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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

The Rose by PD Alleva - Book Tour - Guest Post - Bonus Excerpt - Book Review - Giveaway - Enter Daily!


Hey, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host PD Alleva and his new book, “The Rose”!  For other stops on his Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!!  Also, come back daily to interact with PD and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


The Rose
by PD Alleva

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GENRE: Dystopian Science Fiction Thriller

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BLURB:

A masterful, dystopian science fiction thriller of underground genetic experiments, telepathic evil greys, mysterious rebellion, conspiracy, martial arts, and Alien Vampires.

Sandy Cox believed WW3 was over. But for those Alien Vampires, War Has Just Begun.

Forty-eight hours after a World War III treaty is signed Sandy Cox awakens in an underground compound unable to move. Tied to machines she screams for help but no one answers. At least NO ONE HUMAN.

And they’ve taken her unborn child.

Enter Phil, a rebel freedom fighter who has had more than his share of Alien Vampires. Armed with THE BLADES, a sacred alien martial art, he enters the compound on a mission to find Sandy. But as he battles his way through the compound, Phil discovers Sandy has her own agenda. Finding her stolen child is all that matters.

But the vampires have their own plan and Sandy’s baby is at the heart of their diabolical plot. Joined by a crew of rogue soldiers, they must navigate the underground compound, battling genetically mutated humans, aliens and monsters.

When battling Alien Vampires, one thing is certain…Get Ready To Bleed!

Fans of The Hunger Games, George RR Martin, VE Schwab, Star Wars and Ancient Aliens will be fascinated by this high-powered, intelligent, edge of your seat dystopian sci-fi action thriller.

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EXCERPT ONE:

“It’s in the blood, dear,” said Ellen, one of the women Sandy shared time and space with, her skin worn by age, hard labor, and days spent under the sun. Blotches, liver spots and creases led the observer to the eyes. One dark, the other a cataract milky white and she always wore a dark shawl draped over the head and shoulders. Sandy was afraid of Ellen, she reminded Sandy of a gypsy or witch from a fairy-tale.

“Come again?” said Sandy, her eyes shifting from soldier to Ellen to soldier then back to Ellen.

Ellen had cut herself transferring a wood bucket filled with rice to add to an already large trough of buckets. A thick wood splinter pinned in the bottom of her palm dripping with a thick stream of blood. She turned to Sandy raising the bloodied palm and caught a drop of blood in her unwounded hand.

“The blood dear,” said Ellen. “All magic comes from the blood.”

Sandy cringed at the sight; she’d always been squeamish. Her stomach bumped, blood curled. Magic, Sandy thought. If only magic was real. How wonderful would that be? Sandy understood she was na├»ve, the result of an isolated childhood and her parents’ death when she was ten years old. Not that they had taught the young Sandy about the world she lived in either. They’d kept her under lock and key, never so much as offering a glimpse or advice on the outside world. They were always so cryptic with their explanations, living in an abundant and overgrown mansion as if luxury were a childhood friend. Sure there were plenty of rooms for a child to explore but as time went by those rooms seemed more like a prison than a home.

Years of neglect, isolation and secrets were as torturous as physical suffering. And she was tired of secrets. She wanted to know truth. Truth was like a blanket that keeps you warm in the coldest winter.

“The blood, Sandy,” said Ellen who clenched her fist around those crimson droplets, shaking her hand in front of her face. “All is in the blood.”

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GUEST POST:

Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd Inspired Action Scenes:

I’ve been told I write great action sequences. More than a few reviewers have reported they could see the scene as if they were watching a movie in their head. Not bad at all, I’ll definitely take that compliment. So, a few reviewers presented the question: “How do you do it?” Well, there’s a formula to it for sure, however, for the most part, and for me at least, I gather inspiration through music.

The Rose Vol. 1 was written to be an action packed, edge of your seat, thriller that I refused to allow to let up. The story had to keep pumping, raising the stakes with twists and turns, and epic battle after epic battle. My goal was for the reader to anticipate upcoming fight scenes, wanting to read (and see) certain battles between specific characters.

I’ve always been a fan of epic battle scenes, The Matrix, Star Wars, and Mad Max Fury Road to name a few, always anticipating with bated breath the great upcoming battle between protagonist and antagonist. I can still remember my blood pumping when Luke Skywalker meets Darth Vader for the first time in Empire Strikes Back, that epic scene still gets me even today. So, I set out to create scenes and battles that carried a similar anticipation, knowing the battle had to become epic in the mind of the reader. It also helps if you add in a focus point, said focus being a weapon shared by both hero and villain.

The Blades, as they are referred to in The Rose, are a sacred alien martial arts weapon. (See below for a bonus excerpt and a caricature of The Rose’s hero, Phil). I came up with the idea of The Blades about ten years ago when the thought of writing an epic sci-fi series first dropped into my mind. Fast forward ten years when I’m a spectator at my twin’s Karate dojo and I notice a weapons class going on and the students are using what looks like police batons or nightsticks. Come to find out the weapons they are using are called tonfas, wooden sticks with handles that fit in the palms and run down the forearms. And I said to myself, “Self, that would be a really cool weapon to use in a martial arts scene,” although I needed to raise the stakes, so instead of wood The Blades are made of alien steel. It’s like having a sword attached to your forearms during hand-to-hand combat.

Now on to write the scene. When I picture the battle in my head it’s always like watching a trailer. Short, fast movements with a less is more philosophy. Allow the reader to fill in the gaps in their own mind. Allow the anticipation to build with an almost fatal blow that rocks and reels the reader to want more. Add in more than a few wild martial arts moves and then hit pause (briefly of course) with some poignant dialogue and epic one liners followed with raising the stakes on the scene with a distraction towards a pivotal part of the plot related to the action sequence, boomeranging back to the action scene with a satisfying WOW factor.

In order to accomplish this WOW factor I need inspiration. I find it necessary as a writer to feel like I’m smack dab in the middle of the action sequence, sometimes the passive phantom observer, and other times I need to become the character. I want to hear the growls, howls, moans and groans. Smell the blood and sweat. Feel the anger, the heart pounding, the pain, fear, and the blood boiling. Snarl and grind those teeth or fangs. The best way I can do this is through music. Two songs in particular helped me to achieve this goal: Pink Floyd’s Shine On You Crazy Diamond, and Led Zeppelin’s Kashmir.

It’s the guitar in both songs that get my blood pumping, building anticipation with David Gilmore’s classic four notes from Shine On You Crazy Diamond. I use this song to picture the beginning of each battle, the anticipation that something great and extraordinary is going to happen, watching and listening, allowing the mind, heart and blood to gear up and strap in for a wild ride. Like the beginning of a move trailer (one of those good ones) that captures the eye and brings on the thought, where is this going?

Interject with a classic one liner then bam, allow the action to unfold, sparks to fly, and blood to spill while rocking along to Led Zeppelin’s base pounding, drum ripping, hard hitting guitar genius, Kashmir. Oh yeah, the lyrics are pretty good too. Probably why a few beginning lines of Kashmir are quoted to begin the novel.

If you’re into hard hitting, blood pumping, extraordinary battle scenes pick up a copy of The Rose Vol. 1. Don’t be fooled by the title (you’ll understand the meaning quickly in the book), this isn’t a romantic vampire book, just an epic, pulse pounding, blood soaked thriller. One can’t write a book about alien vampires and not have the story reflect the ferocity and blood thirst that vampires require.


PreOrder Now Available on Amazon:

Enjoy,

PD Alleva

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SPECIAL BONUS BLADES EXCERPT:

The blades were unharmed. The blades are a unique contraption with thin handles held in the palms, clamps that wrapped around the wrist and just above the elbow, connected by a thin, almost string like plastic. The metal blade descended from the handles down across the arm bone to the elbow clamp and locked into place. The metal they were made from was not of this earth and was able to collapse inside the handles and wrist clamp like tin foil crumples inside a fist. But this metal was strong and solid and unmatched to any substance on earth. The handles when pressed by the index finger would ignite the blades down the arm, locking in place. Another unique feature were the handles, fitted comfortably in the palm, when pressed with the thumbs would ignite claws of steel. A useful tool when needing to climb walls. Robyn had spent years teaching Phil the art of Kobudo Tonfa. An art he’d become supremely confident with.

Phil’s stare drifted to the full blood moon rising over the compound. Eyes wide, thinking: You know what that means. There’s more under the moon tonight than just alien vampires. And they come with teeth. The moon’s red glow crept across the landscape as Phil dipped his chin to his chest, grinding his teeth. Four simple words on the tip of his tongue…

“Get ready to bleed.”

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MY BOOK REVIEW:


I have worked with PD Alleva and featured him on my blog a few times.  However, for some reason I have never read or reviewed any of his books, so when the opportunity presented itself, I absolutely accepted the request!!

I honestly wasn’t quite sure what to expect with this book, but I was pleasantly surprised and continuously entertained!!

This book is a scary, dark, new age, suspenseful, mysterious, thrilling, intriguing, captivating, compelling, intriguing, original, and thought-provoking!!

Let the alien fans and the vampire fans unite!!  You both are in for a treat with Alleva’s super creative merged creatures that comes in a multitude of species and unique characteristics!!

In a very scary, dark, dangerous post WW3 realm that is anything but safe, happy, or peaceful; Sandy and her unborn baby are in for a fight for their lives.  Only 48 hours after signing a treaty that now seems like a ploy to let down our guard the country as we knew it is no longer the same.  Creatures we never knew existed are not only real – they are on the hunt and we are on the menu.  Creepy, horrifying, spine-chilling, blood sucking creatures of all kinds are taking over!!  Get ready for some ghoulish nightmares!!

I enjoyed all the main and supporting characters – Sandy, Ben, Phil, Robyn, Cam, Mono, Telas, Sanos, Saiph, Dr. Blum, Titus, and the three witches also known as: Mintaka, Ainitak, and Alnilam.  Every character felt important and brought something special to the story.  At times, I even found myself completely wrapped up with the characters and immersed in their storylines!  However, I must admit, this book is a bit top heavy with characters.  I would have loved a quick reference guide at the back or front of the book with a short summary about who they are, what type of creature, etc.  It would definitely help the reader keep the story and characters straight.

I also enjoyed the intriguing and fascinating storyline that was filled with stimulating action, engaging scenes, innovative worldbuilding, and perplexing concepts.

This book has highly creative plot points that were well structured and defined.

I love the in-depth amount of research the author did while constructing this book that is clearly evident and shown throughout the story.

The author has a unique ability to blend multiple genres and create a story that appeals to a copious amount of readers.

This book is definitely on the longer side at 507 eBook pages!!!  There certainly is a lot going on in this book, and I’m not sure where I’d make cuts, if any, as so many scenes were not only important but were well written and equally engaging.  However, it did take me several days to finally reach the end – not by loss of interest, just by amount of time available to read and amount of time needed to reach the end of the book.

I liked that this book was divided up into three parts.  The first part, titled, “Your Death Will Not Be in Vain!” includes the first eleven chapters.  The second part, titled, “First Things First, We’re Going to Need More Guns!” which includes Chapters 12-35.  The third part, titled, “And-Here-We-Go!” which includes Chapters 36-54.  However, while reading the book there is no indication that a new part has started or that one has ended.  I only knew about the three parts because I read the table of contents.  I found that a bit confusing that it was even mentioned if it wasn’t going to be included in the book contents.  Even the story didn’t entirely feel shifted or separated out at that point.  Usually I enjoy books that are split up as it gives me a good stopping place to aim for.

I really enjoyed the Author’s Note at the end of the book.  I love with authors include something extra, something personal, or something about how this whole book came together and Alleva did just that.  Alleva explained the creation and process of the development of The Rose.  Which surprisingly actually started out as a short story lol!!  Yea, like 500 pages ago lol!!

This book does end with some unresolved situations and leaves you with more questions than answers.  However, there seems to be intention for a book two which most likely will address those points.

There are some predictable scenes.  However, there are quite a few unexpected twists and turns that you won’t see coming!

This book is listed as Volume One.  This book can absolutely be read as a standalone.  There are significant implications that there will be a second book, Volume Two, being released in the near future.

All in all, I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it!  I think all science fiction readers will like this book too!  So, add it to your TBR List and get to reading - you won't be disappointed!

**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book and have voluntarily provided an honest, and unbiased review in accordance with FTC regulations.**

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AUTHOR BIO:


PD Alleva is an alternative fiction author. His novels cross genres, blending mystery, conspiracy, psychology, and action with horror and dystopian science fiction. Alternative fiction is PD's attempt at describing what readers uncover in any one of his books, a new discovery towards mainstream storytelling. He's been writing since childhood, creating and developing stories with brash and impactful concepts that he would describe are metaphors for the shifting energies that exist in the universe. PD exists inside of his own universe, working diligently on The Rose Vol. II and exceptional horror novels. Be prepared for Golem, PD’s upcoming horror thriller.

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CONNECT WITH PD:

Website:

Blog:

Email:
pdallevaauthor@gmail.com

Facebook:

Twitter:

Instagram:

LinkedIn:

BookBub Author Page:

BookBub Author Page:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

Amazon Author Page:

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BOOK BUY LINKS:


Amazon Kindle:

Amazon Hardcover:

Barnes and Noble NOOK eBook:

Barnes and Noble Hardcover:

The Book Depository Hardcover:

BAM! Books-A-Million Hardcover:

Kobo eBook:

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GIVEAWAY INFO:

PD will be awarding a $50 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

The Light Catcher Murders by Jo Cassie McRae - Blurb Blitz - Giveaway - Enter Daily!


Hi, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Jo Cassie McRae and her new book, “The Light Catcher Murders”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Jo Cassie and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


The Light Catcher Murders
by Jo Cassie McRae

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GENRE: Cozy Mystery

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BLURB:

Nestled in the scenic Texas Hill Country, the cozy town of Wheaton Creek seemed an idyllic place to escape the world’s increasingly harsh realities.  At least, that’s what Kate Atherton thought.

Kate once enjoyed a long, successful career with a specialized, highly secret federal intelligence agency.  Crises in both her personal and professional life drove her to early retirement and, ultimately, to Wheaton Creek, the perfect place for her and her former-military husband to escape what had come to feel like a world made up of wars, hatred, fear, and untimely death.  And, at first, the escape was all Kate had hoped for.  Then murder came to Wheaton Creek—a crime that a corrupt county sheriff seems determined to pin on Kate’s photographer friend, Lucy Celek.

Lucy’s work has been chosen to appear at a prestigious photography festival, a festival that could take her from amateur to professional standing.  All goes well until the gallery displaying her work is broken into, and one of Lucy’s photographs is vandalized.  A week later, the man Lucy suspected of destroying her photograph—a fellow photographer who was angry that his own work was not chosen by the festival committee—is murdered.  Faced with a sheriff who shows little interest in expanding his list of suspects beyond Lucy, Kate feels she must dust off her puzzle-solving skills to find the real killer.  Murder is just the beginning, though, as Kate’s amateur sleuthing begins to reveal a tangled web of crimes that go beyond anything she could have imagined.

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EXCERPT TWO:

Picking her way through the broken glass again, Kate slipped up behind Lucy.  She gave the beleaguered deputy a sympathetic smile and gently took hold of Lucy’s elbow.  “Lucy, dear.  Do you think you might want to calm down?  This officer is going to do his best to find out who did this and why.  He isn’t the bad guy here.”

Lucy wheeled on her.  “He doesn’t have to look far to find out who did this.  If he’d just listen to me and quit asking irrelevant questions!  I’ve been telling him that it has to be Stewart Wilson.  You saw how Stewart behaved after the festival.  He’s a horrible, angry, vindictive man!  Did you see how he ripped into my mural?  The bastard!  If I could get my hands on him, I swear I’d rip into him the same way!”

The deputy’s eyebrows shot up, and he shifted uneasily, his pen hovering over his notepad.  Kate’s grip on Lucy’s elbow tightened, as did the smile she showed the deputy.  “I’m sure Ms. Celek didn’t mean that, Deputy Green,” she said.  When Lucy started to disagree, Kate squeezed her arm so tightly that Lucy let out a little yelp of pain.  “She’s understandably distraught.  If you have more questions for her, might I suggest that you give her some time to collect herself?  I’m sure she’ll be more helpful when she’s feeling a bit more rational.”

“Rational?”  Lucy flinched again under the renewed fierceness of Kate’s grip and did not finish what she had been about to say.

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AUTHOR BIO:


Jo Cassie McRae is a native Texan who has lived near Austin on the edge of the Texas Hill country for over 30 years.  In addition to writing, McRae loves to read, garden, and cook.  Like Kate Atherton (The Light Catcher Murders), McRae’s bookshelves overflow with history books, biographies, historical fiction, and mystery novels.  Unlike Kate, McRae does not have a mysterious, secret former career, having worked instead as a rather ordinary legal assistant at an Austin law firm.

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CONNECT WITH JO CASSIE:

Website:

Email:
authorjcmcrae@icloud.com

Facebook:

BookBub Author Page:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

Amazon Author Page:

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AMAZON BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

Amazon Paperback:

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GIVEAWAY INFO:

Jo Cassie will be awarding a $50 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

Monday, September 28, 2020

Neurogarden by Bryon Vaughn - Book Tour - Guest Post - Giveaway - Enter Daily!


Hi, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Bryon Vaughn and his new book, “Neurogarden”!  For other stops on his Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $50 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Bryon and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


Neurogarden
by Bryon Vaughn

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GENRE: Science Fiction, Techno-Thriller

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BLURB:

Where can you run when there is no place to hide?

Brenna Patrick is a brilliant technologist specializing in neural-cognitive functions and AI. She has cracked the code to solve one of the most troublesome problems in the field, and turned that into the multi-billion dollar NeuralTech Corporation.

Working quietly with the U.S. Department of Defense, NeuralTech is poised to leapfrog the competition with a revolutionary system for tracking people, starting with the world’s most wanted terrorists. But there are only so many terrorists in the world, so who’s next?

When a pair of Columbia graduate students, Jenny and Leo, stumble on the dark secret of NeuralTech’s success, it kicks off a tense game of cat and mouse. As they fight to defeat the powerful forces arrayed against them, nothing less than the fate of humanity hangs in the balance…

NEUROGARDEN is a roller-coaster ride of a thriller, one that will have readers pondering the nature of memory, and of reality, long after they've read the last page.

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EXCERPT ONE:

Every morning for Brenna Patrick began with a hot shower and a hotter cup of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee in the same oversized mug she had stolen from a cabinet while studying at Oxford. Some poor British sod probably spent days looking for his ever so clever black-and-white yin and yang mug, and now, here, it played a part in the daily rituals of the world's most renowned expert on artificial intelligence.

Halfway through her coffee, Brenna's usual routine of morning news about the weather or the latest political storm was interrupted by a story on the previous day's event at NeuralTech.

"According to sources, yesterday, in an impressive display of technical wizardry, the notorious Ethiopian strongman, Azim Dibaba, was eliminated by the U.S. military in partnership with NeuralTech. Stay tuned for exclusive video footage from the NeuralTech facility coming up after the break."

With a dismissive wave of her hand, the television powered off, and she downed the last of her coffee. Explicit rules about keeping cameras from the Observation Deck were put in place to stop this kind of leaked footage, not so much to keep it a secret, but to control how the message was released. There was no way NeuralTech would have built such an elaborate display of lights and gadgetry if the world was never going to see what they were doing. The fanfare was all a show, a carnival for the masses to distract from the visceral heart of what they were witnessing. Hell, they used to run the ops from a small conference room in the basement of NeuralTech HQ with two laptops and an iPad. The spectacle was created for virality, but she wanted the first glimpses to be better than some shaky cell phone video from a reporter behind glass.

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GUEST POST:

Finding the Right Balance:

Most of the authors that I know do not make their living through their words, myself included. Many of us have jobs that pay the bills, and writing is our escape. No matter what you do in your non-writing work, it is all too common for work to take over and push everything else to the edges.

It is easy to tell you that you need to make time for your writing. Everybody says that, but as advice goes, that is pretty weak sauce. I’m not sure that I can offer anything much strong, because there is a ton of truth in that statement, but I will outline some of the strategies that have worked for me in the production of my first novel, Neurogarden.

1.)  Write every day. Only have five spare minutes? Write something. Not at a computer? Tap something out on your phone. (You all know your phone is ALWAYS in arm’s reach.) Don’t think it is worth it? Just do it and see. Some of my best ideas came from a paragraph I wrote on my phone.

2.)  If you are working on a novel, though it could apply for other types of work, keep a running list of scene ideas that you can come to whenever you get stuck. This will help you to avoid wasting your precious time staring at a screen. Stuck on that scene that you just don’t know how to resolve? Start another. I have found writing about some other aspect of the bigger story works wonders for unsticking me.

3.)  Treat your writing like a job, because even if you aren’t making much money yet, that is exactly what it is. Schedule your writing sessions and stick to it. If you have to reschedule make sure you do, don’t just say “I’ll skip it today.” Writing is not like leg day at the gym.

Hopefully, these three tips can help others trying to make a go of their dreams of being the next great author. They helped me to get Neurogarden finished, and have me well on the way to finishing the second book in the series.

Good luck, and please share links to your work when you get to the other side!

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AUTHOR BIO:


Ever since reading Douglas Adams back in my formative years, I have had an interesting relationship with humor, science fiction, and technology. My first computer was a TI-99/4A, so yeah, I’m old, but only until scientists have cracked the code on transplanting our brains into shiny new vessels.

My body may be showing signs of wear, but I’m keeping my brain tight.

When I am not dreaming of far off worlds and writing, I am living a semi-normal life working in New York City, and watching movies with my wife and her spastic cat, Moss.

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CONNECT WITH BRYON:

Website:

Email:
bryon.vaughn@mac.com

Facebook:

Twitter:

Instagram:

LinkedIn:

BookBub Author Page:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

Amazon Author Page:

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BOOK BUY LINKS:


Amazon Kindle eBook:

Amazon Paperback:

The Book Depository Paperback:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY INFO:

Bryon will be awarding a $50 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.