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Monday, April 29, 2013

Seeing Ghosts Cover Reveal

Seeing Ghosts Blurb

Paul Herrera finds himself bequeathed a mysterious old house near the California central coast by a deceased aunt he never knew. The woman who shows it to him is the spitting image of his wife, taken from him three years before in a senseless car accident which also took his unborn son. While he deals with the ghosts of a past he cannot let go, there are new ghosts Paul must deal with - alone for the week in the expansive two-story house that he will soon discover holds many secrets. Eventually, he will see that he is surrounded by ghosts as he struggles to hold onto the only thing that he has left in this world - his sanity.

Well, Fire Enthusiasts, what do you think? After many years of reading and writing predominately horror fiction, I have taken the plunge and entered the paranormal romance waters. You may be surprised to learn that I’m more comfortable in this genre. I look forward to unleashing this new book upon you and seeing what you think.

I started writing the first draft of what would become Seeing Ghosts early last year. I finally felt ready to write a haunted house story after delaying the prospect for a long time. I really did not want to chart old and tired waters, but wanted to do something that I felt was fresh and exciting. I hope you’ll find that it is.

Although the story is mine, I owe a great debt to the wonderful and talented Maria Zannini for really bringing the book to life. I’m one of those who judge the book by the cover, so every hand, virtual or otherwise, that reaches for this book will be doing so because of Maria’s fantastic talents.

Seeing Ghosts is scheduled for release on June 5th. I will begin sending out invites to the Facebook Event Page, but please feel free to invite yourselves now and share this with your like-minded friends. I’d be honored if you would.

My thanks to all who have supported and encouraged me along the journey to this point; thanks for taking this ride with me.

We’ll talk soon.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Another Week, Another Cover Reveal

Greetings, Fire Enthusiasts. I hope you're well. As the title indicates, this is week two of a three week stretch where I'll be revealing covers. If you missed last week, I revealed the new cover that we have put on my debut novel, Dance on Fire. That's my crossover vampire series where I explore whether a vampire can actually be used for good or not. This week I'm revealing the cover that we've just put on book two in that series. So with no further delay:

So, what do you think? A bit more professional looking? That, of course, means no disrespect to the good folks who worked very hard on the original covers. I just felt that I should really put in the effort and the finances necessary to convey a more professional look for my work. Each of my first two novels have received good reviews. They just haven't had the largest reach as of yet, and I hope these covers help them achieve that.

Next week, at long last, we will finally be revealing the cover for my newest book, Seeing Ghosts. I use the word "we" because many of my wonderful friends have kindly volunteered to become involved in this reveal. With any luck, the cover will be blanketed all over the Internet in the days and weeks ahead as we move toward the June release date. For those of you out there who don't mind a bit of horror, but much prefer a paranormal slant, you're in luck because that's just what I'm bringing you this summer. What's that? You like a bit of romance, too? Well then, such the better. Seeing Ghosts should be paranormal at its best - and include just enough romance to please everyone.

The synopsis: Five years after the death of their only child Tiffany, Steve and Angie Rosen receive an unexpected guest to their Morro Bay, California home: their daughter. She comes with a tale of having suffered a terrible head wound in the fire that took their Kingsburg home, causing her loss of memory and migraine headaches that force her to hide from daylight in order to prevent. Tiffany's reemergence is treated like Manna from Heaven; however, her story is only half true. Tiffany is a vampire and their daughter in name only. She sleeps during the day and hunts for human blood during the night, and has come back to enact a twisted revenge upon those who ruined the plans of her master, the notorious vampire, Vincent. And she is not alone.

Five years after the terrible events that reshaped the Swedish Village, Kingsburg lies unsuspecting as five vampires descend upon her with a great evil in their black hearts.
Five years after old wounds have finally healed and the old fires were thought extinguished, Police Chief Michael Lopez and Officer Mark Jackson and their families find themselves surrounded when fires blaze anew. The good vampire, Nathaniel, has pledged his service to these people, but he is no longer among them. He lives high in the Oregon Mountains near the California border, seeking whether God might have a place in His kingdom yet for him.

When Nathaniel discovers that Tiffany has returned, will he be too late to stop her? And will his desire to protect his friends destroy what God has begun in him?

When Nathaniel discovers that Tiffany has returned, will he be too late to stop her? And will his desire to protect his friends destroy what God has begun in him?

It will all begin with a Flash Point

I'm not going to take much more of your time here. I'm in the home stretch: Cover is done, Facebook event Page is ready to go and the edits are nearly complete. This week will see me move into the last read-through stage and then formatting for Kindle. You see, well in advance of the release date I will have the book up and ready to be sent out into the world for reviews. Speaking of that, if any of you do that sort of thing and have an opening, please let me know. I would love to send you a copy when its ready.

Alright, my friends. Have a great week. I'll get back to blog visits as soon as I finish all this work.

We'll talk soon.

Monday, April 15, 2013

A Brand New Cover for Dance on Fire

Hello, Fire Enthusiasts. I come to you this week with what will be the first of three cover reveals in a row, all created by author and cover artist extraordinaire Maria Zannini. This week, I present to you a new cover for an old favorite. Dance on Fire has a new cover that I think better exemplifies the story within. It is horror, but at it's heart is so much more. It's getting good reviews, and I hope this new vision of the book will help catch the attention of a much wider audience. With no further delay, here's the cover:

Speaking of reviews, I just received this one a few days ago from author Tracy Krauss: "This is definitely NOT your typical vampire tale. ...The book is written from an omniscient point of view, so we often see inside the heads of more than one person at a time. It doesn't distract, though, like head hopping might normally do. For some reason it seems to work and I think helps us have more sympathy for the victims. If you enjoy paranormal tales, you will like this book."

Another glimpse into the fire:

Perhaps the tiny girl could sense the terrible evil which stood over her crib, perhaps not. However, as Vincent leaned closer to get a better look, she began to wail and wriggle much stronger than before. Unfortunately for the little girl, Mommy wasn't listening, nor could she do the littlest thing about it.
The vampire reached into the crib and retrieved the frightened young infant. Had she been a fish, he would have lost her as the baby tried to get away from the form that she somehow knew was most definitely not family, and certainly not Mommy. He held the child high above his head. Behind his purple lips, gleaming fangs hungrily protruded from the corner of his mouth. Slowly, confidently, they pierced the air between them on their way toward the baby's warm, vibrating little throat.
The vampire has heightened senses: taste, smell, touch, sight and hearing. All five are far more highly tuned to his world around him than that of his victims. He has better vision than that of a hungry eagle in search of a morsel from high above the forest. He can smell the presence of human beings faster than the deer can smell a mediocre hunter. Not only can the vampire hear a pin drop, but he can recognize the disturbance in the molecules as the pin slices its way through the air toward the ground. In fact, just one of these senses makes it impossible for the vampire to be taken by surprise.
Except by another vampire.
Therefore, when Nathaniel suddenly came out of nowhere and swept the baby from his hands, knocking him into the far wall in the same motion; he actually let out a cry of surprise.
Nathaniel replaced the baby in her crib and with but a touch quickly pushed the piece of furniture safely behind him.
“Nicely done, Nathaniel. I wondered when you might show yourself,” he added quietly, stepping away from the wall and running both of his hands through his long hair in order to get it out of his face. “ClichĂ©, I know, but I taught you very well, indeed.”
“You taught me only to hate. And I hate you very much.”
Vincent sighed, and then took a threatening step forward.
“Remain where you are, Vincent!” Nathaniel commanded. “These are under my charge.”
“Oh, but Nathaniel, surely you don't think me gluttonous. I will gladly share them with you.”
Nathaniel made no effort to respond.
“Ah, but that is right,” he quickly interjected. “You don't feed on human blood, do you, Nathaniel? Such a pity. Cats and vermin!” he said with a dramatic shudder. “It makes you considerably weaker than I, you realize. In that instance, I guess I will have both!”
“No!” Nathaniel stood his ground.
“I will not be ordered around, Nathaniel,” Vincent said firmly, taking another step forward.
Nathaniel said nothing and made no effort to withdraw.
Two telephones began to ring in other rooms. No one acknowledged the ringing.
Vincent stopped. “Ah, you mean to challenge me. I adore challenges. It has been a challenge, my finding you. It has been a challenge following a cold trail across the globe.” Vincent stepped closer. “And now that I have you…” He stared his adversary down, menacingly. A moment later he reached out delicately with his left hand and lovingly moved a stray hair out of Nathaniel’s face. He whispered: “And I do have you, Nathaniel.” He lowered his hand back to his side and changed his expression again, this time to a look of intimidation. Then, he shook it off again.
“Just go, Vincent,” Nathaniel said, placing his hands on the back of the little baby's crib. In the background, the phones continued to ring. “It is still early. I trust you have more than enough time to acquire for yourself another meal.”
Vincent sighed again and smiled, turning his attention back to the nearest baby. They were each still screaming their lungs out, red-faced panic on their tiny faces. Something in that scene coerced a giggle out of him.
“So lovely!”
He reached down into the nearest crib and gently and tenderly caressed the skin of the baby boy's throat with his ugly discolored fingernail. The infant recoiled at the touch and did his best to move away.
“So warm!”
Vincent pulled the hand away from the baby and then, glancing dramatically into Nathaniel's eyes, stuck the caressing finger into his mouth and licked the scent from it. Down the hall in the kitchen, Barbara’s voice could be heard as the answering machine engaged.
“No more games, Vincent.”
Vincent turned his gaze back upon Nathaniel, his face devoid of expression. He appeared neither pleased nor angered. “It is so good to hear you speak my name again after all of these years.”
“It has been much longer than years.” There was a pregnant pause where Vincent’s name should have followed, but Nathaniel refused to satisfy the monster any further. “And not at all long enough.”

Next week, I'll showcase the new Flash Point cover in like fashion. The week after that will finally see the revealing of my new novel's fabulous cover. As you read this I am taking a break from the social networks and going over the edits for my paranormal romance, Seeing Ghosts. I can't wait to reveal that to you as well. It should be very soon. Dance on Fire can be found on Amazon where the e-book is only 99 cents.

We'll talk soon.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Pushing 200 Blog Posts

Hello, Fire Enthusiasts. Thank you for stopping by for post 199. We're approaching a bit of a milestone, aren't we? Now, I would have been to 200 much sooner had I posted more often; however, I learned a long time ago that with my time constraints I had time only for posting once a week and visiting the sites of others with what little time remained. The other thing is I also don’t offer advice. I never really felt qualified to be doing that. I share what I’ve been up to and where I’ve been – with regard to this writing career; I clue you in on what I’ve been reading, watching or listening to. Really, until I feel the day has come that I deserve a full website, I’ll just use this place. Some will offer that having an official website just conveys how professional one is – and I get that. It just gets back to that time thing…

With hitting this number comes the opportunity to offer giveaways. I think I will do that, but not just yet. There’s simply too much in flux at the moment. The fabulous author/cover artist Maria Zannini is putting the finishing touches on brand new covers for my first two books as we prepare to do the big cover reveal on book three. I would counsel patience in this matter, but I can hardly stand it either. *laughs*

Let’s get back to the issue of time constraints again. This new job I just transferred into has really thrown me. It’s going to be great once I fully settle in, but in the meantime it has blown up my routine. I worked from 7 am to 7 pm my first two days in this gig. I haven’t seen my treadmill since last Tuesday and I have barely touched this laptop. If you don’t catch me prowling about your blogs or hear from me across the social networks – you’ll know why! During the week I barely had time to check my iPhone. I have two more days to work with the outgoing supervisor this week, but then I am on my own. There are so many new things to learn that I feel as if I’m cramming for a big final…

When the new facility becomes smaller in my eyes and I set up my routines, life should be so much better…and you should mercifully hear no further whining from me. *crosses fingers* I pray once we get into the 200's there will be much more discussion over new covers and new interest in my first two crossover vampire books, followed by the release of my Paranormal Romance which I really am excited to present to you, a secret collaborative writing project and much more. Big things are coming. I promise.

I’ve learned quite a lot over these past few years, as I know we all have. There really is so much to learn, isn’t there? On the other hand, it is all so very exciting, too. No matter how successful each of us are, we’re really living the dream.

We are living the dream, aren’t we? And we have made so many new friends to help us celebrate along the way. Thanks, you guys.

We’ll talk soon.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Day Trippin'

Hello, Fire Enthusiasts. How’s it going? I hope you had a Happy Easter, a nice long weekend or are simply doing well. I won’t take up too much of your time this week. There really isn’t much to tell…

There has been a delay with regard to getting started with the editing on my latest offering. I’m told it should get started very soon. Once I have a feel for how long that process might take I will begin sending out the information on the cover reveal for it. My thanks to all who have asked to be involved in this project. I appreciate the heck out of you for doing so. If you have yet to sign up and would love to be considered, please just let me know here in the comments. I’m easy. I will send out an e-mail with the blurbs and cover of my new book. It is a paranormal romance for those of you who have been away in writer’s cave or parts unknown. The cover is gorgeous, but you can see that for yourselves when I send it to you. If for some reason you change your mind or are unable to be involved – no worries.

For those who heard that I am transferring positions at the day job, I spent part of last week at the new facility and will spend a couple more days there training before taking hold of the reins, as it were, on April 8th. It is a cold storage that my company bought a few years ago. It has a handful of production lines in it and a lot less people. The difference here is I get to smash my dreadful alarm clock and get up with the sun. *grins* The ten years I spent getting up before God did (3 am) seem to be over. I will be acting manager at this place, in charge of nearly everything except the maintenance. I’ll let you know how it goes…

My family took advantage of the long Easter weekend and took a day trip to the coast. We live in the California Central Valley so it’s only a three hour drive to get anywhere. As hot as it gets in the summer, the fact that we are that close to everything makes it really a great place to live. Anyway, we started our day in Morro Bay. We had lunch there and did some window shopping. At the bottom of this post you will find a photo of a bar here because I used the real-life location in my second novel, Flash Point. We then moved down the coast and stopped in San Luis Obispo. My oldest son visits there with his pals all the time and wanted to show us his hang-outs. There’s a record store there that is pretty famous: Boo Boo Records. It has a little bit of everything. We left with a handful of cds: a re-mastered version of Boston’s first album and Black Sabbath’s first album for me since I couldn't seem to get it on iTunes. We then headed to Pismo Beach for dinner and the famous Splash CafĂ©. We had the award winning Clam Chowder Bread bowl as you can see.

All in all it was a nice day. It was cold and cloudy near the water at both Morro Bay and Pismo, but SLO was nice. The four of us had a good time and we got back home safely at about 10 pm. Have any of you locals been to any of these places? I’d love to hear about it.

We’ll talk soon.