MAGIC’S SONG is out today!

So excited to be able to present my newest story – MAGIC’S SONG – to all of you!

Several months ago, Kristen Painter gave me the opportunity to write in the world of Nocturne Falls, which she’d created for her fun, light paranormal series. I’ve been a fan of hers for years, and I glommed onto this series the day I heard about it. So when she asked if I wanted to write there?

Oh heck yeah!

It took a while to get the right characters, the right story, and the right tone, but it finally all came together, and voila! Here you go!

Welcome to Nocturne Falls, where there’s a supernatural on every corner, if you have the magic to see them.

Trick Scanlon is introduced to town when a playful horse nearly drowns him. Saved by a mermaid’s song, he’s just looking for a place to catch his breath. He never expects to be so drawn to his beautiful savior.

Daria Don’t-Call-Me-A-Mermaid Czernovitch has changed so much her stalker won’t ever find her. She has great friends – witches, gargoyles, and fairies – and she feels safe… until a former Army Ranger turned country music star pulls her into his spotlight.

Can Trick find his own magic? And will his fame threaten the anonymity Daria values so much? They make sweet harmony together, but one sour note could ruin it all.

Winning things!

So I’m part of a couple of very cool promotions taking place over the next few days!

  1. Over 60 Sci Fi Romance authors are participating in a chance for you to win our books, PLUS a new Kindle!! You could win a copy of my story, A WOLF TO WATCH OVER ME to start out your Wolves of Fenrir collection. All you have to do is click over to the SCI FI ROMANCE GIVEAWAY and enter!
  2. For a taste of handsome silver foxes and their intrepid heroines, 24 authors are hosting a Facebook hop, and many of us are giving away prizes! You can check out the available books at Seasoned Romance: Love Knows No Age, which is featuring my story, SILVER WOLF RISING. THEN, hop on over to my FB page and comment to be entered for a chance to win the first three Wolves of Fenrir books, signed just for you! I’ll draw for the winner on Sat, Dec 10.
  3. And I’m just sayin’, but if you sign up for my newsletter, you’re going to get an extra chance to win that signed book bundle. *wink wink nudge nudge* (newsletter signup)

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Who wants a teaser?

Here’s a snippet from THE WOLF WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD in the VIKINGS WILD antho.

Rig was sweating. Tear a diplomat a new asshole? Not a problem. Chase down an assassin? All in a day’s work.

Kiss the right woman? His fingers trembled.

In a split second, he had to make a command decision. Soft and gentle, working his way over to her lips? Strong and commanding, pushing forward, engines at full?

She pushed up onto her toes and took conscious choice away from him.

Mirea was tiny, a mere handful to him. He bent at the knees to meet her, and scooped her up with an arm under her ass. No groping, no squeezing. He needed to know her taste before any of that.

And her taste was exquisite. Honey, as he expected. Everything about her reminded him of encompassing sweetness, but there was something else about her that was dark and rich with a little spicy heat. Her soft lips opened under pressure and her slight moan passed between them.

Tiny, delicate hands settled on his shoulders and slid to his neck. He’d have thought such small fingers would tickle, but her touch wasn’t tentative in the least. She glided her hands firmly to his jaw, spurring him on.

He responded, sliding one hand up her spine until his fingers were buried in her warm, sweet-smelling hair. With a simple bend of his wrist, he guided her head to the side, giving him more room to move her where he wanted her.

Rig demanded more. He moved his tongue to taste and found it dueling with hers. He pushed forward, needing to be inside, devouring her mouth, giving her a taste of what was to come.

But she didn’t simply take, she gave back by swirling her tongue around his and sucking control away from him. The sensation shot through him, and his cock was harder than it had ever been. Fuck. He was losing his mind over this little human. And he still had an assassin to torture… interrogate… ask polite questions.

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Final Fenrir Story Goes Live Tomorrow!!

I know.

I’m a little sad, too.

But the fourth and final Wolves of Fenrir story – THE WOLF WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD – goes live tomorrow in the VIKINGS WILD box set!

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6 sexy paranormal and sci-fi Viking romances – just for you!

Here’s the blurb for THE WOLF WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD:

Rig sidUlfr wants peace on Earth. Literally. As the general in command of the Fenrir troops on Earth, his mission is to maintain the security of the planet in the aftermath of an intergalactic war. And if alien Axis terrorists would quit trying to kill him and the people he cares about, that would help, too.

Mirea Randolph is his human interpreter. She may speak half a dozen languages, but words won’t be enough to keep her and Rig safe. When an attempt is made on Rig’s life to derail the fragile peace process, she ends up involved in layers of deception she won’t be able to talk her way out of in any language. Diplomacy can’t cover corruption for long, and they need to root it out at the source.

Their attraction burns laser hot as they work to keep Earth safe from a new wave of enemy invasions. But once the job is done, will Rig have to go back into the cold alone, or will Mirea keep him warm?

Enjoy the story!!

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SILVER WOLF RISING is finally out in the wild!

*Excited author flail!*

This book was a challenge – literally – someone on Romance Divas said, “Why don’t we see more books with older heroes and heroines? Let’s write some!”

So I did. 🙂 After all, surely some of the characters in my Wolves of Fenrir series had parents or mentors or…y’know, old people in their lives. *gg*

God. Remember when we used to say things like that? And now we’re the old people? Except I just don’t feel that old. Maybe it’s the nerd t-shirts and Chucks that keep me young. So what if I have to put arch supports in my Chucks? Those things are flat. That doesn’t make me old. Does it?

Anyway, it’s time for some of that silver hair to shimmer in the sun. Or in the blackness of space.

Enjoy SILVER WOLF RISING!

Hot, silver-haired Viking, wolf-shifter hero, heroine with a streak of gray and a streak of stubborn, plus an alien invasion – what more could you ask for?

Fate couldn’t have picked a worse moment to bring two lonely souls together.

Berserker warrior and drill sergeant Niall is being forced to retire from the Fenrir Army he’s faithfully served for most of his life. Miserable and bitter, he’s on the pack ship, waiting for a transport back to his home planet to be a farmer. Until trouble steps right on his prosthetic foot just as all Hel breaks loose.

Widowed Dagny is on the pack ship waiting for a transport down to Earth, searching for a new purpose in this next phase of her life — one that isn’t centered around her grown children. But her new plans definitely don’t involve following a cranky old soldier into the dark to survive.

When enemy Axis powers invade the ship, blasting up the heat on a cold war, Niall and Dagny have to team up to save themselves and their shipmates, and to explore the lifescent that is drawing them together.

Together for now, but will fate be enough to keep them that way after the battle is over?

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Amazon: http://amzn.to/2caB7kk
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2cEEYW0
Apple: http://apple.co/2cHNAwk
BN: http://bit.ly/2cndFMJ
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2cEGDLs

Sneak peek from SILVER WOLF RISING

sfrb-showcasebannerWanna see a little hint of our silver haired hero, Niall sidKalvr?

***

He was going to have to shift. He hated shifting in front of people. He did it with his trainees once, right at the beginning, because it was good for them to be scared shitless, but with this woman… He didn’t want her to see him. He didn’t want her to see him as a cripple.

But danger was close, and the vargulf rose within him, silent and deadly as only a monster could be. Bone and muscle cracked and lengthened, giving him nearly three extra feet in height and a hundred pounds of bulk, delivered to his shoulders and thighs where they would do the most good.

The pelt stripe that was one of the distinguishing features of his race spread out from his spine to envelop his body in tough, dense, silver-tipped fur. His skull rippled as the bony plates shifted from their round form to an elongated shape that allowed for the growth of a lupine jaw. Viciously sharp fangs pushed aside blunt human teeth as claws sprang from his fingertips.

In vargulf, Niall was neither man nor wolf, but the true child of his ancestors – the Great Wolf Fenris and his Valkyrie mate, who had fled Asgard and the battle of Ragnarok, and traveled to make a home on a distant planet.

The shift was over in moments, and Niall felt the familiar lust for conquered blood sizzle in his veins. But before he could begin maiming and killing, there was one last thing he had to do. The thing that brought a bitter pang to the glory of his vargulf form.

His prosthesis had been fitted with an enhancement that was both measured to his battle form, and operable with clawed fingers. Three pressure points extended the limb with an almost inaudible click and triggered a release for extra supports to keep up with the change in his body mass.

For all that the new leg was tougher than bone, the weakness of his newly injured missing limb ripped at him. It made him a lesser warrior, an imperfect Fenris. He was ashamed that his woman, that anyone would see him like this. A three-legged dog.

But he had no choice. Even a crippled wolf could still fight, and he would fight to the death to protect her.

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Amazon: http://amzn.to/2caB7kk

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2cEEYW0

Apple: http://apple.co/2cHNAwk

BN: http://bit.ly/2cndFMJ

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2cEGDLs

sfrb-showcasebanner

If you liked this snippet, try some other great SFR reads at http://sfrcontests.blogspot.com/p/sfr-brigade-presents.html

Favorite line from today

I don’t write in my blog enough. I’m just going to start putting random thoughts in here and see if that helps me post more.

Anyway, my favorite line from today’s writing:

A chuckle crept out of her. So inappropriate. They were kneeling over a dead body, and its blood was drying on their skin, gluing them together like the world’s most macabre craft project.

From The Wolf Who Came In From the Cold, coming Nov 2016

Writing Your Synopsis

I admit it, I’m a freak.

I kind of like writing synopses.

I hate writing blurbs, but synopses don’t bother me. I’m not sure why. I guess it’s the big picture storyteller in me. Writing the story itself is nothing but detail after detail. It’s storytelling on a microscopic scale. But a synopsis is big, broad strokes! I love those.

I run a monthly writer’s group at my local library for all kinds of writers – fiction and non-fiction, plus the occasional poet or screenwriter – and they’re mostly beginners. I may not know a lot, but I can at least say I’ve been around this game for a good, long time. And if I don’t know the answer, I know someone who does. Not to mention, my Google-fu is super strong. I can research like nobody’s business.

This month, the topic was Writing a Synopsis. I decided to start there because we’re doing Query Letters next month.

First, what is this creature?

It’s a selling tool. Approach it that way. This is you taking off your word-spattered creative artist smock and putting on your most tastefully sexy business suit. Because you’re done being all “Wheeee!” It’s down to getting paid now.

You’ve written your genius query letter to your dream agent/editor, and they’ve responded with, “Sure! Send the first three chapters, plus a synopsis!”

After you’ve sacrificed the appropriate snow white goat to thank the writing gods, you go to your computer and immediately freak out. Because how are you going to fully wow the agent/editor with your brilliantly crafted tome in just … how many pages? They tend to come in two lengths. Either cram it all onto one page (eek!) or deliver a three to five page synopsis.

How do you cram 90K of awesome into 500 words?

You tell the story.

How many times have you heard everyone else say, “Show, don’t tell!”

Forget it. When it comes to the synopsis, tell, tell, tell.

Marissa Meyer, the author of the Luna Chronicles YA series, wrote a blog post a couple of years ago about writing synopses at http://www.marissameyer.com/blogtype/6-steps-for-writing-a-book-synopsis/ . I think it covers pretty much all the bases.

This is just an overview of her post, and I HIGHLY recommend clicking over and reading the entire thing.

Step 1: Skim through the manuscript, noting the important events of each chapter.

 Step 2. Embellish the beginning.

Step 3: String your short chapter summaries together, using standard synopsis formatting.*

Step 4: Read through, with a focus on plot.

Step 5. Read through, with a focus on character arc.

Step 6. Trim and edit to the appropriate length.

She uses the synopsis she wrote for CINDER as an example. I think you should read the book because it’s made of awesome, but even if you haven’t, her synopsis examples do a great job illustrating a few of the big moments – not only about the plot, but about Cinder’s character arc. But read the book anyway.

If you need a differing viewpoint, try boiling down your story to these steps from Andy Rayne. He’s not talking synopses in this post, but a synopsis is honestly just distilling your story down to its basic structure.

5 Essential Parts

http://andyrane.blogspot.com/2013/05/lets-tell-story.html

And if we’re going to talk about story structure, there’s no one better at it than Michael Hauge. If you follow his 6 Stage Plot Structure, then you can slim down your story into those Outer and Inner Journey stages.

Michael Hauge's Six Stages of Plot Structure, Updated for 2014

It’s pretty simple from there. Don’t make this more complicated than it needs to be. Just tell your story, with a beginning, middle and end.

Good grief, I nearly forgot. Whatever you do, tell them how it ends! Do not tease the agent/editor with “If you want to know how it ends, you’ll have to request the full.”

Auto-bin. Do not screw with these people. Don’t be cute, be professional. Remember, you’re wearing your business suit, not a babydoll negligee.

Here’s a bit that is occasionally debated. Do you write your synopsis in your voice, or are you giving just the facts, ma’am? I’m personally a proponent of the synopsis with voice. They’re more fun to write, and, presumably, to read. As long as you’re getting all the information in there, why not make it interesting? My personal tip for writing your synopsis in your voice – as soon as you write The End, write the synopsis. You’ve already got the story in your head, so go ahead and scribble it all down. Yes, it’ll suck. That’s why the good Lord invented editing. But if you already have it down in your voice, it’ll be easier to maintain that style as you edit.

Of course, if you’re writing a police procedural, a la Dragnet, maybe “Just the facts, ma’am” is just the style you’re looking for!

Definitely have someone look over your synopsis before you send it to make sure you haven’t left anything out. Plot holes = bad. And you know your story so well that it’s hard to tell if you’ve left out something important. Someone who hasn’t read your work will wonder how Frodo hooked up with Strider if you forget to include a sentence about the Prancing Pony, yeah? (And if you didn’t get that reference, go sacrifice twelve hours of your life to Lord of the Rings, then get back to me.)

If I remember, I’ll write up my Query Letter presentation next month. But, umm, don’t hold your breath. 😉

 

*Notes on formatting your synopsis:

Single spaced, if 1 page. Double space anything longer.

1” margins all around.

Indent paragraphs, or add space between paragraphs, but not both.

3rd person, present tense. No matter what person or tense you wrote the story in, write the synopsis in 3rd present.

Capitalize the name of each major character the first time they’re introduced. (Only include major characters and important secondaries – don’t clutter up your synopsis with everyone who happens along the way.)