Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Falling into Romance - how one writer found the genre

Posted by: Dani Harper, AUTHOR
One of the most frequent questions I'm asked as an author is How did you start writing romance?

It's not because I have a history with the genre. True confession time here - I never read romance novels! Not when I was young, not when I was a so-called adult. In fact, not at any time during the 20th century did I read a single example of the romance genre.


*collective gasp*

It's true. From the time I could pick up a book by myself, my personal reading time was filled with:

  • science fiction
  • mythology
  • superhero comic books
  • fantasy 
  • horror
  • did I mention science fiction?

Then right around 2001, I was happily browsing through a comic book store and spied a novella by Christine Feehan, titled Dark Dream. "Aha! A vampire story!" I thought to myself, and picked it up.

It was sooooo much more than that, as fans of Feehan's legendary Carpathians well know. I was amazed and fascinated. I'd never read anything where the MONSTER was not only the good guy, but he GOT THE GIRL as well!

Paranormal Romance was more than a new genre for me, it was an entirely new universe...

After devouring all the Feehan books I could find, I branched out to Sherrilyn Kenyon, Kresley Cole, Gena Showalter, Karen Marie Moning, Larissa Ione, Jeaniene Frost, JR Ward and oh-so-many-more. A feast for the imagination with many worlds and realities to choose from! Add to that the chance to see how supernatural characters dealt with their circumstances, how they grew and changed, how they learned to navigate the complexity of relationships, and I was permanently, irrevocably hooked.

It was really no surprise when I eventually began writing PNR myself.

Later I embraced Urban Fantasy with both arms (Kelley Armstrong, Laurell K. Hamilton, Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris, Jim Butcher, Karen Chance, Ilona Andrews...).

My own stories today tend to be a hybrid of both genres (para-fantasy anyone?) But there is always, always, always a relationship to be resolved, a strong romantic thread running through the novels I write. And, of course, an eventual "happily ever after".

So that's my "origin story". How did YOU begin reading (or writing) romance?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

THE GRIM SERIES by Dani Harper

The fae are cunning, powerful and often cruel. The most beautiful among them are often the most deadly. Hidden far beneath the mortal world, the timeless faery realm plays by its own rules—and those rules can change on a whim. Now and again, the unpredictable residents of that mystical land cross the supernatural threshold…

In this enchanting romance series from Dani Harper, the ancient fae come face-to-face with modern-day humans and discover something far more potent than their strongest magic: love.


See ALL Dani's novels on her Amazon Author Page

Monday, July 30, 2018

Here Be News for July 30, 2018

Posted by: Dani Harper, AUTHOR
All the latest 
from the authors at 
Here Be Magic
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In Case You Missed It:

Monday, July 23

"HERE BE NEWS" - All the latest from the authors at Here Be Magic.

Tuesday, July 24
"FLYING HIGH" Author Shawna Reppert tells how her childhood hero helped shape her life.

Wednesday, July 25
"THE BENEFITS OF HAVING A GYM MEMBERSHIP" Author Linda Mooney writes about hitting the gym - and finding more than fitness! 

Thursday, July 26
Are you committing one of the "THE SEVEN READLY SINS"??? Find out in author Jenny Schwartz's latest post.

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

Recent Releases:

Check out these new offerings by Here Be Magic authors!

SPACE DEPUTY by Jenny Schwartz and WRYNTER by Linda Mooney.


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Upcoming:

We had a LOT of fun
writing this together!
Writers are readers too, and we at Here Be Magic shared what we're reading this month on our multi-author post, SUMMER + READING = BLISS

And we had so much fun working on it that we've decided to write another post together! 

As readers, we often wonder how a story gets written. But do you ever wonder where it was written? 

The Here Be Magic authors will be sharing their location secrets in
"WHERE DO WRITERS WRITE?"  Watch for it here on August 17th! 

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

July Sales & Contests:

Tuesday is the last day of the month - and the LAST CHANCE to take advantage of these.



Ebook Sale!


From July 1st - 31st, you can get ZONATON, a Sci-Fi Romance by Linda Mooney as an ebook for just 99 cents! (Available at this price only on Amazon and my website. Note: Click BUY EBOOK to get the Nook or PDF version.)


Ebook Sale!

Also on sale until July 31st: THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT (Haunted Holiday Book 1) by Dani Harper. Cool off this summer with a Yuletide paranormal romance - just 99 cents on Amazon.

Contest!


It’s “Christmas in July” with Dani Harper’s annual contest on Night Owl Reviews. LAST CHANCE to enter to win one of 10 prizes! 

Check it out at:

https://www.nightowlreviews.com/v5/blog/articles/take-a-ghost-to-the-beach-giveaway-by-dani-harper



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Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Seven Readly Sins

Posted by: Jenny Schwartz
Yes, it's a lame pun title, but I couldn't resist. Check out the Seven Readly Sins below.



You've let down your fellow readaholics...

When you, you wicked person, prioritize cleaning the house over reading your new book. Dust bunnies can look after themselves. They can even multiply by themselves. Read the book! (SLOTH)

When you buy into the yuppie mantra that GREED is good. Greed is not good! Money should be spent, and spent freely, on BOOKS! Ahem. No, hoarding books is not greedy. I swear. I write this in my book cave, walls lined with books.

When you waste hours on cooking. Do not do this! Order in. Answer the door in your pajamas with your book in one hand. Be comfy. Always have chocolate in the house. Chocolate consumed while reading is calorie-free. (GLUTTONY)

When you let an advance review copy of a much-anticipated new release get between you and a reader friend who scored a copy. I understand. Review copies are the essence of enviable. But still, reader friendships can withstand the soul-crushing ENVY of someone else getting to read the book you crave, first. I promise.

When you LUST over a guy or gal in the movies and on television. For true lust-worthiness, you can't beat a book hero/heroine. Have you noticed how the heroes in book-to-movie translations are never quite as good?

When you throw a tantrum over anything less than a book unexpectedly ending in a cliffhanger. All right, some WRATH is also allowed for annoying typos or delays in a book's release schedule or if the author kills off a lead character - don't do that, authors!

What reading "sins" have I forgotten?

And have you seen my new book? Missing Space Deputy would be a sin! Exiled and loving it; Deputy Thelma Bach is out for revenge. Great fun! Great reviews! Link:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CMLJBPW/ 



Wednesday, July 25, 2018

The Benefits of Having a Gym Membership

Posted by: Linda Mooney

As a writer, I spend a lot of time sitting at my desk, behind a computer. Or at least, with my laptop when I have to be away from the house. This doesn’t do a body good, to paraphrase an old commercial. So recently, I joined a gym that’s about five minutes away from my house. And I’m already noticing a difference.

For one thing, it gets me away from my current WIP. I can clear my head, and sometimes I’m able to come up with plot twists, or remind myself about a certain plot thread that needs tying up. This is especially true if I’m on the treadmill.

Reason #2, the gym plays music, and I find myself catching a tune or a lyric that intrigues me. Thank goodness for the Shazam app, that helps me discover who and what I’m listening to. I often listen to music while I’m writing, and I'm always on the lookout for “just the right song” to complement my current hero and heroine.

Reason #3, I’m getting some exercise! That’s always a good thing, right?

And finally Reason #4, have you seen some of those buff guys who workout there?

* * *

New!
WRYNTER
Paranormal/Contemporary Fantasy/Romantic Suspense
by Linda Mooney
Word Count:  35.1K
$2.99 e / $9.99 p

She reaches into minds to discover the truth. But this time, what she finds could get her killed.

Wrynter Poe is both blessed and cursed with a unique ability. She can’t read minds, but she can follow a person’s memories of an event they witnessed. Which is why she works as a special agent for the FBI in helping local law enforcement agencies solve crimes. But this gift comes with a price. She cannot touch the bare skin of another person, for fear of accidentally obtaining emotional discharge or feelings from them.

Lieutenant Hammond Blake is an undercover cop who's been assigned to help this strange woman, when a homicide case she's helping with suddenly takes a dangerous turn. While that case is being investigated, he accompanies her to her next job to make sure she stays safe. All it takes is one touch, one breach of her self-imposed isolation, for the both of them to discover how much they need each other.

What neither of them realize is that the homicide has far deeper roots within the police force. Roots involving corruption and a cover-up that will put both their lives in danger, and test Wrynter's abilities beyond her own endurance.

Warning! Contains latex gloves, a special necklace, skin-to-skin contact, a four-legged snitch, a motel on wheels, a chase in the middle of nowhere, and only one chance for two people to discover if their mutual attraction is the real thing.


Excerpt and buy links.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Flying High

Posted by: Shawna Reppert

I'm a timid driver. I’m a nervous flier, even on a commercial jet.  (This scenes with Raven's adventures in Mundane air travel in Raven's Wing are based on my own personal aversion.) You couldn't pay me enough to get on a small private aircraft.
With this background, you might be surprised that one of my childhood heroes was Amelia Earhart.
Part of the appeal, of course, was the mystique of her last flight and how she disappeared without a trace.  I was one of those kids who was all about myths, legends, and mysteries. Stonehenge. Nessie. UFOs. The Bermuda Triangle.
But Amelia (in my child-mind, we were always on a first-name basis), Amelia was far more to me than another mystery. She was a woman who did, a woman who dared. She ignored all those who said a woman's place was in the home, who said that women were inherently less capable, that real ladies don’t go adventuring. She set records. Congress awarded her a medal for her aerial courage and pioneering spirit.
I grew up in a very traditional Catholic family that believed in separate roles for men and women. I went to a Catholic school that tried to instill in me the feminine virtues of mild manners and modesty.
Amelia and women like her showed me another way to be. I galloped racehorses in high school. I handled birds of prey in college. I've shot a pistol and a longbow, and I've thrown javelin from the back of a moving horse. The unfortunately early onset if arthritis may have slowed me down a bit, but, damn, I had fun while I could.
And a tiny bit of Amelia's spirit lives on in my characters. Catherine Fairchild from my Werewolves and Gaslight series never listens to the people who would tell her what a lady can and can't do, either.


Monday, July 23, 2018

Here Be News for July 23, 2018

Posted by: Dani Harper, AUTHOR

All the latest from the authors at Here Be Magic

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In Case You Missed It:

Monday, July 16"Here Be News" A brand new release by Jenny Schwartz, ebooks on sale, a contest and more in today's HERE BE NEWS. 

Wednesday, July 18 - "Adventures in Rebranding: Cover Reveal of IRON" by PG Forte. Plus, more about her Celtic Legends series.

Joint post by the Here Be Magic Gang!
Thursday, July 19"A Closer Look at What I Write" Author Shona Husk reveals the kind of stories she likes to tell. (hint - she's MEAN to her characters!)

Friday, July 20"Summer + Reading = Bliss" Writers are readers too, and the authors at Here Be Magic have gotten together to talk about the books they're enjoying this season. 

****************************

July Sales & Promos:



Ebook Sale!


From July 1st - 31st, you can get ZONATON, a Sci-Fi Romance by Linda Mooney as an ebook for just 99 cents! (Available at this price only on Amazon and my website. Note: Click BUY EBOOK to get the Nook or PDF version.)


Ebook Sale!

Also on sale until July 31st: THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT (Haunted Holiday Book 1) by Dani Harper. Cool off this summer with a Yuletide paranormal romance - just 99 cents on Amazon.


Contest!


It’s “Christmas in July” with Dani Harper’s annual contest on Night Owl Reviews. This month you can enter to win one of 10 prizes! Check it out at:
https://www.nightowlreviews.com/v5/blog/articles/take-a-ghost-to-the-beach-giveaway-by-dani-harper



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Friday, July 20, 2018

SUMMER + READING = BLISS

Posted by: Dani Harper, AUTHOR


Image: Bigstock.com
Summertime and the reading is easy... 

Okay, that's not quite how the old song goes, but it's true. Reading and summer just naturally go together! Writers are readers too, and the authors at Here Be Magic have gotten together to talk about the books they're enjoying this season...
.....

Maureen:  "I just finished reading HAIR OF THE WERE by Eliza March. A fun, paranormal read that's perfect for light summer reading. I'm getting ready for vacation so I'm packing my kindle full of urban fantasy, paranormal romance and magic. My favorite genres to read on the plane and while relaxing on the beach." ~ Maureen L. Bonatch

Linda:  "I may write romance, but I love reading about and watching true crime stories (yay, Investigation ID!). I have a special “fondness” for anything regarding Jack the Ripper. A friend of mine was recently in London, and sent me several new books she found, one of which is THE BANK HOLIDAY MURDERS: The True Story of the First Whitechapel Murders by Tom Wescott. Very interesting reading!" ~ Linda Mooney

Dani:  "Some of my best childhood memories were from summers spent reading at the library or (more often) in a tree. So I often return to old favorites in the summer. Right now I'm RE-reading Neil Gaiman's dark fantasy, NEVERWHERE, Author's Preferred Text, and Isaac Asimov's I, ROBOT.  BTW, I'm not reading in trees anymore. Instead, I read while on my exercise bike. You'd think it'd be safer, but it turns out, I can fall off of that too!" ~ Dani Harper 

Ruth:  "I've just finished reading A SCANDALOUS DEAL by Joanna Shupe. Joanna writes about the Gilded Age, the time between the Civil War and World War I when the US population and economy grew quickly. There was a lot of political corruption and corporate financial misdealings. Many wealthy people lived very fancy lives. This time period is just ripe for romance stories and Joanna is fantastic and capturing the wealth, corruption and heat of it all.
"I read at night when the house is quiet and I can relax. It's my time to get out of the 'here and now' and into another place (usually historical) where I'm sure of a happily ever after." Ruth A Casie

Nicole:  "IRON AND MAGIC by Ilona Andrews. I love the world of alternating magic waves and technology and am so happy that this new spin-off series is starting as I await the last Kate Daniel's book. Hugh D'Ambray makes a great anti-hero and his interactions with his marriage-of-convenience bride, Elara, are a high point." ~ Nicole Luiken 

PG:  "I just started reading THE DEEPEST WELL by Juliette Cross. The Deepest Well is the first book in Juliette's new Dominion series, which is a spin-off of her Vessel Trilogy. Throughout the original trilogy we were teased with hints and glimpses of Kat and George, now we finally get to see the whole story. I can't wait! Even better, book two in the new series (Dommiel's story!) will be out next month." ~ PG Forte

Jody:  "Looking forward to SPINNING SILVER by Naomi Novik and DREAD NATION by Justine Ireland, waiting on my Kindle! Currently reading PROMISE OF FIRE by Amanda Bouchet. My kids are definitely reading more for pleasure over the summer since there’s no homework. But being a writer feels like you always have homework, so I can’t say that the summer is any different, reading-wise, for me than the rest of the year." ~ Jody Wallace

Your turn! What are YOU reading, or planning to read, this summer?

Thursday, July 19, 2018

A closer look at what I write

Posted by: Shona Husk
I’ve been working my way through Stealing Hollywood by Alexandra Sokoloff (it’s analytical—or at least the part I’ve gotten through is). And it’s been really interesting looking at the kinds of stories that I like…and the stories that I tend to tell.

I tend to like dramatic stories with high stakes, extraordinary events, but I like ordinary heroes. Or as my husband put it, I love an underdog. I especially like the kind of character that would usually be overlooked as hero material, maybe they aren’t that good at anything, but they are persistent and they won't give up.

I also like wounding my characters, they often end up shot or stabbed or otherwise bleeding on the page. I’m sure they signed a waiver before agreeing to be part of the story, although sometimes it must go a bit like this…

Character: this is so cool I’m the hero! And this world is amazing, I have magic you say? 
Me: yes now this is the villain and they are going to stab you in the leg and the gut, you then need to get away and pick a lock before they can kill you.
Character: er…what?
You should probably find something to fight with—you do know how to fight?
Character: this isn’t what I expected, this was meant to be a romance novel…where is the romance. Arggghhh!
Me: hmmm…well that happens later if you live
Character: *bleeding* what do you mean if I live? I’m the hero!
Me: and you will be, by the end ;)

I’m sure I’ll make other discoveries as I go. So if you like to analyse films and the books you write, you might like Stealing Hollywood too.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

More Adventures in Rebranding: Cover Reveal

Posted by: PG Forte

One of the things keeping me busy lately has been the challenge of re-releasing twenty books. That’s just this year’s total, by the way. Which, coming on the heels of last year’s ten titles, has meant an overhaul of my entire backlist—less one.

It’s been an interesting experience. I’m basically re-inventing myself as an author; and I’ve been learning a lot in the process.

One of the lessons I learned from last year’s bulk re-release was that rushing books back into print en masse, isn’t always a good idea. Book birthdays should be celebrated—and that’s hard to do when you’re releasing several at once. In fact, having tried it that way has kind of made me appreciate what parents of quintuplets (and other multiples) must go through. So this year I’ve been taking things more slowly. I’ll be releasing books individually and with (hopefully) a little more attention than last year’s books received.

With that in mind, I’d like to show off my new cover for IRON.



IRON (which I plan to re-release next month) is the story of a mortal man—a blacksmith, by the name of Gavin O’Malley—who reluctantly comes to the aid of a faery princess. I remember the exact moment the story presented itself to me. I was taking part in an online chat and someone posed the question: “What unlikely pairing would you like to write about?” 

Given that the Fae are well known to have an aversion to iron, and blacksmiths make their living with the stuff, I thought crafting a Happy Ever After for the two of them was pretty damned unlikely.  And, in fact, some people have argued that what I gave them didn’t count as an HEA at all. I disagree, of course, but everyone’s entitled to their opinion.

 In any case, I have always loved this book. It was the first truly stand alone book I wrote. However, I think I must really hate the idea of my books being lonely, or something, because I immediately had to invent a series for it to belong to. The four books in the so-called Celtic Legends series are all standalone stories that have nothing to do with one another other than having a vaguely similar setting: Ireland in the late 1800s; and sub-genre: somewhere along the fantasy/paranormal spectrum.

Book two in the series, OAK, which was previously released as The Oak King, is the story of a mortal woman who falls in love with both the Oak King and the Holly King—two Celtic deities that I’ve re-imagined as tree spirits.  That will also probably be re-released this year.

The other two books I have yet to write, but I hope to have at least one of them out by early next year. Selkie features a reclusive fisherman who rescues a wounded seal shifter; while Flight involves two childhood friends who are finally forced to confront their feelings for each other when they become involved with an owl shifter.

Covers for the other three books are also in the works—which is very exciting. One of the best parts of re-branding is the need for yummy new covers.  Such a hardship!

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.

Iron was selected as a Finalist for the EPIC 2011 ebook Awards in the Paranormal Erotic Romance category. 



Monday, July 16, 2018

Here Be News for July 16, 2018

Posted by: Dani Harper, AUTHOR

All the latest from the authors at Here Be Magic

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New Release:

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Space Deputy by Jenny Schwartz

Buy link:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CMLJBPW/

A millennium into the future, the Saloon Sector is where the Wild West meets the 1950s, in space, with robots. It’s where careers go to die.

Thelma Bach graduated top of her class after four years at the Galactic Justice academy. But she’s a Rock Sector citizen. The core worlders were never going to let her transcend her background. So she’s been assigned to serve her seven years as a deputy in the Saloon Sector. The message for the Federation’s out-world citizens is clear: you’ll never be our equal, so don’t even try.

The stuffy bureaucrats of the Galactic Justice service chose the wrong person to push around. Thelma will subvert her interstellar sheriff, charm artificial intelligences, fight bandits and hunt the legendary Eldorado Cache. But with the frontier region holding secrets of its own, she needs to choose her new allies wisely because a scary, business-suited enemy is hunting her.

Space Deputy is a fast-paced, offbeat space adventure.

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In Case You Missed It:



Monday, June 9 - "Here Be News" A new release, a contest, a sale and more!

Wednesday, July 11 - "My Hero" Why author Ruth A. Casie thinks Medieval-Renaissance knights make the best heroes.

Friday, July 13 - "Are You Afraid of Friday the 13th?" by Dani Harper. Check out the folklore and the superstitions surrounding this day!

Saturday, July 14 - Bring It Back(list) Feature - "ZONATON", a Sci-Fi Romance by Linda Mooney. See details below!

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Bring It Back(list) Feature:


ZONATON
Sci-Fi Romance
by Linda Mooney
Word Count: 54.9K
$0.99 e / $9.99 p / $19.95 a



She was the child of his heart. Then she grew up to become the love of his life.

A hundred years ago, the last people of Earth landed on planet AR617b. It was their only hope after being forced to flee the dead planet that was once their ancestral home.

The native inhabitants of AR617b, known as gerons, are sentient creatures that resemble a cross between dragons and griffins of old Earth lore. When they initially tried to destroy the settlers, a deal was made to ensure both species' survival. It was decided that each year, every five-year-old human child must take The Walk across a hundred meter field. If they don't stop or run, they will arrive safely on the other side, and be allowed to grow up and have families of their own. But if they break the rule, the gerons will kill them. Unless, by a strange quirk of fate, a geron decides to Pair with the child, taking and raising the human as its own.
 


Emmala took The Walk, and found herself adopted by one of the older gerons, an immense silvery-white creature named Zonaton. For the next fifteen years, he cared for her, protected her, and loved her. But now Emmala's real family wants her back, and they will do everything they can to have her returned, even if it means killing Zonaton, and starting an all-out war with the gerons.
What neither the settlers nor gerons realize is that there is another alien species watching and waiting for the two combatants to go into battle. Because when they do, that will be the aliens’ cue to destroy everyone and claim AR617b for their own.


Warning! Contains green fire, arrogant assholes, plunderberries, child abuse, rectangular spaceships, shadows on the wall, and a love so great, it defies death. 
Excerpt and Buylinks: http://lindamooney.com/Zonaton.htm
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Sales & Promos:





Ebook Sale!


From July 1st - 31st, you can get ZONATON, a Sci-Fi Romance by Linda Mooney as an ebook for just 99 cents! (Available at this price only on Amazon and my websiteNote: Click BUY EBOOK to get the Nook or PDF version.)






Ebook Sale!


Also on sale until July 31st: THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT (Haunted Holiday Book 1) by Dani Harper. This Yuletide paranormal romance is just 99 cents on Amazon .



Contest!

It’s “Christmas in July” with Dani Harper’s annual contest on Night Owl ReviewsThis month you can enter to win one of 10 prizes! 

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