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Cover Reveal for The Winter Garden: Book Two of the Ingenious Mechanical Devices

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Well, my second novel finally has a cover! I am beyond excited to present the cover for The Winter Garden: Book Two of the Ingenious Mechanical Devices. The illustrious Javier Ruiz has created a lovely cover for the second time in the style of a paper theatre.  The book is slated to be out in early 2015, but it already has a Goodreads page found here.  The synopsis is as follows: Continue reading

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Free eBook!

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I just thought I would let everyone know that The Earl of Brass will be free on Thursday, September 18th and Friday, September 19th!  The book has rather good ratings on Goodreads and Amazon.  The blurb is as follows:

When Eilian Sorrell, a promising archaeologist and the eldest son of the Earl of Dorset, loses his arm in a dirigible crash, he fears he will face a bleak future among London’s aristocracy. On a quest for normalcy, Lord Sorrell commissions a prosthetic arm but finds the craftsman is not what he seems.
After the death of her brother, Hadley Fenice takes over his prosthesis business but knows it will be an uphill battle as women are discouraged from doing man’s work. In return for building Lord Sorrell an automaton arm, he offers her a chance at freedom by following him to the Negev Desert under the guise of a man.
But what lies beneath the desert is more precious than potshards or bones. As they venture deeper, they discover a society where the path of life is not governed by gain but by passion. When imperialistic invaders come in search of a new colony to pillage, Eilian and Hadley are forced to defend their fleeting glimpse of paradise.

Please check it out and tell your friends!

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The Importance of Being an Earnest Reviewer

five stars

Ah, book reviews.  The all too important yet dreaded rituals all authors dread.  Will they love it?  Will they hate it?  Will the reviewer absolute eviscerate me for seemingly no reason?

The thought of reviews for any author can be daunting, but to an indie author, reviews are one of the most important aspects of marketing our writing.  Currently, I am an unknown, a bit of krill in a ocean of whales and sharks.  Reviews are what often convince readers to take a chance on a newbie author, especially if they are more in depth than “OMG! IT WAS THE BEST BOOK EVER!”  Yes, I can convince my mom and ten of my friends to write puffy five star reviews, but does that do anything for me and what does that say about me as a writer? Continue reading

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The Winter Garden: Book Two of the Ingenious Mechanical Devices

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The Winter Garden: Book Two of the Ingenious Mechanical Devices is only chapters away from completion (apart from editing), so I decided it was time to post the blurb and hopefully build up some hype.  Here is it:

Emmeline Jardine and Immanuel Winter are only months away from achieving their dreams, she will enter debutant society and he will receive a degree from Oxford, but a day at the Thames transforms their lives forever, intertwining their souls and putting them into the path of a predator.

Ripped from the comfort of the world they know, Emmeline and Immanuel are thrust into a struggle for their survival. Even though they escape, Immanuel is forever altered by his time in captivity. Gradually he begins to settle into a normal life as the coroner’s assistant until he comes face to face with the man who nearly destroyed him.

Unaware of what he is capable of, Emmeline is infatuated with the dashing madman and follows him deeper into a world of corrupt mediums. When a murderer masquerading as a monster begins to hunt beautiful Spiritualists, Immanuel knows the key to stopping him lies within the girl who shares his soul.

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The Long-Term Goals of a Young Writer

Today I am heading back to graduate school to begin another semester studying creative writing.  Every time I start school anew, I feel my anxiety level rise tremendously as I worry my professors will not like me or my work, and the best way I have found for me to combat this is to look at the larger picture.  This year I achieved one of my major life goals, to publish a novel, and for this year and the beginning of next year, I would like to publish the second book in the Ingenious Mechanical Devices series, The Winter Garden.  I’m 73,000 words into it, so I hope to be done in a month or two since my writing slows down exponentially once the semester starts.  Editing hopefully won’t take too long, so it is supposed to be out some time in March or so. Along with finishing book two, I plan on getting book three underway or working on my master’s thesis project (which is a novel also but not in the Ingenious Mechanical Devices series though it is still laced with fantasy). Maybe even both. I haven’t tried to tackle juggling two projects at once in a while, but hopefully, I’ll manage. Continue reading

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The Writing Process

One of the members of my Facebook author page asked if I would do a post about my writing process.  After I saw it, I sat back and scratched my head.  What was my writing process?  Like many things, when you live with it, it isn’t nearly as obvious as it is to others.

 

As with all writing, it begins with an idea.  Sometimes it comes as a smattering of dialogue or description while other times it comes as a topic or idea.  For The Earl of Brass, it began with the idea of a man needing automaton parts in order to survive, but this rapidly evolved into a man with a missing arm who needs a prosthesis.  In the beginning, I typically free write and put down anything that comes to mind.  Sometimes it becomes the first chapter of a novel while other times it gets completely rewritten or discarded.  Once an idea beginnings to take form, I make an idea map or an outline of what events will happen in the coming paragraphs.  For flexibility’s sake, I usually only plan five or so chapters ahead at any given time.  Typically, my characters are wayward and do what they want, so I need to alter my plans to fit them.  Forcing an agenda on my characters never goes well.  Sometimes when I have ideas but am not sure what order they should be in, I make index cards and lay them out.  I will move them around and ask my best friend/beta reader and see what she thinks to ensure it’s logical to others. Continue reading

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The Earl of Brass is IndieReader Approved!

IR Approved Sticker 2I awoke today to the most glorious news: The Earl of Brass was given a 4.5 star rating from The IndieReader, which means it has been given the distinction of being IndieReader Approved!  You can check out the review here.

 

Since 8:30 this morning, I have been doing my happy dance and texting, messaging, and bugging anyone who would listen that my novel made the list of approved books.  For an indie author, this is quite a big deal.  The IndieReader is one of the larger, more prestigious book reviewers for Indie and self-published books, and their reviews allow readers to find the gems in indie fiction as well as give indie authors the credit they deserve.  For a self-published author, marketing and getting your book recognition is an uphill battle.  Often reviews like Kirkus, are rather pricy for the average indie writer, but the IndieReader offers a moderate price with a thorough, balanced review.  Being IndieReader Approved is nothing to sneeze at.  Plenty of books they review do not reach the 4 to 5 star level, and the reviewers aren’t afraid to say the book is in need or editing or is lacking in certain areas. 

 

The Earl of Brass is my first literary child, and I definitely feel like a proud parent today.  Here is a sniplet of the review that made me particularly happy and I think captured the spirit of the novel:

The novel proceeds in a satisfying series of complications as Lord Sorrell and Ms. Fenice work together as archaeologists. The plot takes some unexpected turns and, while not overburdened with action, the events are well-paced and follow logical choices of the characters. The depictions of everyone, from London socialite to field laborer, showed distinct personalities which made THE EARL OF BRASS a humorous and delightful book to read.

Thank you, Claire L. Deming for reviewing my book (no, I do not know any of the reviewers, but her name is listed at the bottom).  I am honored and ecstatic that my debut novel is now on the IndieReader Approved list. 

 

Once again, the rest of the review can be found here.

The Earl of Brass can be purchased here:

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