Reading List, Connected by Ink.

I feel like I was so busy working on my LOR stories that everything crept up on me at once. I very nearly missed that the story Nicole Dennis wrote for my LOR prompt had been posted! Family and Reflection, the latest book in Anne Barwell and Elizabeth Noble’s the Sleepless City series has been released, and Tali Spencer has tied up Rattletrap and shared some of Thick as Ice on her blog. And as if that wasn’t enough to keep me busy, Sera Trevor has shared the first chapter of A Shadow on the Sun with her e-mail subscribers, and there are 84 LOR stories already freely available via the M/M Group. It’s a good thing that this is our last week of school before the summer break because I have a lot of reading to do.

You’d think that after submitting my second LOR story, I would be allowed a break, right? Not so! I found myself picking up Thorns and Fangs almost immediately. I’ve been going through and revising it again. While I am impatient to share the story with everyone, I want it to be as strong as I can possibly make it, and I feel like I’m making good steps in that direction! Taking some time off from this story has given me some necessary distance and I’ve learnt a lot from Arielle, Serena, Sam and Raevyn, my LOR event betas and editor this year that I can now put to good use.

Weirdly, while writing my LOR stories I found it was really difficult to read other people’s LOR stories. I am rather one-track. When I’m in writing-mode, all I want to do is write. When I’m in reading-mode, I go through 3-4 books back to back before I’m satisfied. I think that the knowledge that I still had a lot of work to do with my LOR stories didn’t help me relax and enjoy them. Bizarrely, I have no problems reading Family and Reflection while working on my own Vampire serial. I’ve got no idea why the similarities between these novels and my draft don’t put me off, but instead reading the first six chapters of Family and Reflection last night got me really inspired and all fired up to get back to work revising my draft. Coming back to these characters after a few months felt like catching up with old friends. I am really enjoying this series!

Also inspirational, Nicole Dennis’ Connected By Ink has me itching to try writing paranormal sci-fi. I love the direction she took my prompt. The setting and world-building was completely unexpected and my favorite part of her story!

Here is my prompt (sans incredibly awesome picture unfortunately):

Dear Author,

What you see is more than mere ink. Any tattoo has the power that comes from significance, but none have what ours do― the ability to grant power. He gave us the first of our marks when he claimed us as his Heartless, you see. Betrayed by love and left to die by the ones we most trusted― but still unwilling to die.

It’s a strange life, if ‘life’ is the right term. We walk in the dark, see what humans do not see, and wield awesome powers, protecting humans from what they do not even know exists. It’s not without its perks, of course. We are allowed pleasure, companionship and wealth. There is only one rule, and that easily kept. We know the anguish of heartache too well. Why fall in love?

No, my problem is more― peculiar. One of my tattoos has gone― missing. It seems to have transferred itself to the charming young man who entertained me last night. An absolutely unheard of event. I would find it fascinating― if it wasn’t happening to me. Now I have to find him before he attracts unwanted attention with his new powers and find a way to get my tattoo back.

And Nicole’s story can be found on Goodreads here (must be a member of M/M Romance to view).

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