Tag Archives: werewolves

Werewolves in the Kitchen…Oh My!

Whimsical Wednesdays

guest post

Today on Jessica Aspen Writes, I’m interviewing author, Shauna Aura Knight. Besides having the coolest author name ever, she also has a pretty hot cover and a seriously hot book! You might also be interested in her non-fiction books on dreamwork, rituals, and goddesses. Please welcome, Shauna, to the blog

Hi Shauna and thanks for being my guest today on Jessica Aspen Writes. Let’s get started on the interview, shall we? What do you come up with first in starting a story: Title? Characters? Plot? Setting? Conflict?

I’d say characters and conflict. I often hit right in the middle of the story, particularly when one of my stories comes from an idea from one of my epic dreams.

 

Have you had many rejections? How did you deal with them? How did they push you?

I haven’t had many rejections, but I also waited until I was a really solid writer to submit my work. This is speaking both as a nonfiction and a fiction author. I did recently have a rejection that devastated me at first. However, having a beta reader go through my rejected novel helped me figure out what was wrong with it. In the act of defining the villain more clearly, I not only improved that story, but I came up with the villain/primary conflict for at least three or four other books that I had started, yet I wasn’t sure what the motivation for the villain was. So that rejection ended up being really good for me!

 

Are you self-publishing? Why or why not?

I have self published some of  my nonfiction, and I’m working on a fiction story to self publish. I like working with publishers as it helps to get my work out to a broader audience, and it’s nice to not have to manage all the details. Plus, the experience of having my work edited has tremendously improved my writing. However, I am looking to self publish some fiction just to get a more direct idea of what promotion efforts are working. I do a lot of social media, and I’m never sure what is actually helping to sell my books. I’d like to spend more time writing, and less time promoting, so the only way to do that is to get more strategic about it.

 What’s unique about this particular book.

The book is has some very intensely sexy moments, particularly when all three of them are having sex together…but what really made the characters come alive for me is how funny Jake and Kyle are together. I had no clue when I started writing the story that the two of them would be so clueless about how to seduce Ellie. Writing them made me laugh out loud.

 

Was there anything that surprised you while writing this book?

I was surprised that Jake and Kyle were werewolves. I wrote the scene of the three of them hooking up first. By the time I finished writing that very erotic scene, I knew that they were werewolves. I’ve always been more into vampires, to this was a surprise.

 

Werewolves in the Kitchen by Shauna Aura KnightDid you have a favorite scene?

I do; it’s this hilarious interchange between Jake and Kyle. I don’t even know where it came from, but it still cracks me up when I read it. These two incredibly sexy werewolves are trying to seduce Ellie and completely failing at it.

 

“Was she running away from us?”

 

Jake folded his arms. “You scared her off.”

 

“Me? I’m not the one who was all, ‘Would you like some lemonade?’ No, that didn’t spook her.”

 

“You were about to force feed her pie.”

 

“I was just offering.” Kyle tugged his apron off.

 

“She does run away from us though.” Jake and Kyle headed outside. “Why do we scare her?”

 

“We’ve never gone feral in front of her….”

Is this a series? Will there be any sequels to this book?

I didn’t intend this book as a series when I wrote it, however, I now have three novels I’m working on that all take place at the SpiralStone retreat center where Werewolves takes place. In A Golden Heart of Glass, Angel is a devotee of the goddess Aphrodite, but as she and Benjamin grow closer, they both find themselves sought after by creatures that want their magic. Jake, Kyle, and Ellie make appearances, and I’m also working on a freebie short story about the threesome from Werewolves. Jake and Kyle ambush Ellie with a feast of chocolate…delicious smut ensues.

What are you releasing next, and when?

My next release will be A Fading Amaranth. Alexandra’s psychic abilities have made it impossible for her to be in a relationship until she meets Nathaniel, a vampire who has lost his muse. When a Faerie monster begins stalking the streets of Chicago, they have to face dark magic and danger. I don’t have a release date just yet but it’ll be out soon!

 BOOK BLURB: Werewolves in the Kitchen

When Ellie moved to the SpiralStone retreat center to figure out her life, she expected peace, quiet, and spiritual practice. She had no idea that the two sexy men running the kitchen would seduce her…much less at the same time. Kyle and Jake turn out to be wilder than they seem and Ellie finds herself wrapped up in devastating magic. She must choose: stay with Jake and Kyle and risk who she has been, accepting the dangerous world of shapeshifters? Or leave them and risk madness, or worse?

 

Excerpt on my Blog: http://shaunaknightauthorartist.wordpress.com/2014/01/17/book-release-werewolves-in-the-kitchen/

 

To buy Werewolves in the Kitchen:

Jupiter Gardens Press: http://jupitergardenspress.com/shop/werewolves-in-the-kitchen

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Werewolves-Kitchen-Shauna-Aura-Knight-ebook/dp/B00HVJMUSI

B&N:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/werewolves-in-the-kitchen-shauna-aura-knight/1118063246

ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-werewolvesinthekitchen-1396618-340.html

 Werewolves in the Kitchen is a paranormal romance with a M/F/M ménage.

ISBN:  #978-1-938257-65-0

 shauna aura knight, authorBIO: Shauna Aura Knight

An artist, author, and presenter, Shauna’s work is inspired by the mythic stories of heroes and magic, and of the darkness we each must overcome. She’s a fantasy artist and author of paranormal romance and urban fantasy including Werewolves in the Kitchen, A Winter Knight’s Vigil, and The White Dress, the Autumn Leaves. Her mythic artwork and designs are used for magazine covers, book covers, and illustrations.She travels nationally offering intensive education in the transformative arts of community leadership, facilitation, and personal transformation, and is the author of numerous articles and books on those subjects.

 

CONTACT INFO:

Author Web Site: http://www.shaunaauraknight.com

Fiction Blog: https://shaunaknightauthorartist.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ShaunaKnightAuthorArtist

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Shauna_A_Knight

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/author/shaunaaknight

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Filed under guest post, Whimsical Wednesdays, Writer's Journey

Goldi and the Bear Release Day Bewitching Blog Tour and Book Giveaway

goldi and the bear release day blitz

It’s Here!

Today is the day that my spicy new adult twisted fairy tale Goldi and the Bear is on tour with Bewitching Tours. You can discover new blogs and fantastic reviewers at the same time as you can win a free e-copy of Goldi and the Bear! I’ve offered to give away an e-copy of the book at each stop, you’ll have to check and see which bloggers took me up on the offer. And just for fun I’m going to giveaway a few extra copies. Anyone stops at all sixteen stops and leaves a comment on each one can also be eligible to win a free copy here. Just come back here and let me know you made it to all  sixteen stops and left a comment, and I’ll enter you to win!

1. The Official Blog of A.C. James
2. Green Mountain Couple
3. BookwormBridgette’s World
4. Victoria’s Gossip
5. Interview
6. Faerie Tale Books
7. Fandom Fanatic
8. Words of Wisdom from The Scarf Princess
9. Kelly Powell
10. Escape Into A Book
11. Readaholic’s Reviews
12. Eclipse Reviews
13. Author Karen Swart
14. Pembroke Sinclair.
15. A Bibliophiles Thoughts on Books
16. Literal Hotties Naughty Book Reviews

And of course, if you would like to purchase Goldi and the Bear today it is available at Passion in Print Press, and should be available soon at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance. I’ll be sending out a release blast on my new release newsletter as soon as it’s out, so if you want the scoop sign up HERE. No spam, no selling addys, no problems, just real news about new releases and specials.

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Filed under fairy tales, Goldi and the Bear, Moonday mania, New Adult, Werewolves and the Fae

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

Shifters, Werewolves, or Lycans? Oh My!

Thursdays Bite

a paranormal blog

Business First! I’m on a Bewitching Tour all week. Click HERE for the full schedule. Below I’ve posted the schedule for the next two days!

January 17 I have a guest post at Little Read Riding Hood http://littlereadridinghood.com

And an interview at JeanzBookReadNReview http://jeanzbookreadnreview.blogspot.co.uk/

Then on January 18 you can find me at Rabid Reads –www.rabidreads.ca

as well as Delirious About Books http://deliriousaboutbooks.blogspot.com

Hope you swing on by and say “HI” and enter to win a free copy of Little Red Riding Wolf at every stop. There is almost no excuse for not having read it now!

On to the blog:

Little Red Riding Wolf takes place in the small town of Radon, Colorado. A place where everyone is a werewolf. Now I know that recently there has been some argument that werewolves are the scary ugly half man half wolf creatures from the old horror movies, but I didn’t go with that. I went with the more mystical person changing into a full wolf. Some people call those shifters. For some, a shifter can shift into any type of animal. For instance in Charlaine Harris‘s Sookie Stackhouse Series she uses shifters as a separate species from werewolves and yet her werewolves are actually wolves.

Then there is the term lycan made famous in the action horror films The Underworld series. Lycan is derived from the term lycanthrope, another name for the werewolf. In the Underworld the lycan’s are half man half wolf and face off against the vampires. I didn’t want to make my characters that dark. I love the idea of transforming into a wolf and running wild under the night, not being a twisted contorted concoction of man and beast. My wolves are beautiful and they know it.

Underworld Movie Trailer

As I said, Radon is populated entirely with werewolves. Poor Evan Brewster is assigned there when his predecessor is killed unexpectedly. Typically, the Radon Pack Council would have made sure there was a replacement ready to step into the empty Forest Ranger position, but with the “unexpectedly” part, no one was ready and Evan shows up. Needless to say, the folks in Radon are less than welcoming. Small towns are tough enough places when you are an outsider, you can imagine what it would be like to be an outsider in a town of werewolves all trying to keep their existence secret.

From the cold reception at the gas station to getting shot at, Evan does not have it easy. The only bright spot in his world is when Red  shows up unexpectedly while he’s on patrol in the middle of the woods. Evan is young and lonely and the sassy sexy single gal who can out-hike him is more enticing than anything in town. No wonder he chases her up the mountain and confronts her in her Grandma’s cabin.

little red riding wolf tour buttonI’ve made my mind up for this series, but there are always more on the way and brand new series give me more leeway to play with words, terms, and phrases. I’d love to know if you prefer the term shifter or werewolf or lycan, leave a comment and let me know your preference.

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Filed under Little Red Riding Wolf, Thursdays Bite, Werewolves and the Fae

Werewolf Inspiration

Thursday’s Bite

a paranormal blog

Today I’m on Redz World exploring the ways to burn the last days of summer. Drop by today and leave a comment to enter to win a copy of Little Red Riding Wolf.

So today, while my blog is over on Redz World, I thought I’d share Werewolves of London by the late Warren Zevon. Enjoy!  And after your finished, download the song for your ipod. It’s a classic!

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Filed under Bloghops, Little Red Riding Wolf, Werewolves and the Fae

Something You Don’t Know about Little Red Riding Wolf

Thursdays Bite

a paranormal blog

From living with wolves and breeding what we now call “man’s best friend”, humans have gone all the way to almost exterminating what was once the most predominant predator on the planet.

My novella, Little Red Riding Wolf, tells the story of a werewolf pack that lives in the Colorado Rockies. What many of you may not be aware of it that there are no official wolves in Colorado, they were hunted out many years ago by ranchers and settlers. In fact the wolves we have in the US Rockies now were re-introduced from Canada in a controversial re-population program that has been fought tooth and nail by ranchers across the west.

Now there is evidence to support that introducing wolves into areas such as Yellowstone has had postitive repercussions by lowering the number of wild elk and increasing the number of Aspen trees. With a name like Jessica Aspen, how could I resist the temptation of the wolves?

The  Were pack in my fictional town of Radon, Colorado has survived by their isolationist practices as well as controlling any outside jobs, such as Colorado Park Ranger positions.  When that system fouls up and a stranger becomes the local forest ranger, everything is threatened. It’s no wonder that my ranger, Evan Brewster, finds the small town to be not just unwelcoming, but hostile.

But to Red he’s everything a small town girl shouldn’t want. A hot sexy stranger who will take her mind off of her small town woes. She just plans only on indulging her lust, not on falling in love.

Meanwhile Evan is seeing signs of wolves in a state where there shouldn’t be wolves. This is a career changing moment for the young biologist ranger. And a tipping point for Red’s brother Seth, who knows that Evan is a threat who must be eliminated.

To find out more about wolves or if you would like more information on wolves and wolf re-introduction here are some links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolf_reintroduction

http://howlcolorado.org/

http://www.denverpost.com/perspective/ci_14385321

http://www.defenders.org/wildlife_and_habitat/wildlife/wolf,_gray.php

And don’t forget to enter my Little Red Riding Wolf contest HERE . There are lots of prizes including wolf t-shirts and shopping bags.
F
For some lovely wolf pictures and howls you can play this video I discovered on YouTube

Uploaded by on Oct 1, 2008
DISCLAIMER: I DON’T OWN ANY OF THE PICTURES, THEY ARE FROM PHOTOBUCKET!! I DON’T OWN THE MUSIC IT IS FROM THE ‘Legend of the Wolf’ CD!!!

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Filed under Thursdays Bite, Werewolves and the Fae

Ask the Author Free for All!

Thursday’s Bite

a paranormal blog

I’ve been answering interview questions for several blogs as I set up my blog tour. This week I’d love to answer questions about the paranormal, paranormal romance, and my paranormal in particular. I’m opening it up to you. What do you want to know? I’ll get you started with a few and then I want you to go for it!

1. What kind of paranormal stories do you write and why?

Well Jessica, my debut novella Little Red Riding Wolf is not just a twisted fairy tale, but it is also a werewolf story. The heroine is the werewolf and the hero takes on the modern role of the huntsman in the form of a forest ranger. I have several twisted fairy tales and I like them because they provide a familiar framework from which to hang the story. Very little of my stories remain traditional, but just enough hints come in to remind you of the original tale.

2. I can see why you chose to twist Little Red Riding Hood with werewolves, but what would you do with a different fairy tale, one that doesn’t have an obvious wolf motif?

In my story The Queen’s Huntsman, based on Snow White, there were no werewolves at all. I did add elves and witches and a complex world to support the longer story. And you’ll still find an apple or two as well as plenty of magic.

3. Do you plan on more stories like Little Red Riding Wolf?

I’m working on a second twisted tale set in the Colorado, Rockies. I love the town of Radon and now that I have it set up it’s easy to see how other werewolves could have their own fairy tales. Another Snow White or Cinderella would be easy to do. Whatever the final story ends up being I can tell you for sure, it will be set in Colorado and it will have shapeshifters.

Okay, I’m opening it up. Leave a comment and I’ll keep answering questions!

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Filed under About the Author, paranormal inspiration, Thursdays Bite

The Blog Tour Cometh

Sensational Saturdays

a blog for whatever the bleep I feel like writing

It’s coming. I can feel it getting closer day by day.

The blog tour for Little Red Riding Wolf approaches.

I haven’t set up many stops yet, but even the thought of setting them up gets my mind spinning. Where should I go? Who should I contact? How do you do this? Little Red Riding Wolf is paranormal, so I need to do something on paranormal blogs, but should I do other kinds as well? Of course I’m going to start with my friends. Some of them have already kindly offered and been accepted with great relief. I have a place to go where I am welcome.

Who knew this almost anonymous action of blogging would feel so personal? I don’t have to pick up the phone and call anyone, listen to their hemming and hawing while they pretend to check their calendars. I don’t have to knock on doors, or face no-soliciting signs. But somehow even with the apparent facelessness of the internet, it feels intimate.

My internet friends are friends. Even if I’ve never met them. Despite the fact that I’ve never met them. They are my friends. This thought dawned on me as I watched Elaine Cougler interview Sharon Clare at her blog (On Becoming a Wordsmith). As they smiled and chatted and talked to the camera, I almost recognized their reactions, their tones, their quirks.

Why? Because we’ve been getting to know each other through the internet. And for centuries that’s how friendships have grown. No, I know the internet is new, but writing letters, revealing yourself through words, that is centuries old. Many people who considered themselves friends never met through anything other than letters. They would strike up a correspondence as strangers, but through common experiences or goals or interests they would become friends.

Meeting friends through the internet isn’t as deep as writing a personal letter. You know everyone is reading your correspondence, and it is composed of one or two liners. That’s why Twitter is so successful. It turns out that one or two lines can express your personality, outline your goals, or sink your ship as well as entire letters. Okay, maybe not as well. But think of taking the time to write a letter over a week, or even a month. Filling the pages with one or two lines at a time. Lines that might be full of deep thought, or lines that are quick in-between glimpses into your daily life. Then its all saved up and mailed at one time. It’s still small bursts of intimacy.

I believe we were losing the art of correspondance due to the telephone. No one wrote letters, at least not very often. Maybe cards during the holidays, or maybe not. When the computer and printer came around most of my friends settled on a group letter. Sure it let you know what every single person in the family had accomplished over the year, but it was generic and didn’t feel very personal. Now with Facebook, I can see my friends and their kids as their lives evolve during the year.

Yes, our lives are busy. Yes, we don’t have time for more than scanning and sending out a quick tweet. Yes it might feel like this isn’t what a close one-on-one cup of coffee would be like. But I feel the friendship. I feel that I am getting to know each and every one of you who comments. The pithy one liners, the carefully constructed words, the love and support.

Its all real, and I appreciate it all. And BTW: if you haven’t heard from me, I’ll be knocking on your door soon. Asking for a place to hang my hat for the day. In the old paper writing days one would write a letter of introduction, asking for an interview. Now I’ll be writing a letter of inquiry and sending it by email. Not so very different. Words, whether electronic or on paper, do promote intimacy. Thank you everyone for the friendship.

And in that spirit I will burden you with a last vegan recipe. This one is culled from a pot-luck dish and can be served to anyone as a side dish. (Just don’t tell them it’s healthy) And it can form a satisfying main meal if you will be having any vegetarians or vegans as guests. I like to make a big batch and freeze it in small containers for lunches.

Savory Lentils and Rice

  • 1 med onion, chopped fine
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed or minced
  • 1 Tbl olive oil
  • 3/4 cup brown rice
  • 3/4 cup lentils (I like the color of red lentils, but green works just fine)
  • 3 cups water* mixed with 1 Tbl Better Than Bouillon Vegetable Broth
  • 1/2 tsp each Tarragon, Thyme, and Marjoram
  • 1 cup greens, chopped into small pieces, I like turnip or kale

Pre-heat oven to 350° . Sauté onions and garlic in oil over med-low heat till soft. Combine with the rest of the ingredients in a casserole dish and bake covered for 1/2 hour, then stir and uncover, another 1/2 – 1 hour.

*I am at high altitude and need to use 4 cups of water and a longer cooking time, total 2 hours. Also if you use short or long grain brown rice, that can change your cooking time. Short grain cooks faster. This dish can be made ahead of time and re-heated. It is very accommodating.

Enjoy!

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Filed under Sensational Saturday's, Veganista? Or Veganish?, Writer's Journey

What in the BLEEEP Do I Write?

Thursdays Bite (on Friday)

a paranormal blog

Due to the added post on Tuesday for the first challenger of the Third Writers Platform-Building Campaign (click HERE for post) Thursday’s Bite has been delayed till today (Friday). Thanks for your understanding!

I say I write paranormal fiction, but is that exactly true? After reading Is it Paranormal, Supernatural, or Preternatural? by author Elijana Kindel on Paranormal Freebies I began to wonder. I write twisted Fairy Tales, like Little Red Riding Wolf and The Queen’s Huntsman. I also am currently writing a darker non fairytale linked series of werewolf stories. Do these qualify as paranormal by Elijana’s definitions.

PARANORMAL…that which lies outside the range of normal experience or scientific experience.

SUPERNATURAL… anything above or beyond what one holds to be natural or exists outside natural law and the observable universe.

PRETERNATURAL…that which is outside or beyond the natural and is believed to have a rational explanation for its occurrence.

Are werewolves and elves and witches outside the range of normal experience. I’d have to say yes. Are they outside natural law? I asked Elijana about werewolves and vampires and here is what she said:

“Weres and Vamps would actually fall into the Preternatural camp. Because they’ve got a finite range of abilities and they have (if the paranormal world is built correctly) a rational explanation for their existence. It might be genetic–or magical–or whatever, but there is a reason why they exist.”

So why do we call it “paranormal” fiction when it is really about preternatural creatures?

Here is my view:

It’s because of the universe. If you use our basic universe and our basic rules, stay on our planet and stay (mostly) in our time period. We label it paranormal, because it is within our normal range of experience.

If you go to other worlds without reference to our modern normal world, its fantasy. And if you go to other planets and too much in the future, it’s science fiction and you need to have reasonable solid science (okay, not perfect science, but believable within the worldbuilding).

So when is it urban fantasy?

Here is Wikipedia‘s definition:

Urban fantasy is a sub-genre of fantasy defined by place; the fantastic narrative has an urban setting. Many urban fantasies are set in contemporary times and contain supernatural elements. However, the stories can take place in historical, modern, or futuristic periods. The prerequisite is that they must be primarily set in a city.[1]

Doesn’t that sound like paranormal? When I looked at Wikipedia’s definition of paranormal fiction it sounded like it included urban fantasy, not that they were separate and distinct genres.

Which leads me to believe that even though my twisted fairy tales have werewolves in a modern setting, as do my newer WIP’s, and even though I write about elves and witches and magic. I can cover it all by calling myself a paranormal romance author.

What is your view? Do you have a distinct idea of what paranormal is versus urban fantasy? Do you only read one or the other or do you read a wide eclectic variety like me?

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Filed under roots of paranormal romance, Thursdays Bite, Werewolves and the Fae

Paranormals: Modern Day Cautionary Tales

Thursdays Bite

A Paranormal Themed Blog

The roots of paranormal stretch deep, far past the gothics of the sixties, past the rise of horror and mystery in the Victorian age all the way to our oldest tales. The ones we know think of as sweet, innocent and only for children. Well, mostly for children. For a long time authors of all genre’s have been twisting the old fairy tales into new dark tales. But the originals were created just as dark, sometimes even horrifying.

I love twisted fairy tales, and have for many years so when I looked for inspiration a few years ago, that is right where I went. The result’s are Little Red Riding Wolf and my novel, The Queen’s Huntsman.

Little Red Riding Wolf, my sensual novella, received an Honorable Mention in Passionate Ink’s Stroke of Midnight contest. Little Red is loosely based on an old French fairy tale called (amazingly enough) Little Red Riding Hood. You may have read it. But you might not have read the original written by a famous French author named Charles Perrault (12 January 1628 – 16 May 1703). Not as famous as the Grimm brothers he is the author of not only Little Red Riding Hood, but romance’s greatest fairy tale, Cinderella. Unlike sweet Cinderella though, Little Red is a dark tale that Perrault ends with a sinister message.

Fairy tales were the original tales of horror in a time when most people couldn’t read and the only book available in many places was a bible written in Latin. Around the fire stories were told to entertain and to warn children of dark places and dangerous  people. As we know they’ve been watered down over the centuries and likely changed many times to suit the culture. Perrault’s story is a cautionary tale warning little girls not to trust strangers and ends with a lightly veiled warning about pedophiles.

These stories form the roots of romance and horror. Cinderella swept off her feet and out of poverty is first tortured by her evil step-mother and step-sisters. Snow White, sent off to be murdered by her step-mother, only avoids death by the tender feelings of the huntsman, but does he save her? No. He sends her off into the deep dark woods alone. These are the lighter fairy tales, the darker ones (like the Red Shoes) are rooted in death and madness.

Just as in the old world when fairy tales married fantasy and horror, paranormal is the marriage of magic and our modern world. Men live down the street and look normal, but turn into ravaging beasts at the full moon. Evil witch step-mothers from the past morph into modern day  witches and vampires who fight in city streets in a struggle for survival. Are we sending our own warnings?

Are paranormal stories tales of romance or warnings of where you might go if you stray into the dark? We live in one of the safest times in modern history. We don’t need to worry about walking down city streets, or do we? When we live in a time when women are expected to live alone in city apartments and need to get to work, to parties, to the grocery store on their own, are we to tell them its not safe? No, if we do that, no woman would walk alone and our world wouldn’t be the same. Instead we, just like our predecessors, tell our tales. We set up scary situations, thny warn under their happy endings, it’s not safe. Things lurk in the dark.

In paranormal we disguise our murderers as viscous vampires and wild wolves. We create heroes from fear and strong women to take them on. We may not be aware of our role as our society’s warning system, we may only think we are telling stories. But in truth we join a long tradition of using story telling to mask the truth, to sugar coat the threat. But we still do what our ancestors did for thousands of years, sending messages of caution to our readers. Beware the dark stranger. Lock your doors. Don’t venture out at night. Or the bogeyman might eat you.

Like this blog? Have some ideas for me? Leave a comment and let me know.

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Filed under fairy tales, paranormal inspiration, roots of paranormal romance