Tuesday, November 27, 2012

What's Next?

Her Handyman by Morgan Mandel
I got a little sidetracked by Thanksgiving and my freebie promotion of  the romantic comedy, Her Handyman, which took a lot of doing. The competition is fierce. To get anyone to notice a book, even if it's free, isn't very easy. I did zillions of tweets, visited my Facebook groups and pages more than people probably wanted me to, and also sent out email blasts to egroups and personal friends, plus devised other methods to get attention, kind of like my dog, Rascal, does when I'm at the keyboard.

The result was 2,322 more readers got to see Her Handyman than would have otherwise. At one point I got up to #137 on the Free Kindle Store list at Amazon, and was also #40 in Contemporary Romance. This was a decent showing, considering my promotion took place over Black Friday and Small Business Saturday, when tons of people were shopping, recuperating from Thanksgiving, or still out of town.

I will be doing further promotions from time to time, but now must buckle down and finish Blessing or Curse, the sequel to Forever Young: Blessing or Curse.

Blessing or Curse
by Morgan Mandel
While Forever Young: Blessing or Curse is a thriller with a touch of romance, Blessing or Curse is a romance, with a touch of thriller.

Blessing or Curse focuses more on the personal lives of five very diverse people and those they love, but there are a few villains lurking in the background and also the aspect of the Forever Young pill, which turns someone back to a desired age. I wish someone would hurry up and invent one!

Forever Young: Blessing or Curse
by Morgan Mandel

If you didn't get your copy of Her Handyman, it's still available for kindle at the huge amount of 99 cents at http://amzn.com/B0097EVXBK

Morgan Mandel
Twitter: @MorganMandel

Sunday, November 18, 2012

My Guest, Romance Author Debra St. John, Tells Us About Her Next Big Thing for Thanksgiving

My guest today is a very good friend of mine and a great romance author, by the name of Debra St. John. Debra is answering questions to share her Next Big Thing for Thanksgiving with us.

What is the title of your book?
An Unexpected Blessing

Where did the idea come from for the book?
I wanted to write a Thanksgiving story, so I had a lot of the background details in my head. I knew it would include all the best things about the holiday: food, things to be thankful for, and time with family. I also knew I wanted the setting to be a small town. The actual plot for the storyline just came to me one day.

What genre does your book fall under?
Contemporary romance. I’d call it cozy with some spice!

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Well, he’s not really an actor, but country singer Justin Moore has the right look and the right smile to play Joe. I think Natalie Portman would make a good Katy.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When an ex-con and the girl he’s had a secret crush on for years reunite, the sparks fly and attraction blooms, but their love is put to the test by small town gossip that can’t get over his past.

Is your book self-published or represented by an agency?
It’s available from The Wild Rose Press.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
About two months.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday, but it so often gets pushed aside and forgotten in the rush to get to Christmas. I wanted a book to celebrate all of the wonderful things about Thanksgiving.

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?
My heroine, Katy, shares my views about Christmas needing to wait its turn in order to give Thanksgiving its rightful due!


 “Are you going to dance with me or not?”
     “Yes, ma’am, I am.” He stood and offered his hand.
     She slid hers into his warm grasp. As always, his touch caused a little shock in her heart. The weight of a hundred pairs of eyes followed them out onto the floor. The dirt was packed smooth, and a ring of hay bales marked the area. Her tummy quivered with a combination of nerves and anticipation.
     He found an open spot, which wasn’t difficult with the other couples affording them a wide berth, and then curved his arm around her waist to draw her close. Her body fit perfectly against him. A shiver tingled through her. She rested her free hand on his shoulder.
     His thigh brushed hers as he rhythmically shuffled his feet to the music. His gaze captured and held hers. The rest of the room faded as she stared into the warm, melted chocolate brown of his eyes.
     She didn’t care that people whispered. Snuck glances. Or outright gaped. All she cared about was swaying to a soft, slow beat. The quicker thud of her heart. Strong arms wrapped around her. And the desire to stay right where she was. Maybe forever.

Please welcome Debra St. John by leaving a comment. 

To see my review of Unexpected Blessing, go to:

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Blessing or Curse Coming Soon

Blessing or Curse
by Morgan Mandel
What Blessing or Curse is:

Blessing or Curse is the sequel to the science fiction thriller,  Forever Young: Blessing or Curse. This book can be read as a standalone or part of the projected three-book series.

In the first book, the emphasis is on a 55-year old widow, who takes the young pill turning her back to 24. All should have been wonderful, but then she makes a discovery which has her fleeing both from the villains and the law.

Blessing or Curse, the new book, is chiefly a romance, with a smattering of science fiction, since no one yet has invented a Forever Young pill. It's broken into five separate stories depicting how the pill impacts the lives of five test market subjects, and whether or not their choice was the right one. These participants come from differing ethnicities, ages and classes, yet all have a reason to be young. The loved ones of these characters are also at some point in the stories impacted by the test subject's age reversion.

Here's the lineup of stories:

Desperation forces Consuela to order the Forever Young pill to cure her husband, Diego, who suffers from Parkinson’s Disease; but will the cure become a curse?

Ezekiel, an African-American male with  E.D. difficulties, sends in for the young pill to prevent his lady love, Luana, from discovering he can’t get it up. Will the pill draw her closer or drive her away?

Strawberry blonde model, Sherri’s popularity is fading with her looks. The pill can bring her fame and fortune, but what about love?

Overweight Chicago Police Officer Walinski must pass a new physical or lose his job, along with his canine partner. Will the young pill provide security, when danger lurks in the line of duty? 

Downtrodden going-on-sixty housewife, Dee Dee Marshall, suspects her husband of infidelity, and will do anything to keep him, even take an experimental pill. What she really needs is self-confidence.

A Sneak Peek at Consuela and Diego's Story: 

First Trial Run -  Albuquerque, New Mexico

Consuela & Diego Morales

Ah, the wonderful love they’d shared. Why must it end this way?
“Diego, eat,” Consuela Morales said, holding out a spoonful of puree to her shrunken, wheelchair-bound husband. His dry parched lips remained obstinately shut, his gray eyebrows furrowed. He wanted to die and she didn’t blame him. God help her, sometimes she wanted him dead too. Till death do us part seemed a long time to live with half a man.
Placing the spoon into the jar with a klunk, Consuela gazed morosely at her husband. Mamacita, God rest her soul, had warned her not to marry a man twenty years older, but the ripe, chestnut-haired Consuela had paid no heed, choosing passion over common sense. Diego of the raised eyebrows, straight black hair and cocky mannerisms had fevered her blood, making her come alive as no other man could.
She remembered the exact moment he’d strode into the basement of her friend, Isabella’s brownstone. As their eyes met, her heart raced beneath the confines of her ample breasts, almost drowning out the background sounds of New Year’s Eve TV reveling.
Quickly averting her eyes, she whispered to her friend, Isabel, “Who is that studly guy?”
Isabel glanced at the new addition and frowned in concentration. “Oh, that must Diego, Alessandro’s cousin. He broke up with his girl and asked if he could come with tonight. He’s hot, if you go for father figures.”
 “My father never looked that good his entire life. That man steams. I need to cool off some.” 

I'm still rounding out Dee Dee Marshall's experience. Then we'll have the full house! Hope to have it ready soon, in between promoting Her Handyman, my humorous romance.