1-What inspired you to become an author?
My imagination and passion for storytelling were my inspiration. I loved to tell stories as a kid and the older I got, the more stories I told.
I decided to write romance stories because I’m a romantic at heart and enjoy writing and reading about tortured souls who find themselves and their soul mates and calling in life.
2-How did you come up with the title for your latest series?
The title Mates of Nethermore came to me when I wanted to write an erotic romance fantasy series about the nether creatures in folklore. I mashed all these beings together and came up with some pretty malevolent villains.
As for the heroes of the series, well they are paranormals or humans who get caught in the antagonists’ evil plots. Not only do they have to fight to survive, but also to find true and lasting love in the new harsh and cold dystopian world that has evolved.
3-Do you title the book first or wait until after it’s complete?
I make up a title for a series before I even write the overall outline of the storyline.
But as for individual story titles, no, I always choose a title once the outline or the story is completely written.
4-What books are in your to read pile?
My Kobo Aura is stacked! I think I have almost a hundred books I haven’t yet read. Most of them are the first books in paranormal romantic suspense series, which I got free at Kobo. I love taking chances on new authors I’ve never read before. I’ve uncovered so many good books and writers this way. For instance I’ve recently discovered the talented Bella Andre and Stephanie Rowe’s this way. I read the first book in a series they offered on Kobo, got hooked, and then bought the rest of the books in the series after that. Now I’m a huge fan of all their work. J
5-What is your current “work in progress” or upcoming projects?
I’m writing the seventh book in the Shifters of the Claiming Kind series. There is a new character I’m introducing to the series who is a big surprise for the readers and for the Brooks brothers.
Once I’m done with this story, I’ll either write the next book in Mates of Nethermore or Harbor of Lost Souls. It depends on which premise that I have in mind solidifies first.
6-Who designed the cover of your latest book?
The extremely talented and wonderful cover artist Harris Channing has created all my covers. She is the best! She always reflects what I want and how my heroes look in her creations. Actually, her covers are even better than what I imagined they would look like. J
7-Do you have a song or playlist (book soundtrack) that you think represents this book?
No, there isn’t a song or playlist that I can say represents this story. But you know what. Please don’t laugh when you read this. You’ll probably think I’m super weird, which I am. J But I started listening to soundtracks of storms while I write. That’s what I was listening to part of the time when I wrote To Mate a Wolf and all the stories since then.
It’s so invigorating, so powerful. It actually stimulates my ears and in turn my brain to be more productive and creative. J
I always used to love sitting on my covered balcony during thunderstorms when I was a kid. Listening to the thunder and watching the lightning strike the sky always gave me goose bumps. I never really outgrew that interest. It always made me feel so alive to see how powerful Mother Nature can be.
8- Do you have any advice for other writers?
It’ll take you some time before you find your true voice. And you may change it a few or many times as you evolve as a writer and as a person, but once you find the true author you, go for it with your whole heart and soul. Write and keep writing from the heart. It’s the best feeling ever!
To Mate a Wolf
Shifters of the Claiming Kind
Genre: Erotic Alternative Paranormal Cowboy, M/M, shape-shifters
Publisher: Siren Publishing
Date of Publication: October 2014
Number of pages: 93
Word Count: 21,486
Cover Artist: Harris Channing
Evan Michaels has just become the mob’s number one target. They want him dead before he can tell the police what he knows. When the Brooks brothers, five kind and brave wolf shifters, offer their aid and protection on their cattle ranch, Evan jumps at the offer.
Chandler Brooks opened his home to Evan Michaels, a cute half-lynx who was in dire need of his and his brothers’ protection. But he never imagined he’d open his heart, too. All this time he thought an eternal mate didn’t exist, until Evan came into his life. He tries to win the frightened and cocooned half-lynx’s heart and make him his life mate. But a past lover returns, determined to ruin any chance Chandler has at love and happiness.
Can Chandler make Evan trust him and open his eyes to the everlasting love that exists between them, while protecting him from a hidden and deadly danger lurking nearby that’s ready to strike?
When they got to the range, Chandler removed his hat and rested it on a wooden post, then waltzed up to a magnificent black horse. Patting its black mane, he said, “This here is Wanda. She is a thoroughbred. I bought her from our neighbor Sal Winfred. He owns several racehorses. She’s too old to race competitively anymore, but she’s perfect for us.”
He turned to get the burgundy leather saddle resting in the corner of the stall and hauled it over her, securing the straps on both sides.
Jumpy and fearful, Evan stammered, “D–do you have a super slow pony I can ride instead?”
Chandler laughed, his pearly white teeth sparkled in the beaming afternoon sunlight. “Wanda is the slowest and tamest we have, I’m afraid.”
Evan’s armpits began to perspire with his apprehension, and he really regretted wearing this light blue T-shirt which turned dark blue when it got wet. Soon he’d be a sweating slob. And if he lost his grip on Wanda and landed on his ass or his face in front of his dreamboat hunk, well, there went any chance of making a good impression.
“All right. I–I guess I have no choice but to ride her,” he stuttered.
“I’ll be riding with you, if that reassures you.” He gave him a slanted, flirty smirk.
Panic and excitement twirled around Evan like a tornado, making him anxious and super uneasy. He hoped he didn’t forget to put on deodorant after coming out of the shower, because with all the sweating he was doing, he’d start smelling like the horse they’d be riding pretty soon.
“Unless you prefer to go solo…” Chandler tilted his head to the right.
Evan shook his head. “No, believe me, the last thing I want to do is ride Wanda solo. I’m scared I’ll hurt her or she won’t like me and hurl me off.”
Chandler held out the stirrup, grinning. “No, she would never do that to you. She likes you a lot. You’re a super likable guy, you know.”
Evan blushed as he put his foot into the stirrup and hoisted himself onto Wanda. Her wide girth had his tense inner leg muscles stretching.
Once he was settled, he absorbed Chandler’s words. You’re a super likable guy. Was that a good thing or a bad? Was he likable as in he could be a good friend? Or was he likable as in a boyfriend-boyfriend relationship? He hoped Chandler meant the latter.
After Chandler positioned himself behind him on the horse, he wrapped his arms around Evan to reach for the reins. Evan lost his breath when Chandler’s nose tickled the back of his neck through his stretching movements. His heart raced fast. He could feel its pulse in his throat.
“Sorry about that,” Chandler apologized.
“It’s okay.” Evan squeaked and coughed, trying to clear the nervousness from his throat.
Chandler’s cologne smelled sweet, alluring, and very familiar. Was it Drakkar Noir he wore? Before he could ask him if it was, Chandler squeezed Wanda’s sides, and she began to gallop slowly.
“You okay?” Chandler’s warm breath caressed and tickled Evan’s ear and cheek.
“Yeah,” he mumbled, trying to get a grip on his raging hormones and stop his churning stomach.
Wanda continued to gallop at a steady pace. Soon Evan’s drumming heartbeat settled to its natural pace as his fear began to subside. He stared out at the vast grasslands. It was breathtaking. He’d only witnessed this type of view in movies or still life photos, but never in real life.
As if reading his mind, Chandler said, “It’s thirty acres. My parents started this ranch some thirty-one years ago. They had just moved to Oklahoma when someone told them that this place was being sold through an auction. The previous owner had passed away. He had no kids or wife, or any other family who could inherit it, so it went to the state upon his death.
“They got it at an amazing price. My brothers and I have always lived here. It’s the only home we’ve ever known.”
Evan sighed slowly, still admiring the land. “And it’s beautiful.”
Chandler nodded, gazing around as well. “Yes, it is.”
After a moment’s silence, Evan turned to stare into his eyes. He said, “Felix told me your parents died when you were only twenty-one and you had to look after your four younger brothers all by yourself.”
Chandler stared back in silence. He wasn’t smiling nor frowning, and he seemed to simply be thinking. Evan wondered if he was remembering the past and how it must have been hard for him to have so much responsibility put on his shoulders at such a young age.
“Yeah, I did. I also had to take care of the ranch. It was really difficult at first, especially with Bane, my hardheaded brother. It isn’t easy for two alpha wolf shifters to get along. And at that time he was a rebel, to say the least. But we all found a way to get along and work together.”
Staring deeply into Chandler’s eyes, Evan said in a soft, low voice, “You’re remarkable.”
Chandler chortled. “Thanks. No one has ever called me that before.” His laugh turned to a soft smile. “And so are you.”
Blushing once again, Evan lowered his gaze. “No, I’m not. I was never like you. I wasn’t a responsible person or caring of others. I was the opposite. I let my brother and my mom down.”
Chandler gently touched his chin, lifting it so Evan’s eyes would meet his. “You were young, and didn’t know any better. But now you do and have changed. So stop putting yourself down and be proud of who you’ve become. Evan Michaels, you are one remarkable, handsome, amazing guy.”
He leaned in, joining his warm lips to Evan’s. Electricity traveled through their contact, taking Evan’s breath away.
About the Author:
Jordan Ashton is a writer and wife whose passion for reading romance novels led her to writing them, too. She believes love can conquer all and that it makes the world go round, not money. Her heroes, heroines, and the worlds she creates bring this belief to life. She is and will always be a true romantic at heart.
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