Lemme tell you a story…actually, lemme tell you a few stories.
Once upon a time, I had an online marketing coach. I wasn’t willing to change a few things just to sell books, so the business partnership came to a standstill, but I’ve never forgotten what this person said to me one day. We had a conversation that went something like this:
Coach: “What is your target audience?”
Me: “Well, that’s obvious. I write for women, about women. I’m targeting WOMEN.”
Coach: “That’s too broad an audience. You must narrow it down. White, black, Christian, young, old…”
Me: “Hell, no. I don’t discriminate.”
And there you have it, folks. I DON’T DISCRIMINATE. Is the coach right? Probably. But I’m not changing my goals, I’m not selling myself short, just to top the charts. I have a message I am trying to get out there…for WOMEN, be they young, old, white, black, purple, Christian, Pagan, or Atheist.
My message is “be strong, be united, be yourself, be women, and be proud”.
I’ve refused to narrow down my target audience. I have white heroines, Hispanic heroines, African-American heroines. I have heroines with blond hair, black hair. I have orphan heroines, young heroines, old heroines. I have heroines in the military. I have heroines that like men and heroines that prefer their own sex. I have white women attracted to African-American men, and vice versa.
I have penned three IR romances and one multicultural. Plotting to Win is an African-American woman and a Latino male. Afterburn is an African-American man and a Caucasian woman. Fine Like Wine by my nasty alter ego is a Latina and an African-American woman. A Healing Love features a white woman and a Latino man.
Why? ‘Cause I wanted them to be, because we love who love and that’s that. And people love all kinds. We ARE all kinds. We aren’t colors or races. We are people…in love.
Which brings me to story number two:
A fellow author friend of mine wrote an IR romance that released a few months ago. It earned a scathing review, which I read… Now, I’m not against bad reviews. We don’t all like the same books and that’s not the issue here, but what shocked me was a comment like this: “Why do we have a Hawaiian man and an African-American woman? What is the point?”
Hello? Would you approach an IR couple in the grocery store and ask them something like that? “Excuse me, but I’m wondering why ya’ll are together? I mean, what’s the point? Look. You’re really dark, and you’re Hawaiian or something…is there some deep reason for this? Does this peach feel ripe to you?”
Does there need to be a point? Two people love each other. They happen to be different on the outside, but they are the same on the inside. ‘Nuff said.
Crystal is an enlisted mechanic with a tragic past. Grant is an officer and a pilot with a broken heart. When faced with a difficult decision, will Crystal choose wisely or lose the best thing that ever happened to her?
The love between them burns hot, but their relationship won’t stay fueled if they can’t beat the obstacles in their way. Besides breaking the fraternization rules, Grant and Crystal have the difference of race between them…but can they prove to the rest of the world, and to each other, that love is color blind?
Afterburn is about overcoming one’s past, not judging others, learning to forgive, and what it’s like to be a woman in a “man’s world”.
About Plotting to Win:
In New York City, seven writers compete for a hundred thousand dollars, a publishing contract with Bright House, and the title of the next bestseller. One is Felicity James. One is Victor Guzman.
Drama, plagiarism, and trash talk play out to enthralled audiences across the country as all seven contestants compete against each other in a range of heated challenges, with tensions reaching breaking point. As Felicity and Victor start up a show-mance, their relationship burns up the ratings.
Will this sizzling fling escalate into a vicious battle for money and fame, or will these two authors manage to write their own happy ending?
About Fine Like Wine:
Every day Talinda watches lovers meet, come, and go from her concierge perch at the Hacienda Hotel. It’s past time she had some companionship in her own life, and she wants that with the lovely and elusive Vespera, but for some reason, the object of her affection allows no one in her heart.
It’s been said “magic happens at Vespera’s” and yet magic hasn’t happened for Vespera. Having been burned once, the vineyard owner is not eager for a repeat experience. Yet a candlelit bedroom romp just may engulf her in the flames of burning love if she’s not careful.
Will their coming together be like a fine vintage, growing better with age, or will too much heat too soon cause it to spoil?
About A Healing Love:
Kimberly Rogers vowed to fight a tragic past the only way she knew how: she joined the Army and became strong. No man would hurt her again. But a war wound sends her to her brother’s in Cripple Creek, WY, with vision and hearing impairments.
Whereas glasses can help her see and hearing aids can help her hear, nothing can force her to talk again. Is she really unable to speak, or is she hiding behind her disability to protect herself, her pride, and her heart? Regulated to the most menial of jobs, her world in shambles, Kimberly is finally convinced to seek medical assistance.
Carlos Medina is Jackson Hole’s best therapist. If anyone can make Kimberly speak again, it’s him. But Kimberly has to meet him halfway, and Carlos has his own past tragedy that the young, mute woman threatens to force him to conquer.
They both have wounds…and sometimes wounds must be reopened before they can heal. Can they open up to each other? Can Kimberly find her voice again and open her heart? Can love heal them both?
Tara Chevrestt is a deaf woman, former aviation mechanic, dog mom, writer, and editor. You’ll never see her without her Kindle or a book within reach. As a child, she would often take a flashlight under the covers to finish the recent Nancy Drew novel when she was supposed to be sleeping.
Tara is addicted to Law & Order: SVU, has a crush on Cary Grant, laughs at her own jokes, and is constantly modifying recipes and experimenting in the kitchen. Her theme is Strong is Sexy. She writes about strong women facing obstacles—in the military, with their handicaps, or just learning to accept themselves. Her heroines can stand alone and take care of themselves, but they often find love in the process.