Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Tonight is the night of spooks and goblins. Or in my kids case, teenage mutant ninja turtles and zombie doctors. It's HALLOWEEN!!

If you're like me, you LOVE Halloween—I mean, endless amounts of chocolate, what's not to love?!

And then there are the cute little kids who come a' knockin' at the door. Little girls dressed in Elsa and princess costumes, and little boy ninjas, superheroes, and anything remotely scary.

Of course, trick-or-treating is the highlight for my kids, who by the time Halloween rolls around have already been to 2 or 3 other trunk-or-treating events and gotten a mother-load of candy.

After the hours of trick-or-treating, we all arrive home with weary feet and bundles of candy which is quickly scattered on the living room floor as the boys begin "the trade."

Once they are all sugared up and bouncing off the walls, it's time for bed. Chocolate-stained fingers and lollipop-coated hair that desperately needs a bath will have to wait until morning. Because this mom is pooped, and her little kiddies too.

Have a happy Halloween! And save me your Reese's peanut butter cups—they're my favorite! :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

This Writer Mom...

In an attempt to shake things up a bit and mesh three things I love—writing, being a mother, and design, I decided to create these posts titled "This Writer Mom." Based on color and style, I will match pictures of "mothers" to their ideal writing (and perhaps lounging or dining location). It's a fun way to incorporate design elements into my blog while still maintaining a focus on writing. Hope you enjoy!

This stylish mother...
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Sleeps here...                                                                   Writes here....
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What is your preferred place to write, read, or just unwind after a long day?

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Soulless Blog Tour—Crystal Collier

SOULLESS IS HERE!! That's right, you read correctly. For all those who have been looking forward to the release of Soulless, Book 2 of the Maiden of Time series by Crystal Collier, you don't have to wait a moment longer!

I was lucky enough to receive an Advanced Review Copy of Soulless in exchange for an honest review. And honestly, Soulless is EVEN BETTER than Moonless (if that's possible). I know sometimes sequels fall short of their destination, but not this one. It is a truly captivating read! To see my full review, click HERE.

And now, here's SOULLESS! And don't forget to enter the awesome Giveaway hosted by Crystal and several other authors.

Series: Maiden of Time
Author: Crystal Collier
Pages: 263
Pub Date: October 13, 2014
Publisher: Raybourne Publishing
ISBN: 9781629830032

The Soulless are coming.

Alexia manipulated time to save the man of her dreams, and lost her best friend to red-eyed wraiths. Still grieving, she struggles to reconcile her loss with what was gained: her impending marriage. But when her wedding is destroyed by the Soulless—who then steal the only protection her people have—she’s forced to unleash her true power.

And risk losing everything.


What reviewers are saying:

"5 Stars." - Invincible Love of Reading Book Blog

"I LOVED it! So good. Seriously...exceeded my expectations." -Kristin Smith, advanced reviewer

"Entirely unique and chilling." Gabby @ What’s Beyond Forks

"Unputdownable." T.C. Mckee, BookFish Books


John offered Alexia a chair. “Perhaps you would hate me less if you knew my story?”

She scowled but took a seat, gratefully. Mae bustled about the kitchen, a comforting presence to counter his.

“Before all this,” he motioned down his form, “I was like you—raised among humans, oblivious to our differences. I had a family—a wife, sons, even a daughter, all human, or mostly so.” He rubbed a hand over his mouth. “He did not find me until well after I came of age, for I did not possess enough of the blood to be noticed. What I did have was a gift for healing—not as strong as his, mind you. It started as a talent for seeing what was wrong, and thus an ability to prescribe the correct treatment.” He dropped into a chair across from her, elbows landing on his knees. “I served a small community as their doctor.” A sad smile tugged at his cheeks, eyes far away. “In Wilhamshire.”

She closed her eyes. The bustling town reared up in her mind, the winding streets and shop fronts, the tavern where she’d once weathered a night after Miles saved her and Sarah from the Soulless, the house on the hill where Kiren had imprisoned Bellezza—Haunted House of Stark.

“My given name is John Stark, after my father, and after his father.”

Alexia gasped and sat back.

His brows scrunched down. “I met him over a patient one day. He observed my treatment and informed me I had rare gifts. I belonged to a secret race. To prove his point, he healed the child I had been treating, and proceeded over the next many weeks to teach me how.

“His home had been discovered by the Soulless, and he had been forced to vacate. While passing through Wilhamshire, he heard stories of my successes, and came to investigate. For a time, he resided in my home, until he was able to establish a new residence I have yet to discover. He became my…my children’s godparent.”

His fingers clasped into his knees. “But one day, after spending the night at a patient’s sickbed, I returned home to find my wife and children murdered in a most brutal manner.” His eyes darted from one wall to the other, cheek twitching. “The Soulless had come in search of him.” He met Alexia’s gaze. “My entire life was gone.”

She shivered. It couldn’t be true. John’s family had not been massacred because of Kiren, had they?

“I went after them. He told me not to,” his head shook, “but I was determined to have my revenge.”

She straightened up, but couldn’t look at the man, the person who had lost everything because he showed kindness to a vagabond.

John mimicked her. “He spared my life even after I became one of the Soulless, and we have danced the dance ever since.”


Get your free copy of book 1, MOONLESS, October 13, 20, 27, 31 or Nov 7.

Author Bio:

Crystal Collier is a young adult author who pens dark fantasy, historical, and romance hybrids. She can be found practicing her brother-induced ninja skills while teaching children or madly typing about fantastic and impossible creatures. She has lived from coast to coast and now calls Florida home with her creative husband, four littles, and “friend” (a.k.a. the zombie locked in her closet). Secretly, she dreams of world domination and a bottomless supply of cheese.

You can find her on her BlogFacebookGoodreads, or follow her on Twitter.


Friday, October 10, 2014

Book Review—Soulless by Crystal Collier

I've been looking forward to this book for quite some time, so when I received an eARC copy, I was excited! The following is my review for Soulless, Book 2 of the Maiden of Time series by Crystal Collier.

Soulless (Maiden of Time, #2)Soulless by Crystal Collier
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received an Advanced Review Copy of Soulless in exchange for an honest review. So, here it is (in all honesty).

I loved Moonless, but I was completely captivated by Soulless. I couldn't put it down! High tension, unforgettable romance, and unique characters make Soulless an enthralling read. In Moonless, Alexia Dumont discovers the power she has, but in Soulless, she unleashes it. She recognizes her true potential and works toward becoming the powerful person she's meant to be. Dubbed as the Maiden of Time, she is confident, brave, and in love, making her an extremely relatable character. And then there's Kiren. He's totally swoon worthy, but you see his weaknesses in this book, and that's a good thing.

Bellezza is once again a show stopping character. We learn more about her past and why she is the way she is. She's like an old spirit trapped in a young body. But don't be fooled by her girlishness. There's nothing childlike about that girl other than her appearance! She is truly an unforgettable character.

My absolute favorite part of the book is the romance between Alexia and Kiren. They have such a powerful connection and I LOVE *spoiler alert* how Alexia saves him time and time again by shifting time (forgive the pun). It was the perfect blend of romance and action, and the ending itself gave me chills. The best ending ever! Now I can't wait for the next book to come out!! Hurry up, Crystal!

View all my reviews

Tune in next week for Crystal's Blog Tour! I will feature her book on Wednesday, October 15th. Be sure to stop by and enter the amazing Giveaway hosted by Crystal and several other authors.

**Also, here's a shout out for a blogging buddy of mine...

Week long book sale! Beginning Sunday, October 12th, Loni Townsend's, Thanmir War is only $0.99 on Amazon! Don't miss out on this great deal!

Any other exciting news?

Have a great weekend!! :)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

IWSG Co-Host, Anniversary, and Anthology

The first Wednesday of every month is reserved for the Insecure Writers Support Group (also known as the IWSG). If you are interested in joining this awesome group where we post our insecurities and triumphs, as well as offer encouragement to fellow writers, you can sign up HERE. Created by the amazing Alex Cavanaugh, the IWSG is a wonderful group to be a part of.

I am honored to be a co-host for the IWSG this month! My other amazing co-hosts are: ElsieSuzanne Furness, and Fundy Blue. You should stop by and say hello!

Also, HAPPY 1st ANNIVERSARY to the IWSG website!!! As part of an IWSG eBook anthology to assist other writers on the journey of writing, publishing, and marketing, my post for this month will include my submission for the writing section of the book. I had big plans to give some brilliant writing tips, but when I sat down to write this excerpt, this is what came out instead. I was inspired by a friend of mine who desperately wants to write a novel, but is so scared she'll fail, that she refuses to try.

So you want to write a novel?

After all these years, you're finally ready to do it. Don't be scared. Don't think you'll fail, even though at times you might. Don't be too hard on yourself, you are, after all, still learning.

Allow yourself to be inspired by the things around you—conversations you hear, people you meet, songs on the radio, maybe even a perfect sunset. That's what will make your writing unique—everything YOU see, hear, experience, feel, will be different from someone else. The story you have to tell, will be different.

Hour after hour you will plug away at your laptop. You will fill pages upon pages of words that only you will see. Line by line, page by page, a story will unfold. A story that captivates you, leaves you sleepless and longing for more hours with the characters you've created. And then one day, it will be done—and yet, far from finished. You will spend hours, days, weeks, even months polishing your manuscript. Rewriting scenes, taking out characters, adding motivation and ensuring there's a visible character arc. You may find that you need to step away from this novel for a while and come back with fresh eyes and a new perspective. Do it. That time away will be invaluable.

In the end, you may think your writing is no good. You many want to burn that manuscript or erase that document, but don't. Celebrate what you HAVE accomplished—you finished a novel. Something many aspire to do, but few are able to achieve!

Now is the tough part. You have to let your baby go, out into the world for other eyes to see. You need other's perspectives. You need to know what works, what doesn't, and where lie the plot holes, and the lack of characterization. Don't be offended if your best friend or critique partner has a very strong opinion about your main character. Don't get upset if your spouse or beta reader thinks your story "needs some work." Take the advice, thoughts, opinions of others and sit on them. For a while. You'll know what advice to take and what to leave behind. Think about what feels right for your story. And don't forget, most importantly, that this is YOUR story. Not theirs.

And after all that polishing, all that work, your manuscript will finally be ready. Will you choose to query agents? Or will you submit to publishers? Or perhaps the indie route is the way for you. Whatever you choose, you will celebrate the moment you can share your work with the world.

In the end, it comes down to one thing, and one thing only. If you want to write a novel, then write.