Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer Book Crushes - Who's Yours?

Let's talk about book crushes. Who hasn't had a crush on a character?  I'll admit that I used to read a lot of romance back in the day. I always fell just a little bit in love with the hunky male protagonist. I did love me some happily-ever-after. *sigh* I still do.

Button_who is your book crush

And now that I'm older - well, I still get little crushes. My current read is the Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices series). If you're reading the series, you know that Tessa is torn between Jem and Will. They're both good guys, but Will is a bit of a bad boy - and yeah, he's my book crush. I adore black hair and blue eyes, and by his description, I think he'd take my breath away - never mind that I could be his mother older sister. Anyway, he could be my book boyfriend, right?

So for a bit of fun summer reading activity, I've gotten together with some other authors to offer our books for .99 cents - and they all have elements of romance. You could find your own book boyfriend for only .99 cents!

Here's the scoop:

Hot sun, hot sand, cool drinks, dark tans. Ahhhh. But your summer won’t be complete until you land a new BOOK BOYFRIEND, right? Lucky for you, we’ve got you covered!


SUMMER BOOK CRUSH offers 50+ titles in many genres. This means 50+ chances to (fictitiously) fall in love. And the best part? Each of these gems is only 99¢, but for a limited time only. The SUMMER BOOK CRUSH event starts on June 26th and ends (yes, even the best things in life end at some point) on June 28th. So don't wait up! Mingle with our BOOK BOYFRIENDS and invite all your friends to participate too. There are plenty of BOOK BOYS to share!

Find your summer’s fling between the pages of a book. And don't stop on one - after all we have many BOOK BOYFRIENDS for you to mingle with.


Of course I have to talk a bit about Givin' Up The Ghost.
 We all know that Indigo has a huuuge crush on Badger. But, well, they both come with some serious baggage. Here's what Badger had to say about Indigo: 

My name’s Badger. I’m just your average eighteen year old guy. At least, until last summer when my dad disappeared. I had to take up the slack and help out running the family pub, the Blind Badger.

But then things got really strange. This girl came around and started saying my dad was dead and that she had spoken to his ghost. I took some convincing, I can tell you. He had been murdered, in fact, and we ended up doing our own investigation.

I care for this girl, but with ghosts popping in and out all the time causing chaos, I’m pretty sure I need a break. I was knocked to the ground, thrown up on and nearly killed. What’s a guy supposed to do?

Givin' Up The Ghost now only .99 cents



Barnes & Noble


 So who is your current book crush?

Monday, June 24, 2013

Fun (aka Lazy) Monday

Today is Fun Monday!
(otherwise known as Lazy Monday)
Credit goes to...
So I'm sharing something "Fun" instead of deep or informative.
Happy Monday, everyone!
I hope you have a blessed week!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Twitter Strategy and The Good, The Bad, and The Quirky

I have a lot of questions about the land of Twitterdom.

But first, what is it? According to Twitter, it's "An information network. Twitter is a real-time information network that connects you to the latest stories, ideas, opinions and news about what you find interesting. Simply find the accounts you find most compelling and follow the conversations."

I've been on Twitter for about a year, but I'm still confused. I use it to tweet a bit about my book and other author's books. I retweet a lot. Sometimes I tweet a positive saying or recommend someone's blog post. But really, that's about it. I definitely don't bombard my followers with tweets to buy my book.

But I notice some people will say right up front that if you're not following to get to know them, that they will unfollow you. What's up with that? Can you know someone in short bursts of 140 characters or less?

And that brings me to another question: Is there a strategy for who to follow or not? I mean, do I follow someone because they have a lot of followers and their reach is further if they happen to retweet something of mine? Or do I not follow them because they have too many followers to pay any attention to anything I might put out there and their stuff just clogs my feed?

I also notice that some of my new followers might have 80,000 followers and only follow 10K? Do they follow and then unfollow for some reason?

I follow mostly authors, but also a few others like Maya Angelou and Tiny Buddha who always have something positive to say. Should I be following everyone I can in order to increase my following? Should I always return a follow?

Maybe I'm being na├»ve, but I really don't understand if I should have some kind a strategy...

Do you have a Twitter strategy? Should I?


P.S. Angela Brown's having a Q & A session over on Facebook on Saturday, called The Good, the Bad and the Quirky. I know from experience how fun and clever and witty she is, so I can't wait to check it out.
Hope you can stop by, too!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Worlds and Wings and SpecFic Things

Just a short post today to give you a heads up on a couple of happenings going on in the blogoverse today.

Untethered Realms has a new blog. What or who is Untethered Realms, you ask? It's a group of speculative fiction writers who have banded together to support and share their knowledge and experience with each other and the writing community. I'm sure you know most of us, so please stop by and check out our awesome new blog and give us a follow.

It's the third Monday of the month, so it's time for Writers 4 Writers, hosted by Stephen TrempChristine RainsC. M. Brown, and M.Pax. This month we're helping Marta Szemik join the bestsellers list. Stop by her blog and pick up some pre-made tweets and Facebook posts and help out a fellow writer. Want to be featured on Writers 4 Writers? Go HERE to sign up. Also find them on Facebook HERE.


What do you have planned for this lovely Monday?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Assassins and Poison and Kisses

It's time for another Angela Brown cover reveal and book release!
My Partner in ParanormYA not only can  crank them out, but they're really good, to boot! She's such an inspiration. When I grow up *ahem* I want to be just like her.
Make way for the second novella in the NEO Chronicles series,
*drum roll*

What harm can come from a kiss?

Caine Fordham knows the danger all too well.

As the Kill Circuit’s top lady-killer, business is good. Yet Caine knows the life of an assassin isn’t meant to last forever, just as love is impossible for him. Who could love a man with poison lacing his veins and a kiss that kills?

When Caine decides to take one last job, deal out one last kiss, he discovers there’s more to life than death, and more to love than pain.

This is the second installment in the NEO Chronicles: Characters Revealed series. Available now at Amazon US and other online outlets by Friday, it will make a nice slice of reading for a lunch break or for a quick read during the train/trolley/car pool work commute (ummm...if you're driving, No Reading While Driving lol!!)

Here's a little excerpt. You'll see there's a bit of a difference in the description of the character and the model for the cover, but the cover - as a whole - embodies the dark mystery that is Caine Fordham.

Caine stood up slowly, smirking to conceal how much her questions bothered him. Living a hundred years as a walking wasteland didn’t leave him many career options.

With a long, lean body, a sun-kissed tan (genetics, not from being outdoors) and square jawline, his targets often mistook him for a male model. “The brooding type,” is what he’d heard many times. If his chest, stomach and back didn’t resemble black lace from the poisons that called his body home, male model could work. He wore his black silky mane cut short at the nape. Longer curls in the front veiled his eyes, making him even more mysterious, or so women told him. A definite plus when luring his prey.

Bearing the kiss of death didn’t fit any job descriptions…with one exception.


And he had a spotless record with the Kill Circuit.


Monday, June 10, 2013

Stealing Time

After receiving lots of advice and encouragement from the writing community at the last Insecure Writer's Support Group, I had a lot to think about. My circumstances have changed and now I'm working full time and struggling to find time to write and edit or even blog.

What was your advice?

"You'll find the rhythm of writing and working that works for you."

"But I know so many writers who do manage a full time job, kids, and writing. I just figure they were super humans"

"It's really difficult to find time to write. You just have to steal time when you can."

"I have long moments I can steal. I have short moments I can hide away. I take the time I can get"

"I just force myself to do it. I set aside time in the evening and write no matter what. Well, if the house caught fire I'd probably stop."

"...I do the best I can- half hour here, five minutes there, 30 seconds jotting that idea down before I lose it... that little goes a long way to keep me going."

"Writing is only one of my 'super-powers' (lol) so I roll with the punches and don't crank out words just to fit some profile. I work when I can and fit in some down time. Publishing is not a race or a destination, just a mile-marker along the way."

"When I was working, it helped to tackle smaller chunks [it's not as overwhelming] and gave myself days off w/o guilt."

"... I think it's important not to let yourself feel guilty. You write when you can!"

I really took your advice to heart. "Stealing" time seems to be a popular concept among working writers. At work on Friday, I had a slow afternoon.  So I stealthily opened the outline on the second novella in the series I'm writing. I thought about where it was going. I actually asked myself what I could "do" to my characters to try to  prompt some kind of creativity in myself...

Nothing came.

So I worked a little. Looked back at the novella. Worked a little more. I finally turned back to the novella and thought of a plot point / scene prompt to add. Then added another. Two plot / scene prompts. That's about all I had.

But as it turns out, the direction in which those two scene prompts led me absolutely rocked! Because on Sunday when I opened the outline again (and mind you, it had been about two months before I even thought about working on it that previous Friday afternoon), I added another, then another and another plot point until I finished the outline in just a couple of hours. It's all done except for how Indigo gets rescued from her latest predicament, and I haven't decided how that will happen yet.

I wasn't feeling creative at all when I opened that document on Friday. In fact, the two prompts I wrote weren't even particularly creative. But it was those few stolen moments that actually led to a windfall of ideas that allowed me to complete the outline. For me, that's huge. I use scene prompts / plot points to write my books, so I know where they're going. I have a beginning, a middle and an end. I know what scenes I'm going to write. Heck, I'm practically done!

I always felt like I needed large chunks of space and time to settle into writing. And maybe I still do, I don't know.

All I know is that this time, a few stolen moments worked!

Thank you all so much for the advice!

You guys rock!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Insecure Writer's Support Group and Me

Happy Insecure Writer's Support Group Day! This awesome event is hosted by Alex Cavanaugh on the first Wednesday of every month. You can sign up HERE to share your writerly insecurities and receive the support of the writing community.

As my buddies know, I've just returned from a month-long bloggy break. After the A-Z Challenge, I think most of us needed it.

What have I been doing? Packing, moving from Colorado to California and starting a new/old job. Without going into details, because this must be familiar to most of you, I needed to make money outside of my less-than-lucrative writing career. Who knew?

When my old employer called and asked me to come back to work, I couldn't say 'no,' even though it's only a guaranteed six months (whether I remain is dependent on if someone else decides to stay or move on. And then, of course, it's up to me whether I accept the permanent job if it's offered to me). In any case, we're ready to move on from Colorado - we love winter but nine months of winter are too much. My life is sort of in limbo....

So now I'm in California working and the hubs is in Colorado trying to sell the house.


I know that so many of you already do this, but I'm struggling. I'm tired at the end of the day and not feeling the least bit creative. I have a novel and a novella to edit (the novella is really close, though. Eeep!). Not to mention blogging/blog visits - and oh how I missed you all!

Help! I need advice! How do you do it?!

Rant over.

How are you all doing?

Monday, June 3, 2013

The Flavor is in the Flaw

I'm baack! But more about that on Wednesday for the Insecure Writer's Support Group!

Today, I'll be over at Dianne Salerni's Blog - hope you can join us!

And now, I'm thrilled to have Rachel Morgan here today talking about flawed characters!

Check it out:)

Flawed Characters in Fiction

Why have flawed characters?

If you start reading a book with perfect characters in it, you'll probably put it down. Perfect people are boring! Who wants to read about them? Flawed people, however, are more interesting. They make mistakes. Mess up. So you keep reading because you want to find out what happens to them. Flaws also mean characters that you can relate to. You understand and forgive them for the mistakes they make, because you might do the same thing in that (fictional) situation. And after the mistakes comes the conflict. A good book must have conflict, and there would be no conflict if there were only perfect people! Lastly, the most important reason characters should have flaws is so that they have space to grow. What’s the point of a story if the characters aren’t going to learn something from it?

Some examples of flawed characters

Damon Salvatore, The Vampire Diaries


This guy is SUPER flawed when we first meet him! Selfish, arrogant, proud, manipulative, and he shows no remorse for the tons of humans he kills.

What redeems him?

Bottom line: his love for Elena. As he falls in love with her, his humanity starts to show through. He begins to care for certain people. He loves his brother. He will do ANYTHING to protect Elena. And at the end of the day when he winds up second best yet again (Katherine chose Stefan; now Elena chooses Stefan), our hearts break for him.

Will Herondale, The Infernal Devices series


When we meet Will in Clockwork Angel, he is a complete and total jackass to absolutely everyone except his best friend. He uses his quick witted and sarcastic tongue to lash out at people, even those trying to be nice to him. I was convinced I could never like him.

What redeems him?

Then along came Clockwork Prince. We find out exactly why Will acts the way he does, and it makes SO. MUCH. SENSE. We understand how alone he must have felt all these years because of the curse. And we know, we just KNOW, that when he finally realizes he can be happy, it’s already too late.


Harry Potter, the Harry Potter series


Harry can be arrogant, hot-tempered, and act too quickly without pausing to think.

What redeems him?

Come on. He freaking defeats the Dark Lord Voldemort! And how does he do that? He gives himself up to die at Voldemort’s hand. He realizes that Voldemort cannot be killed while he, Harry, still lives. So he chooses to sacrifice himself.

Are there flawed characters in The Faerie Prince?

Absolutely! Violet focuses far too much on being the best. She is kind of emotionally stunted. She refuses to deal with things that hurt her, choosing instead to push them deep down into her imaginary Stuff I Don’t Think About box.

Ryn is downright rude to people in order to keep them at a distance. Does he have a reason for doing this? You betcha ;-) But you’ll have to read The Faerie Prince to find out what it is! Speaking of which, you can find it at the following places online, plus a few others:

~  ~  ~

About the Author:

Rachel Morgan was born in South Africa and spent a large portion
of her childhood living in a fantasy land of her own making. After completing a
degree in genetics, she decided science wasn’t for her—after all, they didn’t
approve of made-up facts. These days she spends much of her time immersed in
fantasy land once more, writing fiction for young adults.|

Don't forget the giveaway!