April 26, 2010
In Step with Selena Illyria
This week we have the spellbinding and effervescent Selena Illyria with us. Selena’s work covers a wide scope with each enchanting story guaranteeing satisfaction. You can learn more about Selena and her work on her website. And now, a few words from Selena…
The wonderful Sloane asked me to guest on her blog and I just wanted to say thank you so much, Sloane! I’m here to talk about some of my latest releases.
The first one up is from the Sex and Chocolate multi-author series at Changeling Press.
All Connor wanted was for his significant other Roxi to relax. Opening her new café has been stressing her out. So to help her unwind he concocts his special Bliss Out Hot Chocolate. Only it doesn’t go quite as planned.
Roxi’s not relaxed at all. The seal containing her succubus nature is deteriorating and the hunger for sex is wearing down her self-control. Connor calls on his best friend, an incubus, for help.
Tired of losing control, she’d sought out the advice of a witch who told about the sealing ceremony. “The magicks involved are volatile and dangerous. You could die,” the witch had warned her.
“I don’t care. Just make it happen.” Guilt, fear, anger and desperation had driven her to this point. She wanted either to die or have the monster inside of her sealed away if it couldn’t be killed. Roxi felt as if the hungers were trying to claw their way out of her. Every second that went by, a little more of her control eroded away. The arousal extended thin fingers, tracing light touches up and down her spine. It lit nerve endings on fire and caused her pussy to contract. Her clit ached for a touch, anything to ease the need.
The world was a swirl of heat and desire. She swallowed and tried to push it all down. The power only shoved right back. Roxi stumbled backward and gasped as the energy surged upward. It stole her breath and sent her head spinning. She tried to breathe through the heat that was consuming her. A hand settled on her shoulder. Roxi looked up to find herself staring into calm, steady, golden eyes. Rough fingertips trailed over her cheek. She turned into the touch. Her lips connected with his palm. Without hesitation she kissed the soft skin and sighed. The desire simmered in her veins, but for the first time since her changing, she could control it.
Roxi closed her eyes and kissed his hand again. She inhaled his scent, a mixture of musk edged with something wild and chaotic. The effects of his cologne rushed through her. It sparked fires within her. Her succubus nature didn’t rise. Instead, it lay content at this man’s feet. He pulled his hand away. For a moment the need came roaring back, out of control. Then it was pushed away when he cupped her chin, leaned forward and kissed her.
The first touch of his mouth was tentative, hesitant. When she didn’t push him away, the kiss became more. She heard his heartbeat in her head. The sweet and salty tastes of blood rolled around her mouth. Roxi hungered for him to sink deep inside of her until they were one. A thirst for his blood rose up so strong that she bit him. Instead of moving away from her, he groaned. She felt his arms wrap around her. He pulled her close. When their hips touched, she felt his erection pressing against her stomach. Her pussy contracted. Desire dampened her panties. She wanted to feel every inch of him inside of her, fucking her hard.
Roxi broke the kiss. Her breath came out in soft pants as desire threatened to tug under its riptide. She looked up at him. Although her gaze was pulled toward his golden eyes, she studied his features fully from his high brow, to his sculpted cheekbones, aquiline nose and sensual lips. What shocked her most were the scars that slashed through his cheek and dragged the left side of his mouth down.
She reached up and traced the fine lines lightly.
He grabbed her wrist. The world stopped. Fear that she had done something wrong caused her to look away.
“It’s okay. The wounds still hurt, that’s all. Besides, I’d rather have your nails tearing up my back.” He smiled. Heat flushed her cheeks as she imagined their legs tangled with one another as their bodies moved together, trying to reach climax. “I’m Connor, by the way, reformed warlock.”
He gave her a kiss which made her smile against his mouth. She kissed him back. Roxi lifted her hand and threaded her fingers through his hair. The silken strands trailed against her palm and sent pleasure up her arm. He rocked his hips against hers, and she moaned and grabbed a handful of hair. Roxi pulled back to look up at him. “Don’t start something you can’t finish.”
I had so much going on when it came time to write this story. It had been rolling around in my head for a long while, but I didn’t have time. Once I sat down to write it the story had changed quite a bit. The characters had decided to switch things on me. Don’t you hate/love when that happens? Their way was much easier to envision. I’d had a lot going on in my original plan. Like an orgy scene. I have no clue how I would have written it. Now I actually wanna see if I can. LOL. Hmmm…
The next book is also from Changeling Press. It comes from the multi-author series Bedtime Stories. The stories are set in a fictional e-publisher where you get to peek into the lives of some of the staff and writers, very sexy fun, I assure. My story takes a peek into the life of Kelsey, cover artist at Bedtime Press. She’s an elemental and a cat shifter who’s in heat. So when she makes a wish the results are… well, I’ll let you find out.
Cover artist Kelsey is on a deadline for Bedtime Press but her elemental powers are out of control. As a cat shifter, she’s in heat, which is interfering with her concentration. An electrical surge, power outage and the appearance of two sexy digital models come to life may be the answer to her prayers.
One session and you were hooked like a moronic fish.
Shut up, you, before I find the catnip. Besides, look at what we can do now.
Oh, of course it was all worth it. Digital models you can drool over. Do they come to life? Are they willing to fuck us to stop this damn heat? Hmmm? Didn’t think so.
Kelsey rolled her eyes. She opened a few images of her past work. Comparing then to now showed she’d improved immensely. Life before the Electric Ray 3-D plus package had seemed mundane. Going back to outdated models that looked awkward and at times not even attractive was impossible, not when she could make them so lifelike.
Kelsey whimpered as she looked up at the walls. Framed artwork of some of her digital art goddesses were lined up neatly in a row. Gorgeous models in various erotic poses and situations with so much detail they were surreal. Effective use of layering, colors and utilizing various brushes, all to create mini masterpieces. With Electric Ray 3-D she would be one step closer to the perfection she found in work from Leslie Stella or Anne Renée. Kelsey cursed her current situation.
To make things worse, the cover art requests were piling up. She’d just managed to send out her last cover only to get five more last minute requests. A scream rumbled up from her throat. It expanded and pushed upward, ready to burst forth. All she could do was swallow it down. No use getting frustrated. Work was work. Getting paid to feed her software habit was of the utmost importance.
Besides, anger was not good in this situation. Her energies were acting up. It was bad enough being a cat shifter who had gone into heat, but to be an elemental witch, as well, whose gift was electricity, was very dangerous to her equipment. She couldn’t afford to call Troll and request another custom built system along with the charge that went with reloading her software. Every time she was late with a cover or asked for some new software or computer equipment, that was another year to her contract. So far she was up to twenty years.
With a sigh, she got to work. Kelsey brought up her favorite new models, Jonny and Maximus. A quick scan of the printout for the cover art request form and she was off to the races. She’d blindly reach out and hit repeat or play on her little CD player while adjusting this and that. After four hours, she was almost happy with what she’d gotten accomplished. The poses were what the author had requested, and the background was almost right, but something felt off.
She peered at the screen. They don’t look lifelike enough. Kelsey saved her work and put it on her backup disc before she went searching on the internet for something that would help make it look right. Scrolling through the forums of her favorite artwork sites, she tried not to drool at some of the things she saw. There was a new package out for elf garb and some new action features she coveted with a vengeance. Then there was the movie star look-alike bundle that made her fingers tingle with want.
“It’s too bad I can’t use any of this,” Kelsey murmured with a sigh. She didn’t have enough hours in the day to test out the latest rendering tech. Vacation time was impossible when you were on Troll’s clock.
After two hours, she still hadn’t found what she was looking for, so she loaded up her art program again and got to work trying to figure out where she went wrong. After deconstructing her cover she discovered what the trouble was. There was no spark, no it that made the models look alive. No amount of rendering software could replace the ghost in the machine, as it were.
“They don’t look lifelike enough, but I’ll damn well try. Gotta keep tweaking the UV map and shader editor.”
Kelsey got up and put on another pot of coffee. She did a few yoga stretches before pouring a cup of java and getting back to work. Life faded around her until it was just her and the cover art. She used every trick she could think of to make the models seem as close to human as possible. Midnight had come and gone, and she was so buzzed she felt jittery, but none of that mattered. She was so close to finding what she was looking for.
Kelsey took a moment to look at the screen. She saw the sharp features, rugged good looks and chiseled abs of Maximus and almost drooled. Then there was the lean, athletic body of Jonny with high cheek bones, a boyish grin and a twinkle in his eye. “Damn, I wish these guys were real.”
Energy surged through her body. The hairs on the back of her arms and neck rose. Kelsey cursed before a major burst of power erupted from her fingertips, frying the keyboard and monitor. The lights in her office flickered before they went out.
My next offering is from the Strange Hollow series at Liquid Silver Books. Strange Hollow is a place where outcasts find inclusion and a community to support them. Are you vampire who prefers V-8 to blood or a werewolf who suffers from Selenophobia? Then Strange Hollow the place for you. You’ll find acceptance and support. My offering to the series is about a witch who has no magic and a werewolf who was exiled from his pack.
SEDUCING A WALLFLOWER
Liquid Silver Books
All Nia Reynolds has known is being seen and not heard. Being the only one in her family to not have magical ability is hard. On her thirtieth birthday, all Nia wants is to do something different. When she enters Sensual Were on a dare from Jacinda, she doesn’t expect the instant attraction to sexy store manager Bishop Steward.
Bishop has had his eye on the sweet and innocent Nia since he first came to Strange Hollow. After being publicly shunned by his pack and his mate, he came to Strange Hollow to recuperate and be among outcasts like himself. Now that his heart is mended, he wants to go after love again and has Nia in his sights. This wallflower doesn’t stand a chance against his onslaught. So what if he insists of public displays of a sexual nature, can’t stop whispering sweet, dirty nothings in her ear, and gives her a birthday to remember? It’s only for a night, right? A sexy werewolf like him wouldn’t want a shy girl like her? Right? Wrong–and he’s got a lot of tricks up his sleeve to convince her she’s just what he wants.
Thirty. The big three-O. Another year older. Nia sighed heavily and contemplated the looming specter just a few days away. Birthdays weren’t a bad thing per se, but when you lived such an unremarkable life, as she had, there wasn’t really much to celebrate. She was an anomaly in her family, the only one lacking magical ability. Nia couldn’t even perform the most basic of spells like warming water or levitating a feather.
Isolation became a constant companion when she mingled in magical circles. Everywhere she turned, her contemporaries were doing extraordinary things. All Nia could do was fade into the background like a wallflower. She got so used to being invisible that she automatically hid in a corner at social functions. She had lived her life in corners and it was starting to wear on her.
She’d broken out of that life nine years ago when she stumbled upon an Internet ad for Strange Hollow. The town was for outcasts and anomalies of the paranormal variety like her–people who just didn’t fit in. So on her twenty-first birthday she packed up as many of her things as she could carry and left in the middle of the night, without even leaving a note to her parents. Now she had a life of her own. Nia owned her own teashop, Pot Luck, had a cottage that she loved and a few friends that accepted her. The one thing that was missing was someone to share her life with.
She had just begun to clean the counter when the bells over the door jangled. Nia glanced toward the entrance and smiled. Jacinda, the town’s founder, strolled into the shop. The fairy’s energy sent a soothing wave toward her, and she instantly felt at ease.
“Hello, darling, how’re you doing? I’ll have a green tea latte.” Jacinda sat down on a stool at the counter and leaned forward, mischief sparkling in her eyes.
Nia got to work, hoping Jacinda wouldn’t bring up her upcoming birthday and anniversary. If the events weren’t mentioned, she wouldn’t have to admit she had no plans.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t to be. “So, your birthday and anniversary are on Friday. Doing anything special?”
“Nothing.” Nia stiffened.
“Not even ice cream and cake or a movie marathon of your favorite films? What about a small party with some friends? No? We can’t let this momentous event pass without any acknowledgment. Let me think. What can we do?” Jacinda put her elbows on the counter-top and rested her head in her hands.
Nia didn’t want to know what Jacinda was thinking. There was a mischievous sparkle in those violet eyes that she didn’t want to read too much into.
“Have you been to Sensual Were?”
Nia wasn’t sure where Jacinda was going but she had an uneasy idea. “No,” she said softly.
A wicked smile curved Jacinda’s lips. “Idea! I dare you to go to Sensual Were and pick up a sexy toy for yourself. Do something daring for once. Honey, you’ve lived in a corner for far too long, it’s time to drag this wallflower into the light.”
“But–” Nia started.
“Why but?” Jacinda gazed at her in question. “You’ve lived your whole life not interacting with people for fear of the disappointment and rejection your parents and others have handed you. Isn’t it time you lived for you? Come on, Nia, when have you done something for yourself? I’ve seen the way you interact with others. You let them tell you what to do, how to do it. You don’t do what you want to do. What’s there to be afraid of? All I’m suggesting is to check out Sensual Were. Go in there and get something sexy for yourself. You deserve it. Look at you.”
Nia knew what she looked like and she was nothing like the gorgeous Jacinda, with her luminescent skin, violet eyes, long dark hair and curvaceous figure. Last she checked, Nia was plain, with unremarkable dark brown hair, dark brown eyes, milk chocolate skin and an average figure. Her simple clothing did nothing to flatter her body. She also wore glasses, and in her book that screamed nerdy and unsexy. To hide her reaction, she said nothing and finished making Jacinda’s drink.
“Have you ever felt sexy? What makes you feel good about yourself?”
Heat flushed her cheeks as she thought of her fantasies, which usually involved sexy men who were good with their hands and other things and wanted her unabashedly.
“Come on, sweetie, you can tell me. What makes you feel sexy?”
“Well, um, a sexy, gruff voice–”
Jacinda cut her off with a laugh. “No, no, no, babe, not what is sexy but what makes you feel that way.”
The blush encompassed her face, and Nia found herself floundering for a response. “Um, well…”
“Lingerie, perhaps? Or maybe sensual music? How about an erotic story? This is about making you feel desirable and good about yourself. I’m not saying we give you a makeover, you’re beautiful. I’m talking about doing something sexy for you and only you, no guy required.”
Jacinda smiled, and Nia felt unsure. “I’ve never… That is to say, I don’t know…”
“How about this? Friday you go to Sensual Were and poke around, see what you like, explore and find what intrigues you. Then we meet on Saturday for brunch and talk.”
“Talk?” Nia put Jacinda’s latte down before her.
“Yeah, we talk about what you thought of your little trip. Honey, you’ve been here for nine years and you haven’t stepped out and explored this place. Including me, Tanya and Ryana are your only friends here.” Jacinda took a sip of her drink.
Nia became very interested in her shoes.
“Ry is out of town and Tanya is visiting relatives. Neither woman will be back by Saturday, so it’s up to me to coax you out of your shell. So, here’s the deal. Barring an emergency, I dare you to go to Sensual Were and pick out something sexy for yourself. Thanks for the latte, hon. I have to go welcome a new resident to Strange Hollow. I’ll see you on Saturday.” Jacinda stood and picked up her cup.
“Bye,” Nia called out as Jacinda left with a backward wave. Once the door closed and quiet settled on the shop, questions and humiliating scenarios swirled around in her head. What if I break something? Her palms began to sweat at the thought of picking up a vibrator and have it start shaking and then shatter in her hands. She’d never been in an adult toy store before. What if it was filled with pictures of naked people? She didn’t like looking at herself naked, much less see anyone else in the buff. Well, except for sexy men. Part of her wanted to take up Jacinda’s dare and go to Sensual Were. On the other side of the coin, she was terrified of the unknown.
We’ll be back tomorrow with more from Selena. Until then…
Sweet as Honey…Hotter than Hell