Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Wednesday Word: Embonpoint

(Illustration by Duane Bryers)

embonpoint |ˌäNbôNˈpwaNnounthe plump or fleshy part of a person's body, in particular a woman's bosom.ORIGIN late 17th cent.: from French en bon point in good condition.
I don't recall where I picked up this beauty. Might have been a book by Terry Pratchett. Or was it KJ Charles? They are both excellent at broadening my vocabulary.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Wednesday Word: Eldritch

eldritch |ˈeldriCHadjectiveweird and sinister or ghostly: an eldritch screech.ORIGIN early 16th cent. (originally Scots): perhaps related to elf.
I came across this word during my search into all things paranormal. It has a wonderful ring.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Charmed and Dangerous Update and Cover Reveal

A few months ago Jordan Castillo Price asked me if I'd be interested in contributing a short story to an anthology she was putting together. I didn't have to think about it twice—it was a no brainer. Especially, considering the other authors involved. 

The tricky bit was deciding on the story. Fortunately, I have a Moleskine notebook where I jot down stray ideas, disembodied dialogues, and other random bits and bobs. One struck my fancy right away: a comic take on the old trope of the narrator looking into a mirror and describing what he sees. In my version he does just that, but the visage in the mirror isn’t his own reflection.

This is how it happens in the final telling:

 A blond man with blue eyes and cheekbones sharp enough to etch crystal looked at me from the mirror. Even my regrettably caffeine-starved brain registered the wrongness of this image. I knew for a fact that my own coloration was dull brown and the less was said of my cheekbones, the better.

Mirror-man waited patiently while I stared. His good looks were as overdramatic as the sky outside. His left brow twitched in a familiar way. "Good morning, Detective Mulligan."

“Good morning, Leslie,” I said. “To what do I owe the pleasure?” I was aiming for sarcasm but I’d had too few hours of sleep to hit the bullseye.

He gave me a toothy smile. “I'm happy to see you too, Buttercup. Or should I say Teddybear?”

I scratched my—admittedly hairy—chest. “Whatever you want, Les, just get on with it.” Leslie Morland, assistant to Captain Karl Parker, my boss, had many excellent qualities. Short-windedness wasn’t one of them.

“The Captain wants to see you as soon as you get in.”

“You could’ve called on the phone, like normal people. Or, even better, leave a note on my desk.”

“Biannual test of alternate communications—Captain’s mandate.” His lips formed a lewd curve. “And I wouldn’t want to pass up my chance to see you in your morning glory. Besides, I wanted to be sure you actually made it in before noon.”

“I had a late night,” I grumbled, and it was true—I hadn’t gotten home from the stakeout till the wee hours.

“So I heard. Nonetheless, Captain Parker would love to see you in person, the sooner the better. I’ve been waiting for you to rise for the last twenty minutes. You should really put a mirror into your bedroom.” His leer deepened. “Over the bed would be ideal.”

“Not in your dreams,” I retorted. Departmental use of mirrors for communications was strictly regulated and safeguarded with multiple layers of security hexes, but nothing was ever a hundred percent safe. There was always a small chance one of those rogue hacker wizards—wackers for short—could get through. In over a decade on the Force I developed a healthy dose of paranoia.

Leslie pursed his lips—they got a lot of exercise. “I beg to differ. Everything’s possible in my dreams.” His voice switched to business—more or less. “Pleasantries aside, when can we expect you to grace us with your manly presence?”

“Forty minutes. Now go away; I need to shave.”

To get to this point, however, I had to figure out who was looking into the mirror and who was looking back and how all this came about. The process involved figuring out the man character’s name, job, his back story, and the world around him, where mirrors could do funny things. It was an exhilarating process, filled with possibilities and potential, and I succeed a little too well. One Hex Too Many is the first my story entirely set in an alternate universe/reality, but not the last one. I’m already working on the sequel.

If you like m/m paranormal romance and or urban fantasy Charmed and Dangerous is guaranteed to have something to tickle your fancy. It’ll come out on August 25, but is available for preorder on Amazon already. Have fun!

(Isn't that cover just sexy?)

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

BIG Announcement


There’s this frakking big paranormal anthology coming out in a month and I can’t wait to read it. Oh, and I have a story in there too. It’s one illustrious company. Check out the official announcement:

Immerse Yourself
In TEN worlds of Magic

It’s magical. It’s man on man. And I promise you, my friends, it’s massive. I’ve put together an all new, all-star m/m paranormal anthology. It’s coming August 25, and I can’t wait to unveil it.

There’s something in this gigantic collection for everyone: ghosts and goblins, spellcasters and shifters. You’ll find a great mix of fresh new storyverses and riveting standalone stories from several popular m/m series.

Just check out our m/m rock star lineup!

Astrid Amara
KJ Charles
Charlie Cochet
Rhys Ford
Ginn Hale
Lou Harper
Jordan L Hawk
Nicole Kimberling
Jordan Castillo Price
Andrea Speed

And keep your eyes peeled for our cover reveal on July 21.

The antho is massive, over 180,000 words, I’ve been told. What happened is that some of us suck at following directions and flew way over the word count goal. And writing too much is not my usual problem. But Astrid was the worst offender.

JCP designed one smolderingly sexy cover, I can’t wait to show it off. STAY TUNED!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Wednesday Word: Goblin

goblin |ˈgäblinnouna mischievous, ugly, dwarflike creature of folklore.ORIGIN Middle English: from Old French gobelin, possibly related to German Kobold (see koboldor to Greek kobalos mischievous goblin. In medieval Latin Gobelinus occurs as the name of a mischievous spirit, said to haunt Évreux innorthern France in the 12th cent.
Lately I've been researching supernatural creatures of myth and folklore. To my surprise, I found a profusion of diminutive creatures, whose sole purpose in life is to vex humans. Kobold, goblin, hobgoblin, imp, and boggart are just a few of their names.

They go back all the way to ancient Greece where kobaloi—plural for kobalos—were messing with people's heads and property. They are called dokkaebi in Korea and duende in Latin America, and I'm sure there are many more.

Their range is wide—they live in fields, marshes, along streams or waterfalls, and often in barns or people's homes, though staying invisible most of the time. Their common characteristic is their mischievous nature. Even the benevolent ones tend to be temperamental. Goblins and pixies make the milk go sour or cause travelers lose their way. 

We don't believe in invisible fairy-creature anymore, but I suspect goblins and their cousins are exceptionally adaptable. Like urban foxes and hawks that nest on skyscrapers, they've followed us into the city. They are the ones who misplace our  keys and steal socks from the dryer. It's the only logical explanation.