Autumn Leaves

Current Reading:  The Romanovs: 1613-1918 by – Simon Sebag Montefiore (My library check out expired before I could finish it. I am a sad panda)

Current Listening: Lindsey Stirling – Something Wild ft. Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness (From Disney’s Pete’s Dragon)

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So, I have been a little shy about updating the blog these last few weeks. Life has been busy.  We have been getting back into the rhythm of life after vacation and school starting.  I blinked and we are five days into September.  My sixteen year old is now seventeen and time keeps plodding away. To me, the best news is that fall is right right around the corner.   What is your favorite season and why?

Am I the only one who prefers the crisp air of autumn and the crunch of dead leaves to summer’s heat? I love the bite of cold (or hot) apple cider and the creepy feeling that always accompanies October”s arrival.  I love corn mazes and hay rides and do not do anywhere near as much as I would like to in the fall.  Perhaps we can change that this year.

Oh and…in case you are not counting:

FOURTY DAYS UNTIL SHADOW’S JOURNEY RELEASES!!!!

If you would like to attend the cover reveal for Shadow’s Journey,  please drop into my Facebook page and the event to let me know you’re coming.   I can’t wait to share the cover with all of you.  This was a new type of design for my books and may lead to a new look for the series as a whole in the distant future.  I like the covers where they are for the moment.

I have a challenge going on right now.  My Facebook page is up to 93 likes.  Help a girl out if you like what I do and follow the blog.  I’d love to hit 100 by release day.  Release day is October 15. So please, if you could. Like my author page, share it,  comment on it. I’m always available for questions or comments. Drop me a message. I don’t bite.

 

 

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No sleep…til GenCon…

If you sung along to that in your head, bravo.  Anyone in my immediate family who reads this is completely aware that I will actually be sleeping the next  day or so.  I’m kind of a pita with no sleep.  (Just ask my husband.)

No current listening/reading today because this is just a quick note to you lovely folks that I will be on hiatus from tomorrow morning through August 24th. No blog updates, photos when I get back. I am going to leave you with the latest teaser from book 5, Shadow’s Journey.  Let me know what you think. Until then later, gang. Take care. 🙂

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Turn and face the strange.

Current Listening:  “Eternal” – Evanescence

Current Reading:    Catherine the Great : Portrait of a Woman – Robert K. Massie

So, a few housekeeping updates for those of you that have not poked around the site.  Yes,  I updated and rearranged a little.   On the right you can now see my twitter feed and click to like my Facebook page.  So I made it a little easier for those of you who follow this blog to see what else I am up to.   Also, for those of you that have not subscribed to the newsletter and may be interested in Nicholas’ story, current events and a fun little thing called Sandra’s Corner,  I have added the newsletter archives to the top menu above.  Go check it out.  If you like it, click the subscribe link up top.   Please feel free to contact me with questions or feedback on the new design.

Also,  a few countdowns of note:

3 Days until Vacation

8 days until GenCon 50

67 Days until Shadow’s Journey release party.

Now, for those of you itching for the cliffhanger with Lily Eisen,  by all means…here goes.

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“Easy Lils.”  Jaylor’s voice crooned in her ears as he caught her and eased their descent.  He shifted his body so he would protect her from gravity’s inevitable impact.  “Go for your emergency gem.  Calm…that’s my girl.” He murmured as a patient parent would to a child facing a difficult lesson.  “Focus. Trigger.”  Jaylor’s tones were gentle and soon enough the weight of her body against his was gone.   Emergency gems ,  when activated,  all were created to send the users to the same place.  With a flex of his element, Jaylor slowed his descent with the night wind and then vanished before he hit the ground.

Marcus Jade was pacing the room when Lily appeared in his sister’s chamber.  Alexandra tutted his overprotective streak and guided the shaken woman to a chair before her brother pounced upon her person to assure himself of her safety.   Alexandra settled before Lily, meeting the girl’s green eyes with her own sea-shaded gaze.  Lily trembled and before she voiced her first thought, Alexandra assured her on gentle tones. “Jaylor will join us shortly. All emergency gems are built to bring their users to me for security and healing if needed. He knows where you are.”

That soothed the woman who,  during her entire existence within the Guild, had never had someone so openly attempt to take her life.  “Good.  Let the watchdog go before I explain what happened.”  A grin tugged at the corners of the Sorceress’ mouth as she stepped aside.  As soon as she did,   Lily found herself  enveloped in the warmth of Marc’s arms.  He murmured his fears and his heart all at once.  His gentle concern broke her in the face of what was a terrorizing affair.

The force of his emotions surfaced in his eyes. That depth brought tears to her own. “I am fine, Marc.” She murmured.  “I told you I would.”  She spoke as those tears drifted down her cheeks.  “Trust, remember?”  He nodded and that was when the delicate clearing of Jaylor’s throat stilled the moment.   “I was pushed.”  She responded to the question her favorite Shadow had not voiced.  She pushed from Marc’s arms and approached Jaylor.  When his arms closed around her,  she finally relaxed.   “Thank you.”

“You’re part of the world I need to keep safe. Anytime.”  Jaylor promised then released her.   Marc felt the spike in her emotions. He understood Jaylor could get to her faster. He was in Mornesse, Marc was in the capital.  Lily’s panic was what struck him first when he reached for her.  “Tell me what you remember.”  And with that, they settled in to figure out what happened on that Mornesse rooftop.

Updates of unusual size…

Current listening:  Live for What I’d Die For – Jess Mills

Current Reading:  The Tommyknockers – Stephen King

Hello!  After much back and forth with Amazon,  Shadow’s Journey is complete! I have a few advance copies in my hot little hands.  I have held the book in my hands, looked through and just..amazing. It truly never gets old.  I don’t know about any other author but I look at the cover and I think to myself  “Hey, I did that…”

74 days until release day,  if I can math tonight.  October 15, I can’t wait! Correct my math if I’m wrong.  Also, the teasers on my Facebook page are still being posted and will continue until release day.  Please head over, check them ought and if you aren’t a follower of my page,  sign up and share, share, share.  I am planning a digital giveaway of Light’s Guide before the new book’s release.

So,  I had a nag at the back of my head with the song above. Hope you enjoy the little snippet below. As always, feedback is welcome.

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Be soft but hide it well Lils. At the time she did not realize it was the last lesson she would ever give her. Lily watched the haphazard streets that were Mornesse’s inner city. For a moment, Lily Eisen’s mind was caught up in the past. That softness she hid in the core of her. In her time with the Guild, many had tried to beat that out of her. In a way, they tried to beat her femininity out of her. Tonight, she walked the rooftops to see what she could see. A few nights straight, patrols were whispering of returning to the castle with one less man than they left with.

Under normal circumstances this would not be cause for alarm. Death in combat was not a truth unfamiliar to her or any man who patrolled the city. However, five men in the course of a week was unusual. Unrest still lingered even in light of the current regime’s agenda. To her credit, Jocelyn wanted to see her people fed, housed and happy. She wanted them to heal. People who detested peace existed every day. Many of them belonged to the Guild. Lily’s emerald eyes shined in the in moonlight as she watched the patrol pass below. When she heard the distant clatter of their armor fade, she knew it was time to move on. Dark confidence echoed in her every movement as she followed them. She could outwit patrolmen any day of the week. They were easy prey for one such as herself.

Marc Jade should have been easy prey. A small, fond scowl curled her lips. Her quarry moved on through the city streets. Easy prey, right, and a Kindred to walk in sunlight. Lily thought as she moved with silent grace through the darkness. To this day, she wondered where in the Light blasted world the Guild had gotten their information about the man. The men below rounded the corner and she followed, moving from rooftop to rooftop. She found hand holds in places most men would never have. She swung from each point like an acrobat. Her skill was part her favorite Shadow’s teaching and her own inherent grace. Lily had none of the blessing the royal families had. In that sense, she supposed she was a bit of an outcast.

Lack of magic did not stop her from beating his lordship’s ass on a regular basis. She thought with a satisfied grin. Lily was born for the hunt. Though there was no prey to capture tonight, there was always a hunt. Always a purpose to track. Only once had she ever deigned to lower her standards and hunt alongside nobles that were of her rank. Her excitement at the prospect lasted all of five minutes when she realized none of the “ladies” were going to participate in the actual hunt. Their sole purpose was to stroke the lordlings’ egos and be pretty little ornaments. Lily had declined every invitation that arrived for that particular activity after that single incident. None of those simpering twits would ever understand the honor of the hunt and the satisfaction of a clean kill.

Her eyes flickered to the group below her. So far, no harm had come to those patrolling tonight. What was the purpose of picking off patrolmen? “Why, to attract little ragmuffins…” A voice taunted two hand connected with her back and sent her tumbling from the rooftop. The ground was coming too far to fast for her to adjust or reach for a handhold without dislocating every joint from shoulder to wrist. Her grasp would not hold her whole body weight. She did the math seconds too late. The tactic was meant to flush her out but who would be so foolish? Just when I had a life to fight for…

 

Elusive inspiration

Current listening:  You guessed it,  Linkin Park  =P

As writers we all struggle with blocks,  we have times when our muse gives us the middle finger and takes a hiatus.   I read a blog a few days ago that describes this so personally, so clearly that I had to share it with you.  Thank you to Mia Sutton for allowing me to share it with all of you.  Go check her out! She’s amazing.  She’s funny and candid. I think that’s what appeals to me most.  You see her struggles and her honesty about life, motherhood and just everything shines through. Here’s the post:

When Inspiration Strikes: An Ode to My Muse

 

My December

Current reading:  The Godfather Returns

Inspired by:  Heavy,  My December   Pick a Linkin Park song tonight

So,  I wish I could find the right words to describe such a loss.  The music industry lost a great creator today.  I love this band.   I have followed their evolution since Hybrid Theory.  That album has so many songs that talk to me.  I remember hearing Closer on the radio for the first time and I was like “okay guys,  I’m listening.”    The next song that hooked me was Crawling.   The song that made me go out in the album was In The End.   Once I listened to the album as a whole,  the song Papercut stuck with me.

I thought, at the time and quite mistakenly, that they were a one genre, one style kind of band and then someone played My December for me.  So much heartache lingered in that song.   I remember crying the first time I heard it because I was fighting my own demons at the time. I remember the chord it struck.  I still have a hard time with this song.  It’s so…achingly lonely.  I can listen to it now without tears but it still makes my heart hurt.

As time went on, more of their songs hooked me but I don’t think I really started listening to them closely until I heard the song  “What I’ve Done.”  That song is about atonement.   It’s my interpretation, if you disagree, well  good for you.  =P   Then I started going back and catching up.  Now,  I write to their music.  There something in the tenor and lyrics that inspire me.  It’s with that in mind that I started the writing below.   This has no bearing on future or past plotlines,  just kind of a what if in my writer’s mind.

Thank you for the impact your music had, and still has on my life.  You will be missed.

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Another moment more, Alexandra.   Please. Nicholas snapped awake with a gasp.  In dreams,  she haunted him.    In his dreams, she laughed, she breathed, she teased him without mercy.  Fate took her first and left him to rot,  he felt.  Sea-shaded eyes and platinum curls danced just beyond his field of vision.  Fate above he missed her.  In a sudden rage Nicholas swatted the alarm clock from the bedside stand.

He cursed.  What he wanted most in this world he could not have.  To Nicholas, this was Fate’s path for him—suffer and wait.   Just thinking about the fact exhausted him.  Why hadn’t the cup passed to another?  Nicholas watched his children; his grandchildren pass on but the burden of Johl’s book remained with him.    The thought annoyed him more than he could give voice to.   The temptation to just let the world burn was strong.  Yet, in his mind, his duty was a yoke that he continued to pull.  Like a faithful jackass.  He thought with a scowl.

Fate’s tides were swirling around Kaylen Burke;  he could see the path ahead clearer than the woman herself.  He knew soon enough an adversary would present themselves.

Yet he could not find it in his heart to care about this conflict.  All that he loved and knew was gone.   You said once that duty’s halls were cold, beloved.  How could you have known I would walk them without you?  If she had, his beloved Sorceress never said a word.  He knew she never would have.   What would be would be,  she would have said. If she were here.   If this, if that,  if solved nothing.  If did not return her to his arms!

In frustration,  Nicholas plowed his fingers through his graying hair and rose from bed.    Again,  he was alone in his prayers.  The small altar in his bedchamber was a relic by today’s standards.  Tess Starson and Emma Jacobs blessed the small marble stone  for them the day they were wed.  Engraved in the stone were their names, the date they were wed.  This stone would go for a fortune in the modern world. Historians would have a field day with the names and dates engraved.  In the modern world, it would be the only proof of their lives together.

For him, their life lived on within.   Fate grant me the strength to carry this burden alone but,  forgive me my wish to be with her, with them… these trials are too much this time.  Light grant me the peace to see it through.  In a whisper of movement, Nicholas would have sworn he felt her gentle, familiar touch.  “Fate let me come home.”  He whispered.  For the first time in his long, long life Nicholas Taltos lost hope in the world surrounding him.


Just a snippet that twirled out of my fingertips, dear readers.  I promise you.  It was just an idea that came through while listening to that song.   I do not know that  I could do that to the poor man.  He’s suffered enough,  I think.

In random bits of news,  head over to my Facebook page to check out teasers for the Maeselorian series and the new book Shadow’s Journey.  My editor,  the amazing and talented,  Kymber Nations,  has been gracious enough to help me design some absolutely gorgeous images that I get to share with you as the release date for the new book approaches.   Please, check them out.  Comment, like the page and hang out.  I have a lot more in store as the days get closer.

Stay tuned to Facebook Live on October 1, 2017 at 7:30 PM EST for the cover reveal of Shadow’s Journey.  Here are the teasers I have posted so far. The first is from the upcoming novel,  Shadow’s Journey.   The second is from book two,  Duty’s Song. 

 

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As always, let me know what you guys think.

Take care!

 

Tick-tock

Current listening:  My husband and our friend playing DC Deckbuilding.

Well, I have a lot of nifty news to share.  Twenty four hours and I’ll get to preview the final layout!

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Shadow’s Journey has been submitted for Amazon’s review well ahead of schedule.  Make sure you check me out on Facebook Live October 1st at 7 pm for the cover reveal!   Now begins reviews to make sure the layout is right.  This part is usually the most stressful me because I go through page by page to determine if the layout is right or text needs to shift.    I get talked down from the ledge more than once during this time period.

We are THREE MONTHS from release! Three months! Stay tuned to my Facebook page for more updates and MAYBE some teasers.     I’m really excited about this book because it advances a character whose story I have always loved.  I hope you all love m favorite Shadow’s development too.   I can’t wait to hear your feedback! I wonder if other authors get as psyched as I do when a plan comes together.  Kudos to anyone who knows what 80’s classic show I’m referencing.

Five weeks from vacation! I cannot wait!  I need to be out and unwind.  See some old friends, enjoy GenCon and play some games. If any of you are at GenCon 50,  by all means,  drop me a message.   🙂  I’m excited to relax and game and just be with my husband for four days.  It will be fantastic.  What’s your favorite thing to do on vacation?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Updates!

Current reading:  Prophecy – Cassandra Morgan

Inspired by:  “Come From Away”  – Original Broadway Cast

Hello people!

So I have a major announcement.  Shadow’s Journey will be released October 15,  2017.  Please join me from 2-5 to celebrate at Gathering Volumes!  I will be raffling off a copy of the new book.  Can’t wait to see you there! Summer is here. What do you guys do in the summer?  I admit, I read.  I have never been the outdoorsy type. I like my books and my little corner of the world.   I do like walks when it’s cool and sunny.    The photo below is from one of my favorite parks in our area.  I love walking down by the river.  There is always -something- to see.

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In other news,  revisions are going well.  I should finish right on schedule.  This will be what I’m going back to as soon as I finish this blog post.   9 more files to goooo.  Then onto layout.   I have also written a little more of The Guardian’s Fall so those of you that have missed the continuation of that story will get to see more in the July edition of the Maeseloria Monthly.     So, with that being said, back to work for me.  Stay tuned to Facebook for information about the new book release.   Hope all is well in your corners of the world! Take care.

 

Poking  My Head Out of the Sand

Current Reading:   Prophecy – Cassandra Morgan

Inspired by:  My playlist,  keep reading.

So I was inspired by a dear friend who posted on her blog about twenty songs that make her move. Check out her website here.   I commented on her blog with my twenty songs that make me move and promised her that I would write up a little list of songs I write to.  I am adding a twist to this.   I’m giving you guys the list and a challenge.  Tell me which characters you’d associate these songs with.    I will tell you if they match what I utilize certain songs for.   Game on guys!  Keep reading,  there’s a few book updates coming after the list. Feel free to steal for your own lists.  I’ve linked a YouTube video to each song.

Top 20 writing songs

  1. Beyond the Veil – Lindsey Stirling
  2. Shatter Me – Lindsey Stirling
  3. Sounds of Silence – Disturbed
  4. Only One – Lifehouse
  5. Beyond – William Joseph
  6. Into Darkness – BrunuhVille
  7. Eternal – Evanescence
  8. The Ghost of You – My Chemical Romance
  9. I Will Not Bow – Breaking Benjamin
  10. Voodoo – Godsmack
  11. The Chain – Fleetwood Mac
  12. The Reckoning – Halestorm
  13. Throne – Bring Me the Horizon
  14. Writing’s On The Wall – Sam Smith
  15. Via Purifico – Nobuo Uematsu
  16. Words as Weapons – Seether
  17. Here – Alessia Cara
  18. Master of Tides – Lindsey Stirling
  19. Best I’ll Ever Be (Acoustic Version) – Sister Hazel
  20. Moonlight Sonata – Ludwig van Beethoven

So, happy guessing.   Comment with your thoughts below. I’m excited to see what you guys think. Also,  what songs make you move?  Thanks to Mia for the idea.

In other news, I have completed round one of revisions for Shadow’s Journey.  Round two is underway.    I am already flirting with ideas for the next book. (THANK YOU – You know who you are)   School is out so finding time between parenting and work has been a challenge.  We are shooting for an October  release date.   I say we because I might write them,  I might publish them but my family and friends keep me level during the process.  Thanks guys.  ❤ Stay tuned for teasers.

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