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Releasing Sept 25th, 2015
Have you ever loved someone so much that you ignored what was right in front of you?
After a decade of friendship, Zaniel Baker finds himself envious of his best friends, Micheal, Ryan and Trevor. Even with a dark cloud of unspoken tragedy lingering over their friendship, his friends have managed to find everything that Zaniel wants for himself...happiness and love.
Then he meets Anastasia. Love at first sight soon turns to a licentious obsession.
When tragedy strikes yet again, Zaniel's blinders are ripped off, leaving him in a web of lies, deception, and betrayal.
Can he come back from something that has turned his life upside down? Will his past be a part of the problem or the solution?
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“You know the worse part about that day bro?” Zaniel asked Ryan as they sat down at their regular both at Monahan’s.
Ryan sighed and shook his head. “Again with you and memory lane man. All the way here you talked about that day. That was over thirty years ago. Why you have to bring that crap up. You make me look like a pussy every time you tell the story.”
Trevor and Michael laughed as they took their spots at the both. The four men have been friends for over thirty years. They started in kindergarten together and celebrating any one of their birthdays, someone reminds them of their rough past.
“Aw look at him. Zaniel looking a little sensitive not being able to finish his story about our best friend getting killed.” Michael said as he downed another beer.
That time had been a sad time for them all, and Michael was the last one to want to hear about that day.
“Sorry, I was just saying that Pauly is really missed and that’s it.”
“No, you son of a bitch you were going to say if we had listened to Trevor and stayed the fuck away from that store Pauly would be here right now. Blame me still huh Zan?” Trevor grabbed Michael by the arm when he tried to stand. Zaniel looked away and Ryan shook his head again and called the waitress over. “Hey, can we get another couple rounds over here?”
“Trevor man, I have never said anything like that, that you were to blame. If anything we are all to blame. It was a dumb idea and we all went along with it and now it’s over. Look Happy Birthday man, and a cheery toast too many more.” Zaniel clinked everybody's glass. Michael kept tossing his drink back and ignored him.
His teeth clenched together, but Zaniel kept quiet. Especially when Ryan kicked his foot under the table. When he looked over, Ryan did a small shake of his head.
“Hey remember when Mike here, had that girl in his basement? Remember his big brother Kyle came home, and he heard them down there humping and grinding away, and Kyle ran down in the basement naked screaming the house was on fire, and he couldn’t find his clothes?” Ryan chuckled so hard he could barely get his sentence out. Trevor laughed and beer squirted from his nose.
Michael laughed too, but it wasn’t one of those hearty laughs as the guys had. He glanced over at Zaniel and asked, “Hey, if you don’t blame me, how come you stop talking to me that summer. It was both our birthday’s coming up before school and you didn’t say a damn word to me that summer. Why Zaniel? Why you cut out like that man.”
“Come on Mike. We are here to do shots, drink beer and talk shit. Let’s get some food too.” Ryan said as he waved the waitress over to them once again
“Bullshit Ryan. You have always been like that man, ever since we were kids. The fuck’n peacemaker. You break everything in your body and all you got to say is let’s eat, drink and fuck’n be merry.” Michael took the last swing of his third beer and started to stand.”
Zaniel stood and grabbed his arm, “Hey Mike…”
Michael gave him no chance to say anything else because he punched him in the face. Zaniel went backward, and his back hit the both. He swiftly recovered and went after Michael, who had turned to walk away. He grabbed his arm and was about to hit him when Michael moved and jabbed him in the gut. Zaniel went down to his knees.
Interview with Taabia
When did you first begin writing? When did you first become one of Amazon’s bestselling authors?
I started making up stories before I started kindergarten. My mother would always tell me enough was enough. That meant I had talked her ear off with my creative chatter. There were always the stories that started the sentence with and then…. She would send me outside to play to get away from the long drawn out ones. As for actual writing my stories down, I was in school, and my bestie and I would meet up after school sometimes or weekends, and write stories together in my basement. One of us would start, and the other would write the ending.
I became an Amazon Bestseller with my book Jessica’s Obsession, the first book in my Anthony Stone Series. That was February 16, 2013. The book stayed at #2 and #4 for an entire week under Amazon’s Hot New Releases. It stayed in the top 10 for an entire month in the category Body Art and Tattoos. By June of 2013, it still ranked in the top 100 between #46 and up as best seller. When it was at #2 and #4, it ranked directly beside tattoo superstar artist, Kat Von D.
Knowing what you know now, what would you do differently if you were just beginning your writing career.
I think the only thing I would have done differently would have set aside a bank account for my writing. It takes money to be an Indie writer. You have to have the right cover, your grammar has to be on point, and you need marketing to get ahead.
How many books/series have your written?
I can happily say I am on my tenth book. I have written or started, three series.
Who has been the biggest influence in your writing career and how?When I started out, I had one person who pulled me aside and told me what I was doing wrong. Her name is Author Kathy Rowe. Kathy gave me so many pointers and set me on the right path. Now, I use what she taught me and put it towards my writings.
When beginning a new series, do you prefer to stay in relative distance of your comfort zone or hurl yourself into the unknown and research?
I research everything. Even if I know something, I use the internet and books to make sure I have the facts correct.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?One of the most surprising things I learned about creating my books was how much I loved every aspect of putting the book together, except editing. I figured editing would be great because I could make changes, add what needed to be added, and create a better story. Wrong! Editing is one of the worse parts of putting together a book. When you self edit, you become wrapped up in being a perfectionist, and the pressure of getting everything ready for print.
How much of your own personality/mannerisms come into play in your characters?
I think when I write my erotica scenes, my imagination plays a huge part in creating what my characters do and say. I listen to my muses, but I also know what I want for them, so it usually goes the way I want in the erotic scenes. I change the scenes a lot before they read the way I want them to read.
From the start, what was your most successful method of expanding your reader base? What “false paths have you traveled?
I would say the most successful way that I have used to expand my reader base is by inviting people into getting to know me as the writer. My Facebook page and my writer's page, I am very open about my writing, and I tell no fairytales. I let people know I am having a bad writing day, I am unfocused, or that I really don’t feel like having it out with my muses. People who find my truthful demeanor, find me interesting, and sometimes decide they want to know if my books is as good as I say. =)
One of the worse paths I have traveled in trying to get a reader base had been joining the promotion groups. I joined so many, and received little to no readers. Another disaster for me was Thunderclap. Yes, I gained followers, and added people to my twitter and friends list on Facebook, but no sales.
Amazon Bestselling Author Taabia Dupree was born in the United States and grew up on the Eastern Seaboard. Her love of books and anything with words came from her parents. As a young person, Taabia read anything she could get her hands on, from cereal boxes, to the Encyclopedia Britannica, to the National Geographic, to the business section of the local newspaper. Yet some of her favorite reads came from writers; L'Amour, Tolstoy, Eddings, Tolkien, Hugo, Wright, Dickens, and Hemingway.
In 1999, Taabia started writing erotic fantasy stories for online story groups. She self-published her first erotic story in 2011.
Today, Taabia Dupree writes poetry and erotic short stories. Her books can be found in several genres, including coming of age, mystery & psychological-thrillers, fantasy, and paranormal. She's currently working on a crime novella and a sci-fi fantasy novella.