Happy Birthday to Me

Since today is my birthday, I decided to let a few of my friends from Facebook interview me.  Here are their questions.

What do you feel is the hardest part of the publishing process? (From Vania Rheault)

Rejection – The hardest part for me is finding a home for finished work.   I haven’t been brave enough to enter into the Self-Publishing world because that all seems hard to me.   So finding a home for whatever completed project I have is hard in the sense a certain amount of prediction for agents and editors on what readers may want a year or more out makes it difficult.  I’ll send out a query and then get a rejection and if I’m lucky they will tell me why.  Sometimes I get a form letter or even worse that they liked the writing but it wasn’t a good fit.   

How are you just so damn adorable all the time? Inquiring minds want to know. (From Lyn Armstrong)

Lyn is biased, her and maybe my husband.  I love and miss you, lady. 

Do you work plots out with writing buddies or plot all by yourself? (From Marie Johnston)

Normally, I plot by myself.  But recently I asked for some input on a finished Regency I just finished and my local critique group helped me come up with a plot (it involves murder) that I will weave back in through the story.  This isn’t uncommon for me to finish a manuscript and then change one, maybe two, things, and then have to layer those elements back in. 

When you write so many books, what’s your strategy for keeping plots, characters, and settings fresh? (from Natalie Pierce)

It helps that I write in a few different sub-genres of romance.  Once you change the setting everything else can be fresh or new based on a new place or time.  I have started keeping series bibles so I can remember how old someone is at story X so I make sure to age them by story Y. I usually keep these in either Pinterest, Google Keep, or in a Notebook. 

Happy birthday! Let’s see. I’d love to know more about how you got started writing stories. How much of real life is included in your books? Do you have other business ideas you might work on in the future? (from A. Catherine Noon)

Figures A. Catherine Noon would have the most questions.   Here we go.  

I have been writing since childhood, before my grandmother passed she gave me a collection of stories I wrote for her about the various mythical holiday creatures, like the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, A Leprechaun trying to find Baby New Year.   Unfortunately, they didn’t find him because I had only gotten as far as writing their origin stories.  I loved info dumps even as a child. 

I include much of real life in my contemporaries, including some of my friends (you know who you are).  Of course, I changed their names to protect the not so innocent.  I’ve used their professional knowledge among which include a pilot, an architect, a nurse, firemen, and of course a writer.   Most of my paranormal, sci-fi, and fantasy stories are entirely fiction.  

Future Business Projects – Writing Wise I’m working on my Brave the Elements Series – Wind Resistant is my Nano project.  I will be querying my Regency this month and maybe a bit in November.   I take December off because I find I need the break for the holidays.  Non-writing wise – I’ve thrown my hat in on a contest in ND pairing artists and writers.  Long Term I’m hoping to get a North Dakota Writers Conference so if you are thinking about something like that my fellow writers, let me know.   There are far more of us than the world knows about. 

I’m wondering what percent of your writing is actually non-fiction, in a fictional book. (Brian Daly)

It depends on the fiction.  In my Steampunk Series, I’d say 50%.  I altered parts of the timeline significantly.  

My Regency is fairly historically accurate but I did change a few things – my hero knows cane fighting which isn’t really a thing until closer to the Victorian period and was invented in France, not England.  So those are pretty liberal. My Contemporaries including my paranormal books are about 25% fiction accounting for characters and the mythology of fairies.   But the career choices are based on people I know. 

And I would say my Post-Apocalyptic books are 75% fiction the only real elements being geography and locations in the future. 🙂 

I hope you’ve enjoyed this Q&A.  If I missed your question here leave a comment below and I’ll try to answer it.  ~Tina

Cover Reveal – Z and the Firewolf

Title: Z and the Firewolf 

Series:  Dealing with the Dead Book Three

Author: Tina Holland

Genre: SFFP, Post-Apocalyptic, Erotic Romance

Release Date: May 12, 2020

Publisher: Book Boutiques

Cover Design: Valerie Tibbs, Tibbs Design

Z-and-the-Firewolf-Mockup1

Blurb:

When the Phoenix Lunar Coven hires Maximillian Z to retrieve their most valued treasure from an evil skin-walker, they expect results. As a hardened mercenary hunted by his own clan, Z expects trouble but not the feelings evoked by Princess Tierra. Tierra is no ordinary witch, she’s a werewolf and a phoenix.

Tierra has gone into heat as with every cycle of the Lunar Eclipse. Even though she’s mated, she must fulfill her duty. Z refuses to return Tierra and has every intention of keeping her for himself.

It’s a race against the moon – for whoever kills the Firewolf on the Lunar Eclipse will inherit the powers of the Coven. With the skin-walker searching for Tierra and Z’s clan chasing him, will they make it before the eclipse? Or will everything go up in flames for Z and the Firewolf?

Excerpt:

Maximilian Z gripped the binoculars tighter as the skin-walker caressed the beautiful and unconscious Tierra. 

Z had watched the deteriorating Casablanca hotel for two days before realizing his best bet was to grab the princess after a pain session with Limikkin. He was relieved Tierra healed at a rapid rate. When her coven hired him, he assumed she was a witch like her mother. He wondered if she was an immortal to heal so fast. The first time he saw her endure such torture, Z thought he’d be bringing a body back to the coven, but she returned unmarked the following morning, and again today. Z planned to move north toward the mountains outside of Sin Vegas as soon as Tierra was retrieved. They could make good time if he didn’t have to wait for her to recover from the damage inflicted during sessions with the skinwalker.

Soon Limikkin would call for her transfer. Z leaped toward the stairwell, rushing to the opposite building. He needed to arrive at the lobby before the coyotes took her to the lower level safe. Once she was locked in there, a significant amount of patience–or serious explosives–would be required to get her out. Z had neither, and he dared not risk a confrontation with Limikkin. The skin-walker had existed for at least a millennia, and his dark magic was best avoided. Z’s best course was to take on the three coyotes transferring her. Not the best odds, but he never liked good odds anyway; it seemed unfair.

Z continued down the stairs two at a time, knowing he wasn’t going to make it. He reached the eighth floor, then leaped down the abandoned elevator shaft.  Z barely noticed the impact on his aging joints as he hit the bottom and dashed across the desolate street. He arrived in the once-opulent lobby before the shifters reached the foyer. He heard them coming; the animals’ movements were noisier than hell.

“She smells good,” he heard one dog say.

Z had no idea. His sense of smell was severely damaged, and he could only register the most pungent odors. He took a double-edged boomerang out of his pocket and tossed it, slicing the cables to the cameras in the lobby before the sharp disc returned to his Kevlar-gloved hand. 

“Put her on the sofa, over here. Let’s have a taste,” another coyote suggested. 

“But Limikkin?” the third finally spoke. 

“He won’t know. She’ll be healed by tomorrow. We can’t eat her flesh. I’m sure he would notice.” The second voice was almost shaking in anticipation. 

Z watched as they moved the princess to the nearest leather couch. They stopped, dropping her on the cracked leather. Their inattention to the task assigned was the break he needed. He’d be able to sneak up on them. 

“Let’s take her!”It was the first who spoke, tufts of fur sticking out of his scalp in patches. 

Z didn’t like this at all. If they raped her, they could change, and full shifters were a lot harder to fight off. Damn it all to Hell.
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Cover Reveal – Beauty is a Beast

Title: Beauty is a Beast

Series:  Dealing with the Dead Book Two

Author: Tina Holland

Genre: SFFP, Post-Apocalyptic, Erotic Romance

Release Date: April 6, 2020

Publisher: Book Boutiques

Cover Design: Valerie Tibbs

Blurb:

Welcome to the future! The year is 3025, and humans are fast becoming extinct. Nizhoni of Mojave Earth Clan knows her spirit guide will protect by giving her the power of the wolf. When she unwittingly bites another human, she flees.

Michael of the Air Clan has searched for the woman he calls Beauty; the one who turned him into a creature of the moon. When he finds her living among the Mojave, he believes he can finally claim her. There’s only one problem. She’s already married.

Together Nizhoni and Michael must battle her former lover, the Yee Naaldlooshi, or feared skin-walker. The fate of their love and humankind hang in the balance. If Beauty can’t have her mate and save the world, she’s going to be a real Beast.

Excerpt:

“Who are you, and what do you want with me?”

“My name is Michael. I want to help you. Are you wondering how you got here?”

“Yes.”

“Flesh eaters surrounded you. I fear you were in no shape to fend them off. You had a terrible fever. Your temperature remained high for two full days and only just broke last night.”

“So it’s over.” Nizhoni wondered how suddenly the changes in her body would appear. Days? Weeks? Hours? She wasn’t sure.

“Yes.”

“Were any animals nearby?” Perhaps if she knew what kind of animal had chosen her would give a clue as to how much time she had left.

“Other than the zombies? No.”

Nizhoni wondered what creature guided this man to her. Had he followed her spirit guide? What would she become now that her change was over? Nizhoni held so many questions and had no one to answer them. She leaned back against the down pillows and released a sigh.

“May I ask your name?”

Nizhoni paused a moment.

“Do you remember it?” He leaned forward.

Nizhoni did not care to share too much information with Michael—the stranger. “What have you called me?”

He looked down, but not before the blood crept up his neck.

“What?” She was unable to keep the curious tone out of her voice.

“I’ve been calling you Beauty.”

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