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Official blog of Kelly Hashway, young adult and middle grade author.
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1. Friday Feature: Don't Fall

In this modern day retelling of Rapunzel, Anya has her books, her photography, and her daydreams. She doesn’t think she needs anything else.

She lives in a house on the edge of town with her adopted mother, who goes to extreme measures to keep her daughter safe. Anya doesn’t even go to school, but instead has a private tutor. Anya tries not to acknowledge her loneliness; she puts her efforts into pleasing her mom, and gives her heart to her stories, secretly wishing for a story of her own.

Then one day at the library, the only place she's allowed to go, she takes a picture of a beautiful boy.

Before long she's lying to her mom, and sneaking out late at night to meet Zander. But Zander wants more than a secret romance. If Anya wants to be with the boy of her dreams, she will have to risk her relationship with the only other person she's ever cared about.

Grab the book on Amazon.

Here's what people are saying:

"It's sweet, it's got a great heart, it's got cute boys, and great books, and was generally just one of those reads that left me sighing happily as I read. Plus, cupcakes--who doesn't like cupcakes?" -Meradeth Houston

"The story is just so sweet and delicious. It's the perfect YA read and a great one for adults to enjoy too. I accepted it as a fairy tale and just enjoyed it. I'm sure anyone who loves YA would enjoy this one too." -Valerie at Stuck in Books

"Rachel Schieffelbein is so good at creating loveable characters and putting them in situations that make me really care what happens to them. It was fun to see how she'd taken the base story of Rapunzel, a girl kept apart from the world and falling in love for the first time, and made it all her own." -Susan Crispell
Rachel grew up in a tiny town in Minnesota. She still lives there with her husband, their four kids, three cats, and a perfectly overweight black lab. She coaches high school speech and theater, rides Arabian horses, reads as much as she can, and writes stories.

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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2. Writer Wednesday: Coauthor Projects

Today's topic comes from Sheena-Kay. Thanks, Sheena-Kay!

"What do you think of coauthor projects and have you ever or will you ever do one?"

I fully admit that I'm crazy when I draft a book. Honestly, I'd feel sorry for whoever was brave enough to coauthor a book with me. Part of me really thinks it would be fun. I see authors who team up repeatedly to write together, and they appear to be having a blast. But then that other part of me thinks it would drive me crazy to relinquish control of the story and also to have to wait for someone else to get chapters back to me before I could continue.

There are definite benefits though. You have two audiences you are essentially merging. That's double one author's readership. So the marketing possibilities and the reach are greater than an author writing on his/her own. That part has always appealed to me, and I'm sure it always will. You also have someone to travel with to events to promote the book. I like the idea of having another author with me at book signings and speaking events. Furthermore, writing can be lonely at times, but coauthoring certainly isn't. So yeah, there are definite benefits to coauthoring.

Will I ever coauthor a book? Who knows? For now, I'll say I admire those who do.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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3. Monday Mishmash 10/17/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. Fading Into the Shadows  I've set some dates for my upcoming mythology-based YA, Fading Into the Shadows. The book will release on January 16, 2017 and the cover reveal will be November 16-18. More info soon. :)
  2. Editing  I have two edits on my plate this week. I'm finishing round three on one and starting another.
  3. Book Events  I really need a master list of every book convention and expo (Do they make one of those?) so I can plan which ones I want to attend in 2017. So far, I'm doing YA Fest in March and my local book expo, which is usually in April.
  4. Revisions  I'm hoping to have some time to work on revising my adult suspense this week.
  5. Proud Mom  Last week, my daughter got to read the morning announcements at school because she was chosen Student of the Month. I got to hear her do the announcements, and I was blown away by how much feeling she puts into reading aloud. She reads aloud at home all the time, and I feel like it's really help her learn tone and inflection. So proud of her. :)
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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4. Friday Feature: Cage of Deceit by Jennifer Anne Davis

Seventeen-year-old Allyssa appears to be the ideal princess of Emperion--she's beautiful, elegant, and refined. She spends her days locked in a suffocating cage, otherwise known as the royal court. But at night, Allyssa uses her secret persona--that of a vigilante--to hunt down criminals and help her people firsthand.

Unfortunately her nightly escapades will have to wait because the citizens of Emperion may need saving from something much bigger than common criminals. War is encroaching on their country and in order to protect her people, Allyssa may have to sacrifice her heart. Forced to entertain an alliance through marriage with a handsome prince from a neighboring kingdom, she finds herself feeling even more stifled than before. To make matters worse, the prince has stuck his nosy squire, Jarvik, to watch her every move.

Jarvik is infuriating, bossy and unfortunately, the only person she can turn to when she unveils a heinous plot. Together, the unlikely pair will have to work together to stop an enemy that everyone thought was long gone, one with the power to destroy her family and the people of Emperion. Now the cage Allyssa so longed to break free from might just be the one thing she has to fight to keep intact. In order to save her kingdom, she will have to sacrifice her freedom, her heart, and maybe even her life.

Grab the book on Amazon.

Jennifer graduated from the University of San Diego with a degree in English and a teaching credential. Afterwards, she finally married her best friend and high school sweetheart. Jennifer is currently a full-time writer and mother of three young children. Her days are spent living in imaginary worlds and fueling her own kids’ creativity.

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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5. Writer Wednesday: Mixing Exercise with Creativity

When I posted that I've been walking while editing, I had no idea it would get such a reaction from people. To clarify, yes, I'm walking on the treadmill WHILE editing on my laptop. My laptop sits all nice and cozy in the magazine holder on my treadmill. I set my speed at 3.2, which is a nice pace for a walk. Not slow, but not power walking.

Now, I know some of you are wondering how I'm doing this since I fully admit to being accident-prone. To be honest, it's not difficult. Typing keeps me in the perfect position on the treadmill so I can't accidentally trip myself and fall, scraping up both knees so bad I have scars. Not that I've ever done that or that my knees are now covered in purple scars. ;)

But seriously, walking while working (either editing or writing) keeps me focused and feeling creative. You know how when writer's block hits and you feel compelled to step away and take a nice long walk to clear your head? Well, I'm essentially clearing my head while continuing to work! And you know how exercise gets your brain working, which makes you feel more creative? See where I'm going with this? It's amazing. I feel so refreshed and focused when I walk while editing or writing.

So I encourage you to try it if you have a treadmill handy. But please do be careful.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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6. Monday Mishmash 10/10/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. Thank You!  I want to thank everyone who grabbed a copy of After Loving You during its release week last week. It was such a great release day, and I love you all for it. If you haven't gotten a copy yet, but would like to, you can grab the book on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Kobo.
  2. After Loving You Blog Tour  This week is the blog tour for After Loving You, hosted by Inkslinger PR. Love them.
  3. Editing  October is a packed month with edits, but I'm loving every second of it. My eyes...not so much.
  4. Walking And Editing  I'm so in love with editing while walking on my treadmill. Why didn't I discover this sooner? I walk three times a day (for a half hour at a time), which keeps me focused and energized to work.
  5. Motley Education Release Day!  Happy release day to S.A. Larsen! Motley Education releases today! Seriously, guys, go grab this book. It's a fantastic middle grade read. I fell in love with it on page one. It's that good, and you can't support an author sweeter than Sheri. Grab your copy here
    Forget having a lively after school social life, Ebony Charmed is fighting to keep the entire afterlife alive.

    Ebony’s less-than-average spirit tracking abilities are ruining more than sixth grade at Motley Junior High: School for the Psychically and Celestially Gifted. Her parents argue so much her dad's moved out. And, even though he’s scared of his own shadow and insists on bringing his slimy, legless lizard everywhere they go, Ebony wouldn’t survive without her best friend, Fleishman.

    When Ebony’s Deadly Creatures & Relics’ project goes missing she learns her missing project is one of the keys to saving the spirit world.

    Now Ebony and Fleishman must battle beasts from Norse mythology to retrieve her project before spirits are lost, the Well of Urd dries up, and Ebony loses all hope of reuniting her family. But someone lies in wait, and he has other plans…including creating a new world of spirits without them in it.

That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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7. Friday Feature: Louder Than Words by Iris St. Clair

I thought I’d hit rock bottom when my dad died.

I was wrong.

I never dreamed my mom would choose drugs and alcohol over me.

I was wrong about that too.

I thought teachers were there to instruct, to guide, to counsel.

Wrong doesn’t begin to describe what nearly happened that last day of my Junior year. Lesson learned; trust is for suckers and actions speak louder than words.

New plan. Keep up my grades, earn a scholarship, tuck into as tight a ball as possible and roll on out of this town and this life. 

But this boy, this Casanova transplant with a funny accent, who’s way too charming to be healthy for a girl... Why won’t he let me be?

I wish I hadn’t let him in on my secrets...well, most of them.

I wish I hadn’t grown to look forward to our daily walks to work.

But mostly, I wish I hadn’t freaked out when he tried to steal a kiss.

Maybe I wouldn’t be parked in the friend zone. Maybe he wouldn’t be dating a girl I loathe. Maybe I wouldn’t be in this hell of wanting what I can’t have but having what I thought I wanted—to be left alone.

Grab the book on Amazon.

A note from the author:
If this story seems like it was ripped from the headlines, there is some truth to that impression.

The year my son began high school, I learned at a parents' booster meeting that an esteemed teacher had been arrested for having a sexual relationship with a student. The teacher's spouse also worked at the high school. Both teachers taught classes in my son's magnet program. The teacher went to jail. A family was torn apart. 

My thoughts, however, were with the student and student body. What led to the affair? Who made the first move and was coercion involved? How did the victim react to the publicity, the criminal charges and trial? What did the other students think and believe? 

Although Louder Than Words is a fictional account, my goal in writing Ellen's story was to use a far too common event as a vehicle to convey strength and courage to readers, especially those whose voices have been hushed by fear, lack of self-confidence or damaged self-esteem.

Thank you for reading!
Iris St. Clair is the pen name for a long-suffering cubicle worker by day, a Walter Mitty-like dreamer by night.

No matter what genre she writes, she prefers witty, insecure heroines and kind, persistent heroes able to break through to the gooey heart inside.

In high school she was voted most likely to win at Monopoly and Clue, but least likely to throw a ball anywhere near a target. Thank goodness writing requires less hand-eye coordination, punctuation errors notwithstanding.

Iris believes in the two-year "fish or cut bait" dating rule and has a 20+ year marriage and two teenaged sons as proof of concept. She lives, writes, dreams and dances in the rainy Portland, OR area.

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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8. Writer Wednesday: How to Write Faster

When I announced my release schedule for 2017, it prompted the question "How do you write so fast?" (Thanks for asking Kristin Smith.) I seem to get this question a lot, and I realized that I usually answer it by saying I fast draft. But since the question keeps being posed, I realized my answer up until now hasn't been good enough.

So let me try to explain. My editing schedule tends to fill up very quickly, which means I don't have a lot of time to draft books. I'll get a week or two here and there. Writing "quickly" becomes a necessity. I don't have any other choice. Sometimes I have a log of ideas I haven't yet written and I'll pull one of those out to work on. From there I type as much as possible whenever I can find a few minutes. When I have an editing break, I get the entire school day to write, and I write for the ENTIRE school day. I eat (when I remember) at my laptop, which means I need to eat food that only requires one hand so I can keep typing. I kid you not when I say I'm crazy when drafting. With a capital C. 

Basically, what I've learned is we can train ourselves to adapt. If your schedule requires you to write at ten o'clock at night each night, then do it. You will train your brain to be creative at that time every day. Or if your schedule means a few minutes here and there throughout the day, do it! You will train yourself to be creative on a whim. It does take training though, so when you are struggling, push through. You have to get your brain to that point where it gives in and says, "Fine, let's do this!" So often I tell myself I have to type faster because I have an edit coming in two days and I need to finish the draft first. I'm tough on myself, but that's because I need to be.

So no matter what your schedule is, if you train your brain to be creative when you need it to be, you will be able to write faster.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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9. Monday Mishmash 10/3/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. After Loving You Release Day!  It's finally here! After Loving You is officially out in the world today. You can grab a copy on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or wherever you prefer to buy your books. 
  2. YA Fest  I'm happy to announce I'll be at YA Fest on March 18, 2017! I'm so excited to be part of this event again. 
  3. Editing  I have a lot of edits on my plate this month. Luckily I really enjoy my clients' work.
  4. October  My favorite month is here. I love the smell of October. Sorry to all you pumpkin lovers, though. I'm not a fan of pumpkin anything, unless it's a pumpkin to put out on display. But hey, that means more for you guys. ;)
  5. Allergies  While I love fall, it doesn't love me. The allergy headaches have begun.
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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10. Friday Feature: Lizzie & McKenzie's Fabulous Adventures

Today I'm happy to share a book I've had the pleasure of reading. The story is fun and has a great message. Check out Lizzie & McKenzie's Fabulous Adventures: Mayhem in Madrid by Dina Tate!

Imagine if all the little girls of the world looked alike. If the Same Glam Goddess gets her way, it can surely happen. McKenzie Rivers, the pint-sized daredevil, and Lizzie Sanders, who loves all things frilly, aren’t afraid of being different. And that’s exactly why Princess Lovina of Exquisite City calls upon them to stop the Same Glam Goddess from making all the little girls of the world look the same. With the aid of their magical lovely lockets and fierce diva weaponry, Lizzie and McKenzie will travel the world to find the Seven Crystals of Sisterhood. Their first stop is the magical city of Madrid. Lizzie and McKenzie will need help to obtain the crystals before the Same Glam Goddess gets her hands on them. If the crystals are not found, little girls all over the world will remain under the spell of the Same Glam Goddess and will lose their identities forever! Will Lizzie and McKenzie be able to find the crystals, break the spell, and stop the Same Glam Goddess?

http://amzn.to/2cLG1VR - Soft/Hardcover

Barnes & Noble
http://bit.ly/2d3atWs Soft/ Hardcover

You can also check out Dina's website at lizzieandmckenzie.com to read the 1st chapter!

Dina Cherice Tate spent her childhood reading, writing short stories, climbing stuff with her six older brothers and becoming a cartoon fanatic, which became the perfect groundwork for writing a chapter book series. Today she is an amateur photographer, traveler and has taken her love of Japanese animation and comics to another level. Dina is an Adjunct Instructor at New York University School of Professional Studies. While fine-tuning her writing skills, she won the Andrea Davis Pinkney Chapter Book Writing Scholarship; The Chapter Book Alchemist - Children’s Book Academy.

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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11. Writer Wednesday: A New Release Every Two Months?

Now that I'm officially going indie, I can do exciting things like set my own production schedule. Why is this so exciting? Because over the years, I've had to either months between releases or releases stacked so close together it was tough to market my books. No more.

I have 2017 and 2018 mapped out and my release schedule looks like this:

That's two months between releases. Will it be tough? Yes! But I think the schedule is going to keep readers happy, and I work better on a schedule so I think I'll be happy too.

Right now, my January 2017 release is so close to being completely finished (and it's only September!). My April release is with my editor, and I'll be polishing up my July release to get that ready for my editor as well. Things are looking good so far. :)

Do you like when authors release books a few months apart?

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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12. Monday Mishmash: 9/26/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. Only One Week Until After Loving You Releases!  I can't believe October 3rd is almost here! 
  2. Editing  I'm finishing up a client edit this week in time for a new one on October 1st.
  3. Two Work Days With Extended Hours  This week my daughter has student council and chorus after school, so thus begins my longer work hours on Tuesdays AND Wednesdays. 
  4. 2017 Publication Schedule  I'm going to be releasing books every two months in 2017. Stay tuned for more information on that this Wednesday.
  5. Fall!  My favorite season is here! I love the smell of fall, specifically the smell of October. October has been my favorite month all my life. There's something special about it.
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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13. Friday Feature: Sundials and White Cats

Thanks so much for hosting me, Kelly.  I appreciate the opportunity to visit with you and the folks that follow your blog.  Some of whom I know, some who I look forward to getting to know.

Today, I’d like to mention a few brief facts about white cats.

White cats are unique in the fact that they’re prone to deafness, especially if they’re blue-eyed.  They’re also prone to skin cancer.  In some cultures white cats are considered good luck.

But what do white cats have to do with sundials?   In general nothing, in this particular story it’s the pet that leads the protagonist, Sarah Miles, to discover the sundial.   

He came through time to find her.

As Sarah Miles drives down Eighteenth Street a stranger materializes in front of her car. She throws on her brakes, braces for impact and...drives straight through him. For a brief moment, his voice echoes in her head, "Saura." Then he's gone. Later that day, she discovers the SUNDIAL and her incredible journey through time begins.

“Meghan, don’t try to come through this, you’ll get scratched. I’m getting the pesky cat and coming out.”

When in trouble, Monet was the pesky cat, the damn cat, or the bad cat.

She walkedover and bent down to pick him up. A flash of color blinded her. She blinked then squinted. For the first time, she saw that Monet had plopped down beside an old sundial.

“Meghan, come here. You’ve got to see this,” she called out.

Meghan gave an exaggerated sigh. “You said not to come in.”

“I’ve found an old sundial. Or rather Monet has.”

“A real one? The rustling began again as Meghan started pushing her way through.

Appears so.” She squatted down to study it. “Looks to be a hundred years old. I bet it’s valuable. You should see the intricate detail. This will make a great piece to paint!”

Words embossed the face of the dial. “There’s writing on it. She read aloud, “Fate cannot be...drat, moss has grown over the rest of the words.”

A wave of superstitious terror washed over Meghan. Suddenly, the pieces all fell into place. And as the old woman prophesied, she believed.

“Sarah, don’t. Get out of there now. Please, Sarah, please,” she cried, her teeth chattering.

What’s wrong with you?

“There’s actuallyheat radiating from it. Surprising, it’s not that warm out.”

“Sarah, please, don’t you remember what the old lady said?” She fought her way throughthe overgrowth, barely feeling the scratches a thorny branch left on her face or the warm blood trickling down her cheek. The thicket conspired to keep her out.

Tears streamed down her face as she pushed at the bracken separating herself and her aunt.

She broke through just as Sarah reached down to brush the moss from the sundial.

“No, Sarah, no,” she screamed.

Later her mind would play the scene over again in slow motion: Sarah’s hand as it reachedout; Monet jumping playfully at her fingers,bringing them both in touch with the sundial; the boom; the jagged streak of white; and then nothing. They were gone, leaving Meghan alone in the clearing with the sundial.

Sundial is on sale for .99 September 19-25 at Amazon.
Sandra writes YA Fantasy, Romance, and Metaphysical Nonfiction. She lives in sunny North Carolina with her husband, a brood of critters and an occasional foster cat. The last animal member of the family, a kitten, came hurtling out of the woods in southern Illinois to land at her feet. He made the trek back to North Carolina, with her and her husband, and wasted no time settling into the household.

Although shopping is high on the list, her greatest pleasure is sitting on her porch, listening to the birds, sipping coffee or a latte and enjoying a good book. She's a vegetarian and a Muay Thai enthusiast.

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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14. Writer Wednesday: Self-Publishing Costs

With the number of authors moving in the direction of self-publishing, I've decided to share some things you should know before you dive into self-publishing as an option.

First, understand that the costs are all on you. You are the publisher, so you are responsible for editing, cover design, formatting, and promotion. The good news is that you get to make all the decisions and hire the people you want to help you with your book. Let's break down the big costs involved.

Editing:  There are a lot of great editors out there and their rates differ. You have to do your research and find one that's affordable and offering the type of edits you're looking for. Don't skimp on editing though. I'm not just saying that because I'm an editor. I'm saying it because every author (I don't care if you're famous or not) needs an editor.

Cover Design:  Again, there are a ton of designers out there and they all have different prices. Premade covers are also an option, and they are less expensive. The difficult part is finding one that works for your book. Join some Facebook groups for cover design. Designers post covers, sales, and even ask for suggestions for future premades. They're also happy to work with you on custom made covers.

Formatting:  I know a lot of authors who do their own formatting. Print is a pain, but it's not that difficult. You can teach yourself to do it. There are tons of programs to download and convert your file to all the different ebook files, too. Or you can hire a formatter. I hire a formatter for my ebooks and I format my print books myself.

Promotion:  This is the one that makes all our eyes twitch. I have a social media manager, and she's worth way more than her weight in gold. You can hire a publicist or blog tour companies, or you can choose to do the promotional efforts on your own. Just keep in mind they take a lot of time, so plan accordingly. Advertising is available on Facebook, newsletter subscriptions, and book sites. Teaming up with other authors to offer a big giveaway is also great for exposure and it's inexpensive.

Now this is just touching the surface, but I hope it gives you and idea of what to expect when you go into self-publishing. Yes, you will have to put out money, but the good news is that whatever money comes in from sales is all yours. See which efforts work well for you and where you need to focus that money. It took me years, but I taught myself cover design. I'm lucky enough to have a graphic artist for a sister and she bails me out when I can't do something, but you can learn different aspects of this business and lessen costs that way. I've been on both sides of publishing, and I've made it a point to learn every step along the way. The experience has been so valuable.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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15. Monday Mishmash 9/19/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. Motley Education Cover Reveal  I'm so excited to share the cover of SA Larsen's upcoming middle grade title through Leap Books. I fell in love with this book and new I needed to acquire it for Leap Books, Seek. Here's Motley Education: 

  2. Editing  I finished one client edit this weekend and now I'm on to the next.
  3. Picture Day  I'm helping out with picture day at my daughter's school tomorrow.
  4. Longer Work Days  My daughter was elected student council class rep and she joined chorus, so my work days are longer on Tuesdays and Wednesdays now since she'll be staying after school for those clubs. I miss her already, but oh the possibilities for more work to be done!
  5. Two Weeks Until After Loving You 

    That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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16. Friday Feature: Timeless Cover Reveal

TIMELESS (#3 Maiden of Time) by Crystal Collier #CoverReveal

Book Title: TIMELESS (Maiden of Time #3)
Author: Crystal Collier
Genre: YA Paranormal Historical
Release Date: November 1, 2016


In 1771, Alexia had everything: the man of her dreams, reconciliation with her father, even a child on the way. But she was never meant to stay. It broke her heart, but Alexia heeded destiny and traveled five hundred years back to stop the Soulless from becoming.

In the thirteenth century, the Holy Roman Church has ordered the Knights Templar to exterminate the Passionate, her bloodline. As Alexia fights this new threat—along with an unfathomable evil and her own heart—the Soulless genesis nears. But none of her hard-won battles may matter if she dies in childbirth before completing her mission.

Can Alexia escape her own clock?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Crystal Collier is an eclectic author who pens clean fantasy/sci-fi, historical, and romance stories with the occasional touch of humor, horror, or inspiration. She practices her brother-induced ninja skills while teaching children or madly typing about fantastic and impossible creatures. She has lived from coast to coast and now calls Florida home with her creative husband, four littles, and “friend” (a.k.a. the zombie locked in her closet). Secretly, she dreams of world domination and a bottomless supply of cheese. You can find her on her Blog, FacebookGoodreads, or follow her on Twitter.

Want the first chapter free? Sign up HERE.

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17. Writer Wednesday: When You Have to Put A Draft On Hold

I used to think there was nothing worse than having to put an unfinished manuscript aside, but I've come to change my mind about this. With my editing schedule, I often have to write in sprints and then put a manuscript away until my next small break between edits. At first I hated this and I'd give up sleep to finish a draft before the next edit landed in my inbox. Not anymore.

I've found that I love returning to an unfinished story. I get fresh ideas about the plot and characters, and knowing I only have half or a quarter of the book left to write is exciting and totally doable on a time restraint. So I'm not stressing anymore. If I have to put a book aside,  I know I'll come back to it.

Do you ever have to put an unfinished draft aside? How do you feel about it?

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post. 

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18. Monday Mishmash 9/12/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. Into the Fire Boxset Preorder Only $.99!  My publisher has put the Into the Fire trilogy into a boxset. It's set to release September 20th, but if you preorder it, you can get all three books for only $.99! You have to grab it before September 20th though, so grab it now here
  2. Into the Fire FREE on September 13th!  The deals don't stop! If you aren't sure about spending $.99 for the boxset, you can try Into the Fire absolutely FREE on Tuesday, September 13. Grab it here.
  3. Scholastic Book Fair  I'll be working the Scholastic Book Fair at my daughter's school this week. You know what that means. Books!!!
  4. School Visit  I'm visiting my daughter's fourth grade class on Wednesday to talk about writing. Hopefully I don't embarrass her. ;)
  5. Editing  In addition to the book fair and school visit this week, I have a client edit to work on.
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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19. After Loving You Cover Reveal!

It's finally here! Cover reveal day for After Loving You, my Ashelyn Drake new adult romance. Check it out!

When Mia Thompson and Jared Grande break up before college, they think that’s the end for them. 

But two years later, Mia is stalking Jared’s Facebook page and he’s contacting her every chance he gets. Even though they’re both seeing other people, they can’t seem to say good-bye to the past they shared. 

One way or another, they’ll have to figure out how to love again. Is it time to get back together or time to move on? 

This title will release on October 3, 2016, but you can preorder your copy today here.

I'm going to be hosting some really awesome giveaways coming up soon, but you must be subscribed to my newsletter for one and a member of my street team, Kelly's Coven, for the other. If you're interested, you can sign up for my newsletter here. I only send out newsletters when I have something new to share with you and they almost always include a free book or giveaway for you. If you'd like to be part of my street team, Kelly's Coven, and help me spread the word about my books (as well as get exclusive giveaways, sneak peeks at my upcoming books, and talk to me whenever you'd like), you can join the Facebook group here.

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20. Monday Mishmash 8/29/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. First Day of School :(  I'm one of those mothers who cries on the ride home from dropping my daughter off at school on the first day every year. It doesn't matter how old she gets or that I know she has a ton of friends. She's my best bud and I miss her like crazy.
  2. After Loving You Cover Reveal  If you missed the cover reveal for After Loving You this past weekend, here it is! You can preorder your copy today here
  3. Back to My Usual Schedule  Now that school is back in session, my writing/editing schedule is too. The days always feel so long this time of year because I'm not used to working for five and a half hours straight after breaking up my time during the summer.
  4. Editing  My editing schedule is packed from now through January. That's good though because I need to make money, right?
  5. WIP Put on Hold  I've written quite a bit this year, so I don't feel bad that I have to put my current WIP on hold in order to edit for clients. I might work on it slowly (a few thousand words a day), but we'll see.
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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21. Introducing Author Ayla Hashway

I couldn't be happier to post today. My daughter, Ayla, received her paperback proof of her first book, The Secret Sister, yesterday and it's gorgeous! I'm so proud of all the hard work she put into this book. She spent her summer writing and reading as much as she could, and she really learned a lot—including how to overcome writer's block.

Together, we decided that she's going to keep her amateur status and make the ebook free. Print copies will be made for family and friends, but she won't make any money from them. This experience is about learning to write well, sharing her love of stories, and being proud of the accomplishment of writing a book. And that's a HUGE accomplishment. Did I mention she's only nine?

And yes, she's my new favorite author.

So without further ado, check out the gorgeous cover of The Secret Sister!

And here are some pictures of the paperback.

The ebook is already up on Smashwords and ready for download. And once again, it's FREE, so grab your copy here.

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22. Friday Feature: Piper Morgan (And Some Great Advice By Stephanie Faris)

When Piper Morgan has to move to a new town, she is sad to leave behind her friends, but excited for a new adventure. She is determined to have fun, be brave and find new friends.

In Piper Morgan Joins the Circus, Piper learns her mom’s new job will be with the Big Top Circus. She can’t wait to learn all about life under the big top, see all the cool animals, and meet the Little Explorers, the other kids who travel with the show. She’s even more excited to learn that she gets to be a part of the Little Explorers and help them end each show with a routine to get the audience on their feet and dancing along!

In Piper Morgan in Charge, Piper’s mom takes a job in the local elementary school principal’s office. Piper is excited for a new school and new friends—and is thrilled when she is made an “office helper.” But there is one girl who seems determined to prove she is a better helper—and she just so happens to be the principal’s daughter. Can Piper figure out how to handle being the new girl in town once more?

Stephanie Faris is here to talk to you all about a topic that I think is brilliant and extremely helpful for all writers. So sit back and enjoy!

Why Reading Outside Your Genre Can Make Your Writing Stronger
by Stephanie Faris
I love my blog friends. Among us there are those who write children’s, middle-grade, YA, paranormal, adventure, horror, and romance, just to name a few genres. That means when I read my friends’ books, I often get to take a break from girly children’s fiction and read a wide variety of other things.
When I was younger, I thought that would hurt me but I’ve come to realize it only helps. Fiction, at its very foundation, is made up of similar elements. The conflict in a mystery novel may be different from what you’d find in a fantasy novel, but there are similar emotions, challenges, and resolutions. By reading these other books, you learn more about what you want to write.
What do I mean by this? Let’s take Kelly’s Into the Fire as an example. Her main character, Cara, is on the verge of transforming into a Phoenix. Knowing the end of her time as herself is near, she feels conflicted about the feelings she’s developing for the new guy in town.
I’ve never written a book with a character who is on the verge of becoming a Phoenix. I have, however, written romances where a couple is kept apart through extenuating circumstances. In the type of fiction I write, though, that conflict would likely be in the form of protecting a career or not wanting to hurt a loved one.
Even in the tween books I write, romance is a no-no. However, many of the conflicts I read about in romance novels can translate to the trauma friendships suffer in sixth and seventh grade. The girls in my characters may have crushes, even though they never develop into a real romance. Conflict can exist there, as well.
Reading anything can also help improve your own prose. I love Harlan Coben’s mysteries and even though they’re completely different from the books I write, he makes me want to be a better writer. He has a way of phrasing things that is just so beautiful that you can’t help but want to push yourself to be that good. And that, in my opinion, is what becoming a better writer is all about.

Because Stephanie is so awesome, she is hosting a giveaway for a $25 Amazon gift card and autographed copies of her books. Enter here:

Stephanie Faris knew she wanted to be an author from a very young age. In fact, her mother often told her to stop reading so much and go outside and play with the other kids. After graduating from Middle Tennessee State University with a Bachelor of Science in broadcast journalism, she somehow found herself working in information technology. But she never stopped writing.

Stephanie is the Simon & Schuster author of 30 Days of No Gossip and 25 Roses. When she isn’t crafting fiction, she writes for a variety of online websites on the topics of business, technology, and her favorite subject of all—fashion. She lives in Nashville with her husband, a sales executive. 

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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23. Monday Mishmash 9/5/16

Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. The Secret Sister  In case you missed my post last week, my daughter's first book is now available on Smashwords. You can download it FREE on Smashwords or Barnes and Noble. The book is also available on iBooks, but I can't link to it.
  2. Editing  I'm working on a rather large client edit this month. I see lots of hazelnut coffee in my future. :)
  3. Kelly's Coven Giveaway  I'm running another giveaway exclusive to my street team, Kelly's Coven. The prizes are pretty awesome too. If you want to join my street team and get in on this, you can request to join the FB group here.
  4. After Loving You Preorder on B&N  I didn't have the preorder link for B&N during the cover reveal, but I have it now. If you need the book on Nook, you can preorder it here.
  5. e-ARCs for After Loving You  If you signed up to read and post an honest review of After Loving You, you should have your e-ARC by now. If you haven't signed up but want to read and review the book, you can still sign up here.
  6. Announcement Coming Wednesday  I'm making an announcement right here on Wednesday. Make sure you stop back to hear my news.
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

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24. Writer Wednesday: Going Indie

I recently made a big decision for my writing career. I've decided to go indie. Why now after I've had many books traditionally published? To be honest, I've been burned too many times in this industry. I know as writers we aren't supposed to talk about this, but I'm going to anyway. I've been burned by both publishers. And it hurts. Really hurts. As writers we put our dreams in the hands of others and sometimes that works out great. I've had some really great experiences. Fantastic support and more than I've ever dreamed possible.

But that isn't always the case. Sometimes your dreams are shattered by the people you thought were going to help you succeed. I will not be naming names because that isn't the point of this post and I choose to focus on those who have helped me succeed and for whom I'm forever grateful. The point of the post is that I finally realized I have to do what's best for me, and right now, that's going indie. I want control over my career. Yes, it's a lot of work. A LOT! But I've worked in this industry long enough that I've been involved in each aspect of publishing, and I believe I'm ready to take on this challenge. And it will be a challenge. I have no doubt about that.

Does this mean I'll never seek a traditional deal again? Of course not. I've learned not to say "never" because it's like tempting the devil. ;) But for now, I'm going indie and I'm really excited about it.

What decision have you made lately that was tough but for the betterment of your career?

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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25. Friday Feature: Tangled Lines

Today I'm happy to share a Leap Books, Seek title I had the pleasure of editing. Take a look at Tangled Lines by Bonnie Doerr.

A string of islands, a knot of criminals, and two teens to untie it. 

High school changes everything for Kenzie Ryan and Angelo Sanchez—especially their relationship. After spending all summer cracking crimes against endangered wildlife in Big Pine Key, Florida, now they barely see each other. Angelo hangs out with a Porsche-driving quarterback and a stunning local “Conch princess” and Kenzie struggles with being a newbie among the Key West cliques. 

But high school drama gets overshadowed when horrific numbers of pelicans are found tortured near the islands where they live. Kenzie begs Angelo to help stop the slaughter, but he refuses until a stunning family secret is revealed. 

When a Sanchez Fish House employee falls under suspicion, the list of suspects explodes, and the discovery of illegal activity exposes Angelo and Kenzie to the same deadly risk faced by the pelicans they are trying to save... 

Bonnie J. Doerr, nature lover and gardener, grew up in western Maryland. Since leaving home, she has lived in eight of the United States. Degrees in reading education, combined with a brief post as a science teacher, led her to write ecological adventure/mysteries. Years of teaching and living in the Florida Keys provided irresistible material. Her books celebrate caring, involved, "green" teens who take action with attitude and a touch of romance. Her work has been honored by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) with a grant for its use in environmental education and has been included in Milkweed Editions literary field guides. She now lives in a log cabin in North Carolina. Island Sting, was released in January 2010 by Leap Books,LLC and was EPIC's 2011 eBook Award winner for outstanding children's book. Stakeout, second in her ecological adventure/mystery series, was a 2011 summer release and one of six finalists for the 2012 YA Green Earth award. Tangled Lines, third in the series, was released August of 2016.

Website: http://www.bonniedoerrbooks.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorbonniejdoerr

*Want your YA, NA, or MG book featured on my blog? Contact me here and we'll set it up.

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