Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Tree Tales + A Giveaway

Hi everyone!

I'm back from my second official unofficial writing retreat just in time to welcome awesome author Patricia Lynne and her brand-new release, Leaves of Fall. Everyone be sure to thank Patricia for having a new book to promote...otherwise, you might have had to read about my life instead.

Take it away, Patricia!

Five Incredible Fact about Trees

It's only apt that since trees are a major character in Leaves of Fall that I share just how incredible they are in real life (despite not being able to shape shift into human form.) Here are five incredible facts about trees.

1: Trees can tell if deer are trying to eat them. Due to their ability to detect deer saliva, trees defend themselves by producing excess acids that cause their buds to taste bitter so that the deer will lose interest and leave them alone. (source)


3: One of the most dangerous trees in the world is the manchineel tree found in Florida and the Caribbean. Its sap is so poisonous and acidic that merest contact with human skin causes a breakout of blisters, and blindness can occur if it touches a person's eyes. (source)


5: Trees that live in cold climates stop growing during fall in anticipation of the first frost. Trees that had been embryos during cold winters stop growing a few weeks earlier than the rest of the forest. (source)

About The Book

Armory was born into a post-apocalyptic world torn apart by war between man and nature. Trees are the enemy. But when she’s kidnapped by nomads and taken far from her home, a tree nymph is the one who comes to her rescue.

Birch promises he can get Armory home. He says not all trees wanted a war. Armory has no choice to trust him if she wants to see her family again.

--> Together, they trek across the ruins of America, meeting both human and trees who want nothing more than the fighting to stop. But the hatred between the two may be too deep to heal. Armory isn’t sure her friendship with Birch will be enough to convince the human race to take a chance on peace. Birch has a plan, though. 
He’s just not sure he’ll survive.

About The Author

Patricia Lynne is the author of Young Adult Paranormal, Fantasy, and Sci-Fi books. She actually never set out to become a writer, and in fact, she was more interested in art and band in high school and college On a whim, she wrote down a story bouncing in her head and began learning all she could about writing. That was the start of it, and she hasn't regretted a moment. When she's not writing, she's watching Doctor Who or reading about serial killers. She's an avid knitter. One can never have too much yarn. She writes New Adult Urban Fantasy and Sci-Fi Romance under the name Patricia Josephine.

--> Patricia lives with her husband in Michigan, hopes one day to have what will resemble a small petting zoo, and has a fondness for dying her hair the colors of the rainbow.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2019

The End of the Affair (An IWSG Post)

Hello, all!

It's the first Wednesday of the month, which means it's time for another action-packed installment of the Insecure Writer's Support Group.

(If you're interested in more information about the group, signing up, and/or a complete list of participants, please click on the above link.)

This month's awesome co-hosts are Lee Lowery, Juneta Key, Yvonne Ventresca, and T. Powell Coltrin.

This month's (optional) question asks, "What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?"

But I'm going to skip that so I can talk ramble (because there is no plan for this post. It is a straight-up ramble) about something I can't seem to get out of my head.

Let's talk ramble about endings. Specifically, endings to series.

So, maybe you haven't heard of it, but there's this little show out in the world called Game of Thrones (Don't worry—this will be a SPOILER-FREE post.) A few hours before the final season premiere aired, I saw a tweet that asked, "On a scale from 1 to LOST, how disappointing will the end of Game of Thrones be?"

Which seems to suggest that the writer of that tweet is expecting to be disappointed.

And ever since then, I have been filled with Deep Thoughts.

It seems unfair to assume that the end of a show will be disappointing before we've even seen it. I mean, sure, it absolutely could be disappointing. But isn't there a chance it won't be disappointing? Which is not to suggest that every viewer in the world will feel the same way about the ending—that sort of thing doesn't happen, I know—and a lot of times, an ending is disappointing (see: How I Met Your Mother) so maybe a disappointing ending is inevitable.

But what's a writer to do? Is it possible, do you think, to create a satisfying ending for a series, or is it some kind of mission impossible situation that we're all just doomed to fail? Because we don't determine what makes an ending disappointing. That power rests in the hands of the readers/viewers. And maybe Game of Thrones will be disappointing because there's no way for it to live up to readers/viewers' expectations.

One of my current WIPs is the third book in my fantasy series (NOTE: THIS IS NOT ME SUGGESTING IN ANY WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM THAT MY BOOKS ARE AT ALL COMPARABLE TO ASOIAF. BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT). It's not meant to be the true end of a series because my current plan is to eventually write books 4-6, but Book Three is meant to be an ending (meaning, not of the cliffhanger variety) just in case I never actually get around to writing the other three. Which knowing me and how long it takes me to write anything could very well happen.

But that's not the point. Not that I really have a point because I don't. I only have a ramble.

Anyway, I was visiting with one of my beta readers over the weekend and she brought up how scared she is to read Book Three because she's afraid she'll be super mad at me (or at least author me) when she's done. A couple of other readers have expressed their desire for happy endings for certain characters. So, are they going to be mad if those characters don't get happy endings?

Here's the thing (or, at least a thing)—I'm going to write this story the way it demands to be written, regardless of what my readers have told me they want or don't want. If characters need to die, they're going to die. If characters find a way to a happy ending, I'll...well, I'll be super surprised, but if that ends up being best for the story, then absolutely. Live happily ever after, character. More power to you.

Whatever happens, it seems the odds that I'm going to write an ending that disappoints my readers (or at least some of them) are pretty damn good. And I'm okay with that. At least I think I am. In a million years when I've actually published this book, I may find out otherwise, but for the moment, I think I'm okay with that. I suspect I may even delight in it a little bit because I am a terrible person.

But who knows. I don't. All I know is that I can't stop thinking about writing endings, and this post is very long, so here comes the part where I turn things over to you, o writers who are far wiser than I am.

What do you think? What series (either TV or books, or movies—dealer's choice) have you found to be satisfying or disappointing? Have you written the ending of a series? How did it go? Also, how is it May already?

Thanks for stopping by and suffering through my rambling. I'll try to do better next time.

Monday, April 29, 2019

Writemare on Elm Street, Part Two + May Goals

Hi, everyone.

Despite my best intentions, I have not been a very prolific blogger—or anything else, for that matter—lately. I've been distracted by Game of ThronesAvengers: Endgame, and life in general. This week, I'm back in Maine on my second official unofficial writer's retreat and I have one goal in mind:


I am embarrassingly far behind where I had hoped to be at this point in the year. So far behind that it may be too late to really do anything about it. But that doesn't mean I can't try to salvage whatever I can. Right?

So with that in mind, here are my goals for the merry month of May:

1. Complete edits on the Terrible Romance Novel

Yeah. This project could be going better. I have been dragging my feet on the edits thus far, just because I keep cringing at how...not good the beginning of this book is. The problem is when I was writing it, I wasn't sure what exactly I was writing. Now that I have the ending working out and know better what this story is supposed to be, I need to go back and make the start of it all fall in line with the rest. Which is taking far longer than I planned. Which I think means I'm right on schedule.

What it all means is that there's still time to enter my super exciting giveaway...

2. Stop working on Full Circle long enough to complete edits on the Terrible Romance Novel

I suspect my sudden interest in working on Book Three in my fantasy series can be mainly attributed to that whole aforementioned feet-dragging thing. There have been some exciting (to me, anyway) developments in this WIP, and I certainly want to work on this story. It's just not supposed to be my main focus right now.

3. Walk at least three miles a day, or 93 total miles for the month

My attempt to avoid becoming part of the couch. I've done all right with this goal thus far this year—I'm actually ahead for the time being. Here's hoping I can keep it going for at least another month.

That's gonna do it for me today. For some reason, I am crazy tired. I'll be back on Wednesday for IWSG Day. Unless I forget.

Happy Monday, all!

Monday, April 15, 2019

Wind Surfing on Lake Garda + A Giveaway

Hello, all!

Today on My Pet Blog, we're turning things over to Chelsea Ballard, one of the amazing authors contributing to the upcoming Masquerade: Oddly Suited anthology.

Take it away, Chelsea!


Hiya! I’m Chelsea Marie Ballard, the author of the short story ‘Remedy’ from the young adult, romance anthology Masquerade: Oddly Suited.

This is my first time writing a guest post, so go easy on me. This is my first time experiencing all the author things. The first contest I ever entered. The first short story I ever wrote.

See, I’m a pantster. I don’t plot my stories out. No outlines (except a rough one in my head) and the characters make the rules. And then when I get the chance, usually when my kiddos are sleeping, I write it down. 

So, I don’t have much advice, besides the old ‘butt in chair’ schtick. Which leaves the classic ‘what inspired you to write the story’ post. 

Sorry not sorry.

And boy, oh boy, do I have a cool story for you. Or least I think it’s cool, you probably think it is time consuming and possibly boring. But you should stick with it, if not for my insecurity’s sake, for the poor blogger who agreed to host my ramblings. 

You know when you open your windows computer (sorry mac people!) and you have the sign in screen with some dope picture from around the world? One day I saw this sweet picture of someone wind surfing on Lake Garda in Italy.

Wait! Wind surfing! On a lake?! 


Of course, I clicked on the tell me more or whatever button and got put right into Bing. But I didn’t even care because guys, this lake is so cool! It’s the largest lake in Italy and because of the difference in altitude temperatures, it can carry its own wind currents.

Also, the climate is weirdly mild, resulting in citrus trees, which are extremely rare at that latitude. There is even a type of salmon only found in Lake Garda. The population of the fish was declining so some scientists tried to take the salmon to other lakes. But the fish wouldn’t flourish in other lakes! Lake Garda or bust, I guess. 

I didn’t even get to the islands yet. One of them has an old monastery on it from 1220!

At this point, if you’re not a science geek like me, you’re probably snoozing. Wipe that drool from your face and keep reading! This lake boggled my mind. So much so that I envisioned two lovers escaping a mansion, tumbling down the hill and crossing the lake to freedom. Because Lake Garda had everything it needed to survive (fruit, fish, and wind power) it fit perfectly into this idea of a dystopia where there were protected areas where rich people lived and the dangerous, wild, unprotected lands.

I already had Remy and Rudy simmering in my imagination so plopping them into this world was easy. I just added in a pinch of forbidden love and a smidge of on the nose bird puns and boom! ‘Remedy’.

Well, there’s more to it than that, but you’ll have to read it to find out. Thanks for sticking with me for this long and I hope you enjoy my story about young love against all odds. 

And Lake Garda. Always, Lake Garda.


About Remedy

Born with privilege in the Protected Lands means money, power, and ease. For Remy, it means
forever being apart from Rudy. On the night of the Masquerade Ball, Remy must choose
between duty and heart. Which will prove stronger?

About The Author
A student of all things, Chelsea has turned her passion for flowery prose, angsty television, and biology toward her writing. She enjoys rare vines, quirky people, and a good love/hate story. This gold-ranking gamer lives in Bucks County, PA with her family, anxious dog, and fat cat.

About the Anthology

Title: Masquerade: Oddly Suited
Release date: April 30th, 2019
Publisher: Dancing Lemur Press
Genres: Young Adult Fiction: Romance – General / Paranormal / Contemporary
Print ISBN: 9781939844644
EBook ISBN: 9781939844651

Find love at the ball…

Can a fake dating game show lead to love? Will a missing key free a clock-bound prince? Can a softball pitcher and a baseball catcher work together? Is there a vampire living in Paradise, Newfoundland? What’s more important—a virtual Traveler or a virtual date to the ball?

Ten authors explore young love in all its facets, from heartbreak to budding passion. Featuring the talents of L.G. Keltner, Jennifer Lane, C.D. Gallant-King, Elizabeth Mueller, Angela Brown, Myles Christensen, Deborah Solice, Carrie-Anne Brownian, Anstice Brown, and Chelsea Marie Ballard.

Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these ten tales will mystify and surprise even as they touch your heart. Don your mask and join the party…


The authors of Masquerade: Oddly Suited are giving away a $50 Amazon gift card to one winner. To enter, please complete the Rafflecopter below. The giveaway is open internationally from 12:00 am GMT 17th March to 12:00am GMT 6th May.

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