Monday, July 30, 2012

Social Media: Love It or Hate it?

It's the last week of the Buccaneer Blogfest and I've had a blast meeting everyone.

Many thanks to Sharon Bayliss and Courtney Young for hosting this month long get-together.

Free Photo From Flickr
Today's topic is social media: Do you love it or hate it?

I don't want to bore you with all the pros and cons of social media. We all know what they are. We all know what a time-sucker it is.

I've read that social media is a must for authors trying to build their platform. I could, and have, spent all day going from blogging to Facebook and GoodReads and LinkedIn and YouTube. I've recently joined Twitter (but have yet to really figure it out) and Pinterest.

But social media is not the most important part of building your author platform. After all, your work has to be good in the first place for any of this media to work. You have to give your readers and followers a good product to begin with. You have to be interesting. And of course free stuff is always welcome. So in essence, social media is only a small part of building your platform.

And frankly, I'm not there yet. Sure, I have some faithful followers. I appreciate them/you so much! I love rubbing elbows with other writers and authors, and really, I take a lot of pride in it - sinful, I know. It's just that I never dreamed that I'd be in the same league. But why not? Most of us writing bloggers are on the same path, just different locations on the trail.

The reason I know all of you is due to social media.

I want you all to know how much I appreciate you for so many reasons.

Even after all the books about writing I've studied, I've learned the most about the craft from you, in bits and pieces, through following your blogs. Then of course there's the endless support, encouragement and friendship. I have friends all over the world! England, Germany, the Netherlands, France, Australia, South Africa, Mexico, India. That's right, I'm cosmopolitan. A world traveler. A citizen of the world.

And it's all due to knowing you through social media.

Yep, gotta love it!


Friday, July 27, 2012

BuccFest Wk 3: Book Recommendations

We're winding down at the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Courtney Young.

Today's task was to do a book review or recommendation.

So today, I'm going to do a couple of shout-outs to some awesome blogsome buddies.

First, Roland Yeomans book, Rites of Passage, is FREE today over on Amazon!

Here's the blurb:

Some dangerous souls lead lives like loaded guns.

Captain Samuel McCord is such a man. His nature is that of a poet and a philospher. His family dying in a Comanche raid right before his eyes changed all that.

Violence and death has stalked him since that day. Becoming blood brother to a not fully human Apache shaman changed McCord further. He sees around the corner in reality.

By 1853, he has become a pariah among the Texas Rangers, assigned certain death assignments. Traveling the world, McCord saves Princess Victoria's life, sets Napoleon III on his throne, and fights against both sides in the Chinese Opium War. Every crown prince of Europe and the Orient has set a bounty on his life.

McCord could care less. Someone has murdered the young girl he raised from a tiny baby. The murderer took the girl's face to wear as a mask. She was last seen in the company of someone only known as the Gray Man.

If you know Roland, then you know how fun and exciting his books are. I haven't read this one yet, but it's waiting inside my Kindle.

And did I mention it's FREE today over on Amazon?!


Michelle K. Pickett's book, Concilium, was released today! Michelle has had the count-down widget in her sidebar it seems like forever - I want to say a year?!

Before I go any further, Michelle is going to stop here on her blog tour on August 6th to talk about the MEN of Concilium. If you like men...come back because these guys are rather special.

Here's the back cover blurb:

“A tale of deadly creatures and forbidden romance”

Leslee hit a strange animal with her car. Now she’s marked for death.

It was a simple car accident--the animal didn’t even die--but it drew the attention of the Cruor Imbibo. Driven by their insatiable need to feed, the secret society of Imbibo has devoured the dregs of civilization for centuries.

Afraid Leslee will expose them, and put an end to their meal ticket, the Imbibo want her dead.

The Concilium is Leslee's only protection. Guardian of the ancient secret and the protector of humans, the Concilium fights to control the Imbibo and end their feeding frenzy.

Miller works for the Concilium. Keeping Leslee alive is his next assignment.

Now Leslee is on the run, and the only thing between her flesh and the snapping jaws of the Imbibo is Miller. He and Leslee quickly form a bond, but will falling in love make Miller’s job more difficult? Because if he fails, Leslee will be next on the Imbibo menu.

The Cruor Imbibo are coming, and they're coming for Leslee.

You can also read an excerpt over at MuseItUp Publishing.

OR, you can buy Concilium HERE.

This books sounds so exciting to me! It's definitely on my TBR list. If you want to put it on yours, go over to GoodReads.

About Michelle Pickett:

Michelle has been an avid reader since a young child. She began writing for personal enjoyment in college, where she graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in accounting. Realizing that sitting in a cubicle all day was a form of cruel and unusual punishment, she decided to do what she really wanted to—share her passion for reading and writing with others.

She wrote her debut novel Concilium in 2010. The sequel, Concilium: The Departure soon followed.

Michelle was born and raised in Michigan. She now resides in a small community outside Houston, Texas with her husband, four children, a 125-pound lap dog and a very grumpy cockatiel.

She writes adult and young adult Sci-Fi and urban fantasy romance.

Michelle loves to hear from her readers! Contact her at



Wednesday, July 25, 2012

BuccFest Wk 3: Authors and Pubs

Midweek  of week 3 of the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Courtney Young. You can still join by going HERE.

Today's question is: Who are my favorite authors and why?

Favorite Authors:
  • J.K. Rowling and the Harry Potter series
  • Suzanne Collins and the Hunger Games trilogy
  • Norman Vincent Peale
  • Leo Buscaglia
  • P.D. James
  • Charles Dickens
  • British Mystery Writers (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, P.D. James, Reginald Hill, Ian Rankin, Will Thomas, Rennie Airth, Bruce Alexander, Steven Booth, Susan Hill, Ruth Rendell, Colin Dexter).

JK Rowling created a magical world. The creatures are awesome, endearing and yes, some are scary. It's full of excitement and friendship and people who care immensely about justice. It's far enough away from our world to not be a stressful read. Plus, wands and magic? Who wouldn't love that?

Suzanne Collins books showed the lifeforce of the human spirit. No matter how bad life got, her characters plunge on ahead. They're brave and strong and survivors. I admire that.

Norman Vincent Peale is the father of positive thinking. His books have helped me and continue to help me when I need a pep talk.

Leo Buscaglia taught a class on love at the University of Southern California. He was another positive thinker so full of love for life and his fellow man. His books always make me feel better.

P.D. James is the queen of british mysteries. And at ninety-two years old, she's still writing - by hand, two hours per day, and still publishing books.

I can't possibly pick my favorite british mystery author, but I adore reading them. I love everything British, from the accent to the double-decker buses and black cabs.

But especially the pubs!

If you read my last post about copyright issues, then you'll know that I'm now using my own photos, like the ones below. So on occasion, I might slip one in that doesn't actually fit the post. The hubs and I totally had fun drinking in these pubs if you're looking for recommendations.

The hubs at Ye Olde
Cheshire Cheese
Charles Dickens was the number one author of the Victorian era, in my book. His characters are unique, unforgetable, and endearing. He took part of the human psyche and pumped it up so that our flaws, thoughts, and even kindnesses are larger than life and hard to miss. His characters are everyman, in a way. Dickens was a proponent of social issues after his father was put in a debtor's prison and he was put to work to help earn money for the family.

And of course, Dickens drank at Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese in London. My rump sat in the exact spot as his. Yeah, I felt special.
The Sherlock Holmes Pub

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle paved the way for the rest of the British authors with his Sherlock Holmes series. I am a huge Sherlock Holme's fan. I own the full series on DVD - the one with Jeremy Brett. And yes, I drank in this pub, too.

We drank at the Porcupine pub, too.

As far as I know, no famous authors hung out here.

But I think I could write here. A few drinks to make me happy, and who knows what I could come up with!

No, we weren't on a pub tour,
but by a few happy coincidences,
we ended up at a few.

So who are your favorite authors and why?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Jack Daniel's Rocks! And Other Copyright Issues!

This photo used with
permission from
Wikipedia Commons
 A post went viral the other day over at Roni Loren's blog about copyright infringement. After reading it, I went through my photo's at Picasa Web (where Google stores my photos/pictures from Blogger) and deleted all the item's that weren't mine. In case you were wondering, it was really easy - after deleting them from Picasa, they were automatically deleted from my blog posts so I didn't have to go through every post!

Such a scary prospect to get sued for using someone elses work without permission. Of course we don't think of it that way, at least I didn't. My thinking was that if it was on the internet, it was up for grabs as long as you gave proper attribute/credit. NOT SO! I strongly urge you to read Roni's blog post, if you haven't already, to find out how much trouble she got in. She also has links for searching for FREE photos on the internet. To my way of thinking, she sort of took one for the team. Umm, thanks Roni?

Speaking of copyright and trademark issues, Jack Daniel's totally rocks! When Indie author Patrick Wensink’s book, Broken Piano For President, was published recently, the cover was discovered to have a striking resemblance to the Jack Daniels artwork. And by resemblance, I mean the artwork was exactly the same. So what did Mr. Corporate Daniel's do? He sent the nicest cease and desist letter, ever. He not only asked him not to use the cover on the next reprint, but offered to help with the expense of the new cover if Mr. Wensink would agree to change the cover now.

Seriously, how classy is that?

I don't mean to take anything away from the photographers/artists by posting this. You all so deserve to get paid for your work, obviously. I blame it on the global nature of today's media, where everything imaginable can be had at the click of a button, and because it's really so new, as users, we don't really know the laws and ramifications.

But really - Jack Daniel's could have crushed this guy beneath their feet, but they chose to take the high road.

Do you have any copyright stories? Can you share?

Monday, July 23, 2012

BuccFest Wk3: Current Read & TBR's

Welcome to Monday of Week 3 of the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Court Young. You can still join by going HERE.

Today's questions are, "What are you reading?" and "What books are on your shelf?"

What are you reading?

I usually read several books at a time: something for fun, something classic, and something inspirational. Like most writer's, I love to read, and my interests are wide and varied. I generally only get the chance to read at night, so I start with something inspirational before I get too sleepy, and only read about two pages. Yes, it takes a long time to finish the book, but I always want to end my day with something positive, something to think about, something to fill my heart and something to wake up feeling good about!

Most of the classics are free on Amazon Kindle. FREE BOOKS, PEOPLE! Can you believe it?!

Then I read whatever else I'm in the mood for, until I'm too sleepy. These days, I really don't get very far!

Here are my currents:

For fun: Urchin King, a historical fantasy by Katharina Gerlach - who happens to be one of our blogging buddies!

Here's the description from Amazon.

A Classic: Our Mutual Friend, by Charles Dickens, which happens to be FREE on Amazon Kindle!

Here's the description from Amazon.

For Inspiration: Everyday a Friday by Joel Osteen.

Here's a description from Amazon.

What books are on your shelf?

I have so many books on my TBR shelf, so I'll just name a few:

Friday, July 20, 2012

Friday Funnies: Critique Excuses

Used with permission from Debbie Ridpath Ohi at

Who hasn't done this?!

Happy Friday, Everyone!

Have a Great Weekend!

BuccFest Wk2: How I came up with my WIP Idea

Welcome to Friday of Week Two of the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Court Young. You can still join the fray by going HERE.

Today's task is to post about how we came up with the idea for our WIP. But I think how I came up with my main character's name is so much more interesting, so I'm going to share that instead.

How Indigo Eady came to be:

Indigo Eady
Illustration by Corona Zschusschen
I've always been interested in the paranormal, so I knew my main character would be a psychic who could speak to ghosts. I started out wanting to give my characters a charactonym, a descriptive name that matched their personalities. For example, "Malfoy" in the Harry Potter series is latin for "bad faith," or Professor "Lupin" comes from the latin for wolf or wolf-like. I quickly realized, though, that this wasn't going to completely work for me. Since I write paranormal "mysteries," the names would give too much away if I used charactonyms.

However, I was able to come up with a name for my MC that was charactonym-like, by doing a little research. In the late 1990's, new age enthusiasts theorized about a new breed of children that are believed to be the next stage in human evolution. They are more enlightened, empathetic, honest and some hold special psychic abilities. They are called Indigo Children. Hence, the name Indigo! It fit nicely with my character's way of being (honest and empathetic) and her abilities (psychic, ghost-whispering, Psychometry-reading.)

The last name, Eady, was my grandmother's maiden name and was chosen to honor her. She was such a special person in my life and I adored her! Luckily, Indigo fit perfectly with Eady. In addition, my grandmother (Scotch-Irish and Cherokee) had black hair and blue eyes, a very striking combination. And as you can see, my character - Indigo Eady - also has black hair and blue eyes.

And that is how Indigo Eady came to be!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

BuccFest Wk 2: Indigo Eady Character Interview

Indigo Eady
Illustration by Corona Zschusschen
 It's Wednesday of week two of the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Courtney Young. You can still join by going HERE.

Today we are being joined by Indigo Eady, the main character of the Indigo Eady Paranormal Mystery Series. She will be speaking about her role in the first book, Givin' Up The Ghost.

Indigo, how did you come to have a starring role in Givin' Up The Ghost? 

Well, the story is about me and my life, and the first story took place just six months ago, so who better to play the role than me?

Yes, I see your point.

I understand that you don't like people to know about your special abilities. Why is that?

When I was young, I thought everybody could see and speak to ghosts. When I started school, I found out differently. When I'd pass a message from a spirit on to someone, they'd say I was lying. Then I'd get teased and the kids called me a freak and a witch and all sorts of unkind things. Needless to say I didn't have very many friends. That's why I don't like people to know. It makes them uncomfortable.

Can you share a little about these abilities with us?

Yes. I can see and speak to ghosts, and I also do Psychometry.


Psychometry. It's the ability to read the energy or history from a person or object. I'm not very good at it though. Or I should say that I'm not good at controlling it. It often backfires.

What do you mean? Can you give us an example?

Without giving anything away about the book, I can tell you that sometimes when I shake hands with someone, I get a vision of something from their lives, something momentous or important. It runs through my head like a film clip. If that person is violent or has known violence, it can manifest negatively. I have to be very careful about what I touch.

Manifests negatively? I'm not sure I understand.

*Indigo holds her hands out, palms up. Scars of all shapes and sizes criss-cross them* What most often happens is they blister. And I have to be very careful about picking up someone's pint glass, because, *she shrugs*, if they are a big drinker, then chances are I feel the results of that.

Do you mean - you get drunk? Just from touching the glass?

*She nods and looks uncomfortable.* I'd rather not talk about that.

Oh - okay. Then tell us a little more about the ghosts.

Ghosts are usually earth-bound for a reason. They can't cross over until they've resolved whatever it is that's holding them back. When they figure out I can see and speak with them, sometimes they ask for my help.

Sometimes - not always?

No. Some of them seem content as they are. Like Fanny Bishop. She lives at our house.

That's right. Fanny is the nineteenth century madam. You two are pretty close, aren't you?

*She smiles.* Fanny is an absolute sweetheart and I simply adore her.

What about other spirits?

*She sighs* Some of them are  just curious about me. They've heard about me and come to check me out. Sometimes they poke me when I sleep, or pull my hair. Sometimes they want me to pass on a message. It can be quite annoying, actually, because they're pretty active at night. I don't get much sleep.

And sometimes they want you to help solve their murder?

I was wondering when you'd get to that. Yes. Bart Bagley, my friend Badger's dad, asked me to help solve his murder. As you know, that's what Givin' Up The Ghost is about, so I don't want to say too much about it.

How is it working with your new friends? They don't seem to mind about your being psychic.

No, they're great. They don't mind. Simon is my cousin, of course, and my best friend. But when Badger found out about me, he didn't really believe me at first. I had to prove myself. The others, Badger's sister Riley and my friend Cappy, they didn't have trouble believing.

I have to ask this. You have an awful lot of mishaps. What's up with that?

*A big sigh* First, let me set the record straight. I am not clumsy. I'm really not. I'm...a coordinated person who uncoordinated things happen to. It's the ghosts and the Psychometry that keep me off kilter. I don't trip over my own feet or anything like that. I'm usually running from a dark spirit or chasing another one, or...*she pins me with her vivid blue eyes* you could help me with that, you know. You're the writer - you could fix that particular aspect.

*I shake my head.* I just write it as I see it. Besides, I think it's a very endearing trait, that you, um, aren't too steady on your feet.

*She glares at me*

Let's move on to the final question. The one everyone wants to know about...

*A suspicious look from Indigo*

You and Badger. Sparks fly - everyone sees it. And there was that kiss...

We're friends. That kiss was just an investigation technique. You see, we had to pretend like we were a couple so those goons wouldn't know------why are you smiling?

Come on, Indigo. Even you said it was, and I quote, "really good."

For a fake one! I said it was really good for a fake kiss! Badger and I, we're friends. He has a lot of responsibilities now that his dad is dead. He has to help his mom support his brothers and sisters, and run the pub, and go to school. And I'm - I'm still adjusting to...things. Trouble seems to follow me, and who wants to deal with someone with problems like mine?

Uh Huh.

Monday, July 16, 2012

BuccFest Week 2: WIP First Paragraph

Welcome Mateys!

We're in week two of the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Courtney Young. You can still join by going HERE.

Today we're posting the first paragraph of our Work-In-Progress and I cheated a bit. My first paragraph is only twenty-six words - two lines - and so I posted two paragraphs. Do you think anyone will notice?

Anyhoo, my WIP is called Givin' Up The Ghost, a YA Paranormal Mystery. It's the first book in the Indigo Eady Paranormal Mystery Series.


If you're interested in the origin of the phrase, here is a definition:

Give Up The Ghost from The Phrase Finder:

Meaning: To die, or in the case of inanimate objects, to cease working.

Origin: There are many uses of this phrase in the Bible, including this, from Miles Coverdale's Version, 1535, Acts 12:23:

"Immediatly the angell of the LORDE smote him, because he gaue not God the honoure: And he was eaten vp of wormes, and gaue vp the goost."


For a brief description of the series, watch my first attemp at a book trailer - it's only one-minute long:


Givin' Up The Ghost
First Two Paragraphs

“What the...” the guy sputtered. I lay sprawled across him, our eyes locked in stunned surprise, our bodies entwined in a tangle of arms and legs.

I chanced a worried glance back toward the alley I had barreled from, but the thing was gone. I sighed. Not a graceful escape, I’ll admit. But all things considered, this new situation I suddenly found myself in was a vast improvement.


Indigo Eady, my main character, will be here on Wednesday to be interviewed, so please come back. After the interview, she'll be anwering any questions you may have.

Friday, July 13, 2012

BuccFest Day 3: Thea Gregory Interview

Welcome to Buccaneer Blogfest Day 3, hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Courtney Young. Today, I'm interviewing the person below me on the linky list, Thea Gregory. My first author interview, by the way.

You can still join the party by going to the linky HERE.

Thea Gregory
On your series:

I don’t know a thing about zombies, except for what I’ve seen briefly on T.V., where zombies drag themselves slowly through the street “chasing” screaming people.

Q. Can you tell us about Zombie Bedtime Stories and/or give us a brief description/synopsis?

Zombie Bedtime Stories is an ongoing series of novelettes that take place in my own little zombie apocalypse in the year 2035. So far, each story had been taken from a different character’s perspective, but each installment develops on the last and contributes to the larger whole. Some characters never meet, or are only influenced by the stories of those before them. It’s a bit of a panoramic view.

The story so far:

#1: Locked In – A short story about a paramedic, Haley.On a call, she gets attacked by an old friend and wakes up a zombie the next morning.

#2 Locked Out – A team of scientists is tasked with determining the cause of the violence. Will they find the cause before they are wiped out by the spreading plague?

#3 Deadlocked– Haley’s partner, Frank, realizes something is very wrong soon after he drops her off at home. However, nobody listens to him until it’s too late. Can he escape their overrun city and save his two friends?

#4 Bedlam – Corporal Samantha Henderson is a member of a military organization that specializes in putting down riots, which plague society in 2035. They weren’t prepared for this one. Can she do the right thing in a world gone wrong? (Upcoming!)

Q. What exactly is a Zombie and how do you become one?

A zombie is a person who loses all conscious control over their body and becomes compelled to attack any and all uninfected. Their strength and ability to ignore major injuries is greatly increased. You become a zombie by being bitten by one, scratched or even after being exposed to some for a long period of time.

Q. Have Zombies evolved since the first one? Do you know how the first one came to be or how they originated?

They haven’t evolved as of yet, the series is still young so I won’t rule it out. I know how they originated, but I’m not telling. That’s a story for part 8 or 9.

Q. How do you kill them?

Massive damage, a gunshot wound to the head or by burning them alive. Fire is determined to be the only surefire means of eliminating the airborne component of the plague.

Q. Did you take the standard zombie theme and go with it? Or did you give zombie looks and personalities a twist of your own? How are your zombies different?

I changed it up a little. They prefer flesh to brains, because I find the BRAINS!!!bit a little silly in all honesty. As well, my zombies are strong and fast. Shambling zombies just aren’t fun to write. The final difference is that these zombies aren’t mindless corpses. The person they used to be is still there, trapped inside, forced to watch the atrocities they’re committing.

Q. Do you have continuing characters?

Yes! The first continuing character is Frank, Haley’s partner. There’s a new one coming back in part five. After part four, most of the major characters will have been introduced.

Q. How tough is it to characterize a zombie?

Pretty tough, actually. You’re trying to make things interesting from the perspective of a person who can’t talk and has no personal agency. You’re made to deal with the psychology, reactions and descriptions more than if you’re dealing with a live person.

Q. Who is your current or favorite zombie MC? Tell us about her/him. Do we cheer, love, hate her/him?

Presently, I have only one MC that happens to be a zombie. She’s Haley (from Locked In.), and you want to give the poor girl a big hug, while simultaneously screaming and running away. You can cheer her, too, if massacring friends and loved ones is something you enjoy.

Q. How can I tell if someone is a zombie?

A zombie is typically covered in blood, and sporting grievous wounds that don’t appear to diminish their functions. As well, zombies like to scream and charge down any human they can see, regardless of the danger to themselves. Basically, stay away from loiterers/mobs/rioters who look like they’ve been in a fight.

Q. Should I be afraid to sleep at night? How can I protect myself?

Be very afraid, but also aware that daytime doesn’t deter these ghouls one bit. Get a gun, aim for the head, and stay away from the bodies. Bonus tip: If they can’t see/hear you, then they won’t attack. You may not want to stand upwind of one, though.

On writing/publishing:

Q. What’s in your writing future?

My first novel, Sanity Vacuum, is being released later this year through Curiosity Quills Press. Moving forward, I have the sequel started and I’m making my way through my next Zombie Bedtime Story.

In the long run, my future holds zombies, horror, science fiction and some offbeat/epic fantasy. Additionally, it contains many permutations of the above genres.

Q. What made you decide to self-publish? Any advice to those thinking about self publishing?

Initially, it was because the Zombie Bedtime Stories didn’t really fit into the scope of any traditional publisher that existed. It’s a series of novelettes/novellas that’s laden with Easter eggs, forward and backwards continuity and other good things. In short, I didn’t want to lose control or be pressured into changing my vision of the series.

As for advice, I’d definitely say to be yourself. Embrace your strengths and seriously consider your weaknesses. Don’t look at everyone you interact with as a potential sale for your book. Talk with your fellow writers, don’t spam and either hire an editor or have several well-read and educated friends read through your stuff.

Whatever you do, don’t exist or create in a vacuum. There’s a huge network of authors out there, take advantage of the community. Get your feet wet, do some interviews, try a blog tour or a blog hop. Be innovative, be different and be yourself.

Q. Do you have a day job or do you make a living from your writing?

I’m working a temp job right now as an administrative clerk, and I’m going back to finish my degree in September. I’m pretty young, and the future is a big place. It may take a year, or five, but someday I hope to support myself with writing. Freedom 35?

Q. Any advice for other writers?

Most of it was covered in the advice for self-publishers part. Be awesome. There, one final gem from me. But, if you can’t be awesome, at least don’t mouth off to reviewers.

Thea's bio:

Thea Gregory originally hails from rural English Quebec and grew up with a keen appreciation of science and nature. These interests have followed her throughout life—the farm was lonely, and thus engendered a fanatical love of reading and books. She went on to study physics at university, and worked odd jobs until the writing bug bit. Now, she writes science fiction and horror in the comfort of her Montreal home.



twitter: @TheaIsis


Amazon author page:



I learned ever so much about zombies and I'm especially grateful for the tip on how to KILL THEM! I'll be keeping a gun next to my bed along with a torch, gasoline and matches! Oh, and I'll have to stay healthy to keep my nose in tip-top shape, too.

Thanks for sharing with us Thea! I am so intrigued that I'm on my way now to pick up your first book.

Friday Funnies and Social Media

Welcome to Friday Funnies!

This is true in an oddly disturbing sort of way!

I enjoy social media, but it does tend to take away from my
work because it's so time consuming. I wish it paid the bills, though.

How much time do you spend on social media?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

June Goal Results and July Goals

So I've sort of been called out by my friend Deborah Walker about posting my June goal results and new goals for July. Which is the whole point in telling the world what my goals are. It keeps me accountable.

So here we go!

June Goals:
  • Write 50,000 words toward my next novel in the Indigo Eady Mystery series, A Guilty Ghost Surprised. Goal! Completed 50K+ doing BuNoWriMo.
  • Read four books. Fail. I only read three: End of Days, Wilde's Fire and Labyrinth.
  • Post 2-3 blog posts per week. Goal! I posted ten times!
  • Visit 25 awesome blogs per week. Not sure. I didn't keep track, but going through my email, I visited at least 75...I'll try keeping better track.
I'm very happy with June results:)

July Goals:

  • Write a synopsis of a novela idea I had during BuNo which involves some different sort of characters in a different sort of world. Intrigued? Good!
  • Complete 150 pages of final (hopefully) edits on Givin' Up The Ghost.
  • Paste together, A Guilty Ghost Surprised. This is what I wrote during BuNoWriMo, but I zipped through the outline and ended up writing a bunch of separate scenes that now need to be added. Not a small job, as I have to now figure out where the buggers go! 
  • Read three books.
  • Platform build for my new blog.
  • Contact 50 followers from my old blog and invite them to re-follow me on my new blog.  
  • Visit 25 awesome blogs per week.
Yeah, not much writing going on in July, because there's too much other stuff going on.

What are your goals for July?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

BuccFest: Day Two

Welcome to Buccaneer BlogFest! It's hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Court Young as a means to build our platforms and learn more about our fellow writers in the blogging community.

You can still sign up HERE.

Why did I start blogging?

The one where Lucy tries to get an eye full of Bill Holden

I love rubbing elbows with writers. I want to be a best-selling, world famous author some day and I'm hoping some of that writerly magic will rub off on me. But I'm not the starstruck Lucy Ricardo of the writing world, I swear. If anyone says I am, just ignore them. I'm a bit of a stalker, that's all. Despite rumors to the contrary, I did not break into Stephen King's hotel room and steal his, uh, um, anything. And that wasn't me who showed up sloshed to J.K. Rowling's suite demanding she bring Dobby back to life! It was just someone who looked like me. By the way, is there anyone out there who can get me an intro to J.K. Rowling? Just asking.

Okay, all joking aside now. I touched on why I started blogging in my last B.B. post. I began my blogging career writing about running and health, until I came across the writing community. I had no idea you all existed! It was like fate, with everything falling into place as it should, as it was always meant to. It was all part of my new beginnings as a writer.

Of course, I'm no expert. Not even close. My blog topics on writing started out pretty meager, indeed. What did I know? Not much. But there are tons of people who know more about the subject than I do, and I've learned so much by following them on their journeys.

Here's why I blog:
  • To befriend like-minded people, to give/receive encouragement
  • To follow writer's with more experience to learn from their accomplishments and mistakes, and to receive advice
  • To follow writer's with less or equal experience to swap and share information, and yes, I learn from them, too
  • To learn the craft of writing (strong verbs, weak verbs? Huh?)
  • To learn how to edit (you mean I can overuse "was"?)
  • To learn about publishing options
  • And finally, to build a platform for when I'm ready to publish.
What are my goals for my blog?

I've thought a lot about this lately. That's why I split my running blog from my writing blog. I'm preparing to publish and become an author and wanted a blog make-over that was professional and focused more on that goal.

Here are some goals for my blog:
  • Post 2-3 days per week on a schedule (MWF?)
  • Post about what I'm learning, whether it's the writing, editing or publishing process
  • Host and interview more authors (I love helping authors with their platforms and getting the word out on their work)
  • To promote myself and my work more

Why do you blog and what are your blogging goals?

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

End of Days Book Review

First, let me say that Roland Yeomans is one of the kindest bloggers in the blogoverse. I commented how much I adored one of his characters, Alice Wentworth, and he gifted me the book, End of Days, featuring her as the protagonist! Thank you Roland!

Also, this is my first book review. Ever. And I'm kind of nervous. If I mess this up, it's my fault, not Roland's.

So here we go!


St. Marrok's. The most eerie high school in which you will ever die. Some call it the high school for the damned. The damned merely laugh.

Located in the lovely, Katrina devastated French Quarter, it stands as it has always stood since the sky chariot of the Queen of the Tuatha de Danann was shot down over Roswell, New Mexico in June 1947.

St. Marrok's is a school run by the Sidhe for all the preternatural children of America. A few mortal teenagers are invited for the amusement and education in the frailties of humans for the Sidhe.

Now, the celestial configurations are almost in allignment. The Nameless Ones are nearly through the frayed barrior between their dimensions and ours. The plan set into motion in 1947 by the Tuatha de Danann are finished.

Plots and counter-plots by Sidhe, revenants, and Olympian/Asgardian factions are all coming to a head. The End of Days is at hand.

And only Alice Wentworth, a Victorian ghoul, with a rag-tag group of misfit students and human teachers stand a chance at stopping it. All it will take is their lives and all they hold dear.

My Review:

Protagonist Alice Wentworth is a 175-year-old Victorian teenage ghoul. She is the sweetest ghoul ever, never mind that she must eat human flesh to survive. It gives "fast food" a whole new meaning, but it's only the scum of the earth that she consumes, so no big loss. I mean, what's a ghoul to do?

The cast of characters is eclectic to say the least. A ghoul, a revenant priest still in love with his ex-wife, wolfling, hellhounds and other creatures, not to mention the real-life historical characters who weave in and out of the story. The characters are mostly larger than life, with egos to match, but even larger hearts.

Alice and her rag-tag group of friends, in particular sisters Trish and Becca, infiltrate St. Marrok's, a school for the preternatural with a few humans thrown in (proving they're not biased - everyone has the same right to die), where the master plotters reside. The plan is to thwart The Nameless Ones from taking over the world, fight the other wannabe's along the way, and in danger all the while of President Bush pushing The Nuke Button.

But first and foremost, they must stay alive.

No need for too much worry, though, because Alice "The Wentworth" is one kick-butt ghoulfriend. Her sense of right, wrong and justice for all is highly tuned. With her super powers and the dead love of her life, Victor Standish, advising from inside her head, the ghoul can't lose.

End of Days is a dark urban action-packed fantasy. A plot expertly weaved with a mix of Indian and Celtic lore, preternatural and human beings, fictional and real-life historical characters, all occupying the devasted streets of the French Quarter in the aftermath of Katrina in a post apocalyptic setting.

But at the End of the Day, End of Days was about love and friendship. And that's why, in my book, End of Days gets five stars!

You can buy Roland Yeoman's books at

Monday, July 9, 2012

Buccaneer Blogfest: About Me

Ahoy, writing mateys. Welcome to the first day of the Buccaneer Blogfest hosted by Sharon Bayliss and Court Young. It's all about building our platforms and meeting new writers and friends. The plan is to post Monday, Wednesday and Friday based on prompts given, between July 9 - August 3. To read more about it, or to sail with the rest of us pirates on the high blogging seas, go HERE.

Day one involves telling you a little about me and my blog. So here it goes!

Some of you already know me as Lady Gwen from Run Gwen, Run! Write Gwen, Write! I have been in the blogosphere since 2010, first to write about my endeavor to get healthy and lose weight through running. THEN! I discovered a community of writer's I didn't know existed! It was divine intervention - I had given up a good paying job in San Diego and moved to the Rockies to write. So my blog became a mixture of running and writing posts, before it turned mostly to writing. Run Gwen, Run! became very crowded, so I shanghaied some of my followers and started a new author blog here.

And here we are!

I'm fifty-two years old. A little older, I think, than the average blogger I mix with here. Most of you are my daughters age. *snort* What can I say? I'm a late bloomer. I graduated from college with a BA in English when I was forty-one. In my family, IF we graduated from high school, we knew we were going to work. College was for rich people. I didn't know it was an option. But I felt so blessed when I finally did go, that I worked my butt off and graduated magna cum laude.

Have you ever said to yourself, some day I'm going to do this or that? Maybe it's travel, skydiving or scubadiving. Or writing a book. My "some day" finally came. Life is way too short to not follow your dreams, and that's why I'm here.

I write young adult fiction. My first book, Givin' Up The Ghost, is in final editing (I hope). I just finished the first draft of my second book, A Guilty Ghost Surprised. They are both part of The Indigo Eady Paranormal Mystery Series. I'm seriously thinking about self-publishing.

I hope you're still awake after reading this!

I can't wait to blog-hop around to read about your adventures riding the high seas of writing.

Want to join? Sign up below: