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Glad you stopped by. I hope you'll stop by again for Monday Morning Musings, Meet the Author Thursday, Friday Favorites, Weekend Writing Warriors, and guests whenever they drop in.

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

#IWSG: To NaNo Or Not to NaNo

 


Happy Insecure Writer's Support Group Day. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. We are rockin' the neurotic writing world!

Lucky me, I'm joining the awesome co-hosts for the November 2 posting of the IWSG: Diedre Knight, Douglas Thomas Greening, Nick Wilford,.

November 2's optional question - November is National Novel Writing Month. Have you ever participated? If not, why not?

I say this every November: I admire everyone who does NaNo. It's a fantastic way to write a book. I've never participated. Too much going on in November--birthdays, anniversaries, and Thanksgiving. Plus finish Christmas shopping. 

Another reason--probably the most important one--is that I can't go forward until I fix what I've written. I write, go back and fix/rewrite, write more, go back and fix/rewrite, rinse and repeat. It's how I write. So, knowing myself, I figure I'd defeat the purpose of NaNo. But those of you who want to go for it, do it. A lot of people swear by it.

As I said above, I'm one of the co-hosts this month. It will take me a while to get to those on my list but I will, eventually. I've got the GI bug that's going around plus my husband is in the hospital (again). My kids are wonderful picking up the slack and watching out for their dad.

Hope you have a good writing month.

Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.


Wednesday, October 5, 2022

#IWSG: Favorite Genre


Happy Insecure Writer's Support Group Day. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain 
Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. We are rockin' the neurotic writing world!

The awesome co-hosts for the October 5 posting of the IWSG are Tonja Drecker, Victoria Marie Lees, Mary Aalgaard, and Sandra Cox!

This month's question: What do you consider the best characteristics of your favorite genre?

My favorite genre is science fiction romance. When I say that to those who don't know me well, I get strange looks. Science fiction? I answer "yes!" with all the enthusiasm of a true fanatic. Romance is a bonus. Even better, the two have one big thing in common--hope. Hope for the future. With science fiction, the possibilities are endless. Traveling to the moon? Been there, done that. And beyond? Why not? Habitats on planets in our solar system? Sure. Finding Goldilocks planets (where everything is just right for humans) can't be far behind. Building our own worlds, creating our own rules? What's not to like about that?

So many things we thought were fiction back in the 1950s and 1960s are here, now. Many people who work for NASA say it was science fiction (esp. movies like Star Wars and a television shows like Star Trek) that made them see possibilities and gave them the desire to try to accomplish them. 

As I mentioned, adding romance to science fiction is a lagniappe--something extra, an unexpected benefit. Many readers enjoy relationship stories. Watching two people fall in love and create a family gives proof that humanity will continue. That we have a future. 

Whether that future is here on Earth or on a planet far, far away, it doesn't matter. What does matter is that life will continue. We have a future.


Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Guest: Deniz Bevan DRUID'S MOON #NewRelease

 I'm happy to participate in celebrating Deniz Bevan's new release, Druid's Moon. Deniz is a fellow member of the Insecure Writers Support Group. Take it away, Deniz



Druid’s Moon
By Deniz Bevan

Beauty to his Beast…

Lyne Vanlith, an archaeologist who seeks a logical explanation to any mystery, discovers an ancient Druidic curse on her first dig. When the signs foretold by the curse descend on her, Lyne can’t find a reasonable interpretation.

And that’s even before a Beast rescues her from a monstrous sea-creature. She drops a grateful kiss on the snout of the Beast, who transforms into a man, Frederick Cunnick, Baron of Lansladron. Lyne is meant to be Beauty to his Beast—and break the curse forever.

Now both spellkeeper and monster are targeting Lyne. She must take up her legendary role, to defeat the curse and save Frederick—and herself. Instead of logic, for the first time, Lyne must trust her heart.


Release date – September 20, 2022
$14.95, 6x9 trade paperback, 226 pages
Fantasy – Romance (FIC009090) / Paranormal (FIC009050) / Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology (FIC010000)
Print ISBN 9781939844866 / EBook ISBN 9781939844873
$4.99 EBook available in all formats



About the Author

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Guest: Nick Wilford RECKONING #NewRelease #YA

Today, I'm happy to help Nick Wilford celebrate the release of his newest book, Reckoning. I read the first two books in this series, so I've been anxiously waiting for this story. Here's Nick to tell you about Reckoning.


Today I’m going to talk a bit about genre-bending, genre-mashing, or whatever else you want to call it. When done well, it brings two genres together in a way that creates something new. Reckoning revolves in large part around the trial of the Reformers’ government, who are accused of conspiring to keep the country of Loretania in a state of disease and deprivation, so that their own nation, Harmonia, could remain spotless. It was really fun to blend the atmosphere and intrigue of a courtroom drama with the dystopian, sci-fi setting.

Of course I used the traditional elements of a trial – the jury, the prosecution, the defence – but after that I was free to invent a lot of things. After all, this is set in a future society where not only was there an existing order with its own very stringent rules, but that order has now been torn down by my young protagonists who are trying to impose a fairer way of doing things. They can make up their own procedures, but at the same time they want to make sure they do things properly – there hasn’t actually been a trial in this world for centuries because under the Reformers, there was no crime (being a so-called “perfect” society). So Ez, my MC Welles’s partner and co-leader of the new government, being a bookworm, spends a lot of time researching old-Earth legal texts. That’s interesting because there’s a real blend of old and new. For example, there’s a jury but no judge, because no one is qualified for such a role.

Of course, things don’t quite go as smoothly as planned for Welles and Ez – the Reformers aren’t quite done yet with their underhand tricks. That’s what creates the tension in the story, but you’ll need to read the book to find out more about that!

 

 


Title: Reckoning

Author: Nick Wilford

Genre: YA dystopian
Series: Black & White
Series #: 3 of 3

Release date: 20th September 2022

Publisher: Superstar Peanut Publishing

 

Blurb:

 The time has come for those who perpetrated wrongdoing and suffering on the land of Loretania to face their judgement. Lord Histender and the other members of the deposed Reformers’ Government are in jail awaiting trial for keeping that country in a state of disease-ridden deprivation, alongside other heinous crimes.

Wellesbury Noon and Ezmerelda Dontible, the kind and benevolent new rulers of Harmonia, are looking forward to seeing justice finally being done. But nothing is that simple. Lunkin, the psychotic former Chief Scientist, has one more trick up his sleeve and is wreaking havoc even from behind bars. Soon, Loretanians who have come to make a new life in Harmonia are falling victim to hate crimes and brutal attacks. And things take a turn for the desperate when Wellesbury himself becomes compromised.

Can Welles and Ez turn the tide of public opinion and secure justice for the people of Loretania before it’s too late?

 

Purchase Links:

 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Smashwords / Barnes & Noble / Kobo 

 Add it on Goodreads

 


Author bio:

Nick Wilford is a writer and stay-at-home dad. Once a journalist, he now makes use of those early morning times when the house is quiet to explore the realms of fiction, with a little freelance editing and formatting thrown in. When not working he can usually be found spending time with his family or wrangling his six adorable dogs. His first traditionally published novel, a YA sci-fi adventure entitled The Becalmer, will release from Creative James Media in August 2023. His other books include the Black & White trilogy, a YA dystopian series, and A Change of Mind and Other Stories, a collection featuring a novella and five short stories, four of which were previously published in Writer’s Muse magazine. Nick is also the editor of Overcoming Adversity: An Anthology for Andrew.

Linktree

 

 

 


Wednesday, September 7, 2022

#IWSG: & Book Tour - First Love: The Art of Making Doughnuts

Happy Insecure Writer's Support Group Day. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. We are rockin' the neurotic writing world!

The awesome co-hosts for the September 7 posting of the IWSG are Kim Lajevardi, Cathrina Constantine, Natalie Aguirre, Olga Godim, Michelle Wallace, and Louise - Fundy Blue

Instead of the optional question this month, I'm happy to present First Love: The Art of Making Doughnuts. This anthology is the result of the Insecure Writers Support Group's contest. You're getting the best of the best. I love the title! Even better, the authors are here to tell you why they wrote their book in this terrific anthology. 


I wrote my story, Marmalade Sunset, after a glorious 2-hour visit to the town of Oia on the drop-dead gorgeous jewel of a Greek Island, Santorini. Oia is set high in the hills and has a huge caldera and caves hidden in the cliffs. During the German occupation, many Greeks hid in the caves and often starved. So, much of my story relates my version of historical events juxtaposed with my real-life experience. – Denise Covey

 

People often ask why I write. The simplest answer is because "I have to". More specifically, I'm an avid reader of all genres. I love reading about relationships, interactions, and adventures. By extension I must write about them as well. Stories help us figure out who we are and offers a chance to connect in a unique way. In her writing-life memoir Bird by Bird, Anne Lamont says: "[Our writing matters] because of the spirit, I say. Because of the heart. Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul." That's why I write. – Sylvia Ney

 

This short story was inspired by my first ride share experience. While it wasn't romantic, it was memorable (with a whole secret father and inheritance discussion going on). Beyond the original inspiration, I wrote this story as a way to express the desire to present a perfect life, even with those closest to you, and to therefore miss out on true relationship. If we're not vulnerable with those we love, we're missing out on the most important part. – Sammi Spizziri

 
In "The Art of Making Doughnuts," the main character is working on a
puzzle depicting Renoir's Luncheon of the Boating Party. Originally, I
threw that in as a sentimental nod to my all-time favorite painting,
but, as so often happens in writing, I was delighted to find that the
puzzle/painting grew to became a key piece of the story as the plot
developed. I hope readers enjoy reading about it as much as I enjoyed
writing it! – Linda Budzinski

 

My kids were in an 80’s rock phase when I wrote “Clyde and Coalesce.” Eye of the Tiger was their favorite, so we listened to it on repeat. My story is as much inspired by music as it is inspired by Pride and Prejudice. – Kim Elliott

 

I typically write full-length novels, and I don’t write insta-love romance. To squeeze an entire, believable romance into a short story, I had to choose a mail-order bride plot with MCs already wed by proxy. It was a challenge, to say the least. – Melissa Maygrove

 

I like this question… What surprised me the most: writing this story in a genre different from my previous works. Pushing ourselves as writers can lead to many surprising and wonderful outcomes. For me, this story is my first publication, and has given me insight to challenge myself further by finding other venues to publish my work. – Michael Di Gesu

 

I based my story on a writing prompt (handsome neighbor comes to girl’s rescue when her ex shows up at her house), and it surprised me when Harrison pulled out his acting/improv skills to disarm the ex. That moment took me all the way to “the end” and even gave me my title. I love when my characters surprise me. – Katie Klein

*  *  *


First Love: The Art of Making Doughnuts
An Insecure Writer’s Support Group Anthology

The sweetness of first love…

Could a fiercely independent cop’s heart be stolen by the guy who makes her favorite doughnuts? Will a maid who used deceit to snare a mail-order husband get a dose of her own medicine? Can her handsome neighbor rescue a modern-day “princess” from a tenacious ex-boyfriend? Can two strangers in a rideshare be honest enough to fall in love for real? Can you remember your first love? How about your second? Third? Fourth?

Featuring the talents of Linda Budzinski, Melissa Maygrove, Michael Di Gesu, Sylvia Ney, Katie Klein, Kim Elliott, Templeton Moss, S.E. White, Denise Covey, and Sammi Spizziri. Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these ten tales will touch your heart and rekindle lost feelings. Prepare to return to that first love…

Release date: September 6, 2022
Print ISBN – 9781939844880, $14.95
eBook ISBN – 9781939844897, $4.99
Romance - Clean & Wholesome (FIC027270) / Contemporary (FIC027020) / Historical (FIC027050)
186 pages, Freedom Fox Press, an imprint of Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.

Founded by author Alex J. Cavanaugh and a Writer’s Digest Top Sites for Writers, the Insecure Writer’s Support Group offers support for writers and authors alike. It provides an online database; articles; monthly blog posting; Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram groups; #IWSGPit, and a newsletter.
https://www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com/

Links:
Amazon 
https://www.amazon.com/First-Love-Art-Making-Doughnuts-ebook/dp/B09QH3Z28P/
Barnes & Noble 
https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/first-love-insecure-writers-support-group/1140884369?ean=2940165751301
iTunes https://books.apple.com/us/book/x/id1605240999
Kobo 
https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/first-love-the-art-of-making-doughnuts
Scribed - 
https://www.scribd.com/search?query=9781939844897&language=0
Goodreads 
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60198262-first-love



Congratulations to all the authors. I'm excited to read this anthology. I hope you are, too.

Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.


Saturday, August 27, 2022

#WeWriWa ~ The Case of the Wedding Wrecker: A Shark, White Teeth and All

 


Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors, where writers share snippets from their work-in-progress or new release. Apologies for missing last week. My computer died (or so I thought) last Saturday, and since I'm a confirmed procrastinator, I couldn't put up my post. Turns out I'd plugged in the wrong charger cord. No wonder my batter didn't charge. Glad it was only that instead of needing a new computer. Anyway, on to my post for this week.

I'm sharing snippets from the 4th Alex O'Hara cozy mystery, The Case of the Wedding Wrecker. This snippet picks up where we left off last time. (BTW, thanks for all your comments, esp. those about Alex running her mouth.) The police chief, Dan Hoesen, is interviewing Alex. The lawyer, Hans Bogardus, is with her. The last line was: What happened after you got dressed for the rehearsal."


Snippet:  

“Nick and I went to the church. After the rehearsal, we had dinner at the Golden Fleece.” The chef at the popular restaurant was a friend of Nick’s.

“And then?” Dan prodded.

“Maria, Nick’s mother, hustled me out to a limo, where my best friends were waiting.”

“Who?”

“Dottie, Ellen—”

Dan tore off a sheet of paper from his pad and shoved it across the table to me along with a pen. “Write down their names—first and last. And where you went.”

 

And a little more:

I did as instructed, before pushing the paper back to him.

Dan glanced at it. “Did Nick go with you?”

I shook my head. “Our party was Girls Only.” I grinned thinking about Nick coming along. Until it hit me. Nick was in jail. I sobered quickly.

“What time did you leave the restaurant?”

“Seven? Or a little after. Maria would know. Do you want me to get her?” I started to rise, but Hans drew me down with a hand on my wrist.

“I will talk to her later,” Dan said. “What did Nick do?”

“I assume he went to his bachelor party.”

Hans tapped the table next to my arm. “Only speak to the things you know. Don’t assume or guess.”

The chief glared at him. “When did you return to your apartment?”

“Eleven forty-five.”

“You know that exactly?”

I grimaced. “Yes. Maria made a point of telling me to tell Nick to drive her home because the limo and driver were done at midnight.”

“Nick was in the apartment when you returned?”

“Yes. We talked for—”

Hans tapped my forearm. “Remember what I said. Only answer the questions. Don’t volunteer any more information than what the chief asks.”

Dan pursed his lips. “Is that really necessary, Counselor? She isn’t accused. I’m just trying to find out where Palzetti was.”

Hans didn’t say anything, just stared at Dan. That look. OMG, I’m glad it wasn’t directed at me. His dad might be elegance personified. Hans looked like a shark, white teeth and all.

 

Be sure to check out the other WeWriWa authors. Stay safe and have a great week.



 

Saturday, August 13, 2022

#WeWriWa ~ The Case of the Wedding Wrecker: Don't Volunteer Any Info

 


Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors, where writers share snippets from their work-in-progress or new release.

I'm sharing snippets from the 4th Alex O'Hara cozy mystery, The Case of the Wedding Wrecker. This snippet picks up where we left off last time. The police chief, Dan Hoesen, is interviewing Alex. The lawyer, Hans Bogardus, is with her.


Snippet:  

The chief cleared his throat. “I apologize for my former deputy’s insensitivity. We will restart the interview.” He nodded behind me, waited a second or three, then repeated my name and date.

Former deputy? I wasn’t touching that. I wanted to get this interview over with.

“State your name and relationship with the accused.”

“Alexandra O’Hara, uh, Palzetti—” Holy shit. I’d never called myself that before. “—wife of Nicholas Palzetti.”

“Tell me what you did yesterday.”

 

And a little more

“Everything? After the rehearsal and dinner, my girlfriends had a bachelorette party that started—”

“Only when and where you saw Nicholas Palzetti,” the chief said.

Oh, good. He didn’t need to know how foolish we all were.

“In the morning, we went sailing, had a picnic, and came back to my apartment about four-thirty.”

“Only answer the question,” Hans said. “Don’t volunteer any more information than what the chief asks.”

Chief Hoesen glared at him before making a note on his legal pad. “So, you both went back to your apartment. Then what did you do?”

“I got ready for the rehearsal.”

“And Nick?”

“After I finished my shower, he took one.”

Dan rolled his eyes. “I don’t need every detail. What happened after you got dressed for the rehearsal?”

 

Be sure to check out the other WeWriWa authors. Stay safe and have a great week.