Guest Author Day with Louisa Kelly & a Giveaway
Today I have the pleasure of having author Louisa Kelly dropping in my blog to talk about their latest book, Unbidden Dragon. Please remember to enter the giveaway at the end of the post for a chance to win a $10 gift card from the author.
Now let's chat with Louisa Kelly....
Thanks for stopping by to talk a little about your writing! Let's jump right in. When did you begin writing and why?
I started writing stories in second grade and never stopped. By age 10, when asked, “What did I want to be when I grew up?” my stock answer was, “A writer, like Louisa May Alcott.” Her books were my introduction to romance. I still consider her an eternal writing mentor. She was a strong, independent woman who blazed a life of her choosing, and became successful as an author, during a time when it was rare for women to have such lives, or success.
Do you have a favorite genre? Is it the same genre you prefer to write?
Paranormal/fantasy romance is my favorite genre to write. I read that genre quite a bit, as well as science fiction and historical romance, along with lesbian fiction and romance.
Do certain themes and ideas tend to capture your writer’s imagination and fascinate you?
I am obsessed with dragons and have been my entire life! I am continually pulled to the concept of shape-changing, magic, powerful beings...combined with enticing characters and compelling surroundings. Add in a satisfying emotional journey that ends in a romantic happily-ever-after…sigh. Heaven.
How do you balance long-term thinking vs. being nimble in today's market?
I don’t really have a good answer to that question. I try to write books I enjoy and that I think readers will too, and just stay focused on doing the best I can.
How do you find readers in today's market?
Now isn’t that the big question!! Every author wants to know the answer. I’m doing what all writers are these days - social media, newsletter, etc. Website. Then there’s sheer good luck.
Do you come up with the hook first, or do you create characters first and then dig through until you find a hook?
I’ve had it happen both ways. There’s always some sort of prompt, or idea, that gets me started on the story, either a situation or a character.
How do you create your characters?
Sometimes a photo or someone I see on the street will spark a writing interest, or even someone I know will prompt the beginning of a character. As I write, the characters start talking to me, telling me who they are.
What's on the top of your TBR pile right now?
“The Shambling Guide to New York City”, by Mur Lafferty.
Tell me a little about the characters in Unbidden Dragon
The main love interest characters are both women – a change from my other books, which were M/F romances. One woman is dragon shape-shifter on a big mission in Portland, the other is a woman who has no idea she’s also a dragon! It was a blast to write and I was thrilled when Loose-Id offered me a contract. I am really hoping to attract readers from the M/F romance crowd. Yes, that’s me waving my fairy wand! Come on over – the water’s fine, the romance is sensual and emotionally moving and there’s still dragons, people!
Where’s the story set? How much influence did the setting have on the atmosphere/characters/development of the story?
The main urban setting is in Portland, Oregon – which has been a huge source of inspiration, atmosphere and character development. I’ve used Portland in all four of my books. It’s such a fun, weird, beautiful city. Perfect setting for dragons and magic and love.
I also created a magical dragon sanctuary called “Dracan” where the dragons hide out from the humans. Very fun.
If you had to write your memoir in five words, what would you write?
She lived a happy life.
How often does your muse distract you from day to day minutiae?
What do readers have to look forward to in the future from you?
More regular newsletters with a continued free serial read of a fun short story involving the Draca. Another book…which will most likely feature dragons – of course!
Title: Unbidden Dragon
Author: Louisa Kelley
Publisher: Loose-Id LLC
Cover Artist: Syneca Featherstone
Release Date: May 24 2016
Heat Level: 3- 4
Length: approximately 50,000 words
Genre/Tags: Paranormal Romance, Lesbian Fantasy Romance, Urban Fantasy
Goodreads Link: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30285027-unbidden-dragon
Publisher Site: http://www.loose-id.com/unbidden-dragon.html?___SID=U
Amazon US: https://amzn.com/B01G48P2AY
Maeven is on a mission. One big and bold enough for her coming-of-age quest called the Fieri, and important enough to gain her a trip off Dracan, the secret, hidden sanctuary of the dragon shape-shifters.
Success in her once-in-a-lifetime challenge means everything - respect, honor, and the bestowal of her full magical powers. Not to mention doing something vital for the survival of her species.
She’s given strict rules of behavior while living in earth society. Rule number one: keep her true nature hidden. Rule number two: no emotional involvement with humans, despite the age-old, near irresistible attraction between the two races.
Then Maeven meets plucky, devious, adorable Frankie living in Portland, Oregon. Who, as it turns out, accidentally, shockingly, shape-shifted – the night before. Ah. So much for the rules.
Frankie is frustrated with her oddly larcenous life not going anywhere in particular. One fateful weekend, she camps alone in the mountains to gain fresh perspective - with a little help from a baggie of something special. That afternoon, in a crazed, furious confrontation with hunters, Frankie shape-shifts into a dragon. And discovers a race of magical beings who insist she’s one of them, too. Especially the shining, gorgeous, red-head – who promises to teach her so much.
All rights reserved.
SHADOWS CLIMBED THE rough wood walls of the cabin. The flickering candles cast a soft glow as day faded into evening, bathing the room in golden tones. Maeven looked down and realized her blue aura was mingling with the candlelight. She quickly doused the shine. Pesky shape-shifter light. Hardest thing to hide from humans. And impossible to explain. She flashed a look at Frankie, hoping to see more blue light, but Frankie’s pale face seemed even more taut and white.
Frankie avoided her eyes and radiated a palpable sense of unease. Made it hard to breathe, hard to keep a clear head, on multiple levels. Her predator’s instincts salivated; the hunting instinct activated with the enticement of Frankie’s anxiety. Maeven struggled not to react.
Frankie cleared her throat. “Okay if I use the bathroom?”
“Sure, of course. Through that door by the bed.” Maeven pointed in the direction of the bath, then tapped her fingers on the table while she waited….
Maeven glanced at the closed bathroom door. It had been at least ten minutes. No sounds of water running or toilet flushing. Uneasy, Maeven stood up. “Frankie? You doing okay in there?”
“Frankie?” she said louder and knocked on the door. When silence continued, she turned the knob. Locked. She rattled it. “Frankie?” Maeven thrust her hip against the wood a few times with no result. “Oh, blast it to the ninth hell,” she muttered and, with a fierce grip, tore the handle off and, with easy Draca strength, crashed through the pine door.
The window swung wide open, curtains blowing in the cold breeze. “No!” She rushed over and stared into the surrounding yard. Even with the moon, it was so dark Frankie could easily be hiding close by. Why, why was she running?
Maeven raced through the house, her sister-self agitated with excitement. “Chase!” she cried. An irresistible challenge to a Draca.
“Find her,” she said. “Find Frankie.” Predator instincts kicked in; her eyesight changed and cleared; the ability to see in the dark took over. She sniffed the air and caught the scent.
“Fly?” Maeven’s shoulder blades ached where her sister-self strained at the constriction of flesh.
“No, not yet. Run. Fast!” Maeven’s command to her sister-self ignited her into action.
She took off, inhaling the earthy, delicious traces of Frankie’s scent as she raced to catch her. Through the darkened, dense forest of spruce and pine, she dodged fallen logs and trampled through bushes of thorny blackberries, ignoring a hundred spiky digs. In the distance the sounds of Frankie’s panicked breathing carried on an obliging breeze. Maeven ran like a deer, the moonlight guiding the way, with light feet that bounded over any obstacles, nothing slowing her pace. Frankie’s gasps grew closer.
“Frankie! Stop…please! I just want to talk to you.”
“I’m fine,” Frankie yelled. “Leave me alone. I’ll find my own way out!”
Maeven picked up her speed. There—less than ten feet in front of her. Frankie threw a frightened glance over her shoulder, and then her foot hit a stump and she went flying, arms splayed just as Maeven dived to tackle her.
They went down in an explosion of grunts and shrieks. With a nimble twist, Maeven landed on top, spread-eagled over Frankie. She pinned her wrists to the ground and held firm while Frankie bucked and kicked.
“Get the hell off me! What the— Umpff…” Her last words were muffled as Maeven cupped her hand over Frankie’s mouth.
“Frankie,” Maeven said, yanking back on her emotions like taming a tightrope snapping in the wind, “I only want to talk. Please. For God’s sakes, I’m trying to help you.” She lifted her weight up a little but stayed put, knees on either side of Frankie’s hips, and tried not to notice the riot of sensation caused by the soft, shapely body under hers. Her sister-self’s excited cries increased in volume until Maeven could hardly think.
Frankie glared at her and went still.
“Okay?” Maeven asked and raised her hand from Frankie’s mouth while keeping a grip on her wrists. Ignoring her sister-self keening “mineminemine” was impossible. They had chased, they had caught, and her sister demanded reward.
“Fine,” Frankie spit out. “Now get the fuck off.”
Yet Maeven didn’t move, and Frankie remained still and unresisting. Puffs of white breath circled in the growing cold, and she knew they had to get going. Frankie’s eyes gleamed in a shaft of moonlight with anger…and something else. As if caught in a dream spell, she hesitated, unable to take her eyes off Frankie’s lips.
Her Dracan instincts threatened lusty takeover, and Maeven whimpered with conflicted need. The moon had risen to full height in a black sky, and the forest was flooded with brilliant lunar light. Magic. The sanctuary overflowed with aroused shape-shifter sensuality.
Words didn’t have to be necessary for Maeven to find the answers she sought. There were other ways. No. Get up now. Really. She tried to make her muscles move, and nothing happened. Blast it!
She heard Frankie’s indrawn breath like an invitation. Coherent thought fled. She leaned down and pressed her lips to the outline of Frankie’s mouth. For a few seconds, Frankie’s lips softened, opened, and then a small, hard fist shot out and punched Maeven’s cheek. Shocked, she slid off, reeling, into the cold mud and leaves.
Romance and science fiction took firm hold of Louisa Kelley’s imagination at age nine, when she read the books Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott, and the Narnia series, by C.S. Lewis. She is convinced that the genre paranormal romance, which developed years later, came into existence purely for her benefit. After all, it’s what’s been in her heart all these years.
She resides in Portland, Oregon where, in a strangely perfect combination of rainy winters and urban skyline, her writing inspiration abounds. Meet the sexy world that’s been evolving in her fevered brain…She’d love you to join her in some over-the-top erotic adventures with the Draca; dragon shape-shifters of a very different kind.
Member of Romance Writers of America
Member of Rose City Romance Writers
Member of Rose City Romance Writers
Rafflecopter Prize: $10 Amazon Gift Card