Okay…

When I’m reading through romance author’s blogs on my Google Reader… nekkid baby pics is not what I want to see. Not that I have a problem with kids, but… um… when you’re also posting hunky dude pictures… no, just, no.

Contest Winners

As there were a total of 2 entrants in the poetry contest I was holding for The Twilight Deception‘s release contest… instead of closing it, we’ll have 2 winners. 🙂

AJ and Cia, please contact me at [email protected] for your prizes. 😀

Excerpt Monday

Excerpt Monday time! 😀 The following is an excerpt from Severed Spirits Rising, a prequel to my urban fantasy / paranormal romance Shadowguard series with LSB. 🙂

~*~

I made my way to the bar, squeezing my way through the throng of people. “I hate crowds,” I muttered under my breath, strengthening my shields so I didn’t enter the TMI zone. Sometimes being an empath sucks.

Eventually, I got to the bar and let out a sigh of relief. The bartender came up to me, a cheery grin on his face. He almost had to yell to be heard. “What’s your poison?”

“None, thanks,” I yelled back. I fumbled in my pocket for the picture of Nancy and held it up to him. “But I was wondering if you recognized this woman?”

He took a closer look. “Oh, Nan! Yeah, she’s a regular here. Doesn’t dress like that, though.”

I glanced at the frilly white pinafore she wore in the picture and laughed. “No, I would suppose not. When’s the last time you saw her here?”

He held up his hand and walked over to the other bartender and said something to her. She nodded, and he came back to me. “Let’s step outside, where it’s quieter.”

“Great idea,” I said, and followed him outside and down the street a bit. I shivered; it wasn’t that cold outside, but compared to the heat of the club, it might ‘s well have been the Arctic.

“By the way, I’m Jared,” he said with a smile.

“Arielle,” I offered in return, then decided to get the discussion back on track. “So when’s the last time you saw Nancy?”

Jared rubbed his chin thoughtfully. “Last Saturday. She didn’t show on Wednesday, which had some of us concerned. She almost never misses a day unless something’s really wrong.” His eyes snapped to me. “Is that why you’re here? Did something happen?”

I bit my lip. Great. Time to drop the bomb. “Nancy died Wednesday night.  The cops ruled it a suicide, but her boyfriend and I don’t think that’s true. We think something else happened.”

His face went pale as a china teacup. “Oh my god. I had no idea.”

Oh, great. Jared looked like he was about to cry. I felt awkward as an anorexic hippo performing Swan Lake. I don’t do comfort well. “I’m sorry,” I said. “I wish there was something I could say.”

His eyes snapped to mine. “There isn’t. But there is something you can do.”

“What?”

“Find out who did this and bring them to justice.” Jared set his jaw, eyes blazing with fury. “It’s too late to save Nan, but maybe you can save someone else from ending up like her.”

“That’s the plan.”

~*~

Check out a few of the other Excerpt Monday pieces here:

Mel Berthier, Urban Fantasy (PG 13)
Bryn Donovan, Paranormal  (PG)
RF Long, Paranormal (PG 13)
Crista McHugh, Paranormal  (PG 13)

Evie Byrne, Historical Romance (R)
Grace Draven, Fantasy Romance (R)
Cate Hart, YA- Paranormal  (R)

Aislinn Kerry, Paranormal (R)
Kirsten Saell, Erotic – Fantasy (NC 17)

The Twilight Deception release — and contest!

Yay! Release day! The Twilight Deception is officially out from Liquid Silver Books. 😀

When the FBI receives word of vampire-related murders, they order tough-as-nails resident witch Arielle Thompson to investigate. But the last thing Arielle expects is to have her butt saved by a friendly vampire who claims he’s tracking the master vamp responsible for the murders.

Despite her wounded pride, Arielle can’t help her inexplicable attraction to this sexy-as-sin vampire who calls himself simply “Jackson.” He reluctantly informs her that their enemy is far more powerful than reports said — and his powerbase is only increasing.

Arielle and Jackson must team up to stop him, before he grows too powerful to defeat.

I hope it sounds as interesting to y’all, because I certainly had fun writing it. 🙂

Now, the contest…

Everyone in the last contest gave me some great ideas, and I think I will be using a particular one credited to Warinbear over at LiveJournal: poetry. Or, pooh-etry, if you prefer. 😉

Limerick, haiku, sonnet, whatever. Be creative, and make me laugh. But it must match a theme: Darkness, hope, vampires, paranormal, blood, love. Mix, match, however you please. As long as your masterwork has some relation, it’s wide open for the contest.

The winner will receive a free copy of The Twilight Deception and mention in the acknowledgments of the sequel (or, a named walk-on role, if preferred). I’ll name the winner one week from today. 🙂

Have fun! 😀

Release date! Pre-contest contest!

The Twilight Deception will officially release from Liquid Silver Books on June 8th, 2009.

YAY! *pops da bubbly*

I’m so looking forward to this book being out again. It’s the first in a series about Arielle, a witch reluctantly working for the FBI, and Jackson, the alien vampire that turns her world upside down. Murder, magic, mayhem — what more can you want? 😀

(Oh yeah, hot sex. That’s there, too. Really!)

Anyway… as I do with all my releases, I’ll be holding a contest. But! I have no idea what. Yes, I’m drawing a blank. I want to do something that is creative, fun, and quick. I don’t want to stick with Ye Olde “Pick A Number” again.

So! This is where you come in.

Between today (May 30) and June 7, comment to this post with contest ideas. I’ll look them over, and my favorite will win a prize book from my backlist. (Or perhaps a gift certificate to an online booksteller, if the winner already has all my backlist 🙂 )

Just a note — I’ll be running these contests concurrently on LJ and my blog. There will, thus, be TWO winners — one from each!

Sound fun? Okay! On your mark… get set… brainstorm! 😀

New cover! and new site!

Firstly, I want to thank y’all for the comments made on Monday’s excerpt. I had a blast writing that book, and I’m glad that other people seem to like it as much. 😀

Secondly, I have a new website design! If you’re reading this by RSS, please click over and check it out, because it’s gorgeous. I owe major thanks to Ilona Andrews for the header design, and to Rowan Larke for all the work she did getting the theme worked out and colored. Kudos and everlasting gratitude, ladies!

And best for last… *drumroll* I have a new cover!

Isn’t it gorgeous? Christine Griffin did an amazing job! If you’d like to see the full size version, click here. I know what’s going to be my desktop wallpaper for awhile! 😉

Excerpt Monday

I’m participating in Excerpt Monday, organized by the lovely Bria Quinlan and Mel Berthier from Romance Divas. The following is an excerpt from my forthcoming paranormal romance novella from Liquid Silver Books, The Twilight Deception:

~*~

Jackson stared at me like I’d grown a second head, then his expression softened. “She’s beyond help, Arielle. I tried to help when I first found her, but she attacked me and would not relent. I touched her mind. There is nothing there but a frenzied beast.”

“So there’s nothing that can be done?”

He shook his head. “No. The first twenty-four hours are critical. I found her too late.”

“I don’t believe it,” I said flatly. “You’re just trying to make excuses cause you didn’t have the balls to help her.”

Jackson snarled. Faster than I could track, much less counter in my state, he grabbed my shoulders and swung me off the toilet. My back slammed against the wall, and he held me a good foot off the ground. Pissed off, I aimed my knee at his balls, but he moved to the side and slid his hip between my legs, preventing me from striking out again–and exciting me more than a little bit. Bastard.

“I am only going to say this once,” he hissed, eyes wild with fury. “If there had been any hope of it, I would have saved her. Do you think I like what he’s done? He has no respect for human lives, nor those of his own kind! She was beyond hope when I found her, yet I tried anyway. There is nothing that can be done to save her.”

I struggled against him, trying to free myself. Not like it did any good. I’m not weak by any stretch of the imagination, but I’m not a vampire, either, and he had a good advantage on me. “How do I know you’re telling me the truth?”

His mouth distorted into a grimace. “Are you questioning my honor?”

Oops. “Look, I don’t know what it’s like on your world, but around here, honor’s just a dead horse that a few old geezers keep beating.”

Jackson tilted his head, blinking with obvious confusion. “Your people … have no concept of honor?”

“Oh, we have the concept. We just decided it was antiquated and tossed it out the window. We replaced it with Egocentricity 9.0.” I hesitated a moment. “Can you put me down now? This isn’t exactly the most comfortable position, you know.”

His anger given way to shock, Jackson lowered me to the ground. “I hear your words, but I … I cannot believe…”

“You really haven’t been around here long, have you?”

Jackson shook his head mutely, looking totally bewildered. Great. So not only is he an alien vampire, he’s a Klingon vampire with a bad case of culture shock. How lovely.

I clapped him on the shoulder, deciding to ignore the whole pushing-me-up-against-the-wall deal. At least for now. Like it or not, we had to work together if we wanted any chance at finding the dude. Afterwards, on the other hand … “Don’t worry. You’ll get used to it. Now. About that girl and tracking Eliro…”

~*~

If you’re interested in reading more snippets of great work, check out these other Excerpt Monday blogs:

Aislinn Kerry

Elise Logan

Crista McHugh

Kirsten Saell

RF Long

and check out the main Excerpt Monday page for a full list of participants! Enjoy! 😀

Yay!

Final edits turned in, and I believe The Twilight Deception is off to the copyeditor’s. I think we’re waiting on cover art because there was a snag that took some time to sort out, but hopefully I should have a release date soon. 😀

Now, to work on Book 2…

Excuse the dust…

I’ve re-themed the website yet again, because I found the old design a bit hard to navigate. While I liked it aesthetically, navigation is more important. 😉

A few things are out of whack, like that there’s a second “Home” link I’ll need Morgan to get rid of because it seems to be hard-coded into the theme, along with a second “Meta” box. Overall though, everything is viewable and working fine!