The Hot Seat 🔥 Olivia Chandler

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Greetings and welcome to The Hot Seat! This is a program where I get to take our favorite Heroes and Heroines and put them in the hot seat for some much desired insights and a bit of fun trivia. Results are bound to vary!

My guest today is Olivia Chandler from the Women’s Fiction (I would also say Romance): “In the Best Interest of The Child” and the highly anticipated sequel coming soon, “In The Best Interest of The Child: Family Matters” by Felicia Denise.

AC: Thank you for being here today, Olivia, I know you’re a very busy woman.

(Olivia waves)

Let me set the scene here, audience, Miss Chandler doesn’t think she’s the knock out of the courtroom, but I think a certain someone would disagree. At 5’7″, she has light brown eyes, long black hair and loves adding a pop of cheerful color to her business ensembles. It’s royal purple today.

AC: Okay, let’s get started. Olivia can you tell us a little about yourself? Where you’re from and how you ended up in Spring Falls, Minnesota as a child advocate attorney?

OC: I was a foster care kid. My family was in a car accident when I was a kid. My daddy was killed. My mom was, er… well, she was unable to care for me anymore. Having no other family, there was only one place for me to go… hell on earth. As it turns out, there was an inheritance from my daddy when I aged out of the foster care system. I went to college and became a child advocate attorney to keep children from going through the hell I did. (Looks down and lowers her voice) I wish it weren’t the case, but a lot of the abuse and neglect I went through is still with me.

AC: That must’ve been tough, Olivia, I’m sorry. I’m sure that didn’t make it easy to form any kind of relationship. What’s your view on romantic laiasons?

OC: I didn’t believe in them. What was the point? You allow someone into your heart… and they leave. Then I met Bruce. I don’t think that way anymore, but it’s still not easy to let someone in.

AC: Very understandable, but I’m curious, what was your first impression of Bruce?

OC: I thought Bruce was this huge annoying flirt. And adorable!

AC: Do you think Bruce has changed your previous views on relationships then, or confirmed them?

OC: Oh, he’s definitely changed them! I never saw relationships in my future and this big, brawny guy comes along and bumrushes his way into my life. (Flashes a big grin) I’m so glad he did. He’s so loving. Bruce taught me how to love.

AC: (grins right along with Olivia) Yes, he’s quite the charmer! Would you label yourself a social butterfly, family gal, career-oriented or a little of each?

OC: Career-oriented because of what I do. My actions directly impact a child’s future and I do not take that responsibility for granted, so it takes up a lot of my time. But… um, I would like to be a family gal too. I didn’t grow up with family and am lacking in family bonding skills, but Bruce’s gigantic tribe of a family are teaching me.

AC: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

OC: My past.

AC: You strike me as a very driven woman. What would you say your biggest mission or goal is in life?

OC: To keep children in homes where they’re loved and nurtured.

AC: That’s quite a commendable mission to have. If Bruce were sitting here, what do you think he’d say your best quality is and would you agree with him?

OC: He admires my passion for my work and my compassion for those less fortunate. I can’t say if agree or disagree. Would I be the same person without the childhood I had? My ‘qualities’ were shaped by circumstances. Not sure if that counts.

AC: I think it does, but we’ll move onto something a little more fun. Like compatibility in those spicier parts of a relationship. How would you describe your ideal lover?

OC: (grins real big) I had no clue until I met Bruce. I never had true relationships. More like friends-with-benefits and hook-ups. I didn’t allow myself to feel anything for my partners… they weren’t going to be around long enough.

Then… Bellamy. He’s giving… always putting me first. He’s playful, he doesn’t have that macho thing going on. There’s no dominating or submission… just mutual surrender.

AC: If Bruce could seduce you with his culinary skills, what dish would be the one to have you eating out of his hands hands, per se?

OC: Bellamy can make a Chicken Pot Pie that would upset most grandmothers! Light, flaky crust, tender chicken, veggies with just enough crunch. He totally kills it!

AC: (note to self, get recipe from Bruce when he comes in for his interview…) So, do you play any instruments, or sing? What kind of music do you listen to?

OC: I play a little piano and my singing is best left in the shower! I love orchestrations and arrangements – full orchestras and bands… no synthesized music. I like women with power voices like Anita Baker, Freda Payne, Gladys Knight, Dionne Warwick, Marilyn McCoo, Melissa Manchester, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, Adele, Tamia, Kelly Clarkson and old Mariah Carey. Not a fan of the kittenish, trying-to-stay-young Mariah. (Laughs) And I can tell by your face you’re wondering how I know a few of them, but my parents loved music. The clearest memories I have of our family life is the music.

AC: (smiles brightly) We have that in common. Fans are dying to know: Do you have any hidden tattoos or piercings?

OC: Nope!

AC: What’s the #1 item on your Bucket List?

OC: To drive a race car! And know what? Bellamy used to race cars! I see this happening… if he can get past worrying about me getting hurt.

AC: Now, that would be fun! If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be?

OC: The Ionian Islands off the coast of Greece. Trust me, I will get there!

AC: Outside of Bruce, who are the most important people in your life?

OC: Willis Benson, executor of my father’s estate, who fought for my inheritance even when he didn’t know where I was and Margot Schultz, my office manager… and friend.

AC: I love Margot. What is your greatest regret?

OC: I’d rather not answer that, AC, if you don’t mind.

AC: Of course not. How about one of your guilty pleasures, instead?

OC: A big pitcher of Cranberry-Lime Mojitos and several hours of black and white movies pre-1960. I love them all – the gangster flicks, war movies, musicals… and the love stories. ‘An Affair to Remember’ is my favorite.

AC: What is the one thing in this world you would never do?

OC: Turn my back on a child. Any child. I know what it feels like to… to feel worthless, unimportant, and unloved. I will never do that to a child.

AC: Are you keeping a secret? Can you share it with us, we won’t tell?

OC: (Laughs) No, I learned my lesson about secrets. But I do believe Bellamy has one. He doesn’t want me to sell my house, but keeps talking about us ‘living together’…so we’ll see.

AC: (tries not to squeal like a fangirl) What would you do to win the heart of Bruce Bellamy?

OC: That’s just it, AC, I didn’t have to do anything. Since the day we met, he’s known who I was inside… even when I didn’t. He said I made his heart restless and hungry. (Grins brightly again) Isn’t that hot? I was damaged and he still wanted me. He once told me love doesn’t heal everything, but it can hold you up while you heal. (Looks down at her hands) I don’t know where I’d be without Bruce. It only took acceptance on my part to get him, but I’d fight the devil himself to keep Bruce.

AC: I’d second that, Miss Chandler, he’s definitely one worth fighting for! (Turns to audience) Thank you for being with us today and if you haven’t grabbed your copy of “In The Best Interest of The Child”, please take the opportunity to do so now with the link below. It’s everything you could hope for in a book and then some; real, emotional, hilarious, charming, heartfelt, steamy and best yet, there’s more to come!

 

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Severely injured in an accident that forever changed her life, 10-year-old Olivia becomes another faceless, underserved child in foster care. With no time to mourn or grieve, the young girl is easy prey for uncaring social workers and ambivalent foster families.

Olivia quickly learns to hold her tongue and mask her emotions. Even when exposed to neglect, bullying, and assault, no one seems to care. Holding fast to the teachings of her late father, Olivia ages out of the system broken, but no longer a victim.

Now a successful child advocate attorney, Olivia is a passionate voice for children. However, a routine case assignment by the court plunges Olivia back into the trauma of her childhood. If she doesn’t face her demons, a child will be sent into foster care, and Olivia will lose the only chance at love she’s ever had…or wanted.

Foster care for her young client is not an option. But Olivia’s emotional scars run even deeper than she realized. Reconciling with her past means Olivia must confront the one woman she blames for her battered soul.

A woman who has no idea who Olivia is.

Free on Kindle Unlimited!

 

Also Available in Print!

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My Review ♥ Free, a novella

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My Review

Title: Free, a novella
Author: Felicia Denise
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Length: Novella
Rating: 5 ‘s

I first started reading “Free” on Felicia Denise’s website and like all of her readers, I was captured, pulled right into the highs and lows of the main character’s story. Lennie and her memories are so real, I felt as if she’d taken me by the hand so I could walk beside her, a silent witness to the ‘walk-through’ of her life. I was so happy when the author decided to turn this into a novella and even more thrilled with the promise for more!

Though shorter than I wanted it to be, don’t let the size of this *Ahem* prequel, fool you. It is cleverly stuffed to the point of overflowing with emotions; good, bad, ugly and joyful. So, stick some Kleenex in your pocket, grab a glass of wine and meet Lennie on the threshold of the Porter House on Linden Lane, because this is not a read. It’s an experience.

Lenore ‘Lennie’ Porter is every woman. She’s not perfect or overly flawed, she’s just human. A loving daughter, supportive wife, successful entrepreneur and dedicated mother. Her story is all about the joys, hardships, tragic loses, mistakes, fears, illnesses, frights and turning points that brought her to the present. Simultaneously, it’s about those little moments within the bigger ones, that become the linchpins of future outcomes. Those moments of regret, revelations, tough choices and self-honesty.

The memories she shares are full of family bonds, endearing friends, and a cowardly bully of a husband. Most revolve around her three sons and range from laugh-out-loud humorous, to heartwarming, to downright heart-wrenching.

I honestly can’t say much more without completely spoiling it, but if you are a reader who enjoys learning all about another’s life through their eyes, then you will love Free! This is not a romance – though, I am really, really hoping that will come next – and it’s certainly not a fairytale. This is one woman’s journey back to self, through the realistic obstacles life throws in her way. Or perhaps, it’s merely the beginning of a discovery of the woman she’s hoping to become…I’ll leave that up to you to decide.

In a final note about this novella, I can’t end without expressing that Felicia Denise’s style is such that even her antagonists don’t get to just exit stage left without evoking some kind of empathy from her readers. To take a clear picture of bad and turn it into something a little more human is sly, underhanded and brilliant. It’s a true talent to nudge the emotional table off center for the reader with such a brief insight. Yet, in less than a page, it happened. You’ll just have to read it to believe me!

Only 99¢!amazon-logo_transparent

Or Free!   Kindle Unlimited button

#MusicMonday

Anne-Marie

Anne-Marie

 

I confess, I’m always on the look out for new British artists to fall in love with, but I wasn’t on the hunt when I found Anne-Marie. I love Sean Paul and hadn’t heard anything new from him in forever, so when I saw his name tagged to this music video by Clean Bandit, of course I had to watch it! The song, “Rockabye” also featured Anne-Marie, who’d I’d never heard of before and whom I never in a million years would’ve pegged as being British. She has a very Island sound and style – Bahamian, not British Isles.

A little research turned up that she wasn’t new to the music scene at all, but had done quite a bit with the English band, Rudimental, prior to going solo for a second time – and having it pay off in major ways. Along with all of her hit singles, she also toured with Ed Sheeran, so you can only imagine the kind of exposure that brought her. They have a list of behind the scenes videos from that tour that are definitely worth a watch – quite entertaining!

I couldn’t choose a video for this post, but instead found a live performance of Anne-Marie that covers three of my favorite songs by her – which is why I’ve included this preamble, rather than lyrics. I also included a hilarious video of her calling a list of fans who won a contest surrounding the release of her hit single, “Alarm.” Enjoy! 🙂

I do not own any rights to these videos, songs or lyrics. All rights remain with the artists and their respective agents. No copyright infringement intended.

Fun little fact I just learned. My favorite song by Anne-Marie is “Karate” and according to Wikipedia, she has not only been practicing Shotokan since she was little, she’s won a handful of Gold and Silver medals in a few major Karate competitions. Talk about being multi-talented! #Respect

 

Top 10 Things I Learned From Watching Deadpool

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OMG, I’m FREE… for now. Just wrapped up excessive copy editing, so I’m looking forward to getting back to actually writing and Camp NaNo starting on Saturday! To celebrate, I’m going crazy fun with this post – which means, it’s not for kids. In fact, it’s not even for most adults, so here’s that pesky advisory thingy:

Warning: This post is about Deadpool. Take everything you know to be inappropriate and multiply it by the number of pock marks in Wade Wilson’s face.

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Top 10 Things I Learned From Watching Deadpool

#10: Unicorns are sexy. Just look at that phallic shaped growth standing fully erect in the center of their foreheads… Wade couldn’t keep his eyes off it. Wonder if he was thinking about Spidey…? Awwww, the one-sided bromance lives on.

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#9: Despite being trapped for an entire fight sequence in the same machine that rendered Wade Wilson “unf**kable” in a matter of seconds, Vanessa never even gets so much as a zit. Apparently, it only works on men’s skin. Maybe they should moisturize more often?

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#8: Masks that convey facial expressions should be the new industry standard.

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#7: Giant superheroes comprised of indestructible metal with a voice like the Terminator, can, indeed, have their man cards revoked.

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#6: Rigor Mortis is instantaneous when handcuffs are involved.

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#5: You can actually pay for a cab ride with high-five’s, multiple times, as long as you first give the driver the worst relationship advice possible that ends in an accidental fatality. Otherwise, they bill you later.

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#4: Negasonic Teenage Warhead is the absolute number one, record-breaking, top of the charts superhero name EVER invented and the person responsible should be promoted to the top of the Fantastic 4 franchise, because they’re now the only one’s who have the cool-power to possibly redeem what little respectable face Fox studios managed to leave our poor superheros after defiling them with their…Foxfuckidness.

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#3: Best friends can be royal dicks.

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#2: Knowing how to spell is crucial to every punchline.

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#1: “O, Canada!” can be conveniently turned into a swear word when one is in pain, and would simultaneously offend an entire nation, if it hadn’t in fact been issued by a Canadian actor portraying a Canadian character. Nice save, Ryan!

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Ooh, speaking of America vs. Canada – Given all we know about our own stereotypes – you know, how Canadians are super nice and Americans are like that one kid you never want your kids to play with… Why is it that we have someone like Captain America and they get Deadpool? Is this the mysterious balance in the Force Yoda’s always going on about?

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Whew! That was a lot of pent up inappropriateness… guess it’s time to write another Hell on Earth novella! 😀

Not-so-little fineprint: I took these pictures off the internet without any intention of infringing upon anyone’s copyrights, so if you’d like me to take them down just ask and I will do so immediately. Thanks!

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#TacoTuesday

And we’re back for week 4 of building our book tacos. Check out the original post HERE for what this is all about and how you can join in. Remember, it’s never too late, just leave a pingback in the comments so I can read your post! Now, for the next layer…

Writing Menu

Cheese: Share a scene where one of your characters interacts with some kind of camera, photograph or video for any reason. If there are none, then share one of their funniest moments or dialogue pieces.

Pulling his classic beauty into the parking lot of Shades Soirée, Matt eyed the modern building with scrutiny. “Looks high end,” he remarked, as they climbed out. “Not very busy, though.”

He counted a total of five cars on their way to the entrance, which was locked.

“Nightclub only,” Zach tapped the smoky glass to the left of the doors displaying the club’s hours of operation.

“We only need to talk to staff right now, anyway.”

They found the service entrance for deliveries around the left side of the building and pressed the call button.

“Yeah?” A male voice crackled over the intercom a second later.

“MCPD, is there a manager on site?” Matt asked.

Silence followed. Zach elbowed him and thrust his chin upward. “Smile.”

Matt pulled his badge off his belt and stuck it right into the camera lens. “Cheese.”

~ Shades Soirée (Matron City Trilogy #2)

Readers Menu

Cheese: Name a favorite book/series that had to do with photography, acting, reporting or any other camera-related theme – OR – where the humor was so off the charts you found yourself ‘cheesing’ through 90% of it.

CoverNakedInDeathJDRobbI either can’t recall or have never actually read a book where the main character or theme dealt with cameras. However, one of my favorite series, the In Death series by J.D. Robb (aka Nora Roberts) has a sub-character who makes an appearance or two in almost every book, because she’s the only reporter the main character, Eve Dallas, trusts. Not only is Nadine Furst a memorable supporting character, her and Eve’s banter is always humorous, so I think that qualifies.

If you haven’t ventured into Nora Roberts’ alter ego, J.D. Robb, with her In Death series, I highly recommend it. You get the same amazing writing style she’s known for with a lot more edge, steamier sex scenes and a full cast of characters you’ll fall head over heels for. If you like crime novels, murder mysteries and endless snarky banter, these are definitely books for you. Although each novel is a stand alone, and each homicide case is different, I highly recommend starting from the beginning with Naked In Death, because the series deals with the same characters, whose lives and relationships continue to evolve with each new book.

Don’t forget – If you’re reading this, you’re officially tagged!

 

Next week’s ingredient: Lettuce!

Lettuce for the writer: Anytime money was used, stolen, given, exchanged or was otherwise the main topic of conversation in a significant way.

Lettuce for the reader: Share a favorite book/series where money played a significant role in dialogue, the story line, or was used as a thrilling plot twist. (The more unique the situation, the bigger the cool points).

Life After? Blogs…

 

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It’s strange to think about how quickly the PC has advanced in such a short time.  I remember writing everything by hand, waiting for the mailman, reading paperback novels and visiting with my friends face-to-face.

We weren’t allowed to leave the house without a quarter in our pocket for a payphone, in case of an emergency.

I used to spend days and nights with my nose in a book, or frantically scribbling away in one of the thousands of notebooks still stored in a Rubbermaid container.  We had a Brother Word Processor once, it was like the next best thing to sliced bread, because you could switch out the ‘font’ wheels and save everything on a floppy disk.  Well, about 4 MB of data, anyway.

I own a typewriter. Still.

So what would I do, if there were no computers?

The same thing I did before there were computers.  I would live less vicariously, see my friends and family more often, get more fresh air. I’d really miss the humorous Meme’s and talking regularly with family in Wales with no International calling fees… Genealogy research would be a lot more difficult and spendy, I would definitely miss the ease that Ancestry and Family Search has provided with digitizing records.

Also, since my novels are only sold in eBook format, I’m not sure I’d be a published author anymore, so I may have to start from scratch… track down a literary agent and pay more of my royalties to a traditional print house.  That wouldn’t be very ideal, but it could happen, and that’s the point…

Things might be less convenient, but Life could and would still happen without computers, tablets, cellphones, etc.  It was happening 20 years ago without them and strangely, the world did not end because our BFF couldn’t get a hold of us to tell us about what she’d overhead that girl from Chem saying about the guy we were crushing on right away in a text, snapchat, KIK or Tweet.. she called my house phone and left a message on my answering machine to call her back ASAP – which was HOURS later – and we survived.  True story.

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Greedy Little Bastard

 

That’s what you’ve reduced me to

I’m gobbling up days, hoarding time

I’m closed off in my cave, Do Not Disturb

No calls, Caffeine Drip

I’m inching closer to the escape hatch

One critically constructed convergence at a time

You can’t keep me, but I’ve got you chained to the screen

It’s not you, and it sure in the hell ain’t me…

It’s that two-bit floozy I call my muse

The moment you’re revealed, she’s long gone

So, there will be no previews, no teasers, no seedy peep shows

You’ll sit there and gimme all you got

Until the binds of Avarice have come undone

And that fickle hussy’s on the run.

#amwriting

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