The comparisons between the two series are numerous: The battles, blood, feuds, death, betrayal, and the politics. The subplots and subterfuge in Vikings were as riveting as what held my attention in Spartacus. Though what solidified the appeal of the show was Lagertha Lothbok, (actress Kathryn Winnick)
wife of Ragnar, a mighty Earl.
Lagertha is a shield maiden, a warrior. She can wield a sword, hoist a shield, and kill without mercy. She is as fierce as any man, and can bring to pain in any battle. She takes no shit from anyone, including her husband who she eventually leaves when he decides the one son they share isn’t enough. Ragnar decides to take a new wife. Lagertha packs up, leaves with her son, remarries, and becomes an Earl herself.
A fitting character arc for a smart, loyal woman who fears only losing her child, and will fight to keep what she has gained. Kathryn Winnick brings her martial arts talents, beauty, and vulnerability to her portrayal of the Lagertha that captures my imagination.
I want to imbue the many facets of Lagertha’s character to my heroines, the value she places on herself, her compassion for Ragnar’s new wife and their children, leadership of her clan, the respect she has earned by being who she is. Kathryn Winnick makes it look easy, hopefully I can do the same.
I anxiously await the third season of this riveting drama. 2015 is too far away.
The Tokyo District Court had recently ordered two companies that digitize customers’ print books to stop operations and pay a total of 1.4 million yen (over in US$14,000) in damages. The two companies, Sundream Co. in Tokyo’s Minato Ward and Doraibareggi Japan in Tokyo’s Katsushika Ward, offer a service called “jisui” – literally “cooking for oneself” – alluding to the act of making one’s own electronic booksby scanning print copies into a computer so that users can transfer that new “cooked” e-book to their electronic devices.
In a landmark first such ruling handed down by the courts, Presiding Judge Shigeru Osuga stated, “There’s a chance the companies are violating copyrights.” Seven writers, including novelists Jiro Asada and Keigo Higashino, as well as manga author Kenshi Hirokane, had filed the lawsuit against the two companies, arguing that the two companies were in violation of the Copyright Law, and demanded they terminate their services and pay for damages. Jisui is often employed for a harmless enough purpose, which is to reduce space taken up by print books in shelves. The process has become increasingly popular with the ubiquity of tablets and smartphones, and so companies have started providing jisui services as a result, charging them several hundred yen per book, but usually without the permission of the author.
The defendants had referred to a provision in the Copyright Law that approves the reproduction of copyrighted works for personal use. They argued that they were “merely serving as the hands and feet of their customers” to reproduce books for private use, but the judge dismissed the claim. “We will appeal,” said a Doraibareggi Japan representative. “The ruling is unfair to readers.” A lawyer for the plaintiffs approved of the judge’s decision, saying, “The ruling was meaningful in clearly indicating that making a business out of scanning books without permission is illegal.”
The New Fall Lineup.
I’m addicted to TV. I know, as a writer we’re supposed to askew TV in favor of a keyboard or pen and paper. But I love and need the escapism television provides, also it rejuvenates my muse.
With this in mind, there are some new fall shows I’m salivating over.
Sleepy Hollow (Fox)
Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison) partners with Sleepy Hollow’s sheriff (Nicole Beharie) to solve the mysteries of a town ravaged by the battle between good and evil. The writers and producers of Fringe are at the helm of this series so I’m all in! I’m intrigued by the time travel twist and the headless horseman riding around a modern town. Though if I’m not hooked by the third episode the show will be ditched.
This show premiered on Monday September 16th and I was pleasantly surprised. Sleepy Hollow opens with Ichabod beheading a man in battle during the Revolutionary War. He dies and in the next scene we see poor Icahbod—who happens to be a stud—crawling out of an underground grave. There is the usual culture class of revolutionary man meets the modern world, but what really sets this series apart is the death of the town Sheriff in the first fifteen minutes which dumps the entire mystery in the lap of Sheriff Abby Mills. Her suitcases were packed to leave for Quantico and the FBI, but once she gets a gander at the Headless Horse, her plans change. It is refreshing to see an African American woman leading a paranormal series. Abby and Icahbod make and interesting couple and I can’t help wonder if a future romance will grow.
There are twists and turns already brewing in the plot. The Headless Horseman is one of THE HORSEMAN as in the apocalypse horsemen. Abby and her sister are somehow linked to The Horseman, and there are witches. I plan on staying tuned. What about you?
A.G.E.N.T.S. of Shield.
I loved the Avengers and love anything Joss Whedon touches. I will definitely watch and DVR this show.
Almost Human (Fox)
This action-packed buddy cop show is set in a future in which LAPD officers like John Kennex (Karl Urban) are partnered with highly evolved human-like androids like Dorian (Michael Ealy). Fringe‘s J.H. Wyman, who will write, will reteam with Lost‘s J.J. Abrams andBryan Burk as executive producers. This made my list because I love Karl Urban. I first spied him in Lord of The Rings: The Two Towers, but he sealed the deal with my heart in REDS and both Star Trek movies. He’s a wonderful character actor.
Inspired by the classic Bram Stoker novel, this drama stars The Tudors’ Jonathan Rhys Meyers in the title role. Based on a script from co-executive producer Cole Haddon, this version finds Dracula in London posing as an American entrepreneur who wants to bring modern science to Victorian society. But his true plan — to seek revenge on the people who ruined his life centuries ago. I loved Meyers in The Tudors’ and a new take on Dracula is always welcomed.
The Originals (CW)
This Vampire Diaries spin-off focuses on the show’s Original Family. Klaus (Joseph Morgan) returns to New Orleans — a town he helped build centuries ago — to reunite with his diabolical former protégé Marcel (Charles Michael Davis). My daughter got me hooked on Vampire Diaries. Though the love triangle plot is tried, I love the bad boys and Klaus is a terrific villain. I’m looking forward to him taking charge in Nawhleans.
I have a few favorites that I can’t wait to return. Top 2 are The Walking Dead in October and Game of Thrones next year. Along with Person of Interest, Supernatural, and The Voice, my TV dance card will be full. As you can see, I lean heavily towards paranormal and fantasy shows.
So what will you be watching this fall?
Here’s a sexy snippet of my work in progress Evermore. It’s the third installment in my Descendant of Ra series.
A bit of clarification, Emeline isn’t attacking Avery. She’s jonesing for someone else.
From the instant Avery touched Emeline, the frayed dark core churning within him, slowed and turned into something more deadly—desire. Her skin was soft, delicate, and so damn warm. Or was it him on fire from simply touching what he’d craved for so long?
She pushed against him, not struggling to be free, but to continue her assault. He took the knife from her hand. Her head jerked up, and her hostile gazed nailed him. Then widened with surprise. Luscious lips parted and she sucked in a sharp breath. Did she remember their first encounter? He wondered, hoped. If she did, probably for all the wrong reasons. Avery shoved the thought away.
Her chest heaved. “Why’d you stop me?” she said, yet didn’t pull her hand away.
Avery tossed the knife in the bar sink. “Too many witnesses to get away with it.” From the corner of his eye, he noticed the man watching them. Avery gave the guy his full attention.
Lightweight, he thought. Soft hands clasped the beer bottle, matched the soft body beneath the cashmere coat. No obvious bulge of a weapon. But by his grin, he was cocky, use to giving orders. Avery had seen his kind many times, usually surrounded by sycophants. The guy rose from his seat. He gave Emeline a possessive glare and saluted her with his beer before sauntering away. The man toyed with his life. “Who is he?” Avery asked.
Emeline wrested her hand away. Her eyes threw daggers at the guy’s retreating back, then at Avery. “Who the hell are you?” She waited for his answer.
He didn’t give it to her. Nothing good would come from her knowing his name. She pushed, and Avery stepped out of her way, but watched as she stomped into the office. She returned a few seconds later in a pair of low slung jeans, shrugging on a short leather jacket and slinging her purse over her shoulder.
Emeline passed by him on the way to the exit, without a glance his way. E.J. whistled low and angled his neck to follow her strut. And she had a strut. A sensual sway her angry march couldn’t hide. And damn, she had an ass. Avery wasn’t an ass man, that didn’t get him going. He was a legs man. Loved them long and smooth and wrapped around his waist while he’s stroking deep, making that wet, sucking sound of two bodies slamming together. Looking at Emeline’s rear made his reevaluate everything he ever thought about being a legs man.
Here’s an excerpt from EVERLASTING, the second novel
in my Descendants of Ra series
Strands of Reign’s long hair swept across his face, partially hiding his expression. Alexis brushed the wayward locks away. She skimmed her palm down his sculpted cheek and through his short beard. His eyes widened and…he stopped breathing. Amazed that she had actually caused a man to stop breathing at her mere touch, Alexis leaned in for a taste, that’s all she promised. One kiss to settle the heat stirring in her blood. Centimeters away from his lips, she paused, then drew away.
There’s a reason you’re celibate, Alexis. Too many relationships had soured quick and left her swearing off men for the past year. But if there was ever a reason to end her diet, Reign was it.
He waited. Not a muscle betrayed his emotions, yet a vein pulsed wildly at the base of his neck.
But he lied. What if you approach this logically? You want him. Your panties are sticking to you, you want him so bad. So have him. Leave your heart out of it. Hell, men do it. You can do it too. Screw him, let him work all your kinks out. Just don’t fall in love with him so when the shit hits the fan—
I won’t be the one cut by the blades. She pressed her lips to his.
Holy hell! Nothing had ever tasted so delicious, felt as delightful as his firm lips slanted across her mouth. His whiskers gently brushed her skin, heightening her senses. His scent, woodsy with a hint of musk, filled her lungs. She leaned into him, parted her lips, and licked the seam of his closed mouth. He shuddered, and his lips parted. His tongue darted inside her mouth and ignited her blood. He wanted her. She didn’t just feel in it in his touch, but knew it as if she were peeking into his soul.
They yanked apart, she panting while Reign inhaled sharply and exhaled deliberately. His pecs heaved as his gaze devoured her. Nothing made sense, not the heat surfing through her body or the hunger gnawing at her soul. Kissing Reign erased the presence of every man who had ever touched her. Flustered, she glanced down and saw her finger still pressed between his.
He released her. She wiped away the smear of blood and found perfect new skin. “Okay, so how did you do that?” She held up the healed digit to his puzzled stare.
“I do not know.” His gaze shifted away.
He’s lying. Disappointment dissolved the lingering taste of him. Wow, that didn’t take long.
According for FORBES, these are the top earning authors of 2013
E.L. James: $95 million
Originally a “Twilight” tribute titled “Master of the Universe,” “Fifty Shades of Grey” vaulted its author from fan-fiction websites straight to the top of every best-seller list. The e-book format was a key factor, giving readers an easy way to purchase the sex-filled sequels — and a discrete way to read them in public.
James Patterson: $91 million
Only a phenomenon the size of “Fifty Shades of Grey” could knock Patterson from his longtime perch atop the top-earning authors list, and chances are he’ll be back at No. 1 next year. One out of every 17 hardcovers sold in the U.S. is his, and with his “Maximum Ride” and “Witch & Wizard” series he’s increasingly as much a force in the young adult market as adult thrillers, his mainstay.
Suzanne Collins: $55 million
The blockbuster release of the first “Hunger Games” film, starring Jennifer Lawrence, helped launch Collins from the ranks of up-and-comers to the Olympian heights of J.K. Rowling and Stephenie Meyer. A former children’s television writer, she’s also the author of the five-book series “The Underland Chronicles.”
Bill O’Reilly: $28 million
He’ll always be known primarily as a television talking head, but with the publication of “Killing Lincoln,” book writing became more than just a sideline for the Fox News host. After the publication of follow-up “Killing Kennedy,” he held the No. 1 and No. 2 slots on the New York Times hardcover non-fiction best-sellers list, and his next volume, “Killing Jesus,” could be the biggest of the series
Danielle Steel: $26 million
In 40 years as a published author, Steel has published 128 titles, averaging more than three a year. Most have been romances, but she’s also written children’s books, nonfiction and even a volume of poetry. She’s sold more than 600 million copies.
Jeff Kinney: $24 million
Written for children and younger adolescents, Kinney’s “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series has spawned seven installments (with No. 8 due in November 2013) and three theatrical films. “The Third Wheel” sold more than 1.4 million copies last year.
Janet Evanovich: $24 million
“I motivate myself to write by spending my money before I make it,” Evanovich has written. “My favorite exercise is shopping.” Thanks to the success of her Stephanie Plum detective novels, she must be getting an awful lot of exercise these days
Nora Roberts: $23 million
She made her name writing the kind of bodice-rippers you see at the supermarket checkout or the airport bookstore, but lately Roberts has become the queen of the e-book: She sold more than 3.2 million digital copies in 2012, more than any other author not named E.L. James.
Dan Brown: $22 million
“Inferno,” Brown’s third novel about the adventures of occult mystery-solver Robert Langdon, was the best-selling book of 2013’s first half, moving 369,000 copies. Still, it didn’t come close to the sales of its predecessors, “The Da Vinci Code” and “The Lost Symbol.
Stephen King: $20 million
Less prolific than some of the other authors on this list, King has his up and down years, but he’s enjoying yet another moment of cultural ubiquity, with CBS’s “Under the Dome” one of the biggest new hits on network television and a long-awaited follow-up to “The Shining” coming to bookstores. King also has two sons who are successful novelists.
Dean Koontz: $20 million
Koontz remains the master of the creep-out. He’s sold more than 450 million copies to date
John Grisham: $18 million
“The Racketeer,” Grisham’s 18th novel and one of his many popular legal thrillers, was the second-best-selling hardcover novel of 2012. His next, “Sycamore Row,” is set to be published in October 2013.
David Baldacci: $15 million
Like his fellow Southerner John Grisham, Baldacci was a lawyer before he turned his hand to writing novels full time. He’s now published 26 of them, all of them best sellers.
Rick Riordan: $14 million
Riordan sold more than 5.6 million copies of his mythology-inspired young adult adventures in 2012. Two of the three best-selling children’s titles were his.
J.K. Rowling: $13 million
After navigating the tricky transition from children’s books to adult fiction, Rowling has rediscovered her mojo, with “The Cuckoo’s Calling” (published secretly under the pen name Robert Galbraith) topping the hardcover best-sellers list while “The Casual Vacancy” is No. 1 among paperbacks.
George R.R. Martin: $12 million
The HBO adaptation of “Game of Thrones” made Martin the best-selling paperback writer of 2012 (after E.L. James, of course). If he wants to climb on this list, he might have to pick up his pace a bit: It took him six years to complete his last installment in the fantasy series.
Click to see the full article: http://www.forbes.com/pictures/eeji45eiffk/e-l-james-95-million/
This is a snippet of my WIP, Evermore, the third novel in my Descendants of Ra series.
Meet Avery and Emeline!
A shift in the air alerted him that he was no longer alone. The hesitant whisper of feet gliding across the carpet revealed his intruder. Could he not have a moment alone? Maybe if he didn’t move she would go away and leave him to finish his repairing his wall. But her scent—a desert rose mix that promised a dangerous ride—tortured him.
Silence ensued, stretched painfully he had to opened one eye and peered at her. Pity welled in her startled eyes as she stared at his scars. He wanted neither.
Her gaze shot to his. Questions danced in her eyes. Questions he refused to answer. It would serve no purpose to spill his guts to a woman who saw him as less than. Her hand reached for him. Avery almost leaned into it, he craved her touch that much. But not while pity surfed in her hazel eyes. He’d have none of it.
“Don’t,” he snarled and grabbed her hand.
“It’s…”Her voice wavered.
He held his breath, waiting for her to finish her sentence with any of the words on his personal list: ugly, grotesque, monstrous.
Huh? He hadn’t heard right.
“Your tattoo, it’s intricate and beautiful.” Her gaze caressed the swoops and swirls.
Suddenly, he wanted her to touch him, all of him, but that was not going to happen. “I did it to hide the scars. Didn’t work.” He’d never admitted that to anyone, even E.J.
Again, her hazel eyes filled with pity and her hand kept coming, as if he hadn’t ordered her not too. He was about to push her away when she veered to his face. His breath caught, stilled by the possibilities of the moment.
She traced his face with lazy fingers. Her almond-shaped eyes, fringed with long sooty lashes, were focused, intent on the torture she was inflicting on his flesh. A gleamed of interest sparked in their depths and a sultry smile tugged at the corners. Was he dreaming?
It had been more than twenty-four hours since he last closed his eyes for more than a few minutes. Dreams eluded him. Either he slept like the dead or nightmares chased him from a restful sleep. This was neither. This was a fantasy come true.
She touched at his arm and swept her thumb over the slight scar. “Your wound? It’s gone. Want to explain?”
He wanted to kiss her, part her soft pouty lips and taste her. Instead, he shrugged his shoulders. “Genetic anomaly. I heal fast.” He waited for more questions, but she cupped his face, rubbed her palm over his day old stubble. Desire stabbed his core, turning the darkness within him into a sea of need.
Take her. Take what you want. Spread her. Fuck her. Take. Take. The darkness whispered, taunted, and finally screamed. Avery balled his fists and kept them at his sides, anything to keep from humiliating himself. If only he could lock away his unending need for her, treat her as client and not the only woman who’d ever made his blood simmer.
If he could do that, then he could walk away, but a little bit of Emeline wouldn’t be enough. And if he couldn’t have it all, he’d rather have none. He had to leave.