Monday, November 26, 2012

Dangerously Mine: Excerpt

Dangerously Mine
By:  A. M. Griffin

I’m excited that my debut book Dangerously Mine is finally available from Ellora’s Cave.

This has been a long journey, which has had many ups and downs along the way. I first completed Dangerously Mine as a self-pub (Taken: Eva) in October 2011. After a lot of positive response, I decided to submit it to Ellora’s Cave.

Ellora’s Cave picked it up in December 2011, contracts signed in February and edits started in March 2012.

I read, write and watch all things science-fiction and paranormal. So, I feel extremely lucky to be afforded this opportunity to join the ranks of science-fiction writers who, with their words, are able to craft the perfect world that will have readers enthralled and engrossed in a new and exciting world.

Dangerously Mine


After aliens invade and conquer Earth, Eva is transported to a distant slave trading planet. Escape and freedom are her only priority, but none of her martial arts training prepared her for what she faces. She finds herself enslaved to the warrior King Taio. Eva’s drawn to this sexy alien male who ignites her heart and body.

Taio is disgusted with the idea of owning a slave—until now. From the moment he sees her, he knows Eva is his for the taking. Torn between lust and duty, Taio knows nothing will stop him from protecting his little warrior.


Eva pressed her face against the rectangular window in the training room, watching the lights of unknown origin whiz by. She stood in one of the training rooms Ship had sequestered for her. After lunch, she felt more than a little stir-crazy. She needed to work off some of the tension that coiled around her muscles. It took all her strength not to get up and leave the dining hall while Taio’s gaze bored through her back. Did he really have to keep sending those smoldering looks her way?

His lavender eyes locked on her whenever she entered a room. The intensity of his gaze made her body respond in a way that she didn’t want it to. No one would ever consider her to be a coward. But there was something about the way he looked at her that had her frightened.

And that tattoo on his face. Sometimes it intrigued her and other times it made her scared. Who would allow such an intricate drawing to be completed? The pain alone would have been enough to deter any sane person from getting it, alien or not.

His body was a whole different story. It was downright criminal to have a body like his. The man had a body that would make a nun want to sin. He was tall, unbelievably so, but he was all rippling muscle.

This vessel was full of men and the only one who would give her a second glance was Taio. The thought should have given her some type of comfort. Instead of beating off twenty men, there was only one she would have to worry about. There was no mistaking his intentions. Every time he looked her way, it was as if he were willing her clothes to fall from her body. Her only counterattack so far was to stay away from him.

But she did have to agree with Ship, being under the care of Taio was for the best right now. She was fed, the dining hall was open around the clock, which was a plus. Oftentimes she found herself standing in front of the computer, requesting the buro flank with nitlick soup after everyone else was fast asleep. These were the closest thing to Earth food she could find. They had the same taste as chicken and tomato soup.

She was finally clean. Although she would have loved to feel the caress of running water on her skin again, the ionized shower hit the spot. She had clothes, which, although they were tight, were at least clean. And most of all, she didn’t feel her safety was in any type of jeopardy, not at the moment.

She wanted to find Ally, but she had to face the hard facts.

She was far away from home.

In an alien world.

No money whatsoever.

Nowhere to go.

And alone.

Finally, pulling herself away from the window, she pulled a training bag from the corner to start her workout. Hand-to-hand combat always made her feel primal, the main reason she loved it so much.

Within minutes, her training suit clung to her body, the lightweight material not constricting her movements at all. Perspiration covered her from head to toe, her once tied-back hair hanging wet and loose around her. Her muscles thrived under the workout, coming alive once again.

Heavy breathing behind her caught her off guard. She flipped away, landing in a fighting stance facing the intruder.

Taio stood in the doorway, watching. He gave a curt nod her way, the acknowledgement doing nothing to make her feel relaxed.

“You have good skills, Eva.” He hooked his thumbs in the waist of his pants and leaned on the doorway.

Her name never sounded better.

“Thank you.” She relaxed and straightened, her eyes still watching him. This was his first time speaking to her since their ill-fated first encounter.

She didn’t dare move closer, especially since she still didn’t know his intentions. She didn’t move away either, fearing he would view that as a sign of weakness. So she stood her ground, her body betraying her in the worst way. Her heart sped up a little and her breathing became more labored. Now she found her nipples hardening as her name rolled off his tongue.

I know trouble when I see it.

Eva willed her body to fight against whatever “mojo” he was throwing at her.

Taio walked into the room and took a sword off a rack on the wall. He began flexing it, testing its weight. The gesture caused his arm and chest muscles to ripple with each movement.


“Who taught you fighting moves?” he asked.

“My sensei, he lived back home.”

“Earth,” he said as a statement, rather than a question.

“Yes, Earth. Ann Arbor, Michigan, more specifically.”

She eyed the weapons on the wall. She was trained to use various fighting weapons—sais, kamas, knives, nunchakus, bo staffs and swords. She could show him a thing a two.

She walked over to the rack and took another sword off the wall.


It weighed a ton! No wonder he smirked when she picked it up. Even though she strained to hold it in both hands, she made sure not to let him know. She would give anything to smack that look right off his face. Instead, she concentrated hard on not dropping the sword. She wouldn’t give him the satisfaction. She dared not try to maneuver it as he had.

“A male taught you?” He sounded surprised.

“Yes. Thirteen Earth years of training.” Taio laughed and shook his head in disbelief. “It’s not unusual on my planet,” she said. “A male can teach a female how to fight or even a female can teach a male.”

He laughed harder and shook his head. “There could never be such a thing on my world.”

She turned away. “I earned a black belt, first Dan in Kyokushin Karate. On Earth I’m considered to be a great fighter.”

“Your people did not fare well in the war against the Loconuist. The fighting techniques of your species mean nothing to me.”


If the sword in her hands wasn’t so heavy, she would have swung it at him.


“We didn’t know how to fight them. We’d never encountered aliens before.”

“Then it is good that I will take care of you from now on.”

Her head snapped around. “I don’t need you to take care of me.”

“You were captured by the Loconuist and the Tresdonians almost killed you.”

She shrugged. “But they didn’t.”

He smirked. “Because I saved you.”

“Thanks, but I can take care of myself.”

“It doesn’t matter. You are my responsibility now. You are my slave.”

Her eyes, squinting and cold, fixed on his. “Ship told me those assholes on that planet gave me to you. I think you got cheated. I’m not a slave. Not yours or anyone else’s.”

“If this arrangement does not suit you, I could turn the vessel around and give you back to the Tresdonians.” He turned from her and put the heavy sword back on the wall rack.

Her heart began pounding in her chest. He wouldn’t… “No. I’m not going back there.” She held her sword tightly in her grasp.

“Then you are my slave.” He stalked slowly toward her. His eyes locked on hers.

“No.” She backed away from him.

This cannot happen.

“You are mine.” He took another step toward her. “You will need to get used to the idea.”


He stopped his advancement. They stood facing each other. Her breathing came out in deep and heavy breaths. Her heart thumped in her chest.

Abruptly, he turned and walked from the room. She blinked at the empty doorway. The cold surface of the wall was against her back. She held the sword close to her chest, shielding her body. She stayed there until her arms shook from the sword’s weight.

She was no one’s slave.


Enjoy! Griffin

About the author:

A. M. Griffin is a wife who rarely cooks, mother of three, dog owner (and sometimes dog owned), a daughter, sister, aunt and friend. She’s a hard worker whose two favorite outlets are reading and writing. She enjoys reading everything from mystery novels to historical romances and of course fantasy romance. She is a believer in the unbelievable, open to all possibilities from mermaids in our oceans and seas, angels in the skies and intelligent life forms in distant galaxies. She has multi-publications in other genres under a different pen name.

Now available from Elora’s Cave -

You can find out what else I’m working on by visiting:

Follow me on Twitter!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Ramblings: Crit Partners

My Journey


I left off with me trying to find critique (crit) partners.

So, while I patiently waited for my next set of edits to come back, I inquired to my fellow EC authors about how to go about finding crit partners.

I received a couple of leads which I happily pursued. Two leads that were the most promising were:

The MudPuddle from RWA-FFP

Both were wonderful starting grounds. On Ladies Who Critique, which was a free service, I found all members under my genre and friended them. Heck I didn’t know what else to do.

In order to join The Mudpuddle group you have to first become a member of RWA (charge), then you have to join FFP (charge) and from there you can request to join The MudPuddle crit group (free).

So first off, I put a few chapters up on The MudPuddle and yes, you guessed it, it was torn to shreds. I have to mention here that a lot of the comments were those that I needed to hear. Some of the comments mentioned mistakes and questions that my editor had already pointed out but I was too stubborn to change. So, although my feelings were terribly hurt from that experience, I can honestly say that because of it I have a better book.

One comment told me to delete the first chapter and start the book at the second chapter. This was something that I was totally against. The first chapter had vital information in it that I wanted the reader to know, such as the extent of Eva and Allysan’s relationship. But as I thought about it more I decided to take his advice and do away with it. In the end you will see that Eva and Allysan’s relationship is weaved throughout the story and you are actually spared from the first chapter info dump. You can all thank Ed for that.

After working with The MudPuddle for a couple of months, my massive friending spree over at Ladies Who Critique finally paid off. Two lovely gals contacted me, Stephy and Terri. We communicated back and forth for about a week deciding on how we should pursue with crit’s, what format to use and what would be fair to all parties.

Now this small crit group of unpublished aspiring authors is where I really learned the most. I went in it with an open mind, as you should when joining a crit group. I figured that I had to view these ladies as potential customers. I didn’t get offended or annoyed if either came back with “Sa’Mya seems addled brained. Is that what you are going for?” (BTW Sa’Mya is the main character of my second book) or “I don’t understand what you mean.” Or “This doesn’t make sense.?” To me those were valid comments and questions. If a reader is asking the question that means I’ve missed the mark somewhere. I didn’t fire back an email that said, “What, yes it does! I explained it in chapter 2!” Why? Because if I had explained it thoroughly in chapter 2, then the question would not have been asked. So, instead I would go back to chapter 2 and expand where needed.

In return, I offered the same services to them. I wouldn’t read their work, trying to nitpick through every word or sentence, trying to find mistakes or errors. I would simply read as a reader would. If a sentence or two needed help then I would offer a solution. If a scene could use a little more “umph”, I would offer advice.

I’m happy to report that all three of us have WIP’s that we are shopping around and hopefully we’ll all get picked up!

I think the ramblings of this week were focused more on finding a good crit partner and your role to becoming a good crit partner.

As always (from the sayings of a good crit partner), “take what you can use and discard the rest!”

Until next time!


Dangerously Mine will be available December 14th from Ellora’s Cave!

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Next Big Thing

Thanks so much to Stormie Kent for tagging me in this game, The Next Big Thing. Writing can be a solitary business, and I’ve found this game useful because I can follow each author’s tags, and trace the authors who have tagged them. It also gave me an opportunity to extend the opportunity to other authors.

The Next Big Thing is a game where authors spend a bit talking about their books, works-in progress, likes and dislikes.

Here is the link for Stormie Kent. Don’t forget to check it out. She’s an awesome writer and great talent.

So, let’s get to it!

The Next Big Thing


What is the working title of your book?
Dangerously Mine.

Where did the idea come from for the book?
I had this idea of an alien invasion kicking around in my head for about a year. Instead of going away it kept getting stronger and stronger. So much so, that I had begun to envision my heroin and hero and started seeing them in scenarios.
Since neither seemed like they were going away anytime soon (and to calm the voices in my head) I began to put my thoughts down on paper. It didn’t take long for me to have a folder full of scenes. They hardest part was putting the scenes together to make it a readable book.

What genre does your book fall under?
Science-fiction romance erotica. I’m not sure if that’s a true category but that’s the one I like for this book.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I would actually be open to having a fresh face play my hero and heroin. But if I had to have one known actor, I would have to steal Jason Momoa away from Stormie to play Taio.

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
I suck at writing these. But here I go…

After a hostile alien invasion Eva is taken along with billions of other humans and sold into slavery.

See it literally can't be done. If I’m only allowed 1 sentence, then I wouldn’t be able to tell you how Taio Xochis happens upon her fighting in a slave market and thinks he’s saving a child. I also couldn’t tell you that Eva kicks major butt in this book. And I also wouldn’t be able tell you that they fall in love. But I think you would’ve guessed the last part since all of EC’s books have happily ever after endings.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
This book is contracted with Ellora’s Cave.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
The first draft didn’t take that long at all. I think it was done in about 1 to 1 ½ months. Editing took a lot longer.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I’m not sure.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I would have to say my mother. She has hundreds of books and poetry stashed away in folders on her computer. From a very young age I remember her sitting at her desk on her typewriter. I think writing is just engrained in me.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
There’s sex in this book. Enough said. Just kidding. Along with the sex there’s a love story, as well as a story of survival and being strong.

Now for those I tagged. Be sure to check out their The Next Big Thing Blog the week of November 12, 2012.

Amy Ruttan

Message for the tagged authors and interested others:

Rules of the Next Big Thing
***Use this format for your post
***Answer the ten questions about your current WIP (work in progress)
***Tag five other writers/bloggers and add their links so we can hop over and meet them.

Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:
What is your working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Include the link of who tagged you and this explanation for the people you have tagged.

Be sure to line up your five people in advance.