Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What Are Your Christmas Traditions?

Hi Everyone,

Christmas is in a few days!!! What traditions do you and your family do? Here's a few of my family's traditions.


We always put our Christmas tree up the day after Christmas. My kids go crazy decorating the tree.

Then some time in Decemember we decorate ginger bread house. We do take some help from the store on that one. We always buy the kits. That way we can get right to the building and decorating and don't have spend the day baking the house parts. LOL

We do the traditional dinner and open presents.

We love to drive around looking at Christmas lights.

That's some of our traditions. What are some of yours?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Guest Blogger: Kelly Abell




























http://www.amazon.com/Online-Angel-ebook/dp/B003EV5SLI/ref=sr_1_1_title_1_kin?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1323710868&sr=1-1



Welcome Kelly Abell. She is here to tell us about her Christmas story "Online Angel"
An innocent trip to an online store to buy her three year old son a Christmas gift turns into a living nightmare for Cheryl Rubio. Mark, her poker obsessed husband has just cleaned out their entire savings account for a high stakes poker tournament three weeks before Christmas. On top of that he's decided to leave her and the son he never wanted because Cheryl "doesn't get him". Devastated, scared and confused Cheryl must find a way to keep her struggling law practice alive and provide some kind of Christmas for Robbie.


From the Author
I love being an author and writing books for you, my readers. Thank you for your support and for buying my books. It means a lot.

Please stop by my website to say hello and join so you can receive a copy of my newsletter and keep up with all the latest happenings. kellyabellbooks.com

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Guest Blogger: Gary Peterson




Only 99 Cents!!!!


















http://www.amazon.com/The-Timid-Christmas-Tree-ebook/dp/B006IL29LS/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1323359366&sr=1-2


Looking for a touching story to read to your children at Christmas time? Try "The Timid Christmas Tree" by Gary Peterson.

Bridget is five years old and all excited about going to the woods to get a Christmas tree. When she finds just the right one, she discovers it is alive and frightened. How will she keep her brother from cutting down? Can she convince him that she isn't crazy that the tree is really alive?

A Touching Christmas story that will make an awesome bed time story all year round.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Emily's Journey
























Get it on your kindle Only 99 Cents!!!
http://www.amazon.com/Emilys-Journey-ebook/dp/B0056VALSY/ref=sr_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1323299236&sr=1-8


Excerpt:

Chapter One

Even today, two years and nine months since the rape, she couldn't stand to be in the dark. Emily Malone stood over Andrew's bed in disbelief that he was two years old already. Where had the time gone? She shook her head in wonder as she gazed lovingly at her little boy. Being a single mother was hard, but she wouldn't have missed it for the world. As always, it amazed her that such a wonderful blessing could come out of such a horrible attack. She pulled the blanket up to her son's chin and turned to leave making sure the night light was on.

Emily stopped and stared back at her son's crib, everything would be different tomorrow night at this time. They would be on the family ranch in Texas. She'd missed her Uncle Arty and Abigail a lot over the past few years. The time had come to go back home with her son. Emily knew that she wanted him raised around family. Andrew would love the ranch. It was full of cows, horses and it had the perfect little creek that had always been fun to play in. She would miss her friends here in New York, especially Michael. Although never romantically involved, Michael was the rock she leaned on and would never have made it through that terrible night and the time after if it hadn’t been for him.

Emily opened the door to Michael. “Michael, what are you going to do without me?” She said with a smile on her face.

“I’ll be alright. I still have Rick to spend my nights with.” Michael said.

Knowing that Michael would not be alone made it easier for Emily to leave.

Michael drove them to the airport, leaving the movers to finish packing the rest of their things. At the gate, Michael turned to her and said, “I’m going to miss you two, but I'll be out there in two months. Call me when you land.”

“I'll miss you too. I love you, and I couldn't have done this without you.” Emily said with tears in her eyes.

She hugged him close and he leaned over and kissed Andrew. As she walked through the tunnel to the planes, she looked back one more time as Michael waved and nodded to her. Then she and her son headed home to Texas.

Austin Mathews paced back in forth in the airport lobby, looked at his watch, and then he sighed because the plane was running late. He had already wasted his morning driving out here to pick up his boss's niece and her son. Now the plane was delayed, which meant his afternoon would be shot too. Finally, the plane landed and as he watched the passengers come through the waiting area, he watched for the one who matched the pictures back at the ranch. Finally, he saw her coming through the gate carrying her son, who was wide eyed and looking at everything.

Emily, who had been sent pictures from Abigail, knew exactly what Austin looked like, and walked right up to him. Emily held her hand out to Austin. “Hi, I’m Emily. Thank you very much for coming out here to pick us up. I told Uncle Arty that I would be fine taking a cab, but you know how he is.”

Austin smiled, “It’s no problem at all.” Austin stood there starring back at the gate.

Emily confused, she asked him, “What are you looking at?”

Austin looked at her and said, “I thought you were traveling with someone else, a man named Michael?”

Emily said, “No, Michael isn't with me; he won't be here for two months. I told Abigail that, but she must have misunderstood me.

Austin couldn't imagine letting the woman he loved, especially somebody as beautiful as Emily, and their child move by themselves and not see them for two months. He didn't know that Michael guy, but he knew already that he wouldn't like him.

“It's about an hour and a half to the ranch; how about we stop and get something to eat?” Austin asked.

“Oh. I don't want to be more of an inconvenience, than I have already been.” She glanced at her son.

Austin realized she was torn between wanting to get some lunch and not wanting to burden him even further. “If you don't mind, I'm a bit hungry”

Emily smiled. “Okay then, that would be great.”

When Austin pulled into a parking spot, Emily unbuckled Andrew and they went inside. Austin wanted to take that time to get to know Emily a little better. She seemed nice and was very beautiful. She was not too tall and not too short with her long black hair hanging down her back in a braid. She had a nice even tan that gave her a beautiful complexion. She couldn't be more than a size six.

They walked in and found a table to sit at in the back of the cafe. After a minute of looking at the menu, they ordered their food. Andrew got chicken nuggets and fries, Emily ordered a grilled chicken salad with ranch dressing, and Austin wanted a double cheeseburger with fries. The waitress said she would have their food in about fifteen minutes. Emily was really hungry since she had skipped breakfast to finish last minute packing.

Austin looked at Emily and said, “Tell me a little bit about yourself. We will be seeing a lot of each other around the ranch. I feel like I already know you since Arty talks about you all the time.” Emily smiled. “Okay, here is the short version. I have lived at the ranch since I was ten. My parents were killed in an accident and my Uncle Arty raised me with the help of Abigail. Abigail is like a mother to me. I love the ranch, and I couldn't wait to bring Andrew here. Now listen to me. You probably didn't really want to know my whole life story. You will learn fast that when I get to talking I don't always know when to shut up.”

Austin didn't mind at all. “No, it's fine. I have heard a lot about you from your uncle. He sure loves you; he talks about you all the time.”

Their food got there and they all ate. When they were finished eating, Emily took Andrew to the bathroom. It was going to be a long drive and she was trying to get him potty trained.

When they got out, Austin had already paid the bill. He said, “We should probably get going.” Emily agreed, “Yes, you are right, but let me pay for our lunch. I didn't mean for you to pay for me and Andrew.”

Austin said, “No, really, it's fine. Don't worry about it.”

They got Andrew all buckled in his car seat and started their long drive. Emily could remember so much as they drove down the road. She grew up here, and was so happy to be back. Emily sat there looking out of the truck window thinking. She knew Andrew would have a much better life here than he would have had in the city. The city had more crime than she wanted around her son. She would not even leave her house after dark alone anymore. It was hard to get completely over all of her fears, but Emily had been to therapy, and that had helped. The thing that always made it hard was the fact that she knew that the guy who raped her was walking free. She could have seen him in the store or a gas station and not even known it. It had been awhile since she had thought about it; the ride was so long and quiet that it left plenty of time to do nothing but think.

Emily must have had a sad look on her face because Austin said, “Are you okay? You just went somewhere for a minute. Do you want to talk about it?”

Emily looked over at him, not ready to tell him her whole sad story. She didn't know him yet and honestly she may never tell him. She said, “Oh, I'm sorry. I guess I am tired from the long flight.”

Austin felt like there was something she wasn't telling him, but he didn't want to pry. “We will be there soon. I know Arty can't wait to see you. Abigail has been cooking and baking all day.”

Emily laughed, “That sounds like Abigail. She has worked for my Uncle Arty for thirty years, and she practically raised me. I know they love each other. I have always felt that they were more than just friends and always wondered why they never got married, or at least admitted to being a couple.”

Austin said, “I don't know, some people are happier if they stay separate. For some reason some people don't like the idea of making it legal. My parents did nothing but fight when they were married, but when they got divorced everything was great. There was only one thing that I disagreed with that my mother did; she never let my father in on anything that was going on in my life. I got hurt one time and went to the hospital. I broke my arm, and she never even called my father. I think even if you don't live together the father has a right to know what is going on in his kid's life. I am sorry. You didn't need to hear my boring life story.”

Emily was glad to get her thoughts off her own sad story, “No, I loved hearing about you. Abigail talks about you all the time. I feel like I have known you forever.”

Emily couldn't help but think about how great Austin was. She wished she could be with him, but she didn't even know him. How could she feel that way about somebody that she only met moments ago? It just felt like she had known him her whole life. He was so easy to talk to. Emily'd never felt like that before, and she didn't even know if he had a wife or a girlfriend. He wasn't wearing a wedding ring, but a lot of guys didn't when they did ranch work; the ring could get caught on something. She had not even made it to the ranch yet and she was already thinking about a man. She knew that she better stop thinking like that. Austin was probably being nice and making small talk. He didn't even know her, how could she possibly think he would be interested in her?

Austin turned to Emily and said, “If you need anything, you let me know. I am at the ranch every day.”

Emily liked hearing that. “Thank you very much. I might just take you up on that.” The closer they got to the ranch the more excited Emily got. Driving down the road she saw different farmers with produce stands set up. Emily missed these in New York; she loved going up to a table and having a farmer that had been farming for many years tell a story about his crops. She felt like people cared around here. Back in New York nobody ever talked to anyone else; people never took a minute to say hello to one another. That was one of the main reasons Emily wanted to move back home with Andrew. She wanted him to have family, and learn how to talk to people, and respect people and things in life. She was afraid that he would miss out on those lessons living in the big city.

She didn't want Uncle Arty to be paying for everything that she wanted. It was going to be a while before her trust fund came in, and she wanted to make something of herself. Emily could now say that she had a very successful career, a beautiful baby, and a wonderful best friend. Emily did not regret her decision to move to New York. Yes, some bad things happened, but so did a lot of good things. Now it was time to go back home to her family. It wasn't much further to the ranch and she couldn't wait. She asked Austin, “How long have you worked for Uncle Arty?”

Austin said, “I have worked for him for a little over a year, but it feels like I have known them my whole life. They are so easy to talk to. I really love Arty and Abigail.”

Emily knew exactly how he felt. “Do you live on the ranch?”

Austin laughed at that. “I might as well since I am there all of the time, but I actually have a house about ten minutes down the road; it's actually a house that Arty built for me on his land. I owe a lot to him. He has been like a second father to me. Most of the time I am working at the ranch.”

They would be at the ranch in about twenty more minutes, and Emily could not wait. She was getting more excited by the minute. She turned around and started waking Andrew up. Andrew sat up in his seat and looked out the window. He could already see Uncle Arty's cows in the field. He sat in the back seat of the truck and made moo noises. That made Emily and Austin both laugh. Austin joined in making noises too. Emily smiled at the two of them. She couldn't believe how good he was with Andrew. Most men wouldn't take the time to make her son laugh. That was the difference in the big city people and the ranch folk. The country life was like another world. The people were different and they seemed nicer somehow. Emily was very happy to be getting there. This day seemed like it was never going to come. The flight was so long, but the truck ride had been pretty nice. Austin seemed really great, and she couldn't wait to spend some more time with him.

Finally Emily saw the long dirt road leading up to the beautiful two story ranch house. She couldn't wait to see Uncle Arty and Abigail. Dust was flying up from the road, and Andrew was laughing at all of the dust clouds. This was the first time he had been to the ranch. They finally reached the house; Abigail came running out, and Emily ran up and threw her arms around her.

Emily said, “I have missed you.” Austin was getting Andrew out of his car seat when Uncle Arty came running over to him. He picked him up and swung him around in a big circle. Andrew was laughing the whole time.

Uncle Arty was very excited. He said, “I have so much to show you; your new house that Austin built, the playground, and everything else.”

Emily said, “I have missed you so much Uncle Arty. I am glad to be home.”

Austin said, “I am going to give you guys some time alone. Just call me if you need me.”

Emily looked at him and said, “Thank you for the ride.”

Uncle Arty started showing Emily everything. He started with the huge playground he had built for Andrew. Andrew's eyes lit up. Next he showed her the house. Emily fell in love with it instantly; it was the most beautiful cabin that she had ever seen. It was perfect with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a huge kitchen because she loved to cook. Emily ran right over to Uncle Arty and gave him a big hug.

She said, “I love you, and I love this house. I have to tell Austin what a great job he did the next time I see him. Thank you very much for everything.”

Emily could not wait until tomorrow when all of her furniture and other things would be there. Tonight she and Andrew would stay at Uncle Arty's house.

The next day the big moving truck got there, and Emily was full of excitement. Abigail offered to watch Andrew for the day so that Emily could get some stuff done. When the truck finally left, there were boxes everywhere. It was going to take a long time to get this all put away. Just then Emily heard a knock at the door; it was Austin.

“Hi”, he said. “Uncle Arty thought you could use my help today.”

Emily looked at him and said, “Yes, that would be great, if you don't mind.”

Austin said, “I don't mind at all.” They didn't waste any time before they got started emptying boxes.

Emily was really beginning to like Austin even though she didn't even know him. She knew that she had just met him, but she couldn't stop thinking about him. He was extremely nice and he was spending his day helping her unpack and organize her house. He was probably only doing it because Uncle Arty asked him to. Why would this great looking and super nice guy want to get mixed up with a single mother? He probably wasn't interested in an instant family. Emily decided that it would be best if she just concentrated on the job of unpacking. After hours of working nonstop, Emily told Austin, “ Let's take a little break. I will make some iced tea for us.” Uncle Arty had gone shopping and fully stocked all of the cabinets, the freezer, and the refrigerator. Emily could not believe that he had gone to all of that trouble. They went out on the porch swing to take a break.

Emily asked Austin, “So, tell me a little bit about yourself; I told you my life story.”

Austin said, “Okay. I will go first then you have to tell me more about you. I am thirty-five and pretty much a loner. My parents have both passed away and I don't have any other family; Arty and Abigail are the only family I have. That is about it for my life story.”

Emily smiled and said, “You won't find better people than Uncle Arty and Abigail. I love them more than anyone in the world. Well except Andrew of course.”

Austin thought that it was kind of strange for her to say; she hadn't mentioned Michael. Every story that Arty and Abigail had told him about Emily started with Emily and Michael. All of the stories were happy ones. Now Emily was here and Michael wasn't. What was he missing? Things didn't add up for him. She said that Michael would not be here for two months. Austin couldn't help but wonder if maybe they weren't as happy as he thought they were. All Austin kept thinking was that he had to know. He would never think of coming between two happy people, but if they were not happy he wanted to be the one to make her happy.

Emily said, “Well, Are you ready to get back to unpacking these boxes. I need to go get Andrew soon.”

Austin snapped out of his thoughts and said, “Oh, yeah, let's get to it.” Emily knew that it would take a few days to get everything the way that she wanted it, but it was really starting to look good. She couldn't wait to show Abigail. They worked for a few more hours and then decided to take a break for the night; Emily could do the rest by herself. She couldn't wait any longer to show Andrew his room. Just as they got back to Uncle Arty's house, Abigail was standing at the door holding the cordless phone; Michael was on the phone she told Emily. Emily ran for the house. She had to tell Michael about the house. It had only been two days since she saw him, but she already missed him. He told her about his new boyfriend, Tracey. Emily laughed that his boyfriend had a girl's name; that made Michael laugh too. Then she had to tell him about Austin.

Finally Michael laughed and said, “You have got it bad for this guy. I have never heard you talk about any guy like this before.”

Emily laughed and said, “I better go before you spend all of your money on this call and then you can't come and see me. I love you and I will see you soon.”

Austin was sitting outside waiting on her to finish on the phone. He didn't know why, but he hated the fact that she was talking to another man. He could see the smile on her face as she came out of the house.

Austin asked Emily, “Do you want to do anymore tonight?”

Emily could see how tired Austin looked so she said, “No, I think I will call it a night, but I would like to thank you for all of your help. How about you come over tomorrow night and I will cook you dinner.”

Austin, very happy with that idea, said, “Yeah, sure that sounds good to me.” Emily was very happy. She couldn't wait until tomorrow.

Emily woke up early and got out of bed. Andrew was still sleeping when she started putting away more things. She was being very careful not to make too much noise so she didn't wake up Andrew. She was getting more excited about tonight every minute. Austin would be coming over for dinner. She had already decided that she would make a homemade beef stew, with a salad and bread. She worked on it all day. Emily realized that she hadn't heard from Austin at all today. She hoped that he hadn't forgotten. Then she started feeling a little bad. Why would he want to hang out with her and her son, when he could be out there finding a woman with less drama in her life?

Austin was getting ready to go to Emily's house for dinner. Then he realized that this was not a date. She was only being nice to him for helping her out. That made him a little sad. Austin finally got there and Emily told him to come right in. They sat down and had a very nice dinner. They talked for hours after Andrew was put to bed. Austin was so glad that Emily hadn't spent the night talking about her and Michael, but he was surprised that she hadn't mentioned him at least once. It was not yet midnight and Austin thought he should probably go. He didn't want to, but he knew that he should. “I should go. It is late and we have a lot to do on the ranch tomorrow.”

Emily said, “Okay. I understand. I hope to do this again sometime.”

A couple of weeks went by before Emily saw Austin again. It was time to start gathering the heard on the ranch. He was doing very long days. Finally she saw him coming out of Uncle Arty's house when she was about to go in.

She said, “Hi, I haven't seen much of you lately.”

Austin said, “Yeah, I'm sorry I haven't stopped by. I have been meaning to; it has just been very busy around here.”

Emily said, “Abigail is going to keep Andrew for a few hours so that I can check out the ranch. It has been so long since I have seen it. Would you like to go riding with me?”

Without taking a minute to think about it, Austin said, “Yes.” They went to the stables, put saddles on two horses and started out on their ride.

Emily couldn't wait to find out more about Austin, “Are you married? If that is too personal, then don't answer. I sometimes talk before I think.”

Austin said, “Don't worry about it. You can ask me anything. No, I am not married. I never found the right woman.” Austin looked at Emily. “What about you?”

Emily said, “I never found the right person either. It is just me and Andrew.”

Austin thought it was strange that she didn't follow that up with something like, now she had found the right person in Michael. He couldn't figure out why she said that it was only her and Andrew. They went riding some more. Emily said that she remembered a small creek with a spring running through it.

Austin said, “Yes, I know where that is, I will show you.”

When they got there, Emily was amazed at how beautiful it was. They got off their horses for a little while. Emily loved this ranch with all of her heart. It brought back many childhood memories. She used to come and play in this creek when she was younger. She would spend her summers outside been every day until dark. She loved riding horses and playing in the creek. Then she would help Abigail in the kitchen. She had so much fun there. That was what she wanted for Andrew. She wanted his life filled with great memories.

Austin looked up and saw some rain clouds coming in. He said, “We should get back before it rains on us.”

Emily said, “Yes, you’re right. I don't want to leave Andrew too long either.”

Austin hated the fact that it was going to rain. He was really enjoying spending time with Emily. He wanted to spend some more time with her so he asked, “Are you doing anything tomorrow?”

Emily said, “Well, actually I need to buy a truck. I hate having to borrow Uncle Arty's every time I need to go somewhere. If Uncle Arty is feeling up to it, then I am going to see if he wants to take me into town.” Austin just found a way to spend some more time with Emily.

He said, “Don't worry about it, I will take you. I will pick you up at 8:00 in the morning.” Emily was glad to hear that he wanted to take her. She really enjoyed spending time with him.

They got back to the stables and put the horses away. Austin said, “I had a really good time. We should do it again.”

Emily agreed with him and they walked to the house. Andrew came running. He had a big cookie in his hands and an even bigger smile on his face. Emily looked at Abigail with a smile. “I can see you two are having fun.”
Abigail said, “Andrew is a very good helper. He helps me make the cookies and then he helps me eat them.”

Emily took Andrew and headed to her house.

Austin said, “Hop in the truck; I will give you a ride.” Emily and Andrew got in the truck just as it started to rain; they made it just in the nick of time got. When they got to Emily's house she asked, “Would you like to stay for dinner?”
He said, “Yes, that would be great.”

Just then the phone rang and it was Michael. Emily talked for a while and then told him that she would call him back later, that Austin was there.

Austin said, “You didn't have to hang up on my account. I know that you miss him.”

Emily said, “Yes, I miss him, but he was calling to tell me that he will be here in two days. He finished things sooner than expected.”

Austin's heart sank to the floor. He had wished that Michael would never come back. He was slowly falling in love with Emily. They finished dinner and decided to call it a night since they would see each other in the morning.

Emily called Michael back after Austin left. “So Michael, how is your boyfriend Tracey doing?”

Michael laughed, “He is fine, but I am more interested in how your boyfriend Austin is doing.” Emily laughed and said, “I really wish he was my boyfriend, but I am taking things very slow.” Michael said, “Well, I better go; I will see you in two days.”

Guest Blogger: G. Bryan Smith

























Welcome G. Bryan Smith to the blog everyone. His book "Challenge To The Stars" is the first in a series of 5 books. You can get it for only 99 Cents right now.


Solstice Publishing
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Challenge-To-The-Stars-%252d%252d%252d-Print.html
Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Challenge-to-the-Stars-ebook/dp/B003JBIRTI/ref=sr_1_8_title_1_kin?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1323271119&sr=1-8
Where can we find you?

My five sci-fi novels are available for sale, in both paperpack and E-book formats on Solstice Publishing and Amazon, and in PDF format at Fictionwise, Coffee Time Romance, Manic Readers, and numerous other E-Book sites selected by Solstice.

My website is www.gbryansmith.webs.com/

What is the link for the best review you have had?

My first sci-fi novel, Challenge To The Stars, was reviewed in 2009 by Coffee Time Romance and received “four cups” which is very good for the strict Coffee Time Romance reviewers.

The link for the review is:
http://www.coffeetimeromance.com/BookReviews/Challengetothestars.html

What’s your favorite cover you have seen recently?

I am actually very pleased with the cover used on my fifth sci-fi novella, Amira, published early this year. I will give you the link on Amazon as follows:
http://www.amazon.com/Amira-G-Bryan-Smith/dp/1463742029/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1317104224&sr=1-3

Solstice Link:
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Amira%252d%252d%252d-PDF-EBOOK.html

4. If you can have anyone read your book and give you feedback who would it be and why?

Without doubt, master horror writer Stephen King, who is not only the best at horror but, in my view and that of many commentators, the greatest fiction writer of the 20th and 21st centuries so far. Some people would assign that role to Thomas Pynchon (Gravity’s Rainbow) but I disagree.

5. What is it that addicted you to your genre?

I grew up in the 1960’s with the original Star Trek and that fine, fine sci-fi anthology, the original black and white Outer Limits which best-selling horror writer Stephen King has called the best program of its kind to ever air on network television. I read every “Golden Age” novel of Science Fiction I could check out from the library or buy off the drugstore paperback racks: the novels of Robert Heinlein, Poul Anderson, Andre (Alice Mary) Norton, H. Beam Piper, Lester Del Rey, Robert Silverberg, Clifford Simak, and others.

6. Your favorite author.
Stephen King.

7. If you have a day job how do you balance everything.

I am a self-employed attorney. In short, you have to be efficient with your off-work time if you want to write. I have written five sci-fi novels from late 2007 through the end of 2010 and I could not have pulled it off without a disciplined writing schedule. For me, that means generally three hours per weekday evening (if I am not preparing for court the next day) and considerably more time than that over the weekends. Over the Christmas and New Year of 2007, when I happened to be alone, I wrote the first draft of my first sci-fi novel Challenge To The Stars.

8. What does your writing schedule look like.

Again, at least a three hour writing block on the weekday evenings, and more than that over the weekend when I am immersed in a project. Ernest Hemingway commented that most people cannot ever finish a novel because they bog in the middle. There is always time to refine after you complete the first draft but you have to finish that first draft. I took that to heart. In each of my five novels, I hit the ground running to finish the first draft. Once that is done, I typically edit and rewrite at least two to three more drafts before I deem it “final.”

How long does the whole process take?

It is said that Charles Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol in about 30 days. That may be do-able if you don’t work a day job as I do. Each of my five sci-fi novels took about four to six months from start to finish. I wrote Challenge to the Stars and Lizard World in late 2007- 2008. I wrote A Final Battle and The Master entity in 2009 and, finally, the novella (78 pages) Amira in August through December of 2010. Since Amira’s publication in early 2011, I have taken time off, having no further inspiration presently for the five novels/novellas which I call the “Colonel Kendrick Landry Space Adventure Series.” I don’t know for sure whether there will be a sixth Colonel Kendrick Landry story. Regardless, however, I do feel that there will be some writing project for me around the corner soon.


Have you ever came across a book you don’t know why a publisher published?

Yes, just go to the paperback stands and look at all the trade-published garbage by third-rate or worse writers. As they say, it is all in who you know.

Do you believe in self publishing?

Only if you have no alternative and you have plenty of money for publicity. “Legally Blonde” was self-published and made into a movie. The author spent a fortune on publicity. A better alternative for the average new author to break in exists in the “Indies,” or small independent publishers like Solstice. Large trade publishers are normally closed to new writers unless you have an established agent. In turn, most established agents will not take new writers as clients, a vicious cycle that feeds itself and bars most new writers from making the big time. A paradigm story is that Stephen King’s famous novel “Carrie,” made into a major motion picture, was rejected by the publishers some 33 times before one major trade publisher took a chance and picked it up. But the Indies at least give the new writer a chance for publication, some public exposure, avoidance of a gazillion reject slips, and a better choice than self-publishing.

Are you a believer in Karma?

The great cosmic “what comes around goes around.”
Frankly I don’t know. I do know that the world’s leading physicist, Stephen Hawkings, has recently expressed his view that there is no great beyond. In his view, life is generated randomly and spontaneously based on gravitational and other powerful but natural forces, and that is all there is to it. He compares the human brain to a computer hard drive and said, “I don’t believe in a heaven for worn-out hard drives.” Hawkings is a truly brilliant man, but then again, what does he know about it? That is his opinion—and you know what they say about opinions.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Guest Blogger Ben Hatch





Ben Hatch was born in London and grew up here and in Manchester and Buckinghamshire. His latest bestseller, Are We Nearly There Yet? 8000 Misguided Miles Round Britain in a Vauxhall Astra has been praised by John Cleese ("Ben Hatch makes me laugh"), although, unfortunately, not by his wife Dinah ("I do NOT drive like Mr Magoo, you bastard!") His first comic novel, The Lawnmower Celebrity, based loosely on his time as a chicken sandwich station monitor at Darlington McDonalds, was named one of the Radio 4's eight books of the year in 2000. The International Gooseberry about a hapless backpacker with a huge ungovernable toenail was published in 2001 and described as "hysterical and surprisingly sad" by the Daily Express. Ben Hatch was on the long-list of Granta's 2003 list of the most promising 20 young authors in the UK. In association with his wife Dinah, Ben has also written guidebooks for Frommer's. The guidebooks are a mixture of helpful and humorous tips on holidaying with children, quirky reviews of attractions, and incendiary arguments with his wife about, among other things, what is the best type of owl.




http://tinyurl.com/8286r94
If you think writing a guidebook is easy, think again! 'A family's 8,000 miles round Britain in a Vauxhall Astra' they were bored, broke, burned out and turning 40, so when Ben and Dinah saw the advert looking for a husband and wife team with young kids to write a guidebook about family travel around Britain, they jumped at the chance. With naive visions of staring moodily across Coniston Water and savouring Cornish pasties, they embark on a mad-cap five-month trip with daughter Phoebe, four, and son Charlie, two, embracing the freedom of the open road with a spirit of discovery and an industrial supply of baby wipes.

Reviews
'disastrous five-month trip around Britain with two small children. The object... to write a travel guide.' -- The Bookseller, 29th April 2011

'mad-cap five-month tour of Britain... it turns out not to be quite the odyssey they had expected.' -- The Bookseller, 13th May 2011

"Ben Hatch makes me laugh." -- John Cleese

"A voyage of pain, suffering, argument, baby wipes, discovery and utter delight...Never travel in a car with children without this book by your side." -- Sir Terry Wogan

"A funny, touching cross country jaunt that's as much about being a kid as it is about being a grown up." -- Danny Wallace

“A wonderful book - hilarious and moving, all at the same time. Highly recommended for anyone with a family, a car or a sense of humour." -- Sophie Kinsella

“This is about a living, loving, occasionally quarrelsome but clearly very happy marriage and it felt curiously life-affirming to read about it. It’s very warts and all, extremely funny, very human and very sad. If you liked One Day or just like good books in general, don’t let this one pass you by.” -- Jenny Colgan

"Funny, touching and so, so, true to life. The must read of the year!" -- Mike Gayle

"Refreshing, insightful, very funny." -- Joanne Harris

"A wonderful book. Terribly moving and so so funny." -- Richard Briers

"Brilliant. Outnumbered in a car. I absolutely loved it. Funny, honest and moving." -- Tim Brooke-Taylor

“Very funny and equally moving. Ben Hatch is one of my favourite writers.” -- Lisa Jewell

"If you're dreading a weekend car trip with small children this book can't fail t`o cheer you up." -- The Mirror

"Hatch humorously recounts his 8000 mile odyssey round Britain with his wife and two small children." -- The Times

Friday, November 4, 2011

Guest Blogger: Jacqueline Corcoran






1) When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?



My mother remembers me telling her that I wanted to be a writer when I was seven years old.


2) When did you write your first book and how old were you?



I started my first novel when I was seventeen. I finished my first novel when I was 20.

3) How many books have you written? Which one is your favorite?



15 Novels. A Month of Sundays, a mystery due out in October 2011 with Whimsical Productions, is my favorite.



I have also had published eleven textbooks.

4) What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?

I have to write when my children are at school, so ideally I’m able to get writing done then and after they go to bed.

5) What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I use lots of different ways to motivate myself – classes, writing craft books, sketching out scenes and then layering them. I write longhand first and then type a scene into the computer.

6) Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

They come from all different places – they could be a place like Dumbarton Oaks in D.C. (Time Witch), an experience (like working at the Austin Police Department), a class (I’m taking a Steampunk course right now).

7) What do you like to do when you’re not writing?



Exercise, reading, hiking

8) What do you think makes a good story?

I like mysteries, so a good story means that there is an unexpected ending.

9) Do you have any suggestions to help someone become a better writer?

It sounds simplistic, but you have to be willing to write – a lot – and take feedback.


Bio:
Jacqueline Corcoran was born to Irish and Welsh parents in England. Influenced by the Celtic tradition of storytelling, witches, trolls, and winged horses inhabit her middle-grade fantasy. She has lived in the U.S. for most of her life – in California, Michigan, Texas, and now in Alexandria, Virginia.


She holds a Ph.D. in social work and has been a member of the faculty at the Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond since 2000. Before that, she was on faculty at the University of Texas at Arlington School of Social Work for four years. She has published numerous professional academic articles and eleven books in her field. Although Jacqueline has been writing novels for over 28 years, Time Witch is her first published novel.



Find the book at:
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Time-Witch%252d%252d%252dPDF-EBOOK.html

http://www.amazon.com/Time-Witch-ebook/dp/B004PGN520/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1320415016&sr=1-1

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Guest blogger: JIm Baugh





Welcome Back Jim. I see that your book is only 99 Cents for the holidays. It would make a great Christmas book to load onto kindles.

Get "Hooked" for only $0.99


At Solstice Publishing
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Hooked-%252d%252d-PDF--------%2A%2A%2A%2A%2ASolstice-Publishing-Special%2A%2A%2A%2A%2A%2A.html


Or Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Hooked-ebook/dp/B00578KEUG/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1313521755&sr=1-1




Fictionwise
http://www.fictionwise.com/ebooks/b123968/Hooked/Jim-Baugh/?si=0



"HOOKED" is based on the true-life story of Virginia outdoor television producer Jim Baugh. Jim Baugh Outdoors TV is one of Americas most diverse and entertaining outdoor programs and has been in syndication since 1989.


"HOOKED" is a hilarious look behind the scene stories of filming a southern outdoor TV show. From the Chesapeake Bay to Key West these on location excursions will make your sides hurt with laughter. A cast of sea faring characters full of color and humor. From the docks in Gloucester Virginia to the Atlantic Ocean and a boat load of jolly swashbuckling Pirates. The stories and characters in "HOOKED" are timeless and span a period of over forty years.


In contrast, "HOOKED" also explores the solemn drama of dealing with divorce, death, and mental illness.


The story also delves into the totally crazy insane world of mid-life on-line computer dating. This is a hilarious look at dating in the computer world after 25 years of solid marriage. These "Dating" stories are contemporary, racy, scary, cheerful, timeless, and based on true events. Anyone who is old enough to date will soon relate to "HOOKED" as the comical reference for dating in the new millennium.

This adult romantic comedy story also relates to the power and testament of faith.


50 Years of an exciting action packed extremely charismatic colorfull life and career, packed into 28 chapters . It is a fast ride for sure.


Bio: Jim Baugh has been producing National and Regional television shows for 25 years. Programs include: Jim Baugh Outdoors TV (220 episodes), Ski East, Classic Fishing. Fishing Virginia and, RV Times.


Jim Baugh has written over 300 columns for numerous magazines during the last 20 years including: Motor boating Magazine, Fishing Smart, The Chesapeake Angler, The Sportsman Magazine and Travel Virginia Magazine.


Stop by the bar to hang out with Jim!!!

http://hookedthebook.wordpress.com/comments-blog/

Monday, October 31, 2011

New Twitter? Here's Some Helpful Tips!!!


50% of proceeds go to asthma & allergy foundation of america "A Surprise For Christmas" http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00570IBZO/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_-nAQob0KRZGYS Only 99 cents!!!!


New To Twitter? Don't know where to start? Here's some helpful tips to get you started. Here is a top 5 that I hope helps.

1. Follow People that have the same interests as you so you have things to talk about with each other.

2. Follow back followers that follow you. Nobody wants to follow a person that thinks they are too good to follow back and they will most likely unfollow you.

3. Get involved in a conversation. If somebody posts what they are cooking for dinner and you like that reply to it "That sounds good" or "Yum" Anything to get involved.

4. Don't only talk about your book. Post that you have one and then post about it and links but also post other things. We don't need to see 50 post in one day about your book. That will most likely make somebody not want to buy it.

5. Don't DM spam about things. That is going to make your follower angry and they will unfollow you.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Guest Blogger: Regina Duke

Welcome Regina Duke!



















Lizzie, thanks for having me! With Halloween upon us, many are looking forward to a few hours of delicious but safe scary time. Some go to movies. Others to haunted houses. And still others, like myself, withdraw into a world of fiction.

Can a writer of romantic comedy, suspense, and dogs write horror stories as well?
Oh, yes. Bwaaa-haa-haa-haa! Okay, that was corny. But over the years I learned that stories come to me in different genres and I can’t cram them into a single formula or rework them to fit a solitary line. That’s why I went indie. I wanted to share my stories, but I wanted to do it my way.

Over the years I have written eight novels. The first five were not ready for prime time. But writing can improve with effort, so I just kept working at it. Then a few years ago, I wrote North Rim Delight, a romantic suspense novel. What a surprise! I could have fun and tell a suspenseful story in the real world! Well, almost real. It’s fiction, after all.

I chose to begin my indie journey with North Rim Delight. Terri Baker is dealing with the loss of her beloved German shepherd and trying to shake off an abusive ex-boyfriend by taking a vacation to the Grand Canyon. Bounty hunter Russ Camino is tailing a hit man with a tragic connection to his family’s past. When he lays eyes on Terri, he falls head over heels in love, but refuses to admit it. Then he realizes that the hit man is following Terri, and he knows he must protect her at all costs.

I had such a good time writing about Terri and Russ, my dog-loving characters, and their budding romance that I followed up with a novella about their relationship three months later.

Because these characters live and breathe for me, I wanted to explore what happens after they returned from the Canyon. That’s why I wrote The Woof in the Wedding Plans. It’s a novella that catches up with them as they deal with a new German Shepherd, a super-rich and overly involved future father-in-law, and the wedding planner from hell. It’s full of dogs, danger, laughs, and of course a happy ending.

I hope you enjoy reading about them as much as I enjoy writing them!

As for my soft science fiction and quiet horror, my stories have more affection and relationship in them than one usually expects in those genres. Hence, “soft” science fiction. The only definition of that sub genre I ever found said it deals with social issues instead of tech issues, and that is certainly true about my SF. It’s all about how people deal with unusual situations. My horror stories are psychological, not gory. I have published six of them in Trickster and Other Stories. With Halloween coming up, it seemed like the right thing to do. So if you are one of those who look for your thrills in the pages of a book, this collection is for you.

When I’m not writing, I’m training and showing my dogs. I have loved many breeds over the years, but my current pack consists of two papillons (Buster and Darby) and a tiny rescued Shetland sheepdog (Gracie). I write about my dogs under the name Linda White. My training experience and show entries are under that name. Loving the Sensitive Dog is the story of my first papillon, Buster the Wonder Dog. He’s still alive and well and earning titles.

If all goes well, I’ll have two more titles coming out before the end of the year. One is a romantic comedy with loads of mystery and laughs and, of course, dogs. The other is about my second papillon. So I am writing like crazy!

Because I have two names, I also have two websites.

www.reginaduke.com www.lindalouwrites.com

North Rim Delight http://www.amzn.com/B0050Q57SY

The Woof in the Wedding Plans (novella) http://www.amzn.com/B005JSPBV6

Regina Duke & Linda White’s Trickster and Other Stories http://www.amzn.com/B005OKJMGYLinda

White’s Loving the Sensitive Dog, http://www.amzn.com/B0055KXLJWMy books can also be found on Barnes&Noble for the Nook.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Guest Blogger: Michelle Franklin

A Halloween Story from Frewyn: A Festive Return


Seamhair (Sheh-mir) is Frewyn Halloween. It's the day that Frewyn honours family and heroes passed. In honour of halloween at the end of the month, here is a moment from book 10 that describes the Frewyn holiday and some of its customs.






A Festive Return


Being in Gallei for the chief of the season meant that the royal party had missed the harvest festivities entirely. The children had enjoyed the apple picking, squash gathering, games and hay rides, but business in the west of the Southern Continent had kept all of the adults from joining their high revel. Their return, however, saw the beginning of Seamhair, the last day of autumn on the Frewyn calendar, celebrated with guising, feasting and merriment in honour of those who had come before and passed on, bringing with it usual accoutrements of sweets and chocolate and all the requisite tooth aches and sore stomach such a dulcet commemoration could merit. The party returned to the Frewyn capital to discover Diras in a glow of festive spirits: decorations of gauze ghosts and green ghouls lined the gables of every home; amber candles were lit in the square in honour of those who had no memorial belonging to them; the bells from the church rang out in subdued tones, calling those who wished to honour parents and children long past with sermon and song; the faint scent of nutmeg from fresh apple pies cooling on open sill and the aroma of mulling spices from steaming cider carts being wheeled round the capital hung languidly in the air; children wearing various costumes of Frewyn’s legends and heroes skipped from door to door and made wide, toothless smiles at old women in exchange for treats, abiding the occasional cheek pinches and spittling lips that the crones of Frewyn were disposed to dispense. It was a prospect of Frewyn’s gaiety that the party triumphed in seeing, so much that when they arrived at the capital gate, they were forced to stop and remark the striking splendor that such a scene could provide. Gallei had shown them its agonies, and here Frewyn would show them its glories.


Alasdair felt his breath grow full. His chest swelled, and he exhaled with a billowing condensation, remarking the festivity in the capital with glistening eyes. His happiness at seeing his people in so revelrous a state was more sentiment than his speech could express. He turned to the commander with the parted lips of impending words, but nothing came beyond a sigh and a thankful nod. He requested that the party should move forward; he was anxious to see his queen and his son and therefore determined that the others were anxious to see their families likewise, but the moment Alasdair was discerned along the main road to the castle, drawing attention by the various soldiers beginning to peel away from the ranks and return to their homes, there was an end to the king’s designs of a quick and peaceful return. Ovation came from the square, entreaties for their king poured in from every quarter, and soon the party was surrounded by the capital’s denizens coming to the king to congratulate and wish him joy. Alasdair must stop; he apologized for the delay, but a few moments more where the greeting and honouring of his people was concerned would be of little consequence to being detained. Bows and curtsies were given, ‘Your Majesties’ addressed him, and hopeful eyes and hands outstretched bearing tribute and gifts for their king were borne. Alasdair was in such a beholden and appreciative humour that he had forbearance for every command of his attention: he said hello to the children skittering about his feet demanding that he judge their costumes, he waved to the young women who were ever desirous of seeing their handsome young monarch, he endured every pat on the cheek that the wives and old women could accord, and he even nodded to the Reverend Mother who emerged from her place in the Church to bless the king’s safe return. Their attention and their exuberance at seeing him and greeting his party in such a manner was all Alasdair’s exultation, and the instant he turned from their society to recommence his arrival to the castle, he wiped a tear from his eye and reclaimed his place at the head of the procession with a bowed head and grateful smile.


“All gallantry in battle and in court,” said the commander in an audible murmur, “but the moment that you’re attacked with affection from your subjects, you are all sensibility.” She smirked and looked away but felt Alasdair returning with a powerful glare.


“What?” Alasdair rejoined, and then sharply added, “I’m not crying.” He endeavoured to hide a sniffle and only succeeded in making the commander laugh when he failed to conceal his sentiment. “I know I am king, Boudicca, but I think I’m allowed to show some emotion.”


“Of course you are, Alasdair. Besides, we all know that the King of Frewyn never weeps.” She made an arch look. “Especially when his wife and son are waiting at the castle gate to greet him.”


Alasdair suddenly looked ahead to find Carrigh and Dorrin walking hand in hand toward the iron sweep gate from the castle peristyle. His eyes welled once more, a hundred feelings rushing upon him, the most prevalent of which relief for seeing them well, and where his heart could govern him, his feet would answer. He broke away from the party, hastening toward them, his smile broadening with every step, and when he finally reached the edge of the gate, he assailed them with the most fervent and fondest of kisses, taking his son up into one arm and ardently embracing his wife with the other. “I am so very glad to see you,” he said in a voice oppressed by tight throat. All his love and all his reprieve prevailed him at once, and in seeing his wife’s blue eyes, golden curls, and elated countenance beside his son’s rosy complexion and smiling face, he was compelled to lean into his wife’s nape and shed a few open tears, saying his praises to the Gods that he was come home and that they were within the auspices of his most devoted embrace.












Find Michelle Here:
Twitter: @MrsDenAsaan
Site: thehaanta.blogspot.com








Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Michelle-Franklin/e/B004XK55GC/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1











Saturday, October 15, 2011

Award Winning "A Surprise For Christmas"



*Previously titled "Somebody Else's Child"

Samantha wasn’t expecting what she got for Christmas this year. Her doorbell rang and there sitting on her porch was a baby in a basket. This changes her life for the good. But then something happens. The baby’s father comes for his child. How can Samantha convince him that she is the best thing for the child?

4th Place Winner
Love is In The Air contest hosted by Reader Jack

Friday, October 14, 2011

Funny Story!!!!

I had to share my funny story with you all.


I had somebody tell me tonight that if I donated money to their church that God would reward me financially.


I looked at them and said. "I'm sorry but my faith tells me that God doesn't charge you for his love and would never ask me to pay him cash for that love. I don't think your church is right for me."

They just looked at me and turned and left.

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Surprise For Christmas




Only 99 Cents
http://www.amazon.com/A-Surprise-For-Christmas-ebook/dp/B00570IBZO/ref=sr_1_11?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1318258100&sr=1-11


Samantha wasn’t expecting what she got for Christmas this year. Her doorbell rang and there sitting on her porch was a baby in a basket. This changes her life for the good. But then something happens. The baby’s father comes for his child. How can Samantha convince him that she is the best thing for the child?

Reviews:
5.0 out of 5 stars a surrise for christmas, September 26, 2011
By jbarr - See all my reviewsThis review is from: A Surprise For Christmas (Kindle Edition)
a surprise for christmas by lizzy stevens
and what a surprise it is. wow what every single woman dreams of finding,
a baby on the doorstep to raise as your own. kinda reminded me of the baby in a basket
among the grassy reeds-a religious story.

this story a year later has upheaval as the father comes to find his daughter-not knowing the mother was pregnant.

magic happens and they fall in love to make it a memorable Christmas for them all.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Guest Blogger R.H. Russell





Tell us a little about Venture Untamed, what inspired you to write it?
Venture Untamed is a fantasy, in that it takes place in another world— though there is no magic. It’s the story of Venture Delving, a bonded servant, a member of the lowest class in the world. Already fatherless, when he loses his mother, he veers from energetic to out of control. But when Venture's rage saves the life of Jade, his best friend and his master's daughter, Venture finds himself in the last place he ever expected—a center renowned for training young boys to be professional fighters. When Venture realizes he's fallen in love with Jade, he knows that the only way he'll ever have her, the only way he'll ever be free to live the life he's meant to live, is to defy convention, common sense, the trust of those he cares about most—and sometimes the law—and become the best fighter in the world, the Champion of All Richland. Venture must battle not only rival fighters, but the ghosts of his past and the members of a privileged warrior class who stand between him and his dream. I’ve been involved in combat sports since I was a teen and my experience with fighters of all sorts fueled this story. The world of fighters is truly fascinating, and I wanted to share it with readers in a unique way—a way anyone could identify with, because I truly believe there’s a fighter in all of us.


Do you have a favorite character you have written?

My favorite character is Venture, of course! But Jade tends to surprise me more. And I sympathize with Venture’s older brother, Justice—the practical one who fears for Venture’s safety. He’s more like me than I realized at first, and I always want to defend him.

3. What are you currently working on?
Currently I’m working on the second of the Venture books, Venture Unleashed. It’s now in production, and will be available before the holidays 2011.

4. How long have you been writing? What influenced you to start?
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do. I was bored a lot as a kid, so I told myself stories.


How do your family/friends feel about your writing?
My family and friends are amazing. They’ve supported me every step of the way.

Where do you hope to be in 5 years?
In five years, I hope to have many books in my Venture series out in the world, and lots of happy readers.

Do you have any advice for new or aspiring author?
My advice for new authors is to live a full life. It will enrich your writing and get you through the tough times in your writing life. As an introvert, I learned this the hard (and slow) way. It was a painful, lonely lesson. Now when I hear people say, “Writing is my life,” I cringe. Pour your heart and soul into your writing, yes, but if writing truly IS your life, you’re in trouble. This is a pitfall for all driven people. In Venture’s story, I try to show how he has a passion that’s of greatest importance to him, and he pours himself into his training, yet he has a full life. I enjoyed bringing out all the aspects of who he is—his family relationships, his dreams for a future with Jade, his friendships. Take time away from writing to be alive, and your work will come alive.

What is your favorite book? (one that you have read) and why?
Choosing a favorite book is impossible! I love so many of them. But my favorite recent read is Falling Hard, a Journey into the World of Judo, by Mark Law. Part memoir, part history of judo, it’s fast-paced, honest, funny, and fascinating. I loved reading about this fifty-something Brit’s experience joining the world of judo, and realizing how similar it was to my own experience, though I was an American teenager when I started out.

On the fun side, what is your favorite television show and why?
I don’t watch much TV. Getting rid of cable five years ago was the best thing that ever happened to my family, and to my writing.

Where can readers find you ?
Readers can find me at http://www.theventurebooks.com, http://


http://www.facebook.com/TheVentureBooks
or subscribe to my newsletter at http://eepurl.com/fX-Kn.

Fellow writers can visit my writing blog, http://www.wordwrestlerwrites.wordpress.com.

Or follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/Word_Wrestler

SHORT BLURB:
Venture Delving, an out of control bonded servant boy, finds himself in the last place he ever expected—a center renowned for training boys to be professional fighters. He must battle not only rival fighters, but the ghosts of his past and the members of a privileged warrior class who stand between him and his dream—to become a Champion fighter and to marry Jade, his master's daughter. Approximately 60,000 words. Ages thirteen and up.


LONG BLURB:
Venture Delving is a bonded servant, a member of the lowest class in the world. Already fatherless, when he loses his mother, he veers from energetic to out of control. But when Venture's rage saves the life of Jade, his best friend and his master's daughter, Venture finds himself in the last place he ever expected—a center renowned for training young boys to be professional fighters. When Venture realizes he's fallen in love with Jade, he knows that the only way he'll ever have her, the only way he'll ever be free to live the life he's meant to live, is to defy convention, common sense, the trust of those he cares about most—and sometimes the law—and become the best fighter in the world, the Champion of All Richland. Venture must battle not only rival fighters, but the ghosts of his past and the members of a privileged warrior class who stand between him and his dream. Book one of the Venture series. Approximately 60,000 words. Ages thirteen and up.

BUY LINKS:
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005PA95S8
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B005PA95S8
Barnesandnoble.com: http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Venture-Untamed/RH-Russell/e/2940013414099
Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/91117

Kids say the funniest things!!!!

My niece will be 4 next month.

I asked her what she wanted for her birthday.

She got all excited and said "I want a disney princess chair".

I said Oh wow that sounds really good. Where do I find one of those?

She looked at me all serious and said. "You get it from Santa."


I, not knowing what to say at that point, said I have his phone number I'll give him a call and see if I can get one from him LOL.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Secrets Of Snow Hollow only 99 Cents on amazon




Only 99 Cents!!!!
http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Of-Snow-Hollow-ebook/dp/B003Y3BP0Y/ref=sr_1_2_title_0_main?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1317676415&sr=1-2
The Witches Of Snow Hollow Book One: Jenna's Story

Jenna is six when her parents die in a tragic car crash leaving her and her two sisters orphans. With no one to care for them they move in with their grandmother in the town of Snow Hollow where more than just a normal life awaits them. Jenna soon discovers that she is not like other girls, a fact she's felt since birth. When her grandmother finally reveals her secret Jenna is blown away by not only the fact that she's a witch, but that she is THE witch. The Ultimate One who controls the powers of the coven.




After her grandmother's death when she turned 26 Jenna finds out another secret. She is the only one left to protect her home from the evil demons wanting to steal her world away from her.




When Jenna meets Jacob, her sexy warlock protector, the sparks fly from day one. She is determined to protect her family her way, but will it be enough? She will need Jacob, but will their passion for one another be enough to save their world as they know it and keep her sisters safe?



The Witches of Snow Hollow Book Two: Jamie's Story

The Story of the Addison witches continue in "The Witches Of Snow Hollow Book Two Jamie's Story"



Jamie Addison returns to Snow Hollow to ask her sister, Jenna, for her blessing to marry the man she loves, Danny. When she gets there she finds out that she has been under a love spell the entire time and that Danny has also put a bind on her powers. Danny has been after the Addison house all along and plans to kill the sisters.




Jenna and her husband ,Jacob, vow to protect her. Jacob calls his cousin, Drake, over to protect her while the four of them plan their attack on Danny. The only way for Jamie to get her powers back is for them to kill the demon that put the spell on her.




Drake never leaves Jamie's side while it's his job to protect her. In the process of protecting her he falls in love with her. Jamie is torn between if her feelings for him are true of if it is a side effect of the spell that has been put on her.




Will Jamie's family be able to protect her or will the demon win?



The Witches Of Snow Hollow Book Three: Jackie's Story

The story of the Addison witches continues with Jackie Addison. Jackie falls in love with a vampire named Ricky and plans to take him to Snow Hollow to help fight the long awaited lunar eclipse battle. She knows that she has to get the blessing of her sister Jenna before the relationship can blossom. This is going to be a very difficult task to compete since her sister Jamie fell in love with a demon who tried to kill her. How was Jackie going to convince Jenna that Ricky was different. She knew he loved her for real and would never hurt her.

Ricky may be a vampire but he is different. He fights demons night after night side by side with Jackie. He fights demons with her but can he help protect the Addison house during the most important battle of their year? Can he win Jenna's trust so that he can be with Jackie? Will the Addison witches win this fight?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What is the best promotional thing you have done?

What is the best promotional thing you have done to promote your books.

I am on twitter, facebook, goodreads, linkedin etc. I like the social networking. It's fun and free LOL. You meet a lot of new people on these sites.



These places have promotional services that you can purchase to help promote your books too.

Manic Readers
Coffeetime Romance
Long and Short Reviews

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Ever Wonder How one review site can give you a 5 and another will give you a 2?

Hi Everyone,

Ever wonder how review sites can be so different. One will love your book and give it a 5 star review while another will hate it so much that they will give you a 2 and say it wasn't even worth that LOL.

Reviewers can be an author's best friend and we truly appreciate your honesty.

On the other hand for those reviewers that want to take out their frustrations of their bad day on an author's hard work really isn't fair to the author.

All we ask for is an honest review.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

What is the most embarrassing thing that your kid has ever done in public?

It's funny story time!!! What is the most embarrassing thing that your kid has done in public? Share your story in the comment box and win a free copy of

"Brandon's Secret" Every post gets a free book.

Leave your email address in the post so I can email you your free book or email me at witchesofsnowhollow@gmail.com the email address you want me to send your book to.



Funny Email about kids that I just got:


Children Are Quick
____________________________________

TEACHER: Why are you late?
STUDENT: Class started before I got here.
--------------------------------------------------------
TEACHER: Maria, go to the map and find North America ..
MARIA: Here it is.
TEACHER: Correct. Now class, who discovered America ?
CLASS: Maria.
____________________________________
TEACHER: John, why are you doing your math multiplication on the floor?
JOHN: You told me to do it without using tables.
__________________________________________
TEACHER: Glenn, how do you spell 'crocodile?'
GLENN: K-R-O-K-O-D-I-A-L'
TEACHER: No, that's wrong
GLENN: Maybe it is wrong, but you asked me how I spell it.
(I Love this child)
____________________________________________
TEACHER: Donald, what is the chemical formula for water?
DONALD: H I J K L M N O.
TEACHER: What are you talking about?
DONALD: Yesterday you said it's H to O.
__________________________________
TEACHER: Winnie, name one important thing we have today that we didn't have ten years ago.
WINNIE: Me!
__________________________________________
TEACHER: Glen, why do you always get so dirty?
GLEN: Well, I'm a lot closer to the ground than you are.
_______________________________________
TEACHER: Millie, give me a sentence starting with ' I. '
MILLIE: I is..
TEACHER: No, Millie..... Always say, 'I am.'
MILLIE: All right... 'I am the ninth letter of the alphabet.'
________________________________
TEACHER: George Washington not only chopped down his father's cherry tree, but also admitted it. Now, Louie, do you know why his father didn't punish him?
LOUIS: Because George still had the axe in his hand.....
______________________________________
TEACHER: Now, Simon , tell me frankly, do you say prayers before eating?
SIMON: No sir, I don't have to, my Mom is a good cook.
______________________________
TEACHER: Clyde , your composition on 'My Dog' is exactly the same as your brother's.. Did you copy his?
CLYDE : No, sir. It's the same dog.

(I want to adopt this kid!!!)
___________________________________
TEACHER: Harold, what do you call a person who keeps on talking when people are no longer interested?
HAROLD: A teacher
__________________________________
PASS IT AROUND AND MAKE SOMEONE LAUGH!
LAUGHTER IS THE SOUL'S MEDICINE!!


Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"Brandon's Secret" now available on Amazon!!!



http://www.amazon.com/Brandons-Secret-ebook/dp/B005OAW2KW/ref=sr_1_12?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1316564407&sr=1-12


Rochelle moves to the beach to get her life back on track after her mother dies in a car accident. Shortly after she arrives she meets tall, dark and sexy Brandon. Night after night he shows up at her beach house and they have a great time together, but he never comes around during the day. Where does he go all day? He says that he is at work all day , but Rochelle decides to do a little digging around and unveils more than she wants to. What secret is Brandon keeping? “Brandon’s Secret” is a short story packed with romance, mystery, and secrets.


5 Star Customer Review:
5.0 out of 5 stars heartwarming, September 20, 2011

By EJ Harrigan - See all my reviewsThis review is from: Brandon's Secret (Kindle Edition)

A lovely story with complex characters well drawn. Beautiful evocative settings combine to create a sense of mystery and romance. A concise writing style makes this a very easy read and a story one wishes there was more of. Certainly would make me read more from this author.

5 Things you don't know about E.J. Harrigan

5 Things you don't know about E.J. Harrigan

1. My dog is called Murphy

2. I live on the edge of the Atlantic as far west in Europe as you can go without being in the US.

3. I play football (soccer)

4 I've written a screenplay about a prepubescent ostrich

5 I cycle a thirty two year old racing bike







In a world where religion seems to grow increasingly irrelevant, Where The Dead Go wrestles with the timeless question, what happens after death and offers an alternative solution.



Dave McMurty is an everyman who finds himself the victim of a mindless murder. Little does he know he is not the only victim. He awakens in the hereafter to find himself at the centre of a timeless conflict between good and evil. In a strange world where the very essence of himself is the thing he must protect he must forge friendships and find hidden strengths within to try to become the man in death he could never be in life.


http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Where-the-Dead-Go%252d%252dPDF-EBOOK.html

Monday, September 19, 2011

"Brandon's Secret" is available at Solstice Publishing




Available at Solstice Publishing now and Coming soon at Amazon:
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Brandon%27s-Secret-%252d%252d-PDF-EBOOK.html


Rochelle moves to the beach to get her life back on track after her mother dies in a car accident. Shortly after she arrives she meets tall, dark and sexy Brandon. Night after night he shows up at her beach house and they have a great time together, but he never comes around during the day. Where does he go all day? He says that he is at work all day , but Rochelle decides to do a little digging around and unveils more than she wants to. What secret is Brandon keeping? “Brandon’s Secret” is a short story packed with romance, mystery, and secrets.

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Holidays Are Coming! What's your favorite recipe?

Hi Everyone,

The Holidays are coming. Do you have a favorite recipe you would like to share with us all?

Post your recipes in the comment box.


Here's one that I like to do on the holidays that taste great and is 100% sugar free so it works great if you have diabetics in the family.


(This is just a method. You can use any flavors you like)


Yogurt Pie

Ingredients:
2 small containers of sugar free strawberry yogurt (any brand)
1 container of Sugar FREE Coolwhip
1 package of sugar free jello
1 graham cracker pie shell

How to make:
take 1/4 cup of water put in a bowl. Add  the package of jello to that and stir.
Add your yogurt and cool whip to that and stir in. When it's all mixed together put it in the pie shell and then in the refridgerator to harden. It won't take long. Maybe 30 minutes - an hour


Variations:
You can use regular yogurt instead of sugar free or you can use fat free instead of sugar free.

You can use any flavors that you want. You can mix an match. I like to take blueberry yogurt and strawberry jello. That one taste really good.

You can use any brand of ingredients and if you have extra time you can make the graham cracker shell by hand by crushing up the graham crackers yourself. I like to tkae the little extra help from the store and just buy the pre- made shell LOL.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Thoughts On Bad Reviews

What makes people leave negative reviews? Was the book they read that terrible that they have to take the time to go in and leave a horrible review?

One step further: What makes them so bitter that they will leave a horrible review for a book that is free LOL.


Then we have my favorites. The ones where they seem to forget that what they are reading is fiction LOL. Meaning --- Not Real

I've had bad reviews left because they didn't like the bad guy in the story. Or they didn't like the way my character handled something bad in her life. The reviewer has said that they have been though that situation and they handled it differently so my book got a bad review because my character didn't handle herself the way the reader would have.

It's funny sometimes to read the negative ones.

I got one recently that was bad because my characters doctor took longer than what the readers real life doctor took with her in the same situation.

Sometimes I think readers get so involved in the story that they forget that it's fiction and the characters are not real.


What is your funniest negative review? or The one that made you the madest when you read it?

Friday, September 9, 2011

How to promote your book for FREE

Hello Everyone,

Today I'm going to blog about all the free stuff you can do to promote your books. I hope that at least one of these ideas helps somebody out.


1. Set up a website. You can do this completely free at www.webs.com or www.weebly.com and if you want it to be a true dot com you can go to www.godaddy.com or www.names.com and I'm sure there are others and pay for your domain name for the year. It will cost less than $12 and then you can go back to the free site and use your own domain. You have no fees at all and you have a new website.


2. www.facebook.com
Set up a facebook page and friend everyone and tell everyone about your page. Use your page to promote your book. Don't just open the page but actually go there and post on it daily.

3. www.twitter.com
Follow people and ask them to follow you. Tweet and retweet other people's tweets. Join in on the fun.

4. www.myspace.com
Same thing here. Friend people and ask them to friend you.

5. www.manicreaders.com has free pages

6. www.linkedin.com another social networking site.

7. Start a blog. There are a few different free ones. You can try www.blogspot.com or www.wordpress.com either one are free.

8. Join yahoo groups. Be sure to follow their posting rules.

9. www.goodreads.com is another really good place to promote you book.

10. Get reviews for your book. The more reviews and good ratings the better. You can take that review and then tell all the above places. Out of every good review you get several promo opps out of it.


This list should get you started but the ideas are endless in marketing. I hope at least one of these things helped somebody out.

Lizzy

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Guest Blogger: Angela Burke




Raya Walden doesn't believe in ghosts...just the thought sends shivers up her spine. But as she falls in love with Jack Castille during a summer job at the rustic Hideaway Lodge, a resort nestled in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, Raya discovers she has an undisclosed paranormal talent. A talent that she doesn't want. Yet it is this gift that will ultimately save her life...

Lucidity is a story about the secrets of the unknown, the essence of the spirit and the endurance of love...will you believe?

Available at:
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/Lucidity%252d%252dPDF-EBOOK.html

or

http://www.amazon.com/Lucidity-ebook/dp/B004RVS4CO/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1315320084&sr=1-1

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Guest Blogger: Grace Elliot








Hi!
My name is Grace Elliot and I write historical romance. I started writing as an antidote to the stresses of the modern world, and then found my second home in the regency. My debut novel, ‘A Dead Man’s Debt’ is a story of duty, blackmail and unexpected love and aims to be the sort of page-turning, un-put-down-able book I love to read.

But enough about me – without further ado, let’s meet our hero, the darkly, brooding Lord Ranulf Charing.

Ah the delicious Lord Ranulf Charing (….short pause to fan myself) so dangerous and yet so misunderstood! Our first encounter with Lord Ranulf finds him hiding in his lair at his club. Arrogant, dissolute and aloof, Lord Ranulf appears the archetypal bad boy, but as the story progresses Ranulf is revealed a man ill at ease with himself. He is a complex man, who learnt as a child to deny his emotions, and worlds collide when his values are challenged by the rebellious Miss Celeste Armitage.

I hope readers will come to love Ranulf, not just for his devastating good looks, (although no harm in that, wink), but his touching affection for his stallion Fable, his fear of love and secret genius as an artist. But with the future of the Charing’s resting on Ranulf’s shoulders can he really be true to himself and which will he chose? Family duty or his unexpected love for his soul mate, Celeste Armitage?

(Tomorrow ( 9-3-11) I will be posting about our heroine, the rebellious Celeste Armitage, on the Solstice blog http://solsticepublishing.wordpress.com/)

So, if you want to forget your worries for a little while, why not read ‘A Dead Man’s Debt’ (just $2.99)

FOR A CHANCE TO WIN A PDF COPY – PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT.

Here’s what reviewers have said:
“Historical romance at its best.” Once Upon A Chapter 5/5
“Totally engrossing…sensual and evocative writing.” Fiction Books. 5/5
“Breathtaking sensuality…page turning drama…a wonderful talent.” The Romance Reviews. 5/5


To find out more please visit:
http://graceelliot-author.blogspot.com (my blog is updated twice a week and is a blend of historical trivia, romance and cats!)
or
www.wix.com/graceelliot/grace-elliot.


“A Dead Man’s Debt” is available from:
Solstice publishing.
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/A-Dead-Man%27s-Debt-%252d%252d%252d-PDF.html

Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/A-Dead-Mans-Debt-ebook/dp/B0046REKBS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=A7B2F8DUJ88VZ&s=books&qid=1293833253&sr=1-1

Smashwords.
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/26527

Fictionwise
http://www.fictionwise.com/ebooks/b115169/A-Dead-Mans-Debt/Grace-Elliot/?si=0


Author Bio.

Grace Elliot leads a double life as a veterinarian by day and author of historical romance by night. Grace lives near London and is addicted to cats, acting as housekeeping staff to five mischievous moggies.
Grace believes intelligent people need romantic fiction in their lives as an antidote to the modern world and as an avid reader of historicals she turned to writing as a release from the emotionally draining side of veterinary work. Her debut novel ‘A Dead Man’s Debt’ is a story of blackmail, duty and unexpected love.
Now available from most eBook stores including Amazon, price $2.99.

To find out more visit http://graceelliot-author.blogspot.com


‘A Dead Man’s Debt’ by Grace Elliot.
Celeste Armitage has a plan…and that plan doesn’t include marriage.
After deliberately humiliating a suitor, Celeste’s despairing parents exile her to the country. But once there she discovers a sketch book of daring nude studies and is shaken to find the artist is her hostess’s eldest son, Lord Ranulf Charing. This darkly cynical lord is exactly the sort of dissipated rogue she despises most…if only her blood didn’t heat at the thought of him…
Nothing is as it seems. Lord Ranulf’s life is a fa├žade. Only he can save the Charing’s from disgrace as a blackmailer seeks to ruin his late brother’s reputation. But just as Ranulf dares to open his heart to Celeste, the fury of his nemesis is unleashed… facing him with the stark choice between true love and family duty. However when Celeste guesses the truth behind his rejection, Ranulf underestimates her resolve to clear his name and in so doing places the woman he loves in mortal danger….


Exceprt:
Lord Ranulf Charing meets Celeste for the First Time….over a cow!

So be it. Ranulf gritted his teeth as he grasped the leading leg and pushed. It was like fighting against a brick wall, the calf barely moving. A lamb was difficult enough, how much more so a calf? Just as he was wondering if one man was strong enough, a shower of pebbles rattled down the bank. Concentrating on the calf, he barked.
“Don’t just stand there. Get down here!”
“I beg your pardon!” A woman’s voice answered.
With a flash of annoyance Ranulf glanced upward.
A wide eyed young woman in a straw bonnet peered down. “I say, is everything all right?”
“Does it look all right?” Muttering under his breath, all he needed was some sensitive Miss fainting on him. “Go! Fetch help from the house.”
He saw her hesitate, biting her top lip. “But you need help now.”
A contraction clamped around his arm as the cow's tail switched across his face, stinging his eyes like a cat-o-nine-tails.
In a flurry of muslin and lace the Miss slid down the bank, landing with a thud in the ditch.
“Ouch.” She rubbed her ankle. Ranulf glared back, dark eyes flashing.
“You should have gone to the house.” Damn it all, she could make herself useful then. “Hold the tail aside.”
Pulling a face she limped over. Ranulf's eye lingered for she merited a second glance. Of middle height with a tidy waist and curves where God intended them, she appeared quick witted and bright eyed. Without further ado, she stripped off her gloves throwing them onto a bramble bush. Long, sensitive fingers grasped the muddy tail. Practical, Ranulf thought, silently impressed.
“Why didn't you go for help?”
“There wasn't time.” Her bonnet slipped backwards, revealing a quirky face with a pointed chin, her lips finely drawn with an arched cupid's bow. The sort of face an artist could lose himself in, all shades of the sea to be found in deep emerald eyes framed by a tangle of chestnut hair.
Ranulf tightened his grasp and pushed. Sweat beading his brow. The calf retreated an inch.
“What are you doing?” Her voice was gentle and calm, if somewhat deep for a woman. Ranulf guessed it would be husky in bed, whispering over a pillow after a night of passion. Her eyes were on him - deep green eyes, lively and entrancing. Suddenly he remembered that he was undressed to the waist, her curious gaze on his skin as he was gripped by the idea of those lily white hands gliding over his naked chest, her almond shaped nails digging into his skin. He shook away the thought, trying to remember her question.
All innocence and interest she watched, blushing faintly in a charming way and yet, he realized, no wilting flower. He shook his head. The woman had asked a question, damn it. He would answer.
“The calf is breech.” He grunted, “I need to push her back into the womb to turn her…” He wanted to shock this stranger, to test how bold she truly was. She stared back, biting her top lip, exaggerating her snub nose.
“Ah!” Her gaze met his.
“Think of the calf as a carriage in a narrow driveway. To turn it around you push it back into the stable yard…”
“What can I do to help?”
“Nothing.” He growled.
Throwing him an angry look, she anchored the tail with a log and scrambled round to the beast's head. After a moment‟s thought, she placed her pelisse under the cow's head stroking the broad nose and crooning words of comfort.
“She's relaxing.” Ranulf's arm was numb from the contractions. He fell forward, as the first leg finally slid back into the womb. "That helps." His hair had come free from the ribbon, falling thickly about his shoulders. He glanced at the Miss. She was leaning forward, her bosom straining against a tight bodice, a satisfying cleavage between her breasts. He swallowed hard. She was odd looking, he decided, not exactly beautiful but eye catching none the less. Her face showed character, determination…and her complexion too healthy to be fashionable, rosy cheeked and peppered with freckles which with a hint of sunlight burst into a profusion.
The Miss was glaring at him now, her skin glowing bright pink. Had he been staring? His heart raced as he returned to the calving.


- oO0Oo-


Amazon.com $2.99
http://www.amazon.com/A-Dead-Mans-Debt-ebook/dp/B0046REKBS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=A7B2F8DUJ88VZ&s=books&qid=1293833253&sr=1-1

Amazon.co.uk GBP 2.14
http://www.amazon.co.uk/A-Dead-Mans-Debt/dp/B0046REKBS/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293833360&sr=1-1


Solstice publishing.
http://www.solsticepublishing.com/products/A-Dead-Man%27s-Debt-%252d%252d%252d-PDF.html


Smashwords.
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/26527


Fictionwise
http://www.fictionwise.com/ebooks/b115169/A-Dead-Mans-Debt/Grace-Elliot/?si=0


Books on Board UK
http://www.booksonboard.com/index.php?BODY=searchresults&SEARCH=a%20dead%20man's%20debt