Tuesday, January 20, 2015

I survived!

Last week was terribly, terribly crazy! The day job is working on converting to a new program, so that meant working through last weekend... Both Saturday and Sunday... At the office... Full days... So this Saturday was my first day off in 12 days.

Doesn't that sound crazy? That's not the end of it. My husband was away on a business trip all last week, so it was just me and the toddler struggling to survive. Somehow, I managed to make it through with both of us still intact. I survived on cereal and corndogs, cuz... Well, I can't cook. The boy lives on chicken nuggets anyway, and those are easy to throw in the oven. It did get scary there for a little bit cuz I had to break into my second box of cereal by the end of the week, but luckily my husband was able to catch an earlier flight home, so imminent crisis averted.

There's another conversion weekend coming up again in February... /sigh... I just need to sell more books. Working these 12 day work weeks is a real strain, mentally and physically. It's messing with my writing time, too. It drains me and zaps all the creative energy.

Well, I'm back at it this week. Currently I'm working on a wide release of After, tentatively scheduled for next month, once I'm released from Amazon's KDP Select. Oh, and I guess I have a little bit of news for you. Katlynn Rose has published her first novella! Woot Woot!

Thief: The Dove in the Darkness

So yes, that's my new pen name, and my first shot at writing romance. I'm still not sure how I feel about romance just yet, it's definitely out of my comfort zone, but there it is in case anyone would like to give it a go! Thief is currently on sale for $.99. As always, if you read it and enjoy it, please leave a review!

Short update today, but I haven't fully recovered from last week yet. Have a wonderful week, everyone!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

30 Books

And we're back from the holidays! I hope everyone had a wonderful time and are well prepared for the New Year. It's getting cold down here in Texas! (and by cold, we mean in the 30s. How you people live up North is beyond me.)

My time working on other projects is over, and my focus is now turned completely toward The Phoenix Curse. I'm working on formatting the three parts into one complete book, as well as getting some more work done on Dreamland. Many many edits lie in front of me for what's already been written, and many many words still need to be put down on paper. It's become a bigger project than I ever expected it would be, but I'm happy about that. Dreamland - Part One will be completely written before I turn to another project. I'm also expecting this book to be a bit heavier than After by the time it's all said and done.
We all do this, right?
I'm preparing a little treat for all my wonderful Phoenix fans to be released at the end of February, so there's a little something to look forward to while the book is in the works. Yay! I hope that's exciting news for everyone.

I guess it's time for a little 2014 recap. Last year, I never got down and made any resolutions. I vagued it up, and vagueness is the cause of many a failed resolution. The only solid resolution was to complete NaNoWriMo, which I was able to accomplish with a little room to spare. Not much, but a little. My second resolution was to 'lose weight." Okay. I did that. And then I promptly gained it right back. That does not count in my book, so I'm done with any type of resolution to lose weight/work out. Not to say I'm giving up on that, I'm just not going to confine it to one small time-frame of the year that's normally forgotten by the end of January.

But I did accomplish one of my vague resolutions. "Read more." Check!! Okay, so most of it was listening to Audible books, but THAT COUNTS considering I don't have time to sit down and actually read as much as I would like. Some books were read, but Audible was available to give me a link to all the wonderful stories that I would otherwise be deprived of. Thank you, Audible!

Total count: 30. Resolution for 2015: 35.

I'm not exactly reaching for the stars here, but I'm keeping it reasonable. Also, you have to consider that nearly half those books from last year were the gigantic tomes called The Wheel of Time. Geez, but Jordan was not shy on his word count. And half of those were re-reads, but they still count! Except Crossroads of Twilight. I just read Leigh Butler's re-read on that. For those of you that have actually read the series, I'm sure you understand. Crossroads of Twilight was not counted in my total.

That pretty much sums up my actual resolutions from 2014, but what I consider one of my biggest accomplishments was not even a resolution. Yes, I finished my first real book and got everything published, and figured out how to start on a completely different story that will one day be another best selling novel (right?!?), but there was something else I did that was a major lifestyle change for me. It might seem small, but for as much as I loved it, it was a huge change in my life.

I gave up caffeine.

I was never a big coffee drinker, but for years the only liquid I consumed was Diet Coke, and large volumes of it. First thing in the morning, I had to have my Diet Coke. I'd be late for work because I'd stop by McDonalds just to grab one. Not exactly a good habit to have and very unhealthy. Stimulants do not go well with someone that has hypertension, so I dropped my Diet Coke habit in October and haven't had any caffeine since. I, however, switched to caffeine free Diet Coke for a while, but that is still not healthy, so I've even cut most of that out and have switched to water.

Water is boring and gives me heartburn, but I feel a difference, people! Dem fancy doctors and health nuts might actually know what they're talking about! (no offence to fancy doctors and health nuts intended.) So my vague resolution for 2015 is 'drink more water.'

And I think that about sums up my thoughts on this topic. I'll be back to posting a little more regularly (expect at least 2 posts a month), and there's a small announcement coming later this week, so be sure to check back!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Thirst of Corben - By Johi Jenkins

I was recently gifted an ARC of Thirst of Corben from +Johi Jenkins, and it was absolutely delicious! For those of you that are into The Thirst Within series, you won't be disappointed with this one.

I don't think I'm giving anything away by saying this book is about Corben's past, and how he came to be who and what he is. I can't express enough how very, very interested I was to learn more about Charlotte, and this novella pretty much answered most of those questions, although the big ones are still hanging out there. As this mostly takes place in the past, there isn't a lot revealed about the Tori/Charlotte mystery, nor the effect it has on Corben and Thierry

There was, however, quite the twist at the end that left me ready for the next book. I'm not sure if Johi has a publication date ready yet for Thirst of Corben, but here's a link to her blog and facebook. Also, here's her author page for good measure.

And now I'm waiting as patiently as possible for the 2nd installment of Thirst. And Resurgence. I also loved that book.

The next on my list to read is The Lost Centurion, by +Monica La Porta , and my audible is glued to The Way of Kings, by +Brandon Sanderson. Gotta get some variety in there.

As for project list, I'm putting the final touches on Thief, so if anyone wants an ARC, please shoot me an email at drjpublishing@gmail.com. (Remember this is romance!) It will be ready before Christmas, and I have a few copies to spread around.

After that, Dreamland. Expect a teaser early next year!


Friday, November 28, 2014

NaNoWriMo and Black Friday


NaNoWriMo is DONE!! Woohoo!! I finished day before yesterday, and that feeling of accomplishment was just as wonderful as I remembered. I know there are some amazing writers out there that were able to actually finish their manuscript, but I was quite happy to end with my 50k words. I would say I'm only about halfway through the actual story, though.

Day 13!
I know I was quiet through-out November. I was actually really hyped about this year's NaNo and had a pre-NaNo post all worked up in my head, and then I was struck by a horrible migraine type headache on Halloween. BALLS!! It was horribad. Now, I've suffered from migraines all my life, and this was not one, but it was damn close. I've been getting these types of headaches a lot recently, but this one topped the charts on suckage. I remember the first one I got was during my first NaNo in 2012. It put me down for a few days then too. (see the chart to the left for historical accuracy.)

It did not occur to me until 2 years later, that the headaches might be caused by my blood pressure medicine. Brain child, I am not. Anyway, I dropped those meds and went to the Doc for something else. As soon as I did, I instantly felt better. The new meds aren't dragging my energy levels down either, so I feel better than I have in a long while.

Look at that beautiful, smooth climb of words,
LOOK AT IT!!
So NaNo pretty much went off without a hitch this year. I wrote consistently every day, paced myself well, and finished with an awesome push right at the end. Look at that last push right there at the end! 4000 words in one day! I had just hit one of those scenes that I couldn't wait to get to, and the story just flowed. It's funny how some days getting 1000 words down is like squeezing blood from a turnip, and others it's a flood of thoughts that my furiously typing fingers are just trying to keep up with.

I am really starting to love this story line and my awkward little seraph. I can't wait to finish it and get it out there, but that will probably be late in 2015 by the time I get to it. Don't worry. Dreamland will come first.

So, yay!! Maybe this next year I can give Camp NaNo a shot and actually succeed. For now, I'm working on a small project for December and also plan to send some ARCs out of my novella. If anyone is interested in that, just drop me an email at drjpublishing@gmail.com; subject ARC THIEF.

Meanwhile, After - Part Three is ON SALE TODAY for $.99!! This quite possibly could be the last time I'll be listing it for sale because I'm seriously thinking of pulling it from Amazon KDP Select. It's just not giving the results I want, and I'd like to open the books back up to other platforms. I guess it did okay in their Kindle Unlimited program, but it's not pulling the numbers that part two did, so I'm a bit disappointed.

Anyway, tell your friends! Grab it now! Send it as a gift! yada yada ~insert more corny sales pitches here~ (I'm not good at marketing!)

Black Friday Only!

He's such a cute wittle puppy!

And that's all I have for now. I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving, have a safe Black Friday, and hang on to your butts! The holiday's are in full swing!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dead Trees - By Eli Constant

My mind is wandering down crazy paths today! I'm so close to finishing the editing for my alter ego's novella, and all I want to do is write the prologue for Dreamland. I have it all sketched out, and I'm eager to jump in! Maybe I"ll get that started today once I hit my editing goals. Sounds like a plan to me!

So, recently I was gifted the audio book Dead Tress by +Pamela Lorence. She saw my review on That Ghoul Ava, and highly recommended +Eli Constant's book. Pamela also does the narration for Dead Trees and it is superb!

Dead Trees was definitely not what I expected from an apocalyptic story. It opens six months after the disintegration of society, although we do get bits and pieces of information that fill in what happen during that time. Most of the book is told in Elise's POV, but there are a few scenes that aren't, and I'll call those guest POV's because it's not the norm. This is Elise's story.

As a mother, I related to Elise on a lot of levels. Not the kick-ass warrior part, but the mommy part. (I've already faced the fact that I would be a goner in the first 48 hours of an apocalypse if Buffy or the Winchesters don't come save me,) Elise is smart and willing to do what it takes to not only protect herself, but her two daughters. Now, as a mother, as soon as I found out she had a toddler in the car, my stress level shot through the roof. There were some very tense scenes that I ended up sitting in my car after the drive home just to listen to them. I had to know what happened!

The monsters in this book, or maybe I should say beasties, were so well done that I actually had nightmares about them. Yay for my over active imagination!

Pamela Lorence did an awesome job bringing Elise to life, and there were a few times I actually teared up while listening. I immediately bought book 2 for my kindle once I finished, which I've already started. Let me tell ya, book 2 starts out super creepy. It might take me a little while to get through this one since I have to find the time to read, but maybe I can catch some downtime this weekend. It is the calm before the NaNoWriMo storm.

So there's my Dead Trees review, and an audible review of a full five stars will accompany it. I may take the rest of the week off blogging while I wrap up the novella. Unless something else exciting comes up, I will catch you guys next week!


Friday, October 17, 2014

Next on a very special That Ghoul Ava - T.W. Brown

Got my coffee, got my music, got my dreams of going full-time author... I think I'm set.

Yesterday was an excellent, and I mean excellent editing day! I think it may have been a record because I finished up three scenes. However, this is a stand alone novella, and much different than trying to keep track of all the characters and plot lines for The Phoenix Curse. Hopefully I'm learning though. At the pace I'm going, the romance novella Thief should be sent to my editor before the end of the month, and then Katlynn Rose will be born! Dat exciting!

Also, romance with a happy ending is such a refreshing change of pace than the desolation of humanity and death.

Kinda like the difference between That Ghoul Ava and the Dead series by +Todd Brown (I totally just figured out how to do that, BTW.) Dead is a very dark, very gritty, very curl-up-in-a-fetal-position-and-cry set of books, while That Ghoul Ava is the polar opposite. Ava is fun and funny, a light read full of comedy and references. Glorious, glorious references that make me feel a part of something bigger. Man, do I love it when I get a reference.

Anyway, Next on a very special That Ghoul Ava was just as great as the preceding novels. It was a bit more serious that the others, but still managed to make me laugh out loud in parts. Ava (and the reader) gets to learn a little bit more about the history of ghouldom and just how awesome Ava could become, but everything isn't all flowers and butterflies. Ava is forced to make a life(unlife)-impacting decision with some pretty serious consequences either way. I can not wait for the next book! Hell, I was so excited for this one, I couldn't wait for the audio book to come out, so I snagged the e-book.

The mythology and lore is excellent in this series, and I really need someone out there to make a dedicated beastiary for Ava's world. Seriously, if you enjoy some light-hearted, supernatural fun, grab Ava's first adventure and give it a shot. It's reasonably priced, and well worth the time/money invested to see if you like it.

And there is my un-spoilory review. Do we like unspoilory reviews, or should I start going straight up... "OMG THIS HAPPENED AND I WAS LIKE WOW, AND THEN THIS HAPPENED AND IT WAS ALL... WOAH DUDE!!!" ?

I don't know. I'll think on. I hate getting spoiled to things, so I want to spare people that. I was a full season behind on the Walking Dead and I still haven't finished Breaking Bad, so for a while there, I was tip-toeing through reddit and Facebook like it was a minefield. Still got spoiled.

For now though, it's time to get some egg-rolls, listen to another chapter of Dead Trees, and enjoy the upcoming weekend, free from the 8 to 5 workday problems. Enjoy your word of the day, cuz that's what I'm going to be doing alllllllll weekend!

re·lax·a·tion
rēˌlakˈseiSH(ə)n/
noun
  1. 1.
    the state of being free from tension and anxiety.



Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Rise of the King - R.A. Salvatore

So, one of my most-beloved stories just released another book on September 30th, Rise of the King by R.A. Salvatore. Highly anticipated!!

The stories of the Companions of the Hall, and pretty much every other character Salvatore has created in this world, are tots my favsies. And I'm talking of ALL my favsies. Yes, I love A Song of Ice and Fire, and Wheel of Time, but nothing has touched my heart like Drizzt Do'Urden, and the wide cast of characters that has passed through his life. If you follow my blog, you're probably well aware of that fact since I tend to gush every time there's a new release.

Well, gushing might be somewhat limited today at least.

Now, a couple months ago, I blogged about how I felt about the e-book pricing war. (If you care to read it, it's here.) And in that post, I stated there were very few e-books that I would spend over $10 on. At the time I wrote that post, Drizzt came to mind, as well as Winds of Winter. Those might have been the only ones I would have broke the bank on.

Turns out I was wrong. I was very surprised to find that on the day of release, the kindle version of Rise of the King was still set at $15.49!

Nope!

Call me cheap, whatever, but nope. The hardcover is only $2 more, and I'm much more willing to pay a higher price for a physical copy, but an e-book? And I love my Drizzt, I really do, but I'm also aware that the price has to drop eventually. So I looked at the page with disappointment, ranted with my husband a little bit (because he loves Drizzt stories as much as I do) and we both decided we would wait.

Until I remembered I had audible credits... (insert cheesy grin here)

So instead of reading an over priced e-book, I got to listen to the talented Victor Bevine narrate yet another stellar performance. He does such a wonderful job that I know which character is speaking without having to be told, and he makes the action scenes so intense! If you like fantasy/audio books, I recommend grabbing Homeland or The Crystal Shard. I don't see how anyone could be disappointed in the stories and performance.

And now the spoiler free review.

It was... okay. The book wasn't bad by any means, and there were some very stand-out action scenes that I enjoyed, but this book was pretty much all set-up. A slew of new characters get introduced, and we find out where everyone is, and what's going on, but not much beyond that. It's actually what I would expect from a mid-series book, so now I'm dying for the next release!

If you love Drizzt and Co., this is definitely a must read, but if you are riding the fandom fence (and it kills me to say this) a thorough synopsis might do just as well for you. And a diagram. Hell, I think I need a diagram of all the new names being tossed around. And a map. Anyone got a map?

Not the best review I've ever given. If I could ever get back onto Goodreads, I will leave my spoilery review there, but unfortunately, with the little time I have, Goodreads is one of the things that fell behind. I'll be back there someday, I promise.

Next review will be on the new Ava book, and then Dead Trees! See? I'm trying.

I've also got my NaNoWriMo month all planned out, and the edits for my novella are coming along nicely, for me anyway. I still struggle with that. I may have started an origin story for one of the Phoenix Curse characters and... well... first drafts come along A LOT quicker than editing.

Anyone want a little more background on Seth??

So much to do and so little time... And Dreamland is simmering on the burner.

I better get to it!