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Author Spotlight

terriluvsbooks talks to N.D. Jackson

I met N.D. at an author takeover event. Her sense of humor is wild and I can see going out for a drink with her. We’d never stop laughing!

 

If you weren’t a writer, what would be your dream job? Political consultant/hitwoman. I have two degrees in political science and I would probably be gathering up dirt on political opponents and figuring out the best way to use it against them. I did it briefly before I realized I was too good at being bad and decided to go back to my first love, writing.

Where do your ideas come from? Pretty much everywhere. Sometimes a line on a TV show will spark something which leads to something else that turns into a story. Feels Like Love came about simply b/c one of the victims on Law & Order: SUV was a Julliard student. Then I created this whole background and decided to make her Amelia’s stepsister.

What is the best writing advice have you received and what would you advise new writers? Write what you know. My high school creative writing teacher told me that when I did my best to channel Sylvia Plath and Emily Dickinson (two of my favorite poets). Write what you know—first—so you can focus on telling the story. Then as you grow, branch out. And the more you know, the more you can write about. 😊

Tell us all the genres you write. I write primarily romance but I do have a political satire out and I have a political thriller in the works.

Do you consider yourself a pantser or a plotter? Yes! Hahaha, I always try to have an outline and usually, I get a pretty good one going before I even start writing. But somewhere along the way the characters stop listening to me and do their own thing.

Describe your dream vacation. I’ve been traveling quite a bit lately so at the moment, the cold, gray, drizzly moment, my dream vacation would be a month in Australia or New Zealand, but I’d settle for a week in Tenerife or some other tropical island.

How do you decide on names for your characters? I keep a running list of names I love, unique names and names that give off a certain personality trait. And I’m a name shortener so it has to be a name that, when shortened, reads easily. And if anyone comes across a unique name…I’m always accepting ideas!

Describe any writing rituals you use. When I get stuck, usually about the time my outline runs out and the characters are creating chaos in my head, I light an incense, lie on a yoga mat and crank my power singers like Nina Simone, Adele, Whitney Houston and Amy Winehouse until my mini-concert clears my brain or causes it to wander someplace interesting enough to kick my arse or knock loose an idea.

What snacks do you eat while you write? Either salt & vinegar chips, which I’m trying to get away from or baby carrots. Something about that crunch is soothing and makes me feel like I’m doing something productive. Do you listen to music? If so what kind? Yes! Mostly I listen to murder documentaries while I write (I know, weird) but music always comes in handy. If I need to think something through, it’s power singers but if I just need to get into a certain mood, I go for rock. Jimi Hendrix, Foo Fighters, Nirvana, Metallica. If I need nostalgia…Bob & Janis all the way!

What is the last book you read and why did you choose it? I just finished reading Jane Eyre for about the millionth time because I always enjoy reading it around Christmas time. It’s one of the few real books I still own and I feel like I find something new each time.

What was the first book you remember reading? I can’t say which came first that I actually remember but it was either Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret or a Babysitter’s Club book. Both were important to me for different reasons, but I have a much clearer memory of Judy Blume so I’d say that. Me and Margaret had the opposite problem and despite the fact I’d read the story more than a decade (maybe two) after it had been published, it really resonated with me. For all the wrong reasons, my very religious grandmother would tell you.

You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they and why? That’s a difficult one, but I’ll try.

Pride & Prejudice because it’s a classic, always hilarious and Jane Austen

Team of Rivals because it is an excellent book and a reminder that sometimes the best people to have on your team are the ones you least expect.

Jane Eyre because I’ve read it every year since I was 18.

The Collected Works of William Shakespeare because he is the greatest storyteller of all time.

Mind Hunter because John Douglas is a genius and his insight into the minds of killers, gives great insight to human behavior full stop. A compelling and academic read yes, but I love it. Don’t judge 😛

What motivates you to travel as much as you do and live in so many places? When I was young I always wanted to see the world, visit all the places I read about. I loved walking through the gardens of Versailles knowing Marie Antoinette walked the same path and standing where the wall used to divide a country in Berlin. I am obsessed with history and seeing it all for myself, and my husband is happy to oblige. Travelling is like the best field trip each time, you get to immerse yourself in a culture and experience it fully…for a time.

You said that all of life’s answers could be found in an episode of Dawson’s Creek. You have to expound on this a little more. Hahahaha, well as a teen I was a wee bit obsessed with the show. In college I would rush home from Mock Trial practice just to watch it and lock out any friends who didn’t make it before Paula Cole started belting out the theme song. It became a running thing in the dorm and each time one of my dormmates (or anyone else) had a problem, romantic or otherwise, I’d find a corresponding episode to guide them. For example, the topic of soul mates. Dawson and Joey were CLEARLY soul mates, but not in a romantic way. So the lesson is that your soulmate might not be your HEA.

Most of the towns where you have lived are big cities, yet your series, Mustang Prairie takes place in a small town. What is it about small towns that made you choose that as your setting? I went to college in a very small town in central Illinois and it was great. I think it allowed me and my friends to be silly college kids without facing the same big city style consequences. A group of girls could stumble home drunk without ‘really’ worrying because the town was so damn small. The university made up 50% of the population to give you a hint. I love what big cities have to offer—nightlife, museums, 24 hour food of every cuisine—but I like the quiet of small towns. I’m just a bit too nonconformist for small town life but I love it.

Favorite Judy Blume book? Easy, Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret. I grew up religious but I started have issues/questions around the age of 10 when I discovered this book. She was looking for religion and I was trying to find a way to hang on to mine. That didn’t happen but this book will always be special to me for that reason.

You can have anything you want for your “last supper” what will it be? Ooooh that’s a great question! I am such a foodie and now that I’ve gone vegan I have to get creative. But I do love pretty much all Asian cuisine so I’d probably say some type of curry noodle dish, well any curry noodle dish really.

 

N.D. is a very busy lady and has a ton of great books to check out. You can find them on Amazon. Thank you for joining us here at terriluvsbooks.

terriluvsbooks talks to Katherine McIntyre

I met Katherine after I read her book Forged Alliances. You can read my review here.

 

 

1.      If you weren’t a writer, what would be your dream job?

I’ve always found psychology interesting. If writing hadn’t been my number one goal since my childhood years, I would’ve been interested in pursuing a career as a therapist.

2.      Where do your ideas come from?

My ideas come from so many different sources. Sometimes, it’s a movie or book that fills my creative well with so many feelings that I need to write. Other times, it’s issues near and dear to my heart that drive that zeal. The adventures I go on, the people I spend time with, the personal stories I hear all fuel my story machine.

3.      What is the best writing advice have you received and what would you advise new writers?

I’ve received a lot of fantastic advice from dozens of authors, but one of my favorite phrases that stuck out from this past year was my friend and fellow author Landra Graf reminding me that this business is a marathon, not a sprint. There is a LOT of writing advice floating out there, but so much changes from person to person. This quote resonated, because it’s a good reminder regarding the industry.

4.      Tell us all the genres you write.

While I love genre hopping, I gravitate most towards young adult, urban fantasy, and paranormal romance. They also happen to be my favorite genres to read, so I think there’s some symmetry there. While I adore a good romance, I am too much of a mythology and fantasy addict to not weave some sort of paranormal plot into the mix.

5.      Do you consider yourself a pantser or a plotter?

Hands down, I’m a pantser. I’ve seen the magnificent pages and pages of plots that plotters come up with and my shoestring, couple bullet points before I plunge in would make them cry.

6.      Describe your dream vacation.

My favorite vacation I’ve taken was my honeymoon where we went to Ireland. It combined all of my favorite aspects of a trip: lots of hiking, unique architecture and history, and delicious food. Next places on my list are Italy, France, and Iceland, though there are plenty of other places I would love to visit. Whenever I travel, I love soaking in what makes each area unique—I feel like each time I expand my horizon like that I have so much more fodder for my own stories.

7.      How do you decide on names for your characters?

It’s a toss-up. Lineage is a huge factor, though I have to admit, I have a penchant for Irish names. Since I’m from a big Irish family, it’s not that surprising. I’ve definitely spent time perusing names on the baby websites to find the perfect ones for my characters.

8.      Describe any writing rituals you use.

My main writing ritual before I set down on to write my manuscript is a piping hot cup of coffee (or tea!) and I cue up my Spotify playlist—I make a different one for each manuscript to capture the vibe of the book.

9.      What snacks do you eat while you write? Do you listen to music? If so what kind?

I don’t usually snack while I write because I usually break for food if I happen to be writing through a mealtime. Those breaks are important, otherwise I’d go crazy! I always, always listen to music though. My most recent playlists included a fun alternative western playlist for Outlier Heir, a YA space opera, and a rockabilly one for Captured Memories which just came out in October. My taste is wildly all over the place, and I switch from top 40 to industrial in a heartbeat.

10.  What is the last book you read and why did you choose it?

The last book I read was Clean Sweep by Ilona Andrews. I have a couple must-read authors that I’m always in the mood for, and I had been wanting to start the Innkeeper Chronicles for awhile now! Of course, it’s urban fantasy veering into paranormal romance, which is some of my favorite stuff!

11.  What was the first book you remember reading?

I forget what my first book was, but one of my earliest was If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. I still see that one on the shelves, and it warms my heart.

12.  You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they and why?

Oh god, that’s so tough. I change up what I read so often that it’s really difficult to choose. Though, there are a couple ones I’ve reread in the past couple years that I could reread over and over again. Currently, I’d say Magic Burns by Ilona Andrews, A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas, Lover Awakened by JR Ward, Caressed by Ice by Nalini Singh, and Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater. All of those are wildly re-readable for me and all for different reasons. I loved A Court of Mist and Fury so much I have a quote from it tattooed on my back.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13.  What attracts you to steampunk?

The versatility of the genre. I love how open-ended it is, a big playground to stomp around in. I adore the aesthetic as well and having worked at events like Steampunk World’s Fair for years now, I’ve seen so many unique inventions and costumes that it’s hard not to fall in love with steampunk.

14.  Why do you call yourself an “eternal geek”?

I’ve been a geek as long as I can remember. When I fall in love with something—whether it’s a TV show, a book series, or a movie franchise, I fall hard. I’ve dabbled in almost anything labeled geek over the years, whether it be Magic the Gathering, live action role playing (White Wolf games were always my favorite), Dungeons and Dragons, Bioware games, and DC comics. I’m always jumping to some new hobby or interest, so I doubt my geekiness is going to die out any time soon.

15.  How much of you is in your characters?

While I don’t actively try to model characters after myself, I leave aspects in with each lead that I write. Some protagonists have my sense of humor, others my honesty and impatience. I’ve written some that I thought were incredibly different from me, only to realize we shared the same sense of responsibility and duty. A lot of my characters have traits from different friends as well, not anything I consciously try for, but a lot of times they just work their way in.

16.  You use your hometown, Philadelphia, in your stories. Have you ever had a fan from Philly talk about your books with you?

One of my favorite things with my Philadelphia Coven Chronicles series is the actual landmarks I use in the book, some of which have turned into something magical. I’ve had a lot of comments from Philly readers who have loved seeing the places from their hometown in fiction, especially twisted into something fae and magic. I know as a reader, that’s something I adore with urban fantasy and paranormal romance.

17.  Tell us about the writer services you offer.

For editing, I offer beta reading services as well as content editing for those looking to polish their manuscript into shape!

https://katherine-mcintyre.com/editing-services/content-editing/

I also offer editing services for board game rulebooks, as I’m an avid board gamer and my husband and I are working on our own board game company.

https://katherine-mcintyre.com/editing-services/board-game-editing/

terriluvsbooks talks with Alyne Hart

I met Alyne, last year through Twitter. What has impressed me the most is that no matter what she is always smiling and always finds a reason to laugh. This interview was a lot of fun for me.
1. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your dream job? Artist. I’ve always loved to draw and paint (watercolors mostly) and it’s actually what I set out to do in my youth. I got accepted into FIDM – fashion institute of design and merchandising. Life happened, and I didn’t attend, but it’s always been a passion.
2. Where do your ideas come from? EVERYWHERE. Dreams, images, sometimes just little lines from poems or quotes. The Island came to me in a dream. Rocking Autumn started from me saying “all men are the same” and then it quickly wove itself into a story. The book I am writing currently came from a little quote I saw that said “he taught her how to live, she taught him how to love” and it turned itself into a novel.
3. What is the best writing advice have you received and what would you advise new writers? To be willing to be split wide open and write from your heart. I will probably never write to market. I don’t write because I want to be on the New York Times list, I write because I have stories inside of me. My advice to new writers would be the exact same. Don’t write for money, write because you love to.
4. Tell us all the genres you write. Currently, Contemporary Romance. However, I do plan to branch off into Contemporary fiction and possibly Paranormal Romance. I have a lot more in my head than just kissing books 😉
5. Do you consider yourself a pantser or a plotter? Both. The Island was complete pantsting. But I am a reformed pantster and I now plot HEAVILY before I go in and write. It keeps me on track and keeps me from having stories fall flat or not get finished. I plot out my story, but I let the chapters within my plotting happen as they may.
6. Describe your dream vacation. I’ve always dreamed of going to Bali and spending a month just living peacefully for a month or two and maybe even quieting my mind for awhile.
7. How do you decide on names for your characters? I search baby name sights and I have a HUGE list of names in a notebook. When I develop my character I go to my list and usually, the name just jumps out at me as what would suit them.
8. Describe any writing rituals you use. My only writing ritual is this. Big cup of green tea, a playlist I have designed for each book, scented candles or wax melts that put me in the mood and no internet. When I get stuck, I get in the bathtub. It’s about the only time I stop thinking, and I swear some of my best scenes have come to me in the tub.
9. What snacks do you eat while you write? Do you listen to music? If so what kind? I try not to snack while I write because it becomes mindless eating. I sip tea and listen to music. Each book is different. For Rocking Autumn it was a lot of rock music. For the one I am doing now it’s a softer indie vibe.
10.  What is the last book you read and why did you choose it? The last book I read was Wednesday by Kendall Ryan. I chose it because Kendall is one of my romance writer heroes and it had great reviews. Plus it seemed very emotional, and I was curious about the storyline.
11. What was the first book you remember reading? Little House on the Prairie.
12.  You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they and why? OH MY GOSH. Different Seasons, Stephen King. Survivor, Chuck Palahniuk. The Bell Jar, Sylvia Plath. Where the Heart Is, Billie Letts. Twilight, Stephanie Meyer. I’m all over the place, I know!
13.  Your other job is at the garden center. Have you always enjoyed the outside and working with plants? Is it safe to say you have a green thumb? I do not have a green thumb! Or least,  I didn’t before I accepted that position. Before I started working at the store I am at now I had been the Store Manager of a Pier One and a Bath and Bodyworks. It was because of those experiences that my store manager wanted me to take on the garden center – as it’s kind of it’s own store within our store, and the square footage and seasonal changes were something I had experience in. I knew nothing about plants, so I had the associates in my area teach me and every year that goes by I learn a little more.
14. I’m writing a story about you. What should the title be and why? “I shouldn’t have said that” – I have no filter, I don’t mince words and I am brutally honest. I wind up with my foot in my mouth more often than I would like!
15. I know you like coffee. What is your favorite blend and how do you drink it? Regular old dark roast with cream!
16. I want to take you and one person from history as your guest. Who will you invite and why? Anne Frank. When I was a little girl I read The Diary of Anne Frank and it’s one of those things that has always stuck with me.
17. If you could live in another time period which one would you choose and why? The 20’s. The culture and fashion have always spoken to me. If reincarnation is real, then I lived in the twenties – and I lived it up.

THE ISLAND:

THREE PEOPLE. ONE RELATIONSHIP.
For 31 year old Amie Graham, life on the island was supposed to be simpler – simpler than the life and problems she left behind. Less complicated and less dramatic than life back home. That was the plan anyway.
But fate, it seems, has a sense of humor and it throws a complication or two right in her path.
Complication one, Michael.
If you could cross a model with a football player, you’d get Michael, at least how Amie sees him. Long dark blonde hair, packed with rounded muscles and well over six feet tall, he’s gorgeous, he’s funny, sweet and vulnerable. He’s her own Greek god among men, and she finds herself falling in love with him.
Complication two, Gabe. 
Gabe is beautiful, serene and intelligent, and Amie finds herself drawn to him. With his curly brown hair, soulful green eyes and olive skin decorated with tattoos and piercings – she finds herself falling in love with him also.
The other problem? They’re best friends – and they’re in love with her too. Can three people really love each other, or is the air of the island just messing with their hearts and minds?
WARNING. This is a MFM romance. While this book focuses heavily on the emotions and relationship(s) there is plenty of steam! If this is your cup of tea, you should know there is no MM action. It’s all about Amie, and her love of these two hot, loveable, sexy men.

Rocking Autumn: A Small Town, Second Chance Romance (The Homecoming Series Book 1)

Autumn Brooks knows one thing for certain.
All. Men. Are. The. Same.
Especially guys like Jaxon West. Sexy smile. Bright blue eyes and perfectly tousled jet-black hair.
You know what guys like that are? Nothing but trouble.
And he’s broken her heart once already.
Jaxon West may not know a lot of things. But he knows one thing for certain. He will get Autumn Jane Brooks back.
Autumn and Jax were “that couple” in high school. Always together and so in love. They were supposed to be together forever until something drove them apart. Jax left without so much as a goodbye, leaving Autumn heartbroken and alone.
Autumn moved on, running a bookstore and popular bakery in the charming small town of Walla Walla, Jax set out to pursue his dreams of becoming a rock star in Chicago.
For Jax and his band, The Living Room Sessions, breaking into the music business was hard. And no matter how hard he tried, he never could get Autumn out of his mind. Ten years later, almost to the day, he’s back, and he’s determined to win her heart. An effort she won’t make easy on him. But when he finally does, can their relationship survive long distance? Can it survive the secret he’s keeping from her? Does this second chance get a happily ever after?

Author Note: This book contains mature subject content including: steamy sex, frequent use of F-bombs and alcohol use. Although it is part of a series, there is no cliffhanger. Please also note, this is a long distance relationship where the couple is together, but separate half of the time.

 

Thank you Alyne for talking with us here at terriluvsbooks.

C.A. Caskabel Stops By terriluvsbooks

Months ago, I reviewed a book I found from NetGalley. If you haven’t read the book, let me tell you it’s one of those books that I still kinda think about once in awhile. I have the rest of the series in my queue and it’s one I will be reading once I catch up a little.

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The first question I have to ask you is who designed that book cover and where did the concept come from (it gives me the willies while drawing me in at the same time.) 

The cover was designed by Chris Koutroulos, a professional graphics designer. I already had an idea of what I wanted, but I got something better than what I expected. The concept comes from the book and the story of the Ouna-Mas, the priestesses of the Tribe. The picture makes the reader think “fantasy, ” but this is an almost realistic picture.

Everybody keeps telling me that this looks that woman from Star Trek or the other from Guardians of the Galaxy etc. Yet, the inspiration comes directly from history. There were many priestesses or women of status from Ancient Egypt to Hunnish tribes, European tribes, etc. with long heads. Their heads were wrapped with cloth from when they were babies and took on that shape. One can find many pictures and skulls (in museums). Just google “skull elongation” for more willies.

On your site, you mention that you started writing Drakon in 2013 and it was 400,000 words. When you started, did you plan on it being that many words or did it just grow organically? Did you always plan on breaking it into four parts? More importantly, where did you get the idea for this story?

All four books are one story, one novel, but as a debut author, I could not make a 400k debut. I preferred to release it in four parts and keep the price as close to zero for the first part. It makes it easier for the reader to try an unknown author. I never planned on four books or 400K words. This is what the story demanded as it developed. As for the size, the book kept increasing with every iteration of editing. I reread it many times, and I discovered that the story needed to be bigger.

About the idea for this story: I worked backward from a dream I had a long time ago. It was quite a powerful dream (very late dinner I guess), and it stayed with me. Then I found the motivation of the story. What would you do if you are born on the wrong side of the battle? If you are raised simply to join an army of fanatics? What does it take to overcome all the brainwashing, what is the price to pay for doing the “right” thing? There are many YA novels where a 16-year-old rebels and knows all the right things to do immediately. This book is more complicated and I would never call it YA.  It follows a man through a twenty-year period. Good and evil fight within the man on every page.

You call yourself a “technology entrepreneur.” What do you mean by that and what areas of tech have you worked? How did the lessons you learn from these entrepreneurial experiences help you with the business side of writing?

I have worked in software development, technology platforms for advertising and marketing, and more recently fintech and clean energy. I was always closer to the marketing, presentation side of the business so I was in charge of crafting the story. The challenge was similar, but the mechanics of a business presentation vs. a fantasy novel are completely different.

In a post on your site dated May 3, 2017, you mention you used a lot of history books to help you develop this story, and most of it was Middle Eastern and Eastern. Which books helped you the most? Tell us a little about the research process you went through for this story. 

Drakon is a story about a young man (Da-Ren) growing up in a society which comes as close as possible to purely evil. A society where most women, and men, are used by one charismatic madman; a regime driven by prejudice, religious fanaticism and hatred. I could find regimes even from the twentieth century that fit the bill yet I wanted to place it as far away as possible from common historical events. So I chose the period of the dark ages of the Eastern Roman Empire around 4th and 5th century AD and found a lot of motivation by reading about the Hunnish tribes and other barbaric tribes that invaded Europe at that time. And then I wrote the story from the side of the barbarians rather than the “good guys.” This is still fantasy though, in the sense that the tribe I describe is made up through a collage of fact and fiction. They are the Huns, they are much more fun.

In the same post, you mention your manufacturing engineering background and the Japanese school of thought (Kaizen, right? My husband works in the same field so I have listened to many hours on this topic). This is the first time I’ve seen anyone relate this to a writing career. What does this look like and what is your process?

I am referring to a continuous improvement process when one is never satisfied with the quality of the end result and keeps tweaking it to reach the best possible quality. The truth is that writing even an ok novel is an amazing accomplishment that takes a lot of time. If you want to do something better than average, you have to have the courage to edit and edit and read and edit. Not three times, closer to thirty.

What plans do you have for future books?

I am completing the Drakon series with Book IV that will be released sometime before end of 2017.  I have a very good idea of the next two series I am planning to write and I will start right away in 2018.

I”ll buy lunch for you and any author or character from a book. Who’s coming with us?

Neil Gaiman is a favorite not only as an author but also as somebody that has such an amazing breadth of stories and things to discuss. And he doesn’t seem to eat much so it works budget wise.

What are you reading right now or what was the last book you read?

Bone Swans by C.S.E. Cooney. Amazing, poetic prose. Highly recommended (and I don’t know the author).

(This is just a fun crazy question). If you could wear any kind of costume for Halloween, what would it be and why?

I am not a lot into costumes so I bought a plain black Game of Thrones t-shirt with the quote “A man has no costume” paraphrasing the Faceless Man (“a man has no name”)

You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?

Dune (and Dune 2), because it is the first fantasy/scifi/yet so real that I fell in love with.

The Iliad (I am Greek after all, despite my pen name, and there are many interesting characters in there.)

Love in the Time of Cholera (because every book I want to write is a love story in one way or another)

Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins (so much fun)

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (because I am predicting she is going to win the Nobel Prize tomorrow)

 

C.A. Caskabel started writing Drakon in 2013 and completed the 400,000-word epic fantasy novel in 2016. He split Drakon into four books which he will release within 2017, he promises. After all, he is eager to start working on the next novel. C.A. is also the founder of an indie publisher of picture books and fantasy fiction.
Before 2013, C.A. was a serial technology entrepreneur. He studied at Boston and Brown University. He calls Boston, New York, Providence, San Francisco, London, and Athens (and in general Planet Earth) home.

Foster An Author #3- M.M. Koening

 

M. M. Koenig enjoys being active and has a variety of interests that coincide with her passion for life. Always one to try new things, she has acquired a variety of skills. Her sarcastic nature and multitude of experiences tend to find their way into her novels. When she has free time and isn’t writing, she spends as much time as she can with friends and family. To fuel her soul, she is constantly looking for new music, movies, and books to keep the writer’s block at bay.

 

 

Find M. M. Koenig online
http://www.mmkoenig.com
https://www.facebook.com/authormmkoenig/
https://twitter.com/M_M_Koenig
https://www.pinterest.com/koen0092/
https://instagram.com/mmkoenig/
http://www.tsu.co/mmkoenig
https://www.amazon.com/M.-M.-%20Koenig/e/B00HBH4L7I

M.M. Koenig is sponsoring a giveaway ebooks for the S&L Series, a $10 Amazon GC, and S&L swag 

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1. If you had a free day with no responsibilities and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do?

If my only mission is to enjoy myself, I’d spend the day with my best friend and her kiddos and/or my family.  They are my biggest supporters and pick me up when life kicks me down.  I love being with them and listening to them laugh and tell jokes, so we could really be doing anything and I enjoy myself.  What I do love doing the most is trying something new or going to a place I haven’t seen before with them.  I love experiencing new things with the people I hold dearest to my heart.
2. Describe your writing process.
I’m what they call a fly by the seat of your pants kind of writer.  I always know the major plot points for my books, but a lot of times scenes will change as I’m writing them because the characters will take me in a different direction.  I rather enjoy it as it feeds into the type of suspense I enjoy writing.
3. I will take you and any author you want out to dinner. Who will you invite and what will we talk about?
I would love an opportunity to sit down and have dinner with Rebecca Donovan.  Her Breathing series not only inspired me to begin writing again, but it also struck on a very personal chord as well.  I’d love to talk all things books with her and what inspired her to write Emma and Evan’s story.  It’s such a beautiful story and I highly recommend it.
4. What is the best writing advice you ever received?
Never be afraid of criticism.  Write without Fear.  Edit without Mercy.  Listen to everything your critique partner and beta readers advise you after they read.  Know that not everyone who reads your books won’t always like them and that’s okay.  No two people will ever read the read a book the same way.
5. You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?
First, this is a very hard question.  I truly can’t narrow it down to five since almost everything I read is in a series so I’ll supplement with my top five book series.
The Breathing Series – Rebecca Donovan
Hopeless/Losing Hope – Colleen Hoover
The Avoiding Series – K.A. Linde
Easy/Breakable – Tammara Webber
The Neighbor From Hell Series – R.L Mathewson

Foster An Author #3- Meet NAK Baldron

Nicholi (N.A.K. Baldron) is an author and avid reader. He likes stories that take place in fictional worlds, with memorable characters.

He spends his days debating between whether it’s coffee or tea time, and pecking away at his keyboard to produce stories for his readers. He can be found strolling through one of the many wooded areas in the small town outside of Austin, Texas that he calls home.

If he could have any power, it would be the power to control time; then he could freeze it and find enough reading time. One of his deepest regrets in life, is knowing he’ll never get around to reading all the books on his to be read list.

Knowing how precious reading time is, he’s always honored when his readers choose to spend their time on his stories.

NAK is sponsoring a giveaway ebook copy of Aether Walker Queens Gambit

 

Aether Walker: Game Changer (Free on all platforms)

Only few can see them for what they really are, Kandice is in the fight of her life to get revenge on the one that killed her mother. Living a double life as a college student by day, and Huntress by night is slowly wearing her down. But she is determined to get her revenge or die trying.”

 

Aether Walker: Queen’s Gambit (Amazon Exclusive & KU)

 

Living on the road hunting Aether Walkers isn’t as glamorous as Kandice hoped it would be. From rundown motels to abandon houses, heading back to her life in Austin is a serious consideration for her until the Council steps in to give her the answers she has been looking for. However she soon discovers it comes at the price of her freedom.

Follow Kandice as she steps into uncharted territory in her relationship with Lance while juggling the demands of the Council.”

 

Aether Walker: Blake’s Story

After witnessing his mother’s horrific death Blake finds himself committed against his will for what he thinks he saw. Were those creatures real or a figment of his imagination? Read through Blake’s journal as he tries to unravel the events and learn the truth about what happened to his mother.

 

 

 

 

1. If you had a free day with no responsibilities and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do?

– Drink Coffee, Read, Drink Tea, Read, and finish the day by watching a family movie with my daughter. 2. Describe your writing process. – I always write in chronological order, and I usually start with no outline. I just write the characters and see what happens until about

2. Describe your writing process.

– I always write in chronological order, and I usually start with no outline. I just write the characters and see what happens until about halfway through. Then I will have to sit down and plot out the story so I can finish it.

3. I will take you and any author you want out to dinner. Who will you invite and what will we talk about?

– Scott Lynch, and we’d discuss nerd stuff and politics. I would definitly have to ask him who the builders were.

4. What is the best writing advice you ever received?

– Don’t compare your first draft to someone else’s finished novel.

5. You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?

Lord of the RingsItDuneHarry Potter & the Order of the PhoenixThe Republic of Thieves

 

Foster An Author #3- Meet S.F. Benson

 

SF Benson is a native of Detroit, Michigan and a graduate of Western Michigan University, SF has fed her creative brain through a variety of jobs from customer service to working with animals. Although the work title has changed, one thing remained true—her desire to be a writer. As a kid she could often be found writing stories or with a book in her hand. It didn’t matter where the location, SF could be found reading (even at the beach).

Her debut novel, Regress—a dystopian set in her home state—developed from a dream. When she’s not concocting tales in her sleep, SF has been known to come up with entire dialogues in the shower.

SF prefers writing stories which answer the “what if” question in life. Her protagonists are strong and diverse set in post-apocalyptic or paranormal worlds.

S.F. Benson has sponsored a giveaway of a signed paperback of any of her books.

Find me on Radish Fiction!

Social media links:

Website: https://www.authorsfbenson.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BensonSF/

Facebook Readers Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/273428139797021/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BensonShantella

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15019441.S_F_Benson

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/SFBenson/e/B01DI9Z58Q/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/sf-benson

Instagram: @authorsfbenson

 

Rebel: the Alliance Chronicles, Book Four

“Some secrets are more costly than others.”

Tru Shepard holds the key—a highly coveted piece of tech—in the palm of her hand.

Everyone in the American Republic has secrets—some innocent and some dangerous.

Tru Shepard, a Creative, thinks she’s fighting to maintain her identity. She soon learns that the struggle is much bigger, and she holds the key.

Zared Aoki, the guy she loves, thinks he’s fighting for happiness. The ghosts from his past are supposed to be behind him, but sometimes the past shows up when you least expect it.

In a world built on secrecy, will the truth set you free?

Amazon

 

Blessed Hearts: Hearts Duology, Book Two

He went to Hell…for her.

Cash Martin, tattoo artist and incubus, doesn’t do relationships. Late night debauchery with as many females as he can muster suits him just fine. He’s following the golden rule: incubi don’t fall in love.

Until her.

Qadira, fifth daughter of Al-Qadir, is a djinniyah on the run from an arranged marriage. She’s passing through town when she runs into the one creature she abhors—an incubus.

When someone starts mutilating humans in Falls Creek, suspicion falls on Qadira. Cash provides an alibi and a spark is ignited. The situation becomes complicated when he must travel to Hell to rescue her.

Cash may have put his soul on the line for Qadira, but will he give her his heart?

Blessed Hearts is a New Adult standalone in the Hearts Duology.

Amazon

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

1. If you had a free day with no responsibilities and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do?

A free day with no responsibilities…I’d probably marathon my favorite Marvel/DC Comics movies or dive into a book and read it from beginning to end.

2. Describe your writing process.
I’m a recovering pantser. I used to plan but didn’t outline. Now I do both. After arriving at an idea, I like to write out a summary–basically, a third person synopsis of everything that will happen. Then I come up with an outline for each act (I write in three acts) and I use a timeline I found on www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com. I’ll develop a secret Pinterest board with characters and setting pictures. In the planning stage I’ve already fleshed out my characters. Sometimes I interview them. Other times I just write out (in a notebook) the relevant things about them. After all that’s done, it’s time to draft. I set an overall word count for the story and then divide that by how many chapters I’m shooting for. That word count gets divided by 30. I try to draft in a month and then I put the book down for a few months before I revise and get into the editing process.
3. I will take you and any author you want out to dinner. Who will you invite and what will we talk about? 
Let’s invite George R.R. Martin. I want to talk about his world building for his books.
4. What is the best writing advice you ever received?
Keep writing and just do it. I know those are very cliche, but they are relevant for me. At one point, I stopped writing and didn’t pick it up again for 20 years.
5. You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?
Man, that’s hard. Let’s see… Grimm’s Fairy Tales, The Encyclopedia of Witchcraft (comes in handy for writing PNR), Sarah J. Maas’ Court of Wings and Ruin, Stephen King’s On Writing, and my first book Regress (a reminder of what I can do when I just keep writing).

Meet the Authors- Foster An Author 3, 2017

This is my first year participating in Foster An Author hosted by Jo & Isalovesbooks with Read Reveiw Repeat. I’m lucky enough to be hosting three authors and so it is my pleasure to introduce you to these great people.

 

Nicholi (N.A.K. Baldron) is an author and avid reader. He likes stories that take place in fictional worlds, with memorable characters.

He spends his days debating between whether it’s coffee or tea time, and pecking away at his keyboard to produce stories for his readers. He can be found strolling through one of the many wooded areas in the small town outside of Austin, Texas that he calls home.

If he could have any power, it would be the power to control time; then he could freeze it and find enough reading time. One of his deepest regrets in life is knowing he’ll never get around to reading all the books on his to be read list.

Knowing how precious reading time is, he’s always honored when his readers choose to spend their time on his stories.

 

NAK is sponsoring a giveaway ebook copy of Aether Walker Queens Gambit (open 10-17-17)

 

S.F. Benson is a native of Detroit, Michigan and a graduate of Western Michigan University, SF has fed her creative brain through a variety of jobs from customer service to working with animals. Although the work title has changed, one thing remained true—her desire to be a writer. As a kid she could often be found writing stories or with a book in her hand. It didn’t matter where the location, SF could be found reading (even at the beach).

Her debut novel, Regress—a dystopian set in her home state—developed from a dream. When she’s not concocting tales in her sleep, SF has been known to come up with entire dialogues in the shower.

SF prefers writing stories which answer the “what if” question in life. Her protagonists are strong and diverse set in post-apocalyptic or paranormal worlds.

Find me on Radish Fiction!

Social media links:

Website: https://www.authorsfbenson.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BensonSF/

Facebook Readers Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/273428139797021/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BensonShantella

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15019441.S_F_Benson

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/SFBenson/e/B01DI9Z58Q/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/sf-benson

Instagram: @authorsfbenson

S.F. Benson has sponsored a giveaway of a signed paperback of any of her books.

 

 

M. M. Koenig enjoys being active and has a variety of interests that coincide with her passion for life. Always one to try new things, she has acquired a variety of skills. Her sarcastic nature and multitude of experiences tend to find their way into her novels.

When she has free time and isn’t writing, she spends as much time as she can with friends and family. To fuel her soul, she is constantly looking for new music, movies, and books to keep the writer’s block at bay.

 

Find M. M. Koenig online:

http://www.mmkoenig.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-M-M-Koenig/734651516551415

https://twitter.com/M_M_Koenig

https://www.pinterest.com/koen0092/

https://instagram.com/mmkoenig/

http://www.tsu.co/mmkoenig

http://www.amazon.com/M.-M.-Koenig/e/B00HBH4L7I/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

M.M. Koenig is sponsoring a giveaway ebooks for the S&L Series, a $10 Amazon GC, and S&L swag (open 10-17)

Let’s Chat- Cassy Roop

In your book, Find Your Strong: How I changed my MIND to change my BODY and heal my HEART, you talk about how everything seemed to click and you knew it was time to change your life and take care of you. Can you tell us a little about led you to that point and what that moment was like?
I was so focused on building Pink Ink that I sort of lost focus on myself. I found myself eating every meal behind my computer. I ate whatever was cheap and fast and that I could scarf down in a matter of minutes. I was feeding my body, not fueling it. My “aha” moment came when I saw the pictures of me at my Mom’s wedding. I knew then something needed to change otherwise, I would continue down a path of self-destruction.
Why was it important to you to share this with others?
I felt it was important for me to share my story with others because I know there are others out there that feel the same struggles I have. I knew there were others out there that have a food addiction like I do and wanted to be living proof that you can take charge of your addiction and your life.
What impressed me the most while reading your book is your ability to juggle a lot of balls at once. You are a fitness instructor, a graphic designer, a mother and a wife? How do you get it all done and what advice do you have for the readers?
Some days are harder than others. I drink a LOT of coffee lol. I find, though, its all about balance. I lead a very busy and active life so time management is very important. You have to set your priorities and go from there. What is the most important thing that needs to be done that day? Then just go down your list. Do I get everything done I’m supposed to every day? Of course not. But I try and that’s really all you can ask of yourself.
What’s your favorite exercise move and why?
My favorite exercise is taking a class. I love that group fitness classes gives you variety. It’s something new every class. The class may have the same structure, but there is different choreography and different music. It also helps keep your body guessing when you do different things instead of the same exercises every day.
When you look in the mirror now, what do you like the most about what you see?
My confidence. I can actually look in the mirror now and say that I love myself. Does my brain still want to bring up nasty thoughts about myself? Of course. But I try to push those away and focus on the good things 🙂
What is Pink Ink Designs? How did it get started? What’s your favorite part of graphic design and working with authors?
Pink Ink Designs is a graphic, print and web design company with a strong focus in book cover design, author branding, and interior book formatting. I got started because I was an author first. I started playing around with making my own teasers and then eventually covers. I tried my hand at my own formatting. I found that I enjoyed it so much that I went to school for it and got my degree in graphic design. My favorite part would be getting to hold a physical copy of a book in my hands. A physical piece that proves I helped someone achieve their dream.
This is not your first book, but definitely your most personal. How is autobiographical writing different for you than fiction writing? Tell us about your fiction books and do you have plans for more books in the future?
Writing non-fiction is definitely harder that writing fiction in my opinion. Do you know how hard it is to write a book entirely about yourself? It’s not easy. I had to dig deep and bring out emotions that aren’t the same as when I write fiction. Sure, writing fiction can be emotional as well, but Find Your Strong was a true story, not something I made up, so I had to be as authentic as I could possibly be. As of right now, I don’t have any immediate plans to publish any more fiction book. I do have several stories that I have started, but haven’t finished. I’m not going to say they’ll never get published, just not right now. I enjoy being on the design side of the business.
What are your future plans in regards to writing?
I’ve considered doing a follow up to Find Your Strong, but I don’t have any immediate plans for it. Designing keeps me pretty busy, but I would one day love to co-write a book with someone 🙂
I’ll buy dinner for you and any author or book character you would like. Who’ll join us and why?
Hmmm….There are so many I could choose from! I’d have to say my most favorite character is Jamie from Kandy Steiner’s A Love Letter to Whiskey. It’s probably my most favorite book at the moment. I’m a sucker for second chance romances.
You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?
A Love Letter to Whiskey by Kandy Steiner
Sting by Sandra Brown ( Have an autographed copy from meeting her. She’s also a client )
Survivor’s Guilt by me (only because it was my favorite book to write)
Corrupt by Penelope Douglas
and Bared to You by Sylvia Day

Let’s Chat- Violet Howe

Violet Howe enjoys writing romance with humor. She lives in Florida with her husband, who is her knight in shining armor, and their two handsome sons. They share their home with three adorable but spoiled dogs. When she’s not writing, Violet is usually watching movies, reading, or planning her next travel adventure. You can follow Violet’s ramblings on her blog, The Goddess Howe.

 Author Website:  www.violethowe.com

 Facebook VioletHoweAuthor

Twitter @Violet_Howe

Blog:  www.thegoddesshowe.com

I saw on your blog, that you’ve planned weddings but you also had many other jobs. So why did you choose wedding planning as the background for your series? And just how does one emcee a crab race?

 Wedding event planning allows you a unique window into other people’s lives. You are privy to family secrets, family dynamics, relationship issues, budgetary issues, and you get a front row seat to the drama that plays out which can be good and/or bad. Truth is quite often stranger than fiction, and what I saw and heard doing weddings was sometimes inspiring, sometimes revolting, and sometimes downright unbelievable. But all good stories, nonetheless. Throughout the years and the many events I participated in, I always said that one day I was going to write a book about those experiences. When I decided it was to be a fiction novel instead of a memoir, I wove together bits and pieces of many different people and events along with imagined people and events to create the weddings in Tyler’s fictional diary.
I got roped into being a crab race emcee as  favor for a friend with an entertainment company. He wanted someone who was comfortable speaking and performing in front a crowd (check), someone with a great imagination who could spin a story and engage an audience (check), and someone who wasn’t afraid to laugh at themselves and encourage the crowd to laugh with them (check). It didn’t hurt that I was also loud! The key to emceeing a crab race is to get the crowd pumped up and excited even though NOTHING is happening.

The crab races were usually a feature of a Key West-themed party for convention guests, and we had a special crab racing table (complete with checkered flags and a finish line) and a team of crabs adorned with racing numbers. Some crabs didn’t move at all, others moved in the complete opposite direction of the finish line, and some were more interested in the other crabs than in making progress. None of that mattered as long as the crowd was having fun. I encouraged them to choose their racer and cheer loudly, and I would talk in rapid-fire play-by-play reports on the megaphone. “He’s ahead by a claw.” “She’s pinching her way to the finish line.” “He loves the attention…it’s really bringing him out of his shell.” The cornier, the better.

On your blog, you mention you believe stories can “Transport us some place we’ve never been.” When you’re stressed and need a happy place to go in your mind, where do you go and why?

I love to get lost in a good movie or a good story when I’m stressed. I can fully immerse myself into what’s happening with the characters and allow my own life to become background noise as I live in the world on the screen or on the page. At night, when I’m trying to go to sleep and it’s hard to shut down my mind with the recap of the day and the worries of the day to come, I will close my eyes and picture a white sand beach (Pensacola Beach to be exact!). I try to hear the sound of the waves crashing and the distant murmur of people’s laughter and conversation with strains of music and the occasional call of one seagull to another. I try to imagine the feel of the ceiling fan’s air across my limbs is the gentle sea breeze and I imagine my worries and stresses being carried out in the gulf by the waves.

 Tell us about the Goddess Howe blog?

The Goddess Howe Blog started in 2012, when i first left teaching ro pursue writing full-time. It began as a way to express myself with words and pictures and to reach out and find if anyone was listening. It is a basically a collection of personal essays–some funny, some self-deprecating, some inspiring, some thought-provoking. With an occasional movie review or checkout line frustration tale thrown in for trivial measure. Before I began writing novels in earnest, I tried to publish there weekly, and I also used the blog to share my love of photography with a somewhat regular feature called “Saturday Through My Lens.” I set the same goal with the blog that I have set with my novels….to make people think and to make people laugh. Unfortunately, as publishing and marketing have taken the bulk of my time, I have been delinquent in keeping the blog current. But I set a goal this summer to return to The Goddess Howe’s essays once a month moving forward. I did get one published for August already, so hopefully I can stay on track!

Where did you get the idea for The Wedding Planner series?

 As I mentioned above, I had always thought I would like to write about the wedding experiences I had and share the unique view a planner gets into what is considered one of life’s most important events. I was working on an as-of-yet-unpublished novel in 2013, and I signed up to participate in Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month) on October 31st that year. Nanowrimo is a global challenge for writers to get 50,000 words on the page in a 30-day time period (November 1-30). I thought it would be a good shove for me to finish that novel that had been languishing on my laptop. However, after signing up the night of the 31st for the event starting the next day, I read the fine print. (Always a good idea to read it AFTER signing up, right?) The guidelines asked that it be an original work, not one that was already started. Since I was four chapters and most of an outline into the novel I’d planned to write, I went into panic mode wondering how I was going to come up with an idea for a completely different story in a matter of hours. They say “write what you know”, so I fell back on my wedding experiences and began to tell wedding stories in a diary format. As I wrote, I ended each diary entry with a bit of reflection on the wedding and its participants, and with those reflections, a character began to emerge who was telling the story. It became her diary, and the story became more about her coming into her own as an adult and coming to terms with the reality of love and romance vs. the fairy tale idea of it she had clung to her entire life.

You travel to a lot of cons and reader events. What is your favorite part of doing that and how important has that been for your success?

My favorite part of cons and reader events is definitely meeting people. Readers, organizers, and other authors. In my career as a wedding planner and in my time as a teacher, I was part of a team environment. Writing can be a very solitary existence, and I missed the camaraderie and support of having a network of people surrounding me. Meeting other authors at cons and events has built up my network in this industry, and the knowledge they have shared and the support they have given has been crucial to my success. Being able to meet readers and discuss our mutual love of books and characters has been incredible. I have found new books to read, new genres to love, and new ideas to challenge me through the readers I have met. I have also found the indescribable joy that comes from opening your heart and your mind to put your characters and their story out in the world and have readers embrace them and love them. Publishing can be a very vulnerable experience that leaves you feeling exposed, but when someone shares that they’ve found something of value in your words–that it made them laugh, made them think, or allowed them to escape–it is an amazing reminder of how we’re all connected and on similar journeys.

You mention your involvement in community theater. Tell us a little about some of the plays you did? What was your favorite? How has this helped your writing career?

 I have been involved with the Moonlight Players Community Theater in Clermont, Florida since 1996. Unfortunately, I haven’t been on the stage in quite a while since my time and creativity has been devoted to writing, but it is still alive in my heart, and I would love to be back under the lights someday soon. My favorite roles are not only due to the character I played but also tied together with the cast I belonged to. Each cast is like a family with its own dynamics and personality and style. I’ve made lifelong friends through the theater, and you bond very quickly when you’re sharing emotions in such a public way. If I had to pick favorites, I would say my roles in Bram Stoker’s Dracula, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, and Rumors would be near the top, but my all-time favorite role was Annelle in Steel Magnolias. (the Daryl Hannah character if you saw the movie!) Annelle went through a grand transformation in pretty much every scene of the play, and it was fun to play so many different aspects of one character. I think theater has helped my writing in that I see the entire scene as I am writing it. I think of the “props” and the “set” and try to describe them for the reader much like the stage directions describe them for the actor. I believe doing so helps immerse the reader in the story more fully, and allows them to hear what the character is hearing, see what the character is seeing, and feel what the character is doing. I also find that I write in scenes rather than by an outline or linear timeline.

 Tell us about your writing process and what keeps you motivated.

 I try to stick to a schedule of writing on Monday-WednesdayFriday and doing marketing, social media planning, and business on TuesdayThursday. Doing so allows me to set aside the “boring” or “taxing” parts of the business on my creative days, and it allows me to not feel guilt for not writing on business days. However, as I get close to the climax and ending of a book, that plan goes out the window and I write every single day, every single night, until all hours of the night! (And fall behind on EVERYTHING else!) I stay motivated by the stories that are constantly going on in my head, the character dialogue that is non-stop chatter underscoring everything else I’m doing or thinking about, and by reading books and watching movies that inspire me to write!

What are your future plans in regards to writing?

 I am working on the second book in the Cedar Creek series, and I have at least three planned for the main characters, Sloane and Tristan, as well as a spin-off for Tristan’s brother, Holden. I have two stories set on different horse ranches I’d like to get out next year, one of which I am planning to publish as part of a “Meet Cute” promotion with other authors. At some point, I want to get back to that unfinished novel that is still waiting since before my Nanowrimo project began, and I also have a couple of other ideas in the pipeline that I’d like to see developed into full novels.

I’ll buy dinner for you and any author or book character you would like. Who’ll join us and why?

Diana Gabaldon and Jamie Fraser! One of my dearest friends nagged me for over a year to read Diana’s Outlander, and when I finally got around to it, I flew through the entire series and became obsessed!! I am in awe of her writing style and the way she brings her characters to life for me and immerses me in their world and their lives to the point that I feel they are family members and I miss them when I’m not reading! I’m always impressed with her mind and her wit in interviews and on her Facebook page, and I would love to sit down and chat with her. And Jamie because, well, Jamie! He’s the King of Men. haha Her hero is tough, intelligent, powerful leader who is also tender, passionate, and so funny that I often laugh at loud at his dialogue. I have quite the book boyfriend crush on Jamie Fraser…me and several hundred thousand others!

You can only have five books on your bookshelf. What are they?

Oh wow. Very difficult to narrow that down.

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer (my guilty pleasure and the book that got me back into reading after years spent distracted by other things)

Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott

The Borrowers by Mary Norton

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

______________

Thank you, Violet!