2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog. Have a bitchin’ new year, ya’ll.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,200 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 53 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

#WednesdayFreeWrite – SOLITUDE



It is in
the solitude of our togetherness
that I am able
to touch your soul
hear your heart
kiss your mind

the quiet
wraps itself around us
cocooned in a blanket
of arms

and in those moments
when your breath
leaves lines of heat
along the curves
of my being
your fingers trace
circles of desire
around my breasts
your tongue tastes
the sweetness
of my need
I feel craved

It is in
the solitude of our togetherness
that I am able
to admit my shortcomings and insecurities

You hear them
ponder my words
then insist otherwise
because you see me
in ways
I cannot fathom
and would hardly admit

Strength of character
beauty beyond belief
wisdom and wit
and conjugated
different parts
making the whole me
you see

It is in
the solitude of our togetherness
that I am able
to read you a poem
laugh at a joke
cry in despair

the comfort
of your presence
both shocks
and soothes me
your smile

Everything that is you
speaks to me
in silence
and wonder
everything that is me
speaks to you
in quiet
and awe
“You are not like the others”
you whisper
and I smile
“No, I am not”

It is in
the solitude of our togetherness
that I am able
to breathe again
and you are able
to learn

My #WednesdayFreeWrite series is based on what I write during the 10 minutes allotted my writing group’s Wednesday Prompt. As always, these pieces are works of fiction, erupting from my incredibly over-active imagination. They are unedited and unscripted, super loose and probably my favorite ten minutes of the week. They are perfect in their imperfections and I hope you enjoy.

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The Devil’s Disease (Shades Below, #2) – Excerpt


The Wayfare Hotel for Restless Spirits was every bit as spooky as he remembered.

MacMillian wedged his dark green Plymouth Fury into a spot alongside The Panhandle, and stared across the street at the vast old Victorian.  Was it him, or had it expanded since he’d last been here?  That was impossible, of course.  Even so, he could have sworn several of the turrets were new.

Lena waited until he had hoisted himself from the car, then started across the street.  MacMillian headed after her with a wince.  He should have known better than to sit for so long.  Now he was paying for it.  Lena glanced behind her.  He schooled his face to a neutral expression.  Judging by the way her eyebrows drew together, she wasn’t fooled.

She didn’t mention it, merely metered her steps to match his as though it were the most natural thing in the world.  They climbed the steep front steps together, crossed the stoop to the massive front door.

Lena turned to him.  “Before we go inside, there’s something you should know.”

MacMillian shifted his weight to his cane.  “All right.”

She twisted the strap of her purse.  “You’re going to meet someone.  He’s…not like anyone you’ve seen before.”

MacMillian snorted.  “Since I’ve known you, I’ve met ghosts, a necromancer, a zombie, a knight, and a librarian for God.  So unless you’re telling me vampires and werewolves are real too…”  He trailed off at the look on her face.  “They’re not.  Are they?”

Lena shifted.  “It’s a little more complicated than—”

He held up a hand.  “Please.  Yes or no.”

“Well, yes.”

MacMillian stared.

Lena continued hurriedly.  “But technically, lycanthropy is a disease.  Therians have complete control over their shifts, and are no danger to humans.  Anyway, that’s not what this is about.”

MacMillian felt light-headed.  “So, a vampire.”

At that moment, the door to the house swung inward.  MacMillian jerked his eyes from Lena’s face.  A tall, athletic-looking man with disheveled blond hair and a sardonic expression leaned against the door frame.

“I find ‘vampire’ rather a loaded word, don’t you?”  The man crossed his arms over his broad chest.  His black leather jacket creaked.  “I personally prefer the term ‘sangretarian.’”

MacMillian looked to Lena.

She cleared her throat.  “Jesper MacMillian, meet Seneca Lynch.”

MacMillian swallowed, then swallowed again.  Vampires were real.  He took a moment to wrap his head around that.  He’d grown up hearing about them; Babko and some of the other elders of the kumpania told stories all the time.  He’d thought that was all they were: stories.  Outdated superstition left over from the old country.

What else could he have been wrong about?

He took a deep breath and turned back to the stranger.  There didn’t seem to be anything overtly diabolical about him.  He was pale, but not unnaturally so.  A faint smattering of freckles dusted the skin under his sharp gray eyes.

Lynch took a step back.  “So this is your mundane detective.”  He jerked his chin at MacMillian’s cane.  “What’s the matter?  Couldn’t find one with all his parts in working order?”

MacMillian bristled.  Lena laid a hand on his arm, and he glanced down at her.  The scowl on her face surprised him.  She glowered at Lynch.  “Let’s get something straight.  Cyrus might not mind you being a dick, but I do.  You came to us, in case it’s slipped your mind.  If this is how you’re going to behave, you’re on your own.”

Lynch’s eyebrows went up.  He studied them without a word.  MacMillian didn’t move.  Lena still gripped his arm a little too tightly.  Any looser, and he would have missed the fact she was trembling.

Lynch pursed his lips.  Then he inclined his head.  “Well, then.  Please accept my sincere apologies, Mr. MacMillian.”

Something in his voice still rankled, but MacMillian put it out of his mind.  He hadn’t come here for Seneca Lynch, after all.  He gave Lena’s hand a brief, reassuring touch, waited until she let go before stepping over the threshold and into the reception hall.  “Lena mentioned Cyrus would fill me in.”

“Big brother Cyrus is currently packing for a trip.”  Lynch folded his hands in front of him.  “I’m afraid you’ll have to make do with me.”

“Trip?”  Lena’s forehead furrowed.  “He didn’t tell me about any trip.”

“It just came up.”

They all turned.  At the opposite end of the hall, Cyrus stood atop of the grand staircase.  He started down, a battered duffel slung over his shoulder.  He reached the bottom and strode across the marble floor, extended a hand and gripped MacMillian’s in a firm shake.  “Thanks for coming.  I know this probably screws up your social calendar.”

MacMillian shrugged.  “What’s the saying?  ‘Neither snow nor rain nor gloom of night…’?”

Cyrus smirked.  “Something like that.”  He turned to Lena.  “Sorry I didn’t tell you sooner.  Emil just gave me a call.  He and Puzzle want me to meet them in New Orleans.”

Lena made a face.  “Bad time for a party weekend.”

Cyrus shrugged.  “All he said was they needed my help.  It’s some kind of job, and they want someone with my experience.”

Lynch chuckled.  “Experience.  Right.”

MacMillian looked back and forth between the three of them.  It seemed he was the only one not in on the joke.

Cyrus hefted the duffle a little higher on his shoulder.  “Anyway, I can give you the jist of things, but then I have to bug out.”  He blew out a breath.  “Last night, there was an incident at a place called Hell Maus.  It’s a goth club in SOMA.”

“Incident.”  MacMillian narrowed his eyes.  “What kind of incident?”

“Someone walked in and murdered everyone inside.”

MacMillian raised an eyebrow.

“Come now, Cyrus, give it to the man straight.”  Lynch crossed his arms.  “It wasn’t just ‘someone’.  It was a Son.”

MacMillian turned to him.  “A Son?”

Lynch groaned.  “Forgive me, of course, you’re a mundane.  A Son of Lazarus.  It’s how those of my kind refer to ourselves.  Maus is one of our clubs.”

MacMillian suppressed a frown.  “Noted.”

Cyrus continued.  “Anyway, you can guess how far the police are likely to get with this.  Lynch asked Lena and I to look into it.  He and I go way back, so I agreed.  Trouble is, I’m no detective, and, well, this is the sort of job that needs a detective.”

MacMillian nodded slowly.  “And I’m the only detective you know.”

“No.”  Cyrus met his eyes.  “You’re the only detective I trust.”


The Devil’s Disease is coming in early 2016!


#WednesdayFreeWrite – MAGIC TOUCH



There have been many
in my bed
on my body
trying to capture my soul
but none like him

He is magic
All of him
And he wraps me
In his web of wonder
Every time our paths cross

“I’ll come down”
and before I know it
his warmth is at my side
his gaze that fills me with lust
his smile that charms

and I smile
because I know
he is going to lean close
touch my face
and kiss me
a brush
that leaves me
lips parted
and breathless

I reply
eyes closed
mouth curved in delight

He takes my hand
and we’re headed upstairs
chatting about our days
our meetings
our lives not lived in each other’s presence

Until we’re not

And I’m pressed against the wall
his rough kiss at my throat
his hands on my face
his everything against me

“God, your skin”
he breathes against my curves
as his lips touch and tease
all my spots
he has painstakingly discovered
as my clothes disappear
until all that’s left
is a damp slip of silk
between my thighs

“These are fucking sexy”
he smirks
as his fingers move
over my panties
his gaze never leaving mine
his eyes full of heat and mischief
“and totally worthless”
as he rips them off
tosses them aside
and touches me

“Don’t stop”
I beg
but he doesn’t listen
and flips me around
to face the wall
while he kisses my neck
traces heat down my spine
cups my behind
and I feel him smile into my skin
“Your ass is a crime”

But what he doesn’t understand
will never know
because I will never tell
is that everything
about him
is criminal

The way he smiles

The way he challenges

that has somehow
in this big city
of faceless millions
crossed my path
made my acquaintance
seduced my mind
then charmed off my panties
and fucked me blind

makes my breath catch
my nipples hard
my pussy drip
and gets my world
spinning so fast
I can only close my eyes
and let him do his thing
(and holy shit
can he do his thing)

But I will never
whisper such truths
into his ear
breathe such intimacies
into his skin
kiss such affections
into his soul

I will hold them
for myself
if only
to hold onto
all of his MAGIC
and every single TOUCH
a little longer

My #WednesdayFreeWrite series is based on what I write during the 10 minutes allotted my writing group’s Wednesday Prompt. As always, these pieces are works of fiction, erupting from my incredibly over-active imagination. They are unedited and unscripted, super loose and probably my favorite ten minutes of the week. They are perfect in their imperfections and I hope you enjoy.

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Holiday #Giveaway @GCReading @writermama @Skye_Malone @writer_dean @jclillis @KNRwrites @MadhuriBlaylock

If you’ve ever been interested in getting print copies of our badass books *flips hair* you’re more than welcome to place an entry and join Sky Malone’s epic giveaway (psst, that means swag for days and six books to help you survive the winter). Have at it!

Reading Renee


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Skye Malone’s AWAKEN

Running away from home was never Chloe Kowalski’s plan.
Neither was ending up the target of killers, or having her body change in
unusual ways. She only wanted a vacation, someplace far from her crazy parents
and their irrational fear of water. She only wanted to do something normal for once, and maybe get to know
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#TeaserTuesday – AMAL

I posted a little of AMAL, my love story without a title but with a character with a great name, on my blog over at Madhuri Blaylock Writes a while back. It’s my first time writing a regular romance and even though the story has been bouncing around in my head for a hot second, the thought to actually write it down has not. Mostly because I’m a girl who loves her raunch with some magic, but Amal and her men are kind of fun and all kinds of dirty, so as long as they demand my attention, I’m going with the flow and writing their story.

Anyway, I figure today is as good a day as any to share a little more of Amal, Jackson, and Andrew…enjoy.

I saw her long before she saw me, mostly because I was looking, completely incapable of casting my glance anywhere but the door every time it opened. Dax was right, even from across the room, Jackson was a force to be reckoned with, stealing the show the minute he and Amal crossed the threshold. But she was just as brilliant, possibly even more so in her slight hesitance and discomfort with the introductions and salutations. She smiled and laughed and charmed everyone Jackson knew, but here and there her jaw would clench or she would glance around as if somewhat bored by the fuss and in those moments, I knew she was here, at this party, by his side, for him and him alone. That she loved Jackson so much she willingly slogged through the inanity of the bourgeousie because it mattered to him.

I wondered if he knew what a lucky fuck he was?

Maybe he did, but most likely he was past the point of such ruminations. I did my research, Amal and Jackson had been a couple for more than three years, with some slight breaks here and there, but always coming back to one another. So yeah, I’m sure once upon a time he viewed her through the same prism as I, but based upon his body language with the attractive older woman who couldn’t stop touching him and fawning over every word he uttered, I gathered Amal was no longer the center of his everything. Not that Jackson didn’t love her, but he probably loved himself a little more.

Just my two cents.

“Has no one ever told you it’s incredibly rude to gawk at another man’s woman?”

Laughter and a smack on the back brought me face-to-face with one of my oldest friends, Philippe Narcisse, Afro-French beautiful bastard but for the gash running down the side of his face, care of a terrible childhood car accident. We met during a skateboard camp in London the summer we turned twelve and had been thick as thieves ever since. While I was busy learning the ropes at Maynard Brothers, he was running one of the most successful custom tailors in the city. Bespoke was that motherfucker’s middle name.

“Fuck you,” I tossed back the remains of my whiskey and set the glass down on the bar.

“You mean fuck her,” Philippe laughed and ordered a scotch, “and if you don’t, goddamn, I will.”

I raised a brow and shot him a look.

“You’re taken,” I informed as I brought another whiskey to my lips, “and last time I checked, so is she.”

“Yes, yes, so I’ve heard a million times since she walked into the room,” Philippe cast a glance Amal’s way, his eyes resting on her ass because seriously, how could they not, “apparently, she doesn’t do these things. Ever. But she’s here tonight and for some reason it’s a big, fucking deal.”

Philippe laughed mischievously before adding, “I don’t care why she’s here, I’m just glad she is because fuuuuuuck, that ass makes me think some wicked shit. I’m not even an ass man and she’s got me wanting to put my face all up in her shit.”

“All right, all right,” I glared at my friend and he grinned.

“I knew it, Maynard,” Philippe tossed his head in Amal’s direction, “spit it out. I know you, motherfucker, and I know you know her.”

“I don’t know her any more than you do.”

“You cannot bullshit a bullshitter,” Philippe raised a brow in my direction, “I want the story, with all the juicy bits, like how that ass feels when you’ve got your hands all over it.”

“Fucking christ, man,” I shot back, “back off.”

Philippe leaned back on his heels, studied me for a second, then burst into deep peals of laughter, so loud several heads at the bar turned our way, curious as to his amusement. I tossed back my whiskey and ordered another, amusing my friend even further. He smacked me on the back again and kissed my cheek, long and loud and sloppy.

“Come on, man,” I pushed him off me, “control yourself.”

“I believe one Amal Naipaul has gotten under the skin of New York City’s most eligible bachelor,” Philippe grinned, “so as much as it pains me, in respect to you and because I love you like a brother, I shall cease making filthy cracks about her splendid ass.”

“I’m certain the very lovely Sylvie, who last time I checked is your very devoted and stunning girlfriend, would love to hear all the filth escaping your lips concerning a certain derriere.”

Philippe stole another glance at Amal and sucked in his breath, “mais oui, Sylvie would love to hear it and then join in my admiration, being the ass woman that she is.”

I couldn’t help but laugh. He was incorrigible.

“For the record, her name is Amal Warrier Naipaul,” I tipped my drink in his direction and smirked, “and she is the most stunning woman ever created.”

Philippe let my words sink in for a second, took a sip of his drink, and shook his head while shaking a warning finger in my face. I pushed his hand away and waited for whatever advice I knew my friend could not help dispensing.

“Did you fuck her, Andrew?”

“Nah, man,” I shook my head, “not at all.”

He squinted his eyes and waited, as if by doing so he could tell whether or not I was being truthful. “Did you think about fucking her?”

“The second I saw her and every second afterwards,” I admitted to him and myself, “until I learned of Jackson. And then I forgot her.”

“Now you’re lying, Maynard,” Philippe squeezed my shoulder affectionately, “no one forgets an ass like that. But if you didn’t fuck her, what’d you do? Dinner? Drinks? Spill it.”

“Just a chat, and if I’m being honest, it probably didn’t last longer than five minutes.”

“Longest five fucking minutes of your life, my friend,” Philippe noted, “that much’s written all over your face.”

I started to protest when long, lean, arms circled my waist and warm lips pressed to my neck. Sylvie. Only Sylvie could make the simplest hello so goddamned sexy.

Mon cher,” she whispered in my ear as she ran a perfectly manicured hand down Philipp’s arm, “my two sexies…the things we could do together,” she whispered as she slipped between us and settled herself onto Philippe’s lap. He pulled her close and sucked on her ear while Sylvie practically purred in delight. It was sensual and endearing and so very Philippe and Sylvie.

“Get a room,” I groused.

“With Amal’s name on it? Happily,” Philippe joked and immediately pricked Sylvie’s interest, something I knew he intended.

“Amal?” Sylvie’s eyes widened as she played with the rim of her champagne flute, “as in Naipaul? As in Doctors for Hope?”

“As in Jackson Davis’s girlfriend,” Philippe added with a laugh.

Sylvie rolled her eyes as she kissed his cheek, “ignore him, Andrew, he’s a horrible gossip and probably loves the fact you haven’t been able to take your eyes off that woman all night.”

And now it was Sylvie’s turn to look rather impish and incorrigible.

“Fuck both of you,” and they laughed as Sylvie pulled me close for a kiss.

“She is lovely and her behind has me captivated,” Sylvie whispered in my ear, “but she is very taken and he is very tall and incredibly strong and impossibly fuckable. Just please watch your heart,” and she kissed me again before leaning back into Philippe’s embrace.

I touched her furrowed brow as if to smooth it out and smiled, “you have nothing to worry about, Sylvie. My heart is as cold and dead as ever.”

It’s raw and needs some serious editing, but it’s getting there. I love Philippe, just haven’t decided how large a role he’ll play. The way I do things, those kind of details work themselves out as the story progresses, so we shall see. Fingers crossed for Mr. Narcisse.

Also, Andrew is totally David Gandy, mostly because this is my story and Andrew is my character and god, if I don’t LOVE me some David Gandy. Don’t even try and act like you mind…you know you don’t.


Thanks for reading.

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