Great Idea? Or No Idea? + Giveaway!

by Dani Collins, author of An Heir To Bind Them

9780373132546Oh, the irony. I’ve committed to several guest blogs this summer because I have five books out—yes, five. Two Presents, two erotic romances being released as a set from HarlequinE and a novella with The Chatsfield series.

You’d think merely putting the books out would be enough, but no, I’m a keener and I like to shake people awake and show off each of my titles. Have you seen this one? How about this one? I’m pretty excited.

I do try to show some organization skills, however. The worst thing I could do is forget that I have a post due and leave a blog host hanging. So I try to set up all my files well ahead of time and give myself a headline and a few notes about what I can write about. This comes in handy if I wind up pressed for time and don’t know what to write about.

Which you’d think was the problem here, but no. I gave myself that headline, ‘Great idea? Or no idea?’ thinking it had promise, but when I opened up this file, I thought, What was I thinking? I had no idea where I thought I could go with this one.

But it’s coming back to me. I’m remembering that I had a great idea about two years ago where I could set a book on a cruise ship and it could be taken over by pirates. I could then spin several stories off that one event, maybe even have a secret baby story three years later. It was brilliant by my standards, but I didn’t know how to pull it off so that particular great idea turned into no idea.

Until I came to write my current release, An Heir To Bind Them. I knew I wanted my hero, Theo, to wind up with temporary care of his niece and nephew. (Note: these are the children of Nic & Rowan from No Longer Forbidden? and Adara & Gideon from More Than A Convenient Marriage?) The role of babysitter sends Theo into a tailspin aimed directly at the only woman he trusts enough to help him: Jaya.

This was a great idea until I looked up where most ships are being taken over by pirates. How is he buzzing from the Arabian Sea to safe harbor in his personal helicopter?

Being an author of fiction, I didn’t let little things like facts get in my way. I plunked the ship into the Med. If readers are shocked to hear it was boarded by unfriendlies there, well, Jaya is equally incredulous. As it turns out, it was merely an African prince trying to find his runaway bride. (Set up for a future book? Of course! Great idea? I have no idea.)

Maybe this headline ties into my story after all, since Theo thought sleeping with Jaya eighteen months ago was a great idea, but now she’s revealed they have a son. He has no idea how he’ll proceed. He’s locked down with two other babies needing care so he can’t pull his usual cut and run act. He has to face her, his failure to return her calls, and all that it means to be a father. It’s not easy for a man as emotionally reserved as he is.

As for Jaya, I thought it would be a great idea to make her Indian then I realized I had no idea how to pull it off. (I’ve since had a lovely fan letter from an Indo-Canadian reader who assured me I did fine.)

web-14Finally, I thought writing the consummation of said son into the opening of the book would be a great idea. Um, I didn’t really think ahead to the #SampleSunday excerpts I post on my blog in the weeks running up to my book launches. You might want to fetch a glass of ice water before you head over there to peruse.

If you’re seeing a pattern here, so am I. I am the first to pick up a great idea and run with it, then ask from halfway down the field, “Where are we going with this again?”

How about you? Do you find yourself charging into things without really knowing where you’ll end up? I’d love to draw from your comments for a signed print copy of An Heir To Bind Them.

Giveaway! Answer the above question for a chance to win a signed copy of An Heir to Bind Them. Contest will close June 15th at 11:59 pm, and winner will be chosen by random draw and announced on June 16th. Open to residents of US and Canada, excluding Quebec. For full giveaway rules, click here.

Update This contest is now closed.

About An Heir to Bind Them:

Off the boss’s payroll…and into his bed

Jaya. Her name reverberates around Theo Makricosta’s head in time to the whirring blades of his private helicopter. He must find her; only Jaya can help with the care of his infant niece and nephew…. It’s not because he hasn’t stopped thinking about the single night of mind-blowing passion he shared with the exotic beauty.

Jaya Powers couldn’t refuse her gorgeous millionaire Greek boss when she worked for him, and she can’t refuse him now! Only this time she has a secret. Their night together had consequences that will change Theo’s perfectly ordered existence forever!



“There’s not a woman in the world with enough training to fix me. Don’t try.” Another warning, his tone a little cooler.

She shook her head. This was about fixing herself, not him. “I just keep thinking that if I leave without kissing you, I’ll always wonder what it would have been like.”

That sounded too ingenuous, too needy, but his quietly loaded, “Yeah,” seemed to put them on the same page, which was remarkable. He stared at her mouth and hot tingles made her lips feel plump. She tried to lick the sensation away.

His breath rushed out in a ragged exhale. He loomed closer, so tall and broad, blocking out her vision, nearly overwhelming her. But when his fingers lightly caressed her jaw and his mouth came down, she was paralyzed with anticipation.

There’d been a few kisses in her life, none very memorable, but when his mouth settled on hers, unhurried and hot, she knew she’d remember this for the rest of her life.

The smooth texture of his lips sealed to hers. He didn’t force her mouth open. She softened and welcomed his confident possession, weakening despite the nervous flutters accosting her. He rocked the fit, deepening the kiss so she opened her mouth wider, bathed in delicious waves of heat. Their lips dampened and slid erotically. His tongue was almost there, then not, then—

He licked into her mouth and she moaned, lashed with exquisite delight. This was the kind of kiss she’d only read about and now she knew there was a reason they called it a soul kiss. Her hand went to his shoulder for balance. She lifted on her toes, wanting more pressure, more of him settling into her inner being.

With a groan he slid his arm around her and pulled her tight against him, softly crushing her mouth while digging his fingers into her bound hair. It was good, so good. She reached her arms around his neck, loving how it felt to be kissed and held so tightly against his hard chest and—

He was hard everywhere.

Like hitting a wall, she pushed back, perturbed by how intensely she had been responding and the dicey situation she’d put herself in.

He didn’t let her go right away, kind of steadied her first while staggering one step himself, then he ran a hand through his hair and swore under his breath. “Hellfire, Jaya. I suspected it’d be good, but I didn’t know it’d be that good. Are you sure you don’t want to spend the night?”



Dani’s first Harlequin Presents, Proof Of Their Sin, recently won the Reviewer’s Choice by Romantic Times Book Reviews for Best First In Series. This summer she turns up the heat with two sexy Harlequin Presents, two erotic romances from HarlequinE, and a bondage theme in her novella with The Chatsfield series. Dani is celebrating all these super-hot books and hidden identity stories with her  Masked Desires Contest. Enter for a chance to express your secret desires from behind a masquerade mask.

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Comments ( 24 )
  1. Laney4
    June 2, 2014 at 7:10 am

    The only example I can think of to reinforce my answer of, “No, I don’t usually find myself charging into things without really knowing where I’ll end up,” would be regarding my wedding proposal. I was 21; he was 31. We knew of each other through mutual friends for over a year (while I was dating someone else). I broke up with my old boyfriend in August and started dating my now-husband on Labour Day weekend (early Sept.). On Christmas Day, he proposed in front of my family. When I was stunned because it was WAY too soon for me, my mother answered for me and said, “Yes, she will,” to which I finally found my dropped mouth and said I’d think about it before replying. Two days later, I obviously said yes, but only after writing out a list of why I wanted to marry, why I wanted to marry him, why I didn’t want to marry, and why I didn’t want to marry him. Even though the reasons to say no went right down the binder page and the reasons to say yes were one-quarter in length, I decided that the quality of the answers mattered more than the quantity. We celebrate our 33nd anniversary next month….

  2. Dani Collins
    June 2, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Oh Laney! I love this story!

    LOL on your mom accepting for you. Congratulations on the upcoming anniversary. You obviously made the right choice 🙂

  3. Rebe
    June 2, 2014 at 11:29 am

    I would say that usually I don’t do that, but occasionally my mouth reacts before my brain does, like the time I told my boss I would take a group of college freshmen to Buenos Aires (great trip, but what was I THINKING?) or when I told a friend I would run a half marathon (now I’ve run 4, but still… yikes).

  4. Dani Collins
    June 2, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    Hi Rebe,

    I once read and interview with (I think it was) Tina Fey. She said she always said, ‘Yes’ to an offer then worked out the details later. It always seems like a great idea until you wind up in S.America with a group of college freshmen, lol! And when it comes to running for more than about six minutes, I’m in awe. Congratulations on all those marathons!

  5. Melanie J
    June 2, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    I don’t necessarily charge into things without knowing the outcome… I usually take calculated risks.

  6. Dani Collins
    June 2, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Hi Melanie,

    My husband is super conscious of outcomes and plans for every possibility. For someone as impulsive as me, it drives me crazy. I suppose it’s been a good balance long term, but sometimes I’m like, Can we just go have fun already? Quit loading the car with stuff we probably won’t need!

  7. bn100
    June 2, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    No, I don’t

  8. Marcy Shuler
    June 2, 2014 at 11:39 pm

    You sound like a fun person to hang out with, Dani. LOL

    But I’m not impulsive. I’m a planner. I do a lot of thinking before I run (or in my case, slow walking) with an idea. 😉

  9. jcp
    June 3, 2014 at 11:36 am

    I’m a planner and a task completer but not the least bit creative.

  10. Dani Collins
    June 3, 2014 at 11:46 am

    Hi bn100! It’s nice to see the same handles pop by on different guest blogs and know that there are readers who enjoy the behind the scenes stuff we write about our books. Thanks for dropping by.

    jcp, task completion is hugely important to getting anything done! I commend you 🙂

    Marcy, ha! thanks! I was put on this planet to learn patience and I can’t believe I haven’t mastered it yet! When will it happen?!?

    Quite honestly, I have learned the value of doing some research and plotting a course, especially from a career standpoint–like, Don’t just start a new book. Finish the current one and plan which one comes next. Sketch out a synopsis for the sake of everyone’s sanity. Stuff like that. 🙂

  11. Kim
    June 5, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    No; I tend to do research before charging in anywhere. While a little spontaneity is good, I tend to think things through before rushing in.

  12. Stephanie
    June 9, 2014 at 6:22 pm

    I usually do find myself in charging into things without really knowing where I’ll end up. But in the end of the day it is better to have done it and learn a lesson from it then always being curious of what the outcome could may have been. “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” -Helen Keller ?

  13. tony parsons
    June 10, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    love 2 win/read this book

  14. Loren Palmer
    June 11, 2014 at 5:24 am

    no not usually I always have a plan

  15. Debbi Wellenstein
    June 11, 2014 at 8:01 am

    When I was interviewing for my latest job, I impulsively blurted out “You need to hire me!” I’ve been working at this job for 10 years! Otherwise, I don’t “charge into” situations much.

  16. ron frampton
    June 12, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    when it comes to money you plan, when it comes to the heart and fun just go where life leads you.

  17. Daniel M
    June 13, 2014 at 9:30 pm

    I try to research whatever before tackling it

  18. Tricha
    June 14, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    No I dont charge into things but I really wish I could let myself have that freedom

  19. Heather Giovannitti
    June 14, 2014 at 11:17 pm

    I would have to say YES, I DO. I think life has a lot to offer us in the way of spontaneity. If you don’t allow things to happen, they won’t. With the exception of not purposely putting yourself in harms way I think everyone should charge forward in their lives at least once, without thinking.

  20. clynsg
    June 15, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    I try to plan things out, but also to be flexible enough and realize that others may not really be interested in what I want to happen!

  21. Jenny moses
    June 15, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    I am not a very impulsive person. My sister in law actually often reminds me that “you don’t like anything about anything”. Apparently, I’m quite skeptical and like to feel sure.

  22. Jane H
    June 15, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Sometimes I wish I would. I am far too conservative for my own good. Perhaps that is why I read these novels, to live life vicariously through the characters.

  23. Buddy Garrett
    June 15, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    Yes I do. I am an impulsive person.

  24. Elissa
    June 16, 2014 at 9:11 am

    This contest is now closed and congratulations to our winner by random draw, Melanie J. Please check our inbox for an email from me. -Elissa from Harlequin