Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Book Signing-Two Important Mistakes You Don’t Want To Make.

I did a book signing last summer for my first book, Beyond the Eyes, and I did another one two weeks ago for Dark Spirits. Here are two dumbass mistakes I made and want to share with you so you don’t make them . . .

1.) When a customer wants you to sign your book they just purchased from you, ask if they want it personalized. If they do, which I’m sure they will, ask to whom. If you’re not sure how to spell the person’s name you’re personalizing it to, ask how to spell it. The reason being, some people spell their name differently. For example: My name is commonly spelled Rebecca. However, I don’t spell it that way.

When I was doing a book signing for Beyond the Eyes, I didn’t ask if the reader wanted me to personalize my book. Instead, I just signed my name. The reason why is because beforehand, I didn’t really think about it. You see, years ago I went to Anne Rice’s book signing event. When it was my turn for her to sign the book, she only signed her name, therefore, I thought that’s how it was done.

Wrong!

Afterwards, when I realized my mistake, I felt like shit.

I still do.

A lot of people came to buy Beyond the Eyes, and I totally let them down.
L It wasn’t a proud moment for me. So, lesson learned, right?

2.) Always pick a date when another event isn’t going on. Choose the date of your book signing wisely.

When I scheduled my book signing for Dark Spirits, I had no idea it was graduation weekend.

Why would I?

I don’t have kids.

But still, I should have done my research.

Also, Kevin told me half of our town went to a wedding that day. Of course, I wouldn’t have known that ahead of time. But then again, maybe I would have if I’d done my homework. Needless to say, the book signing was a bust. The only thing that lifted my spirits was reminding myself that the day before, the owner of the bookstore called my work to tell me I needed to bring more books. She only had two left which meant both of my books were almost sold out. So people are buying them, and I’m still getting stopped in public by people who have read my books, telling me how much they like them. Sometimes I’ll get asked about my characters, which is fun.

Anyway, if you’re an author or a future author, please don’t make those two crucial mistakes. If you avoid those two things, you’re going to rock your book signing event.
J

Here are a couple pictures of my event. I know I’m not in them. I hate getting my picture taken. That is something I’ll have to overcome, especially when I get more into the media.








Have a good rest of the week.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Passionate About Books-Book Of The Week







Hey! So The White Aura is book of the week on Passionate about books (go like them, awesome page!) and Felicia's lowered the price to $1.99 for the week! : ) Also, there will be some giveaways on the page! Be sure and check it out all week.

Sorry about the format. Felicia sent it to me, so I can post it here, and it's kinda goofy. I tried fixing it, but you know me . . . sooooo not a techie. LOL But, hey, at least you can still read it. The story is great, so check it out while it's on sale.

Get it here: Amazon Barnes and Noble


How do you live with the gut clenching truth that the one you love will die if you meet them?

Twenty year old sorcerer Scott Tabors is learning how. After seeing seventeen year old Olivia Whitehead outside of a coffee shop, his heart will never be the same. He longs for her, he wants her, and he knows she will be his. They are heart mates.
…but due to a curse on his family, he can’t meet her. Not yet. So for now, he visits her in her dreams. Her dreams where he can tell her everything but his name.


Olivia Whitehead is a typical junior in high school. She and her best friend are having the time of their lives, but she can’t help but notice the changes happening to her. Especially the changes in her heart after she begins dreaming about a mysterious dark haired young man. But what will happen when the school heartthrob decides he wants Olivia? Will she realize the dream man is real or will she move on?


#1-Olivia’s POV




 I’m outside. The moon is high and glowing, there are trees all around. This is a new location. I look

around for Mr. Sexy, but I can’t see him anywhere, it’s too dark. Looking around, I realize this place is

familiar.

Wait…I’m in the field I was day dreaming about earlier. The soft green grass is like silk between my


toes. There are yellow daisies everywhere. Trees line the perimeter, it’s almost like I’m in a box. I’m

wearing my shorts and cami, but I’m not cold. The wind is blowing just enough to ruffle my hair.

“Hello?” I call timidly.

Nothing.

It’s completely silent out, not even birds are chirping.

I glance around and walk forward. My arms are wrapped around the front of me, not for warmth,

but for comfort. I know I’m dreaming, but this is still kind of weird.

I see a deer to my left, just watching me. She’s beautiful and majestic. She starts to come towards

me the moment I wish I could pet her. My hand slowly reaches out and touches her course coat.

Huge brown eyes look into mine, there’s no fear.

“You’re beautiful,” I whisper.

“So are you,” a deep voice says from behind me.

I turn violently, scaring the deer off into the trees. Mr. Sexy is standing five feet in front of me. Jeans

and a fitted white t-shirt clothe his fit body.

“You’re here.”

“Of course I am, where else would I be?”

“I thought…well I wasn’t sure if this was our dream or just mine.”

“It’s ours Livvie,

it’s ours. Always ours.”





#2-Olivia’s POV


Aiden followed closely behind me. We sat and our hands brushed as we both reached for the same

arm rest. I giggled with embarrassment and moved the opposite rest instead. I breathed deeply,

trying to relax myself before the theater went dark. I moved my eyes slightly, trying to get a

sideways glance at Aiden. His chiseled face looked as stormy and dangerous from his profile as his

eyes did from the front.  As I studied him, he seemed to sense me and turned slowly. His eyes

seemed to swallow my soul and I felt my hand moving toward his. Just as I was inches from gripping

his fingers, J cleared her throat behind me.

My mind seemed to clear, like the fog lifting from the ground. I turned slowly, almost feeling

like my mind and body were not my own anymore. I looked at J, my eyes looking deep into hers but


my mind still felt disconnected. I felt like I was screaming inside, like I was trapped in my own body.

“Liv?”

The voice coming from mouth didn’t seem like my own. It sounded distant and disconnected.

“Yeah?”

She reached out grabbed my arm, gripping me tightly and shaking me slightly.

“Liv, what’s wrong?”

I glanced back at Aiden, still looking like a wild storm brewing, and I shrugged my shoulders in

confusion.





#3-Scott’s POV


My reflection was much calmer than my inside. I was an absolute wreck inside, worried and scared


about the events that would happen tonight at the dance. Wearing black dress pants and a white

buttoned shirt, I looked dressed up enough to blend in if I had to go in the building for any reason.

My pockets were loaded with stunning charms that would stun the attacker if I threw them at him. I

had a knife in my back pocket, big enough to do damage if needed. I didn’t want this fight to

become that violent, but I was prepared to protect Livvie if I had to.

Mark had similar charms and weapons to guard himself with. I had given them to him after he had

left school. Grandma and Sadie were prepared with spells they had memorized. Immobilizing spells,

memory erasing spells (for the dance goers), slumber charms, and they had found a few control

spells that would be handy if we needed the crowd to leave without putting up a fight. Overall, I felt

that we were well prepared. I couldn’t help the sinking feeling in the pit of stomach, a feeling that

told me The Crimson Calamitous was much stronger and this may all be for nothing.




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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Throw Back Pictures of Haunted Basement

I had written a blog post a while ago about the basement in the haunted house we lived in many, many, many, years ago. I thought I would share with you some actual pictures of it.



The little girl going up the steps is yours truly. The girl on the couch is my sister, Angel. My parents held their paranormal investigation meetings in this basement. My dad is the one on the phone, probably getting information on a possible lead.

This room looks normal, right?

It’s not.

Trust me.

Covers levitating above your body . . . um, not normal.
   
Anyway, I hope you enjoy your Memorial Day weekend. Be safe and have fun.

Monday, May 20, 2013

What’s Your Favorite Book?


When somebody asks me what my favorite book is, more than a few automatically pop in my head: 1984 by George Orwell, The Stand by Stephen King, Interview With the Vampire by Anne Rice, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, and Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater. I love them all and have read them more than once and will probably read them again in the future.

I grew up reading Anne Rice’s vampire chronicles, and if you haven’t read Interview With the Vampire and love those types of stories, I suggest you go on Amazon and buy it pronto. She is the Godmother of Vampire stories.


Interview With the Vampire is about Louis who became a vampire in 1791 at the age of 25. He was living in Louisiana. He had a plantation on the Mississippi, near New Orleans. After his brother died, Louis drank all the time and lived like a man who wanted to die but didn’t have the courage to do it himself. In his heart, he truly wished to be murdered. He tempted fate several times by walking the black streets and alleys alone and passing out in cabarets. One night he was attacked, just a few steps from his door. Not by a disgruntled sailor or thief, but by a vampire.

The vampire Lestat.

Both Lewis and Lestat are great characters.

If you haven’t read this book . . . trust me, they are.

Lestat is arrogant, impetuous, a nonconformist, self-involved, yet in his heart he’s lonely and seeks answers to his deepest desires. He gave Louis the “dark gift” as he calls it, because not only did he want Louis' wealth but his companionship as well.

This tale is a very dark and romantic one in a sense that it romances vampirism. Anne Rice did a fabulous job with this story, so much so, it makes you wonder if it’s real.

I can go on and on about it, however, I don’t intend to make this post a book review on it. But like I said, it’s a damn good book and so is The Vampire Lestat and The Queen of The Damned–the other two following this one.

Anyway, back in the 1990s a movie of Interview With the Vampire was made. Brad Pitt played Louis, which I thought he did a wonderful job at. But when I heard Tom Cruise was playing Lestat, I was not happy.


Tom Cruise looks nothing like Lestat.

You know who looks like Lestat?

Billy Idol.

This is what Lestat looks like:



I have to admit, though, Tom Cruise did a wonderful job playing the part. To be honest, I’m not a fan of his work, but I think this was his best role ever.

Just so you can get a taste of what I’m talking about, here are clips from the movie. It captures the darkness of the story perfectly. Oh, and in the book, Lestat turns a six-year-old orphan into a vampire, which wasn’t a good thing to do. You’ll have to read the book to discover why he did such a selfish thing.





I have to say, since I grew up reading this book and the rest of Anne Rice's vampire chronicles, and I write in this genre, this is my favorite story.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Book Review on the Vessel by Felicia Tatum

The Vessel is the second book in Felicia Tatum’s YA urban fantasy. It takes off where The White Aura had ended. 
Olivia Whitehead is the main character in this tale. She’s kidnapped and held captive for two months. To her surprise, Aiden (the guy who tried to kill her in the first book) is thrown in the room with her. She soon discovers his eyes are a different color, and he has no recollection of the past two years of his life. To her horror, Olivia realizes Aiden’s body was just a vessel being used by the evil sorcerer. It wasn’t Aiden himself who tried to end her life; it was that damn sorcerer instead. She feels horrible for almost killing Aiden, and let me tell ya . . . the guy’s wounds  she had inflicted on him has him in bad shape.
In The Vessel, Felicia did something I really appreciated: she wrote chapters with just Aiden’s POV. I enjoyed reading those chapters, and I have to admit, I like his character better than Scott’s (Olivia’s love interest). I was secretly hoping Olivia and Aiden would hook up, or Aiden and Sadie (Scott’s sister).
Both Sadie and Aiden are my favorite characters.
Olivia and Aiden manage to escape after Olivia discovers another magical ability she has and is able to leave Scott a message on her whereabouts. But her troubles are far from over.
I don’t want to give any spoilers away, so I’ll leave it at that.
We get to meet Olivia’s estrange brother, Kyle in this book.  Their parents have been kidnapped, and he wants to know what happened to them.  Olivia tells him, and then in turn, he tells her shocking information about herself and their parents.  
Kyle’s character is standoffish. I’m hoping we get to know him better in the next book because right now I’m not too sure how I feel about him.
Olivia’s best friend Juniper plays a larger role in this second book.
I like her.
She has spunk and is a great friend to Olivia.
Scott has two emotions running on high octane this time around: frustration and jealousy. He’s frustrated because he feels powerless to help Olivia and fears death will take her from him, which I can understand. His jealousy, though, of Aiden, is making me dislike him even more. Olivia is getting annoyed by it too, which is great because maybe she’ll ditch him for Aiden. 
Hint, hint, Felicia.
I think this whole story Felicia is weaving together is coming together nicely and it’s imaginative. I’m looking forward to the third book, especially since she ended The Vessel the way she did.  Now, I’m on the edge of my seat, wanting to know what’s going to happen next. So, yeah, I’ll be grabbing the next book when it comes out. That’s for sure. J 




Friday, May 10, 2013

Research Before Writing Your Story Or After?


I wonder how many authors do research for their story before they write it. In the past, I’ve taken several writing courses and was taught to do your research as you’re writing it, so that’s how I do it. To me it makes sense because what if you spend all your time researching before you started your story and then discover as it unfolds, you didn’t need the information after all? You totally wasted all that time, right? But I guess it’s a matter of perspective. I mean, if later on in the future you’d need that information then I suppose it was worth it.

I don’t know.

Each writer is different on how they do things, but it works better for me to research as I write my story.

This week I had to do some research on Africa because my characters were going there. I knew very little about this continent and learned quite a bit looking stuff up on it. Now my characters are there, so I’ll be doing further research to make their journey more accurate. The only thing I don’t like about doing it this way is it slows me down. I much rather write. However, I do find this process beneficial in the long run and it’s worth it.

So what will I be doing this weekend?

I’ll be doing a little bit of this and a little bit of that, but in between those things, I’ll be joining the gang in Africa. :)

Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Book Review–The Host by Stephenie Meyer


Warning: This review will have spoilers in it.

I’ve been wanting to read this book for a while now, and I’m glad I did. Stephenie’s writing was far better in The Host than in her Twilight books. I think she did a fine job and the story was great. Now, for the review . . .

Aliens take over our world because humans are brutish and destructive. In their truest form, the aliens look like a silver centipede. What they do is, they have a Seeker kidnap a human and have a Healer implant one of their own, which is called a “soul” into the human. The alien . . . er, soul, attaches itself inside the human brain. The soul than takes full control of the human, and most of the time the human’s spirit fades away–gets erased.

There are humans who manage to evade the Seekers, living in the shadows as bandits, going on raids to obtain a supply of food and all the necessities required to sustain their life. Melanie and her beloved younger brother Jamie are one of those people. For a while they’re on their own, until she runs into Jared. Jared is another human in hiding. When he realizes Melanie is the same as he–human, he’s beside himself with joy.

At first, Jared annoyed me. His bright, cheery, bubbly personality didn’t sit well with me. He reminded me of those overly happy, chatty, chicks, who is constantly bouncing in her seat where you just want to slap her.

Yeah, an-noying!

Jared, Melanie, and Jamie form their own little group. Of course, Melanie and Jared fall in love. Melanie’s character, though, is strong-willed, street smart, and a fighter.

I like her character.

One night when Melanie goes on a solo raid, a Seeker catches her. Melanie has the misfortune of being implanted with a soul called, “Wanderer.”

Wanderer is a great character.

Once she gets adjusted to this new life form, or tries to (she quickly discovers humans are one of the most complex species she’s ever encountered because of our emotions, our senses, and vivid memories), she realizes Melanie is still alive inside her and refuses to relinquish full possession of her mind. In fact, Melanie talks to her and bombards Wanderer with memories of Jared and Jamie. So much so, Wanderer finds herself in love with Jared and having maternal feelings for Jamie.

There’s a Seeker who keeps a constant eye on Wanderer. This Seeker wants Wanderer to extract information from Melanie’s memories on where the groups of bandits are hiding, including Jared and Jamie.

This Seeker is a pain-in-the-ass.

She’s rotten.

Both Wanderer and Melanie can’t stand her.

Wanderer manages to evade this Seeker when Melanie talks her into searching for uncle Jeb who once was considered an end-of-the-world alarmist before the extraterrestrial invasion. Melanie figures Jared and Jamie is with him, hiding out somewhere in the desert where Jeb has a secret bunker.

Wanderer manages to find Jeb in the scorching hot desert.

Jeb is the leader of his group and a great character.

I really like him.

Against everybody’s objection, Jeb takes Wanderer to their hidden compound. Nobody trusts her and wants Jeb to kill her. When Jared enters the cubby hole Wanderer is being confined in, Wanderer and Melanie are filled with joy–until they notice how cold and stone-faced he is. He becomes a total ass towards Wanderer because in his mind, she took Melanie away from him. Nobody knows at this point that Melanie is still alive and communicating with Wanderer.

Jared strikes her a few times, which makes me dislike him even more. But when Jamie discovers what’s going on, he becomes friends with Wanderer, and he’s the first person she opens up to.

When Wanderer first arrives, Ian and his brother Kyle wants her dead. However, eventually Ian sees Wanderer for whom she really is and winds up protecting her from Kyle and the others.

Ian is another favorite character of mine, and I kept secretly hoping he and Wanderer would fall in love.

In time, the group finds out about Melanie, and they start to refer Wanderer as Wanda. They fold Wanda into their family (well, most of them do), and Wanda finds herself loving them. She begins to realize and understand why humans are the way they are. But she’s keeping a secret from them and is willing to die in order to protect it. At least, for a while she is, until she’s in a sticky situation and realizes her secret can change lives and bring hope back to the human race.

This book is really good. If you haven’t read it you should. Just one thing, though, there are parts that drag on, but that’s my only gripe about this book. This story is well written, imaginative, and has great characterization.