Monthly Archives: November 2011

Crimson Wind is Red Hot!

Finally! I got to read Crimson Wind! It has been on my read list since before the publication date even came up. The first book in this Horngate Witches series, Bitter Night, grabbed my attention and made me fall in love with Max, the bad-ass Shadowblade. So, when Crimson Wind hit the shelves, I wanted to read it immediately, but alas, things get in the way, and I have not had the opportunity to move it to the top of the list. Until now.

So, did the sequel live up to the first installment? HELL YEAH! It is one of the few books that I read non-stop, straight-through. I loved every page. Except the last one. I did not want the story to end. I won’t tell you why except that the third book, Shadow City, will be out this December, and I don’t think I will wait nearly as long to move it up on my list.

So, for those of you have not read Bitter Night and Crimson Wind, you are really missing out on a great series. The witch is a dark and complex creature intent on doing bad things for good reasons. One of those things is creating Max, her Prime Shadowblade. Max is a kick-ass powerful magic-made creature of the night. Sunshine will kill her, but not likely much more than that. The Shadowblades have their counterparts, Sunspears, that do the Shadowblade job during the day. These two work together in shifts (obviously) to protect the witch and her coven.  What they need to protect the coven from gets bigger and bigger (and badder) as the series moves along!

Got that? Good, because that’s all I’m saying. Anything else would be a spoiler, and I don’t do spoilers. So, read this one!

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What the heck am I doing?

I’m still so new at writing that I often wonder if I’m doing this right. There is so much more to writing than just telling a story. Of course telling the story is the most important part. Without that, I wouldn’t really be doing any of this… so, what am I doing exactly? Well, I’m writing, promoting, and learning about the craft of writing.

The first part, like I said, is writing, telling the story. I’m getting better at that, but I still don’t have a novel published. I have two written, but both are in the editing stages and are not ready yet to be published.  It takes a lot to get a story from the first inkling of a tale to a published novel.

First, you have to think about it for a long time and work it out in your head. Then, you have to start writing things down, and that isn’t even the story yet. You have to write out character sketches, outlines, research notes, and more… I suppose these things are not always necessary, but I don’t know how to write a novel without doing this. I keep a notebook on my stories and jot down ideas, plot lines, and other details constantly.

Then, I start getting serious about a chapter outline. The chapter outline keeps me going and keeps my plot on track. It is not permanent, however. I’ve learned that the best stories have characters that take on a life of their own, and when that happens they change the plot. So, I change my outline. But, the outline helps keep things from getting too far off the original track.

Once I have a pretty good start on a chapter outline, I’ll start detailing the chapters. I start with a loose outline and just start adding more and more details. This is the most flexible part. I don’t put any rules on it. Whatever I think or feel I write, keeping it free and easy. This is where the real creativity comes out, and this is what is turned into the novel.

After the novel is finished, what am I going to do with it?  I’m really interested in self publishing and being and indie (or independent author), but I still don’t think I know enough about it.  I’m learning. A lot of what I’m learning has been found on Twitter. I follow a lot of other indie-authors and resources for indies like the following:

 @WoMensLitCafe 

Indie_Kindle

Indie_Kindle

@IndieKindle

 @IndieBookIBC

@AuthorNetwork

and others…

They help.  I also like following book bloggers that do book reviews and other bloggers that help indie-authors promote their work.  Some are:

@PattiRoberts7

@Tynga

@piercebooks

and many others… too many to mention them all.  The point is there are so many people out there willing to help. It is a network of people helping people and returning that help.  I’ve been very surprised to see so much support and such a robust community. So, I’m learning a lot! Thanks all!!

So, now I’m editing my novel and soon will be publishing, and in doing so, I’m sure I’ll learn even more!! And, somewhere along the lines, hopefully, I will figure out what I’m doing!!

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Hot Vikings and Independent Women

Let me start this blog by saying that I do NOT read romance novels, and particularly NOT historical romance novels. (My MOM reads historical romance.) Although, I did love Wuthering Heights in High School, but that’s a secret, and so is Loki’s Daughters by Delle Jacobs.

http://www.amazon.com/Lokis-Daughters-ebook/dp/B0033WSKA4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1320806449&sr=8-1

I do really like romance books that have some kind of paranormal twist, but Loki’s Daughters does not fit in that category.  It is about hot Vikings that invade Celtic land wanting to find a home of their own and, oh yeah, wives!  The main character Arienh is a strong independent woman and she is not about to let these invaders push her around. She never gives up, even if it costs her what she most desires.

Even though there were no demons, aliens, vampires, or other paranormal activity (except potentially one ghost scene), I really enjoyed this novel. It was not overwhelmingly stuffed with sex, but sex was used where it belonged within the story. Oh yeah, and some of it was really funny!  I always think that historical romance is going to be all sex and frail women being swept off their feet and probably ravaged on the moors of Scotland or something, but Loki’s Daughters did not fit that mold at all.  Well, there were hot Vikings ready to sweep women off their feet, but the women were having none of that! It made for a brilliant story.  And, you just can’t go wrong with HOT Vikings!

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Death’s Hand – 5 stars!

Death’s Hand by SM Reine is packed full of action! I highly recommend it:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005WZKJN6/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=smre03-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399373&creativeASIN=B005WZKJN6

I’ve read previous books by this author such as Six Moon Summer and All Hallows Moon.  I have a review of Six Moon Summer on my website:

http://sjordanasble.com/Books__Reviews___Links.html

Her previous books were really good, and Death’s Hand promised to be as well. The writing is impecable and the author’s style is easy to read. This is a very talented author and her new book Death’s Hand only proves it further! 

If you like hot chicks kicking ass then you are in for a treat. Reine tells a complete story in Death’s Hand while dropping hints of things to come. She doesn’t answer all the question and leaves possibilities out there. The heroine saves the day, but does she get to walk away with everything?

Her characters are compelling and interesting. You find yourself rooting for them as they push through the conflicts of the story line. Speaking of story line, WOW! This plot line is solid and interesting.  Take one ex-exoricist, one hunky witch of a partner, and a loyal best friend, then throw in the best friend’s hunky cousin and a couple of corpse-raising necromancers and see what you get… spicy, deadly fun! 

For more on SMReine: http://www.smreine.com/

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