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.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Things We Love: Dariel's New Year Reunion Pre-Event

The New Year Reunion starts tomorrow, so I asked each participating author to tell us “three things they love besides family, reading, or writing. Inquiring minds want to know.” Even answered my own question at the end, so this is what I want you to do: Beneath each author’s name and response is an author page link. After you take a look at the link, post a comment here with your email address and let me know whether you could have guessed (judging by our books) what some of the authors love in addition to family, reading, and writing (be nice). Two (2) lucky commenters will receive an ebook of choice from booklists on the author pages below J

Doris O’Connor - Argh, not fair, lol! I always say those because they're the most important things in my world. Okay, hmmm looooooooong baths.
The evening walks with the dog, because it's just hubby and I, and we treasure those times with our hectic schedules and our big brood.
The TV Show Strictly Come Dancing. I just love it and I never miss an episode.

L.J. Kentowski - Besides family, reading, and writing, I guess I'd have to pick running & yoga, watching movies & primetime TV, and Snicker bars. In the last year I participated in my first ever 5K runs and obstacle course races. They were such great milestones for me, and I fell in love with the running and yoga to get me trained for them. Watching movies and primetime TV is a given for me — they're books on TV! And Snicker bars? That's pretty self-explanatory isn't it? They're just so SATISFYING!

P.T. Macias - My favorite, absolutely favorite three things I love are sinfully delicious.
I love to go on a cruise.
I love to wear my boots and jewelry.
I love to eat strawberries and whip cream.

Chantel Rhondeau - I absolutely love to go bowling. I’m on two leagues this year and often go with my family too. Also, playing Pinochle (even if I often lose) is always fun. I’m a huge animal lover and we have four cats. Before starting my family and plans changing, I wanted to be a small animal veterinarian.

Tricia Schneider - I love to travel! Two places I fell in love with are New Orleans, Louisiana and Bamberg, Germany. So much beauty and history there, I want to go back!
I love to do crafty things. I do cross-stitch and I make jewelry, as well as other crafts. I enjoy coloring with my kids, too.
I love to hike. I truly love being out-doors in the sunshine. There are several hiking trails where we live, such as the Appalachian Trail. My husband and I get out there as much as we can. 

Kayelle Allen
1.     Looking at pictures of beautiful places. I can go on a mental-vacation by doing so. I especially love images of mountains and valleys. I grew up in the southwest.
2.    Creating art. I enjoy using Photoshop, and while I'm not good at freehand art and drawing, I do like photomanipulation. Doing covers for The Author's Secret is an extension of that love. My husband is actively involved in helping me with that part of the business. In addition, I've created a lot of the art on my website, which has over 100 pages to explore.
3.    I'm also loving collaborating with my sons. I've helped Jamin on his art project, a web comic for Nimajination Studios (Call in the Night). He's done about 30 panels so far, and we go over the details before he publishes them. My other son, Joel, advises me on the science aspects of my science fiction, as well as many of the role-playing parts. He's been instrumental in helping me develop the gaming system used by my immortals. I hope to one day release it as an actual game.
R.L. Naquin -
1.     Road trips—it doesn’t even matter where I’m going or how long it’ll take.
2.     LEGO Monster Fighters.
3.     Pineapple Dole Whip Floats from Disneyland and Walt Disney World.

Dara Young - Anything purple. A few things I have in my fav color: 1 room in my house, a stapler, my Kindle cover, a hair brush, my phone cover, lap blanket, pajamas...you see the pattern here. Yes?
My cats—because they rule.
To laugh. My DH keeps me giggling pretty regularly and so do some of the guys at work. If you can't laugh at life how do you enjoy it?
Zenobia Renquist - Three things I love:
* Collecting things from my fandoms (Tardis stuff, Lego buildings, and manga... to name a few)
* Movies with plots that make me think (Cloud Atlas, Matrix, V for Vendetta)
* Learning a new skill (I recently took up knitting and decided my first project should be the 4th Doctor's scarf because my hubby wants it for Christmas. I started on 02 Dec and as of 15 Dec I'm at the half way point.)

Mia Darien - Three things that I love besides family, reading, and writing...are animals, dancing, and lighting stuff on fire in World of Warcraft.
Jami Gray
1.     Starbucks—Hello, my name is Jami, and I’m a coffee addict…
2.    Crime and history shows—ID, History and Discovery channels, best thing ever!
3.    Target shooting—fairly new development, but it’s become our latest family adventure. Lot more fun than I thought it would be…
BR Kingsolver
1.     Travel. I love to see new places, experience new things. This comes out in my writing as my characters tend to do a lot of traveling.
2.     Skiing. There is nothing like the freedom I feel flying down a ski slope. The mountains in winter are so beautiful.
3.     Good live music. I love to sit in a small venue, like a coffee house or a bar, and listen to gifted musicians play music that they love.

Krystal Shannan
I love swimming, cooking, and watching a good movies.
Maegan Provan - I really love finding new shows and rediscovering old favorites on Netflix. I complete devoured both seasons of Alphas in a matter of a couple of weeks and I have to say I was definitely inspired. Another thing I really love is Markiplier. His channel is incredibly entertaining and a very wonderful man. Gaming. I am play Guild Wars 2, Minecraft, The Sims 3 and every once in a great while World of Warcraft quite frequently. 

Ann Gimpel
Three things I love: Mountaineering, skiing, cooking

Melissa Keir I love my puppies. They are not only entertaining but also give great kisses! Another thing I love is sleeping in on cold winter mornings. There’s something about snuggling under the covers. Finally, I love listening to that perfect song that shares my mood and makes me sing along. (Just don’t ask me to do it aloud- I’m not that good.)
Dariel Raye
Crushed ice – terrible for our teeth, but I use it as a snack sometimes instead of junk food. Has the same calming effect.
Animals – Love nearly all animals, wild and domestic. I’m as passionate about my pets and animal rights as I am about kids.
Outdoor art exhibits and symphony concerts.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Dariel's Feature: My Friend Jade Kerrion Has a New Release!

Eternal Night ebook "What makes Kerrion’s writing so compelling is the beautifully flawed characters that find themselves in unexpected relationships...these kind of character level conflicts make Kerrion’s writing so deliciously addictive."—Noor A Jahangir, Author of The Changeling King “Everything you want in a great story. Love, intrigue, action, betrayal, and understanding.”—Ch’kara Silverwolf, Author of Daughter of Light and Dark Alone for a millennium, since a human murdered her beloved consort, Ashra, the immortal icrathari queen, rules over Aeternae Noctis, the domed city of eternal night. Her loneliness appears to be at an end when her consort’s soul is reborn in a human, Jaden Hunter, but their reunion will not be easy. Icrathari are born, not made. If Ashra infuses Jaden with her immortal blood, he will be a vampire, a lesser creature of the night, a blood-drinker rather than a soul-drinker. Furthermore, Jaden is sworn to protect his half-sister, five-year-old Khiarra. She is the child of prophecy, destined to end the eternal night and the dominion of the Night Terrors—the icrathari and the vampires. As Ashra struggles to sustain her crumbling kingdom in the face of enemies without and treachery within, Jaden fights to defend his sister and unravel a greater mystery: what is the city of eternal night, and how did it come to be? E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository
With Tera beside her, Ashra strode forward. A wall of vampires parted to reveal the other two icrathari, Siri and Elsker. A dark-haired human slumped at Elsker’s feet, his wrists cuffed behind his back. Ashra stifled a chuckle. Surely Tera was overreacting; the human was by far the weakest creature in the chamber. Tera knelt down, wrapped her fingers into the human’s hair, and pulled his head back. The human’s face was handsome enough—the slash of his cheekbones accentuated his perfectly proportioned, sculptured features—but taken as a whole, he was not compelling enough to justify the fuss. Ashra shrugged. “You’re wasting my time, Tera.” Apparently undeterred, the icrathari warlord shook the human hard. His eyes flashed open. They were brilliant green, the exact color of the emerald ring Ashra wore on the index finger of her right hand. His gaze was unfocused, and the reflexive narrowing of his eyes matched the clenching of his jaw, hinting of wrenching pain. Tera looked up and met Ashra’s gaze. “Taste his soul.” Ashra recoiled, her upper lip curling in disgust. She had no desire to taste a human’s soul. Over the centuries, humans had grown weak, their small lives consumed by superstition and fear. It was better to live on the edge of perpetual starvation than fill her hunger with the pitiful excuse humans called a soul. “Go deep,” Tera said. But why? Ashra’s brow furrowed. She glanced at Siri and Elsker, but the two icrathari shrugged, apparently no more clued in than she was. She looked back at Tera. The icrathari warlord known as Ashra’s Blade was the epitome of calm understatement. If she was so insistent, she must have had a reason. Ashra knelt beside the human. Without flinching, she placed her hand against his muscled abdomen. It was bloody, his flesh ripped by a vampire’s talons. The man tensed at her touch, and his eyes flared wide with agony when her soul-sucking powers leeched into him. His breath came hard and fast, his chest heaving with the effort as he twisted in Tera’s unyielding grip, trying to break free. Ashra’s eyes narrowed. The human was weakened—tapped into his life source, she waded through his dazed thoughts and shivered from the echo of each spasm of pain that wracked his body—but still, he fought Tera on the physical plane and Ashra on the psychic dimension, denying her access to his memories and to his soul. She frowned and slammed her will against his, tearing an anguished scream from his throat, but still, his will did not crumble. Askance, Ashra looked at Tera. “Did you taste him?” Tera nodded. “It wasn’t hard the first time; he didn’t know what to expect, but apparently, he does now and is doing a fine job of fighting back.” Was that grudging respect she heard in Tera’s voice? “Does his soul really matter?” The icrathari nodded again. Ashra’s shoulders shifted with the motion of a silent sigh. His resistance left her with little choice. She leaned forward and glided her lips over his in a whisper of a kiss. Human myths spoke of succubi and incubi—demons that, with a touch, could stir lust in their unwilling victims. All myths were based in reality. The maddening beauty and soul-sucking powers of the icrathari had spawned the legends of succubi and incubi. With a touch, the icrathari could lure their victims into a state of sexual ecstasy, bending the will and baring the soul. The human tensed against Ashra, resisting the intimate contact. She almost recoiled. Had the centuries dulled her innate powers? Surely she had not forgotten how to lure a man. She closed her eyes and remembered love. As always, Rohkeus’s fine-featured face—those beautiful gold-flecked green eyes, so unusual for an icrathari, and teasing smile—came to the fore. With a dreamy half-smile, she deepened the kiss, driving the memory of love before her like a sharpened stake. At last, the man relaxed, succumbing to the kiss. She leaned into him, heedless of his crimson blood staining her white gown. He was warm, feverish even. Just skimming over six feet, he had more than twelve inches on her, but his physical strength, compared to hers, was puny. She was well aged; over four millennia old, she was the oldest of the icrathari and the strongest. She could have broken his neck with as little effort as a human child snapping a twig. Her hand trailed across his muscled torso. He made it easy for her to be gentle. His body trembled as if he longed for her. His mouth was hungry for her kiss. He arched up against her, as if craving more. His need was like a living creature, wild and aching for her touch. Eyes closed, Ashra shivered. Only one other person had desired her as much. And he was dead. She forced her way through the memories of pale bodies tangled upon cool silk sheets. When her soul-sucking power leeched out, it found no opposition. Images of the human’s life rewound in a blaze of vivid sights, sounds, and sensations. Ashra looked up at Tera, her smile little more than a barely perceptible curve of her lips. “He fancies himself the protector of the child of prophecy. Was she among those taken tonight?” Tera nodded. Ashra chuckled, the sound without humor. “It’s a pity her genetic heritage wasn’t sufficiently superior to prevent her from being culled.” “There’s more. Go deep.” She pushed past the blackness at the start of his memories, expecting deeper darkness. Instead, the colors shifted into shades of ochre and gray. Memories, older than his body, resided in his soul; memories of an Earth long since lost to them—a planet surrounded and nourished by water; images of tall buildings glistening beneath a benevolent sun, and of thriving cities filled with the bustle of humans; memories of quiet and intimate conversations beneath a silver moon, the same silver moon that now graced Malum Turris with its light, though a thousand years older and viewed only from beneath the protection of the dome. She saw herself as he must have seen her, a much-younger icrathari, still hopeful for the future, never realizing that the Earth they had all known and loved was irretrievably lost. Had she ever looked that vulnerable? Had her smile ever been so beautiful, so filled with love as she looked upon— “Rohkeus?” Oh, blessed Creator, was that stricken whisper her voice?
E-books available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Apple / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / Smashwords Paperbacks available at Amazon / Amazon UK / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository Connect with Jade Kerrion at: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Amazon

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Dariel's Feature: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Author Patrick O'Scheen

Join me in welcoming Patrick O'Scheen to Musings. His sci-fi/fantasy masterpieces have received rave reviews, so if you're like me, and your taste sometimes runs to something a bit different, outside the box, you'll love these! Book links are embedded in printed titles. Take a few minutes to read the interview and get to know Patrick a little better :-)

Amazon links:

We all have a little Dragon inside of us, something that struggles to find solace.….Dreamer is the first book in a series that portrays life as a mixture of fantasy and reality. The main character, Magic, flows between the worlds, often preferring one more than the other. Both of his lives are fraught with their own dangers. He must struggle with illness and alternatively with the life of a Great Red Dragon.


The world of Marithe is back! The story of a young gamer named Xavier is woven into a plot of denial, betrayal and intrigue. He lives a double life running from those who would use him and searching for unencumbered love. Demons and gypsies fill the game panorama, entangling Xavier in a disaster that could destroy the dragon race and profoundly change his world…

What would it be like to locate the father that you never knew? 

For Kris Cane this is a dream come true. However, Kris’ father has other ideas about his newly discovered son… The young orphan finds his family with the help of genetic testing, but something is terribly wrong. The boy tries to discover a way to survive as he is embroiled in a murder plot. Can he escape with the unlikely assistance of his cat, a nun, and a detective who wants to see his new-found parent jailed? 


1.    When did you know you wanted to be a writer? What were some of your first steps toward making your dream a reality? How would you say most of your stories are conceived? Dreams? Research? Experience?

Things in my life changed drastically and I found myself house-bound. I began my calling as a writer as pure self-amusement. I sat down one day and put my soul on paper. All of my stories are in essence a part of me.  Life experiences, and my personal opinions are communicated in the actions and words of the characters. 

2.    What 3 things would you like readers to know about you?

The word is already out…I am a cat.  My favorite color is grey-striped. All the while the human thought I was just sleeping on the keyboard.

3.    Tell us about your books. Genre, titles, any favorite characters? What can we look forward to from you in the near future? WIP’s, upcoming releases?

Dreamer and Seer are part of a fantasy series called the Chronicles of Marithe. To date there are four books, two as yet unpublished called Dancer and Healer.  Magic is the main personality in book one, but my favorite is Thornton, a morgith who appears in each of the books.  Dancer and Healer will both be out in 2014.

Kris is a young adult book about a cat and his boy. While it contains aspects of fantasy, it is basically a poignant and touching mystery story that has a message about family. This book is part of a series based on Charles the Cat.  Jack, the second in the series will release in 2014.

I am currently writing a young adult fantasy called Newling Traveler that is a spirited tale of adventure in a dream world.

4.      Tell us a bit about your dragon hybrids. In your opinion do you need special skills to raise them?

Dragon kind in Marithe is a species that can change form to human…with practice and control. They are often found intermixed in human communities with no one the wiser. Many choose to live in this smaller form as a matter of convenience. Dragons can be hatched or born…depending on the species mix, but birth is often impossible for the mother.  Most are raised like any other child…until they learn how to shift.

The dragon of Newling Traveler is also a shape-shifter. He has rather pronounced human characteristics including a very strong sense of guilt.

5.    Is there a common thread in your books? How do your values show up in your writing? Jungian philosophy? What do you want readers to take from your writing?

There are many ideas that flow through my stories. Prejudice, guilt, betrayal—all play parts in the plots. The characters have a well-defined understanding of right and wrong, though the idea is often transformed at length by the story.
When you finish one of my books, I want you to be changed.  I want your thoughts to be touched by what you read. All of my stories can be read on many levels.  I would like to think that they are simply entertaining on the face of it. However, if you read between the lines, I have a great deal to say about life.

6.     What do you look for in a good book? In what ways would you say your books exhibit these qualities?

I personally like a story that draws me in and makes me believe. I’m very fond of a fast paced read that has me asking the age-old question “What happens next?”  I would need to add that I am especially fond of books that delve beyond the surface. I want more than a nice story. I want to be challenged to think. I would hope that my work exhibits these characteristics
 I prefer to read and write very short chapters because life often has a way of interfering with my reading time.

7.    What lifts your spirits when you’re discouraged?

I often blog about staying encouraged. I’d like to think that my words sometimes help others through difficult times. It isn’t always easy.
I never once have believed that what I have to say is not worth reading. However, getting people to actually read your words is a daunting task. I think as writers we must keep in mind that if we only touch even one life, we can make a difference.

8.    What tips can you offer towards building and maintaining a strong support system as a writer?

My support comes from friends who read my scribblings and other writers who experience the same problems. Advice? Find people of like mind in networking online, in book groups, even on video games.

Have a great day!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Dariel's Feature: Author January Valentine is Visiting

Head Over Wheels
January Valentine
Facebook Event Tuesday 12/17

Losing someone is never easy, especially when you hold yourself responsible. He wants to open his heart again, but he can't. So he's found another way to fill the void, ease the pain.

Her first shot at love broke her heart, not her spirit. She's determined to climb back up to the top of her class and become a detective before turning twenty-five.

Life is smooth sailing for Jewelia Delarosa, NYPD's next super cop, or so she hopes. But the twenty-one year old headstrong Latina from middle class Poughkeepsie has a lot to learn about love, and she's picked James "Indigo" Ballou to be her teacher.

The moment she sets eyes on him her world stands still, while his begins to spin. Yet, the wealthy and elusive med student has some baggage that's preventing him from surrendering his heart to the woman who has already captured his mind. Involvement with him might alter her plans and test her resolve. She should walk away. But she can't. She's made a decision to hang around and find out what he's all about. Regardless of the outcome, she'll fight to the end.

Together they fear the emotional, hunger for the physical. She doesn't trust him. He doesn't trust himself. It's one step forward, two steps back for the struggling Manhattan couple in this steamy romantic drama. Stumble along with Jewelia and Indigo as they land Head Over Wheels in an unexpected conclusion readers call ... Absolutely beautiful.

Coming in 2014, Indigo's point of view.

January Valentine is the pen name of Victoria Valentine, New York writer and indie book publisher. See Victoria's Author page: amazon.com/author/victoriavalentine

I chose to use a pen name because some of my writing is steamy, and I wanted to separate Victoria, who writes contemporary fiction and children's storybooks. Since my birth month is January, January Valentine seemed an appropriate pseudonym.

In June, I released my first paranormal romance, Beautiful Experiment, book one of Island of Defiance Trilogy. Wheel Wolf was released on August 20th, and instantly became an Amazon bestseller in Horror/Suspense/Paranormal.

I've written three other novels: Love Dreams contemporary romance, Sweet Dreams in the Mind of a Serial Killer, and Head Over Wheels New Adult romance. All are available on Amazon and other booksellers, or will be shortly in ebook and paperback.

I publish books for other authors through Water Forest Press, which I founded some years ago. In the past I have written poetry and song lyrics, but now I focus on fiction. I've created multiple websites and blogs that I don't have time to manage very well.

My desire to be in a rock band brought me into a recording studio ... where my lyrics sprang to life with the help of a local alternative rock band. Together, we produced a CD.

I enjoy designing book covers and youtube videos. I enjoy hiking and swimming. I love all kinds of music. Watching horror flicks and Tyler Perry movies are my escape from reality.

I have an addiction to engraved pens that I buy to accompany each of my books. My office is filled with paperbacks and swag.

A bit about my books:
Wheel Wolf: Beneath a full, blood moon, on the way home from his girlfriend's house, Jack Bailey encounters something terrifying at Phantom Lake. Fleeing the unknown, he dumps his bike and is found unconscious, his body tangled with a naked girl. Jack struggles to regain memory and the use of his legs, while fighting a sudden urge for raw meat and to bay at the moon. Wheel Wolf is a story of unconditional love that lives beyond the grave, and a relentless fight for retribution. An Amazon bestseller in Werewolves/Shifters/Horror/Suspense.

Beautiful Experiment: Six unruly teens are abducted on their way to a juvie home. Dumped onto an uncharted island. Could things get any worse? Hell, yeah. Hostility and envy run rampant. Throw in some alphas, divas and demons, and what do you have? Beautiful Experiment. Book One of the Island of Defiance Trilogy.
Love Dreams: She's a beautiful wreck who wants nothing to do with me. Beaten and left for dead, she suffers from night terrors. When she keeps running into a gorgeous guy things heat up, but memories of abuse dampen the fire. He's handsome. He's wealthy. He's in a wheelchair. His entire life has changed, and the past months have been hell. But there's a bright spot in Michael's life: a girl named Sienna.

Sweet Dreams: A serial killer is on the loose, moving up the East Coast, leaving bodies & notes. Planting roses in his victims. Leonardo Gibraldi, Baltimore's sexy Assistant DA, is tracking the fiend who's responsible for the grisly murder of his ex-girlfriend. Leo's out for revenge -- so is the killer. Between hunting the madman, and fighting off beautiful women, Leo's got his hands full. There's one break in the case: An eye witness who says, "It doesn't look human."

Head Over Wheels: Life is smooth sailing for Jewelia Delarosa, NYPD's next super cop, or so she hopes. The twenty-one year old headstrong Latina from middle class Poughkeepsie has a lot to learn, and like it or not, James Ballou aka Indigo, is her designated teacher. The problem is, the wealthy and elusive med student has some baggage that's preventing him from giving his heart to the woman who already has his mind. It's one step forward, two steps back for the struggling Manhattan couple in this steamy New Adult romance. A 400 page breezy, sometimes humorous drama that includes a bit of mystery.

I'm part of Snowed In paranormal anthology. A group of talented paranormal and erotic authors have come together to weave you the hottest short stories for the holiday season. You'll meet Vampires, Werewolves, Immortals, Dragon Guardians, and Witches. Be prepared for steam, laughter, twists, and one night of passion.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Dariel's Feature: Interview with Stephanie Keyes

1.    What 3 things would you like readers to know about you? 1) I’m not a serious person—I spend way more time telling really bad jokes than probably anyone you know. 2) I’m a hopeless romantic. 3) I read almost as music as I write.

2.    Tell us about your books. Genre, titles, any favorite characters? WIP’s, upcoming releases? I have four releases out now that are part of The Star Child series—The Star Child, After Faerie, The Fallen Stars, and The Star Catcher. They are all Young Adult ParaRoms about a seventeen-year-old prodigy, Kellen St. James and a Celtic goddess, Calienta. In the series, Kellen and Calienta are busy fighting The Children of Danu the faeries of Ireland gone bad. Together, they must fight to save the world from Arawn, the Lord of Faerie, and later, a new big-bad, the Star Catcher. The final book in the series, The Star Catcher, was just released on Bovember 10th, 2013, so now I am working on polishing a new YA Novel that incorporates my love of both music and spooky things.

3.    Is there a common thread in your books? How do your values show up in your writing? Jungian philosophy? What do you want readers to take from your writing?  Yes. I think the common thread is that no matter where you come from, what’s happened to you, you can choose who you want to be and how you want to act. That being said, I’m also a certified Myers-Briggs instructor, so I do truly believe in a lot of Carl Jung’s teachings. Particularly, this notion that you are born with certain preferences in terms of how you prefer to interact in the world. I had fun type-watching my characters. I know all of their MBTI types, for example.

4.    What do you look for in a good book? In what ways would you say your books exhibit these qualities? An escape. I like reality to a point, but generally, I want to go to a world that takes me out of my own. So I usually seek out books that are set in different countries or worlds. In The Star Child series, all of the books are set in places I’ve visited, like Ireland, Maine, etc. They were all escapes for me. I broke the mode with my most recent WIP, though. It’s set in my hometown of Pittsburgh.

5.    What are some of the best social media, marketing, and publicity tips you’ve come across? Don’t talk about yourself constantly. I try to employ that whenever I can. Also, and this is my own personal take, I look at the people I meet on social media as just that—people. Not social media connections. I wouldn’t meet a stranger for the first time and say, “Hey, I’m Stephanie Keyes. Buy my book.” That seems rude and pushy. I just try to be myself and hope people have an interest. If they do, it won’t be because I’m trying to shove my own agenda down their throats.

6.    What are some things you know now about writing and being an author that you wish someone had told you at the very beginning? The importance of a goof critique group! I wrote for five years before I caught on to the idea of joining a critique group. I have learned so much from the experience. My writing has developed tremendously since I first attended and I’ve made some life-long friends. There is something to be said for getting to know like-minded people.

7.    Along that same line, what are some of your favorite resources? Writer’s Digest was the first resource I ever found. Definitely check out their website. World Literary CafĂ© is fantastic. Also, search out groups in your genre and see what they have to offer.

8.    What lifts your spirits when you’re discouraged? Nutella.

Author Bio
Stephanie Keyes is the author of the YA Fantasy series, The Star Child, which currently includes The Star Child, After Faerie, The Fallen Stars, and the soon to-be-released finale, The Star Catcher (November 2013), all from by Inkspell Publishing. Mrs. Keyes is hard at work on a new YA Paranormal Romance.

When she's not writing, Stephanie is also a graphic designer, international speaker, teacher, musician, avid reader, and Mom to two little boys who constantly keep her on her toes. In addition, she's best friend to her incredible husband of eleven years.

Mrs. Keyes holds an undergraduate degree in Business and Management Information Systems from Robert Morris University and a M.Ed. from Duquesne University. She is a member of the Society For Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), as well as a featured author in Love a Happy Ending Lifestyle Magazine.

Contact Stephanie

Book Links

Monday, December 23, 2013

Dariel's Feature: Angela Rose with "All Bottled Up"

Meet Angela Rose! She's got a great new book featuring men in kilts.
All Bottled Up
The magic of true love has the power to overcome all.

After struggling for years with her self-esteem and weight issues, Robin Summers has matured and grown very fond of her voluptuous full-figure.  Not long after she lands her dream job as a marine biologist at the New England Aquarium, she meets sexy attorney, Todd Healy.  A whirlwind relationship between her and Todd ensues, and before either realizes it, they are planning an intimate, tropical wedding in Aruba with their immediate families. All seems perfect two days before “big day”, until Robin walks in on Todd in the arms of another woman.
The humiliating scene sends Robin running off into the night, confused and angry.  It seems she has run for miles, when she stumbles upon an unseen object and is hurled into the sand.  With the help of the full moon, she finds an ornate bottle and impulsively pulls off the jeweled stopper.   What she expects to find is a mysterious note, but what she ends up with is a middle-aged, gay genie named, Zahir.
With his eccentric mannerisms, Zahir quickly puts Robin’s broken heart and battered self-esteem at ease.  Still owing her three wishes, it doesn’t take long for the genie to set Robin’s confidence back on the right path.  He can grant her anything she wants, but the one thing she truly desires…….is true love.  
Robin is determined to find a way around the huge glitch in the genie’s limitations and makes a list of “must haves” she wants in a future husband. This time when Zahir flicks his wrist, a sexy highland warrior breaks through the purple haze, and he does not look happy.  Its then that Robin realizes her wish didn’t just create the man of her dreams, but pulled him from his own time.

Only .99! Amazon and Nook Buy Links: US Link: http://amzn.to/1cferWV  U.K. Link: http://amzn.to/17m91UC Nook Link:  http://bit.ly/1cGrT5R

About the Author
Ms. Rose loves reading, writing, history, romance and all things Scottish! She is a member of  Romance
Writers of America, as well as its local chapter the Heart of Carolina and the Triangle Writer’s Group, both located in Raleigh, NC. All Bottled Up is her first time travel/romance. Look for her next book, a full-length Time Travel/Romance, Once Upon A Highlander coming soon.

 Her love of reading began at an early age, but it was in high school when the love of literature intensified after being introduced to the works of Charlotte Bronte and Shakespeare!! Her favorite book of all time will always be The Outsiders by SE Hinton. This is when she discovered her love of writing and telling a story.  Other inspirations are Melissa Mayhue and Paula Quinn!

Angela Rose has one grown daughter and three gorgeous grandchildren. Her and her husband decided when they married 14 years ago, that they wanted a son, so they adopted six, yes six boys!  When she’s not reading and writing, You can find her running to and from schools, to sports practices or appointments!!  Ms. Rose is also an avid blogger and you can read about her many adventures in raising a blended, multi-cultural family in the 21st Century.  Kids have the most amazing minds!
 Born and raised in southern Maine, but moved to the Raleigh, NC area in 2008 for her husband's work, she is an advocate for animals, children and juvenile diabetes! She has a Boxer named Greta, a Chocolate Lab named Moose Man and a Pug named Mama Mia and an African Grey Parrot that thinks he's Clint Eastwood!!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Dariel's Feature: Victoria Adams is Visiting Today

Help me welcome Victoria Adams today! We're featuring her series followed by an interview, so grab a cup of java and hang out with us a while :-)

Dancing in Circles. (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009PFNPMG) One born into privilege and a charmed life surrounded by love and family. The other born to a life of violence on the streets as the solemn gang leader of the notorious Shoresmen. A young, idealistic co-ed, Julie Anderson, meets a jaded, cold gang member, Robert Holiday, and cracks his icy shell, allowing the warmth of her love to awaken his soul.

Circles Divided– (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BBKNDAC) Is the love of a girl from wealthy Westland and a street punk from the slums of the Shore strong enough to surpass all that life will throw at them and forge a life together? Is Julie willing to sacrifice her childhood dream of becoming a professional dancer for the man she loves? Is Robert willing to lay down his ties to the gang in order to hold onto his new found love?
Sacrifices must be made, but will they be enough?

Circles Interlocked - http://www.amazon.com/Circles-Interlocked-ebook/dp/B005S8LI46  Having been betrayed by the man she assumed she was destined to be with forever; Julie Anderson slapped Robert Holiday in an angry ending to their brief love affair. Heartbroken that her love affair didn't end with the fairy tale Happily Ever After, Julie leaves town to pursue her dream of being a dancer. As fate has a curious sense of humor, eight years later, they wake up in bed together. Now it is up to love to fix what time cannot mend.

Interview with Victoria Adams
Hi, Victoria.

1.    When did you know you wanted to be a writer? What were some of your first steps toward making your dream a reality? How would you say most of your stories are conceived? Dreams? Research? Experience?

I never knew I wanted to be I writer. I just found writing easy. I could write short stories in elementary school and essays were a piece of cake in high school and university. I was – and still am – intrigued by people who say they can't write.  My philosophy – put the pen on the paper – or – fingers on the keyboard.

I became an author by accident. I taught high school. A couple of my student complained there was nothing for them to read. This was pre-Twilight, so I wrote Dancing in Circles and Circles Divided for them.

My stories are conceived by my imagination. I get an idea and run with it. I wrote a book based on a line of dialogue I thought of.

2.    What 3 things would you like readers to know about you?

I'm Canadian, so my book is written in Canadian. I love murder mysteries; Agatha Christie is my favourite author. In the summer, I love to garden. I can write scenes in my head while weeding or deadheading a plant.

3.    Tell us about your books. Genre, titles, any favorite characters? What can we look forward to from you in the near future? WIP’s, upcoming releases?

Dancing in Circles, Circles Divided and Circles Interlocked are the three books that comprise Circles Trilogy. The first 2 – Dancing in Circles and Circles Divided – are NA contemporary – written for 17 and up. The 3rd – Circles Interlocked – is an adult contemporary.
My favourite character in the book is Robert. The book seems to circle around Julie, but it is driven by Robert.
I have a few completed books sitting on my harddrive; one is in a mass rewrite and critique. Its working title is A Guy and A Girl.

4.    What are some of the best social media, marketing, and publicity tips you’ve come across?

If I knew the answer to this I'd be rich. I'm a struggling indie author trying not to drown in the quagmire of promo.

5.    What are some things you know now about writing and being an author that you wish someone had told you at the very beginning?

The first thing is that the way we are taught to write in school has nothing with how we write fiction. That was a steep learning curve.

Second, and most importantly, THEY can be ignored. Who's THEY? Those invisible people who make the rules. They say you can't start a book with a question. They say you can't write in first person. They say...  Once I figured out there is no "Book of Rules" hidden somewhere that everyone seems to know about but me then I stopped listening to a lot of crap and started writing the book the way I wanted to.

I guess you could put a 4th thing to know about me – I write out of the box. I write in omni. Some of my books will have a happy ending and some won't.

Critics and reviewers can tear apart Dancing in Circles and Circles Divided because I know they're wrong. I put my book out to my target audience – older teenagers. I printed out three copies and handed the manuscripts to three students I knew I could trust. They read it. They loved it. But – they were my students – so they "had to say that". Then they asked if they could give it to a friend. It ended up with students coming from other high schools to chat with me. They cried about things that happened in the book. They got angry with characters. These teenagers connected with it. Students did book reports on it in English class. Two students painted art pieces based on the main characters – Julie and Robert. The principal of my school was called by another to see if the author in his school would do a workshop. My principal had no idea what he was talking about.

I was stopped by an older male teenager – not from the high school I worked at – and asked if I was the person who wrote Dancing in Circles. I said yes. He high fived me and said, "I read it. F'in' awesome."

So what is all of that rambling about – the question paraphrased was - What are some things you wish you knew when you started writing?
I wish I knew - write it the way you want. Don't listen to the critics. Write your book.

6.    What lifts your spirits when you’re discouraged?

Chocolate and my cps – when I'm down I can complain to them and they cheer me up.

7.    What tips can you offer towards building and maintaining a strong support system as a writer?

Do the impossible – find a good critique group and then inside of that – find some good critique partners. How do you do that? Try. Try. Try. I've left probably a dozen critique groups. You're probably thinking – because she was told her story was bad. Nope.
Some people can't think beyond the edges of the box. Robert is a gang member – one person kept correcting his grammar. (I ain't done nuthin' wrong – I haven't done anything wrong) Robert uses the word "you'se". One person complained – I don't like that word. It sounds like he's from Detroit.  Well, duh – I grew up in Windsor. The word is part of my lexicon. When I explained that to her it was like talking to a rock.
So your search for a good critique group is good to be long and sometimes painful. Keep digging because awesome cps are better than gold.

Around the Web with Victoria

Blog – Victoria's Pages of Romance – http://victoriaadams.blogspot.com

Facebook - Circles Trilogy Page - http://www.facebook.com/CirclesTrilogy?ref=hl

Google+ - Victoria Adams

Plus – Triberr, Amazon Author, LinkedIn, SocialOmph, Goodreads etc