At Rainy Day Reviews you will find
my personal reviews on books as well as reading challenges, weekly memes I participate in, and all other bookish topics.
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When Liza Trent decided to become a mail order bride out west, she never imagined her fiancé would die before she arrived. His death places her in debt, and the only way to pay off the money is by auctioning off her virginity against her will. When she’s rescued by two handsome men, she mistakenly thinks they’re assassins. Despite her reservations, she accepts their protection.
Only the two men, Apollo Beck and Blue Hawke, aren’t assassins. They’re Texas Rangers sent after a man who preys on women, and their dangerous hunt has just brought Liza into the line of fire.
Confused with the attraction she feels for two men, Liza has a difficult decision before her: commit to loving Apollo and Blue or commit to her burning desire to become a doctor…unless she’s found and taken for revenge first.
Tips for Becoming a Better Writer by Beth D. Carter
There is perhaps no other creative outlet that
bares an artist’s soul quite like writing.
Whether it’s writing penning, songs or stories, the modern-day bard has
to tap into deep recesses of the soul.
Writing stories can be a rollercoaster journey, full of emotional ups
and downs as the writer tries to convey believable characters and
situations. A writer pours their very
essence into their creation, much like Dr. Frankenstein into his monster. Add a little electricity and pretty soon the
author is shouting “It’s Alive!”.
And then the writer turns in the manuscript, along
with his or hers heart, hopes and dreams.
So what happens when it’s out of the hands of the writer? Well, I’m sure an editor or an owner of a
publishing house can answer that question precisely, but I’m here to give the
writer’s point of view.
First of all, the
manuscript can’t raise the red flags that initial readers look for. Initial
readers are those people who have to wade through the tons of manuscripts
looking for something that captures their attention and thus will turn over
those they like to someone higher up. That’s why it’s important to send a
relatively clean manuscript. Give it to a friend to beta read and point out any
Read other books.
This is a very important step…read, read, read. Writing is an organic process,
meaning you should always learn how to write better. What better way to learn
than by reading?
characters different voices. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read stories
from friends and each character was basically the same. People are different
and writing them should be the same way.
Be careful of point
of view. Since you are an unknown you can’t switch POV’s from person to person
within the same chapter. Once you’re Lisa Kleypas it’s perfectly okay, but
until you sell 14 million books you have to watch the POV. And lastly, don’t
have your hero or heroine be something that you know nothing about! If you
aren’t a genius and don’t know how to write mathematical equations, then don’t
have your hero be John Forbes Nash, Jr. Characters need to be believable and if
you can’t pull that off then you won’t have a wonderful manuscript.
Lastly, listen to your characters, they will usually tell you which way
to take the story. I never ignore
my characters or my intuition. Your
novel is only as good as they are, so don’t be afraid of the voices in your
head. Happy writing!
As a published author I get asked many questions along the
lines of “What tips can you give me so I can get published”. For each writer, this is different journey. First
of all, no matter what road of publishing you travel, the first thing you need
is a completed manuscript. Most
publishing houses, even the small press ones, usually accept a minimum of
20,000 words. This translates into about
85-90 publishable pages. Dialogue has to
be sharp, content has to be relatable, and characters have to have an Arc, with
believable tension and drama. If you
feel you have a great manuscript, then I suggest finding critique partners who
can give you honest opinions, and not your mom or dad or best friend. One of the hardest things a writer can do is
accept criticism. Writing groups are
great, either online or in person, and sometimes there are people you can pay
to read and “proofread” your work.
Next, is editing. One
of the biggest complaints I read or heard is how self-published books have
horrendous grammatical and spelling mistakes.
Remember, a self-publishing company simply takes your emailed submission
and prints it out, without taking one look at the content. Readers HATE obvious editorial
mistakes and will badmouth your work from here to Doomsday even if you’ve
written a Pulitzer Prize worthy novel.
These are the steps of editing I go through for getting any
of my stories to print, whether ebook novella, short novel, or paperback. First are the read throughs with the assigned
editor, to make sure it’s as sound as possible.
Then it goes to the Senior editor for a yea or nay, and then off to line
editors who basically are editors that read your stuff line by line marking any
grammatical, spelling or continuity problems.
Then it goes through one more round called proofing, making sure any
facts are true, double checking the line editors, and whatever else the
proofing round does. Yes, the editing
process can be hellacious, but take it as a learning curve for the next
Self publishing can be very expensive for the author because
you’ll be the one buying everything you need, including the printing of your
book. When a novel is accepted by a
publishing house, no money is fronted by the author. The house provides everything, including all
the ISBN numbers and the translations into all the ebook formats like Kindle
and Nook. Also, be wary of the
self-publishing house that say they will market you. Even I, through two small press houses, have
to market myself. It’s hard, long, and
frustrating work getting your name out in the internet social media circus.
10 Random facts about me by Beth D. Carter
1) I co-wrote a country song with a dear friend titled
“Don’t Talk About Luv” that’s on his second album, Native Son.
2) I attended the Primetime Emmy Awards in 2001 and walked
down the red carpet.
3) I’m a complete sci-fi geek. I’ve sat on David Prowse’s
lap. And my wedding anniversary is May the Fourth….
4) My middle name, Delene, is my Aunt’s middle name, even
though my mom swears she never heard the name before.
5) I’m starting up a podcast about all things in the romance
6) I never went to my own Prom.
7) I got to explore the Star Trek Voyager set during the
episode "Vis à Vis".
8) I’ve traveled from Dover England to Calais France by both
ferry and Eurotunnel.
9) I’ve visited New Zealand, Australia, Sweden, Finland,
England, France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland,
Liechtenstein, Italy, Monoco, Spain, and the Vatican.
10) My favorite food is seafood.
“You owe me a lot of money, Miss Trent.”
Liza cast a quick glance at the man who spoke. The charm of
his Southern twang barely concealed his menace. He had introduced himself as
Mr. Reynolds, her travel benefactor, when the stagecoach had finally come to a
halt in Diablo Hills, Arizona. With the swarthy undertones of someone mean, the
lifelessness in his dark eyes hinted at a streak of cruelty. He stood tall,
very thin, and dressed impeccably in silk brocade pinstripe complete with a top
hat and cane.
Her face flushed, and she quickly looked back down at her
“I know it’s a terrible shame,” he went on, “having your
intended pass before the wedding, but business is business, Miss Trent.” He
paused to fuss with some imperceptible dust on his left sleeve, letting his
point sink in. Slowly, he lifted his eyes to meet hers. “Now you have business
Sweat gathered between her breasts. She shifted in her seat,
trying to find some comfort in the stifling room from the oppressive heat, but
she found little relief. With no windows, the room was nothing short of a
tinderbox from Hell, leaving her to think she might pass out at any minute.
Perhaps that might be best, considering.
“How much?” she whispered, barely able to speak past the
lump in her throat. The new life she envisioned rapidly faded from sight.
“Well, let’s see, there’s the cost of your coach ticket, the
chaperone services of Mrs. Nambaker, your hotel fees, your food fees, and of
course, my fee of bringing you and your intended together. So total, Miss
Trent, your balance is five hundred dollars.”
Something heavy landed on her chest, and for a moment, she
struggled to breathe.
“Five hundred dollars?” she gasped. “I don’t have that much
“Well, then, I guess you’re in a pickle,” said Mr. Reynolds
She clasped her hands together tightly and focused on a
particularly large freckle near her left thumb, one of the thousand she must
have, and let her mind wander for a moment. When she had left Boston to become
the bride of a man she had never met, it had seemed all her money problems had
been solved. Upon her arrival, however, she had been informed her fiancé had
succumbed to heart trouble, bringing the nightmare of the past year to a
She blinked and jerked her gaze back to Mr. Reynolds. “I can
work,” she said. “I can clean. Wash clothes. Sew. I know how to crochet.”
Mocking amusement lit up Mr. Reynolds’s fathomless eyes.
“You could sew and wash and crochet for a hundred years and you’d still not be
able to repay all that you owe me. In fact, there is only one profession I can
think of that would repay the revenue I’ve invested in you. A job where your
services are best rendered on your back. Do you understand what I’m saying, Miss
She swallowed, her heart hammering heavily in her chest.
Yes, she knew exactly what he implied. The very reason why she was here now,
sitting in this hot, little room in the middle of nowhere Arizona, was because
she had been trying to escape just such a fate.
“As it happens,” he continued, satisfaction dripping in
every word, “I am in partnership with an establishment where you’d be able to
ply the working woman’s trade, per se. I believe such a match would be
advantageous to both of us, Miss Trent.” He bent down on one knee beside her
and fingered her strawberry red hair that lay limp from sweat and travel dust.
“You would certainly fetch a high price, my dear. Someone with your fair
coloring is rare amongst the harsh Arizona land.”
Then he licked her cheek, the slick tongue starting at the
corner of her mouth and traveling upward. Liza jerked her head away, and she
jumped from her seat, wiping furiously at the saliva coating her skin.
He rose from his kneeling position, smiling with satisfaction.
“You ply your trade well, Miss Trent, and perhaps we can work together in a
more intimate setting.”
“I’d rather die.”
About the Author
I began reading my mom’s Harlequin Presents in the fifth grade, and from the first story I knew I wanted to write romance novels. I like writing about the very ordinary girl thrust into extraordinary circumstances, so my heroines will probably never be lawyers, doctors or corporate highrollers. I try to write characters who aren't cookie cutters and push myself to write complicated situations that I have no idea how to resolve, forcing me to think outside the box. I love writing characters who are real, complex and full of flaws, heroes and heroines who find redemption through love.