And here’s where the magic happens…

Happy Saturday everyone!!!

Thought I’d share my writing place with you today, the place where the ‘magic’ happens. Not the Harry Potter kind of magic but the writing magic! My writing place is where I’m sitting right now, tapping away on my laptop, trying to complete my current WIP!

We don’t have the room for a study or even a desk, so I write in this chair in my lounge. It’s comfortable and means that I get to sit with my family and the dogs while I write. If they’re being noisy or the TV is on, I just plug in my headphones and listen to some good writing tunes. Occasionally, I write in bed or at the kitchen table but I’m usually found in the lounge. Next to the chair is the footstool which currently holds my note pads. I always have at least three or four full of story ideas, character notes and other reminders.

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Where do you read or write? Do you find it difficult to get the time and the peace to do either?

©Depositphotos/ konradbak

©Depositphotos/ konradbak


(And this is for inspirational purposes, of course!)

Hugs!
Molly xxx

Christmas Reads – Wicked Wonderland by Lisa Whitefern

Today I’m interviewing my good friend Lisa Whitefern. Her smoking hot Christmas novel Wicked Wonderland is an erotic romance and a paranormal ménage. Although Wicked Wonderland has been available in ebook format since last Christmas, it has just recently been released in print.

Wicked Wonderland Greatest Banner Ever1

Hi Lisa – Who or what inspires you?
Tim Gunn from Project Runway and Eminem (is that weird?)
These are two people who take the whole “follow your bliss, follow your dream” thing into really new creative directions. Sure, Eminem’s pretty negative at times, but other songs like Loose Yourself , Beautiful, Till I Collapse are inspiring in a positive way.
Struggling to portray my vision regarding Wicked Wonderland I kept saying to myself “make it work”. I sent the novel out to the 5 best publishers I knew of that accepted unsolicted manuscripts, and to my amazement I had three contract offers. Thanks Tim Gunn.

Give us an interesting fun fact about your book.
If you were a child of the ‘70s you’ll remember a time when there were no DVDs to watch at home, so if there was something special on TV it was more exciting than it would ever be in this day and age.
How excited my little sister and I were by all those animated Christmas movies full of magic and wonder that only came on TV on Christmas Eve. I wanted to bring this kind of magic to a tale of erotic romance.

Who is your intended audience and why should they read your book?
The three goals I had for Wicked Wonderland were to write a magical paranormal Christmas story, an emotional romance between 3 people in a ménage, and an erotic story hot enough to jingle sleigh bells and curl your mistletoe. It is a novel for people who love sex, romance magic, fairy tales and Christmas.

It certainly is Lisa! I’ve read it and LOVED it!!!

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Wicked Wonderland is in a sense, a retelling of Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, except instead of Santa the heroine meets two very sexy half-fae men who take her on a magical sleigh ride around the world.
The message is similar to the message of the Christmas carol Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. It’s a story of outcast triumph.

How did you come up with the title of your book or series?
I wanted something magical that would also hint at eroticism and Christmas.

Are you a member of any writing organizations and, if so, have they helped?
I am a member of the Romance Writers of New Zealand which has been very helpful. In 2014 I have been invited to speak on Writing Erotic Romance at Casino Royale the RWNZ 2014 conf.

Wow! That sounds so exciting!!! Wish I could be there. 🙂

Wicked Wonderland big

BOOK BLURB
It’s a lovely night for a sleigh ride— until something evil takes the reins.

When Nick and Kris, the half-fae sons of human mothers, aren’t using Santa’s sleigh in the off-season to make deliveries for their booming sex toy business, they’re setting off sensual fireworks in the bedroom.

Yet they dream of a feminine third to complete their lives. There’s only one woman they can picture filling that role: Lilly, the girl they both dated in college.

Lilly thought earning extra money stripping was a good plan, until she’s left battered, bruised, and stuffed in a back-alley trash can. Her rescuers turn out to be the dark, brooding dom and the golden-haired sub whose faces—and shockingly entwined bodies—are still the stuff of her most searing fantasies.

While she’s more than willing to take them up on their offer of one perfect night of magic, she questions whether anyone can break into Nick and Kris’s powerful bond. But there’s someone who’s been waiting for this moment all Lilly’s life. An evil psychopath who holds the secrets of her past—unless Nick and Kris can unravel them in time to save her from a fate worse than death.

Product Warnings
Explicit ménage a trois, hot m/f/m scenes, hot male/male scenes, a ruthless stalker who torments the heroine, sex toys, sex on roof tops, spankings, BDSM, Dark Fae, birdmen, orphans, strippers, centaurs, a violent battle between good and evil creatures on board a ship, true love, and sex in Santa’s sleigh.

Excerpt
The icy December winds whipped around them, stinging Lilly’s face, but the night sky was clear and full of stars. The cold bit through her flimsy costume, and her teeth chattered audibly. Sonya stopped by the trash cans, holding Lilly tightly around the waist from behind. Kandy grabbed hold of the chiffon on the front of her angel costume. Lilly shook and twisted violently to try to break their grasp, and part of her angel costume tore. “Let go of me, you assholes!” She jabbed backward with her elbow, connecting with Sonya’s stomach, and heard the taller stripper gasp with momentary pain, but unfortunately, Sonya didn’t loosen her hold. “Oooooh! Rudolph’ll pay double for that!” Kandy exclaimed.
Lilly didn’t know why she did it. Maybe it was a way of dissociating from a horrible situation, maybe it was because her heart always ached to make music when she was in pain, but she began to hum, the sound starting low in her throat. She closed her eyes and played a flute in her head, filling her mind with a rich and clear melody, which, for a moment, took her right out of her nasty situation. Then a vicious pinch froze the sound in her lungs. Lilly twisted around enough to look up at Sonya. Something frightening had happened to Sonya’s face. It became very still, and the stripper’s eyes narrowed into slits that showed too much amber and almost no pupil, like the eyes of a snake or some other reptile. A sharp chill ran up Lilly’s spine.
“Don’t fucking hum.” Sonya spat out the words.
“Who cares if she hums? She’s just a weirdo,” Bambi interrupted. “I don’t care what she does as long as she doesn’t take our money again.” The words of the other stripper somehow returned everything to relative normality.
I must have been imaging the whole thing. Must have been the cold messing with my brain.
“You steal our tips, Rudolph, and I’ll give you a red nose, all right.” Sonya’s voice seemed inhuman in its rage. Fear swelled around Lilly like a choking fog. The tall stripper swung Lilly around like a toy, then pulled her fist back. Before Lilly could react, the fist connected with her nose. Shooting pain accompanied a sickening crack. Blood ran down her throat, tasting like metal, and all she could see was an ocean of red.
“Enjoy, Dumpster Girl!” Sonya tipped her upside down and slammed her headfirst into an empty trash can.
“Remember, Rudolph, you’ll never fit in anywhere. You’ll always be an outcast left out of all the reindeer games.” The other strippers convulsed with laughter.

MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lisa

How can my readers buy your book?

Readers can go directly to the publisher:
Ebook
Print

You can find more information about Lisa Whitefern and her book at:
Website
Twitter
Facebook
Amazon Author Page
Pinterest

Thank you so much for visiting, Lisa! Happy sales and Merry Christmas!!!
Hugs!
Molly xxx

September Celebrations!!!

I’m celebrating this September as Desire in Deadwood is now on general release! I’m extremely excited but also a bit apprehensive. I mean, I have a novella out there on sale…WOO HOO!!!…but what if it doesn’t sell…or…No! I won’t dwell on the negative ‘what ifs’ because even if it only sells one copy and has one good review (it has had a few good ones already – hee hee!) then that is one more than I had this time last year. I’m trying out this attitude of gratitude and it’s feeling pretty good…in fact, as Larry David would say…prett-ay, prett-ay, prett-ay, pretty good!!!

As part of the promo for DID, I did a guest blog post at Butterfly Corsets about Why We Love the Corset. Why not head on over and comment and whilst you’re there, check out the lingerie because it is gorgeous!!!

So, what exactly is Desire in Deadwood about and where did it come from? Well, my lowest point as an aspiring author came just before Christmas last year when a Regency I’d submitted as an R&R was rejected and I felt like throwing in the towel once again. (How many authors have had that feeling? The vast majority I’m guessing!)

But guess what? I didn’t.

A dear friend of mine Carole Remy did a thorough critique of it and told me what the issues were but also what she loved about it. It was a steep but invaluable learning curve and it increased my determination.

Then, for Christmas last year my gorgeous husband bought me a cover for my Kindle. It’s designed to look like a Victorian book cover and it has my name inscribed on the spine. On the inside front cover is a message which reads: This is your first book cover of many. You will be published!

With support and encouragement like that, how could I fail to keep going?

Post-Christmas, a few lines just popped into my head and kept playing over and over:
“Take your clothes off.”
“What?”
“You heard me.”
Evelyn forced her mouth shut.
“So? What are you waiting for?”
Her eyes met those of the man on the moth eaten chaise longue in front of her. He was serious.

Within days, these evolved into a full plot and Desire in Deadwood was born!

I wrote it in a week and submitted it to Total-E-Bound. A lovely editor came back to me with an offer to contract and that, as they say, was that!

Here’s the postcard for the novel designed by the amazing cover art team at Total-E-Bound.

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So, as part of my celebrations, I’m giving away a free ebook copy of Desire in Deadwood to the first person to comment here! Come on, tell me what you think!

Molly xxx

Review of Ann Lethbridge’s ‘Her Highland Protector’

Her Highland Protector (The Gilvrys Of Dunros, #2)Her Highland Protector by Ann Lethbridge
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The story of Niall Gilvry and Lady Jenna Aleyne kicks off with action and it doesn’t stop until the final page. It is exciting, passionate, romantic and addictive.
Lady Jenna is an absolutely delightful heroine! She is brave, beautiful, fiery and sensual – a real Scottish pixie – whilst Niall is honourable, strong, sensitive and brave. Add to this his secret vulnerability and he becomes even more attractive.
The love between Jenna and Niall sparks and then grows into full bloom alongside a plot that twists and turns with gripping pace. Ms Lethbridge creates a vivid picture of another time with the setting, customs and historical details that she finely weaves into the story. Jenna and Niall are restricted by the conventions of their society, as well as their own internal conflicts, so their blossoming love and desire causes heartrending conflict for them both, as well as for the reader.
My favourite character had to be the gypsy Sean, who turns up when least expected and often at the times when he’s needed most. He has an air of mystery about him which leaves the reader wondering if he really does have some paranormal intuition or if he’s just a wily wanderer.
I absolutely loved this novel! Niall is the third Gilvry son, which means that I can now indulge myself by reading about his brothers.:-) 

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LOVE

What is love? Why does it make us do things we wouldn’t normally do? Why does it feel so good at times yet sometimes feel so bad? Why do we like to read about it, hear about it and discuss it? Why is it the topic of so many novels, magazines, movies and chat shows?

©Depositphotos.com/Julos

©Depositphotos.com/Julos

Love comes in many forms but my focus in this post is romantic love: the love between a man and a woman; a man and a man or a woman and a woman. It can occur at any age and at any stage of your life but when it does, boy does it have an overwhelming effect!

I wanted to write about romantic love today because as a romance writer, it’s such an important topic. My debut novella Desire in Deadwood will be released on 30th August with Total-E-Bound Erotic Romance EBooks and as it’s an erotic romance, its central theme is, of course, love. The sensuality of the novel is highly important but it is wound around the relationship and the passionate love that exists between my main characters: Evelyn and Nate.

©Depositphotos/Clip Art Guy

©Depositphotos/Clip Art Guy

Now, the practical voices out there will no doubt state that love is often confused with lust and yes, I agree that this is true. However, what intrigues me is where the line between the two is drawn and how exactly do you know the difference? Obviously, when you’re immersed in the euphoria of love or lust yourself, it’s very difficult to be objective. Others around you may shake their heads and try to tell you that it’s hormones and desire, all down to physical attraction, but how do they know? Who really knows? And if that’s the case, then how come lots of people are still madly attracted to the partners they love deeply and who they’ve been with for years? Also, how do you quantify love? I don’t think that you can.

When you fall in love it mystifies, overpowers and consumes and this is what authors want to convey to readers of romance novels. Without love, as a concept and as an emotion, there would be no romance novels. Love is integral to any romance plot and each romance author wants to take the reader on a journey with the main characters so that they can see this love emerge, develop and end happily ever after. It is not to be easily won, though! There must be conflict before the HEA but this makes it all the sweeter. The journey is just as important as the destination.

Important to remember, however, is that love is not just the remit of the young and that love and passion do not necessarily fade. I remember my own Granny and Grandpa being madly in love in their seventies and I know other couples of a similar age who really couldn’t exist without each other. Love can grow and change and it must, for if it remained the same as in those very early days, then we’d all burn out within months, even weeks. Yet it can still exist as an incredibly powerful emotion.

©Depositphotos/ gjohnstonphoto

©Depositphotos/ gjohnstonphoto

In Desire in Deadwood, I’ve weaved the story of Nate and Evelyn. They were deeply in love but separated by circumstances which meant that they didn’t see each other for a decade. However, after all that time, when they meet up in Deadwood, their love and desire for each other resurface as if they haven’t spent a day apart. I tried to portray the passionate intensity of their feelings and their struggle to overcome their conflicts so that they can be together. Do they have a HEA? It’s a rhetorical question really but go on, read it to find out!

Whatever romantic love is, whether a chemical reaction designed to encourage us to procreate or a spiritual and emotional connection that defies all sense and reason, I, for one, am really appreciative of its existence. It may cause happiness, it may cause pain, it may bind you to someone for life or just for a short time, but it makes life interesting and it gives all the writers, poets, movie makers and singers inspiration.

Here’s an extract from Desire in Deadwood where Nate and Evelyn are deeply involved in their own conflict:

Her eyes filled with tears.
“I know that I can never make it up to you and I wish so desperately that I could,” her voice cracked.
“Hush now,” he ran a hand up and down her bare arm, his fingers tingling as he caressed her warm skin from the wrist to the shoulder. She was so beautiful. “You need to rest.”
“But I don’t want to rest, Nate. I waited for so long hoping to see you. I don’t want to waste a single minute of our time together.”
“Neither do I,” he submitted to his love for her, the desire that was battling his festering anger towards her. “But I just don’t know if we can make this right.”
“Look at me, Nate.”
He stared deep into her eyes and saw the twenty-one year old Evelyn; the girl she’d been before he’d left. She’d been so innocent, yet so passionate; so sweet, yet so strong. He had loved her with everything he had to give but when she’d betrayed him he’d been broken.
“Underneath it all, I’m still the same woman you loved then. Other things have changed but I’m still the same person in here.” She pounded her fist upon her chest. “I still love you, Nate. I never stopped loving you.”
He cupped her chin and caressed it with his calloused thumb.
“I never stopped loving you either but I’ve been so angry with you, Evelyn. Those first few months away from you, I worked so hard to find gold and then when I struck lucky I couldn’t wait to get back to tell you. I was proud as a cockerel, strutting around telling all the other fellers I’d make my fortune and offer my woman everything she could possible desire.”
“If only I’d known…”
“I staked my claim then wrote to you. I was afraid to leave in case someone else tried to steal it. I knew I’d get a buyer and as soon as I did and it was all done and dusted, I hurried back to you. I had a nugget of gold safe in my pocket ready to give you so as we could make it into a ring and we’d be able to tell our grandchildren that your wedding band was carved from the gold I’d claimed especially for you. What a story that would’ve been.” His eyes misted over as he remembered the dream he’d once had.
“That was a beautiful idea,” she whispered, squeezing his arm.
“But when I got to your Daddy’s ranch…” He hung his head.
“I was gone.”
“It broke my heart in two, Evelyn. I’d been so sure of us and so sure of you. I never suspected for a moment that you’d even consider marrying someone else.”
“Neither did I. It wasn’t what I really wanted, Nate.”
“Then why’d you do it?” he asked, still holding her chin. He watched as her lower lip trembled and she tried to form the words of an explanation but before she could, he covered her mouth with his own and surrendered to the ache in his heart that begged him to hold her, to taste her and to indulge in the joy of loving her once more.
When he stopped for a moment and pulled back to look at her, a tiny sigh escaped her and she leaned towards him, her arm curling around his neck.
“Do you really love me, Evelyn?”
She nodded, her eyes heavy with desire, her lips red and open, ready for his kiss.
“Do you want to be with me again, like before?” His cheeks flushed as he asked the question and he mused for a moment at his own bashfulness. He realised at that moment that he wanted her to want him too; he wanted her to long for him as he had longed for her and he needed her to love him.
“More than anything, Nate,” she placed a hand over heart in a gesture of sincerity.
Nate stood, leaned over and scooped the woman he loved into his arms then carried her upstairs to the bedroom he’d designed with her in mind and lay her down on the bed he’d carved with her image held deep in his heart.

RELEASED AUGUST 30th  AT TOTAL-E-BOUND

RELEASED AUGUST 30th AT TOTAL-E-BOUND

Never Surrender Your Dreams!

I’m relatively new to this game of writing, so I’m not going to try to sound like an expert but I wanted to share my experience with you, just in case any of you need some motivation.
My debut novella Desire in Deadwood will be released with Total E Bound Erotic Romance Ebooks http://www.total-e-bound.com on August 30th 2013. I’m beyond excited! It’s so wonderful that every time I look at the cover or browse http://www.total-e-bound.com/comingsoon.asp , I have to blink away tears and shake myself to really believe that: yes, I wrote it. It’s mine! Yippee!

COMING SOON!!!

COMING SOON!!!

My journey to publication hasn’t been a dreadful one. It’s taken a while but that’s because I didn’t really try hard enough at first.
I’ve always written and been a voracious reader. During my childhood, I won various poetry competitions and whilst at University, I had a poem and a short story published. But there was a little voice in my head that told me that although I had some ability, I probably wasn’t good enough to get published. So I talked about it, day dreamed about it, then left higher education to become. . . a teacher. I figured that teaching literature to my students would be enough and that I was just one of those people who would watch the success of others but probably never achieve it myself.
How wrong I was!
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Over the following decade, I had two beautiful children and found that I was so busy being a mother and working that I didn’t have much time to think about being creative. At times, I would sigh and my eyes would mist over with unrequited longing (and sometimes the effects of white wine) for what could have been but then I’d put my ‘practical’ head on and dismiss my ponderings. It happened for other people in other places, not people like me. But, as my babies matured, I felt that yearning to write building again. Only this time, it was stronger. I’d immersed myself in motherhood but I wasn’t happy with my job. It wasn’t being in the classroom but the bureaucracy of the profession. So, after some deliberation, I quit teaching.
It was an enormous step but I had some savings and I kept earning by marking examinations, moderating coursework for a local awarding body and tutoring. When I wasn’t marking, moderating, tutoring or being mum, I tried my hand at penning a medical romance. I read lots of romances, plotted a story then wrote the first three chapters and a synopsis.
I submitted my manuscript to a major romance publisher then waited . . . and waited . . .
I should have been finishing it then starting the next one but I didn’t. I procrastinated. A lot! Then some more.
When the rejection finally came, I wasn’t surprised. The letter was kind and made a few suggestions about point of view changes and other things I hadn’t even considered. So, what did I do? Not a lot. It just wasn’t the right time for me, I guess. I wasn’t taking it seriously enough and I doubted myself too much. So, I got myself another full time job at a different school and thought that writing was just a dream and perhaps I didn’t really have it in me.
However, a few years ago, when I met my husband and told him all about my dreams, something clicked. He really believed that I had it in me and he encouraged me to go for it. His confidence boosted my own and spurred me onwards.
So, armed with the support of my love and now getting more rest (as my beautiful children were now both sleeping through the night) I began writing in earnest. I scoured the internet for submission calls and publishers accepting unsolicited manuscripts. I wrote and plotted and submitted. There were rejections but they weren’t heartbreakingly negative. I even had several ‘revise and resubmits’ which gave me hope and encouraged me to persevere. One publisher had a lovely acquiring editor and she really helped me to develop my skillset but then my lowest moment came – her publishing house rejected a manuscript I’d revised according to their suggestions. They were so kind and positive about it but I felt really crushed. It was just before Christmas last year and I felt like throwing in the towel once again.
Guess what? I didn’t. My husband and children’s support, combined with the amazing encouragement of other writers I’ve befriended in our global community, such as the lovely Carole Remy http://www.caroleremy.blogspot.co.uk, Rayne Hall http://www.sites.google.com/site/raynehallsdarkfantasyfiction, Rachel Brimble http://www.rachelbrimble.blogspot.co.uk, Seumas Gallacher http://www.seumasgallacher.com and Lisa Whitefern http://www.lisawhitefern.wordpress.com (to name a few) all served to give me the boost to keep going.
Add to that the fire now lit inside me that burned to do this; to succeed, and I knew that this time, I wouldn’t give up, I would not surrender my dreams!
Post-Christmas, a few lines just popped into my head and kept playing over and over:

“Take your clothes off.”
“What?”
“You heard me.”
Evelyn forced her mouth shut.
“So? What are you waiting for?”
Her eyes met those of the man on the moth eaten chaise longue in front of her. He was serious.

Within days, these evolved into a full plot and Desire in Deadwood was born!
I wrote it in a week (two hours an evening after work) and submitted it to Total E Bound exclusively. I’d read so many positive things about them and had contact with them before and they were extremely professional and considerate. The lovely editor (a lady I often refer to as ‘my’ editor – isn’t it funny how we become so possessive of the people who show faith in us) came back to me within a week with an offer to contract. And that, as they say, was that!

Check out the link here!
http://www.total-e-bound.com/product.asp?strParents=&CAT_ID=&P_ID=2259

My first submission of a medical romance, when I look at it now, makes me cringe. I got it all wrong. But I’ve learnt a lot and I’m still learning. Every submission and rejection taught me something new – from point of view changes, to conflict, to track changes. I’ve come a long way but I know that I still have a long way to go.
However, I’ve just finished my second novel, also set in the Wild West, and once I’ve edited it and had it critiqued, I’ll submit it. I can’t wait! It’s longer than Desire in Deadwood and slightly darker but still passionate and erotic. I’ll let you know how I get on.
So, never surrender your dreams. If you really want this – and you have to really want it or you won’t make it happen – then keep trying. You need to read lots, write lots and find some good critique partners, as well as a lovely editor who believes in your work. Don’t waste time procrastinating. If you find that you are, then maybe this isn’t for you. The journey isn’t easy and at times it can be painful, especially when you get rejected, but there’s usually a reason for it. So have a good cry, dust yourself off then get back to it, because that story you’re plotting now, the one that’s shadowing you through the day job and waking you up at night, might just be the one that nets you a contract.
Good luck! Let me know how you get on!
Molly xx
desireindeadwood_bookmark

Review of The Seduction of Emily by Rachel Brimble

The Seduction of EmilyThe Seduction of Emily by Rachel Brimble
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Seduction of Emily is an engaging tale of a young woman and her growth as a daughter, a woman in a changing society and as a lover. It has all of Rachel Brimble’s usual charm and style, as well as her ability to vividly portray a bygone era.
Emily is an amiable heroine, both loyal and mischievous, and the hero, Will, reminded me somewhat of Robin Hood. He may not rob the rich to feed the poor but he has had to fight to survive and though his past may not be perfect, he was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth, so he did what he had to do to get on in a society where money equalled power.
The tension between Emily and Will sparks, crackles and builds to a very erotic seduction which is composed in Ms Brimble’s usual tender yet passionate prose. There is also humour in the author voice, which makes the novel all the more enjoyable. I could imagine Ms Brimble smiling as she created some of the scenes. One in particular, where Emily hurts her ankle and has to be carried by Will, had me laughing out loud!
The ‘villain’, Nicholas Milne, is a character the reader wants far away from our heroine, yet despite his crimes, there are questions that arise about him which could be answered in a sequel. I would also love to see more of Annie, the maid, because she was an adorable secondary character and I can see how her story has lots of potential. This is another element of the novel that I loved; the secondary characters do not take over the plot but they are strong enough to warrant their own stories being told in the future.
I thoroughly enjoyed the novel! I was seduced by the intricate weaving of the plot, the sights and sounds of Bath that was, the building romance between characters I grew fond of and the conflicts that I yearned to see resolved.
The only disappointment is that I have to wait until 2014 for the sequel! 🙂

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