YA Dragon Shifters

June 19, 2011 at 6:13 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Finally stopped back here for a visit – it’s been a crazy spring. Here’s a big wave to everyone!

My paranormal YA series, THE DRAGON DIARIES launched this month. This series is a spin-off of my Dragonfire series, featuring dragon shape shifters. FLYING BLIND is the first book in a trilogy, featuring the coming of age of Zoë. She’s the only dragon shapeshifter and so she should be the Wyvern and have special powers. The problem is that her powers are AWOL and she has no idea how to develop them. In book one, her first shift is triggered so she gets sent to dragon shifter boot camp with the other dragon shifters – where the young dragons discover that it’s up to them to save their kind from a new threat. Book #2, WINGING IT, will be out in December, followed by book #3, BLAZING THE TRAIL, next June.

You can read more about The Dragon Diaries on my website for it, right here. I’m also in the midst of a blog tour this month, so there are reviews, and guest posts and copies of the book to be won – read more here.

In Dragonfire, DARKFIRE KISS was released in May. That’s the story of Rafferty’s firestorm, and it had awesome reviews – you can read about the book right here. There are two more Dragonfire titles scheduled: FLASHFIRE in January 2012 and Dragonfire #8 in October 2012 (no title on that one yet.)

Lots of dragons in my office this year!

In other news, I’ve been republishing some of my Claire Delacroix backlist digitally this year. All of these books are available for Kindle for $2.99, and at Smashwords – they are perking their way to other distributors like Apple, Sony, KOBO and Barnes & Noble.

The Rogues of Ravensmuir is a medieval trilogy, each book featuring a hero with something to hide. These are a bit Gothic, and I’m glad to see them available again – especially with wonderful new covers. They are THE ROGUE, THE SCOUNDREL and THE WARRIOR. You can see the covers and read excerpts here, plus connect to buy links.

Three of my time travels are also available again. LOVE POTION #9, THE MOONSTONE and ONCE UPON A KISS were originally published under my pseudonym Claire Cross and have been unavailable for a long time. It’s exciting to have new covers on them, too. You can read about them right here.

And last but not least, the only wolf shifter book I’ve ever written was a medieval published by Harlequin Historicals called ENCHANTED. I’ve just learned that they’re going to re-release that book digitally in July. This book features a hero cursed to be a wolf half of the time, a fairy tale feel, and a heroine who just doesn’t take no for an answer – especially when her HEA is at stake. I love this book and am quite excited about this. There’s a bit more about it here on my site, but you’ll have to scroll way down.

Edited to add – Actually, Harlequin is going to republish that entire trilogy. Links and stuff on my blog, right here.

Phew! That’s all my news!

Permalink 2 Comments

Wolf Shifter Eye Candy–WOLF FEVER is in the stores!!!

December 4, 2010 at 7:44 am (General) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


Catch the WOLF FEVER!!! It’s now in stores everywhere!
http://www.youtube.com/v/KOpPqoptqko?hl=en&fs=1
Werewolves are downright hunky. They HAVE to be in wonderful shape, running great distances, covering their territory, claiming it. So I wanted to share some wolfish pictures of wolves in their prime. 🙂

First, wolves love to swim. This wolf is swimming happily, but when he shapeshifts, he’s enjoying the warm water without a care in the world.

Hmm, yes, think he might need a spot of oil rubbed onto his back, or … elsewhere?

I have to mention wolves nap a lot during the day. Although if you join them in bed for a nice little nap, you might not get one.

To me, he looks like he’s faking sleep, just waiting for you to join him!

Wolves love the outdoors and these wolves are no exception!

Anyone to enjoy the outdoors with him?

An invitation like this is just too much to refuse, don’t you think?

Hmm, yes!

Speaking of wolves, I’ve started my month-long blog tour so if you have the chance, feel free to drop by and say hi!

Blog Tour for WOLF FEVER
11/28 Cate Masters Blogspot
_____________________________
~~Weekend~~
_____________________________

11/30 Escape Between The Pages
_____________________________
12/1 Sia McKye’s Thoughts Over Coffee

_____________________________
12/2 Casablanca
_____________________________

12/3 Sizzling Hot Books
_____________________________
~~Weekend~~
_____________________________
12/6 My Overstuffed Bookcase
_____________________________
12/7 Paranormal Haven
12/7 Tor.com
_____________________________
12/8 Anna’s Book Blog
_____________________________
12/9 A Moment with Mystee
_____________________________
12/10 RomFan Reviews
_____________________________
~~Weekend~~
12/12 Australian Romance Readers
_____________________________
12/13 Romance Fiction on Suite 101
_____________________________
12/14 SciFi Guy
_____________________________
12/15 Fresh Fiction
_____________________________
12/16 Open
_____________________________
12/17 Queen of Happy Endings
12/17 Guns and Castles
_____________________________
~~Weekend~~
_____________________________
12/20 Cindy’s Love of Books

12/20 Star Crossed Lovers
_____________________________
12/21 Love Romance Passion
_____________________________
12/22-Weekend Christmas Holidays
_____________________________
12/27 Thoughts in Progress
_____________________________
12/28 That’s What I’m Talking About
_____________________________
12/29 A Simple Love of Reading
12/30 Open
12/31 Open

Love Romance Passion Review of WOLF FEVER…5 Stars!
by Susan S., guest reviewer

A would-not-could-not stop…read! Full of nail-biting suspense, sexy scenes, and plenty of hot alphas to get you through the coldest of winters.

Summary: Carol was bitten during a fight between the reds and the gray lupus garous. Since that fateful day, she’s having trouble coinciding her halves. The human half, a nurse with precognitive powers, and her werewolf half, as a newly turned red. Darien Silver’s grays have been kind, patient, and protective of Carol Wood (heroine). But, as the saying goes, you can lead a wolf into the forest, but you can’t make it howl. She’ll accept their ways, when she’s ready. And not a minute sooner! In the interim, she refuses to shift.

When Ms. Wood realizes she’s in danger in more ways than one, she hires a bodyguard. She’s not only endangering her human patients by refusing to shift, but someone’s determined to kidnap her. Chester Ryan McKinley, hero, is a gray alpha and an uber sexy P.I. She’ll need Ryan 24/7. Oh, he’s qualified all right. He can protect her as a man, or as an alpha wolf. But, who’ll protect her from his “growing” desires? Perhaps, no protection is needed. There’s a bioengineered virus spreading among the packs. When Carol develops a low grade fever, is it too late for loving Ryan?

Review: As a reader who’s been following Spear’s werewolf series, I’m declaring Wolf Fever the best novel…thus far. I held my breath quite a bit with book six. When Carol’s grasping at straws searching for a cure, I felt the desperation. When she’s kidnapped, I felt the horror. Terry Spear knows exactly how to extract emotions from her readers, draw them into the story, and how to keep them riveted until the last word’s printed on the last page. Suffice to say, I’ve added it to my re-read list.

Favorite Scenes: Coincidentally, my favorite scenes involve windows. The first scene is when Carol peers into the forest, and spots a wolf watching her. Time stood still when I read it. Then, there’s the scene where Ms. Wood is in a sunroom, its dark out, she looks out the window and gazes at the moon. Then she loses her tightly reigned in control. Love it! Oh, it bears repeating…love it!

Recommendations: I’m recommending Wolf Fever to anyone who enjoys reading romances. It was a delight to read; I’m sure you’ll agree.

What’s Next? Heart of the Highland Hero (book seven) is set to release in June 2011. Who’s the hero? One sexy laird named Ian McNeill.
Hope you’ve enjoyed a little wolfish eye candy! And if you want to catch WOLF FEVER, stop by and say hi!

Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male.”
http://www.terryspear.com

Permalink 2 Comments

Cover for First Dragonfire YA

September 27, 2010 at 11:18 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , , , , , )

I’m so excited! I’ve got the cover for FLYING BLIND, the first in the trilogy of dragon YA titles coming from NAL next summer. These are linked to my Dragonfire series – the trilogy is called The Dragon Diaries.

The trilogy focuses on Zoë coming into her powers as the new Wyvern. FLYING BLIND is book #1 and will be released in June 2011. Tentative pub dates for #2 and #3 are December 2011 and June 2012.

Hop over to my blog and take a peek!

Permalink 3 Comments

More Dragonfire!

August 4, 2010 at 9:23 am (Deborah Cooke, New Releases) (, , , , , , )

Hi everyone!

I’ve been a slacker in the blogosphere, but that’s because I’ve been writing. This week my new Dragonfire novel – WHISPER KISS by Deborah Cooke – went on sale! Woo HOOO! I’m really excited about this one, because I had so much fun writing Rox and Niall’s story.

Here’s the yummy yummy cover:

There have been lots of great review quotes already. Here’s the Romantic Times review – they gave it 4.5 stars!

“Cooke introduces her most unconventional and inspiring heroine to date with tattoo artist Rox.  Although the sparks are instantaneous between Rox and the Pyr Niall, each has baggage that makes their firestorm problematic. These highly likeable protagonists invest readers immediately in their hazardous journey.  Cooke aces another one!”

You can read an excerpt from WHISPER KISS on my site, right HERE. You can read more quotes on my blog, right HERE. You can visit me on Facebook, right HERE.

Right here and now, I think we should have a contest. (Don’t you?) So, tell me what you think is SEXY about dragon shape shifters – or even about one of my Pyr dragon dudes. I’ll pick a winner on Monday August 9 – the winner will get a signed copy of WHISPER KISS.

Permalink 21 Comments

Guest Author, AJ Chase with Cat and Mouse

November 13, 2009 at 5:00 am (General, Guest Bloggers, Interviews) (, , , , , , )

Hi all!  We have a very special guest today.  Someone who has stepped out of the “norm” for shapeshifters, and done something new, exciting and funny.  AJ Chase, author of Cat And Mouse is here to talk about her book, and why she chose to something so unusual to write about.  Now mind you, AJ is like thirteen months pregnant (ok, not really, but you get the gist) so our interview will be rather short.

First, let me show you this adorable cover!

Cat and Mouse Cover

For Katherine Stapleton (aka Kitty), being a shape-shifter isn’t nearly as glamorous as the novels and movies make it out to be. It isn’t all raw, animalistic sex and superhuman physical prowess. There’s also the hairballs.

Kitty has spent her entire life being a less-than-perfect were-cat. She can’t control her animal changes, so she decides to excel at matters human. After a decade of worldly successes, she’s back home for her ten-year high school reunion. Yet, she feels just as insignificant as she did back in school–except with Sam Philmore, a fellow D.C. lawyer and past classmate. And her former secret crush. In just three days Kitty gets the bad memories, the good times, the bitter truth, and a mouthful of one very sexy man who just happens to be a mouse sometimes…

Genre: Paranormal/Shapeshifter/Contemporary/Romantic Comedy
Rating: Spicy
Book Length: Novella

Price: $3.99 (Excerpt below)

Hello AJ, it’s great to have you here.  We know you are very pregnant, so no going into labor while we’re here today. Save that for tomorrow.

Ha.  tomorrow doesn’t work for me either.  So we’ll schedule that labor for next week.

What type of books do you like to write?

I like romantic suspense and YA the best but I also write romantic comedies and series mysteries.

What made you decide to write a shifter book?

Someone mentioned writing a romantic comedy that was paranormal and I thought, “That sounds fun.”  So I did lol.  Not a lot of thought went into the decision.

This is your first book, are you excited?  Tell us all about it.

I think I’d be more excited if I wasn’t so tired.  Gestating makes things a lot less exciting.  Unless it’s cake.  Cake is still pretty exciting right now.

I’ll have to remember to send you some when I make my next one. Course that would mean I’d have to bake, so it might be a while. Now folks, I’ve read this story, and it’s as cute as can be.   But, a mouse?  The hero is a mouse?  But… But… I thought readers like alpha male types!
Actually, I think Sam is pretty alpha, even if he is a mouse sometimes.  He definitely isn’t afraid to go after what he wants and he expects to get it.  But, yes.  He is a mouse.  When I decided I wanted to write a funny shifter story I didn’t know what to focus on but my daughter loves Tom and Jerry for some inexplicable reason and it was playing and i thought, that would be funny.

But I wanted to turn it on it’s ear even more by making her the cat and him the mouse.

If you could be a shifter, what would you be, and why?
I’ve always wanted to be a fox.  I would totally chose to be a fox.

Thanks AJ for dropping in with us!  Do you have any final words for us before you run off into the world of motherhood and new babies?

I wish I had some amazing advice or pearls of wisdom but I’m not much for profundity right now.  I’m barely coherent.  So I’ll just say thanks for having me!

Now, before I provide you with a tasty, tease from this cute little book, let me tell you AJ is going to give one lucky commenter a copy of Cat And Mouse.  So comment away.  Tell us about your favorite funny book, shifter or other paranormal, and why you thought it was so cute!

Excerpt:

We wandered across the courtyard, deafened by the huge artificial spray of water as we crossed under the waterfall. The pair of us found a little niche between the pool at the bottom of the waterfall and a large—probably artificial— garden. We leaned against the stucco wall.

I ran my hand over my dress again, self conscious while Sam watched me. What could I do to get him to stop staring? “Do you like living in D.C.?”

“I’ve liked it better since two weeks ago.” He sounded so matter-of-fact I had to ask.

“What happened two weeks ago?”

He played with a random curl that couldn’t be shoved back in my twist. “I saw your name on the Montgomery list.”

Oh, God. My knees went weak, and it probably wasn’t the vodka. At least not all of it.

But it was the vodka and schnapps cruising through my veins that made me stand there limp, with blood pumping hot to all the right places, and not run away. It was the alcohol that made me capable of opening my mouth under his when Sam kissed me hard.

In another moment I would have fled if someone I hadn’t seen in years tried to slip me some tongue, especially considering one of us would probably have to be removed from the Montgomery case.

But not right now.

Sam tasted like cheesecake, high school fantasies, and man. I whimpered low in my throat while his stroking tongue worked magic on mine. Tangling my fingers into his hair, I got into the kiss.

It was a bad idea. But at the moment all I knew was he kissed like he meant it, felt like my wildest dreams, and had his hand on my ass. I don’t think two minutes passed before his tie was off, and my fingers were tangled in the crisp, dark hair on his muscled chest. My black skirt fit too tight to step between, but somehow it had managed to ride all the way up my thighs. Sam stood between my legs, his erection pressing unabashedly into me as we kissed with an insane level of abandon.

It had to be the alcohol. It had to be. God, he was so hot.

“I’ve wanted to kiss you for fourteen years,” he growled, nipping on the lobe of my ear. “Fourteen years of fantasizing about that pretty little mouth of yours.”

“Fourteen—” I gasped as he sucked my bottom lip into his mouth. “I don’t believe you,” I managed after he’d abandoned my mouth and moved to my neck.

“You should. It’s true.”

Buy Cat and Mouse today!

Permalink 10 Comments

WHAT COMES FIRST, PLOT OR CHARACTER?

October 12, 2009 at 4:00 am (Rebecca York) (, , , , , , )

MM cover.indd

WHAT COMES FIRST, PLOT OR CHARACTER.
What comes first?  Plot or character?  For me, they’ve got to develop together.  My characters must serve my plot, and my plot must work with my characters.  I could think of a great story about a guy who’s living alone in a mountain cabin and is visited by space aliens, but what’s he doing in that cabin?  Why is he alone?  How is he going to deal with lizard-like creatures knocking on his door?  And the larger question–is the reader going to believe his reactions?
One lesson I learned about my stories.  They’re not reality.  It’s a world I create.  But I’ve got to make it look, sound, feel, taste and smell real to the reader.  The way to do that is by paying attention to every detail from characters and plot to setting and  dialogue.  Yet some details are more important than others.  I’m sure you’ve had the experience of picking up a book and starting to read–then giving up after a few pages or a few chapters.  Why?  Probably because you didn’t like the plot or you couldn’t connect with the characters.
I absorbed a lot about writing techniques through my love of reading.  In my teens, one of my favorite authors was Sinclair Lewis.  He was brilliant at character sketches.  In just a sentence or two, he could get inside the personality of a small town mayor or the head of a major corporation.  But he was much less adept  with plot.  His stories moved slowly, and eventually I stopped reading him.
Contrast that with the action-packed movies being produced today.  They serve up chases, explosions and world-crushing meteors, bombarding the screen one after the other.  But mostly they don’t interest me unless they focus on compelling characters as well. And they justify the action with logic.
I’ve learned my craft from reading authors I admire, by studying movie techniques, and by figuring out what works or falls flat.  Then I go back to my own stories.   Every book I write begins with what I’d call a “cool idea.”
Take my October Berkley release, DRAGON MOON.  What if a frightening dragon-shifter monster from my parallel universe planned to invade our world?  What if he sent a spy here–and she had to figure out how to free herself from his hold on her?
I always plan to start with a gripping first scene that will plunge the reader into the action.  In DRAGON MOON, Vandar, my dragon-shifter monster, flies over his domain, lands and gathers his slaves so he can execute one of them by drinking his blood.  Then he thinks about his current project–invading our world and how he’s going to accomplish it.
He focuses on Kenna, a woman with telekinetic powers.  She’s a slave–but  I don’t want her to be too cowed.  So I decided she’s only been in captivity for the past few months.
Since I’m writing romantic suspense, Kenna will develop a relationship with a man she comes to love.  And because I’m writing a werewolf series, it’s going to be another one of my Marshall men.  Talon Marshall.   I want him in an isolated location, so I have him leading wilderness expeditions–and living at a former hunting lodge in the woods.
Kenna stumbles into our world and immediately gets into trouble when a fallen tree traps her during a thunderstorm.  Talon rescues her, and they’re quickly attracted to each other.  She wants to tell him why she’s in our world, but Vandar has made it impossible to speak of her mission.  When she tries, terrible pains in her head incapacitate her.  So I’ve trapped my characters in what looks like an impossible situation.
I always try to outline my story in advance, because I want to understand where it’s going.  If you don’t know what goal you’re working toward, how can you know how each scene will advance the plot?  But there are always details to discover along the way.  How exactly are Talon and Kenna going to defeat Vandar?  They can’t do it on their own.
They’re going to need the other Marshall werewolves and their mates.  But even with the Marshalls working together, they’re not strong enough to go up against Vandar.  They need someone with powers that equal the dragon- shifters–and he’s the surprise character I throw into the mix.
Because I write romantic suspense, the romance relationship develops as Talon and Kenna are struggling with the danger hanging over them.  Talon’s afraid he’s bonding with a woman he can’t trust.  He knows she’s hiding a secret, and he’s upset that she doesn’t trust him enough reveal it to him.
To give my stories extra punch, I often try to weave more than one threat through the plot.  In this case, as the book starts, Talon has discovered a buried trunk full of stolen money and turned it in to the police.  The bank robber, Mitch Sutton, who stole the money, knows Talon turned it in and wants to get even.  And while Talon is off leading a wilderness expedition, Sutton almost kills Kenna.
The two threats come together when Sutton follows the Marshalls into my parallel universe as they get ready to battle Vandar and his forces.
As the book progresses, plot and character continue to work together.  Kenna and Talon face an escalating series of high-stakes perils, but in every case their reactions to each other and to these threats are the most important factor in every scene.
I try to create the perfect people for my plot, but the characters don’t come fully alive for me until I start writing the book.  It takes me about three chapters to get into their heads deeply enough to know how they will react in each situation they face.  As I write, I may go back and fill in more about their character so the reader can understand them better.  Still, I try never to overload any one part of the story with too much background.  To my way of thinking, “character development” can never be the only reason for a scene.  Each scene has to move the plot forward toward an ending that will satisfy me and the reader.
How do you feel about plot and character?  Do they function together for you?  Or is one more important than the other?

What comes first?  Plot or character?  For me, they’ve got to develop together.  My characters must serve my plot, and my plot must work with my characters.  I could think of a great story about a guy who’s living alone in a mountain cabin and is visited by space aliens, but what’s he doing in that cabin?  Why is he alone?  How is he going to deal with lizard-like creatures knocking on his door?  And the larger question–is the reader going to believe his reactions?

One lesson I learned about my stories.  They’re not reality.  It’s a world I create.  But I’ve got to make it look, sound, feel, taste and smell real to the reader.  The way to do that is by paying attention to every detail from characters and plot to setting and  dialogue.  Yet some details are more important than others.  I’m sure you’ve had the experience of picking up a book and starting to read–then giving up after a few pages or a few chapters.  Why?  Probably because you didn’t like the plot or you couldn’t connect with the characters.

I absorbed a lot about writing techniques through my love of reading.  In my teens, one of my favorite authors was Sinclair Lewis.  He was brilliant at character sketches.  In just a sentence or two, he could get inside the personality of a small town mayor or the head of a major corporation.  But he was much less adept  with plot.  His stories moved slowly, and eventually I stopped reading him.

Contrast that with the action-packed movies being produced today.  They serve up chases, explosions and world-crushing meteors, bombarding the screen one after the other.  But mostly they don’t interest me unless they focus on compelling characters as well. And they justify the action with logic.

I’ve learned my craft from reading authors I admire, by studying movie techniques, and by figuring out what works or falls flat.  Then I go back to my own stories.   Every book I write begins with what I’d call a “cool idea.”

Take my October Berkley release, DRAGON MOON.  What if a frightening dragon-shifter monster from my parallel universe planned to invade our world?  What if he sent a spy here–and she had to figure out how to free herself from his hold on her?

I always plan to start with a gripping first scene that will plunge the reader into the action.  In DRAGON MOON, Vandar, my dragon-shifter monster, flies over his domain, lands and gathers his slaves so he can execute one of them by drinking his blood.  Then he thinks about his current project–invading our world and how he’s going to accomplish it.

He focuses on Kenna, a woman with telekinetic powers.  She’s a slave–but  I don’t want her to be too cowed.  So I decided she’s only been in captivity for the past few months.

Since I’m writing romantic suspense, Kenna will develop a relationship with a man she comes to love.  And because I’m writing a werewolf series, it’s going to be another one of my Marshall men.  Talon Marshall.   I want him in an isolated location, so I have him leading wilderness expeditions–and living at a former hunting lodge in the woods.

Kenna stumbles into our world and immediately gets into trouble when a fallen tree traps her during a thunderstorm.  Talon rescues her, and they’re quickly attracted to each other.  She wants to tell him why she’s in our world, but Vandar has made it impossible to speak of her mission.  When she tries, terrible pains in her head incapacitate her.  So I’ve trapped my characters in what looks like an impossible situation.

I always try to outline my story in advance, because I want to understand where it’s going.  If you don’t know what goal you’re working toward, how can you know how each scene will advance the plot?  But there are always details to discover along the way.  How exactly are Talon and Kenna going to defeat Vandar?  They can’t do it on their own.

They’re going to need the other Marshall werewolves and their mates.  But even with the Marshalls working together, they’re not strong enough to go up against Vandar.  They need someone with powers that equal the dragon- shifters–and he’s the surprise character I throw into the mix.

Because I write romantic suspense, the romance relationship develops as Talon and Kenna are struggling with the danger hanging over them.  Talon’s afraid he’s bonding with a woman he can’t trust.  He knows she’s hiding a secret, and he’s upset that she doesn’t trust him enough reveal it to him.

To give my stories extra punch, I often try to weave more than one threat through the plot.  In this case, as the book starts, Talon has discovered a buried trunk full of stolen money and turned it in to the police.  The bank robber, Mitch Sutton, who stole the money, knows Talon turned it in and wants to get even.  And while Talon is off leading a wilderness expedition, Sutton almost kills Kenna.

The two threats come together when Sutton follows the Marshalls into my parallel universe as they get ready to battle Vandar and his forces.

As the book progresses, plot and character continue to work together.  Kenna and Talon face an escalating series of high-stakes perils, but in every case their reactions to each other and to these threats are the most important factor in every scene.

I try to create the perfect people for my plot, but the characters don’t come fully alive for me until I start writing the book.  It takes me about three chapters to get into their heads deeply enough to know how they will react in each situation they face.  As I write, I may go back and fill in more about their character so the reader can understand them better.  Still, I try never to overload any one part of the story with too much background.  To my way of thinking, “character development” can never be the only reason for a scene.  Each scene has to move the plot forward toward an ending that will satisfy me and the reader.

How do you feel about plot and character?  Do they function together for you?  Or is one more important than the other?

Permalink Leave a Comment

Shapeshifters Who Play Together, Stay Together

July 3, 2009 at 8:23 am (General) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Wildwitch honored my books on her website for the month of July if you want to check it out!

http://www.wildwitch.ca/aotmJulyl2009.htm
You can see how she discovered my wolf books on her comments on the site.  Which made me realize how important paranormal sites are to help spread the word of our love of the paranormal.
I love so many facets of the paranormal, not just shapeshifter stories.  Ghost stories, time travel, you name it, all are favorites of mine.  But I wanted to comment on a well-thought of phrase:
Families who play together, stay together.
In my version, Shapeshifters who play together, stay together. LOL 🙂
I’ve written about my werewolves in fall (Heart of the Wolf, Destiny of the Wolf),  in winter (To Tempt the Wolf, Legend of the White Wolf), and now I’m working on a story set in spring (Seduction of the Wolf, coming April 2010). But I haven’t written a summer story yet. What effect do the seasons have on shapeshifters?

Think, spring, wet wolf smell. LOL Since they’re in Oregon, really wet wolf smell.

Here it is the 4th of July weekend, what would a pack of werewolves be doing? Celebrating the holiday? Were they involved in the War of Independence? Some of the older ones might have been because of their longevity. What about fireworks? They have a strongly sensitive sense of smell, hearing is more sensitive, the smell of smoke isn’t something they’d like. So maybe fireworks wouldn’t be their deal. So what else could they do to celebrate the 4th?
These are questions that I constantly think of as I’m writing my stories. How does a season affect the wolf pack? How does the change in day to night affect them? The location? Micro-setting–the current location they’re in–house, woods, river? Macro-setting–the overall area they’re in, state of Oregon, North American continent?
What makes them so real?
Hope your 4th is full of fun!!! I’m off to mow! 🙂
If I were a werewolf, I’d leave things in their more natural state (just like it is now). But my neighbors probably wouldn’t like it. 🙂 And werewolves, to avoid being discovered, must be on their best behavior. So *sigh*, they’d probably be out mowing the yard too. 🙂
If I haven’t already mentioned it, I’m sharing free serialized stories in my newsletter, Goddess in Training the first one up. The next one will be a published vampire romantic suspense. Just go to the bottom of my website and sign up. If you try and the spammer won’t let you get in, just let me know and I can forward the story via your email address. Thanks!
Terry
www.terryspear.com

 

Permalink 6 Comments

Favourite Shape Shifter Nomination

May 12, 2009 at 6:52 am (Deborah Cooke) (, , , , , )

Erik from KISS OF FATE has been nominated as favourite shape shifter for this week’s contest on Bitten By Books. You can pop by their site this week HERE to vote.

Pretty serious list of nominees there – it’s nice to be in such company!

Deborah Cooke
Alive & Knitting blog

Permalink Leave a Comment

All in a Day’s Work

February 27, 2009 at 4:26 am (Rebecca York) (, , , , , )

eternalmoon-125I was meeting with my critique group last week, and I wanted some help with an incident in the plot of my next Berkley book. But first I needed to fill them in on the story.

I started off by explaining that my hero is a shape-shifting man/dragon. They more or less took that in stride. Then I told them his main food is blood.

“Let me get this straight,” one of my friends said. “He’s a shape-shifting vampire dragon?”

“Yes.”

“Isn’t that a little much?”

“I don’t think so, and I already established his background in DRAGON MOON. So I can’t change it.”

I went on with the plot. “The heroine gets wounded. And his blood has healing powers. So he cuts himself and smears some of his blood on her cut.”

“Okay–so he’s a shape-shifting vampire dragon who is also a natural healer?” the same person asks.

“Um, I guess that’s right. I wasn’t thinking about it quite that way. I was just plotting the book and thought that cutting himself to heal her would make a nice scene. Then I thought–and hey, his blood also has aphrodisiac properties. So after he heals her, they are both really turned on, and they make love. That will also be a really good scene.”

By this time, questioner is taking notes. “So he’s a shape-shifting vampire dragon healer incubus?”

“No! He’s not an incubus. His blood just has aphrodisiac powers.”

“Anything else we should know about him?”

“Yeah, he’s not from earth. He’s a space alien.”

“Does he have to be a space alien?”

“Yes. I already explained, it’s established in DRAGON MOON.”

The original questioner asks, “Can I read DRAGON MOON?”

“No. I just turned it in to Berkley.”

“Okay, let me know as soon as it’s available.”

“I will.”

At that point, someone else says, “Rebecca, I’d like to be inside your mind for fifteen minutes.”

I’m not sure whether that’s a compliment or a complaint. Do my fantasies seem weird to you? Or am I just your normal paranormal romantic suspense author?

Rebecca

Rebecca York (aka Ruth Glick)  **  http://www.rebeccayork.com
ETERNAL MOON, Berkley Sensation, 4/09
MORE THAN A MAN, Harlequin Intrigue, 8/09
MAMMOTH BOOK OF VAMPIRE ROMANCE, Running Press, 8/08

Permalink 5 Comments

Guest Author – Lisa Hendrix of the Immortal Brotherhood Series

January 8, 2009 at 6:44 am (General, Guest Bloggers) (, , , , , , , )

I hope you’ll all join with me in welcoming Lisa Hendrix, author of the Immortal Brothershood series.  I first met Lisa on Facebook.  We chatted about book covers and very kewl music videos, and so I put her on my “to read” list.  I am so glad we met! What an awesome book.  If you love romance with a historical twist, if you love the doomed, tortured shapeshifters, and if you love a heroine who can take both of those and tie their hero’s into knots, then this is the series for you.

So without further ado, (hanging head in shame for stealing her guest’s thunder) I  introduce Lisa Hendrix and The Immortal Brotherhood!

Well, foo.

I was going to write about brainstorming/where we author-types get our ideas, but Teresa beat me to it. Bad hostess. Bad. No cookie. 😉

So…hmm. ‘Scuse me while I //ahem// brainstorm a moment.

Ah. I know. I can talk about the other place some of us get ideas. The Idea Store. You know, the one where you go in, browse the section on— immwarlarge-186x3001What’s that? You don’t know the place? Well, it’s on the corner of Third and— Huh? What do you mean you don’t believe me. I am highly offended. Taking umbrage, even [Aside: Doesn’t taking umbrage sound like something you do at the cloak rack in dark restaurant? “I got confused and took his umbrage instead of my own.”] I’ll have you know, I’ve spent good coin at the Idea Store and…

Still not fooling you, eh.

Okay, I admit it. There is no idea store. But that is an answer I’ve used when a particular annoying sort of “wanna-be-but-doesn’t-want-to-be-bothered-with-the-work” writer starts pestering me. You know, the one who has “this great idea” and wants you to write it so s/he can collect half the royalties.

Usually, I kindly redirect them. If I’m slightly grumpy, I tell them to sit down and write it all out in detail and then we’ll talk—knowing, of course, that they never will, because it they wanted to write it they wouldn’t be soliciting strangers to do it for them.

If I’m utterly out of patience, however, I’ve been known to say something like, “No, I’m sorry. I have an exclusive subscription with the Idea Store, and I’m not allowed to accept ideas from anywhere else.” Then I step back and wait for the wheels to start turning. You can see them: “Idea Store? Maybe I can just sell the idea to them and they’ll find someone who wants to write about Great Aunt Ethel’s encounter with the ghost of Charles Dickens’ bear012secretary and I’ll still make a million dollars.” Then reality hits. “Oh.” And then I’m like, “Excuse me, I have to go pick up my dog at the groomer,” and I’m out of there. (A secret: I don’t have a dog.)

But that’s only when I’m utterly out of patience. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


Getting a little more serious, most of my ideas get worked out in exactly the sort of brainstorming Teresa was talking about. You have a kernel of something—a news clipping, a song title that you think could be turned into a good story, a specter of a scene stuck to the inside of your skull like the scum in an old coffee cup—and you start trying to turn it into something bigger and more useful.

But that’s still begging the question, because what people really want to know when they ask where you get your ideas, is: where does that first kernel come from?

The answer: Anywhere. Everywhere. People who don’t write, especially those who don’t write fiction, think there’s something magic about the idea gathering process. Nope. In reality, they have the ideas, too. They just don’t recognize them as such. They hear that same song title, and may even imagine two lovers dancing to the music. But then they drop it, a passing thought lost forever.


A writer’s mind, however, grabs onto those dancing lovers and twiddles with them. How did they end up dancing? Did she ask him or did he ask her? Who are they? Rewind tape. Ah, I see: she’s older and a bit plain, and she’s surprised that such a young, hunky fox would even talk to her, much less dance with her. How did he learn to dance so well, anyway? Something fishy about that, for sure. And why is that other man watching them so intently. Is he her husband? Her ex? A government agent who thinks she’s about to be assassinated by the dancing hunk? What happens next? And then? And then? A writer scribbles it on paper or mumbles it into a digital voice recorder or texts themselves with the thought, and then keeps churning it over.

IMMORTAL OUTLAW MECH-1


Literally, we can’t leave the kernel alone, sometimes playing the idea out in our heads over and over until it has to come out on paper. (I’ve asked other writers about this and found almost unanimous recognition of the problem/gift.) Undoubtedly, if a shrink ever got hold of us not knowing we were writers, we’d be labelled obsessive. A note in our files would say “Subject suffers from uncontrolled fantasy life, hears voices, and imagines she’s going to make a living from them.”

The idea for The Immortal Brotherhood series landed in my mind as a dream. Now, I’ve long been one to lay in bed half-awake, thinking things through, but this was a case of waking up from a sound sleep with a crystal clear image in my head: a huge, blond man in formal evening wear. I knew only two things about him: he was a bear during daylight hours. And he was a thousand years old. (Those of you who’ve read IMMORTAL WARRIOR will recognize Brand, except for the clothing.) Naturally, my brain couldn’t turn loose of something that juicy, so over the next days and weeks, my imagination ran with questions: How had he gotten turned into a bear? (cursed by a witch) Why was he immortal? (same, part of the curse, so the torture would go on and on) Was he alone? (No. He had this raven on his shoulder, who had once been his best friend) Were there others besides those two?

The answer to that last was a resounding YES, and thus the brotherhood was born. Then I had to work out who all these guys were (Vikings), how many there were (nine—a number goldeneaglesignificant to the Norse gods), and what animals they were (ever try coming up with nine animals that Vikings would have known about in 850 AD that are sexy enough to be romance heroes? I mean, really, a were-boar? Eew.) I had to figure out who’d cursed them and why, and how the curse would play out, and something to make each story different, and an over-arching story that would carry through all nine books, and…

Somewhere in the middle of this, I realized that to get to the guy in evening clothes, the full story would have to cover the thousand-plus years he’d been under the curse. That the other men’s stories would each play out in a different century. That the captain of the crew (my dream guy) would be the last of the warriors to break the curse, and that his friend would stick with him the whole time, even if they never saw each other in human form all those thousands years.

Well, thank goodness for critique partners, the internet, a husband who’s willing to listen to me ramble through scenes aloud even when he has no clue what I’m talking about and who’s also pretty good at asking the kind of question that makes me come up with answers.

And that’s why we (mostly) don’t end up in front of that shrink, because we take that obsessive and uncontrolled fantasy life to a critique partner and talk about it and realizes there’s a whole story, not in the hero and villain, but in the hero’s horndog sidekick and the woman who sets out to seduce him.

Just like Teresa said. (Good hostess. You can have your cookie now.)

Every time I hear this song now, I think Of Lisa’s books ~ Teresa, who is happily eating her cookie now!

—-

Lisa Hendrix is the author of IMMORTAL WARRIOR and the upcoming IMMORTAL OUTLAW (June ’09, Available for Preorder at Amazon and other online sellers), the wife of a patient man, the mother of two impatient children, and a long-time patron of the Idea Store. You can find out more about were-bears, were-ravens, were-eagles, and the other beasts of the Immortal Brotherhood at her website, where her January Jumpstart contest is also live right now.

Permalink 13 Comments

Next page »