March 26, 2012

Dark Night of the Moon - Keta Diablo

Hello Anna Kathryn and friends,

Thanks so much for hosting me on your lovely blog. I'm happy to be here to tell you a little about one of my latest westerns, Dark Night of the Moon

The novel is the sequel to Holding On To Heaven, another romantic western I wrote several years ago. But DNOTM is not only a western; it's also based on Native American legend and lore and a wolf shifter lurks within the pages. 

Here's the blurb for the book:
Creed Gatlin flees to Arizona intent on eradicating the haunting memories of his brother’s wife. Brand Gatlin, presumed dead, resurfaces after a long absence and with his re-emergence, the destinies of those he loves is altered forever.

In a land rife with war and danger, Sage must travel to the village of her husband’s People. There, she is reunited with Crooked Back, the ancient healer. On the long trek back to Full Circle, devious plots are underfoot and peril lurks around every corner for Sage, Lauren and Peter Pa.

Dark Night of the Moon will take you on an unforgettable journey of war, violence, overwhelming grief, and finally, love.
And here's a little information about Wolf shape-shifting and mythology:

Why do you think we're so fascinated by shape shifting -- the ability of man (woman) to turn into animals? I'm really intrigued with wolf-shifters and that's one of the reasons I included Native American mythology about the wolf in Dark Night of the Moon.

The wolf in this story is a gray wolf. I spent considerable time learning about this species and dug out some interesting facts you might enjoy. The gray wolf (Canis lupus) is also known as the Arctic wolf, common wolf, Mexican wolf, Plains wolf, timber wolf, and Tundra wolf. At one time, they were the world's most widely distributed mammal, but they've become extinct now in much of Western Europe, Mexico and the US. Their packs have been reduced by almost one-third over the years because we've been led to believe they prey on livestock and humans. In actuality, it's very rare for humans to be attacked by a wolf.

Native Americans have profound respect for the wolf. To several tribes the wolf was known as a protective spirit or totem. They viewed the wolf as a wise fellow hunter to be respected and admired. Those who could shift into the wolf were known as limmikin (or yenaloosi) in many tribes. The Navajo are best known for their shifter beliefs. They called men who could morph into wolves skinwalkers, or yennadlooshi which means "He goes on all fours."

According to Navajo tradition skinwalkers look physically different from normal people – the main difference is their eyes—large and glowing, even in daylight. It’s believed if someone looks a skinwalker in the eyes, the creature can absorb a person and steal their skin. They could also read minds and lure people from their homes and into the woods by imitating the voices and cries of loved ones.

Examples of the wolf appearing throughout Native American mythology include the following.

*  The Eskimos spoke of an old woman, Qisaruatsiaq, who was abandoned and forced to live by herself. Eventually, she turned into a wolf.

*  The Sioux called the wolf shunk manitu tanka, meaning animal that looks like a dog but is a powerful spirit.

* Cheyenne medicine men rubbed warrior arrows against wolf fur to bring better luck in hunting.

*  The Nootka celebrated spiritual ties to the wolf. When someone died, they thought they could bring a person back to life by wearing wolf clothing.

*  The Cherokee would not kill a wolf, believing the dead wolf's siblings would exact revenge. They learned to walk like a wolf to ward off frostbite to their feet.

*  The Crow dressed in wolf skins to hunt.

* The Mandan displayed wolf tails on their moccasins, signs of success in battle.

*  Women of the Hidatsa tribe rubbed their bellies with wolf skin to alleviate difficult childbirth.

* The Cree believed divine wolves visited earth when the northern lights shone during winter.

*  The Ahtena would prop dead wolves up, sometimes feeding them ceremonial meals.

* Chippewa myths tell of wolves supplying humans with food and hides.

* The Delaware tribe thought a change in weather might be announced through a wolf's howl.

Lakota Woman (Sioux) Myth

A woman was hurt and left behind by her people. She ran out of food and nearly starved, but came upon a wolf den and crawled inside. At first the members of the pack were suspicious and afraid of her, but eventually they grew to like her. When they brought food to their pups they shared it with her.

Eventually she was strong enough to snare rabbits and help with the hunting. She stayed with the pack for many years.

One day the oldest wolf smelled humans coming, and strangely the woman did too. They were her own people and she realized she must return to them.

She reunited herself with the village very slowly and brought with her the skills of the wolf. She knew wolf talk and developed a keen sense of smell, allowing her to predict bad weather far in advance. She could also alert the village when game or other humans came around.
* * *
Hope you’re having a wonderful 2012 so far! If you read Dark Night of the Moon or Holding On To Heaven, please leave a review on Amazon. A few short sentences would be great!

Again, my sincere thanks for hosting me on your blog,


Keta is a multi-published author of paranormal and historical romance and gay fiction. In 2009, her erotic romance Decadent Deceptions was a finalist in the RWA Molly contest. In 2010, Keta's entry Phoenix Rising finaled in the Scarlet Boa contest and in 2011 Keta's acclaimed paranormal shifter, Where The Rain is Made, was nominated by Authors After Dark for a Bookie Award and by Deep In The Heart of Romance for Best Romance of the Year.

Many of her books, including her gay fiction series CROSSROADS, have won numerous awards: Top Reviewer's Pick, Recommended Read and Best Book of the Month.

If you'd like to know more about Keta and her latest releases, she haunts the Net here:

March 23, 2012

Saturday's Salacious Suggestions-Erotica Romance

 Written something HOT?  Looking for something HOT? Well you've come to the right place.

If you have an Erotica Romance, just post your blurb and buy links in the comments section.  And if you need something to spring up your romance....check out these HOT, HOT stories.

**Any Erotica is welcomed to be posted --- contemporary, historical, paranormal, whatever!

March 17, 2012

Saturday's Salacious Suggestions: Regency

Lord and Lady Love request the honor of your Regency at Chatting with Anna Kathryn....just post your blurb and buy links in the comment section.  Anna Kathryn loves Regency romances and is looking forward to find some new stories!

March 15, 2012

Romance Through the Ages Writing Contest Deadline Extended

*Permission given to forward and post on blogs, loops and website*

The Hearts Through History chapter of RWA has extended its deadline for its Romance Through the Ages Writing contest from the Ides of March (March 15) to March 20. Our website was down all weekend, and we want to make sure you have the opportunity to get those entries in.

The contest is open to both published and unpublished writers. Entries must be original works of Historical Romance or Romantic Historical Fiction not contracted for publication by the contest deadline of March 15, 2012. We are low on entries for all categories, which are:
       • Ancient/Medieval/Renaissance
       • Georgian/Regency/Victorian
       • Colonial/Western/Civil War
       • Post-Victorian/World War 2
       • Time Travel/Historical Paranormal
       • Historical Erotic

For more information, including our final round judges and cost, go to:

For general questions about the contest, contact the Contest Chairwoman Keena Kincaid at

March 14, 2012

Wednesday's Chow: Baked French Toast

I invited this week's guest, Susan Muller to submit a recipe for Wednesday's Chow, but she replied that "no one would want one of her recipes. However, send my your baked french toast one."  So I wrote back, well, great, now I have to come up with a recipe, and btw, here's the baked french toast one.  Susan sent me another email. "Post this one. They'll love it."

I'm sure I've posted this before, but it is a really good, easy recipe and the few times I've made it for brunch, it's gobbled up.  With Easter just a few weeks away, I figured I would post it again and ya'll can plan to make it for the Easter Bunny crowd.
Baked French Toast
  • 1 (1 pound) loaf French bread, cut diagonally in 1 inch slices
  • 8 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1 1/3 cups brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1.  Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange the slices of bread in the bottom. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, milk, cream, vanilla and cinnamon. Pour over bread slices, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
2.  The next morning, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a small saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar and corn syrup; heat until bubbling. Pour over bread and egg mixture.
3.  Bake in preheated oven, uncovered, for 40 minutes. 

March 12, 2012

Cowboys vs Cops: from the same mold?

By Susan Muller

I have read several blogs on Anna Kathryn’s website about society’s love for cowboys. My question is, why do we have such a fondness for these western heroes?

Is it the horses?  Horses are beautiful creatures, without a doubt. They are also large, often mean, a tremendous amount of work to care for, and their upkeep is expensive. Nor do you smell like roses when you finish riding one.

Is it the tight jeans? Well, duh.

Is it the characteristics they embody?  We think of cowboys as loyal, fair, honest, trustworthy, and protective of others.

In The Secrets on Forest Bend, my hero, Adam Campbell, was born and raised in Houston, but he’s definitely not a cowboy. I suspect he could ride a horse if he needed to, and if it’s rodeo time here in Houston, he might pull a pair of boots from the back of his closet.

It’s in his chosen profession that he resembles our idea of a cowboy. He’s a police officer, and that means he’s sworn to serve and protect. In this excerpt from The Secrets on Forest Bend, Adam quickly switches into cop mode.

Excerpt set-up:

His new girlfriend, Jillian, has an apartment above the gun store she owns, and they’ve come downstairs to look for something in the storeroom. Her assistant, Clara, comes to work early and puts her baby to sleep in the storeroom while she prepares to open the store. When an assailant enters, Adam doesn’t hesitate to face the armed man as he tries to protect the two women and the baby.

Adam and Jillian were in the back room with their arms around each other when the front door slammed open. He lifted his head. “It’s too early for customers, isn’t it?” Jillian’s closed shop was beginning to feel like a major department store.
“Maybe Cara went outside to get something from her car.” Jillian looked toward the front of the store, but a wall was in the way.
Adam motioned for Jillian to wait as he stepped quietly to the door. He heard voices, but couldn’t understand them. Kneeling down so his head was near the floor, he looked quickly around the corner, then snapped his head back.
“I can see Cara. Some man is holding her arm and pointing a gun at her.”
The man was stocky and had a good start on the beer belly that would most likely define him in later years. His sandy hair was disheveled, and his face had the pasty look of someone who spent too much time indoors.
“I’ll bet it’s her husband, Trevor. She’s gone to a lot of trouble to keep him from finding her.”
Adam glanced around the storage area. “Do you have a weapon back here? There must be something with all these guns.”
“I’ve got guns, but they’re not loaded. All the ammunition is on the other side of the room and to get to it we’d have to cross in front of the door. There’s a loaded gun under the counter, just below the cash-register, but he’d see you if you went out there. Did you bring your weapon?”
“No, I was trying to appear innocent and trustworthy. I even left my ankle holster at home.” He could kick himself for that decision. The first time in years he’d left home without a weapon and look what happened. His boss had better not find out about this.
“I’ll go out. It’s my store. It’ll seem normal.” Jillian started for the door, but he grabbed her arm.
“You have to take the baby and go out the back door. Take my car and get away from here. You can call for help on my radio. Wait for me at the IHop on the feeder road.”
“We discussed this. I’m not a hot-house flower. I can take care of myself. I don’t need you to protect me.”
“Damn it, for once will you listen to me?” He held both her shoulders. His voice was low, but intense. “I’m not trying to protect you. I’m trying to protect the baby.” Okay, I am trying to protect you, but I have enough sense not to say it out loud. “You know as well as I do that once he starts shooting, the bullets could go anywhere. These walls aren’t any protection. The baby could get hurt easily. You have to get her out of here before he realizes where she is.”
“I don’t want to leave you.”
“Now you know how I feel about you helping bring Marshall down. You have to leave, now. I’ll call you when it’s safe.” He kissed her quickly and handed her his keys.
As soon as Jillian and the baby were out the door, Adam smoothed down his hair and buttoned his shirt. There wasn’t anything he could do about his bare feet.
“Hey, man,” he said as he stepped out of the storeroom. “What’s going on?”
“Who the fuck are you?” The man jerked Cara around to face him.
“I’m Adam. I work here. Who are you?”
“You work here, uh? Well, you look like you just got out of bed. What have you been doing with my wife?”
Adam looked down and saw that his shirt was buttoned crooked. “Nothing, man. I just met her five minutes ago.” He tried to ease closer to the register, but Trevor had the gun pointed at him.
“That’s a likely story. She’s such a slut she wouldn’t care how long she’d known you. Anyway, she’s supposed to be working for some woman.”
“J. R.’s not in yet. This is my first day, so I don’t know what’s going on.” His face was slack, but his eyes never stopped moving as he judged the distance from his position to the gun under the register. Which could he reach quicker, the gun or Trevor?

What about you? Who are your heroes and what qualities to they exhibit?

The Secrets on Forest Bend is available from:, Amazon, Barnes & Noble.

Susan Muller is a native Houstonian who can ride a horse if necessary, but prefers a sports car. She loves to read, write, travel, and eat Tex-Mex. Follow her at

March 10, 2012

Saturday's Salacious Suggestions: Historical Westerns

Today's Salacious Suggestions brings you Historical Westerns. If you have one in print, please add your blurb and buy links in the comments sections.  If you're looking for something good to read, check out these sexy cowboys and their cowgirls!

March 8, 2012

The Hero's Journey and the Mythological Woods Workshop OPEN

This class opened on March 5th, but so far, only one lecture has been giving. So, you can still join without being way behind!  During this month-long online class, you'll learn about The Hero's Journey and how apply it to your writing.

Learn more HERE. Class is online via Hearts Through History RWA and there is very little homework. Mostly, it's lectures that you can download and read over later, again and again.

Join NOW.

Anna Kathryn

March 7, 2012

Spinach Quiche without crust

This week's guest, Toni Noel shares her Spinach Quiche recipe with us.  It's been a few years since I've made a quiche, but this one looks goods.  I'll need to make it soon.

Cook time: 30 minutes Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes 6 servings

1 10 ounce package frozen, chopped spinach, thawed and drained
3 cups (mostly Muenster) grated cheese
1 chopped onion
5 beaten eggs
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray a 9 inch pie pan to prevent sticking.
Place a large skillet over medium heat. Pour in oil and heat.
Add onions. Stir until onions soften. Do not brown.
Stir in spinach. Cook until moisture evaporates.
Turn off heat under skillet.
Beat eggs in large bowl.
Add cheese, salt, and pepper.
Blend in spinach mixture. Scrape into pie pan.
Bake about 30 minutes, until eggs set.
Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes.
Cut into 6 wedges and enjoy.

March 5, 2012

Buck's Dilemma: Do Love and Money Mix

By Toni Noel

I've always enjoyed a love of horses, and several of my novels have horses in them. The cowboy hero of Restored Dreams rides a black horse or drives a well-kept 1932 Ford V-8 pickup. When the urge to travel hits him he loads his horse and truck in his fifth-wheel toy hauler hitched to a shinny Peter Built cab and heads to his next stop.
You're probably thinking this guy is loaded. He is, but you'd never know it talking to him. He'd rather talk about his rodeo days and show off his championship belt buckle, but a sadness shades Buck's eyes as he speaks of roping and riding events he can no longer enter. After breaking his back, he no longer competes.
He has other things on his mind now, like his plan to help the folks in Lakeview, California who were cheated out of their life savings by his grandfather. Yes, the old man was a fast talking traveling salesman who absconded with all the money invested in his railroad scheme. Buck's primary goal in life is to make the lives of the good folks in Lakeview easier, one replaced roof or floor at a time.
He enjoys spending his unwanted inheritance this way, and if he winds up giving his heart to Treasure Montgomery while he restores her run-down Victorian house to its original beauty -- well he wouldn't mind at all. The softhearted teacher has goals, too, goals he'd like to see her achieve.
First he has to win her trust. His helping out with her equine therapy classes is a step in the right direction. He never dreamed his dressage lessons as a boy would come in handy on a ranch. Somebody in Treasure's past did the little lady wrong, Buck suspects. She's downright skittish around men, but unlike him, has no fear of snakes.
Now, if she'd just let him replace her roof the way he wants to, he'd be a happy man. Why must Treasure insist on paying her own way, when he has more money than one man could ever spend in a lifetime and a burning desire to do her repairs correctly. Prideful woman. Why won't she accept his help?

Restored Dreams Blurb:

Her roof leaks, the plumbing, too, but on a teacher's salary Treasure Montgomery can barely pay the taxes on her property, so the list of needed repairs to the grand Victorian house she inherited from the aunt who raised her continues to grow.

Treasure surrounds herself with other people's children, seeking some fulfillment in an otherwise empty life until she meets Buck. A retired rodeo rider turned philanthropist, Buck willingly donates his labor to anyone who needs a helping hand, spending his father's ill-gotten fortune to make amends for his father's bad deeds, but Treasure wants no part of his charity.

Buck persists. Treasure resists, and he turns to subterfuge to get around the obstacles she throws in his path. She learns the truth and fears she might lose her house to Buck. How wrong can a woman be about the man with whom she's fallen in love?

Excerpt: Restored Dreams

Teaching at Lakeview Middle School is a breeze. Holding this Victorian house together is what's sapping my energy, Treasure Montgomery thought as she approached her ranch east of San Diego.
She stepped into her kitchen after a long day in the classroom, turned her back on the paint peeling off the hundred-year-old cabinets, and reached for The Thrifties.
First things first. I may as well get this over with.
The unread mail could wait. Finding another repairman to finish her upstairs bath repairs couldn't. Not when the man she'd hired to do the work had ripped up her floor, then quit.
She started making calls.
Nine calls later, she was no nearer finding a handyman she'd trust to do the work. Some of the men she talked to had even laughed at her.
"You'll pay what?"
"Try me again next fall."
"Get real, lady."
What am I going to do?
At the sound of a vehicle turning down her drive, Treasure glanced up. Who did she know who drove an antique truck?
Through the kitchen curtains -- those needed replacing, too -- she watched a tall man unfold and step out of the carefully-maintained blue truck. His jean-clad legs, like parallel train tracks, were slim and straight. A wide-brimmed Stetson hat hid his face, but she had no trouble making out wide shoulders that narrowed to the belt slung low at his waist.
He was billboard handsome, and not anyone she knew, but he'd look great on her horse. Make that any horse.
Experiencing the usual uneasiness the sudden appearance of a stranger brought, Treasure froze, debating her options as she stared at the closed back door.
Lock it and pretend no one is home?
No. Aunt Bee did that. Not me.
The sound of footsteps crossing her porch caused Treasure's heartbeat to stutter, then drum in her ears.
The man's knock, as cocky as his walk, rattled the door.
Wouldn't do to let the stranger know she'd cautiously watched his approach, Aunt Bee would have advised. Treasure patted her hair, making certain her hair tie still kept her long black hair neat, then waited a moment longer before answering the knock.
"Yes?" she said, opening the door a crack.
"Miss Montgomery?" the man said and removed his hat.
Hmm. Tall. Bushy brown eyebrows overshadowed his eyes but overall, she liked his looks, although he could use a haircut. Chestnut curls hid his ears and the back collar of his denim work shirt.
She nodded.
"Evening, Ma'am. My name's Buck. Angela Turner called to say you got yourself in some kind of bind and could use my help."
"Never trust a man with a Southern drawl," Aunt Bee always warned, an Aunt Bee-ism Treasure wanted to heed, but this man's mellow way of speaking touched something deep inside, warming her and almost making her smile.
Treasure sighed. "I'm sorry, there's been a misunderstanding. You see, I teach with Angela and happened to mention that the man I'd hired quit. She never should have called you. I told her I didn't like the idea of hiring a stranger to work on my house, no matter how highly you come recommended."
"Appreciate that," he said, grinning.
"You're the carpenter who did the Community Hall roof?"
"The church, too," he said with a grin guaranteed to make women swoon.
Not Treasure. Her first night out with a devastatingly handsome man, he'd destroyed her trust. Now she was immune to good looking men, but apparently not immune to this man's softly-spoken drawl.
Watch yourself.
Buck cleared his throat. "Nice rural setting for a Victorian house. Now, if you'll just show me where--"
Unnerved, she tugged on her long hair. "No, I-I can't do that, but thank you. I've lived in Lakeview almost all my life."
Her stammered words rocked him back on his heels and he cocked his head. "It's gonna be kinda hard to estimate the work involved if you won't let me come in."
Now she felt foolish. She hesitated a moment longer, then stepped aside. "You're right. It's just that I don't have much money, and Hank, the man I'd hired, came--"
"Cheap?" he finished with another wide grin and ducked entering the house. "I understand he quit."
As he straightened, Treasure gulped. Beware men who--
No. No more isms. This is my house now.
Aunt Bee hated men.
Even after what happened to me, I don't.
Right or wrong, a man deserved the chance to prove himself.
Even Buck?
His wide shoulders seemed to dwarf her kitchen, and her.
In need of reassurance, Treasure patted her hair again. "It's the master bath, upstairs. I guess it won't hurt to just let you see."
"No, ma'am."
The way he said ma'am made her feel like a queen watching her favorite knight paying homage on bended knee, a sensation she'd never experienced before.
"This way." Shoving the uninvited image to the far recesses of her mind, she led him to the stairs, then started up, suddenly self-conscious, feeling his eyes on...
Not my hair, my butt.
"I'm afraid the hall outside the bathroom is a mess," she murmured, turning sideways to direct his attention elsewhere as she reached the top step.
No, no. This is worse. Now his eyes are on my--
"That's understandable," he said with a knowing grin. "You'd have no use for me if everything was in perfect repair, now would you, ma'am?"
Treasure laughed as she reached the landing and turned right. "True."
"Hmm. Nice view."
She clenched her fists. How dare he?
She swung around, prepared to boot Buck down the stairs for his unwelcome remark and discovered him peering out the landing window at the barn and the rolling hills beyond.
Oh. That view.
"Is that all yours?"
"I own everything to the base of those hills."
"Nice," he repeated, striding toward her.
"Yes, it is," she agreed, scurrying ahead of him down the hall. And you're even taller than I thought.

Restored Dreams is available for download here:

Or here:
Or from your favorite eBook store.

Visit Toni Noel a her website or her blog.

March 3, 2012

Saturday's Salacious Suggestions: Young Adult

Got a Young Adult Romance you want to share?  Here's your chance.  Just post your blurb and buy links in the comments sections, then promote this blog.  Any and all Young Adult Romances are welcomed.

Here's the coming attractions for Saturday's Salacious Suggestions:
Mar. 10 - Historical Western
Mar. 17 - Regency
Mar. 24 - Sci-Fi
Mar. 31 - Erotica (historical or contemporary)