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DESERT WOLF by Heather Long

 

Outlaw Wolves & Defiant Hearts!

Sometimes pitiless and cruel, Sutter Butte Alpha Cassius Lucera lives in an ugly world where pack means blood, fights, and hate. To change his pack, he will have to change himself and only one person alive can help him—another pack’s Omega. DESERT WOLF by Heather Long is a story of redemption and fate that shows us how strong the attraction can be when opposites attract. If you enjoyed Motorcycle Man by Kristen Ashley, you’ll get thirsty for Desert Wolf.

Follow the tour on November 24th! Two grand prize winners will receive a $10 digital gift card for Starbucks (Open Internationally) and three grand prize winners will receive a digital copy of a Heather Long backlist of their choosing (Open Internationally).

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November 24th

 

About DESERT WOLF:

Title: Desert Wolf
Author: Heather Long
Series: Wolves of Willow Bend #8
Genre: Paranormal/Shifter Romance
Release Date: November 24th, 2015
Publisher: Self-Published
Print Length: 90K
Format: Paperback and Digital
Print ISBN: 978-1-517315-795
Digital ISBN: 978-1-310000-867

Synopsis:

Cassius, Alpha of Sutter Butte, leads the most ruthless and dangerous pack in the United States. A pack comprised of misfits who didn’t fit in their previous packs, cast offs discarded by their packs and forgotten wolves who rose to create a pack more than a century before in utter defiance of the order of the day. Sometimes pitiless and cruel, he wants more for his people than a yearly bloodbath as they fight for a new place, a better spot in the pecking order. To change his pack, means to change himself and he will find rebellion on all sides, not the least of which is his own defiant heart.

Sovvan Stark, Omega of Delta Crescent, lives a cherished, beloved life in the center of her pack, a delicate and hard won balance. Though she is not the only Omega, she is the most experienced with the tremors of pack upset when power shifts from Alpha to Alpha. When her Alpha approaches her about Sutter Butte’s request, Sovvan considers the matter for several long months. While she might hold within her the key to helping the Sutter Butte Alpha, the undertaking could very well kill her.

Accompanied by a single Hound, Sovvan begins a journey to help Cassius rebuild the foundation of his pack, but first she will have to transform him…

Find out more at:

 

Praise for the Wolves of Willow Bend Series:

“ROGUE WOLF is a fast paced, intriguing look into the world of shifters. Salvatore is old world a bit stodgy and Margo is very much new world and on top of that a lone wolf and Enforcer. How is it possible that these two could be mates? In author Heather Long’s vivid and fun imagination it’s very easy.” — Fresh Fiction

“BAYOU WOLF is in a word … amazing. All the reader can do is hold on for the ride and enjoy the fireworks.” — Fresh Fiction

“If you love sexy wolf shifters, sweet love stories and action then you have to pick up UNTAMED WOLF by Heather Long”. — Annetta Sweetko, Fresh Fiction

“It is a great story about finding a place to belong and the love that can follow if you allow it.” – Hart’s Romance Pulse reviewing RIVER WOLF

 

My Review

When I first started reading this book, I was a bit confused as to who all the characters were, but as I read on everything, and everyone, fell into place.

The book is well written and moves along at a good pace, with plenty of action and adventure.

The characters are interesting and well fleshed out. Their interactions and emotions are believable, and this made me care about what happened to them.

It’s an entertaining read, which can be read as a stand-alone story, despite being part of a series.

I haven’t read any of the previous books in the Wolves of Willow Bend series, although I do now want to. I’d like to know what happened before.

I received an eCopy of Desert Wolf from Barclay Publicity in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

Read an Excerpt from DESERT WOLF

Heat rolled in waves from the blacktop of the old highway. Around him, the desert sprawled in its painted glory, seemingly melting into the horizon where it kissed the sky. The colors streaked past him as he accelerated, blowing past the old trading posts and bypassing the interstate with its smoother surface and promise of civilization in the distance. If one sought to journey through the decades, the old highway east of Holbrook was the place to start.

Sweat slicked his back beneath the leather jacket and the motorcycle vibrated between his thighs. Clocking over a hundred, he barely noticed the machine’s growl echoing his wolf’s. Cassius Lucera del Alba, Alpha of Sutter Butte squinted to catch sight of the town he sought ahead.

Though town was a generous description for the collection of ramshackle structures—of which a filling station with a decrepit market attached and a lone bar were clearly detailed. Time hadn’t forgotten the town, it had left it in the dust by doing a hundred and sixty and never looked back. If the location had a name, no map detailed it, not even Google. The poor bastards didn’t even have a ghost to call their own.

Though they might when he finished.

He didn’t slow until he reached the main drag, all eighty-five feet of it and parked his bike in front of the bar. A handful of vehicles were scattered amongst the cracked pavement and gravel. Three he recognized, two he didn’t. Like the bar, the cars were in sad shape and far more popular in earlier decades. Killing the engine, he dropped the kickstand and slid off his baby. Road dust coated her paint and chrome. With a stroke of his gloved hand over the seat, he promised her a bath later.

Leaving the bike, he strode toward the building. No one moved outside, but one wolf stood inside the filling station. He was a smart wolf, he’d spotted Cassius, yet didn’t reach for a phone or make any move other than retrieving his newspaper and flipping it open.

Inside, the cool air rushed over his sweaty face like a sweet kiss. The scents of stale beer, body odor, remnants of the blood spilled throughout the years, and fear stained the experience. The population of the bar—easily a dozen wolves though Cassius scented at least four more in the back—glanced up from their places scattered around the room. Three played pool, four others huddled around a card game while the rest sat in various spots including two at the bar drinking. A couple in the corner paused with her hand down his pants. The bartender—a tall, broad wolf with a balding pate and a world-weary expression raised his eyebrows in silent inquiry. “Beer. Cold.” Cassius said, and the bartender nodded. A moment later, he set a tall bottle of Corona on the weathered bar top. The sides frosted and a hint of vapor escaped the top. Condensation formed almost immediately on the sides, slicking along the glass in rivulets.

Stripping off his fingerless gloves first. Cassius set them on the bar. Next, he peeled off his jacket. The old leather moulded him perfectly after the many years he spent wearing it. Only after setting it on the bar next to his gloves did he peel off three one hundred dollar bills and lay them next to the bottle. The bartender didn’t say a word as he took the bills, tucked them into his pocket then locked his register and exited through the double doors behind the bar.

Leaning against the aged wood, Cassius swept the room with his gaze. “If any of you are still sitting on your asses, disobeying the direct orders I sent out when I finish this beer, I’ll kill you.” He didn’t raise his voice. Shouting accomplished nothing. Yelling indicated the battle was lost before it began.

Chair legs scraping across the floor splintered the silence. The couple in the corner disengaged. The she-wolf grabbed her purse as she stood. Boots striking the floor punctuated her exodus. No sooner did the door slam shut behind her than the four wolves playing cards toss them down, abandoning their game. The men muttered, but they divvied the pot, then bowed their heads to him one at a time before hurrying out.

Tipping the bottle up, he took a long pull of the cold drink. It soothed his parched throat. One of the pool players threw down his stick. One of the wolves tried to stop him with a hand on his arm, but he shook it off. Then like the other wolves before him, he hurried out the door.

From nearly twenty to only ten—behind feet stomped on the stairs followed by another door slamming. Make that eight. One of the upstairs wolves strode into the bar, and stood in the center of it. Surprise filled his scent at the emptiness in the room. The others waited, their attention divided between Cassius and Finch.

Stupid fucking name for a wolf. Another long pull from his beer, and Cassius was three quarters finished. One by one he met the gazes of the wolves around the room. The smarter ones lowered their eyes immediately, the dumbasses fought to hold his gaze—even Finch.

Focusing on him last, Cassius studied him. Fresh beads of sweat began to trickle along Finch’s cheeks. The wolf swore, then stomped out and slammed the door with enough force, one of the hinges cracked.

Then there were seven.

About Heather Long:

852365National bestselling author, Heather Long, likes long walks in the park, science fiction, superheroes, Marines, and men who aren’t douche bags. Her books are filled with heroes and heroines tangled in romance as hot as Texas summertime. From paranormal historical westerns to contemporary military romance, Heather might switch genres, but one thing is true in all of her stories—her characters drive the books. When she’s not wrangling her menagerie of animals, she devotes her time to family and friends she considers family. She believes if you like your heroes so real you could lick the grit off their chest, and your heroines so likable, you’re sure you’ve been friends with women just like them, you’ll enjoy her worlds as much as she does.

Connect with Heather:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

Interview with Heather

 

Before we get started on the questions, can you tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m a mother, a pet owner and a student of life. I studied journalism, psychology and business in school and I have degrees in two out of three of those subjects. I write because I can’t not write and every book is a passionate love affair for me and every time I type “the end” it’s a bittersweet moment.

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?

Honestly, I think it became my passion with the first book I ever sat and “read” all by myself. My grandmother read to me for years. She used to read Harlequin romances to me because she didn’t like picture books. As I learned to read on my own, I gobbled up everything from picture books to my first chapter books to Tom Swift and Trixie Belden. I got lost in their worlds and I wanted to get lost in my own. After my daughter’s birth, I went back to school and decided to make my dreams a reality.

What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?

Desert Wolf is my latest release. It’s the 8th full novel in the Wolves of Willow Bend and the 12th tale. It was actually inspired by the moment I met Claire in Wolf Next Door and Cassius’ subsequent appearance in Bayou Wolf. I really wanted to tell his story.

Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

Cassius is a hard ass. Seriously, he is brutal and tough. He does not hold back in fights and he doesn’t try to pretend to be understanding, yet at the same time, he is utterly devoted to his pack. He wants the best for them—no matter what it costs him personally.

Can you tell us anything about any of your current work(s)-in-progress?

I am working on A Man Called Wyatt which is the eighth and final book in the Fevered Hearts series. I love returning to this paranormal historical western world from the cowboys to the horses to the epic feel to the powers. It rocks.

What are the hardest and easiest parts about being a writer?

Hardest part? Edits. You have to be willing to read, reread, revise, read, and revise over and over. The shine you feel for the story can get lost in the polishing.

Easiest part? Losing myself in the story. I love writing. It’s my joy.

Do you ever get writer’s Block, and do you have any tips on how to get through it?

Writer’s block is a state of mind. I rarely ever encounter it, usually if I am stuck on a scene or a book it’s because I missed something earlier in the manuscript. Worst case scenario, I get up, and clean my house and dance to some music, and then usually it’s enough of a mental break to dive back in.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Don’t give up. Ever. Keep writing. All the time. Take classes and learn. But write like you mean it. Write for yourself. For me, writing is a lot like working out, the more you do, the stronger you become.


Other Books in the Wolves of Willow Bend Series:



WOLF AT LAW

Prequel is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | ARe

WOLF BITE

Book 1 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | ARe

CAGED WOLF

Book 2 is available for pre-order at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks ARe

WOLF CLAIM

Book 3 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks ARe

WOLF NEXT DOOR

Book 3.5 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | ARe | Kobo | iBooks | Google Play

ROGUE WOLF

Book 4 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks ARe

BAYOU WOLF

Book 5 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks ARe

UNTAMED WOLF

Book 6 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks ARe

WOLF WITH BENEFITS

Book 6.5 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks 

RIVER WOLF

Book 7 available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | ARe

SINGLE WICKED WOLF

Book 7.5 is available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | ARe | iBooks 

 

 

Scorned by Andrew Hess

 


author
Andrew Hess is a resident of Long Island New York who likes to spend much of his time traveling between Long Island, New York City and the Dutchess County areas. In 2011, he debuted with his first book Chamber of Souls, a small book of free verse poetry which depicted the struggles of a man who thought he had everything in the world only to feel like he lost everything after a rough break-up. In 2013, Andrew debuted his novel The Phoenix Blade: Project Justice; the first in The Phoenix Blade series.

Andrew is also a blogger at TheWritersRevolution13.blogspot.com where he interviews and promotes other authors in order to assist indie authors get more exposure. Andrew is also a frequent guest on the Anthony Charles Podcast, a show dedicated to creative professionals as they give insight into their works and the lives they lead; guests have included authors, comedians, musicians, stuntmen, actors and producers.

 

This action packed thrill ride will leave you on the edge of your seat.

 


What do you do when your biggest case has come to an end? Stuck with mandatory desk duty, Detective Ali Ryan’s life as she knows it, is over. Six months without any action brought out a hunger to get back in the field. What she got, was much more than she bargained for.

The body of Blake Ambrose, one of the best defense attorneys in Dutchess County, has washed up on the shores of the Hudson River. Is this the case that will get her back on her feet?

Or will it end up being her last?

Purchase your copy here

 

 

Interview with Andrew Hess

When did you start writing for publication, what made you decide to put your work out there to be read by others?

I decided I wanted to be an author back in 2005 but did not publish my first book until 2011. At first I wanted to write because I wanted to be rich and famous. But I learned quickly the love of writing in itself and sharing my thoughts, my experiences and my world with whoever decides to read my books was more rewarding. My first book was called Chamber of Souls, a book of free verse poetry that chronicled a man who had hit rock bottom and was forced to fight a journey to find himself. It was meant to help me through a dark time, but it was relatable to many others.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I never really consider anything I do a quirk. I guess the only thing I’d consider a quirk is my process of coming up with ideas. Typically I get my ideas from my dreams, but they appear in my mind at the most random times as well.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?

No, for the longest time I figured I would be a pro wrestler. It wasn’t until 2001 that I ever considered writing any kind of book and didn’t actually start the process until 2005.

For those of us who are thinking of reading your book, could you tell us what to expect?

Scorned has action, romance, and suspense, and that’s just between the cops. Plus, there’s a killer on the loose. I can’t say a lot without giving too much away. But Scorned gets a lot more intense than its predecessor Campus Killer. But as always, Expect the Unexpected.

What about your previous books, will you tell us a bit about them, please.

The Phoenix Blade Series currently has three books available. It’s a government conspiracy book where the government coerces three ordinary college kids to become hired hitmen.

Campus Killer is the prequel to Scorned where a psycho killer is attacking students at a local college campus, making their deaths look like suicides.

Trapped Inside is a fictional book depicting the life of a man fighting to overcome his agoraphobia

Chamber of Souls is a free verse poetry book that depicts the life of a man who feels like he lost everything in life and now fights to find himself.

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

Scorned makes my eighth published book. Scorned and Trapped Inside have been my favorite to date. Trapped Inside was a way to bring attention to the difficulties one faces with social disorders, most notably agoraphobia. I also love scorned because it is the continuation of my detective series and that is something I always wanted to write.

Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?

Occasionally I do. Most of the time I hear that they like the book or never saw the twists coming. Some have given me criticism which I take into account and apply it to my writing.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I like to watch movies, play video games, read, shoot pool, go swimming, and I love to cook.

If you were a superhero, what would your name be? What costume would you wear?

I guess I would have to be the Phoenix. It would be a crimson body suit with red, orange and yellow wings.

 

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Official Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/852524024860766/

 

 

Slater’s Leverage by Claudia Shelton

SR_BlitzBadgeAn agent is assigned to protect the only woman he ever loved and deserted, while he continues to hide the secret involvement of his family in her parent’s death in Slater’s Leverage by Claudia Shelton

Follow the blitz from November 9th to the 13th! One grand prize winner will receive a 7” WiFi, 8 GB Kindle Fire (US Only)! A second place winner will receive a $15 Starbucks Gift Card and third place winner a $10 Amazon Gift Card (US Only).

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SlatersLeverage_Cover

Title: Slater’s Leverage
Author: Claudia Shelton
Series: The OPAQUE Task Force
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Pub. Date: November 10, 2015
Format: Digital eBook
ISBN: 978-0-9968226-0-2

Synopsis:

Protector Agent Josh Slater has spent years working for the secret government-sponsored agency known as OPAQUE. All the while hoping to find the man who paid his father to bring down a plane killing the then head of OPAQUE. Now, Josh’s new assignment brings him back face-to-face with the one woman he ever deserted. His life would have been easier letting Mackenzie continue to hate him for leaving, but she’s been targeted as leverage and he’ll do anything to insure her survival. Even face her anguish over his family’s shame.

Mackenzie Baudin has been over Josh Slater for years, so the idea of her uncle sending him to be her protector meant only a slight hiccup in her steel resolve emotions. But her uncle’s promise that within the next twenty-four hours she would know the complete truth about her life hit her like the plane crash ten years ago. The day her mother and father were killed.

Find out more at: Goodreads | Amazon

Excerpt from SLATER’S LEVERAGE

“What’s going on?” Josh asked his boss.
“OPAQUE intercepted Coercion Ten’s Target List again last night. My name’s still there. So’s yours.”
“Sounds about right.” Most every OPAQUE agent had their name on the enemy’s list. If not, then Josh figured you needed to work a little harder at pissing them off.
“They’ve added a new column. Titled it—Leverage. There’s nothing in that column next to yours. Next to mine is one name.”  Drake speed dialed his phone again. “Mackenzie Baudin.”
Josh’s chest tightened as if a belt had been notched three sizes too small. Not only was Macki an ex-cop, wealthy hotel owner, and the boss’s niece, she was also the only woman Josh had never shook from his system. The idea she was a target in the underbelly game of life and death slapped him upside the head like a brick.
The two men shared a glance, then looked away. He’d controlled his breathing. Controlled his expression. But he’d felt the flare of his nostrils. Coercion Ten had gone too far this time. There’d already been too many deaths in Macki’s family.
“Do you think it’s real?” Josh asked.
“All the signs point that direction. I’ve been trying to reach Mackenzie all day.” The corner of Drake’s right eye twitched. “All I get is her damn voice mail.”
“She’s probably just busy. You know, running a high class hotel isn’t all glamour and glitz.” Hearing the words come out of his own mouth didn’t make Josh feel any better.
Drake shot him an evil-eye look. “Don’t give me that bull. You and I both know this is damn serious.”
Josh had to agree. When someone was targeted by Coercion Ten, every hour, every minute, every second counted. He nodded.
“They’ll try to break me and OPAQUE by targeting her.” Drake paused. “We can’t let that happen.”
“You can count on me. What’s my assignment?”
His boss’s expression blanked, the look he always got when he was torn on which way to turn. Torn between going with his gut or over thinking the situation. Josh knew the look. Not only from Drake, but from himself as well.
Squaring his shoulders, Drake rose to his feet. “Bottom line, I need you to go to Riverfalls, Illinois and protect Mackenzie.”
“No.”
“Yes.”
“Get this straight, old man. There’s no way in hell I’m going back to my hometown.” For years Josh had accepted every assignment. Every duty. Every dirty job out there. All for OPAQUE. All to pay back the debt he felt he owed. But the old man had stepped over the line this time. “You don’t know what you’re asking me to do, sir.”

About Claudia Shelton

Award-winning author Claudia Shelton could write her name before the first day of school, but now she writes romantic suspense and contemporary romance, all with sexy alpha heroes and women strong enough to love them. She also presents workshops on everything from character development to networking to the ins-and-outs of being a new author.

Claudia’s debut novel, Risk of a Lifetime, released to 5-star reviews, reached Amazon’s Best Sellers Romance Series Top 100 and was named one of eBooks Galore top reads for 2014. She is also a two-time Daphne Du Maurier (Unpublished) finalist for excellence in mystery. Her new book, Slater’s Leverage, will be available November 2015.

Shelton is a member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), MORWA (Missouri RWA), Sisters in Crime, St. Louis Writers Guild, Missouri Writers’ Guild, and Saturday Writers.

For more information about Claudia and her books, visit http://www.claudiawriting.com

Connect with Claudia at: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon | Pinterest | Google+

Interview with Claudia Shelton

Claudia Shelton- SLHi Claudia, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Before we get started on the questions, can you tell us a bit about yourself.

On a personal note, I enjoy anything to do with boating, swimming, fishing, etc. And walking through the leaves in the fall, whether it be in the woods or just through the neighborhood, is a pure joy. Some of my favorite places to travel are: New York for the museums, Broadway shows and excitement; Washington, DC for the history and excitement; and any place with water for the sun, relaxation and excitement. Do you notice my tendency for excitement?

Slater’s Leverage is Romantic Suspense isn’t it, What draws you to this genre -do you write other genres?

I write alpha heroes and the women strong enough to love them, but since I can get easily bored I need to have a touch of suspense and adventure mixed into their stories. In fact, my books could be considered crossovers for suspense at times. I do have the beginning of a family saga, plus a couple of completed Contemporary Romance, also. Right now though, readers seem to like my romantic suspense voice.

You’ve self-published Slater’s Leverage, how has *writing and self-publishing* changed the way you read?

Whether working with my publisher or doing a self-pub, my TBR pile has always been varied in genres and publishing avenues. I like what I like in reading, but am open to a new voice, a new author, and sometimes even a new sub-genre.

Can you tell us about Slater’s Leverage, and what inspired you to write it?

Short version—Ultimately, what if your past had been a lie?

Long version—Slater’s Leverage is a fast paced, second chance, romantic suspense that ranges from the gritty, anything’s for sale, D Street atmosphere, to the luxurious penthouse in Hotel MacKenzie that the heroine owns. The story allows the reader to see that sometimes being willing to give up your own happiness for what’s best for another, can be the true meaning of love. Of course, coming back to protect the one you love with your life, is the ultimate for a happily ever after ending.

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer to just see where an idea takes you?

I start with an idea or a hero, and work from there. Yes, I have a brief floating outline to begin with, then about half way through, I plot out the remainder of the book. There are times I write the ending when I’m only a few chapters into the manuscript.

Can you tell us anything about any of your current work(s)-in-progress?

I have two books in the works. One is the second in the Risk series and will be Betsy’s story. And the other work in progress (in my plotting mind) is for the second in the OPAQUE Task Force series. You meet that book’s hero in Slater’s Leverage, but I’m not telling you which man he was. 

There’s also a future series in contract talks with a fantastic publisher, but I can’t expand on that at the moment.

When you consider your future, what would you like to make happen for you?

My main priority is family, friends and making time to enjoy life—travel, vacations, music, art, being outdoors and on and on and on. That is followed by my desire to keep writing. There are so many heroes nudging me to write their stories, and so many heroines looking for the right hero to love—my goal is to put them together in my books. Along the way, I’d love to become a NYT, and USA Today, Best Selling Author. Plus, I’m always happy to meet new readers and authors along the way.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

First, thanks so much for having me on your blog, Rainne.

Here’s a little about my writing and books, I began seriously writing (and learning the craft) about eight years ago. My debut novel, Risk of a Lifetime, released April 2014 to five star reviews, and I’m working on a second book in that Risk series which should be out in 2016. I’m very excited about my new romantic suspense and first book in the OPAQUE Task Force series—Slater’s Leverage—which releases November 10. I hope my readers are swept away by Josh and Mackenzie’s story, and are excited by the fast paced suspense. And, btw, I love my cover! How about you?

I love the cover, Claudia.
One last question before we go. Which famous person, living or dead would you like to meet and why?

Audrey Hepburn – With everything to talk about from her great acting to her charity involvement to those fabulous sunglasses, I think it would make for a wonderful get-together over lunch.

Thank you for joining me, Claudia. Good luck with the release of Slater’s Leverage and your future releases.

Hidden Impact by Piper J. Drake

HiddenImpact_banner

An aloof bodyguard and mercenary puts his heart on the line in HIDDEN IMPACT, the first book in the Safeguard series by Piper J. Drake.

Fans of Marie Force’s Fatal series or Laura Kaye’s Hard As It Gets, will love this brand new romantic suspense series.

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Synopsis:

HiddenImpactHe’s not the hero she’s looking for…

As part of the elite Centurion Corporation team, military-veteran-turned-mercenary Gabriel Diaz is a natural defender. He’ll do anything to ensure a mission is successful. Anything but get emotionally invested—he learned the hard way that can be deadly. Easy bodyguard jobs in between the more challenging missions are all he’s interested in now.

Maylin Cheng is desperate and running out of time. Her younger sister has gone missing but no one seems to take her concern seriously. Her last hope lies in asking an aloof bodyguard for help. He dismisses her outright, but all that changes when she is almost killed in a not-so-accidental hit-and-run right before his eyes.

As Maylin leans on Gabriel, she begins to rely on him for more than just her safety. But as their attraction grows, so does the danger surrounding them. When the elaborate web they’re trapped in unravels, Gabriel will do anything to protect them. Even if that means putting his heart in the crosshairs.

Book one of the Safeguard series

Get More information at: Goodreads  | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iTunes

 

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The Author:

Piper_Drake_author

Piper J. Drake (or “PJ”) began her writing career as “PJ Schnyder” writing sci-fi & paranormal romance and steampunk. She has recently received the FF&P PRISM award for her work as well as the NJRW Golden Leaf award and Parsec award.

Now, PJ is exploring the complexity of romantic suspense, incorporating her interests in a mixed martial arts and the military into her writing.

 

Interview with Piper J. Drake:

Hi PJ, thank you for joining us today, could you tell us a little about yourself please?

Hai! I’m Piper J. Drake, author of romantic suspense and lover of cupcakes!

Ahem. It’s always hard to know what little bits about myself would be interesting as opposed to not. A few things about me:

  • I’m a dog and cat lover. I used to have 3 dogs and a ninja kitty but as time has gone by, all but the ninja kitty have passed away.
  • I travel about 85% of my time for my day job and love sharing my travel hijinx with my FB, Twitter, and Instagram followers
  • I love to eat and I share my restaurant adventures during my travels via Yelp and TripAdvisor

That’s the snapshot. I hope those were some fun facts about me that aren’t necessarily in a bio.

 

What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?

HIDDEN IMPACT is a romantic suspense with inspirations from the stories my military veteran friends have told me and influences from my growing up Asian American.

 

What about your previous books, tell us a bit about them and how we can get our hands on them.

I’m previously published as PJ Schnyder and have several science fiction and paranormal romance books available.

http://pjschnyder.com/blog/books/

 

What are the hardest and easiest parts about being a writer?

Time management is probably my biggest challenge as a writer. From a writing perspective, there’s always more stories I want to write and more ideas than I have time to write them. And then there’s all the other things a writer needs to do to make a writing career successful from social media to marketing to administrative work to behind-the-scenes shenanigans. It’s a lot to do and making sure it all gets done is always a work in progress.

I’m not sure there are easy parts about being a writer, but there are joyous parts that are easier because I take joy from them. The actual writing, editing, and reading my work (sometimes for revisions and sometimes for audio recording) are incredibly fun experiences. So dedicating energy to them is a pleasure.

 

Who or what has helped you become a better writer over time?

The writing community, both online and in person, has been integral to my development as a writer over time. There are countless resources online. To name one, Miss Snark’s First Victim (http://misssnarksfirstvictim.blogspot.com/), is a fantastic community for writers to learn and get constructive feedback without being overwhelmed.

In person, meeting fellow authors has been invaluable. It’s a great thing meeting nifty people, being inspired by the awesome projects they are working on, and then going out yourself to do nifty things.

 

When you consider your future, what would you like to make happen for you?

I would like to build a solid writing career sharing stories my readers enjoy.

Simple, but there it is.

 

Where can we find you to tell you how amazing we think you are?

Play Find the Piper around the Internet for insight into her frequent travels and inspirations for her stories.

PiperJDrake.com
Facebook.com/PiperJDrake
Twitter @PiperJDrake
Instagram.com/PiperJDrake
YouTube.com/ PiperJDrake

 

And finally… If you were ever stranded on a deserted island what would you miss and which three books would you take along?

I’d miss the variety of food to be explored in traveling all around the world.
The books I’d take along? Tough choice! Here are three I find myself going back to re-read over and over without getting tired of them:

  • The Ship Who Searched by Anne McCaffrey
  • Queen of the Darkness by Anne Bishop
  • When Demons Walk by Patricia Briggs

 

Thanks again PJ. It’s been great talking to you. 🙂

 

Connect with Piper at: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Google +  | GoodReadsYoutube

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Excerpt from Hidden Impact:

“What you need to do is hear me out.” Steel edged her voice now, and maybe a bit of desperation.

It was the former, not the latter, that made him take a real look at her.

Her eyes caught him first. Deep emerald green. Shocking, actually, set in a delicate Asian face framed by a cascade of hair so black the lighting caught blue highlights. Her features were naturally beautiful, accented with a minimal amount of makeup. Very different from the majority of the people in attendance, regardless of gender.

Color leached from her face as she must have realized she had his full attention. But she didn’t back away or break eye contact. Good for her. Lesser men had balked when Gabe had stared them down.

“My little sister is missing.” The edge was gone from her words but the desperation was still there.

Anger washed away. Damn. “I’m sorry, miss. But the police are the people to contact.”

Political targets, reporters and prisoners of war were the kidnap victims private military might be contracted to locate and retrieve. The kind of people held for ransom in places so far off the radar, even sunlight might not find them. And those weren’t his team’s specialty.

The woman in front of him was a normal civilian. Willowy, slender. The thought of a little sister conjured up images of some tiny waiflike kid. He and his partners were heavy hitters, not the kind of people you sent in to do anything but cause strategic destruction. They went into hot spots overseas and did the things politicians didn’t admit to knowing about at these glitzy events, things a US uniform wouldn’t be doing. Delicate, gentle—the sort of handling a traumatized girl retrieved from a kidnapping situation would need—was not their forte.

The older sister shook her head. “I’ve spoken to the police and the US Embassy. No one will do anything, not yet. And by the time they believe something’s actually wrong, I might never find her.”

Missing persons cases were tough. She was right about the time crunch. There was only a short window before the abducted was more than likely dead. Considering what could have already happened, death might not be the worst thing either.

Definitely not going to add to what this woman was already imagining. Hopefully she didn’t know what could happen.

“You’d do better hiring a private investigator.” He drew his eyebrows together, tried not to let the urge to squirm under her very direct stare show. Damn. Give him vapid groupies and a clueless entourage and he had no problem staring them down. This woman, it was like she could see straight through him and know how much he didn’t want to cause a scene at this very moment. There was nothing good he could do for her.

 

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TROLL by Ashley Harris

Troll_BlitzBadge

TROLL by Ashley Harris

Seductive teens & trolls meet #Gameofthrones!

Get ready for a rollicking action and adventure story set in a magical world where
a creature emerges from thousands of miles underground, seeking revenge, treasure,
and a key that once belonged to an old enemy. Fans of the Lion, the Witch,
and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis and The Vampire Diaries  by J. L. Smith will be
enchanted by this new YA novel selected by Kindle Scout readers for publication!

Follow the blitz and enter to win great prizes!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Visit all the blogs participating in the blitz for more chances to win!

October 26th

Brooke Blogs Author Interview

My Midnight Fantasies Spotlight + Excerpt

Reading In Wonderland Spotlight + Excerpt

T&L Book Reviews Review + Guest Post

October 27th

Deal Sharing Aunt Author Interview

Opinionated Cupcakes Spotlight + Excerpt

Just Books & Rainne’s Ramblings Author Interview

October 28th

Nicole’s Book Musings Spotlight + Excerpt

Mama Reads Hazel Sleeps Review + Guest Post

Becky on Books Spotlight + Excerpt

Kindle and Me  Review + Guest Post

Book Briefs Review

October 29th

Oh My Growing TBR Spotlight + Excerpt

Jeri’s Book Attic Review

Evermore Books Spotlight + Excerpt

One Book Two Review

October 30th

Crystal’s Chaotic Confessions  Spotlight + Excerpt

Mikky’s World Of Books Spotlight + Excerpt

Happily Ever Chapter  Spotlight + Excerpt

Kayl’s Krazy Obsession Author Interview

Miranda’s Book Blog Author Interview

 
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CJY-j-dUcAE90F3About Troll:

Title: Troll

Author: Ashley C. Harris

Author Location: FL, United States

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal Fantasy

Release Date: October 6, 2015

Words: 319 pages

Publisher: Kindle Press

Format: Digital eBook

AISN: B013VAU5KA

 

Synopsis:


At the age of sixteen, Abby is undergoing major household changes. Her mom is getting ready to remarry and her new step-brother is driving her insane. She is just trying to keep herself busy with school and her part-time job when a most deliciously handsome stranger moves to her little seaside town and won’t leave her alone.

New arrival Wilhelm is unlike any other student at Abby’s school. His emerald eyes and tattooed body don’t truly reveal what he really is: a creature emerged from thousands of miles underground, seeking revenge, treasure, and a key that once belonged to an old enemy – a key Abby wears suspended from a chain around her neck. Why she has it is a mystery that Wilhelm will need to solve, and fast, in order to defeat a powerful mortal adversary.

As an attraction between Abby and Wilhelm develops, more creatures like Wilhelm are drawn from beneath the ground to Abby’s town; wreaking havoc as they offer Abby’s classmates the fulfillment of their deepest desires. Will Abby and her new family survive as a game of magical warfare is unleashed? Her ability to reverse Wilhelm’s bargain depends on it.

Available at Amazon.

 
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Interview with Ashley C. Harris

Ashley C. Harris Summer 2015 New Author PicHi Ashley, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Hi Rainne, I’m an author and film director from south Florida who loves everything sci-fi and fantasy related.

 

Troll is YA/paranormal fantasy .. What draws you to this genre – do you write other genres?

Since I was a child I’ve loved reading and writing sci-fi and fantasy novels; stories where anything can happen. In addition to writing YA sci-fi and fantasy, I also write Romance, NA, and contemporary work as well.

 

Tell us about your writing routine; what’s a typical writing day for you?

I used to be a night time, midnight writer. But now that I work behind the scenes in the news and media field, my writing routine varies daily. Most of the time when I get home from work I write for two hours, take a break to exorcize and get errands done, then write for another two to three hours later that day.

 

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?

I think I actually learned more during the journey to getting this novel published, compared to when I first wrote the novel. TROLL was actually written a few years ago, along with book two in the series, and has been a project in the making for a long time. What I learned most about this project is to just never give up on your dreams and plans no matter how many doors are placed in front of you.

 

Who is your favorite character from your book and why?

It’s a big tie for me between Abby, the main female heroine in TROLL, and her cousin Ashlynn, who readers will learn more about as the series goes on. Ashlynn is a very strong and cunning female character that Abby will have to react off and deal with as this story unfolds.

 

Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?

Some of my readers Facebook message me or write on my Goodreads page, and that is so nice of them. When they tell me what they like about my novels it always puts an extra good jolt in my day. I’m so thankful to anyone who takes the time to do that or leave a review.

 

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

I’ve always wanted to write/ be an author since I started writing long novels in the third grade. In addition to that, as a little girl I think I figured I’d become a nurse like my mom, I never thought I’d be a women in the media working behind the scenes at a news station and an Amazon best selling author. So, I’m over the moon with the way things have turned out. 🙂

 
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Excerpt from Troll:

Seconds went by and he found nothing, except a distraction. It wasn’t the human’s heartbeat drumming steadily on the second floor that he found unnerving, most likely it was the fact that she was reading a rhyme aloud – that wasn’t a human thing as much as it was a trolls’: “A kiss was made,” he heard her voice whisper, trying to ignore it. “A rose was dropped.” He looked up when she said the word rose. “A heart was snapped in half. The love of your life has left you in a world that’s dark and black.”

He moved toward the sound. Perhaps she was really one of his kind in disguise, here to spy on him.

“Thunder sounds, the sky turns gray, there is nothing recognizable at all. The love of your life has left you in a world that’s sad and small.” The words made him think about Helena, his Helena, kissing Klaus, while he had her fully under his control. It was sickened him and pissed him off.

He crept down the bookcase where a girl was reading from a book out loud, unaware of his presence. She was definitely not a troll, he concluded when he got a good look at her, growing bored.    “But then the sun comes out. A rainbow appears. An angel has come to tell you, your hope is stronger than fear.”

“Are you sure that’s what an angel would say?” he asked.

Her blue, puppy-like eyes shot up, her body nearly jumping out of its skin from being startled.           “Where did you come from?” she squeaked as she looked around, her heartbeat doubling.

“About five shelves over,” he answered as he looked her up and down. She was a tiny, petite thing compared to himself, with light brown hair and blushed fair skin that made her blue eyes pop. She also had four freckles on one cheek and three on the other. This human was both plain looking but also strangely captivating compared to others in the building.

“Oh, I see, and were you standing there the entire time?” she asked, her free hand going to her hip, as she tried to stand up straighter, trying to seem tall and authoritative. He could see she was irritated at being disturbed, and that was the most entertaining thing of all.

“Yes, is that a problem?” he asked with a smile.

“Yes!”

“I’m sorry … I thought you worked here. I was just looking for some help,” he lied. Did she think he wouldn’t notice the fact that she was standing next to a filing cart and wearing a library badge that read: Abigail? That, and the feelings of servitude and obligation that he could smell all over her.

“Oh, I – I do,” she said, as if this had just occurred to her. She was unable to wipe the annoyance and unease off her face, as she looked down his arm, judging him because of his numerous tattoos.        Humans…so sadly sheltered. “How can I help you?”

He didn’t answer. This irritated her more.

“The college used book section is downstairs, and so is the art and tattoo section,” she suggested, trying to guess his reason for pestering her.

“Do I really look old enough to be in college to you?” he asked, half insulted because college years for humans were death years for his kind.

“Yes,” she said honestly as she took in his tall, six-foot-five frame. “You look at least twenty.”

“Nope, time to get your eye’s checked maybe?” he asked, stepping closer, letting her guess his age; this seemed like a game she didn’t want to play.

“Well you’re definitely a least eighteen,” she replied as she turned part of her body away from him, her eyes back to her books; as if being eighteen put him in a different category than her. “You’d have to be to get a tattoo, now is—”

“Or maybe I had really cool parents,” he cut her off. “And I’m seventeen. That was an enchanting poem you read by the way. Who was it by?”

He took another step closer as she took a step back, nearly colliding into a bookshelf. “Amber Paris.” She handed him the book she’d read from and appeared much more comfortable when he was looking at it and not her. He examined it with only partial interest. “She got it published when she was fifteen.” she seemed to know all about the subject.

“Well, that explains why it’s so good, then. People always come up with their best work when they’re young. I bet at twelve her poems were even better.”

Each word he spoke was like a hook, spinning magic to pull her in to him even as she wanted to get away. “Where are you from, exactly?” she asked as she noticed what he was wearing; heavy jeans instead of the more typically Floridian surfer shorts, and a thick dark green shirt that went down to his elbows, only showing off half of his tattoos. Probably weird attire for the hottest months of Florida, but as a troll he craved warmth and hated the cold. “Are you from up north?”

“No, not at all,” he said, offering no other explanation. “So, why read a poem aloud? What about you does it relates to?” he asked with a grin, it was a pretty personal question and yet she’d have to tell him. Soon his powers if he kept talking to her would be able to push Abby to do all sorts of things… for a short time anyway, until a price was paid.

He read over the beginning lines of the poem again. “A kiss was made, a rose was dropped.” The words tripped him up, making him think about Rosabel’s last feelings before she died. Feelings that held a deep meaning for him, letting him know that even though she had never been able to claim him as an inheritor, she still had cared about him more than any other treasure.

His eyes could have almost teared up just thinking about his murdered mother. Trolls could be insanely emotional – good thing for him he was better at shielding how he felt than most. He turned his face away, getting a hold of himself, as the little human rambled, her voice a comforting distraction.

“I don’t think it relates to me. I just write poetry so my teacher asked me to look over another writer’s work.”

“Because maybe you want to be like this writer, famous and well liked?” he stated to test if her interest in the author was shallow, sensing what she didn’t even know was one of her most hidden desires. Humans could be so naive about their own ambitions, but these were easily recognized by trolls. This one clearly had no idea what her body and mind were capable of yearning for.

“No,” she lied, as if insulted. “That’s crazy. I’ve never wanted that; it’s just an assignment.”

“Are you sure?” he asked, as her hidden wants started calling to him – they tasted satisfying too.        Her craving for freedom, he could use that to trap her, and then trap all the humans here. He’d have some real fun after a day of anger and sorrow as he played with these fools until they broke.

 Leave her alone! a small boy’s voice suddenly screamed into his ear. He turned around, startled, only to find no one behind him.

“Are you okay?” he heard Abby ask him. His face must have looked haunted. That’s when he sensed where the book that he had been searching for was.

“Yes.” Finding the book and his key were far more important than this girl or having a little fun. He looked back in Abby’s direction, now needing to get rid of her. She looked nervous and still confused by his presence, still not knowing why she was continuing to talk to him. He decided in that moment to show her the kind of mercy and kindness his mother Rosabel should have received. Besides, he really didn’t feel like killing anyone innocent so the knights couldn’t find them later.

Before she could move, he reached out and gripped her shoulder, sending heat through her body, making her look deep into his eyes. “If you ever see me or anything like me again, anyone that has markings like this…,” he lifted his sleeve so she could take in his entire arm. His tattoos on it came to life and moved hypnotically, numbing her senses and making her go into a trance. “… you probably shouldn’t trust us. You should be smart and stay away from anyone like myself that you ever come in contact with.”

And with those words, he had given her a precious gift he hadn’t given any other human in a very long time. If any more trolls came along she’d stay out of their way now, wanting nothing to do with them. He watched her walk off in a beautiful daze. She’d certainly stay away from him if he changed his mind in the next few moments and decided to pursue her after all. Trolls often did change their minds about most things. He imagined her lips would have tasted pretty good, for a human anyway.      Her body would have most likely felt nice …

Please leave her alone! he heard the boy scream again, the voice coming from his head. He was hearing a past memory, one that was too dangerous for him to think about. He ran his fingers along the book spines one more time. They led him right to the familiar texture he had been looking for. To the very storybook a young knight had checked out and carried in his backpack years before Wilhelm had found
 
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About Ashley C. Harris

Author and film director Ashley C. Harris resides in Florida. Ashley was first recognized for her edgy writing and unique film work when she wrote and directed the teenage film “Lines”. Lines was the first feature film in the world captured using only Mac Laptops.

In 2013 she teamed up with Barclay Publicity to release the first in a new young adult novel series, “Shock Me”. Ashley then went on to author eight other titles, in multiple genres, as she also worked behind-the-scenes on a morning news show that aired on ABC. In 2014, four of Ashley’s books landed on the Amazon’s Best Selling Top-Ten-List. In 2015, she received her first publishing deal for “Troll”, a KindleScout novel winner.

When Ashley is not dreaming up new manuscripts and working on film sets, she loves spending time with her family, obsessing about biblical mysteries, and watching lots of Doctor Who. Keep an eye out for her newest releases!

Connect with Ashley at: Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads | Tumblr | Instagram

 
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Baad Dog by Sal Conte

 

Baad Dog by Sal Conte
Publication Date: October 16th, 2015
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Pages: 128

 

~Summary~

 

Baad-Dog-Cover-FinalSince when did man’s best friend become his very own worst nightmare?

Harry wanted a dog.

He’d wanted a dog ever since his mother gave away the cute little mongrel pup he and his brother adopted when they were kids. His mom gave the dog away because Harry and Lenny didn’t take care of her as promised.

Now Harry is a grown man with children of his own. He brings home Queenie, a miracle of modern robotics who looks and acts just like a real dog. Big Mistake.

“One of the beauties of the K9-233 is that they don’t eat or poop.”

Harry’s wife, Pam, feels there’s something off about Queenie right from the beginning. And then strange things begin to happen: Harry’s five-year-old says Queenie talks to him. There’s the near fatal car accident after Harry makes Queenie spend the night in the garage for being naughty. But Harry loves Queenie—maybe a little too much. Will Harry realize there’s a murderous monster living under his roof before his entire family becomes dog food?

Baad Dog is a horror, sic-fi thriller with a twist from the author of 80s pulp horror classics Child’s Play and The Power. Sal Conte has been dubbed “the modern master of the surprise ending,” and this one is full of surprises.

~Excerpt~

Some dogs are dangerous…

You can’t deny it. Everyone’s heard a story or two about the friendly pit bull, or the loveable Rottweiler who was the treasured family pet until the day he was playing with the kids in the yard and chewed little Liza’s fingers off.

But truth be told, those dogs— Rottweiler’s, Pit Bulls, Dobermans, aren’t born mean, they’re mean because they’ve been mistreated. A mistreated dog is nothing more than ticking time bombs just waiting for the right moment to go Cujo on an unsuspecting public lulled into a false sense of confidence by their giant gentleness.

But my, dog… my dog, the man thought. His dog was loved and cared for right from the start. His was a lap dog, cute and cuddly, and… perfect, which is why he was having the damndest time accepting the bitter truth— that his cute, cuddly, well treated dog was also a murderer.

So he lay there, his legs rendered useless, feeling as if they’d been set on fire like Christmas kindling. His world was spinning, spinning, spinning as if he’d been set down on a runaway merry-go-round. Through the pain and the spinning he heard the dog coming for him, coming to finish him off, her soft, doggie footsteps scratching gently toward him on the dust covered road.

Then she climbed up onto his body as he lay, eyes gazing up at the moon. She stood on his stomach, and teetered for a second before looking into his eyes.

Go get help, he thought. I need help. Of course, he knew better. She was the reason he was in this position in the first place. As the little dog began moving up his torso toward his chest, he thought of all the killer dogs he’d heard about or seen on the news over the years, and as his dog closed in for the kill, he wondered: since when did man’s best friend become his very own worst nightmare?

 

 

 

~My Thoughts~

 

A small cute dog that doesn’t need feeding, doesn’t poop and doesn’t bark, sounds ideal, right?

Not in this case!

Baad dog is a quick and suspenseful read. A bit slow to get going but it builds up the tension and evolves into an eventful story… but not a very scary one!

I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

~About the Author~

New Pub photo 9-15

Sal Conte is the horror writing alter ego of Amazon #1 Teen Horror author, E. Van Lowe. As Sal Conte, the author turns his talents to gruesome horror with stunning results. Sal Conte is the author of 80s pulp horror classics “Child’s Play” and “The Power,” as well as recent shorts “The Toothache Man” and “Because We Told Her To.

“Baad Dog” is Sal Conte’s first solo ebook.

You can visit him at http://evanlowe.com/sal-contes-page/

or Goodreads / Twitter / Website / Amazon Page / Facebook Fan Page

 

~Interview~

What inspired you to write Baad Dog?

Many years ago, when I started writing horror, like many scary story writers, Stephen King was the author I most admired, the author I most emulated. I wrote the pulp horror classic, The Power, after reading Firestarter. Recently, I decided to my own put a spin on an SK novel. Last summer’s The Secrets of Love and Death was my spin on It. After Secrets was completed, I decided to write about a dog. I knew the dog in my novel had to be the opposite of Cujo. Sometime last spring the idea for Queenie, the cute little baad dog, came to me. Next up, I’m going to do my version of Salem’s Lot—a vampire novel… I think.

What made you decide to write in the horror genre?

Horror was one of those things that chose me. When I was in high school, I enjoyed horror movies and books, but at the time, I thought my career would be as a serious novelist. By college, after reading Rosemary’s Baby, Salem’s Lot, and Raga Six (written by the awesome Frank Lauria), I knew I wanted to try my hand at the macabre. I wrote a few horror short stories and wound up selling them. After that, I was hooked on horror.

What was your favorite scene to write in Baad Dog?

My favorite scene came as an afterthought, but it was a needed scene. It’s the scene where Pam is home alone taking a bath, and the bathroom door starts creeping open. At first, she thinks her husband and the kids are back from dinner, but when she calls out, no one answers. Queenie is supposedly locked in the garage, but now she wonders if Queenie is in the house, spying on her. One of the staples of the horror genre is the isolation suspense scene, and at some point I realized I didn’t have one. I wrote the bathroom scene to satisfy that, and it has become my favorite. I hope readers enjoy the suspense of the scene as much as I enjoyed creating it.

What is your writing process like?

I come up with a bunch of ideas. I write them down all over the place. I have no discipline with the formative process. When I think I have a take on a story and have an idea where I think the story should go, I start a more formal outline. Trust me, it’s not a formal outline, but now I have all my ideas in a linear form in one computer document. Once I do that, I write a chapter. If the chapter feels good, I start the book, while filling in the outline. Typically, I write the first chapter of a book cold, just seeing how it feels. If I like it, I continue.

Do you have any favorite authors in horror? Or ones that have influenced you more than others?

I have lots of horror faves: Stephen King, Ira Levin, Peter Straub, Robert Mccammon, Ray Bradbury. My most recent fave is Joe Hill. He is as awesome as his dad (Stephen King). I recommend all three of his novels, but my favorite is NOS4A2. If you are a fan of horror and haven’t read him, you are about to have a very pleasant horror reading experience.

And do you have any favorite horror movies that have influenced you?

The horror movie that has had the most influence on me is the original (old B&W) The Invasion of The Body Snatchers. It’s a very short film, but filled with edge of your seat suspense. I must have seen this film fifty times. While I started my career as an 80s splatterpunk, writing graphic horror, as I’ve matured, I’ve gone back to the roots of horror that are crafted more around reader/viewer expectation than being graphic. This movie teaches that.

Is there a genre you’d like to write but haven’t yet?

I have done some notes on a few detective thrillers, but haven’t followed through with writing them. I’ve created a couple of characters I think would be great leads in detective series. I’m sure I will get to them one day.

What part of writing life/being an author took you by surprise?

I’m not sure. I guess the biggest surprise is that when I was in high school and college I knew I wanted to make my career being a writer. I also knew most writers have to do something else, work a straight job, teach, edit—something. Very few writers get to do only that—write, but somehow I have made it happen (although I have also produced TV, but that’s mostly writing). I’ve made a great living, and I have been doing it for a long time. Wow! How cool is that?

How long does it take for you to write a story?

I can write a story in an afternoon. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nothing close to a final draft, but I can write a short in one or two sittings. Novels are something else all-together. I have been completing about a novel a year, but now that I am about to jump into self-publishing, and writing for both E. Van Lowe and Sal Conte, I hope to do two a year plus a short or two. That is ambitious for me. I will need to learn to be waay more focused. We shall see.

 

Hosted by:

An Interview With Jen Winters.

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Today I am lucky enough to have the talented author, Jen Winters, with me. She is a hard working stay-at-home mom, homeschooling two great kids. She spends her days with the kids and her nights with her book boyfriends. She is grateful to her hubby for all his support and love, and can’t imagine this life without him.12025294_1501438913499754_124657260_n

As well as being a parent and a wife, she reads, writes, promotes other authors and is co-admin for Author Promo Co-Op – a group of dedicated authors whose mission is to discuss ways to further the indie industry.

Hi Jen, thank you for taking some time out of your busy schedule for this interview.
You write Paranormal Romance. What drives a Paranormal Romance for you?

I love PNR and have for nearly a decade now. What makes it special is the escape into a different, but possible and believable reality. I love the tension of the secret versus the known. The secrets can be so intense, like a brooding vampire broods because he used to be a mass murderer, or the sexy man with the abs made of steel is jealous because the wolf inside him knows she is his mate. It’s the mix of the supernatural with the normal that makes it fun for me. My immortal Guardian watches the sci-fi channel, lol. Normal + supernatural.

When did you start writing for publication?

About 6 years ago, a little more than. I wanted to see if I could write something that readers would want to read. So far so good. If only I could get it into more hands, haha.

What made you decide to put your work out there to be read by others?

I’ve never in my adult life been the embarrassed type. Putting my work out there wasn’t so much an issue for me as putting it out there where my family could read it. The first time my mother read my book, I was nervous as hell, but I don’t really get that way about the readers in the internet ether.

What do you think you bring to your books that makes you unique?

I have a degree in biblical text and I have created a world that revolves around a monotheistic supernatural world. Certainly, Artemis shows up, but she isn’t a god so much as the daughter of a fallen angel. I interpret old manuscripts liberally, including ancient accounts of demons and battles, gods and heroes. Someone with a firm grasp of ancient near eastern literature would pick up on it; others don’t have to because I spell out everything they need to know there. I did a lot of research on my characters, having taken many of them from history.

How has self-publishing changed the way you read?

I committed this year to only reading indies and I must say that I am impressed with the quality of writers out there. The ones that take the industry seriously and are out there to give indies a great rep are fantastic writers and authors. I have read books that would give Kim Harrison and William Faulkner both a run for their money.

That’s also the tragedy of self-publishing. There are so many good ones out there and the market is just saturated. Getting your book in front of readers is a challenge I don’t think any indie has fully mastered, even the ones on the top 100 list. To get paid, we have to sell, but to sell we have to put out the money that traditional publishing companies already have. It’s a monetary challenge and a bit tragic, because there is such good quality out there.

Who or what has helped you become a better writer over time?

My first editor, Jessica Augustsson helped me weave a better story and gave me great feedback on what makes a PNR good. My mother has alpha read for me and helped me get those little technical buggers I didn’t see the 5th time through the manuscript. Veronica Del Rosa has helped me see what I am missing in my male MCs. And then, just writing—a lot. Every day.

What is that one moment you have had as a writer that made you realize you were actually a real author?

Probably my first unsolicited review. It was a good one and it mean the world to me that someone I didn’t know read my book and liked it enough to review it.

How have your aspirations as a writer changed over time?

I thought I would write pnr forever, but I am seriously considering YA right now. I would really, honestly, like to see one of my books made into a movie (or TV show) and then complain about how they’re ruining it 😀

Tell us about your favorite memory related to reading or writing?

So, when I was in high school, my BFF and I wrote together—like all the time. We were on a school field trip and in the bus, just writing away. All of our friends and classmates and teachers expected this from us. We were good students, but in our downtime, we passed a notebook. So, there we are, stuck on a small part because we need a useful weapon that will main but nor kill, and suddenly we both look up at the same time and say “nailgun” at the same time. We hadn’t spoken a word to each other before that, we were just writing the story, but we came up with the same idea at the same time. Our teacher and fellow classmates all looked at us like we were both amazing and nuts because they had zero context for both of us shouting “nailgun” at the same time. It was hilarious for us and we never did explain it to them.

When you consider your future, what would you like to make happen for you?

I would like to build a following of fans who keep up with my goings on and are excited about my new releases. Time and determination are my friends there.

What do you like to see from your fans, followers, readers, and supporters on your social media sites?

I love it when someone reads my books and then contacts me about it. That’s how I met some of my closest friends. They read my book and just sent me a PM about how much they loved it. It embarrasses the life out of me, but I appreciate it none the less. I like to see what my readers are all about and get to know them. I appreciate the reviews like you can’t even imagine unless you are a writer. I love to see my stuff being shared with friends.

If you read my stuff and like it, feel free to message me. I will talk to you. I’m not an out-of-reach author. I love my fans and some of them have become my best friends.

Tell us a bit about your current work(s)-in-progress.

I am working on the final installment of the first Guardian novels trilogy, Raising Hell. This one is about Yuruch’s redemption and will surprise you how much you feel sorry for his wicked ass.

I am working on a novella for an anthology due out in April. This is an introduction to my Dragonswan series the next PNR trilogy I will be working on before I go back to the Guardians. The anthology will be a charitable work with proceeds going to an autism awareness foundation.

I am also working on a YAF that I am keeping a bit secret because I don’t want to put it out there until it’s ready. I have some alpha readers who are reading along with me as I write it, but other than that, I am not releasing the title and description until the whole series (4books) is complete. It’s a long-term project.

Tell us a little about your previous works and how we can get our hands on them.

Kissing Demons is the first book of the Guardian novels.
http://www.amazon.com//dp/B00R28094U

I’ve been a Guardian for 800 years, and sometimes, even us immortals need a vacation. So when my big sister calls and tells me I’m off for two weeks, I take the opportunity to visit my favorite place: The Hunter’s Moon, a bar for supernaturals only. There’s a few things I want to accomplish while I’m not working: get a grimoire, find a little temporary fun, and make a friend. I did not want to find my soul mate, nearly die, watch a sister give up this life, and see my city in the throes of mass destruction.

What am I supposed to do now? My vacations over, my soul mate’s been kidnapped by a demon I’m not powerful enough to defeat, and Fort Worth, one of the cities I love, is in pieces. If I help the city, I will lose my soul mate; if I help my Alex, I will lose the city. What kind of Guardian would I be if I didn’t do everything in my power to defeat Yuruch? Am I even sure I want to be a Guardian anymore?

Kissing the Rain is a free novelette that introduces Alex and Geneva. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00TUXIDAM

I was happy, living the good life in France. I taught Math and Computer Science, I mentored a group of great kids, and I had my dates—the lovers I visited regularly. Then My father decides it’s time to call me home. If I could, I would ignore him, but I’m a halfling and a demon bound to my father’s voice. When he calls his children, we all have to answer.
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I want to be better than I am and I don’t want to help whatever foul plan he’s come up with. I can keep him off my back for a little while with the psychic static of the supernatural club, The Hunter’s Moon, but eventually the club with close and I would rather die than go to him.

My only hope is a petite, fiery Guardian, Geneva Archer. I’ve heard of her before—she’s famous among supernaturals for her dedication to her work—but can she really help me? I’m a halfling and she’s a Guardian, two of the world’s most infamous enemies.

When Yuruch calls for his children to join him in Ft. Worth, it takes every ounce will will-power Alex has to stay away. He may have to go to Texas, but he would rather die than become his father’s puppet. This novelette follows Alex in the days leading up to meeting Geneva. If you haven’t already read Kissing Demons, this is your chance to meet the MCs from Alex’s POV.

Falling Angels is the second novel of the Guardian series, and is on sale right now for 99 cents on Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ZPVX1SC/

What’s worse than losing your job? How about losing your life, your home, and everything familiar? I just wanted to work. What did I get in return? A long fucking fall with a sudden stop.
Stranded on earth with little hope for survival and an eternity of banishment ahead of me, I did the only thing I knew—I worked the jobs I could. Until I realized I’d been replaced. Then I got mad. Eleven thousand years of fighting for my destiny had me broken, bitter, and ready to just give up. And then my best friend blew up Fort Worth and screwed the entire universe in the process. Now I have to save his ass from everyone including the Guardians.
I hate Guardians—those intrusive vixens replaced me, took over my job, and left me utterly useless. But this one, Lavinia, she’s almost as old as I am and she is starting to get under my skin. I can’t concentrate when she’s around—everything about her mystifies me and why the hell do I remember her from before? She shouldn’t even exist! And certainly not in my memory.

Where can we find you to tell you how amazing we think you are?

Friend request me on facebook and send me a message: https://www.facebook.com/WintersJen
Or follow me on facebook: https://facebook.com/jenwintersne
Join my street team (benefits for members): https://www.facebook.com/groups/859499660796902/
Email me at jenwintersne@yahoo.com
Find me on GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/Jen_Winters
Follow me on Twitter: @jenwintersne
Follow my blog: https://jenwintersne.wordpress.com
Or join the groups I moderate or admin:
APC: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1605983442956270/
Trail Mix Readers: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/153603-trail-mix-readers

and finally… If you ever got stranded on a deserted island which three books would you bring?

Oh my!
1. The bible…it’s part of my daily life and I can’t live without it.
2. The Abhorsen Trilogy by Garth Nix—best epic fantasy I’ve ever read.
3. Shakespeare Anthology—because it contains anything I need: tragedy, comedy, drama, poetry, love…

Thank you for joining me, Jen. I’m looking forward to reading Raising Hell and I wish you every success in your career. 😀


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