Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Exciting Things Are Happening...

I've been crazy busy writing, editing, submitting, and doing a bunch of other fun stuff. As a result, my blogging duties have been slacking. I know, there have been a ton of special guests stopping by and sharing news about their new books and that has been fun. I mean, who doesn't love meeting new authors and discovering new books, right? But today, I'm stealing the spotlight to tell you about all the exciting things happening in my world. Ready?

1. I collaborated with the super talented Aria Kane, Melinda Dozier, and Ana Blaze to write an anthology entitled, LOVE AND OTHER GAMES, which is a collection of sexy, Olympic themed novellas. Last week we contracted with Swoon Romance for this project. It will be available later this year.

This was the first time I'd ever written with a group of authors and it was the best experience in the world. I cannot wait to work with these ladies again.

Here's the unofficial blurb for my story, ICE GOLD:

Hockey is Colton Campbell’s life. He thrives on the fast-paced, adrenaline rushed lifestyle. The fact that he’s the object of every woman’s fantasy is nice too. Every woman except one, that is.

Brenna Jessup hates everything about the Olympics, especially the athletes. In her opinion they are a bunch of spoiled, arrogant, over indulged kids. Despite her abhorrence of the games, she’s hand-picked as the official photographer for the US Hockey Team.

When a faux pas by Brenna almost costs Colton his career, she owes him. Too bad for her, Colton doesn't want apologies--he wants retribution! And he knows just how to get it -and her -in the process. Can Colton get the gold and the girl? Or will Brenna's ill-conceived preconceptions leave both of them ICE GOLD?

2. I am now officially a Senior Editor for Entranced Publishing in their Mesmerized and Thrills lines. I've even been working on a couple of manuscripts -- which has been fun. It's also a great learning experience that I know will only make my writing better.

On this note, Entranced will be once again hosting Twitter Pitch Parties during the first Friday of every month, starting THIS Friday. Using the hashtag #FridayRomance, you can pitch your story to us in 140 characters or less. This is open to adult romances only, so please no YA or NA. You must first follow Entranced Publishing on Twitter before pitching.

The pitch times for this week are as follows:
10am-11am EST
2pm-3pm EST
6pm-7pm EST
9pm-10pm EST
 
And yes, I will be lurking =)
 
 
3. The story has been written and the contract has been signed for the sequel to The Georgia Corbins. I don't have a release date yet, but I can tell you that the title will be --
Levi: A Georgia Corbins Novel
 
Squee!! I'm so super excited for this second book.  There's lots of good stuff happening in this one!
 
 
 
 
 
4.  A group of young adult authors published with Entranced Publishing -- myself included -- are working to bring you a brand new blog dedicated to all things YA. There will be cool monthly features, interactive posts, and giveaways. The official launch is scheduled for August 5th. In the meantime, follow YArush on Twitter and Facebook so that you don't miss out on anything.
 
 
 
 
5. I've written a new contemporary erotic romance, entitled JILTED and have submitted it to my publisher. Here's the really short version:
 
When Brett Hudson is jilted at the altar, he turns to the one person in the world he knows he can count on -- his best friend, Amy. In her arms, he'll find the solace he needs.
 
Amy King has been keeping a huge secret from her best friend -- she's in love with him. Too bad for her, he has only ever seen her has a friend. So, when Brett begs her to go on his honeymoon with him, she can't refuse. Can she give him the solace he needs while protecting her heart? Or will a week on a tropical island be her undoing?
 
Stay tuned for the release date and blog tour information!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Getting Personal with the author of In Stone: Louise D.Gornall

I'd like to welcome the fabulous Louise D. Gornall to my blog today. She's a talented writer, kick-ass beta reader for yours truly, and an all around awesome friend. Her debut novel, In Stone, was recently released and she's agreed to answer some questions for me today. So, let's get this show on the road...


Can you start by telling us a bit about your book, IN STONE?

Beau Bailey is suffering from a post-break-up meltdown when she
happens across a knife in her local park and takes it home. Less than a week later, the new boy in school has her trapped in an alley; he’s sprouted horns and is going to kill Beau unless she hands over the knife.

Until Eighteenth-century gargoyle, Jack, shows up to save her.

Jack has woken from a century-long slumber to tell Beau that she’s unwittingly been drafted into a power struggle between two
immortal races: Demons and Gargoyles. The knife is the only one in existence capable of killing immortals and they’ll tear the world apart to get it back. To draw the warring immortals away from her home, Beau goes with Jack in search of the mind-bending realm known as the Underworld, a place where they’ll hopefully be able to destroy the knife and prevent all hell from breaking loose. That is, provided they can outrun the demons chasing them.



So, Jack's a gargoyle huh? How'd you come up with that idea? Did you just look at a gargoyle statue one day and think, "Damn that's sexy?"

Yep! He sure is. I'm forever trying to invent new ways to freak people out and after I'd graduated from piercing my face and rainbow dying my hair, forming romantic attachments to grotesque, stone statues seemed like a natural progression, you know? In all seriousness my Nanna told me about the demon and gargoyle myth during a particularly boring church service one Sunday morning. My CPs liked the idea when I pitched it to them, and we went from there.


Have you ever met a gargoyle in real life? Do you want to?

I've seen a couple. There's one perched on the roof of a house about 20 minutes down the road from me. Never met a gargoyle's human side though. That would be epic!


What's the weirdest thing you've ever done in the name of research?

Nothing. I'm insanely boring. Besides, everyone has already done all the cray-cray stuff and stuck it on the internet for me to find. Can I make something up? This one time I spent two weeks living inside Joaquin Phoenix's beard because I needed to know what it was like to live like a celebrity.


Have you ever eaten a crayon? Chalk? Dirt? What is the strangest thing you've ever eaten?

I eat strawberries with mayo, and there's nothing I won't try covered in chocolate. Though I haven't yet taken that to the crayon-chalk-dirt extreme...but the night is still young.




What is the strangest dream you've ever had?

There are many. I dream about falling a lot, and I dream about being in the US a lot. I'm mostly disorientated in my dreams. I'm sure that means something, but I have no idea what. Still waiting on a dream about my characters past, present or future...

While writing IN STONE, what sexy actor did you imagine playing Jack?

The absolutely gorgeous Douglas Booth is my Jack!
 



Does Beau have any quirks or characteristics that reflect you?

Beau wears a lot of eyeliner like me. She also shares my dry sense of humor. She's the seventeen-year-old I wish I'd been in high school!


IN STONE is YA. Do you have any plans to break out of that genre in the future and write something a little more adult?

It is. To be honest I don't. I love YA. I love the teen voice and I love reliving 'firsts' through my characters. I recently gave writing NA a shot -- because I'd heard that NA and YA were practically the same thing -- NOT THE SAME THING. Not the same thing at all. I completely missed the tone of voice and attitude. I guess you should never say never, but right now I'm all about the YA.


Thanks for stopping by today, Louise. Where can people buy IN STONE and where can they find out more about you?

IN STONE is available here and you can also add it on Goodreads.

I can be found on my Blog or trolling the Twitterverse.

Tour-wide Rafflecopter (US/UK/AUS/CAN)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

{In Your Write Mind Workshop}: World Building

Hosted by Lucienne Diver

You need conflict and tension or you don't have a novel!!

Build a world that stands in the way of what the hero/heroine wants.

Elements of building a strong, believable world:
1. Environment -- setting, isolated, connected, flora, fauna, population, soil, (not all will be on the page, but you should still know it)

2. Religion -- What is the primary religious beliefs of your world? Multiple religions, conflicting religions. What morals guide/dictate your world and your characters? Is your religion tied to your politics?

3. Family Units -- marriage rules: polygamy, arranged, free choice. Nuclear or extended families? Roles of men vs. women. Roles of children.

4. Technology -- What level of technology does your world have? Hunting/gathering vs. post apocalyptic vs. contemporary vs. futuristic.

5. Language -- Create your own or use an established language. There will always be specialized language in every society. Cursing -- what is sacred vs. what isn't. Don't use language/words that are difficult for your reader. Must still be relatable and believable to your readers.

6. Economy -- Healthy or unhealthy? Age of workforce is important. Types of jobs available, resources.

7. Politics -- Democracy, anarchy, dictatorship, monarchy, communism,


PROLOGUES:
  • Sometimes prologues are really needed. Use them sparingly.
  • No omniscient POV or dreams or flashback or myth or celestial stars, etc.

How to avoid backstory/info dumps:
  • Don't introduce characters before they exist/show up on the page.
  • Once a character appears, do NOT stop flow of story to give backstory. Weave it in naturally via dialogue and/or narrative.
  • Best way to avoid info dump is to start your story in the right place. Starting too late will require a lot of backstory. Must define what is normal before it all goes to hell and to give a reason for your readers to care.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

{In Your Write Mind Workshop}: Public Speaking for Authors

Hosted by Judi Fleming


FIRST IMPRESSIONS:
You NEVER get a second chance to make a first impression. Make it count!!!

SKILLS:
  • Learn to project your voice
  • Take a deep breath and project from your gut not your voice/throat.
  • Make eye contact with your audience so that they feel included and engaged.
  • Don't be shy! Put on your "public speaking" persona.
  • Pitch (of your voice should be friendly and welcoming) Pause (count to 3 and think about what you want to say. Audience won't recognize pause) and Patience
  • Body language -- always be approachable.

AUDIENCE:
  • An audience of one is still an audience.
  • You have an audience all the time except when you're sleeping.
  • Everyone is your audience -- passerby asking for directions to the restroom, clerk at the grocery store, kid's teachers, etc.
PRACTICE! PRACTICE! PRACTICE! Out loud, not in your head. Stand in front of a mirror and practice.




Monday, July 1, 2013

Release Day Blitz: In Stone by Louise D. Gornall

I'm so happy to welcome Louise D. Gornall to my blog today to celebrate the release of her debut novel, In Stone. There's info about the book, the author, and even an awesome giveaway! Check it out.


Title: In Stone
Author: Louise D. Gornall
Publisher and Imprint: Entranced Publishing, Blush
Genre: YA paranormal romance
Release Date: July 1
Length: 120 pages
Blurb:  Beau Bailey is suffering from a post-break-up meltdown when she happens across a knife in her local park and takes it home. Less than a week later, the new boy in school has her trapped in an alley; he’s sprouted horns and is going to kill Beau unless she hands over the knife.

Until Eighteenth-century gargoyle, Jack, shows up to save her.

Jack has woken from a century-long slumber to tell Beau that she’s unwittingly been drafted into a power struggle between two immortal races: Demons and Gargoyles. The knife is the only one in existence capable of killing immortals and they’ll tear the world apart to get it back. To draw the warring immortals away from her home, Beau goes with Jack in search of the mind-bending realm known as the Underworld, a place where they’ll hopefully be able to destroy the knife and prevent all hell from breaking loose. That is, provided they can outrun the demons chasing them.
 
EXCERPT:
As a general rule, nobody walks the Switch on account of the overgrown nettle bushes, a pungent aroma of foot infection, and a collective fear of encountering something feral. However, the Switch shaves at least ten minutes off my journey, and lately I don’t trust the dark. I blame my encounter with the almost-corpse, two nights ago. Before then the dark was just a natural progression; something to be slept in, a different color in the sky. Now, shadows make me jump, and the dark carries a silence that makes me think of funerals. It breathes life into creatures that had always been safely contained behind a TV screen. I make my way down the Switch, striding over vicious flora and trying to ignore the occasional nip that sinks straight through my jeans.
Hey, Beau!” A voice from behind startles me. When I turn, Gray is jogging in my direction, thwarting thorn bushes with his bare hands. “I was looking for you.”
The hairs on the back of my neck bristle. My hand is in my pocket, and my fingers are wrapped around a slender cylinder of pepper spray as he reaches me.
Well you found me. What’s up?”
There’s something I need to ask you,” he says sheepishly. He hammers his toe against the ground, grinding it nervously into the dirt and crushing several stems of dandelion into gold dust. He giggles; it’s a soft, sweet sound that suffocates my hostility. He reminds me of Mark moments before he’d asked me out on our first date. Maybe this guy could be the one to liberate me from my social network sabbatical. Maybe my slightly-too-heavy eyeliner and my reputation as the mortician’s daughter hasn’t freaked him out.

Really?” Surprise raises my pitch. “What’s that?” The pepper spray is abandoned in my pocket.
Where’s the knife?” he replies, snatching my throat and slamming my back up against the concrete wall. It’s so forceful, so hard, that my spine ripples. Red flashes across my vision. The muscles in my neck go slack, and my head flops forward. He stabs his thumb up under my chin, forcing me to look him in the eye. His eyes are like the moon; cold, giant circles of icy-silver. But a change in his eye color is nothing in comparison to the change happening on either side of his head. I don’t understand it. It makes me wonder, briefly, if what I’m seeing is a side effect of the migraine pills Leah slipped me at lunch. Gray is growing horns. Giant grey horns that slide out of the side of his skull and then curl like springs around his ears. They’re animal.
 

BUY LINKS:
Kobo


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Louise is a graduate of Garstang Community Academy. She is currently studying for a BA (Hons) in English language and literature with special emphasis on creative writing. YA aficionado. Brit bird. Film nerd. Identical twin. Junk food enthusiast. Rumored pink Power Ranger. Zombie apocalypse 2012 survivor. She is also an avid collector of book boyfriends.
 
 
           You can find more of Louise on her website, Facebook, and Twitter.

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
** PLEASE NOTE: this giveaway is open only to residents in the US, UK, Australia and Canada.**