Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Character ChitChat: Malcolm Blackwood

It's me again and I've got a quest today. Malcolm stepped out of the Star Crossed Series for a few moments and sat down for a bit of a character chitchat. I grabbed him just before the start of Just Beyond Daybreak. Meredith has yet to came back into his life. So lets see what the youngest Blackwood was up to before the adventures began.

Hi, Malcolm, how you doing?

Malcolm Blackwood isn't a shy person and answers with a confidant grin. "I'm good. Just kicking back in Magic Town for now. What's this all about?"

Just a little interview for... a magical tutor job. (Yeah, we'll roll with that.)

He sits back in his chair, a little more comfortable. "Well, I've got a pretty full schedule already. You'll have to make a new teaching job worth my time."

I heard you only had one student at the moment. That must be really hard on you. You did grow up in a mansion with access to just about anything you could want. Nice schools and social events rubbing elbows with the high born. You are, after all, high born yourself.

Malcolm fixes me with a cold stare and his blue eyes go hard. "I don't think that has anything to do with this, but yes, I grew up well. It allowed me to learn all the magical skills the small families pay dearly for. So, if you're looking for a classically trained tutor, you've found the right person."

That's very true, but why would a Blackwood be slumming it in Magic Town? Your family is one of the wealthiest and respected families in the magical community.

Letting out a rough laugh, Malcolm shook his head. "We might be a well off family, but it's not worth it. So many rules and standards you have to hold yourself to. If I'd stayed even my marriage would have been arranged by the family. All the old families are the same."

Even the Blackburns, I hear. If I'm not mistaken you moved into Magic Town around the same time marriage arrangements were settled for the oldest Blackburn, Meredith.

He gave a clipped answer. "That family has nothing to do with this."

That's right. The Blackwoods and the Blackburns don't get along, do they? Even though you went to school with Meredith and are the same age, you two really don't like to mix. Why is that? What's with this family feud?

Malcolm shifted in his seat. "It's as old as dirt. That's all I really know about it, but none of us really get along. I suppose it's an issue for the heads of the families now. I'm out of it."

What if Meredith showed up with a peace offering? Or the Blackburn family was in trouble? Would that change anything for you?

Abruptly standing, Malcolm pulled a candle out. "You know. I don't need another student and you're asking way too many questions. Peace."

With a strike of a match he's gone and our chitchat is over. I guess at that point he was still uncomfortable with the topic.

Find out why in Just Beyond Daybreak and keep an eye out for the next story in the Star Crossed Series, Caught by Nightfall.

Just Beyond Daybreak

When the source of her family’s magical energy and life force is stolen, Meredith Blackburn is left with little choice, but to search out the best magical tracker she knows. Unfortunately Malcolm Blackwood is more than just a tracker, he is also a man who captivates Meredith’s thoughts.

She strolled into Malcolm’s life with a job that he didn’t want, but instantly he regretted turning her away. Now, with his own family relics in danger, Malcolm finds himself unable to leave Meredith behind.

Can they save the Blackburn bloodline? Or will family ties tear them apart?

Available @ Amazon in print or ebook.

That's all for today.

Peace and Love.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

#8Sunday: Witch Hunt (April)

Sorry it's late. Wind knocked out the internet. So I'm not on the link links, but you lovely readers should still check out those great entries.

I really enjoyed the Weekend Writing Warriors hop, #8Sunday. So, I'm here again sharing a snippet from my first novel, Witch Hunt.

Once you get a taste of this paranormal romance hop on over to the main website and visit some of the other great authors for some sneak peaks at their works too.

Witch Hunt:

Gathering up her courage, Rei tore her gaze from the tanned chest and looked up at the man’s face. He was breathtakingly handsome. His soft golden-brown eyes were fixed on her intently, and the little smile on his face left a small dimple in his cheek. “Where am I?” she asked timidly.

“You’re in my home. I couldn’t leave you out in the forest by yourself. I’ve made some coffee. Come have a cup and eat some breakfast.”

There's 8 sentences and a rather interesting "first" meeting between the leading lady, Rei, and the hero, Aidan.

This snippet was chosen because the publisher, CobbleStone Press will be sending the Saving Grace Saga to print starting this June. I'm super excited about it and just want to yell it from the rooftops. So, I'll be updating on that progress as it goes.

If you can't wait to read Witch Hunt or one of the other two stories in the series they're avilable as eBooks:

Witch Hunt

Nook Store
Cobblestone Press


Fox Hunt

Fire Hunt

That's all for today.

Peace and Love!

Friday, April 13, 2018

#MFRWauthor It's Finally Finished!

I've decided to hit up one of my less visited hops. I'm in love with the 52-week blog challenge and realize that I could never follow through with it, even if I did manage the "New Year New Me".

That aside I am going to try to get back into the swing of doing at least one or two of these a month. Just to get back into the grove of blogging like I should and to share a little bit more about me and my works.

This weeks question is "How I celebrate completing my manuscript" and I felt it might be a great way to break the ice this year.

I've been ahead during CampNaNo this month and have almost completed a sequel to Just Beyond Daybreak, Caught by Nightfall. At least the draft anyway. So how do I celebrate?

When I type in those final words, which are normally "The End" it feels like a long held breath is released and I fall back and stare at the screen for a while. I ask myself "Is it really done?", "Did I leave anything out that I really should have put in?" and then I remind myself that's what read throughs are for.

I typically get take out with my family if I finished during the day. A spread of Chinese food is prefect celebration food in our house. My daughter loves it.

If I finish later in the evening I celebrate with a glass of wine or  apple cider. Then I'll convince the hubby to play a video game with me so I can work out some of the tension that writing built up. He loves video games so it's a win-win.

Then are there are those moments where I celebrate by jumping straight into a great book I've been putting off. I'll read two or three books before returning to the story and doing my read throughs.

Anyway that's my celebration styles. Jump over to some of the other great authors and find out how they celebrate.

Peace and Love!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

April CampNaNoWriMo (2018)

 Participant 2018 - Twitter Header

Camp Time!

I should have announced it already, but I was so excited about the project that I forgot about it. You, lovely readers, have already seen a snippet over the weekend and hopefully are on the edge of your seat for the sequel to my paranormal romance novella, Just Beyond Daybreak.

Caught by Nightfall is yet another adventure for Meredith and Malcolm. They get into a bit of trouble and Malcolm's family, the Blackwoods come into the picture. Remember, these two families have never really gotten along, so there is sure to be some tension.

Along with family issues, these two have to find a way to stop a mystery thief from disturbing the balance of the planet. Lay Lines, a system of energy channels that crisscross Earth, take a front seat in this story and I seriously have to wonder if Meredith has a thing for dragons, as these lines are also known as dragon lines.

Along with the excitement of this story I'm feeling really great because a few more stories with these two have popped into mind and just before Camp started I started jotting down story lines and notes for two other Meredith and Malcolm stories. So, it seems they're getting a series.

The Star Crossed Series is planned and hopefully Caught by Nightfall will be coming soon.

That's all for now.

Peace and Love!

Saturday, April 7, 2018

#8Sunday Caught by Nightfall


This is my first Weekend Writing Warriors post! Here's to finding new friends. This post is the #8Sudnay hop. You'll find 8 sentences below from my current WIP, Caught by Nightfall. Enjoy and remember to hop over to the other great blogs for more snippets!

This Snippet

Before his name could erupt from her lips, Malcolm clasped his hand over her mouth. “Shh. I got you,” he whispered in her ear and instantly some of the terror drained away. 

Carefully pulling his hand away, Malcolm glanced around the corner and Meredith watched his eyes go a little wide. Then he took her hand and started pulling her down deeper into the dark hallway he’d appeared from. “We got to get out of here,” he said quietly.

“No shit,” Meredith hissed as they made a turn. The darkness was so thick she couldn’t really see him, but she knew he was focused on getting as far from that red mass as possible. She wasn’t sure how Malcolm was maneuvering through the hall without his own light, but she was thankful for his lead.

I'm writing Caught by Nightfall for this month's CampNaNoWriMo and it's rolling along great. This is a sequel to my paranormal romance novella, Just Beyond Daybreak. Meredith and Malcolm ended up having quite a few stories left to be told.

Catch up with these two:

https://www.amazon.com/Just-Beyond-Daybreak-J-R-White/dp/1976815967When the source of her family’s magical energy and life force is stolen, Meredith Blackburn is left with little choice, but to search out the best magical tracker she knows. Unfortunately Malcolm Blackwood is more than just a tracker, he is also a man who captivates Meredith’s thoughts. 

She strolled into Malcolm’s life with a job that he didn’t want, but instantly he regretted turning her away. Now, with his own family relics in danger, Malcolm finds himself unable to leave Meredith behind. 

Can they save the Blackburn bloodline? Or will family ties tear them apart?

Available on Amazon in Print or on Kindle!

Visit Weekend Writing Warrior for a list of the 
other great Author Blogs!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

It's a Process

Today I'm going to touch on something I normally do my best to avoid: Book Quality

Don't click away angry just yet. I'm talking about editing.

Whether you self-publish or go through a traditional publisher its vital to polish your story. In fact, most authors, agents and marketers are going to tell you a polished story goes a lot further than a draft.

Everyone is going to have their own process of writing and editing. Some authors do all their editing as they write. Others, like myself, sit through countless read throughs.

My process goes like this:

Writing: While I'm writing the story I often have to go back and read earlier scenes. When I find something wrong I try to fix it or I highlight it for later with a quick note.

Read Through 1: Once the story is finished I'll read it. I do take a few days away from the story before reading it first, but I always read through it. Sometimes out loud and sometimes kicked back with a never ending supply of coffee. Most of what I catch here are plot holes or rough wording.

Hubby Read: Next, the revised story goes to my husband. He's the first one to read what I write and I'm lucky enough to have an honest partner who isn't afraid to point out issues. This also gives me a few more days away from the story.

Read Through 2: After hubby is finished I read over his suggestions and do another read through on my own. Just ONE though. This is the point where I can get stuck in an editing and revising loop. They aren't fun and sometimes hurt the story more than help.

Beta Readers: At long last I reach out to beta readers. Be careful who you ask to read for you. Not all readers are meant to be betas. Find people who will give you usable feed back. Not just stroke your ego or give a one line "It's great" instead of helping find errors.

Read Through 3: Now that the beta readers are finished I go over their suggestions and do another read through. After I may or may not it through an online editing app, such as the Hemingway Editor, to catch small issues. They're great for finding passive voice.

Traditional or Self-Publishing?

Traditional: If this is the path then I put the story aside for the moment and work on the synopsis and query letter. Then off it goes to the publisher for consideration. (Rejection or Celebration to follow)

Self-Publishing: I went this rout with Lost Relic and Just Beyond Daybreak. Hiring a professional editor is the best thing you can do for your story if you're going to self-publish. My go to editing service is Shalamar Media. I have been very happy with the services and they're reasonably priced for what they offer.

Even after all that I still find errors here and there. It happens. Writing is an art form and if you've got a story to tell go on and tell it. Then polish it until it shines and introduce it to the world.

Peace and Love!