24.12.12

Merry, Merry Christmas!

Happy Christmas to all. As a gift, how about a very fun, heartwarming holiday movie rec? It's a film I'd not heard of until my lovely Brit sister passed the DVD to me yesterday. Last night I watched with my little family, and we give it an enthusiastic Eight Thumbs Up:

Click image for a preview

May peace be in your heart and on your lips and all around you.  See ya next year, cheeky monkeys. ;)


17.12.12

Happy Book Birthday to Embrace


It’s Embrace’s Book Birthday and to celebrate the success of her debut novel Cherie Colyer is giving away a copy of her book plus swag. Before we get to that, here is a brief excerpt and some information about Embrace.

“I’m beginning to realize I’d do whatever it took to keep someone I care about safe—expose what I am, harness my anger, let my darker side take over. That’s one promise I know I can make without regret.”
[…]
I was about to protest when he then asked, “What about you? Just what are your feelings toward me?” I must have hesitated because he laughed, light and warm, yet there was a bitter edge to it. “I just told you I’d embrace the dark to protect you, and you still can’t open up to me?”

Embrace
by Cherie Colyer

How far would you go to save the people you love?

Synopsis:
Madison is familiar enough with change, and she hates everything about it. Change took her long-term boyfriend away from her. It caused one of her friends to suddenly hate her. It’s responsible for the death of a local along with a host of other mysterious happenings. But when Madison meets a hot new guy, she thinks her luck is about to improve.

Madison is instantly drawn to the handsome and intriguing Isaac Addington. She quickly realizes he’s a guy harboring a secret, but she’s willing to risk the unknown to be with him.

Her world really spins out of control, however, when her best friend becomes delusional, seeing things that aren’t there and desperately trying to escape their evil. When the doctors can’t find the answers, Madison seeks her own.

Nothing can prepare her for what she is about to discover.
~

To view the book trailer click here. If you’d like to curl up with Embrace today you can download the eBook on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

To win a copy of Embrace, all you have to do is fill out this form

Find Cherie: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter 


14.12.12

Hobbit Blogfest & Cover Reveal



What better way to celebrate An Unexpected Journey coming to the big screen than with a Hobbit Blogfest, hosted by Tyrean Martinson and M. Pax? Here are my answers to these very hobbitty questions:

What is your favorite hobbit characteristic/or the one that you think closely resembles you . . .?

Hairy feet.  Just kidding!! Blech! I like to think that I have the loyalty of Samwise Gamgee.

If you could choose between a scrumptious second breakfast and a perilous unexpected journey – which would you prefer?

I'm getting better at it, but I'm still not comfortable with anything unexpected, so I'll take that second breakfast, please. 

Have you ever left behind something on a journey (expected or unexpected) and wished you could have it over and over again? (a pocket handkerchief?)

Oh yes. I still occasionally think about the camera I left behind in a Denny's during a family trip out west. We must've been pretty far away by the time I realized, because my Dad would not turn the station wagon around to retrieve it. It wasn't so much the camera that I longed for, but rather the black vinyl case decorated with a single pink puffy pony sticker---it had googly eyes and everything. 

What is your Favorite part or quote from the book that you hope will be in the movie?

Confession time: I don't actually remember any details of the book. I haven't read it since the 5th grade and yet I always cite The Hobbit as one of my favorite stories from childhood (right next to Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe). That's because I remember the absolute awe it evoked in me and how whenever I was away from the story, I couldn't wait to dive back in. So this is the perfect situation---I get to have my inner hobbit reawakened without being disappointed by any possible deviations from canon. 

~.~.~.~.~

And now for a cover reveal for a brand new series to immerse in...

Free Souls by Susan Kaye Quinn
(Book Three of the Mindjack Trilogy)
Now Available!
When your mind is a weapon, freedom comes at a price.
Congratulations to Susan on completing this very successful series of unique YA Paranormal reads. As you see by all the book cover below, she's been a busy lady. Visit Susan's website to learn more about the series and see the great reviews she's been getting---you can also ENTER TO WIN one of FIVE ecopies of the Mindjack Origins Collection.
All Mindjack stories available on Amazon, Barnes&Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, and iTunes (Note Free Souls is not yet available on iTunes)



Thanks for including me in your reveal, Susan, and thanks Mary & Tyrean for the fun fest! So when will you be seeing the movie?  I've already got my tickets for Sunday in the IMAX!  I typically don't brave opening weekends, but when my favorite hobbit enthusiast happens to be my 15-year-old son and he actually wants to see the movie with his mom---in public!---I'm not going to make him wait.

More Hobbit Blogfesters:

12.12.12

Inspiration

Look who's arrived at the second-to-last question for The Next Big Thing:

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

As I'm sure you all know, there's a difference between being inspired with a story idea and being inspired to invest the months and months it takes to write the thing out. We covered the inspiration behind the idea for Divine Temptation in my answer to question #2, but the credit for the inspiration to actually write it goes to my very good friend, the pre-reader I mentioned in my answer about first drafts.

The idea for the story was born before I knew him, but through his curiosity about this story in particular (he's also currently working on a very different kind of angel story) and his persistent interest in seeing more and more of my writing, he made me want to put this one into words. And he was there every step of the way to encourage me to continue until it was finished. Ya might say he's rather like my real life angel.



Speaking of inspiration...the Holidays Without Rules Kindle giveaway sponsored by Omnific Publishing inspired me to put together an 80s Christmas Mix, includes a bonus image of all Three Daves playing with their Christmas lights....




One more day left to enter to win an eBook of Three Daves at Kate Evangelista's 24 Days of Guest Posts and Giveaways



10.12.12

Cheers! To Alex J. Cavanaugh


Today's the day we make this kind and generous soul squirm.  But I'm not the evil one---it was all Mark “The Madman” Koopman, Marvelous” Morgan Shamy, Stephen “Breakthrough” Tremp & David “Kingpin” Powers King's  idea.
Let's get to this, shall we?


What does Alex look like?

I'm not sure why, but I'm betting heavy on mustache. 

Who could play Alex in a documentary?

Lenny Kravitz. With a mustache, of course.

Who does Alex remind you of?

Santa Claus.

Flash Fiction:
The Ninja crouches. He is alone, but far from lonely, for he's accompanied by the imagined classical guitar riff that he mentally jams to while biding his time. Waiting. Watching. There it is! He leaps into the Cosbolt and speeds to his target. As always, the spacecraft is first on the scene—comments are still at zero.

“Not for long,” he murmurs, his mustache twitching ever so slightly. He delivers a witty one-liner, maneuvers around the word verification, and is off to the next post. “IWSG!!!” His infamous battle cry reverberates throughout the blogosphere. He is victorious. He is…Cavanaugh.


Bonus:
Behind every good man is an excellent woman, ergo the mystery Mrs. Cavanaugh is one terrific lady. As for “sharing” Alex...speaking as someone who's come to appreciate my husband's away time, I'm thinking it's a win-win situation. Hehe.

Read more Cheers to Alex, who makes blogging more fun for all of us.


9.12.12

24 Days of Guest Posts & Giveaways

Whether you're having trouble getting into the Christmas spirit or are already fully Kris-Kringlefied, Kate Evangelista's blog is a great place to be. Since December 1, she's been posting Christmas-themed guest posts, and each one includes a giveaway! It's a marvelous way to stoke your festive fires in the weeks leading up to Christmas Eve---and you could end up with a whole bunch of gifts before Santa even makes his way down your chimney. 

My post is up at Kate's today, so please stop by to learn of the top 5 things on my Christmas wishlist.   

What's at the top of your list? 




6.12.12

Holidays Without Rules Kindles Full of Books

If you're here for IWSG, you can find that post below, and on your way down, you just might want to check out this super awesome Kindle Giveaway.  THREE Kindles, actually---each loaded up with a collection of Omnific Publishing books:  Season of Sweetness (YA Collection), Haunted Holidays (Paranormal Collection) and Holiday Hotness (Adult Contemporary Collection). Be sure to stop by the Omnific Publishing Blog for holiday-themed posts by the authors, a new one each day of the giveaway. I made an 80s Christmas Mix for the occasion.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Here are two authors featured in the Holiday Hotness Kindle--me with Marian Vere at the book signing for her debut novel, Once Upon a Second Chance, a modern day retelling of Jane Austen's Persuasion. 


5.12.12

Insecurity Goes Well with Cookies

I'm multi-tasking today and at the end of this post you'll get cookies!  First up is the monthly meeting of the Insecure Writers Support Group, brainchild of Mr. Alex J. Cavanaugh, whom we'll incidentally be roasting...I mean honoring...next week during the Cheers Cavanaugh Blogfest (brainchild of Mark Koopman, Morgan Shamy, Stephen Tremp, and David Powers King). Is not too late to get in on the fun.

My next The Next Big Thing question conveniently ties in w/ an insecurity, or really, more of a frustration: #8  What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I don't understand this question.  Don't we write because we have stories in us that no one else is telling?  So how then, am I supposed to identify a book that mine is like? If I'd found one like it, I would've just read that one instead of writing this one and saved myself a whole lot of time and trouble.

But when something's hot, people seem to just want more, more, more of the same. So although I don't understand this thirst for monotony, I'll soon have a new book to market and should probably come up with a short list of best-selling novels that I can twist into a comparison with mine. Help me out?  I'm looking for something that combines realistic, contemporary romance and women's fiction with supernatural elements and spirituality. Throw in some dark mystery too. Got anything?

Quinn's Cookie Exchange

To celebrate the release of Angela Felsted's novel, Chaste, she's hosting a cookie recipe exchange throughout December, and I'm honored to be one of the stops. Below is the beautiful book cover and intriguing blurb, then my recipe for three-ingredient shortrbread. That's right folks, only THREE ingredients.

When he steps into his physics class on the first day of senior year, Quinn Walker is too exhausted from staying up all night with his three-month-old nephew to deal with moral dilemmas. As a devout Mormon who has vowed to wait until marriage for sex, the last thing he needs is a very hot and very sexy Katarina Jackson as his physics partner. Regrettably, he has no choice.

Kat feels invisible in her mansion of a home six months after losing her older brother in a fatal car crash and will do anything to get her parents’ attention. Since her pastor father has no love for Quinn’s “fake” religion and her ex-boyfriend refuses to leave her alone, she makes an impulsive bet with her friends to seduce her holier-than-thou lab partner by Christmas.

Um, while you were reading about Angela's book, I got a sneaking feeling that I'd already shared that recipe, so I checked the Bueller...Bueller, and yep, I posted it last Christmas! Now you know: these are the only cookies I've made for, like, the last five years, ehe. But when you discover something this easy and this good, why bake anything else? They'll be the perfect thing to munch on while enjoying Angela's story.


 Congratulations, Angela!!!


28.11.12

And now back to The Next Big Thing...

Whoops, sorta got swept away in various blog hops & parties and the business of my non-e life and haven't answered a Next Big Thing question in a while. But I'm back at it and will continue to answer at least one a week until I've finally stuck a fork in this thing. As a refresher, I'm answering these questions in relation to my upcoming novel, Divine Temptation, scheduled for release in early 2013.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

6 months.  This story had been playing in my head for years, since well before Three Daves was ever published, but as you can gather from the opening paragraph of this post, I'm easily distracted, and so it took me a year and a half to recover from my squirreliness with the first novel and get serious about writing the second one.

When I decided it was time, I wrote a rough outline of the sequence of events and set a goal of writing out one chapter every weekend. The deal I made with myself was to just pound it out and move on to the next chapter the following weekend, no looking back (other than to check for consistency). I couldn't allow myself to start editing at this stage or I'd have never gotten the whole thing written.

Aha, but my secret weapon during this time was my trusted and talented friend who read each rough chapter as I wrote it and offered critiques and suggestions, which I filed away for the second draft. After letting the first draft cool for a few months, I was able to move through the second and third drafts fairly quickly---and I was relieved to discover that the story was a place in which I easily and happily re-immersed.

How closely does this resemble your writing process?  


12.11.12

Jousting...on the Internet!

I just love it when authors get creative with their release parties, and that's exactly what M. Pax has done with her latest release, The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear. She's celebrating with a jousting tournament and contest at www.mpaxauthor.com. Cheer for the knights to help them win the grand prize, and you’ll be put in a drawing to win an ebook copy of The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear. Five will be given away. Huzzah!


Let the Jousting begin!




A New Adult Urban Fantasy, The Renaissance of Hetty Locklear is the first book in a new series. And it’s now out! The main character, Hetty, is a twenty-two-year-old, stumbling about in an effort to become a full-fledged adult. She struggles with self-esteem, weight, relationships, and making the transition between college and the real world.

Graduation from community college isn’t the magic elixir Hetty Locklear counts on for becoming an adult. Her parents, who work the Renaissance fair circuit, insist she spend part of the summer with them. Hetty doubts pretending to live in the Middle Ages will help her find her way.

To make it worse, an entity haunts her at her dead-end job, warning her of a dangerous man she doesn’t know. The ghost leads her to a lover who has a lot of secrets. He pulls her farther into peril and into a strange, hidden world of genetic experimentation.



New Adult Urban Fantasy with a contemporary sci-fi twist. Mature content.

Available as an ebook at Amazon / Amazon UK / Smashwords / iTunes / Kobo
Visit www.mpaxauthor.com for more links.


7.11.12

IWSG: Feeling Squirrely

Thank you Alex, for this monthly opportunity to share our woes and garner much encouragement.  Hey!  I haven't told you yet, Big Al, but I mentioned you and IWSG in my interview in Insatiable Magazine. :)

My post this month builds off something I read in an earlier IWSG post by Allison over at Geek Banter: Why I Like Scrivener. I'd not heard of Scrivener before and was intrigued by Allison's account of how the writing software eased organization and navigation through manuscripts and manuscript-related documents. I've downloaded the program and am finding it to be a delightful way to get organized for my impending book release.

With my first novel, I had no idea what I was doing marketing-wise. When it was released to the world I was like...I was going to say a deer in the headlights, but that's not quite right.  I was more like a squirrel who jumps impetuously into the middle of the road and upon realizing he's in over his head, darts back and forth trying to do everything at once while meanwhile accomplishing nothing. I've been feeling good that at least with this second book, I'll be more experienced and therefore better prepared for the scary world of marketing, but on Monday my publisher gave me a tentative release date for Divine Temptation...and I'm starting to feel squirrely again. Too many ideas hitting me all at once, threatening to send me into a fluffy-tailed scurry of anti-productivity.  Enter Scrivener...

There's something very soothing about the folders and files that I can not only jump easily between, jotting down ideas in the proper place as they hit me---I can assign each document a little post-it note thingy so that I can view an entire board of related ideas at once.  And I can move them around as need be. I can't wait to use this software for writing and reworking my next novel! If you're interested in checking it out, Scrivener offers a free trial of thirty days of actual use.

Scrivener has helped me organize my thoughts well enough to have come up with a plan for involving my blog friends in the book release. :)  I know time is our most precious commodity and we get hit left and right with various blog activities, so my plan is simple and flexible so you can tailor your involvement to whatever works best for you & your blog or other social networks. Please visit this page for a brief explanation and to give me your e-mail and first born (teasing, teasing). Thanks!

 


5.11.12

I'm Thankful for My Readers Hop

Today Tara Tyler and Vikki are giving us an opportunity to thank our especially special readers in this lovely pre-Thanksgiving hop. 

The best thing anyone can do for a writer is to read what they've written; therefore, I'm grateful to anyone who's ever read anything I've ever written. And I'm especially grateful to those readers who take the time to let me know what they think, whether in person, through a private e-mail or in a public review at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, a blog, or all of the above. 

Life is busy, and sometimes the simplest things are the first ones to get brushed aside (don't I know it) so whether someone puts together a multi-paragraphed, thorough review or types out a couple sentences highlighting their overall thoughts on the story, I appreciate it so very much. 

One particular person I need to thank is someone who's real name I don't even know.  I only know her as ILoveNeville over at harrypotterfanfiction.net.  She was my very first reviewer---and for several chapters my only reviewer---on the first story I ever put out for public consumption, and despite my profuse thank yous after each review, I'm afraid she'll never know how truly much her enthusiasm meant to me.  At the time I didn't share my writing with anyone I knew real life, so her words gave me the validation I needed to know that I didn't suck and the encouragement to continue doing this thing I love so much. 

Speaking of little things that get brushed aside, this blog hop inspired me to finally tackle a certain pesky task as a teensy way to show my appreciation to readers.  I signed up at Authorgraph, so I can now provide free personalized e-signatures! The service is intended for e-readers, but it comes to your e-mail as a separate pdf, so even if you have paper copies of my books, you can print the Authorgraph & tuck it inside the book. All you have to do is visit my Authorgraph page and click the request button.   


Right then, time to read more heartwarming tales of writer/reader love at this Linky



1.11.12

Look! Winners!

First up, congratulations to these 5 winners of a Three Daves eBook from the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop! Thank you,thank you to everyone who played along.



Next up, I've been tagged by Jennifer Lane in U Got the Look (tell me you're not singing THIS in your head right now). This is how it works: take your current manuscript, search for the word “look,” and post the surrounding paragraphs. Lastly, tag 5 blogging authors.  Ready?  Here's my first instance of "look" in my upcoming novel, Divine Temptation

Maggie researched private schools in the area and presented the list to Carl. Although she and her ex--husband had attended Sunday Mass often enough to look respectable and dutifully fostered their children through the sacraments, Carl seemed surprised to see mostly Catholic schools on the list. “You do realize that divorced parents are going to be more a rarity at a parochial school than a public one, don’t you?” he cautioned.
“I can deal with the judgment of strangers” Maggie answered. “What I can’t take any more of is people who acted like my friends last year eyeballing me now like I’m a juicy piece of meat they can’t wait to tear into the second my back is turned.”
“You mean the way you looked at that mom after her, er, previous profession was exposed?”

She narrowed her eyes. “Fine. Maybe I deserve this. But…I just, I get such a strong feeling that this is the right thing to do.”
“Okay, as long as you don’t think switching schools is the ticket to a magical fairyland where all your troubles disappear.”
Maggie nodded and frowned, knowing he was right.
This time I'm not going to flake out on the tagging.  I hereby tag the following 5 bloggers with U Got the Look:


29.10.12

Monstrous Monday

Welcome to Monstrous Monday, hosted by Tim Brannan at The Other Side blog. The rules to this one are simple: talk about monsters. For my post, I've decided to tell you about the first monster to ever make me legitimately scared to walk outside at night...eh, daytime too if I'm being honest.

I was pretty young when I met this monster, young enough that I don't remember exactly how young, but I'm going to guess about 7ish. I'm fuzzy on memories from that age, but this one is fairly sharp. My family and I were visiting our old neighbors, the Taylors, at their new house in Hanover Park. We sat as a group in their family room watching a movie on TV:



Or "Son of Blob" as it was dubbed for its TV release.  My little heart started pounding the moment that woman inadvertently thawed the blob, thinking it was tomato sauce. The first victim, a fly. The second...



Nooooo!!!  With each kill the blob grew, as did my conviction that my parents should've never let me watch that movie. When the ordeal finally ended and it was time to go home, my courageous father went outside to warm the car---ALONE!  And everyone else acted like it was no big deal.  Hadn't they just witnessed the Blob's silent but deadly approach?  Didn't they see how its victims had no idea of the danger until they were hip deep in the unstoppable red ooze?  How could they sit there talking and laughing while my father was in mortal peril??

He came back in before I could work myself into anything more than a silent worry, and I was very happy to see him.  But it was a loooong time before I was comfortable being near a can of tomato paste again. I stayed wary of marinara until Kevin Dillon & Co. came along with this...



Come on, you knew I had to work in the 80s somehow. ;)  If you haven't seen this movie it's a pretty fun & funny retelling of the original Blob movie. What better way to face your fears than to laugh at them, right?

Now that we've conquered that monster, we've got lots more waiting for you in this Linky.

23.10.12

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop


That's right folks, it's here - one whole week of Spoooooktacular giveaways, hosted by I am a Reader, Not a Writer. Hop around this list of over 400 participants to win so many prizes, it's scary!

At my place, I'm giving away an eBook of my 80s chick lit/romance novel, Three Daves, to 5 winners. To enter, all you have to do is answer the very personal and revealing question in the Rafflecopter below (tweeting, liking & following are optional but will win you extra bats in the bellfry).

The answers coming in through the Rafflecopter are cracking me up! 

Neon sweatshirts. Definitely.

no mobile phones or internet.

big hair and mullets YECH!


You get the picture. Now...tell me your 80s fears...


And what do you get when you cross the retro 1980s
with the current zombie trend?

Thriller!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


22.10.12

Letting Go

To commemorate the release of Kyra Lennon's new novella, If I Let You Go, Kyra's hosting a bloghop in which we talk about our personal experiences with letting go. And to kick up the celebration a notch, today only, If I Let You Go is absolutely FREE in Kindle!

I didn't get past my 4th decade on this Earth without having had to let go of a lot of things. It's never easy, but the good news is, every heartache is given to us for a reason, to either teach us something or lead us somewhere better, even though it often doesn't feel that way at first (e.g. giant spiders in Lord of the Rings, remember?)

A change that proved pivotal for me, because it both taught me a lesson and led me to a better place, was when I had to let go of my beloved little house---the one where my babies were born, the one I Martha-Stewarted the bejeezus out of, the one I thought I'd never leave---to move my family out west.  I'm talking 1/2 hour west, practically straight down Roosevelt Road from one western Chicago 'burb to another. Pathetic, I know.

But it was a really, really tough decision for me. I'd firmly established myself in the miniature suburban Utopia of Glen Ellyn---how could I possibly be as happy in Batavia?  Well guess what, circumstances being what they were (the relative price of real estate, the me not working full time, the husband's freakish tallishness that proved incompatible with the quirkier areas of the home), the move I fought against happened, and the doughnut committee at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School just had to find itself a new chairwoman.  And I had to grow up and realize that the world wouldn't combust if things didn't go exactly the way I'd always foreseen them.

Because Someone Else foresees much better.  I see now that the move helped me shed some things I needed to shed, and it put my family in a corner of the world that's a much better fit for us.  I like this house we're in now. I like it a lot.  But I don't love it. I love the people who live here and the ones who visit and the experiences we have inside.  I'm in a better place.

Visit Kyra's blog for more participants. and don't forget, today only you can get If I Let You Go FREE on Kindle.


17.10.12

The Next Big Thing - Actors & Agencies

Today we resume The Next Big Thing, in which I answer questions about my current work in progress.  Since I skipped last week, I'll answer two questions today.

Question #4: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I hesitate to answer this question.  Y'see, when I read, I like to form my own picture of a person and I don't like it when I read something after the movie's been released, because then I can only picture those actors.  So I don't want to put pre-pictures in your heads and would rather have you form your own, okay?

Although...well, there is one character for whom I pictured a certain actor, so I suppose it wouldn't hurt to give you a peek at him.  This is Maggie's ex-husband, Carl Brock:

Richard Burgi.  Recognize him?  He's been on a bunch of TV shows, including Burn Notice, Chuck, Desperate Housewives, One Tree Hill, Castle, CSI: Miami, Harper's Island, NCIS, plus a bunch of shows I've never heard of before. You might say he's a prolific guest-appearer ...and I smile every time he shows up.

The reason he's perfect for Carl is because he carries a certain self-assurance, which can often crossover into arrogance, yet he's also got a big likeability factor, and deep down, I'm just sure he has a good heart. How could anyone with such mesmerizing eyes and such a strong jawline have anything but?

I answered question #5 a couple weeks ago, so now we skip to:

Question #6: Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I am very thankful to be represented by Omnific Publishing. Omnific is a small publishing house that was founded in 2009 with a motto of "Romance Without Rules." They are the publishing company that gave Three Daves a shot back in 2010, and I was very happy with the experience, so they were my first choice as publisher for Divine Temptation, and I was thrilled when they offered me a contract.


11.10.12

An Ode to WRiTE Club

We talk often in the blogverse about how supportive writers are of other writers, and it's true.  We're all very blessed to have found each other.  And then there are those who take it a step further and not only cheer us on, but give us a platform in which to share our writing and receive useful feedback. One such person is D.L. Hammons, who's turned his Cruising Altitude 2.0 blog into a stage for writers---or more accurately, a fighting ring.  But it's the friendliest fighting ring you'll ever see.

Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday D.L. pits two anonymous writing samples of under 500 words against each other and anyone who signs up on this linky gets to vote for the one that knocked them out.  We're also invited to offer constructive critiques of both pieces. It's a highly educational exercise just to scroll through the comments. 

So what does all this have to do with the Insatiable vixen above?  Welllll, I dusted off an old short story and polished a small sample to enter into the first iteration of WRiTE Club under the penname Art Gallery.  I made it to the final 6 and along the way received such positive feedback that I decided to give the rest of the 2,000 word story a fresh edit. I recently found a literary magazine that I thought would be a good fit aaaand---they agreed!  I'm ecstatic to announce that my short story, Impressionism 101, will be included in the debut issue of Insatiable Magazine, a new publication of White Cat Pubications.

I'm quite certain this piece would still be gathering dust if WRiTE Club hadn't sparked me with the desire to share it with a wider audience and if all the lovely commenters hadn't been so enthusiastic.  Thanks D.L. for all your hard work and to every single person who takes the time to read and comment on the entries. If you haven't participated in WRiTE Club yet, the door is always open (just remember to sign up at the linky).

***Regularly scheduled programming for The Next Big Thing will resume next week, in which I'll answer TWO questions to make up for skipping this week. Ooooooh***


9.10.12

Musician and Author, Jennifer DeLucy

Where to begin?  How about at The End? As in today is release day of the final book in the Light Series by Jennifer DeLucy:
Congratulations, Jennifer!

This is a truly lovely series by a truly lovely person and I can't imagine anyone who appreciates a realistic romance set amidst a paranormal backdrop of lingering spirits, dark astrals and malevolent creatures will be disappointed.  Here's my 5 star review, but don't take just my word for it, here's what A Life Bound by Books has to say:

"Her world and those that live in it are in a word, stunning."

The Beginning

As I said, this is the last book in the series, so if you haven't yet discovered the world DeLucy has created you now have a great opportunity to get started because for a very limited time, the first book, Seers of Light, is available for only 99 cents in Nook and Kindle.

Before the Beginning

If you jump on the new release right away and buy Circle of Light either today or tomorrow (Oct 9 &10) you'll get the short story prequel to the series, Glimpse of Light, absolutely FREE.  All you have to do is forward your e-mail receipt to publisher@omnificpublishing.com.


A New Beginning

As indicated by the title of this post, Jennifer DeLucy is also a talented musician.  She's written the music for all three of her book trailers and is now opening herself up to compose music for other authors. If you have a book trailer in your future and would like an original score for it, contact Jennifer. Visit her Reverbnation page for samples of her beautiful, inspiring music. 


3.10.12

IWSG & TNBT

Welcome Insecure Writers, and much thanks to our fearless leader, Alex J. Cavannaugh (insecure, sometimes; fearful, nevah!).

As my regular visitors know I've embarked on a quest for The Next Big Thing and am answering one question a week about my current work in progress, which happens to be in progress at a publisher. :)   I'm taking a question out of order this week because it fits perfectly with an insecurity of mine.

Question #5: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Are you kidding me???  One sentence?  Do you have any idea how long I struggled to reduce the thing into a 2-5 page synopsis?  And a 2-3 paragraph summary for the query? And even after all my work, I'm pretty sure the only reason that drivel made it beyond the acquisition editor's wastebasket is because I already had a relationship with the publisher.

So there it is, my insecurity: I suck at hooks and blurbs.  With a new book coming out---one I'm truly excited about---I've had lots of people ask,"so what's it about?" I respond, "Well, uh, there's this woman and then there's an angel.  And it's in the suburbs and she's divorced and...yeah...it's totally different from my last book." *apologetic shrug before changing the subject as quickly as possible*  How's that for the opposite of compelling?

Tell you what, I'll past the shortest version I've been able to come up with and if you can pare it down to one sentence, have at it.


Maggie Brock has everything under control.  Even her divorce, though painful at the time, only registers as a minor blip in her carefully constructed universe. Her life in Prairie Oaks has once again returned to a smooth, predictable pace…until an angel shows up in her bedroom.
The angel is just as bewildered as Maggie about why he’s been sent to her, but their unsuccessful efforts to gain understanding of the mystery fade to the background as their relationship grows. Soon, Maggie’s biggest problem becomes the angel himself, as her feelings for him develop into something less than saintly.
While Maggie struggles to keep her desires pure, a nefarious being lurks in the shadows of Prairie Oaks, watching and waiting for the opportunity to fulfill his ambiguous purpose. Preying on her conflicted emotions, the demon manipulates her at every opportunity, but the one to deliver Maggie directly into his hands is the last person she’d expect.

P.S. I'm wretchedly sorry for being so bad about bopping around the blogs lately.  I'm in the middle of a big project at work that I hooope will lighten up next week. 


27.9.12

Blogfest 2012


Welcome to Blogfest 2012, hosted by A Journey of Books.  It's all about hopping from blog to blog to widen your circle and WIN PRIZES!

Since September is Back-to-School month, I though it would be appropriate to help you build your library - the prize at my place is a collection of Omnific eBooks by authors whom I've featured here:

Contemporary Romance:
Indivisible by Jessica McQuinn
Three Daves by Yours Truly
With Good Behavior by Jennifer Lane

Paranormal Romance:
Seers of Light by Jennifer DeLucy
The Guardian's Wildchild by Feather Stone

Young Adult Paranormal Romance:
Breaking Point by Jess Bowen

To enter to win the collection, simply take the one-question "Pop Quiz" in the Rafflecopter below (the tweeting & following are optional but will earn you extra credit).

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Now, to keep this blogfest moving, please visit these awesome blogsters who are also hosting giveaways:

26.9.12

The Next Big Thing - Question #3

This is the third installment of The Next Big Thing.  To see what it's all about, see my first post on TNBT and let me know if you're in so that I can link to you on my future posts. My answers pertain to my upcoming novel Divine Temptation, to be released by Omnific Publishing in early 2013.  (This week I'm posting on Wednesday instead of Thursday because tomorrow I'll be getting ready for Blogfest 2012.)

Question #3:  What genre does your book fall under?

Paranormal Romance.  

Also, I think Women's Fiction would apply. Christian Lit is pushing it (as I don't believe in fading to black), but the story does have Biblical elements.  It's slightly Suspense too.

This is a departure from the Chick Litty feel of my first novel, Three Daves. What can I say? I don't write from a marketing perspective---I write the story I want to tell and that's not going to line up neatly into a consistent genre. But as I said in the press release:  What hasn’t changed is the realistic base of the storytelling. The type of paranormal stories I enjoy most are those in which the main character’s struggles are decidedly human. I like to think about how real people would react to unexpected elements suddenly being thrust into their lives, and that’s what I explored in DIVINE TEMPTATION.

Jennifer Lane is also posting her answers to TNBT questions every week.

So how about you---are you consistent in the genre you choose to write in?

How about the genre you read in?  If you like Romance, Omnific Publishing has just put a whole bunch o' titles on sale. 




20.9.12

The Next Big Thing - Question #2

This is the 2nd installment of THE NEXT BIG THING, a blog challenge in which we answer 10 questions about our current works in progress. The challenge was started by Gail Baugniet, and the idea is to answer one question each week and by that point have our WIPs moved on to the next phase.

I'm basing my answers on my upcoming novel, Divine Temptation (due out from Omnific Publishing in early 2013). By the end of the 10 weeks I hope to have  it through the meatiest part of the editing process. You can play along by either answering this week's question in the comments below or posting your answers at your own blog. See my first post on TNBT for the full set of questions.  Right then, ready for the second question?

Where did the idea come from for the book?

If I recall correctly...I was in the midst of reading too many Young Adult paranormal novels, and I thought it would be interesting to instead see how an adult woman---an experienced, mature, responsible, practical, somewhat jaded woman---would react to an otherworldly white knight suddenly inserting himself into her life. I'd also been wanting to write something that would make a comment on the current state of suburbia-as-I-see-it (influenced by Death by Suburb: How to Keep the  Suburbs from Killing Your Soul by David L. Goetz) and so the two ideas melded and from there the plot thickened.

Jennifer Lane is also answering these questions (she's the one who tagged me) so hop on over to her blog to see her weekly answers.  And L.G. Smith over at Bards and Prophets tackled the whole list of questions in one post.


17.9.12

Genre Favorites Blogfest



Welcome to the Genre Favorites Blogfest, hosted by the illustrious AJC.  Today we're going to fess up to our favorite genre in 3 categories plus a guilty pleasure.  Here are mine:



Movies

My gut answer is classic Romantic Comedy, like When Harry Met Sally, Four Weddings and a Funeral, and Notting Hill. But if we consult my favorite movies ever: Raiders of the Lost Ark, Pirates of the Caribbean (all of them), and Star Wars IV,V & VI, we can't ignore my thirst for Adventure.  



Music

Come on, who are you talking to here?  The answer to that would be 80s Alternative, like the Cure, Madness, INXS, The Clash, REM, etc, etc. etc, though I'm liking lots of current alternative bands as well, like Stone Sour, Hollywood Undead and Egypt Central




Books

Fantasy, with The Hobbit, all the Harry Potters, and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe being among my all time favorites. But I'm also a sucker for a Classic Romance, like Pride & Prejudice, Emma, and Gone with the Wind.



Guilty Pleasures
I...don't feel guilty about any of my pleasures. At least not in these genres.  If we were talking TV, however, I'd be forced to admit my unhealthy relationship with The Bachelor.  I try not to watch, really I do, but that Chris Harrison is wiley I tell ya, and he always seems to find some way of pulling me back in.


Now, get ye to the Blogfest List so you can keep hopping.

14.9.12

Cover Reveal: Fireblood by Trisha Wolfe

Cover reveals might just be my most favorite part of the whole publishing biz, and today I get to host my very first. And it's extra cool because its for the awesome YA author, Trisha Wolfe, who you might know from her debut novel earlier this year: Destiny's Fire.

Right then, shall I stop babbling and show you the cover already?


Fireblood: Fireblood #1
Release Date: 2013
From Spencer Hill Press

To save a kingdom, Zara must choose between a prince who could be the answer and a rising rebellion that threatens to take control.

When Zara Dane is chosen to marry Prince Sebastian Hart, son of the man who ordered her father’s capture, Zara knows she must fight to save everything she loves from ruin.

Being betrothed to the prince means a life trapped behind the towering stone walls of the Camelot-forged realm. Under the watchful eye of the prince's first knight, Sir Devlan Capra, changing her future becomes difficult.

When an unlikely rebel reveals the truth about the deadly secrets that fuel King Hart’s twisted world, Zara’s path to rescue her father becomes clouded by deception. The Rebels clear her path by forcing Zara’s hand with an ultimatum: sway Prince Sebastian to join the Rebels, convincing him of his father’s evil nature, or they will take him out.

But Zara is uncertain about a future under the Rebels’ command and where the prince’s heart truly lies. She must decide who to trust, what to believe, and what she’s truly fighting for before the king destroys all of Karm, including her heart.



About the Author
I’m the author of the YA Steampunk/Paranormal Romance DESTINY'S FIRE (Omnific Publishing) and the upcoming YA Sci-Fi Utopian FIREBLOOD from Spencer Hill Press, November 2013. My published short stories have appeared in YA literary journals, Fantasy magazines, and anthologies. I’ve written four books in the past two years, and I’m currently working on a new YA Sci-Fi project.

I’m the creator of YA Bound, a promotional blog for the Young Adult genre.  Also a proud member of YALITCHAT.ORGSCWW, and The Apocalypsies. And I’m also a business owner, partnered with my partner, my husband. When I’m not busy doing all of the above, I’m a wife and the mother of a gorgeous teen boy who's the sounding board for my male characters.

Check out my website TrishaWolfe.com for more on my books and short stories. Follow me on Twitter @TrishWolfe


And now for a special bonus:
A video that chronicals the photoshoot for the cover.

 

13.9.12

The Next Big Thing - Question #1

I've been tagged by Jennifer Lane in THE NEXT BIG THING blog challenge to answer 10 questions about my current work in progress. The challenge was started by Gail Baugniet, and the idea is to answer one question each week and by that point have your WIP moved on to the next phase. I'll base my answers on my novel that was recently accepted for publication by Omnific Publishing.  By the end of the 10 weeks I hope to have  it through the meatiest part of the editing process.  Okay, first question...

1. What is the working title of your book?

Divine Temptation

How does that strike you?  This one didn't come easy for me. Do you remember way back when I first started thinking of titles and threw out three (horrible) options?  With the help of a few friends & experts, we came up with this one and I like it much, much better, and I hope you do too.   
Apparently I'm not the only author to have trouble picking a title.  Jane Austen's original title for  Pride and Prejudice was First Impressions, and did you know Twilight author Stephenie Meyer wanted to call that first book Forks?  And can we talk about J.K. Rowling's upcoming adult novel---The Casual Vacancy? Is it just me, or is that a really awful title? But then, I guess she can call her books whatever the heck she wants.

Part of The Next Big Thing is to tag 5 other bloggers, but it stresses me out to much to have to pick only 5 of you, so I'd like each of you to answer the weekly question in the comments below.  Or if you'd like to answer these questions at your own blog on your own schedule, below is a list of the upcoming questions so you can take them & run with 'em.  I'll be answering my questions on Thursdays, so if you want to commit to the same, let me know and I'll link to your blog in future posts so others can read your answers.

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?
3. What genre does your book fall under?
4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
6. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
8. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
9. Who or What inspired you to write this book?
10. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Also, if you're looking for bloghops happening September & October, scroll down a bit on my sidebar for four fun ones.