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The New Car Saga

Things tend to go badly for me. Not always, of course, but usually my luck doesn’t run so good. When I got into a car accident that ultimately totaled my car–a car that I loved–two weeks after replacing the water pump and 4 months after putting on new breaks, I thought it was more of that bad luck.

A little background for those who don’t know: I don’t actually like driving that much. I do it because I must, and I do it well. It’s everyone else on the road that’s terrifying. I am one of those cautious drivers who follows all the rules and doesn’t speed. Okay, sometimes I speed but never by much. And if I’m going somewhere with other people, I always get them to drive. But even though I don’t like driving so much, I love cars. Classics especially, but just cars in general. (And Chevys in particular. Pretty sure Chevy love is in my DNA. Or perhaps generational conditioning.)

Anyway, after my little Lola was deemed a total loss, and after we sorted out all that paperwork and I got the check and it cleared the bank…it was time to get a new car. So Saturday I took my sister and we went to look at cars. I knew what I wanted and how much I wanted to finance and for how long. And I was fairly certain we weren’t going to find that or it wasn’t going to work out (because my luck isn’t that good. And also I have generalized anxiety disorder so that makes me worry extra hard).

But the stars aligned. In a way they hardly ever do for me. The right car for the right price and low mileage. All the fancy amenities and perks she had were just a bonus. The right sales person who was full of stories and tattoos and LGTBQIA friendly. And the right time because they were able to give me same day delivery.

I went in at noon expecting to test drive a few cars and walk away with a better idea of what I wanted. I drove off the lot five and a half hours later in a 2020 Chevy Equinox that’s so fancy it makes my techy heart sing.

It wasn’t completely smooth sailing, as it took two trips home and back to the dealer for various things. But it wasn’t very far. And I had signed half the paperwork before I realized they had my middle initial wrong and they had to reprint all the paperwork.

She’s certainly not as gas efficient as my Sonic was. But she’ll be a heck of a lot better in Central New York winters, which was my big need when looking. The all wheel drive is a big plus. Plus there’s a lot of convenience features that just make driving nicer.
The automatic lift gate might be my favorite bonus, but there are a lot to choose from.

But when I say the stars aligned, I’m not kidding. It was a perfect storm of everything falling into place. I’ve probably used up all my good luck, but I’ll take it. Because now this chapter is done and I can put it behind me. And it’s a stressor gone from my life.

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Mages and Mates

Do I need to tell you how much I enjoy reading and writing series again? No, I didn’t think so.

I think it’s pretty obvious by now that this is going to be a whole thing. When I wrote the first episode of Gareth and Owen, I had intended, whole-heartedly, for it to be a one shot. Literally just Gareth summoning his familiar and surprise, it’s a shifter instead! That was it. But it ended up being a whole-ass thing. A 13 part serial story. And in the process, of course, Aeron was there and obviously Lane.

So it’s not only a serial, but a series. I’m enjoying it so much I intend to continue. Because Aeron obviously needs his story. And then….well, maybe other people too. I like this world I created, and I love that I can just throw out episodes when the muse strikes (though I do try to be fairly consistent, barring life.)

So it’s a thing now. And it will continue to be a thing. We’re calling it the Mages and Mates series.

In that vein, I’ve done a few things to make navigation here easier. Somehow, in all the time I’ve spent here, updating and reorganizing and changing colors and themes and pictures et al…I’ve never noticed that the tags aren’t in the sidebar. So I fixed that. Now you can click on any one of those and it’ll take you to the fic or just the serials or any other tag. So that should make things a bit easier, even if they are in reverse order, so you’d have to scroll to bottom to start at the beginning.

I’ve also gone through and made sure both serials are ALSO tagged with the Mages and Mates tag. And that all the other tags are correct as well. While I know the categories are helpful when searching, the tags are even more specific, so hopefully that helps as well.

So continue to enjoy the stories and the series and I’ll keep writing!

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New Release!

Crystal Clear is out in the world!

With everything going on, I missed actual release day. *hangs head in shame* But the sequel to The 12th Witch is out now. You can get it here from the publisher (with a discount!) or click here if another platform is your preferred method.

You definitely need to read The 12th Witch first, so if you haven’t gotten it yet, then I suggest you start there. But if you’re looking for continuing love, Samhain, and just a bit of drama, make sure you check this out!

Sequel to The 12th Witch

Justin Trews lucked out when he found Cole Demauro and the coven he’s joined. He’s still working through his trauma, but he now knows what it’s like to be supported and cared for. His magic is thriving, and so is he. And of course, dating Cole has proven to be the best part. The past three months have been the happiest of his life.

When the veil is the thinnest, Justin experiences Samhain as it is meant to be. It’s a far cry from how he celebrated in the past. With the coven gathered, he participates in the ritual to honor the dead and the end of the harvest season. His magic is full and so is his heart.

But when Justin’s past rears it’s ugly head, he’s faced with dealing with his family. Old hurts run deep and insecurities resurface. Its hard not to feel like a burden and an imposition. With his coven behind him, and Cole’s love buoying him up, Justin finds the strength not only to confront his family but to rely on his coven for help. And when the dust settles, Justin has taken great strides toward healing. Now Justin needs to show Cole just how much he loves him.

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Connections

As a reader, I love connected books. I’m talking beyond just series, though I am an absolute fanatic for series. But what I mean here is for multiple books from the same author that has a character or a thing pop up in books that aren’t necessarily connected in any other way.

There you are, reading along, and the MC in the book has an interaction with someone else. And because you’ve read other books by that author, you recognize that person for who they actually are. Or the MC goes to a place that’s shown up before somewhere else. It always gives me a little thrill, like I’m in on an inside secret, and I think “Ha! I know that!” I particularly love it when it happens in a way that doesn’t necessarily impact the story. The MC could have had that conversation withany person or gone to any café/restaurant. 

When I write these kinds of things (and tbh, I haven’t done it as much as I’ve wanted to) I always have a little giggle about it. Jason didn’t have to send Cody gingerbread goodies from Pounds and Grounds, but it was fun for me to include it. Those two books don’t actually have anything to do with one another, but it was just an extra tidbit. Readers don’t lose anything if they haven’t read one or the other, but if you have readPumpkin Rolls & Porn Sounds then you get that “Ha!” moment when you read Gingerbread & Good Tidings. It was something that came to me in the moment, when I was writing that Christmas story, that I could include Pounds and Grounds

But one place I did it deliberately is with The 12th Witchand the very soon to be released Crystal Clear

For some explanation, I created the Magical Bureau of Investigations (though I know I’m not the only one). The MBI was invented for my worlds in which the human world knows about the paranormal one. And I had plans for it that never saw the light of day. 

But when I began writing Gareth and Owen’s serial story here on the blog, I knew it was time to make the MBI resurface. And, as you know, that led to a sequel for Agent Delaney Willis with his shifter mate Walker (and side note: don’t worry, you’ll see them again soon). When I was writing The 12th Witch, it only seemed natural for the MBI to be the Federal arm of law enforcement for that book as well. I realized pretty quickly that Justin and Cole would also get a sequel, as their story wasn’t done yet. 

And that’s when I decided, the moment I started writing Crystal Clear, that I would include an Easter egg. One that doesn’t impact the story in any appreciable way. But that readers of the blog serial will definitely spot. And hopefully have that “Ha!” moment. 

Crystal Clear will be out October 8th. You can preorder it here.

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Coming Soon!

On Saturday in fact. It can be in your hot little hands on October 8. You can pre-order it now, and it’ll be delivered right to your device if you so wish. Check it out at JMS or Amazon

Sequel to The 12th Witch

Justin Trews lucked out when he found Cole Demauro and the coven he’s joined. He’s still working through his trauma, but he now knows what it’s like to be supported and cared for. His magic is thriving, and so is he. And of course, dating Cole has proven to be the best part. The past three months have been the happiest of his life.

When the veil is the thinnest, Justin experiences Samhain as it is meant to be. It’s a far cry from how he celebrated in the past. With the coven gathered, he participates in the ritual to honor the dead and the end of the harvest season. His magic is full and so is his heart.

But when Justin’s past rears it’s ugly head, he’s faced with dealing with his family. Old hurts run deep and insecurities resurface. Its hard not to feel like a burden and an imposition. With his coven behind him, and Cole’s love buoying him up, Justin finds the strength not only to confront his family but to rely on his coven for help. And when the dust settles, Justin has taken great strides toward healing. Now Justin needs to show Cole just how much he loves him.

For the greatest enjoyment, you really need to read The 12th Witch first as it is the beginning of Justin and Cole’s story. Click here and scroll down to find buy links if you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet.

I love these guys, and I loved writing them again. This time, the story is from Justin’s POV, so we get a different perspective on the next stage of their relationship and the things going on in their life.

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So That Happened

You may have noticed that there was no Flash Fic Friday these past two weeks. There’s a valid reason for that.

Most of the time, I don’t write it until Friday morning. It’s how my schedule works out and it puts less pressure on me. Since the serials here on the blog are for my fun and enjoyment as much as yours, I strive to make it the most stress free I can.

Let me preface this story by saying I’m fine. Totally fine, other than some bumps and bruises.

But Friday 23 Sep, as I was driving to work, I was suddenly going off the road and crashed into a tree. A small tree, but still. Tree. It turns out someone was backing into the street, hit my car, and sent me off the road. Now, there’s a whole story about how she tried to blame me but it’s not worth it to rehash it here.

Needless to say, my plans got very derailed that day, because I went home and there was no way I was going to work. And it took me hours to fully stop shaking from the adrenaline rush. So I just made a mental note I would write one for yesterday and tell y’all why and move on.

Except yesterday ended up being another day where stuff happened. I was told that my car was deemed a total loss, so I had to go to the towing place to get the last of my things out of the car (because I didn’t completely clear it out on the day). I also ended up speaking with the loss team from my insurance and find out just how much I would be getting for the car. So I had to deal all of that as well.

All that is to say that I didn’t get anything written again. And while I debated writing something for today, and just posting a Saturday edition, but in the end I just had to chalk it up to stress and nonsense and postpone Lane and Walker for another week.

I have a book release next week, October 8th, so I’ll post info about that this week. Crystal Clear is the sequel to The 12th Witch and features Justin and Cole again. They do need to be read in order though! So make sure you pick up The 12th Witch if you haven’t already. As I said, more info soon on that.

Anyway! Take care of yourselves out there. I’ll have more good stuff coming your way soon.

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The Thing About Wolves

You may have noticed I’m a fan of shifters. Always have been. And don’t get me wrong, I do like me a non-traditional shifter. Show me your elephants or Guinea pigs or dogs or, I dunno, fish. I always find it interesting how these shifter balance their animal selves with the human.

But I will always, first and foremost, be in love with wolves.

Werewolves were always my favorite monster. The thing I should have been afraid of but never was. And as I grew up and the more I learned about the different myths and legends, werewolves cemented themselves in my heart and soul.

Besides there’s no denying that wolves are one of the most majestic and beautiful animals out there.

As I delved into writing PNR, and created my own lore, wolf shifters were what I naturally gravitated toward. And they continue to be where my heart lies.

So you may see other kinds of shifters show up in my books. But it’s mostly gonna be wolves. And I’m perfectly okay with that.

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Quick Updates

Hey all!

Firstly, the day job is still kicking my butt. Mostly in stress and there’s no need to rehash it all here. But is is taking up a great deal of my mental capacity, and when I get home all I wanna do is play animal crossing and decorate my island and not worry about anything. But despite that…

I finished the sequel to The 12th Witch! It’s been submitted and contract signed. So look for that in October. It’s the story of Justin’s continuing journey of healing. With Cole, and his love, right at his side. I had a heck of a time writing it as for a while I was having trouble getting going. I must have restarted like 4 times. Because every iteration was just very not right. Until it was. I’ll have more details when release gets a little closer.

And that’s not the only thing that will be coming from me. Soft Dom is Coming to Town will be out in December. It’s set in my fictional Landry’s Fall and features friends to lovers with a healthy dose of kink thrown in (if you couldn’t tell from the title.). I adore Garrett and Mason, and I hope you will too.

I haven’t yet cracked into a new story and I’m taking a little break. Hopefully not too long of one. I’m tossing around a few ideas and characters. I have a million plot bunnies to be sure. So we’ll see where that goes. As soon as I can get my writing brain back online.

Everyone be well and take care of yourselves!

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Out Today!

It’s JMS Books’ anniversary month! Books are on sale! And today, Cole and Justin enter the world. It’s currently on sale directly from the publisher so you can click here.

Cole Demauro is the de facto leader of his coven and he takes that responsibility seriously. But the coven is one member short and finding a witch to fill the spot has proven difficult. It’s not easy to find a person who not only has magic that resonates with the coven, but also fits in. But there’s no doubt the coven needs another witch to bolster everyone’s magic. After all, covens work best with twelve witches.

Enter Justin Trews.

New to the area and reluctant to join a coven, Justin’s been managing on his own. But it’s no longer enough. When they meet for the first time, Justin’s magic is a mess, and Cole is determined to help. Not only is the beautiful man clearly suffering, but Cole is the type to want to fix it. His attraction to Justin only increases that need. But what neither man expects is how well their magic fits together.

Justin is cautious, but Cole is nothing if not patient. He works to coax Justin out of his shell and persistently shows Justin there’s nothing to fear. When Justin agrees to take the risk, everything falls into place. Justin is a perfect fit for the coven. More than that, he’s the perfect fit for Cole.

I was super excited to be a part of this anniversary celebration, and I fell in love with Cole and Justin along the way. Which I’m sure surprises absolutely no one. This story has magic and two men who find their way to each other. Low angst, lots of good feels, and crystals and weather magic.

When I finished the story, though, I knew I wasn’t done with these guys. This story ends with an HFN, which is great. But Justin immediately told me that not only is there more to their story, but that he was the one to tell it. The 12th Witch is told from Cole’s POV, but Justin has some things to say. So I’m in the process of writing that down now, and if all goes according to plan (because I always need to hedge my bets) you’ll be able to pick up their next installment in a few months. Tentatively titled Crystal Clear I hope to have it out in October, just in time for Samhain.

Anyway, I hope you pick this up and enjoy it as much as I did writing it. As I said, it’s on sale now if you get it directly from JMS. And it’s available at the rest of the usual places, if you prefer to read a different way. Here’s a few links!

Amazon Apple Books Dreame Kobo

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Looking Back: Don’t Wanna Lose Your Love

**Looking back is a series here where I take a meander down memory lane and talk about my past books. I’ll bring insight to the inspiration behind the story and what the writing process was like. Hope you enjoy!**

This book. This is one of those books that stemmed from my own life in a lot of ways. It’s full of little easter eggs meant just for me and for my friend living all the way across the country. I was in a rut, to be sure, but there was a sub call (see, I told you there would be a pattern) for a story with an older MC. But I was stumped.

Until I almost fell down the stairs and busted my noggin.

From there, a story was born. Of Josie falling down the stairs and getting concussed. Of Ben, her friend across the country who gets an email in the middle of the night that his friend is hurt. And of Zack, Josie’s younger brother who contacts Ben. Of Ben getting a flight across the country to be with the sister of his heart, even though they’d never met in person.

Of Ben and Zack falling in love. Which is the most important part. Of course, it’s not easy. There’s an age gap to content with. The distance poses a problem. Ben hasn’t been in a serious relationship in a while and has resigned himself to the fact that it’s just not going to be an option for him. And of course, there’s Josie, who Ben would do anything for, and perhaps falling in love with her brother isn’t the best idea.

Zack, on the other hand, sees all that he wants in Ben. He’s the driving force for them to try, and he’s the one that brings them back together after they have to say goodbye. Zack is a ray of sunshine and optimism. He knows he’s what Ben needs.

And those Easter eggs I mentioned? Well they’re maybe not as amusing to the average reader as they are to me. There’s the title, for one, which comes for the song by The Outfield. (And happens to be a song that stalks both me and my friend.) It’s where Josie’s name came from as well. Josie is a knitter. Those emails Ben and Josie exchange, and how they met? Copying real life.

Needless to say, this one has a special place in my heart. I needed to get out of a writing slump and I needed something I adored. This story was exactly that in my time of need. For most readers, it’s just a cute little story about two men falling in love and overcoming obstacles. For me, it’s little pieces of my life put into a story because it amused me so.

You can read the blurb and find by links here. You can also find some additional flash fics I wrote there too. Just scroll down 🙂