Saturday, June 28, 2014

Upcoming Events

There are two upcoming events to save the date for:

Signed Copy Giveaway

When: July 25-August 6th 2014
 Where: Marc's, in Medina Ohio (1041 North Court Street, Medina, OH 44256)
What: You can enter to win a signed copy of both books from either series (The Priestess Trilogy and Chronicles of Midgard) at the Customer Service counter at Marc's in Medina. Entries will be accepted through the period, and two winners (one for each series) will be chosen on August 6. For further details, please head on over to the Facebook page or call Marc's directly at (330) 722-3399.

Local Author Expo

When: Saturday, November 15th, 2014
I will be on hand at the local author expo hosted by Brunswick Library (located at 3649 Center Road, Brunswick, OH 44212) from 11am-2pm. This is a great time to meet other local authors as well as myself. i will have print copies of some of my books on hand for anyone interested in purchasing copies.
Questions about the event can be directed to the library itself at (440) 273-4150.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Easton, Maryland

I recently had the pleasure of traveling to Easton, Maryland for the wedding of my husband's cousin. It is a beautiful little town, truly, although very very pricey. We arrived an hour and half later then we had planned due to a severe backup at the bridge crossing the Chesapeake Bay. Due to the rain and wind, the path across the bridge had been taken down by the number of lanes accessible, which is understandable. What we found irritable, however, was the fact that eleven lanes from the toll booths, were trying to merge into only two lanes. Hardly anyone in the inner two lanes were allowing others to merge, causing a major back-up and several annoyed drivers from the sounds of car horns that we heard. Upon arriving to Easton, we found our hotel in the middle of the town, which was lovely. Unfortunately, everything in town, save for the bars, all seemed to close at 5:30, even though it was a Friday, which left my husband and myself, who are not drinkers, with nothing to do except walk around the closed town.
 We stayed at the Tidewater Inn, a historic hotel which was by far the most beautiful hotel I have ever seen. The staff was friendly and the rooms, although rather small, were quite quaint. They gave off a wonderful old feeling, but the old, heavy doors were quite loud when closing them and more than once I was awoken in the night by other guests entering and leaving their rooms. Originally built in 1891 as a wood-framed building known as the Hotel Avon, the inn suffered destruction by fire in 1944. In 1947 a local businessman broke ground on a state of the art, world class hotel and on September 3, 1949 the Tidewater Inn opened. A lovely sheet containing the brief history of the hotel was given to me upon arrival, which stated that many famous faces have been welcome to the hotel, such as: Bing Crosby, the Williams sisters, Elvis Presley, and Elizabeth Taylor among others.

Our stay was very enjoyable. Our only complaint, however, was the prices. The hotel itself, although stunningly beautiful, was far too pricy. There was no free breakfast, only coffee and a newspaper (although they did offer a buffet, but it cost around $16 a person), no pool, and no workout room. Everything in town, pricey as well, opened late and closed early, leaving those visiting with nothing to do for a good chunk of the day. Channels available to watch on the televisions in the rooms were limited (ours actually wasn't working and maintenance had to fix it), the room was horribly cold from a non-adjustable AC, no mini fridges in the basic rooms, they had an ice machine however the only place to get water from aside from the bathroom since was the main lobby of the vending machine.

All in all, if I had to rate them, I would give them 4 stars out of 5 because although the hotel was lovely and historic, it really didn't offer much for the price. And now for some pictures!
Hotel courtyard (This angle of picture doesn't really do it justice)

Hotel Loby

Beautiful Staircase in the Lobby (they only go up to the second floor, then you have to take the elevator to the third and fourth floors)

View of the Courtyard from our room

Our room (my son took the bed on the right and enjoyed it greatly)

Hand napkins to dry hands off with. Very thick :)

Street signs nearby the hotel

Front entrance of the hotel

Looking down the stairs

Banquet room or ballroom, I'm not too sure.

View from our window at night.

Waking up the first morning. We forgot to close the blinds.

The Hunters' Tavern. Very delicious food.

More of the Hunters' Tavern

Bannings Tavern across the street from the hotel. I wanted to try their food so much, but never got the chance.

Fountain in the courtyard
Courtyard the morning we were leaving.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Books, books, books!

With LeVar Burton's kickstarter to bring back Reading Rainbow, I decided I would like to talk about some of my favorite books. I shall start with the most recent I've read:

The Giver by Lois Lowry
Genre: Dystopia

"Jonas' world is perfect. Everything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community. When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now, it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back."

Recently my husband and I were at the movie theater and saw a preview for The Giver. For years he's been commenting upon and quoting this book, a book that he read back in middle school and still remembers. Interested, I picked up the book and gave it a read. I was not disappointed. Although it is aimed at young adults, the first of it genre to target children and teens, it was an engrossing read. I would have finished it the first night if I hadn't needed to go to work the next day. The future we are presented with, how normal it is to Jonas and how much you begin to question alongside him, makes you hope that one day this book does not speak true. I highly recommend reading this book.

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
Genre: Urban Fantasy

"Under the streets of London there's a place most people could never even dream of. A city of monsters and saints, murderers and angels, knights in armour and pale girls in black velvet. This is the city of the people who have fallen between the cracks. Richard Mayhew, a young businessman, is going to find out more than enough about this other London. A single act of kindness catapults him out of his workday existence and into a world that is at once eerily familiar and utterly bizarre. And a strange destiny awaits him down here, beneath his native city: Neverwhere."

Another book suggested by my husband and one that inspired me to want to try my hand at urban fantasy instead of flat out fantasy. Upon opening this book, I quickly found that I was drawn in, following Richard and Door's ever move, wondering what would happen next, absolutely hating Mr. Vandemar and Mr. Croup, and curious of lie around the corner. You can imagine the great sadness I faced when I loaned the book out to a friend never to see it again. I really wished I could learn more about Door and her family, wished she could have a book all her own. All in all, it was a highly intriguing read.

Dies the Fire by S.M. Stirling
Genre: Dystopia

"Michael Havel was flying over Idaho en route to the holiday home of his passengers when the plane's engines inexplicably died, forcing a less than perfect landing in the wilderness. And, as Michael leads his charges to safety, he begins to realize that the engine failure was not an isolated incident.Juniper Mackenzie was singing and playing guitar in a pub when her small Oregon town was thrust into darkness. Cars refused to start. Phones were silent. And when an airliner crashed, no sirens sounded and no fire trucks arrived. Now, taking refuge in her family's cabin with her daughter and a growing circle of friends, Juniper is determined to create a farming community to benefit the survivors of this crisis.But even as people band together to help one another, others are building armies for conquest…"

Dies the Fire is a book that really makes you wonder "what if." Suggested to me by a friend, I decided to give it a try. It was the first book I ever read in the dystopia genre and it had me hooked. It brought to question if I was faced with a similar situation, what would I do? How would I survive. It was the first book to interest me in the genre and made me want to try me hand at it. I was not entirely fond of Juniper's character, but I did enjoy reading Mike's (oddly enough my friend who suggested Dies the Fire is also named Mike). If technology as we know it was to suddenly stop working with no means to fix it, what would you do? My only main complaint is how fire and other burnable matter, such as gun powder, as well as hydraulic pressure was also affected.

The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander
Genre: Fantasy

"Taran dreams of adventure, but nothing exciting ever happens to an Assistant Pig-Keeper—until his pig runs away. A chase through the woods leads Taran far from home and into great danger, for evil prowls the land of Prydain. With a collection of strange and wonderful friends whom he meets on his journey, Taran finds himself fighting so that good may triumph over evil, and so that his beloved home will not fall to a diabolical fiend."

This book series, The Chronicles of Prydain, is the reason I write fantasy. One day years ago while at the local library, I borrowed this book. Before I knew it, I was hooked. I ended up borrowing the following four books in the series, reading them all in a span of a few days. And it didn't end there. I began borrowing several fantasy books by various authors and found my home. It was then that my love of fantasy and the desire to write that genre was born. Disney made a movie based loosely (and I use that term generously) of this book and the following book, The Black Cauldron. That movie by no means does this books justice, especially the Princess Eilonwy of the red-gold hair. Although aimed at a younger audience, it is a wonderful read--if you don't mind stumbling over the Welsh character and place names.

The Call of Cthulhu by H.P. Lovecraft
Genre: Horror

"This selection of stories ranges from early tales of nightmares and insanity such as 'The Outsider' and 'The Rats in the Walls', through the grotesquely comic 'Herbert West – Reanimator' and 'The Hound', to the extra-terrestrial terror of 'The Call of Cthulhu', which fuses traditional supernaturalism with science fiction. Including the definitive corrected texts, this collection reveals the development of Lovecraft's mesmerizing narrative style and establishes him as a hugely influential – and visionary – American writer."

In all honesty, I am not a fan of horror, but my husband suggested this book and one story within in particular: The Call of Cthulhu. Lovecraft's play with words allowed me to step in the main characters shoes and he searches from answers that he really doesn't want answers to. However short it may be, The Call of Cthulhu gained a major fan base with plush toys, YouTube videos, and even songs, my favorite being Hey There Chtuhulhu. Fans of horror, if you have not read this short story or the others in the collection, please check them out. 

Have a favorite book you suggest or would like to share? comment below and let me know! I'm always looking to add to my to read list!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014


As this blog transitions from being a makeshift website into an actual blog, I thought I would share some thoughts. (I plan on using this blog, once the website is up and running, as a way to express the challenges face by a "part-time" author, as well as sharing random artwork and other musings).

Being a part-time author as well as part-time retail worker and full time wife and mother, I often find myself getting into writing slumps pretty often. I don't have a proper writing space, just a chair in the living room beside a table in which all my book notes are kept. Although I know I should go to another room in the house for at least an hour for some uninterrupted writing time, I feel as if I would in turn be ignoring my husband and son. And so I find myself easily distracted. Lately my distractions center around Minecraft, which we bough our son not too long ago. It is a curse because I will lose hours to it building stuff, but in a sense I can see where it could possibly be beneficial. I can essentially build a house or even entire town that my characters could visit. It could serve as a visual to aid in describing where they are. All in all, I will need to figure out a happy medium, I suppose.

Sitting down today, I realized that I have far too many projects that I want to work on. I have an entire journal dedicated to new novel ideas that I want to write. However, I realize that I have two important projects that require my attention foremost. The third Priestess Trilogy book still needs to have its revisions made so that it can be re-released and the third installment of the Chronicles of Midgard really needs to be worked on. I started it on December 24, 2011 and now, two and a half years later, it continues to sit on the second chapter awaiting completion.

Upon realizing this, I opened the file to work on, although I have been interrupted numerous times in my thought process by my husband and son. I would like fans of the series (and of Ril in particular, lol), to know that I will be working on it again intermittently alongside Eclipse, book three of The Priestess Trilogy. The series has not been forgotten, but will also not be ready for release this year as I had previously hoped. 

Once my new website is up and running, the tabs at the top of the page for the books will disappear, but I will have a link to the website itself for easy access to my books. I hope everyone looks forward to the blog post that come soon and enjoy that little bit of randomness that may ensue!