Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Navy Seal Seduction now in Walmart!

Navy Seal Seduction, my romantic suspense book from Harlequin, is now available in Walmart at a discounted price!

This is quite exciting for me as an author to see my book in a big box store. I haven't had a new release in Walmart in a few years, not since the chain stopped carrying the Nocturne line.

Here's a preview of the book:

Navy Seal Seduction is a reunion romance that takes place on a tropical island about to erupt into civil war…
With the island nation of St. Marc erupting in civil war, SEAL Jarrett Adler must rescue the woman he never got over—his alluring ex-wife, Lacey. Jarrett regrets failing her as a husband, and he hopes protecting her will offer a second chance to win her trust.

As charming and sexy as Jarrett still is, Lacey knows he won’t stick around. She’s found her niche in nonprofit work and longs to create a family of her own. But when death threats and bombs arrive at her door, she turns to the man who still holds her heart. Can Jarrett and Lacey navigate their way home—and back into each other’s arms?

EXCERPT FROM NAVY SEAL SEDUCTION
(Copyright 2016 by Bonnie Vanak)


A tall, muscled pirate in a clean white shirt and black trousers stood before her in the courtyard of Le Soleil Hotel. Scowling to hide her emotions, she stared, her heart racing as if she’d run a mile up and down the nearby mountain. Black hair cropped short, he wore a pressed white shirt, the cuffs rolled up to display tanned, muscled forearms. Smooth cheeks, strong jaw and a nose that had been broken at least once.

Rugged, tough and those eyes, green as the ocean water he navigated on a mission.

Those eyes had turned smoky and dark with passion as they’d made love, and cold as the Arctic the day she’d announced she’d hired a lawyer to initiate divorce proceedings. Whoa, he still had it. Hot, hot, hot, as the locals said. Bad boy to the extreme, who made her female parts say Why, hello there!

Her female parts needed to stay quiet. This time she’d listen to her broken heart and not her hormones, even though her heart jumped at the sight of him.

He had never been there for her before, and certainly wasn’t staying now.

Lacey managed to find her voice. “I hope this is a bad dream and I’ll wake up and find you gone.”

Her ex-husband pulled out a chair, turned it around and straddled it. “Well, darling, it seems your nightmare isn’t going away. Neither am I.”

She managed to conceal her trembling hands by wrapping her fingers tight around the beer bottle. Lacey took a deep drink, relishing the cool wash of liquid sliding down her throat. It reminded her of that time after they’d consumed several beers and then he’d kissed her and they had…

Not. Going. There.

“Go away, Jarrett. If you’re here on a mission, aren’t you supposed to be invisible in your invincibility?”
He did not smile. Flickering candlelight on the table revealed the sharp angles and planes of his lean face.
Jarrett looked all business.

“You’re my mission. I’m taking you out of here. I booked us on tomorrow’s early-morning flight.” He glanced around. “Before the elections and before this place blows to hell.”

Jarrett, trying to be funny, except his expression was dead serious. Had he heard about the mysterious vandalism plaguing her compound? It had been a few minor incidents she’d written off as a nuisance caused by locals who didn’t like how she helped women, until last week’s truck fire.

That fire had not been a nuisance. It had destroyed her best working vehicle.

She glanced around at the two other occupied tables and lowered her voice.

“Are you insane? I’m not going anywhere with you.”

“St. Marc is teetering on a coup and I’m taking you back to the States.”

She knew St. Marc intimately, shied away from the hot spots and knew how to handle herself. “Elections are in two days. I know about the violence and know how to avoid it. As soon as elections are over, things will cool down. Stop wasting your time.”

“You’re at risk of getting shot, kidnapped or both.”

“The media exaggerates about a few protests downtown. It’s not violent here.”

Jarrett turned his head as six men carrying sinister-looking guns trotted out onto the courtyard, racing off toward the hotel disco. His mouth curved in a knowing smile.

“The president is here with his friends. He likes the disco,” she snapped.

“Do all his friends carry assault rifles?”

“It’s the latest fashion craze. Goes well with the Guayabera shirts. We do like to accessorize here on St. Marc.”

The smile dropped, replaced with a dark stare. The Look. How many times had he aimed it at her in the past? The man had a stubborn streak bigger than a US Navy destroyer. Jarrett leaned forward. “This country is eroding into civil unrest, Lace, elections or no elections. You need to get out. How many State
Department warnings does it take before you’ll listen?”


Anger fisted in her stomach. “Those warnings are for the tourists who come here to do poverty tours or sun themselves on the beaches. Not for ex-pats like me or Paul. And who the hell are you to tell me what to do? We’re no longer married.”

She was twenty-nine, no longer that wide-eyed girl who’d fallen hard and fast for the handsome Navy sailor with a wicked smile, husky laugh and skilled hands.
Marlee’s Mangoes was her dream now, not a life of domestic bliss with a SEAL who was gone more than he’d been home.

Gone, too, when she needed him the most. Lacey clenched her beer bottle again and pushed away thoughts of the baby they’d lost. That was the past, and St. Marc was her future.
Jarrett Adler belonged to those ghosts she’d exorcised out of her life.

“Paul.” Jarrett’s gaze narrowed. “That simpering metrosexual who’s with you?”

Blinking, she struggled to leash her temper. “Paul Lawrence is the vice president of the board for Marlee’s Mangoes and my business partner.”

The realization hit her. “Where is he? Did you do something to him, Jarrett? We’re supposed to be meeting a very important donor.”

“The very important donor driving a late-model white Montero SUV? He was unavoidably detained in the parking lot. Your vice president went to help him.”

More interference. But this time he messed with her livelihood. “Damn, Jarrett, this is my life. You’re not part of it anymore, so go home and get out of here.”

“Not without you. Darling, I’m sticking to your side until I deliver you home.”

She studied him with a keen eye. “Get used to disappointment. I’m not leaving.”
Jarrett reached out, touched her hand. “Don’t argue with me, Lacey. We haven’t seen each other in a long time, and I’d rather spend what little time we have together catching up. Or engaged in more pleasurable activities.”

A shiver of awareness raced down her spine as he slowly stroked his thumb over the back of her hand. His smug smile dropped, replaced with a burning intensity that could melt steel. When Jarrett aimed that look at her, she’d wanted to do whatever he wanted. Usually it had involved getting naked in very inventive places.

“Our days of getting horizontal are over,” she warned, drawing away her hand.
He considered, and scratched the bristles on his dimpled chin. “Vertical’s always fun, too. Or we could try those swinging chairs down by the pool.”

Friday, July 15, 2016

Tweets from RWA and Michael Hauge's great workshop

I'm not at RWA 2016 (sob!) but I have followed Twitter closely. There's a great person who tweeted detailed notes from Michael Hauge's workshop. I retweeted all her notes and presented them below for those of you who are interested. The notes are very helpful when you are starting a new book, like me, or revamping a WIP.

And follow https://twitter.com/ArtWellPub  on Twitter. Best conference workshop notes ever! Thank you!



The secondary characters should be introduced before the MC begins pursuing their goal. @michael_hauge #RWA16
Once the MC is living in their essence, they develop the strength to overcome the nemesis. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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At the end of the story, show the h/h not only living happily ever after, but leading transformed, courageous lives. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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Before the midpoint, the h/h connect at the essence level, but then retreat back into their essence. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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The h/h come together because they connect at the level of their essence. Their conflict is at the identity level. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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The love interest must be the object of the MC's active pursuit. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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At the end of the story, the MC is forced to choose between the outer goal and the love interest. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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In a love story, the heroine should have a goal other than the love story at the beginning. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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The rival is often the nemesis in a love story. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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The nemesis character is the MC's opponent and must be stronger than the MC. The nemesis embodies the inner conflict. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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10.   You Retweeted

A secondary reflection character might be an enabler who discourages the MC from achieving the goal. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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11.   You Retweeted

The reflection character may be a sidekick, a spouse, a mentor, a guardian, or a wise child. @michael_hauge #RWA16
12.   You Retweeted

The reflection character is closest to the MC, helping her reach her outer goal and pushing her toward her essence. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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13.   You Retweeted

Secondary characters may also have their own arc. Usually the nemesis doesn't. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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14.   You Retweeted
The secondary characters are defined by the outer conflict but illuminate the inner conflict. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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15.   You Retweeted
When the MC initially starts pursuing the goal, they believe it will allow them to stay in their identity. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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16.   You Retweeted
"Story tells us how to live better." ~Will Smith @michael_hauge #RWA16
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17.   You Retweeted
The character's choice is to be safe and stuck or to be fulfilled and terrified. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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18.   You Retweeted
The only way the heroine can win the hero is through the death of her identity (and vice versa). @michael_hauge #RWA16
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20.   You Retweeted
The character believes that their identity is who they truly are. That's why they can't let it go. @michael_hauge #RWA16
21.   You Retweeted

In the story, the MC can't achieve the goal without stripping off their armor and living in their essence. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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22.   You Retweeted
The character's essence is the true self beneath their identity - the person they have the potential to become. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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23.   You Retweeted
The identity keeps the character safe, but it also keeps them stuck. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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24.   You Retweeted
The character's identity is the mask or false self she presents to the world to protect her from her fear. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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25.   You Retweeted
What the character fears is experiencing the wound again. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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26.   You Retweeted
False beliefs become so ingrained that the character ignores all evidence to the contrary. @michael_hauge #RWA16


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27.   You Retweeted
Beliefs that grow from wounds are never true but always logical. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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28.   You Retweeted
Identify the MC's belief: the false understanding of the world that developed from the wound. @michael_hauge #RWA16


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Identify your MC's wound: an unhealed source of continuing pain from before the action begins, usually adolescence. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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Every story has four basic elements: character, desire, conflict, and change. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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By the end of the story, the main characters have changed, as have the other characters, story world, reader & author. @michael_hauge #RWA16


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Open your story in the MC's ordinary world. Reveal two familiar characteristics and one unique one. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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When the story opens, create empathy for the MC before you reveal their flaws. @michael_hauge #RWA16
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There are several ways to create empathy for the MC: 1. Show your MC experiencing an undeserved misfortune. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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You can create empathy by 2) placing your MC in jeopardy or 3) making you MC likeable. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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You can create empathy by 4) showing your MC's expertise or 5) making your MC funny. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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37.   You Retweeted

In the setup, your MC should be stuck: in some state of inertia that stops her from living her authentic life. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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38.   You Retweeted

The other journey, the inner journey, is one of transformation from living in fear to living in courage. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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39.   You Retweeted

Ask what your character's longing is. A longing is something they say they want but take no action to get. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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Most characters are so shut down they won't even admit that something is missing. This is the character's need. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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The hero or heroine in a story is not heroic in the beginning, but has the potential to become heroic. @michael_hauge #RWA16

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By the end, the MC stops asking, what can I do to not be afraid, and starts asking, am I willing to be afraid.  

Once the MC is living in their essence, they develop the strength to overcome the nemesis.