Writing what you know with Erica Kiefer

Erica Kiefer iconInside my closet sits a large storage bin. It’s heavy enough that I claimed my work-out for the day after hauling it up a flight of stairs, completing squats and bicep curls as I transferred it from one location to another.

I’m no packrat by any means, but some of those items inside that bin have been hauled around since I was nine-years-old, traveling with me from country to country as I lived the “military brat” lifestyle of moving every two to four years while my dad served as a diplomat in the foreign service.

From Thailand to Indonesia, back to Thailand, and eventually returning to the United States, I’ve hauled these personal journals with me all over the world, accumulating a new one every year until I reached my mid-twenties and began capturing memories through a family blog.

The backaches and muscle burn of relocating those books has proved its worth though. Utilizing my plethora of journals, I’ve followed the advice to write what you know, turning reality into relatable fiction. Continue reading

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Christmas in Atlantis, Novel by Alyssa Day

Book cover Christmas in AtlantisTitle: Christmas in Atlantis (Poseidon’s Warriors) by Alyssa Day
Publication date: December 4th 2017
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

Synopsis

A tortured warrior…

Warrior-turned-pirate Dare is the black sheep of all Atlantis. He enraged Poseidon, the sea god, so much that Dare had to forfeit his ship and the water spirit who inhabits it. For Dare, being denied the ocean is worse than death…until he comes home to a woman who drowns him in waves of hunger more powerful than the sea.  But black sheep and scoundrels can never deserve love, even during the magic of the first Christmas in Atlantis.

An artist who sees the world through song…

After the accident that killed her parents and blinded her, Lyric discovered she had a special gift—that of song sight. She now sees the world in her own unique way, and her paintings are full of light and magic. When the Atlantean warrior she’s fallen in love with takes her to his home in Atlantis, she finds a rare magical artifact that could change her world forever.  Or it could deliver to Dare the thing he most desires.

Atlantis’s first Christmas is coming…

It’s the season of miracles in Atlantis. A chance to make wishes come true.  And when Lyric tells her new Atlantean friends O Henry’s story The Gift of the Magi, the world—and Lyric and Dare—may never be the same.

*Warning: This book contains magic, song sight, Atlantis, Poseidon, the gift of the magi, pirates, a king and queen, sibling rivalry, a black sheep, bad boys, warriors, paranormal romance, fantasy, Christmas decorations, holiday spiked eggnog, smugglers, ancient artifacts, romance, kisses, and a happily ever after. Read at your own risk! Continue reading

The Upside of Falling Down by Rebekah Crane

Novel by Rebekah CraneTitle: The Upside of Falling Down by Rebekah Crane
Published by: Skyscape
Publication date: January 30th 2018
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

Synopsis

For Clementine Haas, finding herself is more than a nice idea. Ever since she woke up in an Irish hospital with complete amnesia, self-discovery has become her mission.

They tell her she’s the lone survivor of a plane crash. They tell her she’s lucky to be alive. But she doesn’t feel lucky. She feels…lost.

With the relentless Irish press bearing down on her, and a father she may not even recognize on his way from America to take her home, Clementine assumes a new identity and enlists a blue-eyed Irish stranger, Kieran O’Connell, to help her escape her forgotten life…and start a new one.

Hiding out in the sleepy town of Waterville, Ireland, Clementine discovers there’s an upside to a life that’s fallen apart. But as her lies grow, so does her affection for Kieran, and the truth about her identity becomes harder and harder to reveal, forcing Clementine to decide: Can she leave her past behind for a new love she’ll never forget? Continue reading

I Burned Down His House by Jessica Frances

Jessica Frances Burned down houseTitle: I Burned Down His House (Love at First Crime #3) by Jessica Frances
Publication date: November 28th 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

Synopsis

She burned his house down, so he lit a fire between them that she could never extinguish.

So, I burned his house down.

It was an accident.

I mean, technically, the dog did it.

Well, the dog helped me to do it.

Did I mention it was an accident?

When circumstances mean I suddenly have a new housemate,

A man who is my ultimate fantasy,

And my entire world is turned upside down by new friends,

And a dog who likes to get me into trouble,

I have to wonder how my life got so crazy.

Add in my neighbor, who is under investigation;

Some unfinished business from the past, which just won’t go away;

Interfering family, who don’t know when to stop;

And mixed signals, making me wonder if fantasies really can come true,

And you have my new, hectic, crazy life.

But, when things take a dangerous turn,

And lives are on the line,

Will we all make it through in one piece?

Or is everything destined to crumble down around us?

Who would have thought that burning down a house would change everything so much?

Then again, as some people say: there is nothing quite like love at first … crime. Continue reading

Noelle Adams Presents, Christmas with a Prince

Christmas with a Prince Noelle AdamsChristmas with a Prince (Rothman Royals, Book 4) by Noelle Adams
Publication date: November 29th 2017
Genres: Adult, Romance

Synopsis

I might be a former party girl and the over-indulged daughter of a multi-millionaire, but for the last few years I’ve been trying to be work hard and be good. I have enough right now to deal with–graduate school, my community literacy program, preparations for Christmas, and my dad’s constant attempts to find me a husband. I definitely don’t want to put up with Henry always hanging around, acting obnoxious and looking far too sexy.

My boss forced me to take on Henry as a literacy volunteer for the month of December. I don’t know anything about him except he’s from somewhere in Europe, and he’s spoiled, entitled, arrogant, stubborn… and incredibly hot. He’s the kind of guy I’ve been trying to stay away from. Plus he’s got a secret–something he’s hiding from me.

Now I can’t think of anything but him, and I’m stuck with him until Christmas is over. Continue reading

Introducing Author, Carla Rehse

Carla RehseWhere did you grow up?

I’m an Army brat, so I traveled the world. I consider Texas my home.

How many books have you written? Published?

I’ve written 5 books, but Pink Lock Picks and Sequined Witch Hats is the first to be published.

What kind of writer are you?

I’m very much a plotter. I have a “storyboard” wall in my office with three chalkboards for outlines, plot threads, and characters. It helps me to be visual.

Tell us a little about your main character

Gracie is rather complicated. She’s trying to figure out what she wants in life, like a lot of seventeen-year-olds. She also has a strong sense of loyalty and a fuzzy moral compass.

Gracie is the person you’d want in the foxhole with you, as she’d do anything to get everyone out alive. Continue reading

Julia Royston Shares 10 Promotion Mistakes Authors Make

Julia Royston promotion

Promotion is not one of my favorite things to do after the book is written.  I love the creative process of writing.  Over time, I have realized that if you don’t promote, people don’t know you have it let alone be able to buy it.  Promotion is key but I have found so many things that turn me off from even looking at your book that authors do.  The following is a short list and I am quite sure that I will discover others but avoid these promotional errors.

  • Promotion without building relationships.
  • Only post about their book and nothing else.
  • Never congratulate anyone else on their accomplishments or book publishing. If you don’t sow support, you don’t reap support.  Use wisdom but support others.
  • Authors who don’t travel, whether virtually or in-person to new places to meet new people.
  • A broader audience must be sought after. They are not just going to knock on your door.  You must meet new people and get out of your comfort zone.
  • Unwilling to invest in promotional outlets or other advertisements
  • Instant Messaging or in-boxing someone with a sales offer as soon as someone accepts your friend request. Get ready to be unfriended and/or blocked quickly.
  • Their links don’t work or a take action button or the contact information is not included when they do promote and they lose the sale.
  • Authors who don’t have an email list

Promoting your book on someone else’ page, group or event without their permission.  Don’t build your following or promote to someone else’s tribe WITHOUT permission.  Ask if unsure.  Don’t just post because you see someone else do it, they may have received permission. Continue reading

Introducing Skye Leah Collett

How do you as an author spend your day?

Oh god, I’m certain no authors spend their days like me. I took a redundancy from work over a year ago so pretty much have no other obligations except looking after my kid and writing. I’ve probably written less in the last year than I have in the last two years, but self-promo takes up a lot of time too, so I have been working on that, but I wish every day I was more disciplined and efficient, it’s just not who I am though… ha ha ha what ya gonna do? Sigh.

How to find time to write as a parent?

I have the most amazing kid, he’s an only child and mature beyond his years and incredibly self-sufficient so he never makes writing more challenging if anything he makes it easier.

What made you want to become an author and do you feel it was the right decision?

I used to write scripts when I was a teenager and make my friends act them out. I’ve wanted to be a writer since before then, I never finished a novel though until Single Rider and that was when I finally believed I could do it and now that’s the only thing I want to do.

Describe your writing style.

I am the biggest procrastinator in the world! I have massive bursts of energy that are completely unpredictable and can feel inspired by myself, something I’ve seen or heard or read, too much caffeine or sometimes even nothing at all. I’m incredibly undisciplined. I’m really dragging my feet with Britta and have bailed on it a few times, and I adore the story I just get bored easily…. I need like a manager who watches over me and forces me to write on a schedule then I’d be more productive.

What book do you think everyone should read?

The Shining – Stephen King, scared the absolute crap out of me. Honestly, I always say I have a top 20 of books and if you made me sit down and write them out that 20 would turn to 50 to 100 and so on… I have too many favorites. Continue reading

10Qs with Author, J.E. Smythe

JE SmytheIf you could spend time a character from your book who would it be?

It would probably be Odessa. She has so many unknowns to her and she is so complex that she becomes the kind of villain that you would hate but want to just give her a hug and make her feel better all at the same time.

She’s so closed off that you want to sit down with her and get to know her better. You want to know what makes her tick, what hurts her, and what has hardened her heart against the world.

If you could automatically get a skill that one of your characters possess what would it be?

I would like to have Chanel’s computer hacking skills. She can get into so many computer systems that at times I think that’s a gift that I need in my life. But seriously, Chanel is that artist free spirit type that is able to make light of tough situations and she brings a calm balance to Emilia. I think everyone needs a friend that helps us see the best in everything

Which character from your book could use a hug or slap?

Odessa could use a hug and a slap all at the same time.

Tell us about your book cover and how it came about.

For me, my book cover should always be like an art piece that summarized what the book is all about. This was no different. I wanted it to be haunting and have the focal point on a woman surrounded by nothing but woods. I wanted someone to look into her eyes and see that there was a story there.

How do you choose the names of your characters? Continue reading

Ten Fantastic Things to do in California by Alexandra Sokoloff

I consider myself fabulously lucky because my Huntress Moon series is a manhunt, which means it’s basically a constant road trip – my all-time favorite thing to do. So my characters live out these fantastic things in California, my characters’ home base. In no particular order!!

Pioneertown and Pappy and Harriet’s in Yucca Valley; Joshua Tree National Park

You have to take the above as a package! I love the ocean. I love cosmopolitan cities. But there’s something about the desert that is profoundly peaceful and inspirational to me.

Pioneertown is an actual film set, built out in Yucca Valley by movie cowboys Roy Rogers, Dick Curtis, and used to shoot numerous westerns. The motel they built still operates and is completely charming, and you can walk a hundred yards across the sand to one of the greatest bars and music venues I know in California: Pappy and Harriet’s, where countless LA bands have played, to funky and enthusiastic crowds.

Combine a night in Pioneertown with a camping trip out in the alien landscape of Joshua Tree National Park – I’m in heaven.

Sequoia National Park

You haven’t really experienced a forest until you’ve hiked through these massive beauties – the redwoods and Sequoias. Primeval is the word.

Salton Sea 

The second largest body of water in California, 350 square miles of salt water in the Sonoran Desert. From a distance, idyllic. Flocks of birds gliding along the rippling blue surface past vast shorelines of deserted white beaches. Up close – it’s a wasteland of apocalyptic proportions. But if you’re into trippy desert settings, ghost towns, found art, and the best spooky photo ops on the planet, this is a must-see tourist stop. Just don’t go mid-summer. You were warned.

San Francisco

“The City” needs no introduction, but even with the massive gentrification and Silicon Valley invasion, it’s still the most breathtaking city I know. I love the Haight, still crazy and psychedelic; Golden Gate Park; the Mission; the museums; just staring out at the Bay… Hey, I’m no fool. I made San Francisco my FBI headquarters in the Huntress series so I could spend time there all the time – with no actual traffic!

Berkeley 

Just across the Bay, a 30-minute BART ride from the city, Berkeley is still its magical, synchronistic self. One of my power spots, my college town, and first school teems with art, film, music, politics, culture, and eccentricity. And it’s GORGEOUS. Try the Rose Garden at Sunset, walk through the eucalyptus groves on campus, go to a film or a protest… it is the most vibrantly alive place I know. Continue reading