Between five and six a.m. every day, light filters through the slats of my wooden blinds and golden fingers crawl the length of my pillow to pull me into day. If I'm lucky, it's a soft tug up a few rungs of a ladder, and I hover a while between sleep and wakefulness.
It's here, in this golden place, I was transported to 1800s New York, where in a small city a boy in a blue longcoat pulled a girl into an alley and urgently told her, "You don't belong here." I launched out of bed for my phone and furiously typed what I knew. The boy was her guardian, from another time or place, and knew the factory where she was heading was about to burn.
That was it. I set the notes aside for a year and worked on another project. Until last spring when I was invited to join a group of fantasy writers looking to start new projects and swap pages. I'd just finished my first novel called WICKED GLIMPSES and thought I'd be onto book two in that series. But when I sat down to a blank page, that girl in New York looked at me with intent dark eyes and demanded, Tell the story. I need to know how he knew the fire would happen.
So did I.
Eight months later, Ophelia Dannan and her three keepers, Rune, Hart, and Falcon, had taken EVERY DARK SHADOW to places I never imagined. Gritty, gang-infested streets. Tranquil farmsteads. Ethereal forests. Terrifying chambers. Now here I sit, my debut epic fantasy romance available for preorder in eBook and, soon, about to be ready in hardcover. There's character artwork and a map and a book cover, and the story has a life beyond my wildest...dreams.
Every single story I've penned, and ideas I've tucked away for later, have come out of remaining suspended a while in that golden hour. That sweet spot for uninhibited imagining, after we've recharged our minds and before the day has sunk its claws in us. It's one of my very favorite hours. And because of it, EVERY DARK SHADOW will soon be in the world. I hope you love the epic adventure Ophelia and her keepers take. It's the first in a planned duology...but I have to admit, the world has its hooks in me and characters are talking. So it's unlikely there will only be two books in this universe. In fact, I have an in-universe novella I'll be sharing with you later this year.
If you order EDS, do send me a screenshot with proof of purchase to enter the giveaway for a signed first-edition hardcover with all four character portraits and bookmark. I'll be revealing this soon and, let me tell you. I hope you'll swoon.
Ophelia, her grumpy/sunshine keepers and I thank you.