Hiya peeps! We have Elizabeth Silver and Jenny Urban visiting today with their new release In His Majesty’s Service, we have a brilliant guest post from Jenny, a great excerpt and an awesome giveaway, so check out the post and leave a comment to enter the giveaway! <3 ~Pixie~
In His Majesty’s Service
Elizabeth Silver & Jenny Urban
Everyone in the Drion Collective knows that finding your match—the one person in existence with the same soul mark as yours—is the best thing that could ever happen. But the last thing Lord Anders Hawthorne is thinking about when he boards a ship to Drion for the king’s funeral is finding his soul mate.
Captain Zachary O’Connell has the perfect life—his ship, the stars, and no emotional entanglements. When heat sparks between him and Lord Hawthorne, Zach gleefully dives into a no-strings arrangement. He doesn’t expect it to last beyond arrival at Drion, any more than he expects trouble along the way.
Trouble quickly finds them, however, and it soon becomes clear that Lord Hawthorne is not only not who he says he is, but also that he’s the target of a deadly plot. With danger all around them, Zach and Anders must work together to save the Collective. Meanwhile, Zach must come to grips with losing everything he always thought he wanted, to have the one thing he never dreamed he needed.
Riptide Publishing | Amazon US | Amazon UK | B&N | Kobo
Elizabeth & Jenny!
Hi and welcome to our blog tour for In His Majesty’s Service! We’re Elizabeth Silver and Jenny Urban and we’re so excited to share the next few days with you. Join us as we talk about our writing process, our book, and how we’ve managed not to kill each other after a decade and a half of friendship. And don’t forget to enter for one of two prizes: a swag pack including a t-shirt, a bag, and a $5 Riptide gift card among other goodies; and an all new Kindle Fire 7!
Writing the Porn. Er, Sex…
By Jenny Urban
Liz is Plot Girl and I am Porn Girl in our partnership, so I thought I could write a few words about the porn in our books, and in romance in general. I always call it porn, but that’s really only a fraction of what the sex is really about in romance novels. It’s a bigger fraction in erotic romances than in some other styles, but it’s got to be about the emotion rather than just the physical or there’s no connection – none between the characters themselves, and none between the characters and your readers.
I’m also what Liz calls the Pantser. She’s the Plotter and I pretty much literally make it up as I go along. That’s what makes writing the sex scenes easier for me than I think they’d be if I were more of a Plotter. I get in my character’s head from the beginning, so I build on the emotions and personality of the character and jump in, let the sex flow as naturally as possible. I try to keep a picture in my head of what’s happening so I can describe it. And I admit it – I do watch gay porn. Both for inspiration, and because it’s hot. 🙂
You’ll probably find, as I do, that vocabulary is a sticking point. There are only so many different words for a cock and an asshole, or, if you write or read hetero romance, a vagina and breasts. One problem with a limited selection of terms is the fact that you can’t use the same word too many times, especially not within, say, the same paragraph. This holds true for terms describing actions as well. There’s only so many times you can thrust or fuck into or plunge or shove before it gets repetitive. When it comes right down to it, sex is a fairly repetitive activity. That’s sort of the point. But using the same words too frequently catches attention, drawing it away from the picture you want to paint in your reader’s head. My advice on writing it is this: Don’t let the worry about the words distract you from the picture you’re trying to paint, the scene you’re trying to set. That’s what edits are for. Write what you feel, fix the terminology after.
Above all, enjoy it. If you don’t enjoy what you’re writing, your readers won’t either.
Anders rolled his shoulders back, sighed, then adjusted his cuffs to stop himself from checking his wrist chrono for the third time in under five minutes. The chair, curved in the wrong places for anything resembling comfort, pressed awkwardly against Anders’s back and legs like a plastic torture device. There had to be some explanation, at the very least, for why he had yet to find a single chair worth sitting on in the entire space station.
The media screen overhead kept reporting the same news over and over. King James, the leader of the Drion Collective, was dead after a brief but fierce illness. Some commentators were debating if he might have had a fighting chance if his bonded hadn’t died so many years ago, but it was more of a passing mention than anything else while the media streams continually fussed over the transition period. A transition period that was currently full of far too many questions for anyone’s peace of mind; according to tradition, the king was supposed to pass on the crown to his appointed successor, but no one had seen Crown Prince Philip since long before his father’s death.
“He’s in mourning,” the liberal commentator pointed out. “I’d be concerned if he went about business as usual.”
“He has a job to do,” the conservative shot back. “The Collective is without leadership right now for the first time in nearly two hundred years. He can grieve on his own time. Besides, it’s high time Prince Philip came back to the public eye. He’s been hiding for fifteen years, and it’s time to man up. The market is unsteady with the recent flood of substandard black market goods, not to mention the recent wave of recalls all across the technical sector. We need a leader who will step up and do something. Stop hiding in the shadows like a child.”
“You know it’s protocol to protect the crown prince’s identity when there are no other royal children. For someone so fond of tradition, you’re sure quick to dismiss it when it’s inconvenient for you.”
Anders shifted, tugging at the chin-high collar of his new jacket. Dressed all in black, like the rest of the royal family would until the new king was crowned, Anders couldn’t help wondering if those damn talking heads had ever lost someone they cared about, and then been told they were supposed to grieve, but only a little and only so it didn’t inconvenience everyone else.
Beside him, Jackson stilled Anders with a light touch to the knee. “The ship will be here soon, my lord,” he said, never once pausing in his constant scan over all the comings and goings of the room.
Just then, Bern returned from securing their luggage. “The RDC Pallas is on final approach now,” he said without preamble. “They’re waiting on docking clearance; it should only be a few minutes more.”
“It’s about time,” Anders huffed. To be honest, the Pallas had made remarkable time, considering what little notice she’d been given to change course. But knowing that didn’t help Anders get home any faster. The sight of the Royal Navy ship docking right outside the window made him tremble with anxiety merely thinking about where it would take him and why. Still, he made a better effort to contain himself for the next few minutes. Just get home. Worry about the rest later.
The RDC Pallas was a war-class vessel, imposing even against the sizeable space port. Her sleek main body gleamed in the station lights, and the modular sections for guest quarters, cargo, and additional weaponry only added to her massive bulk. Some people were intimidated by the rare ships of the Pallas’s caliber, but Anders had spent enough of his life in space to know there were few places safer for him to be, surrounded by the best and brightest of the king’s Navy.
Still, by the time Anders and his guards were allowed down the gangway to the airlock, it was all he could do not to blow right past the brown-haired officer sent to greet them. Dimly, Anders registered that the man had not only been sporting a crisp uniform with the traditional high-waisted black trousers and the short, open-front jacket of an officer, he also had three blue jeweled pips on his bright-white collar, indicating he was the first officer. Anders didn’t care. All he could think about was getting onboard without letting anyone see how his hands were shaking and that he was perilously close to losing the meager lunch he’d managed to choke down earlier.
Anders heard Jackson greeting the first officer and accepting an offer to show them to their quarters. It was enough of a reminder of where he was—aboard one of His Majesty’s finest ships, detoured specifically to collect a single royal cousin and his two guards—to slow Anders’s stride and allow the others to catch up. His mother would have been appalled at her only son’s behavior, had she lived to see it, but Anders couldn’t let himself relax. He didn’t dare, not yet and certainly not in the open.
At the door to his quarters, Anders at last remembered his manners. “Thank you,” he said, turning to the officer by his side. “And thank your captain for me, as well. I know it can’t have been easy to delay your journey on such short notice.”
The first officer—a young man a few years older than Anders, though not by much—sketched a vaguely formal bow. “You’ll be able to tell him yourself over dinner, my lord,” he said, not quite making eye contact and posture at full attention. “Captain O’Connell asked me to extend an invitation to you and your party to join him at his private table tonight, as is customary.”
Anders acknowledged the offer with a nod of his head, cringing inwardly at the notion of eating shipside rations and making small talk. “Until tonight, then,” he said instead, and swept into his quarters.
Door closed behind him, Anders wasted little time in crossing the small sitting room to the equally cramped bedroom, pulling off his boots and collapsing on the comfortable bed nestled in the corner. Maybe he’d get lucky and Jackson and Bern would forget to wake him until they landed in Drion.
Anders snorted to himself. Dare to dream.
Read more at: https://riptidepublishing.com/titles/in-his-majestys-service (just click the excerpt tab)
About Elizabeth & Jenny!
Elizabeth Silver is a writer, a tarot reader, a Level Two Cat Lady, and an internet junkie. Her day job is terribly dull, her hobbies oddly specific and quirky, and her husband the most patient person a writer could ask for.
A New Jersey native, Liz is a proud nerd and an awkward human being. She likes to think it makes her endearing. When not writing, Liz can be found collecting tarot cards, chasing Pokemon, fighting her way out of YouTube spirals, and/or performing online searches that will probably land her on a government list somewhere someday.
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About Jenny Urban
Jenny Urban lives not too far from Las Vegas—but not too close—with two cats named after fictional wizards. She has been writing with coauthor Elizabeth Silver for nearly fifteen years, with their first book published in 2010.
When not writing or at the evil day job, she loves to sing, play the piano, read, and watch monster-hunting brothers on TV.
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