Guest Post and Giveaway: Pamela Palmer, author of Ecstasy Untamed

I’m so excited to have Pamela Palmer on the blog today! Pamela is the author of the Feral Warriors series, and her brand new Feral Warriors novel, Ecstasy Untamed, is out today! She’s here to talk about keeping a series fresh, and she’s also generously offered 3 copies of Desire Untamed (Feral Warriors #1) to 3 lucky winners, so please check out the giveaway deets at the bottom of the post!

Please welcome Pamela to the blog!

Keeping a Series Fresh
By Pamela Palmer

Readers like series, especially in the paranormal/sci-fi/fantasy genres. It takes a bit of time to come to understand the world in such books, often a world a reader can visit no other way. My Feral Warriors series, for example, an urban fantasy romance, is a world of shape-shifters, mages, and Daemons who live and battle beneath the radar of the humans around them in and around Northern Virginia. The Feral Warriors, the last nine shape-shifters left in the world, each of whom shifts into a different animal, are all that stand between us and destruction.

Readers want to revisit these worlds over and over, but the difficulty for the author comes in keeping the stories fresh and interesting and not simply replaying the same scenarios over and over again. Sometimes we succeed and sometimes we don’t and the jury, of course, is usually split on that point. I’ve drifted away from a number of my once-favorite series because the stories no longer particularly interest me. And yet those authors’ new books continually hit the bestseller lists. Clearly, other readers don’t feel the same as I do. They’re still thoroughly engrossed in those series and those worlds.

So how, as a writer, do you go about keeping a series fresh? All I can do is tell you what I believe and what I’m striving for with my Feral Warriors series, the sixth book of which, ECSTASY UNTAMED, hits stores today. The way I see it, the first thing you have to do is decide whether your series is telling a single story or is simply a collection of episodes without a strong external story arc. With television shows, this would be the difference between a normal drama or comedy and a serialized drama. Can you watch the episodes out of order and miss little, or do you have to watch in order to keep from getting lost? The techniques required to keep each type fresh differs, but the one thing that is critical to both is the careful application of change. Characters need to grow, situations need to vary. Things need to HAPPEN.

In the serialized drama, which is the category I think most paranormal/sci-fi/fantasy series fall into, there’s another element that must be addressed: the external story plot. A strong series story-line requires most of the same elements as any book: an intriguing beginning, at least a couple of strong and surprising turning points during the middle, and an exciting, rip-roaring end.

With each book, it’s important to keep the reader engaged with the characters and the world while introducing something new, often surprising, and to end each book with the reader wanting more. Even, as in the case of my Feral Warrior series, when the books are stand-alone romances. Each book in my series focuses on a different pair of protagonists, a couple who will, by the end of the book, fall in love and commit to one another. But the series is one continuing story. In book six, ECSTASY UNTAMED, we hit the first big turning point. Surprising things happen in this book, some early readers have even called them shocking, in a good way. And they’re delighted.

Because these are romances, I always, always, always wrap up the primary love story at the end of each book. But the external plot, rarely. Often, I leave one of the main story threads dangling—warriors missing, Daemons on the loose. And this book is no different. I strive to always leave my readers with a warm feeling of love conquering all even as I leave them needing to read the next book to find out what happens next. A story within a story. An urban fantasy told through a series of romances. Sometimes the plotting gets a little tricky, but my goal—any writer’s goal—is to keep the books exciting and intriguing. And to keep the series fresh.

A question for you: Which series are you reading and enjoying, and how many books in that series have you read? I’ll give away signed copies of book 1 in the Feral Warriors series, DESIRE UNTAMED, to three commenters.

**GIVEAWAY DETAILS**

1. Giveaway is for 3 copies of DESIRE UNTAMED (Feral Warriors #1) to 3 winners.
**Giveaway is now closed! Thanks to everyone that entered!

About the author:
Pamela Palmer is the NY Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Feral Warriors shape shifter series, the Esri series and, under the pseudonym Pamela Montgomerie, the Jewels of Time time travel series. When Pamela’s initial career goal of captaining starships didn’t pan out, she turned to engineering, satisfying her desire for adventure with books and daydreams until finally succumbing to the need to create worlds of her own. Pamela lives and writes in the suburbs of Washington, D.C.
Keep up with Pamela: Website | Twitter
Purchase Ecstasy Untamed: Amazon | Barnes and Noble
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About Desire Untamed (giveaway book):
They are called Feral Warriors—an elite band of immortals who can change shape at will. Sworn to rid the world of evil, consumed by sorcery and seduction, their wild natures are primed for release . . .

Kara MacAllister’s quiet small-town life is transformed forever the night a powerful stranger rips her from her home, claiming she is the chosen one—the key to his survival.

Spiriting her away into the rain-soaked night, Lyon reveals a truth Kara can barely credit. She’s immortal, and the only one who can save his race. And deep within her, he arouses a fierce, primal hunger beyond anything she’s ever imagined.

But only when their lives are threatened by an ancient evil will Kara and Lyon realize they have found a love they would risk their immortal souls to claim . . . and a powerful desire that could never, ever be tamed.

35 Comments:

  1. Pamela, congratulations on the release of ECSTASY UNTAMED, it has been awaited like the birth of a baby and now it’s here!
    Actually, I follow several series – yours, of course, and I have read them all except DESIRE UNTAMED & ECSTASY UNTAMED but plan to remedy that, although if I could win a copy of DESIRE, I’d be on cloud nine! I follow Lynsay Sands’ Argeneau series and have read them all except the two novellas. I follow Kerrelyn Sparks’ Love at Stake series and have read all but a couple. I follow Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series and have read all but 1 of those and the novellas. A few more authors, too, but you get the gist – I LOVE Paranormal Romance. I also follow a couple of series in historical/regency – Gaelen Foley’s Inferno Club for one. I suppose come 2012, I’ll be following the Vamp City series, too. : )

  2. Pamela,
    I am so happy for you! Congratulations ! I am wishing you all the success in the world, you deserve it 🙂 I love your series and I have read each one, but I have been patiently waiting for Hawk’s books 🙂 ( cough cough and Wolf’s ^__^)
    Currently, I am also reading the Dark Hunter Series by Sherriyln Kenyon ( and a few other of her series). I have read all of them, and I believe there are about 30 or so. I am also reading Maya Banks KGI series, Marjorie M. Liu’s Dirk and Steele Series, Tiger Curse Series by Colleen Houck, and about 6 or 7 more series 🙂
    I really love reading romance 🙂
    Thank you so much for the opportunity, I am a very loyal fan and will be reading your vampire series soon to come :).
    Thank you!
    -J.Y.C

  3. One of my favorite series is the Psy-Changling series by Nalini Singh. There are ten in the series at the moment. I have read all of the, the first seven in a week and a half. Just didn’t want to put them down. Other series Love at Stake by Kerrelyn Sparks, Argeneau series by Lynsay Sands, and the list goes on.

    Congratulations on the new release. I look forward to starting this series as well.

    Elizabeth

  4. Hi Amy!
    Thanks for stopping by. Love that you’re enjoying the Ferals. : )

    You could be doing commercials for Avon Books! Every author you listed writes for my publisher. Awesome. I love all these ladies’ books, too!

  5. Hi Jenny!
    Thank you! I’m so glad you’re excited about Hawke’s book. Wulfe will get his book. Eventually. I promise. : )

  6. Hey Elizabeth,
    I adore Nalini Singh’s Psy-Changeling series. Slave to Sensation blew me away and I’ve been a huge fan of hers ever since. Thanks for the congrats!

  7. Congratulations Pam! I’m excited to read Hawke’s book. I get absolutely lost in your stories and I often find my heart pounding! I think you’re doing an excellent job in keeping the series fresh and exciting. And of course, romantic! With little time in my schedule to actually read, I’m always afraid to get involved with series because I have a hard time putting them down. One of my current favs though (besides the Feral Warriors) are Terri Garey’s Nicki Styx series.

  8. Just wanted to say thanks for such a fun read, Pamela. I’ve enjoyed all the books so far and look forward to more.

    For the Question: I *just* finished Eve Silver’s Otherkin series. There are 4 books and a prequel novella. The final book, Body of Sin, was released fairly recently. Had a blast reading – I really love her kick butt heroines. Not to mention the impressive guys.

  9. Kristina Parmenter

    Congrats on the release! I just finished reading the last book (so far) in JR Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series! I can’t wait to read more! Definately going to be picking up your latest!!!!

  10. Hi Pamela. Got the ECSTASY UNTAMED, and this is the one I am reading. I have all 6 in the series. 7 if you count Zee’s book. Can not wait to read your new vamp series.

  11. I follow a lot of series. ATM I’m currently up to date on all of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series as well as the Lords of the Underworld. I’ve read 5 of the 6 Night Huntress series. Unfortunately I haven’t read more than book 1 in this series yet. I need to fix that!

  12. Hey Candis!
    Thank you. Such a wonderful compliment coming from an author I admire so much. : )

  13. Hi Laura,
    Love that you’re enjoying the books! I’ve heard so many good things about Eve Silver. I’m going to have to pick up her books.

  14. Hi Kristina,
    Thank you! JR Ward is one of my favorites.

  15. Sin!
    So glad you stopped by. : ) Hope you enjoy Hawke’s story!

  16. Hi Megan,
    Those are some great series you’re following. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy this one, too!

  17. I just finished reading Hard Bitten by Chloe Neill. I am waiting for the next one to come out. Congrats on the release!!! Thanks for the giveaway.

    s_walters01 at yahoo dot com

  18. Congrats on the book release!! One of my favorite series is The Morganville Vampires and I’m on book #6! It just keeps getting better and better 🙂 Thanks for this amazing giveaway! I would love to win a copy of your book ;D

  19. That cover is amazing, goes perfectly with the title. I love all of your books, own most, and can’t wait to read this one! edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom

  20. Your books have been in my TBR list for a while, just havn’t started them. I love reading a series (and love to have a handfull of books at one time so I can read one book after another) and getting sucked into a new world. Your books sound like I will be very addicted to them once I start =) Can’t wait!

    I read and follow multiple searies, Mercy Thompson, Nighthuntress, Immortals After Dark, and Breeds to name a few. Currently I am caught up with all of them, so I need something new!

    An interesting post, I can see where it would be a challenge to keep a series fresh after so many books. And yes I can think of a few series that I have lost interest in after the number of books reaches the high teens, yet they are still very popular. I hope you continue to love working on your books, fresh ideas and all =)

    eyesofblueice (at) gmail (dot) com

  21. I am currently not reading any series. I follow Hush Hush, Fallen and Shiver series. There are other series I would like to read including this one. Please enter me in contest. Tore923@aol.com

  22. Thanks Sariah and Julie!

    Hey Krystal! I love that you’re enjoying the books. And glad you like the cover!

    Lexi, I hope you enjoy the Feral Warriors. You’re definitely reading the kinds of series I love.

    Hi Victoria!

  23. Congratulations on the new release Pamela Palmer. Fantastic guest post, you said it perfectly. I think that is why I only seem to gravitate towards series instead of stand alone. There is just so much to embrace. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Now for the series I am reading. Well, I don’t think I have enough space for that LOL! Some series I am in the middle of as we speak:

    Nalini Singh’s Psy-Changeling series. I am on book 3 and there are 10 books in the series (book 11 up soon). I started book 1 and was knocked out of my seat. Brilliant!

    Rachel Caine’s The Morganville Vampire series. On book book 8, there are 10 books (book 11 out November 1), still love the series so much. And the more Myrnin, the better 🙂

    Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series. On book 6, there are 6 in the series so far. I love Cat and Bones so much, it is hard to turn away.

    J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series. On book 10 (coming in March, WOOHOO!). Another favorite series, the men are irresistible and just so badass.

    And many more. I really torture myself LOL! Thank you so much for the giveaway. This book has been on my wishlist for a while, Man I hope I win this one. Thank you again for the giveaway and guest post 🙂

    drharleyquinn87 (at) gmail (dot) com

  24. Hey Pamela,

    Currently I am reading two series… The feral warriors series ecstasy untamed which is the 6th book and branded by fire Psy- changeling series by Nalini Singh, which has 10 books in the series. Really want a bite before christmas which contains a shorts story about cat and bones by Jeaniene Frost and patiently waiting for the night prince series.

    I have so many series to read and authors I love which definitely includes you Pamela Palmer!!!!!

    Helen

  25. I absolutely love a series. It is like visiting with friends who you see only occasionally but are right back with them to catch up on the current news. I recent won Book 3 in a series that I had not read and being a little OCD had to go out and get Books 1 and 2 LOL (yes I know that sounds like an excuse just to get a new book and it really is, but hey I could not start with book three). The series is by Kelly Meding – the Dreg City series. I have just begun Three Days to Dead and so far am loving it. Thank you so much for sharing with us today and for the opportunity to win a copy of book one in you Feral Warriors series, Desire Untamed, I would love to read it I am a follower of this lovely blog and enjoy the fun 🙂

    dz59001[at]gmail[dot]com

  26. Congrats on the new release! I have multiple series that I’m reading, but I’ll just name my most recent. I just finished a short story in an anthology for Ilona Andrews’ Kate Daniels series. I’ve read all five full length books in the series and whatever short stories that are currently out. Thanks for the great giveaway!

    kliu107(at)gmail(dot)com

  27. I have not yet read any of your books, but I am very curious to read at least one – lately I’ve been seeing a lot of comments about you books – so I want to read some too now =)
    I love reading series of books. The last series I have read was ‘Blue Blood for Life’ by Stacy Eaton. She is a new author and published two books in this series so far, and I am patiently waiting for the third book now.

    Thank you for a great giveaway!

    tatiana_lwg (at) yahoo.com

  28. Great, but tough, question. I follow so many series! I just finished up Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series…LOVED IT! I also just finished Vikki Petterson’s Zodiac series-another LOVED IT! I’m currently in the middle of Kim Harrison’s Rachel Morgan series-I think I’ve read six of those (plus some shorter stories in anthologies). I’m two or three books into Patricia Brigg’s Mercy Thompson series. I’m about 5 or 6 into Christine Feehan’s Game series and probably double that with her Carpathians. I’m in the double digits with Laurell K. Hamilton-I’ve read most of Anita Blake and most of Meredith Gentry. I think I’m up to 15 or 16 with Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum. I’m in about the same place with J.D. Robb’s In Death series. I’ve got a bunch in my TBR pile (I’m hoping to get to Hexed, Hounded, and Hammered and start that series). I seem to gravitate toward series more than the stand alone novel as I like the development of characters and then the secondary characters getting their own story, etc.

    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com

  29. I’m currently following many series, but my fav (so far) is the Black Dagger Brotherhood by J.R. Ward. I’ve read all the way to the soon to be released (in March!). It’s one of the only series that I will absolutely stop whatever I’m doing to read when the next book comes out:)

    Thanks for the great giveaway & HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!

    yadkny@hotmail.com

  30. I read alot of different series, and I like to go back and re read them before a new book comes out. It doesn’t matter which genre, I read pretty much everything. I can’t wait to read your new book! Thank you for the chance to win!

    Emily T

  31. I read a lot of different series, started with the Charlaine Harris books and continued from there. From the Twilight books, all of the Jayne Castle (Jayne Ann Krentz), Katie McAllister, seems like I’ve been on a Paranormal kick lately. As I finish one series, I start another. Friend of mine calls us biblioholics. 🙂

  32. I have so many series that I’m working through right now, but I’m just starting J.R. Ward’s BDB series. I’m starting with the first one and I have the next five lined out. So excited to get started!!!

  33. i absolutely love every one in ur books i cant wait to see if u do a book on pink cause i love her. keep the books coming!!!!!

  34. Hi, Pamela reading your books are a treat, the first book in the series “Desired Untamed” was great. I love paranormal and its always the first book in the series that make me decide to continue any book series, but I can honestly says that I have not yet read a paranormal series that has disappoint me. Your series and it plot gets better with each additional book and I am looking forward to read “Ecstasy Untamed”,

  35. The series that I’m reading and love are

    The Vampire Queen Series by Joey W. Hill- I’ve read all of them waiting for book 8 to be released

    Daughters of Arianne Series by Joey W. Hill- Read all 3 praying she writes another

    Knights of the Boardroom by Joey W. Hill- Only read the first one but have the next 3 in the mail

    Nature of Desire series by Joey w. Hill- Read the first 2 waiting on the others

    Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning- Read the entire series waiting for the spinoff to start

    Terra’s Guardians by PJ Schnyder- Read the first 2 waiting for the next

    Knossos West by Stella and Audra Price- Read the series started the spinoff- American Ophidians waiting for the next release

    I guess that’s enough for now… I read a lot of series!

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