Thursday, January 31, 2013

Kelly Whitley, Into the Red, #giveaway #ebook

AUTHOR: Kelly Whitley
BOOK TITLE: Into the Red
PUBLISHER: Muse It Up Publishing
BUY LINK: Into the Red
GIVEAWAY: E-copy of Into the Red to a random commenter.


Tell me a little about your book. Into the Red is the story of Evan Nichols, a physician and reluctant vampire. He falls for Tara West, a human. When deranged vampires known as Poisoners attack, Evan must race against time to save her.

What gave you the idea for this particular story? I’m a vampire lover from way back—like the old black and white vampire movies, and Dark Shadows (the soap opera!). Working in the medical field, it seemed that vampirism could be a genetic trait, an evolutionary adaptation that outlived its usefulness but was still around. The idea emerged from that.

Are you a full-time writer or part-time, and how do you organize your writing time? Part-time, wishing to be full-time. I carve writing time out of the rest of my life—while waiting at the doctor’s office, at night after everyone else is asleep, in the early morning. On days off.

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer? I wrote as a kid, then it went by the wayside. I did a lot of technical writing in my job. After being a hardcore suspense/mystery/thriller reader for ages, I started reading romance a few years ago. It wasn’t the “bodice-rippers” of the past, and I decided I wanted to write romance.

What do you hope readers will take from your writing? The thought that maybe the person next to you might be a vampire, or carry the vampire gene.

Which genres do you write, which do you prefer, and why? I love paranormals. I also write contemporary stories and noir flash fiction. Flash lets me breathe, and also reinforces choosing words carefully.

What is the toughest part about being a writer and how do you get past it? Time. I’m a slow writer; 1000 words takes me two to three hours, and I agonize over word choices and sentence structure. Family doesn’t understand the need to write, and I’ve had to adapt my writing schedule so it doesn’t cut into social/family time.

Is there anything in your story based upon a real life event? If so, tell me about it. The main thing is the medical scenarios in the book. They’re all collages made from my experiences in the medical field.

How much is your protagonist like you? How different? Like me, Evan works in the medical field, and he’s a dedicated professional, determined to save people (and vampires). He draws, and he has a sense of humor. On the other hand, he’s a vampire, and much more aggressive than I am.

What kind of research did you do for this type of story? The biggest thing was the computer stuff—otherwise, I tried to stick with “write what you know.”

Do writing violent or highly sexual scenes bother you? Why or why not? For better or worse, I enjoyed writing the fight scenes and the murder scenes. It’s exhilarating to live vicariously. The sex scenes took more work (and workshops) to do well.

What about your book makes it special? The characters. One reader said, “I love Evan.” Another said, “I hope I have the vampire gene.” It’s wonderful when readers get into it like that!

What is your marketing plan? Exposure. The more people I can get to check out the book, the better.

Where can people learn more about you and your work?

Any tips for new writers hoping to write in the genre of your book? Come up with a unique premise. Make sure you understand your plot and theme. Come up with a logline and tape it above your computer. I ran my ideas by the wonderful Bob Mayer (of Writer Warrior fame and multi-pubbed author) to make sure it was a take on vampires that was fresh, and that I knew the world I’d created well enough to make it plausible.

What’s in the future for you? I have stories in a couple of anthologies out now, and another vampire novel in the works. I also have a contemporary romance in the works, and of course flash fiction.

Human blood is an illicit and highly addictive drug--if you're a vampire. Known as Red, its side effects are insanity, and eventual death. A group of Red-addicted vampires known as Poisoners are killing women as part of an extortion plot involving a lost ancient vampiric tome, and they’re leaving a trail of bodies in their wake. The discovery of each new victim risks exposure of the entire vampire race to humans. Then one victim survives…

Dr. Evan Nichols, oncologist and vampire, lives a monk-like existence, by his own choice, focusing on patient care and research to benefit his vampire brethren. It’s been twenty-five years since his world turned upside down—the night he lost his fiancee and discovered his hidden vampire heritage. Now his government has ordered him to take a mate—or they’ll choose one for him. It’s a horrible prospect, and one that might push him over the edge—until Fate throws him together with a human female.

Wary of relationships, Tara West has poured her energies into work and inventing cutting edge climbing equipment. She doesn’t like the gorgeous Dr. Nichols, yet finds herself unaccountably drawn to him.

When a crazed vampire attacks and poisons Tara, Evan rescues her. With time running out, he has to create an antidote to the poison before he loses his chance at love.

In order to make the vaccine which might cure her, he has to find the bastards who poisoned her and take their venom—before they die of their addiction. If he doesn’t reach them in time, saving her will be impossible.

Thus the journey begins—into the Red!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

John Rykken, Bloodwood

AUTHOR: John Rykken
BOOK TITLE: Bloodwood
PUBLISHER: iUniverse

Why don't you start with telling us a little about yourself? What genre do you write in and why?

I write character-driven, young adult thrillers. I write in that genre because it allows me to be less serious than I'd be if writing books for adults. Also, my goal has always been to write fun, adventurous stories. For some reason the young adult genre seems conducive to telling these kinds of tales.

Tell me about your current book which you are promoting.

I'm currently promoting Bloodwood. It's book two in a series called the Chronicles of Max Mayhem. In Bloodwood, Max and his best friend, Lydia, travel to a cold, remote part of Canada in search of a missing girl and hidden vampire town.

How long have you been writing?
Eight years.
What got you interested in writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
I've been a lifelong fan of stories, whether they're told in a book, on screen at the theater, or in person around the campfire. That aside, however, I think I first wanted to write a book because I thought I'd make a lot of money. That hasn't happened, obviously. And I've since learned that writing a book because you think you're going to get rich is pretty naive. These days I write because I love my characters and the crazy adventures they have. I actually want to find out what's going to happen to them. Also, I write for my readers. 
Do you outline before you write? If not, what’s your initial process?

I usually start with a premise—e.g. a couple guys have pocket watches that let them travel through time, one guy is going to do something bad in the past, the other guy has to stop him—and then, from there, I write a loose outline that changes as I write the book.

What comes first: the plot or the characters?
Character. Premise. Plot.
Which of your characters do you love/hate/fear/pity the most and why?

I try to love them all, especially the villains. If you hate one of your characters, it comes through in your writing and your reader begins hating the character, too. And I don't think it's ever good to inspire negative emotions in your readers. (Unless, of course, you are JK Rowling and are writing a character like Dolores Umbridge. But even there, Umbridge is a character you kind of love to hate.) Anyhow, the point is, when you consider all the villains who've captivated you in the past, there's usually some aspect of their wickedness or humanity that you like a little bit or can at least relate to. It's rare to unequivocally dislike a character, though I admit it does happen. 

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Coming up with the plot and then reigning in the plot so it's not too dumb and unbelievable. Also, I have a difficult time writing the opening chapters of my books. It's because in those chapters I am laying the groundwork for the plot and what will happen later on. If I don't lay those stones correctly, the house I build will be crooked and not hang together too well. 
Did your book require a lot of research? 

Research? A marginal amount. Mostly I look up the names of roads and things like that. I also make sure that things like my characters' travel times from point A to B are realistic, and try to authentically describe cities, neighborhoods, and so on.

How long does it take to write a book for you?

How long does it take me to write a book? I've written four books. The first three took six months apiece. The third, Bloodwood, took a year and a half. I'm currently writing my fifth book, The Oddclock. It's far and away my most ambitious project. So far I've been working on it for two years. It's excellent and I love it, but it's only halfway finished.

What are some of the challenges in your writing process?

Grinding through the days of frustration and, like I said, having the discipline to write and rewrite the opening chapters until the groundwork and plot threads have all been laid correctly.

Describe your writing space.
Coffee shops. Tea shops. My room, which has a desk, lamps, incense; bookshelves crammed with dictionaries, writing manuals, all of my favorite novels.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Run. Meditate. Play guitar. Eat al pastor tacos. Hang out with my family and wonderful group of Portland friends. Dream about meeting that one woman who will make all else fall away...
What books or authors have influenced your writing?

Ernest Hemingway. Anne LaMott. Justin Cronin. JK Rowling. Graham Greene.

Where can people learn more about you and your work?

Synopsis of Bloodwood:

When skateboarding, fifteen-year-old Max Mayhem learns that his neighbor, Peter, is a vampire whose girlfriend has gone missing, Max’s dreams for a normal life are turned upside down. Before he knows it, he and his best friend, Lydia, are sucked into a daring hunt for Peter’s missing girlfriend—a hunt that leads them to a suspiciously empty town in northern Canada, where Max guesses things are not what they seem. As the sun sets over the ice-blue mountains and the town falls into shadow, cries echo through the woods and Max realizes it’s too late. Now the missing girl is the last thing on his and Lydia’s minds, and it will take all their cunning to survive until sunrise.


There was a long, pregnant pause while Ward, panting, missing his suit jacket with his hair dripping wet, darted his eyes from Max's face to the manila envelope to under the desk and back to Max's face. 
And he was on Max, wrapping surprisingly strong, wiry arms around Max's middle and trying to wrestle him to the ground. Max squirmed, his back to Ward, and threw an elbow out.
It connected.
The arms released. Ward crashed backward into the desk and sent up an explosion of paper; the computer monitor flew into the curtains and smacked against the window.
Max turned.
Ward sat sprawled on the desk. Blood gushed from his nose. He put a hand to his face and stared in shock when he came away with slick red fingers.
"Oh, gosh, I'm so sorry, man! I didn't mean to—" said Max.
Ward's face went ugly. He lunged.
Max ducked under the outstretched hand and shouldered Ward in the chest; he flew backward. Max exited the office and slammed the door. All was chaos in the lobby: sprinkler water illuminated by flashing lights, like rain lit up by police flashers at night; Ruben's bulk blocking the hall, his back to Max while he barked into a phone; guests moving quickly toward the front door; smoke smell; shouts.
The office door shuddered.
Max wedged himself between the file cabinets and in a burst of strength slid one in front of the door. Then he turned, envelope in hand, and shouldered through the emergency exit. 
He glanced back, through the diminishing door-gap he saw Ward fighting the file cabinet. 
Still looking behind him, Max took a long runner's stride and—
It felt like he'd crashed headlong into a cement statue. Max staggered backward, tripped, and hit the ground, hard.
He looked up to find himself staring at a very tall man in a black leather motorcycle jacket. The man was brown-haired, his face sharp with Scandinavian angles, and his skin had a nearly translucent, ash-white pallor. He held a motorcycle helmet at his side.
The man cocked his head, bird-like, a predatory movement. As Max watched the man's irises grew large, flooding the whites of his eyes like a flowering ink-stain until they were black.
Crap, crap, crap, thought Max. He snatched up the folder and stood up, backing away. The vampire said nothing.
Police sirens wailed and bright red and blue lights flashed off the buildings a block away. Max crossed to the other side of the street, keeping his eyes on the vampire, who did nothing except watch him. When Max was twenty yards away, he turned and ran, just as a fire truck and two police cruisers pulled up outside the Queens Hotel.
Max did not bother looking behind him. He sprinted down Water Street and then it hit him: his dad.
The van, his dad had said, make it to the van.
Max spurred himself faster, recalling the map: up Water Street, left on Abbot, right down Trounce Alley, left on Cambie. The pavement seemed to fly beneath him. He was breathless as he ran onto Cambie.
And there up ahead—thank goodness—with the lights on and pulled halfway into the street, was the old white Volkswagen.
Dr. Mayhem threw the passenger door open as Max ran up.
Max jumped in, slammed the door shut, and the VW roared down the street. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Kathleen West-Townsend, The Hurri-Kaine Series

First, I want to thank Penny for this wonderful opportunity to share –
The Hurri-Kaine Series, - A Decadent Tale of Obsession, Betrayal, and Revenge.

1. Why don't you start with telling us a little about yourself?  What genre your write and why?
I am trained in Cultural Anthropology, and hold a Master's degree, that said, my first love has always been music, and I mean rock 'n' roll.  My love goes back to saving my pennies to buy the 45rmp records that cost 25¢.  I lived in Hollywood, California, and during the sixties; every musician in the world came here.  At 15, I interviewed the Beatles at LAX, and then backstage at the Hollywood Bowl, for ABC News as a cub reported.  For the next ten years, I met, hung out with, or dated various members of the English Invasion and other LA locals and visitors.

One boyfriend that exposed me to the fast lane of rock 'n' roll was Bill Wyman, from the Rolling Stones.  From his book Stone Alone: The Story of a Rock 'n' Roll Band – Bill Wyman, 1997, is this excerpt.  "Brian's behavior was bizarre that night and Kathy (West) Townsend, a girlfriend of mine at the time," ect...

I continued to be surrounded by musicians because I became a professional dancer in Hollywood clubs, and for concerts, like in arenas behind the Who.  Later, I worked at the world famous club the Whiskey A-Go-Go, and another club in Beverly Hill called The Daisy Club that catered to popular actors.  And then there was Record Plant West Recording Studio, where the Who's Who of the music industry recorded.  A few years later, I squeezed in some legal experience at the Walt Disney Company Headquarters, in their Entertainment Law department.  So, these are the sources I draw from for the Hurri-Kaine Series.

It is tough for me to categorize my fictional writing.  I love Film Noir movies of the 40s, like Mildred Pierce, Laura, and Rebecca.  I love gothic castles with the mystery and weather flashing all about it.  I love Hitchcock and how an ordinary person becomes involved in extraordinary circumstances.  At first glance I would say the genre is Glitz and Glam Romance – a romantic fairy tale with all the trimmings, but that category of writing went out with Jackie Collins.  However, as the story evolves the fairy tale fractures and becomes darker, more suspenseful, and ends as a romantic thriller.  So I guess it would be fair to say I just want to entertain.

2. Tell me about your current book(s) which you are promoting.
I am promoting The Hurri-Kaine Series, Heart of the Hurri-Kaine (Book One Volumes 1 & 2), Blood of the Hurri-Kaine (Book Two, Volumes 1 & 2), with a focus on Eye of the Hurri-Kaine (Book Three, Volume One) released December 30, 2012.

4. What got you interested in writing and what inspired you to write your first book?
Until the age of five, my grandmother would read Grimm's fairy tales to me, and then later I began writing fiction stories in school.  When the Beatle became famous, I wrote my first romance with the Beatles as the protagonist, and myself, and my girlfriend's as their love interest.

Twenty or so years later, it happened accidently.  Stories of my adventures in Hollywood would occasional pop-up in conversations, and I would hear, "Why don't you write about that time?"  And eventually I did in a memoir (yet to be published).  So I guess, it could be said, I inspired myself, because three years after the memoir, I novelized my experiences and Heart of the Hurri-Kaine was born.

5. Do you outline before you write?  If not, what's your initial process?
I can't write from an outline, for me that would be too academic.  I'm one of those creative writers that needs to follow the characters.  I let them go and I do my best to keep up with them.  I once had a character show up in a scene and it was five pages before I knew who she was.

6. What comes first: the plot or the characters?
Oh, the characters are what drive my stories and they tell me the plot.

7. Which of your characters do you love/hate/fear/pity the most and why?
I characteristically fall in love with all my principle male characters, Kaine, Luka, and Nicky.  If I don't fall in love with them, how can my readers?  I always admire and identify with all the females like Solange and Emily, and sometimes I wish I was Holly.

I can't hate or pity any of them because my novels are long, so I have enough time to develop them with a full backstory.  So, I understand each characters motive and why they are pushed to do what moves the story forward.

I could never hate or fear any of my characters.  Even my antagonist I understand, but that doesn't mean he/she doesn't deserve what happens to them.

8. What was the hardest part of writing your book(s)?
Knowing where to stop - I write cliffhangers and it is extremely important to leave the reader wanting to know ‘what happened?’.

12.  What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Laughs...I'm always writing.  But these days it is traveling.  My Cultural Anthropology degree makes it interesting to go about the world investigating other cultures and the Archaeology minor enhances my travels to sacred sites, ruins and museums.  My last adventure was to Japan, and am already wondering where to go next.

As the playwright, Eugene Ionesco said ..."A writer never has a vacation.  For a writer life consist of either writing or thinking about writing."

I loaded up with my computer, sharp pencils, and notepads, ready for ideas while on the plane, ship, tour bus, or around the pool.

13. What books or authors have influenced your writing?
I cut my teeth on Jacqueline Susann, Sidney Sheldon, and Jackie Collins -- Glitz and Glam novels.  I just loved entertainment rags to riches stories.

14.  What do you see for the future of publishing eBooks?
I believe eBooks are the future.  I see a bright future for anyone that has a story to tell, his or her own way.

15. What are your current books out right now and what are the books coming up for release?
Current books are Heart of the Hurri-Kaine (Book One Volumes 1&2),
Blood of the Hurri-Kaine (Book Two Volumes 1&2) and as of Dec. 30, 2012 Eye of the Hurri-Kaine (Book Three Volume One) anywhere eBooks are sold
Forthcoming is Eye of the Hurri-Kaine (Book Three: Volume 2) and new to The Hurri-Kaine Series lineup is a novella, HIDDEN, the backstory on Nicky Jamison, lead guitar player for Hurri-Kaine.

17. What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?
Follow what interest you - your passion, and then write your story, the one that lives inside YOU.  Write it your way.  After it's written...  Then edit, edit, edit!!!!!

18. Where can people learn more about you and your work?
All information about me can be found at, About, and Amazon Author.

I want to thank anyone who took the time to come and meet me.  Should you decide to read my Hurri-Kaine Series I would love to hear from you, and please join my blog and contact me for any questions or comments.

Thanks again Penny!!!


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Richard Louden, The Girl with the Haunting Smile

AUTHOR: Richard Louden
BOOK TITLE: The Girl with the Haunting Smile
PUBLISHER: Can Write, Will Write, London

Tell me a little about your book. It's about Greg, a young Scot who for years worships Ellen, his American pen pal, from afar. Even when she vanishes, he never gives up hope and eventually flies to the US to hunt for her. But she doesn't know he has Tourette's Syndrome. If he finds her, will his romantic dream survive?

What gave you the idea for this particular story? In my work as an education director (school superintendent in the US), I met a number of young people with Tourette's and saw how maligned they often are. I wanted to play a part in making their condition better understood and accepted. I also knew that hardly any novels have a guy with Tourette's as their protagonist, so there was a genuine gap in the market.

Are you a full-time writer or part-time, and how do you organize your writing time? Nowadays, I only work part-time as a journalist, so time isn't a problem. I don't have a rigid routine, I write when the fancy takes me.

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer? I've always been fascinated by words, which isn't surprising, as I'm a linguist by profession. I started to write for my school magazine at the age of 13. From my early days at university, I wrote sketches for student revues and short stories for local radio.

What do you hope readers will take from your writing? Above all, I hope it will make them feel good. Though I've written about Tourette's on this occasion, I'm not a didactic author, I simply want to give enjoyment and fun. I can't write without humor, it's ingrained in me. For me, one of the attractions about the subject matter of this novel is that many people with Tourette's have a strong sense of humor which helps to sustain them.

Which genres do you write, which do you prefer, and why? The Girl with the Haunting Smile is best classified as contemporary fiction with a strong flavor of romance. My second novel, Spring Chicken, will be a feel-good story of an over-70 guy who refuses to await the grim reaper and sets out to live life to the utmost. I'm happy in any genre that allows me to write with humor.

What is the toughest part about being a writer and how do you get past it? For me, the toughest part is rite detailed plot lines and character backstories, so I don't do it. I think out an idea and a few key characters, then go with the flow. I know that would make some writers shudder but it has worked for me (so far!).

How much is your protagonist like you? How different? I suppose he is quite like me, especially in his sense of humor and love of writing, but I didn't plan it that way. He is very different from me in being uneasy in social settings (his Tourette's explains this), whereas I'm a gregarious beast.
What kind of research did you do for this type of story? Not much, as I already knew a lot about Tourette's and Wilmington, North Carolina, where a large chunk of the action takes place (my sister lives there).

Do writing violent or highly sexual scenes bother you? Why or why not? It wouldn't bother me but there are no violent scenes in my novel and the only sexual ones are comic and will offend nobody.
What about your book makes it special? It's my first novel and, as I said earlier, it's about a condition that is seldom covered in novels and is widely misunderstood.

What is your marketing plan? I'm active on social media, especially Twitter, Goodreads and World Literary Café. I hope to keep gaining valuable coverage on the blogs of lovely fellow writers like you. I'm currently on the hunt for authoritative reviews and have been promised two by Amazon top reviewers. It's a pretty sketchy plan, I know, but I'm a marketing newbie and I'm still learning.

What’s in the future for you? At the moment I'm coming towards the end of my second novel, Spring Chicken, though the title may change. After that, I think I may move into genre fiction, perhaps a crime or thriller series, as that is what most readers seem to want these days. I'll certainly continue writing, come what may. It's in the blood.


Greg Harris has been besotted since he was eight. As soon as the young Scot saw a photo of Ellen Fromm, a gorgeous ten-year-old from Wilmington, North Carolina, he was hooked by her soft, haunting smile. 

He is devastated when, six years later, his beloved pen pal stops writing and vanishes. For many years he attempts to contact her but in vain. But he never forgets Ellen and clings to the dream that, one day, they will be together. 

At last, at the age of thirty, he finds a letter Ellen once wrote to his late granddad. When she and Greg eventually meet, it says, she reckons she may fancy him in a big way. As this boost revives his mission in life, Greg flies out to Wilmington and hunts high and low for Ellen.
But a huge doubt lurks in his mind. He has Tourette's Syndrome and has never told Ellen about it. Even if he finds her, will his secret ruin his chance of happiness?

Monday, January 21, 2013

Derick Hudson, Dysfunctional Romance

AUTHOR: Derick Hudson
BOOK TITLE: Dysfunctional Romance!

Please tell us about yourself? I’m Irish, forty-something, full of the ‘gift of the gab’ and quite like writing when I’m allowed to by my wife and kids! I'm a deeply passionate and energetic individual and want to rock your world, literally. I also want to make you laugh out loud so much that you get tinnitus!

Tell us your latest news? I have just published my second novel, Unholy Romance, which is a romantic religious parody. Please do not buy if easily offended!

When and why did you begin writing? About six years ago because it gave me a plausible excuse for avoiding having to mind the kids or cut the lawn!

When did you first consider yourself a writer? When I received my first royalty payment from Amazon. I hope one day Amazon will have paid me more than I have given to them over the years!

What inspired you to write your first book? My ego! I think it was drunk at the time!

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? Yes…buy my book so I can give up the day job!

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?  (Has anyone ever realized it?) Some misguided people claim I’m similar to Barry, the main protagonist in Dysfunctional Romance, who happens to be riddled with phobias from A to Z…but I’m way worse than him!

What are your current projects? My new novel, Unholy Romance! is a hilarious (I promise!) story about Jesus Christ’s second coming. His task, if he can manage to stay alive this time, is to conceive a new set of Commandments which are more relevant to the 21st century than those left behind in stone by ‘old lick-arse’ Moses. Above all else, this is a tale of an unlikely and ultimately passionate romance between Jesus Christ and Megan Milligan, a feisty, Irish phone sex operator and devoted atheist, as they struggle to come to terms with an unplanned pregnancy!

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book? I’d probably have published my book under a pseudonym as it is really hard to deal with all the interview requests, glamorous groupies and pampering! (I wish!)

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing? The fact that Microsoft Word's spellcheck does not pick up words that are correctly spelt but ultimately in the wrong place at the wrong time…if you ‘no’ what I mean!

Do you ever have problems with writers block?  If so how do you get through it? Neat alcohol can be a great tonic for writers block. Just don’t hit the ‘send’ button until sober!

What do you do when you’re not writing/editing or thinking about writing/editing? Stressing out about life!

What was the hardest part of writing your book? Trying to find a cheap “off the shelf” book cover to match my book’s storyline!

Do you have any advice for other writers? You need to self-promote aggressively. I don’t mean you have to beat up your agent…just twitter and blog vigorously to let the masses know little you and your book exists.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers? Buy my next book. It’s even better than the last but not as good as the next!

Any special appearances or events coming up that you want to mention? I haven’t seen my mum in ages so I’m quite liking forwarding to appearing in her house soon.

Who is your publisher and how did you connect with them? I self-published through Amazon after seeing the odd rejection letter or two from THE ESTABLISHMENT! Anyway, I find it more liberating to be independent and would hate to work to deadlines (not sour grapes…I promise!).

How can we find you? Website, Facebook, Twitter, blog, etc. - please share your public links.
I’m lucky in that I have over 30,000 crazy (but really lovely) followers on Twitter and over 15,000 viewings on my blog. Twitter Link:  Blog Link:

Barry Shaw’s whirlwind journey through life was shaped by the growing demands of a multitude of disorders, which meant he tended to clean things repeatedly and aggressively, before they had the chance to murder him!

Barry thrived on routine. If it hadn’t happened before, it was unlikely to happen ever…until he collided into her that is. On that fateful day, as he walked to work, stepping from the center of one pavement stone to the next, he crashed into Sandra Wiggins, who had also been discreetly avoiding the dreaded cracks. It was lust at first would have to wait. Apart, they were just weird, but together, they were pure mental!

This is the bittersweet, hilarious story of two human lovebirds destined to spend their calamitous lives together…until something extraordinary occurs that threatens to decimate what remains of their limited sanity. Welcome to the New World Order created when Barry met his Miss. Match!

Friday, January 18, 2013

A. M. Hargrove, Dark Waltz, plus #giveaway

AUTHOR: A.M. Hargrove
BOOK TITLE: Dark Waltz, a Preastani Novel
PUBLISHER: A.M. Hargrove

GIVEAWAY?: Ecopy of Dark Waltz and the Guardian of Vesturon Series. Be sure to leave contact information if interested in being in the drawing.

Please tell us about yourself?
I am a self published Indie Author that started on this venture a couple of years ago. After working in for big pharma for over twenty years, my job was eliminated due to a corporate buy-out. I decided that instead of staying in the corporate world, I would make a complete career change and here I am!

Tell us your latest news?
I just released Dark Waltz, a Praestani Novel, the first in my adult series. It’s a spin off of my YA/NA series, the Guardians of Vesturon. In my 3rd installment of the Guardians series, Determinant, I introduced a character that basically stole the show and demanded a book of his own. He was too old and much too irreverent to be written as a YA/NA character so that’s how Dark Waltz was created.

When and why did you begin writing?
I laugh when I think of it all and then I pinch myself. As I stated above, I didn’t want to go back to work for corporate America. There’s just too much instability in this economy and I didn’t want to face that. So I thought--what the heck. That’s really the when and the why but the truth is I always wanted to write but never had the time. So I suddenly had that resource and I decided to run with it.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?  (Has anyone ever realized it?)
For my first novel, Survival, a lot of the backpacking scenes from the Appalachian Trail were taken from my own personal experience up there. All my friends knew it and some of them laughed because I used to bug them to death about going up there with me. Not too many friends of mine are into that sort of thing. After I released Survival and they read it, they all said they were glad they never went up there with me! (There’s a scene in the book with a serial killer that takes place on the Trail!)

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Absolutely! Lila Felix, Misty Provencher, Michelle Leighton, Janelle Stalder, John Corwin, Christie Rich, Shelly Crane, and I know I’ve forgotten a ton. I’ve become a huge Indie fan because there are so many talented writers in that group.  And many of them have hit the NYT bestsellers list.

What are your current projects?
I’m currently writing my first adult contemporary romance and I still don’t have a title-GRRR! It’s nearly ready for the editor and nothing is sticking. I’m also writing book 4 of my Guardians series, reEmergent and Death Waltz, the sequel to Dark Waltz.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Not a single thing!

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I used to make up stories as a kid. I wouldn’t write them I would tell them, but they would get so convoluted, no one would pay attention after a while! A teacher told me I should write them down. I never did but should have. Then when I was in high school, an English teacher always praised my creative writing skills. When I went off to college I started out in Accounting. What was I thinking? That didn’t last long. I ended up in Marketing with a minor in journalism. I was only one class short of a double major in journalism. I found that I loved to write. My career took me in an entirely different direction, but it always stayed in the back of my mind.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Ending the story. I hate to end a book. I could go on and on.

Do you ever have problems with writers block?  If so how do you get through it?
Oh sure. When that happens, I put on my ipod and go for a run. I come back with all kinds of ideas. Writer’s block doesn’t last long for me.

Do you have any advice for other writers?
Read as much as you can and write as much as you can. Join Goodreads and get involved in writing groups. There are critique groups out there with people who are willing to help make you become a better writer. Then, as the Nike slogan says...just do it!

Who is your publisher and how did you connect with them?
I am self published

How can we find you? Website, Facebook, Twitter, blog, etc. - please share your public links.

Category: ADULT Romance…NOT appropriate for young readers. (High STEAM contents inside)

Dark Waltz--A sizzling legend of loss, lust and love.

It’s the year 2030 and the human population has been annihilated by a virulent form of small pox.  Liasare Davidson is desperately searching for her brother, who has been missing for three months.  It’s been eighteen years since she was evacuated from Earth and she is horrified to see it’s become a cesspool of unimaginable things.

In her quest to find her brother, she meets Jurek, a powerful and enigmatic being that frightens her, yet she is unable to resist.  When things begin to unfold between them, they both discover a paralyzing truth that puts Liasare at grave risk.  She must make a choice to join Jurek and find her brother or fulfill a role she believes she is ill equipped to undertake.  

Now, please enjoy an excerpt from A.M. Hargrove’s latest book, Dark Waltz, a Praestani Novel.

“Going somewhere?” that husky voice asked.

Crapitty crap!

She sucked in her breath and dropped her weapon, as his voice startled her. Before her brain could comprehend what was happening, she felt her body swirling through a vortex. She finally came to rest in another place.

Disoriented and dizzy, she tried to focus on her surroundings, but everything seemed to tilt sideways.  She reached out her hand to stop herself from falling, but only succeeded in grabbing a fistful of air.  Not knowing which way was up or down, she tried, unsuccessfully, to break her fall. Instead, she felt her breath leave her body in a whoosh as she slammed into the ground. 

Fighting for oxygen, her diaphragm wouldn’t cooperate with her brain’s commands.  Worse yet, she felt a pair of hands latch onto her waist, drag her to her feet and ram her back into a wall.  Her head hung down as she fought to draw in precious oxygen, yet found she was still unable to do so.  Then the asshole had the nerve to jam his arm straight into her diaphragm and start demanding things of her.

“Who do you work for?”

Her mouth opened and closed repeatedly, like a poor fish that had been hauled out of the water, desperate to be thrown back in.

“I’ll ask again, who do you work for?” he bit out each word with precision.

Things began to turn grey and hazy as the lack of air finally took its toll on her brain.  She knew she was going to pass out.

Double crapitty crap!

Her head lolled to the side and...blink, lights out.

Jurek looked at her and cursed, “What the f**k?”

He hadn’t realized she was so close to losing it.  He laid her out on the floor and looked at her for a moment.  She wasn’t beautiful in that traditional, cookie-cutter sense, but there was something about her that enticed him.  Her chestnut mane for one, and Jurek had always been a sucker for women with beautiful hair, but those hazel eyes of hers were something else.  Her full lips were kissably soft, he thought, as he ran his thumb along her mouth.  He finally placed his hand on her forehead and in seconds, she came to, moaning. 

Her eyes fluttered open and when the recognition in them flickered, those hazel eyes shot sparks of gold.  Hovering before her was the dark haired man from the bar.  She wouldn’t have had to open her eyes to know it was him since every cell in her body was on fire with his power. 

End of preview
You can find A.M. Hargrove and more information about Dark Waltz and her other books at her website