Thursday, April 17, 2014

So I've officially started work on Alacrity, which is releasing on May 20th, and of course that means that once again, I'm going to put myself through the meat-grinder of emotional tailspins. The highs, the lows, and everything in-between. Figured it would be kind of funny to give you all a visual of the sort of roller-coaster I ride when I write a book, just so, you know, you can laugh when you realize which one I'm on when I announce projects as they progress.

Just FYI- This is totally how I handle book writing. As always, it might not be the same way for everyone else. It might be exactly the same and we might be twins separated at birth. Possible, yes?

Level One: Shiny! New! Must write down ALL THE THINGS!


Writers, you know this feeling. You're wandering down the cereal aisle, debating on if you really want Chex or Trix because heck, you haven't had cereal in months, and then it hits you. Like a shopping cart to the ankles, a glass jar slipping off the top shelf and slapping you on the head. Characters blossom to life in your head in seconds, scenes and motives and plot pieces to a story you dream of in this wild rush. It's better than any food, any drug you could imagine. And it overrides your brain so fast, you short circuit. This is why we look half-dazed all the time, guys. It's not because we never sleep (I mean, that's part of it) but it's because we're constantly waiting for that next jump of a story.

But until that new shiny story comes, you tackle the one you've just created. So what if it sounds kind of cliche? So what if you have a book on deadline due in eight hours and you're only halfway done with the final draft? So what if you haven't done laundry in a week, showered in two, or remembered to feed the cat in a month? Actually, please remember to feed your pets. Those are kind of important.

Level Two: Instant Regret

Let's be honest with ourselves, shall we? Writers, we're not robots. Repeat after me: We. Are. Not. Robots. As much as every fan wants to think we just have laptops glued to our hips all day, and we sit in tea and coffee shops nursing cups of hot love between our chilled fingers as we figure out why the villain wants to kidnap the heroine again, we don't. We totally don't. Which is why, when we take on a new project, it's all sunshine and rainbows for all of five seconds. 



Then reality hits. By the time you've already found yourself head over heels in love with a character and dived head-first into a project with hours of time devoted to it, you look back at the dozen plus manuscripts you need to finish for agents and publication and publishing houses, and the cramping in your stomach start. You reach for bottles of Pepto like some people see shrinks. Why? Because you need the relief from the fact that, yet again, you've bitten off more than you can chew. 

And it's not your fault. Really, it isn't! We just love these ideas so much, and want to write all the things that spin through our brain (I'm still working on a duo Warlock story that's nearly a year in the making, guys. A YEAR. IN THE. MAKING.) that we forget we made commitments to other things before that. Those story ideas are like shiny lures, and we're hungry fish. Don't bite… don't bite… and suddenly you're on a boat getting gutted and served for dinner with steamed broccoli. 

Level Three: Wait, I've got this. Right? 


By the time we hit the middle of a project, it's roughly around this stage that you hit those funny forks in the road. On one side, it's bliss. A bold, shaded paradise in the desert that entices you with water and fresh fruit and all the sorbet you can eat. I mean, it's that good. You love the story. You love the plot, the characters, the flow; it all meshes like it was meant to be. Of course it does! Because it was meant to be. We say so.

On the other side, though, it's a little less friendly. It's hot, dry and lonely. Nothing but sand and solitude in the middle of no where. You're pretty sure if you continue down this path, they'll find you on an archeological dig in another thousand years. This is the path you feel yourself on when the book flat out sucks. The plot is weak and falls apart, well, like sand in your fingers. The characters are so annoying, you just want to kill them off for the mercy. Don't even mention the flow of the book, it's laughable at best. It's stiff and stagnant. Boring. You can hear the reviews now if you ever take it publication. "Held great promise, until I tried to get through the writing. So. Boring." So you grab a bucket of popcorn, slather some melted chocolate on top, and swallow a few mouthfuls. 

Somehow, we manage to jump between these two trails like we play hopscotch for a living. It's incredibly frustrating. These are the nights you'll find an author wide awake at 5AM, clutching a seventh cup of tea while sitting in the dining room, shaking from the idea of ever writing another word of this awful piece, but too far in to turn back. 

Level Four: Mystery unraveled! It all makes sense!



Just when you think it's all over, and you have to trash a project you thought was going to be the next novel on your list, it hits you all over again on the head. You practically shove your face through the monitor when you realize what's been staring you in the face all along!

Suddenly you don't have to consider throwing away all those precious pieces you've created. Sure, you might need to re-work a few scenes, skip some pieces you originally loved, and probably have to kill off a character or two in the name of plot progression, but it's okay. You worked out the huge knot that was holding you back, the staleness that made you cringe just thinking about reading it. Your fingers fly across the keys. Any author knows this is the part where you start to cackle under you breath in those coffee or tea shops, marveled at your crazed little characters. Of course people stare. So what? Let 'em. You're writing the next big thing, baby. 

Level Five: Survival of the Fittest

All too soon, it's over. Like smoke clearing from a battlefield, you finally take your eyes away from the screen, and a weird sensation takes over. 

What is it? Satisfaction. 


Sure, it might not last more than a few days, but that's okay. That's what writing is about. You took a story from a conception to a full-fledged idea, scrambled through the messy middle where everything fell apart, pulled it back together, and saved the day. That's real hero work right there. So put the draft away, sit back in a chair and sip some tea or wine or whatever tickles your fancy. You deserve it.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to pull myself out of level three. This book has promise, I just… you know, can't see it yet. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

It's time! Oh holy crap, it's finally time! Cue the party gifs!






It's been nearly a year since I first announced A Shard of Ice publicly, and since then, I've basically been sitting here, twiddling my thumbs and freaking out at least three times a day over the fact that eventually, all of you were going to read it. If you think an author gets over this, the answer is no. We go into these incredible spazzes worthy of YouTube gold.

And now here we are, a year later and another book out. This one is, by far, both my favorite book to have written and my favorite book to share with all of you. There's just so much in it that pulls from who I am. Lilix was a character I had created in Middle School, and she stuck with me after all that time, insistent on having her own story. I kept putting it aside for Essallie and Kayden, but she wouldn't quit nagging me, not until I wrote down her story. That was all it took, and from there, A Shard of Ice was born. 

Well, it's out there now, and there's no going back. Which means I'm going to sit here, and try really hard not to freak out at the impending reviews, comments, and more. But really, I'm going to compulsively look for mentions of it anywhere. It's going to be hilarious and a little sad all at the same time. I wonder if my local B&N will mind if I just start camping out in the Teen section… 

But I'm rambling! Go forth, devour A Shard of Ice! Tell me why you loved it, why you hated it, who drove you insane, who made you feel like you made a new best friend! Create hilarious reviews that use gifs showing how utterly insane you were driven over the book. Jam out to the playlist of A Shard of Ice as soon as I upload it on a new blog post. Or not. But definitely grab it, read it, share it, explore the story Lilix wanted the world to read. 

Right now, you can grab the paperback or hardback off of Amazon. Barnes & Noble's website should have the book up within the day. As for the ebook, I'm being told it might not be until the 17th that it'll go live. I know, it's lame as hell. But as soon as it DOES go up, I'll edit this blog post to include the link, and probably spam-tweet/Facebook it for everyone, soooo. 


Wednesday, April 2, 2014

I have a confession; I've been a little whacky and a whole lot of insane. 

Okay, so that isn't really much of a confession, but here is a confession; I've been stashing some last-minute 'sekrit' news from all of you. I'm sorry, really I am! It's not like I don't like being on Facebook, or Twitter, or Blogger, or anywhere on the internet or in person where I run into people and chat and tell lame jokes that people seem to enjoy laughing at. It's because there's only twelve (12!!!) days until A Shard of Ice comes out, and I'm doing this sad little thing called last-minute-why-do-I-do-this-to-myself edits. Between sleeping on the couch, cooking breakfast at all hours to stay alive and fed, and forgetting to shower, my week has sort of looked like this…



"But why did you wait until the last minute to edit this mammoth book, Alivia? Do you really enjoy torturing yourself like this, so close to a deadline?"

I'm sure at least one of you (other than my family and friends) is thinking that right now. Honestly, it's a ying-yang sort of answer. One one hand, I thrive under pressure in ways I cannot express. Magic just sort of spills from my brain. I can't explain it, but I can tell you it certainly helped me graduate High School. 

But right now I'm sort of regretting it. Because I've been spending nearly every hour awake, on a computer, frying my eyeballs in the name of making sure Lilix's story is clear, strong, and flows well. 

So yeah. There's that. But yes, I did have all winter to do this. And technically it should have been done back in February when I was supposed to have these stinkin' edits finished. It's a long story as to why none of that happened, one that involves a near-ER trip for a sinus infection, dropping nearly forty (yes, 40) pounds in less than a month, and realizing I had to change something or die, but I'll save the details for that for another blog post. 

ANYWAY. 

So the good news first, then a giveaway winner second!

Good news? Ahhh, yes. The news I'm super crazy excited to tell you all about involves that shiny new book, A Shard of Ice, that releases in 12 days. Pre-orders for the paperback and hardback have been up for a while now, and I've been able to see a bunch of you guys grabbing the hardback (which, by the way, makes me feel INCREDIBLE. It's the cover, isn't it? That shiny cover totally pulled you in.) and a few of you picking up the paperback, too. 

Well, if you've been on the fence for buying a hard copy because you just have to read the book the day it releases, hop over to the dark side. JOIN US. Why? Because if you pre-order any hard copy of the book, paperback OR hardback by April 10th, and email proof to redalicepress@gmail.com, you'll get an ebook copy the day of the release. So it's like buying a hard copy and ebook at the same time! How freaking cool is that?! It's all included in the tab labeled PRE-ORDER, so click that for the details!

And lastly, a giveaway winner announcement from the masquerade pendant and signed copy of ASOI from Facebook! Hold onto your hats…


Chelle H., do as the picture says, or else. You're the wicked winner of that sweet pendant and signed book!


Alright, that's it, I'm out. These edits aren't going to do themselves. Until later. :)

Monday, March 31, 2014

It's another cover reveal on the blog today! Last week, you all got to see the shiny new cover for the first two books in Jennifer Armentrout's Lux Series, well today is going to be a double-whammy on the cover reveal list. Why? Because Entangled gave the cover you saw last week a teeny-tiny facelift, and WOAH. Talk about making the cover POP even more!

Here's the cover to THE LUX SERIES: BEGINNINGS… 



The Lux Series: Beginnings
Special Edition includes both Obsidian and Onyx (Books 1 & 2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: June 3rd, 2014



Blurb:
Obsidian

There's an alien next door. And with his looming height and eerie green eyes, he's hot...until he opens his mouth. He's infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, he lights me up with a big fat bulls-eye. Turns out he has a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal his abilities and the only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to him until my alien mojo fades. If I don’t kill him first, that is.

Onyx

Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarro alien connection. So I’ve sworn him off, even though he’s running more hot than cold these days. But we’ve got bigger problems. I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. And I have to tell Daemon, even though I know he’s never going to stop searching until he gets the truth. What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me?

And here is the NEW cover reveal for THE LUX SERIES: CONSEQUENCES!




The Lux Series: Consequences
Special Edition includes both Obsidian and Onyx (Books 3 & 4)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: June 3rd, 2014
GoodReads - Amazon - Barnes & Noble

Blurb:
Opal
After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different... And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing alien hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable. The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back. Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever.
Origin
Daemon will do anything to get Katy back. After the successful but disastrous raid on Mount Weather, he’s facing the impossible. Katy is gone. Taken. Everything becomes about finding her. But the most dangerous foe has been there all along, and when the truths are exposed and the lies come crumbling down, which side will Daemon and Katy be standing on? And will they even be together?  


So who is excited for this?! I mean, I liked the new covers to begin with, but with the new font on these bad boys, it just… really makes it, know what I mean? Kind of like adding whipped cream to a slice of pie; it just makes it so much BETTER!

Not to mention, I believe I see a Pepe in the second cover for you true-blue fans like myself… can you spot him? Is it him?



About the Author: 

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer Armentrout lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell, Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen.

She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.




In honor of the cover reveal, Jennifer is also giving away two fan-art inspired pieces of the Lux Series! How cool is that?! Massive props to the makers of the fan-art! 

Don't forget to enter. ;) 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, March 24, 2014

Finally! I've been staring at this cover in my inbox since yesterday, waiting for the minute I could share it with all of you. Super props to Entangled Publishing for letting me help out with this massive reveal! 


The Lux Series: Beginnings
Special Edition includes both Obsidian and Onyx (Books 1 & 2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: June 3rd, 2014



Blurb:
Obsidian

There's an alien next door. And with his looming height and eerie green eyes, he's hot...until he opens his mouth. He's infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, he lights me up with a big fat bulls-eye. Turns out he has a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal his abilities and the only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to him until my alien mojo fades. If I don’t kill him first, that is.

Onyx

Daemon’s determined to prove what he feels for me is more than a product of our bizarro alien connection. So I’ve sworn him off, even though he’s running more hot than cold these days. But we’ve got bigger problems. I’ve seen someone who shouldn’t be alive. And I have to tell Daemon, even though I know he’s never going to stop searching until he gets the truth. What happened to his brother? Who betrayed him? And what does the DOD want from them—from me?

About the Author: 


# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer Armentrout lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell, Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen.

She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.




In honor of the cover reveal, Jennifer is also giving away two fan-art inspired pieces of the Lux Series! How cool is that?! Massive props to the makers of the fan-art! 

Don't forget to enter. ;) 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Phew, finally I can upload this blog post! 

I've managed to sit on some fanfabulouslytastic news for… about 16 hours, give or take a few, and now I can share the flippity good news worthy of all the celebration gifs in the world. But first, I have the winner of the huge signed swag and book set from Facebook to announce! 


Yay Sue! Do me the most awesomest favor ever and email me ASAP so I can ship your goodies out pronto! 

And now, to the other news I can't contain any more. A few of you might know already because I just had to message you with my freakish glee, but to those of you who don't…

Pack your bags, and haul some booty to Nashville this June, because I'm going to be at UtopYA 2014! 






Yes, yes yes yes yes YES! By the stroke of luck, this girl managed to land a table space as an exhibitor for this year's UtopYA Con. Which means I will be bringing books, oh so many books. And special goodies only for UtopYA peeps that may include special bookmarks, a sneak peek to the fifth book in the Illumine Series, a sneak peek to the second book in the Black Symphony Saga, possibly advanced copies of Kayden's novella… 

You get the point, right? This is going to be HUGE. You must, MUST, come along and bring your happy smiling shining faces for all the things I am planning! But if not, I'll take pictures, lots of pictures, but it's so not the same as being there and getting to know all the amazing authors I will be honored to share company with for those few short days. 

Keep your eyes peeled, I'm a freight train running full speed ahead for this event, and the couple other singings I will be at this year! Don't forget I do local signing in the Quakertown area of PA for both Arts Alive! in May, and Autumn Alive! in October. Plus, I am attending a signing in Phillipsburg, NJ on March 22nd for those around that area. 

That's all for now! I need to get back to the writing cave. All those books, so little time. Totally doable. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Yar. You read that right, matey. Head ter shore for and find the hidden chest, for thar be where the booty rest!

(I'm only talking like a pirate because apparently I'm like Captain Hook from Once Upon a Time, or so says some Facebook quiz. Kind of digging it. Might rock some eyeliner and write a pirate novel for giggles. Kidding. Sort of?)



Last week, I promised all you scoundrels a post on all the release schedules and details on each book releasing in 2014. And of course, if you were hanging out on my Facebook page last night, you'd know I also promised a chance to win some more of those neat little collector cards for A Shard of Ice, the very same ones that have a unique website on the back to an upcoming website for the new series. 

So I thought, why not put the two together? Yar? YAR! 

So without further adieu, here's a release schedule with details you can sink yer teeth into;

February 17th - An Ice Princess Kiss: A Shard of Ice Novella #2
- This one has been pushed back twice. Once by me being sick, and once by me realizing it needed editing, badly. You think the first draft of Illumine was bad (it was, it really was) you did not want to read this in the state it was. February 17th it will release (finally) and you'll get to read so much more than the first draft carried.

SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads): The first time Lilix Morgan met Kyle Ambrose, she knew her life would never be the same. Captivated by his gentle charm and curious itch to know about her shrouded past, she struggles to keep him at arm's length before he discovers her true nature. But when a power outside force seeks to end Kyle's life, Lilix may have to do more than reveal herself if it means saving his soul.

March 4th - An Ice Princess Symphony: A Shard of Ice Novella #3
- Following the second novella, this one I had to re-work a little bit, so it was pushed back twice, too, for the same reasons. A lot more was added to this one, giving readers a chance to see not just who Lilix is, but also see the other four primary characters that haven't had much time yet. 

SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads):  Nearly a year has passed since the events that transpired between the five Originals in Ice Princess Kiss, and Lilix is still no closer to finding their missing link than the day she began to look. One evening while returning home, she stumbles across a girl in the street, a girl who cannot remember the last year, only the frightening knowledge that she was held captive by an immortal enemy Lilix had thought long dead.

March 25th - An Ice Princess Dream: A Shard of Ice Novella #4
- Still on schedule as planned! 

SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads): When Lilix begins to experience frightening nightmares of their tragic deaths, she races against the clock to save them all from a final fate. But the unlikely turning of someone closest to her will put all five of them in jeopardy in ways she never thought possible. 

April 14th - A Shard of Ice (The Black Symphony Saga #1)
- I have been getting asked a ton about ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) for this book, both in paperback and ebook (and some in hardback), so I'm here to let you all know what is up with that. I will have a really tight number of paperback ARCS, and they will be going strictly to bloggers who agree to review and sign up for the ASOI Blog Tour that will be running all April. Readers have the chance to win two ARCs currently on Goodreads here, and I will probably have one more to give out with a signed swag pack mid-February, but that will be it. No hardback ARCs. Ebook ARCs will also only be given to bloggers who agree to review and sign up for the ASOI Blog Tour. The sign-up sheet for the A Shard of Ice Blog Tour will go up in a blog post at the end of this week; bloggers are encouraged to sign-up immediately if they want to be considered for an ARC, but more details on all of that will be posted in the blog post this week. 

May 20th - Alacrity (Illumine #4)
- I've been very hush-hush about this until I posted that little teaser picture on Facebook for the new banner, and I still have to be pretty hush-hush, but here's what I can share with you:
1- Alacrity is NOT the final book to the series. 
2- There will be several chapters from Kayden's POV, and it is very important. 
3- Someone to the central point of the plot WILL die.
4- Alacrity will be released with two different covers at the same time.

Two covers?! Yar, two covers, matey. Readers who have the older Illumine style cover with the blue fire and white pendant will be able to continue their series with the same set of covers, and readers just getting into the series with the newest covers courtesy of Mae I Design will be able to collect them steadily as well. I'm not leaving any one hanging on this, promise. 

June 16th - Lucid Echelon (Dream Chronicles #1)
- This is going to be a new, but short, trilogy releasing steadily over the summer. I can't share too much information on this one, either, but what I can tell you is that it involves Elves in a different twist then you typically see, and takes a curious approach to the idea of dreams and how we interact with them. Each book in the series will release one month apart, so readers will be able to devour this series in a very short time with no wait at all. At this time, the second and third book do not have titles, and will be released July 17th and August 18th, respectively. 

November 17th - Untitled (Illumine #5)
- Yes, you're reading that right. Six months after Alacrity, the newest book in the Illumine Series will release. It is NOT a novella, and it is NOT a spin-off novel; it is a full-length novel following what happens in Alacrity continuing with the center cast. 

December 12th - The Unwanted (Unwanted #1)
- I know, I know. What about Unwanted, it released in July, right? Well, yes and no. Some of you might have noticed, but Unwanted was pulled from all areas shortly after release. To make a very painful story short, I didn't think it was ready, the story is a little out of my element for my pen name of Alivia Anders, and it was more than a stand-alone. I decided to take this back to the drawing board, work on it a little bit, and re-publish it under a separate pen name called Silver Roxen. I'm not going to hide the pen name, I'm just not going to tie it directly to my Teen YA writing because the divide is so great, a lot of readers were confused by the obvious difference in style and reader level. Expect to see this in December. 


Looking back, that's a heck of a lot of think about in the near future. But hey, it'll be so worth it, right? Now, you made it this far, and I promised some Shard of Ice cards, right? 

This time, I have 50 cards to give out for US and INT! 

This is what you need to do to get one of those cards:
Go to Facebook (specifically here) and read the pinned post! 

Now off with ye! Walk the plank! Swab the poop deck! Why is the rum always gone? Oh right, because I found this scalliwag on me way out of port...