Because everyone deserves the opportunity to dance…

Standard


“The weirdest thing happened. I woke up last night, and I swore the clock said 9:36, but it was later than that when I went to bed.” (Confused? Click Here)

~*~

I’m boosting the signal for my friend, Symphoni, who is a dancer doing wonderful things in her community.

As anyone who has read my book knows, I love dancers. I admire them for their bravery, their strength, and their ability to translate emotions into movements. Symphoni is reaching out to the younger generation by giving them the opportunity to dance, and she is looking for sponsors to help them pursue their dream. Read the rest of this entry

Advertisements

The Advance Reader Copies are Here!

Standard


“Wait, hold up… did you just say it was 2:58? Can’t be!” (Confused? Click here.)

Guess what??!! The advanced reader copies of my new book came in yesterday! (So very excited.) And I’ve set aside 10 of them specifically for my social media family. (That means YOU!) So, send me an e-mail and you could read A Book Without Dragons for free!

Arcs

Read the rest of this entry

Teaser from my new book!

Standard


First off, I accidentally skipped a week on my secret code so, here’s a double dose…. 

“My clock stopped and it’s been stuck on 3:03 for days.”

“It can’t be 1:15 already! Your watch must be fast.” 

And now, on to the main event 🙂 Here is a teaser from my new novel A Book Without Dragons, featuring Willow.

~*~

Willow Ayers heard the news station’s ‘breaking story’ jingle, and promptly abandoned the simulation he was running on his computer. He crossed the cozy bed and breakfast suite in a few less-than-graceful strides and crouched in front of the little television, breathing shallowly, eyes wide and terrified as they locked on the news lady reporting that the hostage situation in Boise was finally under control.

“Now that the hostage has been rescued,” the anchor announced, “authorities have confirmed that it is not the Unitime engineer, Willow Ayers.”

Yes, but is the hostage okay? Willow thought desperately as the reporter summarized the story for the benefit of those who hadn’t been following it all day. Is he hurt? Will he recover? Read the rest of this entry

Teaser next week! Which character do you want?

Standard


Hey everyone! Next week I’ll be sharing a teaser from my upcoming novel A Book Without Dragons. 

Since you’ve all met my five main characters (quick refresher available Here) I decided to let you pick which of the five you’d like to be the star of the teaser. Cast your vote below!

An Open Letter from a Fictional Character (Cider)

Standard


Okay… so, I know I’m supposed to have a letter from each of my POV characters. Trust me, we tried very hard to get Cider to write a letter but (what can I say?) the majority of dogs have no talent for penmanship.

Here’s what I’m doing instead: I’m spreading out a bunch of different toys in a room, and putting Cider in it. He’ll pick up whichever toys he feels best describe the book. My trusty alter-ego Hannah has kindly agreed to moderate the activity.

~*~

Cider bounds into the room, and sees the girl who is not part of his normal home, but he loves her anyway. He also sees toys. Lots of toys! So many—

But wait! The girl is kneeling down to dog-level and opening her arms like she wants cuddles. Cuddles are way more exciting than toys, so Cider runs over and gives her kisses while they have a nice snuggle. Read the rest of this entry

Cider – Chapter 0

Standard


“By the way, you might want to fix that clock. It’s 8:44.” (Confused? Click Here)

~*~

Cider is chewing on his squeaky toy when he smells something that isn’t part of the normal house smells. It smells exciting! Perhaps it’s even more exciting than the squeaky toy, so Cider goes to find out.

Daddy is out of the house, and Mommy is asleep, or else he would go find them so they could discover the smell together. But that is okay; Cider will find it on his own, and then when Daddy gets back he will be proud.

Ah, here it is! Read the rest of this entry

5 Things I Love About Comic-Con

Standard


“Excuse me, do you have the time? My phone is telling me it’s 8:01, but my favorite TV show hasn’t started yet.” (Confused? Click Here)

 I had an UNBELIEVABLE time at Central PA Comic-con last weekend! What an event! The rush of nerd energy is exactly what my life needed. So, in honor of that, here are five things that I absolutely love about Comic Cons… Read the rest of this entry

I know a secret code… d’you want in?

Standard


Hey there! Do you have a piece of paper handy? You might want to write this down…

My Science Fiction Novel, A Book Without Dragons, is coming out in May, and if you frequent this blog, you probably know that the book has a lot to do with clocks being wrong.

So, here’s the deal: in the coming weeks, I will casually mention something about clocks and say what time it is. Each letter of the alphabet corresponds to a different time (the uber-secret code is given below!) Find the matching letter and write it down. If you collect all 13 in order, they spell out a top-secret coupon that you can use on Etsy to get… wait for it… half off my new book!

Pretty easy, right? Here’s the first one… Read the rest of this entry

An open letter from a fictional Character (Bethany)

Standard


Here is the second of my Open Letter Series for the upcoming novel, A Book Without Dragons. And now, I shall turn the keyboard over to Bethany…

~*~

Dear Readers,

You’ve been told (more than once, I believe) that the clocks are wrong. I think you’ve also been told that this is a much larger problem than it sounds, but no one has yet explained why.

Let me start by saying that I was skeptical in the beginning as well. After all, people aren’t idiots. People can make a guess at what time it is. People know approximately when stores open and close. People can put brownies in the oven for around twenty-five minutes without timing it to the second.

That’s all true. The problem is that people aren’t the only ones that use time. Read the rest of this entry

Bethany – Chapter 0

Standard


Hi, everyone! Here is the second of my Chapter 0 series. Let’s check out what Bethany was doing right before the start of A Book Without Dragons…

 ~*~

You stand at the checkout line in the grocery store, listening to the methodical beeping of the items as the sweet, young girl scans them. You don’t look at her. You’d really rather be invisible.

All the same, you imagine her expression—shock, perhaps a touch of disgust—when she sees what you are buying. A pregnancy test? At your age?!

How old was this girl, anyway? Maybe not even 18. Half your age.

To that girl, a pregnancy test is reason for panic rather than hope. You wonder if she’s ever purchased one; even watched it with stalled breath, begging it to be negative.

Meanwhile, you’d give anything for it to be positive. Read the rest of this entry

Five Tales of a Lost Teddy

Standard


Remember how I said each of my five main characters for A Book Without Dragons is written in their own unique writing style? (No? Never fear, I’ll get you up to speed – Click Here).

Well, I thought it would be fun to write a post where I put each of them in the same situation and then write a micro-scene of their reactions in their individual writing style. So, here is what my five characters did when they found a lost teddy bear in the park…

~*~

Bethany (2nd Person, Present Tense)

It looks like a balled-up sweater from a distance, but when you get closer you realize it’s a stuffed bear, and just like that, you are having a terrible day. Read the rest of this entry

Bookcrossing – A Neat Piece of Internet

Standard


Hey, Everyone! This is not so much a neat piece of “Internet” as a neat piece of the world. I absolutely LOVE that this exists. It’s called ‘Bookcrossing’ and it’s essentially turning the whole world into a library.

Picture this…

You’re sitting in a coffee shop, enjoying your favorite chai latte. You look over to the table next to yours and think, “Oh, how sad! Someone has forgotten their book.” You pick up said book, thinking to give it to the manager in case the owner comes back looking for it.

But then you notice a bizarre sticker on the book’s cover. It informs you “I’m not lost. I’m on a journey.” Read the rest of this entry

Cover Reveal coming soon (or even SOONER?!)

Standard


Hey Friends! 

My front cover for A Book Without Dragons is done, and beautiful (and it’s totally my phone’s lock screen because I ❤ it so much!) The official cover reveal is January 27th. 

HOWEVER!!!

If you want to see it even sooner, sign up for my newsletter before this Wednesday. You’ll see it a full week sooner than everyone else 🙂 Click Here to sign up.

 

 

An open letter from a fictional character (Snowiks)

Standard


As promised, here is the first of five letters, directly from one of my characters to you! Snowiks hails from A Book Without Dragons, which is charging into the world in 4 months. (Squee!!) Enjoy! 

~*~

To: Readers

From: Chief Snowiks, CHPD, Idaho

Good Morning, Readers. It has come to my attention that, while you have received information thus far about the main characters in this novel, you have been told little—and possibly nothing—about the place in which these people live. I firmly believe that it is impossible to properly understand a situation without the context of a physical location. Therefore, I’ll be taking this opportunity to tell you where we live. Read the rest of this entry

Snowiks – Chapter 0

Standard


Welcome to my first ‘Chapter 0’ post for A Book Without Dragons! Let’s check out what Snowiks was up to right before the book starts… 

~*~

I scanned and submitted that last of my paperwork, and then stared intently at the phone wishing it would ring. It probably wouldn’t, though. Officer Grayson was no longer a rookie; he no longer called with questions unless something went wrong.

It wasn’t that I particularly wanted anything to go wrong. I just knew that the remaining two hours of my day would feel like ten if I spent them rearranging paperweights. I have four paperweights on my desk: all thank you gifts from the same middle school teacher. Our station was a popular field trip spot with her for a few years, but then she got permission to bring them to a bigger (and probably more exciting) police station in Boise, so that was the end of that. Read the rest of this entry

Upcoming Excitement…

Standard


Good Morning, lovely people!

We are a mere 4.5 months from the release of A Book Without Dragons (can you believe it!!) and I just wanted to give you a heads up about my next round of blog posts.

As you know, I recently did Character Reveals for the five main POV people (well… one of them is a dog…). You can check them in this nifty combined page Here.

So, now that you’ve all met, I decided to give the characters a chance to talk directly to you, the readers. I gave them each the assignment to compose a letter telling the readers about some aspect of the book that they think you should know.

In addition to the letters, I will be posting five “Chapter 0” segments. These are exploring the moments directly before each character’s opening scene, and each will be written in that character’s unique tense / style (Confused about the ‘tense / style’ thing? Click here.)

Okay, friends, let’s do this!

My Characters Decorating Trees

Standard


Memo to All Characters: With the approaching winter holidays, I will be providing each of you with a small pine tree. Please submit your proposals for how you wish to decorate it so I can supply the appropriate ornaments.

Your friendly neighborhood alter-ego

~ Hannah Barbeck.

 

Willow (From A Book Without Dragons)

“I just want lights, please. No ornaments.”

[Hannah: That doesn’t sound like you…]

“And a sophisticated circuit board and programming equipment so I can make the lights spell out seasonal messages and change colors and respond to voice commands.”

[Hannah: Okay, that sounds like you.]

Read the rest of this entry

Character Reveal – Cider

Standard


This is the fifth and final character reveal for A Book Without Dragons! I’ve even collected them all together in this nifty Characters Page, so lovely explorers of the Internet won’t need to go hunting for them.  

~*~

Name: Cider

Appearance: He has amber-brown hair, dark brown eyes, a permanent smile, two left feet… Oh, did I mention yet that he’s a dog? 😉 He’s a mixed breed, a little smaller than a golden retriever and a little more energetic than a tornado. Read the rest of this entry

Character Reveal – Bethany

Standard


We’re at # 4 of my character reveals for A Book Without Dragons! (If you want to get caught up, the other reveals are all Here.) This week we’ll be meeting the lady who gets the weirdest writing style in the book, so if you think I had a lot of fun writing her scenes then you obviously know me very well.

~*~

Name: Bethany Gardner

Appearance: She is a heavy-set, middle-aged woman. She wouldn’t have much to say about her appearance that could be construed as positive, but that has more to do with her attitude than her looks. She has thick, dark hair (which she dyes to keep the grays away), kind eyes, and a soft voice perfectly suited for reading bedtime stories. Read the rest of this entry

The Videos that inspired my Dancing Story (Which is free on Amazon, by the way!!)

Standard


Hey, guess what? My Dancing Novelette is free on Amazon for the next five days! (Snag a copy here). To kick this off, I thought I’d share a little of my inspiration for the story…


When I’m writing a certain project, I generally have a ‘tool kit’ of inspirational things that I go to when I need to get the juices flowing. Sometimes it’s a song, or a series of pictures, or a passage of fiction, or a physical object… you get the idea.

When I was working on The World That Forgot How to Dance, my primary jump-starters were these two videos. I normally watched them before every writing session, and sometimes in the middle of a writing session if I got stuck, and sometimes right before bed if I wanted my subconscious to keep working on the story while I slept. Read the rest of this entry

Character Reveal – Snowiks

Standard


Today we have the third of my character reveals for A Book Without Dragons!

The spotlighted character this week has actually been on my blog before for a crossover drabble back in September (Which you can read Here, if you missed it. It’s particularly worth a look if you’re a fan of Lester from The World That Forgot How to Dance.)

~*~

Name: Harold Snowiks – I mostly refer to him by his last name

Appearance: He’s approaching retirement when the book opens (and he’s not at all excited about the prospect of being put out to pasture, by the way.) His hair is mostly gray, but was dark brown once. He’s tall, has smoky-brown eyes, and a focused expression that frequently comes off as ‘stern.’ Read the rest of this entry

Holiday Sale!

Standard


Hi Everyone!

Just wanted to let you all know that I’m having a holiday sale for my book on Etsy! Use Coupon Code DANCE to get a dollar off my new fantasy novelette, “The World That Forgot How to Dance.” (It would make a unique stocking stuffer! Also, I’ll sign and personalize them at no extra charge.)

Click Here to go to my Etsy shop

I’ll be running this sale from now until December 31st. Happy reading 🙂

Dancing Cover

Drabble: Ellsie and Lester Carving Pumpkins

Standard

This short story features characters from my novelette The World That Forgot How to Dance.
No Spoilers

~*~

“Ellsie, will you leave it alone? The pumpkin looks fine.”

Lester’s voice poked a hole in Ellsie’s concentration, so she stopped dancing before she could call the magic into her movements. She gave Lester the stink-eye, which would have been much more effective if he’d been looking at her. Lester, however, was dedicatedly working on carving a jack-o-lantern and couldn’t be bothered.

Sighing, Ellsie frowned at her own pumpkin, which hadn’t even been hollowed out yet. “It’s not fine,” she insisted. “It has this giant lump on it.”

“And it’s a fine lump,” he said. “A glorious lump. The best lump in the whole world.” Read the rest of this entry

Character Reveal – Zabby

Standard


Here is the second of my character reveals for A Book Without Dragons!

~*~

Name: Zabby (short for ‘Elizabeth’) Reynolds

Appearance: She is thin, blonde, blue-eyed, pretty, and doesn’t appreciate all of the stereotypes that come along with these things.

Occupation: Waitress at the small-town Diner. It’s not a ‘forever’ job, though. Read the rest of this entry

Using dreams in writing

Standard


I’ve read many a whimsical tale about writers who wake up with a really cool story idea still clinging to them from dreamland. I am (regrettably…) not one of those writers, but I’ve learned that there are other ways of using one’s dreams besides simply transcribing them.

Last July, I set a challenge for myself during Camp Nanowrimo. I wanted to write a different short story every day for 31 days. I actually blogged about the whole experience here if you’re curious.

One of those days, I woke up having just finished my ‘running dream.’ I’ve been having this dream for several years, recurring every few months or so, and I love it. It’s very simple: in the dream I’m escaping some unnamed evil by running through the forest, and having an awesome time while doing it. Read the rest of this entry

Character Reveal – Willow

Standard


Welcome to my first of five character reveals for A Book Without Dragons (Coming May 21, 2016. I set a date! Exciting, yes??) Over the next couple months, I’ll be introducing you to my five main POV characters.

~*~

Name: Willow Ayers

Appearance: He’s a little shorter than average, and slightly chubby—a very huggable man, I think. He has curly, blonde hair (though it’s not super curly. Or super blonde.), blue eyes, and is rather pale, though not sickly. He has a few scars from a car accident. Don’t ask him about his scars, though. He doesn’t like to talk about it. Read the rest of this entry

Social Media Regrouping

Standard


I’ve been steadily collecting various social media platforms over the past year. (Kind of like a crazy cat lady… oh, just one more…) I figured now might be a good time to just regroup and establish what purpose each of these lovely, cuddly platforms are serving.

So, if you’ve been looking for new and exciting ways to spend time with me on the internet, this blog post is for you! (The titles are all clickable, except for “blog.” Since, y’know… you’re already here…)


 Blog: I update the blog weekly with any of the following: insights to my writing process, announcements, interviews with characters, little stories / crossovers / deleted scenes involving characters, or book reviews. Or whatever else strikes my fancy.

Facebook: I use this one mostly for pictures and for sharing book-related posts. I’ll also share something if it makes me think of a specific character of mine. You’ll also find the occasional old-school status update. Read the rest of this entry

Drabble: Derryl has a bad dream

Standard


The release of the Coven anthology is almost upon us!! In honor of that, here is a little snippet of the characters in my story, “Across Silence and Darkness.” Unlike my usual drabbles, this one takes place in the character’s own world. This is just me peeking in on what they were doing before the story came along. Enjoy!

Any questions about the story, the characters, or the (almost here!) anthology: drop me a comment 🙂

~*~

After what felt like years of combating the nightmare holding him prisoner, Derryl finally fought his way back to consciousness. He sat up in bed, kicking the blankets away as if they contained the disease of bad dreams and just touching them might be enough to infect him again.

Once this foolishness was completed, Derryl faced a familiar problem: should he go back to bed or not? Read the rest of this entry

Guest Appearance! Crystin Goodwin’s Characters from UnBlessed

Standard

This post written by Crystin Goodwin
Featuring characters from her book UnBlessed
Which is FREE! 
(Just so you know. Last day to get it!) 

No Spoilers.

Extra-special guest post today, my friends! In honor of the last day of her sale for Blessings of Myrillia, I interviewed Crystin Goodwin! And by that I mean I interviewed her characters. And by that I mean I asked her to stick three characters in a room with strange boxes. 

This is what I like to call “The Mystery Box Interview.” (It’s great fun for anyone who enjoys throwing characters into odd situations.) I ‘gave’ Crystin three boxes and filled them with objects that I thought would spark conversation. She then placed the boxes and her characters in a room, and – ta da! 

~*~ 

“Lucien. Lucien, wake up!”

Grumbling, Lucien rolled over and tried to wave away his visitor. “Five more minutes …”

“Lucien, please! Please wake up. I don’t—I don’t know what to do!” Panic laced the familiar voice. Read the rest of this entry