Good morning everyone!  I'm very pleased to bring a friend to the blog today.  Megan has her book, Anchor Me out today.  I was lucky enough to be a part of this book's development, and Megan has a natural gift with writing.

Anchor Me
Contemporary Romance

Jillian Banner is adrift.

Her brother, Gabe, had been her anchor since she was 13. But now he’s dead, leaving behind a pregnant fiancée and a business under investigation by the IRS. She is alone, having left the only man she ever loved under a haze of betrayal.

Mark Chambers spent the summer trying to get over the loss of Jillian. Now that he also lost his best friend, Gabe, he’s barely keeping it together. He never betrayed Jillian, but he can’t tell her the truth, even if it was all for her. He made promises, and those promises go beyond the grave.

In mourning, Mark and Jillian tentatively restart a relationship, throwing their support behind the mother of Gabe’s child. As the owner of an aquatic store, Jillian takes on her hardest challenge yet, helping a business partner sell captive-bred seahorses.

But just when Jillian begins to trust Mark again, she finds the men in her life built walls of lies to protect her. To stay afloat, Jillian has to learn what she wants, what she needs and how to be her own anchor.

I asked Megan to put together a blog post for today.  Here's a bit about her inspiration.

I read Tiffany Reisz's The Siren this year, and one of the characters, a ruthless book editor, says, Don't write what you know, write what you want to know."

As a writer, I'm so fascinated by that line. Because in all my creative writing courses in high school and college, I've always been told to "write what I know." But when I really think about it, isn't that kind of boring? I don't want to sit down and write a bunch of words that are already in my head, words that I already know. I want to create. I want to let my characters do their thing and decide my plot for me.

The idea for Anchor Me came years ago when my brother and his wife announced she was pregnant with their first child. At the time, I had no children myself and I was so stoked for a niece or nephew. But, my mind trailed in the next couple months, and I began to think of the "What ifs." What if something happened to his wife, or his child, or HIM? The thing is, I didn't know. I had no idea what would happen. But I thought it'd be interesting to explore it, and that was the seed from which Anchor Me grew. 

Of course, I drew from my own experiences. The main theme of the novel is that we all have an "inner seahorse," which is the hippocampus in our brain. The hippocampus is named after seahorses, because of its shape, and is responsible for our sense of direction. The main character, Jillian Banner, owns an aquatic store. I worked for years in a pet store and have maintained my own home aquariums. So, while I definitely drew on "what I knew," I never raised seahorses. I had to research them extensively, which I found really rewarding and fun.

As for the relationships in the book, I drew from my own experiences, as a wife, sister, friend. But it took a lot of soul-searching to explore how those relationships would alter if tragedies that occurred in my book happened in real life.

Overall, I learned a lot from writing this book. Of course, I learned about the writing craft itself, but I also learned a lot about myself. And as a writer, that was one of the most rewarding things to me. 

I'm currently working on a New Adult series now, and that Tiffany Reisz quote is constantly in the back of my mind, whispering, making me push myself not to fall back on what I know, but instead, to write what I want to know.

Let's take a peek at Anchor Me!


Jillian muttered a farewell. Mark exhaled, and she finally raised her eyes. He looked at her steadily, and she quickly darted her gaze away, searching for something to do to keep her mind busy. Ah yes, algae scraping the 220. Clearing her throat, she eased out from behind the counter and grabbed the algae magnets. She plunged one into the water on the inside of the tank and caught it with its match on the outside. Slowly, she moved her hand across the glass, taking the magnets with her.

“Hey,” he said quietly to her back. “Sorry to just show up. Didn’t think you’d take my calls…” Mark’s deep voice trailed off. That voice. His voice.

She closed her eyes, and when she opened them, she looked at him. His dark brown eyes looked almost black, reflecting the dark shapes in the water. He wore the expressionless mask he was so good at donning.

“You could have just sent a card. Or flowers,” Jillian said quietly. The fog in her head became thicker, and she felt light-headed. She struggled to think when she’d last eaten. She faltered and put her other hand on the tank to brace herself.

He moved toward her with his hand out. It was probably just a gut reaction on his part, but she instinctively took a step away, and he stopped abruptly. Hurt flashed in his eyes. He glanced at his hand—stretched out to touch her? Catch her? He pulled it back and scratched the side of his head over his ear, ruffling thick, dark brown hair out of place.

That hair. His hair.

He steeled himself and hardened his face. The muscles in his jaw twitched with restrained irritation. “I wanted you to know I am really sorry about Gabe. I honestly can’t believe it happened and…I’m really torn up about it.”

Jillian’s ears burned with heat, and she knew her forked tongue was next. “Well, I’m so sorry to hear you are taking this so hard,” she snarled through clenched teeth. The sting of tears threatened as they always did when her anger rose, but she knew none would fall.

He sucked in a breath, and then he spoke slowly, his voice thick. “That’s not fair.”

She remained silent.

He took a deep breath. “This isn’t…I didn’t know…You know what, sorry. I thought coming here and offering my condolences was the right thing to do. But apparently not. Fuck it.” He held up his hands and began to walk toward the front door.

His words slashed at her. He only swore when he was angry, and any extreme emotion was rare for him. Her heart ached, and she knew she should say something. She wanted to, but her voice caught in her throat. She pulled away the magnet. The one inside the tank plunked down into the gravel. Grit swirled up from where it landed.

She turned to face the front door and opened her mouth in the same instant Mark whirled around and opened his.


“You know—”

They both stopped and stared.

Available on Amazon for Kindle and in paperback.  BUY HERE!

About the Author:

Megan began writing stories as soon as she learned how, and her first tales were of her childhood pet -- a deaf cat with dandruff. She thinks it's safe to say her writing and subject matter have come a long way since then. After covering real-life dramas as a journalist in college and her early 20s, she decided she liked writing her own endings better and switched to fiction.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, son and two cats. When she's not tapping away on her laptop, she's probably listening to the characters in her head who just.won't.shut.up.

For more, visit her website or follow her on twitter @_meganerickson


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