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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Set the Scene in Six Sentences Sunday - Share the Six!

One of the finest aspects of fiction writing is the ability to set the scene.  Characters act and react, but they don't do so in a vacuum.  In their world, they meet, fall in love, solve problems, sometimes horrendous problems.  Maybe it's a small town, maybe the big city, the green, humid jungle, dust-dry desert, a mountainous region.  On the sea.  Under the sea.  In space! 

Setting the scene sets up the unexpected. It's also done by using character dialogue to paint a picture of loveliness, danger, evil, trepidation, excitement, awe...

Give us six sentences that set the scene.  Set the Scene in Six Sentences - Sunday is a new opportunity on the Exquisite Quills Blog to tout your talent.  How have you set the scene or the lead-up in your books?  How have you put the reader into the life of your characters?

Every Sunday, the blog will be open to six-sentence scene-setting.  Just post your six sentences, your name, and one link in the comment box.  We can't wait to read you!

Pass the word!  Open to all!


Afton Locke said...

This is a scene from Stripper With Spice, available now at Ellora's Cave:

I stay where I am but gaze around the room, noticing with approval how neat he is.
It doesn’t take long for my attention to stumble across the centerpiece of the room, the large bed.
Is it another stage?
Is the perfectly pressed red cover the curtain?
Unlike the platforms we shared for the photo shoot and lap dance, this one is completely private.
What if he doesn’t like my performance?

Buy eBook Link:
Blog Tour:
Book Trailer:

Afton Locke
Unlock your fantasies…

Rosemary Gemmell said...

From short novella The Aphrodite Touch by Romy Gemmell (1st in series set on Cyprus) - where Aphrodite and Adonis 'help' human lovers who visit the island!

“They are a handsome pair, Adonis. Perhaps we might enjoy a small flirtation with them before they leave the island.” She smiled into his eyes, knowing he took little persuasion. “We should take a swim tomorrow.”

“So long as we are careful with their fragile human feelings. We must ensure they deepen their love for each other.” He crooked a finger under her chin and tilted her face up.

Available from Amazon: and in all e-formats from Tirgearr Publishing:

Rose Anderson said...

My scene comes from Enchanted Skye -- a hidden identity, an ancient charm, a dark obsession, and a Selkie. What will Jenna do? Here she has an annoying encounter after a particularly emotional day.
“You might wait a bit, they’re sure t’ be walking back downstairs in a moment.”

The door slammed and she whirled to the voice behind her. The towel, only half covering her to begin with, closed in the door.
Too late, she must have realized she stood wearing nothing but an astonished expression, for she groped quickly for the towel and the doorknob. Temporarily thunderstruck from the moment she’d turned in all her glory, her frantic yanking of the doorknob jolted him awake.
Alex chuckled, “Easy love, that latch is auld and loose and were you to pull harder, it might fall into the wrong place and ye don't want us locked in this room."
Rose Anderson

James D said...

This is from the first book of my Dream Series, "Dream Student." My heroine, Sara, is being kept up by bizarre nightmares that she doesn't (yet) understand...

It’s almost twelve-thirty in the morning and I’m not asleep. I was staring at the poster of Daffy Duck over Beth’s bed, but I gave that up a few minutes ago. I thought he was staring back at me. I’ve got a print of Monet’s Water Lilies over my bed and now I half think they’re staring at me, too.

I realize that’s not good. It’s pretty far from good, actually.

Available at Amazon: (kindle, print AND audiobook!)

Andrea Cooper said...

Here's one of my many WIP, Descent into Darkness. The heroine is a vampire with amnesia. Her husband and lover has been taken.
I woke to darkness and a copper taste upon my tongue. I lifted my hand to rub my face and hit something solid an inch above me. Where was I? Encased somehow, I pounded upon the silken covered wood above me, and kicked with my feet, but nothing happened. No matter how I punched and kicked, I could not break free.
“Help me,” I yelled and added pounding of my fists to my words.

Andrea R. Cooper

Susan Macatee said...

Next six sentences from time travel romance, Thoroughly Modern Amanda.

Her heavy skirts swished along the hardwood floor as she paced, her eye on the office door.

I should just leave and allow him to wonder where I am.

She stepped toward the door, her hand outstretched, but thought better of it. If she wasn’t here when he arrived, he might accuse her of slacking and send her home.

She’d first met Randolph at the home of one of her father’s associates during a dinner party. His stories of working as a supervising editor for the weekly paper intrigued her.

Hannah Meredith said...

Joshua stopped his horse at the top of the rise. His estate, Harkley, spread out before him. This was the picture he’d brought to mind throughout the blood and chaos of war, but in his memory the sun had been shining, making the stones of the house a soft yellow in contrast to the brilliant green of the fields. On a rainy October afternoon, the scene was leached of color and appeared as a study in grays and browns. Joshua shrugged and put the horse into motion. He’d long ago discovered that this was the difference between dreams and reality.

This is from my currently available novella, KESTREL. ( ) Here ,Joshua, Lord Trent, returns home from the Peninsular War. He hopes to make amends to a wife he’s grievously wronged. I attempted to set the scene both visually and emotionally.

Thanks for letting me stop by.


Janet Mullany said...

This is from my enovella Reader, I Married Him, an erotic tribute to Jane Eyre. Kindle:

The naked man shackled to the opposite wall seemed a figure from earlier, barbaric times, heavy stubble on his chin and his wild hair reaching to his shoulders. Jane stood before him, her cloak discarded on the floor, wearing a virginal white nightgown, its plain muslin relieved only by a touch of lace at wrists and neck.

“So, Edward, are you ready for me?”

“Ah, Jane, you cruel woman. Won't you let me go?”

The words had a ritualistic quality to Diana's ears, as though once he had spoken them in earnest, but now they were part of a game.

Adele Downs said...

New Release! KISSING HER COWBOY by Adele Downs
Boroughs Publishing Group

Scene One

Treymont Woods kicked up dust on his boots as he sauntered from the stables toward the woman who just had to be his new riding student. Her flaming red hair swooshed from one side of her shoulders to the other as she watched his stallion, Big Blue, canter inside the corral. Her hands clutched the fence, knuckles white, and every muscle in her tall, slim figure looked tense.

Before he could get to her, she pivoted toward the parking area, feet moving like she was fixin’ to run.

By the time he reached the woman’s side, Trey could hear her breathing like she’d raced a Texas mile. Before he could introduce himself, she turned with wide green eyes and shouted, “He’s huge!”

For more information at Amazon:

Karen McCullough said...

Here's a quick one, the opening paragraph from my mystery with romantic elements, A Gift for Murder. More info, blurb buy links, excerpt etc. at

If I’d known how bad Wednesday would get, I would’ve—what? Stayed in bed? Not likely. The show must go on and all that. But I would’ve at least asked for another shot of espresso during my morning stop at Starbucks. Maybe two.

Sandy said...

This is the villain, a serial killer, in the second book of my Riverboat Mysteries trilogy, Addiction.

Already starting to feel better because soon he'd be free of her, he picked up a driver's license, gazing at the picture of the woman who stared back at him. Five-foot four-inches with brown hair and eyes, she had the same coloring and height as his mother. Sorting through them, he laid them side by side, all ten of them in the order of their death.

The first he lifted to look at closer. She hadn't looked like this pretty woman when she died. His mother's hair had turned permanently gray, and the alcohol had made deep inroads in her face.

Sandra K. Marshall

Martha O'Sullivan said...

This is a scene from Second Chance, book #1 of the Chances trilogy by Martha O’Sullivan. All three books are set in Lake Tahoe and San Francisco. Second Chance is a sweet and steamy reunion romance about taking the chance your heart wants you to take. And then realizing you didn’t have a choice at all. Please visit my web site at for excerpts, links and more.

The lake shone like a sheet of sapphire glass under the ambient blue sky, its silky waves swishing concertedly against the fawn-colored strand. Suntan lotion and sweet pine laced the breeze and Brian could taste summer in the air as he walked down to the shore and crossed to the neighboring beach.

Then he saw her.

He looked on as she crouched at the shore, halfheartedly searching for something in the coarse sand. After a few moments of running her hands through it, she brushed them off and stood. Instantly, the quicksilver of Brian’s heartbeat spread to his cock and ignited.

B.J. McCall said...

Fire Angel by B.J. McCall

My scene is from my paranormal book, Fire Angel. Colin is having a brush with the supernatural. Every man needs a unique woman to light up his life.

Colin Callahan’s flashlight barely penetrated the dark haze of thick black smoke in the burning house. The flames shooting up the stairwell reminded him of last week’s fire. Even through his protec- tive clothing, he felt the searing heat.
He came upon a door and yanked it open. Colin’s hopes were quickly dashed as the beam of his flashlight slid over the empty tub. He turned and saw a light moving in the thick haze.

Available at Amazon

Michele Drier said...

SNAP: Happily Ever After?
Michele Drier

In this scene, Maxie reunites with her vampire lover, Jean-Louis in Kiev.

I stopped. He was helping me. Sort of. He managed to pull the tee over my head, which trapped my arms, and began kissing and slowly licking my breasts, working his way down my body. The bed shifted and I heard sounds of clothing coming off, the soft snick of buttons and the hiss of a zipper. As tangled as I was in the tee, I hadn’t managed to get an arm free before I felt the length of his naked body against mine.

J.D. Faver said...

This is a little something from A SANDCASTLE CHRISTMAS, where Rafael and Chloe are stepping onto the marina to climb on the Christmas boat parade.

He turned around, shielding her from the cold wind coming off the bay. The mercury-vapor lights came sizzling on all along the pier, bathing them in an other worldly aura. Chloe’s blonde hair turned to silver and her blue eyes were gray. He kissed her lips and then tucked her behind him as he walked rapidly down the pier to where the Fair Weather was moored.
Chloe let out a gasp. “Oh, see how pretty she looks.”
All the lights they had strung up were glowing.
Mack, dressed as Santa Claus, hailed them from the deck. “About time the likes of ye be comin’ along.”
Calvin’s young brother, Uley came out of the cabin, grinning and wearing a striped cap with a long tail on it and a tassel on the end.
Chloe reached up to clasp his hand and he hoisted her aboard. “We had a little delay, but we’re here now.”

Babette James said...

This is from my new spicy contemporary romance, Summertime Dream.

A strange comfort settled over him as he looked out over the unkempt, wild yard to the quiet street…a sense of belonging.
No. He couldn’t go getting attached to this place. He had no need of a rundown monster money pit in the middle of nowhere when his life and business were in California. He needed to focus on sorting the contents and getting the old wreck into saleable condition as soon as possible and return to Los Angeles and normal life.
But sitting with Margie by his side in the cool humid morning, with the birds and the scent of roses, stirred a longing for something...different than what he had in the hustle and heat of Los Angeles.

Available on Kindle:

Pamela Labud said...

Howdy! This is from my current novel, (to be published under my pen name Leigh Curtis)Luke's Destiny, with a tentative release date in March. You can find our more about me at:

Her Pa’s ranch only had two hands left at home since the boys had left on their cattle drive. So, that left her with a heap of responsibilities. It had seemed like a good idea when she’d seen the poster at the general store two weeks earlier about a man who was looking to set down roots. He was asking to for a good woman to start a family with.
Clara was sure that she’d been that woman. So sure, she’d paid his travel expenses, and set aside some money for their wedding ceremony.
Now, if only the groom would turn out agreeable...

M. S. Spencer said...

This is from my romantic suspense/mystery Artful Dodging: the Torpedo Factory Murders. It's Christmas day and Milo is down in the dumps:
The streets were empty as the late afternoon sun glinted feebly through the cold clouds. Milo drove down Prince Street and turned left on St. Asaph’s. ... Parking the car, she walked north through Founder’s Park and along the river. A cheerless mist floated just above the ground. Logs and trash and dirty foam lined the shore. A couple of mallards poked around in the slop with dispirited zeal. She found a bench and dropped on it with a sigh. The tears welled up without warning. Ever since Michael’s death, she’d find herself suddenly crying without cause or purpose. This time, though, she wasn’t thinking about Michael at all. I miss him. I miss Tristram. The revelation stung. I don’t need this. And anyway, I can’t have him.

Find Artful Dodging at
and me at

David Russell said...

From Therapy Rapture

Rowena disrobed magnificently, with all the freshness of novelty and coyness newlyabandoned, half-giggling, half shyly, but getting more of a thrill at every move on zip or button.

My zips and buttons made a delicate harmony with hers. Her sober, dark green consultant’s
outfit came off, then her crisp cream blouse. Now, she stood before me in a clingy black crimped body stocking. She blossomed out of her repressive cocoon. How her breasts had strengthened!

David Russell

Therapy Rapture: David Russell: Books › Books › Poetry, Drama & Criticism › Poetry‎
Therapy Rapture: David Russell: Books.

Danita Minnis said...

This snippet is from my paranormal romance Love Entwined:

She smelled the sea and the wind whipped around them.
A thick, black forelock winged away from his forehead. Full lips turned upward into dimples and moonlight shone in his eyes. “My love.”
She rubbed her nipples into the curls sprinkled across his chest and finally, he lifted her and laid her down on the water’s surface. His body, all hard planes and angles, pushed her down and she wrapped her legs around him atop a swelling wave.
He murmured approval as he cupped her buttocks, lifted her hips and drove into her all in one deft motion.

E. Ayers said...

"I will never hurt you."
For some reason, she believed him. Something inside her quivered from his words. She pulled her scarf over her mouth and nose, and watched the mules. Puffs of steam came from their noses. They wore blankets that had been tied to their bodies with rope, but now those blankets were laden in snow.

From A RANCHER'S WOMAN a historical western novel set in 1895. Times were tough, women had to be strong to survive, and falling in love with an Indian was not only unacceptable, it was illegal.

M. S. Spencer said...

Love the description--leached of color. Great! M.S.

M. S. Spencer said...

Wonderful and intriguing. M. S.

darlene deluca said...

Darlene Deluca: This sets the scene for the conflict between the hero and heroine in my sweet contemporary romance Meetings of Chance:

"Dad, I can't believe you didn't tell me this before."
Trying to stay calm, Megan opened the oven, and peeked at the potatoes baking inside, the heat of the oven matching the rising temperature of her blood.
Her dad seemed in such a fog these days. She wondered, not for the first time, if he needed some grief counseling. He'd basically cleared the way for Tom Blake to obtain a special use permit, and hadn't even bothered to discuss it with her. At this rate, their picturesque farmhouse would end up surrounded by big corporations and absentee land owners.

Hannah Meredith said...

Thanks. I'm glad you liked this description.

Beverly Ovalle said...

Beverly Ovalle: The first time the hero sees the heroine in my erotic short Lightning Strike.

He straightened up. From the tree, he swore from the damaged bark itself, Levi saw a figure fall. He rushed over. He hadn’t seen anyone in the tree, but he hadn’t been paying attention to anything but the deadly beauty of nature. Kneeling, he felt for a pulse. A faint heartbeat reassured him that the young woman was alive.

A Secret Cravings Weekend Getaway

Rose Anderson said...

What a terrific assemblage of scene-setting! Thanks for playing along everyone. Come back Wednesday with a kiss!

Have a great week.