Dariel's World

Hi. I'm Dariel Raye, an interracial/multi-cultural paranormal romance, urban fantasy, and psy/suspense author, and every day of this journey is a learning experience. I'm also a counselor, musician, and animal lover. My stories are about all-conquering love and romance, and I enjoy hosting other authors as well. Enter a world where werewolves, vampires, multi-shifters, vamp-like Nephilim, Vodouin Fey, and all things paranormal capture our hearts...

You might also like to visit my website.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Fridays with Friends Featured Guest is Paranormal & Erotic Romance Author Zenobia Renquist/D. Renee Bagby!

Today, I'm honored to have multi-published author, Zenobia Renquist as my featured guest! We first met during the MSN group days, and in case you didn't see my brief post about Zenobia on yesterday at my Word Press site, http://www.darkparanormalromanceseries.com, you can also find her at Color of Love, where she's one of my sister administrative authors.

It is such a pleasure to have you here today, Zenobia! You write such a delicious variety of romance, I wanted to at least place a few tidbits around your interview for readers to get a taste. Readers, you can also find some of Zenobia's great stories under the name D. Renee Bagby. Following the interview, you'll find a special site to read first chapters of Zenobia's books.

Interview Questions
1.    What do you want readers to know about you as a person?  3 things.
a.     I tend to make things more convoluted than they need to be. As a result, it takes me a while to finish my novels. My novellas, on the other hand, go pretty quick because they have to be short.
b.    I love dragons with a capital L. Most anything with a dragon on it gets my attention. I have tons of dragons surrounding me in my office.
c.     I’m a home body. I prefer staying at home. I don’t mind traveling but my preference is to stay cooped up in my office.
2.    What are some of the most valuable lessons you’ve learned during your career as a writer/author?
a.     The most valuable lesson I have learned is that there will always be more to learn. This career is learning from start to finish. There’s always something new to learn—be it for writing craft or promotion or how to tell a story.
3.    That is so true. You’re a very busy lady. How do you spend your time when you’re not writing?
a.     I watch anime or read manga. I love Japanese culture. Both my anime and manga collections are substantial and getting bigger every month.
4.    Tell us about your books – genre, titles. Any favorite characters?
a.     My newest release is an Erotic Fiction title from Razor’s Edge Press called PRE-GAME SHOW. It’s a contemporary, voyeurism/exhibitionism short story about a wife who likes to entertain her husband’s poker buddies before they play cards.
b.    Last month GUARDIAN’S TALES 1: ON AWHIM (Erotic Fantasy Romance) was released at Changeling Press. This is the tale of Rosaline, a human who has made the grave error of falling in love with a demi-god. This story also starts off a new series that focuses on Guardian, a demi-goddess who loves playing matchmaker.
c.     In August is ETERNAL LOVERS thefinale for my CAVEAT EMPTOR SERIES (Erotic Paranormal Romance from Changeling Press). This series has followed three couples as they struggle to make love work during the vampire-mage war. Until now, all of the books have been from the heroines’ points of view. The finale gives the heroes a chance to shine.
d.    I would have to say my favorite character is always the one I’m working on now. I have to love my characters in order to write them. Of my published titles my current favorite is Starling Moddel from PET’S PLEASURE (Mainstream SciFi Romance from Ellora’s Cave Blush). I had a ball writing her and reading aloud her arguments with Bekion. I loved the way those two bounced off of each other.
5.    Is there a common thread in your books? If so, what do they have in common? What do you want readers to take from your creations?
a.     My common thread is Beauty and the Beast. It’s my all time favorite fairytale and my favorite Disney film. I love the idea of love breaking through a gruff exterior. My books tend to follow the same theme. I don’t know if readers can take anything from that other than I like my heroes to be a little annoying until the heroine gets to know them better.
6.    What can we look forward to from you in the near future? Works in progress? Projects?
a.     I have so many irons in the fire that I’m planning to go into seclusion in July. I’ll poke my head on the internet every now and again but I mostly plan to write and get stuff finished. I have four more books in the GUARDIAN’S TALES series to write as well as a spin-off from the CAVEAT EMPTOR series and then there’s a series that I haven’t even started yet. That’s not to mention the five SciFi Romances I have planned for Ellora’s Cave.
7.    What are some of your favorite writers’ resources? Online sites? Resource books?
a.     I recently discovered SIN AND SYNTAX by Constance Hale thanks to Angela Knight. It’s a resource book about “how to craft wickedly effective prose.” As I already said, this career is one of perpetual learning. I also subscribed to the CHICAGO MANUAL OF STYLE website since most publishers use that as their style guide. Beyond books, I’ve found RWA and its chapters to be full of authors willing to share their knowledge.
8.    What, in your opinion, are some key elements necessary in finding the love of your life? (I know. This one’s deep ;-)
a.     Number One – Similar interests. The love of your life should also be your friend. You’re going to be with this person for the rest of your life (ideally) and you can’t have sex all the time (though some try at first). You have to have something you can do and talk about together in between bedroom romps.
b.    Number Two – Different interests. You can’t be with each other 24/7. Eventually one will get on the other’s nerves. Sometimes people need time to themselves or with others who share an interest their spouse might not have.
c.     Number Three – Realize that life isn’t like a book or the movies. It’s great to get wrapped up in fiction, but real life doesn’t happen like that. Love takes work and diligence. As quickly as some people fall IN love, they can fall OUT of love if they aren’t careful.
9.    What do you look for in a good book?
a.     Characters I can love and a plot that grabs me. I want to laugh and cry and yell with the characters. I need to feel what they feel. And the plot has to have me reading as fast I can to find out what happens next. My favorite books are the ones that make me skip meals and ignore the real world until I finish them.

For more information about Zenobia, you can find her in these places around the web:
Blog - http://dreneebagby.blogspot.com/
Twitter - http://www.twitter.com/ZenobiaRenquist
Newsletter - http://ymlp.com/xgeusujygmgj

Readers can preview the first chapter of all of my books on my First Chapters blog:

Friday, June 22, 2012

Fridays with Friends - Marketing Maven Lynnette Phillips is Gracing My Blog!

I am thrilled to have the very knowledgeable (and very busy)marketing and publicity maven, Lynnette Phillips visiting with me today!
Lynnette, I have been following your work for some time now, and you have a number of helpful hints, aids, and books for writers, particularly indie / self pub authors. It's a pleasure to have this opportunity to talk with you.

1. What do you want readers to know about you as a person? 3 things

I love books, I love to learn, and I love to share what I learn J

2. We have that in common. The more you do, the better you have to be at facing and overcoming disappointment. What picks you up when you are down or discouraged? What moves you?

Great fiction (no erotica & seldom romance), fantastic music (most genres) and other people’s smiles!

3. Tell us about your books. Genre, releases

As fiction writers know, a good story is hard to get from your mind to the paper without the tale losing something so I’ve put fiction writing on the back-burner and turned to writing non‑fiction.

Lately my works have leaned toward book marketing and promotion with my most recent titles being “QR Codes: Bridging The Marketing Gap”, “Fight Back! Don’t Let Twitter and Facebook Take Over (Your Life)” and “Offline Book Marketing: Where To Start When You Turn The Computer Off”.

4. What can we look forward to from you in the near future? Upcoming books, projects?

This week I’m one of the 20 experts speaking at D’vorah Lansky’s virtual Digital Publishing Summit and I am recording a couple of Internet radio interviews. Plans are being firmed up for an educational teleseminar also.

As far as the next book goes, I haven’t cut down the subject options and ideas yet. I have listed quite a few topics but I’ve also been thinking about updating, expanding and maybe combining some of my older publications.

5. Yes, that's something I've gotta get better at - repurposing. You have a prominent online presence. Tell us about some of your projects & programs. What are some of your favorite social media, marketing, publicity, & promo aids?

I found my niche when I discovered self-published and Indie authors. There are some real gems waiting to be discovered in the literary world but the biggest thing for most authors is getting their work seen and noticed. That’s where I can help.

My favorite programs and techniques change constantly so basically I don’t try to restrain myself by staying with the same ol’ same ol’. Also each book or author requires something unique.

For example, Twitter has shown some fantastic results and has some incredible tools and options available but it’s not right for everyone.

The most important requirements about social media are versatility, consistency and time-management.

For book marketing in general I prefer to keep certain ideals in mind:

·        Authors need to be involved and interactive.

·        Publicity = free (or very affordable) visibility. Exposure, visibility and consistency = book sales.

·        Marketing and publicity are not one-size-fits-all.

·        Your only limit is creativity.

6. Most of us can use some help with that. In fact, that's how I started following you - researching publicity and marketing - ways to climb out of that writing bubble without spending all my time online. You are a very busy lady. What time management & organizational tips can you share?

Time management and organization is so difficult. My first rule here is flexibility. Stuff happens and it rarely happens when it’s convenient, like a flat tire during rush hour, for instance.

For the things that can be scheduled I depend, first of all, on daily and long term ‘To-Do’ and priority lists. These have to be constantly revised.

Setting goals and making plans helps. This is where formal schedules and strategies come in handy; think content strategy/calendar for blog posts, 90 day marketing plans/event calendars, you get the picture.

Two of the biggest time gobblers are social media and email. I’ve found here that the biggest helpers are obstinacy and commitment. For social media time-saving tips check out FightBack! Don’t Let Twitter and Facebook Take Over (Your Life)”

Email is a little more difficult – remember, be stubborn – check for things that require an immediate response then close the program. No matter how tempting it gets, don’t go back until you have your priorities taken care of.

7. Yes, I downloaded that one and your Fiverr.com for Writers. Very informative. What common threads do your books share? What message (s) do you want readers to come away with? What do you look for in a good book?

The common threads are always some form of marketing or promotion.

I try to get the message across to authors and writers that 1) writing and getting your book published is only 10-20% of the job, 2) to be a commercial success you have to be involved, interactive and persistent in the marketing phase and 3) marketing and publicity does not have to be work-intensive and can even be enjoyable.

A good non-fiction book needs to be informative and teach us something. I also look for a simple and easy to follow format and concise doesn’t hurt either.

8. Words of wisdom for beginning or experienced writers?

Don’t throw obstacles up for yourself. Go over, under around or through them but don’t let them stop you.

If you find yourself coming up with reasons why you can’t do something – like finish that new novel, reverse your thinking. Ask yourself instead, how CAN I do this and then keep going.

Lynnette, this has been a pleasure. Thank you so much for taking time from your busy schedule to share with us! Wishing you continued success, and of course, I'll be talking to you online :-)
To learn more about Lynnette, here are just a few places you can find her around the web:

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Book Talk Wednesday

Welcome back to Book Talk Wednesday! Today's featured authors are (as always, alphabetically) Melisse Aires, Rachelle Ayala, Dianna Bellerose, and Mia Darien. There's also an additional treat today - I've provided links to additional information about Mia Darien: a review (by yours truly) of book 2 from the Adelheid series, and an interview by another featured guest (Rachelle Ayala). Please check those out as well. Happy reading ;-D

Melisse Aires

Sabralia lives a lonely but luxurious life in Emperor Sirn’s Harem, her only companion is her obedient servant, Qy, a cyborg. Her life has largely been controlled by others, but when Sirn demands his Harem pleasure his Commanding Officers at a victory celebration, Sabralia makes a daring plan to hide to avoid rape by Sirn's men.

The Palace is ambushed and her cyborg gets her off world. The impossible has happened−Qy the gentle cyborg becomes the man he once was, the warrior Kaistril. Pursued for valuable information, Sabralia is thrust into dangerous, unfamiliar situations where she must stand up to the challenges, or lose the man she loves. Sensual Sci-fi Romance Novella


Rachelle Ayala

In ancient Israel, where women are property, Princess Michal loves her father's worst enemy, the future King David. She sacrifices everything to save his life, but will her heart survive war and separation?
A novel of betrayal, forbidden love, and redemption, Michal's Window is an imaginative retelling of King David's story through the eyes of the woman who loved him first.
Michal's Window is a story of one woman's journey through love and heartache to self-realization. As one reviewer said, "So, once I let the modern feminist inside of me relax, I realized how timely her story is, because, sadly, many of the things she has to deal with are things that women still face today.

http://www.rachelleayala.com/2012/03/guest-mia-darien-hears-voices.html - Rachelle's Interview with Mia Darien

Dianna Bellerose

In Fire and Ice,Nancy, a naïve but resourceful, kindhearted woman, marries her high school sweetheart. As a working wife and mother, Nancy perseveres, despite having an abusive, alcoholic husband.


Mia Darien

Cameron's Law Cover Art Cameron’s Law, Adelheid 1 - Paranormal Suspense
[Smashwords] [Lulu - Print] [Amazon] [Barnes & Noble]
Vampires are people, too. Cameron’s Law says so. Vampire and public face Sadie Stanton called Adelheid, CT home and it attracts a lot of attention. It attracts a lot more when vampires start attacking werewolves without provocation. Can Sadie keep the community from descending into chaos and war before it brings all of to harm? And can she do it when she herself gets thrust into the spotlight?

When Forever Died Cover Art When Forever Died, Adelheid 2 – Paranormal Suspense
[Smashwords] [Lulu - Print] [Amazon] [Barnes & Noble]
[Sample Chapter, Chapter One]
Forever is a long time. Even longer when a harrowing past won’t let you be. For bounty hunter Dakota, it’s the past she can’t escape when she has to hunt an ex-lover. And when she takes on a second case after a thousand year old vampire and finds even more ties to her past, can she keep her carefully constructed solitude intact or will her hard-earned survival finally be tested beyond endurance?

http://darkparanormalromanceseries.com/2012/06/17/review-of-mia-dariens-when-forever-died-2/ - Review

Monday, June 18, 2012

Inspiring Blog Award

I’m honored to be nominated for the “Inspiring Blog Award!” We often wonder if anyone’s listening – well, reading, so this is encouraging. Thanks for nominating me, Katie Jennings. The first thing nominees are asked to do is tell everyone seven things about ourselves, then nominate 15 blogs for the same award, so here goes…

Seven Things About Me

1.      Until about a year ago, I had three big house dogs – a broadhead Lab, a Dobie/Coonhound mix, and a Rott mix.

2.      My two girls, the Lab and the Rott, both passed from complications of Hip Dysplasia.

3.      I don’t cry often, but I still cry sometimes because I couldn’t save them.

4.      I believe in the healing power of comfort foods and touch.

5.      I’m the sexiest dialysis patient I know (really. Everybody says).

6.      I’m a very happy, spiritual person.

7.      I love, and have always loved frappe :-D

Fifteen Inspiring Blogs & their most recent posts


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