Thursday, July 2, 2015

WRITERS AND RACE

WRITERS AND RACE

The new Bradley Cooper/Emma Stone film, Aloha, has regenerated a long seated controversy over the whitewashing of Hollywood movies. Aloha, a movie filmed in Hawaii about the Hawaiian culture, has no Hawaiians in the cast except for a few very minor roles.
 
This history of this whitewashing goes back most notably to the 1931 film Charlie Chan Carries On starring Swedish actor Warner Oland as Chan. Oland had also played Fu Manchu in an earlier film. However, the practice of casting white actors in ethnic roles began much earlier.
 
My own experience with this phenomenon came when I was pitching a script I’d written about the first African-American military pilot, Eugene Jacques Bullard, nicknamed the Black Swallow of Death during his time flying with the Lafayette Escadrille in France. Now keep in mind, this is a true story. At the end of the pitch, the studio executive I was pitching asked – in all seriousness – if I could make the main character white.
 
The publishing industry has also been accused of whitewashing – portraying ethnic main characters on book covers using Caucasian features and very, very light skin tones.
 
Cultural icons of all sorts have also been subjected to this whitewashing
Why, for instance, is Jesus, a Jew born in the Middle East, almost always portrayed with extremely Caucasian features and very long hair? 
 
I recently found myself thinking about how much of this is consciously or unconsciously done, especially in the case of novelists. I recently finished the manuscript for my new book, Lie Catchers (due for publication in August by Pro Se). The book is fiction, but very much based on my experiences as a detective and interrogator with the Los Angeles Police Department.
 
I was surprised with myself when about three quarters of the way through the first draft, I realized all my fictional cops were white and most of my fictional suspects ethnic. Gender balance was there in the pages, but the ethnic balance in no way represented what I knew of the LAPD.
 
While the LAPD can be taken to task for many things, ethnic and gender representation is not one of them. From 1977 through 1990, I experienced the department’s growing pains as many more women and minorities joined the force. It wasn’t necessarily a smooth transition, but the fact it was occurring in the second largest police department in the nation was encouraging.
 
At one point in the mid-nineties, you could look around an LAPD detective squadroom and see ethnic clusters of detectives. By the end of the nineties, these barriers had been almost completely broken down…LAPD cops were no longer black, brown, white, or Asian – they had all become blue. Today’s LAPD almost perfectly matches in percentages the ethnic and gender make-up of the city it serves – unlike Ferguson, which has one black officer on their small department, which serves a community almost 95% black, a definite recipe for disaster.
 
So, how did I end up with all white cops in my novel and what should I do or not do about it? I wrote the second draft of the novel with this problem very much in mind, changing not just the ethnicity of some of the cop characters, but attempting to deepen their characters to reflect their race without reverting to stereotypes.
 
I didn’t feel forced to do this from white guilt or cultural pressure. I did it because my novel was based in the reality of a multi-cultural LAPD, which I wanted to reflect. 
 
You might ask if it is really possible for a white writer to create real ethnic characters. Of course it is – you need to look no further than Shaft created by Ernest Tidyman or Virgil Tibbs (In the Heat of the Night) from the typewriter of John Ball. Both are strong, lasting, black characters created by white writers. And there are many, many more examples.
 
As editor of the Fight Card series of boxing novels (www.fightcardbooks.com), I personally reached out to ethnically diverse writers to bring their viewpoints and realities to the series. As a result, some of Fight Card’s best monthly entries (Brooklyn Beatdown, Fist of Africa, Rise of the Luchador) have featured Black or Hispanic fighters. Boxing is a racially diverse sport. In its rich history there have been racially motivated flashpoints, yet stripped down to its basics in the ring, it is the pure experience of one man (or woman) facing off against another in an event to determine – corruption aside – the best fighter. I wanted and needed Fight Card to reflect that reality.
 
But here’s my question. Should any writer, in today's atmosphere of heightened race related challenges, bow to public pressure to create a more ethnically diverse cast of characters within the confines of their fictional worlds? 
 
Should Walter Mosely, for instance, be required to insert white characters into his Easy Rawlings novels for the sake of diversity? Should the black-centric works of Chester Himes or Robert Beck (better known as Iceberg Slim) be rewritten to integrate white characters, for the sake of today’s politically correct racial diversity? Perhaps that sound ridiculous, but could those books be written today without causing a PC outrage? 
 
I think they could…and rightfully so…But this leads me to an even more potentially controversial question: In today’s society, do white writers in particular have a responsibility to be more aware of their inclusion and handling of ethnic characters? Would this be catering to the PC police or an effort to support understanding and diversity? 
 
Does the subject of whitewashing, as it pertains to writers, even matter? Or is it a total non-issue? Should we all write what we write without giving specific thought to an ethnically balanced cast of characters? Where does a writer’s responsibility regarding race begin and end?
 
Seeking answers, I turned to several of my writing buddies…
 
Derrick Ferguson is the creator of the popular pulp adventurer, Dillon. Both Derrick and his creation, Dillon, are black and I wanted his perspective.
 
“I'd much rather hear an author changed some of the characters because his or her gut told them the characters should to more accurately reflect the multi-cultural background of whatever city their story is set. This is much preferable than doing it to cater to the PC-infested world we live in. The only agenda I ever had and still do with characters such as Dillon, Levi Kimbro and Sebastian Red is to put black heroic characters in situations we've never seen them in before.”
 
I like how you brought up that John Shaft and Virgil Tibbs were both black characters written by white writers – characters who have gone on to be pop culture icons. I myself believe the reason they've lasted so long is because both Tidyman and Ball wrote as characters who are black rather than as black characters, if that makes sense. I can only speak for me, but that's how I approach all my characters – As characters.”
 
Gary Phillips is the master of Black Pulp. He is the devious mind behind the Ivan Monk mysteries, Hollis P.I., McBleak – The Extractor, Luke Warfield – The Essex Man, and many other black-centric novels and short stories. As you read what he has to say on the matter, imagine him saying it in his deep, resonant voice…
 
“Even in Walter’s Easy books, whites or Latinos or others are there, so it’s not like he’s not portraying a full pallet of the character’s life and times. In fact, as you point out, your first-hand knowledge of what you experienced in the LAPD meant there was no way to ignore that on the page. Just as having knowledge of people like Bullard (a boxer, spy and ex-pat in jazz–age in Paris), or black aviatrix Bessie Coleman, or the parallel black life of L.A.’s 1920s-30s Central Avenue, and those stories I heard from my pops growing up about those times –  what could I do but not mine that for my character Decimator Smith who I first debuted in Black Pulp. I mean, it’s not as if people of color suddenly showed up in the ‘70s.  
 
Their stories real and imagined always existed, but weren’t always known, at least so far as mainstream – that is white publishing – was concerned.  John E. Bruce, a black writer in Black Sleuth, wrote a serialized mystery in 1907-9. His African private eye Sadipe Okukenu worked for the International Detective Agency and was on the trail of a stolen diamond.  But it’s Pauline Hopkins, who several years before Bruce, wrote Hagar's Daughter (1901-2), which is recognized as the first detective story written by an African American with black characters – though not as principals.  And Rudolph Fisher, another black writer who like Conan Doyle was a physician published in 1932 the Conjure Man Dies, a detective story with black sleuths Dr. John Archer and plainclothesman Perry Dart set in Harlem.
 
If I’m going to write a story set in present day Long Beach, say. Well I think it is incumbent I have some sense of the lay of the land.  I know there’s a sizable Cambodian/Cambodian-American population (as well as other Asian ethnicities) there so I might try to find though a connection some of those folk to talk to or just hang out in a Cambodian restaurant, if only to get some sense of the local “color” as it were.  It doesn’t mean I feel compelled to make my main character Southeast Asian, but doesn’t it give any story more depth, more a sense of reality to reflect reality – even if I’m writing a sci-fi, a mystery or pulp?
 
Marvel is apparently in talks with Tilda Swinton to play the Ancient One, Dr. Strange’s mentor in the movie.  Now for the uninitiated, the Ancient One was always a male Tibetan master of the mystic arts.  On one hand then, a bold and admirable move with the use of an older female for the role.  But make no mistake, Ms. Swinton ain’t no parts Asian – though I’m sure they won’t be putting her in Charlie Chan makeup either.  The Internet lit up over this, particularly among Asian writers and activists.  Should it be tit for tat and that means an Asian actor has to play Namor, the Sub-Mariner?  Or maybe we can cast our stories with as much life and reflection as we can, feel free to be different, to be experimental, but don’t forget our job is to tell the story as well as we can.
 
The short answer is, the writer shouldn’t bow to public pressure, write what it is you want – there’s an audience for the material or there’s not.” 
 
As well as writing numerous other highly successful novels, Jan Burke is the award winning author of the bestselling Irene Kelly novels and founder of The Crime Lab Project, which works to increase awareness of the problems facing public forensic science labs in the U.S.
 
If I only had one sentence, I'd say this: If you're going to tell someone's story, you have to listen to his or her story…
 
The truth is, none of the human world is all white. On the smallest scale of your humanity, your DNA shows your African heritage, and however long ago your ancestors ventured from it, you still carry lots and lots of it with you. On the largest scale — oh, honey, just look at the numbers. So the sooner we drop that pretense, the more honestly we are writing. Forget other agendas. This is about being real. So let's stop acting as if all the drama is about white people, and everyone else is around for set decoration.
 
But how, if you're in the currently powerful minority and have lived a fairly segregated life? 
 
If you're going to tell someone's story, you have to listen to his or her story.
 
Listen, not guess at it. 
 
Although they may help, imagination and empathy aren't enough. For example: if you're a competent writer who has never worked in law enforcement and you want to write about people who work in law enforcement, you'll do your homework, and not just about the job itself. You'll learn how it affects (in varied ways) the human beings — the varied, individual human beings — who hold the job. How they are treated by those who are not in law enforcement. How they think of those who are not their brethren. And more.
 
If you're going to tell someone's story, you have to listen to his or her story. 
 
You can't see a television or film representation of it and think you have it in mind. This may mean stepping out of your comfort zone, doing some work, challenging your assumptions. All worthwhile, both on the page and in life.
 
When it comes to white people telling the stories of African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, or people who combine any of the above, this all goes double, if not triple. Set your assumptions aside. Do your homework. Actively look for false portrayals in your work. And listen.
 
Otherwise, it's just fakery, which can be harmful at worst and distracting at best, but not much more.
 
The consensus appears to be, an author has an obligation to tell a story in the manner it needs to be told, without bowing to politically correct pressure, while at the same time taking care to portray minority characters in a realistic, non-stereotype way – write characters who are minorities as opposed to simply minority characters.

COMING SOON ~ FIGHT CARD: JOB GIRL

COMING SOON ~ FIGHT CARD: JOB GIRL

JASON CHIREVAS WRITING AS JACK TUNNEY

(SEQUEL TO FIGHT CARD: MONSTER MAN)

COVER BY
CARL YONDER

Monday, June 29, 2015

PULP NOW: THE FISTS OF R.E.H.

PULP NOW: THE FISTS OF R.E.H.

The minute I stepped ashore from the Sea Girl, merchantman, I had a hunch that there would be trouble. This hunch was caused by seeing some of the crew of the Dauntless. The men on the Dauntless have disliked the Sea Girl’s crew ever since our skipper took their captain to a cleaning on the wharfs of Zanzibar – them being narrow-minded that way. They claimed that the old man had a knuckle-duster on his right, which is ridiculous and a dirty lie. He had it on his left.
~ Robert E. Howard, The Pit of the Serpent

Although best known as the creator of Conan the Barbarian, Solomon Kane, and other sword and sorcery characters, Robert E. Howard had a lifelong interest in boxing, attending fights and avidly following the careers of his favorite fighters. Even though as a child he was bookish and intellectual, in his teen years he took up bodybuilding and eventually entered the ring as an amateur boxer. 

During the height of the pulp era from the late ‘20s through the ‘30s, REH used this background to make a good living banging out boxing tales for the likes of Fight Stories Magazine, Action Stories, Sport Story, Jack Dempsey’s Fight Magazine, and others. REH actually claimed his fictional fight tales – especially The Iron Man, and the adventures of Sailor Steve Costigan – to be among the best of his works. Primarily humorous in nature, Howard’s most popular and in demand boxing stories featured Sailor Steve Costigan. These tales were both creatively and financially critical to Howard’s development as a writer. 

Costigan was a lovable, hard-fisted, and innocent semipro pugilist who regularly squared-off against dastardly villains in exotic ports of call. Tales featuring Costigan were at times laugh out loud funny and brilliant examples of what, in writing circles, is referred to as an unreliable narrator. Written in first person, the voice of Sailor Steve Costigan is full of malapropisms and creative, near-swear invective.

As the undisputed champion of the merchant marine Sea Girl, Costigan has a heart of gold, fists of steel, and a head full of rocks, all of which get him – and his bulldog Mike – tossed into constant trouble. Costigan is lovable for two reasons. First, he is just not smart enough to do anything other than punch his way clear of trouble. And second, when he starts punching, every reader feels the joy of the underdog overcoming the odds with the solid landing of every blow. 

No matter how ridiculous the situation he places Costigan in, REH never ridicules the character, always putting Costigan on the side of the angels. Readers know they should always bet on Costigan coming through victorious in a fight, and they would be more than willing to share a beer with him afterward. Not too many readers would want to share suds with the brutal Conan or the dour Solomon Kane. Costigan is accessible, a larger than life everyman.

Not all of REH’s boxing stories are funny. Aside from essays exploring what attributes REH believed made a great boxer, his other boxing tales were alive with the sound and the fury of the real world of the square circle. Iron Man, in particular, is a revered saga for those followers not just of REH, but of boxing enthusiasts in general.

REH’s boxing fiction has recently been given its rightful place in the Howard pantheon. Under the title Fists of Iron, four volumes of REH’s boxing fiction have been published by the Robert E. Howard Foundation Press. These beautifully bound and numbered, hardcover editions sport stunning, pulp inspired wrap around covers and contain every story, partial story, and scrap of idea Howard produced. Editors, Mark Finn, Patrice Louinet, and Christopher Gruber each contributed an insightful and extensive introduction to the volumes in what is clearly a labor of love and appreciation for REH’s work.

The complete compendium of Fist of Iron has not only become a highly sought after collector’s item, but has preserved the two-fisted tales that helped a generation of readers to fight through the Great Depression and the tough years to follow. 

Even today, REH’s boxing fiction reads with immediacy and storytelling power. If you’ve never met, or never heard of REH’s boxing characters Sailor Steve Costigan, Kid Allison, Mike O’Brien, or Dennis Dorgan, now is the time to lace up your gloves, put up your dukes, and climb into the ring.

PULP NOW: TARZAN RETURNS

PULP NOW: TARZAN RETURNS

Prolific adventure writer Will Murray is a pulp savant. There are few other current pulp scholars who can match his knowledge of the wide range of pulps. Will has written uncountable introductions to pulp related anthologies, collections, and reprints. He has single handedly resurrected the career of one of pulps greatest heroes in his series, The Wild Adventures of Doc Savage from Altus Press.

Currently, he is poised for the release of his latest pulptastic adventure, The Wild Adventures of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan: Return to Pal-ul-don, an authorized sequel to one of Burroughs’ most celebrated Tarzan novels, Tarzan the Terrible.

Return to Pal-ul-don finds the African continent engulfed by World War II. To combat the spreading Nazi menace, Tarzan abandons his role as Lord of the Jungle to reclaim his persona as John Clayton, Lord Greystoke. Flying a P40 Tomahawk warplane, Clayton is sent on his first mission: to rescue the missing British Military Intelligence officer code-named Ilex. But the daring task plunges him into his savage past after he’s forced down in a lost land that seems hauntingly familiar. When Tarzan of the Apes returns to the prehistoric realm called Pal-ul-don, he must revert to his most savage persona, that of Tarzan-jad-guru—Tarzan the Terrible!

With the exciting news of a new Tarzan adventure, I was grateful to Will for taking the time for a quick interview.

What was your initial feeling after being asked to resurrect Tarzan, one of the most memorable characters of all time?

It was a mixture of excitement and pure panic. I recognized that this was a wonderful opportunity to explore a classic character I loved and had never before committed to paper. But I had a number of Doc Savage novels to write at the same time. Could I find time to write Tarzan? Fortunately, Jim Sullos, President of ERB Inc., gave me two years to turn in the manuscript. It took a year to produce, all the while writing Doc in between chapters.

Did your extensive work with Doc Savage prepare you for the process of writing Tarzan’s new adventures?

I’m sure it did, since Doc Savage creator Lester Dent was strongly influenced by Tarzan. Having written over 15 Doc novels, I’d learned the value of hewing to the original author’s tone, stylistics and vocabulary – in this case those of Edgar Rice Burroughs. But it was more important to dive into my collection of Tarzan novels and read the one I had agreed to sequel, along with others, to reacquaint myself with the series, which I first read back in the 1970s.

How did you develop the plot for Tarzan: Return to Pal-ul-don? 

The idea for this project came from a Tarzan fan named Gary Buckingham, who suggested Tarzan should return to the lost land of Pal-ul-don, the fantastic setting of Tarzan the Terrible. About 20 years ago, Del Rey Books invited me to write a Tarzan novel for a revival series that never got off the ground. So I dug deep into my electronic files and uncovered three premises I had pitched back in 1996. One of them, Grotto of Spiders, seemed to fit Gary’s premise. I generated a short pitch, which was approved. Beyond that, I did not plot the book so much as I discovered and explored the storyline as I went along. This is a quest. All I needed was to establish a concrete goal for Tarzan to pursue and find compelling challenges for him to overcome along the way. I seldom plot or outline my novels in detail. It interferes with the improvisational aspect of my creativity. Especially, when I’m channeling a deceased author.

What were the most important elements of the Tarzan series you wanted to highlight?

I wanted to recapture the essence of the authentic Tarzan, but also to avoid telling just another routine Tarzan adventure. In revisiting the original novels, I was reminded that Tarzan had served in the Royal Air Force during World War II. I decided it would be great to start off with John Clayton finishing up his flight training and being assigned a secret mission that would lead him into this adventure. The contrast between Flying Officer Clayton and Tarzan of the Apes excited me, and also created character tension. Clayton is on a military assignment. Shucking off his uniform and going full feral is something he’s determined to avoid. But the author had other plans...    

To what do you attribute Tarzan’s lasting appeal, while his many imitators – Ka-Zar the Great, Ki-Gor of Africa, Polaris of the Snows, and many others – have disappeared into obscurity?

Tarzan is immortal because Tarzan is a true original. The other characters you cite, regardless of their merits, were all distilled from the vision Edgar Rice Burroughs created over a century ago. Tarzan survives due to the power of Burroughs’ storytelling, as well as the Herculean efforts of Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. to perpetuate his works and memory.

How are characters like Doc Savage and Tarzan still relevant today?

Heroes never go out of style, even if their haircuts do. Like Sherlock Holmes, Doc Savage and Tarzan still fascinate in the 21st Century. Once upon a time, they were mere examples of then-contemporary fiction, but all have become frozen in their original time periods, and that seems to be where most readers prefer them. In that, they are no different than Robin Hood or Nero Wolfe, or any number of now-classic characters who seem more of their time, and more interesting in their time, than otherwise.

What other pulp characters would you like to see brought back for new adventures?

Shortly, Altus Press will release Doc Savage #200, The Sinister Shadow, in which Doc is challenged by The Shadow. I would like to write a standalone Shadow novel someday. Conan the Barbarian also fascinates me, but I’m not sure anybody short of Robert E. Howard can do him justice. But I’d like to try. John Carter of Mars is another favorite. As is a more obscure character, Street & Smith’s Bill Barnes, an aviation hero in the style of Doc Savage.

Are there more Wild Adventures of Doc Savage and Tarzan to come?

After Doc Savage #200, we will release The Secret of Satan’s Spine, a Doc Savage novel set in the Caribbean during World War II. We are already in talks to do a second Tarzan, which right now I will call, “Tarzan versus X.”  I can’t say who X is. This is another dream project which, if it comes to fruition, will astound fans of popular culture.

Hopefully, your reading appetite is whetted for a new Tarzan novel as well as the further Wild Adventure of Doc Savage … Check ‘em out!


Thursday, June 11, 2015

ROMANCE CORNER: SUMMER HEARTS



ROMANCE CORNER: SUMMER HEARTS

BOOK SYNOPSIS:

Every Summer Has a Love Story...Six Summer Tales of Sweet Romance that bring you the very best in Historical, Contemporary and Fantasy Romance. Sarah Daley, Carol Malone, Kathy Bosman, Debby Lee, Robyn Echols, and Lisa Watson weave stories of long days, sultry nights, sun-kissed beaches and sweet romance
Dreaming in California by Debby Lee:
In the summer of 1967, Hollywood actress, Lucinda Baker, appears to have it all-- fame, money, and an all too doting fiancé. Dark traits begin to emerge from the man she's pledged to marry, and he threatens her. Lucinda must now lean on her best friend, celebrity photographer, George Creston to escape the clutches of the dangerous relationship. Together they are forced to summon courage, and trust each other in desperate circumstances. Will they find love in the process or lose everything they hold dear, including their lives.
A Summer of Stars by Lisa Watson:
McKinley Graham has escaped to her summer getaway to regain her perspective and her health. Zane Davidson has taken refuge in the lovely seaside community, welcoming the healing balm of the salty sea air and his childhood home to mend his wounds. They aren’t looking for love, but their attraction is too explosive to ignore. Against the backdrop of starry nights and sultry kisses, they come to realize that even love may not be enough to save them from the angry storm of his past that threatens to destroy their dreams!

Drowning Sandy by Sarah Daley:

The water is calling...and Sandy can no longer resist the urge to unleash her mermaid form. But a simple swim in Lake Ontario ends when she discovers the truth of her own banishment. When long time crush, Alardo, seems to shift in a direction she never dreamed possible, Sandy must make a choice — mermaid or human? Once she chooses, she can never go back.
 
Summer Holiday by Carol Malone:

In the summer of 1905, Lizzy Gordon’s father dismisses her desire to be a doctor, demanding she become a teacher—a profession which does not allow women to marry. Determined to be free to choose her destiny, Lizzy defies her father and falls for her grandma's handsome neighbor—literally.Teacher Brent Pierce is dedicated to expanding young minds, but circumstances are forcing him to take over the family farm. Sweet complications arise when feisty Lizzy Golden drops into his arms.Before the summer is over Lizzy and Brent will be forced to make tough decisions. Can they find the courage to each fight for their independence, pursue their dreams, and still be together?

Shark Boss by Kathy Bosman:
 
When Tara takes up a job at the local aquarium, her colleagues warn her about their harsh boss, Mr. Carter Jones. She soon discovers how impatient he can be, but she also can’t deny her fascination and attraction to him. Carter can’t stop watching Tara as she works but holds back from her because of his secrets. If she knew what he was, she would never want him. Could the reason for Carter’s moods be related to something more troubling than what’s on the surface? Tara soon discovers Carter’s secret, and it only bonds them closer. But the curse starts to take over Carter’s life, and he won’t give his heart to a beautiful woman when he can only cause her pain.

The Best Place to Meet a Man by Robyn Echols:

Jeff goes to the beach to run and clear his head. Meredith goes to the beach intent on burying her nose in her book. In this contemporary romantic comedy, these two collide when Meredith’s two young nephews come up with other plans.
 
Get you copy now!

Grab your copy at one of these fabulous places:
 

And don't forget to add it to your TBR list!!!
 
Debby Lee Debby Lee was raised in the cozy little town of Toledo, Washington. She has been writing since she was a small child and has written several novels, but never forgets home. The Northwest Christian Writers Association and Romance Writers of America are two organizations Debby enjoys being a part of. Publications, thus far, include a series of short stories titled The Butterfly Fairytales Collection, and a novella with Barbour Publishing. As a self-professed nature lover, and an avid listener to 1960s folk music, Debby can't help but feel like a hippie child who wasn't born soon enough to attend Woodstock. She wishes she could run barefoot all year long, but often does anyway in grass and on beaches in her hamlet that is the cold and rainy southwest Washington. During the football season, Debby cheers on the Seattle Seahawks along with legions of other devoted fans. She's also filled with wanderlust and dreams of visiting Denmark, Italy, and Morocco some day.


Lisa Watson A native of Washington D.C., Lisa Watson writes multicultural novels with engaging storylines, strong, fun characters with universal appeal. Lisa's Match Broker series, introduced readers to Love Contract, and matchmaking guru, Norma Jean Anderson, aka The Love Broker. Book two in the series, Her Heart’s Desire, was a #1 on Amazon’s Bestseller list, and was listed as one of 2014’s Top 25 Books of the Summer, and Top 50 Best Reads. Book three, Love by Design was #2 on the Amazon Bestseller list. Her latest story is a Sweet Romance. A Summer of Stars, is one of the novellas in the Summer Hearts Compilation. This exciting new collection featuring five additional authors, and their sweet, beach-themed romances, will be released May 2015. Lisa works at a technology consulting firm, is the co-publicist for RT BookReview Magazine's annual RT Booklovers Conventions, and host for Reader’s Entertainment Radio show. Married for nineteen years, with two teenagers, and a Maltipoo, Brinkley, Lisa lives outside Raleigh, NC and is avidly working on a Sweet Romance, and her next series.

 
Sarah Daley
  Sarah lives in Arizona with her best friend and husband, Chris, their adorable monster child, and neurotic dog. At the age of six, she became a reading machine. Devouring everything she could possibly get her hands on. In high school she almost failed English three times because of her detest for writing book reports. Today, Sarah writes whatever stories haunt her dreams, and struggles to focus on one idea at a time. When she isn’t enjoying time with her family, or writing, you will find her nose stuck in a book, or out walking and enjoying the sunshine. Drowning Sandy is her debut novella! Links to find out what is coming next:
 
Carol Malone Award-winning author Carol Malone has successfully combined her three passions – romance, sports, and writing in her two highly-rated books, Fight Card Romance: Ladies Night, and Ladies Night Christmas sequel. She was the first woman to write a romance for the all-male dominated genre. Carol invites her readers to scramble into a front row seat for a thrill-ride of suspense, sports, and romance. If not hammering out new tales, Carol’s loves reading, sports, and hanging with her author husband on the coast of California.
 
Kathy Bosman
 
SweetKathy

Author, Kathy Bosman[/caption] Kathy loves reading and writing even more. She home-schools her three kids, so in between unsuccessfully explaining the difference between subject and predicate or how to divide fractions, she enters an imaginary world of troubled and passionate characters whose stories take over the page. Kathy lives in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa, where the summers are hot, the winters cool, and bugs thrive. Her first published novel, Wedding Gown Girl, came out in 2012 with Astraea Press. She belongs to the Romance Writers of South Africa Group (ROSA) which has been her greatest support and inspiration the last few years.



Robyn Echols
 
Robyn Echols has been writing since she was in junior high school. By choice, she spent most of her evening hours in her "dungeon", as her mother called her downstairs bedroom, writing stories, only
joining her family in front of the television upstairs when her favorite programs were playing. She has spent hours learning and teaching family history topics, and focuses on history from a genealogist's perspective of seeking out the details of everyday life in the past. Several of her family history articles have been published in genealogy magazines. Now Robyn resides with her husband in California near the “Gateway to Yosemite” and has fun researching and writing the books that she hopes will interest and entertain her readers. She writes Young Adult/New Adult and contemporary fiction under Robyn Echols and adult historical romance under her pen name, Zina Abbott.
When Robyn isn’t busy piecing together novel plots, she stays busy piecing together quilt blocks.

 
Compiled by R M Alexander
RM Alexander is an author of clean romances that are sometimes contemporary, sometimes paranormal or suspense, but are always ruled by the heart of true romance. With characters who look for love in the wrong places and are victims or the worse kinds of betrayal while fighting for what they want and believe in, RM's novels promise a good read with unexpected twists and turns. When she's not writing, RM is spending time with her husband and two small children in Michigan. She loves to travel, especially to Walt Disney World, and can often be found on Twitter or Facebook chatting with other authors and readers.
 
Cover designed by: Creative Book Covers
Check them out here: www.creativebookcovers.com

  Check out our new book launch video.
It'll make you long for the beach!


Visit each and every blog on our tour EVERY DAY and enter to win our fabulous beach-summer-themed prizes and Amazon gift cards!

Don’t forget to enter your name into our GIVEAWAY!!!

SummerCompilationGiveaways

Summer Compilation Giveways Prizes Which one will be yours?

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Book Tour Schedule:
(You can check out posts that have been made during this tour here:

Don't forget! Each author in this tour will be featured once during the tour, and on her special day there will be all kinds of fun facts to check out about her and her book!
June 6th:
Featuring Dreaming in California by Debbie Lee
June 7th:
Featuring A Summer of Stars by Lisa Watson







June 8th: Featuring Drowning Sandy by Sarah Daley

June 9th: Featuring Summer Holiday by Carol Malone

June 10th: Featuring Shark Boss by Kathy Bosman

June 11th: Featuring The Best Place to Meet a Man by Robyn Echols

June 12th: Featuring the entire compilation
 

Summer Hearts, a sweet summer read for your holiday on the beach! Enjoy!