Swoons Issue #1 {Romance Magazine ft. Book Characters}

by - 8:18 PM

*taps mic* Hello, voyagers! Today I bring you something that for me sounded so much fun. I have no idea how it came up to me but suddenly I really wanted to do a magazine sort-of blog post ~ BUT WITH BOOK CHARACTERS. Like if they were actual living people, among us, having their relationships and successes happen in our world. I think it appeared in my head because I remembered that regency mock-up magazine someone did a long time ago. And I thought "huh what if I did one but with contemporary romance book characters?" I thought it would be really hard, I had nothing going on tbh. It was really hard // I'm a big romance reader, but I haven't read a lot of them (but I will soon). But reading romance is like the best thing for me. (if this actually works, I'm probably going to do one but with YA characters and that'd be fun too!) 

PS: Remember I'm putting characters that are not from the same world or from the same authors. But for me, I'm imagining them that somehow they all know each other in some way, because they are in the same universe. 

PS #2: As always, I'm using Photoshop to do these mock-ups. If you want to see the image more clearly, just click it and it will enlarge the picture. Either way, I'm adding the info below the image for all of them who just don't want to click but want to read what I put and what the authors so kindly wrote. 

PS #3: Thank you to all the authors who participated on this and helped me! Thanks to Rebekah Weatherspoon and her gorgeous interview  of Michael. Thanks to Megan Erickson and her funny yet creepy post about zombies. Thanks to Jay E. Tria and her magical song playlists. Thank you to Sabrina Sol and her delicious recipes. 

Welcome to Swoons!

~ Cover of SWOONS ~ { + Contents of the magazine}
What's New | Gossip and news
Eloisa Carreon is doing the cake for her best friend's high society wedding. It's bound to be glamorous and delicious!
{Save the Cake by Stella Torres}
The Lake Lovelace Rollergirls are one game to the championship! Don't miss it!
{Roller Girl by Vanessa North}
In Washington DC, the scandals never stop and the people never sleep.
{Flirting with Scandal by Chanel Cleeton}
A new dancing competition is in the works. Two rival schools for the win. 
{Finding Your Feet by Cass Lennox}
10 women who are changing the world 
- Rose Calloway | Kiss the Sky by KB Ritchie
Fashion designer and owner of Calloway Couture. 
- Martha Aguas | If the Dress Fits by Carla de Guzman
Accountant and event planner.
- Chelsea Grant | Love On My Mind by Tracey Livesay
PR executive.
- Kaya Rubio | Beginner's Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions by Six de los Reyes
Molecular Genetics scientist
- Akira Mori | A Gentleman in the Street by Alisha Rai
Billionaire businesswoman and socialite
- Maria Lopez | Hold Me by Courney Milan
Has a famous apocalypse-centered blog
- Yves Santiago | In Her Closet by Tasha L. Harrison
Entertainment columnist and has a popular sex blog
- Alexis Morgan | To Love and to Cherish by Lauren Layne
Wedding planner
- Tessa Everett | Noble Love by Té Russ
- Isabel Suarez | Even Odds by Elia Winters
Design video game manager
Michael Bradbury | Interview section {Answers provided by Rebekah Weatherspoon}
*Book: So Sweet

SWOONS: Hi, Michael! We hope that you're having a nice day here in SWOONS HQ. We want to know what made you decide to create arrangement?
MICHAEL BRADBURY: I'd seen a lot of peer shelling out cash for similar services, but I wanted to create something that put the young women's safety and comfort first

SWOONS: And now you're the owner of one amazing NBA team! What does that feel like? Was it always your dream to do it?
MB: It feels pretty amazing. The dream was to play in the NBA, but I wasn't good enough. Now it's great to be part of the league in this other capacity. [Continuing from the next page] I'm learning from the guys and they've welcomed me as one of their own. Next best thing to being on the bench.
SWOONS: Now looking back at your whole life, do you regret not doing something or wish to change a thing?
MB: Not at all. I'm right where I want to be.

SWOONS: We kind of figured you are the busiest man in the world. How do you manage your time? What's your schedule for one single day?
MB: Ruben manages my time. Since I'm and early riser, I usually get the girls going in the morning so Kayla can get some sleep. I've figured out how to use them for strength training so that's how I get my workouts in. -- I'm kidding. Kayla banned from using the twins for bench presses even though they love it. -- After they're ready for the day I'm usually in my first meeting and then depending on what time of year, I head over to the practice arena, check out what the guys are up to. That's work too. It's all work. And then I try to get home before the girls' bedtime. Bethany seems to think she can wait up for me every night. It works about thirty percent of the time. Then I squeeze whatever quality time I can with my wife before we both pass out. Some days I can work from home and I spend most of that time with my kids.
SWOONS: So we've met your wife once or twice and she's probably the greatest, nicest person we've ever met. Tell us about what you first saw and what intrigued you about her?
MB: Well she's gorgeous. That was hard to miss. Looking back, it was her honesty. She always tells me what's on her mind. It's amazing to be married to someone you know you can trust because they'll always be straight with you. It's been like that with us since day one.

SWOONS: We know you love watching movies with Kayla. But if you had to choose a favorite one, which one would it be?
MB: Goodfellas. It's Holger's favorite too, but he'll tell you all that violence is beneath him. He's lying.

SWOONS: When you think about "happiness," what do you see in your head?
MB: My kids. And Kayla.

SWOONS: And lastly, we got a question from a fan, if it's okay with you. They were wondering if you prefer boxers or briefs?
MB: My wife prefers boxer briefs. She gets what she wants. 
How To Survive a Zombie Apocalypse | Interview section {Post provided by Megan Erickson}
~ special guests: Alpha of the Silver Tip pack and his mate ~
*Book: Daring Fate

Reese: Hey! So Megan asked us here -
Dare: She asked you. Just to clarify. She asked you, because you're considered "more personable" and you dragged me along.
Reese: ...
Dare: ...
Reese: Thank you for your unnecessary clarification. We'll see who has to sleep somewhere else tonight.
Dare: Ah, but you can't resist your alpha. All I have to do is-
Reese: OKAY FINE. *clears throat with a blush* So anyway, Megan asked me - and I asked Dare - to talk a little about how to survive a zombie apocalypse.
Dare: *squints at paper* What are zombies?
Reese: She had to explain this one to me. Apparently zombies is the word they used to describe undead people.
Dare: Huh, that name is kinda hokey, don't you think?
Reese: Yeah, it sounds made up. Anyway, we refer to our undead...uh.... enemies as Noweres. They are giant human/wolf hybrid who walk around on two feet and have wolf head and claws.
Dare: They are mindless.
Reese: And they stink.
Dare: Right, so they wanna know how we survive a Nowere attack?
Reese: Yeah
Dare:All right, well first of all, Noweres roam in packs. They are dormant, meaning they just kind of shuffle along, until they smell, hear or see prey. Then they are quick fuckers. 
Reese: I'd know, because one smashed me into a tree.
Dare: *flares his nostrils* And I took off his head for it.
Reese: *bats eyelashes* So romantic.
Dare: So first of all, you want to stay downwind and silent, the best strategy is if they don't notice you at all and you pass undetected.
Reese: Which is hard to do.
Dare: Right, they have a pretty good sense of smell, and we're werewolves, so they smell us.
Reese: So if they smell us...
Dare: Hide. They aren’t very smart or coordinated. They’d follow you off a cliff and plummet to their deaths. If you can avoid them and cover your scent until they move on, that’s best. 
Reese: But that doesn't always works.
Dare: No it doesn't.
Reese: Sometimes you have to fight. End game is to take their head off.
Dare: Bloody business, fighting Noweres.
Reese: So we all live in walled compounds with self-sustaining crops and livestock. It’d be a dream to roam free, but we haven’t been able to for a hundred years, not since the plague ripped through. Noweres get free rein now. And we built walls to keep them out, and us in.
Dare: It’s a dream of mine to see those walls fall. I want to run with you through the woods, little wolf, hunting prey and not having to worry about getting ripped apart by Noweres. 
Reese: *reaches for Dare’s hand* Maybe one day. And if not our generation, we’ll work to free the next. 
Dare: *squeezes Reese’s hand back* We can only hope. 
Reese: The thing to remember about Noweres is they’re not smart. They have greater numbers, but if we play it smart, a pack can be defeated by a smaller group of wolves.
Dare: Right, usually we protect the less strong within a circle lined with better fighters. Then we send the very best among the Nowere pack to take them out one by one.
Reese: And hope like hell it’s a small Nowere pack.
Dare: *grins* Yeah, that always helps.
Reese: But we’re okay within our walls now. We got good food, and we send scouts out to assess Nowere packs and patterns.
Dare: And I’m working to form more alliances with nearby packs. Maybe one day, we can convince everyone to band together.
Reese: You’re kind of turning me on right now.
Dare: *raises an eyebrow* I thought I was sleeping elsewhere?
Reese: Oh shut up, like I was ever going to go through with that. You’re in our bed or I hunt you down. Dare: Is that so, little wolf?
Reese: *glares*
Dare: *laughs, then grips his chin* Well that hunting down goes both ways.
Reese: *shivers* So is this interview over? We good? If you ever get stuck with zombies, just come to our gates, we’ll let you in. Right Dare?
Dare: Of course.
Reese: Right, so we’re uh, gonna get going…
Dare: *stands up* Yeah, we need to get going.
Reese: Important, uh, meetings and stuff.
Dare: Very important.
Reese: So, thanks for asking me to chat, come see us if you’re ever around. And one last thing, never let a Nowere—er, zombie—catch you alone! Travel in a pack. K, over and out.
Music section
{Playlists provided by Jay E. Tria} *click, redirects to spotify link
*Book: Songs of Our Breakup


7. Imago ~ Rainsong

3 SHOWS YOU JUST HAVE TO WATCH! | Entertainment section
1) 1553 {Pretty Face}
Don't miss Luc Savage's new West End play. His new play is about Elizabeth the First. It's getting great reviews from critics and it is highly recommended from us. Tickets are on sale!
2) Infini {Infini}
Aerial Ethereal is putting up a new circus in town. Las Vegas  is welcome back New York's Infini finally. With a new cast and a magical score, prepare to travel into this magnificent new world of tricks and dangerous acrobats acts.
3) Road Trip Race {More Than Distance}
New TV show alert! All of our fabulous bingers ~ we have for you a brand new reality show! A race around the country. A car. Two people. Lots of teams competing for the grand prize! Tune in on Tuesdays 9/10 EST.
A Delicious Temptation Dessert | Food section {Recipe provided by Sabrina Sol}
*Book: Delicious Temptation

When I’m feeling cold and miserable I tend to crave comfort food. This is good and bad given that I make a living baking nothing but comfort food. I mean, I own an entire bakery filled with sweets and carbs. And there’s nothing more comforting than butter, sugar, bread and cheese. Even better when it’s all rolled into one delicious dessert: Capirotada.

For those unfamiliar with Capirotada, think Mexican bread pudding. The sweet and savory dish is usually served during the Lenten season when most Catholics abstain from eating meat on Ash Wednesday and every Friday until Easter. But the beauty and comfort of Capirotada is that you can make it whenever the mood strikes you and it can be altered every time you make it, depending on what you're craving and what you have handy. For example, the sweet syrup that coats the dessert is typically made with piloncillo -- an unrefined Mexican sugar usually sold in the form of little "pilons" or cones. But if you don't have piloncillo on hand, regular brown sugar will do.

Capirotada is both nutty and sweet. Pecans, pralines, walnuts or almonds can be mixed with dried fruit such as raisins, pineapple, apples or even bananas. My husband Eric (side note: I still love calling him my husband!) likes gold raisins so that’s usually what I make mine with. The heartiness of the dish comes from the bread -- bolillos, French bread or any sliced bread can be used (I suggest it be at least two days old). It’s topped with some type of cheese -- cheddar, colby, jack, cotija or mozzarella – it doesn't really matter what kind you choose. All that's important is that it melts and you like it. Side note: I know it may sound strange to add cheese to something that will also be sweet, but the flavors really go together. I promise!

My recipe is more traditional and is pretty close to the version that my abuela used to bake. I know that no matter how many times I try, it will never be exactly like hers. But that’s okay because I still feel close to her whenever I make it and that’s another type of comfort right there. Besides, the end result is still an ooey, gooey, buttery, sweet, delicious mess that warms me from the inside out.

So, are you ready to bake?

Here’s what you will need. Remember if you don’t have the exact items, it’s okay to substitute.
2 cups water
2 piloncillos (about 4 oz each)
2 canela (cinammon) sticks
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
3 stale or toasted bolillos
4 oz shredded colby jack cheese
1.5 oz chopped pecans (not crushed)
2 oz raisins

After gathering all of your ingredients, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Now, bring the water, piloncillos and canela sticks to a boil in a medium saucepan, then simmer for 20 minutes or until piloncillos dissolve and mixture becomes more of a syrup. (Side note: I love the way this smells when it’s cooking). When it’s ready, remove the whole canela sticks.

Next, butter a glass casserole dish (8x8). Tear up pieces of the bolillos (or whatever bread you’re using) and assemble one layer of bread across the dish. Sprinkle pecans, raisins and cheese over the bread. Repeat for a second layer of bread, pecans, raisins and cheese. Then pour the piloncillo and cinnamon syrup over all of the layers.

Cut up the butter and spread across top layer. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 7-10 minutes until cheese is melted and top layer of bread pieces are browned. I know I said I liked this recipe for cold days, but for an extra treat I’ve been known to serve it with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream!

And that’s how you make Capirotada. If you’ve never had this dish before, I hope I’ve inspired you to try it at least once.

Happy eating!
I hope you enjoyed this huge post lmao. I'm hoping I can make other issues, maybe more for romance books ~ or maybe I'll try my hand for some YA wink ~ 

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  1. I agree. it's all caps AMAZING!!! Please do more! Loved it <3

  2. Love this!! Will it be a monthly thing?


    The Images are so beautiful and well done!

    I'm lookinh foward to read the next issue

  4. This is the most unique and inventive post I have seen ever. I loved it I not only got to read fun magazine style post and see lots of different characters but I got introduced to lots of new books at the same time. Add into the fact that there is no better way to get people to read books than get them to like the characters and you have me wanting to go on a spending spree I can ill afford. I hope you do more posts like this in the future.