Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Pretas: Excerpt #nanowrimo


Hi loves,


I thought I would share a little bit of the WIP I've been playing with for NaNo this year. The working title is PRETAS, and it features a younger protagonist than I usually write, but I'm enjoying the story. I've gotten to delve a little deeper into Asian folklore and mythology for this one, which is always fun. I don't want to say too much and give anything away, but let's just say that Gabriel has not been a good boy! 



Summary

At seventeen, Samara McDowell knows all about making difficult decisions. She'd had to do so every day since her father died in a car accident and her mother began drowning her sorrows in a bottle, leaving Samara to care for her little brother, Sammy.

But nothing ever prepared Samara to deal with Sammy's disappearance... or her suspicion that Gabriel Hall - the gorgeous new boy across the street - had something to do with it. Nor is she prepared to deal with the fact that she's falling in love with Gabriel despite her better judgment.

Strange things happen when he's around. Frightening shadows haunt his steps. Animals refuse to go near him. And that's just the beginning. Gabriel appears out of nowhere. His eyes are coal black. His skin is like ice. And sometimes, Samara swears she can see right through him. 

When she learns who, and what, Gabriel really is and what he's doing in her small town, she realizes she has no choice but to let him help. He may be the only one who can save her little brother. But doing so will destroy any hope Gabriel has of ever becoming human again.
Can she trust him to make that sacrifice and help her bring Sammy home, or will Gabriel betray her in the end?



Excerpt

Cicada song and the sticky Southern heat hit me like a wall the moment I opened Granny Anne's front door. Within seconds, my red Piggly Wiggly polo clung to my body, trapped against my skin in a vacuum seal of humidity and sweat. I grimaced, stepping out onto the front porch. The old wood wobbled beneath my feet, but held firm.
 
One whole step on the porch had splintered, leaving a steep gap right through the middle. The pavement beyond had long ago broken apart. Tufts of dying grass and withered weeds hung limply in the cracks and crevices, pitfalls waiting to trip those brave enough to traverse the ruins in the dark of night.
 
Lucky for me, the early summer sun still sat low on the horizon, slowly sinking toward its nightly cradle. Sadly, the dying day had done nothing to ease the pervasive heat. Not that I was surprised or anything. Even nights were miserable in mid-June in Arkansas.
 
"Thanks for watching Sammy," I called over my shoulder to Granny Anne, holding the door wide for my little brother.
 
He poked his head out, his green eyes full of discontent behind his wire-rimmed frames. His strawberry blond hair was mussed atop his head. A spot of chocolate dotted his freckled nose. He held the half-eaten cookie clutched in his hands. His Spiderman backpack was slung across one shoulder, the bottom bulging beneath the weight of whatever he'd crammed inside.
 
"Anytime, Samara," Granny Anne shouted back from the depths of her worn little house. "Tell your mama I said hello."
 
"Yeah, right," I muttered beneath my breath, letting the storm door screech closed behind me.
 
"Mama's home?" Sammy perked up, his frail shoulders going back as he lifted his head from his sandwich.
 
I shrugged, unwilling to get his hopes up. I'd learned long ago not to even bother counting on her to be present, but Sammy was only eight. He hadn't quite come to terms with the fact that she preferred the company of Jose, Jim, and Jack to her own children. At seventeen, I had no such illusions. She'd been a functioning alcoholic since our father died in a car accident almost four years ago.
 
Sammy didn't really remember Dad, but I did. He'd been the backbone of our family. Loyal, hardworking, honest… he'd actually cared about us. And laughed. Our mother had been pretty decent then, too. But things were different now. He was dead, and Mother was a ghost of the vivacious woman she'd been then. She cried a lot. Drank even more.
 
After two years, I no longer held out hope that would suddenly change.
 
Sammy's face fell, his little body seeming to fold in on itself.
 
My heart twisted at the sight.
 
"Hey," I said, reaching out to tug a lock of his overly long blond hair. "We'll watch Johnny Test and eat ice cream."
 
"Watched it today," he mumbled, shuffling his feet as we traversed the rickety porch.
 
I waited until he jumped across the broken step before following him down.
 
"We'll think of something to do," I promised him, false cheer in my voice.
 
This time, he shrugged.
 
Granny Anne's dog, Rufus, sat up as we approached the only shade tree in the yard, his tail thumping against the ground. He focused hopeful eyes on Sammy's dinner, panting.
 
"Don't-"
 
Too late.
 
Sammy tossed the half-eaten peanut butter sandwich to Rufus, who barked once in thanks and then inhaled it in two bites, his tail wagging.
 
"Granny Anne said not to feed him scraps, remember?" I said to Sammy.
 
"Forgot. Sorry."
 
I opened my mouth to fuss at him, then closed it again, not bothering. The kid loved Rufus, and Rufus loved scraps. There was no stopping the inevitable.

****



Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Ragnarok Prophesies Announcement


Hi loves!

As I'm sure you're already aware... it's been a while since I had an update for you here. I opted to take a step back from trying to do all of the things and focus for a little while on real life responsibilities and recharging.

A lot was going on that I wasn't ready to share.
 
For starters, I was promoted in July of last year, and now oversee and work alongside two shifts of dispatchers. It's a lot of long hours, late night phone calls, and business as usual. It's been a learning experience, for sure.

In December, SS and I lost another pregnancy. We weren't trying, but we were crazy excited, and really devastated. We've been addressing my medical issues in the months since, and are ready to start trying soon.

I lost 45 pounds! It's taken a LOT of changes, and I'm not finished yet. But I am super proud of myself and of all the work I've put in.

I also had surgery in October to fix my shoulder after years of fighting it. Recovery has been easier than anticipated in some respects, and a lot harder in others. Hopefully we're on the right track now. It'll be amazing to have two fully functioning shoulders again. This injury 'ish is for the birds.

Writing had to take the back burner for a while, but I am back in action now, and have some things to tell you guys.

I recently made the difficult decision to pull the Ragnarok Prophesies series from its current publisher. I won't go into all the reasons why this was the right decision, but after a series of issues with their handling of FLAME and fulfilling contractual obligations for all of their authors, I absolutely believe it was best for the series and for myself to terminate the contract.

I've put so much into this series, and I will always fight for it, even when doing so means making the tough decisions.

That said, this isn't the end for the series!

I'm already hard at work, trying to find a new home for Arionna and Dace. And I am EXCITED about getting their story back out there for all of you. The right home is out there, and I will find it. Trust.

I will also be finishing the War Scrolls series, the Teplo Trilogy, and then focusing on a few new projects I've been fleshing out in my downtime. And while I'm doing all of that, I'll be diving back into blogging and all those other fun things I've missed so much!

I hope you will all come along for this part of the journey with me.

xoxo,
Ayden








Tuesday, February 21, 2017

FLAME by @AKMorgen is Now Available! #ragnarokprophesies

I'm very excited to announce that the long awaited (and much anticipated!) third book of the Amazon Bestselling RAGNAROK PROPHESIES series has finally arrived! Join Arionna Jacobs and Dace Matthews as they race to stop the apocalypse in this intense and emotional series.

Read on below for all the details, including a giveaway!



SUMMARY

Who do you trust when betrayal threatens to destroy everything you hold dear?

When Arionna Jacobs fled town in a desperate bid to save Dace Matthews, she never expected the chaos she would leave in her wake. Now her closest friend is dead, and another is missing, forcing Ari to return to face the devastating consequences of her actions and the broken boy she left behind.

Her problems are only just beginning.

Even as her bond with Dace grows stronger, Arionna finds herself weakening when Freki's cage shatters. Fighting the wolf for control is tearing her apart piece by piece. And at every turn, she finds that those she's put her faith in aren't who they seem, bringing her face to face with Sköll and Hati. As the depth of their betrayal is revealed, Freki spirals out of control, and Arionna must face her greatest fear: losing herself to the fierce wolf within.

The world balances on the edge of a blade, and one wrong move will destroy it all.

With few allies she can trust and little choice left, Arionna must decide between the lives of her friends and her own future with the alpha she loves. Will she be able to stand firm for the sake of the world, or will she falter in the face of defeat?
 


BOOK LINKS:

AMAZON | GOODREADS | BARNES AND NOBLE 


EXCERPT

"Arionna, dammit, wake up."

Unseen hands gripped my upper arms, shaking me. A familiar voice called my name over and over. Furious howls ripped through the air.

None of those sounds made sense to me.

I felt different, like I'd been taken apart and put back together in the wrong order. Everything hurt. My body ached, muscles locked tight in protest. My head throbbed. Each painful pulse rattled against my skull, sending ripples down my neck and into my back.

I groaned and rolled onto my side.

The hands shaking me relaxed.

I fought to open my eyes, then blinked, confused. Worn brown carpet scratched against the side of my face. The bottom edge of a pale blue bed-sham fluttered inches from me. Dust bunnies and small pieces of plastic were strewn beneath the sagging bed. A table and two chairs were grouped on the other side. A crack ran up the leg of one chair, splitting the wood.

None of the room looked familiar.

Where am I?

The voice calling my name stopped mid-shout and sighed.

Oh, thank god, he said.

For what? I wondered, marveling that the words came from inside my mind, but didn't belong to me. How was that possible?

I couldn't place the soft, silky tones either, but they made my stomach flip and my heart flutter. I knew the speaker. At least I thought I did. Before I could ask him who he was or how he spoke in my head, someone blew out a sharp breath. This time, the sound didn't come from inside.

"Finally," that second voice said.

Nope. Definitely not coming from my mind.

I rolled my eyes toward the relieved sound, and then frowned at the guy leaning over me. Long, dark hair hung in his face. His eyes were black, and full of concern. His features were sharp, severe, but handsome.

This time I was certain; I knew this guy.

"Ronan," I said. His name was Ronan LaCrosse, and mine was… Arionna. Yes, Arionna Jacobs. Memory began to slowly trickle back in. We were at a motel in Illinois, looking for someone. And the howls were coming from Fuki, the little wolf we'd brought with us, though I couldn't see him.

Where was he?

I tried to figure out why I was on the floor, but came up with a big blank.

"What happened?" I asked, looking up at Ronan.

He held out a hand for me, then pulled me into a sitting position.

The room tilted before straightening again. I clutched my head in my hands, groaning. When the initial wave of nausea passed, I tilted my head up slowly so I could see Ronan. "Did I hit my head?" I asked, trying to blink away the dark spots floating in my peripheral.

"You don't remember?" He narrowed his eyes, tilting his head to the side like a raven assessing me.

I scooted back against the edge of the bed, frowning.

What was I supposed to remember?



GIVEAWAY


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A.K. Morgen is the Amazon Bestselling author of the Ragnarök Prophesies series. She lives in the heart of Arkansas with her childhood sweetheart/husband of thirteen years, and their six furry minions. When not writing, she spends her time hiking, reading, volunteering, causing mischief, and building a Spork army. Ayden graduated summa cum laude with her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and Forensic Psychology in 2009 before going on to complete her graduate degree in CJ and Law. She currently puts her education to use in the social services and CJ field. 

Ayden also writes New Adult and contemporary romance under the penname Ayden K. Morgen.

You can find her on 
Twitter, Facebook, or via her website at http://akmorgen.com.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

FLAME (The Ragnarok Prophesies) Goodreads Giveaway #wariscoming

Hi lovelies!

For those of you who have not heard, #wariscoming!

FLAME (The Ragnarok Prophesies: Book Three) releases on February 21st, 2017 from Curiosity Quills Press! To celebrate the upcoming release, we're giving away copies of FLAME via Goodreads.

Check out all the details and enter the giveaway below. And while you're at it, don't forget to add FLAME to your TBR list on Goodreads. :)




SUMMARY


Who do you trust when betrayal threatens to destroy everything you hold dear?

When Arionna Jacobs fled town in a desperate bid to save Dace Matthews, she never expected the chaos she would leave in her wake. Now her closest friend is dead, and another is missing, forcing Ari to return to face the devastating consequences of her actions and the broken boy she left behind.

Her problems are only just beginning.

Even as her bond with Dace grows stronger, Arionna finds herself weakening when Freki's cage shatters. Fighting the wolf for control is tearing her apart piece by piece. And at every turn, she finds that those she's put her faith in aren't who they seem, bringing her face to face with Sköll and Hati. As the depth of their betrayal is revealed, Freki spirals out of control, and Arionna must face her greatest fear: losing herself to the fierce wolf within.

The world balances on the edge of a blade, and one wrong move will destroy it all.

With few allies she can trust and little choice left, Arionna must decide between the lives of her friends and her own future with the alpha she loves. Will she be able to stand firm for the sake of the world, or will she falter in the face of defeat?
 





EXCERPT

"Arionna, dammit, wake up."

Unseen hands gripped my upper arms, shaking me. A familiar voice called my name over and over. Furious howls ripped through the air.

None of those sounds made sense to me.

I felt different, like I'd been taken apart and put back together in the wrong order. Everything hurt. My body ached, muscles locked tight in protest. My head throbbed. Each painful pulse rattled against my skull, sending ripples down my neck and into my back.

I groaned and rolled onto my side.

The hands shaking me relaxed.

I fought to open my eyes, then blinked, confused. Worn brown carpet scratched against the side of my face. The bottom edge of a pale blue bed-sham fluttered inches from me. Dust bunnies and small pieces of plastic were strewn beneath the sagging bed. A table and two chairs were grouped on the other side. A crack ran up the leg of one chair, splitting the wood.

None of the room looked familiar.

Where am I?

The voice calling my name stopped mid-shout and sighed.

Oh, thank god, he said.

For what? I wondered, marveling that the words came from inside my mind, but didn't belong to me. How was that possible?

I couldn't place the soft, silky tones either, but they made my stomach flip and my heart flutter. I knew the speaker. At least I thought I did. Before I could ask him who he was or how he spoke in my head, someone blew out a sharp breath. This time, the sound didn't come from inside.

"Finally," that second voice said.

Nope. Definitely not coming from my mind.

I rolled my eyes toward the relieved sound, and then frowned at the guy leaning over me. Long, dark hair hung in his face. His eyes were black, and full of concern. His features were sharp, severe, but handsome.

This time I was certain; I knew this guy.

"Ronan," I said. His name was Ronan LaCrosse, and mine was… Arionna. Yes, Arionna Jacobs. Memory began to slowly trickle back in. We were at a motel in Illinois, looking for someone. And the howls were coming from Fuki, the little wolf we'd brought with us, though I couldn't see him.

Where was he?

I tried to figure out why I was on the floor, but came up with a big blank.

"What happened?" I asked, looking up at Ronan.

He held out a hand for me, then pulled me into a sitting position.

The room tilted before straightening again. I clutched my head in my hands, groaning. When the initial wave of nausea passed, I tilted my head up slowly so I could see Ronan. "Did I hit my head?" I asked, trying to blink away the dark spots floating in my peripheral.

"You don't remember?" He narrowed his eyes, tilting his head to the side like a raven assessing me.

I scooted back against the edge of the bed, frowning.

What was I supposed to remember?



GOODREADS GIVEAWAY



Goodreads Book Giveaway

Flame by A.K. Morgen

Flame

by A.K. Morgen

Giveaway ends February 28, 2017.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway