Charlotte Returns - Review

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The biggest thing I took away from Charlotte Returns is that the true measure of a man is not in his physical wholeness, but in acceptance of his situation and making the most of it. Mark Steele resonated with me in a big way. His ability to forgive and move beyond his handicap makes him a star in my book. 


Charlotte is a complex character, who has done much in her life and has experienced much disappointment. However, she realizes her weaknesses, accepts herself—shortcomings and all—and is able to rise above her past and walk into what Mark is offering now. 

I enjoyed this story of two mature people who, after many years, reconnect and are able to support and love each other. Kudos to Angelia Vernon Menchan for producing another great read!

I purchased Charlotte Returns on Amazon.

WPK is Coming on May 16!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Sometimes in the middle of an ordinary life, love offers a fairy tale. You are cordially invited to celebrate family, friends, laughter, even a few tears, as cute, furry, four-legged pets play matchmaker and lead their owners to happily ever after in these 8 new, never-before-published sweet romances by New York Times, USA Today, and National Bestselling authors. 

Mimi Barbour, NY Times & USA Today Bestselling Author – Love of My Life 
Abandoned puppies, an unexpected elopement, and a dangerous fire enliven this captivating romance when two delightful characters share a duplex. 

Donna Fasano, USA Today Bestselling Author – The Wedding Planner’s Son 
Tawny, a newly engaged workaholic, flees to Ocean City, Maryland, and meets a man who could change her thinking about life…and love. 

Denise Devine, USA Today Bestselling Author – The Encore Bride 
Jenny Landon’s heart was broken when her husband tragically died. Can she put the past behind her and learn to love again? 

Raine English, USA Today Bestselling Author – A Little Romance 
When a dog left in her care disappears, will Taylor Wayne find the missing pooch and redeem herself in the eyes of Mr. Right? 

Cheryl Harper, USA Today Bestselling Author – Plus One Basset Hound 
In the fourth grade, Audrey promised the last of the bad Blanchards that she’d marry him someday. He’s back in Baxter, Louisiana, but for how long? Planning a rehearsal dinner to save the day may turn to love. 

Cindy Flores Martinez, USA Today Bestselling Author – Moonstone Beach 
A bridesmaid loses her coworker's Yorkie in Cambria, California, before her best friend’s wedding. The groomsman, who was her high school crush, helps her search for him, sparking new romantic feelings between them. 

Mimi Milan, Award-winning, Bestselling Author – Scent of an Angel 
Tanner has seen some serious battles, but this army veteran’s defenses go down when he meets a beautiful grad student and her determined dog. 

J.L. Campbell, Award-winning, Bestselling Author – Blindsided 
When his bride abandons him at the altar, Gordon Raimes is devastated. Will Caroline continue to keep secrets, or will she trust him with her heart? 



Pre-order your copy of Wedding Pets & Kisses at lrd.to/wedding-pets-kisses. Don't delay, do it today! Release date is May 16, 2017.

IWSG Anthology Released!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

It’s that time of month again when the members of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group share their insecurities and encourage each other on their writing journey. This month, we have a number of announcements and exciting exploits, so stay with me until the end of this post.

Question for May: What is the weirdest/coolest thing you ever had to research for your story?

Not sure I have anything that qualifies. The extent of my research usually involves gunshot wounds and various medical conditions. If I had to choose I’d say the effect of a gunshot wound to the intestines. What is your answer to this month's question?

If you haven’t yet joined the IWSG Book Club, do it now. Our first discussion will be on May 19, 2017. Hop over to the club on Goodreads and see what’s happening with the group.

And now for the biggest piece of news - yesterday, the 2017 IWSG Anthology was released!

Hero Lost: Mysteries of Death and Life - An Insecure Writer’s Support Group Anthology

Can a lost hero find redemption? 

What if Death himself wanted to die? Can deliverance be found on a bloody battlefield? Could the gift of silvering become a prison for those who possessed it? Will an ancient warrior be forever the caretaker of a house of mystery? 


Delving into the depths of the tortured hero, twelve authors explore the realms of fantasy in this enthralling and thought-provoking collection. Featuring the talents of Jen Chandler, L. Nahay, Renee Cheung, Roland Yeomans, Elizabeth Seckman, Olga Godim, Yvonne Ventresca, Ellen Jacobson, Sean McLachlan, Erika Beebe, Tyrean Martinson, and Sarah Foster. 


Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these twelve tales will take you into the heart of heroes who have fallen from grace. Join the journey and discover a hero’s redemption! 


What early reviewers are saying …

In this marvelous collection of speculative fiction, we journey through twelve wonderfully written tales to find out if the tortured hero can be redeemed. - Christine Rains, author

The authors have done us a favour by all being darned good at their craft. Recommended for fantasy fans. - Gordon Long, author

Don’t forget to grab your copy!

Website - Lost Hero Anthology
$14.95 USA, 6x9 Trade paperback, 226 pages
Fantasy, Freedom Fox Press
Print ISBN 9781939844361 eBook ISBN 9781939844378
$4.99 EBook available in all formats

Find at Goodreads
Purchase print at Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Books-A-Million
Purchase eBook at Barnes & Noble / iTunes / Kobo / Amazon / Amazon UK / Amazon CA


A Taste of Sweet Persuasion ...

Friday, April 28, 2017

The day is finally here! Today, Gary and Yolanda will have the opportunity to share their story with you. 

This novel has been in the making for a couple of years now and thankfully, these characters and I agreed to put the lid on things late last year. If you love romance and the new adult set, then Persuasion in right up your alley.

Blurb

School. Music. Blogging. These are Yolanda Charles' priorities. She likes life simple and is content to hang around her step-sisters. That's until she admits she's attracted to Gary Cheung-See, a web developer who exemplifies the strong, silent, and surly type.

Each time a bug hits her website and social media accounts, Gary helps with solving her issues. Despite his good looks and brilliance, Yolanda is undecided about her feelings for him and suspects he might be the culprit trying to ruin her life and reputation—no matter what her heart says.

Gary is from a dysfunctional family and refuses Yolanda's help with bridging the gap between himself and his father. When a life-threatening illness hits the person he cares about most, he is forced to reassess his stance on forgiveness, while Yolanda has to decide whether Gary is friend or foe and if she can trust him with her heart.

Persuasion is priced at $1.99 for the weekend. Get your copy before the price goes up! 

Sample Sunday - Persuasion

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Persuasion will be released in another few days, so here's a sample of what's coming. This New Adult Romance is the third in the Sisters-in-Love series.


Excerpt

We exchanged a stare that had me imitating Gary's action. My teeth now dug into my bottom lip. I wanted to get closer to him and finally moved when he blinked. I pulled back and threw another glance toward the doorway.

"Um, that song. What are you singing again?"

He touched my chin a second time. "D'you know You are the Sunshine of my Life?"

I nodded, wearing a wide smile. "Stevie Wonder?"

He didn't answer, but when I played the opening chords of the music he closed his eyes and began singing.

I came close to stumbling over a couple of the notes because his voice fascinated me—a smooth tenor that made me hold my breath for fear I'd miss any of his words.

By the time he was at the end of the second verse and into the chorus, tears had gathered in my eyes. I didn't want to move anything other than my hands, which were already in motion, for fear I'd embarrass myself.

When the last note faded, Gary brushed my cheek with his thumb, wiping my tear away. He looked at the doorway and my gaze followed his.

Uncle Xavier leaned against the door jamb with his hand resting on Emile's shoulder. A wistful smile came to Uncle Xavier's face, and when Emile's mouth opened, his father clapped a hand over his face and turned him toward the passage.

"What's that about?" Gary asked.

"This is just the weirdest thing," I said, shaking my head.

He frowned and tipped his head. "What?"

"That's Da—Uncle Xavier and Mom's song."

He widened his eyes and then frowned. "For real?"

I nodded. "Yeah, now and then they go soft in the head and he sings it to her and they get all weird on us."

"Weird like how?" Gary asked, unknotting his brow.

"You know," I said, looking at him sideways.

He shook his head and turned his eyes toward the ceiling. "If I knew I wouldn't be asking."
I hunched in on myself. "They go all lovey-dovey and act like kids."

Gary laughed and slipped his arm around my shoulders. "Sounds like my parents. That's their song too. One of them anyway."

I tipped my head back to look at him. "Seriously?"

"Yeah, that's how I learned it. He was always singing it to Mom."

"That's pretty cool." I grabbed his wrist. "Is his voice anywhere as good as yours?"

My question ended Gary's good mood. "I don't know and—"

"You don't care. I know."

His response disappointed me, but I shouldn't have expected anything different.

He rested both hands on his knees and kept his gaze stuck to the floor.

I wanted to slap him because he was being silly, but I didn't know how to point out his pettiness without being brutal. I'd forced him to come over here and now he was in a funk, which I didn't know how to get him to shake off. I was fresh out of ideas, but figured I'd be honest with him. 

Going on instinct, I laid the guitar aside and rested my head on his shoulder. "I know you don't want to talk about your father, but could you leave your bad mood for later? I need the Gary who was here five minutes ago."

I stared at him until he turned his head. A tiny smile pulled at his lips and bloomed into a full-blown grin. "You're something else, you know that?"

"So people keep telling me."

We didn't say anything for a bit, but because I couldn't help myself, I went back to the subject Gary had made taboo.

Pre-order at $0.99 lrd.to/persuasion

Taffy - Intriguing Historical Fiction

Taffy is the first historical novel I've read in a while and the experience was outstanding. The writer's language is lyrical, which made me savor the telling of the tale. Taffy's story takes place in a rich and vibrant world I didn't want to emerge from whenever I picked up my Kindle.

The book's protagonist, Taffy, is a young woman who has had many bad experiences thrown at her, including marriage to a lecherous older man.  Her losses are many, but her strength is undiminished as she learns how to tough things out.

Her return to her hometown and subsequent reunion with the man she intended to marry unleashes a host of plot twists that makes Taffy an absorbing read. The eternal struggle of good versus evil challenges Taffy, who's gifted with second sight, and puts her at risk.


The characters are well-drawn and colourful, the setting realistic, and the storyline filled with shocking twists. After travelling with Taffy and Roam to the end of their romance, I couldn't help hoping Ms. Harrison will continue their story. If you like sweeping tales that take you to a different time in history with realism and heart, then Taffy is a must read.

I purchased Taffy on Amazon.

Cover Note: Great representation of the story. 

Maski: Broken But Not Dead

Thursday, April 20, 2017

I'm happy to share this psychological thriller from Joylene Nowell Butler. Be sure to pick up your copy!

Maski: Broken But Not Dead
By Joylene Nowell Butler
Psychological Thriller
$4.99 eBook ISBN 9781939844385

An IPPY Silver Medalist!

To the Breaking Point...

When Brendell Meshango resigns from her university professor position and retreats to her isolated cabin to repair her psyche, she is confronted by a masked intruder. His racial comments lead her to believe she is the solitary victim of a hate crime.

However, is all as it appears? After two bizarre days, the intruder mysteriously disappears but continues to play mind games with her. Taught by her mother to distrust the mainstream-based power structures, and with her stalker possibly linked to a high level of government, Brendell conceals the incident from the police. But will her silence keep her safe?

Then her beloved daughter, Zoë, is threatened and Brendell takes matters into her own hands. To save Zoë, Brendell searches for the stalker and confronts not just a depraved madman but her own fears and prejudices.

Purchase Links:
Barnes & Noble - http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/maski-joylene-nowell-butler/1125994868?ean=2940154062012
Kobo - https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/maski-broken-but-not-dead
iTunes - https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/maski-broken-but-not-dead/id1216518807?mt=11
Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/Maski-Broken-But-Not-Dead-ebook/dp/B06XQMGMHW/

“Joylene Nowell Butler gets straight to the story, taking you from one happening to the next and keeps you turning the page.” - Martha A. Cheves, author

“A psychological thriller filled with suspense, action and drama...” - John Bell, 93.1  CFIS-FM: Prince George, BC

“Riveting and beautifully written. You won't be able to set it down.” Judith S. Avila, author

Joylene, Métis, is the author of Dead Witness, Broken But Not Dead, and Break Time. She and her husband and their two cats reside in Canada for the summers and Nayarit for the winters. They believe life should be an adventure. https://cluculzwriter.blogspot.com/


IWSG News!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Today is another IWSG post day and boy do we have news for you! On the first Wednesday of each month, writers everywhere share their insecurities and give encouragement to others. Our co-hosts today are Christopher D. Votey, Madeline Mora-Summonte, Fundy Blue, and Chrys Fey!
  
April Question: Have you taken advantage of the annual A to Z Challenge in terms of marketing, networking, publicity for your book? What were the results?

For me, not really, but I have had the benefit of exposure through other writers who have featured books as their A-Z Challenge theme.

The IWSG book club has decided on its first read, and you have until the end of May to read it. If you haven't joined the IWSG Goodreads Book Club as yet, do so now!

In May, the 2017 IWSG anthology will be released - Hero Lost: The Mysteries of Death and Life. Twelve fantasy stories featuring a lost hero will be on sale for your reading pleasure. Don't forget to follow the Lost Hero blog here

On July 27, the IWSG Twitter Pitch - #IWSGPit will take place. The list of agents and publishers is growing, so don't miss this opportunity to pitch your work to industry movers and shakers.

Here's hoping you have no insecurities today, but if you do, what are they?

The B, C, & D of Blogging from A-Z

Bark (As in Barking up the Wrong Tree) If you've been writing for a while, you would have seen many fads come and go. To name a few, we had the Zombie Apocalypse, the New Adult Frenzy and The Vampire Rage. Some of us are still writing around these subjects, but zombies and vampires have been done to death. 

It's tempting to saddle up and get on the band wagon when it seems best-sellers are everywhere, but writing to a fad is not a smart move. By the time many of us decide to hop on for the ride, the wagon is way on the horizon and there's no point in chasing it.  

Better to hang in there and write what appeals to you and what is on your heart. We may be prone to chasing rainbows, but being moody creatures, we writers do better when we get immersed in what satisfies our souls. The money and kudos may not be rolling in, but peace of mind is more important. 
 What say you? Have you ever been caught up in chasing the new thing on the block? 

Confidence Have you ever read fiction that appealed to you so much,  you wish you had written it? You may even have wondered if you'd ever write prose as crisp and ripe with meaning. Yep, that's happened to me a time or three. 

But guess what? We're all special in our own way and programmed to put down on our words in a style nobody else can. That's pretty awesome when you think about it. Now, if you have big dreams and plans, it isn't beyond the realm of possibility that one day you'll write awe-inspiring stories. 

The key to being able to start what you finish is to know where you’re going. Once you know the path your story will take to 'The End', your skills as a writer will take you there. The important thing is to know you can get to that point. Without the conviction that you will succeed, it's unlikely that you'll make it as a writer. Know your skills, what you're capable of doing, and let confidence keep you on the road to your definition of success. 

Discipline & Deadline Dates Once you've gone past your first article or book, you begin to gather momentum. Whether you're with a traditional publisher or you have chosen to self-publish, discipline must be part of your life. This is particularly important if you're treating your writing as a business. 

Having set a publication schedule, it is critical that you put in the work to achieve your goals. When you sign a contract and agree on a manuscript delivery date, you look unprofessional if you don't deliver. With self-pubbing, you set your own goals, but you also seem unprofessional when you set publishing dates and don't deliver. Unavoidable delays do happen, but it is important to be at your computer putting in the work if you expect to see returns from your business. 

Are you setting goals and sticking with deadline dates? Does it become easier with each project you undertake? 

How Not To Lose Your Sanity While Being A Writer

Saturday, April 1, 2017

It's hard to believe it's April already, but April it is and the Challenge is with us once more. I'm making things easy on myself this time by talking about staying sane on this writing journey. It's been challenging for me lately and so here I am writing about How Not To Lose Your Sanity While Being A Writer, so here goes:-

Attitude. It is said our attitude will determine our altitude. I'm a firm believer in this saying. If we believe we can, then we will. What we achieve in life will be in line with the effort and energy we put into the things we undertake.


Writing is no different. When I decided I wanted to be a writer, I started by reading everything I could on the craft, and practiced what I learned. I wrote articles and short stories and moved to novels. That was in 2004. Today I've published more than two dozen books.


I believe if we want something badly enough, we'll do what's necessary to get it. So while there will be delays and detours, stay positive and keep going.

Do you have the right attitude for your writing journey?