Tag Archives: book release

who’s excited… ??? #RRBC

Block Party 2016 banner

the month is almost over, the party is winding down, but that will never stop us, we writers, bloggers; the great wordage crowd…

and tomorrow….. we get to sit in Jazz as he interviews Marin… he is a little freaked out, having never met a princess before, especially not one with an out of control electrical gift… lol… since the party bus stopped here (my author site) earlier in the month, Marin’s interview will be over on my book site finderskeepersseries.com … hope to see y’all there…

and for today’s fun and games, we have three stops to keep the party going… wooo who… remember to leave a comment at each stop…

Maretha Botha

DAILY GIVEAWAYS: 

(3) Set of 3 black and white paperbacks of “FAUNA PARK TALES”;

??? Brenda Taylor ???

DAILY GIVEAWAYS: 

  • (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card,
  • (1) ebook copy of a “HIGHLAND PEARL,” and an ebook copy of a “HIGHLAND RUBY”;

 Joy Nwosu Lo-Bamijoko

DAILY GIVEAWAYS: 

  • (1) $10 Amazon Gift Card,
  • (1) $10 ITunes Gift Card, (
  • 1) $10 Starbuck’s Gift Card,
  • (2) Ebook copies of “LEGEND OF THE WALKING DEAD”;

It looks like Brenda Taylor’s link is missing… guess that means there are only two stops today, but wow… they both look great… go check them out… and I will see y’all tomorrow… happy wordage, tracey

Plum Proud :P

Between my plum tree, my pregnant cousin, and two celebrations, my first week in July has been exhaustingly fun… man, oh man… I could use a few days of sleep (if my mind would just shut down long enough) to recharge…

for the last three years, I’ve been excited to get a dozen (if that) plums from my tree… but this year, omg peeps… we have dozens upon dozens of plums… there are soo many that I have been pawning them off on family, friends, and the occasional stranger… lol… the two plum tree (total accident, I didn’t mean to buy all plum) in the back yard are too young to produce any fruit, but once they grow up a bit we are gonna be overwhelmed by the tasty little treats…

as for my prego cuz… she had her baby shower, and made out like a bandit… lots of goodies for the next generation… if only she would let us know what the sex is… sigh… but mom really wants it to be a girl… I mean, really-really wants a girl… lol… so most of the gifts from us were feminine… which opened the door for sexually confused baby-boy jokes… yep… I am soooo not above a few ‘overly metro-sexual jibes’… I also announced to the room that the card we gave to her husband was just for him, for a job well done… lol… really it was the thousand dollars that mom foolishly promised the first person to give her a grandbaby… (me or one of my two cousins)…

since the baby’s sex was unknown, the party was decorated in team spirit colors… not that any of us *cuz included* attend/attended Louisville… but cuz and her hubby are die hard fans… you just know she is brain washing her young while they are still in the womb… lol

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and finally, I spend the first week celebrating my grans birthday with some yummy KFC… and laughing with friends and family at my book party… the book celebration had a nice turn out, but sadly, I threw the bash while a handful of peeps were off sunning at the beach… still… both parties were an excellent way to start off the month…

all right… that’s it for now… happy wordage peeps…

Southern Discoveries_ebook (1)
B2 Finder’s Keepers

 

oh yeah…and don’t forget to sign up for my Book Newsletter … just head up to the Newsletter link at the top of the page to be sure to get all Book updates… so far there are books one and two (Shocking Finds & Southern Discoveries) in the Finder’s Keepers Series… and soon … book one in the Skymann Series… woo who… later, Tracey…

Pre-Release… Get your copy for FREE

Southern Discoveries_ebook (1)

After two nights in a row, staying up to the wee hours of the morning, and growling at my computer as I fought to figure out how to format Southern Discoveries into an ebook, the pain, sweet, and swearing finally paid off…. muhahaahahahahaha…. I did it… take that MS….

Okay, so thanks to Pronoun.com it was pretty easy… the difficult part had more to do with my uncooperative brain than my formatting task…

Sooooooo….. about three in the morning last night, I looked at my screen and realized I was ready to hit the publish button… the ebook version was ready to go… now I only had to wait for the woman that created my book covers to finish with the spine and back cover so that I could set up the paperback format on createspace.com … and this left me with an opportunity that I hadn’t thought of before…

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For the next week, I am offering FREE ecopies to anyone willing to leave a review… (Reviews really are the devil to get, but oh so important) … just drop me a line and I will make sure that you get your copy … even if it means I have to swear at my computer some more… 😛 … I already have the Mobi & Epub versions, and will have the PDF version later today…

And truthfully, it would be an enormous help if y’all could stop in at amazon, goodreads, or one of the other retailers, blogs, etc and drop a line or two one what you thought of Southern Discoveries… as the pre-order links go up, I will post them so that you know where to find the book in order to give a review, or you can wait until after it is out, and easy to find…

Most books are set up for pre-order months before the release date, but Southern Discoveries grew a mind of its own and took longer than I expected to finish… (and I might be a bit impatient) But its all good… because you guys get it now, and not months from now…. wooo whooo…

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and lastly, I decided to set up a newsletter… you can get Finder’s Keepers & Skymann (coming soon) series info delivered to your email… this email list will hopefully allow me to offer more pre-releases, monthly updates, and other book related goodies… just head HERE and leave your info…

I didn’t think I would need an email list, not when I could just use Facebook, Twitter, this blog, etc. to send out updates… but I’ve found that there are certain sites that ask you to use something along the lines of MailChimp …. sooo take a moment and sign up to get your Newsletter

happy wordage everyone, Tracey

Freebies – Bad Boys of the Night

here is a chance for you guys to win some freebies… Personally, I have read and love Jennifer Ashley… this looks like a wonderful chance to check out some wonderful authors… I know that a number of the other peeps participating in this blog barrage will also be giving away a chance to get this boxed set for free… this is definitely faint worthy 😛
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just scroll down to see the list of sites you can check out and possibly enter to win… for my part, I will be picking one of the random commenters… just go to the bottom of this post and comment (any type of comment will work)… for an eCopy of THIS, enter you comment between now and Feb. 29th… I will randomly pick a winner on March 1st…
Bad Boys of the Night Boxed Set Blog Barrage
Link to see more…

Bad Boys of the Night: Eight Sizzling Paranormal Romances Boxed Set is now available worldwide for a special introductory price of only $0.99!

This ebook boxed set features sizzling paranormal romances by eight New York Times and USA Today best-selling romance authors. Fulfil your darkest fantasies with alpha-male bad boys of the night in these stories about vampires, shifters, fallen angels, werewolves, demons, psychic warriors and ghosts.

Here’s more about this fantastic eight book boxed set, including an excerpt from one of the stories.

Bad Boys of the Night: Eight Sizzling Paranormal Romances is available from Amazon Kindle, Kobo Books, Barnes and Noble Nook, Apple iBooks stores and other retailers. Find the links to your preferred retailer at: http://www.felicityheaton.co.uk/bad-boys-of-the-night/

Bad Boys of the Night Boxed Set

Bad Boys of the Night: Eight Sizzling Paranormal Romances
By Jennifer Ashley, Erin Kellison, Laurie London, Colleen Gleason, Felicity Heaton, Bonnie Vanak, Caris Roane and Erin Quinn

Featuring…

Bad Wolf (Shifters Unbound) by Jennifer Ashley

Wolf Shifter Broderick is stuck looking after his three younger brothers and a Collar-less Shifter who is driving him crazy, but he’s putting up with them for Joanne, the human woman he wants to take as mate. When Broderick is captured, mistaken for a Guardian, it’s Joanne who figures out that hackers are after the Guardian Network, the database that holds the deep secrets of Shifters past and present.

Shadow Fall (Shadow series) by Erin Kellison

A man with all Custo’s sins isn’t cut out to be an angel. One moment he’s fleeing Heaven; the next, he’s waking up stark naked, called by a woman who’s afraid of the dark. Shadow gathers around Annabella as she performs, a magic that allows her to move between worlds. Her abilities attract a primeval wolf, and it stalks her relentlessly. Custo stops at nothing to keep her safe, and though danger proves seductive, they fight for redemption and love.

Warrior’s Heart (Iron Portal) by Laurie London

Librarian by day, Zara Kane is a thief by night, stealing artifacts that belong to her homeland. When she learns a man she once loved has been wrongly imprisoned, she uses her para-abilities to orchestrate a daring escape. Vince Crawford isn’t afraid of anything, but when the woman he’s never stopped loving and the son he never knew he had are threatened by a ruthless enemy, he will stop at nothing to keep them safe… even if it costs him his life.

The Vampire Voss by Colleen Gleason

In 19th Century London, vampires live alongside the uppercrust members of Society…
Even after centuries of lust, hedonism, and women, Voss, rarely finds himself bored. He is a rogue of the first order who loves nothing more than a warm woman, excellent vintage, and even a puzzling challenge to keep his mind active. But when one of his seemingly harmless manipulations sets him on the path to seduce the beautiful Miss Angelica Woodmore, things become a little less simple…a lot more passionate…and definitely more complicated.

Hunger (Vampires Realm Series) by Felicity Heaton

A vampire assassin hardened by centuries of service, Tor is a man of discipline and loyalty, never straying from his mission, and has purged all his weaknesses, including his emotions. But the moment he meets the broken, fiery female he is to escort to Oslo, something dangerous awakens in him, something possessive and powerful, and when he is pulled into a deadly game of cat and mouse with the man who betrayed her, Tor discovers he will do anything to protect the woman slowly claiming his heart and give her the vengeance she desires—even break all the rules.

The Mating Challenge (Werewolves of Montana) by Bonnie Vanak

Alpha werewolf and ranch owner Aiden Mitchell desires the curvy, vivacious Nikita Blakemore, alpha female of the Blakemore pack. He will have her as his mate and no other. To force her hand, Aiden maneuvers her into hosting a Mating Challenge, the ultimate warrior competition for werewolves, where males fight for the right to mate and breed with a female alpha. Fiercely protective of his future mate, Aiden will do anything to make her his own, even fight to the death…

Dark Flame (Flame Series) by Caris Roane

Committed to the rule of law, vampire Border Patrol Officer Robert Brannick falls hard for a beautiful fae woman who illegally seduces him in his dreams…

Diablo Springs, by Erin Quinn

When she escaped Diablo Springs years ago, Gracie Beck swore she’d never return. But all that changes on the night of her grandmother’s death when Diablo Springs lures Gracie’s teenage daughter to its treacherous border. Gracie races to the rescue—only to find herself trapped in the undercurrent of a hundred year old curse and the menacing spirits that still terrorize the town. She isn’t prepared to deal with Reilly Alexander—a man from her past who she’s never forgotten—at the same time. Reilly is determined to help Gracie and prove his to love to her, but they’ve come to a dangerous place where every lurking shadow should be feared…

Bad Boys of the Night: Eight Sizzling Paranormal Romances is available from Amazon Kindle, Kobo Books, Barnes and Noble Nook, Apple iBooks stores and other retailers. Find the links to your preferred retailer at: http://www.felicityheaton.co.uk/bad-boys-of-the-night/

EXCERPT FROM THE MATING CHALLENGE BY BONNIE VANAK

The two nude alpha werewolves fought to be the most dominant, the one to mate and breed with the female leader of the Blakemore pack.

Sounds of flesh smacking hard flesh echoed through the ballroom of the Blakemore Ranch as Richard Armador and Aiden Mitchell battled on the elegant parquet floor. Overhead two lead crystal chandeliers spilled golden light upon the sparring males.

As dictated by law, the men had removed their clothing to fight naked, to show they had no concealed weapons. The female alpha had the right to see the merchandise, so to speak. See exactly how much power and strength she’d be taking into her bed.

Perched on a gilded throne, Nia Blakemore watched the men fight. In this arena of blood and violence, hardened Lupine alpha warriors battled to lay claim to the female alpha’s lands, her pack, and her body. She felt like a tightly coiled spring, ready to snap with tension.

Alpha males from eight packs had been formally invited. Now the strongest two males remained. Of course one was Aiden. The fiend had been chasing her for years, warning her he’d eventually catch her and make her his.

He’d bought the mortgage on her ranch to force her into declaring this challenge. Bastard. If she hadn’t hosted the challenge, he could have foreclosed on her property.

And yet, as arrogant as Mitchell was, he still turned her on. Especially now.

Nia’s heart raced as the two men fought. She was their prize, and the males fought in the most primitive of ancient Lupine rites. Then the guilt set in. Neither realized her big secret.

They thought she was Nikita, the rightful alpha of the Blakemore pack. The males who wanted her didn’t know she was Nia, the younger twin, the one who’d assumed her sister’s identity from infancy.

Her admiring gaze swept over Aiden as the alphas drew close to the throne and Aiden punched his rival. Sweat dampened his thick black hair, slicked his hard body and droplets clung to the dark hairs of his chest. His skin was golden and tanned, gleaming beneath the light of the twin crystal chandeliers. As fine as smooth, chiseled marble, his powerful body flexed as he danced around his opponent. The taut globes of his ass came into view as he spun around, using his long legs to kick Richard and throw him off balance.

The males were driven by the instinctive need to mate and breed. It was basic biology, the dominating male werewolf’s drive to spread his seed and sire offspring to rule after him. In this rugged region of Montana, male werewolves outnumbered females. The Blakemore pack with its abundance of unmated and fertile females was a prize for these two virile males to claim.

But first, she had to make sure the boys played by the rules.

Nia’s sharpened gaze swept the assembled werewolves. A scowling Lupine in a green silk shirt leaned against a faded tapestry. Her eyes narrowed. Definitely hiding something behind his back.

Nia removed the honed dagger hanging from the diamond-studded belt on her white velvet robes. The fight took the males closer to the crowd hovering by the west wall. Aiden punched Richard hard, sending the alpha male crashing down. As the leader of the Mitchell pack leaned over his opponent, Silk Shirt detached from the wall and raised his hand.

Light caressed the gleaming steel blade he held over Aiden.

She stood and flung her dagger. It sailed through the air and sank deep into Silk Shirt’s wrist, pinning him to the wall. He screamed and dropped the switchblade.

She’d taught herself that move years ago, perfecting it to protect the pack females from lusty males.

Richard stood, wiping blood streaming into his eyes. He growled at the offender, snapped his fingers. Two males rushed forward to obey.

“Bring him outside and guard him. He’ll be dealt with later,” he ordered. “He knew the rules. No weapons. No assistance from pack.”

Silk Shirt whimpered as Richard’s men pulled the dagger from his wrist and lifted him under the arms.

“Wait,” Aiden ordered.

He took Nia’s blade. The dagger arced, slicing the air and then the male’s throat. As the werewolf burbled his last gasp, Aiden used the dying man’s shirt to wipe the blade clean.

No mercy on those ruthless features as Aiden twirled the blade.

“Dealt with,” he said.

Inside, Nia shivered at his ruthlessness, though she agreed with the action. Werewolves battling for power in this brutal challenge searched for any display of weakness. Aiden couldn’t ignore such a blatant insult by Richard’s pack. Nia returned to the throne and smoothed out her expression to show no trace of emotion. Nothing to incite the 200 plus assembled males from both packs to disregard the rules and engage in an all-out war they couldn’t afford.

The Blakemore pack could barely defend themselves, a fact Nia had desperately hidden. They needed strong males to help protect their territory. And they were all going hungry, for the ranch had lost too much income in the past year. Even game in their forest was scarce.

The fighting males thought they would win the Blakemore alpha female as a mate, the entire Blakemore pack to call their own, and the Blakemore Ranch as a nice bonus.

They didn’t realize she wasn’t an alpha female, there were only females left in the Blakemore pack, and the ranch was stricken with disease that killed all males of shapeshifting age.

Nia drew in a trembling breath, hoping the fight would end soon. The longer all these males remained on her land, the more nervous she became. Hurry up and finish. Then, please, go home and stay safe. This place is cursed.

Roxanne Valmont, the Blakemore pack beta, retrieved the dagger as Richard’s men rushed the dead werewolf outside. Aiden nodded to Nia, touching his forehead in a gesture of respect, then resumed the battle with Richard.

Nia didn’t know how the hell they’d resolve this mess. After she and her twin were born 25 years ago, their father had insisted there was only one living girl born to the Blakemore alpha pair. Nikita had been hidden, for it was prophesied in their family that the eldest girl twin born on the seventh day of the seventh month belonged to the Silver Wizard. He would come for her after she lived 25 years, and take her to his home in Tir Na-nog, the afterworld, to become his bride. And she would die, for no mortal being survived in the afterworld.

The twins had traded places to let Nikita out once in a while, but only their aunt Mandy, close friend Roxanne and a few elder females in the pack realized they were twins.

It was an effective ruse they’d managed to pull off up until now.

Nia gripped the armrests as Aiden moved on the floor, his actions smooth and flowing as he ducked Richard’s punch. Richard was smooth arrogance, a blond charmer who came from wealth and privilege. Adding his lands to theirs would make his domain even more powerful.

Sex with him would be bland and dutiful. Safe.

Not so with dark-haired Aiden, with his wide shoulders and heavily-muscled body. Raw and untamed, he fought as if the idea of bedding her drove him to a mating frenzy. Sweat dripped down his temples as he slammed Richard against the wall.

A very female part of her appreciated the flex of powerful biceps, the thick muscles dividing his back. Not an ounce of fat on him, not on the ripped abdomen, the narrow hips or his strong limbs.

Her gaze darted down to the thick thatch of black hair at his groin. At rest, his penis was impressive. Big, like Aiden himself. The thought of taking all that male hardness into her untried body, feeling him move over her as they consummated their union…

The flush of arousal filled her as she watched the powerful werewolf fight. She’d fantasized about the male in the dark night, wondering what he’d be like as a lover.

Aiden fought for her sister’s hand, not hers. He fought to mate with the alpha of the Blakemore pack and technically, her older twin was the alpha.

I am pretending to be someone I am not. A leader, an alpha like he is. My whole life has been based upon a lie to keep Niki hidden.

But after masquerading as her twin for all these years, she wished someone could see her for herself. Love her as an individual, not as the Lupine they knew as Nikita Blakemore.

The grunts and groans of the two sparring males echoed through the ballroom. Her peripheral vision caught sight of her aunt Mandy entering the ballroom. Nia’s heart pounded hard with every click of Mandy’s boot heels across the parquet floor.

Upon reaching the throne, Mandy whispered into her ear. Nia stiffened.

“Now?” Nia asked.

Mandy nodded at the fighting men. “Now, before the fight is finished and one of them wins.”

She released a sharp breath and followed her aunt out of the ballroom, away from the crescendo of male grunts and the crack of a fist slamming into muscle. Razor sharp fear surged. She wasn’t certain how much longer she and her twin could carry on this ruse.

Things had dragged on far too long. And soon, she would have to pay the price.

 

Grab the boxed set for just $0.99 to read this story and seven others…

Bad Boys of the Night: Eight Sizzling Paranormal Romances is available from Amazon Kindle, Kobo Books, Barnes and Noble Nook, Apple iBooks stores and other retailers. Find the links to your preferred retailer at: http://www.felicityheaton.co.uk/bad-boys-of-the-night/

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Feb 16

She Hearts Books

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Feb 17

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Feb 18

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Feb 20

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Feb 21

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Feb 22

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Feb 23

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Feb 24

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Feb 26

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Feb 27

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Feb 28

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Feb 29

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Anthology Update

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very excited… it is official… my published works now number 2 shorts/in anthologies and 1 full length novel… that is three stories from the Finder’s Keepers world… and Feb 13 I am off to a signing for anyone near the tri-state area… (ky/wv/oh) … all those from the local writer’s group will be sitting down for a signing at the South Shore Library… just follow rt23 and watch for the library building with the green roof… 😛

hopefully, after the signing I will have more information about buy links and a picture of the cover… I do know that my short story was a wee bit long, which caused my fellow writer (Cathy) to need to shorten it a little… she had to cut out some of the less important bits… still… it is an excellent way to learn more about Joffrey, a Sentinel… Joffrey has a bigger part in book two of the Finder’s Keepers series… Southern Discoveries (and yes, I hope I am done messing with my title… lol)

Author Love/ Meet VL Locey

Wanted to take a moment to show off some of the work by a fellow GWP author… Enjoy, and happy wordage everyone, Tracey… Maybe I will start a celebratory TBR list for after I know that all the edits are done for Twin Findings… that sounds like a good plan to me… and why not start my list with a fellow GWP…

Blitz Package Banner
BOOK INFORMATION

TITLE – O Captain! My Captain!
SERIES – To Love a Wildcat Series
AUTHOR – V.L. Locey
GENRE – Erotic Hockey Romance
PUBLICATION DATE – Sept. 15, 2015
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) – 173 pages
PUBLISHER – Gone Writing Publishing
COVER ARTIST – Dawne Dominique – DusktilDawn Designs


BOOK SYNOPSIS

Naked man in hockey helmet and skatesBeing a single working mother isn`t easy. Just ask Maggie Charles. She`s juggling a job she hates, a rebellious teenage son, and the aftereffects of an abusive first marriage. There isn`t room in her life for a love affair, not that anyone would want to romance someone her age anyway, right? So why, after all these months, when she runs into the strapping Wildcats` captain at a charity event, does the sight of Derrick Andersson leave her so breathless once again? Is that really desire burning in the captain`s green eyes when he looks at her? Is it possible for a couple of been-there-and-done-that’s to find love the second time around?

BUY & TBR LINKS

AMAZON KINDLE US
BARNES & NOBLES NOOK

 


EXCERPT

Every sense I possessed switched to Derrick after the back of my legs bumped the mattress and box spring. The way he talked, moved, smelled, tasted, felt. He was imposing physically yes, but it was so much more than his physical presence. He was slowly making me feel like a sexy woman again. I hadn’t felt attractive for close to twenty years.

“It’s been a very long time for me,” I told him on a soft breath out as he kissed the spot where one thin strap had dug a slight groove into my shoulder.

“I don’t believe that,” he replied, moving the other strap off my shoulder with a soft flick of his finger. “I don’t believe the men you know are so stupid. You’re so beautiful.”

“Well, maybe they are…God.” I shuddered so violently I couldn’t speak when he unzipped my dress. It slid downward, getting caught on my arms where they were wound around him. “I don’t—yes, just please…okay, that’s so nice.”

His mouth had moved over my neck as his hands caressed my arms. I lowered my arms from his waist and the golden creation slid off over my wrists. I stepped out of the sequined puddle with his help.


AUTHOR BIO

Author Photo - VL LoceyV.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, two dogs, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and three Jersey steers.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.

AUTHOR FOLLOW LINKS

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Goodreads
My blog
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This event has been organized & hosted by
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Check out Vivian Lane

Vivian Lane was kind enough to stop by and answer a few author interview questions for us… so sit back and learn a little more about Vivian… and get ready for Protector, out the first of the year…

1. Do you have a favorite book baby?
A future Agent Seven book that hasn’t been released, yet. Writing it got me through some tough times. When nothing else was coming to me, I could work on that.
2. Which series flows so much easier that you find yourself telling the voices that they must give the other series some air time?
Well, the first drafts of several Children of Ossiria stories have been written a long time and publishing them in 2016 is my priority.
3.Do you have any writing quirks that you are willing to share? (like I have a tendency to write long hand then move to the computer, just something that frees your mind to think and connect the dots)
I need quiet to write. The quiet hum of my computer or the AC is fine, but anything else is totally distracting, which means much of my writing has happened in the middle of the night. I’ve lived more vampire hours as a writer than not!
4. Do you enjoy creating anything other than your word babies?
I recently took up drawing/sketching. I post finished projects on Facebook. I’ve tried out most any craft over the years. I can crochet and cross stitch. I don’t have a sewing machine anymore, but I used to sew. I’ve painted simple projects in the past. Just about anything you can pick up from a Michael’s store, I’ve probably tried it. I like working with my hands.
5. Where does your love of supernatural/paranormal/fantasy come from? Or is it something that has always been with you?
Always, as far back as I can remember. Sci-fi, fantasy, superheroes, all that stuff. My parents were geeks.
6. You have been drafted to compete in a triathlon, with the option to ask one of your characters to take your place. Which of them would step up, and who would run screaming? Which one would you ask first, and why?
Agent Seven, Della, would probably do it if I asked nicely. The vampires can’t because of that whole pesky sunlight issue. Carys, from PROTECTOR, would say no way. She’s not into marathon exercise.
7. What would you suggest to other writers when it comes to participating in a writing community? What are your hard and fast rules?
Communities all vary, so if you join up, observe for a while before jumping in. Helps prevent stepping on any toes. Follow the rules set by the group. Contribute help where you can.
8. Do you have any co-authors? Human or of the four legged variety?
No. And my cat isn’t allowed on my desk. Otherwise, my keyboard would’ve stopped working a long time ago!
9. How do you deal with writer’s doubt?
Talk (whine) to my closest peeps. Give myself a break. Know it’s normal and everyone has it. Distract myself with something fun. Someone with zero doubts is delusional. The best books of all time still get low reviews, so….
10. Late at night, you’re walking down an alley in the worst part of town. What villain, either yours or from someone else’s book, would you hate to run into?
Juliet from STRANGE ALLIES and Nicholae from SAVING CHARLOTTE. My vampire William before PROTECTOR. Any of the Red Court or Black Court vamps from The Dresden Files…..every villain from The Dresden Files, actually.

Book Spotlight:

Title – Protector (Children of Ossiria #1)

Author – Vivian Lane

Genre – Urban Fantasy

Book Blurb:

First in a new series!

Carys Taylor has her life perfectly under control. Equipped with a nice inheritance, she goes where she wants, when she wants, pursuing anything that interests her. So when her old professor asks her to come on a research trip for his thesis, she’s eager to tag along.

Until that ill-fated trip to the South American jungle changes her into a supernatural being. Now she’s sprouting claws and stronger and faster than any human being in existence. The reclusive tribe calls her their Protector – but from what? And why now? Why her?

Carys is pulled into a world she never knew existed. Is she up to the task?

Buy Links – Releasing Jan. 1, 2016. Apple | Barnes and Noble | Amazon | Smashwords | Kobo

Author Biography:

Writer of supernatural badasses.

Vivian Lane is an American author.  Born a Gemini, her interests fall under a myriad of subjects including classical music, American and World History; fantasy books, TV shows, and movies; travel, marine biology, and fashion.

Social Media Links

Blog. Facebook. Twitter. Goodreads.

Promo teaser vampire

Excerpt 1:

Carys, next time someone asks you to go with them to the middle of nowhere, say no.

My old professor asked me to come along on a trip to study native music. He was cataloging the songs of an obscure tribe. I had nothing more important to do, so I said sure. Got all the necessary shots and documents, and we made the long journey down.

Little did I know, it would be a life changing experience.

Our destination was a small village in the heart of the South American jungle. How he ever heard of them, I didn’t know. Took us three days by boat to get there. Our team consisted of the professor, our guide/interpreter, the professor’s assistant who was using this trip as info for his thesis, and me. As a music therapist, I used music to heal people’s souls, so I would be lending my expertise in the emotional resonance of the songs.

Approximately fifty people lived in the village, some of the nicest people I’d ever met, instantly welcoming and glad to share their musical history. My job was recording the performances with the handheld camera. They kept staring at me when they thought I wasn’t looking. At first, I attributed it to them never seeing a fair-skinned woman before, but the stares continued through the week.

That should have been my first clue.

Los Angeles cityscape

Excerpt 2:

A month later, it was my first day out doing something normal—shopping at the mall. Up to now, I’d avoided crowds, doing my grocery shopping when the stores were almost deserted. Walking to my car in the parking garage, my hands were full of bags, and a man walked behind me. At first, I didn’t think of hearing someone behind me, until his footsteps sped up to get close to me. He demanded my purse. I was willing to cooperate since I didn’t want to provoke him. Better my stuff than my life, right? That’s what the police tell you to do. So, I set down the bags, and the guy lunged for my purse.

I can’t tell you how I did what happened next.

Next thing I knew, I had the guy in a choke hold with claws pressed to his neck. Claws! The guy started freaking out, then, begging me not to hurt him. I tightened the hold until he blacked out, then called 911 on my cell phone. The police arrived, took my statement and the mugger, and I went home.

Shaking.

My fingernails turned into claws. That was NOT normal. Both hands? I stared at my left. Yep, both hands. Oh God.

And then the fight moves. What was that? This wasn’t The Matrix. I hadn’t been plugged into a machine for a kung fu download. Had I? What really happened in that village?

 

Monthly Goods

I have been thinking… blogging is very important to a writer but what do I really have to say to people besides my writing??? So what did I come up with??? Monthly goods, or more accurately, weekly goods… Like the first week of every month I could update the world on book progress…

The second week of every month??? How about Multiple Sclerosis facts from my point of view… I mean, we all have issues and problems that we have to deal with on a daily basis… it is only through exposure that the scary and unknown can be faced… as human beings we have a very long history of lashing out at what we don’t understand… I actually had a woman screaming in my face when i parked in a handicapped parking space… not cool… but when you first look at me, i  look healthy and in the prime of life… HA… after I was near tears and screaming back that she could call my doctor up for my latest MRI (possible foul language involved) she became meek and started explaining all the reasons why her behavior was acceptable…. still not cool… I know that explaining my day to day MS blues might not help with parking lot attacks, but if those I know and those I interact with know what MS is and how it can affect my reactions and health, then hopefully misunderstandings can be avoided… but lets be a little more fun with the topic… lots of facts, and some oops, the MS made me do it stories… (like the time I threw my diet coke in my own face because of an arm twitch…)

Week three??? Lets do art time… I love all things art… and when I need to recharge (aka: give my brain a rest) I put down the evil edits and do something artsey… paint an oil painting, design a bracelet, and I plan to start making my own pendants…. the clay has been bought, and soon the pendants will be created… muhahahaha… not to mention the design book mom picked out for one of my Christmas presents (shhh, don’t tell)

And finally we rap up the month with Random Chat… like ranting and raving about my favorite shows and movies, the local restaurants, and vacation fun… and everything has to be full of pinterest pictures as well as my own pictures…

But that only takes up four days out of every month… that is a lot of days left un-blogged… boooo…. these are the early days of my writing career… which means I have time to put in a few more blogs than the more famous authors… So lets put in a few book reviews when I have read something new (which is my other pass-time) and random daily insanity posts… woo who… for now, happy wordage every one, Tracey Clark

Renee Lovins Book Blitz

Glass Hearts by Renee Lovins

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Release Day: December 1, 2015

Synopsis:

Love is a choice you make.

Ember Verre is about to follow her dream – cooking school in Paris. When tragedy strikes her family, she walks away from her goals to be there for them.
Ring Jordan has it all, great friends, great parents, and is working on his MBA. When his father unexpectedly dies, he drops everything to go home, not expecting to stay.

Struggling to be everything for her family, the last thing Ember expects is to run into her one night stand, the guy she would have loved to have met in Paris. Ring is trying to pick up the pieces of his dad’s crumbling legacy, and is shocked to run into the girl he can’t forget. While they lean on each other to get through this rough patch in their lives, will they choose to let love shine, or keep their fragile hearts safe and alone?

GHCover

Book Links:

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27417054-glass-hearts

Amazon – http://amzn.to/21nNXvY

Author Bio:

Renee is a native of California who somehow ended up married to a Georgia boy. Living in Atlanta, she works way to much, commutes too many hours a day, and writes instead of cleaning the house. With one husband, three cats, and a pile of to be read books, she keeps awaiting the apocalypse, because then she might have time to catch up. When she isn’t writing original stuff, she falls back to her old love, Buffy Fan-fiction, and she still posts occasionally.

Glass Hearts is her second Novel, the first being Ink Deep.

What she says about the Fairy Modern Series: I love Fairy tales, but always thought the magic rescuing you at the last moment undercut everything. So these are my takes on the trope, where the characters make their own magic – love, of course.

Follow me, you never know when I might post excerpt, short stories, or even a new fanfiction.

GHTeaser

Author Links:

http://www.reneelovins.com/

http://www.twitter.com/reneelovins

http://www.instagram.com/reneelovinswrites

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8421270.Renee_Lovins

https://www.facebook.com/reneelovinsauthor

http://amzn.to/1XC8Vmi

 

V.L. Locey drops by on her blog tour

One of my Gone Writing Publishing peeps was kind enough to drop by and chat with us… she also wants to introduce us to the steamy life of female pro hockey… oooo… I can’t wait … 😛 enjoy

Fighting the bumps in the writing road…

I’d like to thank Finders Keepers for hosting me today! I love visiting blogs and chatting with folks about my books and the writing process. Most generally, the writing road is a relatively smooth one for me. I don’t usually struggle with writer’s block too often. If anything, my problem is having so many ideas vying to be written at once. It’s like trying to separate the wheat from the chafe at times.

“Yes muse, this idea about a women’s pro hockey team is boffo! The one about the ninja chimpanzees who fight zombies while riding Harley’s may not be exactly what we’re hoping to write, but good effort!”

You always have to speak to your muse politely or they get tiffy and no author wants a tiffy muse.

Occasionally I’ll get slapped with a round of doubt and start comparing myself to other author’s. When I begin to do this, I try to stop myself as quickly as I can. I cannot be J.K. Rowling no matter how much I wish I were. I can only be V.L. Locey, the erotic hockey romance author. If I am writing the best hockey romances that I can, then I need to stop making comparisons. Generally the round of doubt will only last a short while, I’m a pretty upbeat person overall. Hearing from a reader that enjoyed your book is the best way to help pave over the potholes in the writing road!

What do you do to fight off a case of the self-doubts? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments!

Skate hard and love deeply,

V.L. Locey

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BOOK INFORMATION

TITLE – Clean Sweep
SERIES – Venom Series
AUTHOR – V.L. Locey
GENRE – Erotic Hockey Romance
PUBLICATION DATE – Sept.26, 2015
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) – 155 pages/57,500
PUBLISHER – Gone Writing Publishing
COVER ARTIST – Reverie Design


 

BOOK SYNOPSIS

Clean Sweep - New CoverFiery, flame-haired Jane Bratkowski is catapulted from a small college town to Philadelphia to become head coach of a new women’s hockey team, The Venom. It’s a life-changing opportunity, a dream come true until – in a cruel twist of fate that could turn into a nightmare – she comes face to face with her ex-husband Tore Ahlberg, the Wildcats’ head of European Scouting.

Suddenly, Jane’s faced with more challenges than she bargained for: Will she let him distract her — and derail her big chance to coach pro hockey? Can she build a team of relatively inexperienced, irrepressible young women into champions? Can she and Tore triumph over the gut-wrenching tragedy that ripped them apart — or will the shocking truth of their passionate past threaten to destroy them once again?


BUY & TBR LINKS

AMAZON KINDLE US
AMAZON KINDLE UK
BARNES & NOBLES NOOK
GOODREADS


 

EXCERPT

It was on the tip of my tongue to ask him how, or why, he remembered so much from our years of wedded bliss. Instead, I marched into the bathroom, Pomeranians in hand, then shut the door on him, his tie, and those damned recollections of a time best left in the past.

I washed my face then set to work on detangling. I accomplished this with snarling expletives aimed at long dead ancestors. The boys were restless. I laid down my hairbrush then snuck over to the door. I couldn`t hear my ex on the other side. I cracked the door just enough to peer through. Tore was standing at the sliding glass door. He still cut a fine figure from the back even though he was now in his early fifties. Wide shoulders, lean waist, long legs. The sun made his straw-colored blonde hair look like spun gold. It was time to stop, Jane. I had thought to ask him to walk the dogs but after that Rumpelstiltskin moment, perhaps a brisk walk would do me good. I closed the door quietly. Ten minutes later I stepped out, face freshly scrubbed, hair beaten into submission, and dogs in dire need.

“I have to get dressed,” I told Tore when he turned from the city to look at me.

“You want me to leave?” I nodded. “We were married, Jane. Unless you have done some alterations, there is nothing I have not seen before.”

I felt a slight flush rushing up behind the freckles on my cheeks. “There have been no alterations. Go wait on the patio. I mean it, Tore. Don`t give me that stupid look. Go.”

“Stupid look? I have a stupid look?” he asked, a definite twinkle in his eye. A sharp comment was resting on my tongue. I swallowed it back to be nice. It was only seven am. Even ex-husbands deserve a small kindness from time to time.


 

AUTHOR BIO

Author Photo - VL LoceyV.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, two dogs, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and three Jersey steers.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.


 

AUTHOR FOLLOW LINKS

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Goodreads
My blog
Tsú


 

GIVEAWAY PRIZES

$20.00 Amazon Gift Card

ENTER THE AUTHORS GIVEAWAY HERE


 

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This Event has been Organized & Hosted by:
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Nov 11 Paranormal Love Wednesday Blog HOP

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Join the blog hop, check out some Paranormal Lovin’

HERE

My contribution to this HOP is a snippet of Shocking Finds (A Finder’s Keepers Novel)… the link to Amazon as well as a page with all other buy links can be located at the bottom… now here is your never before posted excerpt… enjoy

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She’d overreacted. Again.

Walking into Finder’s Keepers, Marin admitted just how screwed she truly was. Her small electrical problem got worse every time she lost her temper. And the person she needed to ask about said problem? Marin had shocked the shit out of Kyland and watched as he disappeared. Crap and double crap. Her latest episode had ended with the death of both her television and most of her living area lamps. She couldn’t afford this new gift. If she lost her coffee maker, Marin would be having her new power bound, or cut out, or whatever happened when a person chose to have a gift removed.

Looking around the office, counting all the antique furnishings, Marin started to second-guess the merit of her intentions, running in to pick up some Finds to work on at home. Between the French terra cotta flooring, with oak wood inlays, and the antique Persian Sultanabad rug running underfoot in the sitting area, the cheapest decorative items to be found were the Tiffany lamps and other assorted light fixtures, fixtures that could explode at any moment, raining glass down on all in sight. Not exactly a cheap mistake to have to clean up.

On top of everything else, the hospital had informed Marin that Lindal remained in her coma-like state. She didn’t understand what little information the nurse had been allowed to give her over the phone, and the lack of solid facts was enough to drive a saint over the edge. Waiting for visiting hours, to speak to someone face to face, had Marin’s nerves on edge.

Did Lindal have internal injuries? What did the doctor think? Marin could only remember walking back to see Lindal. Everything else remained a blur. A surreal and crappy day. She just needed to kill a couple hours— or five. Add in the drive time and she should get to the hospital just in time to sit in the waiting room. Okay, she needed more to do. Even driving under the speed limit, the hospital was only forty minutes from her house, just outside of the city.

Freezing in place, Marin remembered her poor van. She had allowed Kyland to take her home, to desert her vehicle.

Continuing down the hall, Marin reworked her day to accommodate her van’s retrieval. She couldn’t keep driving Lindal’s car.

As Marin passed Anton’s office, she heard the answer to one of her problems. Kennith’s voice boomed out into the hallway, and Kennith meant Finder cases that involved the Finds that Anton said that she wasn’t ready for but hopefully he would make an exception just this once. She didn’t normally work on those, but she was desperate.

Sure, Kennith worked for the SBI and mainly worked with Finders that had previous law enforcement training, but maybe they would allow her to help out in some small way.

Marin walked into Anton’s inner sanctum and came to an abrupt halt as Anton and Kennith turned disbelieving eyes her way. Shoving her hands into her pockets, she anxiously bounced from foot to foot, wondering if she should have knocked. Anton’s policy had always been an open door policy. If the looks aimed her way were any indication, things must have changed. This was her first time seeking Anton out in his office, and the door had stood wide open, but that clearly didn’t mean come on in.

The level of silent scrutiny became uncomfortable, a suffocating tension building in the air. Really, Anton could just ask her to come back later. He owned Finder’s Keepers, after all.

“Did I do something wrong?” Marin couldn’t believe that her one hope at creating a distraction from her day looked to be one more log for the stress pile.

“Come in and shut the door, please.” Anton’s voice came out crisp and demanding.

This couldn’t be good. Anton had never had a closed door meeting with her. Or with anyone that she could remember.

Marin frantically tried to think… What had she done wrong? She needed this job. Unlike most Finders, she had to work Finds. She didn’t have a choice. She would be overwhelmed by her heightened senses without her current job. If she went too long without a Find, she started to feel her senses pulling, searching for the lost without her permission.

Working at Finder’s Keepers had become the perfect outlet for Marin’s overwhelming senses. She could unwind and keep her senses from overloading while Anton happily pointed her in the most profitable direction.

Marin pushed the door closed and squared her shoulders, trying to prepare herself for the worst, while doing her best to block out the increasing buzz in her temples. The stress of waiting for Anton to speak had her head ready to explode. Blinking rapidly, Marin smoothed her sweaty hands against the top of her paintsplattered jeans, trying to remain calm.

If Marin didn’t want to lose control of her emotions, and her gift, out in the waiting area, she definitely didn’t want to start blowing up Anton’s office. She couldn’t help but stare in dread at the vintage Lalique Perruches glass lamp perched in a place of pride on Anton’s desk. The damn lamp cost nearly five grand. She had cringed at the price while helping Anton locate an antiques dealer to replace his broken one. Now she shook her head, accepting the dock in pay that would come her way, once the shit hit the fan. She didn’t know what the chairs and love seat had cost, or even the elaborately carved bookshelves, but the Persian rug would be another twenty grand or so, should the flying glass from the exploding lamp do any damage.

The way Kennith kept gawking at her maybe she was dying. Then again, maybe he was. There was no way that much shock on one man’s face could be healthy. Any minute now, Kennith would surely pass out. He didn’t even appear to be breathing. Marin focused on Anton, instead. Kennith obviously needed some privacy. No one should be seen looking so weak. He was a police officer, for heaven’s sake, and he looked ready to run, throw up, or just keel over on the spot.

“How?” That one choked out word didn’t come from an expected source. Apparently, Kennith could still speak. Now, if he could start making sense.

Marin waited for more. How what? When it was clear that Kennith either couldn’t, or wouldn’t, say more, she looked for Anton to finish the question.

Anton said, “You’re radiating power, my dear. Then, of course, there is the question of your soul-bound shadow. I think our friend Kennith is asking about the nature of this increase in power as well as the acquisition of said shadow.”

BUY LINKS

Amazon

Other Buy Links

Rebels and Readers Event

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I was so nervous to be volunteering at this years Rebels and Readers Event… soo many readers and authors running around and I didn’t have a clue what to do… I felt like a fish out of water… 😛 thankfully, the feeling of community and acceptance was just as strong there (face to face) as it is online… I even managed to come out of my shell a little.. as a life long lover of living in the shadows being forward usually gives me heartburn…

By volunteering, I got the chance to interact and do a test run of group interaction… now don’t laugh… there are a lot of people that think this type of attitude is silly, or just an act… But I was that girl that got the solo, but didn’t really want it… I loved to sing, but thinking about all those people staring at me … well, I threw up before every concert… lol… being at the Rebels and Readers Event was a lot like that… (No vomit this time) … one of the things I have started doing in order to push my limits is to immediately tell people that I’m shy, that I don’t know what I’m doing, that I’m afraid I will screw up… this help by letting others know that I am not bitchy or stuck up, I just don’t know what to say or do… they gave me a task to concentrate on, and once I started feeling comfortable, I allowed my inner jokester to come out (the one that usually only comes out to play when I’m around friends and family) the other thing I have been doing to help myself become more outgoing??? I hum or sing to myself whenever the action slows down and I don’t have a task to focus on… silly, but it works for me … singing in front of people used to instill horrible fear, even more than speaking… by using my voice in this small way, I keep myself from hiding in those welcoming shadows…

Check out the Rebels and Readers’s BLOG for all kinds of book goodies

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The Event seemed to go really well… the authors voiced a lot of thanks to Amy and Tanya (Rebel and Readers Queens!!!) There were dozens of give-a-ways and raffle games… The crowd packed in from 10am-2pm on both Saturday and Sunday, enjoying all the free swag and numerous books to purchase… The above picture is from Sunday, which contain about half as many people… double the number of people you see in the picture and you still can’t imagine how packed it was… lol… walking through the room was a challenge but worth suffering the overwhelming body heat… Rock on Authors…

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Why the heck am I wearing a sweater, you ask??? it was under 40 degrees outside and the air conditioning was on high in the event areas to combat the number of people enjoying all the lovely books… Casey L. Bond took pity on me as I shivered in my short sleeved shirt (early in the event before the crowd brought in the body head) She is a lovely person, not to mention a awesome author… you guys should definitely check out her books… And how cute it is that sweater… I loved it, and need one of my own… lol… The sweater promotes the lovely Cambria Herber’s Nerd Series… Another wonderful author… she has so many must read books, as well as information (on her blog/follow the link) for authors like me that feel like they are drowning in the Promotional aspect of being a writer…

I am glad I got to volunteer this year… It gave me a chance to watch the authors in actions and take notes on what I should do when I become one of their number… Shocking Finds  will hopefully have a table to display itself next year… now I need to get cracking on finishing the next book… Seriously, the authors and readers were great… I can’t wait for next year…

Don’t for get the contest to win a free ebook copy of Shocking Finds (A Finder’s Keepers Novel) ends tomorrow at 10am… I thought the contest ended at noon, but sorry guys, it ends a little earlier than that… just go to CD Hersh’s Blog and leave a comment on Shocking Finds Friday Feature… Woo who…

Happy Wordage, Tracey

Friday Feature Tracey Clark Shocking Finds

Source: Friday Feature Tracey Clark Shocking Finds

We’ll collect the email addresses of commenters who post on your showcase weekend (Friday til noon the following Monday) and send the winner’s name and email to you so you can contact them and arrange for the prize delivery.

-CD Hersh

follow the link above and lets get this contest rolling… woo who… cant wait to read your comments – tracey

writing writing writing

Just a quick update… NaNoWriMo and other writing musts have marked November at their territory… this means my fingers are cramping, my eyes are drooping, and my brain is screaming that it has been overbooked… lol… but it’s only one month Right? RIGHT! 😛

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Anywho… I posted earlier this week that there would be a contest to win an ebook copy of Shocking Finds… and that contest will start tomorrow… go to CD Hersh’s Site for a chance to win… the link will go live at 1:30 AM EST tomorrow Nov 6…

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We’ll collect the email addresses of commenters who post on your showcase weekend (Friday to the noon the following Monday) and send the winner’s name and email to you so you can contact them and arrange for the prize delivery.

-CD Hersh

Just Click HERE to read her post and enter to win!!!

alrighty… that’s it for now guys… i’m back at the word-mill for now… happy wordage, tracey clark

Off to a running start… NaNoWriMo

Woowho… 9am and I have 2,090 words written toward my 50K word goal… that is a lot of words, peeps… I plan to rack up at least 2K more… yep, I’m insane… lol… but the cushion is a must… especially if I plan to fit in Karen Chance’s latest novel on Nov 3… OMG, am I excited about this book!!!

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I love her Pritkin character, and just have to find out more… I want him to get to be with Cassie… *swoon***AHHHH!!!!

There are a few other books on my must read list, but Reap the Wind is at the top of the heap… I have a lot to do this month… Between NaNo, books I want to enjoy, and family, I have a few guest posts to organize (both ones featuring me on someone else’s site and a few post for my own site featuring other people) Oh, boy… I also need to continue making swag… I have some booklets, which are palm sized and contain the first few chapters of Shocking Finds… They are the cutest things I have ever seen… and they were a pain to figure out… lol… It was like a puzzle, a brain teaser, but I finally figured out a templet

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I also plan to make some more bookmarks when I have time… sorry about the pic, but I had a devil of a time taking the picture… I laminated them before adding the beads, so the light keeps bouncing off that… but trust me, they are cuties… the templet for those was a lot easier…

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working with the small evil (but cute) beads tends to cramp my fingers up… but come one… I have plans and stiff fingers only slow me down, I refuse to be stopped… muhahaha… maybe that is why I decided to make a few bracelets… I am getting so good at them that I need a few for myself…

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Yep… I love those things… lol…

But the most important part of November is NaNoWriMo… most of the month will be about writing (editing and fluffing out the chapters) book two of the Finder’s Keepers Series… I’m also writing a short story for one of the minor characters… one that I already love, and may end up using more in the forefront, but that is up to the voices in my head… really, the voices are in charge… *no there not, yes we are, no way, we’ll give you a migraine if you don’t comply, I’ll kill off your character, We’ll give you… WRITER’S BLOCK… muhahahahahaha* 😛

alrighty… I’ve gotta go finish my internal fight, and continue adding to my latest novel… happy wordage, Tracey

Blog Tour Wrapup

I want to thank everyone once again for helping with Shocking Finds Blog Tour… you were all great… the writing community is by far a supportive and loving group, full of inspiration and that added push that we all need from time to time…

The final Blogger for this Tour, Dante Craddock, did a great job on the Author interview… visit this Blog to read a few more probing questions, then stick around and check out the site… Dante Craddock’s site is full of Interviews and Spotlights… as well as a bunch of other goodies… You can also check out some of Dante’s work… woo who, wordage 😛

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Marin Yarthine had trouble containing a childish giggle or two. She had managed to locate an Orion Starbrary Indigo Violet Aura Lemurian Seed Quartz Crystal for her boss. The longest, oddest name for a rock, but Anton had been very specific. Besides, she was the best Finder at Finder’s Keepers, who better to go on this mission.

Okay… so her job wasn’t actually to go out in the field and complete Finder’s missions. Finds were completed by a different department. Marin knew that she was nothing more than a high paid researcher. She could take a piece of cloth and tell you where it had been, what had been near it, who had touched it, and more importantly, she could visualize where any related objects might be located.

Yesterday, Anton handed Marin an old textbook written in something that looked like Latin, and asked her to Find a rare crystal for his collection. The words on the book cover had been meaningless to her, but once Marin had held the fragile text in her hands, she had known exactly where to go.

Marin had wanted to complete just one mission on her own. She had been prepared to search the dank and cold Kentucky cave systems, not stopping until she had her Find. It was a simple case, with no danger involved. She would never attempt the kidnaping cases, or one of the Finds involving a murder weapon.

Marin had been surprised to feel the newest store in the area, Crystal Sights, pulling at her Finder’s gift. Anton had sworn up and down that the crystal would be hard to locate. Aisle six – rare gems and crystals—was not her idea of difficult. In and out and no one had gotten hurt.

Her aunt, Lindal, refused to even allow her to look at the building as they drove past, and now Marin had been inside and explored.

Marin had completed her first solo Finder’s mission. She had located exactly what Anton needed and managed to purchase a crystal of her very own. Not that she believed in crystals and magic. Her aunt had explained how her own ability, to locate the lost or stolen, was the closest thing to real magic left in the world. If Lindal knew that Marin had purchased one of the crystals for herself, her aunt would lose her ever lovin’ mind.

For once in her life, Marin didn’t care. She had felt the heat coming off her crystal as she held it in her hands. Maybe her aunt was wrong. Maybe the shopkeeper had told the truth, and the fragile but beautiful rock would help Marin come through her Transition with more protection and control.

“What do you think you’re doing?”

“Eep.” Marin barely managed to turn her full throttled scream into a small startled cry. She crashed into the small angry redhead, the one suddenly blocking her path, as she cleared the store exit.

Marin snapped her lips together on the urge to ask her aunt questions. Like where the hell she had come from? Trying not to lean away from the look on Lindal’s face, she waited for the sarcasm and disdain to flow. When Lindal merely stood there, glaring in silence, Marin whispered, “I had to run an errand for Anton.”

Lindal’s face brightened to a nice deep red, as her arms crossed, her mouth flattened out in displeasure, and her foot tapped out her impatience. “Don’t lie to me, missy. You work in the office or at home. You do not run around mingling with charlatans.”

Marin held her tongue, her heart beginning to race. She hated fighting with Lindal, and there was no way that this tirade was over. Lindal did more damage with words than lions did fighting over dinner. Marin wanted to be one of those people that could take a browbeating with a grain of salt. But she knew that this time wouldn’t be any easier to take than the other rants spouted over her nearly twenty-one years of life. Lindal’s personality could be vicious, and hard to take, but Marin didn’t have any other family.

Lindal jabbed her dainty finger at Marin, her words hissed with the pressure of contained rage. “Do you want to die like your mother? Do you enjoy making me worry and endangering your life like this?”

Marin lowered her head and whispered, “If magic isn’t real, then I should be safe enough. This is the only unscheduled stop I made.”

“Don’t back talk me, girl. Magic is for fools. And places like this are for those too weak to hold on to their money, those willing to purchase lies because they are unhappy with the imperfections they were born with. If your mother had stayed home, she would be alive. Instead, she was mugged in some back alley and left to bleed out with the trash.”

Marin flinched, yet yearned to hear more. It was the most Lindal had ever said about her mother, or the events that had led to her death. Taking a chance that her aunt would continue sharing, Marin asked, “Is there any way to be safe?” She wanted to ask more about her mother, but feared that Lindal would clam up if she pushed too directly.

“Listen and listen good. People, those freaks with meddling gifts, can see how weak you are. They are abominations, just like you, but they can and will plant thoughts inside your mind, and lead you into danger. Everyone has enhanced senses these days, but you are an oddity. Abnormal, just begging for some fool to believe he can steal your curse, and use it for his own plans, by taking your life. The crap sold in places like this will not give you a shield from the evil in this world.” Lindal had explained many times over the years that Marin had been born without the natural shield that protected a person’s mind.

“But if there are people that can play tricks, put thoughts in your mind, then maybe there could be some small magic that’s real.”

Placing the bag with her new crystal protectively behind her back, Marin fought not to back away from her aunt. The look in Lindal’s eyes told her plainly that she had pushed too far. Any sign of weakness would light a match to these attacks. “Tricks. Nothing but tricks. Your mind is just too weak to figure them out.”

Marin ground her teeth together and avoided her aunt’s eyes. Feeling her hands tighten around her gift bag, her eyes sought out the parking lot for anything to distract Lindal. Marin needed something for both of them to focus on, so that she could get her impotent rage under control. Getting defensive never helped. The woman looked weak and innocent, but ruled their home with an iron fist and razor sharp words.

Instead of continuing to explain all the reasons that Marin had screwed up, Lindal stiffly turned and walked into the parking lot. Apparently, her aunt planned to wait for a private moment to vent the rest of her displeasure. And vent she would. Lindal’s stiff movements and flushed complexion warned Marin that the conversation coming her way would be one of the worst.

Marin didn’t need the lecture repeated. She had it memorized. Rocks and stones are just that. Real magic didn’t exist. She needed to stay at home, safe, except for work. Blah… blah… blah. But Marin wanted more information. How did ordinary people put thoughts inside someone else’s mind? How did her co-worker’s little boy manage to move objects out of her reach when Marin wasn’t looking?

Not knowing what else to do, Marin followed Lindal into the parking lot. Lindal would be in a snit for days.

Marin still couldn’t contain the occasional squeal, though she attempted to keep them as quiet as possible. She needed to get her happiness under control.

Luckily, she had the entire length of the parking lot, to calm herself down. The lot seemed to have more cars than the entire area of Ashland, Kentucky had residents. Crystal Sights had managed to expand on the word grand in Grand Opening. Someone had had the good sense to combine the opening with the beginning of the area’s yearly festival season. Marin didn’t relish Lindal’s anger, but still thought that today had turned out better than she could have hoped. Smiling, she glanced around, as she walked behind her aunt, taking in the different types of shoppers.

Marin watched as three little old ladies climbed out of a bright yellow Caddie, their hair ranging from hooker red to bonnet blue. She saw a younger man pulling his reluctant girlfriend – or possibly wife – from the cab of their truck, her very pregnant belly leading the way. The woman was shaking her head, pointing to the insane number of people, still lining up to enter the store. Marin tried to stop herself from bouncing with every step, not wanting Lindal to see her happiness. This was the closet she had come to attending one of the hometown events, thrown every spring. Festivals that would only become larger when summer finally arrived.

Across the street, by the river, Marin could even see the over-night-assembled rides and concession stands, being mobbed by crowds of yet more tri-state citizens. So many types of people rushed around, laughter in their eyes. Even the pregnant woman had managed a smile, once she made it out of the truck and into the man’s arms.

Every squeak of excitement that Marin failed to contain received a reprimanding glare from Lindal. But Marin was too hopeful to allow Lindal’s mood to kill her joy completely. Claudette – the store owner – had called the stone a Maturation Crystal. Marin’s fingers still tingled from when she had touched the crystal earlier, giving her hope for her Transition Birthday. Everyone went through their twenty-first birthday hoping that they would have better control of their enhanced senses. Even if her birthday came and went without an improvement, the crystal marked Marin’s first independent action.

Marin didn’t want to fight; she wanted to celebrate. With that in mind, she put on a burst of speed, passing Lindal, as she said, “Where are you parked, Aunt Lindal?” Marin wanted to get in her car and head for home before Lindal started listing more ways that this trip had been a mistake. An evening alone in her art studio, admiring her Maturation Crystal, sounded like perfection.

Marin crossed her fingers that Lindal wouldn’t be as irate as the time that Anton had encouraged everyone that worked for Finder’s Keepers to participate in self-defense classes. Marin had been excited. The free classes took place in the gym, off the back of Finder’s Keepers. As far as bosses went, Anton ranked with the best. He even allowed her to compose her Finds at home, in her private studio. The information she came up with helped other Finders on their missions, and working from home kept Lindal from bitching.

Great work hours or not, Lindal still despised the man. Her sneering had managed to run Marin out of more than one room when the subject of Antonius Slade came up, especially after the self-defense debacle. Marin had managed to keep the classes a secret for two years before Lindal found out. And boy had that been memorable. Lindal had found and burned all the workout clothes and the fighting stick that Marin had stashed in her van. She flinched, remembering how the blaze had lit up the front yard, and how Lindal’s reddened face seemed to match the flames. Lindal had burned with rage, expressing her displeasure by instituting her own version of self-defense classes. Marin rubbed her sore hip, trying to shake off yesterday’s lesson.

Marin had gained a good ten feet of distance from Lindal before her aunt decided to reply. Reply and reprimand. “Slow down, child. It is rude to run in public. And I took a taxi, so that we could talk on the ride home. Talk and decide what to do about your current attitude.”

Marin stumbled a little, but otherwise didn’t reply. She absolutely refused to allow anything to put a damper on her spirit. As long as the crystal remained in her possession, she could handle any punishment.

Lindal sneered as she inquired, “Why in the world did you park so far away?”

Marin slowed and turned to walk backward. She couldn’t believe that Lindal chose to ask such a question. “I had hoped that by parking as far away as possible, I could avoid the humiliating gymnastics needed to re-enter my vehicle. That woman we passed a second ago? She was actually climbing in through her sun roof. I don’t know if this type of place is always this packed, but if so, they need more parking. I was lucky to find a spot, no matter how far away it is. But I admit that I concentrated on the area to the rear of the parking lot. Everyone fights for the ones closest to the store. I swear that broken down Toyota back there was circling the lot when I first arrived.”

Marin watched, as the poor rusted contraption made its rounds. She felt sorry for the car, and the driver. Mostly, she felt bad for everyone currently being forced to breathe in the ozone killing balls of smoke emanating from the Toyota.

“Turn around and walk correctly. They can have our spot… once we get there,” Lindal hissed. Her aunt ignored the opportunity to vent some of her rage on the circling motorist. The parking lot had so many cars that the grassy incline along the edges of the parking lot had begun to fill up with unrepentant motorist.

Marin turned and quickened her pace as she yelled, “I’ll just air the car out.” They were almost to Marin’s van, which always smelled of oil based paints and some before-the-invention-of-odorless substances. Mainly, Marin wanted to put off the fight building with each of Lindal’s hissed and clipped words.

“Don’t turn the car on. You’ll…” Lindal’s words ended on a grunt of pain.

Before Marin could turn to look, her aunt’s body flew over her head. She watched her aunt tumble through the air and land, with a sickening crunch, on the hood of her van. She realized that the frighteningly loud cry filling the air was coming from her own mouth, but Marin couldn’t stop. Lindal’s body slid to the ground like a rag doll, a line of blood marking her movements along the bright orange paint. Mere seconds had passed, but Marin felt like she had been frozen to the spot for hours, consumed by her disbelief.

The sound of squealing tires caught her attention, but Marin stood rooted to the spot and continued to scream. Her body refusing to obey her commands.

Eventually, the other sounds in the vast parking lot penetrated her haze. One moment, she was happily looking forward to exploring her new crystal, watching the dozens of other shoppers laugh and dream of the wonders to be found on this perfect spring day. Now, she watched as the only family she had ever known crashed onto the unforgiving asphalt. The need to complete a mission, or purchase her own crystal, started to feel pretty hollow.

Forcing her way out of her hysteria, Marin snapped her mouth closed and glanced around as she rushed forward. The Toyota she had pointed out to Lindal was moving in reverse as she ran for her aunt. No innocent circling for that murderous bastard now.

Marin looked back at Lindal, and her ears filled with a high pitched ringing. She tried to convince herself that this couldn’t be happening. She knew that POS Toyota was to blame, even without seeing the car ramming into her aunt’s vulnerable body.

Marin reached Lindal’s side, attempting to forget about assholes with toxic road rage, so that she could focus on her aunt’s wounds. As she fell to her knees, by Lindal’s broken body, she heard an engine being revved. She could smell burning rubber as she twisted to glance over her shoulder. A horrible metallic noise rent the air, as the Toyota bounced off the lane of cars, and angled in their direction.

Marin sat slack jawed as she realized that the man had the balls to make a second attempt. The Toyota was scrapping along the nearby cars, hell bent on committing death by rust bucket. She didn’t know if she was more upset that someone wanted to kill both her and Lindal, or that her van was about to be harmed in the process.

Marin couldn’t move Lindal to safety, and she refused to leave her alone. She glanced frantically around, searching for a miracle. Run down though the car was, it was still out of her weight class.

Marin twisted back, to face the oncoming vehicle completely, her hands in the air. A plea for mercy? A supplication or a surrender? Marin didn’t know. Time seemed to slow as the Toyota came closer. She felt her usually denied emotions rush to the surface, her anger leading the charge. She felt the rage heat along her skin, begging to be released.

Holding her ground, Marin remained kneeling by Lindal’s side. A blood-curdling scream left her mouth, and for the first time in her life, she allowed her feelings to come to the surface with destructive force. In that moment, Marin felt no fear, no shyness. Just rage. A rage that felt at home and welcoming as it exploded in the air. Even her confusion and denial – those feelings she felt most at home with – had been buried under this red-hot mixture of emotion.

A jolt of pain, from some invisible force, threw Marin to the ground. Lying on her back, her head pounding, she felt as if the invisible entity flowed from her body and zeroed in on the offending car. Her skin tingling, Marin watched, through eyes of indignation, as the tires on one side of the car suddenly left the ground. The Toyota was thrown into the air and onto the tires on its other side. The car slid off course, hitting the vehicles on the opposite side of the lane, and continued to tip, until it was rolling away from Lindal’s defenseless body. Crashing into the cars perched on the grassy incline, at the end of the lot, the Toyota rocked to a stop. It had looked like the car had been encased in some kind of protective shield, a wavering bubble of air, as it rolled away from Lindal’s position.

Marin shook her head to dispel the insanity. Shields didn’t work that way. Lindal had explained that a shield was an invisible defense, in the mind, to keep out unwanted thoughts and ideas. She felt the back of her head, wondering how hard she had managed to hit the asphalt. Did she have a concussion?

After the Toyota had slammed off the cars in the grass, tottering back and forth, it finally landing in the correct upward position. Marin didn’t know what had just happened, and at that moment, she didn’t care. She took a second to watch, as the Toyota clipped the back of a few cars, and miraculously sped away.

The smell of burning rubber and the sound of a hanging bumper, creating sparks along the pavement, were the only proof that this nightmare had ever happened. That and dozens of dented automobiles. The way the Toyota had rolled away from them, as if a giant was playing with his Tonka Trucks, would haunt Marin’s nightmares for a long time. She decided that the entire event needed to be firmly placed in her denial box, and she moved to check on Lindal and to call for an ambulance. She needed help; she needed help now.

Kyland Marcuson’s left eyebrow lifted, as he stood staring in disbelief. Seeing a woman with the power to move a few thousand pounds of metal, or even the brutal act of vehicular homicide, didn’t move him. These acts were common place to those of the Supernatural Community. The astounding number of people exiting their cars and the store, to stand around gawking also left him unmoved. Supes and Norms, supernatural beings without power, alike enjoyed a good train-wreck-worthy incident. Even the powerless humans enjoyed viewing tragedy.

After all this time, he had finally found her. Kyland had searched for Marin for more than twenty years. He had managed to locate her, only to watch as she fought for her life. Kyland shook his head and allowed the pull of the woman’s essence to lead him to her side. His Queen had given him this mission, saying only that she would be the one to save them from the Danshue—the evil Fae.

Once the Queen vanished, Kyland had made it his sole purpose in life to locate Marin, a small babe he knew nothing about. The end of his journey, and the child was now a beautiful woman, with more questions surrounding her than answers. Her blonde hair, big blue eyes, and button nose gave her a vulnerable look. A look that was obviously a lie.

Kyland also felt surprised at the lust tearing through his system. He was here to protect this woman, not bed her. Still, those curves… Marin had to be more than a foot shorter than his own 6’8″ height, but she was still built like a dream. A dream he wanted to memorize with hands, mouth, and tongue. Shaking his head to clear his thoughts, Kyland continued forward.

People stood on the sidelines, watching and waiting, afraid to step forward, to help. Kyland pushed and shoved people out of his way to reach the woman he suspected to be the woman he was searching for. When he’d undertaken this mission, more than two decades ago, he was told that the child he needed to find and protect would have no real power. Her biggest gift should have been an overabundance of sensitivity. She should have been as close to powerless as she could get, without being human or a Norm. Apparently, some very important information had been withheld.

On the other hand, Marin had appeared shocked as she watched the car’s near miss. Maybe she didn’t understand her abilities, abilities that she shouldn’t have. Kyland could see in here eyes a slight refusal to believe the reality she now found herself in. He had watched as she shook her head, physically pushing away her confusion.

Kyland was close enough now to feel the denial coming from her psyche in waves. Her emotions were so strong; he could barely focus on anything else. He could also see that the Queen had left out a thing or two about the child’s identity when they’d discussed this mission.

Damn, damn, damn. Right now, Kyland needed to check on Marin and the woman lying at her side. But he needed to move forward carefully. He didn’t want to frighten the young woman, especially after she had just been traumatized. He needed to save her friend, if possible, and slowly build a connection, a bond of trust. If she were the correct person, then… then the future of his people would depend on her. He didn’t understand, not completely, but the Queen had given him a name, a location, and a time frame. He needed to find Marin, somewhere within Earth-side, before her Transition.

Well, if this was Marin, he had the woman/child; he was in Kentucky, so he was Earth-side, just like the Queen’s prophecy; the time frame was the remaining key. Kyland had less than a month left to complete the first step. Hopefully, the rest would fall into place, and by the end of the year, the Queen would be returned.

Kyland had spent the last two decades learning every new medical procedure, every medical aid techniques of any discipline, as they were improved on. The Marin he was sent to retrieve had been kidnaped, and kidnap victims were rarely treated well. Why else would she be stolen at birth unless it was to harvest her power? Supe children could be used as batteries, for the sadistic and depraved. Evil men and women, or Danshue, that sought power above all else and were willing to do anything to obtain it.

Dropping to his knees, Kyland could see that the woman on the ground didn’t appear to be breathing. Time was short, but still he approached slowly. Perhaps the surrounding crowd of useless onlookers had the right idea. If he was correct, the beautiful blonde could toss him across the parking lot, if he surprised her.

“Do you need help?” Kyland slowly reached to check Marin’s friend for vitals, before tilting the head, to begin CPR. The woman he worked on was extremely small, broken, and bleeding. Her flaming red hair seemed familiar, but Kyland couldn’t worry about his patient’s identity. Not with a confused and wary Marin, watching his every move.

“Please… I don’t know… what to do… I can’t…” Marin didn’t know if she should trust this stranger, this mouthwatering man, but she needed help. Lindal needed help. She had already called 911 and told the operator what she could, but now her phone had disappeared. The best Finder the U.S. could offer, and she couldn’t even locate her own cell phone. She held her hand near the side of her aunt’s face, afraid to touch her. Didn’t the people in movies always stay on the phone when they called 911? She needed her phone. What was she— How could she—

Marin couldn’t breathe. She was screwing up. Lindal was hurt. She should have told the operator more. Couldn’t. Breathe.

“Do not worry. Just take a calming breath and work with me. I need you to stabilize her head for me. My name is Kyland, by the way, and I will do what I can to help, if you will let me.” Kyland took her hand, and it was suddenly easier to breathe. “Can you do that?”

Kyland had a manly beauty, one that sculptors would kill to etch. She found it hard not to stare at Mister Tall, Dark, and Handsome, her eyes continually jumping back to outline his features, even in the midst of her worry. He had to be nearly seven feet tall, and his eyes gleamed like flecks of coal.

When Kyland leaned forward to recheck Lindal for breath, Marin could see that his eyes were actually an extremely dark gray. His hair fell in a wave of black silk, to his shoulders, and his muscles looked edible in a glowing reddish brown tone.

Kyland had one of those year round natural tans that women the world over dreamed of. Marin would have assumed a Native American background, but there was just something more, something different, about him.

Marin gave herself a mental shake, to push his looks from her mind, and focus on the woman that had raised her. She would do anything and everything asked of her. She would follow Kyland’s lead and hope for the best.

Nodding her head rapidly, Marin moved to Lindal’s head to do as indicated. She had a purpose. The ambulance was coming, and Kyland would help Lindal until they arrived.

Marin hated the way that Lindal treated her, but she wanted distance and independence, not this. This couldn’t be happening. What if she lost the only family she…

Just as the panic started to take over again, Marin felt someone squeezing her hand. Kyland gave her comfort as his other hand rechecked for a pulse.

As the blonde did as instructed, Kyland continued compressions. He couldn’t think of her as Marin, not yet. There had to be another reason for her to look just like- Kyland took a deep breath, to focus on the here and now. He had cleared his patient’s airway, while sending a healing spell into her body. It would help, but whether it would be enough or not, he didn’t know. He had to get her breathing again if he hoped to save her.

Kyland had done two sets of compressions, and was bending to blow air into her lung, when the woman took a deep breath on her own. Her eyes snapped open. Eyes that he knew, hated, and could never forget.

“You…” The word slipped out of his mouth before Kyland could think about stopping himself. He barely managed to cut off his words before a barrage of her suspected crimes left his mouth.

Well, damn. Kyland hadn’t recognized the injured woman with her eyes shut, but he should have. The wrinkles were obviously an illusion, but the fire engine red hair, the small stature… and now, those liquid sliver-green eyes couldn’t be denied. Only one person had eyes the shade of mixed mercury and vibrant new grass. Lindal Rencoff. Murder, treason, the thief of power by painful means… the list of her suspected crimes went on and on. Lindal needed to be tried for crimes against the Queen and Fae alike, for being Danshue—a Fae willing to lose his or her soul in exchange for stolen power.

The Queen definitely hadn’t informed him that he would find the woman/child that he was looking for with the traitor Lindal Rencoff. What the hell was going on here? His mouth turned down; Kyland had to fight the urge to wrap his hands around Lindal’s neck.

Every Supe in the Supernatural Community believed that Lindal had been cut down, marked as one of the dead or missing, in the last Great War. Instead, she’d hid among a bunch of humans, with her kidnap victim— a woman the Fae people desperately needed. He ran his hands roughly over his face and looked to the heavens for some kind of sign.

Kyland’s gaze darted around to locate any other enemies but found only curious onlookers and banged up cars and trucks. He took a moment to decide if he should call in back up or not as his gaze went to Marin. Why had he been sent alone on this mission?

To answer that, he first needed to answer one every important question. Did the Queen fear her own people?

The fact that Kyland had been sent alone, to retrieve someone that deserved an armed escort, was pretty much answer enough. Had the Queen foreseen that she and her entire house would be cursed and hidden from the rest of the Fae, from the entire Supernatural Community, never to be seen again?

Kyland had been sent alone on this mission, and he had nearly failed. Watching the car closing in, he had known that he would not make it in time. Even moving out of phase—as one with the shadows—Kyland would have been too late. None of his personal magic could have stopped the car from taking the life of the woman he could feel calling out to his essence. He had spent over two decades in search of a poor defenseless child in need of protection, only to find that Marin had the ability to save herself.

The car had been pushed and flipped, as if unseen forces had been displeased. If it hadn’t been for his ability to sense the magic being used, he might have believed the unseen forces theory. After all, he had been told that Marin couldn’t reach, or use, her gifts yet. Dammit. If the power he had felt represented Marin’s untapped gifts, they would all be in a world of trouble if he couldn’t find a way to ease Marin’s power slowly past whatever had them blocked.

If Marin’s gifts exploded from their containment all at once… more than just her psyche and body were in danger. It would be like the magical version of an atomic bomb. Kyland had less than a month, and eventually time would run out. The block had to have been placed over Marin’s psyche, her power. A block Marin’s power had managed to break through, like it was child’s play, only to disappear completely once the danger was past.

Yep. Kyland was in deep and all out of paddles. This mission became more important with every passing second.

Chapter Two

Her perfect crystal now lost in the parking lot of Crystal Sights; Lindal was in surgery fighting for her life, and Marin gazed blankly at the ugliest green wallpaper she had ever seen. Hospital waiting rooms shouldn’t remind a person of moldy vomit. They should be peaceful and comforting. Reminders of the split pea soup incident from the Exorcist were neither peaceful nor comforting. Even a stark white would be more pleasant that the current color palate.

Marin feared that the need to scream and never stop would finally win out. She wanted answers but also needed to forget. Right this second, she’d settle for a nice friendly coat of paint. It would give her mind something to focus on while she waited for the doctors to fix her aunt.

Body shaking like she needed a large hit of the newest controlled substance, Marin pulled her knees up against her chest and rocked quietly in her less than comfortable chair. She glared at one of the chipped areas of vomit-itis paint. It had been hours of waiting with only her headache, stale coffee, and these horrendous walls to keep her company. Everyone else in the room had managed to fade into the background, her mind uninterested in their presence.

The door to the waiting room opened, causing Marin to glare in that direction. A man in hospital scrubs searched the room for someone. His mouth moved, not that Marin could hear anything over the pounding in her head that caused her ears to ring. The name tag proclaimed that this was Dr. Criss. He had a nice looking mouth, but the rest of his features remained out of focus.

Marin counted the handful of people waiting for news, shocked to realize that the room held a deep well of silence. Surely, there should be something to hear. The quiet murmur of loved ones consoling each other, the drone of the television, or even the gurgle of the coffee pot, but Marin caught nothing like that. She couldn’t even remember if the room had been so full when she first arrived.

The doctor looked straight at Marin and walked in her direction with purpose in his posture and compassion on his face. Was he speaking to her? Her feet dropped to the floor at the same time that her gaze sought out anyone else sitting nearby that could be his intended target. The warring emotions, to get answers and to deny that any of this was real, fought for supremacy.

Marin examined the people sharing the room with her closer. An elderly woman with two small children worked to console her youngest child. No more than two, her little face contorted in distress and hopeless anguish, as she sat clinging to her grandmother. Tears ran down her little rounded cheeks. Her face red and body shaking, the child ignored modern rules of society, and expressed her pain the only way that she knew how. It looked almost freeing. Still, she heard nothing.

Marin could see a man on a pay phone, another man holding a softly crying woman, and a few teens. But not a single sound managed to accompany their actions. Her eyes took in the expressions of pain and sadness, but her mind refused to allow her to hear their distress. That seemed wrong.

The doctor had nearly reached her side. Marin couldn’t see that as a positive sign. The paramedics had told her that things looked good; the beautiful stranger had promised everything would be fine before he had disappeared. Lindal’s breathing had seemed even and controlled when they’d pulled up to the emergency room doors. Marin just couldn’t see how anything good could come from five hours of uncertainty after all the positive lies.

The doctor stopped in front of her, his lips still moving. Maybe he had a tick or something. Marin fought the need to smile. The doctor’s brow crinkled, and he reached out to touch her face. Grasping her chin, he lifted her head up. When he moved closer, to look into her eyes, Marin jolted from the chair.

The world was suddenly rent by a mournful cry, a cry that only the young could dare make. Not yet fearful of what others will think, a child will throw her head back, and shriek her pain to the heavens. Marin wanted that freedom. The little girl with the head full of auburn curls and the extremely healthy lungs continued to cling to her grandmother. Her pain the first sound to shatter the unnatural silence of the waiting room.

The silence hadn’t been that bad, in a way. Marin preferred the denial.

“Miss Yarthine?” the doctor asked.

Dammit. Marin finally made eye contact with the doctor. She needed to do better. She needed to focus before she ended up with her very own hospital gown.

Afraid to speak, Marin just continued to stare. Wanting to release her own cathartic wails, she wrapped her arms protectively around her body, and managed a small nod. She felt something touch her shoulder and glanced back in the doctor’s direction, not remembering when she had turned away. This had to be shock. There was a constant buzz emanating from her temples, and that couldn’t be good either.

Marin’s head felt like a stranger. She could feel this ticking beat, as if her heart had managed to make the climb in to her head. The noise in her head kept changing. Sometimes, she felt like she had a few bees in residence, and at others she just knew that an angry band had taken to using the space between her ears for practice.

Did that mean she was in shock? Or maybe, Marin had hit her head harder than she’d realized. Someone had checked her out. She remembered…

Smiling kindly and reclaiming her attention, the doctor said, “Your aunt is unconscious at the moment. She hasn’t woken yet, so we’re keeping her in the ICU, at least until she wakes. Visiting hours are over until tomorrow afternoon, but I think we can let you come back to see her for a few minutes. Her brain received quite a trauma. All her other injuries appear stable for now, but the brain… we really can’t know more until she’s conscious.”

Marin didn’t know what to say. Her head bowed, and she covered her mouth with a shaking hand. Her knees wanted to buckle. She felt weak as the weight of so much worry lightened. With a barely repressed sob, Marin managed to choke out, “Thank you.” The news wasn’t perfect, but at least her aunt was still alive.

The doctor turned to leave, and Marin followed him and a nurse that had managed to go unnoticed. Somehow managing to find the strength to make her legs steady, as they went down the hall, Marin couldn’t help but feel impatient. She wanted to run, to see Lindal with her own eyes.

Maybe if Marin held Lindal’s hand, felt her precious warmth… Who was she kidding? Marin needed her aunt to open her eyes and give one of those frosty glares that she had perfected over the years.

Marin’s hand flew up to catch an inappropriate giggle, and the buzzing in her temple started pulsating to a new rhythm, but she didn’t care. She needed proof that Lindal was still alive, that her only family member would continue to make her life miserable.

The small room where they finally stopped, sat behind a glass wall, the privacy curtain only partially closed, so that the end of the bed could be clearly seen from outside. The crash cart sitting within easy reach of the door left a less than comforting ache in Marin’s chest. The sooner Lindal could be moved to a less threatening room, the better.

“Ten minutes. But then you’ll need to come back during visiting hours,” the nurse explained in a firm, but sympathetic voice. The doctor had already disappeared.

Marin could barely hear the nurse’s words; she seemed kind enough, but at that moment, Marin wanted to be alone. Seeming to understand, the nurse gave her another sympathetic look, and left Marin to peek around the curtain by herself.

Lindal’s small form, lying quietly in the midst of tubes and wires, barely filled half of the twin-size hospital bed. Her aunt had always been small, even shorter than Marin’s own five-foot-two-inches. In the hospital bed, the force that naturally radiated off Lindal’s every movement became subdued, and her strong personality lessened. Her aunt look abnormally vulnerable.

Rubbing her arms, Marin wanted to take a step away from the unreal sight; instead, she forced her hands to grip the footboard tightly. She had come so close to losing Lindal.

The paramedics had arrived quickly, but they never would have made it in time. Marin wasn’t stupid. Lindal hadn’t been breathing, and that meant one thing, and one thing only. Lindal had died. With only Marin to help her, she would have stayed that way. Stranger or not, Kyland had saved Lindal’s life.

Kyland had come out of nowhere and disappeared the same way. Marin shook her head, doubting that she would ever be able to find him or thank him. On one hand, some unnamed tension left her body at the thought that she would never have to face him again. Face the emotions he’d stirred. Still, his absence left a hole in her heart, and a choking thickness in her throat. Which made absolutely no sense. Marin knew nothing about this man. How did he cause confusion strong enough to overwhelm her mind? Marin shook her head. The who and where of Kyland were problems for another day. Right now, she needed to focus on Lindal.

Marin needed answers. Like why had they been targeted? The parking lot hadn’t exactly been lacking for vehicular violence victim contenders. There had been a group of at least four women, standing by their cars, chatting. If there was a target more deserving of vehicular rage, it had definitely been that group of women. They had finished shopping, and courtesy demanded that their parking spots were to be relinquished as soon as possible. Why not them?

The man—and Marin was only guessing that the driver was a man—had bypassed those without parking lot etiquette and zeroed in on Lindal. If she had continued her slow progress through the parking lot, would Marin be in this horrible room with its beeping monitors and bleached air instead of Lindal.

Staring down at her aunt’s unmoving form, Marin tried to find a place to rest her hand. She needed to touch her. She needed to know that the only person willing to take her in, after the death of her mother, was really here and still alive.

“They will find him, Lindal. He won’t get away with this,” Marin made her vow as quietly as possible, not wanting to disturb Lindal’s recovery.

Glancing up to keep tears from falling from her eyes, Marin noticed something swinging off of Lindal’s oxygen line. “What the…” It looked like a Barbie doll with wings, perhaps six inches tall. The odd little creature wore a loin cloth and sported some overly obvious male attributes. Was it wrong to be checking out the abs of someone no larger than a child’s toy?

His arms tugged and his muscles bunched as he attempted to make a knot in Lindal’s oxygen line. His silver skin tone went beautifully with his tri-colored wings— a mix of light purple, maroon, and gold. The little man didn’t seem to realize that Marin was staring at him.

“Stop,” Marin shouted. Dammit, this was a hospital. She needed to lower her voice. She also needed to go upstairs to the psych ward. Head trauma, shock, or hallucinations¼ something wasn’t right. If she told Lindal about this, her aunt would call her every kind of fool.

Hallucination or not, she grabbed the little man by the wings, pulled him from Lindal’s oxygen line, and tried to speak more calmly. “What do you think you’re doing?”

She finally had her figment’s attention. A striking, though small, pair of lavender eyes glared at her through overly long sandy brown bangs. On closer inspection, she could see that his hair was actually multicolored. It seemed to go from crystal white sand to bronzed gold.

“Well, answer me. What do you think you’re doing?”

“Waiting for you, of course.”

“What are you?” She was losing it. The buzzing in her temples was increasing. And she was now speaking to a figment of her imagination. Yep, she needed to be medicated.

The creature put its tiny fists on narrow hips. “A Sprite, of course. Don’t you know anything? I have my work cut out for me.” Now she was being insulted by her imagination. Great.

“Nope. Too Much,” Marin said and tossed the little man with wings out of the hospital window. She needed coffee. Either that or a large dose of Thorazine. Maybe both.

Wow… excellent write up!!

I have to thank Georgie Bolwell for a wonderful write up on her blog Books and Babble …  Head on over and check it out… She has a wonderful way with words…

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Georgie Bolwell!!!

I enjoyed answering her questions, and reading her responses to my answers were a treasure… Be sure to check out the rest of Georgie’s site as well, and experience her writing…

“My name’s Georgie and I’m a first year English Literature student at Cardiff University.

I’m using this blog as a way of practising my writing skills, editing my own work and to write about the things and issues that interest me. My main goal in life is to work for a publishing company, somewhere like Bloomsbury Press, Penguin and other places like that, so writing experience is key.

If you have any questions about me, my writing or have any requests, don’t hesitate to contact me…

Happy reading everyone :)” -Georgie

Blog Tour, almost at an end

Just a few more teasers for everyone… Dellani Oakes has posted all the Shocking Finds info, plus a few more teasers at the end of the post… I want to thank her for helping to get the word out…

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Check out the teasers Here and then stick around her site to check out Dellani’s writing… happy wordage everyone..

Contest to win a copy of Shocking Finds

Contest, contest, contest…

Hit C.D. Hersh’s Blog on Nov 6, and leave a comment on her Shocking Finds Post to enter to win a copy of Shocking Finds (A Finder’s Keepers Novel) … woo who… the contest will run until noon the following Monday… Then a randomly picked commenter will be chosen.

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Just add your comment about the blog and wait to see if you are the lucky winner… happy wordage everyone…

More From the Blog Tour…

Woowho.. and tour keeps rollin’ on 😛

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Kathryn Kane was kind enough to jump on my blog tour… head on over to her Site … She did an excellent Author interview… even managing to ask a few questions I’ve missed in my past two months of blabbing all things Tracey 😛

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So excited peeps… Shocking Finds is doing better than I had ever hoped … Happy Wordage, Tracey

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