Bookish News

Happy Thanksgiving, if you’re celebrating this week’s holiday here in the U.S.A.

I am happy to report this round of book three’s revisions are complete and the manuscript is off to get its first outside feedback.

*Gulp*

It’s always a time filled with anticipation mixed with excitement and dread. Ha! But to keep my mind off of that, I’ve dived into a new secret project. I am so excited about it and can’t wait to share it with you all. (Of course, dear readers, there will be a tiniest hint or two in my next newsletter.) I had hoped to be able to knock out the first draft this November, but we shall see. There has just been too much going on.

Such as the Ladies of Spec Facebook Party!!!! Next week Thursday y’all! Will you come? The evening promises to be full of bookish fun and prizes. And you may even catch a glimpse of yours truly singing off-key or a hole bag of oreos disappear or Ralene Burke doused in ice water. Stop by the event page for more details!

Also, be watching the cyber world for tons of bookish deals. Due to life, I did not get my info gathered in time to submit to these organized events, but stop by and check them out. There is something for everyone!

And for the holidays, Secrets Kept will be .99. So if you haven’t had a chance to read the book, now will be a good time to dive into the trilogy. Book three will be coming next year!! Summer/Fall, still a little early to select an actual date, not that I don’t have one in my head. 😀

Hope you all have a great rest of the week! Any special plans for the upcoming holidays?

Categories: Just for Fun, Love of Reading, Nälu, Writer's Journey | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

New Release: Marked by Fate

Howdy readers!

I’m popping in from under book three’s revisions (less than 80 pages to go!!) to share with you all this new release.

MARKED BY FATE

The cover is gorgeous. There’s more than 20 science-fiction and fantasy novels in this set, AND it’s only $0.99 this week only. But that’s not all! Have you heard of augmented reality?

I was blown away by what the publisher created. I just had to share it with you all. Read on and you’ll see what I’m talking about!

From Amazon:

Marked by Fate is now enhanced with Augmented Reality! Read, Watch, Listen. The new ultimate reading experience!

Step into adventure with Marked By Fate; the ultimate reading experience. Be immersed in twenty-six fantasy & science fiction worlds with state of the art Augmented Reality technology. Read, listen, and watch bonus content inside to bring the characters and story to life around you.

Enjoy the added features of this special edition, which allow you to enjoy bonus content right from your reading device. See character artwork. Listen to your story’s soundtrack. Watch book trailers and bonus videos. Experience behind the scenes like never before, thanks to Augmented Reality technology. Immersive Fantasy™; bringing fantasy worlds to life.

25 COMPLETE SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY NOVELS BY 26 BESTSELLING AUTHORS. PLUS, A SPECIAL BONUS NOVELLA.

Embark on fantastic journeys through magical realms, dystopian lands, and faraway galaxies in this exciting collection of fantasy & science fiction novels brought to you by some of today’s hottest authors. Encounter werewolves, robots, angels, time travelers, shifters, and more in this action-packed box set that will leave you breathless.

Find it on Amazon.

***

Alright, back to work! Hopefully, you all will be hearing from me very soon! 😀

 

Categories: Love of Reading | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Book Haul & Facebook Party!

Happy Wednesday!

At least, I hope so! Today, I start back up at our local school as a special needs teacher’s aide, but the kiddos won’t start until next week. We have a whole week to get ready for the new school year. Here’s to 2017-2018!

And to finishing book three. I’m more than halfway through marking it up and will commence applying, revising, cutting and polishing very soon. Already, I have characters and story worlds clamoring for attention, which may or may not have influenced my book haul from Realm Makers this year.

Million Dollar Outlines by David Farland. I hope to be able to apply this and everything I’ve learned from him on my next project. 🙂 If you’re a writer, check out his awesome newsletter. If you’re a reader, check out his plethora of books!

The Crossover Alliance Anthology, Volume 1. I had the opportunity to meet David N. Alderman of the Crossover Alliance, a small press specializing in edgy, Christian fiction. He’s a great guy and had a great time chatting with him.

The Author Collector by Teddi Deppner. I think I have a problem. I’ve been in such a rut in regards to reading and watching movies. Lately, I’ve been drawn only to stories and shows that center around authors such as Murder, She Wrote and Memoirs of a True Assassin, which was enjoyable by the way. So it was no wonder why The Author Collector caught my eye. That, and I’ve been collecting ideas for a fantasy mystery series that is begging to be written. Plus Teddi is an amazing woman and the brain behind the SpecFicCollective (awesome resource for writers, go through the Archives!) and the Christian SpecFic Reader, a hub for blogs by Christian fans of Speculative Fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, horror, and all their subgenres). And she knows how to rock the costumes. 😀 I can’t wait to dig into this book.

And last, but definitely not least.

The Beast of Talesend by Kyle Robert Shultz. THIS! This book was everything that I had been searching for for the past couple of years. A detective, fairy tales, mystery. And yes, I did read the Sister’s Grimm Detective series. You see, I have this story world and characters that came to me several years ago, combining my two favorite loves mystery and fantasy, with a connection to our world and fairy tales. So we shall see! That said, The Beast of Talesend did not disappoint and I cannot wait to read the sequel! You can learn more about Kyle and his books on his website here.

Which brings us to the Ladies of Spec End of Summer Book Bash!

I loved The Beast of Talesend so much that I had to convince the Ladies of Spec that we just had to invite him to be one of our special guests for our upcoming Facebook party.

And we have another awesome guest joining us, Bethany Jennings, who I finally got to meet in person at Realm Makers! This lady has just astounded me as I’ve followed her online. From letting go of a dream to discovering new ones and watching her bloom online. She is an editor, author, and artist. Stop be her website to learn more about her awesome t-shirt designs and her latest books.

The evening promises lots of fun, book talk, prizes and more. So I hope you’ll be able to join us and don’t forget to invite your friends!

Oh, and we’re reading Dragon Lyric in Spec Haven right now! So if you’d love to join us, hop on over to Facebook and join the community! 

Have I shared about Spec Haven yet? If not, I will!

Until next time!

Categories: Love of Reading | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Realm Makers & Beyond!

Saying farewell to Realm Makers 2017!

Hey you guys!

How is your summer going?

Well, mine will be over with in eight days. I’m trying not to hyperventilate, so we won’t talk about that.

If you’ve followed me via Instagram or Twitter, you’ll know that my family and I have just returned from an epic adventure. Two weeks worth of sight-seeing and driving forever in Ms. Hedwig through epic landscapes consisting of deserts and mountains and monsoons. And the kids did amazing. So did Ms. Hedwig.

First, Realm Makers. If you are a writer/wanting to write and love all things speculative fiction, then this conference is for you. This year was amazing and I can’t wait to apply everything that I’ve learned. And I got to meet Mary Weber! And James L. Rubart, Ted Dekker, and Robert Liparulo. Not to mention connecting with fellow authors and lovers of books.

These guys are such troopers!

Why is this important? Because it helps propel me forward in my writing journey and getting book three to you all as soon as I can. Plus all the good advice on writing and life. There is so much I’d love to highlight, but it would take too long today. Watch for future spotlight posts on creative endeavors and some of the awesome folks I met. Unfortunately, I didn’t take pictures like I should have. I was just so in the moment, I forgot. Oops! Now I’m kicking myself because I can’t share any with you. So you’ll have to scour social media with the hashtag #realmmakers2017. You’ll find a bunch. 🙂

But Realm Makers was only part of the trip. My family and I visited the Hoover Dam, the Grand Canyon, Meteor Crater, Roswell’s UFO Museum, Carlsbad Cavern, the kids got to dip their toes in Lake Tahoe, and we got to meet up with friends we hadn’t seen in 17 years! And we celebrated 15 years of marriage! If you want to see pictures of our adventures out west, visit my Instagram profile. There were just too many awesome pics (of landscapes and not of people. 😛 ) to be able to share here.

Pictures cannot capture the epicness!

Well, that brings us today. The kids are registered for school, school supplies have been bought, can’t say the same about the clothes, but we are as prepared as we can be for this next season in our lives.

I take that back. I’m not prepared at all. 😮

But I will be making strides in the next couple of days.

I’m about halfway through reading and marking up book three. I hope to have a title for you all soon! And there is another Ladies of Spec Facebook party in the works! End of Summer Book Bash! Join us for some bookish fun, special guests, and giveaways.

That’s all I have time for. Off to make dinner and finish unpacking. Hoping to dig into book three tonight. 🙂

Now that summer is drawing to a close, what are you most looking forward to this fall?

Categories: Just for Fun, Life's Adventures, Life's Journey, Writer's Journey | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

Cover Reveal: Alara’s Call

Happy Friday!

Today, we have another cover reveal! Kristen Stieffel’s debut novel, Alara’s Call. So without further ado:

ALARA’S CALL

Tales are often told of heroes who fulfill ancient prophecies. Alara’s Call is the tale of a woman
who gives new ones.

Alara sees visions of other’s futures, but never her own.

A young clergywoman with a fiery passion for her Telshan faith, she has been assigned to a
mission abroad but longs to lead a congregation in her homeland. Her father, the prime
minister, jeopardizes her dream and her safety when he coerces her into what he calls a
diplomatic mission.

But it’s a ruse.

The trip is meant to end with her marriage to the crown prince of a foreign nation, where
members of Alara’s faith are persecuted and women oppressed. All for a trade agreement
her father is desperate to enact.

But her mentor intervenes and takes Alara to Dorrel, the suitor she left behind. They
believe they are safe, but foreign soldiers are under orders to bring Alara to the king’s
palace…by any means necessary.

Sounds exciting, eh?

About the Author

Kristen Stieffel is a freelance editor and writer who specializes in speculative fiction.
Although she edits projects in varied genres for both the general market and the Christian submarket, she is a novelist at heart. Member of the Editorial Freelancers Association and Christian Editor Connection, mentor with Word Weavers International, and on the planning committee for Realm Makers, Kristen stays busy doing what she loves most. She is also the associate editor of Havok, a flash-fiction magazine focused on science fiction and fantasy.
Visit www.KristenStieffel.com to learn more about this many-faceted author.

 

Find her on Social Media

Website
Blog 
Amazon Author
Facebook
Twitter
Goodreads
Pinterest

Categories: Love of Reading | Tags: | 4 Comments

Cover Reveal: Children of the Forgotten

Hello adventurers!

Today I join in revealing the cover to a fellow Realm Makers author’s debut novel.

CHILDREN OF THE FORGOTTEN

by Charles Franklin

In a post-apocalyptic world, most people by age thirty have succumbed to The Sickness, a mysterious deadly illness. But the Sickness is not the only enemy for Collin Mann’s city. Hordes of deranged killers live in the hills around it. With few trained protectors, the future of the little city looks bleak.

Collin, fifteen years old, buries those the Sickness consumes. Slight and awkward, he shuns warrior training, avoiding the example of his big brother and guardian.

When killers attack at the watering hole, he’s called to step forward and defend. Instead, he freezes.

He’s ashamed. His people need him to fight. Can he do it? Or would a clumsy person like himself make any difference in the battle for existence?

***

Sounds cool, right? If you’d like to delve into his world now, he has a short story prequel available on Amazon, or you can get it free by signing up to his newsletter.

A SEARCH FOR BLISS

In a secluded, post-apocalyptic city, a guardian is laid to rest. Upon his death, his pupil is named as his successor, but Arik Martin does not believe he is ready.

When a girl is taken by bloodthirsty killers in the hills, Arik must suppress his rage at his mentor’s death and lead a rescue party.

Can he save the girl and bring her home? Or will his recklessness result in more lives lost?

About the Author:

Charles was born and raised in Texas. From there, he joined the United States Army and has traveled the world. Along the way, he saw the most beautiful set of eyes he had ever seen. They belonged to a girl … and he married her right away. Twenty years later, they have three children and are finally headed back home to Texas for good.

Upon retiring from the Army after 23 years, Charles will continue to serve others as a teacher in the town he grew up in. When he’s not in the classroom, or spending time with his family, Charles writes stories about faith, love, hope, and adventure. 

His debut novel, Children of the Forgotten: The Anistemi Book I, will release in August and he has already begun work on the second book in the trilogy. Charles is also writing an action thriller, and has begun outlining another series set in the Anistemi world. 

Categories: Love of Reading | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Progress Report

Hello fellow adventurers!

Life has been quite a whirlwind the past two months. School is out for the summer! We’ve spent a weekend in a cabin with some awesome friends, slit my finger open trying to skip slate over a river, hiked, played putt-putt golf, and learned some new games while Catan sat forlorn in the corner. We’ll make it up to you, Settlers, we promise!

I’ve finished coloring a second graphic novel for a publisher. It was amazing and bittersweet. I loved doing it, but I don’t see how I can continue while working full-time at the school and write.

Speaking of writing, book three is coming along nicely! I’ve printed it out and have started reading through it and making notes. I’ve been a bit slower with it, since the graphic novel had my entire attention. But my goal is to be done reading through it and applying the revisions by the end of summer. A lofty goal? Possibly.

Why?

Because Realm Makers!

I am so excited to be able to go to Realm Makers this year, a writer’s conference for those of us who write about the fantastical, if you haven’t heard of it. We are busily getting ready for that. So many things to do before we leave. Eighteen hours of staff development, purging the kids’ rooms (and the entire house!), which is what I am working on right now, plus back-to-school shopping, and finishing my costume!

The list just keeps going.

Not to mention, revising book three. Which still needs a title! I have a working title, but I’m not sold on it yet.

So how about you? Do you have any plans for the summer?

Whatever you have planned or don’t, I do hope you have a great summer!

 

Categories: Life's Adventures | Tags: , | 6 Comments

The FINAL Fairy Tale Contest!

Greetings fellow adventurers!

I’ve dug myself from under the crazy mess of what was May to share with you this exciting opportunity. If you’re a writer or ever thought of writing or know someone who loves to write, this post is for you. Anne Elisabeth Stengl is doing her fourth and final creative writing contest. Are you ready for it?

FIVE POISONED APPLES

Yep, Snow White. So dust off your laptops, get your thinking caps on, and get thee to writing! For more information on how to enter, click here to visit the contest page.

And now for a close up of that lovely cover! What do you think?

Cover design was done by JULIA POPOVA, whose website is here.

So, are you gonna go for it?

Categories: Contests, Creative Expressions, Love of Reading | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

Typing THE END

Happy Monday!

If you follow me on other social media sites or if you have signed up for my newsletter, you will know what I’m talking about. Last Thursday I typed THE END for book three of the Hidden Dagger trilogy. It’s a second first draft, if that makes any sense. I was doing a complete rewrite from the original story, and I am done. Now I’m diving into revisions. It should go quicker, but I definitely have my work cut out for me. Ha!

Other newsy things…

Darkened Hope is one of the semi-finalists for the Alliance Award, Realm Maker’s reader’s choice award. Eep! Thank you all for nominating it! I am honored to be listed among such awesome books. Now it’s time to rate them and see which ones become a finalist. So readers, let your voices be heard! Head on over to Realm Makers and learn how. 

Again, thank you!!!

Hope you have a great week!

 

 

Categories: Nälu, Writer's Journey | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Songkeeper Blog Tour: S

Happy Monday!

I am excited to share this continuing adventure with you all! Gillian Bronte Adams is celebrating a book anniversary with an awesome book tour where each day we learn a bit more about the world of the Songkeeper Chronicles and there’s a giveaway!

So without further ado, please welcome Ms. Adams!

Explore Leira Blog Tour: S is for Songkeepers, Songlings, and the Shantren

Thanks, Jennette, for hosting me here and helping me celebrate the (almost) one year book birthday for Songkeeper! It is the second book in the Songkeeper Chronicles, which tells the story of a girl who can hear the song that created the world. If this is your first encounter with the blog tour, we are continuing a series of alphabet posts looking at the world and characters and magical creatures of the Songkeeper Chronicles (follow the tour at gillianbronteadams.com and find a list of all the stops at #exploreleira tour). And we have an awesome giveaway that you can enter below!

Today, we’re looking at the letter …

S is for Songkeepers, Songlings, and the Shantren

I am feverishly excited about this post because I get to tell you all a little more about the “magical” system in the world of the Songkeeper Chronicles. Whether it was reading the creation of the worlds in Tolkien’s Silmarillion and Lewis’s Magician’s Nephew, or reading spellbound about the contest between Felagund and Sauron, or listening to epic soundtracks from my favorite movies, the idea of powerful music has always intrigued me.

So much so that it bled into my writing. In the world of Leira, the Song of Emhran, the Master Singer, brought the world into existence at the beginning of time. Afterwards, the Song flowed through a river than ran throughout the entire land. It was tended by Keepers who granted access to those who wished to immerse themselves in the presence of the Song. Within the waters of the river, Leirans found life and healing and lifted their voices in harmony with the master melody.

[Gundhrold’s] eyes closed and his voice assumed a rhythmic cadence until Birdie could scare tell if he were speaking or singing. “It is said that long ago, before the stars burned or the sun awakened, the Master Singer wove the fabric of the world through the threads of a Song and bound the melody within a river that flowed throughout the entire land of Leira. It became a source of life and of healing to all the people and creatures who lived here, and the music sang in every fiber of their being.”

Songkeeper

But eventually the river was lost. The flow ceased. The Song fell silent.

And only five broken notes of the master melody remained, coursing through the hearts and individual voices of every living thing in Leira.

Soon after, the first Songkeepers appeared, tasked with keeping the memory of the Song alive.

SONGKEEPERS

Those who have received the full gifting of a Songkeeper are able to hear three different types of melody—the broken five-noted individual melodies, the grand sweeping Song of the Master Singer, and a discordant melody that marks those who have turned their backs upon the master melody.

In the Song of the Master Singer, Songkeepers hear the voice of Emhran calling to them, summoning them to himself. The Song is not controlled by the Songkeepers. They cannot unleash its power at will. Rather, when summoned by the Song, a Songkeeper yields to the prompting, and the power of the Master Singer pours through them.

The power of the Song manifests itself in different ways, depending on the Songkeeper, empowering him or her as Emhran deems fit. The melody brings healing. It is life-giving, and yet it rains terror upon the hearts of those bound to the cursed bloodstone of the Shantren. Because the Song once flowed through a river, water bears the strongest memory of the melody and responds in might to its summons.

The storm swallowed her voice, but the Song rose from the depths in answer. Strong. Rich. Powerful. It swept over her, and for once, it did not draw back. She raised her chained hands as the music welled within her chest and then burst from her open mouth.

The released melody swirled around her, and she felt its touch like that of a friend long missed. Thicker than amassing storm clouds, it gathered at her fingertips and grew. Building. Summoning force.

Songkeeper

Ordinarily, only one with the full gifting of a Songkeeper is raised up at a time, and yet, there may be many who possess a partial gifting. In Songkeeper, we learn that the council of griffins was formed to protect the Songkeepers and determine between full and partial giftings. Those with partial giftings were called Songlings.

Gundhrold’s gaze flickered to the opposite wall, but one glance at his eyes told her that he was seeing something more than gray, splintered wood. “For centuries, my kind have served as Protectors for the Songkeepers and for anyone who showed promise of possessing their abilities—Songlings, we called them.”

Songkeeper

SONGLINGS

Songlings may possess any number of hints of the full gifting. They might be gifted to hear the individual melodies or to discern the discordant melody. They might be gifted to understand the speech of animals and converse with all living creatures. A few might even be gifted with the skill of healing. But Songlings are rarely gifted to hear the voice of Emhran or grasp the full grandeur of the Song.

Oftentimes, one who seems to possess the gifting of a Songling will come into their full gifting in time to be trained by the previous Songkeeper before his or her passing. Birdie’s grandmother, Auna, came into the full gifting during the time of the Songkeeper Artair and was trained by him before he was taken by the Khelari at the massacre of Drengreth.

SHANTREN

“Know this though, little Songkeeper, there are others with powers in this world, who are sworn to the Takhran’s service. It is his hand that bestows their powers, his hand that maneuvers them like playthings. They are called the Shantren … and they are dangerous.”

Songkeeper

The order of the Shantren were formed to serve the Takhran and oppose the Songkeepers and Songlings. They wear the talav, or bloodstone, a necklace with a scarlet teardrop shaped crystal, through which they are gifted abilities that the Takhran twists to his own ends. He promises them freedom and control, and so they willingly accept the chain of their slavery. For once the talav is set in place, no knife or act of human will can remove it, save only the Songkeeper’s blade.

So there you have it, a little glimpse into the magical system of the world of Leira!

Can you picture a world where music is powerful?

About the Books

Orphan’s Song

Her solo is a death sentence.

Deep within the world of Leira flows a melody that was sung at the beginning of time by Emhran, the Master Singer. Now it is broken, buried, forgotten. But in each generation, a Songkeeper arises to uphold the memory of the Song against those who want it silenced forever.

When Birdie first hears the Song coming from her own mouth, her world shatters. She is no longer simply an orphan but the last of a hunted people. Forced to flee for her life, she must decide whom to trust—a traveling peddler, a streetwise thief, or a mysterious creature who claims to know her past.

With enemies at her heels and war threatening to tear her homeland apart, Birdie soon discovers an overwhelming truth: the fate of Leira may hinge on one orphan’s Song.

Songkeeper

War ravages Leira and the Song has fallen silent.

Freed from the hold of a slave ship, Birdie, the young Songkeeper, and Ky, a street-wise thief, emerge to a world at war. Hordes of dark soldiers march across Leira, shadowed by whispers of plague and massacres, prompting Ky to return to his besieged home city in hopes of leading his fellow runners to safety.

Desperate to end the fighting, Birdie embarks on a dangerous mission into the heart of the Takhran’s fortress. Legend speaks of a mythical spring buried within and the Songkeeper who will one day unleash it to achieve victory. Everyone believes Birdie is the one, but the elusive nature of the Song and rumors of other gifted individuals lead her to doubt her role. Unleashing the spring could defeat the Takhran once and for all, but can she truly be the Songkeeper when the Song no longer answers her call?

Check out the links below for a place to purchase the books.

Amazon: Orphan’s Song, Songkeeper

Barnes and Nobles: Orphan’s Song, Songkeeper

And before you leave, don’t forget to enter the giveaway! One lucky winner will take home a copy of Orphan’s Song, Songkeeper, and a gorgeous handmade mug. Two lucky winners will take home copies of Songkeeper! Enter through the Rafflecopter below and be sure to visit www.gillianbronteadams.com to continue following the blog tour. You can earn new entries for each post that you visit along the way. Winners will be announced after April 15th.

Giveaway!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author

GILLIAN BRONTE ADAMS is a sword-wielding, horse-riding, coffee-loving speculative fiction author from the great state of Texas. During the day, she manages the equestrian program at a youth camp. But at night, she kicks off her boots and spurs, pulls out her trusty laptop, and transforms into a novelist. She is the author of Orphan’s Song, Songkeeper, and Out of Darkness Rising. Visit Gillian online at her blog, Twitter, or Facebook page.

 

Categories: Giveaway & More, Guest Posts, Love of Reading | Tags: , , , | 9 Comments