Thursday, 3 September 2015

Throwback Thursday

I am so bad at keeping my blogs current. I have enough trouble coming up with posts for book tours etc, then when I have to do something original for my blogs I'm hopeless. In a pathetic attempt to fill time and space, and with everything going retro these days I thought it might amuse you my audience of one, to look back at what was going on in the beginning. This blog is now, amazingly three years old and it might be interesting for me, also, to see what I was up to three years ago,

My very first blog post, back in January 2012 said this

Welcome to my very first blog.

If you are reading this then I have to give you a big cyber hug and say thank you for giving me your time.

I have just been very privileged to have my first two books publised. They can be found here http://www.allromanceebooks.com/storeSearch.html?searchBy=author&qString=Nephylim

Or http://www.bookstrand.com/the-unfairness-of-life

Or http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4462803.Nephylim

I am so excited and I would be eternally grateful if you would take a look, have a read and then leave some comments at the goodreads site.

In some of the places you can read a good chunk of the book so you can see how great I am


 Oh how naive I was. I figure I pretty much still am

My first entertaining blog post was on 17th January, and was a consideration of two different aesthetics of beauty


I have been looking at lots of blogs and it appears that lots of people like the beefy man, rather than the beautiful. Now I happen to disagree so, drop me a comment and let me know if you prefer

BEEFCAKE


 
OR BEAUTY


I think it is pretty obvious who and what I prefer ;)

I think that Andrej Peijic is the most beautiful man who ever walked the earth. NOTE: I have since changed my opinion, not least because she never really was a man, and second because I found someone else to obsess over :) Andreja was always more Maria's obsession than mine, although at least now I know why her eyes were always so haunted.

I am sure that many of you will disagree so tell me :)


And there you have it. My first blundering steps in blogging. Next week maybe we'll take a look at some of the guests I've had along the way and maybe reintroduce some of the more fun ideas I started.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Wednesday Briefs. Demon Chapter Twelve



Here is another Wednesday, the day before school starts. I know a lot of parents can't wait for school but we've had such a good time this year over the summer, I'm probably more devastated than he is :)

Anyway, lets cheer myself up with another flash and a picture of kittens, which is the prompt I chose this week



I am still so confused. One minute my love is grovelling at the feet of a tyrant, and the next he is being petted by the most beautiful woman I have ever seen, while the very tyrant watches with an expression alternating between fondness and distain. Jandra seems as confused as I am.

“What the hell’s going on?” she asks.

“Jandra, please,” her mother scolds. “There is no need for coarse language.”

“Coarse language? I’ll say a lot worse if you don’t tell me what’s going on.”

“All in its time,” the queen says. She holds her hand out to me. “Come, sit with me and we will talk.”
I glance at the king, who nodded. There was none of the fondness in his eyes they held when regarding his son, but that is as it should be.

I sit down, but not in the seat indicated by the queen. I must be with my prince and, as there is no place for me on the seat beside him, I sink to the ground and lean against his leg. I feel the shock shudder through him, and his hand on my hair appears to be a reflex. Nevertheless, it feels good.

I jump, startled, when something cold and wet touches my hand, Ducking my head slightly reveals a basket, half under the seat, which contains a kindle of sleeping, orange and white kittens. The heart–warming cries of the waking creatures soften my heart as they tumble over each other and climb out of the basket on wobbly legs.

One of the kittens, braver than the rest, had already approached me, and its nose what the stimulus that prompted my attention. This little fellow led its brothers and sisters in a rough–and– tumble game to scale my legs.

“You certainly seem to have a way with animals, Tian,” the Queen said, leaning down to fondle one of the kittens with her small, neat hand. “These are no ordinary kittens. Are you familiar with firecats?”

Familiar with them? I shudder. Firecats are the fiercest wild cats in the kingdom. Whilst not among the largest in the feline community, they were feared for their keen hunting instinct and wild natures. They are called ‘fire’ cats because the merest scratch from their razor caws burns like fire and their poison sends fire through the blood. These are kits though, so their claws are not yet venomous.

“Indeed, Your Majesty, although fortunately I have not had cause to feel their fire for myself.”

The queen laughed. Taking a handful of nuts from a bowl at her side, she scatters them, and my prince’s leg shakes as he laughs at the antics of the kittens as they chase the nuts, tumbling and falling over each other.

“If you’ve had enough playing with the kittens,” Jandra says sourly “perhaps someone can tell us what the hell’s going on.”

“Relax, dear,” the queen says, “your father can explain everything.”

Everyone turns their eyes toward the king who straightens his back and clasps his hands behind him.

“I believe we owe you an apology for the treatment you were given. However, had you heeded your father’s advice, it would never have happened.”

“My…my father’s advice?”

Of all the things I might have expected to hear, this was the least of them. I do not need to wrack my brains to recall the advice of which he speaks. The last I spoke to my father he had forbidden me to leave our lands until he had made proper arrangements. If only I had listened. But the call of my heart was too loud.

“You father and I have been talking for some time. Do you realize your rash actions might have caused years of talks and careful planning to swept aside, or at the least put back by a significant portion.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Neither do I,” my betrothed ventured, his forehead furrowed by concern. “You knew?” he says, his voice coloured with anger. “All this time you knew where the demons were, and you were talking to them? Why did you allow the myths to continue? Why did you not tell everyone the demons are not demons; are not a threat?”

Warmth floods my heart that my prince would defend me so.

“Oh they are a threat. Make no mistake with that. They are the greatest threat we face, which is why I have been working so hard on the talks. I will not go into any of that; not in Tian’s presence. Such things are best discussed around a negotiating table with ones cards tightly clutched to one’s chest.”

“It is our way to have our cards laid down face upward on the table, if indeed we have cards at all.”

“And that is why your kind have been driven into the darkness of the swamps while we bask in the sunshine.”

Amusement suffuses my body with warmth. It bubbles in my heart and lifts my spirit. “If that is what you think,” I say, with a warm smile for my beloved, “then you have not seen as many of our cards as you believe you have.”

“What do you mean?” the king asks sharply.

“It is for me to explain. If my father has not seen fit to invite you in to our heartland, it is not for me to tell you what you would find there.”

“You are as slippery as your father.”

“Not at all. I just do not wish to upset the balance of the negotiations. You appreciate that I would not be so well received at home were I to have upset the talks to our disadvantage.”

The king laughed, a deep, sincere laugh. “You are your father’s son, no doubt. Remind me when next we speak, to inquire why he did not see fit to inform me that when you came seeking a mate, it would be my son and not my daughter you claimed.”

“Does it make a difference?”


SO there we go. The secret is out. The king has been negotiating with demons. I wonder how that will go down - with the people of the kingdom, and the demons. Come to think of it, why were they negotiating? What changed to bring them together? Might there be a common threat perhaps? Something neither of them has a hope of defeating alone? Is it physical or some kind of plague? Oooh, I have no idea. Can't wait to write it to find out.

In the meantime go check out the rest of the flashers this week

Monday, 31 August 2015

Alex's Surprise and Saving Alex by Chris McHart

Alex's Suprise - Chris McHart


Alex’s Surprise: Alex wanted a night of hot passion with Gerome, but he gets more than he ever bargained for. His life will be changed forever in a world where he’ll be thrown in jail— or worse— for being pregnant.

Alex’s best friend, Sam, has been acting strange ever since he met Alex’s one-night stand, but now Alex needs help in order to hide, and Sam is his only hope.

Saving Alex – Chris McHart



Saving Alex: Not only is Alex pregnant, something punishable by jail time, but Gerome, the father of the baby, is a vampire prince. When strangers invade Alex’s home and kidnap him, he doesn’t know who is responsible, if he’ll ever see the man he loves again, or even get to see the child growing inside him.

Considering himself the father of his lover’s child, Sam has a hard time standing around and letting others plan Alex’s rescue. But when the Prince and his trackers find an important clue, the race to save his beloved is on. Now all he can do is cross his fingers that the scheme they’ve devised will work.

When Prince Gerome receives ransom demands, the instructions are clear: mate a complete stranger or he’ll never see Alex or the child he carries again. Will he be able to convince his newly intended to help, or will those seeking to dethrone his family win this evil game of blackmail?

Caution: Contains a kidnapping, unwanted matings, a scheming king, way too many people that follow their own plans and a highly pregnant Alex


Cover Artist: Meg Bawden of Bawd Designs

Sales Links



Excerpt

Alex zapped, annoyed, through the channels. He lounged on the couch, bored out of his mind. Sam, his best friend and roommate, had taken up the recliner, reading something. Maybe Alex should do that as well? Watching TV wasn’t going to keep him entertained, since nothing caught his interest, no movie, no documentary, nothing. He zapped on, but stopped at a news report showing a pregnant man. He sat up a bit straighter. What was up with that?

The man’s stomach was swollen, showing he was at least five or six months along. His hands were cuffed in front of his baby bump and tears were streaming down his face. The camera showed a courtroom full of people, slowly sweeping over the interested men and women watching the process.

Alex turned up the volume. What had the man done? And why was he pregnant? He’d heard it was possible, but he’d never encountered someone who’d actually experienced that.

The reporter’s voice came up. “Robert B. was tried for violation of the racial laws. Today’s sentencing was long awaited. No one had heard of pregnant men for years, and there had been uncertainty about the actual jurisdiction in such cases. B., who is, according to doctors, six months along, was sentenced to five years in jail. His child will be put in an orphanage until he is released. 
The fathering sire has no legal claim over the child. He will be able to visit his child, but he can’t get guardianship over him or her. The child and the carrier will be outcasts of society after that.

“B. broke down after hearing the judge’s decision. Even though it’s forbidden, he clearly hoped the old laws would be overturned. Instead, the judge confirmed that male breeding between the races is still forbidden and punishable. With that, back to the studio.”

The picture changed, now showing a woman in a suit, smiling at the camera. “Thanks to our reporter in Berlin for a summary of today’s events in court. Now to the weather…”

Alex turned down the volume, muting the forecast. He turned to Sam, who had apparently put down his book to watch the news as well. “Did you hear that? How can they judge someone because he got pregnant?”

“I have no idea? Maybe because it’s wrong? Are these children dangerous? I’ve never met one, or heard of one, for that matter, but I guess there’s a reason it’s forbidden. The whole pregnant man thing is so strange, no wonder it’s against the laws. Who knows what’ll come out of such breedings.”

Alex frowned. A new life was precious, not wrong. He couldn’t imagine a child being dangerous, even if it was mixed. Children born from interracial relationships were allowed, as long as one of the parents was female and the other male. Why this didn’t apply to children born from a same-sex relationship was beyond Alex. Even if it was unusual for a man to be pregnant, he shouldn’t be put in jail for something like that.

This was the first case in a long time, according to the reporter, but he’d not given a reason why the laws were upheld. “It’s still wrong to judge someone for getting pregnant.”

“I don’t know. Like I said, there must be a reason why it’s forbidden.” Sam picked up his book again, ending the conversation. Alex took a moment to study his friend’s features as he buried himself in yet another sci-fi book. He was quite handsome with his blond, unruly hair and his strong jaw. The gaze of the piercing blue eyes that never seemed to miss anything flew over the page, pulling Sam into yet another outlandish adventure.

Maybe Sam was right. There had to be a reason it was against the law. Alex was kind of sorry for the man who now faced five years in prison, but then, the man knew what he risked with getting pregnant in the first place.

Alex settled back and focused on the TV again. Sam was not in the mood to discuss the matter anymore, his mind clearly on the story he was reading. As if they’d need sci-fi to experience something unusual. Ever since paranormals had come out of hiding back in the 1980s, going to certain clubs could be more adventurous than anything an author could come up with.

Maybe he should go out today? Blowing off some steam wouldn’t hurt. He’d not gotten laid in quite a while, and a night in one of the mixed clubs sounded too good to resist. It was better than staring at a rerun of a movie.

Alex switched off the TV and stood. “I’m going out, do you want to come with me?”

“What do you have in mind?” Sam looked up from his book. “Dancing? I thought of going to the Downtown.”

“Na, go without me. I’m not in the mood for that crowd.”

“You sure? It’s been months since you’ve been out.” Alex wasn’t surprised, Sam wasn’t one to go out much, and he despised big crowds. The Downtown is a huge mixed club, catering to all kinds of paranormals and humans. Not that paranormals were forbidden anywhere, but they, as well as humans, preferred to stick with their own kind. One of the exceptions was a club like the one Alex was going to visit. A night of dancing, and maybe getting laid, sounded better with every second.

Interview

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Chris McHart, author of Alex’s Surprise and Saving Alex
Hi Chris, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

1) Describe your book to us.
Both of the books are about Alex finding his love not in the man who got him pregnant, but in his best friend Sam. He somehow managed to never realize how much Sam loved him, until Sam is there in the darkest hour.

2) Have you ever read something that made you think differently about your genre? Can you tell us what it was?
When I had to go and check whether is was a mm book, since one of the characters sounded like a woman. I hate such books. If I want that, I’d read a mf. If I want to read mm, I want two men! It made me realize how much I love the mm genre (I knew that before, but it was a really eye opener for me). 

3) Tell us about your character’s family life?
Alex and Sam are both orphans, and when they lost their parents in a car accident, they leaned heavily on each other.

4) Compare yourself to your main character.
OMG, what a question. Alex is a party animal who loves one-night stands. I’m married, and my idea of a great evening is writing or watching TV with my husband

5) Describe your past week as a type of landscape or a weather forecast.
A beach, since I was on vacation! 

I wish I was there with you Chris. Thank you for giving us a little window into the lives of your character. 

We've heard a little about Alex, now let's find out a little more about Chris

Chris McHart is from Germany and, while an accountant, writing is Chris’s real passion.

Chris likes to spend time with family and has way too many animals that demand constant attention. Chris also enjoys landscaping and cooking.

Whenever Chris has a free minute, it’s spent writing on a laptop, a cup of coffee in hand, deeply lost in the worlds Chris’s muses have created.

When coming up for some air, you’ll find Chris on a lot of social networks. Check out Chris’s website to see where you can find out more. Chris looks forward to hearing from you!




Thursday, 27 August 2015

Signs of Life by Melanie Hansen


Author Name: Melanie Hansen

Book Name: Signs of Life

Release Date: September 28, 2015




Blurb:
Successful lawyer Jeremy Speer has it all—a loving husband, a beautiful home, and a cherished dream that’s about to become reality. He’s learned not to take happiness for granted, meeting the challenges of life and love head-on with unwavering commitment and fierce devotion. A series of tragic events leave Jeremy shattered, adrift on a sea of unimaginable pain. He’s able to piece his life back together, but instead of embracing it, he merely exists, using isolation and punishing physical exertion to keep the world at bay.
 High school teacher Kai Daniels has a heart for at-risk kids—he was one himself, and a teenage brush with the law and some troubled years behind bars left him scarred inside and out. With courage, hard work, and the support of friends, he’s built a fulfilling life that leaves no time for a relationship.
An intense encounter with Kai at a gay club ignites a spark in Jeremy that he thought was extinguished forever, but he’s unwilling to destroy the fragile peace he’s managed to create, and he leaves Kai humiliated and disappointed. Things should have ended there, but a bizarre occurrence brings the two together in a way neither of them expected.



Excerpt:
Jeremy almost flinched as the man’s eyes met his but somehow he managed not to. There was something vaguely familiar about him, which was why Jeremy had been watching him in the first place, but he was positive they’d never met. This man was unforgettable. When Jeremy had first walked into the club, so noisy and crowded, he’d almost turned around and left. It was a mad impulse that led him here in the first place, and it had been so long since Jeremy was impulsive that he felt shaken and out of his depth. That fact alone had stiffened his resolve to stay for at least a little while; then he’d gotten a glimpse of the beautiful, exotic man, and nothing could have convinced him to leave.
The first thing that struck Jeremy was how confident he seemed, how he held himself. Here was a man who knew who he was and was comfortable in his own skin. He was simply dressed in a tight black graphic T-shirt and jeans, but when he’d stood up from his stool to dig his wallet out of his back pocket to pay for his drink, Jeremy’s mouth watered as the jeans slid down to ride low on the man’s hips, showing a slice of muscled belly.
His shoulders were broad, his torso slim and compact yet rippling with muscle under the tight shirt. Long, lean legs were showcased by the soft, worn jeans, black boots completing the look. As Jeremy stood at the edges of the sheltering crowd and stared, he noticed the leather bracelets and silver rings the man sported on his wrists and hands, his eyes following the corded forearms up to a tattoo that was just visible on his right bicep, the lower edge of it peeking out of the sleeve of the shirt.
Jeremy edged closer, lust surging through him, his eyes drinking in thick black hair, carelessly styled, and a nose that had been broken before but did nothing to detract from the man’s startling good looks. As he tilted his head back to take a long swallow of his beer, Jeremy’s mouth watered at the arch of his throat, the muscles working as he swallowed, a pair of sinful lips wrapped around the tip of the bottle like Jeremy suddenly wanted them wrapped around the tip of his cock, drinking him down as Jeremy emptied his balls against the back of his throat….
Then the man’s eyes met his, the predatory heat in them making Jeremy’s knees weak. As the man licked his lips, Jeremy noticed with a jolt he was sporting a hoop through the lower one, emphasizing the plump fullness of it, and the simmering lust ramped up into raging hunger. Helplessly Jeremy moved closer, the man holding his gaze, the eyeliner he had lightly applied around his amazing golden eyes making him look even more exotic, dangerous.
Jeremy got as close as he could, the people massed around the bar making it difficult to get next to his target. The man looked Jeremy up and down leisurely, all the way to his feet and back up to his flushed and burning face; then he slowly spread his knees wide, making room for Jeremy between them. Jeremy moved in, feeling like he was strangling, his chest tight, the need to touch, kiss, lick and bite overwhelming him.
“Hey,” the man said, his voice deep and husky, lightly accented.
Jeremy swallowed, then nodded, all of his senses focused on the heat of the man’s body close to his, the way his legs looked splayed around Jeremy’s hips.
“Are you here with anyone?” he asked, annoyed at how abrupt his voice sounded. He wasn’t used to making small talk anymore, wasn’t used to the mating dance between strangers. It had been so easy with Brent: a backyard barbeque with friends, an introduction, mutual attraction and easy conversation leading to an invitation to dinner. They hadn’t spent more than a day or two apart after that.
The thought of Brent was like ice water on his ardor, and he could feel himself shutting down, wondering what the hell he was doing. Just as he was about to take a step back and leave, he felt the man settle his warm hands on his hips, stroking the skin between his shirt and the waistband of his jeans with a rough thumb.
“Just a friend,” the man said softly. Jeremy struggled to focus, remembering he’d just asked if he was here with anyone. The thumb caressing Jeremy’s sensitive skin was rough, callused, and it felt so good. It had been so long since he’d been touched….
Jeremy took a deep breath. He could do this… he wanted to do this. It was just fucking, just mutual pleasure with a willing stranger, a stranger he would never lay eyes on again. Purging his thoughts of anything except need, lust, he laid his hands high on the man’s splayed thighs, drawing circles with this thumbs along the inner seam of his jeans, flirting with his crotch but not quite touching.
“I want to fuck you,” Jeremy blurted, hating himself for his ineptness, his cheeks flushing hotter as the man’s amazing eyes filled with amusement.
“Yeah, I got that, amigo,” he said, tightening his grip on Jeremy’s hips to keep him from moving away. “And I want to let you.”

Sales Links:

About the author:

Melanie Hansen has spent time in Texas and Florida prisons…for work.   She’s been in a room with a 17-year-old mass murderer who was also one of the most soft-spoken and polite teenagers she’s ever met.  After a 13-year career as a court reporter, she can tell many stories both hilarious and heartbreaking.
She grew up with an Air Force dad, and ended up marrying a Navy man.  After living and working all over the country, she hopes to bring these rich and varied life experiences to her stories about people finding love amidst real-life struggles.
Melanie left the stressful world of the courtroom behind and now enjoys a rewarding career transcribing for a deaf student.  She currently lives in Arizona with her husband and two sons.

Where to find the author:

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25568156-signs-of-life




Tour Dates & Stops:



AND HERE IS THE COVER YOU'VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR



Now we have been treated to a rare glimpse into how the writer found her cover boy

IT NEVER HURTS TO ASK.  That is my new mantra.  IT NEVER HURTS TO ASK!
I discovered Cory Zwierzynski when I saw gifs of his Andrew Christian “Kiss” video on Tumblr…


(Do yourself a favor and watch the whole video, so HOT!  http://www.andrewchristian.com/index.php/kiss.html )

Once I tracked down who the sexy man with the smirk was, I searched out everything I could find about him, and learned that he’s an Andrew Christian exclusive model.  I watched all of his Andrew Christian videos and drooled over all of his pics.  I followed him on every social media known to man.

(Follow him on Instagram, it’s worth it!  https://instagram.com/coryz07/ )

When I began writing Signs of Life, the physical description of my character, Kai, started to become Cory in my head.  The eyes, the hair, the tattoo, the attitude…Cory was Kai.  So when it came time for the cover art, I couldn’t stop thinking, what if?  What if I could get Cory for my cover?

Nah, that will never happen.  Andrew Christian will laugh you out of town.

I told myself that over and over, talking myself out of it, until I brought up the idea to my friend Kenya one day.  She told me, “What do you have to lose?  The worst that could happen is they would say ‘no’ or totally ignore you.  So what?  At least you’d know.” 

So I screwed up my courage, emailed Drew LaQuang, Cory’s booking person, and asked if I could license a picture of Cory for the cover of my book, explaining that I was a huge fan of his.  Within a few hours I had my answer:  “Sure!”

Cue intense fangirling and celebration!  (My friend Monica heard me screaming all the way from Brazil and messaged me to ask what was going on, LOL).

I contacted Paul Richmond, the art director at Dreamspinner, and asked about the steps I’d need to follow for licensing a picture.  He was extremely helpful, sent over the legal forms I had to have, and made sure I was aware of the size requirements, pixels, etc., for cover art.

Unfortunately all the pictures I found on the Andrew Christian website were too low-res to be used, so I emailed Drew and asked if they had higher-resolution pics I could look at.  He immediately and graciously opened their photo archives to me, and I was able to browse at my leisure.

When I found one that I liked and that my cover artist, Natasha Snow, could work with, I filled out the licensing form and emailed it to Drew, who had it back to me in a few hours.  I forwarded it to Paul and boom, I had my cover model.  I had my actual face cast for Kai on my cover!

(Club Kai)


(Teacher Kai)

The whole experience has been amazing.  I can’t emphasize enough how awesome the Andrew Christian organization is.  Nobody laughed at me, nobody said ‘No,’ nobody said ‘Figure it out.’  Every time I emailed with a question or a problem (the low-res pics), Drew wrote me back in a timely fashion and helped me resolve it.

For a huge, multimillion dollar company to do that for some strange woman who emailed them out of the blue, that says a lot about their customer service and their appreciation of their fans.  Andrew Christian and Drew made everything easy and painless, and now I have a cover that’s personal, and beautiful, and means a lot to me.

So from now on my mantra is, and I encourage everyone to adopt it because you just never know…IT NEVER HURTS TO ASK!

I’d love to hear about your favorite face cast for your favorite book characters!  Share them in the comments!

(All photos in this post used by permission from Andrew Christian, Inc.)



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