July 28, 2017

Deleted Scene

It happens. And when it does, writers have to wince and hopefully fix it. 

Readers are smart cookies. They notice things, especially when there’s a kink in the flow of events. Details. And I had some very smart readers who pointed out the discrepancy of the urn at the end of Elemental Tears, and the tomb in Elemental Dreams. 

So I went back to my original files, looked at the final and realized…oops. I deleted out what I thought was a redundant scene and didn’t realize there was a bit of vital information at the end of it. Instead of trying to put it back in and re-upload the book, I figured I’d just put it here for anyone to read. 

Sooo….without further talking, here is the scene, complete with mistakes, is the deleted scene. This would have been included at the back of Chapter One, after Tas and Bastien’s scene. 

***

“I’m not saying you’re wrong, shugar,” Arden Vervain said in her sugary tone as she prepared a cup of tea from the silver service Cerridwen brought into the parlor. She and her nephew, Kyle Kendrick, had moved from the main room where she held her meetings to this back room she had set up for less formal events.

Kyle had come by to see Lizzie and insisted on carrying her around the house. Arden preferred the baby stay in the upstairs rooms she’d had prepared. No one knew the child existed, much less even dreamed the Arden Vervain had taken a child under her care. The secrecy was to protect Sam’s baby from people who just wouldn’t understand the gift of a child. Especially a hybrid Witch and Dragon.

She stirred the now mocha colored tea with a small spoon and leaned her elbows on her knees. She watched Kyle balance the child in one hand while making tickle gestures with his other. Lizzie laughed and cooed with her adopted Uncle Kyle. Scenes like this endured him more to Arden. She regretted having never taken the proper interest in Kyle’s upbringing when her sister dismissed him because he was born male. It never dawned on the idiot that she had indeed given birth to the Witch she always wanted.

But then… Arden believed the best was yet to come from Kyle Kendrick.

“Then what are you saying?” Kyle said, though his attention was solely on Lizzie.

“I’m saying I think you’re reading too much into things. Yes, I’ll admit that Sam’s death makes no sense. That it just…the whole thing seemed a bit too…” she shrugged. “Convoluted.”

He did look at her then. “So, you did notice it too?”

“I notice a lot of things, Kyle. Just…not all of them mean anything. Sometimes tragedy is just…tragedy.” She sipped her tea as she watched them.

They stood in front of the fireplace. Arden had recently had the flu cleaned and the brick brought up to code so she could actually build a fire in it and maybe rock little Lizzie to sleep one day. Maybe even sit with her and ready her Yule stories the Oak and Holly Kings.

Yes…this child would be raised properly. By a proper Witch. And she would learn everything she could about how great her mother was.

And…would have been.

Arden focused on the urn at the center of the mantel. The ornate thing had become a symbol for the entire family. The container of Sam’s ashes. For a death that… “But it just makes no sense,” she said as she stared at it. She agreed with him.

What happened to Samantha was more than a tragedy. It was something that seemed too…

Kyle, still balancing Lizzie in one hand, picked up the urn and held it. Arden set her tea on the tray and stood. “I get nervous when people pick that up, Kyle. Go ahead and put it back.”

He lifted the urn and then lowered it a few times. “It feels light,” he said.

“It’s just ashes, Kyle. Go ahead and put it down.”

Kyle glanced at her and made a face. “Okay…keep your panties on.”

But as he reached up to return the urn to the mantel, Lizzie moved her body at that moment, performing one of her body stretches as she flailed her arms and nearly moved out of Kyle’s arms. He made a noise and attempted to set the urn back. But it was obvious he was more focused on not dropping Lizzie as he released the urn.

It came down on the mantel at an angle, bounced and then rolled off and hit the hard wood floor beneath, and shattered into fifty or so pieces.

Arden closed her eyes and waited. She was afraid this would happen, which was another reason she’d moved the urn into this room and not kept it in her parlor.

Kyle’s steps could be heard through her closed eyelids so she opened them. He was staring down at the pieces. “Arden…”

“Yes, Kyle?”

“It’s empty.”

She didn’t say anything.

He looked at her. “The urn is fucking empty. Where are Sam’s ashes?”

Arden had told herself to prepare speeches for this event. And she scolded herself for not buying the heavy metal urn and not the ceramic. But then her business sense had been remiss to buy an urn that would sit empty.

Always.

“Kyle—”

“Now, Arden. Where are Sam’s ashes?”

“Nowhere.”

“No…” He pursed his lips. “Did they mess up at the crematorium? Did they confuse hers with someone else?”

“No.” Arden made a painful face.

The two stood facing one another. Aunt and nephew, until finally, she said, “Sam was never cremated.”

Kyle just stared at her. Lizzie made a few upset noises so Kyle bounced her up and down. “Go on.”

“I don’t know why I thought it was a good idea to lie about the urn. I felt that we all needed something to focus on. Something we could bond over.”

“This,” Kyle hefted the child. “Is enough to bond over. Where is Sam’s body?”

“Crwys took it.”

“Crwys…” Kyle visually counted to five and said, “When?”

“When she died. We were so focused on the egg that we didn’t notice what was happening. Crwys took her that day and we haven’t seen either since.” She sighed. “I bought a plot in one of the cemeteries as well, just in case this sort of thing happened. Contingencies.”

“I see.” Kyle looked at Lizzie. “You think he buried her somewhere?”

“Levi said he did. So did Tas. So…I think it was fair to give him that.”

“You know we would have all understood, right?” Kyle looked at her. “You need to make sure everyone knows.”

Arden plopped back down on the couch. “I will. And Kyle…” she looked up at him. “I believe you. Something wrong happened. Something that shouldn’t have. Sam’s life line was long and unwieldy at times, but it was long.”

“Someone took her out, Arden. And I want to find out who. And why.”

May 30, 2017

The Finale

Feels weird typing that word. Finale. I haven’t officially ended a series before. Even Zoë has a paused ending (for now, anyway). 

But it’s time to send the gang off with a HEA and start on a new series, which I announced in my last post. I have loved these characters, and they are a part of me, as they are a part of the readers. There will be more books. Two more, in the future. One with Levi, and one with Jack and Kyle. And as long as you’re part of the newsletter, I’ll keep you informed when those books are ready. 

I hope everyone has enjoyed the series as much as I have. I loved watching it grow and change. And I have thoroughly enjoyed comments from the readers, those who took the time to contact me, whether with typos, French corrections, or even just to say how much they love the characters. 

Thank you all. I only hope you enjoy this end as much as I enjoyed writing it (with a hitch in the back of my throat). 

My WIP right now: 

 

Before I embark on the new series, Oak & Ash & Thorn, I’m finishing up editing and little bits and tweaks on BOOK ONE of The Prophecy’s Edge (this is a duology). This is a Fantasy Book, or what I believe is now called Secondary World? Not sure about the tags anymore. 

Most importantly, it’s about ELVES. And it’s set to release with a book bundle first, exclusive for a time, before it will go live on all retailers. 

So…my first attempt at a FANTASY.  ;) 

A Note on the CAST IN SHADOW Series

Book 3, Smoke And Mirrors (A J Brahms), is moved to a possible June release. This is because book 2, Something In The Water, is still in Kindle Unlimited. I want to advertise the series, and release book 3, but the way Amazon is running KU right now, any drastic uptick in sales and they shut down your account, thinking you’re a bot, cheating their page read system. I just can’t afford them to make that decision for me. 

So, I’m waiting until I can pull the book from KU and then I’ll start up the regular releases again.

May 10, 2017

Update, Dreams, Pen Name and New Series!

A few months back, I wrote up a post about filling the well. Or was it the garden? o.O 

So I took time off to do just that, by reading, binging shows, movies and gaming. Miiiiight have gone a bit overboard on the gaming. I’m a Final Fantasy fan and can’t help myself with that game, or anything in the franchise. 

What I learned in that time was…I hadn’t learned BALANCE. You know… mitigating out time for both without over-indulging on one. Before, in 2015, it’d been all writing. And it was successful. Until I burned out. In the time running up to restarting getting more Eldritch Files finished, I’ve had to learn to BALANCE the garden grooming with the producing. 

Not saying it’s been easy. 

Newp. Mostly because I over-filled it. Meaning I have a whole bunch of ideas (popcorn kittens) jumping about and yelling “Pick Me! Pick Me!”

But, to that later. 

Elemental Dreams, the Finale. 

It’s taking me a bit longer to finish this than I’d hoped. Not because of gaming too much, but because I wanted to be careful. I wanted to make sure that everyone reading it would have a sense of completion, and a sense of happy. Gotta have the happy (especially after book 8). 

My hope is to have the book published and in your hands this month, but I’m taking my time to give the readers, and those who have enjoyed the series, something enjoyable. 

Oak & Ash & Thorn

Didn’t think I’d ever get to this one, did ya? Uh huh. It’s been there, ever since The Morrigan was published in the anthology Once Upon A Curse. I hired Lou Harper to create a new set of covers, and I have the first one ready to show as proof to all those awesome readers who emailed me

…IT’S COMING! 

My plan is to have a multi-release on this series. I’ve got my fingers crossed, cause that’s a lot of writing as quick as I can so that everyone can read the series all at once. How many books?

Not sure yet, but I’ve commissioned 3 covers…

And now…for a Pen Name…

Getting back to the “Pick Me!” I needed to write something a bit different before getting the last books finished for The Eldritch Files

And out of that need came a new idea, coupled with an old idea I’d been stoking. Part of that idea was brain stormed with the help of a fellow writer. And we created a new series, gave it a pen name and published it. After the first book was finished, and the second one almost done, the partnership dissolved (in a nice and legal fashion) and I kept the pen name and books. And since I love the character and the series idea, I decided to keep writing them. 

Originally I published them in Kindle Unlimited, and quickly discovered I wasn’t that happy about it. I prefer to have my books wide, meaning if you read on Kobo, you can buy it on Kobo, Or if you like iBooks, you can read it there. 

Sooo… the first book in this series is finally wide and available for .99¢ in several places. If you can’t find it on your favorite platform, let old A J Brahms know: 

Yep. That’s me. 

Book 2, Something In The Water, will be wide at the end of June, but it is available at Amazon for now. Book 3, Smoke And Mirrors, will go wide from the start. 

Here is a link to the Author Site, A J Brahms. There is a separate Newsletter, and a separate website. Cause, pen name. But it’s me. 

I hope you enjoy. And I’ll be keeping you up to date!  :)  Any questions just post them and I’ll get to them soon as I can. In between writing sessions.