As the Chair Turns (a paranormal, tongue-in-cheek romance series) by Eliza March begins with Hair of the Wolf, Book One coming this Fall.
Anyone who’s ever read my writing knows I have an underlying sense of snide… Is it humor? Or sarcasm? Or scattered brain cell patterns from working with too many chemicals and inhaling too much hair spray?But funny? I’m not so sure. Lately, maybe more so than ever. Nevertheless, I was a reader (and, also apparently a drinker) before I was a writer.
I belonged to Harlequin’s “books of the month club”. Not sure what it’s really called. But I got additional gifts when they arrived. Purple wine glasses I had to use while I read the books they sent. I had a book a day habit and the purple glass always looked full … too bad it wasn’t. My wine habit couldn’t keep up with my reading or I’d pass out before I finished the book…and four books, Harlequin? That didn’t keep me satisfied. I went to the used book store to supplement my reading addiction, ordered books online, and then discovered a few small ebook presses. Whala! I would never go without something to read again…and I could download at 2 AM! Book two in the series completed? Ah! Book three is available immediately! Yea.
Soon, the series didn’t satisfy, the authors couldn’t write fast enough, I’d imagined the story twist differently, the characters reactions differently, and I had an idea…write it myself. At least I couldn’t drink and type at the same time.
When I first began writing, one of my stylists suggested As The Chair Turns for a title, and with her blessings I am going to use it. The series was originally intended to be reality based and a serious, non-fiction fiction. I just couldn’t do it. Fifty years in this business, in one capacity or another, didn’t allow for it.
What I didn’t suspect at the time was that:
1. I’d ever write it.
2. It would be paranormal.
3. It would be funny.
Karsley, “like Parsley,” thank you. Now that I’m finally going to use it, I hope you find it up to your title suggestion. I doubt Karsley ever suspected it would be something like this. But she has a great sense of humor so I think it will be perfect.
I’d started out writing romantic suspense, then for a while, found my niche in erotic paranormal romance. And I was pretty darned good at it, too. The only thing funny about that is the idea of me writing erotic anything. My husband suggested I write what I know. I have had one husband, five children, the beauty industry, and reality for experience. That was more what he had in mind. But hey, Problem was I read lots of fiction. Don’t forget that book a day habit. And I read sexy fiction. Paranormal fiction.
I guess he didn’t expect me to stray off to my wild imaginary, sexy-shifter worlds. Uh-duh…that had become my escape reality. Who needed more of what I did every day? I refused to consider writing about the industry I’d been immersed in for…well…forever. (Fifty years is close enough to forever to qualify, I believe.)
One morning I woke up with my hero and heroine in my head in a scene in a salon. Deja vie. They were sexy. New addition. Nice. But they were funny. Too funny. I didn’t write funny. I’m not funny …or I wasn’t, anyway.
i thought for a moment and suddenly realized in recent years, I’ve started having comic-strip visions in my head when people speak or I read something. The intent changes and I see the hysterical side of life. Everything has a humorous side, right? The visions I have usually include little clouds of dialogue pointing to the characters’ (sometimes cartoon animals’) heads. Often, I have to bite my tongue to stop the hee-haw response I feel swelling up inside me. You experience that too, don’t you? No? I’ve wondered why my imagination for story-telling waited so long, but it was probably for the best while I was doing personal things to people’s hair and bodies.
Here’s an except from Hair of the Wolf from Book One of As the Chair Turns. To set up the scene, Dela is the only human working in Frankie de Wolf’s world renowned salon and spa in Boca Raton, FL. They are going to a hair show in Vegas…Dela is the responsible one until the slot machines start singing…
All rights reserved Copyright 2017 Eliza March
…Our group filed past the flashing lights, then the digital billboards caught my attention. Suddenly, I had a change of heart. My gambling release switch flipped off and desire did a happy dance in my pants. Images of gyrating, shirtless men from “Down Under” put me in a different frame of mind.
Vegas. Sin City. I began thinking of all the potential sin and felt my lips curl. I was here to party. What happens here…yadda yadda yadda…right?
“Earth to Dela. Are you ready for a couple of those in your lap?” Selena, the female cat shifter, purred, pointing to the Chippendale poster.
Frankie didn’t look at me, waiting for my answer, but I noticed the way his ears perked up. They sort of twitched in my direction. I weighed my answer carefully, reconsidering my previous let-it-all-go moment, and just gave the shifter my non-commital smile.
I had enough on my plate with this raucous bunch of supernatural species, who, under normal circumstances, did their best to look human and contain themselves. Here, I’d already seen evidence of their loss of control. Eye shapes and colors were the first signs. Contacts were a good explanation since shimmering silver eyes weren’t a color humans were naturally blessed with, but that was just for starters. Some of their other traits weren’t as easy to explain. The younger vampires were already setting off smoke when direct sunlight hit them and one of the younger werewolf’s ears sprouted hair.
Never mind. You get the gist.
Controlling them at Luna de la Mar promised to be easier than keeping my staff’s identities secret in a town filled with them…. In Boca, being the only human in charge of every paranormal species unknown to the local inhabitants was harder than making them seem eccentric or weird instead of different. Here, I had a feeling my boss and the staff were going to be, not only uncooperative but, downright bad influences.
By the time I rounded up transportation for everyone and gave directions to the hotel and instructions regarding where to pick up the hair show tickets, I’d lost half the group and all their attention.
Whatever! The staff were all adults of a sort. They could fend for themselves. After all, I wasn’t their caretaker this weekend. They were powerful, magical, and gifted. I, on the other hand, was merely human. “Screw it,” I mumbled to no one in particular. Only a handful of the staff were still nearby, close enough to hear me anyway.
“You need a drink and entertainment, sweetie.” Jen, the witch, slipped her arm around my neck and scrunched her magical nose at me. Before I could argue, one of my favorite witches prepared to glamour me right there in the taxi line, in front of fake Elvis, a poster of Neil Diamond, and God knows how many witnesses.
I gasped and held up my hand to ward off Jen’s magic, then realized she was right. “What the hell? Do your worst!” I opened my arms wide as she doused her magic over me.
Hell, the six-inch red stilettos didn’t even hurt my feet. Wow. I could get used to this. I liked the taller illusion. The view was pretty awesome. I just hoped I didn’t topple over what with all my cleavage piled up in front like this.
Carrie, my other witch-bitch, just grinned up at the billboard. “We need three or more of them…” She pointed at a digital video of bare-chested Chippendales.
Chippendales and Thunder From Down Under?
Be still my thundering heart. How would I ever get through the weekend? With a low moan, I clenched my jaw and turned away from the smorgasbord of flesh and muscle. Calculating the idea of “more” … my right brain did the math while my left side did the architectural planning…