February Check-In

Hiya!

Sorry I’ve been M.I.A. for awhile.  We had a death in the family and I’ve been a little lax in keeping up with this new blog.  But I’m back!  I promise to be more present from now on.

On the plus side, I have gotten some writing in.  I challenged myself to get in a daily session every day in January, and I did pretty well, if I do say so myself.  I got in writing on 26 days, and ended with 35k words in by the end of the month!  Usually when i get in consistant sessions, I don’t average so high.  Now my first story of 2018 (now one of two), is sitting pretty at 51k, all handwritten, and 63 pages.

I’m still not sold on the original title I’d picked out, and it looks like this first story in what I envision to be at least a trilogy, if not a longer series, is going to end up at least two books focused on the main characters i’m currently working with.  Rory and Walker have a lot to say, and to do.

Rory and Walker are my first try at werewolves.  I’ve been kicking this story around for awhile, and when I sat down and tried to flesh out the details of their story, they were very insistant that they get some pagetime, so they got to be my January project.  Now I’ve got some plotting to do in order to work out what happens before the break between book 1 and book 2 of their story.

Meanwhile, I’m also plotting out a demon-hunter story.  Arden and Kyler wanted some pagetime, too.  I blame the wonderful Karen Lynch entirely.  Again, this is an idea that I’ve been kicking around and plotting out for awhile, but they got much more fleshed out and demanding this past week.  Since Karen released the latest installment of her Relentless series, which I adore and look forward to more from.  I’ll probably always look forward to this series, even when it reaches it’s conclusion, though I sincerely hope that Fated isn’t said conclusion.  But, if it is, I’ve got to say that I found it a wonderful read and certainly very inspiring.  I had an idea regarding a creature she introduced, and viola:  the plot bunnies were abound.  Arden and Kyler definitely thank Karen and Fated for their promotion to primary focus.

For those of you who have already checked me out and enjoyed the snippet of Terra’s story in December, I promise there’s still more coming to Terra’s story.  It’s just a bigger undertaking than I’ve previously attempted.  There’s a lot more moving parts in a sci-fi universe than I realized initially.  And while the moving parts come easily enough to me in contemporary and paranormal romance stories, it’s been a bit more of a struggle with the sci-fi elements.  So, at the moment, Terra’s on hold, but i’ll be coming back to her and Dar’Rion soon enough.

And, for those of you that are still with me, here’s a snippet of Rory’s story:

 

Walker:

We step outside–Archer blinking at the sunlight almost the second he clears the door–just as Wes parks the car.  Dad steps out with a black scowl already in place.  I open my mouth, ready to ask what’s wrong, but he holds up a hand, clearly in no mood to listen.

“Walker, I acquired a passenger.  If you’d take her inside and put her up in one of the guest rooms, please?”

Though he phrases it as a question and even tacks on a ‘please’ at the end, I know it’s a command from his tone alone.  Which isn’t to say that I don’t feel the usual pull to obey my Alpha, because I do.  It’s a sharper yank than the usual tug, so I also know he’s beyond pissed off.

“A passenger?  Who?”

“Roran’s youngest.  She’s joining Greyback.”

I jolt as if he’s slapped me.  Roran Silva may be many things, but possessive is definitely one of his more major personality traits.  He’d never let one of his children defect from his pack.

“He let one of his children come with you?”

Dad snorts out a laugh utterly devoid of humor.

“Absolutely not.  But he almost broke her arm when I tried to speak to her, so I laid claim to her.  Aurora is Greyback now, and it can’t be very good for her to be sleeping in the car.”

Sleeping in the…

“She’s asleep?  It’s barely a twenty minute drive.”

“More like passed out.  Your brother had to patch her up before we left.  Her arm was fractured and both the bones in her lower leg were broken and setting incorrectly.”

So Silver Ridge is still playing the ‘females can’t be equals’ game, huh?  I shouldn’t be surprised that Roran Silva, asshole supreme, runs his pack that way.  But, usually, men like that still prize their offspring.  They see their children as extensions of themselves.

“Her brothers roughed up, too?”

Because I know all the Alphas on the continent, and their offspring, by name.  Part and parcel of my duties as the spare heir of Greyback, to keep track of the current dynasties.  Roran Silva has two sons and a daughter.  Jordan, Maddox, and Aurora.

“No.  Just her.  Which is why she couldn’t stay there.”

Just so.

“Right.  I’ll get her settled.”

My Father inclines his head, which is liable to be as much thanks as I’ll get, considering his sour mood.  Wes hops down from the driver’s seat and offers me a nod as i head to the back to retrieve our newest pack member.  Asks,

“You gettin’ Rory?”

“Yup.”

“Cool.  I’ll get her bag.  Where you gonna put her?”

“Upstairs.  She can have the room across from mine.”

For now.  That way I can keep an eye on her until she’s settled in.  Once she is, she can pick a different room if she wants.  It’s not like there aren’t plenty to spare.  Half the county has plantation-style homes, even if the land got parsed off decades ago.  My great-great-grandfather, the last Grayson Alpha before my Father, bought three homes in addition to his own, as well as the land between them.

As Wes retrieves a weathered duffel bag from the trunk, I open the back and duck inside.  The girl huddled on the seat doesn’t look very comfortable, curled into herself as she is.  Between her hands and the wild tumble of her long hair, I can’t get a good look at her face.  Just a half-glimpse of her profile.  And the shape of her mouth seems familiar. Looking her over again, I frown.

“She’s awful small.  Isn’t she almost mature?”

If I remember correctly, Aurora Silva is at least eighteen.

“Mhmmm.  Nearly nineteen.  Best not to comment on her size again.  Seems to be a bit of a sore spot for her.”

Is that so.  From what I’ve heard in the last few minutes about the reasons my Father felt compelled to liberate the little miss from Silver Ridge, and the way she’s been treated by her Father–specifically, singled out–I’d buy that being small is a sore spot.  And probably more than a bit of one.  It doesn’t matter that size varies, the majority of werewolves tend to be large.  Most wolves expect the size, of themselves and of others of our kind.  No doubt Roran Silva would consider his daughter’s size to be a failing on her part, and consider her the runt of his litter.

Contorting to reach her, I scoop up Aurora, ending up with one arm banding her waist and the other under her knees as she burrows into my hold with an unintelligible murmur.  Small fists clutch at my shirt, and the movement has the collar of her oversized shirt slipping to bare a slim shoulder.  Studiously trying not to stare at the expanse of creamy flesh that’s revealed, or the exposed column of her neck, I hold on and manuver backwards with care.  There’s plenty of she-wolves who would give me all the time of day I asked for.  I’ve no need to ogle an unconscious one who proably doesn’t want to be here.  It’s not like she was given a choice.

But, as I ease us out of the car, I have to hunch over her.  Which means I pretty much have to tuck her shoulder under my chin.  Once we’re out, and I pull back, I have an up-close and personal look at that shoulder.  Which bares a dark, mottled handprint in that awkward stage of healing where it’s an ugly kaleidoscope of greens and yellows.

In that instant, I understand exactly what caught my Father’s attention in the first place.  For a bruise like that, there’s zero chance that was an accident.  And, sure, Dad did say she’s been roughed up.  But I didn’t think I’d have to see it, firsthand.  Becker’s usually more thorough than to leave big, nasty bruises on his patients.

“Walker?”

The deferential tone, which Wes rarely breaks out for me, snaps me out of staring.  It also brings my attention around to the fact that I’m giving off a low-grade growl, the sound rumbling around dangerously in the back of my throat.

Apparently, little Aurora SIlva has the ability to get every male with the Grayson name up in arms about her safety.  Probably because she’s small enough to seem much younger than she is, and because in our pack, we don’t hold with hurting those weaker than ourselves.  If one of our females wears bruises like this, she’s been fighting challenges, or she’s gone feral and needed to be subdued.

“Are you alright?”

I don’t really have an answer to that.  Because I’m equally tempted not to ever put this little she-wolf down, and to head to Silver Ridge in order to break at least three of Roran Silva’s bones.  Plus each and every bone in his dominant hand.  But that would be just as bad as the raid last week was on us.  As in:  painful, wrong, and incuring blood prices of my own.

She’ll be safe here, and that’s all that really matters right now.

 

And that’s the scene where Walker first meets Rory.

Stayed tuned for more about Rory and Terra, and there’ll be some of Arden’s story for your reading pleasure very soon.

Until next time,

Katya

 

Advertisements

In My Mailbox

Hiya!

So, I’ve never done an in-my-mailbox post, but it’s a week before Christmas and I just can’t resist showing off my goodies. I won a paperback ARC of The V-Card by Lauren Blakely & Lili Valente a few weeks and it showed up today! Check it out:

Discovered

Hiya!

As promised, I’ll be sharing the rest of my short entitled Discovered with you here, which inspired a novella more than 10 times its length and a following novel to come.  Discovered is written in the 3rd person, which the novella is not, but this is the very beginning of Terra’s story, my first ever foray into the Sci-Fi genre, and I want to share it with you here:

 

Discovered 

Flakes fell from the sky, cold and shining, though no cloud filled the sky. 

No, the objects easing from the sky were far more substantial than the usual condensed water vapor, as were the large, hulking forms shadowing the horizon.  Larger, heavier, and completely foreign to the eyes of the crowd gathering on the streets below.  Many of whom armed with their cell phones in hand, immortalizing the phenomena in stills and in video.  Whispers travel the length of the crowd, back and forth as it grows larger, until one finally reaches Terra’s ears where she hovers under the awning of a building, 

“What are they?” 

A snort escapes before the girl can help it, earning her a dirty look from the woman who spoke.  She’s been alternately filming the strange crafts as they creep closer and watching the slow descent of the precipitation that looks to be snow on a cloudless day.  Terra, not trusting the slow glide of the metallic craft—seeming to be shaped from a medium that’s equally silver and green—or the so-called snow, looks on from her sheltered position, inches from a door.  It seems clear, to her at least, that neither of the heretofore undocumented phenomenon every lookie-loo in the city seems to have stopped to film are of this world. 

As the thought crosses her mind again, a roar builds from the opposite direction.  Most of the onlookers fail to look, but Terra twists around in time to see several sleek planes barrel towards the oncoming fleet before a large hand closes firmly on her arm, just above the elbow. 

She looks over, an automatic and undeniably caustic reprimand forming on her lips, to find a tall man at her side.  The words fall away, unspoken, as her eyes latch onto the mark that wraps around one side of his face, from his eyebrow all the way down to his jaw, melding with another on the side of his neck.  It somehow looks to be tribal, runic, and utterly alien all at once.  And, most interestingly, it seems to be comprised of miniscule scales, semi-metallic, and ever-shifting in color. 

It’s nothing human. 

“Inside, now.” 

At his sharp order and corresponding push, Terra bristles. 

Excuse me?” 

There’s a concussive sound and a flash of bright light.  He expels a string of words she’s never heard before, but that are clearly pithy, before snapping, 

“Get inside, Terra.  This is going to get very bad, very soon.” 

The use of her name startles her just enough that he manages to steer her inside as an explosive collision sounds.  A brilliant flash of green flares against the sky, and then another in vibrant red.  An odd thwump sounds in time with the red flare, just as the glass door swings shut behind them.  The sound shakes the ground, and Terra’s inhuman companion shoves her against the wall, bracing his larger body not-quite-pressed-against hers. 

Terra wriggles a bit, until she can see out the door, and stares as those shining flakes gain speed, now glowing like embers, some of them blood-red and the others noxiously green.  She witnesses as those glittering chips—much larger than she first surmised, around the size of her palm—land, seeming to gravitate straight towards the people below. 

Each geometrical flake seeks out skin, leaving long, bloody furrows before latching on like leeches, the glow growing brighter as they attach.  People claw at the strange things frantically, to no avail. 

Almost immediately, the screams start up. 

Terra jolts, turning wide eyes to her unwanted companion.  His teeth are gritted, a muscle in his jaw ticking as he observes the pandemonium breaking out on the street.  But there’s not one single iota of surprise in his expression. 

“What’s going on?” 

The mark on his face shades crimson from the outside edges inward. 

“It was an envoy.  A simple, information-gathering expedition.  But your people just shot the messengers.  And my people have the bigger guns.” 

Dozens of feet pound towards the door, but the alien in front of Terra lifts one hand and makes an odd gesture.  Once again, Terra hears a thwump, and looks over to see the door handles—glowing with an electric blue light—melding together and effectively barricading entry to all others.  With a silent gasp, she looks back to him, gaping.  When she dredges up her words, she demands, 

“What are you doing?” 

He flicks his dark gaze to her ever-so-briefly, and then directs his attention back to the door. 

“Blocking off the door.” 

“But…” 

He flicks another glance her way, pinpoints of neon green swirling in his dark irises. 

“Terra, if they come in here, they’ll be followed.  And you, little human, even with your bizarre psychic signature, won’t be spared.” 

Her mouth falls open again. 

“You…you’re…protecting me?” 

A short nod.  He grunts, 

“Trying to.” 

When she simply stares at him again, mouth hanging open, he sighs and tacks on, 

“You’re awfully obstinate.  Especially for a human.” 

“But…why?” 

The door handles settle with an audible thunk, he returns his hand to the wall beside her head, and turns his full attention back to her. 

“Your brain…it’s wired differently than the average human.  I was intrigued.” 

“You…what?” 

His brows draw into a sharp vee.  Slowly, he tries again, clearly searching for the exact, correct words. 

“Your mind, it doesn’t word like most human’s minds.  I could sense it.  You’re…more like us.” 

“But…but I’m not one of you!” 

His lips thin out and he flinches at her shrill shout. 

“Better not say that too loud, Terra.  Your world just declared war on a peaceful envoy, cataloguing the J-class worlds.  And the civilized universe takes a pretty dim view of shooting the messenger.” 

She takes a turn to flinch, shrinking back against the wall. 

I didn’t do anything.” 

A grimace pulls at his mouth. 

“Doesn’t matter.  Worlds that lead with violence are categorized as primitive and quarantined.  All occupants are tagged and monitored.  Are you coming with me, or are you staying to be included in the zoo?” 

She hesitates, and he sighs.  Eases back a couple of steps and holds out a hand with an expectant look.  The mark on his face phases to sky-blue, slowly darkening to near-black as the seconds pass in silence. 

“Terra?” 

Beings averaging about seven-feet-tall, with faintly scaled, green-tinged skin and not-quite-stagnant marks like her savior’s appear in the street, herding the humans into a closely-contained space.  Watching for a minute more, Terra lays her hand in his and says, 

“I’ll go with you.” 

A slow grin spreads over his face as he pulls her back into his personal space.  Fingering a device on his wrist, he barks out a guttural word in his alien tongue. 

And before the last syllable fades away, the world shifts beneath Terra’s feet. 

 

And that’s it, folks!  Short but sweet.  Stay tuned for more about Terra, and my other works and characters!

Until next time,

Katya

Introductions

Hiya!

To all followers and visitors, I want to wish a warm welcome to Katya Rath’s Musings!

I’m Katya, but to my friends, I go by Kate.  This blog is dedicated to my various works of fiction, which I hope to publish some day.  Hopefully some day soon.  Some of you may know me from my review blog:  http://katyarath.wordpress.com

Those of you who don’t, I’m going to tell you the same thing I told my loyal followers earlier:

So a little about me first: I’m Kate, and I’m 25. Been writing for as long as I can remember because my Mother instilled in me a fierce love for the written word, and my oldest surviving draft of anything I wrote myself–borrowing more than liberally from the favorite book series of my younger self–is 20 years old, and I only have it because it made my school newsletter and my Gramma saved it for me. The oldest story that’s wholly mine didn’t come along until I was 10. I cringe every time I look at the draft (my handwriting was atrocious 15 years ago), but even then there were certain patterns of plot I gravitated towards.

See, for me, a book is always better when it involves a love story. I hold true to that, both when I’m reading and when I’m writing. I also doesn’t box myself down to a single genre. Contemporary romance, historical romance, paranormal romance, urban fantasy, high fantasy, Sci-fi…I’ve tried my hand at them all. Admittedly, I find historical romance and high fantasy a little harder than the other genres I’ve worked on, because I work from inside my character’s heads. In other words, I tend to write in the first person, present tense, even when I meant to write in a different format. I also have picked up the pattern found in YA and NA lately, to alternate point-of-view between my main characters, to add further dimension to the story I’m giving to my readers.

This past June, I completed my first full draft of a novel, reaching the end of a book, though not the end of the story, because about two-thirds, maybe three-quarters of the way through that novel, I realized that Lexy and Gabriel’s story was NOT a single book, but a duet or a trilogy. So I finished The Dragos Daughter and immediately started on the sequel, tentatively titled: A Kenyon Witch. But this semester in my creative writing class, I started on something completely new for me.

We were discussing an assignment on narrative structure, and my Professor used the example of one of my classmate’s poems and compared it to a song. Both discussed an astronaut, and their journey. And, while I was listening to the discussion, the idea for a story involving aliens came to me. I had never written a Sci-Fi before October, but I wrote the short for class and fell in love with the idea, with the character that I created for it: Terra, and with her story.

So, when the time came to start putting together a final project for class, I immediately thought of Terra, and of everything else she had to say, to experience. And I ran with it. My result is a 16k novella that sets up the rest of Terra’s story, which I wrote the first couple chapters of over this past weekend. I’m truly excited to see where Terra’s journey goes and to share it.

And to that end, here’s the beginning of that first pass at Terra’s story, entitled Discovered at the time:

 

Flakes fell from the sky, cold and shining, though no cloud filled the sky.

No, the objects easing from the sky were far more substantial than the usual condensed water vapor, as were the large, hulking forms shadowing the horizon. Larger, heavier, and completely foreign to the eyes of the crowd gathering on the streets below. Many of whom armed with their cell phones in hand, immortalizing the phenomena in stills and in video. Whispers travel the length of the crowd, back and forth as it grows larger, until one finally reaches Terra’s ears where she hovers under the awning of a building,

“What are they?”

A snort escapes before the girl can help it, earning her a dirty look from the woman who spoke. She’s been alternately filming the strange crafts as they creep closer and watching the slow descent of the precipitation that looks to be snow on a cloudless day. Terra, not trusting the slow glide of the metallic craft—seeming to be shaped from a medium that’s equally silver and green—or the so-called snow, looks on from her sheltered position, inches from a door. It seems clear, to her at least, that neither of the heretofore undocumented phenomenon every lookie-loo in the city seems to have stopped to film are of this world.

As the thought crosses her mind again, a roar builds from the opposite direction. Most of the onlookers fail to look, but Terra twists around in time to see several sleek planes barrel towards the oncoming fleet before a large hand closes firmly on her arm, just above the elbow.

She looks over, an automatic and undeniably caustic reprimand forming on her lips, to find a tall man at her side. The words fall away, unspoken, as her eyes latch onto the mark that wraps around one side of his face, from his eyebrow all the way down to his jaw, melding with another on the side of his neck. It somehow looks to be tribal, runic, and utterly alien all at once. And, most interestingly, it seems to be comprised of miniscule scales, semi-metallic, and ever-shifting in color.

It’s nothing human.

 

Now, this is just a sneak preview of the short that inspired the novella.  Hopefully, it’s intrigued you, even if you just want to see what happens next.  Have no fear, I’ll be posting the rest of this short later today for your reading pleasure.  And in the future, I’ll probably share some snippets of the continuation of Terra’s story, whether it comes from the prequel novella, or from the novel that I’ve just started working on.  Not to mention the numerous other projects I have, either in progress or in the conception stages.

I look forward to sharing more of my stories and characters with you, and updating you on my journey as a writer.

Until next time,

Katya