Friday, February 29, 2008

E-BOOKS— for a Happy Future

Are ebooks the new trend in reading? Or are readers reluctant to buy them?

Since my first book was released from Cerridwen Press as an ebook, it seemed fitting to discuss the reasons people read or don’t read ebooks.

I personally discovered ebooks a couple months ago. Somehow I thought it would be difficult to download them. Well the first time I bought an ebook, I couldn’t believe it took exactly ten seconds for the download. Doubting my own sight, I checked. The book was here, saved in Adobe on my computer. By the way, the first e-book I bought was Mad About Mirabelle by Amarinda Jones. I read it on my monitor screen at a comfortable font size. It was easier to read than printed books with tiny letters and provided a good break from writing while I sat at my computer, reading, laughing and relaxing.

After my first attempt, I became an advocate of ebooks. You can buy them from the comfort of your office. And they are easier to store. I have four floor-to-ceiling bookcases. On the first shelf of the one across from my desk, my father’s books are proudly displayed. On the second and third shelves, I have arranged the autographed books of my published friends and authors of my chapters. My bookcases are full, some with double rows of books. In addition, I have two big boxes of favorite old books, mostly historicals. How I wish they were all ebooks. It’s becoming an issue in my household to buy a new book without giving away an old one to make room.

As Liz Jasper said in a recent post on the Pink Fuzzy Slippers blog: Some readers like the fact that e-books allow authors to push the boundaries of prescribed genres: romance with mystery, or mystery with romance or maybe ghosts or shape shifter's in a hard-boiled mystery. It may be hard to find such novels in a traditional bookstore because, since they don't fit neatly into a specific section of a bookstore. Traditional publishers aren't willing to take the risk that an audience will find them. Well said, Liz.

I recently heard from a friend whose son lives in Japan that over there some schools have replaced all printed books with ebooks. The kids don’t have to carry a heavy load on their way to school, just their eReaders, and at school they use computers. Who knows, it may not be long before ebooks slowly replace the printed books.

By the way, I travel often and I can’t carry too many books with me, especially with some airlines charging for each suitcase checking. Since I read mostly when I am away from home, I'm looking for an eReader to buy before my next trip. I will download as many ebooks as I can and enjoy them while I am away from home.

So why are some people reluctant to read ebooks?

Tell us why you like or don’t like to buy and read eBooks?

You can also stop to check Anny Cook’s blog and Kelly Kirch’s blog Anny is running a contest. Enter now to win free books! If you need to brighten your day with a smile, check Amarinda Jones's blog, And if you own and love pets, the place to go is Sandra’s Cox blog,

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Romantic Times American Title Contest

Yesterday I inaugurated my blog by presenting my two books TO LOVE A HERO and FRENCH PERIL. To be honest, I was quite anxious on how my first attempt at blogging on my own would be received. Thanks to your many comments and support, I feel more confident today. My plan is to reserve Monday, Wednesday and Friday for various topics, while Tuesday and Thursday will be used to introduce authors and writers.

And here is to start an interview with Helen Scott-Taylor who reached the prestigious position of finalist in the Romantic Time American Title contest IV. Helen resides in South Western England near Plymouth with the rocky cliffs of the Atlantic to the south and the windswept expanse of Dartmoor to the west. She writes paranormal and believes that deep within everyone there's a little magic.

Let’s ask her how she feels about it and then we will go and vote for her at: www.romantictimes/news_amtitle3.php.

Helen, I’m so glad you agreed to be interviewed.

Helen, you are currently competing for the AT IV. Winning contests is not unusual for you after winning the Golden Pen and the Golden Palm and so many other prestigious contests.

Which story did you enter in the RT American Title IV and in which category?
This year the American Title contest featured paranormal romance. I entered The Magic Knot, my story about fairies, set in Ireland and Cornwall.

Do you have a short blurb for your finaling manuscript?
When Rose discovers she is the Cornish fairy queen and her father is a dark druid who has imprisoned her people in portraits, the race is on to discover the fairy lore needed to release her people before her father destroys them forever.
She seeks help from the sinfully sexy Irish fairy twins, the O’Connor brothers. Niall’s faint air of menace flutters dark thrills of anticipation through her, but does he want to kiss her or kill her when she accidentally touches his Magic Knot and forges a mystical lovers’ bond with him?

You still have a month before they announce the winner. You must be going through an incredible stress. How are you coping? I cope by keeping busy and doing all I can to drum up support. If I’m sure I’ve done my best to win, then I’ll be happy with the outcome. Whatever the final result, it was a tremendous boost to have The Magic Knot selected by the Dorchester editors as one of the ten finalists. I’m also delighted to have met the other nine finalists and made a new group of friends. We have set up an American Title IV finalists' blog together at

I had the privilege of reading The Magic Knot and I love it. Can you tell our readers why we should all go and vote for you?
I hope everyone will fall in love with my characters, because I love them and the way they overcome the traumas of the past: the hero's struggle to understand why his father claimed his twin brother and rejected him, the heroine's search to find her estranged father and understand her suppressed childhood memories. Ultimately, of course, they find their happy ending in each other.

Voting in the fifth and final round of American Title IV is best love/romantic scene and runs from February 18th until March 2nd at www.romantictimes/news_amtitle3.php
Please take a look and vote for the scene you enjoy most.

Helen, thank you for being with us today. I wish you the best of luck in the final round of the American Title IV.

Dear readers, you can also stop to check two great posts on critique and critique partners at Anny Cook’s blog and Kelly Kirch’s blog Anny is running a contest. Enter now to win free books! If you need to brighten your day with a smile, check Amarinda Jones's blog, And if you own and love pets, the place to go is Sandra’s Cox blog,

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Welcome to my new blog

After shying away, procrastinating, hesitating, I finally set my own blog. While I brainstorm interesting posts, let me introduce you to my books.

My debut book TO LOVE A HERO is available at Cerridwen Press.

Raised in boarding schools, Cecile buried her loneliness under long hours of study and work. On the rebound of a broken engagement, she is determined to excel in her first international contract, the refurbishment of an environmental laboratory in Belarus.
BUT… In Belarus, a Russian country dominated by male chauvinism and intrigues, Dr. Cecile Lornier finds more chemistry than she bargains for.
Admired by men and adored by women, Major General Sergei is a true hero in his country. The widowed Sergei has pledged to clean his country of the pollution left by the Chernobyl disaster.
BUT… With a glass of vodka in his hand and the lovely Cecile nestled in his arms, Sergei has more on his mind now than patriotic duty and nuclear pollution, and Cecile soon learns that chemicals are not the only things that generate heat. Can she betray his trust to save his career? Would her love cost him everything he values?

Mona Risk writes heroes with heart, heroines with spunk in stories and settings that are simply unforgettable!
-- Roxanne St. Claire,Killer Curves, National Bestseller--

To Love A Hero is an intriguing romance set in an exotic locale.
-- Beth Trissel--

A wonderful contemporary romance with an independent, likable heroine and a to die for military hero, set in the exotic and facinating setting of Belarussia. I couldn't put this book down. From the first page when the heroine falls into the hero's arms on a broken escalator the sparks fly between the two main characters. The author blends the romance with an exciting plot that keeps the pace of the story fast. One of the best contemporary romances I've read in a long time.
--Helen Scott-Taylor--

My second book FRENCH PERIL, a Romantic Suspense, has been accepted for publication at Cerridwen Press.

What could be more exciting for a young architect than to live in a French chateau owned by a young count and to work on the restoration of a chapel in the Loire Valley? When her professor is poisoned because he knew too much about a missing statue, Cheryl's summer job develops into a dangerous treasure hunt.

Count François, a confirmed bachelor and admitted womanizer, wants to redeem himself in his family’s eyes. The unearthing of the statue and the restoration of the chapel would revive tourism in the area and bring back prosperity to his villagers. But Cheryl’s arrival complicates both his search for the statue and his determination to avoid serious involvement.