Heather Massey's Blog, page 2

November 15, 2015


For my steampunk romance column this month, I had the pleasure of interviewing AR DeClerck, author of THE ALCHEMIST'S KISS! I invite you to head on over and read her action-packed answers to my questions about how the story came to be. Enjoy!

Joyfully yours,
Heather

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Published on November 15, 2015 16:18 • 9 views

November 11, 2015



Authors Pauline Baird Jones and Genie Davis teamed up for a sci-fi romance themed holiday anthology called ALL I GOT FOR CHRISTMAS and it’s available now at various online vendors! How’s that for being ahead of the game?
Here’s the cover and blurb:

Beware of aliens bearing gifts!

Christmas is coming and so is All I Got For Christmas. Inside you'll get the evocative and haunting, "Riding for Christmas," and the offbeat and heartwarming, "Up on the Housetop."

Riding For Christmas:  
A mesmerizing tale of interstellar time travel and romance! 
Jane MacKenzie, visiting her grandfather's abandoned ranch, discovers something in the snow. When she opens the ribbon-wrapped box, it mysteriously returns Sam Harrington, who "disappeared" in an 1885 blizzard. 
There's nothing alien in this enduring tale of holiday homecomings and the hope of love that lasts a lifetime.

Up on the House Top:  
Will her Christmas be ho, ho, ho? Or oh no, no, no? Gini knew Christmas in Wyoming would be challenging as she headed over the frozen crick and through the woods to the family cabin. The lights are going out in her mom's attic, the guy who broke her heart is on the porch...and there are aliens on the roof. 
According to her mom, it's going to be the best Christmas ever.

Do something for you (0r someone you love) and make "All I Got for Christmas" what you GET for Christmas!
About the authors
Genie Davis is a multi-published novelist, journalist, and produced screen and television writer living near the beach in Los Angeles. Her novels include mystery thriller Marathon, romantic suspense titles The Model Man and Five O'Clock Shadow, and the literary noir, Dreamtown, with two brand new books and an exciting re-issue coming soon. And, writing with Linda Marr, there's the fabulously fun light romantic suspense of Between the Sheets and Animal Attraction. She's a winner of RWA's Passionate Plume Award. You can see her work in the arts on her own diversionsLA.com

Pauline Baird Jones had a tough time with reality from the get-go. After "schooling" from four, yes FOUR brothers, she knew that some people needed love and others needed shooting. Pauline figured she could do both. Romantic suspense was the logical starting point, but there were more worlds to explore, more rules to break and minds to bend. She grabbed her pocket watch and time travel device and dove through the wormhole into the world of science fiction and even some Steampunk.

Now she wanders among the genres, trying a little of this and a lot of that, rampaging through her characters' lives like Godzilla because she does love her peril (when it's not happening to her). Never fear, she gives her characters happy endings. Well, the good characters. The bad ones get justice.
***Joyfully yours,Heather

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Published on November 11, 2015 04:49 • 8 views

November 5, 2015


Earlier this year, author Donna S. Frelick debuted with her sci-fi romance UNCHAINED MEMORY. In February 2016, she’ll have a new release called TROUBLE IN MIND (INK’d Press)! Both books are set in her Interstellar Rescue series. Check out her stories if you like contemporary-set sci-fi romance, intrepid heroes and heroines, and alien abduction intrigue.

Before I help unveil the cover and blurb, Donna S. Frelick kindly supplied me with a few fun gifs to paint a picture about what you can expect from TROUBLE IN MIND!Sexy

Romantic

Science Fiction


Thriller


Alien Bad Guys

Unexpected Allies

Sounds like a fun ride! And now for the cover and blurb of TROUBLE IN MIND:

She couldn’t get him out of her mind— and that’s when the trouble started.
FBI Special Agent Alana Matheson is good at her job, despite a past that would make even a seasoned agent cringe. She has no time for the outside help the victim’s family has brought in on a kidnapping case, no matter how good looking he is.
But galactic tracker Gabriel Cruz is no ordinary private investigator, and the skills he brings to the job will save both their lives. Because Lana and Gabriel are not the only ones seeking an unusual little boy and his mother. Their rivals in the chase are not of this world, and only an alliance built on the bonds of love can ensure that Lana and Gabriel beat the alien hunters to their prey.
***
To learn more about Donna S. Frelick and her work, follow her on Twitter: @DonnaS.Frelick
Joyfully yours,Heather

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Published on November 05, 2015 21:01 • 12 views

November 1, 2015



If you enjoy sci-fi romances that feature a hero and heroine on opposite sides of a war or invasion, then you might be interested in Mary Brock JonesRESISTANCEand PAY THE PIPER, books one and two in her Hatheseries. Both are novel-length.
Here are the covers and blurbs:

When two, opposed worlds must fight for their very survival, what chance is there for a pair of duty-plagued lovers caught in the middle?

Five long years ago, the Terran invaders appeared in the skies above Hathe and life on that peaceful and wealthy planet changed forever. Now, the time has come to throw the invaders out. The Hathians are about to reclaim Hathe.Hamon Radcliff is one of those Terrans. He must use any means available to keep Hathe in Terran control, no matter how much he hates it, for Earth cannot survive without the urgonium found only on Hathe. It’s their main energy source. But all the rules change when he captures a woman of the long-lost Hathian ruling class, a woman he strongly suspects is an undercover agent for a secret Hathian resistance movement. Now he must choose. Protect the woman he loves and let millions of his people die. Or break her, find out what she knows and save Earth. Secrets are revealed; questions must be answered, as two lovers caught in a maelstrom of opposing loyalties face their toughest fights yet.
For five years, the Terrans ruled Hathe, taking whatever they needed, especially the energy-rich mineral, urgonium, Earth must have to survive. For five years, the Hathians kept their world safe by hiding behind a façade, posing as subservient peasants and pretending all the wealth and knowledge of Hathe had vanished. Then came the time for Hathe to fight back, and for the Terrans to learn how wrong they were. 
Now the war is over.
Hamon Radcliff was Head of Security for the Terran forces; his wife, Marthe an Castre, belonged to the Hathian resistance.  Surviving the peace was always going to be tough for lovers caught on opposite sides. Both have done what they must to protect their home worlds and those actions have consequences. Nor does the end of war take away all the bitter anger between Hathe and Earth. When that anger finds an outlet, and turns its glare on Marthe and Hamon, peace time becomes downright dangerous.
***
For more information, follow Mary Brock Jones on Twitter: @MaryJones7 Joyfully yoursHeather

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Published on November 01, 2015 14:00 • 24 views

October 30, 2015

The 2015 Swirl Award winners have been announced, and P.J. Dean's PARADOX (book four in her Felig Chronicles series) won 2nd runner up!

 

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Published on October 30, 2015 14:56 • 12 views

October 28, 2015



Though I discovered the concept of sci-fi romance as a tween (even though I didn’t have a name for it), consuming it was always something of a treasure hunt since my entertainment options were severely limited (this was pre-Internet).  I’m thinking the scarcity model applies to my experience because I always enjoyed SFR, but it was in short supply for most of my life (especially films and TV shows).
One result of the general lack is that I learned to be satisfied with romantic SF stories in which the romance was a subplot. Or I’d tune in sharply to anything in a story that was code for romance. I learned to be satisfied with whatever the story offered (“you get what you get and you don’t get upset”). Other times, though, I’d want more, so I’d expand the romance elements in my head and/or sought out fan fiction to fill the void.
Years later, when I was able to access SFR that served the romance parts as well as the SF parts, it was like hitting the jackpot! Yet it didn’t mean I lost my taste for romantic SF wherein the romance was subtle or less integral to the plot. If anything, SFRs with a more central romance simply added to my choices. It didn’t become an either-or situation. Rather, my definition of SFR became more fluid. These days, my mood and wide-ranging tastes dictate what I choose to read at any given moment. One day I might want romantic SF with hard SF elements, while on another I’d choose a lighthearted action-adventure SFR that’s heavy on the romance. Sometimes a more cerebral/philosophical or thematically rich SFR does the trick, or I might be in the mood for an SFR featuring Weird elements or one that’s playfully erotic. So I really appreciate the opportunity to have as many different choices as I currently do.
Some readers are like me and others are different. There are readers who want the romance to dominate the story. Others prefer the SF elements to take center stage. For authors, this situation can be challenging, especially if they’re competing or perceive themselves as competing with other authors. From a reader’s perspective, having romantic SF, SFRs that are a 50-50 blend, and those that are more romance centered is a fantastic scenario.
When I’m choosing my next SFR to read, I purposefully calculate what I’m in the mood for in terms of the SF-romance ratio. So when I can scroll through my TBR list or browse online for a book to purchase, the fact that I can find a best fit for my mood is awesome. And even if I overlook one particular type of blend one day, I might be inclined to read it the next month.
I don’t view various types of SFR as being in competition with each other; I view them as bringing balance to the genre. Same goes for the authors who write them—SFR benefits from a variety of perspectives. In a general sense, sci-fi romances are competing more with obscurity than with each other.
Will some types of stories have an edge over others in terms of sales? If one considers that romance has a dominant presence in the market, then yes, SFRs with more romance probably sell better than romantic SF. But it doesn’t mean romantic SF stops appealing to some or even many of those readers or is somehow less valid.
Whenever I encounter discussions—or debates!—about the “true” definition of SFR, I feel the root of them has more to do with marketing challenges and frustrations over poor sales than the actual stories themselves. While variety is great for readers, it can simultaneously be frustrating for authors trying to predict what will sell. The only answer I have for that is, don’t try to predict, especially if it means going too far outside of one’s comfort zone.
SF + romance + upbeat ending: this combination will mean different things to different readers at different times. That said, we’ll know SFR when we see it—and even then some of us will disagree wildly with each other! That’s not a scenario authors can ever hope to overcome, sorry to say. So shake it off and just do your own unique SFR thing since it means you’re doing your best to serve readers and help sci-fi romance grow.
Joyfully yours,Heather

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Published on October 28, 2015 07:20 • 8 views

October 19, 2015

Author Erica Conroy tipped me off about a special price for her sci-fi romance HIS ONLY HOPE. It's available at Amazon for 99 cents for a limited time, so if this SFR is up your alley, grab it while it's hot!


Cord, a former soldier who lost his young family, is hired to ensure a scientist’s sister is transported safely to the Ashula Mountains. Easy money, right? Not when a self-proclaimed governor, the natives and Cord’s old friend are all against him. Add to that his personal demons, alcoholism and an unwanted attraction to an alien...Cord has his hands full.

Hope, however, has a destiny. One that will save the planet and everyone on it, but only if she succeeds. Unfortunately for her, the only one who can help is a hairy and uncouth alien male.

There’s never a dull moment in this new frontier where winter is never-ending and tech doesn’t work, but one question remains. Will Cord accept the second chance at love he’s offered or will Hope slip through his fingers in this touching Science Fiction Romance?

***
I'm digging the cover's bald heroine and Wolverine-ish type hero. Nice!

Joyfully yours,
Heather

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Published on October 19, 2015 05:50 • 11 views

October 16, 2015



Got a couple of articles for your weekend reading!


The thing about writing SFR is that we are in a genre that is uncontainable. As writers, we can traverse time and space. We can zip through any universe our hearts and minds dream up. But whatever elements there are in it, the SFR story revolves around beings. Be they alien, dragon shifters, robot, or humanoids, all SFR has character at the heart of the story. We can all name our favorite science fiction authors and favorite romance authors, but what happens if you smash them all together?

Short answer: awesomesauce stories!

The second article is by me. I’m guest blogging at Rotoscopers, a great animation news site. The topic: Illumination Entertainment, We Need To Talk About Scarlet Overkill
While not SFR per se, the issues I raise about the spectacular female supervillain from MINIONS have relevance for the genre:
To grant a powerful, progressive female villain like Scarlet Overkill a starring role in a mainstream animated film with a valuable redemption arc—one that’s usually reserved for male characters—would require a huge shift in perspective from Illumination’s core, all-male team. I wager the concept is simply too innovative and daring for them.
I will be eternally grateful for Scarlet and Herb Overkill, but ultimately, my message isn’t for Illumination Entertainment. It’s for other animation studios who are courageous enough to serve female audiences in all the ways they deserve.

Happy reading!

Joyfully yours,
Heather

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Published on October 16, 2015 11:16 • 12 views

October 15, 2015

This month at Heather Massey's Steampunk Cafe, I'm blogging about E.E. Ottoman's A MATTER OF DISAGREEMENT. However, there's nothing disagreeable about this story featuring two sparring, enemies-to-lovers academics. Check out my post to see if this steampunk romance is up your alley!

Joyfully yours,
Heather

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Published on October 15, 2015 14:36 • 11 views

October 14, 2015

My latest Heroes and Heartbreakers post is about older SFR heroines and why I love 'em! A tidbit from Space Age: Older Heroines in Sci-Fi Romance:
Older heroines in sci-fi romance are pretty scarce, but two 2015 releases made me realize how much I want more heroines in this category. Older heroines seem fresh and the life issues they face are different from those of heroines in their 20s. I enjoy getting a glimpse into a romance heroine whose life stage differs from mine. I want to be more aware of such issues through the sci-fi romance I read, so there’s a bit of cerebral appeal as well.
Joyfully yours,
Heather

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Published on October 14, 2015 15:10 • 18 views