My goal for 2014 is to encourage more reviews of my work on Amazon.com.
Email theaexcerpts at gmail dot com with a link to your Water Witch review on amazon.com and get entered to win a paperback set of the full set of witches of etlantium. 4 books. When I get 100 honest reviews, I’ll draw a winner.
I’ll post the winner (assuming I get to 100….I think I can, I think I can) right here on the blog and on Facebook, linkedin, and twitter. Oh, and announce it on my newsletter too.
If you’ve read it, consider reviewing it. If you’ve already reviewed it, go on and send me that email. If you haven’t read it? whatcha waiting for?
I’ve been off my schedule for months now. (RIP big brother) I did promise to attempt to become more regular on my blog, so since it’s January, here tis. My first of the year installment.
I write to keep my sanity at times, and at times….well, to lose it. You know how it is. So to ease in to the new year of blogging, I thought I’d offer other writers a lil something to help spread their words.
I’ll post a short sample of my new WIP, and you can post a short sample of yours in the comments with a link to your own blog so we can visit, comment, or see more writing.
Short and sweet now, cause they won’t fit in the comments otherwise. wink.
I’m writing a new novella: Sons of Alkaia. It’s an installment in the Water Witch series and picks up after Theron’s Taless, but before Water Witch. I’m having fun with it.
Remember: this is first raw vulnerable draft, my pretties.
Sons of Alkaia
The wolves smelled the milk and womb blood on her–and they came. Alkaia heard them snuffling at the perimeter of the darkness where the firelight couldn’t reach. It had taken her far too long to tinder that pitiful flame that separated her from the night and she’d protected it like she’d protected nothing in her life before.
Except for the man, she reminded herself, and then quickly threw ash on the light of that memory. Truth was, she was here now. Exiled from her people and her land. Alone in the night with a paltry flame. No. Not alone. The babe mewled from the spot where she’d left it, close enough to the fire that the predators wouldn’t dare make for it, and far enough away that the sparks wouldn’t land and catch his swaddling fur afire.
She supposed the wolves heard its piteous cry as well. More reason to come stalking a warrior in the night when they thought her vulnerable. Alkaia considered leaving the squalling thing where it lay, taking a stick with a good burning end off into the darkness and making camp elsewhere. Leave the wretched child to the wolves. But the bare truth of it was there were too many beasts in the pine forest to be sated by a newborn male. They’d come for her afterwards, their appetites piqued by the flavor of tender meat and newborn milk.
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It’s unusual for me to have 2 guests in one week. I apologize if my posts are clogging up your email; it doesn’t happen often, but I wanted to share a new book launch with you.
Can Thrilling Reads contain great characters?
I’m a lover of many genres—so long as the characters speak to me. I’ve been known to read YA, chicklit, and fantasy besides horror and scifi because I got engaged in what the characters were saying to me. The same goes for thrillers. I need to BELIEVE the characters. I need to SYMPATHIZE with the characters: and that goes for the villain too. I great thriller writer has to make all the players authentic for me. I loved the Millennium series by Stieg Larson for that reason: all the characters were very much fleshed out and plump. The villains were not pure evil. I often pitied them or I found something within that made me think the portrayal was realistic: that the villain could acutally be a person. If I see a cardboard character, I put the book down.
Today, Faith Mortimer announces her new thriller and it occurs to me that I really must go investigate her character portrayals.
I encourage you to do the same.
Diana Rivers and “The Surgeon’s Blade”
Mystery-suspense-thriller writer, Faith Mortimer is delighted to add book three to her best-selling Diana Rivers mystery thriller series. This latest novel, “The Surgeon’s blade” is more chilling, tense and is described as a ‘real corker of a read’.
When nursing sister, Libby Hunter wakes up in hospital following a traumatic sailing accident she discovers two deeply disturbing things. One – she has lost her memory and two – the stranger, (Nigel) whom she finds sitting by her bedside when she awakes claims to be her fiancé.
During her hospital stay, Libby regains most of her memory, except the bizarre thing is she cannot remember ever being engaged to surgeon, Nigel. Against her will Nigel persuades Libby into agreeing to move in with him. Working on instinct she finds excuses to put him off until she is completely sure of her true feelings.
During a series of attacks on nurses in London and Southampton, Libby finds herself in great danger when her home is broken into one night. Who is the intruder and does he plan on harming her? And is this connected in any way to the recent attacks on nursing staff. Will Libby be the attacker’s latest targeted victim?
Distressed Libby turns to pilot, Robert for help and understanding, but is he as respectable and kind as he appears to be? Is her fiancé, Nigel trustworthy, especially when his ex-wife, Stella enters the scene and Libby suspects them of rekindling their relationship?
The night time intrusion to Libby’s house sets in motion a downwards spiral of cataclysmic and terrifying events, culminating in our favourite sleuth, Diana Rivers stepping in to help solve the case in this chilling mystery thriller.
If you follow my blog (and please do, there’s something in it for ya), then you’ll know I’m a writer. But you know, my labels don’t stop there. I’m always amazed when I’m asked to decide whether I’m a writer or a reader on places like Goodreads or on the Amazon forums or the Kindleboards forum. Why can’t I be a reader? I AM a reader. I’ve been reading far longer than I’ve been writing. I read voraciously at times, and at times, the most I read is my shampoo bottle.
Right now I’m glutting myself on brain candy because my daily mind is occupied by serious thoughts and I need to distract myself. I will admit (and please don’t judge me) to being completely enthralled by the True Blood series of books. It’s not great writing if you’re looking for literature, but it’s a great story for my poor jonesing brain.
It’s not always that way though. I love all kinds of fiction and nonfiction. I have favorite authors like many readers, but since I purchased a Kindle reader, I have a different set of books than normal. I recently looked at my TBR and noticed something in common for the stack of bits and bytes that resided there. None of the books are by traditional authors. They’re indie.
What is indie?
Some might say: unedited, trash, not good enough to get a real publisher.
Why, dear reader, indie can be, and often is, quite the opposite.
Indie is unleashed. It’s nonconformist. It’s genre bending and genre crossing and it’s as exciting as going to a rock concert without a barrier keeping the fans from the band.
Many indies take their craft seriously. We’re writers, after all, and we hone our craft like any writer (let’s say: Alice Munro). The difference is that some writers have found fortune in the traditional sense: someone found them in a stack of papers and pulled them out and said, “Hey, this just might sell.”
An indie may have been the MS right underneath that one.
I’ve found some real gems in the indie world and all for really great prices. I’d highly recommend any of the below:
I really could go on and on because I’ve been reading indies for a whole year, but I think I’d rather let you chime in. Please list an indie that you read and loved this year and leave a title so we can go look them up.
Squirrel Army Forward, March!
Folks: My newest woo nugget is available for free RIGHT NOW on Smashwords with coupon code: ZQ49V available from Feedbooks. It’s a short story collection that I believe will appeal to the women’s fiction reader who isn’t afraid of a little shadow in her light read.
Please, if you’ve wondered whether or not the ‘Thea nut’ has any flavor at all, go pick up a copy and read a few stories.
And if you want to be part of the Thea army of squirrels, please pass this blog post around, share it on Facebook, link to it on your own blogs, Stumble or Reddit, or whatever you do. I’ll take anything.
A great twitter friend is on a blog tour and I offered her my spot for today. I do hope you decide to follow her (she’s @patricialynne07). She gave Anomaly a really great review–said it was her first. I felt pretty chuffed that she liked my lil book enough to draft her first book review.
I asked her to write a post on horoscopes and characters as one of my readers (a great writer too) mentioned that she thought J (the main character in Anomaly) was a gemini because of the duality in his nature. I hadn’t thought about it before and thus this post.
Horoscopes and Characters
It’s always fun, when creating characters to go the extra mile. It makes them more realistic when they have favorite colors, movies, music. Or birthdays. Some authors just know when what day their character was born. The knowledge is just there along with how they look, height, weight and personality. Me, I hadn’t really thought about when Tommy or Danny were born. I only knew their births were far enough apart that the dates were different. So when Thea suggest horoscopes for her stop on the tour I had to think.
When were Tommy and Danny born?
I knew I couldn’t pick any date. I’m a firm believer that astrological signs sync up with how a person is. I’m a Scorpio and when reading a Scorpio profile, the mark is pretty dead on. It would be the same for Tommy and Danny. So I went looking and discovered Tommy is so a Taurus and Danny is an Aries.
I will admit, this was the selling point for deciding Tommy is a Taurus.
The throat and neck are the hot spots for any Taurus. Lightly rub the neck, kiss it gently, lick it lightly, even a soft nipple will make them melt like butter! Massage the back of the neck while you are relaxing, this relax them and set the mood for passion!
Yeah, I think you can see why too. And if not, hello! He’s a vampire! There’s more than just that too. These are just the key ones that stand out to me.
Taurus is the one who has immense perseverance, even when others have given up, the Taurus rages on. – Tommy’s need/instinct to survive
Taurus are not fond of change. They like the familiar and routine comfort of life. In fact, is change is imminent, they get very nervous and worried. They do not like anything new because anything new is unknown and Taurus fears the unknown. – How many times did I have him wining about change?
Taurus are down to earth, they do not like gaudy, flashy or over the top things. – Remember his cellar? Bare.
He fits other characteristics, but not as to a T. The one characteristic I think he doesn’t fit is laziness. They can be very lazy when someone gives them orders or wants them to do something they do not want to do. They are not lazy when it comes to themselves. That isn’t true for Tommy. You want him to do something, order him with his name. But I don’t think every person fits their astrological sign to a T. There are traits for Scorpio that don’t fit to well with me.
As for Danny, I decided he shouldn’t be a Taurus so that is how he ended up an Aries. It’s not a bad fit though.
Aries is the first of the zodiac signs. Aries is the sign of the self, people born under this sign strongly project their personalities onto others and can be very self-oriented. Aries tend to venture out into the world and leave impressions on others that they are exciting, vibrant and talkative. Aries tend to live adventurous lives and like to be the center of attention, but rightly so since they are natural, confident leaders. Aries are enthusiastic about their goals and enjoy the thrill of the hunt, “wanting is always better than getting” is a good way to sum it up. Aries are very impulsive and usually do not think before they act – or speak. Too often Aries will say whatever pops into their head and usually end up regretting it later!
Although, Danny is present throughout the whole story, there’s not a lot of delving into his life. But reading that I can see a lot of Danny in it. I think the last sentence is the most accurate for Danny. Especially when he’s drunk. And between him and Tommy – when Tommy was human – Danny was the one that attracted people. He made the friends and left a lasting impression on others.
So there is Tommy and Danny’s birthday April 20th and 19th. Thanks Thea for being a stop on my blog tour. It means a lot given how much I enjoy your writing.
My Grandmother was a war bride. I never really understood what that meant as a kid. I assumed it meant she’d left her country to marry a man she’d met during the war. And it does. It does mean that. But I’ve realized over the years that it means so much more.
I learned during my early school days that the province I call home: Nova Scotia means New Scotland. Because of the heritage of this long strip of land surrounded on three sides by Atlantic ocean, it’s named for my grandmother’s home. I imagine that despite her love for her new beau, it must have given her some pause, some sense of comfort and security, that she’d be moving to a place that would seem like her own home. The name must have taken some of the fear away.
She’d seen hardship in Glasgow. I know this. I imagine the hardships she faced were even more daunting here if only because the support system we all take for granted was gone. She had no family to run to when she and her new husband fought. She had no mother to coddle her when she nursed her first born and struggled with trying to figure out what it meant to be a mother, how to make formula, change diapers, calm the squalling in the middle of the night. She had no friends to relieve the stressful hours with chitchat over a hot cup of tea.
And she had no one to turn to when she and this new husband realized they’d made a mistake.
I think she went home once, packed up my mother and rode the waves back to Scotland. I wonder what they thought of her back there: was she a failure, were they excited to see her? She had brothers who I don’t doubt would have torn my grandfather limb from limb if they’d been able to get hold of him. (what brother wouldn’t feel such fierce protectiveness over a hurt sister? See: my blog post about my own brothers)
But she returned to Nova Scotia and she stayed here. My mom tells me stories of her walking home from work in the winter. They had no car and ‘work’ was 10 kms away, in the town. I think of the 10km drive from my house to my work and it takes 15 minutes. What must it have been like to walk to work everyday, work, and then walk home. So you can feed a family, put clothes on your three girls’ backs?
I only know that in the story, my grandmother’s nylons are torn and holey in places. Her shoes are soaked. She’s wet and cold from the snow. I take snow in the winter for granted. I just assume the snowfall is going to be a foot high with temperatures below freezing and a wind chill that gains fierceness from the Atlantic air. In Scotland, the average precipitation is 9cm in January. The average low temperature is 1degree.
In the story, my grandmother doesn’t complain. Just hangs her threadbare coat behind the stove and asks for a good hot cup of tea.
That hardy Scots will, I suppose, as hard as the brogue that never left her despite living in an area where English and Acadian French mix to form an odd sort of accent that most folks in my area call Fringlish. How she must have stood out in that.
What kept her here, I don’t know, but I imagine it had to do with family. Her new family. Those three girls married and had kids of their own. Her grandchildren–my brother and I especially–practically lived there. We ate pizza late at night in her bed and watched The Rockford Files. She made me Koolaid and told me tales of Nessie and Robbie Burns.
Is it any wonder I’ve remained fascinated with Scotland?
If you liked this post, I would muchly appreciate a tweet or share. In fact, I’d be so happy to have a tweet that if you make sure to include the hashtag #theagimmesome, I’ll enter you into a weekly draw to win an ebook. This week: Throwing Clay Shadows. It’s my new release, and is set in Scotland on the Isle of Eigg in the 1800s mostly because my family originated there.
If you’re not sure what to tweet, I even have one drafted for you:
what is your heritage? read blog post and tweet for entry to win an ebook by @theaatkinson. #theagimmesome http://bit.ly/pm3iEU
The new release Throwing Clay Shadows will be on sale for its first month for 99cents. Please do at least sample or better yet, click on through from the picture to pick it up . It costs less than a Timmie’s coffee.
I wanted to run away because my best friend had decided to. I remember thinking how brave that decision was and I envied her, her courage. In fact, I remember envying a lot of things about her: she got awesome bendable leg Barbie dolls for Christmas while mine were plastic, hard edged ones that spread-eagled when I tried to sit them down. She had a minibike–my dad couldn’t afford to buy me a pedal bike. She had a big fisherman father’s shed to play in with coils of rope as high as you stood.
You don’t need to tell me now that I envied her for all the wrong reasons–especially in light of the fact that my home was such an amazing place for a child to grow up that I bring my daughter there every week just to connect with all of her cousins and aunts and uncles. We’re close, my family. But I digress.
I envied this friend also because even at our tender ages she was a great writer. She even won a radio contest with her essay. She had something, some spark that just made her writing electric.
Still, with all that stuff in her favour, she wanted to run away. The best I could do as her BFF (a term not used back in the day) was to help her.
We spent weeks (probably days, actually) sweeping off some old linoleum covered floor that was the only remnant of a shed on the back of her father’s property. We dug up fern roots that we’d learned were edible in science class if you peeled all the black stuff off. They tasted like popcorn or nuts when we tried them out, and we stored them in baggies to keep them clean when we stuffed them under the floorboards.
With everything ready, she declared the date: our mutual birthday. Mid summer. She should be able to have good weather till she got where she was going.
The last bit was a bit fuzzy. All she knew was she was going to sleep at the old floor overnight and take off in the morning and head out–somewhere.
I was afraid for her, but if anyone could do it, she could. I wasn’t sure why she wanted to leave–heck, it could be just the spirit of adventure–but I knew right then she would make it.
Come supper time of my birthday I hadn’t heard a word from her all day. I blew out my birthday cake candles and spared a thought for the slice I would have liked to offer her, but she was miles away by then. Gone.
I sat on my front step and stared at her house. I was poised to expect the phone to ring, for her mom to demand I tell her where she was, and I agonized over what I would say. I couldn’t tell the truth; I’d promised to keep the secret.
It was lonely sitting there. I remember that. That was the first time I realized I was never going to see her again. The first time I realized that I would never want to be away from my own family that way. Despite 3 boys that picked on me, they would also do worse to anyone else who dared do the same. My mom and dad gave me as many hugs and kisses as they could fit in a day.
I didn’t have things, but I had family.
And that was the most important thing.
I ached for her that she was leaving hers behind.
All this I mulled over as I stared across the road at her yellow house, the VHF aerial tower in her dad’s backyard, the paved driveway.
Then I saw her.
She was ambling down that drive and across the road, not looking up, not saying anything, just moving up to my spot on the step, sitting down next to me.
“What happened?” I asked, both terrified she’d gotten caught and thrilled to see her.
She shrugged. “Nothing.”
“Oh,” I said, not sure what else to say.
“The popcorn rotted.”
She said it by way of explanation, but there was something else trilling beneath the admission, something that had us both sitting silent.
We both sat there saying nothing after that, just stared out at her backyard where we’d had so much fun. Both of us thinking, no doubt, about all the things that as children we were beginning to realize: that family has a connection to us that runs deep into our cores.
And that there’s really no place like home .
If you liked this post, please do click one of the share buttons below and/or find the follow me button for twitter. Even better: sample one of my novels for your Kindle, Nook, Kobo, or phone app
Olivia has her own secrets that both make her run away and pull her back home. Find out what they are in Secret Language of Crows. Still not sure if you’ll like it? Baxter Claire wrote a review for it on her blog.
Plus: I have a short story on Smashwords or Feedbooks that is always free. If you’re unsure whether you’ll like my writing, I encourage you to sample “Crows” from the purchase site, or just pick up God in the Machine from:
I grew up in a house with 3 brothers: one who put snakes in my boots; one who stole the money from my piggybanks: all of them, even the one I hid behind my closet door; and one who continually tried to peel my fingernails from the nailbeds.
I love each one of them, and all for those same reasons mentioned.
My brothers, like many brothers the world over, tormented the living daylights out of me, their only sister. They made me play goalie in the winter so often I never learned to skate. They forced me to run bases when I didn’t want to by firing an orange hockey ball at me until I darted around at their bidding afraid of the sting those balls delivered. Those brothers of mine threw ski poles at me, hit me over the head with a glass liquor bottle ala cartoon barfights, they Indian burned my arms absolutely raw.
And they would absolutely all die for me, each one–or at the very least beat the snot out of a bully.
So when one of them began to suffer the torments of addiction and relapse, it was inevitable that it would affect me to my core. We in the family all held our collective breaths, working at loving the person and not the behaviour. We went through all of the sickness of enabling and co-dependency and all those other terribly guilt-ridden symptoms of being the healthy family members of a very sick person.
It was this particular brother who I’ve seen give away his last bit of money to someone who needed it. I’ve seen him sit with my months’ old daughter for hours trying to calm her during a colick spell. He tells a joke like noboby’s business and if you’re perched awkwardly at at party with no one to talk to, he is the one who will spend his time with you and pull you into the crowd.
He genuinely likes people: a strange thing in my family of introverts. I think people get this about him and they respond. He has never lost that, even when he was struggling with the worst of his crisis.
It wasn’t until he started coming through the tunnel that I was able to breathe again–and breathing for me meant writing.
Secret language of Crows doesn’t sell well–it’s my fault, really. It’s so close to my heart that I don’t market it much–if at all. It doesn’t detail my brother or my family’s crisis, (That would be highly disrespectful of the people I hold most dear) but it does explore my own sense of helplessness and guilt in ways that you can only do in fiction.
Metaphorically, it lets me beat myself up and come out clean on the other end.
There’s a lot of symbolism in there that may only mean something to me, as it’s an intensely personal novel, but I think you may just find your own intimacy in there. You might transpose your own personal truth–isn’t that what symbolism does, after all?
You see, in my own way, I died for this brother–or rather, I took on the bully for him.
And I’m quite satisfied for both our sakes that it’s not coming back.
If you liked this post, please do share.
Thea is the author of several novels that she considers left of mainstream. You can find her on Smashwords, BN, Kobo, Sony, Apple
If you’re interested in seeing the final evolution of a journey to forgiveness, you can click over to any of the places it’s for sale: The two biggest are:
Katie Salidas explores her success in Self Publishing
Self-Publishing wasn’t an easy decision, that’s for sure. Like all new writers, I originally envisioned J.K. Rowling-like fame. I was going to write a series that would have readers clamoring for more. The reality is so much farther from the truth but it’s those initial fantasies that had me chomping at the bit to get my debut novel, Immortalis Carpe Noctem out into the world.
I started, as many new writers do, sending out queries way too early. We’re all blind to our faults and I certainly was (and still am) no exception. After some initial harsh rejection, I decided to turn to critiquing groups for help. Six months later after a few more rounds of revisions (and research into the publishing world), I was ready to go at it again, this time with a more realistic approach. I learned that my initial dream of millions and millions of dollars and people lining up for miles to attend my book signings, was much more the exception than the rule.
Still, the reception was lukewarm at best. I would hear compliments about the story and characters, but still be told, no. A common theme in the query responses I got was that the market was already too flooded with vampire stories. They’d love to publish me (or take me on as a client) but there are just too many vampire books out there.
My research told me too, that even if I had gotten a publishing contract, my book wouldn’t see store shelves until 2 years later. Vampires may be hot now, but what if they have cooled by then?
That last bit was what spurred me on to self-publish. I didn’t want my story missing the opportunity to hit the market while it was still hot. I had spent a total of five years working on Immortals, from the time I penned the first word, until the final draft. There was no way I was going to let it collect dust. It was (and still is) my baby.
So I turned my research to indie publishing and spent months learning all I could about ebook formatting and ways to get my work into print. Let me tell you, there’s a lot to learn there. It took me another four months to finally pull the trigger and publish Immortalis Carpe Noctem. Since then I have released many more titles, like the newest one available today: Pandora’s Box.
Am I making millions off of my books? No. Self-publishing is not the gateway to fame and fortune. (Most artists are starving, right?). Sure it would be nice to get rich from my work, but that’s not the goal. Writing is my passion, and eventually, sure I’d like to pay the bills with it, but for now it’s a slow build. I’m finding new readers every day. The best part, for me, is seeing others enjoy my work. I cherish every fan email I get and every comment on my blog.
You, the reader, make me happy in the choice I made to self-publish.
Thanks for reading, and if you want to check out my work, you can find me at
Becoming a vampire is easy. Living with the condition… that’s the hard part.
Bleeding to death after brutal mugging, twenty-five year old Alyssa is rescued by the most unlikely hero: the handsome and aloof vampire, Lysander.
His gift of immortal blood initiates Alyssa into a frightening, eternally dark world filled with: bloodlust, religious fanaticism, and thousand-year old vendettas.
With Lysander as her guide, Alyssa will have to learn what it takes to survive in the immortal world. She’ll have to find the strength to accept her new reality and carpe noctem; or give in, and submit to final death.
Hunters & Prey (Book 2)
Becoming a vampire saved Alyssa from death, but the price was high: the loss of everything and everyone attached to her mortal life. She’s still learning to cope when a surprise confrontation with Santino Vitale, the Acta Sanctorum’s most fearsome hunter, sends her fleeing back to the world she once knew, and Fallon, the friend she’s missed more than anything.
Alyssa breaks vampire law by revealing her new, true self to her old friend, a fact which causes strong division in the group that should support her most: her clan.
Pandora’s Box (Book 3)
After a few months as a vampire, Alyssa thought she’d learned all she needed to know about the supernatural world. But her confidence is shattered by the delivery of a mysterious package – a Pandora’s Box.
Seemingly innocuous, the box is in reality an ancient prison, generated by a magic more powerful than anyone in her clan has ever known. But what manner of evil could need such force to contain it?
When the box is opened, the sinister creature within is released, and only supernatural blood will satiate its thirst. The clan soon learns how it feels when the hunter becomes the hunted.
Apparently powerless against the ancient evil, the clan flees Las Vegas for Boston, with only a slim hope for salvation. Could Lysander’s old journals hold the key? And what if they don’t?
And how welcome will they be in a city run by a whole different kind of supernatural being?
To purchase the Immortalis books (In print and ebook):
I was happy to accept when Thea asked me if I’d like to do a guest post for her, but when it came to topics I found myself drawing a complete blank. (Which has been a theme lately, actually.)
Thea had just mentioned how much she liked my review of Trevor Munson’s Angel of Vengeance, so she suggested I do a post about reviewing. Now, lest you think I’m about to throw my two cents into the “should writers review” debate, that’s not how I roll. If I’ve learned anything in fifteen years on the internet, it’s that the same arguments get recycled over and over and over, and I’m not interested in that. I do what I do, and everyone else can do what they do, forever and ever amen.
Since writing is not my career, I’m not under pressure to build a brand, which leaves me free to do things my own way. On the other hand, I have pretty long gaps between completed stories, and I’d prefer to have something to say in those gaps other than “still not done”.
One cannot blog on memes alone. I’ve been reviewing for the Historical Novel Society for several years now and keeping a more casual reading record at Goodreads, so I thought maybe I’d try doing a few reviews in my LJ.
Imagine my surprise when I was offered my first ARC. I was like, “Me? Seriously? Have you read this LJ?” It’s an excellent feeling to be trusted with someone else’s work, and it helps me bring more content to my readers. These days I enjoy a nice middle ground: I get to review lots of great books for the HNS; I blog when I can and do reviews when the opportunity arises; and I keep it light and casual with my friends on Goodreads. I post to my LJ when I have something to say and putz around on Twitter and Tumblr when I don’t. And it goes without saying that writing and reading always come first. Everything else is gravy.
Reviewing is simple for me. If a review has been requested – either by the author or as part of my commitment to the HNS – I do my best to compose an intelligent, concise, and professional summary emphasizing which audience might enjoy the book. When I review something spontaneously (like I did with the Munson novel), I write the way I talk, squee and snark and all, with all the internet grammar and fannish references I would use in any other post. Either way, though, I’m not into trashing books – I’ll point out crucial issues and/or technical flaws, but the vast majority of criticism is based on personal opinion, and I’m not down with presenting my opinion as fact. I just want to tell my friends about the books I read. My motto for reviewing is my motto for everything else I do online: relaxed and groovy. (The wisdom of Eddie Izzard – useful in so many situations.)
So I don’t consider myself a Serious Internet Book Reviewer any more than I consider myself a Serious Internet Blogger (or for that matter, a Serious Internet Indie Author). I’m just a nerd who loves books – reading them, writing them, collecting them, sharing them, geeking out over them, evolving with them. I like how books make me feel. If I’ve made one other person out there feel that way, then I’ve met my only goal as a writer. I feel really lucky to be made for the creative life, and I plan to continue living that life in my own way. I wish the same for all my peeps out there who are walking this weird and wonderful path with me. Nerd life rules.
Heather Domin is the author of The Soldier of Raetia, along with a bunch of other lurking in shady corners of the internet and gathering dust in a bookshelf full of 70-page Mead notebooks. The nerdy blog mentioned in this post is her Livejournal. She’s also on Twitter, where she doesn’t say anything interesting but at least she doesn’t spam you.
BTW from Thea: Heather is one of those great folks you yearn to meet on twitter. We’ve had many a good chat and I always look for her cute avatar if I’m on. She was kind enough to let me flash her during my blogstreak
As for reviews, they can be tough to get. So You submit to a reviewer, and you wait, you wait, and you wait some more. Hopefully, the review is good, and so far, mine have been. But it’s a funny thing about reviews, as excited as you are to get them, it’s always kind of anticlimactic. Kind of like Christmas. I’ve had some good reviews from review blogs. You can check my links on the right. Secret Language of Crows is one that eludes me, though. No reviews yet.