Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

First, before we get into the greatness of Halloween, I just want to thank everyone who participated in the last week of the Last Call tour. You can find all guest post, reviews, interviews and giveaways here.

Now, my favourite, favourite!, time of year is finally here. I love Halloween. There is no better holiday, in my opinion. And yes, a large part of that is because I get to raid my children's Halloween candy, but even before I had kids to dress up and take door-to-door I still love the day. I really enjoy seeing the creativity behind the costumes that kids - and adults!- think of.

And, even though I'm a huge chicken who is scared shitless by the tiniest things, I love the spookiness behind it all and all that stories that people love to share and scare each other with. Halloween night always ends with me curling up on the couch after my boys are asleep and watching some horror flick that will have me staying up all night looking for masked murderers that are hiding in the dark corners of my room.

But last night I was going to have a fright night with a friend when I looked over my movie collection and saw the only "scary" movies I own are the Scream trilogy. And, let's face it, not so scary. I know I had more than that... and then I got thinking and realized no, I didn't. All the slash and dash flicks belonged to ex's. Yes, there is a reason why my shelves are bare of horror. *sigh* But, I do have all the seasons of Supernatural and, even though they have laid off the ghosts and ghouls lately in favour of angel wars, some of their first shows are on the freaky side. So I just might have to curl up with season one of Supernatural tonight.

That got me thinking of some of the movies I have seen that I will never watch again because they gave me nightmares for months.... Night of the Living Dead, Pet Sematary, The Grudge (my son can make that grinding whatever noise and I freak) The Ring (anything with something crawling out of a TV or mirror will get me every time) Poltergeist... Of course just as I'm writing that one my dog barks and scares the hell out of me! Oddly enough the "classics" don't freak me out: Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, Psycho.... And the thing is I like being long as there's someone to curl up next to and drag off to bed with me.

What are your top horror flicks that have you covering your eyes every single time?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

In the mood for some l-o-v-e?

Grab your favourite bottle of wine, your reader of choice, and shoo the kids away because look what is now available to order in ebook! This is your chance to sample a short story by an author who you may have not had the chance to read yet. And really, for 99 cents how can you go wrong? Yes, folks, 99 CENTS! The paperback is only $10.

Did I mention Season of Love is only available for a limited time? The sales will end January 31, 2012 so get your copy while you can!

A Christmas Proposal by Sherri Hayes -
Matthew Andersen knew he wanted to spend the rest of his life with Cali Stanton. Since she came into his life just five months ago, his world had completely changed for the better. With everything in their lives finally coming together, he was determined to make their first Christmas a memorable one.

Not the Same Season by Lindsey Gray -
Two broken hearts embarked on a holiday season in a way they never had before. Divorced Mitch had been badly burned by love, but was willing to take a chance . . . with the right woman. Hannah had lived everyday with the grief love had brought her that followed her everywhere. Can two hearts find love and heal each other during the most difficult season of the year?

A Christmas Kiss by Jennifer Schmidt -
Christmas Eve for Emma Callaway is just another night stuck at the office fetching coffee and being ignored by her workaholic boss Jarrett Mackenzie. But when a snow storm forces them to spend the night together Emma learns her boss isn’t quite what he seems. And when Jarrett finally notices his assistant the only thing he wants for Christmas is her.

Bone Deep by C. M. Smith - 
Matt Kulver never wanted a steady girlfriend. Being able to come and go as he pleased, not having to answer to anyone, and able to sleep around with as many other girls as he wanted was something he prided himself in. That all changed when the one girl who stuck by his side in spite of the jerk moves he would pull. When she, his best friend, starts to pull away, he's forced to face the truth.  This Christmas, Matt has a lot to make up for.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Eenie, meenie, miney... Moe?

I've been asked a few times how I think of the character names in my books, especially in Last Call. Out of all the names out there, how did I come up with Novalee? Well, I didn't come up with it. I heard it in a movie years ago and totally fell in love with it. Now, since I've convinced myself I will never have a girl, I needed to use that name somewhere; it couldn't just sit on a list unused.

You know that list of favourite baby names almost all women seem to have? They have more than one purpose. Usually they're a list of names that you would like to use for children. Since my baby days are over - okay, I hear the snickers..... I'm, like, 99.9% sure my baby days are over. Happy? - my  list of favourite baby names went from future children to future characters. And really, it's all the same thing since I feel like my characters are my children in a way. Very naughty children.

I now have two lists. One is of names that I really, really like but probably would never use on my own children because they're either too unique (IMO) or just wouldn't sound good with my last name. So those are the names that I use for my characters. Unique names are much more accepted in fictional books than real life it seems, and I can make up whatever last name I want to go with them. 

My other list are of names that I love and, despite saying I'm done having kids, I still can't get myself to use them. If I did and then had more kids I would feel weird using a name that I used on a character. Except for my current character's name, Kennedy. I adore this name, and even though I'm using it in book number two, I would still use it for my daughter in a heartbeat. But, I'm not having girls so moving on...

I also try to not use names of people that I know. That just weirds me out, too. I don't want someone I know to read my books and think, "Hey, she named this character after me," or after some mutual person we both know. And I try to stay away from names that are in popular books. The names used in Twilight? Yeah, there's a very good chance they will never be seen in anything I write because a person reads it and automatically thinks, "Oh, she got that name from _____".

Sometimes it takes me forever to think of the perfect name to use. If I have an idea of what the character looks like, or their personality, I need a name that I feel suits all that to a T. Other times a name just comes to me and it fits no matter what. I do try and choose something that I know I'll want to keep throughout the whole book and not want to change, because if I do change it then I have to go back and change everything about the character. And that is time consuming, not to mention a complete pain in the ass. But it's just one of my quirks.

Would you be surprised to learn my oldest son, Hayden, is named after a character in a book I read eight years ago?

So that just leaves me with one question: you've read Dean and Novalee's story. Are you ready for Memphis and Kennedy's?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What writing routine?

I know a lot people that have a certain routine they must follow in order to be able to write. Their outline has to be right in front of them, music has to be on, kids have to be asleep, they need to sit in a certain spot, they can only write from so and so time, etc... My question is how they hell do they do it?

Authors who can write with outlines and always know where your story is going to go, damn, I applaud you! I tried it once, and it went to hell and back faster than I could blink. Outlines and I do not get along, and honestly, I love it that way. I love not knowing where the story is going until my fingers hit the keyboard and it just takes me away. And I'm also very lucky that I work with such great people who don't need an outline from me or else we'd all be screwed.

I can can work with my kids running around and screaming bloody murder at each other. In fact, I tend to write better when they are around creating mayhem than I do when all is quiet. I can't write with music on, however, unless I'm writing a scene that requires a little musical inspiration. Otherwise it has to be off or I get distracted by singing along and before you know it I'm typing the song.

This one might be weird, but I have to have my hair pulled back when I work. I have no idea why, but I hate it hanging in my face when I'm writing. I can write pretty much anywhere, and at anytime (as long as the ideas are flowing) but the hair must be in a ponytail.

All my ideas seem to come while I'm in the shower. Seriously, I have done most of my best thinking in there. The problem? By the time I get out I've forgotten half of what I was thinking about.

I used to have to write - as in hand write - all my chapters before typing them on the computer. It was my way to do the first edit, but I just recently stopped that. I blame my new laptop that you really have to pry out of my hands at any point because we are now one.

Writing routines are pretty much like outlines for me. I don't have them. If I tried to have a routine I'm pretty sure I'd never write again just for the mere fact I hate putting myself on a timetable/schedule to write at this time, for this long, with no distractions, blah, blah, blah. I have two kids who I raise alone. My life is full of distractions and routines are shot to hell.

And you know? I wouldn't have it any other way.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Last Call Tour - Week One

So, the first week of the tour is now behind us. I know, I know, where are the daily updates? If you remember I said I'd try...and well, on a good week I barely have time to get on here. But this week with two sick kids, Kindergarten Halloween planning fun, Halloween planning in general and trying to get some writing done there just wasn't enough hours in the day it seemed. But a HUGE thank you to the bloggers who participated in this week: Amanda, Tyra, Krishna and Vicky! There obviously wouldn't have been a tour if not for all the wonderful ladies who signed up for it. If you haven't checked out the guest posts and interview hop to it! Don't forget there's also an international ebook giveaway for Last Call on all sites.

There's more fun coming in interviews, guests posts and, of course, giveaways, starting again on Monday. Again, the schedule tour can be found here

Also, if you've read Last Call and feel like leaving a review/liking/tagging it on Amazon or reviewing on Goodreads that would be great! Until next time...



Monday, October 17, 2011

Last Call Tour

First, can I just have a moment to do a very girlish squeal at seeing Last Call all over the web. *squeeeeeeeee* Ahem. Okay. I'm done. Maybe. For now at least. I am so excited to be doing this tour and I would like to thank everyone who is participating in it!

There are eleven stops along the way, and for each blogger participating they each have two ebook copies of Last Call to give away. Yep. That's right. Follow the blogs and enter to win a copy of Last Call. You can find the tour schedule here, and I'm going to try and have updates of every stop along the way posted on here.

Tomorrow, the tour kicks off with a review, interview and giveaway at She Who Blogs Behind The Rows 

I hope you can join us! It's going to be tons of fun.



Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Tis the season for Season Of Love

So who is excited for Christmas? I know, I know. Halloween is still a of couple weeks away, and for our American friends there's still Thanksgiving so maybe Christmas hasn't even crossed your mind yet. But it should. Why? Because of this fantastic little treat

Who doesn't love a holiday romance? This is TWCS Publishing House 1st Compilation Romance series. A collection of short stories written by me and three other authors: Lindsey Gray, Sherri Hayes and C.M Smith. So what's better than a holiday romance collection? A holiday romance collection that's cheap! Season Of Love is now on pre-orders for only $10. Ten bucks, people! The e-book will be available November 1st and - wait for it - it will only be 99 cents. Seriously? Yes, seriously.

Season Of Love is a limited edition from TWCS PH and will only be available from October 27th - January 31, 2012. So you know what that means, right? Order it while you can! TWCS Publishing House - Season Of Love

But speaking of Halloween, did you know TWCS PH is hosting a Halloween Costume contest? Dress up as any character from any of the books TWCS has published and take a picture of it and send it to them! Three winners will be chosen for prize pack of flavoured coffee, signed book marks and more! This is what you need to know:

The Writer's Coffee Shop Publishing House's first annual Character Costume Contest begins October 5, 2011,
and ends November 4, 2011, at 11:59 PM Eastern Standard Time. By submitting an entry, each contestant
agrees to the rules of the contest and states that they are 18 years old or older, or are a minor entering the
contest with their parent's permission.
Who may enter:
Anyone 18 or older, or, between the ages of 13 and 17 with parent's permission. Employees and immediate
family of The Writer's Coffee Shop staff are ineligible for prizes.
What to enter:
You! Dressed as a character from one of our books. Photographs must have been shot by the entrant since
October 1, 2011.
Cropped photos are eligible in all categories. Minor adjustments, including spotting, dodging and burning,
sharpening, contrast and slight color adjustment or the digital equivalents, are acceptable. If our judges
determine that a photographer has altered his or her photo, they reserve the right to disqualify it.
For a photo in which a person is recognizable, and not yourself or an immediate family member who's
permission you have to submit, you must secure a model release from the subject or, in the case of a minor,
the subject’s parent or guardian and provide it to The Writer's Coffee Shop upon request. A sample release
may be obtained by emailing and asking for one.
Photos that violate or infringe upon another person’s rights, including but not limited to copyright, are not
How to enter:
Please submit photographs via email to Please complete the entry form,
which can be found on our website, or _here_. A separate entry must be submitted for each photograph. No
more than 3 entries will be accepted from any one individual. High-quality scans of non-digital photographs
are acceptable. Digital photographs should be taken at the highest resolution possible. Photographs must be
in a .jpeg, .jpg or .gif format. Files submitted may not be larger than 2,048k (2Mb).
By entering the contest, entrants grant TWCS a royalty-free, worldwide, perpetual, non-exclusive license to
display, distribute, reproduce and create derivative works of the entries, in whole or in part, in any media now
existing or subsequently developed, for any educational, promotional, publicity, exhibition, archival, scholarly
and all other standard purposes. Any photograph reproduced will include a photographer credit as feasible.
The Writer's Coffee Shop will not be required to pay any additional consideration or seek any additional
approval in connection with such uses.
Entry deadline:
All entries must be received by 11:59 PM Eastern Time on November 4, 2011.
Judging will be conducted by the staff of The Writer's Coffee Shop. Winning photographs and selected
finalists will be announced November 14, 2011and published in our December Newsletter. Decisions of the
judges will be final. Please do not contact us about the status of entries. The contest is void where prohibited
or restricted by law. The Writer's Coffee Shop reserves the right to cancel the contest or modify these rules at
its discretion. Decisions of The Writer's Coffee Shop will be final.
New short-story compilation to be released in November. Flavored Coffee. Signed Bookmarks! Winners may
receive additional non-cash prizes.


Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Last Call Tour

One of the perks to being published is being able to do interviews, guest posts etc for other blogs/websites. Maybe it's the nerd in me, but I love, love, love answering interview questions. Okay, maybe less nerdy and more nosy. I'm far more  nosy than nerdy. C'mon, who doesn't like a chance to take a little peak into someone else's life? That's what I thought. So, if you're nosy like me, here's what you  need to know.

Are you a book blogger? If you are, or even if you know one and want to pass on the message (because, hello, you can totally be nosy from someone else asking the questions and finding the answers) you can sign up for the Last Call Tour! The dates run from Oct 17-28, and each blog can offer ebooks for giveaway internationally. Check out the form at the end of the post for more details.

Curious how I got the ideas for Last Call? Want to know who, or what, inspired the naughty bits inside (although if you read the dedication I'm pretty sure that answers itself)? Whatever it is you'd want to know sign up for the Tour and ask away! Or if you'd rather do a review or guest post that's great too!

Last Call Tour

Hope to see you on it!



Sunday, October 02, 2011

All things Last Call

And with the end of September do you know what that means? Last Call is now available to order in both paperback and e-book. A list of where to buy the books can be found in Contact.

Now that it's out there people keep asking  me what it feels like to be a published author. Honestly? It feels very surreal. I have the book in my hands and yet, it still doesn't feel like I actually did it. On PUB day I was feeling everything that you could possibly imagine. Nervous, anxious, nauseous and way, way down deep there was a little bit of excitement. Now all I have to do is sit back and wait to see what the reviewers have to say. Is this where I can beg for you not to eat me alive?

Besides the reviewers there are still a couple of people that I really, really don't want to get a hold of it even though I know it's going to happen. My grandmother for one. Don't get me wrong, I'm so grateful that she wants to be supportive and read it, but keep in mind that when it comes to sexual content she's fairly reserved. And if you've read anything I've written - from Last Call to my dip into the fanfiction world - you'll know that sex is a fairly big part of what I write. Now, it's no where near written as graphic or taboo as I could have gone, but for my grandmother I fear one of three things. 1) Heart attack (now you think I'm joking, but really it scares me!) 2) Her never being able to look me in the eye again and 3) A call from her asking me what something is and I'll have to explain Sex 101 - The 2011 Version to my 70-something year old grandmother.

But as my fears of bad reviews and elderly sex ed haunt me, there is something that I am so very proud of. Last Call made TWCS top ten best sellers list of September! It came in 8th on the list, which I am SO very proud and excited about considering I didn't even think I'd make it on there. Eight? Hell, yeah! Here's hoping it just keeps moving up!

If you have read the book it would be great if you could leave a review on either Amazon or Goodreads. If you're a blogger and would like to review it on your blog but haven't gotten the book yet you can find out how by visiting the Contact tab.