Author #Interview – Death by Starlight by Alexis Duran #Giveaway #Excerpt

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Title: Death By Starlight
Author: Alexis Duran
Series: Edge of Night #2
Release Date: July 19th 2017
Genre: Paranormal MM Romance/Fantasy

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In Betwixt and Between, Ian and Zeke fought a battle against the queen of the dark realm in order to be together. Now, just when they think they might settle into as normal a life as elves living among humans might be able to expect, a new enemy threatens to tear them apart. While Zeke helps the shaman Alistair in his hunt for an elusive mermaid, Ian is called to confront a wicked nymph preying on tourists along Seattle’s waterfront. Zeke and Ian soon discover that the defeated Queen Ysolde has spread her evil into the sea realms, and danger lurks beneath every wave. But it’s too late to stop an escalating series of confrontations that lead to disappearances, death and the possible end of light in this world.

As Ysolde plots revenge and a mysterious prince seeks to win Ian for himself, the ancient war between light and dark sweeps Ian and Zeke into its maelstrom of hate, testing their trust for each other to the utmost.

Find Death by Starlight on Goodreads

Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Loose ID

EXCERPT

“Someone has to restore the balance between light and dark energy. I’m one of the last of my kind. I might be the only one who can do it.” Ian slid his hands off the table and rested them on his thighs. He expected derisive laughter from Zeke or a gentle clucking accompanied by a sad shake of the head. Sure, Ian Evers, nobody reporter for a gossip rag, half-breed elf, was going to save the world and fix what Ysolde spent centuries destroying.

Zeke’s face remained impassive, but a storm brewed in his eyes. “You’re not the last of the liosa. Others escaped.”

“I might as well be. They’re all gone, run off to hide out beyond…” Ian waved a hand in the air, signifying that remote world he sometimes glimpsed when they made love.

Glaring out the windows into their backyard, Zeke breathed deeply but said nothing. Ian continued.

“If I start with some miniscule adjustments, push back against the places the dark realm has encroached on this world, maybe some liosa will come out of hiding.”

“They won’t like you being with a svarta,” Zeke said.

“That’s their problem. I know I might never be buddies with other liosa, but we could use their help, right? If Ysolde is plotting to retake her throne like you say, and the svarta are behind her—”

“Only some of them. We don’t need anyone’s help.”

“Yes, we do. We never would’ve defeated Ysolde without Alistair’s and Cleona’s help.”

Zeke leaned forward, his gaze now focused intently on Ian. “We’re stronger now. We need to concentrate on solidifying our connection and making sure no one can break it.”

“You think someone could?” Ian asked. Surprised by the fear he saw lurking behind his lover’s composure, he instinctively put his hands on the table and reached for Zeke’s. Zeke allowed his hands to be held without reacting.

“You couldn’t track me in the dark realm,” Zeke said. “I’m afraid the same would be true if you ever go off into the realm of light. I’ll lose you.”

BOOK ONE

Title: Betwixt and Between
Release Date: June 29th 2015
Genre: Paranormal MM Romance, Fantasy

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Reporter Ian Evers, obsessed with magical creatures since childhood, never experiences satisfying proof that the magical realm actually exists until he falls into an entrapment spell set by a handsome but dangerous elf. Barely escaping with his soul intact, Ian is able to undo the hex, but he can’t escape the very real infatuation he’s developed for the fierce, alluring elf.

Ezekiel Stormshadow is a svarta, a dark elf who serves the queen of the dark realm. The realm of darkness needs the power of light to survive, and while hunting the last few magical beings on earth, Ezekiel discovers Ian, a light elf who’s unaware of his true nature and ripe for the plucking. Their brief encounter awakens a great hunger in Ezekiel, and he’s determined to feast on the light elf’s power and body before the queen intervenes and claims Ian for herself.

Ian knows only he can save Ezekiel from the grasp of the dark queen. Driven apart by the ancient imbalance between the dark and light realms, an evil queen starved for power, and their fear of each other, Ian and Ezekiel are relentlessly drawn together even though their union might destroy them both.

Find Betwixt and Between on Goodreads

Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Loose ID


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✨ An Interview with Alexis Duran

  1. Tell us a little about yourself and your writing goals.

I’ve been writing gay romance all my writing life but only started publishing in the genre about four years ago. Allowing this part of myself to shine has really kicked me into high gear. In those four years I’ve released three books in the Masters and Mages series, several standalones, and now Death by Starlight, which is Book 2 in the Edge of Night series.  My writing goal is to be able to do it full time and maybe branch out into self-publishing, but it is nice having Loose Id take care of all the technical details and my editor there is awesome.

  1. Congratulations on your new release. Please tell us a little bit about it. What’s your favorite aspect or part of the story? Do you have a favorite character? Who/Why?

Thanks! Ever since I first read Charles DeLint’s Bedford Falls books, I’ve been in love with urban fantasy.  I can’t begin to tell you how much fun it is to take a city I know well, like Seattle, and fill it with magical beings and crazy happenings. I adore all the characters in Death by Starlight, but I have a special little place in my heart for Alistair, the curmudgeonly shaman who’s besotted with a mermaid.  And Zeke, the dark elf, is my secret book boyfriend (Don’t tell the others, they get jealous).

  1. Are you a planner or a pantser? How much do you know about your story before you start writing? How often does your plan change? Why does this work best for you?

Total panster.  My stories start out with a character, a setting, and a problem. Usually the love interest is part of that problem. I’ll mull these elements over a bit, waiting for the voice of the MC to come to life and start telling me their story.  When it does, I’m off to the races.  I plot as I go along because I like to find out who my characters are and what they really want by writing about them, not by outlining.  I know that works great for a lot of writers but not for me.  Usually I don’t have to go back and change much. When I do, I really wish I could plan more, but my creative brain won’t cooperate.

  1. Do deadlines motivate you or block you? How do you deal with them?

Deadlines are actually an underrated motivational tool.  You can’t dither around and feed your writing block when you know you’ve got to deliver.  I’ve trained myself to just keep writing, even if I think what I’m doing sucks or if I have a feeling I’ve gone down the wrong track. I forge ahead because the best way to find the answer you’re looking for or the inspiration you need is by physically writing, putting words on the page or screen.  Mulling is fine, but you can get lost in it, so if you don’t have a publisher clamoring for your manuscript, I’d suggest setting your own deadlines and trying hard to stick to them.

  1. Do you schedule a certain amount of time for writing each day/week, or do you just work it in when you can? Would you like to change this, or does your current method work well for you?

It’s kind of a blend of both, because unfortunately my secret identity requires that I spend way too much time at the day jobs.  I write every morning for at least an hour. I wish it could be more because morning is my most creative time.  Then on the weekends I try to put in a block of writing, maybe three or four hours, at least one of the days.  If a deadline is looming, I’ll put in eight hours both days, but that’s kind of brutal. Not the writing, but the sitting at the computer. Sometimes I take my laptop and recline on the couch, but then my cat becomes my co-writer and that is not helpful. Evenings are usually when I do my marketing tasks.

  1. What was the most difficult part of writing this book? Why?

Hmmm.  I hate to admit it, because author angst and all that, but this book was pretty easy to write, because it was so much fun.  That said, I think the hardest part was making a convincing case for Prince Rellyk, who is determined to win over Ian in order to get his help fighting against the svarta. Ian is crazy mad in love with Zeke, who happens to be a svarta, so Rellyk really has to pull out all the stops to cajole, trick, manipulate, hex and woo Ian.  Rellyk and I had to put in a lot of late night, evil scheming sessions together.

  1. How do you develop a story idea? Do you always use the same method? Specifically, which do you develop first in your story building, the characters or the plot?

Character always comes first. Often they come with their own built-in problems. In Ian’s case, he’s not only part human and part elf, but he’s also part light elf (liosa) and part dark elf(svarta). These three elements are in direct conflict and so Ian is challenged to live with this internal and external war.  Usually the setting comes next; is this urban fantasy, SF, or does it take place in a mythic, pre-industrial society?  This is all part of the character building because a main question is, what does he do? Ian is a reporter. Sure he could do that in the future, but then the idea that he works for a tabloid came to mind and so a modern setting makes the best sense.  Then comes the really fun part; who is the love interest and why can’t they just jump into bed with each other? I never make it easy on my characters. Where’s the fun in that? And then the plot sort of spools out from their interactions, confrontations, etcetera because I never write just a romance, but always have a lot of other conflicting elements in play as well.  In Death by Starlight it’s the ongoing war between the liosa and svarta.

  1. What are your favorite genres when it comes to your own pleasure reading? Do you prefer to read ebooks or print?

Fantasy and science fiction are my favorites, and also cozy mysteries.  And historical. And, um, pretty much anything that has interesting gay characters and is well-written. I do read non-gay everything as well, but what can I say? I have a particular fondness for hot gay guys.  I prefer to read print books but I buy more ebooks, because it’s so dang easy and instant gratification is awesome. I love my Kindle. I really do.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Alexis Duran was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. At the University of Oregon, her fascination with people and relationships led her to major in Sociology, but her main love has always been creative writing. She has worked in museums, in fashion, in finance and film production. Her favorite job so far was Administrative Assistant in a haunted Victorian Mansion. She’s had several short stories published in the mystery, horror and literary genres, and one contemporary fantasy novel. Her fiction has won several awards including the Rupert Hughes Award from the Maui Writers Conference. She’s thrilled to enter the realm of erotic romance with the publication of her novels Touch of Salar, Blood of Salar and To Catch A Threeve. She’s is currently working on the next in the Masters and Mages series and several other m/m erotic novellas.

Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | Pinterest

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