The Last ‘Rivalry’ Volunteer Request Post

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It’s only a few more weeks or less before War of Nytefall: Rivalry will be released.  At least that’s the plan.  Either way, I’m still hoping to get a few more volunteers for guest posts.  I have 11 already.  Trying not to be greedy, but I will admit that blogging seems to be the only thing that seems to work in regards to sales.  Anyway, here are the two types of posts I can do if you’re interested:

  1. Standard ‘Book is Live’ post like I do on my blog.
  2. A specific topic chosen for your blog that we can discuss because you know your audiences better than I do.

The big in question is Volume 3 of my vampire/fantasy series.  I mean, magic and monsters fantasy instead of ‘why is the undead guy lurking around a high school for jailbait?’ thing.  This is an action adventure tale about the Vampire Civil War of Windemere, so the heroes and villains all sport fangs.  Hope this clarifies a few things for anyone curious and maybe it can help us figure out some topics.

I’m going to keep this up as a sticky post through Monday in case there are people out there who may want to help, but are away for the weekend.  Thanks to everyone who has already offered to help and those who are about to.

(An aside: Never be afraid to ask me to post a promo for you.  I’m trying my best to keep up with other authors and watch for these kinds of requests, but I find myself falling behind.  Sorry.)

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Just One Really Busy Week to Go!

I don’t know why I think I can get writing done during the week.  Most days, I have work then I come home with just enough time to do my biking then either pick my son up or meet him at the bus.  Then, it’s off to a nightly appointment or activity, so I’m tired by the time I get back.  Usually scrambling to eat dinner or, if missed earlier, do my biking.  I can’t just start writing at 9 PM and stop mid-section at 11 PM.  So, I didn’t really try and settled in more for blogging at night.  April has been set up and I’m moving into May, which is good.  Wow.  I’m just cramming things in here.

The thing is that I feel like I’m sprinting at full speed every week.  The weather being wacky isn’t helping since it sets off my cold-weather allergy.  Another wrinkle is that a bunch of the shows I watch are back:

  • Into the Badlands (Last season)
  • American Gods (Not sure I’ll stay)
  • Big Bang Theory (Came this far, so want to see it to the end.)
  • Bull
  • The Orville
  • Happy!
  • Miracle Workers

That’s not counting Netflix stuff and any comedy shows I decide to check out.  ‘Black Lightning’ just ended for the season, but it’s like everything else is striking now.  3 of the above shows are going to end though, so it’ll be temporary.  I know this is a ridiculous thing to complain about since I choose to watch the shows.  Still, it really makes me feel like there aren’t enough days in a lifetime.  Guess me being too tired or cold or busy at night are the bigger factors though.

All I know is that I’m not thrilled with doing 1 chapter every 2 weeks.  Tried to write by word count, but I kept losing continuity.  That’s really important to me.  If I do an editing run and find that things are out of synch and don’t match up then I feel like I wasted all that first draft time.  Small issues are one thing, but if I have to rewrite 75-90% of what I did off my notes and outlines then I done fucked up.  This is why I hate these long gaps and how I still seem to be writing in spite of my surroundings.  I’m not sure my foreshadowing is working and I worry that the characters are connecting more with my personal mood than the story.  Reading through what I did previously helped a little bit, but that costs me precious time that I don’t have any more.  Not easy going from being able to dedicate 4 full weeks to a project down to scrambling for a little time.

Not much else to talk about since work is going well, my son is doing great, and that life issue is still battering at me.  I’ll get to write this weekend for a little more time, but I have an interview tomorrow for a summer job.  Thinking that I’ll write when I wake up instead of trying to go back to bed.  I’ve got 2 sections of Chapter 7 left and then Chapter 8 is a 4-section piece.  Be nice to get both of those done before Monday.  Probably going to come up 1-2 sections short though.  Seems to always be the case.

Next week is going to be a rough one.  My son has his last 3 review classes after school with each one leading into either martial arts or an appointment.  The two free days have martial arts or an appointment too.  The review sessions have been helping him a lot, but it throws off our dinner times.  So, I eat late and that means less time to do things at night, but it’s worth him getting the help.  He’s much better at reading and math even though he turns on the drama when I ask him to do homework.  He does it, but I have to sit through a few minutes of Shakespearean tragedy.

For anyone wondering, I’m still hoping to release War of Nytefall: Rivalry in April.  I feel bad that I can only hope and not give confirmation, but I’m still getting used to having the new schedule.  It’s the first release since I began working, so there are going to be some hiccups.  Going to make another request for volunteers tomorrow.  If you’ve already volunteered for a post then I hope you’d be willing to reblog the request.  Got a person saying the didn’t think they had to volunteer since the comments showed I had so many people to help.  It was weird.

So, goals for next week?

  1. Lots of driving around.
  2. Try to finish Chapter 8 if I get the time.
  3. Scheduling May blog posts.
  4. Set up War of Nytefall: Rivalry on Amazon.
  5. Biking, eating, sleeping, and the usual.
  6. Watch TV to prevent the DVR from filling up.
  7. (This weekend) Watch ‘Infinity War’ as ‘homework’.
  8. Read more Naruto and Fushigi Yugi.
  9. Work (This is really a given.)
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Partners in Crime and Fate

Hearts once cold
Beat anew
With hunger and passion
For a world
That once was a shadow
Meals regain taste
Warmth of sun on the skin
No longer cold
The pair indulge in sensations
That once were memories
The past they share
Revived in quips and chats
Triggered by events
The strengthening of a bond
That once was frayed
One step is all they need
A catalyst to spark their lives
And roil desires
Belonging to a love
That once was dead

(I was going to make a long post, but this poem came to mind.  Honestly, I think it’s obvious where things are going since War of Nytefall: Loyalty.  That means the real story is how they handle it this time and what dynamic will appear between two very powerful personalities.)

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Guest Post – D.L.Finn – “Just Her Poetry Seasons of a Soul.”

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I am very pleased to welcome D.L.Finn to Fiction Favorites on this TGIF Friday. She is launching her first book of poetry and it is great to have her here to tell you about it.

Thank you, John, for having me on your blog to celebrate today’s release of my first poetry book, “Just Her Poetry Seasons of a Soul.”

Finn Facts:

  1. Snowstorms distract me, and I don’t get much writing done.
  2. My mind wanders into the land of writing when I cook. I burn a lot of dinners.

Just Her Poetry Cover


Take a journey with D.L. Finn as she blends her love of nature with her deepest emotions. Sit with her on the forest floor observing its tranquil beauty, or stroll along the ocean’s shore admiring the vastness of its horizon. Here in these peaceful moments, you’ll be able to experience her thoughts and feelings in the light—and in the darkness…

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Derailing Bedlam: Trust Us. We’re Semi-Professionals Part 3 #fiction #adventure

As usual, here is your warning that this story has cursing, sex (not graphic), innuendo, and violence.  It’s my Rated-R action adventure called Derailing Bedlam.  This is the fourth outing (third official) for Cassidy and Lloyd, so feel free to click on one of the two covers to see how it started.  Each one is 99 cents!

Cover by Jon Hunsinger

Cover Art by Jon Hunsinger











Continue reading

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The Challenge of Writing Exes that Don’t Hate Each Other

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I’m not sure if I’ll be writing tips or just a regular paragraph discussion post because I don’t know what to really say.  Writing Mab and Clyde was a challenge because they had such a long history.  They’d loved, broken up, and went back to each other, which means they already found a way to put the past behind them.  It’s almost like you missed out on another story, but it’s really one that isn’t as interesting to tell as War of Nytefall.  The two of them were actually your standard vampire thief couple, which is a reason why their new status as Dawn Fangs is played up as life-changing.  This really doesn’t help with the subject though.

Whenever we read about exes, it tends to be messy or played up for comedy.  One of the former pair is commonly some kind of a jerk and the other is played up to be the victim too.  You’re made to take a side in this broken relationship.  If anything, the writer makes it utterly clear why they broke up and whose fault it is.  You understand the past and are given enough info to be satisfied while getting the snark that is constantly thrown around when they interact.  This isn’t always the case since there are times when the exes work together and harbor feelings.  It’s made clear that they will reunite too.  Personally, I think this plays similar to the new relationship where both people are fairly dense about what is going on.  Still, these are the two common paths for writing exes who don’t despise each other.

Clyde and Mab were a challenge even though I would put them in that second category.  I needed to find the right balance of insult hurling and anger over past mistakes with the respect and trust of their partnership.  That really wasn’t easy because many people don’t think you should ever work with an ex or interact with them at all.  So, there’s already a slight uphill battle here.  I have been surprised by seeing people complain about movies, shows, and books that have exes acting friendly with each other.  It’s almost like people take offense at the idea that a split can happen amicably.  Can’t say that’s entirely far-fetched considering that’s usually the case, but it’s odd that this is an arena where suspense of disbelief is harder to achieve for many people.  It means there’s a bigger hurdle to get over and it depends a lot on the story and characters.

So, what are some tactics?

  1. Do not overplay the ‘we used to be together’ antics, which include comical arguments about past incidents and verbal jabs about the same.  After the 5th ‘he sucked in bed’ joke on the same page, it will feel like the speaker is harboring a really big grudge instead of having moved on.  Make these things happen from time to time, but also fit the scene.  Give the memories a trigger such as a failed attempt to be nice or seeing another couple.
  2. Focus more on the present than the past with these characters.  They are still working together and being friendly because they’ve mostly moved on.  You need to make sure the audience believes that things have been settled.  This means having them talk more about what they are doing and making a few conversations fairly simplistic because the characters might be trying to stay on topic.  It’s a common tactic to focus on the business side of a relationship to avoid thinking about how it used to be.
  3. If you really want to touch on the subject, use the other characters that are aware of the past.  They can comment on the exes’ interaction and connect it to the past.  It could be done to hint that they think a reunion will happen or that they are baffled about how the two can get along.  Considering how uncommon it is for exes to stay friends, it isn’t too shocking to see others wonder about how one former couple pulled it off.

That’s really all I can think of.  A lot of the Mab/Clyde stuff was created on the fly, so I just let them work it out on the page.  That might be why it gets a little messy between them since there’s some confusion on their part.  Hmmm, that’s probably a topic for another day.

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Cover Reveal: A Time Traveler’s Theory of Relativity

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I love cover reveals, especially the ones in which I get to participate. The marvelous Nicole Valentine, whom you remember from this guest post, is back with the cover of her middle grade science fiction novel, A Time Traveler’s Theory of Relativity (Carolrhoda Books/Lerner) due out October 1. Nicole is represented by Linda Epstein.

Take a good look. Drink in the greatness.

Now, let’s talk to Nicole.

El Space: For quick facts about yourself?
Nicole: I love falconry and want to train my own hawk or falcon someday.
I am a technologist and author, but I also used to design cross stitch samplers! They were from the vantage point of famous classic characters in classic literature.
I also knit and I used to be the Chief Technology Officer of a site called which was great because I got free yarn.
All our family pets have literary…

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