Monday, April 21, 2014

A week or so ago, I was cruising through the Girls Heart Books Tour site, and saw THIS beauty. Which means I had to sign up and share it with all of you! Plus, the author is an incredibly sweet woman, which makes me even happier to share her with the world. Check out Running in the Dark!

Running in the Dark
Series- Book # 1
By- Inger Iversen
Publication Date- April 19th, 2014
Published By- Crushing Hearts Black Butterfly 

Trace’s job has always revolved around death. Trace is a Watcher, a position created assist to the undead to their final resting place without alerting humans of the vampire race. Whether his job is to witness the death of a fellow vampire or deal it, Trace has learned that being a Grim Reaper isn’t what he thought it would be. After years of killing, he’s ready for a new job, a new life, or to just disappear. When Bessina becomes his new target after she witnesses the death of fellow vampires Sam and Hope, Trace is ready to eliminate her—until a strange course of events turns the tables and has Trace protecting Bessina from his boss and running for his life.


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. 


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, 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. :)