Thursday, April 28, 2011
Loh Ah Mooi!
Congratulations from all of the flashers, Loh! And a big thank you to all of those who participated. You're all absolutely amazing, and we hope you continue to enjoy the Silver Flash Wednesdays.
And who knows? Another contest may pop up sooner than you think!
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
The results of last week's scavenger hunt will be announced by 12:00am EST on Friday, so be sure to check back!
And, lastly, happy birthday to my mama. She's turning the big 5-0 today!
Memories she couldn't possibly have flashed before her eyes. She and Raven were on the ground in one of the bark-covered structures, lying on pelts, rolling naked in the soft fur. His tender lips kissed her neck, her breasts, her mouth. She'd never felt the kind of pleasure this phantom was giving her now, thrusting into her, grasping her hands, keeping her close, then letting her ride, gasping for air, touching her, bringing her to a powerful climax--they were a single, writhing entity.
Then she was back in the midst of the horrible screams, looking into her lover's eyes as his hands were pulled behind his back by two warriors. The spirit dog stopped in front of Amber, staring at her. She finally got a good look at him. He was some kind of mixed breed, with a long nose, pointed ears, and brown around his eyes. He just looked at her, wisdom in his dark gaze, a powerful anger emanting from his being. Raven's panted struggles drew her eyes away from the animal. The shaman was carving the hourglass symbols into her lover's smooth skin as she watched, marking his hand, shoulder, and thigh. More words, more whispers "Sacrifice...Lake Serpent..." Some wanted to throw him to the monster. The monster that Amber suddenly knew was very real. She remembered. She'd seen it many times.
But they didn't get the chance to make a decision. The shaman was preparing to carve the same hourglass symbol into Raven's cheek when the spirit dog leapt from his place at Amber's feet and charged Raven. Throughout the dream, and even now, Amber remained frozen where she stood. She watched as the spirit disappeared into her lover's body. Then Raven changed. His teeth were sharp, his nails grew into strong claws, and his eyes were the dog's angry eyes. And they locked on Amber once again.
All Amber could do was shake her head. A single, simple movement. She knew everything. Raven was her husband. He'd gone on a hunting trip, gotten lost, begun to starve, and killed his dog. He'd not only failed at his appointed task, he'd committed a forbidden act. The elders made it clear that to kill your dog was to invite its spirit into your body. And, as you had killed your loyal companion, it would kill what was dear to you. Raven broke free from his restraints and charged Amber.
She awoke with a start. Light was just beginning to shine through the dorm room window. Amber put on her spare pair of glasses and glanced over at Jasmine's bed. She was gone. The blond had probably never come home. Amber ran a hand through her hair. She'd changed into a pair of comfortable shorts and a t-shirt to sleep in, and her eyes landed on the bandage around her calf. The wound stung. She unwrapped the gauze and gazed at the strange markings. I was definitely a bite mark; rows of tiny teeth had punctured her skin, leaving angry red, bloody blotches in their wake. Amber rewrapped the bandage quickly and focused on the clothes that were thrown carelessly over her computer chair. Raven's jacket was among them. She stood, picked it up, and smelled. All of the familiarity she'd experienced in her dreams came rushing back, warm and painful.
How could this be real? How could any of it be real? It wasn't. It couldn't be. Amber changed her clothes, pulled her hair back, and spritzed some body spray quickly across her torso. She just needed to get out of here, away from thoughts of Raven and the insaneness of her situation. But as she left the room, her eyes landed on the jacket again.
"You know what, there's no point to this," she murmured.
There was no ignoring, no denying. She was either out of her mind or she was the reincarnation of Raven's lover. And somehow it made sense for Raven to be haunted by the spirit of his dog, for her to have been a part of him and to still feel like a part of him, even though decades spanned between the last time they'd known one another. She needed to find him and try to figure out where to go from here. Amber grabbed Raven's jacket and slipped out the door.
Nicole Dennis (m/m)
L. M. Brown (m/m)
Lindsay Klug (m/f)
Sui Lynn (m/m)
Pia Valeno (m/m)
RJ Scott (m/m)
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Inspiration is a fun subject for a writer. Discussing what inspired and helped bring their latest creation/child into being is a very satisfying prospect indeed. I’m going to discuss what inspired me to write Leonardo di Caprio is a Vampire. But first I’d like to touch on a different sort of inspiration, also having to do with a child of mine, albeit not a literary one.
When we name our characters, we can draw on a great many things for inspiration, from the people in our lives to the people we wish were in our lives. Literary and cinematic role models often fuel our imaginations when it comes to names. There are mindboggling choices we narrow down into one which defines who our character is. So it is with children. Their names stick with them for all their lives and can very often contribute to who they are and who they become. Over twenty-one years ago, I gave birth to a daughter. At that time, I was heavily influenced by the world of Doctor Who, especially the Fourth Doctor and his companion. I named my daughter Sarah, after that companion, Sarah Jane Smith. Little did I know that years later, not only would she embrace the Doctor Who fandom, she would delve into it with even greater fervor and devotion than myself. Or was it simply meant to be? Did her name help to define her interest, or was the spark that was present in her at the time of her conception lead me to the right name?
Which makes the death of her inspiration difficult to take. I just learned that Elisabeth Sladen, aka Sarah Jane Smith, passed away from cancer. I read a most wonderful loving tribute to her by Fourth Doctor Tom Baker. And although she is gone, I cannot help but feel that a piece of her lives on inside my daughter. That is inspiration at its finest. Rest in peace, Elisabeth. You will be missed.
My inspiration for Leonardo di Caprio is fairly easy to figure out, to some extent—obviously it has something to do with the actor. It happened last year when I took Sarah to see Inception. I wasn’t sure how much I wanted to go, but Sarah did, and since she’d been good about going with me to see Sorceror’s Apprentice (twice), I gave in with good grace. As we were going into the movie, I couldn’t help but think about other Leo films I’d seen, which was when a voice in my head told me that Leonardo di Caprio is a Vampire.
I’ve learned over the years not to ignore random voices that I hear because they are characters waiting to have their stories told. Not being in a position to write the words down, I held on to them and repeated them to myself throughout the movie. By the time I left the theatre, I knew there two men involved and I needed names. The inspiration for the first name came from the movie Inception itself. Cillian Murphy’s character name was Robert Fisher. That name is heard a lot during the film; it stuck with me. Robert Fisher became Fisher Roberts. On the drive home, I couldn’t stop thinking about it, and I was looking for inspiration for the second man’s name. I saw a billboard that spoke of hunting. Now I’m not a fan of hunting, but the name Hunter leapt out at me, and I liked it. I added Long to make Hunter Long. It wasn’t til long after that I realized what I had unconsciously done – Hunter and Fisher. Just a coincidence, I assure you, unless it was done on a subconscious level.
Another great source of inspiration is art, and also photography. We see a picture and our fertile minds begin to create a story. If the picture is of a hot sexy man, so much the better. Inspiration is anything that kicks-starts our imaginations and gets our creative juices flowing.
And sometimes inspiration is a tug at our hearts.
'Twas the night before Halloween, and Fisher Roberts wishes it was over, not being a fan of this or any other holiday. But he tolerates it because his roommate/best friend Hunter Long takes a childish glee in all things Halloween. And Fisher has a vested interest in keeping Hunter happy. If only he could find the nerve to tell his childhood friend that he loves him, and has for a very long time.
Fisher thinks Hunter is carrying things a bit far this year, though. First Hunter claims to be a vampire, and he just won’t let the silly joke go. Then he forces Fisher to go to a costumed Halloween party which Fisher would rather avoid, especially when he realizes where it’s being held, and whose house it is. Things at Fisher’s job might just be going south, too, when he receives a mysterious summons to report to the editor’s office the next morning. And then Fisher goes and does something stupid—like kissing Hunter!
Bad leads to worse when Fisher ends up at the Halloween party from Hell, and he learns something that threatens to destroy his and Hunter’s relationship forever. Running from his fears, Fisher encounters a strange young man with an unusual resemblance to Leonardo di Caprio, who shows him things he never realized before, truths about his life and the people in it.
Can Fisher find his way back to Hunter, and can he find the courage to do what his heart wishes?
"Did you know that Leonardo di Caprio is a vampire?"
Fisher Roberts stopped in mid-chew of a mouthful of fibrous cereal to cast a wary, disbelieving glance at his best friend and roommate Hunter Long on the other side of the table. Wary, because he wondered what in the world Hunter was going on about so early in the morning. Disbelieving, because he only had so much time for breakfast before he had to get going to work, and he had a bad feeling that Hunter was trying to eat into that time. Why he wanted to do that was beyond Fisher. Of course, a lot of things about his roommate were beyond Fisher, despite the fact that they’d been friends since they were—well, too young to actually remember how long they’d known each other. But for as long as Fisher could remember, he and Hunter had been best buddies. And he’d learned over the years that, with Hunter, longevity did not equate to knowledge-ability, far from it.
Now, Fisher could react in one of two ways. He could ignore his roommate and keep eating. Pretend he’d heard nothing. But from past experience, that would only cause Hunter’s performance to escalate. Which would entail taking more time to decipher what he was saying, and in the process make Fisher even later to work. Or he could simply bow down to the inevitable and give in by asking him the question he was doubtless waiting to hear. Even if it brought about that smug smirk he was so fond of wearing.
Fisher finished chewing, swallowed, and managed not to roll his eyes as he reached for his juice to kill off what was left in the glass. Waste not, want not. "What do you mean?"
Hunter Long might be six foot two and possessed of a body that many a male model would kill for—at least that’s what Fisher heard the girls who flocked around him say—with the palest of blue eyes that twinkled all the time, and a smile that could and did light up a room. But honestly, he had the capacity to be an overgrown child at times, and this was one of those times. Fisher chalked it up to it being that time of year.
"Well," Hunter replied, "look at him, going on forty, and he looks just like he did what, fifteen years ago? It only stands to reason he must be a vampire. They never age, you know. I mean take a look at us. We’re almost his age, but over the years we’ll grow up to be little old men and he’ll still be playing sweet baby-faced guys even when he’s collecting social security, know what I mean?"
"There are no such things as vampires," Fisher made his typical logical reply, "and just because it’s Halloween tomorrow night, and you’ve got the house all decorated for it, doesn’t mean you have to bring it to the table. Know what I mean?" He arched a no-nonsense brow at the other man. This was not Fisher’s favorite time of year. Neither was Christmas, come to think of it. Or any other holiday. Ironic that he should write articles for a living that meant he was forced to expound on such seasonal topics for Midwest Home and Fantasy, a regional online magazine with a growing fan-base, when he had no real interest in them himself, being a practical, no-nonsense kind of a guy.
"I’m a vampire." Hunter smiled, leaning across the table toward Fisher. "Want to see my fangs?"
Friday, April 22, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
"I should go," Amber said quietly.
Raven paused, fingers still touching the skin of her neck, sending a shiver through her damp body. Her eyes were wide as she watched him. He didn't seem to want to let her go. She wasn't sure if she was afraid or not...or even if she wanted to be let go.
"You should," Raven agreed.
The splash and hiss sounded again. Amber looked towards the water. Her blurred vision and the moonlight gave everything a dreamlike effect. But she thought she saw something rise up out of the water, long-necked and angry. Another tremble shook her body. Raven's hand moved to her shoulder and tightened its grip, strangely comforting, instinctive, once again feeling too right. Amber's glance found his scars again briefly before meeting his eyes. She didn't want to leave him. She couldn't explain it. Her hand reached up and grasped his hard forearm. She wanted to kiss him. A a strange and sudden desire settled in the pit of her stomach, clenching her heart, taking her breath away. But she couldn't act on it. It didn't make sense.
"I'll take you home," Raven told her.
He didn't answer. Instead, he just slid an arm around her waist and guided her away from the shore, into the woods. It wasn't long before they came to a paved road, used by the occasional cyclist. But tonight the only object in view was a motorcycle. This was a bad idea. How could it not be? Hopping on the back of a stranger's motorcycle and riding away with him into the night, after hearing the crazy man talk about monsters, after seeing one for herself. But he got on, revved the engine, and kicked the kickstand out of the way. He waited for Amber to make her decision.
His eyes were dark, his tone too serious to leave room for indecision. This wasn't how Amber had imagined her love life going. Meeting a dark, scarred stranger who believed in monsters was not in her plan. She'd imagined meeting a handsome, established doctor at a conference who could complement her intelectually. She'd even considered the idea of a philosphizing, misunderstood barista. Wouldn't that be romantic? But not this. Not this danger, this uncertainty. She just didn't understand. Maybe it was the drinking. Maybe she'd lost more blood than she'd realized. Maybe she was hypnotized. In any case, she found herself saying, "You know where to find me," instead of running far, far away.
Raven gazed at Amber for a long moment. He was having a hard time leaving her. She knew because she felt the same way. But Raven gave the bike gas and drove off. Amber stood on the dimly-lit walkway, watching him go, before finally turning and heading for her dorm.
Monday, April 18, 2011
Hey, everyone! I've organized a little contest for all of you Silver Flash! readers out there. This Wednesday, April 20th, list this week's participating authors and the names of their main characters, e-mail them to me here, and you'll be entered to win this fabulous prize package:
One travel bottle of Bath & Bodyworks Sensual Amber bodywash and Sensual Amber lotion from Heather Lin
One bookthong from Lindsay Klug
Homemade bath bombs from Victoria Blisse
One ebook from RJ Scott
One ebook from Lily Sawyer
One ebook from Pender Mackie
One ebook from Julie Hayes
One ebook from LM Brown
One ebook from Xavier Axelson
The deadline for entries is 11:59pm EST on Tuesday, April 26th, and the drawing will take place on Thursday, April 28th with the winner being announced right here by midnight on Friday, April 29th. We hope you'll join us! :)
Sunday, April 17, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Party central was one mile from the college. Jasmine's friend, Tara, threw them on the rocky shore of a wide lake that was hidden from view by a dense forest. Amber and Jasmine arrived together. The bonfire made the whole shore glow, flickering off of the deep water and beer bottles. Jasmine had convinced Amber to put on her shortest denim shorts, but she wore a long-sleeved shirt and kept her auburn hair straight and free; she didn't have the patience for curling irons. The girls sat down with a few friends from their classes. Amber knew Ash from History, and he handed her a beer.
"Hey, Amber," he greeted.
"Want a cig?"
They clinked their beers together and drank. It didn't take long for Jasmine to end up in some boy's lap; another couple formed across from her. Amber felt awkward. She couldn't just throw herself at someone like that. She glanced over at Ash, and he winked. She smiled politely and finished her beer. Then she stood.
"Do you want another?"
Ash grinned; his body language was tense, hopeful. Amber considered the option for a moment. Ash was quite good-looking, actually. Blond hair, blue eyes...He played some kind of sport. What was it? Lacrosse? Maybe. Amber reached into a cooler and grabbed two bottles.
But Ash had no idea what he wanted. Not many of her friends did. Amber was the odd one out. She was studying Psychology. After she graduated, there would be graduate school, and then she'd work under a reputable psychologist and eventually open her own practice. Men were in there, of course. Somewhere. But it would take someone special to make her look twice. Someone interesting.
Her mind flitted to the man from the college café before she could stop it. What was it about him? He was so attractive, so intriguing, but so...not dangerous, exactly, but certainly not safe. Amber told herself he'd only entered her brain as an example of someone she would never be interested in.
She felt a hand on her shoulder, and she jumped. It was Ash, cigarette in hand.
"Everything okay?" he asked.
"Yeah. Daydreaming. Here you go." She handed him the beer and touched his cigarette lightly with her index finger. "That will come back to haunt you, you know."
"So they tell me." He took a puff and blew it out again. "I like you, you know."
"Oh." He seemed taken aback.
Amber blushed. That hadn't been the right response. "Um, sorry, I'm just...focusing on school right now."
Amber smiled, and they clinked bottles. The mood was light again.
"Hey, do you...want to go for a swim?"
Amber looked from Ash to the water. The idea of swimming at night had never really occurred to her. She supposed it was warm enough, but she hadn't brought any swim wear. Ash was grinning. She could do it. She could be spontaneous. And it might help to make up for the fact she just rejected him.
Ash threw his cigarette down and stomped on it. Then he tossed his keys down beside the cooler and peeled off his shirt. His shoes and sneakers came off next. Amber hesitated, then pulled off her shirt and tossed her slip-ons aside. It wasn't much different than wearing a bikini, and she left her shorts and glasses on. She wasn't planning on going under water, after all. She glanced around. No one seemed to be paying much attention. People were playing volleyball or roasting marshmallows or making out. Ash took her hand and tugged, encouraging her to join him in the water. She waded. He dove in.
Germs. Germs were on her mind. What exactly was in this water? Algae could carry E. Coli, couldn't it? But Ash pulled her down, laughing and splashing, and she let go of her reservations. The water was cool, refreshing against her skin. She and Ash had known one another for a year, and while they didn't talk often, conversation was free and easy when they did. Amber began to backstroke, pushing herself along. The full moon shone on the surface. Ash splashed her, and she swam after him.
Before she knew it, they were far from shore, and she couldn't find the bottom of the lake with her feet. The sensation was terrifying and exhilerating all at the same time. Ash shook the water out of his hair. Amber's glasses were wet; she could barely see. But she could feel. Strong arms grabbed her around the waist. She thought Ash was just goofing around, but then his lips pressed down on hers. Amber struggled and finally managed to break free, swimming clumsily away. Ash grabbed her again. Fear and anger erupted in her heart, and she smacked him.
"Cut it out!" she shrieked.
"Ow! Dammit, Amber. You're such a bitch."
Ash rubbed his face and headed back to shore. Amber watched him go as best she could through her foggy lenses. She should have known the swim wasn't as innocent as it had seemed. She was upset, embarrassed. She wasn't ready to follow him back yet. She kept herself afloat, anxiety burning in her chest.
But Amber's problem quickly became insignificant. Something brushed against her leg beneath the water. The depths remained dark, even with the full moon shining. Before she could decide whether or not to be afraid, something snapped closed on her calf and tugged, trying to pull under the surface. Panic was at the forefront of Amber's mind, making her dizzy, near fainting. She thrashed wildly, struggling against the insistent weight.
Through her terror, she caught a glimpse of the opposite shore and what she thought was the tall, naked figure of a man. Moisture dripped from her glasses. It could easily have been an illusion. But she screamed the first name that came into her terrified mind. It just seemed right somehow.
Then she was pulled under.
More next week! Be sure to check out the other flashers! Julie Hayes (m/m) Sui Lynn (m/m) RJ Scott (m/m) L. M. Brown (m/m) Lindsay Klug (m/f) Pender Mackie (m/m) Ryssa Edwards (m/m)