Her history, her whereabouts, her name: She knows nothing. Nothing but her current reality: a constant stream of horrific, surrealistic scenarios in which she fights not only monsters and unseen attackers but also her own pain and despair.
Reed Jayvyn is an ex-Army vet, penniless and living in his truck. After saving a young man from attackers, he finds himself embroiled in a superhuman drama between the Broschi and the Clan, two groups engaged in a centuries-long war. Worse, he finds he is one of them—a Broschi, a psychic vampire that feeds off the pain of humans. But Reed’s greatest surprise comes each night, when he finds himself dreaming of a fierce, nameless woman.
She is dreaming. So says the handsome man who uses his heretofore latent psychic ability to flicker in and out of her dreamscape. With Reed’s help, she slowly learns more about who she is, why she is here, what trauma in her past keeps her locked inside her mind. Meanwhile, Reed explores his own heritage, discovering enemies and allies in unexpected places.
But most important to Reed is freeing this woman caught in an endless loop of nightmares, someone he considers in every way to be the woman of his dreams.
A woman trapped in an endless cycle of nightmares. A handsome hero committed to rescuing her. It’s just like Sleeping Beauty – except the dreaming damsel is the sword wielder and the hero is a psychic vampire feeding off her pain.
“I know you’re not bad,” she reassured him, smiling.
“You don’t know anything of the sort,” he said.
“Don’t you dare invade my dream and then question my judgment!” She meant to snap it but couldn’t manage anything beyond a biting edge to her tone. “We’ve been in some, um, challenging environments, and I think I know you pretty well.”
“Says the woman who only recently started thinking of me as real,” he said.
Katana felt the cold of the rock under her behind wind upward into her head. “Recently for you,” she said quietly, all teasing gone. “You have no idea how long it feels in here. I’ve spun from dream to dream, always fighting, always endangered, always waiting for the pain and the terror. I haven’t had a lot of time to think, but I’ve done what I can when I have a moment or two. I feel I’ve known you for months and get to see you every few weeks, even though I know it’s once per day for you.”
Reed exhaled once, slowly. Then, gently, he placed his hand against her cheek and helped guide her face upward.
Knowing what to expect, Katana closed her eyes and stretched upward. Reed wrapped both arms around her, and she flowed against him.
After a moment, Reed pulled away very slightly and kissed her nose. “You feel warm and . . . good,” he murmured against her lips. She felt his moist breath against her face and inhaled the mintiness of his toothpaste.
“You feel real,” she whispered.
Hi and thanks for stopping by!
From one book nerd to two others, thanks so much for having me.
Okay, let’s get the tough questions out of the way first.
Where did the idea for this series come from?
Before birthing my characters, I sat down one day to craft my universe. Wouldn’t it be kind of cool, I thought, if a universe flipped the usual gender arrangement? What if the women were the warriors and the men the magicians? What would that look like? How would a warrior culture organize itself? As more and more questions popped up, I realized I had the beginnings of my universe.
What are your thoughts on good/bad reviews?
Good reviews: yay! Bad reviews: boo! Okay, seriously, while I’d like to think everyone who reads my books is going to quit their jobs and dedicate their lives to staffing my fan club, I know my writing style, subject matter, or plot devices won’t please every reader.
All that said, I wish I was more sanguine about negative reviews. Heck, even in my day job as a college instructor, I have a difficult time reading student evaluations. Maybe as I grow older, wiser, and more experienced, I’ll develop more of an emotional callus.
If someone were to write a biography about your life, whom would you want to write it and what would the title be?
Too Big to Fail: The Life and Times of Elle Hill by Molly Ivins (who is unfortunately now deceased).
How much research do you do to prep for a novel?
Not a whole lot. I mostly spend a bit of time thinking through the plot. Once I get a general idea, I jot down four or so pages of notes and just dive in. I like to give the story a lot of room to grow.
What song best describes your writing ethic?
“Gonna Make You Sweat,” although of course I’d have to change the chorus to “Everybody write now!”
What was the hardest thing about writing Hunted Dreams?
Finding time. As an instructor, I work more than forty hours per week. Tucking writing in among prepping slides and grading projects can be pretty challenging.
Anything you want to share with your readers?
Thank you so much for reading this book. I hope its weird, sometimes dark, sometimes silly tones snag you. I hope my characters speak to you.
What are your current faves?
Television Show: I don’t own a TV and haven’t watched one in many years. That said, I have watched Buffy, the Vampire Slayer on DVD countless times, and I grab Dr. Who episodes whenever I can.
Ice Cream: Vanilla. Boring, I know.
Movie: It’s probably still Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. The only disappointing part is when the beast turns into a prince at the end.
Song: Probably something disco or techno with an awesome beat and zero intelligent lyrics. “Funkytown” by Lipps, Inc.? “Gonna Make You Sweat” by C & C Music Factory? “The Power” by Snap!?
Book: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott.
Quote: “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye.” ~Miss Piggy
Position (reading position that is): Kicking back in my recliner, tootsies up, book resting on a pillow on my tummy, kitties tucked in around me.
Thanks again for the questions! Nerds of the world, unite!
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Elle began writing novel-length romances in junior high. She continued scribbling wild tales on her wide-ruled notepads till those pesky college and career things got in the way. Finally, after earning her Ph.D. in Sociology, Elle gave herself permission to get a life. Now, she spends just about all her waking hours doing one or more of the following: teaching, writing, volunteering, and tending to the whims of her kitty masters.