Sunday, December 9, 2018

WeWriWa: Meet Max Savoie, the Big Dog from my “By Moonlight” Series

That feeling you get when you know you’re onto something good. When one book isn’t enough to capture the drama, action and powerful relationship that tangles around your every thought. MASKED BY MOONLIGHT . . . yeah, it was like that. I’d never written without a detailed outline, but this story unfolded so fast I was into book four before I could catch my breath. And now I’m lost in these stories all over again as I reread the series (all 14 of them!) to get up to speed for RISE BY MOONLIGHT, to end cap the series. It’s all about Max Savoie, the mysterious shapeshifting mob enforcer and his infatuation with a wrong for every reason female (number one being she’s a New Orleans detective determine to bring down his father-figure boss with him as collateral damage!) Meet Max through the jaded eyes of Det. Charlotte Caissie as she goes to question his employer about a grisly murder in the Quarter.

Cee didn’t spend a lot of time admiring men for their looks, but something about Max Savoie’s face arrested her each time she saw him.

He wasn’t handsome, not even attractive in the traditional sense. He was rugged strength cut into sharp planes and rough angles, confident without being cocky, powerful without aggression, exuding complete control over what he allowed the world to see, which was usually damned little.

The fact that he could seem so forceful behind such a calm, immobile front impressed her and not much did. Max was a man who wasted no unnecessary words or movements, his unblinking stare taking in everything without revealing anything through eyes the color of wet verdigris, beneath lids heavy with guarded distain . . . or amusement. She often got the feeling that he was laughing at her on some private level, which irritated her. 

But the odd way he sensed things not apparent to others made her nervous—sounds, smells, movements, he was alert to them like a mastiff on a short chain. And he missed nothing when it came to her—not the slightest nuance, every tiny alteration, in a way that she’d find alarmingly obsessive if he ever acted on it with more than slightly flirtatious words. Who the hell noticed a new perfume applied modestly to pulse points almost a full day ago? Wondering made those pulse points flutter.

Welcome to my “By Moonlight” world! (Sorry for the outrageous price on these books even the e-versions! The paperbacks are technically out of print and I plan to petition for my rights back soon.) View it from Max’s eyes next week. Until then, here’s another tease . . .

I’m recovering from the office Christmas party and an all day Write In but plan to stop in to chat with everyone after missing last weekend. Happy Weekend fellow Warriors.

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

WeWriWa: Under Your Scars

Sometimes all the things we hide from ourselves and others are the same imperfections that link us to someone else when they’re shared . . . if we can find the courage to take that step.

Kip Terriot, the hero in my recent release PRINCE OF DREAMS, has been bemoaning all the star-crossed reasons Ophelia Brady is wrong for him. Time to hear Phe’s side of things in this week’s excerpt . . .

He didn’t trust her or believe in her, in what she said or how she felt. Apparently, her actions hadn’t voiced it clearly enough. If the fact she’d turned away from her family to aide his wasn’t proof of her intentions, she had no idea how to convince him, leaving her no recourse except walking away . . . if he’d let her after what she’d seen, what she knew. These were desperate, dangerous people - not even people, from what she’d learned in the past 24-hours, but then, she’d started to discover, neither was she. What else could she give to prove that she was all in as far as he was concerned? 

Bottom line, she loved Kip Terriot for reasons that formed an impressive, undeniable list: His goodness, his devotion to family, his compassion for others, his courage and intelligence, his humor, not to mention that tight butt . . . but mostly because of the way he’d accepted her, making her prince the whole damned near close-to-perfect package.

Until now, with hurt and exhaustion pushing an unexpected wedge of uncertainty between them. She could ignore it, or she could confront it. Neither scenario promised a good outcome.

Or she could accept him, the way he’d made her accept herself, for all her flaws.

Can two wrongs fit together to make something very right? They can if those shared scars are seen for what they are, badges of strength and honor and not as weaknesses.

Follow Kip and Ophelia’s dangerous, romantic, sexy and seemingly impossible journey toward accepting what they must about each other and themselves to find happiness in PRINCE OF DREAMS from my “House of Terriot” and “By Moonlight” dark shapeshifter series.

For the next few months, I’ll be sharing excerpts from the books in my “By Moonlight” series while I do a refresher reread to prep for RISE BY MOONLIGHT, the final book in the series. Gotta get all those pesky timeline issues straight through the almost ten years and ten books (14 counting the HoT spin off series). Hope you’ll enjoy taking the journey with me.

While I finish off the leftovers from my Thanksgiving dinner, I’ll be feasting on the tidbits you’re sharing this weekend, fellow Warriors, as we go boldly into December!

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

WeWriWa: A World Apart . . . Alone

We all know what it’s like to be different, to feel different, to squirm in uncomfortable situations not of our making in a foreign environment. That’s where Kip Terriot, my hero in PRINCE OF DREAMS finds himself after last week’s excerpt. What makes that truth harder to accept is knowing that it places an unbreachable barrier between him and the woman he loves.

Ophelia’s concern reduced him, her encouragement rebuilding where he was weak. The only thing that kept him from acting upon the rightness of them being together was the echo of Colin's litany of all that was wrong, because he had no arguments.

They were different, a difference Kip couldn't explain away or skirt around as if it wasn't important. She was a human female, the daughter of the man he was working to destroy and nothing about that added up to them together in any possible scenario.

As the son of their clan's king, he'd questioned who he was all his life, but never had he wondered about what he was until here in this world. Here, he felt unnatural, not only different but unacceptable. He'd been raised to keep a careful distance from humankind, and when close proximity was unavoidable, to follow strict rules - Don't flaunt your strength, don't display your natural abilities, and don't let them see you aren't like them. He'd asked his mother why, if they were so much stronger, they had to be afraid of the delicate human beings. Not to protect themselves, was her puzzling reply, for they had nothing to fear from Uprights, but rather to protect how the weaker kind would seek to use them or eradicate them out of fear and ignorance as vicious, uncontrollable predators instead of embracing them as thinking, caring beings.

As Ophelia Brady would fear him if she saw his true face and form.

What a wretched place to be. One of my favorite songs sums up the future he sees for himself at this point as he struggles to do the right thing for the both of them.

Or is he underestimating her?

I feel his bittersweet uncertainty this week while bundling up in the freezing temperatures, saying goodbye to friends and co-workers I’ve enjoyed while moving on to a new, uncharted future where there are no guarantees. But then how can you reap rewards without first taking the risk?

Happy change of seasons, fellow Warriors! Go forth boldly in pursuit of your dreams.

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

WeWriWa: His Brother’s Keeper

Sorry I missed my last weekly installment from PRINCE OF DREAMS. Frustration and stress from my interim job ground out every last creative spark. Fortunately, it led to great news I’ll share after today’s 8-10 line excerpt which follows hero Kip’s sobering conversation with his older, world-weary brother, Colin about a future with the girl of his dreams . . .

"Why can't it be like that?" Kip argued on behalf of his fragile hopes. 

"Because the rest of the world doesn't want to see us happy after all the things we've done." Hands on his knees, Colin pushed up to his massive height, concluding, "I've got no other answer, for either of us." 

"That sucks." 

"Yes, it does." 

The bitter truth in his brother’s grim words forced Kip to demand, "What does that leave us with?" 

"Duty and honor, battle and blood, and a bonfire to release our souls." Colin sighed his heavy conclusion, "And a battle's about to begin in my back yard so you stay clear, you hear?" 

"What are you into, Col?" Kip asked, heart pounding as he looked beyond his own selfish woes to the dangers of their current situation. 

"Retribution, little brother, and it's going to be a bitch."

Not what a young Romeo wants to hear. Watch for Kip’s reaction next week.

With two weeks off before the start date of my dream job and a three day Write In this weekend, I’m letting the stress roll off to say “Hello again” to book 15 (and the final chapter) of my shapeshifter series. 

I have a lot to be thankful for this month!! How about you, fellow Weekend Warriors?

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

IWSG: The Creative Writers’ Evolution

Our Insecure Writers Support Group theme for November is “How has your creativity in life evolved since you began writing?” So glad you asked!!

I was born thinking outside (and around) the box of “what was” to the “what could be”. Perhaps because I’m a Gemini, creativity is the balance between my worlds of learning and imagination. As a child, I loved to embellish, to expand, to ask “What if?” I drew, I told stories, and eventually as a young teen, I began to write them down, a process that has never stopped evolving.

When I signed my first contracts in the ‘80s and ‘90s, my active role stopped at the acceptance of my manuscript. The publisher did the rest of the packaging and selling, and I was stuck with their interpretation of my work. There weren’t a lot of things an author could do at that point except spend time at signings and money on advertising. Then bookmarks became the big thing. When I designed my first bookmark and won a Romantic Times promotion award for it, a whole new layer of writing involvement opened, expanding hugely when I sold the first three books of my “By Moonlight” shapeshifter series to Pocket Books. When my editor solicited my involvement in the marketing of those books, an unexpectedly exciting level of ‘creative’ writing was born. I got to write the backblurb and teaser copy, plan and approve cover concepts and venture out of my techno-phobic world into posting a New Orleans-set research travelogue on Pocket’s debuting blog (This was big stuff for someone who wrote their first six books long hand and typed them on a Smith Corolla manual!).

My next big step was designing (with the help of my intrepid artist/critique partner pal Patricia Lazarus) my web site. Choosing graphics, making the logo, picking colors and fonts and backdrops and pictures . . . I fell in love with that deeper layer of expression. In college, I backed my English major with Communications and History minors never guessing the role they’d play in my future career. As much as I disliked public appearances, I adored helming behind the scenes promotional efforts (now with the aid of my intrepid virtual assistant, Florence Price!). Venturing into self-pubbing, there were covers to design, blogs to write complete with graphics and video support. I jumped enthusiastically into piecing together book trailers and playlists, banners and newsletters (finally!), each new texture adding an extra creative thrill of enjoyment to the actual butt-in-chair-hands-on-keys effort of writing. I’ve even learned to enjoy giving speeches . . . with lots of visual aids! If I hadn’t become a writer, these fulfilling avenues of expression would probably have remained dormant. But now they’re enough to keep both my creative Twin sides busy and fulfilled!

How about you? I can’t wait to discover your creative secrets, my fellow IWSG pals!

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.The awesome co-hosts for the November 2nd posting of the IWSG will be Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor, Ann V. Friend, JQ Rose, and Elizabeth Seckman!

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Twitter hashtag is #IWSG

Sunday, October 28, 2018

WeWriWa: It’s a (Shapeshifter) Family Affair

No one likes to hear a hard truth, especially when it’s from the one person you think will understand. That’s where we left Kip, our hero from PRINCE OF DREAMS, as he confesses some surprising revelations to his older, wiser and cynical brother, Colin (from PRINCE OF POWER), telling him the truth about his feelings for the female he’s in New Orleans to use and betray . . . but has come to love. 

Alarm jumped through his brother before understanding relaxed him. "She knows your family name, that you're from Nevada, but does she know what you are, that you hunt trails with your nose to the ground and eat what you catch while it's warm? Have you told her what's required of your bond mate?"

"Enough, Colin, that's enough," Kip cried as he exploded off the couch and began to pace. "I don't want to pull her into a world full of violence and pride."

Colin sat silent for a long moment then posed, "You'd live in her world, walking away from your family?" There was no blame in his words, just puzzlement.

"I don't know, Col, I just don't know. There's got to be a middle ground, for both of us, you and me."

That snatched back the cynical smile as he drawled, "Right, and the rest of the ugly world we live in is just going to step back and let us live it."

Here’s where he finds himself . . .

Love this video! Sly & the Family Stone/Earth, Wind & Fire was one of the first concerts I went to with my older sister at my future university’s fieldhouse. Still rockin’ it soulfully!

If you’re looking for some non-caloric treats to celebrate the upcoming holiday, fill your goodie bag (and your eyes!) with my princes from the “House of Terriot”. Sinfully good.

Prince of Honor
Book 1
Prince of Power
Book 2
Prince of Fools
Book 3
Prince of Dreams
Book 4





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Hope this weekend edging up on Halloween finds you in a good place in your writing life, fellow Warriors! Don’t eat too much candy (if there’s such a thing?)!

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

WeWriWa: Knowing is Half the Battle . . . (if you’re a prince with a secret!)

With two sons growing up in the ‘80s/early ‘90s, one of the school day morning rituals was breakfast with GI Joe. Not only did they learn lessons about fair play and honor (and a lot of cartoon action!), the motto from the show taught me something, too. Things seem scary, impossible, overwhelming, undefeatable . . . until you know what you’re dealing with. Knowledge can give you the upper hand when the going gets tough. It helped our buddies Duke, Scarlet and my favorite, Cross Country every morning at 7:00. It’s helped me get over hurdles in my writing career. And it could help the hero in my new release PRINCE OF DREAMS deal with the pull between what he desires and what he’s obligated to do. Knowing can help equal the most difficult playing field, as Kip Terriot is discovering in today’s excerpt as he discusses his seemingly doomed attraction to Ophelia, who is not only his enemy’s daughter, but not his own species!

"I can keep both things separate." 

Colin had the unexpected decency not to laugh out loud. "No, you can't. We are what we are and what we are is not like them. Sure, she's cute and busty and probably laughs at your lame jokes, but she can't give you what you need. She can't be your life mate and give you a family." 

"Why not?" That belligerent demand cancelled all his half-hearted protests over the same issue, but Colin didn't call him on it, instead, continuing in that same quietly measured tone that led down a path to no future Kip wanted for himself. 

"Because you’re a prince in the House of Terriot which is why haven't you told her who you are." 

"She knows."

I’m with Colin, Kip’s cynical older brother. How can Kip believe it could work out? And just WHAT does Phe know about their secretive family? Knowing, in this case, could destroy them! I’ll be continuing this conversation into next month.

As Halloween gets closer, my dreamy Prince and I are continuing to tour in a Spooktacular way. One of the fun things it involves is a Facebook event on Wednesday, Oct. 24th. My slot is 8-9 p.m. EST. All sort of goodies and giveaways will ensue throughout the day.

I hope you’ll stop by to visit with me!!

PRINCE OF DREAMS and I are also inviting you to the Hallowpalooza Scavenger Hunt through Oct. 31 where you can meet new authors, find new reads and win some awesome prizes, including a Kindle Fire! Come support me as one of the participating authors and have some non-caloric fun in door-to-door stops.

I spent my Saturday in an online chat with the amazing Joy Seeker, Arwen Lynch who uses the Tarot to help plot your novel’s path and develop your characters' backstory. Her reading helped me define my heroine in PRINCE OF DREAMS (so appropriate since she’s a card reader in New Orleans!)! Take a peek at her book Mapping the Hero’s Journey with Tarot: 33 Days to Finish Your Book. It’s awesome!

Happy Haunting season and Happy Writing, fellow Warriors!

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

WeWriWa: His Father’s Son . . . New Paranormal Release - PRINCE OF DREAMS!

Finding and falling for the perfect woman is hard enough. Throw in the fact that you’re of a different species and your purpose is to destroy everything she loves . . . well, that’s kind of a deal breaker. What’s a hero to do . . .?

She thought he was a bastard and she was right. 

No amount of excuses could erase the truth that he’d used her, hurt her and was going to continue to do both . . . and she let him. She’d accepted his duplicity with an amazing outward calm, not flinging the contents of her coffee cup at him but instead, opening the door of reward. Though she knew exactly what he was doing, still she gave him what he wanted, entry into her household and her father’s world for the price of a Judas kiss. 

He was despicable, his father’s son, and far from proud of that fact. 

The best thing he could do for Ophelia Brady was what she expected-grab the gift-wrapped opportunity and never look her way again - the best thing for both of them. 

In the morning, he’d check out of his hotel room and sign a lease on the trendy renovated apartment he’d found in the Garden District, adding that opportunistic address to his resume before handing it to the snotty Nick DePoussier, and then, as Christopher Fraser, he’d follow in that creep’s footsteps by walking all over a wonderful girl who didn’t deserve it. 

Because he was a Terriot. Nothing came before family. And he had a lot to make up for if he was to ever wear that name with pride again. 

What’s the price of pride? I think he’ll find out it’s more than he can pay.

If you haven’t had a chance to explore PRINCE OF DREAMS, visit the Amazon page for a sneak peek.


Kip . . . Prince in the shapeshifter House of Terriot

He'd said he wasn't a mobster. . . She should have asked if he was a monster.
Who was this too good to be true, always ready in a crisis guy working a menial job for her father? Ophelia knew things. Something was not quite normal about the Kip Terriot hiding behind another name in lace-up dress shoes and a preppy wardrobe – something wild and exciting as all hell. A dangerous something calling to that restless difference in her own soul.

Ophelia . . . daughter of his enemy, girl of his dreams

So sassy, so sweet so perfect . . . and what he had to do would destroy her.

Kip was in New Orleans to save his clan and his kind, not to play white knight for Ophelia Brady with her quirky habits, curvy body and tormented past. His deception would rip the heart from her world, not help heal it. Was his family’s nemesis using his own daughter to make Kip the played instead of the player, pulling him between love and duty to make an impossible choice?

“Emotionally captivating! A brilliant conclusion to a unique series!” – Book Bling

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ 

It’s beginning to smell a lot like pumpkin spice (even my coffee!!). My favorite time of year. I’m carving out time to haunted-up my house to the max this weekend (it helps when the first born is working at a Halloween store!!). We’re off to a good start . . .

Happy Hauntings and Happy Reading, Fellow Warriors!!

Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.