Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Applying 'The Secret' to My Life

I've been reading the book, The Secret, this week and have to admit it's fascinating me. Basically, it talks about the Law of Attraction and how what we think is attracted to us. For example, if you keep thinking [which I have done in the past], I am overweight, then that is what you are going to attract -- those extra pounds. If, on the other hand, your thoughts are towards being happy and healthy, then you will attract a positive healthy lifestyle and figure.

Now I got to wondering if this would work for me, then I realised it already has worked for me in some areas without me even being aware of it.

In 1996, I attended an open day at the local college and although I was seeking a counselling course, I ended up side tracked and getting signed up for the diploma in childhood studies instead. I ended up getting great marks for my assignments, but I wasn't enjoying it. I became such a perfectionist, redoing and doing assignments that I had no time left for myself. I had burnt myself out and left after a year.

I was a little aimless for a couple of years, until I attended a workshop held by Gael Lindenfield, author of, The Positive Woman. Gael spoke about the importance of goal setting, not just for years in the future, but to set weekly, monthly and yearly goals as well. I came out of the meeting truly inspired. I opened a notepad and wrote the three things I most desired:

* To have a new friend

* To have a new hobby

* To train as a counsellor

The new friend came into my life very quickly. She was interested in tracing her family tree and we both went to meeting together and attended research offices. It opened a whole, new world for me. So I had the new friend and a new hobby.


In 1998, I decided that I would train to become a counsellor and not get side tracked like I had at the local college! I attended an induction meeting in the town and I met a woman who told me she wanted to train as a counsellor because she worked for a cancer charity. At that particular time I hadn't even heard of the charity, but I remember thinking, I'd love to work there!

I was selected for an interview to get on the counselling course, but unfortunately broke my big toe and ended up in a plaster cast. After that, everything went wrong. I couldn't attend as it was taking place at the top of a large flight of steep stairs. Then I was told I would be interviewed over the telephone, but no one rang me. So I left it at that, thinking I was never meant to become a counsellor.

Fast forward, a year. I met the same lady at a Woman's Day at my local health centre. She told me she had taken the course and passed and asked what had happened to me. When I explained she told me that they were interviewing again. So I applied and got accepted.

I ended up achieving The Intermediate Certificate in Counselling followed by The Diploma in Counselling.

I was interviewed by a mental health charity and got a job, coincidentally working at the cancer centre only seeing mental health clients. The mental health charity had taken over the cancer charity to keep it running.

Anyhow, to cut a long story short, both charities parted ways and I ended up being offered a position as a counsellor at the cancer charity where I still work today, some three years on. The very cancer centre I had fancied working at when I spoke to that lady back in 1998!

Keep posted for how 'The Secret' applied to my writing life without me realising it as well!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Nice Review

I got a nice review for A Taste of Honey from ecataromance although the reviewer makes it sound as if Fran's job as a honey trapper is to sleep with men. It's not. She tests out their fidelity by seeing if they will chat her up or not. The family restaurant is called, The Vine Tree, not The Tree Vines as it says in the review. Apart from those minor quibbles the rest is great:

In order to raise some money to invest in the family business, Fran Santini works two jobs. The first is as a waitress in the family restaurant, with two brothers, Anthony and Mario. Her second job is as a honey trapper, an available woman that tries to get into a specific man's pants to prove that he cheats on his wife. However, when she messes up her latest case, mistaking the man she is suppose to honey trap with a total stranger, she is certain she will have to let her second job go. She is just not meant to be a honey trapper.

Travis O'Connell is a desperate man. He needs a job rather badly because he would like to go back to see his mom in Ireland and he would also like to buy a house where his dog Buster will be able to run as he wants. But to do so, he has to get the job in the family owned business where he has a job interview. On his way there, he gets hit on by a crazy woman, with beautiful legs, who thinks he is somebody else.

Fast forward a little bit. Imagine Travis’s surprise when, after being hired at The Tree Vines, he realizes that the boss's daughter is… the woman he thinks is a prostitute!

There are many subplots to A Taste of Honey which makes this story funny and entertaining! The secondary characters are also interesting and amusing. Ms Rees has written a witty, light and pleasurable read!

Reviewer Anne Chaput
Posted April 15, 2007

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

What's your favourite romance movie?

For me, it has to be, without a question of a doubt, Brief Encounter. This movie isn’t even a modern one. It was released in 1945 and directed by David Lean, starring fine English actors, Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard.

Laura Jessen, a married woman, takes a trip into Milford every Thursday. She comes from a middle-class background and on this particular day, shops then goes to the movies. It appears to be her weekly treat.

One Thursday, as she is waiting for her train [it was steam back then of course], a piece of grit blows into her eye and she encounters the debonair doctor, Alec Harvey, who kindly removes it for her.

She thinks no more of their encounter, but literally bumps into him again on one of her trips when he shares her table at a restaurant. They end up going to the cinema together and their romance flourishes.

She knows this is wrong and both of them are torn.

It’s not a happy ending for either of them really, but on the other hand, they end up doing the right thing for the sake of their respective families.

I love this movie as it’s so atmospheric. The film was shot during the winter months when the days were short and the nights were long. Images like the couple’s shadow [as they are in a passionate clinch] reflected on the brick walls of the underground tunnels leading to the station and the steam from the trains provides a setting that becomes a character in the movie itself.

The viewer can practically sense the moment Laura falls for Alec when they are chatting at the station cafe about his research work. The way she searches his face with her eyes.

There is no sex in this film, although it almost happens when he takes her back to his friend’s apartment, but they are disturbed. It is then, Laura becomes aware of the sordiness, not of their love, but of the postion they are both in sneaking around.

I never get fed up of this film, I’ve watched it many times and still see something new in it each time.

View movie trailer here:


View clip from Brief Encounter here [spoiler warning — contains end of film] :


So, the question I’m asking is, what’s your favourite romance movie and why?

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

New cover art for: It Happened One Summer

Here's my new cover art for It Happened One Summer which is due for release by The Wild Rose Press this summer.

I love it!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

A Taste of Honey is out today!

**Purchase book here**

My romantic comedy, A Taste of Honey, is released by Samhain Publishing today. You can purchase it in e-book format here:

It will be released as a paperback next February and will be available from Borders/Waldenbooks and Amazon online.

An excerpt from

A Taste of Honey

Copyright © 2007 Lynette Rees

All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication

The man looked up. The first thing she noticed was his eyes; they were so soulful, fringed with heavy, dark lashes. She found it hard to take her own off them. They were the kind of green you could lose yourself in. For a moment, she forgot why she was here. Her mouth dry, she said, “Er, do you mind if I sit?”

He said nothing, just shook his head, indicating she could sit down if she wanted. Boy, she had a feeling this was going to be hard work.

Out of his pocket, he pulled a battered tin and some cigarette papers. Taking some tobacco, he deftly placed it in the middle of one of the papers and made a roll-up. She watched as he ran the tip of the paper across his tongue and sealed the cigarette. Now was her chance. She leaned forward, so he would get a flash of her ample cleavage, and used her huskiest voice, the one she used for jobs like this.

“Do you mind?” She placed one of her own cigarettes between her lipstick-painted lips. She didn’t normally smoke, but knew it looked seductive and, after all, she had been forewarned he was a smoker.

“Mind what?” he replied, in what sounded like an Irish brogue.

“I was hoping you would give me a light.”

“Oh.” He took a match from the box and struck it. She leaned even closer as the flame touched the tip of the cigarette. “You have to inhale at the same time.” The corner of his lips curved upwards into a half smile. She felt foolish, but she was right about one thing—he was Irish. “Now, you’re not really a smoker, are you?”

“I am,” she replied indignantly and inhaled deeply to prove she was, prompting a coughing fit. If ever Francine felt like the ground should swallow her up, it was right at this very moment.

“Here.” The man handed Fran her drink. She observed he had a tattoo of a shamrock on the back of his forearm. As she took the glass from his outstretched hand, his fingers brushed against hers. A tingly feeling danced over the surface of her skin, taking her by surprise. This wasn’t going to be easy. He didn’t seem the type of person she thought he was. But his wife’s description had been accurate: collar-length, dark brown hair, green eyes, goatee beard, smoker. But no mention of a tattoo. How strange.

Now what? “Come on, you’ve got lucky.” She licked her lips. If she could just get him outside in a compromising situation, a photographer awaited to snap a picture of them together.

“I beg your pardon?”

“I thought you might like to come home with me for a night cap?”

“I don’t usually go off with strange women, darling!” His eyes widened and he drained his pint, then slammed it down on the table.

So that was his game, was it? He had probably guessed his wife had someone following him.

Fran tried to keep her voice controlled. “Isn’t that what lecherous men like you want? A mistress, while your poor wife stays at home looking after the children?”

He gave her a hard stare, as if she had a screw loose. “I don’t know what you’ve been drinking, but I reckon you should make that your last one. I ain’t the marrying kind. And I certainly don’t go around picking up strange women with all the morals of an alley cat.”

Well, he would say that wouldn’t he? If he suspected something.

He got up out of his seat and grabbed his combat jacket from the back of the chair. Shaking his head and muttering under his breath, he pushed past her.

Immediately, Fran was on her feet. “You no-good, two-timing son of a bitch!” The pub chatter ceased and everything went deadly quiet. She hadn’t realised how far her voice would carry. It felt as if time had stopped and all the pub’s regulars were on freeze frame. This was so not how to do her job. It was unethical, but she just couldn’t help herself. The man was arrogance itself.

She watched as his shoulders tensed up. The back of his neck appeared to shrink down into his shoulders. Slowly, he turned.

People were giving him the evil eye and whispering. Good. What did she care if everyone in the pub knew about him?

The man took a deep breath. “Lady, I have never seen you before in my life and, if I ever see you again, it will be too soon.” Then he pushed his way through the crowd that parted like the Red Sea to allow him to pass.

Fran followed close after him. Once on the street, she gave a thumbs-up sign to the photographer slouched against the wall across the road, to indicate he should follow them. One thing was for sure, the Irish bloke could walk at a hell of pace. For someone who smoked, he seemed ultra fit. Fran’s high-heeled shoes pinched her feet and one of her heels got wedged in a crack in the pavement.

“Stop!” she bellowed at the top of her lungs. “I want a word with you.”

The man paused and turned to face her, then burst out laughing as she toppled over and lay spread-eagled on the pavement. Any dignity she had now disappeared. Her dress hitched up around her thighs and her stocking tops were on full view. Fran felt her face heat up.

When his laughter ceased, he ran over and helped her to her feet.

“I can manage, thank you.” She brushed the dirt from her new dress. She had torn it and broken a fingernail into the bargain.

He steadied her, taking no notice of her protests to keep away. Aware of his closeness, she shivered. Brought back to reality, she heard a click behind them. Oh no, she had forgotten—the photographer.

“What the…?” The man furrowed his brow, his lips tightening. “I don’t know what your game is, little lady, but you’d better keep away from me before I do something I might regret.” He quickly walked away.

“Yeah, run away,” Fran shouted after him. “That’s what men like you do. You’re all the same!” She remembered the photographer. “Did you get that?”

“Yep. I fired off a few shots from across the road, but the best one was when he steadied you after you had fallen.” The photographer frowned. “Hey, I’m not too happy about setting this chap up.”

“You’ve done it before, Ralph. Why the pang of conscience?”

“Something doesn’t feel right. Are you sure you had the right bloke?”

“Let me tell you, Ralph, I’ve been in this game for some time now and I know we got the right man.”

* * *

Camille Johnson fingered the large black and white prints and handed them back to Francine. “It’s not him.”

Fran’s stomach flipped over. “Are you sure? Take another look…”

“I think I’d recognise my own husband. I’ve never seen that man before in my life.”

“But I was so sure after the description you gave me. You said where he would be drinking and that he had a goatee beard.”

Mrs. Johnson raised her eyebrows and threw her shoulders back, now towering over Fran. “I said nothing of the sort.”

“Yes, you did. You said, ‘collar-length brown hair, green eyes and goatee beard’.”

Mrs. Johnson looked up at the ceiling in desperation. “I said, ‘collar-length brown hair, green eyes and that he would go to bed’. I meant he would go to bed with the woman in question. I can assure you that my husband does not have a goatee beard!” She flared her nostrils in disgust.

Fran looked at the floor. “Oh! Sorry. It’s just that you don’t see many men with goatee beards these days, so I just assumed.”

“Never assume, dear. It just makes an ass out of you and me. I shall expect a refund, of course.”

Fran swallowed. Now she would have to explain to her boss why she’d failed on this particular assignment. She had been so sure, too. Never mind, she was hardly likely to see the man again, was she? It was his local and she never drank there. She also made it a rule not to return to a pub where she had set up a honey trap. This one she would just have to chalk up to experience.