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Exclusive Excerpt from “The Crown”

Do you love dark and twisted fairy tale retellings? Do you love the Twelve Dancing Princesses? Then, get ready for The Crown!

Enjoy this exclusive excerpt while we wait for its release on January 22!

She commanded them all. Power and grace exuded from her every step and twirl. A broad shouldered man bowed and slid his hand behind her slim waist. Her lips parted into a smile. Her cheeks flushed a deeper shade.

I continued along the edge, careful as I maneuvered between the collection of men that stood like trees. I couldn’t help my eyes falling to Octavia. She fell into the arms of an eager partner, only to spin away into the embrace of another.

It was then I noticed a pearl fall from her shoe. It rolled across the floor, passed the men’s pointed leather boots and beside the princesses’ pointed silk heels. It came to a rest right before me. Kneeling down I picked up the smooth orb and placed it deep within my pockets.

A pink ribbon twirled by next followed by a split heel.

The dance continued.

The clock chimed one. The clock chimed two.

Shreds of silk trailed behind the princesses’ spinning feet. Lace was torn and toes peeked through growing holes. Still they danced. The music grew feverish. It infected my bones and my entire body vibrated with the dark melody. It wanted me to join.

It needed me…

I shook it away, focusing on the glittering hail falling from their shoes. Diamonds, gold, and emeralds bounced off the marble floor and rolled beneath cracking soles. Buckles snapped. Seams popped. Strips of fabric disintegrated before my eyes.

Their cheeks were red and lips plump, almost as if they were drunk. They tugged the jackets of their princes, forcing them closer against their heaving bosoms. The men leaned their faces against their cheeks, their arms and hands skating down every arc and sinew. Some kissed passionately.

I couldn’t stop a rush of jealousy as the man with the scar ran his fingers up Octavia’s neck and into her hair. She laughed musically.

BONG! BONG! BONG!

I covered my ears. Every clock chimed three as if summoning the horsemen of the apocalypse.

The music ceased. The dance stopped. The princesses were escorted back towards the boats, leaving the remnants of their shoes behind.

My heart raced. I ran across the emptying ball room, careful not to trip on an errant ruby or broken buckle. My only hope to avoid discovery was to board the first boat with Octavia.

I squeezed beside the princes and princesses as they filed out of the doors, but in my haste I came too close to Henrietta’s skirts. My shoe tugged on the silk and a distinct rip tore over their chatter.

“Look what you did, Bertram!” Henrietta scolded her prince.

“A thousand apologies, your grace,” he said. “But my foot was nowhere near your gown.”

“It didn’t tear by itself,” she snapped.

She pointed at the frayed fabric. He just bowed his head in surrender like a dog to its master.

“I told you, there is something odd about this place tonight,” Aloysia piped. “I’ve felt watched all evening.”

I froze.

“You’ve been reading far too many novels,” Octavia said. “We can’t waste time worrying about phantoms.”

As they stood in debate, I took the opportunity to slide past them. Their feet thundered behind me as we traveled back through the twisting bushes and to the dock. Octavia stepped in the first boat, and I slunk in quickly after.

I dared not breath the whole time, and my mind kept swirling with splitting shoes and dark melodies.

Once we hit shore, I jumped out at the first available moment and ran. I sprinted back up the bank and through the diamond forest. Their voices were never far behind, causing me to quicken my pace even more.

I ducked beneath a low hanging golden branch. Swiped past the silver leaves, the faintest rustle echoing out in my wake.

Laughter bubbled behind me. I forced myself to move even faster.

I raced up the stairs, skipping two at a time. My lungs started to burn and my heart pounded into my throat. The breath of youth I experienced withered away. The pain returned. My ankle ground into the surrounding tendons. Bones cracked and muscle coiled.

Sweat ran down my temples. My ankle could no longer support my weight. I gripped the stone walls, plunging into the cracks and crevices to help pull myself along. Ten steps I counted, each agony. My nails split as I dug them deeper into the mortar.

Throbbing and pounding, my ankle snapped beneath my weight. I collapsed onto the stairs.

Voices. Laughter. They were right up behind me now.

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SPIN Release

A necklace, a ring, a child…There is always a price one is willing to pay. My debut novel, SPIN, is available now on Amazon!

 

Are you ready to strike a deal?

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A necklace, a ring, a child…There is always a price one is willing to pay.

Laila sees her impending death in the mountains of straw waiting to be spun into gold. Faced with the impossible, she makes the impossible decision to survive, no matter what the cost.

A shadowy stranger sees an opportunity for vengeance. Born to a nightmarish destiny that crushed and embittered his faith in humanity, he devotes himself to dealing in dark desires and desperate souls, and Laila’s is ripe for the trade.

When the stranger asks his price, Laila is bound by blood and magic to pay. His own heart was never supposed to be part of the deal, but when honor drives Laila to break their bargain, he ends up tangled in his own web of deceit and destruction in a desperate attempt to save her life. In the black of night, there are no fairytales, only choices.

One choice makes a queen. One choice consumes a soul. It’s a roll of the dice in a game where love is everyone’s undoing.

Spin, Genevieve Raas’ debut fantasy novel, is a twisted, sexy retelling of one of Grimm’s classic tales and the first book in the Spindlewind series.

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A Little Bit of Chaos

I finally accepted that the writing process is never the same. One project might come to me in a series of unconnected scenes. Other times, it presents itself as one whole, and my outline will resemble a synopsis instead of a fractured puzzle.

Fact is, I never know how the story is going to come together and I know I can’t decide how it will happen.
I hate it. It is chaos, and my order-loving little heart is smashed. But, the writing gods don’t care.

Either way I get the idea, once I have it wrangled into a workable form of some sort, I start to type. I used to try and go for that hallowed one, perfect draft (I love order, I told you). However, three and four rewrites of an entire novel quickly beat that method out of me. Now, I do what I swore I never would: write one, chaos filled first draft. And I write it as quickly as I can.

I look at it as a sketch: Mostly dialogue and points describing how I want the characters to react. As I go along through the drafts, I fill in the emotion and tighten the plot. In the end, I will have about three to four drafts before it is ready to be published.

I won’t lie, there are days I think, “what am I doing to myself?” but ever since I got bit by the writing bug as a child, I knew this is ultimately what I wanted to do. I was first inspired by fairytales, then moved on to the worlds created by C. S. Lewis. I wanted to find my way into magical wardrobes and befriend umbrella carrying fauns (especially if the faun is James McAvoy).

I have since been inspired by others. Jane Austen (I am team Darcy, fyi) and from there moved into the darker fantasy of Anne Rice and Neil Gaiman. These authors will always be close to my heart. They showed me it was ok to see the world differently and question the unquestionable.

Thanks to them, my bookshelf is an interesting hodgepodge of genres. Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles sit next to the collected autobiography of Casanova. The Phantom of the Opera and Perfume are snuggled against my beloved Harry Potter. Don’t even get me started on non-fiction…I have an unhealthy collection of all things Mozart.

When I see my bookshelf, I see an extension of myself. I also see an unending stream of inspiration and motivation. When I struggle to get through the chaos of writing a book, or angered when my writing plan gets blown to bits, I look up at my books on the shelves. Small books are wedged between large, dark fantasy next to non-fiction, and Garfield comics shoved against The Master and Margarita. It is chaotic. Yet, it does not collapse and I realize that from chaos can arise beauty. I know all will be ok.

 

This blog also posted on Captive Quill Press

 

 

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Let the Frenzy Begin!

I knew 2016 would be a busy year, but I didn’t realize how busy until I stopped and took a look at all I have planned.

The first novel in my series is currently in its final stage of editing, while the second has just been corralled into an eleven page outline.

Then, there is still that NaNoWriMo novel I wrote back in November just waiting for me to show it some much needed TLC.

I should be panicking, but I’m not. I’m way too excited to start the career I always knew I was meant for.

In other words, let the frenzy begin!