Death has made its appearance among the McKenzie clan, so I have to take a break. We all times that try us, and this is mine.
I took the weekend off. Well, kind of. My kids wanted to take me out to brunch for Mother’s Day. I said, “No. Come here. I like my cooking better than the X or Y or even Z restaurant.” So, of course, I got my wish.
We remembered all those other Mother’s Days when Grandma Willie or Grandma Mimi were with us. We promised to have a big family reunion like the ones we used to have at Russian River. And then…the dishes.
I’d forgotten the aftermath. Fortunately, my husband’s a trooper, and we shouldered through the Happy Mother’s Day clean-up. Of course, I totally forgot I was an author launching a book this week, and when I pulled up my blog to “check” what I’d prepared for Monday…NOTHING!
Being a mom takes priority. Being an author is a very close second. So here’s my blog for the week. Buy my book. I don’t care which one, just pick a book. BUT the newest one is dazzling. Well, almost dazzling. It’s fun, and I enjoyed writing it. Sometimes.
All my books are available online.
Some Very Messy Medieval Magic is available at these locations.
Print ISBN 9781939844460 / EBook ISBN 9781939844477
Order through Ingram, Follett, or from the publisher
EBook available in all formats
If you’d like to have a copy in your local library, please use this FORM and request the book.
Quote of the Week: “I’ve a grand memory for forgetting.” Robert Louis Stevenson
Book Blogger Hop
I stumbled on this Hop over at Just Another Girl and Her Books, and since I haven’t done more than the monthly #IWSG Hop in quite a long time, I thought I’d give this a whirl. I like the idea that each week there’s question to answer and so many book bloggers I haven’t met yet! Besides, I need a change of pace. It’s spring and time to freshen everything. This week’s question is
Do you ever feel like you have emerged better for reading a book? (submitted by Rubina@ Booklove)
I guess my answer depends on what better refers to? A better person, reader, thinker, writer than I was before? I’ve certainly had great satisfaction from reading a book, and I’ve been inspired by reading many. I’ve even been motivated by some to go back to my writing with more enthusiasm. What do you think about a book’s power to make you better at something than your were before reading it?
April and May have been busy months. Tick Tock A Stitch in Crime launched May 1, and my next book in the Adventures of Pete and Weasel, Some Very Messy Medieval Magic, will arrive May 15
Both books are getting some excellent press and one reviewer contacted me via Goodreads to ask if I thought Tick Tock was a good read. “Of course,” I said. So he’s buying the book. I feel so powerful.
It would help me and the other ten authors a lot if you’d stop in at a few bloggers who are reviewing or featuring Tick Tock and/or SVMMM (my next title is NOT going to be so freakin’ long). Here are eight who have posts up already. Comments, like reviews, help if only for ye olde morale.
- The Wood Between the Worlds
- The Secret Files of Fairday Morrow Meet the Author
- Bish Denham’s Random Thoughts
- Beverly McClure A Story of a Writer
- Melissa Maygrove
- Juneta Key Writer’s Gambit
- Mason Canyon Thoughts in Progress
- Lisa Haselton’s Reviews and Interviews
Quote of the Week: “What’s the point of being alive if you don’t try to do something remarkable?” John Green
These few months have had more highs and lows than I can ever remember.
- I went to France with friends and saw castles that were like the ones in my newest book! HI
- I was accepted into the Tick Tock A Stitch in Crime anthology HI
- My husband became very ill. LOW.
- Dancing Lemur Press took on my middle-grade novel, Some Very Messy Medieval Magic HI
- My computer crashed. LOW.
- Even with backup, I could only restore some data, not all. Medium.
- My husband had surgery. LOW
- My husband finished Chemo Therapy and is on the mend. HI
- I attended the London Book Fair (virtually via ALLI) HI
- Tick Tock A Stitch in Crime launches tomorrow! HI ANXIETY
- Some Very Messy Medieval Magic (SVMMM) launches May 15! HIGHER ANXIETY
I’m ready for a touch of doldrums. These choppy seas are getting to me.
In the meantime here’s my gratitude for all who’ve signed on to help with SVMMM. Once I’m back up to full speed, I hope these authors will accept my invitation to be FEATURED on my blog. I’ll be putting out that call again soon.
If you want a GIFT and my behind the scenes NEWS, sign on for my Email Connect. I invade your inbox two times a month, sometimes only one. I often have more giveaways and what I hope is helpful information for writers and readers.
Quote of the Week: “Human beings can get used to virtually anything, given plenty of time and no choice in the matter whatsoever.” British Novelist, Tom Holt
Yep! Today I have to tidy up to do around here, so this is housekeeping day. Pulling on my rubber gloves and grabbing the mop, off I go!
I need help with another launch on May 15. Some Very Messy Medieval Magic could use some blog time and anything else you have in your social media larder. I’m very low tech when it comes to signing up, so if you’re interested, just leave a yes in the comment with what you’d like to do to help me with lift-off. I’ll get in touch with you.
Release date – May 15, 2018
$, 6×9 trade paperback, pages
Juvenile Fiction – Fantasy & Magic (JUV037000) / Boys & Men (JUV005000) Print ISBN 9781939844460 / EBook ISBN 9781939844477
Order through Ingram, Follett, or from the publisher
$ EBook available in all formats
Next, Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime will be here before I can wind the clock. Small panic attack going on at the moment. Hope you’ll take a look at this anthology. It has been wonderful to work on the story and the promotion with ten other authors.
Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime
An Insecure Writer’s Support Group Anthology
The clock is ticking…
Can a dead child’s cross-stitch pendant find a missing nun? Is revenge possible in just 48 minutes? Can a killer be stopped before the rescuers are engulfed by a city ablaze? Who killed what the tide brought in? Can a soliloquizing gumshoe stay out of jail?
Exploring the facets of time, eleven authors delve into mysteries and crimes that linger in both dark corners and plain sight. Featuring the talents of Gwen Gardner, Rebecca M. Douglass, Tara Tyler, S. R. Betler, C.D. Gallant-King, Jemi Fraser, J. R. Ferguson, Yolanda Renée, C. Lee McKenzie, Christine Clemetson, and Mary Aalgaard.
Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these eleven tales will take you on a thrilling ride into jeopardy and secrecy. Trail along, find the clues, and stay out of danger. Time is wasting…
$14.95 USA, 6×9 Trade paperback, 204 pages, Freedom Fox Press
Mystery & Detective (FIC022000) / Crime (FIC050000) / Thrillers (FIC031000)Print ISBN 9781939844545 eBook ISBN 9781939844552
$4.99 EBook available in all formats.
My story is called HEARTLESS
“Each story is fast paced, grabbing the reader from the beginning.”
– Readers’ Favorite, 5 stars
“I thoroughly enjoyed this collection of thought-provoking crime stories.” – Denise Covey, author
Founded by author Alex J. Cavanaugh, the Insecure Writer’s Support Group offers support for writers and authors alike. It provides an online database, articles and tips, a monthly blog posting, a Facebook and Instagram group, Twitter, and a monthly newsletter. www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com
Cleo has struggled to heal after her baby sister’s death, but the flashbacks to the accident won’t go away. With the move, she vows to keep her tragedy a secret and avoid pitying looks.
Something’s strange about the abandoned house across the street—flashes of light late at night and small flickers of movement that only someone looking for them would see.
Everyone says the house is deserted, but Cleo is sure it isn’t, and she’s sure whoever is inside is watching her.
In one night, Belleza’s life changes forever. So famous, her only choice is to hide her secret from the world so she can silence small town bigotry.
Then Cleo happens.
Do you remember that I was on the PINK TEAM during the Young Adult Scavenger Hunt? Well, the winners of books have been announced. Sudden Secrets goes to Meagan C. She won several books from the PINK TEAM. Congrats, Meagan. Your book is on the way.
Quote of the Week: “Housework is a treadmill from futility to oblivion with stop offs at tedium and counter productivity. ” — Erma Bombeck
Thank you for the reminder, Erma.
Since I’m not featuring any authors this month, I’m just posting things I enjoy writing about. If I seem scattered, you’re right. I’m still re-organizing my computer after it murdered so many of my files, and I’m busy with two book launches. More about that next time, but right now, let’s talk focus.
So let’s say you want the world or milieu to be paramount. Your characters will enter this world you’ve created, they’ll look around, react and interact with it, and they’ll let you find out what this place is about while, at the same time, they’re finding out about it.
Think of Alice. Now, there is one milieu-dominated story. Alice moves through an underground realm of odd tea parties and even odder court trials, then she returns home, having finally understood the futility of trying to make meaning out of any of her encounters. Critics of the story say that, unlike a good milieu story, Alice hasn’t been transformed by her experience, and this is often noted as the failure of the novel. If she had returned to her “real” world different than when she entered it, the story would have been a stronger one. Still Carroll’s milieu tale is popular and continues to entertain readers.
But the characters, you say. They must be the focus, especially the protagonist. And in a character-focused story, they are the focus. The character(s) start in one place and end in another. With my story Double Negative, my guy, Hutch McQueen, is stuck in an abusive home, and his one thought is escape. The problem is he can’t because he makes one bad choice after another that prevents his escape. It’s not until he starts making smart choices (and that take some serious work) that he finds the way out of the mess he’s in. And viola! He’s a new kind of kid–still flawed, but with an idea of how to make his way through the world without landing in trouble.
When the author focuses on an event that throws the established world order into chaos, then you’ve got a story that requires either knitting up the old order or creating a new one. Shakespeare did the event story a lot. Macbeth to name one.
Last month I said, “I give up!” That was the first time I ever heard those words from my lips. I never give up.
Even if I’m holding plank and the teacher says, “Just ten more breaths!” I take ten more breaths, but here’s the story about last month.
I was well into 40K words on a new WIP and feeling very…
when my computer coughed up a ginormous hairball and died. Okay, so I have backup, right? Yes and no. The file that I was working on–the 40K, bright and shiny, new, amazing, and best story ever–didn’t quite back up. My grocery list from 2010, did.
That’s when I went all…
and fell off my
Now, I’m climbing back onto my
and once I find my
I’m ready to ride!
Feel free to send warm, cheery thoughts and saddle soap.
Quote of the Week: “Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.” Coach John Wooden
In keeping with the Easter Bunny theme of the month, I’m hopping around a lot. Today I’m posting HERE. Please do some hopping of your own and meet me there!
Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors…and a chance to win some awesome prizes! On this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 120 hours!