Thursday, August 31, 2017

[SELF-PROMO POST] First Words: Final Lesson

First Words: Final Lesson by Shakyra Dunn

The Final Lesson #0.5
Genre: Fantasy, Aoung Adult
Release date: July 13th, 2017


Synopsis
A recently-crowned princess with a thirst for magic accidentally destroys her home. A simple youthful rebellion grows into a lifelong friendship. A young woman meets reliable allies. And a young boy is dealt a harsh hand when he sets out to make his own path.
Four tales. Four parties. All intertwined to set the stage for a bigger event. The sense of adventure builds as lessons prepare to be learned.

Purchase It

Sneak Peek
Wind chimes echoed through the near-desolate shrine, the salty air flowing through the open window, blowing out the jasmine incense on the polished nightstand. Thunderclaps roared from the outside, and she couldn’t help but grin to herself as she shut her eyes. Abrupt weather changes, a drift in the squalls. The calm before a brewing storm; that was always Leilana Erovina’s ideal time to meditate as a prolific start to her drawn-out morning.

Minsura’s grounds granted her peace, and sitting as the first heir of the kingdom ensured her guarantee to a wholesome life. Isolated, magicless, a free reign to the plight of idealism and growth. The hymns of her people reverberated in passion and solitude. It was as though this closed-off world was shielded behind the clouds, never to touch the cruel workings on the ground below their pedestal. She heard little about the world furthest east of their country, a place called Adrylis, but she knew that their society was fueled by magic and the power of the Warlords. 

For generations beyond known time, essence and being was headed by the Warlords of old, who crafted all humankind and blessed them with the ability to conjure spells to breathe life into their own little world. Magic itself was a mysterious gift that few in Minsura were given; one of the chosen ones had been her own brother, Ennis.

The oldest of the two, he should have been the one seated at the foot of the shrine, leading Minsura as the first heir to his growing land, but his recent growth in power knocked him down several pegs. Magic was forbidden. She was grateful for the shift due to the quiet change of pace and the chance to better her country with her own hands as its chosen princess, but she didn’t understand why it had to be in this manner. Ennis didn’t ask to suddenly develop a life-threatening illness, saved only by what essence resonated within him from birth. He never asked to be turned away by those he loved for something that he couldn’t control.

A light rain pattered against the floor, and she decided to end her session for the day, getting up from her mat and closing the window shut. She rested her head on the windowsill, astonished blue eyes gazing up at the smoky clouds hastily filed in. As much as she loved Minsura and what the shrines had to offer, she couldn’t help but wonder what lied beyond the only land she had ever set foot on. 

She couldn’t wait for the rain to settle down for long—she was already late getting back home, and her parents would already have a mound of duties waiting for her. Pressing her tiny hands against the large doors holding her, she pushed them open and watched the rain pour down on the stone building above her. She took a seat on the stairs for a moment, tapping her foot along the ground, her right leg bouncing in an anxious matter. How long was it going to be before the rain slowed up?


Author Bio
Shakyra Dunn can't stray away from the impression that there is always an adventure around every corner! When she isn’t playing the role of the Creator, she is marching through the worlds of her favorite video game characters or taking drives around her city to see the sights. Born in Chicago, Illinois, she currently resides in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, striving to experience more than the little town.

Author Links


Monday, August 7, 2017

[TRUTH SERUM] A Day's Events


I'm going to tell you a little story. August 5th, 2012 holds a lot of significance in my life; it was the day that my mother suddenly passed away. I was eighteen years old, a week and a half away from starting college, and it was the moment that my life changed forever.

My mother was the one that raised me, mostly on her own as a single mother, but she had help from others to push me down the right path. Not to say I was a bad kid, nothing of the sort, actually. She primed my love of literature from a young age, and was an avid reader herself. I don't think that I would have become a writer without her guidance.

But this year, August 5th was a day not of sadness, but of opportunity.



I got the chance to participate in a local author event called "Imagine Other Worlds: IOWA." I don't get to attend many events due to my rather annoying night shift schedule, so this one was a dark horse for me.

I wasn't sure how I would fare, as I'm probably one of the new kids still in the industry despite having been published for a year now, and still rather young and inexperienced. But from the start, I was always prepared to learn more, experiment, and see what I could change about my style. And I wasn't at all disappointed.

The hardest thing about attending any sort of convention, large or local, is trying to make yourself stand out, especially if there are multiple other authors in your genre. And I'm still struggling a lot to pitch my work to others, because telling a story aloud can be a hassle, even if you're experienced. But you learn on the go.


Here's what I took from it:

1. Don't be afraid to start up a conversation, even if it's something completely unrelated to your books. This is something that I took from my fellow YA author Jed Quinn. He stated to me after I asked for some advice on how to attract people to you that you should talk to anyone that passes by your booth, strike up a conversation, even if it's just complimenting them. He joked around saying that someone was wearing a Packers jersey, and he hated that team, but if it leaves a mark, then you're sold in at least one way. Even if they don't buy your book, you leave an imprint on them.

2. You can make allies at your events. I made a great new friend in Cassandra Denhartog, sitting right next to me in the YA area! She's really sweet, and she's got skills beyond the border! I think that chance encounter won me more than just some nice conversation, which is always a good thing.

3. Showcase yourself. Being yourself is one of the best things you can be at an event. If you appeal to the right person, you can win yourself some new readers. Personally, I can be rather reserved. But I'm also pretty open and blunt, and Jed actually called me tenacious at a point because I managed to convince him to buy my book. At first, hearing that made me a little nervous, but he reassured me that it's a good thing TO be tenacious in the writing industry, because it shows that you're passionate and willing to push past your barriers.


In the end, I sold four copies of my novella, which got me a little hype towards my future project, "The Final Lesson," but the sales weren't what I thought would help to define me.

My purpose was to build myself a little more, to learn more about what I could do to not only improve my sales, but uncover the depths of what potentials are running within me. I want to be able to travel to other states, promote myself at conventions away from my norm, but to do that, I must first be prepared by starting local.

Imagine Other Worlds was my first real jump into what I think could be the start of something greater, and for this moment, I'm thankful to the coordinators Terri and Dana for giving me the chance to let the *semi* new kid join the fun!





Allow me to introduce my latest release! The e-book is only $.99, and it's a great introduction into the upcoming novel! You can purchase it here!


Wednesday, August 2, 2017

[TRUTH SERUM] A mini-questionaire!

I decided to play a little game with myself, and I wanted to jot it down in a new blog post since it's been a while! I always like sharing a bit of information about myself.

So here goes!

1.) What is your author name? 
~My author name is actually my own birth-given name, Shakyra Dunn!

2.) What is the first book you ever published? 
~That would be "The One Left Behind: Magic." It is the first in a three-part series. It's a YA fantasy novel that has sci-fi elements due to the theme of time travel, rebirth and growth.

3.) What is your publiversary? (The day you released your first book) 
~June 13th, 2016! It was two days before my 22nd birthday.

4.) What is your favorite book you've written thus far? 
~So far, it has to be "The Final Lesson," the project that I'm currently working on.

5.) What book took you the longest to write? 
~"The One Left Behind: Magic," because I've had to essentially rewrite the entire novel from scratch over the course of three and a half years.

6.) How long did it take you? 
~I kind of just answered that.

7.) What kind of music (If Any) do you listen to while you write? 
~Oh, I listen to a variety, but my range goes from rock to J-pop to instrumentals from video games and anime! As I type this, I'm listening to the Final Fantasy XV soundtrack. 

8.) Who is your favorite character from any of your books? 
~It's a tough call, but I have to divide it between three from my current works. It would be Nova Avery from "The One Left Behind," Solus Brenner from "The Final Lesson," and Leilana Erovina from "The Final Lesson." All three of them have similar mindsets, but they execute all of their methods in such different ways and have inter-conflicting personalities. If I had to choose one above the rest though, it would be Solus.
9.) What are you currently working on? 
~"The Final Lesson!" I've been writing it for nearly a year now (It will be a year in November, but I feel that I'll be finished by then), and I've already released a novella prequel in preparation for it.

10.) Do you have anything you snack on while you write? 
~I tend to go more for drinks than snacks, but if I have a snack, I've recently gotten hooked back on ranch-flavored chips.

11.) What is your favorite quote or line from one of your books? 
~Just one? Ooh, let's see... I'm going to cheat. Instead of a quote, I'll use a minor scene. It's one that I liked organizing.

“Gutless coward!” Rem exclaimed, throwing a rock at the traveling carriage as it sped off. “And you’re two hundred coins short! I hope your wheel comes off! I hope that your family doesn’t accept your funds, and that your carriage gets set on fire!”
Solus slapped the young Prince upside the head, his left hand still resting on his hip. “That is quite enough out of you, Remiel. No need to antagonize the patrons. He was just doing his job.” Rem nearly snarled back at the man.
“No, what he was doing was being a coward just because of a bump.”

12.) Are you a self published or traditional published author?
~Self-published, but I'm going to try and switch up to Hybrid after "The Final Lesson" is done. Or maybe before. I haven't decided yet. 

13.) What is your writing inspiration? 
~I take inspiration mostly from my experiences, but I also take inspiration from video games. I love playing RPG's, and they help me shape my love of character conflict.

14.) What genre do you write? 
~Fantasy! But I also write in the YA genre and plan to try out paranormal with my next non-series book!

15.) Do you have any writing rituals? 
~Rituals? No, not really!

16.) Do you have a specific place you write or time? 
~Neither of the above. I just try to write whenever I can and hope for the best.

17.) Do you have any advice for inspiring writers? 
~Never lose hope. It's easy to stray, especially when you're crafting your first book, or even when you start your second or third. Writer's block exists, and when it hits, it's okay to step back and take a break. Take criticism. Listen to what others have already done. 

18.) What are your writing goals? If any? 
~My goal has always been to inspire others to create. I had a hard time accepting my love of writing as a teenager, but once the bug hit, it stuck. Never be afraid to live your dream.

19.) What authors inspire you and your writing? 
~I could write a book on who inspires me, but I'll say for one, Lemony Snicket is a strong part of the reason why I became a writer.

20.) What will be your next release?
~"The Final Lesson," which I'm aiming to have published around October!


Speaking on my novel work, I mentioned my latest release! Well, here it is for your viewing pleasure! The e-book is only $.99, and it's a great introduction into the upcoming novel! You can purchase it here!


Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1548809373
Nook: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/first-words-shakyra-dunn/1126761572

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

[PROMO POST] Josie Carver Books Pt. 2

I'm back--back again, and we're rolling in with part two of Josie Carver's erotica book promotion courtesy of the opposite spectrum of YA and fantasy!


Cassandra’s Unveiling

Damon, his cousin, and four friends converted grandma’s house into a private sex club for people of color. It seemed like a good idea, and the club was starting to turn a profit already—after being open for only a few months.

So, Damon was proud to show it off to his friend and occasional sexual playmate, Cassandra. She’d had a small taste of his freaky side and seemed interested. Damon was interested in finding out how much more this Latina beauty could handle.

What he didn’t expect was to open the door to a side of Cassandra that even she didn’t know existed. It wasn’t just the kink that turned her on. It wasn’t only the submission, either.

Step inside Club Starburst as Damon and his friends help Cass find the sexual freedom and happiness she’s been searching for in ways she didn’t know existed.




Safe and Sane

Rules are for safety. Dungeon Monitors are for protection.

So what do you do when the DM is the one breaking the rules and possibly putting his submissive in danger? Does it matter that they’ve been together for years? Does it matter that this DM is one of the investors in Club Starburst?

Damon isn’t sure how to handle what he’s been observing between Maverick and Desiree. He can’t quite put his finger on what’s wrong. To make the situation even more complicated, Desiree’s old Dominant is watching, too. He was always very protective, and he’s not happy.

What do you do when the play room is filled with tension between friends, when safe and sane are in question, and when respect and rules are being stretched?

If someone has to go, who will it be when everyone involved is an investor with money to lose?




The Dom’s Destiny

Damon didn’t expect Club Starburst to be so successful when he’d first had the idea to open a BDSM club for black folks, but he’d seen a lot of happy relationships form and people grow into fuller acceptance of their sexual proclivities over the months. Everyone seemed satisfied with the way he was handling the club business, but for him, something was still missing.

Until his Destiny walked in the door. No, seriously, her name is Destiny and it only took a few minutes of observing her for Damon to know that he wanted to break her. Then he’d make her his.

Of course, he would set his sights on one of the most difficult new members the club had ever accepted. A submissive who didn’t want to follow the rules. A sassy, beautiful, sexy vixen who turned him inside out and got away with topping him because she was just too distracting for him to keep her in line.

Yeah, he wanted her and he was going to have her... even if his Destiny brought a future full of trouble.

Available for Purchase at: http://bit.ly/jcdomsdestiny

or https://www.amazon.com/dp/ B07336H2DT


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Josie Carver was born and raised in Ohio, where she resides currently. From a young age, she was drawn to romance comic books and novels. Relationships intrigue her. Falling in love fascinates her. She recently decided to write erotic romance stories after discovering a true enjoyment of reading the sub-genre. One thing she hopes to get across in the debut Club Starburst Series is that the power exchange between a man and a woman during intimacy is one of the most vulnerable and powerful experiences people can share if they are brave enough to let go of inhibitions.

Josie desired to create a series with complex characters, so you’ll find a variety of issues affecting the main characters from Cassandra’s Unveiling, Safe and Sane, and The Dom’s Destiny. These stories are about much more than sex because Josie believes that everything about us impacts how we relate to those we are our closest friends and lovers. She spent a lot of time researching the BDSM culture and speaking with people who participate in the lifestyle so that her readers can feel a true appreciation for what she believes is a truly remarkable world. At the end of the day, she believes that this foray and these characters represent the possibilities that can happen when people are unafraid to trust in one another, exercise the power found in knowing themselves, and reach beyond traditional boundaries to find freedom and fulfillment. 

Josie Carver is the erotica pen name of award-winning romance Author Brynette L. Turner. The pen name was chosen to honor her great-grandmother Josephine—a woman of strength, intelligence, bravery, and determination—as well as her favorite middle school teacher, who was one of the people to invest in building her up as a person instead of just seeing her as another student. Creating interesting story lines in a sub-genre that seems taboo to many African Americans is a true act of courage that Josie hopes will make people proud and encourage them to delve deeply into their secret desires and buried needs.

You can reach her at josie.carver.erotica@gmail.com , follow @EroticJosie on Twitter, like her Facebook page at www.facebook.com/EroticJosieAA , and sign up for her newsletter at http://eepurl.com/cBpKGX.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

[PROMO POST] Josie Carver Books Pt. 1

"What? A two-parter? That's rare."

Rare, indeed, but I always love a challenge! And I guess it comes as a bit of a refresher after finishing up a novella that debuted last week and currently reworking my debut novel. All of this in preparation for an author event that I'm attending on August 5th!

But enough about that. For the next two days, I'm going to be acting as a promoter for author Josie Carver and her erotica novels!




So, just who is Josie Carver, you ask? Well, I'll give you a little background info.

Josie Carver was born and raised in Ohio, where she resides currently. From a young age, she was drawn to romance comic books and novels. Relationships intrigue her. Falling in love fascinates her. She recently decided to write erotic romance stories after discovering a true enjoyment of reading the sub-genre. One thing she hopes to get across in the debut Club Starburst Series is that the power exchange between a man and a woman during intimacy is one of the most vulnerable and powerful experiences people can share if they are brave enough to let go of inhibitions.


Josie desired to create a series with complex characters, so you’ll find a variety of issues affecting the main characters from Cassandra’s Unveiling, Safe and Sane, and The Dom’s Destiny. These stories are about much more than sex because Josie believes that everything about us impacts how we relate to those we are our closest friends and lovers. She spent a lot of time researching the BDSM culture and speaking with people who participate in the lifestyle so that her readers can feel a true appreciation for what she believes is a truly remarkable world. At the end of the day, she believes that this foray and these characters represent the possibilities that can happen when people are unafraid to trust in one another, exercise the power found in knowing themselves, and reach beyond traditional boundaries to find freedom and fulfillment. 



Josie Carver is the erotica pen name of award-winning romance Author Brynette L. Turner. The pen name was chosen to honor her great-grandmother Josephine—a woman of strength, intelligence, bravery, and determination—as well as her favorite middle school teacher, who was one of the people to invest in building her up as a person instead of just seeing her as another student. Creating interesting story lines in a sub-genre that seems taboo to many African Americans is a true act of courage that Josie hopes will make people proud and encourage them to delve deeply into their secret desires and buried needs.



You can reach her at josie.carver.erotica@gmail.com, follow @EroticJosie on Twitter, like her Facebook page at www.facebook.com/EroticJosieAA, and sign up for her newsletter at http://eepurl.com/cBpKGX



Now that I've hooked your attention with her background information, tomorrow I'll be providing you with her fantastic books and where you can find them!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

[ANIMANIUS -Miniview-] Bleach: The Movie

It's becoming a bit of a trend to see anime movies getting live action movies or television adaptions. It's almost frightening, yet exciting in the same regard.

But at the same time, looking back and seeing that there are so many of them releasing, you find that not all of them are as decent in quality as their anime counterpart. There's only so much that you can rush into a two hour movie that could easily be drawn out in twelve (or more) twenty-three minute episodes.

In the past, we've had groundbreaking hits such as Ruruoni Kenshin, Nana, and Erased. In contrast, we've also had movies like Attack on Titan that garnered some mixed reviews, and complete flops in the film industry such as Dragonball Evolution. 

Let's just... never speak of the travesties of that movie again, okay?

And now we have the Death Note television show set to premiere soon on Netflix, which is also gaining some rather mixed emotions. But that's a review for another day, when it debuts and I decide to rip it apart, or praise it, whatever comes first. 

Today we're going to talk about the newest one to grace the stage, Bleach.


Bleach is one of the big-sitting anime along the greats of One Piece, Naruto, Fairy Tail, Dragonball, you name it, Bleach is right alongside it. And now it's joined up and getting a live action movie. 

Its trailer just debuted a couple of days ago! You can view it here! While you're watching that, I'll tell you my thoughts on what could come from it, and what I think about Bleach itself.

Bleach:

I watched Bleach as a teenager, and it is to this day the anime of gripe in my eyes. I liked the premise of the show, with protagonist Ichigo Kurosaki, a boy who can interact with spirits, taking up the mantle of becoming a soul reaper bent on eliminating rampant monsters that corrupt the hearts of innocent people. Ichigo himself, fine character... at first. As the anime and manga went on, I found it droning and almost lackluster, especially at the end of the Arrancar arc. Then it just became too much.

The series had a lot of potentials, but it fell way too fast for me. I held on to Bleach from the first episode through episode... 290, I'll estimate, but even bypassing the fillers can leave you with a rather salty taste. Ichigo took on way too many titles throughout his career, and became a bit... Gary-Sueish by the end.


Live Action:

Now, about this trailer. 

I watched it a few times, and while it is only twenty-two seconds long, it leaves a lot of thought.

Ichigo's actor makes me feel a bit... concerned about the direction that they're going to take, but I'm at least thankful that they gave him the hair color that he has in the story. Because an Ichigo without orange hair, which plays a part in not only his namesake, but his age, his background, and many other qualities about the little strawberry boy, is just bad. 

I don't think the trailer is bad for a showcase, but at the same time, it makes me curious about what will happen next. The graphics, they look decent enough when thinking of Bleach's concept. The hazing shadow of the Hollow dissipating behind our hero, the binding glare in Ichigo's eyes... I'm hopeful, and I'm curious to see more of the cast. 

What will Rukia look like, or Orihime? How will they portray Chad or Uryuu? How will they balance Ichigo's school life and his Soul Reaper life? Will Kisuke and Yoruichi play a part this time around? How far into the storyline will the movie go, maybe up to the Soul Society's Rescue Arc? So. Many. Thoughts.

I'm hopeful that there's something more that will turn the tides of the anime/live action franchise. I just hope that my wishes aren't squandered.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

[TRUTH SERUM] A Year as a Novelist

I've wanted to become an author since I was fourteen years old, and one year ago today, I made that dream a reality. 

It was two days before my twenty-second birthday, and after four years of endless turmoil, of hard work, dedication, strife, and an array of growth... I ascended to what became my life's purpose.

June 13th, 2016, I became a published novelist. I made my debut in the industry, and there was so much that I was ready to learn, to see unfold, and to experience as the new kid on the block.

I wasn't disappointed in how much this year has changed me. But it was far from a pleasure cruise. Let me tell you a story about how the first year as a novelist really feels.

The First Day

I'll say this first: writing is not easy. And to this day, it is the most bothersome feeling in the world to be told by someone that couldn't possibly understand that writing a novel isn't a challenge. There's so much effort put into getting the words out, and if you're like me, you probably started your journey with absolutely no knowledge on anything outside of the field. So, after you've typed 'the end,' sent your book off to the world, and you've jumped the gun, congratulate yourself, have a drink (or just something super sweet if you're underage), and breathe! You're ready! 

And I really do mean crazy. 

The moment that your first book is in your hands, I guarantee that you will feel a sense of elatedness that has never washed over you before. "Today, you are official." I remember that I nearly cried when I first held "The One Left Behind: Magic" in my hands. I even got it on video, right here.

It was my first step into the world of creativity as a fresh, published author. Yours will be no different. But the journey doesn't stop there.

That first day that you start your marketing, traditional author or self-published, you're going to struggle, especially if it's your first book. No one will know you. Sharing your book with the world is difficult. You won't always get to be #1 in your category just because you've made your own personal bestseller. And believe it or not, even those family members and friends that promised to buy your book, they don't always follow through with that. It's a cold truth, but one that we eventually come to accept. 

That first step, you're on your own from the beginning, and it's going to frustrate you. But as you work, you find new ways to show off your work to others. One of my favorites so far has been participating in author takeovers (which I'm about to start a day-long one soon!), where you get to showcase your works on Facebook to an invited audience. It's hard to think up the right words to say about yourself, but it's one of the easier experiences I have. Sure, it doesn't guarantee you sales every time, but you definitely get people interested that way.

But keep faith. That first day is one of many to come!


The First Month
Now I'm going to tell you another cold truth: your career as a writer not only depends on sales, but on the reviews and criticism that people give you. And that's something that I came to learn the hard way throughout this first year.

I've been told that my story was poorly executed, worth 2-3 stars. I've been told that my book cover is more suited to middle grade audiences rather than a YA crowd like I aimed for. That it was a mediocre setup. I didn't have the money to pay for an editor at the time, and it was something that dealt me in, played a part in why my book never really broke free from a crowd. It made me feel horrible. I didn't compare to thousands of other people in my field, and it was hard to push away from my failures. The worst thing was learning that my work was never that great because I was too hasty. 

But after tears, it's always the best thing to pick yourself up and do better with your next book. Three stars on a novel is better than one, and it allows you to see your faults in your work. 

You won't always succeed with your first book. And that's okay. 

Someone else is reading your work too, and maybe they'll love it. Or they'll hate it. But you know what? They're reading it. And that's more than what most people can do.

You took the jump. Now free-fall, let the wind hit your face. Have your parachute ready to secure your impact. Rise, and start again.


Taking the Plunge

I was six months into my career when I finally got my first event outside of the online community, participating in Indie Author Day at my local library. It was their first time hosting, and it was amazing to see so many others around me. Though, it was also a bit strange given that I was the youngest person in the room, and therefore, the most inexperienced. 

But that event opened so many doors for me. It allowed me to make connections with amazing people, and it gave me the chance to participate in an upcoming event this August! I also got to join up at a Barnes and Noble book sale, and now I have a spot waiting whenever I can finish editing my book together! 

Taking the plunge means more than falling flat at times. The moment that you become ready to try again, you're able to push yourself past your limits, break your mold, and then you'll unlock so many opportunities. That's one of the fun things about being a novelist. Sales aren't always there, but you learn more to GET them.

And not just in person. Online too. Remember how I talked about attending Author Takeovers? Part of being a novelist is having a strong online presence in a few places. Not a ton, you don't need to go nuts trying to balance it. Pick two or three places that you frequent already, shape your author pages. I have a Facebook, a Twitter, and I frequent this blog! 

And whatever you don't know... there are plenty of people out there that will help you to grow and learn it in a better fashion. 

Make your mark.


Is It Worth It?

That's probably the weirdest question here. Yes, it's always worth it. You spend a lot of money putting it out there, but there's no denying that you'll feel grateful when it's over, and amazed when a paperback is in your hands.

You are a writer, or you're going to be. You carry creativity in your blood, and if you truly crave it, then it will always remain. Or it will consume you until you break it out. 

The first year in your career will be one of your most difficult, but you earn so much from it. 

Step forward. Your future awaits.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

[PROMO POST] Cowboys Forgive: Cowboys of Nirvana

Hey guys! I've got a fast-paced, hot-blooded new read for you all! Cowboys Forgive by Rhonda Lee Carver!


Synopsis:

Taking a dirt bath off a bull lands Jace Jackson into the hands of beautiful, smart, sexy country singer Jessa Garvey. In pain and loopy on pain meds, he has no clue he’s flirting with her, and making a big damn fool of himself. Back in high school she rejected him, and although years have passed, sometimes a cowboy can’t forget. When Miss Priss invades his space at Nirvana, he decides to give her a dose of her own medicine and puts her to work mucking stalls. That’ll teach her…

Or will it?

Trading her guitar for a shovel, Jessa is out to prove to Jace that she isn’t the same person she was as a teenager. As far as she’s concerned, he’ll forgive her even if it kills her, or lands her hot and willing in bed with the dangerously handsome cowboy.


She’s in deep.


Forgiveness is granted, but she isn’t prepared for the choices she must make. Has she changed enough? Does the sliver of selfishness remain?




0_0 Gotta admit, I'm interested in seeing how the relationship between Jace and Jessa unfolds, why he's on pain meds, and maybe a little back-story on them given that they were apparently in high school together.





EXCERPT:

“I’m getting my pants back on. I’m feeling a draft.” He searched the room and found his clothes neatly stacked on the table. As he stepped over to grab them his gown opened in the back, showing off a pair of blue striped boxers. She stifled a giggle. Good thing he wasn’t naked, but good for whom? She wouldn’t have minded. Tight asses were hard to find. 

“Damn!” He gave his head a quick shake. She noticed that he was having some difficulty managing sliding one foot into the leg of his jeans because he was favoring his sore ribs.

“Here, I’ll help.”

She heard his gasp as she knelt before him, helping him slide one leg in, and once that was done, she smiled. “That’s wasn’t too hard.” She looked up and gulped. she was eye-level with his crotch—his bulging crotch.

His eyes fell to her mouth and he didn’t need to say a word for her to realize where his thoughts headed. She couldn’t help herself as her own thoughts stumbled down the same direction. Looking further up his body, he was wide-eyed and a tuft of his hair hung down his forehead.

Clearing her throat, she wasn’t sure where to go from here.

As if he couldn’t help himself, he closed his eyes. Could he be trying to control his thoughts? Things only got worse—or harder. The tip of his erection poked out of the hole in his underwear. He opened his eyes and groaned in humiliation.

With jeans scrunched at his ankles, he took a step back, lost his balance and fell back onto the floor, hitting his head on the metal table sending it crashing against the wall.

“Damn! Son-of-a-gun. Mother fucker!” After the strings of explicits finished, he lifted a hand to touch the back of his head, wincing in pain.

“Jace? Are you okay?” She squatted beside him, helping him sit up. “Does it hurt?”

“No, it feels great.” He touched his ribs lightly.

She bit her lip, not sure what to do to help him at this point. “I’m sorry.”

“I shouldn’t have gotten out of bed this morning.” He moaned. “Go ahead, hit me right here and knock me out.” He patted his cheek.

“I wouldn’t do that.” She frowned.

“Damn pain pills better work!” he groaned.

“Hold on. Let me see what I can do.” She stood, scanned the small area and found an ice bag that he must have been using on his ribs. She brought it over and he watched her, his eyes glazed. Yeah, she’d guess the meds were starting to kick in. She sat next to him and patted her lap. “I’ll ice the back of your head.”

He wrapped his steely arms around her. Their faces were so close she could see a freckle on his cheek. “I’m a little blurry-eyed and wobbly, but you’re beautiful.”

“Yes, you are.”

Before she knew what was happening, he bobbed back and forth then moaned. Just as she’d suspected, she was no resistance against his weight. Together they fell to the floor with him sprawling on top of her, pinning her underneath his unconscious body. “Jace?”

Nothing.

“Hello? Yoo-hoo!” She tapped him on the shoulder. This time she received a deep snore in response.

Oh no. I’m trapped. 

She tried pushing him to the side, but her arms were stuck under him. His snoring grew louder, tickling her ear drum. Her limbs were quickly falling asleep. And if this position wasn’t enough to throw her for a loop, his hand came up and grasped her breast. What should have been pure humiliation skittering through her body, instead was a reminder that she was a woman who craved a man’s touch. A woman who found this cowboy sexy and amazingly virile.

He jerked and she looked down at his profile. He was staring at her. “Jessa? That’s you,” he mumbled. “You, snob, you. I didn’t like your prom dress.”

She froze. So, he did recognize me. Although he was talking out of his head.

“You’re cozy,” he said against her chest. Jessa realized she should be doing her best to get the brawny man off her body, but instead, she found it quite entertaining. And she had a feeling this wouldn’t be the last time she saw Jace Jackson, not if she could help it.


Oooooh, steamy~ I'm definitely curious now!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

At an early age, Rhonda fell in love with romance novels, knowing one day she’d write her own love story. Life took a short detour, but when the story ideas would no longer be contained, she decided to dive in and write. Her first rough draft was on a dirty napkin she found buried in her car. Eventually, she ran out of napkins. With baby on one hip and laptop on the other, she made a dream into reality—one word at a time.

Her specialty is men who love to get their hands dirty and women who are smart, strong and flawed. She loves writing about the everyday hero.

When Rhonda isn't crafting sizzling manuscripts, you will find her busy editing novels, blogging, juggling kids and animals (too many to name), dreaming of a beach house and keeping romance alive. 

Oh, and drinking lots of coffee to keep up with her characters.


Monday, April 17, 2017

[BOOK REVIEW] Eden's Demise

EDEN'S DEMISE

Angelique Anderson

Under witness protection, Adam and Evelyn have just returned from their honeymoon. Evelyn isn't entirely convinced they are safe from Lars Morello.

Once Lars escapes from jail, things take a turn for the worse in an underground place called the 'Arena' where Androids are forced to work for Lars and his assistant.

The Serum has been rejuvenated, and rather than provide immortality, Lars has something worse in mind. Something that will turn humanity into a weapon.

The question is, how many people will have to die before it is perfected?



I had the fortune of joining a mini-review group, and got the chance to read this novel! It acts as a standalone, so I didn't need to read the first novel in advance, which I'm grateful for.

For my review, I broke this story down into three separate categories: the good, the bad, and the ‘meh’ as a whole. This does not pertain to any sequels, prequels or midquels (if applicable).
Let the games begin!

THE GOOD

  • I'm going to say this first: I'm not the biggest fan of the sci-fi genre as far as reading goes. So picking this up alone was my own personal challenge. But I went into this story completely open-minded, because, hey, sometimes I get surprised. And I'll say now, I'm not disappointed in the least with reading this one over.
  • Lars and Levi. I admit, these two were a little on the fence for me at first as characters, acting as the general frenemies of their field. They were close, yet they kept knives at each others' throats. But their relationship became rather dynamic to comprehend as I continued reading until it reached an end.
  • The experiments. I was rather intrigued by the concept of the Serum when I first learned of it. It seemed to act as a mixture of a fountain of youth concept mixed with the concept of the Apple of Eden (and yes, Adam and Evelyn/Eve gave me that idea way in advance) being used as a means of control and virtuosity. The further that the concept went with it, the more that I found myself drawn to what the Serum's purpose really lied in.

THE BAD

  • I think my biggest issue going into the story was probably the slew of formatting issues. Sometimes the passages were organized in strange ways, and would even change spacing limitations. But that could also just be the way that it is on my Kindle. So, pass/fail here, I'll leave that one in the air.
  • Some of the punctuation was a bit off. It wasn't completely distracting to the book, but it was still noticeable. 
  • I wasn't completely engrossed in the story until around chapter five when the concept of the Serum was truly introduced. After that, I found myself reading more thoroughly.
  • I feel like I need to read book one to understand more about Adam and Evelyn. Just because I see them appear a few times throughout the story, on their honeymoon while also being watched by witness protection. I just feel that for a standalone novel, there could be a bit of insight as to how they ended up this way without having to jump into book one.

THE MEH

  • Levi's actions towards wanting to off everyone that gets involved in his plight. They felt a little... lackluster to consider, but I can also understand the reasons why. He wants his actions kept under wraps, and that's just business.

THINGS I NEED TO KNOW/FINAL THOUGHTS

  • I think I'm all good here! There wasn't much that I really thought seemed out of place for my thoughts on the process.

OVERALL

I give this book a solid 4/5 stars! I was surprised that I grew to like a sci-fi story at all!


Would I read the sequel?

Prequel in this case, given it's the second book. 
I think I could see myself giving it a try.

BUY LINKS


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

[TRUTH SERUM] A Little Taste of Me

SHAKYRA DUNN

I don't often take the time to promote myself on this blog, but in honor of my first time participating in an online convention, B2BCycon, I thought now was a good time!

Here, you're going to learn a nice chunk of information about how I got my start, what my plans have been for my works, including this review site/blog, and you'll also learn about what's to come in the future.

I hope you enjoy the read!

A Taste of Me

There's a story for everyone to tell, so here's mine. I was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois exactly twenty-two years, nine months and around twenty days ago! I've been writing since I was a child, always crafting stories on my mother's desktop in addition to playing with a variety of dolls with my younger cousin. We never played house--we always made adventures with our dolls. Not only did those fuel my creativity, but in my path were video games that focused on story and characters. My first was Spyro the Dragon, and even now, I still feel like the original trilogy of that series is among my motivators for bringing me to this point.

So how did that get me to writing today?
Well, at the tender age of fourteen as a high school freshman, I happened to be cleaning out my closet and discovered a collection of old notebooks. Curiously, I opened the first page of a composition book and discovered a story that I wrote when I was six or seven, a tale of five kittens that won a vacation and were set to explore the lands together. Looking back on it, it was a rather silly story. But that ignited a spark in me: maybe now that I'm older and more skilled, I can try again. That single thought triggered the need to write. I wanted to become an author, a creator. I wanted to become better, and I wanted to inspire others to create something meaningful.

What happened next? I was eighteen years old when life took a drastic turn. I had just graduated from high school, I was happy with a new boyfriend, I was going to be moving to Texas for college, my mother was proud of me, and I felt like I was on top of the world. Then August 4th crept in, the day much like many others, and my mother stopped breathing after lying down due to a headache. She was pronounced dead the following day. In a flash, my life had changed. I stopped writing. I stopped focusing. I left my city as I planned, and I tried to continue as I always had. Then one cold October morning, I decided to go back to writing, and "The One Left Behind" began to take a form.

THE ONE LEFT BEHIND

Cover designed by TitPrince
Edited by Stephanie Ayers
Frayle searches through time for a way to save his best friend.

After witnessing Relek Paladere's murder, the rogue Frayle is thrust twenty years into the past and meets Nova Avery, a Time-Jumper. She wanders the thin lines of fragmented memories and sends Frayle through the windows of the Phantasm.

Together, they seek to save his friend, and unearth the mystery of the Guardians heading his world and the origin of one known only as the Creator.



"The One Left Behind" started off as a completely different story back in 2012. 
It was so jumbled that I can barely remember the details about it, but boy, was it a mess. There is something that stood out from the old progress that I know now though. I can remember how whiny and insignificant my main character Frayle was, and how much I wanted to shake the crazy out of him. But looking back on it, I think that the inspiration for him back then was my desire to retain what was left of my childhood. I wanted to whine. I wanted to scream. But those days were gone.

And I'm glad of it, because though Frayle is rather naive and can be kind of moody at times, he has grown so much over the course of the story. The first book alone from beginning to end acts as a reflection of his acceptance into a new person, all because time unfolded around him.

I sit back these days and wonder what would have been. I think of how much Frayle, Nova, Recca, even Relek, Curova and Freiya mean to me. All of these characters have cast a shadow over my heart and allowed me to develop motivation to continue moving forward. They are my pride.

The One Left Behind: Magic was my first jump into this crazy field of being an author. And there is little that I regret with crafting it.


EXCERPT:

The trek through the desert, Frayle found, was agonizingly long and silent. Everything spun about his mind; somehow, he was walking in the shadows of the past. He met with people he knew, and others that he had never met. He was being considered a Time-Jumper, the Creator… and he felt alone in this land that was familiar, but so intangible. He stared at Nova’s back as she walked ahead of him. She wasn’t even breaking a sweat, and her choice of clothing didn’t help. Was she used to walking everywhere? Why did she come to his rescue anyways?

There were so many questions, and not enough answers.

Frayle and Nova took refuge inside of a small shed just outside of the desert—an oasis, the man called it. It was sturdy enough to shield them from the dusty winds outside and allow them the time to get to know each other in this cramped shed. Who had the gall to build it in the middle of a desert anyways?

“So, you said you’re a Time-Jumper?” Frayle began, his back against the wall. “I’m still not sure what that is. The leader of the Church called me that…”

“It’s self-explanatory,” Nova began, leaning up against the opposite wall. Frayle glared at her, which she brushed off. “A Time-Jumper is one who is traveling through time… a ‘gift’ granted to certain people from the Guardian of Time to correct events. Those events are a single important moment in the life of the Time-Jumper.” Frayle listened intently to her words, resting his hands on his lap.

“They gain the opportunity to correct the distorted memory, but with several prices—once you use the power, you can’t hope to return to your own time for good, and you are stuck maneuvering through a bunch of different times for the rest of your life. You tend to forget, if you lack the will power, certain memories before that moment. There is also the possibility of re-writing events, like you saw.”

“You were watching what happened?”

“I’ve never met Guilian myself; I knew of him, in another time. Originally, he was a victim of a slaughtering at the Church by Savages that had come there for Relek on the night of his christening. Maximus was the catalyst in drawing them there. His lust for Guilian’s power was the bait. He died passing his powers on to you, saving your life.” Frayle’s lips parted at the proclamation, resting his hand on the pendant around his neck. “Your interference rushed his demise, because Maximus had a reason to eliminate Guilian, and Paladere was going to kill you. With both of you gone, he foolishly thought that the powers would be passed down to him automatically.”

“I can’t go back and try to resolve things? Relek’s alone in that place! He could die!”

“What’s done is done, Frayle,” Nova said simply.

He shook his head at her statement. “If you were in that time, why didn’t you do anything to try and save them?”

“Because that would ruin the balance of time. Like, right now.” She stood up. “Your actions have altered the fabric. Guilian is deceased, similar to the prime timeline. Your life is the same. Barron is now dead as well, before his time. Vicirus Paladere is alive. And there is no one to protect Relek.”

“I can’t fail again!” he cried out.

“If you were wiser, you would have suggested that Relek be taken away with Rilla. Perhaps things would have turned out differently.”

He ignored her statement. “The only reason I asked the Guardians to help was to make sure that Relek lived! If he dies, I’ll have never met him! What happens then?”

She thought of how to address his question before stating, “All of your actions up to this point would be in vain. You’d likely return to your old life.” He drummed his fingers along the floor. “You want to run to him, don’t you? Think about this, Frayle. Would you really want to risk your own life for the life of another? You, someone carrying the soul of the Creator?”

Frayle didn’t hesitate to respond, “Of course I would, for him. He’s my best friend. Are you telling me that you wouldn’t if you were close to someone?” Nova blankly stared at him, her mouth daring to open and retort to his comment, but she remained silent. “Okay, if you wouldn’t, then why are you out here? You had someone you wanted to save, so you turned back time. Right?”

“There’s no reason for me to tell you my business.”

He resisted the urge to slam his fist against the floor. This girl was a hassle. “Oh, because you knowing my business is such an improvement? The least that I deserve are answers.”

“I saved your life!” she hissed, pointing a finger at him, taking him by surprise. “You would have been beheaded and died on the cross if I hadn’t kept my eyes on you! Or is that not enough for you?”

“You don’t have to be brutal about it!” Frayle exclaimed, now up on his feet as well, towering over the girl. “I am grateful for what you did, and I’m happy that I’m alive, but if being alive means going back to a life where I’ll have nothing to live for, then I’d rather not have that life. Do you get that?”

“Do you love him?”

He found himself scratching his head. “…What?”

“Do you love him?” she repeated, “Are you and this Relek guy lovers?”

His eyes went buck-wild at the statement. “Oh gosh, what?!” He frantically waved his hands. “No! A thousand times no! W-Where did that even come from?!”

“You seem like you’re practically joined at the knee with him, and not having him there is like tearing a part of you away. Kind of weird.” She crossed her arms in a huff before looking away, once again taking her place on the floor, staring at the wall. “Forget I said anything. We’ve… got a long journey ahead of us.”

He calmed himself before sitting down, never once averting his gaze from her. “Journey?”

“Well… you want to go after Relek. And the best time to do that is tonight, when security in the Church is down. It’s only a matter of time before Vicirus figures out where he’s being hidden. But after Relek is safe… we have to leave this time.”

“T-This time? Why do we have to leave?”

“The Guardians will come after you… Now that you’ve become aware of yourself and the Guardian of Time knows who you are… they will kill you. I’d rather not have your blood on my hands because I didn’t warn you of what was coming…”

His eyes narrowed in contempt. So that was all that she had in mind? Keeping him alive just because she wanted to keep his blood out of her hands? Could that really be it? Because if it had, to him, it made no sense. He wasn’t a defining factor in her life.

“…You call me the Creator. And you saved my life without many reasons behind it, at least that’s what I’m picking up from you. Does that mean that you don’t believe in the Guardians?”

Her eyelids were heavy. She leaned against the wall, finding the hard wood floor almost comforting. “I’ll leave it to you to decide.” Oh, so she’s vague, he concluded.

“Just one more question. Then I’ll let you sleep.”

“I’m not tired,” she retorted before pulling the pink ponytail holder out, letting her hair fall down to her shoulders. And stubborn? What a dangerous combination.

“If we’re going to be working on the same side, even if it’s just to try and get Relek back and part ways… do you think we could at least try and get along?”

She raised an eyebrow. “So, you want to be friends or something along those lines? You’re… interesting with shaping your words, to say the least.” He lightly grinned; that made her slightly uncomfortable. “Sure. Whatever you want. As long as you stop with that weird look.”

He raised an eyebrow, his expression remaining. “This is a weird look? Well, sorry, but this is my face when I’m in a better mood, so you’d better get used to it.”

“Never,” she said simply.

THE FINAL LESSON

Cover by Megan Weaver
Apprentice Arcana Leilana Erovina has the chance to rise to power when she is granted a final test to gain the title of Warlord that she has craved for the last five years. She is assigned to travel about the land of Adrylis and learn one spell from every magical being.

However, there's a catch--she is not to learn from the ancestors of wizardry before her. Instead, she is assigned to learn something more from the souls that she encounters in the world of Adrylis: humbleness, passion, understanding, laughter, friendship and love.

Adrylis is in crisis, war at the doorstep of the kingdom of Linmus. Prince Remiel Vesarus is forced into hiding, racked with vengeance towards the terrorists that have destroyed all that he has ever known. With his loyal attendant Solus Brenner at his side, together they seek to restore their kingdom to its former glory and end the conflict of previous generations.

When fate pulls them down similar paths, they will discover that the magic budding in their crumbling world certainly comes with a price.

"Time to embark on your final lesson."

My second novel is going to be another jump in the fantasy field, but based on what I have written for it, it is already a huge step up from how "The One Left Behind: Magic" turned out. My dialogue and scenery has become so clear with the direction for this novel since I've begun.

A little background information: "The Final Lesson" is a separate novel in its own league of a series called "Final Meaning to Life," a collection of novels that are bound together by the common theme of morality and growth. It was first created during November 2016 as a project for my first NaNoWriMo, and came into fruition just a month before when I was at work. 

After winning NaNoWriMo, I was fervent in my decision to finish the novel, and today it sits at over 150k words, about 65% complete now. 

The book is due for a summer release, and you can follow its progress here in my Facebook group "Basking in the Final Lesson!" There, you'll be able to find pictures, excerpts from the novel, teasers, and you'll even get the chance to hear more about my upcoming other projects!

EXCERPT:

Heavy footsteps followed by a fierce roar shattered the silence between them. Leilana and Amiria cowered at the faint sight of the source, even grasped one another’s hands to ease the tension building around them, though neither of them were willing to admit it. Amiria swallowed, and Leilana stroked the girl’s index finger with her thumb to coax her out of her stupor. Now they understood why everyone ran away before the shade hit. Leilana channeled her magic, the Lasette lifting into the air. Amiria put the flute up to her lips, a shrill note ringing from the instrument out of fear alone. The noise was enough to rouse the beast further, its sharp fangs bulging forward as it snarled and stepped further into view.

The street lights did little to mask the ethereal creature. When it emerged, it was standing upright on its hind legs, carrying a spiked club in its left hand. The horns atop its head stretched down towards the middle of its back, black fur coating its broad shoulders and legs. Leilana bit down on her bottom lip as she allowed herself to rush through the pages of the Lasette before suddenly stopping on a page, her mind reading over the words hovering in her sight. Many times, she had jumped through these pages, studied the lore of the mystical creatures lurking through the world of Adrylis. But never had she imagined that she could encounter a Dirionus type.

“W-What are we supposed to do…?” Amiria whispered to Leilana, taking a step towards her.

Leilana was emanating an aura that would allow the Lasette to unleash the power budding within her. “Fight. Otherwise we’ll be obliterated, and this city is going to keep being threatened.”

Dirionus. They were beings of high stature and spiritual power said to harness powers recognizable by the Warlords themselves, practically acting as familiars. But they were supposed to be peaceful and act as martyrs to the lands that they are assigned to protect in place of their masters. If that were the case, why was this one cloaked in shadow?

“Certainly we can’t take it down all by ourselves,” Amiria retorted, her tone hesitant, “We aren’t experienced enough! We’re still new to this phase of the Arcana life!”

“We have to do this because we’re Arcana!” Leilana hissed, “This is the fate that we have been given! We are born to protect others! Who are we to abandon it?” She turned to the Dirionus-bred creature again and thrust out a hand, a gust of wind propelling forward. The Dirionus thrust the club into the ground and gripped to the handle, keeping itself secure in its place. “Even if you don’t believe in the Warlords… anyone with a heart would understand what these people go through! They run and hide because of this monster terrorizing them! Who are we to turn our backs to them?”

Amiria’s eyes were darting between Leilana and the Dirionus. With a sigh, she stood at the girl’s side and began to play a tune on the flute, a veil of protection casting over Leilana. Leilana followed the wind strike with several bursts of electricity raining from the sky, which seemed to do little damage towards their opponent. It seemed to almost absorb the power, its club nulling the effects. Maybe it had channeled its energy long ago. Leilana switched to ice, but the Dirionus timed her movements, dodging the attack. Once Leilana’s spell had worn out, it propelled forward, thrusting its club into the ground, kicking up some of the pavement, throwing Leilana off balance and knocking Amiria out of the line of fire altogether. The Dirionus hovered over Leilana, club grasped in both hands.

Leilana let out a sharp gasp before planting her feet on the wrecked pavement, jumping out of the way of the strike, the wind from the weapon rushing past her ears. She had barely heard the club slam into the ground, cratering the path. Amiria seized the opportunity to try and stun the beast, inhaling deeply before unleashing a far cry of a sonic wave from the bottom of her throat. The Dirionus roared in retaliation, covering its ears, dropping the spiked club in the process. Leilana held up a hand, the Lasette thrusting the ephemeral limbs from within its pages, grabbing the weapon from the ground. She mimicked the stance that the beast had taken before swinging it, the hands effectively hitting the Dirionus, knocking it into one of the nearby buildings.

Amiria stumbled forward, her vision hazing, but she shook her head to clear any signs of vulnerability and stood her ground as the Dirionus regained itself. It locked its gaze on Leilana, who seemed to be recharging her power into the Lasette. It sped towards her, cutting through the spectral hands she had conjured. Amiria belted out another sonic wave, channeling more force into the action, the pavement beginning to thrust upward, knocking the Dirionus off its feet. Leilana flexed her fingers and sent a whirlwind of flames spiraling towards the beast. The combined tactic opened a crater under the beast, and it fell.

Amiria and Leilana approached the crater and peered down before looking at one another, Amiria sheepishly grinning while Leilana retained a confident expression. Their hopes were dashed when a snarl beset their ears and the Dirionus leapt from the crater, striking them simultaneously with the club and knocking them across the battlefield. The Lasette hit the ground with a thud, and the flute clanked against one of the buildings, remaining intact. Amiria gaped at the blood covering her chest, emerging from her ripped dress; she could barely lift her head, already winded from the excess magic usage. She clenched her fist and slammed it against the concrete. Leilana pressed her hands to the ground and pushed herself to a sit, the side of her face caked in the sticky substance. She scoffed, trying to wipe some away to clear her right eye.

The Dirionus drifted over the two, holding up the club above them, prepared to strike them down swiftly and as painlessly as possible. Leilana swallowed, never taking her gaze from the beast, a certain quality opening her mind further. Now that she could look it in the face, she saw that its eyes were full of remorse, even if its actions spoke otherwise. Dirionus weren’t meant to be malicious, only helpful. And that resided deep within. Which meant that this wasn’t its doing, not fully.

“Stop…” she whispered with as much energy as she could manage, though she knew that the words were futile for it to comprehend. “You… can still make a change…”

Amiria shot to a sit, panting as she looked over at the girl, unsure of what her plans were. Was she trying to talk it down? It was too far gone already. Why put in the extra effort?

The Dirionus thrust down its club.

Leilana had closed herself off and forced herself not to look up at the beast when she listened to the wind move at the swift motion. She felt a tug, but no impact came. She slowly opened her eyes, looking to her left and saw Solus holding Amiria in his arms, both looking just past her. Leilana followed their line of sight, appalled by what she saw next.

 

A Bit of a Confession

Solus Brenner and Leilana Erovina
TitPrince
I'll be honest.

My first novel made its debut back in June of last year, and though I have no regrets with how I shaped it, there were still so many mishaps behind it that are still being reflected today. 

I watch it crumble at my feet because I was a reckless, broke young adult that couldn't afford an editor, and that mistake cost me dearly because my reviews tanked fast due to my second-guessing and my self-edits. I am a four-star author, and I have a long way to go with this series. But it isn't going to be my only series.

Seeing my reviews on "The One Left Behind: Magic" left me extremely hesitant with wanting to participate in B2BCycon. There are so many incredible authors participating, and I'm still so new and unestablished. My review streak doesn't help that at all. 


A Bit of a Confession

Frayle Mathur
TitPrince
Frayle's story is still developing--HE is still developing, just as I am. 

He's got a long way to go, not only as a Creator meant to balance out the world of Nimestria, but as a young man still finding his place. And I still see myself in him on these aspects.

Looking at things now... I don't feel like I have to be afraid to keep taking some chances and make mistakes in this field. Because everything that I have done up to now has been a journey no different from the ones that my characters take. Slow, purposeful steps are meant to carry you forward. I have a solid following now that I've made a dent in my budding career. 

I feel every day that this is something that I am meant to do. I am meant to be a writer. I've always believed that. I have meaning now, and I want to use my skills to the best of my ability. I've grown so much since that first book, and I hope that future projects will allow me to showcase my skills.

Here's to all the best!

WHERE TO FIND ME

Obviously, Burning Out The Masses here is my blog, but this is a good place to keep up with my reviews and thought process. I keep on my toes these days. Here, you can find reviews, promotions of other authors, and I may even start expanding mine into actual blog posts again!

Those aside, I can also be found at a variety of social media sites: