I think this post will give you an idea of what other kinds of stress an author has to deal with besides, you know, putting their heart on a plate in front of the world when they push publish. It will probably explain why I write BDSM romance with a healthy dose of humor as well. My own alpha male (Honey) is my stressful muse. It’s true. I frequently blog about our life together. Actually, he came up with one of the cleverest ideas for a scene in my latest book Provoked. It involved Monopoly tokens, PVC tape in a rather interesting design on my naked heroine, and the hero mapping out a mystery. I can’t share a snippet of that as there’s too much plot information in the scene, but I’ll post a different fun scene after I reveal my shame.

Ready? Wait. Before I start I want to thank Nikki for having me! Thanks so much! It’s fun to get out and about once in awhile. *Looks around* You’ve got a nice place here. Alrighty…here’s a slice of my crazy life.

For weeks I’ve been secretly stressing out about my physical wellbeing. I’ve doubled up on my calcium intake and pumped up other essential vitamins too because I feared I was shrinking. A sad fact of life and an all-around scary thought for me, as I’m already the shortest one in my household.

So, you can imagine my angst when I go to brush my teeth one morning and the faucet, sink, and counter feels closer to my eye level. (If you’ve ever worked in your kitchen with high heels on, or just stood up to your counter with higher shoes than you’d ordinarily wear, you get my point) It feels different. Anyway, there I am thinking: Boy that’s weird, but you know I didn’t want to get all crazy as it might be a one-time thing or something.

Then later that day I’m on my treadmill and I really start freaking out. The spot (it’s a knot in the wood, actually) on the armoire that I’m used to focusing in on when I do my run is now two inches higher than before. I know very well that the armoire hasn’t grown, so I’m shrinking! And at stupendously accelerated rate. My God! The way I have it figured – I’ll be as tall as our dog in less than a week!

*Insert me sweating here while my thoughts race*

What’s wrong with me? Scoliosis? Dowager hump? Arthritis? Seriously, I’m so preoccupied trying to diagnosis myself — Osteoporosis? That I’m beginning to feel sick. I’m suddenly tired, lethargic, depressed. And every time I get on the treadmill —you gotta know I have this mental visual of me getting fatter because I’m squashing and the weight has to redistribute somewhere, right? Hey I’ve always maintained that I’m too short for my weight and now this? I see that knot in the wood—that marker of my former self and I want to cry. Scream. Tell Honey I’m going to be even more “midgety” than before. Days go by until finally I can’t live alone with this horrible, terrible, tragic, secret.

So I tell Honey. Here’s the conversation:

Shrinking, huh?” This is serious and he seems unimpressed.

What am I? Depressed would be stating the case mildly. “Yes, I think I better go see somebody.”

Sure.” He shrugs, which is rather blasé of him.

You don’t care?” Great, I’m even more crushed than before. I can literally feel myself wilting.

Sure I care. In fact, I’m thinking that I shouldn’t have repositioned the bathroom counter height higher, when I framed out that mirror last week. I’m guessing height’s definitely going to be issue with you now that you are, ah,” he made an air circle in front of me, “shrinking and all.”

Blink, blink. “Repositioned the…?”

Yeah. And now that I think about it? Did I mention that I readjusted your treadmill so when you go to incline twelve you won’t be decapitated by the ceiling fan?”

*Insert a sigh of relief here, quickly followed by my eyes narrowing*

Fricking guy!

So there you have it. I’m not only an author who stresses out about new releases, but I’m a wife who suffers in silence when her jerk of a husband pulls this kind of sh*t on her. Meh, it does make for great writing material.

Okay, let me set this scene. This is Neil and Charlotte a.k.a Charlie’s story. Vanilla feminist Charlie has swapped places with her kink loving bratty identical twin sister for a few days and unbeknownst to either of them, Master Neil Cannon has decided to tackle her sister over some of her previously naughty behavior. Now Charlie’s stuck pretending to be cool with this powerful Dom’s brand of punishment…and the games he likes to play. Heheheh.


Provoked by Riley Murphy


The light’s green.”

Her demure tone, unlike when she was talking with Max earlier, was totally sincere now. Why? Who was she? The sub who needed help, or the self-possessed woman he wanted to dominate?

He gave a curt nod toward her buckled seatbelt. “I’m glad you don’t mind wearing restraints.”

What? Why would you make a comment like that?”

Because it’s going to be a bumpy ride.”

He’d let her glean from that what she would, being that the street—his street—beyond the security gate he’d just passed through had most recently been paved. There wasn’t a pothole, a bump, or a speck to be found.

This is it.” After the garage door was fully open he pulled his Mercedes in and then cut the engine.

Nice mansion. Do you live here all by yourself?”

He reached over and placed his hand over hers on the door handle. “Don’t.”

I was only going to let myself out.”

Taking note of her genuine confusion, he sighed and then straightened back into his seat. “Not when you’re with me. I get the door. What kind of men have you been spending time with?”

Chivalry may be dead to some degree in the vanilla world, but in his it was not only alive, but thriving.

I don’t think that’s any of your business.”

He met her steady gaze. “And I don’t think that was a very polite response. Would you like to try again?”

Not particularly.”

All right.” Neil wasn’t going to sit and argue in the car. There were plenty of better places in the house to squabble with her. He could think of one room that would be perfect to test the brass on the balls she was packing. “We’ll let that response stand as rude.”

He did her a favor and exited before she could answer him. Unfortunately, the second he opened her door and helped her out, she replied, “That wasn’t rude. Rude would have been me telling you to mind your own goddamn business.”

When she uttered that last word she executed a defiant toss of her head that sent glossy ginger curls swaying behind her. He didn’t have time to admire the sensual effect. He was too busy keeping his molars from flattening each other in a grind.

So, you know, that’s why I didn’t say it,” she rushed out. Almost as if she’d realized her mistake and was attempting to correct it. Regrettably, for her, this was not an easy fix.

He indicated to the passenger seat with one hand while holding the door open with the other. “Get back in the car.”


She knew why. The answer was written all over her guilty face. This behavior was beyond bratty sub. It wasn’t even the signs of a hostile switch. He’d given that idea some thought. No, the fact of the matter was, she was different, and he was digging the difference too much. He wanted to commit himself to the challenge she presented, but he wasn’t sure she was ready for his unique methods. “I think you made the wrong choice back at the club. You don’t want to be here.”

Her eyes widened in panic. “I do. I swear I do.”

Odd, but he believed her. “Why?”

You said it yourself. I have a big mouth. That’s my problem.”

The truth twisted around a lie. Maybe not a lie, but a declaration she didn’t believe. “If you think your mouth is the only reason you’re here, you’d be wrong.”


There was just no figuring her out. How could she be confused after what she’d pulled on his vanilla guys? “I’m going to give you one more chance to go, before you commit to stay. And by stay I mean remain in my keeping, train under my guidance, and adhere to my methods, rules and rituals.”

What about desires?”

Her whisper was quiet and direct. Being that she’d attached no bitchy attitude to it he answered her. “If you think I’m lusting after you, think again. I want to know what you’ve got between your ears, before I explore what’s between your legs.”

Him slamming the door almost drowned out her gasp. Almost, but not quite. “How dare you.”

This was the second time she’d thrown out that inane phrase. “You see that door?” He pointed towards the entrance to the house. “Once we go inside, that is all I’m going to be doing. Punishing you. Daring you. Pushing you. So right now, I want you to think long and hard about all the possibilities before you fully commit to me. Are you a submissive?”

Sure. Yeah. Of course. I most definitely am a…a…”

Submissive?” he offered when she couldn’t spit it out. What the hell was wrong with her? The expression on her face suggested she was hiding something.

Yes, I am, and I’m ready to get this… I mean, I’m ready to go inside.”

Not so fast there, tiger.” He took hold of her arm when she tried to brush past, and waited for her to look up at him. “I want you to know that whatever you’re hiding won’t be a secret too much longer. I don’t like secrets. They have a tendency to muddy the waters in a power exchange. Instead I like to deal in honesty. I like my subs to know what they can expect from me and what I expect from them in return.”

Is that what I am? Your sub?”

He should have said a sub. Damn. If he backtracked now he’d be setting a bad precedent. “Yes. The second you walk through that door you’re mine until the lesson is over.”

She searched his eyes and he knew what she was looking for. Weakness. Too bad she’d find none. “Okay, what can I expect? That you’re going to school me about my bad behavior with your service guys?”

No, for that you’re going to be punished.” It was his turn to search her eyes. They were tilted up at the corners, cat-like. Nice. That’s why he’d dubbed her tiger. They were also a clear hazel color. A mix of pale blue and deep greens that changed shades depending on her mood. Suddenly they brightened and he knew what that meant. More of her sarcasm.

I wonder what kind of card Hallmark has for this occasion.”

He tried his best not to grin as he didn’t want to encourage her, and led her to the door. “I’d advise them to go with a Scrooge type theme.”

Christmas? But it’s only September. Shouldn’t it be a fall theme?” She made a noise that reminded him of haha before she said, “As in a sub falls across the guy’s lap and gets spanked.”

His hand was on the doorknob, he turned the handle but stopped midway when those words sunk in. “The. Guy?”

She nodded which made him frown.

It was as if she had no idea about protocol or respect. “Are you sure your name is Catherine Wood?”


Thanks for stopping by! Oh, and if you leave a comment here your name gets entered into a couple of great giveaways I’ve got going on. I’m going to be drawing one on Monday. It’s a chance for a 25.00 Amazon gift card and a signed paperback of Provoked. The other drawing has a whole pile of things, with more being added up until the day I do the drawing. To play it’s really easy. Just leave a comment here and your name will be added to the hat before I pull the winners. If you want to see what’s already been added and up for grabs in the one I’m still building on. Here’s the link. Good luck!


Riley MurphyRiley Murphy writes sexy, humorous and emotional romance, happy ending guaranteed. An optimist, she believes life is awesome, people are complicated, but in a good way, and we should never stop learning. Riley currently resides in Florida with her gorgeous husband. She has two wonderful kids and one very bossy English Bull terrier she has dubbed ‘The divine One’. When Riley’s not working she enjoys reading, oil painting and getting to the Sunday crossword puzzle before anyone else does, so she can fill-in all the easy answers first. If Riley wasn’t a writer she’d be an international spy with top-level security so she could have a peek at Area 51 and decide for herself if those green guys are for real. Failing that she’d probably go with chicken sexer. Riley loves to hear from readers. Swing by and say hello to her on her website at or connect with her on twitter @Riley__murphy where she’s always sharing her deep-dark secrets.


Here’s where you can find it.


B & N:

And here’s where you can watch it. This book trailer is narrated by the talented Kai Kennicott and has originally scored music by super “voice” sexy Wen Ross.

One Comment

  1. Wow! This one sounds really good! Thanks for the new to me author, Nikki! Adding it to my list right now!

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