Monday, October 27, 2014

Halloween Haunted Open House and Giveaway Blog Hop!!

It’s that time of year again, when thoughts turn to full moons, scary things that go bump in the night, candy corn, Trick-or-Treat and Haunted Houses! I’ve got all those things under one roof at my 4th Annual Haunted Open House and Giveaway Blog Hop!

The doors are open from October 27 through October 31 for ghoulish fun! I’ve got a ghostly host of special guests including NY Times bestseller, Darynda Jones, tarot expert Arwen Lynch and ImaJinn Books editor Brenda Chin along with out of this world giveaways! And if that wasn’t enough to entice you to my creaky door, there are rooms filled with thrills, chills and appetizing yummies (Not mummies! Well, there might be mummies . . .) waiting. Booklovers, film buffs, horror addicts, TV junkies, fright fiends - there’s something for everyone! Expect a haunting good time.

Part of the HOH is an a-maze-ing Giveaway Blog Hop! Go door-to-door for chances to win prizes at each front porch, starting here, with mine!

To celebrate the Haunting season as well as the just released new installment in my “By Moonlight” dark paranormal shape-shifter series, REMEMBERED BY MOONLIGHT (for more on RbM, visit my HOH Library!), I’m giving away a howlingly wolfish necklace (adjustable length) and a treat bag of “By Moonlight” SWAG!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My neighbors have their lights on so you can find your way to their porches. Follow along the path. You can’t miss them!!

Don’t forget to drop in at my Haunted Open House and if you’re in the neighborhood, stop by at my Nancy Gideon “By Moonlight” Goodreads Group on October 28 from 8-10 pm EST. We’ll be talking REMEMBERED BY MOONLIGHT spoilers!

Happy Haunting!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

20 Questions: Meet Christine Allen-Riley

Getting to Know Your Favorite (or soon to be Favorite!) Writer

When I look back at times spent with author Christine Allen-Riley, I see moments of fun and frenzy. Always on the move, always in full blown chaotic humor (even when fighting with the turn-style in a New York subway where we were trying to catch a ride for the sake of research. Who said New Yorkers weren’t friendly?). When I saw her post that her first young adult paranormal was coming out, I’ll admit it, I fangirled in anticipation of that same rollicking energy spilling onto the pages that I remembered from the snippets of her work she used to read during open critique. I love an engaging story. In fact, I’m writing this post early because EVENTIDE comes out the day before it goes live, and I’ll be too consumed with fantasy to dutifully tend to social media at that point.

To give you a glimpse of the author in the wild and crazy, she’s answered my 20 Questions. Enjoy them then buy EVENTIDE! You won’t regret it.

Getting to know you:

Party dress or blue jeans? Neither – bare feet and long hippie skirts.

Spa day or gym workout? Spa day…I could use a foot and head massage right about now. Oooh, and a hot stone massage, too. 

Broadway or museum? Broadway, baby! I love live theatre – particularly musicals.

Five words you use to describe yourself? Distractible, Quirky, Creative, Nerdy, Late

Other creative outlets? All of them. Okay, not really, but sometimes, it seems like it. I love sewing, knitting, cross stitching, pottery (both the wheel and hand building) watercolor painting, making greeting cards, and other assorted geek crafting like making Weeping Angels and cosplay items. My friends and cousins and I even have Pinterest Parties once a month where we make some of the stuff we’ve pinned on Pinterest.

What music are you listening to? (While you write?) While I’m writing, I really prefer instrumentals (unless I have a specific playlist for a specific book) so there’s a lot of Circa Paleo and Clocks and Clouds. When I’m not writing and I want to get my sing-a-long on, I listen to Walk Off the Earth, Mumford and Sons, Rusted Root, Counting Crows, Damien Rice and a ton of others.

What’s on your Bucket List? Going to Wales, England, Scotland and Ireland. Seeing the Pacific Northwest. Going to Burning Man. Completing my concert bucket list (I love live music, and there are a ton of performers I’d like to see, yet.), have my aunt teach me to make silver jewelry.

Gourmet cook or take out? I can cook…but I don’t enjoy it. But we don’t do a lot of take out because it can be pricey and often unhealthy.

Something quirky about you that no one knows (we won’t tell anyone!) I only recently started wearing nail polish again. I stopped during my senior year in college because I was working on a cadaver that had on the same color I did and it weirded me out. But my niece insisted on painting my nails last summer, and now I’m addicted to nail polish.

The Written word:

Favorite genre to read? (Is it what you write?) Young Adult. I really love the genre, and I’m branching into writing it from my previous genre of steamy romance under a pen name.

What are you reading right now? Right now, I’m reading Sinner by Maggie Stiefvater, The Bride by Abigail Barnette aka Jenny Trout, Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig and re-reading Crossing to Avalon by Jean Shinoda Bolen. 

Paperback or e-book? E-book all the way. I always have several books on the go – a couple fiction, some non-fiction, research, etc. and e-books make my life so much easier because everything is right in my purse on my iPad. I still love holding physical books and having them on my shelf, but as far as reading goes, bring on the e-books! 

Favorite books you can read over and over? I don’t do a ton of re-reading, but I’d go with The Wild Wood by Charles deLint, The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Prachett.

A Writer’s Life:

OCD plotter or free range pantser? I’m as free range as they come. I have elaborate fantasies about being a plotter with an actual outline, but I don’t think it’ll ever happen. 

Live to write or write to live? Day job? My day job is freelance editing which dovetails nicely with writing.

Do you have a set writing schedule? Nothing in my life is really on a schedule (despite many valiant efforts) but I do try to get it out of the way in the morning after my kids go to school. That way, there are fewer distractions, but that doesn’t always work, so I try to squeeze it in wherever I can.

Solo muse or critique partner(s)? I have some amazing critique partners that I wouldn’t trade for the world. We exchange chapters via email, and we will occasionally brainstorm together, too.

Biggest hurdle to getting words on the page and how you overcome it? Mostly, it’s all about time. My house is what could be described as controlled chaos. Even though there are only four of us, we’ve all got a lot going on, so I’ve had to learn to tune out distractions and also write whenever I can squeeze it in – even if it’s only 20 minutes or so.

What’s on your desk? A cat or three, rocks, books, candles, a couple small sculptures, more rocks, my laptop and either hot or iced tea.

When can we get your next book and what’s it all about? You can get my book right now. This very minute, in fact. 

It’s a paranormal YA about homicidal, soul-sucking faeries set in the wilds of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, called Eventide (Iron Falls, Book One)

About the Book

The driver in a tragic car accident that killed her best friend, Devon Greer is consumed by guilt. When powerful hallucinations convince her that she’s seeing Rachael everywhere, Devon thinks she’s going crazy. But her friend isn’t truly gone.

To save Rachael from the faeries who stole her, Devon must pit herself against the Court of the Sidhe. Once she witnesses the true form of the fey, Devon’s life is in danger—and so are the lives of everyone she loves.

Now, Devon must not only protect herself, but also Jonah Seafort, Rachael’s cousin and the only person Devon can trust to help her. While the Sidhe walk among them, no one is safe.

“That Abbott woman’s crazy as a bag of squirrels,” my dad muttered, shaking his head as I tightened my grip on the steering wheel and maneuvered around the older woman screaming obscenities into the forest on the edge of town.

I hadn’t driven since the accident, and I didn’t want to be driving now, but my dad had insisted that the longer I avoided it, the harder it would be later. So here I was, chauffeuring him around town and trying not to run over the resident whack-job. 

As I approached one of the only three stoplights in the bustling metropolis of Iron Falls, my dad said, “Turn right. I want you to take Twenty-Eight home.”

I glanced at him as I braked, grateful that I had a red light’s worth of time to try to convince him that I wasn’t ready for that stretch of road. 

Before I could even speak, he said, “Devon, I know you’re scared, but you need to do this.”

No, what I really needed was to go home and just pretend that the last few months had been a dream. But the light changed, and the honking horn behind me prodded me into motion. Almost on autopilot, I turned right, onto Highway Twenty-Eight. Calling it a highway seemed far too generous. It was a two-lane road through nothing but trees and the occasional mailbox that belonged to a house hidden from sight by the endless forest.

My hands slick on the wheel, I took the curves far slower than I ever would have four months ago. The truck behind me rode my bumper, making me even more nervous as I approached the accident site. I tapped my brakes, hoping whoever it was would back off. Instead, the truck whipped around me, passing with its horn blaring. I was pretty sure it was one of the guys from school. Great. 

“Don’t let them get to you,” my dad said. 

I thought of the people I went to school with and shrugged. It wasn’t like anyone’s opinion of me could get any lower. I rounded another curve and tried not to stare at the angry-looking skid marks on the pavement where the semi-truck had attempted to stop. For some reason, I hadn’t expected them to be so dark. 

“You’re doing fine,” my dad murmured. He had the same tone he used on my little sister when she got hurt and was crying uncontrollably—weirdly sympathetic and exasperated at the same time. 

I didn’t bother responding. There was nothing to say. I wasn’t doing fine. I was barely holding it together. A flash of pink on the side of the road caught my attention, and I glanced to the right. My stomach dropped to the floor, and jerking the car to the gravel shoulder, I slammed on the brakes. 

“What the hell?” my dad snapped.

Rachael ran through the woods on the side of the road, her long, black hair flying like streamers in the wind. She wore the same pink tank top and jean shorts she’d had on the night of the accident. But the blood I couldn’t forget—even in my dreams—was gone. She kept glancing over her shoulder as if something was chasing her, terror etched on her face. 

Ignoring my dad’s questions that were growing louder by the moment, I unbuckled my seatbelt and climbed out of the car to run after her. For a minute, I thought she looked at me. I thought she saw me. But by the time I rounded the hood, she’d vanished as if she’d never been there.

About Christine Allen-Riley

Christine Allen-Riley is easily distracted by shiny things - especially good stories. She loves the hint of a faery tale in the midst of everyday life, and she loves reading and writing YA fiction. She lives in Michigan with her wonderful husband, two amazing sons and three psychotic cats where she compulsively crafts, binge watches Netflix and plots to do terrible things to her characters.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Release the Hounds – Literally! It’s Release Day for Remembered by Moonlight!

Some things are worth waiting for. And I’ve been waiting for this day for years – for the chance to put deliciously dangerous Shape-shifter clan leader Max Savoie and his fiery mate, NOPD detective Charlotte Caissie back into the spotlight with their own book! They’ve been waiting not so patiently for their happy ending. But that road to happily-ever-after has been a rocky one, and still has a twist or two to take.

Here it is – ready to read at last!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Ready – Set – One Click!

REMEMBERED BY MOONLIGHT is now available for pre-order on Amazon!

Release day (October 13, 2014!) is just a week away, but you can have RbM ready and waiting to read with a One-Click today.

I’m taking my show on the road! 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

IWSG: Stepping Out on Faith

There comes a time when you have to put up or shut up. You’ve talked the talk, now walk the walk. Each journey begins with that first step, and when it comes to writing, no one can take it for you. The longer you think about it, the more difficult and scary it becomes. Staring at a blank page, signing up to meet an editor/agent, sending out your proposal, taking a class, agreeing to teach one. The obstacle isn’t your talent or your project, it’s you.

There comes a time when you have to just do it! Here are some tips to help make that all important first step easier:

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

20 Questions with Author Rebekah R. Ganiere

I have a "thing" for fairytales! Look no farther than last week’s blog post accompanying the Fairy Tale Magic Hop for my reasons why. And I love discovering new authors who write what I enjoy. Ta Da! Meet Rebekah! I already knew of her enthusiasm for the paranormal genre through RWA’s FF&P loop, but the minute "One Click" brought the magic of her world to my iPad Kindle app, I realized something else: The woman knows her way around a fairytale! I’m devouring Red the Were Hunter and loving the way she can twist a familiar tale (and tail!). The second book in her Fairelle series, Snow the Vampire Slayer is waiting, crouching and ready to spring the minute it’s released, which is probably just as this post is getting uploaded. Pardon me while I sneak out . . . for a bite!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Fairy Tale Magic Hop . . . and COVER REVEAL!

I’ve had a love affair with fairytales since my mother read them to me as a child. They contain everything I adore: adventure, fantasy, romance, suspense, life lessons, more than a few chills and sometimes the not so happy ending. I’ve never outgrown them. Hans Christian Andersen, Brothers Grimm, right down to Disney and new renderings on TV and movie screens, they had me at “Once upon a time . . .”

Friday, September 12, 2014

Feature Friday Block Party: Whetting the Appetite

A nibble. A tease. My favorite thing about eating out or a dinner party has always been the appetizers. Those quick, delicious samples that excite the taste buds and make the wait for the main course bearable. Too few make you cranky. Too many overstuff and leave no room for the meal. Just the right balance gives you something to whet anticipation while building the desire for more. Rather like the countdown to a book release.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

IWSG: Pay It Forward

You don’t survive in a shark-infested industry like publishing without grabbing onto to life preservers. They’re the people who keep you afloat and your head above those choppy waters. They’ll toss you a ring, jump in with you, extend a hand to pull you out of the current just when you’re ready to go down for the last time.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

In The Name of Love Character Quiz with Jennifer Lowery

No one does an Alpha hero contemporary suspense like Jennifer Lowery! Her heroes are intense and steely, her heroines tough yet vulnerable. Her scenes crackle with terse action and swoon-worthy passion. She had me at Hard Core and her latest release, The Maze reminded me why. Attie and Noah make a wonderful pair, battling over-whelming odds and their desire for one another. And Jen let me borrow them for a quick Q&A.