Weekend Writing Warriors ~ Don’t You Remember Me?

Wow, is it really Sunday again? I guess it must be because we’re both here in cyberland, waiting to read fabulous fiction.  So, Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors!  I’ve been sharing from my latest release, Death by Starlight, an m/m urban fantasy set in Seattle.  Zeke the dark elf and Alistair the disreputable shaman have been searching for Mellosa the not-so-friendly mermaid out on the Salish Sea.  They  find her, and Zeke notices she’s not quite the charming little mermaid type one might expect.

***

Mellosa’s eyes were huge, mouth wide and full of sharp teeth, including incisors that would put any vampire to shame. Her hair wasn’t really hair but a living, breathing part of her, more akin to fronds or feathery tentacles then the dead strands that covered a human’s head.

Her fingers were webbed, and fins sprouted from her shoulders and biceps. Still, as she drummed her fingers against the gunwale, it was easy to see how a lonely man or woman might become entranced by her.

“Why have you called me from my hunting?” she asked, speaking directly to Zeke in a high, almost screechy voice. Gills on her long neck fluttered softly.

Alistair sank slowly to the bench. “Mellosa, my love, don’t you remember me?”

“Of course I remember you, smelly old man.” The way she emphasized man made it clear she considered the word an insult.

***

 

Edge of Night 2: Death by Starlight

In Betwixt and Between, Ian and Zeke fought a battle against the queen of the dark realm in order to be together. Now, when they think they might settle into as normal a life as elves living among humans might be able to expect, a new enemy threatens to tear them apart. While Zeke helps the shaman Alistair in his hunt for an elusive mermaid, Ian is called to confront a wicked nymph preying on tourists along Seattle’s waterfront. Zeke and Ian soon discover that the defeated Queen Ysolde has spread her evil into the sea realms, and danger lurks beneath every wave, but it is too late to stop an escalating series of confrontations that lead to disappearances, death and the possible end of light in this world.

As Ysolde plots revenge and a mysterious prince seeks to win Ian for himself, the ancient war between light and dark sweeps Ian and Zeke into its maelstrom of hate, testing their trust of each other to the utmost.

***

“I love this author’s imagination and skill, from the magical, emotional, and erotic nuances of the romantic pair, the details of the underground world of the svarta, the remote and glacial world of the liosa, and the characters that support or thwart them. Highly recommended!” ~ Velvet Panic

Amazon

Currently on sale for $3.74 at  Loose ID

Books2Read (nifty link that will show you all the places you can purchase the ebook)

Betwixt and Between: Edge of Night Book 1 is available at these retailers:  Amazon   Kobo   Barnes & Noble  Books2Read

***

This post is part of an ongoing blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Every Sunday, participating authors post eight to ten sentences from a published work or perhaps their current work in progress. Then we hop to our fellow warriors’ blogs and check out all the fabulous fiction that’s happening! I heartily invite you to participate as a reader, writer, or both. It’s a great way to discover your next favorite book. Click here or use the address: http://www.wewriwa.com

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ You Know You Want It

Hey, look!  It exists!

 

Cover by April Martinez

 

Hello and welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors.  Death by Starlight released on Tuesday, and it has a cover and pages and everything.  Sometimes we authors get a little nervous, but then magic happens and there’s this book.

So, on to the snippet.  I’ve been sharing from the scene where Zeke and Alistair go out on Alistair’s little motor boat in search of the mermaid Melissa, who Alistair has been crushing on most of his long life.  This picks up a little bit after last week’s snippet.

***

“C’mon, Mellosa,” Zeke muttered. “You know you want it. Why else have you been hanging out in these human-infested waters, baiting and teasing this sorry excuse for a shaman?”

“What’s the rush?” Alistair asked, leaning over the other side.

“Ian’s about to get himself in trouble.”

“So what else is new?”

They rode the tide in silence, the slap of waves against the boat and the rush of wind the only sound. The clouds parted slightly, allowing a bit of moonlight to lighten the sky and outline the dark bulk of the Olympic mountain range and the landmasses to either side of them. The lights of Port Angeles peppered the distant shore.

The mermaid lure was now a mere pinprick, a remote star in an upside-down sky.

***

Edge of Night 2: Death by Starlight

Ian and Zeke fought a battle against the queen of the dark realm in order to be together, but just when they think they might settle into as normal a life as elves living among humans might be able to expect, a new enemy threatens to tear them apart. While Zeke helps the shaman Alistair in his hunt for an elusive mermaid, Ian is called to confront a wicked nymph preying on tourists along Seattle’s waterfront. Zeke and Ian soon discover that the defeated Queen Ysolde has spread her evil into the sea realms, and danger lurks beneath every wave, but it is too late to stop an escalating series of confrontations that lead to disappearances, death and the possible end of light in this world.

As Ysolde plots revenge and a mysterious prince seeks to win Ian for himself, the ancient war between light and dark sweeps Ian and Zeke into its maelstrom of hate, testing their trust of each other to the utmost.

Amazon

Loose ID

***

 

Betwixt and Between: Book 1 is available at these retailers:  Amazon   Kobo   Barnes & Noble  Books2Read

***

This post is part of an ongoing blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Every Sunday, participating authors post eight to ten sentences from a published work or perhaps their current work in progress. Then we hop to our fellow warriors’ blogs and check out all the fabulous fiction that’s happening! I heartily invite you to participate as a reader, writer, or both. It’s a great way to discover your next favorite book. Click here or use the address: http://www.wewriwa.com

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ That’s Him All Right

wewriwa

Greetings and welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors!  I’ve been away for awhile but I had a good reason.  And here is that reason:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Yup. Best writing retreat ever!

But I’m back now and ready for business.  I’m continuing with a scene from my latest release, Matthias.  Dylan, a reporter, is finding out from his senior editor that the story they were doing on Matthias has been shut down, for mysterious reasons.

***

Amanda crossed her arms over her chest and took a deep breath. She glanced over her shoulder. This late on a Friday afternoon, the usually teeming newsroom was mostly empty. “If you ask me, Krall’s influence has reached this paper.”

“You think Marley killed the story because—”

“Because he was ordered to from on high. Yeah, I do.”

Despite her anger Amanda leaned over Dylan’s desk to inspect the photo he’d enlarged on his desktop.

“That’s him all right. No man should be that good-looking.”

***

matthiasfs_v2

Matthias: Order of the Black Knights ~

From Louisiana swamp rat to revivalist huckster to skilled con artist, Matthias Krall clawed his way out of poverty using his natural gifts of grift and manipulation to become the leader of an exclusive retreat center. Exploiting the guise of spiritual guru, Matthias seduces the rich and powerful into turning over their lives and fortunes to his control. But wealth and a small cadre of loyal followers can’t protect Matthias from the betrayal he knows is imminent. Everyone wants what Matthias has, except for one man who wants to destroy it. Dylan Connelly is a reporter who’s determined to prove the charismatic recluse is not only a fraud but a murderer.

Irresistibly drawn to Dylan despite the warnings in his gut, Matthias lures Dylan to his island retreat, determined to destroy his enemy once and for all.

Check out this great review! “I have to commend Alexis Duran because this story truly sucked me in and wouldn’t let go. As much as I wanted to put it down, I just couldn’t. ” 5 Stars from Bayou Book Junkie

Purchase at Dreamspinner Press

Purchase on Amazon

Order of the Black Knights

Every century has seen its knights, but they are not always seen. Some of them do what must be done—getting their hands dirty when no one else is willing. Assassins and antiheroes who work from the shadows, they are called the Black Knights. From the time of the society’s creation in the 1100s, these men are cursed to repeat their lives of bloodshed. But for each knight, there is one who can bring out the man that waits inside and break the cycle. The question is whether or not the knight will kill his true love before he figures it out.

***

This post is part of an ongoing blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Every Sunday, participating authors post eight to ten sentences from a published work or perhaps their current work in progress. Then we hop to our fellow warriors’ blogs and check out all the fabulous fiction that’s happening! I heartily invite you to participate as a reader, writer, or both. It’s a great way to discover your next favorite book. Click here or use the address: http://www.wewriwa.com

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ Striking Range

wewriwa

Hi, everybody!  Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors. I missed last week due to blogging overload. Matthias released on the 2nd and my book tour launched this past week, so I have to admit I just ran out of words. Hate it when then happens.  But I’m back and happy to be here, carrying on for a while with Matthias.  I pick up where I left off last time.  Dylan, a reporter, is having a talk with his boss Amanda about the subject of their current investigation, Matthias Krall.

***

Dylan wisely resisted mentioning his crush on Matthias. “I had a class with him when I was a sophomore. It was an upper-level course, so I assumed he was a senior.”

“And of course you took advanced classes,” Amanda huffed. “Listen, boy wonder, the plug has been pulled on the Rising Star story—pure speculation, no hard facts, according to Marley.”

Amanda’s eyes blazed, and she looked like she wanted to hit something. Dylan rolled his chair back until he was out of striking range.

“He wasn’t registered, he just attended classes. Either he was improving his mind or preying on rich kids, or both.”

Amanda’s lips thinned as she processed this.

***

matthiasfs_v2

Matthias: Order of the Black Knights ~ Release date November 2, 2016

From Louisiana swamp rat to revivalist huckster to skilled con artist, Matthias Krall clawed his way out of poverty using his natural gifts of grift and manipulation to become the leader of an exclusive retreat center. Exploiting the guise of spiritual guru, Matthias seduces the rich and powerful into turning over their lives and fortunes to his control. But wealth and a small cadre of loyal followers can’t protect Matthias from the betrayal he knows is imminent. Everyone wants what Matthias has, except for one man who wants to destroy it. Dylan Connelly is a reporter who’s determined to prove the charismatic recluse is not only a fraud but a murderer.

Irresistibly drawn to Dylan despite the warnings in his gut, Matthias lures Dylan to his island retreat, determined to destroy his enemy once and for all.

Check out this great review! “I have to commend Alexis Duran because this story truly sucked me in and wouldn’t let go. As much as I wanted to put it down, I just couldn’t. ” 5 Stars from Bayou Book Junkie

Purchase at Dreamspinner Press

Purchase on Amazon

Order of the Black Knights

Every century has seen its knights, but they are not always seen. Some of them do what must be done—getting their hands dirty when no one else is willing. Assassins and antiheroes who work from the shadows, they are called the Black Knights. From the time of the society’s creation in the 1100s, these men are cursed to repeat their lives of bloodshed. But for each knight, there is one who can bring out the man that waits inside and break the cycle. The question is whether or not the knight will kill his true love before he figures it out.

***

This post is part of an ongoing blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Every Sunday, participating authors post eight to ten sentences from a published work or perhaps their current work in progress. Then we hop to our fellow warriors’ blogs and check out all the fabulous fiction that’s happening! I heartily invite you to participate as a reader, writer, or both. It’s a great way to discover your next favorite book. Click here or use the address: http://www.wewriwa.com

Seductive Studs ~ The Pact

square_SeductiveStuds

If it’s Monday it musts be time for Seductive Studs. What better way to start out the week than a sampling of snippets from some great m/m stories?

This Wednesday is release day for my new novel, Matthias: Order of the Black Knights. Although Matthias is a contemporary thriller, I thought in honor of Halloween I’d share from the magical set-up that gets Matthias into deep trouble, forever cursed to be reborn as a killer.  This is from the prologue, where Matthias meets the wizard who seals his fate:

The man pushed back his hood to reveal an ancient face plowed with deep wrinkles. His gaze cut into Matthias, sizing him up, then moved along to inspect the small crowd of peddlers and beggars who gathered before him.

“The time has come for a new king to rid your land of these invaders, to push them to the sea and beyond. Who among you would join in such a fight if given the strength and power to do so?”

This drew a laugh from some of the downtrodden men, many of whom were old, half-starved, lame, useless. Matthias felt ashamed to stand among them and know he was no better off.

“Who is this king?” Ahmed the spice merchant barked from behind his bowls of earth-toned powders. “You?”

“I cannot fight myself. I am a wizard, and I need true warriors to wield swords in my name. In return for your oath of loyalty, I can make any man a knight, any boy a warrior.” With these last words, he stared straight at Matthias, his gaze boring holes into his soul. “Sick of begging for scraps and cowering before the undeserving? I can make you invincible.” He lashed out with a staff and knocked the basket from Matthias’s arms. Matthias gaped down at the spilled charms, which looked so shoddy and worthless in the dirt. “I have real magic at my disposal.”

Matthias looked up again and was surprised to hear his own voice rise above the laughter, catcalls, and curses. “And when you become king, what then?”

“You will be richly rewarded. All will fear you. Killing your enemies will be a joy.” He lifted a pointy chin in the direction the knights had gone. “Never again will you give way, for all will give way before you.”

Despite the heat of the sun and bodies pressed around him, Matthias shivered. When the horsemen had ridden over his mother, he’d wanted to kill them so badly he could taste their blood in his mouth. When his father beat him, he longed to rise up, take the whip from his hand, and flay the drunkard’s skin until he screamed for mercy.

No. He hadn’t thought those things. Not until this moment. Not until the wizard said the words Killing your enemies will be a joy. Joy. What a strange, foreign word.

The man was promising him joy. Matthias could take his mother out of the hovel, along with his brothers and sisters. They could live in a palace. Matthias grinned at the image but kept his chin down.

Someone brighter than Matthias asked, “And what’s the price for all this power?”

“Only your loyalty and your service,” the wizard said.

“For how long?”

“Until you choose to stop being a warrior. When you choose to forgive your enemy instead of killing him.” The wizard said this with a shrug, as if he couldn’t imagine anyone choosing to do such a silly thing. He pulled a parchment from the folds of his robes and unrolled it. The expensive paper was blank. “Now, who will be the first to claim their destiny?”

Matthias kicked aside the sad little pile of his mother’s charms and stepped forward. “If your promises don’t come true, the pact is broken,” he said, feeling quite smart to negotiate.

A thin smile twisted the wizard’s lips. “I assure you that I, Moriel, never make false promises.”

He held out a long quill pen, and Matthias reached for it, still sure this was nothing more than a conjuring act like his mother, his grandmother, and his great-grandmother had all performed. But when he took the pen, a thrill coursed up his spine.

As if the market and the crowd had retreated behind a veil of shadows, Matthias saw only the scroll, now covered in elegant script, black x marks and names crisscrossing the bottom.

“Magic as great as this requires sacrifice,” Moriel said quietly, just for Matthias it seemed. “Cut yourself and dip the pen in your blood. This will seal the pact forever.”

“Forever?” Startled, Matthias looked up into Moriel’s dark, abysmal eyes.

“Well, until you decide you’re no longer interested in wealth and power.”

“Until I forgive my enemy.”

“Yes.”

Simple enough. Matthias expected he would feel very forgiving once he and his family were comfortable and safe.

He took a knife from his belt and made a small cut on his forearm. When enough blood seeped out, he dipped in the pen and carefully wrote his name as his mother had taught him.

***

matthiasfs_v2

Matthias: Order of the Black Knights ~ Release date November 2, 2016

From Louisiana swamp rat to revivalist huckster to skilled con artist, Matthias Krall clawed his way out of poverty using his natural gifts of grift and manipulation to become the leader of an exclusive retreat center. Exploiting the guise of spiritual guru, Matthias seduces the rich and powerful into turning over their lives and fortunes to his control. But wealth and a small cadre of loyal followers can’t protect Matthias from the betrayal he knows is imminent. Everyone wants what Matthias has, except for one man who wants to destroy it. Dylan Connelly is a reporter who’s determined to prove the charismatic recluse is not only a fraud but a murderer.

Irresistibly drawn to Dylan despite the warnings in his gut, Matthias lures Dylan to his island retreat, determined to destroy his enemy once and for all.

Preorder at Dreamspinner Press!

Preorder on Amazon!

Order of the Black Knights

Every century has seen its knights, but they are not always seen. Some of them do what must be done—getting their hands dirty when no one else is willing. Assassins and antiheroes who work from the shadows, they are called the Black Knights. From the time of the society’s creation in the 1100s, these men are cursed to repeat their lives of bloodshed. But for each knight, there is one who can bring out the man that waits inside and break the cycle. The question is whether or not the knight will kill his true love before he figures it out.

***

Don’t forget to continue the hop at Seductive Studs!

 

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ All Yours

Hi! Another week has flown by and it’s Weekend Writing Warriors time again. The only solace to time moving so quickly is that I get to find out what happened on all the great snippets that left me hanging last week.  Here in my little corner of WWW, I’m continuing to share from Matthias, my contemporary m/m thriller that’s coming out this Wednesday.

Dylan is a reporter who’s been assigned to do research on the leader of an exclusive resort, Matthias Krall. He was surprised to find out he knew Matthias in college, but not that Matthias’s current activities are suspicious enough to warrant investigation.

***

The loose papers on Dylan’s desk lifted and skittered sideways in the tidal force generated by Amanda as she marched up behind him and dropped a fat stack of file folders on his keyboard.

“All yours,” she said and continued walking toward her office.

“Hey, hang on,” Dylan called after her. The tall, honey-skinned woman spun around. By the glare and the tight lips, Dylan guessed her interview with editor in chief Marley Hawkins hadn’t gone well.

“I knew Matthias Krall in college,” he said, hoping to distract her from whatever argument still brought rose-colored splashes to her cheeks.

“I don’t give a shit,” she said. She blinked a few times as her reporter’s instincts kicked in. “I never found anything about Krall attending UW.”

“There’s no mistaking him.”

***

matthiasfs_v2

Matthias: Order of the Black Knights ~ Release date November 2, 2016

From Louisiana swamp rat to revivalist huckster to skilled con artist, Matthias Krall clawed his way out of poverty using his natural gifts of grift and manipulation to become the leader of an exclusive retreat center. Exploiting the guise of spiritual guru, Matthias seduces the rich and powerful into turning over their lives and fortunes to his control. But wealth and a small cadre of loyal followers can’t protect Matthias from the betrayal he knows is imminent. Everyone wants what Matthias has, except for one man who wants to destroy it. Dylan Connelly is a reporter who’s determined to prove the charismatic recluse is not only a fraud but a murderer.

Irresistibly drawn to Dylan despite the warnings in his gut, Matthias lures Dylan to his island retreat, determined to destroy his enemy once and for all.

Preorder at Dreamspinner Press!

Preorder on Amazon!

Order of the Black Knights

Every century has seen its knights, but they are not always seen. Some of them do what must be done—getting their hands dirty when no one else is willing. Assassins and antiheroes who work from the shadows, they are called the Black Knights. From the time of the society’s creation in the 1100s, these men are cursed to repeat their lives of bloodshed. But for each knight, there is one who can bring out the man that waits inside and break the cycle. The question is whether or not the knight will kill his true love before he figures it out.

***

This post is part of an ongoing blog hop hosted by Weekend Writing Warriors. Every Sunday, participating authors post eight to ten sentences from a published work or perhaps their current work in progress. Then we hop to our fellow warriors’ blogs and check out all the fabulous fiction that’s happening! I heartily invite you to participate as a reader, writer, or both. It’s a great way to discover your next favorite book. Click here or use the address: http://www.wewriwa.com