Monday, June 23, 2014

POLAR OPPOSITES BOOK BLAST

Polar OppositesPolar Opposites: Super Villain Academy #2


The supers are balanced. Academies have altered their curriculum to teach both sides of the super power spectrum. All’s well in the super world. Right?


When Mystic kidnaps Oceanus, Jeff learns it isn’t all right. Turning to the newly balanced supers for assistance, he panics to find they’ve done nothing to rescue Oceanus. When no ransom request follows, he worries Mystic’s plan never included returning his girlfriend. Frustrated, he’s forced to work with the only super willing to help. Oceanus’ ex-villain, ex-boyfriend, Set.


Mystic isn’t the only one hiding something. Nothing about Jeff is balanced. Temper flares result in scorched clothing or flying furniture, and his charm has become an indiscriminating people-magnet.


Jeff is convinced, or maybe just hopeful, that his lack of control is directly related to Oceanus being gone. But will he and Set find her before Jeff loses control completely and will they find her alive?

Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Excerpt


They never talked about how they ended the world. Twice. Jeff glanced at Oceanus, bent over her phone in the passenger seat of his car. A curtain of black hair shielded her profile from view, but he thought he saw her smile.


He reached over and tucked her hair behind an ear. Yep, she was smiling. So was he. He felt his skin heat, but not as a side-effect of his super power ability to create fire. This heat was due to thoughts of Oci running her small warm hands down his back and tilting her face up to accept his kiss.


“ How about a movie?” Oceanus asked.


“ Which one?” Jeff replied, scanning the traffic and then his girlfriend.


Oci’s thin arms, delicate wrists, and bird-like legs that barely reached the floorboards, all gave the impression she needed protection and caring for. Whereas, with her super strength, she could lift the car they drove in onto two wheels if someone were trapped underneath.


“ Oh, perfect!” Oceanus flung her hair over her shoulder and straightened in her seat. Her smile illuminated Jeff’s peripheral vision as he concentrated on traffic. “The one I want to see starts in forty-five minutes. That gives us plenty of time to get there, get popcorn and some good seats, and watch the previews. I love the previews, don’t you?”


Jeff glanced at her again. The devilish glint in her eye made him frown. “What movie?”


Oceanus peeked through thick black lashes. Jeff was pretty sure she even batted them a bit. “What movie, Oci?”


“ Accidental Hero.” At Jeff’s groan, Oceanus chuckled. “Come on, you have to admit the storyline looks kinda familiar. Besides, the special effects look amazing. You love that crap.”


Jeff stared at the traffic and said nothing. He knew it was useless. He could mount the best argument against seeing the movie, but Oceanus always got her way. Cursing his Oceanus-shaped soft spot, he turned at the next intersection and headed toward the theater.


The whiny guitar tones of the heavy metal song Super Villain erupted from his cell phone. He looked at the display and saw Mother’s number. “Can you answer that?”


Reaching for his phone, Oceanus said, “You know, now that we aren’t technically super villains anymore, you should consider changing your ringtone.”


 


King of BadKing of Bad: Super Villain Academy #1


Jeff Mean would rather set fires than follow rules or observe curfew. He wears his bad boy image like a favorite old hoodie; that is until he learns he has superpowers and is recruited by Super Villain Academy – where you learn to be good at being bad. In a school where one kid can evaporate all the water from your body and the girl you hang around with can perform psychic sex in your head, bad takes on a whole new meaning. Jeff wonders if he’s bad enough for SVA.


He may never find out. Classmates vilify him when he develops good manners. Then he’s kidnapped by those closest to him and left to wonder who is good and who is bad. His rescue is the climactic episode that balances good and evil in the super world. The catalyst – the girl he’s crushing on. A girlfriend and balancing the Supers is good, right? Or is it…bad?


 

Amazon * Barnes & Noble

 


Author Kai StrandAuthor Kai Strand


When her children were young and the electricity winked out, Kai Strand gathered her family around the fireplace and they told stories, one sentence at a time. Her boys were rather fond of the ending, “And then everybody died. The end.” Now an award winning children’s author, Kai crafts fiction for kids and teens to provide an escape hatch from their reality. With a selection of novels for young adult and middle grade readers and short stories for the younger ones, Kai entertains children of all ages, and their adults.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Blog

Pinterest * Goodreads * Google+ * Youtube

 


 

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Blast Giveaway


$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash


Ends 7/20/14


Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the publisher. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.


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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

MIND GAMES REVIEW

Remember a few days ago when Award Winning Author Christine Amsden visited and talked about series books? Well, I read her latest fantasy novel, MIND GAMES, and would like to share my thoughts with you.
 
 
 
 
 
Mind Games (Cassie Scot Book 3)

Synopsis:
Beware your heart and soul…

Evan broke Cassie’s heart two months ago, and she still doesn’t know why. She throws herself into family, friends and her new job at the sheriff’s department, but nothing helps. The only thing that finally allows her heal and move on is the love of a new man, mind mage Matthew Blair. Cassie finds him…irresistible.
Matthew may also be the only one who can help keep the non-magical residents of Eagle Rock from going crazy over the murder of a beloved pastor’s wife. It looks like a sorcerer is to blame, but while Cassie tries to figure out who, others take matters into their own hands. With tensions running so hot, a single spark might set Eagle Rock ablaze.

First Chapter: http://christineamsden.com/wordpress/?page_id=3118 (Warning: Contains series spoilers.)

My Thoughts:

MIND GAMES Review

By Christine Amsden

Sometimes love hurts. Sometimes love is complicated. Sometimes it’s time to move on to a new love, to a new life. This is what Cassie Scot does in Award Winning Author Christine Amsden’s latest novel MIND GAMES: A CASSIE SCOT NOVEL. Or rather what she tries to do. If only her ex-boyfriend would cooperate.

Cassie Scot, star of Christine Amsden’s CASSIE SCOT Mystery series, is back, along with old familiar characters (if you’ve read books one and two) and the addition of some interesting new characters. You’ve heard of love triangles. Well, Cassie is caught in one of those. Her triangle is a bit different to the norm, however. Evan Blackwood, her old flame, has magical powers. Matthew Blair, her new beau, is a mind mage. They’re both determined to protect Cassie, especially from each other. As if two wannabe heroes aren’t enough to deal with Cassie, who has no magic at all, soon finds herself, along with Wesley Blake, her new partner at the sheriff‘s office where she works, investigating a fire, a death, and other weird happenings in town. As she grows closer to the truth, she also discovers more secrets about her past. Sometimes the truth is painful, too.

I adored books one and two in the series and was excited when MIND GAMES was published. It did not disappoint. Cassie is brave though not perfect. She makes mistakes. She has doubts. In other words, she’s human, not just a paper character in a book. The author is great at creating characters that are so real the reader can identify with them, the good and the bad ones. Ms. Amsden is also good at throwing in surprises and twists and turns. More than once I said, “I didn’t see that coming.” Since the novel contains a huge cast of characters, keeping track of all of them could be confusing. The author has taken care of that with a listing of the characters at the back, reminding the reader who each one is.

I recommend MIND GAMES and the other books in the series for your reading enjoyment. Good news: STOLEN DREAMS, Book four in the series is scheduled for release in July, 2014. I’m so glad because the ending of this book demands more. Happy Reading.

###

Buy Links

Amazon

Barnes and Noble


Print release June 15. Audiobook release TBA.


In case you have trouble with the hyperlinkes:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JLRNZ3C


Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mind-games-christine-amsden/1119167384


Author Bio:

Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.


At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, a condition that effects the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.


In addition to writing, Christine teaches workshops on writing at Savvy Authors. She also does some freelance editing work.


Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children.


And don't forget the Giveaway. Here it is again if you haven't entered:

 
 
 






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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Today is the birthday for THE MONSTER WITHIN


Don't you just love book birthdays? More good reading to look forward to.
Take a look at THE MONSTER WITHIN and pick up a copy.
Here's the link.
 
 
 
Congratulations, Kelly.


Monday, June 16, 2014

THE MONSTER WITHIN TRAILER

Welcome Monday.
How about a video today? Great. I thought you'd like the idea.
Here's the trailer for Kelly Hashway's  THE MONSTER WITHIN.





If that doesn't work, here's the link to You Tube: http://youtu.be/gEqgNnQTYlI

THE MONSTER WITHIN is also available at NetGalley if you'd like to pick up a copy.

Happy Reading

Saturday, June 14, 2014

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, DAD IN HEAVEN


My dad's the barber.
50 cent haircuts
 
Sept. 3, 1901 - Sept. 11, 1964
 
 

 
Mom and Dad
Date unknown.
 
Love you.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Cover Reveal THE HOUND AT THE GATE

This Fun Friday is really a Fun Friday.
Because
I get to share the cover of Award Winning Author Darby Karchut's latest novel for middle grade readers. Yea! Take a look.
THE HOUND AT THE GATE
 
The talented artist for this cover is Lisa Amowitz.
All I can say is "Wow!"
 
 
Jacket copy:
Autumn: the season of endings. And beginnings.
 
Especially for one young apprentice.

At the annual Festival of the Hunt, thirteen-year-old apprentice goblin hunter Finn MacCullen and his master, Gideon Lir, join other Tuatha De Danaan to honor their people’s heritage. But Finn soon realizes that there are some who denounce his right to attend due to his half-human bloodline.

As he struggles to keep his place by his master’s side, he finds himself embroiled in a decades-old grudge between Gideon and another Knight, bewildered (and beguiled) by a female apprentice with a temper as explosive as his own, and battling a pack of goblins determined to wipe out the entire camp in a surprise attack.

It’s going to take some fancy knife work, the help of a female Knight with a lethal bow, and one old pick up truck to defeat the goblins and prove to his people that Finn’s blood runs true-blue Tuatha De Danaan


 ###

Learn more about Darby and Spenser Hill Press here:




Congratulations, Darby, on another fabulous novel.

Happy Friday the 13th. Good luck day.




Wednesday, June 11, 2014

MIND GAMES VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR

Mind Games (Cassie Scot Book 3)


Beware your heart and soul…

Evan broke Cassie’s heart two months ago, and she still doesn’t know why. She throws herself into family, friends and her new job at the sheriff’s department, but nothing helps. The only thing that finally allows her heal and move on is the love of a new man, mind mage Matthew Blair. Cassie finds him…irresistible.

Matthew may also be the only one who can help keep the non-magical residents of Eagle Rock from going crazy over the murder of a beloved pastor’s wife. It looks like a sorcerer is to blame, but while Cassie tries to figure out who, others take matters into their own hands. With tensions running so hot, a single spark might set Eagle Rock ablaze.

First Chapter: http://christineamsden.com/wordpress/?page_id=3118 (Warning: Contains series spoilers. New readers to the series would be better off checking out the preview of book one below.)


Buy Links

Amazon

Barnes and Noble


Print release June 15. Audiobook release TBA.

The author has some interesting things to say about series books.

The Life and Death of a Series

The world is full of series for one simple reason: They make money! Readers who enjoy one story clamor for more – more of the character or of the world, the mystery or the romance. Whatever it is they loved, they want to recapture that feeling in a sequel.

Problem is, people don't always know what's best for them. There is definitely such a thing as too much of a good thing. Some books are better off as stand-alones, even if there are loose threads at the end. When does life ever come to a neat conclusion anyway? Not every secondary character needs a story of his or her own just like we don't really get to know all the people we meet. And as far as I know the world has never come to a neat “happily ever after” – wars come and go, politicians rise and fall, movements ebb and flow.

There are several different types of series, many of which it would probably be more accurate to call serials. A serial is a story that is relayed in installments, so that in actuality you are reading one big story broken into chunks. The Lord of the Rings is a classic example of what I mean. A true series is a collection of closely related stories, but in fiction the term has come to be applied to both types of stories, and to those that fall in the gray area in between.

My own Cassie Scot series falls in the gray area. It consists of four individual mysteries that begin and end in each book (a series) and a bigger story arc that connects all four books such that you wouldn't want to read them out of order (serial). This is a popular pattern these days and there is a good reason for it: Each book provides some sense of closure, while the developing serial arc allows the author to tell a richer, deeper, more complete story. Cliffhanger endings are very common in these middle-ground stories.

SERIES

The biggest danger with a true series (a collection of related stories) is that it outlives its spark. You can look to television for examples of this happening – a great idea that develops a following tends to run about two seasons longer than it should. This happened with Friends over a decade ago, and it's happening right now with How I Met Your Mother. I suspect, though I'm not yet done enjoying the show, that this is going to happen to The Big Bang Theory, which was just renewed through season ten.

To find parallels to the death of the once-great TV show in literature, you need look no further than the mystery and suspense genres. I don't know how many people have told me that James Patterson used to write good books. I myself have seriously burned out reading Jayne Ann Krentz's novels, which have formed something of an amalgam in my mind. These authors are good. These books are good. But then they keep going, doing the same thing over and over again until you're sick to death of it or, in the worst case scenario, doing *almost* the same thing over and over again – but without the spark that once made it great.

Series usually come to life because an author wrote a great book and fans clamor for more. Series die because the “more” doesn't stop when it should. Ideally, a series should stop before the freshness and fun wears off. If you shoot past that point into nostalgia, you're probably still okay. It's when you pass nostalgia and find yourself in “they're still making those?” land that you're in trouble. Unfortunately, the market tends to drive the length of series, which means they go as long as they make money.

SERIALS

Serials are a different story. Serials were written to be a long story chunked into volumes. They usually have a preset beginning, middle, and end. For those who enjoy what is essentially a very long story, they work as long as the author has done a reasonable amount of planning. And that plan must include rising tension throughout the serial. Flat-lining is not an option. This is what happened to Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series. Conversely, Jim Butcher's Codex Alara series was exactly six books long (clearly planned from the start) and the tension grew in each installment. (Note: These installments come to a stopping point, if not an end.)

The accidental serial usually falls flat. This is what I call books that would have worked well as a stand-alone, but then the author kept going. The Hunger Games is an example of what I mean by this. The first book in this series could be enjoyed as a stand-alone scifi psychological horror with a bit of a twist. The ending left a small romantic subplot hanging, but I could have lived with that. In the sequels, the author expands upon the world that created The Hunger Games in the first place, exposing the underlying weaknesses in the world and character-building that didn't really matter in the first book because it wasn't about any of that. The entire series continued to get good ratings, but a quick look over at goodreads showed that the average rating for this series went down, especially for Mockingjay. I more commonly see the average ratings for series go up slightly due to sample bias – readers who enjoyed the first book are more likely to rate/review the sequels. Readers who gave the first book one star are usually done.

PERFECT HARMONY

Yes, I'm biased, but I definitely prefer the kind of series I wrote – the kind that combines aspects of the series and the serial. This is very popular in contemporary, urban, and paranormal fantasy. You get the kick-ass hero or heroine going on one adventure per book, while the character and world develop over time. The stakes often get higher in each volume, which makes this type of series a little different from the other types in one important aspect: How it comes to life in the first place.

Straight serial and series readers are rarely going to give a second book a try if they didn't really enjoy the first. But readers of the harmonious middle ground have come to understand that sometimes, while the first book in a series is only okay, the series itself still has potential. This is never any truer than in The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Storm Front, the first book in this long-standing series, is frankly meh. So's the second. The third whetted my appetite. After the fourth, I couldn't get enough! Series aren't all like this, and there is some truth to the question, “Why should I have to read three books to fall in love with a series?” You shouldn't. I can't explain why I was willing to do it for The Dresden Files, except that I didn't think the first book was bad, I just didn't love it, and I saw an underlying spark of potential I wanted to see fulfilled. I did not, however, give Kim Harrison even a single volume to win me over despite many readers telling me that it gets really good in the second or third book. I'll take their words for it.

The difference between Kim Harrison and Jim Butcher is character. Harry Dresden was someone I immediately wanted to get to know, even if the story-telling was a bit weak right off the bat. I can't remember the name of the witch in Harrison's series, but nothing at all drew me to her. Plus, I got lost in the world building. I can't say for sure, but I suspect readers who stuck with Harrison were more likely to go for a cool world than a compelling character.

I'm a character girl. :)

There is no “right” length for a series like this. They can continue indefinitely as long as one thing is true: Something has to change or move in each book. They can't stagnate. If things are moving – if the character is developing and the stakes are getting higher – I will still be clamoring for your fifteenth book in a series (Harry Dresden). If things stagnate I'll drop it. This is what happened with Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse books. The main character never seemed to change at all (only the men she dated). It is possible that this series is yet another example of how taste can influence you – I wanted Sookie to grow and she didn't. The world was developing, I just didn't care enough about that part. It is worth noting that in The Dresden Files, which has kept me going longer than any other series I've ever read, both the character, the supporting characters, and the world are in constant flux. I doubt it would have worked without all of that going on.

I planned my own series to be four books long. I actually wanted to try for seven because I made a point of saying that seven is a powerfully magical number, but I didn't want to drag the romance out over seven books. Four was just ... enough. And if there's one thing I want to make sure of, it's that people walk away from each volume in my series feeling energized for the next, and walk away from the end feeling satisfied. It doesn't need to keep going forever. I can always write another series.

OTHER SERIES

It is worth noting that there are even more types of series than what I've mentioned here. The romance genre is fond of the sibling parallel, in which each of three to eight (I haven't seen more than eight) members of a family each have their own turn at a romance. These books are almost always readable in or out of order. Essentially, each one is a different story but you get glimpses of the other characters from a distance, adding that sense of nostalgia. I often think of these as more of a marketing gimmick than a true series, unless something more connects them. For example, Sabrina Jeffries has a Regency Romance series in which a mystery has been spanning the books. We get a new clue about who really killed their parents in each one. I'm finding it refreshing and it is making me look forward to reading the last book.

CONCLUSION

There are a lot of different types of series out there to suit individual tastes. Many try to hang on longer than they should because people will buy them. But many tell a wonderful, complete story that is bigger than any individual book. In fact, when people ask me what my favorite books are I sometimes blank. I read so many books that remembering a single one is difficult. I remember authors. I remember series. I'm thrilled to be offering readers a chance to spend four books with Cassie Scot so they can get to know her as well as I have.

Thank you, Christine. I didn't know all that.

Author Bio


Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.


At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, a condition that effects the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.


In addition to writing, Christine teaches workshops on writing at Savvy Authors. She also does some freelance editing work.


Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children.



Social Media Links:

· Website
· Newsletter
· Blog
· Facebook
· Twitter
· Goodreads
· Google+
 


 


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Monday, June 9, 2014

MEET MIKKI SADIL, AUTHOR OF CHEERS, CHOCOLATE, AND OTHER DISASTERS

Welcome!
Today, I have the pleasure of hosting Mikki Sadil, author of CHEERS, CHOCOLATE, AND OTHER DISTERS, and THE FREEDOM THIEF. Mikki was kind enough to answer some of my questions. Take it away, Mikki.
 
Hi, Mikki. Welcome to my blog. Please tell us about yourself and how you became a writer.
 
Thank you for hosting me, Beverly. I was born on a horse ranch in Texas, traveled with my military father all over the US and in several foreign countries as a child, and ended up in California. Both parents were great readers, and my mother was a writer and a poet. I started writing as a child, and continued on into my college years, but never gave much thought to becoming an author. Eight years ago, my daughter sent me a box of “how to write for kids” books, with a note telling me to get off my, er, you know, and start writing for real. I enrolled in the Institute of Children’s Literature, and published my first non-fiction article in a national children’s magazine during my first course at ICL. Since then, I’ve published more than 30 stories and articles in magazines, an anthology, and for an online educational publisher, as well as my two books.
 

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
 
Actually, I wanted to raise and train Quarter Horses. I realized that childhood dream with my second marriage: my husband and I built a ranch and raised and trained Appaloosa horses. But I still had a Quarter Horse mare and stallion!
 
 
How did you come up with the idea for your book and were there any glitches along the way?
 
Glitches? A few, but mostly of my own doing. Cheers, Chocolate, and Other Disasters was written as the assignment for my first advanced novel course with ICL. My instructor was quite pleased with it, but for a time it was just “another” story for me. I had worked so hard on my first real novel, which became The Freedom Thief, and I really wanted to get that one edited, revised, polished, and sent off to a publisher. So the Cheers book sat and gathered dust for quite awhile. After MuseItUp Publishing accepted the Thief book, I went back to Cheers. Over time, however, my thoughts about this story had changed, so I had a lot of rewriting to do. After Muse accepted the manuscript, my editors didn’t want the original title. It was way too long, and one part of it indicated “bullying”, and my editors didn’t want it in the title. The story is about a kind of psychological/emotional bullying but it shouldn’t be in the title. So it took a few emails back and forth between the editors and me before I came up with a title everyone was happy with.
 
If we peeked inside your closet, what would we see?
 
Lots of lavender! My favorite color, so I wear a lot of it. Let’s see, you would find some dressy pants and blouses/sweaters, and a whole LOT of jeans, boots, T-shirts and sweatshirts. I don’t like dresses, had to wear them all the years I was teaching at the university, and seldom if ever wear one now. I’d get home from school and couldn’t wait to change into my ranch clothes: jeans, boots, and depending upon the weather, either a T shirt or a sweatshirt. We are retired now, no longer on our ranch, but…you know, you can take the girl out of the ranch but you can’t take the ranch out of the girl. LOL
Tell us your favorites:
Movie
Actor
Actress
Book
Singer or Group
 
My favorites are from the days when movies had real stories and plots, and weren’t just horror for the sake of its shock value, or the ridiculous science-fiction stuff that is all the rage today. I love the movies made by actors and actresses like John Wayne, Glen Ford, Gregory Peck, William Holden, Humphrey Bogart, Clint Eastwood, Kirk Douglas, and Paul Newman. Actresses: Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor, Lauren Bacall, Barbara Stanwyck…the list goes on, and in my opinion, there isn’t an actor or actress today that can begin to compete with these men and women. The movies: The Godfather, Casablanca, Singin’ in the Rain, Lawrence of Arabia, The Indiana Jones movies, To Kill a Mockingbird, and on and on. Real stories, not just shock and violence and these silly space alien invasions. My favorite books are too many to mention, as are singers. But, again, none are of “today’s” genre.
Coffee or tea?
 
Coffee of different flavors…we have a Keurig, so we enjoy many different kinds of coffee.
Spring, Summer, Fall, or Winter?
 
Winter and Spring, for the cold and the rain…which California doesn’t have nearly enough of. Summer is way too hot, and Fall is too indecisive!
If you could have super powers what would you wish for?
 
I guess a lot of people would wish for the power to cure all human suffering and for world peace. That’s a noble wish, and one, I think, we ALL wish for. But if I had some kind of super power, I would wish for enough land and enough money to take care of, for life, every single abused, forgotten, abandoned, and lost dog, cat, and horse in the whole universe.
If you could choose to live in another time, would you prefer the past or the future?
 
Seriously? In the past, when life was so much simpler than it is now. When the main electronics in your home were your telephone, TV, and radio. When “trust” and “honesty” and “ethics” were not just words in a dictionary, but words you lived by and taught your children to live by. When friends and neighbors were a part of your family. When you could send your children outside to play, and not panic if they didn’t answer the first time you called them. When your kids preferred to read books and play sports than to spend hours playing violent and stupid video games because their parents weren’t around to monitor and guide them. When the world was just a better place to be in than it is now, and was without the amount and kind of violence we have to deal with on a daily basis.
What is something about you that no one knows?
 
LOL. I’m laughing because I think most anyone who wants to know anything about me probably knows everything. I’m not a very complicated person.

Are you working on any new books now? Tell us about them.
 
My WIP is an historical/paranormal/mystery. Historical because it is set in a traveling carnival in the early days of the Great Depression. Paranormal in that there are psychic abilities, gargoyles, and witches…no very over-done vampires or werewolves. A mystery because it concerns the murders of three small girls, and the whole town that has kept those murders a secret for many years. The name of the novel is Beneath The Possum Belly: Night Cries, and is the first of a trilogy. And no, I’m not going to explain what “possum belly” means, except to say that it has nothing to do with a real possum!
Where can your fans learn more about you?
Website:
Blog: www.mikki-wordpainter.blogspot.com
Facebook: I’m on FB, Twitter, and Goodreads, as well as Linked-In, but don’t have a fan page and probably never will have. I don’t care much for the social media stuff. I do have an author’s page on Goodreads, and on Amazon.
Twitter:
Goodreads:
Other:
Would you like to share anything else with your fans?
 
My books, The Freedom Thief and Cheers, Chocolate, and Other Disasters, are for kids from 10-14, and are written appropriately for their enjoyment. I hope you all will give them a try. They are ebooks, and are available at the MuseItUp bookstore, and on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and most other ebook distributors. Thanks for stopping by Beverly’s blog and reading this interview. I appreciate it.
Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to visit with us. Stop by anytime.

Thanks, Beverly, for having me on your blog. I liked your questions, and enjoyed answering them. Hope I wasn’t too long-winded.

Wow! What an interesting author.
Now, about the books:



THE FREEDOM THIEF

MuseItUp Publishing, November, 2013
Tagline:

Sometimes it takes a thief to do the right thing.

Blurb:

Its the middle of the night. A surreptitious journey begins into an unknown world of hostility, danger, and deception.

Thirteen year old Ben McKenna leads his slave friend Joshua, and Joshuas parents, Bess and Jesse, in a daring escape from the plantation Bens grandmother owns. Unless they make good their escape, Bens father will sell the crippled Joshua, punish his parents, and possibly imprison his own son.

A collapsing tunnel nearly buries them alive, a dangerous swamp threatens to drown them, and deceptive rescuers keep them imprisoned, forcing a daring, daylight escape. Everywhere they turn, they must outsmart deceitful “friends” and elude slave hunters. On the last leg of their journey, Joshua is almost captured when the four friends attempt to get past a Union fort. By the time they finally reach the Ohio River and the man who will take them across to freedom, more than three perilous and life-threatening months have passed since they left the plantation.

Will Ben cross the river with his friends, leaving behind his family and all he has ever known, in his effort to fight the conventions of slavery, or will he return home to face the consequences of his actions?





CHEERS, CHOCOLATE, and OTHER DISASTERS

MuseItUp Publishing, April, 2014
 
Tagline:


When the new girl comes to town, nothing in AJs life is safe from disaster, not even cheerleading and chocolate.

Blurb:

My name is Alyson Joanne Devlin, but everyone calls me AJ. I have two best friends, Julie and Jaime, a champion mare, and a great family. Then Celine Carroll came to town, and brought disaster with her. Celine took over my life. Celine took over Julie and Jaime, who arent my BFFs any more. Celine caused me to get hurt in cheerleading.

Speaking of cheerleading, my new partners are Lisa and Amberley, (thanks to Celine), who are the most disliked girls in school. And thats not all. My parents are divorcing. My mare got hurt. Theres a new woman in my dads life. My whole world is upside down. I mean, youd think Celine was some kind of evil omen, wouldnt you? Although, Amberley becomes the one bright light in…well, I guess youll have to read my story to learn about Amberley, and what happens to her, to me, and to Celine.

I can't wait to read these.

About the Author, MIKKI SADIL:

From the time I published my first poem at age ten, and first short story two years later, Ive had a passion for writing. As so often happens when you are young, however, life got in the way and I didnt write much during the years of college, marriage and children, university teaching, and a divorce and remarriage. After my husband and I retired from twenty-two years of breeding and training Appaloosa horses, I returned to writing. My stories and articles have been featured in national childrens magazines, in online magazines, in an educational website, and in an anthology of horror stories for teens. My debut novel, The Freedom Thief, came out in November, 2013, and is an historical adventure for boys (mostly) age ten to thirteen, set in pre-Civil War Kentucky. Cheers, Chocolate, and Other Disasters is a contemporary novel about psychological bullying, and is for girls (mostly) age ten to thirteen.

I live on the Central Coast of California with my awesome husband and our beloved zoo of one way-too-smart Corgi, Dylan, one fat Siamese, Mr. Beaujangles, and one bossy African Gray Parrot, Shadow.

Thanks to all for visiting today. Comments are welcome.

Happy Reading.
 
 
 



Friday, June 6, 2014

TEASER #4 THE MONSTER WITHIN

The release date is growing closer and closer. Here is Kelly's teaser #4 for THE MONSTER WITHIN.

What do you think?
 
Happy Reading.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

INSECURE WRITERS SUPPORT GROUP & WRITER'S REBEL CREED

 
It's the first Wednesday in June and time once again for The Insecure Writer's Support Group.
 
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
 
This is awesome Alex  J. Cavanaugh's great idea
His awesome co-hosts for the June 4 posting of the IWSG will be C. Lee McKenzie, Tracy Jo, Melanie Schulz, and LG Keltner!
 
LITTLE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT
 
As I was trying to decide what to write about today, I realized I have few complaints. Sure, I'm still waiting on books to be published. That's already been discussed. It's out of my hands, so why worry? I'm trying a new process--fast drafting--to see if I can finish a story in a year or less rather than two or three years. I don't know if it will help since I just started, but it seems to be working so far. So, I guess my advice today is enjoy your writing and don't stress out over delays, crummy first drafts, or writing a query letter and synopsis. Did I mention that's also what I'm doing now? Whoever invented the query letter and synopsis is probably laughing at mine at this moment. Well, let them try writing one.
 
Just kidding. Sort of.  
 
Do you Fast Draft your stories? Does it help?
 
Let's see how I'm doing on my WRITER'S REBEL CREED
 
 
This is S. A. Larsen's idea.
 
1. Regular writing. Monday through Friday I write at least two hours a day. Sometimes I write on Saturday.
2. Belief in my abilities. Most of the time.
3. Fearless to write something new. I have an idea but it will have to wait.
4. Trust in the beauty of revisions. Oh, yeah. My first drafts are ugly.
5. Better my marketing skills. Working on it.
6. Give back to my writing community. I read and review their books, interview authors, and spotlight their books and cover reveals, as well as Tweeting and Face Booking and Googling.
7. Support other writers. I think that's about the same as #6. Or is it different?
8. Dream Big. Oh, yeah.
 
Happy Reading and Writing
 
 






Monday, June 2, 2014

TEX AND THE GOD SQUAD

He's back. Tex from TEX, THE WITCH BOY and TEX AND THE GANGS OF SUBURBIA has more adventures in store for his readers. As usual, Tex's life is never dull. Let's see what he's up to now.



TEX AND THE GOD SQUAD Review

By Stuart R. West

The senior year of high school is exciting, scary, and the end for students, the end of friendships as they each go their own way, the end of detention and bad cafeteria food, the end of life as the students know it. It’s also a beginning of new friendships, new schools or jobs, and a future that’s uncertain and scary too. And, if you’re Richard (Tex) McKenna, senior at Clearwell High, besides worrying where you’ll attend college and who will take care of your wheelchair bound father if you go away, you also have to deal with suicide, a cult spreading hate about gays and other sins, another witch boy, and a couple of murders. Never a dull moment at Clearwell High.

In TEX AND THE GOD SQUAD, the third book of the Tex series, by Author Stuart R. West, Tex McKenna and friends are back, along with some new characters. School is almost out. In addition to trying to decide what university to attend after graduation, Tex is a prime suspect in every death that occurs since he seems to always be at the scene of the crime. Tex (a witch) doesn’t like to use his magic unless absolutely necessary, but the police are having little success discovering the killer so Tex might have to intervene. I don’t want to say too much and give anything away, so I’m stopping here, except to say there are some surprises along the way that I wasn’t expecting. Love it when that happens.

The author has written a story that points out just how far some people/groups will go in their hatred for those they believe are evil or different or whatever they believe of them. TEX AND THE GOD SQUAD is a story of teens doing the best they can under their circumstances. It’s a story of friendship, family, love, and facing the future as uncertain is it might be. All high school and middle school libraries, as well as public libraries should have a copy of this novel in their e book catalog. You’ll want one for your own e-reader too.

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Happy Reading