Round Up!

1. Today is the last day for people to comment for a chance to win a free copy of Ascending Hearts at Stumbling Over Chaos! Contest closes at 7pm tonight!

2. Over at Cup o’ Porn, Keira and I talk about Five Fairy Tale Hunks we wouldn’t mind finding at the top of our beanstalks. Our post is pretty SFW, but the Cup o’ Porn site itself might be a wee bit riksy! It’s not called Cup o’ Porn for nothing!

3. Over at Sidney Bristol’s blog, I’m going on about the rabbit hole of writing research and the gift of the internet.

4. I was on Amelia Gormley’s blog discussing the inspiration behind Ascending Hearts, complete with some pictures!

5. Ascending Hearts is now available in the Kobo store and the Barnes & Noble Nook Book store.

In other news, I got mind-jacked by a new novel two days ago. It’s not good timing, but the entire thing showed up–characters, plot, settings, motivations, dialogue–absolutely everything. This never happens and so I feel like I’d be an idiot not to follow through. If I’m diligent and lucky I might be able to have a first draft done within two months and then get back on track with my plan for the year.

Writer Wednesday: Amber Skyze and Katalina Leon

About Writer Wednesday: a couple of Wednesdays per month I hope to feature another writer and their work. Any writer of any genre is welcome to request participation by sending an email to leta.blake.author@gmail.com with the subject title WRITER WEDNESDAY COUNT ME IN! and I will get back to you about the details of participation.

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1. Can you tell us a little about The Strix? What should readers know that makes it a compelling and different read?
Katalina: Writing this book was a very special experience for me and resulted in quite a few surprises and firsts. This was my first NANOWRIMO project. This was my first time co-authoring a book series. This was my first book partially channeled by a dead friend and this is my first book with Loose Id Publishing.
The Bag Of Tricks book series was the first time I truly collaborated with another author. The series was Amber’s idea based on her annual trips to Salem Massachusetts and the fun of visiting a Wiccan shop with girlfriends and having fortunes told. The wish bag filled with magical stones was her idea. When I was a young and single I would have found the idea of seeking out a little magical guidance to see if I was going to be lucky in love pretty irresistible. Amber came up with idea of four girlfriends in their early thirties who were close in college, reuniting for a Halloween weekend in Salem. Each heroine chooses a wish stone from the bag and has her fortune told. What the girls don’t know is the moment they make a wish they fall under some heavy enchantment and their lives become rocket ship rides of unexpected adventure. Of course every story is also populated with gorgeous supernatural men.
In The Strix Arcona enters a parallel world. She’s an innocent historical researcher in her current lifetime but she once was a strong spirited and desperate Celtic captive of Rome in 78 AD, who practiced dark witchcraft. She comes face to face with that lifetime and a man she should have loved but instead abused. Tyr was a condemned gladiator who loved Arcona and wanted to buy her freedom but ended up being turned into an immortal flesh and blood weapon with a badly damaged soul. After two thousand years of heartless misery as a Slayer dedicated to the gods of war Tyr has had enough and wants it all to end. Meeting the reincarnation of the original Arcona in Salem is Tyr’s sole opportunity to be free of the Slayer’s curse. He kidnaps Arcona intent on breaking the curse and dragging Arcona into death with him, but they’re hard start quickly turns into something more complex and tender as old memories and motivations rush forward. For the first time in two thousand years Tyr begins to feel love again and his plans change drastically.
2. You co-wrote the book. Is this your first time co-writing? How was that experience different from writing alone?
Amber: Yes, this book was the first time co-authoring. I love Kat as an author and a person, so it was very easy to write these books.
Katalina: I actually wrote The Strix. Amber was so supportive and pro-active about showing my partial to a new-to-me publisher that I was very grateful for her help and patient ear. The next book in the series Claimed By Dragons is a true collaboration that both of us wrote together.
3. How did you go about the world-building in your novel? Did you work it all out before hand with a computer or in a notebook?
Katalina: I emailed Amber about fifty times a day to run ideas past her as we worked together to create the details of this world.
4. You have written many books over the years. Is there any book in particular that is very close to your heart? Do you have a book that you wish others loved as much as you do?
Amber: Splashing Good Time…it’s a quickie from Ellora’s Cave. I love the characters in that book, the setting, especially Nathan the hero.
5. What about Katalina’s books–is there a particular favorite of yours amongst her back catalogue?
Amber: I love all her books, but my all-time favorite, aside from The Strix is Owned By Rome.
6. Where can people find you and Katalina (and your books) online?
You can find The Strix at Loose Id LLCAll Romance eBooks, and Amazon. You can find Katalina’s work at  Ellora’s Cave Publishing,
Sony, Smashwords, Kobo, Fictionwise, Diesel and many more.
Amber around the web: www.amberskyze.com and http://amberskyze.blogspot.com