Young Adult Book Festival is One Week Away!

Hey gang! Exactly one week from today is the Young Adult Book Festival being held in Easton, Pennsylvania. If you're totally digging young adult books then stop on by! There will be books, baked goods, raffle drawings, prizes, authors, more books...did I mention the books? So come on over and get your read on! There will be over 30 authors present, including myself! It's being held at the Palmer Branch of the Easton Public Library in Easton, PA! Here's the link for more details:
I hope you can make it! It'll be too much fun!

Special guest author...Christine Hughes

Hey gang! I'm honored and thrilled to have fellow author, Christine Hughes, here on my blog today! Christine's young adult/paranormal novel is taking the world by storm and you would be seriously missing out on a fantastic story if you didn't get this book!

1. What’s the first thing you did when you received word you’d sold a book?
When I first received word of my impending contract from Black Opal Books, I pretty much called everyone I could think of and danced around the kitchen with my kids. My husband ran out and bought some wine and a bottle of champagne, which neither of us really drink. We popped the cork and drank the whole bottle sitting on the back deck dreaming and talking about the fact that one of my dreams was being realized. I still have that cork with the date written on it safely tucked away in my jewelry box.
2. What part of the book is the easiest for you to write? Why?
The middle of the book seems to be the easiest for me. I find more flow issues and errors in the beginning and closure needs towards the end. The middle seems to be my playground. I think it’s because, when I write, I have the story in my head but not necessarily how the story began and I always have trouble closing out and saying goodbye. I’m hoping to get started soon on a sequel to TORN. I think the characters have more to say and I haven’t really given them a proper goodbye yet.
3. What part of the book is the hardest for you? Why?
The hardest part of writing is crafting the beginning and closing out the end. I want the open to draw readers in and I want them to be able to let go at the end of the story. Funny enough, my husband and I have been noticing many of the TV shows we watch have that “hook” in the beginning, right before the opening credits and commercial. I am trying to incorporate more of that into my writing.
4. Who is your favorite character in your book and why?
I have a soft spot for all of my characters. Honestly, Sebastian is probably my favorite. He reminds me of a cross between chaos and beauty. He’s evil but it’s so natural for him to be so that he almost doesn’t necessarily “get it” that he’s so hated. He can’t quite understand it – he truly feels his calling is true.
5. If one of your books became a movie, which celebrity would you like to star as one of your heroines? Tell us about your heroine.
Samantha is a seventeen-year old girl who gets thrust into this battle between two factions of fallen angels. The Faithful, who work to atone for the sins of their fallen ancestors, and the Exiled, who revel in the sins of the fallen. It comes to light that not only was her father killed by the leader of the Exiled, she was betrayed by her best friend. And the little fact that part of her feeds on the darkness of the Exiled even though she knows she should follow the Faithful begins to change her into what she hates most. Candace Accola, from Vampire Diaries, would totally rock as Samantha. One can dream….
6. If one of your books became a movie, which celebrity would you like to star as one of your heroes? Tell us about your hero.
Oh my. I have done A LOT of thinking about this one…. Jesse Williams from Grey’s Anatomy is Sebastian! As a matter of fact, when I was describing him in the book, Jesse was who I was thinking of.
7. Do you eat comfort food when writing? If so, what food inspires your imagination?
 I drink a lot of coffee and of Earl Gray tea. I don’t eat much while I write. Regular meals kind of get thrown to the wayside when I’m in the zone. Thank goodness I have a husband and two kids or I probably would forget to make dinner.

8. What’s your strongest point as a writer?

I think my strongest point so far is the ability to see someone else’s point of view when it comes to my books. My beta readers have been fantastic with feedback and I’ve used quite a bit of it. My first round editor, Cora, also had some great suggestions and I found when I implemented them my writing was so much stronger. I can only hope that I’m this laid back when it comes to criticism of my books.
9. What genre would you like to try writing in but haven’t yet done so? Why?

I would love to write a psychological thriller or horror. Scary movies and psychological stuff really bugs me out and I’d like to try to get past it by writing about it. One of my favorite movies is The Shining by Stephen King. I bought the book years ago and it still sits in my house waiting for me to read it. I’ve been too scared to pick it up! Also any type of horror/psychological stuff that deals with religion creeps me out. The Exorcist, The First Power, The Omen….I can’t watch any of them. I don’t know what it is – creeptastic! Maybe if I tried to write one, I’d be able to watch one…hmmmm.

The following is an excerpt from Torn:
I knew it was dangerous, but the voice was so tempting...
Unable to speak, I wiped the beads of sweat from my forehead and looked around. I swung my head toward the window and peered outside, searching for the source of the taunting voice. Where was he? The sky had darkened significantly and just beyond the trees I saw a swirling shadow that seemed to pulse. The vegetation surrounding it had withered, becoming gray and lifeless as though the shadow had sucked up all of the energy. A faint hum filled the air, growing louder as the shadow pulsed faster.
       Samannnnnnthaaaa...It’s time. Join us.
“Where are you?” I could barely get the words out. “What do you want from me?” This voice had plagued me for months and I wanted to know for sure it was Sebastian, yet the thought of finally knowing, finally seeing him, scared me more than the uncertainty.
      The voice chuckled. Join us and I will show you everything.
      “Never,” I whispered. “Never. My father died protecting me. I will never come to you.”
Again, a high-pitched and foul laugh rang in my head, making it spin. Dark clouds rolled ominously overhead, the wind picked up and the dull humming became inescapable white noise. Silly girl. You will come to us. You will make the choice. It is your destiny.
Despite my protest, I stepped toward the window then, leaning over the sink, I reached up to unlock it. My reflection was unrecognizable in the glass. My hair was wild and my eyes were huge and black as shadows emanated from within me. Whatever was out there was reaching for me with ghostly fingers, and as I opened the window, a dark mist snaked toward the house. I closed my eyes in giddy anticipation of the unknown.
 That is a great excerpt! You can find Torn at the following links:

Thanks so much for visiting, Christine! Much luck and success with Torn! 

Chat at Christine Hughes' Blog

Hey everyone! I'm over at the blog of Christine Hughes, author of Torn. Come on by and say hi! There might be snacks available....


Simply Stacie Review of Traffic Jam

Hey guys! Below you'll find a link to a review by Kellie of the "Simply Stacie" website! I'm so excited!!!

Traffic Jam Book Launch!!

Hey gang! I am so excited! I nailed down a date for a book launch at Booktowne Store in Manasquan, NJ!! There will be signings, discussions, laughter, and good times to be had on August 11th from 1-3pm! My young adult book, Traffic Jam, will be available to purchase and guess what's even better? The beach is nearby!!! What's a better combination than the beach and a good book? Hope to see you there!

Here is the address: 171 Main Street, Manasquan, New Jersey 08736
Phone: 732-722-7255

Blog stop at Liv!

Hey there gang! I'm over at Liv Rancourt's blog today talking about those dreaded years of high school! So stop on by and have a little read, won't you?

Beautiful picture...

Hi gang! Ever come across a picture that feels like someone just kicked you in the chest? Well, that's the feeling I got when I first saw this photo, taken by a good friend of mine, Jason Schroeck. He's a freelance photographer, graphic designer, web designer, oh good Lord, the list goes on and on! But if this picture kicked you in the chest as well then check out his website:

His photographs are amazing. There's everything from crazy city life to the slow crawl of the country side. You'll most likely get kicked a few more times. Actually you might get a couple of broken ribs or a fractured collar bone...

Traffic Jam's everywhere!!!

Ha ha! No, not those kind of traffic jams--the ones where you sit in an endless line of idling cars with no hope of getting to your destination within a reasonable time frame. The traffic jam I'm talking about is my young adult novel of the same name! And it's available on Pinterest:
Check it out, folks! You won't be disappointed!