Linda Kage on First Lines

And here she is… author of young adult romance and adult contemporary romance, Linda Kage!
Yes, I’m guilty of it.
After I buy a new batch of books, I bypass the back blurb and head straight to the first page.  I scan the beginning lines to each story and whichever one snags my attention the most is the book I place at the top of my TBR pile—unless I can’t put it down at all, in which case I commence to reading at once.
Writing an opening first line is like writing an awesome query letter.  It helps you move through the reader’s slush pile to get your book placed at that top of their interests.  Might not make the entire story better, but it can certainly grab enough attention to get your story noticed sooner…and actually read.
The bottom half of books on my TBR pile usually gets put back on the shelf and forgotten, sometimes never read at all.  So if you want to write a book people will actually read, remember how important that opening line can be—the entire opening scene actually—and make sure it’s intriguing enough to hook your audience’s attention.
Here are a couple FAMOUS first lines:
–Call me Ishmael.
(from MOBY DICK by Herman Melville)
—In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
(from THE HOLY BIBLE)
—It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.
(from 1984 by George Orwell)
—It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.
(from a TALE OF TWO CITIES by Charles Dickens)
—There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.
(from THE VOYAGE OF THE DAWN TREADER by C. S. Lewis)
—They shoot the white girl first.
(from PARADISE by Toni Morrison)
Here are a couple of my FAVORITE first lines.
—Jumping to your death was a crappy way to spend St. Patrick’s Day
(from HIGH NOON by Nora Roberts)
—Her chances of a decent marriage were about to be dashed—and all because of a ferret.
(from TEMPT ME AT TWILIGHT by Lisa Kleypas)
—“Honey, you need to get laid.”
(from FANTASY LOVER by Sherrilyn Kenyon)
And last but certainly not least, here’s my attempt at a catchy first line, coming straight from my next book, A MAN FOR MIA, releasing in April 2011.
—He’d never tried to stop anyone from committing murder before.
(from A MAN FOR MIA by Linda Kage)
So…which story do you want to begin now?

I grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwest as the youngest of eight children. Now I live in Kansas with my husband, daughter, and our nine cuckoo clocks. My life's been blessed with lots of people to learn from and love. Writing's always been a major part my world, and I'm so happy to finally share some of my stories with other romance lovers. I'm a member of Romance Writers of America and a local chapter, Midwest Romance Writers, who meets monthly in the  Kansas City area. I’ve been through a writing correspondence class in children’s literature from The Institute of Children's Literarture, and then I continued my writing lessons by majoring in English with an emphasis in  creative fiction writing from Pittsburg State University. My The Wild Rose Press Books: --The Stillburrow Crush - Young Adult Romance - released February 26, 2010  buy link http://www.thewildrosepress.com/the-stillburrow-crush-p-3892.html?zenid=eb173d435ff79db3f83ce5bbd6afa07a  --The Trouble with Tomboys - Contemporary Adult Romance - released August 6, 2010 buy link http://www.thewildrosepress.com/the-trouble-with-tomboys-p-4158.html --Delinquent Daddy - Contemporary Adult Romance - released October 22, 2010 buy link http://www.thewildrosepress.com/delinquent-daddy-p-4274.html?zenid=d2074fdef3ea3f200ee0c3da0016a6d0  BLOGGING: Linda Kage Blog Page - weekly - http://lindakage.blogspot.com/ Romance Books "R" Us - on the 12th of every month - http://romancebooksrus.blogspot.com/ Climbing Roses of the Wild Rose Press - on the 12th of every month - http://twrpclimbingrose.blogspot.com/ The Writers Vineyard - Every Fourth Wednesday - http://thewritersvineyard.com/ Thanks, Linda for stopping by today!  Everyone remember to leave a comment so you can be entered into the drawing to win fabulous prizes. If I don't  have your email address,then I can't contact you. But it's not the end of the world. If you win, I'll announce  it on the post. You'll just have to check back and see if you're lucky. Otherwise, if you wait too long, the prize may go to the next winner. How long is too long? I dunno. I'm just doing this until my modeling career takes off!  Ta--Amie Disclaimer--I know I'm not the most techie princess out there, so if you have problems with any of the above links, let me know. I'll get with the fabulous Linda and make sure you get all the info you need to get her wonderful books! Don't miss these other great author blogs! Come see me at http://lynneroberts.blogspot.com/ Meet contemporary, paranormal, and historical romance author Caroline Clemmons athttp://authorjenniferjakes.blogspot.com/ Meet historical and paranormal romance writer Lilly Gayle athttp://www.ajbooks.blogspot.com/ Meet erotic western historical author Jennifer Jakes at http://maevegreyson.blogspot.com/ Meet author AJ Nuest at http://amycorwin.blogspot.com/ Meet author Lynne Roberts at http://www.jilljameswrites.com/blog Meet paranormal romance author Maeve Greyson at http://www.katduncan.net/writeabout Meet author Amy Corwin at http://lindakage.blogspot.com/ Meet contemporary and paranormal romance author Jill James athttp://carolineclemmons.blogspot.com/ Meet romantic suspense author Kat Duncan athttp://www.lillygayleromance.blogspot.com

The Trouble with Tomboys

And the hits just keep coming…

Here’s a peek at Linda Kage’s The Trouble with Tomboys

THE TOMBOY

Pilot B.J. Gilmore is Tommy Creek, Texas’s tough tomboy who loves to fly planes and gamble and doesn’t give a whip what anyone thinks or says about her…until Grady Rawlings steps into her life.

PLUS THE WIDOWER
Heir to an oil dynasty, Grady has inner demons to battle. Ever since his wife and unborn child died two and half years ago, he’s developed a deep-seated hatred for sympathy and can’t handle anyone feeling sorry for him or treating him like some pitiful widower.

EQUALS TROUBLE IN TEXAS
Grady hires B.J,’s plane service to fly him to Houston for an overnight business trip. While there, she coaxes him into accompanying her to a late dinner, where she decides it’s time for him to move on with his life. A month later, she turns up pregnant with his baby, and neither of them is prepared for the chaos that follows.

“I heard about five minutes ago that someone had knocked up B.J. Gilmore.”That finally evoked the response he’d expected. Her face drained of color and she dropped her bag of popcorn, spilling kernels around her bare feet.
“Who told you that?”
Grady folded his arms and stared hard. “I overheard Gabe Watson telling Ulrick Pullson about it at Herb’s Quick Stop. Both of them already knew.”
“Who?” she demanded, and then she shook her head furiously. “I…I just wasn’t sure how to say it,” she answered quietly. “I mean, was there any way to break it to you easily?”
Grady opened his mouth, but B.J. hurried to add, “One thing was sure, I definitely wasn’t going to tell anyone else until you knew.”
She stopped suddenly as if just realizing something. Then she scowled and pressed her hands to her hips, snapping, “Wait a second. What even makes you think this is your kid?”
She’d already given it away, but his answer was a quiet, heartfelt, “Because I’m not that lucky.”
B.J. looked like she was going to cry, and he felt like a heel for saying such a thing. He wasn’t typically a rude man. But B.J. wasn’t the type to break down and bawl when her feelings were hurt either. So why did the two of them together seem to bring out the worst in each other?
God, he wanted to scrub his face with his hands and mutter, “What a disaster,” but he didn’t want to hurt her any further. She already looked like she was on the edge and might crumble any second. He sighed then and really did scrub his face with his hands.
“I guess we’ll need to get married,” he announced, sounding none too pleased.

REVIEWS:Long and Short of It Reviews (5 Books) “The Trouble with Tomboys is one of those novels that will stick with you long after you read The End. If you’re looking for an unforgettable read with memorable characters and a story that will stick with you, look no farther than The Trouble with Tomboys. Oh and Kudos to you Ms. Linda Kage, keep up the excellent work.”
Single Titles (4 Stars) “Trouble With Tomboys throws together a by the rules follower Grady, with a feisty wildcat B.J causing quite a ruckus in their wake. B.J. is not one to beat around the bush; her refreshing honesty will have her winning a place in readers hearts. Enormously entertaining and a difficult book to put down.”
Happily Ever After Reviews (4 Stars) “Linda Kage has done it again in a tale where everyone deserves a second chance even a tomboy like B.J. My heart went out for Grady and the heartache he went through in life. Now B.J. is definitely not your usual heroine for she is feisty, courageous but often times scared of life. I loved that these two are so opposite of one another yet have one thing in common they both need love. The passion they share yet deny is so strong it is hard for them to ignore. Linda definitely has a naughty mind when it comes to between them yet so clever in the way they get together. Loved it and can’t wait for more.”
THE TROUBLE WITH TOMBOYS
–Contemporary adult Romance Hot
–buy link : http://www.thewildrosepress.com/the-trouble-with-tomboys-p-4158.html
–Awards : The Trouble with Tomboys was voted BOOK OF THE WEEK at The Long and Short of It Reviews site for the week of August 30, 2010 through September 3, 2010.
–Video link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p34LALqd2uA&feature=player_embedded

And tomorrow Linda Kage herself!

Don’t forget to stop by and leave a comment. Everyone’s name will go into a drawing for great prizes at the end of the week. And don’t forget to come back each Wednesday in February for another chance to win.

And did I mention there’s a grand prize at the end of the tour…?

The Stillburrow Crush

As promised, here’s a a look at Linda Kage’s young adult romance The Stillburrow Crush.
THE STILLBURROW CRUSH

Sixteen year old, Carrie Paxton, isn’t the most popular girl in her small town of Stillburrow. But that’s never concerned her before. Her life revolves around her writing, and she loves her job as the student editor of the school paper.
But when she gets assigned to interview the football team’s beloved quarterback, she takes one look into Luke Carter’s blue eyes and is a goner. Suddenly, she doesn’t like her lowly rank so much.
Then her dreamy, popular crush surprises her when he starts to act as if he likes her in return. But there’s no way Luke Carter could possibly ever like a nobody like Carrie Paxton.
Is there?

And here’s your teaser…

I turned to stare out the passenger-side window,focusing on an old house that had been abandoned for as long as I could remember. I said, “They really ought to tear that place down. Just look at that sagging roof.”
Luke gave a soft laugh behind me. “That would involve change.”
“What do you mean?”
“Haven’t you ever noticed this town’s stuck in a time capsule? It’s like we’ve never heard of the term progress. I mean, there’s hardly any cell phone towers around and forget about high speed internet.”
“High speed what?” I asked, glancing back to give him a puzzled look.
He opened his mouth to explain, when it dawned on him I was joking. “You always have to be a smart aleck, don’t you?”
We shared a smile.
I looked into his face and relished these minutes where I could ogle him selfishly. I knew I should give him the information he wanted from me now, but I could only stare. It took me a moment to notice his expression, though.
His gaze had been roaming my face but had paused on my left ear. When he snorted out a surprised laugh, I frowned.
He pointed a finger toward my hair. “Uh, I think the wind messed it up some.”
I patted my head, my face flaming.
“Here,” Luke said, and flipped down his visor,lighting up the mirror underneath. I looked up and groaned. Not only had the wind caught a hold of my hair and ripped it half out of its ponytail, it had also knotted and twisted it into a healthy-sized rat’s nest.
I tried to ignore the fact that Luke was sitting next to me—and already knew exactly what the disaster looked like—and ripped the holder out of my hair. I combed through the mess with my fingers but there were knots everywhere. When I caught him staring again, I glared.
“What?” I demanded. But he continued to gawk. I patted at my hair and wondered what he could possibly be thinking about the mess.
“I’ve never seen it all down before,” he said.
Startled, I glanced back in the mirror. I’d seen it down millions of times. I just didn’t leave the house with it loose. There was too much of it to let it run wild. I tried to see it how Luke must see it. It was curly—so curly it bobbed. Tight little curls framed my face like a border full of personality. From the corner of my eye, I saw Luke lift his hand toward one spiraling lock.
But when I turned to him, he lowered his fingers and shifted his attention out the window. I stared at his profile for a second, breathing hard.
“It’s pretty,” he said, more to the windshield than to me.
I wanted him to lift his hand again. I wanted him to touch my hair.
“I think yours is prettier.”
He laughed. “Guys do not have pretty hair.”
“Well, yours is.”
I reached over and touched his hair. I thought maybe if I touched his, he might get the guts to touch mine. But at contact, I gasped.
“It’s so soft.”
I ran my fingers through the part that always curled around a cowlick when it got wet. I scooted over, leaning across the console between us.
“Carrie.”
His voice sounded strained so I looked down. I hadn’t realized I’d moved so close. But when I gazed into his face, we were only a breath apart. I was positioned a little above him so I could reach his hair. He lifted his face up to stare at me. His eyes were a blazing blue.
That’s when he touched my hair. He drew his fingers through the curls to cup my head. Then he tilted his chin to the side and pulled me down. I was shocked when our mouths connected. He was kissing me.
Oh my God, Luke Carter was kissing me.

–REVIEWS:Long and Short of it : Aurora (4.5 Suns) “Ms. Kage also has a gift for unusual, meaningful description. Tactile details enhance the evocative aura at the outset. We are beautifully in tune with our main character’s emotions.”
Book Wenches (Rating: 4.5) “I certainly wish there had been more stories like this when I was growing up, during that time that I devoured pointless romance novels by the score. The Stillburrow Crush adds a little substance to the fluff, and I thought it to be very well done. Nicely done, Ms. Kage.” Night Owl Reviews (4.75 Stars) “Not very often is a book hard for me to put down, but I found one, and I absolutely adore it. The Stillburrow Crush, written by Linda Kage is a rare gem to book lovers…The Stillburrow Crush has already made it into my book discussions, and I have already recommended this book be read. Linda Kage is an author I will whole heartedly follow…To conclude, The Stillburrow Crush Is a MUST read and I hope girls and women of all ages read this. The Stillburrow Crush more than exceeded my expectations.”
Novel Reaction (4 Stars) “I really enjoyed the characters of this story and how they reacted to different situations. It was a very riveting book because of the ups and downs of Carrie and Luke’s relationship, and I never wanted to put it down!!”
The Romance Studio (5 Hearts) “This was a hauntingly beautiful young adult novel. I loved the fact that it was such an authentic representation of life. The setting was wonderful, the whole community came vividly to life with each word. The characters were compelling because they were average small town residents with typical issues. I found I was easily able to relate to everyone. It was refreshing to have a heroine who was not stunningly gorgeous, rich and popular, not someone with too much money and not enough sense. I loved how the relationship between Carrie and Luke developed; it was so genuine and sweet. There’s nothing I like better than a good cry while reading and this book gave me that. It also gave me moments of laughter, and it gave me a happily ever after. This was such a poignant novel that I just know I will read it again and again. This author is definitely going on my must-read list. I highly recommend you pick up this book and be sure to get a copy for any young woman in your life.”
–released February 26, 2010
–buy link : http://www.thewildrosepress.com/the-stillburrow-crush-p-3892.html?zenid=eb173d435ff79db3f83ce5bbd6afa07a
–Awards : The Stillburrow Crush finalled in the 2011 EPIC ebook contest. Winners will be announced in March 2011.
–Video link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3Zfl2Fiq4Y&feature=player_embedded

Tomorrow, I’ll have the teaser for The Trouble with Tomboys and finally on Wednesday Linda herself!

Linda Kage coming soon…

I’m so excited to announce that I am participating in a blog tour with a few of my fellow Wild Rose Press authors. This week I will be hosting rose  Linda Kage, talented author of young adult romance and adult contemporary romance. Here’s a teaser to get us started…

DELINQUENT DADDY
IT’S NOT EVERY DAY YOU LEARN YOU HAVE A NINE-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER
Boston Kincaid’s life is forever changed when he reads the note from Cassidy Trenton, who’s looking for her daddy. Vividly remembering the girl’s mother, Boston is compelled to learn the truth about Cassidy’s paternity.
Single working mother Ellie Trenton is completely bowled over to find her old college flame, whom she hasn’t seen in ten years, loitering on her front porch when she comes home from work one day.
At the sight of each other, Boston and Ellie’s decade apart melts away, and that old chemistry between them flares back to life. But trust doesn’t come easily, and old wounds never healed properly.
Can Boston and Ellie learn to forgive and forget so they can experience the love they never shared, or will child custody battles keep them apart forever?

–Contemporary adult Romance Spicy
–released October 22, 2010
–buy link : http://www.thewildrosepress.com/delinquent-daddy-p-4274.html
–Video link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqegfvC_rbc&feature=player_embedded

Here’s a glimpse to further entice…

Dear Mr. Montgomery Kincaid,
My name is Cassidy Trenton. I am nine years and ten months old. I am looking for my dad. My mom is Ellie Trenton. She will not tell me his name, but she met him in college. She said he was the son of an astronaut and named after a state capital. I read about you in the magazine. You married the famous model Shannon March. They said you went to the same college my mom went to. They said your dad was a real-life astronaut. You are named after the capital of Alabama. Are you my dad? Please come meet me.
Sincerely,
Cassie Trenton
Frozen with horror, Boston could only gape. The blood congealed in his veins.
Yes, he’d done it now. He’d thought Ellie’s name, and look what atrocity had emerged.
Dear God. She’d even dubbed the baby Cassie—the very name he’d chosen.
His stomach churned.
This was wrong. All wrong. It wasn’t possible. That baby was dead.
He clearly remembered Ellie saying, “There is no baby. The baby’s gone.”
“Umm…guys?” came Olivia’s voice from beside him. A moment later, Monty tore the letter from his grasp.
Boston lifted his face.
His brother’s jaw sagged. “Holy Shit, Boston,” he said, glancing down at the child’s scrawl. “This letter was meant for you.”
Boston shook his head briefly to deny it. “No,” he rasped. “It can’t be. Ellie…she told me she had a miscarriage.”

–REVIEWS:Rites of Romance (Rating: 4.5) “I really enjoyed this book. The story is a contemporary romance and the story line very well written. The reader will laugh and cry with the characters and root for them to become a couple again. Boston is a great male lead. He is smart, sexy, fun, but real. He has his flaws, he has made mistakes and he learns and changes throughout the book. Ellie is strong willed and will fight to the death for what she believes is right for her child. She is misguided at times, but she also grows throughout the story. Both characters learn more about themselves and what they lost all those years ago. Trying to overcome a hurtful past full of misunderstandings and lies makes the journey back to one another difficult and at times frustrating even for the reader.”
Single Titles (5 Stars) “Linda Kage has become one of my favorite authors, I love that her stories or so real that you feel like you are peeking into someone’s life while reading. Delinquent Daddy captures you from the first page and takes you on a wonderful ride. I loved how there were flashbacks to the days Ellie and Boston were dating and you could see the ups and downs of the relationship while they were in College.”
Long and Short of It (4 Stars) “Ms. Kage keeps Delinquent Daddy moving at a fast pace with a careful mix of flashbacks of Boston and Ellie’s college romance and present day events. Delinquent Daddy is a charming family oriented novel that you do not want to miss.”
Happily Ever After Reviews (4 Tea Cups) “Linda Kage has done a remarkable job in this story from the beginning to the end. I loved that Cassidy desperately wants her daddy and will do anything she can to see it possible. Now Ellie and Boston are two people who anybody can see clearly that they still love each other. Linda did a beautiful job in showing that two people can still love each other after all the heartache and pain. Definitely a great book to read and can’t wait for more of Linda’s work.”

Come on back tomorrow and read a little about Lind’s young adult romance The Stillburrow Crush.

Ta for now…