Monday, March 31, 2014

Welcome A. L. Kessler to Publishness-land :-)

*Pssst! Hey, for her blog tour, I've opened my blog to A. L. Kessler to share her thoughts/experiences as an author and to shout out about her newest release, Dance in the Moonlight. Okay, enough from me as I fade into the background. It's all yours, A. L.*

First off I want to thank Angela Brown for having me on her blog today to help celebrate the release of Dance in the Moonlight (you're mighty welcome!). I’m here today to talk a little bit about the challenges I faced with Dance, but I’m going to focus on one particular that I think a lot of authors face to some degree. Doubt.

Doubt is something I had to deal with a lot when it came to writing Dance in the Moonlight. After releasing In the Light of the Moon, my tiny ego was hit hard and I was thrown off my short horse. (I would say tall, but I didn’t have a long way to go.) The event that did this to me is one that I don’t tell in detail, because it includes other people, but I will say it hurt and it hurt a lot (Argh! I can so understand your pain). The little voice of doubt crawled into my head and I had lost all confidence in my DWC series. So how does one get over such a hard hit? You find support.

I find that the word Indie author is very misleading, because very few people really do everything on their own. I wouldn’t be anywhere without the people who work with me in all aspects of publishing, from the readers to the editors, to the family that supports me. When doubt rears it’s ugly head, I go to my support system. I talk it out and I continue on. You see, doubt can’t win if you keep going. I won’t lie to you, the doubt is never gone, but as an author I refuse to let it stop me (Don't stop! Get it! Get it!).

I have seen many authors vent about doubt on Facebook to get an ego stroke, but this is not what this post is about. This post is about overcoming that doubt. There've been many times where I felt like giving up, throwing in the towel, and just crying in the corner. If you could see the rewriting, the feedback, the sweat that went into Dance, you would understand what I’m talking about. As a reader, these are the things you don’t see.

Dance in the Moonlight started out somewhere around 38k words. I had it finished before In the Light of the Moon was published. After some feedback from readers and other authors, I knew I needed to do something to Dance to help it meet reader expectations. So I added almost 20k more words to it and handed to my betas. One of my betas sat down with me and told me that it was good, but it could be better. So I worked with her on rewriting, reworking, and polishing it up some more. Through the entire process I was worried that it wouldn’t be good enough, that another ‘event’ would come as soon as I hit publish, but that didn’t stop me. All that hard work will pay off. It’s up, it’s out, and the reviews coming in have been awesome (YAY!).


So other than support and keep moving, what do I do to chase that doubt away? I get away for a little bit. I do a hard work out, have a cup of coffee, play with the baby, the dog, play video games, and remind myself that doubt does not rule me.  

Way to stay focused and keep at making your dreams come true, A. L.!

A.L. Kessler’s Dance in the Moonlight (DWC #2)
Released: March 13th, 2014

Renee’s life had been normal until the shadows reappeared and the legendary stone was sent to her. As the arrival drags her further into the paranormal world, the last thing Renee expects is to be swept off her feet by a brooding werewolf. 

Yet Coran captures her heart and attention. Small problem—he doesn't want a mate. Coran still suffers from the loss of his first mate, but when Renee is attacked by shifters he is forced to protect her at all costs. Things heat up when he realizes fate has wickedly granted him a second chance at love. With the war causing the body count to rise, now is not the ideal time to find a mate. 

The Circle is becoming desperate and something has Lucius worried which means trouble for his followers. It's a dance between danger and fate in this second installment of the Dark War Chronicles.

Buy Links:

Author Bio:

A.L. Kessler is a paranormal romance author living in beautiful Colorado Springs, CO. When she’s not at beck and call of the household—made up of her cats, dog, daughter and husband—she can be found hard at work on her next novel. In those rare moments of free time, she can be found playing video games, crafting, or reading.

Author Links

Other Works

Novels:
Midnight Symphony
In the Light of the Moon

Short Stories:
The Touch of Night
Of Souls and Steam (Penny Dread Vol. 4)

Friday, March 28, 2014

BOUND TO COLLIDE

If you've had a chance to keep up with my alter ego, Rayven Godchild, you know three short stories have been released, each one a steamy erotic secret shared by geek-turned-sex-fiend, Chancellor Baltimore. Well, a certain someone has been mentioned in each short story, and now...well...it is time for Chancellor to meet again with the one woman who brings out the deepest fiend in him:

Neela

And it goes down in...
Before BOUND TO COLLIDE is released in a couple of weeks, you can catch up on all the Confessions of a Sex Fiend series. Click on the title and get to Amazon where you can Buy with 1-click :-)
Tasting Cherry - there's a first time for everything
A View to Ecstasy - so much fun when there's more than two in the tango
Retreat Bound - being bound can bring such exquisite pain and pleasure

Have you had a chance to read any of Chancellor's Confessions? If so, do you have a favorite? I'm a bit biased and favor all three, but Retreat Bound was a pleasant surprise to write (as Rayven Godchild) and re-read (as me). What the funishment does to the female character was just...wow.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

One Word Wednesday

There's something appreciable about the brevity of One Word Wednesday :-)

Okay, so I have to use two words for this:

Fluffy Happiness!

What one word (or two or three) does this picture conjure in our mind?

Monday, March 24, 2014

Houses of Common blog tour

Let's welcome Derick William Dalton, author of sci-fi thriller Houses of Common, to Publishness-land. Here's a little something about the book:

About Houses of Common: In the 22nd century, pilgrims leave Earth for the nearby planets that terraformers have crafted to meet their needs. Ranyk is a smart-mouthed alien, the best of the world-builders employed by the US government--and he always completes his risky assignments solo, pushing to the deep recesses of space for the good of colonists and to avoid his growing fame.

Until he's handed an on-planet assignment in Ireland, of all places, as an undercover international student of aquaponics. His real plan? To pull scientists and their families out of a country careening toward civil war--and off earth to a world of their own before marital-law lockdown ends their ground-breaking discoveries.

Risking his life is no novelty for Ranyk. He's been battered by asteroids, nearly incinerated in volcanoes, and has out-piloted pirates. But political espionage on Earth is more dangerous that anything he's encountered before, and he's completely ill-equipped for such delicate matters. Now he must figure out who to trust and who to eliminate, or it will mean his freedom, the safety of forty thousand desperate colonists, and the lives of his friends.

Buy link: Amazon

***And Derick has more to share. Take it away, Derick :-) ***

I’m one of those people who hangs on to certain holidays, sometimes beyond what’s fashionable. As that includes St. Patrick’s Day, I’m wishing you all the Luck of the Irish! Which, after studying history, seems more an insult than a well-wishing. Nothing against the Irish, of course. It’s a stab at the weather and a certain fungal species. And at England. My Irish luck is better than average, as I had ancestors leave there for America. That’s not slightly unusual, except they did so five years before the potato famine. I once had a chance to go there, to see what they gave up, and I was captured by the beauty of Ireland. I tried to recreate my emotions in a scene from my novel, Houses of Common. The main character is helping Irish scientists with last-minute preparations before they leave for a newly terraformed planet.
   Ranyk watched the hundred or so Irish scatter like leaves on a river. Several were on bikes and motorcycles, two buses left several minutes apart, and a half dozen cars rattled over the bumpy dirt road. It looked no different than the satellite views when everyone went home for the day. A casual observer wouldn’t guess none were ever coming back to work.
   The old and cracked asphalt cleared of people, but not of the moss growing wherever untrodden. Dry leaves stirred over the damp, moldering piles from autumns past, resisting the stiff breeze off the ocean in the lee of the curbs. The Irish air smelled of spring and reminded him of the holos and history he’d devoured on the flight over. It all summed to a sense of melancholic beauty, of star- and creed-crossed love. Of mortal loss and of fortune sought and gained but never brought back from over the sea. He imagined it smelled of well-rosined bow and the varnish of a fiddle, of sweat laced with alcohol from dancers who for a moment had beaten back the dreary darkness of a long and hungry winter.
   
There. My reason. I may not always get humans, but I empathize with Éire. Torn between cultures. Intellectual offspring my opiate, solitude from my own people my foreign oppressor. If I live to be old I’ll not see a more achingly beautiful, morosely serene place than this.
   Ranyk hoped Meagher would be slow to return, or perhaps wouldn’t at all. For a moment, Ranyk thought he might stand and absorb the surroundings, so much more potent firsthand than through all he’d studied. Sweet to recollection like the sound of Uilleann pipes played on a hill beyond view. Sweet with the bitter aftertaste of absence.

 Yeah, I miss that place.
So did one of those ancestors of mine. Mostly because his fiancé was still there. He came to the United States to get a job and a place to live, then worked until he could get passage to go back for her. My sister nearly swoons over that story, and I have to admit I’m a fan of a good romance like that, too. I’ve never had to give up so much or work so hard for anyone as Great-Ancestor Dalton did, and that’s why his love story is more fantastic than mine. The frigid North Atlantic Ocean and two nineteenth century versions of the TSA couldn’t keep him from his girl.
Besides the victory of coming together in a good romance, the hot and steamy stuff is another powerful draw. Unless it’s like that episode of Friends. One of their moms wanted to be a romance writer, and visited the apartment to get everyone’s feedback on her manuscript. As they read, she warned them about her poor typing skills. Warned them just before they asked what exactly the male character writes about with his throbbing pens. And where does the woman house her heaving beasts?

If I had to pick between writing an adversity-overcoming romance and erotica, I’d prefer to write the first. Primarily, I want my kids to read what I write by age 14 without me squirming from discomfort. As importantly, it’s also about how the brain works. Erotica cuts through the higher brain functions of the frontal cortex and goes straight for the reward pathway. Of all literature, it blazes the shortest trail between words on a page and dopamine release in the brain. Fun for the reader, but that isn’t my goal. I want to create a romance between the reader and my characters, and the long-term relationship kind. The intellectual connection of a good friendship. One where victories feel meaningful to the reader, and a sudden Joss Whedon-style death of a character really hurts and makes the reader hate me just a little. I want the frontal cortex tied up and stuck on imaginary people.
Two of my characters share a past that will remain a secret until book three, but here’s a peek at them in Houses of Common.


   Qi opened her mouth, but the words of explanation she’d rehearsed seemed ill suited now. She wiped a tear off each cheek, one of humiliation, the other of anger at herself. More would come, and they were for Sean. Knowing this would hurt him, she had decided to change the plan and get rid of the storage cylinder. She had only needed to explain, and it would have gone well. But that chance had been stolen.
   No, not all these tears are for Sean. How many years of fertility do I have? Is there enough time for him get over his issues? Is there enough of his own lifetime for that?
   She turned to speak to him. “Sean . . .”
   “Qi,” he replied, cutting her off with a calm voice as he rounded a concrete barrier in the parking garage. “I am really angry and I don’t want to say anything hurtful. Can you give me ten minutes?”
   The sadness and hope for forgiveness in Qi crumbled. “No, Sean. I have needed to say this for two years, and you’re going to listen without interrupting.”
   “Hold on,” Sean retorted, his eyebrows furrowing.
   “Shut up, Kolyenko. I brought the cylinder so I could give it to you and apologize. Until you, I’d never met anyone who tired of the chalky red soot of Mars as much as I did. I never met someone willing to say ‘Screw you, complacent social mores. I’m going to make this world a better place.’ I’d never met anyone who could wield genius and deviousness like an artist’s paintbrush.”
   Qi paused for a breath and Sean started to speak, but he wasn’t quick enough.
   “I don’t know if it’s from mainland China or a tradition of the China Mars Republic, but men there tiptoe around courtship and marriage and the bedroom and their children like they’re afraid of the smallest error. I wanted a real man. Why do you think I was the only single person of all my friends? I wanted an intellectual equal. I wanted a man who was both cocky and sexy and knew it. I wanted to spend my life with someone who would make me feel sexy, even when he knew I was too sick or tired for him to get any. And when I was up for more, who’d do better than a quick and selfish bang. I wanted a man who was willing to be domesticated, wanted to be, and could do it without losing his masculinity.”
   This time Qi paused long enough, and Sean took his eyes off the road to give her a slightly self-conscious smirk. “You wanted a fully brilliant, mildly arrogant son of the Black Sea, the heartthrob of every Ukrainian girl in the neighborhood.”
   “You are so poetic when you talk about yourself,” she said sarcastically.
   “Narcissism is only a problem when someone complains. Then it’s their problem.”
   Qi tugged at her seatbelt and turned to face him more fully. “Sean, your aversion to starting a family is a failure that’s ruining your success everywhere else.”
   “Can we discuss this when I’m not driving as fast as I dare because a crazy health care worker filled me with death-threat paranoia?”
   “No. Now. Partly because of a crazy health care worker’s story.”
   “Qi! Who in their right mind would think I should be a father?”
   “Me. Because you can.”
   “So you decided,” he said, his voice more annoyed than angry now, “to take matters into your own hands.” He took a breath, and looked at her apologetically. Then at the cylinder. “I never had a clue. How long were you setting me up to steal a sample, Qi?”
   “Two years. I lied about your contraceptive pill being a turnoff. Then I made up the mood swings about my pill. Your condoms never actually bothered me.”
   “I should have known,” Sean said. “Female condoms are great specimen bags, and no one actually likes them.”
   “So, do you still need ten minutes of cooling off?”
   “No. I’m just surprised. It’s not like you to avoid discussing things, but apparently I destroyed your other options. I’m angry I didn’t notice what you were doing.”
   “How would you?” Qi replied. “I was naked.”
   “Yes. Yes, you were,” Sean said with happy nostalgia on his face.
   “Focus, Sean,” she said through unmoving lips.
   Sean took an exit from the freeway at the last minute, just in case someone was following them. The tires squealed and a car honked behind him, but Sean was still smiling. “Then stop reminding me of your candlelit curves. Especially the one where—”
   “Having a child together,” she interrupted, straightening in her seat after the jostling, “is the deepest expression of love we can have. And the most frustrating and rewarding. I’m not ruining that by dragging you unwillingly along or by doing it to hurt you. So here.” She shoved the cylinder into his chest. “I may never forgive you if I die childless, but it’s better than you never forgiving me and resenting our son or daughter.”
Hopefully this St. Patrick’s Day the only cylinders people shoved at you were mugs of green beverages, followed by offers to drive you home.
Cheers!

Mr. Dalton is a professional student who has taken an occasional hiatus for such frivolities as teaching high school science, residential construction, and treating patients as a physician assistant. When not speaking of himself in the third person, he hangs out with his wife and kids and a smart-mouth turtle. He's also planning a mountain biking trip on the moon.

Social Media Links:
Author on Goodreads:
Zazzle (t-shirts)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Pardon the Dust :-)

Hey friends, readers, and peeps who've just plain been wonderful to me. I wanted to share a heads up to wear your construction hats. A bit of dust will get stirred up as work is being done to bring a little change to Publishness-land.

Thanks for your patience while it's all going down :-) And because of that, here's a pic of my Chipmunk as a bumblebee from when she was like 3 or 4 lol!!

Oh...my...cuteness!


Friday, March 21, 2014

Confessions of a Working Writer Momma

TGIF!

As a working single mom who writes, Fridays and the weekend mean something a little different.

The work week is filled with hours of playing my part to earn my peon's wages followed by dedicating energy and time to my precious Chipmunk and caring for her needs with activities like helping with homework, preparing/cooking/buying breakfast and dinner (she has lunch during school, thankfully lol!!) plus the other parental things like chatting about school. Then comes the nightly battle/stalling game/shaking-of-my-head that is bedtime.

Then I get to slip into my fantasy world indulging in the passion that brings me so much joy (and anxiety during release days lol!!) for a few hours each evening, with the occasional interruption by my silly Chipmunk who should be asleep lol!

Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are more like my make up days. Make up for missed sleep. Make up for laundry, dishes and cleaning left undone for a while. Make up for time missed with friends. Make up for me-time - I think you get the point. This requires as much of a balancing act as my work week. I suppose this is where my confession comes in.

Every now and then, I wonder if the sacrifice is worth it. The thought is often brief because I also try to wonder what it would be like if I didn't write. I actually shudder at the though of not writing. I don't mean just typing. But rather, the storytelling and story sharing. Maybe the day will come when my fantasy of writing can become my everyday reality as a career. Until then, I'm holding strong to being a Working Writer Momma, one blessed with a great community of other writers who understand my passion for writing.

Thanks for taking my confession and I hope your weekend is fantastic :-)

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

One Word Wednesday

One Word Wednesday
What one word comes to mind when you look upon this picture?
Me? The one word that comes to mind is...
Anywhere
*I can't help feeling the potential of this open stretch of road and am curious for the "anything" around the bend.*

Monday, March 17, 2014

Shining the Light on Ali Cross

Every now and then, it's good to take a moment and shine a little light someone else's way. Today, I'd like to shine the light on author Ali Cross, who also goes by Alex Banks.

I'd like to invite each and everyone to click here to check out her various books. While you're there, click on her blog and share a comment or two. If you'd like, tell her I sent you, but that's not necessary. You'll find visiting The Dojo is a great experience.

She keeps it humble, true and busy between taking care of house and family, writing, publishing, and helping to organize great events like the recently much talked about and applauded IndieRecon.

Go on, enjoy yourself. And have a smiling good day :-)

Friday, March 14, 2014

TGIF

Nuff said :-)

So what do you have planned for your weekend? Mine shall include much needed unwinding :-)

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Ghosts of Aquinnah by Julie Flanders

Julie Flanders is a wonderful author. How do I know this? Because I had the pleasure of reading Ghosts of Aquinnah and discovering that her writing and story telling work hand in hand to give readers a wonderful and engaging experience.

Here's the description from Goodreads (ADD TO GOODREADS)
A brilliant flash of light transcends through time.

Another freezes a cloaked figure within a frame of salty mist as waves crash against a rocky shore. Her harrowing expression shadows the beacon to a pinprick.

By the next blaze, she is gone. Only the lighthouse remains.

Hannah’s eyes blink in step with each heartbeat. Images of her deceased parents and Martha’s Vineyard explode like firecrackers inside her mind.

She shakes her head.

For weeks this eerie woman dressed in nineteenth century garb has been haunting my webcam, but tonight she stared into my soul.

Why? ...

Who is she? ...

Casting aside months of research on historic lighthouses, Hannah drives to the coast and boards a ferry.

What is the strange connection she has to this mysterious woman suspended in time?

Hannah finds out.

But, it’s not at all what she expects ...

Hannah unravels a century old murder

Buy from Amazon by clicking here.

My thoughts:
I loved Hannah. She had a certain amount of spunk once she found herself enraptured in discovering more about the ghostly figure from the webcam.

What she discovers in the course of her research was far more than I expected. I enjoyed the ride as I turned each page to see what new thing occurred or befell the characters.

There's love. There's mystery and so much more. I really enjoyed it.

So, how far would you go to bring about love's redemption?

Monday, March 10, 2014

Springing Forward and THE EIGHTH DAY

I bid thee farewell to that one hour lost. I doth enjoyed having thee around and wasn't of a keen mind to lose thee. But the benefit of more sunshine when I get off from work will simply have to placate me lol!!

Speaking of losing or adding time, how about having an extra day in the week? That's exactly the kind of thing brilliant author Dianne Salerni tackles with her MG novel THE EIGHTH DAY.
Here's a description from Goodreads (ADD TO GOODREADS):
In this riveting fantasy adventure, thirteen-year-old Jax Aubrey discovers a secret eighth day with roots tracing back to Arthurian legend. Fans of Percy Jackson will devour this first book in a new series that combines exciting magic and pulse-pounding suspense.

When Jax wakes up to a world without any people in it, he assumes it's the zombie apocalypse. But when he runs into his eighteen-year-old guardian, Riley Pendare, he learns that he's really in the eighth day—an extra day sandwiched between Wednesday and Thursday. Some people—like Jax and Riley—are Transitioners, able to live in all eight days, while others, including Evangeline, the elusive teenage girl who's been hiding in the house next door, exist only on this special day.

And there's a reason Evangeline's hiding. She is a descendant of the powerful wizard Merlin, and there is a group of people who wish to use her in order to destroy the normal seven-day world and all who live in it. Torn between protecting his new friend and saving the entire human race from complete destruction, Jax is faced with an impossible choice. Even with an eighth day, time is running out.

My thoughts:
I'm so glad I had a chance to receive an ARC and read this story. It kept me engaged from the first page to the last.

Jax makes the kind of decisions and mistakes you expect of any thirteen-year-old boy, especially after making one weirded out discovery after another.

There were a few times I wanted to flick Riley on the ear but even he got a pass from me once Dianne wove his back story into the scheme of things.

The mythos is wonderful and I absolutely love it. This is a great novel for both boys and girls and for the MG reader at heart. I wish it a great amount of success when it's released, which I believe is in April 2014.

So, what would YOU do if you had an extra day in the week?

Friday, March 7, 2014

Let the "Funishment" Begin

~ ~ ~ Chancellor Baltimore goes by many titles: geek-extraordinaire, sex fiend, self-proclaimed sexpert, and now…Master Baltimore. In this installment of Confessions of a Sex Fiend, it isn’t just Chancellor confessing. There’s so much to discover when Mallory shares her point of view. ~ ~ ~

This episode is all about impact:

The impact of joy
The impact of pain
The impact when joy and pain crash together…adding in a little “funishment”

And we get to experience the journey of sexual dominance and submission as Chancellor and Mallory open the door upon their “just another Tuesday session.”

Let’s enjoy this tale of a sex fiend as Chancellor continues to break the rule that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

Shhhhh! Don’t tell anyone. It’ll be our little secret…

Buy Links: Smashwords | Amazon US | Amazon UK

Here's a snippet to whet yon appetite:

~ I never thought of such a thing before, but, for the first time in my life, I imagined grabbing a chunk of her auburn hair from behind, yanking her to me, tilting her head back and crushing her lips with my own like a miner in search for gold. The very thought sent a vein of heat warming everything between my legs.

“Come with me,” she offered. “And I’ll show you.”

Her hazel eyes glinted like the devil. And yes, I took the deal.

Mallory started me off with some of the basics of the lifestyle. I quickly found myself taking to the lessons like a dying man savoring his last meal. The bindings, the toys, the punishments I learned to dole out; they were all good for scene play. But I learned more about myself, more about trust and being trusted…which is also why Tuesdays with Mallory meant so much. ~

For those who can, I'd really appreciate a tweet or FB Share

Tweet: #Readers, Confessions of a Sex Fiend: Retreat Bound is now available! Get your quick fix now :-) http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IT5HRO0 #erotica Plz #RT

FB: Let the "funishment" begin! Grab your copy of Confessions of a Sex Fiend: Retreat Bound by Rayven Godchild. It's a steamy, quick read to stir up your imagination...and a little more along the way :-)
Smashwords - https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/414678
Amazon US - http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IT5HRO0
Amazon UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00IT5HRO0
#erotica #steamyreads #grownandsexy @RayvenGodchild

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Bitten by Romance, Smitten with Confessions and IWSG

It's the first Wednesday of the month. Many of you know what that means. Some of you are looking like, "Whaaaa???" Well, to catch you up, the first Wednesday of every month is Insecure Writer's Support Group day. We share, vent, converse on the feelings - good and not so good - about being a writer. Click here for the deets and for more blogs to visit, comment and share in the IWSG-love.

Today, I'm going a bit more positive. Writing as me, under my name of Angela Brown, has been a dream come true. It's that first level of "Success" I like to acknowledge. Now if I can just get my sales to match my fantasies, that would be AWESOME! But I digress lol!

Writing and publishing this year as Rayven Godchild has also been a thrill. And today, Rayven is over at Bitten by Romance sharing about things, you know, Rayven-like. Please stop by to say "Howdy!"

I'm also getting uber-excited with the countdown drawing close on the next Confession being released. This Friday, RETREAT BOUND, part III of the Confessions of a Sex Fiend series, will be available at Smashwords and Amazon. Woot!

So yeah, I'm not in the place of Nirvana or even heaven. I'm earth-bound in my reality. But as an author, publishing things I'd love to read, I have to admit I'm in a happy place.

Whether joyful or otherwise, how are things going with your writing journey at this time?


Monday, March 3, 2014

The Word on RB's Release Date

So, I got one vote for NOW! and the others for "the earlier the better" when it came to answering this question"

"Should RETREAT BOUND be released on March 14th or March 7th?"

And, March 7th it is. Be on the look out for another Rayven Godchild release.

Episode III of Chancellor Baltimore's Confessions of a Sex Fiend series.

Chancellor Baltimore approves of this message :-)