Monday, December 10, 2012

Good News

Sometimes good things do happen, and I just wanted to share a little bit of something GOOD that a fellow author is going through.
Regardless of our dreams, hopes or aspirations, I think we should follow our hearts, and keep on doing what we were meant to do. I am not saying 'give up your day job'. I am telling you to have enough faith in yourself to do what you were meant to do...and if that means finding a day job to put food on the table while you work through the night towards your dreams, then so be it.

Keith writes:
How often do you get a look at an independent writer's work being considered for a movie in California? The name of the novel is The Cursed Man by Keith Rommel. Here is an audition clip for the role of the antagonist, Dr. Anna Lee.
Keith can be found at:
Audition link:

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Giving Up Sleep

Have you ever had one of those moments where you stop and wonder how the heck you got to be standing where you are?
That would be me, right here, right now. No, it isn’t a bad place to be…but wasn’t it ME that had posted something about pacing yourself? And yet here I am, swept away by a tsunami. I kept saying, “OK, my writing course is finally done, that’ll give me more time. OK, that book has a contract, now to get back to the other two. OK, duties as second-in-command and training officer have been taken care of, so there, I’m right on schedule. OK, basement renos underway.  Zoey’s preschool activities ongoing…” Ah, yes, there’s DH, the house, the dog, my 3 grown kids, cooking, cleaning, and just plain life. Sleep, however, appears to be optional.
Now that my book REBIRTH has its contract, the cover has been decided upon, and things are moving ahead, time to think about the trailer. I still need a cover for Amethyst Eyes 2, and trailers for AE2 and Emma.
Not so bad, right? If only. Remember, there is still this blog, my website, facebook, twitter, PR, promoting fellow authors, chapter of the week, interviews and books to review. Oh, yeah… that's all the stuff I’ve been neglecting to catch a few hours sleep.
I am confident things will level off and I’ll be back in full swing before I know it. Right now, I want to curl up in front of a fire and sleep. Heck, at this point, drop to the floor and sleep LOL.
Stay tuned...because the cover for Rebirth will appear shortly. For those of you who know where to find my website, it's in there. There is still a slight possibility it will change, but it's only slight.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Zane, by author Kimberly Lewis

Welcome to Zane's Blog Tour,
Meet author Kimberly Lewis
In November of 2011, author Kimberly Lewis stepped into the writing world with her first original western contemporary romance novel, When the Heart Falls.
Born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, this country girl at heart caught the creative bug at an early age, doing everything from drawing to writing short stories.
After the birth of her son, Kimberly found the inspiration to pick up a pen, or in this case a laptop, and began writing her first novel. Since then she has continued to write and credits her husband, Rob, and her wonderfully crazy family, who with their love and joking demeanor provide her with the ideas that inspire her novels.
In her spare time she enjoys reading, horseback riding, and spending time with her amazing family.

I would like to take a moment to share an interview with author Kimberly Lewis.  

Could you share a little about yourself and what led you to become a writer?
I am a country girl, born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Some of my favorite activities to do are: reading and writing (obviously, lol), horseback riding, anything crafty, and spending as much time as I can with my little family. I have always had a love of reading and creating stories, so I guess you could say that my journey to becoming an author stemmed from that. I didn’t take it seriously though until a few years ago when I fell in love with contemporary western romances and decided that that was what I wanted to write. When inspiration finally hits, it hits you hard :-)
Do you write full time? How much of your life is set aside for writing?
As much as I’d love to be able to write full time, that is just not an option right now. I currently have a day job, I am a mother, a wife, a home owner and a pet owner, so all of that comes before writing. Most of my writing time happens when everyone in my house is asleep :-) I’ll set up my laptop at my dining room table—my office for the time being—and work until the wee hours of the morning. I lose a lot of sleep doing it that way, but it is so worth it.
Could you tell us a little about your novel?
The story is about a woman, Kellan (aka Andi), who runs away from her abusive ex-boyfriend and finds herself in cowboy country. At first she’s just appalled by everything and everyone there, but she decides that it would be the perfect place to hide from her ex. She meets Zane in the beginning of the novel and they don’t really get off to a great start. Thoroughly disproving of one another, they both try their best to avoid seeing each other again but living in a small town makes that pretty darn impossible. There is a lot of bickering and distrust between the two at first, but the more time they spend together the more they realize that they really aren’t so different after all.
Would you take us on a brief tour of your novel and the world you’ve created?
Well the story takes place in a little town called Buford, Texas. It’s one of those tight-knit communities where everybody knows everybody, one main paved road, lots of dirt, lots of farmland and lots of livestock. Being in such a small, country town is quite a culture shock for Andi, seeing as she’s never lived outside of the city before. Zane really doesn’t have a lot of patience with her at first and tends to give her a hard time. But his family makes up for his rudeness as they make her feel welcome and make it their job to help her out along the way. The closeness and support of Zane’s family is one of my favorite parts of the novel.
Where does the inspiration for your main character and story come from?
Oh gosh, to be honest with you I don’t really think that I can target a specific thing that inspired me. I think maybe one day I was in a really bad mood and feeling depressed about something and thought about writing my feelings down in a journal. Then the whole journal idea got me thinking about this random woman and her writing down her feelings in a journal of her own. Of course then my mind starting to wonder, “Well, why is she depressed?”,“What brought her to this point?” I went through many plot ideas before I settled on the one I chose for Zane and I really like having those excerpts from Andi’s journal throughout the novel because it gives you a first person point of view in a book that’s being told in the third person. You get a chance to really feel what she’s feeling and I personally really like that.
What is the message behind the story? Was it something you specifically wrote a story around or did it develop as your characters came to life?
I didn’t write this story with the intention of having a hidden message or deep meaning, but if had to choose one I would say that this story carries the message to never give up on love. It sounds kind of cheesy when I say it like that but I can’t really think of another way to describe it. I honestly just wanted to write a love story about two very different people who find out that they actually are more alike than they know and eventually find that special connection with each other.
Do you work from an outline or just go with the flow? If you use an outline, how detailed is it?
I kind of do both. Sometimes I just start with the idea and write. Once I get into the story and get to know my characters, I’ll go back and write up an outline of things I’d like to see happen in the story and when. But I never stick to that outline and it’s not very detailed. It’s more of like a list of ideas for each chapter (an example would be: Chapter 10 - Hero and heroine go out on a date to a rodeo and hero’s ex-girlfriend shows up). I know that’s something I’d like to see happen, but I just let the details fill in around themselves as I write the story. I may get to chapter 10 and decide that I don’t want that to happen anymore and completely toss the idea away.
What is the time span in your novel, weeks, months, years? How much research went into it?
This novel’s time span is in months (June to September). As far as research goes... The only amount of research I did was to make sure the town I created didn’t exist :-) Yes I could have chose to use a real town, but I always feel that no matter the amount of research I do to learn about that particular location that I’d never be able to do it justice. Plus it’s a lot more fun getting to create a whole new place from scratch.
How does this book differ from what you have written in the past?
To be honest? This book is a lot sexier than my previous novel. When I published my first novel, When the Heart Falls, I got a lot of reader emails telling me that they really enjoyed it but wished that it had a little more “action” in it—wink, wink, nudge nudge :-) The first draft of Zane didn’t have any actual love scenes (more of a behind closed doors scenario), but to please my readers I decided to take that step out of my comfort zone and give them what they asked for.
How have the changes in present day publishing impacted your schedule as a writer?
Well, I am a self-published author so I have the luxury of not having to worry with someone setting a schedule for me. I write as fast or as slow as I want and only when I am in the creative mood. I do try to put in as much effort as I can to produce my novels as fast as my lifestyle allows me.
How do you handle marketing? Do you have a plan, a publicist or just take one day at a time?
I do all the marketing myself and my husband helps out as well. I try to talk about and share stuff from my works in progress as much as I can. Then as the time gets closer to the book being published, I’ll get in touch with virtual book tour companies and fellow bloggers about doing promotions. I also use my social networks to help market my work. I would like to say I have a plan in place, but I am still very new to the writing world so I tend to just take things one day at a time and learn as much as I can.
Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
I do and it’s actually one of my favorite quotes:
“Write the kind of story you would like to read. People will give you all sorts of advice about writing, but if you are not writing something you like, no one else will like it either.” -Meg Cabot 
Could you tell us what you’re working on now?
Right now I’m working on the second book in my McKades of Texas series. This story revolves around Zane’s younger sister, Norah, and her love interest, Chase O’Donnell.

Synopsis of Zane: 
Kellan Anderson is in hillbilly hell—or at least that’s what it feels like. After enduring endless accounts of abuse from her now ex-boyfriend, Kellan makes a run for her life and finds herself in cowboy country. Leaving her fancy clothes and expensive lifestyle behind her, she trades in her high heels for cowboy boots and changes her name to Andi Ford. With her painful past threatening to catch up with her, hiding out in this small town seems easy enough – until one blonde hair, blue eyed cowboy steps in the picture.
Zane McKade has sworn off women, determining that they are all liars and cheats—including the new waitress at the local bar. After a rather unpleasant first encounter with the beautiful brunette, Zane’s radar is set to high as he believes this woman is not who she claims to be. When his intimidation methods fail to break through Andi’s barrier he decides to turn on the charm to get her to tell the truth. But Zane’s plan begins to backfire as the more time he spends charming Andi, the more he finds himself breaking his own rules and falling for her.

Excerpt from Zane:

     Kellan saw the man coming her way and a nervous feeling began to grow in the pit of her stomach. She hadn’t noticed it when he rode up, but he was incredibly good looking. The man had to be a least six two, with long muscular legs leading up to narrow hips that angled into a very masculine upper body. He looked like an athlete. He looked…solid. And although his pale blue shirt was soaked with sweat, it somehow added to his overall appeal. He stopped at her table and glared at her. Only then did she realize that this man was not coming over for friendly chit-chat and her mood shifted.
     “Is that your red sports car out there?” Zane asked, tilting his head and jerking his thumb towards the parking lot.
     “Yes,” Kellan told him. What’s it to you? She stared up at him, waiting for him to continue. But when he just stared back, his deep blue eyes shooting daggers at her, she decided enough was enough. “Is there something I can help you with?”
     Zane’s jaw flexed. “You could have four miles ago.”
     “What?” She was utterly confused as to what mileage had to do with his apparent anger towards her.
     “I don’t look familiar to you?” He stared at her, his eyebrows coming together in frustration.
     She looked the man over from head to toe. “No, I’m sorry you don’t.”
     Zane let out an exasperated sigh. “How about now?” He raised his arms above his head and waved them just like he had done when he was trying to flag her down.
     He looked completely ridiculous and she fought back the urge to laugh at him. But the more she looked at him she realized that he did look strangely familiar. Oh my… He was the man on the side of the road next to the pickup truck just outside of town.
     “Oh,” Kellan said. “Yes, I do remember you now. I’m sorry I didn’t recognize you with your shirt on.” She loaded her voice with sarcasm and crossed her arms over her chest. If he was going to have an attitude with her, then she was going to give it right back.
     Zane’s eyes narrowed. “Well, would you care to explain why you just blew past me like that?”
     Kellan laughed, quietly as to not draw attention. “Why did I blow past you? Hmm, let me think. Um, maybe it has to do with the fact that you were partially naked and in the middle of nowhere.”
     Well damn. He hadn’t thought about that. He’d been all riled up thinking that some guy just ignored him. Now, thinking about it from her perspective, he could see why she didn’t pull over to help him. As it was though, his built up anger from everything that had transpired today got the best of him and he continued with his rant.
     “I was not half naked,” he said, his voice low as he briefly glanced around the room to see if anyone could hear them speaking.
     “Look, cowboy.” She said the word as though it were an insult and not an affirmation of what he obviously was. “I’m sorry you’re having a bad day, but don’t come over here and take it out on me. I had a good reason for not stopping earlier and I’m not going to apologize for looking after my own safety. You could’ve been a murderer for all I knew.”
     Zane knew that he should just man up and walk away, but he just couldn’t do that now after her snarky “cowboy” remark. Why’d she have to go and say it like that anyway?
     “Look, princess,” he said with the same tone she had used. “This ain’t Hollywood. Take your sunglasses off. You’re inside and you look like a damn fool.”
      Kellan’s jaw fell in disbelief.
     Zane smiled, feeling triumphant that he got in the last word. He turned and started to walk away from her.
     “Screw you, cowboy!” she yelled after him, saying the word exactly as she had before. “And that horse you rode in on.”
     And—Whoops!—now everyone in the diner had turned to look at them.
     Zane turned around to face her with amusement on his face. “Very original, princess.”

Enjoy a guest post form Kimberly
My Advice for Aspiring Writers – 3 Things You Should Know by Kimberly Lewis
Whenever I do an interview I always get the question, “What advice would you give to aspiring authors?” So today I’m going to share with you three things I feel that every aspiring author should know.
1)    Make sure you do your research before you publish.
So you’ve written a book and are now ready for the world to read it. That’s great! But, how exactly are you going to go about getting it published? Make sure you do your research before you go jumping into anything. Some people may find that going the traditional route of publishing is best for them and others may find that going the self-published way is best. What it all comes down to is what you feel most comfortable with. Don’t do something just because someone tells you it’s “the right thing to do”.
2)    You’re job isn’t not done when your book is published.
All self-published authors know what I’m talking about here, but this advice isn’t limited to just the self-published world. When you choose to write a book and publish it, the next step after that is to market your book. You can’t expect to just throw your book out there and call it day hoping someone will stumble upon it and buy it—sadly this is what I did when I published my first book. But I learned my lesson and have since looked into different avenues for marketing my work. A few of the ones I have found to be successful are: Virtual book tours, developing a hype on your social networks (you would usually do this prior to your book coming out), and free promotions.
3)    Make sure you stay in touch with your readers.
It’s a rare thing that you’ll be producing a new book every month, so make sure you are keeping in touch with your readers and letting them know what’s going on in your writing world. Share excerpts from your work in progress, etc. A good way to do this is through social networks, a blog, or a website.
I hope you have found this information helpfulJ Authors, what is the most helpful piece of advice you’ve received?

 Book Link:
*Zane is currently only available in ebook format

Author Links:
Twitter: @klewisnovels

Monday, October 22, 2012

Rebirth has a Publishing Contract!

Great Minds Think Aloud Publishing has offered me a publishing contract for my YA Sci-Fi novel, Rebirth.

Chased from their homes in the city by aliens bent on destruction, three teens suddenly find themselves on the run with little kids in tow. As people vanish and buildings crumble, they seek shelter and safety in the nearby Montana mountains. Survival depends on their ability to adapt with nothing more than the items pilfered from a crumbling store. Hovering in the background is the constant threat of being discovered by the aliens, adding to the pressure the teens already feel having no shelter, a limited supply of food and the well-being of three children to ensure. The teens must come up with some creative solutions before the inevitable onset of winter, while attempting to remain “invisible” to avoid capture. Being mature and responsible is no longer optional as they deal with their individual personalities, traumas, and learn to raise a baby. Unaware of the extent of the alien destruction, they cannot help but wonder if all their survival efforts are in vain.

For now there is no official cover art, but I'll keep you posted!

Feel free to join me and Snoopy in doing the Happy Dance.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Setting; Real or Fictional

Do you write using real settings, or do you create fictional ones? Do you think writing one or the other is easier?

I was helping a friend proof her novel, and came across two different spellings for the town her MC was in. I went online to find the correct spelling and was surprised to learn that the place didn’t exist. She said she did not want to use a real town because she didn’t want readers to say “that doesn’t exist in our town” and such. I laughed, because I had been spending countless hours researching the accuracy of my chosen town. For a moment I considered chucking my approach, but after 30 seconds decided I couldn’t do it. I am too… well, I can’t. I need accuracy and precise details.

Yet, I write Sci-Fi, and it’s hard to be accurate when your setting doesn’t exist. This brings a whole new set of rules into play, because you want the reader to be able to relate to the settings. Another issue I encountered was in borrowing fictional technology. I wanted to create my world, not copy-paste someone else’s into my writing, so you can imagine how thrilled I was when I came across a magazine that paralleled the technology found in sci-fi vs. that found in our reality. I was thrilled to find out that scientists had actually made a “transporter” of sorts, moving a molecule from one point to another, so I had no qualms using it. As for the technology that I had used or created, I wanted to be able to explain it in a way that was credible to my readers. Sometimes, this meant using diagrams, sketches and charts to go with bits of our existing technology, but the result was great.

We are fortunate today, to have endless information at the tips of our fingers, and yet there are authors who cannot be bothered (or so it seems) to be accurate in what they write. It’s not easy to write about a country you’ve never visited, let alone an era, but if you give it a little time and effort, you won’t regret the results. Of course there’s the added bonus that in the end, you will have learned a lot.

I just finished reading a book where the author went out on ride-alongs with the fire department, and interviewed the firefighters to be able to accurately portray both setting and characters. Hats off, she did a great job.

So, how do you do it? Which setting do you prefer? Come on, let us know.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Late at night when the house is quiet, the kids are sleeping and my husband is a few feet away sawing logs, inspiration strikes and I feel the need to record it all. The story is there in a small portion of my brain and it begins to explode through my fingertips onto a blank word document. Soon I realize that I have filled the page up. Then I have to go back and correct the places where my brain has typed the story faster than my hands ever could. This obviously leaves gaps in the stories I write. Sometimes I do not find them unless I read them aloud to someone else. 
            If no one is awake when I feel the need to do this, I often seek my online friends to just listen for a few minutes to me stutter and stammer through a story. If my husband is awake he becomes my listener. My children however will not read or listen to anything I write, because I am old. At least that is what they tell me. I however think that, if they read it or listen to it and actually enjoy it, that they think it will make them less cool than they are, so they just avoid the stories.
            What is funny about this is that I generally include something about them in each story. It could be a picture on the cover that I have taken of them for one of my art classes, or it could be that one of the background characters has their personality or look or something. They know this but still refuse to read or listen to anything I have written. I love my daughters but they are typical teenagers, nothing a parent says or does can be cool, what they do not realize is that this attitude, just fuels more late night writing and is often the inspiration behind the stories in one way or another. 


Leanne Herrera is a mother and grandmother with a BFA in ceramics sculpture. She has always loved telling stories, whether it be in the form of her art, poetry or the written word. She has a love for books and animals. She has traveled the world, first with her father when he was in the military and then with her husband of twenty years who was also in the military. Right now she lives in Florida but one day hopes to own a farm with lots of rescue animals, where she can write and throw clay.


She came home to settle her great grandmothers affairs and figure out her own life. Finding out that her grandmother left her everything including magic powers she forgot to unbind before her death. Anna finds someone to love amidst the war against the woman that was supposed to love her and her twin sister. The mother goddess helps her gain her magic. Can Anna stop her mother before her mother stops her?



Saturday, September 29, 2012

And All I Wanted to do was Write

I am in my 40s, and I have waited almost that long to finally sit down and start writing, really writing. Stories from as far back as middle school have walked alongside me, some more quietly than others, waiting patiently for me to finally bring them to light.
My mind is not without ideas, it seems as though everything around me holds some element of a story, a scene, a character, a possibility. What is missing here is the time to write. Since Amethyst Eyes has come out, I find that I have even less time to write than before. I write guest posts for articles and blogs, I deal with marketing, promoting and coaching other authors and I still have homework to do. I have my own blog, website, marketing and promoting to deal with as well.

Throughout all this, I have a life…my home, husband and children; I work part-time for the Canadian Forces. Only when all this is done can I sit down to write. Of course by then I am ready to pass out.
But I need to write. The voices can no longer be silenced, the urge controlled. I need to get them out of my head and heart so they can take on a life of their own. With the start of the training year, and the end of my writing course, I am struggling to find a rhythm.

Did I know or even understand any of this when I started writing? No. Maybe it was a good thing because I might not have thrown myself into this strange world of being an author. As it is now, I have three more novels getting closer to publication, so I have managed to find the time to write, but more through stolen moments than structured or allotted writing time. My husband thinks I’m cute, trying to write, taking it so seriously…unfortunately he doesn’t take it seriously enough. At least he doesn’t complain about it.

What am I going to do about it? I’m going to keep writing…be it stolen moments or an afternoon of peaceful writing time (one can always hope). With a bit of luck my marketing skills will improve and the task become easier, my routine will level out and I will be able to have writing time. After all, all I wanted to do was write.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Inspiring Blogger Award

Inspiration is contagious.  It comes in many packages and strikes when least expected.
Thank you so much Emaginette for acknowledging that I “…really help your fellow writer and that’s inspiring.” – her words, not mine, passed on from a previous winner to her and now to me.
The rules: link back to the nominator, state seven facts about yourself and nominate five fellow bloggers for the Inspiring Blogger Award.

My Facts:

1. When I get lost in the world I write, I could stay there for hours.
2.The leaves are changing, it is fall. I am happy wearing a thick wool sweater as I prepare a batch of hearty, homemade soup.
3. Family means everything to me.
4. I love to teach, to show and to share. Watching someone learn brings me great joy.
5. Ineed a hand with marketing.
6. I am grateful for all I have.
7. I have seen the darkest side of man, but I have not broken..though I limp a little now.

The nominees are:

Celine and Ela, their posts are amazing and fun...definately inspiring.
Jamie, love her posts, lots of energy in her reviews.
Erik thr Great, this young man is definately an inspiration.
Liz, wonderful woman, author, university student, wife, and now cover design artist
Jill, for supporting so many authors, and feeding them too

Friday, September 21, 2012

MJ Kane and the Butterfly Memoirs Book Release Tour

On Friday, April 27th of 2012, I had the pleasure of hosting author MJ Kane on my blog. She was at the stage in her career as an author where she was sending out queries and waiting for a positive response. We had been chatting (internet) for a little while before this and have kept on since. I have the utmost respect for this amazing woman and when she finally got her acceptance letter I was so excited for her, my husband wanted to know what was going on.  
Now, after sleepless nights leading up to the release of her novel, I get to host her again, as part of the launch tour. She has shared a personal insight into the motivation behind her writing, and now, itis my pleasure to share it with you.
If you want to read the last post on MJ Kane, scroll down a bit and you'll find it on the left.
Writing Has Helped Me Heal
My decision to write was the culmination of many things. The most significant was surviving a traumatic experience.
In 2006, a series of strokes landed me in ICU for two weeks. I was paralyzed on one side of my body for several days. Unable to walk or remember the names of my children, no one knew what my road to recovery would entail. Thankfully, my family stood behind me and pushed me at times when I wanted to give up. I was able to walk, though not fast, out of the hospital after regaining the ability to move my limbs. A few months later, in an attempt to keep mobile and do something I loved, I went back to work taking on a job that was completely different than my previous work. But to no avail, the stress of the job threatened another stroke and had forced me to quite on the spot.
After a few years of struggling to find something to occupy my time, my husband suggested I try writing. I’ve always been an avid reader, and a year before the stroke I’d written a short story based on the television show, LOST. It was a typical Fan-Fic, but it wasn’t half bad. I dug the thirty-page story out of a box, read it, and decided to take my character and give her a whole new life. Pulling from the emotions of my personal experience and those of women and men around me, I created my own form of storytelling.
Life is full of emotional ups and downs. But like my life, after trial, healing, and help from loved ones, my characters emerge like me: changed.

Ebony is a smart, sexy, career-oriented black woman who wants nothing more than a summer fling with a man who challenges her mind and body. What she doesn’t expect is a blond haired, blue-eyed bass player—who won’t take “no” for an answer—to accept the challenge. 
When Ebony’s attempt at a brief fling turns into more, despite negative reactions from friends and family, she finds juggling love, family, and career are nothing compared to the ultimate betrayal she endures. Now her dreams spiral into lies and secrets that threaten her future and her best friend’s trust.  

Available now from 5 Prince Publishing! Buy Now!


M.J. Kane stumbled into writing. An avid reader, this stay at home mom never lost the overactive imagination of an only child. As an adult she made up stories, though never shared them, to keep herself entertained. It wasn’t until surviving a traumatic medical incident in 2006 that she found a reason to let the characters inhabiting her imagination free.  Upon the suggestion of her husband, she commandeered his laptop and allowed the characters to take life. It was that, or look over her shoulder for men caring a purple strait jacket. And the rest, as they say, is history.
No longer a television addict, if M.J. isn’t reading a book by one of her favorite authors, she’s battling with her creative muse to balance writing and being a wife and mother. She resides in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia with her high school sweetheart, four wonderful children, and two pit bulls. MJ can often be found hanging out at the local library where she is director of a local writer’s group, or online connecting with readers and other authors. Other activities she enjoys include: creating custom floral arrangements, assisting her children in their creative pursuits of music and art, and supporting her husband’s music production business, 3D Sounds.

You can find MJ on social networking sites, sharing writing tips, talking about music, life, and family. She’s always excited to meet new people. Connect with her via the websites below. 

This Writer’s Life Blog



Saturday, September 15, 2012

Support and Respect

I know first-hand how difficult the whole publishing/marketing process can be. Once you step out into the free fall world of marketing, you quickly realize that it’s most definitely a long term project. Some of it feels rather mundane, doing the same thing every day, without seeing the results. A lot of effort is put into blog tours, live guest appearances, organizing and strategizing as well as writing our next book. Time is short, and taking a break isn’t really an option, because we can be so quickly forgotten.

Supporting fellow authors is something I believe in.  Most of the authors I have come across willingly do so as well, creating quite a community. Because I know how much work goes into creating a book, I appreciate the support I receive from my fellow authors. However, this mutual support can sometimes put one’s moral convictions on the line.

Personally, I neither read nor write horror, thrillers, or explicit romance, so never mind erotica. Over the past year, I have had the pleasure of meeting countless authors, some with whom I have become close to. Did their style of writing affect my choice? No, because I interact with the person, and I have made some amazing friends. So what’s the problem?

To be honest, and it’s not just because I write YA, I am not comfortable with their choice of genre. I am willing to support them by LIKEing their fb pages and joining their blogs, tweeting their good news and even posting on my ‘good news’ tab, but I become uncomfortable when it comes to promoting their work, having them on for a guest post or interview on my blog.

I was mortified the other day when a friend asked about me having LIKEd a particular author page…because I had been going down a list, clicking LIKE and never noticed that John Doe’s page was actually John Doe’s erotica page. Now I was torn, I didn’t want to UNLIKE his page, but I was not comfortable having it listed. Fortunately, it wasn’t my book page that had liked it, so my target audience is not subject to this. What did I do? I removed access to my LIKEs and preferences. So it’s a win/win situation. At least I hope so.

As an author, I can use all the support I can get and I definitely want to give it back. But I want to do it in a way that won’t make me uncomfortable, and won’t go against my personal values.  

There have been a few authors on my blog whose books I will never read. That does not mean I do not want to help give them a boost, or a little visibility from my corner of the world. Maybe I need to step out of my comfort zone, just a little, but I need to do it in a way that is respectful of my audience, and my personal values.

I will continue to support my fellow authors, join groups, tweet and share their news and events, but I do so with a little more attention, and a lot more intention. I want to see us all succeed, and I want to enjoy the celebration when it happens. Hope you will be there to join in as well.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

One Lovely Blog Award

Yes, :o) I was offered this lovely award by the Curse of the Bibliophile blog, who is Mad About Books, and I want to thank you.

Here are the requirements for the award:
1. Include the picture in the post
2.Thank the person who nominated you
3. Nominate at least 15 other blogs
4. Tell Nominees
5. Give 7 random things about yourself
* * *
My 7 Randomness's are:
I love languages
I love reading for hours on end, and when I'm too tired to read, my kindle reads to me
I want time to stand still, just for a moment, so I can catch my breath
 I love the smell of nature, fir trees, fresh cut grass , wild flowers and mountain air, but most of all the first snow
I wish I could breathe underwater
I love Star Trek and I even own a uniform, tons of books and stuff
I love to cook and bake, but there are days I wish someone would do it for me (or at least with me)

My Nominees are:
OK, so that's that...back to you tomorrow with a little on writing

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Author Lyra McKen

I have the feeling things will be moving at a greater rate than before, for the blog, that is. I have a list of authors who would like to be interviewed and I will do my best to present them to you. Now, as  YA sci-fi author, today's genre is new to me. Although I love to read, I can honestly say I have never read a Zombie book yet. So without further delay, allow me to introduce you to the very lovely, and God I hope she's not a zombie,  Lyra McKen (aka, Emily Walker).

How Zombified Was Born
When asked to discuss how I came up with the concept and story line for my novel Zombified, I had to think back. I had to think of where I was mentally when the idea formed. I had been annoying my family and boyfriend for weeks talking about the Zombie Apocalypse. My Dad would say something about, "If the economy doesn't do something then we are in for it." That isn't exactly what he said, my father doesn't speak like that, but for the sake of this article that is what he said. I would respond with, "The Zombies will take over!"
As annoyed as my family was, I was fascinated with Zombies and why they enthralled our culture so. I begin to think how would you feel if you knew you were going to start eating people and rotting away? Cassie started to form in my mind. She was a young girl with a bright future, derailed by a disease and the end of life as she knew it. I then started thinking, what if Zombies actually could communicate and had a purpose with their constant wondering around. Slopar was born, my idea of the Zombie language. I pictured Cassie talking to someone about her life as she snacked on him and wrote the beginning.
After this I started thinking, what if you bit your crush? I had to give Cassie a gorgeous guy, figure out how to get them alone, and let her ruin it with her soon-to-be-dead tendencies. I really enjoyed writing the novel. I wanted to explore the thoughts of the partially infected, and what would happen when they met up and tried to fight the desire to feed as the infection spread. I hope people enjoy reading Zombified as much as I enjoyed writing it. Thanks for taking a trip into my mind.
xx Lyra Mcken

Author Bio

Lyra McKen (aka, Emily Walker) resides in the mountains of North Carolina. She lives on top of a mountain quite literally with her other half of nine years and her fur baby, Rebel. After a couple of jobs ghost writing for other successful authors she embarked on her own journey to write a novel.

 “Cassie, wake up.” He stood back up over me as I sat up and rubbed my eyes.

I noticed that Ted was not with him, and he looked defeated as he sat down on the floor beside me. I crawled over to wrap my arms around him, and he looked surprised at first but then he put his arm around me and we were silent for a little while.

“We are going to have to move soon.” Brett was speaking quietly as he rubbed my arm. “He knows where we are, so when he wakes up, he may come for us. I was too late to help him.”

I did not know how long Brett had been gone, but I assumed by his tone that he had found his friend in very bad shape. It scared me that if he turned into one of them then he would know where we were. I sighed as I leaned my head on Brett’s shoulder. Something struck me as odd as I inhaled his scent. I thought that he smelled tasty.

Tasty! I was alarmed. He smelled good, but tasty was not something that should describe my crush. Something bad was happening to me, and I could keep trying to fight it, but as I glanced at my finger, I knew in the back of my mind it was only going to get worse.

He was looking at me while I was having all these thoughts, and he was too close for comfort. He smiled as he took my face in his hands and brought his lips to mine. It was everything I had hoped for in our first kiss. There were fireworks, and my whole body felt alive. I allowed him to ease me down onto the tarp and welcomed his body weight on top of me. This felt right and I wanted him all over me just like this. I had dreamed of this moment countless times and it was finally happening.

Our kisses became more urgent, and he moved one hand down to slide up my shirt. I heard a low growl come from somewhere within me. Something wasn’t right. It happened very quickly, but before I knew it, I had reared back and bitten into his chin hard. He cried out in severe pain, and tried to push me off of him, but I was latched on. I felt the skin break in my mouth, and felt my hunger as I ripped the skin away from his face. When I realized what I had done, I was horrified.

I stood back thinking of how I could remedy the situation. He sat there with blood pouring from his face and a hurt look in his eyes. All I could think of was one word: tasty. I had to get out of there. What the hell had I done? How many times had I pictured my lips near his, and I manage to get them there by biting his face off? I had to get as far away from him as possible. I ran out the entrance and into the school hall. Tears were streaming down my cheeks as I contemplated where to go. I was changing into one of those monsters.

I had literally bitten my crush’s face off!


Cassie is a typical teenager.  She’s crushing on a boy and trying to make it through high school. It’s a typical day of classes when all hell breaks loose. Forced to run and hide the situation just keeps getting worse. She makes a mistake and soon becomes infected. She meets others like her and together they sent out to find a cure. Is their fate already sealed? Can they find a cure before it’s too late? See what happens through the eyes of the infected when Cassie tells you how Zombies are people too.