Sunday, May 22, 2016

Talking with author Linda Mooney

Would You Like Mustard, Horseradish, and Honey With Your Fries?
by Linda Mooney

I just made myself a banana, peanut butter, and chocolate protein powder smoothie. For lunch I had a grilled chicken, avocado, swiss cheese, and bacon sandwich. So is it any wonder my latest release is a sci-fi, Steampunk, western romance?

The days of plain old steak and potatoes are long gone.

For decades genres were singular and straightforward. You either read a contemporary romance or a historical one. If you wanted sci-fi, be prepared for a tale that might include a kiss, but had lots of shoot-‘em-up action and space ships. Same for a western, except with horses providing the transportation. There was no mish-mashing of genres, which made it pretty simple for bookstores and libraries to categorize each volume.

But with the advent of e-publishing, the straight and plain has taken a backseat to multi-genre stories. It’s become the age-old question of which came first, the chicken or the egg? In other words, did authors tire of writing the same old same old? Or were readers wanting something different to spice up a tried and true recipe? Perhaps it was a little of both?

Stories have now become as mixed as the most intricate recipes by Julia Childs. You can have your dystopian with YA, NA, or GLBT, with a side of sci-fi, contemporary, or mystery. Fantasies are sometimes epic. They can also be paranormal, urban, contemporary, high, or low. Time traveling can be futuristic, historic, post-apocalyptic, or sci-fi. Shapeshifters can be wolves, ducks, snakes, bears, or any species you can think of.

And that’s not even the tip of the iceberg.

So my question is this—when you’re looking for your next book to read, do you search by one particular genre, or several? Do you like the way stories now include a mixture of several genres, or do you prefer books that keep to one category? More importantly, are you willing to try a story that includes a combination of genres that you’ve never seen combined before? If you’re willing to try something new, here’s a little teaser from MINE UNTIL MIDNIGHT, my sensuous sci-fi, Steampunk western romance that includes aliens, shape shifters, and cyborgs!

As soon as they were inside the tiny bedroom, Haulk closed and locked the door. He walked over to the single window on the opposite side of the bed and checked the view. It was of the back of the building and afforded little in the way of knowing what was going on outside. But in the distance he thought he could make out in the deepening darkness the landing pad where his ship was docked. He pressed his collar button.
            There was no answer.
            “Juliet, can you read me?”
            He glanced up to see the woman retreating to a far corner of the room, away from the door and him. She continued to stare at him with those blank eyes, but she appeared hesitant. Waiting. Perhaps afraid. Haulk didn’t blame her in the least for her feelings of apprehension. He gave a loud sigh and shook his head. “You don’t have to worry about me. I’m not going to force you to do anything while I’m here, so relax.”
            The woman raised a hand to her throat and made a slicing motion. Haulk narrowed his eyes, curious, as she then raised a finger to her lips, then pointed that same finger to something overhead. He resisted looking at what she was indicating, although he was curious to know why she had signaled for him to be quiet.
            “What’s your name?”
            She gave a single shake of her head.
            He asked again, using Uraggo and Mantisi. She continued to give him that same blank look. He grunted and tried to raise Juliet once more.
            “Juliet, if you can’t speak, beep me.”
            Continued silence.
            “They’ve installed a damper in the building. You can’t call out, and no one can call in.”
            Haulk gave the woman a surprised look. She’d spoken in Purlish, a dialect he’d swear wasn’t known in this region of space, since the Purla system was hundreds of light years away.
            “How do you know that?” he replied, also in Purlish.
            She suddenly hurried toward him and threw her arms around his waist. Lifting her face to his, she whispered, “Take me out of here when you go. Please.” There was no mistaking her desperation.
            Taking her arms, he was about to disengage himself from her embrace when she added, “They are watching and listening to us.”
            Haulk froze. Now he understood what she was trying to warn him about, and why she was doing so in such an obscure language. Propping his chin on top of her head, he pretended to be enjoying her touch, which he was, damn it. But he still managed to scope out the corner she’d backed into. Because he knew what he was looking for, he was able to spot it, hidden in the lower section of the light sconce. He nuzzled the top of her head. “Sorry, sweetheart. I’m riding on thin ice already. If I try to abscond with one of Yarnell’s treasures, he’ll have no bones about taking me down for theft.”
            The last thing he expected was for her to grab one of his blasters and leap backwards. He stared unconcerned at the loaded end of the barrel, until she used her little finger to disengage the safety. The woman knew her way around a Denebollan pistol?
            Who the hell was she?
            He slowly raised his hands and avoided reaching for his remaining weapon. “Whoa, now. Why don’t you give that back to me before someone gets hurts, namely me?” He started to hold out a hand, palm up, when she stroked the power lever, raising it from stun to kill.
            “Listen tight,” she whispered in Purlish with a tight voice. “I’m going to fire this once, but I’m going to miss you. Come at me and pretend you’re struggling to get it out of my grasp. I’ll take out the camera and microphone while we’re at it. But we have to hurry before they come in here to check on us!”
            He barely had time to let her words sink in when she fired. The photon beam missed his ear, but grazed his collar, enough to where he smelled burning cloth.
            Haulk lunged at her and pretended to struggle for possession of the weapon. She gave him a hard shove. He fell onto the bare floor with her on top and quickly rolled over to where she was looking up at the ceiling. With both of them holding the blaster, she fired again, just past his shoulder. He heard a hiss, then a buzz.
            The bedroom door burst open and two men entered with their own pistols drawn as Haulk jerked the blaster from the young woman’s hands to aim it at the intruders. Glaring at them, he snarled.
            “What the hell! Can’t a man have a little privacy in here?”
            “We heard a commotion,” the guy in front, a Marebanon, replied.
            “What’s your problem? I have everything under control,” Haulk told them scathingly. “I have until midnight to tame this little hussy, or didn’t you hear? Now get the fuck out of my room!”
            “But we—”
            Cocking the blaster, he fired one shot into the ceiling above their heads. “I said now!
            He caught one of the guys eyeing the disintegrated light sconce with its hidden camera and mic, but said nothing. Eventually, the two left. Haulk quickly got to his feet and closed the door, but found the lock was shattered.
            “Step aside,” the woman brusquely ordered. He noticed she held a chair in her hands. Moving back, he watched as she shoved it underneath the locking mechanism. It wasn’t enough to keep someone from barging in again, but at least it would give them some privacy from anyone standing outside on the landing.
            The woman took a deep breath. Walking over to the other side of the bed, she sat on the edge furthest away from him and waited. The blank look was gone from her greenish-brown eyes. Instead, Haulk saw fierce determination and something more.
            A fire.
            The need to survive.
            He took a step toward her. It was the wrong move to make. The woman immediately jumped to her feet and retreated to the window. Her arms and hands came up in a defensive posture he recognized with surprise. She’d been taught Elis Abarran kill methods.
            He mentally placed another notch in her who-the-hell-is-she column.
            Perching his hands on his hips, he shook his head. “Yeah, you would take a flying leap to get away from me, wouldn’t you?” When she didn’t reply, he went over to the wall where the ruined light continued to drip burning metal onto the floor. Leaning against the metal paneling, he crossed his arms over his chest. “Trust me, sweetheart, you have nothing to fear from me.”
            “How do I know I can trust you?” she asked, still using Purlish.
            “You don’t. All I’m concerned about is making it through these next few hours alive, then getting back to my ship and off this hellhole of a planet by dawn.” He adjusted his stance, then he remembered the wad of script in his pocket. Haulk pulled it out and dumped it on the bed. “Guess I can pretty much write off not getting any of this converted into creds before I leave.”
            The woman snorted. “Since I’ve been here, I can count on two fingers how many people managed to beat Yarnell at his own game. The rest of the time, strangers stay until they run out of money, or they hit their third loss. On most occasions, it’s both at the same time.”
            “Oh? Am I number two?”
            “And what happened to number one?”
            “What do you think happened to him?” She pointed out the window. “That’s his N3 still sitting out there where he parked it four months ago.”
            “Four months ago?” Haulk raised an eyebrow at her. “How long have you been here?”
            “By this planet’s calendar, going on five months.”
            “And you’re anxious to get away from here. I take it you’re not a native.”
            Astonishingly, she switched to Fen Dor Chubian, an equally nondescript language. “No, I’m not. It’s a long story, Haulk.”
            He chuckled and replied in same. “Well, it seems we have a little time to kill before I make my move.”
            She gave him a guarded but hopeful look. “Does this mean you’ll help me?”
            “It means I haven’t decided. Not until I know a bit more about you. If I make a break for it, I’m about ninety-nine percent certain I can make it on my own. But if I have you tagging along, my odds drop drastically. You gotta prove to me you’re worth the risk.”
            The woman took another deep breath, then tucked strands of her long brown hair behind her ears. With the wall sconce demolished, the only other light in the room came from the single candle burning on the nightstand by the bed. Its glow made her face appear even more ethereal. She pointed to the other side of the bed.
            “I understand. All right. Have a seat. This might take a while. By the way, my name’s Remi Clysonne, and I’m an officer of the Carpellian Sector of the Interstellar Police Agency.”

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A wife, mother, grandmother, and retired Kindergarten and music teacher, she lives in a small south Texas town near the Gulf coast where she delves into other worlds filled with daring exploits, adventure, and intense love.
She has numerous best sellers, including 10 consecutive #1s. In 2009, she was named Whiskey Creek Press Torrid's Author of the Year, and her book My Strength, My Power, My Love was named the 2009 WCPT Book of the Year. In 2011, her book Lord of Thunder was named the Epic Ebook "Eppie" Award Winner for Best Erotic Sci-Fi Romance.
In addition, she write naughty erotic romances under the name of Carolyn Gregg, and horror under the pseudonym of Gail Smith.

For more information about Linda Mooney books and titles, and to sign up for her newsletter, please visit her website.

1 comment:

Linda Mooney said...

Thanks for letting me be on your blog, Dawn! :D

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