Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Spending My Time Off...

I've really been enjoying my no-work policy for the last few weeks. Its given me a chance to catch up on my reading, watching some DVDs, and the other day I even bought one of those word puzzle books from the Newsagents, just for the heck of it. FYI, I suck at word puzzles. You would think as an author with a better-than-average grasp on the English language, I might actually have a knack for crosswords and jumble word puzzles, but more often than not I have to go find my husband to help me, who secretly is really good at those sorts of things and doesn't even realize it.
The other fun thing I've been doing is discovering new TV shows. I've just started watching Warehouse 13 (I know, I'm SOOO behind the times, but believe me when I tell you the TV stations here in Australia are suck-tastic) and I've found a new instant favorite. I've only watched four episodes but I'm hooked. The rapport between Pete and Myka is fantastic. The chemistry between them was instantaneous and already there's been some laugh-out-loud moments. Its got all the elements I love to see in a TV show, serious moments, funny moments, great characters, an intriguing plot and lots more.  I'm really looking forward to where they go and hope this show has a long life of at least six or more seasons.
But back to my work. The self imposed ban on work until after New Year didn't last. Yesterday I wrote the opening sentence to a new book I've been thinking about and today I'm doing a read-through of The Last Shadow before I submit it to a particular editor at a certain publishing house who put out a call late last week. I think The Last Shadow might be along the lines of what she's looking for, so fingers crossed on that.
So I'm going to go back to my reading and later will be watching some more of Warehouse 13. Hope you're all having a merry December and get some time off to be with family and friends over Christmas.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Shelving That Manuscript

I've tried a lot of different "strategies" over the years, trying to get published. I used to flit from one manuscript to another. If I couldn't get enough interest from agents, I'd decide to start on something new. One day I wondered if that was really working for me, maybe instead of chopping and changing, I needed to pick one manuscript and stick with it for a long haul, maybe that would be the key to seeing it published.
Atrophy was that manuscript. It's been almost 3 years since I first sat down to write it. I still feel something for Atrophy I've never felt for any of my other books, but that passion and dedication wasn't enough to see it in print. I got another rejection for Atrophy today, and while I could probably continue sending it out to the few smaller presses I haven't tried yet, or even my own publisher, Noble, I've decided instead that this has to be it.
I'm officially going to shelve Atrophy. No more submitting, no more adjusting, no more reading it over and over, trying to work out what's wrong with it that no publisher or agent wants to take it.
This is not the end, however. I'll move onto other projects, but one day I'm going to go back to it. Whether that's five, ten, or fifteen years from now, who knows?
For now, it's probably a good time to be switching gears. I'm taking a break and the New Year is upon us. I've already written up a plan of where and how I'm going to focus my energies. I feel like I've been a bit all over the place the past few months, not really sure of what I want to work on, so I was working on a bit of everything at once, which I don't think is a really successful way of getting anything done.
So 2012 will see new projects, new focus and new goals. And all I can do is see where this new map of the road takes me. 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

December Neglect

If you've been around long enough, you may have notice that I severely neglect my blog at this time of year. Same goes for my work.
Its obvious why. Getting near Christmas, there's a lot of external stuff going on that keeps me away from the computer. I'm going into holiday mode because a lot of my family take time off over the Christmas/New Year break, so there's lots of parties and catching up to do. Most years I spend a lot of time thinking "I really should be writing this, or editing that." But today I decided something. I'm making my job an eleven-months-of-the-year thing. December is going to be like Sundays, a time when no work is done. Oh, you know me, I'm sure I'll do bits and pieces here and there when inspiration strikes. But I've worked my butt off in the last fifteen months, getting out five books after Sanctuary was released last September, not to mention the manuscripts I've worked on for the purpose of submitting to agents or other publishing houses.
So I'm officially going on holidays... except not leaving home. Don't be surprised if there's no new blog activity until January, though obviously if something interesting happens in terms of the submissions I have out, it'll be on here first.
So merry Christmas and safe New Year to everyone. I'm off to relax and put a dent in my to-be-read pile.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Timeless Desire Blog Tour Week Four - Guest Author HC Brown

Wow, I can't believe we've reached the last week of this tour already! Its been great fun having so many people visit and likewise going to other blogs and meeting fabulous new people. My last guest is HC Brown, so let's get to know her a little better...

H.C Brown is a multi published author of, Historical, Paranormal, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, BDSM, Time Travel, Action Adventure and Contemporary Romance.
" I write  tender erotic romance, with Male/ Female, Male/Male and ménage...always with a happy ending."
H.C writes under the pen name Pia Moonglow for YA Fantasy.
Living in Australia, HC gets her inspiration from the beautiful Gold Coast beaches.
" Let me take you to a world of fantasy and romance with delicious Alpha Males to melt your heart."

Please tell us a bit about your book.
Time to Live is a M/M BDSM story about sexual discovery.

Seth Bannock is living a lie. Nothing in his life is working out. He likes women . . . he respects women . . . but when he tries to kiss a woman and she does that tongue thing, he wants to spew.
Confused by his body's reaction to the men at his gym, Seth seeks help from the only gay club he knows—Floggers. Is the man crazy? Seeking answers, the sweet, vanilla virgin marches into the BDSM club to speak to the owner, Rio Knight.
Realization that he has been on the wrong team all his life comes in the form of a six-foot-seven Adonis by the name of Matt Duffey. Instantly attracted to the leather-clad alpha male, Seth must leave his old life behind and embrace his newfound sexuality
Seth thought his life had complications before he met Matt, but nothing comes close to the rollercoaster ride in the big dom's arms.


Did you enjoy writing this book, or did you have some tough times with it?
I enjoy writing M/M romance and BDSM the words flow as if the characters really exist.

When / Where / How do you write?
I write at home every day, I have a strict writing schedule.
Do you have some other qualification/interest/something else you do besides being a writer?
I am an International All Breeds Cat Judge.

What book/s are you reading at the moment?
I read constantly and mostly historical romance. I prefer to read newly published books so I enjoy a variety of authors.

Do you have any authors who were your inspiration/hero?
Many, Diana Gabaldon, Nora Roberts.

What are you working on right now?
I have finished and submitted two M/M historical Romances.
A Tryst of Fate is under contract by Silver Publishing.
Lord and Master a BDSM Historical.
I'm currently working on a lot of projects, A fantasy  romance, M/F and a contemporary BDSM Hurt Me Good and a Paranormal Dance for the Wolf.

Leave your email with your comment and go into the draw for a prize. Click on the tour logo to continue the tour.

You can find H.C. Brown here;

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Where Are All the Sci-Fi Buffs Hiding?

When I was first thinking about this post, I was actually going to talk about the fact that I'm only seven years behind the trend, but I finally got around to watching Battlestar Galactica (the 2004 version) and man am I addicted! I'm about three quarters of the way through the first season and am very happy at the prospect of having three more seasons of a new (or, not so new) sci-fi show to watch. And since I'm a total spoiler wench, I went and had a quick look on the Internet because I wanted to know what happens between Lee and Kara.
I was a bit disappointed to see they have a rocky relationship, marry other people and never really end up together. I was hoping for a series-long romance like Aeryn and Crichton in Farscape. Is that too much to ask? I know a lot of people say a relationship between two main characters can be the end of a show, which is why couples like Mulder and Scully, or Jack and Sam from Stargate never got together as such. However, I think it can be done well, it all depends on how the writers handle it. After all, what would Superman be without Lois Lane? Alright, he'd still be Superman, but his relationship with Lois is part of how we relate to him. Personally I'd love to see someone like Dean from Supernatural get a strong female character to play off against, and have them fall in love (and not have his woman's memory wiped so she doesn't even remember who he is anymore).
Anyway, this post wasn't meant to be about my favorite on-screen relationships, I did have a question in the post title that I wanted answered.
Where the heck have the sci-fi community gone?
Oh, I know they're around on the net, chatting on their forums, indulging in a strong online community. But haven't they noticed there are no new sci-fi shows coming up in the near future? Alright, we've got Terra Nova and that's great. But I'm talking flying-through-space-on-a-big-ass-ship sci-fi. Oh yeah, I've seen that Battlestar Galactica is getting another chapter with filming of a new spin-off series called Blood and Chrome. It appears that like the Stargate franchise, they're going to explore as many different directions with BSG as they can.
But I want something new. In the early 2000s we were spoiled for choice; Stargate: SG1 and later Stargate: Atlantis. Farscape, Andromeda (which i have never watched), Battlestar Galactica, Dark Angel, and Firefly to name the ones I am most familiar with. Now we get fantasy type shows like Supernatural lumped in with sc-fi and people think we're satisfied? As much as I love Supernatural, its not sci-fi and I'm ready to get addicted to something brand new and exciting.
So why the lack of science fiction on our TV screens?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Timeless Desire Blog Tour Week Three - Guest Author Bryl R Tyne

Today we have with us Bryl R Tyne and one lucky reader will have the chance to win a nifty swag pack. So don't forget to leave a comment. And now, without further ado...

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about who you are.

I'm Bryl R. Tyne, I most often write gritty, sexy, gay fiction featuring dysfunctional men who find love despite themselves. I've never met a "misfit" or a dog I didn't like.

What was the motivation/idea behind this book/these characters? 

Timeless Desire and Halloween. Add a dash of Russian history and a liberal smidge of man on man loving, and voilá, you have IMMORTAL.

Did you enjoy writing this book, or did you have some tough times with it? 

IMMORTAL tested my mettle as a writer and my integrity. I cannot tell you how important it is to me that I say what I mean and mean what I say, but I'd overbooked myself and basically got myself in too deep. Thankfully, the publisher was willing to give me a small extension to get this story finished! (Thank you, Jill!) Other than that, yes, I enjoyed writing this one, even if it has vampires in it! Halloween does that to me. Each year around this time, I find myself thinking of vampires, never anytime else though.
When / Where / How do you write? 

Anytime I get a chance/Anyplace that I can plug my laptop in/Lots of music, loud, LOUD music.
Do you have some other qualification/interest/something else you do besides being a writer? 

I edit and also work in the printing industry as an advertising coordinator.

What book/s are you reading at the moment? 

Right now I've got Damon Suede's Hot Head open, Aleks Voinov's Dark Soul I almost finished, Entertainment for a Master by John Preston partially read, and How to Self-Edit about halfway through.

Do you have any authors who were your inspiration/hero? 

Not really. I read little as a child and only required reading as a teen. Nothing for 28 yrs afterward and only recently discovered m/m books, which I'm an avid reader of now. But I was writing the stuff before I'd read it.

What are you working on right now? 

I'm working on my first attempt at Horror in my Anguish series for Riptide, and at the same time, writing my first Lesbian erotica for Noble Romance.

Do you have any other books out you'd like to mention? 

I have another slightly different kind of vampire tale, this one a bit more satirical, out with Riptide Publishing, called DIVINITY. I hope you check it out alongside IMMORTAL.

IMMORTAL by Bryl R. Tyne


Found abandoned as a child and taken in by the Nevsky clan, the man Ivis now feels the call of the water, the sea, but Sefton and his family, one of the most influential vampire bloodlines in Russia, isn't about to let Ivis go. As Ivis's powers grow stronger—powers unknown to him—Sefton's instructed to detain Ivis at all costs to tilt in his clan's favor the balance of power in an endless struggle between the Bogdanov water gods and Nevsky vampires. Sefton's left with a choice: power or love. Which is the greater desire?

Link to excerpt: http://bryltyne.com/excerpt-immortal-by-bryl-r-tyne
Author Website: http://bryltyne.com
Buy Link: https://www.nobleromance.com/Books?author=59

CONTEST: Leave a comment to win a Bryl R. Tyne Swag-pack!

Continue the tour by clicking the Noble Tour button

Thanks for visiting, Bryl, and good luck to everyone who enters to win the swag!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Timeless Desire Blog Tour Week Three - Guest Author Brita Addams

Week three already! The blog tour is going so fast, I can't believe we're over half way through already.
Today I have Brita Addams visiting, so let's go see what we can find out...

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about who you are.

I'm Brita Addams, and I write both m/m and m/f erotic romance. I have written several historical romances, including my Sapphire Club series and have recently delved into the contemporary realm, starting with Free Me and In His Arms, the beginning of a new series, Romeo Club, and into A Minute After Midnight and An Evening at the Starlight.

Please tell us a bit about your book.

I actually have two books on this blog tour, both for the Timeless Desire series. One is A Minute After Midnight, which is the story of Logan and Reid, two men who lost each other due to circumstances beyond their control and have been lost ever since.

The other is An Evening at the Starlight, which I bill as a poignant story of love and desire. It fits very closely with the theme of Timeless Desire. 

What was the motivation/idea behind this book/these characters?

For Midnight, I wanted a contemporary tale of two men finding their way in the world. The motivation was really that simple. The characters guided me, which is always a thrilling experience for me. They literally took the wheel and made their needs known to me.

In Starlight, Royal and Doe are very dear to my heart. I loosely patterned their story on that of my great Uncle Roy and Aunt Dorothy. The story behind their story is on my website and I invite everyone to come and read about them. 

Did you enjoy writing this book, or did you have some tough times with it?

Midnight gave me fits at times, simply because Logan and Reid are very independent thinkers. There was a fine line between keeping them manly men and giving in to their need to be the people they were when they first parted. Ultimately, they showed me their deep-seeded humanity, and the rest was rather easy.

Starlight was a joy from start to finish. From Bud's snappy repartee, right down to the final line, when everything is revealed in just a few words, I loved writing this book. It flowed beautifully, made me laugh and made me cry. I'm very attached to this one.   

When / Where / How do you write?

I usually write during the daytime, when the house is quiet. I don't have the television on (breaking a lifelong soap opera habit) and since my children are grown, and two no longer live at home. My husband is retired, but he has more than enough to keep him occupied while I hammer away at my laptop in the living room.

I've commandeered half the love seat, two cushions on the sofa and the back of the sofa, as well as an end table, all in the name of my craft. I don't like sitting up at a desk (did that for many years as an office manager), so I am quite comfy with my laptop and my sweet puppy, Fiona, laying next to me, all cuddled up, keeping my right leg nice and warm.

At five o'clock, my sweet darling husband has dinner ready—he is the best cook in the world—and we then settle into our evening, joined by our youngest daughter, who lives with us, thank the good Lord above. She's a writer too, Lindsay Marene Ordone and has one book out with Decadent.

Do you have some other qualification/interest/something else you do besides being a writer?

Aside from being a mother, a grandmother and a wife, I'm also a non-professional genealogist and have many for over twenty years. I've spent many hours tramping through cemeteries back in my home state of New York, recording gravestones for myself and for the local historical society. I can trace branches of my mother's family back to the Plantagenets. There's an old genealogy saying – "It all leads back to the Plantagenets," and I can honestly say, I haven't found too many branches in my own family tree to disprove that. Except maybe my father's Norwegian side. Nary a one of them are related to any English speaking persons.

What book/s are you reading at the moment?

I'm reading Erastes' Muffled Drum. Leads back to my love of historicals and the m/m genre in particular.

Do you have any authors who were your inspiration/hero?

Inspiration yes, two actually. Aleksandr Voinov is a genius, both as a writer and as a person. I've been fortunate enough to have Aleks as a mentor for some time now and he isn't afraid to call me on something if he doesn't see it working. He's helped me and taught me things about writing that will stay with me forever. I love his work, which has helped me expand my reading into sub-genres I hadn't ever foreseen myself reading—particularly military. He's brilliant.

The second is my friend Bryl R. Tyne. Bryl doesn't realize how genius he is, I tell him that all the time. He's poetic one minute and hard-ass the next, but always he writes beautiful stories about men everyone wishes they knew.

Bryl and I talk a lot about writing and honing our craft. He's taught me to appreciate the beauty of character creation, helped me with passive/active voice by telling me WHY it passive doesn't work (a key in me learning something, the why) and even has helped me write blurbs. He's a master at blurb writing, as many of his authors know.

I love both these guys and I know I wouldn't be where I am today without their input.

What are you working on right now?

I'm working on a m/m historical called For Men Like Us. Two very broken men, each with their own set of problems.

Do you have any other books out you'd like to mention?

Just a quick mention of my Romeo Club series. Romeo Club #1: Surprises is out now, with the second in the series being released in December. Each is a short, about 5,000 works. More about them can be found on my website.

Here's where I can be found around the net:

Email address: britaaddams@gmail.com
Website URL: http://www.britaaddams.com
Blog URL: http://www.britaaddams.com
Twitter: @britaaddams
Goodreads Page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4093476.Brita_Addams

Thanks so much!

Thanks for visiting, Brita. Sounds like you're a very busy lady! Good luck with your up-coming projects. 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Back to the Future...

... no trademark breach intended.
I'm working on my Shadow Hunter novel again this week. I got another two rejections for Atrophy, one of which the rejecting person in question had taken the time to comment on some elements of Atrophy that weren't working in her opinion. While I still do have five or so other Atrophy submissions out at the moment, I suddenly said to myself "get over it, man! Its been like three years. Don't you think its time you built a bridge?!?!"
So I plan on starting the querying game all over again. Which means I have to have something to query with. So I edited the heck out of the first five chapters, wrote a suck-nopsis (which my long-suffering crit partner is fixing up for me) and got on with writing the last 8000-odd words of the ending I never got around to doing.
And tonight, the beginning of the second book hit me, making me want to rush off and start writing it. But I'm not going to do that when I have so many other projects already on the go.
So, let's see how I get on with my Shadow Hunters. Meanwhile I have another new sci-fi novel on the go and the fourth Sanctuary book to write. Can't say I've never got nothing to do around here!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Timeless Desire Blog Tour Week Two - Guest Author J.S. Wayne

The second day of week two and we have with us multi-talented author J.S. Wayne talking about his novella and current projects...

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about who you are.

Hi, Jess! I’m J.S. Wayne, an author of erotic romance and paranormal horror. I’m currently in a program for procrastination and spork addiction, and love to write about love in all its forms and incarnations.

Please tell us a bit about your book.

“Ancient Magic” is a fantasy erotic romance story about a man who seems to have turned his back on his people to ride at the head of his homeland’s oppressors’ army and the woman who was intended to be his bride. When Varath leaves Jurav, Melody, the woman who was in line to be the High Priestess to the most beloved goddess of Jurav, thinks he is committing treason to his birthright, bride, and goddess. But all is not as it seems. . .

What was the motivation/idea behind this book/these characters?

I’ve always enjoyed multi-dimensional characters who are more than they appear to be, and writing Varath and Melody against the backdrop of a nation that has been brought ruthlessly to heel presented a great opportunity to explore hidden agendas and the difference between what is true in the heart and what appears to be true on the surface.

Did you enjoy writing this book, or did you have some tough times with it?

“Ancient Magic” was initially intended to be a vampire story under another name. I got about three thousand words in and wound up scrapping almost the entire concept in favor of something with a more fantasy feel. After five drafts, I finally came up with something that I really liked, and got rolling. 

When / Where / How do you write?

I write constantly, all the time. I’ve got a little corner of the dining room where my desk is set up, and if I’m not sitting there, I’m either eating, bathing, or sleeping!
How I write is something else again. I’m fairly dogged about starting a story and not skipping around within it. Dodging back and forth between works is another matter entirely. It’s not uncommon for me to be back and forth between three or four WIPs at any given time, and those are just the ones that are on my immediate to-do list!

Do you have some other qualification/interest/something else you do besides being a writer?

At the moment, I write as a career, which consumes my entire day. In the past, I’ve worked as a prison guard, a construction materials technician, a bartender, and a legion of other less notable jobs, so the short answer is, there isn’t a great deal I don’t have the know-how to do if I really have to.
But my heart’s in my writing, and when you love what you do, you don’t work a minute of your day!

What book/s are you reading at the moment? 

Currently, I’m in the middle of National Novel Writing Month, this blog tour, editing, and a host of other projects. I’ve got several books on my TBR for December 1st, when, if there’s any justice, I’ll be able to take some time off and unwind! But for now, I’m up to my ears in writing and simply don’t have time to read, much to my dismay.

Do you have any authors who were your inspiration/hero? 

Too many to name! But I’ll point out a couple of my favorites:
Dean R. Koontz, Jim Butcher, and John Sandford always shoot right to the top of my “must-have” list when they put out a new book.

What are you working on right now? 

Since this is November, I’m also participating in NaNoWriMo, trying to finish off the last installment of the “canonical” Angels series and a WIP entitled Once A Knight’s Enough. After those are done, I’m going to get back to work on a modern paranormal erotic horror story, The Hollow, featuring the Headless Horseman.
I’ve got two upcoming releases: “Dancing on Flames,” which is an m/m paranormal erotic romance featuring werewolves; and “Dead Means Dead,” for the forthcoming Lesbians Vs. Zombies line from Noble Romance.
And after I get all those plot bunnies skinned, I’ve got six more in various stages of development! Plus, I’m working on raising awareness for Writing Out Child Abuse, a coalition of writing professionals dedicated to providing care, comfort, aid and hope to survivors of child abuse worldwide.
So, nah…I don’t do anything much these days!

Do you have any other books out you'd like to mention?  

So far, my best-known work, and the stories that have garnered the most attention and praise, are my “Angels” series. These are “Angels Would Fall,” “Angel of the Morning,” and the full novel, Angels Cry. I hope that the readers will check these out, because I think they’re great stories that they’ll love!

Is there something I haven't asked that you'd like to tell us? 

I believe in love, magic, and magick. I hope, through reading my work, some of my readers will come to believe just how magical love in all its forms is, and that there are things which don’t make sense or follow “physical law,” but exist nonetheless.

Thanks so much!

Thank you for having me here, Jess! Before I go, I brought an excerpt from “Ancient Magic” for your reading pleasure. I hope y’all enjoy it!

Timeless Desire: Ancient Magic
More than two decades have passed since the Hodans invaded the peaceful kingdom of Jurav. In their zeal for conquest, they have mercilessly rent the Juravian national character asunder, starting with the temples of their gods.
Varath was raised from a young age by his uncle to one day assume his father's mantle— of the command warden of the Temple of Noradi, the most beloved goddess of the Juravian pantheon and the deity of heart, hearth, and the fires which burn in both.
Melody would have been the High Priestess to Noradi, and her own family has groomed her with equal care against the day when the Hodan hordes would be expelled and she could assume her rightful place as the most powerful figure in the entire nation . . . and as Varath's bride.
When Varath departed to serve in the Hodan army, Melody saw it as an unconscionable betrayal. Now Varath has returned to take his father's place as the sole guardian of a temple where no one dares enter, and he has made overtures to claim the other half of his bequest: Melody herself. But can Melody see past the deceptions and lies his rebellion has forced and learn to love the man who seems to have turned his back on his own people?
To see the book trailer, go here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Me61FU-Xa-Q

He hooked his thumbs into the broad battle belt at his waist and allowed his cloak to catch the wind; the silver chain which fastened the sable cloak tugged at his throat as the points of the heavy garment caught the night wind and flowed out behind him like ebony wings. He squared his shoulders, determined to look as confident as possible, despite the fact at this moment, he felt anything but.
Will she find me pleasing? And what of her? Does she know the tradition, and if she does, will she uphold it or shatter it?
He ground his teeth. Ludicrous, he scolded himself. This was hardly his first assignation with a woman. He had passed that milestone more than seven years previously. But experience offered no shield to ward his doubts at this moment, and he growled under his breath at his own dry mouth. His heart raced in his throat in uncertainty as to what to expect.
There! His battle-sharpened eyes picked out a flicker of movement in the trees beyond the moon-silvered, ruined courtyard. He stretched one hand casually toward his battle axe; at the first sign of anything amiss, the heavy weapon would be ready to his grasp. Aside from that slight motion, undoubtedly undetectable at the distance  separating him from the interloper, he stood as still and quiet as the stones  surrounding him.
Varath watched intently as she parted the delicate shadows of the sacred grove as if the moonlight had willed itself a pleasing form for his benefit. She drew closer, her feet making no sound on the ground beneath her as she came. Stark black and white resolved into myriad subtle nuances of silver, turquoise, amethyst, and onyx, crowned with a cascade of falling-star hair which rippled and flowed around her shoulders with every step.
She was a woman in the same sense that a raging thunderstorm was rain.
Oh, she had all the requisite curves and loveliness, of that there could be no denial. But she was much, much more than merely a soft collection of pleasing angles and lines  drawing his eye, his hand, his desire. She was a goddess, a dove amongst crows, a sensual virginal temptress. There was something eternal in the way she moved, an intangible hint  while she could touch and negotiate her way in this world, she was still somehow untainted by it. The dirt and filth  accruing to mere mortals and the grief and pain  layering their souls could find no purchase with her.
As Varath studied her approach with growing excitement, he wondered how this erotic apparition could possibly find any merit in him.
She stepped lightly over the tumbled ring of once-grand columns which had denoted the inner boundary of the temple's grounds. He noted  her feet were bare beneath her gown of deep purple, piped with silver embellishment at wrists, neckline, and waist. She wore one ring on each hand, and a silver bracelet of craftsmanship  no mere human could ever hope to duplicate encircled her delicate right wrist.
Varath's breath caught as she stopped  a mere hair's breadth beyond his arm's reach and offered him a shallow nod.
Melody favored him with a cool smile. "How have you been keeping?"
Varath grunted, taking refuge in his best, brusque military manner to conceal his desire to say something foolish . . . like, I love you. "I've been lonely. Can you even conceive of how stultifying it becomes to stand watch over this same ground night after night for as long as I have? If anything ever happened here, I would undoubtedly feel different." His tone lost some of its edge as she cut her eyes down toward the ground; he realized he had unknowingly hurt her with his abrupt, clipped speech.
"You—you've forgiven me?"

If you want to stalk me:
@jswayne702 on Twitter

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Timeless Desire Blog Tour Week Two - Guest Author KevaD

It's week two of the Timeless Desire Blog Tour and today I'm very happy to be introducing KevaD, and very excited to announce one lucky person will be winning a prize here today, so let's get on with it!

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about who you are.

Hello, Jess, and thank you for allowing me to spend some time with you and your readers.

I'm KevaD, and I write any story my mind can conjure. Whether the tale is comedy, romance, suspense, horror, or whatever, I'll tell it. I'm a storyteller who sees inspiration in everything around him. The world is a saga begging to be told, be it a curve in a lady's brow, a haggard man drinking coffee alone, a dog loping across a field, the shape of a cloud,… these are all doorways to stories. I absolutely love what I do.

As a special gift for your readers I'll give away a $10.00 Noble Romance gift certificate to a randomly selected commenter.

Please tell us a bit about your book.

I was fortunate to have two books released as part of the Timeless Desire Line.
"A Dance with Bogie and Bacall" is a sweet romance of two people stumbling through life and the ghost bent on bringing them together.
"Desire Damned" is the story of two men and the events that will cause one to sacrifice eternity for the other.

What was the motivation/idea behind this book/these characters?

"A Dance with Bogie and Bacall" is the result of listening to Bertie Higgins's song Key Largo over, and over, and over, and over, and…

"Desire Damned" took a totally different route to come to life.
We all love heroes, especially ones who stand against seemingly insurmountable odds. I thought about that for a long time. Finally the idea of a warrior unknown to the world, damned to suffer under the devil's lash stepped to the forefront. And what if he willingly suffered to protect the one person he loved, and in turn protected us all? The story fell into place from there.

Did you enjoy writing this book, or did you have some tough times with it?

I thoroughly enjoy writing all my stories. To see a concept take life, to give it breath, is an amazing experience.

When / Where / How do you write?

I have the luxury of writing fulltime, so I do just that. I start when I get up in the morning, and sometimes go all day and night. But, being human, there are times I have to walk away from my desk and accept there are other things that require my attention. I'm fortunate to have a wife who not only understands my love of writing, but fully supports and encourages it. Writing also keeps me out of her way. =) I'm a freelance journalist as well, so that takes up a significant part of my writing time.
Do you have some other qualification/interest/something else you do besides being a writer?

I sell antiques on the weekends. Mostly farm related items such as horse-drawn plows, iron wheels, well pumps, some wooden cabinets, etc.

What book/s are you reading at the moment?

I just finished "Gangsters, Harlots & Thieves: Down and Out at the Hotel Clifton." It's a collection of poems and essays written by Todd Moore about his life as a child with an alcoholic father who did odd jobs for the Capones, and their life in a rundown hotel. Marvelous book, by the way.

Do you have any authors who were your inspiration/hero?

Mystery author Sam Reaves and romance author Barbara Sheridan mentored me early on, helping me to understand the writing process and what it takes to become published. I will always be grateful for their interest and friendship.

What are you working on right now?

"Hearts on a Paper Boat" is the story of two broken lives whose paths cross. After fourteen years in prison for a murder he was convicted of while seventeen, Layton Landers isn't sure he can make it out here in a world totally foreign to him. Hannah Preston, pregnant with her dead lover's child, is only living because she has to – for her baby. Until she realizes that despite Landers's claim to the contrary, Landers didn't commit the murder.
Only by uncovering their pasts can they find their futures.

Do you have any other books out you'd like to mention?

Oh my yes. Thank you for asking.
"Sunday Awakening" romantic suspense, the "Out of the Closet" books, romantic comedy, "Catherine's Toys" a four-part gay horror serial, and "A Demon Affair" a MM paranormal.

Is there something I haven't asked that you'd like to tell us?

Just to once again say thank you for having me here, and for the continued support of readers.

I'm KevaD, wishing you only the best in your life.

"A Dance with Bogie and Bacall"

Radio DJ Scott Kincaid's first caller of the night is a lady who died forty-nine years ago. The second wants to knock his head off. And he thought falling in love would be easy.

Maureen and Frank Johnson shared the kind of romance most people believe only exists in movies. Until a ballroom fire took Maureen's life.

Franci Johnson grew up hearing her grandparents' love story a thousand times and wishes to find the kind of undying love Frank and Maureen had once upon a time.

DJ Scott Kincaid just wants the ghost following him to go away. But Maureen thinks the hunky DJ might be just the answer to her granddaughter's dreams.


Chapter One

Frank propped his elbow on the iron railing at the edge of the dance floor and absently watched yet another Humphrey Bogart lookalike attired as film noire detective Sam Spade arrogantly strut across the ballroom, through the forest of faux palm trees and potted plants with crepe paper leaves.

Ribbons of gray tobacco smoke broke and swirled in his wake. The hard, leather heels of his polished shoes clicked a beat on the floorboards. At a rickety, corner table barely illuminated under the flickering flame of a sconce gas lamp, a Rick Blaine copy in the character's patented white tux and black tie rose from a wooden folding chair and grasped Sam's extended hand. An obvious Vivian Sternwood Rutledge in full aqua gown uncharacteristically scurried across the floor until she stood at Sam's side where she ran her hand over the back of his black suit coat. A glint of a too long pocket watch gold chain flashed in the dim, orange light. A subtle nod to Rick's left, and Sam turned his shoulders to take the hand of a seated Nora Temple resplendently sensuous in a black dress with plunging neckline that tickled the top of the fleshy V of her very noticeable, ample cleavage.

"You're staring," whispered Frank's own duplicated Nora into his right ear. "Not that she doesn't
have a lot to stare at."

"She forgot the necklace. When Lauren Bacall played Nora, she wore a necklace with that dress in
Key Largo. A silver one that clung to the base of her throat and accentuated the graceful turns of her head. Lauren Bacall isn't only the most beautiful actress to ever grace the silver screen, she makes the clothing and accoutrements she wears stunning"—he shifted his gaze and lost himself in his wife's glistening green eyes—"just like you do."

A quickly raised hand pinched his jaw at the chin. "Franklin Johnson, you are such a liar." Maureen's glossy red lips curled at the corners. "But a sweet one." She pushed his face left.

"She's wearing the necklace."

He coughed a hairball of embarrassment. Oops.

Maureen pulled his face back to hers. In heels, she stood nearly as tall as he did and leaned in as if to offer up a kiss but stopped a heated breath short. "You want to gawk at a woman's chest, gawk at your wife's."

Frank glanced down. Maureen had captured the top of her black silk, body-clinging dress between thumb and forefinger allowing a full view of her diminutive, unclad breasts and perked, pink nipples.

His groin stirred immediately within his Rick Blaine white tuxedo trousers. "You hussy," he heaved out in a thick rasp. "Where is your brassiere? Some new moral descent didn't happen when we left the 50s behind us." Heat scorched his ears. How had he not noticed before this? His breath caught. God, she was beautiful.

"Built-in cups just firm enough to hold me in place." She chuckled at his discomfort and released the cloth, then slipped her arms beneath his jacket and around his torso. Inching in to him, she only stopped when the hardened beads atop her bosom pressed through his shirt and against his chest.

"Mmm," he moaned. Her mouth found his ear. Little nips tugged at the lobe. He stroked the sides of her body under the cool silk. The temperature of her skin headed for sweltering, the silken material warmed. Sweat beaded under his arms and between his thighs. She pressed into his thickening erection, which snapped to full attention under a tidal wave of arousal.

He allowed himself the publicly displayed pleasure of sliding his hands to the top of her buttocks, tracing the indentation with his little fingers. Nuzzling her soft throat, he whispered, "I want to make love to you right now. Let's get out of here."

The six-piece band comprised of three strings, the leader's clarinet, one sax, and a trombone returned from break to the small stage at the end of the long room, and oozed into a slow, soft rendition of As Time Goes By. Humphrey Bogarts and Lauren Bacalls of all sizes, shapes, and costumes materialized from the shadows of the gas lamps resurrected for this annual event celebrating Bogart's life and death. The past's mimes took to the dance floor under tiny squares of haunting light from the mirrored orb of the Harvest Moon Ballroom.

"No." Maureen grabbed his hand and yanked him into the throng of couples on the dance floor. "Bogie and Bacall wouldn't let a night like this go to waste . . . and neither will we." Her left hand snaked its way to the small of his back, her right took his left in a pretense of submitting to his "lead." She opted for a closed box foxtrot with her body trying to merge with his, their steps no more than foot-length shuffles.

"Besides, you haven't given me my anniversary orchid yet. Ten years today, Franklin Johnson. And though I love you more than ever, and have borne you three children, you will give me my orchid."

All the blood in him fell to his feet. The room swayed, but not to the music. The mirrored ball spun in a prismatic dervish. A ghostly orchid, fragile and pulsing its matte colors, swirled in and out of his vision.

"Frank? Frank! Are you all right?"

Movement. His. Somehow he moved across the floor—the orchid just beyond his grasp led the way.
"Sit down." The voice from an unseen well belonged to Maureen.

He did as instructed.

"I'll get you some water. I'll be right back."

The orchid hung motionless in the air. He reached out his open palm. The flower settled onto his skin. A smile parted his lips. The orchid was as beautiful as Maureen. A faint heat emanated from the flower's core. He brought the bloom closer. Flames engulfed the petals, burned his hand. Reflexively he dropped the small ball of fire onto the table where it disintegrated into black dust and disappeared.

"Drink this."

The chilled rim of a glass touched his lips. Iced water trickled between them. He gratefully swallowed the mouthful, filtering out the ice cubes with his teeth, and then gulped down the entire glassful of water.
"Come on,
 pal." A man's voice. Hands under his arms lifted Frank from the chair. "You just need to lie down a few minutes. A little too much bubbly, eh?"

"Our tenth anniversary," Maureen said. "We had some champagne earlier, but I didn't think he'd had that much. My husband isn't a drinker normally. Only on special occasions."

Frank flopped his head back, watching the dark ceiling boards skip past. He tried to count them, but they moved too quickly as the men on either side of him half carried him from the ballroom. Then his feet scuffed their way up a stairway and into a small room. A lamp clicked on. Light under an emerald shade flooded a cluttered desktop. He was lowered onto a leather couch that squeaked his arrival.

Maureen appeared in front of him and helped him out of his jacket. She loosened his bowtie and unbuttoned his collar. Cool air sprinkled his exposed throat.

"I'll have a pitcher of water sent up. Stay as long as you want. Not the first time a guest needed that couch to sleep it off." Two shadows stepped through the doorway into the hall.

"He's not drunk," Maureen said in a huff. She wiped his face with her open hand. "Are you okay, honey? You scared me there for a minute."

Little by little, Maureen's face came into focus. Lines of worry wrinkled her brow. Still, the creases somehow looked damn good on her. Age would meet its match in this gorgeous woman.

Frank grinned. "Yeah. Better now. Just got a little dizzy. I guess I should stay away from champagne that comes in six-packs. I'm fine. Let's get out of here." He placed his hands on the cushions and pushed in an attempt to stand.

Maureen countered with her hands on his shoulders. "You stay right there, Mister, until I'm sure you're all right."

He tilted his head and kissed her wrist. "I'm okay. Honest. Let's go home." Something inside him rolled over. An urge, a need of some kind. A desire to leave this place.

"We will, Frank." Maureen guided him downward and placed a throw pillow under his head. "But I want you to rest for a few minutes. For me? Please?" She lifted his feet onto the couch. His shoes thumped on the floor. Cool air swarmed over his stocking feet, delivering a sense of comfort in its rush. Her hands went to his waist. His belt came undone, then his trousers unbuttoned.

Tension ebbed under Maureen's care. Wrapped in her love, he was as safe as she was in his. He swept away the orchid as a momentary quirk in the thick tobacco smoke. "Too much champagne, celebration, dancing, and too much confined heat from the packed house crowd. That's all that happened. Nothing to be concerned with. I'm fine. And I still want to make love to you."

She arched a brow and ran the tip of her tongue across her red lips. Subtly moving her hips from side to side, she gripped the zipper of his pants and slowly tugged it down; each metal link clicked surrender to Frank's private lap dancer. A not unfamiliar game in their bedroom. But they certainly weren't in their bedroom. His interest and erection swelled.

Ten years of marriage, and Maureen could still turn him on in an instant.

"Are you trying to seduce me, madam? I am a married man, you know." He waggled his left hand back and forth. "I have a ring and everything."

Maureen narrowed her eyes, and huskily whispered, "It's the everything I'm after." She ran a finger over the cylindrical shape of engorged flesh under his cotton briefs. "Bogie and Bacall wouldn't waste an opportunity like this."

A grin of desire spread across Frank's face. "And neither will we."

Staccato tapping at the door.

Maureen snapped her head around. Frank groaned and looked at the young man in the open doorway. Oops.

"I – I . . . ." The trembling teen filled his lungs and tried again. "I brought your water?" He held up a cranberry colored metal pitcher and two matching tumblers. A vein of liquid dribbled down the side of the pitcher. Droplets splattered onto the wood floor.

"Put it on the desk, please," Frank mumbled. His cheeks could have lit charcoal briquettes. He dug out his wallet and a five spot. "Here. For your trouble."

"No trouble." His task completed, the teen turned to leave.

Maureen snatched the bill and stuffed it in the boy's shirt pocket. "Then accept it as a friend who won't spill his guts about what he thinks he saw that he didn't. Will that work for you?"

The freckled face flushed. "Yes, ma'am. Thanks." He all but ran out of the room. The door clicked closed behind him.

Maureen turned the lock, and then pirouetted on the ball of one foot. She kicked off her shoes. One hit the desk with a thud. Her hands slithered down her body to the hem of her dress.

"Are ready for this, Mr. Johnson?"

"Oh yeah, Mrs. Johnson."

Her features grew concerned. "Are you sure you're okay, Frank? We don't have to do this."

His heart pounded excitement and need. Muscles contracted, relaxed, tightened again. There was no way he wasn't going to make love to his wife right here, right now. "Want to bet? Take off the dress, or I'll rip it off with my teeth."

Maureen pulled the black silk from her body without mussing so much as a strand of her rolled blonde hairdo. Black panties hid the fluff between her sweat-glistened thighs. After wetting the tips of her index fingers on her tongue, she rubbed each one around the pink areolas of her milky breasts. The nipples strained and stretched.

Frank's mouth watered for the taste of her—for every inch of her. His erection throbbed for the feel of her wet folds.

"What would you like me to do, Mr. Johnson?" she throatily taunted.

"Undress me. Then I want you to lie down and enjoy. Tonight's about you. I'm going to eat you from top to bottom and back again. And I don't plan to stop until you beg me."

She ran the back of a finger down her chest, to her belly, and then dipped her hand under her panties. The black material moved in waves as she stroked herself.

His hard-on needed another two inches of skin or he'd explode.

She took a step toward him. His body quivered in anticipation. Another step and her gaze shifted to the throbbing pole between his legs.

"What if someone comes to the door? What if they discover what we're doing in here?"

The questions served to tease him, to make him wait a few more pain-filled breaths of wanting.

"Let 'em wait their turn," he snarled. "Take my clothes off and spread your legs. Bogie's hungry, and he's looking at you, kid."

Incident Report IBC-726A-39

FORMAL INCIDENT REPORT SECTION ONE Incident Date:___ 25 th August 2436 __ Incident Time:___ 22 :30 hours approx ___ Incident...