Sunday, June 23, 2013

Welcome to Summer!

I hope everyone has a wonderful summer planned! I just hope we aren't looking at TOO many 100+ days here in North Texas. It can get hot, hot, hot down here!

The rewrites on After - Part Two are coming along nicely. I'm focusing on getting the Amarillo chapters done by this week so my hereos can move on to Boulder City. Amarillo was a last minute idea, and I HATE last minute ideas. This is where plot holes and continuity errors live. I really have to let an idea float around in my head for a while, give me time to really get it formulated and solid before it goes down on paper. I started Amarillo on faith that something would come to me over time and eventually it did, but it took too long! I was starting to get worried.

During that time while I was waiting on Amarillo, I jotted down a short story which I'm now working on the finishing touches to get it into a paranormal/horror anthology. This is exciting! I'll keep everyone updated on that as well as this new project progresses.

On the reading front, I have a sad story. I picked up the next book on my to read list, read the 100 pages that I normally do and was irritated the entire time. I just couldn't finish it. I hardly ever abandon a book but I was having a terrible time getting into this one. The book had some pretty decent reviews, but I guess it just wasn't for me. There are WAY too many books out there for me to read, I just don't have the time to dedicate to something I'm struggling with.

I joined a book club, so I'll be reading Ready Player One next week. This one looks pretty good!

Vacation starts next Friday, so I can't wait! I'll try to get a quick update in before we head off to the beach.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Forever Road, By Catie Rhodes

First off, happy fathers day to all those wonderful dads out there! We just got back from an excellent lunch and I am STUFFED!

Now, before I start the review, I want to say just how much I love reading indie books. They follow a different format, a different set of rules (or no rules at all!) than what we've come to expect from a traditional publisher. Sometimes, it's a very refreshing change of pace.

Most of the indie books I have picked up lately have been backed by a handful of very good reviews. Now here is my request on behalf of all the indie authors out there. If you read a book that you like/love, PLEASE post a review. You have no idea how much this means to them/us.

Generally when I read a book, if the story hasn't gripped me by about 100 pages in, I start to lose interest. I find it a chore to finish, if I finish at all.

Forever Road,
by Catie Rhodes
I was thrilled to find that was far from the case with Forever Road. This book pretty much had its claws in me right off the bat. The story is told from the first person perspective of Peri Jean Mace, a tom-boy who has had a rough life and just so happens to be able to see ghosts. She is an excellent character that I genuinely like and believe in.

I do love supernatural/paranormal stories, which is what caught my eye about the book. The interesting thing, though, was that it didn't revolve around the spiritual world 100%. The mystery in the book was so well played out, there were times I would totally forget I was reading a paranormal book. I was just so enthralled by what was going to happen next and the who-dun-it aspect that I forgot about the ghosts!

Along with Peri, there is a great background cast to flesh out the world. The book is full of very lively and believable characters. It's action packed and heartfelt. By the end, I had laughed and cried, and now I can't wait for the next installment.

Catie has a very unique writing style, and I got a kick out of her expressions several times throughout the book. If you like ghosts stories or a good mystery, I 100% recommend this book. I save my 5 star reviews for the books I really love, and this one gets a full 5 stars!

Catie Rhodes has her own blog and webpage. You can find here here.

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Also, if you have been waiting for After - Part 1 to become a free download on Amazon, I am happy to report that you can grab it anytime now! I fully intend to always offer the first installment of The Phoenix Curse for free, and I'm pacing the releases so that I can keep ahead on the writing front as much as possible. 

So far, so good! Enjoy what's left of the weekend!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Spectacular Week!

Happy weekend everyone!

I just wanted to drop a short note to let all my fans know how phenomenal this week has been. The response I've gotten from the release of After - Part 1 has far exceeded any of my expectations and I am truly overwhelmed.

A big THANK YOU to everyone already out there, and a warm welcome to all the new visitors. You are all amazing. I just don't have enough words to express how thankful I am right now for all of you.

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

Monday, June 10, 2013


So things have been quite hectic lately with the start of summer break. I am counting down the days until vacation!

Here's a quick update.

I've started reading Forever Road by Catie Rhodes, and I'm really enjoying it so far. I'm parceling it out a chapter at a time, so the reading is slow for right now, but expect a review here in a little bit. I'm also working on the rewrites for Part 2 of After and am so far pretty happy with the progress.

NaNoWriMo is organizing writing camps for July. There is still a word count goal, but unlike the 50k words in November, you can set this one to whatever you feel is attainable. I'm thinking about signing up and adding 25k words to Dreamland. It's not a bad goal considering the other projects I'm working on.

If any of you out there reading this has ever dreamed of writing, I urge you to give this a shot! Don't worry, no one will have access to your story, so no one will be able to read it. It's yours and yours alone, and you can write about what ever you want! They have a fantastic support network that has answers to any question you might have.

Stop by and have a look if it's something you think you might be interested in. Camp NaNoWriMo.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Choices - A Time Travel Novella, By Cate Dean

After the rush of excitement of finally publishing my first book, I decided to sit down and curl up with a story I could get absorbed in. I picked up Choices - a Time Travel Novella, by Cate Dean.

I love the cover art.
I first discovered Cate Dean while reading Tales From The Mist. The Messenger was one of her short stories published within the anthology, and it was a gripping tale that stuck with me. Although I enjoyed Choices, I think I still like The Messenger better.

That being said, Choices was exactly what I wanted to read. I've never much cared for stories with time travel, but this one didn't dwell on the intricacies that generally revolve around the subject, so likewise wasn't bogged down by loop holes that come with it. Instead, we jumped right into the action, following our damaged heroine, Maura, as her journey was forced upon her.

I know some reviewers have said that they wished to have more detail in this story, and wished it was longer, but I think it worked okay as is. It's true, there isn't a lot of detail or back-story when you get started, but by the end, Cate has sprinkled all the answers through-out the book by our insight into Maura's thoughts, and nearly everything we original questioned has been answered.

There is A LOT of action packed into this little book, and sometimes I found myself wincing at Maura's pain and rubbing my own leg. It was a very fast ride, and a worthwhile read if this is the type of book you go for. As I said before, this generally isn't the genre I'm inclined to read, and it will not linger with me as The Messenger did, but I still enjoyed it.

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Now, on to The Phoenix Curse news. I guess I'm a glutton for punishment, but the second I got everything wrapped up with the publication, I was ready to jump right into Part Two. Crazy! I had to force myself to get some other things done!

I've finally found the need to add 'tabs' to my blog. If you'll notice the 'Books' tab has a link to all the places that you can find Part One, and I have declared that Part Two will be available in the fall. Also, I have been working on the cover art for Part Two. This is exactly what I envisioned in my mind, and I'm pretty much blown away that I was able to actually get that out of my brain and into I'm still working on the brightness levels so you can tell what you're looking at in the thumbnail, but I really dig what it looks like when the picture is blown up! I'll probably still work on it a bit more before I'm ready to publish, but here is the preliminary artwork.

Now that I'll soon by diving into the Part Two edits, I ALSO have all of Part One of Dreamland fully
outlined, and am once again pleased with the story progression.

For those of you that have been following along, and read my acknowledgements in Part One, then you all already know how big a part my husband has played in this. Even though he is my beta-reader and editor, he still refuses to let me spoil him! So he's reading the story for the first time as he edits, and he's urging me to get my rewrites done so he knows what happens! This is great incentive for me to keep trudging on.

For all my fans out there, thank you so much for the wonderful, encouraging comments. Those, too, mean so much to me! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!