Sunday, January 31, 2016

Vampires and Rural Fantasy

For my 17th Amber Quill release on the Heat side (m/f) I tried my first an only--to date--vampire story. And it was far from the typical vampire tale. Well, Deirdre never was one to stick with the established paradigms and stay securely in the box!

The Chess Master's Queen was one of those tales that seemed to take a life of its own and it took off in ways I had no clue of when I began to write it. First off, I know that chess is not considered a sexy game but... I may be giving my age away but I harked back to the first Thomas Crown Affair with Faye Dunaway and Steve McQueen. There was a chess game and talk about subtle but flaming hot. Whew. A scarlet finger-nailed hand lasciviously stroking a pawn threatened to start a fire! So I knew there were possibilities. That was where I started on a story for a collection called Games People Play.

Then somehow the hero became a vampire, bored with his nonlife and a brilliant young woman of mixed ancestry who challenges the old champion to a match... Turned out there was much more to her than anyone suspected too. To say more would be a spoiler  so I will just go to the blurb and cover!!

Viktor Yabaczill has built himself a comfortable, if rather boring, existence, concealing the fact he is Vampara, a member of one ancient vampire kind. His hobby and passion is chess. When he receives a mysterious challenge to a match, he hopes it will provide some excitement and liven up his tedious life. Little does he know just how exciting things can get...
Ekatrina Kelleher has a secret...actually several secrets. The most precious is the formula to move beyond existence as one of the undead to true eternal life. Long ago, she was slighted by an ignorant peasant lad, but after waiting eons to get her revenge, she now intends to sample some lascivious thrills in the process...
When Viktor and Ekatrina go head-to-head over a chess board, sparks fly, and the stakes are eternal life versus erotic slavery. Will it be a "win-win" or a "lose-lose" situation? Neither knows until the final checkmate.

A bit later, I began what became a series about a future or alternate reality version of the US Border Patrol where a new division is focused on a very different type of alien invaders. No national boundaries involved here but mysterious gates that link a universe full of realities through which some very bad baddies come. The first tale, Beyond the Shadows, tells the story of two childhood buddies who find they are working together and delve into a shared past to find the power and methods to stop one of one very nasty character. In doing so they learn they once were  lovers and perhaps should become so again--but will their friendship survive such a change? This was the first of my Thin Green Line series. You'll be hearing more about the other stories soon.

Here is the blurb and the cover which I really like!

First-year Border Patrol officers Rhys Davis and Liam Malone have been friends since second grade.
When their new assignment puts them on the front line in tracking down a vicious and inhuman killer, an unearthly Soul-Eater, along the southern border, they must call on every resource at their disposal.
The most potent of these resources turns out to be memories they share from two thousand years ago, a time in the British Isles when they were partners in every way, forming an eternal bond that allowed them to defeat this same enemy in that lifetime.
Now, Rhys and Liam can't help but wonder...will crossing the line from friends to lovers in this lifetime destroy their friendship or build on it?


Saturday, January 30, 2016

Flashback for a special addition!

If you go back to an earlier post, Heating up January, I just added a pencil sketch I made of my college prof who was the inspiration for Phillipe Reynard in Journal of a Timid Temptress. I found it and scanned it in today. Sorry I did not have it handy when I did the feature on that tale but you can scoot back and take a llook!

More new titles tomorrow.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Everyone Bored Yet?

I hope not. There are still quite a few titles to cover. Well, I do have sixty days to do it but I also have a few other things planned to do before the last day they will all be available at Amber Quill and various other venue, March 30. Don't forget, you can find them at http://www.amberquill.com/store/m/137-Deirdre-O-Dare.aspx

Tonight we're going to enjoy Dude Ranch Nights. This is a nostalgia period tale set in the early 1950s. It is definitely inspired by a real person although I changed him a lot in creating Cameron Greenway. However, this gentleman was a guest ranch operator and big game hunter on whom I had a huge crush for a number of years--even though he was old enough to be my grandfather! He still cut a dashing figure and I am sure a lot of ladies had swooned over him in the day. I'm not sure where Carole came from but she seemed to be the perfect match and foil to stir a lot of conflict and sexual tension that would explode into some sizzling scenes. It's a  longer novella so you get a bit more bang for your buck, too. I may even go back and expand it into a full length novel in the future. I think there is plenty left untold still. Here is the blurb and the cover, which is another I liked a lot.

By the way it is a strong heat level 3 with some X-rated scenes featuring more than just the starring couple!

Blurb: When New York socialite Carole “C.J.” VanDemont loses the uncle with whom she went adventuring, life looks bleak and dull. Then a magazine ad entices her to Arizona to visit La Riata Guest Ranch and experience wilderness adventures with guide and rancher Cameron Greenway.
In Cameron, C.J. finds everything she imagined and more. The handsome and intrepid cowboy puts a whole new twist on adventure for her until she becomes helplessly addicted to his brand of excitement.
After enjoying the wildest time of her life, the sexual thrills beyond comparison, C.J. loathes the idea of returning to the staid and narrow world awaiting her back in New York City. Can she even contemplate leaving Arizona after meeting this wonderfully exciting rancher?

Thursday, January 28, 2016

More of Deridre's Back List

Cowgirl Up is not one of the Rodeo Girls series although it certainly is a rodeo story. The title came from a bumper sticker I saw and the idea from reading about a woman who was going into the PBR (Profession Bull Riders) Association and competing with the cowboys. Tabitha came out of that secret place where characters lurk waiting to jump out at an unsuspecting writer and demand, "Write my story." It wasn't long before I also met her brother Gid and his buddy, Wes. From there on the story took off like a roping horse leaving the box and I was just going along for the ride. I thought it turned out pretty well so it must be based on some reality somewhere.

Here is the blurb and the cover:
Tough tomboy Tabitha Conrad rides bulls and bareback broncs like a champ. In only her second rodeo season, she’s headed for the finals. An over-protective older brother and his buddy, however, sometimes take care of her a little too well, and she’s having trouble living up to the bold, bawdy reputation most cowgirls enjoy.
Wes Duncan lost his father and an older brother to bulls in the arena. Now he’s working as a rodeo clown, determined to save as many downed riders as he can. He finds feisty little Tab immensely attractive, but as his best friend’s kid sister, she’s off limits. As much as Wes admires her spunk and determination, every time she comes out on a bull, he almost has a heart attack.
What can Wes do to keep Tab safe? And if he gives in to his heart and his lust, who will keep her safe from him? Before they know it, Tab and Wes are caught up in a whirlwind of passion and misunderstandings. It takes a very close call to bring them to their senses and get Tab up for the ride of her life...

To move to the gay romance side, I'll jump ahead about a year and feature The Chap in Chaps. I suppose most folks know the difference but a 'chap' is a man, and the usage is mostly English. Chaps,(sounds like shaps) are the protective leg covers, generally of leather, that cowboys wear to turn the brush and keep their legs from getting torn up. This was a fun story to write and I set it just before Arizona's statehood, which took place in 1912. Out in the wild west things were still pretty primitive and old fashioned! My 'chap' inherits a ranch and comes to the US to claim his heritage. What he knows about ranching would make a very short book but fortunately he also inherits a very savvy foreman who is also one of the most thrilling people he has ever met! What follows are some amazing adventures of both the outdoor and the amorous kind!

Blurb and cover:
In 1910, Charles Smythe inherits a ranch from his late uncle. With some misgivings about leaving his life in England, he finally arrives in Arizona Territory only to meet one of his employees, an experienced hired hand named Sombra. In Sombra, Charles finds not only the perfect man to teach him all he needs to know about ranching, but also the masterful lover he has always craved. Can he build a real relationship this time, especially with a man so different?
As a youth, Sombra fled his New England home in disgrace when his first homosexual affair become public knowledge. Upon arriving in Arizona, he found employment with Dabney Darwin, Charles’s uncle, and the kindly English expatriate fashioned him into the son he never had. But when Dab’s nephew arrives to assume ownership of the property, Sombra is not sure how to take young Charles. Yet he soon discovers that "taking Charles" is exactly what they both need...and desperately desire...

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Switch Off: A Gwynn Morgan Book!

In all, four of Gwynn Morgan's novels were republished at Amber Quill. Two had some minor rewriting and the others were not modified at all. The first one was The Man in Black. This is a modern western set tale with some elements of a thriller woven through the plot. It's one of my long term favorites and was my late husband's favorite of the books I had completed before his death. You can get it here: http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/150-The-Man-In-Black.aspx BTW this book is PG-13, unlike Deirdre's steamier tales. There are several love scenes, but they are not terribly graphic.

The inspiration came from a real life couple who were active in the reenactment groups in Tombstone, Arizona. I lived just twenty miles west of "the town too tough to die" for over twenty years and visited often. Of course Graveyard Gulch is an analog of Tombstone. I made a lot of changes in the two characters who ultimately became the stars of this story, Melissa and Lawton, but the first spark came from real life. I have a fondness for what I call April-September matches. Not quite as extreme as May-December but separated by a half-generation or so. All but one of my serious love affairs and my marriage fit that category so maybe that's why! Mature men have so much to offer!

For what its worth, I always envisioned Sam Elliot playing Lawton but had more trouble casting Melissa. At the time, Sandra Bullock was playing roles a bit too madcap to fit but her more recent roles indicate she might have been able to handle it. We'll probably never know, huh?

I've always meant to go back and write a story for Jo, Melissa's dear and supportive friend, but so far that has not happened. Maybe it will, especially if I decide to revise this one a little and self-publish it in a year or so. Meanwhile you have two months to get a copy of the first version. To tempt you, here is the blurb and the original and the Amber Quill covers. I liked the concept of the original but the Amber Quill one is certainly more professional. However, computer art came a long way in the intervening years.

Blurb: Proverbial "poor little rich girl" Melissa Hartford, burdened by guilt and grief over her father's death, is instantly attracted to retired Special Forces officer Lawton Kane.
Haunted by the past which threatens to bring danger and death to all he holds dear, Lawton is drawn to Melissa's natural beauty, innocence and sweetness like a bee to a rose, but he dares not let her get close to him lest his enemies target him through her. He fears he can give her nothing but pain and danger, but aches to let her into his lonely world.
The Man in Black enthralls Melissa by his very darkness, the somber, stern face he shows the world. She senses the gentleness and caring behind his facade. Does she dare trust his strength and power to sustain rather than restrain her? When a mutual enemy begins to stalk them both, they must join forces to survive, but such closeness brings its own risks. They may keep their lives but lose their hearts.

Amber Quill Cover

Original Cover

Monday, January 25, 2016

Two More from Deirdre

These stories are somewhat connected so I will feature them together although one is mostly m/f and the other strictly gay. Back when I was starting to write Armed and Amorous, Sandra Bullock's comedy Armed and Fabulous was fresh in my mind. The title piqued my quirky sense and I knew what this story, also about a female FBI agent, should be called. I took some liberties with what I know to be reality about how the FBI operates but call it literary license. I might not choose Sandra to play Kerry Satterfield but one could do worse! Anyway, here is the blurb and cover from this story.

Blurb and cover:
FBI profiler Kerry Satterfield feels she can never live down her mother’s sordid past. She pursues her
chosen career with dogged determination that leaves no time for a life, and certainly none for romance. Then she gets a strange tip on her current case. She ends up prisoner of a man she hasn’t seen for more than fifteen years before he hands her a most unorthodox means to break this case. If it fails, she’s in deep trouble. She may be anyway, because she finds Frank Ogden all too alluring.
Frank has cooperated with his step-brother, Gary, out of fear his mother will be killed if he doesn’t. He agrees to get the nosy FBI agent off Gary’s back but he will not stand to see her hurt or killed. When he realizes Kerry is the girl he befriended when they were both teenagers, he can’t resist the opportunity to pick up where they had left off. Kerry is a hottie now, even if she doesn’t realize it.
In order to bring Gary to justice for his crimes, Kerry, Frank and his friend Roy band together, and in the process, they discover they make a great team, both armed and amorous...

Some readers suggested and I myself really felt that Roy, Frank's friend,  needed his own story and at least a happy-for-now ending. Without my planning for that eventuality, it turned out to be a Canine Cupids story with a wonderful Police dog named Samson. He was inspired by a demonstration I had seen by a canine officer of the Sierra Vista, AZ police department. It was awesome! The title naturally became Saved By Sam and like all the Canine Cupids stories it was very popular.

Blurb and cover:

As he struggles to get back on his feet after the horrors of service as a medic in the Middle East war, Roy Dunham tends bar in a quiet club. The sudden entrance of K-9 Officer Samson, a Belgian Malinois, and his handsome "human" partner Craig Rommel startles Roy, and the cop's attitude puts him off.
Roy's opinion soon changes, however, after Sam and Craig save him from drug-driven violence. He returns the favor by tending their gunshot wounds, and before long, Roy finds himself hoping the policeman and the dog will become permanent parts of his life.
Can Sam be the key to winning Roy's way into Craig Rommel's well-protected heart?

Sunday, January 24, 2016

To Heat Up January

January is not my favorite month. In fact it's about the opposite. Cold weather, long nights and gray skies...it can really bring a person down. So about the only antidote is to curl up and read a good story, preferably on with enough spice, heat and steam to warm you right up and chase those low down mean blues out the door. So I'll offer a couple of mine as a prescription to help you get through the next couple of days. One is an oldie and the other not so much.

Journal of a Timid Temptress was one of the tales that I started only to find it raking off in ways that I had totally not seen coming! I still assert that my characters come out of some black hole from a galaxy far, far away and start to tell me their stories. In a slightly backhanded way, this tale was started as a tribute to a prof on whom I had a huge crush when I was in school and some of the details come from real life. I am not going to confess which but will warn there is also a lot of imagination! There is a threesome scene, I do believe the first one I wrote. It is also in first person, which I rarely use, and in the form of a journal or diary.

Anyway here is the blurb and cover:
Midwestern college student Geri Wilcox is striving to gain education and experience in the amorous arts that were not available in her small farming community home town. Fate puts her in a class taught by Philippe Reynard, the sexiest and most exciting male she has ever seen.
Exercising all her admittedly limited wiles, Geri brings herself to the professor's attention until, as both his public and private pupil, the lessons she desires are made available and exceed her wildest expectations. Fearlessly breaking taboos left and right, Geri forges ahead with her plan to become much more than a timid temptress...



The other story, July 2013 release Dark and Stormy, is my foray into the Gothic genre, with a twist to become a gay romance instead of the usual take of an impoverished young gentlewoman driven to find a way to support herself honorably.  In this case the impoverished young person is a young man... I had a terrific time with this story. There is admittedly a bit of purple prose in the opening scenes but since it was a gentle spoof at the genre, perhaps that is okay. It has some adorable children, an evil villain and some spooky settings. So I hope readers enjoy it.

Here is the blurb and cover:
Gently reared Martin FitzHugh finds himself adrift without means when his uncle goes bankrupt from gambling debts. Martin seeks a livelihood by taking a post as tutor to the young children of an earl on a remote Welsh estate. Arriving on a dark and stormy night that sets the tone for his whole adventure, he falls into intrigue, mystery and powerful new loves—for the three traumatized children and their enigmatic guardian.
Dylan Davis was called back from military service in South Africa after his elder brother supposedly found his wife with another man, killing the pair, then himself. Now, Dylan has to assume the duties of earl as well as care for his nieces and nephew. He hires a young man, sight unseen, to become their tutor while he sets out to uncover the roots of the scandalous tragedy that tore apart his family. Both matters reveal surprising results, however...some tragic and some delightful...

As a special, here is a pencil sketch I made of the Prof I had who was the inspiration for Phillipe Reynard! He had silver hair but a young face and the darkest eyes I think I ever saw. He was mostly Native American with some French ancestors. He was also totally charismatic and a fantastic teacher. I'm sure most of the coeds had a big crush! So I had to write a story for him...

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Back to the Book Talk

Tonight I will move to the more recent end of the list and cover two titles from 2013 and 2014. These are both gay romances since the last m/f one I wrote came out early in 2012.

Wrenching was a story I enjoyed writing. The first hero to appear to me is a young man with a handicap who has been living a tough life. I greatly admire people who never give up and continue to work to improve their lot and life and to overcome a lot of obstacles. Mal is definitely one of those! Then, his hero, rancher Dan, has troubles of his own even though he seems to have the world in his hands, owning a big, successful ranch. The title not only refers to Mal's trade of mechanic but also to some of the events and issues that the two men have to deal with. Betrayals and danger can be wrenching experiences!

Here is the blurb and cover:

Malachi Dunbar has not had an easy life. He’s struggled to overcome numerous roadblocks and hardships as he built himself a life as a mechanic, despite a serious handicap. He’s admired rancher Daniel Winslow from afar but never dreamed events would play out to land him in the amazing spot of being able to do a real service for his secret hero. Can Mal maintain his cool and a safe distance from Dan when they’re sharing a house and working to resolve a dangerous mystery?
Daniel Winslow says he does not have employees but friends who help him run the ranch he inherited from his father. Challenged by his younger stepbrother and facing perilous sabotage to his truck, he enlists the young mechanic to help solve the puzzle. He’d always wanted a real brother or a partner he could trust, but his stepbrother is not the right guy to fill that role. How about Mal, who brings some fine but rare qualities to the Flying W Ranch?

Last Train to Clarkdale was one of those heart stories, one very close and personal in some ways. Although my brother is not gay, otherwise he could almost be the inspiration for Clay, the first hero. Clay found solace in trains and railroad people as a kid and turned to that industry for a career. Noted photographers of wildlife and scenery were household names when I was growing up since my dad was in the second or third tier down of this career field for a time so it was easy to write about Jon and his lifestyle. There really is a town called Clarkdale and it was home to me for my teen years. And there now is a Verde Canyon Scenic Railroad that I have ridden and used as background for this story! 
Here is the blurb and the cover: 
For Clay, always a shy misfit who was bullied at school, contact with the railroad and railroaders in the small town where he grew up was a lifeline. He went on to a career in the industry, although not out on the track. Now, some odd compulsion draws him back to his long-departed home, despite the painful memories he has of the place.
A chance meeting with Jon, a famous world-traveling scenic and wildlife photographer, results from Clay’s impulse, and the men end up sharing an afternoon’s tourist rail trip. Clay develops an instant crush on the beefy man, but what can a geeky clerical-type rail-buff offer a hunk like Jon, a self-professed and footloose lone wolf? Can Clay be satisfied with a brief, hot vacation fling? Or can mutual interest in trains and photography provide enough common ground to form something more between them?

Friday, January 22, 2016

Give y'all a break

I am kind of tied up following a couple of sled dog races tonight so I am going to take a night off from posting books. My title Love is Snowblind woould fit the theme but it's not up yet. It is another Canine Cupids tale though. Meanwhile back to the Northern Lights 300 and the Two Rivers 100 and 200 (numbers are miles) races and some of my fave m ushers. And 'my' pet five pups I met at the Zirkle-Moore SP Kennel in August 2014 are running their first race!! Yep, I am bouncing off the walls. Hasta la manana!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

On we go--still more books!

I have come now to one of my favorites! Doggone Love was my second gay romance and the first of a number of tales that became The Canine Cupids. This story is also my all time number one best seller and its popularity still carries on to the recent past. While some older stories rarely sell now, this one has sales every quarter, without fail. Most of the other Canine Cupids tales do too. I'll feature the first two tonight. Eight of them are collected in print in two anthologies, Canine Cupids and Canine Cupids 2.  All can be bought at my page http://www.amberquill.com/store/m/137-Deirdre-O-Dare.aspx  (titles are listed in alphabetical order)

A little side bar to Doggone Love. At the time I wrote it, I had one Australian Shepherd, a male named Rico. I'd  had to have my late husband's old dog put to sleep a few weeks earlier and Dr Vann in this story was inspired but the substitute vet who helped me send Sadie to the Rainbow Bridge. Then, I was looking for a female Aussie to keep Rico company. In this tale, I named the hero's beloved stock dog "Dixie Belle". When I got my girl a month or so later, she was already named--yep, Belle. I called her Belle Starr because she was a sly little bandit when it came to getting food and treats, even sometimes those she was not supposed to have! Coincidence or clairvoyance? Who knows.

Blurb and Cover for Doggone Love:  Solitary rancher Damon Carhart expects to spend the
rest of his life alone. Then an injury to a beloved stock dog sends him to the nearest veterinary clinic for help. His crusty old veterinarian friend is away and, in his place, is a young doctor in whom Damon initially has no faith. Once he entrusts his canine friend to Eric Vann’s care, however, everything begins to change...
And once desire gets a bite on him, what can he do but go along for the wild ride?
Eric Vann has loved animals all his life, following in an uncle’s footsteps to become a veterinarian. He knows if he ever finds a soul-mate it will be another male. When Damon comes in, fierce in defense of his favorite dog, Eric is immediately captivated.
Can he overcome the other man’s instinctive resistance to the powerful attraction that begins almost at once?

The second Canine Cupids tale resulted from a joking dare by a friend and fellow Amber Quill author. She knew I was not really into small dogs and challenged me to make one the canine hero of a tale. I did  have two other friends who had Maltese so I chose that breed for my unlikely canine hero in The Maltese Terror. I used a Colorado blizzard to cause teh two guys to meet, a storm much like one I lived through while I lived at Falcon, a town outside Colorado Springs, back in the 1970s

Blurb and Cover for The Maltese Terror:
Landscape architect Nick LeGrande has never 
experienced a more disastrous trip! When he ends up stranded in a Colorado blizzard, he’s glad to have the company of his little canine buddy, Cedric, which circumstances forced him to bring along. Then a sexy Samaritan rescues them and Nick is introduced to a world he hardly knew existed...and is quickly enthralled.

Caleb Storm is a loner, a rancher whose Native American blood sets him a bit apart from most of his fellows. When a spring blizzard dumps Nick LeGrande and his tiny dog into Caleb’s life, he and his old stock dog Cheyenne hardly know what to make of their visitors. Caleb finds Nick very attractive but doubts such a successful and urbane man could have any interest in him. Their dogs, however, hit it off from the start and seem to conspire to get their masters together. Can a pair of canine cupids work the necessary magic?

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Back to the Books

No, I will not stop missing my friend for some time but life goes on for the living and I am a firm believer in that. My late husband and I had made a pact that the survivor would live, not merely exist and I've done my best to honor that for twelve and a half years. I hope all of my departed dear ones are looking down and feel at least some pride and pleasure in my small accomplishments.

Tonight I will cover two related Amber Heat tales (that is the m/f erotica line). The first is next as I go down the list so I will cover them both. Nellie's Rogue Stallion was my ninth release and a diversion from what I had written thus far since it was my first shape shifter tale. I am not too much into werewolves and some of the other popular shifter-critters so for my first effort, I chose a horse shifter! This story is told mostly in the heroine's POV although not in first person. She's a kind of True Grit type ranch girl, not much in awe of man, nature or animals. She's been raised by her father after her mother passed away. Her daddy is very protective, a situation she chafes at almost constantly. Will she ever have a beau, much less get married?  The cover is also one of my all time favorites so here it is along with the blurb.

Blurb: Nevada-raised Nellie Campbell despairs of ever finding love because her father, Jack, fiercely guards her chastity, keeping all virile men yards away from her. When she joins the hunt to capture a rogue stallion that has been stealing valuable mares from area ranchers, she learns Rogue Red is no ordinary horse. No way can she allow her father and the cowboys to kill or geld this magnificent creature. To help him escape, Nellie soon finds herself racing across the desert on the red stallion’s back, knowing there can be no return.
Yet all her father’s care to keep Nellie pure will now be for naught—because Rogue Red is also Steven Johns, descendant of a long line of shapeshifting were-horses. And as a man, he is even more gorgeous than he is as a horse!
Grief over the brutal slaying of his family has driven Steven to live in horse form for so long, his human side has almost been forgotten. Feisty yet charmingly naïve, Nellie reminds him there is more to life than leading his mares through the wilds while fighting off predators and angry ranchers.
But will Nellie's father ever abandon the chase with the ultimate goal of seeing Steven rendered harmless? It will take a tragedy and a heroic rescue to convince Jack Campbell that the right man for Nellie and the rogue stallion are both more than they seem...
 I really got caught up in the horse-shifter clan after I had written this story. I went back in time for the second tale to France in the 1700s to team another sheltered young woman with another dashing horse-shifter in Colette's Savage Stallion. Although I envision more tales of this magical race, they are yet in the idea and a few scenes stages. The next one, if I can get it done, will be back to the beginning where a prehistoric woman in Scythia (European steppe region) saves a mare and her foal from marauding wolves and is given the shifter gift by Epona, a Celtic horse goddess. It's about a third done so there is a good maybe it will appear in time if I can rehome these two tales or otherwise get an editor's interest! Here is the blurb for Colette's Savage Stallion, my 26th AQ release. The cover appears above.

Blurb:  Colette D'Estaing has adored Gaston, the horse master's eldest son, since they were both children. Now grown and of marriageable age, she must wed Charles de Fayette, an aristocratic and influential, yet foppish and dissolute friend of her father’s.
When her fiancé assaults her in the stable intent on raping her, however, a sleek and savage stallion comes to her rescue and kills the lecherous marquis. That’s when Colette learns that Gaston has inherited the ancient gift of shapeshifting into equine form.
Shocked and fearful, Colette urges Gaston to flee before he is accused of murder or witchcraft and put to death. But first she must convince him to take her virginity in one magical night of love...

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

One evening of silence

A friend passed away this morning and in her honor I will post a moment of silence here.  Her death was caused by ovarian cancer, a terrible disease that also took my mother. If you have lost a friend or relative to it, perhaps you might make a small donation to the American Cancer Society in memory of Daneal Cantor and your loved one as I shall be doing.
Go in peace and harmony, my friend. You are missed.

Monday, January 18, 2016

More Deirdre O'Dare Fiction

Treading Dangerous Ground was my first gay romance and my eighth release from Amber Quill. I mentioned it briefly in my discussion of Return to Atsileigh a few days ago. Now you get 'the rest of the story'. When I wrote this tale, I was still finding my way into writing heterosexual erotica. A group of AQ authors were talking in our yahoo group about the new trend in m/m romances and the possibility of doing some. I was initially of the opinion that I could not write one. Then a few days later, I began the day with an idea so urgent I wrote the first scene while I ate breakfast, using a small pocket sized tablet I used for my shopping lists!
From that first scene, which became  the real start of Treading Dangerous Ground, the story took shape. Using the same world but different characters although some with connections to the first two men, I later wrote Fire on Ice, and eventually Return to Atsileigh. I'm pretty sure there is yet one more story to tell which will wrap it all up! We'll see. And while I'm here, I will also feature Fire on Ice, my nineteenth AQ release and another Unifleet tale.

Here is the blurb and cover for Treading Dangerous Ground. You can find it at http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/1321-Treading-Dangerous-Ground.aspx


Seasoned Unifleet officer Jayce Hightower takes care of his troops. That includes supporting green soldier Balt Donovan through his first exposure to combat. What Jayce has not expected, however, is that the striking young man will soon come to dominate his dreams, stirring unfamiliar and disturbing desires.
Once Jayce learns Balt is similarly attracted to him, the situation starts to careen out of control, putting both of their careers in jeopardy. Jayce almost welcomes the hazardous assignment that sends him alone to a distant, dangerous world.
But when Jayce's mission is betrayed, Balt comes to his rescue. Will Jayce finally be able to accept the unconditional love Balt offers him?

And here's the blurb and cover of Fire on Ice. It is at http://www.amberquill.com/store/p/1320-Fire-On-Ice.aspx
Bard Welstaad is a model Uni-Fleet officer. He’s not sure what his unit is to accomplish, marching up an icy peninsula in the frozen hell of Gelada, but without his NCO, Gordon Farrell, he knows he can not keep the unit together fighting off Snow Wasps and the savage deadly cold. Not until tragedy strikes does Bard acknowledge the big sergeant means much more to him than simply being his right-hand man.
Gordon Farrell idolizes his captain as representing everything he reveres. His hero-worship of Bard has already turned into hidden passion, but until now, he has fought the impulse to act upon his feelings. The threat of imminent death as he fights to save Bard’s life, however, finally forces him to admit the strength of his desires.
With death stalking at their heels, the men can only hope to live long enough to share more than a single incredible night. Yet fate seems to conspire against them at every turn. Still, they cling to the frail hope that somehow their love will find a way to survive...


Sunday, January 17, 2016

More Back List Books!

Yes, the back list titles seem to be unending, no?  Not quite but there are quite a few to go yet. Moving forward in my earlier releases, I have reached #7, To Protect and ...Seduce? Yes, it is a 'cop' story and in a subtle way pays tribute to the cop next door in my personal world who became my life partner for thirty-two great years and the little girl who still calls me her "wicked step mother" with a big grin, even though she has a couple of grown daughters now herself. This tale was an EPIC finalist in its category in the year it was released, 2006.

Here is the blurb sand cover for this tale, one of my personal favorites.
With her young son, Amy has fled an abusive relationship. The thought that her ex and his crime-focused family will find her, terrifies her. A remote mining town in Arizona provides temporary refuge. Then she learns her next door neighbor is a cop, and what a cop! He’s a gorgeous single father. But back home most of the police officers were in the Stavros family’s pockets. Will Arizona cops be different enough to trust?
Jack is struggling to raise his motherless daughter and uphold the law in Azurite, Arizona. His new neighbor stirs his libido but she seems to have some fearsome secrets as well as a son about his daughter’s age. When the children form a friendship, Jack and Amy's worlds begin to converge. Can he put an end to her nightmare and also be the man she needs?

Now, stepping backward on my more recent releases, here is another 2014 release. This story has a humorous beginning. A group of Amber Quill authors were working on some feline shapeshifter tales. I was reluctant to take part using the excuse that I am allergic to cats and really do not know a lot about them. Then like a persist itch, I began to picture a hero who worked in a zoo and although allergic to the feline clan was drawn to and worked with them... As often happens, my characters in this story really threw me some curves as they began to share their tale so I could transcribe it! And so, Catastrophe was born!

Here is the blurb and cover for this story. 
Although veterinary technician Carlton is violently allergic to cats, he loves them with an undying passion, enough to tolerate miserable symptoms to keep working with the felines in the San Maribal Zoo. The cheetahs especially fascinate him. Then he meets a mysterious stranger who is evasive about why he’s in the zoo after hours, and nude! This man tells Carl there’s a cat inside him wanting to get out. That sounds really crazy, and the suggested way to make the shift happen sounds even crazier—but exciting.
Zyl is a member of the ancient shifter tribe, or Were-Kind. His people are working to enforce humane treatment of animals and save endangered species. Hearing of a planned raid by an extreme animal rights group to free the denizens of zoos, they realize this will be a catastrophe. Joining forces with regular humans to avert the problem will mean “coming out” as the powerful beings they are. Again, a potential disaster. Attracted against his better judgment, Zyl teams up with the cat lover he met under awkward circumstances only to discover a valuable ally and a soul mate...

Saturday, January 16, 2016

More Deirdre O'Dare Tales

I will feature two more stories tonight, an older one and a 2014 release. The first is hetero and the second one is gay.  By chance both are on the same page of my section: http://www.amberquill.com/store/m/137-Deirdre-O-Dare.aspx?pi=3ce

Randi's Hellacious Adventure took a big leap into the hot zone from Karola's Hunt and The Taming of Jaelle'n. It came about due to one of those "what if" questions that writers sometimes ask and then answer with a wide variety of results. I was considering near death experiences and suddenly began to picture a very unusual one and the result it might have on a young woman's life. Randi seems to have everything but she is not happy. Her love life with her nice fiance is very --well, boring! Then an automobile accident almost ends her life and she wakes up with a whole different perspective.IsS it just a wee bit tongue in cheek? Well maybe, but then maybe not too. BTW, the guy she meets is described as black but not African American; he is a jet black demon! Nothing similar out there for my cover artist to grab and use. :-(


Here is the blurb and the cover. Scottsdale, Arizona, princess Randi O’Neal, depressed over her lackluster love life, is heading home from a shopping trip when a monster truck demolishes her little sports car. When she awakes, she’s in a strange place, even hotter than familiar Arizona summers, where she meets an out-of-this-world sexy mentor.
While on this weird near-death experience, can she learn enough sexy tricks to fire up her staid MD fiancé and get the erotic thrills she craves? 


The newer story Red Tails in the Sunset  is one close to my heart in many ways. I have a dread of wild land fires begun when there was one near my home when I was twelve. I also have a huge admiration for the pilots who fly in with slurry or water or smoke jumpers to fight these dangerous fires. I watched such a plane take off from the small airport near my home one day and the title popped into my head. Soon I 'met' the pilot and Red Tails began to take shape. To me it is a very special tale. Even if he is gay, I am half in love with Blaine Darby! And I love the cover--those mesmerizing eyes! The story was dedicated to the firefighters killed in Arizona a few years back.
Blurb and cover: 
Former military pilot Blaine Darby carries a load of guilt and pain from the harm he may have caused in wartime. Now he seeks to earn some good karma by fighting wild land fires while holding on to his great love of flying. But reporters like young Daz Contreras scare him—one of the few things that do—because he shuns the public eye.
Freelance investigative journalist Daz Contreras is convinced terrorists are behind at least some of the wild land fires plaguing New Mexico. All he needs is enough proof to break the story. As he pursues leads, he begins to shadow pilot Blaine Darby and, in the process, develops a gigantic case of hero worship.
When Daz is allowed to ride with Blaine one time, he hopes the adventure will help him to uncover the proof he seeks. Yet when a near tragedy unexpectedly develops and Blaine puts his life on the line to save a trapped hotshot firefighting crew, Daz realizes he’s an eyewitness to what may be a bigger story than the one he planned. But will the reclusive Blaine actually allow Daz to report the news as he sees fit, even as they grow closer?

Friday, January 15, 2016

Still going back into releases--and an offer

First, before I forget, if anyone who is reading this blog sends me some kind of documentation showing they bought a copy of The Mule Man, I will send you an unedited .doc file copy of A Mule for a Princess which as I explained is a follow-on story though not a true sequel.

Okay tonight I will do one old release, actually my third and then one 2014 story.

The Taming of Jaelle'n was actually the first semi-erotic story I started playing with, just a bit before I started to write Karola's Hunt. I have to laugh as I was kind of prudish back in those days. As Gwynn Morgan I had been writing pg-13 level romances. I did not quite close the bedroom door but the love scenes were not very graphic and the language was squeaky clean! So I dipped a toe in and then took another step and finally just held  my nose and dove right in! Turned out to be a lot of fun.

Okay, I got this picture of a somewhat spoiled and strong willed princess in some fantasy medieval world who was captured and sold into slavery. She is bought by a man who among other businesses, buys and sells pleasure slaves! He is taken with her beauty and watches her training more closely than most of his purchases and decides to take it over himself.  So in the long run it is a question of who will tame who! There is some mild bondage and discipline--something I do not write much of since I am totally not into that personally--and a bit of "Midnight at the Oasis" as one reviewer mentioned. Mostly it is just fun.

Here is the blurb and the cover.
Taken captive and sold into slavery, Princess Jaelle'n has to make some swift adjustments in her attitude to survive. She is bought by a gorgeous but arrogant man who vows he can make her and a score of other female captives into prime pleasure slaves in one phase of the moon! Although she is determined to fight his efforts at taming and training her with all her hatred and will, his virile mastery proves irresistible. She eventually must succumb to the overwhelming attraction and lets herself start to love Aguilar only to learn she'll be sold again…
In spite of this new heartbreak, can she use her newly developed skills to tame a new master?
Set in an exotic world just a bit like ours may once have been, The Taming of Jaelle'n explores the fascinating physical and emotional byplay between two strong characters and the question of who will ultimately tame whom.

A Game of Hearts was a Sept 2014 release. This may be the most unusual story I have written because it delves into a notion that had haunted me for some time. I am a staunch supporter of the organ donor network and the idea of letting someone's death give a new lease on life to someone else. When my younger brother died early from an aneurysm, I signed the papers to allow anything that could be used to be taken prior to his cremation. I know at least his eyes gave someone new sight and I am happy for that. But what happens when a person receives an organ and goes on with his or her life? Can anything from the donor live on in terms or memory, personality or other aspects? That is the premise this tale explores. Reviews were mixed but most seem to feel it was a powerful tale. Here is the blurb and the cover. 

Blurb: Acclaimed photographer DeVore Weyrick lost the love of his life ten years ago, and when it came to his love life, became a recluse. Now, at one of the few social functions he steels himself to attend, he meets an amazing young man and suddenly begins to wonder whether he can find new life and new love. The game of hearts is always risky, but what if a part of your first love now lives within another man’s body?
Tim Hardesty was a preemie and always frail. As a teenager, an organ transplant was the only thing that could save him. Now grown to manhood, he is still struggling to break away from family ties and find a purpose for his life. It’s a thrill to meet the charismatic DeVore, an idol whose powerful photographs move many. But is this attraction his own or coming from the stranger’s heart now beating in his chest?

Thursday, January 14, 2016

More of Deirdre O'Dare's Stories

I had six releases in 2015, all with Amber Allure, the GLBT line. I'll feature the last two today.  Remember you can get them and others at http://www.amberquill.com/store/m/137-Deirdre-O-Dare.aspx?pi=3

The Mule Man was released in December. I'd been wanting to feature a mule or several in a story for along time. Years ago I was in business with my dad raising and training horses and mules mostly for trail riding and hunting or wilderness expedition use. I am a big booster of the long eared critters and delighted to see that in many 'horsey' circles they have become very popular. I think that is uber cool!

Anyway, here is the cover and blurb from The Mule Man. BTW, the yet unpublished A Mule for a Princess that I have talked about some is a follow-on to this story. I hope to get it in some publisher's queue very soon!

Blurb: Orville “Orr” Loveless is exactly where he knows he belongs, rescuing and training mules.
Despite their reputation, which Orr feels is undeserved, he knows mules are smart, sure-footed, and great mounts for trail riding and outdoor adventures. He has no tolerance for anyone who mistreats them or any other animals but he can’t always give such folks the “what for” they deserve. The only thing he lacks is a human partner to share the work and the fun, and he knows his lifestyle is not likely to attract one.
Jase Keller is drawn back to New Mexico where his forgotten roots have remained. His high finance job is about to destroy him and he desperately needs a big change of pace for this vacation. The only problem is, Orr Loveless doesn’t seem to want to take him on a wilderness trip and is determined to send him packing.
It’s the opposite of the farm boy seeing the city for the first time. Jase sees another life and it’s the one he wants. The only trick is to convince Orr that Jase can be the partner he needs. But how can he persuade a stubborn mule man?

Just prior to that, Midnight Cowboys was released in October, part of a collection about the "sexy" sixties.I lived through that era but it is surprising how much you forget. Going back was an adventure as I lived it with my two heroes in this one. I was much more like Jerry, the conservative small town college student, but college can be a very educational experience! Even if you were not even a twinkle in your dad's eye in 1969, this will provide a fun look at this significant era in our past.  Sex, drugs and rock n' roll were a happening thing.

Blurb: Two young men from different backgrounds end up roommates at a state college in west Texas during the latter part of the turbulent ’60s. In the course of their developing relationship, both get an education while treading near the edge of risk and ruin in a time when “anything goes.”
Riki is the black sheep of a wealthy family with one final chance to avoid the draft or disinheritance. His dream is to become a hot guitarist with a rock band, but his weakness for recreational drugs might become a stumbling block. Jerry is a true son of Bible Belt America, happy to be in college and perhaps rise above the lower middle class level of his family. He has to grow rapidly through his shock and meld into the times that had not yet found his small-town roots.
When the two men form an unlikely friendship, will it develop into a deeper bond as they experience drugs, sex, and rock ’n’ roll? And will that bond bring them to the brink of disaster, or lead them down the path to maturity and knowledge?

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Looking Back at 2015 titles

Continuing with the Deirdre O'Dare back list, I'm going to feature two titles from last year in today's post. Remember, you have to get them by March 30, 2016 and best location to do it is: http://www.amberquill.com/store/m/137-Deirdre-O-Dare.aspx?pi=4

A Cop and A Con grew out of a remark by a fairly well known writer some years back at a workshop: If your hero is a firefighter, your heroine --or other hero--should be an arsonist. That sounds kind of foolish at first glance but think about it. In a love story there needs to be a nearly insurmountable obstacle standing between te two parties and their happy ever after. If the two main characters follow conflicting professions, that;s a big barrier. So, a cop and a convict...
As I often do, I found a couple of canine characters worked their way into the tale too and at times darn near steal the scene. This will e one of my long term favorittes, I think, because I put a lot of heart into it. It's one I will try to rehome but that may take awhile. Here is the cover and the blurb.

Blurb: When a cop and a newly released convict cross paths, few cons can expect anything but a cold shoulder and mistrust. Struggling back to the home he knows no longer exists, Ike Hernandez meets a cop who seems to be different. He isn’t sure he can believe the kindness he receives will continue. Still, he wants to learn to trust again and regain his lost self-respect.
Perry Parker became a law enforcement officer because he wanted to help people. He’d seen first-hand the results of poverty, alcohol and drug abuse, a crumbling economy and the insidious effects of peer pressure and bad examples on the youth. He’d watched hardship trickle down to crush the youngest and weakest. He found there was not a lot he could do, but now and then he discovered someone he could help. Would the lost man with the little dog that he picked up one bitter cold and stormy night be one of them?
Pursuing tales about a new drug dealer in his county, Perry starts to doubt the man he’s befriended, but he still feels Ike is a decent person. When the real dealers seek to take advantage of the convict’s past, it takes Perry and his unofficial canine partner and the little stray Ike had adopted to save the day. Can a cop, a con, and two dogs make an unorthodox family?
The other 2015 release I want to share is Return to Atsileigh. It is a spin off and kind of a sequel to my very first m/m romance which was so well received it changed my writing focus in many ways. I had never tried anything remotely like science fiction, although I have been an avid sci fi reader for years,  and I really did not think I could write a gay romance! Treading Dangerous Ground changed that in a huge way. I knew there was more to the story but it took awhile to make the story work. Finally I got 'er done! Here is the blurb and cover. 

Blurb: The sequel to Amber Allure’s Best Seller Treading Dangerous Ground...
Some years ago, Hightower’s Betrayal ended the existing settlement of old world Native Americans on the obscure world of Atsileigh. But was Hightower the betrayer or the betrayed?
Floyd Jaxon, Nathan No Horses, and Jamison Hightower, nephew of the earlier Hightower, meet as cadets at the Unifleet Training base. They alternately razz each other and share in some steamy interludes as they are drawn into the growing plot to mark Hightower’s Betrayal with a return to Atsileigh.
Can their budding friendship withstand the dangers and demands they must face? Will Nate’s contempt for the Hightower name destroy any chances for a long-term connection among them? The future looms ahead, filled with threat and promise. How the three young men grow to deal with it and each other will impact them all...

Monday, January 11, 2016

More from Deirdre's back list

My second release at Amber Quill, Pickup Man  was the first of a series of three tales that were closely related, so I am going to hit all three this time. The series was titled The Rodeo Girls and the plots center around three women who are close friends that found love in various aspects of their favorite sport. The covers, of course, feature the hunky cowboys they hooked up with. The second tale, Portrait of a Cowboy was my fourth release and Cowboy First Aid was my fifth.  They are stand alone tales but can best be read in a group!

They are available in ebook form and in the print anthology Daring Delights. Buy them at http://www.amberquill.com/store/m/137-Deirdre-O-Dare.aspx

Here are the covers and the blurbs follow each one.

 High school librarian Jana's best friends Kim and Tracy accuse her of being a professional spinster, still single at twenty-seven. On a bet with them, the weekend of the big rodeo, Jana goes to the favorite nightspot of the rodeo crowd to try to pick up a cowboy. Before the night is over, she knows the steak dinner she'll win from her friends is by far the least of her prizes. Once she gets acquainted with Ty, the phrase "ride 'em cowboy" takes on a whole new meaning. She just might run her brand on this one!
 Sports photographer Kim is down on cowboys. Since her divorce, she is determined to go it on her own. Most of the rodeo crowd knows she won't date a performer. When she literally trips over hunky Wolf Voegler, however, she has to rethink her rule. Swept away by his gorgeous looks and his European charm, she rationalizes: surely one dinner date won't hurt…or even one unforgettable night of passion. Before it is over, though, she finds herself wanting more than just a portrait of this cowboy as a keepsake..

EMT Tracey is down on cowboys—they live on the road and any day can suffer a crippling or fatal accident. Burned by her trucker ex-husband’s infidelity, she feels love and a traveling life style can never mix. When she picks up Skip Horton after he’s been trampled by two horses, she can’t help but notice his great physique. Then he awakens in the ambulance and steals a kiss. She’s torn between attraction and wrath.Damn randy cowboys! Will they never quit flirting?
When her impulsive offer ends with him spending the night at her home, the attraction explodes. This cowboy, even injured, can make her feel things she’s never felt before. But won’t he be gone tomorrow? She doesn’t dare let lust overrule her common sense, much less admit her feelings could be anything deeper. But how can she help wanting more and more and more when this cowboy provides first aid for her wounded heart and self-esteem?

Saturday, January 9, 2016

My first and most recent titles

My first Amber Quill title was Karola's Hunt, which was one of the contest winners in 2004, the first year a contest was held to discover some new writers to add to their regulars. By odd coincidence, I got the email to let me know twelve years to the day from the date the firm will close its doors and site.

This was a fairly mild erotic tale but you have to recall that things have changed a bit in the passing years and we've kept pushing the envelope! It is still sexy and a read a bit out of the ordinary! It was called an example of "classy" erotica, spicy and explicit without being at all crass or crude.

Blurb: Karola, daughter of Diana, is totally innocent and wild, having never left the forest where she has grown up. Then one day she encounters an intruder, someone who looks a bit like her but also very different. In Damien she finds her first human friend and much, much more. Before the day is over, she has discovered what it means to be female as she is awakened to the delights of her sexuality and the first stirring of love.
But how can Karola ensure Damien will return again to play more of these magical games with her?

My most recent story is a gay romance, which has been the principle genre in which I have written for the past several years. It is a nostalgic contemporary, not quite far enough into the past to be historical but not in the twenty-first century, either. The tale is set in 1949 and that era posed some challenges in presenting a gay relationship at a time when attitudes were far less tolerant and homosexuality was still illegal in most places. Still, I enjoyed writing it and paid a kind of tribute to the magazine that was a way for me to find some friends long before the internet dating scene was even imagined! So here is Thank You, Ranch Romances

Blurb: Rancher Wade is struggling to hold his life together after his wife’s death leaves him with two small children as well as a ranch to run. In desperation, he puts a letter in a pulp magazine, announcing that he’s seeking a housekeeper and nanny to help him manage his home. The last thing he expects, however, is the young man who steps off the train in response to the ad.
Darnell is at the end of his rope. The war is over and jobs are hard to find, especially to one who has few skills other than cooking and keeping house, learned while he helped his abandoned mother keep their family intact. The letter he finds in a discarded magazine seems a godsend, so he jumps at the opportunity. It doesn’t take long to fall in love with young Ben and Winnie, but he also develops a huge crush on the rugged and manly Wade, who seems to be everything Darnell is not. Dare he dream that Wade might find him attractive, too?
In the 1940s, the vernacular used toward people such as Darnell are crude and insulting. Prejudice abounds, and he feels its keen cuts. Can he make himself a place in the lives of the family he has adopted, or will hate and suspicion send him fleeing?