A Writer’s Madness

I often heard people say that to be a writer you need to be at least a bit insane. At first I thought this was slightly offensive, but then I found out that those spreading what at the time I thought to be an ugly rumor were the authors themselves. I have always been a writer, but it wasn’t until recently that I decided to take the dive and seek a publisher. This is where the madness came in. Until then I was writing just for myself and half the time I didn’t even bother to edit my writing. Now I am exposed to what others think.

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Until yesterday I was being eaten up by the blues about my WIP, a “spin-off” (not a sequel) to my rom com Loved You Always. I have been down on myself from the get go. “This is not a good story”, “This is boring”, “There no feeling to this”, “Marcy does not sound like herself anymore”, and so on. I agonized over plot, dialogue, love scenes, character traits and quirks, you name it. I almost gave up on the manuscript but I was already in 30K words so–not being a quitter–I just couldn’t do it.

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Yesterday, I decided to read it from the beginning. And I was amazed at how not-bad it was. In fact, it was actually good. Yes, it needed some tweaking here and there but other than the usual revisions/edits it was a perfectly healthy rom com manuscript. I laughed at Marcy’s usual quirkiness and at the antics and fierce friendship of her sidekick, Celia.

And hence the madness. Being a published writer means allowing yourself to be vulnerable, to expose your inner thoughts to strangers. You know that dream everybody has of walking naked in your classroom or office? It’s kind of like that. You are exposed to ridicule. Considering writing comes from the heart, any criticism often feels like a personal attack. Sometimes it makes you mad but more often than not it breaks your heart and makes you doubt your choice of career.

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In spite of the paralyzing fear of what readers may say about their writing, a writer always seems to persevere, never giving up even when faced with often cruel reviews and the worst criticism of all; their own. Which in itself proves that we writers are crazier than the Mad Hatter.

But what a lovely madness it is.

From the Ashes of Hate

Caution: venting ahead.

I’ve been so disappointed with humanity lately. I woke up today feeling exhausted and felt even worse after listening to the news. Those of you who know me or follow me here and/or on Facebook know that I very rarely talk about politics, religion or sports (you may laugh about the last one but being married into a sports-fanatic family this is a no-no subject in our house). Being a woman of a certain age means I have been through many things the younger crowd can’t even imagine (now I really sound like my grandma).

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When I was ten my country went through a revolution. The fascist government that had been in power pretty much since royalty became a thing of the past was deposed after a military coup. For the next decade we lived and breathed politics—and what people who had been repressed for far too long thought meant freedom. The music we heard, the movies we watched, the shows on TV, the conversation at the coffee shop were all around politics.  It took a long time to go back to the regularly scheduled program of life in the global stage. I don’t want to go back to that.

I am tired of all the arguing and finger-pointing that has been going on for the past year. Worse, my heart breaks every time I watch news of violence in the name of ideologies that profess tolerance and peace. What the hell are we doing?

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I hear from friends who have “unfriended” friends and family members because they were on the “other side” (whatever the side may be), husbands and wives fighting over politics, hate spewing from people’s mouths no matter where you turn to. I’m tired. I feel cranky all the time. I go to yoga, find my peace but as soon as I leave the studio it hits me again, that anger that permeates the air of lately.

I thought we, humans, had evolved but it seems like we take one step forward only to take many more backwards. Freedom is our right, but let’s not forget what the definition of freedom is. I had to take a class on economy and politics when I was in college. I don’t remember much about it but there is one thing I will never forget; the way individual freedoms were defined. It goes like this: you’re free to do whatever up to the point when it begins infringing on somebody else’s freedom. That’s where it stops. I have lived by that tenet ever since. There’s been a lot of people stepping over that line these past few months.

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I have friends in both sides of the debate and it’s been painful to watch as one side attacks the other. And you want to know what the irony (and scariest) part of it all is? As someone who has never supported one side or the other exclusively and is an expert at observing (a major perk of being an introvert) I hear the almost exact complaints from either side. The left blames those on the right for the same things the right blames those on the left. It’s insane. It’s exhausting and serves absolutely no other purpose than creating an environment of anger and negative energy.

Yesterday, for the first time in a long while, I felt a glint of hope that we may yet be peaceful and rational people. From the ashes of what has been a troubling wave of hate and violence, something beautiful emerged. I’m so proud of what women across the country (and some males) managed to do yesterday (Jan 21). Crowds of thousands across the country marched in solidarity and peace to demand the respect we deserve as human beings. Ladies, I’m so proud of being a woman in the US today. Thanks you for protesting in peace. You give me hope.

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Note:  I didn’t make it to the March because of my fear of crowds (anxiety issues) but together with a few other women I celebrated the occasion at yoga by focusing on the fifth chakra (voice) and in solidarity with all my friends who were marching in a super crowded Washington D.C.

 

Fame and Secrets-Cover Reveal

Deranged Doctor Design has delivered yet another gorgeous cover!
Check out Fame and Secrets by Cora Kenborn!

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FAME AND SECRETS by Cora Kenborn

Lords of Lyre #2
Limitless Publishing, LLC
Releasing March 14th!

Purchase book #1

An empty house in Hollywood isn’t what Phoebe Ryan envisioned when she said “yes” to a rock star’s proposal…

Phoebe is pregnant and alone in Tinseltown. She had hoped for a fresh start, but instead gets flashing cameras and tabloid gossip while her famous fiancé is on tour. Then the body of a young woman surfaces, bearing the same scars Phoebe has kept hidden for years. Phoebe fears the nightmare she can’t forget has come to collect an overdue debt.

Julian Bale struggles to balance his life as a touring rock star and his new role as a family man…

Everyone wants something from him, but he just wants to go home to the woman he’s fought so hard to keep. When inside information comes to light, threatening his fiancée and unborn child, he’ll do whatever it takes to protect what’s his, even if it costs him everything he’s worked for.

Phoebe and Julian thought they left the drama and danger behind, but they thought wrong…

When the monster from Phoebe’s past claims the most innocent of victims, accusations and grief shred what they’ve fought to build. Some say tragedy can make or break a family, but can Phoebe and Julian unite to fight for what was taken from them, or will fame and secrets ruin everyone?

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MEET THE AUTHOR: Cora Kenborn writes romantic suspense novels with strong heroines, complex alphas, harrowing danger, and snappy banter. She is the author of the rock star stalker series, Lords of Lyre but refuses to be pigeon holed into one specific genre. She loves delving into the twisted mind of a dark villain as well as giggling while writing rom-com banter.

Cora lives in Eastern North Carolina and is a true Southern girl, growing up on sweet tea, front porches, and the simple life. She says “y’all,” “fixin’ to,” and should you deserve it, will “bless your heart.” She’s the proud mother three hyperactive and occasionally adorable children, and the wife of a husband who tolerates her chaotic writer’s cave.

Although reading is her passion, she can usually be found watching true crime shows and crafting inspiration for twisted new tales. Cora admits to being a horrible cook, an even worse baker, and believes she’s more dangerous with a hot glue gun than any weapon on earth. Oh, and she and autocorrect are mortal enemies.

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Rise Of The Deva’Shi- Cover Re

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Preorder here —> http://amzn.to/2ivCJbz

Synopsis:

A stolen girl. A legendary champion. A plan that might destroy Parthalan once and for all…

Aeolmar, First Hunter of Parthalan, leads a solitary life. Having long since abandoned his quest to kill Mersgoth—the demon that murdered his family—Aeolmar moves through his days with cold efficiency. Everything changes when he leads a training mission in Brennus, where he’s attacked by Mersgoth himself, and saved by an unlikely heroine.

Latera, first born and heir to Gannera’s throne, is kidnapped and left for dead in Parthalan’s vast forests. A lone human amongst Parthalan’s fae, she makes a home in Brennus, and lives a quiet life—until she finds herself defending a wounded First Hunter from a clutch of demons.

Back in Parthalan, Harek warns Asherah of something called the deva’shi—a warrior loyal only to the demon lord, Asgeloth. Both Aeolmar and Latera suspect that there is more to this deva’shi than what Harek has told them, but before they can learn the truth, Parthalan’s borders are attacked. Will Aeolmar and Latera be able to stop the deva’shi in time, or is it a distraction to hide Harek’s true plans?

RISE OF THE DEVA’SHI – book three of the Chronicles of Parthalan

Catch up on the series! Click the covers below to purchase book one and two!

Staying Grounded- New Release

stayinggrounded_amazonSTAYING GROUNDED by Marianne Rice
A Rocky Harbor Novel
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Limitless Publishing, LLC
Release Date: January 17, 2017

Graham Riley enjoys the laid-back freedom of a pilot’s life—until one choice puts his career in jeopardy…

Graham loves his job—it allows him to escape his troubled past and the stigma of being a murderer’s son. But after an altercation with a drunk passenger is posted on social media, he’s forced to go on administrative leave until his name can be cleared. To get his wings back, he must attend anger management classes, and to avoid the media frenzy near his home base in Texas, he heads to Rocky Harbor, Maine.

Responsible therapist Maggie O’Fallon wants a stable relationship with a man who’s not going anywhere…

Maggie grew up with parents who were never around, physically or emotionally. Needing steadiness in her life and in a relationship, she only dates men with normal jobs. But when Graham walks into her office and flashes his charming steel-blue eyes at her, she’s at a loss for words. Torn between her ethics and her heart, Maggie asks Graham to see a different therapist so they can explore the chemistry between them.

He has everything she’s been looking for—except stability…

Maggie touches something deep within Graham and he panics, pushing her away, too scared to face his feelings. But when a private investigator threatens to discredit not only Graham, but Maggie’s practice as well, he is faced with two choices. Fight…or take flight.

Battling a lawsuit and his heart, Graham must decide what’s more important—the life he thought he wanted…or Maggie. Maggie might be the only thing that will ever help Graham
Stay Grounded.

PURCHASE YOUR COPY TODAY!
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MEET THE AUTHOR: Marianne Rice writes contemporary romances set in small New England towns. Her heroes are big and strong, yet value family and humor, while her heroines are smart, sexy, sometimes a little bit sassy, and are often battling a strong internal conflict. Together, they deal with real life issues and always, always, find everlasting love. When she’s not writing, Marianne spends her time buying shoes, eating chocolate, chauffeuring her herd of children to their varying sporting events, and when there’s time, cuddling with her husband, a drink in one hand, a romance book in the other.

** PUBLISHER ** FACEBOOK ** TWITTER ** WEBSITE **

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Windows To The Soul

The eyes are windows to the soul. We all have heard this, but I happen to believe it. Picking my characters’ eye color is always of the utmost importance to me.

When I wrote Desert Jewel, Milenda the Afrikan princess had bright green eyes for a very particular reason; I wanted her to stand out as unique even among her own people and also because green is the color of hope, the color of life. Milenda was hope incarnated; the hope of a better future for the less privileged ones in her nation.

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Jaali is her young lover in the story. I wanted Jaali’s eyes to reflect not only the purity of his soul, the transparency of his intentions, but also his original background. Jaali was from the Northern Lands which roughly translates into the Nordic countries in our world. He had been taken by human traffickers as a child, never to see his country or his family again. But his eyes were as blue as the ocean and the sky of Scandinavia and as transparent as the ice covering of his homeland. Even though robbed of his innocence at a very early age, Jaali was pure of soul and had no malice in his heart. His pale, liquid eyes reflected that purity, not unlike that of snow-covered land.

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Even Milenda’s flying lizard, Mjusi, is not immune from my symbolic use of eye color. His are large and forest green like the jungle where he dwells and the hope he symbolizes for both the princess and her mate.

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Strange how a panster like me takes such pains when it comes to choose the eye  color of her characters!

When Angels Call – Character Creation

I debated whether to talk about Sky in this series about character creation, mostly because he is the main character in a book yet to be published. But if there was a character who speaks to me on a daily base it’s him; my angel—literally. He’s an angel, wings and all.

Sky Heavensent is an angel assigned to the Soul Collecting Squad under the supervision of Archangel Gabriel in my M/M paranormal romance (and romcom as well. I hate genre labels), Lavender Fields. He started as a way of surprising my readers in a flash fiction story. He was very good at it and I fell in love with Sky. I just had to give him a full-length story.

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Sky is klutzy, hyperactive, and very lonely. Among his perfect people he is the “imperfect” one, the one that is constantly blundering, the one that always seems to swim against the tide. The truth is that he has what the other angels have lost; true compassion, the ability to love truly and completely.

When Sky meets Caleb he doesn’t stop to think of himself in order to protect the one he loves and for him, Sky is willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for an angel (can’t tell you what it is. Sorry.).

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I loved creating Sky, not only because he is an angel—duh—but because he has a very distinct and altruistic personality. He’s an outcast (I do love my outcasts) and he is starved for love and companionship. He is also a very curious soul—which is always getting him in trouble—with a thirst for knowledge and understanding of others. I love that. I find people who are content with living inside their bubbles puzzling to say the least.

When Sky falls in love he falls completely and literally. Writing about him and his love for Caleb, was—to use a word I seem to use way too much—awesome. Their love was so strong I swear I felt it myself. These guys did not give me a moment’s rest; I dreamed about them, thought about them, wrote about them…the manuscript is off to my editor and yet, they are still haunting me—in a good way. Strange how characters from a fantasy can feel so real to you in ways real people don’t.

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Confessions of a Nerdoholic- Cover Reveal

Love the cover and the title for this RomCom. Can’t wait to read it!


COVER REVEAL


Coming January 24, 2017

Blurb

Eloise Duncan has a type. Skinny jeans and black rimmed glasses. She’s a nerdoholic, and she isn’t ashamed…
Eloise isn’t the party all night, keg stand kind of college girl. She works part-time at the Sugar Cube bakery, and keeps her nose in a book. Even with her above par study habits, she still manages to have a failing anatomy grade at mid-term. To cheer herself up, she stops by the library a few hours a week to check out Oliver Edwards, the guy of her dreams who doesn’t realize she exists. At least, not yet.
Eloise has a plan. No guy, even nerds, can resist a good cupcake, and Eloise makes the best cupcakes on earth…
She leaves one of her famous strawberry cheesecake cupcakes on top of Oliver’s chemistry book. It’s enough to brighten her mood, but not enough to bring her grade up. When she accidentally hits Oliver in the crotch with her anatomy book, it turns out Oliver isn’t just hot, he’s also nice and forgiving. He offers to tutor Eloise in exchange for an endless supply of sugary treats.
It’s a daydream come true, but if Eloise doesn’t pass anatomy, her father will jerk her out of school…
Her father never wanted her to go to Maryland. He wants her back on the west coast, following in his footsteps at Pepperdine. He’ll use her bad grade to bring her home.
Will Eloise be able to tame her nerd lust long enough to make the grade she needs to pass her class, or will she have to leave her new love behind in…

MEET THE AUTHOR

Savannah was born in Hyden, Kentucky. She received her M.S in Speech Language Pathology from The University of Mississippi in 2009. She’s been writing since the early age of nine when she begged her parents for a type writer for Christmas.
She now lives in Corbin, Ky with her husband of eight years, John, and their two wonderful daughters, Delilah and Gracie.
When she isn’t working, or running after her kids, she spends her free time traveling the country with her husband. There is nothing better than a day of football in the grove, a late night of basketball at Rupp Arena or slapping the glass to celebrate another Washington Capitals goal.
She is a strong believer that with enough hard work and determination you can accomplish anything.