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I TALKED TO 150 WRITERS AND HERE’S THE BEST ADVICE THEY HAD
JOE FASSLER ON SEVEN OF THE MOST COMMON WRITING TIPS

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If you’re a writer of short stories, you shouldn’t miss this opportunity from Sally Cronin!

If you have not heard, I am packing my bags, polishing my dancing shoes and working with weights to get my arms hugging fit.  I am off on June 9th to London so that I can finally attend one of the …

Source: Smorgasbord Short Stories Lit Fest- June 9th – 12th -Storytellers wanted – Sally at the #Bloggersbash | Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life

Hi all:

Today I’m pleased to take part in the Blog Tour for a great novel by author Amy Metz Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction. I truly enjoyed the novel and I’m including my review later on. I leave you some details about the author and the book first. Ah, and don’t miss the chance to take part in the Giveaway.

Amy Metz, author

Amy Metz, author

 

 

About the author
Amy Metz is the mother of two sons and is a former first grade teacher. When not actively engaged in writing or enjoying her family, Amy can usually be found with a mixing spoon, camera, or book in her hands. She lives in Louisville, Kentucky and can be found at:

http://amymetz.com.

Contact details:
email:

amy@amymetz.com
Twitter:
@authoramymetz
Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/AuthorAmy Metz

Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction by Amy Hertz

Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction by Amy Metz

Murder & Mayhem In Goose Pimple Junction by Amy Metz

Over one month on Amazon Best sellers lists
Murder & Mayhem In Goose Pimple Junction is a humorous southern mystery that will keep you laughing and guessing until the very end.

_____________________________________

 

Tess Tremaine starts a new life in the colorful town of Goose Pimple Junction thinking she’s moved to a quiet little burg. Curiosity leads her to look into a seventy-five-year-old murder, and suddenly she’s learning the foreign language of southern speak, resisting her attraction to local celebrity Jackson Wright, and dealing with more mayhem than she can handle.
A bank robbery, murder, and family tragedy from the 1930s are pieces of the mystery, which Tess attempts to solve. As she gets close to the truth, she encounters danger, mystery, a lot of southern charm, and a new temptation for which she’s not sure she’s ready.

Amazon Best seller lists:
Top 100 in Books & Kindle Women Sleuths

Top 100 in Books & Kindle Mystery
Top 100 in Author ranking Books & Kindle Mystery

Review summary:
Rated 4.3 out of 5 stars on Amazon from 125 reviews
“The author has created a cast of characters that are quirky and lovable. Their southern charm, crazy antics and hysterical dialogue will keep you in stitches.”
–Kathleen Anderson, Jersey Girls Book Reviews

“This book will soon be a favorite for all southerners. Very rarely do you find an author who can respectively capture the essence of the south and that quaint southern charm, but Amy Metz has done just that.”–Jennifer, of Southern Belle

“Enticed by a mystery, riveted to the swoon-worthy romance and tickled by the “countrified” life, I was thoroughly entertained on all levels.”–Carmen Pacheo, The Reading Cafe
Book trailer:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vIbieSgVjk

Book details:
Publisher: Southern Ink Press
Kindle and Paperback: 256 pages
Word count: 93,000
Genre: Mystery, humor
Available from: online stores such as amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com (see links below)

ISBN-13: 978-0989714037 (eBook)
SRP: $2.95
ISBN-13: 978-0989714020 (paperback)
SRP: $15.95

And now, my review:

Review of ‘Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction’ by Amy Metz.  Cosy mysteries, writers, plenty of humour and Southern flavour.

When I read the title and the description of Amy Metz’s ‘Murder & Mayhem in Goose Pimple Junction’ I knew I had to read it. And I’m sure if I’d gone by a place with a name such as Goose Pimple Junction I would have felt compelled to visit it. And the place and the book were worth the visit.

There are novels where you might enjoy the story and the plot (it might be a clever or complicated one, one that makes you think, takes you to fascinating places you’ve never been or teaches you new things), but maybe you don’t connect with any of the characters. There are books where you feel as if you knew the characters and they could be your best friends, but the story is neither here nor there (you just hope to visit them again when something more interesting is happening), there are books that are wonderful flights of fancy you might follow or not… There are books that seem to have a bit of all in the right amount, and you can’t think of anything else that could make them any better. And there are the books that seem to fit in perfectly with the type of reading you need right at that moment.

‘Murder & Mayhem’ was the type of book that fitted perfectly with what I wanted and needed at the time. Life was a bit too serious for me, and the novel gave me a good laugh. I kept looking forward to Pickles’s T-shirts, to the trips to the dinner to try and guess what the orders would sound like, and to the fantastic conversations, and pratfalls. It has mystery and an interesting story that kept my thoughts engaged (and took me away from some not so nice topics), but not so complicated that it made it impossible not to lose track. It also expands through several generations and follows the families and events that have made the place and the people what it is. It has a gentle love story where the protagonists are writers of a certain age and with backstories but both the salt of the earth (what woman would not love Jack, and Tess is also irresistible), it has unforgettable 4th of July celebrations, strange family liaisons, food, dogs…

Author Amy Metz manages to juggle all the balls and doesn’t let them drop. She keeps the pace of the story, turning from past to present, mixing local flavour with mystery and shady dealings, and creates realistic characters that keep surprising you by refusing to be caricatures or one-phrase jokes. The novel is a good old-fashioned mystery, a great romance, a fun book (without nastiness or bile) and it will leave you with a smile on your face.

If you’re looking for gritty, realistic and bloody crime books, you dislike local character, or expect heavy sex scenes; this will not be your book. But if you’re looking for a fun book, that will keep you reading, laughing and thinking, and will take you away from your day to day life, do not hesitate and read this book. I know I’ve already booked a space for the whole series in my Kindle.

And buy links:

Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/Murder-Mayhem-Pimple-Junction-mysteries-ebook/dp/B00NE1H8FW/

B&N:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/murder-mayhem-in-goose-pimple-junction-amy-metz/1113760741?ean=9780989714020

And the GIVEAWAY (e-books and bookmarks only for the US):

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks so much to Amy Metz for her book, to Shannon from Making Connection Blog Tour, and thanks to all of you for reading and writing, and you know what to do, like, share, comment, and CLICK!

Hi all:

Following on from my short break, where I had a chance to catch up on some reading, I wanted to share some of my most recent reviews. And today I decided on sharing two fairly short books, but completely different.

First, for all the writers who’ve been wondering about Scrivener, or might even have purchased it and wanted a set of easy instructions:

Scrivener Essentials by Karen Prince

Scrivener Essentials by Karen Prince

SCRIVENER ESSENTIALS: A Quick Start Visual Guide For Windows Users by Karen Prince. Easy visual advice from an expert user.

 After hearing many positive comments about Scrivener from other authors, and taking advantage of an offer, I purchased the programme. I went through the video presentation of the features, and I’ve checked other explanations, but they all seemed very convoluted and difficult to remember at the time of actually getting down to writing. Due to that I’d so far hesitated trying to launch a full-blown project in Scrivener.

Thankfully, this book came to the rescue. It is a step-by-step guide, and best still, visual. That means you can actually open the programme and have the book by your side, allowing you to check as you go along. For me, always looking for that button at the bottom right, under the double line, with a non-descript indicator on it, having an arrow pointing, makes a big difference. Another beauty is that the writer, an author herself, gives us her personal tips, things she has discovered through use, that are invaluable (and will not appear in any of the impersonal, “how-to” guides).

The discovery of this short gem has made me feel more confident in trying and using Scrivener. I recommend it to all writers, who, like me, have been wondering for a while about the programme, but been scared by what appear to be never-ending complex explanations. Thanks Karen Prince!

This is the version for Windows users, although Karen has also published a version for Mac users.

Here is the link if you want to check it out yourselves:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00N6QFCS0/

Ah, and Karen has shared videos and other information in You Tube, so don’t forget to check her out!

And, a short while back I saw this book, The Proposal was free and downloaded it. I needed a light read at the time, and I leave you the review I wrote. When I checked at the moment of preparing this post, it’s still free so, if you fancy it, don’t hesitate!

The Proposal by Lily Zante

The Proposal by Lily Zante

The Proposal (A Perfect Match series. Book 1) by Lily Zante. A fun, light read that will keep you turning the pages.

Is a male escort the Perfect Match for a high flying executive creative director of an advertising company? If you read The Proposal you’ll have the answer. Of course, Ethan is much more than just an escort and Nadine isn’t your standard executive either. However, as many tell her through the book; she could end up being one if she doesn’t listen to her heart.

The Proposal reminded me of the movie The Wedding Date that is one of my guilty pleasures. I can’t resist to carry on watching it every time I find it flicking through TV channels. It has a similar plot although in the case of Nadine her difficulties are mostly to do with her professional life. Nadine is a driven woman, focused on her career, who has put her personal life on hold to pursue her goals. She’s pressured by her bitch of a boss, Sandra, and needs to make a good impression during a marketing convention. She needs a boyfriend to share the weekend with her and here is where Ethan, whom she met while he was performing as part of a stripper trio, comes in.

The Proposal is a fun, easy read, with engaging central characters that pull the story together and some fabulous scenes that will make you wish it was a movie.

If you like chic-lit and are looking for a quick and cheerful read you’d be well advised to give it a go. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Here is the link:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ARFOGQ2/

Thanks so much for reading, thanks to the two authors for offering us help and entertainment, and you know what to do, like, share, comment, and CLICK!

Hi all:

Author Jo Robinson

Author Jo Robinson

As you might or might not have noticed, I stopped participating in blogging awards or blog hops that involved nominating other people as I always preferred to make sure the person would have time to do it or it fitted in with their schedule (I tend to prepare and schedule my posts in advance and I know others do too), and found it very time consuming. When wonderful Jo Robinson author of The Ghost Writer Chronicles, a writer and blogger I admire and follow, who produces great content, finds true jewels (I always look forward to her funny posts early in the week) very generous sharing and reblogging other authors, tagged me onto the Meet My Main Characters blog hop unexpectedly, I found myself in a quandary. On the one hand, I’m aware there were at least a couple of other writer friends who had asked if I would take part (I think it was this blog hop although there is also the writing process one doing the rounds, so I’m not so sure), and I told them I didn’t take part in these things any longer. I also realised most of the authors I know have already taken part in it. I did ask one person who said no. On the other hand I thought I should at least thank Jo…And it might be as good a chance as any other to tell you a bit about the book I’m working on (I’ve completed the draft and I’m editing it. As I’ll also publish it in Spanish there’s some time to go yet). And although I won’t nominate anybody, if somebody who hasn’t taken part yet and reads this post wants to do it, please be my guests!

Lesser Being, Emmeline (draft cover) by Jo Robinson

Lesser Being, Emmeline (draft cover) by Jo Robinson

And without further ado, here are the questions.

1. What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historic person?

I’ve decided to talk about the novel in progress I’m working on now. My working title (that it’s likely to be the final one) is ‘I Love Your Cupcakes’. There are two main characters (well, three, although two appear a bit more than the third one), Dulce and Adelfa. They are two childhood friends and they’re fictional. The third one, Sebastian, who prefers to be called Storm, is half-brother of Adelfa. But that’s a whole story in its own right and you’ll have to read the book to know about it.

2. When and where is the story set?

The story is set in modern day US, although the place is somewhere in my imagination. I hope a similar place exists and I’d love to visit and even live there.

3. What should we know about him/her?

Dulce is in her early thirties. Her mother was Spanish and she lost her when she was quite young. She had many friends and was a great cook. Her father, an engineer, married the mother of her best friend, Adelfa, who is the other main character in the book. Adelfa studied Chemistry, like her mother, and she teaches at university. Storm is an artist.

4. What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?

Dulce has tried many things in life but hasn’t managed to find her true calling. Encouraged by Adelfa she decides to try and go into business, and with Adelfa and Adelfa’s half-brother, Storm they set up a pretty special cake shop. The story takes place in two periods of time, one covering the setting up of the shop, and one, a few years later, when the team have been entered into a TV baking competition.

5. What is the personal goal of the character?

Dulce wants to prove that she can be good at something and has a talent. Adelfa is very good at her job but doesn’t seem to manage to make any of her relationships last. She wants to become as successful in her personal life as she is in her professional life.

Cupcake flower

Cupcake flower

6. Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?

I Love Your Cupcakes. At some point in the novel a character tells Dulce ‘I love your eyes’ and she observes that it makes a change from ‘I love your cakes or your cupcakes’ that is what she hears most of the time. I tend to update my website and my social media sites with news, and I’ll definitely be posting in my blog with updates.

http//www.OlgaNM.com

7. When can we expect the book to be published?

I’m in the process of correcting and editing it. I always publish my books both in Spanish and English so there’s the process of translation yet to come but I hope sometime in the Autumn…I think it would make a nice Christmas present.

As I mentioned I’m not going to be tagging anybody, but if anyone wants to tell us something about their characters, please, I’d love to hear, and don’t worry about tagging me back!

Thanks for reading and if you’ve enjoyed it please, share, comment, like and of course, take part if you want! And CLICK!

Seaside N. 1 Fire Station (MA)

Seaside N. 1 Fire Station (MA)

And yes, there is a reason why I post a picture of a fire-station. And it has to do with the book…Now, you’ll have to wait and read it!

By the way, Teagan Geneviene (thanks Teagan!) just reminded me of my Pinterest boards. I have two that are related to the book. One has cupcakes, sweets and treats, and I can’t help adding more to it, so you might want to check it (but not if you’re hungry!):

http://www.pinterest.com/olganm7/food-ideas-for-pos-book/

And the other one has fire-stations and related things (no, I’m not telling you why…but you might work it out):

http://www.pinterest.com/olganm7/fire-stations-settings/

If you find relevant pins, let me know! I keep adding on to my collection! Thanks!

 

Hi all:

I was wondering about what to write and had a few ideas, but this being (mostly) a blog about writing, books, writers (with other fancies in the mix, like film reviews, comments about family history, fitness regimes, mindfulness…), I thought and invitation to visit Wattpad wouldn’t be amiss. I suspect most of you must know this site by now. According to Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wattpad

‘Wattpad is an online community themed around writing and story-telling.’ The site brings together readers and writers, and it is free for both. Wattpad is based in Toronto, and was born in 2006 of collaboration between Allen Lau and Ivan Yuen.  They have received funding, have included classics from Project Gutenberg, have been accused of turning a blind eye to piracy, have introduced awards, have created Apps…

According to Wikipedia, 5 out of 10 users are in the US although its use is widespread.

I was introduced to it by writer Frank Spoiler, who is quite fond of the site (so it’s evidently used in Spain too) and was intrigued.

How do writers use it?

That varies. As far as I can gather from the site, some people seem to exclusively publish their work in Wattpad. Some people publish snippets of their work, a couple of chapters, or shorter fiction (short stories) to get people interested in their writing. Some authors publish complete works, but in instalments, like Charles Dickens and many other Victorian novelists used to do. They use Wattpad as a way of testing their work, gathering reactions, comments. It also can serve as a prompt to carry on writing, especially if you get many comments and people tell you they’re waiting for the next chapter. Frank, for example, published his latest novel, ‘Soy un asesino…sin serie’ (I’m an assassin…without a series’) by instalments in Wattpad, receiving many positive comments. Now the book has been published in Amazon and as a result is no longer available in Wattpad. (Sorry, at the moment his novel is not available in English.)If you’re a writer you can send messages to all your followers. You can also dedicate a chapter or a whole book to somebody. You can also suggest the cast for your story, the actors who could play the parts, and you can also add pictures and videos (there is plenty of fan-fiction.) There are also contests and groups, but I haven’t had much time to investigate those.

If you are a reader, you can follow people’s work and then you get notified when they publish something new. Apart from leaving comments in people’s work and voting for it if you like it, you can also send direct messages to people there.  As a reader I have discovered very interesting people there, although must admit  I find quite difficult sometimes the reading in instalments, as in many occasions I discover somebody half-way through a book or a story and struggle to find time to go back to the beginning. But hey, I enjoy it nonetheless. And the variety of stuff you can find there is mindboggling. You can join groups to fit your specific reading interests and there are groups for artist who like to create covers and get experience trying new things.

What has my experience been like? Well, not sure. I’m still not very familiar with the site, and realised that if you’re doing a series of a whole book you should add parts rather than publishing them independently (that is what I started doing with a book I wrote many years back. Now I have gone back and republished it linking it all together, but that results in numbers of readers for the individual chapters disappearing. I still don’t know why many more people read chapter 2 than any other chapters). As I was taking quite long translating my latest book (now published) to Spanish, I decided to get people a bit more interested by publishing the first story complete in Wattpad, in Spanish. I started with the idea of publishing only the beginning of the three stories, but people seemed intrigued and felt it was only fair. In case you read Spanish, I leave you the link at the end of the post.  I mostly get comments from people I know, but  I have the odd comment by people I don’t.

Now I’m writing the second book on a series of Young Adult books I’m working on, ‘Angelic Business’. I have started publishing the first book in the series, already finished, called ‘Pink Matters’ (the main protagonist is a girl called Petra but she prefers to be called Pink… and if you want to know anything else, go and read it!), as a way of keeping me going with the writing, and to give me an opportunity to see what the reaction is like. So far, there are some stars and readers, but no comments…We’ll see.  Just in case you fancy having a look, here it is:

Draft cover for Pink Matters (Angelic Business 1)

Draft cover for Pink Matters (Angelic Business 1)

Link to Angelic Business 1. Pink Matters in Wattpad

http://www.wattpad.com/story/12042085-angelic-business-1-pink-matters

Una vez psiquiatra... Diseño de Ernesto Valdés

Una vez psiquiatra… Diseño de Ernesto Valdés

And if you read Spanish, enlace a  la primera historia de ‘Una vez psiquiatra…’ ‘Carne de cañón’

http://www.wattpad.com/28235987-una-vez-psiquiatra-carne-de-ca%C3%B1%C3%B3n

Thanks for reading, and you know, if you’ve enjoyed it, please like, share, comment and CLICK!

The image of the draft cover of Pink Matter is  courtesy of farconville / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I leave you a link to a very interesting article I found on serialised writing (it does mention Wattpad):

http://writerunboxed.com/2014/02/24/serial-fiction/

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