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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Hiatus

I am attempting to write, revise, and edit a book to have publishable by May. Because of that I'm going to be on hiatus for a short while. There will probably be an occasional post, but not regular, if I ever was regular. Wish me luck!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Of Essus and Moura #amwriting

It's been a while since I posted something good. Lately, in between revising my next book for the VHO series I have been writing a romantic fantasy about a fairy world. Only fairies. Here is a bit of history that I created in the form of a tale.


In the time when the Miasma ravaged the face of Threshold, twisting the Fae into nightmares and turning metal into deadly iron, the Bel appeared. Where she walked, the chaos abated, and the corruption was cured. She turned iron into emeralds. Tales of her spread throughout the land, and soon many joined her on her trek. Thus, the story of Essus and Moura begins.

Both hailed from strong families, each with their own consorts. Essus was known for his quick wit, charm, and the strong gift of prophecy her bore. Moura was said to be the most beautiful in the land with eyes like hyacinth and her lips scarlet as the rowan berry. It was said the radiance of the moon was in her face, pride in her brows, and the light of wooing in her eyes. However, beauty wasn’t the only thing she was known for. Moura was a warrior as fierce as any Sidhe male.

When the two met, something like lightning struck between them. Drawn they were to each other, though promised to others. The peril of death and corruption spurned passionate feeling and the two could not deny themselves for long. They vowed their undying love to one another upon the hill of what is now Caer du Moura.


Alas, it was not a union to last. Eodyr, Essus’s wife grew sick with jealousy, and soon let the Miasma take her. She became the Banshee, a creature whose very wail stopped the living heart. She sought out the lovers to lay her vengeance upon them. Essus had become wounded in the battle and could not protect himself when the banshee raised her voice. Moura covered his ears but had nothing to deafen herself. Essus awoke to find his love slain by the creature once his wife. The Banshee, satisfied at the death and misery she has wrought, disappeared into the night, leaving Essus a lifetime of grief.

Essus returned to the hill of their declaration and built Caer du Moura in remembrance. Clan Essus has watched over the site ever since.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Hot Calender Reads: December

All year we've been featuring some amazing fantasy books in our desktop calendar series. For December, we wanted to remind you of all of them. These will make perfect gifts for yourself or a friend. Some of them are even free or only $.99! In the spirit of the season we're also having a little giveaway, so don't forget to enter at the bottom of the post! Thanks for a wonderful 2014!
December

A look back at the previous Calendars for 2014:
Note: These are reusable! Each image only has the name of the month, so feel free to grab these for 2015 if you missed out this year! Just click here to be taken to the page where you can download all the high-resolution images!
January copyAurora Sky: Vampire Hunter
Only $.99!
Northern Bites (Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter #2)
Stakeout (Aurora Sky: Vampire Hunter #2.5)
Nikki Jefford:
February copy
Five: Elemental Enmity Book 1
Get your free ebook copy!
Dark Matter: Elemental Enmity Book 2
Genesis: Elemental Enmity Book 3
Horizon: Elemental Enmity Book 4
Christie Rich:
March copy
Darkness of Light (Book One)
Get your free ebook copy!
Fire in the Darkness (Book Two)
Stacey Marie Brown:
April copy
Lichgates (Grimoire Saga #1)
Get your free ebook copy!
Treason (Grimoire Saga #2)
Heritage (Grimoire Saga #3)
Illusion (Grimoire Saga #4)
S. M. Boyce:
May copy copy
Silent Orchids (The Age of Alandria #1)
Get your free ebook copy!
Veiled Shadows (The Age of Alandria #2)
Daegan (The Age of Alandria: A Companion Novella)
Only $.99!
Morgan Wylie:
June copy
Daughter of Chaos
Jen McConnel:
July
What Kills Me
Get your free ebook copy!
I Am Forever (The Sequel to What Kills Me)
Wynne Channing:
August
The Flower of Hell (Short Story Companion to A Prescription for Delirium)
Only $.99!
A Prescription for Delirium (Van Helsing Organization #1)
Noree Cosper:
September
Where the Carnies Are
Kayla Curry:
October
Empath (Flawed Book 1)
Outsider (Flawed Book 2)
To Be Released 2014
Pulled (A Flawed Short Story)
Only $.99!
Becca J. Campbell:
November
Vaempires: Revolution (The Evolutionary War-Book 1)
Only $.99!
Vaempires: White Christmas (The Evolutionary War-Book 0)
Only $.99!
Vaempires: Zombie Rising (The Evolutionary War-Book 2)
Only $.99!
Thomas Winship:

And now for the Giveaway!

Friday, November 14, 2014

M.R. Graham Blogger Book Fair Guest with #Giveaway

Well, it's the last day of the Blogger Book Fair. It's been a fun and crazy week. My last guest is another favorite of mine. M.R. Graham.

In the Shadow of the Mountains (The Books of Lost Knowledge)

Supernatural/Paranormal | Young Adult


In the twilight of the year 2003, a stranger arrives in the tiny town of Burns, Colorado. Whispers begin to fly as bodies appear, savagely mutilated, throughout the neighborhood, and the responsibility falls on two monstrously unprepared high school students to uncover the truth before the undead can destroy their hometown.


Chris Doyle is a slacker and a sci-fi geek, barely eking through his senior year of high school; Aaron Margolis is a child prodigy who could have graduated at age twelve if his parents had let him. They have never had anything in common until a woman is murdered and Aaron comes asking for Chris’s help – he is seeing Texans who cannot be real.


Then the high school’s English teacher disappears and is replaced by Daniel Leland, the sharp and reclusive newcomer, a man already convicted by public opinion. He says that he is a hunted man, and Aaron believes him, but Chris is not as sure. Doubts or no, Chris has no choice but to join up with the teacher when his best friend is kidnapped by superhuman forces, but this adventure is nothing like his comic books.


Buy Links:
FREE!

The Medium (The Books of Lost Knowledge)

Supernatural/Paranormal | Adult


Lenny is good at teaching physics. He is good at fixing things, making friends, and not attracting attention. He is good at being a medium, helping spirits pass beyond the Veil. But as a vampire incapable of violence, he has always been a bit of a joke.


All it takes is a drink in a hotel bar, a stumble into the wrong place at the wrong time, to run him afoul of Sebastian Duran, a lunatic who controls other people’s minds better than he can control his own. Torn away from everything he knows, trapped and starved and under constant mental assault, Lenny’s best hope is Kim Reed, a wizard tasked with bringing down Duran. Kim cannot believe that Lenny is evil, but neither can she hide him, and while she battles for his freedom, Lenny is forced to confront his own potential for monstrosity.


Buy Links:


The Medium Excerpt



Lenny is good at teaching physics. He is good at fixing things, making friends, and not attracting attention. He is good at being a medium, helping spirits pass beyond the Veil. But as a vampire incapable of violence, he has always been a bit of a joke.


All it takes is a drink in a hotel bar, a stumble into the wrong place at the wrong time, to run him afoul of Sebastian Duran, a lunatic who controls other people’s minds better than he can control his own. Torn away from everything he knows, trapped and starved and under constant mental assault, Lenny’s best hope is Kim Reed, a wizard tasked with bringing down Duran. Kim cannot believe that Lenny is evil, but neither can she hide him, and while she battles for his freedom, Lenny is forced to confront his own potential for monstrosity.

My Review:


So, it so interesting seeing what happened in the Shadow of the Mountains from the eyes of one of the antagonists. I have to admit that Lenny has become a favorite, almost as much as Daniel. This whole book shows you how Lenny became Hugo. Not only does it make you really feel for him and his lot in life, but it puts Sebastian in a more sympathetic light, at times. At other times, I really hated Sebastian. This story really portrays how much we can become products of our circumstances. If you haven't read this series yet, I really recommend you pick it up. What's great is they are loosely connected so you don't have to start in any order

Interview


When did you start writing?
Like quite a lot of other authors, I started writing pretty much as soon as I could hold a pen. In second grade, I filled something like eight black-and-white notebooks with a hideous, rambling Mary Sue epic directly ripping off the Unicorns of Balinor series. A couple years later, I followed it up with a hideous, rambling Mary Sue epic directly ripping off Star Trek: Enterprise, and in high school, I began the hideous, rambling Mary Sue epic that eventually matured into the Books of Lost Knowledge. It's been an arduous evolution.

What inspires your writing?
Everything. I carry a little notebook with me everywhere I go and jot down ideas as they hit me, be they from scenery or peoplewatching or just words in my head. I will also say unashamedly that I am inspired by the fiction I read or watch, and that a lot of my ideas are composed of preexisting tidbits, rearranged to form something new.

What is the best part about being a writer?
The best part so far has been the mind-blowing realization that there are at least a couple of people out there chomping at the bit to know what happens next, whether Lenny and Kim are going to be okay, what happened to Daniel to make him the way he is, whether there's something bigger going on in the shadows behind the action... These characters aren't just in my head, anymore. There are other people - besides me and a few immediate friends - who care about the figments of my imagination.

I remember a few very special books that made me cry, or scream in frustration, or jump out of my chair in triumph, and it's a sort of puzzlingly ecstatic feeling that I may have written one that does those things for someone else.

Is there something special or unique about you or your book you'd like to tell us about?
I'm not all that special. I live in a pile of books - some of which I wrote myself.
I'd like to think that my books are special. My approach to paranormal fiction isn't quite like any I've seen before. That is to say, My Vampires Are Different. They're not especially sexy, though they can be quite evil and quite dangerous or painfully inept. They're just flawed individuals trying to survive a flawed world.


Author Bio:


 MR Graham is a native Texan who traces strong cultural roots back to Scotland, Poland, and England. A mild-mannered Latin teacher during the day, Graham transforms at night into a raging Holmesian loremaster and rabid novelist.

 Though passionate about all scholarship and academia, Graham's training and true love lies with anthropology, particularly the archaeological branch.

 Also, steampunk and vampires.
Connect:

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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Peter Dawes Blogger Book Fair Guest with #Giveaway

Day Four of the Blogger Book Fair! Here is one of my favorite authors Peter Dawes:

Rebirth of the Seer (The Vampire Flynn #2)

Supernatural/Paranormal | Adult


Flynn’s quest for redemption continues in the second installment of The Vampire Flynn.


Condemned by the Supernatural Order and sentenced by their High Council to die, he and his watcher Monica must avoid capture while deciphering a riddle left by Lydia Davies. The mission takes them from Philadelphia to the Windy City of Chicago, with a master seer named Julian nipping at their heels. There, they are joined by wary allies and a cunning vampire who is bent upon exposing the full hypocrisy of the Order.


The hunter becomes the hunted. The villain transforms into a champion. But even as Peter begins to emerge from the crimson shroud of his alter ego as a newly-gifted seer, he finds himself placed on a game board he would have sooner avoided. A destiny trails him, but so does the realization that he has become a country without affiliation, about to be presented with an offer too enticing for him to simply refuse. And while the Order’s band of gifted humans might be misguided, are they beyond redemption themselves?


What remains to be seen is who might be right – the ones who remember the murderous assassin, or the few who believe in the heart of a hero nobody asked for.


Where would your wager lie?


Buy Links:
Only $.99!

My Review:

Mr. Dawes has done it again. 

The continuation of Eyes of the Seer was well worth the wait. The last book delved deep into the mind of a sociopathic killer, and we watched his struggle and rise from his murdering ways. This book is more story focused. We still get to see Peter's struggle but we also got to see more of the antagonists, from narrow minded sorcerers to bloodthirsty vampires. 

This story explores other characters as well. You learn more about Monica here (Love Monica!) and meet a few new players. Mr. Dawes style is still very elegant. 

Once again, This is my kind of vampire book. If you haven't read it yet, pick up this 

Author Bio:

USA Today Bestselling Author. Writer of the Vampire Flynn Series and Deathspell books, published by the micro-press Crimson Melodies. While primarily a novelist, he has also contributed to the story cycle Red Phone Box, and the short story anthology, Nocturnal Embers. Always working on something new, Peter leaves it up to the reader to decide if it's by sunlight or candlelight.

Connect:
Website | Twitter | Facebook

Official BBF Giveaways


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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Garrett Robinson Blogger Book Fair Guest with #Giveaway

Welcome to day three of the Blogger Book Fair! Today I am pleased to have Garret Robinson.

Nightblade

Fantasy | New Adudlt


Everyone begins their life dreaming of the great person they could become, only to have those hopes battered and broken by the world around them. The world tells them they’re not special. Family convinces them to abandon their goals for the safe route, the sure route.


Loren has been born to cruel parents and raised in an obscure village. She’s long resigned herself to an unremarkable life under the sway of a father who beats her and a mother who sees her only as means to a dowry. Loren’s dreams have almost burnt out—until fate rekindles their spark into a flame that will consume the world.


SOMETIMES ALL WE NEED IS A PUSH.


When Loren meets the fugitive wizard Xain, she dares to hope again. Escaping her village, she finds the nine kingdoms more complicated and dangerous than she could have imagined. But at long last, she’s ready to face the challenge or die in the attempt.


Loren has reclaimed her dreams—this time for good. Armed with only her wit and her courage, she will do anything to become the woman she’s always wanted to be: Nightblade, the most renowned thief in all the land.

Buy Links:
Only $.99!


Nightblade Special Offer



From November 10th through November 14th, you can pick up Nightblade, the first book of the Nightblade Volumes, for only $0.99 on Kindle! What's more — if you finish and review Nightblade, I'll send you a FREE ebook copy of Mystic, the second book in the series! Just fill out the form at http://garrettbrobinson.com/free-mystic.


99 cents and a review — two books. It doesn't get much better than that.


Nightblade Excerpt



Loren imagined she could feel her father’s eyes on her back as she ran. Her steps came faster and faster still, but soon Xain began to tire and flag behind her. She had to slow her pace to match him, and every step seemed an irredeemable loss.


“You must hurry,” she said. “He will find us.”


Xain did not bother with an answer. He could move no faster, and they both knew it. After a time his ankle caught upon a protruding root and he stumbled, and in that moment her father struck.


He leapt from the shadows between two thick oaks. His hand lashed out, cracking against Loren’s cheek. She fell to the ground with a cry and struggled up before he could pin her down. But he did not come for her. When she rose she saw him atop Xain instead, wrapping an arm around the thinner man’s throat. Xain’s face turned red and edged toward purple. He fought to bring a hand around, scrabbling for her father’s face, but her father caught the hand and twisted it, prompting a screech of agony.


Hearing that cry of pain, Loren’s mind turned to ice. Never had her father hurt another in her presence—except when he fought her mother, and Loren only wanted each to hurt the other as much as possible. But now her father threatened to crush the life from her one chance, the only man who Loren had ever truly thought could save her from the life of pain and obscurity she feared.


Icy rage turned white-hot, and Loren drew the dagger. She leapt at her father with the blade held high. But her father saw her coming and released Xain, scrabbling to his knees and away from her wild swing.


He rose and roared like a bear brought to bay. The sound dampened Loren’s sudden burst of fury, and she hesitated a moment. That moment was enough, and like a snake her father lunged. One hand gripped her wrist to hold the dagger helpless. His other hand curled into a fist that he drove into her face.


Stars erupted at the edge of her vision, and Loren doubled over. Her father squeezed her wrist until the dagger dropped to the grass, then let her follow it. She gasped at the pain in her eye, blinking as she fought to clear her vision.


“Spawn of soiled seed,” said her father. “You have been a plague and a pox upon me since the day you first clawed air into your lungs.”


He kicked her. The hard leather of his boots felt like a tree trunk. She screamed, trying to roll away, but he only kicked her in the back.


She could not see. She could not think. Where was she? Who was this man, and why did he want to hurt her so? Why did some part of her mind scream that he should love her, pick her up and cradle her in his arms and promise to take the pain away? Instead he only gave her more.


Her eyes fell on Xain, who crouched several yards away. The wizard’s lips moved, and his eyes began to glow. He held a hand curled at his side, and Loren saw the flash of fire within it.


“No!” she cried. “Don’t kill him!”


Xain froze. His lips stopped moving, and the fire wisped out in his palm.


The shout drew her father’s gaze. His ugly, beady eyes fell on the wizard, and his lips split in a grimace, revealing spots of blood.


He leapt catlike upon Xain and bore the wizard to the ground. This time he wrapped his hands around Xain’s throat, digging his fingers in deep. Xain’s eyes bugged forth as though they would burst from their sockets. He gasped a phrase, and blue lightning sprang into being, but it vanished before he could unleash it.


Loren’s heart broke. Xain would not have been here if not for her. He might have died on the way to Cabrus, and he might not. But she had brought him to this place and then brought her father’s wrath, and now Xain would die for it.


She could not allow it. She saw the dagger lying near her fingers, and thought of her childish dreams. Nightblade could not allow it.


She fought to her knees. Her bow still hung on her back, and by some grace of the gods its string was whole. Her fingers felt like wood, but she forced them around the bow’s haft and pulled it free. Shakily she brought an arrow to string and half-drew, then took two stumbling steps forward. This time her father had eyes for nothing but Xain.


Loren kicked as hard as she could, and something in her father’s face broke under her boot heel.


He fell away, rolling over and over to put distance between them as he screamed in rage. In a blink he regained his feet, but there he paused. Loren’s arrow rested at full draw, aiming straight for his heart.


Slowly, her father’s hamfist hands came up on either side of his head. For every inch they climbed, the fury in his eyes redoubled.


“No more,” said Loren. It came out as a whisper. “No more will you torment me. I am leaving, father, and I mean never to return.”


“You mean to defy me?” said her father. “You will do your duty as a daughter or—”


She pulled just a little harder on the bow, gaining another inch of draw. Her father’s voice fell to silence.


“You have never done your duty as a father,” she said. “I feel I owe you nothing.”


“You owe me everything,” he said. “I could have killed you in the cradle. I could have killed you when I woke up today, and moved my bowel on your corpse. I made you, and now I see I made you worthless.”


“Then when I leave you shall suffer no great loss,” she said.


She felt that his words should have stung, but she was beyond them. They were only a stronger flavor of the same things he had said all her life. And in this moment, now that another fate beckoned her, she stood under his sway no longer.


Xain had finally regained his breath, and he came to stand at her side. He muttered, and as his eyes glowed white a ball of lightning hovered in his grasp.


“You think you can escape me?” her father said, changing tack. “I learned these lands years before I spilled you between your mother’s legs. Nowhere in Selvan can you hide from me. Ready yourself for sleepless nights by a bright fire. For if you close your eyes in sleep, if for even a moment you let yourself sit in darkness—”


Loren loosed the shaft. It sank into her father’s thigh. He collapsed to the ground without a scream, but with a gut-deep grunt of pain.


“Chase us now,” said Loren.


She turned and walked away from him, stopping for only a moment to retrieve the dagger and replace it in its sheath. She did not turn to see if Xain followed her, but after a moment she heard footfalls behind her.


Her father’s hateful screams followed them for a long while.

Interesting Information about Nightblade



The Nightblade Volumes are a WEEKLY serial — I publish a new 10,000 word episode every Friday at 12:00pm PST. Every eight episodes compose one book, which is published as a complete work in ebook and paperback.


Nightblade is the first book in the series. The second book is Mystic. Those who like Nightblade, and want to keep reading, can go review it on Amazon. If they fill out the form at http://garrettbrobinson.com/free-mystic, I'll send them an ebook copy of Mystic for FREE.


Readers can also subscribe to the series. For ebook enthusiasts, this is THE CHEAPEST way to read! Pay $2.99 a month, and I'll send you an episode every week — TWO WEEKS before it's published to Amazon! It's cheaper than buying the episodes individually, and it's even cheaper than buying the volumes!


You can check that out at http://garrettbrobinson.com/nb-sub


*****


Nightblade is a very special story to me. It comes to me so easily because I feel like I've only recently emerged from my own personal journey into adulthood. Though the setting, the place, and the person are different, this is MY story.


I love that the coming of age story is so universal, that you can put it in any setting and any genre and it still works. It doesn't matter that Harry went to Hogwarts and cast spells (although that was cool). What mattered was that he suffered through what we ALL suffer through — that terrible, wonderful time between childhood and adulthood, when you don't really know what's going on and you're trying to figure it all out.


Loren, the main character of Nightblade, is going through the same thing. Loren has dreams. BIG dreams, dreams she's never given up on no matter what. Her parents have beaten her and told her she's worthless. The world has tried to convince her that her goals are hopeless. But the spark won't die.


I think we've all been there at one point. Haven't you? Some people give up. Who can blame them? It's a cruel world. It's certainly easier to give up, to go with the flow. I legitimately cannot fault someone who chooses to do that.


To be perfectly honest, it's not worth it to keep fighting. You will suffer so much. You will go through so much pain and lose so much that is dear to you. Only the mad even attempt it, because only a tiny portion of them will ever succeed. The rest will die broken and alone in the corners and back alleys of the world.


And yet, we do love the stories about the ones who win.

Interview

When did you start writing?
I began writing as a teenager, scribbling fan fiction from my favorite science fiction and fantasy stories. But it took my mother's passing at the age of 25 to convince me that if I didn't try, honest to God, to make it as an artist, then it would never happen.

I published my first book in December of 2012, and since then I've put out more than a million words in fantasy, sci-fi, thrillers, comedy and horror.

I don't plan on stopping.

What inspires your writing?
I think the most exciting phrase a writer can ever utter is, "Hey, wouldn't it be cool if...?"

Ideas are all around us. Sometimes they come from things we wish we saw in the world more often. Sometimes they're just things that are really, really cool. A girl who sees thoughts when she makes skin contact. A guy who becomes a zombie, but can still think. Kids who become wizards in another world when they sleep. A girl who wants to make it in the big time — but in a fantasy setting.

No idea is a bad story idea. Find out what's important to you, and construct a story around that.

What is the best part about being a writer?
Anyone who's published a book knows what a rush it is to hear from your readers. The best writers write from inspiration. They write the sort of story that THEY would want to read. There's nothing more gratifying than hearing, from a complete stranger no less, that they were personally touched by your book.

Even better is are those who you deeply, truly affect. The best feeling in the world is to hear that a reader can relate to what my character is going through, and that in some small way I helped them through a difficult time. You can't beat that.


Author Bio:



Garrett Robinson was born in Los Angeles, California. Throughout his childhood and into adulthood, he was encouraged to learn by his parents, who not only ensured he had access to thousands of books whenever he wanted, but who traveled with him around the world and helped him do so once he was out in the world on his own. Throughout high school, Garrett excelled in creative writing, churning out millions of words and far surpassing all of his classmates.


After school, Garrett discovered a love of, and has had a budding career in the independent film industry. In today's digital age, however, he has discoverd that new creative models are necessary to succeed. To that end, he has begun turning all of his film ideas into self-published books, in hopes of drumming up support and readership for the stories he has created.


Connect:



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