Category Archives: Guest Post

SHHM Guest Danni Rose: “Angel Food Cake to Tortillas”

We are having so much fun with guest posts for Smithsonian Hispanic Heritage Month we decided to continue with one more! We have another new to ALBTALBS author, and we couldn’t be more excited! It’s always fun to read new authors, and here is a chance to get to know debut author Danni Rose a little better! 

Angel Food Cake to Tortillas

My mother is an excellent cook, me—not so much. My lack of skill was apparent the first time I made a cake. Using a box cake mix, I planned to make the perfect cake. I mixed the batter, put the cake in the oven, and waited anxiously for it to be done. Imagine my disappointment when, instead of a cake, I pulled out an angel food Frisbee. Continue reading

SHHM Guest Andie J. Christopher: “White, Black, and Puerto Rican All Over

Today we welcome author Andie J. Christopher to ALBTALBS! Andie joins us with a guest post for Smithsonian Hispanic Heritage Month, and we are thrilled to have her! We also hope you are enjoying our SHHM guest posts as much as we have. Please give Andie a warm ALBTALBS welcome!

White, Black, and Puerto Rican All Over

My mom is white. Specifically, her ancestors were Irish, French-Canadian, and German/Polish. My father was black, French, and Puerto Rican, although he identified simply as black. My paternal grandmother was a jazz singer who fluttered around the margins of fame for about sixty years. She smoked like a chimney, drank like a fish, married about as many times as Elizabeth Taylor, and had a wolfish laugh I’ll never forget. She also had an affair with a Puerto Rican musician during the 1950’s, which produced my father. My father never knew his father and grew up as the cherished child in a matriarchal household. (I think my grandmother would have enjoyed being referred to as a “matriarch.”) Continue reading

SHHM Guest: Mia Sosa on “Looking Latina” (Or not!)

Welcome to another Smithsonian Hispanic Heritage Month post! Can you believe it’s almost the end of September already? Today we welcome to ALBTALBS author Mia Sosa. Mia also has a book out this month (Acting on Impulse) so be sure to check that out as well.

“You don’t look Latina.”

As I was trying to brainstorm what to write about in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, I came across a tweet from Zoraida Córdova that resonated with me. For context, here’s the tweet: Continue reading

Guest Post: On Fat Heroines (in Romance) by N.R. Lines

Hi friends! So this post was inspired by just an offhand comment about how fat heroines are [rarely] actually fat in romance, or there’s something ridiculous about them – e.g. the “fat heroine” has visible ribs the hero counts or runs his fingers over. Anyway, I then asked N.R. in the spring if she wanted to write a post, this was sent to me back in June, but I’m basically awful and had to put this off because scheduling and then time got away with me, so if anything is off, this is my fault. And also, thank you N.R. for your patience! I really hope you all take the time to read this post. <3

I’d also like to note that all covers shown here are recommended romances, regardless of placement in the post. I just like pictures, ok? 😉 

On Fat Heroines (in Romance) 
By N.R. Lines

We have a problem in the romance genre. It’s been a problem for as long as I’ve been reading romance back in1981, and likely much longer than that. It’s a problem that impacts many women , whether they know it or not. And few people seem to be talking about it. The problem: Romancelandia lacks fat heroines. Or at least fat heroines who are written well.

I have divided the fat heroines I’ve seen in romance novels into the following categories:

  • The Fake Fat Heroine
  • The Confident Curvy Girl
  • The Full Figured Fat Heroine

There are three types of Fake Fat Heroines. First is the heroine who the author is authentically trying to write as fat, but uses descriptors that could never apply to a fat heroine. For example, a truly fat, or even curvy girl will never be described as having jutting hipbones. A partner would never loving run their hands down the fat heroine’s ribs and feel the outline of her rib bones. These Fake Fat Heroines make me shake my head and laugh at the absurdity of it all. To fix this we need to be better at describing a fat heroine in a manner that is both realistic and affirming. We can do this, I know we can!

The second type of Fake Fat Heroine is the heroine who describes herself as fat because she is insecure about an aspect of her body. Fat or slender, we’ve all been there. But what if we stopped doing that? What if instead of making your heroine feel and see fat when she thinks about those insecurities we give her an insecurity that she overcomes. Pick one thing about herself, not her entire body. I get it, fat is that ubiquitous descriptor that is used to describe a woman who doesn’t feel right about her body. I’m in no way minimizing the issues we have as women, but as romance writers, perhaps we can do better and can find other ways to describe these insecurities. And we can write the stories where these insecurities are overcome in positive ways that don’t inadvertently put us fat girls down.

The final type of Fake Fat Heroine is more damaging. This is the heroine an author presents as a woman who believes she is fat, who sees a big girl when she looks in the mirror, but as we get into the story we come to realize the heroine isn’t a plus sized gal at all. Maybe the heroine has been called fat by family and friends because she’s a size eight instead of a size two. Maybe she was fat at a different point in her life, but has been at a lower weight for some time and is suffering from body dysmorphia. Maybe she is a trans woman who has some dissonance between how she feels in her skin and what she sees in the mirror. All we get from the heroine’s inner dialogue, and maybe dialogue with her evil family and friends, is that she is fat. Continue reading

Birthday Bash Guest: Vivian Arend

Hi friends! We’ve got Vivian Arend with us today, and instead of it being her birthday, it’s mine! … Well, in a few days. But in ALBTALBS world we all know time is fluid. (*coughs* definitely it has nothing to do with my own scheduling issues or needs… >.>) Anyway, come join us! She’s even got all the giveaway stuff covered, so just check it out – and COMMENT. BE LOUD. And remember, there are tons of other giveaways going on too! Remember to check them out, comment, and win!

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I’m so excited to help Limecello celebrate her birthday. *blows noise makers*

I’m Vivian Arend, New York Times Bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. I love writing about sexy cowboys and other blue collar heroes, as well as wolf and bear shifters searching for their fated mates.

On July 18th, I’ll be releasing the final book in my popular Six Pack Ranch series, all about the Coleman family in Alberta, Canada. Rocky Mountain Home features Jesse Coleman, one of the younger brothers of the Six Pack Ranch Coleman boys. Readers of the series have been waiting for Jesse’s story since he first appeared in Rocky Mountain Heat. (Which is currently free for kindle!) Continue reading

[Smithsonian Heritage] Pride Month Guest: Jason T. Gaffney (Plus Ed Gaffney & Suzanne Brockmann) AND a Giveaway!

Y’all!!! I know, that post title is a mouthful is it not?! But how fun and exciting, right? 😀 Seriously I hope you’ve checked out the other Pride Month posts here at ALBTALBS (all tagged), but I’m really excited about this new post, and how it’s delightful and different from what we’ve been seeing. (Diversity in all things! <3) 😀 I hope you’ll give a warm welcome to Jason T. Gaffney, Ed Gaffney, and Suzanne Brockmann who yes, are all first time guests! Thank you all for joining us! 

Classic Category Romance Tropes

Fixing FrankSuz Brockmann interviews Jason T. Gaffney and Ed Gaffney, authors of Fixing Frank, California Comedy series book #3, from Suzanne Brockmann Presents

Suz: So far, in your California Comedy series, you’ve used the “marriage of convenience” trope in Fixing Frank, where frenemies pretend to be engaged while contestants in a reality web series; the “friends to lovers” trope in A Match for Mike, where childhood friends meet again after a long-ago estrangement—and sparks fly; and the “Cinderella make-over” trope in Creating Clark, where a nerdy coffeeshop owner asks a hot actor friend to help him catch the eye of a another man. What do you think is the appeal of these tried and true romance tropes? Continue reading

SAPAHM Guest: Lisa on The Importance of Diverse Representation in Media

Hi everyone! Yes, APAHM is still going on, and today we welcome back Lisa!! I think this is a really interesting topic, and I hope you will too. 🙂 Without further ado… 

The Importance of Diverse Representation in Media

First of all, I want to thank Limecello for giving me the opportunity to guest blog and commemorate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month! I decided to talk about my favorite Disney movie, and Asian representation in media more generally.

The year was 1998. The new Disney movie Mulan had just come out. To say I was beyond excited would be an understatement. For the first time, there was a movie coming out that represented my culture, people with faces that looked like me. (Yes, The Joy Luck Club came out five years prior, but I was too young then, and hadn’t read the book yet). When I finally saw the movie, it lived up to my expectations, and more. Continue reading