his chest. “You have nice skin.”
“Jesus.” He regretted not putting on another shirt. The woman was out of her mind with pain and that made her spout nonsense. “I won’t shoot anybody unless they shoot at me.”
“That’s a good policy.” She put one blood-crusted hand on his arm. “Can I call you Caleb? It’s such a nice name.”
He choked on his own spit. “You are really going to regret everything you just said. Probably want to throw yourself in the forge to purge it from your memory.”
She giggled, startling him. “Your lashes are ridiculously long, did you know that? Do you feel a breeze when you blink?”
He shifted her in his arms, wondering if it were possible another woman had taken her place in the tree. Where was the tough Aurora Foster who had kicked his ass a few hours ago? The silly girl who had taken her place put him completely off balance. He knew what to do with a stubborn woman, but a flirty one? He had no clue.
“Don’t make me tell you to shut up again. Stop talking now. You need to save your strength.”
She stuck out her tongue. He shook his head and kept quiet. The blood loss or the knock on the head from falling out of the tree made her foolish. Either way, she would regret what she said if she remembered it. He regretted it already and it wasn’t coming out of his mouth.
The easy assignment to push off a squatter had turned into a strange battle with an unusual woman and now a life-threatening situation. A ranger was prepared for anything, but this went beyond any of that. For God’s sake, she was flirting with him. He had no idea how to respond to it. She was the least feminine woman he’d ever met.
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LEARN MORE ABOUT BETH AND HER BOOKS AT http://www.bethwilliamson.com/
LEAVE A QUESTION OR COMMENT FOR BETH (OR EMMA) TODAY AND BE ENTERED TO WIN AN E-BOOK OR PRINT COPY OF CALEB!!
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~We also have Kaki Warner here to day, have a seat my friend, and tell us about yourself and your book!
In between her years as a mother, teacher, commercial artist, reluctant collection agent and surly secretary, Kaki fooled around with writing. Finally, after twenty-five years of procrastination, she sent her first manuscript out into world. Now, five years later, she’s a RITA winner and three-time finalist, has an e-novella and six historical westerns in print, and is busily working on her third trilogy. Her next book, BEHIND HIS BLUE EYES, a Heroes of Heartbreak Creek Novel, will be out August 6th. Then in January, she’s joining Jodie Thomas, Jo Goodman, and Alison Kent in a western anthology, BOOTS UNDER HER BED. But here’s the thing: none of that fabulousness happened until the year she went on Social Security. So, take heart, all you aspiring authors out there. It’s never too late, and you’re never too old. If you have a dream…go for it.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE COLORADO DAWN?For one thing, I wanted to create a hero who could rise above a disability with which I’m all too familiar: Dyslexia. And I also wanted to center the story around two of my favorite things: the American West, and a Scotsman. I’m a big fan of throwing my characters into unfamiliar surroundings or situations, then watching to see how they react. In my first book, PIECES OF SKY, I tossed a proper (and pregnant) Englishwoman into an all-male household on a New Mexico ranch. In COLORADO DAWN, I dropped a career cavalry officer into a dying Colorado mining town, where no one cared that he had fought in India and the Crimea, or that he was a Scottish Viscount, or that he was accustomed to getting his own way. They just didn’t want him taking their friend (and his runaway wife) back to Scotland.
EXCERPT:I’ve missed you, Maddie, so I have.” His smile faded into something raw and unfamiliar to her. “Dinna run from me again, lass. I couldna bear it.”
Tears pressed behind her eyes. Biding time until they passed, she traced a fingertip over his lips. “I didn’t run, Ash. I drifted away. And you let me.”
“I ken I was wrong. But I’ll not be doing that again. I swear it.”
In that unguarded moment, she glimpsed the brash, handsome young cavalry officer who had captured her heart six years ago. Who held it captive still.
Yet nothing had changed.
No matter the fine words, he would leave her again. He couldn’t help it. Duty would call, and honor would not allow him to disobey, and she would be left bleeding in his wake, just as had happened before. The thought of it was an unseen weight that pressed against her heart until the pain of it stole her breath away.
Oblivious, he sighed and closed his eyes. “You make me daft, lass, so you do. But I’m no’ complaining.”
Oh Maddie. You foolish, foolish woman.
Emotion clogged her throat. Why had she opened herself up to the same heartache that had nearly destroyed her once already? Had she learned nothing?
“Ash, what have we done?” To ourselves. To each other.
He opened his eyes and looked at her. They were the cool green of tarnished copper, or the earliest spring grass, or a high mountain lake fed by icy peaks. Changeable. Mysterious. Compelling.
“Forgotten already, love? Must I show you again?” He said it lightly, but she heard the tension in his voice, felt it in his arms when he pulled her on top of him. They stared into each other’s eyes—skin to skin, heart over heart—yet separated by that unbridgeable gap between duty and desire.
“Puir lass.” Reaching up, he cupped her head in his big hands, his fingers so long his thumbs reached to her temples. “I ken you’re confused, love. As am I. But this I know, Maddie Wallace. We belong together. Apart, we’re less than we were meant to be. But together, we can be more than either of us dreamed.”
“In Scotland?” She tried to keep her voice from wobbling but failed. “I don’t need a title, Ash. I need my work.”
“You need me.” He said it with fierce certainty, his eyes hiding nothing from her. “You need me.” He kissed her lips, then her closed lids, blotting away the tears she could no longer hold back. “And I need you.” Brushing his lips across her cheekbone, he whispered into her ear, “Ride me and I’ll prove it.”
For more information and excerpts of her books, please visit her website at www.kakiwarner.com
Leave a question or comment for Kaki to be entered to win 3 books in her western series!!
My thanks to these ladies for stopping in to visit, join us tomorrow when we talk to Holly Bush, Carolyn Brown, and Sabine Starr~
Make it a good one y'all!