Thursday, July 30, 2009

Spice does it again!

Certainly there is no lack of inspiration in the manor this week! The Spice cover art gods have once again shown their unbelievable ability to produce a gorgeous cover worthy of framing.

Some of you may recall that the marketing team decided to go back to the original title, "the MASTER and the MUSES" making this author very happy with that alone... and then this came yesterday and I fell in love again.

Featured is my wickedly handsome hero-icon-rebel-unabashed romantic- artist, Thomas Rodin, whose description reads best from the back cover. (Yes, you can click on the cover to read it in a larger frame)


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

And the winner is....

The randomly selected winner (I use an online random number generator, BTW) of the signed book from Kit Donner is.....comment #2, JENNIFER.

Congrats, Jennifer! Send me an email to with your full name and snail mail addy, and we'll get that prize sent out ASAP.

Thanks so much to Kit for joining us, and to everyone else who participated!

Welcome Kit Donner to the Manor!

Everyone, please welcome debut author Kit Donner to the LIT Manor--Kit's delectable debut historical THE NOTORIOUS BRIDEGROOM hits shelves...well, any day now! In honor of our LIT tradition we call "Wicked Wednesday", Kit is musing about one of our favorite topics: yummy heroes! As always, one lucky commenter will be chosen at random to win a signed book. Kit, take it away....

What Makes a Hero Sexy?

I can guess what immediately comes to mind if I ask that question to any female, particularly anyone who reads romances. We’ll start with the soulful gray eyes, or the longish dark hair, strong jaw, and continue on down to the bulging biceps, the 6-pack abs, tight buttocks in either jeans or breeches, and the rest- well, you can fill in the blanks.

But I ask you to look beyond our hero’s physical attributes for only a moment and consider comedian Steve Harvey’s words about the role a man (insert ‘hero’) fills in a woman’s life: To profess; to provide; and to protect. Although it may harken back to caveman roots, we still want our guy to tell us he loves us; provide for us and our family; and to protect us. (I’ve chosen not to address female equality or women who don’t need a man for this role in this blog.)

This description of a man’s role is what makes a hero sexy. I can think of three examples that come to mind that may help to illustrate my point. The first is from a scene from the TV show, “Taxi,” that has stayed with me for many years. The gist of the episode that I remember is Elaine’s old boyfriend/ex was coming to town and bringing his new girlfriend/wife to meet Elaine and they were to have dinner. Elaine wants to show her ex that she has someone in her life too, only she doesn’t. Her co-worker, Alex, offers to pretend to be her significant other, for show purposes, so she won’t feel like a big-time loser.

The interesting thing that happens while they are having dinner at the restaurant is how Alex treats Elaine- lovingly. He shows that he cherishes her, cares about her needs, and how much he loves her. Of course, it was all acting, but he started to convince Elaine he really meant all the things he said and did. The two characters don’t wind up together, but as I was watching this show, I began to think how sexy Alex (Judd Hirsch) was. While most people would agree that Judd Hirsch wouldn’t be the first name you think of as sexy, in my eyes, he became a sexy hero to Elaine and to me.

The other example is from the movie, “Cocoon.” There are movies that you’ve seen where you can’t recall specific scenes but something is forever implanted in your brain. For this movie, it was sexy Brian Dennehy. Yes, that Brian Dennehy, who hasn’t been seen much lately. What I remember is his kindness and his sexy low voice. After all these years, I wanted to love him for the hero he was, doing something good for mankind, helping those aliens get back home. (My memory is hazy but it went something like that.)

Lastly, I recently watched a rerun of “Frasier,” where Niles goes through all kinds of machinations to get Daphne’s parents back together, which doesn’t work. She asks him why he has done all this, and he simply tells her because he loves her, he would do anything to make her happy. (My lower lip quivers.)

In considering these examples and all the romances I’ve read, what makes a hero sexy to me is the way he treats his heroine/woman. If he can make her feel wanted, loved, cherished, and desired in her own right-that is one sexy guy. Throw a bit of kindness in there as well, and I’m a goner. Then, of course, if you add back in the first paragraph’s attributes- we’re talking scrumpdillitious yummy Godiva chocolate sexy hero.

Here’s hoping you find your hero
- Kit Donner
Whose first book, “The Notorious Bridegroom” from Zebra out on August 4, has an incredibly sexy hero.

What do YOU think makes a hero sexy?

You can view a book trailer for THE NOTORIOUS BRIDEGROOM here.

And you can visit Kit online at

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I Feel a Little Sin Comin' On!

Here it is, without further adieu, the LONG awaited cover for Sinful (Spice, May 2010), Lord Wallingford's book! Everything on this cover, from the stance, to the green, to the pose is just perfect for him!

So, what do you we think? Would you indulge in a little sin with him? And if you want a closer peek, just click the picture and it'll get bigger!

Friday, July 24, 2009


Holy almost-naked vampire, Batman! From the New Moon sneak-peek at Comic Con in San Diego. Didn't think it could wait till next Wednesday. I'm not really coherent enough to say any more than that....

Monday, July 20, 2009

LIT Ladies in D.C.

Hmmm, so I promised that the LIT Ladies would be blogging live from RWA, and silence. Guess what I left sitting on my kitchen table at home??? My laptop! Amanda and Charlotte had theirs, but internet was super-pricey and we all were almost never in our rooms, blogging.

However, a good time was had by all. This was a busy conference. It was--as always--wonderful and creatively refreshing to hang with Amanda and Charlotte. We even managed to plot out a possible fourth Celtic Spice anthology in a matter of minutes (when we were *supposed* to be going over our workshop notes, of course!). If only we could have more of these 'real life' gab sessions, who knows how much we could accomplish!

We also enjoyed a yummy Thai dinner with LIT regular Barbara (of the Happily Forever After blog). It was so great to meet her, and we had a lot of fun chatting about the conference and about romance in general (but why didn't anyone take pictures???).

Let's see....what else?! A fabulous Lebanese dinner with my fellow Harlequin NASCAR authors and the editorial team. An equally fabulous French lunch with Amanda, Charlotte, fellow Spice author Victoria Janssen, and our Spice editor, Lara Hyde.

I also got to spend some time with my long-time friends Sally MacKenzie, Eve Silver, Teresa Bodwell, Caroline Linden, Ann Christopher, Laura Drewry, Jessica Trapp, Jackie Ivie, and Colleen Gleason. Plus I made some new pals--the aforementioned Victoria Janssen, and Nicola Cornick (who I was lucky enough to sit beside at the Literacy signing--what a lovely woman!).

Between all that socializing, I also managed attended several terrific workshops, particularly one given by author Julie Anne Long and agent Steve Axelrod, and another given by the always-hysterical Anne Stuart.

And then there was the Harlequin party! Amanda, Charlotte and I took a taxi over to the Ritz-Carlton, swearing that we would only stay an hour or so, since we had to be up early to present our own workshop the following morning at 8:30 a.m. Instead, we danced the night away, and closed the place down. Who knew we were such party animals?!

Okay, that's about it in a nutshell. Photos, top to bottom: LIT ladies with our Harlequin Spice editor, Lara Hyde; Amanda and Charlotte; Kristi and Charlotte; Sally MacKenzie, Jackie Ivie, name unknown, Jessica Trapp, Ann Christopher, Kristi, and Eve Silver.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Post Nationals update

I am writing from a hotel(with free WiFi) in Cleveland, Ohio preparing to go to the Rock and roll hall of fame tomorrow and then on to Chicago and finally home on Monday!

I have been on a whirlwind "Americana road trip " with 5 of the 6 of my family and we have seen much and had a great time!

I apologize for not blogging more at RWA. But I had no idea of the pace this convention--aside from just making time to meet with editors and friends--speaking of--Kristi , Charlotte and I were able to spend some quality time between our varied schedules and get in a good visit. Each time I meet with these two, I see why I love working together with them on the Celtic Spice anthologies as well as hanging here at the manor.

Friday afternoon we went to lunch with Lara Hyde,our Spice editor. It was a wonderful couple of hours, spent sampling wonderful food and just getting to know each other.
There was a Harlequin single title mixer where we were able to meet some of the authors from the other single title lines at Harlequin. Eden Bradley, who sold her first single title to Spice Books at the conference, is planning to come join us here at the manor one of these days soon!
We met a whole list of people who are anxious to come for a visit to the manor, so there will be some surprises coming up in the days ahead!

We have some great pics via Kristi of the fabulous Harlequin Party on Friday night and as soon as everyone if home safe and sound we'll be sharing those with you.

We had a great supper one at at a Thai restaurant, with our own Barbara! It was great to meet this genuinely lovely woman! Thanks Barb and I hope to see you at Columbus in April!

I hope all of you are having a splendid July ! I cant hardly believe that its over! I've got to buckle down when I get home, and get prepared for the TORTURED tour, starting Aug.4--check my website if you are interested in hopping on the blog train!

Special note to Amy: I did wave at you;))) and I hope, hope hope you come to Columbus in April!!

Please remember Charlotte and Kristi as they travel home and us too as we continue our trek toward home!

Peace to all and 'rock on"

Amanda McIntyre

Monday, July 13, 2009

New Celtic Spice Site!

Well, the Lit Ladies are off to the RWA National Conference in Washington D.C., but check back later in the week, as we'll (hopefully) be blogging and uploading some photos (note to self: remember to pack the camera cord for downloading pics!).

But in the meantime, we proudly announce the launch of our new collaborative web site:

There's not much there yet, but soon we'll be populating the site with all kinds of interesting tidbits related to Celtic legends and lore, and our seasonal-themed Celtic Spice anthology series (kicking off with WINTER'S DESIRE in Nov. '09).

Be sure to check it out, and bookmark the site! Kudos to web designer extraordinaire Rae Monet for the stunning design.

And if you're headed to the RWA conference, safe travels, and see you soon!

Friday, July 10, 2009


The winner of the Wicked Wednesday "Caption This" contest is Mari!

Mari, email me at KCHWriter @ aol. com (minus the spaces) to claim your prize!

Thanks to everyone who participated--you guys are SO funny!!

Have a great weekend, everyone, and hope to see some of you next week in D.C. Don't forget the LIT Ladies are giving a workshop on Friday at 8:30 a.m. ("The Art of Collaboration")--we've got some really cool giveaways for attendees! And we'll all be signing at the Literacy event on Wednesday at 5:30.

And stay tuned for an announcement coming very soon about our new Celtic Spice web site launch! It should be any day now...

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wicked Wednesday -- 'Caption This' Contest!

Nothing says "wicked" more than blood, right?! Looks like a sexy vampire who just ate...

I think I'm going to use this pic as the inspiration for the vampire hero of my Samhain-themed Celtic Spice novella, "Midnight Sins" (in DARK PLEASURES, Fall 2012).

Yum! How about a 'caption this' contest...everyone post a caption, and I'll pick a winner on Friday, who will receive a surprise pack in the mail.

Sorry us LIT Ladies are so quiet these days--Amanda is traveling, Charlotte is chained to her desk with deadlines, and I'm busy with page proofs for one of my fall releases.

But be sure to check in next week, when we'll all be blogging live from RWA Nationals!

In the meantime, don't forget to post your captions--winner picked on Friday!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Real-life Heroes

Here at the LIT blog, we do a fair amount of discussing our favorite fictional heroes--the ones who leap off the page and make our pulse leap or our heart wrench. There's even...yes, I admit it...a fair amount of appreciation expressed for their physical (albeit sometimes imaginary) attributes.

But let's talk a bit about those real-life heroes in our lives (or even the ones we *wish* were in our real lives). Occasionally my hubby does something that I deem 'hero worthy,' even if it's a small gesture. Like yesterday. I needed to go to the mall to buy a gift, and to pick up a few new things for the RWA conference next week. Unfortunately, my best friend and usual shopping buddy is out of town and I was complaining over breakfast that I'd have to go to the mall alone. So hubby takes the kids to day camp, comes home, and announces that he's staying home from work and going to the mall with me. I think that's pretty heroic! He actually sat around watching me try on clothes for hours.

And there have been other times, too--like the time I was pregnant with daughter #1 and desperately craving banana Popsicles, which apparently aren't all that common up north (but I grew up eating them in the south). So hubby jumped in the car and drove around the entire metro NYC area, looking for banana Popsicles. Unsuccessfully, I'm afraid, but the effort counts.

And I won't even go into all he did for me following my brain surgery almost 15 yrs. ago, before we were even married, stuff that included basically playing nursemaid and caretaker when my mom wasn't around.

In real life, I don't really need someone to save me from villains, or to defend my honor in a duel, or even to save me from wagging tongues at Almack's. But help me find a cute shirt to go with my white skirt? That I need. Feed my pregnancy cravings? Yep. Take the kids to a movie so I can have a few hours alone to write? You betcha.'s to my hubby, my real-life hero, and to the little things that make me feel like a true heroine.

How about you? Any real-life hero stories to share? C'mon, let's give the real-life men in our lives some love!

*the pic above is my hubby many years ago, by the bust of James Joyce in St. Stephen's Green, Dublin, Ireland*