Hello! Welcome to my blog, Draven, and thank you for answering my
nosy discerning, questions! First, please tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of stories you like to write. Would you say there is an underlying theme behind your stories?
I’m a born and raised Oregonian. I’ve traveled extensively in search of mischief and mayhem to fill my books. Research is a great excuse to get out in the world and do some crazy things. My ventures have been quite successful in inspiring a wealth of stories. Of course at the end of the day, coffee within reach, laptop at the ready is where I finds her peace.
I write m/m erotic fiction with a lot of romance and real life situations thrown in to spice it up. I’d say the underlying theme is strong men being open about who they are and revealing the heroic alpha side within.
What part of the world do you call home? Can you tell us a little about where you grew up and where you live now?
I live in the great northwest and actually enjoy the abundance of rain that we receive. In an odd way I actually write better in stormy weather, perhaps it is the energy that accompanies the thunder and lightning. I grew up in a small town back east, so a lot of fishing and camping, even horseback riding. I have to say that while my hometown is a great place to visit my muse seems to flourish in a more chaotic environment.
The Zombie Apocalypse has begun. You have a van with enough gas to get you to a defensible location. In addition to your immediate family, you can take three of your own characters with you. Who would you chose and why?
Just three? Are you sure I can’t just strap some of my family members to the roof of the car? I suppose if I had to choose, I’d say Merek, Grey and Simon. Merek is very knowledgeable about hunting and scouting the land as most wolf shifters are. Grey is a strong support individual. I can see him constructing new houses and helping to establish a strong society. Simon would be there for levity. There always needs to be that person who is able to lift everyone’s spirits in times of stress. Plus, who doesn’t want three hunky men hanging around?
Research: love it or hate it? Which of your stories has required the most research?
I actually really love research. I’ve met a lot of great people and had a great deal of fun. If anything it has been a perk. Thus far Grey’s Hidden Fire has taken the most research. I wanted to get all of the terminology and routines correct. Granted hanging out with firefighters wasn’t exactly a hardship.
Any advice for the 20 year old you?
Don’t be afraid to put your writing out there. Everyone has a different writing style and it is important to be confident in your own.
Intelligence and a sense of humor are paramount, but what’s your favorite physical characteristic on a man or woman? What do you check out first? What makes you decide if someone’s good looking or not?
I check out a man’s eyes and his smile because they can be so very sexy. A smile can completely change a man’s face. The way a man looks at you so intently you can feel his desire from ten feet away. That is powerful.
How much do you think that a good blurb and good cover art figure into the success of a story?
I think where cover art is concerned oftentimes that is what draws people into reading a book. There are so many books out there and any little extra flare helps. I’ve loved my covers, mainly because it’s great to see an actual image of my characters. Plus, I’ve been pretty lucky to have fantastic covers. The blurb is equally important. That is why they are so difficult to write. With that short bit of information the author has to hook the reader, intrigue them. However, I also think excerpts are very significant. They allow the readers to see the author’s writing style.
What are your writing goals for 2013? Your personal goals?
I intend to release more books in the Pack of Light series. In Scent of a Wolf I’ve introduced a lot of characters I want to build on. With the Firehouse Six series I already have Fire and Mistletoe coming out in December and Simon’s story written as well. I guess ultimately I want to be able to write for a living. I love giving people a fantasy to lose themselves in.
Scent of a Wolf: release date November 12th (buy link not yet available, but be sure to check out Draven’s links so you can keep up to date on the release news!)
Blurb: Jace Shaw is one of the few survivors of a rare wolf pack. He spends his days on the run and his nights in another world with a man he’s only ever dreamed about. To sleep is to feel his dream man’s hands on his body and hear wicked whispered words. But when the sun rises reality crashes in. The evil that destroyed his birth pack hunts his kind down in search of a way to control their power. To take the light.
Merek Wahya is an alpha dealing with the issues of being newly appointed, but those all falls away when he closes his eyes at night. A man with moonlit hair and mercury eyes crawls into bed with him. When he wakes it’s to a painful arousal no one can satisfy. He soon learns their nocturnal meetings were foreplay for a passionate face-to-face encounter.
When Merek’s wolf catches Jace’s scent he knows he’s found his mate. The joy of this discovery is shadowed by the trouble that follows Jace. His mate is embroiled in a battle between two ancient packs. A war Merek must now fight and if he fails he could lose his mate forever.
Jace’s scent hit Merek like a pile of bricks. The familiar scent called out to him. He took a deep breath, and there it was—Jace’s sweet and earthy smell. His mate. Here in the real world. There was no doubt about it. Merek’s wolf perked its ears up and stood waiting to change beneath the shifting sands of his skin.
With that thought panic slammed into him. His heart pounded a savage beat as the urge to get to his mate swept through him. He rose. His form changed even as he prowled forward, away from the meeting hall and in the direction of Emma’s cottage.
“Merek?” Sean asked, apparently confused by his sudden movement. “Wha—”
“My mate.” Merek growled and quickly shifted into the form of a midnight-black wolf.
He advanced through the underbrush, Sean following close behind in wolf form, scarcely a consideration. The only thing that remained of their human forms was a pile of ruined clothes.
The pull to get to his mate made the distance seem never ending, although it only took about five minutes to reach the clearing just beyond the tree line from Emma’s house. Two dead half-shifted weres lay in the center. A third were—a large, mangy gray—slammed the body of a man against the base of a tree. Merek felt the pain of that impact as if it were his body.
He snarled a sound full of fury and looked over at Sean. Their gazes briefly locked. Sean’s were alight with the strength to battle.
Merek and Sean burst into the clearing. The action was enough of a distraction to cause the gray wolf to turn before he could deal a killing blow to Merek’s unconscious mate.
Sean leaped at the gray as Merek advanced toward his mate, who was slumped on the ground. Jace’s body was sleek and elongated in a partial transformation. Before Merek’s eyes, the exposed claws on his mate’s feet and hands drew in. The long, toned muscles of his body retracted into his human form. His figure was pale in the moonlight, but streaks of blood marred its perfection. The slender lines of his body denoted strength and stealth. Merek knew those skills alone were what had kept Jace alive. His mate was naked save for the silver hair that flowed around his shoulders and concealed his face beneath its weight.
Merek howled into the night. He crouched closer and nuzzled the pale silver hair from Jace’s face—the soft lips, the bottom fuller than the top, square jawline with the dimple on his chin, and his aquiline nose. Altogether, they made up the man in Merek’s dreams. His mate. A mate who was bleeding from gouges on his chest and stomach. He had bruises already forming around his neck, but what worried Merek most was the blood that was changing his beautiful silver locks to a bright red.
In mere seconds Merek shifted back to human form. Naked, he knelt over his mate. With trembling hands he checked Jace’s pulse. It rebounded faintly against his fingertips. Breathing deeply to keep the pain at bay, he managed to lift the heavy weight of his mate’s body and bolted as fast as he could to Emma’s house.
It wasn’t exactly how he wanted to be naked for the first time with his mate. He would have preferred much different circumstances. Non-life-threatening circumstances. Before he reached for the doorknob, the door flew open to reveal a panic-stricken Emma.
She stepped aside, and he stalked through the door. He laid his mate on the couch in the living room and stared down at him with something akin to wonder.
“Tell me you can fix him.” His voice was a hoarse rasp as if he’d been screaming. He wanted to let loose a pained howl. He wanted the world to know how unfair it was he hadn’t been able to protect his mate. He didn’t want to feel the fear and helplessness that covered him now.
Not even standing in Emma’s domain, filled with light and decorated in shades of emerald and amber, could he find comfort. All he wanted was for his mate to wake up so he could see Jace’s silver eyes sparkling with life.
Emma knelt next to Jace and threaded her fingers through the silver fall of his hair. She closed her eyes and hummed softly. Merek was shocked when the soft locks wound around Emma’s hand. Merek had thought the magical hair was a trick of his imagination played out in his dreams. Then again, he’d thought Jace was a dream, but here he was, in the flesh.
Emma’s eyes opened, tears cresting in them.
“Oh, Jace, sweet child, what have you gone and done now?”
Links for Draven St. James:
Buy Links for Grey’s Hidden Fire