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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Blog tour: Nevermore, by David Nial Wilson

Everyone Loves a Mystery

When I asked what would work best for a guest post here, I was told that I should write about why I wrote the book I'm here to promote, and a little bit about myself.  I've written a lot about Nevermore, A Novel of Love, Loss & Edgar Allan Poe in the short time it's been available, but when I thought about why I wrote it – I realized there was at least one reason I had not yet touched on.

I can't resist a mystery.  I was led to this story by things I discovered researching an earlier novel, and one of the things that I discovered I realized had been bothering me for a very long time.  One of my favorite poems is The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe.  It's dark, tragic, a tale of loss and pain – and at it's core, there is a mystery.  Who is Lenore?  Research on the subject turned up a number of remote possibilities, but nothing even close to a definitive answer.

Why the raven? What does the bird symbolize?  We know that Ravens are psychopomps – that they help to usher the souls of the living into the next world.  We've seen The Crow – and those dark birds are magic.  Whose spirit did Poe write about?  His wife was on her deathbed.  His parents were dead.  Even the girl for whom he wrote his first love poem died.  There is no sign, however, of a Lenore and Edgar was a talented poet.  He didn't need to make up a name to play for the rhyme.

I decided to play one of my favorite games as an author.  "What if it happened this way?"

I intended this story to be a short flashback in the next volume of The DeChance Chronicles.  My main protagonist, Donovan DeChance (who also has a raven – Asmodeus) met Poe long ago near The Great Dismal Swamp, and he hinted about that in Kali's Tale, book IV of The DeChance Chronicles.  I expected to do a short rundown of that meeting and move on to the story I had plotted in my head, but Edgar and Lenore had other ideas.

So I wrote a story of The Great Dismal Swamp. I added a poet with a dying wife, an artist named Lenore who was compelled to release the images of spirits she saw trapped in the trees and water, stones and walls around her, a crow named Grimm, and – a surprise even to me – a revised fairy tale from The Brothers Grimm – who actually wrote a story titled "The Raven" long, long ago.

I wrote Nevermore because I wanted to be a part of something old, and wonderful.  I wanted my own dream of what might have happened in that place, so long ago, to join with the stories of and about Edgar Allan Poe.  I wanted to write more about The Great Dismal Swamp, which is near my home and a place I dearly love.  I wanted, in short, to tell a story, and I hope you're going to read it – and love it.
I've been writing for what seems like forever.  My first novel was published in 1987- it was the Star Trek Voyager novel Chrysalis – but that was not the first I sold.  My first truly original book was a novel titled This is My Blood- which is sort of a cult classic.  In that novel, I played that game for the first time – What if it happened this way? – and I did that by writing excerpts from the Book of the Gospel According to Judas Iscariot, and by suggesting that when Christ was in the desert, he was tempted with one last thing – a woman – Mary Magdalene, a fallen angel raised by Lucifer. Instead of tempting him, she fell in love and wanted to return to Heaven.
In that novel I also wrote about Lilith, vampires, and a lot of other things.  It is still probably my most popular novel.  What if is definitely still my favorite game.  Here is a short excerpt from Nevermore.

"The room had a small chest of drawers along the side wall, and he carefully unpacked and stored his clothing.  Next he pulled out the book he was reading, a novella titled Carmen, by Prosper Mérimée, and his worn copy of Children's and Household Tales – or – Grimm's Fairy Tales.  He set these aside almost without thought and drew forth a thick sheaf of papers bound in a ribbon, his pens, and a small bottle of ink.  He glanced at the window.  Through the curtains he saw that there was a light.  He placed the ink, pens, and paper on the table that rested against the wall beneath the window and pulled the curtain aside curiously.

To the right, along the back of the building and on toward the tavern, only the moonlight shone down to illuminate the trees lining the near side of the Intercoastal Waterway.  To the left, however, at the very corner of the building, flickering lamplight danced outside the window of the room adjacent to his.

What had the tavern keeper said?  Miss MacReady?  And the boy, Tom? "She's up all hours…"

It seemed that it was true.  Edgar smiled.  He was no stranger to late nights.  He sometimes believed he would be unable to write at all if it were not for the long hours between dusk and dawn, when the world quieted, after a fashion, the light flickered, the paper took on a yellow lamp-light hue, and his imagination wandered.  He thought of his desk, and his home – and that brought him to thoughts of his wife, Virginia, and her failing health.

He turned abruptly back to the chair and opened a side-pocket on his bag.  He pulled free a large, silver-plated flask and carried it to the table.  The wind was picking up outside, blowing in from the south.  Trees swayed, and the roaring throaty breath of the storm teased along the walls and through the slats of the roof.  It was a proper night for writing, and only the words – and the whiskey – could draw him up and out of the cloud of despair that was his constant traveling companion.

Virginia was always on his mind.  Theirs had been a troubled relationship from the beginning, their familial ties, and the girl's age, but he'd seen something in her – some fragile beauty – that completed him.  Now – having filled the hole in his heart, she withered, and he felt the pain like a fist squeezing the light from his world.

If only she'd listen to him.  If only the things he knew – the things he could do – could ease her pain.  There were curatives – elixirs – potions and charms.  He knew he could restore her health, but she would not allow it.  Not at what she considered to be the cost of her soul.  Not if it meant becoming part and parcel to the powers that swam through the darker recesses of his mind.  It was likely that she had trouble deciding if he were evil, or simply mad.

He knew that, despite her wishes, he could save her, but if he did, she would hate him.  She would not be happy, and making her happy was all that he craved.  Instead, she died, and he drank, and he wrote and he prayed that when all the smoke and dust had cleared that something of worth would remain.

A dark shape dropped through the light from the MacReady woman's lantern.  Edgar walked to the window, glanced out, and actually smiled.  He unfastened the sash and lifted the window a crack.  The scents of blooming flowers and impending storm wafted in.  He lifted the window a bit farther, and with a hop, a large crow landed on the windowsill, then dropped into the room with a thud.  It sat glaring at him for a moment, and then, as if satisfied in some way, began to busily and noisily preen its feathers.

"Good evening, Grimm." Edgar said with a slight, mock bow.  "And it is good to see you too.  Perhaps I shall groom my mustache while you are busy, as a show of camaraderie?"

The bird glanced up at him, and then continued working over its tail feathers in complete indifference.

Edgar closed the window and took a seat at the table.  He arranged his papers carefully, gathering those he'd written the night before on top of a larger stack of blank sheets.  He always began by re-reading what he'd just finished.  It served as a quick pre-edit, and it dropped him back into the story with a fresh 'reader's' perspective of the work.
"Perhaps," he said conversationally, "I shall write a story about a bird – a great black one who is too often inattentive.  Grave things might happen to such a creature, don't you think?"

The crow didn't even bother to glance up at this.  Edgar chuckled, and turned to the pages before him.  He had meant to write a story of romance and intrigue, but as he read, he saw that – once again – the melancholy that served as his muse had taken over and driven dark spikes between the pages.  It was clear that one lover must die at the hand of the other, and that the mystery would depend on the circumstances.  The young man in the story was quite mad – as was so often the case – mad and absolutely brilliant.  Misunderstood.  Lonely."

You can find more about me, and my books at my website  
Connect with me on Twitter: @David_n_Wilson  
Find me on Facebook 

You can get Nevermore in Hardcover, Trade paperback, all eBook formats and in unabridged Audio (narrated by the talented Gigi Shane) at all the regular outlets.

 To see SLAVE's review go here

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Bring on the Hunter Clan!

First, I’d like to thank Guys Like Romances Too! for having me back again.
Because they have been so kind, today I’m going to give you a never before seen sneak peek at His Silent Mate [Hunter Clan 4] due out August 14th. So enjoy!!!

His Silent Mate [Hunter Clan 4]

Jayden McLeod is used to betrayal. After years spent at the hands of an enemy and unable to speak after his own brother was forced to suppress his voice, he struggles to connect with the people around him. Particularly his mate.
As a Wolf-Shifter/Spirit Mage hybrid, Rhys Scott is used to hiding who he really is. When Rhys learns what the Spirit element has done to his mate, he is hesitant to reveal his true self to Jayden. Like all secrets though, the truth is revealed and Rhys must prove to his mate that he is worth a second chance.
Things become more dangerous when the Clan discovers Potestas is closer than they thought, and are no longer playing by the rules. With new allies and unknown enemies, the pair must learn to trust one another, and except themselves if they stand a chance of surviving.

Panting heavily, Jayden McLeod willed his tired body to keep going as he stumbled over another tree root. His legs throbbed, sweat dripped down his back, and his arms groaned in protest as he picked his younger sister up off the ground again. Neither of them could afford to stop, and as hard as this was on him, he knew Lily must be in agony too.
Just a little bit further.
Jayden still couldn’t believe they had managed to get away. After years of being held by the group, Potestas, their brother Blake had found a way to sneak them onto one of the courier trucks that came in and out of the industrial area Potestas had currently housed themselves in.
As suddenly as the opportunity came, the need to be quick and stealthy meant that they had to leave their brother Derrick behind. Derrick was a little slow after Potestas had messed with his mind too many times. He wasn’t dumb, he just had trouble understanding some things and needed them explained differently. Unfortunately that and his size meant he never would have been capable of sneaking his large, bulking frame onto the truck, and they didn’t have time to explain things to him. His heart clenched at the thought of what those bastards might be doing to his brothers, but he had to focus on Lily. Blake had trusted him to get her somewhere safe.
He knew the general direction he was supposed to head in. Blake had given him vague directions to the Hunter Clan, where they would find their brothers, Sawyer and Riley. Blake told them that Elijah should be there too, and once they got there they would be safe.
Safe? Yeah, feeling real cosy.
Safe wasn’t exactly how Jayden was feeling right now. The outside perimeter of the Hunter Clan was lined with scouts Jayden knew belonged to Potestas. On the grounds of the estate itself, Jayden could hear the howls, shouts, and growls which meant they were in the middle of a battle.
As they crept through the dense bushes surrounding the estate, Jayden made sure he and Lily kept out of sight.
“Jayden? How are we supposed to get past those scouts and the fighting?” Lily’s voice trembled as she asked.
He frowned. Lily had a point. Staring down at her, seeing the fear in her eyes, made him mad. Not being able to use words to comfort her, made him angrier. Potestas had taken a lot from him, but they day they forced Blake to suppress his voice was one of the worst because now he couldn’t even reassure his terrified sister. Jayden felt useless, not even being able to shout for help, and he would never feel whole again.
Damn Potestas!
Unable to do anything else, Jayden pressed a finger to his lips and jerked his head to the left, indicating for his sister to follow him. As they neared what looked like the main house Jayden cringed. There was a hell of a lot of fighting going on, and Potestas looked like they were winning.
Christ. I hope Sawyer and Riley are okay.
Holding Lily tight to him, Jayden clamped his hand over her mouth when she let out a squeak. They could not afford to be found yet, especially when a Warlock stepped out behind the largest Wolf Jayden had ever seen, raising his hand with an energy blast. Jayden panicked for just a second before another large Wolf, not as big as the first but close, leapt onto the Warlock. The brown and gray animal took the Warlock down then jumped back, darting away from a blast.
Jayden held his breath as the Wolf darted out of the way of each strike, landing a few blows with his claws. Watching them fight, he knew that the two Wolves he had seen so far must be high up in the Clan, and wondered if either of them were Jacob Hunter, Kayan and Sawyer’s mate.
When the Warlock swayed on the spot, Jayden took a step back further into the bushes, not wanting Lily to see the Wolf strike his enemy down. He knew why the Wolf would have to, but didn’t want Lily to witness such a thing. She had seen enough.
Unfortunately his foot must have landed on a stick because he heard it crack and both men shot their gaze in his direction.
Oh shit! We are so dead.

Dmitri’s Little Spitfire [Hunter Clan 3]
Elijah Collins is ashamed. Used to hurt his friends by Potestas, he now finds it hard to even look someone in the face. Especially Dmitri, his mate. When a truth about Elijah is discovered, Potestas also find out. Now that they know his true worth, he becomes an even bigger target than before.
Dimitri Kalas has always prided himself on being calm and in control. It is his job to help protect his Clan, and most importantly his mate. But when he finds out that the people responsible for hurting his Kayan’s mate have also been abusing his mate, he becomes incensed.
Will Dimitri be able to convince his mate that he is worth love and forgiveness? Or will Elijah allow his guilt to consume him and turn himself over to the enemy in order to keep his friends safe?