Do you get writer’s block? Try this from Shelley Widhalm! 😉
Day: July 21, 2017
“I See London, I See France” by Sarah Mlynowski
“I See London, I See France“
Release Date: July 11, 2017
“This endlessly fun and hugely entertaining romp through Europe had me laughing out loud and reaching for my passport.” —Jennifer E. Smith, author of Windfall
A POPSUGAR Best Young Adult Novel of 2017
Nineteen-year-old Sydney has the perfect summer mapped out. She’s spending the next four and a half weeks traveling through Europe with her childhood best friend Leela. Their plans include Eiffel Tower selfies, eating cocco gelato, and making out with très hot strangers.
Her plans do not include Leela’s cheating ex-boyfriend showing up on the flight to London, falling for the cheating ex-boyfriend’s très hot friend, monitoring her mother’s spiraling mental health via texts, or feeling like the rope in a friendship tug of war.
In this hilarious and unforgettable adventure, New York Times bestselling author Sarah Mlynowski tells the story of a girl learning to navigate secret romances, thorny relationships, and the London Tube. As Sydney zigzags through Amsterdam, Switzerland, Italy, and France, she must learn when to hold on, when to keep moving, and when to jump into the Riviera…wearing only her polka dot underpants.
Sarah Mlynowski is the author of Ten Things We Did (and Probably Shouldn’t Have), Don’t Even Think About It, Bras & Broomsticks, the New York Times bestselling Whatever After books, and more. Her books have been translated into 29 languages and optioned to Hollywood. Sarah has taken many road trips and gotten lost on every one of them.
“The Scarlet Peacock” by David Field
#FREE 7/21/17 Only!
“The Scarlet Peacock“
Genre: Historical Fiction/Biographical
Release Date: June 22, 2017
He was the son of an Ipswich butcher, but he was no ordinary boy.
His precocious intellect earned him a degree from Oxford at the unheard of age of fifteen, and his assumption of holy orders was to have an indelible impact on the status of the Church of Rome in England.
Thomas Wolsey first entered the royal service as chaplain to the aging Henry VII and stayed on as the first choice counselor of his heir, Henry VIII.
Under royal patronage, he rose to be Chancellor of England, Archbishop of York, and Papal legate for life.
But his love of flamboyant display and his acquisition of ostentatious wealth were anathema to the old nobility who resented such success by a mere commoner. Chief among these was his old boyhood enemy Thomas Howard, Duke of Norfolk, who had a potent weapon in his arsenal.
Her name was Anne Boleyn.
Wolsey’s inability to secure the annulment of Henry’s marriage to Katherine of Aragon was the breach in the wall through which Norfolk and his faction poured poison into Henry’s ear.
Wolsey was stripped of most of his offices and retreated in disgrace on a northern pilgrimage from which he was destined not to return alive.
No-one was left to mourn his passing other than his loyal protégé Thomas Cromwell, who vowed revenge on the woman who had been the primary cause of the downfall of one of the ablest clergymen and ambassadors that England would ever know.
This is his story – the highs, the lows, and the treacheries of life at the court of one of England’s most colorful monarchs, seen through the eyes of one of its most tragic victims.
“The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O.: A Novel” by Neal Stephenson, Nicole Galland
“The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O.: A Novell”
By Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland
Genre: Science Fiction/Steampunk/Time Travel
Release Date: June 13, 2017
From bestselling author Neal Stephenson and critically acclaimed historical and contemporary commercial novelist Nicole Galland comes a captivating and complex near-future thriller combining history, science, magic, mystery, intrigue, and adventure that questions the very foundations of the modern world.
When Melisande Stokes, an expert in linguistics and languages, accidentally meets military intelligence operator Tristan Lyons in a hallway at Harvard University, it is the beginning of a chain of events that will alter their lives and human history itself. The young man from a shadowy government entity approaches Mel, a low-level faculty member, with an incredible offer. The only condition: she must sign a nondisclosure agreement in return for the rather large sum of money.
Tristan needs Mel to translate some very old documents, which, if authentic, are earth-shattering. They prove that magic actually existed and was practiced for centuries. But the arrival of the scientific revolution and the Age of Enlightenment weakened its power and endangered its practitioners. Magic stopped working altogether in 1851, at the time of the Great Exhibition at London’s Crystal Palace—the world’s fair celebrating the rise of industrial technology and commerce. Something about the modern world “jams” the “frequencies” used by magic, and it’s up to Tristan to find out why.
And so the Department of Diachronic Operations—D.O.D.O. —gets cracking on its real mission: to develop a device that can bring magic back, and send Diachronic Operatives back in time to keep it alive . . . and meddle with a little history at the same time. But while Tristan and his expanding operation master the science and build the technology, they overlook the mercurial—and treacherous—nature of the human heart.
Written with the genius, complexity, and innovation that characterizes all of Neal Stephenson’s work and steeped with the down-to-earth warmth and humor of Nicole Galland’s storytelling style, this exciting and vividly realized work of science fiction will make you believe in the impossible, and take you to places—and times—beyond imagining.
Neal Stephenson is known for his speculative fiction works, variously categorized as science fiction, historical fiction, maximalism, and cyberpunk. He is the author of the bestselling Reamde, Anathem, the three-volume historical epic the Baroque Cycle as well as Snow Crash, which was named one of Time magazine’s Top 100 All-Time Best English-language Novels. He also writes nonfiction articles about technology in publications such as Wired magazine and has worked part time as an adviser for Blue Origin, a company developing a manned suborbital launch system.
Nicole Galland’s five previous novels are The Fool’s Tale; Revenge of the Rose; Crossed; I, Iago; and Godiva. She writes a cheeky etiquette column for the Martha’s Vineyard Times. She is married to actor Billy Meleady and owns Leuco, a dog of splendid qualities.
Throwback Thursday: What to Do After the First Draft
I needed to read this! Do you?
“Little Queen (The Ùlfrinn Series, Book 2)” by A.C. Melody #Review
“Little Queen (The Ùlfrinn Series, Book 2)”
Author: A.C. Melody
Genre: Erotic Paranormal Romance/Norse Mythology
Release date: July 1, 2017
It’s All About the Romance!
Reyna Daniels and Corbyn Bruschard make an effort to be in a committed relationship, but each is still hindered by their own hidden fears.
However, fear takes a backseat to rage and the need to protect.
Unable to reach good buddy, Jesse (a lone wolf), back in Chicago, Reyna Daniels is worried he’s fallen back in with the wrong crowd. When her Chicago apartment is burglarized and Chicago PD insists Reyna returns for questioning, Corbyn’s spidey senses go into high alert… with good reason.
Corbyn Bruschard is blindsided by a devastating blow during a business venture. As he begins to hunt down the guilty, Corbyn and the entire pack is sent reeling when the still anonymous-evil strikes again… and leaves Reyna on her death bed.
At first glance, it appears the Ùlfrinn are surrounded by enemies determined to wipe them out and Corbyn and his pack have little chance for success. But things—and people—are not as they appear.
Alliances are made—with reluctance—but it may yet be too late.
Corbyn is forced to take a stand when there’s dissension within the pack. He doesn’t want history to repeat itself and another Ùlfrinn is cast out because of pride, but he will not be challenged, especially when it comes to Reyna.
Reyna’s search for Jesse leads her to a secret government agency created for dealing with the supernatural *Waves to Mulder and Scully* which includes a much-too-friendly director, a female agent with an attitude, and Sean Connery, er…I mean Laird McCuine, an alpha even more powerful than Corbyn. (How is this even possible?)
Despite the power plays and intrigue moving the story along, it’s the love story of Corbyn and Reyna which wins the day. Much respect to the destiny of Fated Mates, but these two will settle for nothing less than true love. The relationship is give and take with tiny wins for each along the way. There are ‘squee’ moments to make the reader smile and cheer these two on as they fall in love. The intimate scenes are again graphic but without being overdone. The running dialogue and character internal thoughts keep this about bonding hearts and not just orgasms. The Ùlfrinn and their Norse heritage provide the paranormal, but the Alpha and his Valkyrie bring the romance. *Swoons*
As Reyna’s Ùlfr begins to awaken it doesn’t change her but instead strengthens who she is… who she’s always been. While Reyna has never been anyone’s fool, she begins to sync with her long dormant wolf and finds power which surprises everyone… except Corbyn.
The Norse Mythology runs even deeper in Little Queen, and it is flawless. The mythology is crucial to whether or not Reyna survives, and if the search for the guilty is successful.
There is a book 3 in the Ùlfrinn series, but Little Queen doesn’t leave you hanging off a cliff wanting answers. Major points are nicely tied up and resolved while keeping the mythology alive.
True love, a front yard battle of wolves, a kidnapping, a poisoning, a female agent just asking to have her ass handed to her, ice cream thefts, one woman’s efforts to redefine shopping, Night, Mare, and a succubus.
Yeah, you need to 1-click.
“Conditioned” by Liz Crowe #BlogTour 18+
Author: Liz Crowe
Genre: Erotic Romance
Release Date: July 11, 2017
Hosted by: Buoni Amici Press, LLC.
Book three in the Brewing Passion series
A chance meeting. An improbable connection. An exquisite attraction.
Trent Hettinger’s turbulent formative years transformed him into a cynic—and into a man who realized he required something outside himself to control his temper. Something he found as a Dom—at least for a while. But he allowed himself to trust a woman once and was slapped back into reality with a vengeance and now devotes all his energy into building his real estate empire, raising his teenaged daughter…and avoiding anything resembling authentic attachments.
Melody Rodriguez kept her head down for years—working hard, making her own money, trying to get ahead with every deck stacked against her. She’s determined to move beyond the ugliness that haunts her without anyone’s help. When a mutual friend sets her up with Trent, she’s determined to have some fun with him and move on.A man with nothing left to lose. A woman hiding behind her past. When two lives spent in emotional denial collide, it’s a perfect match—at least on the surface. But neither Trent nor Melody is prepared for the full force of their true feelings, once fate intervenes and blows a cold breeze into their white-hot relationship.
Rated R for language:
“You need to get ready,” Evelyn said. “You only have a few hours.”
I stared at the computer screen. “I’m not going.”
“The hell you aren’t.” She slapped the laptop closed. We were in the office she’d assigned to me in my new job as general manager of the Fitz Pub. “You are going. But not until you get your ass home for a clean-up.” She raised an eyebrow. “Did you ever get to my wax artist?”
I put a hand to my face.
“All right. Well. Get on home and take a shower. Do you have a nice dress? I mean, something super dressy?”
“Yes. He sent a dress. And shoes. And…a kind of a…mask.”
“All righty then. He hasn’t lost his edge. So, let’s go.” She snapped her fingers and smiled at me.
“Go where?” Panic was settling into my psyche. I’d spent a lot of energy in the last couple of days being mad at Trent. I wasn’t quite ready to let go of it.
“It’s wax time, puta.” She handed me my purse.
“We have work to do.”
“It can wait.”
“That’s not what you said to me this morning.” I crossed my arms, leaning back in my rickety chair.
“Yeah, well, scratch all that. Hang on.” She pulled her phone from her pocket. “Hey. Yeah. I gotta go help Melody with something. I’ll be back in about an hour.” Her face reddened. “Yes, I know.” She turned away from me and muttered something more, then ended the call. “Whew. All right. Come on. It won’t take long.”
Two hours later I was home, staring at myself in the mirror. I put a hand to my neck, turning my head left, then right, admiring the semi-casual updo and the subtle makeup. I held out my hands, checking out the bright red nails. Between the primping, buffing, waxing and everything else, they’d even found time to get me a shower at that crazy spa.
I glanced over at the bed, where the simple, cream silk dress lay alongside a cream-colored garter belt, real silk stockings and a gorgeous, matching bra. The shoes were a work of art—sky-high heels, open toes, satin ribbons to wrap around my ankles. Everything was the perfect size. Of course.
I sat, fingering the creamy mask. It was intimidating, yet beautiful, edged with intricate lace. My fingers trembled as I held it to my face, then dropped it onto my lap.
You wanted this, Melody. You demanded it from him. Do not be that woman who, when her man gives her what she wanted, suddenly changes her mind.
I willed myself not to cry and screw up the expensive makeup job. As I was fastening the stockings into the belt, my phone buzzed from the table next to my bed. I smiled when I saw I was Evelyn.
Mel. Just relax. It will be fine. He loves you.
I sighed and looked at the ceiling before answering. I’m not sure about all that. He wants to tie me up and spank me. That’s not love. That’s kind of crazy.
Don’t worry. If you don’t like it, tell him. He’ll stop. He’ll do anything for you. Lighten up a little.
There was a brief pause, then another text from my friend. You’re going to blow his mind, chica. Own it.
I covered my lips with my hands. There was no denying it—I was flat out terrified. I wanted this. Or I thought I wanted it. And now I definitely had to own it.
Noting the time, I stood slowly and pulled the dress with me. The fabric was like a lovely soft sheet draping my body, magically clinging to all my curves. I ran my hands across my stomach, down my hips, admiring myself in the full-length mirror.
With a frown, I started pulling at the pins and whatnot that the hair guy had used to give me the glamorous up-do. My man wanted my hair down. I ran my fingers through it, which reminded me of the way he loved to do it—gently at first, then when he’d close his fingers in it, tugging and pulling…
I shivered, and I smiled at myself, noting how my makeup looked better since I wasn’t ghostly pale behind it anymore.
We’d parted badly. And I’d taken his Jeep. Granted, I’d left it in his garage, keys in the gas door. But I had taken the man’s car. It had been a bold move. Or a shitty move. I still hadn’t decided. But now, if Evelyn was to be believed, this night would be The One. The night I would get the full force of this whole BDSM Thing. Take it or leave it.
Amazon best-selling author, mom of three, Realtor, beer blogger, brewery marketing expert, and soccer fan, Liz Crowe is a Kentucky native and graduate of the University of Louisville currently living in Ann Arbor. She has decades of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as a three-continent, ex-pat trailing spouse.
Her early forays into the publishing world led to a groundbreaking fiction subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” which has gained thousands of fans and followers interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”).
With stories set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch, in successful real estate offices and at times in exotic locales like Istanbul, Turkey, her books are unique and told with a fresh voice. The Liz Crowe backlist has something for any reader seeking complex storylines with humor and complete casts of characters that will delight, frustrate and linger in the imagination long after the book is finished.
Don’t ever ask her for anything “like a Budweiser” or risk bodily injury.
Liz Crowe writes intense true-to-life stories that make you feel. Whether it’s anxiety, love, fear, hate, bliss, or loss woven into her plot lines, you will feel it deep down to your very soul.
–Audrey Carlan, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author
Liz Crowe is one of those rare authors who knows how to take the emotions of her characters and make them real for her readers, binding you to the story.”
—USA Today and Internationally Bestselling Author Desiree Holt
“Liz Crowe is my drug of choice for unconventional romance that pushes the envelope of my comfort zone.”
–Bestselling Author of the Enigma Series, Ditter Kellan
Curated Content for Writers—July 21
Your week is now complete! 😉
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Hi, SE Readers, Joan here today. Summer is in full swing—a time for lots of outdoor activities, vacations, and more. But writers never stray too far from writing. It’s Friday and that means it’s the time when all six Story Empire authors share some of the best writing related topics we’ve found around the web. But first, don’t forget to read Monday’s post by P. H. on Scrivener Back-ups and Snapshots (Part two) and Craig’s post Not Actually a Guru And now, for this week’s links:
- How to Write a Fight Scene (11-step process)
- Pseudonyms (pros, cons, and practicalities)
- A Beginner’s Guide to Chatbots (what, why, and how)
- What’s the Difference Between KDP and KDP Select (Which option is right for you)
- 7 Steps to a User-Friendly Blog (excellent and useful tips!)
- Reader Betrayal (pen names, cover art, and delivering what you promise)
- Plotting or Pantsing (or somewhere in the…
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EDITING 101: 47 – Dangling Modifiers…
Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog
Originally posted as the Dun Writin’—Now Whut? series on this blog, EDITING 101 is a weekly refresher series for some of you and brand new for others.
Courtesy ofAdirondack Editing
In a previous article, we discussed dangling participles(EDITING 101:24). Today we’re going to discuss dangling modifiers.
If you remember, “dangling” is another word for “misplaced.” A modifier is a noun or an adjective that amends or explains, adding description to another noun. So a dangling modifier is simply a word modifying a noun that is in the wrong place, thereby making the sentence ambiguous or confusing, and sometimes downright funny.
Incorrect: The woman walked the dog in purple suede cowboy boots.
Correct: The woman in purple suede cowboy boots walked the dog.
Incorrect: We saw several monkeys on vacation in Mexico.
Correct: While on vacation in Mexico, we saw several monkeys.
Incorrect: We saw several…
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