June 18, 2014

Kiss of the Succubus by Andrew P. Weston #Giveaway #GuestPost

Having survived the double-cross planned by Samael, the demon king, and Fanon, his own spawn-father, Augustus Thorne is trying to come to terms with his lot in life. Both Fanon and Agamemnon, the king’s assassin, lay dead. And good riddance! But the only woman Augustus has ever loved in his long and lonely life is gone–driven away by the very real dangers his lifestyle brings. However, Augustus doesn’t have the luxury of dwelling on what might have been. An insidious new threat has emerged, one that exposes humanity to a danger, the likes of which they have never faced before. Surprisingly, Augustus discovers he doesn’t have to face this threat alone. Quite by chance, he stumbles upon a mysterious woman. Someone who appears to be the only other Cambion he has ever met. Has he found a true soul mate at last? Or is she too good to be true? Are other players involved who would still like to see Augustus Thorne dead? If so, what’s the connection? Find out for yourselves as the story continues in: The Cambion Journals – Kiss of the Succubus. 

Genre: Paranormal Fantasy
Length: 285 Pages
Release Date: June 15, 2014
Published by: Pagan Writers Press

} The Book Excerpt }

A background thum-thum, thum-thum, thum-thum, pervaded the tranquil serenity of her thoughts. A muffled throb that somehow coaxed her along the current of sublime melodic reverie that was her entire world.

Everything was as it should be. She was safely cocooned within a web-like tracery of scarlet and rose warmth, and her senses were soothed by the rhythm to the point of rapture.

She had changed. Of that there was no doubt. The disconcerting other within her heart was making its presence felt. And yet, the metamorphosis it had generated caused no discomfort. No anxiety intruded upon her perfect existence.

Thum-thum, thum-thum, thum-thum.

Something encroached at the very limit of discernment—static noise, a sharpening of mental focus. Awareness impinged, and her head swarmed to the echo of a thousand whispers on the edge of perception as she blinked her eyes open.

At first, her sight refused to cooperate, and it took a moment before the liquid silver of her vision cleared. Lucidity, the likes of which she had never before witnessed in thousands of years of existence, struck her with a hammer blow.

A darkened chamber illuminated only by a handful of Bale-Lights greeted her. Plain walls welcomed her return to coherent thought, their clinical frigidity a stark contrast to the bank of high-tech medical equipment surrounding the single bed upon which she lay.

That unfamiliar sound intruded again. Thum-thum, thum-thum, thum-thum.

What the . . . ?

“Are you all right?” a disembodied voice asked.

“I . . . I think so. . . .” Her thoughts turned inward, scrutinizing the presence within her.

“Are you in pain?”

“No, not at all. It was just . . . different than what I expected . . . than what I’m used to.” Turning, she recognized the source of the questioner. “Lamia?”

“Welcome back, Mahlat-essa. How have the last three and a half months been?”

Mahlat-essa felt her breast and the newfangled steady rhythm that beat incessantly within her. “I feel . . . different.

“That’s the effect of the Bloodstone. Is it freaking you out?” Lamia placed a reassuring hand on her shoulder.

“No, it’s just . . . not what I’m used to.” She sensed that inward scrutiny again, and wondered what to call it. “What’s happened to me?”

“Your memories haven’t returned yet?” Lamia appeared concerned, her brow furrowing.

“Well, I recognized you, didn’t I?”

“I suppose we have to expect this. The Bloodstone is bound to mix things up for a little while yet.”

“So what’s it done?”

“It’s changed you at the molecular level, Mal. Altered what you are—”

“What I am?”

“We talked about this. Don’t you remember?”

A soupy mishmash of jumbled thoughts tumbled through Mahlat-essa’s mind. Slowly, they began to coalesce into a structured, recognizable form. Comprehension dawned.

“So the bloodline was puissant enough then?”

Lamia’s relief was obvious. “Yes, it certainly was. Only two lines still exist today, as you know. We were able to extract sufficient vitality from our subject to imbue the stone with enough potency to trigger the transmutation.”

“And there’ll be no lasting side effects?” She touched her chest again, with its disconcertingly loud beat.

“Not so far as we can determine. The stone contains sufficient potency to hold the change in stasis for about six months. It’s gradually leaking that essence into your heart at a steady rate. Once it’s depleted, you’ll either revert back to normal or have to undergo a fresh infusion.”

“Lamia, do we have a mirror here?” Mahlat-essa sat up, the speed of her sudden movement causing both shock and delight to course through her veins like an electric charge.

Smiling, Lamia fished one out of her handbag and handed it to her friend.

Mahlat-essa was slow to raise the vanity mirror to her face, and was stunned by the reflection staring back.

Gone was her devilishly beautiful and angular looks which had taken the breath away from the most resolute demons. She had been replaced by a vision of even greater exquisiteness. How?

“I look . . . I look . . .” She gasped.

“Perfect, eh? Just right for your goal.”

“My goal?” Mahlat-essa mumbled, momentarily confounded.

“Remember.” Lamia hugged her close, gushing, “You can’t recall much about your past, my dear. Your poor mother died when you were born, and you were left all alone in the world, wondering who and what you are. You grew up with the awful burden of knowing you were rejected by others for being different. For having a hunger you could barely control. The only relief you’ve ever felt is when these supernatural things are present. These demons! Venting your fury on them provides the only opportunity you have of appeasing the hunger inside. And you’re very, very good at dealing with demons. It’s something that comes naturally to a freak like you, yes?”

Memories began to unravel within Mahlat-essa’s mind.

“Yes, I’m starting to remember now! I’m different than other girls. Stronger than other humans, faster in some ways, nastier. Although I want to protect them, they shun me. I’m all alone without anyone to share my sad and solitary existence with.”

“Which is a shame of course, because our one woman execution squad just so happens to be incredibly highly sexed and armed with killer looks too. The perfect bait, eh?”

Raising the mirror again, Mahlat-essa grinned. That smile failed to reach the cold depths of her eyes.

Yes. The perfect bait. He won’t know what hit him!



} The Guest Post }

The Reality of Paranormal Realms?

As the author of the paranormal Cambion Journals seriesRage of Augustus & Kiss of the Succubus – I’m always interested in making my stories stand out from the crowd in a fiercely competitive market. Fans will be aware of the fact that bookshop shelves are crammed full of all sorts of tales of the weird and wonderful. Sadly, many of them don’t live up to expectation.

If you have a love of writing paranormal adventures, what factors should you include within your story to ensure readers remember who you are?

Well, I read an interesting article a few months ago regarding some essential ingredients you need to include. You might find some of them surprising.

If you manage to create a fantastic main character, DON’T make life easy for them.

It's no fun having someone who has the world at their feet. Readers want turmoil. Does your main character have enemies to defeat? Do they need to protect their families in some way? Is there a threat that everything they have could be taken away? If they have a love life, make it gritty.
(And note how this kind of approach is adopted in such noted TV serials as “The Vampire Diaries, Paranormal, Game of Thrones, True Blood, Alphas, etc.”

Have real Supporting characters

Just because they're not the hero or heroine, doesn't mean to say a member of the supporting cast can't be complex. Make them just as realistic, multifaceted, intelligent or devious as your main character. Consider making them even stronger, smarter, and deadlier! It'll add a depth to your work that will make it much more believable.

Build them a world

I've seen this before. How much effort do you expend in world building? Where does the story take place? When? How did they get to where they are now? What's the history and development behind this fictional person/place and where are they going? The more detail, the clearer the ring of fictional truth with sound through, and this is particularly important when you touch on the realms of fantasy and the paranormal.

Kill off characters

The best stories are the ones that subvert your expectations.
When I read Game of Thrones, I was itching for Ned Stark to expose the snotty little *#%8 (Joffrey) for what he was and depose of the Lannisters. Ouch! Was I wrong! I won't say any more, as the TV series is nowhere near as developed as the books and I don't want to spoil the surprises. But seriously - wow! 


I learned from this and applied it into my Cambion Journals series. If you can make your reader spit with indignation and fury, you've won. You've pulled them into your fictional world and made them care for your character. So make them tear their hair out by destroying their expectations/ Mwaa ha ha ha haaaa!

Sex

Now, don’t smile and say, “Ooh, yes please!”
If you're going to include sex, make sure the intensity, heat rating, and frequency match the actual plot line perfectly. For goodness sake, don't just chuck it in there to pad out the story. Our readers aren't idiots. They will immediately spot something that doesn't fit. So ensure it does.

I was very fortunate with my Cambion Journals series, in that it involves Incubi, Succubae, and of course, Cambions. They feed on life energy, especially those forces generated by high states of emotion. And what situations generate the most intense feelings? Yes, terror and sex.
Never forget, a good sex scene can really make or break the story's credibility. So don’t screw it up. (Pun intended).

Don’t be afraid to get high.

The paranormal realm allows us a chance to play. A good dream sequence, dream-quest, or ethereally induced high, etc, can allow you to take your character where they wouldn't otherwise be able to go. It can add depth/history to the character themselves, or the plot, and allow you to include essential history that would otherwise be missed. Don't be afraid to add surrealism.

Have an endgame

This is why I spend so much time planning a project before I actually start writing. Don't get me wrong, I'm not rigid. I allow things to flow as I'm writing, because very often, great ideas and twists come to me as I'm going along. (And that happened so many times as I evolved the Cambion Journals storyline). 

But, I know how my journey will begin. I know the ports I have to call in at on the way home, and I know how it's going to conclude. Having an endgame in mind from the beginning can allow all sorts of machinations and subplots to simmer away as you go along. Then, at the grand revelation, when you pull all the threads together...pow! What an impact.

***
What do you think? I thought some of the ideas were rather intriguing, especially when it came to making our characters happy. Life isn't always like that, and evidently, our public wants to see that reflected in the stories they read.

I’ve been canny enough to apply these pointers to Augustus Thorne, my main character from the Cambion Journals. Just look how I tried to encapsulate these factors in my introduction to him:

(This is the opening scene from Rage of Augustus)

“I waited in the shadows. I was very, very good at that. I had to be considering the prey I was hunting. He was old, he was powerful and his appetites gave him strength way beyond any other foe I’d ever had to face.

It had taken me decades to get close to him and months to track him to North America, because up until now, he was nomadic. The world was his garden—or his dining room, dependent on your view—and he’d always been cautious and restrained in his choice of delicacies. But at last he’d slipped up!

I’d been scouting the internet and scanning coroner’s reports as usual when I noticed a pattern developing here in Los Angeles. Over a period of only six weeks, five apparently healthy young women had simply wasted away and died. Three were married, one was in a steady same-sex relationship, and the other was single. Further digging had revealed all were extremely popular, active and good-looking.

As you know, Los Angeles is a big city. Just scratching the surface a little will reveal all sorts of sordid goings-on and shady dealings that would make your hair curl. So why would these particular deaths stand out?

I specialize in a very particular method of death. When usually vigorous, energetic people simply fade away and die for no reason, it gets my attention. That by itself would have been enough to warrant a visit. But what kept my interest in these cases were the descriptions of the young women involved.

All ranged from their early twenties to mid-thirties and every single one of them was blonde and extremely attractive. And that was what made me get on a plane and travel thousands of miles across the Atlantic within hours of reading the reports, because only one scum-bag I knew of ever restricted his victims to such a narrow profile. Fanon!

As I mentioned, he was getting old now, and they were just his type. For him to select so many similar victims in such a confined area and in such a short period of time was either a huge mistake or it indicated an arrogance that surprised me. I didn’t really care which; I’d wanted to take him for over two hundred years. And can you blame me?

It was because of him I existed. It was because of him I was a monster, a menace to society, cursed with a hunger I could barely control.

Yes, I am what I am because of my accursed father.

I didn’t care how long I had to wait. Soon he’d arrive, and when he did, I’d make sure he paid in full for what he’d done to my mother.”

***

Do you see? Applying the above factors really does add a bit of oomph that will draw your reader into wanting to discover more.

So, what points are you going to ensure make it into your next novel?

Until then...

Keep it real!

Andrew

~About Andrew P. Weston~



Andrew P Weston is a military and police veteran from the UK who now lives on the beautiful Greek island of Kos with his wife, Annette, and their growing family of rescue cats.

A criminal law and astronomy graduate, he is a contracted writer of both fiction and poetry for several publishing houses and a growing number of well established magazines. In his spare time, Andrew assists NASA with one of their research projects, and amazingly, still finds the time to submit regular educational articles for Amazing Stories and Astronaut.com.

When not writing, Andrew enjoys holding his breath, being told what to do by his wife, and drinking Earl Grey Tea whilst dressed as Captain Jean Luc Picard.

Make it so…


~The Awesome Giveaway~



Paranormal Realms: // 7:04 AM
Category:

0 comments:

Post a Comment