Friday, August 4, 2017

IT'S ALIVE!!!

Things have changed a lot in the last week...

I finally got so fed up with the laptop that I decided it was going to be either get the old 160 GB drive running or get a brand new one somehow. 

I contacted Microsoft, and they gave me instructions on how to convert an old drive to GPT to support Windows 8.l. 

It took less than a minute to wipe the drive and convert it.

Seriously.

Within half an hour, I was setting up the main administrative account on the computer (mine), and installing some of the games we love. 

My internet security provider is back on the computer.... 200 MB later. 

It's great to be back on the desktop again, even if it is going crazy with getting updates and scans almost every day. 

Unfortunately, Office 7 is not working on the desktop system, and Office 2016 has not arrived yet, so I'm stuck working off the laptop or not working at all. Since using the laptop drives me bonkers, I've decided not to work on the manuscripts until it is here and I have it installed on my computer. 

I'm okay, for now. It's summertime and I haven't really had much of a chance to work on anything anyway. I think this is the universe's way of telling me I need a break, a long one.

I still have a few more things to install - think music from CDs in the little car that I hadn't backed up on the external drive yet - but so far things are working great and the computer isn't skipping or anything else like it was when it still had the old 1 TB drive into it.

Yeah, the drive is only 1/9 what the original one in this one was but still, it works and it's a good drive. It has maybe 60 GB worth of stuff on it. I didn't add all of my old digital camera pics to it, to save room, I can get them off the external if I need any of them. Same goes for my banners, etc. 

It's great broadcasting from the desktop again. 

Now if only Office 2016 would arrive so I can get back to work... Tee hee.

Have a great weekend everyone!

I leave you with one of my favorite songs of all time, STRICKEN by Disturbed. Enjoy!


Friday, July 28, 2017

Crazy Summer

This summer has been interesting so far...

My mom was visiting my aunt and uncle the first week of July, so of course, we went to see her a few times.

My aunt has a pool, and one of my mom's favorite activities is to go swimming. I finally have swimwear that fits me right - well the top does, the bottoms need to be brought in a lot, more on that later! - so we went into the pool with her.

The one evening wasn't so bad, except the mosquitoes were out something fierce. We were in for about half an hour or so before we decided it was enough.

That Saturday afternoon, though............

Stupid me forgot to put on waterproof sunblock or wear a t-shirt like I normally do. It was cloudy, and in my haste to get there on time, I forgot to pack something.

I wound up regretting it later that evening. We had spent an entire hour in the pool and of course, me without protection from the sun meant fried skin. I had a horrible sunburn that went from the top part of my back, around to cover both shoulders, the nape of my neck and the top of my boobs.

I was so sore I was in tears. But, that was my own stupidity.

Thank heavens for a certain kind of skin cream and aloe vera gel. Between that and putting cold compresses on the burned areas, it took away most of the pain and I was able to move without wanting to cry.

It took an entire week to heal enough to start peeling, after it blistered. Yeah, it was a really bad one. The worst one I've had since my early 20s. Normally I'm so darn careful because sunburns hurt like merry old hell, and I don't tan, I fry. Think redder than a cooked lobster after 20 minutes or less in the sun. Thank you Scandinavian genes....

In other news, I've been trying to get some work done on "Dream On" and other manuscripts I have saved on the portable hard drive. I wouldn't mind getting at least another standalone story published somehow sometime soon, and since none of the finished drafts are up to publishing standards period, I have a lot of work ahead of me.

Things would be a lot smoother if I was using my desktop system though...

A couple of weeks ago, I noticed things were slow, and the computer wasn't working right at all. I thought it was a virus, so I set it aside while Son and I went to see my mom.

Let's just say I had a hell of a time getting it shut down once we got home again.

When I went to turn it back on to do some diagnostics, Windows wouldn't load, and it would not let me into the Boot Menu.

This led me to wondering if it was a fault in the hard drive's software itself, not a virus. Like a few files got corrupted somehow somewhere along the way and it messed up the entire hard drive.

It finally tried a repair diagnostic, and I let it go.

Six hours later, I wound up pulling the plug.

Diagnosis: Full system failure, due to a faulty hard drive.

In other words, the hardware itself is no good. Whatever was on that drive is now gone for good, what wasn't saved that is, and that wasn't much... Just a few things I was messing around with on GIMP and a few downloaded photos for various things (desktops) that I got back.

I've been using an Acer laptop a friend of mine gave me a couple of years ago... It was originally set up for VISTA, but now has Windows 7 on it. It's a gorgeous computer. My main problems with it is that it has only 1 GB of RAM and Office 7 on it... I'm used to 8 GB of RAM and Office 2013... And a regular keyboard, not the flat keys on a laptop keyboard.

So...... What's going on with the desktop?

Nothing much right now. I do have a hard drive that works - it's from my old Acer computer, the one that decided it was going to keep frying video cards after the one on the motherboard got cooked during a power outage. That one was retired in 2013, and I purchased the Windows 8.1 computer then. It's only a 160 GB drive - compared to the 1 TB drive that was originally in the current desktop system - but it will do for now... I can easily run things from the portable hard drive if needed.

The drive has VISTA on it - that's what I was using the last year or so I was using the Acer system - so it needs to be rebuilt from the OS up, with  Windows 8.1.

I have a copy of that on disk, BUT there's a problem...

It has a different file system formatted on it. Windows 8.1 needs a GPT file system, while VISTA has a completely different one. Now this drive IS compatible with Windows 8.1, so I'm fine there. I just need to talk to a tech about how to format it... Which I'll be doing early next week. Or I hope to do it at least. Things have been so crazy the last while with everything else going on, I'm lucky to remember to get dressed every morning.

So until things are straightened out with the desktop system, I'll be broadcasting to all of you via the laptop, or if you follow my Facebook Fan Page (link to the left of the blog entries!) via my smartphone as well.

It's times like this that I'm grateful I'm so damn meticulous - (anal?) - about backing up my manuscripts and pretty much everything else on my computer... One never knows when something is going to die on them.

I will be upgrading a few things once this stupid computer is rebuilt... Office 2016, anyone? Drool!!!

Quick note about my wellness journey:

I am up to walking a full MILE each time I hit the track! (6 1/3 laps, or 1.6 km) I feel great! It takes me about 20 minutes to do the entire thing, and that's not too darn shabby. I always carry my phone with me, to listen to music while I'm zipping around, and to keep track of my time each lap on the clock app. It keeps me motivated to keep going!

And...

I was weighed about 2 weeks ago...

I'm DOWN ANOTHER THREE POUNDS! *happy dance*

I can tell I am still shrinking, because my jeans are getting looser, and my capris almost fell down the other day when I reached up to get something from a shelf in the bathroom.

I am feeling soooooo much better than I did even two months ago. I feel like myself again.

I am feeling so much like myself that I even went bowling with the guys AFTER I did my laps at the track! I only played 2 strings compared to their 3 but it was still bowling, and tons of fun.

It wore me out but it was worth it.

I hope all of you are having an amazing summer.... And if you are an author like I am, you do not have the hardware problems I've been having. It stinks!

And please, don't be stupid like I was and get a sunburn folks. It wasn't fun!

I leave you with some photos of Crescent Beach.... Have a great weekend everyone!

Moonlight hitting the water.

Seagull!

High tide... It's so high that you can't take your car on the beach at all without it getting soaked by salt water!


Wild pink rose - my favorite flower!


Information about the birds of Crescent Beach.

A prop job plane flying low over the beach and the LaHave Islands.

The government wharf on Bush Island.
One of the many jellyfish we see washed up on shore on the beach, this happens often.
This greeted me when I came downstairs this morning... Hello MONITOR KITTEH!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Sesquicentennial

HAPPY 150th BIRTHDAY, CANADA!
(Bonne Fete, Canada!)




Sesquicentennial means 150th anniversary. Since my beloved nation is 150 years young today, I thought it would work as a blog title.

Things have been hectic with the end of the school year and just life in general. 

Son's last day of school was yesterday, and I didn't know that they had an awards ceremony for students in grades 5 through 8 who excelled in academics and sports during the closing. 

I only found out when Son's grade six teacher called me and invited me to attend.

You see, my son got an award yesterday, Greatest Improvement Overall for his class. He, along with a few of his pals from grades six, seven and eight, got the awards because they went from struggling to doing an amazing job in their studies. 

When Son's name was called, he didn't walk to the stage like every other student - he RAN! He was so excited that he was jumping up and down and hugging a lot of his fellow winners. 

He won a medal with the school emblem on it. It is gorgeous, and it'll be hanging in his room over his bed when we get around to putting it there. 

I'm really proud of him. His grade six teacher said he's a brilliant kid, he just needs a little guidance and a reminder now and then... He was also a joy to teach and have in her classroom this year. 

I've learned that exams are only given to Grades 8s, 10s, and 12s... So he's safe for another year! (THANK HEAVENS!)

He's now home for the summer, and we're making plans to do a few things. He wants to go swimming at the lifestyle centre, play video games at home, as well as go bowling in town, and take the occasional day trip.

I am still going to the track, but not as frequently as I would like. Son doesn't like the walking bit of it, so it's best I go without him. I am getting faster at doing a km, and I've even upped the laps to five (1250 m) a few times. I'm slowly getting more and more used to it. 

I'm not as heavy as I thought... I was weighed during an appointment with the centre that helps people who have that lifelong condition and I'm about 30 pounds less than expected. I still have a long way to go, but the amount I want to lose seems reasonable right now... It's a lot but it IS possible!

As for the writing, I'm not going to write at all this summer. I've decided that I have to clean up Dream On before I go near Fourteen and its rounds of cleaning, then start writing it again. I'm thinking a full rewrite may be needed. 

I don't know, I'll just have to see how I feel in September, or when Dream On is finally in the hands of my beta team. 

I may not post a lot over the next few weeks - real life and summertime fun with my family will probably dominate July anyway, if not August.

I wish all of you an amazing summer... Don't forget to wear sunblock if you're going outside a lot!

In the spirit of the day, I leave you with a song by one of my favorite Canadian bands, RUSH.... CLOSER TO THE HEART.


Monday, June 12, 2017

Heat

Yes, I've changed the look of my blog again. Purple and black together is my favorite color combination, and they've become my signature colors as an author. I wear mostly those two colors too, I even have purple laces and black sneakers, as well as the black hoodie with my pen name embroidered on it - which was a gift from my husband's mother and youngest brother.

ANYWAY...............

Summer is officially here! The lupines and lilacs are in bloom, the black flies are fading into mosquitoes, and the humidity is through the roof. The air conditioner in the bedroom has been running all night too, and the fans around the house are set up and running full time.

Despite the heat and humidity, I've been plodding along in the first round of edits in "Dream On". It's not going that well. It needs a *lot* of work, from areas that are too wordy, to others that are so bare bones, one doesn't know what's really going on. My writing itself is inconsistent, it's all over the place. I know I can do better than this - think Stricken - so it's really annoying me.

It may need a full overhaul before my betas even see it.

If they ever see it. I have to finish this once over, and see how I feel after the next round of edits later this summer.

Fourteen is still on the "shelf" right now. I haven't opened that one in a couple of weeks, it's been determined that I am still burned out somewhat. I'm not allowed writing until I either figure out how to fix that one, or I have a new idea hit me. Hopefully I'll be able to start making notes in a couple of weeks.

We have this week and next week of regular classes for my son. This is the last year he'll be going every day right up till the end. Next year is the start of exams... Which I am not looking forward to. He hates tests, and does better if the questions are given to him one at a time unless it's math. Then he excels and really shows off.

I'm still going to the track, although things kind of went sideways for a bit. I wound up in the ER recently, due to food poisoning. I don't remember much of the first three hours or so after the intake and getting an IV put in (I was dehydrated) but the last two and a half hours are clearer. It was the sickest I had ever been in my life. Not even chicken pox topped that, and I had a horrible case of it when I was twelve.

I am back to my normal, silly self, after a full week of recovering. I wound up sleeping the entire day after coming home from the hospital (they didn't admit me) and rested a lot after that.

I am still doing a full kilometre (2/3 mile - four laps of 250 each) when I go to the track. I will be upping the distance slowly over time, once I don't get winded from what I'm doing now, or any weight loss has become noticeable. My clothing is starting to loosen a bit, but that could be me losing a lot of water weight too. I've cut out a lot of salt again, and that's always a huge help.

I'm also on a new medication for my lifelong condition. It's helping so far! I'm feeling a lot more like my old self on it, which is awesome... And things are finally starting to balance out again. I love that stuff.

My plans for the summer? I hope to get "Dream On" completely cleaned up at some point, and maybe with a little luck, figure out how to fix Fourteen. There is a solution to both, I haven't found them yet, that's all.

I will also be going to the track at least two or three times a week, either with the guys or on my own, and with a little luck, Son and I may go swimming at the lifestyle centre's pool a few times. Swimming is a great cardio exercise, but for me it's also fun. If I had a choice, it would be all swimming or bowling for an exercise regime. Since I can't do it all of the time, walking at the track it is.

Have a lovely week everyone!

I leave you with one of my favorite songs by LIVE, "I Alone". Enjoy!


Monday, May 22, 2017

Journeys

It's been a weird couple of weeks at the Allison residence...

Saturday was "ROAD TRIP!" day... Hubby, Son and I drove along the shore toward the more westerly parts of the province, and finally wound up in Barrington Passage, and Cape Sable Island - one of the most southern parts of Nova Scotia, and therefore Canada, second only to Ontario's peninsula that is nestled between Lakes Ontario and Erie to the east and Lake Huron to the west.

I got a lot of great pictures, including the new profile photo here... That one was taken at Hunt's Point Beach in Queens County. I'll share a few in a bit.

I've been getting out of the house more. A lot more. I've started going to the local lifestyle centre, to use their walk track. I've been doing a full four laps of 250 metres - 1 full kilometre (2/3 mile) - in one session. It goes around the top of the skating/hockey arena in the complex, which is awesome. It's climate controlled, and cool even in the summertime. Best of all? NO BUGS. I can do as many laps as I please without getting bitten or stung by some bug that decided I was in their way. I can do my kilometre in about 13 minutes walking normally, 11 if I really rush it.

Since I sprained my ankle last Tuesday, I'm not allowed doing my laps around the track until it's better, and that's taking a while. *SIGH* So the alternative is swimming, which involves the whole body, not just the legs. It won't bother my ankle either - it will probably strengthen it, if memory serves.

I'm just going nuts not being able to go. I'm starting to enjoy it and seeing if I can beat my record. Blah.

At least the ankle isn't broken. That's a silver lining.

As for the writing, I've been given strict orders to take a break from it. I've been told I'm starting to burn out... Plus I'm also agitated that it's not being written as fast as I want it to be, so it's either take a break or lose it completely.

I didn't even open Word the last two Fridays. I went to the track one writing day, spent part of the day in town, and spent last Friday upstairs reading in front of the air conditioner with my foot propped up with ice packs.

I'm over halfway through my goal of reading 25 books this year. At this rate, I may have that beaten by the time August rolls around......

Since I want to keep my brain into writing somewhat, I've been looking through the rough draft I finished back in February. I'm thinking I can get a jump on getting that one's revisions started so I can get it to the betas sooner rather than later.

Photos from our trip to Barrington Passage...

Hunt's Point Beach, Queens County, NS.

Summerville Beach Provincial Park, Queens County, NS.

Lockeport Beach, Shelburne County, NS.

Path along the dunes at North East Point Beach, Cape Sable Island, NS.

Cape Islander fishing boat on its way toward Barrington Passage, NS.
Taken on the Causeway between Barrigton Passage and Cape Sable Island.

White sand glistens in the sun on North East Point Beach, Cape Sable Island, NS.
Barrington Passage, Shelburne County, NS.
The crazy, vertically challenged geeky rocker chick with a dirty mind.
Taken on Hunt's Point Beach, Queens County, NS.
As you can see, we had a great trip. I was exhausted by the time we were on the highway for home, and slept most of the way, but it was worth it. I had forgotten just how gorgeous the scenery is along that part of our amazing little province, and I can't wait to go that way again.

I hope everyone has a great week... I leave y'all with one of my favorite Aerosmith songs of all time, "DREAM ON". Enjoy!


Monday, May 8, 2017

The Best Thing With Fries?

I used the title because it's something that's currently happening on my Facebook author profile right now - we're discussing what's best on French fries. I'm seeing a lot of the regular stuff - ketchup, mayonnaise, gravy, salt, pepper, and vinegar - but I'm also seeing a few things like honey-garlic sauce, sweet and sour sauce (my son loves that), ranch dressing and mustard, to name a few of the more exotic condiments. I'm considering trying a few of them sometime. I can have some fries, just not a lot. Too many carbs in them... Moderation is the key. ;)

I've been busy again - writing, editing, debating revisions, and promoting STRICKEN - so that's why I didn't post a blog entry last week. No new banners were created, although I'm starting to think I should make a few more, both with the paperback version and the e-book version visible... Possible photo shoot? I'm not sure.

Fourteen is coming along, even if the progress slowed down a bit. I think I have to do a few more revisions, like stretch out the time between things again... It's moving too fast, and I think I did something a little too EARLY... If y'all know what I mean. So I'll be looking at that this week or next week.

Things are going good. Word about Stricken is getting around, and people are showing more and more interest. I've noticed a lot of my local pals are getting the print on demand paperback version of it, and that makes me feel good... Even if they never read it. Just buying a copy to show their support is more than I can ask for... Thank you everyone!

Since Stricken is showing up on Goodreads, I finally broke down and signed up - as an author. I thought I may as well do it, it's another way to be more accessible to my readers and possible readers, plus it also helps promote the book, and any more I get published in the future. 

If you want to follow me on Goodreads, my author profile is here:


I've already answered a few of the general questions asked to all authors, but I'm also open to new questions from fans and followers at the moment... So if you're on there, feel free to ask me a question related to Stricken or one of my future books. 

I hope everyone's having a great May, and not getting eaten alive by bugs... It's not exactly nice out there in my area of Canada right now despite the sunshine and warm temps. Too many bugs in my opinion!

I leave y'all with "IMMORTALIZED", the title track from Disturbed's 2015 album... Enjoy!


Have a great week everyone! 

Monday, April 24, 2017

"She May Be Evil", STRICKEN on GoodReads and More!

It's been another one of "those" kind of weeks when you don't think your drunken squirrels are going to line up, but they actually do.

First of all, I would like to thank my favorite hockey team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, for a phenomenal season, and an amazing run in the playoffs. They may have been knocked out in the first round, but at least they made it this year... A year or two ahead of schedule. That's fine. I was so happy to see them do it, and prove they have the firepower to make it in... Washington was a tough team this year, and I think my boys did a wonderful job getting two games out of the six they played, one in Washington.

Enjoy the off season guys, you deserve it!

Writing update...

Last week wasn't a good week for me. My lifelong conditions acted up big time... But I still managed to get another 3K added to the current WIP. I'm now into Chapter Nine, and closing in on not one but *two* huge key scenes for the mains.

It's still almost writing itself. I'm also having a lot of fun finding out what flies out of my fingers as I type, because sometimes I don't plan on the "filler"... I just write. If it's crap, it's crap. I can always revise it!

STRICKEN is now available pretty much everywhere you can purchase e-books. It's available for Kindle, Nook, Mobipocket, Kobo, and a lot of other e-book formats.

Here's where I know it's available - other than Amazons around the world and eXtasy Books' site.....

Apple iTunes (iPad/iPhone)
Barnes and Noble (NOOK)
Google Books (various formats)
Google Play (various formats)
Kobo (Indigo Books' ebook format)
Smashwords (various formats)

It's also listed on Maniac Readers and finally Goodreads, which I thought was really, really cool!

Don't forget it's still available as a print on demand paperback from Amazon.com!

Thank you so much to all who have purchased a copy so far!

Here's the updated banner for my Facebook author page...


I also made this poster just for something to do.


I'm getting more and more proficient with GIMP each time I use it.

Lastly... We finally have *news* from Whom Gods Destroy about their upcoming (and highly anticipated) new album, FAR REACHES... It IS coming out sometime soon, they are finally finished the producing, etc, and have sent it off to be printed. I will alert everyone when I get word it's available, and I will tell everyone where to get it.

The guys also released their third official video today, for "SHE MAY BE EVIL". I watched it and it's pretty cool. Lots of fire. It suits the song.

Have a great week everyone. I leave you with the official video of SHE MAY BE EVIL by Whom Gods Destroy, from their upcoming album, FAR REACHES...

Enjoy!


Saturday, April 15, 2017

The Promise of Spring

Another week has passed... And it was a pretty good one.

I reread the "updated" version of the parts where I removed the flotsam and it looks great for a rough draft. So much better with things cleaned up and back to focusing on the mains instead of that bloody tangent.

I've more than made up for that 6K of flotsam that was removed from it too... This week saw me hitting 3700 words, and that was in less than four hours of writing on one day. 

I'm now back in the middle of chapter eight, and we're seeing another huge turning point for the mains. Several have happened in the last half chapter or so... More than I anticipated. That's what happens when I write by the seat of my jeans instead of plan... 

But that's when some of the best scenes come out too. Stricken has one particular character that was written in on a whim, and they turned out to be a huge catalyst for the mains in that story... I'm not saying who it is publicly. Anyone who wants to know will just have to purchase a copy of Stricken to find out... And then guess which supporting character I'm talking about. 

I know, I'm evil. 

I've given up on setting word count goals for now... If I get any writing done in a week, I'm happy. My best friend thinks I'm pushing myself again, which is making me sick and she's worried I'll burn out if I keep pushing myself to get this manuscript's first draft done by the end of June. 

So even though I do not like it, I'm not setting a deadline to have it finished. That way I don't panic and stress myself out if I don't have it done by the time school gets out for the summer. It'll be done when it gets done. I'd prefer to have it finished so I can set it aside all summer and not worry about it while I look over "Fugitive Dreams", and see if that one is okay as is with a ton of edits, or I need to do a full rewrite on it. (I hate rewrites for the record!)

It's either do that or get hit with a virtual frying pan. I'd rather not be knocked silly, thanks... 

I hope everyone has a wonderful long weekend... Don't overdose on chocolate!

I leave you with "She May Be Evil" by Whom Gods Destroy, which is going to be on their upcoming album, "FAR REACHES", due out later this year. 


Saturday, April 8, 2017

Well, That Was Different!

It's been another wild week at the Allison residence...

We had another snowstorm Tuesday night into Wednesday, and although schools were open in my county, I decided to keep our son home to be safe. I had been getting reports from local pals on Facebook about how slippery things were even close to town, and that was the final straw.

Son didn't mind. The laptop is set up in the living room and he has his gaming console as well as portable gaming systems, plus tons of books. He was happy he didn't have to go out in the cold.

This past week saw a major change in things regarding the current manuscript in progress. I was going to try writing on Monday but was stalled in a spot, and couldn't figure out why.

I took a long look at it, and realized I was adding too much flotsam, and was going in a zillion tangents. I talked it over with my best friend and a couple of others, and decided to remove all of the passive areas, or spots where I wasn't focusing on the two mains and their journey.

Close to 6K was removed, over a full chapter. Instead of showing certain things, I only mentioned them briefly, and decided to go with a single two page, 1100 word scene, as well as a quick, three or four paragraph update later on for that particular "line". 

It looks and reads so much better! Yeah, I went from being in the middle of chapter 8 to in Chapter 6, but it's worth losing that much junk to get things right. It's better that I caught it now instead of having a beta reader catch it, right? 

I made up for it... Yesterday was a 3100 word day. I wrote up the "certain things" part, which was a catalyst for a *huge* breakthrough for the mains. The breakthrough scene went a lot easier than the catalyst one - I have my reasons for that, but I'd rather wait to say anything publicly. My beta readers and a few select others know, and they're sworn to secrecy. 

I know exactly how the "aftermath" scene is going to play out, from the POV to everything else. I just have to find the time to write it...

WHOM GODS DESTROY has revealed the cover art for their upcoming album, "FAR REACHES". It is gorgeous! They have also produced a few posters for promotional purposes, and you can enter a draw to win a signed one... Go to the link to their Facebook fan page (listed in my links area to the left of the blog body) and comment on the photo of the poster. Your name is entered. 

Here's what the posters look like. Eli and Tim did an amazing job designing them. 


I love it. 

Another thing that happened was a gorgeous rainbow last night... 


It was fading by the time I snapped this photo but I thought it was a cool shot due to the moon being in it as well. It was a really strong and pretty one, the perfect end to a great day.

Lastly, something arrived in the mail yesterday...


Yes, that is a PAPERBACK copy of STRICKEN! It's available as a print on demand option on the American Amazon, as well as the UK one. 

It is SO PRETTY! I can't stop looking at it! 

Even though I have it in paperback as well as the versions for e-books my publisher puts out, it still hasn't sunk in that I am finally published. It feels like a dream, one that I'm going to wake up from at any time. 

If it is a dream, I hope I never wake up. This one is way too good to lose.

Where you can purchase STRICKEN:

Extasy Books (my amazing publisher!) - ebook formats only.
Amazon.com - Kindle/e-book format, will direct you to your nation's site, and print on demand paperback.

Don't forget, there is an excerpt on my website, www.vjallison.com!

Have an amazing weekend everyone. I leave you with "THE HAUNTED" by WHOM GODS DESTROY. Enjoy!


Sunday, April 2, 2017

Promoting, Ice Storms and More...

It's been a wild week. We had not one but *two* ice storms this week - everything was covered in ice for a couple of days, photos to follow - three days worth of power outages, schools canceled for two days in a row, and so many other wacky things happening... I honestly thought I wouldn't get much work done on anything writing or promotional wise this week.

I'm now into the third week of being published, and word has gotten around a little. So far, a few friends of mine have read Stricken, and they loved it. I haven't had any public reviews yet but I'm hoping that will change now that it's out on Amazon.

I'm still going crazy promoting it. In fact, I decided to make some banners for Stricken - something I should have done a month ago. Better late than never I suppose, lesson learned! I've also run a few Facebook ads, and they have really gotten the word out. One ad got over 1500 views, which isn't bad!

Even with everything going crazy, I managed to squeeze in a full day of writing on Friday, and I more than made up for missing work earlier that week. I finished Chapter Seven of the MS in progress, and started Chapter Eight... I'm in the buildup to a *huge* key scene - not a sex scene, but a mammoth breakthrough for the main characters.

I hope to get more written this week. I have maybe six or seven days left before the end of the school year, and I want it done ASAP so I don't have to worry about it over the summer.

I'm happy this one is almost writing itself, when my brain is working.

Here's two of the promotional banners I've created for Stricken. One is a quote from the book.

Banner with quote from Stricken.

Banner for Facebook author page.

Here's a couple of shots from the ice storm. Note how heavy the trees were with it....






I leave y'all with a photo of Amber. She was showing me what she thought of a scene that wasn't exactly well written...


Cats do have a wacky way of showing their humans when they're disgusted, I swear.

Have a great week everyone!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

STRICKEN - Get it on Amazon!

Mark this on your calendars everyone:

STRICKEN will be released on Amazons around the world on SUNDAY MARCH 26, 2017! It is now up for preorder on their sites. 

This is it on the CANADIAN Amazon.

The AMERICAN Amazon.

I know it's available in the United Kingdom and Australia as well, but I haven't checked more than those four. If it's not available on your nation's Amazon, it IS up for free international delivery on the Canadian site. The price listed is in our dollar, of course. 

If you preorder now, it will show up in your Kindle, Kindle app, or Kindle compatible app tomorrow morning. Or you can order it whenever you like. 

Thank you eXtasy Books, and everyone I've met there, for giving me this chance. 

Excerpt available on www.vjallison.com!





Ewan Campbell once thought he had it all – he was a rising star in the real estate field, popular with his peers, and engaged to his employer’s cousin, the shy and quiet little Marti Marlowe.

A heartbeat later, he was alone – shattered, confused and suicidal. Why had Marti walked away from him?

Years later, in another place, and a new chapter of Ewan’s life, fate brings them face to face again. 

They start building a friendship, but Ewan wants more. He wants Marti as his wife, and she seems to prefer their current status as friends.


Can he convince her that taking another chance at their failed future will be the start of the best part of their lives?

***********

Quick update:

I'm still writing on the new manuscript in progress. So far, it's coming along nicely. I'm almost finished chapter six, and have surpassed the 20K mark. My only complaint is that I'm not getting as much writing time as I'd like - Husband is only working one day shift a week right now. Hopefully that will change soon, I want this one DONE, ASAP! I won't sleep until it's finished, it won't leave me alone. 

"Fugitive Dreams" is still in stasis... I won't look at that until this current WIP is finished and goes into its first stasis cycle. 

Have a great weekend everyone! Don't forget to get a copy of STRICKEN if you haven't already. Thank you! ♥ ♫ 

Much love. 

Friday, March 17, 2017

STRICKEN is Now LIVE on Extasy Books!

Release day has finally arrived!

I am so excited to see my first book, STRICKEN, finally hit the shelves at my publisher, Extasy Books!

It has been one HECK of a long road to get here... Five years from the time I started the first draft of Incarnation #1 to the publish date. Five years of working my tush off with writing, editing, revisions, a full rewrite, two title changes, tons of compressing, and so much other stuff.

Despite a last minute bout of technical difficulties, STRICKEN went live at 4 a.m. my time, or Midnight Pacific Time. 

A myriad of emotions are rolling through me right now... I'm excited because I'm now published, kind of sad to know that Ewan and Marti's story is finally out there, and most of all, so freaking happy it's out there that I'm in tears!

Thank you to everyone at Extasy Books for giving me this amazing opportunity... Y'all rock! 

COVER PHOTO: Done by Syneca Firestone. She is one amazing artist. PLEASE go check her out at Original Syn... She's also a sweet person, I loved working with her. It was an honor to have someone as talented as her do the cover for my first book.

Namaste, and love to all of you!

STRICKEN...


Ewan Campbell once thought he had it all – he was a rising star in the real estate field, popular with his peers, and engaged to his employer’s cousin, the shy and quiet little Marti Marlowe.

A heartbeat later, he was alone – shattered, confused and suicidal. Why had Marti walked away from him?

Years later, in another place, and a new chapter of Ewan’s life, fate brings them face to face again. 

They start building a friendship, but Ewan wants more. He wants Marti as his wife, and she seems to prefer their current status as friends.

Can he convince her that taking another chance at their failed future will be the start of the best part of their lives?

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Cover Reveal: STRICKEN

Here's the gorgeous cover for Stricken, done by Syneca of ORIGINAL SYN Graphic Art and Design. 

I am completely in love with it... To see Ewan and Marti in "real life" finally made me cry. The cover has them depicted almost identically to how I always saw them in my mind. 

Thank you Syneca, and thank you eXtasy Books for having such an amazing digital artist do my first book cover. 

It's gorgeous!!


Don't forget, Stricken is now on preorder at eXtasy Books, and is being released this FRIDAY, MARCH 17th... There is an excerpt from Stricken on my website, www.vjallison.com! Feel free to check it out if you haven't already. 

So excited! 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Setting the Stage...

Happy Monday everyone!

Husband is on vacation right now, and it's March Break in my son's school district. 

I'm currently in "promotional mode", trying to get the word out about Stricken as much as I can before it's finally released on eXtasy Books' site this coming FRIDAY MARCH 17th

Excerpt on my website: www.vjallison.com

I'll share the blurb again in a bit. 

WRITING UPDATE:

Friday was a really crazy day writing wise. I went offline before 11 my time and jumped into it. 

The next thing I knew, it was after 3 PM, I had gone nuts pounding on the keyboard, and I had just about finished Chapter 3. I had a 4500 word day in those short hours.

My brain wouldn't stop buzzing though.... It's bad when I consider skipping an episode of MacGyver, the only show I'm watching at the moment. (I adore George Eads!)... I went back on the computer after Son went to bed at 10 PM. This story is not letting go of me. 

I feel like I did when I was writing Stricken's current incarnation. Stunned to the max, including the walking into walls business and being so spaced out that I have to remind myself what I'm doing before I hurt myself. 

I stayed up till 3 AM Saturday morning, and added another 2300 words. I'm in the middle of Chapter 4, just after a huge event for the mains. 

With the little bit I added on Monday, it was a 6K week. Not bad. 

This story is progressing nicely. I can only hope it turns out as good as my best friend thinks it's going to. I'm glad I have most of this one mapped out now. When I first came up with the idea last November, I wasn't sure what route to take with it. Maybe waiting a few months helped me a little.

All I can do now is wait and see how things go. If it turns out to be a good one, and I hope it does, my betas will probably see it sometime in the fall. If I have to do a lot of work on it - editing and revisions - so be it. Stricken wasn't written and polished to a nice shine in less than six months after all, it took me years to get that story up to submission standards...

I haven't set any writing goals for the week, because I'm unsure of what I'll have for writing time, and I'm going to be promoting the daylights out of Stricken between now and next weekend.

I'm still stunned the work on that particular manuscript - now book! - is done, and it's finally going to be seen by the world in four short days. 

My dream of having one book published in my lifetime has been achieved.

Have a fantastic week everyone!

I leave you with the blurb for STRICKEN, available now on preorder at eXtasy Books... Release date is MARCH 17 2017


STRICKEN...

Ewan Campbell once thought he had it all – he was a rising star in the real estate field, popular with his peers, and engaged to his employer’s cousin, the shy and quiet little Marti Marlowe.

A heartbeat later, he was alone – shattered, confused and suicidal. Why had Marti walked away from him?

Years later, in another place, and a new chapter of Ewan’s life, fate brings them face to face again. 

They start building a friendship, but Ewan wants more. He wants Marti as his wife, and she seems to prefer their current status as friends.


Can he convince her that taking another chance at their failed future will be the start of the best part of their lives?

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Getting Ready!

Eight days to go until Stricken hits the virtual shelves at my publisher, eXtasy Books, on MARCH 17th!!!

Want to read an excerpt? I have one on my website! www.vjallison.com

I'm also going cuckoo promoting Stricken in Facebook, on Twitter and even around my writing forums. The cover has gotten a lot of good reviews, people seem to love it a lot. I've been told that although some of my pals don't read erotic romance as a rule, they're going to read Stricken, because it's my work.

That is a huge compliment in my opinion... I just hope everyone who reads it likes it.... 

WRITING UPDATE: 

Between promoting Stricken, and going nuts in real life with prepping for March Break next week, doctor's appointments, and other health related things for me, I am still writing.

Yes, I have another story on the go. It was started less than a week after Fugitive Dreams (working title) had its first draft finished. This story seemed to grab me by the throat even before I was typed "THE END" in FG.

It was either write it or lose the mind. Since I lost my mind years ago... I'm writing it. lol 

It's going pretty well at the moment. I'm into Chapter 2 already and I'm hoping to get that done before the end of the month. I've been squeezing in as much writing time on it as I can, between Husband's shifts and everything else. I have tomorrow left before March Break starts but Husband said that he and Son will be disappearing at least one day next week so I can work. 

That is the greatest gift they can give me when they know I'm deep into a story. I love it when Husband does that. Ever since I finished the original incarnation of this story a couple of years ago, he's clued in that I *am* serious about writing and being published, and has been my rock through all of the upsets from rejections, to the last while when I was going crazy with talking to the gang at eXtasy Books trying to get Stricken up to their high standards for published works.

I would love to have this one's first draft finished by the time school gets out in June, that way I'm not hanging over the summer again. That way it can "perk" all summer long, while I talk to the Betas about Fugitive Dreams, and see if it's up to eXtasy's standards. If not, it'll be classed as a "practice" story, to get my feet wet again after a long break, and set aside. I won't delete it, that's not my way. I keep everything I write, even the horrid stuff. Call me a "story hoarder" if you want. lol 

As for other projects, I have plenty of ideas. I just have to see which one grabs me first after this WIP is finished. 

Other than that, not much happening in my end of the world. Still no word from WHOM GODS DESTROY on when "Far Reaches" is going to be released, nor is there word on when their first gig of 2017 is happening. I'll keep y'all posted. 

I leave you with a photo of some potted tulips one of my longtime pals, Anna H., gave me as a congratulatory gift for getting published. They're not quite open yet, and are supposed to be a really, really dark purple when they fully bloom... I'm fanatical about purple, it's my favorite color next to black, and I wear both together a lot. 

They are so pretty!

Have a lovely weekend everyone! 


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

My First Book, Stricken, Is Now Available for Preorder!

It is with great honor and pleasure that I announce that my first book, Stricken, is now available for pre-order!

My publisher, eXtasy Books out of British Columbia, is an e-book publisher, and their books are available on a variety of platforms. So if you don’t have an e-book reader, or an e-book app for your phone or tablet, I suggest you get one if you want to read it.

Stricken hits the virtual shelves on MARCH 17, 2017 on eXtasy's site, and other sites in subsequent weeks. 


I am shocked, but happy, and so excited to be with this amazing publisher. Everyone there is so nice… From the Acquisitions Editor to their Editor in Charge, the CFO, my assigned editor for Stricken, and I even met the owner herself. I am so lucky to be published by such a friendly, wonderful, and professional team.

Cover art for Stricken is by Syneca at Original Syn, a digital artist studio that does a lot of book covers, as well as other digital art. They are amazing! When I first got the cover proof, I cried. Syneca, the artist, pretty much hit how I pictured the leading couple. The scene is perfect too. It’s so pretty! I still can’t stop staring at it. I love it. She is one heck of a fantastic artist. Go check her out!

I wish I could thank everyone by name… But my list is so long. So I don’t forget anyone, I’ll just say a general THANK YOU to those who were behind me 1000% during the amazing but sometimes frustrating journey write this story and get it published. Love y’all.

You can preorder Stricken HERE.

Stats:

Pages: 207
Word count: 58,967
Heat level: 3 flames

STRICKEN...

Ewan Campbell once thought he had it all – he was a rising star in the real estate field, popular with his peers, and engaged to his employer’s cousin, the shy and quiet little Marti Marlowe.

A heartbeat later, he was alone – shattered, confused and suicidal. Why had Marti walked away from him?

Years later, in another place, and a new chapter of Ewan’s life, fate brings them face to face again. 

They start building a friendship, but Ewan wants more. He wants Marti as his wife, and she seems to prefer their current status as friends.

Can he convince her that taking another chance at their failed future will be the start of the best part of their lives?
Don't forget to check out the other amazing authors at Extasy Books.  

Thank you for all of your support everyone. NAMASTE!