Recently I had the opportunity to virtually meet Tina Donahue! She's an award-winning, bestselling novelist in erotic, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance and has a lot of books that I'm going to be trying to check out as soon as my schedule calms down! I asked her to do a guest post about how she came up with her idea for the series "Taming the Beast". Check it out below:
When I was a kid, I loved anything supernatural. Wow, I thought, if I had those powers, no way would math give me any trouble. Hey, school wouldn't be a problem—I’d just shrug it off and vaporize anyone who tried to make me go.
Ah, being a kid.
It never occurred to me that paranormal creatures have their own problems. Take Superman for example: Poor dude is toast around kryptonite and don’t me started on the problems he’d have these days with phone booths going the way of the dinosaur. I can see it now, him getting arrested for indecent exposure while he tries to change into his tights near a 7-11 pay phone (are those even available anymore?).
Vampires don’t have a great time of it either. Imagine missing out on days at the beach and everything that happens before dark. And what’s with the living forever? Not for me. No telling how screwed up the world will be in several thousand years.
When I started to think about the trouble paranormal creatures face in a mortal world, I considered how much fun it might be if they wanted to change themselves, a makeover if you will, so they could live around mortals – in the case of guys, date them.
With that in mind, my Taming the Beast series was born. Freeing the Beast is Book One (Book Two – Surrendering to the Beast will be out in October).
In "Freeing the Beast", Becca Salt is only half-witch, her dad’s mortal. Given that and the fact that Becca never really liked to study witchcraft, any more than she liked calculus, history, or other subjects in school, she’s not a real whiz at potions or spells. That hasn't stopped her from running her business From Crud to Stud, a makeover service in New Orleans for supernatural creatures who want to suppress their beast so they can date mortal babes.
Becca may be one helluva businesswoman, but when it comes to love, she’s fallen short. Eric changes everything for her. He’s a minor god, a descendant of Cupid, who comes to her service for a makeover because he wants to free his beast—to become the bad boy that women love, rather than the polite, preppy, romantic guy he is now.
What happens next is fun, flirty, filled with magic, supernatural creatures at their worst, and yes, steaming hot sex between Becca and Eric. These star-crossed lovers can’t seem to get love right, not even with magic, but they do have their HEA.
Their romance is playful, steamy, and so much fun. I’ve always loved writing romantic comedies with an erotic twist – this baby definitely fits the bill.
I’m an award-winning, bestselling novelist in erotic, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance for Samhain Publishing, Ellora’s Cave, Siren Publishing, Booktrope, and Kensington. Yay! Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, Romantic Times and numerous online sites have praised my work, and trust me, I’m forever grateful for that. I’ve had my books reach finals in the EPIC competition, one title was named Book of the Year at a review site, and others have won awards in RWA-sponsored contests. I’m actually featured in the 2012 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market. Talk about feeling like a freaking star. Before my writing career, I was the editor of an award–winning Midwestern newspaper and worked in Story Direction for a Hollywood production company. Outside of being an admitted and unrepentant chocoholic, I’ve flown a single-engine plane (scary stuff), rewired an old house using an electricity for dummies book, and have been known to moan like Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally whenever I’m eating anything Mexican or Italian. Yeah, I like to eat (burp).
You can check me out here – yes, I am everywhere!
- FB Fanpage: http://on.fb.me/1ChWdD7
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: http://bit.ly/15Xy6LI
- Blog: http://bit.ly/1yRB9k9
- Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1wFmIu6
- Twitter: http://bit.ly/1ziy4IU
- Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1Dl8DHy
- Triberr: http://bit.ly/1CE2ec7
- Pinterest: http://bit.ly/1yFLeMx
- Amazon author page: http://amzn.to/1ChWFkO
- My page at TRR: http://bit.ly/1vb7eEc
- EC Author Page: http://bit.ly/1Dh9wor
- Samhain Author Page: http://bit.ly/1Bvw6mL
- Sweet ‘n Sexy Divas: http://bit.ly/1ChWN3K
- Romance Books 4 US: http://bit.ly/1JPtfeS
- Book Escape (FB): http://on.fb.me/1HmfHtA
I’m offering one winner at this site her (or his) choice of one of my backlist ebooks from this list. Nineteen choices in all – contemporary, ménage, suspense, paranormal.
All you have to do is follow/like my Amazon Author’s Page: http://amzn.to/1ChWFkO
Let me know that you did by emailing me at: firstname.lastname@example.org providing the number of the like.
- Adored – RWA award-winning; EPIC 2011 Finalist; 4 Stars RT
- Deep, Dark, Delicious – EPIC 2011 Finalist; Holt Medallion Award of Merit
- Lush Velvet Nights – EPIC 2011 Finalist; Golden Nib Award
- In His Arms – SIX 5 Star Reviews; 4 Stars RT
- Sensual Stranger – 2010 Book of the Year (erotic); 4 Stars RT
- The Yearning – Top Ten Bestseller
- Take Me Away – #1 Pick, Miz Love Loves Books
- Unending Desire – Best Book Rating LASR
- SiNN – Nominated for Book of the Week LASR
- Sinfully Wicked – Magnificent – Romancing the Book
- Claiming Magique – Top Pick – NOR
- Illicit Desire – Four Stars Romantic Times
- Come Fill Me – Five Stars – Guilty Pleasures
- Losing Control - Four and a Half Stars - Sensual Reads
- Shameless Desire - Four and a Half Stars - The Jeep Diva
- Illicit Intent – Four and a Half Stars – Sensual Reads
- Deep Within Me – Four Stars – Romantic Times
- Seven Sensuous Days – Four Stars – Long & Short Reviews
- Stolen Desire – Five Hearts – Novel Broads
Thanks for the guest post and giveaway opportunity Tina!
Bonus: Excerpt from the Book:
Heat and humidity poured inside, along with the racket from the street party. Drunken voices mingled with throaty laughter, pounding drums and trumpets reaching then holding their highest notes. Becca’s pulse thumped in her ears, drowning out the other sounds.
The guy who’d come inside was something. At least six-three, he had the build of an athlete, lean and muscular with broad shoulders, narrow hips and powerful thighs. Without meaning to, Becca stepped closer, drinking him in. Classically handsome, he wore his hair preppy style, longer on the top, shorter on the sides. It was a warm chestnut brown streaked by the sun and slightly tousled, begging for a woman’s fingers to smooth it back.
Becca brought down her hand, suddenly realizing she’d lifted it.
His golden complexion spoke of days spent outdoors, possibly skinny-dipping in a pool, water streaming over his firm pecs and abs, being trapped in his nest of dark curls…his rock-hard cock jutting from it, inflexible as iron, sleek as a spear. Suppressing a shiver of delight, Becca took in his leather loafers, beige khakis and white shirt opened at the collar with the sleeves rolled up to mid-forearm.
Masculine yet civilized. Very nice.
Zoe, you did good. Aw, sweetie, more than good. She deserved part ownership in this place for having done such a fantastic job on him. This guy had been made over to the nth degree from…
Becca wasn’t certain what kind of demon he was, or his level in Hell, never having met him before the makeover. Maybe that’s why he’d taken so long to get here. He couldn’t pull himself away from the god he now saw in his mirror.
While Becca ogled him, he regarded the reception area’s feathery ferns and potted plants as though seeing them with different eyes. A mortal’s eyes. The room’s faux brick floor, coral walls and gas wall fixtures radiated warmth, an earthy, sensual feel in keeping with the area’s culture.
It was also decidedly romantic.
And the reason most of these guys signed up. They were having problems with babes and wanted a solution, even if it was painful.
Hissing noises came from behind a door on the right. On the left, a muffled groan sounded faintly sexual.
Could be that was why this guy was late. He’d already seduced a babe and had been reluctant to leave her.
Becca glanced at his fly, the thick ridge behind it. Some women had all the luck. She, on the other hand, had a business to run.
Reining in her desire, she joined him in the reception area. “Do you have any idea how late it is?”
He turned. His attention zipped from her flame-red hair, cut in a chin-length bob with bangs, to her dramatic makeup. Heavy black liner surrounded her blue eyes. Her maroon lipstick was just a shade lighter than black and quite a contrast to her pale skin.
He lifted his eyebrows slightly, then regarded the black silk top tied beneath her breasts, her silver navel jewelry, black harem pants, anklets, toe rings and high-heeled sandals.
Even at five-seven, and with the extra three inches the shoes gave her, Becca felt positively dainty next to him. Quite a feat considering she’d always been too tall and curvy. In school, they’d called her the f-word.
Well, fuck ’em, right? So she’d never be skinny or a beauty. Not like her mom. Unfortunately, Becca took after her dad. A great guy, but no hunk in the looks department.
“We can’t wait forever,” she said. “Let’s go.”
She headed down the hall. Hearing only her footfalls, Becca stopped and looked over.
He hadn’t taken one step in her direction. He was far too busy studying her ass. Intently. Appreciatively…if his crooked smile was any indication. How awesome was that?
Was it something Zoe had taught him?
“You coming?” Becca asked.
He actually blushed beneath his tan. What appeared to be carnal hunger blurred his expression as he regarded her. “Where?”
His voice was even deeper than the howlers that came here for treatment. Way huskier than Zoe’s when she got riled. Becca moved toward him again, drawn by his potent masculinity, until she forced herself to stop and pointed over her shoulder.
He approached with the grace of a well-behaved panther. Loose limbed and composed, not cocky or predatory. Shit. Zoe was a miracle worker.
“Sure,” he said.
Becca swallowed. His eyes were the color of honey with flecks of green. Given his laugh lines, he looked to be in his early thirties—if she was using mortal time—just a couple of years older than her.
Not that their ages mattered. Why should they? Once his photo shoot was over, he’d be gone. Back in bed with his babe.
“There.” She pointed to the side, trying not to drool over him.
He kept checking her out too and gave her another crooked grin. “There what?”
Damned if she knew. His adorable smile continued to tangle her thoughts. Becca lowered her head and took a deep breath. “Door on the right. Go in that room. Take off your clothes. I’ll get the photog—”
The rest of her words and all the spit in her mouth dried up as his fingers curled around her wrist, keeping her from moving away.
He murmured, “What?”
That voice. His touch. Her knees sagged. With great effort, Becca turned back to him.
He gave her a questioning look and waited.
Becca wanted to ruffle his long, dark lashes, kiss his silky eyebrows, then suck his lower lip into her mouth while she crawled all over him. “Briefs or boxers?”
He pulled back slightly, but didn’t let go of her wrist. “What?”
She cleared her throat. Her voice still jiggled and rasped. “What are you wearing? Briefs or boxers?”
He looked down as though to check. “Boxers.”
“The stretchy kind or the baggy ones?”
He let go of her wrist. “They’re not that baggy.”
Hmm. She’d hurt his feelings. A nice human touch Zoe must have taught him. Like having him stare at a female’s ass, rather than simply grabbing it, to make her feel sexy and desired. “I’m sure they’re not. Still, we prefer the snug ones.”
The kind that would hug his fleshy balls and caress his rigid cock. On wobbly legs, Becca went to the hall closet and pulled out a navy pair.
“Here.” She flung them at him.
They landed on his deliciously broad shoulder.
Becca backed away. “Strip down, then put those on. We can’t screw around any longer.”
“Sure about that?”