Thursday, November 29, 2012

Welcome Thursdays with Taryn visitor DC Thome aka @DaveThomeWriter #author of Palm Springs Heat #excerpt

Thursdays with Taryn

DC Thome
Please help me in welcoming fellow romance writer, D.C. Thome, author of Palm Springs Heat, the first book in his new Fast Lane Series.

What book(s) most influenced you as a writer?
My all-time favorite book is The Great Gatsby, and I aspire to write the kind of pretty prose F. Scott Fitzgerald seemed to write naturally. Romantic in its own way. But I was also a big Hemingway fan back in high school, and those two guys—the fancy one and the succinct one—are always duking it out when I’m at the keyboard.
The romance novels I’ve read are mostly ones recommended by my wife Mary Jo, and she’s a big-time Jennifer Crusie fan. I like Crusie’s humor and offbeat characters, in part because they’re like the humor and characters I wrote before I ever read any Crusie. (I wrote a bunch of screenplays before turning to novels.) Faking It and Bet Me show how idiosyncrasies can be used to make characters more real and likable. Plus, I think Crusie likes men and her heroes seem pretty real to me.

What book do you read over and over again?
This may sound pathetic, but it’s Superfan, a graphic novel I got when I was in seventh grade. It’s a Mad Magazine book about a nerd who drinks a potion and becomes the greatest quarterback ever. Absurdist sports science fiction. A real genre-bender.

Thursday Trio-
1)      Movie- It’s a Wonderful Life
2)      Music- Sex Pistols (that’s right—It’s a Wonderful Life and Sex Pistols)
3)      Decadent Dessert- Breyer’s Natural Vanilla ice cream liberally dusted with a  powder of finely ground Lindt 72% cocoa bar

What’s the most interesting or bizarre bit of trivia you’ve learned from researching for a novel?
That some women are offended by the word “panties.” Seriously. I thought that was the word for women’s underwear, but Mary Jo informed me it’s a stupid, juvenile term and I’ve never heard her say it. Thinking back over thirty-three years…I have no proof otherwise. She asked me how I would feel if she called my underwear things like “grundies” and “pantaloons,” and I said, “I call my underwear ‘grundies’ and ‘pantaloons.’ I’m all for using stupid, juvenile terms for underwear all the time.”

Novel on your Nightstand:
Who/what are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading a nonfiction book called “Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Belly.” It’s by a cardiologist from Milwaukee, and now I’m terrified of bread and pasta. Not brownies, though.

Whom would you cast as your Main Characters/Hero/Heroine if your book became a movie?
I thought Lara looked like Julianne Hough before I had any idea who Julianne Hough was. Nina Dobrev or Frieda Pinto would make a good Sushma. Or Mila Kunis. I wouldn’t mind Mila Kunis playing any role in any movie made from any book or screenplay I’ve written. Still, if Nina could convince her boyfriend Ian Somerhalder to play Clay that would be nice.

Palm Springs Heat (Fast Lane Romance #1)

Can an ordinary woman make a billionaire bachelor fall in love with her…so she can dump him as soon as he’s hooked? Lara Dixon sets out to make it happen with infamous international playboy Clay Creighton.

Lara embarks on a mission of justice, certain that Creighton’s Fast Lane media empire, with its philosophy of “fast women, fast cars and fast living,” encourages men to stray from happy homes. And by “men,” Lara means her ex, a Fast Lane devotee who turned out to have had not a single shred of respect for women.

Lara finds backers to help her get revenge on the notorious, but decidedly handsome, tycoon. With new fabulous clothes and a glorious makeover, she infiltrates Clay’s inner circle and uses her research about his likes and dislikes to charm him into believing she’s not just another L.A. woman looking to romance a rich guy.

But as she becomes steeped in the Fast Lane culture during a weekend involving an exhilarating ride in a very fast car and passionate moments in Clay’s very exotic Palm Spring resort, “Heat,” Lara discovers nothing is what she expected. Especially Clay.

Women’s perceptions of him, it turns out, are based on fiction—the products of a skilled public relations team. Lara’s startled by how well Clay treats her, how much they have in common—and how much she’s falling for him.

So now, Lara has a new problem: Can she put the brakes on her plan to destroy Clay and make the turn toward a happily-ever-after instead?

This light-hearted romp into today’s jet set includes a cast of wacky assistants, bubbly fashionistas and unexpected enemies—and friends.

Palm Springs Heat is a fast, fun read—a contemporary romance with a touch of intrigue and a reminder that nothing, not even a waterfall, is exactly what it seems.


The limo jerked hard to the right, sending Lara Dixon sliding across the slick leather seat.
That can’t be good.
The man seated across from her—the man Gina had found to introduce her to Clay Creighton—scrambled upright and banged on the Plexiglas partition separating them from the driver, a uniformed woman who had quarter-inch silver hair peeking from beneath a livery cap.
“What the hell?” he demanded as the partition slid open. “Did you hit something?”
The driver met Lara’s questioning gaze in the rearview mirror. “Oops.” The partition slid shut.
That really can’t be good.
Lara flipped down a mirror to fix her hair. Her natural color shimmered through the semisweet chocolate veneer. Hard to get used to after thirty-two years as a blonde.
“Just a bump in the road.” Anton Roche worked his neck like a preening turkey and settled back in as the limo raced past Paradise Cove on the road to Malibu. “As I was saying, the girl thought she was the aurora borealis, Liberty’s torch and the leprechaun’s pot o’ gold rolled into one. But she knew she looked even hotter in my bustier.”
Lara suppressed a sigh. How does Gina put up with this guy? The lingerie designer had prattled about his life with the glitterati from the minute he’d picked her up at her humble Santa Monica apartment. She wished he’d let her concentrate on this new experience of riding in luxury. After tonight, she might never step into a limo again. Then again, Roche had put his turkey neck on the line to talk up Lara to Clay Creighton.
He has his own axe to grind, but I should at least pretend to be interested.
“Why is it the ‘STP’ bustier?” Lara asked, though after weeks of researching Creighton’s Fast Lane empire, she knew the answer. Never hurts to practice. You’ll be lying all the time if everything goes right tonight.
Roche straightened with pride. “‘Seconds to Paradise.’ It’s goddamn brilliant. Builds up the bust—and a man can unhook it one-handed like that.” He snapped his fingers. “You know how much money Creighton’s made from that thing? It’s the biggest seller in the Toy Store. But do I get the credit?” He looked more closely at Lara. “It wouldn’t have been a bad idea for you to wear one tonight.”
Lara had considered buying one from Fast Lane’s notorious online gift shop back when she was married. “I thought STP had something to do with gasoline.”
“Yeah, well…Fast Lane: Racy cars, the high life…and all that.”
Fast women, fast cars, fast living. I know all about Fast Lane and Clay Creighton.
Lara looked out the window as Roche chattered on. The sun drifting down through the maritime haze toward Point Dume reflected in her diamond-blue eyes. The conflagration of red, orange and purple looked no different from here than it did from the bluffs on the other side of Santa Monica Bay.
The limo jerked again as they turned up a gravel road. Lara’s heart quickened. We must be close.
“We’re here!” Roche announced as the car turned into a driveway that twisted skyward through desert terrain. “Are you ready?”
Lara thought about the weeks she’d spent in the gym. The coaching sessions on how to lie with a mysterious woman whose name and accent changed daily. The hours poring through the enormously popular Fast Lane website, reading Creighton’s daily encyclicals on materialism and carnality until she could easily extemporize on the advantages of gadgets she’d never use and the attributes of running backs she’d never cheer for.
But everything she learned did nothing to change her opinion: Fast Lane was nothing but a place where men like her asshole ex, Kyle, could leer at naked women and find validation for believing they deserved their own harems.
 An instructional guide on how to screw over your wife.
She closed her eyes and her mind to escape Roche’s jabber. When she had approached Gina Wray, creator of the pro-woman website, with the idea of infiltrating Fast Lane to reveal its sordid secrets, Lara had never expected to be the one doing the infiltrating.
“I know plenty of people who’d like to bring Clay Creighton down—people who’d pay big bucks for an exposé,” Gina had told Lara. “Putting an end to The Rotation wouldn’t be so bad, either.”
The Rotation consisted of three women who were at Creighton’s beck and call 24/7. Every six months, he dumped the most senior member and introduced a new plaything. Relationships arced, he said, starting out passionate and ending up routine, so a man had to bring in “new talent” to keep things exciting. Gina’s plan was for Lara to become the first woman in The Rotation’s disgraceful sixteen-year history to dump him instead.
“I don’t know,” Lara had protested. “I’m not exactly Fast Lane material.”
“The material is there,” Gina had assured her. “You just have to move it around a little.”
Nothing’s simple. The world is warm and cool and open and mysterious and bright and muddled—all at the same time. How do you live with that?
Lara opened her eyes to see Roche staring at her chest. He frowned. “Can’t you show a little more cleavage?”
Lara reflexively looked down the ruffled collar of her dress—a sleeveless midnight blue Roland Mouret crepe Gina had purchased for this night. Lara marveled at how easily the twenty-five-hundred-dollar price tag convinced her the dress fit and felt better than anything she’d ever worn.
But does it look good enough?
Even with her new body and hair, even with every follicle below her forehead sugar-waxed and ripped clean, her nails filed, polished and buffed to a mother-of-pearl sheen, her feet soaked in lavender-scented Dead Sea salt water and tucked neatly into a pair of Guillaume Hinfray platform slingbacks, even after two months of Gina’s pep talks, she had to ask this clown, “Do you believe I can even get into The Rotation?”
Roche leaned back against the velvety leather, his beady black eyes taking in Lara’s slender five-foot-eight-inch frame, long legs, toned and spray-tanned arms. She held steady under his gaze. He reached up and pushed a lock of hair off her forehead. She knocked his hand away and moved the hair back.
“Eh,” Roche said. “Stranger things have happened.”
Just what I needed: a big boost of confidence.
The limo crested a hillock and slowed to a stop. A busty young woman wearing the lowest-cut Lakers jersey Lara had ever seen opened the door. “Welcome to the ICE House!”

Palm Springs Heat is a KDP Select book, so it’s only available from Amazon and is eligible as a free download to Kindle Prime members.

You can find out more about DC Thome on his blog 

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