Monthly Archives: December 2013

Winter Reads Book Blast and $100 Giveaway!

Winter Reads Cover
Sit back, relax in your favorite reading chair and enjoy 15 Winter Reads from 15 bestselling YA authors. There is something to delight every reader in this box set – paranormal romance, futuristic sci-fi, historical, time travel, and contemporary. Many of the Indelibles have given you access to both the first and second books in their series – you’ll be reading well into the New Year!

LIMITED TIME BOX SET – from 15 bestselling YA authors
ON SALE 12/29 – 1/11 for just $1.99

 

Amazon * Barnes & Noble

15 Winter Reads includes:

 
Iron Butterfly
The Iron Butterfly by Chanda Hahn
Escaping an experimental prison, Thalia tries to hide her past and her gifts, from her friends. But her past isn’t always easy to escape, especially when it hunts you down.
TrembleTremble (Celestra Series) by Addison Moore
Sixteen year-old, Skyla Messenger is a dead girl walking. When her newly remarried mother moves the family to Paragon Island, to a house that is rumored to be haunted, Skyla finds refuge in Logan Oliver, a boy who shares her unique ability to read minds.
ExiledExiled by RaShelle Workman
Venus wakes to find herself no longer on her home planet of Kelari, but on Earth with a week to get back or she’ll die.


Dragonfly Cover
Dragonfly by Leigh Talbert Moore
Gossip Girl meets VC Andrews in this contemporary family saga. Love, lies, and betrayal become the new normal when Anna enters the world of Jack and Lucy Kyser.
open minds
Open Minds and Closed Hearts by Susan Kaye Quinn
When everyone reads minds, a secret is a dangerous thing to keep.
untraceable
Untraceable by S.R. Johannes

When Grace’s forest ranger dad disappears on patrol, she fights town authorities, tribal officials, & nature to prove he’s alive. Torn between a new hot boy and cute ex, she heads into the wilderness to find her dad. Soon, she is caught in a web of conspiracy, deception, and murder.

Twitter * Facebook * Blog  * Goodreads

date an alien
How to Date an Alien and How to Break Up With an Alien by Magan Vernon
Alex Bianchi takes an internship at an alien operations center to pad her college applications but doesn’t plan on falling in love with one of its residents. But as Alex’s senior year progresses, everything changes and she can’t figure out if it is interstellar or if it is just time to break up with an alien.
flutter
Flutter of Luv by L.M. Preston
Dawn, the neighborhood tomboy, is happy to be her best friend’s shadow. Acceptance comes from playing football after school with the guys on the block while hiding safely behind her glasses, braces, and boyish ways. But Tony moves in, becomes the star Running Back on her school’s football team, and changes her world and her view of herself forever.
watchedWatched by Cindy M. Hogan
It takes more than a school trip to change Christy’s life. It takes murder.
clockwise
Clockwise and ClockwiseR by Elle Strauss
A follow up to Clockwise, Casey and Nate travel back in time and race against the clock to rescue Casey’s rebellious brother Tim from frontline battle in America’s civil war.
5.5"X8.5" Post Card TemplateGlimpse (Zellie Wells #1) and Glimmer (Zellie Wells #2) by Stacey Wallace Benefiel
While working together to figure out what their shared vision means, Zellie discovers that Benjamin is a worthy friend and mentor. If only he could keep his hands off of her – if only she wanted him to…
spy like meA Spy Like Me by Laura Pauling
After dodging bullets on a first date, Savvy must decide how far she’ll go to protect the ones she loves.
Grasping At Eternity by Karen Amanda Hooper
An eternal soul mate, a supernatural family who has known her for centuries, and lifetimes of erased memories: this is Maryah Woodsen’s life. She just doesn’t know it yet.
lacrimosaLacrimosa by Christine Fonseca
In the world of angels and demons, one thing is clear – some sacrifices should never be made. Even for love.
spruce knollThe Secret of Spruce Knoll by Heather McCorkle
The town of Spruce Knoll hides many secrets—and many dangers, among them are that the untimely death of Eren’s parents was no accident and that she is far more than she realizes.


Giveaway Details

$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends

1/11/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the authors. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


How I started writing seriously, got an agent, and other stuff

Once upon a time, my teen daughters complained about the required reading their English teachers assigned them in class. We spent a lot of time talking about what we loved to read, what made a good story, and what made one dry or boring.

This went on for months.

The more we talked, the more original story ideas our discussions produced. I’ve always been dramatic, always had a big imagination, and loved storytelling. If you write, you might be nodding right now, I don’t know. Anyway, after messing around a while, I decided to write my own story. And I did. Seventy thousand words of awesome premise and absolutely hideous writing. With no background in creative writing and a poor formal education, multiple learning disabilities remained a challenge. I had no clue what I was doing.

None.

BUT PEOPLE,  I LOVED DOING IT! The writing part. I just had to figure out how to do it well.

I used to dream some writer, who was further along than I was, would magically show up at my local Barnes and Noble and give me sage advice. I really did. That never happened. Then some gentle soul said, “Idiot! You need some help. You’re not allowed to write like Jane Austen anymore, with hundreds of pages of flowery description. Not if you want to get published. You need feedback from other writers, so you can learn. Your. Craft!”

Good advice. An though I would continue to write if I never published a thing, I hoped to someday see my stories in print. So, I persevered. I ended up joining some online critique sites and ultimately found an amazing group of women writers that form the bulk of my critique partners today. Thank you, Sisters of the Traveling Pens. You all rock baby kittens.

imagesCAKUM40E

They explained the definitions of common writing problems like, back-story, purple prose, superfluous descriptions, POV, slow pacing, flat characters, plot holes, conflict, and over use of the dreaded adverb.

Armed with new information, I wrote another book, a better one. My pen sisters shredded it. I rewrote and so on. Of course, in my ignorance, I continued to do everything wrong. I went to a writers conference and pitched my story to an agent. A really well known, super ninja agent. Oy.  She may have requested the partial out of sheer pity. I was visibly sweating and shaking, I was so nervous. She rejected the manuscript. She should have. It wasn’t ready. Did that stop me? Heck no, I edited my story (still wasn’t ready, people) and queried sixty agents at once. *sigh* Multiple rejections and non answers followed.

Back to the drawing board with another story that became my YA urban fantasy CRUX. After months of writing and rewriting, I queried J Taylor Publishing who accepted my story for publication. Yea! Thank you, J Taylor!

Yeah, that was beyond cool, but I still didn’t have an agent and my writing wasn’t as strong as I wanted it to be. I started several novels that I didn’t finish. I wrote another urban fantasy that I loved, but it had some issues. I grew weary of what always needed fixing. People kept saying, don’t write what you think will sell, write what you love.

What do I love … what do I love …?

I love young adult. I love southern gothic romances, alpha males, magic, and adventure. I love courageous heroes with attitude and feisty heroines that won’t quit.  Fairy tales and their retellings are a favorite, too. That was enough to inspire a brand new story. I wrote the sucker. Sent it to a few trusted beta readers who, again, gave me amazing advice. One of those betas suggested I query the lovely, amazing and talented Brittany Booker of the The Booker Albert Literary Agency. She asked for the full, read it, and a few days later offered me a contract. (Did I mention Brittany Booker is lovely, amazing and talented?) I did? Good. She is.

Wow. My eyes are still dilated from my talk on the phone … with my agent!

So, that’s how I got to this point—with a long way yet to go …

I’m sure I’m not saying anything new, but maybe that’s okay. Maybe it bears repeating that the overnight success stories we hear about are rarely that.  Reading about other writers who are pursuing their dreams challenges me to work harder.  I love reading about their ideas, triumphs, and yeah, even their failures—because mistakes say nothing more than that they had the guts to try.  These writers remind me to take heart, keep going, that it can take a long time, and that each new goal met really is worth the struggle. I guess that’s what inspired this post. The idea of hope.  And while much of writing is a solitary effort, it’s nice to remember we’re not alone. We wordsmiths are in this together.

Keep writing, people.

I’m cheering for us all.

imagesCAS5NFSZ


The Balborite Curse Book Blast and Giveaway!

balborite

The Balborite Curse

The Balborite Curse is the fourth book in Kristian Alva’s bestselling Dragon Stones Saga.
After five years of fragile peace, things are changing rapidly. The dwarf kingdom is crumbling into civil war in the midst of the worst clan schism in a thousand years. With the clans weakened by infighting, the entire dwarf kingdom is vulnerable to attack.
Tallin Arai, the dragon rider, must leave the desert and the city he loves when someone puts a bounty on his head. He suspects the Balborites–a fanatic cult that trains deadly mageborn assassins. He sets out on a journey to save the dwarves from civil war and stop the Balborite assassins once and for all. Is Tallin strong enough to save them all?

Barnes & Noble * Amazon

kristian

Author Kristian Alva

Kristian Alva was born into a family of writers and teachers. She worked as a staff writer and a ghostwriter before publishing her own manuscripts. She now writes young adult and middle-grade fantasy full-time. She currently lives in California with her husband and sons. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading all genres, especially epic fantasy.

Website * Blog * Facebook

Book Blast $50 Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 1/5/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


New release Paper Wishes by Jennifer M. Eaton is here!

Paper Wishes

Paper Wishes follows Jack and Jill on their journey from friendship to love over Christmas and New Years in two heartwarming stories.

Connect the Dots: Jill writes her most intimate Christmas wish to God—and throws it away for its ridiculousness—but Christmas wishes have a way of coming true, even when you don’t know what you’ve wished for.

A Test of Faith: One day after her Christmas wish comes true, Jill faces a wrenching choice that tests her deepest beliefs. Will love prevail over conviction, or is happiness nothing more than a fairytale?

Blurb:

Jill has no idea what she wants for Christmas, but when it looks like her best friend Jack is going to get exactly what he asks for, Jill makes a Christmas wish that will change both of their lives forever.

Excerpt:

I scrolled the words Dear Santa across the page. For crying out loud, how stupid is this?

“Come on, Mom,” Nicole said, placing a long fold in her letter. “It’s not that hard.”

I dropped my pen on the table. “It’s hard if you’re a grown-up.”

“Just write down what you want.” She bent and tucked the folds together, molding her letter into a perfect origami star.

“But I don’t want anything.”

Nicole held up her creation, scratching a freckled cheek. “Everyone wants something.” She fastened a paperclip to her star and hung it on the Christmas tree. The matte paper stood out from the bright glass ornaments.

I ran my fingers across my bare neckline. I’d love to have back the ornate silver and gold necklace that Nicole broke a few months ago, but I couldn’t write that. It would hurt her feelings.

“I’m too old to be writing to Santa,” I announced.

“Then write to God. He listens too.”

I narrowed my eyes. Stinker. “Okay…” I placed my pen on the sheet and crossed out Dear Santa. “Okay. Dear God.” I sighed. “It’s not helping. I still don’t know what to ask for.”

I threw my long, dark ponytail over my shoulder and tapped my pen across the sheet, leaving a wavy line of dots marring the clean, white-lined paper.

Nicole shook her head, jostling her auburn locks. “Come on, Mom. Just write something. It’s God. He already knows what you want.”

“Then can He tell me?” The rumble of the school bus granted me a temporary respite. “Grab your lunch.”

“Got it.” She tossed the brown bag into her backpack and grabbed her jacket off the back of the chair. “See you later, Mom.” The screen door slammed behind her, rattling the knickknacks on the shelf beside the door. The frigid December air swirled through the kitchen, pushing the paper across the table.

I tossed my pen to the side and poured myself another cup of coffee. Liquid heaven rolled down my throat. Well, day-old reheated liquid heaven. I tossed the rest down the sink. Coffee Stop drive-through here I come. I popped the last bit of toast into my mouth and grabbed my car keys.

The nearly empty sheet of paper shifted across the tabletop as I passed by. The words Dear God taunted me.

Writing the letter didn’t seem like a game anymore.

Dear God… it doesn’t get more serious than that.

What do I want? I hadn’t thought of it much since Bill took off on us. The pressure of being both Mommy and Daddy left little time for thinking about me. What I wanted was for Nicky to be happy. Nothing else seemed to matter.

I eased back down into my chair, picked up the pen, and began tapping it on the paper again. Another line of scrolling black dots appeared across the sheet. What do I want… really? My wrist flicked, and I wrote the word please.

I stared at the letters, and before I knew it a sentence had formed. Fifteen little words stared up at me, the blue ink solid and demanding on the white ruled page.

Permanent, but ridiculous.

It’s not even what I want. I crumpled the letter into a ball and tossed it over the counter. It scooted across the beige surface before slipping off and falling into the trashcan.

Done.

I’m too old for Christmas wishes anyway.

 ***

Paper Wishes is on sale now for just $.99!  Snuggle up with a great Christmas Romance today!

Click here to buy it now!

***

More Stories!

Make Believe

Last Winter Red:  In search of a husband, Emily leaves the safety of the city and risks her life stepping into the outside world.  What she finds there will question the foundations of everything she believes in. Available as part of the Make Believe anthology.

The First Day of the New Tomorrow

The First Day of the New Tomorrow: Maya dreams of having everything she wants, but when she gets it, she can’t give it back fast enough. (Coming in September, 2013 from Muse It Up)

  

Jennifer M. Eaton is a contemporary blender of Science Fiction, Dystopian, and Romance.  Her work ranges from the sweet contemporary romances of Paper Wishes, to the dystopian society of Last Winter Red and Optimal Red, with a dusting of young adult paranormal just for fun in The First Day of the New Tomorrow.

While not off visiting other worlds, Jennifer calls the East Coast of the USA home, where she lives with her wonderfully supportive husband, three energetic boys, and a pepped up poodle.

Full time team leader, full time mom, and full time novelist… what more can you ask for?  Writing help did you say?  Well, sure!  Jennifer hosts an informational blog aimed at helping all writers be the best they can be. Stop on by and chat. She loves to hear from fans! http://www.jennifermeaton.com/

Email | Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Manic ReadersGoodreads | Amazon

 

More Purchase Links:

Make Believe on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Make-Believe-ebook/dp/B00ACMPEGQ/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

Make Believe on Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/reviews/Make-Believe%2FJA-Belfield/1113844175

Paper Wishes : http://www.astraeapress.com/ – !/~/product/id=26814032


Need $100? Enter The Christmas Cracker Scavenger Hunt!

Welcome to the J. Taylor Publishing Christmas Cracker Scavenger Hunt!

Today, TEN J. Taylor authors are taking part in the Scavenger Hunt, which means there will be multiple chances to enter for a shot at an AWESOME GRAND PRIZE!

PLUS, there are more goodies up for grabs at EVERY stop along the way, too!

In fact, here’s MY mini-giveaway:

All you have to do is name your favorite Christmas movie in the comment section of this blog and you will be entered to win an EBOOK of REAPER by L. S. Murphy 

Congrats to Cassandra, winner of L.S. murphy’s REAPER!!!

Thanks to all who entered. Ya’ll rock!

 13504857

 BLURB:

There’s no way sixteen year old Quincy Amarante will become the fifth grim reaper. None. Not over her shiny blue Mustang. Her Jimmy Choos. Or her dead body.

She’s supposed to enjoy her sophomore year, not learn about some freaky future Destiny says she has no choice but to fulfill.

It doesn’t take long for Quincy to realize the only way out of the game is to play along especially since Death can find her anyway, anywhere, anytime. And does.

Like when she’s reassuring her friends she wants nothing to do with former best friend Ben Moorland, who’s returned from god-knows-where, and fails. Miserably.

Instead of maintaining her coveted popularity status, Quincy’s goes down like the Titanic.

Maybe … just maybe … that’s okay.

It seems, perhaps, becoming a grim reaper isn’t just about the dead but more about a much needed shift in Quincy’s priorities—from who she thinks she wants to be to who she really is.

You have until midnight of Friday 20th December 2013 to enter, after which a winner will be selected using Random.org

Good luck!

And back to the …

So … the GRAND PRIZE?

Enter in the Christmas Cracker Scavenger Hunt, and you could win $100 Giftcard prize.

just in time for Christmas!

Yep: $100 Giftcard prize.

Still got last minute shopping to grab? Fancy treating yourself as a reward for surviving yet another year?

Here’s your chance.

In order to enter, you will need to answer a variety of questions. There are ELEVEN questions in total—so eleven chances to win—and you will find ONE question on EACH of the nine other participating author blogs plus the J. Taylor blog.

As for the eleventh? Well, that one’s below:

Question: On which mythology is my YA novel CRUX based?

If you need help, here’s a hint: You can find the answer in red  >> HERE!

And you can enter in the Rafflecopter form below.

Good luck!

And don’t forget to enter the NEXT STOP on the Hunt for another chance to enter!

Don’t worry if you get lost. Simply hop back to the J. Taylor Blog by clicking on the link or either of the Hunt buttons, where you can find the complete list of authors and links.

Rafflecopter Giveaway

~~~~~

Terms & Conditions of E-Book Giveaway

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Lastly, here is the Rafflecopter code/link:
Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Link:
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/abafc927/


One More Day Blog Tour and Giveaway!

ONE MORE DAY

One More Day

By L.S. Murphy, Erika BeeBe, Marissa Halvorson, Kimberly Kay,

J. Keller Ford, Danielle E. Shipley, and Anna Simpson

                        Back of the Book:

What if today never ends?

What if everything about life—everything anyone hoped to be, to do, to experience—never happens?

Whether sitting in a chair, driving down the road, in surgery, jumping off a cliff or flying … that’s where you’d be … forever.

Unless …

In One More Day, Erika Beebe, Marissa Halvorson, Kimberly Kay, J. Keller Ford, Danielle E. Shipley and Anna Simpson join L.S. Murphy to give us their twists, surprising us with answers to two big questions, all from the perspective of characters under the age of eighteen.

How do we restart time?

How do we make everything go back to normal?

The answers, in whatever the world—human, alien, medieval, fantasy or fairytale—could, maybe, happen today.

Right now.

What would you do if this happened … to you?

Excerpt from “The 13th Month” by L.S. Murphy coming soon in ONE MORE DAY!

December 31st, 2013 4:01pm

“Stop being a douche, Jackie. This end of the world crap is nothing but a load of … well, crap. Get over it.” I snatched our shared laptop from my little brother and closed the lid, not bothering to check out the site he’d become fixated on during the last hour. Jackie’s conspiracy theories were a constant pain in my ass.

“Give it back, Nixon.” He whined, reaching across my body as I shoved the ancient computer behind my back. “This one’s real. I’m telling you; it’s gonna to happen.”

“Just like you said Rapture was real, right? Or the Mayan prophecy of December twenty-first in two-thousand twelve?” I shoved his thirteen-year-old body away from me. “Guess what, dipshit? Twenty-twelve has come and gone with the world still spinning. Get outta here so I can chat with my girl.”

Jackie stood, brushing invisible dirt of his green plaid shorts. In a few years, he’d either be modeling or coming out of the closet. I swore my brother got all the looks in the family—Mom’s California blonde hair, Dad’s bright blue eyes, and

at least two inches taller than I was.

Me? I inherited Dad’s brown hair that curled if it got too long and Mom’s brown eyes the color of dry dirt. In other words, boring.

“One of these days, you’ll believe me,” Jackie said, his voice deeper than normal. His eyes sparkled like ice held up to a light bulb. “The end is coming. Everything will stop. And there’s nothing you can do to prevent it.”

“Dude, did you forget your Zoloft, or something? What’s with the voice?” I fell onto my twin bed, wishing for the millionth time I had my own room. The computer lay across my

thighs, warming the denim beneath it.

Flipping me the bird, Jackie left the room and slammed our door behind him, rattling the windows from the force. The little shit must’ve started lifting weights. I glanced over to his half of the room but saw no sign that my brother had suddenly decided to add to his martial arts workout. Instead, his side was spotless, with a perfectly made bed, organized desk, laid-out clothes, and his lined-up tae kwon do ribbons. Jackie switched disciplines when he was seven, while I stuck with karate. I would’ve quit, but girls thought it was sexy. Laura included.

My shit was less than perfect. A box shoved into the closet hid my wrinkled karate ribbons. Homework and textbooks littered my desk. Even our matching blue plaid comforters were opposites—mine faded and wrinkled, his smooth and bright like the day Mom bought it.

Shaking my head, I opened the laptop and typed in the password. Laura was far more important than worrying about what was up little bro’s butt. Especially since we had big plans that night. Her parents would be out ringing in twenty-fourteen at some hotel soiree, leaving the house to us. Alone. Six years of crushing on her and six months of dating her were leading to what I hoped would be the best night of my life.

Enter to win!

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/N2ViZjFlOGQyNmRkZmNiNGJlZjgwYTM5Y2Y3MzM1OjA=/

About L.S. Murphy: L.S. Murphy lives in the Greater St. Louis area where she watches Cardinals baseball, reads every book she can find, and weaves tales for teens and adults. When not doing all of the above, she tends to The Bean (aka her daughter), her husband and a menagerie of pets. She is the author of romance novellas  A Reason to Stay  and Neighbors.  Her debut novel Reaper, a YA paranormal romance, is now available.

L.S. Murphy

NEIGHBORS (Coming November 2013 ~ Entangled Publishing)

A REASON TO STAY (Calliope ~ an imprint of Musa Publishing)

http://lsmurphy.com/

She is a member of Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and the St. Louis Writer’s Guild.

Links: Website: http://lsmurphy.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LSMurphy

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LSMurphyAuthor

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5046440.L_S_Murphy

Tumblr: http://lsmurphybooks.tumblr.com/

Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/l-s-murphy/12/218/140


Alexander Nader is actually pretty funny: Guest Post

Hey guys!

Thrilled to have guest blogger and author Alexander Nader on the  site today! Let me introduce him first, and then we’ll get to it … 

He looks so normal, right? I thought so, too. Just wait … but first, his bio … 

http://alexnaderwrites.wordpress.com

Alex lives in the tourist infested hills of east Tennessee with his amazing wife/muse and three superb children. He would tell you more about how awesome they are, but you probably wouldn’t believe him. When he’s not hanging out with them he’s making pizzas. When he’s not doing that he’s working at a bookstore and occasionally he jots a few words down. He’s a big fan of good music, good storytelling, and mixed martial arts.

He once wrote a short story about pirates to his wife via text message that blossomed into a full length novel and never stopped after that.

And so, without further ado, I give you the very entertaining, Alex Nader …

Hello boys and girls, ladies and gentlemen. Julie has asked me to drop by this nice little space of hers and share some words with y’all. It’s okay, don’t be scared. Well, yes, I do spit when I talk, but you are on the opposite end of the internets; I don’t think my spittle will affect you other there. And technically I’m typing. I don’t spit when I type. That would be weird. Probably just drooling at that point, right? Eh, you can debate it in the comments in between calling me dumb or curly haired or something. Fair enough?

Now that’s over with, I can type about what I hiked my lazy bum over here to type about. Over here to the keyboard that is. Not to your house because we’ve already established, the internets. Stuff’s everywhere. So. I want to talk about voice with you guys. I’m going to talk about it in the writing sense, but I need any kids reading this to understand it can be applied to life too.

The first novel I wrote sucked. The world I built was cool and the characters were mostly interesting and the plot was acceptable, but it still sucked. Same thing with the second novel I wrote. You wanna know why? It’s because I wrote how I thought a book should sound, not how I sound. I held back things I would normally say because they didn’t seem literary. I added stuff I wouldn’t normally say because it sounded literary. The result: two terribly worded novels. Yup, it was a complete waste of a hundred-seventy thousand words or so.

My third book I told myself to forget about everything and write how I wanted to write. I wrote my book. You know what happened? It got picked up by a publisher and they asked for two follow up novels. There were even multiple publishers asking to read it. All attention my first two books didn’t come close to, simply by being myself.

I found my voice and people kind of liked it. Some people probably hate my voice. None of those people are around to vouch for that though. Why? Because I put them in a blender to make protein shakes. What? I said I found my voice, I didn’t say I took criticism well.

My point for all this is simple. If you are an author, write your book for you first. If you want to be published then find a publisher that appreciates your voice. Find fans that like and want more of what you have to say. There are so many sub-genres and indie everythings out there that you can find like minded people. I’m sure of it.

Bigger point: if you are a teen reading this and putting up with the treacheries of high school, find and listen to your voice. Inner and outer. Listen to the voice in your head that tells you what’s right. Don’t look at me like that, there are voices in your head too. I’m not crazy. *pushes the men in white coats away and keeps typing* Let your inner voice guide your outer voice. Speak as yourself. It’s scary and I’m not going to lie, you’re probably not always going to do it. I didn’t. Don’t get me started on how many times I should have listened to myself and didn’t. There was this one time. Wait, no. What are you doing? Get your hands off me! *Shoes squeak against linoleum as the men in white coats drag me back to my nice room*

His new book … 

Beasts of Burdin

Release Date: February 10, 2014  Adult, Urban Fantasy

Add it to your Good Reads list here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17826395-beasts-of-burdin?ac=1

Blurb:

Demon hunter Ty Burdin hung up his guns, knife, trench coat and fedora a year ago. Bags packed, hands washed of all demon politics, he’s done. Forever.

In fact, to get far far away, he dragged Nora, his rockabilly secretary, from Miami to the Tennessee mountains where he’s lived a life of peace—if peace can be defined as drowning in scotch and taking private eye jobs to keep the lights on. Jobs for real people. Not demons.

No demons.

He’s retired from that. Remember?

Demon hunters aren’t a dime a dozen, though, and when Ty’s brother asks him for a favor—just one—what’s a brother to do? Agreeing to take down one hillbilly demon shouldn’t take that long. In. Decapitate. Out. Favor complete. Back to the office where Nora and his bottle of whiskey are waiting.

Unfortunately for Ty, staying retired doesn’t seem to be in the cards, and an avalanche of bad luck draws him right back to an agency he despises and the career that nearly cost him his sanity.

This time, Ty has no way out and will have to face his own demons just to survive.

Excerpt:

“Ty Burdin! Answer the phone already. It’s your brother.” The voice comes from the next room in a tone usually used by stress-fried mothers, not twenty-something-year-old receptionists. The harsh words crack through my whiskey-soaked brain like someone snapped a bullwhip in my ear. I pick my head up off the desk and wipe the drool from my mouth, as she bursts in the door.

“He’s adopted, and good morning,” I say, opening the drawer to my desk and digging through it.

“It’s not morning. It’s past noon, you lazy drunk.” Her tone is accusing, but there’s a slight smile to her ruby red lips. I really do think Nora gets enjoyment from trying to keep me in line. Her rockabilly style, all tattoos and polkadots, might scare some people off, but honestly, I think it’s kind of cool.

“Fine, I was wrong about the time, but you’re wrong, too,” I say.

“Oh, yeah? How’s that?” Nora kicks her hip to the side and props a hand on her leopard print skirt.

“I’m not drunk. I’m hungover.” I pull out a flask full of scotch and take a long drink. “I’m working on getting back on track, though.” I tip the flask toward her.

“I swear someone’s gonna find you in a ditch one day.” Her voice has a trace of concern, but it’s mostly drowned out by annoyance.

“In my line of work, that’s almost a guarantee. Now, can you tell me why you disturbed my ugly sleep?” Ugly sleep is a gross understatement. No amount of alcohol ever seems to drown out the vision of the young, innocent girl burned into my memory. The scene is even more ominous in my dreams than it was in real life.

A thunderclap breaks the silence of my memories. Nora stares down at me, hands stuck together. “Wake up, drunkard. Hartnet’s been trying to reach you on the phone for the past fifteen minutes.”

The pocket of my jacket buzzes, probably been ringing the entire time. Nora walks over to where it hangs by the door and withdraws the phone. “Jesus, Ty. You’ve got four missed calls, ten new messages, and over twenty emails. Do you ever check this thing?”

“No.” I have the phone, but honestly, I hate it.
Nora sets the still ringing phone on my desk, puts her hands on her hips and, using only facial expressions, guilts me into picking up.

“Hello,” I say into the phone that smells of smoke. I use my free hand to dig out cigarettes and a lighter.

“Ty! Finally, man, where you been?” Hartnet asks.

“Oh, you know me. I just got back from hiking the Swiss Alps with Edmund Hillary.”

“Real funny, Ty, but I imagine you’ve been spending more time with Jim or Jack.”

“God, no, I hate southern whiskey,” I say. “I prefer a fine scotch, Macallan to be specific.”

“You prefer whatever’s in front of you as long as there’s a proof label on the bottle,” Hartnet says.

I don’t have any argument for that. “So, what do you want?”

Thanks  for stopping by today, Alex! Loved having you here 🙂