Book Spotlight – “Conquest: A LitRPG Novel” by Aleric Elos

Overview

A primeval darkness threatens to destroy mankind…

The world’s largest gaming platform in the entire industry is led by a man with many secrets. The popular game DarkForce features the World of Zion which has been plagued by the destructive will of the Leviathan for centuries. What gamers don’t know is that the World of Zion actually exists, and the Leviathan has fed off of the souls of men and his fodder has become scarce. He now turns to Earth with an insatiable hunger. Only a woman from Earth who levels up to discover a divine inner power can challenge Earth’s Apocalyptic Fate.

Where To Buy:

AMAZON

From the Author

Aleric Elos is the Award-Winning Author of The SciFan™ Universe series. Known worldwide as the “Godfather of SciFan”, he likes to play MMORPGs, and since he doesn’t have the software engineering experience to develop his own games he decided to express his creativity in LitRPG form.

Links

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A History Of Werewolves: From Cave Paintings To The Hunters Saga – A Guest Post by Heidi Angell

At the start of the week, I introduced you to Heidi Angell, author of the Hunters Saga, and fellow urban fantasy writer. Today I bring you the second of two stops I’m hosting on The Hunted tour.

I originally offered to host this particular post, because it’s a subject very close to my heart, writing about shapeshifters myself. It’s also a topic Heidi and I have discussed from time to time, and our discussions have always left me with new insights into the whatever topic we’ve covered. So, when Heidi said she had this idea for a stop on her blog tour, I jumped at the chance to host it.

What you’re about to read is a very insightful piece that covers many aspects of mythology, medical diagnosis, and legends from ancient times right up to modern day. Please read until the very end, and visit some of the other stops on the tour.

A Brief History of Werewolves: From Cave Paintings to The Hunters Saga

The “History” of werewolves is a strange thing indeed. It might even predate written history. There are many ancient cave paintings that appear to depict werewolves and other human/ animal composites.

Every culture has a variation on the theme of shapeshifters, werewolves, and other were-creatures, but the oldest written tale of actual men turning into wolves goes back to ancient Greece and the tale of King Lycaon, who Zeus turned into a werewolf after the man was foolish enough to try and trick Zeus by feeding him human flesh.

Tales such as Little Red Riding Hood show our fear of wolves eating humans, and may explain many “Werewolf serial killer cases” throughout European history, such as the 1589 case of Peter Stumpp, the Werewolf of Bedburg. Indeed, many of the werewolf cases where the men (why is it always men? It certainly isn’t in legend.) were convicted based on evidence that these men did indeed kill and consume the flesh of their victims. Were they truly Werewolves, or were people linking the two fears?

There is even a rare psychological diagnosis of clinical lycanthropy, in which a person is afflicted with the delusion that they are or have changed into an animal. The patient will exhibit animalistic behaviors, but no physiological change has ever been noted.

wolfman-01-1200x887There is a genetic condition, often referred to as Werewolf Syndrome that causes massive growth of hair in unusual parts of the body, and is known to be hereditary.

And with all of this to muddle about in, there comes into play the legends. The oldest legends involved it being a curse on the man in some cultures (like King Lycoan) or the work of the Devil. Perhaps this is why people throughout history tended to have a softer spot for werewolves than for vampires. Other tales have it that the afflicted was harnessing the animal power through a magic girdle made from a wolf’s pelt, through spirit magic, ( such as in Norse mythology, the legends of Ulfhednar, who were similar to berserkers, but dressed in wolf pelts and channeled the fighting power of the wolf during battle.) or even through Saintly Divine intervention ( such as the story of St. Natalis, who cursed an illustrious Irish family with the result that each member of it was doomed to be a wolf for seven years).

werewolf_in_rise_of_the_lycans-underworldThe stories of werewolves being forced to change with the moon, and only being able to be killed by silver are relatively modern concoctions of fiction, with little reference prior to the 1600s. But the idea of some being born as a werewolf, and made as a werewolf have deep roots.

And of course, in modern paranormal romance, the idea of shifters who’s transitions are not as agonizing and who’s forms are more true to their animal counterparts, also brings a whole other wealth to pull from.

In The Hunters Saga, the Weres are of two groups: Made-Weres (based on the legends of those bitten by a werewolf, who are changed because of it.) and Born-Weres (families of genetically born werewolves who transition in puberty) and I pull from all the legend and history, twisting it all into the tale, which in future books we will see in more depth as we learn the origins of vampires and werewolves.

Want to learn more? The Hunters Saga is an urban fantasy series for those who believe that vampires should be killed not kissed. The tour for the second book in the series, The Hunted, is in full swing, and we would love for you to join in. See the tour master list here.

You can get a free copy of the first book in the series, The Hunters, by subscribing to my weekly e-newsletter full of bookish news from all genres.  Subscribe Here

The Hunted releases February, 18 th. Join the release party Here on February 17th-19th on Facebook.

B2BCyCon Is Coming – Show Your Support For The Fantasy Genre Events!

So What’s It All About?

There are rumblings deep under the mountain, and those who live close by swear that they have seen fire and smoke in the distance. Ever since the town was established, local bards have told tales of a great monster that sleeps beneath those sacred peaks. But every now and then it awakes, angry at the world, and with a hunger that will only be satisfied with destruction. Before you know it, the great beast will awaken, and unleash havoc upon the land.
The mayor is asking for volunteers to take on the challenge. Will you be one of the few with the bravery and skill to venture into the caverns in search of a way to destroy the beast, before it awakes?

Join the brave souls attending the Brain To Books Cyber Convention fantasy genre events. And keep reading to find out what it’s all about, how to show your support, and what is happening elsewhere at the convention.

What Is The Brain To Books Cyber Convention?

The Brain to Books Cyber Convention and Book Expo is an annual event that brings authors and readers together for a massive online event. Happening every April, it showcases some of the best indie authors in the world. It lets them meet readers, run competitions, take part in online discussions, and so much more. The entire weekend is dedicated to readers and books, so come join us.

I have the honor of having been asked to help coordinate the planning, organization, and running of the Fantasy Genre events. I’ll admit that I’m extremely excited about what we have coming up.

When is all this happening?

  • April 7th-9th 2017

Spread the Word:

What events are the fantasy genre authors running?

  • We’ll be hosting discussion groups on a range of subjects
  • Live role-play sessions: a team of writers will play characters from their stories, and readers influence the challenges the players must overcome.
  • There will also be a scavenger hunt running through the entire weekend, with some great prizes.

How to take part:

  1. Share this campaign with your friends, and help them discover some great books.
  2. “Save the Date” to enter for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card.
  3. Wait for the reminder about the event to arrive in your email.
  4. Attend the event and have a blast!

What Other Events Are Going On Elsewhere At The Convention?

  • YouTube discussion panels
  • Book expo showcase
  • Genre-based blog hops and tours
  • Giveaways
  • Grab bags
  • Goodreads author showcase
  • Author interviews
  • Workshops
  • Character competitions
  • Cover wars competition
  • …And much more.
  • Three days of a book lovers paradise.

Join us in 2017, as book lovers unite on April 7th, 8th, and 9th.

Readers can go here and Save the Date: http://b2bcycon.com/ (And be entered into a $100 Amazon Gift Card drawing)

Authors can check out the Getting Started Page: https://braintobooks.com/getting-started/

 

Rest In Peace Carrie Fisher (1956-2016) – My Personal Memories

carriefisherEarly Tuesday morning, we lost Carrie Fisher, after a heart attack earlier in the week. There are very few actresses who have become such massively iconic figures that their passing leaves gaping holes behind them. But, in my opinion Carrie Fisher is one of them.

Actress, writer, mental health advocate, and a star that almost everyone respected, Fisher sprang into the spotlight with Star Wars, and remained there. Her role as Leia might be what most people remember her for, but she had a hand in writing, or improving the screenplays for a number of very popular films.

However, my deepest respect has to go out to Fisher for her role in raising mental health awareness, and the way that she treated being bi-polar. When talking about her own mental health, Fisher was blunt, outspoken and for the most part disarming:

I am mentally ill. I can say that. I am not ashamed of that. I survived that, I’m still surviving it, but bring it on. Better me than you.

I get lots of awards for being mentally ill. Apparently, I am better at being mentally ill than almost anything else I’ve ever done. Seriously – I have a shelf of awards for being bipolar.

When it came to interacting with the fans, Fisher was well known for having embraced her role as Leia. She handled the attention the role brought her with grace, humor and an acceptance that few could have managed. For me though, her humor was best shown in her tweets, and social appearances. In September this year, she tweeted:

The only exercise I get lately is running off at the mouth & jumping to conclusions…..

And it is for these kinds of quotes that I am going to remember her best (excluding quotes from films). But, while we’re remembering this amazing woman, I felt that I should share some of my favorite on-screen memories…

carrie-fisher-star-wars-1977Princess Leia – Star Wars IV: A New Hope (1977)

For the vast majority of people growing up when I did, the first of the Star Wars films wasn’t the first time we saw Carrie Fisher playing the role that made her famous. However, it remains her most pivotal role, in my opinion.

Once reported as saying that she would

…go hang out with a bunch of robots for a few months and then return to my life and try to figure out what I want to do when I grow up. – source Business Insider

On the character of Leia, she has said:

Leia is not a real character. She is more of a caricature, and is somewhat one-dimensional. It’s not really possible to write out a list of Princess Leia’s likes and dislikes. I do know her favorite color, though, it’s white. She wears white all the time. But that doesn’t help me much. – source IMDB

carriefisher-bluesbrothers-601px-bb-sp1-1

The Mystery Woman – Blues Brothers (1980)

The Blues Brothers duo of Jake and Elwood Blues originated from minds of Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi, and first appeared on “Saturday Night Live”. Bringing great music to a TV audience, it was far from inevitable that they could translate that popularity into film. And, indeed, despite it’s all-star cast from music, film, and television, the film was far from a cinematic success.

Yet, it remains one of the biggest cult classics of all time, filled with amazing music, and some great guest appearances. None of these is more memorable than Carrie Fisher’s role as the ‘Mystery Woman’, who spends most of her on-screen time either preparing to, or actually trying to kill Jake.  For me this is one of the strangest roles in the film, because it takes a very long time to find out why she wants Jake dead. (And honestly, with the way he treats her, I can almost sympathize with her).

carrie-fisher-star-wars_lncima20161223_0140_3

Princess Leia – Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens(2015)

When Disney announced they were planning to do a new Star Wars film, that would follow on from the original trilogy, I was thrilled. But that was nothing compared to the joy of hearing that many of the original cast would be returning to reprise their roles.

Most importantly, we were going to get to see what happened to two of the characters we loved most from the series, Han and Leia. It was a shock to see how much time had passed for the two of them, and how the events between “Return of the Jedi” and “The Force Awakens” had changed them. But, when Han and Leia are reunited, it’s very clear that the love between them is still very much there.

I personally think this is one of the best performances Carrie Fisher ever put together, and gave us a story that was well overdue.

Famous Books – Mysterious & Fictional

As a writer, and reader, I’m very much aware of how important stories are to people. They bring us together, teach us valuable lessons, and they entertain us. But when those stories are written down and assembled into books, they can reach a wider audience than they otherwise would.

There are books that become famous because of the mysteries surrounding them. Whether that mystery stems from their origins, or from the fact that no-one has been able to translate their contents, these books remain the source of speculation for years after their discovery.

And then there are those books that become part of the popular culture, and crop up in any number of places, even though they never actually existed. Quite possibly the most famous of these books is the Necronomicon from the stories of HP Lovecraft, and many other writers of his time. According to Lovecraft, the Necronomicon is a book of spells and rituals, which can drive it’s readers insane, while opening their eyes to horrific worlds and realities beyond our own.

When I’m researching ideas for stories, I sometimes come across things online that I just have to share. In this particular case, I was looking for the title of a book of magic that I only half-remembered (and still haven’t located), when I came across two videos that caught my attention.

Mark Your Calendar – The Brain To Books Holiday Giveaway & CyCon Sampler – December 16-18 2016

brain-to-books-holiday-banner

Day #1 Launch the Holidays with the Slush Brain Crew

Where: Facebook

Description:

Embrace the Debauchery

Two years ago, the zaniest, weirdest group of eccentrics collided in a drunken stupor. Brought together by the love of zombies, fleas, and drinking, these authors found sanctuary within their insanity. Today, we celebrate this imbroglio! We’re giving away stuff all in the name of…we really don’t know why we’re doing it. If you love Science Fiction, Fantasy, all things nerdy, and well…booze, join us for this one day on board the HMS Slush Brain!

***So not family friendly.***

$100.00 AMAZON GIFT CARD GIVEAWAY AND BOOK BASH!

Sign up is now open and ends 8:00 PM EST 18 December 2016. Winner is announced 8:30 PM EST 18 December 2016!

Enter for a chance to win at http://angelabchrysler.com/2016/11/hms-slush-brain-book-bash/

The Schedule for the HMS Slush Brain Book Bash!

  • 11:00 AM EST – Angela B. Chrysler
  • 12:00 PM EST – Kylie Jude
  • 1:00 PM EST – Cindy L Schneider
  • 2:00 PM EST – Adam Dreece
  • 3:00 PM EST – Matthew William Harrill
  • 4:00 PM EST – Jay Norry
  • 5:00 PM EST – Cindy L Schneider
  • 6:00 PM EST – MLS Weech
  • 7:00 PM EST – Ani Manjikian
  • 8:00 PM EST – ***HAPPY HOUR***

Zombies From Space…and Vampires

Day #2 Holiday Giveaway and CyCon Sampler

Where: Facebook

Description:

Every year Brain to Books hosts a Holiday Book Giveaway. This year, our giveaway is a CyCon Sampler. Get a sneak preview of the Brain to Books Cyber Convention. While you’re here, we have a $100.00 Amazon gift card to hand out to someone along with a list of books we’re giving away!

1 – Browse the Author Takeover displaying sales, giveaways, games, prizes, etc.
2 – $100.00 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway
3 – Holiday Book Giveaway
4 – Blog Hop (YA, Science Fiction, and Romance)
5 – Vote in Character Tournaments

Scheduled appearances

If you’ve stopped in, please take a moment to share this event with your followers. Every little bit helps.

Takeover Author Sign Up for 17 December 2016:

10:00 AM EST – ***WELCOME AND INTRO***
10:30 AM EST – Angela B. Chrysler
11:00 AM EST – Joshua Robertson
11:30 AM EST – Dove Winters
12:00 PM EST – Stephanie and Amanda present…
1:00 PM EST – Karina Kantas
1:30 PM EST – Dianna Wyles
2:00 PM EST – ***ABOUT THE CYCON***
2:30 PM EST – S. A. Hoag (AKA Sheila Hoag )
3:00 PM EST – Tabitha Barret
3:30 PM EST – Carol Ann King
4:00 PM EST – A.F. Stewart
4:30 PM EST – Joe Compton
5:00 PM EST – Connie Cockrell
5:30 PM EST – Devorah Fox
6:00 PM EST – ***OPEN TO ALL AUTHORS WHO MISSED SIGN UP***
6:30 PM EST – ***OPEN TO ALL AUTHORS WHO MISSED SIGN UP***
7:00 PM EST – Susanne Leist
7:30 PM EST – Ani Manjikian
8:00 PM EST – Kerry Alan Denney
8:30 PM EST – Tom Fallwell

Day #3 Release Parties and Winners Announced

Where: Facebook

Description:

Ani Manjikian is preparing to release the 2nd book in her series “Stars of Heros” (Heros as in Thracian Heros from Greek mythology) is a Science Fiction novel.

Join us for Science Fiction fun and Mythological related books! Prizes, games, giveaways, and so much more!

TAKEOVER SIGN UP EVENT! Authors! Select your times below!

This is a mythology (Greek, Roman, and Thracian) Science Fiction and Fantasy!

10:00 AM EST –
11:00 AM EST –
12:00 PM EST –
1:00 PM EST –
2:00 PM EST –
3:00 PM EST
4:00 PM EST
5:00 PM EST
6:00 PM EST
7:00 PM EST
8:00 PM EST – WINNERS ANNOUNCED!

We are still taking sign ups! Authors! Jump in and grab yours here!

Save