Blog

Today on my blog tour...

07/28/2015 12:49

 

Today's stops!

 

Written by Deb--interviewed by author Deborah Nam-Krane

Writer in Paradise--interviewed by author Jami Deise

Author PJ Fiala's blog--Book of the Week

Author Alissa Baxter's blog--guest post on Plotting vs. Pantsing

Awesomely Epic Book Blog--book spotlight

 

Thanks to my friends for hosting me today!

 
 
 
 

BAD MEDICINE Blog Tour and Giveaway!

07/27/2015 09:20

 

For the release of 

BAD MEDICINE,

I'm going on a worldwide blog tour!

 
 

Here is a list of today's stops:

 
 
Brook Cottage Books--Book promo
 
Change the Word--guest post on writing a series
 
 
 

Check back daily for a list of my tour stops, 

and don't forget to enter the giveaway!

 
 
 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

Pick up BAD MEDICINE on Amazon

 

 

What do a smokin’ hot detective, an evil chiropractor, and a couple of blind dates from hell have in common? 

Lizzie has to wrangle them all in the third book of THE LIZZIE HART MYSTERIES series! 

Lizzie Hart is overjoyed that six whole months have passed without a single murder in the sleepy town of Liberty. It’s also been six months since Blake Morgan heartlessly dumped her, but she’s determined to get over him. She’s slimmed down, ready to party, and injury-free, except for a little nagging pain in her ankle. She’s also very single, but her friends are doing everything in their power to fix that—including setting her up on one disastrous blind date after another. 

Lizzie’s reprieve is short-lived when an old friend of hers is found dead from an apparent drug overdose. She wants to write it off as bad behavior after having seen the guy cheating on his wife with the new chiropractor in town. However, when she sees that same chiropractor playing doctor with another man who ends up dead, she worries there could be murder afoot. 

Doing her best to stay on the right side of the law this time, Lizzie decides to go straight to the police with her suspicions. Unfortunately, the only cop available to speak with her is the stern yet hot new detective who has already given her a traffic ticket and a reprimand for public intoxication. Not surprisingly, he brushes her off, leaving her no choice but to begin snooping on her own. Lizzie soon learns she’s going to need help to get to the bottom of this mystery, but her best partner in crime solving, Blake, has turned into her worst enemy. 

Can Lizzie and Blake find a way to work together to catch the killer…or will they kill each other first? 

 

 


 

Mailing List:

http://www.carolinefardig.com/mailing-list/

 

 

 

 

 

New release from Zanna Mackenzie!

07/21/2015 11:25

 

Congrats to Zanna Mackenzie

on the release of ON TRIAL!

 

Amber Reed CCIA Mystery Book #1.5

 

I had the privilege to beta read this novella, and it's another winner!  Set between Books 1 and 2, ON TRIAL tells the story of Amber's final task before becoming a real CCIA agent. 

 

Buy it here!  

 

Tagline:

 “Romantic comedy meets celebrity cozy mystery”

 

Blurb:

Standing between Amber and her chance at getting a dream job with the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency (CCIA) is one final challenge, just one last critical assignment. 

Her task? 

Whisked away to a luxury hotel where the rich and famous are frequent guests, she has only 24 hours to track down who kidnapped the bride-to-be moments before her celebrity wedding. 

The case may be a pretend one, a test of her recently acquired investigative skills, but the stakes are still high. 

An exciting new life, career and the chance to work alongside her CCIA special agent boyfriend Charlie are all tantalizingly close…but can she remember everything she’s learnt, manage to keep her head, and solve the case before the deadline? 

A cozy mystery series with oodles of fun, romance and the smart, sassy special agents from the CCIA - otherwise known as the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency. Books 1, 2 and 3 in the series are available now. Coming soon - Amber Reed Mystery Book 4, due autumn 2015. 

 

 

Extract:

“You’re ready.”

I struggle to catch my breath. Tucking a strand of sweaty strawberry blonde hair behind my ear I gasp, “You’re sure?”

James, my agency trainer and mentor, nods and smiles. “Yep. I’m sure.”

When I signed up for the chance to become a support officer for the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency (otherwise known as the CCIA) I knew my apprenticeship would be tough. I’ve fought to put aside the aching limbs, lack of sleep and mental demands of these past few months and keep my eyes firmly on the prize - my dream job.

If I do manage to complete my apprenticeship, and still be alive at the end of all of this, then hopefully the agency will offer me a job as a support officer. Right now though, I’m wondering if James is right. Am I really ready for the next stage of my training? It doesn’t feel like it. Despite all the efforts to build up my fitness I’m still gasping and out of breath after facing the assault course from hell. I have to confess, I didn’t realise throwing myself into muddy ditches, climbing trees and being abandoned in the middle of nowhere with just a map, compass and bottle of water would be the type of assignments I’d be put through. I mean, I’m applying to be a support officer, not a special agent. But as James pointed out, if I get this job I will work alongside agents, and where they go in order to solve a case, then so do I.

The steady beat of helicopter blades makes me shield my eyes and peer into the skies above the hundreds of acres of woodland, moor and hills which surround agency training camp.

“That’s our lift,” James says, gesturing towards the helicopter now coming in to land in the field just across from us. “You’ve got ten minutes to pack your stuff and meet me back here. This will be your final challenge. Fail this one and you’ll be on your way home with no job.”

Nerves and anxiety bubble up inside of me. This is it. My last chance to prove myself. My last training exercise. Whatever I am about to face will determine my life from this point on. “Only ten minutes? Where are we going anyway?” I shout above the sound of the sinister-looking black helicopter.

“Yes, you’ve only got ten minutes, so you’d better get a move on,” James shouts back. “I’ll explain later where we’re going and why.”

I sprint for my cell-like bedroom in the training block and throw clothes, toiletries and my How To Be A Support Officer course folder and notes into my suitcase. As I tug the case down the hallways, dashing back to meet James, my mind is whirling. What will my assignment be? Where will it be? What if I fail?

James is waiting for me with his holdall slung over one shoulder. “OK, Amber. Let’s get this show on the road. Well, I suppose in this case I should say let’s get this case up in the air instead!” He laughs and nods towards the helicopter. “After you.”

I step forward but stop as James tugs gently at my arm. “You can do this, Amber. Just remember everything you’ve learned these past few months.”

“Everything?” I gulp. “That’s a lot of stuff to remember.”

James winks then pushes me forward, placing a hand on top of my head to indicate I need to stay well below the blades of the helicopter which are now powering up, ready for take-off. Clambering into my seat I fasten my seatbelt. My stomach is in knots. I’ve never flown in a helicopter before and I’m feeling a tad nauseous as we lift off. The land drops away below us and we soar over the forests and hills, off to goodness knows where.

“Hey,” a voice says to the right of me. “I’m Mitch.”

Caught up in what’s going on, I hadn’t even registered the fact there are two other people sitting beside me. Some support officer I’ll make. I definitely need to get to grips with being more observant. I also need to remember absolutely everything I’ve had drilled into my mind during training as well. Not an easy task. If I fail this assignment everything I’ve gone through so far will be for nothing. Plus, I’ll never get to work with Charlie. I need to do this, and I need to do it right.

 

Author Bio:

Zanna Mackenzie lives on the Derbyshire/Leicestershire border in the UK with her husband, 4 dogs, a vegetable patch that’s home to far too many weeds and an ever expanding library of books waiting to be read.

Being a freelance writer and editor of business publications is her ‘day job’ but, at every opportunity, she can be found scribbling down notes on scenes for whatever novel she’s working on. She loves it when the characters in her novels take on minds of their own and start deviating from the original plot!

Find out more about Zanna on her blog www.zannamackenzie.blogspot.co.uk, on Twitter via @ZannaMacKenzie or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/zanna.mackenzie

 

 

Interview with author Jami Deise

07/20/2015 09:29

 

I'm excited to welcome

Jami Deise

to my blog today!

 

Jami is the author of the new vampire novel

THE TIES THAT BLEED.

 

Buy it.  Do it now! --->  Evernight        Amazon

 

After reading Jami's other work, I couldn't wait to get my hands on this one.  She didn't disappoint.  I LOVE vampire stories (especially when the vampires aren't angsty or sparkly) and vampire legend.  After reading it, I had a ton of questions for her.  Here are her answers!

 
 

Caroline:  Where did you get the idea for a vampire book?  I thought your writing leaned more toward women’s fiction. 

 

Jami:  I’ve been working on this particular idea for a long time. A friend introduced me to the Anita Blake, vampire hunter series back in 2001, and I just loved it. It’s not what it once was, unfortunately. Around that time, I also saw the Shane Black film A Long Kiss Goodnight, which is hugely underrated. Diana is kind of a combination of the two. It’s also about how becoming a mother forces women to change their identities. Obviously in not such a drastic way as Diana did, but we all put parts of ourselves on the back burner when we have children. And yes, I love women’s fiction, but I’m also a big horror fan. I read Stephen King’s ‘Salem’s Lot when I was in the 7th grade, and that got me hooked. The beginning of the first chapter is a bit of an homage to ‘Salem’s Lot, if you can find it!

 

I loved that movie, and yes, it's totally underrated.  Unfortunately, I didn't get the Salem's Lot reference.  The only Stephen King I've read is IT, which freaked me out and I haven't been able to read another of his.  Moving on, what did you have to do differently or how did you have to think differently to write the vampire/mystery genre novel versus KEEPING SCORE, your women's fiction novel?  There was a lot of physical action, and a lot of dying in THE TIES THAT BLEED. 

 

I did a lot of things differently, but it wasn't because of the different genres. BLEED actually started life as a screenplay called BLOODLINES. I wrote it way back in 2002 and then a few years ago decided to turn it into a novel. Screenwriting is very different from novel-writing -- the biggest difference being that in a novel, you have to detail what the protagonist is thinking and why. In the screenplay everything is shown. Plus screenplays are much shorter! I had to add some characters to keep BLEED from being a novella. And finally, in a screenplay you can end scenes right in the middle, as soon as a character says or does something important. I had a few of them in BLOODLINES, and I might have been able to get away with them if I'd written the novel in the third person. But in first person, I had to finish those scenes.  Writing a novel after having written screenplays for ten years -- that was tough!

 

What kind of research did you do for this book?  Is there a leading authority on vampires out there?

 

Oh, there are tons of books out there about vampire lore. There’s even an idiot’s guide to vampires. I researched the original legends, back when people actually believed in vampires. I wanted to stay as close to the source as possible. And of course I made up a lot of things too.

 

I remember getting creeped out a few times while I was researching witchcraft for my second novel.  Did those old vampire legends ever give you nightmares?

 

I have been a horror fan since I watched the Exorcist on TV in the 7th grade, so no. But I can understand that research giving you nightmares because you were researching real life covens, right? I watched Still Alice last week. That stuff gives me nightmares.

 

Yes, some of the information you find out there can be rather chilling.  Speaking of practicing one's beliefs, you seem to have a grasp of Catholicism.  Is that from research or first-hand experience?

 

My husband and son are practicing Catholics, so I get a dose once or twice a year.

 

Is a drakvar a thing from vampire lore, or is it something you created?  How about a revenant?

 

I put my own twist on these – mainly with the names – but there are other legends about children born of a vampire/human union. And revenant is an earlier form of the vampire legend. Some of these legends had them as mindless zombie-like creatures. The vampire legends are older than the book Dracula. I think Dracula was the first sexy vampire with a brain. Before that, they were closer to the revenants in the book.

 

Are there more adventures to come for Diana the vampire hunter?

 

I have some planned, but I’ll have to see how sales go to decide whether they’re worth putting down on paper.

 

About the Author

Jami Deise discovered Stephen King’s novel “Salem’s Lot” when she was in middle school and never looked back. Along with vampires, she has always been drawn to stories about what mothers will do for their children. Her first novel, KEEPING SCORE, is about a divorced mom who’ll do anything to get her 9-year-old son onto her town’s best travel baseball team. Currently a resident of St. Petersburg, FL, Jami spent most of her life in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C. After graduating from the University of Maryland with a degree in journalism, Jami spent ten years working in public relations for lobbying groups before turning to fiction. Jami is on Facebook; tweets from @JamiDeise; blogs at www.jamideise.blogspot.com, reviews women’s fiction at www.chicklitcentral.com, and reads for a New York City-based literary agency. She is in her 40s, married with a college-age son and a very protective German Shepherd. 

 

Social media links 

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JamiDeiseauthor

Twitter: @JamiDeise

Blog: www.jamideise.blogspot.com

 

 

 

It's PUB DAY for BAD MEDICINE!

07/07/2015 09:47

 

Lizzie's back!

 

I'm thrilled to announce that

BAD MEDICINE

is out today!

 
 

Get it here

 

What do a smokin’ hot detective, an evil chiropractor, 

and a couple of blind dates from hell have in common?

 

Lizzie has to wrangle them all in the third book of

THE LIZZIE HART MYSTERIES series!

 

Lizzie Hart is overjoyed that six whole months have passed without a single murder in the sleepy town of Liberty.  It’s also been six months since Blake Morgan heartlessly dumped her, but she’s determined to get over him.  She’s slimmed down, ready to party, and injury-free, except for a little nagging pain in her ankle.  She’s also very single, but her friends are doing everything in their power to fix that—including setting her up on one disastrous blind date after another. 

 

Lizzie’s reprieve is short-lived when an old friend of hers is found dead from an apparent drug overdose.  She wants to write it off as bad behavior after having seen the guy cheating on his wife with the new chiropractor in town.  However, when she sees that same chiropractor playing doctor with another man who ends up dead, she worries there could be murder afoot.

 

Doing her best to stay on the right side of the law this time, Lizzie decides to go straight to the police with her suspicions.  Unfortunately, the only cop available to speak with her is the stern yet hot new detective who has already given her a traffic ticket and a reprimand for public intoxication.  Not surprisingly, he brushes her off, leaving her no choice but to begin snooping on her own.  Lizzie soon learns she’s going to need help to get to the bottom of this mystery, but her best partner in crime solving, Blake, has turned into her worst enemy. 

 

Can Lizzie and Blake find a way to work together to catch the killer…or will they kill each other first?

 

 

 

Book spotlight for author PJ Fiala!

07/06/2015 11:40

Book spotlight for 

DOG DAYS OF SUMMER

by PJ Fiala

 

 

Buy Link: US  http://amzn.to/1MwV6Rk

UK:  http://goo.gl/VC9SsW

CA:  http://goo.gl/mDcgLC

 

He had love and passion to give, but she was afraid to take it.

 

Iraq veteran and motorcycle shop owner Jeremiah “Dog” Sheppard is looking forward to the annual Veterans Ride benefit for local vets, but this year he might be rewarded with more than the usual satisfaction of doing a good deed. When he asks the stunning single mother of one of his employees to help with the charity event, he finds himself facing a greater challenge than expected.

 

Joci James is happy to use her graphic design and marketing savvy to help a good cause but charity might not be her only motivator. She cannot deny a mutual attraction but her bruised heart is closed for business, even to her son’s good-looking boss. Fortunately, the tenacious Jeremiah never gives up without a fight.

 

 

Website: https://www.pjfiala.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/pjfiala1

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/pfiala

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/pattifiala/dog-days-of-summer/

Authorsdb: http://authorsdb.com/authors-directory/8914-pj-fiala

AuthorsdB – Book: http://tinyurl.com/p8gmujz

Goodreads author: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7866768.P_J_Fiala

Goodreads Book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21851827-dog-days-of-summer

Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1IBsBRQ

RebelMouse: https://www.rebelmouse.com/pjfiala/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/+PJFiala/posts

Spotify: www.spotify.com

You Tube Trailer http://goo.gl/3F2keF

You Tube My Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0_BBjvOwu8akytlEN8VQNw

 

Follow the links for the playlists for each book:

Second Chances  - http://tinyurl.com/nuut3wn

Dog Days of Summer  - http://tinyurl.com/qhld35l

Rydin the Storm Out - http://tinyurl.com/l8x8p84

 

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/edit?trk=hb_tab_pro_top

Bookarma: https://bookarma.net/book/9781595983251-dog-days-of-summer

Riffle: https://read.rifflebooks.com/profiles/151221

Riffle-Dog Days: https://read.rifflebooks.com/books/331300

 

Author Bio:

I am a wife of thirty years, a mother of four grown children and the grandmother of three lovely grandchildren. When not writing a new story, I can be found riding my motorcycle and exploring this fabulous country of ours. My writing revolves around people anyone would love to spend time with. No self-absorbed billionaires for me.

Earning my Bachelor's Degree later in life fulfilled a dream for me. Then, I found the courage to write and I haven't looked back. Currently I have three published books, Designing Samantha's Love, Dog Days of Summer and Rydin' the Storm Out. Danny's War will be coming soon. I also serve as the VP of Communications for WisRWA and devote a large amount of my time helping other authors slog their way through this thing called publishing. I love to hear from fans, so look me up and touch base.

I come from a family of veterans.  My grandfather, father, brother, two of my sons, and one daughter-in-law are all veterans.  Needless to say, I am proud to be an American and proud of the service my amazing family has given.

 

Google+ groups:

Retired but "Damn I'm Busy!"

Baby Boomer Thought Leaders

The Boomer Hangout

Boomer Life

The Fiery Grandma's Healthy Business Center.

 

 

Isabella Louise Anderson's THE RIGHT DESIGN is on sale now!

07/02/2015 15:45

 

Today I'm featuring the lovely 

Isabella Louise Anderson,

author and ringleader of Chick Lit Goddesses,

a group of wonderful ladies I would be lost without.

 

THE RIGHT DESIGN is on sale for $0.99 through August 3rd.

 
 
 

 

Blurb:

Do business and pleasure mix?

In the author's debut novel comes a story about picking up the pieces, letting go of the past, and finding love along the way--even if morals are tested!

Interior designer Carrie Newman could not have envisioned a more perfect life for herself. She had a great job doing what she loved, wonderful friends, and a close relationship with her sister and brother-in-law. Add in an amazing man who she’d hoped would soon become her husband, and her life was perfect. Until one devastating decision ruins her relationship and changes the course of her life.

Determined to make a new start, Carrie leaves Texas and heads to Palm Beach to pick up the pieces of her shattered and broken life. The last thing she expects is to find herself attracted to her first client at her new job--Brad Larson, who has proven himself time and time again to be caddish.

But there’s something beneath the surface of Brad’s arrogant exterior that keeps her craving more of him--something almost sweet that Carrie can’t seem to resist.

Is Carrie ready to take another chance on romance? And will this new design of her life prove to be the right one?

 

Excerpt:

After a long pause, Carrie finally spoke. “Fine. Yes, I’m seeing someone.” And when she said those words, she smiled because sticking it to him felt good. Damn good!

Roger stood up, walked toward her and kneeled down in front of her.

Carrie held her hand up to stop him, closed her eyes and took a breath.

“Does he know you like I do? Does he know how you like your eggs in the morning? Does he know how you have to sleep with socks on every night? Does he know you read magazines from the back to the front?”

She turned her head so she wouldn’t have to face him. “Roger, please leave.” Carrie couldn’t take it anymore.

Roger reached for her, grasping her arms and bringing her attention back to him.

“Get the hell out of here. Now!” Anger shot through Carrie as she raised her voice.

“Does he know how you like to be kissed?” Roger stared at Carrie as he caressed her cheek with the back of his hand.

While his hand had once been a source of soothing touch for her, it now stung. “Leave! We’re over! Get the hell out of here,” she yelled, pointing to the exit.

Suddenly, Roger grabbed her shoulders and pulled her tightly to him, catching her by surprise.

“I can’t do this,” she said trying to wriggle out of his arms, but his grip didn’t loosen. When they made eye contact again, she began to speak, but before she knew it, Carrie felt Roger’s lips on hers. For a moment, Roger had her paralyzed, as their lips reacquainted with one another. Kissing him felt familiar and for a half a second, it was as if nothing had changed between them. Seconds later, when she heard her door open, she immediately pushed Roger away, this time with more force, and saw Brad staring wide-eyed at the two of them. “Brad!” She ran toward him, but he held his hands up to stop her.

“Don’t bother,” he snapped and stormed out of her office.

Carrie quickly brushed past Roger and followed Brad down the hall calling his name, but he didn’t respond, and his pace quickened. “Brad, will you please just listen to me?” Carrie begged again as they quickly walked past Elaine’s desk and out the door. “Please let me explain.” When they made it outside to Brad’s car, he finally stopped and faced her. She tried to reach out to him, but he pulled away.

“What do you want, Carrie?”

Her eyes burned as tears ran down her face. She didn’t know where to start or what to say while memories of the last two days ran through her mind. “I’m so very sorry,” she said, wiping her tears away. “I didn’t know he was coming here.”

“He who? Who is he?” His voice was filled with dismay and spite.

“He’s my ex,” Carrie quietly confessed.

He gave a sarcastic laugh. “Of course he is.”

“We were together for six years, he cheated on me, and then I moved here to get away from him and start over. That’s when I met you.” She hoped that giving him the short version would satisfy him for now. Carrie just wanted things to get back to the way they were before Roger came to Florida.

“Why didn’t you tell me?”

Of all the many conversations, exes weren’t discussed on either of their parts. “He never came up in conversation. We never talked about our exes.”

“Fine, but how can you not mention someone you were with for that long? That’s kind of a big deal, don’t you think?”

“You and I have only known each other for a few weeks. Besides, at least I don’t zip in and out of women like you do,” she said. “Nor do I have flings with my assistant.”

“Danielle and I were together for only a short time, and that was years ago.”

“Well, geez, I’m sorry I didn’t follow proper Palm Beach etiquette and give you a history of my previous romances,” she fought back, but then realized that she was practically yelling. After taking a breath, she said, “I didn’t mean that, Brad. I’m sorry. I just want us back together.”

“You have a really funny way of showing that. Do you want to be with him?”

She shook her head. “No. I want you.”

He pointed toward the entrance to Ocean Designs. “That’s not the way it looked in your office.”

“I…” she began, but Carrie was at a loss for words. She buried her head in her hands. She’d been caught kissing her cheating ex and now was fighting to be with the man who she’d started to love. She looked up at Brad and began to cry harder.

“I guess I have my answer,” Brad said as he unlocked his door. “Oh, and don’t worry about finishing the project. I’ll have England take over.”

 

Buy Links:

Amazon US (Kindle): http://amzn.to/TUmZNX

Amazon US (Paperback): 
http://amzn.to/1q3qxI9

Amazon - Canada: http://amzn.to/1o8nxYw

Amazon - UK: 
http://amzn.to/1vGLFFH

Barnes & Noble (Paperback and Nook): http://bit.ly/1AfWkcm

 

 

About the Author

Isabella grew up with a book in her hand, and to this day nothing has changed. She is a member of the Romance Writers of America and has been featured on several blogs. While Isabella doesn't blog a lot, she focuses her time on featuring other writers, along with writing and editing. Isabella Louise Anderson created Chick Lit Goddess to share the love of the following genres: Chick Lit, Contemporary Romance, Romance, and Romantic Comedies! She loves featuring authors and their books. She lives in Dallas with her husband and cat. She enjoys spicy Mexican food and drinking margaritas, and can be found spending time with family and friends, cheering on the Texas Rangers, and reading. Isabella's short story, Meet Me Under the Mistletoe, was featured in Simon & Fig's Christmas anthology, Merry & Bright, in November 2013. The Right Design is her first novel.

 

Isabella Louise Anderson’s links:

Isabella Louise Anderson: http://bit.ly/1j5AyWF

Author Facebook “Like” page: http://on.fb.me/1t6PAzC

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/1rv8Ipm

Pinterest: http://bit.ly/1n0XlCL

Twitter: http://bit.ly/1ze5rgg

 

Chick Lit Goddess Links:

Website: http://bit.ly/1n0Yryk

Chick Lit Goddess “Like” page: http://on.fb.me/1o8qxE8

Twitter: http://bit.ly/1j5D0MT

 

 

 

 

Monique McDonell guest post

06/30/2015 09:32

 

Congrats to my author friend 

Monique McDonell

on the release of ANY WAY YOU DREAM IT!

 

Monique is celebrating the launch of her new book with a guest post about choosing character names and traits.

Take it away, Monique!

 

What’s in a name?

I’ve never understood how someone can have a baby, bring it home from the hospital and two weeks later not have named it. Names are such an integral part of us and they shape who we are and how we’re treated so much. When it comes to naming characters I think the same thing is true.

I find naming characters really fun. (In real life I’m pretty conservative where names are concerned. I have a surname with wacky spelling and I’m well aware going through your life repeating your name and its spelling over and over gets very old, very quickly.)

Until the last fifteen years or so most people did have pretty standard names. In western culture they had Biblical names – hello, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John - or family names  - all the women in our family are called Elizabeth- or sometimes popular names – welcome to Kindergarten in 1974 where everyone in the class is called Emma, Rebecca, Sarah, Catherine or Jennifer.

I’m really aware of that when naming my characters. Most people from regular suburban families aged twenty five or over have regular stock standard names. And that’s the ages of most of my characters.

Still you want to have some fun with it. In Any Way You Dream It my characters are called Lucy and Chase. Chase comes from an established family and his is a family name.  She teases him about his name quite a bit.

In the first book in the series the main character is Piper. I called her that because she’s an Australian living in America and I like the way her name sounds depending who says it. In America you would pronounce it Pie-purr and here in Australia we say Pie-pah. So I liked that because I think it adds to her fish-out –of- water quality when even her name changes depending on her location. I have a character called Ophelia in that book, who is not so nice, I think the name gives her a bit of a snooty air and she is that kind of character (although I personally love that name).

I sometimes ask my fans on my Facebook author page for suggestions. I started writing a series with Irish characters and that is still my most commented on post on Facebook. So many wonderful suggestions. I recently asked for suggestions to name characters in Book 6 in the Upper Crust Series.

Names and appearance help govern my characters personality traits. I do try and give all my characters a hobby or an interest because I think that shows you a lot about them. Sometimes the hobby confirms your preconception for example you might see someone who jumps out of planes and know they’re a dare-devil, but I also like to give them an interest you might not see coming to show the depths of the character that the reader and the other characters might not see unless they go beneath the surface.

I find characters that have a unique turn or phrase and interests more interesting to write and by layering those aspects it helps me get in their heads. I decide what they drink what they eat or don’t eat, if they love high heels or prefer sneakers all before I start writing because it helps me get to know the character from the inside.

Of course traits and names can change. I haven’t done it ye but I plan to write a story with a character who hates their name and changes it by deed-poll. That would be fun to write. It would have to be a bad name or a bad fit. I just can’t quite think of a name to start with.

 

 

Monique McDonell will be on tour June 29-July 6 with her novel Any Way You Dream It

 

Sometimes when life throws you lemons, you create a fake fiancé. That’s exactly what Lucy does when her high school nemesis calls. She didn’t mean to lie. Really, she didn’t. But with nowhere to live and a car that has just decided to die on her, the thought of attending the reunion alone is one she can’t contemplate. Cherie thinks arrogant, wealthy and way too handsome Chase is the answer to her friend’s dilemma and for reasons Lucy can’t fathom, Chase agrees. The man is too good to be true – he fixes her car, takes her to stay at his place – more castle than house – and seems to find her fascinating. Life hasn’t been easy for Lucy and she has a hard time accepting anyone would believe Chase would be with her. Still, he turns out to be the perfect choice and in the month leading up to the reunion makeshimself an indispensable part of her life, which may be the biggest problem of all. Lucy knows life is not a fairy tale – she’s living above her place of work, her sister has run off leaving her with three kids and, when the weekend reunion begins, she has to go back to a town where her greatest humiliations took place. Will her ‘romance’ with Chase be turn out to be the answer to her dreams or will the whole sham turn into just another nightmare? Please visit CLP Blog Tours for all the tour stops!

 

 

Author Bio:

I am an Australian author who writes contemporary women's fiction including chick lit and romance. I live on Sydney's Northern Beaches with my husband and daughter, and despite my dog phobia, with a dog called Skip. I have written all my life especially as a child when I loved to write short stories and poetry. At University I studied Creative Writing as part of my Communication degree. Afterwards I was busy working in public relations I didn't write for pleasure for quite a few years although I wrote many media releases, brochures and newsletters. (And I still do in my day-job!) When I began to write again I noticed a trend - writing dark unhappy stories made me unhappy. So I made a decision to write a novel with a happy ending and I have been writing happy stories ever since. I have been a member of the writing group The Writer’s Dozen for eight years. Our anthology Better Than Chocolate raised over $10,000 for the charity Room to Read and helped build a library in South East Asia. I am also a member of the Romance Writers of Australia. I have written five stand-alone romantic comedies and Any Way You Slice It, the first book in her new Upper Crust series.   

To learn more about Monique McDonell and her upcoming books please visit her at www.moniquemcdonellauthor.com 

Links:

Amazon author page

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Blog

Goodreads

 

Book Links:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1QRLOGf

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/any-way-you-dream-it-monique-mcdonell/1121956463?ean=2940151923538

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25613729-any-way-you-dream-it

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

New Smash Mouth Biography by bassist Paul DeLisle

06/29/2015 08:52

 

When I was asked to feature 

Smash Mouth's

new biography on my blog, I was beyond excited!

I've been a fan for years, and can't wait to read the book!

 

 

Who hasn't rocked out to the music of Smash Mouth?! Now you can go behind the music with a band that carried the spirit of a generation in Walkin' on the Sun; The Official Smash Mouth Biography.

 

 

Blurb:

Hello. My name is Paul DeLisle. I’m the guy who wrote this book. You've probably never heard of me. That's okay. Most people wouldn't know me from Adam. But, unless you've been living in a cloistered monastery for the last fifteen years, you have heard of my band.

 

So begins the memoir of the creation, rise, and current state of the multi-platinum recording artist Smash Mouth as told by bassist Paul DeLisle. Well known for their hits “All Star,” “Walking on the Sun,” “Then the Morning Comes,” “Can’t Get Enough of You Baby,” and “I’m a Believer,” the band carried the spirit of a generation, but didn't stop there. Enjoy this behind-the-scenes look from Paul’s unique, there from the start, insider’s view.

 

 

Excerpt:

There's an episode of Cheers where washed-up ball player Sam Malone, frustrated with either Diane or Rebecca, proclaims, "Y'know, most people don't know this ... but I’m famous!"

I love that line. I can totally relate. You see, I am a founding and continued member of the band Smash Mouth. Yet I am, proudly and alas, the bass player. I’m not famous. My band is.

From the beginning, Smash Mouth was set up as a democracy between four musicians and a manager, each player having an equal voice on band matters. Yet we were all fully aware and accepting of the fact that, as lead singer/frontman, Steve Harwell would be getting a disproportionate amount of attention. Seeing as he is the face and mouthpiece of Smash Mouth, you may be a little disappointed he didn't write this book.

But stay with me here. Because as you'll see, I have a unique vantage point: as one of only four original constituents, I’ve been involved in every aspect of the band since day one. Only Steve and I have trod every step of this Smash Mouth journey. Also, while traditionally under-recognized, the bass player himself sees everything. Plus I went to college. Who better to write a book about Smash Mouth?

That said, keep in mind this book is solely from my point of view. Steve, Greg, Kevin, and Robert would obviously have different takes on certain events. However, this book is simply intended as a comprehensive account of our rise to fame and continued success.

So without further ado ... here’s what happened:

 

Pick up your copy of Walkin' on the Sun today and get your own "backstage pass" to the world of Smash Mouth!

 

Buy Links:

 

Amazon

Barnes and Noble 

Smash Mouth

 
 
 
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Congrats Jami Deise on the release of THE TIES THAT BLEED!

06/25/2015 08:35

 

My friend and fellow writer 

(and also book synopsis guru)

Jami Deise has just released 

THE TIES THAT BLEED

through Evernight Publishing!  Congrats, Jami!

 

It's got Jami's trademark humor AND vampires!  What's not to love?

 

Buy THE TIES THAT BLEED:

Evernight        Amazon

 
 

 

 

Blurb:

 

Diana Rowan has more kills than any other vampire assassin in the FBI. 

Except she hasn't staked a vamp in ten years.  Now Diana's married to a doctor and mom to eight-year-old Katie. And while she's still with the Bureau, she spends her time in the classroom, teaching the next generation of vampire assassins how to track, stake and decapitate bloodsuckers.

Then Ian, the fang who nearly killed her, returns from the grave. To keep her family safe, Diana has to go on the hunt once more.  With time running out, she is forced to turn to another vampire for help:  Gerard, who created Ian. Who was once Diana's lover. And who’ll do anything to get her back.

 

Excerpt:

 

As if he could sense me, Gerard suddenly appears at the top of the staircase. He’s wearing an outlandish black cape, and practically floats down the stairs. When he reaches me, he pulls the cape over his mouth dramatically. His eyes glow yellow, then red.

How ridiculous.

“Grow up,” I snap.

Gerard drops the cape and pouts. Underneath, he’s wearing a European-cut suit and shoes. He looks like a GQ model in a banking ad. That whole ageless vampire thing really works for him. Unfortunately. Valerie was right. He does look exactly the same. His black hair is slicked back as if wet from the shower. His prominent nose and chin jut out like they’d been carved from Roman marble. I don’t know exactly how old he is, but he could fit in during any time period, any country.

And pathetically, he still makes my stomach do backflips. Like I’m some fifteen-year-old crushing on the high school quarterback.

I disgust myself.

“This isn't what you want?” His voice betrays a slight hint of accent from a bygone era. “The epitome of the big bad vampire, to tell all your little students? I know! Let's take a picture, the two of us together.”

He claps his hands. “Mrs. Leonard! Please, if you would, take a photograph of me with Ms. Rowan.”

“You’re a vampire. You don’t show up in photographs.”

“I’d rather you smear me with blood and leave me naked in Central Park,” she calls out from the hallway.

“So hard to find a decent human servant these days, isn't it?”

“Not nearly as difficult as finding a decent vampire hunter,” he counters. “Or so your students’ failure rate makes it seem. Tell me, are the Virginia suburbs as bucolic as the travel brochures suggest?”

“Not when the mosquitoes are biting.”

“Mosquitoes,” he sneers. “So you’ve minimized myself and my kind to annoying little insects. I’m charmed.”

“I’m not here to charm you.”

“You've come to me for help. Business.”

“There would be no other reason,” I tell him.

“So I feared.”

I am not letting this get personal. “A week ago, a vampire—”

He puts a finger on my mouth. “Before we work, a second to drink you in.” He smiles suggestively. “So to speak.”

And because I need his help— for no other reason— I stand there, a marble statue, and let him touch me. He runs his hands all over my face, my hair, and my neck. He caresses my scar. I try my best not to react.

“You’ve healed well.”

My best is good enough. I step back, breathing again. “Robert did a wonderful job.”

“Ah. Robert.” He picks up my left hand and gazes at my rings. “The man who saved your life and stole your heart.”

“You imply someone else had it.”

“Not even a stake in your hand, and yet you wound so well.”

Before I can stop him, he grabs me so we’re chest-to-chest. My heart pounds into him. His heart, of course, doesn’t beat.

“Does he make you feel human, Diana? Do you sleep in your big house in the suburbs and pretend the darkness does not call to you?”

Coming here was a huge mistake.

Gerard drops my hand and takes a few steps back. He’s toying with me. Naturally. I’m just a mouse to him, that’s all. That’s all I ever was.

“Tell me about the vampire,” he commands.

I take a deep breath. Like a gentleman, he pretends not to notice. “The analysis shows you created him. About a hundred years ago.”

“I created only one vampire in that time. And nine years ago, you killed him.”

“Then somebody forgot to tell him. Science doesn’t lie.”

“But humans do,” Gerard smiles.

“And those that were once human.”

Gerard paces around me. I can’t tell if he’s thinking or sizing me up as prey. My legs tense.

“If Ian were alive, I would know it,” he tells me. “I would feel it. I created him. When you killed him, I felt his life force flow out of me.”

“Could another vampire bring him back?” I ask.

Gerard cocks his head, thinking. “There is still much we do not know about how the cruor works. Perhaps you can discover the answers for us. In your laboratory.”

Cruor is the word the vampires use to describe the rules for their existence. We use a different word. Fangology.

“The obvious answer is that I didn’t kill him,” I say. “And your life-force odometer needs to be recalibrated.”

“So you will hunt him down again. I suppose I should be relieved you're not bearing wooden stakes for me.”

“I have no reason to kill you. Do I?”

“It would be easier than hunting down Ian,” he points out. “You know how to play the game. Kill the one who created him, and Ian will die too.”

I try to picture myself whipping out the stake from my ankle holster and stabbing him in the heart. It’s an image that doesn’t come. He’s too quick, too good for me.

“I've never been one to take the easy way out,” I say.

“There would be nothing easy about it.”

He takes my chin in his hands and turns my head so I’m forced to look directly at him. Idiot.

“You know that hypnosis bullshit doesn’t work with me,” I remind him.

“Don’t you want to know my price?” His hand slips down to my neck.

I back away. “I know your price, and you know I won't pay it.”

“I don’t want your blood.”

Even though I know the answer, I ask anyway. “Then what do you want?”

“One night. And I'll give you all the help you need.”

“Burn in hell.”

I blow out the door before he can answer.

 

 

 

About the Author:

 

Jami Deise discovered Stephen King’s novel “Salem’s Lot” when she was in middle school and never looked back. Along with vampires, she has always been drawn to stories about what mothers will do for their children. Her first novel, KEEPING SCORE, is about a divorced mom who’ll do anything to get her 9-year-old son onto her town’s best travel baseball team. Currently a resident of St. Petersburg, FL, Jami spent most of her life in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C. After graduating from the University of Maryland with a degree in journalism, Jami spent ten years working in public relations for lobbying groups before turning to fiction. Jami is on Facebook; tweets from @JamiDeise; blogs at www.jamideise.blogspot.com, reviews women’s fiction at www.chicklitcentral.com, and reads for a New York City-based literary agency. She is in her 40s, married with a college-age son and a very protective German Shepherd. 

 

Social media links 

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JamiDeiseauthor

Twitter: @JamiDeise

Blog: www.jamideise.blogspot.com

 

 

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