Friday, June 29, 2012

The Friday Five - Kindle Free Promotions

Yesterday was my first day of free Kindle promotion. I woke up yesterday morning thinking: during this 5-day free period, I want to give away 1,000 copies of The Treasure Hunter's Lady. One thousand people somewhere on this earth will surely download my book in the coming days. Then I was thinking, gee, that's a lofty goal. It'll never happen. I'll be lucky to get 100.

Let me show you what my downloads looked like at 8 AM CST.
THL is on the bottom.


1700 downloads equates to 
Yesterday at go-home time I was #3.

In the UK?
Gee, not quite 200. Doesn't seem like much, does it? But I've heard it said that the UK is behind us as far as e-books go. So where's this put me on a chart?

So, people who think self-publishing isn't worth anything, got a question for you. You're going to eat your words, how do you want them served?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

My Birthday Wish

Huzzah! I'm 19 today! What's that? Eleven years running? No, I'm sure you're mistaken about that. Last year was my eight--oh, yeah. Twenty-ninth birthday. So that makes me . . . one plus twenty-nine is . . . yeah, that's 19. Of course my math is right, no question. Party on!

Cake for everyone!

Also a huge shout out:

Happy Birthday, Mom!


Yes, it's her birthday too. Happy birthday, Mom! I love you!


You can thank her and my dad for this next bit because if there was no me, there'd be no freebie (I rhymed, it's my birthday, I can do whatever I want. I'm pretty sure that's a law.)


To celebrate this most joyous of occasions (one can never have too many 19th birthdays), I'm giving you a gift.


What is it? What is it? What is it?


Hold on to your hot pants, Kindle lovers. 


You, yes you and you and you and even that person you're not fond of, but you love me enough that you want to spread the word and you'll tell him too, can download The Treasure Hunter's Lady for FREE. I'm not kidding (would I do that to you?) that's F-R-E-E, today through July 2nd.

My crowning glory, my biggest achievement to date, the story that I knew would forever endear me to your hearts, is my gift to you. It's my hope that you'll laugh with Abel and Romy, that you'll commiserate when they're sad, that you'll stay up all night long and be late for work on Friday morning because you couldn't put it down. Tell your boss it was my birthday and you had to help make my wish come true. I'm sure he or she will understand. And then tell him or her that not only were you helping, it's a FREE book, so he or she can read it too!

I'm sure that'll totally get you a pass. Your boss will probably think you're so kind and generous that you might even get a day off. Hopefully not permanently . . .

So click HERE to get your free download. I'm going to blow out the candle on my cake and that's my birthday wish: that you'll all enjoy The Treasure Hunter's Lady as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Pretty Pictures 'Cause I'm Tired

Today, because I'm reeling from an exhausting weekend (which is partially due to extreme heat--the National Weather Service thermometer in my office confirms temps at 100.2 yesterday), I'm giving you photos from Saturday night at the Hurley Fireworks display. I took these with my new birthaversary present, a camera my husband of eight years bought for me (and my birthday is this week too). That's eight years today, kids. Sometimes we joke it feels more like 800. 

I even named them for you.

Fiery

Forcefield

God Barf (I hope that's not blasphemy. If it is, we'll call it
Thor Barf because it just looks like something a god barfed up.
Not in a bad way . . . okay, I'm done here.)

Many Burst

Purple Flower

Streamers

Streamers II

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Come On In Outta That Heat, Don't Dawdle, The Air's On.




Great googly-moogly! Today is the first day of summer. I hope you're all enjoying the hop and are prepared to win stuff from some of your favorite authors. If you're lost or out of the hop loop, you can access it from here: http://justromance.me

Not that kind of peeper.
Summer is my favorite time of year. Tan lines, flip flops, shorts, sunshine, and sweet ice tea. Okay, sure, it's practically sub-tropical here in the Midwest, but I love the long days (shh, don't tell me they'll start getting shorter from now on, I don't want to hear that), quiet evenings spent on the porch around the citronella candle, and the sounds of the peepers and cicadas.

You're getting a two-fer today. Let's start with a tie-in with the Friday Five, since the hop is running all weekend, I'm going to spout off five facts about the solstice. So settle in, pour you a lemonade, prepare to learn and read, and maybe even win something.




 The Druids celebrated the Summer Solstice as the "wedding of Heaven and Earth", thus resulting in the belief that June is a lucky wedding month.

The solstice coincided with the flooding of the Nile in ancient Egypt. They believed it was the goddess Isis mourning for her deceased husband Osiris.

 Pagans built bonfires and jumped over them, believing their crops would grow as high as they could jump. (Is that where the saying "that really burns my ass" is from?)

 In ancient Greece summer solstice was the one month countdown to the Olympic games.

 Scholars believe Wyoming's Bighorn medicine wheel, built by Plains Indians, aligns at sunrise and sunset and was a sight for the sun dance, which began on the solstice.


And for your reading pleasure, a steamy first kiss from the steampunk romance novel I very recently decided not to release this summer, The Sky Pirate's Wife.


He brushed his fingers along her jaw, toward the back of her head where her neck and skull met. A series of hairpins held her curls up. With one or two quick movements, he slipped them out, letting them fall to the floor. The bottom of her hair tumbled down around her shoulders, creating a veil over the creamy skin of her neck.
"Ah, Sophie. You are a vision." He wanted to bury his nose in her hair. He wanted to sweep her up and carrying her into his room, watch the dress slide into a puddle at her feet and bare her skin.
She didn't seem to notice he'd ruined her hair. Her face tipped up to his. She wanted to kiss him. Her tongue ran over her lower lip, moistening the skin there. Hemmel help him, he was going to do everything he'd just considered if she didn't step away now.
Sophie,” he said again.
Her hands curled into this jacket. It wasn't enough force to pull him down to her level, but he went at the tug of cloth anyway.
Kiss me, Alwin. Right now. If that will get you out of here, if you won't be satisfied until you kiss me, then do it.”
Hardly the words he wanted to hear. He liked flattery as much as the next man, but he smiled at the challenge. “You are something else, meisje. I haven't figured out what. Aye, I want to kiss you, and when I do, you will forget everything except that kiss, do you understand?”
Her eyes widened and she leaned in closer. Tempting him. She'd realize his attraction now for certain. But if she did, she didn't raise the point.
Do you believe that you can resist kissing me?” Sophie's voice was soft, a mere whisper against his face.
Of course I can.”
For a few long seconds, they looked into each other's eyes, each silently daring the other to make a move. They relented at the same time, a meeting of desire and hot flesh. Van Buren's tongue parted her lips. One hand crept into her hair, stroking the soft tresses. Firm breasts pressed against his chest. His other hand slid down the silk dress to cup her bottom.
Sophie didn't struggle. She was almost boneless, pliable against him. Her hands gripped his coat as though she couldn't turn loose. The hot, dampness of her mouth urged him to kiss her with hunger he hadn't realized he'd possessed.



Eventually you'll have the opportunity to read the rest. But for now you'll have to be satisfied with something else. To kick off summer here at Have Novel, Will Edit, I'm giving away a pair of earrings. Sorry dudes, unless you're into dangley angels. Your prerogative entirely. You could always give them to your S.O. or sister. They're super cute, handmade, little angels with white glass bead skirts. I have a pair of green ones that I wear. Very awesome. Honestly, I bought the set specifically for the white ones, but I got the green ones as a bonus gift and I loved them right off the bat. I swear I've never worn the white ones. I was just waiting for a blog hop to give them away. If you want, I bet I can nip the ends off a toothpick and super glue horns on one of them. That would be a conversation starter, huh?


For a chance to win, leave me a comment and preferably your e-mail address. Happy Summer, y'all.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Playing Catch Up

Thanks to everyone who threatened to beat people who are mean to me. You guys are the best. I would do the same for you. I'm very good at standing around looking threatening--for a 5'5" blonde. Just say the word, I'm there.

I went to the library on Saturday to try to catch up with NaNo. I was behind because I didn't write anything on Friday. I did, however, have the best piece of tiramisu I've ever had in my life. Want to drag me out of doldrums? Feed me cake with coffee liquor in it. I felt freakin' awesome after that. But then there was Saturday:

I couldn't concentrate at the library, not with my laptop doing updates and making YouTube skip, not with a couple of guys making noise by the magazine section and looking my way now and then. Like what, you never seen anyone sitting in a chair typing, dude? Okay, maybe typing isn't the key word here. It was more like muttering under my breath as OpenOffice repeatedly popped up the message OpenOffice Not Responding because I was also trying to uninstall Skype because Java or something kept popping up a message that Skype was failing to run. I had it turned off, how can something that's not even on fail to run? Computers, right?

I'm pretty sure this dude's coat is made out of a
mattress. Cheers to me because I haven't sunk so
low as to start making clothes out of old beds. Yet.
So needless to say, I wasn't accomplishing anything except fueling my frustration. Because I also couldn't find the template for the certificate paper I bought at Staples. Thank you, useless paper manufacturing website. You're on my shit list too.

My characters weren't playing and I was secretly wondering if I shouldn't just leave my computer in my car with the windows down for any merry thief to find (steal the car too, buddy. Keys are in it. It's a two-fer.)

My husband called and we went to see a movie. Rock of Ages. Hilarious in spite of all the singing. At least it had an awesome soundtrack.

Yesterday we went grocery shopping. It was insanely hot, which only makes me mad cranky, but I reined in my evil side thanks to a fairly decent breeze and thank you, God for giving us a basement where it's naturally cool. No, we still haven't turned the AC on in the house. Here it is end of June and we're using fans and open windows. We're greening up the . . . okay, we just don't want to pay insane electric bills. Husband and I holed up in the basement, computers on laps and I raced madly through four hours trying to play catch up for Camp NaNo. I was only down a little over 6,000 words.

Piece of cake, right? Well . . . once I got to blow something up. I'd been itching to blow something up and make someone bleed for a while. I was pretty close to gleeful after that even without coffee liquor. Dear God, please don't let someone find my blog by typing 'blow something up' into Google. If I think I'm bug-sh!t now, I'm sure my frame of mind will be beyond bonkers after the FBI gets through with me.

By 10:00 p.m. I was even a little over yesterday's count which put me at over half-finished for NaNo and over half finished for my own goal of 80k.

I don't feel like editing The Sky Pirate's Wife right now. I just want to get rough, rough, rough draft of The Turncoat's Temptress done.

Thank you, guy who invented NaNoWriMo. I already forgot your name. It was Chris something-or-other. You reminded me that I love to write and for that, you have my eternal thanks. I can't offer you any money, but really, that'd be kind of like me paying you for therapy or services rendered and that might sully what we have. Which is . . . okay, we don't have anything because chances are you've never heard of me and I can't remember your name and I'm waaaay too lazy to go look.

And thank you, Basil, for allowing me to write about blowing up your house and letting me stick you with shards of glass. That really made my evening. I didn't even mind stopping to do laundry because of that.

When in doubt, torture your characters. ;)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Scratch

I hate posting when I feel like 7 kinds of dog shit stomped on by an elephant, eaten by a tiger, crapped out again in a swamp where a giant mutant alligator swallowed me and then vomited me back up to feed its nest of tiny gatorlings only to have them reject me and the big gator to deposit my remains where they were sure to be consumed by foxfire, but I have a couple of things I need to say.

I wanted to release The Sky Pirate's Wife in June originally. I wanted to do it before my birthday. I was able to recognize and console myself that that was never going to happen. There were too many kinks that needed worked out and then I got involved in some other things (not gangs or drugs or alcohol) that required more time than I ever could have imagined.

And on top of that, I've been dealing with an issue about whether or not by self-publishing I've actually achieved something. I thought I had, but someone said something and now it's eating at me like a starving dog with a bone. I also feel like a schmuck for not defending myself. I let people walk all over me because it's easier than fighting. But I felt about two inches tall and honestly, I'm not feeling much taller now.

I thought that throwing myself into editing SPW would grab me up out of this dark hole I dug for myself. I thought that I'd be able to dedicate lots of time to it and I'd have another book under my belt, something worth being proud of, but I might as well be standing still because I'm not close enough. If I take what I have now and call it good then I'm lying to myself and to everyone else.

In horse racing (which I used to love to follow), pulling out of a race before it starts is called scratching. That's what I'm doing today after giving it a lot of thought and viewing all possible outcomes. No sense in running that horse into the ground. I don't like admitting it. I feel like a huge failure because I was excited about putting it out. Now I'm feeling not so excited to the point of I'm thinking about going to bed and maybe coming out next summer.

Did you say cheesecake? Still not coming out.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Author Interview - Bethanne Strasser


What's your book/current WIP about?
I first wrote For Love or Duty in 2010. My husband was about to join the military and I thought it would be fun to put a story together that showcased military life…or what I imagined military life could be like. I wanted my heroine to be strong, yet flawed. I’m afraid I pulled the oldest stereotype in the book. The military brat. Only mine is reformed. It’s about a woman who has promised never to get involved with an officer ever again. But not for the reason you might think! She grew up so full of herself and her father’s rank. After hitting the bottom of the barrel and coming face-to-face with herself, Valerie knows that going back to that life would not make her the person she wants to be. But, of course, Someone [up there] has other plans for her. Enter, Kevin Morgan, stage left—the Army Captain stationed at Fort Bragg. Well, you can imagine her personal battle when she finds herself drawn to him. Likewise, he has a few dilemmas of his own to overcome…

Will they get over it and make a happily-ever-after for themselves? I’d like to tell you to read it and find out…but it’s romance! You know they will! :D

Care to share your favorite line(s) from your story?
Oh boy, a favorite line. How about a favorite set of lines? :D

“Hey, I’m no ordinary soldier.”
Of course not. He was probably braver, more courageous than any other soldier she’d met. He had access to top secret files that only the president’s right-hand man could access. He’d been on too many covert operations to count, too. “Oh, darn. See? That always happens to me. I want a nice, ordinary soldier, but apparently they’re all taken.”

What's your next project?
I have two things on my burners right now. I’ve had an editor show interest in a series of romantic suspense novellas. I also branched out this year and started a young adult novel [although I wouldn’t call it that! Younger!], a time travel, my first full length novel in about two years. I’m really excited about it. I would love to do an entire category of time travels, which would inspire a love of history in young people. The book I’ve started drops a couple of kids[teenagers] into the Battle of the Bulge during WW2.

Describe your writing in a sentence.
Easy-going and familiar, you’ll find yourself in my writing, if not in one book than in another.…you know I had to ask a friend this question. It never occurred to me I’d have to describe my writing. Haha. She says, “Strong, emotionally gripping stories that leave you wanting more.”

Do you choose character names or do the characters whisper them in your ears?
Names inspire me. I hear a name, and I want to write a story. For example, I watched the movie Serenity a few weeks ago. The tv crush I have on the main character, Malcolm Reynolds, made it easy to let my imagination run wild. In the movie, his crew flew to the planet Miranda. Well, as soon as I heard that name, I wanted to use it and Mal to create a story for the romantic suspense series I’m working on. And there you have it…

Plotter or panster?
More plotter than panster.

Do you like background noise or do you prefer a quiet space when you write?
I have the radio on behind me right now! I think it depends on my mood, though. Sometimes, quiet helps.

What are you currently reading?
Two things , Blackmailed by a Billionaire. A wonderful book written by a good friend of mine, Nina Croft. And the Ranger’s Apprentice: The Ruins of Gorlan. Really good middle-grade book!

What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview and how would you answer it?
This is one of my first interviews ever! I don’t think ahead that much… I wing things quite often. No expectations! That’s my motto.

People think I'm weird because...
People think I’m weird?!


Personal page: http://www.bethannestrasser.blogspot.com
http://www.twitter.com/Bethanne_writes
http://www.facebook.com/bstrasser35

Burb:
Growing up the proverbial military brat, Valerie Standish has shed her old ways. Yet, she’s been around long enough to recognize that familiar arrogance when Kevin Morgan walks through the door. This time she is drawn to the persistent captain like she hasn’t been to any man before, making it harder to keep her promise—never get involved with an officer.

Kevin doesn’t have a problem with her unwillingness to commit long term. He isn’t quite ready to settle either. For years, he’s worked hard to earn a promotion to Major. He wants one last fling before tying himself to a wife for the rest of his life.

But time proves them both liars as they begin to fall for each other. Neither are prepared for the ache of betrayal as they come face to face with the truth about one another. Will either of them be able to walk away unscathed or have the trenches of love already been dug?

Excerpt:

Chapter One

Tall, at least six feet. Light brown hair with streaks of blonde from the new Spring sunshine. Blue eyes. Familiar. The man stepped down from the over-sized pick-up truck. He’d been coming into the convenience store every week for about two months.

Valerie Standish—store clerk extraordinaire—admired the relaxed fit of his jeans, the tight T- shirt stretched over well-defined muscles; even the combination of work boots and ratty, old baseball cap added to the All-American package, part red-neck and definitely work driven.

But it was his eyes… their blue rivaled a Colorado sky. They didn’t warm, nor were they particularly friendly, but when he laughed, they transformed the hard planes of his square unsmiling jaw into a face meant to seduce. Not me, she thought when he came through the front door, took the side aisle back to the beer cave, and disappeared into the refrigerator.

She sighed, a familiar chord resonating through her gut like nerves on a first date. Down, girl. When a young woman with a cute, chubby little boy on her hip set a half-gallon of milk and small container of baby formula on the counter, Valerie straightened and pulled the lighter display away from the edge where the baby could reach it. End of the month. Those last days before the first, when state allowances had run out and needs still had to be met.

“I need a carton of Lights, too.” The woman’s voice broke as she hesitated over the request.

Valerie asked for I.D. with an inward grimace. But she’d done her share of smoking years ago and could hardly judge. “There you go. All together, that’s forty-eight dollars and ninety-seven cents.”

“I really need to quit.” She blushed.

Valerie gave her attention to the boy, tickling him under his chin before taking the money and making change for the fifty. “It took me twelve years to quit.”

“What is this, AA for smokers? It’s my turn. Get the hell out of the way,” a raspy, slurred voice growled.

Val looked up in annoyance. Rough customers in the store were not unusual. She had no patience for them.
The poor mother, on the other hand, jumped as if she’d been hit and took a step out of the man’s way.

“You’ll wait your turn, sir, and do so without name calling.” Not recognizing him as a regular, Valerie forced a smile.

With a tighter grip on the boy, the customer gathered her belongings.

This man was big, even bigger than Blue Eyes. But where Blue Eyes was hard, this jerk had a lousy beer belly around his middle. His face sagged, as if he’d spent too much time at the corner bar. Mean, that was her first impression of him.

“You have a good weekend, hon.” Valerie offered the farewell, not wanting to rush now that she knew The Jerk didn’t like waiting. Working here did not mean she had to tolerate meatheads.

The boy cooed to Valerie and she smiled back.

As they left, Valerie eyed The Jerk. He stank of desperation. His eyes touched her, making a slow wander down her figure, but they were lifeless and dull.

“Now, this is more like it. Open the drawer real slow and keep your hands where I can see them.”

The pulse in her throat bumped against her skin. Her nerves clamored against her stomach walls. Okay. Mean might have been too mild. She froze when the guy laid a small gun on the counter in front of her and covered it loosely with his big, grubby hand. Her gaze flew to his, her mind to the man in the beer cave. Was he still there? Had he left when she wasn’t looking?

“That’s right. No one’s here to save your sweet rear.”

She opened her mouth, a curse on her tongue.

His hand came out of nowhere and slammed against her jaw, knocking her into the cigarette shelves. Her head rang, but she kept her feet under her. The store was quiet. No one remained to help her. Righting herself, she took a deliberate step up to the counter, and her foot connected to the button flush against the floor. A signal to the world outside. Her only hope. With shaking hands, she punched in a total for the cash register.

Her ear ached something fierce and her jaw throbbed, but Valerie wasn’t about to die for the job. She pulled the measly bit of cash from the drawer. “Here. Take it and go, okay?”

The Jerk grinned and ran the edge of the gun down the side of her breast. “Keep being good and maybe Randy will give you a prize.”

She backed up and a sound of repulsion escaped. The man’s face grew red, and his thumb released the safety.

“You don’t want to do this,” she whispered.

“Hey Randy. Long time no see.”

Valerie almost peed her pants when Randy turned to look at the newcomer, and the gun in front of her wavered.

The beer guy hadn’t left.

A mixture of relief and panic swelled against her breastbone. Please don’t do anything stupid. Blue Eyes dropped a six-pack on the counter hard enough to make the bottles rattle.

“If you’ll wait a minute while I’m taking care of this gentleman,” she forced from trembling lips, “it’ll only be a minute.”

Blue Eyes’ smile was easy going, as if he didn’t notice the gun or the man with the handful of cash next to him. “Sure, no problem. Randy and I go way back. How’s your sister doin’ anyway, Randy? What’s she got now, four kids?”

Bushy brows furrowed deeply in the crags of Randy’s pudgy forehead. “My sister doesn’t—”

Blue Eyes sent a solid left elbow into the thief’s temple, stunning him. Then faster than Val could register, Randy was on the floor. His hands were tied behind his back with a frayed rope, like the one that had been holding the cardboard candy display against the wall at the back of the store. Her rescuer kicked the gun and it slid down aisle three.

“Oh, my God. Is he dead?” Horrified, the words echoed through her brain.

“Would I tie him up if he was?” Blue Eyes pursed his lips as he pulled his cell phone from his pocket. But the sound of sirens could be heard coming up the street. He snapped the phone closed and set it down. “I disarmed him and stopped him from robbing you blind before having his way with you and possibly killing you.”

Her mouth gaped as shock continued to stall her brain.

A soft moan rose from Randy’s prostrate form.

“You could at least say thank you, you know.”

That pulled her from the afflicting fog, and she sputtered. “Well, of all the—”

“S-L-P-D. Freeze!”

Valerie shrieked, making the man before her smile as he raised his hands and turned to the police officer. The smile boiled her already agitated blood. The nerve. Not that she wasn’t thankful. She was. More than… And God! Blue Eyes, of all people. Classic damsel in distress meets knight in shining armor. Still, she would have said thank you without his prodding. Now it hardly seemed worth it.

Pompous. He probably set this kind of scenario up with his buddy all the time, so he could play hero.

“Put your hands on the counter real slow, mister.” The police officer thought Blue Eyes was one of the bad guys. Surprisingly, Blue Eyes did as he was told without a word of objection. The officer patted him down. “This your partner on the floor?”

“No, sir.”

Valerie opened her mouth to speak, even as his arrogant, challenging eyes met her brown ones over the six pack. The man actually shook his head, as if he was disappointed in her. Pursing her lips, she sighed. “They didn’t come together, officer. This man was shopping in the beer cave when Randy arrived to rob me.”

The officer pulled a wallet from Blue Eye’s jacket pocket and flipped to the inside. “Captain Kevin Morgan. You from Fort Bragg?”

“Yes, sir.”

No wonder. A soldier. She should have known. Growing up near the military base, soldiers were a dime a dozen. And they didn’t typically resemble the men in the books she read, either—charming, honest, …humble.

“Ma’am, if you wouldn’t mind, Officer Blakely’s going to come in and ask you some questions about what happened tonight.”

Valerie nodded to the policeman, the temptation to tap her fingernails overwhelming. Her night had just gotten longer. “I should call my boss.”

“Don’t worry. There’ll be time for that, too.” The officer in charge waved a hand at Kevin. “Follow me, young man. I’ll get your story, too.”

For some reason, Valerie watched her fantasy man walk away disappointed he hadn’t even said good-bye.
Stupid.


Buy Links
Smashwords - https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/168730
Amazon - http://www.amazon.com/For-Love-or-Duty-ebook/dp/B0089QAFIE/ref=sr_1_1?s= digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1339144492&sr=1-1
Barnes & Noble - http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/for-love-or-duty-bethanne-strasser/1111454948


Monday, June 11, 2012

A NaNo Week in Review

Let's look at the number tally for the weekend:
Total: 32,000
NaNo Written: 16, 735
Total percentage: 40%

I spent about four hours catching up yesterday because I didn't write much Saturday. I was down over 3,000 words. Today the goal is 18 something and tomorrow it's 20k. It seems unbelievable. I always get bogged down in the 20's so this should prove to be an interesting week.

In other news, Mom bought a box of The Treasure Hunter's Lady. They arrived just in time for the Turner Family Reunion. We sold out (okay, there were only 7, but still) and that felt pretty good. It was just kind of awesome to see a box with my books in it. Somehow touching brand new copies never gets old. I didn't sniff them or anything to see if they smelled good, but I bet they did. You know, like money scented. Tee hee.


Friday, June 8, 2012

Ending The First Week of Camp NaNo

I wrote that poem all by myself. Does that count toward my word goal?
What a week. Mostly I feel drained. Not from writing, at least, I don't think that's why. In fact, my word count is over 27,000 with the 12,000 I've added from Camp Nano. The Turncoat's Temptress is coming along better than I could have hope.

Well, the word count is at least. I'm having serious doubts about these characters and where they might be taking the plot. Just write, Allison. We can fix the major problems later. Much, much later. I don't want to fail at camp.

Still editing The Sky Pirate's Wife. It's a month and 8 days until the release. I'll be editing up until a few days before it's time to upload that puppy. So the word that I'm still editing shouldn't come as a shock to anyone. Come the month mark, I'll start advertising it more, so you'll be wanting to look for it. Until your eyeballs bleed from all the stuff I'm going to tell you about it. Okay? Good, glad we got that cleared up.

There's a slight pinch in the tendons on the underside of my wrist, which tells me I'm not getting enough Nano-ing done (actually I think that's oh-god-make-it-stop-tendons-will-explode-soon, but it's subjective to interpretation).

Have a great weekend! 
Go, be, write, kids.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Author Interview - Aubrie Dionne


Morning everyone! Help me welcome Aubrie Dionne as our guest today!


What's your book/current WIP about?

After a whole year and a half of writing sci fi, I’m finally returning to my fantasy roots! Yay! I’d forgotten how long it takes to write epic fantasy prose. Every sentence must flow like a lyric poem. But, it’s so much fun to talk about dragons and minstrels and leave the lasers and space ships behind
for at least a little while.

Care to share your favorite line(s) from your story?

Probably the tag line for the whole series: The hunt for paradise was only the beginning.

What's your next project?

I’m writing about a princess, her bodyguard, and a minstrel from a neighboring kingdom seeking her hand. This is a story about the power of music verses the power of steel. I’m having a grand time writing it.

Describe your writing in a sentence.

Lyrical, fantastical, and driven.

Do you choose character names or do the characters whisper them in your ears?

I make them up when I’m bored, trying to give them the most unique names anyone has ever heard!
One of my characters is named Shizznizz.

Plotter or panster?
A little of both. Although, now that I have deadlines- more of a plotter by necessity!

Do you like background noise or do you prefer a quiet space when you write?
I love listening to new age music. My favorite radio internet station is Radio Gaia. Anything calming with no words helps me write.

What are you currently reading?
I just finished the Hunger Games trilogy, and now I’m reading a few books by my new publisher, Inkspell publishing. You can get on their ARC list by going to their website and clicking on the box in the bottom right corner: Inkspellpublishing.com

What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview and how would you answer it?

What would you play if you could meet Mozart and play your flute for him? Well, I’d play his D major flute concerto because it’s my favorite. I’d love to see what he thought of my interpretation!

People think I'm weird because...
I watch the Syfy channel all the time.
And I keep little figures on my desk: Jack Sparrow, two little fuzzy Easter chicks, a fairy godmother, and a Christmas angel.
And
I get history mixed up - like the world wars and all the leaders-and I have no idea who all the US senators are- but I can tell you every single line from Star Wars IV-VI.

I guess my head is full of fluff.


Blurb:
After watching his love leave on a colony ship, James Wilfred must save those left behind from a planetary apocalypse. Their salvation lies in an unfinished ship tucked away in a secret government base, and only James can break in and pilot him and his people to freedom on a nearby space station.

Skye O’Connor’s boyfriend never returns after his gang attempts an assassination of the Governor, and the State Building is destroyed. Worse, crazed moonshiners addicted to the chemical Morpheus have stormed the city, and she must find a safe place for her and her boyfriend’s daughter. When a heroic man saves her, Skye asks to accompany him on his quest to find the last colony ship left on Earth.

As the city falls around them, James and Skye must work together to build a new future, all the while rediscovering their ability to love, before the apocalypse claims them both.

Excerpt

Clutching his retractable cable, James lowered himself down the glassy surface of the high-rise as the wind stole the warmth of the sheets he’d just left behind. He glanced at the fluttering curtain three stories above his, wondering how Mestasis would feel when she awoke to an empty bed. He detached his grappling hook and slipped inside the balcony of the building, fast as a diving raven’s shadow.

If only I could stay longer. If only things could be different. 

His wristband flashed another message. If you don’t get down here within the hour, I’m coming to look for you.

The thought of Dal stumbling through the abandoned subway by himself sent adrenaline rushing through James’s veins. The lower levels had been dangerous since Dal was a boy, but with the introduction of Morpheus, the desperate scavengers had grown into vicious savages.

James typed a message back, hoping Dal would believe him. I’ll be there. Stay where you are.


Mestasis will have to understand.

He took an elevator down as far as it worked, holding onto the slim hope he’d have a chance to give Mestasis a decent good-bye later. The elevator creaked to a halt and the doors parted to a corridor lit by one flickering bulb. Crumpled rags and broken vials dusted with the dried, silvery sheen of Morpheus lined the floor.

The lower levels.

No one decent ventured down this far, so the government didn’t find it necessary to cover low level repairs. It would only bring up gangmen, like himself, to the upper levels. But some of us are good. It’s those Razornecks that give gangs a bad name. 

He jogged to the end and slid down a plastic recycling chute to Level Five. The chute ended with a rusted metal grating piled high with cracked bottles and compacted cans. He kicked out the grating and emerged on a stairwell landing. Cracked bottles rattled around him as he shuffled through the debris to Level One, the place where only the bravest, or craziest, treaded alone.

The scent of dank air and old garbage wafted up from the moldy floor. It smelled like home. He’d been away too long. James ducked through a shattered window to an alley between the buildings.

Twilight spread through the sky, stretching the shadows of lumbering heaps of old mattresses, broken ionizers, and tattered plastic bags. Using the darkness as his cloak, he climbed through the debris and checked over his shoulder. The alley lay as silent as a wasteland. Residents had boarded most of the windows to keep out thieves, but apartments lay empty and dark as deep space.

Three windows down, a small child with wispy black hair peered out, clicking off a flickering light stick. The child disappeared as he approached. James reached in his pocket and left an orange on the sill before ducking away.

A stone stairway loomed at the end of the alley like a mouth to the underworld. James slipped down a corroded railing to an old subterranean transportation system once used by his ancestors in the days before the mega-high-rises and the elite’s reign of the upper levels.

Pitch-black oozed from under the brick, and his hair glowed neon green as the darkness enveloped him. The radiance was just enough to light his path, the permanent dye a trademark of his gang. James picked up his pace and jogged along the tracks, approaching a thick cement door with graffiti scribbled in hasty strokes.

He raised his hand to knock, but he paused with his fist in midair. Shuffling echoed down the track to his right. No one could see him entering the Radioactive Hand of Justice’s underground facility—he had to find out who had found him and make sure he or she wouldn’t talk.

James slipped past the door and tiptoed closer, his hair casting light a few feet around him in every direction. No one could sneak up on him.

Was it Dal?

“Hello?” His voice echoed down the shaft.

Author Bio:

Aubrie Dionne is an author and flutist in New England. Her writings have appeared in Mindflights, Niteblade, Silver Blade, Emerald Tales, Hazard Cat, Moon Drenched Fables, A Fly in Amber, and Aurora Wolf. Her books are published by Entangled Publishing, Lyrical Press, and Gypsy Shadow Publishing. She recently signed her YA sci fi novel with Inkspell Publishing titled: Colonization: Paradise 21, which will release in October 2012. When she's not writing, Aubrie teaches flute and plays in orchestras. She's a big Star Trek TNG fan, as well as Star Wars and Serenity. Her dogs are appropriately named Jedi and Princess Leia.

Website: http://www.authoraubrie.com
Blog: http://authoraubrie.blogspot.com
Twitter: @authoraubrie
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2964057.Aubrie_Dionne

Follow this link to find Aubrie's other interviews, reviews and giveaways! http://cblspromotions.blogspot.com/2012/05/scheduled-vbt-hero-rising-prequel-to.html

Friday, June 1, 2012

It Is The First Day of June

and so, today, someone will die.

No, I'm joking. Sorry, that was the opening line in The Scorpio Races, only it was November.

But today is the opening day of Camp NaNoWriMo. It's 11:01 am CST as I'm writing this and I have approximately 100 words written. I. Am. Stuck.

I'm that kid the other campers left hanging by her undies on a post down by the boat dock. Enter ye olde massive wedgie. Big ol' writing wedgie. Lovely.

I need to get to the next scene from where I am, but I'm having difficulties getting into the characters' heads. They aren't playing nice.

Yeah, I felt like I didn't have enough stress, so here am, pretending to NaNo. Or rather, writing a blog post bitching about pretending to NaNo because I can't think of any way to move the scene forward. Yup. It's NaNo time.

See you 'round the campfire (where we will be using the previously written 17,000 words to fuel our hot dog and s'mores broiling flames).