New Releases: February 27th, 2015

February 27, 2015

Ever the Same by BA Tortuga

 

Single dads Audie and Dixon must commit to change and each other to bring their two families together into one.

Audie Barrack is in it up to his elbows with a sick calf when his son’s school calls. Seems Grainger has gotten into yet another fight. When he walks into the principal’s office, he’s shocked to find his son has been fighting with a little girl named Randi.

 

A little girl with one blind dad and one dad who recently passed away.

 

Goddammit.

 

Dixon has lost his sight, his career, and his husband. Thank God for his brothers, Momma and Daddy, and his little girl, or he would simply give up. The last thing he needs is for Randi to start trouble at school, especially trouble that puts him in contact with another dad who might expect him to be a functional human being.

 

Dixon is struggling to live as a blind man, Audie is terrified someone might see he has a closet to come out of, and everyone from the school to both men’s families is worried for the men and their children. Unless they get themselves together and commit to change, neither of them stands a chance.

 

Length: Novel (256p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 27, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-831-3) | Buy as Paperback ($16.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-830-6)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here For You by Skylar M. Cates

 

Life is a thread connecting us. One pull and it all unravels. In an instant, everything between Ian and Cole changes forever.

Life is a thread connecting us. One pull and it all unravels.

 

Cole Gannon arrives in the seaside town of Ocean Vista to work as a bartender and finally find a place to belong. Determined to make a home for himself, Cole lives happily with his four colorful roommates, whom he considers brothers. The only problem is Cole’s attraction to Ian Stark—a guy all wrong for him. He wishes he didn’t keep running into the sexy lawyer.

 

Ian knows Cole is attracted to him, but the younger man keeps him at arm’s length. It only makes Ian more determined to be with Cole and learn all his secrets. But while Ian has built a successful law practice, he hasn’t done too well with relationships.

 

When a sudden and devastating tragedy occurs, it shatters Cole’s world and throws Cole and Ian together in unexpected ways. In an instant, everything between them changes forever.

 

Length: Novel (234p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 27, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-813-9) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-812-2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Palace Dog by R.E. Nelson

 

In Saigon, 1971, Michael Andrews finds love and hope with Thao, a young Vietnamese man, but war means an uncertain future.

In April 1975, as the government in Saigon is falling, Michael Andrews prepares to make his way back to Vietnam to find the love he was forced to leave.

 

But Michael’s journey begins four years earlier.  He joins the Air Force to keep out of the Army and out of Vietnam, but his first assignment is teaching English in Saigon to members of the Vietnamese military in an Army program called Palace Dog.

 

As an artist, and a man, before his time in Vietnam, Michael found life lonely and unsatisfying. In the midst of war, Michael searches for direction and meaning.   He ultimately finds love and hope with Thao, a young Vietnamese art student, only to have their already uncertain future wrenched from them when he is pulled out of the country.

 

For Michael, his return in 1975 is inevitable and without question, though the outcome he hopes for is anything but assured.

 

Length: Novel (206p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 27, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-538-1) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-537-4)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Winter’s Wolf by Tara Lain

 

Winter and FBI Matt Partridge learn Winter’s father’s motive are questionable, the pack alphas are pussies, and nothing is pure but love.

Tales of the Harker Pack: Book Three

 

Winter Thane was raised on the two cardinal rules of werewolf existence: don’t reveal yourself to humans under penalty of death, and there’s no such thing as a gay werewolf. It’s no surprise when his father drags him from his wild life in remote Canada back to Connecticut to meet his old pack in hopes it will persuade Winter to abandon his love of sex with human males. Of course Dad’s hopes are dashed when they come face-to-face with the gay werewolves in the Harker pack.

 

Winter takes one look at FBI agent Matt Partridge and decides bird is his favorite food. Partridge is embroiled in an investigation into drug dealing and the death of a fellow agent. He can’t let himself get distracted by the young, platinum-haired beast, but then Winter proves invaluable in the search for clues, a move that winds them both up in chains and facing imminent death. Winter quickly learns his father’s motives are questionable, the pack alphas are a bunch of pussies, humans aren’t quite what they seem, and nothing in the forests of Connecticut is pure except love.

 

Length: Novel (220p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shapeshifters

Release Date: February 27, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-544-2) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-543-5)

New Releases: February 25th, 2015

February 25, 2015

Shadowing Mace by Cheyenne Meadows

 

Wolf shifter Shadow doesn’t want Mace’s help investigaing a series of accidents. Their growing desire for each other makes it even worse.

With his brother away at a conference, alpha wolf shifter Shadow finds himself paired with IT analyst Mace, the one man he can’t stand. Stuck with the partnership due to his pack leader’s order, Shadow can only count down the days until his life returns to normal. He’s a loner. Period. No matter how much his inner beast protests.

 

Mace isn’t thrilled either, but can’t resist the temptation to push all the surly alpha’s buttons, even as he fantasizes about what could be. Flirting with danger, he’s determined to make the best of the situation, if he can only get Shadow to give in to both their desires.

 

Unfortunately, a twisted revenge-seeker has other plans.  A series of events rocks the entire pack, leaving innocent people hurt and fear running rampant.  Both men are thrust into the chaos, working tirelessly to track down the culprit before someone winds up dead.  The pressure of trying to stay a jump ahead, with absolutely no clues, pushes them to the brink. Add in a burning hunger for each other, and their world begins to crumble around them. With no other choice, they have to trust and depend on one another in order to have a chance at solving the mystery and saving lives.

 

Length: Novella (117p.) | Genre: Paranormal, Werewolves/Shifters, BDSM, Mystery/Suspense

Release Date: February 25, 2015

Buy as eBook ($4.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-601-2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shaken Up by Nicole Forcine

 

Tim Myers is wary of exposing his body or his heart, but he might have found a match made for collaring in Dom Jae Seong.

Tim Myers is the flamboyant and overly fastidious owner of the adult shop Little Earthquakes. In his spare time, he moonlights as a sub for his friend’s BDSM classes, and while he’d love to find a Dom to cater to his domestic servitude kink, he’s wary of exposing his body and his heart. When Jae Seong comes into Tim’s shop and asks him for help with a wax play demo, Tim is turned off by the idea. Jae is nothing if not persistent, though. He’s a skilled Dom and soon finds out why Tim is so protective of his body, his neck, and his heart. Over a series of play dates, the two grow close, and it dawns on Tim that he might be looking at a match made for collaring.

 

Length: Novella (74p.) | Genre: BDSM, Contemporary | Release Date: February 25, 2015

Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-499-5)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Vendetta by A.J. Llewellyn

 

Garrick’s heart breaks when his rare Dean From Hell Vendetta guitar is stolen. He finds more than support in Officer Mak Inoue.

3rd Edition

 

Devastated after his home is ransacked, Garrick Cross’s heart breaks further when he finds his rare, beloved Dean From Hell Vendetta guitar on an online auction. When he’s outbid, Garrick feels he’s lost everything. The police try to help him locate his stolen property, but the auction’s a done deal. His precious Vendetta is gone. After tracking down the man who beat him to it, Garrick asks if he’ll consider selling the guitar at a higher price. Reclusive collector Micah Drake declines, but finding Garrick attractive, offers a different price: a weekend in his bed. When Garrick turns to the officer in charge of his case, Mak Inoue, he finds more than just moral support.

 

1st Edition published  by Extasy Books, 2010.

2nd Edition published by Silver Publishing, 2014.

 

Length: Novella (58p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 25, 2015

Buy as eBook ($3.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-546-6)

New Releases: February 23rd, 2015

February 23, 2015

Chyna Doll by Mickie B. Ashling

 

Is Luca’s moral compass strong enough to guide him through his period of sexual discovery and attraction to intersex male Chyna?

Horizons Series: Book Four

 

Lil Lampert’s forty-fifth birthday turns the effervescent architect into a brooding mess, and his partner, Grier Dilorio, takes him to Italy to help him regain his zest for life. The timing is bad—almost-fifteen-year-old Luca has just started high school, and his mother and stepfather are also traveling. Luca is left in the care of Chicago Bear, Clark Stevens, and his partner, Dr. Jody Williams.

 

Growing up with two dads and two gay uncles has given Luca a unique perspective on gender roles, but not all the answers. He’s had a secret crush on his straight best friend, Chip, for years. Suddenly, Luca finds himself attracted to Chyna, Chip’s twin sister. Now he’s wondering if this means he’s bisexual.

 

Born with a sexual development disorder, Chyna should have been raised as a male, but due to an epic parenting fail, is being raised as female. Hiding the truth becomes more difficult when Chyna hits puberty, and crushing over Luca adds another element to Chyna’s struggle to fit in.

 

Is Luca’s moral compass strong enough to guide him successfully through this period of discovery or will he succumb to peer pressure and shatter Chyna’s dreams for happiness?

 

Length: Novel (320p.) | Genre: Contemporary, New Adult | Release Date: February 23, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-732-3) | Buy as Paperback ($17.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-731-6)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soufflés at Sunrise by M.J. O’Shea and Anna Martin

 

Contestants on the cooking show Burned, Kai and Chase are enemies on camera and lovers behind the scenes.

“Welcome to a new season of Burned, where we find fresh new cooking talent… and a few culinary disasters! Every season we do something a little different, and this time it’s all about the sweet things in life. Get ready in week one as twenty pastry chef hopefuls and dessert connoisseurs compete for the thirteen coveted workspaces in our Burned kitchen. With stakes this big, we ask the one question on everyone’s mind: Do these chefs have what it takes to rise to the top? Or will they get Burned?”

 

Burned contestants Chase and Kai are attracted from the start and can’t wait to spend more time getting to know each other… until they see the first episode treatment and realize the producers intend to portray them as bitter enemies. At first it’s fun to pretend to bicker—enemies on film, lovers when the cameras stop rolling—but soon it’s hard not to take the faux rivalry seriously. It’s only when their choice is to band together and bake their way to the final or get burned that they find where their real loyalties lie.

 

Length: Novel (206p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 23, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-784-2) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-783-5)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To Be Loved by Pearl Love

 

Desperate to protect David both from the general—and himself—Tim struggles to complete his mission and save their love.

Sequel to To Be Human

 

Tim—designation TM 05637—thought he’d escaped his fate as a genetically engineered supersoldier when David Conley offered him a precious chance at a normal life. But General Woodard, Tim’s handler, captures them, crushing Tim’s short-lived dream. Thrilled at the return of his pet killing machine, Woodard plans to break Tim’s resistance by forcing him to virtually kill David.

 

Fortunately, Dr. Paul Anderson, the scientist who created Tim, offers them a chance at freedom. But a deadly weakness implanted in Tim’s DNA threatens his life. Without regular doses of a special medication, Tim faces debilitation and even death.  In search of a more permanent solution, Dr. Anderson enlists David’s help to infiltrate a base where a cure is kept. But David is unable to fully trust Tim, haunted by seeing Tim killing him in Woodard’s brutal training simulations.

 

Desperate to protect David, both from the general—and himself—Tim struggles to find the strength to leave the man he loves while completing the mission. With Dr. Anderson’s help, Tim and David try to stay a step ahead of the general, knowing they must reach the cure before mistrust tears them apart, Woodard catches up with them, or the clock runs out on Tim’s life.

 

Length: Novel (280p.) | Genre: Science Fiction | Release Date: February 23, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-305-9) | Buy as Paperback ($16.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-304-2)

New Releases: February 20th, 2015

February 20, 2015

First Love by Kristian F. Power

 

Krister finagles a false day pass to visit his lover, Jens, in the hospital. When he’s caught, the young soldiers’ lives will change.

Growing up, Krister Foss had a hazy awareness of being gay. Now a conscript in the same army garrison with Jens Petri, Krister has fallen head over heels in love – the first true love for both he and Jens. Having nowhere to express their feelings, they turn an old abandoned smokehouse into their secret love nest.

 

After Jens has an accident, Krister finagles a false day pass to visit his lover in the hospital. He’s found out, though, and accused of insubordination. The lives of the two young soldiers develop rapidly in unexpected and dramatic ways. Bonded by life-changing events, friendship blossoms among a group of young people, one of them the King’s nephew.

 

Length: Novel (290p.) | Genre: New Adult | Release Date: February 20, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-492-6) | Buy as Paperback ($16.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-491-9)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loving an Absentminded Astrophysicist by TN Tarrant

 

Astrophysicist Dr. Liam McGregor and his partner Jareth Manning must survive Liam’s past returning to protect themselves and their daughter.

2nd Edition

 

At twenty-three, Dr. Liam McGregor is a well-respected astrophysicist, astrobiologist, and geologist.  With no family, few friends, and no romantic prospects, he’s used to being alone. Focusing on his various scientific projects and taking care of his decidedly unusual cat help keep the loneliness at bay.

 

Jareth Manning is starting life over—new town, new job—after the loss of his husband. The last thing he expects is for the most absentminded, and beautiful, man he’s ever seen to take up residence in his heart. Nor did he expect to find himself a willingly humble slave to Her Imperial Highness, Empress the Cat. But Jareth has learned that love doesn’t come around often and to hold on to it when it does. Jareth is willing to be patient if Liam is willing to take a risk after being burned before. They just have to survive Liam’s past returning.

 

Eight years after Liam and Jareth marry, they want a child. Things don’t go well when they try to adopt, with terrible accusations thrown at Jareth. After recovering, they proceed with a private adoption, bringing home a beautiful little girl, Carinae. Then things get ugly, endangering not only Liam’s life, but Carinae’s.

 

1st Edition published as Absentminded Astrophysicist by Silver Publishing, 2012

1st Edition published as Loving the Astrophysicist by Silver Publishing, 2013

 

Length: Novel (226p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 20, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-477-3 ) | Buy as Paperback ($14.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-476-6)

 

 

 

 

 


Winging It Ashlyn Kane & Morgan James

 

Gabe didn’t intend to be the first out hockey player, but things change. Dante drags him out of a slump and into something else.

Gabe Martin has a simple life plan: get into the NHL and win the Stanley Cup. It doesn’t include being the first out hockey player or, worse, getting involved with one of his teammates. But things change.

 

Dante Baltierra is Gabe’s polar opposite—careless, reckless… shameless. But his dedication to the sport is impressive, and Gabe can overlook a lot of young-and-stupid in the name of great hockey. And Dante has a superlative ass in a sport filled with superlative asses.

 

Before Gabe can figure out how to deal, a tabloid throws him out of his comfortable closet into a brand-new world. Amid the emotional turmoil of invasive questions, nasty speculation, and on- and off-ice homophobia, his game suffers.

 

Surprisingly, it’s Dante who drags him out of it—and then drags him into something else. Nothing good can come of secretly sleeping with a teammate, especially one Gabe has feelings for. But with their captain out with an injury, a rookie in perpetual need of a hug, and the race to make the playoffs for the first time since 1995, Gabe has a lot on his plate.

 

He can’t be blamed for forgetting that nothing stays secret forever.

 

Length: Novel (300p.) | Genre: Contemporary | Release Date: February 20, 2015

Buy as eBook ($6.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-617-3) | Buy as Paperback ($17.99 ISBN: 978-1-63216-616-6)

 

Night Vision: Excerpt

February 18, 2015

My release party is almost over :(

Confession: I don’t like excerpts and I never read them! So I was reluctant to do an excerpt here. But… I guess some people like them? So for the people who do not care for excerpts, this is an alternative: the pinterest board for Night Vision, filled with inspiration photos, settings and characters and details from the story.

And for those who DO enjoy excerpts, this is from Chapter Nine:

 “YOU HAD a dream the other night.” Theron tried to sound causal and focused his attention on a lock of Alex’s hair, twisting the gold and bronze between his fingers. Alex’s head lay on the pillow, half-turned, almost exactly the way it had been a few nights ago when Theron had climbed the tree to check on him. Whatever that dream had been, it was powerful. And sexual. Theron’s curiosity burned.

“Please don’t tell me you were watching me again.” Alex searched his face and sighed, perhaps seeing some sign of guilt. “Theron, seriously, just come in next time. Why are you still sneaking around in my trees?”

“It is my way, Alex. I thought you understood that.”
“I guess. It’s still creepy, though.”
“Tell me the dream.”
Shame filled the room, and Alex squirmed in the bed, burying his face in the pillow. “I really don’t want to.”
Theron laughed, wrapping Alex in his arms and kissing his shoulder. “Come on, my little sexy dreamer. Tell me.”
“Ugh!” Alex groaned, but the emotions in the air contradicted his protest. He was embarrassed, but happy, even a little aroused. He snuggled into Theron, hiding his face. “You were in the shower. I sneaked in and leaned against the wall near the closet, where you couldn’t see me. I started jerking off and fantasizing about you. I heard you moaning, and I knew you could feel it. You knew I was there, and you called my name.”
Theron ran his hands over Alex’s back, encouraging him to continue.
“I moved so that I could see you. You stood under the shower, your hands on the wall, the water running over you. You were so hard. I wanted to make you come with my thoughts. I was sure I could do it. You looked so sexy, your muscles so tight, straining and wet, and it was easy for me. I stroked myself and thought about you, and I watched your cock. The water was hitting it, and you kept yourself under the spray, but I knew my thoughts were really bringing you off. I came, and a second later you did too, all over the shower wall, without even touching yourself.”
Theron moaned into the back of Alex’s head. “Did you come in your sleep? Or when you woke up?”

***

Buy Night Vision!  Amazon • Dreamspinner • AllRomance

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Thank you to Dreamspinner for being such a nice company to work with, and thank you for letting me takeover this blog! I’ve had a great time here today <3

Night Vision: alternating points of view

February 18, 2015

I think this would be a good time for a giveaway. Agree?

In Night Vision, each chapter is told half from Alex’s point of view, and half from Theron’s, and I kept it to third person for both.

One of the best things about alternating pov is being able to feel and hear and know all the thoughts of each character. I think that makes a Romance fun to read, and fun to write :)

A disadvantage is trying to keep each “voice” distinct, so that it is always really clear whose head you are in as a reader. Luckily for me, Theron’s style of speech was much different from Alex’s. Theron rarely uses contractions, and he is more formal in general. Also, he is a non-native English speaker (he is Greek) so that also made his voice distinctive.

In my other books, I have used first person (not alternating, just staying in one main character’s head the entire time) and I do enjoy the intimacy that allows as well.

I do think alternating third person is my favorite, though. In the last book I wrote that way (Love You Forever) I let each character have a whole chapter before switching. But Night Vision is a novella, so more frequent shifts seemed appropriate.

I am currently working on a third person book which does not alternate, so it is told entirely from one point of view, but that one has a bit of a mystery element to it, so the more limited information helps add tension. I find myself having to fight the urge to switch to the other main character’s voice!

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So what I’d like to know is – what is your favorite point of view? First person? Third person? And also, do you prefer to switch back and forth, or to stay in one head?

Answer in the comments for a chance to win a copy of Night Vision!

Flash Fic Teaser: Night Vision

February 18, 2015

For Valentine’s day, I posted this piece of “flash” fiction on my blog. I thought I would share it here, too, as it basically functions as a teaser for Night Vision:

Theron ran across the snow, careful to step only in the existing tracks but still fast enough to be unseen by humans. He’d worn thick sheepskin boots, and a long down coat that brushed the tops of his knees. The clothing kept him warm, but increased his visibility against the snow.

He slowed as he approached a small, yellow colonial style home. The cold night air was quiet, and empty of humans. Still, Theron was careful. If he was spotted it might mean having to find a new territory, and he did not feel like dealing with that hassle right now.

The home’s glowing windows promised warmth and comfort. But it wasn’t shelter Theron sought here.

Prowling for enough human emotion to eat was sometimes difficult during the winter months. No open windows meant all the nourishment was trapped inside. Last week, Theron had been forced to feed at the supermarket—a sad meal which consisted of shopper’s mingled frustration and annoyance, with a smattering of fear and greed. He shook himself to clear the memory. Tonight would be better.

Tonight was Valentine’s Day, and the emotional sustenance in his territory should be sickeningly sweet with love and lust.

Lust he enjoyed. It was one of his favorite meals. Love could be satisfying, as well.

Best of all was anger. A clean anger, without pain or sadness, and preferably tinged with a bit of passionate desire, was Theron’s first choice. Finding it tonight should be easy.

But there was none here. The little yellow house was quiet. Only a thin fog of happiness sifted from the attic vents. Theron absorbed it, but moved on. He needed more.

The old grey house next door, usually a good source for him, was cold and dark. No one home. He ran down the block, still searching.

Raised voices drifted over snow-filled backyards. He followed the promising sounds to a newer home, just a few blocks away. There was a great oak on the property, perfect for climbing. Theron scaled it easily, and maneuvered to a thick, wide branch. He winced as a pile of snow slid from the branch and landed heavily in the previously smooth front yard. Sloppy. He sighed.

The front door banged open, and a man exited, accompanied by a meaty cloud of rage. Delicious. Theron absorbed it all.

“You’re leaving, now? Really?” Another man followed the first, this one dressed in sweatpants and a soft beige sweater.

The first man drew a set of keys from his coat pocket and turned. “Yes. I am. You clearly don’t want me here.” He stalked to the driveway and entered the car.

“David! Come on!” The second man stood in the doorway, feet bare, eyes pleading, and shouted toward the car.

David scowled through the glass. A few moments were spent waiting for the car to start, and a seatbelt to be fastened, while frustration and anger billowed in the air around the men. Theron basked in it, filling himself to capacity.

The car jerked backwards, and then rumbled away up the street. Theron remained motionless, watching.

The man in the doorway shook his head, and the angry cloud around him began to weaken, filling instead with sadness and regret. Thin, sour emotions Theron did not care for.

Finally the man retreated into the house, and Theron made to leave. He’d had his fill of human emotion now, and could spend the rest of the evening in his home.

Then a curtain moved, spilling a large square of light onto the snow right under the tree where he perched. Framed in the window was the human, standing with his arms crossed over his chest.

Theron studied him. His sandy brown hair was combed back in a large wave, a careful style somewhat at odds with his casual clothing. His mouth was turned down and his brows pinched, but his face was handsome. It would be more handsome wearing a smile. Theron frowned at the rogue thought.

A tear leaked from the corner of the man’s eye, and left a wet streak down his cheek.

Theron tilted his head. He did not like seeing this human upset. But why should he care? He did not even know this man’s name.

Still, he watched.

Eventually the man dragged a chair to the window and sat. His face had softened a bit, but it remained sorrowful. And Theron found himself growing angry. Why did the man sit? Why wait with such sadness? Why not go about his night, without the rude David?

Theron repositioned his legs on the branch. He was growing cold, even in his warm winter clothing. He could leave, just climb down the rear of the tree and move quickly, the man would never see him. But he stayed put, eyes locked on the handsome man in the window, while an irrational desire to harm David grew within him.

A crunching of tires on snow drew Theron’s attention. He didn’t have to look to know it was David returning. He flattened himself against the tree, still and silent, watching.

David had a bouquet of roses in his hand as he exited the car. Theron glanced at the man in the window for a reaction, and saw happiness light the handsome face. Excitement and love seeped from the window frame.

Pathetic. Theron bit back a groan at the easy forgiveness, but consumed the new emotions.

David opened the front door, which Theron noted with displeasure had been left unlocked. He appeared soon after in the window, and knelt at the handsome man’s feet, placing the roses in his lap. “I’m sorry, Alex. I’m sorry.”

Alex nodded and pulled David into an embrace.

Theron’s gut twisted with something that was most certainly not jealousy. Perhaps he had eaten too much this night. That was all. He climbed down from the tree and fled across the yard, recklessly adding his footprints to the clean snow.

Safe at home, he sat in front of his fireplace and pondered the man he’d watched for so long. Alex. A nice name. Theron spoke it aloud, accentuating the x sound. Yes, a very nice name. He would visit Alex again, and keep an eye on David. If nothing else, the men would likely provide him with many satisfying meals.

Maybe someday, he would see Alex smile.

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I hope you enjoyed that introduction to Theron and Alex! I’d love to hear what you think of them :)

Night Vision: what is a “strige”?

February 18, 2015

Hi! Amelia Bishop here again! I’m back, this time to shed some light on the paranormal creature in my novella Night Vision. (Which released today!)

So first of all, yes, I did make up this creature. I started, as I mentioned in my earlier post, with a ‘scene’ in mind, of a person who liked to climb trees and rooftops. And I thought: something about that is bird-like. Owl-like, really.

I started to look at some pictures of owls, just for ideas, and one of the things I found was this:

With this caption beneath it: “The appearance and calls of owls, such as the Eurasian Scops Owl, may have influenced Roman ideas of the blood-drinking strix.”

“Srix” is a genus of the family strigadae – true owls. But “Roman blood drinking strix”? That had to be investigated! After some more time (okay way too long) searching online, I pieced together the myth of the Strix. In doing so, I also found references to the Romanian Strigoi, Both myths were similar – vampires, essentially, that could transform into an animal (usually an owl). These myths are not widely known, which increased their appeal, for me.

Armed with my research, I began inventing my character: the strige.

The strige is an emotional vampire. So he or she does not drink blood, in fact, my Strige Theron eats normal food, and enjoys cooking. But to feed the strige part of himself, he must also consume emotions. So he hunts, which means he sneaks around climbing trees and observing humans, and he absorbs the emotions they exude. Strige are nocturnal, but can tolerate daylight if necessary. They live longer than humans, but are not immortal.

I added some other details to my creature as well, including a bonding ceremony, and I hope you will read the story to learn more about the strige!

What kind of creature would you make up? What kinds of paranormal creatures do you most like to read?

Character Inspirations: Night Vision

February 18, 2015

Theron

Theron is the paranormal character in Night Vision, a creature called a Strige (yes I made that up) I sort of envisioned him as a vampire, but instead of feeding on blood, he feeds on human emotions. I also gave him some Owl-like qualities (Strix is the genus name for Owls, and that is partially where the name came from) so this picture is particularly perfect:

Miles McMillan, photographed by Ryan McGinley for EDUN, fall 2012

Miles McMillan, photographed by Ryan McGinley for EDUN, fall 2012

Also the model here is almost exactly how I pictured Theron as I wrote him! Maybe Theron should be a little bit older, a tiny bit heavier, but this is really close. Theron likes to sneak around, climb trees, and cook gourmet meals. He is old, and intelligent, and ruthless in many ways, but he is also vulnerable in that he has never before been in love. So despite all his age and experience, he is often unsure of himself when it comes to relationships.

Alex

Alex is the human, Theron’s love interest. I love writing more “normal” guys, and that is what Alex is. Except, of course, let’s imagine him sexy, shall we? He has light brown hair and hazel eyes, and works as a systems administrator. This picture would be a good one for him:

model Max Hauser

model Max Hauser

Though this model is extremely handsome, I think he could blend in with normal people… maybe?

So thinking of these two characters, I think the cover artist did a great job with matching them:

Cover by Catt Ford

Cover by Catt Ford

What do you think? How important is it for you to have a visual of the characters you are reading? Do you notice or care when the cover does not match the characters as they are described in the text? Or do you prefer to imagine characters your own way?

Release Day Party! Night Vision

February 18, 2015

Hi!

I am so excited! Today my Paranormal Novella Night Vision is finally out.  Look at the cool cover:

Cover by Catt Ford

Cover by Catt Ford

Nice, right? I am happy with it :)

I wasn’t sure what to talk about here, then I remembered what one of my friends said after she found out I had written a few books. She asked where I got the ideas for stories. She said, to her, that was the most unimaginable thing – coming up with ideas, and characters, and new plots.

So I decided it might be best here to begin at the beginning, with how I came up with this story concept. And since Dreamspinner totally let me takeover this blog (haha!) I will just ramble on about it in my own weird way.

Here is how it happened for Night Vision: I was sitting in my yard last summer, watching my kids play, and I looked up at our big oak tree. (I love that tree.) Anyway, a funny thought struck me – what if there was someone in the tree, watching, or hunting? Some kind of creature… And then my mind wandered about that for a while.

I imagined a scene, with two characters. One, in the tree (or maybe on a rooftop?) and the other, on the ground, who notices. And I thought, wouldn’t it be more interesting if, instead of being surprised or nervous, the character on the ground is more just irritated or mildly accepting? Like: “oh,” *eye roll* “he’s up in that tree again.”   And it was that imaginary scene that sparked the idea for Night Vision.

My character, Theron, climbs to high places, and my character Alex is the one who notices. I think they are a super cute couple. (My next blog post here is all about them!) But the entire story really started with that one picture in my mind, of a person in a tree and another on the ground, and I built the story around it. That is only my silly method of story creation, and I am sure there are as many ways to come up with a story idea as there are writers!

Do you write yourself? How do you get your story ideas?

What intrigues you most about the books you read? Is it creating the worlds and characters, or forming the complex plots? For me, I am always so impressed with authors who write mysteries, the way they can insert clues and hints into the narrative in ways that I don’t even notice, until it all adds up at the end. I think that is so cool!

How about you? Do you wonder at the writing process, or just enjoy the story?