Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Sizzling PR Tour: Change by Soraya Lane

When her twin sister dies of a mysterious heart condition, Riley King is sent to her grandma’s ranch. But instead of the isolation she’s been aching for, she learns of a family secret that’s been deliberately kept from her, until now.
As if finding out she’s actually a leopard wasn't enough shock for one vacation, Riley meets Hunter Logan … the guy she’s promised to. For life. But Riley has no intention of being told what to do by anyone, certainly not some stubborn, dominant shifter. Even if he can make her purr, her claws are slicing out. Until Riley realizes that not fulfilling her destiny would commit her sister to a life on the other side without her ...   


Hunter inched closer, until he was bent over, a hand resting on either side of her, his face hovering above hers.

 “I want you.”   

Her pulse started its frantic pace. “You do?”

Now it was him laughing at her. “Could I make it any more obvious?”

She looked up hopefully, wishing he’d show her. That he’d do something to make her believe him. That he wasn’t just saying it because he felt he had to. Because they were meant to be together, to like one another.

Hunter’s lips fell to her forehead. She tilted her face up to him, wishing he’d just kiss her properly. She’d dreamt of kissing him again, of his lips on hers, of them pressing against hers over and over again until he couldn’t kiss her anymore.

His hands were still planted on the leather seat on either side of her. She could feel him tense as he moved further forward, thrust his body so it fit snug against hers.

“Riley.” He whispered her name. She watched the shape of each syllable play over his mouth.

His lips came swiftly towards her then, met hers firmly yet softly all at the same time. Riley sighed into his mouth as he kissed her, as his mouth grazed hers.

 “What do we have here?”

Hunter’s lips left hers as quickly as they’d found them. She watched him snap up straight, his stance angry.

There were three guys standing near them, two eyeing his motorcycle, the one who was speaking looking straight at her. They’d both been so distracted they hadn’t noticed them approach.

It didn’t feel good. Fear touched every inched of her skin.    

 “Hunter,” she whispered, loud enough for only him to hear.

He raised his hand in her direction, the smallest of movements. She bit the inside of her mouth so hard she tasted blood.

Hunter’s body was angled toward the men. He looked like he was going to kill them. His back was straight, feet planted evenly apart, eyes flashing with anger, with a wildness that she hadn’t seen before.

Riley almost swallowed her tongue she gulped so hard. He could kill them, all three at once, if he changed. Could wipe the smirks off their faces quicker than they could run. But she didn’t want that.

 “We don’t want any trouble.” Hunter kept his voice even. Steady. Just like his stance.

The guys snickered. “Yeah?” said the one who’d spoken first.

Hunter stood tall, eyes fixed on the guy who appeared to be the leader. “I think it’s time you moved on.”

That only made them come closer.

“Hunter, let’s just go,” she said.

“Listen to the girl,” one of the guy’s taunted.

“No!” The word hissed from her as Hunter launched at them.

She was scared he was going to change, but his control was faultless. He grabbed the first guy in a movement so fast he didn’t even see it coming, then slammed him into the ground. She could see how tight he was holding him, knew he could snap his neck in an instant if wanted to. If he let himself go.

Hunter’s foot kept him pressed face down while he stared at the other two. She watched the animal within him flicker, could almost hear the growl echoing in his chest.

 “I think it’s time you went home.” His voice was cool.

The other two men disappeared. Hunter let his foot go and gave the guy on the ground a shove forward. “You too.”

Riley was too shocked to move. Hunter pulled her arms up and helped her into his jacket.

“Riley, let’s go.”

She took his hand as he pulled her up, let her head fall back as he planted a rough kiss to her lips, before dropping his helmet gently on her head.

 “They’ll be back soon, with more guys and tire irons,” he said grimly. “I’d rather not change and take them all. Not here.”

All she could do was nod, even as he lifted her off the pavement and put her on his motorcycle.

Hunter stood back then, eyeing her. She watched as he rocked back on his feet, eyes set softly on hers. “I’m sorry you had to see that.” He looked guilty. “I didn’t scare you, did I?”

Riley shook her head. The situation had scared her, but Hunter hadn’t. All she’d know for sure was that Hunter wouldn’t let them hurt so much as a hair on her head, and he’d been more in control than she’d expected he could be. Given the threat.

A sad look passed over his face, one she couldn’t read.

 “I know I look like the bad guy, Riley, but I’m not.” He gave her a wry smile, shuffled his boots before meeting her eyes again. “I’m the good guy here. I would never, ever hurt you.”

Riley’s face flushed hot. “I know.” Her voice came out as barely a whisper. “I know.”
About the Author:

RT award winning author Soraya Lane describes being an author as a dream come true. An avid book reader and writer since her childhood, Soraya now divides her time between writing, being a mom and caring for the many animals on her small farm in New Zealand.

In addition to young adult fiction, Soraya also writes contemporary adult romance for Harlequin Mills & Boon. For more information about all her books visit or follow her on twitter @Soraya_Lane.
    To Publish or Not to Publish? 

         When I decided to self-publish my young adult novel, Change, it ended up being an easy decision and one I wished I’d made months ago. Before I say anything else, though, I need to clarify that I really like having a publisher for my adult romance books. My editor is fantastic and I LOVE holding all the various editions of my books in my hands and arranging them on my bookshelf.

            But the reality is that the book publishing industry is changing – possibly faster than most of us can keep up – and I really wanted to dip my toes into the world of self-publishing. It was an incredibly liberating experience when I uploaded my latest release, and it feels great to be in complete control of it.

            I truly believe that self-publishing has opened up a wonderful world of opportunities for authors, but I also think it’s a double-edged sword. Why? Because there’s the temptation as an author to upload a book before it’s ready, or before the author is ready.

            Let me explain… when I look back at my years of receiving rejection letters from editors in my pre-published days, I know that it was a process I had to go through. I like to think of that time as my apprenticeship – learning the craft of writing, honing my skills, and writing books that weren’t really ready for the world to read. In hindsight I’m pleased those stories weren’t published, but at the time when I wrote them, I thought they were fabulous! If self-publishing had been so accessible then, I know I would have rushed into publishing them myself. I also probably wouldn’t have been in a financial position to engage the services of a professional freelance editor, and I now know that doing so is crucial.

            So what do you think? Is self-publishing good for the industry or bad? Do you think it’s the future of publishing? I’d love to know what you think.


For more information about my books, I’d love you to visit me at my website, or connect with me on Twitter @Soraya_Lane. I often do giveaways of my latest releases, and Twitter is the best place to find me!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Interview and Giveaway: Shades of the Future by Suzanne Lilly

It's my pleasure to have Suzanne Lilly here today. She's the authoir of Shades of the Future.

Let's get to know Suzanne!

 Suzanne, do you prefer...
Milk chocolate or Dark?
I know dark chocolate is healthier, but I love the taste of milk chocolate. It’s so smooth and creamy.

Coke or Pepsi?
Coca Cola beats Pepsi any day. I’ll take Pepsi if the restaurant I’m at doesn’t offer Coke, but I’m never happy about it.

Almond Joy or Mounds?
Almond Joy, and only with the milk chocolate coating. I tried one with dark chocolate once, and it just wasn’t the same.

Romance or a Thriller?
I love cross genres, so I have to say I’d pick a thriller, but it needs to have a romance woven into the story line to keep me happy.

Mystery or Horror?
I don’t do horror. It gives me nightmares. I read some books by Stephen King and Dean Koontz years ago, and I still get the heebie jeebies thinking about the stories. Likewise with movies. If there’s blood or anything gruesome, I’ve got my hands over my eyes.

Did you always want to be an author?
Yes. I didn’t take a direct route, because I went to college and majored in accounting. When I realized accounting wasn’t my passion, I went back to school for my teaching credential. Teaching is my fantastic, and it gives me time during breaks to focus on my passion, writing. When I retire from teaching, I want to write full time.

What authors had an impact on you growing up and as an adult?
I have to say Nora Roberts had a big impact on me. When my children were babies, and I was only writing short stories, I read an interview with her. She talked about her writing schedule and how many books she could write each year. I clearly remember thinking, “I want to do what she does.” That desire never left me, and here I am today, glued to my computer, writing. My motto should be, WWND? (What would Nora do?) I’ve always admired her work ethic.

Did anyone in your life influence you or encourage you to be a writer?
My husband has always been my biggest supporter. I’m very lucky to have someone like him in my life. He keeps me going when things get rough. I also have a critique partner who is like gold.

What is your writing atmosphere like?
 I need quiet to write, because I’m easily distracted. For example, today I could hear a bird chirping outside, and I had to go check it out to see which bird it was, where it was, what it was doing. I get up before sunrise when the whole world is quiet, and that’s when my best writing happens.

What is your favorite aspect or writing? Your Least Favorite?
 My favorite part of writing is getting to know the characters. It’s as if I make new friends with each story. My least favorite part is getting up before light o’clock.

Your current book you’re promoting is: Shades of the Future.
It’s the story of Mariah Davis, who finds a magnificent pair of shades in a restaurant booth. Once she puts them on, they show her the future. Unfortunately, not everything she sees is good. When she foresees a tragedy, she finds out she’s unable to change the future, and she has to make the best of things.

How did you come up with the story line?
 I think most people have inklings of things to come from time to time. For example, knowing who’s knocking on the front door before you answer it, that sort of thing. I started wondering, “What if you saw something horrible in your future? What would you do about it?” That question led to the story in Shades of the Future.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
 Mostly I look through baby name lists, and meanings of names, much the same way parents choose names for their children. I try on the names and write a couple of scenes with the characters to see they’re well matched. Often I find a person needs a different name to fit their personality. In my current writing project, several of the characters have had name changes. I also try to avoid names of people I know.

~ Shades of the Future~

What would you do if you could see your future? Would you accept it or would you change it?

Mariah Davis loves animals, running, and her hunk of a boyfriend, Kevin Creamer. Everything looks bright for her until the day she finds a pair of sunglasses that allow her to see the future.
When she glimpses a disaster looming, she tries to avoid it but fails. She has a car accident that lands her in a wheelchair, smashing her hopes for a running scholarship to the veterinary program at Ohio State University. She pushes Kevin away, thinking he’ll want to end their relationship now that she can’t walk.

Will she ever learn to trust and love again? She could search for an answer in the sunglasses. But she’s afraid what they reveal might destroy her.

“You see things?” Eulalie put the remains of her cookie on her saucer and leaned her elbows on the table. She laced her fingers together and rested her chin on her folded hands. “What kinds of things?”

“I don’t want you to think I’m crazy, but I see things that haven’t happened yet,” Mariah blurted out. She went on to tell her about the trig test that day, Hayley’s color-changing outfit, and the hamburger.

“Well, now, that doesn’t seem too bad.” Eulalie stirred her tea even though she hadn’t put any sugar in it. She took a sip.

“So you don’t think it’s strange?” Mariah asked.

Eulalie put her cup down. She shook her head. “I didn’t say that. Have you seen anything else? Anything that might involve other people? Something that might be a burden to you?”

Mariah shook her head no.

“That’s a good thing.” The words meant one thing, but the way Eulalie cleared her throat and looked away made Mariah think that it wasn’t what she truly thought. “If I were you, I’d be careful with them.”

“What do you mean?”

“When you start messing around with fortune telling and seeing the future, sooner or later you might see things you don’t want to know about.”

Watch the Trailer!

AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Suzanne Lilly is a writer at night and a teacher by day, which is why she’s known online as the TeacherWriter. Her articles and stories have appeared in numerous places online and in print. She writes light romance, young adult, and middle grade novels. When not busy with words, she enjoys swimming, hiking, reading, fine arts, and cooking. She lives in California with her family and furry friends and has yet to feel an earthquake.
You can follow her on Twitter as @suzannelilly,  visit her blog at, or her author website at

TeacherWriter blog:
Fridays at Honey Creek blog:
Follow @SuzanneLilly on Twitter:
Available at Amazon and most online book retailers in digital or paperback.

~ Giveaway~

Suzanne will be awarding pair of designer sunglasses to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour (US/Canada only). To enet just leave a comment on this post with your eamil address.

For more chances to win follow her tour by clicking the link below!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Spotlight & Giveway: Phantom by Laura DeLuca

The “Phantom” was a musical phenomenon that Rebecca had always found enchanting. She had no idea that her life was about to mirror the play that was her obsession. When her high school drama club chooses “Phantom” as their annual production, Rebecca finds herself in the middle of an unlikely love triangle and the target of a sadistic stalker who uses the lines from the play as their calling card.
Rebecca lands the lead role of Christine, the opera diva, and like her character, she is torn between her two co-stars—Tom the surfer and basketball star who plays the lovable hero, and Justyn, the strangely appealing Goth who is more than realistic in the role of the tortured artist.

Almost immediately after casting, strange things start to happen both on and off the stage. Curtains fall. Mirrors are shattered. People are hurt in true phantom style. They all seem like accidents until Rebecca receives notes and phone calls that hint at something more sinister. Is Justyn bringing to life the twisted character of the phantom? Or in real life are the roles of the hero and the villain reversed? Rebecca doesn’t know who to trust, but she knows she’s running out of time as she gets closer and closer to opening night. Only when the mask is stripped away, will the twenty first century phantom finally be revealed.


It sounded more like a question than an audition call. Miss King looked slightly baffled as she scanned her paperwork and read the last name on her list of male candidates. Once she was certain she had read the name correctly, she called it out once more with a little more confidence. When she received no immediate response, she seemed ready to dismiss the whole thing as a joke. But then a strange black clad figure seemed to materialize in the corner of the stage, and with practiced grace, he moved towards the center of the platform and the waiting microphone.

“That’s Justyn Patko,” Carmen informed Rebecca matter-of-factly. Luckily her best friend was the queen of gossip. “He just moved here this year. From Vegas, I think. He’s in my Calculus class.”

“He’s a little creepy if you ask me,” Debbie whispered.

Creepy he might have been to some, with his black clothes trimmed with silver chains, black hair, and black fingernails. He was obviously Gothic to the core, a fashion statement Rebecca had always thought was secretly a cry for attention. But for Justyn, there seemed no other possibility. She couldn’t imagine the darkly mysterious figure dressed in earth tones or preppy, button-down shirts. They would have clashed with his dark eyes and pale skin. She had seen him in the hallway a few times, but they didn’t share any classes together, so Rebecca had never really taken the time to study him before. Despite his odd style, there was something strangely appealing about Justyn. In his own way, he was just as handsome as Tom.

The orchestra tuned for its virtuoso, and Justyn stood ready. But no one else was ready for the magical performance he began. Beside her, Carmen was rambling on about something mundane. Rebecca elbowed her to silence so she could listen to the perfectly thrilling tenor. As she listened to the song unfold, the world around her started to slip away. Gone was the high school auditorium. Gone were the rowdy teenagers. The Gothic stranger on the stage had become the embodiment of Erik, and Rebecca watched him in all his dark glory, belting out his tormented love through the words of his song. And she was as breathless with wonder as Christine herself must have been when the masked stranger serenaded her in the candlelit labyrinth of the opera house. In that moment, Justyn wasn’t just portraying the phantom. Justyn was the phantom.

“Let the music touch your soul.
Let the darkness make you whole.
Do not fear what is unknown.
Your true path has now been shown.
Listen to the words I sing.
Embrace the peace that night will bring.”

As he continued to sing in his deep but somehow angelic voice, Rebecca found that she couldn’t tear her eyes away from him. With every line, her heart began to beat faster. She truly felt the arms of night wrapping her in a warm embrace. She could almost feel the hands of the phantom glide along her body as the words poured forth. The music caressed her. It possessed her—mind, body and soul. Each word left her longing, yearning for more.

She was gawking so obviously, it was hardly surprising when Justyn felt her eyes on him and steadily met her gaze. She realized her mouth was hanging open in stunned awe, and she quickly snapped it shut. His lips moved into just a small hint of a smile. He never took his eyes off her while he sang the final verse, making her cheeks flush to the point that she felt almost feverish. But it wasn’t embarrassment but excitement, arousal even, which was sending her mind spinning in so many directions.

When the song was over, and Rebecca had recovered just a hint of her composure, she couldn’t help but burst into a healthy round of applause. A few scattered people joined in, including Debbie and Carmen after she nudged them in the ribs. But only Miss King seemed to truly appreciate the brilliance of his talent as much as Rebecca did.

“That was amazing, Justyn!” the teacher gushed.

“Lord Justyn,” he corrected as he stepped down from the stage.

A few others complimented him as well, but he took in all in stride. In fact, his serious expression never faltered as he stepped down from the stage. He seemed almost bored, like it was all he could do to hold back a yawn, despite the smiles and words of encouragement.

But not everyone in the crowd was pleased as Justyn glided down the aisle, so ethereal in his dark garments that he still resonated the spirit of the Opera Ghost. Miss King might have been excited about the newest male addition to her cast after being limited for many years, but Tom and his group of boisterous companions glared at him as he passed them by. Jay sneered and tossed a balled up piece of paper in Justyn’s direction, but the Goth was quick, and caught it in his hand without missing a beat.

“I think you dropped something,” he said.

His speaking voice was no less melodic than his singing voice, but something about his tone made Rebecca shiver. He tossed the paper back at Jay, who was nowhere near as coordinated as Justyn. He practically fell off his seat in his efforts to catch it.

“Hey vampire,” Tom called when Justyn went to walk away. “Are you sure you can handle the competition?”

Justyn smiled, a cool, sarcastic half-smile, and crossed his arms over his chest. “Are you?”

Miss King didn’t notice the short confrontation, and Justyn vanished from the auditorium as quickly and mysteriously as he had appeared. Only Rebecca had noticed the very real tension between the two boys. She wondered if it was a bad omen for them to start off the production with hard feelings and envy. That could only lead to trouble. The kind of trouble that could end with someone getting hurt. The kind of trouble that Rebecca would do whatever it took to avoid.

Buy Links: 
Amazon        Barnes & Noble      Smashwords       Book Depositary      Shelfari

Author Bio:
Laura "Luna" DeLuca lives at the beautiful Jersey shore with her husband and three children. She has been writing stories for as long as she can remember. Old high school friends would tell you she was always scratching in her notebook instead of paying attention in class and the children she used to babysit for always loved to hear her scary stories at bedtime. In addition to writing fiction, Laura is also the sole author of a popular review blog called New Age Mama. She is an active member of her local pagan community, and has been studying Wicca for close to eight years.  She loves writing young adult novels, because it keeps her young at heart. She is the author of three published works including Destiny, Destiny Unveiled, and Phantom, and has several more projects in the works.
Author Links:   Site      Twitter      Facebook      Goodreads 

One Phantom Prize Pack, It includes a signed copy of the book, a geode , two full size boxes of incense, a mini pack of incense with holder, two rough crystal points, a crystal cluster, a crystal pendant, a stone vile pendant, and a sage smudge stick.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Interview and Giveaway: Sykosa by Justin Ordoñez

Sykosa (that's "sy"-as-in-"my" ko-sa) is a sixteen-year-old girl trying to reclaim her identity after an act of violence shatters her life and the life of her friends. This process is complicated by her best friend, Niko, a hyper-ambitious, type-A personality who has started to war with other girls for social supremacy of their school, a prestigious preparatory academy in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. To compensate, Sykosa has decided to fall in love with her new boyfriend, Tom, who was involved in the act of violence. Propelled by survivor guilt, an anxiety disorder, and her hunger for Tom and his charms, Sykosa attends a weekend-long, unchaperoned party at Niko's posh vacation cottage, where she will finally confront Niko on their friendship, her indecision about her friends and their involvement in the act of violence, and she will make the biggest decision of her life—whether or not she wants to lose her virginity to Tom. YA fiction for the 18+ crowd.

 It's my pleasure to have Justin Ordoñez on my site today.

Justin, tell us about yourself.

My name’s Justin Ordoñez. I’m author of Sykosa. I’m thirty years old, live in Seattle, Washington, and I’ve been told that I’ve got really great hair. It’s long, black and kinda shapes well around my jaw. I’ve always wanted long hair but my parents convinced me when I was young that women hated long hair on a man, something that I can now confidently report to you is TOTALLY FALSE. I started growing it out when I was 17 and I really like it. It’s the first time I’ve had hair that I feel fits me. Other that that strange tidbit about me, I like playing games on my iPhone or iPad, I’m currently watching The Wonder Years on Netflix streaming, and I just saw the episode where Kevin and Winnie have their first kiss. It was really touching for me because the background music is Elton John’s “Seasons” from the little known Friends soundtrack. It’s such a beautiful song, and every time I’ve heard it, I’ve thought of my first love, so it was a strange moment where art became something incredibly real and true for me.

Do you prefer

Milk chocolate or Dark?

Used to be milk, but it’s dark now for sure. I think that’s a sign you’re a grown up.
Coke or Pepsi?

I’m one of those rare people who switches, but while I’m currently on the Coke bandwagon, the majority of my life I’ve been a Pepsi guy.
Almond Joy or Mounds?
 Neither. I only like chewy candies, tbh.

Romance or a Thriller?

Thriller. I’m a guy like that.

Mystery or Horror?
Mystery, hands down.

Did you always want to be an author?

Yeah, I sorta did. I just really wanted to write. I was really insecure about my struggles learning how to read and write when I was young and I thought that writing something really awesome would prove all those insecurities wrong. I didn’t really write at first because I loved it, it was a tool for me to get back at all the smarter kids who were getting by so much easier than I was.

What authors had an impact on you growing up and as an adult?

Growing up I got exposed to a lot of great authors like Shel Silverstein, Roald Dahl, RL Stein, lots of things that get kids excited about reading. I was a huge fan of Garfield and I loved everything about the cartoon strip. I owned all the compilation books and I would read them nightly and just chuckle. It’s strange because I never got into Peanuts, Family Circus, Calvin and Hobbs or any of the other really big cartoon strips, to this day, I’ve only liked Garfield and I consider Jim Davis to be the absolute best at it. As I got older, authors made an impression on me, though I’ve never read an author obsessively like I would when I was young. I tend to study fiction when I’m reading it now instead of enjoying it, so it’s not as fun. I read a lot of non-fiction, though.
Did anyone in your life influence you or encouraged you to be a writer? (teacher, family member, friend)

I had a few great teachers who were really there for me as I was finding myself as a writer. Bill Boyle, Cindy Boughner, and Bruce Kezlarian. They all were interested in my work and they supported me in one way or another. Actually, to this day all three support me. I had other great teachers, but in terms of writing, these were the Holy Trinity for me.

What is your writing atmosphere like?
I write anywhere for however long I can manage. I just need some tunes playing in my ears, that’s the only requirement.

Your current book your promoting is:
Sykosa (that’s “sy”-as-in-“my” ko-sa).
It’s a story about a sixteen-year-old girl who’s trying to reclaim her identity after an act of violence shatters her life and the life of her friends. This process is complicated by her best friend, Niko, a hyper-ambitious, type-A personality who has started to war with other girls for social supremacy of their school, a prestigious preparatory academy in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. To compensate, Sykosa has decided to fall in love with her new boyfriend, Tom, who was involved in the act of violence. Propelled by survivor guilt, an anxiety disorder, and her hunger for Tom and his charms, Sykosa attends a weekend-long, unchaperoned party at Niko's posh vacation cottage, where she will finally confront Niko on their friendship, her indecision about her friends and their involvement in the act of violence, and she will make the biggest decision of her life—whether or not she wants to lose her virginity to Tom.

How did you come up with the story line?

It developed over several years. Some things from desire, some things for necessity. I wanted the story to be radically unique in execution, so I used innovative narration technique and character profiles (especially for teenagers), but I put it in a very stereo-typical school, using very predictable and time-tested clichés, like the hard-ass Vice-Principal, the apathetic teacher you wish inspired you, groups, bullying, things like that. It creates a kind of tension in the book that seems to have both really entertained people and driven some near insanity, particularly at the cliff hanger ending!

How do you choose your characters names?

I’m not a huge fan of the name choosing process. Sometimes I just pick a name and write it until the character decides for him/herself what the name should be. Sykosa was always Sykosa, but Niko was at first Miko (a more traditional Japanese name), but Niko didn’t like that. Mackenzie’s name used to be Molly, which I hated from the start, and I couldn’t have been more grateful when Mackenzie jumped into my brain one day. Usually, I have to know a lot about the character and then a great name representing them comes to mind.

Hey! Justin Ordoñez wrote a book called Sykosa. It’s about a sixteen year old girl who’s trying to reclaim her identity after an act of violence destroys her life and the lives of her friends. You can find out more about Justin at his blog, You can also find Sykosa, the novel on Amazon.


Outside, the sun shines. Inside, there’s only darkness. The blackness is hard to describe, as it’s more than symptoms. It’s a nothing that becomes everything there is. And what one sees is only a fraction of the trauma inflicted. It can get so bad she literally goes black, and she wakes up seconds, minutes, hours—who knows—later, to the silence, and the shame, and the… The blackness is really a panic-attack. She thinks that’s its medical definition. She’s never consulted anyone about it, but she heard a daytime TV personality talking about it once and all the hairs stood on up on her neck and she thought, That’s me. The TV personality said trauma plays a significant role. That made her feel broken, so she decided not to listen anymore and to pretend like nothing was wrong. That’s why no one knows about the blackness—her pretending won’t let them.



"… gritty, intense and definitely not a book I'll forget anytime soon! It was so differently written. I wouldn't have expected to fall in love with the writing style but I did. It practically made me get under Sykosa's skin despite getting a dose of the perspectives of the other characters and there were parts that were so lyrical." ~ On Books

"Justin Ordonez’s debut novel, Sykosa Part 1: Junior Year, disproves the old saw that youth is wasted on the young. He adroitly delves into the minds and social lives of his titular sixteen-year-old protagonist and her peers, showing that young people wrestle with tough decisions just like adults do." ~Clarion ForeWord Reviews

"Sykosa makes for some compelling reading. Older teens and adults alike will enjoy Ordoñez's tale for its humor, realism and relatable protagonist."

~ Kirkus Indie Review



Justin Ordoñez was born in Spain, raised in the mid-west, and currently lives in Seattle. He's nearly thirty years old, almost graduated from the University of Washington, and prefers to wait until TV shows come out on DVD so he can watch them in one-shot while playing iPad games. For fifteen years, he has written as a freelance writer, occasionally doing pieces as interesting as an editorial, but frequently helping to craft professional documents or assisting in the writing of recommendation letters for people who have great praise for friends or colleagues and struggle to phrase it. Sykosa is his debut novel.



Justin will be giving away a $50 gift card to one randomly drawn commenter at the end of the tour. To enter leave a comment with your eamil address.

For more chances to win follow Justin's Goddess Fish Tour

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A Howl in the Night by Courtney Rene Interview & Giveaway

Sweet Sixteen is supposed to be a turning point in your life.  The world is before you in all its glory, just waiting for you to reach out and grab it.  Right?  For Abigail Staton, no.  Not so much.  Not only does she suddenly lose her best friend due to a fight, but out of the blue her mother expects her to believe that the father, she has never met, is actually a werewolf.  With that revelation, Abby is thrust into the world of two wolf clans who are not only fighting each other, but also fighting for Abby, one of the few females born to the shape-shifters.  Her father is determined to pair Abby up with Derek, a very dominant and overwhelming shifter.  Abby vehemently balks at this union to disastrous results.  When war is declared between the two clans, Abby has to decide what side she is actually on. 

It's my pleasure to have Courtney Rene here today!

Courtney, tell us about yourself...

This is always such a hard question for me.  I can never decide on what information to share.  What do people really want to know?  So here’s a grab bag of information.  I’m the mother of two daughters:  Sidney, almost 17; and Seren 10.  I am married to my high school love and plan to stay that way.  I am a lover of animals, any kind and every kind.  Currently I have one dog, two hamsters, and a plethora of fish.  I enjoy gardening both in flowers and veggies.  I have an orchard that is extremely time consuming that consists of peaches, pears, plums, cherries, and one sad little apple tree that the deer keep trying to eat to death.  I spend my free time, what little there is, reading. I read anything and everything that catches my eye.  I am always looking for recommendations to good reads, so if you happen to have one, shoot me an email.  I have a kindle and it’s always ready.

As a writer I have written for magazines, both fiction and non; I have several contributions to anthologies; and I now have three published novels, Shadow Dancer, Shadow Warrior, and my newest release, A Howl in the Night.  If you are interested, you can find a complete listing on my blog (

Do you prefer

Milk chocolate or Dark?
Milk Chocolate.  Oh I know dark is better for you but, that doesn’t change my taste buds any. 
Coke or Pepsi?
Neither, I prefer Mt. Dew.  If I have to choose between Coke or Pepsi, then I choose Coke. 

Almond Joy or Mounds?
Bleeeackk.  Neither!  Don’t like coconut at all.  It’s a texture thing.  Ew.

Romance or a Thriller?
Both.  Some days I am in the mood for romance…some times I’m in the mood for some thriller action.  Some days I want both in one, which is when I turn to….Catherine Coulter.  She has a good romance/thriller series.
Mystery or Horror?
I prefer horror over mystery.  I like monsters and mayhem over trying to figure out the game.  Mysteries are one of the few genres I am not a huge fan of.  I know, its weird.   

Did you always want to be an author?
Yes, in some form or another. There were periods of time that I wanted to be other things like a flight attendant in the fifth grade, and a veterinarian in the eighth.  But as it was more fun to tell stories about flight attendants ingesting mold and turning into zombies or a vet getting bitten by a werewolf, I would say being an author has always been in my future. 
What authors had an impact on you growing up and as an adult?
VC Andrews
Stephen King
Anne Rice
Dean Koonz.

Did anyone in your life influence you or encouraged you to be a writer?
Not particularly.  I did have one teacher that almost turned me away from it, but only because I struggled so hard with grammar.  I could tell or write a great story, but it would come back to me dripping in red ink and a big fat ‘F’ across the top almost every time.  It frustrated me almost to the point of giving up.  It took me a long time to realize he was trying to help me.  He did. 
What is your writing atmosphere like?
I don’t really have an atmosphere.  I can write just about anywhere.  I write in the midst of a loud, music blaring dance studio several times a week.  I write at the park sprawled out on the grass or at a picnic table on my lunch break.  I write notes and story lines while standing in line at the bank.  I write in front of the tv.  As long as I have pencil and paper or my laptop, I can write. 

What is your favorite aspect or writing? Your Least Favorite?
My favorite aspect is the writing down of the story.  That’s the best part.  Seeing where it will go and how it will all end.  I love that.  I am a seat of your pants writer.  I don’t know where the story will actually go until I sit down and write it. 

My least guessed it, the grammar part.  Uck.  I struggle and struggle with that.  I fix and then second guess.  I comma then remove.  It takes longer to grammar up my manuscripts than it does to actually write the thing!  I hate grammar. 
Your current book your promoting is:
My newest release is:  A Howl in the Night.  It’s a shape shifter story about love, power, friends, and best of all, werewolves!  Now this is not the usual “Oh no!  I’m a werewolf,” story.  This is a “Woo hoo!  I’m a werewolf,” story.  Is this an offshoot of me?  Of course it is!  I personally think being a werewolf that could control when they shifted, would be so awesome.  The strength, the power, the fierce instincts, oh yes, that would be extremely fun. Can you just imagine?

There is not, tear your face off, violence in this book.  It really is a coming of age story with a paranormal twist.  Add in a love triangle, two warring families, one headstrong girl, and you have the fun, romp in the woods story, that A Howl in the Night, is. 
How did you come up with the story line?
I was sick of the stories where the main character, spends the entire book trying to not be a werewolf.  It annoyed me.  Here they have this great gift and they want to get rid of it?  So I wrote a story that didn’t annoy me. 

How do you choose your characters names?
Usually on a whim.  I have had a thing for the name William, since Heath Ledger in A Knight’s Tale, so my use of that name is not surprising to me.  In another of my books, there is a group of fire people.  They needed to have fun fire names or red names.  So I came up with names like:  Cinder and Brick.  For normal places and times, I use normal everyday names like Brian or Tara.  I don’t have any set method for name choice.  I just play with names until they sound right to me. 

Then a new thought crashed into my brain.  “Wait a sec.  If my father is a werewolf . . .,”

“Not a werewolf, just a wolf,” my mom said interrupting me.

“Okay fine,” I said.  If her story was true though, I had to wonder, what did that make me?  It was my turn to pop up off the bed and pace around.  What about me?  Was I going to grow hair and fangs and run around trying to bite people?  “Oh, God.”

It felt as if my life was over.  How was I supposed to finish school if I turned into a wolf every time the moon was full? 

Would it hurt to change?  It always looked like it did in the movies.  I had seen that werewolf movie where the guy runs around London eating people.  The change was always accompanied with screaming and pain.  Was I going to hunt down my friends and family and eat them?

I didn’t know if that was really how it worked or not, but before I could work myself up into a real freak fest, my mom said, “I have watched you all your life Abby, and I have never seen anything wolf-like about of you.  I promise.  That worry has always been in the back of my mind, but nothing has ever come of it.  You’re fine.  Come on, you don’t even like meat.” 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:
 Courtney Rene lives in Ohio with her husband and two children.  She is a graduate and member of the Institute of Children’s Literature.  Her writings include magazine articles, short fiction stories, several anthologies, and her Shadow Dancer series, published through Rogue Phoenix Press.  For a complete listing, visit www.ctnyrene.blogspot com. 

 Feel free to contact her at


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