Friday, May 31, 2013

He was so close....

"...I knew all it would take was his bite and I would be sailing on a forbidden ecstasy I could never reach with a human man. I wanted it. It was so close, and yet so elusive. It was like trying to touch a butterfly's wing, only to disintegrate before I could snatch it."

Vampire Ascending is dark and sexy with a touch of humor. I love how Lorelei has made the heroine a strong lead character. Sabrina Strong is a touch clairvoyant, meaning that when she touches an object or a person she can see into the past and future. It is because of this gift that she is hired by a master vampire to find out who killed his mate. Sabrina must also find out who took her best friend. With the help of the very sexy Dante ( a shape changer) she must set aside her fears to solve the mystery of the vampire killer and save her best friends life. ~portion of review by Vivienne Moss

My savior was a blood-drinking vampire, and that's what he'd probably been busy with when I'd called. I stifled my desire to bring this to his attention. Usually blood on the collar of a man might mean that he'd cut himself shaving. A vampire, on the other hand, blood on the collar would carry a whole different meaning all together.
I'm sorry to be such a pest,” I apologized, sliding my chilled feet beneath the covers and pulled my knees up to my chest, hugging them to myself.
You are not a pest,” he said around a small chuckle. He settled on the edge of the bed beside me. Grasping the covers, he pulled them up to my neck. I realized I was shivering as I gazed at him, letting out little nervous gasps. The erotic overtones of having him in my room were not lost on me. I wondered what might happen, since I had invited him in—and he wasn't leaving.
You are cold,” he said, his face partially in shadow, the other half glowing in the light slanting in through my window. His pale skin was stark against his neatly-cut black hair, eyes, and brows.
I reached to turn on the light. He stopped me with his voice. “No. Leave it off . . . for now.”
I retracted my hand and settled it on top of the covers as I stared up at him.
You are a temptation to me, Sabrina.” His voice was low, vibrating in my ears in a way that perhaps a cello might. Calm, sedate, and yet with the promise of something wonderfully exciting, and something wicked hidden beneath the beauty of this other worldly creature here in my room. I could hardly believe it was happening. But it was.
His chilly fingers feathered over my brow, moving strands of my hair away from my cheeks. Those same fingers slid down my cheek to the side of my neck, and paused at the pulse there at the jugular. My eyes slipped shut. Was he using his vampire charms on me to seduce me?
He released a breath.
Opening my eyes, I found he studied me in the dark, his hands slipping across the edge of my nightgown at the ties of the neck. I felt him loosen it, and spread the material open, availing my neck and the upper portion of my chest to him. My breath caught in me.
Are you going to kiss me?”
Yes.” He leaned in. “Do not move,” he whispered. His breath slipped over my skin as his head dipped down and I somehow not only held still but held my breath.
The face hovered over me . . . long, wavy black hair cascading down . . . I saw his face, stark against the black of his hair as he bit me on the arm . . . I thought he was the most elegant-looking man I had ever seen. Vampire Ascending © 2010 Lorelei Bell

Monday, May 27, 2013

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Chronicles of Zofia Trickenbod, sorceress

No one would guess that Gladstone, Illinois would be the home of a sorceress, her children and aunt from another planet. But I'm here to tell you it's true! I've seen and heard plenty and this is what I know.

ZofiaTrickenbod had no choice but to leave her beloved planet in order to keep herself, family and the Stone of Irdisi safe and out of the hands of the evil sorcerer, Vesselvod Blood. She and her Aunt Tillie came to a planet where they could not use their magic openly. Think of Samantha Stevens of Bewitched, and you get the idea.

Her daughter, Blanche, who is going to turn 16 soon, has adapted well, but wants to fit in, like all teens do, and to the shagrin of her mother wears very little in the way of clothing. On their planet, they wear full dresses, petticotes and so on--something in the way of our 16th century, or there abouts.

Her son, Elton--who they had named Eltony, but had to change it so that he wouldn't be teased--is constantly told to not talk about the magical things that they can do, such as float a platter of meat over to the end of the table, or float themselves, for that matter. Blanch is hoping to be able to disappear and reappear at will--it skips a generation, you know.

And then there is Biddle--the strangest being of the whole family (aside from the demon in the mirror, but that's a different kettle of fish). Biddle is the family servant. You can't see Biddle because he's invisible, a ghogal who is committed to the family for all his existance--which is like forever. Although once in a while he might become cantankerous and do something irresponsible like jinx the door bell which will give people who use it a bit of a shock, and laughs about it.

What sorceress wouldn't be without her feline helpers? Well, Perth and Argyll may look like cats, but they're not, I'm here to tell ya. They're Frisian warriors who were turned into cats to prevent them from snacking on the good people of Euphoria. Yes, they were cannibals, and the Imortals of their planet saw fit to turn them into domesticated animals for the good of their planet. Perth and Argyll are Zofia's protectors, and when she feels threatened enough, she may just turn them back into warrior women. Oh! I shudder to think of it!

Then there is Zofia's nosy neighbor Lolly. Lolly has been known to call the police on Zofia for the smallest things, and today would not be any different when she spies a strange man walk up to Zofia's door, knock and is let inside. Of course she wouldn't know that the stranger was Zofia's husband who has been missing for five long years. Of course Zofia knows enough to keep the real truth behind zipped lips. Dorian is not exactly human any more. He's not even a living person. He's actually (dare we say it?), a vampire.

Well, I've run out of time, my pretties, looking at the clock on the wall. If you see a couple of cats chasing a small white dog (Lolly's) down the street, don't worry. The cats won't hurt him. Much.

Spell of the Black Unicorn available here

Zofia Trickenbod is about to save her planet from the dark
ex-wizard, Vesselvod Blood... whether she wants to or not!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Spell of the Black Unicorn Rides Again!

After some sort of crazy snafu with trying to get my book published, after something like 2 days of frustration, and then finally my formatter and very good buddy, Mr. John Gill was able to go in and hit that button that selected category and it finally worked! He went ahead and got the book up and going (live). I'd wanted the price to be at $3.99. However, and for TODAY ONLY Spell of the Black Unicorn is .99!!!

Below is the first full chapter of book. Enjoy!!!!

Since I didn't have a question this week (oh, boy have I been busy!)... I'm about to make a page here on facebook for the new book of my other series. I have yet to come up with a series name for it. But I wanted to give you all a heads up. This is a new edited version of "Spell of the Black Unicorn", from the original book of same name that came out in 2008. This is the cover. Any one interested in following it, I'll post a link to the page here, and invite as many as I can to come and "like" it.


Mistress Zofia!”
The peevish voice jolted Zofia out of the dream she was having. She sat bolt upright and gulped in air. The gray of pre-dawn on First World met her eyes. She was in her own four-poster bed. Thank goddess, just a bad dream.
What? Who’s sick?” She expected to see her sixteen-year-old daughter, Blanche, or her eleven-year-old son, Elton, or her Aunt Tillie, standing over her. But as Zofia’s vision cleared, she saw no one was in the room with her. Whose voice had pulled her out of deep slumber?
Looking beyond the pencil posts of her bed, Zofia spied the highboy where a large brown fur-ball lay on top. Turquoise eyes scrutinized her. It was Argyll, one of her two guardian cats. Argyll sent Zofia a disgruntled look, but then her eyes fell shut and her head sank back down. So, it wasn’t either of her cats calling to her.
Someone’s at the front door ringing the bell, and it’s giving me a h-h-headache,” the detached, slightly willowy male voice moaned.
Oh, all right, Biddle. Really!” Zofia grumbled. Throwing off the covers, she swung her long legs over the edge of the bed. She had to shake the cobwebs from her head before straightening to her full, barefooted height of five-seven.
Her gaze cut to the clock on her nightstand. A quarter past five in the morning. No wonder she couldn’t get her eyes open all the way. Who would be ringing her doorbell at this hour? Damn Ugwump salesman probably. If they couldn’t snag you via the phone, they came to your door. Well, she’d take care of him. One little zap to his ass would make him take off. Or better yet, maybe a good scare would keep him from coming back, and she wouldn’t have to open the door at all.
You’re a Ghogal, Biddle,” she snarled. “You should’ve at least seen who it was before bothering me.”
I don’t do doors,” the detached voice retorted haughtily. No wonder she hadn’t seen anyone there. It had been Biddle, her Ghogal, and he was very much invisible.
Grabbing the silky powder-blue robe at the end of the bed, Zofia pulled it on hastily as she charged into the hallway. The peal of the door chimes grated her ears as much as it did anyone's. Biddle was her servant, a returned invisible spirit, and was capable of carrying out many physical tasks for their chosen masters. Nearly every wizarding family had one on Euphoria, and Biddle had been in her family for generations, so naturally he had come with her when she had made her exodus from Euphoria to First World. Many of the Ugwump inventions here either stumped or frightened him—including the dishwasher. But the doorbell aggravated him.
Zofia swiped a wild veil of wavy sienna hair out of her face. Probably look like someone has taken an egg beater to my hair. She Transvected—levitated—out of her bedroom and down the hall toward the staircase. Darting out from beneath her dangling feet, two large, tawny, furry bodies surged ahead of her. Perth and Argyll dashed down the steps and waited at the entry, meowing impatiently before she could land barefooted on the cool slate floor.
A chill plunged down Zofia's spine as she approached the door. The memory of her dream crashed through her mind like a poltergeist in a glass shop. Why did she have this dream again after five long years of it abating? She now had dreamt it a sixth time in a fortnight. Was Vesselvod Blood near? Had he found her?
Heavy pounding on the door made her jump out of her thoughts.
Just a moment,” she said, and looked through the small wedge of glass in the door. The shadow of a tall, square-shouldered man stood there. But with his back toward her she couldn’t identify him. He wasn’t wearing a suit, so she knew he wasn’t a stupid Ugwump salesman. It certainly wasn’t Richard Keys, who was much taller, and more robust. Besides, this man had shoulder-length black hair. Whoever he was, from this angle, the guy looked interesting.
Who’s there?” she asked.
The man turned to face the door. He shook the wild mane out of his dark, brooding, sapphire eyes and Zofia stared into a handsome face. She pulled in a gasp as instant recognition hit her hard like a troll’s fist to the noggin. He looked almost like he had the day he’d left her to go on assignment, five First World years ago; longish hair, and sideburns needed trimming. Even in this light she could see the slight bump on the bridge of his nose where it had been broken in a fight in his youth.
Zofia? It’s me, Dorian,” he said in a distinctive Ogenthow accent with a mellow, almost crooning voice. “Let me in, darling.”
Her heart gave a lurch. A multitude of emotions zipped through Zofia. She twisted the locks and yanked the heavy oak door open so frantically she broke a fingernail—oh hell... I'll mend it later. Their eyes met for the first time in five years. Zofia couldn’t believe he was standing there looking alive and fit as a Troll who'd eaten a whole village. Even so, she held off pulling him into a tight embrace. Mostly because all the warning bells were clanging in her head.
Zofia, I—” His gaze took in every inch of her like a man who’d not set eyes on a woman in a thousand Euphoria years. “How wonderful you look in that—” his hands gestured toward her. “You look like one of those women in a lingerie ad on Ugwump TV.”
Zofia had been holding her breath since opening the door, and now exhaled with her words, “I thought you were dead! I thought Blood had killed you!” She crossed her arms and glared at him, waiting for an explanation.
Well, yes he did—”
I saw it all in my dream the night you disappeared. That’s why I fled with the children.” The same dream I've been having, like last night.
I know,” Dorian said. He glanced over his shoulder, turned back to her and said, “I’ve not much time. Could you just invite me in? I’ll explain everything—”
I mourned for one hundred days, as required by the Code of Ethics. The children—” her voice broke with an emotional chirp. She averted her gaze. Embarrassed to show her emotions in front of Dorian she went on. “We couldn’t find your-your body so as to sever the head, a-and then burn the body so that a demon couldn’t take it over,” she strove on matter-of-factly, trying to regain control over those wild emotions, but it proved nearly impossible with the memories of what she'd gone through thinking he was dead.
That would’ve been a mistake,” he said low.
And now here you are!” Marshalling her emotions she said in a low, dangerous voice, “How dare you make us all go through that, and now here you are at my door after five years of nothing!”
I’m guessing you’re upset—”
Upset? Me?” she said, voice going up an octave. “If I were upset, you wouldn’t still be standing there.”
But, darling, you didn’t stay in Ogenthow long after that night. And I wasn’t myself, believe me, after what Blood did to me. Not only did I forget the attack, but once I remembered what had happened, you’d already left Euphoria. I learned you’d come here to First World in order to escape Blood. I then followed you to this low-brow burg called Gladstone ill.”
It’s not ill, it’s Illinois,” she corrected.
What? Oh—whatever,” he said, swiping the air dismissively with his hand. “Just let me in and I’ll explain everything.” Again he looked over his shoulder. “I don’t have much time, darling. Please?”
Why? Is someone following you?”
No. Not a who exactly. But the sun’s about up. Just let me in before I turn to dust.”
His words gave her pause. The dream. Blood had turned Dorian to dust in the dream. How odd he would use such a turn of phrase.
Finally giving him a dubious look she said, “You’d better have a good explanation for not being able to find us sooner than this.”
I do. I promise. Really.”
Gazing down at her cats she said, “What d’you think, girls? Should we let the lout in?”
A pair of slightly crossed aqua eyes gazed up at her. They both meowed. But Zofia was the only one able to hear them speak—a blessing from the Immortals.
It would make things interesting, wouldn’t it, sister?” Perth said.
Aye, it would, sister.” Argyll replied. “In a delicious way, I'm sure.”
Zofia looked up at Dorian and said, “Well, it’s unanimous.”
She stepped aside. But Dorian paused at the threshold without entering.
“Well? Didn’t you just beg me to come in?”
“Just indulge me for a second and ask me in,” he said, his voice going tight with agitation. Maybe a tinge of fear to it, too.
I can’t enter your house unless you invite me in.” His voice had phased back to its normal coolish note.
She rolled her eyes. “Okay, Dorian Grandier, come in.”
He rushed into the house, slammed the door behind himself, sprinted over to the windows, threw the thick curtains closed, then backed away from them.
Zofia frowned at his strange behavior. “What’re you afraid of?”
Panting, he turned. The white tips of his incisors peeked just below his upper lip. She studied his deep-set eyes, almost straight nose, and the strong jaw line. He looked blanched, as if he’d been living in a cave for years. Smudges beneath the eyes—which Zofia had not seen before this—made him look a little spooky. He seemed frightened. She could not remember a time when Dorian had ever been frightened of anything. After all, he was a Knight of the Witenagemont who went after wizards who walked on the dark side, Ogres with illegal stashes, demons, dangerous imps, illegal shape-shifters, vampires and Werewolves who stepped one toe out of the Oblast into the Province, all of them were thrown out, put into rehab, or incarcerated in Hamparzum’s, mostly thanks to him. His appearance both horrified and saddened her. This was not the Dorian and husband she knew.
Suddenly, both cats hissed vehemently. Backs arched, fur straight out, they both darted into the next room.
Dorian!” she said, backing away a few steps. The hairs on the nape of her neck prickled. She now wished she’d brought the Stone of Irdisi-loaded scepter with her for more protection. But, she hadn’t seen it in weeks and couldn’t remember what she’d done with the darn thing. “Dorian, explain yourself, before I put a hex on you!”
Bringing his hands up in a defensive move he said, “I—uh—” He cleared his throat. “I’ve been turned into a vampire.”
©2008 Lorelei Bell

Friday, May 17, 2013

Spell of the Black Unicorn & A Little Help from Friends

Back in the day, as a writer I had very little help, absolutely no feedback, except for when I was in a writer's critique circle-which was way long ago. Now, with the Internet, I'm connecting with other writers all over, and other people who can do things I simply cannot. You've got your beta readers, people who can do covers, and also someone to format the manuscript.

There's no way I could have gotten Spell of the Black Unicorn ready to put out as an ebook without my friends, and I'll name them here and give them all a shout out and have some links where you can find them.

Shelly Arkon is my awesome beta reader. I don't know how I could get a better one. I don't believe I could. I'm not sure if she rolled her eyes at my use of the word "peer" so many times in the manuscript, but yeah, it was one of my "crush" words. She often said something encouraging, telling me I was an awesome story teller. You can find this talented author here at Secondhand Shoes (also the name of her own book)

Since my novel was origninally published as a paperback in 2008, it sort of went by the wayside. I wanted to allow the story to see new light, because a lot of people bought and said nice things about it. It also needed a new cover. Something that looked interesting and that might give it the look of something trendy, with the fantasy undertones it needed, without looking too much like a children's book (or YA), which it is not. Well, answering the call for creating a great cover was my good friend Jeremy Hawkins. You can find Mr. Retro-Zombie at this site. Here is the cover, in case you've missed it.
Since I didn't have a question this week (oh, boy have I been busy!)... I'm about to make a page here on facebook for the new book of my other series. I have yet to come up with a series name for it. But I wanted to give you all a heads up. This is a new edited version of "Spell of the Black Unicorn", from the original book of same name that came out in 2008. This is the cover. Any one interested in following it, I'll post a link to the page here, and invite as many as I can to come and "like" it.

Isn't that a nice cover? It really caught me by surprise. I didn't know what Jeremy would have in mind when he said he could do this for me. We had to work on the lettering, a little to make it brigher, but it's perfect!

Now I don't know how many of you out there can format, or know what you're doing, but I've got no idea about it. Although I did format the original book for the publishers to put it out as a paperback, I had very good instructions (and still had to pay $400 for them to get it printed). So, I needed a formatter. I have a friend in Carole Gill, and she offered her husband, John's help in this area. His services are called White Rose Ebook Formatting. His service is straight forward and he's excellent. I highly recommend him. He also does book covers, and has helped me with a few of my short story covers. I had pictures, and he put in the lettering, got the correct size of the cover/picture and so forth. He was also able to up-load one for me, as I had trouble doing it. So, he's very reliable and flexible in what he can do for anyone in need of formatting and covers and so forth.
This weekend I will be getting the ebook to Amazon. Wish me luck. I was unable to get the high speed Internet service. It's too complicated to explain here. Suffice it to say I'm still on dial up. Yes. I'm as patient as a fool, I guess. I had a feeling I this was not going to work for me.

Hopefully the next post I will write will be where you can get your hands on the ebook copy of Spell of the Black Unicorn. Untill then, my friends!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Monday's Musings

Hello, my pretties!
Now that I'm into a summer session with my job, I've got Monday's off, and so I'm reintroducing Monday's Musings. I'll talk about whatever I'm doing or what's going on with me.

Still have not gotten my fast Internet connection solved as yet. I needed a different modem... I won't bore you with the details. I'm waiting on this in order to up-load my eBook Spell of the Black Unicorn--up-loading anything larger than a short story into Amazon through dial up would take forever. I don't want to chance that I loose the connection, but also it makes me too nervous. I don't think I'd survive the wait.

As you know I've a few other things in the works. Book #4 in the Sabrina Strong series, Vampire Caprice, is still in editing stages and I'm not rushing this process. Currently I'm writing book #7 Vampire Interlude. Although I've gotten over 20K words written, and 75 pages done, I'm at the thinking stage trying to come up with a good Crisis. Everyone seems to have a different word for this portion of the book. It has to be done in a way that keeps the reader hooked, but this is not the climax. The Crisis is in the middle of the book, you want to ramp things up with the main theme of problems and then a brand new one slaps your protag in the face and makes her life crazy/misserable/dangerous. She can't ignore the problem, and has to face it somehow.

So, that's where I'm at: Thinking.

Today, having it off, and having to go into town to pay a bill, I'm going to enjoy my day best I can, because tomorrow I have to drive the bus, and it's my least favorite route. As long as the crazies and problematic people don't ride I'll be fine. I'm hoping for a calmer summer this year.

Hope you had a great weekend/Mother's Day, and your week goes well. I hope to do another post in a day or so with news of the book's publication.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Zofia's Dream ~ "Spell of the Black Unicorn"

The book I am about to publish as an eBook "Spell of the Black Unicorn" took 5 years to write, create not only the characters, but their (fantasy) world, their individual coloquial words, belief systems, and yada yada. I wanted to have a story so solid that you BELIEVED in what you were reading.

The original paperback version (2008) had this dream smack dab in the very beginning--which is, as everyone knows, is a no-no. So this portion I'm sharing with you today is no longer part of the book (as an ebook).

Since I didn't have a question this week (oh, boy have I been busy!)... I'm about to make a page here on facebook for the new book of my other series. I have yet to come up with a series name for it. But I wanted to give you all a heads up. This is a new edited version of "Spell of the Black Unicorn", from the original book of same name that came out in 2008. This is the cover. Any one interested in following it, I'll post a link to the page here, and invite as many as I can to come and "like" it.

Chill bumps shrouded Zofia Trickenbod. She wanted to Transvect the hell out of here. But where to?
Zofia peered down into a deep chasm of copper, ocher and bronze cliffs from a dizzying height. At the very bottom of a V-shaped valley, brownish-green mud bubbled thickly like soup, and smelled like rotten eggs. At least now she knew what that smell was. Jagged tips of rocky spires and stone needles jutted up from the fumarole. She couldn’t be more lost if she’d stepped through a Portal. Well, maybe she had, she just couldn’t remember how she’d gotten here, wherever the hell here was. A crisp, cerulean-blue sky canopied this canyon of wind-carved rock while the huge scarlet disk of Antares, their sun, rode the sky like an exalted stoplight from First World.
Okay, wait just a troll minute! When did she arrive back on her own world, Euphoria? And why was she standing on this rock ledge with no way down pulling in sulfur fumes?
As if this place couldn’t get more exotic, just across from her standing majestically on a high precipice, was a black unicorn. His long mane, beard and tasseled tail billowed in the breeze like ebony flags. A deadly pointed and spiraled horn sprouted from his forehead.
Wait a minute. Unicorns are usually white. Aren’t they?
At least that’s what the Immortal Paradeep had always told her.
The unicorn pawed the earth nervously, sending a spray of loose rock down the bronze and tangerine cliff side. A mist rose and undulated slowly on the rocks in front of him as he tossed his head. Black eyes roved crazily at the phenomenon. He whinnied as though sensing the force wavering beside him. The smoky mist darkened and coalesced into something solid. A tall, thin man with sallow skin and a sharply chiseled face finally appeared. He looked like a vulture in need of a ripe corpse. Long, greasy ebony hair was pulled back off his expansive brow, falling in uneven lengths over narrow shoulders.
Zofia!” his voice issued across the chasm like a cracking whip smacking the air. Dagger-like brows slashed across his forehead. Coupled with an odd-looking, pencil-thin mustache, it gave him a formidable, somewhat mesmerizing look. But the eyes were his most prominent feature. Even though Zofia was not that close, she knew from past experience that the right eye was a glacially cool-blue, while the other was as black as a raven’s back. But both held a rapacious look in them as one brow plunged lower than the other, pinioning her. His deeply lined, age-spotted face betrayed his age. He was old, but not as old as many other wizards. She figured he could be around five hundred and fifty Euphoria years old, but no more than five hundred seventy-five, even though he was a third generation wizard. Unless she’d been drinking Merry Widow, she was pretty sure it was Vesselvod Blood standing right before her. In any case, she really didn’t want to be here now. But when she tried to use her Powers of Transvection to fly away, nothing happened. Dragon spit.
This wasn’t good. First the black unicorn, then Blood, and now her Powers had failed her. Could it get any worse? Of course Blood was the wizard who’d murdered her parents, and then came after her in search of the Stone of Irdisi when she was ten. Zofia had become the Stone’s Keeper after Blood had killed her mother, but she had not become the official Keeper until her seventeenth birthday. By that time, Blood’s Powers had been revoked by the Heathweian Council of Wizards and Immortals and sent into Hamparzum’s for the rest of his life. So, how could the ex-Dark Lord of Scyldings be out of Hamparzum’s and standing here?
Okay, Zofia take it easy, she told herself, the memory is first to go when you hit the forty mark. Blood had escaped Hamparzum’s Place of Darkness about five or so years ago. He had come looking for the Stone of Irdisi, which would give him unlimited powers.
I’ve been looking for you,” Blood hissed maliciously.
Me? Why?” she choked the words as though she’d swallowed dust from the parched earth.
You know why,” he said, his sardonic smile in place, his chest filling with a deep breath. “The Stone!” His one blue eye seemed to glimmer maliciously in the strange orangy sunlight. He held a long, black scepter and wore the black robes of his clan, the Karballa Wizards of Scyldings from the northern most part of the Province. But Blood’s entire family was pretty cruel. Aside from torturing Ugwumps, he used their body parts in potions and incantations—Yuck!—which was against the Code of Ethics big time. She could think of no one more ruthless and more murderous—unless you counted the Frisian Warriors who ate their victims, or the monstrous Helsingas, who ate their victims.
Waving the black scepter high above his head, he said, “Are you ready?”
Ready for what?” Zofia asked, but didn’t really want to know.
Varro numa pythis!” his voice echoed off rock walls as though he had a bullhorn. He must have been showing off. No one used old incantations like that any more.
Zofia felt an electric tingle all around her—which always accompanied grand wizardry workings—and all at once the cliffs trembled. Brown, cinnamon, ocher and rust melted and fused together like wax under intense heat. Suddenly, she was standing on a flat stone surface. Well, at least she was down off the cliff.
Are you ready to play?” Blood asked. “Oh—yes . . . we need the pieces.” He waved his scepter once again. “Et te invoco Salibatum!” he incanted.
An octet of angry Bloods now stood in a line in front of her, staring at her with that same wicked, imperious smile. Blood had multiplied his image several times.
Zofia shivered uncontrollably.
In the same moment, a leathery, wrinkled-faced woman with wild white-as-gossamer hair, and gray-blue eyes appeared to her left.
Aunt Tillie?” Her full name was Ottillie Anubis. She was actually Zofia’s great aunt on her mother’s side.
On her right side, as though he had just Evasserated, a tall, handsome man with collar-length, blue-black hair and savage sapphire eyes appeared.
Eyes going wide in surprise, she uttered, “Dorian?” on a bewildered breath.
Dorian Grandier was her husband. He was dressed in royal blue robes of the Brhynoth Wizards with a golden seal of the Knights of the Witenagemont over his heart. A black wand in his hand, Dorian stared down Blood. His six foot stature gave him a few inches over Blood. Broad of shoulder, steely eyes, and a bump in what would have been a straight nose, where it had been broken in a fight. This combination made him look all the meaner.
Wait another troll minute here. Was she hallucinating? Dorian had been dead for five First World years. What on Euphoria was going on?
Are you ready, Zofia?” The repeated question echoed in her ears.
She looked over at the line of Bloods. “Now what, you ugly bastard?” Zofia growled. Hadn’t he done plenty already?
At the same exact time, each and every Blood drew back their scepter and thrust them forward—“Destructus malefica!”—from their tips flew red bolts of fire, so hot she could feel its searing heat. It slammed into Dorian, turning him instantly into ashes that fell in a pile at Zofia’s feet.
©2008 Lorelei Bell

"Spell of the Black Unicorn" scheduled to be out by May 15th 2013

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Spell Books ~ Covers by My Friend Jeremy Hawkins

Once upon a time I wanted to be a writer. I wanted it so bad I drove all the way from my house to Dubuque Iowa (I think it was about two hours drive) to attend a writer's round table/critique forum. That was back in the early 80's. I thought I had a chance to get recognized. The teacher was published, had an agent and one of the women in the group had her historical romance novel grabed up by his agent.

Long story short, I didn't make the cut. I wasn't even considered. My story was so in need of an editor, (spelling, grammar, punctuation), in fact, that it was obvious to my teacher that I had much to learn. But I couldn't afford the class, and couldn't keep on driving all the way out there to Dubuque.

Fast forward to 2013. Here I am, my first self-published book (not the one I'd been writing in 1980's), came about when I was turning 50 and figured I was never going to get so lucky as to be picked up by anyone, let alone be published. So, I published my novel about a sorceress, Zofia Trickenbod, who is hiding out on Earth trying to keep the Stone of Irdisi (the most powerful magical implement on their world) safe from the evil Vesilvod Bood. The black unicorn, not so surprisingly, follows Vesilvod Blood around, hoping (we think), he will change his coloring back to white. Meanwhile Zofia's husband--who was long thought dead from an attack from Blood--returns, but not as a wizard, but a vampire. This paranormal/myster/romance crossover was my first seen by other readers back in 2008, and they loved it. I had people ask when the next one would be out. Yeah. Not at $400/book. Wasn't gonna happen. Now that we are able to self-publish, I felt like it was time to reintroduce Spell of the Black Unicorn to the world again as an eBook.

The original cover was drawn by yours truely. I wanted the unicorn on the cover. I wanted to show that it was somewhat whimsical, but probably made it look like a children's book with the way I had it. *sigh* (The original cover can be seen on my sidebar).

So, I'v been working with a good friend of mine, Jeremy Hawkins, who has a flair for retro art deco, and the colors are always paired up nicely. I had this cover that he worked up for me. This is one version. We may have to find a lighter color for the title and all. But this is really something I like for my new cover. There is another version, and I'm waiting to make a decision on whether I like it justified to the left or staggered.
Okay people. This is the one of two I chose after Jeremy worked on the book cover. He gave me this one with the justified lettering at the top. the other one was staggered. I think I like this one best. What do you guys think. Will it work?

If you want to leave comment on these covers, that would be great. Just so you know I'm going to ask that the lettering be somewhat brighter so it stands out.

Thanks for stopping by. As I get closer to publishing the ebook, I'll have more posts on this story, and some teases up soon.
Have a great Sunday, and rest of the week, my friends!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

WIP Wednesday

When ever I get a story under my cap, I've gotta just let it come out. Well, you guys know what I mean. I've said that I was beginning number 7 book in the Sabrina Strong series. The way it needed to be told/written was a bugger, but I figured it out, thanks to reading Charlaine Harris' book Dead In The Family. She doesn't begin with "Chapter One" at all. See, Sookie got badly hurt in the book prior to this one. So, I think what Harris was trying to do was get us all up to speed by putting headings like MARCH THE FIRST WEEK; MARCH THE SAME WEEK, etc.

At the end of the sixth Sabrina Strong book, same thing. Sabrina gets damaged. (Oops, that's a bit of a spoiler, but oh well). So when I started making notes and then writing these individual scenes, I thought of Harris' book and realized that what I need to do is put the dates down as my header. December 15th and so forth, and either the time or place or both, since she's in the hospital. I also did this because there's a lot of stuff going on around her with the other characters, and before I actually got into Sabrina's head too much, I wanted to get into everyone else's heads. It seemed to work. I got the first 36 pages, I believe, where I'm doing this. Then on page 37 I begin Chapter One, and Sabrina's POV.

Sometimes when I'm showing all this back story, I feel a need to sort of step away from Sabrina for a while. Give you the POV of my other main characters. This is what I began doing in the fourth book, and it's very different from the first three. But this 7th one just needed a bit of something extra at the front, and this seemed to work for me.

Sorry, this post is short. Been busy. Hope you all have a good week!

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