The Reaper Series: Demons & Imps & Angels. Oh My!

Sometimes it’s hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys.

Here’s a guide for book one, Reap & Repent, from Harlequin E, now available at all e-book retailers.

Demons: born of hell from the residue of damned souls.

  • Must inhabit a body (human) to walk the Earth otherwise in Hell they take the shape their master commands (only limited to his whim and imagination).
  • Can collect souls to steal for Hell but only one maybe two per body because their essence burns through a human body within a day or so. Quicker with more souls.
  • Cannot travel the consecrated subway or pass onto consecrated ground unless they ride a reaper.
  • Demons do not have a soul of their own.
  • Their essence never dissipates unless consumed by Grim.
  • If their host is decapitated or ruined, they bail out and stream to another host.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

The demon struggled to stay inside of the host body, but with no life force, there was nothing to keep it tethered. It streamed out and off to the balcony. Hovering in a formless black mist over the railing, it seemed hesitant to go any further into the red fog. There were worse things than death. 

Imps: Also born of Hell and demon minions which do their bidding. Look like black cats to non-supernatural and human entities.

  • Toad-like monsters with row up on row of needle sharp teeth. Can dispatch of and eat a human body in seconds.
  • Imps do not have souls.
  • Can be killed by decapitation

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

It took her eyes a few seconds to connect with her brain and formulate a response to the slimiest, foulest smelling, toad-like creature she could ever have imagined. The creature rose from the ashes to its full height of two feet, shook itself like a dog shaking off water and bared an impressive and terrifying collection of needle-pointed, three-inch long teeth.

Angels: Most are born of heaven, others ascend through promotions.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

“The guy in the purple robe is the angel Rashnu. The guy on the other end of the station? Also Rashnu. He’s split himself into two because he doesn’t trust anyone else to do the job right. He’s the sorter. The gates of Hell and Heaven are locked up tight. No soul gets through Purgatory except with his blessing. He’s rarely wrong, but once in a while a soul gets kicked back and…well, let’s hope that doesn’t happen today.”

Guardian Angels: Assigned to special cases. Low level angels

Fallen Angels: Considered fallen when they abandon Heaven and become consumed with the forces of evil and Hell.

Hellhound: Tracks demons and other supernatural nasties. Can dispatch and eat a body for disposal if needed. A hapless pet when not on the job.

Want to read more? You can buy Reap & Repent, available now from all e-book retailers. Don’t fear the reapers. My reapers are hot, hot, hot. You may not be that sad to meet one someday.

AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1gF6Q98

B&N: http://bit.ly/1gz4x7M

KOBO: http://bit.ly/1cSZBam

ITUNES: http://bit.ly/1njOngj

HARLEQUIN: http://bit.ly/1gf0Cbs

 

 

Cara Bristol Author Interview: Breeder

It’s Author Interview Friday. This is an opportunity to go behind the scenes, get into the nitty-gritty of the many paranormal worlds and enter into the fertile imaginations of authors I love. Bring a flashlight. It’s sometimes dark in here, but so worth the trip. Remember, monsters need love too. Otherwise, how would we ever have baby monsters?

Think on THAT a while… Welcome, Author Cara Bristol. You’ve just released Breeder, a sci-fi erotic romance with a twist.

Tell us a little bit about your story and what makes it different.  

CB_Breeder_coverin Thanks, Lisa. Thank you so much for having me today. Breeder is about love thriving in an alien, hostile male-dominated world. Women are relegated to the role of breeding slaves. Men and women are forbidden by law to pair up. One of five ruling Alpha Commanders purchases a female to produce his progeny—but he falls in love and violates the law he’s charged to uphold. Breeder mixes many genres in one: sci-fi romance, dystopian sci-fi, domestic discipline, and a touch of M/M—although the story is primarily M/F.  What attracted you to the genre? I conceive the story and then decide which genre to plug it into. I like the liberating nature of sci-fi (and that’s true of paranormal also) in that I am not bound by contemporary limits of what is possible. Let’s talk world-building. Where and when is your novel set. What, if anything, makes your setting unique. Breeder takes place on Parseon, a planet that resembles its ally Terra. It is populated by humanoid aliens (hero Dak is quite the sexy dude), but their culture is totally different from Earth. Breeder blends futuristic elements (lasered weapons, advanced communication, sky tram travel, contact with alien species) with anachronistic ones (travel by beast-drawn conveyance, fighting with daggers). But what’s truly unique is the degree of misogyny in which love manages to bloom—I don’t think I’ve run across that in any other sci-fi romance book. Let’s talk beasties. Do any monsters make appearances in your current or other novels you’ve written. If so, tell us about a few of them. Do you have a favorite? Don’t lie. Every parent…erm…author…does. Spill it. If you don’t have any monsters making appearances, what makes your book paranormal, urban fantasy or science fiction? There is one super creepy alien that makes a cameo appearance in Breeder, but other than that, all the characters are humanoid. The villains are monstrous enough without them being actual monsters. I didn’t pull any punches—and by the way, neither do my villains. As to monsters in general, I’m partial to vampires—the sexy kind—and did feature one in my short story, A Scent of Longing, published by Decadent. However, I’ve come to realize that vampires are so yesterday. I hear reapers are new trending paranormal creature. Is Breeder a part of a series? Stand-alone book? If it is a series, what does the future look like for this series? How many more books to come? What can we expect and more importantly…WHEN! Breeder is part one of a trilogy. Book 2, Terran will be published mid May 2014. I’m writing the third book Warrior in hope of a fall publication 2014 date. I am toying with the idea of doing a “prequel” to the trilogy called Seer, which would tell how the Parseon society came to be so dominated by males and/or a “sequel” called Progeny, which would follow the stories of the adult children of Breeder characters. Although all the books are part of a series, they can be read as stand-alones. What else are you working on? I am in editing with my publishers on Terran (May release), and Long Shot (June release), a spanking romance novella. This year I also have to produce Warrior and want to finish the fifth Rod and Cane Society domestic discipline novel. Of all the characters in your fictional word, which one or couple would you most like to hang out with over a long weekend? What would you do together? What actor or actress would play him/her in a movie? I would like to meet Mark DeLuca, the deputy chief of police from Body Politics and take a tour of the Rod and Cane Society mansion. Oh. My. God. Mark is sexy. But he’s hooked up with Stephanie, the heroine, so I’d need a time machine to travel back before he meets her. Then again, maybe I could just rewrite the book and make Stephanie dump him for a plumber. Oh wait, I’m married. I guess I’ll just meet with both of them for dinner. As to who might play him in a movie, I need that time machine again, because a young Sean Connery would be a perfect choice. I daydream most of my plots. I have a sketchy idea of major plot points and then fill in the details day by day as I write. It’s the sky diving approach to writing a novel. Hm…should I have checked the parachute before I jumped? How long does it typically take for you to write a novel.  Best case scenario? How about editing? How long will you pick at it before setting it free to the world? I write the first draft at a speed of 30k to 40K per month. It takes me as long to edit/proof as it does to write a first draft. So I can whip out a polished 30K novella in two months. I did write 50K of Terran for Nanowrimo, and then took another nine days to wrap it up with another 12K. But that was humping it. Do you have any advice to new authors or anyone considering writing fiction? There is so much that they need to know, but I’ll limit my advice to two things. No. 1, if you do nothing else, eliminate “was” from your manuscript. That alone will result in stronger writing. Rule of thumb: no more than an average of three wases per page. No. 2, get socially connected before you try to publish. Start a blog, build Twitter followers and Facebook friends, open a Goodreads account, get chatty with other authors, read strategically (in your genre). Can you give us a taste of what to expect? Breeder blurb To secure his legacy, Commander Dak, a ruling Alpha of planet Parseon, purchases Omra, a breeder slave. He intends to impregnate her, produce a son, and hand her off to his anointed beta partner. As Dak and Omra discover a sexual bliss banned by law, he begins to question the traditions and ways of his people, causing him to jeopardize his command and endanger the life of the woman he has come to love. Breeder explores the concepts of gender roles and social prohibitions against deviant behavior. It includes nonconsensual domestic discipline and M/F and M/M sexual practices. Breeder excerpt If not for the sneeze, Dak would have exited the musty, dank corridor. But the muffled sound caught his attention. When he squinted into the darkened cell, he spotted a female crouched on a straw mat in the corner. He hadn’t noticed her on his way into the Breeder Containment Facility; the habitation unit had appeared empty. Dak turned to the BCF director and sighed. “What about her?” The beta’s already crooked mouth drooped farther in distaste. “My apologies, Commander. You don’t want that one.” Sival’s disparagement piqued Dak’s interest. The director’s opinion had proven worthless; none of the breeders he’d preselected for inspection had rated close to satisfactory. “I would like to see her,” Dak insisted. “Very well, Commander.” Sival saluted and opened the habitation cell with a master entry card. Dak stepped into the small enclosure. The director followed, and the metal gate clanked shut. The naked female drew into a tighter ball and tucked her face deeper into the crook of her arm. Other breeders had preened as soon as they’d noticed him and his chest-insignia identification. He wasn’t just an alpha. He was the Alpha. This breeder’s lack of respect and failure to adhere to Protocol by acknowledging his presence struck him as odd. Dak frowned. “Is she mentally deficient?” Sival tightened his lips. “No, stubborn, ill behaved. She would not befit an Alpha Commander.” He nudged the female’s hip with the toe of his boot. “Rise to your feet.” She did not respond, and he moved to prod her again. Dak forestalled him with a wave and grasped the female’s arm. “You will stand.” He hauled her upright. She averted her face, so he grabbed her chin and forced her to look at him. Tangled hair the color of black heating stones fell back from an oval face to reveal eyes like the Parseon moon. The glimmer of intelligence that sparked within the violet depths aroused his interest more than anything else he’d seen so far. Nature had bestowed the Parseon people with an exceptionally strong immune system so that they rarely required medical intervention, but breeders by nature were weak, and so many of the ones he’d seen had seemed dull or ill or both. This one’s skin, when unsmudged by grime and dirt, probably glowed like the pale sands of the Ospian Sea. He supposed, as breeders went, she wasn’t unattractive, although the stench emanating from her was. His beta would throw a fit if he dragged such a creature into their domicile. “Why is she so filthy?” he asked. “She refuses to bathe.” As Dak scrutinized her facial features for shape and symmetry, he noted little imperfection or dysgenics other than her lack of hygiene and her gender. When cleaned up, she would please the eye, but to bear his sons, it mattered more that she be healthy and strong. He released her face, stepped back, and assessed her from head to toe. He exceeded the height of most males, alphas included, while she stood smaller than the average female. The top of her head failed to even meet his shoulder. She was thinner than other breeders too, although her chest bore an abundance of fatty breast tissue. In the chill of the cell, her nipples had puckered to hard points. Despite the coolness, he was experiencing a rise in temperature. A dormant lust chose that moment to kindle, causing heat to coil in his abdomen and groin. He could not remember the last time he’d experienced such a spontaneous reaction—if he ever had. With the pads of his fingers, he probed the sides of her neck for swollen areas. The way she trembled under his touch aroused a sliver of sympathy. Breeders lacked courage, and uncertainty frightened them. Not all alphas and their betas treated breeders well. If he chose her, she would be adequately fed and housed. His command consumed his time and energy, which left his beta alone for long stretches. A breeder would relieve Corren of household chores and provide him with a physical outlet as well. “What is she called?” Dak asked. “Her sire named her Omra.” Peace, it meant. He parted Omra’s lips with his fingers and slipped a digit into her mouth, running it along her upper gum line to check the solidness of her teeth. At a flash in her eyes, he jerked his hand away a centisecond before she snapped her jaws together, so that her incisor only grazed the tip of his finger. Sival’s face reddened. “Commander, I apologize. I will have her flogged.” “Unnecessary. I will take care of it.” He unclipped the sudon from his belt.   Where can we find you and your books online?  Amazon Buy Link BN Loose Id Buy Link ARe Buy Link Author website Amazon Author Page Twitter  @CaraBristol Facebook

Cara Bristol

Cara Bristol has written everything from mainstream long and short fiction to nonfiction magazine and newspaper articles. She sold her first erotic romance in 2009. Now multi-published, she has ten erotic romances and three anthologies to her name. The author of the popular Rod and Cane Society domestic discipline series, Cara writes spanking fiction most often, but her published works also include contemporary and paranormal erotic romances. Breeder is her first science fiction novel and the start of a series. She lives in the Midwest United States with her husband. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, traveling, and watching reality TV shows.

The Reaper Series Settings: Cities, Churches, Chapels, Houses & Hospitals

Today’s post is the last in the settings and location series. All places and locations in Reap & Repent are of course fictional, but I based many of them on real locations I’ve traveled to or visited many times. Here are a few of the places you’ll visit with me in Reap & Repent.

Meridian – the city of the demon invasion and the Deacon’s reaping territory.

  • Located in Steele County, Arkansas
  • Spiritually porous ground zero.
  • Most religious institutions per capita and acreage of any city its size in the world.
    • 12 Funeral homes
    • 28 urban cemeteries
    • 265 recognized churches
    • Easily traveled by reapers and other supernatural entities.

 

St. Mary’s Hospital – the hospital where Nate works, where Ruth’s mother died and where Deacon and Ruth meet for the first time.

January 2013 007 (1024x365)

St. Mary’s Chapel – the hospital chapel within St. Mary’s Hospital where the reapers travel to and from.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

She smiled, circling her arms around his waist and stretching up for a kiss. He pulled her close and deepened the kiss. She almost forgot to concentrate on the hallway at all, but the next thing she knew they were spinning and swirling as her head grew light and swimmy. When she opened her eyes, they were inside the chapel at St. Mary’s Hospital.

Deacon grinned down at her. “See, no big deal.”

Right, she thought.

 January 2013 061 (431x1024)

St. Agnes Catholic Church – the church where the first demon portal opens.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

She walked nearly eight blocks before it began to sprinkle down a light rain. Spotting St. Agnes Cathedral, she headed that way. It was a Catholic church, and it was most likely locked up tight at this time of the night, but she had to give it a try. She was ready to go home. They’d done all they could for Kylen at this point. Right now, his care was beyond their abilities. He needed his physical injuries to be tended to by professionals, and then they could bring him back home and help him recover more quickly. The quicker the better. 

Huntsbury – city of Ruth’s youth .

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

“Huntsbury was a small town suburb of Meridian, about twenty-five miles away, with a population hovering near 5,000. She could pretty much accomplish everything she needed there.”

 IMG_2479 (1024x631)

Ruth’s House: her childhood home on 10 acres of woods adjacent to a patchwork of national forest.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

Late Saturday night, she pulled down the long tree-lined driveway to her childhood home. It was actually uncomfortable to even call it “home.” It certainly hadn’t ever felt homey. Love makes a house a home and this house had not had that necessary ingredient for a long time.

A bungalow, she supposed.

Realtors would use words like “charming” and “quaint.” It was actually a turn of the century, rock-sided house. Ruth always thought of it as a giraffe house because the large, flat sandstones that were mortared to its frame on all sides looked like the sides of a prehistoric giraffe.

This house once represented the hopes and dreams of her parents. Now it was much like her mother had been: functional but barely. It boasted all the basic trappings of a home—plumbing, electricity, furnishings—but it lacked any sort of warmth or personality because her mother gave up on it, as well as her daughter.

Want to read more? Reap & Repent, from Harlequin E, now available at all e-book retailers.

AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1gF6Q98

B&N: http://bit.ly/1gz4x7M

KOBO: http://bit.ly/1cSZBam

ITUNES: http://bit.ly/1njOngj

HARLEQUIN: http://bit.ly/1gf0Cbs

 

New Cover Reveal for Reap & Repent

 

Reap & Repent final revised (647x1024)My heroine, Ruth Scott, is finally a brunette! Just like I created her. Check out the cover change for the single-title release of Reap & Repent on June 2.

I’m so happy. Those of you who bought the box set and/or got promo cards with the first cover now officially have a collector’s item worth…well…it’s pretty cool, right?

The second box set links are live on Amazon but the artwork and Reap & Redeem‘s covers are yet to be revealed. If you’d like to pre-order, you can find it here Harlequin E Paranormal Romance & Urban Fantasy Box Set Volume 2.

I can’t wait to see them!

Stay tuned for a reveal soon!

Gwen Knight Author Interview: Harlequin Nocturne Cravings presents A Hunter’s Passion

It’s Author Interview Friday. This is an opportunity to go behind the scenes, get into the nitty-gritty of the many paranormal worlds and enter into the fertile imaginations of authors I love. Bring a flashlight. It’s sometimes dark in here, but so worth the trip. Remember, monsters need love too. Otherwise, how would we ever have baby monsters?

Think on THAT a while…

Welcome, Author Gwen Knight! You’ve just released A Hunter’s Passion.  Tell us a little bit about your story.A Hunter's Passion

Ryker Bennett has dedicated his life to hunting down—and eliminating—creatures of the dark. But his latest assignment has him questioning everything he’s ever believed in. Jenna Sinclair may be a witch, but she’s also the only woman Ryker has ever loved

Jenna thought leaving Ryker two years ago would save him from having to choose between their forbidden love and his sworn duty. But when he tracks her down, it’s clear the desire between them burns as hot as ever—and that they’ll have to walk through the flames to be together….

What attracted you to the genre?

Boredom! By the time I reached grade six, my concentration started… well, fading. I wanted something interesting, something dangerous to think about. Not exactly the best thing for an elementary student to think about, but hey, monsters definitely top the cake compared to math equations. From that moment on, I was a paranormal junkie.

Let’s talk beasties. You have one or several monsters making appearances in your novels. Tell us about a few of them. Do you have a favorite? Don’t lie. Every parent…erm…author…does. Spill it.

Vampires always make an appearance in whatever project I am working on. They were the first paranormal creature I read about, and I’m sure I will continue reading about them until I’m well into my graying years and blind. I’ll just need some vampires in brail then. In A HUNTER’S PASSION, vampires are only briefly mentioned. As much as I adore them, I did want to branch away from them since they are so popular. Other than vampires, necromancers are my next favorite. Maybe there’s one in my next project, maybe not…

Is this a series? Stand-alone book? What does the future look like for this series? Are there more books to come? What can we expect and more importantly…WHEN!

I’m definitely striving to make it a series! It’s my first, so it’s taking a bit of time to arrange everything. Should all go well, there will be a book per brother. As for when, well, that depends on when I can get it all out of my head.

What else are you working on?

Quite a bit, too much some might say! While tossing the Bennett brothers on a whirlwind adventure, I’ve been working on a romantic suspense AND a “reckoning”. There’s also another urban fantasy series brewing in my crowded head.

Of all the characters in your fictional word, which one or couple would you most like to hang out with over a long weekend? What would you do together? What actor or actress would play him/her in a movie?

Weston Bennett… That boy is my absolute favorite. In a movie, he’d be played by Chris Pine. As for the long weekend, what wouldn’t we do! I would definitely have him take me on a hunt.

Let’s talk about craft. Are you a plotter or pantser? What are the first steps you take before diving into the writing of the next book?

I used to be a pantser (is that a word?! lol!) until I realized that doesn’t work for me. Around midway through the book, I’d get stuck. So I’d much rather be stuck at the beginning, take the time to plot it all out, and then get down to the nitty-gritty. This is new for me, though, so I’m just realizing how much work goes into plotting! I used to do everything by the seat of my pants. In fact, A HUNTER’S PASSION was written that way. The last 4 brothers, however, being a series require a full breakdown.

How long does it typically take for you to write a novel.  Best case scenario? How about editing? How long will you pick at it before setting it free to the world?

Depends on length, I suppose. And how inspired I am, naturally. Usually I can pump out a chapter every two days or so (being that I work 8 -5). But that’s best scenario, if I were writing every single day. When I’m inspired, absolutely. Obviously, I’m not inspired every day. As for editing, I have 2 beta’s that help me with editing. They pick it to shreds, I stitch it back together, then we all take one final read through before it gets shunted off.

Do you have any advice to new authors or anyone considering writing fiction?

Stick with it. Writing a novel can be the hardest thing you do, but not writing it is even more difficult.

Where can we find you and your books online?

Links to Me:

Facebook Account: https://www.facebook.com/gwen.knight.the.writer

Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/GwenKnightx

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GwenKnightx

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Gwen-Knight/e/B00EMN2RX4/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1393856579&sr=8-2

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7216477.Gwen_Knight

Website: www.gwenknight.ca

 

Links to Book:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/A-Hunters-Passion-Gwen-Knight-ebook/dp/B00F12GYVG

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-CA/ebook/a-hunter-s-passion

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-hunters-passion-gwen-knight/1116863082?ean=9781460326398

Mills & Boon: http://www.millsandboon.co.uk/a-hunters-passion

Harlequin: http://www.harlequin.com/storeitem.html?iid=50166

 

Gwen1

Gwen Knight is a northern Canadian girl currently living in Fort St. John, British Columbia. She graduated from the University of Lethbridge with a degree in Archaeology and Geography. Her interests consist of playing in the dirt, designing elaborate snow forts, boating, and archery. She enjoys meeting new people and can be followed at facebook.com/GwenKnightx and on Twitter @GwenKnightx.

 

 

 

 

 

Reap What We Sow Wednesday: Facebook

FB screenshot

This week I want to share my Facebook Author Page.

If you come on over and LIKE me, you’ll get all of the minute-by-minute updates including what goes on inside my head. Sorry about that.

I post daily so come on over and play.

Have you read Reap & Repent? If so, please consider leaving a review on Amazon and Goodreads. If not, well, here’s your chance!

AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1gF6Q98
B&N: http://bit.ly/1gz4x7M
KOBO: http://bit.ly/1cSZBam
ITUNES: http://bit.ly/1njOngj
HARLEQUIN: http://bit.ly/1gf0Cbs

 

Five Real-Life Cemeteries That Inspired The Reaper Series

Cemeteries are integral to the characters of Reap & Repent who spend a lot of time traveling to, from, and through them. All of the cemeteries of The Reaper Series were inspired by real-life cemeteries near my own hometown. Here are a few fictionalized places you’ll be visiting in The Reaper Series.

IMG_2465 (1024x411)

Good Springs Cemetery-  outside Huntsbury – rural cemetery two miles from Ruth’s home.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

He lingered longer than necessary in the window and for a second, she thought he was going to kiss her again. After a moment’s hesitation, he turned and walked through the Good Springs archway. He didn’t even look back as he grabbed hold of the first headstone he came to and swirled and shimmered in a mini tornado until poof, he was gone. Just like that.

Ruth rolled up her window and locked the doors. All of them. She was not ashamed to admit that she was more than a little scared. As far as she could tell at the moment, there wasn’t anything to actually be scared of in her immediate vicinity.

It’s the things you can’t see.

She backed her big-ass car out of the cemetery and headed into town with the radio blasting so that she couldn’t think too much.

 

download (1)

Meridian National Cemetery – downtown Meridian

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

She felt the pull, and in a few seconds they were in the middle of Meridian National Cemetery. The cemetery was situated along two very busy main roads in town. They landed in the middle of the grounds under a gazebo.

IMG_4182 (1024x768)

Panther Valley Cemetery – where Ruth’s parents are buried.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

Panther Valley Cemetery is an old and rural cemetery in Steele County, Arkansas. Hundreds of similar cemeteries dotted the state. Since it was a week before Memorial Day, the grounds were neat and clipped. The headstones had been trimmed by the volunteer caretaker. The grounds were empty as they pulled up and through the gate. The entire area was bucolic with the rolling green hills, waist deep with the first growth of fescue of the year. A lush green line of trees demarked Panther Creek as it trickled through the bottom land.

IMG_0376 (1280x960)

East Lawn Cemetery, Meridian: - outskirts of Meridian

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

East Lawn Cemetery was another one of the larger cemeteries in town but at least it was off the main streets. The cemetery covered more than eight acres. The street lights were far enough away that the numerous trees made it almost impossible to navigate until their eyes adjusted. One by one, the white headstones appeared out of the darkness like blooming moon flowers.

IMG_2544 (1024x558) - Copy

Maple Park Cemetery, Meridian – near downtown neighborhood.

Excerpt from Reap & Repent

They landed in Maple Park Cemetery next, which was tiny in comparison but much darker. With no visible street traffic, they had about zero chance of being spotted as they made their way through the grounds, which was a relief. The entire cemetery covered a couple of wooded acres. It didn’t take long to find the next candidate: Evelyn Opal Carson, aged eighty-seven.  

Want to read more? Reap & Repent, from Harlequin E, now available at all e-book retailers.

AMAZON   BARNES & NOBLE   KOBO  iTUNES  HARLEQUIN

 

Meet Harlequin Author Misty Simon

It’s Author Interview Friday. This is an opportunity to go behind the scenes, get into the nitty-gritty of the many paranormal worlds and enter into the fertile imaginations of authors I love. Bring a flashlight. It’s sometimes dark in here, but so worth the trip. Remember, monsters need love too. Otherwise, how would we ever have baby monsters?

Think on THAT a while…

Meet fellow Harlequin E Urban Fantasy & Paranormal Box Set Babe and Author Misty Simon.

Welcome, Misty! You’ve just released Wicked Ink.  Tell us a little bit about your story.  

Hi Lisa! And thanks for having me here! I love your site. Where to start on the story?!?! The story opens with Garrett Blackwell, former bad guy, going after some thugs. Now that might be a great suspense story, but then I added a layer where Garrett’s tattoos can transform into weapons and you have an awesome power to deal with. His next door neighbor seems to be the perky girl next door, but she is much more than she appears to be on the surface.

Do you consider your book(s) urban fantasy or paranormal romance? What attracted you to the genre?

I’m going to say they’re both with a dash of mystery. You have the grittier backdrop of urban fantasy, the superpowers of a paranormal and the mystery of who is after Garrett, and how far will they go to get it?

Let’s talk beasties. Do any monsters make appearances in your novels. If so, tell us about a few of them. Do you have a favorite? Don’t lie. Every parent…erm…author…does. Spill it. If not, what makes your book paranormal, urban fantasy or science fiction?

I love beasties and will be writing them in the future (fingers crossed because I adore the Phoenix and dragons). But for this series it’s all about superpowers! My favorite monsters are the ones that don’t get a lot of love, but to tell the truth, after reading your Reap and Repent, I have to confess a new love affair with reapers.

Is this a series? Stand-alone book? If it is a series, what does the future look like for this series? How many more books to come? What can we expect and more importantly…WHEN!

This is the beginning of a series. Wicked Ink will be followed by Protective Ink in July and I am currently working on Fluid Ink but don’t have a release date as of yet.

What else are you working on?

LOL! What am I not working on might be a better question! I also have a Contemporary Romance series set in rural PA that is currently on the shelves and a long-running cozy mystery series that is being revamped. But paranormal mystery is definitely one of my favorite genres.

Of all the characters in your fictional word, which one or couple would you most like to hang out with over a long weekend? What would you do together? What actor or actress would play him/her in a movie?

I’d love to hang with the whole crew from Wicked Ink. They’re intense but I’d like to see if I could get Garrett drunk enough to karaoke!

Let’s talk about craft. Are you a plotter or pantser? What are the first steps you take before diving into the writing of the next book?

Total plotter and a must before I start writing is knowing who the core of the character is. What is that defining moment in their lives? It informs every decision they’ll make and I can’t move forward without it. Well, that and their name because names mean a lot to me.

How long does it typically take for you to write a novel.  Best case scenario? How about editing? How long will you pick at it before setting it free to the world?

Eek. Roundabouts, I can manage 2K a day with the day job. Without it I have reached 10,000 words in one day but then was dead for the whole next day :) A full length novel can take as little as a month if it’s rolling. But if a book is not gelling, it’s probably closer to three months.

Editing is one of the joys of life. It usually takes me about a week to edit. I like to have a clean copy as I’m writing since I am completely linear and can’t move forward if the behind is a mess. Then once I’m done editing I send to critique partners, fix what makes sense to me and send that puppy out into the world. It doesn’t always work. I do have one book that I rewrote twelve times (over the course of ten years) before it sold. I was selling other stuff in between but that book kept calling to me and eventually I got it right.

I’m apparently all over the map!

Do you have any advice to new authors or anyone considering writing fiction?

Do not give up. Second, every word down is an accomplishment – celebrate!

Please enjoy this WICKED INK excerpt

wicked-ink

Chapter One

Dark glass shot out from Garrett Blackwell’s palms as he ran down the alley behind his apartment building. The college student from 4A screamed at the top of her lungs, grappling with the man in the black ski mask who held her by the throat. Garrett’s shards of glass struck true as they bloodied the assailant’s hands, giving the girl a quick second of release.

“Run,” he yelled to her, but she was already sprinting down the narrow road without looking back.

“You son of a bitch.” The girl’s attacker shook his bloody hands in front of him, splattering crimson against the brown brick walls.

“Truer words were never spoken,” Garrett said.

Drawing from the darkness around him and in the man opposite him, he mentally called up a long, double-edged blade into his right hand. A black tribal tattoo from his right biceps slithered down his arm, wrapped around his wrist, and pooled in his palm, materializing as a dagger. He readjusted his shoulders to soothe the crawling sensation as the tattoo did what he’d asked of it. The blade shone midnight-black in the dim light of the quarter moon above them.

The perpetrator started to back away before Garrett had fully gripped the dagger. “Oh no, you’re not getting away that easily,” he said.

Garrett launched himself toward the man, and felt a surge of satisfaction as the dagger sliced through the man’s arm. His blood slicked the blade and was absorbed into it within seconds. The man feinted to the right, then lunged to the left. They had reached the end of the alleyway, where bright streetlights gleamed against the night sky, chasing away the shadows that fueled Garrett’s power.

A car came careening around the corner and glanced off the man in the tattered ski mask. He went down, but was back up faster than Garrett would have anticipated. He ran into the middle of the street, loping painfully and cradling his arm against his side.

Before Garrett could follow him and finish this thing, the same car screeched to a halt and the man jumped in, shouting obscenities while the car zoomed off in a heartbeat.

Leaning against the brick building, Garrett dragged in a deep breath and absorbed the dagger back into his body, his tattoos reforming around his biceps. Later, he would need to find the shards of glass he’d sent shooting into the assailant’s hands. He could live without them, but he didn’t like to leave pieces of himself lying around. There would be enough fallout from this brawl without the added complication of making a trip to Lissa for a new tat.

He dug his fingers into the bricks, trying to ground himself so he could find the strength to fight the darkness swirling through his blood. His head swam with nausea and his knees almost gave out. Somehow he had to get back upstairs so he could detox. Right about now, he wished he could fly like the mythical Superman. He’d take Kryptonite over the purging any day.

Each step was painful, though no one would be able to tell from his outward appearance. He might look slightly drunk to the casual observer, his dark hair tousled, his T-shirt untucked from his worn jeans, but that suited his purpose. Hopefully it would keep his neighbors from being too nosy.

He made it to the third landing without coming across anyone. Staggering down the hallway, he only hoped he could make the last three steps without attracting notice.

This was not his night, though, in more ways than one. He snapped to his full height a breath before 3A’s door opened.

“Hey, Garrett,” his next-door neighbor said. “I’ve been working on a new recipe. Have you had dinner yet?”

He stifled a groan, not knowing whether it was from the unwelcome promise of another meal cooked by someone who shouldn’t even have a kitchen, or from the pain coursing through his body as the darkness sank deeper into his cells.

“Hi, Dory. Thanks for the offer, but I already ate.” The urge to bolt into his apartment was nearly overwhelming. But running from Dory was not going to do him any good. He’d realized the hard way that the more fodder you gave people for speculation, the more questions they tended to ask.

 

Want to read more? You can buy here:

AMAZON   BARNES & NOBLE   KOBO  iTUNES  HARLEQUIN

Look for the next installment in the Ink series with Protective Ink! Coming in July 2014 from Harlequin E.

 

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Misty Simon loves a good story and decided one day that she would try her hand at it. Eventually she got it right. There’s nothing better in the world than making someone laugh, and she hopes everyone at least snickers in the right places when reading her books. She lives with her husband, daughter and two insane dogs in Central Pennsylvania where she is hard at work on her next novel or three. She loves to hear from readers so drop her a line at misty@mistysimon.com

Follow Misty on Twitter  and Facebook

Website: www.mistysimon.com

Blog: www.thewholeshebangsite.wordpress.com

Reap-What-We-Sow Wednesday: Songza Playlist

 

Songza Playlist Reap & RepentEach of the four books I’ve written so far has begun with a playlist.

I spend a lot of time in my car driving for my day job. That windshield time means my mind can wander and some of my best ideas have come from car plotting while listening to music which inspires me.

What better song than Don’t Fear the Reaper to sum up The Reaper Series?

For Reap & Repent, that playlist consisted mostly of classic rock. You know who I’m talking about; AC/DC, Kansas, Blue Oyster Cult, Bad Company, Kansas. The good stuff.

If you want to get into the mood or just listen along while you read. Here’s your playlist. It’s completely free to listen to on Songza. They even have an app for that. Get your iTunes app here. Android app here.

Enjoy!

What classic rock song is your favorite? Do you know of a classic rock song that should have made the list?

Drop me a line and let me know.

Don’t have Reap & Repent yet? Forgiveness is yours. Now, go get it.

AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1gF6Q98
B&N: http://bit.ly/1gz4x7M
KOBO: http://bit.ly/1cSZBam
ITUNES: http://bit.ly/1njOngj
HARLEQUIN: http://bit.ly/1gf0Cbs

Heaven, Hell & the In-Between: Settings of The Reaper Series

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Purgatory 

This is the angel Rashnu’s domain. Rashnu is the sorter who sends the reaped souls to their final destinations after reapers deposit their cargo via a tube-like system inside Purgatory. There are many tunnels and tubes in the stone walls of Purgatory all leading to different destinations and levels of Heaven or Hell. Imagine if you will Grand Central Station completely underground and encased in stone. That’s Purgatory. There’s even a Star Wars-esque cantina where reapers—all sorts of reapers—can have a drink and share war stories.  Purgatory is members only and patrons need to be carrying a soul to enter or a.

 Excerpt from Reap & Repent

“Ruth opened her eyes to complete chaos. There were creatures everywhere. She would have been hard pressed to prove most of them were now or ever had been human. It was like the Cantina scene in Star Wars without the fun band. Ruth’s mouth gaped open. It was dark, foggy and damp in the long unground cave-like chamber. She’d never seen anything like it.

It was a depot of sorts with long tunnels crisscrossing and disappearing into the stone walls. The floors and ceilings were also rough stone and light from an unseen source emanated down through strategically positioned skylight structures along the ceiling. Creatures were everywhere. A scant minority of the occupants appeared to be human. There was so much to take in it was overwhelming. Chiseled placards demarked the top of each tunnel in a language she didn’t understand. At both ends of the main channel huge platforms rose above the fray and what looked like an angel, complete with a flowing purple robe, sat upon a stone throne.”

 

Heaven

Most of the story takes place on the earthly realm, Purgatory and Hell. We don’t get to see Heaven but we know there are levels of Heaven just like there are levels of Hell. One passes through them on their way to perfection.

Certainly something to strive for and about a bazillion times better than the alternative.

 

Hell 

The fallen angel Lucifer is the King of Hell. He has a palace and everything. You’ll get to see quite a lot of it actually.

The trip there: Excerpt from Reap & Repent

“They spun and sputtered through a long tunnel of red strobing light that made Ruth’s head hurt. Her stomach turned as she tried to close her eyes, but the light strobed against her retinas as intensely whether open or closed. They seemed to slide through the tunnel forever. It was much longer than was comfortable or than she ever traveled on her trips to Purgatory. A carnival ride gone bad.

When she was sure she was going to vomit, they crashed to a stop at a dusty crossroads. Red fog hung low as far as she could see which wasn’t very far at all. Nate landed hard but stood up quickly, dusting the red clay off his jeans. Kylen frowned as he looked down the road towards the red glow in the cloud-covered covered horizon.”

 

What they see when they arrive: Excerpt from Reap & Repent

They walked on for what seemed like several miles, enveloped in their manufactured auras. Nate maintained his with only an occasional push or touch from Ruth. He was getting stronger despite his reluctance to admit it. His calling was still unclear, but he’d already proven himself useful more than once with the powers he had. Who knew what other resources lay within him, waiting to emerge.

There was nowhere left to hide, and the closer they came to the palace, the fog began to dissipate. The place looked like an impenetrable fortress, complete with a moat of what appeared to be flowing lava.

Wonderful, Ruth thought.

A guard stood post at the main entrance. It was small and toadlike, an imp like the one Ruth had run through with a fire poker in her living room only a few days ago. It seemed like an inadequate guardian for such a tremendous palace, but then again, Ruth assumed that not too many folks were hot to visit this place of their own accord. 

Want to read more? Reap & Repent, from Harlequin E, now available at all e-book retailers.

AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1gF6Q98

B&N: http://bit.ly/1gz4x7M

KOBO: http://bit.ly/1cSZBam

ITUNES: http://bit.ly/1njOngj

HARLEQUIN: http://bit.ly/1gf0Cbs