Posts Tagged 'Paranormal Lesbian Romance'

Why the Wolfpack?

BY JENNY FRAME

Heart of the PackAs I was pulling together some ideas for my new book, Heart Of The Pack, a friend asked me why I was so interested in wolves as a theme, why the Wolfpack? She had noticed my social media regularly featured wolf pictures, and werewolf posts and quotes. When I thought about it, as much as I find the wild wolf beautiful, I really think it’s the mythology of the werewolf that speaks to me.

I only discovered paranormal romance a few years ago. The vampire mythology was good but it never really hooked me in the way werewolves do. Werewolf mythology, which has grown over time in books and TV, seems to fit naturally into the romance genre.

So why does it seem so attractive to me, and countless others? Here are my thoughts…

  • Mate for life – I think this is the biggest and most attractive rule of wolf fiction. What woman wouldn’t find the concept of mating for life utterly romantic? To live in certain knowledge that your chosen mate is destined to be by your side until death, so different from the reality of real life. That’s what romance fiction is all about to me, an escape from real life into a world of fairy tales and happy ever afters.
  • Pack hierarchy – In the strict regime of a wolfpack everyone has a role and knows their place. To most that strict regime would be restrictive and suffocating, but to some it can bring comfort and certainty. As someone who has is introverted and doesn’t like change, I can easily understand the attraction to that kind social structure.
  • Non-traditional gender roles – This is something that has featured, and grown up in lesbian paranormal romance, and something I have tried to take a bit further in my book.

Each writer tackles this in their own unique way. In my world of Wolfgang County, each wolf is categorized not by the sex they are born in, but by the natural programming they display as youngsters to be either dominant or submissive. This allows the characters to be who they were truly born to be, a philosophy that I think would be truly wonderful if our human society could come to terms with it.

  • The Pack, the family – We all have a need to belong. Whether we have a wonderful family, or a dysfunctional family, there are times in life when we all feel alone. How wonderful would it be if the town where you lived and everyone in it looked at you as if they were your pack, your family? You would never have a reason to feel alone and you would always have people who would laugh with you, mourn with you, protect you, and love you, and that’s exactly what the pack gives you. I for one believe that would be a wonderful feeling.

Imagine then a human walking into this alien world? That’s exactly what my protagonist does in Heart of the Pack. Selena Miller is a human who is extremely introverted, suffers with anxiety and body image issues, brought on by a critical, controlling and overbearing family. How could someone like this find freedom in a werewolf pack?

Firstly in contrast to her rich superficial upbringing, where people married for money or position, the citizens of Wolfgang County, mate for life with the one who their heart yearns for. They prize their mate and their offspring above anything, enjoying a simple life of loving and playing with their children, something that is far removed from Selena’s childhood.

Despite the apparent rigidity of the Wolfgang’s community, they do nature and support the natural talent an individual has. Lifting them higher and not judging them. This follows into the concept of non-traditional gender roles.

Selena has always been forced to by family expectations to work in the high powered, Alpha male/female business world, and all she has ever wanted was to be a teacher. What she finds in the Wolfgang world is that everyone is allowed and encouraged to follow their natural inclinations and talents, whether that be a tough ranch hand, a teacher or a stay at home mom.

It’s only when she enters this world and meets the extremely confident pack Second, Caden that she begins to see new possibilities for her life. The book is not only a love story between the two lead characters, it’s also a story about a human falling in love with a community and a way of life, and finding her place in the Heart of the Pack. I suppose this mirrors my own love for werewolf mythology and my belief that we all have a lot to learn from the Wolfpack.

What do you do with a lovesick dragon horse?

BY D. JACKSON LEIGH

Tracker and the Spy 300 DPIFor those who joined me on the Dragon Horse War journey when “The Calling” debuted a year ago, the trilogy continues this month with the release of “Tracker and the Spy.” 

“The Calling”  told the story of First Warrior Jael who was ordered by The Collective Council to assemble an army of dragon horse warriors and stop The Natural Order, a dangerous cult gaining ground in their society.

The cult is a retro movement – not in a groovy 60s kind of way — that promotes belief in a single deity who has a propensity for torturing any souls who don’t worship him and declares men as master over the perpetual source of new human life, namely women. The cult’s leader, who calls himself The Prophet, isn’t a live-and-let-live kind of guy and intends to force the rest of humanity to conform to his belief by taking control of the world’s dwindling food supply. So far, his plan is working.

Jael’s mission, of course, catches a little bad air when she falls head over heels for her direct opposite, First Advocate Alyssa, a peace-loving empath. Alyssa has issues with Jael’s mission to prematurely cremate (as in before he’s dead) The Prophet so that his badly born soul will be purified to reincarnate and make restitution in his next life for his misdeeds in this life.

“The Calling” ends just after the Jael’s army of flying pyros concludes Dragon Horse War The Calling 300 DPIits first clash with The Natural Order. The dragon-horse warriors scatter The Natural Order believers in that first battle, but The Prophet and his second-in-command escape.

No problem.

Capt. Tanisha, one of the six warriors of the elite Guard who are Jael’s command staff, is an expert tracker. It’s just that Tan has a few quirks, a few guilt and anger issues left over from her previous lives. So, Jael assigns Kyle to help the complex and solitary Tan in her hunt for The Prophet.

That is a bit of a problem.

Kyle is an exceedingly powerful, but untrained pyro who just happens to be the daughter of The Prophet. She’s just joined the dragon horse army after escaping from her father and wants no part of Jael’s plan to return her to The Natural Order as a spy.

Also, Tan’s even more twitchy than usual because her dragon horse  has picked this inopportune time to get the urge to mate. Since warrior and dragon horse are bonded, Phyrrhos’ urgent need for love is driving Tan crazy with lust. The last thing she needs is to be distracted by an untrained sparkler – especially one with a hot body with eyes as blue as lasers – while she’s tracking.

But Jael pulls rank and orders the tracker and the spy partnership.

Then, when things can’t get any worse, Phyrrhos decides Jael’s dragon stallion, Specter is prime daddy material. Specter is willing, which drives Jael a little crazy.

That lights the First Advocate’s candle because she’s laid claim to the First Warrior’s sexy assets and isn’t about to let two horny dragon horses trigger a rerun of Tan’s and Jael’s former “friends with benefits” relationship.

Then there’s Phyrrhos’ sudden and baffling affection for Kyle – not in a mating, but in a motherly kind of way.

Sun and stars! This is no time for a meeting of the mile-high club. The Prophet and his henchmen are getting away.

 

Totally didn’t see this coming

I’ve always been a “plotter” rather than a “pantser.” Translation: I write from an outline because my writing time is jammed in around a full time job, the chores of living and a little time with friends so they don’t forget who I am. So, an outline lets me put a manuscript down for a few days or even a few weeks and pick right back up where I left off.

The characters in the Dragon Horse War trilogy had other ideas. I started it as a lark because I had an unusual spate of weird dreams about dragons. Then it became my personal commentary on the decline of current society into a culture of hate and greed, and, to my own surprise, an introspective journey of discovery.

Best of all, the Dragon Horse War trilogy is a wild adventure of pyro-gifted warriors, flying horses, and the discovery of many other less fantastic gifts we humans didn’t know we could wield. The good guys have flaws, some of the bad guys have redeeming qualities and the story has lots of bumps along the way.

 

Back on track

Meanwhile, “Tracker and the Spy” is the longest manuscript I’ve ever written, because the misbehaving dragon horses is the only the spark – its real importance emerges later – that starts Tan’s and Kyle’s personal story and their mission to track down The Prophet.

There are battle scenes, tragedy, unanticipated developments and new characters to love and hate. There’s also personal discovery, romance …and a set-up for the third book to come.

That final book has yet to be written, and honestly, while I think I know how it will end, I can only say for sure that the characters will let me know.

Editor’s Note: If you leave a comment on this blog, you’ll get a chance to win a free autographed copy of “Tracker and the Spy”

 

  1. Jackson Leigh

2013 GCLS Paranormal winner for “Touch Me Gently”

2014 GCLS Romance winner for “Every Second Counts”

2014 Lambda finalist for “Hold Me Forever”

Five Things I learned from Comic Con

BY SHERI LEWIS WOHL

SLW-CC1

The invitation was quite unexpected and it took all of about three seconds to say “yes.” Would I consider coming to the Long Beach Comic Con to participate in a panel on LGBT issues in fiction? No need to ask twice, I booked my airline ticket, reserved my room at the historic Varden Hotel, and waited with great anticipation for the day to arrive. I was going to my first Comic Con.

Now given what I write you might wonder why it was my first one. Oh, I’ve wanted to go in the worst way and yet was always too chicken to make the venture. For me, the greatest risk I’ve taken is to write my books the way I want to write them and create the characters that make me happy. Everything else about my life is pretty conservative from the day job to the city I live in to my leisure-time activities. It’s simply the way I’ve always rolled.

Yet inside me is the wild woman longing to be set free. Lately I’ve been listening to that woman and slowly, she’s finding a bit of freedom. It probably started with my novels then moved to going out on a limb with some extra work on Z Nation. Then a play. Then dancing in a short film. And finally accepting the Comic Con invitation.

Walking up the steps to the entrance of the Long Beach Convention Center was a moment filled with joy that was also mixed with trepidation. I mean, let’s face it, I’m not a kid anymore and did I really belong there? Had this ship passed me by while I huddled beneath my conservative cloak pretending to the world that I didn’t want to be different? My answers were just inside the glass doors ahead of me. All I had to do was take a deep breath, open the doors, and walk inside.

And so I did. By the end of the first day, five things became very clear to me:

  1. You’re never too old to let your dreams soar. Comic Con isn’t just for kids. It speaks to every age, race, and gender. Dreams come alive inside those doors no matter who you are.
  2. You’re not alone. You might think you’re the only one who finds Steam Punk awesome but you’re not. You might think you’re the only one who believes Princess Leah is hot but you’re not.
  3. Live for the moment, you’ll not regret it. Joy is in the air the moment you step inside. Drink it in and let it nourish your soul.
  4. Be brave. Not everyone will understand why Comic Con is important to you. Walk through those doors anyway because inside are lots and lots of people who do.
  5. Top hats are cool. No explanation necessary…you either get it or you don’t!Twisted Whispers

Comic Con was an experience filled with things I never imagined. I met great people, witnessed incredible artistic talent at every turn, and was surrounded by positive creativity. As I now sit and write my stories of psychics, werewolves, vampires, and ghosts, I know without any reservation that out there in the world are those kindred spirits who get it and maybe, just maybe, I’ll see them again at the next Comic Con.

And next time…I’m wearing my top hat.

http://www.sherilewiswohl.com

Castle in the Clouds

By Sheri Lewis Wohl

Pacific Ocean

Pacific Ocean

 

I would like to say I’m your average, normal person. Lord knows I’ve tried. I’ve raised a family, worked in the same job for over two decades, volunteered in my community, and tried to be good and kind. For the most part, I think I succeeded. It’s just the normal part I keep tripping up on. If you’ve read any of my books, you’ve probably got an idea of what I mean. Few, if any, who know me well would use Sheri and normal in the same sentence!

Take writing, for example, I’ve tried to write straight-forward books filled with danger and intrigue. Oh, I get the danger and intrigue all right but something else always creeps in: the paranormal. It doesn’t matter how I start out. It doesn’t matter what my intentions are. Each and every time here comes a ghost, a vampire, a werewolf, and many others of preternatural ilk. I can try not to write paranormal and I fail miserably. Perhaps it’s a little like Carl Sagan once said: “Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere.” Take away my preternatural characters and suddenly, I’m nowhere.

Becoming yourself. Finding your voice. Embracing what and who you are is a difficult thing. It’s taken me a very long time to look in the mirror and like who I see. It’s taken me just as long to find peace with my artistic endeavors. Fear is a terrible thing and I lived it for so very long. Not a single day more. Though I know it was a process years in the making it seems as though I simply woke up one day and was comfortable in my own skin. I didn’t have to compete with anyone. Didn’t have to be younger, prettier, more talented. I didn’t have to be normal! Some people will like me. Some people will not. Some people will like my work. Some people will not. And, it’s all okay. I have found my place and though it’s miles away from what many consider normal, it is my space to imagine the impossible, dance like no one’s looking, and stand on center stage to perform.

As Gilbert K. Chesterton said, “There are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds.” In Twisted EchoesTwisted_Echoes_300_DPI it’s more a castle on the ocean shores but the sentiment is still the same. On a road trip a few years back I stood alongside the highway staring out at the mighty Pacific Ocean and I could see it all in my head: The house, the ghosts, the psychic. Did anyone else with me see those images? Nope, not a single one. It didn’t matter a bit for I was building my castle in the clouds that blustery day and you can count on me to keep doing just that.

Alone in the dark: A mountain & my muse

BY SHERI LEWIS WOHL

Sheri Werewolf

Sheri Werewolf

 

The air is turning cold and the only light is a sliver of moonlight filtering through the towering pines. A small stream flows past like a whisper while off in the distance the crack of a branch snapping makes me jump. Inside the flaps of the dark green tarp strung between two trees, I lay on the hard ground huddled inside my sleeping bag. On the side of the mountain, I’m alone. Well, not technically all alone, there are others tucked inside their own makeshift shelters scattered throughout the wooded mountainside. But here near the swiftly moving stream, I’m by myself. It’s the perfect mood setting for a paranormal writer.

But, I wasn’t there as a writer. No, I came to the mountain that particular night to participate in an overnight mock search and rescue exercise. As a member of a K9 search and rescue team called out by the Sheriff’s Department where I live, we periodically converge to run through search scenarios and keep our skills sharp. This was a particularly interesting exercise for it was held on Halloween weekend. As I was running a half-marathon earlier in the day, I got to the mountain after the teams had been deployed. Rather than act as a searcher in this one, I had a different job. I was one of the “lost” persons the teams had to find. Except this time, in this exercise, those lost were a little more than lost…we were preternatural as well. There was one Skeleton, one demon, and me…a werewolf!

The search exercise was a rousing success and not only did we learn a great deal, but we had fun too. Though it was deep darkness on the side of that mountain by the time the searchers located me, when their lights hit my face, their reactions were priceless. The searchers, you see, weren’t in on the unique nature of the lost that night.

I came to the exercise that night loving the idea of being a lost werewolf but also pleased to be able to utilize the skills I’ve spent so much time learning and refining. The search and rescue community is a wonderful group to be associated with and the support of law enforcement in our area, incredible. This night though, it gave me even more. Think about it: a paranormal writer alone on the side of a mountain dressed like a werewolf? Oh yeah, I’m talking imagination nirvana!

The next morning as we packed out many were cold and tired, not having slept well in their shelters. It was cold and a light snow had begun to fall. It didn’t dampen my mood, I was grinning. My shelter had been great, I’d remembered to charge my radio, and my GPS had worked perfectly. Best of all, my muse shared the little shelter with me that night and when I hiked out, my head was filled stories of things that go bump in the night. I could hardly wait to get home to my computer.

Every writer is asked one question again and again – “Where do you get your ideas from?” For me on that Halloween weekend they came from inside a green tarp on the side of a mountain.

Vermilion Justice 300 DPI

BOLD STROKES BOOKS INTERVIEW with AUTHOR TANAI WALKER

by Connie Ward

TanaiWalkerLg

What made you decide to become a fiction writer?

I have wanted to be I writer since I was fifteen. I was always an avid reader, and once I read The Stand by Stephen King, I was so transfixed by the plot and the characters that I wrote my own novel during the summer. It was eighty pages long, and it was about an alien conspiracy in a small desert town that is uncovered by a group of teenaged girls.

 

What type of stories do you write?  And why?

I write a mix of horror, paranormal, spec, and urban fantasy. I have always been attracted to the dark side of existence, the macabre and the grotesque. I grew up watching Alfred Hitchcock and The Twilight Zone with my mother, and horror movies with my dad. My grandmother used to tell me real-life ghost stories of her experiences growing up on old plantation land populated by the spirits of slaves. You could say these stories are in my blood, and in a way I am retelling them to as many people as will listen.

 

What do your family/friends think about your writing?

 My mom and dad are very doting parents. They indulged anything my siblings and I ever showed an interest in. They will never admit it, but my early writing habits worried them, especially my mother. I would lock myself in my room for hours, before school and after, and write these weird stories. My dad was my first editor and actually taught me how to outline. So my dad saved me from being a pantser. I have three sisters and two brothers, who are all very supportive. We are all major fan geeks, and we argue over the plot and the actions of characters all the time. I always have a ton of experts to run ideas by. My little brother Terrence is always trying to force ideas on me.

My partner Janette is the perfect writer’s spouse. She loves all of my stories and my blog and just about anything else I do. Right now, she is my biggest fan.

Where do you get your ideas?

My novelSacred Fire Sacred Fire 300 DPI came to life when I came across a picture on the Internet of an antique erotic postcard. I wondered what would happen if I saw the woman walking around today in regular clothes. The rest of the story sprang from that little seedling-idea. I also like to read true-crime and true-occult books. Colin Wilson’s The Occult, which I read in high school, has probably supplied me with enough spooky material for a lifetime. I am also big on reading mythology. A lot of our stories and modern archetypes of characters are recycled legends and myths that were told over the hearth back when people were afraid to venture outdoors at night. I like to tap in to those old stories. They are so meant for retelling.

 

How do you write; do you plan everything out or just write?

I started off as a pantser, but my dad taught me how to outline. I would use index cards to write down all the scenes that I wanted in my book. I would then spread out all of them on my bedroom floor and group them into chapters. Now I use Scrivener to organize my scenes and chapters.

What makes Sacred Fire special to you?

It took me three years to write this book. It just would not gel right for the longest time. Since I was fifteen I have written a dozen books. Each time I started a new book, I would tell myself: “This is the one that’s going to get published.” It was probably a little foolhardy of me, but I’d been bitten by the bug. Somehow the feeling was strong with Sacred Fire. I think it took so long to write because I wanted it to be just right.

How much of yourself and the people you know are in your characters?

My characters tend to be independent and reserved, but that is as far as I go about putting myself in my stories. I am currently working on a series, and I have written in my youngest sister as a conspiracy theorist.

 

Which gay/lesbian authors inspired you the most?  Do you have a favorite

of this author(s)?

The lesbian authors that have most inspired me are Jordan Redhawk and Nene Adams. I used to read their online stuff when I was in high school and could not have lesbian literature lying around. I was so thrilled to meet Redhawk at the GCLS con. My life’s dream is to meet Nene Adams.

My favorite authors are Joyce Carol Oates, Stephen King, and Toni Morrison, to name a few.

 

Do you have any suggestions for new writers?

Never give up. If you have an idea, write a draft. If you have a draft, get some friends to read it. Write it again until you get it just right. You never know when your break will come. You want to be ready.

 

When you’re not writing what do you do for fun?

 I have three dogs, and they are always good for a bit of free fun. I’m a bit of a gamer. My console of choice is the Sony Playstation 3, and I am hoping to get the 4 this summer. I play DC Universe and the Elder Scrolls series. My partner and I love going to the movies.


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