Megan's 5 star rated Contemporary Romance

Monday, 25 March 2013

Clayton Bye

A Warm Welcome to Clayton
Clayton Bye is a writer, editor and publisher. The author of 9 books and a varied collection of short stories, poems, articles and hundreds of reviews, he is about to publish his second anthology of excellent short stories by some great talents from around the world.
The first book, Writers on the Wrong Side of the Road, featured general fiction, while the current offering, The Speed of Dark, is horror, through and through.
Clayton also offers a wide range of writing services, including small business management for writers.


How would you describe the Anthology?
The Speed of Dark consists of 27 strangely different and disturbing, short horror stories by 19 talented authors from around the world.

What makes it unique?
I hand-picked authors who I thought were capable of dropping the constraints of writing "normal" short stories and picking up the gauntlet to provide readers with really different and, most especially, disturbing tales of horror. This is not a book for a lazy, sunny Sunday afternoon; no, this book is meant to be read in a dark corner, beneath a single bulb lamp, and it is meant to disturb you deeply. These are stories you will carry with you for some time. Stories like "What about Mom?" and "Jesse's Hair" and "Little Girl Lost." All have the power to change you. And all are literary in nature. I'm not sure you'll find a book like this anywhere else on the market today.

What do you think are its outstanding attributes?
That's easy: the authors. This is a group who stretched themselves. They are a group who were finally allowed to take a story "way out there" and know it would be published. They didn't disappoint. And the really interesting thing? There is still a story for everyone; the stories are as diverse as the authors.

What inspired you to embark on this venture?
A number of things, as is often the case. I have a medical condition that limits me to 10-15 minute work sessions, then I must rest or do something less demanding. Because of this my plan to have a collection of my own short stories to publish by this spring just wasn't viable. But, I thought, I might be able to do an anthology of other authors work. After all, my anthology of the previous year was both an award winner and a critical success. Then, seeing as I had done general fiction the year before, I decided to do horror stories. Being who I am, the stories, of course, would have to be very different in nature. I began contacting authors and the rest, as they say, is history!

What's been the strangest thing that has happened to you, while you have worked on this book?
There are two things, actually. First, after years of trying to break into the Superstore market, Chapters/Indigo has agreed to evaluate my books for placement in their stores. I'm blown away. Second, one of the stories submitted was so visceral, and it affected me so deeply, I actually considered cutting it. This is a big deal. I'm a horror reviewer who has seen it all, except for this story. But thankfully I came to my senses, for this was exactly the kind of story I was hoping for when I began the project. Strange indeed!

In reading your bio, I saw that you are a man of many hats. How do you balance it all?
Balance? That’s a good one. I live and breathe writing and entrepreneurship. They’re the only things that keep me going. You see, I have severe Rheumatoid Arthritis (can’t walk more than a block), and I'm seriously Bipolar.

On a more useful line of discourse, I’ve always followed a simple philosophy. You make a list of things you want or need to accomplish in a day, beginning with the most difficult and most urgent, then continue on until the day is done. Anything left is put aside until the next day—without thought or remorse. You won’t get more done using any other method, and this one allows you to go to bed satisfied with what you did accomplish. It also allows for balance, as long as you build family and recreational goals into the list. I never complete my list, by the way. There’s more work to do than my lifetime will allow.

What else would you like to tell us?
The most useful thing I can tell any writer is to never forget that writing is writing and business is business. They’re two different things that you must do equally well.
"This [The Speed of Dark] was a horror anthology I was mightily pleased to have read... There is a lot of scope and dimension in these short stories." - Jess Scott, author of To IRAQ and Back
The Speed of Dark is an anthology of short tales of horror by Cynthia Ainworthe, Kenneth Weene, Clayton Bye, Micki Peluso, Mary Firman and more than a dozen other great writers. It's one of those hard-to-put-down books that keeps you up all night reading... and trembling. From the computer generated green terror in Retrovirus, to the dreadful secrets in the cellar in Taking Care of Mother and the unexpected fate of the man in room 627 in Hansom Dove, readers are sure to find that each of these macabre stories will keep them wanting to read one more before, if they dare, turning off the lights. - T.R. Heinan, author of L'immotalité: Madame Lalaurie and the Voodoo Queen
"In The Speed of Dark I got two things. One was excellent presentation with very good editing, and the other was well-written work that in most cases wasn't overly graphic, but which was interesting, involving and rarely over the top. Much of it was quietly creepy and, therefore, very effective." - Glenda's Bookshelves 


And don't forget to leave a comment for the chance to win a copy of 'The Speed of Dark'

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Kelly Andria

Kelly Andria is the pen name of two very close friends who decided to write a story to make people laugh. The two authors, although different in many ways and viewpoints, have a lot in common. Both Greek Americans coming from conservative vibrant families, they learned to speak and act as they believe. Fair but always kind. Their passion for art, food and romance led them to become authors of a comedy that redefines the “boy meets girl” norm.  The wacky one of the group knew that they had the stories in them. The other half quickly became convinced as their quirky characters took shape and form and gained a voice of their own.

The Art of Change
by Kelly Andria
Gallery owner Nellie, a giving yet neurotic New Yorker, brings together a mismatched cast of characters in the opening of Ryan Whittaker’s debut, a phallic show. Little does she know that she is setting the scene for odd and unpredictable relationships, much like Shakespeare in Midsummer Night’s Dream. The frenzied, magical mix-up is an outrageous farce with a deep moral message: there is a RIGHT place for everyone in this world and love and friendship cement us in it.

The Art of Change is a funny, smooth reading romance, which deals with bridging differences in gender,  education,  social milieu, in an insane but pragmatic, modern fairytale, set in New York City. The twists of the plot are written without an ounce of cynicism but simply acknowledging that life is neither here nor there, neither black or white and all can be dealt with in real friendship and love.

Here's A Taste of Kelly:
Chapter 1

“Vai, Pipino, a year ago, who would have thought we would be going to a ritzy art show—that’s high society, top-shelf society, Pipino!”

Pino Napoleon Castagnasis had been stacking his famous meatballs in his special aluminum container, one by one. He paused, meatball in hand.

“As caterers, Aurora, as caterers—hired help. Don’t you go filling your head with hot air. Mrs. Nellie, she’s a lovely lady, but we got to get everythin’ right for this artist guy—his big opening. He is the star!”

Aurora smiled fondly. “My Pipino will be a star, too, wit his cooking.”

Pino also secretly believed his meatballs were a work of art, so they had to be presented like a work of art. He refused to pour them in from the big pomegranate ceramic platter. Pino Napoleon—Pipino only to his wife—was meticulous to say the least, though his looks did not give that away.

He was a burly man with wavy dark hair, which always fell across his left eye. He would rake it back with his long sinewy fingers. Without the dark hair, he could have passed for a Scandinavian lumberjack. Instead, he looked more like a windblown fishing boat, banged ashore in Astoria Queens, straight from the Liguria Sea in the Mediterranean.

Content with his carefully piled “neatballs,” he snapped the last corner of the aluminum top closed with a smirk. The tablecloths were already in the van, ironed and folded, side by side with the appetizers. They were all in their individual shiny containers, coded by cover: yellow for the Dijon mustard–flavoured crackers, red for his classic bell pepper spread.

“Where are the light blue ones for our mini–spinade poofs? Come on, do not stick them in your mouth—now of all times, my Aurora Horora!”

“I am so in love wit dem! Warm, crunchy and puffy . . . just like when I see you in your red silk undies, my puffy Pipinusko. I see dem and I become naughty, horrible Horora, I know...”

Each container bore the label INSTROCTIONS so that Aurora would get everything

Pino looked sideways at Aurora: cobalt sequin clutch in her lap, she held up a little round mirror as she applied her plum lipstick. Once again he admired her indifference in the midst of his panic. Aurora had the ability to block out the world when she enjoyed herself, which she did regularly. She derived pleasure from mundane daily activities in an endearing way—simple meals, a TV show, spoonfuls of peanut butter, applying her Pond’s night cream, even ironing the pleats of his treasured chef’s hat.

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All substitutes in a life without sex, thought Pino. If they had little else between them, at least they lived their parallel lives in relative harmony, seeking comfort in the common habits they had acquired over the years—cooking, catering jobs, Corsican festivals, tango lessons, and, of course, eating. Together they could polish off four pints of homemade ice cream on top of orange tartelettes or demolish the mini–square napoleons, prepared with Pino’s amazing handmade puff pastry dough. Pino sighed at the memory.

Find out more about Kelly at her Website:
BUY LINKS click names Xlibris  Amazon Kindle  Amazon print  Barnes and Noble

Pleasure to meet you!

Now leave a comment for the chance to win a $25.00 GC for either Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

Friday, 8 March 2013

William Auch

A Warm Welcome to William

William Auch is a physician residing in Sacramento, California. When not seeing patients, he writes, studies French, and travels the world.

LOVE IN PROVENCE    By William Auch


When John Martin is forced to sell his tech company, he decides to take a six-month vacation to the south of France. 

When he meets Madame Garcin, her daughter Sophie, and her granddaughter Isabelle, his life is changed forever.   What began as a long vacation becomes a journey of self-discovery marked by love, loss, and tragedy. 

He is molded by this family of three generations of women, tempered by tragedy themselves, in ways that he could never have imagined.

Here's A Taste of William:

It seemed to John that the next three weeks could not go by fast enough. He was energized and quickly got back into the routine of jogging along the Embarcadero. It was a Sunday morning and John had made it all the way to the Marina Green, which was farther than the length of his usual run.

The green was filled with joggers, mothers pushing strollers, and the sailors heading for the yacht harbor. The sky was bright blue and cloudless, and a stiff breeze blew into the harbor from the other side of the Golden Gate. John stopped in the middle of the green to catch his breath and looked up to see a sky full of kites. There were large ones, small ones, one that looked like a dragon, and another which resembled a bird, all in a kaleidoscope of colors that were enhanced by the sun from above. They all danced in the wind, some darting side to side, and others diving toward each other as if to demonstrate who owned the skies. Some would descend to the ground then dart back up into the sky again.

Off to one side was a small girl with a pony tail, who ran across the grass as though she were about to lift off like a bird. Behind her she towed a small red kite, which stubbornly refused to become airborne despite her best attempts to launch it. Each time the kite plunged to the grass she would tighten the string again and make another run at it, only to have the kite rise about ten feet, then plummet to the grass. She tried over and over again with such determination, John wondered how long she had been at it. After each failed attempt she would look over at her mother who was keeping an eye on her from a distance, then the girl would continue with more determination than the previous attempt. John thought about Isabelle and how much he missed her. He could not wait to see her. He could imagine Isabelle when she was young, pulling on the kite string with the same determination as the little girl.

John walked over to her mother sitting on the grass and asked with a smile, “Do you mind if I give her a hand?”

Her mother raised her eyebrows at first and studied John from top to bottom, but then a smile slowly crept onto her face. “Sure, why not?”
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Good to meet you, William! Love the setting for this book.

Don't forget to leave a comment for the chance to win a $25 Amazon GC

Monday, 4 March 2013

Lara Nance

A Warm Welcome to Lara
Lara Nance grew up and lived in many cities throughout the South. She loves to write in a variety of genres within the scope of women’s fiction. But the basis of all her stories is a tale that will entertain and intrigue.

If you want to escape and lose yourself in a novel, you’ve come to the right place. Choose your genre and settle in to be entertained. From thrilling mysteries and steampunk tales, to paranormal romance and adventure, Lara’s willing to explore a variety of compelling stories full of danger and suspense, with a touch of romance.

Having been on the fencing team in college and now living on a sailboat convinces her that she was a pirate in another life, or possibly kin to Errol Flynn… However, due to the unfortunate demise of the romantic pirates of the past, she lives out her fantasies, thrills and adventures in her stories.

Currently docked in Norfolk, Virginia (until the wind changes) Lara enjoys living on her sailboat and spends time reading, of course writing, indulging a variety of artistic endeavors, cooking and sailing with her husband, Joe and their Yorkie, Rio.

Memories of Murder  by Lara Nance
Memories of Murder by Lara Nance, a Paranormal Romance is available now but will be free from March 4 – 8th on Amazon Kindle.
When Maeve McKenna renounces her witch powers and accepts a low-key nurse practitioner position at a Virginia retirement community, the last thing she expects is a suicide her first day on the job.

As the town's sexy sheriff, Paul Sutton, starts looking into the tragic death of his father's friend, Maeve can't help but get involved--with both the case and him. Their informal investigation unveils an old journal that connects the ruins of a nearby asylum and long-forgotten cemetery with the shiny new retirement community's memory unit--and Maeve's Alzheimer's patients.

Maeve senses a sinister presence in the old asylum, calling to the patients, but in order to stop it from killing again, she must first conquer some demons of her own and reclaim the magic she's denied herself.

A Taste of Lara:

“No, stop. Don’t jump!” Maeve McKenna yelled at the man poised on the roof three stories above her. Her heart pounded as he took a step that left his toes hanging over the edge. A wave of cold that had nothing to do with fear pressed about her as though a frigid hand gripped her soul. She frowned at the eerie presence and pressed her hands to her head.

“Damn.” She swirled around looking for help. Across the parking lot and among the small villas scattered about the manicured landscape, elderly couples strolled or walked their dogs. But they were too far away to do more than stare in her direction. The urge to use her powers was pointless, she no longer had them.

“Hey,” she called trying to get the man’s attention as he looked back over his shoulder, eyes wide as he flinched away from something she couldn’t see. If only he would talk to her, she might be able to keep him safe until someone got to him. He had on pajamas, so he must be a patient. She held up her hands. “Hey, back up, stop.”

“Oh, no! Mr. Baker, no!” A woman with short black hair ran from the main entrance of the retirement community, waving her arms.

Both Maeve and the woman screamed as the unfortunate Mr. Baker took a step into the air and hurtled to the ground. He landed in a heap of tangled limbs and bloody splatter on the sidewalk in front of them. The cold presence surrounding Maeve seeped away, leaving her rubbing her arms and puzzled at the sensation.

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Pleasure to meet you, Lara!

Now leave a comment for the chance to win a signed cover flat or a $50 Amazon GC