The Power of Blogging

So I was over at yesterday (No, I wasn't obsessing over my sales ranking. I'm over that. Now I only check in one time a day instead of thirty.) and I came across a new reader's review for CHARMED. Spikewriter wrote:

"I picked up this book because I'd been reading the author's blog and found her "voice" in her entries to be one I enjoyed. I was not disappointed by the decision. "Charmed" is a delightful story, not quite romantic comedy, but definitely not your average romantic suspense. Bodyguard Colin Murphy is called in by a friend to watch out for a "princess" who's in danger. He's not expecting a children's storyteller with a princess persona. Ciotta gets things moving from page one and doesn't let up until the end. There's a tremendous amount of humor mixed in with the action that follows, all of which arises naturally from the movement of the plot rather than having the feeling of "insert joke here" that one sometimes encounters when reading romantic comedy. Since Lulu not only works children parties, but is a roving entertainer in an Atlantic City Casino, there's a great deal of material to mine and Ciotta doesn't hesitate to do so. The hero being forced to don the troll suit is great. Trust me."

To read more of the review, go here.

First of all, thank you Spikewriter! This review will have me happy dancing all week. Secondly--behold the power of blogging. What I wrote here inspired at least one person to check out one of my books. That's very exciting! I'm just relieved Spikewriter wasn't disappointed! As to the hero donning a troll suit... I love that scene. That entire scene featured random true-life experiences based on my entertainment background. Except for the mobster part. I've never met a mobster. Oh, wait. yes, I have. But he'd have to kill me if I told you, so let's not go there. Where was I? Ah, the troll suit. Tupilo the Troll was a figment of my imagination, but I really did work with people who had to where full body suits as a casino mascot. I have proof.
Except, darn, blogger won't upload the picture. The file must be too big. I dunno. You're talking to a techno-goober here. If you want to see me in action with Diamond Jim (the now retired mascot of Atlantic City's Tropicana casino) go here and scroll down to Behind the Story.

Follows a short excerpt from the troll scene. Several secondary characters are mentioned, but don't let that trip you up. Just note Lulu is the heroine and Murphy is the hero. The 'Carnevale' is the casino where Lulu and the acting troop perform. The funniest part of the entire scene follows this one. But the graphic language between Murphy and the FBI agent went beyond what I like to post here. My young nieces drop by this blog now and then. At any rate, you'll get the idea...
Except from CHARMED
Jean-Pierre was home safe, sulking. According to Rudy they’d had a tiff, and though Lulu wasn’t happy about that, she was delirious that the cause of his absence wasn’t more dire. Rudy made sure Sofie got to the Carnevale safely, and then took off for a run to Freehold to pick up a queen for Oz. After learning his butt was covered, Rupert was more than happy to play hooky.

Murphy . . . Murphy was more than a trooper. He was an amazing human being. In order to cover for their co-worker he’d donned a full-body fat suit made of heavy duty foam rubber, and the grotesque (in an adorable sort of way) head of a troll. Beady gold eyes, long pointy ears, a bulbous nose, and a too-wide, too-fleshy mouth. Decked out in royal blue and gold seventeenth-century finery, Murphy, or rather, Tupilo the Troll, was mega-ugly-cute. A glitzy, Venetian version of Yoda.

Lulu had cringed when she’d learned that they were scheduled to appear at the local hospital’s pediatric ward. Apparently the president of the Carnevale had been impressed by a recent article, not that she knew anything about it since she never read the newspaper.

Knowing Murphy had a history with disadvantaged children, and knowing it caused him distress, she worried that he’d have one of those meltdowns when faced with all those sick children, many of whom were terminally ill. As it was, Lulu had had to excuse herself three times to pull it together. Tupilo had been the hit of the show, spending equal time with each child, dispersing tickles and hugs.

She still hadn’t quite recovered from the heart-wrenching experience. Two hours later and back in the shuttle, she grabbed Murphy’s oversized, squishy gloved-hand. “That was . . . You were . . .”

“Man, it’s hot in here. The fan system choked twenty-minutes ago.” He lifted the oversized troll head, trying to let in some air.

Lulu knocked away his hand so that the top portion of the costume fell back into place effectively shielding his identity. “I’m sorry. Rupert must’ve forgotten to recharge the battery, but you have to stay covered until we get back to the dressing room. If Peterson finds out about this switch we’re all dead meat.”

“Sounds like a real hard-ass.”

“He’s all right. Just strict.”

“He’s a hard-ass,” the rest of the characters chimed.

The shuttle rolled up to the porte cochere. The cast poured out of the shuttle. Forming a protective circle around Murphy, they hustled toward the hotel lobby. If they didn’t move fast, they’d be stopped by patron after patron wanting to rub Tupilo the Troll for luck.

As bad luck would have it they weren’t thwarted by patrons, but Peterson. “While you’re here, why don’t you go ahead and do a lobby set.”

“He’s got to be kidding,” Murphy mumbled from under his big-eared, beady-eyed head.

“Hard-ass,” Trixie said.

Lulu shushed them. “Let’s just get this over with.” She squeezed Murphy’s plush arm. “Trixie and I have to move over there to juggle and pass clubs. Jingles and Raven will keep an eye on you. If you feel overwhelmed give the ‘Save Me’ signal.”

“Which is?”

She smiled at the sarcasm in his voice. “Just catch one of the other characters’ attention and tug on your right ear. Not your ear, the troll’s ear. Oh, and remember Tupilo doesn’t speak. Just shake hands with people and let them rub you.”

“Rub me where?”

“Wherever,” she teased. Not that he was in any real danger of being violated. His hunky body was safely shielded under layers of foam and fabric. Good-bye, ripped bodyguard. Hello, fat troll. She snickered. “Makes you think twice about breaking rules, huh?”


Gabriele C. said…
Oh, I found dozens of books via blogs, yours among them.

And I only entered the world of blogs a year ago. So not good for my purse. ;-)
Beth Ciotta said…
I've bought books because I liked an authors blog as well, Gabriele. So I hear ya. Off topic, have I told you how much I like your avitar?!
Arianna Hart said…
Oh I just love this book!!! And not just because I helped with it, hahaha. Lulu is one of my favs!
Beth Ciotta said…
Thank, Ari! For your support AND your martial arts input. Your the best!
Roni said…
I think "Charmed" is my favorite of all your books, beth. Which says a lot since I loed all of them!
Beth Ciotta said…
That means a lot, Roni. Thank you!

Popular posts from this blog

I've Moved!

Happy Thanksgiving!

The Reality of it All