New Year’s Resolutions and Other News

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Well, we can talk about the elephant in the room. I clearly suck at blogging. I mean suck. I disappear for months at a time, and I don’t call or write. I have no real excuse except that life continually gets in the way. The end of the year was especially busy for me as I was planning events for work and getting ready to go to Hawaii. And yes, no sympathy there as I did get to spend the holidays in paradise. Hawaii was pretty awesome. Is is the land of lush vegetation and rainbows. And rain. There’s a lot of rain. I spent two days in Honolulu and eight days in Maui. I made the mistake of staying in the jungle in Maui, which sounded way cool on paper, but remember the rain? Boy, was there a lot of it! Once we got out of the jungle, we would drive into sunshine and perfect beaches. (The we in this scenario is my husband). I swam with sea turtles, and I’m very certain tiger sharks as turtles are their favorite food.

Now on to more important things like New Year’s resolutions. This year, no matter what, I will finish the sequel to “The Other Inheritance.” It is literally the only resolution I have because, let’s face it, it’s a doozy. From fighting writing’s block and fatigue, it’s been a real struggle to get this book done. I honestly think it will be a better book than the first, with some twists and some surprises, but I just need to get that story on the page!

What are your resolutions?

Writing progress, good books, and traveling over the holidays

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As always, I’ve been woefully neglectful to my beautiful blog. I have no excuses but the typical ones; work, family, and more work. But I finally got my lazy ass motivated and decided to post today. I still can’t believe it’s December! Christmas is literally around the corner, and it’s a steady 60 degrees in New York. The weather is not conducive to the holiday spirit; although, I admit my holiday spirit is never super high. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I’m all about the food!

I leave for Hawaii next week, and I’ll spend 10 days with my husband in Maui. It’s my first Christmas not with the family in over 10 years, so I feel a little sad about missing my parents, but it’s Hawaii! I’ll be soaking up sun for 10 days and hanging out on the beach. I can’t be too sad about that.

I just finished “Magic Stars” by Ilona Andrews, a sweet novella that is a great addition to the Kate Daniels world. This is not just a fluff piece that needs to be skipped over, but a piece that is integral to the greater plot. You must read this one! I’m also a third of the way into “Sweep In Peace,” another Ilona Andrews book. It’s so great to have that many offerings from a favorite writer!

Speaking of writers you need to check out, you must try Michelle Bryan’s “Newblood” series. This is great dystopian YA fiction that is action packed and features a feisty, believable heroine.

And now for what you’ve all been waiting for, an update on the sequel to “The Other Inheritance.” Good news; I’m about 115 pages in and I think I know where the story is going. I just reached the climatic middle, which will propel the book to it’s, hopefully, awesome conclusion. Bad news; I’m still having bouts of writer’s block that really suck. I think Hawaii will help me overcome that with a change of scenery and new adventures.

Happy Holidays everyone!

Traveling and Being Away!

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Lyons at Night

Lyons Fountain

Hi All,

Once again I can be rightly accused of absence and sporadic posts. I do have an excuse, sort of. I have been traveling again. I spent 10 days in France with a few hours squeeze in to Geneva. The first leg of my trip was in Chamonix, and I was right next to the famous Mont Blanc.The view was stunning; it looked like I was on the set of a movie with a fake backdrop, that’s how pretty it was. I got to hike to a glacier and go inside it! Other than a pretty bad case of altitude sickness, it was a fun five days.

After Chamonix, I went to the beautiful city of Lyons, which is the food capital of France. I ate a lot and visited amazing churches and museums and just had an awesome time. Now it’s back to work on my second book! I’ll try not to be gone so long next time.

Mount Blanc 1

Glacier 1

Writing, Great Books and Other Things!

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Hi all,

Once again, it’s been a long time, but I’ve been busy in the best possible ways. My publisher put the the fear of God in me, so to speak, with a looming deadline that I’m trying my best to meet. I’m happy to say that the yet unnamed sequel to “The Other Inheritance” is coming along slowly but surely. I’m currently at 17K words and 71 pages. I couldn’t be more thrilled! I’ve realized I’m using a lot more traditional fantasy elements in the sequel, so I have to make sure I add those cool steampunk touches that were so great in the first one.

Other than that scary deadline, fabulous reading has been inspiring me as well. I just finished “Magic Shifts” by Ilona Andrews. What an apt title, as the writing duo of Ilona Andrews set us up for the final arc of the series. Did I say final arc? No!!!! These books are so good I never want them to end. I ship Kate and Curran so hard! This was a great book. Great new mythology to explore, a scary villain, and an interesting reveal about what Kate’s father is really after. Good stuff! This writing duo always pushes me to excel at my craft.

I received an ARC copy of Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas. She kicks off my YA Lit series at 92Y, and I’m super stoked to have her as a guest. I’m a huge fan of the series, and she’s another writer that always inspires me to be my best.

I’m going to be traveling to France in September. I hope I get some ideas to inspire my writing and world building. Until next, y’all!

Cover Reveal for P.A.W.S.!

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My dear friend and colleague Debbie Manber Kupfer is rereleasing her wonderful YA fantasy P.A.W.S.! Just look at that beautiful new cover!

Despite all the stories I shared with you,
there is so much I never told you, Miri,
so much you’ll have to
discover for yourself.
Be brave, mein Katzerl.

When Miri receives a silver cat charm from her omama, Celia, on the night before she dies, she has no idea that the charm holds a family secret, a magic that saved Celia’s life and is about to make Miri’s a whole lot more interesting.
Book on sale on Amazon, September 1 ….

Goodreads Giveaway!

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Hi all!

I’m having a Goodreads giveaway. I’m giving away two signed books of “The Other Inheritance!” If you click on this link, you can enter to win a copy.

I officially have 35 reviews of “The Other Inheritance,” on Amazon and 17 reviews on Goodreads. To really be noticed, I need 50 reviews. Again, I beg of you, if you’ve read “The Other Inheritance” and loved it–or just liked it–please leave a review. Reviews are the best tools a writer can use.

Shifting gears slightly, my YA Lit program at 92nd Street Y kicks off on August 25 with Libba Bray and the launch of Lair of Dreams. Chuck Wendig is also joining the event, and I’m super stoked about this one. If you’re in NYC that week, please stop by!

Back from Vacation!

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Hi all! I’ve been super absent lately, but that’s because I’ve spent the last two weeks in Greece and Turkey having an awesome time. I didn’t read or write, which is incredibly unusual for me, but I really needed that R&R.

Greece was absolutely wonderful. I know people are concerned because of the economic crisis, but don’t be. If you’ve made plans or intend to make plans to go to Greece, keep them. The people really need tourism and they are so hospitable and lovely. You won’t have any problems getting money or getting around.

After spending 10 days in Greece, I spent my last two days in Istanbul. If you’ve never visited Istanbul, it’s a very special city with a lot of flavor. It really is the crossroads of East and West, and you can feel the history everywhere you go.

Now that I’m back, I have to concentrate on the writing the sequel to “The Other Inheritance!” I’ve officially wrote 50 pages, and I’ve outlined the next three chapters, so there is progress. It’s slow progress, but definitely progress!

I’m kicking off my YA Lit season at 92Y with Libba Bray on August 25. If you’re in NYC, stop by and see this awesome author!

Hagia Sophia

Final Day of the Tour Guest–KJ Hawkins!

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KJ Hawkins

Today is the last day of the Magic of Solstice Fantasy Writers’ Blog Tour! I’ve saved the best for last and would like to welcome KJ Hawkins to my blog today.

Tell us about yourself. Where you’re from, etc.?
Hello everyone! It is a pleasure to be here. Tell you a bit about myself? Hmmm…well first off KJ Hawkins is my pen name. I was originally going to write under my true name, but decided I wanted to separate myself from my writing. I am also a graphic designer and want to keep my business self away from my creative self, if that makes any sense.

Besides being an avid reader and fantasy lover I am a normal 24 year old woman. I have two cats, and two dogs that preoccupy my time. They are my babies so I spend a lot of my time taking care of them. I could probably drone on and on about boring things about myself. However I think the most interesting thing about me is my writing and the worlds I have and will create. If you want to get to know me more you will have to pick up one of my stories/books and join me on the ride to discovery.

What is your most recent project?
This last April my short story Trisha’s Escape was published in DKC’s anthology The Magical Muse: A Collection of Fantasy Stories. This short story is an introductory piece to my first novel in my Half-Blood Academy Series. There is going to be a total of nine short stories that will be gathered officially into an anthology in the near feature. As for the book series I have yet to figure out how many novels will make up the series, however The Seeker’s Core is going to be the first in the series. I hope to publish it in 2016.

Tell us a little bit about it.
Trisha Solveig lives in Nazi Germany and finds herself on the road to a concentration camp. She thinks facing imprisonment is going to be hard wait till she faces off against Sergeant Smith.

When demons from the pit rule the camp and a demigod is thrown into the mist. She will have to find a way out and hopefully be able to handle the truth of her heritage in the process.

Did you choose writing or did writing choose you?
I would have to say that my heart chose writing.

Welcome fantasy author Cheri Schmidt!

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Cheri Schmidt

Today, I’d like to welcome fellow fantasy writer Cheri Schmidt! Let’s learn a little more about Cheri.

Cheri is the bestselling author of Fateful. Think “The Vampire Diaries meets Jane Austen.” Fateful is followed by Fractured, Forever, and The Order of Curse-Bound Knights. And she has one other book in another series out entitled, Fair Maiden.

Her Fateful Series has been a bestseller ever since she published it, and well over a 150 thousand copies have been downloaded worldwide.

Cheri will say that her head is a very crowded place, and she wishes she could write faster. She will also tell you that if you do not like glittering fairies, hot vampires with British accents, knights in shining armor, the dashing Mr. Darcy, girly-girls who wear skirts, modern-day vigilantes, or large amounts of snogging, then perhaps her stories are not for you.

Currently she is working on The Trapping Club, a sequel to Fair Maiden, a contemporary/spy romance series, and a Steampunk series.

Cheri’s Books:
01Fateful-cheri- 2500

The Order of Curse-Bound Knights (book 4 in the Fateful Series)
A dying knight, the infamous Sir Maximilian…
A curse saves him. That curse makes him even more dangerous…and he likes it. To him, a new life as a vampire is an appealing thing.
The man who turned him into this great, fearsome warrior tasks him to watch over and protect his mortal daughter, Nadia. But the beautiful Nadia puts Max’s skills as a knight to the test, captures his heart, and bewitches him with eyes of emerald green. A power more potent than any magical curse.
Inspired by ballads of Robin Hood, Nadia is a bit too rebellious for her own good. And with a kind heart, she is much too trusting and forgiving for Max’s peace of mind, because those attributes get her into a great deal of peril. Deadly creatures surround her—some of them are there to protect her and some want to lure her into a trap—and she has no idea…
But can a knight in shining armor heal a lady’s heart when her love for the legend of Robin Hood is used against her?

Kindle Link:

Fateful, book one in the Fateful Series, is available for Free download and Whispersynced. This means you can pick up Fateful for free for Kindle and then get the audiobook for only $1.99!!!
For Danielle Darcey, when the sun sets in London the magic begins, but just as that magic begins, Danielle’s fairytale romance ends…because the hero of her story is a vampire.

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