Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sneak peek : Love Burns

I've handed in three stories in less than three weeks. I was supposed to be taking a break, but no. My characters won't leave me alone. And so, I wanted to give you a sneak peek of my new WIPs, work in progress. First up, is Love Burns. The final installment of the series featuring vampires Scorpio and Aria. This will be published by Cobblestone Press. The first two Love Bleeds and Love Bites are already available and can be purchased here.  Enjoy.

“What was that about,” Aria asked Scorpio at breakfast the next evening.
            He was sitting at the table, pretending to read the vampire newspaper when she asked her, seemingly innocent question.  Glancing over the pages at her, he viewed her tousled onyx hair, ebony skin, and dark eyes before returning his gaze to the periodical.
            “Last night, Scorpio. Why did Barista have to record us for the council?”
            Scorpio shuffled the page and moved it up slightly to hide his face. How could he tell her that the vampire council had given him living sperm and coerced him to make love to her in an attempt to get her pregnant? He couldn’t which was why he ignored that question too. Having none of it, Aria ripped the paper from his hands and tossed it over her shoulder. Damn, he thought, that turned him on. Picking up his goblet of blood, he swirled the red elixir around before taking a sip.
            “Just wanted to please you,” he said.
            Aria frowned at him. “Please me by having a three some with your mortal enemy? And what this about the council?”
            He sighed as he sat his goblet on the table.  “I can only tell you that we are being investigated by the council.”
            “Something to do with our union. They sent Barista to spy on us to make sure that we’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing.”
            “Which is?”
            Scorpio kissed her. “Making a lot of love.”
            She giggled. What he said was half of the truth. He did want to risk losing her by telling her the whole thing. Pulling her to his chest, he buried his nose in the curve of her neck and inhaled. Her scent was different, lighted. Did it work? Was she…It was too soon to know for sure. Aria leaned away from him and stood.

Monday, June 27, 2011

From the desk of R.W. Shannon: Motivation

From the desk of R.W. Shannon: Motivation: "I wish I could say that I get my messages from God or the universe from a voice or a vision, but I don’t. Instead, I get my messages from so..."


I wish I could say that I get my messages from God or the universe from a voice or a vision, but I don’t. Instead, I get my messages from song lyrics. Every morning, I wake up with a song in my head. Not the whole song, but a snippet of it. Yesterday, I awoke to the lyric “take time to realize,” from Colbie Caillat song Realize. Now, I’m not a fan of hers, so I’ve only heard that song at the grocery store. Plus, there was really no other reason for that lyric to be inside my soul unless it’s a lesson that I’m supposed to learn.
What I’ve notice over the years is that if I don’t learn that lesson, it repeats it’s self until I do. Before the ‘realize’ lesson, Motivation by Kelly Rowland was stuck in my head. Not the whole song on the lyric that goes, “baby, I’m gonna be your motivation.” That lyric stayed in my head for a week. What am I to be motivated about? Who is my motivation? I couldn’t get it. I still don’t until the ‘realize’ lyric.
You see, I’ve been stuck for a while. Things have happened that prevented me from taking even one step in the direction that I want to move it. It’s hard to do your life’s work when you can’t even afford to attend to your personal needs. So, I had to be creative. Since I can’t get a job right now to help me (believe me, I tried). I’ll have to do what I was born to do : write. But, it’s hard to be an eBook writer when you can’t afford to keep the internet turned on and have no gas to make a run to the library every week. (I live in the mountains so, I can’t even walk there.)
And that’s when it clicked. This space that I call being stuck is to be my motivation to get to the place I need to be. With the motivation, I need to realize what I have to offer and do that instead of trying to do something that I have no business doing.
This morning, I woke up to “somebody’s sleeping in my bed,” from Dru Hill. Since I’m single, unless there’s a ghost sleeping with me, it’s not literal. My guess is that the bed I’m supposed to be sleeping in is being occupied by someone who is not supposed to be there. Because of that, I’m going to have to be single until they finally get the hint and move. So, if that’s you, please get out of my spot so that I can finally get that song out of my head and lay down. Thank you.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Life Lesson : Humility

Ever feel like you’re on the verge of something great. That one shift of the wind is all that it’ll take to put you on the track to prominence?  This is when the universe tests if you’ve learned the art of humility, the quality of being modest or respectful.
I found that out the hard way a few years ago. I had prided myself on never having a broken bone. One day, I was reflecting on how happy I was to finally be moving from the place that I was living in at the time. I stepped off the bus wrong and, yes, sprained my ankle.
That wasn’t the worst part. On the second bus, as I was on my way to the ER, I ran into the guy that I was dating at the time. Did he get off the bus to help me? No.  I broke up with him the next day and he didn’t seem to understand why.
I’m reminded of this recently. No, I haven’t bragged about anything but I wonder if I’m applying this practice to EVERY area of my life.  Am I being respectful of what I already have? Why am I praying and asking and yelling about thing that the universe has already granted me?
One of my goals was that I had wanted to work from home. Recently, I looked up and realized that I was doing it. The problem: I forgot to mention that I’d need enough money to cover my bills. Slowly, I watched my saving account drain down to zero and now I wonder if maybe I’m doing this wrong…
But, maybe I’m not. Maybe I’m being challenged to see if I will still be humble of this change when things get rough. Am I willing to stay the course and ride out the storm or will I abandon ship and immediately find another job, when that’s not what I asked for?

Silver Moon - Out Now! (excerpt)

My new release, Silver Moon, is now available from Cobblestone Press. The book follows Sabra, a werewolf, as she's required to choose a mate at the upcoming Silver Moon festival.

Here's an excerpt:

Sabra stooped in order to enter her grandfather’s teepee. The room was easier to enter in wolf form, but she didn’t have time to shift because she had to be back at her office right after the meeting. Besides, she wouldn’t want to shift back into her human form. She’d want to go out onto her grandfather’s property and run, but patients were waiting for her. With an exhale, she sat on a pillow and folded her legs beneath her.

The interior of the triangle-shaped structure was large, though it didn’t look like it from the outside. There was plenty of room for a wolf to roam. A low table sat to her left. On it was his special hand-carved pipe along with three stacks books and several stacks of papers. She shook her head at her grandfather’s messiness, but didn’t complain as she was the same way. A large fire pit took up the center of the floor. Other than a few animal hide pillows that littered the ground around the fire, her grandmother’s contribution, there was no other furniture.

With a nervous shudder, Sabra inhaled the scent of sage leaves that burned in a bowl next to the fire. The leather walls trapped the heat inside and made the room warm and cozy. This was his meeting hut. Her grandparents’ main home was miles away from here, but similarly decorated. She already knew what this meeting was about and wasn’t looking forward to it.

Her grandfather, Chief Black Moon, entered in his wolf form, then stalked around the space. His large body took up much of the area. His beautiful white coat glistened in the firelight as he playfully sniffed her cheek before taking a seat next her. As he sat, he shifted back into his human form. Orange flames now danced off of his dark brown skin and reflected in his brown irises.

He wrapped himself in a hand-woven blanket alive with the red, silver, and black colors of their pack, also her grandmother’s contribution. With a wink in her direction, her grandmother, Black River, poured him a cup of tea before shifting into her brown wolf and leaving the teepee. Sabra inhaled his earthy scent and waited for him to take his first sip of tea before the meeting began. She closed her eyes. The warmth of the space and her grandfather was comforting.

The parents of she and her four brothers were killed by hunters who accused them, falsely, of stealing their cattle. Sabra was only six at the time. Since then, they had been raised by their grandparents. While strict, her grandparents also knew when to remove the leashes and allow them to explore both their wolf and human sides. She loved him so. It upset her that, of all the supernatural species, theirs was not offered immortality—but they did live long lives. She didn’t know what she was going to do when it was their time to go. She didn’t want to think of it now.

The Chief was a healthy, youthful-looking seventy years old. His hair hung in silver dreadlocks that flowed over his muscular shoulders and down his back. She watched his weathered face as he drank his tea. He carefully set the mug on the floor and folded his hands in his lap. Before he could speak, she held up her hand.

“I already know what this is about. It’s time for me to mate.”

She’d been dreading this day since she turned twenty eight months ago. All of her friends had already been chosen. Even her four younger brothers were married and starting their families. She was behind as far as the other members of her pack were concerned, but she was busy with her career as a dentist. Black Moon opened his mouth, but before he could utter any words, she interrupted him again as she leapt to her feet and stalked around the space.

The Silver Moon festival coincided with the first full moon of the new year. At the festival, the male werewolves publicly declared their mate in front of the pack. She wasn’t a piece of meat, which was why she’d avoided the festival like a plague. But now, she couldn’t use her studies or career as an excuse to not go anymore. Her pack was counting on her as the lone alpha female to breed more Alphas. She cringed.
“It’s not fair!” she exploded. “It’s a sexist, archaic system, Grandfather. Why do I have to be mated? I’ve graduated college. I have a career. My own home. I don’t have room or time for a mate.”


She continued ranting as if she hadn’t heard him. “And what makes matters worse is that I don’t even have the right to choose! The male does all the choosing. What if I don’t like him? What if he’s a complete idiot?”
He chuckled. This enraged her further. She turned to him but softened her posture at the twinkle in his eyes. Of course she was being melodramatic, but she was trying to make her point. Maybe she could put it off for a few more years. No. The elders of her pack, including her grandmother, were already sending her daily emails with offers to set her up with one wolf or another. The sooner she got this over with, the better.
“It’s not funny! I know things worked out with you and Grandmother, but this is a different century. It’s time for this practice to die.”

“I agree.”

His quiet statement made her pause. He patted the pillow next to him and waited patiently for her to sit down. After she did, he took her hand. She found herself beginning to calm down as she picked up her mug with her free hand and held it while she waited for her grandfather to speak. Instead of his messiness, she wished she’d inherited his ability to remain calm in the middle of a storm.

“When it’s my time to pass, you’ll be Alpha of the pack. Your mate needs to be strong, confident and able to assist you with your duties.”

“But that’s a long time off,” she whispered.

“Perhaps, but I like to be prepared for anything.”

“That’s what made you a great warrior.”

Squeezing his hand, Sabra laid her head on his strong shoulder. She would love to find a mate like him, but most wolves were jerks. If it weren’t frowned upon, she’d much rather mate with a human. But as Alpha, she’d be expected to breed as soon as she was mated. She shuddered at the thought—she wasn’t ready for kids. At this point in time, she was barely ready for a mate.

“This,” her grandfather continued as he laid he cheek on top of her head, “is why I will bend the rules. Your mate must be equal to you and not want to be with you simply because of your status.”

“I’ll make sure that won’t happen,” she said as she sat her mug on the table.

“As will I.”

“You’re really going to let me choose?”


This made her feel a little better about the situation, but not much. At least her grandfather had her back. Now, she’d just have to find someone worthy of him, and her. She exhaled. That was going to be the hard part. However, this was going to rock her pack’s world when they got wind of what her grandfather proposed.

“What about the elders?”

“They understand my wishes and have agreed with me.” He wrapped his arm around her shoulder. “Do you have a mate in mind?”

Sitting up, she shook her head. “No. I’ve been too busy to look.”

“There’s plenty of time. You’ll know when you meet him.”

He brushed a strand of hair from her forehead. The festival was less than two weeks away. She didn’t even have any prospects to choose from. There was still time to try online dating, but there wasn’t a site for werewolves, and she couldn’t very well put that piece of information in a public profile. Sabra worried that she wouldn’t meet anyone suitable. After her last miserable date two months ago, she’d given up on even looking for a mate. Worry nagged at her. What was she going to do?

Her grandmother appeared with a plate piled with steaming hot corn cakes slathered in butter. Sabra’s mouth watered as she snagged one from the plate and bit into it. She moaned and wished her grandmother would teach her how to cook. Black River refused until Sabra found a mate. After wrapping herself in a throw, her grandmother sat on the other side of her. Sabra’s breath stilled as she sensed a set-up coming.

“When you least expect it,” her grandmother cooed, then kissed Sabra’s forehead, “he’ll show up. The universe just wants to make sure your heart is ready to receive the love it wants to send you.”

“Maybe. But the universe is cutting it pretty close.”

“Perhaps not. Maybe he simply wasn’t ready yet. Maybe he is now.”

Sabra stiffened at her grandmother’s mysterious comment. Aha! At least she was dressed appropriately in her work outfit—red blouse, black slacks and black pumps. She looked around as if her blind date was going to make an appearance at any minute, but relaxed when no one appeared. Doubt pestered her thoughts as she reached for another cake. Was she really that busy with her career to meet someone?

“What if I never find him?”

“You will. I have faith,” Chief Black Moon said.

Her grandfather stood. In one deft move, he stripped off his blanket and shifted back into his wolf. Her grandmother draped an arm around her shoulder. With a final kiss, she, too, stripped off her covering, shifted and followed her husband from the teepee. Admiration swept through her as she watched them. Would she ever find love like that? Climbing to her feet, she filed the thought into the back of her mind. She fished the keys to her SUV out of her coat pocket as she walked toward it. Right now, she’d just settle for a booty call.
Also, my other books; Pink Cashmere, Love Bites and Love Bleeds, are still available from them. And Nocturne, published by Beautiful Trouble Publishing, is still available from Amazon, Beautiful Trouble Publishing and All Romance eBooks.

I will have an exciting new series that will be excusively pubished through All Romance eBooks so. Please stary tuned for details...