Tag-Archive for » Shapeshifters «

Werewolf Wednesday…Lesbian Werewolves for the Win! (Rachel Deering’s Anathema, GCLS Conference, and Catherine Lundoff’s Silver Moon)

Just under the wire for Werewolf Wednesday.

Rachel Deering has a Kickstarter to fund the artists for issues #2 through #6 for Anathema, a lesbian werewolf comic, and it ends April 30. Anathema’s Kickstarter page. I haven’t read the first issue, but the preview to the first issue looks awesome, and she’s almost fully funded. I’m looking forward to reading the entire story. Lesbian werewolves for the win!

Speaking of lesbian werewolves for the win, there’s a panel at this year’s Golden Crown Literary Society Conference (a lesbian literature conference) on “Lesbian Shapeshifters and Werecritters.” The conference is June 13-17 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and if you go, I’d love to see your notes on it. (I can’t, that’s right after this year’s wedding season extravaganza [not my wedding, weddings I am attending], and I can already tell I’ll be playing catch-up at work. However, I’m keeping this in mind when scheduling things for 2013.)

To round out today’s Werewolf Wednesday, until April 30, you can enter to win a copy of Silver Moon by Catherine Lundoff. If you follow me on Twitter, you may know I received an arc to read. I’ve finished it, and am working on the review to come (and hope to schedule some sort of book release event with Catherine, which reminds me, I need to email her), but in short, I really loved it and can’t wait to read more in this world.

Seriously, lesbian werewolves for the win!

Publications…Excerpt from “Hunter, Prey”

Don’t forget, you can still vote for “Hunter, Prey” to be included in Circlet Press’s Best of Circlet’s Digital Library Print Anthology. Vote here! Voting runs through March 15, and I thought I’d share an excerpt from “Hunter, Prey” here. If you like it, the full story is available in Like Tooth and Claw.

Meanwhile, come meet feisty, sexy Aisha and her new golden boy Finn.

Excerpt from “Hunter, Prey”

The last native wild mountain lion in Missouri was killed in 1927. Hunters have been telling stories of mountain lion sightings ever since.

One

I met him at the sixth stop on a Halloween bar crawl. My friends and I had a list of ten bars, but at six, we were almost done. It was my favorite, and I felt good enough to stay put.

Better than good. I was sobering up, but still riding a delicious buzz. I noticed him because he was still and silent when everyone else moved around the room, their voices loud and bright.

I twisted my glass of water against the top of the bar and shifted my weight so I could bounce my right heel. I had too much energy to sit.

“We could go dancing,” Shelley offered. She’d been my best friend since birth, when our dads took us to play dates together, and knew my moods better than anyone else.

I shrugged and cast another quick glance in his direction. She followed my gaze, then raised her eyebrows. Didn’t say anything, just took a drink of beer and carefully wiped her mouth after. The understanding between us went both ways. I knew what she was thinking, and she was absolutely right. I didn’t hook up with strangers. I didn’t have much time to date. Anytime I wanted uncomplicated sex—which I frequently did—one of my friends was up for it, too. We were a casual, open bunch.

Shelley glanced at him again and nudged me. I stepped to the side, sure she wanted me to make room for Erica—one of her partners. Trace, the other one, was at work—to join us, but she only nudged me again, harder.

Oh. It was a go get him, tiger nudge.

“He’s hot, Aisha. Go for it.”

I drained my water and looked over again. This time he looked at me, too, and our eyes locked. His corner was so shadowed I couldn’t tell what color his were.

It gave me an excuse to take a closer look.

I took my time crossing the room. I thought it was clear I was headed his way, and I wanted to give him time to give me a signal he didn’t want company. Plus, people kept stopping me to talk.

He was still in place when I got away from the others. A hopeful sign, but there was no guarantee he knew I’d been giving him an out.

“Want some company?” I put my hand on the back of an empty chair, but didn’t pull it away from the table.

He stared at me for a second. I didn’t mind. It gave me a chance to look at him. Up close, he was golden—the long hair in varying shades of blond, the beard and the scruff across his cheeks, and the way the dim light played off his skin—as if he’d been dipped in honey. ost striking of all were his eyes, golden-brown but strangely lit from within, like a candle behind stained glass.

He breathed in through his nose, then nudged the chair toward me. I pushed it closer to the wall and sat sideways in it, one arm looped over the back.

“Werewolf?” he asked. It took me a second, frowning, before I got it, and heat rushed to my cheeks. Probably he wouldn’t be able to tell in the low light. I touched the pointed ears sticking up from my twists. Shelley had made them out of soft black fur only slightly darker than my skin. It didn’t look like wolf, but most people couldn’t tell.

“The Big Bad Wolf.” I grinned and pointed out Shelley. “My best friend is Little Red Riding Hood. There’s a woodcutter around somewhere, too.” I half rose and angled my body so I could shake my ass at him. “Even got the tail. Sexy, huh?”

He chuckled and grinned. It flashed a deep dimple on the right side of his face and teeth that were crooked and sharp. “Very.” I wanted him to speak more. His voice was deep and slightly growly, but it had a hint of an accent, and I couldn’t yet place it.

“What’s your name?”

“Finn. Yours?”

Didn’t he ever use more than one-word sentences? “Aisha. You’re new around here.”

“That obvious?”

Okay. Two words. His reticence wasn’t horrible, though. I didn’t want that lush mouth of his for conversation.

“It’s a local bar. There are plenty closer to the highway. That’s where people stop if they’re passing through and where the college kids go.”

“I noticed. Too crowded for me.”

“So you made it all the way out to this little hole in the wall. Lucky me.”

He scratched the stubble on his cheek. “Want something to drink?”

“Water with lemon. I want to be sober for this.” I flashed him another smile and was inordinately pleased when he grinned back. I bit the inside of my lower lip to keep my joy from bubbling up. It was just a smile. I hadn’t caught him yet.

I made sure to watch him carefully. He might have been hot, and his jeans fit close to nice thighs and a firm butt, but he was still a stranger. Better safe than sorry when it came to drugged drinks. Shelley was watching us, and she stood next to him when he ordered. I trusted her to keep an eye on my drink. She stopped him when he turned away from the bar, all bouncy blonde ex-cheerleader, grinning and tossing her curls and ruffling her skirt at him. I looked good as a modern Big Bad Wolf, leather pants and boots and a distressed gray wrap shirt with a forest of pine trees trailing down the side—another of Shelley’s handmade items, she was so artistic it sometimes made me sick—but she was absolutely gorgeous in her black leather skirt and her tiny red hooded T-shirt. It showed off the shiny jewel in her belly button.

I’d left my truck a couple blocks away at the start of the night, pretty close to the last few bars on our list. There were streetlights, but all my windows were tinted, the back doors limo dark. I hit the unlock button on my keychain, but before I could open the door, Finn pushed me against it and put his mouth on my throat.

He ran his hands up my sides, under my shirt, until his thumbs brushed the bottom of my bra. My nipples tightened still further from the mix of his touch and the cold air. I hooked a leg around his calf and urged him closer, up between my thighs.

His hair was rough and thick around my hand. I palmed the back of his head and forced his face up. His mouth was open, his breath heavy, and I brushed my lips against his once, twice, before kissing him deeply.

He tasted like lime and beer. He shoved my bra up and strummed his thumbs across my nipples, catching my moan and swallowing it. Swallowing me. I rocked my hips forward, rubbing against his thigh. My bra was tight against the top of my chest, constricting the blood flow, and my breasts tingled.

Finn kissed the corner of my mouth, the edge of my jaw, the curve of my shoulder, and then licked the hollow of my throat. His tongue traced designs on my skin. I tilted my head back, gasping for air, and my breath hung in a white cloud overhead, melting away slowly. I tugged hard on his hair. He groaned and pulled against my grip, but I knew that sound, that movement. He wasn’t trying to get away. I fisted my hand and twisted it in his hair, giving myself a much better grip, then pulled again, hard and steady, moving him where I wanted him to go.

“I want to see you naked,” I ordered and reached behind me to open the door. I shoved him inside, scrambled in after him, and locked the doors behind me, trapping us.

Publications…Vote for “Hunter, Prey” for Circlet Press’s Best of Circlet’s Digital Library Print Anthology

Vote for “Hunter, Prey”

Circlet Press is celebrating its twentieth anniversary of “celebrating the erotic imagination,” which is a damn fine thing to celebrate. As a part of the celebration, Circlet is releasing a print anthology of the Best of Circlet’s Digital Library. The editors have shortlisted stories from Circlet’s ebooks, and now readers get to vote on their favorites for inclusion in the print anthology and some monetary prizes.

My story “Hunter, Prey” was shortlisted! Originally published in Like Tooth and Claw, “Hunter, Prey” is the story of Aisha, a black woman in her thirties who loves to hunt, both animals and sexual partners. Her Halloween fling with the strange and sexy Finn becomes something much more when she’s attacked by a mountain lion while deer hunting in the wilds of Missouri and suddenly she’s faced with a whole new meaning for the word hunter — and the word prey.

Asylumgirl at Night Owl Reviews had this to say about “Hunter, Prey”: The attraction between the characters is immediate and something that the reader can feel and be a part of. The sex is hot and rough, with bites and bruises to go around. Hunter, Prey is an excellent example of shapeshifter romance, full of raw animalistic eroticism.

I love kinky, dominant Aisha and golden big cat Finn, and am absolutely honored that “Hunter, Prey” was shortlisted, particularly because I did receive some negative feedback about it because Aisha was a dominant woman and Finn willingly submits to her. I normally try to take what I can from negative feedback to improve and don’t let it bother me, but since the core of some of this feedback was simply that women shouldn’t be dominant, it got to me, a little. Being shortlisted like this reminded me that not everyone feels that way. (I talked about this in more depth here.)

I would really appreciate your vote for “Hunter, Prey” if you enjoyed reading it. Other stories I particularly recommend include “A Woman of Uncommon Accomplishment” by Elizabeth Reeve, the story I love despite disliking Austen, and “The Dancer’s War” by N.K. Jemisin, which is breathtakingly hot and made me want to dance.

Vote for “Hunter, Prey”

Publications…Excellent Review of “Hunter, Prey” in Like Tooth and Claw

Asylumgirl at Night Owl Reviews posted an excellent review of Like Tooth and Claw from Circlet Press, including a fantastic bit about my sexy mountain lion shapeshifter story, “Hunter, Prey.”

The attraction between the characters is immediate and something that the reader can feel and be a part of. The sex is hot and rough, with bites and bruises to go around. Hunter, Prey is an excellent example of shapeshifter romance, full of raw animalistic eroticism.

Now that is a sexy review for a sexy story. Thank you so much, Asylumgirl!

Publications. . .”Hunter, Prey” in Circlet Press’s Erotic Advent

Each year, Circlet Press does this fabulous Erotic Advent. (I personally am combining this with an actual advent calendar, too. Chocolate and erotica, fabulous combination.) Each day, they feature either one story they’ve published or a brand new story.

Today, December 8, my sexy mountain lion shapeshifter story “Hunter, Prey,” originally published in Like Tooth and Claw, is the featured story.

Blurb: “Hunter, Prey” is the story of Aisha, a black woman in her thirties who loves to hunt, both animals and sexual partners. Her Halloween fling with the strange and sexy Finn becomes something much more when she’s attacked by a mountain lion while deer hunting in the wilds of Missouri and suddenly she’s faced with a whole new meaning for the word hunter — and the word prey.

Available for a short time only, if you haven’t already read Like Tooth and Claw, now is the perfect time to give “Hunter, Prey” a try.

Writing…Dominant Women, Submissive Men (for Hack Gender)

At one point, I saw a review of Like Tooth and Claw that was pretty negative overall. I’m not linking to the review because the review itself isn’t the point. People should be encouraged to leave honest reviews without feeling like the author will come and yell at them for writing a negative review. However, the review did make me think. When I saw Hack Gender start appearing on Twitter, I decided to finally put down some of my thoughts.

The part of the review that stood out for me was when the reviewer basically said zie couldn’t identify with the characters of my story, “Hunter, Prey,” because the woman was dominant and topped the man and the man was willing to be dominated.

I’ve run into this before, both as a writer but also as a kinky woman, especially as a kinky queer woman who is considered dominant. (Theoretically, I’m a switch, but there are very few people for whom I bottom [so far, exactly one], and I am far more likely to be the top when participating in the kinky community.) When people discuss kink — whether they themselves are kinky or are simply analyzing it from outside — most of the time they assume dominant man and submissive woman.

That is not my kink.

One reason it’s not my kink is that a lot of the time, there is no man involved in my kink. Most of the people I played with were women and they were either bottoms or switches who bottomed for me. And yes, I think there is something beautiful about the women writhing in pleasure-pain.

There is something beautiful about men in the same situation.

But this isn’t about my kink. It’s not about your kink. It’s about the assumptions of people — here, readers, but I think this applies in other situations as well — when addressing something considered unusual. A dominant woman and a man happy to be dominated.

I intentionally wrote Aisha to address some of the things which bother me about paranormal romance — and romance in general. Aisha isn’t a virginal slender young white woman. Aisha has a lot of sex without being in a relationship, she is in her thirties, she is fat, she is black, and she owns a construction company and fights to hold her own space in a very masculine field. At the beginning of the story, Aisha picks up Finn — a stranger — in a bar for an uncomplicated one night stand. (Finn later complicates it.)

She is hard to identify with because she dominates her romantic partner in the story.

Women are not supposed to be dominant. Women are supposed to be taken, not to do the taking themselves. Women are not supposed to go after what they want, and they are certainly not supposed to get off on holding power in a sexual situation. They are not supposed to enjoy denying their partner’s orgasm, especially when the partner is male. They are not supposed to enjoy tying up their partners and beating them.

Women are not supposed to have power, and if they do have power they are certainly not supposed to enjoy it.

This is bullshit.

Edited to Add: It has come to my attention that at the end of this post, it may not be clear that I am expressing anger via sarcastic commentary on what people have told me about women and sexuality. I am a dominant woman who enjoys power and sex and fully support dominant women who enjoy power and sex. I apologize for not saying this clearly.

Waiting on Wednesday…Apocalypses, Shapeshifters, and Vampires

From Circlet Press:

Apocalypse Sex: Love Like the End of the World

Description from the call for submissions:

What would you do if you had only 24 hours to live?

[…]

24 hours left to do everything you’ve wanted to: Would you make love to the person you’ve always secretly cared for? Have a rendezvous with a stranger on the street? Explore your wildest fantasies, or get back to the basics one last time?

(I wasn’t able to submit to this anthology like I’d planned, but oh, how much am I looking forward to this collection? Apocalypse stories for the win!)

Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance 2 edited by Trisha Telep.

I’m particularly looking forward to Moira Rogers’ story in this, which is about a lion shifter. (If you couldn’t tell from “Hunter, Prey,” I love lion shapeshifters.)

Everlasting Kiss by Amanda Ashley

Desire Never Dies

Daisy O’Donnell doesn’t get the attraction some women feel for vampires. She likes her men with a heartbeat. And she’s just met one who’s full of life: Erik Delacourt, the unreasonably sexy man she keeps meeting at a popular L.A. nightclub called the Crypt. She barely knows him, but there’s no resisting the connection she feels. . .

There’s one important detail Erik hasn’t gotten around to telling her yet. He’s a powerful vampire out to hunt the Blood Thief who is draining young vampires all over the city–and who has just raised the stakes by destroying one of Erik’s friends. To Erik, Daisy is a bright spot of innocence in a world of darkness and menace. He’ll do anything–even lie to her–to keep her safe and pure.
If only he knew that Daisy has something of her own to hide. . .

Publications…2009 Publications Year in Review

Though I started writing my first erotic paranormal romance short story late in 2008 (and it still hasn’t been published, though it’s currently with a publisher and I’m waiting to hear the result), 2009 was the first year I started actively writing and trying to sell short stories. I’m pleased with the way 2009 turned out for me, and I hope to continue this in 2010. (Even though I missed the deadline for the first call for subs to which I intended to submit. I hope the rest go better.)

I submitted six short stories in 2009. One, as I said, is still with the publisher. Two were rightfully rejected, and I am currently rewriting one of those for a call for subs later this year. Three of the stories were published, which absolutely thrilled me.

2009 Publications

1) Like a Thousand Miles of Fire in Bite Me from Torquere Press

“Like a Thousand Miles of Fire” is is the story of a half-demon, Crystal Andraya, and her two vampire lovers, William and Miguel. They defy the rules of their world to be together, and as war looms between vampires and demons, the only place they can find strength and peace is in each other’s arms.

2) Beneath the Changing Moon in the Voracious Vamps line from Total E-Bound

Blurb: Amalia has always loved the way Darren challenged her with his friendship, but as he seduces her romantically and sexually, she knows eventually she will given in to what he truly wants and what is forbidden: the exchange of their blood.

In a world where vampires have almost died out, procreation is the responsibility of every fertile vampire. For Amalia Vallen, infertility is a curse. Not because she’s failing her society but because Darren Lin, the man she’s loved since they were children, is fertile.

Amalia fears their society – and, worse, Darren’s family – will reject their bonding because she can bear no vampire children. To Darren, it doesn’t matter; all he wants is Amalia’s love. As Amalia struggles to overcome the biases she’s internalised, Darren seduces her into romance, sex, and the most important vampire ritual, sharing blood.

3) Hunter, Prey in Like Tooth and Claw from Circlet Press

Blurb: “Hunter, Prey” is the story of Aisha, a black woman in her thirties who loves to hunt, both animals and sexual partners. Her Halloween fling with the strange and sexy Finn becomes something much more when she’s attacked by a mountain lion while deer hunting in the wilds of Missouri and suddenly she’s faced with a whole new meaning for the word hunter — and the word prey.

Though I primarily read and write werewolf stories, I have yet to sell one! I should try to remedy that in 2010. (The story still with a publisher is a werewolf story, though.)

Publications…”Hunter, Prey” release day

To add to my end of the year joy, today is the release day for Circlet Press’s Like Tooth and Claw anthology, which includes my story, “Hunter, Prey.” (Isn’t that an awesome title? I mean Like Tooth and Claw, but actually, I think “Hunter, Prey” is pretty awesome, too.)

“Hunter, Prey” is the story of Aisha, a black woman in her thirties who loves to hunt, both animals and sexual partners. Her Halloween fling with the strange and sexy Finn becomes something much more when she’s attacked by a mountain lion while deer hunting in the wilds of Missouri and suddenly she’s faced with a whole new meaning for the word hunter — and the word prey.

Like Tooth and Claw is available for sale at a number of places!

Circlet Press’s sales page (PDF)
Amazon Kindle
Fictionwise
All Romance Ebooks
Smashwords
Scribd

Description: In recent years, paranormal romance has become an incredibly popular and steamy genre, delving into the romantic potential of such fantastic creatures as werewolves, and Circlet Press has certainly done our share of werewolf books (Faewolf, Alpha, Like An Animal, The Beast Within). However, wolves are far from the only animal with fantasy potential. Now, Circlet is taking the next step in Like Tooth and Claw, exploring shapeshifters beyond the traditional werewolves.

The six stories in Like Tooth and Claw feature vastly different kinds of shapeshifters, from lions to seals, but the theme of self-discovery remains constant throughout the anthology. Through their transformations into animals that walk, crawl, swim, or fly, the characters learn what it truly means to be an animal, and what it means to be human. Shapeshifting brings freedom, but at what price? Like Tooth and Claw tackles that question and more.

Table of Contents:
• Hunter, Prey by Marie Carlson
• Eagle Eyed by Helen Dring
• Tonight We Work in Silk by Lee Harrington
• Northern Sea by Alex Monagan
• Waylaid by Julie Cox
• Lioness by Amanda Ferry