Thursday, February 28, 2013
I'm pleased as punch to help Myndi Shafer announce the release of her new book, The Darkening. Even the name gives me the shivers! So here we go...
As Aydan Fulbert settles into her new life in a new world, she realizes a few things. She’s healing from losing Brig. She’s coming to terms with her new home. And she’s lonely.
Rein Torvald’s return from his long absence helps alleviate her loneliness, but a darkness comes with him. Unsettling news about her father and the Sovereign has the potential to make her a fugitive all over again - from his world and hers.
Will Aydan allow her heart to be taken places she’s never been brave enough to go? Or will the threat of danger - of the Sovereign’s rage, and her father’s vengeful grudge, send her running?
What was the inspiration behind The Darkening?
When I first wrote this story, Shrilugh and The Darkening were all one book, told solely from Aydan’s POV. When I changed the POV, the story really exploded, and needed to be divided into more than one book. Which is why the first book of the Saga ended rather abruptly, and why, if you read these two back-to-back, they’ll feel a bit like one piece of work.
So, really, the inspiration for The Darkening came from the same place as my inspiration for Shrilugh: an old silo on the farm where I was raised. There’s a ladder that extends up past the top of it that looks kind-of like a door, and I’ve always, always wondered where that door would lead. When I began writing Shrilugh that was my goal - to find out what kind of world was beyond that door.
How did you decide to write fantasy?
It wasn’t ever a conscious decision. In fact, when I began writing, I didn’t know I was writing fantasy. I didn’t know there were genres like that. I mean, I liked reading (okay, loved reading), but I never paid attention to genres. I’d just read whatever I could get my hands on. I began writing with that same attitude, and the story just kind-of went where the story went.
I don’t think I’ll ever be a writer that sticks to a strict genre. I’ve got a couple new stories brewing in my head - one that’s a little dystopian (hmmm, is there such thing as a little dystopian?), and one that’s a sort-of rom-com with weird fantastical elements (the world around the protag shifts randomly into a pirate’s world). Mostly I think I’ll just write whatever sounds like fun at the time.
What’s one thing about you that will surprise readers most?
Oh my gosh, this is a silly question. I have the most tame, Beaver-Cleaver-type life you could imagine. I’m probably the least surprising person in the world. Well, okay, there’s this - I really enjoy folding laundry. I love seeing the tidy piles build up, and thinking about my kiddos and how they’ve grown, and the smell of clean laundry. It’s soothing.
*heavy sigh* I just re-read that and realized how lame I sound. I wish I could have had something way cooler like, “Oh, I go parachuting,” or “Big game hunting in Zimbabwe is totally my thing”. But nope. I’ve chosen to stun you all with laundry.
What’s coming next?
Couple different things. I’ll be working on the third book in the Shrilugh Saga. Right now its working title is FRUITION, and I’m expecting to see its release in a year or so. I’m also working on a new series whose working title is called SALT MINE. It’s about a girl who has chosen to be mute, a government that’s after her secret, a dog that’s been ‘progammed’ to protect her, and a guy hell-bent on keeping his promise to her dead brother.
Where can readers find you?
I hang out on Facebook here: Myndi Shafer Stories
I chat on Twitter using the handle @MyndiShafer
And my website/blog is http://www.myndishafer.wordpress.com/
Myndi Shafer is author of the best-selling book, Shrilugh. Currently she makes her home in Kansas with her husband and four children. Her second book, The Darkening, releases in February 2013.
The Darkening can be found on Amazon.
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
I'll stop babbling now.
When I first started showing Legasea to beta readers, I was surprised that most of them, prior to reading the novel, did not know what a selkie was. I was introduced to the legends by my mother, who showed me the movie, The Secret of Roan Inish. From there, I combed the Internet for any information I could find about them.
A selkie is a seal that can shed his or her skin and transform into a human, and while I took liberties with some of the "rules," I still based my selkies off of the Irish and Scottish legends.
There are many stories where a human male steals and hides a female's skin, then forces her to become his wife. The tales always end in heartache with the woman finding her skin, sometimes many years later, and returning to the sea. Often, she takes their children with her and drowns her husband. While the selkies in my novel aren't quite as cruel, I managed to work a version of that into my story.
Another legend tells that a woman must cry seven tears into the sea in order to summon a selkie male. That makes an appearance in Legasea as well.
In addition to pulling from the legends, I took inspiration from The Secret of Roan Inish. My characters' lifestyle, heritage, and a couple of the names are influenced by that movie.
When sixteen-year-old Aileen Shay sees a dead girl floating in the bay during a midnight yacht party, she never imagines Jamie Flannigan, her new boyfriend, may be involved. The only thing she knows about Jamie is that he personifies the one thing she has been drawn to her entire life – the ocean. But as she grows closer to him, she realizes he knows more about the murder than he's telling. When another girl is attacked, and Jamie refuses to answer her questions, Aileen searches for answers on her own.
Aileen learns that Jamie's family belongs more to myths and legends than they do in the real world. They are selkies, and after the Flannigans threaten her family, Aileen suspects they are responsible for both attacks.
But they aren't the only ones in her small fishing town who can keep a secret.
As Aileen uncovers the truth about the murder, the selkies, and her own family, she learns why her soul is bonded to the sea. But with that revelation comes a choice – to permanently sever her connection with the water, which comes at a painful cost, or embrace a legacy that just might get her killed.
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Llona will do whatever it takes to protect her new found friends and home, but the dark plot threatening Lucent Academy, a school that’s supposed to be a safe place for Auras, may be too powerful for even Llona to defeat. This fast-paced tale of love, loyalty, and overcoming the darkness will keep you on the edge of your seat until the last page!
As soon as the Vyken appeared in the doorway, I tossed a ball hard. He dodged it by jumping up along the side of the wall, his nails and bare toes somehow finding a hold in the thin cracks of the wall. I threw another one, but he was already moving, scrambling alongside the stones like a spider. He was grinning.
I rolled away from the wall until I was in the middle of the room. I lost sight of him for just a fraction of a second, but that was enough. The Vyken was gone, or, I should say, hiding. He was still here. I could feel him. I looked up toward the rafters of the tower roof. It was pitch black.
At the bottom of the tower, I heard Christian begin to ascend the stairs. “I’m coming, Llona!” he yelled.
Still staring up, I created Light again in the palm of my hand and willed it to rise. The closer it got to the rafters the faster my heart beat. Sweat rolled down the small of my back.
Light began to fill dark spaces, exposing that which wished to remain hidden. My Vyken was there, but he wasn’t alone. Another sat crouched on a beam. Where his left eye should’ve been there was an empty hole.
I screamed when my Vyken dropped from the ceiling, extinguishing the light. He fell onto my stomach, pushing my shoulders into the floor. I tried to create Light, but it was as if he knew what I was going to do because his hands slipped up and pinned my wrists together. He bent forward and inhaled my skin. The warmth of his breath steamed my ear when he said, “I’m going to eat every part of you.”
“I love these books! A kick-butt heroine and a hottie love interest, with a refreshingly original concept. Be prepared—once you start, these are hard to put down.”
—Paula Cotton, book reviewer at ReadingLark.blogspot.com
“Fractured Soul is a brilliant sequel, exceeding even the remarkable first book in the series. It will haunt your every waking moment between the times you’re reading it, and it will stay with you long after you’ve finished. It’s an amazingly well written and engrossing story that I highly recommend—after you’ve read the first one, of course.”
—Cindy Bennett, bestselling author of Geek Girl and Rapunzel Untangled
Rachel McClellan was born and raised in Idaho, a place secretly known for its supernatural creatures. When she's not in her writing lair, she's partying with her husband and four crazy, yet lovable, children. Rachel's love for storytelling began as a child when the moon first possessed the night. For when the lights went out, her imagination painted a whole new world. And what a scary world it was...
Monday, February 25, 2013
We need your help! Thanks to our spy, Ciara Knight, we are able to communicate with you today via blogs, Facebook, Twitter and other social media.
The Neumarian uprising has begun. We are fighting for freedom and equality for all, but we need your help. Ciara informed us that you might want to know more about the uprising and why we ask you to risk your lives for our cause. To answer these questions I’ve agreed to let Ciara tell my sister’s, Raeth’s, story about her captivity. It will be free for you on a site called Amazon until March 1, 2013.
Our spies have told us this will help spread the word and find more recruits for our rebellion against the tyrannical queen. You can help by simply downloading a free copy of Weighted HERE, a prequel to the Neumarian Chronicles. If you are intrigued and wish to follow our uprising, Escapement, book I of The Neumarian Chronicles, will be available for only $2.99 until March 1, 2013, HERE.
Escapement is told by Princess Semara. Don’t hold the fact Semara is a princess against her like I did, there is more to her than you can possibly imagine.
Here is a brief explanation of her telling of our uprising:
“A heady mix of action adventure and steampunk -- leavened with a dash of romance -- ESCAPEMENT offers up its fair share of thrills, horrors and heart-pounding moments. A strong start to a captivating new series.”
“A riveting tale of justice, mercy, honor and love. Take a deep breath and hold on, because you'll be turning the pages of Escapement quickly. Three unlikely comrades, Princess Semara, Ryder, and his sister Raeth, embark on a journey that will alter their lives forever. The beautiful love story nestled into these action-packed scenes will make you sigh and remember why you love to love. After reading the prequel Weighted, I knew this story would be amazing, and it was. Ciara Knight truly has a gift for creating awesome worlds and characters you won't forget.”
“Betrayal, secrets, and a rebellion send readers on a grand adventure, caught in the plight to discover Semara’s gifts and purpose.”
If you’d like to see a peek into our world, please view this short clip on You Tube: http://youtu.be/MyasLq8ZpYg
If you are now ready to join our fight, please add Escapement to your TBR shelf on Goodreads HERE.
Friday, February 22, 2013
A storm gathers across the galaxy…
Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, his only struggles are occasional rogue pirate raids and endless government bureaucracies. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.
After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, shaking Bassan to the core and threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.
Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could be on its way back. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…
Release date: September 17, 2013
Science Fiction - Space Opera/Adventure
Print ISBN 9781939844002
E-book ISBN 9781939844019
I totally got sprayed!
Thursday, February 21, 2013
Title: 1304 – The Harbinger (The 13th Floor series, #4)
Author: Christine Rains
Genre: paranormal romance
Release date: March 13th, 2013
Meira Harper loves both her jobs: talking about beautiful shoes and fetching souls for Zeus. But the Thunder God threatens the harpy's loyalty to her job when she receives the call to bring the soul of gorgeous Sam Wright. Meira pleads with her boss to let him live. Zeus agrees, but Sam must fight for his life. If Sam can win three challenges, he can keep his soul.
The gods never play fairly, though, so Meira needs to find ways to help Sam with the challenges. She cannot outwardly cross her master, but she refuses to let the man she loves lose his soul. They haven't even had a chance to start a life together.
Sam's soul is on the line. Meira's will be too if she's caught, but that's a risk she's willing to take.
Christine Rains is a writer, blogger, and geek mom. She has four degrees which help nothing with motherhood, but make her a great Jeopardy player. When she's not writing or reading, she having adventures with her son or watching cheesy movies on Syfy Channel. She's a member of Untethered Realms and S.C.I.F.I. The 13th Floor series is her first self-published series. She has five novellas and eighteen short stories published.
Website . Blog . Facebook . Twitter . Goodreads
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Thanks to all who tweeted and promoted me through Writers 4 Writers. I'll post the results soon.
Monday, February 18, 2013
Writers 4 Writers.
needs you to spring her!
The loot is hidden below. Grab some.
Hurry! And Thank You So Much!
(and I hear Melissa needs sprung, too)
Tweets to copy and paste:
For Monday and Tuesday GUTG is FREE:
RT plz! Snuggle on down with Givin’ Up The Ghost. #FREE 2/18 – 2/19 a cozy read http://tinyurl.com/ctnnn4b #Kindle #GivUpTheGhost #UnRealms #W4WS
RT plz! Murder and Ghosts and Mayhem, Oh My! Givin’ Up The Ghost FREE 2/18 – 2/19 http://tinyurl.com/ctnnn4b #ebook #GivUpTheGhost #W4WS #WS4U
RT plz! Attn bookworms, cozy down with Givin’ Up The Ghost for #FREE ! 2/18 – 2/19 http://tinyurl.com/ctnnn4b #ebook #YANinjas #W4WS #WS4U
For Wednesday and Beyond:
RT plz! Snuggle down with Givin’ Up The Ghost. A cozy paranormal mystery http://tinyurl.com/ctnnn4b #GivUpTheGhost #ebook #UnRealms #W4WS #WS4U
RT plz! Murder and Ghosts and Mayhem, Oh My! Givin’ Up The Ghost http://tinyurl.com/ctnnn4b #ebook #UnRealms #W4WS #GivUpTheGhost #WS4U
RT plz! Attn bookworms, cozy down with Givin’ Up The Ghost, a cozy paranormal YA mystery http://tinyurl.com/ctnnn4b #ebook #kindle #W4WS #WS4U
Retweets are easy. Just go to your
Twitter page and enter any of these hashtags in the search bar.
Click Retweet on any Givin' Up The Ghost tweets.
Tweets for Giveaways:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Friday, February 15, 2013
Okay, they're calling it "bail."
Can you meet #W4WS demands on Monday?
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Paranormal romance readers are the most loyal and passionate fans. They attend more conventions, buy more merchandise, and write more fanfiction than fans of any other genre. Without a doubt, these are the fans you want, but that's no easy task.
The basics of marketing apply to all writers. (See five tips on M. Pax's blog today!) To get those amazing fans, you'll have to go that extra mile. Here are five suggestions on how to promote your paranormal romance book:
1. Submit your book to romance review sites like Bitten by Books and Smexy Books. This is a scary prospect. There's no guarantee they'll even review your story, but the advantages to receiving a good review should overpower your fears.
2. Book covers. Readers do judge books based on their covers. Make sure you have a professional cover, of course, but paranormal romance is about mystery, love, and something out of the ordinary. Look at the covers of your favorite books in this genre and see what sells. A supernatural creature, a mysterious symbol, or a hot woman and/or man. Or all of those things. Find out what works best for the tone of your story.
3. There are many book clubs and groups about certain paranormal creatures. You'll easily find many sites dedicated to vampires and werewolves. The Fae, demons, dragons, and even gods. Join the groups, start up discussions, and network.
4. When holding contests and bloghops, keep the mood of your paranormal romance. Is it really sexy? Give away your book with a gift certificate to Victoria's Secret. Is it about vampires? Give away your book with a cape or fake fangs.
5. Do something out of the ordinary. Visit haunted houses and post pictures on your blog or host a real life zombie walk. The readers are looking for something extraordinary. Give it to them in your book and through your promotions.
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: never give up. You won't become an undead sensation overnight. Yet if you can nab the attention of these fantastic fans, you'll have a following for life.
On the rooftop of neighboring building, dragonslayer Xanthus Ehrensvard fires at his target, Governor Whittaker. How he missed the shot, he doesn't know, but fleeing the scene, he picks up an unwanted passenger. Gorgeous reporter Lois King saw Xan's face, and she believes it's the story to make her career. Except he can't let her walk away knowing what he looks like. Xan has to show her the Governor is a bigger threat to the world than he is.
Xan knows dragons never went extinct. They evolved with human society, taking on mortal forms, and slithered their way into positions of great influence and power, just like the Governor. But it's no easy chore proving to someone that dragons still exist, and even more so, they're disguised as famous people. Xan must convince Lois or find another way to silence her. An option, as he gets to know her, he likes less and less.
After all, dragonslayers are no longer celebrated heroes but outlaws. Just as the dragons wish it. But this outlaw must make a plan to slay the dragon or risk its retribution.
1303 – The Dragonslayer
“I watched the Governor's estate for months trying to figure out the best way to get in. Security is tight and they always check everyone coming in thoroughly. No one gets in without an invitation, and since you weren't invited . . . .” Xan lifted his night vision binoculars and surveyed the grounds again. Nothing. Not even a squirrel.
“It's the middle of the night. The guard is probably sleeping in the booth.” Lois sighed, squirming in her seat.
“He's not sleeping. In four minutes, he'll come out and check the front gate as he has a cigarette. They run on a rigid schedule.” Xan checked his watch again and nodded once. There was no easy way to do it. He'd have to break in one way or another, and the dragon would know he's coming.
“Well, how about this? The guard comes out for his cigarette and a beautiful woman just happens by. She's a little tipsy and lost, someone stole her purse so she doesn't have her cell. She flashes some leg and asks to use his phone. He opens the gate and POW! You come out of nowhere and you're in.”
“You're not going in.” Xan stated in a hard tone. “I can do the same act. Without flashing some leg.”
Lois snorted as she laughed. “Yeah, right. Your acting skills suck. And besides, who would believe a big guy like you got his wallet stolen? Seriously, I've done stuff like this before. It's a piece of cake.”
She opened the door and was out before he could protest again. Xan growled and pushed his door, stepping out. He was ready to shove her back inside again, but peeked at his watch once more. Time was of the essence.
He rounded the car and laid a hand on the roof as he whispered to her. “You wait in the car. If you see anything going on in the house, call 911.”
“Isn't something supposed to be going on in the house?” Lois folded her arms.
“Yes, but if I'm able to do what I need to do, you won't be able to tell something's going on. If things start to go wrong, it'll get noisy.” To say the least. “My main objective is to find the girl and get her out.”
“And kill Whittaker.” She added with a hard look.
“I will kill him, but when we meet, it'll be messy. I want the girl out of there first.” Though that scenario would be ideal, Xan didn't believe he'd get in without the dragon's notice. It was the Governor's territory after all. The modern security system would be enough to deter anyone, but a dragon didn't need the technology. He would know when someone entered his lair.
“Okay. Alyssa first. And yes,” Lois groaned. “Once you bring the girl out, I'll take her to the police. Don't stop for anything. Alert the media too just in case the police are in Whittaker's pocket.”
Xan breathed out, forcing his overly tense muscles to relax. This just might work. The odds were stacked against him, but if he could manage to get in without sounding an alarm, he might be able to save the girl.
“Thank you.” He wanted to stuff Lois back in the car. Every bit of him screamed to keep her safe. This was no place to make a scene, though.
Lois grabbed him by the collar of his fireproof black jacket and yanked him to her. Her mouth mashed against his. Supple and hard, hot and desperate. There was a hint of caramel from her coffee on her lips to add a bit of sweetness to a kiss that was anything but. An electric tingling raced from his ears to his toes, and a rush of adrenaline that had nothing to do with the mission ahead.
He didn't realize he was kissing her back until she pulled away. Lois made a small sound, something between pleasure and frustration.
“Good. Now I'm flushed. I look much more drunk. It's been four minutes.” She ran her hands through her hair, but it only looked more tussled. She hitched up her skirt a few inches. Her long legs pale and gorgeous in the moonlight. “Good luck.”
Lois winked at him and wobbled down the sidewalk before he could gain enough sense to grab her. She crossed the road to pass the gate of Whittaker's estate and stumbled once. Not in front of the gate, but near it. Enough to make some noise so the guard came to the gate to peer out. He stood watching her as she walked toward him.
Damn tricky woman. There was no way he could stop her now without ruining everything. Fury coursed through him, but also a frustrating sense of admiration.
Find The Dragonslayer here:
Amazon . B&N . Smashwords . Kobo . GoodReads
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
• Help writers bring awareness of their book(s) to tens of thousands of new people
• Help writers reach Amazon Top 100 in at least one category (i.e., suspense, free, whatever)
• Increase sales of their book(s) after the promo is over
• Drive new traffic to their blog and increase following
• Create verbal and viral buss.
The premise is brilliant and so simple. If you sign up on the linky list to be featured, everyone on the list will support you by tweeting and sharing on Facebook. That, along with the support from your followers serves to get you and your books in front of the masses.
So--if this Confundus Charm works *waves wand and casts spell* -- all you'll want to do next week is tweet and share about moi on Facebook beginning next Monday. I will provide/post the tweets/hashtags on Monday so all you have to do is copy/paste into your twitter box.
Here's my promotion plan:
- Monday and Tuesday Givin' Up The Ghost ebook will be FREE on Amazon
- On Monday I'll post tweets for you to copy/paste into your Twitter
- I'll post hashtags (i.e, #W4WS) that you can enter into your Twitter search box so that you can simply Retweet what's already there (this way you can just hit retweet on as many as you want at the same time).
- I'll run a GoodReads Giveaway of 2 autographed paperbacks with bookmarks
- I'll run a Rafflecopter Giveaway here and on Facebook with 2 autographed paperbacks with bookmarks - all you have to do to enter is Tweet or Retweet
If you want to be a featured author, you can sign up HERE.
Monday, February 11, 2013
Clara is younger than most trainees, but she is ready to hold a Sword Master's blade. While visions and ancient prophecies stand in her way, they also offer a destiny unlike any other. Clara is aided by a haunted mentor, Stelia, whose knowledge of their enemy Kalidess is both a bane and a blessing. As evil threatens their land, Clara and Stelia must find the strength to overcome the darkness.
Champion in the Darkness is YA Christian Fantasy, and is the first book in the Champion Trilogy.
Tyrean Martinson lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest, encouraged by her multi-talented husband and daughters. She likes to write, read, teach, ski, bicycle, walk, and sometimes she likes to sing and dance in the rain.
Using her degree in Secondary Education with an emphasis in English, Tyrean homeschools her two daughters and teaches writing and literature classes at a homeschool co-op.
Tyrean has been published in e-zines like Every Day Poets, Every Day Fiction and Mindflights, and a few print anthologies like The Best of Every Day Poets and Sunday Snaps: The Stories. Champion in the Darkness is her first book, but she plans to write many more.
Champion in the Darkness can be found at these links:
Amazon . Smashwords . Goodreads
Friday, February 8, 2013
Miranda Hardy writes children's literature to keep the voices in her head appeased. When she's not in her fantasy world, she's canoeing in alligator infested waters or rescuing homeless animals. She resides in south Florida with her two wonderful children, and too many animals to mention.
Rimi Rasheed is a professional in primary education yet follows a passion in digital illustrating, and much of her work is focused on children. She is well known for her colourful creations of lovable characters, most of which can be found on her blog. She lives in Maldives with her husband and two children.
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
This is where we tell the world about our insecurities, and then bloghop around to our fellow writers blogs to lend support. You can sign up or see the list of participants HERE.
You may have noticed I've been MIA lately. That's because I've been working on a new project and my current insecurity, Second Death. It's a new novella series (An Indigo Eady Afterlife novella) off-shoot of my first series (Givin' Up The Ghost.) My protag, Indigo, is a teenage ghost whispering psychic who can see and speak to ghosts, which is instrumental in solving the murder of her friend's dad.
My new novella series was actually inspired by the second book in the series, A Guilty Ghost Surprised (not yet published). There is a scene where Indigo has a conversation with Franny, a Victorian ghost madam. Franny reveals to Indigo that there is a whole spirit community in Sabrina Shores (mostly Victorian) that basically is parallel to the living world. They have community meetings, court each other, and socialize as if they're still alive.
Second Death is...more fanciful, to say the least. It picks up from the conversation between Indigo and Franny about the overactive spirit community in Sabrina Shores and takes it a bit over the top. Indigo is basically drafted onto the Missing Paranormals Committee by a ghostly high court judge during court proceedings of the highly active spirit world. She must serve on the committee alongside other spirits.
The series will also introduce other such afterlife characters that have been mutated (my theme for the A-Z!)by what they had become in previous lives and other paranormal creatures and paranormal happenings. But I think it still encompasses the light paranormal characteristics of my first series.
So you see - Indigo becomes much more active in the spirit world, rather on the periphery. AND there are some pretty off the wall creatures.
I worry that it may be too over the top and wonder whether it will reflect on my original series in any way because I'm using some of the same characters.