Friday, December 28, 2012

CC Mackenzie in the house! PART 2


Hello world!

Today I'm back with my guest, the fantabulous CC Mackenzie! If you haven't read PART 1 of this interview, you may do so by clicking here.


LAST CHANCE TODAY - PRIZE ALERT!!!  CC IS GIVING AWAY AWESOME PRIZES TO 10 LUCKY WINNERS! IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, DON'T FORGET TO PARTICIPATE IN THE RAFFLECOPTER DRAWING INCLUDED IN PART 1 OF THIS INTERVIEW. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO TAKE PART.

Now, CC has more to say so I'll let her take over :) ...


Do you read industry or writing related blogs? If so, can you share some useful links?

I read Joe Konrath - http://jakonrath.blogspot.co.uk/ - who divides opinion but he keeps his ear pretty close to the ground, encourages debate and is a very helpful guy to read if you’re new to self-publishing.

I read CJ Lyons, http://www.norulesjustwrite.com/blog/ – every writer should follow her blog imho. https://mail.google.com/mail/ca/u/0/?shva=1#inbox/13b840da876e16fa



Kristine Kathryn Rusch, http://kriswrites.com/

Writer Beware is a first stop shop for anyone even thinking about publishing, either traditionally or indie.  Run by Victoria Strauss it is up-to-date information on what’s happening now. http://accrispin.blogspot.co.uk/

There are plenty more, but these are a good place to start.

What do you think of the changes going on in the book industry (e.g., e-books vs. print books, and big publishers getting involved in digital publishing)? Where do you see the industry going?

Well, I’ll be honest; both sides of the debate need to work harder at working together. There’s too much throwing of stones and tossing of toys out of the pram from both sides and it is not helpful, so I don’t run in that playground. I go where the positive voices are like WANA (We Are Not Alone) run by Kristen Lamb http://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/ and the WG2E Team http://thewritersguidetoepublishing.com/  run by Dee Dee Scott – they have facebook and twitter groups too who are incredibly supportive to a new writer and many are now published, including moi, and we’re there to help.

There is no ‘right’ way or ‘wrong’ way. There is the way that is right for YOU. And if that means self-publishing and being in control of the entire process and that’s right for you then fine. If it means submitting, reworking a manuscript until your eyes and ears bleed and that is right for you then that’s fine too. If it means finding indie success and a publisher calls and you accept an offer to go down that route that is fine too. Or if you say ‘no thank you’ to an agent or a deal that’s fine too.  Can you see a picture emerging?  The wonderful thing is that now authors have freedom of choice. At last authors are speaking to readers without the middleman. Authors are excited and so are readers and that can only be a good thing imho.

Boutique publishers are already springing up to service the writer and the reader – sort of like a halfway house. Not quite self publishing they take over the formatting, covers, blog, twitter, and facebook heavy lifting - leaving the author to write. At least that’s the theory so it should be interesting to see how it develops.

However, we writers are now running our own publishing businesses, servicing readers world-wide directly one on one and even selling directly to them too without using Amazon  & Co. I can see a sort of author co-operative future where writers collaborate, perhaps in their hundreds, to run book promotions for their fans. Readers love talking to authors who don’t only promote their own work but promote the work of others without backstabbing and negativity. I know this because that is what readers tell me. It’s an interesting and exciting time to be a writer.

And the world is shrinking. iTunes are in over fifty countries and counting. Kobo are spread even further but need to get their act together regarding their search engine. And the big kahoona, Amazon, is determined to be the winner in global Ebook domination. They run a business and are in it to make money, which I think makes them predictable so I don’t worry about how ‘big’ they’re going to be or not. I just want to find my readers. I believe in spreading my work everywhere and on all platforms. I believe that eventually everything will be held in the cloud rather than on drives or devices too.

What advice do you think aspiring authors should heed today?

Write what you want to read and cannot find. Learn your craft. It takes time to learn the craft, which is a never-ending work in progress and that is as it should be because readers demand and need change. And the READER must be front and centre of everything you do. The READER is God. AND once a book is out there it no longer belongs to the author, it belongs to the reader. If we can get our head around that reality, move on and keep writing, then we’ll do well.

What are you working on now?

Book three of The Vampyre Legal Chronicles, Gia’s song, which is based in New York. Outlining the next three novellas in the series. Final editing SOLD hopefully coming out in January and working on my futuristic UNTOUCHABLE series out in Fall 2013, which sounds far away but it’s not. And then my fourth Ludlow Hall book, which is due out early summer 2013.

What hero/heroine/villain/other character was the most fun or challenging to write for you?

It’s funny you should ask that. I thought Rosie; the secondary character from Reckless Nights In Rome would be easy since I knew her so well. But noooooo. It’s been a challenge writing the love story of Alexander and Rosie because why haven’t they got it together before now? So I had to dig really deep into both their motivation and emotional conflicts. And then add in a life changing even for Rosie and her need to move on and get a life. Hitting the right note was hard because they know each other too well (they think). So it’s been like writing an emotional iceberg - what’s on the surface is nothing compared to what’s hidden underneath. And Rosie’s naturally funny and mouthy and brave. Except where it comes to her own heart, her own needs and her own fears. There’s nothing like dreaming of something for years and years and then getting it. In some ways the reality might not reach a person’s expectation but exceeds them in others.  A bit like real life! And again, Alexander’s an alpha, hehehe. I love bringing a man to his knees.

But the best fun has been my paranormal series and the futuristic one coming next year. I’ve had a fabulous time with those.

How do you juggle work, writing, chores and family/personal life? Do you have a secret to time management that you want to share with readers?

I don’t is the honest answer. I juggle many balls in the air and just make sure it’s the ones that bounce I drop. I wish I had two of me. My expectations for myself tend to be unrealistic and I take on too much. I have three children now in their late teens and late twenties and they’ve been incredible. But sometimes they need their mother to be their mother. My husband is amazing. He’s taken over all the grocery shopping and cooking.  He’s not into romance, ahem. But he’ll listen to me talking about characters and motivations etc. He does all the techie work for me along with formatting, links and dealing with the distributors.

Do you have a ritual that you follow when it comes to writing?

I try not to touch the Internet until I’ve my daily word count under my belt. Except for today! Thank you for that, Natalie! My keyboard is an extension of my brain and since I touch type I use a DAS keyboard for MAC.

How would you describe your writing voice?

A fun, fast, emotional read.

What message do you want to send readers with your writing? How do you want readers to remember you?

I want a reader to have fun, be pulled into a story that is pure escapism from the real world for a short time, but leave them with a sense of completion at THE END. I hope they remember me as someone who didn’t shortchange them.

The best part of writing and getting your books published?

Speaking to readers who love the story and meeting soul mates.

The worst part?

Not having enough hours in the day and dealing with the downside of the Internet, the trolls and spam.

Where do you see yourself, career-wise, in 5 years’ time?

With my Paranormal Vampyre series rocking along with the Contemporary romances and bringing readers across genres.

Name something you like to do when you’re not writing – a hobby, maybe…

I dance, a lot.  Spend time with my family, read and listen to music.

What is your philosophy of life? Who is CC Mackenzie?

Never live with regret. Life is not a dress rehearsal; we can’t go back and do it again if we get it wrong so lose the fear and follow your heart.

Movies – drama or humor? Do you have a favorite?

Humor. Leap Year! Loved that film even though the hero needed a big boot up the ass!

Favorite music and artist?

I love a cross section from Classical to Adele. I listen to anyone and anything that is talented.

What’s your color and why?

Blues, across the spectrum. They’re calm and cool, everything I’m not!

Ice-cream or cake? Flavor/type?

Ice-cream, triple chocolate with fudge or toffee.

Ideal vacation spot?

The Indian Ocean.

Favorite season?

Spring.

Favorite holiday?

Hemingways at Malindi on the Kenyan coast. Love it.



LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
CLICK ON BOOK COVERS FOR AMAZON PURCHASE LINKS AND MORE INFO ON THESE FUN AND MUST-HAVE BOOKS FOR THE ROMANTIC AND ADVENTUROUS IN YOU:

 
ALL OF THESE AMAZING TITLES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE ON KOBOSMASHWORDS AND iTUNES - (EXCEPT "RUN ROSIE RUN", WHICH IS CURRENTLY NOT YET ON iTUNES).

About CC Mackenzie:

C C MacKenzie is a wife, and mother of three, based in South Cheshire, U.K.

Since childhood, she dreamt of writing stories that readers would fall in love with, but put those dreams on hold to focus on her family and her careers in banking, fitness, interior design and construction. Reckless Nights in Rome is her first novel, followed by 'A Stormy Spring' in August 2012 and Run Rosie Run in December 2012 .
C C MacKenzie is currently finishing three more Contemporary Romances due for release in 2013. She is also working on a vampire paranormal saga.


The first one of The Vampyre Legal Chronicles, Big Trouble In China, is out now!

Find her here:

Facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/CCMzie
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ @ccmackenzie1
Email: ccmackenzie56@gmail.com


LAST CHANCE TODAY - PRIZE ALERT!!! CC IS GIVING AWAY AWESOME PRIZES TO 10 LUCKY WINNERS! IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY, DON'T FORGET TO PARTICIPATE IN THE RAFFLECOPTER DRAWING INCLUDED IN PART 1 OF THIS INTERVIEW. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO TAKE PART.

~ Natalie G. Owens ~ 
No Rules. No Formulas. Just a world of love, mystery and fantasy!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

CC Mackenzie in the house! PART 1

Hello world!

First off, I hope you're having a lovely holiday season filled with fun and happy things! If you celebrate it, did Santa bring you all the things you desire this year? I hope so! As 2012 ends and the world is still there (Mayans, pffff!), it's a good time to reflect one all the things we want to do next year and how we could do better. Here's me making a virtual toast to an amazing 2013, then!

Okay, so... 

For the next two days, I'm hosting a really cool, amazing person and fantastic writer, CC Mackenzie! CC is a unique person who loves to make people feel good and happy. Despite any personal problems she may have (and they may be huge), she always finds time for others. So today, I'm giving a little bit back by showcasing her and her (really good) work on my blog. You will love her Ludlow Hall series. You start with that and keep reading until the end - then move on to her Vampyre series. CC writes unforgettable characters that stay with you long after you finish the book. 

So far I've read "Reckless Nights in Rome" and started chomping into "A Stormy Spring" (which starts with a shock and a bang - in a good way!). As far as Reckless Nights in Rome is concerned, being the one I finished so far, I can say it's one of those fast-paced stories you can't put down. These days it's tough for me to read fast as I have so many things to do throughout the day such as write, do chores and care for/chase after a toddler, lol, but CC's book kept me hooked to the end to the point that I lost sleep to read. CC has a very easy writing style. What strikes me is that she's not presumptuous in her writing as she isn't in life - but one can fairly touch the maturity and fine points of her characterization. CC's characters rock! What's not to love about a male alpha with a tortured past who hides a kind and giving heart, and a damaged but strong heroine you can really root for? CC can write emotion and sensuality with what I call "down-to-earth finesse" and style. And boy her love scenes are hot!! But so well written and tasteful. I love her work so much that I had to invite her here to be my guest :).

Now, I leave the floor to CC who has so much to say about her journey as a writer! Below is Part 1 of the interview. Tomorrow, I'll post Part 2. 

And don't miss out on participating in the rafflecopter drawing below to win a Ludlow Series box set and Book 1 of the Vampyre Legal Chronicles. CC is so generous that she's giving away not one but 10 of these awesome prizes!




How long have you been writing?

Oooh I think since I was seven and received a gold star for a short story. Probably the most thrilling moment of my young life. Although after The Sound of Music I wanted to be a nun and we can see how well that plan turned out.

When did you decide that you wanted to write for a living (that "aha" moment)?

Six years ago. I was working too hard chasing my tail in the corporate world and travelling hundreds of miles a week. Paul McKenna was being interviewed on television and he asked the question, ‘What are the five things you want to do before you die?’ And my number one answer was, ‘To be a romance writer.’ I realized if I wanted to live that dream then I needed to get my finger out and get on with it.

What did your family say when you told them you wanted to be a writer?

My husband, Hugo, was not surprised. My mother nodded and said she couldn’t understand why I hadn’t ‘had a go’ before. My children just nodded and said, ‘Great.’ Without having any idea how it was going to impact their lives, bless them.

What is your preferred genre both for reading and writing?

I have two. I love paranormal, especially vampires, and always have done. My other love is romance in all its genres.

What is your favorite book(s)? Which book(s) inspired you to write romance?

It has to be the classics. Anything by Charlotte Bronte, and although we probably can’t count Georgette Heyer as a classic I’ve adored every single one of her works since I was a teenager. I always mention The Grand Sophy as one of the books that’s inspired me to write. Moby Dick by Herman Melville is another dog-eared read I keep handy. Books that affected me in different ways are Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. The Stranger by Albert Canus and The Night Bird Cantata by Donald Rawley. I couldn’t begin to attempt to write a work of great literary fiction but I do enjoy dipping into one of the greats even if they’re not always an ‘easy’ read, if you know what I mean? A lot depends on my mood too. For modern writers of paranormal I adore Nalini Singh, JR Ward and Christine Feehan.

Plot or characters? What quality does a story need to have to make you love it?

Characters. When we have a great character to explore it’s amazing how a book powers along.  A story needs to be fast paced with fantastically written characters that make me laugh and cry. And a good love scene is always a bonus too.

How did you come up with the Ludlow Hall series?

One of my daughters has twice climbed out of a ground floor toilet to escape the blind date from hell. This was a number of years ago. She confessed the whole sorry debacle to a friend, her sister and I in a coffee shop and I thought we were going to be thrown out by the way we were howling with laughter and Bronte Ludlow was born. The series has sort of grown organically and may spawn another series. I’m mulling over which direction to take the stories at the moment. But I also love writing stand-alone stories and I’ve one which is an adventure/thriller/romance coming out early next year. Although it looks as if that one might spawn another. I’m working on them now.

I see you love a good alpha in your books. :) In real life, what’s your ideal man like?

Haha! Yes! I like a man who’s a man with plenty of testosterone but who puts his woman at the front and centre of every single thing he does. He needs to have strict values and ethics. A relationship works if his partner feels the same way about him and they build a strong team. I married my ideal man. He proposed two weeks after our first date and six months later we married. That was many years ago. As every year passes that I’m married to Hugo I count myself lucky to have found him. Although I suspect being married to me has been a challenge :)

Then you went from contemporary romance to the Vampyre Legal Chronicles series. What’s the story behind this series? Also, what do you love about vampires and what are your vampires like?

Three years ago I finaled in The Romance Junkies competition with a futuristic paranormal about an end of the world scenario where Vampires, Witches and other beings re-enter our world via alternative realities and gateways. The hero is a Precedential Vampyre Elder who owns a global pharmaceutical company manufacturing synthetic hemoglobin for his species and the heroine is a Witch from an ancient coven who is a Commander in The World Health Protectorate. The idea behind the series is for Vampyre Elders to meet their mates. But I also wanted to explore the ongoing relationship of my hero and heroine throughout the stories while they deal with conspiracy, treachery and loss. And try to discover who is pulling the strings behind global events. It’s been a vast undertaking and something I dip in and out of. The Vampyre Legal Chronicles came to me when I was talking to my editor about the ‘big picture’ of the futuristic paranormal series. She suggested I try writing a more erotic shorter stories incorporating how the world ends before I rebuild it in the future. And so the VLC was born. Unfortunately, I’m behind with the series but book two is due out before Christmas with book three well under way. And again this is turning into a vast undertaking with the back-story impacting the search for true love and happiness for my Vampyre lawyers.

The great thing about writing a paranormal hero is that I don’t have to be ‘politically correct.’ The gloves are off and that’s incredibly freeing for a writer. I suppose I love the genre because of the ‘eternal life’ aspect of the deal.

How long did it take you to make your first sale? What was your first thought when you did?

My first sale came in the first hour after Reckless Nights In Rome went live on Amazon. After giving birth it was the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done. We told no one so the person who bought it was unknown to me. I did a happy dance. But that’s nothing compared to receiving a message from a fan.

How many drafts did you write of your first novel before you felt you got it right? What about now - do you still write several drafts of a story?

Reckless Nights In Rome started out as a story about cancer. Mills & Boon rejected it because of the theme and sent me a wonderful rejection full of advice and to re-submit. However, things in publishing changed FAST. I took advice and decided to self publish. But I did incorporate the changes and followed editorial advice. It went through thirteen edits. In many ways I might have over edited my voice from it, but the lesson was a valuable one. If I could say one thing it is that a first draft is always crap. Always. I then do a major character development draft and dig down deep into character motivation to make sure it’s on the page. Then I do three structural edits – one for dialogue - one for scenes - and one for sequels (narrative). These take time and as a writer my head needs to be in the ‘right’ place with the right attitude. We all question our ability at times and that’s normal. It’s recognizing what your mood is that’s key I think. Don’t edit if you’re tired or had a fight with your loved ones or are feeling like crap for one reason or another because you’ll bring that negativity to the work. I’ll leave it for maybe a week or two.  Then I do a big picture edit and ask ‘What’s missing?’ Is it rocking along? Repetition? Has it stalled? Does it make sense (crucial)? Do the love scenes hit the spot? I make copious notes at this point after a couple of read throughs. Once I’ve gone through those I spell check etc and do a line edit checking for ‘only’ and ‘just’ and ‘likes’.  It’s at this point errors can be introduced so I crawl over the work hunting for anomalies. Then it’s sent to my editor who is a holy terror and we discuss what I’m trying to do. My work has become ‘cleaner’ as I’ve gone along and things she used to pull me up for in the beginning don’t happen. I don’t stick rigidly to ‘rules’ and I do fragment sentences etc., especially during a character’s deep inner point of view. Then I work through the edit and corrections. After that the story is downloaded to my Kindle where I read the whole thing in bed armed with a pad and pen. With Rosie at this point I ended up with forty A4 pages of notations. These were not a ‘big deal’ but allow me see what it looks like and ‘feels’ like for the visual reading experience. It’s amazing what the human eye can be tricked by, two ‘hers’ or ‘the’ that we simply do not see. In Rosie’s case I re-wrote two whole chapters and introduced two scenes which is why she was delayed. As you can see I tend to be a bit anal, lol! Run Rosie Run is out NOW!

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
CLICK ON BOOK COVERS FOR AMAZON PURCHASE LINKS AND MORE INFO ON THESE FUN AND MUST-HAVE BOOKS FOR THE ROMANTIC AND ADVENTUROUS IN YOU:



ALL OF THESE AWESOME TITLES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE ON KOBO, SMASHWORDS AND iTUNES - (EXCEPT "RUN ROSIE RUN", WHICH IS CURRENTLY NOT YET ON iTUNES).

NOW YOU CAN ENTER TO WIN ONE OF AT LEAST 10 PRIZES, INCLUDING A LUDLOW HALL SERIES eBOOK BOX SET AND BOOK 1 OF THE VAMPYRE LEGAL CHRONICLES:

About CC Mackenzie:

C C MacKenzie is a wife, and mother of three, based in South Cheshire, U.K.

Since childhood, she dreamt of writing stories that readers would fall in love with, but put those dreams on hold to focus on her family and her careers in banking, fitness, interior design and construction. Reckless Nights in Rome is her first novel, followed by 'A Stormy Spring' in August 2012 and Run Rosie Run in December 2012 .
C C MacKenzie is currently finishing three more Contemporary Romances due for release in 2013. She is also working on a vampire paranormal saga.


The first one of The Vampyre Legal Chronicles, Big Trouble In China, is out now!

Find her here:

Facebook author page: http://www.facebook.com/CCMzie
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ @ccmackenzie1

End of Interview Part 1.


~ Natalie G. Owens ~
No Rules. No Formulas. Just a world of love, mystery and fantasy!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

WRITING RETREATS, ATLANTIC CANADIAN STYLE


Hello world! 

I've always been fascinated by the subject of writer retreats. It is one of my dreams to participate in one as I've never done it. It's the idea of leaving your routine life for a minute and simply drowning in your craft, while enjoying the precious camaraderie of like-minded people - and a glass or two of wine :) - that is the main attraction. When Julia Phillips Smith, my guest of today, told me that she goes to a weekend-long one every year, I just had to ask her to write about it. After reading her post I thought, what an experience! Let me allow Julia to tell you all about about life at a retreat now, and see if you agree :)...

----------
WRITING RETREATS, ATLANTIC CANADIAN STYLE

Heading for dinner at the lodge with Annette and Kelly Boyce
As I wade with gusto into the holiday season, one of the things to which I look forward most of all in the coming year is the annual retreat hosted by my writers’ group.

For the past decade, I’ve belonged to Romance Writers of Atlantic Canada, the local chapter of Romance Writers of America. Each autumn about a dozen of us hightails it to Nova Scotia’s south shore for a weekend of high impact writing, laughter, movie watching, wine drinking and maybe a bit of chillaxin’.

My friend Kelly Boyce and I have been to every retreat since we joined, and she feels the same way I do: the moment we pack up the car and head back for the city, we’re already counting the days until the next one.

My friend Kelly Boyce and me, hardcore retreaters
Why? you may ask.

What is it about a retreat that a weekend at home couldn’t replicate? Couldn’t I just book off all of my normal weekend things and focus on my writing?

…well, you could. It’s not impossible to create your own retreat if you don’t live near any of your writer peeps. Here’s what I find so renewing and irreplaceable about going on a writers’ retreat:

RETREATING

The act of separating yourself from your everyday schedule and environment is the key element. The symbolic power of hitting the road for the retreat is filled with intention and purpose. When we go to our retreat, we mean business. This isn’t a stretch-out-and-have-a-massage kind of retreat. We actually get an amazing amount of focused writing done.

Timed writing sessions (rough pages of SAINT SANGUINUS)
PEER IDENTITY

No one at the writers’ retreat is wearing any other hat but their writer hats. Mom/wife/daughter/other family member/day job employee/committee member/other organization support team member—all of those other roles are parked in the city or at home.

At the retreat, we can all speak writer shorthand. We all understand what we mean. So we can go deeper. We can have real craft-of-writing conversations. Somehow, the time we spend at our regular monthly meetings never seems to last long enough for the types of conversations that flourish at the retreat.

My book trailer producer Tara MacDonald
STIMULATION

Over the years, we’ve had craft-of-writing sessions touching upon things like the use of dialogue, world building and the hero’s journey. We’ve had great success with games like Whose Muse is Whose? which showcases pictures of the inspirations for our works-in-progress heroes, with retreat-goers trying to match up the hero to the writer.

A full house (or cottage, as the case may be)
To be honest, all of that stimulation makes me a bit wired by the end of the weekend. It’s pretty much the opposite of rest and relaxation.


BRAINSTORMING

This is the jewel in the crown of the retreat. Everyone brings loose ideas for this part of the weekend. The larger group gets split into groups of three or four, which then times out a 40-minute pitch and brainstorming session for each member of the mini grouping.

You’d be amazed at the paranormal suggestions that can come from a contemporary author. Mixing up genres can give really fresh ideas. I’ve also brainstormed with two other fantasy/paranormal writers and our sessions turned out diamond ideas.


 Kelly getting some sun and writing time
PLAY

We do a great deal of writing work at the retreat, but we have an equal share of play as well. Some of us go for walks by the sea or in the woods. Some of us curl up with a book. Many bottles of wine are opened. Lots of yummy food is inhaled. I think it’s an essential part of the retreat to reconnect with the joy of writing.

~~

Whose Muse is Whose? game
If you don’t have access to a writers’ group, or if you have far-flung writer friends and wish you could meet up for a retreat, in this new age of Skyping, why not organize a virtual retreat?

The success of our writers’ retreats is in no small part to the planning of the executive. If 2013 seems like the time to finally organize something for yourself, I strongly encourage you to seize the day.

Your future readers will thank you for it.       





Thank you Julia for being a guest on my blog! It's been a pleasure. Find out more about Julia and her work at www.juliaphillipssmith.com.

Other social media links:


Julia's latest release:

BOUND BY DRAGONSFYRE
The truth burns
No one is safe when the dragon glides low over the Eighth Dominion. Not the high born who plot and spill blood. Not the low born who serve with one eye to the sky and the other glancing back.
Young Scorpius is fetched from the estate nursery, once raised to live among the nobility – claimed finally not by his family, but by a falconer to serve as his apprentice.
Scorpius soon learns that a noble hides his monstrous appetites beneath velvet and jewels, while the leathery-winged dragon is honest about his own. His master does his best to shield Scorpius from the world outside their cottage, but the falconer is merely a servant who must obey his own masters.
An attempt on the life of a young lord while on a hunt sends the falconer’s apprentice on an abruptly different path, bringing Scorpius into the service of the House of Pruzhnino. Court intrigue sinks its talons into everyone, even Scorpius–especially a former falconer’s apprentice once raised to be a lord in his own right.
AVAILABLE NOW at Amazon and Smashwords


    

~ Natalie G. Owens ~
No Rules. No Formulas. Just a world of love, mystery and fantasy!

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Holiday Gifts of Love Blog Hop is here!

Hello world!

It's that time again - the time for an amazing blog hop with amazing authors giving away amazing prizes! The Holiday Gifts of Love Blog Hop


It's a Happy Holiday from your favorite Authors and Bloggers. While we know everyone celebrates a different way, we wanted to make sure that you guys knew how much we treasure you all. So from Dec 14th to Dec 17th, all 200 or so of us will be blogging about the holidays and what they mean to us. We may talk about our favorite holiday traditions, recipes, gifts, reads, heroes, and so much more. We want to hear about what you do for the holidays, what you read, and who you'll spend it with. We hope to see you here and happy hopping!

And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be over 200 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.

But that's not all....

We have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 200 times!


Now what are those prizes?
Check this out...





And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be close to 200 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.


My giveaway?
(1) A $5 Amazon gift card; 
(2) A free download of An Eternity of Roses (The Valthreans: Book 1) as soon as it's released shortly in December 2012 - in the format of your choice.

How do you enter the drawing to win these prizes?
By following the simple instructions in the Rafflecopter below... (NOTE: I don't send e-mail often to readers - not more than once a month. I message readers ONLY when I have a new release or for important announcements.) 


After completing the above, please also comment below with your e-mail address to be entered into the main drawing for the three MEGA prizes.

Yep. ALL of that! Whoot! (NOTE: The first two prizes are international; the swag pack is not and can only be mailed to US winners)

So be sure to visit here on December 14th through the 17th (my birthday, yay!) to let me know what you love about the holidays! Me? I love everything about Christmas, but most of all it's the closeness with family, the chance to spend time with my loved ones. What about you?

And after you comment, please check out the other participating authors' sites (follow the handy linky list at the end of this post) to see what they have on offer during this Blog Hop. You can't go wrong with this fantastic selection... you'll be spoilt for choice! 

Hope you enjoyed your stay here. Thanks for stopping by and best of luck to ya!!

*********
About AN ETERNITY OF ROSES (THE VALTHREANS, BOOK 1):

"...‘Til the end of my life, I shall belong to you as your husband.”
That was the promise Adrian made to Emmaline.

And then, he was gone forever...

Two lovers separated by an evil curse...

It is 1807. Adrian Segrave, Viscount Bournemouthe, and Lady Emmaline Deramore are about to wed and British Society teems with excitement at this imminent love match. But Madeline de Brandeville, a mysterious Frenchwoman, has her lustful and ambitious sights on the groom. When she sets her cruel plan in motion, she leaves devastation in her path.

A quest through time...

Heartbroken, Emmaline embarks on an adventure she'd never imagined having. As the world changes and chaos brews, her fate becomes linked with the Valthreans, a group of immortals who must learn to face a deadly enemy that threatens their place in the human world. But all the while, there is one thing she wants more than any other -- to get back her man.

When she finally finds her prize, he does not have a single memory of her, and her worst nightmares are far from over.

Is this love meant to be, after all?

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Disclaimer: Do not read this novel if you dislike drop dead sexy heroes, strong heroines, intriguing immortals, magic, spells, mystery, amazing adventures, exotic settings, secret cults, and sensual love scenes.

Click here for an excerpt.





~ Natalie G. Owens ~
No Rules. No Formulas. Just a world of love, mystery and fantasy!

Friday, December 07, 2012

Christmas Wishes Giveaway Hop

Hello world!

I'm very happy to participate this week in the Christmas Wishes Giveaway Hop organized by Book & Trailer Showcase (BTS Virtual Book Tours)Coffee Beans & Love scenes (CBLS Promotions), and Full Moon Bites (FMB Blog Tours)


The hop is taking place during one of my favorite seasons in the year - between December 7th and 13th :). A whole week of fun and prizes!

And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be close to 200 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.


My giveaway?
(1) A $5 Amazon gift card; 
(2) A free download of An Eternity of Roses (The Valthreans: Book 1) as soon as it's released in December 2012 - in the format of your choice.

How do you enter the drawing to win these prizes?
By following the simple instructions in the Rafflecopter below... (NOTE: I don't send e-mail often to readers - not more than once a month. I message readers ONLY when I have a new release or for important announcements.) 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

After you complete the above, please also enter the main rafflecopter giveaway below to be entered into the main drawing for the MEGA prizes. Or you can click this link and enter directly from the BTS page.

But that's not all....

We have the following grand prizes. Besides, you as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win the individual giveaways. What this means is that you can enter about 170 individual drawings, as well as 170 times for the grand prize giveaways!


Now what are those MEGA prizes?

A Kindle Touch 3G 
Nook Glow
(Both e-readers will come with a book bundle!)
A $90 Amazon or B&N Gift Card

Yep. ALL of that! Whoot! 

Be sure to visit here on December 7th through the 13th to participate. Also, I'd love to know what you wish to get for Christmas this year! What did you ask Santa to bring you?

Me? I asked for a whole fruit juicer and I already got one :) 

And after you comment, please check out the other participating authors' sites (follow the handy linky list below) to see what they have on offer during this Blog Hop. You can't go wrong with this fantastic selection... you'll be spoilt for choice! My super awesome writing partner Zee Monodee is also taking part, so make sure to visit her page, too :).

Hope you take some time to read below about my other books and that you enjoyed your stay here. Thanks for stopping by and best of luck to ya!!

*********
About the Moonlight Dating Series:

Something to Live for
Available from: 
Kobo 
(eBook)

***HAUTE PINK MAGAZINE'S 2012 SUMMER READING LIST PICK!*** 

"This book does not fade to black!" 
--- Wren Deloro 

"Delicately cast into a frame with frissons of the supernatural, this short story will have appeal to many types of readers, as it did to me. Ms. Owens has an intriguing touch with the aspects of characterization, plotting, and setting imagery; I'm quite eager to read more from her." 


Fifteen years ago, one fateful day bound the lives of two perfect strangers…

Melita Saari-Quinn is living the consequences of a traumatizing psychic event that turned her adolescence upside down. Now, disillusioned with her job as a psychotherapist and desiring a change from her lackluster existence, she hopes that something out of her  ordinary sphere of existence - something totally uninhibited and spontaneous - will renew her zest for life.

Alex Moncado seems to have it all – good looks, a successful business, and a fun life in “party central” of the Mediterranean: the island of Malta. Except for one day in the year when he can’t help but remember a tragedy that never should have been. One day he’d rather forget, because if he doesn’t, the guilt will consume him.


Can one passionate night together banish the ghosts of the past and give two lost souls a second chance? 


Only Fate can tell…


*********

Everything to Lose
(On Sale during the blog hop @ 99c!)
Available from:
(eBook)

From the suburbs of London to the old charm of Ascoli Piceno, Italy, follow the journey a broken couple must take to discover the long-buried secrets that shattered their marriage. 

Lisbeth Marsh put everything on hold to be with her ideal man, even the wish to have a family. But when the dream of everlasting love vanished into thin air, she was faced with the mistakes and prejudices of her choices. 

Dane Marsh is a proud man who spent years worshiping the gods of ambition. Toward this single-minded purpose, he sacrificed his happiness and peace of mind. Now that he knows what he's lost, will he have the courage to turn his life around? 


With a little meddling from Moonlight Dating's Jeanette Lagrange and a dash of magic, the two embark on the trip of a lifetime to bury the ghosts of the past. 


"Sensual, Emotionally Impacting, Deep-a Winner!"
"Natalie G. Owens always writes in awesome locations."

***In part previously published as "Mr. & Mrs. Foster". Extensively revised, lengthened and edited***



~ Natalie G. Owens ~
No Rules. No Formulas. Just a world of love, mystery and fantasy!