June 14, 2014

Kelly Ryan~ Author Extraordinaire

Hi blog followers! Allow me to introduce fellow author, Kelly Ryan. She's got fantastic new stuff in store for you!

Okay, Kelly...my blog is yours...



First of all I want to thank J. M./aka Jeannie, for letting me stop by her blog for a little chat today. Is she an awesome lady or what? Thanks again Jeannie!

I recently read a book entitled, Daily Rituals: How Artists Work, by Mason Currey, which contains the daily habits of many famous artists, authors and other creative types. It was a fascinating read and it really made me think about my own daily writing rituals. First I noticed that there tend to be two types of creative people, those who wake up early and have a very strict routine when it comes to their work, and those who don't. Haruki Murakami for instance gets up at 4 am when he is writing a novel. I certainly do not have that dedication, or I just physically require more sleep than that man does.

No, I definitely fall in the category of creative people who work at different times on different days, depending on their mood and their other responsibilities. I suppose I could write at 4 am every day, but I would be useless the rest of the time and I have a day job to be awake for. So I carve out writing time around my schedule, but I do work every day and I suppose I do have some rituals, don't we all have some if we stop and think about it.

When that grand time comes, be it morning or late at night, when I get some alone time with my computer I have to get the internet surfing out of the way. I check and answer email, working on my blog and webpage, see what is going on over on Facebook. I have to do this before I write or I will get distracted during.  Then I can get to my writing.

 Sometimes I have a half hour before work. Sometimes I have two hours at night. If I am really lucky I have both. It all depends on the day, but hey Jane Austen wrote her novels little snippets at a time and then at night as well. If it worked for her it can work for me too, right?
It most certainly can!


I guess all writers and creative types have different rituals and habits, but we all still put out work the best we can. Someday I hope to be lucky enough that writing is my only job and maybe then I will have a set schedule to write and maybe it will improve my output, but until then I have my own process and it is working for me, writing little snippets one at a time a la Ms. Austen! The important thing is that I have the ritual of writing each and every day and that is all that it takes to be a writer!

Here's my latest creation:

 


Blurb from Taking Pleasure Where You Can:

John never thought that he would be the same after Pearl Harbor, then he set eyes on Imee and everything changed.
Ever since Pearl Harbor John had become a shell of a man, not able to move on from the trauma. One night out with the guys and one woman were about to change everything.

Excerpt:
Joe seemed to know everyone, and everyone seemed keen to be near him. It made it much easier for the quiet by nature and still healing John to slowly make some friends. Once the drinks started flowing, he even began to loosen up a bit. He missed hanging out with guys, telling stories, joking around, and laughing. His Captain had been right; this was what he needed and what his friends who had passed on would want. He was beginning to feel alive again, and it felt good. Then he caught sight of her.


Kelly Ryan, aka Sheri Velarde, lives in New Mexico with her fiancé and two dogs, 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 among other genres of romance. 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.

June 1, 2014

Awkward

Say awkward out loud. Doesn't that word sound awkward? Yesterday, I discovered if I said the word  awkward enough times, it didn't resemble a word at all! It just reminded me of a deranged crow. Giggling at the thought, I kept repeating it. Then...

my neighbor peeked over my privacy fence.

I laughed so hard I nearly wet my pants. It was in those precarious moments of near-dampness that I realized I AM AWKWARD. Other than the fact I act like an idiot in public, here's proof of that deduction:




I am clumsy...
...and clumsy on top of clumsy.






I do weird stuff for no reason....
...and find joy in doing so.





I blurt stuff like: 

 Libraries remind me of explosions from a fairy's imagination.
Yeah, that sounded better in my head.




That's all I'm divulging...for now. People have a challenge understanding me as it is.

Can you relate? If so, what are some of your awkward traits?




Blog comments welcome...
...even awk-awk-awkward ones.









May 31, 2014

Bittersweet

  It's not often I post a book review on my blog, but this book deserves a spot.


This coming of age story grabbed me from the first paragraph. I'll leave the plots a mystery--because there are quite a few. I loved the constant twists, and how they tied securely, leaving nothing unfinished at the end. That being said, you must read this book!

 The author, Miranda Beverly-Whittmore, gives the main character, Mabel Dagmar, a wonderful voice throughout this story. Anyone who stood on the outside looking in as a young adult will relate to Mabel, and anyone who didn't will gain insight into the life of someone less fortunate.

This story delves honestly into how one's actions, no matter how well intended, can twist into tragedy. Speaking of intentions, there are evil ones too, leaving me with my mouth agape. Not one character, be it Ev, her family, or even Mabel, was predictable...or ended up how I pictured in my mind.


The author has the gift to lull the reader in a soft, unassuming way, and then shock them with surprises throughout the book.

 I love the twists and turns along the gravelly path in Bittersweet. I adore the cottages, each with a personality, each dubbed after a flower--and each with bolts upon the doors, even the bedrooms and bathrooms. Why, in such an idyllic, private setting of the Winslow retreat was there a need for this? This was the earliest hint of the secrets waiting to be discovered within the pages of Bittersweet. 
Mabel is the narrator in this story, with her perspective fluctuating between her disdain of her under-privileged past, and that of her wealthy roommate, Ev Winslow—and the desire to be like her.

   "I looked at the picture of the gathered Winslows above my desk, although it was as silly an enterprise as opening the menu of a diner you've been going to your whole life; I knew every blond head, every slim calf, as though her family was my own. "~excerpt from Bittersweet

 The descriptions the author pens are amazing. I could smell the dank forests, feel the shock of water against my skin, bask in the warmth of sun, smell the food in the dining hall…and shiver at the whisper of secrets nagging to be uncovered.

 The rhythm of the story soothed, shocked, and spattered my imagination, littering my mind with the constant, yet not overdone, twists and plots throughout this story.

 I loved every moment I spent reading Bittersweet, and highly recommend this book.  

*  I received Bittersweet from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. 

May 25, 2014

5 reasons an author has the right to throw a book

I know throwing a book at someone is wrong, but sometimes I'm tempted to do just that. There's things people should avoid saying to a writer.

 People have actually spouted these things to me:



"Oh! You write books? Can I have a free copy?" My mind pings through comebacks like a pinball machine.  Oh! You paint portraits,build homes, write music or dance for a living? Can I have whatever you create at no cost? However, I hand them a business card and smile. "You'll find the prices very reasonable.Thanks for your support!"



 "Must be nice to play on the computer all day writing books." Yes. Someone actually said this. I had no response. None. Sometimes I just have to walk away.
"I should write a book too. It's pretty easy, right?" Okay, writing is a frickin' craft. Like a fine piece of furniture, it must be polished on a regular basis. Can you pick up a paintbrush and miraculously create a masterpiece? Can you sit at the piano and instantly create a stellar hit? Can you put on skis and join the Olympic team? Please, don't tell a writer their craft is easy--unless you enjoy dodging flying objects.



"You're published? Then why are you working here?" Artists--most of them anyway--have a day job.
When my books hit the New York Times' best seller list, I'll quit my job. In the meantime, I need to eat.








"How much do you make writing?" My response: "Why do you ask?" This shuts them up every time. Besides, no matter what the royalties add up to, I first and foremost write because it fulfills me--unlike my day job.






That being said, let me add, I'd NEVER throw a book at someone...

...it would ruin the binding.







Photos courtesy of freedigitalcom contributors:
Stuart Miles, Tungphoto, Photoknock







March 9, 2014

I think I can...I think I can.

I want to run away on a train. . 
Seriously.

I just received an acceptance letter from my publisher, Breathless Press. My novel (a.k.a. my baby) needs my undivided attention. So...I applied for a writer's residency on Amtrak. Why? Because it's hard to do edits while plugging my ears. 
lalalalala I can't hear you!





I have a noisy home; barking dog, autistic antics, and blaring game shows are just a few of the distractions I deal with on a daily basis. (Not to mention my three teenagers wrestling on the couch next to me as I write this post.)

 I've actually considered taking a sharpie pen and writing DO NOT DISTURB on my forehead when I'm in my writing mode.

So, you see, running away on a train is probably a better choice. Amtrak will keep me on track with my edits!  What a great idea. Run away from it all for a couple of days. I entered my information on the Amtrak site. Now comes the waiting part....

and waiting...and waiting....




You know what I just realized? I used the words 'run away' and 'train' in the same post.
Didn't quite think that one through.



Would you apply for a writer's residency on a train? Why or why not?





Images courtesy of the following artists at FreeDigitalPhotos.net:
 Ambro, imagerymajestic, photostock,and Teeratas

November 5, 2013

Hot Halloween Heroes Giveaway Winners


STOLEN TIME: Jean MP
TIMELESS VALENTINE bn100
FOR ALL TIME: Meghan
BASKET OF HOPE: Desiree Reilly

Let me know what ebook format you want in the comments. :)

Thanks for your participation.And may I add....




I do happy dances for reviews on Breathless Press, Amazon, Goodreads and anywhere else you may feel inclined to post one.

November 1, 2013

Santa's Elves and Other Elven Things


Spirit of elves:
Santa's elves evolved from a belief in European countries that good and bad spirits were active during the 12 days of Christmas with the help of Clement Moore's title, The Night Before Christmas. Here's forty-nine more facts about the holiday: http://tinyurl.com/ckf3xq4

And here's another fact--There's a holiday read coming out soon!


In the spirit of promoting a fellow author, I'm honored to present Decadent Kane's cover reveal--oh and what a cover! It sparks interest without even reading a blurb. However, here is a short one for those of you who wish to know more:

An old family secret draws Ribbon into an Elven world while Draven is forced to find a way to drag her back home to save Christmas magic.
Ribbon of Darkness is set to release December 13th 2013

Click here and sign up for the newsletter to be notified of this and other Decadent Kane publications. 

Here's a few more "click-links" to delve into elves...and learn more about author, Decadent Kane:

October 29, 2013

Hosting Heavenly Hot Halloween Heroes




I love to delve into the magical aspects of my imagination. I've written about feisty faeries, petulant pixies, sexy sorcerers, and time-traveling tavern tarts.
Okay, so I alliterate to the point of insanity. Sue me.


September 30, 2013

Thoughts After Submission

Get your mind outta the gutter. I don't mean it that way. 

I'm talking about submitting a manuscript.