The Quirky Ladies is a group of eclectic (and dare I say quirky?) ladies who are passionate about writing romantic fiction. All types of romantic fiction...paranormal, fantasy, historical, erotic and contemporary. Bring it on!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Character Interview and Contest for Bound Odyssey

Hey folks, I've invited Dalton Diaz to pop over to my blog to interview Roman Nash, one of the heroes from my new release BOUND ODYSSEY out at Ellora's Cave. And boy did she throw fantastic, if tough questions his way. Luckily, Roman can handle them.

Please visit. There's a contest to win a yummy vanilla scented massage candle. Until I found it in the store, I hadn't even known what a massage candle was (grin).

I'd love for you to meet Roman, he's quite the devil. Go to:



Monday, October 26, 2009

The Pimp Room

Okay, seriously, let's say you are designing a corporate hotel and have to come up with a design scheme. Dark leather sofas? Neutral colors? Non-threatening art work? Boring ass lounge area with beer nuts and wood paneling? Well, if you are the Renaissance Woodbridge Hotel in Iselin, NJ, you might actually decide to go with a funky 70s-inspired bizarre mix of weirdness that includes giant chessboards, 6 foot long red beaded chandeliers, white fuzzy chairs sized for Vikings, and of course, a pimp room. Yes folks, didn't you know that corporate America has been jonesing for a lounge with a disco ball, lava lamps, sequined walls, leopard skin throw pillows and of course love bead curtains. Let's just say the decor at the Woodbridge Hotel, site for the New Jersey RWA conference this past weekend, was....well....extremely unique. Extremely. Unique. And I've got the photos to prove it....

Here is the disco ball:

Here is the lava lamp:

Here we are lounging in the pimp room:
from left to right, Frances Stockton, Victoria Morgan, Kate Macarthur, Michelle Picard, Heather Laskowski, and Tara Truesdale.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Finally! It's happened. Release day for BOUND ODYSSEY at Ellora's Cave. I'm dying for everyone to meet Mira, Jace and Roman, my three protagonists. I fell in love with them from almost the first, and consequently, they fell in love with each other. Please visit my blog today to check out my post on the book. I'll be running a contest there as well. This book is for mature audiences, so no one under 18 need go any further. Heck, I've told my grandmother, who insists she wants to read the book, that she in fact may be too young to read it (grin). Although I'm only slightly prejudiced, let me say that this book is all that. Please check it out, check out my website at, and join my newsletter. The link to join is available on my website. I can be found on Facebook, Goodreads, and Twitter as well.

And for more fun, Dalton Diaz is planning to interview Roman on the Quirky blog next week on Tuesday. He's a kick in the pants, so plan to stop by. He'll probably be running a contest of his own that day.

Remember, safe, sane and consensual. Be well and join me in my personal happy dance about the release.


Friday, October 16, 2009


My book cover got released today at Ellora's Cave. Can you guess a bit about the subject matter from the lovely crop my heroine is wielding? (LOL) And my brand new website went live today. Visit me at
BOUND ODYSSEY can be purchased as of 10/23/09, next Friday. Stay tuned for the date for my release party both here and on my blog at:

Monday, October 12, 2009


Although I'm sticking in my own picture at the top of my "What's So Quirky About" blog, I thought I'd add a picture of the hero in my current work in progress above to spice it up. Two for the price of one. Kyle was the vampire character star of the short lived TV series called Blood Ties based on the kick-ass novels of Tanya Huff.
So now, like the others, I'll wow you with a list of peculiar, completely unasked for minutia from my life. Here it goes:

-Wrote a poem in fifth grade about capybaras, the largest member of the rodent family, and a sure first sign of literary genius.

-Pet two baby Bengal tiger cubs at eight years old (without losing my fingers).

-Produced and narrated a radio show about Possums including a segment recorded live during a release from captivity into the wild. Not so riveting as the medium of sound does not work well with Possums who don't make loud noises. (I'm sensing an animal trend here, ya think?)

-Named her first tropical fish after Aayla and Jondalar, the protagonists of Jane Auel's Clan of the Cave Bear series.

-Played trombone (badly) her freshman year of high school. And aren't we all glad I stopped after that?

-Wrote, produced and video taped a short play about WWII air force veterans. (Definitely not an instance of "write what you know.")

-Was the only teenager on a six week volunteer summer program for adolescents to Antigua that did not take the trip because of the lack of a drinking age on the island. Go figure.

-Was about the only soul who graduated from the University of Michigan who saw just two football games the entire four years I attended.

-Was asked to pose as a model wearing only a toga for a photography major at college because I had the classic roman nose for the shot. (No, this wasn't a twisted pick-up line. The photographer was female.)

-Participated in a riot in Ann Arbor the year when Hash Bash and a Grateful Dead concert intersected with U of M's team winning the NCAA championship. (No, I didn't turn over any vehicles or smash any windows. The police don't monitor these blogs, do they?)

-Got my Masters in Social Work after being warned by the five other social workers in my family that I might want to go into another line of work.

-Was tricked by my husband, who planned our honeymoon, when he told me we were going to London, but surprised me by taking me to Italy instead. Apparently I was the only person in the universe who had considered it reasonable to be flying to London from the east coast of the US via a change of planes in Germany. Don't worry, my husband told me our true destination when we arrived in Germany and I tried to ask for the connecting gate to London.

Okay, quirky facts done.
SHAMELESS PLUG: Remember, RULING EDEN will be released soon at Crescent Moon Press. Probably sometime in late October. It will be available in e format and then, a month or so later, available for order in print copy from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Now back to your regularly scheduled program.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Zora Stout! Zora, you've won Ella's contest and the e copy of Scent of Cin. Congratulations! Ella will be in contact.
And thank you everybody for stopping by. I loved having Ella join us.
Don't forget to visit her at

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


The Quirky Ladies would like to welcome Ella Drake to the blog today to be interviewed about her latest release, Scent of Cin out from Cobblestone Press just this past October 2nd.

Ella is the author of dark paranormal, futuristic and science fiction romance and, let me tell you, her stories are hot. I know, because I've been lucky enough to critique parts of them. Her bio tells us that as a child she read books under her covers with a flashlight and discovered a special love of elves, dragons and knights. Now that she's found her own knight in shining armor and happily ever after, she loves to write tales of fantasy, hot enough to scorch the sheets. No flashlight needed.

Enough with introductions, let me get on to welcoming Ella, who is offering one random commenter to this interview a chance to win a digital copy of Scent of Cin.

Michelle: Hey Ella. Welcome to the Quirky Ladies. First off, tell us about your recent release, Scent of Cin, and what inspired it.

Ella: Scent of Cin is about a female detective faced with death and forced to partner with a creature she's sworn to kill. The idea from this story came from a visual I had from out of the blue--a woman in a red teddy coming back from the dead. Now that's unusual for two reasons. First, I don't usually have random pictures in my head that spark a story. I also don't usually go around dreaming about women in red teddies.

MP: LOL! Obviously the shock of it was enough to start the Muse flowing. So, what was your biggest challenge writing this story? Did your characters ever misbehave as you tried to write them?

ED: My biggest challenge was getting clothes onto Cin and Vedo, the heroine and hero. Their clothes were done away with in the first scene. I gave up and had to let Cin be mostly naked. As tough a character as she is, she didn't seem to care.

MP: Sounds like one very secure woman. Your career has started off with a bang, with your first release last May of Wolf Bitten, the Scent of Cin story available now, and your upcoming releases of The Forbidden Chamber and Firestorm on E'Terra. What was the most fun to write?

ED: All of them. I did love writing them all. But if I had to pick the one that was most fun, it'd be Firestorm on E'Terra. Firestorm is a rush. It reads a bit like a military SF, but with lots of romance thrown in. I enjoyed writing characters who spoke with such honesty and were out to save the world, for real.

MP: You write both paranormal romance and science fiction romance. What's the biggest difference for you between writing these two subgenres?

ED: The language flows a bit differently. The dialogue and motivations in SFR are more related to contemporary and romantic suspense than the fantasy world of paranormal romance. I also tend to write darker paranormal, so the atmosphere is a little heavier, and I find it more difficult to add moments of levity.

MP: What's next on your agenda? Anything in the works fans would love to hear about?

ED: I have another Science Fiction Romance, Caught in Silver, about a backwater-world sheriff who takes to the space lanes to rescue his long lost love. I'm revising it now and hope to send it out soon.

MP: Oooh, I've read bits of that one and it's fantastic. But I've been dying to know how you have been so blessed by the cover art gods. Scent of Cin's cover is gorgeous, and everyone must run to Ella's website and look at her two other available covers. They are just stunning. So tell me your secret. Do you have an altar to these gods set up in your home? Do you make daily sacrifices? And if you do, what sort of sacrifice works best?

ED: LOL. I have no idea! Maybe those chocolate chip cookies that disappear overnight? In all honesty, when I made the list of publishers I wanted to submit to, I checked out the covers. I think the art does matter, so I looked at current covers when I made my publisher wish list. After that, I got lucky.

MP: Finally, because we're the Quirky Ladies, can you share one quirky fact about yourself that readers probably don't know?

ED: I've ridden a mechanical bull, and I'm dying to ride one again. Anyone game?

But no matter what your answer, you can find me at: or follow me on twitter @lori_ella. Excerpts and more information about Scent of Cin is available at and Scent of Cin is available from Cobblestone Press at:

Don't forget, a random commenter will win a digital copy of Scent of Cin.

I'll leave you with this snippet, with Vedo and Cin in his car, surrounded by hellions, the lapdogs of the demon queen:

(Excerpt from Scent of Cin)

"Damn. I don't have my taser or my sword," Cin said, her voice calm despite the threat.

Taser to immobilize them temporarily. Sword to decapitate them permanently. He'd seen her skill with the sword, and it was a chilling sight. Chilling not being a comfortable feeling for him, he wasn't disappointed she didn't have her sword. Of course, she shouldn't be defenseless, and he'd had them retrieved after she'd been ambushed.

"I have your weapons in the trunk."

She leaned into him and gave him a scorching kiss. Hot and greedy, her tongue entered his mouth. After too short a moment, she pulled back.

"You do have your uses," she said and gripped her knees as if to keep her hands from him.

Maybe he should keep her sword around if it got him this kind of reaction. The scalding waves that radiated from his chest outweighed any amount of chill.

The Hellions smelled Cin, blatant erections undeniable proof. They surrounded the Jag, snuffling. The woman in question remained calm, used to this behavior, but it made his skin crawl. His temper flared, and he thought he heard a growl. Impossible. He'd learned long ago to keep his feral nature in check. Cin flicked an amused glance his way, and the spiking heat in the small space proved he'd lost control. He'd sunk to the level of the beasts outside the car.

He'd growled.


I'm thinking it's probably good that you've changed me in some way, or I'd be toast with the sparks you're putting off over there."


"More to talk about later," she mumbled, but he heard.

He reached behind him in the small cab of the car. Customized for his tall frame, his seat sat all the way back to the useless back bench. He flipped the back cushion down, reached into the trunk, and pulled out the sword and taser. Pushing them into her capable hands, he trusted she'd put them to good use. He shoved open his door, leaving her his parting comment.

"These mutts can't be far from the bitch. Let's take them down."

MP: Excellent scene. Thanks for stopping by Ella. And readers, remember to leave a comment to win her book.

Monday, October 5, 2009

What's So Quirky About Kate Macarthur?

Well, some of the other Quirks started out their "What's so Quirky" posts with a picture of a hot man. So, here's my submission in the Quirky Hot Man Hall of Fame:

Seriously, I could look at this guy all day. Among my Quirky Facts, you will learn that I actually go to meet George Clooney, on the set of ER, not two weeks after he was named Sexiest Man of the Year by People Magazine. He was just as hot in person (though not as tall) and genuinely nice, even to a complete stranger like me. We had a brief but memorable conversation, wherein I advised him on how to get his English Bulldog, Wally(?), to stop vomiting all over his house. I hope it worked.

Anway, here are some more Quirky Facts about Kate Macarthur...

  • Has a Masters in International Law & Organizations
  • First job was as a shoe shine

  • Has a hairless Chinese Crested dog (yes, one of those - I'll post pictures)

  • Was a Varsity Cheerleader (God help me - I'll never post pictures)

  • Once found herself trapped in her house with a burglar

  • Got to spin on the same hill in Austria as Julie Andrews in the Sound of Music

  • Speaks Spanish

  • Lived in Washington DC for 5 years

  • Met her husband at a Curling Club (while curling)

  • Worked as a "brusher-bather" at a pet grooming shop

  • Met George Clooney (and didn't embarrass myself - but it was a near thing!)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

What's So Quirky About Penny Watson?

Me, quirky? I have no problem embracing my inner quirkiness! So, here's my list....

  • Trained an Amazon River dolphin as a high school student.
  • Took piano lessons for 6 years at Carnegie Mellon with a strict Russian concert pianist.
  • Has a master's degree in turfgrass science (yes, there is a science to turfgrass!).
  • Is distantly related to the weird lady (Zelda Rubinstein) in Poltergist who says..."Carole Anne, do not go into the light...."
  • Started the lacrosse club at Vassar College (which is now a varsity team).
  • Published a paper in the Journal of Marine Biology titled Nitrate Reductase Activity in Zostera marina.
  • Tie-dyed the headmaster's dog the night before graduation while working at a boarding school in New Hampshire.
  • Flew for 24 hours with a newly adopted baby from the Philippines who had never been in a car seat (good times!).
  • Met my husband in organic chemistry lab.
  • Travelled to Russia, Switzerland, France, Germany, Italy and Denmark.
  • Just met Ming Tsai at Blue Ginger and had a nice chat about college reunions! (Okay, Vicki, so it wasn't Hugh Jackman...I'll bet Ming could cook Hugh under the table!).
I think if you asked my kids, they could give you some additional quirks about my personality, but let's just skip that!

I'm super excited today because I just got my first review for Sweet Inspiration, my debut novel which will be released on 12-02-09 by The Wild Rose Press. Here's a snippet from Phoebe Jordan, Romance Readers and Writers....

"Penny Watson delivers an exciting and magical debut novel that will have you falling in love with the Klaus family from the very beginning, and will not let you go even after the story has ended. I look forward to all of Penny Watson's future books, especially the next four books in her Klaus Brothers Series."

rating: 4.5/5

Yippee! Can't wait for Christmas!
Penny Watson