Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Spotlight - Andrea R. Cooper

Hi everyone,

Please welcome the lovely Andrea R. Cooper. Andrea writes fantasy, paranormal, historical, and contemporary romance suspense.  Today Andrea has brought along her delicious Viking tales – Viking Flame and Viking Fire.


So if you like your ages dark, like I do – why not check these out!


Viking Flame

Prequel to Viking Fire


Bram has agreed to marry an Irish nobleman’s daughter in exchange for land and his services fighting with the Laird Liannon’s clan against rival Irishmen. However, Bram’s intended does not stir his heart. Not like the Laird’s daughter, Kaireen.

Somehow, he must not only convince the Laird to amend his marriage contract, but win the heart of the stubborn feisty Kaireen.




Near the beach, the man quit rowing and yanked out a knife.

Bram didn’t move. “You go against your Captain’s orders t—”

“You made it to shore. That’s all we’s promised.” He spat at Bram’s boots. “No one said anything about you living afterwards.” When he dove forward, Bram ducked to the side and snatched the sailor’s arm, pinning it to his side. When the sailor slung with his free arm, Bram increased the pressure until the man was on his knees.

“Cease, or I will break your arm.” If it wasn’t for his pledge to Morga, he’d have snapped the man’s arm already. Once his contract was signed with the Laird, then he’d be free to fight in Ireland—or at least against other Vikings and rival Irishmen. The man continued to struggle, “Or perhaps a leg as well? What will your Captain say if you return without your weapon and injured? Will he be merciful and allow you to recover or throw you to the sharks?”

“Heathen scum!” He twisted his body to escape Bram’s grip.

As he did, Bram snapped the man’s wrist backward and the first mate let out a howl before the blade came closer to Bram’s chest.

“Now, hand me the knife.” When the man glared at him, he increased pressure on the bent wrist. “Or this heathen might do worse so that not even the sharks would want you.”

The first mate gulped and released his hold of the knife.

Bram broke his hold and snatched the blade out of the air before it hit the water. “Tell your Captain, I will not forget his hospitality nor will any of my eight brothers.”

The man paled. “What brings you to our island? To rape our women and pillage our churches?”

“No.” Bram rose and tucked the small blade into his boot. “To find my bride.”


Amazon only – Buy Link:



Viking Fire


In 856 CE, Ireland is a land of myth, magic, and blood. Viking raiders have fought the Irish for over half a century. Rival Irish clans promise only betrayal and carnage.

Kaireen, daughter of Laird Liannon, is suddenly forced into an arranged marriage with her sworn enemy, a Viking. She refuses to submit. With no mention of love, only land and the protection of her clan, she endeavors to get her betrothed banished from her country. Will love find its way around her stubborn heart?


Bram, the Viking, finds himself without future or inheritance as a younger son in his family. A marriage to the Laird’s daughter would grant him land if he swears fidelity and if his men will fight along with the Liannons against any foe—Irish or Viking. However, the Laird’s feisty daughter only holds animosity for him and his kind. Is marriage worth the battle scars of such a relentless opponent?


With the blame for a rival laird’s death treacherously set against the Liannons, Kaireen and Bram must find a way to lay aside their differences as an unforeseen darkness sends death snapping at their heels.


Viking Fire Book Trailer:

Viking Fire Buy Links:

Viking Fire Amazon:

Viking Fire B & N:

Viking Fire iTunes:


Here’s a little bit about Andrea!

Andrea has always created characters and stories. But it wasn't until she was in her late twenties that she started writing novels.

What happened that ignited the writing flame in her fingers? Divorced, and disillusioned by love songs and stories. They exaggerate. She thought. Love and Romance are not like that in the real world. Then she met her husband and realized, yes love and romance are exactly like the songs and stories say.

She is now a happy wife, and a mom to three kids (two boys and a girl).She believes in the power of change and counting each moment as a blessing. But most importantly, she believes in love.


Twitter: @AndreaRCooper

Author Website:



Thanks so much for stopping by.


Nicóle xx

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Crafting the Dreaded Logline

Hi everyone,

Today I thought I’d talk about that tricksy little sentence – the logline. The logline is also known as a ‘pitch’ and even sometimes referred to as the ‘elevator pitch’. So called in the off chance you happen to barrel up a hapless editor in an elevator and pitch your novel. You’ve only got a few seconds before those doors open, so you need a sentence that’s short, sharp and grabs their attention.

*Note an elevator is one thing. Please do not follow the so called hapless editor to the bathroom still pitching your idea because that’s just a bit creepy.*


A logline can be useful when pitching a story both in person, online or even in your query letter. It can also stop the ‘eye glaze’ when your nearest & dearest ask ‘So what’s your book about?’

However they can also be a bugger to write. It’s very difficult to take your entire story and condense it down to one sentence, whilst still keeping the essence of it. It takes a bit of practice (and maybe a Zen moment with a cup of tea) but if you persist you can conquer the logline.


The trick is not only getting as much of the pertinent information into that one little sentence but also keeping it slick.

I’ve broken down a handful of my own loglines in the hope that they could help.



So grab your story and have a go. See if you can compress your story into a finely crafted sentence. Go on, I know that you can do it! J


Some publishers will call for pitches using loglines. For example Carina Press has just held their #CarinaPitch on Twitter. Here you not only had to have a logline but it had to meet the Twitter criteria of consisting of 140 characters.

Julianna Keyes wrote a very interesting article on crafting 140 character loglines. I’ve included the link -


Thanks for stopping by.


Nicóle xx


Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Paranormal Love Wednesdays

Hi everyone,

I’m taking part in the Paranormal Love Wednesdays Blog Hop. So if you like all things otherworldly, join in and hop your way through the different posts. This blog hop is a weekly occurrence, so drop back each week for sneaky peeks and snippets of fabulous new titles. Today I’m featuring; Black is the Colour – Tales from the Hearthfire.


Ciana has loved Oran all her life and nothing, not even her father will prevent them from being together. But the Mayor of Stonemark has higher aspirations for his daughter than the village blacksmith. He engages the help of a witch and dark magic to bend Ciana to his will.

Oran knows that he doesn’t deserve Ciana. But their love is stronger than the metal he forges and welds. She has his heart and he will never turn from her no matter the cost.

They plan to run away and start a new life far beyond her father’s reach. But their escape comes too late. Separated, Ciana will need all her strength to journey through the deep forest and save Oran from the witch’s curse. Alone and with only a trail of black feathers to follow, Ciana will fight against the odds and attempt to bring her lover home.

Shortened Amazon link -

Thanks for stopping by.

Nicóle xx

Here's the link back to Paranormal Love Wednesdays Blog Hop...

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Updated Website

Hi everyone,

I've finally updated my website. Yes, it's taken me most of the afternoon but it's finally done. Hopefully now it won't be such a muddle. Love to hear what you think.

Thanks for stopping by.

Nicóle xx

Banner by Have a Slice Productions.

Friday, 13 March 2015

When Inspiration Strikes.

Hi everyone,

This post is more about inspiration than writing. This week I volunteered or I should say that my husband volunteered my services to help out at an employment expo he was organising (the truth is he roped in the entire family). There were lots of employers presented as well as jobs, information seminars and study opportunities.  The whole expo was a resounding success and Chris did an amazing job in putting it all together.

What’s that got to do with writing and/or inspiration I hear you say???

The inspiration came in the form of the venue. The Bendigo Town Hall is another wonderful example of Victorian era architecture and design. I’ve included a few photos just so you can see how pretty it is. It's decorated in cream, soft green and gilt. I'm in heaven, I mean I could really live in this space.

My son took the photos (see I said the entire family was volunteered).

So for the past couple of days my head has been spinning with possibilities.  I can just see our heroine who is dressed in pale green silk, standing on the balcony looking down at the ball below. Her eyes lock onto our hero who is standing on the edge of the dance floor.

I’m not sure what sort of story will be, the building lends itself to historical romance but it could be used in a contemporary. Ah, the plot bunnies are beginning to hop about. J

Thanks for stopping by.

Nicóle xx

 Photos by Have a Slice Productions.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Australian Rural Romance

Hi everyone,

As some of you may know my latest book, McKellan’s Run is an Australian Rural Romance. It’s set around where I was brought up in central Victoria. I’ve borrowed from the landscape and created the fictional town of Violet Falls. The country around here is filled with bush, farms, rustic towns, the old goldfields and the odd winery, so it’s pretty easy to get inspired.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m working on the second book, In Like Flynn (working title).

If you love rural romances, you might like to check out the Australian Rural Romance (ARR) site. A group of authors have banded together to showcase their quintessential Australian stories. From the outback, to the mountains, to the coast – the stories are as varied as our land.

Here’s the link and I hope you’ll stop by.

There’s also a Facebook page if you’d like to keep up to date with what’s happening. J

Rural Romance Writers & Readers


McKellan’s Run will be released on the 22nd April.


Violet Beckett once made the mistake of falling for the wrong McKellan brother. Now, eight years later, fate has brought Violet back to her home town with her daughter, Holly.

As soon as Violet runs into Charlie ‘Mac’ McKellan, she wonders if she should run all the way back to the city. But something about him makes her want to linger. Can she trust him, can she trust herself or will she be burned again?

Charlie McKellan has had a soft spot for Violet Beckett for longer than he can remember. It almost killed him to watch his brother woo her, use her and finally lose her. From his very first encounter with Violet he’s hooked. But how can he convince her that not all McKellans are the same?

I thought I’d share some of the photos I took around the local area to give you a feel of what McKellan’s Run is like.

This is the Market building (well, at least the top half of it - I never said I was a great photographer). It was built in the 1860's and is a symbol of the wealth and opulence of the gold mining era. The statue on top is of Ceres, the goddess of the harvest.


Thanks for dropping by.

Nicóle  xx

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Bits & Bobs

Hi everyone,

Sorry I’ve been missing for a little while. I’ve been finishing off the edits/proofs etc. for McKellan’s Run which is due for release on the 22nd of April. It will be available in both ebook and print. McKellan’s Run is up on pre-order at the moment on all sorts of sites, such as Book Depository, Booktopia and of course Amazon.

Here’s the Amazon link –


 And here’s the final blurb -

Violet Beckett once made the mistake of falling for the wrong McKellan brother. Now, eight years later, fate has brought Violet back to her home town with her daughter, Holly.

As soon as Violet runs into Charlie ‘Mac’ McKellan, she wonders if she should run all the way back to the city. But something about him makes her want to linger. Can she trust him, can she trust herself or will she be burned again?

Charlie McKellan has had a soft spot for Violet Beckett for longer than he can remember. It almost killed him to watch his brother woo her, use her and finally lose her. From his very first encounter with Violet he’s hooked. But how can he convince her that not all McKellans are the same?


In the tradition of novels by Rachael Johns’, McKellan’s Run tells the story of two very special people who deserve another chance.


In other news, I’ve booked to go to the RWA’s ‘Get Fresh Conference’ in Melbourne in August. I have to admit I’m very excited as this will be my first one. The line-up of speakers and workshops look interesting.
Here’s a link  -

On the writing front I’ve just made it to the halfway point of In Like Flynn (working title, although I have to admit I like it). It’s the second book in the Violet Falls series and deals with local sheep farmer, Flynn Hartley and Lily Beckett (Violet’s little sister). I’m really enjoying writing this story and I have to admit I think I’ve got a little bit of a crush on Flynn. I’m sure that’s wrong but you see, he’s funny and sexy and he’s got the type of smile that makes a girl’s heart skip a beat.
Both Flynn and Lily appear in McKellan’s Run but it didn’t take me long to realise that they both deserved not only their own story but a shot at a happy ending.
I’ve cobbled together a rough blurb so you can get the idea. J
It’s the heat of summer and the middle of the bushfire season when Lily Beckett's life implodes and lies in tatters at her feet. All she can do is run back to her sister, Violet and try and regroup.
She's learnt her lesson and vowed to stay away from men - at least for a little while. So the last thing she needs is Flynn Hartley, Violet Falls' notorious womanizer hanging around. Lily refuses to be just another one of his conquests, but the more she pushes him away, the more determined he appears to become.
Flynn has spent the last few years restoring and building up his sheep run, The Grange into a successful farm. He's never been in love or a long time relationship. In fact the whole idea terrifies him. But somehow, Lily Beckett with her dark hair and sexy freckles has got under his skin. And for the first time in his life, Flynn is at a loss - how the hell did that happen?
So there it is, well sort of. At the moment both Flynn and Lily are getting into all types of tangles, so I’d better sign off and go and see if I can help them out.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
 Nicóle xx