Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Without Utopia Blog Hop

I'm so honored to be part of the Utopia blog hop. Thanks for stopping by! 

As we approach the FIFTH year of the amazing UtopiaCon, we want to give back to the organizers who have given so much inspiration and support to us. A conference of this magnitude--of this level of MAGIC--is not cheap.

Over the past few months, we’ve learned that organizers, friends, and even family have come forward and given from their own personal funds in order to help move Utopia forward another year and we want to pay them back. We want to FIGHT FOR OUR WRITE and do our part to help.

This year especially, we'd like to make sure they  go into planning sessions with an extra boost to it's bottom line.

So if you've ever been touched by Utopia, or if you love any of the authors, bloggers, or readers who have, please take a moment to give a few dollars. This will insure the inspiration continues.

We hope you'll be led to give from the heart, but to sweeten the deal we have some MAJORLY EPIC incentives! In addition to what you’ll get from the Go Fund Me organizers (see the donation page to read about those), you’ll also get entered to win any one of these amazing raffle prizes listed in the rafflecopter below!

Prizes like this one:
 

And in order to help convey the magical sense of community Utopia has instilled in its attendees, I want everyone to know that...

WITHOUT UTOPIA I NEVER WOULD HAVE...

There is no purchase or donation necessary to enter to enter the drawing, but we encourage you to give even just $10 in order to help move us toward our big goal. And don’t forget, every donation of at least $10 earns you free books!

How to enter:

  1. Go visit #UtopiaLove’s Go Fund Me page and make a small donation (this isn’t necessary, but we would be so jazzed if you did this first! AND this earns you an automatic prize based on your donation level. Check your email to collect.)
  2. Click through any one of the rafflecopter entry methods. Complete the necessary item and get entered for all of the raffle prizes listed below.
  3. Click through to the list of other participating authors & bloggers to read how Utopia has changed them!

That’s it! Thanks!

Participating Blogs:

Kallie Ross           Kallieross.com
Susan Burdorf        www.facebook.com/susanburdorfauthor
Jo Michaels         http://jomichaels.blogspot.com
Carlyle Labuschagne     Www.worldsawaybookblog.blogspot.com
Shantella Benson    https://thewordsmithe.wordpress.com/
Shelley Custer        www.stalkingshelves.blogspot.com
S.M. Boyce         smboyce.com/boyce-blog
Komali da Silva    www.komalidasilva.com
PK Hrezo        Http://Pk-Hrezo.blogspot.com
Elisabeth Kauffman    http://writingrefinery.blogspot.com
Patti Larsen        www.pattilarsen.com
Michaela Mills        http://www.michaelamillswrites.com/blog
Ginny Gallagher    http://ginnygallagher.com/blog/
Liz Long        http://lizclong.com
Raine Thomas        http://rainethomas.com
Stacey Marie Brown    http://www.staceymariebrown.com/
Heather Hildenbrand    http://www.heatherhildenbrand.com
Amy Evans        http://amyevansbooks.com/

New cover for FIGHTING FOR INFINITY

Kindrily fans, the FIGHTING FOR INFINITY cover received a face lift. 
I had been trying to ignore the fact that I didn't love the FFI cover. Out of sight, out of mind. But recently, while attending Indie BookFest, I had copies of FFI in my hands several times. I kept glancing at the cover, cringing, and looking away. I decided it was time to give it some love. I adore the story inside of the cover. It deserved better representation.

Back when the original FFI cover was created, I wanted it to be unique. I actually took the photos used on the covers for Grasping at Eternity and Taking Back Forever. As in I'm the photographer. They are original covers and I wanted that same originality for the third book in the series.

However, my mediocre photography skills, combined with a much-too-busy vision of what I wanted on the cover, resulted in a final product that I didn't love. My designer did the best he could given the really bad photos I provided him. Three pictures. Three separate images with different lighting, odd cut-off places, and no cohesive way to blend them together. He did the best he could with my silly vision, but in hindsight he should have told me no. No to all of it. lol. We both learned a lot from that experience.
I love the people who posed for the pictures on the original FFI cover. They are dear friends. I'm sad those images couldn't miraculously be made good enough to use without looking so Photoshop-y, but they can't. I accepted that truth, apologized to the models, and promised to make it up to them in the future.

I asked the designer, Steve Graham of The Infinity Creative, to redo the FFI cover at the same time he was designing a new full cover spread for my other series, Virtual Arcana. He asked when I needed it ready. I said yesterday. Ha. (I'm not a patient person.) Due to his busy schedule, we both agreed that he wouldn't be able to finish it as quickly as I wanted, so with his blessing, my other fabulous designer agreed to help.

Michelle Argyle of Melissa Williams Design is the talent behind all of the covers in my Tangled Tides series. Thankfully, she was available to help and rush it for me. She collaborated with Steve, and in a week the new FFI cover was done.

It's beautiful. Now, I will be proud to hand a paperback to a reader. It's not an original photo taken by me, but that's okay. The final product is a better looking cover. I'd love to hear what you think.

And if you haven't read the series yet, the first book, Grasping at Eternity, is free on most ebook retailers.

The new paperback version should be available in the next week or so. (Which means the current version will be a collector's edition if I ever become famous!) ((Ha.))


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Forgot to post this yesterday, so...
My weekly vlog post in which I celebrate my future trip to London to attend the first ChapterCon. And, of course, I celebrate Snatch style.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Writing Update via Vlogging

Want to know what I'm working on?
Here you go...

Friday, July 24, 2015

INDIE BOOKFEST AND A GIVEAWAY!

You don't have to go to Indie BookFest to win this giveaway, but it would be awesome to see you there. I'm giving away a 6 month premium subscription to Grammarly. (More about that soon.)

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Indie BookFest 2015 is a three-day event celebrating indie/hybrid/traditional authors and artists and their freedom of expression. Join some of your favorite authors (including me!) for three days filled with a book signing, sessions, lunch, author meet and greets, an after party, and great fun!
You won’t want to miss the sessions throughout the day, where panelists (like me!) will be speaking on a variety of topics relevant to readers, book lovers, and writers. 
 
Indie BookFest 2015 will be held at Caribe Royale in Orlando, Fl., on July 31-August 2, 2015 
The Caribe Royale is located just 1.5 miles from the Walt Disney World® area!
Come hang out with me for a drink by the pool. :)
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Over 70 authors representing indie, hybrid and traditional publishing will be featured at this premier author and reader event.

  Keynote speaker is multi-award winning author Jana Oliver.

This weekend is all about readers connecting and finding new authors to love. There are reader panels, a Fan Fare where readers can hang out with the authors, a Gothic Romance party, a gourmet luncheon, Author sponsored parties, and a book signing. 
Plus, I'll be giving away some yummy treats related to my books, and some pretty nifty swag.
ATTENDING AUTHORS...                                                
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Buy Tickets  General Admission Tickets are only $15!! HERE

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Book your HOTEL! We have special pricing for our event.

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Stay up to date on news. Join our Facebook Group
And now about my giveaway. 
*throws confetti*
 https://grammarly.com/grammar-check
 One lucky winner will receive a 6 month premium subscription to Grammarly. 
This program is amazing and a must have for any writer. It catches so many errors, suggests improvements, teaches you as you go, and will make you loved and adored by your beta readers and editors. I absolutely love it. 
(Disclaimer: I do not work for Grammarly, and I'm not receiving compensation for this prize. My opinions are my own but the prize was graciously donated by them. )
You can enter multiple ways through this Rafflecopter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, June 1, 2015

The Future Is Now

This past Saturday, I was honored to be part of the first Writer's Festival at Blake High School in Tampa, Florida.

Students, teachers, and some other local writers attended to hear presenters (including me!) speak about topics including publishing, poetry, fantasy, and more. It was energizing and inspiring to be around so many talented and enthusiastic people.

I met students who were so passionate, smart, and eager to learn; it was truly heartwarming to look at them and see others who love writing as much as I do. And at such a young age! I can't wait to see what kind of greatness they put out into the world.

Huge thanks to author and teacher, Cassandra Curry, for inviting me to such a wonderful event. 

I wish I had taken more photos, but it was such a busy whirlwind of a day that I forgot about my camera. Here's what I do have to share...

Me with uber talented author Marie Jaskulka. Go check out her debut verse novel, The Lost Marble Notebook.

Marie presenting in her cool mix tape shirt.
Me talking about writing fantasy/sci-fi.

And I know some of you want the awesome shirt I'm wearing, so here, go order yourself one..
How was your weekend? 


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Write. Read. Imagine. Create. Learn. Love. Live. Repeat.