Tuesday, June 2, 2015

CURRENT PROJECT UPDATE!



Yesterday kicked off Book In A Month with The Writer's Zone... an on-line writing group I've overseen for at least fifteen years. While members have come and gone, our core has always been the same... WRITE! Whether we write for fifteen minutes a day or participate in an all-day sprint marathon, we dedicate time every month to just getting the story down. Some months are better than others as progress goes an whether or not we FOCUS on the project at hand is the key ingredient.

In January, when I kicked off the first one of 2015 both as a Zone leader and a member of the JANO group (led by Sleuth's Ink writing group from Springfield MO), I had a rocky beginning. But once I dove into Book 1 in the Branson series... and wrote every day... I found the story flowing. As is usual the case when I get into a project, I fell in love with my characters.

How Do You Like Me Now (Book 1) introduced me to Jennifer and Blake. Tragedy separated them at a young age and their story begins with a reuniting and a second chance to find happiness together. While I loved Jennifer and Blake, I was drawn to the secondary characters (which is usually my pitfall). Kim is a widow with two pre-teen girls. Her husband is a casualty of the Afghanistan war. All she's had time for in the year since his death is doing what he would have wanted her to do... carry on. When she meets country music heart-throb Trevor, she begins to take that step... steps toward her own second chance at happiness. 

While I don't have a title for Book 2 yet, I'm sure a song will pop into my head as I write.

I am also going to be working on edits from my first manuscript, A Christmas To Remember. I really want to see this book published - whether Indie or through traditional channels. I've believed in this story from day one and I feel after many close calls, the time has come for this book to shine. The first step is to polish the mechanics a bit more (I've learned a lot since the story's first rounds with editors) and hopefully pitch to an editor or agent during the Ozarks Romance Authors conference in September.

Mix in trying to strip furniture for the new office space, tidy the house in time for family guests next week and I have plenty to keep me busy this week. 

What are you working on?





Wednesday, May 6, 2015

CONFERENCES & EVENTS


"I am not responsible for content posted about any of the conferences and events. I will let you know which ones I have attended or participated in. Please contact the conference site directly for current information."

Okay... commercial out of the way. Now let's talk conferences & workshops. There are a TON out there. You only have to look. Three websites I have always found helpful are SHAW GUIDES, WRITE DEVAS and RESOURCES FOR WRITERS by Jodi Renner. Book mark those links and refer to them next time you're on the hunt for a writer's conference.

This week I'm going to direct you to Bear River Writer's Conference. This conference takes place at the University of Michigan May 28 - June 1, 2015. From my reading, this one reminds me a lot of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Academic quality workshops, notable speakers and great networking opportunities. If funds are tight, don't count yourself out. They also offer scholarships.

Anytime you attend a conference I spotlight, please email me or leave a comment to let me know what you thought. Let us learn from the experiences of others.

Happy Writing!
Angela

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT - Lisa Medley



Blurb: A small group of reapers and supernatural beings in Meridian, Arkansas are all that stands between humanity and the apocalypse when a fallen angel stages a demonic invasion. In their battle to save the world, each will meet his or her match, discovering the power of love…and the importance of risking everything to protect it.

Yeah... today is all about my favorite reaper/ author.. Lisa Medley. I love her covers almost as much as I love the series. If you've not read these, what are you waiting for? In the mean time, let's get to know Lisa.

1) Why do you write? I write primarily about monsters in love. My Reaper Series is dark urban fantasy and Haunt My Heart is paranormal romance. I am currently working on a sci-fi/space opera romance called Space Cowboys & Indians (available Fall 2015) and while there is a monster (alien), alas, it will have no love.

2) What is your ‘Daily Mantra’ for writing? What gets you to your keyboard above other activities? Time to make the words. I like watching that word count accumulate, and I track it on a notebook page by my laptop so it’s very visual. I don’t write every day, but I average around 500-1000 words an hour. A couple of hours in the evening after everyone has gone to bed can still be very productive.


3) What is the best writing advice you ever received? Stop writing in the passive tense. I didn’t even realize I was doing it, but as soon as a seasoned author in my writing group pointed it out, I saw it and corrected it. Live and write in the moment! Make those scenes active not passive.

4) What is your favorite genre to write and why? I like the fantastic and the more monsters the better. I’ve just always been drawn to the things that go bump in the night. I just don’t like human monsters. They are truly scary.


5) What is the one key career you remember from your childhood of wanting to be when you grew up? Oh man! I first wanted to be a marine biologist like Jacque Cousteau. Of course, I live in the Midwest so that was problematic. Also, apparently there is a lot of math in science involved in that career choice. Problem number two. The second option was journalism. That didn’t pan out either. I ended up being an English Teacher for three dog years and now I work as a blood drive consultant for a local blood bank. Yep, I’m a vampire. Go figure.



OR

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Wednesday, April 29, 2015

CONTESTS & CONFERENCES - Arkansas Writers Conference



"I am not responsible for content posted about any of the conferences and events. I will let you know which ones I have attended or participated in. Please contact the conference site directly for current information."

Okay... commercial out of the way. Now let's talk conferences & workshops. There are a TON out there. You only have to look. Three websites I have always found helpful are SHAW GUIDESWRITE DEVAS and RESOURCES FOR WRITERS by Jodi Renner. Book mark those links and refer to them next time you're on the hunt for a writer's conference.

This week I want to take you to Little Rock, Arkansas. Though I've not attended the conference, I have participated in their annual writing contests - and won a few here and there. This conference is put together by great people who know what they are doing. I'm talking about the Arkansas Writer's Conference. One woman you will find in attendance as long as she is able is the lovely Arkansas Poet Laurette, Peggy Vining. Such a sweet lady and wonderful poet. I have known Miss Peggy for over 25 years and she is the one who first told me about the Arkansas Penwomen and this conference.

Though the deadline has passed to enter this year's competition, there is still time to register for the conference which takes place June 5 - 6.

Anytime you attend a conference I spotlight, please email me or leave a comment to let me know what you thought. Let us learn from the experiences of others.

Happy Writing!
Angela

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT - Danielle Gianni Corrick

NOTE: Comments are now closed. I will be posting the winner later today (Wed. 4/29) Thank you for stopping in! ~Angela

Read a vampire's intimate poetic journal, and a mortals powerful detailed diary...both share the same timeless love story, as they live and die and find each other through time. As a battle between temptation and lust...keep the two apart, while true love finds its way.


I do not spend a lot of time on Facebook. I just do not have the time. I try to connect with folks I know and take care of business. Then I am off to continue my work day and write. Through Facebook I've not only keep in touch with folks I know, but I have met new people as well. One of those is Danielle Gianni Corrick. Danielle can light up any room - even a virtual one! I am please to have her as my guest today and share her trilogy with all of you. And Danielle comes bearing gifts! She is giving away a set to one lucky visitor. Don't be shy - say HI! to Danielle....

A bit about our guest:

I'm Danielle Gianni Corrick...from N.J. I've been married for 11 years to my high school sweetheart, and together a total of 21 years. I'm a proud mother of two great kids Jason and Desiree'...9 and 11. I've been a hairstylist for 21 years, and recently a self published author of my first series 'An Erotic Vampire Romance'. I started writing my series after the loss and suicide of my younger brother Piero in 1997, as writing had become my outlet as well as my therapy.


1. Why do you write?
I write because it's an outlet for me, as it's also very therapeutic and relaxing to me...to journey into other worlds, as the world around me stands still. Writing has been an escape for me to venture, and to do so at any given time that I desire. All I have to do is pick up a pen or my keyboard, and I'm off to my own Wonderland.

2. What is your 'daily mantra' for writing? What gets you to your keyboard above other activities?
My daily mantra for writing is gathering up my pillows and blankets at the end of the night, a cup of hot green tea, and have my tarot/angel cards at hand. This is the time I get...where it's my time, and on my time I enjoy to escape to other worlds other than the world I know. The best time to write would be when my awesome kids have settled down in bed, and I venture into a world that I created...with the anticipation that someday others will also have the oppertunity to read what I wrote, and with a message to be told.

3. What is the best writing advice you have ever received?
The best writing advice that I have ever recieved was to write from the heart, and to write what I know...to have fun and play around with words, as I create my own style and technique. Jump out of the box every now and than...only to create a whole other species from what I am used to writing.

4. What is your favorite genre to write and why?
I love to write erotic stories, and children's stories...totally different ends of the spectrum, and for these two reasons alone-I love to grab the minds of our precious little ones, as I create stories for them...stories with moral, meaning, and lesson. I also love to grab the minds of our amazing big ones, as I create stories for them as well...stories with moral, meaning, and lesson.

5. What is the one key career you remember from your childhood of wanting to be when you grew up?
The one key career that I can remember wanting to become as a child is ironically what I do now...a hairstylist, and for 21 years and counting. =) I love my job, as it's not a job at all...it's more of getting paid for having fun, and loving what I do. Which gives me the fortunate opportunity to be a staying at home mom, and a working at home mom.


BLURB:

Discovering his one true love...Dracula finds his halfling, as his mortal find soon becomes vampire. Dracula creates Lana Black in 1865, which she becomes an erotic theatre performer. When the vampire's secret...his sweet surprise of Lana's immortality...leads to death, as life and death arrive for Dracula and Lana Black. With a twist of fate...their two souls travel time, as they find one another once again in 2008. However, they are not a match any longer...Lana Black is now committed to another, as Dracula needs Uncommitted blood to survive. Lana Black and Dracula are both led on an emotional journey, as their true love wins the battle against lust and temptation. A love story, a fantasy...'An Erotic Vampire Romance'.

To purchase The Erotic Romance books:





You may catch up with Danielle on:








Monday, April 27, 2015

CURRENT PROJECT - Branson Series Book 2


I'm going to pretend I haven't been here in what seems forever. Aside from scheduling the spotlight authors, life has been really crazy here. My last real post was back in January when I introduced you to the plans for my brand new studio - Creative Dreams. My husband worked his day job as a river boat Captain most of January so no progress on the studio. On February 13 he had carpal tunnel sugery on his predominate hand (right). For two and a half months he could not do much of anything. I crammed my day job into as few daylight hours as possible then spent my fiction writing time with him. Bottom line, my husband is more important to me than publishing books. I don't want to look back wishing 'if only'. Life is too short. 

The music business exploded for me and I'm struggling to keep up. But in January I did write the first in a trilogy during JANO, sponsored by my local Sleuth's Ink writer's group. I am pleased with the story, though like any first draft the story needs a lot of help. And like any first book in a series, I am anxious to breathe life into the next couple I introduced in Book 1. Kim is a military widow with two adorable little girls and Trevor is an Iraq vet turned country singer. When Trevor takes a spot on a USO tour, Kis is petrified she will become a widow again, before they are even man and wife. I promise there will be at least one kleenex moment in this book. I know, becuase I wrote the scene in book one then realized the impact would be greater in book 2. 

So while I have not been here much, my mind is always whirling with stories I want to share. 

I leave on Saturday for a 18 day trip through Texas. I will be spending the first week of my trip in the Hill Country networking with music artists and doing research for my western historical that kind of stalled out. The second week I will be at the Romantic Times Convention in Dallas. If you are attending, please look me up! I've scheduled to be in the FAN-tastic Party during the second half of the evening and I have SWAG! 

So here's a question begging for your input .... 'What is the best SWAG  you ever received? Tell me. I'll draw one name for a special prize pack.

Make sure to stop by tomorrow when my favorite Vamp author, Danielle Gianni Corrick will be here and she's giving away the complete Diary Trilogy to one lucky fan! Don't miss it. 

Happy Reading!
Angela!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT - Judy Nickles



I have known Judy Nickles for several years. She is a talented author and we have a lot of common interests. Being a grandma is one of our top priorities. 

A little about Judy...
Judy Nickles, also writing as Gwyneth Greer, has been spinning tales since she could hold a #2 pencil. A genealogist for over 30 years, Judy believes that stories are everywhere and wishes she had time to write all of them. She is having her adolescent rebellion 50+ years late and recently took a ride in a vintage B-24 bomber built the year she was born during the war (that’s WW II for all you youngsters out there). She has 5 traditionally-published novels and has recently branched out into indie publishing. She also manages to keep up with four adorable (natch!) grandchildren acquired somewhat belatedly but with great gratitude and joy.

Thank you, Judy, for joining us today!

Here is Judy's responses to my Fast Five Questions:

1     1) Why do you write?  
          Why not? People write for different reasons at different times in their lives. Right now I’m finding     it’s a nice way to make a little extra money in my retirement. But sometimes there’s still a story           inside clamoring to get out even if it doesn’t make a nickel!

2     2) What is your “Daily Mantra” for writing? What gets you to your keyboard above other     
            activities?  
           Sometimes it’s that story slipping the constraints of my mind and slithering down my arms to my       fingers. When I do NaNoWriMo (and that’s not every year), I know I have a minimum number of       words to write daily to meet the goal of 50K in a month. Without a deadline looming, I find Randy     Ingermanson’s advice about The 500 Club as useful as anything.

3     3)   What is the best writing advice you ever received?
             Just write the book/story and fix it later.

4     4) What is your favorite genre to write and why? 
            Cozy mystery with a taste of vintage wine…um, historical details…and maybe a ghost or two             stops the list. I suppose I never outgrew Nancy Drew.

5     5) What is the one key career you remember from your childhood of wanting to be when you           grew up?    
            A lady detective, of course! I even had a handy dandy little detective kit. And I was obsessed with       what might be hiding behind the walls of my grandmother’s house next door. 
  
   Here is a blurb from the Penelope Pembroke Mysteries:
B&B owner Penelope Pembroke has a son who’s a cop, an ex-husband who’s best not mentioned, and a penchant for toeing the line in life. So what’s she doing with a mystery man who comes and goes from Amaryllis, Arkansas, usually leaving murder and mayhem behind? 

You will find this series at Amazon

You can find out more about Judy Nickles 

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