Category Archives: Excerpts

Mya: His Majesty’s Elite

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Mya: His Majesty’s Elite

I’m so excited to announce that my latest book is coming out in less than a month! Mya is a minor character in the Keepers of the Wellsprings series, but, like all of my characters, I knew her story went far deeper than I could venture within the tale of that series. Little did I know, she would bring me on a journey I never could have anticipated! Here’s a little taste of her story, and my upcoming book: Mya.

Her voice is her power.

As the daughter of a vagabond scoundrel, aspiring minstrel Mya has spent her childhood wary of her magical voice while traipsing through dangerous jungles in pursuit of her father’s dream—fortune and glory.

She never imagined Pa’s latest scheme would have her tangling with thieves, sailing across the world on a ship full of pirates, kissing a prince, meeting the foxy elf of her dreams (literally), and dodging the grasp of the most dangerous Sorcerer in Cerion, all the while wondering: Where is Pa?

A mysterious note promising he’ll meet her soon pushes Mya toward options she never considered before. She could go on living at the mercy of her father’s endless plots, or create the home she’s longed for in Cerion, and finally embrace the power of her own voice.

Coming October 12 to Kindle, iBooks, Kobo, Google Play, Nook, and book retailers everywhere.

This exciting prequel to the Keepers of the Wellsprings series focuses on young Mya as she journeys to Cerion for the first time.

 

 

Mya will be available in paperback through Amazon, and special edition hardcover through Ingram.

I’m proud to share my Author’s Sketchbook with you in this very special hardcover edition of Mya: His Majesty’s Elite! Available exclusively in the hardcover edition, the Author’s Sketchbook includes over 20 original sketches I drew during my writing process. Sketching keeps my creativity flowing and helps me sort out characters and places in my mind. Here are a couple of example sketches included in this exciting edition:

 

In this epic fantasy adventure, you’ll be taken on a whirlwind journey across a world unlike any other. Are you ready to meet Mya, one of His Majesty’s Elite?

 

An excerpt from Mya: His Majesty’s Elite

Dear Pa,

Did you know you sent me to Cerion aboard a pirate ship? I’ve never seen greed like this, or danger. But I’m learning how to handle it.

At first, as usual, the men on board were afraid of me. They kept me confined to my cabin and didn’t allow me out. That was fine with me, because you instilled a fear of the sea into me that I still appreciate. But the tides changed about halfway through the voyage (that was an intentional pun—I know how you like them), and they came to see how valuable I could be aboard their ship. I took to singing to heal, Pa, and it worked well, and they kept me on that duty for a while.

But pirates are greedy. You know that as well as I do. Once their fear of me was gone, they tried to command me. The captain called me to the helm, ordering me to sing at their enemies and keep them in pain. He wanted me screaming like I did to save the ship from nearly being lost— I’ll tell you about that later. I talked him out of it, though. After the first attack, I had to coax him each time to let me go to my cabin in peace. But I still had to listen to it. I still heard talk later as the crew bragged and boasted of their victories.

Nine ships, Pa, and countless men brutalized by their swords and their Mage.

I won’t talk about it to you. Not right away. Maybe in time. I fear the anger in my voice would hurt you.

I’m not proud that I hid in my room through most of it. Every time it happened, I couldn’t help but think maybe I could have talked them out of attacking, just like I talked them into leaving me out of it. I could have convinced them to sail away and leave those innocents to their own journeys. I was afraid, though, that I’d fail to convince them, that they’d see through my efforts to control, that I’d end up being the one run through with a blade and cast into the sea. Cort said that was likely. That I had to think of myself and keep myself safe. That no amount of talking would change a lifetime of habits, not even with my ability.

If it wasn’t for him, for Cort, I think I might have lost my mind on this ship. You owe him a great debt, Pa. He kept my spirits up and watched over me, far more than Paewyn did.

Paewyn. She’s another story altogether. You’ve got to watch her if you want to keep her. Her eyes wander too far, she goes way too deep into her cups. She’s gotten better as we get closer to the journey’s end, but for most of the trip, she was totally unhinged.

I think partly she was jealous. The crew admires me, and I let them, mostly to keep myself safe until we see Cerion’s shores. Did you know pirates are excellent tailors? Cort says it’s because they loot so much fine fabric. That’s why they dress so bright and rich. They’ve made me such lovely dresses, Pa. I hope you’ll let me keep at least one. I’ve never owned anything so exquisite, that fit me so well. They’d suit me well for my performances in Cerion, I think.

That is your plan, isn’t it? For me to sing at the competitions? Paewyn has said so. Whenever she’s sober, she keeps me practicing my lute and writing as many songs as I can think to write. I can’t wait to play for you and show you how much I’ve learned.

Thankfully, the voyage is nearly over. I hope in all my life I will never step foot on a ship again. The fear of being cast off it is too much to bear. The vastness of the sea, just like you said, is dreadful.

That reminds me…I’d like to know how you made the voyage to Cerion. I can’t imagine with your fear of water that you’d manage the journey this way. Why did you decide we shouldn’t go together, and why did you send Paewyn with me instead? Did you pay for a Mages’ portal? That would make sense. I know they’re very expensive and even with all of our things sold, you wouldn’t have been able to pay for me, too.

That’s all I can think of these last few days. That, and how much I’m looking forward to seeing you. I know you had your reasons, and I did learn some things, Pa. I’m trying to be reasonable and be grateful, like Paewyn says I should be, but I’ve missed you so much and I really need to understand why you left me for so long. I’m not angry—well, maybe I am, but only a little. Truthfully, I can’t wait to have my feet on solid ground again, and to hug you. I’ve missed you since the Millers. Two months and more is a long time to be apart.

See you in Cerion.
Your Songbird,
Mya

 

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Thankful!

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Thankful!

I’m so thankful for the excitement and support surrounding the release of Call of Elespen, I can’t contain myself! Last week, I snuck the first chapter to my faithful newsletter subscribers and the response was so much fun! If you weren’t in on the surprise, then you should definitely sign up for my newsletter so you don’t miss out on my chapter two sneak-peek.

If you did miss out, don’t worry! I’m feeling so generous and thankful as I look forward to Thanksgiving tomorrow, I’m happy to share chapter one with the world! Here it is. Enjoy, and have a happy Thanksgiving!

Call of Elespen: Excerpt

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Call of Elespen: Excerpt

 

Here’s a fun excerpt from Call of Elespen, book five of the Keepers of the Wellsprings series, to whet your appetite! I’m still putting some polish on this epic finale, but I can say with confidence that it will be available by the end of the month! November 29 is the tentative release date. I really can’t wait for you to read it!


After a long day of meetings, planning, and preparing for the Dawn’s next steps, I fall into my bed and bury my face in my pillow. The sweet, familiar lavender and rose fragrance of Mouli’s laundering soap soothes me to sleep almost instantly. I dream of pleasant, fleeting things as I burrow deep into my soft, downy bed.

“Azi,” tiny hands pat the side of my nose and Flitt’s light dances behind my eyelids as she raps on my brow. “Azi,” she whispers again, this time a little more insistently.
I groan and burrow deeper into my bed in protest, and she tugs at the unraveling strands of my braid.

“Azi, wake up!” she squeaks just above a whisper. “It’s urgent!”

My eyes fly open. I bolt upright in my bed. My heart races. Across the room, Mercy jumps in its stand. “What is it?” I gasp, flinging my warm, downy blanket off of me. “Is it the Dusk? Are they attacking?”

One bare foot touches the cold floor as my sword lands in my outstretched hand. I’m halfway to my armor stand before Flitt darts into my face.

“Shh, shh, shh!” she hisses, pressing her surprisingly non-sticky hands to my lips. “It isn’t anything like that! You’re out of sugar cubes again! It’s like Mouli’s forgotten all about me!”

I stare in disbelief at the bright fairy, blinking the sleep from my eyes. Mercy slides from my loosening grasp and floats to set itself in place on its stand. With a groan, I fall back into bed and pull the blankets up over my head.

“You said it was urgent,” I say thickly through a yawn.

“Well, it is. I’m hungry!” Her squeaky voice, muffled by the comforter, drifts closer. I feel her feet on the side of my head and pull the blankets tighter around myself. “I can’t help it if I’ve been up dancing all night while you were being lazy. A fairy has things to do, you know. Important things.”

“Sure, important things,” I yawn again.

“You don’t believe me,” Flitt huffs. I feel her land by my arm. There’s the sound of a scuffle and a tug on the blanket. She manages to get an edge pulled out of my grasp, and she peeks inside. Light bursts from her face, blinding me with sudden, twinkling rainbows. I screw my eyes shut in protest.

“Of course I believe you,” I say, poking my head out into the cold in surrender. “Could you tone it down a little, maybe?”

“Sorry,” she whispers, giggling, and dims her glow. “But you’re awake now! Hurrah!”

“Hurrah,” I mumble, scooting back to prop myself against my pillow. I glance to my shuttered window as I reach for the cup on my bedside table to take a sip of water. The light of the waning moon spills through the slats, competing with Flitt’s colors as it stretches across the floorboards.

I set the mug back on the table and open the drawer, revealing the stash of sugar cubes I’d grabbed earlier on the way back to my room.

“There,” I say, utterly annoyed.

“Yes!” Flitt squeaks. “You’re the best, Azi. Really.” She dives into the drawer and shoves several cubes into her belt pouch. To my surprise, as hungry as she claimed to be, she doesn’t eat any.

“Do you want to know who I was dancing with?” she asks, now that she’s sure I’m fully awake. She keeps her voice much quieter than usual and glances over her shoulder toward the circle hatch. The ribbons of her skirt rise and fall as she sighs dreamily, twirling in place. “Bet you can’t guess.”
My mood shifts. Maybe it’s because I was just dreaming, or maybe it’s because I’m overly anxious over the looming battle, but something about her here in my room, dancing and glowing in the moonlight, makes my heart swell with love for the little fae. My irritation over being woken up in the middle of the night is easily pushed aside by my affection for her.

Just a few short years ago, I never would have imagined a scene like this could be real. If I’d told someone there was a fairy in my bedroom, Uncle most definitely would have had my head examined.

“Hey, Dreamy,” Flitt whispers, diving toward my face. She stops short of my nose and taps it with her finger. “You’re supposed to guess!”

“Oh,” I say. “Um, Twig?”

She shushes me again, clinging to my cheek, and glances toward Rian’s room.

“Not Twig,” she whispers. “And can you keep your voice down?”

“Why?” I ask.

“You can’t answer a question with a question!” she whispers.

“I didn’t know we were play—”

“Shh!”

“For the ever-loving—” I start to growl, and Flitt squeaks and darts to my ear.

“I don’t want to wake up Stinky,” she whispers. “When was the last time we had a talk, just you and me, huh? If he comes in here, he’ll stick himself to your face all the way ‘til morning, and I just want to talk to you without him around because you’re mine and I’m yours and just this once I don’t want to share!”

Slowly, I turn my head to face her. She hovers in the air, even with my eyes, her fists clenched at her sides, her cheeks red, her eyes narrowed.

“Flitt,” I whisper, trying hard to keep the bemusement out of my voice, “are you jealous of Rian?”

“Don’t be ridiculous,” she huffs, crossing her arms. She purses her lips. Her nostrils flare out. This close, I can see the beautiful shift of color in her eyes: fuchsia, orange, violet.

“You are,” I say, biting my lip to keep myself from laughing.

“That’s not the point!” she squeaks, then claps her hands over her own mouth.


If you haven’t read the Keepers of the Wellsprings series yet, you should definitely get started before the final book comes out! You can grab your copy of all four books on Amazon.

I’ll be posting some more info and updates as release day nears, so make sure to check back often!