Guest author TB Markinson has stopped by for a chat!

Hello everyone! *waves* So I have managed to snag the ultra-talented TB Markinson for the day! I’m feeling pretty luck, I don’t mind saying. Not only is TB as sweet as pie and a whiz with a story, but she’s allowed me to review her novel, Marionette. My review is below. BUT FIRST—let’s see what TB is all about, shall we? TB, take it away!

Ever since the 6th grade I dreamed of being a writer. But I didn’t publish my first novel, A Woman Lost, until I was thirty-nine. So why the wait? Many reasons really. I’ve shared some of the reasons before on different blogs. Today I want to share another one of the reasons. I’m a writer—I’m always looking for excuses not to write.

Many years ago, when I was only eighteen, I went to several author events. One of the authors said something that alarmed me. I won’t name the author since she is still quite popular today. But I will share what she said. According to her, she doesn’t read books since she feels like it’s not fair to her fans. She’s afraid she’d become too engrossed in other novels and not write her own stories.

At first I was shocked. How can a writer not read? Then I was saddened. I love to write. But I’m a reader, first and foremost. I didn’t want to pursue a career that wouldn’t allow me to read. I live and breathe books. If I don’t have a book in my hands, I’m reading on my kindle, cell phone, or more recently listening to an audiobook every spare moment. I can’t get enough.

It was a few years after hearing this author talk when I realized that she was the odd man out. Many other authors who I’ve seen speak or read about are voracious readers. I was able to take a deep breath and relax. I didn’t have to give up my passion for reading to become a writer.

In fact, I believe the opposite. If you want to learn how to write, my advice is to read. Read a ton. That just doesn’t include classics or what many deem as ‘quality’ literature. I’ve learned something from every book I’ve read, even the really horrible ones. Actually, I seem to learn more from the horrible ones.

Don’t let others discourage you, even if they are successful in your field. Not everyone agrees on one method. My advice, find what works for you and stick with it. And no matter what, chase your dream. Regrets can be brutal.

Marionette Blurb:

Paige Alexander is seventeen and has her whole life in front of her. One day her girlfriend comes home to discover that Paige has slit her wrists. Paige isn't insane, but she acts like she is. Why?

After the incident, Paige agrees to go to therapy to appease her girlfriend, Jess. However, Paige doesn't believe that therapy will help her. She believes she's beyond help. Paige doesn't want to find herself and she doesn't want to relive her painful past in order to come to terms with it. What Paige wants is control over her life, which she hasn't had since her birth.

During her childhood, Paige is blamed for a family tragedy, when in fact, her twin sister, Abbie was responsible. Abbie doesn't come forward and Paige becomes the pariah of the family.


My review of Marionette:

Let me start off first by saying I was pleasantly surprised by "Marionette." I was expecting a lot of psycho-babble and tormented souls but what I got was a heartfelt journey of one Paige Alexander--rich girl with a lot of baggage. But instead of letting her baggage take over her life (and the plot), it was a refreshing change to watch her evolve. Character development is always important and often hard to tackle but Markinson accomplishes this with believable ease. It wasn't like, "Oh, I talked about my problems and now I'm cured." Oh no, far from that. Paige talked about her problems a little bit at a time and I think that helped her along with the reader understand exactly what was going on with her life.
I really enjoyed this book. The only part that I wasn't a huge fan of was the money/bookie angle--that's all I'm going to say because I don't want to spoil it for any of you. I thought that angle de-railed the story for a bit but then it jumped right back onto the tracks. It was satisfying to see Paige come into her own and as well as come to terms with the ugly truths about her family.
Cheers to Markinson. A truly great read.

About the Author:

T. B. Markinson is a 39-year old American writer, living in England, who pledged she would publish before she was 35. Better late than never. When she isn’t writing, she’s traveling around the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs in England, or taking the dog for a walk. Not necessarily in that order. She’s published Marionette and  A Woman Lost . 


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*Coming Soon! A review for A Woman Lost!*


The Aftermath....

....and so here we are, a week following YAFest 2014 and my throat is still sore. Now, I'm a talker but man, at these functions, there is NO telling how many people you'll actually meet until you look up and the line is going OUT THE DOOR!
I can't even begin to describe how much fun this event was. The Palmer Library in Easton, Pennsylvania is truly one of the best places on Earth to host this event....did I mention that the whole thing was free of charge?! It didn't cost anyone to get in the door and it didn't cost an author anything to sit and chat with all these wonderful kids (and adults) that came up to our tables. I was lucky enough to meet so many people of all ages, the youngest being so shy and awkward at first but then after a few moments, they completely light up...especially when they start talking about books!
Oh, glorious books!
And that wasn't even at the height of how many people showed up. I was tempted to start crowd-surfing! The volunteers had to practically climb over people to get where they had to go!
It was such a fun time. This event has grown so much since the first time it was held back in 2012. Here's hoping for another one next year!

Looks like that time of year again.....

  Enough said!
Myself and over 50 authors will be present with enticing books and swag! Don't miss out!