October 31, 2013

Death's Call: A Spooky Halloween Story

Today, I wanted to share my spooky Halloween story that first appeared earlier this month on Gin's Book Notes. If you haven't checked out her blog, please do. And follow her on Facebook. She's a friend to authors and readers alike.

Never Answer Death's Call

Darkness was everywhere. Thud. Thud. Thud. My heartbeat, deafening as it quickened, was the only sound. As my eyes adjusted to the blackness, I realized I was in a narrow passageway. Roots and dirt surrounded me.

Cramped and terrified, I squeezed my eyes shut. “Wake up, before it’s too late.” A voice I didn’t know echoed in my head. My eyes flew open. Still, there was nothing.

Panic set in. Then, I heard it. A noise like nails on a chalkboard, and it was getting closer. An eerie voice began to chant my name.

“Don’t answer the call.” The voice from before. I moved forward, pushing away roots and spider webs to clear my path. My hand reached out just in time to keep me from running into a wall. A dead end.

Again, my name wafted toward me. This time, it was my mother’s voice.

Relief flooded through me. I turned and started to answer her. Before I could utter a sound, someone grabbed me from behind and clamped a hand over my mouth. A voice, so close to my ear I could feel the breathing, whispered, “Death is tricky. Never answer. He’ll take you.”

( ^_^ ) ( ^_^ ) ( ^_^ ) ( ^_^ ) ( ^_^ )

Many years ago, I had this dream and awoke to my mom shaking me. When I told her about it, she said her grandmother once told her that you should never answer a voice calling to you in the night because it was Death.

When my children were young, I would shiver whenever they called out to me at night. After all, Death is tricky.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I love Halloween! My middle daughter has many dangerous food allergies, so Halloween can be tricky. Years ago, someone told me about the Switch Witch. Every year, my girls pick their favorite 10-15 pieces of candy and the rest gets left out for the Switch Witch. She then comes and takes the candy and leaves a little prize in its place.

What's your favorite part of Halloween?

Oh, and there's one day left to win a signed copy of Chasing Memories on Gin's blog. Find the giveaway here.

October 30, 2013

Shaking It Off: ROW80 & NaNo Prep

This week I am preparing for the start of NaNoWriMo on Friday. Only 2 days left!

Earlier today, I ran across this article on the UTopYA Facebook page: 10 Things That Should Never Stop You From Writing Your Story. Just the encouragement I needed before busting out 50,000 words.

Of the ten, two struck my insecurity chord the most: fear of finishing and fear that someone else could tell it better.

I am an avid reader. For the most part, that makes me a better writer. But it also reminds me how much amazing talent is out there. Then, my insecurity beast rears his ugly head and starts picking away at my confidence.

As far as the fear of finishing, it's more of a fear of finishing well. I have very high expectations of my writing. My fear is that I re-read it in mid-December and not love it.

*shakes it off*

Okay, no time for insecurity right now. I need to focus on writing. After all, there's no book to fret over if I don't write it.

Today and tomorrow, my goal is to do as much pre-planning I can. My November goals for A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) are simple.

* Announce my updated word total
* Stay on top of my sponsorship duties

And to keep the insecurity monster at bay, I plan to write first each day. As a reward for doing that, I will play (whether it's a good book, a good movie/TV show, time with my kids) to rejuvenate. After all, all work and no play...

October 28, 2013

Nearing the Start: ROW80

November 1 is Friday!

I'm only slightly stressing out about writing 50,000 words in November for NaNoWriMo. Yes, I finished last year, but there's always one element that terrifies me more than any other... Life.

Life likes to toy with the best laid plans. I've tried to do as much as possible to ensure plenty of writing time, but...

* I do have three children and cold and flu season is approaching.
* I am going to New York City 11/2-5 to hang out with girlfriends and support a friend who is running the New York Marathon.
* My parents are coming out for Thanksgiving week, and it will be their first time in my CA home.

It's like when I run a race--I'm the most anxious waiting for it to begin. No matter how much you train, anything can happen on race day, and it always makes me queasy. But once the starting horn goes off, I settle in and have faith in my preparations.

Same for NaNo. I've pre-written blog posts, outlined plot points for my book, and cut down on any other commitments for the month. Now, I just need a bit of luck to go with my determination.

So, please wish me luck!

It's Monday, and time for my A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) update. Since I only blog Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I post my Sunday updates on Mondays.

My biggest goals for this week:
* Write a few more November posts.
* Set up my website.
* Cull through emails and to-dos.

Assuming you all enjoy sales as much as I do, Chasing Memories is only $2.99 on Kindle for a limited time (originally $3.99). So pick up a copy if you haven't, or gift a copy. The price will start later today.

October 25, 2013

Should Your Characters See a Psychiatrist?

Recently, I read a wonderful book with an interesting concept. A male writer seeks out a psychiatrist (who was also a writer) to help him figure out some problems with his main character.

It left me intrigued.

Reagan, my main character in the Tala Prophecy series, sees a psychiatrist in Chasing Memories. It was a fun way to have my character evaluated. But how much more fun would it be to go to a psychiatrist and talk about my character's (or characters') issues. Heck, I could even pretend to be my character... but before anyone thinks I've gone off the deep end, I'll stick with my first idea.

So, am I crazy or is this a really interesting idea?

Maybe a psychiatrist out there could start picking apart characters for writers. Just thinking out loud here. :-)

Oh, and the book was The Hourglass by Sharon Struth. Read the review here.

Of course, in The Hourglass, it turned out the character's issues were deeply rooted in the author's. So I guess the simpler solution would be for me to seek out therapy.

October 24, 2013

More Questions than Answers: ROW80

A very late Wednesday post for me.

My goal for the rest of this month is to do as much prep work as I can before November's NaNoWriMo. That includes pre-writing some posts and getting my commitments in order (I spent four hours yesterday weeding through emails and answering as necessary) in addition to writing down story ideas for my NaNo project.

I am a pantser. I'm okay with that, but it makes prep work difficult. Instead of outlining, I decided to just bullet point events I wanted to happen.

But then I ended up with more questions than answers.

I'd write down a plot point and then my mind would explode with...

If A happens, then B is affected and C makes no sense so D must happen before A and then Z might change.

To say the least, my brain is fried.

For now, I'm trying to make note of any questions that arise, and then deal with them as I'm writing--which is how I deal with plot issues/questions.

Any other suggestions for dealing with the mind-blowing questions?

I'll do a more thorough A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) check in on Monday. But I'm hoping all my ROW80 and NaNo buddies are getting along well.

Oh, and I would love more NaNo buddies. Find me here.

October 21, 2013

Faerie War Release Day Blitz & ROW80 Update

I'm thrilled to celebrate Rachel Morgan's release day blitz for The Faerie War today in addition to my ROW80 Update (bottom of post).

It's party time!!! 
Today is the official online release of Rachel Morgan's third Creepy Hollow novel, The Faerie War. After that cliffhanger at the end of the second book, fans can finally find out what happens to Violet and everyone else in Creepy Hollow. If you'd like to get your copy, you can find it at the following online stores, plus a few others:

There are seven other teaser images displayed on various blogs today. If you'd like to see them, you can visit the following fabulous bloggers:

And there's a major giveaway going on!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) Update

I have a few goals to focus on leading up to NaNo.

  • Outline at least 30 things I want to happen in my ms for use during NaNoWriMo (TiaBach, if you want to buddy me).  Thanks to Kim Switzer for this idea. For more great ideas, please visit her NaNo Planning 2013 post. ---> So far I've made a list of 10 good events.
  • Use #ROW80 word sprints (11amPST/2pmEST) to work on events and outlining for NaNo piece. ---> Plan to start today.
  • Perform weekly ROW80 sponsor duties. ---> Will catch up later today.
  • Get website set up. ---> On my to do list for tomorrow.
  • Cull through emails and finish up to dos as necessary. ---> Made some progress on this last week. The problem is that to dos never stop flowing in, so it feels like a task that can never really be complete.
  • Get Depression Cookies on Smashwords. ---> Will do this week.

  • Please take a moment and enter Rachel's giveaway above. You can win an eBook of Chasing Memories among other things.

    October 18, 2013

    Death's Call: Death as a Character

    As part of the Something Wicked Returns event, Ginny at Gin's Book Notes asked if I would write a guest post. One of the suggestions was to write about a spooky personal story. So I shared an eerie one about Death's call: Never Answer Death's Call.

    I hope you'll stop by and read it. Plus, you can enter to win a signed paperback copy of Chasing Memories while you are there.

    When I was writing the piece, I got to thinking... what books have featured Death as a character?

    I loved The Book Thief, but that's the only one I could think of. Curiosity got the best of me, and I scoured the Internet. I was surprised to find only a few books claiming Death as a character: Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman and On a Pale Horse (Incarnations of Immortality, Book 1) by Piers Anthony. Milton's Paradise Lost was also mentioned (but someone noted Death is only mentioned once).

    Death seems like such an intriguing character to me. So, what am I missing... are there other books with Death as a character?

    Also, if you haven't had a chance, please stop by and listen to my YAPodcast (Episode 13). In addition to talking about the young adult genre, I answered questions about how I pick my characters' names and what inspired Chasing Memories. Plus, I read the prologue.

    October 16, 2013

    Books on Fire & ROW80 Update

    Happy Wednesday!

    I wanted to share a wonderful podcast that I was fortunate to take part in yesterday. Amy Jones, a great YA author herself, does a weekly podcast featuring indie young adult authors. My favorite part... she has the authors read an excerpt from their books. What a great way to give readers a taste. Would hearing a great excerpt encourage you to buy a book?

    If you get a chance, check out my interview and reading: Episode 13. While you are there, check out some of the other authors. I've listened to several and really enjoyed them. Plus, I'm giving away an eBook copy of Chasing Memories.

    Wednesdays are also for A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) updates.

    My kids have a whole day of half days this week for conferences, so they are all home each day by 11:45am. Loving it, but it's not leading to much productivity. Still, I found time to do a podcast and write down some thoughts for my NaNo project.

    And I've read three books this week already. It helped that two of them were Strength and Courage by Carrie Butler, the first two in her Mark of Nexus series. So excited for book 3. (see my reviews here)

    I'm behind on my sponsorship duties but will catch up today. Looking forward to it.

    October 15, 2013

    Supernova by Elizabeth Sharp: Release Day Blitz

    I am excited to share Elizabeth Sharp's Supernova with everyone today. Love the cover! And, I'm so looking forward to reading it. I'll be reviewing it next week on my review blog, Mom in Love with Fiction.

    Without further ado...


    On Cleo’s first day at St. Aloysius Gonzaga Academy, things get pretty weird pretty fast. After being confronted by a strangely hostile boy, she meets two girls and instantly bonds with them. Before long danger threatens the entire student body, in the form of a soul eating possessor fae. When her brother is savagely beaten and left in a coma, the girls decide to use their fae powers to become superheroes and stop the possessions.

    They quickly learn things are a lot more complicated than they had ever imagined. A government plot that had begun when they were infants endangers them all, and a demented former soldier bent on revenge is after them. The line between friend and foe has become so blurry, Cleo has no idea who she can trust. Will their superhero plot help them save the day, or just get them killed?

    Buy Links

    About the Author:
    Elizabeth has a near crippling Facebook addiction, dwarfed only by her need for Dr. Pepper. A self-proclaimed techno geek, she loves cell phones, computers, tablets and all things technological. The internet has to be the greatest invention since the wheel, in her opinion. She lives in a quiet subdivision with her husband, one-year-old son, three cats, and far too many electronics. It’s quite possible she has some raccoon in her DNA, because she loves glitter and anything that sparkles. She enjoys making jewelry and costumes. Halloween is her favorite holiday since it’s the one day of the year that you can be whatever you want. But her first love will always be writing. Otherwise, hearing voices in her head would make her feel schizophrenic.

    October 14, 2013

    Planning to Survive NaNo: ROW80 Update

    Who knew that watching an episode of Vampire Diaries would be so enlightening?

    A new arc this season involves Katherine, a long-time vampire and the original girl-to-fight-over for vampire brothers Stefan and Damon, being human (she ingested a human potion at the end of last season).

    In last week's episode, which I just watched late last night, she said:
    "I survived childbirth, the death of my entire family, and 500 years of running from an immortal hybrid. You can understand why I'm a little upset that I'm on the verge of being defeated by a sinus infection."

    First, I laughed. Then, I realized two things.

    One, as a writer, we need to constantly look at things differently and present the reader with the same experience. Sure, a vampire is interesting. But a vampire who has been around for centuries suddenly struggling to be human is even more interesting. It's the human condition, after all, that we all face.

    Second. I am human. I have survived childbirth (3 times), cross-country moves (more times that I care to admit to, but most recently this summer), health issues and scares, and on and on.

    Now, I just need to survive another NaNo. To do that, I need to reevaluate my A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) goals. But that's what is so wonderful about this challenge... we have to accept Life's machinations and react accordingly.

    New Goals until November
    • Outline at least 30 things I want to happen in my ms for use during NaNoWriMo (TiaBach, if you want to buddy me).  Thanks to Kim Switzer for this idea. For more great ideas, please visit her NaNo Planning 2013 post.
    • Starting next week, use #ROW80 word sprints to plan my ms. This week, my kids have half days all week. Home by 11:50am each day.
    • Perform weekly ROW80 sponsor duties.
    • Get website set up.
    • Cull through emails and finish up to dos as necessary.
    • Get Depression Cookies on Smashwords.
    Once November hits, there will be one main goal... writing an average 1,667 words a day. So I need the rest of this month to get my affairs in order. Wait, that sounds so dire.

    So my NaNo project will be Chasing Memories 2. What I've been working on turned into another character's show. It's the first time that has happened to me. Guess there will be a Chasing Memories novella now, too. Stay tuned!

    October 11, 2013

    So Much Good TV, So Little Time

    This Fall TV season is going to be the death of me. So many great shows and old favorites and so little time. I'm sure some of the new shows will fall off my radar after a bit, because I simply can't keep up with them all.

    But, for now, I'm overloading myself. And I'm enjoying it!

    Some thoughts...

    New Shows

    Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

    I've been entertained so far, but I'm jonesing for some more superheroes. I get that our favorites can't be on there week after week (although I'm salivating for some Thor, Ironman, Captain America, and on and on), but give me some new superheroes. I'm liking this agent/double agent thing going on with the hot guy (can't remember his name) and Skye.

    Once Upon a Time in Wonderland

    Hooked already. Love that they are mixing Aladdin, one of my favorite Disney movies, elements with Alice in Wonderland themes. So excited to see where they go with it. Plus it helps that Cyrus/the Genie is hot!

    Sleepy Hollow

    So intense and exciting. I wasn't sure what to expect from this one, but I like that it's not campy and it's going for some frights. Plus, I'm looking forward to the dynamic of the sisters and more backstory about Lt. Abbie Mills' Sheriff guardian.

    Witches of East End

    I was really looking forward to a good witch series this season, but I'm not sure this is it. The concept is interesting, but I found the acting less than stellar. How can that be with stars like Julia Ormond and Virginia Madsen? A bit disappointed. But I'm not giving up yet. Hoping it gets better.

    The Originals

    I was devastated with what happened to Elijah. Klaus without a conscience is not what I want. When he was in love with Caroline on Vampire Diaries, I was much more intrigued with his character. If Klaus is all bad, I'm all out. Bring back Elijah to add heart. The picture I've included gives me hope that... 1) Caroline will still be involved and 2) Klaus will still be interesting.

    The Blacklist

    I tuned in solely for James Spader (yes, I'm a child of the 80s), but I'm staying because of some great episodes. That and wanting to find out more about Elizabeth Keen's connection to Raymond "Red" Reddington and the story behind her husband. There's a real Silence of the Lambs feel to the show--a pretty high compliment.

    New to Me


    I've missed previous seasons, but my superhero-obsessed daughter asked me to watch the first episode of this season. I know a bit about Green Arrow, so I wasn't completely lost. Still, I was left scratching my head quite a bit. I barely have time to keep up with what I'm currently watching, so I doubt I'll have time to go back to old seasons. So, I hope I get in a groove soon on this one.

    Old Favorites

    Once Upon a Time

    This is one of those rare shows that we all sit down and watch as a family. I'm so excited about an Emma and Captain Hook romance, so I hope I'm not disappointed.

    Vampire Diaries

    So much was squeezed into one hour. Crazy! But I'm not loving Elena as a college student. She is an immortal. Does she really need to go to college right now with Stephan missing and her brother, Jeremy, being back from the dead? Oh, and a super hot, they-finally-figured-it-out love affair with Damon. Come on! Loving Katherine's comeuppance. Being a human ought to teach her something.

    The Voice

    Okay, I need something light. I love the brotherly bickering between Blake Shelton and Adam Levine. I'm kind of done with American Idol, dance shows, and never really got into the X Factor.

    On DVR
    but haven't had time to watch yet

    The Borrowed People, Person of Interest, and Castle.

    So, and I'm afraid to ask, what am I missing out on? If you watch any of the shows above, do you agree/disagree with my thoughts?

    Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

    October 9, 2013

    Great $0.99 Bundle & ROW80 Update

    It's Wednesday, and the first ROW80 update for this round. But before I get to that, I wanted to share this great boxed set.


    7--Yes! SEVEN BESTSELLING AUTHORS illuminate the dark, dangerous choices people make when everything that matters is on the line… 

    7 Bestselling full-length novels all for $.99--Yes! NINETY-NINE CENTS!


    CJ Lyons, MJ Rose, Melissa Foster, Russell Blake, Kathleen Shoop, Jenna Bennett, and Katia Lief give you thrilling tales, erotic confessions, spine-tingling twists, smothering fog, family secrets, and unexpected loss that all lead to DESPERATE ACTS. 



    A Round of Words in 80 Days Update

    * Write 1,000 words a day Monday through Thursday through October 31. Then, I plan to join NaNoWriMo. I did NaNo last year, and I found it focused me to keep writing first in my to do list. For that challenge, I need to complete 50,000 words in the month of November.

    I averaged 1,000 words yesterday and today. So I'm going to amend my goal... Average 1,000 words a day Monday through Friday. Added a day, but being a bit more flexible with the average.

    * I will attend #ROW80 word sprints (2:00pm EST on Twitter) at least three days a week. More if I can. This supports my writing goal.

    So far, I've been there Tuesday & today, so I'm on schedule.

    * Finish 25 books to meet my GoodReads reading goal of 100 books this year.

    Finished one this week so far and about to finish another.

    I'm going to keep the main goals simple. But if my reading and writing goals are met for each day:

    * Perform my ROW80 sponsorship duties.
    * Visit blogs and be social on Twitter and Facebook.
    * Write reviews and share book news here and on Mom in Love with Fiction.
    * Put Depression Cookies on Smashwords (it's ready, I'm behind).
    * Get my author website up and running (in process).
    * Editing. (3 hours so far this week)

    Check out the other ROW80 authors here. Hope everyone is kicking off Round 4 with lots of checkmarks.

    October 8, 2013

    Trusting You by LP Dover Release Day Blitz

    Today, I'm thrilled to be hosting LP Dover for the release of her newest novel, Trusting You. And, I'm excited to be reading it as well. The review will be posted on 10/17 on my Mom in Love with Fiction review blog.

    Without further ado...

    About Trusting You

    I trust you …
    These are the three words that Melissa Ashford wishes she could say to someone; to the one person she can fully give herself to and not worry about being betrayed. Being twenty-eight years old and divorced from a cheating ex-husband, Melissa enjoys her freedom until one night she finds herself indulging in a one night stand that changes everything.

    There’s something about the alluring Brett Walker that has Melissa feeling things she’s never had with any other man; feelings that not only scare her, but push her past her limits. Just when she begins to open her soul to this new love their bond is put to the test when jealousies from the past try to break them apart.

    It’s not only Melissa’s trust that’s put on the line, but Brett’s as well. Will their love be strong enough to get them through the lies? Will Melissa finally be able to say those three words she’s been dying to say? I trust you …

    Please join us on Tuesday, October 8th from 8-10pm EST for the Trusting You Release Party!  Just click here!

    Buy it on Amazon
    Add it on Goodreads


    His lazy grin grew wider. “I wondered if I’d ever see you again,” he murmured in his low, sexy voice.

    I scoffed and tried to step back, but he moved forward, closing the space. Placing my hands on my hips, I said, “Yeah, I bet. Someone like you probably has a different woman every night. I’m pretty sure you don’t even remember my name.” What’s bad is that I remembered his. I didn’t want to remember it, but I did; it was Brett Walker and he was twenty-eight years old, just like me.

    Smirking, he narrowed his eyes. “I could say the same for you. You were the one who left me, remember? Imagine my surprise when I woke up and your side of the bed was cold. You didn’t even say good-bye … Melissa. I must say it was a first for me.”

    About LP Dover

    L.P. Dover lives in the beautiful state of North Carolina with her husband and two wonderful daughters. She's an avid reader that loves her collection of books. Writing has always been her passion and she's delighted to share it with the world. L.P. Dover spent several years in college starting out with a major in Psychology and then switching to dental. She worked in the dental field for eight years and then decided to stay home with her two beautiful girls.

    Her works consist of the Forever Fae series, and the Second Chances series. She's really excited to be able to experience writing in the different genres. Her reading used to consist of nothing but suspense thrillers, but now she can't get away from the paranormal/fantasy books. Now that she has started on her passion and began writing, you will not see her go anywhere without a notebook, pen, and her secret energy builder ... chocolate.

    Author Links: Website, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, Newsletter Sign Up

    Other Books By L.P. Dover:

    Forever Fae
    Barnes and Noble

    Betrayals of Spring
    Barnes and Noble

    Summer of Frost
    Barnes and Noble

    Love’s Second Chance
    Barnes and Noble

    Love, Lies, and Deception
    Barnes and Noble

    October 7, 2013

    Pulling It Together: ROW80 Round 4 Goals

    2013 has been a blur. I published my second book and first young adult novel, and my family and I moved from Maryland to California. My goals, both personal and professional, have been all over the place and always changing this year.

    Round 4 is an opportunity for me to pull it all together and head into 2014 with momentum and a sense of purpose and achievement.

    But before I state my goals, I wanted to share a great post by Julie Glover. A Round of Words in 80 Days (ROW80) has brought some amazing people into my life. Julie is one of those. If you don't follow her blog, please do. She's funny, always willing to share, and a fellow word nerd.

    Yesterday, Julie shared her goals along with tips for choosing them: Tips for Choosing Writing Goals. Some of her findings...

    * You should include goals in multiple areas of your life.
    * Goals should be SMART (her post details the acronym).
    * Consider your values when determining goals.
    * Keep it simple.

    Then she shared some goal strategies from the book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. It's a book I have not read. But based on Julie's recommendation, I ordered it and will read it this round. I've been a bit scattered this year, so now is a great time.

    Thanks, Julie. Please check out her post for some inspiration.

    My Round 4 ROW80 Goals

    * Write 1,000 words a day Monday through Thursday through October 31. Then, I plan to join NaNoWriMo. I did NaNo last year, and I found it focused me to keep writing first in my to do list. For that challenge, I need to complete 50,000 words in the month of November.

    * I will attend #ROW80 word sprints (2:00pm EST on Twitter) at least three days a week. More if I can. This supports my writing goal.

    * Finish 25 books to meet my GoodReads reading goal of 100 books this year.

    I'm going to keep the main goals simple. But if my reading and writing goals are met for each day:

    * Perform my ROW80 sponsorship duties.
    * Visit blogs and be social on Twitter and Facebook.
    * Write reviews and share book news here and on Mom in Love with Fiction.
    * Put Depression Cookies on Smashwords (it's ready, I'm behind).
    * Get my author website up and running (in process).
    * Editing.

    And finally, I will exercise at least 3-4 times a week. I started to put a focus on family goal, but that is always number one and will supersede everything here. Round 4 is always a bit tricky with Thanksgiving and Christmas, but I am focused.

    Whatever your goals may be, I wish you well.

    And for those of you who don't know about ROW80. From the website:

    A Round of Words in 80 Days is the writing challenge that knows you have a life.

    We are all different and we all have different demands on our time.  Why should we all have the same goal?  The simple answer is that we shouldn’t.  If you want to be a writer, then you have to be able to roll with the punches and adapt to your changing circumstances.  If that means changing your goals when your life blows up, so be it.  ROW80 is the challenge that champions the marriage of writing and real life.

    October 4, 2013

    Friday Fun & Giveaways

    I wanted to share some great books and giveaways with everyone today. Few things bring me greater joy than a great read.
    First, a wonderful new adult read by the amazing Jo Michaels: Mystic ~ Melody. I was fortunate to get an ARC of this one. My full review can be found here. An excerpt:

    Melody is a damaged character, but she joins forces with some other ladies who are fighting their own demons. Each of them is finding a way to tap into their own strength. Women power!

    If you love a story centered around strong female characters, Mystic ~ Melody definitely fits the bill.

    You can find out more about Jo on Twitter, her website, her blog, and Facebook. Also, find out more about her indie author services at Indie Books Gone Wild (where I'm one of the editors/proofreaders).

    And I'm thrilled to be running a giveaway of this amazing book. Enter to win a paperback or Kindle copy of Mystic ~ Melody. Open to US residents only.
    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Next, a Southern women's fiction book I am very proud to have edited. Doris Schneider is a beautiful person and that shines through in her debut into the fiction world, Borrowed Things. An excerpt from my review:

    Borrowed Things is Southern women's fiction at its best, capturing your heart within the first few pages. Anne Gray is a rare character, equal parts strength and compassion. Readers will identify with her struggles and lingering questions as they enjoy her exploits and journey toward friendship and love. But most of all, they will find themselves transported into a town rich in memorable characters, intriguing history, and many secrets.

    For more information, check out GoodReads and follow Doris on Facebook.

    Because I'm feeling the book love, I also have a giveaway of Borrowed Things. Open to US Residents only.
    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Please share these giveaways. Wishing everyone a weekend full of wonderful moments and great reads.

    October 2, 2013

    Keeping My Pants Up: #IWSG

    It's the first Wednesday of the month and time for my Insecure Writer's Support Group post. A huge thanks to Alex J. Cavanaugh for putting together this group. I appreciate the opportunity to share my insecurities on the #IWSG therapy couch and to read how others are doing. 

    Oh, and a little bird told me that there's a big announcement tomorrow regarding #IWSG. Can't wait to find out what it's all about.

    This month I want to share a recent discovery I've made.

    Normally, the more I write, the less insecure I feel. When I'm in a writing groove, which I am fortunately in at the moment, it's all about the writing. Insecurities rear their ugly head when I'm editing and then again when I send a piece out for critique.

    Or at least that's how I felt writing my last two books. Now working on book two I've discovered a new insecurity. Not screwing up the details.

    Since I'm a pantser, I like to let the story unfold naturally. But with a book two (and knowing I want to write a book three), I have to pay attention to the details set forth in book one and set up details I want to unfold in book three.

    But every time I sit down to write out details and try to outline the same thing happens--I start writing.

    What's a pantser to do?

    I'm looking forward to visiting as many blogs as possible this month. My goal is to visit at least twenty new #IWSG blogs in addition to old favorites.