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Follow my journey toward publication. Laugh, cry, point and stare-- it's all good. I'll leave a trail so that you, my fellow author, may have a straighter path to finding your own elusive publishing contract. Adventure awaits. Let's travel together...



Sunday, February 7, 2016

Spotlight on "Anything for a Story" by Cynthia Hickey


Stormi is delightful as the accident prone and bumbling wanna be detective. What she lacks in skill she makes up for in nosiness. Add in the sexy detective and a slightly nutty family and our lead character has her hands full.
~Amazon reviewer



About the book:
Stormi Nelson, best-selling romance author, moved into her huge Victorian house in the private community of Oak Meadows Estates. When her agent tells her that her characters are becoming too cardboard and that she needs to get out and mingle with people, she comes up with the idea of a Neighborhood Watch Program. The only problem is … she’s the only member. On her first night of patrol, she stumbles over a dead body, meets a hunky detective, who happens to be her neighbor and clearly frustrated with her, and her mother, sister, niece and nephew arrive to shake up Stormi’s peaceful life. As she is immersed ever deeper into the mystery surrounding a neighbor’s murder, she decides to change writing tactics and write a romantic mystery based on her experiences. What follows is a frolicking good time as Stormi finds herself the nosiest neighbor of them all. Can she find the killer before she becomes the next victim?

PURCHASE

A note from the author, Cynthia Hickey:

"Why I Became a Writer"

Funny how this roller-coaster business can tug on someone until it’s either write or die. A bit dramatic, yes, but that’s how most writers feel.

I started reading at the young age of five and became hooked on words and stories. Being a shy child, I would make up stories to act out, but it wasn’t until Junior High when an English teacher assigned a
writing project that I realized how much I loved putting the story to paper. I began writing short stories in which my younger brother was featured as the hero, or I’d write a romance featuring me and whatever boy I had a crush on at the time.

When I turned fifteen, I wrote my first “real story” about terrorists taking over a high school. Funny how I have now seen that very plot made into a movie. I couldn’t be stopped after that first “book.” I kept writing, keeping my stories in a notebook, which I unfortunately lost when I married and moved out of state. Then, life happened and I didn’t take up writing again until the age of forty when my children were older and I had time to devote to it.

In 2007, I published my first cozy mystery, Fudge-Laced Felonies, with Barbour Publishing and haven’t slowed down since. Forty books later, and several genres added to the mix, I have no intentions of stopping this crazy career any time soon. It’s as much a part of me as breathing.

About the author:
Multi-published and Amazon Best-Selling author Cynthia Hickey had three cozy mysteries and two novellas published through Barbour Publishing. She had several historical romances release in 2013, 2014, 2015 through Harlequin’s Heartsong Presents, and has sold half a million copies of her works. She is active on FB, twitter, and Goodreads, and is a contributor to Cozy Mystery Magazine blog and Suspense Sisters blog. She and her husband run the small press, Forget Me Not Romances, which includes some of the CBA’s well-known authors. She lives in Arizona with her husband, one of their seven children, two dogs, two cats, three box turtles, and two Sulcata tortoises. She has seven grandchildren who keep her busy and tell everyone they know that “Nana is a writer”. Visit her website at www.cynthiahickey.com

Friday, January 8, 2016

COTT Features "The Sound of Diamonds" by Rachelle Rea



Readers of Jody Hedlund’s new medieval YA series and Melanie Dickerson’s fairytale-based YA novels will love Rachelle Rea’s The Sound of Diamonds. 
—Dawn Crandall, award-winning author of The Hesitant Heiress


PURCHASE

About the book: 

Her only chance of getting home is trusting the man she hates.

With the protestant Elizabeth on the throne of England and her family in shambles, Catholic maiden Gwyneth seeks refuge in the Low Countries of Holland, hoping to soothe her aching soul. But when the Iconoclastic Fury descends and bloodshed overtakes her haven, she has no choice but to trust the rogue who arrives, promising to see her safely home to her uncle's castle. She doesn't dare to trust him...and yet doesn't dare to refuse her one chance to preserve her own life and those of the nuns she rescues from the burning convent.

Dirk Godfrey is determined to restore his honor at whatever cost. Running from a tortured past, Dirk 
knows he has only one chance at redemption, and it lies with the lovely Gwyneth, who hates him for the crimes she thinks he committed. He must see her to safety, prove to the world that he is innocent, prove that her poor eyesight is not the only thing that has blinded her but what is he to do when those goals clash?

The home Gwyneth knew is not what she once thought. When a dark secret and a twisted plot for power collide in a castle masquerading as a haven, the saint and the sinner must either dare to hold to hope...or be overcome.

With a lovely style that is mature and seasoned, at an enviable professional level, readers are in for a real treat with Rachelle Rea’s debut. Beautifully written, The Sound of Diamonds is a gem. An unusual heroine, a unique setting, and a heart-stopping hero make this a must-read for historical fiction fans. Encore, Rachelle Rea!
—Laura Frantz, author of The Mistress of Tall Acre

Get to know the author:

Rachelle Rea plots her novels while driving around the little town she's lived in all her life in her dream car, a pick-up truck. An Oreo addict, she is also a homeschool graduate and retired gymnast. She wrote the Sound of Diamonds the summer after her sophomore year of college.

When and where did you first get the idea for the Steadfast Love Series?

A song I was listening to on the radio inspired the title of the first book. So I wrote Diamonds, but when I finished it, I realized to my great frustration that the characters weren’t done with their story, even though I had been quite adamant that I would write a stand-alone novel. But the story wasn’t finished, so I kept writing.

2015 has been a busy year for you with your first two releases! :) Can you tell us one of the moments you'll remember most from this special year?

Holding my book for the first time was a big deal! I remember the boxes coming in, then sitting on the couch with a copy in my lap, just staring and realizing I was beaming a bit…

Rachelle Rea’s debut novel transports readers back to the danger and mystique of Europe during the 1500s. Rich in church history and woven together with romantic suspense, The Sounds of Diamonds is a fascinating story and stellar debut. I look forward to reading more from Rachelle Rea!
—Melanie Dobson, award-winning author of Chateau of Secrets


I saw on your website that you also write reviews, articles and offer editing services. What's one of your favorite things beyond writing novels that you enjoy?

Editing is such fun! I daresay I enjoy editing a page full of my own (or others’!) words just as much as I enjoy splashing words onto a blank page.

Is there anything else you'd like to add? Any upcoming projects you can share with us? 

I’m really excited about all that 2016 may hold! My third book, the last in the Steadfast Love series, releases the day after Valentine’s Day! Beyond that, time will tell ;)



Friday, December 18, 2015

COTT's Oct/Nov 2015 Champion!


Thank you to our viewers, fans, and voters—this was a near record-setting post view for our five authors. Congratulations to all of your and thank you for participating. Some of the comments you received include:

  • Thank you for producing such amazing Christian fiction!
  • All of them are beautiful covers.
  • The world of writing may be hard, but you all have already done more than many people dream of doing by finishing and publishing a book. Keep writing, and best of luck.
  • Keep on writing and telling your stories!
  • Keep writing! Keep believing!
  • Love these covers, all!
  • All look like great books, but the cover of Sound of Silver really grabs me the most.
  • Voted for After! A lovely book inside and out.
  • Love the covers of "After" and "Love's Christmas Past" but am most excited to read "Sofia's Tune" first. Who doesn't love a good secret? Excited!
  • LOVE your work, Rachelle!
  • Good for you, Janet Sketchley, for having your book included here.


Certainly all wonderful, but...there


                          Can

                                    Be

                                           Only

                                                      One



Congratulations to this month’s Champion, Cindy Thomson, and Sofia’s Tune!


Released November 1, 2015
Ebook - $4.99
Print: $14.99


In Sofia’s Tune, we meet Sofia Falcone, a young woman who has been living in New York only a short time when she is stunned to discover a family secret, one that soon sends her beloved mother into a mental institution. Scrambling to keep her job and care for her mother, Sofia is convinced confronting the past will heal all wounds, but her old world Italian family wants to keep the past in the past.


During this time, she encounters Antonio, a Vaudeville pianist with a street-smart dog, seeking to discover why his father was mysteriously killed. Their crossed paths uncover a frightening underworld in Little Italy. Bringing the truth to light may cost Sofia’s mother’s sanity, Antonio’s career, and the livelihoods of countless immigrants. Change is on the horizon, but it may not bring what they expect.





Q & A With Cindy

·       Sofia’s Tune has a musical theme. What can you tell us about the meaning of “tune” in this story?

Antonio is a vaudeville pianist who dreams of becoming an accomplished concert musician. His dog resembles Nipper of the “His Master’s Voice” advertisement for gramophones. There is plenty of music in this story, but the title refers to changing your tune, finding a different path for your life, as both Sofia and Antonio must do.

·       Tell us about the dog on the cover.

Luigi is Antonio’s faithful companion who keeps reminding people of the dog listening to his master’s voice on the recording, as I mentioned. He’s well trained and a good judge of character. I really enjoyed adding a canine character to the story. Dogs are such an important part of many people’s lives. He is Antonio’s dog, but he really likes Sofia, as you can see on the cover!

·       What’s next?

Sofia’s Tune is the final novel in the series. However, I am planning on a novella, a sort of  prequel, which will tell Mrs. Hawkins’s story. Mrs. Hawkins runs a boarding house for immigrant girls. Her story is told very briefly in Annie’s Stories. This novella will be free exclusively for my newsletter subscribers. (You can sign up on my web site.)
Next summer I will be releasing the sequel to my first novel, Brigid of Ireland. The stories are set in 5th century Ireland, and weave in a bit of fantasy and adventure. They are somewhat different from the Ellis Island series, but are still representative of our ancestors’ stories that should be passed down for us to carry on their legacy of endurance, faithfulness, and wisdom.

And speaking of wisdom, Sofia’s name means wisdom, and I hope readers will be inspired by the music in the book trailer, written by my friend from Northern Ireland, singer/songwriter Andy Rogers.




Cindy Thomson is the author of seven books, including her newest novel, Sofia’s Tune, the third book in her Ellis Island series. She also writes genealogy articles for Internet Genealogy and Your Genealogy Today magazines, and short stories for Clubhouse Magazine. Most everything she writes reflects her mission of “Writing the stories of our inheritance." Visit her at www.cindyswriting.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cindyswriting and on Twitter: @cindyswriting

Monday, November 9, 2015

And The COTT Winner Is...


Congratulations to


A Noble Masquerade
by Kristi Ann Hunter!

Book Blurb:
Lady Miranda Hawthorne may long to break free of her ladylike expectations as he approaches spinsterhood, but finding herself intrigued by her brother's new valet is more rebellion than she planned. When she accidentally begins exchanging letters with a long-lost duke, things become even more complicated. Especially when hidden state secrets and dangerous encounters prove everything isn't exactly as it seems.

Reviews:
4 1/2 stars and Top Pick! from RT
Debut author Hunter pens a fantastic Regency romance. The characters are endearing and their motivations are not always what they might seem on the surface. This air of mystery adds depth to the tale. The romance portrayed is top notch and will cause readers to sigh with delight in the end.

A few words from our voters:
  • Kristi Ann Hunter is a fantastic author!
  • Go, go, go Kristi! Love the cover and the title!
  • Kristi Ann Hunter, i loved this book. great characters and wonderful story line.
  • Kristi Ann Hunter, you rock and your book is awesome! :D



Kristi shared the below information with us, too!

Book News:
An Elegant Facade, the sequel to A Noble Masquerade, is available for paperback pre-order on Amazon.

Book club prize packs are still available for book clubs that select A Noble Masquerade.
http://www.kristiannhunter.com/#!bookclubs/c1gbn


Ongoing Contests:
12 Books, 12 Winners Christian Historical Romance contest. A Noble Masquerade is one of the books that will be given away.
http://dawncrandall.blogspot.com/2015/11/win-one-of-twelve-new-paperback-releases.html?m=0

Caught You Reading Contest where you could win a sneak peek at my next novel.
http://www.kristiannhunter.com/#!contests/calh

Buy Links Available here: http://www.kristiannhunter.com/#!a-noble-masquerade/c190y 


Author Bio:
Kristi Ann Hunter graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in Computer Science but always knew she wanted to write. Kristi is an RWA Golden Heart contest winner, an ACFW Genesis contest winner, and a Georgia Romance Writers Maggie Award for Excellence winner. She currently lives with her husband and three children in Georgia. Find her online at www.kristiannhunter.com