Alien Embrace on Sale for Black Friday weekend!

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Alien Embrace Cover 5 copyIf you don’t want to face the masses of people for Black Friday,  just sit back and get the Kindle (or free Kindle app) version for this weekend for only $.99

Also featured on Fussy Librarian on Friday!

Buy link for the sale-

Snippet –

Mark snagged two glasses of champagne and returned to her side. They touched glasses in a silent toast, and each took a drink. She delicately wrinkled her nose at the taste, and he was chuckling when something knocked his arm. He had to maneuver quickly to keep from spilling any of the champagne on her dress. He had time to think it was a good thing he’d taken a nice swig from the glass when he turned and saw Cynthia standing there.

He knew instantly, and without a doubt, that the hit to his elbow had been deliberate, and she was disappointed he’d managed not to ruin Lori’s dress. “Cynthia.” There was no way he could accuse her, and she knew it.

“I’m surprised to see you here, Mark. I know you don’t like this kind of thing.”

“We thought something like this would be fun, since it’s not an every night occurrence.”

She met his eyes; hers were cold. “Aren’t you going to introduce me?”

He didn’t see a way to avoid the meeting, so he nodded. “Cynthia, this is Lori Sullivan. Lori, Cynthia Broome.” There was no relationship mentioned with either name, and he saw Cynthia’s lips tighten. He looked at her then, really looked. She was so different from Lori. Her hair had been artistically put up, but it was too … fancy. Her dress, which she probably thought would bring out the blue in her eyes, was too busy. There were ruffles and angles, and it was about one size too tight, especially over those expensive breasts. Of course she was wearing the three-inch heels, but she still wasn’t tall enough to carry off the dress. Her makeup was too heavy, her eyes too smoky. He realized with a start that Lori wasn’t wearing any makeup at all, not even lipstick. Her lips were that beautiful natural color all the time; and her lashes were long and full, even when she woke up in the morning. Cynthia looked blousy next to Lori’s sleek sophistication, and no doubt she was aware of it, hence the attempt at sabotage with the champagne. Mark stepped closer to Lori to protect her, and Cynthia’s eyes narrowed.

Mark spotted Dennis Helms behind Cynthia. They had met him a few times when he had been dating Cynthia. “Dennis, did you enjoy the movie?”

They spoke for a few minutes, Mark’s hand now resting on the warm silky skin of Lori’s back, his thumb lightly caressing her warmth, his body carefully between the two women. Maybe it had been a mistake bringing Dennis into the conversation, because he quite obviously couldn’t take his eyes off Lori, and that was only making things worse.

“Well, if you’ll excuse us, we’re going to get a little food before we leave.” He nodded to the couple and watched Cynthia snap at Dennis, though he missed the words. He guided Lori toward the table and picked up one of the small plates.

She didn’t take the dish from him. “Does she sell real estate?”

Mark looked her directly in the eyes. “She does.”

“She seemed quite angry.”

“She is. I was seeing her, and I broke things off rather abruptly. She has the right to be angry with me.”

“Why did you break things off so abruptly with her?”

“I met my soul mate.” He hadn’t planned to say that, especially not here in this crowd, but her eyes widened.

“Do I know her?”

“Yes, maybe slightly better than I do, but I hope not for long.”

“Soul mate?”


Thankful for You

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Thankful for You Hop

This is a thank you to my fans, the people who have made my dream come true. I am now writing full time. I’ve written since I was a little girl. No one read any of that, it was only for me for two reasons – 1) it wasn’t good enough to share and 2) I was too scared to share it even when I thought it was good.


Gradually I grew some courage (thanks Hubby) and began to share (sparingly) and eventually because at least some people liked my stories, I did really put myself out there. I admit I have a tendency to write what I wanted to read and couldn’t find—Strong Women. I’d read too many stories in the “too stupid to live” category and I knew women weren’t really like that. I had too many role models that proved my point. So I decided to concentrate on those stories that cropped up in my mind. You’ll see that more often than not it’s my heroines who save the bacon of my heroes, or at least share equally in the task.

Becca - Learning Trust                       Nikki - Red Shoes               Rachel - Melting 3

Learning Trust                    Red Shoes                          Cohesion – The Melting Book 3

As a thank you I’m giving away a couple of eBooks from my back list. Just leave a comment here on the blog of what you’re grateful that you’re finally able to do and share the fun (click on that red comment stamp at the top of the page). Be sure to check out all of the other authors and their giveaways as well.

Where are the rest of the hoppers! Find them below.



1. herding cats & burning soup (INT) 32. Bokerah 63. Tory Richards
2. vox libris 33. LilyElement Book Reviews (INT) 64. The Flare Up (INT)
3. Laughing Vixen Lounge (INT) 34. Susan Arden 65. Romantic Ramblings
4. BIBLIOPHILE MYSTERY (INT) 35. Jessica E. Subject 66. Anne Lange (Int)
5. MYTHICAL BOOKS (INT) 36. Poppy Lawless 67. Romancing Rakes For The Love of Romance (INT)
6. Angel’s Guilty Pleasures (INT) 37. Melanie Karsak 68. Nancy Lee Badger, Author
7. Reading Romances (INT) 38. Natasha Blackthorne 69. For the Love of Bookends
8. Selena Kitt 39. Victoria Adams (INT) 70. Gracen Miller (INT)
9. Emme Rollins 40. Sorcha McInnes 71. Reading Between the Wines Book Club (Int)
10. Excite Spice 41. Mindy Hardwick 72. Celia Breslin
11. Share My Destiny (INT) 42. Read Your Writes Book Reviews 73. Melissa Limoges
12. Joanne Jaytanie (INT) 43. V.S. Morgan 74. Author Elisa Marie Hopkins
13. BookHounds (INT) 44. Jacey Holbrand 75. Rambling Reads
14. BookHounds YA (INT) 45. Book Lovin’ Mamas 76. Urban Girl Reader
15. The Kids Did It 46. Where the Story Comes First 77. Sharing Links and Wisdom
16. Talk Supe 47. Dianne Duvall, Author 78. Krysten Lindsay Hager, author INT
17. Iyana Jenna 48. Donna Steele 79. In The Pages of a Good Book
18. Alicia @ Addicted Readers (INT) 49. My Book Snack (US) 80. Tonya Kinzer
19. Jennifer Chambers 50. Sara Daniel 81. Naughty Readers
20. Rockin’ Book Reviews 51. Christine Murphy 82. Deanna Jewel
21. The Book Lovers Codex (INT) 52. Lea’s Crazy Nights 83. LeTeisha Newton (US)
22. Lucy Felthouse 53. Deal Sharing Aunt 84. Essence Write
23. Read for your future! 54. 3 Partners in Shopping 85. Rose Wynters
24. Brittney’s Book Nook 55. Night Owl Book Cafe (INT) 86. Colleen S Myers
25. Margo Bond Collins (INT) 56. Brooke Blogs (INT) 87. On the Broomstick (Dana Wright author)
26. Daryl Devore (INT) 57. Tabitha Conall 88. Bitten by Romance
27. Elisabeth Staab (US) 58. Rosanna Leo 89. Romance Novel Giveaways
28. Author Lynn Burke 59. Houston Havens 90. Savings in Seconds (US)
29. Scribbler’s Sojourn 60. The Crafty Cauldron 91. The Mommy Island (US)
30. Pembroke Sinclair 61. Craves the Angst (INT) 92. Fire and Ice Book Promos WW
31. Erzabet’s Enchantments PNR Author Erzabet Bishop 62. The Jeep Diva 93. Bottles & Books Reviews (US)

Nano Encouragement


Thought I’d share the encouragement one too…

Okay, we’re more than half way there and your word count is not where you wanted it to be. Join the club–no really you’re not alone there. The thing is, if you quit, I’ll never get to read your story. Think about that.  frustrated writer

You’ve fallen behind, real life has intruded, and the kid spilled juice over your keyboard. Okay not that bad, but you’re ready to throw up your hands. Been there. But that happened behind you, now we have to face forward again, pull up our big girl panties and get back on track.

It’s not easy (and childbirth is not just pressure–see I’m not lying to you) but you can do it. Go shut yourself away for ten minutes (bathrooms work) and think about that last scene you were able to get down. Feel it, live it, visualize it and make it come alive in you again.

You know what happens next. But you’re shut up in the bathroom, so just sit there and let it play out in your mind. No pencil, no keyboard, visualize it. No one knows these characters like you do, let them play. If they zig left and away from the story, let them go for it. This is their freedom, you’re just watching. 

This is something I do all the time, not just for NaNoWriMo. When I go to bed at night I run that scene through again and set it in my mind. I feel like I’m slipping a cassette into the VCR (I’m old, I understand that technology better) and just watch. It’s amazing how freeing that is. I’m not writing, I’m literally letting them play. They need that since I had them harnessed to my story all day. They need to stretch their legs. The first thing in the morning, before the alarm goes off and ruins it is another good time (probably best for Saturday or Sunday). This also works great for when I’m stuck. These characters can come up with great ideas too, you know, if you’ve made them real enough.

frustrated writer 2Your mind is working all the time, whether you’re conscious of it is another thing. I was recently on a long car trip. I told myself before I started the engine for the return trip that I wanted to write a Christmas story, just a short little thing, for this year. That’s all I thought. Seven hours later when I got home, I had a story mostly written in the back of my mind. It’ll be published this holiday season – Nowhere for Christmas. It didn’t write itself, I wrote it, but it’s because I let them play the whole time I was in the car.

Another trick I use when I’m stuck is to rewrite the scene in a different POV. He sees things a lot differently than she does. Use that, get it down. You don’t have to decide which to use right now, so write them both. He might have noticed things she missed entirely and ramp the story up a notch or two. I tend to write my manuscripts in one POV. Then when I’m “finished” I write the other person. Seeing it from both sides adds a lot of depth and layers to the scene. He might not notice or care if the curtains are drawn, but she’s not going to do anything the neighbors might see. Same setting, same people, totally different scene.

You’ve got tricks too whether you realize it or not. Share them (in December after you’ve finished this book) and try someone else’s idea. There’s no right way to do this, only what works for you.

Big girl panties on straight? Get back to it! My TBR pile is calling you…

Stop by and see me! – you can check out the blurb for Nowhere for Christmas there as well as a couple of other Christmas stories I’ve written since then.
Nowhere for Christmas         Christmas Present        Christmas with Family flat-3

NaNoWriMo – It’s November again!


Thought I’d let you see this one more time…..

No way – a book in a month?? First let me say, it can be done. No you don’t have time or an idea that big – I’ve heard it before (I’ve said it before) but we both know that’s just an excuse. You’re a writer. Don’t expect to write War and Peace or Gone With The Wind – that’s not what this is about.

This is for getting that idea out of your head and writing it down without editing or correcting–I’ll repeat that for emphasis–just get the idea out of your head and on paper (or computer – you know what I mean). There’s plenty of time to revise and edit and pretty it up, this is to write it the first time. What has been referred to by others as the “vomit pass” –get it out. writers block

But my idea isn’t “big” enough. Are you sure? Have you started on that writing down part? It might be a little late to practice for this year–but remember, we get a November annually–have you tried flash fiction? You’re given an image, one shot and you write 100 words on it. That’s what I did for Red Shoes. But once I had those 100 words down, I realized I knew what had happened before that and how it continued. It became a novella from one image and 100 words. If I can do it . . .

Now you know you have that idea that’s been in the back of your head for ages (maybe years) but you haven’t taken the time to stop and really look at it. Now’s that time. Take it out, investigate it, why has it remained in your head all this time? There is the kernel of a story there and you know where you want to take it, or have it take you.

Statistically 90% of the people that have that idea never write it down and of those 10% that do, 90% don’t send it to anyone to try to have it published or take the time to publish it themselves. That’s a lot of stories I’ll never get to read. Think about it.

I don’t know how to start. Okay, the first page, the first sentence can be very intimidating. I’ll let you in on a little secret. You don’t have to write linearly. The reader will never know if you wrote the ending first. Honest, I won’t tell if you don’t. If you have a scene that’s in your head, write it down. Keeping it in your head doesn’t help, but seeing it on the screen can lead to the previous scene or the next one. Yes, eventually you’ll have to connect those scenes, but you already know how that happens. You just have to get it out of your head.

Pile of BooksAre you seeing a theme here? You’re a writer, your job is to write. For November, make it your main job, your top priority. Housework will always be there, no matter how many mornings you make the bed, you’ll have to again the next morning (same with laundry). Take the chance.

Another secret here–even if you don’t “finish” it, however much you get down will be more than you had and you will have started. No more white paper fear, no more trying to begin with the perfect sentence. You’ll be past that and into the story you want to tell.

It’s a great time to be a writer–there are so many venues to publishing now, there are so many genres and sub-genres to write and read, the pool isn’t that deep–jump in, you’ll be in great company. And maybe you will have cleared your head . . .  Man Reading Book and Sitting on Bookshelf in Library

Cover Reveal – Christmas With Family


Coming November 10 – Christmas With Family   Christmas with Family flat

Neither Symone nor Blake expected to have a four-year-old girl for Christmas, but when her father is critically injured and her mother has to go to him, what else can they do? And getting to know each other might not be a bad thing…

Christmas with Family will be a giveaway at The Romance Studio on November 10. Be sure to sign up!


Other Christmas stories from Donna Steele –

Nowhere for Christmas      Christmas Present

Do you believe in Ghosts?


Thought I’d rerun this one for Halloween – please add your stories!

Well? It’s almost Halloween so it’s a legitimate question. Have you ever had an encounter? Since I wrote a ghost story, I guess I have to confess that I do believe in them. And yes, I’ve had a couple of encounters.  ghost

Being so close to Halloween I’m going to share. The first one I was only twelve. My grandmother that lived with us had passed away recently. I was in bed and heard something in the formal living room. I mean, I really heard something enough that I got up and woke Daddy to tell him. My hearing was very good, so he got up and checked. Nothing, no one in the house besides the family, so I went back to bed.

But the sound woke me up again and when I opened my eyes. My grandmother was standing at the foot of the bed. I panicked big time and again made off for Daddy. Fortunately I had the world’s best Daddy and when I told him what was going on, he nodded. “That’s probably who was in the living room. Donna, she checked on you every night after you went to bed. What’s the problem?” Put it all in perspective and I went back to bed. Did I tell you he was cool?

halloween tree

The next time I was in college and had rented an apartment with three other girls for the summer to work in the same town as the university. I had to get up and leave earlier than my roommate and had gotten dressed in the bathroom as usual to try to keep quiet. When I reached for the doorknob, I drew my hand back scared to death. I knew there was something evil on the other side of that door (and I’m NOT talking the roommate). I was frozen, but a few minutes later the feeling went away and I was able to get out.  That day at work, (I was a temp at an engineering company) I was sitting at a spare desk that was up against and faced the wall. No view at all, but I was typing so it didn’t matter. Without anyone coming near me (and remember no one could go around the front of the desk) the electric typewriter power cord wrapped itself around my leg – three loops. I hadn’t moved. I didn’t know anyone well enough there to say anything, so I sat silent until that evil feeling went away again, then I unwrapped my leg.  I guess I didn’t react like it wanted and I’ve never felt it again. I’m not sorry.

So I wrote Wraith’s Heart– a ghost story from the perspective of the ghost. I can see Daddy’s influence here as well.  Here’s a little excerpt – WraithsHeart_finalCover

Ryan let himself into the apartment. Gail hurried behind him. He’d brought her case home again, even though he’d had to work on some other stuff during the afternoon.

It seemed to her as though he wanted to be alone with the case. Away from all the distractions and everyone at work, like she belonged to him. She had to be projecting but it felt good.

Gail realized watching the video from the hotel had unnerved her. It was her, no mistake but it was all gone from her mind. Why had she straightened up? What had she seen? Obviously not something close enough for Mr. Sanders to pay attention. No car? Someone else walking around? Someone else who stayed out of the lights from the hotel?

Ryan dropped his bag inside the door and headed for the kitchen. As he passed the remote, he flipped on the TV but didn’t turn to watch anything.

He heated up the rest of last night’s dinner and carried it over to the couch. He turned the TV off a few minutes later and shook his head in disgust.

“What?” She hadn’t been paying attention and knew he couldn’t hear her, but the question came without thought.

“Not a word, not a friggin’ word about the murder of a beautiful young woman. The city council took the whole broadcast and they’re all idiots!” Ryan ran a hand through his hair. “Fuck.”

Startled she sat on one of the stools at the bar as he unbuttoned his shirt and headed for the bedroom. He was angry. Angry because she wasn’t the top news? He cared about her, well the case anyway. She couldn’t move.

Okay, what was he doing in there? She had to know.

He did pushups again and damn! His body was beautiful. Was he working off anger? His hair grew damp from sweat and the ferocity of his workout seemed a lot more intense.

She didn’t know what to think.  She took a seat at the foot of the bed, Indian-style and watched.

Her eyes widened as he stripped off the t-shirt and shucked the boxers. Holy Bob . . . He stepped into the shower not waiting for it to heat up. He wasted no time washing and quickly dried off. He slipped into the bed and set his alarm for five a.m.

Five? Shit, that was early. Okay, it didn’t really affect her anymore but it still sounded early. He didn’t even bother to pick up his book tonight, merely turned off the light and rolled over. She could see him well enough with the little light coming through the window. He seemed restless and she worried about him ever getting to sleep. He turned over once more, flinging his arm across the other pillow and she rose from her seat at the far end of the bed.

He couldn’t feel her, at least not as a cold spot but he had held her last night. She crawled in beside him and lay her head in the crook of his arm. He seemed to sigh and turn toward her, slipping finally into a more peaceful sleep.

Gail made a conscious decision not to analyze that and made herself comfortable against him. No hardship to be pressed against his body. She might not be a real comfort to him, but he certainly was to her.


Added 10/23/15 – some famous female ghosts – Spooky Girls…

Attack of the 14 Nights of Halloween – My Favorite Movie


Halloween 2015 bloghop

In the Attack of the 14 Nights of Halloween blog hop, we were asked our favorite Halloween Movie.

Favorite? That’s hard, but I finally narrowed it down to IT by Stephen King, and staring a super cast – Richard Thomas, Annette O’Toole, Harry Anderson, Tim Reid, John Ritter and of course Tim Curry. I don’t like clowns and this movie set that in concrete. When my son was given one of those clown dolls to learn how to button, snap, zip, tie a bow, I got it out of the house before he even knew about it.  I see the resemblance!clown doll

One of my favorite things about this movie is following the kids through growing up, none of them able to form a real working relationship or have children of their own until their promise from the past is kept. Let’s face it Stephen King knows his way around a scary story. Of course the book is richer than the movie, but they did a good job and now I want to pull out my DVD and watch it one more time.

Don’t foget the contest  Rafflecopter giveaway

It movie

You can also check out my Wraith’s Heart for a ghost story with a twist, and a little romance…

WraithsHeart_finalCover smaller