Tag Archives: chloe

Last Stop on the Blog Tour

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A month ago today Echoes of Balance was released via REUTS Publishing. It’s crazy – it still seems so surreal that something I wrote is now being read by other people. I want to take a second to thank everyone at REUTS and everyone who posted a blog for the tour and just everyone generally, for being so supportive and amazing and for reading my work. This post is a day late because it’s really hard to be a writer who also works, especially in a high stress, busy job. But I still come home at the end of the day and power up Twitter and see some nice words and supportive folk and I so dig it. So that being said, y’all have earned yourselves some bonus content – lots of bonus content.

So with that being said, here is what Gregory Ducante was up to in the months preceding the events in Echoes:

Echoes of Ducante

From afar, Ducante knew the sleepy town of Molton didn’t look like much of an investment opportunity. It was, of course, why it suited his needs so perfectly. The real estate was relatively inexpensive, and the sleepy residents were all too eager to try something new. And then there was the more underground clientele that he banked on attracting.

                         A month after his new opening, he was pleased to see that his revenue stream was already solidly in the black: both monetarily and educationally. None of it was particularly newsworthy; roughly what he had expected from a small city and the range of powerful beings it could hold. That was what he had thought a month in.

                         One day later, however, and his opinions had changed.

                         He had all but forgotten the smell that invaded the town. It was rare in his big-city outposts, unheard of in other small town staples, all but banned from his Selvmar location. But here it was.

                         In Molton.

                         He expected it to pass quickly, and in that initial week, it did. It lingered, never close enough to his bar to feel threatening, and then vanished for another month.

                         And then it returned. This time, for longer. It left again – and then it returned, even longer, this time, and this faithful day, it stayed.

                         It still never came near his bar. It must have been young and undertrained, or perhaps it never expected to find someone like Ducante in such a mild mannered place. He imagined that it might be some of the draw of Molton for one of those. Overall, though, he tried not to focus on it. It stayed away, and focus only brought the sharp realization that the smell was not just recognizable:

                         It was familiar.

                         When the presence and stench that came with it began to linger in Molton on a more permanent basis, Ducante turned to his clientele. He was frustrated to find that they were particularly useless: they either had no idea, or they brought back vague stories of some sort of hunter. A witch, maybe, and a pretty one at that.

                         “Helpful,” Ducante growled sardonically, twitching a stack of papers behind the bar.

                         His staff, being especially standard and dramatically mediocre, were also of no help. It became something of a pet peeve, this distant presence that never came close enough for him to gather anything more but the tangy stench of raw power.

                         It became clear, eventually, that if he wanted to know more, he would have to do so himself. It was particularly unbecoming: he hadn’t needed this level of sneakery in years, and he much preferred his space behind the bar than one in the thick of things.

                         Ducante decided that he would investigate on a Thursday. The presence was always on the far side of town, the side near the old, overgrown forest, and he saw no reason why she wouldn’t be there – picking off rogues, no doubt – on that day, the same as any other.

                         But then, as he twitched more papers into neat stacks, he felt it. He smelled it. Closer, this time, in the city proper. He glanced around the bar, at his nervous bartender and his morose looking bouncer. It would make no difference, business wise, if he were to slip out.

                         And so he did, quickly out the back door.

                         The smell got stronger as he twisted around blocks and blocks. It seemed to be coming from the other side of a building through a narrow alley, which he ducked down quickly, clinging to the shadows like bed sheets on a cold night.  He swathed himself in them careful as he crept closer, closer, the slight figure coming into view  at the other mouth between the two buildings.

                         She had just finished her work, the work all his clientele had warned him about, and was carefully looking over the body of a felled vampire before her.

                         For a moment, Ducante felt a certain iciness settle over him. From afar, she looked the same. The same as the last time, all those years ago, but then… but then she turned, and no. She was different, she was new. She wiped her knife at her jeans mildly and he took it in: she was pretty, yes, but the eyes were different, and the hair. The nose, just slightly so.

                         “Interesting,” he murumured, sinking back into the shadows. “Very interesting.” The corner of his lips twisted up into a smile. “I look forward to meeting you, Naimei.”

And what else do we have…? Oh, a giveaway, you say? That sounds about right. And you’re sick of just getting a BOOK for your troubles? Alright, alright. I got you. This giveaway, ending February 1st, will net you a paperback copy of Echoes of Balance (can we give Ashley from REUTS some big ups for that cover?) and a hand drawn Mucha-esque portrait of Chloe. Drawn by moi. ‘Cause art school.

Enter the giveaway here.

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Echoes of Josef

Apologies for how rough this is – it started as a character builder, and I haven’t put much time into going back and editing it, but here is Josef’s prelude to Echoes of Balance. More coming soon from perspectives of other characters. Stay tuned, and enjoy.

EoB is out via REUTS Publishing on December 17th. You can preorder your copy now on reuts.com!

Continue reading

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EoB First Chapter available on REUTS!

If you’ve stayed tuned to past posts, you know that my first novel (Echoes of Balance) was picked up by REUTS Publishing, a brand new indie publishing house. Oh, and I’m their first title. SWEET.

It’s been exciting and busy and crazy and amazing. Edits finished, life stayed exciting and busy and crazy, and because my day job requires a lot of time and energy – and because I care about it a lot – this blog got a little pushed aside. But if you’re out there, you should totally go check out the first chapter of EoB on the REUTS website:

http://www.reuts.com/books/echoes-of-balance/echoes-of-balance-first-chapter/

And stay tuned for another Ducante Originals short story between now and the presale of EoB, happening on Black Friday. I’ve returned to my roots – the low country of the South – and intend to do nothing but eat, sleep, and write for the next several days. Life is awesome.

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#EoB Trivia (Round 1)

With today’s Echoes of Balance cover release on Writer’s Ally and my fantastic editor Kisa tweeting some of her favorite lines from the book, I thought it might be appropriate to post some random trivia about the book and it’s characters. Consider this the first in many rounds – more to come when I’m feeling too low-energy to actually write a short story about Ducante and some of my other favorite characters that don’t get a lot of air time in The Ways trilogy. So, here we go:

1. Chloe, in her first iteration, was created when I was about eleven. I think she started as a Harry Potter-esque wizard and then I decided she wasn’t that at all, and slowly she evolved into being what she was and having a family and all that jazz and rhyme.

2. Chloe’s birthday would be in September (exact day unknown, she doesn’t keep track). Because I just feel like that’s a good season for her. Also, several of the people closest to me have birthdays that month, and I feel like she embodies some of their best – and worst – qualities.

3. Naimei is pronounced nigh (rhymes with ‘high’) may (rhymes with ‘hay’). It came about when I realized I finally had to name what Chloe was if she was going to be a main character. I think I was staring at a garbage can when it happened.

4. Naimei have existed in or around every major civilization and culture which is why the names of Chloe, her family members, and others of her kind seem so diverse – they’re an extremely multicultural people. THE WORLD IS THEIR OYSTER CULTURE.

5. That debonair vampire in the story’s cover release/back cover blurb? His name is Josef.

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IT’S HAPPENING

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IT’S HAPPENING.

October 8th – which for the record, is like not even that many days from now – is the big release for the cover of ECHOES OF BALANCE. The book itself will be released on December 17th in Ebook and Print. If you’re interested in being a BETA reader, feel free to get in touch with REUTS at hello@reuts.com

For Chloe Moraine, fighting wild bears– and the occasional vampire– is a better pastime than the tediousness of keeping the universe in balance. But balancing is the family business. It comes with being one of the last in the ancient line of Naimei.

So when the impending return of the Original Demons threatens global harmony, Chloe is obligated to help. Even when that means the dull-as-dirt task of following a human girl who “might be involved, maybe,” instead of the thrilling hunt she craves.

With their powerful magic and ancient Ways, Chloe’s family is unconcerned, certain they’ll quickly fix the imbalance while she’s preoccupied with human high school. But when the Ways start to fail, the threat becomes more serious, and the only person that seems to know anything is a debonair vampire with an offer to help.

If Chloe chooses to trust him, and the darker side of the supernatural he represents, she’ll betray her family and risk losing them, and herself, in the process. But if he’s right, he may just be their only chance to stop the return of the Originals and save the world.

Maybe high school won’t be so boring after all.

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