Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Join the celebration

Hey guys! Embrace will be a year old this December. It’s hard to believe that almost an entire year has passed. To celebrate the book birthday of my debut novel I’m throwing a Birthday Bash and I’m hoping you’ll join me in spreading the word. Participation is easy. Just fill out the form below. During the week of December 10th I’ll send you an email with the Birthday Bash post in a format that can easily be cut and pasted into your blog. Post any day between December 17th and December 21st. It’s that easy.

To thank you for your time and for helping me spread the word about this celebration, I’ll be drawing a  name from everyone who posts and the lucky winner will received an eBook of Embrace plus a $15 Amazon gift card. Your readers will also have a chance to win fun prizes by filling out the Rafflecopter form that will be included in the post I send you in December. (Be sure to fill it out yourself for a second chance to win.)

I hope you’ll join me in the celebration.


Want to help spread the word about the party? Just click one of the Share to  buttons below. Thanks!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop

Welcome to the Spooktacular Giveaway Hop hosted by I Am A Reader Not A Writer and The Diary of a Bookworm. There are over 400 blog participating! For my stop I'm giving away an autographed copy of EMBRACE, plus an Embrace hemp bracelet and bookmark. There are five ways to enter and win.

                                                                                                         Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
(Contest open to US residents)

Be sure to visit the other stops for
 more chances to win fabulous prizes.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Feature & Interview: Wendy Higgins author of Sweet Evil

With me today is Wendy Higgins, author of Sweet Evil. I met Wendy at the SCBWI Summer Conference. We were both there for the PAL book signing. It was crowded, and I hadn't even realized that Wendy was sitting not far from me until things quieted down some, which was so cool because I had been wanting to read Sweet Evil and with her being there I was able to get my copy signed.

Sweet Evil has so many swoon worthy scenes, I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good paranormal romance.

Sweet Evil
by Wendy Higgins

Embrace the Forbidden

What if there were teens whose lives literally depended on being bad influences?

This is the reality for sons and daughters of fallen angels.

Tenderhearted Southern girl Anna Whitt was born with the sixth sense to see and feel emotions of other people. She's aware of a struggle within herself, an inexplicable pull toward danger, but Anna, the ultimate good girl, has always had the advantage of her angel side to balance the darkness within. It isn't until she turns sixteen and meets the alluring Kaidan Rowe that she discovers her terrifying heritage and her willpower is put to the test. He's the boy your daddy warned you about. If only someone had warned Anna.

Forced to face her destiny, will Anna embrace her halo or her horns?

Cherie: Where did the spark for Sweet Evil come from?

Wendy: I think it was a culmination of everything in my life up to that point: books I’d read, relationships, family, my spirituality, just everything!  The imagination is a funny thing.

Cherie: When did you first realize you wanted to write for children?

Wendy: I always liked writing. But it wasn’t until after I taught high school that I knew I wanted to write stories geared for that age group (and older).

Cherie: What do you like most about writing for this age group?

Wendy: I love that transition time into adulthood, when every decision matters more than ever, and with growing independence comes new experiences and realizations. It’s such an important time in a young person’s life.

Cherie: Can you tell us something about Kaidan we didn’t learn in Sweet Evil?

Wendy: Hm. Well, he has big feet, teeheehee. Seriously, though. Kaidan is really hungry for genuine affection.

Cherie: Congratulations on the sale of the sequel! Can you tell us what’s next for Anna and Kaidan?

Wendy: Thank you!  In the sequel, Sweet Peril, we really get to see Anna grow up, but there is a lot of pain between she and Kaidan - a lot needs to be worked out, but the dangers are higher than ever. It’s definitely going to be an adventure.

Now it’s time for some fun, random questions.

Favorite genre?
Anything with strong romance and romantic tension.

Spring or Autumn? 
Autumn!  We even named our daughter Autumn. :)

Favorite food? New York style cheese pizza

Where would your dream vacation be? (The sky’s the limit.) \Ireland, or anywhere in the UK, but I feel especially drawn to the Emerald Isle.

Are there any types of books you don’t read?
I’m not a fan of horror/gore  :-/

About the author:

After earning a bachelors in Creative Writing from George Mason University and a masters in Curriculum and Instruction from Radford, Wendy taught high school English until becoming a mommy. Writing Young Adult (YA) stories gives her the opportunity to delve into the ambiguities of those pivotal, daunting, and exciting years before adulthood.

She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband, daughter, and son. Sweet Evil is her debut novel.

Purchase Sweet Evil today

Find Wendy Higgins

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Feature & Interview: James Matlack Raney

Today I have with me James Matlack Raney and we're discussing his debut novel, Jim Morgan and the King of Thieves. I had the pleasure of meeting James at a conference this summer and I'm very excited that he agreed to stop by my blog.

First, a little about his book...

Jim Morgan and the King of Thieves
by James Matlack Raney

Young Jim Morgan loves everything about his life: ignoring his old tutor’s lessons, flaunting his new clothes, terrorizing his servants, and perfecting the fine art of snobbery. But the night his father returns from a mysterious sea voyage with the secret to a vast pirate treasure, Jim's world is thrown upside down.

Now Jim must escape the clutches of his father’s wicked enemies, decipher the magic of a gypsy witch, hide from a shadowy pirate and his talking raven, and outwit the King of Thieves and his army of pickpockets.

If he is to survive, Jim must learn to trust new allies and discover the power and magic of true friendship. And through it all he may, just possibly, uncover a hero hidden within him, and live an adventure beyond his wildest dreams.

And without further ado, please welcome James Matlack Raney.

Cherie: Where did the spark for Jim Morgan and the King of Thieves come from?

James: That’s a good question, mostly because I’m not entirely sure when the entire idea actually coalesced into one story in my mind.  But I know it began with the desire to tell the story of a boy who loses his father and goes on a great journey to become something he thinks would make his father proud.  That’s an important theme to me personally and I just felt the need to talk about it through an adventure story.  Everything else, like the pirates and thieves and treasure, all fell into place after that.

Cherie: I think it’s a wonderful theme! When did you first realize you wanted to write for children?

James: You know, I never consciously decided that this book was going to be for kids.  When I was growing up, I wasn’t aware of this hard line between Young Adult, Middle Grade, etc.  To me, there were the little kids books (which I didn’t like so much) and then there were just books, and I loved reading books.  That idea has really carried over for me into my writing.  Yes, the hero, Jim Morgan, is 11 years old, but I didn’t want to write just for 11 year-olds.  I wanted to write a good book that someone of any age could enjoy.  Hopefully I accomplished that.

Cherie: I think all ages love a good adventure. I know I do. J What do you like most about writing for this age group?

James: Your imagination is so fertile at that age!  It’s amazing!  When I was younger, reading books would really whisk me off to other worlds where anything was possible, and I would love to give that same sensation to young readers from this generation.

Cherie: I love your cover! How much input did you have in its design?
James: I had some input, but I really have to hand it to Lora Lee.  She is an amazing artist!  Something that really helped was that Lora read the book before designing the cover.  So much of what came out was her interpretation of the story.  She blew me away!  Check out her other work at loraart.com. 

Cherie: I definitely will. What is your writing process like?

James: I try to keep it as organic as possible.  I do outline, mostly to get the skeleton of the plot and the pacing right, but I purposefully try not to overdo that.  I really like to discover and explore the world and events there as they are happening.  Sometimes this method slows me down a bit, but it also has resulted in some really great twists and surprises.

Cherie: Do you see this as a series, and if so, what’s next for Jim Morgan?

James: Yes!  I’m actually working on the sequel now.  Things are going to get tough for Jim and his friends as the story progresses.  The humor will still be there, but Jim is going to be tested by darker forces than he faced in the first novel.  It’s going to be very exciting!

And now for some random, fun questions…

Favorite color?
Blue.  Been my favorite since I was a boy!

Snickers or Almond Joy? 
Going to have to go with Snickers on this one – those are good!

Are you a morning person or an evening person? 
I love the morning, especially for writing!  It’s a quiet time of day when my mind and my imagination are less cluttered and more energized.  I get much of my best work done before noon.

Do you have any guilty pleasures that get you through the writing/revising process?
I love to reward myself with a movie at a movie theater after finishing a long section or difficult portion of a novel.  And I go all out: popcorn, soda – the works!

Favorite place to write? 
I like writing in coffee shops.  For some reason I enjoy having other people around while I’m writing.  Perhaps it’s all in my mind, but sometimes I feel like I capture a bit of the energy from the activity and conversations around me.  Plus, going somewhere besides home makes it feel a little bit more like going to work or to the gym – I’m headed to this place with a purpose and I need to get that purpose done!

Thanks, James, for being with us today and congratulations on the release of your novel!

For more information on Jim Morgan and the King of Thieves:

About the author:
James Matlack Raney grew up all over the world, in Europe, Latin America, and Africa, before winding up in the mysterious land of horses and bluegrass – Kentucky. Now he calls Southern California home, writing adventures and occasionally living a few of his own.

Besides writing adventures about magical treasures, scheming thieves, and daring pirates, he also enjoys playing guitar, reading a great book by the pool or at the beach, and seeing his far-away friends and family whenever he has the chance.

Find James Matlack Raney

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

IWSG, October

Hosted by Alex J Cavanaugh

First, before I get to the purpose of this post, I'd like to 
congratulate the winner of my Blogfest 2012 giveaway 
Amy K
Thanks to all who participated!

And now back to your regular, first Wednesday of the month post: IWSG...

Anyone else ever feel like you’re always waiting on something? Maybe it’s for inspiration to strike or for that spark that tells you exactly what should happen next in your story. Maybe it’s some quiet time to write uninterrupted. Then there’s the time we wait to hear back from critique partners or beta readers. And how about the time we wait to send queries because we are still working on the all important query blurb and synopsis to make it a tight, interesting summary of our work, one that won’t leave an agent or editor thinking WTF.

Whew! Typing it out makes me realize how much writers are in wait mode. And I haven’t even gotten to waiting for responses. That’s where I am at right now. My middle grade ghost story is out on submission, so my agent and I are waiting to hear back from editors. I didn’t want her to get too bored (ya, I’m chuckling, because I know she has plenty to do), but just in case she finds herself needing something new to read,  I sent her my newest young adult novel. So I’m waiting to hear her comments on that one.

Being in wait mode gives a writer way too much time to question his or her work. Did I show instead of tell everywhere I could? Is my voice active? Did I stay in the right POV? Will an editor love the characters and plot? (And in the case of my YA novel, will my agent love it?)

I hope so. Don’t we all?

So while I wait, and to keep me from asking these same questions over and over again, I’m focusing on autumn finally being here. I love this time of year. The smoky scent from the neighbors’ fire pits drift through our yard and many of the trees are brilliant shades of red and yellow. Fall decorations are starting to be put out. Pumpkin spice lattes are back at Starbucks and this is the season with all the best comfort foods. I guess if I have to be waiting, this is the right time of year to do it. 

Happy Autumn and Happy Writing!! 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Cover Reveal: Persistence of Vision by Liesel K. Hill

It's here, the cover for Liesel K. Hill's new adult, futuristic dystopian fantasy, Persistence of Vision.

Persistence of Vision (Interchron #1)
by Liesel K. Hill
Release date: Winter 2012

In a world where collective hives are enslaving the population and individuals have been hunted to the verge of extinction, Maggie Harper, and independent 21st Century woman, must find the strength to preserve the freedom of the future, but without the aid of her memories.

After experiencing a traumatic time loss, Maggie is plagued by a barrage of images she can't explain. When she's attacked by a creep with a spider's web tattoo, she is saved by Marcus, a man she's never met, but somehow remembers. He tells her that both he and her creepy attacker are from a future in which individuals are being murdered by collectives, and Marcus is part of the rebellion. The collectives have acquired time travel and they plan to enslave the human race throughout all of history. The flashes Maggie has been seeing are echoes of lost memories, and the information buried deep within them is instrumental in defeating the collective hives.

In order to preserve the individuality of mankind, Maggie must try to re-discover stolen memories, re-kindle friendships she has no recollection of, and wade through her feelings for the mysterious Marcus, all while dodging the tattooed assassins the collectives keep sending her way.

If Maggie can't fill the holes in her memory and find the answers to stop the collectives, the world both in her time and in all ages past and future will be doomed to enslavement in the grey, mediocre collectives. As the danger swirls around her and the collectives close in, Maggie realizes she must make a choice: stand out or fade away...

Find Liesel K. Hill