Saturday, 18 October 2014

Building a Dead New World by Ryan Hill @j_ryan #YA #zombie #postapoc

Building a post-apocalyptic zombie world



Building a word is one of the most fun - and challenging - things a writer can take on. Creating a world out of thin air, like, say, Middle Earth, is one thing. It's an entirely new world with no previously set rules or expectations in place. When I decided to write Dead New World, I didn't have that luxury when I thought up the story's world.

Most everybody is familiar with the zombie genre in books and films. The genre comes with a certain set of rules to follow, or you run the risk of alienating the core audience. With DNW, I first decided when to set the story. I thought it would be fun to have characters who'd only known a world overrun by zombies, so Holt, the main character in DNW, was born shortly after the zombie apocalypse happened. This also provided the added fun of having characters with no clue about things like the Super Bowl, or Vietnam.


Once I had the time figured out, I started thinking in more detail about this world. If people survived as long as seventeen years after the zombie apocalypse, groups had to have banded together. Built protective enclosures to live in. Being in places that were already somewhat secure, like a military fort, only made sense. In DNW, the humans are barely hanging on, but they're also trying to take back the world. Every day, the military goes out and tries to destroy as many zombies as they can, hoping to take the country back bit-by-bit. But why would people do this? If everything had gone to hell, why bother with restoring order? That led to the idea of the US government trying to rebuild Washington, DC.


Strategically, taking back a city, like DC, doesn't make any sense. It's suicide to try and take back a city flooded with zombies. But, in DNW, humans take back DC. It took a long time and cost upwards of a million lives, but retaking DC was more a PR move than anything else. By controlling the nation's capitol,people can have a symbol that the United States lives on, and one day things will go back to the way they were. Sure, it won't happen any time soon (if at all), but it gives people hope.


One thing I really wanted to explore in DNW was the idea of religion and zombies. Personally, if zombies started walking around, it would be some sort of confirmation that there's life after death, making religion vital to some people. I mean, if the dead can rise, wouldn't that confirm there's a God? How would people react to that? The entire world of DNW has a religious undercurrent for that very reason.


Apart from that, I just tried to think of a twisted, scary world where zombies aren't necessarily the biggest threat out there. DNW certainly acknowledges the tropes of the genre, but it also takes a lot of them and adds some wrinkles, making the world unique unto itself. What kind of wrinkles, you ask? You'll have to read Dead New World to find out.





Bio:




Growing up, Ryan Hill used to spend his time reading and writing instead of doing homework. This resulted in an obsession with becoming a writer, but also a gross incompetence in the fields of science and mathematics. A graduate of North Carolina State University, Ryan has been a film critic for over five years. He lives in Raleigh, NC, with his dog/shadow Maggie. Ryan also feels strange about referring to himself in the third person.


Find him on Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook and his website.


Add the book on Goodreads

Buy it on Amazon US or Amazon UK

Blurb:

Zombies aren’t mindless anymore. 

Before the world fell into chaos, zombies existed only in the imagination. Now, there’re more dead walking the earth than living. Zombies move about freely, while humans are forced behind concrete barricades to stay alive. 

A man known only as the Reverend has become a threat to the rebuilding United States. The leader of a powerful cult, the Reverend somehow controls the zombies, bending them to his will. He believes zombies are God’s latest creation, making humanity obsolete, and he wants to give every man, woman, and child the chance to become one. With the Horsemen of the Apocalypse, his army composed of both humans and zombies, he may well get his wish. 

Best friends Holt and Ambrose went up against the Reverend once. Holt lost a foot and a zombie bit Ambrose… though he didn’t completely turn. He survived the virus, only to become a human-zombie hybrid, reviled by the living and unwelcome among the dead. When the Reverend kidnaps the woman Holt loves, the race is on to save her from a fate worse than death. 

Holt and Ambrose must sacrifice everything to take down the Reverend and survive in this dead new world. But will they lose their souls in the process?


(psst, I gave Dead New World four gruesomely shiny stars! Go buy it!)

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Red stilettos and Lightbulbs - Guest Post by Sofia Grey #scifi #romance

You know how sometimes, the best results come about by accident? That’s how Return to Emerald City happened.

I was working on a short story aimed at a Christmas anthology. It featured a heroine called Dorothy, a pair of bright red stilettos, and a longing to go home. Real life got in the way of my writing, and I put my story aside to work on other commitments.

Around the same time, my writing / critique partner—Allyson Lindt—was finishing up a novella loosely named The Tin Man, about a futuristic hero with cybernetic implants. Camden has a lot of implants, and fears he’s lost his heart along the way.

I’m not sure who had the lightbulb moment first, but we both saw the potential for combining the stories. They both had a Wizard of Oz connection. From there we hashed out some details, agreed to each write another (for the Scarecrow and the Lion) and Return to Emerald City was born.

Sounds lovely and simple? The idea was, but like most stunning ideas, it had to be turned into reality. The first issue was creating the world, and this meant futurising Dorothy. I’d written her story as a contemp, but in order to mesh in with Camden’s, I had to shift it forty years into the future.

We wanted the stories to all link together, for the characters to develop across the story arc, and this happened surprisingly easily. Like all good characters, they grew and changed, and shared their stories with us.

We were beautifully organised, sharing documents in Google Drive and trying to keep track of the myriad of tiny details that needed to be consistent across four stories. I’ve lost track of the number of emails going back and forth between us, querying things like:
-          is it Mag-Line, Magline, or MagLine?
-          What’s the name of Camden’s girlfriend? I’ve forgotten it…

Did I mention that Allyson and I are not only in different time zones, we’re on different dates! She’s in the USA, while I live down under in New Zealand. It made collaborating interesting, to say the least * grin *

And after months of detail-checking, editing (huge thanks to “A” for content edits, and Sotia Lazu for line edits), and hours of poring over Shutterstock for the perfect cover model (isn’t Dorothy beautiful?), it’s finally released.

We had a blast working together on this, and know what? We’re already planning another collaboration for next year. Watch this space…



Excerpt from His Rewind Girl

His smile had gone from playful to dangerous, and a spike of desire drove through her. She fumbled for something witty to say, but every word raced from her thoughts.
“I might be thinking something.” His voice had dropped an octave, and she felt it roll through her as much as she heard it. Her heartbeat increased, and every inch of her pulsed with a hyper-aware sensitivity.
A heavy pause hung between them, and then he dipped his head. His mouth found hers, feather-light kiss touching her lips. She gasped, and leaned closer to deepen the kiss.
He pulled back, and disappointment flooded her. But his hand still caressed her waist. His quiet voice wove through the night. “You should know I’m not in the market for any kind of relationship. Not emotionally, anyway.”
When he shifted his weight, a distant streetlight bounced off something hanging around his neck. She squinted, and sick disbelief crawled into her gut. A gold ring with a tiny diamond hung from the chain. It had to have fallen out during their ride. She swallowed, mouth suddenly dry. “You’re married.”
He glanced down at his chest, corners of his mouth tugging down. He shoved the chain back under his shirt. “No. Not even close.” His jaw tightened, and he dropped his arm. “Never mind. I need to get home.”
Single, emotionally attached to someone else, and oh so alluring. Perfect. She grabbed his synth hand before she could talk herself out of it. She knew CyGes did an amazing job with their implants, but it still occasionally caught her off guard that a fake hand felt as real as any real one, from texture to temperature. It was in the little details—speed, precision, stamina—that the differences shone through.
“Do you have to, really?” She cringed at the plea in her voice, and pushed as much of it away as she could. “I’m sorry if I dragged up bad memories.”
He didn’t pull away, but he also didn’t move closer. “Don’t worry about it.”
“I’m not looking for anything emotional either.” Did people usually talk about one night stands like this? How awkward. Why couldn’t they just do it then go their separate ways? She traced her thumb over the back of his knuckles. “We can go back to my hotel. Or just hang here and talk a little longer.”
Wow, talk about desperate sounding. She fumbled internally for the confidence that had driven her to start this entire conversation.
He shook his head. “I’m sorry. This was a bad idea.”
Pride kept her going as much as want. She pulled his hand up and laid tiny kisses along each fingertip. The faint scent of silicone greeted her again, and she tried to be subtle about inhaling. “I didn’t mean to ruin the mood. We can get it back.”
“Probably not wise.” Despite his words, the determination was gone from his voice. His shoulders relaxed, and his expression softened.
She pressed her body as close to his as she could be without making contact. She flicked her tongue out over one of his fingers, and a low growl rumbled from his chest. That was a delicious sound. She sucked the finger into her mouth. A hint of plastic mingled with the taste of skin. Damn, she loved that taste. She closed her eyes, savoring the moment.
Her eyes snapped open, when he jerked his hand away. She was stunned to find him glaring at her, eyes practically a glacier. She frowned. “Did I do something wrong?”
He put more than a foot between them. “You knew.”
She raised her eyebrows. What was she missing? “Knew…?”
He sighed and shook his head, jamming his hands into his pockets. “You knew I’m part synth.”
She shrugged. “So?”
“Fuck.” He spoke between clenched teeth. “I’m not a fucking human vibrator. And I’m not interested in being your fetish.”
The blunt words, as honest as they were, sliced her and dug deep in the resulting wounds. “Excuse me?”
He spun away, already mounting his bike. “Go find someone else’s bike to ride. I’ve got an appointment in the morning.”
She glared at his rapidly vanishing back, as he peeled off and tore down the road. Hurt and embarrassment warred for her attention. She kicked both aside and smothered them with anger.

Asshole.
***



Blurb

Dorothy’s Red Shoes 
There’s no place like home… Dorothy is already feeling homesick for Emerald City, and wonders if taking a job halfway around the world was a mistake. When her love life crumbles–again–will she run for home? 

His Replay Girl 
If he only had the nerve… Ten years ago, Quinn made the best choice of his life, and the biggest mistake. It’s true, his band, Lionheart, is one of the biggest in the world, but how much does it mean if he can’t tell the woman he loves how he feels? 

His Reboot Girl 
If he only had a brain… Scott woke up with his head spinning and not much else going on up there. Now he’s a suspect in a terrorist plot, and on the run. One woman insists she's the key to his past and his freedom. Too bad he doesn't remember her. 

His Rewind Girl 
If he only had a heart.... Cam is as much machine as man. There are days he loathes the CyGes implants that saved his life but couldn't do the same for his family. They replaced his limbs, but now he needs someone to mend his heart.


Buy Return to Emerald City

Find Sofia Grey Online:



Twitter: @SofiaGreyAuthor   https://twitter.com/SofiaGreyAuthor 
Amazon author profile page: https://www.amazon.com/author/sofiagrey

Find Allyson Lindt Online


Catch Sofia & Allyson blogging at www.GeminiGirls.com




About Sofia Grey:

Romance author Sofia Grey spends her days managing projects in the corporate world and her nights hanging out with wolf shifters and alpha males. She devours pretty much anything in the fiction line, but she prefers her romances to be hot, and her heroes to have hidden depths. When writing, she enjoys peeling back the layers to expose her characters’ flaws and always makes them work hard for their happy endings.



About Allyson Lindt:

Allyson Lindt is a full-time geek and a fuller-time contemporary romance author. She prefers that her geeky heroes come with the alpha expansion pack and adores a heroine who can hold her own in a boardroom. She loves a sexy happily-ever-after and helping deserving cubicle dwellers find their futures together.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Tuesday Teaser - Looted by Sheri Verlarde


Excerpt:

Bruce sat in the lounge. Another night, another expensive bar. He didn’t think his NYPD salary would take much more of this side investigation, but he knew that he was on the right track. Now he just needed to find his mystery beauty, then the real investigation could begin. He had sent out feelers to every host of the finer bars, restaurants and hotels in town, hoping to find a woman to match the description he had. Needless to say there were a lot of gorgeous women in Manhattan and he had spent more time and money than he cared to think about chasing models and actresses.

This was his last tip and his wallet thanked him. If this didn’t pan out, well then back to the drawing board. The fellows back at the station were already making fun of him for searching for a “Model Ring of Thieves,” but they all also knew his hunches always paid off. Could this be the first time he was actually wrong?

Suddenly he felt a hot tingle running down his spine, something more than his “spidey sense” the guys joked about. This was a first. His entire being seemed to be heating up from the inside. It was not unpleasant, but it certainly left him feeling confused. He turned around and saw her walking into the lounge. He had seen the best-looking women Manhattan had to offer over the past few weeks, but none of them could compare to this creature. As he stared, she turned toward him and gave a start, a look of surprise quickly passing over her face before she resumed her beautiful perfection. This was the woman he had been searching for.

Blurb:

Sophia longs for the days when she was worshipped as a goddess and celebrated for her glory. Now she hides in plain sight and does what she must to keep the lifestyle she is accustomed. She has never been close to discovery until one New York City Detective, Bruce Stoker, enters the picture. Now all that she is and has done could come out into the open and destroy everything. She should disappear, but there is something different about this man that draws her to him.

Detective Bruce Stoker has never had an unsolved case, but there is something different about these art heists. Money is taken, but art is given to museums. Strange. If he can find the beautiful woman who seems to be the common link, then everything should be simple. That is what he thought at least until he met the gorgeous suspect in question.

Bio:

Sheri Velarde, who sometimes uses the pen name Kelly Ryan, lives in New Mexico and grew up with a fascination for all things that "go bump in the night", so it is no wonder that she turned to writing paranormal romance. In her spare time, she fancies herself a cryptozoologist and loves to paranormal related outings, searching for things that might not really exist. She is an avid exerciser and gets some of her best ideas while on runs. She also has a bit of a wild side, which only leads to inspiration for her writing.

Being an avid reader since an early age, she has wanted to be a writer for as long as she can remember. She has been writing all her life, but only recently started to actually try to pursue her dream of writing for a living.

She is constantly putting out new material, so it is best to keep up with her on her website.

Kelly/Sheri is a multi-published author; you can keep up to date with all things Kelly Ryan/Sheri Velarde at: www.sherivelarde.weebly.com or on Facebook at Sheri Velarde/Kelly Ryan.

Buy links:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Looted-Weekend-Getaways-Book-126-ebook/dp/B00O4ILMX8/

Bookstrand: http://www.bookstrand.com/looted

All Romance eBooks: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-looted-1638247-149.html

Secret Cravings: http://store.secretcravingspublishing.com/index.php?main_page=book_info&products_id=953&zenid=u8qd49n44ibepogvtvpscipqh4


Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/looted-sheri-velarde/1120452485?ean=2940046210903

Monday, 13 October 2014

Hoping for Love at #Halloween - Hallow's Eve tour begins #giveaway #paranormal #romance


And so it begins! The 13th might not be the most auspicious date to begin a book tour, but strangely in keeping with the Halloween theme I feel. So, to follow along on the tour and enter the spooky giveaway taking place until the end of October, please visit my awesome hosts below (and you can see what magic topics they'll be hosting):

13thWinter Bayne Fairies, Imps and Sprites
15th - Going from Somebody to Nobody Three Little Things (story inspiration)
17thLizaO’Connor Red Hair Rocks
19thKristina Stutts How to make a Woman
20th - Layna Pimentel Review
21stCelia Breslin All Hallows’ Eve
22ndSonya Clark Interview
24thPatty Hammond Five Facts about Hallow’s Eve
25thParanormal Reads Review
27thLiana Brooks Hodge’s Spiced Elderberry Cordial
26th+27thParanormal Romantics Interview

30th - Mark of the Stars Five Facts about Witchcraft

Friday, 10 October 2014

Creating a Believable System of Magic for Fiction - #Guest post by Vanessa Finaughty


Thank you for having me on your blog today, Pippa.

In order to create a believable system of magic for fiction, I believe it’s vital to suspend the reader’s belief. This tends to work best when the line between fact and fiction is blurred to the point where the impossible seems possible. When creating a magic system, the first thing you need to consider is that mystery is the only thing that distinguishes magic from science – because magic in the real world is merely science that is not yet understood. At least, that’s a common belief in today’s world and one I hold too. So, while it is important to use logic when creating your magic systems, some mystery is equally vital in order to keep your magic magical and exciting.

By ‘logic’, I mean that you should set rules and stick to them. This doesn’t mean that every little aspect of how magic works needs to be explained in detail – unless you want to, of course; that’s also perfectly acceptable. Your rules can be mysterious and perhaps none of your characters know why something works a certain way, but, once you’ve implemented that rule, stick to it. For example, if, in your magic system, only one gender can use magic, you can’t portray the non-magical gender as a random side character using magic. You can, however, have an MC or other main character of the non-magical gender who can use magic. In fact, this has the potential to drive the plot – why can he/she use magic when no other of his/her gender can? How does it affect the character’s life, opinions and actions? You get the idea.

In real life, there are limitations to pretty much everything. Even the most fantastical story becomes believable if there are limitations to how magic can be used and by whom. If magic could easily solve every problem, there would be no room for conflict, rendering almost any story boring. Also consider whether or not there is a cost for using magic in your world. Is it physically or emotionally draining or, like Wizard of Ends MC Lashlor Leaflin believes, will overusing it result in an unpleasant afterlife – or other negative consequences?

Another important thing to decide is how many types of magic are present in your world. Describe each one and be sure to point out their differences and similarities, if there are any. When magic is used, also describe what it looks like – is it colourful or an invisible force, liquid, powder, gas or something entirely different?

Other things to consider are: can magic be countered or reversed, and how? Does magic ‘expire’ and, if so, how long does it last? Who can use magic in your world? Everyone, only a few, only holy people like high priests? If the latter, what makes the few different? If nothing, mention that in the story to add an air of mystery. Do magic users need special training or is it a natural ability, or perhaps a natural ability that one needs to be trained to control? Is magic outlawed or persecuted, or accepted, and why? Where does the magic in your world come from? Nature? A divine power? Is it a part of the user, the life force or a genetic difference? How is magic performed? Are spirits contacted, rituals performed, herbs and potions used, does it require a spell or is willpower the only thing required? If magic users in your world use any special ingredients or objects in order to perform magic, where do they obtain those things?



This article only scratches the surface of creating believable systems of magic in fiction, but I believe I’ve covered the most important aspects and hope you found the information helpful. Happy writing!














Blurb Book 1

A powerful sorceress wants the Queen of Ends dead, hoping her demise will render the king unable to defend his crown. Only the wizard Lashlor Leaflin is in a position to protect Queen Narraki Dragonsbane, but he avoids using magic – at almost any cost. With creatures of darkness hunting the queen, however, he may be left with little choice but to call on the power he holds within.


Author biography

Vanessa Finaughty is an author of many genres who now focuses on fantasy and science fiction. She’s published 15 books, of which 6 are fantasy. Vanessa grew up in Cape Town, South Africa, and still lives there with her husband of fifteen years, her baby daughter and plenty of furry, four-legged ‘children’.

Vanessa has always been passionate about books, and knew from a young age that she wanted to write them one day. She loves animals, coffee and the smell of wet grass, and hates liars, sweltering weather and long queues. Her interests include reading, photography, the supernatural, mythology, aliens and outer space, ancient history, life’s mysteries and martial arts, of which she has five years’ experience.

Book One is now available to buy and book two is available for pre-order:

Book 2: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/483464

Links


Publication dates

Wizard of Ends, Book 1: 9 October 2014

Wizard of Ends, Book 2: Dark Creature: 23 October 2014 

Giveaways:


Wizard of Ends GIVEAWAY & DISCOUNT DATES
All coupons below offer a 100% discount.


11 – 13 October
Smashwords coupon code: ZU52B
Valid: 11 – 13 October

16 October
Sorcery & Subterfuge by Vanessa Finaughty
Smashwords coupon code: HA38K
Valid: 16 October

18 – 20 October
The Angel’s Voice, Books 1 & 2 by Michelle Louring
Smashwords coupon code for Book 1: FH27E
Smashwords coupon code for Book 2: EN84L
Valid: 18 – 20 October

21 October
Royal Wizard by Alianne Donnelly
Smashwords coupon code: XV26R 
Valid: 21 October

24 October
Legends of Origin, Books 1 – 3 by Vanessa Finaughty
Book 1 is permanently free.
Smashwords coupon code for Book 2: BP37Q
Smashwords coupon code for Book 3: YC54A
Valid: 24 October

27 October
The Accidental Wizard by Simon Ludgate
Smashwords coupon code: FM47Z

Valid: 27 October




Wizard of Ends Virtual Book Tour Itinerary
1 – 31 October 2014

Wednesday, 1 October – tour kick-off
What Inspired Wizard of Ends, hosted by Richard Foland
Author blog: Tour introduction

Thursday, 2 October
Guest post by MC Lashlor Leaflin: Abusing Magic, hosted by Lauren Scharhag
Author blog: Wizard of Ends, Book 1 – COVER REVEAL!

Friday, 3 October
Wizard of Ends showcase, hosted by Alex James
Author blog: An Official Introduction to the Wizard of Ends Fantasy Adventure Series

Saturday, 4 October
The Real World’s First School of Wizardry, hosted by Mathew Reuther
Author blog: Wizard of Ends, Book 2 – COVER REVEAL!

Sunday, 5 October
10 Cool Bookish Gifts, hosted by DJ’s Book Corner
Author blog: Wizard of Ends Book Trailer

Monday, 6 October
Interview with Vanessa Finaughty, hosted by TC Southwell
Author blog: Magic in Real Life

Tuesday, 7 October
5 Reasons I Prefer Self-Publishing, hosted by Michelle Louring
Author blog: 5 Things I Love About Wizard of Ends

Wednesday, 8 October
Wizard of Ends showcase, hosted by Tracy Falbe
5 Reasons to Love Lashlor Leaflin, hosted by Bookin’ It
Author blog: Wizard of Ends, Book 1, Chapter 1 – read the full first chapter!

Thursday, 9 October
Ancient Magic Books, hosted by Juli D. Revezzo
Author blog: Publication of Wizard of Ends, Book 1

Friday, 10 October
How to Create Believable Systems of Magic for Fiction, hosted by Pippa Jay
Author blog: Character Interview with Wizard of Ends MC, Lashlor Leaflin

Saturday, 11 October
How Long Should a Fiction Book Chapter Be? hosted by Potpourri Parlor
Author blog: Get Dragon Kin & other fantasy stories for FREE for the next 3 days only!

Sunday, 12 October
Wizard of Ends book trailer, hosted by Lauren Scharhag
Author blog: Wizard of Ends MC Lashlor Leaflin’s Biography

Monday, 13 October
Extract from Wizard of Ends, Book 1, hosted by Fireblade Publishers
Author blog: Last day to get Dragon Kin for free

Tuesday, 14 October
Interview with Vanessa Finaughty, hosted by Glynis Smy
Author blog: How to Make a Fantasy Castle Cake

Wednesday, 15 October
3 Ancient Irish Spells & Charms, hosted by Tracy Falbe
Author blog: Wizard of Ends, Book 2: Dark Creature, Chapter 1 – read the full first chapter!

Thursday, 16 October
Interview with Vanessa Finaughty, hosted by Louise Blankenship
Author blog: Get Sorcery & Subterfuge for FREE for TODAY ONLY

Friday, 17 October
Magic Systems in Wizard of Ends, hosted by Daniel Marvello
Author blog: 6 Magical Ebook Covers

Saturday, 18 October
Interview with Vanessa Finaughty, hosted by DJ’s Book Corner
Author blog: Get Michelle Louring’s The Angel’s Voice, Books 1 & 2 for FREE for the next 3 days only!

Sunday, 19 October
Magic of the Ancient Egyptians, hosted by Alex James
Author blog: King Lanaran’s Biography

Monday, 20 October
Healing Magic in Today’s World – hosted by TC Southwell
Author blog: Should Children Be Exposed to Fantasy?

Tuesday, 21 October
Interview with Vanessa Finaughty, hosted by Writer’s Gambit
Author blog: Get Alianne Donnelly’s The Royal Wizard for FREE for today only!

Wednesday, 22 October
5 Tips for New Writers, hosted by Nicholas C. Rossis
Author blog: Extract from Wizard of Ends, Book 1

Thursday, 23 October
Modern Science & Ancient Magic, hosted by Katharina Gerlach
Reviews of Wizard of Ends, Books 1 & 2, extract and Wizard of Ends: Full Disclosure, hosted by Kelly Smith Reviews
Author blog: Publication of Wizard of Ends, Book 2: Dark Creature – 99c for TODAY ONLY!

Friday, 24 October
Author blog: Legends of Origin, Books 2 & 3FREE for today only!

Saturday, 25 October
Character interview with Queen Narraki Dragonsbane, hosted by Louise Blankenship
Author blog: The Ancient Book of Thoth

Sunday, 26 October
Review of Wizard of Ends, Book 2, hosted by Alex James
Author blog: Extract from Wizard of Ends, Book 2

Monday, 27 October
5 Modern Real-World Attempts to Use Magic, hosted by Richard Foland
Author blog: Get Simon Ludgate’s The Accidental Wizard for FREE for today only!

Tuesday, 28 October
How to Create Original Fantasy Creatures, hosted by Independent Bookworm
Author blog: Lashlor Leaflin’s Bucket List

Wednesday, 29 October
Character interview with Lashlor Leaflin, hosted by Sandra Ulbrich Almazan
Author blog: Extract from Wizard of Ends, Book 2

Thursday, 30 October
How to Introduce and Write About Nameless Characters, hosted by Michelle Louring
Author blog: Ancient Magical Plants

Friday, 31 October
10 Facts About Vanessa Finaughty, hosted by Writer’s Gambit
Author blog: An End to the Tour, but not the Books





Wednesday, 8 October 2014

#Release Day for Hallow's Eve! #paranormal #romance


It's here, it's here! Hallow's Eve is now available to buy! My sweet Halloween-themed paranormal romance is out in the wild, in time for you to cosy up with this little short for the autumn, maybe with a pumpkin spiced latte. 

Blurb:



Twelve months ago, Hal’s world crashed and burned, taking the love of his life with it. He’s waited all year for that one special night when the souls of the departed come home, hoping his candle will summon back one in particular to heal his broken heart. But the forbidden knowledge he’s learned could call something far worse, and put more than his own soul at risk...

The tour for Hallow's Eve begins next week, and you can check out the list of my hosts below, and what I'll be talking about at each. You can also still enter the international rafflecopter to win a pentagram necklace and six jasmine-scented glittery tealights (open until the end of October)




a Rafflecopter giveaway


13thWinter Bayne Fairies, Imps and Sprites
15th - Going from Somebody to Nobody Three Little Things (story inspiration)
17thLiza O’Connor Red Hair Rocks
19thKristina Stutts How to make a Woman
20th - Layna Pimentel Review
21stCelia Breslin All Hallows’ Eve
22ndSonya Clark Interview
24thPatty Hammond Five Facts about Hallow’s Eve
25thParanormal Reads Review
27thLiana Brooks Hodge’s Spiced Elderberry Cordial
28th – Paranormal Romantics Interview

Monday, 6 October 2014

Meet the #Author - Sofia Grey (@sofiagreyauthor)


Please tell us a bit about yourself:
Hi Pippa. I’m an English lady, transplanted to New Zealand a few years ago. I have to say the weather is better here * grin *. I write contemp and paranormal romance, with a tendency toward the darker side of life, and have just embarked on a time travel series.

Tell us about Lila’s Wolf: This is book 1 in the Out of Time series. The action moves from 500 years in the future, back to Dark Age Britain, with my time travellers searching for a fugitive – a time runaway.

What inspired you to write this particular story? I have a love of the period, and liked the contrast between the two times, but the story emerged after re-reading a historical novel I’d loved as a teen: The Lantern Bearers, by Rosemary Sutcliff. In this, a young Roman soldier deserts from the army when they’re pulling out of Britain, and he is captured and enslaved by the Saxons. That story stayed with me, and inspired me to write Lila’s Wolf.

Please share a favourite snippet from your book:
“Flavius came looking for Jared, wanting to speak to him urgently. There was a rumour of Saxons raiding on the east coast, and Flavius wanted to head west, taking as many with him as he could. I knew from the Archives that there were no significant raids for weeks, not until after the Romans had left Britain, but Jared didn’t believe me. We argued.”

I’d never seen him so harsh before. The dear friend who showered me with affection vanished with the morning mist. This new Jared looked tough and uncompromising. For the first time, I could imagine him settling in this time period, living alongside Flavius and his friends, fighting for a worthy cause. It worried me.

“The Archives aren’t infallible, Lila. What if they’re constructed on flawed data? Flavius saw the messenger riding through town—‘as though the devil were on his heels,’ was how he described the man. He’s taking the warning seriously and we should too.”

“The Archives are constructed on data that historians like us provide.” I was stung by his suggestion. “We’re not the first historians to be here, so how come we’re the first to hear about this supposed raid? And even if there is one, it’s minor. Not. Significant. We wouldn’t even notice it.”

Which comes first for you – a character's looks, personality or name?: Usually the looks. I’ll spend hours on Pinterest looking at faces before I find one that calls to me, and then the name falls into place.

Any tips for aspiring authors?: When you’re happy with your work, be brave. Find a writing group, and open yourself up to honest criticism. It hurts when they tell you what’s wrong with your beloved manuscript (it feels like they’re saying you have an ugly baby * cries *), but it’s a hundred times worse when it’s readers and reviewers tearing it to pieces.

Questions for fun:
If you had the power of time travel, is there anything you would go back and change? Why/why not?:
Oohhhh... so tempting... I’d love to go back to July 1985, and get tickets for the Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium. I watched it on TV, but would have loved to be there in the crowd.

What super-power would you choose?:
Ha! We talked about this in the office recently, one slow Friday afternoon. I chose to travel anywhere instantly. On a side note, one of my nicknames is the Goddess of Cat Summoning, because I have 6 cats. So I already have a kinda super-power...

If you could have three wishes, what would they be?: Eeep! I’m useless with this question. I feel like I should pick something worthy like world peace, but in reality it would be:
To earn enough money writing, to be able to give up the day job
To get a fantastic book contract with one of the big publishers
To have a branch of Marks & Spencer open here in New Zealand. And IKEA. And a branch of Costco

Coffee, tea or wine?: Coffeeeeeeeee! But tea first thing. And wine in the evening. Can I have all three?

What is your favourite book? (aside from one of your own!):
There’s a few, but my constant favourites are:
Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier
The Bronze Horseman, by Paullina Simons
After You'd Gone, by Maggie O'Farell

Favourite genre and why?: Eh, that’s like asking me my favourite chocolate! I adore PNR, but I also love contemp. And historical. And sci-fi. I guess they all have to have some romance in them.

Favourite colour?: Pink! I drive my hubby and son crazy with my pink netbook, phone cover, Kindle cover, iPods, Tablet, laptop case... earbuds... external speakers...

Upcoming news and plans for the future?: Right now I’m editing 2 novellas for a collection due out in October – Return to Emerald City. This has 4 novellas inspired by the Wizard of Oz, but set 40 years or so in the future (better tech!). The second book in the Out of Time series is half written, and I’ve got 2 shifter novellas coming out in 2 separate Christmas anthologies.


Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us! It was a blast, thank you J

Lila’s Wolf (Out of Time #1) is available 4 September 2014, from Hartwood Publishing

Genre: Dark time-travel romantic suspense




The only way to save him, might be to leave him behind

Blurb:

When Lila Cammell is abandoned by her time-jump partner, leaving her alone in Britain in the Dark Ages, revenge is the only thing on her mind. She’d trusted Jared Grohl with her life and her heart, and bringing him to justice will be sweet.
Finding him captured and enslaved by the Saxons changes all her assumptions. Now it’s a fight for survival, but the only way to save him, might be to leave him behind.

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Bio: 

Romance author Sofia Grey spends her days managing projects in the corporate world and her nights hanging out with wolf shifters and alpha males. She devours pretty much anything in the fiction line, but she prefers her romances to be hot, and her heroes to have hidden depths. When writing, she enjoys peeling back the layers to expose her characters’ flaws and always makes them work hard for their happy endings.

Music is interwoven so tightly into my writing that I can’t untangle the two. Either I’m listening to a playlist on my iPod, have music seeping from my laptop speakers, or there’s a song playing in my head – sometimes on auto-repeat.

Check out my playlists on Pinterest


Catch me blogging with Allyson Lindt at www.GeminiGirls.com


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