Saturday, June 25, 2011

Interview With Author, L. J. DeLeon

Hello Everyone,

Today, I would like to introduce urban fantasy author, LJ DeLeon.  To me urban fantasy is a cross between science fiction and fantasy, but that's me.  Ms. DeLeon has led a very interesting life. 

 Bio:  LJ DeLeon is an Army brat and a world-traveled former CIA Intelligence Analyst who has seen enough of this world to appreciate other worlds. Working for the CIA was great training for writing fantasy, paranormal, and futuristic romance—and understanding the warrior mentality. Amazing how real life and fiction overlap. Honor is the ultimate seduction.

 1.     Briefly take us on the journey with you – when did you start writing and what hurdles did you have to overcome to get published?

I am an avid reader. When I was stationed at the US Embassy in Switzerland, I read a book that wasn’t just a wall-banger but the kind you wanted to burn in the barbecue. Not knowing better, I said, “I can write better than that!” A year later, I had a completed book. I printed it, read it, and used it to line the cat’s litter box. Then I set about learning how to write fiction. I joined RWA, flew from Switzerland to Chicago to attend my first conference, took every craft workshop they had, and then wrote and wrote and wrote some more.

2.     What’s been the greatest contributing factor to achieving your goal of publication?

My husband. Halfway through writing my first novel, I got an idea for the second and started to write it. My husband had me print it out “so he could read it.” Once he had the papers in his hand, he hit the delete button and took my back-up disk. Remember when we had disks? He said, “You get this back after you’ve finished your book. If you don’t finish the first one, you’ll never finish a novel because you’ll always get another idea in the middle of the book you’re currently writing.” He was right.

3.     What has surprised you the most about being a published author?

How the pressure increased. I’d always known that authors did their own marketing and had edits, et cetera. The pressure to write the next book surprised me. I had to treat writing like a business. My fans also let me know they are fast readers and want me to write faster so they can get the next book in the Warriors For Light series or The Turner Chronicles. Fans are the true pressure and for them I am grateful. Every time I hit a block, I pull out their letters and read them for inspiration.

4.     How do you come up with your story ideas?

I’m a news junkie and I get a lot of my ideas from it. I know it sounds strange, but I watch the news and think, what if? I’ve also always read Fantasy and Science Fiction. So my first inclination is to put a what if into urban fantasy romance or futuristic romance. The key to all my writing is: Honor is the ultimate seduction.

5.     Do you have a favorite author?

Now that is mean. I have so many, but I’ll give it a stab. I love Ilona Andrews, Nalini Singh, Allan Cole (anything he writes), Marjorie Liu, among a large number. I’ve also discovered a couple of new indie authors KH Lemoyne and LW Herndon.

6.     What did you want to be when you grew up at the ages of 6, 13 and 24?

At six, I wanted to be an explorer. At thirteen, I wanted to be an Olympic swimmer. I was with a swimming team and went to the Junior Olympics. At twenty-three, I was married to a career army officer, who later joined the CIA, and was traveling the world, fulfilling my desire to become an explorer and learning about other cultures.

7.     Tell us a little bit about your next book? Will it be a romantic fantasy or some other genre?

They will be urban fantasy like the three books out in the Warriors For Light series. They will be shorter than the first two books in the series Warrior’s Rise & Dragon Child. They will be closer in length to Absolution.

8.     Would you like to tell us about your release?  How did you come up with the idea?

My next release will be Defiance. It’s due out late July or the middle of August 2011. This story is a shorter one. It is about a major secondary character, Raziel, King of the Seraphim and when he met his mate, Leila. It tells the story of their love match, jealousy, a fight for power, and Beliar’s and Asmodeus’ fall from grace. (I plan to bring out one or two of these shorter books per year of secondary characters. Some of them will be under twenty thousand words.)

Sophie’s Challenge & Kate’s Army will be released late November or early December 2011. These books are part of the main Warriors For Light series arc. You meet Sophie and learn about Kate in Dragon Child.

9.     Could you give us a blurb and an excerpt of your story?  I'm sure my readers would love to read a little of your story.

For Fae-human half-breed Deva Morgan, life as she knows it changes on her thirtieth birthday. One moment she’s a barkeep, the next she is a warrior fated to save Earth from the Dark Lord and his demon hoard. Shunned by both her races, she faces a danger-filled quest with few allies. Too bad her powers haven’t fully emerged or stabilized.

For Deva it is life or death, on-the-job training with her companion, Padraig O’Neal, a Fae warrior with a shadowed past. Can he quiet the storm raging inside her, help her harness the growing power within her, and provide a barrier between Deva and a fatal outcome? Will their love be enough to save Deva and stop the Dark Lord’s demons from entering Earth?

Excerpt of Warrior’s Rise:

This is the second scene from Warrior’s Rise. Padraig is a Fae warrior who has been sent from Otherworld by the queen to train Deva. This is after Padraig and Deva killed two Fomorii demons.

     For the past hour, Deva had watched Padraig. Everything about him telegraphed, Come near me at your own risk. Yet his swirling silver eyes hypnotized and captivated her, and she couldn’t keep from tracking his movements.
    His intimidating six-foot-six muscled swimmer’s build warned he could take on all comers. A long black leather duster covered his matching vest, pants and black boots that came almost to his knees. They looked like shit-kickers, but she knew they weren’t. Something about them triggered a memory. Silver-blond hair, pulled back in a queue that fell halfway down his back, displayed his regal features in sharp relief.
   The man moved around her bar, silent, like a wraith. Not a whisper from his clothing or footfalls. Her dad moved the same way in Fae-made clothing. As beautiful as Padraig’s movements were, this man was more deadly than a Black Mamba.
    Just a few hours ago, her biggest problem was reining in Mark and Jamie when she’d shouted at them over the music that the table was for pool only! Chastened, they had backed away and raised beer bottles in her direction. In contrast, the co-ed beside them had flipped her off.
    Dressed in jeans, wife-beater t-shirts and scuffed boots, they looked like they’d just come in from a ride on their hogs. Their leather jackets hung on the coat hooks by the door. To norm females, they were attractive bad boys you wanted to reform. Just by walking into a room, they drew every unattached woman. Their brindle hair set off ice blue eyes that danced in delight when looking at any woman.
    Gorgeous werewolves and Steve, her missing wereleopard. A witch, Druid and two mages, or magicks as they like to be called, and a gargoyle. “Monsters,” if one believed human norm fiction. “Warriors For Light” to the Tuatha de Danaan. But Deva simply called them Family.
    Now her biggest problem was safeguarding them all. Unfortunately, she suspected that task was bigger than she could handle.
     Sighing, she forced a smile as Padraig slid onto the stool facing her. Thank the Goddess for the plank of wood between them. Otherwise, she’d embarrass herself by yanking free that leather tie and running her fingers through that long, silky hair.
    “Well done. I was surprised at your ease using the shotgun.”
    As his tongue moistened perfectly sculpted lips, she gripped the counter to keep upright and clinched her teeth to keep from mimicking his action. The weakness in her knees she couldn’t control. His voice flowed over her like warm honey begging to be licked off.
    “My drink?”
    She jerked herself back from her fantasy, reached into the cooler, retrieved another longneck and smacked it onto the bar it on front of him. “I’ve been training for this moment since I was twelve. After eighteen years, I hope I’d be able to take on a demon.”
     “Practice is different from ending an actual life, even that of a Fomorii, especially when it wears a human face.”
     Frowning, she rubbed her shaking hand against the side of her leg. Until the moment she’d pulled the trigger, she hadn’t been sure she could do it. He was right. Killing someone, even a demon, was different than lopping the head off a pumpkin scarecrow.
     She’d always been a healer and a seer at witch level, but three months ago she began changing. Mutating. Now her ability exceeded that of an Earth seer, maybe even one from Otherworld, and that scared the crap out of her. Something caged inside her clawed toward freedom, savage in its demand for release. A tsunami of power was building, waiting, biding its time to break free and erase everything in its path.
     Her eyes lifted and met Padraig’s glacial stare. His words, while comforting, hadn’t touched those frigid silver-gray eyes that broadcasted danger, stay away. He seemed to understand the conflict she’d experienced with her first kill. Perhaps he would be useful after all.
     Damn! What was it about this bad boy that drew her?

Contact information:

For the full first chapter of all my released Warriors For Light and Turner Chronicles books go to my website htttp:// and look under books. This site also has free short stories.

For my blog and information about the Warriors For Light series go to

Thank you for being with us today, LJ.  Your books sound as exciting as your life. May your stories be a huge success. I've enjoyed getting to know you better.  I wish I'd known you sooner, I would have liked to have followed you around the world when you were with the C.I.A.  Smile. 

Until next Sunday, have a great week. 


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Pictures of the Missouri River

Hi All,

Before, I get started with the purpose of my blog,  I want to wish all the father's out there, Happy Father's Day.

Next, I want to tell everyone I will be blogging all day, at Coffee Time Romances blog on Monday the 20th at this URL:

Okay, now what I'm really talking about today.  There are so many things going on in the world these days, but I'm going to talk about the cities and towns along the Missouri River.  The little town I live in is a suburb of Kansas City, and we have been warned of a flood in our area.  Gates have been opened to release the water up North of us.  Two levees have broken and released more water, and it's headed our way. 

My town has done all it can do to prepare for this flood.  Some of the businesses in our downtown area have gathered their things and moved them to safety while others can't decide whether to wait longer and hope the water doesn't reach them.  It's a quandary for everyone who lives in the flood zone. 

Here are some pictures my husband took at the Missouri River this week.  The river was high then, but it has rained since the day these were taken and more rain is on the way. 

In the above picture, the Corp of Engineers is working on the river.  The top picture is a bit deceiving because the width of the river is much greater. We were standing on the Missouri side and on the other side is Kansas. 

Here is another picture.  You might be able to tell how muddy the river looks.  That's how it got the nickname of the Mighty MO or Muddy MO. In these pictures it looks like the river isn't moving, but once again it's appearance is deceiving because the current underneath is very strong.

I feel for all the people who are going through floods, fires, hurricanes and any kind of disaster.  With so much going on in the world, I can't understand why so many people try to hurt others.  People need our help and not our criticism. You would think, we would work together instead of against one another. 

Before I go, I want you to know I have been updating my website, and if you have time take a look at it.

Until next Sunday, take care and have a safe week. 


Saturday, June 11, 2011

Did I Over React?

Hi Everyone,

Earlier this week an incident happened that I may have over reacted to.  I'm going to tell you about it to see what you think.

I was in the checkout lane at a local store chain.  Hubby was sitting comfortably on some lawn furniture waiting for me to check out.  There were four people in front of me and a couple behind me.

When I stand in line anywhere I start making out my check and put everything on it except for the amount.  The line moved slowly because everyone had a lot of purchases, and the little boy and girl in the cart in front of me were getting antsy.  I was talking to their mom a bit and smiling at the kids and talking to them.

The couple behind me were speaking to each other in Spanish, so I didn't pay any attention to them, since I didn't understand them.  One member of the party was talking on the cell phone, but the girl was darting around tapping him on the legs.  When they started getting loud and crowding me, I glanced behind me and noted the male had his phone pointed my direction.  At this time, I realized they weren't carrying any items to buy.  That is when I became concerned because they had been behind me almost the whole time I had been in line.

Hubby came walking up because he'd become worried that they might be trying to get my purse, which was lying in the cart.  The couple disappeared right after my husband appeared.

When we got to the cashier, I told him I suspected they were trying to get a picture of my check, and my husband told the cashier what he thought.  The young man took what we told him seriously and called his manager.  The manager came right away to talk to us, and we explained what we thought might be going on.

The manager immediately checked the security cameras, but since we were so far back when it happened it wasn't caught on tape.  My husband was able to give a description of the couple, and the manager said he would walk around to see if he could spot them.  Both, hubby and I believed they had left the premises.

Worried, we immediately went to our bank closed out our checking account leaving just enough money there for outstanding checks.  We opened another checking account transferring most of our money to the new account.

We, also, had some direct deposits going into our account that had to be changed.  It was a hassle, but our credit union was wonderful to work with and took care of everything for us.  Both our credit union and the store chain took this matter very serious.

Now, to why I'm wondering if I over reacted; I have no way of knowing what this young couple was up to.  Were they trying to get my purse or get information from my check?  I have no way of knowing for sure.  There actions were enough to arouse suspicions in both me and my husband.

Hubby told me I should have turned around and told them to back off.  Instead, I tried to ignore them.

What would you have done in this instance?

Thank you for reading. Until next Sunday have a great week.


Saturday, June 4, 2011

Things On My Mind

Hello Folks,

Today, I'm writing about the things I have been thinking about. The first item on my mind is this week I celebrated my sixty-seventh birthday. It's something I would rather not celebrate since it only means I am getting older. When I was young time passed so slowly, but when you get my age the time starts to fly by. Many of my friends and co-workers have died; some of them older than me and others were younger. Yes, it's time to start thinking about one's mortality at my age, and if it weren't for my birth date, I wouldn't give it a thought. After all, your age is just a number, and in my mind I'm still young and able to do all the things when I was thirty. Don't I wish? Smile.

The next thing on my mind is Dory, my tortoiseshell cat. Dory has been sick all week. We took her to the vet on Tuesday because she was throwing up. It had been going on for a couple of weeks, but I had thought it was because she ate fast and didn't chew her food good. She didn't throw up all the time, just a few times a week. The vet gave her a shot, Penicillin, and some hairball medicine. Last night, she started sneezing and coughing. This little girl loves to play, but she hasn't played for a couple of days. We took her to the vet again today. The vet took x-rays and found her stomach is very full, which apparently is unusual. We were told to cut back on her food and instead of giving her hard food to give her soft food. Since, she's never liked the soft food that wasn't an option. We aren't giving her as much hard food. Also, the vet put her on Amoxicillin, since we thought she might be allergic to Penicillin. That hasn't helped the sneezing and coughing, so we may need another trip to the vet on Monday. We love this little fur ball, and we want her well.

Has anyone been watching the Casey Anthony murder trial? I seem to have become addicted to this trial. I have known lots of different kinds of liars in my life, and some even very much like Casey. However, none of them ever murdered their children or anyone else. Not to say Casey murdered her daughter because at this time Casey's only alleged to have committed the crime.

Why am I so interested in this trial? The answer is multifaceted. The little girl, Caylee Anthony, was only two years old about to turn three. Who wouldn't want justice for the little cutie. I find the dysfunction of the Anthony family fascinating. When I was young, I wanted to be a lawyer, so this could be another reason for my attention to this trial. Am I studying the participants in the trial to use as characters in a book? That is always a possibility. To be honest, I think I have become involved in watching this case for the psychological reasons. I want to know what makes people do the things they do. Why are these people like they are?

These are just a few of my thoughts this past week. I want to thank those who visit my blog every week and those who are first time visitors. Have a wonderful June month, and I'll see you next Sunday.