Posted in book review, ebook, inspiration, inspirational, reading

Book Review: Digging Deep Within

Digging Deep Within: A Story of Courage and Liberation by B.W. McKay is available at Amazon in paper back and on Kindle.

I have been picking some indie authors to read and review their books, and when this title was suggested to me I wasn’t sure if I would like it or not. It did take a few chapters for me to get into the book, but about a third of the way through, I found myself captivated by the life and circumstances of Corey Brookshire.

This book follows the story of a black man from Washington D.C. who struggles to become a success at his current job, but quickly realizes that the job of his dreams isn’t what he wanted. He does a lot of soul searching to discover more about himself and how to come to terms with some significant life events. As the story closes, Corey has to make some tough choices about his future.

I really found this story to be incredibly heart-felt and uplifting as I followed Corey through his struggles. It reminded me so much of some of my own and how I’ve tried to find ways to heal. Corey didn’t shy away from the hard stuff as he sought healing. I found that the most inspirational. It’s not easy to face the dark parts of ourselves. It’s so refreshing to see Mr. McKay tackle such a tough subject, and in doing so encouraging other people to heal themselves too.

If you are looking for an inspirational and uplifting story, this is the book for you!

Posted in blog, book review, The Writer's Toolbox, writing

New Blog Design, New Pages, and A New Offer!

Hello All!

You ever have that moment when you look at your work and you realize that it kind of sucks and it needs a complete makeover? Well, that’s what happened with this blog. I was looking through my blog in June, especially some of my older posts, and knew I needed to spend the time making my blog better and more accessible. I had almost three hundred posts that spanned about nines years, which many of them weren’t read much because no one knew about them.

I have been hard at work for the last month doing a complete blog redesign, which included going through every single post I’ve ever written. I ended up deleting over a hundred posts (because they really were that bad, or just not worth keeping), and then edited and organized about a hundred and thirty more, and I still have about thirty or so waiting to be redone completely and reposted at some point down the road.

Another major thing I did was to create two new pages. One called The Writer’s Toolbox and the other Book Reviews. Oh and yes, I did a redesign of the blog’s look too. Yay!

The Writer’s Toolbox is basically a complied list of posts dedicated solely to writing. The page is broken down into 6 categories, A Writer’s Life, Writer’s Block, Boosting Creativity, How to Write, Editing, and Other Writing Stuff. This is meant to be a writing resource page for myself and any other writers who want to use it. I want to start creating more writing based posts, and when I do, they too will be added to the the Writer’s Toolbox.

Book Reviews is a list of reviews I’ve done over the years. I also want to start doing more book reviews. My goal is to do about one a month. I am specifically looking to help out other indie or self-published authors. If you have a book that’s science fiction, fantasy, supernatural, or steam punk (but I’m also open to any other stories with good character and plot), then contact me with a short blurb about your story and a link where I can buy it. I will do a review here on my blog and in other places that your book is listed online (Amazon, Goodreads, Smashwords, ect.).

Note: I will only be able to review as time allows, so if I get a lot of requests for a review I may only be able to do a few.

These are the changes I have made so far, but there will be more to come. More news on that as I have time to implement them. Right now I’m feeling a huge accomplishment just from all the redesigning, reediting, and reorganizing. Whew! You’re welcome!

Posted in book review, books, read, reading

Book Review: Misfit Mage

Misfit Mage Book 1 of the Fledgling God Series by Michael Taggart is available on Kindle.

I recently read this book and absolutely fell in love with it, and I wanted to share it here. It’s a paranormal story like you’ve never seen before. Michael Taggart weaves a story that is unique and fun. It is dark, but so much humor I was laughing through large parts of the book. I love how much creativity this book has, and I’ll remember the characters always.

The main character is Jason who has just discovered he is a supernatural through a major life altering event. His world is turned upside down when he realizes he can do magic, and that magic really is a thing. Along the way he makes amazing friends who feel more like family, and meets a man who puts his other lovers to shame.

Jason quickly discovers his limits in magic, but also finds places he excels at. He also realizes how dangerous the magic world is and how much he needs to catch up for he gets himself killed. But he is a problem solver with an abundance of creativity. Some of his solutions are amazing to behold (and super funny too)!

If you are looking for a humorous book with dark and deep undertones, then pick this up immediately. You won’t be sorry!

Posted in book review, book spotlight, books, hooked on books, inspiration, inspirational, read, reading, the writing journey

Discovering a New Perspective: The Four Agreements

My life has recently gone through some major changes (very good changes), and will be going through more in the near future. A large contributing factor of that is a change of perspective that I have gradually come to. I believe this has happened through many avenues that has taken a long time to evolve, which has been a slow, painful, yet enlightening path. Even though it has been slow coming up out of the mire of negativity that I had been entombed in, there have been a few key pieces that when snapped into place have catapulted me into a faster evolution. One of these key pieces was reading this fascinating book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz.

I purchased this book on a high recommendation of a friend. I took it with me last spring when my husband and I got away for a week in a cozy cabin in the mountains. One of the things I really enjoyed doing on that trip was cuddling up near the fireplace and reading. While I did bring another book to read as well, this was my book of choice. It fascinated me and stretched my mind in such a way that I simply could not put it down.

Continue reading “Discovering a New Perspective: The Four Agreements”

Posted in author, basics of plot, better writing, book review, book spotlight, building plot, first draft, good writing, how to write, learning about writing, learning to write, novel, novel writing, outline, plot, plotting, plotting a novel, plotting a story, The Writer's Toolbox, the writing journey, the writing process, writing, writing better, writing book, writing craft

Plotting Your Novel by Writing from the Middle

As a writer, I am always learning. I think that’s what I love most about writing––the learning never stops. I am either learning something new about myself and writing as I write, or I stumble across new information as I am looking to learn more about writing. This time it was the latter. Recently on Twitter, I ran across a book recommendation for plotting that I loved so much I had to share it here.

Write Your Novel From The Middle: A New Approach for Plotters, Pantsers and Everyone in Between by James Scott Bell is must read for anyone serious about writing. This book goes into detail about why writers should start from the middle of a story instead of the beginning or end (who would of thought!). And how finding a character’s “mirror moment” is essential to true character development.

I definitely believe character development is a key element in a story. The more a reader can relate with a character and feel for a character’s journey, the better the book becomes. And this method certainly will help with that!

This book also helped me realize that I’m a Tweener (I always thought myself a straight up Pantser). I do love writing by the seat of my pants. That’s how I get some of my best ideas, but I also know where I’m writing too as well. I have a loose idea of events I need to reach and about where I need those events to happen. Also, I find already knowing my ending is a necessity to writing, even if I don’t know specifics. Just having a good idea of where I need to stop gives me a clear goal to reach for. But after reading Bell’s book I have an even better way to approach my writing. Start in the middle and Pants my way to the beginning and end. I’ll still have those events and goal posts to reach, but I think it will be far easier to get there knowing exactly what the character’s journey should entail.

And you know this book couldn’t have come at a better time for me. I’ve become somewhat stalled on writing the first draft of my second novel. I think this technique will get things churning quite nicely. Thanks Bell. 🙂

 

Posted in Apex, Apex Publications, book review, books, fiction

Book Review: Machine by Jennifer Pelland

Machine by Jennifer Pelland is available on Kindle and on Paperback.

13418849Want to take a walk on the wild side? Then Jennifer Pelland’s novel Machine is for you, because that is exactly what Pelland’s main character Cecil does in this delightfully depicted science fiction world.

In this novel technology has advanced to the point of creating artificial replicant bodies for those who are unfortunate enough to find themselves with serious injuries, or illness that can’t be cured right away. Cecil just got her new body after being diagnosed with a low priority incurable disease. She decides to copy her consciousness to a “new” body and wait for the cure. But Cecil’s life takes a sudden and horrific blow when she wakes up in her machine body to find out wife Rivka has divorced her during the copying process.

Continue reading “Book Review: Machine by Jennifer Pelland”

Posted in book review, books, fiction

Series Review: Craig Johnson’s Longmire Mysteries Books 1-6

The Cold DishDeath Without CompanyKindness Goes UnpunishedAnother Man’s MoccasinsThe Dark HorseJunkyard Dogs all by Craig Johnson is available on Kindle, Hardcover, and Paperback.

51iVAeShFCL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_This Friday, I’m doing something a little different. I’m reviewing a series instead of just one book (because I didn’t want to sound too repetitive reviewing each book individually. I mean how many times can I say Craig Johnson is a super awesome writer? lol…).

I first heard of Walt Longmire as his TV persona in his namesake show Longmire broadcasted by A&E. I watched all 3 seasons in two weeks and was dying for more. I also found out A&E wasn’t picking the show back up and that got me upset since season 3 was left on a hell of a cliffhanger. But then Netflix came to save the day and picked up season 4 (whoot Netflix!).

Anyways, I say all this, because I was so impressed with the television show, I decided to read the books the series was based off. And so began my delightful journey through Craig Johnson’s amazing world.

Continue reading “Series Review: Craig Johnson’s Longmire Mysteries Books 1-6”