Good morning, Annie! I can't believe I got you here. I love having
my GRW sisters as my guests. Ladies, please welcome Annie.

What's on your mind today?

Last night I watched an episode of Rizzoli & Isles. A 13 year old girl was missing, a 17 year old girl was found dead. During the race to find the missing girl, I found myself tearing up several times because I knew the character Rizzoli and she was deeply affected. You see, Jane Rizzoli is a tough-as-nails detective with a marshmallow center she tries her best to keep under wraps. If she was moved, I was moved. Rizzoli is a Tess Gerritsen character and one I can identify with.

As a writer, my job is to portray that kind of character in my writing.

Identifiable. Strong. Compassionate. Conflicted. Someone you’d like to know. (See excerpt from Bittersweet Obsessions)

My job is also to evoke in my reader that same empathy I felt watching Jane Rizzoli valiantly working to save a child.

(Mini excerpt from Phantoms & Fantasies)

“I always let you off the hook, but not this time. As much as I'd like to, I can't continue to be your crutch. It's not what either one of us deserves.” The corners of Di's mouth quirked upward. “Coop is growing impatient, wanting us to start a family, and I won't do that until we're officially married.”

“Oh, Di, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to keep you from living your life too.” Zeenie meant the words, even if they were accompanied by a sinking feeling. Di was her best friend. Maybe Zeenie hadn't meant to do so, but it didn't change the fact that Di and Coop were waiting for her to get on with her life so they could live theirs. How mortifying. She should have seen it. Hell, maybe she had and just hadn't wanted to admit it.

Di interrupted her thoughts with a fierce hug. “You didn't ask me to wait, Zee. I did it because I wanted to. You needed a safety net after the rape, and I was glad to catch you whenever you faltered. But you're stronger now. Much more than you give yourself credit for. You don't need me anymore. Not really.”

“I don't know about that.” Zeenie withdrew from Di's embrace. The mere mention of the rape always made her want to pull into a shell. “Sometimes I want to go forward and have a normal life so bad I ache. But wanting it and actually being normal are two very different things.”

“You're ready. You don't have to jump in at the deep end. Just dip your toes in the water. Go wading tonight.”

“With Turk?” Zeenie grimaced. “No thanks.”

Sweetie, do you realize how he looks at you?” Di turned Zeenie toward the mirror. “How could he not be interested?”

As an author, my job is to promote and sell my books, so I won’t pretend that’s not why I’m here. However, I wanted to touch on the subject of the reader’s role and how it’s changing. These days, review sites are flooded with requests for reviews, so getting reviews from our readers is a real plus. Other readers pay attention to the reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, Shelfari and LibraryThing or whatever site they buy e-books from.

So, I’d like to give away two copies of Bittersweet Obsessions and one of Phantoms & Fantasies, winners chosen from those who comment below and say they’re willing to read the book and at least post a review on Amazon within the next two weeks. If you’d like to post it on other sites as well, FB or Tweet about it too – that would be icing on the cake!

I’m not requesting a glowing review, just an honest one. If you’d like a longer excerpt before you make up your mind, the links above will take you to my Books page, or simply go to

So, who’s up for reading and reviewing? I’ll be here off and on to answer any questions, if you have them.

Okay, ladies. you know you want a chance to read these wonderful stories.


  1. Mary Marvella // August 3, 2011 at 1:42 AM  

    Good morning, Annie!

  2. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 2:06 AM  

    Good morning, Mary. Thanks to you and the PFSW crew for hosting me today. I'm looking forward to interacting with your followers.

  3. Tami Brothers // August 3, 2011 at 6:26 AM  

    Hey Carol/Annie!

    Love seeing you over here. I have not heard of Rizzoli and Isles. Will have to check those out.

    Love that excerpt!!!! These books are in my Kindle and in the queue to read next. CAN'T WAIT!!! I've heard so many great things about them.

    Wishing you all the very best.


  4. Linsey Lanier // August 3, 2011 at 8:30 AM  

    Carol, I already have your books on my Kindle, too. I started "Bittersweet Obsessions" this weekend and all I can say is wow. I mean that. It's a really good story, well-written, with a lot of emotion. I see many 5-star reviews in your future - and not just from me. :)

    PS: To all those readers out there, one of the best ways you can help out your favorite authors is with a good review. (Especially 4 and 5 stars - but only if you mean it. If I think less of a book, I usually don't rate it.)

  5. Anonymous // August 3, 2011 at 10:18 AM  

    My husband and I enjoy watching Rizzoli and Isles. It is one of a few shows we can agree on.
    For those of you that haven't read Bittersweet Obsessions you need to. Annie has created a very interesting world with special chararters searching for love. A must read, I think.

    Susan Carlisle

  6. Judith Keim // August 3, 2011 at 11:15 AM  

    HI, Annie! thanks for visitng the Fuzzies...Your excerpts were intriguing...good luck with the stories. I'm sure they'll do well!!! Congrats!

  7. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 11:41 AM  

    Tami, Thanks for dropping by. I'm so glad you've been hearing "great things about them." That warms my li'l ol' heart. :-D

  8. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 11:42 AM  

    Oh, Linsey, thank you! I've enjoyed your stories too, but am looking forward to a longer length one soon.

  9. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 11:46 AM  

    Thanks, Judy. I appreciate you PFSW ladies having me here. Getting the word out about new e-books takes a lot of work and a lot of word-of-mouth.

  10. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 2:14 PM  

    Hey, Susan! Isn't that a good show? I just love the characters. At first I thought Dr. Moira was going to be like Bones, but she's got this childlike quality sometimes that makes me want to give her a hug. lol

    I'm so glad you enjoyed Bittersweet Obsessions. Thanks!

  11. Nightingale // August 3, 2011 at 4:02 PM  

    Loved teh excerpt. Got home last night and just had to check by the PFS today. Enjoyed your post.

  12. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 4:14 PM  

    Thanks, Nightengale.

    Remember, folks, if you want in the drawing for free e-books to read and review, you must express your willingness to do so.

  13. Pamela Varnado // August 3, 2011 at 4:54 PM  

    Morning Carol/Annie,

    Welcome. I watched the Rizzoli and Isles episode also last night. What a tear jerker! While some of the show's plotting is unrealistic at times, I love all the characters.

    I've also read Bittersweet Obsessions and loved it. Your evocative language constantly filled my mind with vivid images. I can't wait to read Phantoms & Fantasies.

  14. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 6:24 PM  

    Aw, Pamela, thank you!

    I really enjoyed After Glow too (read it twice!) and am looking forward to more from you. Keep writing!

  15. Mary Marvella // August 3, 2011 at 8:07 PM  

    Hey, Carol! You are having a good day so far. I owe you a review or 2.

  16. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 3, 2011 at 10:10 PM  

    That would be great, Mary. :)

  17. Barbara Monajem // August 3, 2011 at 10:24 PM  

    Hi, Carol/Annie! I was about to turn in for the night when I remembered to check the Fuzzies, and I'm glad I did! I'd guess I'd better buy a Kindle SOON because the list of books I have to buy for it is growing soooooo long. :)

  18. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 4, 2011 at 1:17 AM  

    Barbara, in the meantime, go to Amazon and download their FREE Kindle app for your computer. You can get a head start on that list!

  19. Unknown // August 4, 2011 at 5:56 PM  



  20. Vanetta Q // August 4, 2011 at 6:05 PM  

    Definitely willing and will give honest reviews. Thanks for the chance!

    Vanetta @ Ymail Dot Com

  21. Toni // August 4, 2011 at 6:37 PM  

    Hi Anne!

    I'm Willing!! The story sound very interesting. Nice take on the soulmate!


  22. Mary Ricksen // August 4, 2011 at 7:49 PM  

    Hello fellow PFS'ers and thanks for the interesting interview Carol/Annie. I wish I had the chance to read your story and post a review. But I won't be able to do it for awhile, so that won't help you. I am soo behind! And now more edits... I wish you the very best and you can be sure I will be reading your new story very shortly! Good luck and great sales, author's rock!

  23. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 4, 2011 at 9:09 PM  

    Yay!!! That Facebook plea worked like a charm. Leanne, Vanetta and Toni, I'll be in touch with you shortly.

    Mary R, I totally understand. I'm behind on my reading pile too.

  24. Thelma // August 4, 2011 at 9:50 PM  

    Oh yes I would be more than willing to read and post many reviews. I read all kinds of books, just for the love of reading. My addy is

  25. Carol Burnside aka Annie Rayburn // August 4, 2011 at 10:45 PM  

    Hi, Thelma.
    Vanetta said she was sending you over. I have my three, but I'm feeling generous tonight. Expect an e-mail from me and Thanks!

    What a terrific way to wind up my visit here at The Pink Fuzzy Slipper Writers blog!

  26. Mary Marvella // August 6, 2011 at 1:15 AM  

    Fabulous job, Annie! thanks for being here.

  27. Vanetta Q // August 6, 2011 at 3:57 PM  

    whoooo! i am reading now!

  28. Josie // August 9, 2011 at 9:01 AM  

    Hi Annie/Carol,
    I had commented the other day on this blog, but for some reason it didn't show. Anyway, thanks for visiting the Pink Fuzzies. Like Barbara, I need to invest in a Kindle soon, also.