Jan 17 2018

The Greatest Showman #ThisIsMe Guest Post by J. R. Vincente

Today’s guest post is from fellow indie author and A to Z Challenge participant, J. R. Vincente.



I have seen the movie The Greatest Showman in theaters three times. Three times. That’s a lot, especially for me. I couldn’t even tell you the number of times I have listened to the soundtrack. Every time it gets quiet for more than 30 seconds, I find myself turning on the soundtrack. I know that I will be in the store purchasing the DVD/Blu Ray the day it is released. I have not been that obsessed with a movie… ever.

Before you think that this is just a random movie review, it’s not. Yes, I loved the movie. Yes, I think you should go out and see it. Yes, I think you should buy the soundtrack. But that’s not at all what this is about.

This is about a message. A message of love and acceptance that I think needs to be heard. Here is my favorite quote from the movie:

“You are putting folks of all kinds on stage with you — all colors, shapes, sizes — presenting them as equals. Another critic might have called it a celebration of humanity.”

This quote resonates with me in a way that very little ever has. I have never quite felt like I belonged to any one particular group. Going back to elementary school, I had friends, but I wasn’t in one of those stereotypical groups. Right into adulthood, I just never felt quite like I belonged.

But I feel like I finally found my place in my local writing group. It’s a place where I really, truly belong. A place where my quirks are celebrated. A place where my weight doesn’t matter. A place where I can be my polyamorous, kinky self.

This simple fact is what drew me to writing in the first place. I can be me, completely and wholly. I can express myself in fantasy in any way I want. I choose to self-publish so that I can write whatever I want, whenever I want.

I urge you as readers and writers to support each other. Look past our differences, whether it’s color, shape, or size, and show your support for your fellow bloggers/writers, because of our differences, not in spite of them. So I encourage you to go out and read a new blog, learn something new, experience something different, and above all, be open and accepting of one another.

If you like what you read, check out my blog or my novels available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords.
Don’t be shy! Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or Goodreads!

Jan 15 2018

#BoutOfBooks 21 Read-a-Thon #RAT Book Review and Wrap-Up

#boutofbooks readathon Jan 2018

I’m took part in the Bout of Books 21 Read-a-thon from Jan 8 to 14.



My goal for Bout of Books 21 was to read and review 3 books.
I managed only two.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8 and runs through Sunday, January 14 in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Challenges

Book Spine Poetry

Stack books so that the book titles make a sentence or a short poem. Funny, serious; anything’s good! Take a photo and post it on your blog or tweet it with hashtag #bookspinepoetry #BoutofBooks






The day 7 challenge was to leave a review.


Book Review

LOST!: A themed anthology 2017 4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner


It was a good anthology. There are a lot of stories featuring religion, grief, or friendship as major plot points. (I am one of the authors in this book.)

My favorites (in order of publication) :
Christmas Letter by Robin Currie — I like this for the raw honesty the character hangs on to in the end.
The Ambassador by Caroline Grace — This chilling story feels very plausible. Excellent read.
Sea Princess by Autumn Fenton — Excellent imagery. Very realistic.
Matilijas by C. Lee McKenzie — Very powerful and well-written.
Nan’s Spirit by J Lenni Dorner — I wrote it, so yes, I love it. Hopefully it makes people think.
Scattered Debris by Jaimi-Lynn Smith — Anyone have some extra tissues? Is there a cardiologist in the house? My heart needs to be sewn back together, please!
The Lucky Ones by Susan Van Sciver — Whoa. This is fantastic writing! I’m not sure how it didn’t win. I hope this author publishes a book, because I want to buy it.

This book had some authors that were new to me. There were also some stories with diversity.
try something new square 2018 book reading challenge



Challenge Progress

Finished
Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane
LOST!: A themed anthology 2017

Jan 11 2018

#BoutOfBooks 21 Read-a-Thon #RAT post 4 Book Review and Bookish Favorites

#boutofbooks readathon Jan 2018

I’m taking part in the Bout of Books 21 Read-a-thon from Jan 8 to 14.



My goal for Bout of Books 21 is to read and review 3 books.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8 and runs through Sunday, January 14 in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Challenge

ALL THE FAVORITES!

We all have our bookish favorites so why don’t we share? Share with us!



Book Review

Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane 4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner


Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,892 Paid in Kindle Store
#58 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Literary Fiction > Psychological
#99 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Literary Fiction > Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
#537 in Books > Literature & Fiction > Literary

I’m giving it 4 stars because 3.7 isn’t an option. I’m willing to round up because there were a few spots that made me laugh.
(‘”But you’re Canadian.” “Yes,” he admitted, “but I’m not very good at it.”” — Ha ha ha! Loved that.)

The first half of this book (or the Necklace chapter and everything before it) most definitely felt like literary fiction. I just couldn’t get into it, and couldn’t figure out the purpose of most of it. I suspect that the more social anxiety a reader has experienced, the more they could enjoy Rachel, the main character. I was not especially fond of her. But I hung in, because the book was raved about as a psychological thriller mystery, so I figured it’d get better.

Which it did, for a while. And then it slowed again. And then it rocketed off and abruptly ended with barely any conclusion. At that point, I was left wondering if the author wrote the last 60% of the book first, and then some readers said they couldn’t understand how the main character could change so much, what her motivations were, and suggested that she didn’t feel real; at which point the first 40% of the book was written. I don’t know, but that’s how it felt to me, personally. On the other hand, the first part is like a literary reflection of the second part.

I’m also not sure if I should recommend this book to friends with social anxiety (“Look! A character with whom you can identify.”) or not (“She gets over it using good old-fashioned outrage. Have you tried just being really pissed off?”). I can’t tell if Rachel would be relatable or offensive, honestly.

It’s interesting that Rachel’s mother considered her own book to be a “con job.” Worrying about not being able to write a worthy follow-up caught my attention.

The description of living with someone who one has to fight with every day, the state of perpetual war, I’ve known too many people who could relate to that bit. Knowing someone as well as anyone does, and yet not knowing someone at all, that too I can totally understand. In the chapter titled “Refraction,” where Rachel thinks about her book, and it describes good and bad writing days, that scene I found extremely relatable and enjoyable.

“She’d woken this morning in a great mood. All she’d wanted since was to keep that mood alive. She just wanted to stay happy for a day.” — Those lines really got to me. There’s a whole star earned just for that part, as far as I’m concerned.

There’s a character in the book who is described as smelling like Lightning, which I found interesting. And the mention of tragedy fatigue, how difficult it is for journalists to keep people caring about a subject after weeks, or days, of things getting worse instead of better– that part I found thought-provoking. I’m also wondering if everyone really does have a fixed age for themselves in their mind’s eye. In the “Safe House” chapter, the origin of the title of the book seemed to become clear.

But then there were parts I didn’t care for at all. A page or two of untagged dialog that I found irritating to follow. And parts like, “He raised her gun. At least she thought he raised her gun. No, he did. He raised it.” made me roll my eyes. And scenes she imagines, though it isn’t ever mentioned they’re imagined (though it’s easy to conclude), took me out of the story.

“It was the voice of home, but not home the reality, home as a construct, home as an ideal.” That line was one of my favorites from this book.

And I enjoyed the line with “discarding of American industry, this switch from a culture that made things of value to a culture that consumed things of dubious merit.” It reminds me of something the “civilized” elders I know are always going on about.

This book and author were both something new I tried. Weather was a vital part of the story (which is my chosen trope).
try something new square 2018 book reading challenge all about the trope 2018 book reading challenge= weather



Challenge Progress

Finished
Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane


Started
LOST!: A themed anthology 2017

Jan 10 2018

#BoutOfBooks 21 Read-a-Thon #RAT post 3 #bookspinerainbow

#boutofbooks readathon Jan 2018

I’m taking part in the Bout of Books 21 Read-a-thon from Jan 8 to 14.



My goal for Bout of Books 21 is to read and review 3 books.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8 and runs through Sunday, January 14 in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Challenges

Book Spine Rainbow

Take a selection of your favorite book spines to make a rainbow!



A post shared by J Lenni Dorner (@jlennidorner) on

#bookspinerainbow #boutofbooks
The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul (red)
Wild Magic (orange)
The Shining (yellow)
When You Need the Right Words (green)
Red Queen (blue)
Carve the Mark (indigo)
The Element Encyclopedia of Birthdays (violet)

Challenge Progress

Finished

Started
Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane

Jan 09 2018

#BoutOfBooks 21 Read-a-Thon #RAT post 2 #2018goals

#boutofbooks readathon Jan 2018

I’m taking part in the Bout of Books 21 Read-a-thon from Jan 8 to 14.



My goal for Bout of Books 21 is to read and review 3 books.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8 and runs through Sunday, January 14 in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Challenges

Share Your 2018 Reading Goal(s)

Got a reading goal or two or ten for the new year? Share with us! Comment, tweet it out, collage it on Instagram, film it on YouTube, or post it on your blog. Remember to use the hashtag #boutofbooks #2018goals if your platform of choice uses hashtags.



Challenge Progress

Finished

Started
Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane

Jan 09 2018

Bout of Books 21 Read-a-Thon #RAT post 1 #insixwords #boutofbooks Twitter chat

#boutofbooks readathon Jan 2018

I’m taking part in the Bout of Books 21 Read-a-thon from Jan 8 to 14.



My goal for Bout of Books 21 is to read and review 3 books.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 8 and runs through Sunday, January 14 in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 21 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Challenges

Introduce Yourself #insixwords

#insixwords #boutofbooks @photo_lab_app #photo_lab_app @boutofbooks

A post shared by J Lenni Dorner (@jlennidorner) on

Challenge Progress

Finished
(none)


Started
Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane












Dec 31 2017

Book Review-a-thon

Review-a-thon image
paranormalbookreviews-kelly.blogspot.com/p/review-thon.html

#FlightsOfFantasy #DiversityBingo2017 #SpecFic #DebutAuthor #NewToMe2017


Ghost Stories of the Lehigh Valley by Charles J. Adams III, David J. Seibold
4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

#NewToMe2017

A good book with several stories I’ve heard around before, and some I’ve encountered myself. I do wish my Lenni-Lenape people were portrayed better in this book though.

The Rusty Nail Bar in Palmerton with the face in the leather, I’ve seen that. And Hawk Mountain, I’ve been there many times. Good notes on the King George Inn, though it only lists some of the ghosts and stories of that place. (Which has sadly been unoccupied for a few years as of the writing of this review in 2017.)


Dragon of the Stars by Alex J. Cavanaugh
5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

#SpecFic #NewToMe2017

“Doesn’t matter the ship, Son. It’s her captain and crew that make the vessel.”
I knew as soon as I read Fyall saying that line that this book was going to drop an unexpected twist. I was right! Excellent ending.

This is a classic sci-fi story. It reminded me of a cross between Star Trek (the characters, dialog, and setting) and the Stargate Atlantis Wraith ships (one of the technologies).

I won a copy of this book thanks to an IWSG contest.

The writing is exceptional. I’d like to get to know Aden’s mother’s dragons better. I’ve had friends who aimed for “the princess” rather than the alternative they didn’t see, so I found that relatable. But with what happens once he wises up… yikes! That’s one heck of a twist. I kept reading because I was very interested in the fate of the kargrandes.

I’m glad I read this and I look forward to reading more by this author.


Don’t Sell Me, Tell Me: How to use storytelling to connect with the hearts and wallets of a hungry audience
by Greg Koorhan
2 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

#DebutAuthor #NewToMe2017

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
(I’m not sure why I was contacted and asked to do this, other than having landed on an email list.)

The writing is fine. The grammar, punctuation and such are fine.
In fact…
“The king died and then the queen died is a story. The king died, and then the queen died of grief is a plot.”
That is written as well in this book as it was in E. M. Forster’s “Aspects of the Novel.”

I did not download the additional workbook offered at the opening of this book, so perhaps I missed the citation?

Either way, I’ve knocked two possible stars off the rating scale due to the very large amount of material in this book which I’ve read in other books. In fact, if you are like me (an author who has read many writing reference books before), you’ll soon get a sense of déjà vu. *SPOILER ALERT* Let me break it down: Use everything you know about how to write a story, aim it at some cookie-cutter ideal reader, and that’s how to market according to this book. Turn your About Me into a story with a full arc about the ideal reader reading your book. That’s it. *END SPOILER*

I did like the line about “A brand is the sum total of all the experiences a customer has with you or your product or company.” Though an article by Guy Smith from September 28, 2004 says much the same thing, so this wasn’t really new information to me, either. (http://www.marketingprofs.com/4/smith1.asp)

The book asked what I stand against, what angers me about my industry or business. Well, one BIG pet-peeve of mine is the way “diverse people” are excluded, especially by book marketers. Why can’t males read romance? I’m not a fan of the category label “chick lit,” as it feels exclusionary. I find it frustrating when I read facts about the low rate of books that American Adults read (http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/11/23/who-doesnt-read-books-in-america/), especially with lines like, “men are less likely than women to have read a book.”

So please consider that as my main reason for knocking off another possible star rating, as at the 68% percent mark in this book, it talks about the ideal reader. It doesn’t make sense to sell to anyone outside an ideal audience of one reader? Should customers be CLONES of one person?

Well, I’m a Lenni-Lenape. I’m not a clone. I’m not someone to whom people market. My values, my name, and my demographic aren’t likely to be on some list of an “ideal reader.” Even my fears are different from those of most Americans. So no, I’m not someone “ideally suited” to have read this book.

I nurture my value of diverse books, and of reference books that have more original ideas and far less of the same words as other publications. That’s the “theme” of this review– to strive higher, to aim for a better world. Something I feel this book does not encourage, support, or do.


Colorblind: A Novel By Leah Harper Bowron
4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

#DiversityBingo2017 #DebutAuthor #NewToMe2017

I received a free ARC from the publisher.

More tell than show. Very simplified/ easy-to-read, like a grade school book. “Dick Jane” for a slightly older set. I can imagine an accompanying list of vocabulary words with terms and slang from the late sixties. I do still feel that the Earth, when written as a planet name, is a proper noun deserving of capitalization.

Lisa reminds me of the first friend I made at public school. Nervous, feeling like her clothing didn’t fit right, nice to me because people were mean to her for being different so she “knew how it was.”

The mental tennis with Mrs. Cook bothered me because upstaging or talking back to a teacher always, in my experience, results in punishments.

Ahh, Mrs. Duke… placing well-behaved students at the same lunch table as the delinquents, thinking that putting foxes in the hen house could cause mass vegetarianism. This is such an incredibly relatable memory for me. (I’d have starved if I didn’t have my “savage” knowledge and skills.)

Overall, the characters are well-written and the lessons are obvious. A worthwhile read.


Straight Up Tasty: Meals, Memories, and Mouthfuls from My Travels by Adam Richman
5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

#DebutAuthor (His first cookbook, according to the book) #NewToMe2017

More than just another cookbook, this is entertainment.

I don’t cook well (especially indoors), but I do occasionally enjoy reading about how to do it. This book has great visuals from Adam’s many food-travels. The stories are fun. I laughed out loud several times while reading this, something which never happens to me when reading a cookbook!

There are some easy recipes I’m looking forward to trying. And there are others I’m hoping to talk someone into making for us. (Ha ha.) I’m glad I read this book.


10 questions to ask a friend who has read your novel


Dec 31 2017

Goals for a #HappyNewYear #NewYearsResolution

Big Goals Bloghop Banner
gotgoalsbloghop.blogspot.co.za



It’s the end of 2017! Break out the potatoes, because this is going to be a LONG post.

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The MAIN LIFE GOALS:

  • Publish two decent-selling book series (speculative fiction)
  • Survive at least another 37 years Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goalfor 2017
  • There’s also the Bucket List.



Current Writing End Goals

From the End Goals of an Author post.

  • Self-publish Anah’s Story by March 20, 2018.
  • Find a way (emotionally, mentally) to complete the high fantasy short story.
  • Redo the longer version of the tribal story, then self-publish it in 2018.

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2018 Resolution:

#NewYearsResolution

  • This year I resolve to be more engaged in my online writing community by regularly commenting on fellow writers blogs every month, leaving book reviews, and publishing another book.



2017 Resolution:

  • This year I resolve to finish at least one of my big writing projects. Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal




2018 Goals:

blog about it challenge 2018 try something new square 2018 book reading challenge all about the trope 2018 book reading challenge

2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
J. has
read 0 books toward
their goal of
50 books.
hide

2017 Goals:

survivor #atozchallenge
@JLenniDorner #nanowrimo Camp-2017-Winner-Profile-Photo

2017 Reading challenges GenreSF120 #NewToMe2017 image #FlightsOfFantasy image debut author reading challenge 2017 image50 books read 50 bookpledge

2017 Reading Challenge

J. has
read 0 books toward
their goal of
50 books.
hide

See my Year in Books Goodreads 2017



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Goals for January:


  • Fix my blog’s newsletter problem
  • Start reading challenges
  • Bout of Books
  • Work on Goodreads shelves organizing my TBR by page length
  • Comment on 30 blogs
  • Write
  • Find more Debut Authors
  • Check out WEPFF 2018 Challenges
  • Fix more Photobucket broken links
  • Follow more All Author group members on Twitter (when it lets me)

  • Review of Goals for December:


  • Create paperback version of Fraction of Existence Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Set up Amazon author pages in other countries. Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Fix my blog’s newsletter problem half credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
  • Finish reading challenges half credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
  • Find two more Debut Authors Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • WEPFF December Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal
  • Fix more Photobucket broken links Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal
  • Follow more All Author group members on Twitter (when it lets me) Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal




  • Weekly Goals:



    Dec 31- Jan 6 Work on Anah’s story
    Jan 7- Jan 13 BOUT OF BOOKS
    Jan 14- Jan 20 (travel)
    Jan 21- Jan 27 Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy shorts

    Review of Weekly Goals:



    Nov 26- Dec 2 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy shorts Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal
    Dec 3- Dec 9 prepare for WEP Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal
    Dec 10- Dec 16 Finish Nano Stories Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal
    Dec 17- Dec 23 Holiday Prep Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    Dec 24- Dec 30 Edit Anah’s story Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal

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    @JLenniDorner is the Interviewer for the Operation Awesome blog Debut Author Spotlight on Wednesdays

    NOW FILLING 2018 SLOTS!

    Please share the debut author image. Thank you!




    Try the Grammarly extension in your browser. Improve your writing!




    Have goals? Need encouragement? This blog hop is for you!
    gotgoalsbloghop.blogspot.co.za

    Dec 30 2017

    DEJA VU BLOGFEST #dejavu2017


    DEJA VU BLOGFEST 2017

    Déjà vu Blogfest

    Most people see the latest blog post or a link from a social media share. Hidden gems from the year are missed!

    Like… did you know I was hit by a deer in November?
    (No, not a vehicle. Me. I was sitting on a rock in the woods, earbuds in… Which was dumb. I know it’s dumb. I’ve whacked people with a stick for doing things less dumb. That was my main thought as I crawled/ hobbled back to “civilization.”)

    Did you know I published a novel this year? Or that I won publication in another anthology?

    I’m pretty proud of my IWSG logo entry.
    My most commented on post this year was, naturally, the A post in the #AtoZChallenge. (79 comments)

    But, as I consider my Déjà vu post, I’m torn between sharing Would You Rather – The Book Edition or Ideal Reader. The first is longer, with more images, and has 20 comments. The second has only a comment from Misha and my reply.
    This blogfest is about getting more attention to overlooked posts, so the second wins. A quick background: I was doing exercises from a writing reference book; this post is one of the results of that.

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    I’m reading:
    47 Mind Hacks for Writers by Karen Dimmick & Steve Dimmick
    and using the exercises as blog post prompts.

    The task at hand is to identify my ideal reader.
    For the Existence series:

    1- Someone who will buy, read, and review my books.

    (That was kind of obvious, wasn’t it?)

    2- Someone who enjoys fantasy mixed with the real world. Someone who is ready to think, to wonder, and to question. Someone who enjoys a bit of action, a little romance and sexual tension, splashes of darkness, and who isn’t closed off to the idea of beings more powerful than humans (at least in fiction). A reader who pays attention and is patient.

    3- Anyone who has ever glanced at ancient histories, mythologies, or architectures and questioned how these groups of people who never met all had such similarities.

    history pyramids

    3b- Or anyone that ever read those old histories and myths and asked, “Okay, but then what happened?”

    4- Readers who get through a whole dystopian book series (Hunger Games) and ask, “Well what happened before? What’s the story before society went off the rails? How did we go from our current world to the one presented in this society? Nuclear weapons, bad leaders, aliens, ran out of bees, what?”

    Three is from the story my ancestors passed down. Four is how I figured out when the story should begin. (2003 to 2005 for Fractions of Existence.)

    Do you feel like you’re one of those ideal readers? Have you ever made a list of your own ideal readers?

    Dec 27 2017

    Winter 2017 New Adult Scavenger Hunt #NewASH WIN BOOKS

    New Adult Scavenger Hunt banner 2017 #NewASH

    Welcome to the #NewASH Winter 2017 New Adult Scavenger Hunt

    Play the game! It’s a chance to WIN BOOKS!

    I’m being hosted by Paula Stokes. You were possibly sent here, mid-hunt, after visiting Kelsey Ketch.

    You should follow NewASH on Twitter (@NAScavengerHunt), Facebook (NA Scavenger Hunt), Facebook Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/936229823097234/) and on the website (http://newadultscavengerhunt.com).

    Team Blue #NewASH 2017

    PLEASE WELCOME:


    Suzanne van Rooyen, author of Scardust

    Scardust by Suzanne van Rooyen is part of the #NewASH New Adult Scavanger Hunt for books

    Dead Rock, Texas, 2037

    Raleigh Williams made a promise to his brother before he died, that he’d scatter his ashes on Mars. Desperate to leave a life of bad memories behind and start over in the Martian colony, Raleigh fully intends to keep that promise. But his plans are thwarted when a meteor near-misses him in the desert, and Raleigh finds in its crater not debris or even a spacecraft, but a man covered in swirling scars and with no memory of who he is. At least he looks like a man—a man Raleigh can’t seem to keep his eyes off of—but whenever they touch it ignites a memory swap between them.

    Raleigh agrees to help Meteor Man piece together his life through their cosmic connection. But the memory share goes both ways, and Raleigh becomes inexplicably entangled with a guy who is everything he needs—everything good that Raleigh is not—but might not even be human. As their minds and worlds collide, reality unravels and Raleigh must face a painful truth, one that could shatter his dreams of finding love, reaching Mars, and fulfilling his brother’s last wish.

    Suzanne van Rooyen beardust scardust fan art

    Check out this short scene!

    There’s sand between my toes – not the thirsty dust of Dead Rock dreaming of a summer storm, but the squelching kind that’s somehow cool despite the Corpus Christi swelter. The white-gold beach stretches toward a placid ocean, waves lapping at the shore in time with my heart. Part of me wanted it to be violent, wanted to hear the crash of bone-breaking waves and shudder at the thought of being towed under the foaming swell, but the Atlantic is calm today as Brennan takes my hand.

    “Is it how you imagined it would be?” he asks, casting me a furtive glance.

    I don’t know. I’ve seen the ocean countless times online, in photos, paintings, a million renditions experienced by other people. I couldn’t have imagined the various shades of blue and green that ripple across its surface. I couldn’t have imagined the sticky perspiration slicking Brennan’s shirt over his chest and trickling between my shoulders. I couldn’t have imagined the scent of salt and the feel of the wind pouring off the edge of the world. Seagulls wheel and screech as I squint into the unforgiving sun. The same sun glares down over all of Texas, but here it doesn’t seem so cruel.

    “Yes,” I say, then, “No. I don’t know. It’s so… so… big.”

    Inhale. The beach. Exhale. The ocean. Inhale. The world. Exhale. The universe. Inhale. This moment with me standing holding the hand of the guy I love. Exhale. Do I deserve this?

    Brennan laughs gently and tugs me closer to the waves. Bear tugs on my other hand, the leash preventing him from tearing after the seagulls. He snaps at the waves, catching the foamy frills with flapping lips. He barks in joy, eyes shiny and whole body wiggling as he wags his tail. That’s how I feel. My whole body vibrating with a joy I can’t even begin to express. I hope Brennan knows. I turn to look at him, the words on my heart never quite making it to my lips.

    With a squeeze, he lets go of my hand and starts digging in the sand.

    “Tell me if a wave’s coming in,” he says.

    I unclip Bear’s leash, watching the ebb and flow as my dog tears through the shallows. The horizon blurs in sun-glare, the water dazzling. I wonder if this is how it’ll feel when we finally get to Mars.

    “Raleigh,” Brennan says my name and a frisson passes through my body, setting every nerve ending shaking like a rattlesnake.
    “What you think?” he asks when I crouch beside him.

    I study what he’s made and can’t help the grin spreading across my face. It’s a perfect replica of Olympus Mons, the tallest mountain in the solar system. Before I get the chance to tell him how brilliant he is, to ask for the umpteenth time if he’s sure he wants to be with me, here on this beach, in space, anywhere – Bear comes hurtling after a seagull, laying waste to the Martian shield volcano.

    “Sorry,” I manage to say.

    “Doesn’t matter. Pretty soon we’ll get to see the real thing.” Brennan smiles and looks at me with eyes as blue and fathomless as the ocean.

    Suzanne van Rooyen

    Suzanne is a tattooed storyteller from South Africa. She currently lives in Finland where she finds the heavy metal soothing and the cold, dark forests inspiring. Although she has a Master’s degree in music, Suzanne prefers conjuring strange worlds and creating quirky characters. When she grows up, she wants to be an elf – until then, she spends her time (when not writing) climbing, buying far too many books, and entertaining her shiba inu, Lego.

    You can find Suzanne at:
    @Suzanne_Writer (Twitter)
    Facebook.com/SuzannevanRooyenAuthor/
    Amazon
    http://suzannevanrooyen.com

    Team Blue #NewASH 2017 - Win these books!

    Do you feel pretty lucky having read all that? I bet you do! In fact, I bet you feel 11 times luckier than before you got here. Yup. Eleven times luckier. That’s all the fingers plus a nose. Are you with me? Okay!

    Additional Giveaway!!!


    Prize: LOST!: A themed anthology 2017 (Kindle Edition)
    Hosted by: J Lenni Dorner
    NEW ADULT SCAVENGER HUNT participant 2017
    Winner: Randomly selected after Giveaway has ended, 1 winner.
    Requirements for participation:
    Resident of the 50 United States
    18+ years of age (or legal age)
    Follow J Lenni Dorner on Amazon
    Giveaway link:
    https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/68678604ce86bfb3


    By the way… I’m joining the Bout of Books read-a-thon next month! Click to check it out.

    Bout of Books Jan 2017

    Now go forth and meet Joy Penny!

    https://joypenny.wordpress.com/2017/12/27/new-adult-scavenger-hunt-team-blue-stop/

    Dec 20 2017

    Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop December 21st to 31st

    Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop December 21st to 31st


    Welcome!

    My prizes are an ebook copy of LOST! and a $5 US Amazon e-giftcard. Good luck!


    LOST!: A themed anthology 2017 (Kindle Edition – Clean Read)

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    (Wish there were more books to win? https://newadultscavengerhunt.com Starts on Dec 27.)



    http://www.bookhounds.net/2017/10/sign-ups-now-open-midwinters-eve-giveaway-hop-12-21-31.html



    Dec 19 2017

    #NewAsh and Book Reviews

    #NewAsh The New Adult Scavenger Hunt Be sure to visit TODAY to learn what I like most about December!


    You’ll also have a chance at a $5 Amazon giftcard!
    newadultscavengerhunt.com

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    #FlightsOfFantasy #DiversityBingo2017 #SpecFic #DebutAuthor #NewToMe2017

    GenreSF120 #NewToMe2017 image #FlightsOfFantasy image debut author reading challenge 2017 image 50 Book Pledge book reader @JLenniDorner


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    Flowers for Algernon

    by Daniel Keyes
    5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

    I think many people would benefit from reading this book, as it offers a great perspective and a chance to grow. However, I’m not sure how many people would understand it, as it’s possible that, unless you can identify with how the main character feels, it simply wouldn’t be an interesting book. Mostly I want certain people to read it in the hopes they’ll gain insight into why the example they’re setting is a bad one. The very people to whom I refer are the ones most likely to have the point sail clear over their heads. It’s an ironic twist as, in not understanding, they would become like the main character, who is someone they wouldn’t like.

    In the book, Charlie is given something and is supposed to be grateful for it, even when it’s corrupted and the end result turns heartbreaking. There were several times in the book that the main character’s plight reminded me of my fellow Native Americans. Told we were not humans before outsiders changed us. Then, even those who changed, even those who surpassed the outsiders, are still treated differently. The old, “you are this and you’ve done that, in spite of being you.” Just enough so you’ll always be reminded that some folks will keep you on the outside, no matter what. And leaving you with the choice to be like Charlie was, laughing along in the hopes they’ll like you, even when they aren’t honestly good to you; or being like Rose, always obsessing over what others think, until that’s all you have left and people end up pitying you (at best).

    This is well-written literature. It might not seem so for the first ten percent of the book, but the reasoning becomes clear. Then it shifts to the grammatical structure to which most readers are accustomed. It’s worth hanging in there. The voice reminds me of J.D. Salinger. (It was published in April 1959, where as Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye is from 1951.) It’s a believable story told in first person (via the reports Charlie keeps), one of person-versus-self (or, arguably, person-versus-society), but it’s not a happy escape, nor does it have a HEA. The purpose is to make the reader think, and to remind the reader to be grateful for the ability to do so. It can make you a little bit better of a person, if you let it. But, like Charlie, you have to have motivation.

    My Highlights:
    I learned about the TAT, which I’d never heard of before. TAT

    I thought Charlie’s notes on God, when he thinks about Him in context for the first time, were interesting. “I remember Him as a distant uncle with a long beard on a throne…”

    And the heartbreaking thought, which too many of us have with age or disease:
    “I’ve got to try to hold onto some of the things I’ve learned. Please, God, don’t take it all away.”


    Savage (MC Biker Romance)

    by Lee Mae
    4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
    Short, easy to read. A more-good-than-bad guy hooks up with his nurse. Written in third-person point of view. Decent romance with some heat.


    Lifers

    M.A. Griffin
    4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
    A very interesting thriller. There’s quite a bit to unravel as it bounces between memories and regrets. It’s easy to identify with Preston.

    Urban explores who look at the world in a different way, looking for secret parts of a city, sound really interesting!

    I do feel my appreciation was slightly hindered by an “accent/language” barrier, as there are some British words and references which I’m not sure I properly comprehended. This is a reflection on me, and how ridiculously long it’s been since I traveled abroad, not on the book or the writer.


    Beneath This Mask

    by Meghan March
    5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
    Wow!
    This book blew my expectations out of the water.

    I only read a few romance-type books a year. But this book? It burned a hole in the genre box! It was nearly everything I’d want in a book. Yes, there was sizzling hot romance, but there was also mystery and suspense, and amazingly well-developed characters with deep backstories.

    By the way, if you like tattoos, there are several scenes that you’ll very likely LOVE.

    And a quick note to fellow TwiHards… there are a few scenes you’ll love. (No vampires here, but still.) Here’s one: “I’m not strong enough to walk away from you again. This time, you’re going to have to tell me to go.”

    The Charlotte / Charlie reveal is fantastic. It says something about our society, about being true to yourself over being who people expect. There’s real depth there.

    A former military person dealing with mental trauma and not seeking help — the book is worth reading just for this reality, which needs to change. “I didn’t want anyone to know that I was broken.”


    Private Reserve (Dossier #1)

    by Cathryn Fox
    4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner

    Good character building. Intriguing world building. Fast, easy to read. A great amount of heat almost right off the bat.

    There’s a lot of …”frustration” in wanting the characters to just be honest with each other, to just communicate already! It’s what builds the tension in the story.

    It does have M/M and F/M/M scenes. Responsible, informed, consenting adults safely engage in erotic playtime.


    Dawn and the Impossible Three (The Baby-sitters Club Graphix #5)

    by Ann M. Martin
    5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
    Time-traveled back to my childhood for the fifth time! (Plus, this book means the series is halfway to including Logan Bruno!)

    Yes, I know, some of you are wondering why I’m into these books. A big part of it was having a crush on Mary Anne during my youth. (What? Yeah, I know. Shut up.)

    The books are just as fun to read now as they were twenty-five years ago (crap, I’m old). It’s a time before mobile phones and everyone having the Internet. I guess they could have rewritten/updated/ modernized the series, but I’m kind of glad they didn’t. This is part of my history, of the way life was back then.

    Plus, lots of my friends were girls, and they loved reading these, so I got sucked in. Sometimes it’s okay to be a sheep, like when it means reading books like these.


    Writing the Paranormal Novel:

    Techniques and Exercises for Weaving Supernatural Elements Into Your Story by Steven Harper
    4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
    Good book. Lots of cool tips and tricks. Glad I read this one.

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    book star rating

    #NewAsh The New Adult Scavenger Hunt Don’t forget to visit TODAY!

    Dec 08 2017

    Contest and Book News

    Book News:

    Fractions of Existence is getting a paperback version. Expected to be available on Amazon before December 23.

    LOST!: A themed anthology 2017 is now available. Read my story of a time traveler who inadvertently saves humanity from extinction.

    Contest News:

    The Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop is coming to this blog from December 21 to 31.

    #NewAsh The New Adult Scavenger Hunt Winter Hunt runs from December 27 to 31. I’ve entered Fractions of Existence. Fingers crossed! Either way, it’s fun to do the hunts, as it’s a great way to find more books to read!

    Nov 24 2017

    Goals Oh Deer

    Big Goals Bloghop Banner
    gotgoalsbloghop.blogspot.co.za



    I saw the sad news that Misha might not be able to keep this goal hop going. Hopefully that won’t be the case! She’s a good person and deserves better.

    It’s Thanksgiving weekend here in America. Thursday people eat turkey (just like the pilgrims probably DIDN’T in 1621… pheasant, deer, fish, shellfish, other small game– anyway) and lots of sides. On Black Friday, people flood the stores to fight for the best deals (sometimes literally). Then it’s Small Business Saturday, where people shop at the non-chain stores. Sunday they sleep, I think, I don’t know. And then it’s Cyber Monday, when people attempt to crash the Internet by massive online shopping.

    How will I join in the festivities? By putting my book ON SALE this weekend.

    Fractions of Existence


    What else happened this month?
    I was hit by a deer.
    deer crossing


    “This is quite the injury you have here, feller. Were you wearing a seatbelt?” -Emergency Room Doctor


    Deer Gilmore Girls


    No.
    I was sitting on a rock in the forest. I wasn’t even hunting.
    I was blindsided.
    deer humor



    I may have landed on the Naughty List after this month’s goal failures. Can I pay medical bills with coal???

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    The MAIN LIFE GOALS:

    • Publish two decent-selling book series (speculative fiction)
    • Survive at least another 37 years Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goalfor 2017
    • There’s also the Bucket List.



    Current Writing End Goals

    From the End Goals of an Author post.

    • Self-publish Fractions of Existence in September 2017. Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    • Self-publish Anah’s Story by March 20, 2018.
    • Find a way (emotionally, mentally) to complete the high fantasy short story.
    • Redo the longer version of the tribal story, then self-publish it in 2018.

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    2017 Resolution:

    • This year I resolve to finish at least one of my big writing projects. Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal



    2017 Goals:

    survivor #atozchallenge
    @JLenniDorner #nanowrimo Camp-2017-Winner-Profile-Photo

    2017 Reading challenges GenreSF120 #NewToMe2017 image #FlightsOfFantasy image debut author reading challenge 2017 image

    2017 Reading Challenge

    J. has
    read 0 books toward
    their goal of
    50 books.
    hide



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    Goals for December:



    DECEMBER

  • Create paperback version of Fraction of Existence
  • Set up Amazon author pages in other countries.
  • Fix my blog’s newsletter problem
  • Finish reading challenges
  • Find two more Debut Authors
  • WEPFF December
  • Fix more Photobucket broken links
  • Follow more All Author group members on Twitter (when it lets me)


  • WEP2017 writing challenges



    Weekly Goals:



    Nov 26- Dec 2 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy shorts
    Dec 3- Dec 9 prepare for WEP
    Dec 10- Dec 16 Finish Nano Stories
    Dec 17- Dec 23 Holiday Prep
    Dec 24- Dec 30 Edit Anah’s story


    Review of Goals for November:






    Review of Weekly Goals:



    Oct 29- Nov 4 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal

    Nov 5- Nov 11 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal

    Nov 12- Nov 18 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy half credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
    Nov 19- Nov 25 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy Naughty List because @JLenniDorner failed to accomplish this goal



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    @JLenniDorner is the Interviewer for the Operation Awesome blog Debut Author Spotlight on Wednesdays

    NOW FILLING December 2017 SLOTS!

    Please share the debut author image. Thank you!




    Try the Grammarly extension in your browser. Improve your writing!




    Have goals? Need encouragement? This blog hop is for you!
    gotgoalsbloghop.blogspot.co.za

    Nov 23 2017

    Thanksgiving Thought

    Thanksgiving



    For more thoughts like this, Click.


    In all honesty though, folks, I hope you have a good holiday. Or just a nice day, for those of you outside of the US.

    Nov 05 2017

    Blog Email Subscriber Book Giveaway

    Book Giveaway Email

    If you are one of my email subscribers, you should have received an email just now reminding you about the giveaway. There are currently NO entries, so your odds are VERY good!

    Didn’t get the email and believe you should have? Please let me know. Thanks.

    – J

    Oct 30 2017

    Knocking Out Goals like Carving a Pumpkin into a Jack-O’-Lantern

    Big Goals Bloghop Banner
    gotgoalsbloghop.blogspot.co.za



    Last month I nailed a huge goal by publishing Fractions of Existence on Amazon.
    (Free if you have KU.)

    Shortly after, I found out my newsletter mailing list (over 6000 emails strong, thanks to this blog) was being sent to LESS THAN 1% of the people who signed up for it.

    I thought it was because of the GoDaddy email account, so I created a Google business account. I then sent an email to all subscribers announcing a contest where they could win a copy of my book for a friend. (No catch, other than only subscribers can enter. No purchase required. Doesn’t sign a friend up for email lists. Easy to enter.) Considering it’s been several days and there isn’t even ONE entry, I’m pretty sure the email still isn’t reaching people.

    IF YOU SEE THIS POST AS PART OF AN EMAIL, PLEASE LET ME KNOW! THANK YOU!

    So now I’m looking at other email newsletter services. Most expect me to pay $40 a month for a subscriber list of my size. That’s not going to happen.

    Between all of this going on, the A to Z challenge site has experienced a massive issue. My fellow co-hosts and I are working to resolve this problem.

    And my Snookums has been experiencing some health issues this month… and was “kind enough” to share them with me. The couple who vomits together goes to the ER together? Ah, the dark side of love that romance novels tend to overlook. Shipping a OTP who, like the men on the cursed ship in Moby Dick, suffered a severe occurrence of stomach cramps and other unpleasant digestive symptoms, but not for the same reason.

    The upside of October was finding out that my entry in a writing contest made it to the top fifteen, and therefore will be published in December. Yay!

    Two other short stories were on my blog. Check them out:
    WEP Flash Fiction
    Storytime Bloghop

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    The MAIN LIFE GOALS:

    • Publish two decent-selling book series (speculative fiction)
    • Survive at least another 37 years Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goalfor 2017
    • There’s also the Bucket List.



    Current Writing End Goals

    From the End Goals of an Author post.

    • Self-publish Fractions of Existence in September 2017. Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    • Self-publish Anah’s Story by March 20, 2018.
    • Find a way (emotionally, mentally) to complete the high fantasy short story.
    • Redo the longer version of the tribal story, then self-publish it in 2018.

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    2017 Resolution:

    • This year I resolve to finish at least one of my big writing projects. Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal



    2017 Goals:

    survivor #atozchallenge
    @JLenniDorner #nanowrimo Camp-2017-Winner-Profile-Photo

    2017 Reading challenges GenreSF120 #NewToMe2017 image #FlightsOfFantasy image debut author reading challenge 2017 image

    2017 Reading Challenge

    J. has
    read 0 books toward
    their goal of
    50 books.
    hide



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    Goals for November:


    • Read and Review 2 books
    • NaNoWriMo
    • Help fix A to Z blog



    Become NaNoWriMo buddies with J Lenni Dorner please


    Weekly Goals:



    Oct 29- Nov 4 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy
    Nov 5- Nov 11 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy
    Nov 12- Nov 18 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy
    Nov 19- Nov 25 NANOWRIMO Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy



    Review of Goals for October:


    • Create paperback version of Fraction of ExistenceTRICK because @JLenniDorner FAILED this goal
    • Set up Amazon author pages in other countries. TRICK because @JLenniDorner FAILED this goal
    • Read and Review 6 bookshalf credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
    • Get bookish BINGOhalf credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
    • Comment on 30 blogs TREAT because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    • WEP October story! TREAT because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    • Get ready for NaNoWriMohalf credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
    • Create another A to Z post on that bloghalf credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
    • Participate in the IWSG contests. half credit because @JLenniDorner accomplished part of this goal
    • Figure out why/ how to fix my newsletter only going out to 5% of my 5988 subscribers. TRICK because @JLenniDorner FAILED this goal
    • Fix more Photobucket broken links TRICK because @JLenniDorner FAILED this goal
    • Follow more All Author group members on Twitter (when it lets me) TRICK because @JLenniDorner FAILED this goal



    (Yikes. Only 2 in the “treat” complete category, and a bunch of 1/2 credits. Not good.)

    Review of Weekly Goals:



    Oct 1- Oct 7 Prepare for WEP TREAT because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    Oct 8- Oct 14 Prepare story for STORYTIME BLOGHOP TREAT because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    Oct 15- Oct 21 Work on IWSG storyTREAT because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
    Oct 22- Oct 28 Prepare for Nano Work on Tribal and/or High Fantasy shortsTRICK because @JLenniDorner FAILED this goal



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    @JLenniDorner is the Interviewer for the Operation Awesome blog Debut Author Spotlight on Wednesdays

    NOW FILLING November 2017 SLOTS!

    Please share the debut author image. Thank you!




    Try the Grammarly extension in your browser. Improve your writing!




    Have goals? Need encouragement? This blog hop is for you!
    gotgoalsbloghop.blogspot.co.za

    Oct 24 2017

    #StorytimeBloghop Grim Reapers on a Field Trip #FlashFiction #SFF

    #Storytimebloghop
    https://www.junetakey.com/storytime-blog-hop-rules-guidelines/
    https://www.junetakey.com/speculative-fiction-authors-open-call/



    Grim Reapers on a Field Trip

    by J Lenni Dorner

    “Good morning, class,” my teacher, Ms. Anubis, prowls in, speaking without looking up from her tablet. “All thirteen permission slips are signed. Today is your first field trip through the Veil. I trust everyone has studied their marks. Is everyone in costume?”
    She nods as she looks around, stopping when she gets to me.
    “Katie, what are you wearing?”
    “My reaper costume.”
    There are giggles from my classmates.
    “Why are your robes pink and sparkly?” Ms. Anubis sets down her cracked-screen tablet. She crosses her arms and glares at me.
    “There is no rule prohibiting it. Nowhere in your instructions did it say the robes have to be a specific color. I checked.”
    Travis laughs. “You’re such a twit. Where did you find pink fabric?”
    Everyone laughs with him, including the teacher. I could respond that I got it from his mother, but I opt not to.

    We follow Ms. Anubis. The nearest Veil is across the street, in the town center. We’ve all seen it before, but it looks bigger and brighter today.
    The adults who normally use this one have taken the day off or are using one of the others. Officer Been orders us to settle down.
    “Hello, seventh grade class of Ms. Anubis. For those who don’t know me, I am Officer Been. I am in charge of this Veil. Who can tell me why first-timers, such as yourselves, have to go through today, instead of any other day?”
    Five hands shoot up, including mine. I figure that he’ll pick me, since we reside in the same building. But he calls on the other student who shares our address, Travis.
    “This Veil goes to Earth, to a place called America. There, today is when people wear costumes. Since we didn’t learn invisibility yet, we go in costume to blend in, dressed the way they expect reapers to look, and snag them.”
    “Very good, Travis. Has each of you studied your mark?”
    Everyone says they have. Officer Been goes over the history of America’s costume holiday. I can’t hear over Billy and Martin snickering beside me.
    “I bet no one expects reapers to look poor,” Billy says.
    “I’m here for your soul, or your blackest sheet,” Martin jokingly impersonates Travis. I stomp on his foot.
    “What’s your problem?” He backs away from me.
    “Maybe Katie’s in love with the street-cleaner’s son,” Billy says. “Katie and Travis rolling in a grave, K-I-S-S-I-N-G.”
    “Shut up. I’m trying to concentrate.” I’m not in love with Travis. His parents are nice, though. They failed reaper training, which is why his dad cleans the streets and his mom does upkeep for my apartment building. His mom used to be a tailor, but in a metropolis where no one repairs what can be replaced, her skill became unprofitable.
    Until I asked her to help me make this special reaper costume.

    Billy goes through the Veil first. Thanks to a screen Officer Been set up, we get to watch the encounter. Billy walks beside his mark, someone that looks a lot like him, except for the different costumes.
    “Oh man! I got peanut butter cups at the last house.”
    The mark turns to Billy. “You’re lucky.”
    Billy shakes his head. “Nah. Peanut butter makes me sick.”
    The mark looks into a bag he’s carrying. “Want to trade for this?”
    Billy nods. They swap candies. The mark’s hand glows red for a moment, something only those from our side can see. We all cheer as Billy returns through the Veil.
    “Piece of… candy!” He laughs and fist pumps. He hands the soul to Officer Been.
    Travis goes next. His tattered, more gray than black, robe snags on a bush. He calls out for help. Dogs bark behind a fence. A light comes on in a darkened house.
    “No blasted trick-or-treaters wanted here! Can’t you read? Private property!”
    “Help, help! I’m trapped!” Tears stream down his face. “I want to go home!” Travis wails.
    The man stumbles across his yard, moaning and complaining. He lectures Travis about the dangers of walking at night alone, without a light. Then his hand glows. The mark collapses on his grass.
    “Excellent work, Travis!” Ms. Anubis says as he returns from the Veil, passing along the soul. “Katie, you’re up.”

    It’s colder than I expected. Maybe this is why Earth people think we wear hooded robes? I sneak down a long, white hall. Even I think this place smells terrible, and I’m from beyond the Veil! If I ever have a mark in a hospital again, I’m bringing nose plugs.
    As a nurse ducks out of a room, I slip inside. The door shuts behind me.
    “Hi. Trick or treat?” I hold out my bag of candy.
    The girl on the bed sets down her crayon and stares at me. “I’m not supposed to have visitors. I’m con… con… confabulous.”
    “That’s okay. Want to share my candy?”
    “I can’t eat real food.” She points to her IV bag. “You aren’t really a kid like me, are you?”
    I move to her bedside. “How do you mean?”
    “You’re Death.”
    “Why do you think that?”
    She shrugs. “I guess because I knew you were coming. I didn’t think you’d be in pink though.”
    “Do you like it?” I strut around, modeling. She laughs.
    “I love all that is pink and sparkly.” She picks up her pink crayon, makes two marks, and then holds up the drawing. It’s a sparkling, pink sky. “We can go now.”
    Smiling, I take her hand. I concentrate. The light is red for a moment, then turns pink with gold glitter as her soul slips out. I hear her laugh a final time. My first field trip through the Veil is over.




    #StorytimeBloghop Grim Reapers on a Field Trip #FlashFiction #SFF @JLenniDorner

    Oct 24 2017

    Marked by Fate Book Tour and Giveaway

    Marked by Fate: A Young Adult Fantasy and Science Fiction Collection
    Publication date: October 24th 2017
    Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Young Adult

    Marked by Fate is now enhanced with Augmented Reality! Read, Watch, Listen. The new ultimate reading experience!

    Step into adventure with Marked By Fate; the ultimate reading experience. Be immersed in twenty-six fantasy & science fiction worlds with state of the art Augmented Reality technology. Read, listen, and watch bonus content inside to bring the characters and story to life around you.

    Enjoy the added features of this special edition, which allow you to enjoy bonus content right from your reading device. See character artwork. Listen to your story’s soundtrack. Watch book trailers and bonus videos. Experience behind the scenes like never before, thanks to Augmented Reality technology. Immersive Fantasy™; bringing fantasy worlds to life.

    25 COMPLETE SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY NOVELS BY 26 BESTSELLING AUTHORS. PLUS, A SPECIAL BONUS NOVELLA.

    Embark on fantastic journeys through magical realms, dystopian lands, and faraway galaxies in this exciting collection of fantasy & science fiction novels brought to you by some of today’s hottest authors. Encounter werewolves, robots, angels, time travelers, shifters, and more in this action-packed box set that will leave you breathless.

    Authors:
    Kristin D. Van Risseghem
    Rhonda Sermon
    Kelly St. Clare
    Raye Wagner
    Ednah Walters
    Erin Hayes
    Siobhan Davis
    Jamie Thornton
    Debra Kristi
    Sarah K. L. Wilson
    Hilary Thompson
    Ingrid Seymour
    Jeanne Bannon
    Melle Amade
    Lena Mae Hill
    C.J. Anaya
    Jackson Dean Chase
    D. L. Armillei
    Emily Martha Sorensen
    Amalie Jahn
    Dionne Lister
    J.L. Weil
    Alisha Klapheke
    Angela Fristoe
    Meg Cowley
    Brandon Barr

    Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / iBooks

    99¢ for a limited time only!

    Welcome to Marked By Fate:
    An interactive Immersive Fantasy™reading experience!

    The authors of Marked By Fate are thrilled to share this ground-breaking novel with you!
    Think Harry Potter and Kindle in Motion. Moving, singing books,and all the excitement of a truly enriched reading experience.
    We call it Immersive Fantasy™, because that’s what it does. It draws you into our stories and brings our worlds to life!
    The titles in Marked By Fate use this revolutionary technology to bring you the best reading experience of your life.

    How does Immersive Fantasy™ work?
    Immersive Fantasy™ utilizes what’s known as Augmented Reality (AR). Using a smart phone/device, you can scan secret cues in the stories, and extra AR content will pop up on your device, streamed direct from the cloud (internet connection required).
    See amazing, exclusive character artwork. Watch video content.Listen to the soundtrack whilst you read. Discover behind the scenes with the authors in bonus content.

    Would you like to try it?
    Then keep reading! You have already downloaded the Immersive Fantasy edition of Marked By Fate, and you just need to bring the magic to life.
    The simple instructions overleaf will help you easily access this astonishing new world of fantasy that will delight your every sense.
    Start your Immersive Fantasy™ adventure today!

    Immersive Fantasy™ Instructions

    Getting set up
    These three steps are crucial to ensure you can access the AR content.
    1.On your smart phone or tablet, download the Aurasma app from your app store.
    2.Login to the app, and register your account.
    3.Search for the user ‘MarkedByFate’, and click follow.

    Accessing the Immersive Fantasy™ Augmented Reality content
    Follow these steps carefully to access the AR content. Additional help can be found on the Aurasma help desk.

    1.Read and enjoy the story, and watch for clues to the AR content. These will appear in the form of images with a symbol next to them, denoting the type of AR content. Content viewable includes images (camera icon), videos (movie clip icon), or music (music icon).
    2.You will need one device/format to read on, and a smart device to access the AR content.
    3.When you spot an Immersive Fantasy™ clue, open the Aurasma app on your smart device.(Navigate to the viewfinder screen if the app does not automatically do this.)
    4.Centre your viewfinder on the trigger image. Make sure to include all of the trigger image in the screen. You can view the content vertically/in portrait or horizontally/in landscape.
    5.The app will display the AR content in the form of an image overlay, video overlay,or music overlay, as denoted by the symbol next to the image.
    6.Enjoy!You can zoom in and out and tilt your camera to fully explore each piece of content. Make sure you have your sound turned on so you can listen to the video and audio content! You will have to continue focusing on the content to keep listening to music/watching videos/viewing images.
    7.It might take a little practice – don’t worry if you struggle on your first try.

    Troubleshooting
    What to try if it won’t work.

    1.No AR content is popping up: have you registered an Aurasma account,and followed ‘MarkedByFate’? You must do this to access the content.
    2.No AR content is popping up: have you made sure all of the trigger image is in your viewfinder?
    3.No AR content is popping up on my kindle/e-ink device: please adjust your device screen brightness. If the screen is too bright or too dim, the image cannot be recognised by the app.
    4.I can’t hear any sound: check the icon. Only video/music AR content has sound.
    5.I can’t hear any sound, and it should be playing some: please ensure your volume is not muted,and turned up.
    6.The content keeps disappearing: ensure you keep the viewfinder focused on the trigger image so that the AR content will remain overlaid on your screen.If you move too far away from the trigger image, the AR content will disappear.Activate it again by re-scanning the trigger image.
    7.Can I access the eBook and the AR content on the same device? No. Aurasma uses your device camera, so you will have to read the book on a difference device to the device you are using Aurasma with.
    8.It’s just not working – I’ve tried everything: Please refer to the Aurasma help files,and contact their help desk if you are still having issues. Whilst extensive testing has been performed to ensure maximum device compatibility, regrettably not all devices may be compatible. Best compatibility will be found on pixel based screens with good brightness levels.


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    Oct 17 2017

    Dark Places #WEPFF #FlashFiction Blind Date Goes Dark

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    Dark Places WEPFF

    *Trigger warning: Horror. Violence and gore ahead!


    Dark Places #WEPFF #FlashFiction Blind Date Goes Dark @JLenniDorner

    Blind Date Goes Dark

    By J Lenni Dorner




    ‘Twas the night of the blind date, when all through our dorm
    Every student was partying, as was the norm.
    Some neckties now hung on doorknobs with ease,
    As a request to all for privacy, please.
    My roommate has nestled into a sweater of red;
    Visions of dancing and kissing play in her head.
    I tighten my ‘kerchief, bought at the Gap;
    I wish I could skip this, and instead take a nap!
    When out in the hall we hear hoots and hollers,
    Might these be our gentlemen callers?
    Straight to the door my roommate flies like a flash,
    It opens, and I shutter, ready to throw-up on my sash.
    My date is the beast that once left me to die,
    As we’re introduced, I ask God, “Oh why?”
    When blinking my eyes won’t make him disappear,
    But wait! I do wonder, what have I now to fear?
    With a kind Uber driver so lively and quick,
    I knew in mere moments I’d play a mean trick.
    More vengeful than tigers, more clever than chimps,
    Let him whistle and shout, let them all get a glimpse.
    “So nice to meet you. Can we be alone, Ted?”
    Oh yes, my time’s come, and I’ll mess with his head.
    We go for a stroll, and climb the high wall!
    Now pushing him off, wouldn’t that just beat all?
    Watching him fall would not be enough,
    He needs to learn to not play so rough.
    To the haunted house atop the hill we do hike;
    With a house full of weapons, that’s where I’ll strike!
    My eyes must be twinkling, as I hear him say,
    “Are you sure you want to go into there, Mae?”
    Turning my head, my flashlight flicks off,
    “Join me inside. I swear it’ll payoff.”
    I undress as I walk, from shirt to my feet,
    leaving only the ‘kerchief as I head to a sheet;
    A pentagram and candles left by some hack,
    Makes a cover story that Ted died by magic that’s black.
    His eyes — how they widen! His neck, how it bleeds!
    The pin in my hair once again meets my needs!
    Drool drips from his mouth as I fill in the blanks,
    “You killed Maureen Fisher. This is my thanks.”
    I pick up a pipe and bash in his teeth,
    And by only moonlight, de-finger this beast;
    I smash his feet like his face, then start on his belly.
    I shake with a laugh; his last meal was p.b. and jelly.
    Next, I move on to his chubby, the one he used to destroy
    a sacred part of the Maureen-me with his evil ploy.
    Removing his eyes and burning his head,
    I’m so glad to know that he’s finally dead.
    He’ll speak no more words, this foul, lying, jerk,
    And harm no more girls; thanks to my work.
    I shove what remains of a fist up in his rear-end,
    Hopefully like that, for all eternity he’ll spend.
    Then I spring into scrubbing until all’s clean as a whistle,
    And re-dress in my clothing, once I’m free of his gristle.
    Now I can exclaim, on this blind date night —
    “Vengeful Death found a villain; he died in great fright!”




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    Word Count 554 : FCA




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