Thursday, December 31, 2009

Out with the Old, In with the New

I decided to get busy on the last day of 2009. I started off by printing out the two novels I just finished penning and edited one while cleaning my bedroom. I have always been a multi-tasking type of person. Sometimes this works out real well, but sometimes I fail to complete both projects because the day ends. So far I have cleaned the bathroom, mopped under my bed, washed my clothes, packed up my old comforter and drapes and replaced them with new replacements. Right now I’m putting my shoes into one of those under-the-bed space saving shoe organizers. I’ve seen it on television hundreds of times and I finally broke down and purchased one a couple of weeks ago. Don’t believe the hype. The shoes don’t fit in as neatly as they do on television. Heck, it even surprised me that I owned twelve pairs of shoes. I’m not much of a shopper and I don’t see the need to spend a fortune on shoes that I’ll only wear maybe once. I did manage to find a pair of boots I purchased last year. It’s winter again; maybe I’ll get a chance to wear them. They don’t fit into the bag so I’ll still have one shoe box hanging out in my closet. Okay, so I zipped up the bag and pushed it under the bed. Time to go on to something else.

The doorbell rang just as soon as I typed the period. It was the lawn man coming to check out my side yard. It needs a cutting and a cleaning. The side yard has been a mess for a couple of years since some contractors just left drywall out there. Rain and time has made it too heavy for one person to move. My boyfriend recommended him. Yeah, he mentioned it about a month ago and didn’t call beforehand to let me know that the man was coming. My hair is all over my head and I’m covered in dust from cleaning. Talking about making a bad first impression. Normally I wouldn’t care about what other people think of me, but since it’s one of his friends there’s a strong possibility that the two of us will meet again at some social function. The funny thing about this entire situation is that my boyfriend and three grown sons can go out and clean the yard. The problem…they’re all too damn lazy. The man’s a nag. Nope, he won’t be starring in any of my romance novels.

So I’m back to cleaning and I’m watching this countdown on BET. I’m probably going to change the channel since I don’t recognize any of these groups or singers. Football, basketball and baseball. Nope, nope and nope. Next channel. Reality shows, soap operas and Spongebob. Nope, nope and nope. House Hunters International. Bingo. I put down the remote and go on to my next project. I’m always looking for someplace to relocate in case New Orleans gets flooded off the map. I probably won’t be leaving the country but it amazes me the type of money people spend on housing. Watching this type of show also gives me idea for places to set my story in. The next one is going to be set in Argentina.

I wished I had a bigger closet. I have so much stuff crammed inside that little room it’s suffocating. I might not have a lot of shoes but I have about a zillion canvas bags and tee-shirts. I tote a canvas bag to work everyday. It comes in handy for carrying books and tablets and magazines and pens…you know writer stuff. The disadvantage of carrying a tote bag everyday, I tend to pile other things inside of them like empty gum wrappers, tissue, receipts and anything I need to bring home with me. I have every intention of filing the receipts and throwing away all the trash, but it doesn’t happen as often as I like, and it’s probably not going to happen today. It will probably be a next month project when I have the time. Right now I need to organize my anime collection. It’s getting pretty extensive. I’m trying to find an affordable locking glass case to display them in, but I haven’t found one that I like. My main goal today is to store away the ones I’ve recently viewed. Goal, I like that word. It’s the end of the year and one of my goals is not to spend so much money on anime.

Next goal…do not have so many business cards made. Life changes and now you’re stuck with a lot of outdated stuff. I plan to attend about two writing conference in 2010. I don’t think I’ll meet enough people to pass out a thousand cards. My information has changed so I’ll just buy the minimum. Okay, one trash bag full. I have to walk into the kitchen to get another one. I stopped to warm me a bowl of chili along the way. I’ve got about an hour or so left before I have to make dinner. I’m on babysitting detail tonight. While most of my friends will be out drinking and celebrating the New Year, I’ll be trapped in a house with four kids under five. Lucky for me I don’t drink.

New goal for 2010 – Find my daughter-in-law full time 8 to 5 employment. I love my kids and my grandchildren dearly but I have a life. For the last six months I have been watching babies three or four nights a week. I barely get in from work and they’re there screaming for Spagettios or fighting over toys. Those are the longest three and a half hours of my life that I could be putting to better use like rescuing one of my heroines or sleeping. Next goal, get my grown children out of my house. It’s been nearly five years since Hurricane Katrina displaced everyone. Time for them to spread their wings again and leave the nest. This includes the youngest one who wants to move to Atlanta. Go, mama will be fine. Send me a postcard every now and then. Having all these people in my house plays havoc on my private live. No wonder my boyfriend is so naggy. He has to share me with a lot of people, including publishers and editors.

Oh, well if you haven’t figure out the subject of this blog by now it’s setting goals for 2010. Someone once told me how you end the old year is what you’ll be doing in the New Year. Hopefully I won’t be still cleaning at the stroke of midnight. My last year’s goal was to get organized. I have really met it but it’s a little better now than it was. One of my goals was to clean and organize my desk. I’ve done that a couple of times but right now it looks like a disaster zone.

Okay my back hurts. That’s just nature’s way of telling me it’s time to stop the heavy work for the day. Rome wasn’t built in a day and what good is the New Year if it finds me flat on my back with slipped disc?

Happy New Year

Imari Jade

Monday, December 28, 2009

Review - Charmed and Dangerous

Review – Charmed and Dangerous by Candace Havens

I was halfway through Ms. Haven’s third book when I realized that it was the third book in a series so I immediately went to Barnes and Noble and ordered book one, entitled Charmed and Dangerous because I just had to find out how this story began.

Bronwyn is a beautiful and sexy high witch with some amazing kick-ass powers, who uses her gifts to protect a British Prime Minister. Bronwyn doesn’t like mixing business with pleasure but handsome men are coming out of the woodworks as she travels to far away and exotic countries with her charge. Back home in Sweet, Texas she meets Doctor Sam, a warlock whom she doesn’t want to form a relationship with since she does not like warlocks, but she can’t deny the chemistry between them. She jets off to Norway with the Prime Minister and meets Sheik Azir. He’s tall and gorgeous with dark hair and deep brown eyes. He’s also rich and does not hesitate to provide Bronwyn with everything she needs once she decides to take him under her protection. There’s chemistry between the two of them too but she does not have time to worry about feelings at the moment since someone is trying to kill the Prime Minister and the Sheik. It doesn’t help matters much that someone is also trying to kill her. Bronwyn finds herself caught between a rock and a hard place fighting off warlocks and handsome men, while trying to help her ghostly relative Darby get back her true love.

Bronwyn has a host of magical friends who come to her aid, a female cat named Casper who hates her, and she can pilot a jet. What more can a girl ask for?

I found the book fun and refreshing and I love the way Ms. Havens uses comments to set the upcoming events at the beginning of each new scene. The book has a fast pace but Ms. Havens doesn't leave you hanging. It’s a page-turner that makes you want to know what happens next to Bronwyn just to see how she’s going to get herself out of it. I give this novel five Fleur-de-lis for excellence.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I overslept this morning. This is not the norm for me. For some reason my alarm clock did not go off. I should have known something when I got home yesterday and saw that it was already set. I did not remember if I did it or not. Probably the ghost.Fortunately I made it to work on time. Had a busy day. One person came in at the last minute and I had to do a little extra to get them out of the office. Stopped at the grocery for some apple pies and potatoes and then went home and began cooking. I washed and dried the kitchen curtains, fixed the cornbread dressing, baked macaroni and cheese, baked two sweet potato pies, one of the apple pies, order Dominos Pizza for tonight's dinner, took and shower and now I'm back working on my writing.
Great news I finished my NANOWRIMO with 51,000 words. Got a certificate and a badge to prove it. See Trent. I expect to see this on your website next year. Trent Kinsey is a writer friend of mine. I know he has been busy. His new book Who's the Blame is coming out soon. Check out his new cover. It's a damn good cover. Spooky. Maybe that's the person that reset my alarm clock. More on him later. Yes I do do blatant promotions for my friends, especially if they are good.
I'm watching Man vs Food.
I have to babysit tomorrow. I haven't figured out how I am going to do this since I have to bake a turkey, make dirty rice and gumbo, vegetables and probably bake a cake. Oh yeah, I also have to wash, mop and clean the rest of the house before my guests arrive. Notice I did not say write. For some reason my family think it is rude to write while I work or entertain them. I'll probably get up around five to write when everyone is asleep. I am working on six premises. I have these delusions that I can perform all these miracles in the next 24 hours.
My boyfriend called and said he might stop over later tonight. He has some movies he wants me to see. (No get your mind out of the gutter). I'm a vampire movie fanatic. No I have not seen New Moon yet (Go Team Jacob). Yeah I know he's the werewolf but I love those abs. In a nice way I told him to go to heck. When do I have time to watch a movie or entertain him? My feet hurt, I'm tired and I still have some networking to do before I close my eyes. Hopefully I can blog tomorrow night, but if I can't I'd like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Been busy lately getting a manuscript ready for Nanowrimo. It's day 20 and I reached 47,000 words. Should be finished today. Everything should be complete by the deadline 11/30/2009. It was not hard work but it took a lot of dedication to stick to producing 1,700 words a day. Somedays I did a little better than that, and then there was a couple of days that I really had to dig deep to get to 1,700 words. Looking forward to December so I can start editing the manuscript. Hope it is a winner.

New Release - Love Afar

New Release
Love Afar
On Sale Now
Publisher: Midnight Showcase Fiction
Buy Link:

Love Afar
Love often takes place in unusual and far away times and places – like in the present on a deserted island, or in the future on another plant, or even in the distant past.

Wet, Imari Jade
Seasick from the moment the ship leaves dock, Javonda Turlington faints at the feet of Will Simpson, a man who once tried to drown her.

Tasty Temptations, Mae Powers
Earthwoman Thela, meets two special men Jarik and Adaren. Both find her earthly beauty appealing to their alien male passions. All discover, out-of-this-world surprises.

The Warrior of Estfor, Ellen Margret
Lios, the bravest warrior for Estfor, is assigned to rescue, Princess Rettil. The task would have been simpler without the vexing presence of Princess Isol

New Release - Holidaty Treats

New Release
On Sale Now
Holiday Treats Digest
Publisher: Midnight Showcase Fiction

Buy Link:

Briskle’s Treasure, Mae Powers
On a quest to find a dragon relative a special holiday present, Briskle receives a wonderfully unexpected gift himself, from a lovely and unusual elf.

Unwrapped Gifts, Imari Jade
Naomi Davenport hates Christmas, but when Saint Peter sends three angels down to earth to show her what her life can be like, would it be enough to convince her to live?

An Angel’s Agony, Ellen Margret
Angels are sometimes assigned difficult tasks, Josiah was sent to terminate a Blackessencer. Falling in love in love with Kyna made it so hard.

Blood under the Mistletoe, Lisa M. Basso
When Southern belle Holly Devereux is kidnapped during Christmas, it’s up to Victor her vampire lover to help keep her alive, and be able to show her what’s truly in his heart.

Amy’s Gift – Nancy Pirri
How does efficient personal assistant, Amy Gallagher, gain the amorous attention of her boss, James Kent? By playing tricks – until they backfire on her and she finds herself definitely under his radar!

Kiss Under the Mistletoe – Jaden Sinclair
Lord Blythe Garrison had trouble trusting any lady, but when he meets beguiling Frenchwoman Adela Delacroix, he is taken aback by her boldness and the heat is on.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Finding Inspiration in Your Own Back Yard

Monday I left work early for a doctor’s appointment, traveling on the Little Easy bus to my second bus near Harrah’s Casino in New Orleans. I lifted my eyes off the page of the book I was reading and peered out of the window. Café Dumond in the French Quarters was crowded, horses and buggies lined up for blocks outside of the Saint Louis Cathedral waiting to take people on tours, the sidewalk merchants were out and busy, and there were people everywhere. The sun shone bright in the sky and it was a beautiful autumn day. But the first thought was why are all these people out having fun were and why aren’t they at work? My second thought was why in the heck aren’t you writing this down and using it as a scene in your story? I quickly took out my pen and pad and tried to write down everything I saw.

I have been living in this city all my life but I very seldom get out and visit all the great tourist attractions New Orleans is famous for. I ate my first muffalata in Houston, Texas during the Hurricane Katrina evacuation and it wasn’t until I returned that I learned that it was created in New Orleans. A couple of years ago I visited Ripley’s Believe It Or Not in Florida, and had to be told by one of the clerks that we also had a Ripley’s in New Orleans. I’ve been to Café Dumond once even though I pass it everyday going to and from work. I’ve never been to the Aquarium, IMAX or the Bug Museum. In the beginning I did write about New Orleans but it wasn’t easy writing about vampires in my home town when Anne Rice had done it so well.

When I was first began practicing my craft almost every how-to book warned not to go outside of your own back yard to find settings. I couldn’t drive; I didn’t like to travel, so that part was easy enough. But over the last couple of years I have been traveling. I like to ride the train or the Greyhound Bus. While riding I’m looking out of the windows trying to find that perfect scene or inspiration. When I visit some place interesting I like to incorporate it into my stories. I have written about New York, Egypt and hell, and I’ve never been to these places and probably never will, but I’ve done my research and try to capture a little aspects of the city to make the story believable.

The moral behind this story is take your head out of the book some times and see what’s going on around you. You’ll be surprised to find what you might be missing.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Promoting Your Work

I spent all day yesterday on-line promoting my recent 3 book releases at the Yahoo groups I’m affiliated with, on my blogs, and MySpace pages. Monday is a big promotion day at these places. It was 3pm when I finally finished. Today I promoted at the sites that allow promotions only on Tuesday and posted a few excerpts.

While I’m writing this I have my MySpace page open. I’m joining new friends and reading bulletins. (Too bad the Internet just went down.) That’s why I try to do two things at one time in case something like this happens.

The big question today, is this type of promoting necessary?

Of course it is. Not only is it a great way to generate sales but it’s also a great way to find out what other books are available for me to purchase.

Let’s face it, if you don’t promote no one is going to know that you’ve written a book. The best incentive…most of the time it’s free.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Setting the Mood

Setting the Mood for Romance

The lights are dimmed, the kids are napping, and it’s raining outside. What a perfect way to set the mood for writing.

So how do you set the mood for romance in your story? It all has to do with the five senses. Use them when you’re about to develop a love scene. As a romance writer we have to come up with different and unique places for romance to take place. Tried and true, the bedroom, the shower and in an airplane restroom has been done to death. Usually before the story is even told I try to come up with the when and where I want to sex to begin. Things to take into consideration:

The characters – what makes them unique? She’s a librarian and he likes to read. Love among the shelves in a place where silence is golden. Make it romantic and try to keep them quiet.
Character’s job – Is he a manager of a high-rise apartment building? Rooftop love? Don’t knock it until you tired it. Is she an actress or a ballerina? Why not be adventurous and steal a kiss behind the curtain.
Character’s hobbies – Is he into martial arts – On the floor of the dojo might be a perfect spot for a rendezvous. Does she like to sail? On the deck of a charter boat on the crystal clear ocean can set the mood for some interesting fun.
Think about your own experiences. Have you ever found yourself in a unique situation that you never dreamed you’d find yourself in a million years? Like in the backseat of a car or on a Ferris wheel with the man or woman you adore?

In Oasis, my characters are riding on a camel in the desert in Africa. One thing leads to another and the desert floor becomes the perfect make out spot.

The possibilities are endless. The bed is nice, but less face it, beds are for sleeping.

I also like to use sound to set the mood. The sound of rain makes me feel relaxed, so I try to put my characters in a relaxed state of mind when they’re dealing with each other. And depends on who I’m with, rain makes me very amorous. (Wink, wink, get the picture?)

Music – There’s not a better prop to use than music – Put in a CD or turn on the radio. Let the type of music you’re listening to set the mood of the story. If I’m listening to the Beatles while I’m writing, I’m in a lively mood and it reflects in the words I chose. If I’m listening to Michael Jackson, I’m in a youthful mood and my words tend to get a little giddy and joyous. If I’m listening to Tina Turner, I’m feeling empowered and my female characters are bound to be a little over the top. And when I’m listening to Barry White, it’s no hold’s bar. Clothes are flying off all over the place and my characters are getting down and dirty.

In this case music does not soothe the savage beast. It brings it to the surface.

Food – Oh my gosh. Food can really set the mood. Whipped cream, cherries, and chocolate syrup. (Yummy). Fried oysters and champagne (ooh), macaroni and cheese (?) Hey, young mothers need love too.

What goes through your head when you kiss someone who just drinks your favorite wine? Do you find icing on a spoon sexy when you see her eating it? Does a beer gut turn you on? Have you ever watched your best girl eat a banana split? The possibilities are endless.

Touch and Props – The single sexiest feeling in the world is having someone touch you. What do you like? Having your head, feet or back massaged. Getting your hair combed or styled by the opposite sex. What do you do with someone gently runs a feather up your spine or kiss your fingers or the back of your legs. It can be as simple as the heroine reaching up to remove his glass and innocently touches his eyebrow.

Like I said earlier, the possibilities are endless. So when you hit that roadblock, just think about what turns your own. Remember your characters are an extension of you. If you like it, I’m sure they will too.

Imari Jade

Saturday, October 10, 2009

New Release - Must Love Cats

Just in Time for Halloween

Must Love Cats

A Girl’s Best Friend, Imari Jade
Sportscaster Vince Carson found Veterinarian Aubrey Whelan beautiful, but could he build a relationship with a woman whose cat hated him and he was allergic to it?

Strange Critters, Mae Powers
Kara wasn’t quite prepared for what her spaced-out feline brought into her life; a strangely attractive alien who’d been inhabiting her cat’s body silently for years.

Purr, Ruth J. Hartman
Max’s son must work at Roxy’s cat shelter to complete his community service. Can they help Derek overcome his fear of cats and explore their growing feelings for each other?

The Cat in the (Wizard’s) Hat, Carla Cripps
As wizards go, Ash is the cat’s whiskers? Handsome, independently wealthy, he’s only got one challenge: convincing lovely Merriwen he’s the love of her life.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Having a pretty good day. Woke up this morning and watched the Biography Channel. They featured a few of my favorites, Donny and Marie Osmond, Smokey Robinson, and Davy Jones. If any of you out there don’t know who these people are, then you are much too young to be visiting this blog. (Smile).

I started out my writing day digging out disks (Floppies) that were stored away in a drawer. I had one of those hare-brained ideas to work on a novel featuring some characters I developed a couple of years ago. I felt it was time to get it out of the house and hit while the fire is hot. It’s about vampires and you know they’re what are currently happening. I’ve been working on a series for years. I call it the Southern Slayers. I think the vampires are hot and sexy and they’re dangerous. It took a while to find them since I have so many floppies. I’m still in the process of converting them to the latest storage/backup drive. Once I moved it over to the zip drive I printed out the information I had, three-holed punched it and put it in a binder. In the process I ran across another manuscript I’ve been working on about wolves. So now I’m sitting here working on both and trying to get them ready to submit.

I got on the Internet for a while to search for guidelines and Calls for Submissions. I picked up a couple of places to submit my work. I transferred the information to a Word Document that I update weekly.

I’m checking my email periodically. One of my editors emailed me a new review site, so I stopped what I was doing an email a copy of Death Takes a Holiday to be reviewed. That took a little while because I had to get a PDF copy ready. Now I’m taking a break and eating cookies.

I think the most remarkable thing about today is that I actually got a chance to do with I liked to do. I’m not baby-sitting at the moment. I better not say that too loud because the doorbell might ring. I should be doing something constructive like getting my stuff ready to go to work tomorrow but I’m not. I’m not cooking either. They can eat leftovers.

So how am I going to spend the rest of the evening? Working on these two books. I have the DVR programmed to tape Fox’s Sunday night line-up. Earlier today I did get a chance to watch a few episodes of Entourage and Supernatural. America’s Best Dance Crew is showing re-runs of last season’s shows. I’m listening and watching every now and then. Luckily I can do several things at one time. My main focus for tonight is to get the character outlines done and to get the scenes in order. Well I better get back to work, but first I have to get the cookie crumbs out of my bed.

Imari Jade

Friday, September 25, 2009

Thursday, September 24, 2009



My name is Imari Jade and welcome to my blog. Now that I have the introduction out of the way I guess I need to tell you a little about myself. I was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana where we eat red beans on Monday, make groceries on the weekend and where we don’t need a reason to throw a party. I have been writing professionally for many years, mostly articles about raising children and short stories. Then in 2004 I ventured into the world of romance. I don’t want to stereotype myself by saying that I just write contemporary romance. I like to dabble with different sub-genres like paranormal, interracial, African American, and I’ve also been known to write about religion and mythology. Some days I might be bogged down writing about a vampire seducing a very sexy woman, then my mind shifts gear and I start writing about a fallen angel whose soul needs saving. There are also times when I write on subjects about my less than normal children, my mischievous grandchildren, my 9 to 5 job or even about a man in my life. The great thing about being a writer is that we just love to write.

When I decided to do a blog I wondered what I would blog about. I decided that I would just write about my life and how my writing is going. I’ll admit now that I’m just like everyone else. I have good days and I have bad days. I don’t get as upset about receiving rejections as I used to and I still get excited when something is accepted like I did when I sold my first article.

I’ll also fill you in on how things are going in New Orleans. At the present we aren’t buried under water and the city is making a slow comeback but things are improving. I’m still in the process of putting my house back together. Progress is slow because I still have a house full of people. I am thankful that I did have a house to go back to.

I’m an avid reader, so a review or two are bound to show up every now and then. I love to read paranormal romance and historical romance. Two of my favorite writers are Laurell Hamilton and Charlaine Harris. Yes, I do watch True Blood and I’m waiting on the next Twilight movie. I enjoy watching Japanese anime and I go to sleep each night watching Adult Swim.

I plan to keep you up to date on what’s going on with my books, personal appearances, conferences, conventions and where I’m blogging. I’m a member of the Romance Writers of America, Epic, Passion Ink and several Yahoo groups. Right now I am currently working with three publishers, Midnight Showcase Fiction, Sugar and Spice Press and Carnal Desires Publishing. In 2010 I plan to venture out and try to get contracts with other publishing companies. I’m looking for that first big paperback contract. Wishful thinking, but still a goal I want to achieve.

Lastly, I consider myself a humorous. I can’t live where live or do with I do without a having a sense of humor. My characters are arrogant, opinionated and don’t take crap from anyone. So sit back and relax. Things are bound to get interesting.

Imari Jade