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About Choosing Your Novel’s Title by Akinyi Prinzessin von K’Orinda-Yimbo (A P von K’Ory)

I read an article by Chuck Sambuchino about how to choose a novel/book’s title, and it reminded me of my own inadequacies in this task.

I remembered when Bruce Cook edited my first novel back in 2010, then titled Jungle Habits, Bruce said (to put it loosely): Nope, this title doesn’t do the book justice. This book is more than Jungle and Habits; it’s all about tradition and the desire to adhere to them in a modern changing world, for a young African girl torn between modernity and her traditional African/Kenyan/Luo upbringing.

Bang!

I changed the title to Bound to Tradition, now a trilogy and the book that won me the Netherlands PADDI prize:  Achievers’Award for Writer of the Year 2013.

Another title I had to change was Helena’s Secret, which does involve the heroine’s deep-seated secret about her biological heritage that she hides not only from the world but even from her own self. It is a secret that has become a huge roadblock in the fulfilment of young

Helena’s romantic yearnings and makes her give romance a wide berth. Until true love steps between her and her roadblock and demands full attention. My mentor and editor extraordinaire, Kenneth Mulholland, called the title “pedestrian, like The Day Kate Went to the Market”. And I changed the title, first to Secret Shades of Fading Blood, then to simply Secret Shades (now a two-book novel – Secret Shades Aroused, and Secret Shades

Revealed). Secret Shades as a title is short and memorable, and a lot more intriguing because it leaves that potent word “Secret” in place while adding in “Shades” which conjures up anything from sunglasses to ghosts. In truth, the “secret” is about Helena’s biological

heritage and concerns the colour of her skin.

Apparently, even F. Scott Fitzgerald was asked by his publisher to change the title of his novel, which we all know as The Great Gatsby. The famous writer’s original title for the book was Trimalchio in West Egg. Would you have been drawn into buying a book with that title?

Readers, as a rule of thumb, are drawn to a book not only by its cover but also by what the title conjures up in their minds, coupled by the book cover. Not an easy task for a new writer. After all, we are writers, creators of the world’s mushrooming in the space between our ears, not experts in luring other people’s tastes and preferences to our lair so that they come and consort with us. At least I’m not the think-of-the-readers-first kind of a writer. I have my world in my heart and soul and it screams at me to create it. I want to share it with everybody, even the unwilling, but won’t take offence if some people don’t love my baby and don’t see its beauty and merits.  All else is shut out when I create. I’m in labour, alone at home. I’m not thinking about how many copies will be bought and by whom. I’m thinking, “I have this baby in me and it’s time to give birth to it and nurture it to maturity”. It’s a desire and a temptation

I can’t resist. It’s addictive and has a pull beyond my “common sense” arena.

My writing is heavily tinged with my own Euro-Afrocentric upbringing and cultural heritage that is includes Kenya, Egypt, India, German and French. All tinged with the innermost me.

That’s why it is ever so crucial for us writers to have an editor and a publisher to take care of “business”, leaving us the time and peace to create and nurture our creations to maturity.

 

Blurb: Golden Shana: The Chase (Book 1)

An evening at the opera house La Scala in Milan twirled the lives of five people into a web of intrigues, heartaches, human hunts, loss and revenge.

Roman: I never chased after a woman. It was always the other way around. Then I caught a glimpse of the woman I would kneel for, at the opera, and I didn’t even know her name. But I determined to find her if it took me the rest of my life.

Shana: He stood in the room with her. The frisson in the currents freaking between them was as solid as a steel portal. The mutual force of predator and prey blasted its way into her core … her soul … Danger. Keep far away from him.

Marie: Some men were born to rule the world; others were born to ruin it. Roman Alastair Northcott Broughton Castell was born to do both. But she loved him and awaited his baby.

Alyssa: He was the lover she wouldn’t tire of. Roman had something so damned perilous about him he was addictive. Who gets addicted to safe and riskless? Not her.

Grieg/Phoenix: Had His Girl interpreted that Friday night as abuse? He’d only done what she wanted – protection of her cherished innocence.

 

Excerpt from Golden Shana: The Chase (Book 1)

What a difference a day makes… And it hadn’t been a day. It had been an evening in Milan. Brief moments of an evening. I didn’t care about the consequences to whomever. Through my obsession with Svadishana I became aware of the fact that I was a person. A human being, not an almighty god, with all the baggage that comes with being that. I too – eureka! – had a heart pumping white and red corpuscles through my veins. Blood, not icicles.

Was it love I felt for Svadishana? A woman I’d spoken three whiny words – Please call me! – to? Was it more than simple lust and desire? Did I want to possess more than just her body?

Pondering these questions alone was so unlike me. That woman had turned me into an alien even unto my own self. What I felt, my inner voice said, was more than the thrill of the hunt. More than lust, desire, need, passion, the excitement of possession, and subjugation.

Of course all that was part of it. But the basis or the source, the seedbed on which all that sprouted and was growing to full blossom in me, could well be something else.

When I thought of her, saw her image from Milan in my mind, watched how she moved in long smooth strides in YouTube, my brow beaded with sweat. I couldn’t pull my gaze away from the few photos I’d fished out of the Internet. Group photos at a family birthday or the authorized biography of her father. Her movements in a YouTube conference clip were springy and powerful even in their smoothness. She exuded strength all over the place, laughing, talking, gesticulating.

A breath-taking beauty. Such beauty that I dared not believe it at times.

And brains to go with it.

In love or not, I knew what I wanted and Svadishana was the answer. I wanted her and would do anything short of suicide to get her. Who knows – perhaps when it came to that as the only means available, I’d really murder too. I didn’t in the least care about the consequences, as long as they got me to where I wanted to get to.

Svadishana’s arms and knickers and… heart?

What obsession, Roman. Get back to real.

No chance. Real was Svadishana.

 

Blurb: Golden Shana: The Capture (Book 2)

Roman finally gets together with Shana. But he finds himself wedged between three women and the man intent on killing him because of Shana. And there’s the secret of Marie’s unborn baby.

Roman: I wanted to eat all of her. Even within that fortress I longed to erect around her to hold her captive in, to keep her away from men not worthy of the sight of her, I’d devour her.

Shana: Roman was deadly sex. She had no antigenic for immunity against him. Instead she lay there on his bed, in an impossible state of sluttish disarray, holding her breath.

Marie: “So you didn’t bring your rich old cow with you.” The bitch was ten years older than her, years older than Roman himself. Weren’t men supposed to prefer younger women?

Alyssa: She was not going to let Roman treat her like a hole in the air. He started this triangle and she was going to make it equilateral.

Grieg/Phoenix: His philosophy stated that peace was bondage, and war was freedom. His Girl was his territory, and no other man’s.

 

Excerpt from Golden Shana: The Capture (Book 2)

I picked her up and carried her like a bride. Or a sleeping child. She nuzzled between my neck and shoulder. I kicked the door shut behind us.

We were both ablaze, and I needed to check that, wind it down a notch.

“Like to lie down on the sofa and cuddle till we both slow down a bit?”

“Bed.” Her voice vibrated against my neck.

We left the entrance hall behind us. The flames kept on leaping.

“Overriding my sensible decision?”

“Yes. Bed.” Tremulous once, tremulous twice.

“Just got me, and you want to run away with it.” I bore her past the living room.

“Bed.”

“I’m getting a restraining order on you.” I took the first stair, chest tight again.

She lifted her head off my shoulder and her Huskies sent megawatts to my blues. Unveiled desire. My balls clenched. At this degree I risked coming where I stood with her in my arms. I was tempted to close my eyes and summon my control. For the first time I felt life surge through my veins for a woman, the whole woman, not just sex with her. Again, I experienced that powerful instinct in me to guard and protect her, the fragile and most precious thing in my life. She had a pull on every cell in me. Her masses of loose curls gave warm slaps through my chinos to my hip, sending the sergeant into planning guerrilla warfare for its freedom.

The witch. I was hypnotized. I had to stop climbing the stairs and get my head cleared. She was as necessary to me as the air I breathed, yet she knocked that air straight out of my lungs. Her naked desire was intoxicating. Insanity mingled with reality. I really had her back in my arms. She came to me, came to my home for the first time. And ordered Bed, not a mutual shower. She was the first and only woman to take me to this Newland. She was my perfect balance. I’d fallen hard and didn’t even want to get back up. It happens to the worst of us ingrained rogue playboys.

The Huskies still pinned me in Newland. “Skirting around the deed, are we?”

“Protecting my golden goddess.”

For sheer survival, I broke the lock of our eyes and started up the stairs again.

Blurb: Golden Shana: The Untouchable (Book 3)

Roman doesn’t even want a harem. But the harem relentlessly seeks him. No sooner has Shana left Roman than Grieg/Phoenix is marking time on Roman’s door, out for a war, not a fight, over Shana. And so is Marie, whose pregnancy Roman still keeps a secret.

Roman: I loved owning women. Then I found my woman. But she would never be owned, not even by the gods. She left me. Still, her dangerous admirer and I began wars over her, not merely street fisticuffs.

Shana:  Roman scares me in every way and the fear excites me. I’m brainless in his arms, brainless just from thinking about him. He makes me navigate so many labyrinthine passages and secret doors that I’d never even been aware of before. My body knelt and wept for him. My common sense made me flee from him while I could.

Marie: I sold Roman my heart and soul. Only to realise my body had not been consulted, and was therefore out for war.

Alyssa: I really got all that about Roman. The super-ink indelibility of him, the substance of him that stamped his four-figure-euro Ferragamo Oxfords, the supernatural charisma that rocketed him all the way up there with Lucifer. His square would never fit my round. But hope springs eternal, right?

Grieg: “If I have whoever your girl is, why don’t you simply come over and take me off her or her off me?” Roman had not reacted like a man who had received that damning message. Over the phone, he’d sounded as if he didn’t have a single feather ruffled. Time to start the war.

 

Excerpt from Golden Shana: The Untouchable (Book 3)

I heard him change the phone to the other ear. “Castell, you’re a kid running a billion-euro crib, you pervert.”

My system actually waged wars for me to jump out of my skin. Control, Castell.

“Oh, yes. I’m about as straight as the U-bend under a sink, fuckwit. So is this the problem? A pissing contest based on having some beef about your wallet being a little anorexic in comparison? Have I got that bracketed?” I heard him swallow again. I decided on a blind knock on that, although for all I knew he was drinking water. “By the way, I’d ease up on the drink. Otherwise you won’t manage to solve the square root of bugger all, let alone remember if you have any other name but Sggirb.”

“I know you right up to your fucking perve room, Castell. I delivered the CD—had the CD delivered – right into your fucking office, practically into your hands. You know nothing about me. So you better watch your smart mouth.”

“Ah, you thought you’d simply storm the Bastille that’s my home and be discreet about it, then slink into my office building and show me the dot over the i that amounts to your balls? You’re right, I know nothing about you. You’re not even in my periphery, private or public.”

“I’m not a ball of yarn to your kitten, so watch your fucking mouth, Castell!”

Just to keep him put off his stroke, “Who would you say has all the tools for annihilation, fuckwit, the kitten or the yarn?”

“You’re lucky I’m—”

“Luck is basically mythical. Reality is called chance. How about we meet?”

He said nothing.

Not good, because now that I was screwing him hard, I needed to keep up the pace. So I said, “You could make it your mud hole or you could haul your arse back here to my city. Then we roll up our sleeves, or whisk off our T-shirts. Then we start doing a little tribute to Muhammad Ali out in the Congo with Joe Frazier.”

He said nothing. I heard him swallow at intervals during the silence. “I’m rapt with attention, fuckwit Sggirb, so let’s have a date and then – to quote your countryman –you are an American – float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.”

“You think you’re so fucking cool…” He rumbled the word out long: Coooooollll…

“Oh, I don’t just think it.”

“Just keep your hands off her, Castell. Keep your hands off My Girl!”

“If I have whoever your girl is, why don’t you simply come over and take me off her or her off me?” I paused for a reply, none came. “Or is this the sheep being docile until they get utterly famished?” Another pause. Silence, so I continued, “You sound like you wouldn’t find a clitoris if you were armed with a compass, street map and a fucking NASA telescope.”

“You can’t intimidate me, Castell.”

Which only exposed to me the wound I’d ripped open in him. Time to add chilli.

 

BUY LINKS IN KINDLE – Please note that the books are also available in paperbacks:

UK Kindle: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Golden-Shana-Chase-von-KOry-ebook/dp/B00WA7M3OC/

UK Kindle: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Golden-Shana-Capture-von-KOry-ebook/dp/B06X1DGGMZ/

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Golden-Shana-Untouchable-von-KOry-ebook/dp/B07H1YY28C#reader_1725967073

US Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Golden-Shana-Capture-von-KOry-ebook/dp/B06X1DGGMZ/

US Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Golden-Shana-Untouchable-von-KOry-ebook/dp/B07H1YY28C/

UK Untouchable PB: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Golden-Shana-Untouchable-von-KOry/dp/1725967073

 

Website http://www.Akinyi-princess.de

Twitter  https://www.twitter.com/Apky11162

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Amazon Author Page

https://www.amazon.co.uk/A-P-Von-KOry/e/B00MDHD7ZS

*****

GIVEAWAY!

Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway. The tour dates are here: http://writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/a-p-von-kory/

Enter for your chance to win a Kindle copy of one of A P von K’Ory’s backlist books!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***

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How I Came to be a Writer – Guest Post by Freda Lightfoot (@fredalightfoot) #giveaway

Thank you so much for inviting me on your blog. I’ll tell you a little about myself.

How I came to be a writer.
I longed to become a writer but this was considered rather an exotic ambition so my parents encouraged me to get an education first. No one in my family had ever stayed on for further education before, so I was elected to blaze the trail. I qualified as a primary teacher and worked for a number of years. I married in 1969 and a few years later we moved to the Lake District with our two daughters. I then ran a bookshop for ten years and secretly wrote late in the night.

Later, when I sold my bookshop, I tried anything and everything. Short stories, serials, a children’s novel, picture scripts and a few Mills & Boon contemporaries, although I gained more rejection slips than cheques. The aim was to send material out faster than it came back, which wasn’t easy. We had a brilliant postal service and all the rejections would come bouncing back with remarkable speed. But at last the day came when I sold my first short story to D.C.Thompson. It was a red letter day indeed. That was also the name of the magazine, now defunct. Following this breakthrough I seemed to develop the knack for I went on to sell many more stories. With renewed confidence I tried again for Mills & Boon, this time with a historical, Madeiran Legacy, which was accepted. I wrote five historical romances as Marion Carr for Mills & Boon which greatly taught me my craft. Only later did I have sufficient confidence to try for the mainstream fiction market, selling my first saga, Luckpenny Land, to Hodder & Stoughton in 1993 on a three book contract.

I was fortunate back in 2010 to get the rights of many of my backlist reverted from a couple of publishers. Hearing about ebooks in the US I set out to learn how to produce them, finally achieved that and regularly self-published some. Sales began quite slowly, which didn’t trouble me as I was also writing for another publisher. But once Kindles arrived in the UK in Christmas 2011, I must say my sales shot up surprisingly well and I was amazed by my success. As a consequence in 2013, I was contacted by Amazon Lake Union for an interview, then later offered a contract by them. My first book with them, The Amber Keeper, soon sold over a hundred thousand, and has now sold more. Such a thrill. Selling ebooks is now much higher for me than print books. My second book was Forgotten Women, which is also doing quite well. Now comes publication of Girls of the Great War, which I loved writing too.

This book was such fun to write, if sad and heartbreaking when Cecily lost the love of her life. She was concerned for herself, and also for her sister Merryn, who was engrossed with a young man Cecily did not approve of. He was not an easy young man.

*****

Excerpt from Girls of the Great War:

Later that afternoon Merryn eagerly hurried over to the Palace Theatre just a short distance away. The young drummer was fully engaged in rehearsal, the bandleader constantly hammering his baton to stop the musicians playing while he issued more instructions to them. She knew she would have to wait a while before he was free, so taking a seat she watched him. He was a cheerful young man with reddish hair, soft grey eyes that were constantly alight behind his spectacles, a slightly gap-toothed smile and a chiselled chin. Being a bit of a joker, Johnny Wilcox was great fun. When finally he was allowed a break, Merryn offered to buy him an afternoon tea at a nearby café.

‘There’s something I’d like to discuss with you over a little tiffin,’ she said with a smile.

‘That sounds good,’ he grinned, his expression filled with curiosity.

As they sat enjoying tea and biscuits, Merryn told him of her sister’s plan to create a small concert party and entertain the troops in France.

He looked a little taken aback. ‘Blimey, that’ll be a challenge. I wouldn’t want anything dreadful to happen to either of you two girls.’

‘I don’t think we’ll be anywhere near the front line where the fighting is going on. We just plan to entertain the soldiers at their bases. I know you appreciated how Cecily discovered her talent to sing. Oh, and by the way, I can play an accordion.’

He gave another wide grin. ‘What a brick you are, a real sport. As you know, I play drums and cymbals, so can I come too?’

Merryn blinked in surprise, amazed by this instant offer, having fully expected she’d need to persuade him. ‘You most certainly can. I was about to ask if you’d be interested, as we’d welcome your support. I doubt there’ll be any wages paid since we’ll be volunteers fed and accommodated by the army.’

He creased his lips into a pout then gave a little smirk. ‘I’ll do my best to accept that fact. You’re a girl with great talent, as is Cecily. I’d love to work with you both.’

The weather being sunny he walked with her to the beach, talking about the music they loved to play and how long it had taken each of them to learn these skills. ‘I’ve been playing drums all my life, ever since Dad bought me one for Christmas when I was ten. It kept me sane when I was suffering his loss.’

‘Oh, how dreadful. How did that happen? I know very little about your past.’

‘I was born in Barnsley in Yorkshire; part of a working class family who became even poorer after Dad was tragically killed in a mining accident. Such bloody bad luck. Following his death my mam worked as a cleaner, earning barely enough money to feed her six children, all of them younger than me. I eventually was able to help by getting myself a job playing my drum kit at a local pub. I was so thrilled with Dad’s present that I was determined to improve it and learn how to play well. Thankfully I succeeded.’

‘Good for you, Johnny, I’m glad to hear that. My father sadly drowned in the Thames when we were quite young, although how that happened has never been explained to us and we have little memory of him. Queenie refuses to say anything on the subject, not even explain why her marriage went wrong.’

‘My mam didn’t talk much about her early life either. Far too distressing for her.’

Merryn decided that they had a great deal in common and could be well suited to work together, both being musicians. ‘I’m delighted to hear that you wish to join our team.’

‘Why would I not, when you’re so attractive?’

Merryn rolled her eyes in amusement, having no belief in her own looks. She saw herself as quite plain, a little too round and simply practical, interested mainly in fashion, sewing, make-up and hairstyles. Cecily had always been the pretty one with talent and plenty of young men falling for her, whereas she’d never found a boy who really took a shine to her. Merryn adored her sister and felt quite proud of her famous mother too, readily willing to deal with Queenie’s problems. His next words startled her out of those thoughts.

‘Can I give you a little kiss of thanks,’ Johnny murmured.

‘I’m not sure that would be a good idea,’ she stuttered. He was a most pleasant young man, if a little flirtatious.

‘I must confess that I’ve always felt the need for more closeness between us.’ Taking hold of her hand he gave it a gentle little kiss.

*****

Blurb
Cecily Hanson longs to live life on her own terms—to leave the shadow of her overbearing mother and marry her childhood sweetheart once he returns from the Great War. But when her fiancé is lost at sea, this future is shattered. Looking for meaning again, she decides to perform for the troops in France.

Life on the front line is both rewarding and terrifying, and Cecily soon finds herself more involved—and more in danger—than she ever thought possible. And her family has followed her to France. Her sister, Merryn, has fallen for a young drummer whose charm hides a dark side, while their mother, Queenie—a faded star of the stage tormented by her own secret heartache—seems set on a path of self-destruction.

As the war draws to a close and their hopes turn once again to the future, Cecily and Merryn are more determined than ever to unravel the truth about their mother’s past: what has she been hiding from them—and why?

Buy links:

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2wKaX2y

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2rGc528

*****

My Biog
I was born in a small mill town in Lancashire. My mother comes from generations of weavers, and my father was a shoe-repairer. I still remember the first pair of clogs he made for me. After several years of teaching, I opened a bookshop in Kendal, Cumbria. And while living in the rural Lakeland Fells, rearing sheep and hens, I turned to writing. I wrote over fifty articles and short stories for magazines such as My Weekly and Woman’s Realm, before finding my vocation as a novelist and became a Sunday Times Bestselling author. I’ve now written over forty-eight novels, mostly sagas and historical fiction, my three latest books, including Girls of the Great War, out in May are published by Amazon Lake Union. I spend warm winters living in Spain, and the rainy summers in Britain.

Website: www.freda@fredalightfoot.co.uk

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Freda-Lightfoot-Books/149641371839646

Twitter: @fredalightfoot

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/448774.Freda_Lightfoot

My Blogspot: http://www.fredalightfoot.blogspot.com/

If you wish to be kept up to date on new titles and contests, sign up on my website http://www.fredalightfoot.co.uk  to subscribe to my Newsletter: I only send out 4 or 5 a year so your inbox won’t be flooded.

*****

GIVEAWAY!

Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway. The tour dates are here:  http://writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/freda-lightfoot-3/

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Why Greenhouses are Sexy by Jo Henny Wolf (@JoHennyWolf @sinfulpress)

When I started writing The Black Orchid, appearing in the Sinful Pleasures Anthology coming out on August 20th, the only thing I knew was that I wanted to set it in a greenhouse.

There’s just something so alluring about gardening. A gardener has a deep connection with the earth, and growing things requires a certain amount of magic (I know, because I have none of that; thumbs as black as charcoal, that’s me). As a gardener, you spend your days with your hands buried in soil, covered in dirt. Stepping into a greenhouse is like entering another realm. The air is thick with humidity, green with the fragrance of plants and soil. I love that smell, the earthiness of it.

A greenhouse is a place so brimming with life that it feels perfect to have it as the setting for an act that worships life. And that’s how Baines’ Orchid Conservatory was born: a Victorian era greenhouse housing not only a veritable jungle and filled with rare orchids, but also an ecosystem of insects, pollinators, pests, and predators. I just had to get my characters in there.

I’m a very visual planner, and most of my stories start with an image forming in my mind. Fingertips grazing the line of a jaw, lips brushing the inside of a knee, a rumpled man in a suit kneeling in the murky light of a greenhouse, his cheek streaked with dirt. There is something delicious about the idea of a man in a suit, whose pristine elegance has suffered from a passionate encounter.

I’m also drawn to strange and twisted stories, to fairytales with hearts of darkness and rotting teeth, so, amidst all the green, I could see tokens of death. Sex reminds us of our mortality as we celebrate life; it reminds us of loss as we lose ourselves to ecstasy. That’s the other side of gardening: in the constant renewal of life, decay is forever lurking close to it.

Consequently, my characters couldn’t be just gardeners and orchid collectors. They had to reflect the duality of life and death, the conflict and suspense arising from the decay within the ripeness of life.

For this reason, Donn Black is a bringer of death, a king of the underworld. He is a meticulous man with great attention to detail, and he has to be in his line of work as a contract killer. He detests chaos, so when he meets Poppy Baines, the first thing he notices about her is the chaos that clings to her. He doesn’t know that she’s more than the harmless gardener she presents to the world, so when he finds himself pulled into a sexy game for a rare orchid, he doesn’t resist. The game is about more than just a black orchid, however, and bizarre flower mantises, butterflies, and beetles aren’t the only creatures poised to feast on death in this gothic greenhouse.

Neither Donn nor Poppy are vulnerable or redeemable characters, and that’s part of their intrigue for me. Donn is a killer with structure, someone who knows who he is and is comfortable with that. Poppy, on the other hand, is passionate and takes what she wants, even if it’s a stranger in a suit asking for a black orchid.

I find myself perpetually drawn to stories of imperfect characters, of humans finding themselves in impossible situations and not always making the right choices. After publishing Salt, my erotic retelling of the fairytale “Love like Salt,” late last year, my next project has been to work on a retelling of “The She-Wolf”, a short Croatian fairytale with an animal bride and a lot of issues – which is why it fascinates me so much. Until this story is done, however, I am continuing to publish short stories in between. You can find out more about my stories over at my website.

*****

Excerpt of “The Black Orchid”

Sinful Pleasures

Poppy smirked, with a sparkle in her eyes that made him feel transparent and naked. He stuck a finger into his shirt collar to get some air onto his heated skin. It was entirely too hot in this hellhole of a greenhouse.

“Maybe you should take off your coat before you collapse,” she prompted gently. Donn’s cheekbones burned right through his skin as he followed her suggestion and shrugged out of his coat, folding it and depositing it out of the way on an empty rack attached to the table, while she plucked another black orchid from her tree shelf. She placed it side by side with the first plant. “Mostly, I just split them into clones, since I have already reached perfection with this breed. I used to pollinate though, to get this dark black.”

She waved him closer, and Donn followed her order. It was like a reward when she placed her hand on his arm, and another jolt of electricity tingled through him, sizzling hot in his lower belly. The heaviness in his groin increased.

“Give me one of the toothpicks from over there, please,” she murmured, leaning closer, and Donn sucked in air like a drowning man who’d broken through the water. His lungs only filled with more of the orchid’s earthy fragrance. As he reached for the toothpicks she had indicated, his head was swimming, as if the orchids had wrapped their roots around him like mangroves to pull him under again. His hand, so steady usually, shook. Poppy let her fingers slide along his much longer than necessary when she took the toothpick he offered. He wished she would touch him even longer.

“Alright. Do you see this little thing at the centre of the flower?” Poppy pointed the tip of the toothpick at a black blossom, and Donn bent down to look at it closely. “That’s the column. You have to insert the toothpick here, carefully…” She demonstrated it to him, but Donn had a hard time concentrating. “You have to push the tip into the stigma to get it sticky, then pull it out along the anther cap…here. Do you see those little yellow dots? They’re called pollinia. The gonads, basically.” She pulled the toothpick out of the column and showed him two tiny yellow blobs sticking to it. “Now comes the fun part.” With a grin, she moved to the second plant.

Donn swallowed. Poppy’s voice turned throatier with every word, softer, and he leaned closer so he wouldn’t miss a single syllable. “This time, you want to get the pollinia to stick to the stigma. So you gently—gently—push your pick into the column, all the way to the back…and there you deposit your load.” The toothpick came out clean, and she turned her face to smile at him. Her breath tickled against his cheek, warm and damp. Squeezing his eyes shut, Donn tried to get rid of the images of Poppy on her knees, her mouth hot and wet as she sucked his cock into her throat.

“Do you want to try it?” she asked, and Donn wasn’t sure if she meant pollinating an orchid or fucking her throat. The answer was the same for both.

“Absolutely.”

*****

Sinful PleasuresBlurb:

Sinful Press welcomes you to lose yourself in Sinful Pleasures.

Join us as we weave our way from mainstream erotic romance to surreal sex-filled dreamscapes and everything in between, created by some of the best new and established voices in the erotica genre.

Janine Ashbless, Ella Scandal, Sonni de Soto, Jo Henny Wolf, Lily Harlem, Lady Divine, Gail Williams, Samantha MacLeod, Tony Fyler, Ellie Barker, Lisa McCarthy

Buy links:

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Support your small publisher and buy the paperback direct

*****

Author Bio:

Jo Henny Wolf lives with her husband and two daughters in the idyllic Rhine Valley in one of the warmest places of Germany. She spent her childhood roaming the woods of the Black Forest, steeped deeply in myth and folklore and ingrained superstition, where her love for fairytales was nurtured and cemented.

She holds a B.A. in German Language and Literature as well as Scandinavian Language and Literature. Tracing intertextual influences is like a treasure hunt and a fascinating puzzle to her, but it’s not as fulfilling as writing her own stories, accompanying her heroines and heroes through adventures full of magic, love and melancholy, and lots of steamy sex. She writes Romance novels as J. H. Wolf.

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Q&A with Monique Roffey (@MoniqueRoffey13)

  1. What is tantric sex?

‘Tan’ is the tantric word meaning to expand. Tantra means to expand into consciousness, into awareness. Tantric sex is mindful, conscious sex, it’s about being more fully connected with your partner, mind, heart and genitals. Lots of touch comes into tantra too. I love being touched.  Everybody does, and we don’t touch each other enough.

  1. Describe a turning point in your sexual journey.

Having my first tantric massage in a tent in the hills above Barcelona. It was 2008. The massage lasted hours and the pleasure was deep and replenishing and I had my first full body orgasm; after that I never went back to any other kind of sex.

  1. What is eco sex?

Ha, there is tons of sexual energy out here in the atmosphere, in the universe, in nature, ever felt a charge from a tree? Lain under a standing stone? Eco sex takes the energy from nature to charge up the entire system of chakkras in the body. My favourite things are standing stones, there is one in Cornwall which juts out at a 45% angle to the earth, if you lie under it long enough it will give you a tremendous orgasm.

  1. What have been the sexiest moments in your life?

I had a lover who was a sex worker, and he set the bar high. Most sexy moments always happen when no one is trying to get anything; they happen in trust and if you are happy, too.  They happen if you are relaxed. This ex lover had spent years learning sex skills; he was a professional, and my sexiest moments have been with him.

  1. What is sex magick?

Sex magic combines sigils or magical symbols, often using letters and bodily fluids, with the powerful energy of orgasm to direct wishes and intentions out there into the universe. I’ve tried this with some luck, here and there, and I believe there’s something there. Mostly I like the sigils; they can be beautiful.

*****

The Tryst, (Dodo Ink)

extract

By Monique Roffey

Before lunch we had sex again on the kitchen floor. Quickly, this time, me riding him. Oh, I like to be on top, to be the domina, the one who hostesses the show, who stages all the stunts with human males. I am the party thrower, the orgy mistress. I gave him a good fuck, massaging his cock with the muscles of my cunt, and the energy of him rose upwards through me and lit me up. This Bill was made to fit me and I was made to fit him; somehow I’d stumbled across him, this Adam. At first glance he was just a primary model: Husband, Father, the Average White English Male. Homme Vanille. Marks and Spencer Man. Nothing remarkable. Nicely castrated by the middle class feminists, cured of any alpha tendencies. He had been trained not to be dominant. Isn’t that what feminism has done, it has laughed the alpha males out of town. Masculinity is in crisis, say the clever ones these days. Feminism equalised women in the workplace and put men in the shed, where I found Bill. The male alpha doms went underground, thousands of them, to Internet fetish sites and their private dungeons and the like. There, many of my sistren operate, daemon-killers like me. Professional Dommes. Strangulators, ball kickers. Experts in humiliation, bestiality, fucking men up the ass with their strap-ons. Torturing testicles till they turn blue. We Lilatha exist in the shadows, in the twilight; we are around if you look for us. Many men do, those who like to submit. And they keep quiet when they find us. Few imps, like me, stalk the pavements in full view. That’s my kink, to fuck The Innocents, men like Bill. I like to dominate Mr Everyday.

And yet, as I had happily discovered, Bill had secret charms and abilities after all. My assessment had been wrong. I rode Bill hard, forging a twinned ecstasy between us. We groaned and writhed, both of us dying afterwards. I laughed with glee, at how Bill gasped for breath. “You’re lovely,” he gasped. I licked my fingers, tasting his bitter-salt cum. “So are you,” I winked. “Feed me now, I’m starving.”

Lunch was delicious and replenishing. We fell on fruit and gooey chocolate cake and ice cream and opened a bottle of red wine. I put on one of his vinyl jazz records and danced around naked. I’ll stay one more hour, I told myself. One more hour, just one. Janey-Wife has gone, this house is mine and we still want to fuck. I am not yet sated. Greedy thing I was, greedy for his cock. Bill couldn’t keep his eyes off me, he was entangled – miserably unsure of himself. Distant and yet high on that fuck-chemical of serotonin. It was coursing through him. It was like watching a new drug addict and any minute I might have to catch him from slumping to the floor. He was lust-drunk. But I wasn’t. I’d provoked this altered state in men many times before; I had left many husbands in this condition. Usually I fled well before this point. But I was still enjoying myself, still very much the sprite.

I danced naked for a while. Human men love to watch women dance in the nude and very few modern human women do. It is a dead art, relegated to the dim caverns and glossy tables of the lap dancing club. Burlesque strip-joints. Once, it was an art of the courtly harem and the well-paid hetaera; once it was part of Bohemia, of a social stratum of free thinkers and free lovers. Men have danced naked too, for women and other men. There is a long tradition of the Lust Arts. I find this an omission on the part of modern womankind as naked dancing puts men in a state of awe and gratitude. The Wife won’t do it, never did. Oh, human women divide their nature. Mother. Wife. Whore. They do not integrate. Good girls and bad. Few celebrate that they are both. So there I was rubbing myself and licking my lips, caressing my breasts, my hips, sliding my hand down between my legs. It was an act, a naked tease. This was one of my many carnival tricks. I have worked in burlesque clubs, learnt the art of grinding and wriggling, stripping off stockings, gloves. Doing what American strippers call ‘ass work’, removing strings of pearls from my pussy. I have a strong muscular vagina, able to pulse and milk my men. But I do not possess the agility of hookers in the bars and lap dancing clubs of the Orient. I cannot shoot ping-pong balls across the room. I surprised Bill with three small but succulent beetroot I had found in the fridge, already peeled and boiled. I dripped the purple ink over my quim, inserting them one by one, dancing them up and in. He laughed out loud and clapped for me and I took a bow. He knelt for me and ate as I released each soft warm beet into his mouth.

More, he whispered.

And I complied, oh, with cucumbers and carrots and the like. Bill was rock hard throughout. I loved his cock, thick and uncircumcised. The tip glistened. At one point, I knelt in front of Bill and took his balls into my mouth and swirled them round. He trusted me more with his jewels this time. He poured wine over my face and I drank and sucked and his cock was huge and solid and he stroked himself and dripped cum over my face, rubbed it into my hair. Then he was sitting on a counter top, his jeans unbuckled, his thighs bare, his cock like a tower. Me on tiptoe, with my mouth all over him, my head bobbing, all the while kneading his scrotum and his hand reaching down, stroking me, catching the drips. Then, his body juddered, as if Aphrodite herself was stroking the kundalini up from his genitals and up his back. His cum flew in hot spurts, white and pearly, splattering his stomach, the fruit bowl, everywhere. And I came too, my cum cascaded like a torrent to the floor, not a cupful, as usual, but a warm wave fell from that secret reservoir. Like I had urinated, except it was translucent and salt-sweet to taste. And with this release, I began to feel altered. I shouldn’t be here; I should have left. Bill reached down and cupped the small of my back as I shuddered. My orgasm swamped us both. I looked up at Bill and saw his eyes glittering. Oh Christ, he whispered. I could see that he had recognised me. I was Wife No 1. My cover was blown. It was then I whispered my real name to him in my language and he nodded.

*****

The Tryst, blurb

By Monique Roffey

London, midsummer night. Jane and Bill meet the mysterious Lilah in a bar. She entrances the couple with half-true, mixed up tales about her life. At closing time, Jane makes an impulsive decision to invite Lilah back to their home. But Jane has made a catastrophic error of judgment, for Lilah is a skilled and ruthless predator, the likes of which few encounter in a lifetime. Isolated and cursed, Jane and Bill are forced to fight for each other, and, in doing so, discover their covert desires.

Part psychological thriller, part contemporary magical realism, The Tryst revisits the tale of Adam’s first wife, Lilith, to examine the secrets of an everyday marriage.

*****

Praise for The Tryst

“What makes The Tryst an unexploded virus isn’t just the quality and brightness of Roffey’s writing on sex, even as it uncovers inner glades between flesh and fantasy where sex resides – but the taunting clarity of why those glades stay covered. A throbbing homewrecker of a tale, too late to call Fifty Shades of Red.”

DBC Pierre, Booker Prize winner

*****

BIOG

Monique Roffey is an award-winning Trinidadian-born writer. Her novels have been translated into five languages and short-listed for major awards including
the Orange Prize, Costa Fiction Award, Encore Award, Orion Award and the OCM Bocas Award for Caribbean Literature. In 2013, Archipelago won the OCM BOCAS Award for Caribbean Literature. Her memoir, With the Kisses of his Mouth, was published in 2011. She is a Lecturer on the MFA in the Novel at Manchester Metropolitan University. She divides her time between the East end of London and Port of Spain, Trinidad.

Buy at Amazon:

UK: http://amzn.to/2snABX2 US: https://www.amazon.com/Tryst-Monique-Roffey-ebook/dp/B072BX51PV/

Book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esSTfsbP3P4&sns=em

Twitter: @MoniqueRoffey13

Facebook: @MoniqueRoffeyAuthor

Instagram: @MoniqueRoffey

Website: www.moniqueroffey.com

Native Tongue Is On Tour! #erotica #romance #mm #gay

tourbutton_nativetongue

 

Hi everyone,

Just a quick note to let you know that, as of today, Native Tongue is on a virtual blog tour! If you want to find out more about the characters and the story, as well as win a super cool prize, then be sure and follow the tour. Here’s where it’s going, and when:

25th May: https://alliwantandmorebooks.wordpress.com/
26th May: http://vsreads.com
27th May: http://reviewsbycacb.blogspot.com/
28th May: http://www.bitchesbewritin.com/
29th May: http://jjskinkybooks.blogspot.co.uk/
1st June: https://mmgoodbookreviews.wordpress.com/
2nd June: http://www.prismbookalliance.com/
3rd June: http://www.camerondjames.wordpress.com/
4th June: http://heartsonfirereviews.com/
5th June: http://www.lovebitessilkties.co.uk/

For direct links as they go live, keep an eye on my Facebook and Twitter pages.

Happy Reading!
Lucy x

Pack of Lies is Now On Tour – With Giveaway!

Hi everyone,

Just a quick note to let you know that Pack of Lies is on a blog tour from today for two weeks. I’ll be dishing the dirt on this paranormal erotic romance, my inspiration, research, planning and much more! There’s also a fantastic giveaway taking place – and you can get bonus entries today! See the Rafflecopter below.

Click the button below for the tour dates, or like Writer Marketing Services’ Facebook page and my social networks (links in the sidebar) to keep track of the posts.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy Reading!

Lucy x

A Taste of Rome is On Tour!

Hi everyone,

I’m just swinging by to let you know that book three of my World of Sin series, A Taste of Rome, is on tour this week. The dates are below, and there’s an awesome giveaway, so make sure to stop by, check out the posts, and enter!

The first two dates have direct links, as they’re live now 🙂

28th April: http://www.lovebitessilkties.co.uk/
29th April: http://www.selenacooper.com/
30th April: http://choward2614.wordpress.com
1st May: http://elizabethcoldwell.wordpress.com
2nd May: http://locglin.blogspot.com/

Happy Reading!
Lucy x