First Quest is published!

I cannot express how exciting it is to look at my book shelf and see my own print next to some of my favorites.  The book is now available for purchase in digital or print format!  While I know that I likely should be adding a wall of text to accompany this post, I am working on marketing and other forms of getting the word out.

Thank you to everyone who has helped me grow my reader base, supported me in my times of uncertainty and discourage, and posted an uplifting comment to this stranger-in-distress in her times of need. I appreciate all of the words of encouragement I’ve received from friends and strangers alike, and am excited now to have my dream a reality. The second book is on its way to being ready, as well, and I cannot wait!

My book on a shelf

 

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“First Quest” Releases May 17th! Finally!

2.2Pre-orders are finally available for First Quest, the first book of a 3-book series called The Mentalists.  The book is a full-length novel available from Kindle Direct Publishing as an e-book. I intend to have this available for print by the time the book releases on May 17th,
2017, as well. Click here to pre-order now, or read the rest of this article for a short synopsis.

First Quest follows Daveth Dwight, a stable-boy whose dreams of becoming a White Knight are realized in a string of events that most others consider coincidental. Daveth knows a dark truth about his timely fortune, but convinces himself that the ends justify the means.  Once joining the Knights, the young man is faced with the realization that he’s barely suited for Knighthood.  Desperate to prove himself to the heroes of his youth, Daveth takes on a mission to rescue a princess from the grips of a thieving dragon. Princess-kidnappings are commonplace in the land of Alffa, and a staple to any aspiring-Knight’s claim to fame.

The whole trip goes south quickly as Daveth faces constant reminders that happily-ever-after is a fairy tale, and he finds himself faced against powers that have lain dormant for centuries. More troublesome than that, though, is the young man’s stature and physique being unsuited for the task that he had taken on. Struggling with his pride and perceived inadequacies, Daveth faces each challenge head-on despite the odds being against him in every fashion.

As the trip progresses, it becomes clear to the hero that there is more to his mission than your run-of-the-mill princess-kidnapping. With help from a few friends he makes along the way, Daveth must overcome trials of wit, strength, and meddle to save the princess and return her home safely…if he can.

First Quest is a full-length novel that is appropriate for all ages, with one extremely subtle sexual reference, and a handful of curse words (hell, damn, shit). While targeted toward adult-readers, this book also fits in the Young Adult category due to its easy-reading format.

Feel free to ask any questions you have in the comments here, or click here to pre-order now!

“Last Resort” is Free! May 11-15

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I am putting up another promotion for the poetry book that I put out quite a while ago. This promotion will be over Mother’s Day weekend, just before the launch of my Fantasy novel “First Quest”.

The promotion goes from May 11th-15th, 2017 on Amazon’s marketplace.

You can get to the book itself by following this link.

If you miss out on the promotion, don’t worry!  The price of the book is effectively going down to $0.99 USD starting TODAY.

 

Lost Myself for a While

I lost myself for a while in a mess of normalcy and expectations.

There’s this constant struggle between following your dreams and sticking with the tried and proven methods that work.  I’ve been living in the latter for too long, again, true to my patterns of ebbing and flowing between passions and necessities.

No more.

No more, she says, as if that were a solid statement meant to finalize this ever-changing mess.

No more, for now.

Queries to Agents and Publishing companies alike have resulted in nothing but automated responses (at best), and my obsessing over how much they really mean it when they tell you not to submit more than once.  That being said, I have decided that the Mentalist series will be self-published, and it will be launching within the week.  If I fail, I fail, but I have never been the type that can sit around waiting for someone’s approval in order to further my own goals.

Hasty and foolish of me, perhaps, but if ever there were a time when this might be wise, it is now.  I am presently a body containing nothing but free time, and it’s time that I move toward building my own bridges instead of petitioning someone to build them for me.

Once the Mentalists: First Quest is out there, I have a handful of smaller projects that I will be working on to really see where my forte is.  There are a few genres I’ve been interested in dabbling in to see if I would be any good at them, and it will be a nice distraction from this major project I’ve been absorbed in (as well as the plethora of other things I need distracting from).

I will keep this blog updated on progress and teasers for those other projects, as well as any new information on the second book of the Mentalist series (which I have outlined in full already and am just waiting for the inspiration to return).

Thank you to all of the people who have been reading this blog, even when I haven’t been updating it.  I look forward to bringing new content, once again. 🙂

10 Things I Learned From My Rats

Sometimes it takes the love of something smaller than you, to understand just how big you are

Rats are incredible pets and teachers. Those of us who are blessed to spend time with these balls of fur have learned some important lessons from them, and I hope to one day have life as figured out as they seem to.

10. There is no such thing as being to curiuos

Rats will investigate anything they can get their paws on. If they can reach it or smell it, they are going to do everything within their power to understand it. As humans, we only investigate things that we believe will benefit us. However, we would be much better served to investigate everything and figure out how we can make it benefit us afterwords; like a rat.

9. Instant gratification is not always the best gratification 

When a rat gets curious about something, it is relentless. When that curiosity rewards them, you can’t mistake the self-satisfied look on their…

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Feels Like Nothing

It feels like nothing,
nothing at all.
Like a void in my spirit,
a black hole in my wall.
When my defenses come down,
that nothing remains
to save me from feeling
as it swallows the pain.
I put pen to paper,
and nothing comes through.
Blank pages with lines
and nothing to prove.
Over and over
I erase the mistakes,
leaving nothing to show
of the words that I take.
Every word feels like nothing,
a lie from my soul.
Nothing important.
Nothing finished or whole.
Like something is missing
in every line,
because every thought
feels like nothing inside.
These reactions are fake;
every word is preplanned.
Nothing is real
that I write with this hand.

Shameless Self-Promotion

Between the Boulder City project and shameless self-promotion, this weekend was a nice respite from all of the ideas and syllables I toss around regularly.  But, Monday (hush, today is my Monday) arrives and it’s back to the taka-taka-taka of my keyboard.

Admittedly, I know very little about how some of these social-networking platforms function.  While I’m familiar enough with Facebook (and had an ancient MySpace back in the day), that is about the extent of my network.  Twitter always baffled me, Tumblr seemed more for fun than anything, and I don’t even know what other platforms people are using these days.  Something about short video clips?  -throws her hands up in exasperation-

I spent a few hours researching twitter the other day to attempt (yet again) to get an idea for how it all worked.  Never has something made me feel so old as reading how the hashtag has transformed since I used to utilize it in old IRCs.  That, coupled with the understanding that I had to actually Google something that people these days seem to use without a second thought, reminded me of my mother: “Oh!  I get it!  This is how you let someone know you’re talking to them!”

I must say, I am glad that I took the time to understand it all.  Twitter, especially, has such a fantastic and supportive network for writers of all kinds.  I have found more support in the strangers and fellow writers there than I have through some of my own friends.  After working in competitive sales markets for so much of my life, it is incredibly refreshing to see the camaraderie in this peer network, and I hope I’m doing my part to be as supportive as some of my own followers have been.

The quest for peer review on my novel isn’t going as well as planned.  I am still waiting for feedback from the friends and family who have already received a copy, each having their own (however, valid) excuses for why they haven’t gotten to it, yet.  I’ve considered branching out to a less exclusive list, but for now am content to wait for as long as I can stand it.  I still need to work on the cover design, anyway, so it’s fair to wait at least a little while longer before I do something desperate.  In the meantime, I am finishing sorting through the last details for the second book of this series, and becoming acutely aware that (once the first is published) there will very soon be no going back to make room for changes.  It’s both exciting and terrifying.

As for the children’s books, those will be (strangely enough) a more long-term project.  Finding an illustrator that is both within my budget (which is not very large) and has an appealing style has proven nigh impossible.  After some research, it became evident that publishing an illustrated book is a very expensive thing to do.  While I could work on the designs myself, my art has some serious consistency issues that I feel would prove to be more frustrating than it would be worth.  However this pans out, the stories themselves will be published.  I just hope that I do not have to settle for art that I dislike, since I know that will hurt the sales and entertainment level.

As I say, the side-projects of my side-projects are my friends.  I have another number of short stories and novel ideas brewing and in the works.  I am very much the type who requires 9001 different projects to work on in order to accomplish anything.  If I give too much attention to one thing, I end up trying to pack those thousands of ideas all into the same project.  Clutter can be charming, but only in my head.  On paper, it needs to look like it all made sense while I was thinking it.

Today’s rambling completed, I think coffee is in order.  Lots and lots of coffee, and a little something to help my attention span.  I hope you are all enjoying whatever bits you’ve been able to read.  Thank you, again, to everyone who has given me even a sliver of support: every like, comment, and share (mostly shares) help.  🙂

How Interesting

((an excerpt from my book, Last Resort))

How interesting, the way that timequeen
has played me like a card.
Set me down in proper place
just to make things hard.
Life removed the Joker,
so I’ll have to play his part.
Here I am, the Queen of Spades,
posing as the Queen of Hearts.

How interesting, the way that time
has robbed me like a crook.
Put the pistol to my head,
just like in the books.
I can’t remember anymore
all of the things it took.
I wouldn’t know what was mine
even if I tried to look.

How interesting, the way that time
puts the pieces all in place
like life is some sort of puzzle,
a picture of my face.
Each crooked piece that finds its way
into another’s space
takes me one step closer
to facing my disgrace.

How interesting, the way that time
gets away from me.
So many things I could have done,
if I had only seen
how much time I’ve wasted.
But now time is wasting me.
I guess it’s time I stopped this rhyme
and got myself some sleep.