Thursday, June 22, 2017

Kim Redford Shares Her Wonder Woman Collection

First off, I want to claim total and absolute innocence in the hundreds of Wonder Woman items, as well as comics, that made their way into my home over the years. Ha, you don’t believe in my innocence when it comes to Wonder Woman, do you? You might be right, so let me explain while you are looking at some photos of selections from my Wonder Woman collection..

Once upon a time, there was a fun event called the Dallas Fantasy Fair run by my good friend Larry Lankford. The DFF featured books, comics, collectibles, gaming, dealer room, and panels for writers and artists. I sort of accidentally washed up on that shore when invited to pontificate (like I actually knew much about anything, but I’m a writer, so . . .) on panels. Okay, that was all well and good, but everybody there collected something and insisted I must collect something. I’d always been a Wonder Woman (created by William Moulton Marston with artist Harry G. Peter in All Star Comics #8, 1941) fan, so the great WW seemed like a good choice.

And here’s where the innocence comes in. Collectors were horrified that I didn’t have much of a collection (well, I did have a few raggedy Wonder Woman comics), so they immediately began solving my problem. They found WW items at garage sales, flea markets, antique shops, estate sales, con dealer rooms, and who-knows-where, and then presented them to me at DFFs. I never knew what I’d see next because I had no idea there were all these terrific vintage items just waiting for a home—my home. 

About this time I began to feel like a real Wonder Woman collector, so I started amassing backlist titles, along with current ones, and new Wonder Woman action figures. I snagged the complete and fabulous Lynda Carter Wonder Woman television series (1975-1979) that is positively inspirational for all. 

And yet, my WW collection crew and I were greedy. We wanted Wonder Woman up on the big screen in her own live action film. Rumors about the much anticipated WW movie came and went, but they usually went bust. At one point, Josh Whedon stepped in to direct WW, so we were over the moon, thinking of the fine job he’d done with Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the television series (1997-2003), and Serenity, the film (2005). But, once more, we were let down when he dropped the project. About the time we were losing hope, here came news that Wonder Woman, the movie, was actually in the works. Could it be true? 

By now, you know the answer to that question. Yes! Well, we went to see Wonder Woman directed by Patty Jenkins (2017), and we just kept pinching ourselves to be sure we were actually viewing WW on the big screen. What can I say? It’d been a long wait, but well worth it—not just for us but for folks around the world. Wonder Woman broke all kinds of opening weekend records, and we weren’t in the least surprised at her big win. She’d won our hearts a long time ago.  

Kim Redford is an acclaimed, bestselling author of Western romance novels. She grew up in Texas with cowboys, cowgirls, horses, cattle, and rodeos for inspiration. She divides her time between homes in Texas and Oklahoma, where she’s a rescue cat wrangler and horseback rider—when she takes a break from her keyboard. Visit her at Kim Redford.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

What to Watch: Best Banter

What to Watch: Best Banter

One of my favorite parts of any good romance novel (whether it’s written by me or not) is the banter. Give me a sharp hero, a witty heroine, and 380 pages of verbal ping pong, and I’m a happy reader. Even all those gushy love scenes and high adrenaline plots don’t matter as long as there’s a playful bandying of words.

Of course, writing this kind of easy banter is hard work. It usually takes me several passes and lots of painstaking edits before I can achieve the perfect light-hearted note. It also takes research—which, for me, includes hours upon hours of watching movies and television. (I know. It’s a tough life, but someone has to do it.)

Some of the best lines of dialogue in pop culture were painstakingly written into the script (I’m looking at you, Gilmore Girls). Others arise from actors improving on the set (a skill I’m hugely envious of but will never master). Either way, I find that watching these movies and shows—oftentimes over and over again—is a great way to learn. If you want to brush up on your own banter skills, or if you’d simply like to enjoy some TV time that will keep you smiling, here are some suggestions.

·       Two Weeks Notice (or literally anything starring Hugh Grant except for Notting Hill because I hated that movie)
·       The Ref
·       Grosse Pointe Blank
·       Ocean’s Eleven (or Dirty Rotten Scoundrels or Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang or almost any crime/heist movie, really)
·       Firefly
·       The Princess Bride
·       Party Down
·       It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
·       Philadelphia Story (I guess Philadelphia is pretty hilarious)
·       Archer
·       It Happened One Night
·       Bringing Up Baby
·       The American President
·       Community
·       Iron Man
·       Crazy, Stupid, Love (again, I’m going to go out on a limb and say anything starring Emma Stone…and adding Ryan Gosling into the mix doesn’t hurt)
·       The West Wing
·       Gilmore Girls

I’m sure I’m missing some good ones, but these are the top banter picks that come to my mind. 

…what about you? Are there any must-watch TV shows or movies that you’d add?




Tamara Morgan is the author of thirteen contemporary comedy romances and the new Penelope Blue series. Her books combine fast-paced antics and humor with heartfelt sentiment, and have been described as both “utterly unconventional and wonderfully smart.” Her debut novel was chosen as the Smart Bitches Trashy Books book club pick in April of 2012, and her books have since gone on to receive two starred reviews from Library Journal and three Romantic Times Magazine Top Picks, one of which was nominated in the 2014 RT Reviewers' Choice Awards in the Contemporary Love & Laughter category. 

Visit Tamara online at:

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

By Her Touch by Adriana Anders out on Audio Today!

The Audiobook for By Her Touch, starring Wendy Tremont King is out from Tantor Audio today! (I can't stop staring at the cover!)

Title: By Her Touch
Series: Blank Canvas
Author: Adriana Anders
Audio out: June 20, 2017
Buy Now

About By Her Touch:
Clay left the Sultans biker gang a changed man. Its ringleaders may be awaiting trial, but he wears the memory of his time in that hell tattooed across his skin. He figures he doesn't have space in his messed-up life for anything gentle?not now, maybe not ever.

Besides, what woman could possibly want the man he's become?

Dr. Georgette Hadley is drawn to the damaged stranger's pain, intimidated but intrigued by the warmth that lies beneath Clay's frightening exterior. She thrills at the way he gentles at her touch...and under his rough hands, she burns with a passion she never thought she'd know.

But when the Sultans return looking for revenge, Georgette finds herself drawn into the dirty underbelly of a life forged in violence...that not even her touch may be able to heal.

Praise for By Her Touch:
"Anders has created wonderful variations on the beauty and the beast theme and the damsel-in-distress trope, a greatly tormented hero, and a powerful mix of menace and romance." ―Booklist, Starred Review

"Gripping, emotionally satisfying." - Publishers Weekly

Buy Now


ADRIANA ANDERS has acted and sung, slung cocktails and corrected copy. She’s worked for start-ups, multinationals and small nonprofits, but it wasn’t until she returned to her first love—writing romance—that she finally felt like she’d come home. Today, she resides with her tall French husband, two small children and fat French cat in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, where she writes the dark, gritty, emotional love stories of her heart.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Impossible simultaneity: only fun in science fiction

A long time ago in a genre far, far away, I did an all-day intensive story critique/workshop/gauntlet thingy that pruned my confidence to a nub and crammed my aspiring-writer noggin with way more information than I could process at the time. I do not recommend such thingies.

Absolutely okay for Christina Dodd's heroine in
 Castles in the Air to do three manual things at
once because she actually has three arms.
(Kidding. And Christina Dodd is amazing
 and you should read her.)
However, over the years I’ve unpacked all that info in chunks, and you know what? Those instructors really knew their sh…stuff. They taught me that a story with too many “was”es can put a reader to sleep and that eyes aren’t independent, willful organisms for most speciesjackwipe’s eyes didn’t drop to the heroine’s boobage, his gaze did, right? They taught me about the inadvisability of adverbs, the judicial use of similes, the need for a consistent point of view, and a gajillion other low-level craft bits that aren’t necessarily grammatical errors but, when handled badly, can certainly can make it hard for a reader to invest in a world or story.

One of those things was impossible simultaneity.

Now, I don’t meant to spin up a physics topic here or discuss relativity of simultaneity, so if that’s what you’re noodling with in a sci-fi sort of way, please go on about your business (and link me to your story down in the comments, please, because it’s totally up my reader-alley). Rather, what I mean to point out is when sentence structure implies two things are happening at the same time when physically they cannot (or attempting to do so would create a weird visual). For instance:

Shrugging off her coat, she tossed her purse on the table and flicked on the lights.

If nothing about that sentence seems odd, chances are you are in fact writing/reading science fiction and the character most prominently lodged in your brain is a multi-armed alien. I’m cool with that.

What I’m not cool with is a regular two-armed human earthling tugging coat sleeves off her arms whilst one arm is also purse flinging and the other is light switch flipping. No one is that coordinated and how many arms does this person have? Similarly, I can’t figure how these would work:

...he said, taking a sip of his whiskey.

Sliding off her motorcycle, she tugged her skirt down.

Rubbing the weariness from his eyes, he saw... 
The worst part is that I see these kinds of things all the time in books. Maybe they don't get tidied up because they aren’t dangling modifiers, per se. They’re just dangling logic.

Now, I’m not claiming I’ve never committed every vile sin of writing. I have and continue to do so. So, no judgment! However, if you’re writing and want to avoid impossible simultaneity, a quick trick is to search the doc for “ing ” (the extra space after the g trims the search results at little) and click through. An ing-pass on your manuscript may also reveal dangling participles and other potential embarrassments.

If you’re not a writer but read lots and never noticed impossible simultaneity before, I have bad news. You’re probably going to notice it fairly often now.


Sort of. (Except, not really. Misery loves company.)

p.s. – Check out the Turkey City Lexicon for lots and lots of things you never knew writers were doing wrong. (Scroll down to find "Not Simultaneous.") I found the document simultaneously enlightening and horrifying and humiliating and helpful.

Vivien Jackson writes stories with robots, pixies, and down-home salacious kissery. Wanted and Wired, first in her Tether cyberpunk romance series, is available now. Get news and sneak peeks on the web at or sign up for her newsletter to have tidbits delivered right to your email.

Friday, June 16, 2017

I Like that Cadaver (by Asa Maria Bradley)

If you've ever hit the Google Translate button to read a website that was published in a non-English language, then you know how crazy the results can be.

When I needed a few Spanish phrases in Viking Warrior Rebel, I first used an online translator. But after running the result through a different translator back to English--and laughing hysterically for a while--I decided I better ask a real person. And even then I did a reverse translation through a second real person. The results were great and I'll rely on my Spanish-speaking friends again, I'm sure.

Lately however, I've had to relate on Google Translate to email with some Russian physics professors. As part of a Women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) program, they came to visit my college and we communicated through a real-person translator. I've visited Russia twice, but all I managed to pick up in terms of language was how to say "ice cream" and "peace." Not very useful when it comes to talking about science theories. During their visit, I really connected with two of the Russian professors and so we've been emailing each other about cool things to do in the classroom and how to encourage girls to choose science courses.

It's a slow but fun process of trying to parse out what my new friends really meant from the crazy sentence structures I get from Google. And I'm sure my peers over in Saint Petersburg are having some very good laughs when reading the mangled Russian version of my original English messages.

So far though, the results have not been as crazy as what The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon experienced when running song lyrics through Google Translate. Enjoy! :-)

~            ~            ~

Asa Maria Bradley grew up in Sweden surrounded by archaeology and history steeped in Norse mythology, which inspired her sexy modern-day Viking series. She now lives in the Pacific Northwest with a British husband and a rescue dog of indeterminate breed. Booklist attributed her writing with “nonstop action, satisfying romantic encounters, and intriguing world building.” Her debut book, Viking Warrior Rising, was a 2016 double RITA finalist and the follow-up, Viking Warrior Rebel, is a Romantic Times Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice Award Nominee and a Booksellers Best Award finalist. Romantic Times Book Reviews described the book as “filled with action and passion from the first page until the last.”

Subscribe to her newsletter:

Thursday, June 15, 2017


Hi Everyone! I'm very happy to announce that Book #1 of my Men of Legend series -- TO LOVE A TEXAS RANGER is only $1.25 on Amazon and $1.99 at B&N and Kobo. The sale only lasts until Monday, June 19, 2017 so hurry before it goes up.

I knew from the moment Sam Legend sauntered onto the page that he was going to be one of largest and unique characters I've ever created. He's bold and tough and will ride through hell in pursuit of an outlaw. Sam doesn't back down from anyone...except the beautiful Sierra Hunt.

In Texas some Legends are born, some are made, and some are created by destiny.

Sam is the youngest of Stoker Legend's three boys and he's helped to scrawl their name across the rugged Texas land.  When Sierra Hunt falls into his lap, he knows he's bitten off far more than he chew.

Gravely injured on the trail of a notorious criminal, Texas Ranger Sam Legend boards a train bound for his family ranch to recuperate…only to find himself locked in battle to save a desperate woman on the run. Determined to rescue the beautiful Sierra, Sam recruits an unlikely ally. But can he trust the mysterious gunslinger to fight at his side?

Sam is shocked to discover his new ally is not only an outlaw, but his half-brother he knew nothing about. Torn between loyalty to his job and love of his family, Sam goes reeling straight into Sierra’s arms. Yet just as the walls around his battered heart begin to crumble, Sierra is stolen away. Sam will risk anything to save her—his life, his badge, his very soul—knowing that some bonds are stronger than the law…and some legends were born to be told.

“Broday’s Westerns always captivate.” —RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars

“One of the best historical western authors.” —Fresh Fiction

“Poignant, dramatic and packed with action and mystery.” —Addicted to Romance 

The state of Texas has 268,597 square miles so it’s no wonder we have huge ranches. Some are simply too enormous to comprehend. So I had no trouble setting a big ranch here for my latest Men of Legend series. My fictional Lone Star Ranch is a little on the puny side at 480,000 acres. I modeled it to some degree after the Waggoner Ranch which was 510,000 acres in 1954. The Waggoner Ranch also fit the location of mine in North Texas, not far from the Red River.

The largest ranch in the world in 1880 was the XIT Ranch (stands for Ten in Texas) at a whopping three million acres and covered practically all of West Texas and the Panhandle. To put this in perspective, that’s roughly 4,687 square miles. Just think how long it would take to ride over by horseback.

Book #2 of this series - The Heart of a Texas Cowboy came out last month (May 2017.) And Book #3 To Marry a Texas Outlaw - will release this November. 

Here are the links for TO LOVE A TEXAS RANGER:


Have you ever been to a working ranch or a dude ranch? If so, what did you most like about it?

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

There is Nothing Like a Dog

In my latest book Nothing Like a Duke a dog named Plato plays an integral role. From the first pages, when Plato is rescued by the hero, he makes his presence felt, occasionally steering human characters just where they need to be. In my mind he looks something like this.

I trace my enjoyment of dogs as fictional characters back to a few different sources. I was obsessed with Sherlock Holmes from a young age, reading my omnibus edition over and over. And The Hound of the Baskervilles was one of my favorite installments. The thrill of that famous sentence – “Mr. Holmes, they were the footprints of a gigantic hound!” At the same time, I discovered a very different canine in an ancient copy of Lad: A Dog in my childhood home. How I wept over that story! 

TV offered Rin Tin Tin and Lassie – dogs with an uncanny knack for rescue. But I have to say the books were more important for me. As years passed, I found other reading matter that featured dogs. Here are some of my favorites.
There’s no doubt that Nora Roberts likes dogs. I loved The Search, in which the hero and heroine bond over the training of an out-of-control puppy named Jaws. The heroine also trains search and rescue dogs and has three charming dogs of her own. These canines are real characters who affect the suspenseful outcome of the story.
Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden series features a miraculous canine, a fit companion for a paranormal detective. Mouse the Tibetan temple dog sometimes has a nimbus of pale blue light. His bark can free people from enchanted sleep, and he seems to possess endurance and healing ability far beyond mortal dogs. He’s not bad with demons either. Woof!
I’m also a fan of Rita Mae Brown’s Mrs. Murphy mystery series featuring Mary Minor Haristeen, a postmistress, and her menagerie. The animals carry on conversations in these books, often bemoaning the limitations of their human companions. They also have their own hierarchies and rivalries. I love it. Tee Tucker the dog is more of a foil or straight man to the cats here, but he’s still quite charming. Of course I love cat characters, too – but that’s another list.
Finally, there’s Asta in The Thin Man books and movies about Nick and Nora Charles. The terrier made an important contribution to these frothy tales. Sometimes it almost seems he joins in the couple’s signature witty banter. Nora Roberts' In Death series pays homage to Nick and Nora.

In short, for some stories, there’s nothing like a dog to liven things up. Do you have favorite dog characters?

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