Guest: Vanessa Kelly is Gettin’ Sporty With Us!

IMG_0078The Riders would like to welcome Vanessa Kelly (and maybe even VK Sykes) to the convertible today.  Vanessa/VK is giving away 2 copies of CURVEBALL so be sure to show her some love in the comments!

My Secret Weapon

By Vanessa Kelly

 Anyone who knows me knows I like pro sports about as much as I like my annual visit to the gynecologist.  I come by my dislike pretty honestly.  As an overweight, uncoordinated child I loathed gym and organized sports.  There was nothing more terrifying to me than a brutal dodge ball game or facing the uneven parallel bars or the pommel horse.  In fact, I was pathetically grateful in my senior year of high school when I broke three of my toes and couldn’t play any sports for my last semester.


And yet, here I am, writing sports romance under the pen name of VK Sykes.  Why in God’s name would I do this?  There’s one reason I can think of—athletes are pretty damn sexy, especially in their cute uniforms that stretch so nice and tight across…but I digress.  You’ve got to admit, though, smoking hot guys in fantastic shape who also tend to be alpha males make great romance heroes.

The sports world is also an interesting setting with lots of opportunities for conflict and competition, and some classic clashes between the sexes—plenty of fodder for challenging both my heroes and heroines.

But I keep stumbling across my little problem—I don’t really like sports.  So how do I manage to research and write the darn things without wanting to stab my eye out with a pencil?  I have a secret weapon and his name is Randy.

Curveball final cover

That’s right—I write sexy sports romances with my husband, who at this very moment is working on the draft of our next book.  You see, Randy loves sports, especially baseball.  For a good part of the year he pretty much lives and breathes it, belonging to a fantasy league and watching games on TV with a true fan’s devotion.  And as steeped as he is in not just the facts and figures but in the personalities and history of the game, he’s able to come up with wonderful plots and interesting characters that serve as the foundation for our bestselling series, The Philadelphia Patriots.

So what do I bring to the partnership?  The sex, for one thing.  Randy hates writing sex scenes.  When I’m revising one of our manuscripts, it’s not unusual to come across this notation:  insert hot sex scene here.

 Well, okay then!  I’m also the emotion gal—I love adding layers of emotion to the bare bones structure of the first draft—and I’m the clothing consultant, too.  Randy’s good at outfitting our baseball heroes correctly, but he’s a disaster when it comes to dressing our heroines.  But that’s okay because I like that sort of stuff.  We’ve developed a collaboration that draws on our strengths and pretty much cancels out the weaknesses.

And don’t tell Randy, but I’m kind of getting into baseball, too.  When we last visited family in Pennsylvania, we went on a guided tour of the Philadelphia Phillies ballpark.  I have to say, it was pretty cool.  Almost as cool as getting a close up look at all those hot guys in their cute uniforms getting ready for the game.

I’m giving away two copies of our latest sexy sports romance, CURVEBALL.  Just tell me what’s your favorite sports, or if you’re like me and you’d rather curl up and read a good book, instead!

 Vanessa and Randy write USA Today Bestselling contemporary romances as VK Sykes.  The latest book in their award-winning Philadelphia Patriots series, CURVEBALL, is now available at major retailers.  Vanessa also writes award-winning historical romance under her own name.  You can find her on the web at or



Book Four in the USA Today Bestselling Philadelphia Patriots Series

May, 2013

 Taylor Page has never wanted anything but a career in major league baseball.  Through talent and guts, she’s finally landed a position as Assistant General Manager of the Philadelphia Patriots.  The only problem is that most men in baseball still don’t take a woman exec seriously, especially a thirty-year old blonde with no on-field experience.  She needs to do something big to convince her bosses she has what it takes to run a team.

Veteran Pittsburgh outfielder Ryan Locke’s career is in jeopardy when a suddenly unreliable throwing arm comes on top of rehab from a major injury. A single parent with a troubled daughter and an alcoholic mother to provide for, retirement is out of the question. Ryan’s best hope is for a trade to an American League team as a designated hitter, allowing him several more years of play.

When Taylor needs a replacement for an injured first baseman, she comes up with an innovative but risky idea:  convince her boss to make a trade for Ryan Locke, and then convince the still talented slugger to play first base for the Patriots.  With Ryan dead-set against that plan and both their careers on the line, neither Taylor nor Ryan can afford the explosive physical attraction between them.  But despite Taylor’s best efforts to resist Ryan’s campaign of seduction, she’s not sure she’s got the willpower to keep from playing along.


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47 Responses to Guest: Vanessa Kelly is Gettin’ Sporty With Us!

  1. Teresa Hughes says:

    I love ACC basketball and pro football. I am a big Duke fan in basketball and the Carolina Panthers in football. My husband doesn’t like sports at all. It sounds nice being able to work with your husband like this.

    Btw, if I have a game on 9 chances out of 10 I will be reading during the timeouts and commercials 🙂 Have a great day!

  2. Kathy J says:

    I like to watch my kids play sports, not much of a pro sports fan, though with 2 boys I get stuck going to my fair share of sporting events. We are currently watching high school baseball, lots of fun. I also watch basketball and soccer.

  3. TrishJ says:

    Well, hubby THINKS I love football cuz we watch together. BUT I am really reading and just yay or moan appropriately when he does. Best of both worlds!! I do however love romance books with hot sports heros. Yum.

  4. Leanna Hiner says:

    I not that into sports. My parents weren’t into sports. We went to a couple of proffessional baseball games when we were kids. I may go to a game with a friend but not every week. I do love yo watch the Olympic gsmes. I would say my favorite to watch is downhill skiing or dnowboarding.

  5. laurieg72l says:

    Sports- I’d rather play than watch,
    I grew up with a dad who was a sports fanatic. He could watch a game on TV, listen to another on the radio while reading a book.

    Favorite sports:
    Football- Green Bay Packers
    Hockey- Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche
    College football and basketball -Wisconsin Badgers & Florida Gators

    I love watching hockey because it is so fast paced and aggressive. Those guys are amazing athletes.

    Professional basketball -dislike
    Professional baseball too slow- but I cheer for the Milwaukee Brewers

  6. Robin the Book Nerd says:

    I like going to live sporting events I get more out of it then on tv. But sadely sometimes things move to slow and I still wipe out a book to read. Yes I’m the nerd with a book in my purse that everyone stares at during games.

  7. Raquel A. says:

    I haven’t found a sport yet that I don’t like. Baseball was always my first love. I’ve been to thousands of games in my lifetime, both for my local teams and traveling around the US to see games at other ballparks. I also love football, hockey, basketball. I never miss the Olympics. I’ve been to golf tournaments, professional bull riding…so many sports, so little time.

  8. CateS says:

    I’m a sports fan, but then I’m also married to a former coach & player… so it came with the territory. We’ve had Pro Sports tickets… but that became VERY expensive!! So now we have college football season tickets… If you want to really experience the fun of baseball, try some of minor league stadiums… or head to some spring training…

  9. Lois Greiman says:

    Welcome Vanessa. I don’t like pro sports for the most part, but one glimpse of your cover and I kind of saw the light. And I’m so impressed you can write with your husband and not feel the need to poke him in the eye. Or maybe I’m making assumptions. ..

  10. Kim Pinch says:

    We are a sporting family so if we are not out watching there is usually some sport on the TV or radio. Hockey is my favorite sport to watch and play.

  11. Kirsten McElroy says:

    I’d love to win a copy! My favorite sports team is the Detroit Red Wings… is about the only sport I’ll watch!

  12. Susan C. says:

    My men are golfers so that’s what we watch. It’s is got to be the hardest game on earth! I don’t read sports novels but love Southern Lit. Currently reading LOOKING FOR ME by Beth Hoffman!

  13. Karese Blackwell says:

    I love watching any sport my children are playing, but baseball and softball are my favorite. As for watching sports on television, I’m not very interested, I’d rather be reading 🙂

  14. therapygirl13 says:

    I’m a NY Yankees girl living in SoCal! But give me a romance book by one of my favorite authors and ill be a happy girl!!

  15. Love baseball, (Go Braves and Brewers) and because of my husband I watch the Green Bay Packers every Sunday in the winter. I also love to watch hockey, their speed and skill amazes me. But usually I watch while reading a book so I’m not always paying attention to what is going on in the game. 🙂

  16. Anita H. says:

    I’m more a spectator than actual player, but I love watching hockey. (It is the Canadian national sport!) 🙂 It’s a fast game that’s really intense, what’s not to like? Thanks for the giveaway,Vanessa, I’ll add your book to my TBR pile!

  17. kgagnon2013 says:

    When we lived close to Miller Park we would go to see the brewers as much as possible. Now that we are too far away from a stadium and it is so expensive, my husband just watches not only baseball but all sports on tv. I don’t really like watching on the television, I’d rather read sports romances or walk the dogs. :o)

  18. desiree draper says:

    Hockey! Rugby!Lacross! Those are my sports of choice but i love reading about all of them 🙂 well in romance of course.

  19. Ada says:

    Love sports, any type of sports. My main preference is hockey but I can have sports running on TV 24/7 and be totally cool. I even like to have sports running in the background while I’m curled up reading my latest book 🙂

  20. Carol Schaffer says:

    I am not a sports fan BUT I love reading about hot guys playing sports!!! ILOVE TO READ !!!

  21. Nicole says:

    Wow! I taught I would be the only one saying hockey. I am originally from Canada but living in California. Go Montreal Canadiens and San Jose Sharks. For next year I guess since they’re out of the play-offs. Like my dad would say, they are playing golf now.

  22. Wow! Had to run errands for a few hours this afternoon, and I come back to lots of lovely comments. Thanks for stopping by and chatting with us, ladies!

  23. Rosemary K. says:

    My favorite sport is baseball. I love the game! A wonderful winter break is a trip to Arizona to watch Spring Training. Now that summer is here. I enjoy seeing my grandchildren play as well as the Pro’s. The best of both worlds is to watch and read about a game.

  24. Charlee says:

    Randy is a pretty awesome secret weapon to have! I think it’s great that you two have found a way to bring everything together. You rock!

    Baseball was always my favorite as a teen. I really had very little interest in the sport, but I had a crush on one our high school players. I’d go with one of my girlfriends and we’d work on our tans, eat hot dogs, gossip, and enjoy the view. Those were the days!

  25. Tracie says:

    As much as I love looking at the players, if I have to choose between watching sports or reading a book, a book will win every time. I just get too frustrated with the players and coaches, it’s not good for my blood pressure. Of course some books raise the blood pressure too but I’m willing to take the risk. Looking forward to taking one for the team and reading about the Philadelphia Patriots.
    Good luck and happy writing!

  26. mathlady68 says:

    I think of reading as a sport! I actually hate organized sports except for World’s Strongest Man competitions. Those guys are crazy! jepebATverizonDOTnet

    • They sound like they might make good heroes, mathlady!

      • mathlady68 says:

        You know, the World’s Strongest Man competitors just might be great heroes for a romance. And, they are HUGE so they could make any lady feel delicate. I had never thought about it before. There is just something about watching a guy pull a semi truck down the street with nothing more than his will and determination that is so fascinating.

  27. Sue G. says:

    Well I am beyond the years of playing, but my favorite to play was softball. I love watching just about any sport and I really enjoy reading about them. I love Vanessa and think she is so honest and funny! Would love to win!

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