The Writer’s Journey

A fan asked me a while back about the publication process. This comes up a lot, and she seemed genuinely surprised by all that publishing a novel entails. Today I’ll make this my topic of conversation.

Of course, first and foremost, you need to write and complete a story. It has to be original, or contain a new twist on an old idea. This alone is a daunting task, successful only to those who truly believe in their work, and have the fortitude to see it through. When I tell someone I’m a published author, about half the time I receive the same reaction–“Yeah, I have a book I’ve been meaning to write…” Trust me. Meaning to isn’t doing, and doing is a lot harder than it sounds. I tell them all the same thing. Sit down and write a little every day. An hour is sufficient, as long as you stick with it. That’s the key.

So now you have a completed manuscript. Congratulations. You’ve nursed it, coddled and fed it, and the final words of the final chapter bring you great satisfaction. “I did it,” you tell all your friends. “I finally finished that book.” Well, guess what. You’re not even halfway down the path to a published work. Next comes self-editing. This is where you dissect that carefully assembled product and weed out the bugs. You’ll second guess plot and dialog, add, subtract and rearrange, polish every word until you can, honestly, read someone else’s work and think, Hey, mine’s better than that. When you reach that stage, it’s time to find a publisher.

Now, I can’t speak for publishing houses, but I imagine each must receive thousands of submissions every year. The competition is stiff. You have to sell your book right out of the envelope, so to speak, convince the house you are contacting that this book is worthy of sale. To that end, you have to first sit back with a blank canvas, choose the most important plot elements, and condense your book into a two-page synopsis. It has to be concise and tell the basic story, and it absolutely has to be free of typos and editing mistakes. Your writing style will be judged here.

Next comes the query letter, these days an email containing your completed manuscript and synopsis, and an explanation to catch the attention of the submissions department. I begin by naming the title, tell how many words and if the work is complete, the genre, and if the book is part of a series, the series title. A blurb outlining the idea of the story follows, and it should be brief, generally 150 words, and should make the reader want to know more. This is the same text you browse through on the back covers at your local bookstore. Now thank them for their time and consideration, and push send.

Then you sit back and wait for a reply. And trust me on this as well–it’s a killer. It may take as little as two, or as many as four weeks to receive a reply, depending upon how busy the publishing house is at the time. You really don’t want to hear back any sooner than that. A reply that comes two days later is probably a “Thank you, but not what we’re looking for” let down. In my opinion, the longer the wait, the more closely they’re considering offering you a contract. Don’t send followup messages every day and irritate the crap out of them, just be patient.

At long last, if you’re good and very lucky, someone will offer you a contract. Read it. Read it again. If you agree to the terms, sign and mail back. Now you can call yourself a published author. Go ahead and do your happy dance, you definitely deserve it! But the journey does not end there. Oh, no. You’ve only reached the top of the mountain. Now you have to work your way down the other side. And this, to many, seems the most surprising of all.

While you’re waiting to be assigned an editor, you’ll polish your blurb and submit information to the company for the development of your cover. You probably have a pretty good idea what your cover should look like, and you can express those ideas here. I’ve often found that giving just the right info–main character descriptions, etc.–and letting the artist do his/her thing is best. Once the final product is approved both by you and management, you can use the image to promote interest in your book.

By now, your editor is probably ready for you. Be prepared for compromise, and don’t be too much in love with your own words. These people are professionals, and know what works. Be patient, tolerant, and cooperative. Most of the time, you’ll progress smoothly through this step. You’ll go around a few times before you’re both happy with the finished product and are ready for formatting.

But there will be times when standing your ground is crucial. A good case in point is my own journey through Twilight Destiny, my first Haven’s Realm novel. The editor I drew seemed, for the most part, fixated on the Twilight saga, and pestered me no end with, “Oh, no, this is too much like in New Moon,” or, “That happened in Breaking Dawn.” Since I hadn’t read Twilight, and still haven’t, I didn’t understand. Cultural aspects of the vampire genre such as a mortal becoming impregnated by a vampire are not new; they existed in publications decades, if not more than a century, ago. I finally had to say, “Look. The story is what it is.” Thankfully, when I moved on to book two, I was reassigned, and my new editor loves my work. I give her my full cooperation, but there are times when I need to explain why something is said a certain way, or point to a reference earlier in the story. I do have to say, however, that sometimes my editor has a suggestion on word usage, such as British slang or swear, that vastly improves that one sentence.

At this stage, most of your pre-release work is done. You’ll see an email or two while the work is assembled and formatted, and I strongly recommend reviewing the entire manuscript every time. Until the day it goes live, there’s still time to correct that troublesome typo. In the meantime, you can organize your release party and prepare yourself for the day your book goes live. When that day finally arrives, and you’re holding a copy of your very own book in your hot little hands, do another happy dance, and move on to marketing. And, oh yes, get started on that next book!

Thank you for spending time with me today, cherished readers!

Tamara Monteau

What are Damphere?

Recently, I had a wonderful opportunity to spend time with a new friend and fan. In the smattering of various conversation topics came a few comments and questions regarding Haven’s Realm, my favorite subject. One she asked mirrored a few more I’ve received over time, the origin of the damphere. I thought it time to tell you about these marvelous, inherently dangerous, creatures.

When I wrote my first novel, Twilight Destiny, back in 2003, the idea of a mortal being impregnated by a vampire wasn’t new. I had, in fact, read a shockingly unique twist by Linda Lael Miller, where one of my favorite female characters becomes impregnated by her mortal lover. I loved the idea. For her. I wanted another approach.

I like to do research online, and don’t swear by any one source. I often enjoy finding blog sites and forums I can browse through, especially when attempting to fully grasp a concept based more on myth and legend than on fact. Precious little information of any real credence was available at the time, and I really got a giggle over some of the ideas floating around in cyberspace.

Research indicated that a damphere is the hybrid result of a vampire impregnating a mortal. Please note that I did not say human. I pondered this while I read several articles describing damphere bears, wolves, and even beavers, and shook my head against the irrationality. The immortal sire would have to be of the same species in order to thusly procreate, and since most animals lack a sense of romance in their mating rituals, in fact lack all but basic procreational instincts, they probably won’t find their way into Haven’s Realm.

I concluded, for the sake of my series, that the male vampire retains his seed. He couldn’t produce a damphere without it. Women, however, lose the ability to nurture life. Their bodies probably still have eggs, but daily rest would restore any tissue altered in the course of the previous night. Bye bye baby. If pressed, through my writings, I’ll simply explain that the vampiress’ physiology prevents the eggs from being released. After all, they don’t go through “that time of the month.”

It takes a mortal woman and a willing vampire to create a vampire-human hybrid. That goes without saying. I’ve mentioned in my writings that birthing a damphere takes a great deal of willpower and fortitude. If you haven’t read my work, I’ll only tell you that Catherine, my first heroine, nearly dies in the attempt during my second story. Carrying the child would not be a problem that can’t be overcome with the best diet and exercise. Any baby draws what elements it needs from its mother’s body, so replenishing these nutrients is vital. She’ll need all her strength and endurance in the end.

Mentally, damphere are aware the moment their microscopic hearts begin to beat. They develop a strong life force, feeding, unfortunately, on that of their hosts. By the time they’re ready to emerge, the mother’s life is dependently connected to the child’s. Usually, the moment the baby draws breath, his mother dies. Tragic.

Thankfully, I’ve found a handy way around that problem. Consequences derived from the events in book two give two of my Council Elders unique skills. Combine this with their growing understanding of the half-breeds and their capabilities, and the hope they won’t become lethal enemies, and you’ll understand why the Council is now no longer adverse to the subject. Whether or not more children are born to my vampire family remains to be seen.

The exact nature of my youngest characters is not yet clear. As I’ve said in other articles, I write what my imagined friends tell me to. At this time, three damphere belong to Haven’s Community. The MacAaron twins reached the celebration of their fourth year, and are displaying the intelligence and vocal skills of teenagers. Their bodies, right now, are growing in sync with their ages, but not their minds. Already they’ve learned how to manipulate their environment, opening doors and such, to the dismay of their parents. Little Devon has already mastered aggressive skills his father sometimes needs to circumvent.

As they grow older, physical aging will slow, granting them, perhaps, centuries of life through their immortal parent’s aggressive and persistent physiology. But that is not all they inherit. Damphere typically have all the powers of the vampire, with the freedoms of a mortal. Although some suffer a mild thirst, they usually eat solid food. They have the advantage of daylight tolerance, making them potentially lethal enemies. It was one of these who killed Lysander, one time Elder and sire to Antonia, the only woman on the Council. It’s no wonder she acted the way she did on discovering Catherine’s condition.

The most recent addition is a boy of nine, the product of a demented vampire’s tendencies. His mother failed to survive confinement, leaving him to the protection and support of the Chancellor of the Savant. Unfortunately, Lorenz suffers from autism, along with isolated motor and language deficiencies. Carloman and I are placing all our hopes in my uniquely talented Dragon/seer friend, Hope, that she find a way to break through the boy’s isolation and bring him out to the real world before the power growing inside him destroys himself and all those around him.

I hope this answers your questions. Please feel free to ask more. In fact, I look forward to suggestions for my next article. Thank you for dropping by, Cherished Readers!

~Tamara Monteau

Secret Cravings 4th Anniversary Blog Hop

WINNER SELECTED! Congratulations this time go to Rebecca Ray. I will notify her via email. Thank you all for participating in the SCP Anniversary blog hop and for expressing your interest in Haven’s Realm. I hope to see you again soon!10906747_10204710393298529_1088445810_oIt’s hard to believe I’ve been with SCP for over three years now. My, how the time has flown. Welcome, friends and cherished readers, to our 4th Anniversary Blog Hop! At the conclusion of this event, I will award one lucky commenter an e-copy of their title of choice from my Haven’s Realm saga. Please remember to leave contact information in your comments.

I became a member of the Secret Cravings family upon completion of my fourth novel, and while I waited on the contract, they reviewed and accepted my previously self-published works. Haven’s Realm is now five stories strong, and a sixth is in the final stages of completion. Let me tell you about my unique vampire series.

The vampires of the Community enjoy a special relationship with higher powers, a Bargain never before conceived. Jason, erstwhile king of ancient Greece, leads his Council, a group of seven Elders charged with upholding human Virtues. Their only wish is to be left in peace to explore themselves and all of creation – but recent trials have shattered the peace they covet.

Print Cover FrontI begin with Twilight Destiny, in which a Scottish vampire learns the meaning of love and trust with a profoundly innocent young girl. This sweet romance turns tragic when a hunter attacks the Community’s Realm, drawing Joshua away from his young bride. When he becomes missing and is presumed dead, Catherine is left alone to face the judgment of the Council.

This book is available in e-format for FREE! Visit your favorite online retailer and download your copy today!!!

The Darker Path cover1The Darker Path takes a side trip to a distant world, where an empress with extraordinary mental abilities is brought by a supernatural force to New England, where she meets an angry, remorseful vampire. Unable to understand the fierce attraction that rises between them, Ki’ara searches for answers, and finds herself a captive of the Community. Her visit with the Council has a profound impact on some of its members, while their answers bring more questions and divides her heart between her love for Colton and the needs of her people.

WhileDragon Lord Cover_SM I worked to hear what Jason would tell me, Ronan shouldered his way in, and Dragon Lord became the third installment. Older than recorded time, this ancient vampire possesses a uniquely devastating power, one he struggles to hold at bay when he becomes unexpectedly bound to a Homeland Security field agent. This action-packed adventure follows their quest to contact the Community for help against an international crime syndicate.

HavensKing_SMFinally, it was Jason’s turn. This vampire of ancient Greece falls in love at first sight with Carrington police officer Mirissa Wellston, drawing unwanted attention from his enemies. Can love survive the onslaught of vicious Rogue vampires and a human hunter? Or will Hera and Ares finally have their way?

Secrets&Promises_SMWith most of my newborn clan’s culture fleshed out, it was time to reveal the true magic of the Community. Secrets & Promises lives up to its name, fulfilling promises both old and new, and revealing the mysteries my readers have asked about. Vincent, the broody and enigmatic member of my Council, stands against his brethren in defense of their long-sought-after hunter, placing his existence, and the Council’s balance, at risk. Chari, a genetic scientist, has been hunting Rogue vampires in hopes of finding a cure. Surrendering to Vincent is a matter of survival, but when she learns of her spiritual past with this tormented vampire, her entire world and mindset are shaken to the core.

The sixth story in the Haven’s Realm lineup is almost ready for submission to SCP, and I feel confident it will be accepted. Vampire romance novelist Skye Renault has been dreaming of vampires, and two in particular, most of her young life. When she learns they’re real, her life entangles with theirs, repeating their history of romance competitions. While cousins Lucien, a Savant, and Christian, a member of the Community’s Council, compete as gentlemen for her heart, an ancient enemy returns, endangering all their lives. Keep your eyes open for Midnight Skye!

I have ideas for at least nine more stories! I never dreamed, when I first picked up a pen and legal pad in 1993, that I could ever take it this far. I owe it all to the publisher and staff of Secret Cravings Publishing. Please return to the SCP hub,, and check out more amazing authors!

Learn more about me and my work here:

Don’t forget to comment for a chance to win one of my Haven’s Realm stories, and leave me contact information in case you win!

~Tamara Monteau

SCP Wounded Warrior Blog Hop

WINNER SELECTED! Congratulations go to Danielle A. Please contact me to receive your prize.

Thank all of you for visiting this post and placing your comments. Although I didn’t reach the primary goal of 30 comments, I will donate $30 to the Wounded Warrior project before the end of the day. Merry Christmas from Haven’s Realm!

1978878_10204337479015905_6514324866671203434_nI love the holiday season! It’s a time to let down your hair, reflect on all your thankful for, and celebrate the love of God and family. Here is an opportunity to embrace each other and the peace that passes understanding. But not everyone can let go of their cares–even the act of surviving from one day to the next is a physical and emotional challenge. This is why I’m deeply honored to do my part to support those whose sacrifice helped to ensure our freedom through Secret Cravings Publishing’s Wounded Warrior Blog Hop.

I’ve been charged with pledging a dollar to the Wounded Warrior Project for every commenter, with a $30 goal. As in Hops past, I’ll go the extra yard and add a dollar for each additional comment, so please spread the word and dig into my pocketbook. One lucky commenter will receive a free e-copy of my latest book, Secrets & Promises, Haven’s Realm 5, at the conclusion of this event. If I reach 50 commenters, my personal goal, I’ll select two winners!

Haven’s Realm is a unique vampire romance series. The vampires of the Community. led by Jason and his Council, have a Bargain with higher powers. Each member of the Council is charged with upholding a Virtue, their balance bravely supported by their king. This is all explained in detail in the fifth book, so I won’t go too far today. Instead, I’ll share an excerpt from Haven’s King, the fourth installment in the series and the closest I can come to celebrating our warriors.

Mirissa Wellston, a young Carrington police officer, is still adjusting to the fact her boyfriend is a vampire, a man with an unfortunate history with certain ancient gods. With Hera, the Greek Queen of the Gods, gunning for her out of spite, and Ares, God of War, sending waves of evil Rogue vampires to attack her city, she and Jason have no choice but to appeal to the Powers for assistance. Miri’s guardian, a warrior angel named Tobias, takes the Council’s entreaty to Archangel Michael, leaving her to the support and protection of Jason and his Community. Because, at this point, the safety and security of the Realm hinges on her personal safety, she and Jason decide to await his return in their Fulcrum, GA, safe house…

The days stretched before them like a quiet sea, the wind and the waves as silent and still as the touch of death. Jason and Mirissa dared not venture beyond the confines of Gale’s home for fear Hera, Ares and their minions were prepared for attack. Jason happily shared his bed with her, but insisted they both remain fully clothed. Although she fully understood his forbearance, a part of her wished for more. That part grew exponentially with each passing day.

She found herself getting used to having vampires around her. It seemed like there were usually at least three present in addition to Jason at all times. Some of the visiting forces used the home as a base and shelter. She helped Gale patch up their wounded warriors so none of them bled out while Jason watched in fascination. She felt his wonder at her quick and easy acceptance of his people and culture. Never once did any vampire make her feel threatened in any way. Those whose eyes touched hers for the first time seemed to recognize her on sight, and she was treated with the utmost respect and courtesy.

Jason presided over every meeting held while she sat back and watched. She could easily see why the ancients revered him as they did. He was a natural leader, well loved and respected among his peers. Not one of them would ever dare cross him, and not just in deference to his power. She began to feel she was truly engaged to a King.

But while she hid safe and secure in Gale’s nurturing shelter, the rest of Carrington and Fulcrum’s citizens were still falling under attack, though the main thrust of their campaign fell apart when Tobias dealt his blow. Jason and Mirissa speculated while they waited for word from Tobias, and tried to prepare themselves for any new scheme the gods might work up against them.

The enforcers worked diligently in their defense of the city, but one or two Rogues still managed to slip past their ranks from time to time. The victims they recovered were destroyed by fire. Jason said they all had the Rogue poison in them, and destroying their bodies before they rise is the only kindness his people could offer. She understood, but part of her wondered if she knew any of those poor, unfortunate souls.

Thank you for visiting! Please remember to comment below for your chance to win, and return to SCP’s hub ( to visit with other authors and qualify for more prizes! Merry Christmas everyone, from me, my family, and Haven’s Realm!

Where to find Tamara:


Hump Day Hook

Good Wednesday! It’s hard to believe December is here already! Where did this year go? Well, welcome to another edition of the Hump Day Hook! Today I’ll share a snippet from my work in progress, Midnight Skye. This piece comes near the end, and sits at the crux of Skye’s dilemma.

“Torn between two lovers” takes on a whole new meaning when the ones who love you are vampires, and while the joys of love helped my confused heroine step from dreaming to reality, the agony of love just might destroy her. Here we find her walking the massive gardens of Blackhawk, the Savant clan stronghold, contemplating her decision after each man presents his offer.

After (Lucien) left, she paced the garden paths deep in troubled thought. They were both the same, and yet so different—two sides of one incredible coin. Both were men of strong character, firmly grounded in their responsibilities, honorable and true. Lucien wanted to possess her. His dark passion would set fire to her nights for all eternity. No doubt he would challenge her, mold her into the best Savant she could be. Christian’s love would set her free—he would hold her to him with tenderness and devotion, and provide a peaceful, fulfilling life. One of them had to come out the victor, but whom should she choose?

A tremor, like a mild earthquake, shook her core, stealing her breath and stuttering her heart while the fissure in her soul breached. She dropped to a marble bench to catch her breath. With her heart pounding unsteadily and pain like a cyclone tearing through her, she didn’t hear the approach of still more visitors to her private hell. Tears streamed down her face when she looked up, surprised to see Mirissa and her mother standing before her with sympathy in their eyes. Trembling and unstable, she rose respectfully and met the queen’s concerned gaze.

“I can’t do it,” she confessed, her voice choked. “I’d much rather die.”

I meant to have this work completed and submitted by the end of October, but once again time has gotten away from me. I have just three chapters left to review. Hopefully, Christmas won’t overwhelm me like it did last year. Thank you all for your patience!

Thhumpdayhookank you for visiting. Please return to the Hump Day Hook hub for more great snippets, and have a wonderful day!

~Tamara Monteau

Print Cover FrontDid you know Twilight Destiny, Haven’s Realm 1, is now available for free from your favorite online seller? Download your copy today!

Hump Day Hook – GIVEAWAY!

Happy Wednesday, cherished readers, and welcome to another edition of the Hump Day Hook, a weekly blog hop where authors share snippets from their works in progress or published stories. Today I thought I’d kick off the Thanksgiving season by offering another giveaway. One lucky commenter will win an e-copy of Haven’s King, Haven’s Realm 4.

WINNER SELECTED! Congratulations to Susanne Matthews, the winner of today’s drawing.

In keeping with today’s theme, I’ll share the only excerpt in my work that mentions this annual mass consumption of seasonal delicacies. Now, you know vampires can’t eat solid food, so events like this are usually avoided. In the following scene, vampire Jason and his love interest, Mirissa, attend the traditional dinner party with her partner and his family.

HavensKing_SMTanya insisted Jason and Mirissa join them for the Thanksgiving Day Feast. Jason tried hard to back out of the invitation, but when Tanya invites you to dinner, it’s a given that you will accept—to her, anyway. She would not take no for an answer. So he sat with discomfort only Mirissa understood, emptied the plate Tanya insisted he eat, commented on the deliciousness of the meal, and excused himself to use the bathroom. He winked at her as he left the table.

While Tanya and Max talked unaware and the boys chattered, Mirissa heard him close the bathroom door and turn on the sink tap. He flushed to cover the sound she picked up anyway as he purged himself of the meal. When he came out again, he looked like he felt better. That’s why I don’t like attending dinner parties, he sent her while he helped Max clear the table.

I don’t blame you there, she returned sympathetically while she mopped gravy off Timmy’s face with her third napkin.

I and my Community are thankful for the love and support of our many fans. We sincerely hope your holiday season is filled with blessings to delight both the heart and soul.

Thhumpdayhookank you for visiting. Please return to the Hump Day Hook hub for more great snippets, and have a wonderful day!

~Tamara Monteau

Print Cover FrontDid you know Twilight Destiny, Haven’s Realm 1, is now available for free from your favorite online seller? Download your copy today!

Hump Day Hook

Happy Wednesday, cherished readers, and welcome to another edition of the Hump Day Hook, a weekly blog where authors share snippets from their work. Today I want to share another excerpt from my sixth Haven’s Realm book, to be entitled Midnight Skye. I apologize in advance for its length, but I couldn’t resist. I hope you like it. Happy Halloween!

To set you up, Summer Skye Renault is gravely injured and near death when the dark entity that haunted her dreams appears. After remembering his presence from years before, when she fell through an old well cover and he came to her aid, she allows him to blend with her. While he works internally to repair her injuries, she slips into the oddest dream she’d ever had, and learns at last the reason for the nightmares she’d had since their first encounter.Print Cover Front

Did you know that Twilight Destiny, Haven’s Realm 1, is FREE? Visit your online bookseller and download your copy today!


The silhouette of a man materialized at the edge of the shadows. “Thank you for this, Summer Skye. I hoped you would find the courage to trust.”

“Ha-how do you know my name?”

He chuckled softly, the sound frighteningly familiar. “You told me, all those years ago.”

She took a deep breath, bracing herself. “Who are you?”

“The master of this house.” The study materialized around her. The furnishings were different, the books were back on the shelves, and the fireplace was brightly alight, casting flickering shadows throughout the room.

She shot her gaze around the empty room with rising nervousness, feeling the last piece of her puzzle was at hand. “Did you die here? Is that why you won’t move on?”

He chuckled again. “No, ma chère. I live, and I need your help.”

Shock drove her to her knees when he appeared before her—an image from her favorite dreams, the creation of her deepest fantasies. “Lucien!” He wore the same suit she’d last seen him wear, the one he’d left Blackhawk wearing—deep gray with black pinstripes, a crisp white shirt and broad black tie. His hair was long, the way he’d always worn it, but slicked back and tied at the base of his neck. A short beard and mustache in the Van Dyke style framed lips she knew would be soft yet demanding.

His dark brows drew downward at the sound of his name. The smile dropped from his face, and tension replaced his casual demeanor. “How do you know me?”

She tried hard to recover from the shock, but as she worked through the thick barrier toward understanding, terror appeared on the other side. “This is a trick, isn’t it? Y-you just look like someone familiar to me. You can’t be…you.”

He frowned in obvious confusion. “What are you talking about, woman? Of course I am me. Why wouldn’t I be?”

“Because I made you up, that’s why!” She jumped to her feet and backed away, her heart pounding so loudly it seemed to rattle the walls. Adrenalin rushed in, placing a dangerous load on her diminished resources. “I dreamed you. You’re not real. You can’t be real!”

humpdayhookThank you for visiting. Please return to the Hump Day Hook hub for more great snippets, and have a wonderful day!

Tamara Monteau

Hump Day Hook

Happy Wednesday, cherished readers! Welcome to another edition of the Hump Day Hook, a weekly blog hop where authors share a tidbit from their works in progress or published novels. Today I thought I’d share a snippet from my upcoming novel, Midnight Skye, Haven’s Realm 6, which I hope to have ready for submission to SCP at the end of the month.

Author Skye Renault has been dreaming of two vampires ever since she fell in the well at D’Arc Estate. When her dreams end, she returns to the mansion seeking answers, and finds the home troubled by spirit or poltergeist invasion. After entertaining several psychic investigators and turning away several more, she settles down for a nap that is interrupted by an unexpected visitor.

Skye found it more than difficult not to stare bug-eyed and agape. After all, it isn’t every day a man you’ve dreamed of and fantasized about more than half your life appears on your doorstep. She called on all her years of practice to control the emotional turmoil his presence inspired. Deep inside, where she hoped he couldn’t see, she was on the verge of collapse. But the man who’d just introduced himself as Christian Lafontaine was in no way related to the one in her mind. He can’t possibly be. “I was awake,” she fibbed. “How can I help you?”


Thank you for visiting. Please return to the Hump Day Hook hub for more great snippets, and have a wonderful day!

Tamara Monteau

Hump Day Hook – Giveaway!

Happy Wednesday, cherished readers, and welcome to another snippet for the Hump Day Hook, a weekly blog hop where authors share a tidbit from their works in progress or published novels. Today I’ll focus on Haven’s King. One lucky commenter to this article will win a free e-copy of the fourth Haven’s Realm installment.

WINNER SELECTED: Congratulations for this drawing goes to Kerrianne Coombes. I’ll be contacting her separately. Keep watch here for more Hump Day Hooks!

In the following snippet, police agent Mirissa Wellston is on an undercover mission to solve a chain of rapes happening at one of the local high schools. She’s riding with her suspect, hoping to discover how the girls are being returned home with no memory of the event.

HavensKing_SMHe placed the order and pulled to the window. A red-haired young man with pimples on his cheeks handed over the food with a knowing and anticipatory gleam in his eyes. The alarms in her head wailed painfully. “Here you go,” he said, handing over a kid-sized cup and some fries.

“Thanks.” She nibbled the fries nervously while they headed out of town toward Fulcrum. She suddenly didn’t want the Coke. Something told her the drug was in it. But Jason was right when he doubted her ability to ‘fake it’. She had no idea how the drug would make her behave. She swallowed down half the soda along with her reluctance, and silently finished her fries. The road in front of her blurred. A stab of anxiety hit her, robbing her of air, so she downed the rest of the drink to soothe the ache. It was the last thing she remembered.

humpdayhookThank you for visiting. Please return to the Hump Day Hook hub for more great snippets, and have a wonderful day!

Tamara Monteau

Hump Day Hook – Giveaway

Good morning, cherished readers, and welcome to the return of the Hump Day Hook, a weekly event where authors share snippets of their works or work in progress. Today I’m giving away a copy of Secrets & Promises, Haven’s Realm 5, to one lucky commenter.

WINNER SELECTED: Kathy Heare Watts, you’ve won my drawing. I will be contacting you to award your prize. Congratulations!

My husband insisted upon the following snippet, which is, admittedly, a little longer than the usual single paragraph, but is only 200 words, so I hope you’ll forgive me. In this teaser, Vincent brings to light one of the many secrets surrounding Jason and the Council of Elders.

Secrets&Promises_SMWithout another word, Vincent led her down the stairs and to the library doors. He paused and motioned to the ornate carvings rendered in the ancient oak. “Look upon these images displayed before the place the Council meets. These figures represent the foundation of an idea born of one man’s vision. Look at them, Chari. Give me their names, if you can.”

She studied the figures arranged within the rectangle that was the double-door entrance while memories of her college European tour kicked in. “This maiden, holding a book and a stalk of flowers. I recognize it from a Roman Catholic cathedral I once visited. Isn’t that Chastity, one of the Christian Virtues?”

“Yes. She represents those gifts in Rudy.”

His voice was low, reverent. A strange glow dimly lit his eyes. She turned to the next figure, an old man pouring liquid from a bottle into a cup. A heavy sensation built in her chest. “Temperance?”


The next was a warrior with a kind face and soft eyes, his sword and shield strapped to his back and an olive branch in his hand. “I think this one’s patience.”

“Christian,” he offered softly.

Following the warrior in the circle stood another holding his sword in one hand and an hour glass in the other. “Um, diligence…?”


A strong female figure dressed in a full and flowing gown holding her arms to all the others in either giving or supplication. “And humility.”


An old man with lines of care on his face, offering drink to an obviously needy child. “Kindness.”

“Devon, and now Ronan.”

She hesitated at the sound of the one name that gave her the most shame. Vincent sketched a picture she wasn’t sure she liked. She studied the last one carefully, though she didn’t need to. Only one virtue remained, and one Council member. A man with a beautiful face shrouded in determination hid two women behind his shield and wielded a broadsword.

“Charity.” His voice sounded unusually cold. “Me.”

She turned to study him. He might as well have been another carving, for all the emotion he showed. “Why the virtues? I don’t understand. And where does Jason fit in?”

He pushed open the doors and waved her inside. “This you will now learn.”

humpdayhookThank you for visiting. Please return to the Hump Day Hook hub for more great snippets, and have a wonderful day!

Tamara Monteau