Thursday, May 21, 2015

Writer's Voice Entry: Catalyst

I was lucky enough to win a spot in The Writer's Voice! *squeal* For those of you who don't know, The Writer's Voice is a contest in which I post my query and first 250 words of my manuscript in the hopes that I'm chosen for a team that will take me to the agent round. So, here goes...


In a crumbling, futuristic Las Vegas where the wealthy choose genetic modification for their children, eighteen-year-old Sienna Preston clings to the one thing she’s good at—the art of lying. 

After the mysterious death of her father, Sienna uses her liar-for-hire skills to help support her family. As a “normal” girl among the genetically modified—or GM’s—the world around her is a little too pretty, a little too smart, and a little too cruel. Especially since her love interest is the GM's finest.

But not all liar-for-hire assignments go according to plan. And when her covert exchange of a stolen computer chip is intercepted, Sienna becomes entangled with a corrupt Government official hell-bent on taking her down. Using her lying, thieving past as leverage—and her mother as collateral—Commander Radcliffe forces Sienna to make a difficult choice. Kill the father of the genetically modified poster boy she’s falling for or be sent to Solitary Confinement. For the rest of her life.

Or perhaps there is another option…Like joining forces with an extremist group and their young leader who’s too hot to be bad.

Problem is, even an underground Compound can't escape the fiery missiles of the Government's drones. 

Complete at 100,000 words, Catalyst is a YA near future thriller with strong romantic elements.

First 250:

The bio fridge hums with its latest addition—a package of dehydrated bologna.

“The shelf life for product Meat Delite will expire in one month and two days,” the automated voice chimes in.

I sigh in disgust. If I have to eat one more package of that crap, I might just vomit in my mouth. Seriously.

I eye the sparse contents inside the gelled portion of the fridge. The tube of yogurt looks decidedly better than the bottled pickles. And definitely better than Meat Crap Delite. I grab the purple yogurt tube and tear into it.

As the door closes with a click, I stare at my reflection in the tinted glass. The circles under my eyes are a dead giveaway that I haven’t had any sleep. I’m not used to pulling all-nighters, which might also explain why I feel like a ravenous beast.

I suck down the pomegranate-blueberry flavored creamy goodness and listen for sounds of movement inside our double-wide. But all I hear is the steady whir of the solar panels absorbing the heat from the rising sun. Mama and Emily must still be asleep.

Squeezing the tube to get every last drop of yogurt, I slump down in a recycled kitchen chair and mumble to Iris to show me the news.

“Good morning, Sienna. Here are the news highlights for today.” The small Com Screen begins buffering the latest headlines. If I did my job right, the news should lead off with a disgraced Honorable Tanner Caldwell being led away in handcuffs.


A BIG thank you to our lovely hosts Brenda Drake, Krista Van Dolzer, Elizabeth Briggs, and
Mónica Bustamante Wagner for this wonderful opportunity. And to my fellow entrants, best of luck!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Saturday Six

Hi, everyone. I've often heard of the Friday Five, but for today, I decided to do the Saturday Six and give you six updates about myself. It's been a while since I've given an update, so this is long overdue!

1) I sent the manuscript for my YA contemporary, Middle of Knowhere, to my CP this week. I think she likes it so far, but I can't wait to see what she really thinks. :)

2) I survived the Cub Scout Blue and Gold banquet this week. (Did I mention that I'm the Cubmaster for our pack?) Yep, so I planned, decorated, and executed the event, and boy, am I glad that's over! It was a Minion theme. Cute, huh?

3) Last night, I went to a Zumba fundraiser for a little boy at our elementary school who has cancer. Bring It 4 Brayon. You can find info all over the web about him. He is basically dancing his way through his cancer treatments, and he is unbelievable for a little six-year-old. He was on the Ellen Degeneres Show this past week, and she fell in LOVE with him. Last night, our small rural town raised...*insert drumroll please*  THIRTY THOUSAND DOLLARS!! *cue the squeals*

He is such a brave little boy who has captured the hearts of many!

4) I am still querying my YA near future thriller, CATALYST. There are still a few agents who have my manuscript and I'm waiting to hear back from them before I send more queries. The waiting is the hardest part! BUT, in the meantime, I have a couple contests I'll be entering in the next couple of weeks. Query Kombat and The Writer's Voice.

5) My husband was out of town recently and I had a book "marathon" while he was away. I read like 4 books in 2 days. They were all YA contemporary books so it was great to compare them to my own YA contemporary manuscript. I came away feeling pretty good. And the cool thing about 3 of those books...they were FREE and they were SIGNED! I won them in a Giveaway over on Magen Corrie's website. Gotta love Giveaways!!

6) My son's birthday is coming up at the end of this month. Remember how I did a Frozen party last year? If not, you can click HERE to find out...Anyways, this year he wants an Avengers party. Sooo, I guess I know what I'll be doing for the next couple of weeks...


Hope you're having a fabulous weekend! What's up with you?

Sunday, May 10, 2015

A Mother is a Gift

Happy Mother's Day!!

I just love Mother's Day, mainly because it's a day where we can honor the women in our lives who have made a difference. You don't have to be a mother to be celebrated on this special day. Every woman has the opportunity to have an impact on someone else's life, so today, while honoring mothers, I truly believe it's also a day to honor womanhood.

As women, we are special. We are unique. We are daughters, wives, sisters, mothers, teachers, and friends. We come in many shapes, sizes, colors, and religious preferences. We have been blessed with the ability to bear children, nurture souls, and show kindness to those we come in contact with. So, today, let's honor all those women in our lives who have taught us something, who have brought a smile to our face, who have loved us or cared for us.

You don't have to be a mother to celebrate Mother's Day.

But now that I am a mother, it is truly one of my favorite days. It's a chance for me to be pampered by my gaggle of boys. It's an opportunity for me to relax and eat chocolates, and let my husband and sons cook dinner and clean up.

Yesterday, I got to take the "day off." I did a little shopping, and met up with a friend for lunch and pedicures. It was seriously the BEST day! And a day I totally needed!

Don't you love our selfie? :)

If you're celebrating Mother's Day today, here are some great quotes to uplift and inspire you. Do any of them ring true?




I just love those quotes! I hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day filled with relaxation, and hopefully chocolates! :)

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

May IWSG: My Muse

I have this muse, she's called Inspiration.

We all know her. She's the one who keeps us up late at night and who bombards our dreams and sneaks in at the most inopportune times. Rarely does she strike when she's supposed to, like when I'm sitting at my laptop trying to rewrite the beginning of a story.

No, instead, she likes to visit when it is totally, utterly, and completely inconvenient. Perhaps when I'm taking a shower, driving in the car, or cleaning the house. My poor house doesn't stand a chance against Inspiration! She's very persuasive and demands that I stop whatever I'm doing and focus on exactly what she needs to say. I swear I must look like a deranged person when she finally visits me.

Ah well, I guess I'd rather have her visit me than her annoying cousin Writer's Block. Or her ugly step-child Doubt.

Yep, I think I'll take Inspiration any day.

How about you? Is your Inspiration this demanding?

**This post was brought to you by my group posting for the IWSG! A big thank you to ninja captain, Alex Cavanaugh for organizing this monthly blog hop where we post our fears, insecurities, and triumphs, and offer support to those who need it. If interested, you can join HERE.

Have a great one!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Book Blitz: White Raven by J.L. Weil

I'm excited to showcase the YA paranormal romance novel White Raven by J.L. Weil! I am absolutely in love with this cover. Isn't it gorgeous?

Be sure to enter the Giveaways at the bottom of the post for the chance to win a $25 AMAZON gift card, a signed copy of White Raven, and some swag! Sound amazing? 

And in a separate Giveaway, you have a chance to win a FREE eBook copy of White Raven! Enjoy the blitz!

White Raven by J.L. Weil
(Raven Series, #1)
Publication date: March 27th 2015
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Young Adult



It only took one heartbeat to change my life—one chilling phone call in the middle of the night.

And then, as if my life didn’t already suck, my dad sends my brother and me to some idyllic island for the summer to live with a grandma we never met. WTH. Naturally, I rebel. In the end, I find myself shipped off to Raven Hallow…and bored to tears.

Until I get an eyeful of the mind-bendingly gorgeous Zane Hunter. The dark-hair cutie makes my pulse go bonkers, and I think, maybe this might not be so bad after all. Six feet of swoon inducing looks, with a hint of Celtic charm in his voice, he was the type of guy that left a string of broken hearts in his wake. And I had all the heartbreak I could handle.

Yet, there is something uncanny, almost supernatural about Zane, and it’s not just his devastating smirk. No matter how much distance I put between us, Raven Hallow isn’t big enough, and the sparking tension between is undeniable. Of course, the one person I want to avoid becomes my salvation.

My past comes back to terrorize me. Someone wants me dead, and the closer I get to the truth, the more I realize my whole life is a lie. I am no longer sure what is more frightening—the attempts on my life or the guy whose heart and soul are synchronized with mine.



Award-winning and Bestselling author J.L. Weil writes Teen & New Adult Paranormal Romances about spunky, smart mouth girls who always wind up in dire situations. For every sassy girl, there is an equally mouthwatering, overprotective guy. Of course there is lots of kissing. And stuff.

Most of her books are for ages 16+. They usually have what she considers the good stuff - sexual content (oh yeah) and swearing. You have been warned ;)

An admitted addict to Love Pink clothes, raspberry mochas from Starbucks, (yum!) and Jensen Ackles (double yum!). She loves gushing about books and Supernatural with her readers.

Guest Post by J.L. Weil

100 Things I Love:

Being in love. My boys. Raspberry Mochas. Twilight. Love Pink. The smell of the Ocean. Dark Chocolate. Books. Being married. Harry Potter. Bad Boys. Candles. The Green Bay Packers. Jensen Ackles (duh!). NKOTB. Punky Brewster. Libraries. The Walking Dead. American Eagle jeggings. Owls. Bonfires. Dancing. Libraries with a Starbucks inside. My cat, Kiki. Romance. Vampire Diaries. Ireland. Christmas. Country music. Movies. Motherhood. The sound of water. Sunsets. Sleep. Going out to dinner. Laughing. Shopping. Moonlight. Sex. Amaretto stone sour. My family. Musicals. My macbook. The stars. Reading. Freebies. Back rubs. Fireplaces. Eyes. Daydreaming. Video games. Singing. Twitter. Decorating. Grill outs. The beach. Swearing. Coco-cola. Writing. Madden shoes. Body piercings. Sightseeing. Pretty Little Liars. Purses. Vacations. Sleeping. Staying up late. Lazy afternoons. A clean house. Bubble baths. Home cooked meals. Trends. Cliches. Nora Roberts. Tattoos. Pink hair. Makeup. Magic & Witches. Sparkly things. Hugs. Walt Disney World. My hubby's steak (it was the first meal he ever made me). Kissing and stuff. My little sis. Brantley Gilbert. Wishes. My birthday. Surprises. Blogging. Anything Celtic. Snapping gum. Thunderstorms. Iced coffee. Donuts. Freckles. Perfume. Organization. Butterflies. Summertime. Sips & Sjin.

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