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Mary Sue Cthulhu Conquers Fandom Fest

Published August 7, 2013 by admin

So most people think I do everything myself. This isn’t true. I have a lot of people I enlist for help. I also have a presence that skulks around me. It’s usually too shy to say anything other than to whisper all the ideas that I should be working on in my ear. After all, how do I manage a persona that’s so sweetly evil? Well, cons apparently bring this elusive muse out of hiding and for the first time ever I was able to capture her on film when she thought I wasn’t looking.

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SH Roddey and I had set up our booth with all our lovely books and swaggy items. The problem was that we both had panels at some point, so we needed help to watch this thing and network for us. Just when I thought all was lost, I suddenly realized that someone had tagged along with me…

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While Booth Babe Bill is more than capable of handling things, sometimes genre stuff takes a special touch. Enter Mary Sue Cthulhu. She accompanied me last year to panels, but was picture shy. This year she has a new zombie sock monkey hat that apparently gives her the confidence to show herself to the masses. Here she is handing out Lost in the Shadows swag.

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Thankfully Susan didn’t mind when Mary Sue Cthulhu tried to give her pointers on engaging the public.

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She really hit it off with J. Cornell Michel (author of Jordan’s Brains)  in the booth next door. She either has developed a taste for zombie fiction or liked feeding on her brain purse.

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At one point I was back and forth at panels so I lost track of where she went. Then we all turned around and saw that she’d got herself into a bit of a, well…situation…

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Sigh. I keep telling her she can’t taunt ghostbusters, but she never listens to me.

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Thankfully, she got away and hid among the Seventh Star Press stacks.

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She’s an old-school sort of girl, so she’s not sure how to take urban fantasy. She and John F. Allen had words, but I think they finally reached an understanding.

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She was really intrigued Haunting Obsession, though.

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….Although she may have been a little too enthusiastic when she got a chance to meet the author, Rj Sullivan.

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I’m not surprised to find that she really loves Poseidon’s Children, especially with all the killer fish people in it.

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She may be the epitome of a sparkly evil eldergoddess, but she’s also a fangirl at heart. Michael West totally made her day!

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At this point J.L. Mulvihill came along and reminded us that we had the cosplay panel.

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She was a little self-conscious since she only had the one outfit. Thankfully, J.L. graciously let her borrow another hat so she could be appropriately steampunk.

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She took a break after the panel to admire Alexx Miller’s jewelry…

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Then she noticed Josh Young of Jitterbug PR giving out free stuff, so she wanted to check out the bookmarks…

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She may have gotten a little carried away with the free candy, but to be fair she hadn’t devoured many souls so she had to keep her energy up, somehow.

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But then it was back to business. She feels that I need to bump up my publicity, so she sat down with Josh to discuss my options for me.

I’m lucky to have such a great muse and helper (even if she is either too shy to show her face or a complete ham once she gets going). She definitely kept things interesting. Who knows? Maybe she’ll show her face again in the future. You never know where a sparkly eldergoddess will pop up…

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Fandom Fest Picture Fest: Meet my author buds!

Published August 3, 2013 by admin

So what would a con be without a picture post or three thousand? I’m going to share some of my misadventures with everyone in visual format. Not only will you be able to put faces to names, but you’ll be able to put links to faces and names as well, so you’ll get to check out all these authors’ work along with seeing their wondrous visages!

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Was so excited to finally meet the uber-talented John F. Allen, author of The God Killers. He’s a trip and a half and he treated us to an impromptu, rather intriguing reading of his book. It was also fun times to see my bud J.L. Mulvihill again. We did the cosplay panel and improv panel together, and fun times abounded (along with talking camels and corsets. It’s a long story, trust me). Her book Boxcar Baby is just out, and definitely worth a read!

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Rockin’ it out with Rj Sullivan, whom I met in person for the first time! He’s the author of Haunting Obsession, definitely worth a read!

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This is Alexx Miller mugging with J.L.’s Steampunk Squirrels. Her blog is amazing and you should check it out right now. Her husband is the always-insightful Charlie Kenmore, who writes some really great stuff of differing types, as well.  He’s usually behind the camera, doing his artsy avante-garde style photography thing, thumbs and blurry photos and all! <g>

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John Allen again, with his utterly incredible personal assistant living it up in the background. S.H. Roddey is also there with me, and judging by how happy we are, this is probably after we got to check out John’s impromptu reading.

Note: I have no idea why I have no normal shots of Eric Garrison  (Four ’til Late) or Michael West (every new horror book ever), but they are incredibly talented, as well. Also not pictured is our table-mate M.B. Weston who is a rockin’ YA author, and L. Andrew Cooper, who was incredibly insightful on the horror panel with me (and has suffered my author interviews on this blog in the past <g>)

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This is Stephen Zimmer, rock star among authors. Not only did he coordinate the lit track, save us when we got locked out of the hall, get us badges, and get our schedules up, but he also allows us to mercilessly harass him by claiming it’s his birthday while out to eat (not my doing) and taking obnoxious, spur-of-the-moment photos of him (obviously totally my doing).  I’m not entirely convinced that he’s human and not some super-author android sent to outdo all us mere mortals with his works of epic and urban fantasy.

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This is Ali Justice, adorable steampunk girl and PR Person extraordinaire. Seriously, she’ll blow your mind with how much she knows. She’s part of the powerhouse behind Jitterbug PR, which you should check out if you’re an author.

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No idea who this weirdo is, other than that he kept following me around all weekend. Actually, that would be the other part of Jitterbug PR, Josh Young. He does know what he’s doing even if he follows me around making faces like that instead of working his table.

So now that you’ve met most of the gang, next picture post we’ll take a look at the very serious, very literary things we all get up to at these things.

Excerpt: Writer’s Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Published May 14, 2013 by admin

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Today I’m sharing an excerpt from Writer’s Workshop! But first, let’s remember why this book is so great for not only established writers, aspiring writers, but those also just plain interested in the art of genre writing.

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Writers Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy is a collection of essays and interviews by and with many of the movers-and-shakers in the industry.  Each contributor covers the specific element of craft he or she excels in.  Expect to find varying perspectives and viewpoints, which is why you many find differing opinions on any particular subject.

This is, after all, a collection of advice from professional storytellers.  And no two writers have made it to the stage via the same journey-each has made his or her own path to success.  And that’s one of the strengths of this book.  The reader is afforded the luxury of discovering various approaches and then is allowed to choose what works best for him or her.

Contributing authors are:

 

Neil Gaiman
Orson Scott Card
Ursula K. Le Guin
Alan Dean Foster
James Gunn
Tim Powers
Harry Turtledove
Larry Niven
Joe Haldeman
Kevin J. Anderson
Elizabeth Bear
Jay Lake
Nancy Kress
George Zebrowski
Pamela Sargent
Mike Resnick
Ellen Datlow
James Patrick Kelly
Jo Fletcher
Stanley Schmidt
Gordon Van Gelder
Lou Anders
Peter Crowther
Ann VanderMeer
John Joseph Adams
Nick Mamatas
Lucy A. Snyder
Alethea Kontis
Nisi Shawl
Jude-Marie Green
Nayad A. Monroe
G. Cameron Fuller
Jackie Gamber
Amanda DeBord
Max Miller
Jason Sizemore

And now, the excerpt:

“Nothing fills a page faster than dialogue,” the writer said.

 There it is, the blank page or screen, the intimidating and recurring challenge every writer must face. The temptation is to fill that page as quickly as possible, to advance the narrative however you can. Often the easiest way to do that, even for writers who are not masters of dialogue, is to get the characters talking. A few A few writers are even bold enough to begin novels or stories with a line of dialogue, something I don’t recommend unless you possess the skills of the early Robert A Heinlein, who began his story “Blowups Happen” with the suspenseful line: “Put down that wrench!” Orson Scott Card also opened his popular novel Ender’s Game with a piece of dialogue that immediately rouses the reader’s curiosity: “‘I’ve watched through his eyes, I’ve listened through his ears, and I tell you he’s the one.” Writing good and convincing dialogue is usually enough of a challenge without relying on it to hook a reader right at the beginning of one’s story. Writing dialogue, whatever the difficulties, is generally easier than, for example, crafting descriptive passages, offering insights into a character’s

psychology, creating vigorous and absorbing action scenes, or presenting necessary exposition in a graceful way.

Writers who harbor dreams of scriptwriting may be especially prone to fill pages with dialogue, but others also succumb, partly because dialogue is a shortcut and a very useful one. Sometimes a few well-chosen words of conversation can accomplish as much in a story as pages of description and exposition. There are also a fair number of readers who are more absorbed by stretches of repartee than by beautifully and poetically rendered descriptions. (Writers meet these people all the time; they’re the ones who tell you they skip all the dull parts, often meaning those carefully wrought passages that cost you so much effort.) Better just to cut to the chase, or in this case, drop in on the conversation.

The strength of dialogue—namely that it can be a useful shortcut—is also its weakness. Writers who rely too much on dialogue risk leaving too much out. The writer may hear the characters clearly and easily envision the scene, but that doesn’t mean that the reader will. (In a review of a novel some years back, Joanna Russ wrote that passages in that book seemed to be largely about names drinking cups of coffee, noticing the designs of ashtrays, or riffing on the furnishings in a room, the characters were so indistinguishable.) The beginning writer is likely to produce dialogue in which the reader will find it hard to tell one character from another. The useful shortcut can produce a story that is sketchy, in which too much has been left out

 

And don’t forget, there’s a tour-wide giveaway going on!

1- $30 Amazon Gift Card and a special hardcover copy of The Writers
Workshop of Science Fiction & Fantasy, and epub or mobi version of The
Writers Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy (on hardcovers, only 100
made, NEVER offered for sale) (US/Canada residents only)

2 softcovers of The Writers Workshop of Science Fiction & Fantasy
(US/Canada residents only), and ePub/Mobi version of book.

4 runner up winners of ePub or Mobi versions of The Writers Workshop of
Science Fiction and Fantasy, PLUS winner’s choice of one of four new
anthologies in ePub or Mobi formats:  Southern Haunts (Paranormal) ,
Perfect Flaw (Dystopian), Vampires Don’t Sparkle! (Horror) or The End
Was Not the End: Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy Tales (Fantasy)

 To get in on these prizes, please go to the Rafflecopter Here

Jitterbug PR presents: The Writer’s Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Published May 13, 2013 by admin

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You know I’ve been excited about this book for a long, long time, so I’m thrilled to be a host on this tour today! We’ve got an excellent guest post lined up, but first, let’s take a look at what this book actually is.

 

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Writers Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy is a collection of essays and interviews by and with many of the movers-and-shakers in the industry.  Each contributor covers the specific element of craft he or she excels in.  Expect to find varying perspectives and viewpoints, which is why you many find differing opinions on any particular subject.

This is, after all, a collection of advice from professional storytellers.  And no two writers have made it to the stage via the same journey-each has made his or her own path to success.  And that’s one of the strengths of this book.  The reader is afforded the luxury of discovering various approaches and then is allowed to choose what works best for him or her.

 The following is a list of all the talented people who were brought in to contribute on this excellent resource:

Neil Gaiman
Orson Scott Card
Ursula K. Le Guin
Alan Dean Foster
James Gunn
Tim Powers
Harry Turtledove
Larry Niven
Joe Haldeman
Kevin J. Anderson
Elizabeth Bear
Jay Lake
Nancy Kress
George Zebrowski
Pamela Sargent
Mike Resnick
Ellen Datlow
James Patrick Kelly
Jo Fletcher
Stanley Schmidt
Gordon Van Gelder
Lou Anders
Peter Crowther
Ann VanderMeer
John Joseph Adams
Nick Mamatas
Lucy A. Snyder
Alethea Kontis
Nisi Shawl
Jude-Marie Green
Nayad A. Monroe
G. Cameron Fuller
Jackie Gamber
Amanda DeBord
Max Miller
Jason Sizemore

Amanda Debord has written a great post for us about emotions a lot of us in the writing world feel, no matter where we’re at.

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When I first started hearing the buzz about this new guide, Writers Workshop of Science Fiction & Fantasy, I was a bit skeptical.  Not like you think, though.  I knew some of the people involved and had (obviously) heard of just a few others ifyouknowwhoi’mtalkingabout.  I had no doubt the final product would be high-quality.  No, my skepticism was over my understanding of the venture.  We’re putting out a book with advice from Neil Gaiman and Orson Scott Card and … me?  Surely there must be some mistake.  Just take a minute to read the names at the top of the list.  What are these people doing, giving advice, anyway?  It’s not like they actually try at this stuff.  I’m pretty sure Neil Gaiman just wakes up each morning, and the Gods of Awesomeness have delivered his latest product tooth-fairy-style on a golden platter on his nightstand.  Right?

So, I’m only being a little silly here, but I think you know what I’m getting at.  When I first started to take seriously the thought of myself as a writer, one thing constantly frustrated me.  No matter how happy I was with a piece I’d written, no matter how close to flawless I felt I’d gotten, there was still something intangible between my stuff and their stuff.  I wasn’t a “real” writer.  I was just someone who wrote.  There was something missing there – some spark, some specialness that was the secret handshake to the club where the real writers hung out.  We are not the same people.

It wasn’t long before I found myself taking part in some critiquing circles, and found myself doing some editing, which is all just fancy forms of one of my favorite past-times: giving advice.  “You know what I’d do with this character if I were you?”  That sort of thing.  I got advice myself, too.  From writers better than me.   From writers worse than me.   And it all helped.  Still does, in fact.

That’s just the thing.  All writers are readers at heart, and we all struggle with the blank page.  Just like you.  Sometimes the stories come fast, out of nowhere, and really do feel like they’re laid like mysterious packages on our doorstep.   With others, we battle with every word.  Sometimes, we read an essay by Orson Scott Card and it inspires us to try something new.  Sometimes, we break out that dusty old Strunk & White and remind ourselves just how to use a semi-colon.  Sometimes, we read a round-table interview with Amanda DeBord and it helps us understand why that editor was being such a jerk, and why we really shouldn’t send her hate mail.  They’re all building blocks.

And, all this advice from all of these people, top of the page to bottom shows you something very important.  We are all the same people.  Forgive my hubris, and realize the hidden message in what all of these great writers are saying in their essays in this book: This is what worked for me.  I’ve struggled with what you’re struggling with, and here’s the lantern that lit my way.

And like always, we have some giveaways going on! The first is a tour-wide giveaway for the following prizes:

1- $30 Amazon Gift Card and a special hardcover copy of The Writers
Workshop of Science Fiction & Fantasy, and epub or mobi version of The
Writers Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy (on hardcovers, only 100
made, NEVER offered for sale) (US/Canada residents only)

2 softcovers of The Writers Workshop of Science Fiction & Fantasy
(US/Canada residents only), and ePub/Mobi version of book.

4 runner up winners of ePub or Mobi versions of The Writers Workshop of
Science Fiction and Fantasy, PLUS winner’s choice of one of four new
anthologies in ePub or Mobi formats:  Southern Haunts (Paranormal) ,
Perfect Flaw (Dystopian), Vampires Don’t Sparkle! (Horror) or The End
Was Not the End: Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy Tales (Fantasy)

To put your name in for those prizes, go to the Rafflecopter HERE 

 

Aaaand, I also have an ebook copy of Writer’s Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy to give away. Simply leave a comment (with an email address)  telling me why you want it, and I’ll select a name at random at the end of the week!

 

 

Blog Tour: The Guest Book by Andrea Hurst

Published March 10, 2013 by admin

 

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Today we continue with blog tour madness! This time it’s The Guest Book by Andrea Hurst. It’s amazing what randomly found objects can lead a person to do. Sometimes they’re just something to put away, yet sometimes we all stumble upon something life changing. Andrea is here today with an interview, but first let’s find out a little about her book!

 

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This book weaves together the heart of Nicholas Sparks, the romance of Nora Roberts, and the charm of Debbie Macomber.

Fleeing her picture-perfect marriage among the privileged set of Brentwood and the wreckage of a failed marriage, Lily Parkins decides to move to the only place that still holds happy memories, her grandmother’s old farmhouse. The lush and majestic setting of the Pacific Northwest calls to her and offers a place of refuge and perhaps renewal. Her grandmother has passed away, leaving the Madrona Island Bed & Breakfast Inn to Lily.

Left with only an old guestbook as her guide–a curious book full of letters, recipes, and glimpses into her family history–Lily is determined to embrace her newfound independence and recreate herself, one page at a time. With the help of the quirky island residents she has befriended, she slowly finds the strength to seek out happiness on her own terms. But as soon as she has sworn off men and is standing on her own two feet, Lily meets Ian, the alluring artist who lives next door, and her new life is suddenly thrown off course. The last thing she wants to do right now is to open her heart to another man.

Ultimately, Lily must decide if it’s worth giving up her soul for security or risking everything to follow her heart.

***

 

SJ: Every writer has some sort of process. Give us a glimpse into yours. Do you meticulously outline? Do you write depending on what calls are out there?

AH: Pantster. Definitely. However, I do research and I always know the beginning and end, theme, and basic scenes. Either way, I love for my story or characters to take off in directions that surprise even me. I steal every free minute I can to write and often write outside my home, where I get a lot more accomplished and drink wonderful coffee. I also tend to eat a lot of chocolate while I’m writing.

SJ: Are you a meticulous planner or do you believe in the muse? Where do your ideas come from? Do they filter in through your dreams? Do they show up at inopportune times and whap you upside the head? Do they result in a shady deal with a dark power?

AH: I truly believe in the muse, with enough planning, research, and craft to back it up. My first book came from an experience I had with a friend, while the second one came from a dream. The ideas haunt me until I write them

SJ: What’s the book/story that’s closest to your heart? Is there a piece that you clearly feel is a piece of you? Do you play favorites?

AH: The book that’s closest to my heart at the moment is the one I just completed, called Always with You. It just started writing itself. The protagonist, Cathy, told me her story. I find at times I am overwhelmingly sad or touched by the narrative. I hope I can touch readers with this book as much as it’s touched me. On the other hand, The Guestbook, for me, was a total sensual escape into a beautiful setting, wonderful food, and romantic love. Who wouldn’t want to go there?

 SJ: If you could only write one genre ever again upon pain of being sacrificed to Cthulhu, what would it be and why?

AH: Women’s fiction. It’s the genre that motivates me the most, both reading and writing. It also has such a diversity to it, from literary to romance

SJ: What’s your biggest frustration as a writer? What do you consider the downside, or is there one? Is there any cliché that makes you want to wring people’s necks?

AH: Not having enough time. With having to run a literary agency and a consulting business, I have trouble finding time to write my own books. The downside of writing is that you have to share it with someone else, which can be a vulnerable and painful experience.

SJ:If you had to be stuck in one of your own books/stories for the rest of your life, what would it be and why? If you had to stick a loved one in one of your own books, what would it be and why? An enemy?

AH: I’d be happy being stuck in The Guestbook as Lily, with her beautiful home, adoring husband, wonderful friends, and great food.

SJ:Do you think it’s possible to develop a sure-fire recipe/formula for success as a writer? Would you want to, or does that compromise the art or the fun of it?

AH: Absolutely not. There is no one formula that works for everyone. I also think success is very subjective. Sometimes just having someone write me about how much my book touched them is worth all the money. That said, it would be nice to have a sure-fire recipe for getting my book out to its audience, widespread.

SJ: Everyone has words of wisdom for young writers, so I’m not going to ask you about that. With a few unknown writers becoming success stories, a lot of people seem to think it’s an easy career choice. What would your words of wisdom be to these people?

AH: Writing is probably one of the hardest career choices and least likely for someone to make money and be successful at. Write for a joy of it and the pleasure of sharing your story with others. You can hope for success and desire to be a bestseller, but know in the end it is a long journey and if your heart is not in it, you’ll never see the finish line.
SJ: It seems like everyone likes to gang up on certain genres as being inferior, less meaningful, or cheap entertainment (especially if it’s speculative in nature). Make a case for the genre you write.

AH: First of all, I don’t see any genre as being inferior. If a book entertains a reader—brings hope, joy, escape, makes their life easier, makes them laugh, or just plain entertains—that is enough. I know that not everyone reads the genre I write in, nor will they enjoy them. However, I also know there are many people who respond to love stories and books that take them on a journey to another place, another time, and touch their heart.

  SJ: What do you want people to instantly think of when they hear your name or your work mentioned?

AH: I want people to think that my books will make them feel, make them think, and ask questions about life and love.

SJ: Please tell us about your latest/favorite work or a little bit about what you’re working on right now. It’s plug time, so go for it!

AH:  My new book, Always with You, takes place on the Russian River in 1977 Northern California. It has been extremely compelling to write and has been a great emotional journey. I’m excited to be able to share it.

I have also begun working on the sequel to The Guestbook, which is called Tea and Comfort. At this point, I have my characters, setting, and plot down, but I need to do more research to really pull the novel together.

In the first book, there are three women that become close friends: Lily, Kayla, and Jude. The Guestbook features Lily and her inheriting the bed and breakfast and leaving a troubled marriage to follow her passion and find herself. Tea and Comfort features Kayla, the owner of the local herb and tea shop. It will uncover her mysterious background. Without giving away too much from the first book, it deals with why she made the decisions she has in the past and her deciding whether she can love again.

 

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When not visiting local farmer’s markets or indulging her love for chocolate, Andrea Hurst is an author and literary agent. Her passion for books drives her to find and write stories that take readers on a journey to another place and leave them with an unforgettable impression. She is a developmental editor for publishers and authors, an instructor in creative writing at the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts, and a webinar presenter for Writers Digest. She lives with her dachshunds in the Pacific Northwest, on an island much like the fictional Madrona, with all of its natural beauty and small town charm. Her published books include The Lazy Dog’s Guide to Enlightenment and Everybody’s Natural Food Cookbook, and she co-authored A Book of Miracles. To learn more about Andrea and her books, visit http://www.AndreaHurst-author.com or http://www.andreahurst.com.

Website: http://andreahurst-author.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/andreahurstauthor

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/andreahurst_

Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6553580.Andrea_Hurst

Book on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16086669-the-guestbook

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Guestbook-Andrea-Hurst/dp/1478163143/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1361821429&sr=8-1&keywords=The+Guestbook+by+Andrea+Hurst

Loki’s Game by Siobhan Kinkade: Official Blog Tour

Published February 20, 2013 by admin

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Mythology. Romance. Intrigue. They’re all awesome parts of this really unique book, and I’m proud to be part of the Loki’s Game tour! And it’s not just because Siobhan would smack me if I said otherwise.  Seriously, this is an amazing book, and it’s one that you should check out right now. First, let’s take a look at what this book is about.

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Amazon    Barnes and Noble    ARe   Sugar and Spice

 

 

Unemployed museum curator Lily Redway responds to an advertisement in the newspaper, thinking she is applying for a job. On the other side of that small, black-and-white box waits two things: a fantasy world come to life and a man named Rowan Keir.

 Rowan is a man with many secrets. He is a shape-shifter, a descendent of old world mythology, and the guardian of a rare and valuable Nordic artifact. He is also being hunted by the god Loki and has spent the last six hundred years outsmarting and outrunning him.

 With the fury of Asgard on Rowan’s trail, Lily finds herself caught up in a real-life fantasy story, a love triangle, and an ages-old war that pitches her into a different world and one very hard truth: All is fair in love and war.

***

Sounds pretty cool, right? Well Siobhan has decided to grace us with her presence today and has an awesome guest post for all of us about the balance of writing sexy and not compromising plot.

***

Smexy Writing

First and foremost – thank you, Selah, for hosting me today. I love you more than chocolate, chickie! And by the time this is over, I’ll probably owe you a metric shit-ton of it, too.

About that title…Y’know, just because a book is romance doesn’t mean it can’t be intelligent. More times than I can count, I’ve picked up romance novels where the author has taken the literary low road. By that, I mean they have sacrificed interesting plot points in favor of cramming in more romantic mishmash. It really upsets me when I get hold of books like this, because I like the plot and characters as much if not more than the love story.

What’s more, romance novels don’t always have to follow a formulaic system. Mine certainly don’t. When I read romance, I want a great story, lots of action, and a special something to keep me turning pages. Naturally, I write the things I’d like to read. I like adventure. I love strong characters.

If you can’t tell, I’m not your average romance writer.

Let’s back up a minute. I should probably explain myself here. The term smexy isn’t just something I made up. It’s a real world in the romance realm. Smexy means two things – “smart” and “sexy”. And this book is just that.

With Loki’s Game, I wrote an urban fantasy novel. It just so happens that my urban fantasy novel has a strong romantic thread. I’ve twisted mythology, turned reality on its head, and ultimately brought together a pair of characters who desperately needed each other. It’s sexy – yes, it’s very sexy. But it’s also smart.

To write this book, I read eight as research. I spent hours online scouring the internet for different versions of the same Nordic myths and legends. I picked apart every version of every story I read until I found a way to make my idea fit into the mythology.  I just hope Loki forgives me for what I’ve done, because I’d hate to be next on his list.

It’s a smart book written for smart people who just happen to like romance.

When Rowan and Lily get it on, they do it with style.  And occasionally a little bit of mud… but mostly style. I can promise one thing about their trysts – they never appear without reason. I’m not the type that can write sex for the sake of sex… there has to be a reason. It has to fit. And I have to be happy with it.

This is where the sexy comes in.

Odd combination? Possibly. Doable? Definitely…in more ways than one. Want to know how? Read the book and find out.

***

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At a very early age, Siobhan developed a love of reading. By first grade she was on a fifth grade level, and by the time she was a teenager she spent every penny she earned on new books. Oddly enough she gravitated toward science fiction, fantasy and horror while avoiding the romance genre at all costs.  It wasn’t until her mother introduced her to Nora Roberts that she realized romance could be fun.

Not much has changed since then. She is still a voracious reader and recovering grammar junkie.

Left to her own devices, she plots interesting ways to seduce, frighten, and destroy. While she finds herself drawn to the dark and eerie, she is also very much a free spirit and hopeless romantic. With multiple stories in publication and several more on the way she spends her time writing happy-ever-afters for the underdogs.

Siobhan writes both contemporary and dark paranormal romance (and a little bit of fantasy and horror under another name, omitted to protect the guilty), much of it of a highly erotic nature. Having never really enjoyed reading romance, she finds writing it to be a cathartic act. By manipulating the characters, she can make the happy endings much more satisfying for herself, and hopefully for her readers as well.

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Solomon’s Throne by Jennings Wright – Another Excerpt

Published January 26, 2013 by admin

This excerpt comes from the present day storyline in the book.

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The path meandered side to side, made inexplicable turns, and seemed to be leading nowhere. Gideon had just about given up, thinking it must really be a game trail, when two small boys appeared on the path, walking in the opposite direction, with the ubiquitous yellow water jugs on their heads. Smiling shyly, they giggled as the muRungus passed by.

Bolstered by their appearance, Rei picked up her pace, and in five minutes they were in a small, four hut village. Old women sat at the doorways, tending small fires topped with cooking pots. Naked toddlers with beads around their waists played with rocks and sticks. One very elderly man was napping on a woven reed mat. When the Quinns walked into the center of the encampment, all but the sleeping man looked up in surprise.

Rei smiled and waved. The women nodded at her, but didn’t rise.

“English?” Rei asked.

The nearest woman shook her head. “Kwete.”

“Is that Swahili?” Gideon asked?

“I don’t think so. The people here are Shona… But I don’t speak Swahili anyway.”

Rei pantomimed driving a car. “Car?” she asked hopefully, although she didn’t see one, and there were obviously no roads. The woman shook her head again, starting to get amused.

“Airport?” Rei stuck her arms out and swooped around like a child playing at flying. The woman burst out laughing, hiding her mouth behind her hand.

Kwete.”

Several of the toddlers came over to join in the game, and a young girl grabbed Gideon’s hand and watched solemnly. Rei stopped in front of Gideon and shrugged.

“I’m out of ideas.”

“You’re pretty good at charades, though,” he said.

“Funny. So what do we do now?”

Gideon took off the two backpacks and set them on the ground. “We wait, I guess. There aren’t any young men or women here now. Someone is bound to come back, maybe for that food they’re cooking. There must be at least one villager who speaks English – it’s the official language of the country!”

Rummaging through the pack, he brought out two bottles of water. Immediately they were swarmed by the children calling, “Chokunwa!” One of the old women had gotten to her feet and was trying to shush them. Laughing, Gideon handed her one of the bottles and tried to repeat the word.

Chokunwa!” he said, and the woman laughed behind her hand again, her eyes crinkling.

 

Gideon and Rei rested for an hour on a reed mat given to them by the laughing woman. It was quiet and pleasant in the shade, and they were exhausted from their escape, so they dozed and chatted and tried to determine what to do next. Gideon knew that both Captain McMillan and the taxi driver would be concerned, the captain rather more than the driver, who would probably just shake his head at the crazy Americans. They had eluded the Congratio a Achalichus monks for the time being, but they still had to find a way to their plane, which was almost certainly being watched. Gideon had checked his phone and Rei’s, but they no longer had a signal. There wasn’t much to do but wait.

Finally, two young men walked into the village from the opposite direction of the trail that had led the Quinns there. Both had hoes over their shoulders, and they were talking and laughing as they came into the common area between the huts. When they spotted the muRungus they stopped and looked at the old woman, still sitting in the doorway. They conversed for minute or two, and then approached. Gideon and Rei stood up and nodded their heads in greeting.

“English?” Rei asked. One of the men nodded.

“Small English, from school.”

“We need to go to Masvingo. To town. Yes?” The young man consulted his friend.

“Masvingo far by walk. One day.” He held up a finger to make sure they understood.

“Does anyone have a car nearby?” Here Rei once again pantomimed driving, and the men laughed. Then they consulted again.

“Wife she work at hotel. Hotel have car. We go.”

Gideon and Rei both shook their heads, and the men looked confused, not sure if they had misunderstood the question.

“To town, not to hotel. Another way?” Rei asked hopefully. The men chatted for several minutes this time, one gesturing back towards the hotel, and the other to the north. Finally they seemed to reach a decision.

Hurudza…farmer there.” He pointed to the north. “He have truck, many truck. We go.” He smiled. This time the Quinns both nodded agreement.

The young man said, “Shumba,” and pointed to himself. “I am Shumba.” Gideon and Rei introduced themselves, and gathered up their few belongings.

Shumba called to the grandmother in the doorway and said something, accompanied by arm waving towards the north. The woman smiled, without showing teeth, and waved at the Quinns.

Oneka!” she called out.

“We go!” Shumba said happily, enjoying this change of pace.

 Solomons-Throne-E-Book-Final-1600-for-Amazon-and-BN(1)

An impenetrable safe is breached and a secret artifact is stolen. Containing information that could change the course of the world, its desperate owner sends Gideon Quinn, his head of security, and Gideon’s wife Rei, an art preservationist, to find it at any cost. What they discover is a clue to the lost throne of King Solomon, the real object of the theft. They are thrust out on an adventure that leads them halfway around the world. Following letters left by a Jesuit in 1681, they must weave through ancient sites along the Portuguese Spice Route, keeping ahead of a secret militant order that is determined to beat them to Solomon’s Throne.

Filled with fast paced action and having broad appeal, Solomon’s Throne is an ingenious treasure hunt adventure that sweeps the reader around the globe in a race against time.

bluebarn-jennings-9951 2(3)

Born and raised in Rockledge, Florida, Jennings spent her early years reading anything she could get her hands on, when she wasn’t spending time in and on the water. She won a prize in the 6th grade for her science fiction stories.

Jennings attended the University of the South and the University of Tampa, graduating with a B.A. in Political Science, and almost enough credits for B.A.s in both English and History. She spent time over the years doing various kinds of script doctoring, business writing, editing, and teaching writing, but mostly having and raising her family, homeschooling her children, owning and running a business with her husband, and starting a non-profit to Uganda.

Thanks to a crazy idea called NaNoWriMo Jennings got back into creative writing in 2011 and hasn’t stopped since. She’s written four novels and a screenplay in less than a year, with more ideas on the drawing board. She currently lives in North Carolina with her husband, also a writer, and two children, and travels extensively.

Author Links

 
Kindle Edition: http://www.amazon.com/Solomons-Throne-ebook/dp/B008NBRYV6/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1351777545&sr=8-3
Print Edition: http://www.amazon.com/Solomons-Throne-Jennings-Wright/dp/0985784016/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1351777545&sr=8-3
Print Edition – CreateSpace: https://www.createspace.com/3937851

My website is www.jenningswright.com
My writing blog is http://jenningswright.wordpress.com
My Twitter is @JenningsWright
My FB author page is www.Facebook.com/JSWwrites
My Independent Author Network page is http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/jennings-wright.html

 

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