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Glad you stopped by. I hope you'll stop by again for Monday Morning Musings, Meet the Author Thursday, Weekend Writing Warriors, and guests whenever they drop in.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

#WeWriWa THE PILOT Last Warning #sfr

Each weekend, the Weekend Writing Warriors share an 8 - 10 sentence snippet. Be sure to visit the other authors. You can find them here.

Thanks to everyone who visited last week. I'm sharing snippets from The Pilot: An Outer Rim Novel. It's the 1st book in a series featuring strong women on the frontier of space. Celara's ship was hailed by one claiming to be Coalition Security.

Please excuse the creative punctuation, necessary to keep this within the guidelines. It's also edited a little from the original.

“What is your cargo and destination?” the pirate demanded, “Respond or prepare to be boarded.”
“Over my dead body you’ll board my ship,” With the sublight engines almost back online, in another min or two they could blow this pop stand.
“It is not customary for the Coalition to disguise its Security vessels by removing identification markers,” Arjay said thoughtfully, “Even so, they always use an official communications channel, which this ship is not, consequently I am ninety-six point three percent certain that is not Coalition Security—it could be a trap.”
“Cargo transport, this is your last warning—respond or be boarded for inspection.”
The pirate vessel, which had been stationary, began moving closer.
“I lost my last load to you pirates, I am not losing another.”
She shoved juice into the primary energizing coils, but when her transport, d’Enfaden’s Thermopylae, responded with lethargy, she glared at Arjay, “I thought you fixed the accelerator.”
“I beg your pardon,” He always got huffy when he perceived insult, “Without a fully-equipped facility, complete repair is not possible.”
She smacked the control panel, “C’mon, c’mon, c’mon.”
“She responds to a gentle touch,” Arjay admonished, “Just like the majority of your gender,” he touched two pads on the instrument panel, “You may try again. Gently.”






        There's no place like home and he stole hers. 

Life on the frontier of space is hard enough so when pirates stole Celara d'Enfaden's cargo, she vowed not to be tricked again. Determined to make an example out of indie pilots who disobey orders, Coalition Administrator Trevarr Jovano impounds Celara’s starship and cargo. If he backs down, he’ll lose respect. If she can’t deliver her cargo, she’ll default on her loan and lose her only home—her ship. More important than her ship, though, is her brother. To rescue him from a galactic gangster, she’ll even work with Jovano who is bent on avenging his wife’s murder.

 Amazon ~ AmazonUK ~ B&N ~ Kobo ~ iBooks ~ Smashword









Saturday, June 22, 2019

#WeWriWa THE PILOT: Arjay's Superior Intellect

Each weekend, the Weekend Writing Warriors share an 8 - 10 sentence snippet. Be sure to visit the other authors. You can find them here.

Thanks to everyone who visited last week. I'm sharing snippets from The Pilot: An Outer Rim Novel. It's the 1st book in a series featuring strong women on the frontier of space. Celara's ship was hailed by one claiming to be Coalition Security.

Please excuse the creative punctuation, necessary to keep this within the guidelines. It's also edited a little from the original.


She’d taken a chance shutting down in the middle-of-nowhere space to fix the sluggish sublight accelerator. But there wasn’t a convenient planet—let alone a repair station—in this sector of the Rim. Pirates zeroed in on wounded prey faster than Terran jackals.
“What if they are not pirates?” Arjay said, “Their offer could be genuine—the ship might, indeed, be Coalition Security.”
She grimaced, “Great minds think alike.”
“That is rather frightening since mine is the superior intellect.”
“Stick it in your ear, Arjay, let’s get my baby up and running—we need to haul ass.”
“I am lodging a formal protest—if you must record the entertainment signals emanating from a primitive planet, please refrain from using its disgusting colloquialisms.”
“Wassamadder, Arjay, you don’t like Terran slang?”




        There's no place like home and he stole hers. 

Life on the frontier of space is hard enough so when pirates stole Celara d'Enfaden's cargo, she vowed not to be tricked again. Determined to make an example out of indie pilots who disobey orders, Coalition Administrator Trevarr Jovano impounds Celara’s starship and cargo. If he backs down, he’ll lose respect. If she can’t deliver her cargo, she’ll default on her loan and lose her only home—her ship. More important than her ship, though, is her brother. To rescue him from a galactic gangster, she’ll even work with Jovano who is bent on avenging his wife’s murder.

 Amazon ~ AmazonUK ~ B&N ~ Kobo ~ iBooks ~ Smashword







Saturday, June 15, 2019

#WeWriWa THE PILOT Celara Could Lose Her Ship #SFR

Each weekend, the Weekend Writing Warriors share an 8 - 10 sentence snippet. Be sure to visit the other authors. You can find them here.

Apologies for missing the past three weeks. I'm back now and sharing snippets from The Pilot: An Outer Rim Novel. It's the 1st book in a series featuring strong women on the frontier of space. Celara's ship was hailed by one claiming to be Coalition Security. She and her co-pilot, RJ, plan to escape.

Please excuse the creative punctuation, necessary to keep this within the guidelines. It's also edited a little from the original.


“Cargo transport, I repeat, this is Coalition Security . . . identify yourself,” The pirate’s voice carried the ring of authority.
For a half sec, Celara had misgivings. What if they were Coalition Security? If she didn’t obey, she would be in deep horse pucky, but she’d been tricked before by pirates claiming to be Coalition Security. No way were they getting her cargo again because, if that happened, she would be in even deeper trouble. She’d gone into serious debt to replace the cargo the first pirates stole. If she lost this load, she would lose more than her investment. Her starship was the collateral securing her loan.




        There's no place like home and he stole hers. 

Life on the frontier of space is hard enough so when pirates stole Celara d'Enfaden's cargo, she vowed not to be tricked again. Determined to make an example out of indie pilots who disobey orders, Coalition Administrator Trevarr Jovano impounds Celara’s starship and cargo. If he backs down, he’ll lose respect. If she can’t deliver her cargo, she’ll default on her loan and lose her only home—her ship. More important than her ship, though, is her brother. To rescue him from a galactic gangster, she’ll even work with Jovano who is bent on avenging his wife’s murder.

 Amazon ~ AmazonUK ~ B&N ~ Kobo ~ iBooks ~ Smashword




Friday, June 7, 2019

Guest: JENNA BARWIN #NewRelease ~ DARK WINE AT DUSK #pnr @JennaBarwin


Please welcome Jenna Barwin. Her new release Dark Wine at Dusk sounds so interesting. She's here to answer questions readers want to know.

Thank you, Diane, for hosting me today. I’m so excited to be here. Dark Wine at Dusk is the third book in the Hill Vampire series, and it was released last week.


How was the Hill Vampire series born?
I’ve been fascinated by the vampire myth my entire life. I read Dracula as a young teen, and something in me wanted the vampire, the tragic hero, to get the girl. That was my starting point.
What is the Hill Vampire series about?
The series features an exclusive community of winemaking vampires and their mortal mates. They live on vineyard estates in the Sierra Escondida foothills.
Sounds fun. So, it’s a paranormal romance?
Yes, but it also combines murder mystery and political intrigue with the continuing love story.
The series begins with Dark Wine at Midnight, in which research scientist Cerissa Patel must find a way to save humanity from a vampire conspiracy without revealing what’s hidden beneath her skin. But her cover story isn’t enough to fool vampire Henry Bautista—he’s dark, dangerous, and will do anything to protect his town, including stopping her.
So, it’s an enemies to friends story?
The first book is very much a frenemies to lovers story. The series follows the romantic relationship of Cerissa and Henry, who, along with other members of their community, try to stop the vampire dominance movement (VDM), a vampire conspiracy that is trying to kill the leaders of Sierra Escondida and take over. The VDM plans a political coup, and once the path is cleared, will turn mortals into blood slaves.
What’s the heat level?
Steamy. When Henry and Cerissa get together sparks fly!
Who is your favorite character, and why?
The hero, Enrique “Henry” Bautista Vasquez. I enjoy writing him. He’s the first character I created in the Hill Vampire series, and I just loved the process of discovery—peeling back the layers to find out who he is.
What can you tell us about Henry?
He’s originally from Mexico. He came to California in the early 1800s, where he was turned vampire, and founded the town of Sierra Escondida. So he has a deep backstory, entwined with Mexico’s and California’s histories, and I like weaving them together.
He’s also an expert winemaker, with bourbon-brown eyes and long, ebony hair, but he’s a bit moody. Because of a dark secret he carries, he’s been unsuccessful at relationships. He’s also very protective of the town he founded. So when Dr. Cerissa Patel arrives in town, he’s suspicious of her, but also attracted to her, and his suspicion is fighting with the feelings she’s stirred up in him.
Dark Wine at Dusk digs deeper into the VDM conspiracy, but it’s also Henry’s story. The secret he’s kept buried for over a century is revealed, and Cerissa has an agonizing choice to make. In many ways, Dusk is Henry’s book.
Does he get his happily ever after?
No spoilers! But I can safely say it wouldn’t be a romance if he didn’t ultimately get his happily ever after with Cerissa. Still, he has to work for it over the series’ arc.
To put it another way, the Hill Vampire novels are a “same couple series.” I’m a fan of same couple series, so I wrote what I love.
What do you mean by same couple series?
It’s a series of novels following the same couple from their first hot glimpse of each other, all the way through to their marriage and beyond. As a reader, once I’ve fallen in love with a couple, I want to read more about them.
Faye Kellerman did a great job reeling me in with the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus mystery series. Peter Decker is a police detective and his Orthodox Jewish wife Rina assists him in solving crimes. They have their ups and downs, but I fell in love with them when they fell in love with each other. I happily followed them through their engagement, marriage, kids and ultimately, into retirement.
In the world of urban fantasy and paranormal romance, I swoon over Jeaniene Frost’s Cat and Bones books. She kept the sizzle going through seven books, along with writing very satisfying adventures for her pair. To keep me entertained, the adventure or mystery has to be as strong as the romance, and Jeaniene Frost delivers on both.
It’s what I hope to achieve with the Hill Vampire series.

Blurb for Dark Wine at Dusk:
A seductive spy. An alpha vampire. A hidden threat to their love...
When a rogue vampire group attacks again, Dr. Cerissa Patel's happily ever after with the man of her dreams must take a back seat to her mission.
Her lover, vampire Henry Bautista, is quick to pick up the gauntlet. He'll do anything to help his beautiful spy capture the conspirators who are determined to enslave mortals.
But as Henry's secret past rears its ugly head, it not only threatens their mission, but risks their love--and their very lives.
"Passionate, breathtaking and beautifully written." ~InD'tale Magazine
Excerpt:
Henry accepted the shiny silver pouch Cerissa handed him. Usually, she used a blue bag to package blood from her human clones and a red one when she drew a higher concentration of red blood cells. What did the silver bag contain?
“If you don’t mind being my guinea pig,” Cerissa added.
“Guinea pig?” He started a pan of water heating on the stove. The pouch wasn’t wrapped in a self-warming bag. “What is different about this blood?”
“While I was away, I figured out how to induce the clones to produce a higher concentration of stress hormones—adrenaline, as well as cortisol and norepinephrine, if you want to be technical—to create the blood Rolf craves.”
“You think this will satisfy him?”
“We’ll have to experiment to find out. I don’t know what the cause is. It could be a substance addiction he can be weaned off, with support. If his problem is akin to a deficiency, more like a diabetic who needs insulin to survive, then I’ll have to determine the proper dosage. Just because the blood produces a mental high doesn’t mean it’s bad for him.”
Henry turned off the flame under the pot and slid the bag into the warm water, swishing it around so the contents would heat evenly without cooking. Cooked blood was disgusting.
“There is an exhilaration that comes from drinking adrenaline-spiked blood—”
“I’m calling it ‘adrenaline-enhanced’ for now,” she said. “The other term has baggage.”
“You could be right.” He fished the bag out of the water, cut the corner with scissors, and poured it into an insulated coffee mug. A quick sniff told him it smelled like the blood of a victim who’d been hunted.
Is this a good idea?
He sniffed again, and a thread of apprehension brushed his skin. He took a sip and closed his eyes. The sudden rush pounded through his veins, followed by an ice-cold chill. He dropped the mug on the kitchen island. It toppled, and the blood spread across the granite counter.
Cerissa rushed to his side. “Henry, are you all right?”
He stumbled back, fighting the surge, the power, the desire for more.
“Y-you made it too s-strong,” he stammered, and clutched the edge of the island’s granite top. The spilled blood flowed between his fingers, invoking images he’d rather forget.
“I’m sorry,” she said, clinging to his arm.
Her scent beckoned to him. He gripped the counter harder and fought the driving desire to plunge his fangs into her. “Please, cariña, step back.”
“Henry—”
“Step back. I don’t need new sins to repent for.”

 Buy link (Amazon only/KindleUnlimited)https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07RY6N38W/


Bio & Social Media Links:
Jenna Barwin writes the Hill Vampire novels, which blend mystery, wine, and romantic spice into a heady (and steamy) combination.
When not writing, she enjoys underwater photography, and is known to occasionally attend a Victorian dance in full regalia right down to pantaloons and a hoop skirt.
If you'd like to stay up to date on her newest releases, join her VIP Readers: jennabarwin.com/jenna-barwins-newsletter/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JennaBarwin (@JennaBarwin)

Rafflecopter GIVEAWAY:
I’m sponsoring a giveaway to celebrate the launch of Dark Wine at Dusk and to thank my blog tour readers (giveaway begins 5/29/2019 and ends 6/25/2019)
The four prizes being given away are:
·         $10 Amazon.com Gift card
·         eBook copy of Dark Wine at Midnight
·         eBook copy of Dark Wine at Sunrise
·         eBook copy of Dark Wine at Dusk
No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. One prize per entrant. See Giveaway page for full terms and conditions.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

#IWSG:: Favorite Genre #sfr


Happy Insecure Writers Support Group Day. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. 

I'm thrilled to join this month's awesome hosts: Kim Lajevardi, Sylvia Ney, Sarah Foster, Jennifer Hawes, and Madeline Mora-Summonte!

This month's optional question is one I'm happy to answer.

Of all the genres you read and write, which is your favorite to write in and why?

Science Fiction Romance. My first published novel was a sci-fi romance. After being rejected so many times for contemporary romances, I decided to write for fun and, amazingly, Switched was accepted by a niche publisher.

I read and write science fiction because it reinforces my belief in a future. That other sentients live in our universe. That faster-than-light (FTL) speed is/will be possible. That we (humans) will explore other planets, either by traveling through wormholes or developing engines with warp or FTL drive.

Relationships are important to stories. Without characters, the stories would be dry scientific texts. Characters who work together make the story more interesting. Even better, characters who fall in love reinforce my belief that happy ever after is possible. It's a belief in the future of humankind. 

Combining science fiction with a strong relationship (romance) is my favorite genre to write--both for adults and for middle school age children.




When wise-cracking Jessie Wyndom is beamed from her farmhouse in Ann Arbor, MI aboard an Alliance starship, she meets a regular Mr. Spock. Captain Marcus Viator's well-organized life is turned upside down by a free-spirited Terran. Fate brings them together. Treachery tears them apart.



Her father is gone! Taken by the Queen of Compara’s agents. Fifteen-year-old Mara has to rescue him before the Queen tortures and kills him.

Instead of the kind, loving father she’s always known, he’s become demanding, critical, with impossible expectations—not just as Father but also as the only teacher in their frontier outpost. Mara would rather scoop zircan poop than listen to another boring lecture about governments on Central Planets. Give her a starship engine to take apart or, better yet, fly, and she’s happy. Now, he’s gone.
Never mind, they’ve had a rocky road lately.
Never mind, Father promised she could go off planet to Tech Institute next month when she turns fifteen, where she’ll learn to fly starships.
Never mind, she ran away because she’s furious with him because he reneged on that promise. Father is her only parent. She has to save him.

Ebooks:  Amazon ~ Amazon UK ~ Kobo ~ B&N ~ Smashwords

Print:  Amazon

Check out the latest anthology contest.


Guidelines and rules: 
Word count: 3500-5000
Genre: Middle Grade Historical – Adventure/Fantasy
Theme: Voyagers
Submissions accepted: May 1 - September 4, 2019
How to enter: Send your polished, formatted (double-spaced, no footers or headers), previously unpublished story to admin @insecurewriterssupportgroup.com before the deadline passes. Please include your contact details, your social links, and if you are part of the Blogging, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter IWSG group. 

Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.