Cover Reveal: Object of my Protection


I’m pumping out a lot of books in this new year. This is one of them. It’s a dystopian romance set a few years out. Again, Winter Bayne has performed her magic. She could have no more crawled into my head and stole my vision for the cover. Thank you, Winter. You’re the greatest.

Here’s a short clip from the book:

Emilie sauntered to the sofa and plopped onto the spot beside me.

“No date tonight?” I stumbled over words. It had been so long since we’d spoken.

“Nope. No date.” Her eyes squinted into a thoughtful pinch. “I’ve been avoiding this subject for a long time. I don’t know why. I guess I’ve just become cold. There’s not a lot in my life that is consistent. I guess it’s made me a little distant.”

“A little?” I would have laughed if I hadn’t thought it would send her back to her room angry.

“Okay, a lot. It comforts me to know that you are always where I am and that I don’t ever have to worry about someone hurting me…but I was just wondering. Why don’t you leave my side? For all this time, there’s been nothing in your life but me. Why don’t you do anything else?”

I wasn’t sure how to answer that.

Emilie’s parents had wanted to be present for this explanation. They had gone on a month-long trip to Taiwan for business. As usual. I couldn’t remember a stretch they’d been home for more than three days since Emilie had hit these most confusing years.

“Don’t you have a family?”

“There are some things about me you can’t know.” I stared straight ahead at the screen.

The black and white flashes of the television illuminated Emilie’s face.

I’d chosen a classic movie channel in hopes of gaining insight on how to deal with Emilie. The modern channels had people who looked like her, but she wasn’t like the modern teens anymore. She’d gone above and beyond.

And at this point, I was ready to give up trying to figure her out.

“Why don’t you date? I know you have a stack of numbers in your room that is beyond ridiculous.” She glanced sideways at me after seeing the movie onscreen. She smiled and shook her head.

“Did you get tired of black? And where are all those God-awful piercings?” I asked dodging the question. Heat filled my cheeks. I had forgotten that she knew about my box.

“You have never called one of them have you?”

“No.” My jaw worked.


“I don’t need them.”

“Everybody needs somebody.”

“I have you. You’re all I need,” I told her. I searched for the remote. Where had I put it? It had been right under the cream-colored pillow. I flipped up the brown one. Nope.

“You have me, but I don’t have you,” she breathed. I wouldn’t have heard her whisper had I been a normal human. But I wasn’t.

Taking my focus off the discovery of the remote, I found a sparkling tear on her cheek.

I didn’t understand. As usual.

“I’m not going anywhere. I’m here for the rest of your life. You do have me.” An uncontrollable urge to take her hand shuddered through me, but I had learned over the last few years that you didn’t touch a woman when you didn’t understand what was going on with them. They did crazy stuff when you did.

“If I had you, we wouldn’t be on this sofa right now…five feet apart.” She stared at the empty space between us.


Black Soul by Odessa Black ~ Review

I’m going to reblog this post if you don’t mind. I loved your critical review. Very in depth. Thank you for the time you spent. 🙂

Chicks,Rogues and Scandals

webpage_20170125_142053 The Forbidden Series #1

Half man, half angel, all soldier.
The souleaters will stop at nothing, even death, to uphold divine law. When duty brings Noah Kavanaugh into Nurse Caroline’s path, he is unprepared for the intense desire igniting between them. Rejecting the impulse to take Caroline as his mate becomes unbearable. The limits of his own self-control are tested. So is his loyalty to the law he upholds.
A forbidden human Caroline is determined to find a cure for the mysterious Noah’s illness. With her blazing attraction to him, she’d willingly sacrifice her heart, body, even her life to end his suffering. However, can she bring herself to make the ultimate sacrifice in order to save them both?

My View

Noah is a Souleater, who after angering the head of the souleaters, the evil Amon he is sentenced to a long and excruciating death, Noah is dying because he…

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People Judge Books by their Cover

In the world of publishing and self-publishing, every author wants to see his or her vision of their books grasped by their cover designer. Winter Bayne takes the bull by the horns. She reaches into the author’s mind and withdraws accurate, striking, and visually stimulating covers.

If you are an author in search of a reasonably priced cover, this is your girl.

Here are a few examples of what she did for me and others:


This is Lilian Oake’s cover for Bounty of the Everdark. Lilian is a fantasy author who really knows how to draw you in. She uses great characterization and very real worlds to hook you and leave you reeling for more.



This is Sarah Hegger’s cover for My Lady Faye. She’s another author who uses fantasy, romance, and gorgeous descriptive writing to give you a real feel of her world.



This is my cover for Black Soul The Forbidden Series 1. I’ll let you be the judge of my writing, but as you can see, Winter is very talented. She’ll work with you until you are happy, and she also makes some of the best banners and promo pictures you can find.

Check her out at or on Facebook!

I promise, you won’t be sorry. 🙂





To celebrate Black Soul’s release, I thought I would give my readers a little background information about me. Where I came from, what I’ve experienced, and who has impacted my life in the most positive ways.

As a little girl, we didn’t have a lot. But we were happy.

In the North Carolina mountains, I ran around my yard in underoos (wonder woman underwear-cami and undies) and pretended I was Wonder Woman. With a piece of rope from my Daddy’s tool shed, I lassoed anything I could and made it tell me the truth. I had no shortage of imagination.

My sister and I didn’t need toys. We had each other, big boxes, sticks, sheets, and buildings to play in. The buildings were cities, any city we wanted to visit, complete with hideaways from the bad guys and portals to other worlds. The sticks, sheets, and boxes were artifacts in whatever scene we acted out. They could be anything. We could be anyone. We had it all.

When we grew older, and running around in your underwear wasn’t kosher, Anna decided to get involved in sports and I delved into the magical world of books. VC Andrews was my first author hero. Her original works were amazing. She had the ability to force you to fall in love, laugh, and cry with ease. When she killed off a character, you mourned their loss as if they were friends of yours, but she did it in a way that was natural, so I was never mad at her. It was the circle of life, the way things happened, the way doors were opened for new characters to enter. I read every story of hers that I could get my hands on.

So many years ago, there were only a few VC Andrews titles, so I moved on to Dean Koontz. It was quite a jump, considering his works were stand alone novels. But they were just as enticing. He helped me fall in love with sci-fi and paranormal romance. His characters were so well developed that I was that character for the duration of the novel. I skipped meals to read. Nothing was more important.

Until, one day when a friend of mine asked me to start writing stories.

At the end of my high school career, I had over 2000 pages of handwritten novels shelved in my room, a permanent pencil indention on the finger that supported my pen or pencil, and friends who begged me to write more. When high school ended, writing was put on hold for the real world. I had to get a job.

After twenty years, I’d married, began opening my home to teens who wanted to hang out, watch movies, and do safe things other than be out on the streets. One of those teens was interested in writing. She started a book on her laptop and asked me to review it.

This brought back memories. That love for the way a pencil felt scraping against a piece of blank paper. The way a world felt when you created it and nothing but your imagination could infiltrate it. Anything could happen.

After telling her it reminded me of writing when I was her age, she asked me to join her in writing. Just for fun. A year passed. The girls begged me to write. Not just a fanfic, but something straight from my imagination. Something that might be worth publishing. So, I bought my own laptop.

Gone were the days of striking through a whole sentence and rewriting it, then having to rewrite the whole page to make it look neat. I had the world at my fingertips in the form of Microsoft Word. And I wouldn’t change a thing, except maybe the number of novels I have written.

That number will advance though. This is going to be my year.

Here’s a tentative list of my works. I’ll add a few new ones in the months to come.

The Cursed Series

Ever After

Ever Bound

Ever Tempted

Ever Lasting


The Forbidden Series

Black Soul




Winter Bayne Cover Design Extraordinaire

Winter Bayne is a cover designer and writer I met on Facebook a few months back. We hit it off when we began talking back and forth about every day life, writing, and her covers. They were striking.

I glance around at covers to see what other authors are doing, what readers seem to like, and gather ideas for my own covers. Deciding that it looked too difficult to try to do and write a novel, edit the novel, and publish it, I outsourced. Of course, Winter Bayne was the only option.

Every single in her portfolio gripped me. She has a way of reaching not only inside the story, but inside the author and grabbing a vision of what would best represent the story and the author. She carries you through the process with her, allowing you to see how each step unfolds into the creation of something you’ll fall in love with. And normally, if you’ll fall in love with it, a reader (or a million readers–hopefully) will fall in love with it, too. Below are some examples of some of the work she’s done for me and other lucky authors.



This was a facebook or twitter banner. She does extra marketing tidbits for you. A wonderful gal, I tell ya.


This is a cover Winter made for Lilian Oake, one of my favorite authors. I’m currently reading this one. I’d highly recommend it to those who love fantasy. Hooked me from the beginning!


Check out Winter’s website if you’re interested in having the best in the industry working for you. She doesn’t just hand you a cover. She gives a bit of her heart and soul in each of the works.

As Winter comes up with new bits of magic, I’ll be sharing them with you, so stay tuned.

Pre-order Black Soul Now!


Releases January 17th! Reserve your copy now. No money due until release day. 🙂

As a gift just for being a subscriber, here’s a scene from Black Soul:


I woke to Caroline in such a tizzy I thought she would have a nervous breakdown.

“Noah! You’re in the floor! Why didn’t you…ohmygosh, you fell didn’t you? You fell. I let

you fall off the sofa. I’m such a—” I interrupted her.

“You’re fine. I chose to sleep here. I didn’t want you to wake and—” she interrupted me.

“And what? You should have woken me! I would have taken you back to your bed.” Her curls fell over the side of the sofa as she stared at me in horror.

I smiled and said, though I wish I’d kept my mouth shut, “Yeah, and maybe that’s what I was trying to avoid. It’s been awhile since I had a girl stay overnight.”

Like, never.

She flopped back and huffed in exasperation missing my innuendo completely. She was difficult to flirt with.

“If the agency walked in here right now, I can’t even imagine.” She shoved the throw off her and wrestled to get up at the same time. She tripped and rolled right off the sofa onto me.

My hands caught her.

Caroline stared down into my eyes, the whole length of her resting on me, and I could feel it all. Every glorious inch. I’m sure my eyes, among other things, didn’t hide my reaction.

“Yeah, the agency might wonder about your intentions,” I said with a grin.

Caroline’s shocked eyes flashed exasperation.

Though I appeared cool, calm and collected, I was breathless. The oxygen in the room was no longer oxygen. It was her. Everything was her.

Her hair was all around my face. Her nose touched mine. Her arms held her up, but her hands were flat on my chest and the contrast of their fragility on the muscles I’d tried to hide was even more troubling. Hot lava shot to my stomach igniting my groin.

She fumbled to get up.

I held her there, my hands feeling more powerful than they’d ever been.

“Noah?” she whispered. Had she noticed I was using both hands?

Damn. Damn. Damn. I loosened my grip and shoved the all too human response to her away. “Sorry. It might be the last time I ever hold someone.”

Her mouth fell open then clamped shut.

I smiled to hide my almost botched my cover.

“Do you have feeling in both hands today? You were…you were holding me with both of them.” She rolled off me and wobbled to a sitting position. Pulling my hands into her lap, she massaged both of them with fearful hope in her eyes.

“That happens sometimes. One day something might not work, the next day, I’ll have a little use of it, then the following day the sensation is totally gone, and it never comes back.” I couldn’t meet her gaze. The lie weighted me down as much as the paralysis did.

Caroline scrambled to get up. “I’ve got to get you out of the floor, and wash you up and then…Me. Oh, god, I bet I’m a mess. I bet I look—”

“Heavenly.” My mouth betrayed me.

She flashed me a surprised look.

“Lies.” With hands shaking, she smoothed her hair as she stood. “This coming from a man who almost froze to death in the floor overnight. You probably have hypothermia.”

“You’re overreacting.”

She took both my hands again and tested their warmth on her cheeks. “I’m such an irresponsible, poor excuse for a caregiver.”

“I thought you were great. And all that talking you did in your sleep. One could learn a lot about what makes you tick.” I smirked.

She gasped. “I didn’t?”

I smiled, nodding. “No, but it would have been interesting if you had.”

She half-nudged/half-kicked me.

“Throw me off the sofa into the floor, make me sleep there, and now you’re kicking me? I might have to report you,” I said as she pulled me to a sitting position.

“You’re so cold.” She ignored me.

“It’s just poor circulation.” It was the truth. Just as the sun sliced through the part in the curtains, my left hand and the lower portion of my arm lost sensation.

Within a minute, she got me to my wheelchair,  then to my bed. Beneath me, the bed was much softer than that hard floor. I’d focused on Caroline so much the whole night, I hadn’t realized how sore the floor had made me.



Over…Overused? (Editing Tips)

Editing out the word over isn’t hard to do. Test the sentence to see if it can work without it. Most instances, it can.

Don’t: I shoved the tray over closer to her.

Do: I shoved the tray closer to her.

Don’t: She slid over beside me.

Do: She slid beside me.

Don’t: I sauntered over to the center of the room.

Do: I sauntered to the center of the room.

In these cases, it’s a filler word and can be struck out. A lot of times we feel it shows direction, but the sentence is clear without it.


Editing: Filler Words

Editing is a daunting task. There are so many things one doesn’t realize needs to go.


Filler words are one of the most important things you can strike from your document.

Here is short list to go by:

  • Just
  • Very
  • Really
  • Literally
  • Quite
  • Perhaps
  • In order
  • Actually
  • Rather
  • Stuff
  • That

You don’t always need to clear out these words, but for the most part if you take them out of a sentence, it will still make sense and it will tighten your pacing.

Stay tuned for more editing advice!

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