I miss my youth – win a FREE ebook!

I miss the days when I felt confident enough to lead with my heart and not my head – when common sense didn’t stop me from having fun – when I had the desire and the impetus to experience adventures – when I felt invincible and couldn’t comprehend my parents’ worries.

Today as a woman with several decades behind me and offspring of my own, my perspective is quite different. Today I (try to) think before I act, weigh the possible results of every decision, and say thanks everyday that I survived my youth and still manage to make it through my present. I don’t lead a boring life by any means, but I do lead a more cautious one.

My two grown children have followed their hearts to travel the world, jump from airplanes, run obstacle races, play extreme sports, explore caves, hike mountains, respond to danger as first responders, learn and use new skills, take gambles, and always push themselves a few steps further. It would be sooo easy to live vicariously through them. And now I truly emphathize with my parents’ angst…

My characters are not boring people either. When I write I include some of my past experiences, borrow some of my children’s lives, and certainly toss in my dreams, to create people who live life to the fullest.

Have you read any of my books? Would you like to take a guess and try to win a FREE ebook of one of my novels?

Listed below are 3 columns – a character, a profession, a book title.  See how many you can match up. The first 4 people to play this game and get AT LEAST 1 complete answer right will win a FREE ebook. (hint: for easy clues, go to  http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/chellecordero) Submit your answer in the comments below

1:  Adam Sherman
A: artist
r:: Final Sin
2: Tom Hughes
B: state trooper
s:: Common Bond, Tangled Hearts
3: Julie Jennings
C: FBI agent
t: Bartlett’s Rule
4: Caitlyn Price
D: pr exec
u: Courage of the Heart
5: Matt Garratti
E:  business owner
v: Hyphema
6: Paige Andrews
F: bodyguard
w: Within the Law
7: Ryan Hunter
G: programmer
x: His Lucky Charm
8: Justin Ross
H: flight medic
y: A Chaunce of Riches
9: Ben Johnson
I:  paramedic
z: Hostage Heart

Keeping Up With Appearances

We tend to do this every day. We act happy when things are bothering us to keep our lives private, we go to jobs because we need the paycheck and the boss wants to see us putting on a happy face, we clothe ourselves in high fashion to look great even if the heels pinch a bit, and we look over our shoulders when we do give in to wild and impetuous desires.
When is the last time you rode a children’s ride in front of a shopping mall (rare but still there occasionally) or climbed into the bouncy house at a child’s birthday party? Have you played dress up and actually gone out in public with the same flair and pride as a four-year-old would? What did you order the last time you went out for a business dinner, the burger and greasy fries dripping in ketchup you really wanted, or the safe broiled sole and asparagus tips that seemed to meet with your host’s approval?
When is the last time you were really YOU?
Like Samantha in A Chaunce of Riches, are you leading a life others expect of you or are you living your dream? As I write this I am sitting in my robe and jammies in the mid-afternoon and doing a job I genuinely love, writing – very, very close to my dream. But I do admit, if someone came knocking at my door right now I would probably be embarrassed to be caught in my attire because it might not meet their expectations.
wouldn’t ask any one of you to publicly admit the ways you pretend to give others an impression that makes you feel more accepted, just as I would never divulge all of my secrets either. But think about it, do the sacrifices you make in order to “keep up appearances” really make you happy?
Maybe it’s time to start jumping in puddles, build a snowman (If you live in the northeast there is PLENTY of snow), eat a fun food, or just stay in our robes until mid-afternoon. Keeping up with our happiness may just be more important than keeping up with appearances.
I’d love to hear what you think.

Ben Johnson was hired as a bodyguard for a rich widow and her kid, but he never expected to be working for the woman who had abandoned him just when he had needed her the most. Damn it all, he still wanted her. Samantha Chaunce never thought she would have to explain why she married the rich man instead of Ben. Or that her husband had been murdered…and Ben was the prime suspect.

The Armchair Psychologist: Avoiding Success

            Writers like to people watch and we tend o read into someone’s actions and words just because that is the way our imagination works. While I did take a college level psych class for one term, I am not pretending to be a professional.
            Why is it human tendency to procrastinate? So often we put off the things we should be doing for tomorrow, or the next day. Hey, it took me at least three days between my getting an idea for this post and my actually putting it on paper. We allow ourselves to get distracted or busy with other things we think need to be done.
            Are we really being lazy or suffering from some level of A.D.D.? Or are we somehow afraid that if we try we won’t succeed – if we don’t try then our excuse is we just didn’t have the time. It’s a little like playing the lottery, “you have to be in it to win it”. Of course when we play and don’t win we grumble about wasting our money.
“He is able who thinks he is able.” ~Buddha
            We have to learn to focus on the positive even when the outcome is not what we were wishing for. What did we learn from what we did? Next time we try can we utilize those lessons and perhaps work towards getting closer to our goal? What was the real cost of trying? Maybe the cost wasn’t nearly as much as the potential of success.
            Success is not a measure of wealth, fame, title or possessions. Success is the satisfaction and confidence we feel about ourselves, it is the respect we receive from the people who mean the most to us. Success comes from believing on ourselves. Many of the characters I write about in my books are “successful”.
            Even though he comes from money, that isn’t what makes Brandon Price (His lucky Charm) a success. It’s his determination to make it in spite of the lack of relationship he has with his father. Brandon built and runs his own business in computer design, programming and robotics. He has a skill and reputation for the work he does which makes him a hot commodity to the government. Brandon does make a nice amount of money, but he is still a down to earth kind of guy and looks forward to taking care of the woman he loves, Caitlyn Smythe.
            Not all of my characters have complete confidence. Ben Johnson (A Chaunce of Riches) is a capable private investigator, but he is intimidated by Samantha Chaunce’s wealth and worries that he doesn’t have anything to “give her” in their relationship. He almost gives up trying.
            Whether it’s past disappointments, lack of confidence in ourselves, or some limited measure of success, we tend to fear trying. We procrastinate, We make excuses. We let distractions help us avoid doing the things we need to do. Later instead of feeling content with our achievements, we live with regrets because just maybe we might have succeeded.
            What have you been putting off lately? What do you think you could do to help reach your goal? Let’s discuss it here.

Ben Johnson was hired as a bodyguard for a rich widow and her kid, but he never expected to be working for the woman who had abandoned him just when he had needed her the most. Damn it all, he still wanted her. Samantha Chaunce never thought she would have to explain why she married the rich man instead of Ben. Or that her husband had been murdered…and Ben was the prime suspect.


Funny… the things that can trigger a memory.

I had a mouse in the house yesterday. It was a little field mouse. I think he might have come in through the garage, we see them outside all of the time.

He ran across the living room and then doubled back to sit in front of the TV set. Foolish little fellow considering that I have three cats in the house.

My cats did NOTHING – the three of them, they just watched! I really don’t think that they know they are cats.

I went and got a big-mouthed glass and a hard piece of thin cardboard and caught the little critter. He was actually cute. Then I walked him outside and let him go near a storm drain where he could find shelter. I certainly hope he had a safe night.

When I came back into the house I suddenly thought about my childhood friend Donna. When we were kids in grade school our science teacher encouraged us to raise and observe pet mice as a science project. Donna, another mutual friend and I bought three white mice at a pet store. Donna’s mom was cool about it and let us keep the cage with our mice at their house. (The other two moms were not so thrilled about having mice in the house.)

The mice were fun to watch and play with and the three of us took serious notes on the behavior for class. They became more pets than just a school project. Several weeks into the project the mice got out of the cage (I think one of D’s brothers left the cage door open). We never saw the mice again… I hope they made a break for the outside and got away, we never could get a straight answer from the little brothers.

I thought of Donna, she died a few years ago in a car accident. I miss her. Funny that a little field mouse would make me think of her. I miss her, but I didn’t feel like crying. I thought of the fun times we had and I chuckled at some of the mischief we got into. This little mouse actually made me happy.

The unexpected trip down memory lane made me think of how I have used memory flashbacks in my writing.

I thought of Tom Hughes, the hero of Within the Law. Tom has many poignant moments when he remembers the past – like the time he found his cousin after she ran away from home, the last time he saw his high school sweetheart before she died, or his memories of a brief love affair with the woman who taught him to love again. What triggered his memories? How did those memories affect the man he had become?

I’ve used flashbacks in other stories too, such as with Samantha Chaunce in A Chaunce of Riches. She had memories of Ben, a man she thought she would never have to see again after she left him in his hour of need. Sam had tried to suppress those memories along with the love she still had for him. Seeing him again and hearing his voice haunted her with those agonizing memories and all that she had given up.

Many things can trigger a memory and our minds wander. Sometimes the nostalgia brings us laughter and sometimes it brings us tears. A favorite cooking aroma, a perfume, a photo, a song we once danced to – they all seem to have the power to reach back into our subconscience and bring the memory to the forefront.

But a mouse on my living room carpet, that’s a first.

Without a Voice

After catching a bad upper respiratory infection (aka the common cold) I developed a severe case of laryngitis. This is not the scratchy throat and sound like a frog kind of affliction, this is total loss of voice – I cannot even grunt! I’ve been like this since last Sunday and while my husband is pretty much overjoyed, my doctor says I need to rest my larynx. Believe it or not even whispering puts a strain on the voicebox I have been unable to speak for the better part of a week and it’s been very frustrating.

An almost full week of silence got me thinking of women who are denied the opportunity to voice themselves. Some of the female characters I’ve included in my books have been denied the right to speak for themselves for one reason or another. In Bartlett’s Rule Paige was denied the right to say “No” when an ex-boyfriend viciously attacked her; In A Chaunce of Riches Samantha was blackmailed into silence about who she really loved; and in Hyphema Seudah was raised a Muslim Pakistani woman in a place where some women are still forced to hide behind veils and are not allowed to talk for fear of offending the men.

Although the things I’ve been able to do have been seriously curtailed without having a voice, I’ve been lucky to have friends and family who have been patient and willing to interpret hand signals, read hastily scribbled notes and crane to listen to a few whispered words. My silence has lasted a week and I have reasonable expectation of once again being able to talk for myself, hopefully soon. But what of those women who live lifetimes without the ability to say what is on their minds, to voice their feelings, to be heard and be allowed to matter.

This past week has given me a mere glimpse into their frustration. It is difficult to tell folks your needs when you can’t speak. In the United States the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution was signed, recognizing women’s right to vote on August 26, 1920. There has been progress worldwide over the right of women to have voices about family, religion, politics and health. But there are still lands and social situations where women are not afforded the right to have a say. This is a subject that should concerns us all; when human rights are denied to any person(s) it is an affront to us all.

Read up on women’s issues at these sites:

http://www.now.org/ National Organization for Women (NOW)

http://www.un.org/womenwatch/ Womenwatch: A United Nations project

http://www.wedo.org/ Women’s Environment and Development Organization

http://www.hrw.org/home Human Rights Watch

Have you had your Expresso today?

Such exciting news!

Folks can walk into any location with the fun to watch EBM, call up a favorite title, and walk out five minutes later with their very own copy – it’s instant gratification!

What’s an EBM?   Expresso Book Machine

Now what this means for you, dear readers, is that you can walk into a location and walk out that same day with a fully printed book in hand!   Not ordered and wait – but you can start reading immediately.  Formerly this instant gratification was only available at a very few select mortar and brick stores – or for ebook purchasers… and there are still some purests out there who enjoy the feeling of a book in their hands.

And there are NO shipping charges – how much better can this get?   Even overseas readers can enjoy print copies of books WITHOUT those exorbitant shipping charges.

There are dozens of these machines already out there ALL OVER THE WORLD – and they are expecting that amount to more than double by the end of 2012.

Right now you can find EBMs in the following countries:
United States of America
Santo Domingo
United Arab Emirates

… and there are MORE coming!  For a complete listing of locations AND books available go here  http://bit.ly/JtiIpm 

Read the brochure here   http://bit.ly/NQOikO

Living on the edge

Heroes and heroines in romantic suspense stories seem to always live on “the edge”, flirting with danger and taking chances.

Sometimes the “chances” they take are putting off doing things they should be doing earlier, like sharing a truth, saying I’m sorry, or saying I love you.
In His Lucky Charm, Brandon nearly loses Caitlyn when he fails to tell her of the double life he leads… and then she finds out. In A Chaunce of Riches, Ben is too stubborn and hurt to tell Sam that he still loves her… and then it appears he may have lost her forever. And in Bartlett’s Rule, Paige feels that she needs time to work things out by herself… and then worries that she has missed her chance for Lon to want to spend his life with her.
People procrastinate for a variety of reasons. Every year we hear of last minute gift shoppers hitting the stores the afternoon of Christmas Eve! And every year we hear hair-raising stories of folks sending out their tax returns in the “eleventh hour” and looking for those elusive post offices that are still open until midnight – Yikes! (btw, electronic submission is so very easy)
Here’s a good article for last minute filers:
So, have YOU filed yet or is this your way of living on the edge?
Tell me about it, leave your comments below.

How to make a gal feel special

I guess it’s because I write about romance, or maybe it’s not that complicated and simply because I’m a “mom figure”… I was recently asked by a young man how he could get a certain young lady’s attention (young adults, not teens)

I thought for a few minutes, I remembered the way my dad treated my mom, the way my husband treats me and then, lol, I thought about the ways my novel heroes treat the heroines. Not surprisingly my heroes tend to emulate a lot of the romantic gestures of good and great relationships I’ve been privileged to witness.

I told him not to be pushy. If she isn’t ready for a serious relationship it might scare her off. I did tell him to make sure that he knew her, really knew her, but to be subtle about it. Acknowledge who she is and encourage her personal identity. He has to share his likes and dislikes, but he shouldn’t expect her to always agree. I said just be a constant and let her know she is appreciated.

In my novel Within the Law, Tom notices the glass miniature figurine collection in Allie’s apartment. Later in the story when he wants to get her flowers, he gives her crystal roses and other flowers. She’s touched that he remembered this about her even though they never discussed it.

In A Chaunce of Riches, even though it’s been years since they were together, Ben surprises Samantha when he remembers her favorite drink and prepares it for her after an extra long day at work. Even though she moved on without him, he still lets her know he admires where she’s gotten to educationally and in business.

It’s just touches here and there, little things a guy does to make a woman feel special, one of a kind, and important. Like all the times my dad introduced my mom as his queen… And like all the times my husband brags about his romance author wife even though he is not a fan of romance novels himself.

Make a woman feel special, that’s how you get her attention.

New version – UPDATED 2011 Sampler

Fall 2011 Chelle Cordero Sampler

Fall 2011 Chelle Cordero Sampler
By: Chelle Cordero | Other books by Chelle Cordero

Published By: Vanilla Heart Publishing

ISBN # 9781937227791

Word Count: 118500

Available in: Adobe Acrobat

Read More

About the book

This Chelle Cordero sampler is free for your enjoyment. All of Chelle’s novels are available in both print and ebook editions for every reading device, through online retailers and in select bookstores around the world. Chelle’s writing workshop, Living, Breathing, Writing: A Lesson A Day is available in both print and ebook for Volume 1, and Volume 2 in ebook.

Bartlett’s Rule

Bartlett’s Rule shares the story of Lon and Paige’s love affair; a romance filled with hardship, emotion, danger and triumph. Falling in love was never the challenge; being there for each other, knowing just what to say and making it work is the real test. Paige and Lon are real; they are human, they cry and they laugh. Paige has to learn to trust. Lon has to learn to be patient.


Hyphema: Bleeding in the eye caused by trauma… Matt Garratti, a paramedic from New York, moves his wife and son to North Carolina to work at his dream job as a flight medic. Pakistani born Sudah, his wife, receives frosty stares and insensitive comments from their new neighbors… Matt wonders if he is pursuing his dream or bringing his family into a nightmare from which they may never wake.

Final Sin

Deputy Sherriff Commander Jake Carson has his hands full… investigation of a brutal multiple homicide, a troubled son and a vindictive ex-wife. He meets young, free-spirited paramedic Julie Jennings. When Julie becomes the subject of an obsession, it puts both of them in danger…

His Lucky Charm

What happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay in Vegas… this time it follows Brandon and Caitlyn across the country and into a world of espionage and danger. The one thing that Brandon knows for sure is that he can’t afford to lose his lucky charm, Caitlyn.

Common Bond, Tangled Hearts

Layne Gillette’s world is turned upside down when a man she has never met shows up to lay claim as the father of her 6-year old son. When Layne’s abusive “ex-husband” shows up, they are torn apart by danger, kidnapping and lies.

A Chaunce of Riches

Ben Johnson was hired as a bodyguard for a rich widow and her kid, but he never expected to be working for the woman who had abandoned him just when he had needed her the most. Damn it all, he still wanted her. Samantha Chaunce never thought she would have to explain why she married the rich man instead of Ben. Or that her husband had been murdered…and Ben was the prime suspect.

Hostage Heart

Life was hard after the hurricanes swept through, destroying her parents’ home and livelihood… An errand for her boss – a chance encounter with a crew of bank robbers – a kind man who tried to help her … a man who isn’t all he seems…no, he is so much more.

Courage of the Heart

Courage of the Heart shows us that sometimes love is the only cure for the very deepest of emotional wounds. The story of the two lovers takes a series of unexpected and fast paced turns where lives, sanity and love are put in jeopardy. Their commitment to one another results in a spirit that binds them together and helps them to overcome physical and emotional dangers.

Within the Law

Tom gave up on ever falling in love again the day that he buried his high school sweetheart and fiancé. He started a career in law enforcement just so that he could find her murderer and rapist. Just when he is about to see justice done, he meets Alli Davis-the defense attorney for the murdering rapist who took his love from him.