Monthly Archives: April 2017

Constructive criticism… making it work for you.

This past week has been enlightening, and a learning experience for me. I entered my novel, Eternal Embrace, to be a part of an event known as The Reviewers Roundup. It’s an interesting concept, and I look forward to using this platform again for other works. It’s straightforward and simple. Books of all genres are listed. You pick which one you want to read, and it’s sent to you. All you have to do in return is write an honest review. The event is set up for two weeks; the first week for novellas or short stories, and the second week is for novels.

I appreciated the readers who chose Embrace, especially as this was the second book in a series. Not all of them read Phoenix Rising first, and the reviews reflected it. It did, however, give me a lot of insight on how to deal with the remaining three books of my series.

First thing I realized, an introduction to The Kindred was imperative. Coming in cold, readers know nothing of my warriors and their history. I wrote an introduction that will be included in all future books.

Second, as repetitious as it is to me, and to readers who have kept up with the series, there are some details that require an explanation of some kind each time. I use the term, Kith, in my story. Unless you read the first book, you wouldn’t know that this refers to Torie’s personal bodyguards. I’ll try to keep details like this one in mind as I write.

The third item that was brought to my attention was that readers love conflict. Apparently, some were disappointed that Quinn and Torie had no personal struggles in their own relationship. Theirs is a unique bonding, and I have no regrets regarding their story. I couldn’t risk letting the cat out of the bag, but I knew Eternal Embrace was going to more than make up for it regarding conflict.

The most important thing I learned from this wonderful event, was that readers enjoyed my books. While I’ll never write the Great American Novel, I do feel like, for a little while, I provided a pleasurable escape from the mundane. It’s a good feeling.

Till next week,

~Madison

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Caffeine Deprived

It is 6:40 am and as I sit here trying to think of something witty to write for today’s blog post, all I can think of is……COFFEE! It’s an essential part of waking my brain cells up. Yeah…I’ve got nothing, nada, zero, zilch.

I will have some news to share with you next week. So stay tuned.

Until next week…Happy Reading!

~Jolanthe~

TODAY IS THE DAY

You’ve been seeing me post for MONTHS about Prowlers & Growlers….

Now today – it is finally here.

Honest…I was beginning to think the calendar had conspired against us.

It took SO LONG.

But it’s here…

If you haven’t yet, you’re running out of time to grab

TWENTY-ONE BRAND NEW STORIES

for $0.99 before the preorder price goes dark.

Seriously, Do It Now!

Any outlet you like.

Amazon Smart URL: http://hyperurl.co/PnGBs

Staying busy…

So, what have I been doing this past week? Let’s see… I’ve been promoting, marketing, revising, and writing. Did I mention that I’m Super Author by night? LOL Sometimes, that’s how I feel. My ultimate dream scenario is to be a full time author, but unfortunately being a single, working woman sort of prohibits that from happening any time soon. Though retirement is close, it’s still down the road a ways.

Eternal Embrace has been doing well, and I’ve gotten a couple of 5 star reviews already. Thank you so much for that! I’m hoping that will increase next week when Totally Talented Promotions starts the Roundup Review for novels. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity. https://www.facebook.com/events/1376581342401978/ Eternal Embrace will be one of the many books for you to read for free. The only requirement is to leave an honest review. That’s a hard deal to beat.

I finished a couple of projects, and have started book 4 of my Kindred series, Blindsided. What happened to book 3, you ask? *chuckles* It’s in the hands of my Alpha reader, waiting for Beta readers. Yes indeed, A Destiny Denied is finished. Of course, there will be many revisions before it makes it to being published next Spring, but I’m happy with the story, so far.

I’m not sure of the difference when it comes to writing my books. Phoenix Rising was my personal heart story, and it poured onto the paper in a rush. I struggled with Eternal Embrace. I didn’t like the female main character, and battled with her for a long time before we came to an understanding so I could finish the book. A Destiny Denied was a labor of love, and an emotional outlet for me. Blindsided is turning out to be fun, and has more twists and turns that I originally planned on. Deuces Wild, book 5 is going to be another fun one. As much as I want to hurry and write them, I’m going to be devastated when the series is completed. I love my warriors.

On that note, I have writing to do. Till next week,

~Madison Granger

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Snippet, snippet, here’s a snippet

I’m smack-dab in the middle of the second to last chapter of The Veil Path to Destiny. Woot Woot.

Here is the last snippet of The Veiled Path to Destiny I will share before the book is published. Remember, it’s unedited and subject to change:

Caitriona quickly gained her footing lest she be dragged down the hallway after the sudden and unexpected turn around. “Where are we going?”

Daria turned her head to look at Caitriona, her silver eyes bright with excitement she hadn’t seen in too many days to count. “Outside. The sun is shining, and I can’t wait to feel it on my skin. It’s been too long and the Goddess only knows how long it will last.”

“Are you sure we should be doing that, my lady?”

Daria smiled. “Relax, we’re only going to the gardens.”

Red curls bouncing around her shoulders, Caitriona rolled her eyes and shook her head. “I’ve heard that one before. You’re going to get me fired one of these days.”

“Pffft…Iauron won’t fire you. He’ll just withhold my orgasms for a week, and trust me, I don’t want that.” The sound of Caitriona’s choked laugh stopped Daria in her tracks. “I said that out loud didn’t I?”

Her face red with sufficed laughter, Caitriona raised a hand to cover the smile she couldn’t keep from curving the corners of her mouth, and nodded. “You did.”

Daria huffed out an exasperated breath, “Well frick! I didn’t say anything, and you…you’ll forget hearing what I didn’t say.”

Caitriona giggled, “Oh, but you did, and I won’t.”

Daria glared at Caitriona who had become more of a friend than she was a servant. “Come on, we’re burning daylight.” She groused and continued their trek down the hall.

Once Caitriona had donned her boots and coat, they made their way to the kitchen to grab some bird feed. While Caitriona filled a small tin pail, Daria snagged a fresh from the oven biscuit. Under the watchful eye of the cook, split it in two and slathered each half with a healthy dollop of honey butter from the wooden bowl sitting on the counter. She took a bite and sighed in delight at the sweetness of the butter washing over her taste buds. “Sooo good, Molly. Will you save me some for when we come back in?”

“Of course, Miss. It would be my pleasure. I’ll have a fresh batch waiting in the warmer for you along with some hot chocolate.”

Snagging another biscuit, she wrapped it in a white cloth napkin and stowed it in large pocket of her cloak. “You’re a doll, Molly.” Daria complimented her, neatly avoiding the ‘thank you’ that automatically danced at the tip of tongue.

Molly’s face flushed with pride, “Off with you two now.”

Daria hooked her arm with Caitriona’s and rushed out the kitchen door leading to the side courtyard. She lifted her face to the soft breeze as it caressed her face and neck. She deeply inhaled the crisp, cool air and smiled.
The Veiled Path to Destiny~The Veil Book 2©Jolanthe Aleksander

Until next week…Happy Reading! 

WOWSA!

 

This week…set 1 of 2 in April drops for me. I’m so stinking proud of the group of authors in the Sultry & Sinful: Femmes of Paranormal group. We had an absolute blast and the hashtags for our little company of crazy will be bouncing around forever for us I’m sure. I can’t wait to work with these ladies again!

This set is about the relationship between two women. It is, to our thinking, an underrepresented genre in the word world. Regardless of what you personally prefer, love is love, and these stories take it to the next level…because, well it’s paranormal on top of being F/F. The stories are diverse and cover the spectrum; sweet, sassy, sultry, sexy, sinful…we’ve got all you S’s covered here.

Dropping tomorrow, you can still grab yours today at the preorder price of $0.99. Such a deal!

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XD398FG
Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B06XD398FG
B&N: http://bit.ly/2m3VSj0
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2m3WiGh

As I mentioned last week. I was just at North Iowa Book Bash. I love this event so hard. Here’s a couple of images from the event…yes, we do start signings by popping champagne…doesn’t everyone?

I had the great joy of getting to have a snap with the always amazing Jenna Jacob…and that handsome guy is Eric Jacob…the cover model I told you about last week. He’s a great example of how to be…say hello to him when you get the chance!

As I’ve been playing taskmaster on the youngest to wrap her online class, I’m behind schedule. Just in time, as I begin working on Ela’s…these little lovelies show up…INSPIRATION for sure!

And now…I’ll get back to the pages because…well, I took some time away and it’s time to put the hammer down. Read something great until I see you again! ~Sav

 

 

 

The frenzy continues…

Last week was a whirlwind. I’m here to tell you that it hasn’t let up yet. My Bookiversary Giveaway was a success in my eyes. I had to wait until the last minute to enter everyone’s name because there were so many, and they kept coming right up until the cutoff time. Congratulations to Heather Stoltz on winning a $25 Amazon gift card!

This week I’m running the Release Giveaway, and the prize is a Kindle Fire. Apparently, this is a pretty good prize, going by the number of entries I have already. And, they’re still coming in. People are sharing like crazy, and I love it! I’ll be announcing the winner later today. Good luck everyone!

I finally got notice yesterday that my shipment from CreateSpace is on its way. In a few days, I’ll have 20 copies of Eternal Embrace at my house. A handful of them are already designated as prizes, but I’ll have quite a few to sign and send out. It’s easy enough to get a signed copy, drop me an email @ mgrangerauthor@gmail.com or pm me on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/MadisonGrangerKindredSeries/ I’ll get your address, and we’ll square away the details.

Other than that, I’ve been busy working on one of my stories I wrote a while back. I dusted it off, and started working on it again. The story was completed, but I’ve learned a lot since I wrote it, and I wanted to apply some of my new-found knowledge to it. I also want to beef up the story in a few places, because I want to expand it from a short story into a novella. Being that the story-line revolves around New Years, I’m aiming to get it published this December. IF things work out, that is.

I also posted my Urban Fantasy short story, A Daemon’s Desire, on my website. http://www.madisongranger.com/ This one was published in an anthology last year, and it’s no longer in print. I have plans to write more shorts with the main characters, Sully and Larke. Eventually, I’d like to compile them into one volume. For now, check it out, and let me know what you think.

Till next week,

~Madison

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A Hint of Things to Come

There is a giddiness that comes from having a great working plan in place for a project. Last night I had the pleasure of doing some preliminary  plotting with another author friend for  a story that may be a part of a project for next year. It was awesome to bounce around ideas with someone. I can’t wait to get started on this story. I’ll let you know what it is once it’s official.

Meanwhile, The Veiled Path to Destiny is closer to being done. I thought about sharing another snippet with you from it, but decided to share one from Beyond the Veil of Whispered Dreams~The Veil Book 1…for those who have not read book 1 yet.

Excerpt from Chapter 4

The mist cleared and Daria found herself in a forest glade lit by tiny globes of light that seemed to hover in the air. She could hear the gentle gurgling of a nearby stream. Glancing down at herself, Daria held her arms out in front of her body, astonished at the gown of gold silk that she wore. Never had she owned anything like it. Never had she seen or worn anything like it. Tiny, barely there straps clung to the edges of her shoulders, keeping the deep v fitted bodice from falling down. The skirt of the gown clung to her form without being tight and fell to the ground in a cloud of golden silk with a train that seemed impossible to walk with. The grass beneath her bare feet was a thick, soft blanket of green.

Iauron stood in the shadows, drinking her in. It had been so long since his ancient eyes had seen her. He could feel Verisiel’s essence flowing through the form of this human female that looked so much like her. He knew he must tread slowly as not to frighten her. Though she held the spirit of Verisiel within her, she was still very human in her thinking, and a very young human in comparison to his many centuries of existence.

“Tá tú go hálainn,” he said softly from his place in the shadows, wanting to give her a chance to acclimate to the idea that she was not here alone. He watched as she spun towards his voice, her delicate features showing a trace of shock and wariness.

Startled at the sound of a masculine voice, Daria spun around and noted that a fast escape would be next to impossible with the gown twisting around her ankles. She cleared her throat, swallowing her fear. “Excuse me?”

“Tá tú go hálainn,” Iauron repeated, stepping out into the open.

Daria looked up at the man stepping through the curtain of trees. He was taller than any man she had ever seen. The black leather jerkin framed the bare skin of his broad chest. The leather pants that clung to his muscular legs like a second skin disappeared into the boots that rode up over his knees, making her aware of her own bare feet. Her eyes travelled back up his body to his chiseled face with piercing sapphire blue eyes that stared at her with a knowing gleam. A smile curved one side of his mouth. She felt her knees knocking and the core of her body heating in response. Blushing, she hoped he hadn’t noticed the uncharacteristic reaction to him. The teasing glint in his eyes told her that he hadn’t missed a thing. She nearly groaned in embarrassment.

She raised a hand to her chest and took a deep breath, “I’m sorry. I don’t know what you said.” She frowned, “I don’t even know if you know what I’m saying. I apologize if I disturbed you, I didn’t realize anyone was here.” Bending slightly, she reached down to untangle the gown from her legs and turned to leave, “If you’ll excuse me.”

Iauron was amused by her babbling, a trait she had always had when he managed to fluster her. “You are beautiful.” His words managed to stay her intended flight. “Tá tú go hálainn means, you are beautiful,” he spoke softly and slowly approached her as one would approach a skittish doe.

She looked down at the gown, “It’s a very beautiful gown.”

Though he ached to touch her, he sensed that she was ready to bolt. He walked around her tense form to face her. “The gown is lovely, but ‘tis you who are beautiful.”

Daria looked down at her toes peeking beneath the hem of the gown and shook her head.

Iauron gently placed his fingertips beneath her chin and raised her face, smiling as she lifted her silver iridescent eyes to his, “Yes, mo chroí. Never doubt it. You are the truest beauty to be found in any realm.”
Beyond the Veil of Whispered Dreams~The Veil Book 1 © Jolanthe Aleksander

Until next week….Happy Reading!


~Jolanthe~

 

Return to the cave

I’m wrung out. Weirdly too. From Biloxi Mississippi to home is a 15 hour drive. I did that with few hiccups, though the drive to the gulf was nearly my undoing…15 hours on next to no sleep made the sway of the car far too soothing to easily continue. caffeine was my friend.  North Iowa Book Bash is a mere 4.4 hours away…should be able to do that blindfolded and in full zombie, but the return trip this time kicked my ass.

The great thing about it is that I sold out of 2 titles, and liberated most of my swag inventory….which means…I get to order books and choose new swag. YIPPPEEEE….it’s like a holiday all over again. My Mardi Gras connection is getting a call ASAP! I need more goodies with Book of Mysteries hitting this summer.

Seriously though, BFF Bookies do such a great job of putting on an amazing event. I swear – it’s like a reunion with all the folks that you shared the kids table with at Christmas and conspired with on how to liberate the desserts without the grown ups noticing. SO MUCH FUN! I will return every year they’ll have me. TRUTH. Normally, I’m a full table girl cuz I like to spread out. This year I had a half and shared which was fine…but I’d sit at a tv tray in the corner if I had to…if you’re in range – PUT THIS ON YOUR TO DO LIST! I promise you’ll thank me.

Other than a little library thing…I’m in the cave now. I’ve WAY overloaded my calendar and I’m raring to get on it. I’ve got a box set and an anthology releasing this month yet…but I’ve got FIVE more releases happening THIS YEAR…and after a brain detour in Clear Lake…I may be swapping a cover out yet for one of those (or quite possibly two) with a model whom I’ve come to respect for his professionalism and poise in the midst of the reader event crazy. It matters…and this guy has earned the marks…hope you agree when you see the covers. It makes me happy to give back to the community that shares this writing world.

So – keep an eagle eye on the horizon…there’s gonna be something popping up often. Til then, see you on the pages.  ~Sav

 

Bookiversaries, Releases, and more…

What a whirlwind week this has been! It’s been a time of celebration and preparation. My first book, Phoenix Rising celebrated its first bookiversary. To share the event with my incredible readers, I’m giving away a $25 Amazon gift card. Who wouldn’t want one of those, right?

Next week will be the release of the second story in my Kindred series, Eternal Embrace. I’m going big on this one, and giving away a Kindle Fire. I’ll be having a release party with the help of the fabulous Kelli Smith, so the excitement and fun continues.

When I got home from work this past Thursday, I had the proof copy of Eternal Embrace waiting for me. This was the first time to see it as an actual book. The thrill is indescribable. I know pride is one of the deadly sins, but I’ve never said I was perfect. Yes, I’m proud of this book. Thanks to the patience and perseverance of two talented editors; with their help, I made Eternal Embrace a book I’m proud to call my own. To me, it’s better than Phoenix Rising. And considering that Phoenix is my own personal heart story, it’s saying a lot.

And that’s the beauty of writing. If you work at it, you get better with each story. I’m almost done with A Destiny Denied, and have already started on Blindsided. Deuces Wild, the final book in the Kindred series is waiting for me, and I can’t wait to tackle it. I’ve got a great story line, and I’m eager to get to it. Unfortunately, I can’t keep up with all of them. *laughs* Something has to wait. I’ve got another paranormal romance I’d like to get out at the end of the year, and I’m working on some urban fantasy short stories, too.

On that note, I need to get back to work. Till next week,

~ Madison

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