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Friday, December 30, 2011

News and Reviews!

Lots to report today :)

Sabine at Manic Readers and Shyla at The TBR Pile both gave Mistletoe and Menage wonderful reviews (with a chance to win a copy at The TBR Pile--contest ends Jan. 1, 2012)!!!

I also heard back from Siren today on both of my latest submissions! Two Times the Trouble (Bewitching Desires 5) and The Sextet Presents...Playing in the Raine: A Toy Story are tentatively scheduled for release in May!!!

Back to writing :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Done and Sent!

Two Times the Trouble (Bewitching Desires 5) is waiting in Siren's inbox as of this morning! That brings the total to eleven novella submissions this year--eight published, one with a Feb. 2012 release date, and two waiting for acceptance (yes, I'm thinking positively:)).

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Another One Done!

I finished Two Times the Trouble (Bewitching Desires 5) tonight! After a slice and dice by my CPs, it's off to Siren. That'll make submission number eleven this year :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Two Fated for One on B&N!

Two Fated for One (Bewitching Desires 3) is now available at B&N!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Entanglements on Amazon!

The Sextet Anthologies Volume 4: Entanglements is now available on Amazon Kindle!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Review for Mistletoe & Menage!

Thanks to Red Hibiscus at Booked Up for a wonderful 5-star review of Mistletoe & Menage!!! Check it out!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Awesome Review!

Thanks to Luta at the TBR Pile for an awesome 5-star orgasmic review of Entanglements!!! And String Theory was her favorite :) Click here to read the review.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Contract!

I got the contract for Two Pirates to Treasure today! Signed, scanned, and sent!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Pre-orders!!!

Mistletoe & Menage (The Sextet Anthologies Volume 5) is now available for pre-orders at Siren!!! Release date is December 19th!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Release Date!

Two Pirates to Treasure (Bewitching Desires 4) is on the Siren Publishing calendar with a tentative release date of February 27th!!! And I'm heading into the homestretch with Two Times the Trouble :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, December 5, 2011

New Cover!!!

Here's the cover for The Sextet Anthology Volume 5: Mistletoe & Menage!!! I also got final edits today for A Little Elfin Magic from M&M. Done and sent! Release date is December 19th :)


Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

BD-1&2 in print!

I got the cover block for the print version of Bewitching Desires Volume 1 today! It includes Two if by Sea and Two Knights of Passion. The trade paperback will be available at Amazon and B&N in a few weeks!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

SNOW!!!

Just when I thought I might lose my mind from another day of rain, the liquid turned to solid! Walking to tutoring with my son across campus yesterday, we were dodging raindrops and sleet. By the time we headed back to the car, slushy snow had already started accumulating on the ground, the road, and the sidewalks. My Beetle looked like a giant blue cupcake with two inches of thick white frosting :) This morning the view from the picture window in my living room is Christmas-card gorgeous. Snow-covered trees and birds on the feeders. Now I'm ready to shop!

BTW, last night I finished another chapter of Two Times the Trouble. Jolan has Liam and Ivan right where she wants them :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Happy belated Thanksgiving!

What a busy week! Besides the usual writing, laundry, taking my son to tutoring, etc., I made homemade noodles and pies (2 pumpkin and 1 peach + 1 apple to put in the freezer) to take to my SIL's for Thanksgiving. Fifteen of us enjoyed way too much food and our annual B-day party for all the kids. Then, it was off to my sister's house to see my side of the family--with MORE food...My husband, son, and I had a wonderful visit with the daughter. We saw The Muppets :) and tried a new-to-us Thai restaurant. *insert heavenly sigh here* Happy belated Thanksgiving!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Release Day for Entanglements!

Just a quick reminder before I head to the kitchen to start making pies and noodles for Thanksgiving: Entanglements is now available from Siren Publishing!

Also on the agenda today--laundry and writing. Two Times the Trouble is moving right along. I started chapter 5 yesterday! BTW, I've found the perfect inspiration for Ivan :)


Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Trouble!

I'm plugging away on Bewitching Desires 5 (working title--Two Times the Trouble) while I wait to find out the release date for Two Pirates to Treasure. Here's the inspiration for Liam, one of the hunky construction workers, in Two Times :) Thank you, Cheryl Brooks!


Off to write!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Release Day for Two Fated for One!

Happy Release Day to me!!! Two Fated for One (Bewitching Desires 3) is now available at Siren Publishing! Enjoy :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Retreat!

I'm at Bradford Woods for IRWA's annual retreat this weekend, and we're having a blast! I got final edits for String Theory (Entanglements) last night. Done and returned!! I gave my Push To PRO presentation this morning and will be starting a new Yahoo loop to help my fellow members working toward achieving RWA PRO status.

Off to lunch and writing!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Entanglements is up for pre-orders!

Yay!!! The Sextet Anthologies Volume 4: Entanglements is available for pre-orders! Release date is November 21st :)


Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Writing, Writing

I've come to the conclusion that the witch/heroine in my current WIP is feisty, and she isn't afraid to say what's on her mind! I'm over 4K in and going strong :) Want to bet I get edits???

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Done! Whew!!

After MANY interruptions, Two Pirates to Treasure is DONE!!! Now that Orsolya's story is finished, I can move on to Jolan's trouble with two hunky construction workers :) I'm thinking maybe "Two Times the Trouble" for the title...

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Cover!!!

Here's the cover for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 4: Entanglements! HOT!!! It fits String Theory very well :)



Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Two Fated for One up for pre-orders!

What a busy writing week! Two Fated for One is available for pre-orders as of this morning :)


Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Updates

I sent back the final edits for Two Fated for One last night and found the contract for Mistletoe & Menage in my inbox today. I also got the tentative cover for Entanglements yesterday. The Sextet would like a tweak or two before we give it the final okay. I'll post it when it's ready!

Release date reminders:
Two Fated for One (Bewitching Desires 3) ~ Monday, November 14th
Entanglements (The Sextet Anthologies Volume 4) ~ Monday, November 21st
Mistletoe & Menage (The Sextet Anthologies Volume 5) ~ Monday, December 19th

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Final Edits

I got the final edits for Two Fated for One this morning. Done. Now for a final read-through! It should be up for pre-orders in a few days :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

I can't believe the end of October is here already!

I finished edits for A Little Elfin Magic this morning and sent them back to Siren. While driving home yesterday from a visit to my daughter and my sister-in-law's family in Ohio, I put together the materials for my Push To PRO presentation at the IRWA Retreat in less than two weeks. And the end of Two Pirates to Treasure is within reach.

Back to work!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, October 28, 2011

B&N--Two Knights of Passion

Bewitching Desires 2: Two Knights of Passion is now on B&N Nook!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Edits!

I got edits for A Little Elfin Magic from The Sextet's Mistletoe & Menage anthology today! Release date is Dec. 19th :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

And...

Occupational Hazards is available in print at Amazon!!!

Cover Time!

I got the cover for Two Fated for One today!!! Want a peek? :) Release day is November 14th!



Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Occupational Hazards at B&N

Occupational Hazards is now available on Nook and in print from Barnes & Noble!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Coming Soon!

I got edits for The Sextet's Entanglements anthology last night. Just a few quick fixes. Done! Release date is November 21st!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

More Good News

Not only is Occupational Hazards going to be available in print soon, I got my contract today for The Sextet's next anthology, Entanglements, and TBR Pile has Two if by Sea on their review schedule for Friday, November 25th (Black Friday)!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Occupational Hazards in print soon!

I got the cover block for the print copy of Occupational Hazards today--which means it'll be available at Amazon and B&N in 4-6 weeks! I'll post the link as soon as it's active!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Release Dates

After back to back submissions to Siren in September, the next two Sextet anthologies are on the calendar for release!!! Looks like Entanglements will be out on Nov. 21st and Mistletoe and Menage on Dec. 19th!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

A Short Recess

I'd hoped to finish Two Pirates to Treasure by the first of October, but I didn't quite make it. Life doesn't always cooperate. I spent a couple days in Ohio for my sister's father-in-law's funeral. He had a long battle with cancer and will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

Off to play catch up!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A kick!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

How about a Few Extra Hours in a Day?

Time for a deep breath... Ahhh. Much better. I'm making progress on Two Pirates to Treasure, but a STOP sign popped up in front of me on Tuesday afternoon. EDITS!!! I got first edits for Two Fated for One and had to tackle those first. Mostly simple fixes. A read-through. All done :) Now back to writing!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Done!!!

I finished A Little Elfin Magic last night (Mistletoe and Menage)!!! A quick read-through and off to Cheryl Brooks and Elizabeth Raines for critiquing.

Back to my pirates :) Arghh, Matey!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

BTW--Honeydews do NOT ripen after picking. They ferment and explode on your kitchen counter in the middle of the night :P Melonoma???

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Entanglements...

The Sextet has submitted the fourth anthology to Siren this week--Entanglements. If you haven't guessed by the title, the stories involve some major emotional and physical ties! My contribution to this volume is String Theory. An imaginative physicist and her sexy coworker enjoy some after-hours experimentation :) I'll post the release date as soon as I know!

The fifth volume, Mistletoe and Menage, is coming right along too. I plan to finish my story today and send it off to the rest of the group for critique. Still thinking about the title...

Back to writing!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Quick Update

I've set aside Two Pirates to Treasure for the past few days to work on my contribution to The Sextet's Christmas anthology, Mistletoe and Menage. I've added about 5K words to it, and The End is in sight!

Off to write! Deadlines!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Writing, Canning, and LOTS More Writing

Two Fated for One (Bewitching Desires 3) is on the SirenBookstrand calendar with a tentative release date of November 14th. Book 4 of the series, Two Pirates to Treasure, is well under way, and I'm making progress on my contribution to the next Sextet anthology, Mistletoe and Menage. AND Two Knights of Passion releases tomorrow!

In between, I've been trying to keep with my garden. Yesterday I chopped 30 pounds of tomatoes and a bunch of peppers, onions, and celery for bbq sauce. I now have enough to last two years! It joins the 30 pints of salsa I canned last month.

Off to write :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, September 9, 2011

One More Announcement (I Think)!

Two Knights of Passion (Bewitching Desires2) is now available for pre-orders!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Dirty Dancing in Print!

Dirty Dancing is now available in trade paperback from Barnes & Noble!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Review for Occupational Hazards

Wow! Occupational Hazards got a fabulous 5-star review from Shyla at The To Be Read Pile!!! Check it out :)

Mellanie SzeretoRomance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Done with Final Edits!

I received the final edits for Two Knights of Passion last night. They're done and sent! Release date is September 16, and it should be available for pre-orders later this week!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Back to the Grindstone

After a fun weekend of kayaking, picnicking, fishing, and shopping, I'm trying to get back into the writing routine. Laundry is done. The cats and dog are home from boarding. Time to crank out my contribution to The Sextet's Christmas anthology, Mistletoe and Manage, and the fourth book in the Bewitching Desires series, Two Pirates to Treasure. September is going to be a busy writing month!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Cover for Two Knights of Passion!

I got the promo versions of the Two Knights of Passion cover today! Final edits should be arriving any minute. This second book in my Bewitching Desires series should be available for pre-orders soon as well. Will keep you posted!

Occupational Hazards is now available from Amazon too!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Writing, Writing, Writing

I'm off to a good start with Two Pirates to Treasure (Bewitching Desires 4) and my yet-untitled Christmas novella for the fifth Sextet anthology, Mistletoe and Menage. I submitted BD3-Two Fated for One and am working on the cover art questionnaire. Final edits for Two Knights of Passion should be coming any day, and the cover for it should be ready some time this week. Off to write some more!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

On to the Next Story

Two Fated for One (Bewitching Desires 3) is finished and out with my critique buddies, Cheryl Brooks and Elizabeth Raines. What's up next? Pirates! I know who's in for a bit of adventure and a lot of love in the Macska household ;) Just gotta come up with some sexy pirate-y names for her heroes. Then they can shiver her timbers! :D

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sharing in Print!

The Sextet Anthologies Volume 1: Sharing is now available in trade paperback from Amazon and B&N!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Anniversary :)

Today is my 25th wedding anniversary :) Has it really been that long??? I'm NOT that old!!! I swear!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Release Day for Two if by Sea!

Today is release day for Two if by Sea, the first of my Bewitching Desires series from Siren Publishing!!! I hope you enjoy it :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Home Again

Vacation got in the way of writing a little, but I'm working on the final chapter of Two Fated for One (Bewitching Desires 3). We had a strenuous but awesome hike up to the top of Estes Cone on Tuesday and a drive up the Old Fall River Road on Wednesday to the Alpine stop (9 miles of one-way dirt/gravel road from about 7500 feet elevation to about 12,000 feet). The views coming down the Trail Ridge Road were breathtaking and a tiny bit scary at times.

After a two and a half day drive, I'm home again, trying to catch up on laundry and get the last chapter done. Then it's on to the next story!

Don't forget--Two if by Sea releases Monday!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Vacation in The Rockies

I'm having a wonderful time with my husband and son in Estes Park this week. Today we hiked the Nymph, Dream, Emerald Lakes trail and the alluvial fan trail in Rocky Mountain National Park. The highlight of the day was when my son tried to cross the stream at the alluvial fan and fell in. He got soaked from head to toes. He's been a good sport about the teasing and is none the worse for wear. Tomorrow, the eight-mile hike??? Maybe :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Almost Caught Up!

What a crazy summer! I've been out of town several times--RWA National Conference, family reunion/vacation, moving daughter to grad school, and now hubby's conference in Boulder/vacation in Estes Park. I've had numerous writing deadlines and releases. And I'm writing new stories. In the last couple weeks, I've done final edits, first edits, edits for a submission, continued working on book 3 of the Bewitching Desires series, and starting a new novella for volume 5 of The Sextet Anthologies. I have a self-imposed submission deadline of this Wednesday for Two Fated for One (BD-3), with only the last couple chapters to write. Then I need to crank out the Christmas anthology story and get started on Two Pirates to Treasure. Did I really say I'm almost caught up???

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Cover for Two if by Sea!

I got the cover for Two if by Sea, the first book in my Bewitching Desires, today! It should be up for pre-orders at Siren soon. Will post the link as soon as it's active!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Whew!

In between first edits for Two Knights of Passion and final edits for Two if by Sea, I've been working on Bewitching Desires 3: Two Fated For One and judging entries for the Indiana Golden Opportunity writing contest. Final edits are done, first edits are in progress, Two Fated For One is nearing completion, and I finished the last of my judging today. That brings me to the "Whew!"

For those entering contests and submitting to agents and publishers, I have a few words of advice.

**Be sure to follow the formatting guidelines.** Every entry I judged had points taken off for not following standard formatting guidelines. Don't try to squeeze in extra words from your manuscript by beginning new chapters at the tops of pages or on the same page as the previous chapter. This makes a BAD impression. It makes the writer look unprofessional. Take the time to research acceptable fonts, how to make a header, what margin size to use, etc. The points for formatting are giveaways for those who follow directions!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Release Day for Occupational Hazards!

Today is release day for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 3: Occupational Hazards! AND Sharing will be available in print in 4-6 weeks for those who enjoy holding a book in their hands and Dirty Dancing is now available on Nook from Barnes & Noble! I'll post the link for the print version of Sharing as soon as it's active.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

And Another One

Dirty Dancing got another great review today over at WTF Book Reviews. Thanks for the Kudos, KurvyK!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Manic Readers Loves Anthologies!

Sabine at Manic Readers gave The Sextet another great review--this time for Occupational Hazards. Check it out here!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

More Reviews!

The first two Sextet Anthologies were reviewed by Manic Readers. Four stars for both volumes! Read Sabine's reviews for Sharing and Dirty Dancing!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Review For Dirty Dancing

I got a wonderful review today for Learning Curve in Dirty Dancing!!! Check it out at The Romance Studio!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Stir-fried Green Beans

I picked the first of my garden green beans today and decided to get creative in the kitchen. Here's the result!

Stir-fried Green Beans

1/2 pound or so fresh green beans
2-3 large cloves of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon garlic chili pepper sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons water

Heat the olive oil in a wok over medium-high heat until hot. Add garlic and green beans. Stir-fry until beans begin to turn bright green. Add water and cover. Steam about five minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic chili pepper sauce and toss well. Serve as a side dish or with steamed rice.

Yummy!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, July 22, 2011

More Edits!

I got final edits for Wet Her Whistle from The Sextet Anthologies Volume 3: Occupational Hazards. Done and returned with excerpts! This volume should come up for pre-orders within a week. I'll post the link as soon as it's available!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Summer Vacation???

Remember the days of summer vacation? Not happening. My husband helped our daughter move from her apartment at Purdue to her new apartment at Kent State last weekend--which means I've spent the last week trying to make room for a new bedroom suite since she got our old one. This job has morphed into cleaning the spare room to find space for the desk that's currently in my bedroom and adding more attic floor in the garage for more storage space. On top of that, the garden has decided it needs attention. At least, we're taking a break today to go see the last Harry Potter movie. I'm hoping to get in some writing today, too!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Shout Out!!!

Check out my good friend and Sextet sister, Cheryl Brooks' latest book--Love, Sex, and a Purple Bikini on Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords. It's hot!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, July 15, 2011

New Cover!

I got the cover for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 3: Occupational Hazards! Release date is August 5th!!!

Almost done with edits on Bewitching Desires 1: Two If By Sea. Cover art questionnaire is finished and sent.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Off And Running!

My day thus far--I got an email from Siren saying to expect my contract and cover questionnaire for Bewitching Desires 2: Two Knights Of Passion within three weeks! I got edits for Bewitching Desires 1: Two If By Sea!! And I'm working on the third story in the series!!! Still thinking about the title...

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, July 8, 2011

My First Review!

I got my first review for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 1: Sharing today from Night Owl Romance!!! **** Four stars :) YAY!!! Thanks, Diana Coyle :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Release Date For Two If By Sea!

Bewitching Desires 1: Two If By Sea is on the Siren calendar!!! Release day is August 29th--the same day as my good friend, Elizabeth Raines' Wicked Missions 7: Covert! I'm hoping for a mermaid on the cover :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Home Again

I had a terrific time in NYC at the RWA National Conference, but I'm glad to be home. Even after almost twelve hours of sleep last night, I'm still recovering from late nights and early mornings. Good thing it only happens once a year!

This month will be another busy one--a family reunion/vacation at Salt Fork State Park in Ohio, picking up the key for my daughter's new apartment and getting her moved from Purdue to Kent State, keeping up with the garden, and writing, of course :) August looks about the same, with a trip to Colorado and school starting again.

Many thanks to those of you who have bought The Sextet Anthologies Volumes 1 & 2! I'm on the Siren 30-day Bestselling Authors list!!! Volume 3 is due out July 29th, so I should be getting the cover and final edits soon. I'll post the new cover as soon as I get it!

Off to write some more!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Dirty Dancing release day!

It's release day for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 2: Dirty Dancing, and as of yesterday, Volume 1: Sharing is now available on Amazon!!! I'm in NYC at the RWA National Conference celebrating with The Sextet, having a great time!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

So Much To Do!

What a day! I had breakfast at Junior's this morning with part of The Sextet, wrote for a couple hours, and did some window shopping on Fifth Avenue with lunch at Trump Tower. After a quick stop in the hotel room, I headed to the 8th floor to meet up with a couple of my Sextet sisters who flew in today. Then we were off the RWA Literacy Signing. People everywhere!!! Later, The Sextet and a few friends will head to Sardi's for a late supper. Having a great time in NYC!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, June 27, 2011

RWA National Conference in NYC!

Up at 5:30 this morning, on the road to Sandy James' house at 7:00, and at the airport by 10:00. Arrived in NYC, had drinks with my publisher, and walked around Times Square. Ready to crash. Long day tomorrow. Having a great time!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Contracts, Submissions, and Covers!

I've had a bit of a whirlwind week! I got the email about Two If By Sea from Siren on Monday morning, had the cover art questionnaire in the afternoon, completed it and sent it back that night, received the contract this morning, and signed and returned it this afternoon.

Next up--submit the second story. Two Knights Of Passion is polished and ready to go, the synopsis is written, and the blurbs just need a quick once-over by my critique partners!

And more writing!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

New Novella Series!

I've been writing, promoting, and editing like crazy the past couple weeks. Final edits came in for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 2: Dirty Dancing (which is available for preorders as of yesterday!), and a few days later, I got first edits on Volume 3: Occupational Hazards (release date of July 29). I submitted the first novella in my witch series to Siren. Bewitching Desires 1: Two If By Sea will be published in September! I'm working on a final polish for book two to submit before I head to NYC next week for the RWA National Conference. Critique partners, Elizabeth Raines, Sandy James, and Cheryl Brooks loved this story! Yay!!! Book three is about halfway done, and I have an idea simmering for book four. Whew!

Time to write!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Writing, Writing, and More Writing

Over the past couple months between working on future Sextet volumes and editing, I've started writing a new series of my own to submit to Siren. I finished the second novella last week and began the third. I'm enjoying the research on moon cycles, 14th-century Middle English and knights, and Latin. This series is unlike anything I've written so far, featuring witches, mermaids, dragons, and who knows what else!

BTW, Sharing is climbing Siren's Bestseller Lists! Download your copy and grab a glass of something cold. These stories are HOT!!!

Until next time...

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Release Day!!!

Ever heard the expression "not enough time in the day"? That's my life. Writing, editing, critiquing, laundry, meals, etc., etc., etc... My computer is still giving me some problems, but who has time to take it to be checked out? The month of May was insanely busy, with my daughter's last dance show at Purdue, my son's birthday, my birthday and Mother's Day, my daughter's magna cum laude graduation from Purdue :), my daughter's birthday, apartment hunting at Kent State University where my daughter will be attending grad school, repairs to my daughter's car after someone took potshots at it with a BB gun, plus all the day-to-day stuff. Whew!

Yesterday was the release day for The Sextet Anthologies Volume 1: Sharing!!! We made the 30-day Siren BookStrand Bestseller List!


We also got the cover for Volume 2: Dirty Dancing. This one is HOT!!!


Get your copy of Sharing at http://www.bookstrand.com/sharing! Read blurbs for upcoming volumes at http://www.mellanieszereto.com!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe--Whole Wheat Biscuits

Finally, back again after a very busy and trying few weeks. I spent six days at Hocking Hills (with no internet and extremely spotty cell phone service), home for a day and a half to catch up on laundry, then gone again to Nashville, Indiana for a critique weekend with The Sextet. While working on the next volume of The Sextet anthologies with my wonderful writing sisters, my laptop decided to give me the spinning beach ball of the death every time I clicked on something. Needless to say, it wasn't a productive weekend for me, but we had a great time anyway. Monday came and my computer went to the iCare Corner on campus for repairs. Luckily, the tech was able to save everything onto my external hard drive. Whew! They even gave me a loaner. A week later, my laptop had a new hard drive, but they installed the wrong operating system... After another trip to the iCare Corner and I was ready to roll. And then...my car battery died. While my husband was out of town. And we were out of milk and my daughter needed rent money. A hundred dollars and two days later, I have a new battery. Ready for good news now.

It came! I got edits from Siren yesterday afternoon on Volume 1 of The Sextet Anthologies!! The editor loved my story and I only have very minor fixes to make!!! This is great news since I started working on my own series to submit to Siren and it hasn't stopped talking to me for four days.

On to the recipe! Here's a healthier alternative to ordinary biscuits. Sorry, no picture. I'm having issues accessing my photo library since the new hard drive was installed. Hopefully, I'll get it figured out by next week.

Whole Wheat Biscuits

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter or margarine
2/3 cup milk or buttermilk

Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Cut in margarine until crumbly. Stir in milk. Dough will be slightly sticky. Dust surface with whole wheat flour and press dough to 1-inch thickness. Cut with 2-inch round cookie cutter. Place biscuits on lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes or until done. Serve hot from the oven. Makes 6-8 biscuits.

Enjoy!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe - Fried Apples

I received my second contract from Siren this week and sent if off yesterday! The novella for The Sextet's Volume 7 is started as well, with an idea for Volume 8 brewing in my head. I have a trip to Hocking Hills planned and a critique weekend with The Sextet on the calendar, too! Busy me means easy meals. Here's a yummy side-dish that's ready in less than 20 minutes.



Fried Apples

4-5 medium Gala apples, washed, cored, and sliced
1 tablespoon margarine or butter
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Melt margarine in a non-stick or iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add apples. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Mix well and cover. Cook until apples are tender, stirring occasionally. Great as a side-dish with breakfast or supper, or use as a filling for omelets.

Yummy!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Signed, Sealed, Delivered

Late Thursday afternoon I received my first publishing contract from Siren! Yes, I read all twelve pages after printing it and before signing it. It's official! The Sextet and I are now also in the authors list on Siren Publishing's Coming Soon page. Click on The Sextet and/or Mellanie Szereto to see our soon-to-be-published volumes. Go to http://www.sirenpublishing.com/comingsoon :)

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe - Leek and Potato Soup

Oops! A day late again. I started the RWA PRO 50K Challenge this week and added a critique partner to my line-up, so yesterday was 150 pages of critiquing plus my normal writing. I've also been tweaking my website this week--not an easy task for the technically-challenged...

Here's another simple soup recipe to use more of those garden potatoes. :)

Leek and Potato Soup

3-4 large leeks, trimmed, sliced, and thoroughly rinsed (they tend to collect mud in the layers)
3 tablespoons margarine or butter
5-6 medium potatoes, scrubbed, quartered, and sliced
4 cups water
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1 tablespoon chopped chives

In a soup pot, saute leeks in margarine over medium-high heat until tender. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 30 minutes or until potatoes are soft, stirring occasionally. Makes 6-8 servings. Great with quiche, quesadillas, and grilled cheese sandwiches!

Back to work!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Coming Soon!!!

Time for a deep breath. I spent all day Saturday with The Sextet working on our critiques for Volume 4 and much of the day yesterday editing that story and trying to reach the finish line of my current novella. Almost there. AND, as of yesterday, The Sextet's Volumes 1 and 2 are on the Coming Soon page at the Siren/Bookstrand website! No covers yet, but they should be ready soon as well.

Off to write!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe--Butter and Herb Mashed Red Potatoes

Only a day late. A trip to the orthodontist and a blown fuse in my car interfered with life yesterday. Here's an alternative to the same boring mashed potatoes. I came up with this recipe as a way to use the bushels of red potatoes from my garden.



Butter and Herb Mashed Red Potatoes

4 large red potatoes, scrubbed, trimmed but not peeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
salt
pepper
parsley
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/3-1/2 cup milk

Rinse the chopped potatoes in cold water and drain. Add enough cold water to cover and about 1 teaspoon salt. Let stand up to two hours. Heat on high until boiling. Reduce heat and continue to boil until potatoes are soft. Drain.
Add 1/2 teaspoon salt, a few shakes of pepper, 1 tablespoon parsley, margarine, and milk. Mash until mixed but not smooth. I use a hand masher. Makes about 6 servings.

Enjoy!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Busy As A...Writer

The start of another week, with more to do to get ready for The Sextet's first release. IRWA's PR person and I are working together to decide where to send public relations releases in regards to e-pubbing. We're both learning as we go :)

I'm also critiquing Paige Matthews' single title novella while I work on The Sextet Volume 6's story and keep up with email, etc. Busy, but good busy!

Happy Valentines Day!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Conference and Website and Meetings, Oh My!

It's that time again! I've registered for the 2011 RWA National Conference, have my flight to NYC and hotel booked, and, best of all, the whole Sextet will be in attendance! A few days ago I also contacted RWA to request my First Sale ribbon :)

Yesterday I figured out how to add pages and content to my under-construction website. Yes, this computer illiterate is building her own website. The best part? I know how to put titles and release dates to my books page! Covers shouldn't be too far behind. We should be getting the first three soon. The link to my website is in the list at the bottom of the page. Take a look!

Tomorrow is the monthly meeting for IRWA and I have lots of updates to pass on as PRO Liaison of the chapter. I'm looking forward to getting together with The Sextet afterward for a late lunch/early dinner. Lots of our ideas for stories arise from these post meeting meetings. I can't wait to see where the brainstorming leads.

Back to writing!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe--Dilled Salmon

Wednesday is here again, and I'm ready for summer. I think my yard has been snow-less two days since December first. Right now, It's a mixture of two inches of sleet glazed over with a thin coating of ice, another two inches of sleet glazed over with about half an inch of ice, and about six inches or so of snow. I've had to wear my YakTrax to walk the dog for the last week.

An upside to blustery winter weather? I huddle over the keyboard, working on more Sextet stories. My Volume 5 contribution is coming along at 12K words, with positive feedback from fellow Sextet writers Cheryl Brooks and Paige Matthews. I need to work on Volume 3's final polish, then it'll be ready to submit to our editor at Siren Publishing. And I'm thinking ahead to Volumes 6 and 7. That means easy meals and lots of writing and research!



Dilled Salmon

Fresh or frozen salmon fillets (I prefer the tail portion--no bones)
salt
pepper
dill
margarine (about 1 1/2 tablespoons per pound of salmon)

Remove skin from salmon. Hint--use a very sharp knife with partially frozen salmon. Salt and pepper both sides. Let stand 10 minutes.
Preheat a cast iron skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Add margarine and melt to an even coating in the bottom of the pan. Add salmon and sprinkle generously with dill. Cover and cook until fish becomes opaque and underside in lightly browned. Turn and sprinkle with dill. Cover and cook until flaky and thickest part of fillet is cooked through.
**A well-seasoned cast iron skillet works best**

I like to serve this with a baked potato or Butter and Herb Mashed Red Potatoes (I'll post this recipe next week!). Enjoy!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Writing First

Where does the time go? I haven't posted in over a week, but when the ideas flow, writing comes first. I've been whipping my story for The Sextet Volume 3 into shape and working on another story for Volume 5. The Morphing Subplot is out to several critique buddies for ripping and shredding (hopefully not too much--I LOVE this 90K contemporary).

Stay safe and warm in this blustery winter weather!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Sextet Update

Here's the latest news from The Sextet--We got our official offer notification yesterday by emails AND our anthologies will be available in print (with about a 5-month lag time), as well as ebook format! We're all sooo excited!

More good news--I have stories done and submitted for Volumes 1 & 2, story ready to submit for Volume 4, stories ready to be edited, polished, then critiqued for Volumes 3 & 6, and I'm about 4K in on the story for Volume 5.

I've also registered for RWA National Conference 2011, booked my flight, and made hotel reservations. This is shaping up to be a very good year!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe--Chicken Ranch Dip and Artichoke Dip

I started working on a new Sextet story yesterday. I have to thank my book group for the inspiration. We had our monthly meeting Monday evening, and I received such positive encouragement, congratulations, and well wishes on my first sale. These women LOVE books, so they've been genuinely interested in my journey to publication. Thanks, ladies!

I signed up for snacks this month for book group. Here are two tasty dips I took:

Chicken Ranch Dip

4 1/2 oz. can of white meat chicken or 2 chicken breast tenderloins, cooked and chopped
2 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
8 oz. cream cheese, softened (I use Neufchatel)
2 teaspoons ranch dressing mix (about 1/4 envelope)
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

Saute onion in margarine. Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Blend well. Transfer to oven-safe dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Serve with crackers or chips.

Artichoke Dip

1 can artichokes, drained and chopped
1 cup mayonnaise (I use light)
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

Combine all ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Transfer to oven-safe dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Serve with crackers or chips.

I usually double both recipes. Yummy!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Morphing Subplot

I'm thrilled to say...The Morphing Subplot is finished!!! I did a bit of polishing on the first draft and sent it off to a couple people for critique and feedback. The wait will be difficult, but in the meantime I'll start thinking about a real title. Nothing, absolutely nothing tried to form in my brain the entire I was writing it. That NEVER happens. On the other hand, I've also never had a story tell itself to me quite the way this one has. Six months from start to finish, while I worked on five short stories/novellas for The Sextet. I accomplished a lot since July :) And I've just started.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a KIck!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Staying Ahead of the Game

As of today, Volumes 1 & 2 of The Sextet Anthologies are off to our editor at Siren--ahead of deadline!!! I need to edit and polish the story for Volume 3, and Volume 4's story is ready to go! I also critiqued a short story and have worked on editing The Morphing Subplot today. My word count is now almost 91K for the story that still makes me cry. Don't feel bad. It's a good thing :)

Back to writing!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe--Light Seedless Rye Bread

A quick update on The Sextet anthologies before I get to the recipe--We have deadlines and release dates for eight volumes this year, beginning in May! I'm so thrilled to be working with this awesome group of writers. Love you, Ladies!!!



Time for more comfort food. Icy roads this morning and 3-6" of snow in the forecast for tonight and tomorrow. I tried this recipe for the first time today and loved the results. Give it a try!

Light Seedless Rye Bread

2 cups very warm water (115 degrees)
1 teaspoon dry yeast
2 tablespoons molasses
2 1/2 - 3 cups whole wheat flour
2 1/2 - 3 cups rye flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil

Combine water, yeast, and molasses. Let stand until slightly foamy (about 1-2 minutes). Stir in 1 1/2 cups each wheat and rye flours until smooth. Cover and let stand 30 minutes. Stir in salt and olive oil. Add 1 cup each wheat and rye flours. Mix well. Turn onto floured (wheat or rye) board and knead in enough remaining flour to make a smooth non-sticky dough. Place in oiled bowl, turn dough to oil top, and cover. Let rise 1 hour. Punch down. Roll into a 9"x12" rectangle. Beginning on 12" side, roll tightly into a loaf, pressing seam and ends to seal. Place on oiled baking sheet. Cover and let rise 45 minutes. Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

Enjoy!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Details, details

I'm still floating on the first-sale cloud, but I can't let that slow me down. Yesterday was all about writing, editing, and filling out cover art questionnaires. Yes, questionnaire has an "s" at the end. The Sextet's editor wants 5-7 volumes this year!!! So my first sale is also my second, third, fourth, ... Well, you get the idea. Thankfully, we were counting on a multiple book deal and I've already completed five stories. Two are ready to go, I'm upping the word count on another, and need to edit the last two and the one I'm adding to. We have themes for volumes 6 & 7. After I finish 3, 4, and 5, I'll get to work on those. Oh, and did I mention I'm still writing 90K contemporaries??? LOVE this gig!!!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Friday, January 14, 2011

THE CALL!!!

I got THE CALL today!!! Actually, Paige Matthews of The Sextet got the call and called the rest of us. Paige, Cheryl Brooks, and I sold our first novella anthology as part of The Sextet! The other members are Ginger O'Brien, Annie Morgan, and Geni McGrath. I'm so excited to be working with this wonderful group of writers. Check out our website!!! www.TheSextet.com

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Wednesday's Recipe--Vegetable Soup

All the snowy winter weather makes me want to hibernate with my laptop and comfort food. The laptop part is a good thing since my writing goals for January include finishing a short story, a novella, and The Morphing Subplot. As of this evening, the novella is done and ready for editing and polishing so I can send it off to Cheryl Brooks and Paige Matthews--my cohorts on this project.

Ah, comfort food. I love soups, stews, and breads in the winter. One of my favorites is Vegetable Soup. Serve with some fresh Italian bread for a warm and satisfying meal.

Vegetable Soup

1/3 lb. lean beef (I like to use eye of round)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 ribs of celery, chopped
2 medium carrots, sliced
3 medium potatoes, cubed
1 cup fresh, frozen, or canned green beans
1/2 cup fresh, frozen, or canned corn
1/2 cup fresh, frozen, or canned peas
1/2 cup fresh, frozen, or canned lima beans
1/2 small head of cabbage, chopped
1/2 teaspoon unseasoned meat tenderizer
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
salt and pepper to taste
6-8 cups of water

Place the meat in a medium soup pot and sprinkle with tenderizer. Let stand 10 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and stir. Cook over medium heat for 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally. Remove meat and allow to cool enough to handle. Shred the meat and return to the soup, mixing well. Makes about 8-10 servings.
*Note--Can also be made in a crockpot. Cook 6-8 hours.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!

Monday, January 10, 2011

All Caught Up?

Have I finally caught up with life? Probably not, but the holidays are over and I have fewer demands on my time. I can adjust the priorities a little to include blogging again..

Last year was a very good writing year. I wrote a total of 340,307 words, averaging 1004 words a day for the 339 days I wrote. I finished 2 manuscripts, 3 short stories, and 1 novella. Yes, several of the WIPs got neglected, BUT in July at the RWA National Conference, several chapter sisters and I decided to join forces to form The Sextet. We're writing erotic romance short stories and should be submitting our first anthology to an editor very soon. Along the way, three of us discovered we write a bit faster than the others. Our first set of trio novellas was submitted yesterday! Hopefully, this means my goal of a first sale only missed 2010 by a few weeks or so. No agent yet, but to be honest, I've been concentrating much more on writing the past several months. I do have a website under construction, so many of my goals from last year have been accomplished.

The best part of getting caught up was realizing how much I LOVE to write!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With a Kick!