Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Phobic by Cortney Pearson - OUT NOW!

 
 
 
Book & Author Details:

Phobic by Cortney Pearson
(The Forbidden Doors #1)
Publication date: September 8th 2014
Genres: Horror, Young Adult

Synopsis:
Fifteen-year-old Piper Crenshaw knows her house is strange. It’s never needed repairs since it was built in the 1800s, and the lights flicker in response to things she says. As if those things aren’t creepy enough, it’s also the place where her mother committed murder.
To prove she’s not afraid of where she lives, Piper opens a forbidden door, which hides a staircase that leads to the ceiling. That’s when the flashbacks of the original residents from 1875 start, including a love affair between two young servants. Each vision pulls Piper deeper into not only their story, but also her house. Piper confides in her best friend, Todd, whom she’s gradually falling for, but even he doesn’t believe her. At least, not until her house gets axed during a prank, and the act injures Piper instead, cutting a gash the size of Texas into her stomach.
Piper realizes her house isn’t haunted—it’s alive. To sever her link to it, she must unravel the clues in the flashbacks and uncover the truth about her mother’s crime, before she becomes part of her house for good.


Purchase

AUTHOR BIO
Cortney Pearson is a book nerd who studied literature at BYU-Idaho, a music nerd who plays clarinet in her local community orchestra, and a writing nerd who creates stories for young adults. She lives with her husband and three sons in a small Idaho farm town.

Author links:


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Monday, 8 September 2014

A HUGE thank you!

Good morning!

I just wanted to extend a gigantic thank you to everyone who took part in the Cats Protection Anthology Bloghop on Friday! I was overwhelmed by every single entry, and when this book is put together, it is going to be superb. I will keep you  updated on the progress - I hope to have at least a rough idea of a release date by the end of the week.

I promised a $10 Amazon gift voucher to one random participant in the bloghop, and that winner is: Sarah Foster! Sarah, I will be in touch probably tomorrow about this - if I don't get back to you, please make sure to remind me as I have a crazy busy week (again).

Thanks again, everyone!

Friday, 5 September 2014

Cats Protection Anthology Day!!

Good morning, everyone!

I am SO excited because it's finally time for the Cat Anthology bloghop!





The details:

The story MUST have a cat in it (obviously :p )

You can write a story within your usual genre - even if it's a sci-fi cat, or a paranormal cat, or a love story that has a cat in it

You can write a poem if you prefer

The absolute maximum word count is 2500 words

All entries must be edited by the author prior to publication

You MUST write somewhere on your post that you allow permission for me to use your work in the book

You must also attach a short bio and one link to a place people can find you online

Authors retain copyright for any work submitted to the anthology, and can republish their own work elsewhere, with the understanding that all proceeds for THIS anthology will be going to Cats Protection (Teignbridge and Totnes Branch). 

**
 Okay, so, here is my entry. You may recognise these characters if you've read my novella, If I Let You Go!

Santa Claws


“Madison, can we go home yet?”
Tilly tugged on my hand, bouncing up and down on the balls of her feet. Hard as she tried, she couldn’t hide the fact that she knew a surprise awaited her when we got home. I should have found a better hiding place for the kitten toys and cat adoption information, but how was I to know she would rummage through my wardrobe in search of suitable shoes for dressing up? I’d caught her holding a catnip mouse and staring at the kitten on the front of the “How to Take Care of Your Cat” book I’d hidden under a pile of clothes, and when she heard my footsteps, she threw the mouse back in the cupboard and somehow emerged holding onto my favourite pair of Irregular Choice heels, a look of innocence on her face.
“Not yet,” I told her. “I thought you wanted to go to the toy shop and look for things to put on your Christmas list.”
“Santa already knows what I want. Let’s go!”
I’d taken her out for lunch to her favourite pizza place while the last minute bits of the “surprise” were tied together, and I had to keep her out until I got a text to let me know everything was ready. I hoped for the sake of my sanity it wouldn’t be too much longer, because Tilly had been begging me to take her back to the apartment pretty much since we walked out the door. Even her favourite sickly sweet dessert didn’t take her mind off the fact that there would be a kitten waiting for her when we returned.
It was difficult to hide my own glee because there was an extra surprise awaiting her, one she could never have guessed.
“What’s the rush?” I asked, wondering if the six-year-old bundle of happy at my side would confess she knew something was up.
Her cheeks flushed briefly, and she pulled me along the street. “I just want to go home now. You said we were going out for lunch. We’ve had lunch, so we can go.”
“Not so fast.” I stopped. Her hand slid out of mine and she stumbled forward a few paces, her momentum still strong.
“Madison! Come on!”
I took her hand in mine again and steered her towards the toy shop. “This is supposed to be a girls’ day out. So let’s shop.”
Tilly groaned, realising she wasn’t going to wear me down. As we walked, I couldn’t help but breathe in the cold November air as it whipped around us, leaving a pleasant sting on my cheeks. It was only early afternoon but there was a wintery darkness all around us. Lights from Christmas trees glistening in shop windows made the usually bland streets look like a winter wonderland, and a little shiver of happiness rippled through me because we were getting closer to the best Christmas ever.
Things in the Hartley household had been a little manic recently. In fact, since Tilly’s dad, Dominic, left to work in New York just over nine weeks ago, our lives had been tipped upside down. The lines of my job as Tilly’s live-in nanny, and then becoming Dominic’s girlfriend, had blurred in ways neither of us had expected, but while he was away we both agreed we’d – mostly – continue as employer/employee until he came home in three weeks and we would spend out first Christmas as an actual family.
The chaos had been added to when Dominic’s mum, brother, sister-in-law, niece and nephew had come to visit two days ago. They weren’t all staying with us, just Dominic’s mum, Jane, but it had thrown our routine a little out of kilter. I couldn’t complain though. I loved them all and they were an integral part of my plans.
As we reached the window of the toy shop – an impressive festive display of bright tinsel and fairy lights surrounding a selection of toys Father Christmas’ elves would envy - Tilly let out a heavy sigh.
“What’s wrong?” I asked.
She peered up at me from beneath her long lashes. “There’s just too much to choose from.”
“I thought you were after the Sylvanian Families canal boat and some more animals?”
“But which animals? There are so many to choose from.”
It was true. She already had enough to start her own toy pet shop, but there were plenty more she hadn’t got her hands on yet.
“I think the chocolate bunnies are cute,” I said, pointing to them.
Tilly nodded. “I like them. But I like the cats too. I wonder what my cat will-”
Her eyes widened and she slapped her hand over her mouth. With a roll of my eyes, I said, “Matilda Rose, did you really think I didn’t know you knew?”
“You knew?” she shrieked. “But… if you knew, why can’t we just go home and see my kitten?”
“Because I have to wait for Nana to let me know she’s picked him up and taken him back to the flat. You’re going to have to act surprised, honey. Nana came a long way to help with this surprise.”
“I can act surprised.” She straightened her face, took a few deep breaths to “centre herself” then let out a large gasp, her jaw dropping before she grinned like the Cheshire Cat and jumped up and down. After a couple of seconds, she stopped, bowed, and said, “Was that okay?”
This kid.
I laughed out loud and pulled her into a hug. I should have felt bad for teasing her. In reality, there would be no need for her to fake shock, but I had to have a little fun. Getting the plans in place had been like a military operation.
My phone buzzed in my bag, and Tilly grinned again as I pulled it out.

All ready. Just text when you get outside so we can put everything in the box before you come in.

I tapped back a quick reply then turned to Tilly. “Okay, the wait is over. We can go.”
“Yay!”

Tilly could barely keep still in the car on the way home, and my own stomach began to bubble with excitement too. I’d been waiting for this day just as much as Tilly. Trying to keep secrets from her was hard – I’d never done that before. But it would be worth it when she saw what was waiting for her.
After parking the car in the underground car park, I sent a message to Jane to tell her we were coming up the stairs.
“Are you ready to pretend to be surprised,” I asked, trying to stall us just a little to give Jane more time.
“I’m ready.”
The butterflies in my stomach intensified as we began our walk up to the flat. I wanted to talk to Tilly on the way, but I was too excited to form any words. Beside me, Tilly seemed to feel the same way, so we exchanged happy smiles, saying nothing.
I unlocked the front door, and there stood Jane beside a large cardboard box in the middle of the hallway.
Without missing a beat, Tilly’s eyes narrowed. “What’s that?”
Yup. Definitely worthy of an Oscar.
“It’s a gift for you,” Jane told her. “An early Christmas present.”
“For me?”
She glanced up at me, mischief dancing in her eyes behind her faked confusion.
“Yes, it’s for you,” I confirmed, trying to resist rolling my eyes again.
Cautiously, Tilly approached the box, as I considered how much it would cost to send her to stage school. She lifted the lid, and I bit on my bottom lip, waiting with anticipation for her to see her real surprise.
Tilly screeched and stumbled backwards as Dominic rose from the box, holding a sleeping, tiny, grey fluffy kitten carefully in his arms.
“Daddy!”
“Hi, baby girl.”
Still in shock, Tilly stared at her father; I didn’t think she’d even noticed the kitten yet. I glanced at Jane, and we smiled at each other as Dominic stepped out of the box. He crouched down in front of it and Tilly ran towards him, halting when she finally spotted her new pet.
“Oh my goodness!” she gasped.
Dominic lifted his free arm and wrapped it around Tilly, and her head fell onto his shoulder as she squeezed him tight.
“What are you doing here?” she asked. “You said you wouldn’t be home until Christmas!”
“Well,” Dominic began, “I’ve worked very hard, and my boss said I could come back early. No more New York. No more long business trips. I’m home.”
Tears misted my eyes. Of course, I knew he was coming home early, but the truth of it, that we would finally get to all be together without Dominic leaving all the time was the best thing I could have asked for.
Tilly cautiously reached out her hand towards the kitten, then drew back. Jane and I both walked towards them, and I kneeled down on the floor beside Dominic. He turned to give me the kiss I had waited so long for.
“I missed you,” he said.
“Missed you too.”
Our kitten wriggled in Dominic’s hand, as if asking for attention, and he slowly opened his eyes.
“Aww,” Tilly said in a soft voice. “Can I hold him?”
“Of course,” Dominic said. “He’s yours.”
Tilly sat down on the floor as Dominic handed the little ball of fluff to her. She ran a gentle finger across the top of his head. “He’s so soft.”
“What are you going to call him?” Jane asked.
For a moment, Tilly pondered her grandmother’s question before her face split into a huge smile.
“I think I’ll call him Santa.”

** 
Okay peeps, now go and check out everyone else's entries!

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Another quickie!

Hey guys! Sorry to post and run - I am still officially on a blog break until next week but I just wanted to post a small reminder that the Cat Anthology bloghop is NEXT FRIDAY! Looking forward to seeing all of your entries! Hugs to all!

Friday, 8 August 2014

Music To Write By - A Guest Post from M.J Fifield

I have the awesome M.J Fifield here with me today as part of her blog tour for Effigy! Take it away, M.J!
Music To Write By, Part Two

Earlier this week, I talked about the music I write by, and how I create story-specific playlists for each book. Today, I thought I would continue that theme, by taking a closer look at some of Effigy's key tracks.

Music catches my attention first, but the lyrics ultimately determine if the song earns a spot on a playlist. Here are three songs which did just that:

Do What You Have To Do by Sarah McLachlan. If you've happened to have read Effigy, this song pairs with a scene at the end. It might be an odd choice with which to start, but this was the very first song to make Effigy's playlist, and the only song that has survived every revision of said playlist (as the story evolved, so did the music). I find this entire song to be so freakin' gorgeous, and every single line applies so perfectly to the scene, but the key lyrics are:

What ravages of spirit/ conjured this tempestuous rage/ created you a monster/ broken by the rule of love

My Skin by Natalie Merchant. It doesn't have a specific scene with which it pairs, but if Haleine Coileáin had a theme song, this would be it. Key lyrics include:

I've been treated so wrong/ I've been treated so long/ as if I'm becoming untouchable/ I'm a slow dying flower/ frost killing hour/ the sweet turning sour/and untouchable

Iris by The Goo Goo Dolls. Effigy has a love story in it. As you can probably guess from the first song listed, it may not end particularly well, but there is a love story. This song is from the happier times. Key lyrics include:

And I'd give up forever to touch you/ 'cause I know that you feel me somehow/ you're the closest to heaven that I'll ever be/ and I don't want to go home right now

Do you ever come across songs which embody your stories, scenes or characters?

Thanks for stopping by today, and thanks to Kyra for hosting me today!

The survival of a once-mighty kingdom rests in the hands of its young queen, Haleine Coileáin, as it slowly succumbs to an ancient evil fueled by her husband's cruelty.

A sadistic man with a talent for torture and a taste for murder, he is determined to burn the land and all souls within. Haleine is determined to save her kindgom and, after a chance encounter, joins forces with the leader of the people's rebellion. She gives him her support, soon followed by her heart.

Loving him is inadvertent but becomes as natural and necessary as breathing. She lies and steals on his behalf, doing anything she can to further their cause. She compromises beliefs held all her life, for what life will exist if evil prevails?

Her journey leads to a deceiving world of magic, monsters, and gods she never believed existed outside of myth. The deeper she goes, the more her soul is stripped away, but she continues on, desperate to see her quest complete. If she can bring her husband to ruin and save her people, any sacrifice is worth the price—even if it means her life.


Add it on Goodreads

About the Author:

Armed with a lasting love of chocolate, purple pens, and medieval weaponry, M.J. Fifield is nothing if not a uniquely supplied insomniac. When she isn't writing, she's on the hunt for oversizedbaked goods or shiny new daggers. M.J. lives with a variety of furry creatures—mostly pets—in New Hampshire. Visit her online at mjfifield.com.

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Monday, 4 August 2014

Just Another Manic Monday! (and Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, etc!)

Hello my lovelies!

Long time no blog! I hope you are all having an awesome summer - I have yet to find five minutes to enjoy it, but I'm hoping to do so over the next couple of weeks. This post is really just a flying visit so I can catch you up on what's been happening in my world!

I made a very bold decision to release that rock band book that I've mentioned here but never really explained fully. The release is planned for early November. There is a very important post about that inside me about the story, but for now, here is the blurb, and if you would like to add it to Goodreads, you can do so here.

Nobody Knows

It's not easy being friends with rising rock stars - especially when you're the glue that holds them together.

Razes Hell has taken off in the charts, and Ellie can't believe her childhood friends, Drew and Jason Brooks, are on TV and drawing crowds after years spent playing in dodgy bars. From obscurity to overnight success, Ellie soon realises life in the public eye isn’t all it’s cracked up to be as dark secrets become headline news and old conflicts are re-ignited. When a fake feud meant to boost the band’s popularity threatens to rip the boys apart for real, Ellie finds herself torn – a position which only gets more uncomfortable when her loyalty to Jason collides with her blossoming relationship with Drew.

Nobody knows how deep their issues run; nobody but Ellie. With friendship, a music career and a new love on the line, can Ellie keep their tangled pasts from ruining their futures?


**

I also need to give you a gentle reminder about the Cat Anthology Bloghop on September 5th! I still haven't written my story yet, so if, like me, you need a gentle nudge to remind you - this is it! 

I have been super busy with Cats Protection work - although I haven't had to really leave the house to do any of it yet lol! I have taken on the role of Events Co-ordinator for my local branch, which means I now have actual responsibilities! I'm really looking forward to getting my teeth properly into the role but I have yet to meet my fundraising team - that will be happening at the end of the month.

As I frantically finish  typing this message, I want to apologise for my total lack of blogging skills lately - the time of year and the amount of stuff I suddenly have to do is challenging me and I haven't figured out how to juggle it all yet! I'm working on it though! :D 

Have a great week, guys!

 

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

It's Here! Effigy by M.J. Fifield is out now!

It's Effigy Release Day!

EFFIGY (Epic Fantasy), Book One in the Coileáin Chronicles
by M.J. Fifield

Release date: July 22, 2014

Now available in paperback and on Kindle at Amazon and CreateSpace (other editions to follow soon!)

The survival of a once-mighty kingdom rests in the hands of its young queen, Haleine Coileáin, as it slowly succumbs to an ancient evil fueled by her husband’s cruelty.

A sadistic man with a talent for torture and a taste for murder, he is determined to burn the land and all souls within. Haleine is determined to save her kingdom and, after a chance encounter, joins forces with the leader of the people’s rebellion. She gives him her support, soon followed by her heart.

Loving him is inadvertent but becomes as natural and necessary as breathing. She lies and steals on his behalf, doing anything she can to further their cause. She compromises beliefs held all her life, for what life will exist if evil prevails?

Her journey leads to a deceiving world of magic, monsters, and gods she never believed existed outside of myth. The deeper she goes, the more her soul is stripped away, but she continues on, desperate to see her quest complete. If she can bring her husband to ruin and save her people, any sacrifice is worth the price—even if it means her life.



Add it to your Goodreads List!



About the author:

Armed with a deep and lasting love of chocolate, purple pens, and medieval weaponry, M.J. Fifield is nothing if not a uniquely supplied insomniac. When she isn't writing, she's on the hunt for oversized baked goods or shiny new daggers. M.J. lives with a variety of furry creatures—mostly pets—in New Hampshire's Mount Washington Valley. Effigy is her first novel. Visit her online at mjfifield.com, find her on Facebook, or follow her on Twitter.




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