Now Available: The Billionaire’s Ink Mistress

BillionairesInkMistress-The72smHappy book birthday to Jackson and Diana!

It’s not necessary to read The Billionaire Submissive first, but if you’ve been wondering about that stained glass project, you’ll get a nice update in The Billionaire’s Ink Mistress. Donovan and Lilly make several appearances to help introduce his attorney and best friend, Jackson Montgomery Warring, and his future Mistress, Diana Temple, aka The Priestess.

To celebrate, I’m offering two prize packages, one to be given away here, and the other given to a newsletter subscriber.

Each package includes a $50 e-gift certificate to any online book retailer (I’ll split it at multiple venues if you wish) and both Billionaires in Bondage books, signed print or electronic, winner’s choice.  Open to anyone on the planet.  Yes, if you choose print, I’m willing to send the books internationally.

To enter this giveaway, comment on this post as many times as you wish.  I’ll use Pick Giveaway Winner to generate a winner from comments on April 17th.  If you review either Billionaire book, please do send me the link in comments so I can add you to my collection and get an extra entry at the same time!

To start the discussion, what element of BDSM or kink would you LOVE to read more of that no one’s really doing right now?  Daddy Doms, breath play, knife play, bondage without D/s elements…?  Anything goes!

Sold!

I’m thrilled to announce that Charlie (the novel I finished for NaNoWriMo) and his brother, Vincent, are both going to have a home at Carina Press!

It’s ironic, because I started Charlie’s story for one of their Christmas anthologies last year or maybe even the year before (time flies).  But he had other ideas.  (The story of my life.)  His book clocked in at 91,500, one of the longest books I’ve written since the very beginning.

The reason I’m not saying titles is because we’re looking at new ones, both for the book and the series.  The original inspiration for the book was an interview I did for RT in Chicago:

Burkhart responded that an interesting mix would be romance and horor. Perhaps, even, some kind of serial killer romance. If she wrote one, the author revealed the title would probably be “Killer Of My Heart.”

So “Killer of My Heart” will be changing, but I don’t know what it’ll be yet.  The Gregar is strong with this one.  Very strong.  Yes, he’s an assassin/serial killer.  So is his brother. Very dark, bloody, and violent.  And erotic.  Mustn’t forget that.  *winks*

I’ll update the Coming Soon page once I have dates!

First Draft and First Pass are DONE

It’s been a long week at the Evil Day Job, so when my boss offered to let me shut down a little early yesterday, I closed the work laptop off at 3:30 and opened my personal laptop.  I knew I was close to finishing The Billionaire Submissive — I only had 3 sketched out scenes to go.  In the end, I managed to combine two of them into one for double duty, smoothed out the connection (since I already had the ending written), wrote the epilogue, and YAY SNOOPY DANCE!!!

The first draft was done!  75K.

But then I was reading over it later last night and realized I had one scene penciled in (017B) that never got completed.  Boo.  I was working on it last night rather late, because Princess was going to be out late at a pool party.  I went to bed near midnight when she texted me that she was safely installed at her friend’s house for the night and went to bed.  I hadn’t finished the scene yet, and I didn’t have that killer last line I like to try and do for each scene or chapter, that little hook to keep pulling you along, but I was too tired to stay up.

Unfortunately, within an hour I was up again with the most brutal, wretched headache I’ve ever had.  Ironically, while lying there waiting for the spasm in the back of my head/neck area to stop, I got the hook/line I needed.  Since I couldn’t get comfortable anyway, I got up and sat on my heating pad for awhile and typed out the last few lines of that scene. 

[The headache is hard to describe but it’s definitely muscular, though not a typical muscle spasm.  It’s more the back of my head than my neck.  I didn’t pull anything and I don’t think anything’s out.  It just suddenly got tight and then went from bad to worse.  Very probably stress related and long hours on the story this week after hours didn’t help any.  And don’t suggest chiropractors because just the thought makes me want to throw up.  I can’t bear the cracking sounds and electric shock gives me the heebie-jeebies too.]

The heating pad didn’t help.  In fact, it made it worse.  I swear I could feel the blood pounding in my head.  So I tried an ice pack and eventually dozed off with ice on my neck.  I don’t know what time it was when I woke up and went back to bed, but I was stupid foggy enough I forgot to plug my phone in on the bedside table (something I do every night).

The headache is better this morning but the tendons and muscles on the back of my skull are sore and tender today.  My head still feels like a hollowed out egg shell.  So unfortunately, we cancelled the trip to the fair.  I just couldn’t face walking around in heat, trying to hold my head up.

I’ve sat here on my heating pad today and completed the first read through.  I’ve removed all the [notes], smoothed sentences, connected scenes, etc. and made myself cry.  *grins*  Always a good sign.

With the new scene from last night, the book is just under 76K.

Interested beta readers can drop me an email (joelysueburkhart AT gmail DOT com) if you’d like a first look before I do the final editing pass and send it to my editor.

Snippet:  These are the few lines I added last night to that missing scene while waiting on the headache to abate.

Donovan opened the back door of the Jag but she took one look at the leather seats and grabbed the dog’s collar before he could jump into the car.  “I don’t think this is a good idea.”

I can’t wait until she can grab and control me like that.  Donovan had to drag his gaze away with a brutal shake.  Idiot.  Jealous of a dog.  “Of course it’s a good idea. We’ll have a very very good time.”

She heard the thickness in his voice and her lips twitched.  “Are you sure?  Maybe I should just stay here and get to work on your design for the windows.”

“Don’t you dare tease me like that, Miss Harrison.”

“All right, Mr. Morgan.  But Hank rides in the front with me between my knees.”

Donovan muttered, “Lucky dog.”

Final Tally for July

72,370 words.  Gulp, a new personal record!

The big thrashing scene is finally done.  I have another fairly major test to get through, and then a subplot with the stained glass window.  One scene to go back and fill in.  And then a little smoothing…  and she’s done!

Word count in The Billionaire Submissive is sitting at just over 67K.  I don’t think I’ll go over 75K unless my brain comes up with some new scenes yet again.

I’m so pleased with this story.  Very pleased.  I can’t wait to share it with you all

I wish I knew Lilly.  Hell, I wish I had half her courage, wit and sensual charm.  She’s hilarious.  She’s funny, passionate, sexy as hell, and she knows it.  She curses like a sailor – in fact, it’s become a major plot element.  Donovan is endearing and annoying at the same time.  He’s so arrogant and stuck up, until Lilly brings him to his knees.  He cares about her so much, doing all the little things for her that just doesn’t even occur to her.  That’s true love in my book.  A man willing to pay attention and step in and do things for his woman to help and protect and care for her without her request.

Now he just has to convince her how serious he really is.

Snippet:  The morning after.

Donovan took one look around his bedroom and decided he’d better invest in a top-notch housecleaning company.  And probably an electrician, he added, noting the reading lamp.  It hung askew, dangling from wires out of a hole in the wall.

Also a furniture chain, because he’d bent the decorative bars of the headboard.

The comforter wasn’t salvageable.

The off-white carpet probably wasn’t either, because the cherry pie on the floor resembled a horrendous murder scene.

The lady who’d created such a mess was sprawled sideways in his bed.  Her hair had driven him nuts, tickling his nose and getting in his mouth every time he rolled over.  She was a blanket thief and bed hog and slept like the dead.

And he’d never been happier in his life.

Creeping closer to 70K

Long gone are the 6-8K days from earlier this month when the story was flowing hot and sweet.  I’ve been struggling to get 200-300 words the last few days, but I’m touching the story daily and working to get over the hump.  I truly do only have a few scenes left, but some of them are major.

Mr. Morgan still has to receive a true thrashing, though I’m leading up to that scene in tonight’s wordage.  *wicked laugh*

I can’t believe tomorrow’s the last day of July already.  I hoped to finish this month but I’m not quite going to make it.  I’m just too busy.  Princess has band camp this week (which means 4 trips back and forth to the high school each day), the two youngest are at my Dad’s, and school prep is in full swing.  I need to go supply shopping this weekend (you know my track record with finding all supplies in one store, hahaha) and we’re planning to go to the fair on Saturday.  It’ll be my first ever.  I’m still putting in longer hours than usual for work, but if I can at least touch the story each day, I’m hoping to keep that iron hot until I can find the time to just let the deluge sweep me through the last few scenes.

Hanging in there.  Just under 64K total in The Billionaire Submissive tonight and I’m going to try and write a bit longer even though I’ll pay for it tomorrow.

He paused a moment, dark eyes flickering toward her where she lay on his bed.  “Aren’t you going to do the same?  Mistress?”

She smiled, lazily kicking her foot back and forth off the edge of the bed.  His eyes followed the movement like a dog chasing a tennis ball.  “Eventually.  I’m having too much fun watching you.”

He took off the shirt, revealing the darkly tanned sculpted lines of his upper body.  Somewhere, he went without his shirt a great deal, and he did enough exercise or physical work to cover every inch of him in lean slabs of muscle.  Black hair curled across his chest, a nice mat that she’d have fun with later.

His hands went to his trousers, but he closed his eyes and breathed deeply.  Poor boy must be on the edge again.  This is going to be a night he’ll never forget if he’s ready to come just from me watching him take off his clothes. 

Relenting a little, she decided to ask him a few questions to distract him enough that he could get his pants off.  “You said you had limited experience.  How many scenes have you done?  How many Mistresses have you played with?”

“Casual stuff at a club, ten, maybe twenty times.”

Calmer, he managed to unbutton his trousers.  The black material slid down his thighs, revealing skin as tanned as his upper body.  He wore silk boxers, but she had a feeling he’d be tanned underneath too.  Yum.  Where did he do this deliciously naked tanning?  The same dark hair sprinkled his long, powerful thighs.  He kicked off his shoes and lifted each foot to pull off his socks.  God, he even had sexy, gorgeous feet, well manicured and perfectly shaped, almost as elegant as his hands.

“A so-called Mistress who wanted to do a strip tease for me in pleather boots and latex while waving a fake crop around?  Once.  I learned my lesson.  A real Mistress away from the club?  You’re my first.”

Oh dear.  No wonder he’s wound so tightly.  As a submissive, Donovan Morgan was pretty much a virgin.

A Little Help From My Friends

I’ve never pulled on my own background as much as I have for this WIP (The Billionaire Submissive).  We lived in the Twin Cities area of MN for almost 5 years…13 years ago.  I’ve only been back once in the past five years.  Lots of things have changed, but there’s also a feel, a vibe, that you get only after being there in the city.

Donovan’s from the Twin Cities area but I wasn’t exactly sure where until I started exploring some of his past unexpectedly a few days ago.  He’s from an older, well established northern St. Paul neighborhood, but I hadn’t tried to pin him down until he dragged me BACK to that neighborhood.  Then I needed to know some streets, or at least a general idea of where exactly we were.  Was it North Saint Paul?  Maplewood?  What were the names of the streets in that area?  I honestly couldn’t remember.

Food plays a huge role in this book, and I remembered a bakery in that general area.  But where was it?  That Man thought it was Payne Ave but he couldn’t remember the name of it.  I thought it was off 7th.  I finally asked my friend Wanda for help, who still lives in the Twins.  It sounds like the Swedish bakery I’m remembering is probably gone, but it was on Payne.  That narrowed my general area down.  Then I used Google maps street view to finally pinpoint what I wanted.

I also needed a diner in the area, so I made up one based on the names that are close to that area (I didn’t want to use a real place).  Hopefully it’s enough to give a solid sense of place!  Thank you, Wanda!

1K+ tonight and finally moving a little through the slower scene.

I adore this snippet.  This is the first time Mr. Morgan really gets a taste of Lilly’s spirit.  Oh, she’s played him a couple of different ways already to get what she wants, but this time, she makes him regret being an arrogant idiot.  *grins*

Her patience was unraveling very fast.  “How exactly did you intend to blackmail me, Mr. Morgan?”

“I was going to threaten to tell everyone exactly what kind of business you’re running on the side.”

She nodded, her irritation rising.  “So you were going to tell people like my parents and friends and professional clients that I’m a whore.  Yeah, that’s a sure way to get a woman to agree to get into bed with you.”

He had the grace to squirm uncomfortably beneath her accusing glare.  “I thought—”

“Yeah, we’ve already been over what a boneheaded idiot you are.”  She stood up and snatched the contract off his desk.  Most of it had been crossed out anyway.  “This is what I think of you and your worthless contract, Mr. Morgan.”  Then she tore the papers in half, threw them on his desk, and stalked toward the door.

“Miss Harrison, wait.  Lilly!”

She heard him coming around his desk but she didn’t slow or turn to look at him.  She started to open the door but he flung up an arm and slammed it shut, pressing his weight against it to keep her from opening it again.

“Mistress.”

That got her attention.  She looked at him but didn’t soften her face or give him her words.

“I’m sorry.  I’m an idiot.  I was wrong.”

“Wrong to even thinking about blackmailing me?  Or wrong to think I would actually accept money in exchange for having sex with you?”

“Shhh,” he lowered his voice.  “I don’t know how sound proof this door is.”

Ha.  She could only hope the simpering Miss Wruthers was pressed against the door on the other side listening avidly.  That would serve him right.  “That’s your problem, Mr. Morgan.  Not mine.  You’re the idiot who’s bewildered why I’m furious that you keep trying to shove money down my throat along with your cock.”

“Lilly, please!”

“Please what?  Please forgive you yet again for trying to make me into your very own prostitute?  Maybe you thought I’d charge by the lash.  Drop your pants now and give me a grand.  I’ll see how many cracks I can get in before your secretary comes charging in to see if I’m killing you.”

“I’m sorry,” he whispered furiously, his face so red it almost made her laugh despite her anger.  “Please.”

She at least stopped hurling comments back, but she didn’t unbend her stiffness or withdrawal.

“I was wrong.  Terribly wrong.  You ought to punish me.”

She let her shoulders relax and he sagged against the door in relief.  “I don’t know, Mr. Morgan.  You haven’t even answered my questionnaire yet so I know what implements to use.”

“Anything.  Anything you want.”  She didn’t have to drop her gaze to his crotch to know he was aroused again.  “Punish me any way you want.  I deserve it for insulting you yet again with my ignorance.”

Pretending to think about it, she shifted her portfolio to her other hand and then finally nodded.  “Meet me at Dmitre’s tonight at 7:00 p.m.”

“I can pick you up…”

She narrowed a glare on him and he raised his hands.  “Or not.  I’ll just meet you there.  But you will allow me to buy you dinner?  It’s the least I can do.”

“Very well.”

“And after?”  His voice deepened and he dared to touch her arm, just a light brush like he’d take her elbow and escort her to the elevator if she’d allow it.

She gave him a little nod, and he grasped her arm more confidently.  He opened the door and she was half surprised to see the secretary typing away furiously at her desk just feet away instead of hovering outside to eavesdrop.  “And after… dessert.”

“Your place or mine?”

His voice was such a rough growl that Miss Wruthers looked up, wide eyed with alarm.  Lilly smiled and waved goodbye to her, but she did lower her voice to ensure his privacy as much as possible.  “Yours.”

“Do I need to have any…equipment?”

The elevator dinged and the door slid open.  Ignoring whoever might be stepping out as well as the watching secretary, she reached up and dragged his mouth to hers for a hearty kiss.  “Just this, lover boy.”

Releasing him, she patted his cheek and stepped onto the elevator.  Before the door could shut, he blocked it with his hand.  Panting, he stared at her as if afraid to let her go.  His hair was mussed up, his tie crooked, and those poor tortured trousers would never be the same.  “Lilly?”

“Yes, Donovan?”

He cast his gaze down the length of her body to land on her favorite red heels.  “Wear these shoes tonight.”

She normally didn’t like to take such blatant orders from a man, but for him…  She smiled. “You got it.”

Powering Through the Wall

Stop by RT Book Reviews blog to read more about the pony play behind Her Grace’s Stable!

That last scene was a killer.  It took me a good 3 days to get through it, and my momentum has been dogged ever since.  We had a full weekend and the next two weeks are going to be balls-to-the-wall at the Evil Day Job.  That means longer hours, less lunch, and more stress headaches at the end of the day, which saps my desire to then pull out my file and spend more time on the computer.

But I’m still pushing ahead.  I’m still adding new (unplanned, grrr!) scenes and working through some of the backstory that decided to pop up a little.  I never knew I’d be pulling on the almost five years we lived in MN to write this book, but it’s been very helpful.

There’s also an Easter egg for those of you who’ve read The Billionaire Zombie’s Virgin Witch.  *winks*

Right at 59,300 for The Billionaire Submissive and 64,700 for the month.  PLUS, I also worked on the Coyote Con website this weekend AND stared the schedule.  Woot!

Snippet:

“Some Mistresses don’t believe in giving any pleasure to the submissive.  The sub exists for his Mistress’s pleasure, not the other way around.  If he’s not on his knees worshiping her with his tongue, then he hasn’t learned his place and must be punished.  I’m not that kind of Mistress.”

He accepted the new stack of papers and even dropped his gaze to them, but his eyes didn’t move across the page.  He’s not reading them.  Yet.  “I won’t deny there’s a certain appeal to that image.”

“The sub on his knees or me punishing you on your desk?”

He smiled faintly but it didn’t quite reach his eyes and he didn’t meet her gaze.  “Both.”

“But..?”  When he shrugged and flipped the page, even though he couldn’t have read it yet, she said what he could not yet bring himself to admit.  “You’re hoping for a Mistress who’s as eager to give pleasure as receive it.”

She’d never seen such a powerful and obnoxiously gorgeous man blush so prettily.  Again, that shrug, without lifting his eyes from the page.

“If I had your pants down around your ankles, I’d have to give you a blow job you wouldn’t soon forget.  While I punished you.”

There, his eyes met hers, all searing intensity and pulsing with rising desire.  “You would do that?”

For me?  He didn’t say the last two words, but she heard it and it broke her heart.  She was beginning to believe his arrogant asshole role was just a mask he wore to protect the inside submissive who feared no one would ever be able to love him as he was, no matter how much wealth he possessed.  “Absolutely.”

His gaze wandered to the door briefly, as though he was contemplating locking it so he could test her honesty.  When he looked back into her face, she didn’t like the shield he wore once more.  “How much is it going to cost me?”

It took all her will not to reveal how much that hurt.  He’s only striking out to make sure I don’t hurt him first.  It’s his natural survival instinct.

But it still sucked.

Keeping her voice light, she gave a nod to the papers he’d been pretending to read.  “You tell me.”

Review: Her Grace’s Stable

What an incredible review from Naamah at BDSM Book Reviews!  This is one of those that set me beaming for days and there are too many wonderful snippets that make it difficult for me to pick one, so definitely stop over to read the whole thing.

Burkhart has accomplished something extraordinary here: a genuine ménage story, one where everyone loves everyone else, and the reader likes and identifies with everyone equally.

She has also accomplished another feat in Arthur’s character: an alpha male who is not a narcissistic, pushy ass, and who also bottoms and eventually submits, rather than being depicted as unilaterally dominant. It’s something all too rare in erotica; unfortunate, because it’s fucking delicious. I genuinely got lightheaded at a couple of points, and more than once, his unexpected behavior genuinely surprised me – but in a way that was perfect for the plot and only deepened his character. Just perfect.

Thankfully, there is a good deal of rough sex here. Really, really good rough sex. And lots of chewy, tasty anguish. My love of angst had several multiple orgasms, I think, but the book did not leave me in a bad place, making it just about perfect.

Well-done, all around. Very well-done.

Thank you so much, Naamah!

When It’s Not About the Word Count

So I’ve been rocking the words in July…. until last night.

I’m stuck in the same scene second night in a row.  I’ve attacked it from four different angles so far. And I’m still working on it.  I think I’m almost there.  It’s one of those seemingly easy scenes, but under the surface I have SO MUCH going on.  Fears and secret messages galore.    No toys, no bondage, no play…but all heart.  And it’s hard.  Very hard.

It’d be better if I could find the right theme song.  Poor Molly has been sending me ideas left and right but the Muse is fickle sometimes.  Lick by Joi is almost right… but not quite.  Something along those lines, although more like Closer by NIN.  Any recs?

Stress at the Evil Day Job is through the roof, which is complicating my evening writing.  (I’ve lost lunch writing too.  Just too much to do.)  But hopefully I can keep going a little at a time and finish by the end of the month.

56,500 and counting in The Billionaire Submissive (61,400 for the month)

Snippet:

“Mr. Morgan?”  Miss Wruthers squeaked, if possible even higher and more irritating than normal.  The way every one of her sentences seemed to end in a question put his teeth on edge, but he didn’t respond.  His temper was already legendary, and shouting at the poor woman to stop being so hesitant surely wouldn’t help.  “Miss Harrison is here?”

“Thank you.”  He forced himself to speak slowly and calmly.  “Send her in.”

This time, he wouldn’t rise and greet her politely.  I can’t.  Or she’ll see the massive hard on threatening to tear my pants.  She’ll just have to assume I’m being my normal arrogant self.

When Lilly walked into his office, he frantically thanked every deity known to man that he’d remained seated.  Because he would have thoroughly humiliated himself.  As it was, he nearly came in his pants.

She wore a high-collared, low-cut red blouse the same color as her painted toes, a tight black pencil skirt that hugged every inch of her glorious hips, and those shoes.  The ones from the pictures.  So high he didn’t know how a woman could possibly walk in them.  But she did, each step swaying her hips in a hypnotic dance that made his mouth go dry with lust.  When she sat down and crossed her legs, the short black skirt rode up enough to show him the top of her stockings.

He gulped, sweat breaking out on his forehead.  Real thigh-high stockings and a garter belt.  A thin strip of bare thigh tantalized him above the silk.  It made him think about sliding his hand up that skirt, seeking what else she might have on beneath the material.  Or better yet, nothing at all.

“Good morning, Mr. Morgan.”  She leaned down to set her portfolio beside her on the floor, giving him a good, long look down her shirt.  No bra met his gaze, just plump breasts lifted by what looked like a black corset.  “I trust that you slept well last night?”

Dear God.  A corset.  Stockings.  If she pulls a crop out of her bag I’m going to pass out when my dick explodes.

He jammed a finger at the intercom and barked, “coffee” at his secretary.

“Evidently not,” Lilly laughed softly, a deep velvety purr that made him quiver in his chair.  “Too bad.  You’re going to need all your wits about you for this contract negotiation.”

Ah, so that’s what this was.  She’d deliberately worn this outrageously sexy outfit to make sure she got what she wanted out of the negotiation.

With a glare, he retorted, “It’s not going to work.”

Her eyebrows rose and she looked at him innocently.  “What’s not going to work?”

“This.”  He waved a hand at her and averted his gaze, sure that he was blushing like a virgin.  That only made his cheeks burn hotter.  “Some sexy clothes aren’t going to make me lose my head and give you what you want.”

The door opened and Miss Wruthers scurried in with a cup of coffee.  Wide eyed, she froze at the corner of his desk, her gaze flickering between them both.

Lilly lounged in her chair in a sexy drape of negligent ease that made him want to leap up and pace frantically again.  Or better yet, maybe he’d just bury his face in her cleavage.  “You’re going to give me exactly what I want, Mr. Morgan and it’s not going to be because of my clothes.”