Sonya Clark's Blog, page 8

September 9, 2013

It's less than two months before Trancehack is released into the wild, and it's time for me to stop pretending my only job is to write the next book. Yes, that's right, it's time to get some promo lined up. I have a long list of blogs to query and I've already started, including one really big one that just kind of fell from the sky. *crosses fingers*

Now for the part where I ask you, dear reader, if you'd like to help spread the word about Trancehack. The book will be released on October 28, so I'm looking for dates after that through around Thanksgiving. Well, after that I will still be looking for places to play host, but I hope to do most of this in that first month. I'm happy to do guest posts, for which I already have a number of topics. Interviews would be awesome. I will also have a press kit prepared, with the back cover copy, a release announcing the book, and a brief bio, along with the cover art and an excerpt if that kind of thing is how you roll. There will be at least two giveaways: one will be here, for advance copies before release day, and one the details of which will be determined closer to release that will likely involve more copies and, oh, I don't know, my everlasting love and devotion. I'll figure it out.

So if you think you'd be interested in hosting me and Trancehack, please drop me a line at sonya @ Here's more on the awesome book you'd be helping promote ->

It’s 2065. Those born with magic abilities live in government-run zones, without rights or freedoms. Fear of magic created this segregated world and fear keeps it intact.  

A high-profile murder brings Detective Nathan Perez to Magic Born Zone 13. He’s had little experience with the Magic Born and isn’t sure what to expect during his first encounter with a witch, but he never thought he’d be so drawn to her.  

Trancehacker Calla Vesper uses magic to break into computers and aid the Magic Born underground. She has no interest in helping a cop, even if he is smoking-hot, but money’s tight and Nate offers a tidy amount for help navigating the Zone. Calla’s determined to keep it all business, but sparks start flying before the investigation even gets started.  

When Calla’s trancehacking and Nathan’s investigation uncover a conspiracy, Calla becomes a target. Nate can protect her by keeping her role a secret—but then who will protect Nate?

And because I know what you're really here for, here's a pic of my fantabulous personal assistant ->

My personal assistant, hard at play.

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Published on September 09, 2013 09:09 • 67 views

August 26, 2013

To say it's been a crazy summer is putting it mildly. In June, the third book in the Mojo series got a contract from Lyrical Press. In July, my proposals for books two and three of the Magic Born series were accepted by Carina Press. And in August, I was invited to turn my old online serial The Bradbury Institute into a series for Entranced Publishing with a three-book deal.

I sold six books in three months.


Which I'm fine with, by the way, because it's pretty sweet to have happened at all. And shocking. Believe me, no one is more surprised than me that all these publishers keep giving me contracts. I'm very grateful, and very hopeful that readers will find something to like in all these books too.

Right now I'm working on Witchlight, the second Magic Born book. I've completed edits on a short story coming out in an anthology later this year, and I've done the first round of edits on Hoodoo Woman, the third Mojo book. I think I'll be getting the first round of edits on the first Bradbury novella sometime in September. And I'll be gearing up for the release of Trancehack, the first in the Magic Born series, in late October. So, busy. Very busy.

This is why the blog isn't much of a blog anymore. For the time being, my plan is to keep the various pages updated and go to a newsletter for announcements, cover reveals, and exclusive excerpts. The newsletter will be the first place to see these things, and the only place for the occasional work-in-progress excerpt. I'll send one out once a month at the most, maybe not even that often. You can subscribe at this link . I should have a cover for Trancehack very soon! If you want to be one of the first to see it, subscribe to my newsletter. :)

Now for the latest on my personal assistant. This pic pretty much sums up how she's doing these days -

Little Miss Sassypants!

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Published on August 26, 2013 06:00 • 61 views

July 18, 2013

I've got some great news to share this month. TRANCEHACK will be the first of a series! Carina Press accepted my two-book proposal and I am currently hard at work on Book Two. I'll be turning it in about a month after TRANCEHACK is released (which is October 28), then I'll get to work on Book Three. I'm really excited about this because a trilogy will allow me to take the story of this world to the conclusion I want, featuring three fantastic couples who fight to bring about change.

This makes three books I've sold this summer, two of them by proposal. That's a big new step for me. While I've gotten much better at outlining, I still do a fair amount of writing by the seat of my pants. I thought it was challenge enough to prepare a synopsis for a book I'd already written, but for books I hadn't written?! It's a whole new ballgame. Now I have to write the books and hopefully not deviate from the submitted proposal too much.

Book Two now has a working title - WITCHLIGHT. I don't know if they'll want to keep it. TRANCEHACK was originally called Freaktown, which I now think of as the series title (though an official series title is something that will have to be worked out now too.) WITCHLIGHT is just shy of the halfway mark right now.

This week I'm also working on edits for my short story MUSICMAGE that will be featured in the DARK HARVEST anthology from Dark Continents Publishing. I'll have more on that as info comes available.

And of course I still plan to finish the Mojo series, hopefully adding two more books to it. HOODOO WOMAN is on track for release in May of next year.

Now for an update on my personal assistant, who is also making big new steps. Last week she turned a year old! I can't believe my baby girl is getting so big. This week she took her first steps. I wouldn't say she's walking yet, it was only a few steps and so far she hasn't seemed inclined to do it again, but she's definitely on her way.

My personal assistant on her first birthday.

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Published on July 18, 2013 18:22 • 48 views

June 8, 2013

All kinds of awesome news in this month's News Post! First up: a new contract.

I'm thrilled to announce that Lyrical Press has contracted HOODOO WOMAN, the third book in the Mojo series! I'm really excited about this book. It definitely takes some chances with the series arc but I love it. Here's my unofficial description:

Storm magic - wild, unpredictable, and guaranteed to turn the world upside down. Roxie Mathis is stronger than ever now that she's learned to call thunder and lightning and she's rebuilding her life. But her lover Blake doesn't trust her new supernatural assistant or the untamed magic she now practices. Roxie will have to decide between making him happy or being true to herself. 

To complicate things further, her old love Ray Travis asks her to come home. A dead girl is haunting the entire town and the only way to bring the spirit to peace is to solve her murder. With her vampire ancestor along for the ride, Roxie bites the bullet and decides to face her past. Caught in a web of secrets and magic, going home could kill Roxie - or set her free.

My next bit of awesome news is that I've joined a terrific group blog called Here Be Magic. My debut post is part of their Urban Fantasy Week. I'm thrilled to be part of the blog. With so many members, I think I'll only be posting about every couple of months. Such a light blogging schedule meets the approval of my personal assistant. ;) Please check out Here Be Magic, and you can also follow the group on Twitter and Facebook.

And of course I'm eagerly awaiting the release of TRANCEHACK, coming from Carina Press in the fall. Hopefully in the next month or so I'll have cover art to share!

In the meantime, here's my personal assistant showing off her teefies. :) 

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Published on June 08, 2013 07:00 • 44 views

May 28, 2013

You might have noticed that content on the blog has been pretty sparse for a while now. For months I've been trying to keep it going, but the truth is I just don't have time anymore. With a baby to take care of, books to write, plus a husband and housework and just general life stuff…I don't have the time to keep posting anything more than news and announcements here. So I'm trying to make this space operate a bit more like a website, with the home page featuring any news. I'm also going to make an effort to post on my Facebook page more often to make up for the lack of content here. Music videos of songs that help me write, info about what I'm reading lately, stuff from my publishers and fellow authors that I think folks might find interesting, and maybe the occasional work in  progress excerpt. Not constantly, though, maybe once a day or every other day. That page feeds into Twitter , which is where I'll likely be posting the most from.

Don't get me wrong, I'm probably going to miss blogging. It's been a lot of fun and I've gotten a lot out of it, but with all the time pressures I have now, microblogging platforms like Twitter and Facebook are so much easier. I'm leaving old posts up because I see no reason to take them down, and who knows - maybe when I have more time I'll return to regular blogging. Until then, thank you for reading! Please keep me in your reader for news and updates (there will be news soon!) and do follow me on Facebook and Twitter .

My personal assistant, who keeps me busy.

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Published on May 28, 2013 13:24 • 43 views

May 13, 2013

This weekend I started reading a terrific series called Tales of the Underlight by Jax Garren . The first book, HOW BEAUTY MET THE BEAST, got me hooked. Book two, HOW BEAUTY SAVED THE BEAST, is waiting for me on my Kindle. And - squee! - book three, HOW BEAUTY LOVED THE BEAST, releases today! Check out this fab series, you won't be disappointed!

Carina Press - Kindle - Nook

The Beast

Scarred. Damaged. Living with a terrible secret. Agent of the Underlight Wesley "Hauk" Haukon has nothing left but the fight for liberty against the oppressive Order of Ananke. He's starting to lose hope...and then he sees her.

The Beauty

Despite her night job as a burlesque dancer, grad student Jolie Benoit has always played the mostly good girl. That all changes following a scorching sexual encounter with a stranger whose face she doesn't see. After she's kidnapped by thugs and rescued by a man with a very familiar voice, Jolie becomes a pawn in a struggle she never knew existed.

Hauk knows he cannot have her, and resolves to protect his heart and his secrets. But as they work together and grow closer, he finds new reason to keep fighting. Dare he risk hope in a new life, one where Jolie can see past his ravaged face and where their friendship can grow into something more?

Carina Press - Kindle - Nook

Jolie Benoit left her old life behind to become an agent of the Underlight. Training under Sergeant Wesley Haukon, she's honing her combat skills, all the while coping with the intense sexual attraction she feels for Hauk. She keeps their friendship casual, but when his high school sweetheart transfers into their division, Jolie finds herself grappling with jealousy.

The Underlight gave Hauk a purpose, but he can't escape his past completely. The physical and emotional scars from the fire that killed seven fellow Army Rangers will mark him forever. Jolie sends his protective instincts into overdrive, but he's convinced he'll never be worthy of her love.

Hauk is determined to keep Jolie from harm. But when the Order of Ananke ambushes them with a new weapon that neutralizes Hauk, making him vulnerable, it's Jolie who must tap into her hidden strengths to rescue him--or risk losing him forever...

Carina Press - Kindle - Nook

It's all been leading to this.

Jolie Benoit has become a skilled agent of the Underlight, relying on her savvy to complete assignments while Sergeant Wesley Haukon was out of commission. But an unexpected clue to the Order of Ananke's diabolical scheme rattles Jolie, and she turns to Hauk for comfort.

It's been years since Hauk took comfort from the touch of another person, though his love for Jolie is deep and powerful. Uncomfortable in his skin, scarred by a terrible fire, he is unable to give in to the pleasures that Jolie so desperately wants to grant him.

Meanwhile, the Order is lurking in the shadows--and when they strike, the blow is swift and terrible. Hauk and Jolie scramble to fight for their community, but with the future of the Underlight threatened, no one is safe. And Hauk will never be the same...

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Published on May 13, 2013 06:00 • 66 views

May 7, 2013

For this month's news I've got the official back cover copy description of TRANCEHACK.

It’s 2065. Those born with magic abilities live in government-run zones, without rights or freedoms. Fear of magic created this segregated world and fear keeps it intact.  

A high-profile murder brings Detective Nathan Perez to Magic Born Zone 13. He’s had little experience with the Magic Born and isn’t sure what to expect during his first encounter with a witch, but he never thought he’d be so drawn to her.  

Trancehacker Calla Vesper uses magic to break into computers and aid the Magic Born underground. She has no interest in helping a cop, even if he is smoking-hot, but money’s tight and Nate offers a tidy amount for help navigating the Zone. Calla’s determined to keep it all business, but sparks start flying before the investigation even gets started.  

When Calla’s trancehacking and Nathan’s investigation uncover a conspiracy, Calla becomes a target. Nate can protect her by keeping her role a secret—but then who will protect Nate?

The final word count comes in at 89,000 words, making it my longest work yet to be published. I should get cover art sometime this summer, with the book being released in the fall.


That's all I've got. Since finishing HOODOO WOMAN I've been taking a much needed break from writing every day. There's a couple of things I'm working on a little bit, but I don't want to talk about them since I'm not sure if they'll go anywhere. Mostly I've been hanging out with the baby, teaching her classic rock, one episode of Supernatural at a time.

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Published on May 07, 2013 06:00 • 40 views

April 25, 2013


Bring On The Night was the second book I finished. I'd written a novel - a long, meandering, hundred thousand word unpublishable novel. I knew that first book had too many issues to count and I wanted to see if I could write something with a straightforward plot, plenty of action, and no excess filler. Plus I wanted to write urban fantasy. So I came up with the idea for Bring On The Night and hit my goals with it. At just under thirty thousand words, I didn't know if there was anything I could do with it. Digital small press was new to me but it seemed like a good avenue to pursue, if I could manage to get the manuscript accepted.

Nerine Dorman was still at Lyrical Press at the time and she acquired the novella. Reading it over now, I don't know what she saw in it that made her want it, but I'm eternally grateful she took it (and me) on. I've seen quite a few authors say that writing was just something they thought they'd try their hand at. That's great, especially when it turns into success. But writing has never been that way for me. Writing books, being a published author - this has been my dream since I was thirteen years old. When I got the email from Lyrical Press publisher Renee Rocco in November of 2009 telling me they wanted to publish Bring On The Night, it was a dream come true. There were a lot of happy tears and staring at the screen in shock, wondering if this was real and expecting them to change their minds at any moment. Sometimes I still can't believe I'm a published author.

Bring On The Night changed my life. Since then I've continued to write, and thankfully publish. This is a hard business to be in. Little money, little respect, and lots of stuff I never counted on when I set out to be a writer. (coughohgodsocialmediacough) But the truth is, I love it. I love writing and publishing. I've even grown to love Twitter, even though I don't have as much time for it now that I have a baby.

If you're wondering why I'm getting all nostalgic about BOTN, well, here's the thing. Digital books have a contract, which means they do in fact have a shelf life. For this book, it's three years. I could have renewed the contract but I decided not to for some very specific reasons. This book is an oddball - a standalone urban fantasy novella with no romance. I have no plans to write more in this world, with these characters. If I did, it would be good to keep BOTN out there. But this is it, so I decided to not renew the contract. Retailers Amazon and Barnes and Noble have already removed it. The only place it's still available - I think - is the Lyrical site. As of May 17, the rights will revert to me. I don't know what I'll do with it. Probably nothing for now. Like I said, it's an oddball and I doubt I'll ever return to those characters. I don't have the means to self-publish it right now, or the time and energy to put into that. But who knows, later on when I do have the time I might find a way to put Bring On The Night back out there.

So it's going "out of print" so to speak. I'm a bit verklempt. Thank you to Lyrical Press, Renee Rocco, and Nerine Dorman for giving me the chance of a lifetime. I don't know what the publisher and editor side of this business is like, but ladies, when you find yourself having a bad day, remember you're making people's dreams come true. That's an extraordinary thing to do. Thank you!

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Published on April 25, 2013 06:49 • 45 views

April 19, 2013

The demon was headed for us at a pretty good clip. We could probably escape by driving away, but what about the next time someone came out here to commune with Robert Johnson? This thing had itself a pretty good gig, preying on people who came here to pay homage to the bluesman, casting a spell on them with music, taking them by force if it had to. Yeah, we might escape, but the thing needed killing. If a tire iron wouldn’t do it and fire wouldn’t do it, what would?

My gaze fell on the guitar, left lying where the creature had first fallen from the tire iron in its chest. It used music to cast its spell, so …

“Can you distract it? Keep it away from the guitar?”

“You think that’s where it’s power is?”

I shrugged. “It’s the only idea I got.” I reached into my bag.

The thing was just a few feet away. Daniel never answered me, just threw himself at the creature again. They grappled and fought, Daniel leading it away from me. I ran for the guitar.

From my bag I pulled the last bottle of graveyard dirt and a plastic sandwich bag with a knobby root inside. I poured the dirt over the guitar. Crushed the root with my hand over my knee as best I could, then poured that over the guitar. Then I started stomping, breaking the guitar into pieces. I heard another unearthly shriek from the creature and turned so I could see it. Every time my feet broke another bit of that guitar, it took more out of the creature, literally. It was losing its corporeal form, bit by bit, body melting into the smudgy gray haze it came from. The guitar was not disappearing, though. I had shards of wood all around my feet, strings and frets and tuning keys. I kept smashing until the haze melted into nothing.

Daniel came over to me, took a look at the guitar parts and said, “Should we burn that?”

“Wouldn’t hurt.”

“What’d you use?”

“Graveyard dirt and angelica root. Protection and banishment. So I’m gonna have to get more dirt from Robert’s grave.”

He shook his head. “You go do that. I’ll take care of this.”

The spirit was finally gone this time. We were back on the road in half an hour, with the windows rolled down to help with the stink and me wrapped in the blanket from the emergency kit he kept in the back.

“I have never wanted a shower more in my life,” I said.

He chuckled. “All in a night’s work, huh?”

Skip James flooded out of the stereo, Devil Got My Woman. All of a sudden I felt damn tired of all this existential blues crap and wanted badly to hear something else. God help me, even some of Daniel’s country.

“Hey, you wanna play something else?”

He grinned. “Hell yes.” He replaced the CD with another from the sleeve attached to his visor.

A perky, driving rhythm filled the vehicle. He cranked up the volume and sang along, his voice somehow managing to give a punk edge to Dolly Parton’s Nine to Five. I went from appalled to amused over the space of about three seconds, then gave in. I mean, you’d have to have been living under a rock to not know at least the chorus.

<- Part 7

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Published on April 19, 2013 08:38 • 36 views

April 12, 2013

The spell broken, I stumbled backward. The thing grabbed at me with one bony claw of a hand. My head felt full of sludge and I couldn’t make my muscles follow orders. Another volley of rock salt hit the thing and it screamed again. Some part of my brain realized it was Daniel tossing around the salt and that I needed to get as far away from this thing as possible. My feet felt weighted down, trapped in something thick and heavy that didn’t want to let go. The thing reached for me again and this time it caught me, its claw-hand gripping my upper arm so tight I cried out.

I fell to my knees, trying to wrench myself away from the monster. Flailing, I twisted my arm out of its grip and fell away from it. It stood over me, red eyes burning and crying ichor. Still holding the guitar, it reached with its other hand for me. I scooted backward, its claws grazing my pants leg. Something flew over my head and the thing screamed again, the sound a mix of agony and rage. The SUV’s tire iron impaled it through the chest, thick black blood exploding out of its body and spattering all over me. The thing fell to the ground as a pair of hands yanked me away from it.

Daniel hauled me to my feet, holding onto me when I almost fell again. The monster or demon, whatever it was, flopped and screamed, crawling closer and grabbing for me again. Daniel and I retreated until it finally lay still and silent.

For a long moment all I could hear was the sound of my own breathing, heavy with the adrenaline dump. Finally I could speak again. “What the hell was that?”

“I don’t know,” Daniel sighed. “Not Robert Johnson, that’s for sure.”

“Some kind of spirit trying to trap people. That spell … did you hear it? Could you hear the music?”

“Yeah, I heard it, but I don’t think it wanted me, Roxie.”

I felt something slide from my hairline down my forehead. I looked down at myself, horrified. “Oh damn this is so nasty!” I tore my coat off, folding it so I could use the still clean inside to wipe off my face and jeans.

“Don’t smell too good, either,” Daniel said, giving me a look that said he didn’t relish the drive back to Clarksdale with me covered in evil spirit slime.

I didn’t get a chance to retort because the thing rose from the ground. It pulled the tire iron from its chest, sending more nasty slime running down its front, the stench hitting the cold air hard. Daniel jumped in front of me, one hand pushing me back toward the vehicle. The thing rushed him and I ran.

The back end of the SUV was open. I flipped the lid off the cooler and searched the contents. I grabbed a bottle of Grey Goose and went looking for my messenger bag. It lay on the ground near the marker. My knees protested over how hard I hit the ground when I dove for the bag, reaching inside it to dig for a lighter. I heard a loud crash behind me and chanced a look. The thing had thrown Daniel against the side of a tree. Daniel got back up and flung himself at the creature. He was moving so fast I couldn’t see all of it, but I was pretty sure he was looking for a chance to snap the thing’s neck.

My fingers found the lighter. I grabbed the vodka and ran to the fight, yelling at Daniel. He saw me, saw the bottle I held up. He nodded then pushed himself away from the monster. I tossed him the bottle and he caught it, snapping the top of the glass neck off and flinging the liquid at the thing, shaking the bottle to try to spread the vodka over it as much as possible.

I waited for Daniel to get out of the way, then flipped the Bic and threw it at the creature. It burst into flames, shrieking. It stumbled around, arms outstretched, until it collapsed, yet more of its thick black blood spilling on the ground.

“Stay dead this time, bitch!” Daniel yelled. He whipped his head around to look at me. His fangs were out, eyes glowing a bright blue. I took a step away from him without thinking. “Are you okay?”

“Yeah,” I said. “Are you?”

“I need a drink. And a bath.” He laughed, fangs retracting as the electricity in his eyes subsided.

“I’m gonna wash my hair about a gazillion times.” I joined in his laughter. We started to walk back to the SUV, stopping to pick up my bag.

We were almost to the passenger door when we heard it. We exchanged a look, then turned in unison. Sure enough, the thing was pulling itself to its feet as if nothing happened.

Daniel let loose with an impressive string of curse words. “What the hell do we have to do to kill that thing?”

<- Part 6

Conclusion ->

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Published on April 12, 2013 09:13 • 42 views