Several More Chapters

The Risen God      I got in several more chapters of The Risen God today (here’s the facebook page). It’s up to 58,000 words and looks like it’ll end up being around 150,000 by the end of it. I’ve really heard when people have said that certain books weren’t developed enough. I had always thought I was “way too wordy” so I was actually relieved by the “negative” comments that allowed me the freedom to be as wordy as I feel I need to, in order to get the story across as fully as I desire to!

This is the beauty of negative book reviews (although I can say that I rarely get any genuinely horrible, mean ones, thank goodness)… you can learn from them if the person giving the review is willing to take the moment to explain why they gave them. It’s a gift, even if right in that moment you don’t feel like it is.

I still remember those negative comments, most of which centered around my Guardian of the Abyss book. They are very freeing, as odd as that might sound. I loved the book, but I, myself, actually felt disappointed because I didn’t feel like I could go into everything and develop the characters as I wanted to!

So, to fellow writers… don’t be afraid of negative comments. Let go of the desire to win with everyone–no one can. Look at the criticism and ask yourself, “What is the gift this person is trying to give me?” or “How is this person trying to help me so that more people will enjoy my books?”

Questions like these are very freeing. Remember, you’re a story teller. So tell yourself whatever story you want to about that negative review. Tell yourself “this person hates me!” if you want to… or tell yourself, “This person wants to help me, so how does this do that?” if you want to. YOU get to choose what story you tell yourself about anything that anyone says to you.

And readers… please, take a moment to write a review. It matters. It matters so much more than you will ever guess at. It encourages the author. If you like his or her books… comment. Because the more motivated we are to keep writing, the more likelihood you’ll get more books to enjoy!

A Gargoyle’s Might

So I finally put the last word of A Gargoyle’s Might into OpenOffice and hit Save.

Lincoln and Ivory’s tale is told in its rough form and is ready for all that must come after it. Strangely, this has been a very wild ride. Ivory changes so much over the course of the book… and yet she doesn’t. It isn’t until the end that you understand her.

This was a challenge to write because I resisted it every step of the way. I wanted Ivory to be a sympathetic character. I wanted to like her. I hated what she did to Lincoln. I thought Lincoln was being a big fainting daisy. I tried to change them and they fought back. They stood up for who they really are and challenged everything I thought about how they should be–and  a lot of what I think I should be.

They taught me lessons that I didn’t want to learn, and they showed me truths about myself that I thought I would hate once I saw them without their masks. Like Ivory, I learned that not everything is as it seems… even the things inside me. Like Lincoln, I learned that devotion can be a strength, and I learned that while sometimes it results in pain, it can lead to renewal, as well.

Romance novels aren’t thought to be great literature by most, but Lincoln and Ivory’s book, long and intense as it is, shows me that at least in my mind, it can be.

It won’t be long now. It’s coming. And it’s coming with lessons and with intense drama that is unlike A Wolf’s Song in almost every way. But then I think that’s how it’s supposed to be. Everyone’s story is different. Ivory and Lincoln both show sides of themselves that leave them vulnerable to dislike. They shed their outer garments of attempted perfection and they get down and dirty and honest about themselves and their confusion and their hurt and their hope.

The book is very raw, and their feelings are very raw. They are put through hell, chased and tormented by everyone who ever claimed to love them. They find new allies in unexpected places and they find old allies in places they hadn’t appreciated as much as was deserved.

They must find themselves, and each other–and despite the high word count, they had little time in which to do it.

Ivory teaches us that being honest and being vulnerable may make you more powerful than you could ever dream.

 

A Gargoyle's Might

A Gargoyle’s Might

Soul Sucker Review Post

Cover_SoulSucker

Today, I am proud and excited to be hosting Soul Sucker, by Kate Pearce!

Soul Sucker

Kate Pearce

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Book Description:

Supernatural Branch of Law Enforcement empath Ella Walsh sucks memories from people’s heads. The job fills her mind with others’ nightmares and leaves her with little time for love, but if she doesn’t pair off with a mate of the government’s choosing soon, the psychic blowback will destroy her powers and her sanity.

The last time shapeshifting SBLE superstar Vadim Morosov worked with an empath, he got her killed and himself assigned to a desk. He worries about taking on another partner, but helping Ella track down an empath killer might be his only chance to save his career.

Naturally, the government decides to throw them together.

They resist at first, but they can’t deny the simmering heat between them. As the killer’s strikes grow closer to home, their bond gets tighter. And when the murderer finally traps Ella, her developing link with Vadim might be the only thing that can save her.

Excerpt:

I think the question you should be asking yourself, Ms. Walsh, is why you feel so threatened by me.”

She screeched to a halt again. “Threatened, by you?”

Yes. I think you’ve got used to getting your own way in that office, and you don’t like anyone else coming in and questioning anything you say.”

And I think you’re talking out of your ass.”

I don’t like incompetence, Ms. Walsh, and I don’t like working with empaths on the brink of a break- down. I’ll work with you because I have no choice, but I’ll be questioning everything that comes out of your mouth, double and triple checking it and, if necessary, taking my concerns to the very top to make sure I’m heard so I don’t get left holding the can when everything blows up.”

She stared into his eyes and for the first time in her life seriously contemplated drawing her weapon and shooting a fellow professional. But he’d probably like it if she did that, and she still had no way of knowing if he could actually be killed.

Instead, she gave him her best professional smile. “I’m glad you shared your concerns with me, Morosov. I appreciate your input and will consider each and every one of your points very carefully.”

Text Copyright © 2012 by Kate Pearce

Permission to reproduce text granted by Harlequin Books S.A. Cover art used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Limited. All rights reserved. ® and TM are trademarks owned by Harlequin Enterprises Limited or its affiliated companies, used under license.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

My Review of Soul Sucker by Kate Pearce

First, allow me to apologize for being late posting this. My 6 year old is sick, plus her diabetes decided to go berserk and since I’m so new to it, I had to sort that out first. But no more delay, let’s end the anticipation!

I really love paranormal romance. The first thing that caught me about Soul Sucker was the blurb. I guess that goes to show you that a blurb can really make all the difference in whether or not your book gets read!

As I started reading, I was initially put off a bit by the introductory stuff, but then again, I always am. The story already! That’s my impatient brain, not me. It’s not the same thing, right??

We got to the story, then, and all bets were off. The first thing that I noticed, although being put off by the initial scene being the post-one-night-stand morning, was the quality of the writing. Generally speaking, I can tell right off whether or not I’m going to be spending a story with my teeth in half-gritted position. In this case, I was able to relax into the story, without fear that I’d have to read past errors (which always catch my eye and make my reading stumble slightly).

I like our heroine and the fact that she’s not universally liked or desired, because, let’s face it, who is? She’s very down-to-Earth, and so far in the story, doesn’t run right into dangerous situations mindlessly. Romance novels are kind of like horror flicks that way on average.

I love how very unique the whole universe is. It is seamlessly drawn into a modern setting, and the characters, the abilities, and the general lore is unusual enough to be fascinating.

I’m also vindictive enough (or something) to love the twist on “mates” that Ms. Pearce employs here. It takes a special person to take the standard and heave it on its head, invert it, and skewer it. Ms. Pearce is definitely up to the job!

I like also the relationships amongst the characters. The interactions of the bosses, the coworkers, the neighbors. There’s a sense of greater community in the book, rather than everything being 1,000% about the central relationship.

And the fae web… I absolutely love, love, love it. It is a great plot device without being one at all. How’d she manage that? Inquiring minds want to know!

Anyway, I liked the ending a lot. It wasn’t predictable and the bad guy was a pleasant surprise. In this genre, predictability is a real problem. I enjoyed the book tremendously over all, and because it was very well-written and actually gasp proofread, I give it an extra star above the “engaging storyline” that I typically give 5 of 5 stars for.

So although there were a few things I didn’t like about the behavior of the heroine (and when you will ever agree with another person completely?), I really loved the book and I’m now a fan of Ms. Pearce.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AuthorPicAbout Kate Pearce:

Award winning author, Kate Pearce was born into a large family of girls in England, and spent much of her childhood living very happily in a dream world. Despite being told that she really needed to ‘get with the program’, she graduated from the University College of Wales with an honors degree in history.

A move to the USA finally allowed her to fulfill her dreams and sit down and write her first romance novel. Kate is published by Signet Eclipse, Kensington Aphrodisia, Ellora’s Cave, Carina Press, Cleis Press and Virgin Black Lace/Cheek.

you can find her at:

http://www.katepearce.com

Twitter as Kate4queen

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kate-Pearces-Fan-Page/220636502580?fref=ts

Buy Links:

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/soul-sucker-kate-pearce/1114057557

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Soul-Sucker-ebook/dp/B00APEXMKG

Guardian of the Abyss Makeover!

cover2

 

Guardian of the Abyss has a new cover.

Sometimes it’s a difficult choice to let go of something that you genuinely like. Although it was not a popular cover, the old Guardian of the Abyss cover is actually one of my personal favorites.

That being said, the new cover is just fantastically lovely, and I certainly hope that, with a new cover, more people will be ready and willing to discover the beauty of Sarah and Abaddon’s love.

As a newbie Indie author, I am bound to make mistakes. This one was one of mine. I am grateful to all who mentioned the issue, so that I could correct it.

Now, if you’ll pardon me, I’m going to go cradle the old cover and comfort it. It needs it. Not me. Seriously. Would I kid about a thing like that??

Guardian of the Abyss goes on Tour!

Here’s the schedule:

December 3 Interview
The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom
www.creativelygreen.blogspot.com

December 3 Spotlight
http://victoriadanann.me

December 4 Promo
Book On A Wire
bookonawire.com

December 4 Interview
Marked By Books
http://markedbybooks.blogspot.com

December 5 Guest blog
Roxanne’s Realm
www.roxannesrealm.blogspot.com

December 6 Guest blog
Cloey's Book Reviews and Other Stuff
cloeyk.blogspot.com

December 7 Guest blog and review
Wolf Majick Reviews
wolfmajick.blogspot.com

December 7 Promo
DEB SANDERS
http://DebSanders.com

December 8 Guest blog
Carly Fall - Where Fantasy Meets Romance
www.carlyfall.com

December 9 Interview
http://www.kaydeeroyal.blogspot.com

December 9 - promo and review
Beverly @ The Wormhole
http://wormyhole.blogspot.com/

December 10 Guest blog
Fang-tastic Books
http://www.fang-tasticbooks.blogspot.com

Does it Ever End? And Nanowrimo!

So I’ve been so busy I don’t know my arse from my elbow. My husband was in hospital (he’s fine now!), my daughter’s birthday party was Saturday… we had a hurricane (but not the worst of it here, sad for those who got that)… we’re repainting parts of our house…
And now I’m going away for a retreat for 3 days. I’m excited, but also having to pack and prepare for that, along with having my daughter out of school thanks to cyclone Sandy (hurricane, trop storm… they couldn’t seem to decide what to call this hybrid storm) has not been easy.

I was a “second runner up” for this, so I got lucky. I hope the person who was not able to go enjoys the time in another way.

I don’t know what it will be like there, but I’m pleased to have Guardian of the Abyss coming out soon.

And now for the REALLY big news! I’m doing Nanowrimo this year! I’ve wanted to do it for about 3 years, so now I finally am going to suck it up and knuckle down and really try to do it this year.  The book I’ll write will be within my other, as yet unintroduced universe, Inner Earth Chronicles.

So, here we go… writer’s retreat and nanowrimo!

Free Book and Short Story!

Okay, so on  Sunday, June 3, 2012, A Wolf’s Song will be FREE on Amazon!

If you haven’t already read A Wolf’s Song, get it FREE on Sunday, June 3!

The following offer is available to anyone who has gotten A Wolf’s Song from Amazon:

Write up a review on my Amazon page for A Wolf’s Song. Either post here, or on my Facebook that you read it, you posted your review, and what your Amazon Username is. Then email me at shannon(at)shannonphoenix(dot)com with your email address. I will send you my short story entitled The Minister’s Paige for free.

This mini e-book will ONLY be available to those who have written a review on Amazon, Goodreads, (and any other site as determined by the author) and who have informed me via this blog, email, or Facebook of what your Username is and where you posted the review (and if you give me an email address to send it to).

The Minister’s Paige:

Paige is invited to a party by her vampire boss. There, she finds herself an unwitting pawn in a high stakes game between her boss, his rival, and one of the most powerful vampires alive. The Minister of Justice, Stavos, has come to investigate rumors of Hunts in the area; a ‘game’ in which two human women are pitted against each other in a life or death fight. The victor must kill her opponent, only to be hunted by the vampires in her own turn.

A short, dark romance suitable for adults.

Excerpt from Love’s Armageddon

“The what village?” she asked, confused.

He raised both eyebrows. “New Galatia. The ‘were village…” he said it like she was stupid.

“‘Were? As in werewolf?” she finally asked, sorting out what he must–impossibly–be saying.

“Obviously,” he scowled. He pulled a thick, laminated poster towards her. “I think you’d be particularly interested in this–“

She couldn’t help it, she cut him off again. “There are werewolves, too? For real?”

He stared at her. It was very clear the vampire wasn’t disposed towards her in anything approaching a friendly manner. She might have been something unidentifiable, ugly, and smelly stuck to the bottom of his shoe. “Has he told you nothing?” he asked finally. “Of course there are werewolves. You’ll be living in their village–“

“I’m not living with werewolves.”

He looked pained, as if she were purposefully being obtuse. But seriously, he didn’t genuinely think she’d just move in with a bunch of man-dogs, did he? She supposed that it was nice that he wasn’t moving her in with vampires, but werewolves weren’t something she wanted to live with. Ever. No vampires, no werewolves, no snake-dudes or reptillians or whatever. No, no, and no.

With exaggerated patience, he said, “Perhaps you would like a cabin in Waltham Park, then? Something isolated? Would that make you happy?”

She rested her jaw on the heel of one hand while she tapped her fingers on the table with the other one and considered it. Would she be safe anywhere near the werewolf town? She did know that New Galatia was in Waltham Park. She just hadn’t known it was… werewolf central.

“Let me put it this way, Miss Barker. You haven’t got a choice. It’s Waltham park, or perhaps Tallis’ dungeon.”

Her fingers stopped drumming the table. “He has a dungeon? Can I see it?”

He rolled his eyes, the gesture fitting his youthful appearance perfectly. “Not unless you piss him off enough,” he told her. “And then it won’t be a sight-seeing tour.” He pulled out a different glossy poster. “How about this?”

The poster showed a lovely, long ranch-style house that sprawled in a green, grassy yard. Behind it were verdant trees and the mountains rising behind it. It was, in a word, lovely. She smiled. “That’s beautiful. But the problem is, I’m not staying here. Neither you nor Thanatos can pressure me–“

“You were attacked at your college, were you not?” At her nod, he continued, “And at your home?”

She looked away. Did everyone know?

“The point is, you’re being attacked. You’re not safe at your college or at your home. Where will you go?” he asked, “What will you do? You’re a target.”

She sighed. She should at least go look at the house, right? “Fine. Can I see it?”

He smiled, almost a genuine one, too. “Yes. We will set out immediately.” He snapped his fingers and the three women in the room who had supplied the folders and glossy posters went into instant action. The papers were cleared away while another briskly trotted out of the room and down the hallway.

She felt an unexpected irritation with the man, and with Thanatos as well. She felt like she was being pushed into something she didn’t want. The house was beautiful, but what strings did it come with, even if she decided she liked it? She was particularly disturbed by James’ simple recounting of what she already objectively understood; gargoyles hired women to birth their children.

What exactly was Thanatos’ motivation here? He made it very clear that he didn’t care about her, but his behavior spoke far different from what his words did. He said she was just a human but he saved her, he protected her from a vampire, he was apparently buying her a house, he dipped into the all-important hoard…

She sighed and followed James outside. He picked her up and suddenly the world tilted and spun and flashed past with insane speed and fury. When they stopped, she was dizzy and disoriented.

“I’ll show you the inside first,” James said through the roaring in her head.

She straightened up and nodded. “Okay.” It was as weak as it sounded.

They reached the steps when a reverberating ‘boom’ shook the ground as Thanatos landed behind them.

“What are you doing?” Thanatos demanded.

“We’re looking at houses, as you requested,” James informed him, his tone surprisingly respectful, given his track record so far.

“This is not in the town,” Thanatos told him, scowling.

James backed up against the door frame. “She doesn’t want to live with werewolves,” he answered.

Thanatos’ eyes switched from James to her, and Alexis realized for the first time why everyone cringed from him.

“They are the best possible protectors,” he informed her. “There’s nothing to be afraid of. They leave on the full moon.”

She shook her head. “I don’t want to live there. This is a beautiful place, quiet and–“

“Isolated. It’s quiet and isolated. It is utterly unacceptable.” His gaze switched to James and Alexis could go back to admiring how powerful and sexy he was, even in ‘jeans and a t-shirt’ made out of skin. “I told you to get her a house in town, and instead you have isolated her. Do you wish to see the moon rise tomorrow night, or has all self-preservation fled you?”

James practically groveled then. “You said to give her what she wanted! Whatever she wanted…”

“In town!” Thanatos barked.

“I don’t want to live in the town!” Alexis yelled at him, irritated.

“Yes, you do,” he told her. “You want children at your house. You want activity and friends and–“

“None of those people know me, Thanatos. They’re not just going to send their kids over to my house–“

“They will,” he interrupted her. “I will see to it.”

“Or what, you’ll kill them?” She crossed her arms to glare at him.

He scowled. “Of course not. You don’t seriously think I’d kill them just for not visiting someone?”

“Then how?” she asked. “What possible motivation would they have to stop by the house of a person they don’t even know?”

“My hoard is quite substantial…” he trailed off as he looked at her, apparently clued in to her shock by her gaping mouth.

She snapped it shut and then asked, as calmly as she could muster, “You intend to buy me some friends? You can’t buy people, Thanatos.”

He obviously realized he’d done something wrong, as he scratched the back of his neck and looked perplexed. “Ah… no. I was going to buy you a chance to get to know them. Once they know you, they’ll adore you.”

“It doesn’t work like that. People you pay are employees, not friends.”

“You can’t live out here,” he said. “You won’t even have a chance to meet them, so how will you get to know them?”

“They’re werewolves, Thanatos,” she argued. “Who says I want to know them?”

His face closed off, just like that. His voice was colder than the morning after an ice storm, and just as discordant as he said, “So that’s the problem. Werewolves. Who would have thought that a woman who got herself arrested, and then attacked for protesting for gargoyles would be such a bigot!”

He looked at James, “Get her whatever house she wants. If she’d rather be isolated than make friends with those got-to-be-evil werewolves, then so be it.” The look he threw her was scathing, hard, dismissive.

He vanished before she could speak. But what was she going to say? What could she say? He was right. She just kept screwing up, time and again. But in fairness, did he expect her to just trust mythical monsters without knowing a thing about them?

“Take me to the town. I want to meet some of these werewolves and learn more about them and if I’d be safe.”

James looked at her like she was insane. “Of course you’d be safe. Even if you don’t trust them, do you genuinely think Thanatos would purposefully put you into a situation where you weren’t safe?”

“I don’t know. He keeps telling me I’m a useless human and then he buys me a house. I guess, though, when you have a hoard that nets three quarters of a million dollars from just a bag full, it’s not so hard to buy someone a house.”

“You really don’t know anything at all about gargoyles, do you?” he asked her. “Especially the one you’re involved with.”

“We’re not involved,” she growled. Much to her regret, if she were going to be honest about it. But then again, why would they be involved. Despite her earlier objections–and lies–to the scary vampire Thanatos had protected her from, she was considered ‘pleasantly plump’ by the world. And she wasn’t anywhere near a size six, either. Why would a guy like Thanatos be interested in a fat chick? Sympathy?

“I wouldn’t tell him that,” James told her. “No matter what he has said, he’s crazy about you.” He picked her up and the world flipped inside-out again as he flitted through the woods, past trees and over their fallen brethren.

Apparently, they were off to the werewolf village so Alexis could crap her pants with fear while meeting some perfectly sweet half human, half wolf beasts. Oh, the excitement!

Progress is always good, right?

Moving right along with regards to Love’s Armageddon. I think for me, the hardest parts of it ware coming up with similar but different names for things, places, people. I am leaving some non-trademarked Proper Nouns in there, but changing a lot of other ones. Always a challenge to find something that people will recognize as intended to remind them of something, but not a trademark infringement.

Sometimes, though, I wonder if I should even care. It’s just romance novels… they barely even count according to a lot of people, lol.

Publisher Requests Full Manuscript

After something over 40 rejection letters (that’s where I lost track–not great for my ego to keep count by that point, lol)… I have had a publisher request the full manuscript.

Who has had the good taste to be interested, you ask?

http://www.total-e-bound.com/

Yay for me, yay for them! Except that I’ve had publishers be so blunt as to say, “and don’t send anything else!” so it’s hard to get excited. What an excruciating process this is!

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