Mid-Month Update for July

Horn Worm in the Tomatoes by Randy Cockrell

Horn Worm in the Tomatoes by Randy Cockrell

I cannot believe it’s the middle of the month already. July is a busy month and I guess that’s why it’s going so fast.

Fourth of July was pretty much rained out here in Payson. The town held the fireworks but very few people were left to watch them fire off in the rain.

The garden has been going like blockbusters. I’m harvesting blackberries, swiss chard, herbs, and sungold cherry tomatoes. The other tomato plants are producing but they’re all still green. There is no sign of hornworms yet, which makes me thankful. They get as big as my forefinger and can eat a tomato plant to just stem in no time flat. This is the time of year they show up so I’ve been carefully examining the plants every time I water. Unfortunately, they look exactly like a tomato leaf so they’re tough to spot. Other plants in the garden, hot and sweet peppers, cantaloupe, summer squash, butternut squash, peas, and green and yellow beans. The cantaloupe have, so far, produced two small ‘lopes but the pill bugs are eating them before they are even close to ripe. I don’t generally like to use bug killer but if I don’t, there won’t be any cantaloupe for me. The picture at the top of the page is of a hornworm, just in case you’ve never seen one before. It looks like an alien, doesn’t it?

July’s Camp NaNo is proceeding nicely. I have a 7K short story done and yesterday I completed the first of two novelettes for my new Brown Rain series. The novelette, titled The Beginning, finished at 21K words in the first draft which puts it in the novella category. I don’t mind. Longer is nearly always better in my opinion. I’ll start the second one today and continue my march toward the 50K NaNo goal for the month. I’m at 28K, past the word mid-point with time to spare.

I’m 18 chapters into the semi-final revision of Revolution, a little over half way done. I’ll hand it off to one more editor, my hubby, for a final look see then one last edit before formatting for release. Yes, the editing, rewriting process takes longer than the 1st draft writing. Be patient, it’s on its way.

The Goodreads site offers a Question the Author option. What do you think, are there questions you’d like to ask and no place to ask them? Would you be interested if I signed up for that on the Goodreads site?

Thanks for stopping by my blog today.

Like any author, my books sell based on reviews. Would you be interested in getting a free copy to review for me? Go to the button on the right side of the blog or go to my Newsletter tab to sign up. Or sign up here. Use Control, Click to access the link. Let me know you’d like to be a reviewer on the e-tailer or Goodreads site of your choice.

I have an in depth interview on my Smashwords Author page. You can read it here. Don’t see information about me you’d like to know? Leave me your question in my comments and I’ll try to answer it.

Hard Choices: A Gulliver Station Story released May17th! I’m pretty excited about it. You can buy at: Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or Smashwords today!

Spotlight: Selena Laurence’s New Book – Camouflaged

I don’t do book reviews very often and I’ve never done a spotlight. But Selena’s part of my writing group, Power Writing Hour, and we like to give each other a hand when our books come out. I’ve read both this book and it’s follow on book, Hidden. They’re both page turners to say the least. Here’s some info about the author and the book. For fun, I’ve posted an excerpt and a picture of the book cover at the end. If you’re ready to buy, there’s a link at the bottom that will take you directly to Amazon. Enjoy!

To celebrate the release of Camouflaged Selena is having a great giveaway, go to this rafflecopter link to enter: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/ef955d0/

The Book

 Camouflaged (Hiding From Love Novella #0.5)

Gabe Thompson enlisted to help out his buddy, but three years later he’s 100% US military bad boy, serving in the desert of Afghanistan where the days are hot, but the nights are hotter.

Alexis Garcia is out to save the world. The University of Texas freshman has come to Afghanistan to do aid work with the United Nations. She’s all about the peace, and she has no use for the camp’s biggest, baddest, gun toting player.

But, sometimes camouflage is more than a color, and people aren’t what they seem. When conflict develops not only between Gabe and Alexis, but also all around them, they’re forced to look deeper, and what they find will rock their worlds and change their hearts forever.

Camouflaged is the prequel novella to Top 100 bestselling Military Romance, Hidden.

The Author

 Selena Laurence lives in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and spends a hell of a lot of time at soccer games, on her laptop, and reading. She requires a Mocha Latte every day to function, keeps a goldendoodle at her feet most of the time, and has more kids than she knows what to do with. Her husband, Mr. Laurence, spends as much time as he can at the office and the gym in order to avoid the kids, the dog, the laptop and the reading, but he always shows up for the soccer games, and he makes a mean Mocha Latte.

Selena can help you Escape the Everyday at these online locations: www.selenalaurence.com

Twitter: @selenalaurence

Facebook: SelenaLaurenceRomanceAuthor

The Reviews

 5 STARS: “absolutely amazing. Definitely another book that is going on my perfect romance shelf.” – Heather, Not Everyone’s Mama Book Reviews

4 STARS: “Selena does a fantastic job building the characters and the story line so that you’re sucked in from page one.” – Michele, Goodreads

5 STARS: “well written beautiful storyline and characters” – Caryn, Goodreads

5 STARS: “This is a perfect love story” – Mary, Goodreads

4 STARS: “Selena Laurence grabs you from the first paragraph and pulls you into Gabe and Alexis’ story which keeps you interested until the very end.” – Mary, Goodreads

The Excerpt

             I slowly looked down, meeting up with a tight t-shirt stretched across full breasts and a tiny waist that was followed by low-riding cargo pants which fell from narrow hips down long legs. The top of her head barely reached my chin, so I put her at about five foot four. Her crazy mess of hair was half hanging alongside her face in loose waves and I thought it would feel really good if I dug my hands into it while I yanked her in for a hard, hot kiss on those lips slick with some kind of girly lip crap.

“Sorry,” she said, looking at me like I was the enemy. Her voice was low and rough, like a great torch singer. I wondered if she was musical, because looking at her made my head spin like there was a song ricocheting around in it. I grinned at her a little to see what her reaction would be.

“No problem, babe. Can I do something for you . . . or even to you, if you’d prefer?” She scowled more and her eyes narrowed. “My name’s Alexis, not ‘babe,’ and I really doubt there’s anything you could do that I’d be interested in,” she snapped.

The book is now available on Amazon and other ebook retailers.  Here is the buylink for Amazon: http://amzn.to/1duopGr

Image

Spotlight: Seleana Laurence: Hidden

I’m trying something new this week, a spotlight on another writer’s work. I haven’t done this before so let me know how you like it.

Many thanks to Brianna Soloski for this post info. Check out her blog GirlSeeksPlace at: http://girlseeksplace.wordpress.com/2013/08/19/spotlight-hidden-2/

I’ve personally read this book and it is well done. It’s on sale this week so go ahead and check it out!

HiddenTourButtonHIDDENcoverSynopsis: Nick Carlisle comes to Hawaii to hide—from what happened during his service in Afghanistan, from relationships, from his future. Lyndsey Anderson came to Hawaii to hide too—from the man who abused her, from the sacrifices she made, from her dark past. But when Nick meets Lyndsey, Hawaii gets a whole lot hotter, and they find they can’t hide their hearts. As Nick fights to come to terms with what he’s done, Lyndsey struggles to forgive herself for the choices she’s made. But when the dangerous past threatens the beautiful present, can they survive to learn how to love? And who will finally reveal what’s hidden?
Add Hidden on Goodreads.

SelenaLaurenceAuthor bio: I love to write romantic stuff that helps you get away. Life can be a grind, and things like jobs and school and dirty dishes make Jill a dull girl – and me too! So, I write Contemporary and New Adult romances about hot guys and smart girls and cool places. It’s an Escape from the Everyday.

Find Selena on:

Facebook    Goodreads     Twitter    Blog

Purchase links:

Amazon

Hidden is on sale for 99c this week only!

A new book by Selena Laurence: Hidden

I beta read this book for my writer friend Selena. I’m not usually a reader of romances but I wanted to help her out. I was totally impressed. The story is fast moving and engaging. The characters are realistic and I was interested in them and the story from the first chapter. I hope you check it out.

HIDDEN – A Hiding From Love Novel

New Adult Contemporary Romance

Nick Carlisle comes to Hawaii to hide—from what happened during his service in Afghanistan, from relationships, from his future. Lyndsey Anderson came to Hawaii to hide too—from the man who abused her, from the sacrifices she made, from her dark past. But when Nick meets Lyndsey, Hawaii gets a whole lot hotter, and they find they can’t hide their hearts. As Nick fights to come to terms with what he’s done, Lyndsey struggles to forgive herself for the choices she’s made. But when the dangerous past threatens the beautiful present, can they survive to learn how to love? And who will finally reveal what’s hidden?

And here’s a little about Selena Laurence:

I love to write romantic stuff that helps you get away. Life can be a grind, and things like jobs and school and dirty dishes make Jill a dull girl – and me too! So, I write Contemporary and New Adult romances about hot guys and smart girls and cool places. It’s an Escape from the Everyday. I love to hear from readers, so don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter, and feel free to email me, Tweet or Facebook any time! www.selenalaurence.com.

Image

Book Report – Blind Your Ponies

I’m reading a book by Stanley Gordon West called Blind Your Ponies. I was reluctant to read it because of the title but two friends recommended it so I picked it up.

Book Title: Blind Your Ponies

Author: Stanley Gordon West

ISBN 978-0-9656247-8-7

Format: Paperback (4X6 inches)

Pages: 574

Here’s the back of the book blurb:

Willow Creek, Montana. With bold strokes on a large canvas, Stanley West has drawn an entire village of curious and outlandish characters who have been cast so vividly that one can see the, here, them, laugh with them, feel with them — people as real as relatives.

When Same Pickett come to the quiet little village to hide from the violence and madness that have shattered his life, he discovers buried and shadowed stories fraught with aching regret, human wreckage, and heartrending bravery–people silently bearing their broken dreams and unbearable sorrows. Can they be aroused by the unexpected and least likely source in their midst? encouraged and uplifted to embrace life for all its worth? Out of these utterly ordinary lives, West brings forth a startling glimpse into the hidden places of the human heart and characters who will stay with you like old friends long after you’ve turned the last page. Timeless and enchanting, inspiring and hilarious, compelling and compassionate– A song of homage to the lives it brings to light-

Note, the title is from a story about the local Indian tribe folklore and not about blind ponies. So don’t let the title put you off. I love the descriptive words Mr. Pickett uses to describe the people he meets, his own life and his romantic interest. They’re beautiful turns of phrase that show insight and reveal secrets. The main plot is about his role as the high school basketball coach. With only 5 boys on the team, they’re the regions underdogs. But that’s not the whole story.

Mr. Pickett delves into the lives of the town people, Many of them broken and damaged goods, but still, plugging away, I’m a fast reader but I’m not reading this one fast. I’m savoring each paragraph.

Warning: there is violence and sex, but please don’t let that put you off. This is a great read.