Mindee Arnett
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Dear Readers,

It’s February 15, which means we’re exactly 3 months away from release. Looking back, it’s truly hard to believe. I first conceived of the idea for Onyx & Ivory all the way back in 2012 as part of a world building exercise I did for a blog post. You can read the actual post here, if you’re interested. So much of the book has changed, not the least of which is the main character’s name. Originally, Kate was called Jane. I chose the name purely because I liked the title “Traitor Jane.” Thought it had a nice ring to it.

But then my sister pointed out that this was the title people used to refer to Jane Fonda back in the day when she was protesting the Vietnam War. This was way before my time, but once I realized it, I decided to change it to Kate. In the end, I think Kate is better. My other lead, Corwin, also went through a name change in the course of writing the book, but the reasons behind that one are best kept private–feel free to ask me in person, if you get the chance.

Speaking of in person, I have my first event of the year coming up in March 3 at NK-YA Fest located at the Erlanger Library in Kentucky. There are a bunch of awesome authors in attendance. Find out more here.

Audio Book News

That’s right, if you haven’t heard, there’s going to be an Onyx & Ivory audio edition! And the absolute best part is that the narrator is none other than Khristine Hvam. She is the reader for the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series by Laini Taylor. Not only do I love these books, but the audio versions are may favorite. In part, because Khristine reads them. I’m honored to have her.

 

Swag, Swag, and More Swag

Do you see that beautiful picture above? That piece of art inspired by the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series was done by the supremely talented Jenny of Seedlings Design Studio. I mention it here because I’ve been working with Jenny to design a bunch of Onyx & Ivory swag, some of which will be available in upcoming giveaways, including a preorder campaign. That’s right, if you’re already preordered Onyx & Ivory (you’re the best ever) be sure to save your receipts. Everyone who preorders will receive a brand new O&I short story. I use the term “short” loosely as it’s over 10k words. If you want to stay in the know with all the giveaways and swag reveals, be sure to tune into the official Onyx & Ivory tumblr page: https://onyxandivorybooks.tumblr.com.

Well, that’s it for now. In the meantime, happy reading, happy writing.

Musingly,

Mindee

The Genesis of Onyx & Ivory – WriteOnCon

If you haven’t heard, there’s a really awesome online writing conference going on right now called WriteOnCon. I’m a contributor again this year, with a podcast of story structure, and I’m also critiquing submission materials. If you’d like me to take a look at your query, let me know. Sign up here.

The really coolest thing about this conference though, at least for me, is that it’s the very same conference where I first came up the initial premise for Onyx & Ivory. Flash back to WriteOnCon 2012. It was my first time as a contributing author, and my topic was on world building. In order to write it effectively I decided to generate a new world as part of the exercise. That world ended up being the very same world (and main character) in Onyx & Ivory. Pretty cool, huh? I think so.

So cool, in fact, that I’ve decided to present that very same guest post here. This is the original post. I’ve made no updates, and as you can see a lot has changed from my initial idea to the final product, including Kate’s name. Nevertheless, this is where it all began. Enjoy!

World Building: Let Your Characters Be Your Guide 

In my experience, writers tend to fall into one of two categories when it comes to world building: The Tolkien Types and Everybody Else. The Tolkien types are those brilliant people who will create entire mythologies and even languages for their fictional worlds. For them, the world comes first and the characters and story second. World building like this is a marvelous feat and one I greatly admire, but I’m afraid that if you are a Tolkien type, you might as well stop reading now. This post just isn’t for you.

For everybody else, our stories start with a character and/or situation and the world building develops out of it. If you want to get technical, this is the “bottom-up” strategy as described here [link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top-down_and_bottom-up_design ]. While this is a perfectly acceptable approach to world building, it does involve a couple of pitfalls. The first major issue is that it can lead to inconsistencies and plot holes, the latter being especially true when we’re talking about the fantasy and sci-fi genres. The second issue is that the world building tends to be underdeveloped.

And really, both of these problems make sense for us bottom-uppers, right? I mean, we’re far more interested in the characters populating our story than the world it takes place in (while the opposite may be true for the Tolkien Types). No wonder our world building is weak. Also, the very idea of creating an entire world is daunting. It’s so BIG, so OUT THERE; it’s the forest we can never see.  I, for one, barely understand the world I live in, let alone the one I’m creating.

Fortunately, one effective solution for avoiding the world building blues of plot holes and underdevelopment is to focus even more on what we love best about the story—the characters populating the world. Crazy, you say? Nope, not at all. The characters—their back stories and especially their motivations—hold all the answers.

To demonstrate, I’m going to take you through some prewriting activities for a YA fantasy novel I would someday like to write. The following headers and questions will function as a world building worksheet.

Concept

What is the story about in its most general terms?

Right now, I picture this story as being Shadow and Bone meets the Pony Express—so high fantasy/steampunk-ish with an emphasis on horses and riding.

General Setting

What kind of world does this story place in? (Medieval Europe? Preindustrial? Futuristic? Try to be specific here, but don’t be afraid to change and modify as the story becomes clearer)

This story takes place in a world home to both humans and a race of vicious creatures known as the Mal’niveus. The Mal’niveus live in a vast network of tunnels beneath the ground, but they come out to the surface at night to hunt. In order to survive, the human population has built huge walled cities and barricaded the tunnels beneath the cities to keep the Mal’niveus out. As a result, the political structure of this world is similar to the city-state structure of Ancient Greece (something I’ll need to research later).

While many of the cities are self-sustaining, trade does exist between them, with goods being shipped via rivers or in large caravans, which I imagine might be protected by mages or sorcerers. For faster travel, the city-states rely on an independent guild known as The Riders (surely, I will come up with a more specific name later—even names play a part in world building). The Riders function the same as the Pony Express did in the American Old West (again something to research and draw on later).

Characters

Who is the main character and what is his/her primary motivation at the beginning of the novel?

·      16-year-old Jane lives on a small farm inside one of the city-states. Her primary motivation at the beginning is to become a Rider like her big brother, John. Riders are required to provide their own mount. But Jane’s horse is small and will have a hard time competing for one of the slots.

From these few brief sentences, the world is already taking shape. Although I don’t state it directly, there are ideas in here about class, social structure, and a number of other world building elements.

How much does Jane know about the bigger world she lives in?

·      Although she knows many things about the world, it’s primarily secondhand. She has experienced very little of the world beyond the farm. She has never seen a Mal’niveus before, and she knows only the very basics about the government that rules the city she lives in, as typical of a teenager.

Jane’s lack of experience and true knowledge about the Riders and the world at large is going to make it easy for me to include world building details naturally and without contrivance. There is so much that she is going to experience for the first time, same as the reader. Since she will most likely be the POV character, I should be able to convey much of the world through her eyes and reactions.

To break this down, consider that world building information is usually passed onto the reader in one of three ways:

1.     Description—what the world looks like, what the character sees, hears, smells, etc.

2.     Straight exposition—“this is how the world works” kind of statements. And yes, they will often be considered “telling” instead of “showing.”

3.     The POV Character’s interactions with the world and other characters, including dialogue and plot developments.

I will use all three types when writing this story. But when and how much will depend on my POV character, in this case, Jane. Description, naturally, should be used in every scene, although when Jane goes somewhere brand new for the first time, there will be a heavier emphasis on the description. When she’s at home, in her familiar world, the description will be lighter.

I will use straight exposition as sparingly as possible, but I will use it. Mostly, I will rely on it to convey the more unique ideas about this world, those which Jane already knows but which the reader doesn’t. For example, Jane already knows about the city-state structure of her world, the Mal’niveus, and the Riders, but these will be completely new to the reader. For some of these, I may use straightforward exposition, such as these example sentences:

Jane had never seen a Mal’niveus before, but she knew they lived deep underground, only emerging at night to hunt—deer, elk, humans, they didn’t care. Any fresh meat would do.

While it is possible that I could show all of these elements through a combination of #1 and #3, I will want to be careful about placing too much burden on the reader to figure things out for themselves. Sometimes it is okay and appropriate to give the readers “just the facts, ma’am.” If you leave too much up to the reader to guess at, they might grow frustrated with the story and put it down.

Primarily, however, I will rely on the POV character’s interactions with the world and with other characters to pass on world building information. Dialogue, of course, will be a key component. The trick here is to identify which characters know what and to use them effectively.

Identify supporting characters and their motivations, including forces of antagonism.

·      So far, the only supporting character I’ve identified is big brother John. And I don’t know his motivation in the story yet, other than to make sure his little sister doesn’t get hurt. But he does know a lot of about becoming a Rider. He will likely pass this information on to Jane.

·      The Mal’niveus are a force of antagonism, and they have already provided a main structural element to the world building by creating the necessity for the walled city-states.

I haven’t yet identified the main villain, but once I do I will need to explore his/her motivation extensively. What does the bad guy want? Why does he want it? How does he plan on getting it? Answers to these questions should both inform and be informed by the world at large. Think about it—only the perfect storm conditions of post World War I Germany could’ve produced a Hitler. The more we explore the villain’s motivation for his/her badness, the more these conditions will become apparent. Once they are apparent, put them into the story as much as you can and as much as makes sense.

Finally, my last bit of advice is to try and make the world building as fun for you as possible. If the writer is having fun playing in their world, the reader will, too.

Onyx & Ivory Street Team Sign-Ups

Dear friends, it’s January 15, and that means we’re exactly four months away from the release of Onyx & Ivory. I just can’t believe it. How did this happen? Oh wait, time flies, that’s how it happened.

O&I Street Team Sign-Ups

Speaking of time, as usual I’m running short on it, which means I’m only just now launching the official Onyx & Ivory Street Team. For those of you unfamiliar with street teams, basically you sign up to help promote the book, both online and around your town, and in return you receive exclusive content and prizes. If you already know what’s up, the sign up link is at the bottom of this email.

Some caveats. This is my very first time trying something like this, and as such I’ve no actual idea what I’m doing, but I promise to do my best. There will be a learning curve, though, so please keep that in mind. I’m also looking for anyone interested in captaining the team. Basically this person will be my go-to individual(s) for questions and suggestions about tasks and prizes and whatnot. If you’re interested, send me an email.

How it Works

  • There will be 12 tasks total. The first 2 will be two weeks apart starting Feb 11. Then starting Mar 11 there will be 1 task per week until release week.
  • A special newsletter will appear in your inbox providing the details of the assigned task (including how to get credit for it), the due date, and the exclusive content and/or prizes up for grabs.
  • For every task completed, you will be entered to win a major prize package at the the end of the launch.
  • To qualify for the big giveaway, you have to complete 10 out of 12 tasks, but you will receive points for every task, so doing them all will increase your chances off winning.
  • Depending on the number of sign-ups, there might be several big prizes at the end.
  • Everyone who completes 10 of the 12 tasks will receive a swag package, including bookmarks, book plates, and other goodies.
  • Open internationally.

Exclusive Content & Prizes

All of these are things I hope to offer, although I can’t promise everything will happen. There will also be more. Again, I’m learning as I go.

  • Advanced Readers Copies (most likely eArcs, but some of the giveaways will include physical arcs)
  • Interactive Map
  • Exclusive Badges
  • Dream Cast
  • Quizzes to determine your magic type
  • Previews of Book 2
  • Bookmarks + bookplates + other swag (including the original inspiration for the “moonbelts” in the story)

  • Trading Cards
  • Signed Copies of other books like these (candles, too!):

  • And some of my own books, of course.

Other Details

As I mentioned above, this is my first time doing this, and I want to say thanks ahead of time to any of you that sign up. It’s no secret that a lot of success for a book is based on how much buzz it generates, and a street team can go a long way to helping create that. It might not seem like it, but every mention helps.

Also, I promise to keep these tasks reasonable. I understand how valuable your time is. It’s the same for me. Some of you might not know that I work a full time day job in addition to the writing gig, which frankly, is also full-time. I also have two children young enough that they can’t be left home by themselves longer than an hour. Not to mention horses, dogs, and cats to take care of. So yeah, I get it. Every task will be designed to be doable even for someone with a hectic and crazy schedule.

Street Team Sign up

And finally, at last, you can sign up here. Just be signing up, you’ll be given access to the first five pages of Onyx & Ivory to read online.

Musingly Yours,

Mindee

Remembering Majyk Cover Reveal and Preorder

Today it’s my pleasure to help my friend Valia Lind reveal the cover for her next book, Remembering Majyk, And let me tell you, it’s gorgeous! But first, a little about the book. Here’s the blurb:

Calista Faulkner never believed in fairy tales…until she is thrust into one.

While attending a college party, she’s attacked by terrifying creatures straight out of a modern day Dr. Frankenstein’s handbook. Fleeing for her life, she discovers that her human memories are a lie and nothing is what it seems.
Calista becomes a target and her only chance of survival is to trust the mysterious Brendan Parnell. He seems to know all of her secrets, even those she doesn’t remember herself.

Together they must fight to protect the most important part of their inheritance, the Relic of Knowledge. Unfortunately, Calista has no memory of her magical life and no idea where she hid the relic. As her memories begin to resurface with bone crushing agony, Calista must face the facts: she is a Volshebnitsya of the High Realm of Skazka and it is her duty to stop the Glava, the masters of Shadowlands.

The world around them begins to falls apart. Plagued by storms that are destroying cities and torn by the sinister monsters of Russian lore. The secrets locked deep inside her mind are her destiny and her undoing. If both worlds are to survive, Calista and Brendan must face the darkness around them—and the darkness threatening from within.

And now for the cover!

You can add the book on goodreads here.

Also, there’s a special preorder going on. Up until the day of release, there’s a special price for the book of $1.99! So be sure to preorder now by going here.

Onyx & Ivory Advanced Copy Giveaway!

Christmas has come early, at least for me! These pretties arrived the day after Thanksgiving, and that means it’s time to give one away. I’m not sure how many of these will be available, so if you want a printed arc, now’s your chance. As always, the giveaway is easy to enter—the only requirement is that you add the book on Goodreads and mention the giveaway at least once on any social media platform. This giveaway is opened Internationally and runs until Wed December 6.

 

In case you need a reminder, here’s the scoop on the book out May 15, 2018, first in a planned dualogy.

They call her Traitor Kate. It’s a title Kate Brighton inherited from her father after he tried to assassinate the high king of Rime. Cast out of the noble class, she now works for the royal courier service. Only those most skilled ride for the Relay and only the fastest survive, for when night falls, the nightdrakes—deadly flightless dragons—come out to hunt. Fortunately, Kate has a secret edge: she is a wilder, born with forbidden magic that allows her to influence the minds of animals.

And it’s this magic that leads her to a caravan mysteriously massacred by drakes in broad daylight—the only survivor Corwin Tormane, the son of the king. Her first love, the boy she swore to forget, after he condemned her father to death. With their paths once more entangled, Kate and Corwin must uncover secrets, both past and present, to face this new threat of drakes who attack in the daylight and the darker menace behind them. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Onyx & Ivory Cover Reveal

Big news! The cover for my next book, Onyx & Ivory, was released into the world last Wednesday by the awesome folks over at Happy Ever After. You can check out the post here. Or you can scroll down to see it in this post. I’ll wait until right here until you’re done…

So…what do you think? Awesome, right? When I first saw this I simply had no words, which is saying something for a writer. Seriously, though, I love it. The artist is Santi Zoraidez and you can check out more of his awesome work on his website. The team at Harper behind the overall design is the art directer, Alison Donalty and the designer, David Curtis. I have David to thank for the surprising direction they took on the cover. He read a draft of Onxy & Ivory and zeroed in on one particular scene as the inspiration for this. I would love to tell you all about that scene, but I’m afraid it’ll have to wait.

What I can tell you is that Onyx & Ivory is out May 15, 2018, and you can preorder from any of your favorite places. You can also add it on Goodreads here. And did you know that every time someone adds it a baby unicorn is born? It’s true…I swear! So be sure to tell a friend.

Oh, and just an early heads up that I’m preparing to launch a street team for the book sometime in January. Anyone who wishes to join the street team will be guaranteed a chance to read the book early. You’ll also win swag and prizes and be able to compete for some fabulous giveaways. Be sure to check my website as we get closer if you’re interested in joining.

About the book:

They call her Traitor Kate. It’s a title Kate Brighton inherited from her father after he tried to assassinate the high king years ago. Now Kate lives as an outcast, clinging to the fringes of society as a member of the Relay, the imperial courier service. Only those most skilled ride for the Relay, and only the fastest survive, for when night falls, the nightdrakes—deadly flightless dragons—come out to hunt. Fortunately, Kate has a secret edge: she is a wilder, born with magic that allows her to influence the minds of animals. But it’s this magic that she needs to keep hidden, for being a wilder is forbidden, punishable by death. And it’s this magic that leads her to a caravan mysteriously massacred by drakes in broad daylight—the only survivor Corwin Tormaine, the son of the king. Her first love, the boy she swore to forget, the boy who broke her heart when he condemned her father to death.

With their paths once more entangled, Kate and Corwin must put the past behind them. The threat of drakes who attack in the daylight is only the beginning of a darker menace stirring in the kingdom of Rime—one whose origins have dire implications for Kate’s father’s crimes and will lead both Kate and Corwin into the middle of a brewing civil war.

Acclaimed author Mindee Arnett’s stunning new novel thrusts readers into a beautiful, expansive, and dangerous new world—one where trust is rare, magic is commonplace, and little is as it seems.

New Book News – Onyx and Ivory

Welcome to Rime, the world of Onyx and Ivory, where dragons rule the night and magic rules the day.

Yes, that’s right. It’s here; it’s finally here! The book news I’ve been sitting on for a year. Seriously, a whole year! Think I deserve the gold star for patience. But before I get into the details, first let me share the details:

Pretty straight forward, right? But to be honest, this description doesn’t come close to scratching the surface of what this book is about. At its conception, more than two years ago, I thought of it as Pitch Black meets the Pony Express, and that description is still applicable, in part.

Kate Brighton, one of the two main protagonists, works for the Relay, the royal courier system connecting the twelve united cities of the kingdom of Rime. Her job is both important and dangerous. For when the sun sets in Rime the nightdrakes come out to hunt. These flightless dragons, ranging in size from pigs to elephants, will devour any living thing they can find. The only safe place is behind the magically fortified walls of the cities and Relay towers. Basically, Kate has to ride fast and true to make sure she completes her run before night falls. Fortunately for Kate, she was born with a magical (and forbidden) gift of wild magic—one that allows her to talk to animals, including the horses she relies on to keep her safe.

That’s all I’m going to reveal about the book itself for now, but I promise more in future newsletters. Oh, but I do want to tell you the reason why we’re only now announcing the book even though Harper bought it last April. In a singe word, the title. It’s taken us nearly a year to finally decide one.

As you might not know, titles (and covers) are two of the biggest marketing aspects of a book, one that the publisher has final say on it. Originally, I called this book. Traitor Kate, but as the book progressed and the second main character, Corin, grew more prominent, the story also outgrew that title. Before taking the book to acquisitions, my editor and I came up with a new one—Of Flame and Stone. Unfortunately though, the folks at Harper later decided that this title was too much like another upcoming book, and we were asked to find a new one. That process took months and months. It also took until the last minute. If you follow me on social media, you know I said we’d announce the book on Tuesday. That was plan, but because we were still scrambling for a title it didn’t happen until Friday. Such is life in publishing. Not that I’m complaining. To be honest, I’m thrilled just to still be in the game! More books! Hooray!

If you’re curious, here are some of the other almost-titles for this book:

  • Shades of Fate
  • Through Shadows Falling
  • Rime
  • The Book That Must Not Be Named

I might be kidding on that last one. But finally we decided on Onyx and Ivory. These words refer to something specific in the book, like a proper noun, but it also invokes some of the themes. Anyway, I hope you like. And I really, really hope it gets to stay (keep your fingers crossed on that one).

In the meantime, I’ve got all kinds of giveaways and fun events coming up to introduce you to the book. One cool thing I’m planning is a vlog series designed to help writers write accurately about horses. Yep, you heard that right. It’ll be me, on camera, talking about horses. And riding them and giving them treats. You know. Fun stuff. I’m also working on a series of posts that detail my writing process from start to finish. Those will appear both on the blog and in upcoming newsletters.

But the one thing I’m most excited about is the street team I’m hoping to launch, assuming, of course, people are interested in joining. It’s going to be called the Relay, and I’m hoping some of you might sign up as “riders.” The exclusive giveaways for members are going to be epic. I’m going full out on this one. If you’re not familiar with street teams, basically you sign up to help me promote the book throughout the months leading up to the release in various on-painful, hopefully fun, ways. And in return you get exclusive goodies, both in terms of sneak peeks but also awesome swag. I’m going to be honest guys, I’m really hoping to make a splash with this book. But I won’t be able to do that without help from readers like you.

Okay, that’s all for now, but more coming soon. Including some pretty amazing Avalon news. Oh, and if you won’t to read a brand new Avalon short story, be sure to sign up for my newsletter.

Musingly Yours,

Mindee

What I Wish the Nonwriters in My Life Could Understand

Warning, this is not a happy post. It’s also very personal, something I rarely do online and don’t feel very comfortable with doing.

But it’s also a post I have to write. It’s a weight I need to unload into these words and onto this page. Even if no one else read this, I need to get it out.

It’s no secret to those who know me that one of my biggest wishes is to be able to quit my day job and write full time. Okay, who am I kidding? If I’m being honest and unfiltered, it really is my single biggest desire, even over all the other way more important things I should long for, like a way to heal our shattering nation.

The desire to be unfettered by the daily, and often creatively-draining demands of my day job is one I think about often, even though I try not to. For the record, I have a great day job, and I’m supremely grateful for it. My job is good to me. My employers and coworkers are supportive and giving and wonderful, and nothing in this post is a criticism about any of that. I like my job. I really do.

But I love writing more.

It’s that simple. Writing stories, having them be made into books—that is what fills me up. That’s what satisfies me in a way the day job never could. Writing pays me in a lot more money. And I’m very fortunate that I get to do it at all. I’ve had five books published so far, and I’ve a new series coming. I’m blessed in so many ways

Except for one.

Time.

I live my life in a constant deficit of time. Have you ever not had enough money to pay your bills? You know that sickening, hopeless feeling you get that you’ll never catch up? Never have a reprieve? That’s often what it feels like for me, except with time instead of money. The thing is, I publish and write by choice. It’s a willful commit and sacrifice, and as much as I love it, it can be so so very hard to do both.

Like this past week.

Because keeping my day job isn’t a choice. It’s a requirement. I have to keep it. I need to be able to support my family. At least, I have to for right now. It’s possible in a few years that might change. I’m trying to put myself in a position where I have more choices about my working life, but that times time. (Debt, debt, debt, never enough time). Or maybe I’ll have a book hit big enough that I can afford to quit (and for the record, most writers don’t make enough to support a family on. We just don’t. It’s the nature of the business, and if you’re a writer who has to work, don’t feel like you’re somehow less. You’re not. You’re not, Mindee. You’re not. I swear).

Yet it always feels like less. The thing is, in my life, the writing never gets to come first. The day job does. Always. That’s how it should be, of course. It’s just not how I want it to be. And the thing is, even though I have a day job, I still have the same demands on me as a fulltime writer. I do book events. I market and promote. I have deadlines and edits and everything else. I’ve got huge plans for this upcoming book, and I’m excited about them, and I eagerly want to put time and energy into doing them. But no matter what, those activities will always be second.

Anyway, the point I’m trying to make here, the thing I wish the non writers in my life understood, is how hard it is when I have a week like this past one, where I didn’t get any writing done. At all. I’ve been trying to find a metaphor that works. The best I’ve come up with is this:

Imagine that you were a bird born in a pet shop. You have wings, but you’ve never used them because you’ve lived all your life in a cage. But that’s alright. The cage is comfortable and safe, and for the most part, you’re happy there

But then one day you get out of the cage and learn to fly. You realize you were made to fly. It’s the best thing ever. It’s your heart desire. But because you are a bird born in a pet shop, you’re only allowed to fly for small periods of time. Most days, you can live with that, the couple of minutes you get to soar free are enough to sustain you the rest of the time, enough to hope and to dream that maybe one day there’ll be more time. The cage doesn’t feel so much like a cage if you can escape it for a little while.

But then there are days, and sometimes even whole weeks, where you don’t get to fly at all. Those are the times you resent the cage, when you feel it all around you, closing in and getting smaller by the second, and wish you could be a bird that wasn’t born in a pet shop. That you could be a bird who could fly all the time. Whenever you wanted. Whenever you needed.

There. That’s what it feels like. Fortunately it’s not all the time. Most days, most hours, I’m happy and content, but sometimes I’m not. It’s no one’s fault. No one’s problem to fix or to heal. Really, all that any of us can ask when we’re hurting or struggling is simply for understanding. That’s all.

And I do feel better now, having said it. So long as I get to fly a little, I can keep on living in the cage. Thank you for reading, and for understanding. Happy fun times will be coming back soon. I promise.

In the meantime, I want to leave off with this quote. All my writer friends and readers, this is how you make me feel:

Ruined in Retribution Cover Reveal

Today I’m super happy to help co-host the cover reveal for Valia Lind’s RUINED IN RETRIBUTION, book 3 in the Titanium Series. You can see it below–and trust me, it’s amazing! Also, if you haven’t read this series yet, you’re in luck. Book 1, PIECES OF REVENGE is currently free. You can download it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords.

 

ruined-in-redemption-ebooksm

Synopsis:

Gone. Gone. Gone.

For the past two months, it has taken all of Logan’s determination to just keep going. Losing Tasia to Kallos Enterprises shattered his world, but he is not about to give up on what she had started.

Together with her family, Logan works to destroy the company that ruined their lives. The corporation is growing bigger and stronger by the minute, weaponizing the drug and selling it to the highest bidder. But that’s not the only hurdle to overcome. Logan’s past is catching up to him, and the time has come to pay. His family’s secrets are unraveling everything he has built for himself and now, Logan is fighting on multiple fronts.

Save Tasia. Destroy Kallos Enterprises. Stay alive.

Such a simple list, such an impossible mission.

Time is running out and Logan is left with one question: can he save them all?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Author. Photographer. Artist. Born and raised in St. Petersburg, Russia, Valia Lind has always had a love for the written word. She wrote her first full book on the bathroom floor of her dormitory, while procrastinating to study for her college classes. Upon graduation, she has moved her writing to more respectable places, and have found her voice in Young Adult fiction. You can visit her online at http://valialind.wordpress.com or follow her on twitter, where she spends way too much time, @ValiaLind

Awesome right? The book is out December 7 and you can preorder it on Amazon here.You can also add the book on Goodreads and get to know Valia over on Twitter, Facebook, and her webpage.

Happy reading!

Almost News + Giveaway

It’s almost September, and that means I’ve almost got news, as in the title for my next book! We’re zeroing in on a title right now, and I hope to get to share it with you soon.

In other news, I’m heading to Dragon*Con next week. I’ve got two panels lined up:

  • Writing YA–The Craft on Saturday at 4:00 in A707
  • YA Lit After Dark on Saturday at 8:30 in A707

Hope to see you there.

Now onto the giveaway! You know what’s awesome? Books. New books are awesome. So are friends, especially awesomely, talented writer friends. And that’s why I’ve decided to celebrate a few of my friends who’ve got new books coming out. All four of these books are amazing, and you’re going to want to read each one!

What’s up for Grabs?

friends_give

  • A signed arc of One Was Lost by Natalie D. Richards – read about it here
  • A signed hard cover of A Million Times Goodnight by Kristina McBride – read about it here
  • A preorder of Gilt Hollow by Lorie Langdon – read about it here
  • A preorder of Metaltown by Kristen Simmons – read about it here
Who can enter and for how long?

The contest starts right now and will end at midnight EST on Wednesday September 7. The contest is open to US only. Apologies to all my international friends. You all are great, and I promise more international contests will be coming soon. (Maybe with my actual news???)

 

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway