Working at Hyper-Speed

Working at hyper-speed – is that a thing? I feel like I am. I’ve decided I want to squash another book into 2017, and to do that, I’m going to have to write so fast that my typing fingers blur!

The pushy book that wants to be written is Her Robot Wolf. I was trying to keep it a secret project, but I’m too excited not to share it. I’m not actually sure where it’ll wander in its space adventures, but she’s a starship shaman and he’s a galactic bounty hunter. Together, they’re trouble! Of course, if he’d just let her go, all their troubles would be over … maybe! He’s also a werewolf who has lost the ability to shift. Complications everywhere!

Her Robot Wolf is part of the reason I’ve brought forward the release of my third Old School novel. Storm Road will be out around April 7 – so that you can read it while you eat choccy Easter eggs the following weekend. I’m trying something different with this release. Instead of a pre-order, I’ll simply publish it. I’ll announce the release here, on Facebook and on Twitter. Please don’t miss it, since it’ll only be 99c for a short time.

paranormal romance, kindle unlimited,

My current project – before I lose myself in Her Robot Wolf – is the fourth Old School novel. Fire Fall finally brings you Vanessa’s story. The draft blurb is below. If you thought Marcus in Phoenix Blood was intense, wait till you meet Seth!

Vanessa Araya is not hiding! She’s trying to find herself after the terror of being kidnapped six months ago. Who is she when her trust in people has been stripped away? How can she be free and brave and in love with life when a little part of her is always looking over her shoulder? Being the daughter of a billionaire hurts in unique ways.

Seth Bentham fell for Vanessa three years ago, and walked away. He’s a wizard mercenary: lethal, magical and in deep in a dangerous world. He would have only brought Vanessa pain. Now he’s hunting the southern Rocky Mountains for a kidnapped barrier wizard; not to save the man, but to learn more about the plot that involves him. The very last person Seth expects to stumble over while hiking is Vanessa, but here she is, strong, scared that she’s broken, and his.

This time, Seth won’t walk away.

But the price of stealing time together is high. Old enemies and new threats lurk in the mountains. There are fantastical creatures and there is the racing, hungry inferno of wildfire. Before the Fourth of July explodes in fireworks, someone will die.

phoenix blood, urban fantasy, kindle unlimited,

Are You Ready for a Magical Weekend?

You should be feeling lucky! It’s St Patrick’s Day. I have some book ideas below for magical reading on the weekend. But with it being a green day (have you ever celebrated St Pat’s Day with green beer? I haven’t!) I wondered if you’d be gardening this weekend. Green, gardening, my skippety hoppety brain often has a reason for its skippiness.

It’s autumn here, so it’s almost time to start thinking of a new season – summer is hanging around, so it’s not quite cool enough to jump into winter plantings. The herbs are looking incredibly green. Lots of yummy basil.

I would love to have room to plant a grove of pistachio trees and maybe a couple of carob trees. It’s not that I like the taste of carob (although it’s okay if chocolate is totally unavailable). But space for trees in suburbia is cramped. I might buy a new herb! Any suggestions? What’s your favourite herb?

Romantic or Paranormal Mysteries 99c or Less, March 17 & 18

kindle unlimited, paranormal, mysteries,

Are you feeling witchy, curious or simply ready for some romance? There’s a book for that! The Mystery Promo runs Friday and Saturday.

Footy Season starts next weekend!

For me, footy means Australian Rules Football. I don’t want to break any copyright rules, so I’ll link you to the ads for it if you’re interested rather than try and embed them.

This was THE classic ad from twenty years ago. This year, the game started a women’s league, and they riffed off the classic ad with this I’d Like to See That ad.

It mightn’t sound magical to you, but I love collapsing on the sofa for a couple of hours on the weekend and watching a game of footy. Of course, if it’s my team involved (go, the West Coast Eagles!) I can’t relax. I have to be mentally willing each kick-on-goal through the big sticks 🙂

Kindle Unlimited Discoveries

kf breene, paranormal romance, kindle unlimited,I enjoyed Hell’s Rejects by MR Forbes. It was a fast-paced space adventure and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

Born in Fire by KF Breene has a kick-ass heroine with a strong narrative voice. Lots happening in what promises to be a memorable series. Love the New Orleans setting!

Have You Read All Seven of My Collegium Series?

kindle unlimited, paranormal romance, series,

I thought I’d list the seven books in my complete paranormal romance series in case you’ve missed one. They’re all free to read in Kindle Unlimited.

Demon Hunter

Magic is real, if hidden, and betrayal is sharper than a demon’s claws.  A novella.

Djinn Justice

Fay and Steve’s new relationship is tested by a meddling djinn, a power-crazed villain enslaving weres, and Steve’s family. A novel.

Dragon Knight  

Gina Sidhe is on a quest for her dragon. Lewis Bennett is trying to survive without magic. A novel.

Doctor Wolf

Dr Liz Jekyll has a secret to hide. What she needs is a big, bad wolf to hide behind!

Plague Cult

In a small Texas town a desire for love becomes a curse that could unleash a deadly plague.

Hollywood Demon

A demon is stalking Hollywood. So much for Clancy renouncing her magic and becoming ordinary. This means a fight!

Alchemy Shift

A woman, her sword, and the bear-shifter who’ll steal her heart.

Magic is Real! Kinda

Have you watched the television show Penn & Teller Fool Us? I love watching the different magicians trying to fool the masters – and then, I try to guess how the trick was done. I’m often baffled! In this interview with Teller in Vanity Fair I’m struck by his belief that a magician’s purpose is to amaze. The world needs more opportunities for innocent awe.



The Seven Tropes of Paranormal Romance

I read a LOT of paranormal romance. I also write it. So I’m sitting here at the keyboard trying to boil it down into seven tropes: the seven things that aren’t so much over-used as instantly recognisable and definitive of the subgenre. Or to put it another way: what do I like to see in a paranormal romance novel?

Kick Ass Heroine

Right from the start, even if she’s in a Cinderella role, I want to see strength in the heroine. What does she believe in? What will she fight for?

Magic Won’t Solve the Problem

The fun of paranormal romance is, in a large part, the imaginative worlds authors create. How does some form of magic or “otherness” make the world of the book different to our everyday lives? However, as mind-boggling as the magical world is, magic can’t solve all problems. Human resourcefulness and the heroine’s emotional journey must contribute to saving the day.

A Man of Mystery

Part of the heroine’s (and reader’s) journey of discovery must include the hero. Who is he really? What secret is he hiding? Why can’t we guess what he’ll do next?

Who Has the Map?

We’re all going on a quest. It might be to solve a murder or to save the day, but there’s a quest underway. There’ll be setbacks and, hopefully, unforeseen twists. The stakes get progressively higher.

Don’t Die Laughing

Humour lurks in paranormal romance. Sometimes it’s subtle and rueful. Other times it is loud and snarky. As the tension ratchets up, someone crack a joke!

Find the Touchstone

The worlds of paranormal romance are many and varied, but as we quest here and there, we have to stumble over a touchstone or two. Somewhere in the thickets of magic is the truth. As readers, we recognise some soul truth. So does our heroine, and it changes her. It goes back to the first kick ass question: what (or who) is worth fighting for?

And We All Live Happily Ever After

Whatever happens in a paranormal romance novel, it is a ROMANCE. There has to be a happy ending, or a happy for now ending. Better make it believable, too. The world may be magical, but human hearts remain the same, and we want our hero and heroine to have a solid chance at happiness.

You see, at their core, paranormal romance novels are about fighting impossible odds in incredible settings with unusual sidekicks out of the hope that somehow we (like the heroine) can make a difference in life.

What do you expect to see in a paranormal romance novel?


phoenix blood, jenny schwartz, pnr, paranormal romance, kindle unlimited,

Phoenix Blood is 99c or free in Kindle Unlimited. Magic condemned him, but before he dies, he’ll save the woman whose heart he broke. Magic, mystery, a fledgling phoenix and a once-in-a-lifetime road trip.

Buy link: 

Storm Road Cover Reveal, New Releases & More!

Wait for it… (and don’t forget to scroll down for new books and a free book!)

Ta da!


Isn’t the cover for Storm Road beautiful? I’m such a fan of Lou Harper’s designs. And the book is every bit as intense. So much emotion in this story.

The draft blurb is below. I don’t have a pre-order link, yet. But stay tuned! You’ll want to read Beulah and Dean’s story.

When a woman with secrets saves a man hunted by a ghoul, the choice is stark: salvation or damnation.

Major Dean Fortescue, JAG lawyer and former marine, enters the Southern Appalachian Mountains to find his aunt, who has gone missing. He discovers her house burned down, a ghoul in residence, and a mysterious woman who claims to control the weather.

Beulah Morgan is a weathermage, home after months away on a scientific research vessel in the Southern Ocean. When her mountain retreat is invaded by death magic, old memories resurface and with them, the worst kind of danger: soul danger.

Kindle Unlimited Discoveries

I guess you might call Justice is Calling by Justin Sloan and Michael Anderle a dystopian paranormal novel. Genre-bending makes for compelling reading. (It’s also currently only 99c if you’re not a Kindle Unlimited subscriber). Available as an audiobook.

A vampire princess in post-apocalyptic New York works to bring the city to order and set up a defense before her nefarious brother arrives to destroy it with his army of evil vampires.

kindle unlimited

In Artful Peter David has a lot of fun spinning off from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist to present the Artful Dodger with some vampire complications. The introduction was particularly funny.

That said, my favourite Artful Dodger remains the one in Dodger by Terry Pratchett. Then again, Sir Terry Pratchett was an amazing author, one of my heroes.

New Release

paranormal romance

Just out today, Nephilim Falling by Felicia Beasley looks like exactly my kind of read.

He’s a fireball slinging angel-spawn. She’s a demon’s snarky progeny.
Everyone knows demons and angels don’t mix.
Unfortunately, no one told them.

Free Book!

I’ve just released Fantasy Man as an individual novella. It was originally part of the DARE collection, but that’s no longer available. To celebrate the release, Fantasy Man is free on Amazon till March 12.

Buy link:

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Romance Promotions for March & Other News

Can there ever be too much news? Please read on till the end – I’m saving the best for last 🙂

I have books in two romance promotions this week.

The first promotion runs throughout March and is for romance novels with a science fiction or fantasy flavour (including urban fantasy) all of which are in Kindle Unlimited. Check out the titles at Romance in March.

The second are 100 romance titles between 99c and $2.99. It’s the March Book Fair! It’s on till March 10.


Eating Habits

Actually, this can apply to more than eating, but it’s a thought that has been lingering since I watched the Tour de France back in July (I watch it for the scenery – dreaming I’m in France in summer while its winter here). The commentators were talking about the riders and they said something about how the competitors eat for tomorrow’s exertions.

It was a lightbulb moment for me. I’ve always tended to think of food as something earned. So I can have chocolate cake because I’ve just scrubbed the bathroom, for example. But when I think about what I want to do tomorrow, then that is far more likely to encourage me to forgo the cake and eat something healthy so that I’m feeling fit to tackle my ever-expanding To-Do List.

I’m still trying to change my thinking and eat for tomorrow. I’d actually be really happy to simply eat well right now. Do you eat with the past or the future in mind?

Kindle Unlimited Discoveries

Sacrifice is a book I met when it was still in its egg, so to speak (and punning off the cover). Gwendolyn Beynon is a friend, and an immensely talented author. She did extensive research for the Welsh setting.  For fantasy readers, and especially, dragon lovers.


Contest Winner

Kate S won the $100 gift card from the Dreaming of Unicorns contest.

Thank you to everyone who entered. It was fascinating to learn which mythological creatures people most want to meet: dragons and unicorns, and rarer beasts like kitsune.

… and I’ve saved the best for last!

Secrets of Mindful Beauty is out today!

Secrets of Mindful Beauty by Dr Elizabeth Reid Boyd and Jessica Moncrieff-Boyd is my critique partner’s brilliant new book, written with her daughter.

If you think the answer to anti-aging and looking good comes from a jar, a salon, or a surgical procedure: think again. The best beauty treatment is in your own mind.

Did you know

Depression can give you wrinkles
Insomnia can cause sagging skin
Anxiety can increase reddening and skin rashes
Stress can result in acne and hair loss
and much more?

Discover the secrets of mindful beauty. Lose your permanent frown. Smooth your worried brow without Botox. Turn your sag lines into smile lines. These age-defying techniques have been specially created for a happier, more beautiful you.

Mindful beauty is a way of applying the practices of mindfulness to our physical health and well-being. Many of our routines around beauty lend themselves to mindfulness, and this will not only enhance the experience, but also have ongoing positive beautifying effects by reducing the stress and anxiety that can affect how we look and feel.

For me, The Secrets of Mindful Beauty is summed up in one line toward the end of the book: “Practicing mindfulness is a way of cultivating grace.”  This is a book about the art of being at peace in the present moment, moving positively through the world, quieting your negative thoughts and treasuring all the good that is in you. It suggests strategies for achieving mindfulness in the simple practices of our daily beauty routines: self-care, physically and mentally.

I read the book on my old kindle, so I’m not sure I got the full benefit of photographer Steve Fraser’s beautiful images.

The Secrets of Mindful Beauty is a delight. It provides a non-scary way of bringing mindfulness into our daily lives.

Buy link: