Monday, August 31, 2020

HERE BE NEWS for August 31, 2020

Posted by: Dani Harper, Author


Monday, August 24 
"HERE BE NEWS" - All the latest from the fantasy romance authors at Here Be Magic, including something something something...  

Tuesday, August 25 -

"AN INFINITY OF KISSES" – Fantasy Flash Fiction by Linda Mooney. 

Thursday, August 27 -
WHAT'S IN A NAME? – Did you know that a book title cannot be copyrighted? Author PG Forte explains how naming stories is a lot like naming children. 


Thursday, August 27, 2020

What's in a Name?

Posted by: PG Forte

 There's always someone making a fuss about something in Romancelandia. This past month's drama involved two authors squabbling over a title. Author A already had a published book with the title, Author B wrote her to say she was planning to release her own book with the same title, and how did Author A feel about that? Author A wrote back to say she was not pleased. Author B announced to the world that she was a little bit afraid of Author A. 

Honestly, I think they both have too much time on their hands if they're worrying about things like that.  Because multiple books with the same title are really not at all unusual. They might even be the rule,  in some cases, rather than the exception. 

In point of fact, I just did a quick search for books with the same title of my first published book, Scent of the Roses (which is not currently in print). I gave up counting after I hit a dozen. I believe most of the thirty or so books I've published have had titles that are not unique. That's just the way things are. For one thing, you can't copyright titles. For another, in general, no one much cares. As an example of just how much it doesn't matter, I'd like to point out that if you write hockey romance, there may just be a requirement that--if you wish to be taken seriously--you absolutely must title one of your books Breakaway. I don't know anything at all about hockey, so I don't know what a breakaway is, or why it's so desperately compelling, but I believe aficionados of hockey romance searching for new-to-them authors could simply do a search for the title and easily find a list of every hockey romance author extant. 

Most authors I know view matching titles as a good excuse for joint promo. OTOH, I have to admit that it does occasionally become awkward. For example, my book Edge of Heaven was released within a week of another book with the same title. The other book was published by Samhain--who published my vampire series. So some readers who knew I had a book coming out with that title, and knew that I worked with Samhain, wrote to me gushing over the gorgeous cover. And I totally agreed: it was a gorgeous cover. In fact, I was quite jealous, because I didn't like my own cover nearly as much!  But there was worse to come. Review sites confused at receiving multiple requests for reviews of the same title, generally assumed there was an error, and only reviewed one. 

My publisher was ecstatic when they received notice that Edge of Heaven had received a Best Pick award at one of the sites they'd sent an ARC to. They made a big deal of it. Congratulated me publicly. Used a review snippet to promote my book. I really hated having to be the one to break it to them that all the applause wasn't for my book.

Eventually, it all got straightened out. And, sometime later, both publishers went out of business and I finally got a cover I really liked for the book. And I'm simply ecstatic about the cover for the not-exactly-a-sequel that is one of my current WIPs. 

The way I look at it, titling books is a lot like naming kids. It has nothing to do with you if some stranger happens to have the good taste to pick the same name you did. It's certainly nothing to get upset about. If it's your sister or best friend who does it, well that might be a little weird. 

It was a reckless act of passion that ended Edge's life and left him in Limbo--literally. Now, he's stuck here. While most of the other angels-in-training move quickly up the celestial ladder, Edge knows it can never be that simple for him. He's dealing with issues that are a lot more complicated than a simple lack of closure.


While Edge doesn't know for sure what it will take to get him into Heaven, there is one thing he's certain won't help; that would be his latest assignment guiding angel-baby Matteo Matinucci while the newbie find his wings.


But twenty-something Mattie--sexy, beautiful, recently departed and openly gay--could turn out to be the answer to all of Edge's prayers, as well as the fulfillment of all his fantasies, even the hot, sweaty, secret ones he's never confided to anyone.

If there was one thing Matteo Matinucci never lacked, it was determination. If he made up his mind to do something, it got done. He never let anything stop him. Not even dying.


So when he set his sights on Edge, he knew he'd get his man. How hard could it be to waltz into Limbo, sweep his fellow angel off his feet and return with him to Heaven--where they both belonged? A lot harder than he imagined, apparently.


Now Mattie's stuck in a place he doesn't belong, doing the one thing he never dreamed possible: falling in love.


Warning: Please be aware that this is not a sequel to Edge of Heaven. This is the side of the story you haven't heard yet. Mattie's side.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

"An Infinity of Kisses" - a Fantasy Flash Fiction by Linda Mooney

Posted by: Linda Mooney
"An Infinity of Kisses"
A Fantasy Flash Fiction

by Linda Mooney

It began with a rose, a single blood-colored velvet bud wearing a crystal drop of water like a tear on its petal. The flower sat on top of Illustra’s desk, between the keyboard and the computer monitor.
            Dropping into her chair, she picked up the flower by its stem and brought it to her nose. Closing her eyes, she savored its sweet, poignant perfume as a soft cloud of memories washed over her. There was no note or card accompanying the bud, but there didn’t need to be. She knew who’d sent it, and why, and she softly smiled.
            Later that evening, Illustra exited the elevator on her floor and fumbled her way around an armload of groceries, trying to unlock the door to her apartment without spilling anything. Getting the key turned in the lock, she pushed the door open with the toe of her boot and walked in, only to hear the crackle of paper beneath her foot.
            She hurried to the dining table to dump the bags before she dropped them, then went back to close the door and pick up the cream-colored envelope that had been slipped under the door. The front of the envelope was plain, the back flap simply tucked inside. Pulling out the flap, she withdrew a piece of folded paper. It was a printout of an ad from an entertainment website announcing that Thursday night was opening night for Mozart’s The Magic Flute, and written in the margin on the side was the message, “Tomorrow night, 9 o’clock, with you in my arms.”
            Tapping the paper against her lips, Illustra smiled and gave a small laugh. A sense of anticipation hugged her, momentarily relieving the aches and soreness brought on by the day. After laying the note on the table, she took her bags into the kitchen to begin putting away her groceries.
            By eleven that evening, she finished her last report, emailed it to the police chief, and shut down her computer. Turning out the lights, she pulled her nightgown closer around her body and stepped out onto the patio balcony of her rooftop apartment. Closing her eyes, she breathed in the sweet night air.
            She knew Steev couldn’t come to her tonight. He was out there saving the world one bit at a time, the same way she did. There wouldn’t be a tonight, but there was tomorrow. She shivered slightly, not from the cool pre-Fall air, but knowing that her loneliness could be counted in mere hours and minutes instead of weeks or days.
            She took another deep breath, and it was as if she could feel another heartbeat keeping pace with hers. A strong, slower rhythm of love she had heard, had shared, many times before.
            “Goodnight, my love,” she whispered, expecting, then receiving the gentle surge that cupped her heart in reply. Smiling once more, she went to bed and dreamed of golden hills and green valleys, and blue eyes that were able to look deep into her soul.
            It was mid-morning the next day when a delivery man walked up to Illustra’s desk and handed her a package bound in brown butcher paper and twine. She stared at the package, turning it over several times before setting it down on her desk and using her power to sear the cord. Unwrapping it slowly, she discovered it was a slim book with a brown leather cover. The title ran up the spine in gilt letters. “Selected Works of Voltaire,” she read aloud, puzzled as to the sender’s choice in literature. Curious, she thumbed open the volume and discovered it parted at a page already marked with a scrap of paper. A simple quote had been underlined to catch her attention.
            If one could write kisses, I would send you an infinity of them.
            Illustra felt her face grow warm as the first hint of tears stung her eyes. Her nose tickled, and she grabbed a tissue from the box on her desk. “What am I going to do with you?” she murmured to herself. Taking a deep breath, she shoved the book into her satchel and left to answer her next call for help.
            It was close to seven p.m. before she finished with her last emergency call. Flying home, she hurried to take a quick shower. She was nibbling on a sandwich while she was getting dressed when the doorbell rang a little past seven-thirty. She quickly zipped up the back of her royal blue beaded gown as she went to answer the door.
            “Who is it?”
            “Finn. Can I come in?”
            She unlocked and opened it, smiling as the police chief gave her the once-over and whistled softly. “Some outfit, Illie.” He nodded appreciatively.
            “Thank you. Have a seat.”
            Albert Finn parked himself on the arm of the couch and watched as Illustra headed back to the bedroom to finish dressing. “I’m not interrupting anything, am I? I was on my way home and I thought I’d swing by for a sec.”
            She reemerged, inserting the other stud into her ear, and stopped beside the end table. “You could say that. What’s up? I know this isn’t another emergency because you don’t make house calls.” She raised an eyebrow at the man.
            Finn fidgeted. “How did I do, Illie? Was it too much? Or not enough?”
            “It was perfect,” she hurried to assure him. “In fact, I didn’t know what to expect when you asked me to be your guinea pig. You surprised me. I didn’t know you had such a romantic streak in you.”
            “You liked it then? The rose?”
            “It was a nice touch. All women love roses. You should send flowers more often.”
            “How about the invitation to the opera? A lot of women like opera, so I thought I’d give it a shot, just to see if I might be able to develop a taste for it,” he admitted. “Or maybe I should’ve chosen a musical. What do you think?”
            Illustra gave him a big smile. There was something boyishly appealing about the man’s charming quality in trying to please her. “Mozart’s a good choice. I like him, and I’m not even from this planet. It’s a light piece she might enjoy. And that was a nice touch, slipping the note under my door.”
            Albert bowed his head and tried to hide a grin of embarrassment. “I read a few articles online about how middle-aged men can get back into the dating scene,” he confessed. “In fact, that’s where I got the idea for a book of poetry. I went to that little shop on the east side that Deidra used to love going to. That’s where I found that book by Voltaire. The shopkeeper’s the one who suggested it. I rather like that quote about an ‘infinity of kisses,’ didn’t you?”
            Leaning over and laying a hand on his shoulder, Illustra remarked teasingly, “It almost made me think twice about going out tonight.” She laughed warmly, noting how his eyes grew wider, and the man smiled in return.
            He cleared his throat. “So, you think I might convince Cheryl to go out with me if I do for her what I did for you?”
            “The woman would have to be a mental case not to. You’ve always had the looks and the intelligence. And on top of that, you’re the police chief!”
            “But it’s been so long since I’ve done the dating scene,” he half argued.
            “Then it’s time you dove back into that pool. I realize it’s been a while, but since then, you’ve developed that suave and debonair style that will drive any woman wild. You may be in your forties, Al, but you’re nowhere near being over the hill.” She eyed his slightly grayed hair and the creases in his face. The job had aged him, yes, but more in the way time aged a fine bourbon. “May I add one more word of advice?” At the man’s nod, she continued. “Just remember this. It doesn’t matter what you do, just as long as you mean it.”
            That puzzled him. “Please explain.”
            Illustra sighed. “You can buy a woman all the presents and flowers you want. You can take her places and spend all the money you have. But you won’t win a woman’s heart unless she knows you mean it. Romance is empty unless it’s from the heart, my dear friend.”
            He clenched his jaw. “I understand. Okay, I’ll try.” He glanced at his watch and rose to his feet. “Cripes, the ballgame starts in fifteen minutes, and I’m keeping you from your date. Thank you for the advice, Illie. And thanks again for letting me use you to bounce ideas off of.”
            She followed him over to the door. He opened it and paused on the threshold as she remarked, “You’re welcome. I’ll admit, it was…a very interesting experience. Just remember what I said. You have to mean everything you say and everything you do. If you don’t, a woman will be able to sense that immediately. At least, I will.”
            Albert gave her another quick smile and started down the hallway toward the elevator, but stopped when she closed the door behind her. Once he heard the click of the deadbolt, he walked back to the door and ran his fingertips over the cold wood. “I did, Illie. I truly did,” he mouthed without sound. Having made the confession, he turned and walked away.

~ ~ ~

Sweet Christian Romance
by Linda Mooney writing as Lynn Gayle
Word Count: 22K
$2.99 e / $6.99 p

After getting a call to the warehouse district, firefighter Knox Norville was ready to write it off to arson. The abandoned buildings are home to many vagrants and drug addicts, but he arrives ready to do his job regardless. He wasn’t expecting the effect this call would have on his life...or the one decision he made that could possibly ruin him forever.

By saving one young woman, and going back to look for her dog, he thought he was doing the right thing, not neglecting his duties. But what he soon learns hits hard, and his conscience eats at him. One horrible thing after another on the worst day of his life lands him a hefty fine, community service, and possible jail time, but is it all divine intervention?

Jenise Danziger had nothing physically, but through her faith, she had everything she needed, except maybe a permanent home for herself and Corky, her faithful companion. But she trusted that in time God would provide, and put her exactly where she's supposed to be. And just maybe that was in the arms of her rescuer.

Excerpt and Buy Links

Monday, August 24, 2020

HERE BE NEWS for August 24, 2020

Posted by: Dani Harper, Author


Monday, August 17 
"HERE BE NEWS" - All the latest from the fantasy romance authors at Here Be Magic, including something something something...  

Tuesday, August 18 -

"10 WAYS TO BECOME A WEREWOLF" ...and not one of them involve being bitten! Dani Harper, author of the Changeling Series, shares her most popular post.

Thursday, August 20 -
CAN YOU TAKE THE PARANORMAL OUT OF A PARANORMAL WRITER? – No ghosts, no monsters, no supernatural powers? Author Maureen L. Bonatch discovers that the scariest characters of all just might be human beings. The result, “Till Death”, releases November 13th.


Thursday, August 20, 2020

Can You Take the Paranormal Out of a Paranormal Writer?

Posted by: Maureen


by Maureen Bonatch

I’ve joined up with a group of 13 other authors to write a short story to be release on Friday, November 13th. I’d always wanted to write something a little darker, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity. As I reviewed the requirements to connect the story one thing stood out—no paranormal.


Wait? What? I hesitated but then thought, sure, that’s no problem. Well, it was more of a problem initially than I anticipated. As I wrote the story I had to keep chasing out ghosts, and other paranormal elements that were just dying to get into the story. I hadn’t realized how much my mind strayed to a paranormal path on its own.


A Long Short Story

The story started and stopped and I shifted things around and then got frustrated that a short story—with a goal of 13,000 words—was proving harder to write than a full-length novel. I took some time to reflect on the story and the characters that were waiting to tell their tale. That’s when I realized what I’d known all along. The truth is often stranger than fiction. This year has proven that time and time again, but when you take a look at the news, and the people that fill the pages with bizarre stories that leave us asking ourselves, what would make someone act that way?


The Darker Side of Life

Indeed, what would. I’ve always been fascinated with the mind. Many of the movies that frighten me the most are the ones that seem as if they could actually happen because they’re about normal people, acting abnormally evil.


The story began to write itself without any paranormal elements and came out pretty creepy (as I’d hoped) just the same. I discovered I did enjoy writing a little bit on the darker side, but I still loved my paranormal elements.


You can be the judge this fall when Till Death is released along with 12 other author’s murderous mysteries and suspense stories just in time for Friday the 13th—if you dare.


If you want to find out more about the creation of this story, and more, don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter.

Plus you get a free magical story.


Author Bio: Maureen Bonatch grew up in small town Pennsylvania and her love of the four seasons—hockey, biking, sweat pants and hibernation—keeps her there. While immersed in writing or reading paranormal romance and fantasy, she survives on caffeine, wine, music, and laughter. A feisty Shih Tzu keeps her in line. Find Maureen on her websiteFacebookTwitter


Be the first to know about Maureen’s book sales and new releases by following her on BookBub, Amazon and/or signing up for her newsletter

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Posted by: Shawna Reppert


Stories have always been vital to humans. Anthropologists believe that this importance goes back as far as our cave-dwelling, mammoth-hunting distant ancestors. Stories are a way to impart important knowledge (children who wander too far from the fire at night will get eaten by something scary; if you’re going to go out hunting something as big as a mammoth it’s a good idea to bring friends). Stories help to pass on the tribe’s culture by illustrating its morals and values and explaining its view of the cosmos. Though stories have been around since the dawn of  homo sapiens, the ways in which stories are shared have varied greatly over time.

Our earliest human ancestors had to rely on oral traditions, sometimes aided cave paintings and carvings. Even after humans developed systems of writing, parchment was expensive and most people could not read until relatively recently in anthropological terms. This is why bards were so revered. They brought new tales and made sure the old ones were not lost. Even after paper came into common usage Gutenberg refined the printing press, books were a luxury out of reach for many people for centuries.

As with most technologies, eventually the costs came down enough to make books affordable for everyone, at least in the developed world. Then came e-books and the great debate over ‘real’ versus digital books.  Audiobooks have been around for a while in the form of  books on tape (and later books on CD) but the need for a tape or CD player meant that they didn’t have a lot of advantages over physical books. They were great for the visually impaired and long-haul truckers, but for most readers they were a mere novelty.

Then came the prevalence of smart phones, and now most people don’t go anywhere without a little mini-computer in their pocket. The smart phone, in addition to its many, many other functions is, with the aid of free apps, a perfect audiobook player.

Critics argue that listening to audiobooks isn’t really reading, but studies have shown that the same parts of the brain activate whether the subject is reading a book or listening to audiobooks. If you think about it, audiobooks are just stories coming around full circle to their origins in oral traditions. (I have to wonder how many storytellers thought the printed word was the death of true stories, and how many traditionalists insisted that paper would never have the same feel as a really nice parchment.)


And, if you don’t mind me mentioning, my award-winning steampunk Victorian detective novel, A Hunt by Moonlight, is now available on audiobook as well as print and e-book. You can buy it through Audible, Amazon, or ITunes. You can even download it for free with a free trial subscription to Audible.



Shawna Reppert is an award-winning author of fantasy and steampunk who keeps her readers up all night and makes them miss work deadlines.  Her fiction asks questions for which there are no easy answers while taking readers on a fine adventure that grips them heart and soul.  You can find her work on Amazon and follow her blog on her website (  You can friend her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter, where she posts an amazing array of geekery. In the past, Shawna has on occasion been found in medieval garb on a caparisoned horse, throwing javelins into innocent hay bales that never did anything to her. More recently, she has been spotted in Victorian dress taking tea with her costumer friends.


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