Monthly Archives: June 2016

The Skeleton Key Series

Hey, guys! Check this out. I know many of you have enjoyed Into Elurien (huge thanks to those who have left reviews and recommended it to friends! It really helps). Are you curious about the rest of this fantastic multi-author series? Want to see where else the Skeleton Key might lead you?

Read on…


Skeleton Key Book Series

One Skeleton Key. Endless Adventures.

One magical key.

The turn of a lock.

An adventure of a lifetime.

The Skeleton Key finds those who are brave enough. Curious enough. Crazy enough. It only needs an unsuspecting hand and inconspicuous door. Magic uncoils and where the door leads, no one knows. The one way to discover the truth is to step through into a world of the exotic and untold.

If you dare to dream the impossible…

Prepare yourself.

Unlock the Skeleton Key adventures.


GAME MASTER by Scarlett Dawn

“Forbidden love will change the rules.”


warrior queen


To break the siege, he’ll break a law.

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SHADOW WINGS by JC Andrijeski

In a time of great darkness, can Ilana help an angel regain his wings?

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“A skeleton key unlocks a passage to a world of fae, mythical creatures, and a dark elfin King who will do anything to claim his bride.”

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MECHANICAL HEARTS by Nicole Blanchard

“Life and love are on the line and time is running out. Tick tock.”



ELFHAME by Anthea Sharp

“A prince, a prophecy, and the young woman who holds the fate of a world in her hands.”

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“What do you do when the face in the mirror isn’t yours?”

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Eunica BOOK

EUNICA by J. Rose Alexander

“Her destiny was not in the shadow of death, but in the light of another life.”

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Sleeping Dragons_Cristina Rayne


“Some doors can only be unlocked by the right hand…”

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A curse so powerful, not even true love’s kiss can break it.




She was the key to uniting their world.”



THE ASSASSIN’S MARK by Sarah Mäkelä and Tavin Soren

An assassin becomes a protector as he enters a magical world…all for the woman in his dreams.




“An immortal dictator will soon meet his match, in a time-traveling sorceress with revenge in her soul.”



DARK FAE by Lillian Cartier

“The most breathtaking love she’s ever found may also bring her ultimate ruin and death.”

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HIS IMMORTAL KISS by Liliana Rhodes

“He’s waited centuries for her.”



WITCHMATE by Renee George

“When thief Emma Watson stumbles into an alternative world full of warring witches and werewolves, it sets her on a dangerous path that may lose her the only man she’s ever wanted to love.”



INTO ELURIEN by Kate Sparkes

“Sometimes you need to step into a fairy tale to find something real.”

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“She wasn’t supposed to fall for the bad guy…”

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MAGICAL ACTS by Michele Bardsley

“Otherworldly to-do list: 1. Save mage. 2. Fall in love. 3. Avoid certain death.”



THE DEATH SEER by Tanis Kaige

“Caught between life and death, her salvation can only be found in the boy who went missing twenty years ago.”




One twist of the key will lead to her destiny.

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LOVE IN FANTASY by Elle Christensen

“Twelve nights, twelve fantasies, twelve stories of true love. Or…is it only eleven?”


AotWC ebook


“The heart and blood of life will give rise to the final army.”




“Will you come away with the Prince of Darkness if he asks you to?”




“She dreams of her happily ever after. He plans to destroy it.”




“One night in New Orleans, a ghost tour, a handsome stranger, and the spirit of a Sultan long dead.”



Writing on Summer Vacation: Day One

7:00 AM – Okay. I said I wanted to start writing at 7:30. But I need a shower… I can do this.

7:05 – I know I said no social media before work, but just a quick check won’t hurt. Huh. A reviewer needs a Kindle copy of Into Elurien. Guess that’s important, since she’s booked a date on the series blog tour. *sniffs self* Shower first.

7:30 – Definitely need to let my hair air-dry today.  Better to look like a frizzy purple buffalo than to spend another 20 minutes doing that (and overheating myself in the process). Speaking of heat, I know I had shorts here somewhere…

7:45 – Excellent. Everyone’s still asleep. *stomach grumbles* Dammit. Okay, invisaligns out, make a shake with greek yogurt to keep me full a bit longer (I hope), drink that and an iced coffee. I miss being able to sit and sip while I work. Brush teeth, invisaligns back in. Snap self in face with tiny elastic. Perfect.

8:05 – Okay. Writing. Annnnnnd the dogs want out. Might as well check Facebook quickly while they OH MY GOODNESS THERE’S A RUNNING APP WHERE YOU PRETEND YOU’RE IN A FANTASY SETTING AND GET TO GO ON QUESTS?!* I must investigate this immediately.

8:15 – Oops, forgot to put the laundry in. Better do that now if it’s going to line-dry today.

8:20 – Guess I should send that email.

8:30 – Annnd one kid is up. He’s pretty self-sufficient. They both are. My brain is a far greater obstacle than my boys are. It still doesn’t want to settle in and get this chapter fixed so I can move on to fresh drafting. Maybe I’ll warm up with a blog post, see if other kid wakes up. Then I can start after breakfast…

8:45 – (Now) This is my brain on trying to work. If you’ve read “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield, you know about resistance. I get it bad every time I try to start working. My brain is scattered, no matter what I do. Pomodoro sprints, meditation, visualization to get myself excited about writing a scene, planning, not planning…they help, but not much. On days like today, when my brain is fogged up and I’m recovering from Sunday’s migraine and the world seems to be moving around me at confusing speeds, it’s hard to start. I have zero focus. I’m scattered. My head feels like it’s physically stuffed with cotton. Possibly cotton candy.

The pink kind.

So what am I going to do about it?

I’m going to go make breakfast for Thing 2, I’m going to try to forget how much I wish I had a huge cup of coffee at my desk, and I’m going to publish this post, get my ass back here, put some music on, and work.

Maybe I won’t get the two hours in that I wanted today. Maybe I won’t get this scene revised (quite doubtful, actually, given the speed my brain is working at this morning). But I’m going to try. I’m going to prove to myself, to my muse, to my family, and anyone else who’s watching that I’m committed. I am doing this.

And step by tiny, painful step, I’m going to get through this draft.

Wish me luck.



Vlog post: Pre-writing

I got a few reader questions about what I do before I write a book, so that’s the topic of this week’s vlog post (which is late. Oops).

We’re talking ideas, characters, plotting, and pantsing!

Into Elurien Chapter Reveal–and a small note

Hey, guys!

I’ve posted the first two chapters of Into Elurien at this link, if anyone’s looking to kick the tires a little before pre-ordering. It’s just a little taste of the style of the story, an introduction to our unlikely heroine, and a bit of a tease of what’s coming in LESS THAN A WEEK.


One thing you might notice about Hazel is that she’s a little older than the usual YA character. That’s because (drumroll)… this isn’t a YA book.

Shocking, I know. 🙂

Into Elurien is in no way related to the Bound trilogy. It’s a stand-alone fantasy romance, and it falls loosely into the New Adult category. So what does that mean? It means that the main character is about college age, not high school. It means I didn’t censor her language (not that I personally think that’s a necessity for YA), and it means there’s a little more heat in this one than in my past books.

Not graphic, porny sex. It’s not remotely erotica. Just saying that before anyone gets either excited or offended. But this is a romance, and it’s not exactly a clean read.

Why would I do that? Because it suited the story. Because it worked for the characters. Because the love story, warts and all, is an important part of her character development. Because this is the book I wanted to write.

Because I’m a fantasy writer, but not solely a YA fantasy writer. Though I’ll be jumping back to that for my next project, it just wasn’t right for Into Elurien. And sometimes I like to explore a little, you know? Stretch myself. Step out of my comfort zone.

That said, this one will definitely appeal to fans of the Bound trilogy. It’s got the amazing characters you guys expect from me, a story full of emotion and humour, romance, friendships, magic, and a lot of surprises. Advance readers are thrilled so far. I think you will be, too.

Here’s the link again to the first two chapters. Enjoy!

(Here are the pre-order links)




Character Reveal: Zinian

Are you guys ready for this?

Newsletter subscribers met Zinian on the same day this blog hosted Into Elurien’s cover reveal (the benefits of subscription are real). Now it’s time to unleash him in public.

I hope he behaves himself. He’s a lovely guy, but he’s… well, he’s a bit of a monster.

I’ll just grab a bit of chapter three and leave it here for you. Enjoy.

(If you’re the type who needs context, our main character has found herself quite suddenly surrounded by violent monsters, about to be executed. A moment ago she was in a hotel attic in Newfoundland, Canada. These things do happen, or so I’m told…)


A lower voice, more human. I only shook harder. With my head down, I couldn’t see anything but the crowd of feet in front of me parting. I closed my eyes. Something cold touched my chin. Metallic. A blade. I pictured the cat’s great, curved sword, and felt like vomiting as it lifted my chin.

“Look at me,” the human voice ordered.

I forced my eyes open and was confronted by the strangest feet I’d ever seen. Human…ish. Longer toes than normal, with curved claws instead of toenails, and skin covered in tough blue scales to the knees. I didn’t want to look higher, but the sword beneath my chin insisted. My gaze continued up the legs, which were covered by ragged pants from the knees up. Above that, hard abs and a chest that would have looked comfortingly human if not for the faint blue patina that shaded parts of the bronze skin, or the extra set of muscles under the otherwise highly acceptable pectorals. Spots of blood had dried on his skin. The fingers of the smooth hand that gripped the straight-bladed sword ended in sharp black claws. I let myself look up to the creature’s broad shoulders, where massive, bat-like black wings arched high behind him. Dark scales dotted their bony parts in patches.

“Look at my eyes,” he ordered, “or die now.” The blade tilted sideways, a reminder of how easily he could follow through on the threat.

I swallowed hard, and the tip of the blade pricked again at my throat. Another deep breath, and I looked up.

I met his eyes, and they were enough to keep me from noticing anything else for several moments. Bright green, and blessedly normal. Not snake eyes, not feline slits for pupils. The thick black eyebrows that topped them furrowed, but seemed more intensely observant than angry.

“Please,” I said again. “I don’t know why I’m here.”

His mouth twisted into a snarl, revealing long, white canine teeth. He turned toward the cat person, and I noted the deep scars that marred his right cheek. “It’s not her.”

When he returned his attention to me, his roughly cut black hair fell over his face. At least, the parts of it that weren’t held behind the thick horns that spiralled back like bony corkscrews from his hairline.

Devil. That name came to me as easily as centaur had, but seemed not entirely right. As he glared down at me, I thought that it might be close enough.

Wondering how our MC got there? Curious to see more? I’ll be revealing chapters one AND two next Friday. Or you can just go ahead and pre-order this one in ebook (links here). Into Elurien releases June 15, and at just-over-novella length it’s a gorgeous, fast-paced, magic-and-romance-filled, chill out with some monsters beach read. Or cottage read. Or relaxing at home read. Whichever.

Into Elurien cover 1800x

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the series here!



Book Review (video): The Productivity Project

Here’s my review of The Productivity Project by Chris Bailey, the book that led me to pick up The Shallows (reviewed in my last post here). It’s an interesting and practical book. Really glad I picked it up.

The vlog is still going well. Still fun. I’m not posting all of the videos here (maybe I should), but I’m trying to post every Tuesday. Next week’s will be a bit longer, as I had a couple of related questions that readers asked.

If you have ideas for what you’d like to see me do a video (or blog post here) on, let me know! I’m always open to suggestions.


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