Category Archives: Snow and the Seventh Wolf

Snow and the Seventh Wolf Release

Release the Wolves

a special Thursdays Bite

Snow and the Seventh Wolf is out and ready for purchase! WOOT!

When readers finish Little Red Riding Wolf one of the things they’ve said over and over is that Seth needs to be taken down a peg or two. Even my editor from Passion and Print asked for Seth’s story. So here it is, finally, and just in time for my favorite month…February, the month of love.

Blurb/Book Description:

Exiled for attempting to kill his sister’s lover, the last thing Seth needs is to be saddled with a human. But Seth can’t turn his back when he discovers Snow fleeing from her avaricious step-parents murder plot. Isolated in a cabin in the woods, Snow attempts seduction and Seth discovers even werewolves are vulnerable to passion’s temptation. Seth’s angry struggles against his desire drive him away, but his over-protective alpha nature won’t let him abandon a female in distress. With Snow in danger again, can Seth overcome his prejudices in time to save Snow from her step-parents’ evil plan?

Presenting for your enjoyment an excerpt from Chapter One:

Snow Electra Jazzman slid her sunglasses down and frowned
at Ron as he passed the turn leading to the only decent coffee
shop in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
“I thought we were going for coffee?”
“Um, well, we are.” Ron darted a look at her, turning his
watery blue eyes back to the twisting mountain road before she
could really read him. “But first, I thought we should take a
hike. Get to know each other better.”
Snow repressed a sigh and slid the sunglasses back. “You
know, you really don’t need to do this.”
After her dad had died, Snow’s stepmother had run through
men almost as fast as she ran through bottles of wine. Ron, her
latest husband, had seemed okay. At least he’d never tried to get
it on with Snow.
Until now.
“My stepmother doesn’t care if you get to know me,” she
said. “In a month, I’ll be twenty-one. You’ll never have to see
me again.”
“Tell you what…” This time he didn’t even look at her.
“We’ll stop…here.”
He eased the BMW off the main road and onto a narrow dirt
track that Snow hadn’t even noticed. And, instead of stopping,
he drove into the woods until she couldn’t see even a glimpse of
the main road.
A thousand nerves skittered across Snow’s neck.
She rubbed the skin under her jacket collar, hard. This was
it. She knew the signs. Time to fend off another stepfather.
Ron finally stopped the car. “Here’s a good spot.” It was dead
quiet in the isolation of the BMW. He rubbed his hands on his
pants, back and forth. Back and forth then got out of the car.
2 Jessica Aspen
This was bad. None of the others had even bothered to take
her away from the house. She looked at the deep dark woods
and shivered, zipped her jacket up to her chin and stiffened her
spine.
She wasn’t a little girl anymore, she was a grown woman. Her
body, her decision. Screw him and Elena. The minute she had
access to her trust fund, she was gone.
Ron came around the car and held her door open. She shot
him a look that was supposed to tell him he was fooling himself,
but he just grinned his trademark cheesy TV grin and said,
“Come on, we’ll just stroll up the trail a little.”
The heavy overcast sky made Snow feel even colder than
the winter mountain temperature outside. As intimate as being
with Ron in the BMW had seemed a moment before, now she
didn’t want to leave the car.
“Can’t we do this in the car?” She glanced pointedly down
at her new white suede boots and then at the mud. “Or better
yet, over coffee?”
“Elena said we should walk.” Ron’s forehead creased, he
shook back his overlong sweep of artificial blond hair they all
pretended hid his receding hairline. “I’d feel better if we could
walk.”
Snow sighed, and got out of the car. Better get this over with.
She’d handled the others, she’d handle him. And then she’d
only have a month to deal with his wounded ego.
“This is pretty remote,” she said, shivering. The cold was
already leaking through the thin soles of her boots. At least
the cabin they’d rented for the week was in an enclave of other
expensive vacation retreats. If she’d needed to, she could have
run for help.
Here, the only sound she could identify was the wind
shushing through the trees. The immense quiet seemed heavy
and forbidding compared to the bright lights and constant
motion of LA.
Snow and the Seventh Wolf 3
Ron aimed the remote behind them and the lock snicked
closed.
The spidering on her neck trickled down her spine.
She didn’t want to do this.
She only had thirty days to go, living with her stepmother—
and fighting off another stepfather was not in her plans. Then
again, coming to Wyoming hadn’t been in her plans either, but
she had no choice until she received her inheritance.
She was counting the days, the hours, the minutes.
Shoulders back, she followed Ron to the gap in the dark wall
of trees.
“How far do you want to go?” She peered at the trail that
almost seemed to disappear into a dark hole as it turned up the
incline. A lacy flake landed on her nose, melted and slid down
the side of her cheek. She shivered.
“I would have dressed differently if you’d said we were going
out in the cold.” She sounded bitchy. She didn’t care. He should
have at least bought her the coffee first.
Ron frowned over his shoulder. “I’m sorry,” he said and
entered the tunnel made by the trees. “Elena said there was a
good spot not too far ahead.”
His whipped dog expression, and the fact that she suspected
he really was afraid of her stepmother, kept her walking up
the trail behind him. She didn’t know what Elena had to do
with this, but his constant reference to Elena didn’t feel like
the typical play for the younger step-daughter. Maybe he wasn’t
going to try it on. Maybe he really wanted to talk. She focused
on trying to find some beauty in the dark oppressive woods and
put aside her fears about where this was heading.
The first few fat white flakes scattering through the air were
pretty. Despite the heavy grey sky, and the sharp incline of the
trail, her pre-caffeine grumpiness began to lift. They’d have their
talk, turn around, and go get the coffee. Before long she’d be
back at the cabin, warm in her own room, where she could once
4 Jessica Aspen
again dream of a future free from Elena.
Trudging around a group of leafless bushes she nearly ran
into Ron, who had come to a dead halt in the middle of the
trail. She stumbled to a stop, catching herself just shy of the edge
of the tremendous drop she hadn’t even seen.
“What the…” The heavy swirls of flakes lightened for a
moment, the dark clouds opened up and the snowy white peaks
of the Grand Tetons appeared, illuminated by a fleeting shaft
of sunlight.
“Oh!” She smiled at Ron, startled by the beauty into a
surprising camaraderie. “For once Elena was right, this is
amazing.”
“Pretty isn’t it?”
“Yes.” Snow agreed and chose to ignore his flat tone, focusing
on the view.
It really was pretty. The light from the gap in the clouds
looked like the hand of God in the final scene in a fifties movie.
So over the top you’d never believe it was real.
She turned back to face Ron, but he’d moved around till he
was on the downhill side of the path, between her and the path
back to the car.
“Thanks for bringing me here. It’s gorgeous.” Her smile
faltered. He wasn’t smiling back. His thin blue eyes avoided hers
and he swallowed noisily, his Adam’s apple bobbing. He shifted
his weight from foot to foot, his smooth, botoxed face tight and
strained. Snow’s smile fled.
This was it.
“I’m sorry, Snow.”
She tensed, waiting for his move, but he just stood there,
hands buried deep in the pockets of his parka.
“Sorry for what?” Her voice came out tight and reedy. She
braced for action. She knew the drill, Elena had rotten taste in
men.
Snow and the Seventh Wolf 5
“Sorry about all this.” He apologized again. “If I had a choice
I’d do it differently, but you know Elena.”
A heavy weight balled inside Snow’s chest. She knew her
stepmother, oh too well. “What does Elena have to do with
this?”
Ron ignored her question, shifted his weight from foot to
foot. “I wouldn’t do it, but I need her. I haven’t had a decent
part in ten years. Once you get older, no one wants a blond
leading-man.”
Even Elena wouldn’t send him here to hit on his stepdaughter.
Would she?
Snow’s stepmother was a narcissistic bitch, she’d treated her
step-daughter terribly. But they only had one month left of each
other’s company then Snow would never see her again. Was this
her sick way of saying goodbye?
“It’s that pre-nup.” Ron pulled a pistol out from his coat
pocket.
Snow’s mouth dropped open.
“She holds all the cards. I walk away with nothing.” He
waved the gun.
“What are you doing Ron?” She needed to think, to plan.
Stuck between the drop-off and a gun, the only place left to run
was straight up the mountain, deeper into the woods.
He lifted the pistol. “Goodbye, Snow.”
The black hole of the barrel sucked her vision in, and she
couldn’t move. Trapped, as the gun wavered up and down, until
it finally leveled it out at her chest.
“I wish there were another way. Sorry babe.”
“Ron!” she finally wheezed out of tension tight lungs.
Ron squeezed his eyes shut.
Snow could make out every line on his face, the slight droop
to the corner of his eye, the trace of whiskers on his cheeks. His
black-gloved finger tightened on the trigger.

Giveaway

In celebration of the release I’ll be giving away an e-copy to one lucky commenter, so leave a comment and let me know what you think about the excerpt, the blurb or the cover.

Oh! And if you’d like to buy a copy it’s available at Passion in Print Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance.

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Filed under Snow and the Seventh Wolf, Thursdays Bite, Werewolves and the Fae

Holiday Gifts of Love Blog Hop

 

Holiday Gifts of Love Blog Hop

Click here for Prizes galore!

The best gift for the holiday’s is love, and luckily since I write romance I get to gift myself and my readers with love, love, love. All my Twisted Tales: Come Into the Woods spicy fairy tales are set in the Rocky Mountains, so it’s love in the Rockies this holiday season, and all year round.

Winter at high altitude is a special time. The snapping cold in your lungs, the scents of spruce, pine, and fir trees, all make it seem like Christmas as soon as you step outside. And inside there’s no better place to be with your sweetie, than curled up in front of a real wood fire, roasting popcorn, drinking hot chocolate, and listening to music to get you in the mood.

Personally I love to bake, so I’m including a special cookie recipe for you to enjoy this holiday season from my favorite cookbook The Hershey’s 1934 Cookbook. My mom had this and we loved to bake from it when I was a little girl. Now I have my own copy and make the same recipes with my girls.

Chocolate Walnut Wheels

  • 2 squares (2 oz.) Hershey’s Unsweetened Baking Chocolatehershey's 1934 cookbook
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour or 2/3 cup cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • Walnut halves

Heat oven to 350° F. Lightly grease cookie sheet. In top of a double boiler over hot, not boiling, water melt chocolate. Set aside to cool slightly. In large mixer bowl, beat butter and sugar until well blended. Add chocolate, egg and vanilla; beat well. Add flour and salt; beat until blended Stir in chopped walnuts. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheet. Place walnut half in center of each. Bake 10-12 minutes or until set. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. yield about 2 dozen cookies.

Warmth, family, cookies and your sweetie to unwrap at the end of the day. That’s the way I would love to set my romantic holidays for my readers and myself. Unfortunately my characters don’t get that in my books. No sweet snuggling, no gifts to unwrap, no kisses under the mistletoe.

Why?

Because they are usually dealing with a crisis.

Now I know none of you have crises during your holidays. Human holidays are relaxed and comfortable, full of turkey, ham and pie. But my werewolves have issues, and they don’t get to be relaxed. Take Red, my werewolf heroine in Little Red Riding Wolf. Now her story takes place in the fall, so by Christmas she should be settled down with her human husband, Evan, working on that baby. But I think this Christmas she’s going to be worried about her brother Seth.

Seth made lots of trouble for Red and Evan in Little Red Riding Wolf, and she knows he’s due for some trouble of his own. And I think she’s right. That’s why Seth will be spending this winter falling in love with his own human, and hating every minute of it. Because Seth doesn’t think humans and weres should mate.

Snow and the Seventh Wolf by Jessica AspenPoor Seth isn’t due for a relaxing winter holiday.

And his love interest has an even tougher holiday in store. You see Snow is living with an evil step-mother, and when her step-mother and step-father propose a vacation in the gorgeous area of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, sweet family holidays are not in store.

Not for Snow, who will be running for her life. Not for her step-father, who fails to kill her the first time. And not for her step-mother, who really needs all the money from Snow’s inheritance, not just the pittance she’s already spent.

So we’ll have to wait to let Seth and Snow enjoy their winter holiday, at least until February. In the meantime, you can curl up in front of the fire with Red’s story. Little Red Riding Wolf is available now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, All Romance and Passion in Print Press.

Click HERE to read an excerpt of Little Red Riding Wolf. Warning, must be over 18, its hot!

Snow and the Seventh Wolf, Seth’s story, will be available February 1st, just in time for a romantic ending around Valentine’s day.

I want all my readers to have happy holidays, and because of that I am giving away an e-copy of Little Red Riding Wolf to one lucky blog-hopper. To enter to win please leave a comment (and your email address) telling me one thing you’ve learned about my twisted tales.

Have fun hopping from blog to blog. Here is the link to the linky list http://carrieannbloghops.blogspot.com/so you can hop to all of the 200+ author’s sites. They have lots of great prizes to win, over 200 giveaways on each blog hosted by that author or blogger,

Little Red Riding Wolf by Jessica Aspen

Little Red Riding Wolf

But that’s not all….

We have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 200 times! So leave a comment here, with your email address and be entered to win an e-copy of Little Red Riding Wolf AND also you’ll be entered in the Grand Prize Drawing! 

Now what are those prizes?

 1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet

2nd Grand Prize: A $200 Amazon or B&N Gift Card

3rd Grand Prize: A Swag Pack that contains paperbacks, ebooks, 50+ bookmarks, cover flats, magnets, pens, coffee cozies, and more!

Happy Holidays!

 (All prizes, with the exception of the swag pack, available internationally)

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Filed under Bloghops, Jessica Aspen's Books, Little Red Riding Wolf, Snow and the Seventh Wolf

Think You Know What Your Book is About? Think Again.

Moonday Madness

a blog for writers by a writer

What is your genre? What sells to your readers? How do you know?

One of the issues facing authors today is that we have the burden of much of the marketing of our product. Since many of us are not marketing majors, this can be a huge handicap. We need to find out who is reading our book and what they think our book is about before marketing it.

Little Red Riding Wolf by Jessica Aspen

Little Red Riding Wolf

For instance, my books are… well… hot. Spicy hot.

If you open Little Red Riding Wolf (on sale at Passion in Print for $3.99), or Snow and the Seventh Wolf you need to be prepared for sex. But does that mean I shouldn’t market it under paranormal? Can I enter it in the paranormal category of the romance contests, or do I need to stick to the erotic? Is it fair to say that the heat level is the most important part of the book?

Well the truth is, it’s not up to me. It’s up to the readers. They are the ones looking for books like mine and if they are looking in erotic and I market it only under paranormal, it’s going to get missed. And vice versa. What if the readers think it’s something else, like chick lit? Are they right?

Or is it that I’ve done a poor job of marketing?This is why you’ll see a big change in my covers. I was able to request a spicer cover for the second book in the Twisted Tales: Come Into the Woods series Not that they didn’t offer spicy for the last one, but that’s another story.

Snow and the Seventh Wolf by Jessica Aspen

Take a look at the cover for Little Red Riding Wolf. Does it say erotic? Nope, I don’t think so. Does it say romance. No, not really. Does it say fairy tale and werewolves. Yes, I think we got that.

Now let’s look at Snow and the Seventh Wolf. Does it say erotic? Yes. Does it say romance? Yes.
Does it say fairytale and werewolves. No, not so much. It’s tough to get it all right.

Luckily my titles help. Little Red Riding Wolf says twisted fairy tale, and I hope Snow and the Seventh Wolf does too.

But how about your books? Do you know what genre they fall into?

This question came up this week as I was communicating with another author. She sees the word paranormal as meaning ghosts. A lot of people do. When I hear paranormal, I think of all kinds of things including psychics, ghosts, and supernatural creatures. But what  do readers think? When someone walks into a bookstore (or into the e-store) how do they know what to search for and how can they find your book. If you’ve tagged it as paranormal, but it’s really horror, will that help your readers find your book?

The key is to first know what others think your book is. Have people read it and let you know. Oh yeah, it’s paranormal romance. or Oh yeah, this is so hot, you’d better market it under erotic. or No, you are better off under the horror label, or women’s fiction, or YA. 

Others see our work much more clearly than we do. They are not bound by our preconceptions of what we intended when we wrote the book. They are more in touch with what readers will see.

Another good way to figure out how to label your book is to find other authors who have similar books. Is your book more like Stephen King? Or more like Sherrilyn Kenyon? Is it romance like Thea Harrison? or is it urban fantasy like Jeanne Stein? Find three authors who are similar to you in the same category and that is likely to be your category. Having trouble with this? Ask your friends who read the book. Use a survey and poll them. They’ll be sure to tell you, friends always do.

Why is any of this important?

You’ve written the book, and it’s either out there on sale, or you are trying to market it to agents and editors. Either way you are selling a product. You need to know who will be interested in that product so you can target your sales efforts. There is no reason or reward in marketing a horror novel to an agent or reader who is only interested in romance. Make sure you have the right audience for your book and the right book for your audience.

And then sell the hell out of it! I expect to see all of you rising stars on the NYT bestseller list any day now. I’m looking for you!

Do you know where your book fits? Does it matter to you? How do you sell it to others if you don’t understand it’s place in the world? What do you do to figure out where it fits?

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Filed under Little Red Riding Wolf, Moonday mania, Snow and the Seventh Wolf, writing organization

Discover the Cover for Snow and the Seventh Wolf

Thursdays Bite

a paranormal blog

It’s darker, it’s racier, it’s here…

Ta-da! It’s my brand new cover for Snow and the Seventh Wolf, my twist of Snow White. Coming out January 2013 from Passion in Print Press!

Snow and the Seventh Wolf by Jessica Aspen

Exiled for attempting to kill his sister’s lover, the last thing Seth needs is to be saddled with a human. But Seth can’t turn his back when he discovers Snow fleeing from her avaricious step-parents murder plot. Isolated in a cabin in the woods, Snow attempts seduction and Seth discovers even werewolves are vulnerable to passion’s temptation. Seth’s angry struggles against his desire drive him away, but his over-protective alpha nature won’t let him abandon a female in distress. With Snow in danger again, can Seth overcome his prejudices in time to save Snow from her step-parents evil plan?

And, just in time for you to catch up, Little Red Riding Wolf, the first book in the series, is on sale for $3.99 at the Passion in Print Webstite.

Fraternizing with humans is taboo, but when feisty werewolf Red runs into hunky new forest ranger Evan Brewster, she jumps on the opportunity to let loose her desires. Evan is stoked when he meets the petite red haired hottie, and combined with his new discovery of wolves in Colorado, thinks his career and life are made. Then Red pushes him away, her hostile brother threatens his life, and things begin to spiral out of control. Caught between her sexy lover and her pack can Red trust Evan with her secrets, or must she sacrifice her human lover and her heart?

Discover Red and Seth and the small town of Radon where werewolves are the norm and nobody is happy when a human drops by.

I’d love to hear your feedback on the cover, and if you’ve read Little Red Riding Wolf are you excited to read Seth’s story?

 

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Filed under Snow and the Seventh Wolf, Thursdays Bite, Werewolves and the Fae, Writer's Journey

Five Necessities for NANOWRIMO

Moonday Mania

a blog about the craft of writing

NANWRIMO

National Novel Writing Month. It’s coming up and this year I am at least signed up. Crazy, I know. I’m working full time for at least three of the weeks in November, and there is a good possibility I’ll have edits for my upcoming novella Snow and the Seventh Wolf, but I’m still going to try. Here are some of the things I’m doing to prep.

1. Informing my family that I will be crazy.

What Should I Be For Halloween?

This is number one on my list. Making sure my husband knows I will not be responsible for any food preparation, laundry, or cleaning of the kitchen counters, once November strikes.

2. Storing up on coffee, chocolate and wine.

I hear that stimulants are the way to go, but since I won’t be shopping I need to be sure the house has coffee, and lots of it. But I’ve also heard that for those late nights, when the brain has turned off, the only thing that really keeps those words flying on the page is wine. So I’m heading to the liquor store. Once again, not shopping during November.

3. This not shopping thing is going to blow my Christmas prep all to hell.

So be it. I will not be the crazy woman at the stores on Black Friday, if I have to have something, I’m sending the husband. Alone. If you’ll be in our area and shopping that day, be prepared for an insane man with a long list and an attitude. I’ll be home with the wine.

4. Did I mention the chocolate?

Chocolate HeartsI think I’ll head to Costco for a bulk package of Nano Chocolate, then I’ll have to hide it somewhere the rest of the family will never think to look. I’m running out of places, but the linen closet might still work. I tried the dryer, that’s no good.

5. Yoga pants

Comfortable clothes are necessary, and since I really shouldn’t answer the door in my penguin flannel PJs I think I’ll shop this month for some super comfy, but fashionable, yoga pants. This way my sister in law will not be sending in crazy pictures to the people on “What Not to Wear”. (And she’d do it too)

That’s it. I’ll be ready this year.

Oh yeah, I’m also plotting my story ahead of time. If you’d like some hints on how I do that check out my post on Snowflaking HERE.

Are you attempting NANO this year? What sort of things do you require to write 50 thousand words in a month? Do you actually think I can do it? Want in on the pool?

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Filed under About the Author, Moonday mania, Snow and the Seventh Wolf, Writer's Journey, writing organization