Blog Tour: Lichgates by S.M. Boyce (spotlight, guest post, excerpt)

LichgatesLichgates
written by S.M. Boyce
published by Caffeinated Books Publishing

find it here: (affiliate links) CURRENTLY FREE! Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, Smashwords, Book Depository, Goodreads

The Grimoire Saga: The Grimoire Saga Website | Grimoire Saga Facebook

About the book: Kara Magari is about to discover a beautiful world full of terrifying things—Ourea.

Kara, a college student still reeling from her mother’s recent death, has no idea the hidden world of Ourea even exists until a freak storm traps her in a sunken library. With no way out, she opens an ancient book of magic called the Grimoire and unwittingly becomes its master, which means Kara now wields the cursed book’s untamed power. Discovered by Ourea’s royalty, she becomes an unwilling pawn in a generations-old conflict—a war intensified by her arrival. In this world of chilling creatures and betrayal, Kara shouldn’t trust anyone… but she’s being hunted and can’t survive on her own. She drops her guard when Braeden, a native soldier with a dark secret, vows to keep her safe. And though she doesn’t know it, her growing attraction to him may just be her undoing.

For twelve years, Braeden Drakonin has lived a lie. The Grimoire is his one chance at redemption, and it lands in his lap when Kara Magari comes into his life. Though he begins to care for this human girl, there is something he wants more. He wants the Grimoire.

Welcome to Ourea, where only the cunning survive.efcexcerpt

Treason, Book two of the Grimoire Trilogy by S. M. Boyce

Excerpt from chapter one

Kara pushed herself to her feet. “We should probably make our way back to the mansion, Braeden.”

“Nope,” he said.

“What do you mean, ‘no’?”

“You wanted to learn to fight. We haven’t trained today. We need to spar.”

She groaned. They’d been sparring. She’d healed dozens of bruises and even a broken finger, all evidence to the fact she was barely able to react in time to a sword coming at her face, much less a magical technique. She just wasn’t a very good fighter.

“But—”

He laughed. “You’ll never get better if you don’t practice. Come on.”

He drew his sword.

Her stomach twisted. “Right here? Seriously? On a ledge? Those are rapids!”

“Yes. Today, it’s all about controlling your opponent’s movement and fighting in difficult terrain. Since you aren’t strong in this environment, drive me back up the stairs and to the forest, where you have more room to move. Also, you should never be without a sword.”

“But I don’t have one!”

“That was my point.”

“Shouldn’t I practice one lesson at a time?”

In answer, he swung his sword at her arm. She pressed her back against the cave wall, ducking the blow seconds before the blade cut the air. Goose bumps crawled up her neck.

Braeden laughed. “The best way to learn is baptism by fire. Let’s go!”

Kara ducked another swing and looked around, but she had no tactical advantage. Braeden blocked her way to the stairs. She couldn’t run past him or—she glanced over the ledge at the tumbling river below. Nope, she was not jumping into that. Her only escape was a nearby hole in a ledge that ran above her like a catwalk. If she could—

Braeden shifted his weight onto the balls of his feet, apparently ready to lunge and end this whole bout before it began.

No time to think. Just go.

Kara sprinted away, toward the gap. Braeden followed, and Kara jumped for the ledge seconds before he lunged. She grabbed the walkway, the splinters of rock digging into her arms as her momentum lifted her legs out of Braeden’s passing reach.

His fingers brushed her ankle, sending a shiver up her leg. She resisted the impulse to smile at the tingling sensation his touch left behind. It made her think of his hand on her back, of their kiss—

“Clever!” he said.

Focus, Kara.

She pulled herself onto the ledge and wished she had a witty response, but she’d learned that lesson the hard way during an earlier match. She had distracted herself by talking, instead of distracting him like she’d hoped. Braeden had tripped her and knocked her clean onto her back. Dialogue was yet another weapon, one that required practice. Let the better fighters banter. Lesser fighters focus.

Kara got to her feet and raced along the upper pathway toward the waterfall, her satchel bouncing against her back while she ran as fast as she could. Braeden would be faster, but she had to try.

The ledge curved around a bend in the cave. Her feet pounded against the rock, sending shards of cave wall sprinkling to the ground below. The walkway likely hadn’t seen action like this in its lifetime. She hoped it wouldn’t crumble.

Braeden’s steps echoed from under her as the edge of the catwalk came into view. It would end about ten feet before the stairs, so she picked up her pace. She couldn’t slow down, or Braeden would catch her.

Five feet away, now.

Two feet—

Jump!

Kara kept her eyes where she wanted to go, just as Braeden had taught her the last time they’d sparred. She’d tried to jump from a tree and wound up in a bramble bush.

Instinct and a dozen failed attempts in prior matches told her to tuck her head, to curl onto her shoulder and let the momentum propel her forward.

Rocks dug into her neck and shoulder before pushing against her back, but nothing stung. She rolled back onto her feet and took off again, not daring to look back for Braeden. She would probably trip if she did.

She grinned, adrenaline numbing her fingertips as she ran. She had no earthly idea how she would do it again, but to hell with it. She’d finally rolled!

Kara followed the path as it curved and disappeared behind the waterfall. The water misted along her neck, blocking all light as she passed behind it. She let her feet find the stairs as she bolted up two at a time. Braeden’s light breaths came from somewhere in the darkness behind her.

Green sunlight illuminated the top of the stairs, the light blocked by a thick canopy of trees. Brown blurs came into view—bark. There would be a root right when she rounded the last stair, so she had to be careful not to—

Kara’s foot hooked on the root anyway.

She shot forward and skidded along the dirt path. Sticks left gouges in her arms. Her cheek stung. She wiped her hand over her face, but that just made the stinging worse. Blood stained her fingers when she pulled away.

A sword glinted in Kara’s peripheral vision. She sprung to her feet. Braeden stood a short way off, without a scratch on him. He grinned.

“Falling was an interesting choice,” he said.

“Cute.” Kara rolled her eyes and brushed dust off her clothes.

efcguestpost

Hey gorgeous! Thanks for having me today. I wanted to talk about two important factors in any writer’s life: writer’s block and story ideas.

I’ve hit road blocks plenty of times while writing. Over the years, I tried writing through writer’s block, writing stream-of-consciousness journals to get the gunk out, and watching TV instead of writing anything at all. None of these techniques really worked—for me.

The thing with writer’s block is that it’s different for each person. How you overcome it is all going to depend on your creative style. That’s exactly what you wanted to hear, right? Haha. Well, the good news is that I have some ideas for helping you figure out how to overcome writer’s block.

All you have to do to get some ideas of your own is to Google “overcome writer’s block.” Every writer I’ve ever met has encountered it at some point, and it’s a popular subject. The downside is that sorting through the endless pages can actually add stress, instead of easing your worry.

So let me tell you what works for me.

Before I even write a chapter, I plot it out. Sometimes, I go so far as to add dialogue, which gives me an idea of the characters and how they will interact in this particular chapter. That way, even if I don’t feel like writing or don’t know what to write, I at least have a place to start. Often, the inspiration comes back to me if I re-read the plot outline I made.

Other times, I have to get out of the house. I spend a lot of time in my office, and spending too much time in your creative place can actually stifle creativity. So I’ll walk the dog in the nearby woods, or go for a short drive. Getting some fresh air can get those creative juices flowing again.

A very popular method of getting over writer’s block is actually to start a writing journal. There are two kinds I’ve heard of.

The first writing journal is a daily journal. Every morning, as soon as you wake up, you write non-stop for ten minutes. Just go. Whatever you want. You can even write “um, um” until you come up with something. The point is that you’re writing and “cleaning out the cobwebs” so to speak. This one doesn’t work for me, but it has helped many writers I know.

The second writing journal is the one I keep. It’s a whenever-journal, one I keep close for when I get spurts of inspiration. Sometimes I just write a character sketch, or a line of dialogue. Other times, it’s an entire story idea. That’s how the Grimoire Saga came to be.

Whatever you do, keep a pen and paper with you at all times. You never know when inspiration is going to strike.

I heard once that you become a master at something after practicing the art for 3 hours over ten years. So never stop writing! It just takes time, practice, and a bit of patience.

What’s your favorite way of overcoming writer’s block? Share in the comments!

About the author: International Amazon Bestseller. Fantasy Author. Twitter addict. Book Blogger. Geek. Sarcastic. Gooey. Odd. Author of the action-packed Grimoire Saga.

S.M. Boyce is a novelist who loves ghosts, magic, and spooky things. She prefers loose-leaf tea, reads far too many books, and is always cold. She’s married to her soul mate and couldn’t be happier. Her B.A. in Creative Writing qualifies her to serve you french fries.

Boyce likes to update her blog a few times each week so that you have something to wake you up in the morning.

Find Ms. Boyce here: web, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads

 

efchappy

 

Comments

  1. Thanks for being a part of the tour! 🙂