Welcome to a special Pets in Space edition of Dead Author Live! I haven’t done a Dead Author Live for several months because of our noisy renovation, but I’m excited today to talk about Pets in Space 4!
If you’ve hung around me for very long, then you know that I am one of the co-founders of the Pets in Space anthologies, along with author Veronica Scott.
When Veronica Scott and I conceived the idea for our Pets in Space anthologies, one of the first things we talked about was supporting a charity that benfited our military and first responders—those who run toward danger when others are running away. And we hoped for some kind of pet tie-in.
It was total serendipity when we found Hero Dogs. This will be our fourth year as proud supporters of Hero-Dogs.org. Pets in Space ® authors have donated over $7,100 in the past three years to help place specially trained dogs with veterans and first responders.
Why veterans and first responders?
My father was a veteran of both WWII and Korea. He was 18 years old when he was drafted into the Army and 21 when his national guard unit was sent to Korea.
At eighteen I was just starting college, not setting off to get shot at.
I sometimes forget how young they all were. How homesick, how seasick. How scared. When my dad left for Korea, he’d been married three months. His 18 month deployment meant he missed the birth of his first child. He didn’t know if he’d make it home. He didn’t know he’d live to find himself called one of the Greatest Generation. He just did his duty, then and throughout his life. He was my first hero.
I am so grateful to all the men and women of our military and to our first responders.
I am so grateful to Hero Dogs and other organizations that stand ready to help veterans and first responders recover from wounds received during their service. It is our privilege and honor to support Hero Dogs again this year. As in the past, 10% of all preorders and the first month’s royalties of Pets in Space 4 will once again be donated to Hero-Dogs.org.
We hoping to raise more this year, but we need your help to do it. Please join us in supporting this very worthy cause by buying a copy of Pets in Space 4 and in sharing information about Pets in Space 4 with friends and family, in your real life and on social media. I promise you that you won’t regret it. You and, everyone who buys a copy will get to read 13 amazing stories of romance, danger, and of course, the heroes and heroines’ loyal and brave pets. It’s almost 1500 pages of science fiction romance, adventure with pets.
And yes I am an organizer, but I’m also one of the author’s. My story in the anthology is called Cyborg’s Revenge and it is a related story in my Project Enterprise series. What’s it about you ask?
They say you can’t go home again, but what if it is the only way to truly be free?
Rap and Ale have a mission to neutralize the man who enslaved them and their crew. It’s dangerous, with a high probability they will fail, but it is the only way to be truly and completely free of their past—and free to find a future with each other.
Here’s a teaser from the story:
That was the problem with plans. No matter how carefully Rap planned, stuff happened. As a robot he’d been able to react swiftly to rapidly changing dynamics. This body was much slower, but he couldn’t have executed this plan in his previous unit. And the only reason this human body had a chance was because of its cyborg enhancements.
You are welcome.
The AI, Nelson had come with the enhancements. Or the enhancements came with the AI. There was no question Nelson was key to making them work properly. But having a voice inside his head was an acquired taste—one Rap was still acquiring.
Your plan is imperfect.
Nelson was correct—
I am always correct.
Rap didn’t dispute this. It felt too much like arguing with himself, even though he knew Nelson was a separate entity operating inside Rap’s head.
“It is all we have,” Rap pointed out, startled by the sound of his voice in the otherwise empty room. If not stopped, the Q’uy, and V’ruwak in particular, would move against them again, harder than the last time, and they’d barely survived that.
Can Rap and Ale defeat their enemy and find their own happy-ever-after? Only Rap’s chatty pet Snake knows for sure.
I hope you’ll join us this year for 13 amazing adventures in space! Pets in Space 4 will land on eReaders all over the galaxy on Oct 8, 2019! Okay, maybe not the whole galaxy, but you never know, right?
And I’d like to personally thank you for your support of the Pets in Space anthologies. When Veronica and I talked about the first one, we had no idea there would be four. And there wouldn’t be without you, our readers. Thank you so much for taking this adventure with us. You are the best!
One of the pleasures of doing an anthology is getting to meet new authors, even if only online. I meet Cassandra Chandler through the Pets in Space® 4 anthology and she immediately impressed me with her enthusiasm that just beams out of her. I asked Cassandra to share with me a little about her pet in Pets in Space® 4 so over to Cassandra….
One of the best aspects of being a writer is when the story, the characters, or the world surprise you. The Department of Homeworld Security has been no exception. I think the most delightful surprise so far has been the cats.
It started in Export Duty, when I discovered that Ari has been watching Earth cat videos and desperately wants one as a pet. I had no intention to make that part of his character, but it came up so naturally in his conversation with Rin that I knew I had to keep it. Now, I can’t envision Ari without a cat in his arms. It’s a different cat every time, and I’m hoping to make this a running gag in the series going forward. Lucky for Ari (and me), the newest human members of the Department of Homeworld Security have a pretty large clowder of rescue cats for him to hang out with.
The Vegan xenobiologist, Cyan, is also smitten with cats, but she can go one step farther than Ari—she can talk to them. That was another surprise I discovered while writing the series, and one that I’ve been exploring quite a bit in my mind. Beyond the desire for food, shelter, affection, and entertainment, what would a cat want? And what would a technologically advanced lizard person and a cat even have to talk about?
Turns out, quite a bit.
Cyan talking to the cats started out as a fun quirk, but has now fed into one of the pivotal aspects of world building for this series. It’s informed not just the direction the story is heading, but also where it’s coming from. I’ll be unveiling this as the series goes on, but there is a particular family of cats that will be figuring prominently in this all—starting with Marq’s pet, Meredith.
I’ve hinted in the series that something bad happened on Vega that drove the Vegans from their homeworld, but not what. After listening to Cyan talk to Freddie (the marmalade tabby from Export Duty) in my head, and now Meredith, from my Pets in Space® piece… wow, I’ve learned a lot about this universe. And I’ve never been more excited to see where the stories are about to go and how Meredith’s very special kittens figure into the shenanigans (because there will be shenanigans). I hope you’ll come along for the ride!
Grab your copy of Pets in Space® 4 today! For a limited time, Pets in Space® 4 brings together today’s leading Science Fiction Romance authors to help Hero-Dogs.org, a non-profit charity that helps our service veterans and first responders. https://petsinspaceantho.com
Cassandra Chandler uses her vivid imagination to make the world more interesting, spawning the ideas she turns into her whimsical Science Fiction romcoms and darkly evocative Paranormal and Urban Fantasy Romances.
She grabbed her phone from her bedside table and ran to the door, stepping up on her tiptoes so she could see through the eyehole. The motion sensor light had tripped, and through the fish-eye lens, he looked…
Pretty cute, actually.
He had greenish-blue eyes, sandy brown hair—shorter on the sides than on the top—and a strong jaw and nose. Nice lips. Really nice lips. His arms were braced on either side of the doorframe and his shoulders were broad enough that he looked totally capable of knocking down her door.
“Wow, he is buff,” Caitlin whispered.
He lifted his fist and hammered on the door again, hard enough to make the pictures on the walls shake. She yelped and jerked back.
“I’m here,” she yelled. “You can stop knocking.”
His tone hadn’t lost any of its urgency when he said, “I need your help.”
“I’m not a doctor.”
He went quiet.
She was about to look through the eyehole again when he said, “Brigid told me you were.”
“Brigid,” Caitlin murmured. “Of course.”
Brigid, the quieter twin who somehow lived the more interesting life. Brigid, surrounded by celebrities that hired her to cook for them. Brigid, the valedictorian, who could do no wrong in their parents’ eyes.
“I’m a veterinarian,” Caitlin said.
“An animal doctor.” Caitlin raised her voice so he could hear her clearly.
“That’s what I need. Please, my cat needs help.”
Throwback Thursday at 7:30 Eastern Time! Live from North Carolina. I had a special guest, Ginger Collins, from the Allegheny Writers with me. Thanks for coming in and joining Ginger B. Collins and I tonight!
I had seen military honors on television shows, but had never experienced it in real life until my dad, a veteran of WWII and Korea, passed away last year.
While military honors are mandated by law, I know the men who served with my dad (and my dad while he still lived) consider it a privilege to be in the honor guard for a comrades in arms.
I don’t think any television show or movie can capture the poignancy of the real deal. The haunting effect of the bugler and then the echo as another distant bugler echoes “Taps.”
I could feel my dad saying farewell for now to his buddies. And we were so grateful to the younger soldiers who also gave up time on a Saturday morning to honor my dad. I could feel their deep respect for what they were doing and for the man they were doing it for.
I wanted to share this clip because it is the essence of why we wanted a charity that helps veterans for Pets in Space. It was our privilege to work with Hero Dogs last year, and it is an even greater privilege to be able to work with them again this year with Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2.
We are so grateful for our veterans, for all the heroes who stand in harm’s way to protect us, to protect our freedom.
They called my Dad’s generation the “greatest,” and there is no question they deserve the designation. Boys became men when they were thrown into battle against ruthless enemies. Thankfully there are still heroes, still “greatest” men and women willing to face ruthless enemies in our time.
And thank goodness for organizations like Hero Dogs who are there to help them when they come home suffering from the injuries of war.
Hero Dogs raises and trains service dogs and places them free of charge with US Veterans to improve quality of life and restore independence. 10% of all preorders and the first month’s profits go to Hero-Dogs.org.
Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2 will release world-wide Oct 10, 2017.
The pets are back! Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2, featuring twelve of today’s leading Science Fiction Romance authors, brings you a dozen original stories written just for you! Join in the fun, from the Dragon Lords of Valdier to a trip aboard award-winning author, Veronica Scott’s Nebula Zephyr to journeying back to Luda where Grim is King, for stories that will take you out of this world! Join New York Times, USA TODAY, and Award-winning authors S.E. Smith, M.K. Eidem, Susan Grant, Michelle Howard, Cara Bristol, Veronica Scott, Pauline Baird Jones, Laurie A. Green, Sabine Priestley, Jessica E. Subject, Carol Van Natta, and Alexis Glynn Latner as they share stories and help out Hero-Dogs.org, a charity that supports our veterans!
Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2 will release world-wide Oct 10, 2017.
Pauline Baird Jones never liked reality, so she writes books. She likes to wander among the genres, rampaging like Godzilla, because she does love peril mixed in her romance.
By Cara Bristol
One question authors are asked is how they come up with their characters names. In my science fiction romance, many of the names are symbolic representations of the characters themselves. Without “inside information,” readers probably won’t realize the significance of the names, but it helps me to define the characters.
In Rescued by the Cyborg, my story in Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2, heroine Solia is a Faria. Faria are fairy-like aliens who radiate light. You could say they have an “inner glow.” In the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance series, I first mention Faria in book 2, Mated with the Cyborg, then created a Faria heroine in book 3, Captured by the Cyborg. Her name was Illumina for illumination meaning light. When I decided to create another Faria heroine for Rescued by the Cyborg, I needed another “light” name. Latin roots offer wonderful alien sounding names. I asked myself what kinds of things produce light. The sun radiates light! Sun in Latin is solis. I needed it to be feminine sounding, so my character became Solia.
Most of my cyborg names in the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance series are symbolic as well. Cyborgs are machine/computer-augmented humans. To emphasize their humanity and show they’re not robots, I gave them all “man” names. The hero in Rescued by the Cyborg is Guy Roarke (Other cyborgs in the series: Mann, Homme, Andros, Sonny, Fellows). The only cyborg who doesn’t have a man name is Cyber Operations Director Carter Aymes because when the series started, he wasn’t a cyborg, and I’m such a pantser, I didn’t know he was going to become one.
Mittzi, the kitten in Rescued, has four white mittens (paws).
The villains of Rescued by the Cyborg are called Ka-Tȇ (pronounced Kah TAY) and live on the planet Katnia. Because they resemble hairless panthers, they are named after cats—but as I point out in the story, they are not genetically related to felines.
Rescued by the Cyborg
A Novella in the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance Series
A cyborg’s haunted past and a Faria’s clouded future entwine…
Hostage and sole survivor Solia waits for death at the hands of vicious predatory aliens when Cy-Ops agent Guy Roarke disobeys orders and charges in. A former medic, he initiates emergency medical procedures before rushing her to Cybermed.
Guy is taken with Solia, but the guilt of a past mistake won’t allow him to plan for a future with the delicate, brave beauty. Life is so uncertain, he can’t even keep Mittzi, the kitten his niece gave him. What he can do is see to it Solia gets the help she needs for a full recovery. But when best intentions place her in greater danger, it’s up to a little kitten to make everything all right again.
Rescued by the Cyborg Excerpt
In this scene, the hero discovers the villains have captured a Faria.
“Scan the surface for life-forms alien to Katnia,” Guy ordered. “Report any anomalies.”
“Scanning,” said the computer.
For several minutes the only sound in the cockpit was Mittzi purring, and then the computer spoke. “The exospheric molecular analysis has been completed.”
“Plasma diffusion with a molecular array consistent with a class B attack cruiser has been detected.”
Guy accessed his databanks in the microprocessor embedded between the hemispheres of his brain and pulled up a list of individuals and organizations known to run class B attack cruisers. It was a short list.
“Identical plasmic trace elements were detected in the troposphere and at ground level,” the ship’s AI said.
“You’re saying a craft landed on the planet’s surface?”
“The probability is 99.87 percent.”
“How long ago?”
“Adjusting for weather and atmospheric conditions, the range would be between two and three weeks. The surface scan for alien life has been completed.”
“What did you find?” He held his breath. Report nothing. Please, report nothing.
“One alien life-form has been identified.”
He clenched a fist. “What?”
“A Farian female.”
Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2
The pets are back! Embrace the Romance: Pets in Space 2, featuring twelve of today’s leading Science Fiction Romance authors brings you a dozen original stories written just for you! Join in the fun, from the Dragon Lords of Valdier to a trip aboard award-winning author, Veronica Scott’s Nebula Zephyr to journeying back to Luda where Grim is King, for stories that will take you out of this world! Join New York Times, USA TODAY, and Award-winning authors S.E. Smith, M.K. Eidem, Susan Grant, Michelle Howard, Cara Bristol, Veronica Scott, Pauline Baird Jones, Laurie A. Green, Sabine Priestley, Jessica E. Subject, Carol Van Natta, and Alexis Glynn Latner as they share stories and help out Hero-Dogs.org, a charity that supports our veterans!
10% of the first month’s profits go to Hero-Dogs.org. Hero Dogs raises and trains service dogs and places them free of charge with US Veterans to improve quality of life and restore independence. http://www.petsinspaceantho.com
Cara Bristol Bio
USA Today bestselling author Cara Bristol writes steamy science fiction romance with an emphasis on the characters and their romance, with a little humor, heat, and danger added for fun. She is the author of three science fiction romance series: sexy cyborg Cy-Ops Scifi Romance series, the dark erotic Breeder series, and the new humorous Alien Mate series. She likes to say that she writes science fiction for readers who don’t like sci-fi. Cara lives in Missouri with her alpha hero, her husband, and Hannah, her cat, aka her writing supervisor.
Social media links:
Web site: http://www.carabristol.com
Twitter: @CaraBristol, https://twitter.com/CaraBristol