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Book Excerpt The Girl Who Talks to Ghosts

Book Excerpt

The woman was hysterical, sobbing so much I couldn’t understand her. As I pressed my cell harder against my ear, the wind sprouted claws and slashed at my meager sweater until I shivered. Phone calls used to be rare, but I’d been getting more and more since Jackson and I had gone public with what had happened to us in China. Now everyone in Vermont seemed to know my name, and they all needed help.

“Hello? This is Kate, please talk to me.”

The crying increased in volume, blistering my ears. I would have hung up if not for the wind. Its power intensified, churning the dead leaves and other debris from the sidewalk around my feet. There was something strange about its sudden force, which drove me against the brick facing of Hildy’s Fine China & Sundries. (Hildy’d had an ampersand before it was trendy.)

“Hello?” The single word contained the edge of my fear. Both my voice and hands were shaking. Something did not want me to talk to this woman. Something did not want me to help her. I’d taken hundreds of similar calls over the past few years, but had never felt anything like this. “Please say something. I’m afraid we’re going to lose our connection.”

Clutching at my sweater to keep it from being blown away, I ducked my head, shielding my face as my hair whipped around in a furious tangle. I huddled against Hildy’s shop, wondering if I should go in, but the older woman wouldn’t be impressed to see me on my phone. Her establishment was a temple, a library. The loyal customers who kept her in business spoke in whispers and walked on tiptoes. By bursting in like this and continuing my shouted, one-sided conversation, I’d have become the proverbial bull. Not good.

“Miss Carlsson? Kate Carlsson?” The woman had regained her composure enough to gasp my name. The grip around my heart tightened, even though I’d known all along the call was meant for me.

“Yes, speaking. What’s wrong?” There was no point wasting time with idle chitchat. Obviously something was wrong—very wrong. Another gust of wind knocked my skull against the side of the building and pain jolted through my brain.

The caller was silent for so long I ordinarily would have assumed she’d hung up, lost her nerve. It happened. It wasn’t easy for people to admit they needed my help. It was a leap of faith, a willingness to open their minds to the possibility that something they’d spent their entire lives denying could be real after all.

But the wind told me otherwise. I waited for her to speak again, raising one arm between my face and the building to protect my head. The chill had seeped into my bones, and what I wanted more than anything was to run home and immerse myself in a steaming hot bath while I drank a cup of the pumpkin spice tea I’d just purchased. I didn’t want to talk to this woman. I didn’t want to hear about what terrible things were happening at her home, for surely terrible things were happening. But I’d learned long ago that my gift was bigger than me, and if this woman needed it, I wasn’t going to turn away from her.

Finally she spoke. I could barely hear her over the gale, which shrieked like a tortured soul. “My mother is attacking my child.” Her voice trembled with fresh tears. “I can’t believe it, haven’t wanted to believe it, but it’s true. I’ve seen it.”

“Is your mother dead, Mrs…”

“Walkins. My name is Walkins. Yes, she died last year. But she was such a good woman. She loved Lily. I can’t believe she would do these things. Why would she do these things?”

I could feel curious eyes burning into me, watching me struggle to stay on my feet. Pushing my hair away from my face, I risked a glimpse and was immediately sorry I had. The leaves around my feet had arranged themselves in the form of a girl, a girl not much shorter than me. As I stared, my pulse throbbing behind my temples, the terrifying apparition raised a rustling arm toward me before collapsing onto the sidewalk.

“Whatever is hurting Lily isn’t your mother, Mrs. Walkins. What’s your address? I’ll be right there.”

About the Books

City of Ghosts

On the day the villagers were forced to flee Hensu, not everyone got out alive.

Jackson Stone is touring the abandoned Chinese city when he slips away from the group to spend the night, determined to publish an account of his ghostly experiences there.

Then he meets Yuèhai, a strange, soft-spoken woman who can tell him the city’s secrets—secrets the Chinese government would kill to keep hidden.

As Jackson uncovers the truth about Yuèhai and the ghost city, he’s drawn into a web of conspiracy, betrayal, and murder. He must risk everything to save himself and bring honor back to Yuèhai and her family.

 

 

The Girl Who Talks to Ghosts

Would you risk everything to save a stranger?

 Off the coast of Venice lurks Poveglia, the world’s most haunted isle, steeped in centuries of innocent blood. A deranged doctor who took great joy in torturing his patients in life continues to rule his abandoned asylum after death.

Few go to Poveglia willingly, but medium Kate Carlsson has no choice. It’s her job.

While struggling to retrieve a young girl’s soul, Kate uncovers some shocking truths about the evil on the island that challenges her own convictions and morals—and even her life.

Is saving Lily worth making a deal with the infamous Doctor of Death, or is the price too high to pay?

 

 

Author Bio

J.H. Moncrieff’s work has been described as early Gillian Flynn with a little Ray Bradbury and Stephen King thrown in for good measure.

She won Harlequin’s search for the next Gillian Flynn in 2016.

Her first published novella, The Bear Who Wouldn’t Leave, was featured in Samhain’s Childhood Fears collection and stayed on its horror bestsellers list for over a year.

When not writing, she loves exploring the world’s most haunted places, advocating for animal rights, and summoning her inner ninja in muay thai class.

To get free eBooks and a new spooky story every week, go to http://bit.ly/MoncrieffLibrary .

 

Connect with J.H.: Website | Twitter | Facebook

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Book Excerpt Grandpa Bernie’s Bedtime Stories

Book Excerpt

From “Jodie’s Magic Balloon”

 

There was a stand with beautiful balloons of all colors and shapes. They were on long strings and floated high in the air.

Jodie grabbed her father’s hand and pulled him right to the stand. When the man selling the balloons saw her, he winked and said, “I have a special magic balloon just for you, Jodie.”

“How do you know my name?” she asked, surprised.

“I’m a magician,” he said. “And when I made this balloon, I saw it had instructions stating that it was only to be given to a little girl named Jodie.”

“But how did you know that was me?”

“Oh,” the magician said with a smile. “That was easy. The instructions also said I would recognize her because she has the tiniest nose you ever saw and the sweetest smile. As soon as I saw you, I know you were that person.”

The man gave Jodie a very large and beautiful balloon. It had every color of the rainbow and sparkled like gold in the sunlight.

“Oh,” said Jodie. “It”s beautiful. But why is this a magic balloon?”

The magician smiled again. “When you crawl inside this wonderful balloon, it will obey everything you ask it to do. Would you like to try it?”

“Oh, yes!” Jodie cried excitedly, and she crawled inside the balloon. “It’s very comfortable in here. Now what do I do?”

“Just tell the balloon to go anywhere you like,” answered the magician with another smile.

“Please take me high into the sky, even higher than the clouds” instructed Jodie.

About the Book

Title: Grandpa Bernie’s Bedtime Stories

Author: Bernard Ditchik

Genre: Children’s Books

These delightful tales are sure to help your little ones settle down and drift contentedly off to sleep.  Written by a grandfather for his own kids and grandchildren, these eighteen entertaining stories feature lots of talking animals, including a kangaroo who teaches a pony how to jump, a little bear who wants to play baseball, a coyote who learns to fly, a magic balloon that takes a little girl all the way to Japan and back, and some resourceful ants who build a swimming pool so they can play as well as work.  It’s full of positive images and plots that inspire creative solutions to various challenges.  A lovely read-aloud adventure the whole family will enjoy!

 

Author Bio

I didn’t begin my career as an author by writing stories. First, I was a storyteller. Let me explain. Many years ago, when our children were very young, I would sit on their beds at bedtime and tell them a story. Instead of reading a story written by someone else, I preferred to make up my own story right on the spot. They were stories about animals who learned to fly, children who talked to birds, alligators who were friends with elephants, and even one about a horse that learned to jump like a kangaroo. Our children loved them. So I made up lot of stories. Then there was a long period of time when there was no one who wanted to listen to my stories because they had all grown up!

But then, something wonderful happened. We had our first grandchild—and I became Grandpa Bernie. One day, one of my daughters said, “Dad, you have so many stories. I think other children would like to hear them.” That’s when I became an author.

At the age of 93, I am still playing tennis (doubles only) five times a week in a 60+ league. I have been married 64 years to my wonderful wife, Faigie, had three children, and five grandchildren. I continue to sit in my favorite chair, with a large pad on my lap, and a pen in my hand, lean back, and let my imagination soar.

 

Links

Red Sky Presents Grandpa Bernie’s Bedtime Stories

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Book Excerpt The Fairytale Chicago of Francesca Finnigan

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The Lavender Line

“What’s your favorite color?”

Francesca asked Rich the all-important color question after she’d introduced herself and they’d risen from the leafy park grounds. The color question was Francesca’s favorite, along with, “Can you play?” Richard the hops-drinking vice president of something preferred, “What do you do?” or, “Where do you golf?” Sadly, this was the second-to-last time Rich would answer the color question, and so marked the beginning of the end for him. Once people stop asking you what your favorite color is, you’re done for.

Rich decided then and there his favorite color was something like her hair. “Blue,” he said. “You?”

“Red. Reminds me of my red friend, the esteemed Mr. Fox, of the Red Line.” Rich wasn’t sure who or what she meant by her red friend, the esteemed Mr. Fox, of the Red Line, but decided against any questioning on the subject. She might think it rude, or stupid—he wasn’t exactly sure what the word “esteemed” meant.

“Let’s see, blue and red, red and blue, blue and red,” Francesca thought aloud. “Mix those two, add a dash of stardust, and we have a lavender. That’s settled, tonight we’ll go for a Lavender Line ride.”

Here, Rich felt he should correct her. She could talk about esteemed foxes all she wanted, but when it came to city trains, he was the expert. His uncle was employed by the Chicago Transportation Authority in an important office job, and had educated him in all there was to know about city transportation. Rich was sure there was no Lavender Line. There were the Red, Orange, Purple, Green, Blue, Pink, and Yellow lines. Definitely no Lavender in there. Maybe she’d meant Purple.

About the Book

ftalechicago-cover-imageTitle: The Fairytale Chicago of Francesca Finnegan

Author: Steve Wiley

Genre: Fantasy

“Did you know most anything that matters in this city was built by magic before it was built by men? Of course you didn’t. This city is different from other cities. The true history of it is unpublished. Lucky for you, I know it all by heart.”

~ Francesca Finnegan

In Chicago, a secret L train runs through the mythical East Side of the city. On that train, you’ll find a house-cat conductor, an alcoholic elf, a queen of the last city farm, the most curious wind, and an exceptional girl by the name of Francesca Finnegan.

When we first encounter Richard K. Lyons, he is a man who has long forgotten the one night, when he was still a boy called Rich, when Francesca invited him aboard the secret L for an adventure though the East Side. The night was a mad epic, complete with gravity-defying first kisses, mermaid overdoses, and princess rescues. Unfortunately for Rich, the night ended like one of those elusive dreams forgotten the moment you wake. Now, Rich is all grown up and out of childish adventures, an adult whose life is on the verge of ruin. It will take the rediscovery of his exploits with Francesca, and a reacquaintance with the boy he once was, to save him.

Author Bio

Steve is a father, husband, uncle, brother, friend, and purveyor of fairy stories. He grew up in and around Chicagoland, where he still lives with his wife and two kids. He has been published in an array of strange and serious places, from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C., to Crannóg magazine in Galway, Ireland. This is his first book. He has an undergraduate degree in something he has forgotten from Illinois State University and a graduate degree in something equally forgotten from DePaul University. You can email Steve at Lavenderlinepress@gmail.com, or visit thewileymancan on Instagram.

Illustrator Bio

Chris is an artist who studied at Columbia College Chicago. He is a Chicago native and has lived here all his life. Chris’s paintings have been showcased in many local galleries and beyond. When he feels like it, he travels elsewhere to find inspiration. You can reach him at Chris.cihon@gmail.com, or visit _ccihon on Instagram.

Links

Book Website: www.fairytalechicago.com

Facebook Page

Kirkus Review

Amazon

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Book Excerpt On Top of the World

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Book Excerpt

The devil doesnt wear Prada, he wears Sean John and I was the idiot who taught him how to shop.

That was what I got for reading Frankenstein in college. Id been turned into a mad scientist without even realizing it. Just my luck, I was a math major and the one literature course I took had tricked me into creating a monster.

When I first met Scrooʝe, he—like most humans with XY chromosomes—was a fashion emergency. Awkwardly walking around campus—lost, desperately in need of a haircut, and for some strange reason wearing glasses so big he looked like an owl hunting for prey.

 He was just plain pitiful.

Though I have to confess, from the moment I saw him my heart sang a happy song and I couldnt look away. Something between us was magnetic.

What can I say? I was always the kind of girl who liked rescue projects. When I was eight years old, I turned my familys garage into a makeshift animal shelter and damn near gave my father a heart attack when a hungry pack of strays rushed at him as he pulled into the driveway.

So naturally, one look into Scrooʝes sad, puppy dog eyes and I felt right away—he was the one.

Before I knew it, we were college sweethearts and the best of friends. Of course, I had to clean him up; but after a few months under my tutelage, everyone noticed his transformation. They saw that with his gorgeous toffee skin, deliciously full lips, and sexy broad shoulders, he was the cutest boy on campus. Pretty soon I had girls telling me I needed to start a makeover service.

That was how it all started. Who could’ve known a simple makeover would unleash the devilish genius of the sweetest, shyest, most socially awkward boy I’d ever met? Or that he’d be transformed into music’s biggest superstar with an ego the size of Texas yet more fragile than an egg yolk? Certainly not me.

About the Book

51QnnmV6blL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_Title: On Top of the World

Author: David Lamb

Genre: Contemporary, African-American Romance

2016 BEST FICTION-Pacific Book Awards. FROM THE FUNNY AND NATURALLY BRILLIANT DAVID LAMB, award-winning playwright of the New York Times celebrated play, Platanos Y Collard Greens, comes a modern spin on Dickens’ classic tale that perfectly combines humor and romance in a story re-imagined for our digital, consumerist age.  This version of Scrooge and Belle is familiar, yet unlike any you’ve come across before. Scrooge, or rather Scrooje, is music’s biggest superstar, with one hundred million albums sold, fifteen million devoted YouTube subscribers, two and a half million Facebook likes, and twenty-five million fanatical Twitter followers known as Scroojites. Belle, is a legal shark who gulps down her opposition voraciously and whose beauty and stunning figure causes traffic accidents as she zips through the sidewalks of Manhattan stylishly adorned and taking no prisoners.   They never imagined being music’s most powerful couple, but that’s exactly what happened when Belle fell head over heels and gave the Coke-bottle glasses wearing, plaid and stripe attired, scrawny, biggest nerd on her college campus the ultimate makeover, turning him into a fashion impresario whose style sets trends from Milan to NY Fashion Week and who can be seen courtside at the NBA Finals sporting a perfectly-fitted cashmere suit.   Then it happens. Belle realizes too late that she’s created a chart-topping monster as Scrooje’s ego explodes and he starts acting a fool.   Now, it’s been three years since they ve spoken. But tonight at Hollywood s biggest red carpet event, with the whole world watching, they’ll be given a second chance.

Author Bio

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David Lamb is a native New Yorker, born and raised, bitten with the writing bug since he was in elementary school and had handwriting nobody could decipher. Like Charles Dickens, David grew up a poor boy in the big city who found that the pen really is mightier than the sword.  After finishing college David went on to law school at NYU, but all the time writing was still his heart. While working as a lawyer by day, at night he transformed into a writer and eventually wrote and produced the award-winning hit off-Broadway romantic comedy Platanos Y Collard Greens. Being a writer and having the chance make people laugh out loud while challenging them to think about the world around them, and inspire each of us to believe in the power of love and our own ability to overcome life’s challenges is a great gift that David truly enjoys and thanks you for allowing him to share with you in On Top Of The World (Until The Bell Chimes)

Links

davidlamb.club
@authordavidlamb

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Book Excerpt The Adventures of Fawn Series

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Book Excerpt

          With her teeth, Fawn gently grabbed Bunny by the scruff of her neck. She carried her that way, as they struggled through the cold, biting wind and drifting snow.

     Hanging from her friend’s mouth, Bunny watched as her leg bandage came undone. Then, it went flying off in the wind. She saw it bounce into a drift or two. Then, it disappeared in the dizzying whiteness of snow, which blew like a hurricane around them.

     “Fawn! Your bandage just came off!”

     “There’s nothing much I can do about that!” answered Fawn, doing her best not to drop Bunny as she called out. “Right now…a bandage coming off is the least of my worries!”

     A voice in Fawn’s head seemed to be shouting at her, taunting her, “Is this enough excitement for you?! Do you still not care how dangerous it is?”

     Fawn wanted to argue back, “But I’m just a kid! I was bored! Sometimes kids say stupid things! Sometimes kids say things they don’t mean!”

     But at that moment, Fawn understood words once said, cannot be unsaid. She tried her best to shut out the voice. She had enough trouble at the moment.

     “I—I—I’m freezing!” Bunny cried. “I’m s-s-sorry Fawn!!”

     “Why? What for?” Fawn mumbled as she tried to hold onto Bunny.

     “It was my idea to go out looking for clues! I made you break your promise. Now…we’re probably going to die in this blizzard.”

     Bunny almost slipped from her grasp, as Fawn scolded her, “Stop that! Don’t talk like that! Don’t even think like that! Everything is going to be fine! Just remember…together…until the last snowflake faaallll—”

     Suddenly, with Bunny still clenched in her teeth, Fawn was tumbling down a steep slope. Head over hooves she rolled and rolled. She never lost her grip on her little friend until they came to an abrupt stop at the bottom of the hill. Bunny flew from her mouth, up into the snowy air.

     “Aahh!” Fawn cried out in fear. “Bunny!”

     She was lying in the snow, unable to move, and then suddenly Fawn felt something land on her belly. It was Bunny! But, she wasn’t moving! She just lay there…silent and motionless.

     “Bunny! Bunny? Are you alright? Speak to me! Bunny!!”

     She was too weak to raise herself to check on her friend. The sound of her voice was lost in the roaring winds. Tears rolled down her cheeks, as she looked at Bunny lying helplessly on her belly.

     “Oh…Bunny!” she murmured through her tears.

     Then, she saw shadows approaching. She could hear voices…but couldn’t make out who they were.

     Foddle? Snowman?

     But, she couldn’t see…and she couldn’t stay awake any longer.

About the Books

The Adventures of Fawn Book 1: ‘Til the Last Snowflake Falls

book-1-book-coverThe Adventures of Fawn is a ‘coming of age’ series set in the magical world of Santa’s North Pole! The year is 1849, and legendary reindeer Comet and Vixen have a young daughter, Fawn. In this first book, ‘Til the Last Snowflake Falls’ the young reindeer spends far too many days alone in the stable at Santa’s Village with no friends and nothing to do. While her parents caution her she’s much too young and inexperienced to go exploring outside Santa’s Village by herself, Fawn disagrees. Declaring, “I want some fun and excitement! I don’t care how dangerous it is!” she begins sneaking out each day in search of friends, excitement and adventure. She’ll find them all…but also find herself facing dangers like a fierce hungry wolf, a freezing North Pole blizzard, and the treachery of a sea captain capturing animals of the arctic to sell to a zoo in New York City. Along the way, she’ll also learn some valuable lessons about what’s really important in life. The Adventures of Fawn are filled with fun and excitement for all ages!

The Adventures of Fawn Book 2: The Ona Pendulum

book-2-book-coverThe Adventures of Fawn continue as an evil former elf Princess is trying to destroy The Ona Pendulum…a device that enables Santa, Wajic, his elves and reindeer to live for hundreds of years. So Fawn and her friends are off to the rescue to save Santa and company…Christmas 1849….and every other future Christmas, as well! In the process they’ll learn how a young toymaker named Kristoff Kringle became Santa Claus, how he met the elves, and where his famous, “Ho-Ho-Ho” comes from. They’ll also learn about the Rua Ondos…wonderful, magical shooting stars which fell to Earth on the very first Christmas. The Ona Pendulum is an adventure the whole family will enjoy!!

The Adventures of Fawn Book 3: Far and Yet So Near

far-and-yet-so-near-coverThe Adventures of Fawn continue as the young reindeer, Bunny, Doctor Weather and friends trail Santa’s reindeer after they come under the control of a mysterious stranger, and suddenly, mindlessly march off together. “Far And Yet So Near” sees the group led to an underground cavern where they learn the mystery man intends to steal the team of reindeer. Santa and Wajic turn up in the nick of time…and it looks like everyone is rescued. But the stranger has a few tricks up his sleeve, and explosions unexpectedly rock the cavern as he makes good his escape. But not before he ‘reindeer-naps’ Fawn. She soon finds herself a pet in an English manor house near London. Will Fawn ever return to the North Pole? Will anyone ever be able to find her? Did Santa, Wajic, Doctor Weather and the reindeer perish in the explosions? Read “Far And Yet So Near” to find out!

 

Author Bio

 al-e-boy-photo   Through almost 40 years as a Santa Claus, Al E. Boy developed quite a repertoire of tales to explain and answer the many questions children ask about Santa, the North Pole, his reindeer, and his friends, the elves.

     It was this collection of tales which prompted him to begin writing The Adventures of Fawn. Through the young daughter of legendary reindeer Comet and Vixen, he’s been able to weave an exciting, colorful, imaginative world which will delight readers of all ages!

     Mr. Boy not only hopes you enjoy these tales, but make reading them part of your Christmas traditions, as well.

Links

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Book 1: Amazon

Book 2: Amazon

Book 3: Amazon

Website: http://aleboysnowflake.wix.com/fawn

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Book Excerpt Monsterland

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Book Excerpt

“What’s up with you, Howard Drucker? I thought you wanted to go.” Wyatt turned, looking at his friend’s pinched face.

“Yeah, that was before, this is now.”

Melvin hooked his arm around the headrest. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

Howard shrugged indifferently.

“Come on,” Melvin said impatiently.“In theory it sounded like a great idea. You know, seeing vampires, zombies, and werewolves in their natural habitat.”

“So?”

“The point is, this,” he gestured to the massive gates now in eyesight. “It seems unnatural. It feels—”

“What? Wrong? What else are they going to do with them? Kill them like in an old Boris Karloff movie? This is so right,” Melvin said hotly. “They were dying in those detention camps.”

“Containment camps,” Howard corrected.

“Whatever.” Melvin went on. “The hillbillies practically wiped out the werewolf colony once it was discovered. Vampires lived in fear, almost harried out of existence. Here they are protected. If they did that to the rhinos, maybe they wouldn’t have become extinct.”

“It’s sterile, not real!” Howard was leaning over the front seat.

“What happened to you? You were so excited about it,” Wyatt asked.

“This was all over YouTube this morning.” He typed something on his phone and then showed them the screen. It looked like a dilapidated portion of any American city. The image was filmed in a choppy fashion, bouncing around, going in and out of focus. The Werewolf River Run sign was in the viewfinder. Uniformed men, some with lab coats, entered the ride area. The camera panned out to view an artificial river with alligators rhythmically rising and falling in the choppy water. There was a rustle and then shouts. A howl turned into a wail, and all four boys watched, their collective breaths held.

About the Book

monsterlandTitle: Monsterland

Author: Michael Phillip Cash

Genre: Horror / Action

Welcome to Monsterland – the scariest place on Earth. All guests can interact with real vampires in Vampire Village, be chased by an actual werewolf on the River Run, and walk among the dead in Zombieville. Wyatt Baldwin, a high school student and life-long movie buff is staring bleakly at a future of flipping burgers. Due to a fortuitous circumstance, Wyatt and his friends are invited to the star-studded opening of Monsterland. In a theme park full of real vampires, werewolves and zombies, what could possibly go wrong?

Author Bio

MPC_Photo_bethpageMichael Phillip Cash is an award-winning and best-selling novelist of horror, paranormal, and science fiction novels.  He’s written ten books including the best-selling “Brood X”, “Stillwell”, “The Flip”, “The After House”, “The Hanging Tree”, “Witches Protection Program”, “Pokergeist”, “Monsterland”, “The History Major”, and “Battle for Darracia” series. Michael’s books are on the Amazon best-seller list and have also won numerous awards. Additionally, he is a screenwriter with 14 specs under his belt. Michael resides on the North Shore of Long Island.

Links

Amazon Direct Link: https://amzn.com/1517180678

Website:  http://www.michaelphillipcash.com/

Blog:  http://www.michaelphillipcash-officialblog.com/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/MichaelPhillipCash

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/michaelpcash

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Guest Post Dragon Called

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Please welcome Melissa Christopherson today, author of DRAGON CALLED, a fantasy novel, who will talk about her editing process.

Guest Post

Hello!

My name is Melissa Christopherson, and I’m the author of Dragon Called, book one of the Remnants of the Past Saga.  I’m excited to get to have the chance to have a guest post on Editor Charlene’s blog!  What I’m here to talk to you about today is my editing process.

A lot of you know that ever author’s process is different, and I’m as guilty of that as anyone else.  Once I have the rough draft of my book completed – a process which generally takes around a month of dedicated writing time – I actually don’t get started on changing things right away.  I take a few days break, so when I come back to the project I’m working on, I have fresh eyes and a fresh mind.  At that point I’ve also had time to think about what I forgot to include, or come up with new things I want to put in!

Which is a good thing…because after that first step of taking a break, my next step is to actually go through and rewrite the entire book.  For me, this typically means that I go through the book, and get rid at least half of what I had written before.  Since I’m someone who doesn’t touch anything in the rough draft until it’s complete, sometimes it’s a bit more than half.  Everything that stays gets reorganized, so I can maximize that scene’s impact as best as I can.  And then for everything I got rid of, I write something new to replace it.  I can’t have half of a book, after all!

Once the rewrite is complete, and I have everything as good as I can make it, I send it off to a couple of people I trust really well.  I know if there are any big flaws or problems with my book that they’ll call me right away so I can address it, even though it means I’ll have to resend it to them.  Sometimes this means they call me about the same thing – other times they catch things the other missed.  That’s why it’s important to have two of them, at least!

After they’ve finally given the book back to me, I make any changes that are needed, and hand the book off to my family grammar nuts.  A lot of people hesitate to give their books to family, because they’re worried they’ll go easy on them – I don’t have that fear.  I know if I’ve made a lot of mistakes, they’ll tear it to pieces…and sometimes that’s what it needs!

When the book has made it through the grammar checks, the editing is done.  All that’s left to do is format it, and get in touch with my cover artist!

Thanks again for having me!  I hope this insight into my personal editing process is beneficial to help you on your own journey – or even just an author you know, too.

Book Excerpt

“We are the Heart of the Leviathan.  The ones who are in charge of the others, and who, in the end, decide the true fate of things.” It was clearly Vicenta who had spoken, as it was coming from the person with the diamond mask.

“You are indeed guilty of the crime of soul merging, but…” The sapphire masked one said, as the five of them seemed to be exchanging looks.  “The circumstances are as you explained them to be.”

It was the one in the emerald mask who spoke this time.  “Because the circumstances are as they are, and more complicated than you or we understood..  We offer you a choice, instead of punishment.”

“A choice?” Liliana asked quietly, glancing between them as best she could.  “What do you mean?”

“You may either become dragonkind fully, or you must surrender any and all ties to magic, be they transmitted through blood or by matter of Chara’s soul having merged with yours.” The man in the amethyst mask answered.  “But be warned, if you become wholly a Mystical, you shall become a citizen of Levac.”

Become one of them, or lose any and all ties to magic?

About the Book

dragoncalledfrontTitle: Dragon Called

Author: Melissa Christopherson

Genre: Fantasy

Liliana’s life is perfectly normal. A young woman who has grown up in the kingdom of Kalvia, she knows all too well the importance of secrets. As a member of nobility, she is even expected to have a few of her own!

When her parents take her to a ball, Liliana expects her life to go on as normal after it’s conclusion. Instead, she finds herself swept into a betrothal with a man whom all of the whisperers say is crazy.

As the evidence builds up, Liliana must make the choice to stay in a nation where secrets are the currency…or step out of her human-ruled kingdom into a world so much bigger than she ever imagined.

 

Author Bio

melissaMelissa Christopherson is an avid reader, passionate writer, and lover of everything literary. She serves as an AmeriCorps Service Member in the Iowa Reading Corps and is proud to help kids enhance their literary abilities. She served two years as a Municipal Liaison for NaNoWriMo in the Iowa area to help other authors grow in both ability and confidence.

She was born in Mason City, Iowa, and has spent most of her life reading books and spent most of her younger years daydreaming.  While in high school, she participated in Academic Decathlon for four years, and credits the reading assignments for the club for further expanding her literary horizons.  She is currently pursuing a degree in English, with a client-centered distributive minor.

Links

Website: http://www.melissachristopherson.com/

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