Monthly Archives: September 2012

Working through the hard times…Elves and SFFS for 9-22

In The Elf Child, several of the characters struggle to overcome very real personal crises. Jelani and Astan find themselves pregnant without the intention to be so, and find that the Circle has conspired against them. Grigor struggles to survive as an outcast from the clan. Lane and Crispy…well, they just have issues.

But the character who has the longest journey is Daven Talvi. He’s totally lost his direction and must start again:

Jelani and Astan had asked him to put a protective spell on the door, something to keep others out, but he’d refused. The Circle worried that Jelani would use the spell to keep them from the elf child. Instead, his omission had enabled the evil ones to gain access and take the cuddly infant that was dear to them all.

            I failed you, Jelani. I failed you.

            He’d lost so many who were close to him in his service to the elf clan, friends, family, even Astan’s mother, Veraena. Each loss carved a small chink in his courage and determination to persevere for the greater good, and the chinks added up. Knowing at last that this tragedy could be laid square at his door broke Daven’s strong heart.

            “Lady of the Forest, show me the way,” he said, taking the small bag of runes from his pocket. “I need your guidance.”

The Blurb:

The moment Astan Hawk accepts his clan’s challenge to protect the young Elf Queen Jelani, trouble dogs his heels. Jelani’s human upbringing clashes with clan tradition and spurs dangerous intrigues within the Circle of Elders.    Seeking revenge against Jelani for the loss of his mentor Bartolomey, outcast Grigor Biren finds powerful elf mages deep within the forest and sets out to prove himself worthy to learn their secrets.      When Astan finds that his father Daven supports the agenda of the Circle, he has no choice but to turn to Jelani’s human friends for help.  Paranoid Crispy, empathetic Iris, and computer whiz Lane complicate Jelani’s unexpected pregnancy and the young queen’s attempts to rule her people. After the child is born, everything that could go wrong does.      Can Astan carry through on his promise to keep Jelani safe when the whole world seems to have turned against them?

Read a excerpt here!    http://www.dragonflypubs.com/excerpts/elfchild.html

Here’s a review:

“The Elf Child, second in the Clan Elves of the Bitterroot Series, can be read as a stand-alone, but is probably a richer reading experience if read in sequence. Lyndi Alexander has created a very interesting story that occupies a rather unique niche in the fantasy genre; not exactly urban fantasy, but with hints of same. I like her main characters, but like the secondary ones even more. Former wards of the state Lane and Crispy are unique and extremely likable. The overall story, which could have gotten sloppy at a couple of points, avoids falling into traditional pitfalls and instead, flows along, smoothly at times and with an urgency at others which grabs the reader and pulls him/her along in a page-turning frenzy as her well-crafted world grows real enough to create a nice movie in one’s mind. I am certainly looking forward to the third installment in the series and plan to go back and read the first one so I can have a complete understanding of what happened to set up this book. The Elf Child is highly recommended for fantasy readers who like a contemporary setting and plenty of action.” ~ reviewed by John R. Clark (public librarian) for TCM Reviews. | http://www.tcm-ca.com/?p=9007 |

Find out more here: http://clanelvesofthebitterroot.com/the-elf-child

Find more great science fiction and fantasy snippets at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday’s main page. I love this group of authors–what great imaginations!

Advertisements

Meet Hydra author Rachel Hunter!

As the final day of the Hydra Blog Hop arrives, we have young author Rachel Hunter with us, with her book Empyreal Fate, first in the Llathalan Annal series.

Author Bio:

   Rachel Hunter has always been fascinated with words and the intricate way in which they combine. Since a child, she has been an avid writer, winding vibrant tales and elaborate stanzas on folded bits of paper. As the years passed, her love of words never died; her adoration for reading fared no equal. Always with her nose in a book, Rachel took fondly to works spanning all genres. Yet it was the compelling grasp of fantasy and science fiction that wrenched her fascination above all.
    In 2007, Rachel was selected a state winner of the Minnesota Promising Young Writers Program. Accordingly, her winning poem, It All Starts with Creativity, was published in An Anthology of Poetry by Young Americans. Senior year of high school proved another momentous year. A winner of the Oklahoma Young Writers Competition, Rachel was awarded with publication of her Sestina of Elven Regret in the 2010-2011 anthology, Growing Voices. In March of 2012, Rachel published her first short story with Trestle Press, titled, Perfect Nothing, which recounted her harrowing relationship with an eating disorder and was also fueled by her passion for psychology. But her writing does not end there. While currently pursuing a degree in nursing at the University of Oklahoma, she aspires also to illuminate the creative spark of eager readers. In her desire to incite intrigue, she is exploring new worlds and creating vast empires of her own. Empyreal Fate is only the first in her Llathalan Annal series. Indeed, it is only the beginning.


Empyreal Fate Blurb:

Filled to the brim with forbidden love, an ancient evil, and a nation in disrepair, Empyreal Fate is a tale of riveting bravery and mortal corruption.

 

The land of Llathala lingers on the brink of war between men and elves, a dark history surrounding each race. Stirred by tensions of the land, a shadow of the past reemerges, taking precedence in reality and consuming the very soul of mans’ mortal weakness. Darrion, the son of a poor laborer, is ensnared in a hostile world, forced to choose between loyalty to his king or the counsel of the elves. Yet Fate has other plans in store, tying his course to Amarya, an elven royalblood of mysterious quality and unsurpassable beauty. But this forbidden connection incites betrayal from members of their own kin, marking them as traitors to the crown. In a land torn asunder, only Fate’s decree can allow such love to coexist with an ancient enmity.

 

Behold: A Llathalan Annal: Empyreal Fate – Part One.



Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/Empyreal-Fate-Llathalan-Annal-Volume/dp/0615638589
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Empyreal-Fate-Llathalan-Rachel-Hunter/dp/0615638589


Empyreal Fate Excerpt:

Drevan’s loins grew hot as he watched the sway of the woman’s body, and
he felt the urge to see her full – to gaze upon her womanly figure and marvel at her
sensitive places. It was not often he felt such appetence, and he relished it now,
taking pleasure in the maddened spur that gripped him.


            He wet his lips as she flicked her bronze hair to the side and stared at the
exposed flesh of her pale neck. He nearly swooned on the spot – the heat of his body
intense – and had to grasp hold of the trunk to keep straight. Then, from beneath a
tumbled lock, the woman’s pointed ear was revealed. Drevan caught his breath midthroat,
nearly choking. He bit his tongue as reality struck a blow. This woman –
she
belonged to the elves!

-–Scene from Empyreal Fate– Part One of Rachel Hunter’s Llathalan Annal series.

 

Contact Links:

Blog: http://www.rachel-m-hunter.blogspot.com

Website: http://www.rachel-m-hunter.yolasite.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rachel-Hunter/170131499766376
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/young_author
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Empyreal-Fate-Llathalan-Annal-ebook/dp/B007WWB24W

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5762735.Rachel_Hunter

 

And now, Hydra author Erin Danzer!

What Inspired Into the Spiral

 There were several things that went into creating my upcoming novel, Into the Spiral. The first was that I needed to take control of my life again instead of letting life pass me by. I was at a low point in my life, but when I made the decision to once again pursue my love of writing and make it more than just a hobby, something changed within me; I had purpose again. That revelation led to, “I want to write a book, or series of books, as good as or better than Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments.” If you haven’t read those novels yet, I highly recommend them; I can’t say enough good things about the action, adventure and romance within their pages.

 The next thing that came to mind was spontaneous combustion. I wanted to write a novel about a teen girl on the verge of exploding due to her familial obligations and what little control she feels she has over her life. That’s when Ronnie stepped into my life. Here was a girl who, on her fifteenth birthday, goes to get a tattoo as rebellion against her mom’s overbearing presence, her older brother’s shadow, and a best friend who doesn’t realize how much she’s in love with him. Later, it was pointed out to me that Ronnie’s physical appearance was inspired by a girl I worked with, a very good friend of mine named Lindsay. What do you think?

 

   

Gavin, the half-human alien who is sent to Earth to retrieve Ronnie, was inspired by pretty much every book boyfriend I’ve had in the last two years. I wanted someone with a little snark, a good heart, extremely handsome and kickass moves. Admittedly, Jace Wayland is at the top of the list for inspiration for Gavin’s character.

My artist, Amanda Pfender, used Gaspard Ulliel as inspiration for Gavin’s picture from the description I’d given her: “Ronnie looked and gave a little wave before turning to walk into her room only to find her way blocked by yet another guy. This school seemed to be crawling with hotties! This one was only a few inches taller than her, kind of short for a guy, with straight black hair and dark slightly slanted eyes. He wore black cargo pants, a black t-shirt that did nothing to hide his six-pack abs, and black combat boots. He looked her up and down and arched an eyebrow as he stepped aside.”

How do you think Amanda did?

 (from    http://www.ohlalaparis.com/ohlalaparis/gaspard_ulliel/   )

 

One final inspiration comes from my dad. While writing the novel, I knew Gavin was from another planet but because he is half-human, I didn’t think of him as an alien. Only until it was pointed out to me, did I realize I was writing a sci-fi/fantasy novel. I say this inspiration comes from my dad because he is still big into science fiction and fantasy type things, such as Dragon Riders of Pern, Issac Asimov, Star Trek and much more. I grew up surrounded by those things, so I guess it is only natural that they eventually seep into my writing.

 I hope you all have enjoyed getting to see what inspired Into the Spiral and will join Ronnie and Gavin on their adventure this November. Thank you, Babs, for having me today!

Erin Danzer wrote her first book at 10-years-old for a Young Authors competition, where she was awarded an Honorable Mention and discovered a passion for the written word. She’s written several novels and short stories since that spark ignited. She writes a monthly short story serial, The Cassandra Serafin Chronicles, posting alternately on her blog and in Literary Lunes bi-monthly online magazine. Erin resides in Racine, Wisconsin, with her husband, two children, and their cat.

 Thanks for visiting, Erin! Glad to have you. Best wishes with this lovely story.

A warm welcome to Hydra author Melissa Goodman!

  As part of the ongoing Hydra Blog hop this week, I have Missy Goodman here for a visit. Melissa Goodman was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky. She’s a diehard member of the University of Kentucky’s Big Blue Nation and a lover of all things Nascar, reality television and fairytale endings. She can be contacted at MelissaGoodmanWriter@ gmail.com.

Her new book is called It’s Your Love, and if the cover is any indication, it ties a whole lot of Melissa’s interests all together in a nice package.

Here’s her excerpt:

“It’s about time,” said Kade. He was leaning with his back against the wall. He had not bothered to glance her way. He came across as if it was completely natural for him to be standing there.

“What are you doing?” She looked over her should just to be sure that God wasn’t playing a cruel joke and the blond was behind her.

“I’m an ass,” he said as if it was the only explanation needed.

So she agreed with him, “And?”

Kade stood up straight. With his hang dog expression Allie fought the urge to forgive him on the spot.

            “I’m sorry.”

“I didn’t mean to pry. I’m sorry.”

“I live a very public life. There are some things I just like to keep private.”

“You don’t have to explain,” she said, “I understand.”

 He held out his hand and gave her a wink. “So what now? Do we start over?”

His hand was Kade himself. Warm, strong with the right mixture of soft and rough. Touching him felt right. It felt like nothing could go wrong as long as she was in his embrace. It felt as if Allie had come home. If he didn’t feel the same, God help her.

Kade let out a breath that he wasn’t aware of holding when she took his hand. When Allie left the table he had considered what she said. He had even gone as far as to start his way over to the blond. About ten feet away he changed directions. He never walked away from a sure thing. He especially didn’t leave a woman he knew was willing for one that had just dumped him. Waiting outside the ladies’ room was agonizing. Kade had done his best to look like he was doing anything other than waiting for a woman. When the blond and her friends passed by trying to catch his eye Kade knew that he had dodged a bullet.

Then Allie appeared and Kade knew. It amazed him how wrong people were. He didn’t hear bells and whistles, what he heard was a soft voice that called to his soul. A missing piece he hadn’t been aware was missing until she placed her hand in his.

Sounds like a great read, Missy! Best wishes and thanks for visiting!

Lyndi

Buy links:

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/178704

http://www.amazon.com/Its-Your-Love-ebook/dp/B008H50OLU/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1347397290&sr=1-1&keywords=melissa+goodman

Welcome Hydra author Dianne Gardner!

As part of this week's Hydra Publications author blog hop, today I'm hosting fantasy writer Dianne Gardner and her book Deception Peak.
 

Synopsis

The first book of a trilogy, Deception Peak is a young adult adventure fantasy about a teenager, Ian Wilson, who follows his father through a portal that magically appears on their computer screen. They travel into a deceptively beautiful Realm, where horses run free, the wind sings prophetic melodies, and their computer avatars come to life. But when the two are separated, Ian is abducted by a tribe of dragon worshipers and is forced to find his courage. As he struggles for his freedom and embarks on a perilous search to find his father, Ian meets the true peacekeepers of the Realm. It's then that he learns there is a greater purpose for being there.

Link to the Deception Peak book trailer: http://youtu.be/7nhN62CmJsI

 
And a teaser link as well : http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0090009/photos/77081516@N03/7842689196/

Excerpt:

They came to a bend lined with thick brush that rose over their heads. The passage led them through giant firs into a part of the forest wild with sword ferns and fallen trees.  The rapping of a woodpecker hollowing a rotten trunk echoed through the thicket. The whisper of wind brushed the tree limbs high above his head, causing dots of sunlight to dance on the forest floor. Ian was awed by the forest’s beauty, yet he was terrified by what might await them at the next crook in the trail.

To learn more about this book or the author, Dianne Gardner, see her amazon author page or contact her directly:
 
 

Welcome Hydra author R.S. Hunter!

Thanks for being with us today. First, would you tell us a bit about yourself? What area of the country do you live in, do you have a family, pets, etc. Are you a coffee fiend, or do you have another “addiction” you must have on your desk at all times?  

It’s great to be here. I’m R.S. Hunter, a science fiction, fantasy, and horror author from sunny San Diego. I live in the suburbs so I use writing as a way to escape them.

 Unlike a lot of writers I know, I don’t drink coffee. However, I am a sucker for a good craft beer. (One of the perks of living in San Diego). All I need when I write is my laptop and my headphones. That’s what you’ll find on my desk, which also doubles as my kitchen table.

 Tell us about your new novel, coming in September from Hydra Publications. 

My debut novel, The Exile’s Violin, the first book of the Tethys Chronicles, is a steampunk adventure tale that follows a young woman’s quest to unravel the mystery surrounding her parents’ murder. Along the way she teams up with bored socialite Clay Baneport, and the two of them discover a conspiracy that threatens the fate of the world.

 How would you best describe your books?

 I have a lot of experience with video games and writing about them, so I think because of that, my books have a very strong visual quality to them. A lot of times when I write, I try to picture how the scene would look in a movie or in a game.

 The Exile’s Violin has clear steampunk influences along with parts that feel like action/adventure movies. But I’ve also been told that some parts of it have some noir influences. I wasn’t trying to channel that when I wrote the book and characters, but I can’t say I’m complaining!

 What is your favorite genre to write? To read?

 My favorite genres to write and read are speculative fiction. Hands down. I’ve been in love with genre fiction ever since I saw Star Wars as a small child. I also like horror a little bit, but it comes in third after SFF. To clarify, I like horror books. Horror movies on the other hand scare the hell outta me. No thank you.

 I wrote The Exile’s Violin and its sequel, Terraviathan, because they were the books I wanted to write at the time. I don’t try to chase trends or try to jump on the next big thing. I write what I like—explosions, science fiction, fantasy, gun fights, sword fights, etc.—and I just try to make sure it ends up being the best damn book I’m able to produce.

 

What do you most like about writing? Least like? When did you first know you wanted to be an author?

 I love being able to create new worlds and characters. That’s one of the best parts about speculative fiction; I’m not hampered by real locations and people.

 Many other writers out there all say things like they started writing when they were 4 etc. etc. Not me. I’ve loved reading all my life, but I didn’t start writing fiction until college. I asked the professor of my World Literature class if I could write a story instead of writing a final paper. She said yes. I wrote the story. Passed the class. Workshopped the story the next semester, and then it became the first thing I ever had published.

 Do you belong to any writing groups? Are there any writing websites you find particularly useful?

 I want to find a local SFF writing group that focuses on novels rather than short fiction, but I haven’t had any luck yet. As far as websites go, I like Absolute Write and Goodreads. I also have a bunch of “name generator” websites bookmarked. Those sites are life savers.

 Is there any special music you like to listen to while writing? How does it inspire you?

It all depends on my mood. Sometimes I listen to videogame music, remixes, and electronica. Other times I’ll listen to heavy metal or classic rock. I have to have music on while writing though. Silence and me are enemies.

 Tell us a little about your path to publication. How many books have you published? How many stories did you write before selling one?

 The first piece I had published was a short story called “Runner” in the Abaculus II science fiction and fantasy anthology. The Exile’s Violin will be my first published novel. I know it’s incredibly rare to have your first novel also be your first one published, but the book has undergone significant changes between when I first wrote it and where it’s at today.

 What are you writing now? What’s next for you—will you be making personal appearances anywhere our readers can find you?

 Right now I’m working on revising and polishing Terraviathan, the sequel to The Exile’s Violin. Unfortunately due to financial reasons, I won’t be able to travel to any conventions. There might be a few local signings around the San Diego area, but there’s nothing definite yet.

 Readers can visit my website (http://rshunter-author.com) for more information about me and my work. And of course, follow me on Twitter (http://twitter.com/rshunter88). I love talking about writing, speculative fiction, videogames, TV, and just about anything on there.

THE STORY:

 
Why hire mercenaries to kill an innocent family just to obtain one little key? That question haunts Jacquie Renairre for six years as she hunts down the people responsible for murdering her parents.
 
Not even accepting an assignment to investigate a conspiracy that aims to start a war can keep her from searching for the key. Armed with her father’s guns and socialite Clay Baneport, she continues her quest for answers abroad.
 
With the world edging closer to disaster, Jacquie is running out of time to figure out how the war, the key, and ancient legend are intertwined. The fate of the world hinges on her ability to unravel both mysteries before it’s too late.

 

Thanks so much for coming by today–steampunk is definitely an up and coming genre, and I’m sure this book will be fabulous!   Lyndi

Meet Hydra author Kate Lynd!

As part of this week’s “Getting to Know You” blog hop for the Hydra Authors, we kick off with Kate Lynd. Welcome, Kate!

Growing up I loved all forms of escapism. Film, books, television. It was all the same to me. And I always, given my background, wanted to be rescued, but as I got older I found the victim role to be less appealing, and I wanted a bad ass heroine to be. And I found myself, whenever I wrote, casting the hero as my favorite actor (high school it was Scott Bakula, how I loved Quantum Leap), and me as the heroine. That still true today.

 In my most recent release, GLADIATOR, I chose Daniel Craig. To be honest most times I choose Daniel Craig. He’s such a brute force and has this bad ass quality that won me over in Casino Royale and his tender side flashed a bit in that film too. Of course an easy pick would have been Russell Crowe. And at one point I might have picked him, but these days it’s all about Daniel.

 GLADIATOR tells the tale of Tristan Shane, a man who in an effort to avoid fighting loses his family in a swift act of brutality and is enslaved and forced to fight to the death for the mob’s and the new regime’s pleasure. Until one night the queen comes to him and demands the unthinkable, murder her innocent sister for fear she is the Healer prophesized believed to be sent to usher in a new world of equality and healing.

 Tristan was a great hero to write about. His heart twisted and jaded, the Healer changes everything for him, and for the first time since the loss of his family he begins to believe their might be hope for him. To say much more would be to give away what was so much fun to write about him. And seeing Daniel Craig as this character was easy for me. I was on so much caffeine while penning this sometimes I forget what writing some passages were like. But I remember thinking I hope people really like this story. But then, don’t all authors feel that way?

 My heroes now are less soft and have more of a world weariness to them. And my heroines my have been through hell, but they don’t feel sorry for themselves and maybe have an edge all their own. I hope you pick up GLADIATOR. It’s my favorite book I’ve written to date. It’s out now. And the second book, ORACLE, is targeted for March of next year. But that’s another blog.

Leave a comment and I’ll be sure to answer you. I love hearing from my readers. Or even potential readers. Until then, happy scribbles.

 

BUY LINK:  http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_0_12?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-text&field-keywords=gladiator+kate+lynd&sprefix=gladiator+ka%2Caps%2C194

For more information:

http://Creative-Chatter.blogspot.com 

Hydra Publications blog hop! Come meet the authors and books of Hydra Publications this week!

Looking forward to hosting Amy McCorkle (Monday), R.S. Hunter (Tuesday, Dianne Gardner AND Beth Ann Masarik on Wednesday, Missy Goodman (Thursday), Erin Danzer (Friday) and Rachel Hunter (Saturday). Please stop by every day and check out their books and personal stories, leave comments, let them know how much we all appreciate writers.

 I will then be featured on Monday at the blog home of Tony Acree, Tuesday with Tricia Ballad, Wednesday at Melissa Goodman’s, Friday with Michael Turner and Saturday with James Peercy.  So you’ll get to learn a little bit more about me and how LOVE ME, KISS ME, KILL ME came to be created and published. This is a small publishing house, but it’s growing by leaps and bounds, publishing a lot of fantasy and paranormal romance-type books, many of which had been on the Amazon top 100 lists. Don’t miss your chance!

SFFS for September 8– how do you get to be a super-elf?

Today’s entry at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday hearkens back to the most recent book in the Clan Elves of the Bitterroot series, THE ELF MAGE.  Elf Vez and his mother have been reunited after a long separation, and he hopes to learn magic and win power from her. But first he must come to understand the power structure of the clan–and he knows that most of what he’s heard so far has been lies:

Vez had been taught mages had greater power than any individual elf of the clan, but they were not taught by the Circle, those old dried up witches who believed they controlled their little elven world. They controlled nothing. This, his mother Veraena had told him, saying that several powerful mages existed in and about the mountains, elves who had evolved past ordinary magic and elven skills, and they were the reason the elves still lived.

            “Long ago, Vez, very special nians and neris studied the traditions of the clan, and learned the deepest secrets the Lady of the Forest had to share.” In the reflected firelight, her face lit with excitement as she shared the tales. “When they’d learned all the Elders could teach them, they went to the earth itself, which taught new lessons. Clearing the mind, clearing the heart, becoming one with the essence of natural things opened the door for them, the santwarja.”

            “A true door, Mother, a gateway to a higher existence?” Vez remembered his heart racing with elation. What marvelous creatures these Intalus must be, how powerful, how able to help others, to improve the status of all elves.

 

Of course, with great power comes great responsibility–or so they say. And power can be used for good or for evil. Which might Vez choose, if he has the opportunity to study this great magic? Find out in THE ELF MAGE.

Find out more about THE ELF MAGE at the Clan Elves  tab above, or at http://clanelvesofthebitterroot.com –buy links at Dragonfly Publishing, Inc.

Find more great science fiction and fantasy snippets at Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday’s main page–enough to keep you inside from the rain all morning!

%d bloggers like this: