Monday, November 16, 2020

Shannon Lawrence & Happy Ghoulidays!

 Shannon's latest book is out and about on November 20th!!

In celebration we're talking about our favourite cold-weather holidays.

I live in Northern Ontario in Canada so we have a lot of these! My favourite is definitely Christmas. We almost always have a white Christmas. I actually only remember one year having a green Christmas. That was so weird for us!!

Growing up we had a small in our back yard so we often spent Christmas afternoon taking our new toboggans or magic carpets down the hill. I'm sure our parents were thrilled to have us outside for most of the day!


The holidays can be a stressful time, as we all know, but I'm hoping to lighten up this winter season with a little holiday horror.

Maybe "lighten up" isn't the right term.

The first story begins the winter holidays with Thanksgiving, with stories representing Christmas, Hanukah, Hogmanay (the New Year), Yule, Groundhog Day, and, finally, Valentine's Day. From serious horror to tongue-in-cheek. Read them all at once or save them for their holidays. Or both! 

Release day is November 20, which also happens to be my birthday! Just in time for Thanksgiving week. You can pre-order the Kindle version, with other versions, including paperback, available on release day.

Blurb: Family time can lead to murder and mayhem, especially during the holidays. A turkey with a tale to tell, elves under attack, sorority sisters putting on a killer party, a woman's desperation to save her family, and a stranger ringing in the New Year. These and other tales of woe await you beneath the mistletoe.

Be careful who you offer a kiss. It may be your last.

About the Author: A fan of all things fantastical and frightening, Shannon Lawrence writes in her dungeon when her minions allow, often accompanied by her familiars. She writes primarily horror and fantasy. Her stories can be found in several anthologies and magazines, and her collections, Blue Sludge Blues & Other Abominations and Bruised Souls & Other Torments, are available in stores. You can also find her as a co-host of the podcast “Mysteries, Monsters, & Mayhem.” When she's not writing, she's hiking through the wilds of Colorado and photographing her magnificent surroundings. Though she often misses the Oregon coast, the majestic and rugged Rockies are a sight she could never part with. Besides, in Colorado there's always a place to hide a body or birth a monster. What more could she ask for? 

Release date: November 20

Pre-order link:






Amazon Author Page:

How about you? Are you ready for the Ghoulidays? Do you have any favorite cold-weather holidays or memories?

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Tyrean Martinson & Liftoff!

 My blog buddy Tyrean Martinson has a book releasing today!!

Liftoff is Book 1 of the Rayatana Series. 

Groovy…Wake up and smell the 90s…And I oop… and other Hazards of Slang in Teen Dialogue

The danger of using slang in teen dialogue is that it is timely and not timeless. Add in the factor that most YA authors are actually adults who no longer speak the common slang of the day, and it can be downright unfriendly territory, especially given the current prevalence of the phrase, “Okay, Boomer.” 

So, what do we do? 

Use slang sparingly so our work is timeless instead of timely.

We research. Forms of research can include: films, show episodes, Youtube, TikTok, Instagram, and Urban Dictionary. But, more importantly for modern dialogue, listen to the teens around you. Get feedback from teens on current slang. Slang can be a matter of culture, style, and region, so, next…

We consider our characters. Our characters’ personality and culture will inform their dialogue. This is true for teens, adults, small children, and the elderly. It doesn’t matter how old your character is, what matters is who they are. You might write a seventeen-year-old who says, “Groovy.” You might write a 90-year-old who says, “And I oop,” and maybe even uses it at the right time and place. 

And always, we find beta readers who are either teens or parents of teens. I changed sections of dialogue in Liftoff at the behest of my nineteen-year-old daughter. Feedback helps.

Title: Liftoff

Subtitle: The Rayatana Series, Book 1

A spaceship in disguise,

An Earth girl searching for a sense of home,

And a Thousand Years’ War between alien races,

All collide on a summer afternoon.

An old movie theater welcomes Amaya in and wraps her up in the smell of popcorn and licorice. But one sunny afternoon during a matinee, the movie screen goes dark. The theater rumbles.

Amaya gets trapped in the middle of an ancient alien conflict. Angry and frightened, Amaya entangles herself in a life-changing cultural misunderstanding with Sol, a young alien who keeps omitting key information, even while they’re on the run from his enemies.

What will it take to survive a battle between alien races involved in an ancient war?

Liftoff is a fast-paced read for fans of Code 8, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Cobra Kai. 

Release Date: November 10, 2020

Paperback ISBN: ISBN: 978-0-9889933-8-9 

Ebook ISBN: ISBN: 978-0-9889933-9-6

Copyright Tyrean Martinson November 2020

Publisher: Wings of Light Publishing, Gig Harbor, WA, USA

Professionally Edited by Chrys Fey

Cover Art and Interior Design by Carrie Butler

LINKS: Kindle Barnes and Noble Kobo Smashwords Goodreads

About the Author: Tyrean Martinson is an author and teacher from Washington State. As a former fencer and kickboxer, she enjoys writing fight scenes in fast-paced novels and novellas. As a teacher and writing tutor, she loves to get students writing and reading comfortably by any means: talk-to-text, short writing assignments, short stories, novellas, and adventures. She wrote her latest novella, Liftoff, for herself during COVID, but realized it also fits a dream she’s had for a while: to create a short, fast-paced read for teen/YA readers who love popcorn movies, adventure, and sweet romance. 

Author Links: Blog Newsletter Instagram Twitter Facebook

My Review:

So much fun! Liftoff is a fabulous introduction to a new world and series. Amaya's life is completely disrupted when she heads to a movie with her friends. Instead of enjoying the film, she finds herself on an alien spaceship flying to a different solar system. And things only get more complicated from there! Alien species, new technologies, a heap of expectations, family drama and a cute alien who will do anything for her change everything for Amaya. Fascinating story and I'm looking forward to more!

Hope about you? Anyone using Groovy out there? What's your favourite slang term? Anyone else read LiftOff yet?

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

IWSG & Saving Civilization

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the brainchild of Alex J. Cavanaugh. He, his clones, minions, friends, and fellow authors make it an amazing event every month.

IWSG badge

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!  

The awesome co-hosts for the November 4 posting of the IWSG are Jemi Fraser, Kim Lajevardi, L.G Keltner, Tyrean Martinson, and Rachna Chhabria! 


Before we get to today's question, I want to give a shout out to our own Elle Cardy/Lynda Young. Her latest book, Well of Ash is SO GOOD!!! The world-building blows my mind and the characters are amazing! Be sure to check it out!

No one knows who built the Great Wells across the world or why. To linger near makes the skin crawl and the mind drift in nightmares. Yet this one calls to Ash in whispers that pull her closer. Soon she’s caught in a mystery that can kill. She must find the answers before she loses her sanity and her life.

If you like dragons, magic, and a fierce heroine with a wounded heart, then you’ll love Well of Ash, a YA Fantasy novella by Elle Cardy. Available now as an ebook and paperback on Amazon. OR, for a limited time, pick up a free copy when you join Elle’s VIP newsletter club.

November 4 question - Albert Camus once said, “The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself.” Flannery O’Conner said, “I write to discover what I know.” Authors across time and distance have had many reasons to write. Why do you write what you write?

Well, I'm not sure Bloo Moose is going to save civilization, but I love the quote!

I've always been a reader and I've "told" stories in my head since I was very small. I was too shy/awkward to share and didn't actually write any of them down until well after my own kids were born.

Once I wrote my first story (a really angsty Star Trek TNG story with all kinds of equality themes going on) I realized that creating the stories was fun. And (strangely) going through the story to make it better was fun too. Learning the craft proved to be fun as well.

I wrote my first short story because the prompt intrigued me. This became my first published story (Until Release in the Tick Tock IWSG anthology) and it gave me the confidence to get my work out there.

Dancing With Dementia was written because dementia had crashed into my family and writing about it helped me process it all in the hopes of helping others.

My Bloo Moose series is contemporary romantic suspense. Reaching For Christmas releases on Tuesday and it will be book 5, I'm working on book 7 for NaNo. I write in this genre because it's all about overcoming obstacles within ourselves and teaming up to take on another obstacle. And Hope. My books are always about Hope. 

So, I guess my rather convoluted answer is that I write because it's fun, it helps me process life and it gives me hope for the future.

How about you? Anyone else start off with Fan Fiction? Anyone write to help process their lives or to bring hope into your own? Or are you out to save civilization? We need that!

I'm also visiting with the amazing Denise Covey today talking about rapid release. Hope to see you there!