Friday, October 31, 2014

Last day to outline your story before #NaNoWriMo

#NaNoWriMo - Are you writing?

While I edit the most recent book in the HEARTS OF DARKNESS series, [Damn the Darkness] I'll be writing something very different. So I'm doing my best to at least meet the 50K mark for NaNoWriMo to get me started for next year. Such a new project and in a new genre [new adult/futuristic/sci-fi/politico/distopian] for me will be a challenge.

If you're interested in following my progress I've set up a separate BLOG for the new series named  futureorg.gov   But the first book is as yet untitled. I have a few ideas but until the story is more fleshed out, I'm holding back.

So what will I do today? I'm going to take my ideas and sit down and outline my story according to several writing coaches I've recently been following. Larry Brooks, Michael Hague, and Donald Maass top my list of mentors. Let's see if having a plan will help me write faster and more efficiently.

I am so truly excited about my CONCEPT and my PREMISE, but a story has a PLOT about something happening to someone or CHARACTERS. In order for the story to be INTERESTING, it also must have CONFLICT and CHARACTERS the reader will care about--one way or the other/love 'em or hate 'em, and they must have GOALS and  MOTIVATIONS. The HERO must show a growth arc but the ANTAGONIST can be anything from a person to a storm or even an ideology.

I may have discovered my ANTAGONIST in the form of an ideology but I'd like to put a face on the antagonist. It's fine to hate ideas, but it's fun to hate a person. There's always that retribution possibility thingy going on in your head. Isn't there?

For all my writing buddies and readers Happy Halloween or NaNoWriMo Eve.
Tomorrow the pressure begins.  ~~ Eliza


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

What genre do you read? Is it seasonal? #reading #Halloween


Seasonal Word of the Day: Chthonian [of or pertaining to the deities, spirits, and other being dwelling under the earth.]

That's a mouthful of consonants for starters.

But at this time of year, I think there's nothing more fun to read than a frightening paranormal. Defeat the Darkness serves that need for many of my readers. The evil antagonist is someone you'll love to despise.

Possessed by evil, ruled by lust, driven by hunger. Can love defeat the ancient demon and turn darkness into light?

While interning at Tulane, Max's new friend Kyle falls in love with his oldest friend, Shelby. When Kyle travels to the jungles of Guatemala to aid the earthquake victims and is bitten by a rogue jaguar, all their lives turn into the stuff of a bad "B" movie. Back in New Orleans, they're determined to fight the dark demon growing within Max and Kyle. But will the price be too high? Only Shelby can defeat their darkness.

Defeat the Darkness: Demons of the Bayou [Hearts of Darkness, Book 1]

By 

New Excerpt:

Kyle’s stomach twisted and his tongue felt thick inside his dry mouth. Over the past three days, Amyra had slowly depleted his blood yet kept him alive, drained and chained, claiming the time of his transmutation drew ever closer.
Tonight. He would be forever changed. A monster like her.
From the actions of the guards, he suspected she planned to finish the job. He hadn’t been able to handle solid food, even though his stomach felt like a hollow gourd. He’d eaten nothing all day, and he hadn’t been offered anything to drink by the guards. When he asked for water, they shook their heads, giving no reason.
Later, one of the female guards whispered some advice. “You will fare better without anything in your stomach. Take as much blood at first as you can manage to build up your strength, because the dark one will withhold it from you later.”
Perhaps they were correct. In any case, he’d find out soon enough. The largest male shifter, the one who never completely resumed his human form, growled when he entered the room. Tonight his facial features were those of the jaguar. He glanced at Kyle, then at his clothes on the bed. “Prepare yourself. Dusk approaches,” he said and turned away.Kyle sensed the guard was jealous, resentful he wasn’t the one who could fulfill Amyra’s needs. Kyle would have been cheering the guy on if it meant being out of her grasp. His final wishes for the shifter and the twisted demon woman would have been good luck and good riddance.
With shaking hands, he managed to dress in the loose black silk pants the female guard had laid out, understanding he would be taken to Amyra soon. He ignored the shirt, too lightheaded to bother with anything more. There was no point going to all the trouble, since if all went as usual, she’d want to feed immediately and have him stripped for easy access.
The very thought of drinking Amyra’s blood turned his stomach, but to his disgust, his mouth salivated. He was afraid in his weakened state there was no way he would survive if she took more of his blood without replenishing it. No food, no water, drained of blood—every cell in his body screamed for nourishment, and the jaguar roared for sexual satisfaction.
The male guard returned shortly to deliver him to Amyra. This time as he entered, Kyle could barely walk on his own as he stumbled across the threshold. The guard held him upright, and then Kyle sniffed. The most delicious scent filled his senses. His stomach growled.
He was surprised at how Amyra held herself back. When she approached him, her fangs extended but she didn’t give the order to have him tied to the bed as she usually did. Amyra tilted her head at the exit, silently ordering the guards out. Once they closed the enormous wooden door behind them, she bit her full lower lip and approached him from the large bed with the enormous carved headboard. Upon looking closer, the carvings were of a sadistic sexual nature.
“Kyle?” Amyra drew his attention back to her—only her. He stared at the deep crimson drop, hunger radiating through him. The dark droplet slid over her plump lip and contrasted against her pallid skin. His gaze traced the path of the rich blood as it slowly dribbled down to her chin.
The scent drew him closer. The delicious smell was her blood. Sniffing the air and moving ever nearer, he ran his tongue across his lips. All his vision narrowed to that spot when another drop oozed to the surface of the tiny wound and spilled over. This time he was close enough to catch it with his tongue. He closed his eyes and savored the flavor. As she bent in and kissed him, every cell in his body begged for more.
All rights reserved - copyright Eliza March 2013

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

#Rafflecopter Hauntings in the Garden - THE HOUSE by Lara Parker


The House

by Lara Parker

Hauntings in the Garden
Unexpectedly, Leslie Harrison inherits a sprawling horse farm in Florida from a distant relative. She packs up her life and relocates to the Sunshine State with no idea what awaits her. Upon her arrival, she meets the farm manager, Preston McClay and, to her chagrin, he isn’t happy to see her. Quickly the cantankerous, but rather good looking, farm manager becomes the least of her worries when things start to go bump in the night. Will the sinister activity in the house chase Leslie away, or will she prevail in the struggle between good and evil?
Rating: sweet
Page Count: 55

Excerpt:
“Well, hello there.” I crouched down and petted the cat as it continued to wind around me. “What’s your name?” I asked, knowing I wouldn’t get a response.
“Callie,” said a deep voice behind me.
I jumped up and whirled around.
A tall, lean-muscled man stood behind me. Dressed in jeans and a long-sleeved plaid shirt, he put me in mind of a lumberjack, just not as muscle-bound. His blue eyes sparkled even while his expression didn’t convey friendliness. He studied me as I studied him.
“I’m Leslie Harrison,” I said, breaking the awkward silence and offered my hand.
Hesitantly, he took my hand and gave it a half-hearted shake. “Preston.”
“Nice to meet you,” I said, though I had the distinct feeling Preston didn’t feel the same way.
“You must be the new owner,” he growled.
“Ummm…yes, Aunt Victoria left the estate to me. So here I am. Do you work on the property or…”
“I’m the farm manager. Do you know anything about horses, Mrs. Harrison?”
“Yes, I used to ride at boarding school, and its miss, I’m not married.”
I think he did his best not to roll his eyes but failed. “Great,” he said, the tone of his voice flat.
“What does that mean?” His prickly nature stirred my ire.
“Nothing.” Apparently, he had no use for me.
“I assure you, Preston… I’m sorry, what’s your last name?”
“McClay.”               
“I assure you, Mr. McClay.” I emphasized his last name. “As the new owner of the estate, I am very interested in a successful farm and hope to find a way for us to work together.”
He raised an eyebrow but said nothing.
“Now, I’ve got a house to put together so what time do you start in the morning?” Spur of the moment, I decided I would shadow Mr. McClay in the mornings and spend the afternoons putting the house together. I knew it would look like I had to prove myself to him, but honestly I needed to prove myself to me. I needed to prove I could handle everything I’d been given. I wouldn’t have someone say I didn’t try or was ungrateful for such a gift.
“About 5:00 a.m.”
“You arrive at 5:00 a.m?”
“I live here,” he said flatly.
“Where?” I looked around.
“There’s an apartment upstairs.” He pointed above our heads. “Victoria wanted someone on premise to manage the farm.”
“Oh, okay. I’ll be right here, in this spot, tomorrow morning at 5:00 a.m. Thank you, Mr. McClay.” I walked away without waiting for a reply.

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Love Her Like the Devil - TWRP Hauntings in the Garden #Rafflecopter




by Stacy Dawn
Hauntings in the Garden from 
Rating: Sensual  
Page Count: 12

A chance meeting in a honky tonk on Halloween finds Luke in the arms of a brown-haired beauty. But if the stories he overhears are true, she may be far more than she seems...and he's more than ready to find out.
Excerpt:
Halloween sure brings out the characters, don’t it?
Luke Santana chuckled at the group of college kids clamoring past him to get into the Double Deuce Honky Tonk. Half of them wore ridiculous outfits he couldn’t even begin to understand and the other half traditional fairs of caped crusaders, masked phantoms, zombies and sexy maids. He quite enjoyed the latter.
As he moved to the bar, his gaze caught on one particular blonde in a baby blue corset tight enough to overfill the small cups. The lights behind the bar glistened off Bo Peep’s pale breasts, and he instantly became hard. Luke grinned. This was his rare night away from the family-run business…and he planned to enjoy himself.
He adjusted his Stetson and sidled up to the bar, tossing a leg over the stool next to the buxom beauty. A heady breeze of cheap perfume plumed around him as she turned and graced him with a perfectly wicked smile.

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Dangerous Hauntings by Jo Barrett - Hauntings in the Garden #Rafflecopter

Dangerous Hauntings









Sequel to Jo Barrett's Chaste Kiss...
Debi Cummings and Mick Wise have been at odds since the day they met. The attraction between them is unrelenting, but neither is willing to give in, until Debi's past comes back to haunt her--literally.
(104 pages) Spicy
Excerpt:
A sudden chill stole up her spine leaving a prickly feeling across the back of her neck. She glanced over her shoulder into the dark shadows of the garden. Were those eyes?
She fell perfectly still and waited, her breath growing shorter and quicker with each passing second. Then the eyes moved. In two different directions.
She took a long, deep breath, tilting her chin toward the sky. "Fireflies. Great. Now I'm afraid of bugs." All that talk about her past had her skittish. Not to mention it was almost the anniversary of when it happened.
She shivered convulsively. Shaking her head to dispel the horrifying memory, she resumed her hurried pace to her car. As she took the last step off the path, she heard the deep rumble of Mick's laughter. Her heart sputtered in her chest then slipped forlornly back into its normal rhythm.
He wasn't for her. No man was.

Register  - see the details below
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Monday, October 27, 2014

ShriekWeek: a cozy mystery by Anne Knol Hauntings in the Garden #rafflecopter

ShriekWeek

Hauntings in the Garden
A Cozy Mystery by: Anne Knol
website: Anne Knol 
Twitter@AnneKnol1

It’s hard to fit in when you’re suspected of murder. It’s even harder to lay past ghosts to rest.

     Events organiser Maggie Ballater has a new career, a new Island home and a new life and intends to make the most of it. But two things stand in her way. One is the dangerously attractive guitarist who brings back past memories she’d rather forget. The other is the inexplicable murder of the lead actor in her ShriekWeek pageant.
     Bram Jenkins wants to clear his name after being imprisoned for a crime he swears he did not commit. He has no time to be distracted by an opinionated woman he  suspects of working for his enemy.
     Solving the ShriekWeek murder means they both have to face up to the past before they can lay their ghosts to rest and find out whether they have a future.

Excerpt:

     She felt rather than saw someone watching her.
Breath caught in her throat, but there was nothing to be frightened of. Bram leant propped on the door jamb, his right ankle crossed slackly over the left.
     “Sorry I’m late finishing.” She hated how teenage she sounded. “Are you waiting to set up class in here?”
     “Just came to see you.” He wandered in, picked up worksheets and laid them down again, stopped at the dominoes and started matching the words to the pictures.
     She had to apologize. She had rehearsed what she was going to say often enough. She cleared her throat, suddenly thick with nerves. “I wanted to say sorry about last night. I didn’t mean—”
     He waved a hand dismissively. “No worries.
Forgotten.” But his eyes when she looked were
shuttered and told a different story.
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Sunday, October 26, 2014

CRIMSON SUMMER A New Adult Story - Hauntings from the Garden by Cecilia Farrell #Rafflecopter

Crimson Summer



Hauntings in the Garden from TWRP
What Carrick County’s powerful Phelan family want, they usually get, whether that’s land like the Fitzgerald farm, or women, like the Fitzgerald girls. Handsome Liam can’t tempt Ranalt, whose heart belongs to neighbour Colin Sweeney. But his older brother Rory attracts her sister Lacey like a magnet draws steel.When the boys and their father Patrick visit Joe and Sheila Fitzgerald with a mysterious offer, all hell breaks loose. A furious Joe orders the Phelans off his property and away from his daughters, warning he knows what to do about ‘their kind’. Soon afterwards, Fitzgerald fences are slashed and cattle lie torn apart. Coincidence or cause for fear?There are secrets in Carrick County people don’t dare reveal. But Ranalt will risk everything to protect her family, the man she loves and the little girl she adores. Each turn of the summer moon brings danger and in the shadows, something waits...
Werewolf, New Adult, suspense
Rating: Spicy
Page Count: 57
Word Count: 14500
978-1-62830-564-7 Digital
Excerpt:
The line went dead.
“Where’s your cell?” I asked Colin.
“Lost it a few days ago.” His eyes fluttered.
“Papa keeps waking up and falling asleep,” Juniper said.
We had to get out of there.
I shook him gently. “Colin, do you think you could make it to the car? I’ll park as close as I can.”
“I think so.”
I felt for my keys, then realized in my rush to get inside I’d left them in the ignition. Stupid, stupid, stupid. A glance out the window revealed what I feared.
I made myself smile a little. “Junie, is poor Meg still on the floor? I bet she could use a hug.” 
As soon as Juniper left, I whispered to Colin my car was gone.
“We can take my truck. It’s in the garage. The key is in the blue dish on the kitchen counter. If it’s not there, I’ve got a spare in the garage. On a nail under the window sill.”
Surprisingly, the key was in the dish. I squeezed it in my hand as I sprinted to the garage. Maybe our luck was changing.
Colin’s pickup was there. With three slashed tires.
“Oh God,” I whispered. 
It was almost dark, the last streaks of sunset dying. And the moon was full tonight. Soon it would be the wolf’s time.
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Witch Familiar by Dayana Knight - for Hauntings in the Garden #rafflecopter

Hauntings in the Garden collection
Get a chance to win a $25 Wild Rose Press gift certificate. Don't forget to leave an email address in the comment section.
Witch Familiar, Dayana Knight's  new release, is part of the Hauntings in the Garden series available from The Wild Rose Press now in pre-order.

Witch Familiar will release worldwide on October 27th, 2014 Look for it at Amazon or Barnes and Noble 

Please come celebrate with me and other authors who are being released this month. All wonderfully chilling stories just right for the Halloween/Samhain season. I will highlight some of these stories right here on my blog. So please drop by and check out the haunting line up.

Breanna McShae is a practicing green witch—harm to none, do as you will is the mantra she lives by. She must seek a familiar as her powers have reached peak and grounding does not pull enough of her magick back.  After performing a ritual asking the Goddess to provide her with her given familiar, she finds she has two animals vying for her attentions—a wolf and a raven.  The catch is one of them is the love of life and the other devastating trouble—a sikkqui—a creature that can assume any shape and sucks the very essence of human spirit and soul out leaving none but death and destruction behind.  The only way to destroy it is too perform a dark ritual, which is taboo for a green witch.  Her biggest problem is to figure out which animal is the sikkqui and then go against her very nature to destroy it without destroying herself and the shifter who has captured her heart.

Excerpt:
The monster hovered inches above his mother’s sleeping form. Hunter tried to scream, but no sound came. He tried to run, but his feet stuck as if glued to the floor. The hideous apparition turned its face to him, eyes glaring red, its wrinkled mouth forming a wide “o” as it turned back to his mother, lips crawled back revealing rows of hideously sharp teeth. Hunter tried to shift. If he could, maybe he could break loose from whatever held him. What good would it do even if he could shift? He was nothing but a helpless puppy.
He watched her body wrench as the creature sucked her spirit from her slightly open lips. A glimmering silver-white essence poured from his mother into the mouth of the creature levitating above. Her skin grayed, and her body gave one final twitch and dropped to eternal stillness. The thing drifted past Hunter, its fiery eyes locked on him. Fear slithered through him even as whatever held him in place loosened, allowing Hunter to run down the little hallway toward the room he shared with his brother. His mind screaming, no! no! no!
He reached the doorway and once again was locked in place as he watched the creature repeat the process and take his twin brother as well. Tears poured down his cheeks. His father was away, and it was up to him to protect them. He should have taken care of his mother and brother. How could he have let this happen?
Hunter trembled as the thing turned toward him. Evil emanated sending a wave of cold tremors along his spine as it righted itself and hovered inches from the floor. Then it slid forward. The boy grimaced with the effort to move his feet, but he could not. Fear nauseated Hunter and shook his body. He watched as the horrid mouth yawned open, the monster now close enough to smell its foul breath.
Hunter squeezed his eyes shut, pushing his arms out in defense, which passed right through the specter. “No! Stay away from me!”
It moved closer, stopping within inches of the quivering boy. “You will live to suffer,” it rasped. “I just want to taste…”


Thank you for sharing your information about your new release Dayana Knight. ~~Eliza


Visit daily for other Hauntings in the Garden releases right here through November 1st and register with the Rafflecopter for a chance to win a $25.oo gift certificate from the Wild Rose Press. 


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Friday, October 24, 2014

Unlocked Treasure: Hauntings in the Garden from the Wild Rose Press #Rafflecopter


Available from The Wild Rose Press   Barnes & Noble  and  Amazon

Will a prophecy keep a lonely woman from accepting the promise of adventure?
Aleen MacRae blames the lure of the sea for breaking apart first her family then her engagement. When her interest is caught by a man she sees both in person and in a dream, she resists—afraid to believe in her aunt’s prediction that her future is tied to the sea.
Braden Williams is on the hunt for treasure buried centuries earlier by Rhode Island pirates. His search brings him to the property where Aleen lives. Collaboration on genealogy research draws them closer, and Braden steers her toward his true passion--sailing.
Attending a party with Braden’s family lets her glimpse what she’s been missing. An unexpected discovery before her date with Braden at the Halloween Midnight Organ Recital forces a decision. Will Aleen play things safe or accept what this free-spirited man offers?

Excerpt
Ah, the story of her life—practically invisible. The reminder his first sighting had been of her bikini-clad backside made her blush. Still didn’t change the facts. Aleen squared her shoulders. “I remember, but the Manor grounds are still closed.” Should she be nervous about being alone with this stranger, especially one who ignored posted rules?
“Sorry for the intrusion. Let me start over.” Smiling, he approached and extended his right hand. “My name’s Braden Williams.”
Aleen bit her lower lip, but accepted his hand. “Pleased to meet you. I’m Aleen MacRae.” At the moment their hands clasped, she felt warmth flooding her fingers. With a jerk, she released her grip, tingling sensations running along her skin. Immediately, the scent of fresh air and summer breezes wafted her way. Definitely a man of the sea. Just where I foretold your future lies. Whispers of her great-aunt Zsofika’s prophecy trickled through Aleen’s thoughts. At the memory, her cheeks flamed with heat.
“Wow.” Frowning, Braden flexed his hand and narrowed his gaze then dropped it to his flexing fingers. “That was bizarre.”
“Static electricity, from all that wind yesterday.” A reasonable explanation. In the back of her mind, Aleen could hear Zsofika scoff, “Static schmatic. A connection like that is destiny.”
“Well…” His gaze searched her face. “Aleen—hey, that’s pretty, like the direction alee.” A wide smile exposed even teeth.
Her own smile dimmed. Like I’ve never heard that before. “Thanks.” This guy was not charming his way around the rules. “Sorry, but you’ll need to come back when the gardens are open for visitors. That’s Wednesdays through—”
“Yeah, I read the sign.” He gave a dismissive wave then turned to gaze back at the main house. “But I just needed five minutes to check out some dimensions and the lot layout.”
“So, you woke up this morning and just decided to start out your week by trespassing?”

Thank you Linda for sharing your book with us today!

In honor of the Hauntings in the Garden releases and my own WITCH'S TATTOO I'm participating in a Rafflecopter. Visit the Wild Rose Press Haunted Authors and enter to win a $25 Gift Certificate from TWRP. Enter to win until November 1st 2014.


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Eliza March asks ...Can there be a happily ever after for a #menage ?

Once upon a time...there were two men who fell in love with the same  woman and she learned to love them both in return... Menage a trois... Can there be a happily ever after?

Several menage books later I'm asking my readers this question. I think the answer is: As possible as any other relationship can be. But since I usually write fantasy menages, there's often something bigger than their personal feelings on the table. Some prophecy needs to be fulfilled, the fate of the world looms dark as they make their decision, or the death of one beloved member is at stake. Life and death or world destruction ups the ante, and if the three people involved can come to terms with more is better, then the logistics and petty jealousy must be put aside for the greater good.

In my present work I'm letting the characters determine their outcome. No matter what happens with the plot, they'll still have to decide if their relationships with each other will allow for a menage ending. They haven't come to terms with the solution ... YET. I need to give them a little incentive.

Do you think three's a crowd?


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Urban Fantasy Author, J.C. McKenzie Rafflecopter

Buy Link

The Shucker's Booktique

(A Lobster Cove Series Book)
from 
The Wild Rose Press

J.C. McKenzie

Series Name: Lobster Cove
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press             
Editor: Lara Parker
Cover Artist: Debbie Taylor of DCA Graphics
Theme(s): Shapeshifters, supernatural
SubGenre(s): Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
Rating: Spicy (PG13)
Keywords: Shifter, Paranormal, Fae, Urban Fantasy
Page Count: 115
Word Count: 27346
Digital Price: 2.99
Digital ISBN 978-1-62830-659-0

COPYRIGHT © 2014 by J. C. McKenzie

Blurb:
After her fiancé dumps her and her beloved Aunt Jenny goes missing, Willa Eklund travels to Lobster Cove with a broken heart to search for Jenny while running her bookstore. When a mysterious man visits the Shucker's Booktique on a stormy night drenched in rain and covered in mud, Willa's heart melts under his stormy gaze. She wants Lon and the answers he may have, but he also has a secret. Can Willa trust him?

Lon Devlin is a Tempest, a water sprite who can only take a human form during stormy nights. He rides the waves, lives by the tides, and nothing can hold him down, not even a beautiful woman. When he visits his mortal friend, he discovers she's missing and her intriguing niece has taken her place. He wants Willa, but he also wants answers. What happened to Jenny?
  
Excerpt:

Thump! Thump! Thump!
No! She gasped. It couldn’t be. The banging on the front door of the booktique had to be a figment of her imagination. She couldn’t will Lon into existence. Why would he come back? Especially if he was involved. Unless…cold ice prickled up her spine…unless he needed to eliminate her to take care of loose ends.
No. Crazy thoughts, Willa. He could’ve taken care of her the night before. No, her heart hammered against her chest for a different reason. But it didn’t matter. The knocking on the door wouldn’t, couldn’t be him.
Thump! Thump! Thump!
Could it? She clutched her hot mug in both hands and turned toward the doorway leading to the bookstore. From the kitchen in the back room, she had a clear view through the store to the front door, but not who stood on the other side.
“Willa!” Lon growled. “Wake up and let me in!”
Willa gasped and almost dropped her cup. The tea sloshed around and some spilled over her hands. It burned, but she didn’t move. She couldn’t breathe. Somehow the air got trapped inside her throat. Why was he here? What did he want?
Oh God, let it be me!


About the Author 

Born and raised on the Haida Gwaii, off the West Coast of Canada, J.C. McKenzie grew up in a pristine wilderness that inspired her to dream. She writes Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance.



Shift Happens (Carus Series, Book 1), Available Now from The Wild Rose Press Coming Soon... Beast Coast (Carus Series, Book 2), The Wild Rose Press 


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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Writers: Elevate Your Concept

After a weekend retreat with Larry Brooks (StoryFix.com) and the authors from TARA my local RWA chapter, I think I may have the answer to being stuck. I also have to thank author, Linda Bleser who took some additional time to listen through my concerns and made a brilliant observation that caused the problem to unravel and my forward momentum to fall into place based on Larry Brook's book Story Physics.

While we were all deciding whether we were pantsers or plotters, I decided I fell somewhere in the middle. I need the freedom to plan in my head before I start, but I can't write without structure. Of all the different advice I've read, the one thing I took away from this weekend was about elevating each part of the structure to a "stellar" level (...or at least half of the points) rather than being satisfied with "good."

After years of being a reader, it's easy to fool yourself into believing you may be able to write without studying the craft, but once stuck there's nothing like knowing what you're doing to get it fixed. Hell, knowing is what helped me recognize something was wrong. Analyzing and evaluating is what helped me fix it...well, I'm starting to fix it. Next time, I'll begin with the structure and hopefully avoid this mess.

I'm off to work. I suggest you visit Larry Brooks at http://www.storyfix.com for some insightful writing advice.



Tuesday, October 7, 2014

FOR LOVE AND LOYALTY - A ‘Reverse’ Time Travel

Can you all welcome author Diana Rubino who is visiting me again, this time to introduce her new release:
FOR LOVE AND LOYALTY, a ‘reverse’ time travel by Diana Rubino and The Wild Rose Press

Can a 15th century king and a 21st century woman find love and rewrite the past, or will time tear them apart? Time travel has always fascinated me, and this story had a strange birth: my long-time critique partner Bonnie and I were tossing around ideas for my next book, and she asked me to picture Richard III in modern times blow-drying his hair. The rest is history!

England, 1476: A wizard’s charm sweeps Richard, Duke of Gloucester far, far away.

England, 2014: The Richard III Society’s annual séance doesn’t go quite as planned.

Julianna Hammond believes their mysterious visitor really is Richard. As a loyal Ricardian, she feels obligated to educate him on past and present. In dismay, Richard learns of his destiny in a certain battle, and his depiction in a certain play. Julianna and he wonder: can history be rewritten?
Back in the Middle Ages, Richard’s brothers King Edward and George Plantagenet are determined to find him­-wherever he is­-with the help of a little magic conjured up by a wizard. Since the wizard can’t say no to money or a lady, Edward-infatuated Elizabeth Woodville isn’t far behind them.
Changing one’s destiny is complicated. So is falling in love. When the two collide, three brothers, three women, and history will never be the same.

An excerpt from FOR LOVE AND LOYALTY

“Well, you’re certainly a hero,” Julianna lavished well-deserved praise on him. “You’re kind, sensitive, brave, warm and very good looking. Everything a hero should be. But why don’t you think you’re romantic?”
Richard shook his head. “I never brought a lady flowers, I don’t pour honeyed flattery over them like Ned, I don’t recite poetry like George, I don’t cook gourmet cuisine. All I can do is spread bananas on pizza.”
She smiled and sipped at her wine. “It’s romantic if your intentions are sincere. I enjoyed your banana pizza more than any gourmet meal I could get at LaGrenouille.”
“Sincere?” He buffed the Middleham Ring on his shirt. “Mayhap. I don’t put forth any false fronts. Nay, there’s naught false about my front.” He took a quick glance downward. Her eyes couldn’t help but follow.
“That’s my idea of romantic,” she assured him. “Not flowers or poetry or flattery. Just sincerity. That other stuff is just veneer, and it wears quite thin after a while.”
His eyes pinned her and she took another sip to ease the tension. “Simply speak your heart. Share your heart. That’s what romance is all about—to me,” she said softly.
He reached over, took the glass from her hand and placed it on the table in one swift, graceful movement. “Then may we share some tonight?”
The hearth glowed, seductive music floated through the lounge—the  perfect ambiance. But now that the moment was here, the reality of it nudged her in a stern warning:
Don’t.
“Come here, Julianna.” The way he opened his arms to her, she couldn’t refuse. One warm embrace can’t hurt. But once she was in that embrace, and his lips sought hers, it felt as natural as breathing. He kissed her lovingly, gently and thoroughly. Stopping him would be as wrong as telling the sun not to shine.
Her heart beat the same primitive tattoo as the music surrounding them.
When his hand slid to her breast, she knew she had to take charge or nature would. “Richard—” She hadn’t meant sound so whispery, but her voice was nowhere to be found. She cleared her throat. “We can’t get involved. It’ll be too much heartache if something happens and you get sent back.” She wondered how convincing she really sounded, with her fingers still wound through his hair and her body half pressed up against his.
“I’m not going back, Julianna. I’m resigned to my fate. I’m not like Ned, I don’t rake every wench that crosses my path. I keep my desire firmly in check. But right now my desire is about to burn a hole in these thin trousers so I’ll have to go back to wearing that torturous denim castrati garment.”
She let out a deep sigh and tried to calm her breathing. There’d been some pretty heavy breathing till now. “Richard, I’ve been fighting my feelings all along and doing a pretty good job of it so far. Don’t let me weaken. Don’t let me fall in love with you. There’s enough weird stuff going on here already. We’ve got enough to do.”

 “I’ve grown very fond of you, Julianna.” He stroked her cheek. “And I’m still growing.” He relaxed his embrace and brushed her lips with his before sitting back. “However, you must lead and I follow, as this is your domain. I’m also a gentleman. If this were Ned sitting here, you’d have been ravished thrice already, in six different ways, and on your way to fetch him a beer.”
“Doesn’t he take no for an answer?” Her hand still played through his hair.
“He doesn’t even ask.”
“Looks like he doesn’t mind never going back to his own time. After tonight, George might not, either.”
“Well, Ned covered his arse quite well. He informed me he left the kingdom in good hands with no detail unattended to, and George will go anywhere there’s wenches and booze, even if it’s back to the stone age.”
“I wonder if you can go back by sheer force of will. Our minds are so much more powerful than we think.” A jumble of thoughts entered her head and vanished. This wasn’t the time to ponder telekinesis, as he tickled her earlobe and ran his thumb over her bottom lip. All she could do was close her eyes and let the exquisite sensations take over. She instinctively moved closer. Their bodies touched, his skin against hers. One more kiss, just one more of those delicious warm kisses, and I’ll call it a night, she convinced herself. Their lips met.
The door knocker pounded.

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