Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Bookworm News / Writing Update: January Goals / Wattpad Wednesdays: Reborn Chapter 15


BOOKS READ

The Initiate by M. Pax
Hellsbane Hereafter by Paige Cuccaro
The Trouble with Faking by Rachel Morgan
Vitamins and Death by Medeia Sharif

BOOK REVIEWS

The Initiate by M. Pax

Saving the world is more complicated than it looks for Daelin and Earl in M. Pax's The Initiate. This book picks up where The Rifters leaves off. Daelin, an Initiate in the Rifters, must learn lesson number one, if she has a hope to help her sister and their world. Daelin grows a lot in this book, and she's quickly become one of my favorite characters. Earl must atone for his past before he can focus on his future. I enjoyed learning more about Earl. A few more questions are answered and more mysteries abound in this series. Pax has created quite the adventure here, and I can't wait for the next book! For a fast-paced thrilling novel filled with strange creatures, fascinating inventions, and unique characters, look no further than The Initiate by M. Pax.

Hellsbane Hereafter by Paige Cuccaro
Emma Jane Hellsbane must choose between Heaven, Hell, or something all her making in Paige Cuccaro's Hellsbane Hereafter. I've been a big fan of Emma Jane since reading the prequel novella Commencement. It took me a little while to get into this book since it's been so long since I've read book two, but once I got into it a bit and remembered who was who and the like, I didn't want to put the book down. Emma Jane is strong and pretty badass, but Cuccaro really forces Emma Jane to grow in this last book of the series. We see new characters, old characters, and the return of characters we haven't seen since the prequel novella. My favorite thing about this series is no one seems completely good or evil. There are so many shades of gray, even among angels, the Fallen, and demons. The ending is really perfect for the series as well. I highly recommend Paige Cuccaro's Hellsbane series and Hellsbane Hereafter doesn't disappoint!

The Trouble with Faking by Rachel Morgan
Andi has longed for the boy next door for years, but can she finally make him fall for her in Rachel Morgan's The Trouble with FakingMorgan packs some powerful twists and turns into this novel. Andi has been one of my favorite characters of the series. She's quirky and confident and bold on the outside, yet she hides who she is and what she feels from almost everyone, even herself. I wish I could be friends with Andi in real life. She's so cool with her book reviews on YouTube and the stuff she crafts on Etsy. She gets into complicated situations, which almost ruin everything. I enjoyed the sweetness of a school girl crush between her and Damien and loved the interaction between her and Damien's best friend. I love how Morgan has set this series in South Africa where she lives. It's exotic at times and so normal at others. The Trouble with Faking by Rachel Morgan is a great addition to the Trouble series. I'm looking forward to the next book!

Vitamins and Death by Medeia Sharif
Deidra's mother screwed up, yet it is Deidra who almost pays the ultimate price in Medeia Sharif's Vitamins and Death. The stigma of being the daughter of a teacher who slept with a student haunts Deidra and follows her mother and her to their new high school. This novel is emotionally hard to read. Many times I wanted to shake or slap Deidra's mom. She needed to woman-up and become an adult for her daughter. Deidra has the potential for a promising future, and I craved that for her. Her growth and how she comes out of her depression is the shining light in this story. I loved her growing relationship with Malcolm too. Children don't have to be their parents, and this book displays that so well. Medeia Sharif has written a heartbreaking, gut-punching, and edgy book. Vitamins and Death is not light, fun reading, but I recommend it.

BOOK PROMO

VITAMINS AND DEATH, Prizm Books/Torquere Press, December 10, 2014

Purchase from Prizm, Amazon – Vendor sites will be updated on the author’s site.

Deidra Battle wants nothing more than to be invisible. After her mother, a public school teacher, engages in an embarrassing teacher-student affair at Lincoln High, they relocate to a different neighborhood and school. Being her mother's briefcase, Deidra joins her mother at her new workplace, Hodge High. Since her mother has reverted to her maiden name and changed her appearance, she thinks no one will figure out they're the Battles from recent news and that they're safe. Neither of them is. Hodge brings a fresh set of bullies who discover details about the scandal that changed Deidra's life. Feeling trapped at home with an emotionally abusive, pill-addicted mother and at school with hostile classmates who attempt to assault and blackmail her, Deidra yearns for freedom, even if she has to act out of character and hurt others in the process. Freedom comes at a price.


Find Medeia – YA and MG Author

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BOOKS RELEASED IN DECEMBER

Vitamins and Death by Medeia Sharif
Sleeping Jenny by Aubrie Dionne
People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors by Cherie Reich
Marriage to Measure by Talli Roland
Fantasy Uprising by Untethered Realms authors
The Trouble with Faking by Rachel Morgan
Across the Ages by RaShelle Workman
 The Insecure Writers Support Group Guide to Publishing and Beyond by IWSG authors
Debt Collector Season Two by Susan Kaye Quinn
Hellsbane Hereafter by Paige Cuccaro


Happy Wednesday! I can't believe the year is almost over already! How did that happen?

My December goal to work on Once upon a Nightmare didn't really happen. I should've remembered that December is a very busy work month. But I do have two weeks off from work and hope to come back in January refreshed and ready to get to work on my 2015 goals.

Want to know how Foxwick came to be? I'm talking about the inspiration behind the Kingdom of Foxwick on Christine Rains' blog.

If you're in the Roanoke, VA area, Liz Long and I will be signing books at Paperback Phoenix on Saturday, December 20 from 1 PM - 3 PM, weather permitting, which at the moment doesn't look quite as promising as I'd like.

Here are my goals in January:
  • Once upon a Nightmare: A Collection - I hope to publish the second edition of this collection by March. It might take me a little more time to get the money for the new cover, which is why it might take longer to publish.
  • Marked - Originally titled Remarked, I hope to start back to writing this novella told from Liam's POV in January.
Are you ready for the new year? What are your January goals?

2014 Stats
45,420 Words Written
2709 Pages Edited
*Stats taken from 1/1/14 - 12/16/14

Due to the upcoming holidays, this is my last post for this year. Look for my next post on January 7, 2015.

It's time for another chapter of Reborn to go up on Wattpad. You can read from the beginning here or read Chapter Fifteen here.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Book Chat: New Releases and Reborn Is a Finalist


Months later than I originally thought I would have People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors published, this short story collection is finally available in print and ebook formats!


The kingdom hangs in the balance.

War threatens Foxwick on all sides.

The dreaded Shadowlands gains more souls. From the shrouded trees in Greymist Forest to the arid Blackden Barrens, monsters roam in search of their next victim. Sirens lure ships beneath Merrilea Sea. In cold and snowy Wintermill, royals plot to claim Foxwick as their own, even if they must use dragons and sorcery. Marriage between Foxwick’s king and Lochhollow’s princess creates a perilous alliance. Although brave Valdale will come to Foxwick’s aid, the cost may be more than a true friend can stomach.

Set over a hundred years, these seventeen fantasy short stories explore the people, creatures, and lands in and around the Kingdom of Foxwick.

Short stories in the collection: Common Love, Blind Scribe, Lady Bard, Siren’s Call, Dragon’s Sacrifice, Tribal Abandonment, Dragon Spy, Dragon Seer, Sword Master, Lady Death, Mage Game, Courting Magic, Monster Hunger, Mourner’s Lament, Magic Seeker, Prince’s Price, and Love’s Challenge

Epic Fantasy
The Foxwick Chronicles #2
80,000 words or 274 pages

People of Foxwick includes the short stories from the former smaller collections Women of Foxwick and Men of Foxwick (both individually published and now unpublished) and seven new short stories.

To purchase: Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords

Add on Goodreads

And if you haven't picked up the companion flash fiction collection set within the same timeline as People of Foxwick, you can purchase A to Z Flashes of Foxwick at these places: Kobo Nook iTunes / Amazon / OmniLit / Google Play / Smashwords.

I'm also at Aubrie Dionne's blog talking about four ways short fiction will make you a better writer, have a three question interview with M. Pax, and on Ellie Garratt's blog talking about five tips on world-building in short fiction.
My 10 tips for formatting is within The Insecure Writers Support Group Guide to Publishing and Beyond.

Tapping into the expertise of over a hundred talented authors from around the globe, The IWSG Guide to Publishing and Beyond contains something for every writer. Whether you are starting out and need tips on the craft of writing, looking for encouragement as an already established author, taking the plunge into self-publishing, or seeking innovative ways to market and promote your work, this guide is a useful tool. Compiled into three key areas of writing, publishing, and marketing, this valuable resource offers inspirational articles, helpful anecdotes, and excellent advice on dos and don'ts that we all wish we knew when we first started out on this writing journey. 

ISBN 9781939844088
235 pages, FREE

Available – 
Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Kobo / Smashwords / Goodreads



Some of us authors of Untethered Realms have gotten together and put our books together into a boxed set. My book Reborn is one of the books in this great collection of fantasy stories.

Stories included: Reborn by Cherie Reich
Fireseed One by Catherine Stine
Givin' up the Ghost by Gwen Gardner
The Marquis by Christine Rains
The Alpha by Christine Rains
The Rifters by M. Pax
Neverlove by Angela Brown
The Fall of Shaylar by River Fairchild
Diamonds and Dust by River Fairchild

You can get your copy at the limited-time low price of $0.99, a savings of almost $14! The collection is over 500,000 words and 1000 single-spaced pages!

Add to Goodreads!

To purchase: Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / Smashwords (Some links forthcoming.)


And on Tuesday, I got some exciting news. Reborn is a finalist in the Fantasy category in EPIC's eBook Competition. I entered Reborn into the competition back in June and wasn't expecting much, but I'm thrilled to be a finalist. They'll announce the winners at their annual conference in March, which I unfortunately will be unable to attend. I got a cool badge and a certificate for being a finalist.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

IWSG: Monthly Inspiration / Wattpad Wednesdays: Reborn Chapter 14

IWSG was created by the Captain Ninja Alex J. Cavanaugh. For a list of participants, click here. Today's co-hosts are Heather Gardner, T. Drecker at Kidbits, Eva E. Solar at Lilicasplace, and Patsy Collins.
Happy Wednesday! Wow, I can't believe this is the last IWSG post this year!

The past couple years my good friend Aubrie has sent me a calendar called The Art of Success. It has a pretty picture each month, but best of all, I love the monthly quotes. They've been a source of inspiration for me throughout the year, so I'd like share the quotes of 2014's The Art of Success calendar.

January
Insight
"Happiness is where we find it, but rarely where we seek it." - J. Petit Senn

February
Legacy
"A falling drop at last will carve a stone." - Lucretius

March
Success
"Success is a journey, not a destination." - Ben Sweetland

April
Preparation
"Don't ever take a fence down until you know why it was put up." - Robert Frost

May
Inspiration
"Shrouded in wonder, today we begin again, to discover our destiny." - Garth Catterhall Heart

June
Growth
"Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together." - Vincent Van Gogh

July
Courage
"The man of wisdom is never of two minds; the man of benevolence never worries; the man of courage is never afraid." Confucius

August
Compassion
"yet taught by time, my heart has learned to glow for other's good, and melt at other's woe." - Homer

September
Direction
"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails." - Dolly Parton

October
Rejuvenate
"Take rest; a field that has rested gives a beautiful crop." - Anonymous

November
Limitations
"The only way to finding the limits of the possible is by going beyond them into the impossible.' Arthur C. Clarke

December
Ambition
"It is better to fall short of a high mark than to reach a low one." - H.C. Payne

What has inspired you this year?

Another chapter of Reborn is up on Wattpad. You can read Chapter Fourteen here or start at the beginning here.

Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords
It's the last few days to pre-order People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors for just $0.99. You will save $3.00 by pre-ordering now.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Realms Faire Winners / Bookworm News / Writing Update: December Goals / Wattpad Wednesdays: Reborn Chapter 13


This year's Realms Faire is over. Thank you, everyone, who participated, hosted, and was a sponsor during the event. I have the winners for the Riddle Me This prizes.

Riddle #1 - Answer: Dragon - Winner of River Fairchild's Diamonds and Dust: Patricia Lynne

Riddle #2 - Answer: Phoenix - Winner of Christine Rains' The 13th Floor Complete Collection: dolorah

Riddle #3 - Answer: Centaur - Winner of Cherie Reich's People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors: Patricia Lynne

Riddle #4 - Answer: Dryad - Winner of Ellie Garratt's Passing Time and Taking Time: T.B. Markinson

Riddle #5 - Answer: Peryton - Winner of Cherie Reich's Reborn: Samantha Geary Jones


BOOKS READ

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors by Cherie Reich (me!)
The Fire Seekers by Richard Farr
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
A Diva in Manhattan by Aubrie Dionne

BOOK REVIEWS

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
Mackie Doyle is caught between worlds in Brenna Yovanoff's The Replacement. I could understand Mackie's  plight as a changeling and unable to fully be within our world and not really belonging in the one he originally came from. He tried hard to be invisible, even though people noticed him. I love Yovanoff's world she created and how she took the idea of the fae and changelings, or whatever you wish to call them, and made them her own. The pace went smoothly and the story was well written. For a new take on changelings, I would highly recommend The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff.

The Fire Seekers by Richard Farr
A new religion sweeping across the globe will change everything for Daniel and his friends in Richard Farr's The Fire Seekers. Having studied the Ancient Near East, Ancient Rome, and Ancient Greece as well as comparative mythologies, I was immediately sucked into this novel. Undecipherable ancient languages, ancient manuscripts, Greece and Mesopotamia are likely to pique my interest, and I often felt like I was reading about old friends throughout the course of this book. The mystery swept me in further. Who doesn't love a good conspiracy theory, after all? But the characters sealed the deal. Daniel is likable and heroic. The cast as a whole is quirky, and I loved them for it. The adventure is intense, and toward the end of the novel, I was holding my breath in anticipation for what would happen next. A fast-paced story, The Fire Seekers by Richard Farr is quite the fun thrilling story. I'm looking forward to the next book in The Babel Trilogy.

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
Tea-time with a wizard and thirteen dwarves turns into an unexpected adventure for Bilbo Baggins in J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit. I first read The Hobbit back in 2002 after having seen the first of The Lord of the Rings movies. With the final movie of The Hobbit coming out in December, I wanted to read the story again, and it didn't disappoint. I'd forgotten many things and remembered others due to watching the movies. Tolkien writes this story as if he's telling you the story with asides and foreshadowing. Bilbo is a character to cheer for as he grows from a timid, flustered hobbit to a bold burglar worthy of a fourteenth of treasure. This story is lighter in narration and sometimes a bit silly than Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. I enjoyed reading The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien again and now I really want to read his Lord of the Rings again too.

A Diva in Manhattan by Aubrie Dionne
Alaina Amaldi must change her image if she wants to keep the role of Pamina in Aubrie Dionne's A Diva in Manhattan. A brash diva, Alaina often gets what she wants, except when it comes to love. Brett Robinson uses his tragic past as a barrier to keep from loving again. I wondered how he and Alaina would ever work out, even though they seemed perfect for each other. The dual points of view kept the tension high throughout. As I have read most of Dionne's work, reading this book was like coming home. I particularly loved the opera/music teaching parts since I once was an opera singer. With tender moments and intense ones, A Diva in Manhattan by Aubrie Dionne is a must-read story for readers who love sweet romances!

COVER REVEAL

The super-talented Erin Dameron-Hill has created the cover art for Untethered Realms' boxed set collection Fantasy Uprising. This collection will release in early December.

A collection of nine fantastic, spine-tingling stories. Magic. Mystery. Murder. Heartbreak and Hope. Defeat and Victory. Fantasy Uprising delivers a heaping serving of the best of fantasy.

Reborn by Cherie Reich: To save a kingdom, a prophetess must challenge Fate.

Fireseed One by Catherine Stine: On a devastated Earth in 2089, the son of a famous marine biologist must travel to a lethal hotzone with his worst enemy who helped destroy the world’s food source, to search for Fireseed One, a mythical hybrid plant that may not even exist. 

Givin' Up the Ghost by Gwen Gardner: In the haunted modern day medieval village of Sabrina shores, Indigo Eady must help a ghost solve his murder before she and her gang become the next victims.

The Marquis by Christine Rains: A retired demon must become the beast he loathes to save the woman he loves.

The Alpha by Christine Rains: A werewolf hunted by her pack must find a way hide or fight a battle she believes she cannot win.

The Rifters by M. Pax: In a strange wilderness town, a misplaced city gal must deal with a secret organization, a man from 1888, and a head-stealing phantom to save her missing sister.

Neverlove by Angela Brown: A tormented suicide survivor must find the power in her pain or risk the Devourer robbing her of a second chance to live, a first chance at love, and her very soul.

The Fall of Shaylar by River Fairchild: Magic is real. So is betrayal. Rivalry, jealousy, a desperate attempt to grab the magic of Shaylar—all converge to bring about the end of the precarious balance between the Five Kingdoms.

Diamonds and Dust by River Fairchild: Magic is real. So is betrayal. Two heirs. A Kingdom of dust on a troubled world. One might resurrect it. One might destroy it all.

BOOKS RELEASED IN NOVEMBER

Burdin of Choice by Alexander Nader
Keeper of the Lost Cities: Everblaze by Shannon Messenger
Yakuza Territory by Milo James Fowler
Captured Love by Juliana Haygert
The Glass Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg
My Sister’s Grave by Robert Dugoni
The Trouble with Falling by Rachel Morgan
Tarkin: Star Wars by James Luceno
The Chronicles of Ara: Creation by Joel Eisenberg and Stephen Hillard
Wickedly They Dream by Cathrina Constantine
A Diva in Manhattan by Aubrie Dionne
From the Cradle by Louise Voss and Mark Edwards
Until the Debt is Paid by Alexander Hartung
No Strings by Mark SaFranko
Presumption of Guilt by Marti Green
The Child's Past Life by Cai Jun
Revival by Stephen King
Killer Instinct by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Blue Labyrinth by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
Legion by Brandon Sanderson
Taken with a Grain of Salt by Aaron Galvin
Married by Midnight by Talli Roland
You Cannot Kill a Swan: The Love Story of Lyuba and Ivan by Ursula Hartlein
Blood on the Badge by David Huffstetler
The Attic of Sand and Secrets by Medeia Sharif
The Unhappening of Genesis Lee by Shallee McArthur

Happy Wednesday!

I've been making very little progress this month on any of my November goals so that means no working on Fall of Gravity or the outline of Destined.

It's a good thing I didn't try doing NaNoWriMo, even though I really missed not doing it this year! I've been having dry eye problems again, and reading and staring at the computer screen for 8+ hours a day sometimes leaves my vision blurry. When that happens, I have to take a couple days away from doing much eye work. Because of this issue, I've decided to take it easier on myself and not expect to do too much for the rest of the year.

Because of the upcoming holiday in the US, I won't be posting next week. I'll be back on December 3rd's IWSG post.

Here are my December goals:
  • Once upon a Nightmare: A Collection - I've decided to work on this one for the rest of November and December. I hope to have the second edition of Once upon a Nightmare (originally titled The Nightmare Collection) ready by January.
  • Format and publish Fantasy Uprising. This boxed set features authors (me included) of Untethered Realms.
What are your December goals?

2014 Stats
45,420 Words Written
2631 Pages Edited
*Stats taken from 1/1/14 - 11/18/14

And it's also time for another chapter of Reborn to go up on Wattpad. To read from the beginning, click here. To read Chapter Thirteen, click here.


Don't forget there's still time to pre-order your copy of People of Foxwick and Their Neighbors. You'll save $3.00 by purchasing now. Pre-order at Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Realms Faire: Riddle Me This (Riddle #5)

It's the last day of the Realms Faire, an annual event originally created by M. Pax. This year I'm hosting Riddle Me This. Read the riddle. In the comments, make your guess. All correct responses will be entered in to win the last daily prize. I will accept entries for this last riddle until Monday, November 17 at 8 AM EST. I will announce the winners on Wednesday, November 19.

The answer for Riddle #4:
Dryad


Riddle me this:
I am a hybrid creature,
half-deer, half bird.
My shadow displays who I used to be,
depending on what source you read.
What am I?

The correct responses will be entered in a drawing to win the ebook

More Games! More Prizes! Visit other Realms Faire events for more fun and chances to win more prizes: Joust ~ Soak-a-Bloke/Drench-a-Wench ~ Riddle Me This ~ Dueling Bards ~ Stockade Brigade ~ Phasers ~Dragon Hunt ~ Wisdom of the Creative Realms ~VelociRaffle Live Performance / Cody Sill: Into Oblivion

Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords

Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Realms Faire: Riddle Me This (Riddle #4)

It's time for the Realms Faire, an annual event originally created by M. Pax. This year I'm hosting Riddle Me This. Read the riddle. In the comments, make your guess. All correct responses will be entered in to win a daily prize. The daily contest will run until 8 AM EST of the next day (i.e. when the next riddle appears), and I will announce all winners on Wednesday, November 19.

The answer for Riddle #3:
Centaur


Riddle me this:
I am the shy seductress of the forest.
Oak trees gave my people our name,
but we encompass all trees now.
I walk with Artemis,
and yet cannot venture far from home.
What am I?

Today's correct responses will be entered in a drawing to win the ebooks
Thank you, Ellie, for donating two ebooks for today's prize!

More Games! More Prizes! Visit other Realms Faire events for more fun and chances to win more prizes: Joust ~ Soak-a-Bloke/Drench-a-Wench ~ Riddle Me This ~ Dueling Bards ~ Stockade Brigade ~ Phasers ~Dragon Hunt ~ Wisdom of the Creative Realms ~VelociRaffle Live Performance / Cody Sill: Into Oblivion

Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords

Amazon / Google Play / iTunes / Kobo / Nook / OmniLit / Smashwords