Friday, December 28, 2018

Win Books, Necklace, Crystal . . . and More.

Cool giveaway on The Mary Sue!
I can't enter, but you can.
Ends 1/04/19

Friday, December 21, 2018

Celebrating the Winter Solstice

Chloe’s Five Winter Solstice Wishes

Chloe Winslow is the main character in HIS DARK MAGIC, Northern Circle Coven book 1. Though she grew up in an influential family of witches, she has recently struck out on her own and joined the infamous Northern Circle coven. This is the first Winter Solstice that she’ll be spending with them instead of her family. The holiday season always been one of her favorite times of the year. She loves the smell of Yule trees and hot mulled cider, and the music from all the different celebrations. Most of all she loves lighting the solstice bonfire and calling the sun back from the land of shadows. However, since this is her first time celebrating away from her family and their traditions, she has five special wishes that she hopes comes true.  

5. Chloe’s looking forward to celebrating Solstice Night in the company of the entire Northern Circle, but she’s hoping at some point during December to spend a  quiet evening sipping some of the coven’s wine and watching Love Actually. She absolutely loves the movie and the holidays wouldn’t be the same without see it at least once.

4. She’s also hoping that her new friends don’t mind if she plays Little Mix’s Love Me Like You(Christmas Mix) a bit obsessively. It’s not a traditional holiday song, but it makes her smile and feel like dancing. Besides, this year, she really feels like the luckiest girl as far as guys go.

3. Gift giving isn’t technically a part of the Winter Solstice tradition. However, her family always exchanged presents: homemade treats, cozy sweaters, special candles with herbs and flowers imbedded in the wax . . . She’s planning on getting Devlin a new shirt from L.L. Bean and a big snuggly toy for his Golden Retriever. She’s crossing her fingers that he’s been listening to her hints about how much she adores watermelon tourmaline and would love a new charm for her bracelet.

2. As far as holiday food goes, Chloe plans on making her family’s hot cider recipe and almond moon cookies. But there’s something else she’d like to enjoy on the morning after Solstice Night. The first night she spent with Devlin, she discovered that he makes an amazing cheesy bacon frittata. Not only did the frittata taste great, watching him cook it was pretty tasty as well.  

1. Top on her list—and this is actually a wish she knows will come true—she’s dying to check out all the local holiday events and see how other people in her new community celebrate the Winter Solstice.

You can see all Chloe’s wishes here, as well as Winter Solstice crafts and celebration ideas.

If you’d like to learn more about the Winter Solstice in general here’s an interesting VPR broadcast.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Almond Moon Cookies: A Timeout from the Holiday Rush

The holiday season is packed with things to do and places to go. It’s easy to become overwhelmed if you don’t take time to relax and rejuvenate. One of the best ways to do this is to reserve a quite evening or even just an hour for yourself. Shut off social media and your phone, light a candle and enjoy a cup of tea while you listen to music or read a book. I suggest a tea with a gentle aroma and flavor like jasmine tea paired with a buttery-sweet cookie like almond moons. Almond moons are named after their crescent shape that honors the new moon. The new moon is a time for quiet reflection and new beginnings. It’s all about for planning how to move forward.

Almond Moons

(makes approximately 3 dozen cookies)

1 cup softened butter
8 ounces softened cream cheese
2 cups granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon almond extract
3-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ cup slivered almonds
Chocolate frosting

In large bowl cream butter and softened cream cheese together until light and fluffy.  Add sugar, egg, vanilla, and almond extract. Beat until well blended. 

In separate bowl combine flour and baking powder. Gradually add flour mixture to creamed mixture, beating after each addition until thoroughly blended into soft dough. 

Cover bowl and refrigerate for at least one hour. Dough can be chilled overnight. 

Scoop out tablespoons of dough onto lightly floured surface and form into small 2 inch logs. Bend logs into crescent moon shape and place on ungreased cookie sheet. When shaping moons remember that dough will rise and expand slightly as it cooks. 

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until bottom is golden brown. Some golden brown will show around edges of cookies. 

Cool cookies, then drizzle with your favorite chocolate glaze or spread chocolate frosting along inner edge of cookie to accent moon shape. Press slivered almonds into soft glaze or frosting. 

These cookies keep well in the freezer, so be sure to stash a few away for that much needed holiday timeout. 

Sunday, December 9, 2018

His Dark Magic release day giveaway!

Win a witchy gift pack: mug, striped socks, cocoa . . . swag! 
To enter, comment on my Facebook giveaway post and say where you either have ordered or plan on leaving a review for HIS DARK MAGIC. 

I'll draw two winners on December 11th at midnight (EST).

Monday, December 3, 2018

The Importance of Strong Women in Romance Novels

I'm on Kensington Publishing's Hobby Reads talking about the importance of strong woman in romance novels--which doesn't necessarily refer to women in leather who kick butt . . . READ HERE

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Sneak peek at HIS DARK MAGIC

Can't wait to read HIS DARK MAGIC?

 Check out this sneak peek.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Happenings & HIS DARK MAGIC paperbacks!

Pre-order signed paperbacks!

December 22, 10-2: signing. Eloquent Page. St. Albans, VT

January 12 at 2pm: event and signing. Phoenix Bookstore. Burlington, VT should be super fun because HIS DARK MAGIC is set in downtown Burlington).

December 3-21  Deck the Halls With Books! Blog tour including a fun Facebook party on the 12th.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Two Questions with . . . R J Theodore ~ Halloween Edition

Happy Halloween week to everyone. For this special occasion, I’m totally thrilled to share an interview with the super creative and amazing author, RJ Theodore.  

Hi Pat! Thanks so much for hosting me for another edition of "Two Questions with..."! I'm excited to share the season with my fellow Halloween enthusiasts.

9 Which Horror Tropes do you love to twist/would love to see twisted?
The cosmic horror. It’s still attributed to the racist, bigoted, xenophobic Howard Phillips Lovecraft long after his death. In my opinion, he needs to have that mantle stripped away, and the “cosmic horror” genre reclaimed in the name of people who deserve the attention. There are amazing stories still to be told that can come from beyond the realm of understanding, and we need to stop pointing backward toward the most famous and controversial roots to really explore where else these stories can take us and measure them based on their own merit. So my twist would be to invent a new mythos, create new ineffable beings, and stop acknowledging HPL as the origin of our new creative works.

10 What is your go-to scary/Halloween movie
Perhaps it’s cheating, because it’s an anthology and therefor I don’t have to choose, but my go-to Halloween movie is, hands down, Trick ‘R Treat. It’s a werewolf story, a serial killer story, a guilty-conscience/rise from the dead for revenge, and a cautionary tale story all rolled together into a movie about one night in a small US town’s Halloween celebration.

My favorite part about it is the concept that the holiday, however commercial it’s become, still has rules from its Pagan tradition, and woe be the one who breaks those rules.    


R J Theodore is a graphic designer, illustrator, and author. Her first series of novels, the Peridot Shift series, launched in March 2018 with the publication of FLOTSAM through Parvus Press. A Science Fiction and Fantasy enthusiast of any format, she draws from a lifetime of SFF influences to craft stories with irreverent physics, irresponsible gods, and unforgettable characters. She writes both long-form novels and shorter works, including the ongoing self-published Phantom Traveler novella series which began with THE BANTAM and continues, one episode at a time, for her supporters on Patreon.

Mx. Theodore first began inventing worlds before she could spell the words it took to describe them. Her earliest stories were rendered in pipe cleaners, shoe boxes, and modified plastic milk jugs. There is, somewhere on a floppy disk in a landfill, a partially written Star Trek fanfic that the Parvus Press team would pay a bounty to retrieve. Of Mx. Theodore’s more recent story crafting, SFF author Jennifer Foehner Wells says, “R J Theodore is a fresh voice who will soon be on your must-read list!"
Mx. Theodore is fueled by coffee and churrasco.


THE BANTAM (A Phantom Traveler Novella):
Ehli never expected much from her life. She’s an Iscillian, designed in a lab to serve as custodian for a Xendari merchant crew, with no future beyond the warranty of their starship. When she reads two previously overlooked lines in the ship’s operations manual that cast doubt on everything she thought she knew about her existence, the satisfaction she once found in her simple life dissolves into an unsettling obsession with learning the truth.

She is expected to report for duty, complete her assignments, and rest until her next shift. To put the needs of the ship and crew before her own. She knows better than to expect the oh-so-vertebrate Xendari to help her find the answers she craves, but every step she takes investigating her origins – and that of all Iscillian serving as bioaccessories across the galaxy – takes her further from the life she knew, and deeper into danger.

But she can’t ignore what she’s learned. She must know what secrets have been kept from her, and she’s willing to risk everything to uncover them.

Friday, October 26, 2018

HIS DARK MAGIC pre-order special price 2.99. 
Barnes & Noble:
Google Play:

Monday, October 22, 2018

Two Questions With . . . Janet Walden-West ~ Halloween Edition

This week for Two Questions With . . . Halloween Edition, I’ve lured Janet Walden-West on to my blog. Welcome, Janet. 

Hi Pat,  I’m thrilled to be back, this time talking all things dark and disturbing.

What Horror trope do you love to exploit?

Vampires. All the vampires.

My love for the vampire mythos, in all its iterations, will never die. Same as my adoration of puns.

It’s fascinating that almost every culture has some form of vampire in its folklore and mythology. Traditional undead Western blood suckers. Versions that live off of emotions or energy. Floating heads that can separate from the body and hunt prey in the tropical darkness.

Most versions are also unapologetically evil of course. But I was intrigued by a few cultures that saw their vampires as neutral beings. Not sparkly or good, but no better or worse than the average human. Sort of a live and let live thing.

The room to twist, explore, and reinvent feels endless when working with vampire tropes, and I love seeing fresh, Non-Western takes on the genre.

Which Horror Trope would you love to see die, and never return from the grave?

Clowns. Full stop.

Clowns are bad. Do not even mention Pennywise. 

Thank you, Janet for stopping by—and I’m totally with you about the clowns. 

Janet Walden-West lives in the southeast with a pack of show dogs, a couple of kids, and a husband who didn't read the fine print.  She has an unseemly obsession with dusty artifacts, great cars, and bad coffee.A founding member of the East Tennessee Creative Writers Alliance and The Million Words craft blog, she is also a member of Romance Writers of America member. She pens Urban Fantasy that escapes the neat confines of the city limits in favor of map-dot hillbilly towns, and inclusive Romantic Suspense and Contemporary Romance. A #PitchWars alum, her first short story, Road Trip, is included in the Chasing the Light anthology.

Find Me At:
Website      Twitter     Instagram

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Chloe's Samhain Tarot Reading

Chloe is one of the main characters in HIS DARK MAGIC (Northern Circle Coven, book 1). She comes from a powerful family of witches and one of the ways they celebrate Samhain is by doing one card Tarot draws for each other . . . Read more on Kensington Publishing's Hobby Reads. 

Monday, October 15, 2018

Halloween Edition: Two Questions With . . . K. Bird Lincoln

For this week's Halloween edition of Two Questions With . . . I'm excited to welcome K. Bird Lincoln to my blog! 

Thank you Pat for hosting. I'm K. Bird Lincoln, an author of Historical and Urban Fantasy who may or may not be too obsessed with Japan, chocolate, and coffee. 

1. What is your favorite part of the Season? 

Fall is totally my favorite season. You get the Autumnal Equinox: equal amounts of day and night. It's a time of potential. Things could go either way, right? I live on the Minnesota Prairie and so a sense of urgency is in the air as we anticipate the freezing winds and crushing snow of winter. I could go on and on in a philosophical vein, but what I really like the best about Fall is the sweaters.

I work from home for a testing company, and there's nothing like "going to work" by curling up in my computer chair with a comfy sweater, a latte from my stove top Bailetti Mukka Express, a pumpkin chocolate chip muffin. There's just something about sweaters that make the day better. A built-in hug. Coziness without being a slob. Everyone wins.

2. Monsters: Do you prefer: External--something that we have to overcome, something that isn't "Us" (Giant Sharks, alien invasion, Rabid Trees, etc.) or Internal--something that shows us that "We" could be monsters (Carrie, Psycho, Vampires, etc)?

Internal for the win! Rabid Trees certainly would scare the stuffing out of me, but the evil that most fascinates me is the Hannibal Lector/Jekyll & Hyde/Dark Phoenix kind of monster. Monsters like Vampires and Aliens are scary, but not insidious. They don't creep into our psyche and lodge there, stubbornly seductive and morally ambiguous.

It's the ones who could be good, and yet choose evil, who fascinate me the most. Protagonists who walk the fine line between wanting to "fix things" and using their powers in evil ways in order to "fix things" are my catnip. Koi, the heroine of Dream Eater, has this emotional arc regarding her dream eating powers. Will her hunger for dreams overcome her innate decency? Will she become a monster before she can stop herself from killing? The best moral quandaries are ones where the character could go either way!


K. Bird Lincoln is an ESL professional and writer living on the windswept Minnesota Prairie with family and a huge addiction to frou-frou coffee. Also dark chocolate--without which the world is a howling void. Originally from Cleveland, she has spent more years living on the edges of the Pacific Ocean than in the Midwest. Her speculative short stories are published in various online and paper publications such as Strange Horizons. Her medieval Japanese fantasy series, Tiger Lily, is available from Amazon. In 2017 World Weaver Press released Dream Easter, the first novel in  an exciting, multi-cultural Urban Fantasy trilogy set in Portland and Japan. It happens to be on sale for 99 cents the month of October to celebrate the release of the sequel, Black Pearl Dreaming.

She also writes tasty speculative fiction reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. Check her out on Facebook, join her newsletter for chocolate and free stories, or stalk her online at


Koi Pierce dreams other people's dreams.

Her whole life she's avoided other people. Any skin-to-skin contact--a hug from her sister, the hand of a barista at Stumptown coffee--transfers flashes of that person's most intense dreams. It's enough to make anyone a hermit.

But Koi's getting her act together. No matter what, this time she's going to finish her degree at Portland Community College and get a real life. Of course it's not going to be that easy. Her father, increasingly disturbed from Alzheimer's disease, a dream fragment of a dead girl from the casual brush of a creepy professor's hand, and a mysterious stranger who speaks the same rare Northern Japanese dialect as Koi's father will force Koi to learn to trust in the help of others, as well as face the truth about her herself.

"Lincoln successfully mixes Japanese, Native American, and Middle Eastern mythologies in her modern setting, and Koi's wry voice gives a new perspective on the problems of paranormal gifts."
--Publishers Weekly

"DREAM EASTER brings much-needed freshness to the urban fantasy genre with its inspired use of Japanese culture and mythology and its fully-realized setting of Portland, Oregon. I'm eager to follow Koi on more adventures!"
--Beth Cato, author of The Clockwork Dagger and Breath of Earth

Find it Online:

Barnes and Noble
Independent Bookstores
iTunes/Apple iBooks

Monday, October 8, 2018

Halloween Edition: Two Questions with . . . Ken Schrader

I’m kicking off this week with a fantastic guest author. Welcome, Ken Schrader.  

Thank you, Pat, for letting me practice my darkest arts *Kaff, Kaff* Post...yes, Guest post on your blog today as part of our “Two questions with... ” The Halloween Edition
For those of you that don’t know, my name is Ken Schrader. I write Science Fiction, Fantasy, Weird Westerns (though, not necessarily in that order). 

So you’re here for answers, and answers you shall have.

Come, pull up a chair. Don’t mind the shadows. The Moon is full, and the wind is in the trees...

Let us talk of monsters...

Question #1. How do you define Horror?

That is a tough one. Certainly there can be horrific elements in any story, but I don’t think that makes it a “Horror” story. 

I think that for a story to fall into the Horror category there has to be a very real chance that any character in the story could die. This includes the Protagonist.

There is no such thing as a safe place in a horror story. Even staying put will bring the danger to you eventually. Often, by then, it’s far too late.

Question #2. Do you have a scary anecdote you could share? 

I woke up one night - I can't remember exactly what for - and, unbeknownst to me, one of my dogs followed (Maybe I left the bedroom door open).

I don't know where he went, but we separated. As I'm making my way back to the bedroom, half asleep, in the dark, I hear a low growl in front of me.

The breeze must not have been going in the right direction, or something, but he didn't recognize me until I said his name. And he meant business.

Let me tell you something:

Nothing, and I mean nothing, speaks to the part of your brain that used to huddle around the fire and pray for the dawn like the sound of an apex predator in the dark.


I am a science fiction and fantasy writer, a shameless Geek, a fan of the Oxford comma, and I make housing decisions based upon the space available for bookshelves. I collect books, movies, and music. 
I sign out loud when I think there's no one around, and try to get a blog post up once a week -- one of which I have managed to do consistently for the past few years.

I love music of all kinds, books, and the big sky off my front porch, Stars Wars, Firefly, Blind Guardian (to which, I write almost exclusively), Rugby, star gazing, jasmine tea, and the smell of rain on the air. 

My favorite flavor of ice cream is chocolate. My favorite food is a grilled steak, and I can suspend disbelief embarrassingly quickly. 

I live in Michigan, am co-owned by several dogs (especially the Border Collie), and I am one of the rare breed of folk that enjoys mowing the lawn. My short story "Haven" appears in the "Weird Wild West" anthology. My short story "The Price of Power" appears in the "Trials" anthology. My short story "The Intern" appears in the "Chasing the Light" anthology. 

I am represented by Dorian Maffei 

Monday, October 1, 2018

Two Questions With . . . Halloween Edition~ Anne Raven

I’m thrilled to start off this Halloween edition of Two Questions With . . . super special guest author, Anne Raven.  

Thank you, Pat, for hosting me on your blog today as we start our “Two questions with... Halloween Edition” blog tour series. I’m Anne Raven, and I write romance, anything from suspense to paranormal.

*sets broom and pointy hat down beside the table*

Now to kick off our bewitching questions...

Q: How do you define Horror?
A quick internet search will bring up definitions like, “painful and intense fear, dread, or dismay”, “aversion or repugnance”, and “an overwhelming and painful feeling caused by something frightfully shocking, terrifying, or revolting”.

I confess, I’ve never been a horror fan. Mostly because I define horror as something that’s often excessively filled with lots of gore—think the Sawmovies. I know it’s a huge industry, probably one of the biggest even, but I’ve never understood the willingness to read/watch something purposely designed to repulse you. I’m assuming it has something to do with an adrenaline rush, but sadly, it’s not my thing. Also, I have a highly active imagination, so I tend to be more fearful of what my own brain will conjure up post-horror movie. And I daren’t ever try to read a horror book because I’d likely never sleep again—thank you, imagination.

That said, I love dark and twisty things, and I have enjoyed a few horror movies over the years, but they’re generally more of a psychological horror which I’d probably class as more of a thriller… which leads to question number 2…

Q: Is there any difference between Horror and Thriller? If so, what is it?
I truly believe there is a major difference between Horror and Thriller. I dislike Horror, but I LOVE Thriller!

Again, a quick internet search provides definitions like, “a high degree of intrigue, adventure, or suspense”, “an exciting and frightening story”, and “surprise, anticipation and anxiety”.

So, while Horror is designed to repulse, Thrillers are meant to, well, thrill. They’re exciting and make you think. They take you on a suspenseful journey through twists and turns, and if done well, they’ll surprise you with something at the end. Sure, there are overlaps, but I think in general there can be a clear distinction between the two genres.

Anne Raven was born and raised along the windy coast of South Africa, and can assure everyone there are no lions roaming the streets—unless you count the feral cat next door. When not reading or writing, you’ll find her being bossed around by her adorable niece, taking freshly baked goods from the oven, or drinking too much coffee. Her romantic suspense IN THE NAME OF THE MOTHER was showcased in Pitch Wars 2017. Anne is represented by Amanda Jain at BookEnds Literary Agency.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Two Questions With . . . Upcoming Halloween Edition!

It's almost October, which means many creative minds are starting to turn toward the spooky, fanged, clawed, and winged. 

To celebrate, a small coven of writers has emerged from the darkness to share their harrowing delights with you. Each week, starting October 1st, we will tour each other's blogs and answer questions about our favorite spooky shenanigans. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

For Book Quote Wednesday. Today's word is FAST. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

HIS DARK MAGIC Cover reveal!

Today I'm super excited to share the cover for 
HIS DARK MAGIC (Northern Circle Coven book 1)

Check it out

#Witches #CoverReveal #LyricalPress #Merlin

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

This time next week Lyrical Press is hosting a cover reveal for 
HIS DARK MAGIC on Kensington Publishing's Hobby Reads.
 I can't wait until you all get to see this awesome cover!