Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wednesday's Writing Update: August Goals / Smashwords July Sale / Untethered Realms Giveaway

Happy Wednesday! And although you don't know them, a very happy birthday to my dad and anniversary to my mom and dad!

July has been a busy month. I'm making slow progress with Remarked, which I hope to finish by the end of August, and I've been editing the short stories in the forthcoming People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors as well as re-editing/reformatting my A to Z Flashes of Foxwick. I'm also getting close to finishing my outline for Reforged.

Here are my goals for August:
  • Edit one short story a week in People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors. I've been working on these stories, and I hope to finish my final edits by mid-September.
  • Write/Edit Remarked. I've been writing by hand the first draft of Remarked, which I still hope to finish by mid-August. Then, I'll be typing up the draft and doing an edit on it, so I can send this novella to my alpha readers in September.
  • Write in Reforged. I'd like to start writing Reforged, the second book in The Fate Challenges series.
And that's it. There's a lot to do, but I hope to continue making progress.

Also you will notice a slight change in my words written. Since I am writing by hand new drafts, I'm guessing on the word count. I'll update the official word count when I have the second draft typed up.

What are your August goals?

2014 Stats
32,843 + 1900 Words Written
1766 Pages Edited
*Stats taken from 1/1/2014-7/22/2014*


Smashwords is having its annual Summer/Winter sale. You can purchase RebornGravity: The Complete Trilogy, and The Nightmare Collection for 50% off their retail prices with coupon code SSW50. The sale ends July 31st.


We authors of Untethered Realms are celebrating reaching 100 GFC followers on our blog by having a grand prize giveaway of several of our ebooks.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Kyra Lennon's Sidelined Blog Tour / Bookworm News / Wattpad Wednesdays: Reborn Chapter 5 / Smashwords July Sale

Hello, friends of Cherie! Thanks to Cherie for letting me swing by for the Sidelined blog tour!

Today I am here to answer the question Cherie posed for me: - “I love how sports are featured in your Game On series books. What made you decide to include football (aka soccer) in the books? Did you used to play the sport?”

When I first came up with the idea for Game On, I needed a profession for my leading male, Radeigh McCoy, that was in the public eye. He needed to be someone everyone knew, someone who was used to getting what he wanted, and someone who had a lot to lose if one of his mistakes was ever discovered. I felt like the movie star thing has been overdone (some will probably say that soccer stars have, too lol!) so I decided to go with a sports star. I am not the biggest sports fan in the world – not gonna lie. The only sport I have any knowledge of is football (soccer, for my American friends!). I love the game, I know how it’s played, and because the entire US soccer league in the story is my own creation, I have the freedom to make up anything I’m unsure of. :D

As for playing football. Not so much. I definitely don’t play anymore, but when I was at school, I played occasionally. I was a kickass goal keeper, and one time I almost broke my fingers saving a goal lol! I was inexperienced – I had NO clue how freaking hard footballs are when they’re flying through the air at you, and I wasn’t trained in punching footballs to keep them out of the goal. That experience explained why PROPER goalkeepers wear gloves!

Blurb: At the age of twenty-one, Bree Collinson has more than she ever dreamed of. A handsome husband, a fancy house, and more shoes than Carrie Bradshaw and Imelda Marcos combined. But having everything handed to her isn’t the way Bree wants to live the rest of her life. When an idea to better herself pops into her head, she doesn’t expect her husband to question her, and keep her tied by her apron strings to the kitchen.

Isolated and unsure who to turn to, Bree finds herself falling back into a dangerous friendship, and developing feelings for the only person who really listens to her. Torn between her loyalty to her husband and her attraction to a man who has the perfect family she always wanted, she has some tough choices to make.

While Bree tries to figure out what she wants, a tragedy rocks the Westberg Warriors, triggering some dark memories, and pushing her to take a look at what’s really important.


About the Author:


Kyra is a self-confessed book-a-holic, and has been since she first learned to read. When she's not reading, you'll usually find her hanging out in coffee shops with her trusty laptop and/or her friends, or girling it up at the nearest shopping mall.

Kyra grew up on the South Coast of England and refuses to move away from the seaside which provides massive inspiration for her novels. Her debut novel, Game On (New Adult Contemporary Romance), was released in July 2012, and she scored her first Amazon Top 20 listing with her New Adult novella, If I Let You Go.


a Rafflecopter giveaway
 

BOOKS READ

The Trouble with Flying by Rachel Morgan
Minstrel's Serenade by Aubrie Dionne
The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
Bones Never Lie by Kathy Reichs
One Kick by Chelsea Cain

BOOKS REVIEWED

The Trouble with Flying by Rachel Morgan
Sarah's worst nightmare, a cute stranger who wants to talk to her, is about to sit beside her on a long flight from England to South Africa in Rachel Morgan's The Trouble with Flying. Oh my goodness, I loved this book. Sarah is so adorably awkward and shy, and I could easily relate to her. Aiden is hot and weird in his own way. I anxiously awaited to see how these two could possibly meet each other again after their flight. Set against the exotic backdrop of South Africa, this story is an endearing read. I laughed, cringed at Sarah's awkwardness because I totally got it, and teared up at the book's sweetness. I really want to try Zoo Biscuits now too. If you're looking for a clean, new adult romance, then look no further. I was completely engrossed in the story and couldn't get to the next screen page on my Kindle fast enough to know what happened next. The Trouble with Flying by Rachel Morgan is one of my favorite reads this year!

Minstrel's Serenade by Aubrie Dionne
Danika Rubystone must choose between her duty and her heart in Aubrie Dionne's Minstrel's Serenade. The fast-paced action keeps the reader on edge. This fantasy romance novel has rich world-building set against amazing settings, many fraught with danger. Danika is a strong character, although her bouts of wishywashyness made me not always like her. My favorite characters were Bron, Chief of Arms of Ebonvale, and Nip, a child who'd survived a wyvern attack. The wyverns are a worthy foe for the people of this land. The House of Song was a magical place, and I would love to live there, although some quiet every once in a while would be nice too. I would have liked to have seen a bit more of the land and the people, so Ebonvale and the House of Songs' quest would've been a touch more powerful. Overall, Minstrel's Serenade by Aubrie Dionne is a beautiful fantasy novel with smoldering romance at its core.

The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
Waxillium brought justice to the Roughs, but can he do the same for the city in Brandon Sanderson's The Alloy of Law? Set over three hundreds years after the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial has modernized with its horseless carriages and the invention of electricity. Sanderson introduces the idea of twinborns, those with an Allomancy skill and a Feruchemy skill. I love the Wild West meets Victorian England feel to this novel. Lord Waxillium, his friend and partner Wayne, and the intelligent Lady Marasi are characters anyone could root for. The enemy in the Vanishers is very real, their threats immediate. The story hooked me from page one and didn't want to let me go even at the end. I found this story also to be faster paced than the previous Mistborn books, and I do hope there will be more of Wax, Wayne, and Marasi in the future. If you enjoyed the Mistborn trilogy, then you'll love The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson.

Bones Never Lie by Kathy Reichs
A criminal from the past taunts Temperance Brennan and brings the crime scene too close to home in Kathy Reichs's Bones Never Lie. As a fan of Reichs's work and a watcher of Bones, I'm ashamed to admit it has been a few years since I've read a Temperance Brennan novel, so when I had the opportunity to read an early review copy, I jumped at the chance. This book does not disappoint. I love how this case involved an earlier case (the one from Reichs's Monday Mourning), which I had previously read and recommend reading before Bones Never Lie. Reichs does a fantastic job at filtering in backstory to keep the reader updated on the relevant events that'd gone before. The characters come to life in the action-packed story. I was hooked from the very start! Although I figured out the murderer earlier on, I enjoyed reading to see if I was right. Reichs' writing is immediate and well paced. I highly recommend this book. You'll want to hold on and don't forget to breathe while reading Bones Never Lie by Kathy Reichs.

One Kick by Chelsea Cain
Kick Lannigan delves into the past to save a child missing in Chelsea Cain's One Kick. As a fan of Cain's Gretchen Lowell/Archie Sheridan series, I was excited to hear of her new series. Kick is damaged goods after being kidnapped as a young child, but she has an inner strength that's easy to admire. She never wants to be the victim again. The mystery of Bishop intrigues me. I never quite knew whether or not to trust him. This novel keeps a reader guessing and is not as gritty as Cain's other series. The story twisted my stomach in knots as Cain delves into kidnapping and child pornography and the victims it leaves behind. I rooted for the criminals to be caught. One Kick by Chelsea Cain is a gripping must read. And I recommend not starting this one until you have a few hours to finish the book because once you start, you won't want to stop. I'm looking forward to the next Kick Lannigan book!

COVER REVEALS


I love Jenn's cover, but then again, I'm usually sold when there is purple.
Tiva Boon: Royal Guardian by Jenn Nixon
SciFi-Fantasy
From Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing
July 10 2014
@jennnixon
BOOKS RELEASED

The Butcher by Jennifer Hillier
Tiva Boon: Royal Guardian by Jenn Nixon
Conversion by Katherine Howe
The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron
Go Away Home by Carol Bodensteiner
The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg
Half a King by Joe Abercrombie
Tales of the Hidden World by Simon R. Green
Desolation Angels by James Axler
Supreme Justice by Max Allan Collins
The Last Town by Blake Crouch
A Test of Loyalty by Jack Lewis Baillot
The Wolf by Lorenzo Carcaterra
Don’t Talk to Strangers by Amanda Kyle Williams
Welcome to the Dark House by Laurie Stolarz
Forty Acres by Dwayne Alexander Smith
Games Divas Play by Angela Burt-Murray
Elemental Release by Elana Johnson
Uriel’s Fall by Loralie Hall
Heart and Soul by Lee Strauss
Effigy by M.J. Fifield
Salem's Vengeance by Aaron Galvin
Second Daughter by Susan Kaye Quinn

Today's the third Wednesday of the month, so it's time to put up another chapter of Reborn on Wattpad. You can click here to start at the beginning or click here for Chapter Five.


Smashwords is having its annual Summer/Winter sale. You can purchase RebornGravity: The Complete Trilogy, and The Nightmare Collection for 50% off their retail prices with coupon code SSW50. The sale ends July 31st.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Book Chat: T. Michelle Nelson Talks About the Fascination with Vampires / Smashwords July Sale

For today's Book Chat, T. Michelle Nelson is talking about vampires and her fascination with them. Death Warmed Over, book three in her Lily Drake series, is now available.

THE FASCINATION WITH VAMPIRES

Last year I spoke at a conference about the fascination so many of us have with vampires and the evolution of the vampire in literature.  Vampires are incredibly easy to glamorize and romanticize.

Of course, there's that sense of danger.  No woman wants to be bored, and vampires don't have mortal vulnerabilities.  However, in my opinion, the vampire is the paranormal creature of choice for one reason alone.  Eternal youth.

As I get older, this concept becomes more and more attractive.  I went out last week to one of my favorite restaurants, which is owned by a friend, and my waiter appeared to be around 17.  I asked the owner how old my server was, and to my dismay he was actually a year older than the fake age I use.  I apparently have forgotten completely what 22 actually looks like.

What I would give to be eternally 25 years old, healthy and have that twenty-something metabolism.  Yet another huge reason I'd love to be vampire - I could eat without the guilt.  I love food.  Tasty food.  You know, with fat, carbs and calories.  Unfortunately I rarely enjoy that type of food because my almost forty year old body renders fat faster than a sauté pan full of bacon on high heat.

I'd make a great vampire.  I'd appreciate so much - the halting of the cruel aging process, good health, and immortality.  But should vampires turn out to be real and are actually reading this... give me a couple weeks before you turn me.  I've got five pounds of winter weight I'd like to get rid of before I'm stuck with it throughout eternity.

In the conclusion of the Lily Drake series, Lily must choose not only what is best for herself and her son, but for her people.  Her sword will be stained with blood through her efforts to preserve the lives of the people she loves, but she won’t be able to save them all.   

When a devastating loss crushes her will to live, can Lily go on and be the leader she has to be?  What is she willing to sacrifice to save others?

Death comes to everyone...even the Queen’s house...

What doesn't kill you will make you wish it did...

To Purchase: Amazon / Nook

Add on Goodreads here.


T. Michelle Nelson became enamored with vampires at an early age when she watched George Hamilton in “Love at First Bite.” As she got older, her tastes leaned more toward the dark and morose, but her love of all things vampire never wavered.  Little has changed over the years, except now T.  makes up her own macabre stories of the undead… mixed with a splash of romance, tough heroines and tons of dark humor.

T. Michelle Nelson is a native of Benton, Kentucky and a graduate of Murray State University.  Currently she resides in a small town in Ohio, which is also the setting of her Lily Drake series.  The first two books in the series, Life and Death of Lily Drake and 'Til Death Do Us Part, are currently available at Barnes and Noble, Amazon or any of your other favorite online bookstores. A short story prequel The First Time is also available. Death Warmed Over, the third and final book of the series will release in late June.

When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her spending time with her son, singing out of key, watching B-Horror movies or discussing world problems with her little dog, Toadie.

Website / Facebook / Twitter


Smashwords is having its annual Summer/Winter sale. You can purchase RebornGravity: The Complete Trilogy, and The Nightmare Collection for 50% off their retail prices with coupon code SSW50. The sale ends July 31st.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

IWSG: Ransonware and Backing Up Your Work / Wattpad Wednesdays: Reborn Chapter Four / Smashwords July Sale



It's time for another Insecure Writer's Support Group meeting. IWSG was created by the awesome ninja captain Alex J. Cavanaugh, and you can find out the other members of the group here. A special thanks to July's co-hosts: Krista McLaughlin, Kim Van Sickler, Heather Gardner, and Hart Johnson! 
On June 5th, a writer's worst fear happened to me.

It started out a normal day. I came in, started my work computer, did a bit of work, and then finished my work emails. I had an email from someone in the building about a fax. Thinking that perhaps a fax had come there instead of the library, I clicked on the Dropbox link.

A little later, I opened up my writing folder on my USB drive. Some strange files were showing up in it. I clicked one of my blog tour files.

Nothing.

I clicked on the strange file that had shown up.

I thought I was going to be sick.

I was struck my ransonware. RSA-2048 to be exact. Basically, I had so much time to pay the ransomers for the decryption codes or my files would remain encrypted forever. I started researching rapidly for a solution. Almost every single .doc, .pdf, and .jpeg were affected in my writing folder. I found a way to get rid of the malware, but my files will remain encrypted until someone comes up with a decryption code.

Worst of all, it had been awhile since I'd backed up my work. Like months on one flash drive and a year or more for the other. *gulps*

Taking stock of what I still had, I realized I had lost my newest outline of Reforged, my outlines for Repledged, Remarked, and Redestined, and the first three chapters of Remarked and the first two chapters of Repledged. I'm sure there are other things I'll miss, but those are the worst of what happened.

So I feel lucky. I maybe lost 20,000 words or so of work and a few pictures I'll have to recreate. I've lost time. But I didn't lose anything I couldn't redo. I lucked out.

I'm now backing up my work in multiple places. Every. Single. Day.

It sucks, but we persevere. And I know what I recreate will be even better than the original.

Have you backed up your files today?


Today's the first Wednesday of the month, so it's time to put up another chapter of Reborn on Wattpad. You can click here to start at the beginning or click here for Chapter Four.

By the way, I'm off work for the rest of the week, so I apologize that I'll be slow in commenting back. Have a good Independence Day to those in the States.


Smashwords is having its annual Summer/Winter sale. You can purchase Reborn, Gravity: The Complete Trilogy, and The Nightmare Collection for 50% off their retail prices with coupon code SSW50. The sale ends July 31st.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Writing Update: July Goals / Reborn Blog Tour Winner / My Writing Process

Happy Wednesday! I survived the Reborn blog tour, and I have your grand prize winner. Congrats! And thank you so much for making the blog tour spectacular! I think I visited well over one hundred individual bloggers during the tour, and Reborn has thirteen reviews on Amazon (eleven of them five stars!).



And if you missed any tidbits of information about Reborn, I have them all up on my website.

June has been a busy month with the blog tour, my cat being sick (bladder crystals again), and an incident I'll talk about further during next week's IWSG. It's made writing rather difficult this month, and I've been re-evaluating my writing goals.

Almost everyone who has read Reborn is looking forward to the next book, but the next story I'd been planning to write wasn't in Yssa's timeline. It got me thinking. Would my audience rather have the next part of Yssa's tale (Remarked, a novella told from Liam's POV) or a story (Repledged) within the Amoran world but taking place 800 years before Reborn? I figured they'd want to continue Yssa's story, so I am breaking off Repledged and the other prequel Reigned into their own series (The Royal Challenges), which features Deliah's story, Magna's story (Repledged), and Reza's story (Reigned). By writing the new outline for Repledged, I also learned about the stories of the other Phoenix Prophetesses, so I'd like at some point to write The Prophetess Challenges, featuring Amora's story, Gwendolith's story, and Carys's story. Of course, I'm planning to work on The God Challenges after The Fate Challenges and then I'll get to the other standalone tales within those two new series.

So that said, here are my July goals:
  • Edit two short stories a week in People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors. I was supposed to work on this some in June, but I really needed a break from editing. So now my goal is to finish the final edit by the end of August, so I can start proofreading and formatting for the print proof in September.
  • Write Remarked. I'm hoping to finish this novella told from Liam's point of view by the end of the month.
And I hope to take a slight breather next month too for a few days around the July 4th holiday. The blog schedule will also be going back to normal with just Wednesday posts.

2014 Stats
26,864 Words Written
1672 Pages Edited
*Stats taken from 1/1/2014-6/24/2014*


Stephanie Faris tagged me in the Four Questions on Writing blog hop.

To participate, you just answer four questions about your writing process and tag three more people. Here we go!

What am I working on/writing?

I’m finishing up my outline of Remarked, Book 1.5 of The Fate Challenges, so I hope to start writing this novella from Liam’s point of view in July.

How does my work/writing differ from others in its genre?

That’s a really good question. I tend to pull a lot from mythology for my work, and although I do my best to make my characters relatable and three dimensional, I also like to filter in as much world-building as possible without bogging the story down. For me, my worlds are just as real as the people in them.

Why do I write what I do?

I read a variety of genres from horror and mysteries to fantasy and romance. My writing often reflects what I read. I have genre-hopped a bit, although I must admit I love writing fantasy the most. In the end, I just have all these people and places and stories in my head. They need a place to exist, so I’ll write down their tales.

How does my writing process work?

I have an idea. That idea will roll around in my mind, picking up characters, scenes, and world-building. Ideas often dwell in my brain at least six months, but some are up there for years. When I’m ready to work on a project, I’ll write the outline. Once the outline is complete, I’m ready to write the first draft. I do sometimes go back over what I’d written while drafting to add details and make minor changes. Sometimes I’ll get to a point, usually at the third-way mark, where I finally understand my main character better and will go back and fix the beginning and continue to the end.

Now it’s time to tag. I’m terrible at this and don’t like to tag people who’ve already been tagged before, so if you’d like to answer the questions, go ahead!

Monday, June 23, 2014

M.J. Fifield's Effigy Cover Reveal / Last Day of the Reborn Blog Tour and Giveaway

M.J. Fifield's debut novel Effigy is coming out next month, and I'm participating in her cover reveal. Isn't it a gorgeous cover?


The survival of a once-mighty kingdom rests in the hands of its young queen, Haleine Coileáin, as it slowly succumbs to an ancient evil fueled by her husband’s cruelty.

A sadistic man with a talent for torture and a taste for murder, he is determined to burn the land and all souls within. Haleine is determined to save her kingdom and, after a chance encounter, joins forces with the leader of the people’s rebellion. She gives him her support, soon followed by her heart.

Loving him is inadvertent but becomes as natural and necessary as breathing. She lies and steals on his behalf, doing anything she can to further their cause. She compromises beliefs held all her life, for what life will exist if evil prevails?

Her journey leads to a deceiving world of magic, monsters, and gods she never believed existed outside of myth. The deeper she goes, the more her soul is stripped away, but she continues on, desperate to see her quest complete. If she can bring her husband to ruin and save her people, any sacrifice is worth the price—even if it means her life.

Release date: July 22, 2014 
Cover art by Ravven
Add Effigy to your Goodreads to-read list

Armed with a deep and lasting love of chocolate, purple pens, and medieval weaponry, M.J. Fifield is nothing if not a uniquely supplied insomniac. When she isn’t writing, she’s on the hunt for oversized baked goods or shiny new daggers. M.J. lives with a variety of furry creatures—mostly pets—in New Hampshire. Effigy is her first novel.

For more information about M.J., please visit her website and blog.


Wow! It's hard to believe a month ago Reborn officially debuted and the blog tour started. Here is where I'm at today:


Christine Rains' blog for an exclusive interview with the god Apenth
Stephen Tremp's blog talking about magical theory in the Kingdom of Amora

Today's Reborn tidbit: The Prophecy of Sólfœra comes from the Norvadians (Great Beyonders) and was one of the last world-building aspects I added to Reborn during the final edit and has taken a life of its own. More about the prophecy will be addressed in Remarked, Book 1.5 of The Fate Challenges, and will feature prominently in the prequel novel of The Gods Challenges, a sequel trilogy of The Fate Challenges, I hope to publish in 2017.


The authors of Untethered Realms and I are giving away over $50 worth of books to one lucky winner. The giveaway is open internationally. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, June 20, 2014

Reborn Blog Tour

Today I am at these places:


Nick Wilford's blog with an interview
Christine Rains' blog with a review of Reborn

Today's Reborn tidbit: Royals are descended from Phoenix-Queen Amora and the god Apenth’s joining. These people have magical powers, but they don’t have access to these abilities until their eighteenth birthdays. In Luquiry, all new eighteen-year-old Royals attend Magna’s School of Sorcery, where they learn how to control and use their magic. The school was founded in 1750 by Queen Magna—the same one from the short story Magna’s Plea and the longer version Repledged I’m working on—and was one of the queen’s first acts at taking over the throne from her deceased mother Queen Vyvian.



The authors of Untethered Realms and I are giving away over $50 worth of books to one lucky winner. The giveaway is open internationally.



Goodreads Book Giveaway

Reborn by Cherie Reich

Reborn

by Cherie Reich

Giveaway ends June 23, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win