Keeping the Beat While Chasing the Dream by Torie James + Excerpt
Was it Shakespeare that said if music be the food of love, play on? Ol' Bill had some really amazing, spot-on observations, just one of his fascinating character traits.
I can happily admit that if I had no music, I'm certain I might not have finished a single book, writing wise. I crave music like a junkie craves a fix and at no other time more than when I sit down to put thoughts to paper. Errr. Or to screen, I should I say! Music motivates me, pushes me past the physical and outward to a more spiritual place. Part of my writing process begins with finding "visuals", pictures to inspire characters, places, scenes and events. Once that's done, then I do up a playlist on my Spotify before downloading the same set of songs to my mp3 so that I'm always "in it".
Each playlist reflects the book du jour, right now, at last count, I have 6 separate playlists. Each list represents the overall theme of the plot, the characters themselves and their feelings. The funny part is when I, me, don't like a certain song and they, the character, argues their case. Case in point? I'm not a huge Celine Dion fan. Nothing against La Chanteuse, she's gorgeous and talented. She's just not my cuppa. But my male protagonist in Timeless Night (Book One of New Camelot), has a massive fanboy crush for her. I mean, what is going on?
Ties That Bind (my current release) turned out to be my personal soft cloud in a rather hard rock atmosphere. My 'Cloie' station is rife with Cobie Calliat, Olivia Newton John, Nickleback, Rod Stewart, Imagine Dragons and One Republic. I make no apologies, I'm highly eclectic and the music is fundamentally for them, my creations. Like a snake to the charmer's call, if I play "their" songs, "they" speak to me readily. By the same token, if I'm listening to song one likes and another doesn't, then things get very psychotic in my brain stew. But I really try to make sure all "their" stuff blends, at least the couples since they share soundtracks. It's worked out so far....
I've recently begun work on a new book that is a bit of a sticky widget, music wise. *Laughs*. My male lead LOVES Elvis. I smell bromance. However, my female lead, HATES Elvis with a burning, irrational anger that borders on scary at times. Since my guy knows this, he has recently urged me to download more, more, more of the King. Which my girl counteracts by making sure I have far too much Katy Perry. I had to put my foot down when she wanted to sneak Bieber in there, "just as a joke."
I realize I have low standards but yeah. No.
I shudder to think what is coming my way in the next few books. *rubs head* But it's a journey I'm more than happy to take. As long as the tunes keep flowing of course!
Fate always finds a way...
For thousands of years, the Gods of Olympus and Asgard have warred, each determined to establish dominion over the Earth. Both pantheons grow weary and in a slick unprecedented move, Zeus and Odin design a plan to unite their realms.
Clotho, the youngest Greek Fate bears many burdens and secrets but none greater than the one she doesn't even realize she carries.
Soren, a proud and ancient Viking warrior holds the power of demons and gods, but not by his own choice. More importantly, he holds the heart of the very woman who broke his own.
Dagr, grandson of Odin and heir to Asgard, desires little more than ultimate power and when offered Cloie's hand in marriage to cement his place, eagerly agrees. But he has his own reasons for wanting the baby Fate in his grasp...and bed.
Passions collide and betrayals abound when the First Evil is unleashed on Gods and man alike. Cloie holds the key to all destruction and salvation.
Her secret will save the world...
"Smile, child. This is your wedding day."
Cloie stared straight ahead, refusing to meet Zeus's gaze, although she heard thick lust coloring each word. The leisurely stroke of his hand swept down her arm in proprietary fashion, lingering along the gentle swell of her right hip before he stopped.
“I’d smile were the groom of my choosing, Papa.”
Zeus’s fingers curled around the nape of her neck, holding her in place. The stinging, heat of his powers seared her flesh with lacerating pain, causing her to flinch once, then grow still. She refused to shed a tear or make a single sound. Despite the burning agony, she wouldn't give her stepfather the satisfaction.
“I know well what your choice would be, Clotho. I’m about to make you Goddess Queen of the Norse Pantheon and you still defy me! For your idiot pet!" Zeus’s hot breath washed over her ear, his lips brushing the delicate shell. His grip on her neck tightened, the acrid stench of scorched flesh choking her.
“He’s not my pet.” She bit out, coughing.
“He is nothing! He lives because of Odin's stupidity and your defiance! And you would be his whore!”
“Better his whore than your daughter.” Defiance flared in her voice.
Snarling, the Greek King of the Gods shook her like a rag doll, forcing her to meet his blazing cerulean eyes. “You will marry Dagr. You will act as befits the daughter of Zeus and a Queen of Asgard. If at any time, I sense Dagr’s unhappiness with this union or you, I myself will destroy Soren. If you disobey me, the same. I see defiance in your eyes, Clotho. And arrogance. I can't kill him but I can make him wish for death. His quality of life depends on your performance and your obedience to your loving Papa.”
Always using her heart against her. His modus operandi never wavered. It worked every time. And well the Olympian knew it.
“Then best you get me to the altar, Papa.”
Each word was laced with careful respect, all rebellion gone from her in the face of his threat. She'd harmed Soren enough, she would not allow Zeus to lay one finger on the keeper of her heart. Cloie kept her face impassive when Zeus released her, swallowing hard past the knot of anguish his hands on her skin had caused. Clever God, none would see the wounds he'd inflicted with her hair down as it was. Unbound hair to attest to her innocence. Ha!
“I will marry Dagr. I will be a most worthy Queen and helpmate. I shall unite Norse and Greeks together as no other union has. I will do all of this and more.” She slid dainty fingers around his elbow while he used his powers to swing aside the silky curtains of the white tent Hera insisted she have to prepare in. “But by my own word, if you ever lay a harmful hand on Soren, it will be the last time you have such.”
“Empty threats, child. And well you know it. Just do as I tell you and there will be no need. You’ll thank me when you are ruling Asgard.”
“Don’t you mean when you are ruling?”
I've loved reading since I was old enough to hold a book in my lap. While my friends were out playing, I was generally curled up nearby falling down rabbit holes, catching second stars to the right, and stepping through wardrobes into mysterious lands and countless adventures.
When those stories ended, I made up my own and kept going.
This later on translated into a strong passion for writing that has helped me keep my feet on the ground and my head in the clouds.
Lover of Dr. Pepper, all things chocolate, and Duran Duran, my dreams finally became a reality with the publication of Timeless Night, with the amazing people at Breathless Press. Timeless Night begat Timeless Desire. I'm currently working on the third book in the series, Timeless Surrender. I've also written several short erotica tales called Fractured Fantasies on top of beginning the sequel to Ties That Bind: The Cloie Chronicles with my writing partner, Jammie Lynn.