Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Damn the Darkness - Read an Excerpt

Read a new excerpt: If you read Conquer the Highland Beast you knew this was the inevitable conflict so here it is from Jackson's point of view. Book one, Defeat the Darkness is available from all eBook retailers.

Coyright 2015
All Rights Reserved

Sang Froid Estate outside New Orleans

A foreign scent in the air hit Jackson's senses like a sledgehammer. Every muscle in his body hardened. As if he needed any more stimulus.
Fuck, what the hell is that?
The scent was enthralling. Amazingly sensual. Totally intoxicating. Then he saw her. Stunning. Heart stopping. Radiant. A kaleidoscope of color.
Her pale blonde hair was pulled back into a tight bun. Classy. One sexy loose curl fell at the base and seemed to tease him. 
Sexy as hell. All that class and one wild curl.
The smile on her pale pink lips was for him. 
His reaction grew stronger as the woman came toward him. Then she licked those lush, pillowed lips, and pressure built in his groin. He stopped breathing to focus, allowing his focus to travel lower, wandering over her cleavage—a stone stopped him for a split second—then he resumed the tour, down her flat stomach to her hips, and then back up. Slowly, until their eyes met.
Hell, she was lush all over.
He sniffed and staggered back. Who the hell was this belle tenatrice? She definitely was setting off the bonding scent for him, though he didn't think she was Lycan. But her teeth showed a little fang pressing into her plump, lower lip. Definitely vampire. Yet so very different—something else. But what?
What? How about the sexiest woman he'd ever seen—the first his wolf responded to, and damn, he was in trouble if she wasn't of the blood. Because the impact she had on every one of his senses, every nerve in his body, was like ice water sizzling on a hot skillet. She couldn't be from the area. He would have remembered this one.
Jackson's focus narrowed as she approached. Her scent, floating in the air, intensifying, surrounded him like an aphrodisiac. All he could see was her. All he could smell was her appealing scent. All he could think about was claiming her.
Hot. Wild. Sex.
The wolf within him began clawing his way to the surface, while Jackson did his best to fight him off.
Hell, no! Not now.
A claiming would ruin the party. The control he'd been so proud of minutes before, eluded him. He was losing the battle with the wolf over this woman. The attraction, almost impossible to resist, made him wild. He couldn't take his eyes from hers, or shake the strange feeling of dread he felt deep in his bones. The stone she wore called to him—mesmerizing him. What the hell was it?
The low seductive rumble began in his chest. What was happening?
The woman paused mid-step, for a moment waiting. Did she want him to take the last step, the step that would bring them together?
Her eyes glazed over and evaluated him with a knowing sexual appraisal. Her lashes lowered seductively. And then the air filled with another unfamiliar scent. Hers. His. A strange erotic, yet irresistible scent.
Then he sniffed and recognized the mate bonding scent. Theirs. Unable to hold back, he inhaled deeply. His chest expanded, taking it all in. His blood flow increased, readying him for the shift, and every muscle tensed. His cock hardened—painfully ready to take this woman and stake his claim.
With a puzzled expression on her face, she held out her hand, as if silently asking him to take the final step. He'd be able to touch her, then. But, did he dare?
It took every ounce of control he had to keep from grabbing her. His arms weighed a ton as he held himself in check. How could he resist?
Eventually his feet moved forward, and his hand lifted of its own accord, slowly reaching out to her. And she took it. Their fingers linked, and heat whipped through him on contact. He couldn't have released her if he'd wanted, and although he felt as if he'd been branded by the contact, he didn't let her go.
The knowledge of what she was whispered through his mind, and then a frown suddenly replaced her smile. Confusion. Thoughts. Questions. Hers. His. Dylan's—
Dylan's voice whipped through his mind and suddenly murmurred a confused question, “Caitlin, lass?” His brother's deep, familiar voice almost didn't register with Jackson through the miasma of his lust. But eventually the woman's name reverberated in his mind, and the greatest pang of regret imaginable pierced his soul.

Oh no! Caitlin?

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

New Authors...If You Really Want to Get Published - Read This

From the Editor's Desk

Besides being a multi-published author, I lead another separate life as an editor for an electronic publisher. To preface this advice, you should know I love editing and helping other authors develop their careers, (and with a large GRIN on my face), I take pride in each success I've played a small part in along the way. If this information helps anyone then pay it forward. Share your success by pulling someone with you up the steep incline.

Submission Advice:

One thing I've noticed about submissions (which sometimes tells more about the author than the manuscript) is how the guidelines are followed. So if you are thinking about submitting to anyone, anywhere, read this first...because editors know every manuscript comes with an author attached.

In school each teacher repeated, "Read and follow the directions before beginning..." and now I think, Great advice. If only more people paid attention to details. (To this day, when I shove a boxed microwave dish in to warm before reading the instructions, I think, I've done it a million times. What could be different? Then my conscience kicks in. I pull it out, read the directions, and sometimes discover the directions have changed.) 

Moving forward in life there are similar examples. Therefore, when something is vitally important to you, SHOW it. Remember "Show don't tell" from every writers' advice column you ever read? It's the same when submitting. If you don't understand the concept of SHOW DON'T TELL this is a perfect example. 

"Talk is cheap." Prove it. Show me. Cliche after cliche can be applied here for good reason. Cliches are tried and true. (Ha-ha again.) 

In your query letter, you can TELL me how important your book is, how many times you've edited your manuscript, how well you work well with others (your critique partners), or how you'll cooperate with your editor. But SHOWing is more effective. The QUERY letter shows all that if you know how to follow directions.

Carefully check the company submission guidelines, (which includes being familiar with what the company publishes) and take the submission process seriously (every step of the way). 

The true reflection of how you feel about your career, your book, and the person you are submitting to will show when you follow the guidelines carefully and COMPLETELY.

  • Don't get sloppy.
  • Don't skip steps.
  • First impressions do count.
  • Pick the right publisher for your book!

This is your chance to present yourself and your book in the best light. Clean your book 'til it glows like a shiny new penny. A well-groomed manuscript SHOWs you care about it and take pride in a job well done. It also SHOWs the effort you put into your writing. 

Then, all that effort will be rewarded because the person you submit to will see you cared enough to make it the best it could be, and hopefully will take you and your book more seriously when they make that important decision.

All that being said, a rejection doesn't mean you failed to do all this correctly. It means this publishing world is subjective, and the impression of a book is the result of very personal taste. You (pointing a finger at YOU) KNOW that's true! So do NOT be discouraged. 

Revise. Submit. Revise. Submit. Revise. Submit. And keep writing. If you've done your homework...according to directions...the A+ will be that contract.

Happy submitting!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Be Strong - Be Bold - Be Brave...when you write!

Today is the day when I think about writing and wonder why I do it. If I write for myself I shouldn't be bothered by less than stellar reviews, or not enough of them, or not being on the NY Times best seller list, but as hard as I try to hold back my competitive nature I can't. [Giggle]

I love seeing my author friends' success, every step of the way. Honestly, when I was younger I might have been jealous. Now, I just want to get there, too. In fact, if I think about their success it gives me hope. The way authors help each other out is a team effort, pulling each other and pushing to the top. It's always a pleasure to share. Because each of us is writing our own thing it isn't a competition, it's a team effort to rise to the top. There's room and we can bounce off each other.

Have a great month. See you next insecure Wednesday and until then be strong, be bold, be brave!