Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Taking the ‘Can She Write A Series?’ Challenge @vscotttheauthor

By Veronica Scott

My progression as a writer has moved over time from writing and illustrating my own ‘novel’ at the age of seven (princesses, flying cats, flying horses and a riverboat captain hero) to several connected series of scifi novels in junior high and high school that were heavily influenced by Tom Corbett Space Cadet and ‘Star Trek,” with elements of Trixie Belden thrown in. (Those novels are never seeing the light of day, folks.)  My first two published books were standalone and released in 2012. One from Carina Press and the other self published.

I haven’t looked back since but became a full time author in 2015 and now have somewhere around 20 books out (it varies as anthologies go on and off sale etc.).

Late in 2017 I decided the time had come for me to tackle an actual series, with an overarching plot arc that would run through the five volumes. Ta da!

I never used to think I could write such a series, being an as-I-go plotter (also known as a seat of the pants writer) and wasn’t much tempted to try it. The ‘series’ I wrote as a teenager were done as standalone books and then I’d get a new idea and write the next one with the same characters. There was no single plot direction driving the arc, just adventure and romance. I wasn’t trying to get to any specific end point.

As a published author, I like writing standalone stories set in one universe, be it ancient Egypt or my interstellar civilization, the Sectors. Sometimes I even do a sequel or have the same characters make an appearance in more than one book (usually as secondary characters since they’ve already had their own story told). So, I still do connected series with no problem and I do have a long term arc for the Sectors in my head, but don’t require each book to move the action forward.

When I was thinking about what concepts I might use to write a series that would hold my own interest as an author and hopefully be enjoyed by the readers, I realized this might be my chance to tackle a trope I’ve always loved – the genetically engineered super soldiers. I never got enough of Lora Leigh’s Breeds or Laurann Dohner’s New Species and the advice to write what you want to read seemed to me to apply here.

So I came up with the Badari, tough warriors created by the alien enemies of the humans in my Sectors. I added to that mix a colony of humans kidnapped in their sleep by the aliens in charge of all this questionable science and brought to the planet where the Badari are held, to serve as subjects in more experiments. The questions in the big arc are how do the Badari gain their freedom, how do the humans ever get home to tell the Sectors about this new threat…and of course how does the romance occur in the midst of all this? 

The first volume, Aydarr, came out in December and the second book, Mateer, just recently released. Now I’m working on the third story, with probably two more to go to wrap everything up. I also have lots of plot ideas in my head for more stories about the Badari, if readers like them, but those would be in my standalone writing style, since the big arc will be wrapped up. “Sidequels”!

It’s going fine so far, I’d say. I did enough outlining to know what the major plot point to be achieved was for each novel, but not so much detailed planning that my Muse would balk at writing the book. (As I’ve mentioned before, if I plot too much before I write, I lose all interest in doing the actual writing. The creative spark flees – the story is told.)

It’s too soon to say if I’d write another actual series. I really do like the standalone experience of writing and it suits my tendency not to outline or plan ahead in detail, but I’m enjoying this challenge so far. I think my biggest hurdle is that I feel I owe it to the readers to get each book in the series out within 4-6 weeks of the previous book and so I have to write the Badari novels back to back, not stray off and play with some other shiny plot in between. But sometimes life happens, as they say, like moving to a new apartment in late December, and the writing schedule goes out the window.

And I do love my covers!

The blurb for Mateer:  Megan Garrison, a doctor at the Sectors Amarcae 7 colony, goes to sleep one night as usual only to wake up in her nightgown, strapped to a table in an alien lab, destined to be the subject of terrifying experiments. Granted a brief reprieve, Megan and the other kidnapped humans are released in the middle of a forestlike enclosure on this unknown world and told to survive as best they can for now.

Her only hope is Mateer, the genetically engineered alien warrior imprisoned with the humans. He knows more than he’s sharing about this planet, their captors and the fate of other humans, including perhaps her own sisters. Turns out everyone from her colony has been kidnapped by the Khagrish, a ruthless race of alien scientists. Working for enemies of the human-led Sectors, the Khagrish have created the Badari to be super soldiers.

Mateer, a tough Badari enforcer, now a rebel, is captured while infiltrating the lab to help his pack bring it down. He’s also been ordered by his leaders to search for Megan and save her life at all costs. Tortured by the enemy, he’s offered one chance at survival – convince Megan to become his mate and assist the Khagrish with further experiments.

As the situation at the lab grows worse, Megan struggles against her deep attraction to Mateer, while she does her best to shield the other humans from the terrible Khagrish experiments. For his part, Mateer knows she really is his fated mate and despairs of being able to keep her safe, as the rebel attack is delayed and she fights the truth of their bond.

Will they be able to work together to defeat Khagrish plans and preserve human lives until the promised rescue happens? And what of their future together – will Megan accept Mateer as her true mate, or walk away if she’s freed?

Buy LinksAmazon     iBooks      B&N    Kobo  Google coming soon!

Author Bio and Links:
 USA Today Best Selling Author
“SciFi Encounters” columnist for the USA Today Happy Ever After blog
Veronica Scott grew up in a house with a library as its heart. Dad loved science fiction, Mom loved ancient history and Veronica thought there needed to be more romance in everything. When she ran out of books to read, she started writing her own stories.

Seven time winner of the SFR Galaxy Award, as well as a National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, Veronica is also the proud recipient of a NASA Exceptional Service Medal relating to her former day job, not her romances!
She read the part of Star Trek Crew Member in the audiobook production of Harlan Ellison’s “The City On the Edge of Forever.”

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Earth's Many Ways to Die: Natural Disasters in Fiction by @Liza0Connor

by Liza O' Connor

There is a remarkable quantity of ways that earth can be destroyed. These are the ways that I can recall off the top of my head. I am certain there are more. Feel free to write them in the comment box.

Earthquakes. We’ve always had them. Some charts say we have more than we used to, some say the opposite. But without question the planet Earth likes to shake it’s booty.

SuperVolcanoes- some say there are over 20 and some say 5. The one in USA could blow anytime....Those in the blow range will be obliterated. Ash content will turn the skies black and cover most of USA and Canada. Acid rain will poison our water supply, kill most of the fish, and make us sick. Death of all vegetation in large portions of USA & Canada will result in starvation.

Climate Changes will result in more frequent and powerful: Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Fires, Famines, Floods, Surges, Landslides, Avalanches, Destructive winds.

Ocean warming could cause Methane to rise from the ocean floor and kill all oxygen breathing creatures. Loss of ocean currents as the iceburgs melt diluting the salt that creates the currents.

Rising sea levels-Loss of viable water.

Wind storms-Loss of viable soil.

Solar flares from the Sun damage to all electronics, devastates our electricity dependent economy.

Radiation poison due to the loss of the electro-magnetic shield and the stripping of our atmosphere.

Asteroids slamming into earth.

Collison with a rogue comet from outer space.

Magnetic pole flipping: Unable to navigate waters by electronic devices, Unable to fly planes dependent upon electrical devices, Prolonged loss of Electromagnetic shield protection.

Loss of Atmosphere.

Nuclear War.

And they all end in the same way: You get a frozen, non-viable planet for millions of years.

So far, there have been FIVE mass extinctions on earth.

The worst one, 250 million years ago, had 96 percent of marine species and 70 percent of land species die off. It took millions of years to recover.

Many scientists predict that we're on track for a sixth mass extinction and given the very many ways we can get there, I felt the need to send a fabulous group of brilliant children and scholars, plus soldiers to Titan in my book: Destination Titan.


With Earth destined for a new ice-age, seven scientists and twenty-two brilliant teenagers are gathered in a compound deep within a mountain. There they struggle to come together as a group and complete the projects needed for their survival in the inhospitable environment of Titan, one of Saturn’s moons. However, certain factions on Earth have no intention of letting Project Einstein succeed. Keeping the group alive and productive is the hardest task Colonel Lancaster and his soldiers have ever had, but they are determined to succeed no matter how well the saboteurs have planned. The continuation of the human race depends upon it.


About the Author

Liza O’Connor lives in Denville, NJ with her dog Jess. They hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, she learned to fly small Cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. She’s an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels.

Check out all my books on Amazon

Be sure to click FOLLOW  on my Amazon page so I can alert you to new books.

which I've dedicated to Sci Fi books

Wander over to my Personal Facebook Page

where I talk and share about books, politics, and other silliness.

Twitter is a great place to find me: @Liza0Connor 

(That's @Liza, the number 0, then Connor)

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

When My Favorite Genre Meets My New Favorite Trope by @imMirandaMartin

When my favorite genre meets my new favorite trope
SFR + RH = Night of the Reverse Harem
by Miranda Martin

Have you ever read a book that just opened you up to a whole new trope and it became all you wanted to read, eat, sleep and breathe? That just happened to me recently with reverse harem paranormal romances. It started with Jaymin Eve’s Curse of the Gods series and I swear I’ve been reading them non-stop since then.

I loved them so much I thought about writing one and made a post to my facebook and newsletter followers asking if they’d be interested in reading one from me. The response was overwhelming! I even had my bestie author friend Lee Savino contact me and tell me she’s been wanting to write RH too. She asked if I’d be interested in a co-branded release effort and thus Night of the Reverse Harem was born.

It grew a little from there and now there are eight authors participating, Lee Savino, Golden Angel, Aubrey Cara, Renee Rose & Rebel West, Ava Sinclair, Lili Zander and myself. We're all taking our specific alien/shifters and writing standalone reverse harem stories in our worlds.

It’s been great fun writing mine. I dreamed up four hot alpha males, each with their own personalities and figured out how I could work into my established series a girl who gets all four of them.


I asked my friends why they love SFR and what they’re bringing to the genre with these RH novels and here’s what they had to say:

Lee Savino: I write SFR because I can address themes like love, war, redemption, class struggle in an alternate context. Oh and big aliens with giant *equipment* are hot AF. According to one theory of anthropology, the first human communities were polyamorous, centering around one woman who was supported and provided for by a whole community. Also, writing about multiple guys wanting to give you orgasms is hot.

Aubrey Cara: I can go on and on about this!! There’s so many possibilities open in SFR!

Short answer, I write SFR because it combines my two favorite things, science fiction and romance. Aliens, check. Space travel and advanced science technology, check. Humans and aliens thrown together in unusual circumstances and finding love, double check!

What do I bring? Hopefully a fresh look at old themes. Lots of upgraded genitalia, lots of interspecies loving, and worlds that a reader can lose themselves in. And that’s my short, simple answer.

Renee Rose: One thing I love about SFR is that I can go more non-con in a made up world. I love dominant alpha males and the subjugated female who ends up stealing their hearts and bringing them to their knees. :)

The RH theme offers so many possibilities for relationship complications, entanglements, domination and pleasure. I love the idea of so much focus being on the female and how she ends up thriving with the dominance, love and care of so many males.

Ava Sinclair: I write SFR for the World building. I love the unfettered creativity, and how the environment shapes the story. What I want to bring to the genre with a RH story is characterization. The external influences of the Drakoryan world combined with the interplay of one woman and her multiple mates makes for conflict and growth potential.

Lili Zander: I write SFR because I love world-building and creating new civilizations, including civilizations that are set up perfectly for reverse harems!

Golden Angel: I love writing in a world of limitless possibilities, where anything I can imagine and justify is something I can include. I can change body parts, mess around with customs, create entirely new cultures, and still find all the ways to relate it back to humanity. Sure the hero might be an alien with some crazy fun genitalia or some other significant physical or cultural difference, but deep down he just wants love too!

I think the RH theme works particularly well with Sci-Fi and Fantasy because we can make the culture anything we want. What is taboo to human society can be completely normal in an alien one, and of course there's the inevitable culture clash and eventually acceptance. Because who doesn't want multiple hot men worshiping them and seeing to their every need?


The first book to release will be on Valentine’s Day! Night of the Dragons: A Reverse Harem Romance (Red Planet Dragons of Tajss)

Broken pod, wrecked ship, no water in sight. But Piper Sage is a survivor. 

Diagnosed with an aggressive terminal cancer, the doctors on board her generational spaceship had no choice but to put her in stasis, hoping to keep her alive until a cure could be found. When she wakes, it's not to a miracle but a nightmare. Two blazing suns, nothing but sand and more sand.

There's no way she's going to just give up and die. Not a chance. 

But long unused muscles and pale skin are making it impossible on this treacherous red planet.

Salvation comes in the form of four powerful dragon-men. Enormous, seven-foot walls of muscle with wings and tails and scales, these four have decided to be Piper's protectors. 

The only trouble is they don't want to share. 

Kaidan, Ejder, Anguis and Mikhos are all possessively alpha and will do anything to be the one who gets to claim Piper as his treasure. She's got other ideas.

After all, why choose one when you can have them all?

Night of the Dragons is a fully standalone novel. This is a TRUE reverse harem romance, NOT a love triangle. Expect steam, adventure, smoking hot alien-dragons and a feisty red-headed heroine.

Night of the Shayde by Lili Zander: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0793BRTG9

Night of the Berserkers by Lee Savino:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0792LPV7V

Night of the Wild Stags by Golden Angel:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0793GXW1J/

Night of the Zandians by Renee Rose & Rebel West

Night of the Monrok by Aubrey Cara

Night of the Drakoryans by Ava Sinclair

About Miranda Martin

Country girl, military vet, artistic soul and lover of all things science fiction. Now writes bestselling scifi romance. Lives in Kansas City with her husband and children.

Stalk me in all the places!

Sign up to chat with me via e-mail to get all the newest SFR and UF releases, sales, great giveaways and a FREE sci-fi romance, Alien Prince → http://newsletter.mirandamartinromance.com/
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(All views expressed are those of Miranda Martin and don't necessarily reflect those of the SFRB)

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

It's SFR Galaxy Awards Day!

The 2017 SFR Galaxy Awards recipients will be announced today in seven rounds, beginning with a welcome message at 8:00 AM EST (USA), and featuring an award round every hour beginning at 10:00 AM EST.

Tomorrow marks the sixth year these awards have been presented, and includes a special tribute to late SF/F author Ursula K. Le Guin who passed on January 22, 2018. Her words were the inspiration for these unique awards.

As the posts are made, the links to each individual round will be added below. The schedule is as follows:

2017 SFR Galaxy Awards Welcome Message

Round 1 - 10:00 AM Eastern Standard Time - Chris Stock

Round 2 - 11:00 AM Eastern Standard Time - Heather Massey

Round 3 - 12:00 PM Eastern Standard Time - Marlene Harris

Round 4 -  1:00 PM Eastern Standard Time - Riley Moreland

Round 5 -  2:00 PM Eastern Standard Time - Jo Jones

Round 6 -  3:00 PM Eastern Standard Time - Lee Koven

Round 7 -  4:00 PM Eastern Standard Time - Anna McLain

You can help celebrate the awards by commenting on the awards rounds, and sharing the announcement links and information on social media.

SFR Brigade Bases of Operation