Thursday, April 30, 2015

Book Blast & Interview: Chaos Broken by @RbkahTurner

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clip_image002Chaos Broken

Chronicles of Applecross

Book 3

Rebekah Turner

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Escape Publishing

Date of Publication: 22 April 2015

ISBN: 9780857992413

ASIN: B00TQIML3G

Number of pages: 225

Word Count: 80,000

Book Description:

The final installment of the Chronicles of Applecross trilogy finds Lora left in charge – and quickly losing control.

Lora Blackgoat is in charge. But after losing a lucrative contract, it looks like she’s also running her beloved benefactor's mercenary company into the ground while he's away on holidays. Her problems double when she discovers Roman, exiled nephilim warrior and current confusing love interest, is brokering a dangerous peace agreement.

When a new enemy emerges from across the ocean, threatening to tear the city apart, Lora finds herself taking on new and surprising allies, finally acknowledging the prophecy that haunts her and using it to her advantage.

Available at Amazon iTunes ARe Google Play

excerpt

Headmistress Poulter hadn’t changed. She scared the crap out of me when I was ten and she scared the crap out of me now, even though I was a mature, genuine grown up and sitting in Blackgoat Watch’s big boss chair. Poulter’s body was all sharp angles under a shapeless dress, her iron-grey hair scraped into a tight bun. I was trying to pay attention, I was, but Poulter had been talking for a good ten minutes about her missing cat, Blinky, and I was finding it hard to focus.

Not for the first time I mentally cursed Gideon, my benefactor and boss of Blackgoat Watch, for ducking out of the city with my adoptive mother, Orella. They’d left Harken a month ago on a holiday to the sunny continent of Eral and Gideon had left me in charge of Blackgoat’s stable of Runners for hire. This meant I had to meet clients and smile and be nice. Which was hard. Especially when Poulter kept referring to Blinky as her missing pussy. Harder still was not fidgeting when Poulter fixed me with that look, the one that suggested she could see every sin I’d ever committed. And if I was being honest, there’d been a few since I’d last seen her at the age of 14, when I’d decided my academic career was over and my Runner career was about to start.

Reuben Crowhurst, a fellow Runner, sat beside Poulter wearing a suitably concerned expression that I suspected he’d been practising. In fact, his support for me in my temporary role as boss had been so efficient, I was suspicious that he was going to hit me up for a raise while Gideon was out of the country. He was also a griorwolf, not that he readily advertised the fact he could go all beast-monster if he lost control of himself.

‘Of course we understand how difficult this is,’ Crowhurst was saying. ‘Not only was he your pet, but the school mascot.’ He smiled at Poulter, giving her the full, charming Reuben Crowhurst treatment. I had to admit, he looked pretty smart today. His blond hair was brushed neatly, beard freshly trimmed, and he wore crisp charcoal pants and a snappy, velvet-trimmed vest. A ruby earring winked from one ear and he smelled of a very manly cologne.

One corner of my mouth curled up. If Crowhurst thought he could hit me up for a raise while Gideon was away, he was going to get an education. I tried to focus on the conversation, mentally calculating how much I could bill for searching for a cat. Unfortunately, it wasn’t going to be enough to see us out of the financial hole Blackgoat had recently fallen into, which wasn’t really my fault.

‘Lora Blackgoat. Are you paying attention?’ Poulter’s voice was a cane-crack across my thoughts and I gave a guilty jump.

‘Ah…yes. Pussy. I mean, cat. Missing. Blinky.’ I glanced down at my notes, which consisted of curly doodles and a couple of hex symbols. ‘That about sums it up, right?’

‘I can tell she’s not listening to a word I’ve said.’ Poulter shifted her glare to Crowhurst.

‘She always used to get that look, like nothing else mattered but her.’

‘I’m listening, I’m listening,’ I protested. ‘I’ll send someone over first thing tomorrow to start asking around. See if the neighbours have seen him.’

Poulter’s eyebrows pinched. ‘I’d rather you saw to this personally, Lora.’

Crowhurst gave me a significant look, which I knew meant I was supposed to agree with the client.

‘Of course,’ I said through clenched teeth. ‘I’ll look after this personally, Lady Poulter. First thing tomorrow.’

‘You couldn’t start today?’

‘Unfortunately, I’ve got another appointment this afternoon. But I can assure you, I’ll be there tomorrow, very first thing.’ I made a show of checking my notes. ‘Can you tell me if there’s anyone who’d want to do your pussy mischief?’ I kept my face straight, but a flush crept up Crowhurst’s neck. He shot me a warning look.

Poulter sniffed. ‘There have been a few troublesome students of late. One in particular. His name was Kalin and he led a rotten pack of them. I expelled him last term for stabbing a teacher with a pencil.’

‘What’s Kalin’s family name?’ I asked.

‘He had none. He was from the orphanage.’

‘Was?’

‘I heard he disappeared last month. I don’t know the particulars.’

‘Rest assured, we’ll have answers for you soon enough about Blinky.’ Crowhurst stood, letting me know this would probably be a good place to end the interview. I stood as well, grateful that Crowhurst was around. If I had to be honest, he’d really stepped up and helped smooth over my rough edges when talking to clients. Maybe the bastard did deserve a raise.

‘Thank you for calling Blackgoat Watch, Lady Poulter,’ I said.

Poulter’s eyes narrowed. ‘Did Gideon really leave you in charge of this organisation?’

My chest burned and I realised I was holding my breath, trying to dazzle her with my dimpled smile. But Poulter didn’t look particularly charmed by it, so I exhaled and rubbed my cheeks with a scowl. ‘Yes. I was left in charge. Why?’

Poulter glanced at Crowhurst. ‘You are helping her, aren’t you?’

Crowhurst gave Poulter a noncommittal shrug, then manoeuvred her gracefully out of the office, filling the air with easy small talk. I slumped back into Gideon’s chair, the leather squeaking. Opening the top drawer, I pulled out Gideon’s vodka stash and picked a glass that wasn’t too dirty. I poured myself half a shot. I was still staring at it when Crowhurst walked back in and frowned at the glass. I hesitated briefly before topping it up.

‘That doesn’t look like a great idea,’ Crowhurst said.

My eyes rose to his meet his steady gaze. ‘Were we in the same meeting? Come on. A missing cat?’

Crowhurst sat with a sigh. ‘Business is slow. We have to take any job we can for now.’

‘Business is more than slow.’ I nudged the full shot with a finger, watching the clear liquid slop over the edges. Blackgoat Watch had recently been slapped with a bill for back taxes. Gideon hadn’t been too worried, since I’d been offered a profitable contract by the Order of Guides, a militant organisation associated with the powerful Church of Higher Path. The Order had mistakenly taken my white hair to mean I was a Witch Hunter, despite my assurances that I wasn’t. I couldn’t sniff out a witch or warlock if my life depended on it. But the Grigori priest who ran the Order in Harken still wanted me to work with their Regulators for a season in a Witch Hunter capacity, hunting heretics, keeping the peace and generally poo-pooing all things fun.

With the earnings of my contract, Blackgoat should have been fine. But two things had happened in the last year to change that. Firstly, raiding pirates had affected sea trade routes and it was bad enough that the city was dragged into a recession. And the second reason? My contract with the Order was terminated after only three weeks. I was cited as being uncontrollable. Unpredictable. Not a team player. Of course, if anyone was to blame for this mess it was Gideon for green-lighting the idea in the first place. As if I was going to fit in with a militant religious order. Don’t wear skirts. Don’t wear heels. Don’t wear your hair down. Don’t show up drunk. All those rules had made my head hurt. Still, it had been quite unfair when everyone suspected me of starting the fire in the sacred library.

‘What do you think we should do?’ I pushed the shot glass aside. My moment of weakness had passed and now I just wanted to sulk in a dark room.

‘We’ll do our job,’ Crowhurst said. ‘Because we’re professionals.’

A crashing sound came from the ground floor, where Blackgoat’s reception and kitchen were located, and muffled shouts sounded through the floorboards. Crowhurst and I exchanged a startled glance, then sprinted for the door. Crowhurst yanked a dagger from his sleeve and I grabbed my goat-headed duelling cane. Downstairs, we followed the noise to the back courtyard, where a group of Runners shouted encouragement at two grappling men.

‘Break it up!’

My shout was drowned in a chorus of cheers and no one paid me any attention. Crowhurst tried to pull the brawling men apart and copped a jarring knock to his chin for his trouble. The Runners cheered louder and Crowhurst retreated, rubbing his jaw with a pained expression. I clicked the button on my arm-rig and a three-shot derringer snapped from my sleeve. I lifted an arm and fired once in the air, the sharp crack bouncing off the courtyard’s tall brick walls. The Runners fell silent and the fighting men drew apart, chests heaving and clothes dishevelled.

‘Everybody out.’ I shoved the gun back up my sleeve, then pointed at the two Runners who had been fighting. ‘Everyone but you two.’

No one argued. Stories about me had circulated around the city, to the point that they had entered a kind of urban legend status. Stories about the female Witch Hunter who could wield Outland weapons, guns that were a vast improvement on the flintlocks and wheellocks that operated within The Weald. Whatever mojo kept the realm hidden from the modern world also prevented modern machinery from working here. City philosophers had often cited this as a ‘state of grace’ and a sign of The Weald’s purity. I took it as a sign the city philosophers didn’t get out much. The fact that I’d never had trouble with modern machinery stalling inside The Weald was a little secret I’d tried to keep to myself. Being able to blend into the background was what kept you alive in the Runner industry.

The two fighters glared at each other, fists clenched by their sides. One was a slender man called Bone, while the other looked like a shaved gorilla and called himself Grubber. From his giant size I was pretty sure he was otherkin, but he hid it well enough I never asked. After all, it was common enough for otherkin to hide their unusual features, a result of their mixed blood of mystical races, especially with the prejudice that still existed in the city against them.

Crowhurst loitered, obviously thinking I wanted him to stay. Like I couldn’t bust balls on my own.

I served up a stern frown, channelling my inner Gideon. ‘What in hellfires is wrong with you two? What if a client had walked in and seen this pathetic excuse for professionalism?’

Grubber scowled. ‘He insulted my wife.’

‘What’d he say?’ I asked

‘He said my wife is so fat, I’d have to roll twice to get off her.’

Bone rubbed the back of his neck. ‘I meant it nicely. She’s just a lot of woman.’

I pinched the bridge of my nose and sighed. I was at a loss as to how to proceed, but when in doubt, I knew to start yelling at someone. I fixed Bone with a glare and raised my voice.

‘What’s wrong with you, making jokes about a co-worker’s wife?’

‘You know she’s sensitive about her weight,’ Grubber muttered.

‘Easy now.’ Crowhurst stepped forward, hands raised. ‘I’m sure it was just a misunderstanding. I’m sure she’s a real lovely woman.’

‘You making fun?’ Grubber bristled at him. ‘You got something to say about my wife as well?’

‘Nobody wants to crack any more jokes about your wife,’ I told Grubber. ‘And this isn’t the place for you two to be fighting and breaking furniture.’ I stabbed a finger at Grubber.

‘Don’t be so sensitive.’ My finger shifted to Bone. ‘And you…keep your opinions to yourself. Now, both of you get the hell out of my sight.’

Grubber and Bone scowled at me, but I just planted my hands on my hips and glowered back. Just because they looked tough didn’t mean I couldn’t plant my velvet brocade boots between their legs and fell them like trees. Plus, right now I paid the bills and that pretty much ensured I got my way. Grubber and Bone righted the chairs and shuffled out of the courtyard, glaring at each other. Crowhurst bought his hands together in a slow clap.

‘Well done, boss. Saying things like you mean it. You’ll have this place ship-shape before Gideon gets back, no problems.’

‘Yeah, yeah,’ I sighed. ‘Except the best job we have on the books is searching for my old headmistress’s missing cat.’

‘You mean, her pussy?’ Crowhurst shook his head. ‘I nearly swallowed my tongue when you asked who’d want to do it mischief. You shouldn’t make fun of our clients.’

I snorted. ‘She did bring out the juvenile in me. But if we don’t pick up some jobs soon, Gideon will be coming back to a bankrupt company. Maybe I should turn this place into a bar and dice joint.’

‘You’d just drink and gamble the profits away,’ Crowhurst pointed out. ‘Maybe you should write and let Gideon know how bad things have gotten.’

‘No way.’ I righted a chair and sat down. My bad leg ached from the sudden rush downstairs and I ran a practised hand over the knotted muscles. A horse accident at sixteen had put me in a hospital with a fractured pelvis and cracked spine. My recovery had been long and painful, leaving me with a limp and an incurable fear of horses.

‘I can handle this,’ I said. ‘I told Gideon I’d pick up new work after losing the Order contract and I can’t let him down.’

Crowhurst folded his arms and gave me a slightly bemused smile. ‘You mind telling me how you lost the contract, exactly? You never did tell anyone, and Gideon wouldn’t say.’

‘It happened. Let’s leave it at that. But it really wasn’t my fault.’

‘I heard it was because you slept with a Grigori priest.’

‘Ewww.’ I make a gagging noise. ‘Really?’

‘Did it have anything to do with that big fire they had in their library?’

‘Just let it go,’ I snapped.

‘Whatever you say, boss.’

Tension rode up my neck and I rubbed it with a groan. ‘I really screwed things up.’

‘I’m sure you tried your hardest.’

I didn’t answer, because a small part of me wondered if I really did try hard enough. The fire had been an accident, but it had also been in a long list of infractions I’d committed while contracting with the Order. Fraternising with darkcraft users. Not adhering to the dress code. Illegal consumption of alcohol while on duty. Sacrilegious games of dice with the cooks inside the Order compound. The list was crowded. It had been a busy three weeks and I probably hadn’t been that rebellious since I was at school. Gideon had always said I had a problem with authority. Fortunately, his own vices were worse than mine, so we always got along just fine.

Crowhurst cleared his throat. I realised he was working up to saying something, but he looked worried about how I’d react.

‘What is it?’ I asked. ‘If you’ve got an idea, spit it out.’

He scratched his close cropped beard. ‘Someone approached me with a proposition. Initially I told them there was no way you’d be interested.’ He shrugged. ‘But now, seeing as we’ve got our backs to the wall, maybe you’ll consider it.’

‘What kind of proposition and from who?’ I eyed him suspiciously.

‘From whom,’ Crowhurst corrected absently. ‘And let me get more details. Make sure the money’s worth it.’

‘Sounds like something I don’t want to know about.’ I rolled my shoulders, trying to disperse my building tension. ‘So when you want to talk about it, bring beer to cushion the blow.’

In the distance, the city clock rang out to announce mid-afternoon and I knew had to get moving if I wanted to reach my destination in the Outlands that night. It wasn’t a paying job, but rather a chance to see Roman, an exiled nephilim warrior I was sort of involved with. Sort of. Gideon and Orella hadn’t been happy with my role in sneaking Roman to the Outlands, where he could recover from the madness some nephilim were cursed with. They were equally displeased with me shooting out every chance I got to see him.

‘I’ve got to go,’ I told Crowhurst. ‘I have that meeting tonight I told you about.’

His face darkened. ‘I should go with you.’

‘I don’t need a babysitter, thanks,’ I said. ‘And I wouldn’t go if it wasn’t important.’

Crowhurst made a disgusted sound. ‘Meeting up with your ex-Regulator lover boy isn’t more important than sticking around to keep Blackgoat running.’

‘I’ll only be gone the night. And it’s not just to see Roman. There’s an important sit-down happening and I was asked to attend.’

‘What kind of important sit-down?’ Crowhurst asked, eyeing me suspiciously.

I threw my hands up. ‘Just relax, will you? I told you, I’ll be back here tomorrow morning, bright and early to look for this freaking cat.’

‘Fine. But if you’re not here, I’m coming to get you.’

‘I can take care of myself.’ I stood and grabbed my cane. ‘I’m not kidding. And this job you mentioned? By all means, look into it. I’m desperate enough to try anything.’

A sly look slid over Crowhurst’s face. ‘I won’t forget you said that.’

  character

Character Name: Lora Blackgoat

Character Bio: Lora Blackgoat is a morally ambiguous smuggler and mercenary. Adopted by a witch-elf as a babe, Lora Blackgoat now works these twisted streets of Applecrross as a blade for hire for a satyr with no regard for social niceties.

 

Describe yourself what is your worst and best quality?

Honesty. I have a wondrous gift for it, no matter how unappreciated. I have no worst qualities.

What is the one thing you wish other people knew about you?

Nothing. People need to mind their own business.

What is your biggest secret something no one knows about?

No comment.

What are you most afraid of?

Horses. They have shifty eyes.

What do you want more than anything?

Money, freedom. Did I mention money?

What is your relationship status?

Depends on the kind of day I'm having.

How would you describe your sense of fashion?

Eclectically amazing. I leave people stunned by my choices.

How much of a rebel are you?

I'm not a rebel, but it's also not my fault if some laws are stupid.

What do you considered to be your greatest achievement?

Being able to chug a tankard of beer in twenty seconds flat.

What is your idea of happiness?

Winning whatever card or dice game I’m playing.

What is your current state of mind?

Slightly intoxicated.

What is your most treasured possession?

The dueling cane given to me by my benefactor, Gideon. Touch it at your peril.

What is your most marked characteristic?

My winning personality.

What is it that you, most dislike?

Mondays. People.

Which living person do you, most despise?

 The list is too long.

What is your greatest regret?

 Regret is for suckers.

What is the quality you most like in a man?

Doing everything I tell him to.

What is the quality you most like in a woman?

Doing everything I tell her to.

Who is your favorite hero in fiction?

Don't read much.

Which living person do you most admire?

My benefactor, and adoptive mother.

If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?

A new hip bone would be great.

What is your motto?

I'm not always right, but I'm never wrong.

  abouttheauthor

clip_image004

Rebekah lives in sunny Queensland, Australia. An avid writer since she could scrawl on her bedroom walls, she has progressed from rainbow unicorn tales to stories of dark fantasy with lashings of romance and a sprinkling of horror.

Her vices include in-depth critiques of B grade action and horror movies and buying stationery she doesn’t need.

Web: www.rebekahturner.net

Facebook: www.facebook.com/rebekahturnerauthor

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/book/show/24983636-chaos-broken

Twitter: @RbkahTurner

Book Blast, Giveaway & Interview: Pyromancist by @CharmainePauls

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clip_image002_thumb[1]Pyromancist

Seven Forbidden Arts

Book 1

Charmaine Pauls

Genre: Paranormal Erotic Romance

Publisher: Satin Romance,

an imprint of Mélange Books

Date of Publication: 19 March 2015

ISBN: 978-1680460339

ASIN: B00UFW1CDW

Number of pages: 252

Word Count: 101 000

Cover Artist: Caroline Andrus

Book Description:

When you play with fire, you get burned.

At the same time as mysterious fires commence to rage through Clelia d’Ambois’ home village in Brittany, France, she starts sleepwalking. Daughter of a Japanese orphan, Clelia’s heritage is riddled with dark secrets that threaten anyone she loves. In a recurring nightmare she sees Josselin, the haunted man who abandoned their village nine years earlier, come for her, but she doesn’t know why. All she knows is that she has to run. As fast as she can.

Leader of a paranormal crime taskforce, Josselin de Arradon is called back to his hometown with a mission–find and kill the firestarter responsible for Larmor-Baden’s blazing destruction. Sensing that Clelia is the key to solving the crime, Josselin kidnaps her to use her as bait. The battle doesn’t turn out quite as he expected. Nothing could have prepared him for the truth, or the depth of his desire for his prisoner.

This is Book 1 of the Seven Forbidden Arts series, but also reads as a stand-alone.

This book contains adult content with explicit language and consummated love scenes. Suited for an audience of 18+.

Available at Amazon BN Satin Romance Smashwords Lulu

excerpt

Josselin had only spoken to her once. It was on a summer day after school. She had wandered to the dense forest at the back of the schoolyard because she knew that was where she would find him. She stood behind a tree and watched him–studied him–the movement of his hand as he smoked a forbidden cigarette, the manner in which he pulled his fingers through his dark hair, and the way he laughed loudly into his gang of friends, even if his eyes cried, or blazed.

That day, however, he wasn’t with his friends. He was with a girl. Her name was Thiphaine and she was the most popular girl in school. She was blonde and slim and beautiful with blue eyes and red painted fingernails. Clelia watched from her hiding place as Josselin slowly backed Thiphaine up until her body pressed against the trunk of the witch tree. It was a thuja occidentalis but the townsfolk had baptized it so because of its twisted and crippled branches. The setting was eerie for a romantic adventure, and yet, it suited Josselin. He seemed right at home, while Thiphaine looked around nervously. His hand went to her cheek, his palm huge and dark and rough against the porcelain paleness of Thiphaine’s face, while his other hand slipped under her blouse. His gray eyes looked like melted steel when he lowered his head.

His shoulder-length black hair fell forward when he pressed his lips to Thiphaine’s and he moved his hand from her cheek to brush it back behind his ear. Clelia remembered the deliberate movement of his jaw, the way the muscles dimpled in his cheek, the hand under Thiphaine’s blouse, all the while maintaining his composure while Thiphaine came undone under his caress. The beautiful girl made low moaning sounds. Her knees buckled, but Josselin, without breaking the kiss, grabbed her waist, pulling her so tightly into him that her back arched, keeping her up with his arm while he made her weak with his touch and his tongue.

Watching them ignited both yearning and pain inside of Clelia. The hurt she felt speared her heart. The aching in her soul was suddenly greater than the heat in her pores and on her cheeks, but she couldn’t tear her stare away from the forbidden sight. It was Iwig, a boy from her class, who broke the painful spell when he discovered her behind the tree.

“What have we here?” he said.

His eyes darted to the distance where Josselin and Thiphaine were embracing. He knew what she had been doing. He was a tall, blond boy with a strong build, and Clelia disliked him for his habit of hunting abandoned cats with his pellet gun.

“A peeping tom,” he said, taking a step toward her.

When she tried to back away, he grabbed her long braid and tugged it painfully, causing her to yelp.

“Not so fast, witch.” He grabbed her arm and hauled her so that she stumbled into him. “You like to watch, don’t you?” He grinned. “How about a taste of the real thing?”

She opened her mouth to scream, but he had already brought his down and kissed her so hard that his teeth split her lower lip. In reflex her free hand shot up, aiming for his cheek, and collided with its target. The force of the blow shot Iwig’s head back and froze him in his action, but only for a second, before Clelia saw his arm lift. Not able to free herself from his grip, she cowered instinctively, but instead of his fist coming down on her, another pair of arms grabbed Iwig by his shoulders and flung him to the ground.

When she looked up, she stared into the face of Josselin, and what she saw was frightening. His features were twisted into a terrifying expression, and before she could say anything, Josselin bent down and lifted Iwig by his jacket lapels. Iwig’s legs dangled, flapping like fish on soil, while his arms flayed in the air as if swatting flies. Josselin let go of one side of the jacket, his fist arching and hooking under Iwig’s chin, while at the same time unknotting his other hand from the fabric of the jacket. The impact sent Iwig flying through the air. When he hit the ground, she could hear the loud thump as the air was knocked from his lungs. Josselin moved forward, his arms away from his body, his fingers flexing, his shoulders pushed forward, until he stood wide-legged over the submissive body of Iwig. Iwig lifted his hands in front of his face, mumbling pleas for mercy.

“If you ever touch a girl in that way again, I’ll hang you from a tree under a pack of wild boars and watch them eat you from your feet up to your useless dick, until they rip your stomach open and your insides fall out and you beg me to die,” Josselin said.

He spoke very softly, but the woods had suddenly gone quiet. His voice all but echoed in the absence of the sound of birds and wind. From the corner of her eye, Clelia noticed Thiphaine who stood to the side, hugging herself.

“And if you ever lift your hand to a woman again, I’ll cut off your balls and make you eat them and then I’ll feed you to the boars. Do you understand?”

Iwig tried to scurry away on his elbows, but Josselin stepped on his jacket.

“I asked if you understand.”

“Yes. Yes,” Iwig said. He had started crying.

When Josselin lifted his boot, Iwig scrambled to his feet. He didn’t look at Clelia before he ran down the path in the direction of the school. Only then did Josselin turn to her. She shook from head to toe while Josselin studied her quietly. After a moment he walked to her, took her chin in his hand and tilted her head.

“You’re bleeding,” he said, trailing his thumb over her lower lip.

And then he did something that shocked her wildly. He brought his thumb to his lips, slowly, his gray eyes holding hers prisoner while he slipped his finger into his mouth and licked it clean, tasting her blood.

Clelia couldn’t move. She stood still, unable to speak or blink.

He took a white handkerchief from his coat pocket and wiped it over her mouth before pressing it into her hand.

“He won’t bother you again, but you’d better go home.”

She only nodded. He was much taller than her, so that she had to crane her neck to look up at him. He shifted and then his face was obscured by the shadows with the sun at his back. She remembered wondering if he had forgotten about Thiphaine, who still stood to one side, silently observing, her eyes wide. Clelia looked from Thiphaine to Josselin. When life finally returned to her legs and she started to hurry down the path, he said, “What’s your name, girl?”

She stopped. “Cle … Cle…” Her teeth chattered.

He frowned. “Take a deep breath. You’re in shock.”

She did as he instructed, and found her jaw relax slightly.

“That’s better. Now, tell me again.”

“Clelia.”

His lips twitched. “The witch?”

She flinched. That was what her classmates called her.

He didn’t show any kind of emotion. Only his smile became a little bit more pronounced. “How old are you?”

“Fourteen,” she said through parched lips.

“You’re too young to wander alone in the woods.”

When he said that, his voice became soft and dark again, like when he had spoken to Iwig, and without sparing either of the lovers another glance, Clelia sprinted home and curled into a ball on her bed with his bloody handkerchief in her hand.

  authorinterview

Did you always want to be a writer? If not, what did you want to be?

When I was in second grade I wanted to become an airhostess so that I could travel the world and fly. (I loooove to fly). Somewhere in fifth grade I decided to become an archeologist because I was fascinated with ancient civilizations and their mysteries and legends. In eight grade I was consumed with the stars, and dreamt of becoming an astronaut. So I studied communication … and become a journalist.

For years to come, I searched for my true life purpose, having done many different jobs in various companies, knowing that none of them was the job. Writing has always been central to my heart (I need books and words for my soul) and my professions–my life passion–but, with all the bills that had to be paid, I never considered being a full-time novelist as a career. When I looked back at my passions–my love for traveling so I could visit faraway gothic castles, and for stars because they hold romantic meaning and inspire new worlds with endless possibilities–I realized that it could all be condensed into one, all-consuming passion: romantic literature. I remembered my happiest moments, as a child in the dusty old town library, discovering hidden treasures, inhaling the perfume of ink and paper. I took the plunge, and when I did, everything fell into place. At last, I am a writer.

When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?

I always had the notion in my adult head that I had to publish a book to be able to call myself a writer, when, in hindsight, it is really something that is in your blood. In reality, I considered myself a writer already in second grade, when I dreamed up stories in class and pretended to be a poet.

How long did it take to get your first book published?

It took about six months after completing the manuscript. I made the mistake of blindly targeting publishers without doing research about the kind of books each one published. The result was a pile of rejection letters. Impatient, and deciding that I didn’t want my first story to die in a young grave, I decided to go the self-publishing route. I learned a great deal during the process, which helped me to understand the market better, leading to a successful submission and landing a contract the second time around, which took only three months.

Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?

Besides writing full-time, I am also a mother to two young, beautiful children and a housewife, which requires the constant juggling of chores and priorities. My deadlines are tight–producing a novel every quarter–so I am often writing a new book while editing a different one and marketing another. Time management becomes crucial in ensuring a healthy balance between work and family life.

What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?

My newest book is Aeromancist, Book 2 of the Seven Forbidden Arts series, which is due for release in July. I’ll sum it up as: His lust condemned her to death. Now, he’ll do everything in his power to save her.

Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?

I write romance novels for Satin Romance, an imprint of Mélange Books (an American publisher), and literary short stories for Solstice Publishing and Severest Inks (a British publisher).

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?

It takes me three months from start to end, to where I am able to deliver a polished 100 000-word manuscript. It takes roughly four drafts before I deliver the final product.

What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?

I am releasing three more erotic romance books in the Seven Forbidden Arts series this year, as well as one novella. Also scheduled for publication in 2015 are three short stories in the literary and romance genres. Over the next two years (2016 and 2017) I will be completing the Seven Forbidden Arts series, in which there are eight books in total.

What genre would you place your books into?

My books vary from sensual to erotic romance. Most of them have either futuristic or paranormal elements, but the main focus is always on the romance and the development of the relationship between the protagonists. I’m also a big gothic fan, so my books are full of real-life castles, mysterious settings, eerie landscapes and dark, alpha male heroes who obsess about their women.

What made you decide to write that genre of book?

I believe that you have to write what makes you tick. Whenever I tackle a new romance, my heart starts beating faster. I tend to listen to my body when I write. When endorphins flood my brain, causing those sensations you feel when you fall in love, I know I am writing what I am supposed to be writing, what I write best. If it feels like there is a heavy stone in my stomach, I know it is better to move on to a different idea. In the end, I write what I enjoy to read.

Do you have a favorite character from your books? And why are they your favorite?

I love Josselin in Pyromancist for his irresistible French looks and accent, his dark sexuality and his pure heart. I adore Lann in Aeromancist for his latent strength, his seductive Russian manners and for his admiration of the beauty of the female soul and body. And then there is Sean, a Scottish rogue, but that is only in Book 4.

How long have you been writing?, and who or what inspired you to write?

I have been writing for as long as I can remember. I always had a notebook in which I jotted down stories and poems. I loved writing essays in high school. My inspiration comes from an inborn passion. The spark of excitement I feel around books becomes a flame when I walk into a library and smell the ink and the leather covers. Reading always inspires me to write. Whenever I finish a good book, I want to jump in and start creating a new story.

Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?

I start at 9am every day and finish at 6pm, whether I’m inspired, or not (with the exception of the days when we have school activities in the afternoons). I sit down at my desk and do not allow anything to distract me from my task. I divide my daily time between marketing, writing and editing, ensuring that I do my writing during my creative peak, which is in the morning. Once a week I reward myself with a morning excursion (some me time) to recharge my creative energy, to take a break from my characters, and to touch base with the real world. Weekends are dedicated to my family. I have to write in silence. I find music too distracting. And I prefer to be at my desk, in my study, where interruptions are minimized.

Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?

I read and appreciate every, single review.

Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?

I choose the title after I have finished the book. More often than not, the title reveals itself while I am writing the story.

How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?

Places are a big source of inspiration for me. I like to travel, and always keep a travel log so that I can remember all the details of interesting, mysterious or unusual places to use as backdrops in books. For names I sometimes use baby name books, or I choose a name for its meaning to fit the personality of the character. For example, in my futuristic erotic romance novel, Between Fire & Ice, I named the hero Ciro, or Cy for short, which means sun, because he is from the Atacama Desert and possesses all the fierce characteristics of a fire element personality, while Elena, the heroine, was named after the moon. She is from the Patagonian glacier lands. Hence the title, also (fire and ice).

For Pyromancist (or firestarter) I used a different technique. When I visited Larmor-Baden and Vannes in Brittany, France, I carried a notebook with me and jotted down all the captivating names that I saw on office plaques in the city streets. I took note of attorneys, doctors, financial advisors and other services providers, as well as shop names. This is where I got Erwan, Iwig, Lann, Dréan, and various other names that I used in the Seven Forbidden Arts series from. Josselin (or Joss for short), the Pyromancist male protagonist, was named after the village of Josselin. In real life the village was named after the Josselin Castle, which in turn was named after a powerful line of French royal heirs.

I have also asked my readers to name my characters in the past. This is how Emilio in the futuristic erotic romance, The Astronomer, was named, as well as Zenna in the paranormal erotic romance, The Winemaker. I give a description of each character’s physical and personality traits and ask the readers to suggest names, which I then put up for voting. The name with the most votes is used. To thank the contributor of the winning name, I have also named one of the characters in the same book after that reader.

Are character names and place names decided after their creation? Or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?

Place names I always know beforehand, because it is important for me to know where the story is going to play off, and this I can’t change easily once I am into the story. I like to work with existing locations, even in my futuristic books. Although I do plenty of research and I am pretty sure what my characters are going to be called before I start to write the story, it has happened that I decided to change a name halfway through a book, mostly because the name either didn’t work with the character (it would keep on jumping off the page and scream at me), or if I realized that the name has been used in another story.

Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?

I do an in-depth psychological evaluation of each character beforehand, so that I know them inside out before I start to write the story. Their characteristics and personality traits determine how they speak, what they wear, what they eat, who their friends are, how they behave in stressful situations and what occupations they choose. It is therefore compulsory for me to have this outlined before I start to tell the story.

Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")

The central theme of my self-published literary romance novel, Between Yesterday & Tomorrow, is living in the present moment. Since I am fascinated by opposites–anything yin-yang, black-white, night-day, sun-moon–and how they compliment each other, I often use opposites to demonstrate a message of balance. To me, the secret of happy and healthy living is in balance, and I guess that is why it often pops up in my stories. In Second Best, a literary romance, the message goes deeper. This is the story about a juvenile criminal and a war journalist who help heal each other’s emotional scars after living through turbulent times in South Africa. The message is to never settle for second best in life. In the wine romance, The Winemaker, the Chilean wine cultivars are used as a personification of the personalities of the characters. The enigmatic and world-famous winemaker, Etán, compares Zenna for example to a Merlot, which is the pinnacle of his creations, the best he has ever made. His brother is a cheeky Bordeaux blend. And the descriptions get pretty hot. J The analogy between the wine and the woman Etán loves is sensual and worked really well. I didn’t have any message or morals in mind when I wrote the Seven Forbidden Arts series. This I wrote with the pure purpose of entertaining.

Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?

I love my Kindle because it is so convenient to travel with, and because I can buy a book with the click of a button and have it instantaneously available. Living in Chile, where I don’t have access to English books or stores, this is a definite plus. But smelling and touching a paperback will always be like meeting an old lover over who I am eternally sentimental.

What is your favorite book and Why? Have you read it more than once?

I love the classic Frankenstein by Mary Shelley for its firecracker plot where each action has a string of detonating consequences, and for the deep emotional content and deliciously gothic elements of the story. In present day literature, Lora Leigh’s breed novels, Lion’s Heat and Coyote’s Mate, are my favorites. Ms. Leigh did an excellent job of the characterization and creating both suspense and sexual tension in these books. I have read these stories a couple of times already, and am sure I will read them again in future. They never fail to enchant me.

Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?

I am almost always disappointed in a movie if I have first read the book, maybe because my imagination has already made up the graphic content and therefore my expectations are not met, and because the movie cannot portray the depth of detail of a book. The exception for me is Maleficent (with Angelina Jolie, directed by Robert Stromberg). I love fairy tales, especially Sleeping Beauty, and this movie exceeded my expectations by far. The acting, setting, script, costumes, special effects and message were all magnificent. One disappointment that comes to mind is the 2011 film of Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, directed by David Fincher. I expected more, but then again, the book was complex and jam-packed with information that cannot be relayed in a 158-minute screening.

Your favorite food is?

Chocolate and coffee, hands down.

Your favorite singer/group is?

Def Leppard. I often listened to their song Love Bites (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0T1IVyXBGjM) early in the morning to get me into the right mood before sitting down at my desk to write Pyromancist. I also have a deep appreciation for Robbie Williams’ song lyrics.

Your favorite color is?

Lilac

Your favorite Author is?

In the genre that I write, Lora Leigh and Anna Zaires.

 

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Charmaine Pauls was born in Bloemfontein, South Africa. She obtained a degree in Communication at the University of Potchestroom, and followed a diverse career path in journalism, public relations, advertising, communications, photography, graphic design, and brand marketing. Her writing has always been an integral part of her professions.

After relocating to France with her French husband, she fulfilled her passion to write creatively full-time. Charmaine has published six novels since 2011, as well as several short stories and articles.

When she is not writing, she likes to travel, read, and rescue cats. Charmaine currently lives in Chile with her husband and children. Their household is a linguistic mélange of Afrikaans, English, French and Spanish.

Read more about Charmaine’s romance novels and psychological short stories

www.charmainepauls.com

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Book Blast, Giveaway & Interview: Witch’s Moonstone Locket by @MarshaAMoore

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clip_image002Witch’s Moonstone Locket

A Coon Hollow Coven Tale

Book One

Marsha A. Moore

Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance

Date of Publication: March 24, 2015

ASIN: B00V2DG0HG

Number of pages: 315

Word Count: 94,000

Book Description:

Twenty-three-year-old Jancie Sadler was out of the room when her mother died, and her heart still longs for their lost goodbye. Aching to ease her sorrow, Aunt Starla gives Jancie a diary that changes her entire life. In entries from the 1930s, her great grandmother revealed how she coped with her own painful loss by seeking out a witch from nearby Coon Hollow Coven. The witch wore the griever’s moonstone locket, which allowed whoever could unlock its enchantment to talk with the dead.

Determined to find that locket, Jancie goes to the coven’s annual carnival held in her small southern Indiana town of Bentbone. This opposes her father’s strict rule: stay away from witches. But she’s an adult now and can make her own decisions. She meets Rowe McCoy, the kind and handsome witch who wears the moonstone. He agrees to let her try to open the locket, but they’re opposed by High Priestess Adara and her jealous desire to possess him.

Desperate for closure with her mother, Jancie persists and cannot turn away from a perilous path filled with magic, romance, and danger.

Available at Amazon

excerpt

Warm rain mixed with Jancie’s tears, and she rose to stand beside her mother’s grave. Not ready to let go, she bent at the waist and her fingers followed the arc of her mother’s name—Faye Sadler—in the headstone. She knew the unyielding shape well. The word goodbye stuck in her throat. She’d said it aloud many times since her mother died almost a year ago, only to have the cemetery’s vast silence swallow her farewells. Rain beaded on the polished granite. Her hand, bearing her mother’s silver ring, slid down the stone and fell to her side.

If only she could’ve said goodbye to her mother before. After years of caring for her mom while she suffered with cancer, Jancie had missed the final parting moment while getting a quick bite of dinner. The pain still cut like a knife in her gut.

On foot, she retraced the too-familiar path toward her work at the Federal Bank. Although she’d landed a job as manager at the largest of the three banks in the small town of Bentbone, the position was a dead end. Within the first six months, she’d mastered all the necessary skills. Now, after a year, only the paycheck kept her there.

Jancie turned onto Maple Street. As usual, wind swept up the corridor, between old shade trees protecting houses, and met her at the top of the tall hill. September rain pelted her face and battled the Indian summer noontime temperatures. She zipped the rain parka to keep her dress dry, pulled on the strings of the hood, and corralled strands of ginger-colored hair that whipped into her eyes. Once able to see, she gazed farther into the valley, where the view spanned almost a mile out to the edge of town. Usually, farmers moved tractors across the road or boys raced skateboards and bikes down Maple Street’s long slope.

Today, on the deserted acreage just east of Bentbone, people moving in and out through a gate of the tall wooden fence breathed life into the rundown carnival. Surprised, Jancie crossed the street for a better view. She’d lost track of time since Mom passed. The coming Labor Day weekend in Bentbone meant the valley coven’s yearly carnival. She and her close group of girlfriends always looked forward to the cute guys, fair food, and amazing magical rides and decorations…even if her father didn’t approve of witches or magic. The residents of the sleepy town awoke to welcome a host of tourists wanting to see the spectacle created by the witches of Coon Hollow Coven.

Somehow, Jancie had forgotten the big event this year. Last year, she didn’t go since Mom was so sick and couldn’t be left. Jancie sighed and turned onto the main street toward the bank. She’d lost so much since her mother passed. Really, since the diagnosis of cancer.

At that time, four years ago, Jancie withdrew as a sophomore from Hanover College, a select, private school in southern Indiana near the Kentucky border—too far away. Instead, she returned to stay with her mother and commuted to Indiana University. Balancing hours with the home health care nurse, Jancie had few choices of career paths. Not that it mattered, since her remarried father expected her to find a job in Bentbone and continue taking care of her mother. Despite the sacrifices, Jancie loved her mother, who’d always managed money for a few special things for Jancie—a new bike, birthday parties, prom dresses—even though their income was tight. Mom had paid for her tuition and listened to every new and exciting college experience.

Jancie smiled at the memory of Mom’s twinkling brown eyes, that mirrored her own, when she asked about what happened during the day’s classes: if Jancie liked the professor; if she’d made new friends.

When she rounded the last corner, her thoughts returned to the work day. At the bleak, limestone bank building, reality hit. Jancie pulled against the heavy glass door, and a gust swept her inside. She peeled off the drenched jacket and hung it on the coat rack of her small, plain office. At her desk again, she took her position.

Through the afternoon’s doldrums, punctuated by only a handful of customers, her mind wandered to the carnival. She’d gone dozens of times before and loved it. But since Mom passed, nothing seemed fun anymore, like she couldn’t connect with herself and had forgotten how to have a good time. She organized a stack of notes, anything to put the concern out of her mind.

***

After work, Jancie drove her old blue Camry the five miles to the other end of town where she lived in her mother’s white frame house, the home where she grew up, now hers. Glad to own her own place, unlike her friends who rented, she’d made a few easy changes. In the living room, a new brown leather couch with a matching chair and ottoman. She replaced the bedroom furniture with a new oak suite for herself in what used to be her mother’s room. With pay saved from the bank, Jancie could remodel or build on, but she didn’t know what she wanted yet. Her great aunt Starla had told her to just wait and hold onto her money; she’d know soon enough.

Pouring rain soaked the hem of her dress as she darted between the garage shed and back stoop of the small ranch house.

Glad she’d chosen to get her run in this morning before work, she changed into cozy sweats, pulled the long part of her tapered hair into a ponytail, and headed for the kitchen.

Her phone alerted her of a text, and she read the message from her friend Rachelle, always the social director of their group: R we going to the carnival?

Jancie typed a response. I guess. R Lizbeth and Willow going?

Yep whole gang. What day?

Don’t know yet. Get back to u. Jancie worried she’d spoil their fun. Even though they’d all been her best friends since high school and would understand her moodiness, she didn’t want to ruin one of the best times of the year for them. Since Mom passed, they’d taken her out to movies and shopping in Bloomington, but this was different. Could it ever match up to the fun of all the times before? “I don’t know if I’m up to that,” she said into open door of the old Kenmore refrigerator while rummaging for leftovers of fried chicken and corn.

The meal satisfied and made her thankful she’d learned how to cook during those years with Mom. Not enough dishes to bother with the dishwasher, one of the modern upgrades to the original kitchen, Jancie washed the dishes by hand and then called Starla. When she answered, Jancie asked, “Can I come over tonight? There’s something I’m needing your opinion on.”

“Why sure, Jancie. C’mon over,” the eighty-five-year-old replied with her usual warm drawl. “Are you wantin’ dinner? I made me some soup beans with a big hambone just butchered from Bob’s hog. My neighbor Ellie came over and had some. She said they were the best she’s eaten.”

Jancie glanced at the soggy rain parka and opted for an umbrella instead. “No, I just ate. Be right over.” Keys and purse in hand, she hung up and darted for the shed.

Five minutes later, she turned onto the drive of the eldercare apartments and parked under the steel awning where Starla gave her a whole arm wave from her picture window. Jancie made her way to number twelve on the first floor.

The door opened, and Starla engulfed Jancie in a bear hug, pulling her into the pillow of a large, sagging bosom. Starla smelled of her signature scent—rosewater and liniment.

Jancie had loved her great aunt’s hugs as long as she could remember. Stress and worry melted away, and she hugged back. Her arm grazed Starla’s white curls along the collar of her blue knit top embroidered with white stars—her great aunt’s favorite emblem.

“It’s so good to see you. Come sit a spell, while I get us some iced tea.” Starla pulled away and gestured to the microsuede couch decorated with three crocheted afghans in a rainbow of colors. “I thought we were done with this hot weather, but not quite yet. That rain today’s been a gully washer but didn’t cool things off much.” The large-boned woman scuffed her pink-house-slippered feet toward the kitchen. “Would you rather have pound cake from the IGA or homemade cornbread?”

Jancie laughed and followed her into the kitchen. She wouldn’t get through the visit without eating. “You’re just fishin’ for a compliment. You know your homemade cornbread is better.”

Starla arranged plates with thick slices of warm cornbread and big pats of butter on top, while Jancie transferred the refreshments to the aluminum dinette table.

“With your hair pulled back like that, you’re a dead ringer for your Ma. So pretty with that same sweetheart-shaped face.” Starla folded herself onto a chair beside Jancie. “You look to be getting on well…considering what all you’ve been through.”

“I’m doing okay,” Jancie said through a mouthful of the moist cornbread. She washed it down with a swallow of brisk tea that tasted fresh-brewed. “But sometimes, lots of times, I feel lost, like I can’t move on.” She ran a hand across her forehead. “I didn’t get to say goodbye. I spent time with her through all those years, and it shouldn’t matter, but it does every time I visit her grave and most every night in my dreams.”

“Oh, honey. I know it hurts.” Starla smoothed Jancie’s ponytail down the middle of her back and spoke with a voice so slow and warm, it felt like a handmade quilt wrapping around her. “You spent all that time and gave so much. Just like when I cared for my husband some twenty years back. I know. I never got the chance to tell Harry goodbye either. Time will heal all hurts.”

Jancie looked down at the marbleized tabletop to hide her teary eyes. “I don’t think I’m ever going to heal, Aunt Starla. I don’t know if I can ever move on.”

“There is one thing you can try. I’d have done it, if I’d have known before decades softened my aching heart. Way back, I was desperate like you.”

Jancie looked into Starla’s blue-gray eyes, set deep inside wrinkled lids.

Her aunt leaned closer. “Not many know about this,” she whispered as if someone outside the apartment door might hear. “There’s an old story about how a member of the Coon Hollow Coven, one who’s recently lost a loved one, is made the teller of the moonstone tale.”

Jancie rolled her eyes. “That’s just a silly story, one of lots that Mom and Dad told to scare me when I was little, so I’d stay away from the coven. When the moonstone locket opens at the end of the tale, you’ll get your wish but also be cursed.”

“Oh no.” Starla shook her head and pushed away from the table. “Let me get Aunt Maggie’s old diary. I got this in a box of old family things when Cousin Dorothy passed. ” She lumbered to her spare bedroom and returned with a worn, black-leather volume only a little larger than her wide palm. Once seated, she thumbed through the yellowed pages. “Here.” She pointed a finger and placed the book between them.

  authorinterview

Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?

I’ve followed a circuitous path to end up as a fiction writer. I graduated with a degree in Biology, minoring in English. I wanted to pursue Literature and Fine Art, but my parents encouraged me to study Biology, so I might eventually find a reliable job. That was fine, since I liked that subject also. I wrote essays as a fun break from my full load of Science. Yes, weird that I thought writing essays was fun…still do! Then, I headed into grad school studying Dentistry. Four years later, I decided, although I was excelling, it just wasn’t my calling. I changed gears and taught high school Biology for seventeen years, getting my Masters in Secondary Education.

 

Along the way, I picked up a hobby of writing music reviews for record companies. During that time, I was inspired by some of those experiences and tinkered with fiction. Initially, I wrote fiction based on the world of rock music. Through a lucky happenstance, a man who worked for a major book publishing house read my first attempts at fiction, which were posted on a music forum. He repeatedly encouraged me to submit my creative writing to publishers. Over time, I came to believe him and did. After that, a new world opened up, and it’s been a wonderful time!

 

When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?

With the publication of my first book five years ago.

Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?

I’m a certified yoga teacher, and I teach trauma sensitive yoga for veterans as well as restorative yoga.

What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?

Witch’s Moonstone Locket: A Coon Hollow Coven Tale

Jancie Sadler longs to say goodbye to her deceased mother. Upon learning a local witch may help her talk with the dead, Jancie cannot turn away.

Who is your publisher? Or do you self-publish?

Currently, I self-publish but have had two previous books released with a traditional publisher.

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?

Five to six months is my average time to have a clean draft ready to begin the editing process.

What can we expect from you in the future?  ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?

I’m writing the second book in the Coon Hollow Coven Tales series, titled Witch’s Cursed Cabin. This story is about a young woman who moves from another witch coven to the one in Coon Hollow. Her goal is to leave her sheltered life behind and have new experiences and meet new people, but she finds herself faced with much more than she expected.

What genre would you place your books into?

I consider myself a fantasy romance writer. My books range from high fantasy, which are completely set in a fictitious world, to low fantasy like the paranormal romance series, Coon Hollow Coven Tales, I'm enjoying writing now. I intend the series to include eight books, so I expect to enjoy PNR for a nice, long while.

What made you decide to write that genre of book?

I loved fairy tales and fantasy as early as I can remember. As a child, a bed-time story that sticks with me is a series of verbal tales my father and I made up over years, adding new adventures—called The Land of Wickee Wackee. I loved creating new stories in that world!

 

Do you have a favorite character from your books? And why are they your favorite?

I really enjoyed creating the antagonist, Adara, for Witch's Moonstone Locket. She jumped out at me with her own set of unique problems that drive her peculiar ways of dealing with people. Following in her father’s and then her mother’s footsteps, Adara serves Coon Hollow’s coven as High Priestess. I have no doubt, she’d prefer me to say that she rules the coven rather than serving it. Her family has maintained a ruthless hold on the position for decades. Adara loves power. She craves it. Being named as high priestess fulfills her dreams…almost.

The one thing more important to Adara than power is love, which is something that evades her. Her mother, Grizela Tabard, was a hard-hearted woman who chided Adara for not performing better, not measuring up to her two sisters. After those sisters died young, before Grizela herself passed, the woman still failed to recognize Adara. After Grizela's death, she often haunted Adara in spirit form. All this makes Adara a complex character who has a lot on her plate.

Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?

I struggle with titles, jostling keywords around until I end up with something that sounds good and will help readers know what the book is about. I create titles during the planning stages before I write a book.

How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?

During the planning stage of a book, I create a character name bank that seems to correspond with my general expectations.

Are character names and place names decided after their creation? Or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?

I usually select character names from my book's name bank, but sometimes a character is so unique that I have to go on a search for the perfect name. I select a name almost immediately after creating a character unless he/she has a very minor role.

Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?

All major characters' traits are determined before writing, often in detail with character dossiers. Minor characters just 'appear' during the writing process. It's fun for me to see how those secondary characters evolve and highlight the major players.

Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")

The theme, compassion leads to happiness, seems to be a message I often include in my books.

Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?

I prefer to read fiction in eBook, but my reference books must be paperback or hardback. I thumb back and forth in those, and doing that with an eReader makes me nuts.

What is your favorite book and Why? 

There are so many. I love magical realism books like The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen and Practical Magic and The Green Witch by Alice Hoffman are delicately woven with the most sparkling magic. Other books that captivate me are Natasha Mostert’s Season of the Witch and Erin Morgenstern’s Night Circus. In both of those, magic caused mental effects for both the giver and receiver. I enjoy the complexity of that theme and often employ it in my writing.

Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favorite/worst book to movie transfer?

Generally, I don't like how books transfer from movies. However, I do like the Outlander mini-series and how it is faithful to the essence of the original book.

 

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  abouttheauthor

clip_image004

Marsha A. Moore loves to write fantasy and paranormal romance. Much of her life feeds the creative flow she uses to weave highly imaginative tales.

The magic of art and nature often spark life into her writing, as well as watercolor painting and drawing. She’s been a yoga enthusiast for over a decade and is a registered yoga teacher. After a move from Toledo to Tampa in 2008, she’s happily transformed into a Floridian, in love with the outdoors. Marsha is crazy about cycling. She lives with her husband on a large saltwater lagoon, where taking her kayak out for an hour or more is a real treat. She never has enough days spent at the beach, usually scribbling away at stories with toes wiggling in the sand.

Every day at the beach is magical!

Website: http://MarshaAMoore.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/marshaamooreauthorpage

Twitter: http://twitter.com/MarshaAMoore

Google +: http://google.com/+MarshaAMoore

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/marshaamoore/

Amazon author page: amazon.com/author/marshaamoore

Goodreads author page http://www.goodreads.com/marshaamoore

Hot New Release & Giveaway!! Archangel’s Desire by @karenswart1

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Archangel’s Desire - Archangels’ Series # 1
by Karen Swart

Genre: Paranormal Romance - Audience: 18 + - Formats: E-book and Paperback - Publisher: Karen Swart - Cover By: Janine Fourie - Editor: Jasmin Petricola (Blue Butterfly Editing) - Published Date: April 30, 2015
 
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Raven Black is no martyr, but she has a secret she deems worth protecting. Placed into the care of Zadkiel, the Archangel of Mercy, Raven Black tries with all her might and main to hide her deadly secret. It’s difficult to know who to trust or who to confide in, but Raven knows she’s unwilling to be exploited to get the Archangels’ greatest enemy. She seals her lips, refusing to speak and enduring the ensuing torture in silence.

After centuries of nothing but duty, Zadkiel is tormented by the hellhound Raven. The closer he gets to her, the more he discovers about this lethal beauty. With each passing moment an uncontrollable desire is awakened, and with it an ancient evil is provoked.

When he discovers her secret, Zadkiel must choose between all of mankind and the woman he has come to love. Can he save her in time, or will his failure bring forth the end of days?

He would awaken a desire that would burn through hell.
 
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excerpt
As Raven faded away, I turn to look at Chax. Although Chax was our leader, his short temper always seemed to doom a situation. His green eyes pierced mine as he regained his footing and pulled out his sword.
“There are more ways to deal with something than just force, Chax.” I smirked at him.
“Agreed, but not in Raven’s case.” Chax brought his sword in front of him, determined to get the weapon he needed to bring down Lucifer.
“She is still a fallen, and in my care. I will not let her be harmed in any way.” I stepped a little to the left, bringing my body to a perfect counter position.
“So, you choose her side rather than our cause?” Chax accused me.
“Please, I am not one of your little fallen apprentices. I chose the right path, the one without hurting an innocent girl.” I steadied the weight of my body on the balls of my feet, and secured my position.
“I migh-“ Chax was cut off by something crashing through my office wall.
“Where is she? Where is that hellhound?” an even more intoxicated Camael yelled while trying to stay upright.
“You have got to be kidding me!” At the sound of Chax’s pained words, my eyes flew in his direction, and I lifted my eyebrows at his statement.
He blushed a little. “Too much time with my mate,” he replied.
“I see,” I replied and caught Camael before his face ended up in my chair.
“What the hell are you doing, Camael?!” Chax replaced his sword and grabbed Camael on the other side.
“That hellhound needs a lesson in respect.” Camael’s words slurred with his heavy tongue.
“He needs to be healed, Chax. Is there no one who can help?” I was worried for my old friend; he was not doing well at all.
“No, not even the visits in heaven seem to be helping, although I might have an idea we can test.” Chax grabbed Camael on the shoulder and forced him to sit down. His head hung backwards as his dark eyes looked up and tried to focus on us.
“If it might work, we need to try it. He is unable to fulfill his duties in this state.” A bitter taste was left in my mouth. I didn’t like what I was seeing at all.
“What about Raven?” Chax asked.
“I will find her, and I will let her take me to him. The moment I have him in sight, I will notify all of you.” My eyes drifted to Chax.
“And you think that you will be able to persuade her to help us trap him?” Chax frowned.
“Yes, but she will not know that she is doing it. I will steer her the way we need her to go.” Chax nodded and grabbed hold of Camael.
“Do that then, but if you fail, it will be my way, Zadkiel.” He shifted out, taking Camael with him.
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about the author
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I am a complete book addict, and really proud of it. My entire world is made of books. From reading to writing to blogging to helping other authors. A day without my world of books would be impossible. I am a mother of three, two boys and a little princess. Happily married for 8 years with my high school sweetheart. I live in South Africa, just on the rims of the Kalahari Desert in a small town with one shop and friendly faces.
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