Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Magic Word...FREE!

As this year draws to a close I want to thank you, my wonderful readers and friends. You've given me so much with your comments and emails, filling me with hope and the drive to continue.

To give something back, I'm offering Raven for free until January 1st on Smashwords!

Click here to download in several different formats

Thank you all for being so awesome!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Winners Announced!

UPDATE - Congratulations to Krysta Banco, the winner of the Holiday Hop Grand Prize of the Kindle Fire.

The Holiday Hop is now over but I hope you're all still enjoying your holidays!

Now for the winners of my own contest:

*pseudo drum roll*

First prize: Two paperback books, My Enchanted Life and Tempest Child, one eBook (coupon from Smashwords) of your choice from anything I've written, and a $25 gift card from Amazon.

The winner is: Pamela Hampton

Second prize: Two eBooks of your choice from my works (coupons from Smashwords)

The winner is: Barbara Battaglia

Third prize: One eBook of your choice from my works (coupon from Smashwords)

The winner is: Elizabeth Hyatt

Congratulations to the three of you and remember that your names will be entered into the Holiday Hop grand prize drawing on Jan 1st for a chance at winning a Kindle Fire!

To everyone who reads this blog, signs up for my newsletter, or cracks open one of my books – I love every one of you. Readers are the passion behind my writing.

Besides, even if you talk behind my back – I still love you. It's publicity, right? J

Thursday, December 15, 2011

We're off and running!

The Holiday Hop starts today! Over 60 authors are participating, each with their own list of goodies, books and gift cards to hand over to you. Some will be running daily contests while others might only post once. Each one is different and full of holiday cheer.

As for me, I will be awarding the following:

First prize: Two paperback books, My Enchanted Life and Tempest Child, one eBook (coupon from Smashwords) of your choice from anything I've written, and a $25 gift card from Amazon.

Second prize: Two eBooks of your choice from my works (coupons from Smashwords)

Third prize: One eBook of your choice from my works (coupon from Smashwords)

The contest will run through Dec 25th and the winners, picked at random by my dogs or Jezebel, will be announced on Dec 26th. In addition, the three winners from this blog will be entered into the Indie Writers Unite grand prize drawing for a Kindle Fire! How's that for a grand prize? The winners from all participating blogs will go into the drawing, so it's in your best interest to visit everyone listed in the blog hop.

Now for the particulars: I'm only requiring one thing to enter my contest. Please join my brand new newsletter. The link is at the top on the right. Don't worry, I won't spam you. You might hear from me three or four times a year with special coupons when a book is released. Of course, you may unsubscribe at any time as well.

So sign up and get hopping! Here is the link to find the other participants: HOLIDAY HOP

Happy holidays to you all!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Holiday Blog Hop runs December 15th - December 25th
Over 60 participants giving away gifts, prizes and goodies, including a grand prize of a Kindle Fire!

Loads of fun to be had for 10 days in a row!

Holiday Blog Hop

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Just when you thought it was safe...

My YA Fantasy, My Enchanted Life, is out!


An American teen finds herself thrust into a world she never knew existed in England's magical community of Wode Gate. While dealing with gnomes, a cranky dragon, murder and mayhem, Emma tries to cope with her unwanted duties as Sentinel and fights to get back home again.

She finds that things aren't always what they seem, people aren't who they pretend to be, and someone wants her dead. The king of the underworld wants her too, but he may be the least of her problems as Emma struggles to control her powers—while losing her heart to a demon.

Where to purchase:

Trade Paperback


Chapter One

One day before my eighteenth birthday. My third day of summer vacation—that lazy rite of passage between high school and college. The only one I'd ever have. Ruined. All because of that private investigator showing up at my door. I never should have let him in—although, technically, my aunt invited him inside.

"Are you Emma Winslow, daughter of Franklin and Anne Winslow?"

"Yes." I didn't like the way his dark eyes tried to bore a hole in my head, like I'd done something wrong. Nothing came to mind, anyway. Maybe this was a prank, courtesy of my friend Jenna.

"And you were born in London, England?" He pressed on, despite my aunt hovering now like a chicken with ruffled feathers.

"Yes, she was," Aunt Martha answered when I didn't reply quickly enough. "What's this all about?"

He flashed a smile full of teeth and reached inside his jacket pocket. I admit I flinched, expecting to be kidnapped or shot or something else straight out of a horror movie. Instead, he pulled out a thick envelope and handed it to me.

"Just confirming your identity for my client. Happy birthday." He turned and let himself out, leaving me to stare at the envelope with some fancy solicitor name printed on the front.

"Aren't you going to open it?" my aunt asked, wringing her hands. Not a good sign.

A little voice in my head told me to burn it and bury the ashes in the backyard. Like a fool, I teased the flap open with fingers that trembled and pulled out the sheets filled with incomprehensible legalese. After reading the first page three different times, while my aunt did a funny little dance next to me, I handed the sheet over to her.

"I think it says I've inherited a house in England." Flipping my long brown hair back over my shoulder, I waited for her to confirm what I'd read.

"What? That can't be right. Your father didn't own any property when he died." Aunt Martha read further. "Oh, it says your father's brother, Albert, died three months ago and left it to you. I didn't know Franklin had a brother."

My father. I didn't know anything about him, except that he was British and died when I was only a few months old. That's when my mother and I left London and came back to Chadsville, Georgia to live close to her family. When she died the following year, my aunt and uncle were left to raise me. An unexpected wave of gratitude passed over me. If they hadn't taken me in, who knows where I might have ended up? I blinked back the tears that threatened to spill and gave my aunt a hug.

"Mercy! What was that for?"

"Nothing. I don't tell you that I love you often enough." And it was true. They were the only parents I'd ever known.

She dabbed at her eyes and patted my shoulder. "Don't start packing for England just yet. We'll talk to your uncle about it when he gets home." She hurried off to the kitchen—no doubt to bake cookies. My aunt's cure for anything that ails you. I hoped they'd be peanut butter chocolate chip.

My uncle had the opposite reaction from my aunt when she thrust the papers in his face that evening. "Well, congratulations. That's quite a birthday present."

"You don't find it the least bit peculiar?" Aunt Martha's eyebrows wiggled up and down as if not sure what position they should stay in.

"Not really. We never knew that much about Franklin or his family. If I were eighteen again, I'd see it as a grand adventure." He gave me a wink and started rooting through the fridge. "Are we having dinner soon? Maybe there's a college nearby you could attend."

Aunt Martha huffed and flounced from the room. Uncle Dan straightened up and looked at her disappearing back. "Did I say something wrong?"

I hid a smile and shrugged. "Dinner's ready. I'll go get her."

The silent dinner that followed left me with time to think. Now that I'd gotten over the initial shock, it did sound like fun. I'd always wanted to do some traveling and using England as a base would be perfect for exploring Europe. My college fund could handle a month over there. Maybe I even had more family in the area that I didn't know about.

Suddenly I couldn't wait for dinner to be over. Jenna had to hear about this. She often had crazy ideas too; she wouldn't think I was nuts for wanting to go. With my uncle backing me up, my aunt would come around. She'd lived in Chadsville all her life. The two-hour drive to Atlanta was the farthest she'd ever traveled.

Not so with my mom—her only sibling. Mom was only my age when she went to London and met my dad. And look what coming back to good old Chadsville did for her—dying while crossing the street. Nope, not for me. I was going to follow my dream before my number was up.

The clang of silverware startled me out of my reverie. I glanced up, shoving my hair out of my face. Aunt Martha uttered a sigh and looked at me.

"You've made up your mind—you're going, aren't you? Just like your mother did."

I smiled, not bothering to conceal my excitement over it all. "Yes, but just for a few weeks. I'll be back before school starts, don't worry."

She nodded and tried her best to give me a smile. It was all the invitation I needed to run around the table and give her a kiss. "Thanks for understanding. I have to go call Jenna and give her the news."

Thoughts crowded my head as I flew up the stairs to my room. What should I pack—oh, and I needed a passport. How long did that take? And there were plane tickets to buy…

My stomach curled into a ball and dinner threatened to come back up. Was I ready to do this? Or was I crazy for even contemplating it? Now that the idea had been planted in my head, the lure of going to England seemed almost irresistible. I had to go.

Stay strong. It's a good thing to do this. My hand shook a little as I punched in Jenna's number. Must be excitement, not nerves. What was there to be nervous about? I was going to England!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Release Day for Raven!

It's release day for my space opera/romance Raven, Book 1 of the Carriena Oracles! This will only be released as an ebook, since it's a novella. The best part? It's only .99!

A woman without love
A man without answers
An Oracle that could kill them both

Raven thought her lonely life as a hardened transport pilot was good enough until she met Mikael, an archaeologist who'd never been off-planet before. After discovering an ancient Oracle left by a mysterious race, their lives become forfeit.

Now they are on the run, falling in love, and trying to unlock the secrets of the gods themselves. As they bounce from planet to planet, searching for answers, death is only one step behind and getting closer.

Where to buy:


Chapter One

Of all the worlds to be marooned on, Algora had to be the worst, as far as Raven could tell. Sure, it had spaceport facilities but she couldn't leave the port. This was a closed planet, its inhabitants subjected to archaic rules and regulations.

And her passenger… Raven ground her teeth. The annoying scientist had left a message for her at the front desk saying he'd be a day late. At least he pre-paid a room for her and he was paying good money to get off this rock. She'd wait for him, even though it irked her to do so.

She scratched her head, fingers grazing the tiny implant behind her ear, and pulled a few long strands of hair forward to cover it. The port's medical facility had offered to remove the link-up to her navigational system but Raven politely declined. Artificial implants were one of the many taboos on this natural world.

Screw them. Her eyes glumly scanned the meager offerings on the menu of this backwater planet. For a pastoral colony, she'd expected the foodstuff to have more variety. At least they had transient spacer accommodations—if you could call a fold-down bunk and sonic-scrubber shower an accommodation.

Staring at the vid-screen on the ceiling while lying on her bunk—the only way to view the shivarking thing—Raven flipped through the channels. Nature shows and religious offerings bombarded her, all designed to promote their way of life. The only thing of interest was the history of the Oracle but Raven didn't care to worship their deity so she shut the vid off and closed her eyes.

Why did her passenger want to get to Trivorn? Of the six planets Terrans colonized in this system over three hundred years ago, that one never became a real colony. Life was so difficult there the people soon abandoned it.

Raven imagined the next three weeks filled with scientific chatter from him and groaned. Maybe she could tell him he had to stay in his room.

Her implant beeped. Ben, her co-pilot, started speaking before she had a chance to acknowledge the call.

"Are you all settled in?" His quirky voice ran through a couple of octaves, making her smile despite their predicament.

"If you can call living in a shoebox settled in. I wish I could have stayed onboard the Vattra with you, blast their rules."

"I'll admit some of us have all the luck."

"Yeah, well, just make sure they don't find you. I don't want to have to pay a shivarking fine on top of everything else."

"I'm a BN-4. Discretion is my middle name." Ben managed to plunge his vocalization into the lowest register of human hearing.

Raven snorted. "Just be careful. Hide or something until we're ready to leave."

"You worry too much. It stresses your delicate human digestive system. I can hear your bowels gurgling over the comlink."

"Quit doing things to give me stress and leave my bowels out of the conversation. You're disgusting." Raven laughed as she disconnected. Leave it to Ben to put a smile on her face.

She left her sorry excuse of a room and headed down to the cafeteria, ordering a casserole that tasted like nothing more than protein paste. From her corner table, Raven watched the other patrons while she forced the bland food into her mouth.

One group sat with military precision, their uniforms clean and crisp. She didn't recognize the insignia patch on the upper right sleeve but they must work for a large freighter. They ate quickly, without any conversation amongst themselves.

The other group sat at the small bar, voices carrying as they laughed and traded insults. One woman and two men, dressed similar to Raven in the unofficial spacer uniform—pants with multiple pockets, black boots, long-sleeve shirt and a vest with more pockets. She wondered if they were haulers or smugglers—or a little of both. Legitimate jobs could be hard to come by out here.

One of the men cast an interested glance her way but Raven ignored him. Casual romps weren't her style and the last relationship she had didn't end well. Flying solo suited her. Nobody to worry about but herself. Getting up from the table, she slid her food tray into the slot by the door and went back up to her cubicle to get some sleep.


The next morning Raven was down in the lobby by sunrise, looking for caffeine to clear the muddle from her mind. A nice-looking man walked by her, carrying two cups of coffee in his hands. He smiled as he passed, his dark blue eyes twinkling in the dim light. Raven surprised herself by smiling back. Too bad he wasn't her scientist. The trip might not totally suck with him aboard. He walked up to the desk while she continued to scan the travelers.

"I'm looking for Raven Daniels. Could you call her room?"

Raven turned at the sound of her name. It was him, Mikael Something-or-other. "I'm Raven," she said and walked over.

"Then this must belong to you." He grinned and handed her a cup. "I'm Mikael Turner. I apologize for not being here yesterday. I stopped in to see my parents and say goodbye."

Raven released the breath she'd been holding, chastising herself for reacting with her hormones. She didn't know anything about this man. He could be married, for all she knew.

"That's okay. I, uh, was expecting someone older." Nice one, Jen. Complete your disgrace by getting tongue-tied. Would you like to kiss him next? "Thanks for the coffee. Are you ready to go?"

He held out his arm. "Lead the way."

They walked in silence toward the pad that would take them to her ship. When they got closer, she called Ben on her comlink. "Start the check, Ben. We're almost there."

"Ben is your pilot?"

"No, I am but with Ben along I don't need any crew." She watched his eyebrows raise.

"I'm impressed. I have a confession of my own to make—I thought you'd be older too."

Raven laughed and relaxed. This guy didn't seem like a stuffy scientist type. Maybe she wouldn't have to banish him to his room after all.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

"Did I Notice Your Book" Blog Hop!

The wonderful Ciara Knight hosts an event every Thursday called "Did I Notice Your Book?" and has turned it into a blog hop for today!
From Ciara's site:
It’s that time of week again. Anyone for a writing experiment?
With all the new tools out there to monitor book sales and blurbs mentioned about their books, I’m going to highlight a new book each week. I’ll post it in the morning. If by the end of the day that author finds her book on this post I want her or him to tell us how they discovered it; word of mouth through the close network of writers, a Yahoo group mention, or through some new fangled Google tool.
Now, how will I choose this book each week? It will be a book that caught my attention. As a reader, I will keep an eye out for something that either provoked me to read the blurb, look at the author’s blog, or purchase said book.
Before I reveal my choice I want to clarify that this author has no idea that I’ve chosen his/her book.
With that in mind, the book I noticed was: Annetta Ribken's Athena's Promise (Aegian Trilogy) Book One. It's Urban Fantasy.
Book description:

"No matter what it takes."

As the front desk manager of a hotel on the edge of Zombietown, Pallas is used to dealing with angry centaurs, surly trolls, and zombie housekeepers. The trouble really starts when one of her guests ends up dead. But that's not her only problem.

A cop with an attitude – can he be trusted to be more than just a pain in her ass or does he have a more sinister agenda?

A new Guest Services Manager, out for her job and ready to sacrifice anyone in his way – what does he really want?

The attractive maintenance guy, endangering the promise she made out of necessity to the Goddess Athena – does he know more than he's telling?

A mermaid diva, whose show at the Sparkling Butterfly must go on – or else.

Pallas needs to find the killer, and fast, or she'll lose her job, her home, and the ragtag family she's adopted out of her crew of "critters".

In the course of the investigation Pallas uncovers connections to a nasty Oddities dealer deep in the heart of Zombietown, forcing her to expose a trauma from her past which could threaten her future. With everyone and everything she loves in danger, the promise made to the Goddess Athena may well damn her if she breaks it, but she is bound and determined to save her friends, her home, and everything she's built.

No matter what it takes.


Two years ago or so, I read a flash fiction piece of Netta's about a mermaid diva in a hotel lobby. It was a great story and the setting so surreal that it stuck with me. I swooned when she told me it was a character in a novel she was writing. Really. Swooned.

I devoured this book! Athena's Promise takes place 20 years after an accident in Atlantis leaves a portal open for all manner of creatures to cross over into our world. The heroine is fun, sassy and kick-butt with an attitude that doesn't quit. The author has a unique voice, full of wit and snap. Her characters and setting are distinctive. Even her cussing is humorous! And don't you want to find out how Medusa fares as the hotel manager?

I'm so happy this is the first in a trilogy and can't wait for the next one to come out. I gave it 5 stars but would have given it more if I could.

Netta, I hope you find your book here today because I'm singing it from the rooftops! It's that good!

Where to buy:


Be sure to stop by Ciara's blog for the links to the other blogs participating or follow the links below. Each one has chosen a different genre. Have fun and shop well!


Saturday, November 26, 2011

Ready, Get Set...Shop!

Looking for a great list of books by indie authors to add to your reading pile or give as gifts? Here are three different ones to get you started:

Only True Magic

Mary Pat Hyland

Melissa Smith

Go shopping. Right now. Really!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Sugar and Spice, Naughty or Nice?

Ready or not, December is almost here and that means awesome happenings for the holidays.

On December 1st, Ciara Knight is turning her weekly "Did I Notice Your Book?" into a blog hop. I'm participating with a review on a certain secret book. Drop by on Thursday the 1st to see which book I choose!

From December 1st – 31st, fab horror writer Erin Cole is hosting a holiday catalog of books to choose from, including my Deadly Intent. If you're interested in being included, go here.

Monday, December 5th, is release day for TWO different books of mine!

My Enchanted Life, a YA fantasy, will be offered in both ebook and trade paperback.

Raven, Book One of the Carriena Oracles, is a space opera/romance novella and will be available as an ebook.

Come celebrate the double release with me and leave a comment for a chance to win an ebook copy of each!

With hardly a chance to catch my breath, I'm also participating in the Indie Writers Unite Holiday Hop, which runs from December 15th – 25th. Prizes and giveaways galore await you on this hop, including here on my blog. Whatever your reading tastes, you'll find plenty of choices for gifts—for yourself and others on your list. Stock up!

Check back often and follow my blog so you don't miss out on any of the fun!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

It Was All A Dream...

As my mind wandered, talking to new characters, a bit of advice popped in that I'd heard long ago. Publishers don't like stories that end up being just a dream.


Can someone please tell me how "It was all just a dream" The Wizard Of Oz is one of the most-loved stories of ALL TIME?

Just wondering...

Thursday, October 27, 2011

You Think You Know Everything About Me?

Come test your Laura knowledge as Cynthia Schuerr grills me (not literally!) over at The ~Heart~ of Writing. Warning - there may be wacky fun involved...or bloodletting. I'm not telling which it is. You'll have to go see for yourself.

Interview at The ~Heart~ of Writing

As always, comments are drooled over.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Knights of the Round Table...

I hope Ciara Knight owns a round table... She does have several Knights who tirelessly read and review novels on her site, table not withstanding.

Knight Laura Diamond is reviewing my novel, Tempest Child, today! Come on by and see what she has to say about it.

Tempest Child review on Ciara Knight's blog

As always, questions or comments are appreciated!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Eighty Nine is here!

Today is release day for a fabulous speculative fiction anthology surrounding the music and events from 1989.

Order from Amazon here

For a special treat, Literary Mix Tapes is previewing 24 of the 26 stories on their website FOR FREE, releasing one an hour. They will only be available to read online for the next 30 some hours, so you have to hurry.

Literary Mix Tapes

I am very proud to have a story in this anthology called Choices. I'd love for you to take a gander and tell me what you think!

Read Choices Now!

Make sure to order your copy today to support these fine authors, who are getting a percentage of each book sold.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Pay It Forward Blog Hop!

The rules of this blog hop are easy...list three blogs that you enjoy reading and share them on your blog. Then visit other blogs that have signed up for the blogfest. Visit as many other blogs as you can and follow them. The last time I looked, over 200 blogs had signed up on the Linky list. You can find it here.

Three blogs I really enjoy:

Straight From Hel

First of all, who wouldn't enjoy a blog called that? Helen is a freelance editor, among many other things, and a hellava blogger as well.

Life on the Muskoka River

Cathy is perhaps the wittiest person I know. She will blog about anything too. Really. Go check her out.

Ciara Knight

Ciara is one of those people who just draws you in and you keep coming back for another fix. She has different days set aside for different features, such as Thursday's "Did I Notice Your Book?" where she picks a book at random and features it without the author knowing.

Of course, there are many more that I follow and love, but three is the magic number for today!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Eighty Nine Anthology Countdown!

What do you get when you ask 26 spec-fic writers to re-imagine 1989, using 26 songs from that year to write from? A fabulous anthology, that's what. Literary Mix Tapes now has Eighty Nine available for pre-order, including my story Choices, with a release date of Oct 25.

Link to LMT's Eighty Nine

1989: a cusp between decades.

The year the Berlin Wall came down and Voyager went up. Ted Bundy and Emperor Hirohito died. The birth of the first Bush administration and computer virus.

In San Francisco and Newcastle the ground shook, in Chernobyl it melted. Tiananmen Square rocked the world and Tank Man imprinted on the international consciousness. Communism and Thatcherism began their decline, Islamic fundamentalism its rise.

It was the year Batman burst onto the big screen, we went back to the future (again) Indiana Jones made it a trifecta at the box office and Michael Damian told us to rock on.

Based on a play list of 26 songs released in 1989, Eighty Nine re-imagines the social, political, cultural and personal experiences at the end of the decade which gave the world mullets, crimped hair, neon-coloured clothing, acid-wash denim, keytars, the walkman, Live Aid, the first compact disc and MTV.

Follow the link to download a sample of stories and enjoy!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Five Shiny Red Stars

A website called Read For Your Future has reviewed Tempest Child and given it 5 red shiny stars! Not only am I thrilled with the review itself, but I love the fact that they donate the books to the local high schools as part of a literacy campaign. What higher compliment could an author get than the chance to be read by thousands of teenagers?

Here's the link to the review:

Read For Your Future

Can I get a squee?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Awesomeness and a Cautionary Tale

I just did a Google search on one of my titles, Realms of the Red Rabbit, and stumbled onto this awesome review! The bad news is it's from last July. At least I noticed it in the same year.

Go check it out. I'm drooling over its goodness.

Chilli Tween Reads

For you writers, it's worth it to do a Google search for titles and not rely on the precarious whims of Google Alerts (like me).

In case you don't own them yet, Realms of the Red Rabbit and Realms of the Red Rabbit-Jake are both free!

RRR - Kindle                                Jake - Kindle
           Nook                                             Nook
           Smashwords                                  Smashwords

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Deadly Intent Review!

Deadly Intent has a review by the fabulous Helen Ginger over at Straight From Hel. If you haven't read her reviews before, you're missing out on some of the best disclaimers on the planet.

She's also a real, live former mermaid - but I'll let her explain that part. I hope you drop by and have a read. I'll wait right here for you...

Deadly Intent Review

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Avoidance, Allowance and Animosity

Issue Three of 5x5 Fiction is here! Twenty-five stories for your reading pleasure, including two of my own, Dating Hell and The Truth About Changelings.

These are short bites of fiction, told in 25 words - 5 sentences of 5 words each. Best of all, it's free! You can view online or download as a .pdf.

5x5 Fiction - Issue Three


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Author Interview at RJ Palmer's Place!

RJ Palmer is featuring my book, Tempest Child, along with an interview. Stop by and see what hits my OCD button!

Confessions of a Wingnut and Science Fiction Junkie

Isn't that a catchy blog name? :)

Friday, September 2, 2011

New Reviews!

A wonderful website called Read For Your Future has reviewed the first two novels I ever wrote, Realms of the Red Rabbit and Realms of the Red Rabbit-Jake, both YA fantasies. What makes the reviewer special is the fact that she donates the books to a local high school library to help promote literacy and uses teenagers to read and write the reviews!

Review for Realms of the Red Rabbit

Review for Realms of the Red Rabbit-Jake

Warning to writers: Yes, I know they have a plethora of misused semicolons in them, but the characters are fun. :)

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A New Sci/Fi, Fantasy, Romance, Space Opera

For those of you familiar with my writing, you know I can't be defined by one genre. I thought I'd share this blurb with you for my upcoming novel.


Jenna thought her lonely life as a hardened transport pilot was good enough until she met Mikael, an archaeologist who'd never been off-planet before. After discovering an ancient Oracle left by a mysterious race, their lives become forfeit.

Now they are on the run, falling in love, and trying to unlock the secrets of the gods themselves. As they bounce from planet to planet, searching for answers, death is only one step behind and getting closer.

What do you think? I'm also going to *gulp* explore religious issues - a subject I've rather skirted around before. Do you give your characters religions in your writing?

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The New Flesh, Year Two

The New Flesh, Year Two is out. The top 50 stories of the website's past year and it's available as a free download! Authors include Erin Cole, Lily Childs, Angel Zapata, Chris Allinotte, Jodi MacArthur, myself, and many more-

The New Flesh, Year Two download page on Goodreads

Happy reading!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Sex with a Highlander

No, not me. My new ebook, Stone of Destiny, has plenty of it though! Yes, it's erotic, but it's an erotic ROMANCE. Never forget that.
This baby has time travel, a pesky Fae, true love, a Scottish warrior...
Did I mention it has sex?
And it has ROMANCE!
And it's only .99!
Escape reality for a few hours.

When Gavin MacKenzie dismisses a Fae from his bed, the vindictive creature tries to destroy the 17th century Scottish warrior by using Abbie Kyle, a 21st century woman, as her weapon. The Fae's plans backfire when they fall in love and she soon retaliates, banishing the woman back to her own century. Are the lovers doomed to live 400 years apart, or can destiny find a way to bring them together again?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Tempest Child Review!

I am honored to have received a wonderful review of Tempest Child! It came from the awesome Helen Ginger at Straight from Hel. If you haven't read one of her reviews before, you've missed out. Not only are her reviews insightful, but her disclaimers are the funniest I've ever seen. Run, don't walk, over there. I'll wait for you.

Tempest Child review

Can I squee now?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Deadly Intent's First Review!

Deadly Intent already has its first review! I'd love to have you go read it. The website is appropriately named too. ;)

Deadly Intent review at Weird Things

Friday, August 5, 2011

Today is the day!

Today is the official launch of Deadly Intent and the FaceBook release party for both myself and Jim Bronyaur with his The Devil's Weekend. Stop by and say hi!

Deadly Intent is 2.99 for ebook and 9.95 paperback


Monday, August 1, 2011

Update on Prophecy Moon

I'm happy to announce (picture me jumping up and down) that Prophecy Moon has made it into the Readers Favorite finals! Not only that, but it also received a 5 star review from them. :)

Beautiful, huh? *cue Snoopy dance music*

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Devil's Weekend

Jim Bronyaur's

Fellow writer and good cyberspace friend, Jim Bronyaur, is releasing his new novel The Devil's Weekend at the same time as my Deadly Intent so we decided to feature each other's offerings today.

This multi-talented man (he's a musician too!) has authored several other stories, including the award-winning serial Pulsate. Go browse around his website (you can also read my first chapter of Deadly Intent over there today) and see what he has to offer.

The Devil's Weekend is available right now as an ebook at Amazon, BarnesandNoble and Smashwords and will soon be out in print.

Here is the first chapter:

Part One: TGIF
He follows her without care. He doesn’t need care, he needs to satisfy the urge raging through his blood. When it hits, he has no choice but to satisfy it.
Behind him the sun hangs low, waiting for the earth to turn just a tiny bit more. He waits for this moment too – no matter the urge, things need to be done in proper order.
In fact, the proper order of things keeps him in the shadow against millions of others. And it has done so for years. The system he follows allows him enjoyment that nothing else could bring – no woman, no material possession.
She turns left, when he expects her to turn right. She’s turned right for the past eleven times he followed her.
This move is something new.
A change.
He does not like change.
A week ago if this happened, he would stop and retract his steps. He would just go home, draw the hottest bath the faucet could spit and soak his body. He would tape a picture of his mother to the wall of the tub and plead to it. For love.
But now, with the urge moving like its own force – like nothing he’d ever experienced before – he can’t stop. Even when he tells his mind to tell his legs to stop, it doesn’t happen. He’s no longer in control. Part of him fears this moment, most of him enjoys it.
He finds himself moving faster.
He turns the corner and sees her.
She’s standing outside a restaurant.
She looks nervous, tapping her foot, arms crossed.
She looks guilty.
The street’s not busy, but not quiet.
Again, he knows in other times he would just walk away.
His eyes scan the scene, faster than anything he could ever understand. He knows he’s not stupid and never was, but when you don’t fit the normal standards of society, it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle of normal and not normal.
A man in a suit stands a few feet away from the woman. The man’s eyes look past her – that’s a good thing. The man has no interest in the woman. This pleases him, as he now finds himself walking towards her. He wants to stop, things were building in the background, the walls beginning to crumble. Then he makes a possible connection, maybe knowing subconsciously it was all going to come to an end soon. So why not try to get the most out of it…
She looks at him. Dead in the eyes. Her eyes open wide. He feels ugly, out of place now. He looks directly to his hands, like he always does when he feels inadequate. His hands are large and misshapen… his left pointer finger stretched longer than his middle finger. His thumb on his right hand is flat from a self inflicted hammer hit when he was a kid. That of course remains as a time of discovery, long before he realized how to take care of his urges.
Upon the sight of his hands, his heart races and anger boils. His brain, heart, and soul remind him that he isn’t like everyone else. Voices scream freak, kill yourself!
Her eyes are still on him. She doesn’t look away.
She knows.
She senses it.
He can’t look away either now, he refuses to show any sign of weakness. He’s in control – even when he’s not.
The woman checks her watch again and then says something to the man in the suit. The man nods and the woman begins to walk away.
She walks fast, close to a jog. She doesn’t even take the time to look back.
He knows now; no matter the urge; no matter the timing; no matter the people, this woman is going to die.
His name is Oliver Ignis and he is a serial killer.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Deadly Intent - First Chapter

Here's a peek at the first chapter of Deadly Intent. I hope you enjoy it! The links to buy are already live under the "Novels" tab at the top.

The girl laid her hand on the table, palm up. Madame Vorchka grasped the delicate fingers. Dark, vile images assaulted her. Cold evil wound itself around her spine. Blood, insatiable longing, dark laughter. She dropped the hand, pictured it dripping with gore for a moment.

She wheezed. Her skin crawled with a thousand invisible insects. "I'm sorry, but I can't get a reading. I'm feeling ill."

As she edged toward her quarters in the back of the tent, Madame Vorchka locked eyes with the girl. The terror built, robbing her of breath. She ducked behind the curtain and hoped the girl never came back.

Chapter One
Jonathon Brier sat in Jeff’s Restaurant, enjoying his bacon and eggs. It was a daily ritual for him in this peaceful town of Wood Park, a chance for him to take a break from the headaches of filling out reports and forms. Not that anything more stressful ever erupted in this sleepy area but, as Chief of Police, he knew it could at a moment's notice.

“You want more coffee?” Marlene poured it without waiting for a reply. The answer was always yes.

“You’re too good to me.”

“Well, just don’t tell your wife I’m enabling your bacon addiction.”

Jonathon winked at her. “Never.”

He took one last gulp of liquid caffeine and got up. “I’ve got to run over to the florist. Today’s Nora’s birthday. I’m going to sneak a dozen red roses into the house while she’s out shopping. That’s her addiction.”

“Which, the roses or the shopping?”

Jonathon laughed. “Both, I’d say.”

“Wish her a happy one for me.”

Nora’s car was in the driveway when Jonathon pulled up. Even better. He could present the flowers to her in person. Their own hedge of rosebushes, her pride and joy, had already seen their last blooms for the year.

She wasn’t downstairs when Jonathon let himself into the kitchen through the back door. He found a vase for the buds and set them on the table next to the piano in the family room, then went upstairs.

He found her on the balcony off the master bedroom, gazing into the stand of trees in their backyard. Jonathon snuck up behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist, giving Nora a kiss on the neck.

“If you’re trying to surprise me, you’ll have to do a better job of being quiet or fix the third stair step that creaks.” She smiled and leaned back into his arms.

“Happy birthday. You’re back early from shopping.”

“I couldn’t carry any more bags.”

She pointed to her purchases lying on the bed. Two small bags rested there. Jonathon chuckled. Always practical, Nora didn’t like spending money on herself.

“What are you doing out here?” he asked.

“I was watching our industrious squirrel population preparing for winter.”

Jonathon could see the small creatures running back and forth amidst the backdrop of trees brilliant in their fall colors.

“It won’t be long now,” she said. “Have you checked the deer feeder lately? I think it might need shoring up. Remember that buck last spring? The one who kept ramming it?”

“I remember. I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet. I’ve been buried in paperwork lately. It seems like my job gets more complicated with each passing week. Maybe I should retire, leave it to the younger generation.”

“Nonsense.” Nora spun around in his arms to face him.

“You love your job. Besides, if you were home every day, you’d be nagging me to fix you unhealthy breakfasts instead of sneaking off to eat them at Jeff’s.” She pointed to a small grease stain on his sleeve. He changed the subject quickly.

“Come downstairs. I have something for you.”

Nora gave him an easy smile. "I have a better idea. Why don't we stay up here for a while?"

"Anything for the birthday girl," Jonathon whispered. The flowers could wait. So could the office.

Mr. Atkins, the teacher coordinating the yearbook, stopped Abbie in the hallway between classes.
“Do you think you could get me some shots of Rob by next week? I’m trying to get the football team layout done by then.”

“No problem," Abbie replied. "I’ll get them done this afternoon if Rob’s free after practice.”

“It’s a pleasure working with you, Abbie. If you only knew…” He stopped, looking embarrassed. “Well, it’s like pulling teeth.”

Abbie laughed, her bubbly personality bringing a smile to his face. “Don’t worry. It will be great. I’d better get to class though.”

She hurried through the corridor as the warning bell rang, feeling sorry for Mr. Atkins. Most of the students lacked any motivation. She wondered if the yearbook would come out on time.

After the final class for the day, Abbie photographed the team while they practiced then Rob and she headed up to the field at the top of the mountain. The plateau was on the edge of the reservation, but the tribe avoided the area. Their legends spoke of a great evil that killed any livestock left there to graze. That left it as a pristine site with a wonderful view of the valley spread out below—a perfect backdrop for photos.

“This is the last time I’ll ever agree to do a photo shoot with you.” Abbie erased the last photo. It was a perfect shot, but Rob had moved at the last moment. Again. “You’ve got to hold still or we’ll be shooting in the dark.”

“I’m trying, but these rocks are uncomfortable.” Rob shifted once more, attempting to find a better position. The booming bass notes of thunder off in the distance diverted his attention.

Clouds were building over the valley. Abby thought they might have to pack up soon to beat the rain. Fall thunderstorms here in the mountains were infrequent, but powerful, often exhibiting brilliant lightning displays. When they hit, driving down the winding curves of this mountain was dangerous.

She focused on Rob in the viewfinder once more, centering on his red jersey. The bright color of his shirt popped against the background.

Another flash stuttered against the hills and Abbie looked up. Ominous clouds painted the sky in dangerous slashes, rippling displays of energy pulsating through them. Lightning spooked her, always had. She didn’t want to be up on this plateau in a storm. There wasn’t any shelter here and too many tall trees.

The next crack of thunder set Abbie’s teeth on edge. Too close. She glanced over at Rob and thought he looked nervous too.

"Maybe we ought to go," Rob said. "I'm not ready to trust your driving skills in a downpour."

Abbie knew he was trying to make a joke but his smile seemed at odds with the rigid tension in his body as he stared at the sky. She started packing her camera equipment in a rush. Rob hopped off the boulder and ran over to help her.

The air sizzled with electricity moments before a blinding flash hit a tree on the far end. The crescendo of noise reverberated not a second later. Abbie shrieked in spite of herself.

“Come on. The boulders will protect us.” Rob yelled to be heard, the sky now throwing bolts with abandon.

They were much too far away from the car to risk making a run for it. After a moment’s hesitation, Abbie grabbed her bags and followed him. At least they’d be away from the trees.

Abbie leaned into Rob’s embrace amongst the dubious shelter of the rocks and tried not to think too much about dying here.

“Have you always been afraid of lightning?” Rob’s effort at a gentle tone was somewhat lost by having to shout above the noise.

She nodded. “That’s how my dad died. He was up on a pole repairing an electrical line when lightning struck it. I guess I’ve always felt like it was aiming at me after that.”

“Don’t worry, we’ll be fine right here. It should move off as soon as the rain cools the air down.”
Abbie didn’t think that Rob sounded very confident, but she would take all of the encouragement she could get.

She noticed carvings on the rock in front of her. It reminded her of primitive symbols found in caves. “What do you think this writing means?”

Rob studied the rock face for a moment before shrugging his shoulders.
“It might have something to do with the tribe avoiding this area. Maybe it’s a warning or something. There’s more over here.”

He moved over a few feet to examine the new find, but Abbie stayed where she was, trying to make herself as small a target as possible.

A sudden light split one of the large boulders, knocking Abbie and Rob backwards while showering them with dust and debris. The two bodies lay motionless under the angry sky while lightning continued to ravage the plateau.

A torrential downpour hit the valley below, taking commuters by surprise. Minor traffic accidents began to accumulate, fender-benders for the most part. While the small police force kept busy clearing those off the street, two cars collided at the corner of Fifth and Main, sending a blue Cadillac into the plate glass window of Fremont’s Grocery store.

Stunned shoppers froze at the sound of shattering glass. The roar of the engine rushed toward them, locking limbs into place with no hope of avoiding the bloodbath. Others ran, adding their screams to the general bedlam and colliding with each other in an effort to escape.

Police units dropped what they were doing and rushed to the scene, finding mayhem as they arrived. The crowded store had victims strewn about, as the heavy car had managed to keep traveling until an end cap finally stopped it. The driver was dead. Some of the casualties had severe trauma, others mostly confined to cuts and bruises.

The store itself was a mess. In addition to broken glass, shopping carts had been scattered and overturned. The broken packages of chips and salsa, catsup and bottles of wine, mixed together in streams to create a food fight scene worthy of a horror movie.

Rescue workers slogged through the food, often slipping on their way to help others, adding themselves to the growing list of victims in the carnage. Ambulances dumped passengers into the hospital’s hallway as fast as they could, running back for another load. Able-bodied wounded who wished to be treated resorted to walking the two blocks under their own power.

Carla tried Abbie’s cell phone again. No answer. That wasn’t like her daughter at all. She looked out the window. The bright stabs of light through sheeting rain made her turn her head away. Something was wrong; Carla could feel it. She called the police.

“Dad, I can’t get though to Abbie on her phone. She went on a photo shoot with Rob and was supposed to be home an hour ago.”

“Carla, I’m sure she’s fine. She’s probably holed up somewhere until the rain slacks off. Maybe she can’t get a signal to call, with all this lightning. I have to go, honey. We have some bad accidents happening right now. If I hear anything, I’ll give you a call right away.”

Seventeen-year-olds being late for dinner weren’t a high priority at the moment but Jonathon felt guilty about the brush-off he’d given Carla. Abbie wasn’t the type to change her plans without calling. Sighing, Chief Brier radioed the units to be on the lookout for Abbie's vehicle. He was glad he'd gone home earlier. It was going to be a long night.

As quickly as it came, the rain dropped off, leaving the streets looking like small rivers. One of the patrol units started cruising the teen hangouts, asking about Abbie and Rob. Someone mentioned the photo shoot at the top of the hill to the young patrol officer. He quickly headed up the mountain.

Abbie's car came into view as Jerry reached the top. Stopping to pull a large flashlight from the trunk, he shouted the teens’ names but got no answer. Smoking trees and shattered rocks leapt in a crazy kaleidoscope through the light’s beam. It looks like the aftermath of a war zone up here, Jerry thought, running his hand through his cropped blonde hair. Something didn’t feel right. He called for backup before moving in.

Picking his way through the jumble of debris, Jerry scouted the area for some time before finding the kids lying under a mass of shattered rock. The beam sparkled against a quartz-like stream of pebbles as he reached for Abbie.

Her pulse was strong, reassuring considering the fact that she was still unconscious. Jerry didn’t dare move her, not knowing the extent of her injuries. He checked on Rob next. The still, cold body confirmed what he already feared. Rob was dead.