Friday, 29 August 2014

How I Spent My Summer Vacation - Pippa's Post

With three little monsters to cater for, the long school summer holiday in the UK usually features a lot of days out. This year we've been to several castles and watched some medieval jousting, went to an airshow at a nearby seaside resort, and spent a few days at the beach. The beach is one of our favourite places to hang out, and while the kids are crazy enough to venture into the chilly British waters, I tend to chill out in a chair and either enjoy the setting or spend a little time writing.


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I'm so lucky with where I live. While going away on actual holiday might come too expensy to do, we have plenty of options for day trips instead. We live on the edge of the historical town of Colchester, full of old building, museums and a castle. Walk half an hour one way, and you're in the town centre. Half and hour the other way and you're out in the countryside and approaching our local zoo. Drive half an hour and you're at the East Anglian coast. It's awesome.















But writing science fiction romance often means my characters don't take the standard form of summer vacation that we might currently know on Earth. While in my debut novel Keir my leading characters take an unexpected break by becoming stranded a tropical island on an alien planet (hmm, wonder where the inspiration for that came from...), my short story Terms & Conditions Apply has a variety of races taking time out on a luxury spacestation.


“Welcome to Venus Ascendant, a Public Grade space station in the Andromedan Galaxy. With our open-to-all policy, any being in the universe can find their perfect R & R, romantic getaway or dangerous liaison at our purpose built resort. The on-board empathic AI Ganesa ensures that anyone coming to Venus Ascendant will find their heart’s desire, with suites that transform from luxurious boudoirs to sunset-lit beaches to dark BDSM dungeons. So come to Venus Ascendant and find exactly what you’re looking for!”



So I'm offering one person the chance to win Terms & Conditions Apply in whatever digital format they need as a little vacation in space. Just tell me where your dream vacation would be if you could pick from any time and place in the whole universe, and leave your email addy in the format name at provider dot com to avoid the spammers. One winner will be chosen at random - no email=no prize. Sorry!

There's also a rafflecopter giveaway for a $50 Amazon Gift Card, “Sponsored by Christina Cole Romance”. Please read the terms and conditions before entry, and good luck! To hop to the main blog post and find the other participants, just click on the image at the top of this post.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Tethered Tour - winner!


The tour for Tethered is over and the giveaway has closed. I'm pleased to announce that the winner of the DNA necklace and $5 Breathless Press gift card as selected by rafflecopter is...

EJ Frost

Huge congrats! In the meantime, a quick reminder that Tethered is still only $2 at my publisher's website HERE until the end of August, to celebrate their fifth birthday. In less than a week my tour for Restless In Peaceville begins (though you can check out a couple of posts about it now at Karen Y Bynum's blog and at the Writer's Nest), and there'll be another giveaway to tempt you with then. Enjoy!



Karen Y Bynum 20th August Why Zombies?!
The Writer's Nest 22nd interview
Dana's YA Bookpile 1st interview
Winter Bayne 3rd Adorable Zombies – This Is Not A Typo
Mark of the Stars 4th The Appeal of Zombies
Paranormal Reads 5th Excerpt
Literature YA Fiction 5th Five things that got me writing teen zombies
Rachel Leigh Smith 6th Five Facts About RIP
Ryan Hill Writes 7th Interview
Liana Brooks 8th How to Date a Zombie
Rise of the Slush 9th Excerpt
Cassandra Page 11th excerpt
Celia Breslin 12th Ten Facts about Zombies
An Author's Quest 14th review
Everyday Fangirl 15th Two Teen Paranormal Inspirations – Why Kids TV Rocks
(Rachel Leigh Smith at mine) 16th
Going From Somebody To Nobody 17th Character interview
YA Readers America 18th Ten Things You might not know from reading the book
Aussie Owned and Read 26th interview


Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Restless In Peaceville - #Release Day! #YA #zombies #paranormal

Lycaon Press
My zombies are finally here! Restless In Peaceville releases today. This one has been a bit of a rollercoaster. From arguing with muse over writing zombies, powering through NaNoWriMo last year with it, then getting a request from the full to working solidly on it for four months from start to submission. But now my adorable zombies are out in the world, waiting for you to fall in love with them like I did. You can hop over to Lindsay and Jane's Views and Reviews HERE to see their book spotlight with an excerpt, or visit the lovely Karen Y Bynum HERE for an explanation on Why The Heck Zombies?! I'll also be doing an interview about Restless In Peaceville at From The Writer's Nest HERE on the 22nd. The official tour starts on the 1st September - pop back then to find out what I'm giving away and why a scifi romance author suddenly started writing about the undead.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Tethered Tour - Final Days #scifi #romance #giveaway

EXCERPT |  GOODREADS
Available at... Breathless Press |
Smashwords | AReBookstrand

Amazon US | Amazon UK

So the tour for Tethered is now winding down, with just four more days to enter the giveaway for the shiny DNA necklace and gift card. Hurry! But you'll have to go visit my hosts to find out about that.

And here they are!

Cate Peace review - 3rd
Kyndra Hatch spotlight - 8th
Liza O'Connor Fears - 9th
Karen Y Bynum Succubi in spaaaaaaaace! - 10th
Liana Brooks Five SF Heroines Who Inspired Mine - 11th
Patty Hammond Creating A Universe - 12th
Celia Breslin The Making of a Kick Ass Heroine - 13th
Samantha Holt excerpt - 13th
Jessica Subject Five Facts about Tethered - 14th
Kristina Stutts A Female SF Icon - 15th
Elle Clouse quickie interview - 15th
SE Gilchrist book spotlight - 16th
Pam Mandingo spotlight and review - 17th
Cassandra Page – 18th
Anna Hackett book spotlight - 19th
Layna Pimentel – 20th
Winter Bayne – 21st
Sonya Clark – 22nd

Don't forget, as well as the giveaway, you can pick up Tethered from my publisher Breathless Press for half price during August, as part of their fifth birthday celebration! Just click on the Breathless Press link under the book cover.


Sunday, 17 August 2014

Happy Fifth Birthday to Keir

Today is a special day. Today is Keir's birthday. He's five. It's been five years since I first sat at my computer, switched on a compilation of The Rasmus, dug out a rather dark and forlorn short story about a man in a dungeon waiting to die, and started writing again. It was a huge turning point in my life. I hadn't written in years, and had hit a real low point. I wasn't sure who or what I was any more. I was proud to be a mum to three children, a wife to my adorable soulmate. But beyond wife and mother, I had lost sight of myself. It was only by writing again and discovering my passion (or rediscovering it) that I really knew what I wanted. I loved to write. It didn't matter so much to me then if it would ever be published - in fact, it was only after completing the first draft of Keir that it even crossed my mind to try getting it published. At that point it was simply enough to write.
And here am, five years later, with my eighth title about to release in just three days. Still writing. Still reeling. I never expected to be here. To be multi-published, with a handful of shiny awards and some nice reviews. Apparently I don't suck at this writing thing. :P
Where will I be in another five years? I really don't know. Maybe I'll be hitting sixteen titles. As for Keir...well, he's not available right now but I hope to have him back out to you next year, with the rest of the series to follow. If you're waiting for the same epiphany I had five years ago, I can only say this. Get writing. Now. And never give up - never surrender!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Wonderland Party Time - #giveaway


Right now my publisher is having a Facebook party to celebrate the release of their Wonderland series of stories. Here are the details:

18 + Adults only please. Join Breathless Press authors as they celebrate. Every half hour starting at 4:30 pm Mountain Standard Time there will be author giveaways, 12 authors total. 

Ivy Bateman - 4:30-5pm (MST)
Shelli Rosewarn -5-5:30pm (MST)
Monica Schroeder - 5:30- 6pm (MST)
Gayl Taylor - 6- 6:30pm (MST)
Kelliea Ashley 6:30-7pm (MST)
Sheri Velarde 7-7:30pm (MST)
Jo March Hosted by Sheri - 7:30-8pm (MST)
Jen Bradlee - 8-8:30pm (MST)
Mia Aeon-Epsilon 8:30-9pm (MST)
Torie James 9-9:30pm (MST)
Rebekah Lewis (posting as Victoria Miller) 9:30-10pm (MST)
Brantwijn Serrah 10-10:30pm (MST)


Go HERE to join the fun!

Saturday, 9 August 2014

#Science #Fiction #Fantasy Saturday #72


Hello, and welcome to my excerpt for this week's #sffsat. I'm continuing with the opening from my upcoming August release - Restless In Peaceville - a YA paranormal novella (think Warm Bodies meets Supernatural in Louisiana). You can read the previous excerpt HERE. My MC Luke is still trying to come to terms with awakening some place he didn't expect...


Around us—well, it's a big gray hall. A really, really huge space, like an aircraft hangar kind of place, only no planes and no doors. In fact, no walls or roof either. The edges just blur into the darkness, as though none of it exists except the floor we're standing on, and I'm not even sure about that. Looking up makes me giddy. You know when you're dizzy from spinning around, and you lay down, but you feel as if you just keep on falling? That. So I don't try it again. I keep my eyes away from the endless line of other people waiting. Instead, I stare at the back of the person in front of me and try not to think about where I am and what may be going on. Because now I have a nasty suspicion about it and what might have happened. My mind scurries away from the thought. This ain't good. 

Restless In Peaceville will be available in all digital formats from Lycaon Press from the 20th August. In the meantime you can check it out on Goodreads HERE or my website HERE, or sign up to my newsletter to get the release announcement. Why not visit the others taking part in Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday by clicking the banner below.

The SFR Brigade Presents #2 - The plot thickens... #scifi #romance


Welcome to another The SFR Brigade Presents, and I'm continuing with Tethered this week. After the bewildering news that she's being assigned the role of co-delegate (read the previous snippet HERE), Tyree is getting some details about why an assassin is suddenly playing at diplomacy...

Several members of the council tsked at her insolence. G'vorek smiled, deepening the vast collection of wrinkles on his thin, seamed face. Like the other ancients, the charcoal black of his skin had faded to gray, giving him a stone-like appearance.
"Your skills are many, and you are perfect for this role," M'roc continued.
"Why?"
"Perhaps you should explain the situation more thoroughly," G'vorek said, his voice like layers of slate sliding over one another.
M'roc clasped her gnarled hands and threw her co-councilor an exasperated glare before looking back at Tyree. "I was about to. The Terrans are once more negotiating their centennial peace treaty with the Tier-vane."
Tyree waved a hand, dismissing the news as unimportant.
"Perhaps you'd be less indifferent if I told you there have been three assassination attempts on the co-delegates? According to tradition, once the delegates on both sides have been chosen, no others may substitute. It would be taken as a sign of deception. An attempt at trickery."

"I didn't know that," Tyree murmured, but she was more interested in the revelation about the assassination attempts. Whoever had committed those attacks couldn't have been Inc-Su. It would never have taken three tries, and all of them failures. If it had—and it would be a first in their history—was that why she was being assigned? Somehow three Inc-Su had failed, and now they were sending her?

To read more, you can click on EXCERPT or GOODREADS on the image below, or follow the buy links to read snippets or the opening pages (pssst, Breathless Press have a 50% off sale right now for the whole of August, so you can pick up Tethered for just $2!). Check out the other participants in The SFR Brigade Presents by clicking on the badge at the top of the post. Enjoy!
EXCERPT |  GOODREADS
Available at... Breathless Press |
Smashwords | ARe | Bookstrand
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Monday, 4 August 2014

Tethered Tour - Mark 2 #giveaway #scifi #romance

EXCERPT |  GOODREADS
Available at... Breathless Press |
Smashwords | AReBookstrand

Amazon US | Amazon UK

So here we go - the second part of my tour for Tethered, and this time there's a rafflecopter giveaway for a pretty awesome little shiny. But you'll have to go visit my hosts to find out about that. And here they are!

Cate Peace review - 3rd
Kyndra Hatch spotlight - 8th
Liza O'Connor Fears - 9th
Karen Y Bynum Succubi in spaaaaaaaace! - 10th
Liana Brooks Five SF Heroines Who Inspired Mine - 11th
Patty Hammond Creating A Universe - 12th
Celia Breslin The Making of a Kick Ass Heroine - 13th
Samantha Holt excerpt - 13th
Jessica Subject Five Facts about Tethered - 14th
Kristina Stutts A Female SF Icon - 15th
Elle Clouse quickie interview - 15th
SE Gilchrist book spotlight - 16th
Pam Mandingo spotlight and review - 17th
Cassandra Page – 18th
Anna Hackett – 19th
Layna Pimentel – 20th
Winter Bayne – 21st
Sonya Clark – 22nd

Don't forget, as well as the giveaway, you can pick up Tethered from my publisher Breathless Press for half price during August, as part of their fifth birthday celebration! Just click on the Breathless Press link under the book cover.


Sunday, 3 August 2014

Happy Birthday?

Today I turn 43. While I no longer make a big deal about my birthdays and don't expect anyone else to, I still like to mark the occasion with at least a cake and a few cards. But this birthday is different. Not outwardly perhaps, but in my head.
My mum died when she was 43. It's not something I talk about much. I was nineteen at the time, and I'm not going to dwell over the impact it had on me. But since I first approached the landmark of 40, turning my life on its head as it came, the memory has been preying on my mind. I don't expect to mysteriously keel over on the day, but I can't forget.
Mum was ill for several years beforehand, and I've not experienced anything that I foresee as potentially fatal. Well, except for some freaky symptoms back in the autumn of 2012 that turned out to be chronic, long term anaemia. I have no reason to believe that my family is under any kind of curse that would compel me to die. I intend to live forever, bwahahaaa! Lol. But just for once, I will be looking forward to being another year older next year when I turn 44. In fact, I have a thing for the number 4, so 44 will be a very pleasing age to be.
And perhaps it's partly why approaching 40 made me realize it was finally time to do those things I really wanted to do, because none of us know how long we have on this planet. So even though I've been anxious about being 43, I've looked back over the last few years, at what I've done and what I hope still to do, and I'm happy. I've achieved things I never imagined in the last few years. But I'm not prepared to quite give up the whole breathing and moving around thing yet. :P Here's to being another year older!


Saturday, 2 August 2014

#Science #Fiction #Fantasy Saturday #71


Hello, and welcome to my excerpt for this week's #sffsat. Long time, no see, huh? For my return I'm sharing the opening sentences from my upcoming August release - Restless In Peaceville - a YA paranormal novella (think Warm Bodies meets Supernatural in Louisiana). Here, my MC Luke is trying to come to terms with awakening some place he didn't expect...

Where the hell am I?
Not the most original question, I know, but it's the best place to start. The only place. I don't know where I am. I can't remember where I was. What I was. But nothing about this place is familiar, and some part of me didn't expect this.
There's a line of people all the way to infinity. I'm not exaggerating—I do mean infinity. And it hurts to look at it because the human mind can't handle that. Not completely. You think you know how that looks? You don't. You can't. 


Restless In Peaceville will be available in all digital formats from Lycaon Press from the 20th August. In the meantime you can check it out on Goodreads HERE or my website HERE, or sign up to my newsletter to get the release announcement. Why not visit the others taking part in Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday by clicking the banner below.

The SFR Brigade Presents #1 - You want me to be a what?! #scifi #romance


Hello, welcome to this week's round of The SFR Brigade Presents! Would you believe this is only the first time I've taken part?! Crazy. So I'm sharing an excerpt from my new #scifi #romance Tethered, and my heroine isn't impressed with her new assignment...

Tyree spun on her heels, her long hair lashing around her as she faced the council. "You want me to be a what?"
Thirteen elderly Inc-Su met her scream of outrage with angry stares. The last syllable echoed around the chamber. If sound could penetrate metaglass, it would have scattered the saurian lowri gliding past the panoramic windows on membranous wings.
Tyree swore G'vorek, one of her former mentors, winked at her, and her irritation eased a fraction at his silent support. Some of the other council members shifted in their hover seats as she cast her gaze over them. Several scowled. Beyond the oval table and the council members, clouds drifted past the window obscuring the slender sky towers of Refuge, a serene background that conflicted with the turmoil suddenly seething in her chest.
"I didn't think the phrase 'co-delegate' would be considered such an offensive term even by you, Tyree," Great Mother M'roc said.
Tyree latched her attention onto the matriarch. Unlike the majority of the Inc-Su, M'roc had a generous, matronly figure and caramel-colored skin. Dark braids tinted with gray framed her broad face. There was a saying among the Inc-Su, twisted from the old Terran phrase—as solid as M'roc. Unbending, reliable, consistent, and strong. Good traits in a leader, but it meant once she'd made a decision, nothing could change her mind. If she'd chosen this role for Tyree...
"I'm an assassin, not a frigging diplomat," Tyree retorted, but the initial fire of her resistance had guttered. Arguing already felt like a lost cause, but she had to make the point. 


To read more, you can click on EXCERPT or GOODREADS on the image below, or follow the buy links to read snippets or the opening pages (pssst, Breathless Press have a 50% off sale right now for the whole of August!). Check out the other participants in The SFR Brigade Presents by clicking on the badge at the top of the post. Enjoy!

EXCERPT |  GOODREADS
Available at... Breathless Press |
Smashwords | AReBookstrand

Amazon US | Amazon UK