Saturday, December 21, 2013

NEW RELEASE from Lauren Algeo!

Just in time for the holidays, check out this amazing new release by Lauren Algeo!!

It’s time…
This Saturday, author Lauren Algeo releases the second novel in her Hikers Trilogy, Hikers Part Two: Passion.
In this second part, Scott Brewer travels to America following the tragedy at the Grand’s house, and teams up with Mitch Baines, aka Striker25. Starting in Philadelphia, they begin to hunt the surviving hikers and along the way they meet Ellen MacIntosh, a woman with a deep desire for revenge on one particular hiker. Together they journey across the states, encountering death, pain, love, and the most terrifying possibility of them all – is the Grand somehow back from the dead?
To find out more, or catch up on the first part of the Hikers Trilogy, visit:

Or alternatively, visit her Facebook and Twitter pages for the latest news and book links.

Lauren Algeo is a twenty-eight year old graphic designer from London, who currently writes part time. The first part of the Hikers Trilogy, Hikers Part One: Power, was published in January 2013, followed by her second novel, The Perfect Date, in June 2013. She mainly writes in the horror and thriller genres and also has several short horror stories published online.
And as a special treat, Lauren agreed to an interview!
Violet:  Do you listen to music when you write? Have a completely silent space?
Lauren:  I prefer it to be quiet when writing, but as I mainly write on the train during my commute to work that isn’t always possible! I’ve learnt to fade out some of the background noise now.

Violet:  When did you first start writing? What genre do you prefer?
Lauren: I used to write a lot of stories as a child, mainly ghost stories, then a few years ago I began writing again. I started with some short horror stories then moved on to novels, and have now just published my third book.

Violet: What is your favorite book (or who is your favorite author) and why?
Lauren: My favourite childhood book was White Fang by Jack London, and I still have my original sellotaped copy! As I got older I discovered Stephen King, who is now my favourite author. I love the Dark Tower series and IT.

Violet: Do you have another job and if so what is it?
Lauren:  I work full time as a graphic designer at a design agency in London. It would be great to write full time one day though.

Violet:  List all of your titles with a one sentence synopsis of each.
Lauren: Hikers Part One: Power:
A former Detective Inspector, Scott Brewer, hunts a family of assassins, called hikers, who have the power of mind control.

The Perfect Date:
Thirty year old journalist Kate Anderson gets more than she bargains for when she joins a dating website.

Hikers Part Two: Passion:
After the tragedy at the end of Part One, Scott Brewer travels to America to team up with Mitch Baines and hunt the surviving hikers.

Violet: Who is your favorite character? Why?
Lauren: Georgie Duncan from the Hikers Trilogy is my favourite character to write. She’s strong willed and smart, but vulnerable underneath.

Violet: Who is your least favorite character? Why?
Lauren: Nick from Hikers Part One is my least favourite character. He’s an awful, abusive character and writing some of the scenes involving him was very tough.

Violet:  Indie pub or trad pub?
Lauren: Currently I’m an Indie published author as I like the freedom and control it gives me. Maybe one day I’ll move to traditional publishing but for now I’m enjoying the Indie world. It’s a great community with a lot of supportive authors, editors and readers.

Violet:  If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Lauren: I’d love to meet Stephen King. After reading his books for so many years it would be great to talk to him about his ideas and inspiration.

Violet: What is your favorite TV show/movie from your childhood?  What is it now?
Lauren: I’ve always been obsessed with anything supernatural. As a child I would watch programmes like Eerie Indiana and Are you afraid of the dark? As I grew up I moved onto Strange but true and Jonathan Creek, anything that would give me a scare. I now love shows like The Walking Dead and American Horror Story.

Thank you Lauren and good luck with your new release!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

I am broken but not fragile, I shimmer but do not shine

Yes, you read that right. I admit it now because it is Christmas and at Christmas you tell the truth, right? I have all but lost my Christmas spirit, clinging to the damaged threads for the sake of my children who still glow with all of the excitement and expectation of Christmas Day. We are baking cookies and turning on the twinkling lights every night, singing carols and listening to them as often as we can. Still I carry this emptiness, wearing it like an open wound rather than a badge of pride. I have frequently contemplated this idea over the last few weeks, mulling over the transparent wound and how it came to be a part of me. To this end I have come to understand and accept a few truths that I previously could not face or simply did not want to.
I. Am. A. Fraud. I walk through every day at a job that I do not dislike but does not bring me joy. I live in a town that allows me to survive but does not feel like home. I smile at strangers and acquaintances, wearing the clothes I am expected to wear and saying the words I am expected to say. But inside I am screaming. I spent more than thirty years searching for my identity, more than thirty years chiseling away the things that did not quite fit but now I am wrapping myself in those very things I worked so hard to strip away. I’ve tried on different careers, different dreams, and different homes. I’ve done what I had to in order to survive, at times barely able to tread water through the dense waters. Now I look at my life and realize that I truly am a fraud wearing whatever skin I find, no matter how ill-fitting it may be. I wonder what happened to me and how I got here. I wonder if I will ever find my way back to the most honest version of myself, no masks or walls, just me.
This is about more than not being able to have my dream job, I am not deluded enough to believe I am the only person who is unable to make a living doing what s/he loves. Do not misunderstand me, I appreciate my job and it is exponentially better than what I have done in the past. I simply am stating that I put a lot of effort into appearing enthusiastic or outraged or proud or whatever strong emotion I should feel at a particular moment in order to disguise my complete apathy. I think my colleagues are on to me though. In fact, I am certain they are aware of my ruse. I attend trade shows and meetings and it is apparent that I do not belong. I lack the passion. I see it in their faces, a light that does not burn in me.
It is about more than living in a place I cannot call home. I’ve tried. Truly. I have tried my entire life to find that feeling of home here in Ohio. I even built a lovely house once. I decorated it in my colors and tastes, customized the kids’ bedrooms and for a time I almost loved it. Almost. There are two places in this world that have ever felt like they could be home to me and I was able to live in one while the other will likely never be a possibility. I should never have left the first. The “me” inside was screaming the whole time I was packing, shrieking even, yet I did not listen because I did not think it possible to fight the things dragging me back to Ohio. And, a part of me had hope. A part of me was foolish enough to hope for something that the other “me” knew was not possible. If I had only listened to the inner “me” I may not be the fraud I am now.
This is even about more than working so hard to be a room parent at a school full of parents who care nothing for me or my “kind.” I have not missed that I do not belong there either. It has been painfully obvious from day one, and only become more apparent with every event. Still, I don the mask and grace the halls for my children. For now they fit. I hope that does not change. But that is an entirely different post. This one is about me and how I am a fraud. This is about how I am failing myself and ultimately my children who have seen the real “me.” I tell my children not to settle. They see me settle every day. I tell them to fight for what is right, not just for the world but for them. They see that I do not. I am boisterous and indignant when I simply want to be left alone. I am quiet and withdrawn when I’d rather be arguing a point. How did this happen?
I have been talking with a friend, a delightfully optimistic person who sees me as far fairer than I truly am and for that I am grateful. Still, I should tell this friend everything. I should tell this person the truth of how broken I am and how it happened. I should not hide my past from those I meet, should not allow them to continue the sunshine and daisies ideas about me. I am not sunshine and roses. Perhaps I once was but that was before I met myself.
And to that end comes the truth of all truths. That one fact I could not face, or did not want to until now. The person who knew me best in the world, the person who loved me best could not handle me in the end. I am not an easy person to love; I know this and always have. I am passion and fire and loyalty and I expect much of the people I love. I expect them to be as loyal as I am. I expect them to be as fierce and passionate as I am – about anything they want so long as they are fierce and passionate about something. I expect them to pull their weight in the relationship and let me into their world. I spent a lot of time trying to convince myself and everyone else that I could settle for less. I tried to compromise things that should not be compromised. I am not taking the full blame for my failed marriage but I am accepting my part in the downfall, my mistakes and my own failures. I again was a fraud and it cost me my husband and my best friend, it cost my children so much more. I was a fraud because I allowed myself to put so much into a relationship with somebody who stopped giving equal effort and I knew better.
So here lies my conundrum. In some aspects of my life I do what I can to blend though I merely end up straddling the line of accepted and outlier. I applied this same compromise to my marriage and lost miserably. Is it better to grab hold of “me” and stay true in light of the consequences? And yes, I am aware that many will say “those who truly love you will love you no matter what” but, respectfully, to those people I say that in 35 years I have not witnessed that love from any other than my parents, siblings, and children. For that I know I am lucky, to have six wonderful people to love me that way but should there not be others? Am I impressively difficult to love or utterly impossible to love? Is it better to suppress and/or destroy the “me” that will forever be on the outside looking in so that I can become a Stepford and blend? Would love built on a fake, lesser version of me be fulfilling? Is that even an option? Doutbful. No. Definitely not an option. So what then is the answer? I guess that’s why I wrote this. I do not have an answer though I know that something must change. Perhaps now that I have made the admission and connected all of the thoughts an answer will present itself. Look there, a little optimism…

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Jingle Bells, Mistletoe & Magic Virtual Ebook Fair

Looking for that extra special read this holiday season?  Snow storms getting you down and leaving you craving a great book with your cup of cocoa?  We have everything you need at the Virtual Ebook Fair!  What are you waiting for??  Dive on in!!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Presenting a fabulous new release by L.A. Ramsey - PRICELESS

Have you ever wondered if there was any sin that God's grace doesn't cover?  Does a person live who has fallen so deeply in the mire of sin that even God's love and mercy can't reach?  Even when all hope seems lost and you think life is no longer worth living, God's love shines through...somehow...
He works in mysterious ways, even when we make the conscious choice to deny Him.  He wishes for no one to be lost.  No one...
Priceless - Love's True Worth is such a story, a coming of age romance about a young girl faced with almost more than she can handle.  Her life leads her to ill choices that lead her down a dark and unworthy path...until she meets him...until he introduces her to the One who can reach down and save her.  The question remains, will she accept it?  Will she change her ways?
From the back cover...

Of what value is a life?  For some the cost of companionship is a few dollars while to others the cost is a lifetime of commitment to another.  Annequin’s life in Shady Grove begins simply enough, a caricature of the early lives of many young girls who find themselves the victims of circumstance.  Loss and a lack of deep caring in her home eventually drive this beautiful young woman away from her difficult home life to another life that she believes will be her way to happiness.  As far too many in Annequin’s position discover, the road chosen is sometimes paved with pain and disappointment.  With time and the testing of a young heart and soul, the woman from Shady Grove learns the true meaning of love and grace given by others.

Why I Wrote Priceless
I wrote this novel wanting to show that not everyone starts on a pristine path to his or her Christian walk.  Some people may have unfortunate circumstances that leads them down the dark paths of sin and then choose to turn their back on the One who can redeem them.  In Priceless, I show that no matter how dark the night may be, God's light can find a way.
Priceless is available as a digital download on Amazon Kindle, Nook, SmashWords, and soon on Kobo, iTunes, and Sony.  Priceless is available on Amazon as paperback too.

LA Ramsey enjoys writing about her faith in novels from her home with her husband and six children.  Priceless was 19 years in the making.  This is her second novel.  Her first novel is Sunny Beam - The Holy Lion, a Christian romance, available on Amazon. 

Find Lori at:  LA Ramsey, Facebook , Pinterest, and Twitter.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

In my absence....

I've been busy.  I completed NaNoWriMo (YAY!) and that consumed most of my spare time in November, especially over the holiday weekend.  As it turns out IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS is just too long and the reason it wasn't working for me is that it needed to be stretched out and that is my plan.  I hope to have the first installment released Spring 2014 barring any unforeseen setbacks.  Look for IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS updates over the next several months!

Also, I have to comment on a book I just read.  I did it.  I finally gave in and read Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris. I've read the entire series and I noticed that as it went on it lost a lot of its appeal.  The last few books were rather disappointing in my opinion and this final chapter was abysmal.  I was utterly and completely disappointed in the entire book and had to push myself to complete, half hoping it would get better in spite of all of the fan comments I'd already read.

** WARNING: SPOILERS from here on ** 

It wasn't so much Sookie ending up with Sam (though I was not happy about it) as how disjointed the book felt and some of the random occurrences including Arlene's reappearance and subsequent murder, Steve Newlin's reappearance, and the bizarre "divorce" of Eric and Sookie.  It was all so convoluted.  Sookie did not even talk like she had in previous books.  It was forced and frankly, a complete let down.  I loathe the lack of build up to Sam and Sookie getting together.  It felt like she was settling for him instead of finally realizing she wanted to be with him.  

In short, I was shocked and disappointed by the complete implosion of the series.