Wednesday, 2 February 2011

My 2009 NaNoWriMo Project is now released - The Count's Lair

I'm excited to be here at Lindsay's Romantics blog today. Thanks so much for having me here today.

Just a little about me: I was born in Manchester, New Hampshire. After graduating from Central High, I joined the US Army. I spent 11 years in the military, 7 in Germany. While in the military, I earned a BS in Political Science from California Baptist University in Riverside, CA in 1995. I left the Army in 1997 and settled in California, but my favorite football team is still the New England Patriots. I work for LAPD as a 911 dispatcher. I've been married for 19 years. I have two boys, Andrew, 8, and Joseph, 4.

"The Count's Lair" just released yesterday with Desert Breeze Publishing. It's a "sophisticated" paranormal romance set in Budapest, Hungary during Christmas time in 1901. I had never participated NaNoWriMo before 2009, so the novel was my first project. NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. The goal? Write a 50,000 word novel in 1 month. A challenge for sure, but definitely a motivator for me.

The goal is to write 1600 words a day. Do-able if you can keep your focus. "The Count's Lair" clocked in with over 52,000 words at the end of the month. It felt nice to be a NaNoWriMo winner, but I wasn't finished with the story. I barely wrote another 10,000 words in December, wrapping up the novel in early FEB 2010.

It's nice to see the final product after all that toil.

Here's the blurb:

Count Anton Varga is haunted by the curse of the moon. It tugs on his emotions, ravishing his soul. Anton abhors the beast he must learn to tame if he is to find peace. 

Lady Amelia Andrássy is an accomplished pianist, but her life in Budapest had been filled with heartache. When Amelia faints in the Duma's bookstore, it's Anton's strong arms that cradle her fall. His unusual indigo eyes spark with hers, replacing their individual loneliness with the promise of feral passion. 

After a two month separation, Anton is ready to walk into Amelia's life again, but is Amelia ready to fan the spark they shared into a flame? 

Enjoy this excerpt:

The doorbell rang again. Amelia stood. Anxiety pulsed through her.
Bryant opened the door and bowed. "Count Varga."

Amelia caught her breath. Anton's cheeks were full of color from being outside. His unusual sapphire eyes sparkled like glittering jewels that had just been taken from an undiscovered mine. "Hello, Amelia."

"Hello, Anton. How are you?"
"Well. Dress warmly. It's cold outside."

She nodded, thankful she wore a winter dress that went down to her ankles atop her leather boots.

Bryant went to a nearby closet and removed her winter cloak, but Anton took it from him. "Allow me."

Count Varga looked like a tamed jackal. His hair was wind-tussled, and his overcoat accented his muscled physique. His scarf hung casually over his shoulders, too, as if it were just for show. She was completely disarmed by his full red lips, more vulnerable to his presence than she would have thought. Anton draped the cloak over her shoulders and snapped the front clasp. Sparks of warmth jumped off him, saturating her body. His smoldering sapphire eyes found hers. She adored his attention.

Bryant handed her a pair of gloves, her hat, and her scarf. She hung the scarf around her neck and put on her hat.

"Are you ready?" Anton asked.

She nodded, and he escorted her to his auto. The cold winter air nipped at her cheeks. It was only the first week of December, but Anton hadn't joked about the temperature.

They got in the back seat of his auto, and the driver took off. The auto was warm. Amelia put her gloves in her lap.

"Some people have set up a tent in the middle of the market and are selling goulash and warm apple wine. Do you mind having lunch there? I thought we'd take in the market's ambience."

"Not at all."
"I've missed you." He turned in the seat to look at her.

She smiled. "I've missed you, too."
"Did you get your invitation to the noble's ball?" he asked.

"Yes. I got it today."
"May I escort you?"

"I would like that," she replied. She'd like it a lot. Too much for her own good, but she wasn't prepared to admit that to him just yet. He already had unsettled her. It was exciting to be in the presence of a man so confident and secure. The last few weeks with Mikel, she'd thought he had avoided her because of the success of her piano concerts.


The Count's Lair is avail as ebook for Kindle, B&N Nook, Sony Ereader, and Kobo. You can also download a copy from the Publisher's Website at:

You can find me on the web at:






LK Hunsaker said...

Congrats on your release, Steph! It's nice to see Nano novels make it out into the world. :-)

Kaye Manro said...

Congrats to you Steph! It is nice to know nanos do get published!

Celia Yeary said...

STEPH--congratulations on the new book. The cover is very good, don't you think? Very appropriate for this book. Best wishes for many sales! Celia

SherryGLoag said...

NaNo 2009 seems to have been very productive as I've learned of several books published that started in NaNo that year.
The Count'd Lair sounds intriguing. Best wishes with it.

Lindsay Townsend said...

What an amazing cover, Steph! It looks glorious! Well done on producing such a wonderful novel and wishing you many sales.

Savanna Kougar said...

Sreph, congrats on your latest release. Fab cover and compelling excerpt. Wishing you mucho sales.

StephB said...

Yes, It is absolutely amazing how NaNoWriMo really motivated to complete the project. You've had a couple of NaNoWriMo novels, yourself, haven't you?

Do you have any NaNoWriMo novels?

Celia & Lindsay,
I love the cover! Jenifer did a wonderful job caputuring the mood of the book with it.

I hope in a way it inspires - You can do a lot with NaNoWriMo!

Thanks so much for popping in!