May 30, 2012

DARK KISS by Michelle Rowen Blog Tour--Guest Post & Giveaways!

by Michelle Rowen

Hey all! Big thanks to Good Choice Reading for hosting this stop on the DARK KISS Blog Tour! Woo hoo!!

The topic of the day is My Writing Space. Where do I write? How do I write? WHY do I write? MOST of these questions are about to be answered!

Okay, first up:


While, admittedly, I have a perfectly good desk in my home office with a nice chair that helps me not get backaches, while surrounded by bookcases jam-packed with books and a few framed covers, I DO NOT USE IT. No, no. That would be too easy.

I actually do 100% of my writing, revising, and social networking, etcetera, via my crappy beige couch. It’s one of those microfiber things that looked really good when I bought it, but is now worse for wear, frayed, and kind of nasty. Where I sit is embarrassingly flattened by the SHEER AMOUNT OF TIME I SPEND SITTING ON MY BUTT. Which is a lot. From this vantage point I also watch television, talk on the phone, and eat all my meals. What? It’s a small apartment. Don’t judge.

So, this is where I SHOULD be writing:

But this is where I ACTUALLY write:

So, that couch is where I wrote DARK KISS, the first book in my Nightwatchers series with Harlequin Teen. It’s where I chewed my fingernails and pondered what difficulties to put my heroine Samantha through as she discovers a team of angels and demons (including the sexy, yet disturbed Bishop and the snarky, yet conflicted Kraven) sent to save her city from darkness. It’s where I did revisions, line edits, and proofread galleys. It’s where I first saw the AWESOMELY DELICIOUS COVER arrive by email from my editor. And it’s where I sliced opened up the box of author copies of the final book (FYI, one of the most exciting moments in any author’s life).

Enough said.


Some people have lots of exciting computer programs to help them plot or organize or whatever. I don’t. All I use is Microsoft Word. Anything else and I get all confused. I am a plotter, so I do start with an outline for any given book broken down into bullet points for scenes. I could NOT write as much as I do if I didn’t plot. I need a map for any journey. I might not always stick to the map all the time, but I do like to have it as a guide.

While I’m writing I keep a parallel journal, also in Word, where I angst over plot and characters, and I brainstorm different directions I could go. Just because I have the bullet point scene doesn’t mean that it’s enough. I need to figure out GMC: Goal, Motivation, Conflict, which are the building blocks for a scene that hopefully doesn’t suck.

I don’t write every day. I’m a binge writer, which means I like to spend (on the average) six weeks working on the first draft, then another six weeks revising that draft to something that I’m happy with. Lately I’ve been writing 4-5 books a year, so I need to be VERY strict with my personal and professional deadlines.

I have always written on an Mac. Currently it’s a 13” MacBook Pro, which I love. I replace my computer every three years since that’s usually when it conks out, since I’m on the computer up to 15 hours a day.

Normally, I would eat chocolate or devour Doritos to motivate me to get the words on the page. Lately, though, I’ve been on this healthy eating kick. So I eat an apple or drink a bottle of water. It’s not nearly the same. :(

I have two muses. Or, should I say, mewses.

Spike and Sammy don’t help me write. They just sit there staring at me, asking to be fed or wanting their tummies scratched.

I am their slave.


Writing is hard work. No question about it. DARK KISS is actually my twentieth published novel, which makes me sound really old, but, ahem, this is not the case. *shifty eyes* I always thought that writing would get easier the longer you do it. Bzzz. Wrong. But like they say, if it was easy, everybody would be doing it.

The thing is, though – it can be SO MUCH FUN to create characters and make them fall in love, solve mysteries, have adventures, and save the world. It’s seriously as close to magic as we mere mortals can aspire to.

So why do I write? Because I love this kind of magic, creating awesome new worlds, and having fun times through my characters. And if readers can experience those worlds and hopefully enjoy them, too? That’s even more awesome.

Happy reading!

Michelle Rowen

About Michelle Rowen - website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
Michelle Rowen knows a book she’s working on is going well when the characters start talking to her when she’s not writing. She likes to believe this is a sign of a creative mind…and not something to be worried about. While she loves to read, spend time with family and friends, and travel, she also watches way too much reality TV for her own good. A prolific author of novels for both young and not-so-young adults, Michelle lives in Southern Ontario in a sky-high condo with two delightful cat familiars.


I don't do dangerous. Smart, ├╝ber-careful, ordinary Samantha-that's me. But I just couldn't pass up a surprise kiss from my number-one unattainable crush. A kiss that did something to me...something strange. Now I feel hungry all the time, but not for food. It's like part of me is missing-and I don't know if I can get it back
Then there's Bishop. At first I thought he was just a street kid, but the secrets he's keeping are as intense as his unearthly blue eyes. If he's what I think he is, he may be the only one who can help me. But something terrifying is closing in, and the one chance Bishop and I have to stop it means losing everything I ever wanted and embracing the darkness inside me....
When angels and demons must work together, something beyond evil is rising...



Both giveaways are for US/Canada participants only. See the full contest rules here.

The first give-away is a daily one for the chance to win a copy of Dark Kiss! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The second give-away is for a grand prize pack: HarlequinTEEN Goodie Bag!  All entries into the daily give-away count toward the grand prize!!

HarlequinTEEN Goodie Bag:

Dark Kiss by Michelle Rowen (Harlequin TEEN) | Harlequin 60th anniversary bag | Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz (Harlequin TEEN) | Inside by Maria V. Snyder (Harlequin TEEN) | Crave by Melissa Darnell (Harlequin TEEN) | 1 pair of black Harlequin socks | Large ‘Barnaby Moon’ notebook| Small ‘The Dark Page’ notebook


  1. Very fun to read! I'm a slave to my cat too, haha. It's so interesting to read about how Michelle writes. I can look at one of my favorite books of her's now and think, this was made on the couch with Sammy and Spike on a Mac in WordPress. Yeah.. that sounded a little creepy, don't mind me.

    The way that she writes and bullets her story beforehand is really interesting too, since I someday hope to be a writer and author as well! :)

  2. *Microsoft Word not Wordpress, haha ^^;

  3. I love your cats :). Great post - thank you.

  4. Cats have a way of making you feel good!!!
    Great interview and wonderful giveaway!

  5. Thanks for a fun post and giveaway! It was nice to "meet" you :)

  6. And here I thought I was the only slave to my cat.

    Great interview and giveaway!

  7. FYI - The Twitter is one space too many. & giveaway has 2 spaces between the & the next word.

  8. I love cats too. Thanks for the giveaway.

  9. Okay I loved this guest post so much. :) Your cats are adorable, your post was quite funny and I didn't realize you were Canadian! WOOT WOOT! Thanks for the fun giveaway and off to add your book to my wishlist ASAP!

  10. What a cool post =) It's neat to see pics where authors get all the work done. We love you guys for all the cool books. I'd be so lost without books to read. The book sounds fantastic...I added it to my TBR pile.

  11. I do all my computer work on my laptop on my couch. When I use my moms computer at a desk thinking it will be more comfortable I am wrong. It's not that comfy lol My kitties hang out too. Very nice guest post!

  12. I really enjoyed reading Michelle Rowen's guest post. I, like her, have a perfectly good desk in a perfectly good room with a perfectly good chair and computer sitting on it. I don't use it, ever. I sit my butt down on my comfy couch in the living room with the tv and my wonderful dogs (Roxy-lab, Axel-lab, Andy-pit and my baby!). Because even though the desk is perfectly fine, it just isn't the same.
    I am looking forward to reading Dark Kiss. The cover is very tantalizing and the premise sounds like it will be right up my alley. Miss Rowen seems like a very down to earth gal, as am I, so her book and I should get along just fine!

  13. Loved the blog post and the book. I devoured it in one day.

  14. Thank you for taking the time to share a bit of your journey with us today. I wish you well on this tour and much success with what sounds to me like an awesome series :)

  15. Nice post. I tend to do most of my writin in a chair in my living room, so pretty close to her couch. haha. And I only use microsoft word as well. I'm glad even professional writers don't have to be so fancy. :)


  16. Such cute kitties! ;)
    I wish I had an office that looked that nice and neat. Thank you for the chance to read this. :)


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