A glimspse into my musings ... as rambling, twisted & demented as they may be
~ A glimspse into to the musings of my mind ... as rambling, twisted & demented as they may be at times. ~
~"Your acting, or your writing, is not yours to judge. So saying "I'm not very good at this" is some sort of protective mechanism, and it will keep you from sharing it with people. You have to be willing to fearlessly expose yourself."
-- Lee Tergesen ~
| I can't believe how long it has been since I've blogged! Wow! Time flies is an understatement. I honestly can’t believe it has been more than 2 1/2 years. *shame faced* I have no excuse, but do owe you at least the story. So, grab your coffee or wine …
The end of 2014 and all of 2015 was a nightmare. I was in a dark place mentally, emotionally … I didn’t write more than a grocery list for 13 months. A product of the depression or the cause, I don’t know. It sucked. Writing is my passion and my escape as well as my income! (thank GOD for my hard working hubby) I tried everything. I tried continuing The Trinity Falls Series .. I tried returning to the McCade’s farm … I looked for new new inspiration … and couldn’t break through the darkness.
With 2016 fast approaching Fynspookular! suggested I enter the official contest here on WDC. (The poor thing had tried everything else to drag me back to the land of the living) I had a month. I waited until I had 5 days to even have an idea for the picture prompt. The 2000 words that came out of that idea were like nothing I had ever wrote. They were dangerously close to what Adriana Noir and I had always laughingly referred to as “Fluffy Bunny.” It was romance without grit. The heroine was short, hippy, funny and ridiculously real in my head. Her hero was a stocky teddy bear. I fell in love with both.
I won the Short Shots contest and as January started I decided (with my friend’s boot in my butt) to see where these new characters would go. I finished book 1 in June just as my son was headed off to basic training and dove into book 2 in order to survive. (SO proud of him and SO scared all at the same time) The problem was … I had this ridiculous fear/worry that the book wasn’t very Mara … it was too sweet and funny and didn’t have the grit or edge I usually think of, but I LOVED it and the characters. So I quietly published it under the pen name,Anneliese Brand . In March book two joined it. Write Time for Love and Guided Home.
This isn’t a surprise to some of you. I didn’t do a good job of hiding it, but I really should have celebrated it instead. Even the 7 … (Soon to be 8!!) Mara McBain books are different, and appeal to different readers. Maybe some of you like funny romance. I love writing AND reading different genres. Add Fluffy Bunny Romance to the list.
So that’s the story of the last 2 1/2 years plus … darkness … worries … new genre … pen name and all. If you’ve actually read this far you’re f’n amazing and I love you. LOL
Peace & Creativity!
|It's finally here! Check out the newly released, SOUTHERN EDEN!
Tyler O’Grady can’t believe his eyes when the woman steps out of the willows. Her sudden appearance on a private lake and ethereal beauty make him question his belief in mermaids and his sanity. When he greets her on the beach, his vision proves to be real and just as mesmerizing up close. There’s no doubt the package is perfect, but it’s something in her eyes that calls to him. He knows that guys like him don’t get girls like Eden, but Grady’s never been afraid of hard work. Can he convince her to give up the glitz and glamour for country life?
The lake cottage has always been Eden’s secret refuge when fashion and flashbulbs become too much. She is dismayed when she discovers the oft absent owners have sold the private lake just when she needs it most. The new owner is a study in contradictions. The hulking ex-jock that strolls down the beach isn’t the arrogant ladies man she anticipates. Grady’s humor and humility take her off guard and she finds herself intrigued with the gentle giant. When he invites her to stay, curiosity and a desire to hide from the spotlight make her agree, but it isn’t long before it’s the man himself making her dream of never leaving.
|Do you like to support your fellow WDC members in their dreams?? Okay .... how about .... Do you like hot sex and a plot too?? If you answered yes to either or BOTH of those you should check out Adriana Noir 's first book in the new SKALS Series.
What does a girl wear to dinner with a scary Special Forces type with killer eyes and an even deadlier partner?
After a chance encounter in the woods leaves her shaken and reeling, the last thing Taylor McAvay wanted to do was accept an invitation to dinner. Then again, after seeing what Sebastian Baas was capable of, she felt she had little choice. The guy did just save her life, and the feel of his partner’s assault rifle pressed against her cheek still lingered in her mind.
What she discovers surprises her. Beneath the armor and fatigues, is a smart, attentive, and sophisticated man. Unable to resist, Taylor finds herself drawn in by the Special Agent’s charm. Everything about Sebastian, from his imposing presence to his hypnotic eyes, pulls her under his spell. When a drive by shooting leaves her apartment riddled with bullets, she falls under his command as well—not to mention the shadow of a lethal, underground organization known as SKALS.
Her lover has a dark and dangerous side he tries to keep hidden, but when a series of events sends their lives spiraling out of control, she realizes there is much more to him than meets the eye. And when she fails to meet his expectations, the discipline she faces is a startling contrast to the pleasure he gives. Whether she wants to leave or not doesn't matter. Taylor soon learns, when it comes to Sebastian and SKALS, there is no escape.
**DISCLAIMER** This is a dark, erotic thriller with a heavy emphasis on plot. It contains elements of Dominance and discipline with dubious consent, psychological conditioning, and mental manipulation. There’s also gunfire, violence, and things that blow up. If any of this offends you, this is not the book for you.
Sinister Kisses is an appropriate title. Just when you think you can catch your breath from the sizzling sex scenes in this book the chilling main character will rip it away! Special Agent Sebastian Baas is like no character I’ve ever read. His personality and mood swings are dizzying at times. Noir brings to life a man that can tickle a child one moment and carve a man’s face like a jack-o- lantern the next and she does it with skill, slowly showing us the things that have shaped Sebastian into the man he is.
Sebastian and Taylor have a chance run-in while he is on the job and something about the naïve beauty calls to him. I truly believe her future was set even before she accepts his dinner invitation. Sebastian is a man used to getting what he wants. Their courtship is tense and rocky at times, but Tay is drawn to his strength and confidence. She has never had someone want to take care of her and as strong as she’s had to be, there is an appeal to turning the worry over to someone else.
There were times I wanted to scream or smack one or both of them but I fell in love with this couple as I read. The innocence in Taylor is a perfect contrast for Sebastian’s dark intensity. They share a need for love that is consuming and their passion, good and bad, leaps off the page as you read.
I’m excited to announce that after months of blood, sweat, and tears … book two in The Trinity Falls Series, CLUB TIES is now available! If you enjoyed Club Justice this new installment in the series picks up where the first left off and follows Mox as he continues to deal with the fallout of book one’s skeletons and deeds and meets his future. It wouldn’t be Trinity Falls if boy could meet girl and live happily ever after without challenge, but with a lot of heart and help from his extended family Mox takes us on a hell of a ride! I hope you will check out CLUB TIES and let me know what you think!
Love & Creativity!
|I don't have to introduce Adriana Noir to you here on WDC, but I'm excited to let you know that my dear friend and writing partner just released her first novel, REQUIEM: BOOK OF THE FALLEN, and I had the honor of an advance copy. This is no typical story of good and evil. Noir's Angels, divine and fallen, jump off the page with endearing quirks and gut wrenching angst in this apocalyptic tale.
Another great WDC link is that this book is being published through Wynwidyn Press which is owned by our very own Fynspookular! and has several WDC alumni working for her!
You can preorder it now at http://www.adriananoir.com/ or http://www.wynwidynpress.com/! Check it out!
Mankind has failed. After economic ruin drives the world to its knees, darkness and evil reign supreme. From this darkness a group of banished angels, known as the Fallen, rise and roam free--hellbent on destoying humanity once and for all.
Seir, unlike the rest of the Fallen, is uninterested in the human condition. He's always been content to watch the world suffer from afar.
Thousands of years on Earth have left him cynical, jaded, and unsympathetic to the plight of mortals, but when a mysterious woman seeks his help, he's unwittingly thrust into what could spell out the end game between Heaven and Hell. Within Ava lies an important key--one Seir must protect in order to survive. The deeper Seir is drawn into the web of lies and deceit his comrades weave, the more he is forced to confront his own tumultuous past.
The hosts of heaven are starting to descend, and some of them are none too happy with the choices he's made.
As angelic and demonic forces clash, the world's fate hangs precariously in the balance.
The time has come. The battle for our souls has begun.
Despite what you might think from this entries title, I had a wonder time Sunday! I had the honor of being invited to Art in the Park in Pinckney, MI by WDC's very own Fynspookular! ! It was so awesome to meet Fyn face to face for the first time and we had a blast!! For those that don't know, Fyn just realized a life long dream After years of working in the industry, her very own Wynwidyn Press opened their doors recently! In honor of her new business and the release of the first three books in her Alyndoria Series, she had a table set up at Art in the Park signing books and promoting her new venture.
You can check out her website here ... http://www.wynwidynpress.com/ ...
If I would've had half a brain ... I would've taken pictures of her awesome new office. Fynspookular! has to be one of the most creative people I've EVER had the pleasure of meeting. Her office is a place of creativity and dreams. I want to live there. lol Maybe we can convince her to share some pictures. If you are ever in Pinckney, MI I can't encourage you enough to stop by Wynwidyn Press and see the wonder for yourself.
I took along some copies of CLUB JUSTICE with me and sold a few, gave out some bookmarks, and generally did a little marketing, but the best part was meeting Fyn and her wonderful hubby. After we closed up the booth and cleaned up the four of us, my hubby Mike went too ... (he had to come along to make sure the crazy lady I met on WDC wasn't an ax murderer after all ... you know how those authors can be ) .... anywayyy Fyn and her husband took us out to eat at a biker bar in Hell, MI! Talk about an inspirational kick in the butt to get me going on the sequel to CLUB JUSTICE! Bikes, leather, a few horses, and some of the nicest people you will ever meet! Hogs and Horses! How could I go wrong???
It was an all around amazing experience!
|It's a sad day. The world lost the author of one of the all time great children's stories. Maurice Sendak, author of "Where the Wild Things Are" died at 83 from complications with a stroke. My son Max absolutely adored this book. I pray he is in a better place. God bless.
|I woke up this morning with the urge to write. What an amazing feeling. I could've went back to sleep after my son left for school, but the muse whispered in my ear. Maybe this is the end of the slump. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
French vanilla Cappi steaming in my WDC mug and MS Word open .... let the creativity flow.
Love & Creativity!
I love my WDC family! Thank you for all your love and support! Any one that forwards me their receipt showing they ordered "CLUB JUSTICE" in e-book or print format will get a MB from me. If you ordered the print version and are willing to give me a snail mail address I will also mail you out a couple of the promotional bookmarks!!
Love you all!
|My debut novel, CLUB JUSTICE, became available tonight on Amazon in paperback! The e-book version should be live by tomorrow! This has been a huge dream of mine. The butterflies are dueling! LOL This has been a dream of mine for so long. I can't believe it is finally happening. I certainly have to thank WDC for all I've learned here and the amazing support of its members! I hope you will give my baby a shot and let me know what you think!
UPDATE! Now CLUB JUSTICE is available in e-book format on Amazon for only $2.99! Remember if you don't have a Kindle .. which I don't .. you can download the Kindle for PC for free!
|Berenstain Bears co-creator Jan Berenstain died Friday. I remember reading the Berenstain Bears books when I was a child. Books like this helped fuel my love of reading, and I'm sure that of generations of kids. The article I read talking about Jan's death said that more than 260 million copies of the popular books have been published. She will be missed, but her legacy lives on.
|Conflict is paramount in a good story. As much as we love our characters we must put roadblocks in their way, creating hardship and drama, to write a compelling tale. In thinking about the plot for the second book in my Trinity Falls Series this week, I've been pondering crisis and climax, looking for "THE BIG ONE," and then real life reared its head and threatened to bring a friend to her knees. While my heart broke, it reminded me that sometimes it's the little things that pile up and tumble like dominoes.
I'm sure most of you have had those times in your life when you throw up your hands and ask yourself "What else could go wrong?" "Could things get any worse?" I know I always knock on wood after asking that last one. It always seems things can, and do, get worse before better. Your problems don't have to be big things. Maybe alone none of them would even be a blip on the radar, but combined, they bury you. The same is true for your characters. Stop and think about consequences. You make one mistake and everything snowball’s from there.
An everyday example could be making an accounting error in your checkbook. What starts out a simple mathematical error causes a check or more to bounce. Each bounced check results in a thirty to thirty-five dollar overdraft fee. When you're short of funds to begin with, this just adds insult to injury. The fees add up, cutting into the money you have for the next week’s bills and make you short. If this is your story, what happens then? Does your hero/heroine bounce more checks in an effort to catch up, piling on the fees? Maybe there's no money for groceries. Without gas money they can't get to work, which puts them further in the hole. How embarrassing is it when the school starts calling because there are no funds in your child's lunch account? Does your character's electric get turned off? Does the bank threaten to repo their car or foreclose on their house? It is the domino effect.
This is just one example, but I think you see where I’m going. One tiny error and you can lose everything. If you can see the reality, so can your readers. Create conflict that they relate to. Your readers will bond with the characters as they go through trials and tribulations that they themselves have been through or fear. Building this connection will draw your audience in and invoke their heart, and that is what makes for a great story.
Love & Creativity!
|I'm very excited to announce that I launched my new author website today!
As some of you know I have recently finished my first novel, "Club Justice." You can find an excerpt from the book on the new site. I hope you will pop in and let me know what you think. I never could have done it without WDC. I have learned so much from everyone here in five short years and your love and support is unparalleled. You will note a link to WDC right on MaraMcBain.com's home page.
Well .. it is the New Year. No more excuses of holidays to put off editing, promoting, and writing. So ... my first novel is now in the hands of a couple trusted people for a read over. I started a website last night. (It's a WIP and not public yet) And I have dusted off 2009's NaNo novel and started revisions. 2012 is looking good.
|S. L. Britton recently published her ebook, "Blood Feud" on Amazon! It is a vampire/human romance involving a modern day VanHelsing as your heroine. You can check it out at the link below and don't miss the fabulous cover art by our very own kiyasama!
|I've been busy this past week with preparations for both Christmas and Club Justice. My family will all be home this year! My youngest brother is a MP and just returned from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He will be stationed at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri now, but will be bringing his wife and two sons home to Indiana for a visit. The second to the youngest will be coming in from a more tame local of Houston, but we will be happy to see him just the same! LOL The other three of us just stayed right here. *wink*
Between the phone calls, emails, and texts that surround this time of year I have found little time to write. Don't think I have been idle though! I commissioned a book cover made for Club Justice that I can use to publish it in ebook format and in part for print through CreateSpace. So part of those emails flying was looking at mockups, requesting changes, and trying to bring the vision/dream in my head to fruition. I also spent a lot of time looking into CreateSpace. If anyone has any experience with it I would LOVE to hear about it, bad or good.
Other than that ... I've sent the MS to a trusted friend for a read over for story line and have spoke with another who is very good at proofreading for both content and technical aspects. I don't expect anyone to have time until after the first of the year, but it feels good to be shuffling forward in my quest. So that is my update. I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and are gifted with family, love, and creativity.
|Yes I have been writing something, just not BLOG entries! LOL 87,608 words of blood, sweat, and tears! Finishing felt AMAZING! I was on top of the world. I read through it, start to finish tweaking and editing, and loved it! *Thank God I trusted my writing partner in those moments of doubt* Call it vanity, but it is a good feeling to read back over your work and enjoy it.
So, with that finished, I have a couple people that have agreed to read over it and offer their thoughts and expertise. *hugs!* However, what no one warned me of ... now comes the hard part. What do I do with my baby now? Do I go for ease and instant gratification and put it up on Amazon through the KDP program, or do I shop it around to try and find a publisher interested? It doesn't fall easily into a genre category. The tale is of family and love. It involves drama, crime, & passion. Maybe the encompassing mainstream? Ughhh I'm in uncharted waters here people. Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated!
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|I lost my beloved brindle Pitbull/Boxer this morning. I had let him out this morning and the goofy thing bolted into the field. I figured he would go for a run and be back at the door with his tongue hanging out by the time I was ready to take my son to school. He didn't come back. I found him along the road when I went to pull out of the drive. I loved Keller more than any dog I've ever had. I'm heart broken. There will never be another like him. RIP my Keller love.
|I have been working on a Novel on and off for the past three years. More off then on it seems as I realized I had just 15k at the beginning of 2011 and here I am at 81k and nearing the end. LOL The funny thing is that I've known all along that the main male character's name was wrong. I know, right? How can that be? I don't know, but it was. The crazy thing is I have also wrote several short stories, a back and forth with another writer that ended up around 200k, and started two OTHER longer pieces that probably total another 100k ... ALL with these characters.
Over the three years I've considered a lot of names, but never found one that was just right. As I've gotten closer to finishing the novel I've started obsessing over the NAME. I looked at webpages of baby names and made lists and still I couldn't find that name that clicked for me and this character. FINALLY ... I went to bed Tuesday night with a name in mind that I was fairly happy with and plans to make the change on Wednesday, my day off and big writing day. Wouldn't you know it ... I was almost asleep and THE NAME popped into my head!!! *Does the Snoopy dance*
I was so excited that I woke my poor husband up to tell him. As he has to get up at 4:00 am ... his excitement was a bit restrained, but he tried. LOL I tried to lay back down and go to sleep, but that was a no go. Then came ... What if I didn't remember the name in the morning? Surely I would. But what if I didn't. Maybe send myself an email by text message. What if that doesn't go through for some reason? Okay ... maybe I will just get up, go to my desk and write the name on a sticky. Uhhh huhhh
I ended up firing up the lap top and doing a Find and Replace to finally give my main character the name he deserves. For those that know him ... Clay is now Zeke. There you have it. I hope that those of you who have come to love Ginny and her husband will understand and love Zeke as I do.