Guest Author & Giveaway: Christie Ridgway featuring the SEAL of My Dreams anthology

Friday, November 11

 
I first found out about the SEAL of My Dreams charity anthology benefiting our Veterans when I spotted the cover.  Yeah, I'm a complete cover 'ho what can I say :)  But really, I don't think you can blame me once you see the cover that made me stop in my virtual web tracks and learn more about it.  Which of course led me to contemporary romance author Christie Ridgway, and me hounding the poor woman to be my guest today :)  I may have been helped in my quest by her slightly incapacitated state due to a broken leg, and quite possibly some pain meds...but that's neither her nor there :)

Author Christie Ridgway is my special guest today to share the evolution of the SEAL of My Dreams charity anthology and even a little bit about the image on the cover LOL.  Read and enjoy!


When I threw out a little tweet suggesting a charity anthology featuring Navy SEALs...well, I was throwing out a little tweet suggesting a charity anthology featuring Navy SEALs. I didn't really think...I couldn't really imagine...the idea was tantalizing but oh-so-daunting... Alison Kent was the first to send me a direct message on Twitter. "How can I help make this happen?" And I gulped and replied, "I guess we start asking authors."

And then authors started saying "yes."

And the daunting idea became oh-so-much-more tantalizing.

The romance writing community is a small one. Authors know each other through conferences and publisher email loops, through Romance Writers of America and through moments of pure fan-dom that endear us to our fellow writers (Robyn Carr remembers my thrilled gasp via email the first time we corresponded). So the roster of authors came together within short days as we contacted who we knew and they asked who they knew and thought might have the time to write a romantic short story featuring a Navy SEAL. (Turns out we all had to make time, of course, but that's why they call it a labor of love!)

Bell Bridge Books (a very successful small press originated by romance writers) stepped up to turn our stories into a professional product. With their help, our anthology is available in e-edition and print and they helped get the word out everywhere. Bloggers, reviewers, and readers are doing their part too (thanks, Seductive Musings!) for this worthy cause. And that cause? All proceeds benefit the non-profit Veterans Medical Research Corporation, which funds medical research benefiting service men and women from all branches of the military. For example, they are doing great things to help with the health challenges of PTSD and TBI (traumatic brain injury).

When you buy the anthology, not only are you supporting such a worthy cause, but you are getting eighteen stories featuring Navy SEALs. Some are set in the worlds of favorite series, some kick-off new series, some are holiday-themed. All honor the courage and sacrifice of those who serve in the military--and those who hold them in their hearts. If you love romance, I guarantee you'll love SEAL of My Dreams!

Last, a word on our cover. Check it out again. That's no model, that's a real Navy SEAL and the photo, from 2007, was what inspired eighteen stories of romance. Many thanks to that anonymous hero for his service to our country and for his part in our project.

Many of the authors in the anthology have ties to the military. My dad is an Army vet, my father-in-law a retired Navy aviator. Give a shout out to a service member or veteran you know (or just a shout out of support to all our military).



Here's an exclusive excerpt from Christie's own story in the SEAL of My Dreams anthology, Signed, SEALed, Delivered...I'm Yours!


They stared at each other again, that palpable pull between them running as strong as the day before. One summer, Mandy had been caught in an ocean undertow. This was like that—a current more powerful than her strength and her will was carrying her toward this man. “Josh,” she whispered, her heart aching with bittersweet yearning.

His eyes closed for a moment. “I know—”

Knuckles rapped on the hotel room door. They both started, and then Josh moved to the entry to allow in the room service cart. The waiter set it on the balcony outside her 31st-floor room. Dusk was falling and the air was warm but not unbearably humid. They feasted on a beans and rice dish, fresh fish, and a delicious concoction of corn-based dough, meat, vegetables, and spices wrapped in plantain leaves. For dessert, there were slices of tropical fruit.

Realizing she hadn't eaten much since the morning before, Mandy ate heartily. She felt greedy, storing up the moments with Josh sitting across her table. Her leg accidentally bumped his, and he captured it between his knees, a gentle clasp that sent her pulse soaring and her skin flushing warm.

She'd never expected to feel this happy again. And she'd never felt as happy as she'd been the day before. His voice echoed in her head then, the SEAL motto. The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday. It was so easy, so right, when the two of them were together.

At full dark, he wheeled the cart through the doors to her room and then out into the hall. They returned to the balcony, sitting in side-by-side chairs as they watched the bright lights of the city twinkle like holiday glitter in the darkness. “We're officially in the Christmas season,” she said. “Where will you be on the 25th?”

“I'm based in San Diego,” he replied. “It's where my family lives too.”

She shot him a quick glance. “That's not far from L.A.”

“You're right.” He reached over and took her hand. Bending his head, he studied it like a precious object, stroking the palm, curling each finger then straightening it again.

A shiver rolled up the inside of her arm, and a voice whispered in her ear. You could have a long-distance romance. It's not even a “long” distance. If you drove south and he drove north, you'd meet within an hour.

It wouldn't last, of course, because she wanted to have that home-every-night guy. All her life she'd wished for that, but she could have Josh for a little while. Maybe a not-so-little while.

“The thing is, Mandy,” he said now, running the back of her hand against the clean-shaven surface of his warm cheek, “I don't know when I'll be returning to California. We go wheels up again tomorrow. No return date guaranteed.”

She could only have him tonight.
Want more?  Check out the teasers for each one of the stories in the anthology here :)


Thank you so much Christie, not only for being my guest today, but also for having the idea to do this, as well as generously giving your time and talent in organizing this charity anthology to support our troops and our veterans!  Not only do readers get the opportunity to give back in a small way to those who serve our country by buying SEAL of My Dreams, but we get great reads too by almost twenty bestselling authors....doesn't get much better than that, my friends!  BTW Christie says the cover is even more gorgeous in person...just in case you need another reason to want it ;)

If you'd like to learn more about author Christie Ridgway and the contemporary romances  she writes you can find her at www.christieridgway.com, her blog, & on Facebook, Twitter.

To celebrate our men in women in uniform, our veterans, and the release of SEAL of My Dreams on this fine Veteran's Day, author Christie Ridgway would like to giveaway a signed set of her Three Kisses trilogy which includes Crush on You (which was named the best contemporary romance of 2010 by RT), Then He Kissed Me, and Can't Hurry Love to one very lucky Musings follower.  Here's how you can enter to win:

(psst... here's a not so subtle hint:  now would be a perfect time to purchase the anthology and earn extra entries for this awesome and generous giveaway AND please share this post on Facebook and Twitter to help share the love about SEAL of My Dreams)

Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory: Have a relative or friend in the military, or who is a veteran? Please share a bit about them in a comment, AND if you have a favorite way to support our troops through letters or care packages please leave links so that others can learn about them in case they might be interested.  I know I'd like to send out a few care packages this holiday season and would like to know how to go about it so I could use your help...cause it would save me lots of time in locating them myself :)  (good for 1 entry)
  • Mandatory: You MUST be a Google Friend Connect (GFC) follower in order to be eligible to win (unfortunately an email subscriber, or subscription in Google reader, and a follower are not the same thing so make sure you are signed up as a follower if you'd like to win this book)
  • If you have a blog, or even if you don't, you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they successfully enter to win and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries. You can blog about it with a link to this post, post it on Facebook, Twitter, email...or even word of mouth (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) . Please note that to earn the points they must mention your GFC name so that I can match you.
  • Purchase any item from the Seductive Musings Amazon store by using this link, or the Amazon widget contained within this post and email a copy of your purchase receipt to me no later than the deadline to enter (email available in sidebar). Sorry purchases made prior to this date do not apply, and link contained in this post must be used. No faxes or snail mail copies are allowed. No purchases are necessary to win. (good for 25 entries, or 50 entries if a purchase is made from the featured author's available titles)
How to enter:
  • You can choose to enter as many different ways that you want, but please place all of your entries in ONE comment 
Rules and disclaimers:
  • This contest is open to US addresses only.  No PO Boxes.
  • You must be at least 18 years or older, or of legal age in your country
  • The contest will end on November 14th at 11:59 pm EST and winner will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winner(s) will be selected using Random.org
  • The winner(s) will have THREE days from the date they are posted to provide a mailing address. If you do not contact me within three days a replacement winner will be selected. NO EXCEPTIONS
  • The book(s) will be mailed directly from the publisher or author and no substitutions are allowed
  • Winners will be subject to one copy per household, which means that if you win the same title in two or more contests, that you will only receive one copy of the title in the mail
  • Seductive Musings is not responsible for prizes that are not honored, distributed in a timely manner, lost, stolen, or damaged during transit 
  • All giveaways are subject to change/cancellation without prior written notice
Good Luck!


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*Seductive Musings is an Amazon affiliate and receives a very small referral fee for purchases made via the links on the blog and through the Seductive Musings Amazon Store. Read the full disclosure here.

14 Comments:

Jane November 11, 2011 at 12:32 AM  

My cousin was in the army and spent several years in Germany. I have another friend who was in the National Guard. He just retired a few months ago.

Christie Ridgway November 11, 2011 at 10:29 AM  

Hi, Jane! I hope your cousin and friend have a wonderful Veterans Day!

erin November 11, 2011 at 11:36 AM  

Thanks for a fabulous post spotlighting an even more fabulous project!!! I'm on my way to purchase this antho and I can't wait to read it!!!!

In every generation of my family, there have been at least one or two that have served in the military. Let me tell you, times are lively watching the Army/Navy game :)

My dear cousin served *3* tours in Iraq as an Army Ranger and we are so thankful he was not ever seriously hurt.

Thanks again! and Hope you all have an enjoyable and wonderful Day!

Christie Ridgway November 11, 2011 at 12:22 PM  

Hi, Erin! I really hope you enjoy the anthology. I'm so glad your cousin came home safely.

Estella November 11, 2011 at 4:05 PM  

I have 2 sons and 2 step sons who are Navy veterans of the first Gulf War.

Kathleen O November 11, 2011 at 4:48 PM  

My father was a veteran of WWII. He was in the RAF and served in the D-Day invasion as well as in Burma. For which he recieved the Burma Star...
He is gone now, but his service to his country will always be remembered by his family.

I love this book and I think it is wonderful that writers have come together for such a worthy cause. Bravo Ladies, Bravo...

Christie Ridgway November 11, 2011 at 7:31 PM  

Estella: Wow. Four sons. You are a brave lady! Thank you for =your= service as their mom.

Kathleen: Okay, now I have to go google the Burma star. I can't recall where I read it this week, but I saw another veteran's account and he also was in Burma. Hats off to your dad and all he did.

Barbara E. November 11, 2011 at 7:35 PM  

My nephew just left last week for his third tour of duty - he was deployed to Afghanistan. I just saw a post by him that he's doing okay, Facebook is awesome for alleviating the family's fears for his safety, at least temporarily. I think this is an fantastic anthology and I'm looking forward to getting my copy.

Barbed1951 at aol dot com
GFC Follower - Barbara E.

LilMissMolly November 12, 2011 at 11:38 AM  

Loved the post and really appreciated the excerpt too!
My hubby was in the Army in the first Persian Gulf War. He got out of the Army in March 1992, and we got married 10 days later. :) My Grandfather was also in the Navy during WWII. My daughter who is in high school is currently looking into the Navy's Nuclear program for her career. So, yes, I support our military! :D
lvsgund at gmail.com (GFC - LilMissMolly)

donnas November 13, 2011 at 1:15 AM  

My dad was in the army but that was a long time ago.

We like to send care packages at Christmas. SOS groups always have addresses for military overseas.

bacchus76 at myself dot com

librarypat November 14, 2011 at 1:39 AM  

My husband retired from the Air Force after 24 years. He was a B-52 crew member and the an FB111 navigator. He served during the Vietnam War and was part of the Linebacker flights that bombed Hanoi which led to the end of the war. We had some great assignments and enjoyed our time in. We just attended a reunion of the FB111 crew members. It is a relatively small corps of people . It is amazing that when we get together with others from the unit, even after many years, it is just like no time has passed.

We have assisted some groups in sending things over to the troops. You need to have the name of a specific service member to send a package to. We knew someone whose son was deployed and we had the youth group send their goodies to him to be distributed to the unit.

GFC follower, librarypat.

Tweeted the giveaway.
http://twitter.com/#!/pbbearclaw/status/135969219752886273

Thanks for hosting the giveaway.

Sheree November 14, 2011 at 3:39 AM  

I have a cousin who used to be a Marine and my boyfriend and his father are Air Force veterans.

ironss [at] gmail [dot] com
GFC follower

Carol L. November 15, 2011 at 3:13 PM  

My Dad was in WWll as were all his brothers. The 4 of them served in different branches. My brother served during Viet Nam and both my sons are career military. One is Specaial Forces and is deployed now.
If you go over to Kim at SOS Aloha
http://sosaloha.blogspot.com/
she has addresses for sending Christmas cards and packages. :)
This is such a wonderful cause that I'll be ordering Seal Of My Dreams payday. :) That's some cover eh ? :)
Carol L
Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

Carol L. November 15, 2011 at 3:15 PM  

Forgot to say I'm a GFC follower under Lucky47
Carol L
Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

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