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December 1-3 Special sale offer: Time to cozy up with some fun mysteries by Debbie De Louise!

Debbie says:

The Cobble Cove mystery series is on sale for 99 cents per book. Don’t miss this holiday special running December 1, 2, and 3.  Purchase them all for less than $3. Great to give as gifts, too.

 

The Cobble Cove mystery series is on sale for 99 cents per book. Don’t miss this holiday special running December 1, 2, and 3.  Purchase them all for less than $3. Great to give as gifts, too.

BOOK 1: A STONE’S THROW

A stone's throw-001(1) (1)

myBook.to/Stonesthrow2

The first book of the series featuring librarian Alicia Fairmont who travels to the small town of Cobble Cove, New York in search of answers about her dead husband’s family and the mysterious hit and run accident that killed him . . . or was it actually murder?

BOOK TWO: BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE

between a rock&hard place-001

myBook.to/CobbleCove2

It’s holiday time in the small town of Cobble Cove, New York, but the mood is anything but merry because three crimes have hit the town including the kidnapping of baby twins.

BOOK THREE: WRITTEN IN STONE Written In Stone-001

A dead body in the library’s mystery section . . . . A missing cat . . . . A strange, beautiful woman who has returned from Alicia’s husband’s past. How are these all connected? Find out in Book 3 of the Cobble Cove mystery series.

myBook.to/CC3ebook

Happy Reading! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

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On Word Count Writing Contests

Yeah, ok. I have a peeve with these. Just so’s you know. Why?

Because every time someone mentions one to me, I have flashbacks to that horrifying scene in The Shining (the movie), where Wendy comes down the stairs, sees Jack’s not around, goes to his writing table and thumbs through a box of what she expects is a manuscript for a novel.

It’s not.

It’s pages and pages of the same words, over and over, typed different ways, but always the same words, in the same order. “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”

As Jack asks, “Like it?”

Scariest scene in the entire movie. Aka “Jack doesn’t live here any more.”

I know successful authors who do these as a personal challenge, just to see if they can. After MUCH reworking, something good sometimes falls out of it, but I’ve never heard of anyone doing this sort of megawriting contest and taking their results straight into publication, unless they do self-publishing. They do not, in any case, submit the raw manuscript they started with.

The average publisher doesn’t care if you got the word count before the deadline. They will  ALWAYS favor quality over quantity.

If you want to challenge yourself by trying one of these, that’s awesome. I’m sincere about that. I could never try one of these things because my brain simply does not work that way. If you have the focus, intent, and speed, chances are you’ll meet your goal.

Just please do not consider your completion of that goal an automatic step to publication.

 


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Time for the Spooky Train!

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep Vol. 5

 

Halloween is the time for trick or treating. A day when ghosts, goblins, witches, and other ghoulish creatures walk the streets looking for treats. It’s also the time for our scare you right out of your wits anthology, Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Vol. 5

 

 

https://bookgoodies.com/a/B076ZSV13S

 

Chock full of stories guaranteed to make you shiver in fear and make sure the lights are on, you will enjoy these tales from a group of extremely talented authors.

 

 

https://youtu.be/zW6AMpe38Cw

 

“When the train comes, it all starts again.”

 

Sometimes bloody, habitually dark, always original.

 

On the Eve of All Hollows, anything is possible.

 

Live your life to the fullest

 

A devil’s playground

 

Something stalks the City of Angels.

 

Magic can take many forms.

 

Sometimes, the dead tell tales.

 

Demon meets sci-fi convention

 

After midnight, everything changes

 

Tales scary enough to have you watching your every move. Ten incredibly talented authors contributed to this feast of terror: Michael Gormley, David W. Thompson, Howard Gleichenhaus, A.A. Schenna, Jeffery Martin Botzenhart, Eric Ian Steele, Ken Newman, Jill Van Den Eng, Cyn Ley, and Jack Legg.

 

 

 

Along for the ride this year is Eerie Waters by K.C. Sprayberry, a tale that will have you shaking in your boots. Norse Gods, Hnicker, and a couple of teens are along for this supernatural ride that will add to your spooky holiday fun.


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BOO!!! Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep…if I dare

Just released!!!

Solstice Publishing’s annual scarefest, Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, is now available in Kindle edition on amazon.com.

Enjoy delicious shivers of horror as you read these short stories by some of our very talented authors. You’ll be tempted to leave the lights on 24/7!

I am one of those happy contributors to your nightmares, with a tale entitled (what else?) Plot Twist.

Frightful reading and a Blessed Samhain to you all!


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Enter bestselling fantasy author KateMarie Collins!

KateMarie Collins

 

Thanks for joining us today, KateMarie! I remember when you first got started and almost fell over in shock from all the good reviews. 🙂 What prompted you to write?

A bad thing that ended up very good! LOL. We’d been playing in a Dungeons & Dragons game for several years when the entire party was killed or imprisoned suddenly. Fast forward a few weeks, and my character from that game is resurrected in another one. Unable to explain what was going on at the table, I sat down the next morning and wrote what ended up being a short story. Everyone loved it, and asked for more. Once you let the Muse out like that, She doesn’t like being silenced. LOL

Why fantasy?

I love fantasy. It’s pretty much all I read as I grew up. It’s natural for me to write in the genre, and I tend to run the gamut of fantasy sub-genres. To be honest, I like being able to create my own worlds, gods, versions of magic!

What would you like to tell us about your books and stories? How can we find them?

All of my titles are available on Amazon. Print books are also available there and through a number of other venues like Powell’s Books and Barnes & Noble. [Solstice Publishing carries both Kindle and print versions of most of its titles.]

What’s the one thing that drives you crazy as a reader, the one thing you promised yourself never to do as a writer?

I hate books that pander to readers and talk down to them. I like what I call ‘intelligent reads’. Books where the author gives the reader credit for intelligence and doesn’t have to remind you every other page (or paragraph for that matter) that a character’s hair is red or they’re a cop. I like a book where something’s said in passing on page 10 and isn’t mentioned again until it becomes relevant. Because that’s what I like to read, that’s how I write.

Did you find writing a challenge at first? Do you still, or not?

At first, yes. I grew up in an environment where creativity wasn’t encouraged. It took me years to stop hearing the voice in my head telling me that I should give up because I would never measure up, let alone get published. I’ve all but silenced that voice, but it does try and resurface every now and then. When it does, I go look at my bookshelf and tell it what it can do with ‘not good enough’! LOL

How would you classify yourself—as an organized writer, or an intuitive one, or a mix of both? Why?

Intuitive, hands down. I don’t use spreadsheets with character or place names. I don’t outline. I get an idea, know how to start it and how I want it to finish it. From there, I let the characters tell me what happens in the middle. I think a lot of that stems from when I used to write with my eyes closed. The scene would play like a movie in my head and my fingers would find the words on the keyboard. It was the only way I could write without stopping every other word and spend 45 minutes debating if I was using the right adverb. When my own self-doubt was so crippling that you’re scared of how good your writing was, the only way to write was in a way where I couldn’t analyze every sentence or word.

Has there been anything about getting published that surprised you? Or anything about the process?

It took me time to get used to the idea that I was now a public person in respect to my books. When you’re raised to think that any sort of self-promoting or confidence is a sign of being a braggart/rudest sort of person, it’s hard to work around that type of programming. But the only way for me to succeed as an author is to take control of my image and be the type of author I’d want to meet.

Do you have anything you would like to share with aspiring writers?

It’s not a get quick rich scheme, that’s for sure. It’s work. Years and years of promoting and staying positive before you even start seeing sales come in. If you truly love to write, though, and are willing to both work with your publisher and promote, it’s worth it. This is one of the few industries where the nice guy finishes first. Take your ego out of the book, put it in a nice box on a shelf, and be ready for the best roller coaster you’ll ever ride.

Where can we find you and your books? 

BOOK LINKS

Daughter of Hauk:  myBook.to/Daughterofhauk

Son of Corse:  myBook.to/sonofcorse

Wielder of Tiren: myBook.to/WielderofTiren

The Raven Chronicles: myBook.to/theravenchronicles

 

Guarding Charon: myBook.to/guardingcharon

 

Arine’s Sanctuary: myBook.to/arinessanctuary

 

Kick the Can: myBook.to/kickthecan

Looking At The Light: myBook.to/lookingatthelight

A Stab at the Dark: myBook.to/astabatthedark

The Rose Box: myBook.to/therosebox

Permafrost:  myBook.to/permafrost

Challenges Met: myBook.to/challengesmet

Siaira: myBook.to/siaira

 

Fin’s Magic: myBook.to/finsmagic

Alaric’s Bow: myBook.to/alaricsbow

Emile’s Blade: myBook.to/emilesblade

Amari: Three Tales of Love and Triumph: myBook.to/amari1

 

Mark of the Successor: myBook.to/markofthesuccessor

Consort of the Successor: myBook.to/consortofthesuccessor

 

Twitter:  @DaughterHauk

FB:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/KateMarie-Collins/217255151699492

Blog:  http://www.katemariecollins.wordpress.com

Email: katemariecollins@gmail.com

 

 


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FREE DAYS AT AMAZON: Meet THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND!!!

THE OSSUARY PLAYGROUND AND OTHER UNEXPECTED TALES has been getting great reviews. Thank you, readers!!! 😀

Because the season of spookiness is upon us, and The Ossuary Playground is a collection of (mostly) paranormal tales, I’ve decided to celebrate my favorite time of the year by offering THREE FREE DAYS at http://www.amazon.com! The Kindle edition of the book is being offered for free starting Tuesday Oct 17 and running through Thursday Oct 19th. During these three days, the price will show as free/$0.00.  (If it hasn’t yet where you live, please check back–sometimes there’s a little catch up on amazon’s part.)

Get your copy and read the reviews! See what all the hurrah is about! And if you are so inclined, please share yours as well.

Spread the word, and happy reading! 😀

The Ossuary-001

 

 


 


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Interview With Thriller Author John DeBoer

 

It’s that time again! Meet another one of Solstice Publishing’s fantastic authors. Today, we meet John DeBoer.

Hi John! Thanks for stopping by! As you know, I’m always interested in what brings people into this field. What was your journey?

I enjoyed writing term papers in high school and college English classes. Thanks to an old-school teacher in the ninth grade who drilled the rules of grammar into me, and two literate parents, both of whom published non-fiction books, I did pretty well. But writing a book never occurred to me then. My focus was on medical school and then surgical training. During that time I wrote a few scientific articles for surgical journals, but the rules regarding their formats were strict; and they obviously weren’t fictional stories. Later on, when I was engaged in my surgical career, our annual Christmas letter gave me the opportunity to let my imagination loose in humorous takes on recaps of our family’s doings during the year and comments on world events. Friends and family enjoyed these letters. “You should write a book!” some of them said. So I did. And the bug that lay hidden deep within me for decades became an active infection!

What are your genres, and what led you to choose them?

That one’s easy. I’ve always been an active reader, especially of fiction, and my favorite class of stories has been the thriller. So that’s what I chose to write. And that’s all I write, though there are elements of mystery and romance in all of my novels.

What would you like to tell us about your books? How can we find them?

My novels involve conflicts between the good guys and bad guys. (“Guys” here is generic; my stories also have strong female characters.) And in all of my books, the good guys win. I’m never ambiguous about the conflict resolution! I’ve noticed some authors leave their stories open-ended, presumably to set up sequels, but to me, that cheats the reader. If I want to do a sequel (and I’ve done that), I’ll have a totally new plot involving those characters.

We have to love thoroughly satisfying resolutions! 🙂

All of my books can be seen on my website, www.novelsbyjohnldeboer.com and are available for purchase on Amazon.

Did you find writing a challenge at first? Do you still, or not?

I’m always challenged to come up with a compelling idea for a story. My first book relied on the axiom of, “Write what you know,” fictionalizing parts of my own life. The actual writing of it, though, other than deciding what would happen to my characters and how, was not an issue for me. I have learned a number of dos and don’ts of story composition along the way, however, thanks to editors and reviewers in my online critique group.

How would you classify yourself – as an organized writer or an intuitive one, or a mixture of both? Why?

I’d have to say I’m an intuitive writer. During my surgical career, I had to be both organized and intuitive. But writing my stories is never organized! I start with a vague idea of a plot, but I never know how it will end (other than the good guys win, of course). I may write down bullet points for what I want included in a chapter, but I don’t outline the whole novel. I saw this quote from E.L. Doctorow that applies to me: “Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the entire journey that way.” Yes! That’s how I write my books. I also don’t set a daily schedule – so many minutes, so many words. When the muse hits me, I write until she leaves or life gets in the way. This could be all day or less than an hour. Truth be told, most days I don’t write a lick. But a day doesn’t go by when I’m not thinking about how my plot will proceed. Mostly when I’m in the shower or trying to get to sleep at night!

I can’t answer the why part of the question. It’s just the way I am.

Has there been anything about getting published that surprised you? Or anything about the process?

I was surprised to learn how hard it was to get published! I had just written my first book – a super story, to my mind. “Let’s get this puppy published.” At the time, I was unaware of such independent publishers as Solstice and thought one needed an agent to pitch the book to a Big 5 publisher. I wasted a year trying to get agents to even respond to my queries, let alone sign me. I gave up and self-published it. And I thought that was what my publishing future would be thereafter. But then, through Preditors & Editors, I think, I came across a publisher that didn’t require an agent intermediary. Lo and behold, they offered me a contract! I was on cloud nine. A real publisher! It took two books to realize this press was not for me. They weren’t author-friendly and not really helpful at all. So I went looking for an alternative and found one for my next book. Again, it wasn’t a major publisher, but I could actually talk to the owner on the phone, and she was very helpful regarding marketing. Problems developed, though, that I won’t go into, and that’s when I found Solstice.

Another thing that surprised me along the way of this journey was the importance – no, necessity – of marketing. In the beginning, I naively thought once my book was out there, readers would eat it up. I didn’t even consider using social media, getting reviewers, or having a website. Sounds really stupid now, but I was uncomfortable having to be a salesman for my own wares.

Do you have anything you would like to share with aspiring writers?

Count me among those aspiring writers. I’m always aspiring! But I get your meaning, and I have eight novels published, so I do have some experience I can share. Bear in mind, these are my personal opinions; take them for what they’re worth.

First of all, aspiring writers, don’t go into writing with the idea this is a path to fame and fortune, or at the very least, to providing a living, though it can happen. If the money comes rolling in, you become a NYT bestselling author, and an A-list actor will play your protagonist in a film, great. The odds are stacked heavily against you, though.

Secondly, and it follows the first, you have to love writing, because that love may be all you get out of it. And let’s be frank. What drives that love is ego. A sense of accomplishment. If you plan to write your stories only for yourself to enjoy, that’s fine, but then you won’t need any advice from me, and this entire post will be a waste of your time. I’ll assume, though, you want your novels to be available to the public to like as well as you do, and to like you in the process. Ego projected! Regardless of financial reward – and as I suggested, that is likely to be relatively small – recognition of a job well done by unknown readers is very satisfying. Ego massaged!

My third bit of counsel is associated with the first two. You’ve written a book; a book you think deserves, if not widespread praise, at least a favorable reception. You’ve self-published it or landed a publisher. You’ve hyped it on Facebook and Twitter and have even garnered some five-star reviews. But the sales are terrible. Don’t give up! I know that advice is trite and usually given by those who have already made their mark in the literary world. Easy for them to say. But some of those writers toiled for years in the wilderness before being “discovered.” So that advice applies even for those who have yet to publish their first book, let alone worry about sales ranking. Your book is one among thousands of books published every week. It’s a crowded field, but that doesn’t mean you should follow Yogi Berra’s words of wisdom:  “Nobody goes there anymore; it’s too crowded.”

Okay, let’s assume you won’t give up being discovered. Besides optimism (and my encouragement), though, is there a good reason for you to persevere? Do you know your writing is sound, your stories attractive? That brings me to my fourth – and last (You thought it would never come, right?) – piece of advice: Get objective opinions of your creations before offering them for publication. I’m not talking friends and family here, obviously, but input from other writers and/or editors. Editors cost money, and you’re only getting one critique at a time, but a good one knows their way around competent storytelling. More bang for your buck would be a writing community, either in-person or online. I’ve workshopped all my novels in such a venue before presenting them for publication, and it’s been an extremely rewarding experience. I’ve become a much better writer because of it.

Keep writing, keep perfecting your craft, and keep getting your stories – and name – out there. Who knows? Your next novel could be the one that has Hollywood producers beating a path to your door.

Excellent advice!

Where can we find your books?

Books of mine published by Solstice Publishing:

Get the Picture? https://www.amazon.com/Get-Picture-John-L-DeBoer-ebook/dp/B00VKYI2VY

The Sincerest Form of Flattery  https://www.amazon.com/Sincerest-Form-Flattery-John-DeBoer-ebook/dp/B00W23X3CK

How Little We Know  https://www.amazon.com/How-Little-Know-John-DeBoer-ebook/dp/B01CO4618O

When the Reaper Comes  https://www.amazon.com/When-Reaper-Comes-John-DeBoer-ebook/dp/B01M9JQVO2

Social Media Links:

Facebook  www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/John-L-DeBoers-novels/713214712080731

Twitter  https://twitter.com/johnldeboer

Amazon author page  www.amazon.com/author/johnldeboer

Website  www.novelsbyjohnldeboer.com

Thank you John, and continued success!