Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Cover Reveal: Death in Advertising by Laura Bradford


Inside the Book:


Title: Death in Advertising
Author: Laura Bradford
Publisher: Lyrical Underground
Genre: Thriller/Suspense
Format: Ecopy 

When Tobi Tobias decided to open her own ad agency, having to moonlight in a pet shop wasn’t part of her vision . . . of course, neither was murder.

Sometimes when opportunity knocks, the door you open leads to a closet. That’s certainly the case for Tobi, whose weekends spent cleaning cages in her best friend’s pet shop may soon be over. She’s just landed her first big break—Zander Closet Company needs a catchy campaign slogan ASAP, and Tobi thinks she’s got the right hook to knock ’em dead: “When we’re done, even your skeletons will have a place.”

But when a real dead body topples out of a showcase closet, she’s about to discover there is such a thing as bad publicity. To save her fledgling business and not get killed by the competition, Tobi takes on a new pet project: solving the murder. But with a stressed-out parrot as the only witness to the crime, Tobi will really have to wing it to put the cagey killer behind bars.
amazon

Meet the Author

laura1
As a child, Laura Bradford fell in love with writing over a stack of blank paper, a box of crayons, and a freshly sharpened number two pencil. From that moment forward, she never wanted to do or be anything else. Today, Laura is the national bestselling author of several mystery series, including the Emergency Dessert Squad Mysteries, the Amish Mysteries, the Jenkins & Burns Mysteries, and the upcoming Tobi Tobias Mystery Series. She is a former Agatha Award nominee, and the recipient of an RT Reviewer’s Choice Award in romance. A graduate of Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, Laura enjoys making memories with her family, baking, and being an advocate for those living with Multiple Sclerosis.

For More Information Visit Laura’s website.    
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Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Cover Reveal: Game of Lies by Amanda K. Byrne



Inside the Book:


Title: Game of Lies
Author: Amanda K. Byrne
Publisher: Lyrical Underground
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Format: Ecopy 

The ties that bind, the vengeance that severs…

 Cass Turner, promising UCLA student, is gone. All that remains now is Cass the rogue assassin. Her target: all those who’ve sworn their loyalty to Isaiah, a man so ruthless Cass won’t find peace until he’s destroyed. Yet Cass’s brazen killing spree has driven a wedge between her and the man she loves. As a lieutenant in LA’s largest crime family, Nick Kosta has his own reasons for wanting Isaiah dead. But if Cass continues to play by her own rules, she'll have to choose between Nick and getting even.

When her one chance at the ultimate revenge is snatched away, Cass's world begins to fall apart. Now they’re going to play by Nick’s rules—even if it means betraying her trust. Because the danger to their lives, and their future, is far from over. But with the body count rising, and a target on Nick’s back, Cass will have to find a way to unearth the lies that surround the Kostas and find the killer in their midst...before it’s too late.
amazon

Meet the Author

Amanda K. Byrne
When she’s not plotting ways to sneak her latest shoe purchase past her partner, Amanda writes sexy, snarky romance and urban fantasy. She likes her heroines smart and unafraid to make mistakes, and her heroes strong enough to take them on.

If she’s not writing, she’s reading, drinking hot chocolate, and trying not to destroy her house with her newest DIY project. She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and no, it really doesn’t rain that much.

For More Information Visit Amanda’s website.    
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Book Blast: Beautiful Belly Dancers Adult Coloring Book & Win a free copy!


We are pleased to be hosting Richard G. Lowe Jr.'s BEAUTIFUL BELLY DANCERS ADULT COLORING BOOK Book Blast today! Leave a comment on this blog and you could win a free copy!  Winner will be selected on August 31.  Only U.S. residents please.


About the Book:

Title: Beautiful Belly Dancer Coloring Book
Author: Richard G. Lowe Jr.
Publisher: The Writing King
Pages: 110
Genre: Adult Coloring Book

What could be better than an adult coloring book of beautiful belly dancers? These gorgeous ladies have performed all over the world, and now their images are presented here for your coloring pleasure. All pages are printed on one side to make your coloring easy.

For More Information

  • Beautiful Belly Dancer Adult Coloring Book is available at Amazon.

EXAMPLE COLORING PAGE: 




About the Author

After spending over 33 years in the computer and information technology industry, Richard Lowe Jr. decided to take an early retirement to pursue his dreams of becoming a professional writer and published author. Richard is a leader in the computer industry, serving as Vice President of Consulting at Software Techniques and Beck Computer Systems before settling down as Director of Computer Operations at Trader Joe’s. During his twenty-year tenure at that esteemed company, he focused on computer security and preparing for the possibility of disaster.

In addition to creating hundreds of articles for the web and blogs, Richard actively works as a professional ghostwriter. In that role, he has completed books on a wide variety of subjects including memoirs, business volumes, and novels. Because of his in-depth background in software management and computer security, Richard has ghostwritten a number of major books in those areas.

Additionally, Richard has published books of his own. His first two volumes, Safe Computing is Like Safe Sex and Real World Survival Tips and Survival Guide, respectively touch on the subjects of computer security and how to survive emergencies and disasters. Richard has also written and published a series of short eBooks on the aspects of freelance writing, including blogging and ghostwriting. Other published books include How to Plan a Party and How to Surround Yourself with Beautiful Women without Being a Sleazeball. 

An avid adventurer, Richard has been a photographer for much of his life, with a focus on nature, scenic, performance and event photography. He has done everything from hiking in dozens of national parks throughout the country, to photographing various unique festivals and events, such as the Labyrinth of Jareth Masquerade Ball and the World Mermaid Awards Convention. He is well known in the Renaissance Festival and Belly Dance communities, having photographed over 1,200 dance events and 400 festivals. For several years, he photographed the Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena, California.

Richard is currently working on a large number of short Kindle eBooks on a wide variety of subjects. Beginning in 2016, the first of a ten volume series of Science Fiction novels will be published.

One of Richard’s passions is to use the power of words to educate people on human rights. He believes the world will be a better place when human beings are treated with the full respect and dignity they are due.

For More Information
 





Monday, August 29, 2016

Interview with 'Fairly Safe' Deborah Ann Davis



DEBORAH ANN DAVIS has been writing since she was assigned to keep a Journal in her 5th grade English class. She began to look around for writing inspiration. Lo and behold, she found her world was full of funny stories just waiting to be told. As she grew older, occasionally she could manipulate one into some school assignment, but it never occurred to her to pursue writing, not even when she discovered her flare for telling stories at college parties.

After a string of college majors, she realized she could have a captive audience EVERY DAY in the public school system. As it turns out, teenagers love to laugh, and what could be more entertaining than Biology, Earth Science, and Environmental Science? Then there's the added bonus that once kids know you like to laugh, they want to make you laugh.

Go figure.

In addition to Writing, she is also an Educational Speaker and a Certified Personal Trainer. She taught for 25+ years, although somewhere in the middle of all that educating, she stepped out of teaching for 6 years to do the Mommy Thing, and run the office for their family construction company.

Even though they had followed separate paths, Deborah reunited with, and married her childhood sweetheart, twelve years after their first kiss.  Together they coached their daughter’s AAU Basketball Team, which swept States two years in a row. (Yay!) Then, for several years their daughter and their money went to college.

They currently reside on a lovely lake in Connecticut. She enjoys dabbling with living a sustainable life, writing novels for her Love of Fairs series, dancing, playing outside, and laughing really hard every day. She promotes increasing the amount of movement throughout your day via Wiggle Writer posts on Merry Meddling, her blog at www.DeborahAnnDavis.com. Follow her @DeborahAnnDavis.

Remember, you can do anything if you set your mind to it— including becoming an author at any age— but it’s way more fun if you are grinning back when the Universe smiles down on you.
For More Information
About the Book:

When Mistaken Identity collides with Secret Identity, who wins?

JACOB HAS COME A LONG WAY FOR AN ORPHANED FOSTER KID. He has a mentor, a great job, and has finally fallen in love. Granted, she mistook him for a stalker when they met, but every
relationship has its little problems. Unfortunately, for the past few years, as the object of his affection pops in and out of his life, she has refused to share any personal info, like where she’s from, or her real name. Regardless, Jacob is ready to take their relationship to the next level. Now, if only he can locate her so he can tell her.

CASEY’S FAMILY IS IN THE WITNESS PROTECTION PROGRAM. Safety has to be their only priority. Their cover has been blown before, so Casey knows at any given time they could be forced to disappear again. Obviously, a shy young man with hopeful eyes cannot possibly be added to the mix. You cannot build a relationship like that. Now, if only she can stop thinking about him.

JACOB’S AND CASEY’S WORLDS UNEXPECTEDLY COLLIDE when Jacob inadvertently helps hide her family. Exposed to their 24-7 vigilance, Jacob realizes he must come up with a plan to keep them out of harm’s way, because this time if Casey disappears, she will be taking with her Jacob’s heart, and his hopes of finally having a family of his own.

For More Information

  • Fairly Safe is available at Amazon.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.


Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that Fairly Safe has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning?  Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

I was marooned on my couch with the attention span of a gnat due to a bout of Lyme disease. Exhaustion and pain made it impossible to do anything, even watch TV. I could pretty much handle three-minute songs on the radio, although my mind would drift. And then my imagination would take over. For example, That’s Not My Name, a song by The Ting Tings, created an image of children jumping on a bed, singing the song at the top of their lungs. As I grew stronger, I added a twist that would contribute to the bed owner’s outrage at the jumpers. By the time I was able to return to teaching, I knew how that situation came to be, and how it was going to end. I wasn’t able to connect the two until summer arrived with its elusive Free Time. I took full advantage, and when I returned to school the following year, I had a rough draft of my first book, Fairly Safe, almost completed.


Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

Who knew writing a book was so easy/hard? As a Science Geek, it never occurred to me to consider writing… easy for the creative types…hard for me. Surely the overly dramatic stories I used to make up to songs when I was a kid didn’t count. As it turned out, it was easy to create Fairly Safe. However, it was my editor, Kate Richards from Wizards in Publishing, who made me regard the crafting and polishing of prose as skills, and like any skill, had to be learned. She completely challenged my concept of what good writing was. That was hard because I already questioned the audacity of my deciding to write a book in the first place.

My advice to new writers is to go for it, but keep your old, unpolished work. It’s a testament to your evolution as a writer. I look at my original manuscript, with all its corrections, and think, “Look how far I’ve come.” It’s a great feeling.


Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

I self-published Fairly Safe after taking a class on self-publishing from www.authorems.com. Who knew publishing is so involved? ISBNs. Copyright. Hiring Freelancers. They covered it all. I just followed their instructions. Self-publishing is not a sprint. It’s a marathon.


Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?
One of the reasons I self-published Fairly Certain, my first book, was because my traditionally published friends told tales of having to wait 18 months for their book to be released. I’m not so good at waiting. I figured I could have my book ready to go in a couple of months. Oh, I was so naïve. I spent so much time getting my book published and trying to figure out marketing, without realizing it I had stopped writing for almost a year.


Q: What other books are you working on and when will they be published?

I have two projects currently (I’m making up for lost time). Fairly Obvious is the third in my Love of Fairs series. Fairly Safe and Fairly Certain have been so well received that I’m quite excited about it. All three books contain different characters, all of which are combinations of my teenage students, that wonderful quirky blend of vulnerability and bravado.

My students also gave rise to my second project, Girl’s Guide To Good Guys: The Power Of Being Patient And Picky. This workbook for teenage girls is a tool to help them realize their own value. They get stuck in a negative loop because they’re afraid to be alone, afraid of being unpopular, and afraid they’ll never find a good guy. The series of challenges in the workbook help teenage girls become self-appreciating and independent, to become comfortable with being single, to live their lives more fully, and to be patient and picky until they are ready for a healthy relationship. Got teen girls?

I hope to have both Fairly Obvious and Girl’s Guide To Good Guys: The Power Of Being Patient And Picky out in 2016.


Q: What’s one fact about Fairly Safe that would surprise people?

The story of Fairly Safe spans quite a few years. To orient my younger readers about the way people lived before their time, there’s a section in the back called What Was It Like Back Then? that contains random factoids, including minimum wage and types of phones. For my adult readers, it will be a peek down Memory Lane.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with Fairly Safe?

Relationships are everything. Jacob manages just fine by himself, but he doesn’t really come into his own until he forms relationships…with his mentor, with other students, later with his staff, and especially with Casey. However, it’s not until he is faced with losing these same relationships that he truly understands and acknowledges their importance.

Also, as a former Environmental Science teacher, my books always carry a little plug for recycling.
  

Q: Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

My advice to everyone, readers and writers alike, is to become Life Long Learners. If you are a writer, take class after class after class on honing your craft. You will never know it all, and inspiration can come from any direction.
If you would like information on when my books are coming out, visit DeborahAnnDavis.com where you can sign up for my newsletter, Merry Meddling.
Thank you for this opportunity.
Deborah Ann Davis


Friday, August 26, 2016

Guest post: "Avoiding an Epic Edit Fail," by Anna del Mar, Author of 'The Stranger'


Perhaps you’re considering hiring an editor to polish your manuscript. Maybe you’d like an objective evaluation of the work you’ve done. Perhaps you’re nearing your submission deadlines, or you’re getting ready to self-publish your novel, or you’ve already sold your manuscript and now you’re about to meet your in-house editor. These are only a few ways in which you may find yourself working with an editor and all of them lead to same objective: To make your novel the best that it can be.

Whatever your reasons, working with the right editor can make all the difference in the world. The right editor will help improve your manuscript, but will also help you learn about your writing, assist you in identifying your strengths and weaknesses and help your writing reach the next level.

I’ve had the privilege of working with some outstanding editors. I’ve seen firsthand the impact that a great editor can have on my story. I value my editors immensely. But I’ve also met a lot of authors who’ve experienced epic edit fails. The reasons were varied and often personal, but in general, authors who had epic edit fails belonged to three categories:

1)    Writers who worked with editors who were not familiar with their genres and were thus a poor fit for the stories.
2)    Writers who didn’t vet their editors prior to beginning the process.
3)    Writers who never fully committed to the edit.

So three key points to avoid an edit fail:

Make sure your editor is familiar with your genre. You want someone who is active in the genre’s community, someone who knows the industry, who is buying and what they’re buying. You also want someone who is familiar with your market and knows your target readers. This is especially true when hiring a private editor. Remember: hiring a private editor is about improving and polishing your manuscript, but it’s also about putting your writing in the market’s context and understanding how you and your work fit into the publishing market.

Vet your editor. If you’re hiring your own editor, check references and make sure the editor you’re about to hire is legit at every level, educationally, yes, but also in terms of experience. I like to read novels that my editors have worked on, to get a sense of the kind of final product an editor can turn out. Most editors will edit a sample chapter for free. Take advantage of the offer. A sample editing chapter will give you the opportunity to evaluate the editor’s skills, her style and/or his areas of expertise. It will also give you a general idea of fit and how well—or not—you will work together. The best kinds of editors will tell you both, what’s right and what’s wrong with your story. He or she can also help you figure out a way to tackle the problems. If you’re writing commercial fiction, that last bit is super important. A top of the line editor saves you time and energy by lending you focus.

Commit to the editing process.  Whether you’ve hired an editor or an editor has been assigned to you, the process is wasted, unless you’re committed to it. There’s no point to having an editor if you are not going to take his or her comments into real consideration. Do yourself a favor and don’t throw the edit out the window by disregarding your editor’s comments.  If you find yourself reacting strongly to an edit, set it aside, cool down and come back when you’re able to look at the edit objectively. Then tackle the issues bravely, one by one, and don’t stop until you understand—really understand—what the editor is saying and how it impacts your story. Once you do that, you’ll find the horizon opens up and the changes come naturally. And remember, if your editor doesn’t get it, neither will your reader.

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ABOUT THE BOOK
When her sister runs away with a guy she met on the internet, a warmth-loving Miami architect chases her reckless sibling to Alaska and finds her life in danger from more than the elements. Only a stranger, a wounded warrior who is also Alaskan tycoon with a quarreling family as complicated as her own and no time for a lady in distress—let alone one who walks on her sleep—can save her from disaster. Together, two strangers from different worlds and opposite spectrums of the thermometer must unravel the intrigues that threaten their lives to chase after a new dream, together, in majestic Alaska. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Anna del Mar writes hot, smart romances that soothe the soul, challenge the mind, and satisfy the heart. Her stories focus on strong heroines struggling to find their place in the world and the brave, sexy, kickass, military heroes who defy the limits of their broken bodies to protect the women they love. Anna enjoys traveling, hiking, skiing, and the sea. Writing is her addiction, her drug of choice, and what she wants to do all the time. The extraordinary men and women she met during her years as a Navy wife inspire the fabulous heroes and heroines at the center of her stories. When she stays put—which doesn’t happen very often—she lives in Florida with her indulgent husband and two very opinionated cats.

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