Monthly Archives: February 2013

Cover Art – Warlock’s Pawn – A Fantasy Erotic Romance

cover_warlockspawn

Coming March 18, 2013 – (Get 20% off when you pre-order from LSbooks.com

I’ve been absent from the blogosphere of late, and now you know why. Aside from trying to hammer out my two WIPs, I’ve been busy getting Warlock’s Pawn ready for release. It’s all done, and I have shiny new cover art to show off. Inspired by The Arabian Nights, Warlock’s Pawn is a romantic suspense replete with political intrigue, magic, and a sword-wielding alpha male.

Mini-Blurb:

In a world of blood and sand, becoming a warlock’s queen is a fatal curse. To survive the Helicon court, Alia must learn to play a lethal game. But while she faces assassins with a dagger in hand, what she fears most is losing her heart along with her freedom.

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The To Be Read Pile Reviews Tower in the Woods

Brutally Honest over at The To Be Read Pile just posted a review of Tower in the Woods.

Here’s the first couple of sentences:

What a unique idea! At the end of the world, we have zombies! Along with a virgin sniper trapped in a tower, rope made out of zombie hair and some wicked rope bondage. Add that to witty one-lines and extremely well written characters – you have Tower in the Woods by Tara Quan.

The full review can be found at:

http://thetbrpile.weebly.com/1/post/2013/02/review-tower-in-the-woods-by-tara-quan.html

An Unfortunate Sport (Absolute Write Blog Chain – February 2013)

This post is part of the February 2013 Blog Chain at Absolute Write. This month, we tried something new and are having each blogger in the chain “Suggest-a-Prompt” to the next blogger. The choices thus far have been interesting. My unfortunate prompt was “Unfortunate Sports”, which I have taken the liberty of reducing to “An Unfortunate Sport” (Note: Give me a break, guys. I passed PE by writing reports for extra credit).

Nulli took a long sip from her champagne flute. Her floppy wide-brimmed hat flapped in the desert wind. The match was exhilarating to watch–the hard pounding of hooves, the crack of mallet against ball. Within seconds players raced from one end of the field to the other, chasing an elusive white target smaller than their fists. The perfectly manicured grass stood in stark contrast to the sandy dunes. Spectators milled around as waiters circulated copious amounts of alcohol. For most, watching the game was an excuse to drink beer. 

But her eyes were on the rider who was readying to execute a perfect backhand. The mallet, arm and body were as one. The pendulum swung, and the ball flew beyond the reach of the other players. Rising from his seat, he raced after it at a full gallop as the other players followed in his wake. He kept the lead. Another loud crack and the ball launched past the goal posts.

The bell signaled the end of the final chukka. His team had won. Emptying her glass, Nulli took off her hat and fluffed her hair. She smoothed the wrinkles on her red sun-dress and grabbed her pocketbook. Her heels clicked on marble as she walked through the Club’s restaurant and headed to the stables. Most men who played polo left their expensive ponies in the care of well-paid grooms and vets. The man she was rushing to was different.

Her heart raced. They had been planning this weekend for ages. He worked in a different country, so they had spent most of their relationship flying to meet each other. The tournament had gone on for three days, and that game was the final match. He was now all hers.

She smiled to herself the entire walk down to the stables. She found him silhouetted next to a stall with a carrot in hand. His favorite chestnut mare poked its head out to take a bite.  His white jeans were muddied, and his dark polo was drenched in sweat. She couldn’t think of a time when he looked sexier. Well, not a recent time.

His white teeth flashed when she reached him. With heels, they were close to the same height. She smelled horse, mud and a hint of beer. She tucked an errant strand of dark blond hair behind his ears. “Great game.”

“This is better,” he murmured before their lips met. She closed her eyes. Her hat and pocketbook dropped to the floor. The only way she was able to steady herself was by gripping fistfuls of his shirt. His arms circled her, pulling her so close she could feel the bulge growing against her belly. She smiled into the kiss. It was about time.

Suddenly, he stopped. He lifted his head, winced in pain, and stepped back. “Ah…”

Dazed, Nulli blinked as she looked up at him. “Ah?”

His expression was adorably sheepish. “I think we may have to slightly alter our plans.”

She crossed her arms and lifted an eyebrow. He had some explaining to do.

He scratched the back of his head. “So, it’s been a long tournament. I’m completely beat.”

Her gaze swept him from head to toe. “You look plenty energized to me.”

Another wince. What the heck was going on? “Did you fall and hit your head?”

He rolled his eyes. “What kind of player do you think I am?”

She listed off the other possible injuries. “A mallet to the wrist. A ball to the knee. Your face hit the horse’s head. What could you have possibly done to yourself that I didn’t see in the field?”

He coughed. “There are things …”

“Uh huh…” she prompted.

His face turned bright red. “Things that happen to people who’ve been on a horse for many days.”

She frowned, what could he possibly be talking about? “I’m assuming this thing affects your ability to perform certain functions.”

He nodded, looking relieved. “Not permanently. Just for a while.”

“How long of a while?” she asked.

“Well, I don’t know exactly. It hasn’t been this bad before,” he admitted.

Okay, this was getting beyond annoying. “Would you just spit it out?”

He groaned. “This is a problem I would rather not share …”

She placed her hands on her hips. “We’re getting married in three months. If there is something wrong with you in that area,” she drew a circle in the air with her finger, “I really need to know.”

“I just said it wasn’t permanent,” he countered.

She jabbed her finger into his chest. “Spill.”

He let out a beleaguered sigh. “Fine. I’m just saying–this is not an image you want in your head.”

It was her turn to roll her eyes. “Trust me. I have actually seen plenty images of you I would rather not have in my head. It comes with the territory.”

He looked surprised. “What images?”

She wagged her finger. “Don’t try to change the subject. What is your problem?”

He pinched the bridge of his nose and mumbled something so fast she couldn’t make out the words.

“You’re a lawyer. I’m sure you know how to articulate,” she scolded. “Whatever it is, I’m sure it’s not as bad as you think.”

His shoulders slumped. He lifted his head to glare of her. “There’s a piece of skin missing from my balls.”

“Oh.” He was right. That wasn’t an image she wanted in her head. “I understand.”

“No,” he ground out, “you really don’t.”

Cocking her head to the side, Nulli mulled over the possibilities. “That sucks.”

With a defeated look, he glanced upward. “Trust me, I know.”

With a mischievous grin, she continued. “But I think I can up with a few mutually pleasurable ways we can work around your unfortunate problem.”

Check out this month’s other bloggers, all of whom have posted or will post their own responses:

Participants and posts:
orion_mk3 – http://nonexistentbooks.wordpress.com (link to post) Yuppies Who Hate the Family Business
ConnieBDowell – http://bookechoes.com/ (link to post) Unexpected Library Encounter
bmadsen – http://hospitaloflife.wordpress.com/ (link to post) Cupcake Disaster
MsLaylaCakes – http://www.taraquan.com/ (Me) Unfortunate Sports
HistorySleuth – http://historysleuth.blogspot.com/ (link to post) Less Than Fortunate Foods
writingismypassion – http://charityfaye.blogspot.com/ (link to post) Blind Date with a Ventriloquist
katci13 – http://www.krystalsquared.net/ (link to post) Evil Cupid
KitCat – http://twilightasylum.wordpress.com/ (link to post) Hunting With Houds
Angyl78 – http://jelyzabeth.wordpress.com/ (link to post) A Ghost’s Bad Day
randi.lee – http://emotionalnovel.blogspot.com/ (link to post) The Wrong Bar
Lady Cat – http://carolsrandomness.blogspot.ca/ (link to post) Visitors
pyrosama – http://matrix-hole.blogspot.com/ (link to post) What the Leprechaun Said
Ralph Pines – http://ralfast.wordpress.com/ (link to post) Under the Bed
dclary – http://www.hardhobbittobreak.com/ (link to post) Warm Kitty, Soft Kitty, Evil Ball of Fur
meowzbark – http://www.lizzylessard.com/ (link to post) Road Trip

SRHowen – http://srhowen1.blogspot.com (link to post)  Faded Blue Jeans

Bumped:
Amanda R. – http://www.twoamericansinchina.com/ (link to post) Picture

Briony-zisaya – http://fantasywriterwannabe.blogspot.com/ (link to post) Topic

CatherineHall – http://theelephantinthetemple.blogspot.com/ (link to post) Topic

Celebrating St. Valentine Giveaway Hop (#CelebratingValentine) Feb. 11-18

celebratingstvalentineWelcome to the Celebrating Saint Valentine Giveaway Hop!

The Valentine’s Day moment I’d like to share is from February 14, 2005:

It was the first Valentine’s Day I shared with my then boyfriend  (now husband). He was still paying his way through college and didn’t have much money set aside. He was so broke he claimed he wouldn’t go to his graduation on principle, but I had a sneaking suspicion the decision had a lot more to do with the $75 robe. He still insisted on a Valentine’s Day dinner at this little Indian restaurant on Newbury Street (which, incidentally, was $75).

It was one of those days when everything went right–candle light, three course meal, followed by a delicious mango creme brûlée. It was a blistering Boston night, but it gave us an excuse to cuddle on our walk back. Our university had a curfew, so we knew we wouldn’t be able to get into each other’s buildings. It made the day all the more special.

I’m a first-time participant, and I have one $10 Amazon.com gift card on offer.  For more goodies, click on the  Celebrating Saint Valentine button above to reach the full list of participants.

WordPress won’t let me embed Rafflecopter, which means you’ll need to go to my facebook page (here) to enter the raffle. Before you do, you should probably get the mandatory entry over with first.

Leave a Comment answering this question:

What should I base Book 3 in the Undead Fairy Tales series on?  (Note: Book 1 is based on Rapunzel and Book 2, which I’m currently writing, is based on Little Red Riding Hood. The series is set in a post-apocalyptic zombie world).

I’ll get out of the way now and let you go over to my facebook page to submit your entry. Best of Luck!

Science Fiction and Fantasy Saturday No. 6 (#sffsat) – Tower in the Woods

Continuing from the past weeks, this snippet is from Tower in the Woods, a post-apocalyptic zombie romance now available on AmazonARe and LSBooks (I’m still waiting for it to show up on Barnes and Noble). It is based on the Grimm’s fairy tale Rapunzel. I’m switching over to Dane’s POV this time.

For past snippets, click on the SFFSat tag at the bottom of this post.

Special Agent Dane Prince silently cursed as he hauled himself up the Tower in the woods. The flimsy rope cut painfully into his palms, the small sharp fibers that were braided elaborately together feeling like prickly thorns. He could only thank his lucky stars the woman on the other end was holding steady. Dane couldn’t make out any facial features when he first looked up at the Tower, the moonlight having silhouetted the female and obscuring his view. He had been desperate, asking her to pull him up, even though he strongly doubted any female had the strength necessary to do so. Now that he was a good fifteen feet off the ground, he was relieved he had been wrong, but intimately aware if she suddenly let go of the rope he would most surely die.

Twitter: #sffsat

SFFSat is a group of writers sharing snippets from both published and unpublished works of science fiction and fantasy. You can read more about the group by clicking the banner to the left, as well as follow links to the other participants.

Any comments are much appreciated!

A Letter to Book Pirates – Please Stop (For Your Own Sake)!

Dear Book Pirate,

My point can be summed up in two words – Please Stop!

I don’t know how you came to realize my book existed. It has been out for less than a month, and it is not even available in all retail outlets. I’m a first-time author. This book is a novella. It was published by a small-press ePublisher. Considering it is a post apocalyptic erotic zombie romance based on a fairy tale, I would say the genre is pretty darn niche.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered what you were doing.

I wrote Tower in the Woods while working close to 50 hours a week and adjusting to life in a rather dangerous place. For over three months, instead of turning on the TV or Xbox when I got home, I turned on my laptop. I wrote every weekend, after work every day, and I even snuck in writing spurts while sitting in an FAV to meet people at the airport. Once I was done, my publisher paid a number of people to make my manuscript better – readers, a copy editor, line editor, and cover artist. Then we spent a great deal of time trying to get the book reviewed so potential buyers can make an informed purchasing decision.

Do you want to read the sequel? Do you want to read my next books? Do you want quality works of fiction and non-fiction to exist at all? Please understand–authors, editors, publishers and cover artists need to make a living. The only way we can recoup the time and effort spent on this book is by selling it. Most ebooks (including mine) are priced less than a Frapuccino at Starbucks, and they give many more hours of enjoyment.

One day, I would like to be able to write full-time. Heck, I’ll take part-time over sneaking in writing moments whenever I can. Maybe then, I will have the energy to write a full-length novel. I would also like to have multiple books out in a year instead of one or two. It will never be economically possible if you, book pirate, do not let me sell my book in peace.

You don’t think my book is worth $3.99 (occasionally on sale for $2.99)? That’s fine. Don’t buy it. But please do not buy it once and post it online for other people to download for free. Please do not try to obtain it illegally for free. I’m not discussing morality or ethics here, just pure self-interest. Apply this rule – if everyone chooses to pirate books instead of buying them, then authors will not write books, editors won’t be able to make a living, and publishers won’t make the investment. In short, you won’t have anything worth reading to pirate.

For your own sake, please stop!

Very Angrily Yours,

Tara

Sizzling Hot Books Reviews Tower in the Woods

Kayla over at Sizzling Hot Books just posted a review of Tower in the Woods. Here’s a quote from the very end:

I am not going to be able to find enough positive words for how much I loved Tower in the Woods. I am not a big fan of zombies at all, but this story was so well written I may change my mind.

The full review can be found at:

http://sizzlinghotbooks.com/tower-in-the-woods-by-tara-quan/

I’ll let you draw your own conclusions, but I think she really liked it!

 

[Note: It’s official, Google Alerts doesn’t work. Well, maybe it does and I’m not using it properly, but blog posts don’t seem to result in an email. Not that I need an excuse to regularly google myself – after all, Rick Castle does it on a regular basis.]

Check Out My Guest Blog with Kimber Vale – The Perks of Being an ePublished Author – http://wp.me/p1EqZm-k7

I popped over to Kimber Vale’s blog yesterday to chat about the perks of being an ePublished author. When I was researching my options for Tower in the Woods, I was able to find lots of articles on the merits of both self-publishing and traditional publishing. However, I didn’t see that much said about the perks of going for an ePublisher.

The post does not in any way, shape, or form compare ePublishing to self-publishing and/or traditional publishing. A lot of what I wrote pertains to the other two mediums as well. It’s just a list of my positive experiences thus far.

If you’re interested, you can find the post at http://kimbervale.wordpress.com/2013/02/02/the-perks-of-being-an-epublished-author/.

Science Fiction and Fantasy Saturday No. 5 (#sffsat) – Tower in the Woods

Continuing from the past weeks, this snippet is from Tower in the Woods, a post-apocalyptic zombie romance now available on AmazonARe and LSBooks. It is based on the Grimm’s fairy tale Rapunzel. For past snippets, click on the SFFSat tag at the bottom of this post. (Note: For those I have somehow lured into buying this book, don’t worry. I’m going to start switching it up after a couple more snippets.)

“You need to leave,” Nel yelled down, some part of her balking at the thought of killing another human, even if it was a man. “Go away.”

“Look, lady,” the man replied, “the snowstorm of the century just hit these parts and it isn’t going away anytime soon. If you don’t let me in you might as well shoot me. I’m bleeding and the zombies can smell it a mile away. If the brain-eaters don’t get me, hypothermia will.”

Firmly, Nel shook her head, more at ease with nonverbal communication. Then she realized the man couldn’t possibly see that motion in the dark.

Twitter: #sffsat

SFFSat is a group of writers sharing snippets from both published and unpublished works of science fiction and fantasy. You can read more about the group by clicking the banner to the left, as well as follow links to the other participants.

Any comments are much appreciated!

I was interviewed by Tina Holland on The Clog Blog – Check it out at http://wp.me/p60Mw-ez

Over at Tina Holland’s blog, I talk about my writing process and the steps it took to get Tower in the Woods published. Click here to check it out.