Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Autumn/Halloween Countdown Blitz Day 2

Jaclyn is an Idaho farm girl who grew up loving to read. She developed a love for writing at a young age and published her first book in 2013. She met her husband, Steve, at BYU, and they have six happy, crazy children who encourage her to keep writing. After owning a bookstore and running away to have adventures in Australia, they settled back down in their home in Utah. When Jaclyn isn’t herding her kids to various activities, she serves on the board for her local arts agency, runs a writing workshop, and stays up late writing books in various genres.

Jaclyn’s Young Adult books include The Luck Series, Lost in a Fairy Tale series, Magicians of the Deep, and Two Masters. 

Gwen's family had only one rule—stay out of Grandma's garden. And if it wasn’t for her annoying cousin, she never would have broken it. Everything seems fine until she pulls an ancient book from the old well inside.

And pays for it.

A dark magic is unleashed from its prison, and Gwen becomes its new host. Now, not only does she have to learn to use her own magic, she must also keep the dark magic from taking over her soul. Some rules are made to be broken. But breaking this one may just destroy the world. 


Q&A With the Author:

1. What is your favorite Autumn Time activity?   Sports with my kids (I have one in football, one in volleyball, one in Marching Band, and two in soccer!) and watching the leaves change. And of course, decorating for Halloween!

2. What is one of your writing quirks? I have to have some kind of music in the background or I can't write.

3. Which of your books was your favorite to write? And why?  My Luck Series will always have my heart because Megan is just so darn fun. But Two Masters was probably my favorite. It took more out of me to write and it was like there was this little voice saying "Hey, don't forget this part!" the whole way through. Which is funny since that's kind of the premise of the story.

4. Who is the person or group of people who most support you in your writing? What have they done for you? Tristi Pinkston has been my person to write with because she helped me get my start with a writing group. IWriteNetwork friends and Sprint Writers Central friends are who have helped me through all of my writing. Answering questions, brainstorming, sprinting, making me write, etc.

5. What is your trick for getting past writer's block? And what advice would you give to others who are struggling?  My biggest thing is just writing anyway. And if I can't write that one, I go to a different book and try that one instead. The longer you wait to write something, the harder it is to get back into it. So just write. You can always edit the blah stuff out of it later!

6. Autumn time has its own set of foods/flavors. What is your favorite Autumn comfort food? Hot chocolate! I'm one of those who actually love candy corns as well. And while I'm not the biggest fan of pumpkin spice, I do like pumpkin pie - for Thanksgiving!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, October 19, 2020

Autumn/Halloween Countdown Blitz Day 1

A graduate of Exeter University, Wendy spent 20 years as a teacher of French, Latin and Classical studies before a change of career led her to writing children's fiction. Currently residing in Abu Dhabi, she lives with her husband and beautiful Tonkinese cat.  

Wendy's ""Shadows from the Past"" time-travel adventures, featuring 3 children and a rather special cat called Max, are aimed at the Middle Grade age group. This award-winning series also includes several shorter novellas that see Max the talking Tonkinese cat undertaking solo missions. Now working on the 18th book in the series, ""The Shadow of the Shifting Sands"", Wendy hopes that her love of history, myth and legend will rub off on her young readers as she takes them on a magical mystery tour through the past. 

 In his fifth solo mini-adventure, Max the talking Tonkinese cat, the feline hero of the SHADOWS FROM THE PAST series travels back in time to the mid-seventeenth century. 

He doesn’t understand how this has happened until he recognises his surroundings and realises it isn't the first time he’s been to this place. Why has he been brought to this tumbledown cottage in the middle of nowhere? All is about to be revealed…

In 17th century Essex, at a time when most people believed in witchcraft, the name Matthew Hopkins was enough to strike fear into the heart of many a woman who lived alone with only a pet cat for company… for Hopkins was the Witchfinder General.  

The 15th book in the Shadows from the Past series takes the time-travelling foursome back to the year 1646. It isn’t Max’s first visit to the village of Mistley Thorn, but this time his friends Jemima, Joe and Charlie are by his side.
Their mission is to bring an end to Hopkins’ campaign of terror. Will they succeed, or might this prove to be their most dangerous challenge yet? " 

Q&A With the Author:

1. What is your favorite Autumn Time activity?

Going for long walks in the countryside and seeing the autumnal colours of the trees, with their leaves turning all shades of yellow, gold and red – one of nature’s real wonders. I also love the smell of bonfire smoke – it takes me right back to my childhood. In the UK, we celebrate Guy Fawkes on November 5th with bonfires and fireworks.

2. What is one of your writing quirks?

It’s not so much a writing quirk, but more of a post-writing quirk. When I’m reading through what I’ve written, usually at the end of a chapter and again when I’ve finished the book, I always read it aloud to see how it sounds. Also, I find that typos and errors jump out more readily that way.

3. Which of your books was your favorite to write? And why?

Two of my “Max’s Adventures” spring to mind: Max’s Midnight Adventure, because it made me laugh as I was writing about my funny feline hero’s escapade in the attic one night and, more recently, Max’s Royal Adventure. My favourite uncle, who loved reading my books, had recently passed away. He was especially fond of Max, so I decided to write this book especially for him – it’s dedicated to him, but I’m sad that he never got the chance to read it.

4. Who is the person or group of people who most support you in your writing? What have they done for you?

My husband is my biggest supporter but also my most ruthless critic! He does a great job of editing my work. In addition, I’m lucky to belong to a group of fellow authors who seem to enjoy my stories and who are hugely supportive, supplying vital encouragement and advice. 

5. What is your trick for getting past writer's block? And what advice would you give to others who are struggling?

Like many other authors, I struggled to write during the Covid-19 virus lockdown earlier this year. I desperately wanted to make a start on my latest book in the series, but just couldn’t make any headway and found it really tough-going. It was frustrating, to say the least, but I decided I couldn’t waste this valuable time and forced myself to sit down at my laptop every single day. To begin with, I only managed a few lines at a time, sometimes a paragraph, but I persevered and, eventually, the creative juices began to flow… and I’m pleased to say I got there in the end. The Kindle version is already available on Amazon and the paperback version will be published soon. The Shadow of the Great Fire is a perfect pandemic read, set during the last episode of Bubonic Plague to affect England in 1666. 


So, my advice would be to try to write a little each day, even if  the ideas aren’t flowing naturally and it feels as if you’re wading through treacle. When you read it through the following day, you might want to delete some of what you’ve written, but I genuinely believe it kickstarts the creative processes! 

6. Autumn time has its own set of foods/flavors. What is your favorite Autumn comfort food?

I love pumpkin soup – it’s real comfort food. I’m also partial to roasted chestnuts, which remind me of my father who is sadly no longer with us. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Heart Strings

Title: Heart Strings
Author: Melanie Moreland
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: October 12, 2020

A woman drowning in sorrow. Invisible.
The man that sees it all. Sees her.
The only thing that gets Charlotte Prescott through the day is the haunting eyes and magnetic voice that uplifts her in the subway station every evening.
All Montgomery Logan wants to do is ease the pain of the woman he feels a strange, protective draw to. He serenades her from afar, knowing their worlds will never intersect.
Until the day they do.
And everything changes.
Will their differences make them stronger or tear them apart?

"Music to soothe the soul...A connection that was felt by both, A smile that set MY heart tingling. <3” Chele, Goodreads
"I definitely would like to see made into full length stories because they were so engaging from Sydney Logan, Melanie Moreland, and Jo Richardson. ”  Shannon, Goodreads

NYT/WSJ/USAT international bestselling author Melanie Moreland, lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her beloved husband of twenty-seven-plus years and their rescue cat, Amber. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them. 
While seriously addicted to coffee, and highly challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties, and also enjoys traveling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip. 
Melanie loves stories, especially paired with a good wine, and enjoys skydiving (free falling over a fleck of dust) extreme snowboarding (falling down stairs) and piloting her own helicopter (tripping over her own feet.) She's learned happily ever afters, even bumpy ones, are all in how you tell the story.
Melanie is represented by Flavia Viotti at Bookcase Literary Agency. For any questions regarding subsidiary or translation rights please contact her at  flavia@bookcaseagency.com