Friday, January 31, 2014

The Inkstained Ninja Strikes! : Dominant Tendencies

So, in about two months, Inkstained Succubus will release Dominant Tendencies, our genre M/M BDSM anthology. Speaking as a 10 year veteran of the lifestyle, this has been my pleasure. So, it behooves me to leak you a bit of teaser treasure for your kinky pleasure.

Our stories are as follows:

What He Brought Home by T.C. Mill
Genre: Sci-Fi
Synopsis: Kanovan’s work takes him across the galaxy, but he always returns to his husband, Mirin. Sometimes he brings gifts with him.
“I brought you something,” he whispered in Mirin’s ear, in between pressing kisses along the curve and lobe.

“Really? What?”

He stopped nibbling the corner of his husband’s jaw long enough to look at the case he’d left on the table. Mirin wrapped an arm around Kanovan’s waist and swung him back, out of the way, so that it was easy to beat him to it. Laughing, Mirin could feel the weight of ‘Van’s gaze along the backs of his hands as he unlatched the clasps and raised the lid. He ran a fingertip teasingly over the black coils inside.

Then Kanovan was at his side, drawing something from his vest pocket.

A guitar pick, Mirin thought at first—but it was larger, filling his palm, and thicker, and the edge along the point glistened as he turned it in his hands with the gleam of circuitry endings.

“I’m not sure I understand…” He pushed his other hand through the cords in the box—silken and soft, but with a wiry core. Yielding, but not too far. He grinned. “I’d welcome an explanation, though.”

“Come to bed.”

“I expected I would, sooner or later.” 

 Sacrifice by Gabriel Belthir
Genre: Fantasy
Synopsis: Ta’kari lost everything and found himself the last Tausho warrior of his people. Offered up as a sacrifice to a pagan goddess, he has one last chance – to defeat Mattieus, the legendary general, in combat. The results may change not only their lives, but the Acarshan Empire as well.
 Excerpt: Ta’kari, gasping for breath, rubbed his neck. Matteius had never shown such brutality, and it stoked a fire in him. “He can’t kill you. You’re a hero. And I, apparently, belong to you,” He said, more quietly.

Matteius sat back down at the little table and picked the whip and the tiny picks back up. “That’s the problem. I have many who listen to me. I’ve grown popular. A hero he couldn’t send out to war. With a few words, I could draw everyone’s attention to how young he is. How foolish he was for making enemies of Caleran and its allies. I don’t talk, so when I do…” He wrenched the piece of offending metal out of its setting. “People listen.”

“So why don’t you?” Ta’kari slid back onto his knees, practicing his stances again.

“The minute I did, my life would be over. The King has his own secrets. Magic-users, they say, though nobody believes that. But certainly assassins of the highest kind.” Matteius looked up from shaving down a new piece of metal and smiled. “There you go. That’s much better. As long as you’re not thinking too hard, you pull it off nicely. Head tipped back, ready for a dick or a slap or a kiss.” He nodded.

Ta’kari had gotten good at hiding his blushes from Matteius. He took a breath and finally asked something that had been bothering him. “Are you a lover of men, Matteius?”

 Debts and Credits by Sian Hart
Genre: Cyberpunk Fantasy
Synopsis: In the Metropolis, life is hard. And once you owe more than your life is worth, you belong to someone else. Those that hit bottom become the property…of the Djinn.
Daelyn's heart fell. He hadn't known the latest bet had fallen through. There were only two ways to fail at life in this city – to die, or to owe more money than your natural life was worth. He hadn't thought he was close to his limit. He'd sent the payments, hadn't he? His breath came fast, only to be interrupted by a sharp click as cold metal closed around his throat. 

“That's a debtor's collar, dear. You're to report to this address at 9 a.m. sharp tomorrow morning. Should you be so much as five minutes late, the collar will shrink to half its current diameter. I understand it makes your head pop like a grape.”  Her smile as she described his possible fate was the most disconcerting one of the evening, even wider than the troll breed’s and strangely giddy.  

Eventually her dress returned to the contented blue color she'd had when he got in. “Have a good night, get your affairs in order, and we'll see you bright and early tomorrow morning to discuss payment options.” 

The goons ejected him from the van with the same fervor as they'd had getting him into it. Daelyn lay there with a face full of duracrete and contemplated his lot in life. Once you were under a debtor's collar, you were pretty much done. Someone owned him. It was over.

 Riding the Edge by Angelia Sparrow and Naomi Brooks
Genre: Paranormal
Synopsis: The combat mage’s first ride with his unit is always difficult. The blood, the magic, and the adrenaline build a need for release. Cody’s the new boy on the block, and Antoine’s not sure what to make of the upstart…until he decides to take him home to blow off some steam.
The kid seemed to breathe easier at that. “You're Antoine, right? I'm Cody.”

Antoine gave him a half smile. “I don't usually learn the new brothers' names until they've been with us for three months.”

Cody barked a little laugh at that. “Yeah, that's what Wilson said. You don't have a girl?”

Antoine just looked at him. “Boy, you know better.”

Cody nodded and ran one hand through his sweaty brown hair. “We the only ones?” he asked and Antoine heard something a little calmer in his voice. He had Cody's measure now. Little boy had been bossed around all his life, and now he needed one more person to tell him what to do.

“Eh, most of them will go for a bj if there's no other option, but they mostly like girls.” Antoine looked Cody over, making sure the kid saw him do it. He reached over and gripped Cody's shoulder. “Right now, boy, I have a powerful need and you're going to fix it for me.”

Cody tensed and Antoine could almost see the hot retort on the end of his tongue. Then he relaxed under Antoine's hand. “Anything you like, Mr. Vice-President, sir.” He picked up both his full beer and Antoine's half-finished one. “I'll clean up and you can tell me exactly what a president of vice does.”

“Smart mouth.” Antoine hid his smile and let him wash out the mugs. “Get your helmet. We're going to my place. You're riding bitch.” 

The Errant Son by G.C. Mika
Genre: Paranormal Fantasy
Synopsis: Brendan Kuvasir was put away for political reasons, sold into slavery to avoid scandal. Of all the people in the world, his first time on the block finds him owned by Andre Lareaux, whose family has much to gain from his humiliation. Both sons of powerful noble families, upon them shifts the destiny of the clans of both Staspira and Alluriel.

His boy tensed under that touch. He looked up. “’re not supposed to be nice to me, are you?” The question was blatant and simple, bound in innocence, and it broke Andre’s heart just slightly.

“My mother...has her opinons of what qualities make a model slave and what methods best bring out those qualities. Kind words and soft touches are not generally a part of that prescription.” Andre ran a hand down Brendan’s cheek. “Though I find myself lacking, generally, in anything to punish you for.” He took a breath and sighed. “I am out of time, Boy. She will expect you opened by this afternoon.I’ve given you as long as I can to yourself. Now, speak plainly. Do you welcome this?”

He watched as Brendan’s face turned a pleasant shade of pink. He did blush easily. “You’ve been driving me insane, Master. Waiting until twenty-two at the academy was torture enough.” He made a surprised face and covered his mouth with a hand, embarrassed. 

That startled a laugh out of Andre, and he smiled at the chagrin across Brendan’s face. Without pausing to think, he tilted his chin up with two fingers and ran a thumb over his lips. The delicious shiver that rewarded him made him smile. With only a few touches, he directed Brendan up and into his lap. “Then...I will make it beautiful for you.” One of Andre’s hands fisted the boy’s hair. “It’s the least I can do.”

  So! Those are the leaks I can smuggle out of the airship for the day. Give us your feedback. There’ll be pre-orders for Dominant Tendencies on March 1st.

 *Turns and hears shouting behind him.* Gotta run! Find more excerpts any time the ninja visits.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Talking on the homophone

So let's talk homophones.
No, this is not Sir Ian McKellan's cellular, but words that sound alike.
There are homophones, homonyms and homographs.

Homonyms are words with many meanings:
Spruce tree/spruce the place up, suit of cards, suit of clothes, that kind of thing.

Homographs are when the same word has a different sound and meaning.
Don't desert me in the desert.
She was present in the present position.
I had a long argument about this one with a co-author, until I realized he was reading present position--which is Pre-zent, like "present arms"-- as prez-ent, meaning she was just there.

But as an editor, I find it's the homophones and near-homophones that trip people up the most.

"He walked threw the woods and through the gun in the lake." That's a composite, but a fair representation of two sentences in one book I edited.

"That's beyond the pail."
I read that in a story once and went "it's past the bucket?" Because a paling is a sharp stick, and a bunch of palings make a pale, a fence on which to impale your enemies. Anything outside the fence is an enemy and hence "beyond the pale."


A note here about passed and past. They are not the same word. They do not even sound alike (at least to my Missouri ear). Yet, I've worked with writers from Montana to Memphis who substitute one for the other.

Past is about location.  It can be an adjective: "past recipient of the award" or a noun, "put your behind in the past," and adverb "It flew past me." or a preposition, "the cat went past the sign." (a preposition is anywhere a cat can go)

Passed is a past-tense verb. "The days passed." "He passed on." "She passed me the potatoes."
An easy way to check, is to change the tense. "The days passed." becomes "The days are passing."  This tells you it's a verb. "The days went past." Here, past modifies the verb "went."

And by the way, if you call the airship, our aertheric line is now called the Homo-phone. Because we can.

Until next week, ducks, this has been a public service message from your line editor!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Cyberpunk, Werewolves and Birthdays, Oh My!

First: a Very Happy Birthday to Inkstained Succubus author, Naomi Brooks!

Naomi has been a part of the Inkstained crew from the very beginning, when we re-issued a number of short stories in Into Dark Waters

This collection has a lot of earlier work, from the sexy naga and djinn of "Serpents" to Commander Cliff Cody, of the Space Exploration Rangers to the Devil himself, Professor L. Morganstern, and his very special classes at the Scholomance.

Today is also our first Release Day of 2014!
Or, it was meant to be. There were problems in the Ferret Delivery System and the Quartermaster has been assigned to retrain the beasties.

Both of the items are available through the website, although delivery of ordered items will be tomorrow.
Paperback (of Fated Bonds) and Kindle coming very soon.

Peter Tupper's lesbian cyberpunk short, "An Angel Has No Memory," comes out today.

In a world where people known as Assets can be programmed with any set of skills or personality, Rose works in the high pressure job of programmer while dealing with the corporate hierarchy and trying to deny her desire for another woman. As the pressures and secrets pile up, Rose seeks relief in fantasies of being a helpless, memory-less Asset, but fears showing her desire to anyone else. A co-worker helps her overcome her fear and shame to take charge of both her work and her sexuality.
Notice: Explicit sexual situations, F/F romance.

Angel's note: I really like this story. It's creepy, and sexy, and very dark.

Our second release is the paranormal romance novel, Fated Bonds.

Tala Neil sets out to be nothing more than an excellent cop, but she can't escape her Mage lineage. When she meets Alexander Kygnios, a Lycan Guardian, her life takes an unexpected turn. Buried secrets are discovered, sparking hope for a life she never thought to have, but she must fight an old enemy and even older laws to protect those she loves.Price includes shipping and handling.

Notice: Explicit M/F and M/M sexual situations, romance, and scenes of violence.

Angel's note: This one goes beyond the ordinary paranormal romance and takes us into the life of a sharp-tongued, sharp-witted cop, who is not willing to build her life around a man, no matter how much she loves him.

Check them out! And look for upcoming blog tour posts from Peter and HC.