Firstly, thanks to April for hosting me on her blog today and giving me a chance to talk about The Vampire’s Concubine serial. This blog tour is to celebrate the release of the second book in this serial, Rage, and there is a chance to win this, and the first book in the serial, An Amusement, at the link below. But, before we get to that, I hope I’m going to be able to give you some insights into the books in the serial, where I’m planning on taking my readers and why I started out on this short-story journey.
I’ve been writing since I was very young. My primary school (4-11yr olds) teachers, when giving out creative writing assignments, used to have to brace themselves for not the hundred to two hundred words that they were used to from most pupils, but pages and pages of (rambling) fiction – I must have been a royal pain to grade. I wrote my first ‘novel’ at 11, and please note, I have placed the word in quotes due to my wish that that little piece of ‘art’ never ever see the light of day again. 🙂 As well as original fiction, I also used to dabble in the odd piece of fanfiction before I actually knew what fanfiction was. It wasn’t until I discovered the internet in the early 90’s that I realised other people did the same thing and then there was no stopping me – so I cut my writing teeth first in the Highlander fandom, and then Harry Potter, shifting my way from gen to het and finally to slash/femslash fanfiction.
I have also kept going with my own original fiction, but until three years ago, I had not made the move to publishing it. I’d thought about it, ever since that first ‘novel’, but until the possibilities of eBooks came along, it had been an elusive dream. Now, thanks to the opportunities offered by the likes of Amazon and Smashwords, I run my own publishing company, Wittegen Press, with my twin sister, Tasha.
I write and publish a number of different genres: fantasy, science fiction, paranormal, horror, young adult, and, of course, erotic romance. The Vampire’s Concubine is a combination of two of those genres, a paranormal erotic romance. This short story serial is set, unsurprisingly by the title, in a paranormal world where demons and vampires are real and my two leads are, by the end of the first story, both vampires. Hieron, Vampire Lord of Harkham, is ruthless, powerful and master of all he surveys. A stranger arrives and offers him 99 years of absolute service in exchange for becoming a vampire. Bargain agreed, that stranger, unnamed and without a past, becomes Umi, Hieron’s slave and one of his concubines. Thus, must master and slave become bound in a relationship based on obedience and secrets.
I’ve always loved stories with magic, or supernatural aspects, since I grew up reading fairy tales and ghost stories and so it was just a natural progression for me to weave that into my erotic romances. I tend to call them erotic romances, because, for me, the relationship should always come first, however hot the sex is intended to be :). Anyone who’s read An Amusement, or Rage, may wonder how I can make that statement, because these two books are set very close together at the beginning of the relationship between Hieron and Umi, and that relationship is antagonistic, to say the least. At the moment, all is very black and white; Hieron is the master, Umi is his slave. I can promise, though, as the overall story develops, not all will remain so clearcut.
I have had the idea for the arc behind The Vampire’s Concubine for sometime, but each time I thought about it, it didn’t feel like a single story, and nor could I mentally break it down into two, or three books. Mainly, this I think, is because the arc traverses a century and the continuity breaks in the overall story meant I couldn’t convince myself of the unbroken unity of the individual pieces. So, as I developed it, I began to consider that maybe it wasn’t a few longer books, but a collection of shorter stories, beginning with a cluster at the beginning of the arc. The time between the interludes then widens until reaching the end of the arc where they will cluster again in a nail-biting conclusion.
Some people might ask, ‘Why erotica, why not just make it a paranormal fantasy adventure?’ And there are many answers to that, but I’ll be brief. 🙂 I like writing erotica, I like exploring stories where the relationship is central to the plot, and, being frank, I also enjoy writing the sex. I have a penchant for adding a power differential to the erotic stories I write too, but that’s another post for later on this blog tour. ;P
So, I have much planned for Hieron and Umi: Umi must learn to live in Hieron’s world of court and politics, while Hieron has to deal with the fact that he doesn’t know, and may never know everything about his mysteriously fascinating slave. And then there is the question of what will happen at the end of those 99 years – who was Umi before he appeared in Hieron’s rooms and why has he made this bargain of servitude? All will be answered at the conclusion to The Vampire’s Concubine serial.
Rage picks up the story immediately after An Amusement, where Umi has become a vampire and Hieron’s slave. The story is seen through the eyes of Yan, Hieron’s favourite concubine and therefore Umi’s rival. Still, Yan finds that survival is more important than rivalry when Umi, apparently by merely existing, draws down Hieron’s wrath on the lord’s entire household. A solution must be found before someone dies.
Thus the saga continues as Hieron discovers more about Umi and Umi learns what it means to be at the mercy of his unpredictable master. The third story, Dark of Mind, is in development and I hope readers will find it and all the short stories in The Vampire’s Concubine engaging, exciting and sexy.
Rage & An Amusement Giveaway!
For a chance to win copies of Rage and An Amusement, check out the competition here.
Sophie Duncan is a UK author of genre fiction with Wittegen Press. She has been writing since she was a child and has been sharing her work with others since she discovered the internet in the 1990’s. She has published original works in many genres, from contemporary fantasy, through crime and mystery drama, to erotic romance. All of her published books can be found listed at her author page on the Wittegen Press website.
Other places Sophie would love to connect with you are:
Google+ – https://plus.google.com/+SophieDuncan
Her blog, Sophie’s Thoughts & Fumbles – http://sophiesthoughtsandfunmbles.blogspot.co.uk/
Erotic Fiction blog, Fantasy Boys XXX http://fantasyboysxxx.blogspot.co.uk/
Twitter @thwax and @wittegenpress
Wittegen Press on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/WittegenPress
Thwax on Tumblr – thwax.tumblr.com
When, Hieron, vampire lord of Harkham, is approached by a mysterious young stranger, he finds himself tempted by the bargain his bold visitor makes: ninety nine years of absolute service in return for vampire power. With no name and no explanation of the reasons behind the offer, the attractive enigma becomes Umi, Hieron’s slave, concubine and vampire childe.
Yet, from the very first moments the bargain is sealed, Hieron discovers his concubine to be an erotic and obsessively maddening challenge.
The Vampire’s Concubine is an erotic romance told in short-story episodes.
Rage – The Vampire’s Concubine #2 ($0.99/£0.77/EUR0.86)
The bargain has been sealed, Umi is now a vampire and belongs to Hieron as his concubine. Yet, Hieron cannot reconcile himself to the secrecy behind his new slave, it makes him dangerously angry and the vampire lord lives up to his warning to Umi that he will be cruel.
Hieron’s demands weigh heavily on Umi, who, it seems, cannot please his master. As Hieron’s rage grows, Umi’s time is running out. Desperately, he searches to find the key to salving Hieron’s fury before the beast within his sire rises to destroy him.
Purchase ‘Rage’ and get ‘An Amusement – The Vampire’s Concubine #1’ FREE – see inside the book for details.
Available at Amazon and Smashwords – for buying links, please see this entry on the Wittegen Press website: wittegenpress.com/rage.
An Amusement – The Vampire’s Concubine #1 ($0.99/£0.77/EUR0.86)
Hieron, vampire lord of Harkham, is unaccustomed to visitors in his private bedchamber unless he has expressly invited them. Such an unsolicited intrusion should mean the interloper’s death, but Hieron finds himself unusually fascinated by the stranger who appears before him unbidden. Offering no name and no explanation of his reasons, the young man offers ninety nine years of absolute service in exchange for the gift of vampire power.
Amused and aroused, Hieron agrees to the bargain, names his enigma, Umi and decides he will become his newest concubine. The only thing left is to seal the deal in a bond of sex and supernatural power.
Available at Amazon, Smashwords and iTunes – for buying options, please see this entry on the Wittegen Press website: wittegenpress.com/anamusement
COMING SOON – Dark of Mind – The Vampire’s Concubine #3
Umi is no normal concubine. His master’s gift of vampirism notwithstanding, there is much more to him than the Lord of Harkham has yet discovered. Hieron is no longer angry with Umi’s secrets, but he remains intrigued and, demon-owned twice over Umi maybe, but it is his mind that interests Hieron the most.
Under Yan’s tutelage, Umi is discovering the rites and skills to being a concubine, and Hieron is master when it comes to the night in his newest concubine’s veins, mostly. That bond holds a limit that Hieron has never experienced before: his childe has resisted the most intimate of contacts, that of the mind to mind control that normally lies within a sire’s remit.
There is power in his childe, power not of the vampire’s giving and, before Heiron is ready to deliver Umi to the harem, he means to discover it.