Tag Archives: blog hop

Book Lovers Tag

Here’s a fun post for all. This is a Book Lovers Tag challenge. I came across this great tag over at D.G. Kaye Writer’s blog, where she invited anyone to join in. I thought it would be exciting to jump into the challenge, as besides being an author, I love reading romance novels (hence the blog’s namesake)! So, why not?

Do you have a specific place for reading?

Mostly, I read in bed, but now and then I cart one of my books to the living room or dining room and set up shop. And if I’m feeling really adventurous (this helps if we have pleasant weather, which is never a guarantee in Indiana), then I’ll sit outside on the patio and read to my heart’s content. 😉 Now and then, I actually read on the Kindle app on my tablet, but I’m more of a paperback/hardback kind of girl. The tactile sensation of a page turning still gets my bibliophile obsession going. I think it’s better to find a comfortable spot that practically absorbs you into the environment. The outside world with all its troubles can drift away, and then you’re on your merry way to discovering a new literary realm.

Bookmarks or random pieces of paper?

Sure, I have bookmarks. I’ve even collected quite a few to hand out at my own release parties. I don’t always use them for my own reading purposes, however. Yeah, I’m one of those freaks that dogears the pages, but I always bend the corner back to its old position when I’m finished. To each his (or her) own, I guess.

Can you just stop anywhere or must it be at the end of a chapter?

Oh, I do my best to finish a chapter, unless I get so drowsy that I absolutely have to stop wherever I left off.

Do you eat or drink while reading?

No, I usually don’t eat while reading. Occasionally, I’ll snack on chips or dark chocolate, but mostly, I just keep hydrated. I can’t do much else besides read, especially if the book is that riveting. I like to immerse myself in the literary world and come up for air hours later.

Music or TV while reading?

Not at all. Are you crazy? Why would I let anything else distract me from reading? LOL.

One book at a time or several?

One at a time, but now and then, I’ll gradually work on a Kindle novel in between reading paperbacks.

Do you prefer to read at home or elsewhere?

I often read at home, but I don’t have any trouble reading on a driving trip, as long as the lighting is sufficient. And I always, always take reading material with me when I go on vacation, even if it’s only for a day or two. I never know when the mood will strike me. In college, I used to read out on the quad or in hallways outside classrooms so I really have no trouble reading in the most random place.

Read out loud or silently?

Silently, though I am known to laugh outright at the funniest parts. It’s somewhat satisfying to earn a lifted eyebrow from passersby. I feel like it’s my literary world I’ve fallen into, so I am entitled to the occasional private joke.

Do you read ahead or skip pages?

Never! When I was younger, I grew impatient with lengthy descriptions of the curtains and such in historical novels, but once I matured I understood that the novel as a whole made the reading experience. So now, I read everything.

Breaking the spine or keeping it like new?

I don’t try to abuse a book in any fashion. But I am known to go back and re-read well-loved books, so they get that creased and worn look on the spine at times. Never broken or bent in half, however. I happen to think those creases are like people. The more they’ve been around, the wiser and more loved the individuals are.

Do you write in your books?

Nope! In college, I used to annotate or highlight certain passages of textbooks for studying, but with the novels I read for pleasure, I want them to look as clean as possible.

That was fun! I invite you all to join the Book Lovers Tag challenge and share your reading habits. Feel free to link back to this post so I can visit and share yours too.



Filed under Blogging, Books, Event, Marie Lavender, Message, Readers, Romance, Writing

A Blog Hop…jump on and join me!

Fellow author Linda Lee Williams invited me on a Blog Hop. She answered the following questions and then “tagged” me, and three other authors to do the same.  Here is her original post.


After my post, I will tag three authors as well. What a great idea! Thank you, Linda! 

Mariepic2 - small

Here are the answers to my questions:

1. What am I working on?

Well, I just finished a paranormal romance/urban fantasy about a woman who stumbles into the world of vampires. In the process, she learns more about herself than she ever imagined. The manuscript is with beta readers now, and the title is Second Nature.

Soon, I will get back to work on the third book of the Heiresses in Love trilogy. It is a historical romance called Upon Your Love. Upon Your Love is set in Victorian times right in New Orleans, though there is a slight diversion in England. The heroine is not your typical Victorian young woman, and she gets into all sorts of trouble when she decides to do a matchmaking scheme with a gentleman she just met. She and the gentleman are trying to pair up their mutual friends, but they don’t expect to be drawn to each other in the process. Soon enough, her gentleman friend finds out what sort of hellion he’s trying to charm. Without giving away any spoilers, let’s just say that all sorts of interesting things happen.

I am also doing a romantic suspense collaboration with a writing partner. It is titled Certain Death, and it is about a female scientist who discovers a terrible secret. Soon, there are all sorts of hit men after her and one of them even decides to protect her. I am also finishing up an anthology with stories and poems that I hope to release soon.


2. How does my work differ from others in my genre?

I think I just go with whatever my heart tells me to do. Even if it goes against industry standards, I am just telling a story. With Upon Your Honor, my newest release, I sort of realized later on that the novel had a lot of suspense in it, probably more than most Victorian romances. In a way, it crossed genres. That wasn’t my intention at all though. I am just trying to show a human experience somewhere in the pages. I only hope that my readers see it too.


3. Why do I write what I do?

I love romance. I can’t stop writing about it. I always loved watching romance movies or reading love stories. I couldn’t get enough of it. To me, romance is an escape, but also reality. Believe me, even though we are in modern times, there are still gentlemen out there. There are still people that know how to be romantic. And I think love does that for people. If you love someone, you want to do things for that individual. You want to make them happy. And that’s really all romance is. A simple gesture like picking a flower for your girl or holding her hand – it is a gesture that speaks for itself. It says you appreciate that person, that you want to be with them. Romance can be shown in many ways, and what better way than to create a story with that element?


4. How does my writing process work?

My writing process is, to say the least, a bit complicated. At first, I am pretty haphazard about my writing projects. I write on stories spontaneously. When I finally decide what to focus on, however, that’s when the real work begins. From there, I have to figure out what is going to happen in the book. I usually have a pretty general idea of the plot, but at that point I have to go into more detail by writing a full outline. This also helps keep me on track while I’m finishing the book. The outline tells what parts of the project I need to work on next, whether it is developing characters, writing a scene or doing research on a particular topic.

Once the book is finished, I go back and do my own edits and during that process, that gives me more of an idea of what story elements I should work on. Maybe more research needs to be done, further character development, describing a particular place, et cetera. Then once I am completely satisfied with it (LOL! That’s funny because we never are…there’s always something you can think to fix), I send it to beta readers and critique partners. Based on their feedback, that tells me if more work should be done. This process can take awhile.

Upon Your Return, my first historical romance, took me years to write. The sequel took me a year. I have written other books as well, and some have taken months. It really just depends on the project. Historical books, of course, take a little longer because there is no room for error. Accuracy is vital to the story.


So there’s my contribution to this blog hop. I hope the blog hop reaches far and wide, and a lot of authors can connect. Thank you, Linda, for choosing me.

Linda Lee Williams, Paranormal Romance Author



Linda’s Books:


And here’s who I’ve tagged:

P.I. Barrington, Author of Science Fiction, Paranormal/Futuristic Crime Thrillers and Horror with a hint of Romance



P.I. Barrington’s Books:



LaRae Parry, Author of Romance and Humor/Satire, and all around “Crazy Lady”

1Larae 093


LaRae Parry’s Books:


Matty Millard, Author of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Humor/Satire



Matty Millard’s Books:

 first issue but without price

And, of course, here are my books: 

Written as Marie Lavender: 

UponYourReturn_E-bookCoverMoonlight and Magick by Marie LavenderImage

Written as Erica Sutherhome:

1-hardtogetmemory1 ahintofscandal1withoutyou11strangeheatterrornighthaunted



Written as Kathryn Layne: 


Written as Heather Crouse:


Oh, and if you’d like to participate in the blog hop, just answer the following questions and tag me in your post. Let’s keep this crazy writing chain going!  Happy blogging!  🙂


Filed under Books, Historical Romance, Literary Fiction, Romance, Thriller/Suspense, Writing