Saturday, May 20, 2017

News: Coming Soon! Releasing Chaos

Well...

I thought I had another day to get my Reading Radar post set up... LOL! I lost track of my days. I was going to see about putting one together quickly this morning, but as I looked over the blogs for the last months I realized I forgot to make an announcement.

So today's post is about Releasing Chaos, the final book in the Sumeria's Sons series. The release date is Wednesday, August 2. I'm both happy and sad that the series is coming to an end. Twin Flames was the first book I submitted to a publisher. It and it's characters hold a very special place in my heart. I keep telling myself it'll be okay because I do plan a couple of spinoffs, Sumeria's Magi and Sumeria's Children, where I'll be able to revisit Tristan, Ushna, and Brian even if only on the periphery. :-)

As with all my other work, I worry whether others will enjoy the story. But with Releasing Chaos I did a couple of things that I've never done before and that makes me more nervous than normal.

With the series written in first person, originally only with Tristan's point of view, the closer I got to the end the more I realized I had been shortsighted. The last two books I added other much-needed point of views. In Dragon's Eye, Ushna and Brian were added, but when I attempted to write Releasing Chaos from only those three points of view I ran into a lot of problems because a good portion of the story wasn't being told.

Needless to say, it took a little longer to write than what I had anticipated. I can't say that I was happy at first to add other POV's. Everyone was seen from Tristan's point of view, giving only an outsider's perception into the other characters. And since it was written in first person, changing it to third person for the last volume wasn't an option. So, I had to write these other points of view in first person. I admit I struggled with that a little bit. Yes, I knew who they were and their motivation, but writing in first, person, for me at least, is very intimate. So I had to get closer to them to understand who they really were in order to tell their story, in essence, show you who they were. I hope I did a good job.

I should be getting edits soon, and I know it's going to be a nightmare. (I peeked at what I submitted and started picking it apart myself so I know there's a ton of issues.) Between that and the half dozen to twelve flash fiction pieces that I intend on writing for the release/blog tour for the book, I'm going to be a bit busy. Which also means that unless I spend a day geting together my Saturday post, a few of those might be missing between now and August 2 LOL! I might have to spend a day or two writing several and getting them scheduled so that I don't have to worry about it.

That's it! Releasing Chaos can be preordered on the publisher's website, Less Than Three Press. (To have a look, just click on the title below.) It won't hit the third party distributors until release day.


Title: Releasing Chaos
Series: Sumeria's Sons, 6
Categories: Gay / Paranormal / Poly / Urban Fantasy
Word Count: 132k


Blurb:

Everything Tristan, Ushna, and Brian have fought for comes down to the moment they face Inanna and Marduk. Before then, Ushna must embrace his destiny and be transformed by Tiamat. But he returns with a fractured mind and will need the help of the new firebird or he'll be lost to the insanity of a primordial God. If he's lost, so is the balance Brian and Tristan sorely need.

Tristan has vowed to care for his ex-Flame, Theo Sullivan, who is doomed to forget more and more with each use of his new ability. When not dealing with his stubborn ex, Tristan must free the warriors stolen by the government and devise a trap for Inanna.

And that's only the start of the challenges, and everything that can still go wrong.


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Naming Rites Blog Tour #poetry #giveaway


Welcome all!

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Gary Boehlhower author of Naming Rites and 
Marrow, Muscle, Flight 

Hi Gary, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?


What were you like at school?


In kindergarten I ran away from school. When I got home, my mom made me pick some flowers and we walked back to school and gave them to the teacher. But I don’t think the teacher liked me after that. In first grade, the teacher gave me D’s and F’s—this was a time when students in first grade still got D’s and F’s. And she wrote on my report card that “He doesn’t play well with others.” I was pretty much a failure in every department. But then in second grade my teacher, Sister Michael, had me read some poems and I loved them. I even memorized a couple of poems and Sister Michael had me recite them to the class and then in upper grade classrooms. That experience gave me confidence and a purpose. I became a very good student after that.


So, what have you written?

I have written four recent books: two collections of poetry—Marrow, Muscle, Flight and just out Naming Rites. I’ve also written two non-fiction books—Choose Wisely: Practical Insights from Spiritual Traditions and Mountain 10: Climbing the Labyrinth Within. My poetry is also published in many anthologies and journals. My most recent book “Naming Rites” is about persons and things and experiences that name me, touch me, brand me, influence me, scar me. I am a soft clay vessel imprinted by the hands and objects and names of those who have been part of my life. I am who I am because of love and betrayal, because my mother taught me how to dig in the garden and plant seeds, because my grandmother taught me to lift my eyes to the stories of stars, because of bread and hunger, passion and assault, gay body and questioning mind. We only have one gift to give the world and that’s the uniqueness of our own voice, our own story, our own particular and unique way of being in the world. “Naming Rites” is a way of saying my name with full voice, and hopefully it might inspire others as well to continue to give themselves away.


Where can we buy or see them? 

Holycowpress.org and amazon.com


What are you working on at the minute?

I have three book projects on the burners. One is a book of non-fiction that deals with men’s circles or personal development groups. I have had a small group of men with whom I have met for over 20 years. The group has made a huge difference in holding me accountable to personal growth and goals. It is an amazing group of men who speak their own truth, listen deeply to each other, and love each other unconditionally. This book will tell our story of coming together, some of the stories from our own individual lives, and the processes we use to help each other delve into our own wisdom and values. The second book that is in the beginning stages is a collection of poems about living on stolen land—recognizing that the land I walk on every day belonged to the indigenous tribes who lived here with a sense of sacred trust and stewardship rather than the illusion of ownership. I hope to travel to sacred sites and have conversations that will help me understand more deeply my indigenous brothers and sisters and how I can step more softly on this land. The third book is a collection of poems written from the labyrinth—an ancient form of meditative walking that I use as a spiritual practice. Here’s a poem from the new collection:



IF THE WAY IS LOST

If the way is lost in you
stop breathe pay attention.
Step again onto the path of your belonging
the path that calls from the center
of who you are and who you long to be.
Claim the journey that belongs to
your song, your story, your name.
Claim this day as the next step
this day as a promise
as a small hope that wakes up
something inside you that has been sleeping.
Step to the center of that hope
and let it surround you with light.
Let go of everything that doesn’t call your name
of all the baggage that keeps you in chains.
Let go of your certainty and your doubt
of your small plans and your grand designs.
Take this step
this one in front of you.
This breath this step is the only path
that brings you alive.


Why do you write?

The classic response of course, is because I have to. And I think there is something fundamentally true about that. People who are following their heart, no matter what profession they are in, say they have been called to do what they are doing. It’s part of who they are. Writing is that way for me. Along with being a teacher for 45 years, mostly in college, I have also been writing in one form or another all of that time. Some years the writing was mostly in my journal, some years it was predominantly scholarly articles or educational texts, but I have always been a writer. I love words, the process of finding the right ones to express the meaning, the emotion, or the story. If I had to say what I hope to accomplish in my writing it would be to encourage others to listen to their own inner wisdom, their own authentic self, and to live that out in the world. Every person is a unique and precious gift to the world and we need everyone’s voice, everyone’s passion.


What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?

For me the hardest part of creating this collection of poetry was deciding what really belongs together, what poems support and reinforce each other, or take different perspectives on the same experience or idea. And the really hard part was cutting the 20 or 30 poems that I love that there just wasn’t room for. Another challenge that I took up in this book was to write about my own experience of sexual abuse for the first time. Through the writing, I learned again that it is possible to heal and also that healing is never over. I learned that I can be more vulnerable than I thought possible. I have read some of these very vulnerable poems to several audiences now and I have learned that I am still standing after I read them.


Title: Naming Rites
Author: Gary Boelhower
Release Date: May 16th 2017
Genre: Poetry


BLURB

Gary Boelhower’s third collection of poems explores the ways we are named and branded with multiple identities, a clay vessel molded and imprinted from the inside and the outside by those who know us or think they do, by wounds, worries, stones, and nicknames, by place and absence, by teachers and traitors. Boelhower dares to name the body’s blows and pleasures and how they are celebrated in solitude and connection. His language soars with ecstasy and burrows into hidden places in the soul. His lyrics tell how the world’s pain lodges in the cells and how the fragrance of summer stars opens an aperture to healing. Boelhower is winner of the Foley Prize from America and the Midwest Book Award for his second collection Marrow, Muscle, Flight.


Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK
(links will be updated on May 16th) 

Find Naming Rites on Goodreads



Reviews

Naming Rites is such a generous collection it offers both blessings and confessions, dirt and bread, miracles and explosions, cruelty and mercy, great blue herons who resemble monks and blue jays clowning around, a lover's tender touch and the horrors of the nightly news. In second grade, Gary Boelhower admits, he won 'the glow-in-the-dark statue of Mary,' and his religious drive, now mature, is still alive in these poems. They aim for (and often achieve) not just a personal record but transubstantiation, transforming experience into wisdom, fear into freedom, language into song. Naming Rites is the autobiography of a soul, reaching out beyond the boundaries of the self. Bart Sutter, author of Cow Calls in Dalarna and Chester Creek Ravine: Haiku

Gary Boelhower's poems resist convention and confinement even as they speak deeply of and from history, family, and community. The persona names and narrates himself into being as he chronicles profound and tender encounters as well as 'tectonic shifts and betrayals.' Software engineers meditate, children go hungry, and faith is lost and reconfigured. 'Let me not forget to be what I have spoken,' Boelhower reminds himself and his readers. Naming Rites is an important and sustaining book for our times, with its 'cadence that calls us into the streets with voices/of protest and hope.' Julie Gard, author of Home Studies



EXCERPT

IN THE SILENCE


footsteps crunch on the cold snow
heaven’s full of falling mercy
the big arms of the pine
spread in prayer shawled in white
the whole everyday machine muffled

if everyone could say their name
in such silence we might hear
each one might send their small swirl
of hopes and prayers
spiraling out like sufi robes
in the dervish dance
and we might all
hear each other’s hands rise up
and we would know the one world’s song

all our rituals are attempts at listening
all our songs a preparation
for emptiness when our words
have all fallen away because we know
we are all whirling together

wherever you are however you do it
notice how we are all whirling together
in the great round dance
on this tiny rock with fire in its soul
through the grand galaxies
spinning with mercy and wonder


GIVEAWAY: WIN a copy of Naming Rites and Marrow, Muscle, Flight by Gary Boelhower


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Author Bio

Gary Boelhower’s poetry has been published in many anthologies and journals. His second collection of poems published in 2011, Marrow, Muscle, Flight won the Midwest Book Award. He was awarded the Foley Prize in poetry from America magazine in 2012 and a career development grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council in 2010. His recent nonfiction books include Choose Wisely: Practical Insights from Spiritual Traditions, and Mountain 10: Climbing the Labyrinth Within,(co-authored with Joe Miguez and Tricia Pearce). His third collection of poems, Naming Rites, was published in April by Holy Cow! Press. Gary teaches courses in spirituality, ethics and leadership at The College of St. Scholastica where he is a professor in the Theology and Religious Studies Department.



Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

What's On the Reading Radar #WishList #TBR

What am I doing? Well, I actually got this post up for one. It's been a couple of weeks since I put together the reading interest post. The rest of what I have been doing is working on the Sumeria's Sons standalone WIP. It's coming along nicely. I hit the 14k mark on Thursday which is very cool. I thought that I could pull this story in at 40k... yeah, it might be a smidge or more longer. It's hard to tell right now.

I have a new laptop and I've been slowly moving files over that weren't in dropbox or the onedrive, meaning that my folder for Reading Radar isn't on here yet. So the list for today is short. Only what caught my eye this week and last. Hope you see something that peaks your interest as well!

Title: Alpha Academy: The Omega
Series(The Omega Curse Series #2)
Author(s): AY Venona
Length: 194 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Alpha-Omega verse / Non-Mpreg / Gay / Fantasy / Vampires / 

Notes:

Blurb: When Daniel Saga and his friends go traipsing into the forest, they stumble upon a secret kept for thousands of years. But Daniel thinks he knows what this discovery means, which is something he does not want his friends to know. But can this secret be kept from the rest of the world? Or will this lead to the unveiling of the true nature of the omega? 

After Delvin Kish takes over Fort Ares, the vampires’ largest military base, he believes that Daniel is now safe. But new information reveals that the real threat is not the vampires, but someone closer and more powerful; and that in order for him to protect Daniel, Delvin has to learn to accept defeat.

This second book of the Omega Curse continues the adventure of Daniel and Delvin in the world shrouded in myths. As the truths start to unravel, they will face the greatest challenge that shakes the very foundation of their bond. One of them will have to make a sacrifice to save the other.

This is an m/m supernatural/suspense romance with HFN/HEA ending and is set in alpha/omega universe.



Title: Fur and a Badge
Series(To Protect and Serve Book 1)
Author(s): Caitlin Ricci, AJ Marcus
Length: 113 pages
Publisher: eXtasy Books (May 5, 2017)

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Shifter / Gay /

Notes:

Blurb: Angel is nothing like his name implies. Since he was thirteen he's been in one of the toughest gangs in Denver, slowly rising through the ranks, and now he has the chance to become an enforcer. Along with his best friend, he's willing to take that plunge. But what he doesn't realize is that the deep dark secret in the gang is that every one of the enforcers is a werewolf. When he's thrown in with a feral, abused werewolf, and bitten, he doesn't recover well. He's left for dead by the people he thought were his family. 

Quintero is on the hunt for his brother, who was captured a year before. Finding Angel, half dead and in the middle of his change, is the closest he's ever come to finding his brother. Angel has all the information this werewolf needs, but Quintero has to help him through the change first. With Angel barely alive, and the trail rapidly growing cold, Quintero is running out of time to save his brother before the gang destroys him for good.



Title: Chaos Awakens
Series: Dragon's of the Nether, 1
Author(s): Megg Jensen
Length: 398 pages
Publisher: 80 Pages, Inc (February 14, 2017)

Genre: Epic Fantasy / Dragons / Orcs / 

Notes:

Blurb: For hundreds of years, the orcs and humans of Doros have shared an uneasy peace. It shatters in an instant with the botched assassination of a human priest in the orc capital. Hell bent on revenge, the humans take up arms as the orc monarchy crumbles from outside interference.

Now Tace, the unlucky assassin, is on the run. It's soon clear, however, that her mistake hasn't only precipitated a war. It's unleashed ancient powers, the stuff of legends and fireside tales—and not the cozy kind.

Tace has always worked solo, but to save Doros, she'll need to assemble the unlikeliest allies. Together, they'll unravel the mysteries of the orcs' cult of death, and in the process, Tace will come to question everything she's ever believed. Only one thing is certain: a great destiny awaits her—if she can live long enough to meet it.

Title: To Touch You
Series(Mates Collection Book 4)
Author(s): Cardeno C.
Length: 260 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Shifters / Vampires / Gay / 

Notes:

Blurb: “His name is Salvatore Rossi. He’s a vampire. And he’s my true mate.”

By not relying on anyone except himself, Salvatore Rossi escaped a dead-end existence and reached the height of corporate success. But just when he has everything he always wanted, fate throws Salvatore a challenge he can’t solve alone and a young wolf shifter comes to his rescue.

Since childhood, Yoram Smith’s family was certain he would grow to become Alpha and save their beloved pack from its slow demise. When the time comes for a new leader, Yoram is forced to juggle his duty to care for a splintering pack with his duty to care for an absent mate, and his own strength suffers.


Being turned into a vampire didn’t alter Salvatore’s life philosophy: if you don’t rely on anyone, nobody can let you down. But when the boy who saved his life becomes a man who needs his help, the icy vampire must find his humanity.



Title: Barloc
Series:
Author(s): EL Esch
Length: 112 pages
Publisher: Loose Id LLC (May 9, 2017)

Genre: Dystopia / Gay / 

Notes:

Blurb: Through blurry eyes, Noah Barloc stares out at a world torn asunder by chaos and war. He’s been wandering in it far too long, alone and starving. He slumps down beside the rubble of some building, prepared to accept the end. The shadowy figure of a man appears on the horizon right before Noah's world goes dark. Noah awakens in this man’s home, and learns the world is not so broken as he thought. Mankind has built cities underground and is thriving. Noah looks to his savior, Ban Reed, for guidance in this new world.

Ban is a hardened survivor of the Last War. He makes his living building bionic limbs for other survivors who, like him, lost limbs to the War, and hides his true, caring nature behind a cold, sarcastic facade. But for reasons unknown to Noah and Ban's friends, Ban invites Noah into his home to recuperate, and then teaches Noah the trade of building exceptional bionics so that he can support himself.

A recent bad breakup turns Ban from a one-man show into a loose cannon that brings home a new sexual partner every night. Noah has come to care for Ban, to see past his cold exterior into that warm, caramel center. Noah can’t stand hearing the sounds of Ban's nightly sexual romps, and can't help wondering why Ban refuses him when he’s the one willing to give Ban the love and devotion he knows deep down that Ban wants.



Title: One You Can't Forget
Series(Hades' Spawn Motorcycle Club Series Book 1)
Author(s): Lexy Timms
Length: 162 pages
Publisher: Dark Shadow Publishing (July 23, 2015)

Genre: MC Romance

Notes: It's free so I thought I'd give it try and its also on audible

Blurb: Emily Rose Dougherty is a good Catholic girl from mythical Walkerville, CT. She had somehow managed to get herself into a heap trouble with the law, all because an ex-boyfriend has decided to make things difficult.

Luke “Spade” Wade owns a Motorcycle repair shop and is the Road Captian for Hades' Spawn MC. He’s shocked when he reads in the paper that his old high school flame has been arrested. She’s always been the one he couldn’t forget.

Will destiny let them find each other again? Or what happens in the past, best left for the history books?



Title: Slumberscythe
Series: Outre War, 1
Author(s): Vance Bastian
Length: 274 pages
Publisher: Rogue Ravens Publishing (October 8, 2014)

Genre: Non-Romantic / Urban Fantasy / Gay Protag /

Notes:

Blurb: After a series of dreams where he relives a female espionage agent’s 1972 missions, slightly overweight, slightly narcoleptic, slightly middle-aged, chronically single and gay James is shocked to learn the shadowy events really occurred. When operatives with dream-related powers show up in his life looking for him, he needs to find someone who can teach him to use his bloodline’s supernatural abilities.

His strange dreams lead him to unlikely help – a young reaper who fancies herself a Valkyrie. Halldora’s a closeted gamer-chick who grew up in the half-hidden world of the Outré. She’ll show him how to survive if she can get over her own baggage.

With a little luck, and a lot of help, James might just figure everything out.

Right after he gets these Sandman agents off his tail.


Title: Dim Sum Asylum
Series:
Author(s): Rhys Ford
Length:
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (June 9, 2017)

Genre: Romance / Urban Fantasy / Gay / 

Notes:

Blurb: Welcome to Dim Sum Asylum: a San Francisco where it’s a ho-hum kind of case when a cop has to chase down an enchanted two-foot-tall shrine god statue with an impressive Fu Manchu mustache that's running around Chinatown, trolling sex magic and chaos in its wake.

Senior Inspector Roku MacCormick of the Chinatown Arcane Crimes Division faces a pile of challenges far beyond his human-faerie heritage, snarling dragons guarding C-Town’s multiple gates, and exploding noodle factories. After a case goes sideways, Roku is saddled with Trent Leonard, a new partner he can’t trust, to add to the crime syndicate family he doesn’t want and a spell-casting serial killer he desperately needs to find.

While Roku would rather stay home with Bob the Cat and whiskey himself to sleep, he puts on his badge and gun every day, determined to serve and protect the city he loves. When Chinatown’s dark mystical underworld makes his life hell and the case turns deadly, Trent guards Roku’s back and, if Trent can be believed, his heart... even if from what Roku can see, Trent is as dangerous as the monsters and criminals they’re sworn to bring down.



Title: Three Shots
Series:
Author(s): Brigham Vaughn
Length: 94 pages
Publisher: Two Peninsulas Press (January 31, 2017)

Genre: Romance / Contemporary / Poly / Bisexual / 

Notes:

Blurb: Reeve Jenkins is an amateur musician playing in a dive bar. Grant McGuire is a man drowning his sorrows in beer after a painful breakup. When Reeve charms a reluctant Grant into coming home with him, they begin a three-year friendship with some very nice benefits. 

But when the two gorgeous men walk into Hawk Point Tavern—the bar Rachael Bradford owns—one evening and greet each other with a kiss, it sets off a chain of events that leads to a steamy night and maybe something more for the trio.



Title: Wild Ride 
Series:
Author(s):  Preston Walker
Length: 277 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Gay / 

Notes:

Blurb: Paramedic Bo Everett has seen his fair share of tragic accidents. Treating a motorcycle accident is par for the course. But when he encounters the broken and injured wolf shifter, Ryker Hill, everything he's ever known changes. 

Alpha Ryker Hill is fighting for his life, and now he has more reason to fight like Hell. After all, he recognizes the sexy paramedic as his mate, and he isn't about to let him get away.

Bo has a lot to teach Ryker--in out and of the bedroom. But Ryker's hiding something---something that just might destroy everything these two rugged men have built. Can Bo help Ryker reconcile his past for a chance at a family and future together?

Get ready for a Wild Ride in this 50,000-word steamy gay paranormal romance. As the two men butt heads, the alpha and the omega fall deeper in love. Can you hang on?



Title: Demon Leap
Series: The Specials, 1
Author(s): Tricia Owens
Length: 204 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Thriller / Magical Realism / 

Notes:

BlurbWhat if everything you've been told is a lie?

Fifteen years ago the war demolished Arrow's family. Lied to and betrayed, she's driven to shatter the conspiracy concealing how her parents and thousands of others died. But to go up against the powerful government she'll need to align herself with the strangest and most dangerous criminals in Victory City: the Specials.


They are not what they seem...

They are magic misfits and criminals, recruited and blackmailed to fill ordinary positions within the Sinistera Hotel. But for those who are greedy enough--or desperate like Arrow--there are opportunities to earn big money doing illegal magic jobs. The danger and the risks are high. Magic assassination, kidnapping, assault--there's a good chance Arrow and the others could be killed or wish they had been. But though the Specials each have agendas of their own, they are determined to rewrite history...if they can survive that long.


Title: Skim Blood & Savage Verse
Series(Offbeat Crimes Book 3)
Author(s): Angel Martinez
Length: 186 pages
Publisher: Pride Publishing

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / 

Notes:

Blurb: Words damage more than just feelings as Carrington hunts feral books menacing the city.

When a ferocious book attacks Carrington at his own birthday party, he believes it’s an isolated incident. But similar books soon pop up all over town, menacing innocent people with harsh bits of poetry and blank verse that deliver damaging physical blows. It’s a frustrating case with too many variables and not enough answers, and the stakes go up with each attack.

With the help of his misfit squad mates at the 77th and the public library’s Rare Books Department, the missing pieces decrease but not Carrington’s vexations. His commanding officer rakes him over the coals at the beginning of every shift. His police partner has lost patience with what she sees as his delusional relationship choices and his inability to pick the right man in a vast field of two. City Hall demands that the books be stopped immediately. It’s enough to put a nutritionally challenged vampire off his skim blood.



TitleCry Wolf
SeriesUnderwood District, 1
Author(s): Greta Stone
Length: 408 pages
Publisher: Skeleton Key Publishing (April 9, 2017)

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Gay / 

Notes:

Blurb: Experience the timeless story of friendship, love, and loss...

Cry Wolf is the first installment in a series of classic literature, fairy tales, and folklore retellings with a dark, realistic twist. What are you waiting for? Join the hunt.

"EVERYTHING YOU KNOW IS A LIE."

Peter is a kitsune. Chaos follows him wherever he goes. Good intentions, bad intentions---it doesn't matter. Even mimicking the howl of a friend he hasn't seen in over a decade turns out to have disastrous consequences.

The wolf doesn't have a name. For now, he goes by Luca. He has no past, and as an escaped slave, if he can't stay hidden in the shadows, he'll have no future. When someone steals his howl, he's drawn to investigate, and ends up saddled with a mouthy fox who insists they used to be friends once upon a time.

Petty problems and a dubious reunion are pushed aside the longer they're stranded together. The Underwood is a dangerous place.

They have two choices: work together or die.


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Checking In #amwriting #standalone #SumeriasSons

I thought I would check in because I didn't put together my usual "What's on the Reading Radar" Saturday post. I've been buried with world building on a standalone for Sumeria's Sons. (Those who love the series will be happy about that after they read Releasing Chaos-which isn't out yet. Sorry. No news on that yet.)

If you've followed me on social media or even here on the blog, you know that I have struggled the last few months. I'm still working on Bespoken but the going is very slow. (Snail's pace.) Additionally, I needed to finish a book I gave a verbal commitment on for a collaboration series (Lucky Charm - Have Human Will Travel). I stalled on that a few weeks back. Then I switched over to Salvaging Toby's Heart which I planned on expanding, but again... stalled. Nothing seemed to be working for me.

Last year when I finished Releasing Chaos I knew that I would need to write another book in that world to give a certain character a HEA. I had a vague idea of what I wanted to do with them but nothing concrete until two weeks ago when a plot came to me. And then the idea took off like a shot. You have NO IDEA how relieved I was to have some enthusiasm about a writing project. I talked and talked and talked until I'm sure my husband wanted to get out the duct tape and then I talked some more. I couldn't shut up and it was a wonderful feeling.



I even drew up a map which I'll end up commissioning once I make sure all the place names are firm. 

Then yesterday I finished with the world building and I'm pretty sure the plot is solid. 

Today, I'm going to start writing the story...

I'm really nervous because the last three projects have come to a standstill. Last night I didn't do myself any favors though. I needed a refresher on the end of Releasing Chaos and while reading I had this moment of, "Holy Shit This Really Stinks." And I started editing only to remind myself that it was out in the professional editing world somewhere (with the editor going, "wow this stinks," too.). So I'm saving my self-disgust for when it is returned to me. It's probably why I only slept for five hours. I woke up still thinking over the stinky manuscript.

But today I'm going to try to ignore what I saw last night and start on the standalone. Wish me luck. I'll probably going to need it.


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

What's On The Reading Radar: Menage Edition #WishList #TBR

What am I doing? I wish I could say. I'm working on a super-secret project and I'm dying to talk about it but I can't. Anything I say will give spoilers away, so I'm only talking to the husband. I'm sure he wishes I'd shut up already. :)

For the reading side, I've had a heck of a time finding fantasy/paranormal/sci-fi in LGBT. I reverted to some of my old favorite authors like Patricia Briggs who have new books out since I last read them. I've also been sampling lots of new to me authors and I've just had a hard time connecting to any story. I went through something like this last fall when I read all of five books from August to the end of October. I don't know what's up but that doesn't mean I won't keep looking. 

Because I'm not finding a lot in the MM that is catching my eye, I do have a full menage folder. So I'll post those today. The poly romances will include all gender and sexual identities as well as pairings from MFM, MMM, MMF, FFM, and sometimes more. It's all good in my book. :) I put off doing this post because I was submerged in the secret project and loathed to do anything else all week. So there are only half the number I usually put up. Enjoy!

TitleHers to Captivate 
Series(Verdantia Book 5)
Author(s): Patricia A. Knight
Length: 210 pages
Publisher: Troll River Publication; 1 edition (November 14, 2015)

Genre: Romance / Sci-fi / Former Sex Slave / Miliatry / Bisexual / Poly / Romantic Suspense / Some BDSM content / 

Notes: I've posted a couple of the books from this series. It is a mix of MF and MMF. Each book follows a different people with political intrigue and action/adventure.

BlurbFreed after years as a sex slave, only a unique man could capture Angelica’s heart.

She never anticipated finding two.

Captain of the starship VNV Revertar, Magellan DeLan is immediately attracted to his priority passenger, the lovely, intelligent Doctor Angelica Giverny. Mage plans a careful pursuit of the petite beauty when they arrive in port, but landfall brings the unexpected.

Face-to-face with a man he once worshipped, Mage yearns to say yes when Tristan DeHelios blatantly declares his dishonorable intentions, but Mage doesn't trust his heart to withstand the fallout. This man's rejection had devastated him years before.

For Angelica, having Tristan DeHelios as her bodyguard is enticing. When he pursues her, too, her emotions seethe and tangle. How can she chose between the honorable and gorgeous starship captain and a rogue whose carnal dominance challenges and provokes her at every turn?

If the alien assassins stalking Angelica succeed, her answer will be moot.


Title: Talking in Code
Series:
Author(s): Ariel Tachna
Length: 256 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Genre: Romance / Contemporary / Poly / Sounds Angsty / Military / Hurt-Comfort / 

Notes:

Blurb: Some things crumble under pressure. Others are tempered by it instead. For three former soldiers, a tragedy might be the catalyst that binds them together—stronger than ever.

Richard Horn and Timothy Davenport met in the SEALs twenty years ago and have been lovers ever since. Now running their own paramilitary organization, Strike Force Omega, they work in the shadows to protect their country and its people. When Tim falls for Eric Newton, a deadly sniper and strategist on their team, Richard accepts that Tim’s heart is big enough for two men. He respects, admires, and even desires Eric enough to accept him into their relationship—and their bed—but he’s never been fully a part of what Eric and Tim share.

Then Eric is captured by terrorists and Tim is gravely injured in an op gone wrong, bringing Richard’s world crashing down around his ears. Even if he gets his men out alive, Eric must face the aftermath of months of physical and psychological torture—and without Tim to lean on, Eric’s PTSD is tearing him apart. Richard has to figure out the third leg of their triangle fast, or Tim won’t have a life to come back to.



Title: Take What You Want
Series: The Rock Gods, 2
Author(s): Ann Lister
Length: 456 pages
Publisher: SleighFarm Publishing Group (October 26, 2013)
Genre: Romance / Contemporary / Rock & Roll / Bisexual / Poly / 

Notes: With the exception of this book, the series is M/M and seems to be well liked. 

Blurb: Mega rock star, Alex “Zander” Metcalf is burned out after nearly two years touring with his band, as well as emotionally drained after his sexual preferences were exposed by the media. He is ready for a long sabbatical – alone, and retreats to the east coast island of Martha's Vineyard; leasing an oceanside estate.

Alex seeks the quiet lifestyle of a recluse to write new material for his band, only to meet the handsome estate manager, Chase, and his gorgeous fiancée, Danni, living in the guest house on his property. Alex's hope of solitude is soon forgotten when he discovers Chase has a repressed bi-sexual side that is aching to surface and Alex is more than happy to help him explore it.

What neither Alex or Chase expects is the emotional power of their chemistry expanding to involve the three of them when Danni becomes entangled in their passion. Alex believes he has finally found his perfect menage relationship with Chase and Danni.

Sometimes two isn't enough and it takes three to complete the union of a fulfilled love. But, will their new relationship be strong enough to survive when real life wants to punish them for their unconventional love? And, can they be confident in the strength of their love to take the 'happily ever after' they can only give each other?



Title: Hers to Command
Series(Cyborg Sizzle Book 8)
Author(s): Cynthia Sax
Length: 197 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Romance / Sci-Fi / Poly / Bisexual / BBW / Genetic Manipulation / 

Notes: I've read and enjoyed the first couple books of this series. Even though each book focus's on a new people there are returning characters and an overarching plot line. So these can't be read as standalones.

Blurb: Three Battered Hearts. One Perfect Love

Ace and Thrasher share a special bond. They’ve never acknowledged that connection and have never fully acted on it. The Humanoid Alliance kill cyborg males like them, deeming the warriors to be defective. Now that Ace and Thrasher have escaped, they don’t trust the cyborg council and their brethren to react any differently. Physical love is too risky for them to consider.

Until they meet her.

Carys is the Commander of a Rebel Battle Station. She has dedicated her lifespan to seeking vengeance against the Humanoid Alliance and the cyborgs who killed her daughter. On her battle station, she makes the rules, and if she wants to kiss, touch, and pleasure two mysterious warriors, she will. Nothing, not even enemy warships and a mass cyborg rebellion, can stop her.

In the midst of a war, enemies can become lovers and loyalties can change in a moment. Can a forbidden relationship between two cautious cyborgs and one unbending human Commander survive?

Hers To Command is Book 8 in the Cyborg Sizzle series.
Due to the number of returning characters in this story, you’ll enjoy Hers To Command more if you’ve read the other stories first.



Title: Reginald Bones 3
Series:
Author(s): Lucian Bane
Length: 270 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Romance / Contemporary / Dark Paranormal / Unusual Poly / Action-Adventure / Suspense-Thriller /

Notes: From what I understand this is a trilogy about a man possessed (which may or may not be a mental illness) and the woman they fall in love with. It's what I would consider dark urban fantasy. It's trippy.

Blurb: What happens when your boyfriend loves you but his split personality hates you? 

For a while, it seemed like Winter, Bones and Reginald might be able to strike a balance with their strange relationship. But having sex with Reginald while Bones pretended not to be there is harder than they imagined--especially for Bones who is inadvertently developing chemistry every time his other personality makes love to her.

But when that chemistry gets out of hand, Reginald--who Bones considers his brother-- suddenly disappears, leaving Bones devastated and hating Winter for causing it.

Enter the X Factor--
With Reginald missing, the imbalance in Bones' mind takes yet another turn, allowing X out to play--the part of him who knows things about Bones that even Bones doesn't.

Stuck in Bones subconscious, X is only able to live when Bones sleeps. But X has too much revenge to "Execute" and not enough time in his 4 hour window to work. But with Reginald gone, X finds he has more power, and strikes a deal with Pretty Winter.

Wanting only to fix what she broke and put Reggie and Bones back together, Winter agrees, even if she has to play the whore to do it. But that'll damn well change when Bones figures out two things--that he's falling for Winter-- and that X exists.



Title: Claimed by the Kings
Series:
Author(s): Loki Renard
Length: 115 pages
Publisher: Stormy Night Publications (December 1, 2016)

Genre: Romance / Historical / Menage / MFM / Spanking / 

Notes:

Blurb: After her homeland is conquered by two powerful kings, eighteen-year-old Princess Elizabeth of Ammerdale finds herself taken captive in her own castle. Rather than fight over her, the two rulers decide to form an alliance and claim Elizabeth as their shared bride, but they quickly discover that the beautiful maiden will need to be tamed.

Though they have little else in common, the sophisticated Milo Lionheart and the fierce warrior Ragnar are united by their willingness to strip Elizabeth bare and spank her soundly as often as necessary to teach her obedience. Despite her blushing protests, the stern dominance of her handsome husbands arouses the young princess deeply, and soon she is begging for more as their masterful lovemaking brings her to one shattering climax after another.

Not everyone in Ammerdale is happy with the match, however, and when a treacherous foe seeks to seize the throne for himself it puts the growing bond between Elizabeth, Milo, and Ragnar to the test. Will the two kings stand together to protect their realm and their woman?



Title: Intense Pleasure
Series(Bound Hearts)
Author(s): Lora Leigh
Length: 320 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (January 3, 2017)

Genre: Erotic Romance / Contemporary / Twin Brothers / Menage / Bodyguards / Suspense /

Notes: This series can be read as a standalone.

Blurb: The brand new, never-before-published novel in #1 New York Times bestseller Lora Leigh's deliciously sexy Bound Hearts series, where one woman must accept--or reject--the love of a lifetime.

TOO HOT TO HANDLE


Her name is Summer, as beautiful and occasionally fierce as her name suggests. Her past has just come back to haunt her, and suddenly she’s not sure who she can trust. Her longtime confidantes Falcone and Raeg seem to have Summer’s best interests at heart. . .but it’s clear that their desire for her still burns between them. Can they find a way to keep Summer safe—or will a bitter rivalry stand in their way?

Falcone and Raeg need to work together, now more than ever, if they intend to protect Summer from an old enemy who knows her dangerous secret. When Summer’s identity as a sweet, Southern socialite gets out, the two men must find a way to draw out the ruthless assassin on her trail. . .and keep their illicit romance with her under wraps. But some passions are so intense they can’t remain hidden. What are Falcone and Raeg willing to risk for the woman they both crave like no other, in Intense Pleasure, the next Bound Hearts novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Lora Leigh.



Title: The King's Harem
Series: Tales of Tavamba, 1
Author(s): Megan Derr
Length: 260 pages
Publisher: LT3 Press

Genre: Romance / Fantasy / Bisexual / Gay / Poly / Royalty / 

Notes: This is the only series by Derr that I haven't read... shocker. I have all of them. :)

Blurb: The country of Tavamara is renowned for its famous Market, its decadent wines, the harsh climate in which it manages to flourish. It is also well known for the harems kept by the royal family. King Shahjahan's harem is especially infamous, for his concubines are comprised of an unusual, many say dangerous, assortment...

This volume also contains three additional stories.

The Jewel of Tavamara
Fahima has always been the lesser sister: younger, plainer, too smart and independent. Then her sister commits the ultimate taboo, putting their lives in danger. In order to save her family, Fahima must take her place, though she is painfully aware Shahjahan will never see her as more than a paltry substitute...

Knight to Rook
Displaced by war, Rook makes a home in the Desert where his cousin Cordelia has become Princess. A famous, highly-regarded strategist back home, in the Desert he is regarded as useless and held in contempt for his inability to fight. Adrift and alone, he can only watch and wait for a chance to prove he belongs amongst the Sons of the Sands.

Everything You Need
Though he left the Desert years ago and is set to become the next Advisor to the King of Tavamara, Ikram spends most of his days feeling out of place, living a life of civility and calm that is nothing like the Desert he left behind. Eager to get away from the palace for a time, he braves the famous Market...



Title: The Dark Princes
Series: The Ravager Chronicles, 2
Author(s): Sara Page
Length: 272 pages
Publisher: Dirty Nothings Publishing (February 1, 2016)

Genre: Romance / Sci-Fi / Menage / MFM / 

Notes: The first book in this series is MF ans these two volumes are connected. I've started it and about half way through.  It's told in 1st person present tense.

Blurb: I'm alive.

I survived the wilds of that remote planet I crashed into, and I've been trying to get to know my new alien lover before I return home and introduce him to my father. Yeah, so not looking forward to that introduction but at least I'm not knocked up... yet.

Everything is going great until we intercept a transmission from my home planet. Apparently my jerk of a stepbrother has been telling everyone I'm dead, and they believe it. There's been a funeral for me and everything.

So now it's a race home to prove to everyone I'm still alive and breathing before they pass on my crown and title to the next girl in the line of succession.

And if that's not enough on my plate, another alien has decided to step forward and he's claiming I'm his, like we're fated or something. Ha! And I don't even like the guy, seriously can not even stand him.

And you'd think my current alien lover would be mad... But no, he insists on bringing the other alien guy along because he's convinced I need the extra protection.

One Ravager? I think I can handle it.

But two sexy red-eyed purple space demons? Two might prove to be too much for this princess...


Title: Scorching Desire
Series: Trinity Masters, 3
Author(s): Mari Carr, Lila Dubois
Length: 264 pages
Publisher:

Genre: Romance / Paranormal / Poly / Bisexual? / 

Notes: There are 8 books in this trinity series.

Blurb: A reformed spy. A respectable lawyer. A renowned playboy.

When Damon Corso is blackmailed it’s not just his career that’s in jeopardy, but the existence of the Trinity Masters–America’s oldest and most powerful secret society. He and fellow member Marco Polin, a world famous playboy musician, enjoy sharing women, a secret that until now they’ve kept quiet.

Tasha Kasharin, the reformed spy sent to help them, knows this is more than simple blackmail. Marco and Damon’s lives are in danger. She ignores her increasingly vivid fantasies about being part of a trinity with them until their investigation is interrupted by the Grand Master, who calls them to the altar and binds them in a ménage marriage.

The men must trust their futures to the unexpectedly innocent woman who’s now their wife, while dealing with the change in their own relationship, and the complicated feelings that come with it. Blackmail escalates to violence, and they’ll have to trust and accept one another if they’re going to survive.



Thank you for stopping by and reading!!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Matching a WereAnimal with an Assassin

Cape Buffalo
What am I doing? 

Funny thing, that. I was working on the world building details for Salvaging Toby's Heart since I wanted to expand it and possibly rewrite some sections. Once I finished with the details and sat down to write... I got nothing. I was quite disappointed but on the upside, when I am ready to dive into that story I don't have any leg work to catch up on.


Cassowary
So I looked at what else I had available. There are a slew of stories that are waiting for me and nothing held my attention. I quit the day early and proceeded to thumb through books, attempting to read. Again, nothing held my interest and I was beginning to wonder if I was a bit burned out. Perhaps I pushed to write too soon after Molly's passing and I'm back to square one of being emotionally burned out.


Gila Monster
Tuesday night, I was disgruntled with a book I was listening to (forced seduction makes me crazy) and I was just going to give up and go to bed when I had a thought, which lead to another thought (surprising, right? LOL) The ideas were about a super-secret project that I wanted to write but didn't have a good plot for my special character. 


Honey Badger



Jackal
Happily, Wednesday was a better day. I'm still world building on the super-secret project and thinking through issues with the plot but it's better than being uninterested in anything, you know? I'm hoping that this will segue into me writing the story but I'm not going to fall into a hole if it doesn't. I'll just pick another storyline and start world building again.


Hyena
Until then, I have a question for the super-secret project I'm working on. I asked in my FaceBook Group for ideas for a beast. If a shifter lost their inner animal and had the chance to get a new animal/beast what are some ideas. There were two stipulations, 1) It needs to be non-mainstream, unusual and deadly. No wolf/cat/bear. 2) Something that would pair perfectly with an assassin.


Mongoose
I've listed here the suggestions as well as attached some pictures of the animals/beasts that are being considered. They are all awesome. I'm itching to find uses for all of them but I have to pick only one from so many great choices. :)

1. Spider - I'm not going to post a picture of a spider. Too many people have a phobia or have issues with these little guys. Honestly, as wereanimal for an assassin I think a spider would be awesome. What better way to make the bad guy/gal piss their pants, you know? Even though I've thought of a way to work such a creature in perfectly, I think that there being a werespider would chase off more readers than draw them in, so Mr. Spider has been placed to the side.


Silverback Gorilla
2. Least Weasel and Mongoose, I think I'm going to have these two as domesticated animals in this fantasy world that doesn't have cats and dogs. 

3. Alligator, Falcon, Owl, Unicorn, Kangaroo, Rhino, Cassowary, Cape Buffalo, Gila Monster, Poison Dart Frog are creatures that I am setting off to the side for now. They are all deadly (I'm actually afraid of Kangaroos) but they would have a hard time fitting into this fantasy world I'm creating or it would be hard to write them in a light that would cause other characters to tremble.


Komodo Dragon
5. Tasmanian Tiger - This is one I can't used because I based many of Dargon's (The Valespian Pact) characteristics on the animal.

4. Silverback Gorilla - Strong, deadly, intimidating, beautiful. This one is among those I'm considering.


Wolverine
5. Hyena, Jackal, Wolverine, Tasmanian Devil, and Honey Badger are all different kinds of predators and are still being considered. The draw is that they are in many ways familiar, being furred and four-legged, but they also have a range of differences that would add to any story they are used in.


Roc
6. One suggestion was for an Eagle and my mind immediately went to a Roc. It is a mythological bird of prey. In the 13th century, Marco Polo was quoted as saying "It was for all the world like an eagle, but one indeed of enormous size; so big in fact that its quills were twelve paces long and thick in proportion. And it is so strong that it will seize an elephant in its talons and carry him high into the air and drop him so that he is smashed to pieces; having so killed him, the bird swoops down on him and eats him at leisure."


Kutabe
7. Kutabe - a Japanese guardian whose image is depicted on protective amulets. The appearance is "bovine or monstrous felid creature with nine eyes and six horns, arranged in sets of three and two on both its flanks and its man-like face. It is also commonly depicted as having the body of a lion and eight eyes, known for having a horn or multiple horns on their heads." The number of eyes varies but the Kutabe is intelligent, well read, and understands human speech.


8. A Chupacabra is considered a folklore in parts of the Americans. It's rumored to have a habit of attacking livestock, especially goats, and drinking their blood. It's reportedly the size of a small bear, with a row of spines reaching from the neck to the base of the tail. Myth or not, this is a fearsome creature and just the depiction alone would made some characters tremble. :)


9. Manticore is another Persian myth, similar to the Egyptian sphinx. It has the body of a lion, a human head with multiple rows of sharp teeth, and the tail of a scorpion that shoots venomous spines. Some stories adds wings or horns, sometimes both. With this one, there would be a little more room to play if I wanted to add features onto the manticore and customize it's abilities. Being able to tailor the final creature is a big draw.

10. The Questing Beast. I know the bare minimum about King Arthur legends. That story was so popular when I was growing up that everywhere I turned it was there. I
Questing Beast
ended up avoiding the story like the plague. I would have overlooked the suggestion by the husband because I thought he made up the name, Questing Beast. Last night he brought it up and filled me in on the lore. The beast came from the medieval understanding about tales of giraffes, which is fascinating, but oddly the depiction of the Questing Beast is quite ferocious. Since there is little known about it, I could twist its lore or add some of my own which would be awesome.



Lanomia
11. Lanomia is something that I could definitely roll with. It is a highly venomous caterpillar. I could give this creature greater size and speed but there is an additional thing to consider. My shifter could have two shifted forms. This one where he could run on the ground, huge and unstoppable or in the second mothlike form where he could fly. That second form could be deadly as well but also beautiful and alluring.


Pabilsag
12. Pabilsag is a Babylonian man-beast where he is both a creature and a god. His constellation is Sagittarius. He has the tail and multicolored legs of a scorpion, his lower body is that of a bull, and from the waist up he is a man. He's like a centaur, but not. Again, there isn't much on his background and what he's capable of or if he had any weaknesses. It would be interesting to insert something like him into the story so I'm still holding onto him.


13. Hellhound - I came up with this one this morning. This is either an evil creature or simply misunderstood. They are found in mythologies around the world. They are associated to death in many ways. From it's stare to guardian of the land of the dead to hunting lost souls there are a variety of aspects to choose from. It is also associated with fire so may have magical abilities.


14. Kelpie - This is a creature that can be beautiful but deadly. I'm not sure about the water aspect, though it is something that comes to play in the story. The downside is this creature does have a set of rules that I'd need to follow, hence my worry about the water. I'm on the fence about this one and it was my own suggestion!! LOL!


15. Basilisk - There were numerous suggestions for different snakes. Black Mombas, Boomslang, Feathered Serpent, and a variety of other snakes ended up on the list. I added the basilisk because in Greek tradition/mythology it is reputed to be the king of all serpents. It has a crown-shaped crest, has poisonous breath and a killing stare. Some say that it leaves behind a venom trail. In myth, these creatures can either be humongous or only a foot long, with or without four legs.

And that is all of them. It's a hard list to choose from. What do you think? Which creature/beast would you choose to be a shifter?

Before I leave, if you want to follow this secret project, here's the Pinterest board I'm building for it. :-D


Thank you for stopping by and reading!!