Please welcome this week’s guest author, Rie McGaha. Thanks so much for agreeing to appear on my blog this morning.
Q: To begin, please tell everyone which genre you write in.
A: Erotic, fantasy, paranormal, mystery, romance…I like these genre’s because it gives me more freedom with imagination and I can vary from facts, using only what I need to promote the story line and improvise the rest
Q: How long did you write before you received your first contract for publication?
A: I’ve been writing since I was old enough to make the letter “A”, but didn’t write seriously for publication until about six years ago. I was one of those who wound up having my first submission published, but I’ve had plenty of rejections since then!
Q: So, if you don’t mind sharing, would you tell us about your latest work in progress?
A: My latest novel, Calen, the first book in the My Soul To Keep Trilogy was just released last week, and I am now working on a novella called Fire Light.
Q: Out of all the stories you’ve written, which is your favorite?
A: My favorite is one that has yet to be published. It’s called Cross The Line and set just after the Civil War during the Indian Wars. The leads are a white woman who was raised on a plantation with slaves, and during the War, Yankee armies burn the plantation, killing her mother and older sister while her father is off fighting. When he returns, he moves his two surviving daughters to Indian Territory. The male lead is a runaway slave who has been taken in by an Indian tribe. After being injured by a mountain lion, he knows if he doesn’t get help, he’ll die. The nearest place is a farm, and this is where the leads meet. The story chronicles their relationship as they search for a place in an ever-changing America.
Q: Do you need to be in a specific place or atmosphere before the words flow?
A: I sure do, but it’s more like where my head is, than a physical place. I might go months without writing a word, but when it starts, I can’t stop!
Q: What’s the strangest source of inspiration you’ve found for a story?
A: I wrote a novel called Blood Line that was released last October and the story line came from a dream my husband had. He’s a truck driver and dreamed he was attacked by werewolves—believe it or not, this is one of his less weird dreams—so I just began building on his dream and a novel was born. One of the characters, Ganda, then took on a life of her own and now I am very close to finishing the sequel, Ancient Blood, which tells Ganda’s story.
Q: If you could offer one tidbit of information for new writers, what would it be?
A: Never stop learning your craft. There is a wealth of information in other writers, editors, publishers, etc., so ask questions and keep writing.
Q: Do you have an evil day job or do you write full time?
A: No, I don’t have any other job…I have a husband instead!
Q: What do you like to do in your spare time?
A: I have twelve children, twenty-four grandchildren, eighteen dogs, one cat, eleven works in progress and a husband—so in my spare time my husband and I are members of the Patriot Guard and participate in those events, and we like to fish and hunt.
Q: Name one thing readers would be surprised to learn about you.
A: I used to be a drug counselor in an all male prison where I was the only female on a unit with 120 male inmates!
Q: What’s your favorite dirty word?
A: lol, all of them
Q: What’s your favorite holiday, and why?
A: Christmas. My kids are scattered around now, and my youngest son is a United States Marine, and usually gets leave to come home for the holidays. When they’re all at home with their own children and the house is a noisy mess, I am so happy!
Q: Do you have any tattoos or piercings?
A: I have three tattoos. One on my left boob, one on my right shoulder, and one that wraps around my right ankle. The one on my ankle is my favorite because it’s a garland of black roses, and in the vines are the names of my children, and in the petals are the names of my first five grandchildren. So now you know how old the tattoo is! And I’ve told my kids there’s no way I’m getting the rest of the grandkids’ names on there because the vines would have to wrap all the way around my calf up to my knee! I used to have my tongue pierced, but that lasted about six months and I couldn’t stand it anymore.
Q: If you could be intimate with three people (not necessarily all at one time *g*) without getting in trouble with your significant other, who would they be?
A: I don’t have that kind of fantasy…but you should talk to my husband—I think his involves me and Angelina Jolie!
Q: If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you want with you?
A: Rum, rum, and maybe some rum!
Q: If you won the lottery tomorrow, what would you spend the money on?
A: I would buy all of my kids a house and a car, and put all my grandkids through college—that should take all of the cash right there!
Q: Which household chore do you abhor and why?
A: I’ve done them for so long, I don’t even think about it anymore. But I wouldn’t turn down a maid either!
Q: What’s your favorite comfort food?
A: Green chili chicken soup with homemade bread.
Q: Do you have any guilty pleasures you feel comfortable sharing?
A: I like to watch sappy romance movies while eating Ben & Jerry’s…does that count?
Q: Do you have a favorite book or movie?
A: I love James Patterson’s Alex Cross books! My fav movie is China 9, Liberty 37, but they changed it from its original version and I don’t even know if you can still get the original. I like old movies, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence, Kelley’s Heroes, etc.
Q: Anything else you’d like to share?
A: I’m all over the internet and I like making new friends, so if any of your readers would like to send friend requests to me on my space, facebook, twitter, etc. go to my website at www.riemcgaha.com and click on links. There you’ll be able to go right to my profile pages.
Q: In closing, tell us a bit about your latest release (& share a yummy excerpt for those who aren’t yet familiar with your work)
A: CALEN-MY SOUL TO KEEP now available from Noble Romance Publishing at http://www.nobleromance.com/BrowseListing.aspx?author=8
When Calen MacLeod begins having dreams of an ethereal beauty who beckons to him, he passes it off as just having an itch he hasn’t scratched in a long time. But when he leaves on a journey to find her, following the directions she’s given him in his dreams, he begins to doubt his sanity. And when he finds himself high in the Mackinaw Mountains in a secret fortress with unicorns and a pink and white castle, surrounded by women, each one more beautiful than the next, it’s a fantasy no man would want to wake up from. Calen’s life would be perfect, but there’s just one thing standing in his way: a 500 year old demon intent upon destroying Arianna, Calen’s new-found love, and her entire world.
He rode hard, stopping only to rest and water his horse when the sun sat high in the sky. He had no idea what he was doing or where he was going. He just figured when he got into the mountains, he’d somehow have an answer. He hoped. He rode throughout the day and on into the night. He built a small fire and made himself a dinner of the food he’d packed. He took a flask from his belt and swallowed a healthy shot of whiskey. Then he lay down on the blanket and shut his eyes.
She stood on the other side of the fire and watched him sleep. He was more beautiful in person than he was in her dreams. His face was soft in repose and she walked slowly to him, careful not to make any sound that might wake him. She knelt beside him, her fingers itching to touch, even for a second, the smooth skin of his face. She wanted to trace her fingers over those full, kissable lips. She wanted to run a finger over his high cheekbones, along his jaw, over his brow. She wanted to kiss him.
He slept without a shirt and the sight of his bare chest caused her breath to catch in her throat. He was tanned from the summer sun, and she wanted to touch the golden hair on his chest. To trace a line down his body to where more hair covered his stomach and then disappeared in a trail below the band of his leather breeches. She wanted to know what else lay below that line and if the bottom half of him was as beautiful as the top.
She hugged her knees tightly to her chest to give her hands something to do or else she knew she would touch him. And that was not allowed. She broke the rules just by being with him now, but she was not actually making contact with the mortal. She had not spoken, had not reached for him, and she had not wakened him. Oh, she wanted to wake him—to wake him and do much more—but time had run out and she needed to get back or she would be missed. She sat for a moment longer and when he stirred, she caught her breath. He settled back into sleep and impulsively, she softly kissed his brow. Then she disappeared.
Calen stirred. He reached for her. She was so close, and he sensed she wanted him as badly as he wanted her. He opened his eyes and sat up. The fire had burned down to little more than smoldering coals and he knew he’d not go back to sleep, so he threw the blanket back and reached for his boots. He looked around and the hairs on his nape stood at attention. Was someone watching him from the shadows? The wind kicked up and he caught her scent on the breeze. Calen froze. He listened, but heard nothing. He peered into the darkness. Again, nothing. But when he inhaled, her scent was still there. She’d been there; he knew it as rightly as he knew his own name.
He mounted his horse and pressed on through the darkness. He rode a course he wasn’t aware he knew. The sun rose and he headed on toward the mountains. He could see them in the distance, another couple of days, he thought, maybe a little more. He didn’t know why he was going there, didn’t know what he’d find once he arrived, didn’t know what he’d do once he got there. Or even where there was. But still he pressed on, for the rest of that day and into the evening. He stopped, made camp, ate his meal, took a long pull from the whiskey flask, and then lay down. He didn’t fall asleep, but let his eyes close and his breath become shallow. He knew she would come and he waited for her. He knew the moment she appeared, but he lay still, not wanting to frighten her.
She came silently around the fire and stood so close he could feel the heat from her body. He fought the urge to reach out for her, to wrap his hand around her wrist and pull her to him. She watched him a moment then sat next to him. He continued to lie still, hoping the thudding of his heart wouldn’t betray him. She drew her legs up to her chest and wrapped her arms around them, laying her cheek against her knees. She watched him in silence and then, ever so carefully, she reached out and touched the ends of his hair with a single finger. Her scent assaulted him. He could not restrain himself and took her wrist in his hand, gently, but firmly enough that she could not pull free.
She inhaled sharply and jerked back. His eyes flew open and their gazes met. Her eyes were as clear and brilliant as a midsummer day. Her hair fell below her waist in a cascade of dark, honey-blond. Her face was small, heart-shaped and so lovely he couldn’t stop himself from grazing her cheek with the back of his hand. She was small, as slender as a reed, and her tiny breasts were as round and firm as ripe peaches. Her little nipples puckered beneath her sheer white gown. The dress had pooled high on her hips while she had sat looking at him and her long legs were bare and shapely, her ankles were slim and he had an almost irresistible urge to lick them and suck on her toes. She looked like a fairy rising out of the mist.
She watched as his gaze slide up and down her body, wondering if he knew he was licking his lips. His mouth fascinated her. The rules forbade contact between them in this manner, but she couldn’t remember why. Nor did she care at that moment. She relaxed and he released the grip he had on her wrist. She stood up and he started to follow, but she put a finger to her lips to still him. He leaned back on his elbows and waited.
She battled the decision whether to fall into his arms or leave him where he lay. She wanted to stay with him, so strong was the desire growing within her, and risk everything she knew in order to have him. But there were so many other things to consider, so many other issues that had to be put above her own desires. She needed him, but so did her people, and that came first, no matter the heat rising within her.
“I cannot stay,” she whispered.
“I don’t want you to go,” he whispered back and came up on his knees.
She smiled softly, sadly. “I know, but we must wait.”
“Why? Why can’t you stay?”
“All will be made clear when you arrive, but for now you must be patient.”
“When I arrive where? I don’t even know where I’m going!”
“You know. In here,” she said as she laid the flat of her hand over his heart. “Follow your instincts and you will arrive where you are meant to go.” She pressed a kiss to her fingers and touched them to his mouth, and then turned to leave.
He came to his feet and reached for her, caught her hand in his and drew her to him. He cupped her face and brushed her lips in the lightest of kisses. He slid his fingers into her hair and felt her weight come down on his chest. She was so soft, so sweet, and his heart slammed in his chest. The air around them vibrated and shimmered, the wind rose, and the fire leaped into the sky. He drew back and looked into her eyes. She placed a hand against his cheek and pulled away from him. She leaped to her feet then walked slowly toward the fire and disappeared into the night.
He didn’t sleep the rest of the night. When dawn broke he readied his mount and rode onward toward the mountain range looming on the horizon.
She sat on a log at the edge of the trees watching him. She was fascinated with him, with his body. His muscles rippled when he walked. His thighs and calves were well defined and his rear was tight and much whiter than the rest of him. She watched as he washed himself, imaging those big hands roaming over her body in much the same way. She didn’t understand the feelings going on inside her where this man was concerned. She was only sent to guide him, to make sure he found his path, and to insure no harm came to him along the way.
She knew what a man was, of course, though he was the first mortal male she’d ever seen with her own eyes. The males of her kind had been annihilated so many years ago she had nearly forgotten them altogether. Since that time only one two women dared leave the safety of the Fortress to be with a mortal man, and now, both were dead.
Arianna was guiding this man now only because his life had been entrusted to her. But she wasn’t supposed to be watching him this way, and she wasn’t supposed to be having feelings for him, either. She wasn’t sure exactly what those feelings were, but she knew that the need to touch him was nearly overwhelming. He was the most beautiful thing she’d ever laid eyes on, and although she didn’t understand what she felt, she now knew why those who had chosen to leave the Fortress for a mortal had done so. She would leave for this one, she knew, even though she couldn’t say why. But the task ahead of them both was much more important than what she wanted for herself. Nevertheless, she would take what she could get.
Calen dipped under the water to rinse and came up with a splash. He almost choked when he saw her standing at the water’s edge staring at him. He didn’t move a muscle, feared she’d disappear if she thought he was coming toward her. She raised her hands and slipped the thin gown off her shoulders, letting it pool on the ground at her feet. He made a strangled sound as he drank in the sight of her nude body. He’d never seen anyone like her. She came toward him, one slow, careful step at a time. And then she was less than arm’s length from him. He didn’t move, he didn’t speak, and he didn’t breathe.
She reached out to him, placed her hand on his bare chest, let her fingers slide beneath the water over his stomach. He placed his hand over hers and stepped into her. He reached for her, touched her silky hair, and let his fingers fall to her shoulders. She was so small, he thought as he looked down at her. The water that barely reached his ribcage rose to her chest, causing her breasts to float, and making hard peaks of her nipples. He grasped her around the waist and lifted her to him. Her hands laced around his neck, weaving through his hair. He lowered his mouth to hers and drank. She opened to him with a sigh and wrapped her legs around his waist. His hands fisted in her hair, pulling her head back as he took the kiss deeper. The air sizzled and popped, the earth tilted, and the wind whipped the branches of the trees. Desire ripped through him, and he pressed her, demanded more from her, and she gave it willingly.
His mouth bruised hers as their tongues mated. His hands slid down her back, over her bottom and he lifted her. He could feel the tip of his hard cock pressing against her; with one movement he could be buried deep inside of her. A growl rose from his chest as he fought the urge to slam into her. He would not take her like this, not the first time. He forced himself to break the kiss, to pull back, and sucked in a lung-full of air. She tilted her head and looked into his eyes.
“Not like this,” he said on a ragged breath. He carried her through the water to the bank. He scooped up the gown she’d worn and carried her to the bed he’d made by the fire. He set her on the pallet and used a clean shirt to dry her, then slid under the blanket and pulled her in close to him. She curved into his body like she’d been made for him. He rose on one elbow and looked deep into her eyes.
“I don’t even know your name.” He kissed her forehead, her eyelids, and her cheeks.
“Arianna,” she said softly.
“Arianna.” He repeated her name, saying it reverently, like a prayer.
He kissed her again, gently. Sucked her bottom lip into his mouth, felt her breasts pressing against his chest, then kissed her deeply. She followed him, kissed him back like it was something they’d done time after time. He moved his hand down her body, over her flat stomach, down her legs to the soft flesh of her inner thighs. She shifted and his fingers found the center of her heat. He moved a finger over her, and the downy hair parted for him as she raised her hips to him. He found her clitoris and stroked it gently. She gasped and her eyes flew open.
He lifted his head and looked deep into her eyes while he continued to stroke her. He felt her give in to the sensation, saw her eyes glaze. He slipped a finger inside her, heard her suck a breath and then exhale sharply. He kissed her again, while she wrapped her fingers in his hair and lifted her hips to him as she writhed beneath him. He stroked the taut little nub, bringing her closer and closer to the edge, until she dug her nails into his skin and arched beneath him, gasping out her release.
He sucked a nipple into his mouth and laved it gently as he moved between her legs. He lifted his head and she looked up at him from beneath thick lashes, a contented smile curving her lips. He positioned himself and slid into her slowly, stopping when she gasped. He kissed her temples, inhaled the scent of her hair, and forced himself to remain still until she relaxed again. He entered her little by little, stopping when he met the barrier of her virginity.
“It’s going to hurt you,” he whispered hoarsely, “I’m sorry, but it’ll only be for a moment.”
“I know.” She kissed his lips, ran fingers over his brow.
“Hold on to me.” He pushed into her. She didn’t scream, but only gasped at the intrusion. He stilled, allowed her to adjust to him and then moved slowly until he was buried inside of her.
“Are you all right?”
“Mmmm,” she purred, “more than all right.”
“You feel so good,” he moaned as he pressed into her as far as he could go.
He moved. She moved. “Just like that,” she murmured.
He buried his face in the curve of her throat and let the sensations wash over him. He had never felt such pleasure, such absolute belonging. This was the woman of his dreams, and he was buried inside her. She stroked his back, wrapped her legs around him, then unwrapped them and slid her feet up and down his legs. The mewling sounds that escaped her throat incited him, fanned the flames of desire burning within him. He wanted to be gentle, wanted to show her the pleasure of making love, but the desire in his body, the buzzing in his brain, the hum in his bloodstream, drove him over the edge. He held her shoulders, used them for leverage and pounded into her. He battered her body, driving himself forward, mindless of everything around them, riding on the sensations that riveted him to her. He reached the edge and held. Held. Held until he heard a scream of pleasure rip from her throat, then he wrapped his arms around her, held her close to him and went over the edge with her.
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