Good morning, my fuzzy pals.

We have company. Let's gather around the fireplace since it's a
cool day in Georgia. When I learned my friend Annie Rayburn was doing a blog tour, I waved my hand and asked her to visit with us. Well, she came and brought company, my friend from GRW, Carol Burnside and one of the hottest guys I have seen up close and personal. Welcome,Turk. Yum!

This post is Day 4 of my Georgia Romance Indie’s Blog Tour. Thanks for joining me!

Mary whispers to Carol, "Introduce me to that hottie you brought with you, please! "Later," she says.

For those who’ve not met Turk, the picture on the right is of Ingo Rademacher who is my ‘inspiration’ for the character. In this picture, he’s looking rather pensive, the way Turk appeared during our interview.

I brought Turk to my office, thinking we’d have a nice little chat. Obviously, I’d forgotten the depths of the man. My bad. In the end, I think his essence came through better than the version I had in mind. Mindful not to reveal story spoilers, here’s how the scene unfolded...

Annie: Hey, Turk. Good to see you. It’s been awhile.

Turk: Yeah, hi. (looks around) Where’s Zeenie?

Annie: It’s just me and you. An interview.

Turk: (shakes head) Authors. Always asking questions. Gotta know why.

Annie: Well, sure. If we don’t get the why, we don’t portray you correctly. Then you get all persnickety.

Turk: I’m from Texas. We don’t do persnickety.

Annie: (Thinking he’s kinda touchy today.)Whatever. Let’s get this interview done. I’ve got some prepared questions for a blog tour I’m doing to promote Phantoms & Fantasies between now and Halloween. All you have to do is give me honest answers.

Turk: (Gives me a long, measured look.)

Annie: What’s up with you?

Turk: (sighs loud and long) Zeenie and I agreed to watch Coop and Di’s kids so they can get away for awhile. Over Halloween.

Annie: I see. And you’re worried about Zee handling the Trick-or-Treating thing.

Turk: Mostly, she’s great, y’know? And we’re happy. But this one time of year... She gets tense and quiet. You can’t blame her. Not after what she went through, but I can’t make it go away. It drives me crazy. Why’d you have to give her that particular obstacle to overcome?

Annie: It’s not like I chose it. The story chose me. I saw the attack in a dream. A Spook House at Halloween, Zeenie in the dark—.

Turk: Stop. Just...stop.

Annie: Sorry. I know you want to fix it but you can’t. She’ll be okay, you know. Zeenie is strong. Look what she did to make things right with you. (This brings a wistful half-smile to his face.)

Turk: Yeah, that was beyond awesome. Pretty damn hot too.

(There’s a bit of melancholy in his tone that encourages me to press harder.)

Annie: I get the feeling there’s more to this mood of yours than Zee’s feelings and memories being stirred up by Halloween. What’s going on?

(Because I know him so well, I feel his struggle, feel the temptation to resort to sexual innuendo and make this about the erotic side of his story.)

Turk: Didn’t you have some prepared questions?

Annie: Never mind that. Tell me.

Turk: (Springs to his feet. Paces.) Zee’s been... She wants a baby.

Annie: (claps hands together with glee) That’s wonderful! So y’all are trying to get pregnant?

Turk: How can I agree to a kid, knowing there’ll be years of Halloween costumes and Trick or Treating for her to suffer through?

Annie: Maybe we should do some of those prepared questions after all. Here’s one for you. What is the quality you most admire in Zeenie?

Turk: (Takes a deep breath, visibly switching gears and sits again. His shoulders ease, then his gaze zeroes in on mine.) Think you’re pretty smart, don’t you? Big all-knowing author-creator.

Annie: (Oh, if he only knew how little we sometimes know about our characters! I decide to brave through.) Out with it.

Turk: (Finally, he nods.) Courage. Which she has by the truckload.

Annie: What other quality ranked high on your admiration meter?

Turk: Her resilience. Her sense of fairness. I could have dealt with the gossip about our awkward first meet and her snubbing me. You know it. I know it. But Zee couldn’t live with the injustice of it.

Annie: In case you’ve forgotten, she’s got a stubborn streak and asserts her independence too. If she’s decided she can deal with participating in Halloween, then you need to let her try.

(Zeenie appears at my doorway, her eyes soft and liquid.)

Zeenie: She’s right, Turk. I can do this because I know you’ll be what I need when I need it. When we first felt the stir of mating pheromones, I needed to be apart from you and you gave me space. I needed to heal and you did what you had to in order to survive until I was ready for us.

Turk: I hate it when you’re hurting, Zee.

Zeenie: (She arches her brows, giving him a sexy once-over.) Three hundred sixty-four days of joy and one that bumps against a big ol’ bruise? We can handle it, love. Come on. I think you and I need some quiet time.

Annie: (No goodbyes necessary. We’ll meet again. But on her way out, Zee turns and gives me a big wink.) Gawd, I love those two!

Fab cover, Annie!

A 1st chapter excerpt of P&F can be found here . Buy links and info on my other books, on my website. We kicked off the week with Pamela V. Mason’s review of Phantoms & Fantasies on

Tuesday, Tami Brothers interviewed me on her blog about the hunks in my books and the males inhabiting my home. I also blogged on Petit Fours And Hot Tamales about embracing the unexpected.

Wednesday’s installment included a steamy excerpt from Phantoms & Fantasies on Sandra McGregor’s new blog. Life, Love, and a Good Book

Tomorrow the blog tour continues on Linsey Lanier’s blog. She will host a fun game of Spin the Bottle: Which Crainy would YOU kiss?


Saturday, October 22nd, I will choose a grand prize winner from all the comments throughout the week on my blog.

Because my books all revolve around matters of the heart, the grand prize will be a beautiful collection of semi-precious heart pendants and necklaces encased in their own wooden jewelry box! I received one of these collections from a Secret Santa one year and just love it! (Sorry, USA shipping only.)

Today, a free copy of Phantoms & Fantasies goes to one lucky commenter. No worries. I don’t mine e-mails for future mailings. This promotion is strictly to introduce new readers to Turk and Zeenie. Please feel free to comment. I’d love to hear what you think of these characters.

"Thanks for stopping by, Turk." Mary smiles up at him. She remembers the others. "Oh you, too, Annie, Carol and Zeenie.


  1. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:22 AM  

    LOL, Mary. I saw you drooling. Didn't hear a word that was said, did you? Just made goo-goo eyes from the corner.

    I have to admit, even as well as I know Turk, he still does it for me too!

  2. Linsey Lanier // October 20, 2011 at 8:21 AM  

    THAT'S Turk? Wow. Okay. I'm ditching the book I'm reading now and starting P&F today!

    Awesome interview, Carol. You inspire me with your creativity. Sounds like Zeenie and Turk might have another book in the future?

  3. Sheepskin Slippers // October 20, 2011 at 8:25 AM  

    Love it! i'm sat here in my slippers reading this interview and i have to admit that it's excellent! Turk sounds like a dream boat!!

  4. Michele Stefanides // October 20, 2011 at 8:27 AM  

    Holy smokes, gorgeous, sensitive, and madly in love with his lady. No wonder he's so hot!

  5. Sandy Elzie // October 20, 2011 at 8:57 AM  

    Is this YOUR idea of Turk? I had someone else in mind....but I love your guy too.

    Great tour!

  6. Pamela Mason // October 20, 2011 at 9:03 AM  

    Yup, we all want someone like Turk...
    Wonderful interview Annie!

  7. Mary Marvella // October 20, 2011 at 9:04 AM  

    Yes, ma'am. From the corner. (Sigh!)

  8. Mary Marvella // October 20, 2011 at 9:05 AM  


  9. Pam Asberry // October 20, 2011 at 9:52 AM  

    I know I want someone like Turk...deep sigh...

  10. Nightingale // October 20, 2011 at 11:13 AM  

    Now he is an inspiration! And Turk is adorable. Loved the interview. Many sales!

  11. Tami Brothers // October 20, 2011 at 11:13 AM  

    Oh Carol! You made me fall in love with this guy again. I pictured him as a frat boy type person in the beginning, but I LOVE this Turk much better. He is PERFECT for Zeenie.

    Ohhhhh, I can't wait to see how this baby thing works out for them.

    Big hugs to both Zeenie and Turk and to you for creating them.



  12. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 11:56 AM  

    Linsey, I don't think there's another book for Zee and Turk, but they might get a mini-story here and there or be mentioned in another book so readers can keep up with them.

  13. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 11:58 AM  

    Thanks, Sheepskin SLippers. I'm glad you enjoyed my little chat w/Turk. He's a dreamboat in more than looks. :)

  14. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 11:59 AM  

    Isn't that the truth, Michele. Hubba-hubba, pant-pant. LOL!

  15. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:01 PM  

    Sandy, showing my inspiration is always a risk. I know readers interpret according to their own preferences and that's fine. It's the personality and emotion that's most important.

  16. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:01 PM  

    You're welcome, Pamela. Thanks to you for all your help on this tour. :D

  17. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:01 PM  

    LOL, Mary!

  18. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:03 PM  

    Pam A, my mom's generation would've called him a dreamboat. Don't give up hope. You deserve a Turk, for sure!

  19. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:05 PM  

    Thanks, Nightengale! Thanks for commenting. :)

  20. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 12:08 PM  

    Hi, Tami. Yeah, I was kinda swooning while creating the interview. Didn't expect Zeenie to show up, but I guess she missed her man. :)

  21. Mary Ricksen // October 20, 2011 at 2:03 PM  

    I love Ingo Annie! I first saw him on General Hospital. He's still there. Wonder if he is gonna stay with the show when it leaves day time and goes networthy?
    Great interview Mary. And thanks for stopping by the fuzzies, we love you Annie!

  22. Pamela Varnado // October 20, 2011 at 2:21 PM  

    Hi Carol,

    It was wonderful seeing you at M&M. I enjoy reading your books, and Ingo Rademacher, what a hottie!

    P&F is a fabulous read. Great story. Great cover. Great character development. Oh yeah!!!!

  23. Josie // October 20, 2011 at 3:39 PM  

    Thank you, MM, for inviting Carol, aka Annie to the Pink Fuzzy Slipper blog.

    I read the excerpt and Turk sounds fantastic. Sincere congrats on your book!

  24. Anonymous // October 20, 2011 at 5:33 PM  

    Great interview Mary. Carol, Turk is like a fine wine, just getting better and better.


  25. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 6:14 PM  

    Thanks, Mary R. I never watched GH, so I didn't have any preconceived notions about Ingo being Turk. Thanks for the luv! :D

  26. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 6:15 PM  

    Aw, thanks, Pam V. You're such a sweetie. I so miss all my GRW friends!!!

  27. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 6:16 PM  

    I agree, Sia. *ggg*

  28. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 6:17 PM  

    A sincere thank you to you to, Josie. The Fuzzies are a great group of ladies.

  29. Patrice // October 20, 2011 at 8:43 PM  

    Great interview. He is definitely drool worthy. I love the way you learn about the two of them through dialogue. I might try this for my on characters. Thank you.

  30. Scarlet Pumpernickel // October 20, 2011 at 8:46 PM  

    Wow!What an excellent blog post and Turk is so hot! Definitely someone I'd like to know better. Thanks for visiting and allowing us to meet Turk.

  31. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 10:12 PM  

    Patrice, I've learned a lot about my characters through having conversations with them or having them just have random conversations with each other.

    I've had them write letters to their parents. I've had them write in a diary. It's amazing the thigns that come out. Things I hadn't consciously thought of before, but were just there.

    Good luck with your characters.

  32. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 10:13 PM  

    Thanks, Scarlet P! Glad to be here on the Fuzzies. :D

  33. Barbara Monajem // October 20, 2011 at 10:29 PM  

    Awwww. Turk is such a sweetie!

  34. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 20, 2011 at 10:48 PM  

    Hey, Barbara! I agree. Not a bad guy to have in your corner.

  35. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 21, 2011 at 2:08 AM  

    Random drawing revealed Nightengale as the winner. Please contact me through and I'll get your copy of Phantoms & Fantasies to you.


  36. Mary Marvella // October 21, 2011 at 3:34 AM  

    Yay, Linda!

  37. Mary Marvella // October 21, 2011 at 3:35 AM  

    Thanks so much, Carol! I can see the visitors enjoyed your blog

  38. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // October 21, 2011 at 9:20 PM  

    Thanks, again Mary and fellow Fuzzies for hosting me here. I really appreciate it!