Friday, March 23, 2018
Thursday, March 22, 2018
|Where we pass through a small town on our bike route.|
Know Your Characters
We Write Our Own Story
When You Read, Do You “Hear” Your Characters Tone of Voice?
by revealing specifics about him she couldn’t have otherwise known.
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
And just to show that I have actually been writing at least a bit, how about an excerpt?
This is from "The Deepest Breath of Song", a story about a shy young tuba player who discovers there's a lot more to life in his small coastal town than he'd ever imagined when he must help the town's Warder find out who's been hunting the herd of hippocampi migrating through the local oceans.
When Oscar finds the culprit, well... let's just say it doesn't go well. ;D
Ashosha. Her name was the very crash of the tide against the sands. Oscar caught glimpse after glimpse of the ocean through her eyes, as she, proud huntress and magic-wielder of the merrow, roved through the wide Pacific waters on behalf of her people.
They numbered fewer every year, driven as they were into the last lingering hidden places of the deep, for the oceangoing vessels of his own kind grew harder and harder to elude. So too did the creatures that could feed the merrow dwindle—for all of them were threatened by not only the ships and submarines of humanity, but the pollutants that fouled the currents even when no humans were near. With such challenges before her people she could not afford compassion, not if it kept her from filling the bellies of hungry merrow children—
Without warning, as her finned hand snapped back from him once again, their connection broke. Or the physical one, at least. Oscar clutched his paddle to him, half-convinced it might somehow balance him against the sudden tumultuous whirling in his skull. This single huntress, this female called Ashosha, roared across his thoughts with a power far greater than the entire hippocampi herd.
How she perceived him he dared not imagine. Yet the wave that bore her drew her back from his kayak now, and he could no longer mistake the look in her eyes for anything but reluctance.
The next words she hurled at him, though, rang with resolve as sharp as her spear.
“I give the herd three days. In exchange, human, you will come to the shore each night and play upon this horn you say sounds like them. Make your case for their lives. If I do not like what I hear, your own life will be forfeit.”
It was no bargain; if anything, it was an ultimatum. Accepting it was the height of foolishness. The sheer thought of it crowded Oscar’s brain with twin thoughts that should have amplified his panic past all bearing. One, that hardly anyone in the town would understand, know, or care what happened to him if the huntress Ashosha should kill him. And the other, that his mother would.
He didn’t know how. He didn’t know why. But he did know that it was important that he return safely to his mother, and that he ask Amanda Beck, the quiet owner of a quiet B&B in a quiet little town, knew of the world Marikat had shown him.
Was his mother a Warder?
Had his father been?
“Promise me you won’t harm Marikat or my mother,” Oscar said. To his surprise, the words sounded steadier than anything he’d ever uttered, for all that his voice had gone quiet and thin. “Or anyone else in the town.”
“The merrow do not come ashore,” Ashosha replied. “None of your people will face our spears if they stay out of our waters.”
Whether he could believe her, Oscar could not possibly guess—but then, the whole night had been filled with impossibilities. Yet something in him, born out of that brief fierce contact with her mind, hinted that perhaps, just perhaps, she was not lying.
And that perhaps, just perhaps, there was compassion within her that he could reach. That made it easy to, at last, put forth his promise.
“I’ll come. I’ll play for you.”
"The Deepest Breath of Song" is just shy of 14,000 words as of this writing, and is indeed shaping up to be one of the longer pieces in the book! I hope y'all like my take on the "magical duel" trope. Not to mention my determination to have a musician in a story who doesn't play a traditionally sexy instrument, for once!
I'm fond of Oscar, too. I've had fun researching what a well-played classical tuba sounds like, just to get an idea of how he should sound on his instrument. And, he is totally a Tolkien nerd and named his tuba The Horn of Helm Hammerhand.
Want to know more? Check back with me! I'll be doing Camp Nanowrimo again next month, and hopefully, I'll be able to finish Oscar's story.
Meanwhile, I'd love to hear about your favorite story with a musician protagonist who plays an unusual instrument. Talk to me in the comments!
Angela writes the Free Court of Seattle series as Angela Korra'ti, and the Rebels of Adalonia series as Angela Highland. Either way, come find out about all her books over at angelahighland.com, or say hi to her on Facebook or Twitter.
Tuesday, March 20, 2018
Thinking of St Pat's got me thinking about other lucky superstitions. There are some weird ones out there - weirder than kissing the Blarney Stone, for sure. (Good luck superstitions from Mental Floss).
Even weirder is the fact that lucky superstitions can actually work! Yep, cross your fingers for luck as you read this article on a study concerning the nature of luck, belief and performance from Live Science.
Belief is a powerful force. I'd argue, that at its heart, belief is a story we tell ourselves. I've mentioned before how important I think stories are in making sense of our lives and the world around us, but stories can also change us. The story we tell ourselves of who we are becomes the reality we live. We live up or down to our own expectations.
Wow! Look at me getting all philosophical. Back to superstitions! I happily make up fairy tales (like with The Troll Bridge), but I've never thought to make up a superstition. I'm going to change that. I'm not sure which book I'll put it in, but I'm thinking of giving it to my young doctor heroine of Amaranthine Kiss. Superstitions can be how we cope with stress, and the life of a resident is definitely stressful! (Amaranthine Kiss is part of my Old School paranormal romance series). Now, I have to think of a superstition that a young Boston woman might believe...
Do you have any weird superstitions in your life? I've happily owned (or been owned by) a black cat, stepped on cracks on the sidewalk, and I never worry when I spill salt. But I do have a superstition that when I hang out the laundry in winter, it'll rain :)
Oops, they're all bad luck superstitions! Um, good luck ones ... you know what? I'm sitting here stunned because I don't think I have any lucky superstitions, not a charm, a habit, or even lucky underwear! LOL I'll have to adopt a new superstition. Any suggestions?
Monday, March 19, 2018
Deities, Book 1
Contemporary Fantasy/Apocalyptic Romance
Word Count: 34.8K
$2.99 e / $9.99 p / $14.95 a
Narrated by Matyas Job Gombos
Length: 4 hrs, 33 min
Released after eons of being imprisoned and tortured, Aeron and his three brothers are ordered by the remaining old gods to bring the Apocalypse upon the world. Humanity has failed them too many times, and the Reckoning is overdue.
As the deity of the air and sky, it's Aeron's duty to bring about massive storms to wipe out civilization. Tornadoes, hurricanes, lightning - all are at his bidding, and Aeron is more than willing to do whatever he is requested to do. He will mete out the worst he can conjure, as long as it means he'll no longer be bound within the hot, dark confines deep within the bowels of the Earth.
Ceris Shahan is terrified of flying. But when the president of the company demands she be at the summit conference clear across the continent the next day, she has no choice but to take the next plane out. If her phobia wasn't debilitating enough, they run into turbulence that doesn't end. Tossed about, bruised and injured amid the ugly black clouds that continue to engulf them, she and the other passengers soon realize they will not survive.
When Ceris spots a figure outside the window, a man who appears to be standing amid the thunderheads and is surrounded by an aura of light, she starts to doubt her own sanity. Yet, when the man turns to find her staring at him, the look of stunned disbelief on his face is undeniable.
She shouldn't be able to see him, but she can. Realizing what this could mean, Aeron decides to risk everything, even his freedom, to rescue and protect the woman from the annihilation of all mankind.
Warning! Contains scenes of mass destruction, two apples, the plane ride from hell, stainless steel, extreme arrogance, an odd utility tool, and two people hoping for a future, any kind of future, as long as they can share it together.
Iron by PG Forte, set in Ireland. She talks about the influence of her Irish grandparents and shares an excerpt.
Saturday, March 17, 2018
This book is very special to me since the hero, Gavin, is a blacksmith--as was my grandfather, who was born in Ireland. Obviously, this book has nothing at all to do with my grandparents, both of whom would no doubt be appalled by most of what I write. lol! But all the same, I swear I could hear my grandmother's voice in my head as I wrote it. The Irish cadence to the dialogue? That's all her.
Nineteenth century Ireland. Blacksmith Gavin O'Malley is a bitter man, with a heart as hard as the iron he forges. He wants his life back--the one that was stolen from him the day his wife died in childbirth--taking their firstborn son with her.
When Aislinn Deirbhile, an immortal, shape-shifting fae, arrives on his doorstep, he knows he's in luck. For Aislinn can give Gavin everything he's been missing: A devoted-seeming wife in the image of his beloved Mairead, and children who are sure to outlive their father. Now, all he has to do is find a way to keep her--without losing his immortal soul in the process.
But Aislinn has an agenda of her own. On the run from a vengeful fae lord who's vowed to either make her his or end her existence, she knows the iron that allows Gavin to take her captive will also keep her pursuers at bay. In order to put herself permanently beyond her enemy's reach, however, Aislinn will need something more. She'll need to win Gavin's heart and convince him to willingly part with a piece of the very soul he's trying to save.
Friday, March 16, 2018
No, Mom. I’m an author.
Paranormal/Urban Fantasy Romance
Word Count: 60.9K
$0.99 e / $9.99 p / $19.95 a
If you were murdered by a stranger, wouldn’t you want the chance to be able to come back and find out who killed you? And why?
J was born blind, but she could "see" things. Her gift has always helped the police find such things as missing persons, serial killers... a ghost or two.
Detective Kiel Stark has worked homicide for eight years, but he has never met this mysterious Seer his fellow officers claim could almost perform miracles. Not until a gruesome triple homicide has his superiors calling in the reserved woman to help with the case.
Now Stark is faced with a double threat. Not only is he finding himself dangerously attracted to the enigmatic beauty, but she could very well discover his own carefully guarded secret—a secret that could bring an end to his career, his way of life, and any future he had hoped to have.
Warning! Contains disturbing images, the living dead, revenge gone wrong, drug deals gone bad, and two people facing an impossible love without any chance for a future.
Excerpt and buy links.
Thursday, March 15, 2018
"What I like most about spring is the fresh green smell of new grass in the sun . . . it never smells quite the same any other time of the year. It's the scent of hope and joy and new possibilities." Shawna Reppert, www.shawna-reppert.com
“Getting up at the crack of dawn in the spring has it's advantages. I love to crack the window as the birds wake and hear their excitement for the coming day. Then as the day progresses, there is nothing more refreshing than fully opening the windows and letting in the fresh spring air.” Maureen Bonatch, www.maureenbonatch.com
|Winter wiener dogs can soon go for walks!|
Photo: Linda Mooney
"I always look forward to those first spring flowers. Daffodils, crocus, the blooming wild cherry and redbud trees... All make me so happy. Even if it turns cold or snows again, I know the end is in sight." Joely Sue Burkhart, www.joelysueburkhart.com
Legend, lore, love, and magic. These are the hallmarks of Dani Harper’s transformational tales of faeries, shapeshifters, ghosts, and more, for a mature audience.
A former newspaper editor, Dani’s passion for all things supernatural led her to a second career writing fiction. There isn’t anything she likes better than exploring myths and legends from many cultures, which serve to inspire her sizzling and suspenseful stories.
A longtime resident of the Canadian north and southeastern Alaska, she now lives in rural Washington with her retired mountain-man husband. Together they do battle with runaway garden gnomes, rampant fruit trees, and a roving herd of predatory chickens.
Harper’s first foray into fiction began with a series of successful wolf-shifter novels: CHANGELING MOON (2012 RITA finalist), CHANGELING DREAM, and CHANGELING DAWN. A darker werewolf tale brushing the edges of horror followed: FIRST BITE.
More recently she’s been bringing ancient faery legends into modern-day America with THE GRIM SERIES (STORM WARRIOR, a top ten pick by PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, STORM BOUND, STORM WARNED, and soon-to-be-released STORM CROSSED)
For those who love a ghostly love story: THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT.